Sunday, March 27, 2022

The Left is Losing, Pollievre and the Liberal-NDP Deal


I can't help mentioning this Jacobin article I read a little while ago: "Capitalists Are Escalating Their Shakedown of American Workers" by James Rushing Daniel:

Americans are more poorly positioned than we have been in nearly fifty years. By almost every measure — inflation, wages, medical expenses, student debt, rent, transportation costs — we are struggling. We are paying more for necessities and experiencing deepening immiseration while corporate profits are higher than they’ve been in nearly a century.


Wage theft and opportunity hoarding are perennial concerns, but what we are seeing now is a gold rush on working people’s remaining savings, scant as they are. In this, Americans are being tested to see just how much we’re willing to endure. Capitalists, having been instrumental in creating a workforce too exhausted and disorganized to mount an effective defense against plummeting quality of life, are betting the answer is quite a lot. And while inspiring union votes are being held across the country, the overall lack of any significant and sustained anti-capitalist movement telegraphs that we will still put up with more.

We need to show that we won’t.


Broke and bullied, we’re discovering that capitalists are trying to squeeze consumers and workers for all we’re worth — even if that means putting us in positions where we are literally dying for the job.

Inflation has decimated the modest wage gains workers saw last year. An hourly earnings increase of 0.4 percent, reported back in October, was obliterated by nearly 1 percent inflation for the month. Over the course of the pandemic, net hourly wages have declined 1.2 percent, while prices have climbed 7.5 percent over the past year, both due to inflation and because of the padding of corporate profits. Food prices, in particular, are up over 10 percent from a year ago.

Rents have similarly exploded, with some cities seeing as much as a 40 percent increase over the past year. 


Student debt also remains a significant burden on Americans. While Biden has forgiven $15 billion of the $1.7 trillion total, including most recently a $415 million package, these drips and drops fall far short of campaign promises. With student loan repayment set to begin shortly, tens of millions of Americans will once again be thrown into debilitating economic stress. 

The effects of the current shakedown go beyond mere impoverishment, which is certainly dire enough. American life expectancy also infamously dropped in 2020, from a previous 78.8 years to 77.3. While in part attributable to COVID, Americans are statistically dying younger from other causes as well — homicide, diabetes, and what Anne Case and Angus Deaton have called “deaths of despair,” including liver cirrhosis and drug overdose.

It goes on and on.  And while Mister Daniel mentions signs of worker pushback, the enormity of this suffering, the inequality gap, the capitalists' power to do as they please, ... the fact that "Americans are more poorly positioned than we have been in nearly fifty years" ... all of this certainly would seem to give the lie to any previous talk of left "victories" and the effectiveness of our "resistance" during my lifetime.

Particularly touching is Daniel's statement here:

And while inspiring union votes are being held across the country, the overall lack of any significant and sustained anti-capitalist movement telegraphs that we will still put up with more.

We need to show that we won’t.

What exactly does he mean by that?  What is ANYONE planning on the left to show genuinely massive worker refusal to continue to take this abuse?  What is happening to make the capitalists and their political hirelings fear the consequences of continuing to abuse us?  MASSIVE one-day peaceful rallies?  MASSIVE petitions?  In the United States a MASSIVE "get-out-the-vote" campaign for the Democratic Party?

As with all things, many human beings within the community of the political left seem to be cut-off from understanding the meanings of the words that they utter.  Just as so many people, within the context of the crisis of Putin's invasion of the Ukraine, blithely discuss the possibility of nuclear war as if they really don't understand that it means certain death for themselves and everyone that they love and the extinction of the entire human race, so too, do these people not understand that their "fighting back" and their "resistance" and their "struggle" and their "coalition building" and their "activism" have accomplished sweet fuck all and that the outcome for the future looks to be more of the same.

People!  Whatever you've been doing, it's obviously not working!

Not everyone on the right-wing is a hopeless deplorable.  (And, yes, nazis of any persuasion are deplorable.)  Some of them are confused and/or ignorant.  (And some are intelligent people who are leery of societal change.)  Hard economic times makes people "conservative."  It makes people retreat into smaller, like-minded (or whatever) groups to preserve resources for themselves and their in-group.  It makes them distrustful of others, "outsiders," seeing them as rivals for those scarce resources.  Some of these people we should try to reach.  If, by any stretch of the imagination, we were winning practical benefits for people on our side we perhaps could have some of these entitled blowhards putting their self-interested activism on OUR side.  (They might be distasteful allies but you don't always have the luxury of choice when you're outgunned and losing.) Alas, our society has degenerated to the point where a vile turd like Pierre Poilievre.  This shit-head was an embarrassment to someone as loathsomely stupid as stephen harper.  And yet, the second-biggest political party in Canada, the one that continues to receive the endorsement of the majority of the capitalist media's "journalism" products, has a good chance of having this imbecile as it's leader.

This career politician who disparages government while serving as a whore for corporations; this asshole who abused public resources for partisan propaganda; this racist scumbag who hates the First Nations even more than Justin Trudeau does, ... this tool represents a sizeable proportion of the Conservative Party of Canada!  Yet more evidence of the incapacity of the human species.

