One of the crime scenes

Monday, June 16, 2014

Some Words
from the Professor

 Don’t Ask The Canadian Media.

By Robin Mathews
June 15, 2014

What Is The Significance Of The “Eurosceptics”? The European Union Haters? Don’t Ask The Canadian Media.

There have to be reasons for the downright, fundamental badness of present Major Media work in Canada. People still go to CBC – and to CBC Radio especially – believing the fiction that there they will get some real reporting and real analysis. It isn’t so.

In the parlous state of Western democracies and Western economics – and, by extension, the parlous state of the rule of law and malfunctioning parliaments – Canadians should be hearing sharp analysis that sets them on their heels and makes them think and act. Especially from the National Broadcaster.

Take this very Sunday and Michael Enright, host of the long Sunday Morning show (that has the opportunity to be the most important broadcast in Canada and never, never is.) The problem is not, for a moment, a matter of budget. Radio has the wonderful ability to interview and hear from top intelligences at almost no cost. The problem, rather, is of sell-out, of complacency, of buddy-hunting, of wanting to be part of The Canadian Establishment, of “Pay, Perq’s, and Privileges”.)

The subject today was the sudden appearance of parties and people in Europe who are enemies of The European Union, “Eurosceptics” – who have won a place in the European Parliament. In Canada there are, perhaps, a hundred people who could address that matter with clarity, with responsibility, and who could relate it intimately to the politics of Canada now.

And so Michael Enright went to Bradford University in the United Kingdom to interview Paul Rogers (whom he calls my friend) who is (what is called ) a specialist in “Peace Studies” there. As Winston Churchill once said what followed was “the bland leading the bland”.

Worse. What followed was a rather slimey suggestion that anti-semites and dirty fascists are waiting in the wings to grab power in Europe and to do … well … to do … well, we know what they do.

In fact, there are in Europe many Right forces which are anti-European Union. And there are, doubtless, slimey fascists who would love to get hold of power in Europe. What’s new? They are even effectively at work (and in governments) in Canada – but that subject is too unpopular with the Canadian Establishment for Michael Enright to go anywhere near it ... ever. They are there. But they are not the real story. They are the product of the real story. In Canada as well as in Europe.

Michael Enright – as if popping out of 1954 and McCarthyism – asks, you know, like, what about anti-Semitism in Europe? What about old Nazi Germany? Like, what about Xenophobia? Like what about all those awful things that that we know spell the advent of Nazism, Fascism, brute repression? It is as if he is saying: “Okay everyone, support repression of legitimate, even parliamentary opposition, learn to hate it because it is fighting the huge global corporate power that is taking over the European Union and turning it to profit, profit, profit for corporations at the expense of the people of Europe. Fight those nasty people who are running in elections and winning seats in the European parliament - and upsetting the entrenched thieves and fraudsters.

The story of Right Forces in Europe is NOT the story of the anti-European Union people on the Right, in the Centre, and on the Left in Europe. The story is about what has happened to make people in Europe increasingly anti-European Union ... now, and sure to grow in the future.

That is the story Michael Enright and the CBC should be tracking carefully and brilliantly. Instead, it is the story they are determined not to tell. The story they are determined to cover up. The story they will not go to the hundred Canadians to hear told. But will go to the University of Bradford in England to find someone to do a cover-up job on the story (even if Paul Rogers doesn’t know how he’s being used).

It isn’t – the story – complicated (though it’s intricate) – and we can ignore the intricacies because it is a pretty straight-up story of dirty tricks and power-grabbing.

For instance, when the Soviet Empire collapsed, the U.S./NATO moved in with Shock Economics Advisors and helped bring Russia to its knees for years, helped create the oligarchs of Russia and their gigantic theft of Russia’s wealth, and moved NATO closer and closer to Russia’s borders. (No financial assistance to a Russia on its knees. No help with slow transformation of State-owned enterprise to mixed and private ownership, Crown Corporations, etcetera.) The NATO West DIDN’T attempt to bring Russia into a cooperative, collaborative, consenting freely influenced and influencing community. It helped set up everything that was bad.

And now the West faces a rather truculent Vladimir Putin. Ungrateful wretch that he is!

To Europe:

Put the matter simply … for it is, in effect, a simple matter….

In the late 1950s, thinking upon the incredible brutality and destruction of the Second World War, some men and women decided Europe had to do better. It had to collaborate. It had to build ties and relations that would make it impossible for any single European nation to set about a mad program of repression and conquest and destruction of European civilization. It had to make a “European community”, a cooperative, collaborative, consenting, freely influenced and influencing community.

And since the late 1950s it has worked on that program. Except ….

Except there are immense riches at stake and there for those who can grab them if they can pervert the idea of the “European Community” and make it something very different.

THAT is what is behind the emergence of “far right and far left” forces in the recent European Union elections.

