Thursday 19th of May 2022

of civil disobedience….

We are living in an age of civil war. Civil wars were almost nonexistent until the twentieth century. Except in a handful of cases—the American and English civil wars, the French Revolution—it was rare for citizens to mobilize soldiers to fight for control over their government. This didn’t mean that violence didn’t break out. Average citizens engaged in all sorts of brutality against one another; they assaulted strangers, neighbors, spouses, children, and members of their community. They just didn’t tend to fight over political control.

 

BY 

 

This changed after World War II. Since 1946, more than 250 civil wars have broken out around the world, and, after a dip in the 1990s, their numbers continue to increase. There are now almost 50 percent more civil wars than there were in 2001. Today, civil wars are being fought in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, South Sudan, Mali, Ethiopia, the Central African Republic, and elsewhere. In India and Malaysia, smaller intrastate conflicts have the potential to develop into something much worse. Even countries we thought could never experience another civil war—such as the United States and the United Kingdom—are showing signs of unrest. We are, it turns out, living in the age of civil war.

This rise in civil wars comes at a time when all other types of interpersonal violence are decliningAll other types. Human beings are less likely to commit murder, rape, or sexual assault than at any time in modern history. (While some attention was given to rising U.S. homicide rates in 2020 and 2021, the decline over the past 30 years remains stark.) And they are less likely to kill people in other countries outside their own; international wars have declined over time. The only type of violence that has not declined is civil war. Human beings may be less willing to kill each other over lots of different things. But they are more willing to kill each other over politics.

 

The civil wars that have been emerging in the twenty-first century are different from those in the past. These new civil wars tend to be smaller, more decentralized, and predominantly ethnic or religious in character. Militias are becoming a bigger part of these wars, but so are paramilitary forces, terrorist organizations, and gangs and cartels. They also don’t start the way most people think they do. They rarely start as big, explosive fights between an organized rebel group and government soldiers wearing formal uniforms. Instead, they start with pockets of anger in outlying places that build slowly over time. Leaders of these movements—people who are almost always more extreme than the average citizen—require years to organize, which they do in secret meetings, hidden from view. It took three years for Mexico’s Zapatista movement to grow to just 12 members, and more than six years for a group of 30 Tamil teenagers to form the Tamil Tigers of Sri Lanka. Al Qaeda leaders sheltered with tribes in the desert of Mali for years before they joined the rebellion there. Here in the United States, it took a small group of wealthy plantation owners and merchants in Charleston, South Carolina, decades of fearmongering and propaganda campaigns to convince the white working class to support secession.

Most people don’t even know that a violent movement is growing. This is especially true if it is happening in a big country with lots of people and good places to hide. By the time people hear about rebels or insurgents or terrorists or guerrillas—whatever they happen to be called—it is often too late. Extremists intent on violent insurrection are already mobilized, trained, and ready to fight. Ask almost anyone who has lived through a civil war, and they will tell you that they didn’t see it coming. They are surprised when their country descends into civil war.

 

Even after isolated acts of violence turn into more sustained attacks, people often remain blind and in denial. The citizens of Sarajevo could hear the sound of bombs detonating in the nearby towns and still believed their lively, cosmopolitan city would be spared. “We were watching like it was happening in the Congo,” said Esad Taljanović, a dentist in Sarajevo. “We were so naïve.” They see the first violent attacks as isolated events and not part of a larger phenomenon that goes far beyond the individual who detonated a bomb or demagogues spewing hate. But once attacks begin, life changes rapidly. People start viewing their neighbors, colleagues, and fellow citizens with suspicion. They take sides. The trip to the market becomes a terrifying act of courage, a calculated risk. A new and terrifying normal emerges.

People keep asking me if the United States could experience a second civil war. A few years ago, I would have said no. I have spent decades researching how and why civil wars start, and, until as late as 2016, the United States had none of the underlying conditions known to lead to war. I didn’t think American citizens would fight another war. But that has changed. Over the last six years, all of the warning signs for civil war have emerged in the United States, and they have emerged at a surprisingly fast rate.

Over the last six years, all of the warning signs for civil war have emerged in the United States, and they have emerged at a surprisingly fast rate.