Oh well.  To end on a higher note though I'll celebrate the possibility that the federal NDP salvaged its relevance by agreeing to a "Supply and Confidence Agreement" with the federal Liberals in return for a national dental and pharmacare plan for low-income Canadians.

It's for the best that the NDP and Libs have been able to come to terms on a supply and confidence agreement which should at least provide for substantial material gains for people who need them, and may go further in setting up core elements of a universal health care system which have long been lacking. And it's particularly gratifying to see at least some recognition of the leadership that requires. 

But while it's well worth celebrating what looks like a turn for the better, it's also worth a reminder as to what - and who - has prevented that type of cooperation from happening in the past.

Remember that Jagmeet Singh's message after the 2019 election was one of willingness to work with the Liberals on shared priorities. And Justin Trudeau's response reject any systematic cooperation with a single party, as he preferred piecemeal politics and perpetual Parliamentary chicken to acceding to any NDP priorities in exchange for ongoing confidence.


Needless to say, that leaves reason for concern that the same factors will affect both the length of time the current agreement figures to hold up, and the expectations as to what will be achieved while it does. And while the points of agreement may make some major achievements seem like real possibilities, there's a lot of work to be done to keep pushing toward actually bringing them to life before the Libs decide to go it alone.

The NDP disappoints so often and is so uninspiring and hopeless that I have walked away from them on a few occasions.  But this is something that reminds us that they still have their purpose.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Moral Imbecility


As evidence of the moral imbecility of liberals I offer you the following:  Sometimes during this recent crisis in the Ukraine I question the sincerity of Biden's concern for ordinary Ukrainians by pointing out his support for Saudi Arabia and the UAE's campaign of genocide in Yemen and for his evident plan to collectively punish the people of Afghanistan by starving them all to death.

The response of these liberals?  Some of them say the [they think] magic word "whataboutism" in the hopes that it makes me disappear.  Others misinterpret me that I'm trying to excuse Putin by bringing up US crimes.  Either way, I'm a Putin-pupper repeating Kremlin propaganda who can be summarily dismissed while they courageously support Ukrainians and do their part to defeat Putin by putting a Ukranian flag on their avatars and calling for no-fly zones over the combat zone.

And then they do absolutely nothing about Yemen and Afghanistan.  The sufferings of millions of people, TENS OF MILLIONS of people, directly at the hands of their own government (our Canadian government in the case of our weapons sales to the Saudi dictatorship) and instead they bray like the good brainwashed jackasses they are about the crimes of official enemies.  Even after I've brought it to their attention they treat it like a distraction.  They don't even write about it.

I find it just as maddening as the shit-heads wandering around wearing masks that don't cover their noses.  Goddamned fucking adults who haven't yet mastered the concept of breathing.  I find it just as maddening as the arrogant stupidity of those who are proudly unmasked.  COVID is invisible and some people have no symptoms and because of the efforts of more responsible people some don't even get infected.  So obviously it doesn't exist!  Obviously they're "Free Men On The Land" and you can't enslave THEM with a cloth mask!

These stupid liberals with their embarrassing continued adherence to "Russiagate" and displaying their inner authoritarians with all their calls for censorship of social media (while the corporate media and the government can obviously continue to lie their asses off) and their so obvious gullibility for brazen and stupid corporate media narratives!!!

One more thing (This is only indirectly related but I've wanted to say it for a while): When I was listening to the Canadian citizen Abdullah Almalki, who had been tortured in Syria at the behest of CSIS (who provided the Syrian torturers with questions to ask him as they abused him) about his ordeal, he mentioned that through the walls of his cell he could sometimes hear the cries of children from somewhere else in the dungeon.

I thought: That fucking monster!  Assad is a fucking monster!  And I believe that is the natural response to such a situation.  But when the USA and Saudi Arabia sent in Jihaadist maniacs to overthrow Assad I opposed it.  Because being an adult in a world as shitty as ours I realized that the wholesale slaughter of a civil-war (or a mercenary invasion in the case of Syria) and the likely consequences of a Jihaadist Syria would be worse than the Assadist status-quo.  This is how terrible the United States' government is: They managed to make Saddam Hussein, Bashar al-Assad, Muammar Gaddafi, and the Taliban look preferable to what the USA brings.

Sometimes I think that many humans know what words mean on a superficial level but they don't grasp their true meaning.  Idiot liberals pompously "weighing the option" of a nuclear war don't grasp that this means that they and everyone they love will be vapourized or doomed to a terrible death from thrist, or starvation and cancer.  And when they hear the words "vapourized" or "terrible death" etc., ... they don't really absorb what those words mean either.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Liberal Insanity: If You Want to Stay Alive --- Smarten the Fuck Up!!!!

 It's really getting hard to take.  The hysteria, the hypocrisy, the ridiculous chest-thumping war-mongering.  Now, don't get me wrong; I've always said that I find liberals to be intelligent people who I can tend to get along with up to a point.  But right now we're past one of those points.  And these people are losing their fucking minds.