Here we have to introduce a few ugly factors. The International Monetary Fund (with Headquarter in New York, USA) has used its power to pauperize European countries. The European Central Bank has generally followed the lead of the IMF. The mad explosion of huge financial failures (credit swaps, etc. etc.) in the U.S. was exported to Europe to rob it of wealth. (Remember Goldman Sachs actively helped with the economic collapse of Greece). And more. That is to say European problems are not just local, by any means.

But they are local, too.

Europe has its own thieves and fraudsters. It has huge corporations who want cheap labor – if possible slave labour. It has organizations of corporate executives that lobby and lobby the European Union and buy and bribe legislators and civil servants, and work to get a Europe that is corporation-friendly ... corporation governed. It is probably fair to say they have recruited and/or placed the major officers of the European Commission. That is the semi-civil service, semi-legislating body that is not elected … and pretends it only “puts forward” ideas like the transatlantic free trade idea. It doesn’t legislate; it just provides intricate legislation to the legislators who have not, necessarily, asked for it.

It was those Civil Servants (?) who (working from the European Commission) cooked up a three volume New Constitution for Europe in 2005. Constitutions are usually – when long – a number of pages. This “Constitution” was three volumes long!! Because it was a “Constitution” some countries required a national referendum on its approval. The French media, mostly, rejoiced at it and recommended acceptance. (A lot of the media of Europe sold out from the start.) Other governments approved the New Constitution without referendum.

The French unions and some media people read the three volumes … and choked. It gave preference before human rights, social protections, and individual freedoms to the policies of large corporations. The French went to work to publicize the real story of the Constitution … and the French people rejected it.

 Then the Dutch people rejected it. And then it was withdrawn before the British people could also reject it. Victory for the people of the European Union. Except …

Except the European Commission went to work, wrote a treaty to be called The Lisbon Treaty, giving the corporations as much as possible from the failed Constitution, and got the treaty passed at Lisbon in 2007
by governments that didn’t have to consult their people in referendum. (They had to have a referendum on a new Constitution, but not on a Treaty!)

The picture is plain. The European Commission, the European Central Bank, the IMF, the U.S. government, AND MOST OF THE EUROPEAN NATIONAL GOVERNMENTS are now instruments of the big global corporations. England’s government, France’s government, Germany’s government – the powerful governments of Europe – are instruments of the corporations wanting to milk Europe and to oppress its population.

In Europe the attack is on against pensions, wages, education, health care, etcetera. France is a good example. A SOCIALIST president, Francois Hollande acts as a total lackey to U.S./NATO demands, and he supports almost all of the initiatives by the large corporations in Europe.

That sums up the problem and explains the anti-European Union, “Eurosceptics” winning seats in the European parliament. They are called “far left and far right” movements because the semi-Conservatives in power in Germany, the “Socialists” in France, the Conservative/Liberals in power in Britain all support the takeover of the European Union by large global corporations wishing to flatten the population of Europe, to ransack its wealth, and to oppress the working people of the continent.

Look at England, just for instance. Xenophobia? Hatred of foreigners? Screams for limits on immigration? Terrible? Not at all. The corporation/government alliance of Europe has opened up overall migration so that very low wage countries are now pouring out huge numbers to places like England where the new arrivals are REALLY threatening wage levels, really threatening social securities. So? So some of the English are asking for standards, for assurances, for limitations if standards of living are threatened. Some of them are getting elected to the European parliament. That is a simple, human demand for fairness.

Even Michael Enright and Paul Rogers touched on (very quickly, and then ran away) the fact that in England the chance to get low wages set is being exploited by corporations because there are so many near-destitute people “from away” willing to bring down wage standards.

The story is the global story. Global corporations are doing everything they can to replace governments of the people. They are bribing, brain-washing, and coercing governments to go along with the corporate agenda. Slowly … slowly … slowly populations are waking to the fact that their governments in power are selling them out – and are being assisted by national and international media in the sell-out.

Enter Michael Enright and Paul Rogers of Bradford University in England to talk about the “dangerous” people winning seats in the European parliament. But not to talk about why they have appeared and what has created them. Or to suggest that they may be the vanguard of a movement that has to take place to save the great ideal of a European Community.

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Sunday, June 01, 2014

the Illiterate
and Innumerate

I want all three halves of that pie!

Here we are approaching the halfway point in 2014 and this will be my first post since last December. It's partly because I've been trying to get other stuff done, be outside more and frankly I just grew tired of thinking about the same old crap continually coming around on the guitar, with the state of politics and the world in general just seeming to accelerate its rush to Hell in a Handbasket.

