Thursday, January 02, 2014

Important News in January of 2014

There has been a rash of bombings in Southern Russia. Folks have debated about these occurrences. These back to back terrorist bombings have transpired in the southern Russian city of Volgograd. It killed at least 32 human beings and 70 plus have been wounded. These things transpired in less than 24 hours. A security crackdown has transpired all over the country as a result of these bombings. The first of the 2 suicide bomb attacks took place on Sunday at Volgograd's main train station. It killed at least 17 people and wounded over 40 more. The attack was timed for the peak travel period on the eve of the New Year which is Russia's most important holiday. Authorities said that the bomb was detonated in a crowd in front of the station's metal detectors. The Moscow Times identified a suspect in the suicide bombing as Pavel Pechyonkin. He was a paramedic with an ambulance service. He converted to Islam and left home to join the Dagestani Islamist militants. Monday's bomb ripped through a trolley bus during morning rush hour. The bombing scene had shown bodies and body parts including clothing onto the city street. 15 people were reportedly killed in the second bombing with nearly 30 human beings injured. Vladimir Markin is the spokesman for Russia’s Federal Investigative Committee, told the media that the two bombs appeared nearly identical, suggesting a common source for the attacks. Referring to the trolley-bus bomb, he said: “Like the bomb at the railway station, it was packed with shrapnel. Since the strike elements are identical in the two bombs, it confirms the theory that the two attacks are linked. It is possible they were prepared in the same place.” No group has claimed responsibility for the 2 bombings. The suicide bomber identified in the train station attack had declared his allegiance to the Caucasus Emirate, an Al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group active in Chechnya, Dagestan, and North Ossetia and elsewhere in the region. The organization has claimed responsibility for previous mass terror attacks, including the March 2010 Moscow metro bombings that killed at least 40 people and the February 2011 suicide bombing at Moscow’s international airport that left another 37 dead. Volgograd was the place when a woman from Dagestan blew herself up on a bus, killing seven people. This occurred in last October. Dokka Umarov is the self-declared emir of the Caucasus Emirate. He issued a video in July wanting his following to derail the Sochi Olympics with a new round of attacks. The organization wants to have a separate Muslim state in the North Caucasus. The region was harmed with the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the restoration of capitalism in 1991. Since then, it has seen two wars in Chechnya (1994-1996 and 1999-2006), which claimed the lives of some 80,000 people, most of them civilians. Volgograd was once called Stalingrad. It was the city that turned the tide against Nazi Germany in WWII 70 years ago. The city is in lockdown now. Fireworks displays were cancelled in Saint Petersburg. There is still anti-Muslim and anti-agitation in Russia. Police dispersed Russian nationalists. quoted a former colonel in the Russian Federal Security Bureau as saying, “We need to do what Americans do. We have to keep tabs on each and every person. This technology that Snowden exposed—prevention and control—has a real effect.” Some want to kill those accused of organizing terrorist attacks. These terrorist attacks are evil, but Russia should have civil liberties too.

There is the evil of the Fukushima radiation disaster. Some believe that the radiation from the Fukushima a power plant is decimating wildlife in the Western portion of North America. We now have seals, seal lions, polar bears, bald eagles, sea stars, turtles, king and sockeye salmon, herring, anchovies, and sardines all suffering from mysterious diseases. These animals are suffering mysterious diseases and killing many in the West Coast of North Carolina. There are bald eagles dying in Utah. 20 have died in a few weeks alone. There is no conclusive evidence on why these things are transpiring. Officials at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center have their own theories. Some point to radiation from Japan after the 2011 meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Buz Marthaler, Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Northern Utah co-founder: “It’s just hard to have your national bird in your arms, going through seizures in a way it can’t control — when you can see it’s pain but don’t know what’s happening to it. As a human being, you just have problems with that. And when you lose one, it just grabs your heart. [...] In an average year, we might get one or two, but we’ve received nine so far, and five of those have died. The other four are still in our care. [...] We aren’t ruling out anything.” We know that the American and the Japanese governments are doing everything that they can to cover up the severity of the Fukushima disaster. We know that anytime the government or big corporations mess things up, the government works to cover it up instead of actually trying to fix the problem.  We have issues in Detroit too. There is the battle of the people against the tyranny of corporate rule in Detroit. Detroit should not experience some free market utopia that is corporate ruled totally. Detroit has been heavily privatized and gentrification is going on in the city as well. Detroit entered bankruptcy and their resources are being stripped. Detroit has slightly less crime than 1987, but Detroit is having huge economic problems. Governor Rick Snyder the emergency bankruptcy Kevyn Orr handles much of the power of controlling Detroit's finances. For years, the right-wing Mackinac Policy Center has advanced the idea of privatizing government services in Detroit and across Michigan. They have called for the sale of assets – like electrical utilities, water/sewer, and public electricity. Now the city's electrical grid is on its way to being sold to DTE Energy. The emergency manager will also put up Detroit's trash collection for private bidding. So, Detroit's mostly African American population is being exploited for the sake of corporate exploiters that want sports facilities, outdoor markets, and restaurants. So, the struggle continues.