Friday, March 11, 2022

A 1914 Moment


As I watch the world descend into COMPLETE insanity and disaster, I've started to think that the times we're living through are going to be world-transforming in a very bad way.  We have the self-created threat of global warming, with all the feedback-loops in place and our governments and oligarchs are still pursuing a policy of denial and profit-taking.  We have a worldwide pandemic that most of the OECD nations have decided to treat as a minor annoyance to be dealt with in a half-assed (at best) way.  We have placed the profits of the pharmaceutical industries ahead of human lives by upholding patent protections for vaccines over the mass vaccination campaign that is so clearly required.  The same percentage of the population that would vote for stupid grifters like stephen harper, Donald Trump, Jason Kenney, Rob Ford, etc., are, meanwhile, still convinced that the virus is a hoax, that wearing a cloth mask equals submission to totalitarianism and that vaccines are evil.  By our own choice (collectively) we have decided to let the virus roam at will, infecting people and mutating itself, while we deny the risk that any of these mutations might become something beyond our control.

And then, ...

And then there's the completely deliberate orchestration of a world war between the NATO countries (plus maybe Japan, South Korea and Australia) against Russia and China.

[Take a look at this map of the world showing the countries that have imposed sanctions upon Russia and those that have not:]

Contrary to the breathless propaganda of a humanity united against the unprecedented evil of Valdimir Putin's Russia, almost the entire Southern Hemisphere has opted out.  You could argue that my source for this map is a pro-Russian propaganda website but that doesn't change the level of accuracy of the map.  My quick search of news sites confirmed that the list of countries matches the information provided by the map.  India has been resisting US pressure to sanction Russia.

Also, contrary to the corporate news' propaganda, these sanctions on Russia aren't just going to hurt Russia.  All you are hearing is that Russia's economy has fallen into a death-spiral under the hammer blows of the sanctions imposed by the human rights defenders of the West, led by the exceptional, essential nation, the United States of America.  But make no mistake: This economic warfare is going to impose massive inflation on the entire world and European countries that depend on Russia fossil fuels are going to suffer.  As a level of just how desperate the USA is to find other sources of fossil-fuel sources, the USA has gone to Venezuela's President Maduro [Wait!  Why aren't they talking to Juan Guano??] to see about access to his country's oil.  Also, they're moving quickly to welcome Iran's oil back into the international community. 

I know for certain that Saudi Arabia's Clown Prince Bonesaw and the privileged asswipes running the UAE have refused to listen to Grandpa Biden's calls to increase oil production.  

What you have to understand is that Joe Biden is an idiot.  He's always been an idiot.  His career has been pandering to racists about school integration; serving the sleazebags who used his state of Delaware to escape taxation and engage in money laundering.  He passed a bankruptcy bill that immiserated millions of US-American and a crime bill that produced a massive increase in the US prison population.  He genuinely [and therefore stupidly] believed that US Social Security was unsustainable and spent years trying to cut into it.  He voted for the invasion of Iraq. 

His Secretary of State Antony Blinken is an anti-Arab racist, delusional imbecile who is able to speak out loud about the dangers of Iran "destabilizing" the Middle East without dying of embarrassment.  

That two such arrogant, hypocritical fantasists could have started an economic war without having fully throught through the ramifications seems to me entirely possible.

Well, that's all I feel like writing about this morning.

Sunday, March 6, 2022

Thwap weighs in on the Ukraine crisis


At the back of their minds both Biden and Putin have been agonizing over just how Thwap is going to react to this world crisis.  Well White House or Kremlin bureaucrat being paid to monitor my blog in order to instantly alert your boss that Thwap has deigned to speak; TODAY IS YOUR LUCKY DAY!!!!

Ahem!  I think this is mostly Biden's fault but I am angry that Putin has attacked the Ukraine itself.  I had no problem with Putin recognizing the Donbas provinces of Donetsk and Luhansk.

There is nothing to choose between the competing mafia dons in Washington or Moscow.  FWIW I think Putin is far more intelligent than Biden.  But that doesn't take a lot of doing.  Biden has always been an idiot and now his aged brain is incapable of sustained focus and clarity.  I have always said (in the face of the moronic, fanatical Putin hatred embraced by brainwashed liberals) that comparing the foreign policy behaviour of Russia and the USA honestly, one finds that Russia has been far more patient and circumspect and that the USA has been belligerent and provocative.  And that the reasons for this are not Putin's love of peace and respect for the rule of law, but are, rather, due to Russia's relative poverty and weakness.  Russia's GDP is smaller than Canada's.  It's population is over 100 million people larger than Canada's.  Which makes Russians much poorer than Canadians.  Wars are expensive.  Occupations are even more expensive.  Putin (while being as debased and insane as any other garden-variety national politician) is not a delusional idiot.  He can't bully the world the way the USA can, starting wars of choice and meddling in any country on the planet he has designs on.  Because he can't afford to.