It would seem I'm not alone in this withdrawal from the blogosphere as some of my favorites like the Mound of Sound at the the Disaffected Lib or the always engaging fellow at the Sixth Estate have also either retired from active blogging or are at least taking a break. Heckfire (as RossK might say) even the self-proclaimed "King of Bloggers" has mysteriously disappeared from cyberspace, supposedly to build a new website (hopefully with the John Coltrane version of My Favorite Things this time) which I'm confident his followers both real and imaginary will expect to be Rolls-Royce quality, because it just doesn't take months and months to build a website, unless of course one doesn't know how.

Actually, I get depressed just reading the news, much less actually thinking about it and writing something about it. I mean, how many times does one need to hear idiotic ReThuglicans scream Benghazi, Bengazhi or listen to the idiocy of the furrin' born presidential aspirant Ted Cruz open his mouth and prove how dumb he is, while wondering how he ever got through university. I even want to kick my own ass when I hear the crap that comes out of John Kerry's mouth these days and recall that I voted for him and his adultrous VP p(r)ick in 2004 - of course the option was Dubya Bu$h and his baby sitter Deadly DickHead Cheney. Then I hear that 2016 might be Jeb Bush agin' Hillary Clinton and wonder when in the hell the U.S. became some kind of Kingdom ruled by two families. By the way Mr. Boner (the leader of the House) and Marvelous Marco Rubio, you don't have to tell me that you aren't scientists, yet are experts in issues regarding climate change and women's reproductive issues.

Then I get even stoopider and turn on the TeeVee and there's John MacAnus, the man who destroyed more U.S. planes than the Viet Cong and thought Caribou Barbie Palin was qualified to be one heartbeat away from the oval office yet again seemingly on EVERY Sunday morning talk show making up shit. I must admit though I do miss his girlfriend Lindsey Graham, ole Opie is at least always good for a laugh.

Here at home, Christy and HER FAMILY are still first and with her friends won't quit ripping off the province of B.C. until there is nothing worth stealing left. And the man with the weird looking hair is still befouling 24 Sussex although I dream of him being perp walked out of there in cuffs....but then the Royal Conservative Mounted Police are his honor guard, more and more like Adolf's SS and looking like soldiers from the Empire in Starwars more each day as conditions deteriorate and leaders more and more look to the police or military to protect them from the people they are supposed to serve.

This week for some undoubtably masochistic reason I actually bought and read two or three dead tree versions of the Vancouver Stun.  It is common and accepted knowledge that the news media of all kinds have gone so far downhill they would have to dig upward for days to reach the Dead Sea. They try to blame it on technological change but the fact is they are pushing propaganda and outright garbage and people have little use for garbage, unless it is organic and can be turned into compost, or can be recycled. Of course newspapers can be recycled, but one only needs so much kitty box liner, fish wrap or firestarter. 

I are eating!
Now I come to the reason for the title above for this post. Actually one of the papers I bought at the grocery store because there was a Pete McMartin column starting on the lower half of page one about the confrontation going on between the anti-intellectual Christy Clark (who never found a college she couldn't drop out of) and the teachers.  As per usual he feels obligated to pitch the dispute as equally the fault of both sides with the poor students and their parents as the victims. The fact that the BC Supreme Court has ruled against the crap Christy started in 2002 TWICE, yet she and her minions just either appeal (on our dime of course) or rewrite the same illegal crap in different words, an exercise that has now gone on for a dozen years. Christy, Gordo and Stephen all share a complete lack of respect for the law, or at least as it applies to them (it doesn't, apparently).

Anyhow, after telling how wonderful his educational experience was, in spite of having to take grade 13 twice, this professional (sic) writer comes out with this gem.
News flash, teachers, I don't know many in our modern economy who doesn't work hard......
Leaving out the ornamentation and getting down to the nuts and bolts or nouns and verbs we come up with "I don't know many.....who doesn't........." or a classic example of a pronoun and verb that disagree. I mean, we could have I don't know many who don't, or I don't know one who doesn't, but either he or his editor do a good job of mangling.  I make mistakes myself, hell, I made one a couple years ago, but then I'm not a pro, I don't get paid and I don't have an editor.

Then there is our man in politics, Andrew Coyne who in an article titled - "Bad Math shouldn't discredit policy," goes on to explain how Tim Whodat's million jobs plan that starts by firing 100,000 people is "
one-half wishful thinking, one half double counting" (actually multiplying by eight) and one half bad math. In other words Timmy the Tool's plan actually has Three Halves.......when I went to school, before the new math, we called those thirds.

   The disturbing part is that these faux-pas weren't committed by the poorly educated, poorly paid and inexperienced new journalists, but long time senior commentators.  Oh well, I guess I understood what they were both trying to say, not that I agree necessarily, but I find it jarring and know my English teacher in High School, much less university would have downgraded me for the one and I would not do very well in my math class if I divided anything into three halves.

BTW, the title of the McMartin piece is "The only victim in the war of the classroom." I refuse to link to anything behing PostMedia's paywall, but you are welcome to google either one.

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