Bill De Blasio is finally the new Mayor of New York City at January 1, 2014. He was sworn in by former President Bill Clinton. This represents a new era in seeing that this is the first Democratic mayor of New York City in over 20 years. The ball is in his court to do what is right. He is the 109th mayor of New York City. de Blasio is famous of his "tale of two cities" that describes about economic inequality and how the poor are oppressed by the system of the super-rich. Many folk who are low wage workers, who are against the stop and frisk policing, and who are against economic inequality voted for Bill De Blasio. There are issues in minimum wage issues, climate justice situations, workers’ rights, and other important issues. He can either be a revolutionary or another "liberal enforcer" of the 1 percent. Time will tell. One time, de Blasio made the disturbing comment that he called himself a fiscal conservative. The stop and frisk architect Bill Bratton should not be the police chief. There is a Goldman Sachs executive who claims to fight inequality. The mayor has signaled that mega real estate projects would be approved with less public aid. Folks should learn from the strengths and weaknesses of the Occupy movement as a means to address inequality from the bottom up. Power should be fairly sent to the 99 percent. It is interesting that the City Comptroller John Liu wants to increase the citywide minimum wage to $11.50 an hour, raise $15 billion in new revenue through progressive fiscal and tax policy, and builds 100,000 units of affordable housing in four years. So far, de Blasio is silent on the plan for his primary opponent John Liu. De Blasio wants to tax the wealthy to fund universal Pre-K. The future for New York City will be interesting. De Blasio has the responsibility now. He can be either part of the status quo or part of the solution. The choice is up to him. 

The Federal Reserve being exposed for its corruption and nefarious policies are a great thing to do. The Bank of Israel's Governor Stanley Fisher is nominated as the Federal Reserve Vice Chairman. It is obvious when you have select central banks controlling an inordinate influence in the world, then that is wrong and problems will occur. When the government is dependent for money on the bankers, then the government leaders can never totally control the nations. Many financiers in real life have no loyalty to patriotism or decency. The Federal Reserve just commemorated 100 years of financial terrorism. In mid-December, President Barack Obama nominated Stanley Fischer as the Federal Reserve vice chairman. If she will be confirmed, he will replace Janet Yellen. Yellen will soon be the first woman to be the Chair of the Federal Board of Governors. She will replace Ben Bernanke. She will become the Fed Chairman in the end of January. From January 2005 through June 30, 2013, Fischer was Bank of Israel governor. He holds dual US/Israeli citizenship. He was involved earlier with the Bank of Israel. In 1980, he was a visiting scholar. In 1985, he was Reagan administration advisor to Israel’s economic stabilization program. During that time, neoliberalism just grew. Knesset members amended the Bank of Israel Law. It prohibited it form printing money for industrialization, full employment, and immigrant absorption. Israel embraced transformative change for the worst. Power began shifting from various government agencies to the Finance Ministry and Bank of Israel. It’s similar to how America was financially dealt with. In 1985, Israeli policy included budget deficits reduced to near balance. Inflation was dampened the wrong way. Wages, public pensions, and other social benefits were cut. The shekel was debased. Unions lost power and workers were exploited. The Arrangements Law established an emergency Economic Stabilization Plan. Doing so sidestepped normal legislative procedures. Knesset members were prevented from debating its socially destructive provisions. A race to the bottom followed. It continued throughout the 1990s. It did so under Fisher. It does so today. In Israel and America we have mass privatizations. We have welfare and social benefits cuts. There is wealth disproportionately shifted from ordinary Israelis to corporate interests and super rich elites as well as other so-called structural adjustments. Fischer studied in England and America. He was an University of Chicago associate professor. He became an U.S. citizen in 1976. He worked in the IMF before. He was in the Group of Thirty by late 2001. We see neoliberalism as part of much of U.S. economy policy. Israel today gets billions of dollars in annual aid, the latest weapons and technology, unrestricted US market access, benefits afforded no other nations, and much more. It does so in violation of the 1961 US Foreign Assistance Act. He supports regime change in Syria. He worked to arrange the 2008 bailout of Citigroup. QE reduced the money supply. It did so “by sucking up the collateral needed by the shadow banking system to create credit,” said Ellen Brown. It’s an “asset swap.” Assets for cash reserves “never leave bank balance sheets,” she said. Doing so is counterproductive. It’s self-defeating. It constrains economic growth. It doesn’t create jobs. It benefits Wall Street. It does it at the expense of Main Street. When you have money used wisely in the economy, then growth can come. The QE policy benefits the banks not the workers or most Americans struggling at all. We need true economic populism without neoliberalism. 