We know the warning signs that a country is heading to civil war. The same patterns emerge whether you look at Bosnia, Ukraine, Iraq, Syria, Northern Ireland, Israel, or the United States in the 1860s. Between 2017 and 2021, I served on the U.S. government’s Political Instability Task Force, a group comprising conflict scholars and data analysts. One of the jobs of the task force was to come up with a model that helped to predict which countries around the world were likely to experience political instability and violence. The model had included every variable we thought could increase a country’s risk of civil war: variables such as poverty, income inequality, ethnic diversity, the geographic and population size of a country. To the task force’s great surprise, only two factors came up highly predictive. The first was whether a country’s government was an anocracy. Anocracies are governments that are neither fully democratic nor fully autocratic; they are something in between. You can think of them as partial democracies, illiberal democracies, or hybrid regimes. It is in anocracies that most civil wars occur.

 

The second condition is ethnic factionalization. The anocracies that tend to go to war are the ones where citizens have organized themselves politically around identity rather than ideological positions. Their political parties are based on the ethnic, religious, or racial identity of their members, and they seek to rule at the exclusion and expense of others. Ethno-nationalism during times of partial democracy is a combustive mix.

We also know who tends to start civil wars, especially ethnic civil wars. It’s not the weakest, poorest, or the most subjugated groups in a country. Instead, it’s the groups that were once politically dominant in a territory but have lost dominance or are in the process of losing it. Serbs started the war in the former Yugoslavia. They had dominated both government and military positions for decades during the Cold War and stood to lose the most power when the country began to democratize. Iraq’s Sunnis had held most of the key positions in Sad­dam Hussein’s government and military for decades before being forced out of power by the United States. They, too, started a civil war. Citizens of eastern Ukraine had a pro-Russia native son in power as president until 2014. Once President Viktor Yanukovych fled, so too did their favored position, and demands for secession soon followed. Want to know where civil war is most likely to break out? It’s in a partial-democracy, riddled with identity politics, where the once politically dominant group is in decline.

The January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol was a window into what has been brewing beneath the surface of the United States for years. Democracy in the United States has been weakening since at least 2016. The 2019 report on the Global State of Democracy by the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA) found that the United States was one of eight countries around the world that had experienced the greatest widespread democratic erosion in the previous five years. (The other countries were Brazil, Hungary, Kenya, Poland, Romania, Turkey, and India.) A recent report by Freedom House announced that America’s democracy was “in trouble,” declining significantly in the past decade. And in 2020, the Center for Systemic Peace, a nonprofit organization in Virginia, downgraded America’s democracy to an anocracy for the first time since 1800 because a sitting president refused to accept the results of the election and attempted to overturn the results. (By the end of 2021, the United States was upgraded to a democracy as a result of the peaceful transfer of power and a new administration that respected the rule of law.)

 

The United States now also has, in today’s Republican Party, its first modern ethnic and religious faction. In 2007—one year before Barack Obama was elected—whites were just as likely to call themselves Democrats as they were to call themselves Republicans. But working-class white Americans moved their support to the Republican Party after Barack Obama’s first term and stayed there. Today, the Republican Party is more than 80 percent white, with a large base of evangelical Christians. America’s political parties have never been divided by race or religion. But one of America’s two big parties is now a quintessential example of an ethnic faction.

Why is this happening now? We don’t know yet, but we have hunches. The rise of social media is likely driving some of it. Open, unregulated social media platforms have made it easier for demagogues to use disinformation and misinformation to help get themselves elected—something that has happened in the United States, Britain, India, Brazil, and the Philippines. It has also made it easier for autocrats such as Vladimir Putin to meddle in foreign elections in ways that undercut trust and support for democracy and exacerbate societal divisions. But certain groups of citizens around the world are also becoming increasingly fearful and insecure as a result of the longer-term effects of globalization, technological advances, and shifting demographics. The United States, for example, will be the first Western democracy where white citizens lose their majority status as a result of immigration and low birth rates. This is projected to happen in 2045, but other countries will follow. Around 2050, white citizens will become a minority in Canada. This shift could happen in the United Kingdom and New Zealand in the second half of the century. Far-right, ethnically based parties in all of these countries have attracted membership by issuing ominous warnings about the end of white dominance, emphasizing the great costs—economic, social, moral—of such a transformation.