Many are right on this point. In order for us to fight, we have to know what we are up against. How can we fight and we don't know what do we have to fight? We have to fight the evil system of white supremacy and other ills in our community. We have to teach children from birth that they are somebody and that they are special (including the fact that white supremacy must be replaced with justice. Our children should be told that THEY ARE BLACK AND BEAUTIFUL). We should learn from the mistakes of the past, so we can have a better present & future. We should learn the lessons of the past. We learned about compassion from Brother Martin. We learned about strength from Brother Malcolm X, Sister Harriet Tubman, and Sister Sojourner Truth. We learned about organization from Sister Ella Baker. We learned about pride in ourselves and in our common heritage from Brother Marcus Garvey & John Henrik Clarke, so many others. Therefore, we need to both have individual self-reflection and collective collaboration (for one individual can't do it all alone. When we UNITE as a GROUP and fight for our interests and justice, things happen. Helping the poor, being a mentor, helping our families, being an upright individual, etc. are all great things to do as well). We have to be psychologically prepared. Also, we need to activate independent, UNIQUE solutions, because we live in a new generation. This is a new century, a new year, and a new decade. We should never embrace a leader worshipping complex (for one individual), because fundamentally we can be leaders in our own community. We are leaders. Not to mention that we have to focus on self-improvement and self-determination, which are key portions of our cultural ethos. Altruism is important too since we are our entire Brother's and our Sisters' keepers. We have to be accountable for our actions and we should hold the PTB accountable for their crimes too. We have every right to fight discrimination and any injustices that harms the fabric of our black community. WE WILL FIGHT AND WE HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO FIGHT FOR JUSTICE. An important thing that we must do is that we should embrace LOVE. Without having LOVE for our people, nothing changes. I AM HUMAN, SO I WILL LOVE. I love the Sisters with a great romantic and social love. I respect the Brothers doing what is right too. LOVE IS SUPERIOR TO HATE and when we have love for the truth, then solutions can come about. WE SHOULD FIGHT AND WANT THE SYSTEM OF OPPRESSION ENDED AND BE REPLACED WITH A SYSTEM OF JUSTICE AND TRUE LIBERATION. Beauty is diverse and it is found in all of our skin tones as Black people. Colorism is always evil, no question about it. Black is beautiful. I am sick and tired of this light vs. dark nonsense myself. Regardless if we are light, brown, or dark, we are all black and beautiful. We should be concerned with racial profiling, crime, our families, the criminal justice system, HIV/AIDS, and some real issues too. We are all black and we want the same goal of the liberation of our people. The more folks realize that, the better off that we will be as a people and as a community. 

By Timothy

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