Until January 6, Americans didn’t realize how domestic extremism had grown in the United States, and how it was connected to larger patterns of violence. We have been distracted by lesser threats and crises and by elites who want to keep us distracted. While we have been fighting smaller battles over face masks and cancel culture, violent extremist groups on the radical right have grown. Since 2008, more than 70 percent of extremist-related fatalities in the United States were committed by members of far-right or white-supremacist movements. Every form of political violence has increased in the United States over the last 10 years. Mass shootings are up and affect every part of the country: San Bernardino, Colorado Springs, Charleston, Chattanooga, Santa Barbara, Fort Hood, Newtown, Orlando, Jeffersontown, Pittsburgh, and Thousand Oaks. Hate crimes are increasing, and far more are directed at people than property. And the number of militia groups (most of them white supremacist and anti-government) has more than doubled since 2008. These are exactly the types of groups that have emerged to fight in the new twenty-first–century civil wars.

 

How serious is the threat? If the task force were to study the United States (which it is not allowed to do), it would have put the United States on a “watch list” at the end of 2020. Countries that are both anocracies and ethnically factionalized are put on a watch list to monitor. These countries have about a 4 percent annual risk of civil war. This number seems small, but it really is not. It means that every year that the country continues to have these two risk factors—every year it does not strengthen its democracy and create more inclusive political parties—the risk increases by 4 percent, to the point where the risk is extremely high. But the warning signs are also a gift. If you know the warning signs and you identify them early enough, there is time to change.

Strong, healthy democracies don’t experience civil war. They have the ability to manage change and contain the worst tendencies of human nature. The United States needs to reform its government to make it more transparent, more accountable to voters, and more equitable and inclusive of all citizens. Rather than manipulate institutions to serve a narrower and narrower group of citizens and corporate interests, the United States needs to reverse course, amplifying citizens’ voices, increasing government accountability, improving public services, and eradicating corruption. We need to make sure that all Americans are allowed to vote, that all votes count, and that, in turn, those votes influence which policies are enacted in Washington. Americans are going to regain trust in their government only when it becomes clear that it is serving them rather than lobbyists, billionaires, and a declining group of rural voters.

But we also need to address the problem of factionalism. Nothing abets and accelerates factionalism as much as social media. After January 6, people kept asking me: What should we do? Do we need better policing? Better domestic terror laws? Does the FBI need to aggressively infiltrate far-right militias? My first answer was always the same. Take away the social media bullhorn and you turn down the volume on bullies, conspiracy theorists, bots, trolls, disinformation machines, hate-mongers, and enemies of democracy. America’s collective anger would drop almost immediately, as it did when Donald Trump could no longer reach every American 20 times a day, every day. (As the journalist Matthew Yglesias noted on Twitter: “It’s kinda weird that deplatforming Trump just like completely worked with no visible downside whatsoever.”) The United States is where the social media industry was born, and it’s home to the five major tech companies that control most of the information that is spread on social media. The U.S. government regulates all kinds of industries—from utilities and drug companies to food processing plants—to promote the common good. For the sake of democracy and societal cohesion, social media platforms should be added to the list.

 

The United States is the first white majority country in the world to go through this grand demographic transformation, but it will not be the last. The world will be watching how we, as a multiethnic, multi­religious democracy, navigate this change. The declining white majority can choose to further weaken our democracy in an attempt to institutionalize minority rule, and continue to stoke racial fears. They may think that this is an attractive strategy that ensures that power will remain in their hands for generations. What they don’t realize is that this also leads them closer to civil war.

 

READ MORE:

https://newrepublic.com/article/165959/global-age-civil-war

 

 

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waving the red flag……..

 

by Elliot DownesSunday, 01 May 2022 

 

In 1915, Rosa Luxemburg wrote The Crisis of Social Democracy while in jail for her anti-war activism. In it, she criticised the leaders of the German Social Democratic Party (SPD) for betraying working-class internationalism with their support for the First World War. The pamphlet was smuggled out in April that year and published a year later. Distributed illegally under the pseudonym Junius, it’s commonly known as the Junius pamphlet.

The pamphlet remains one of the strongest indictments of war and the system that produces it. Luxemburg describes how the war ripped the mask from the face of capitalism:

“Shamed, dishonoured, wading in blood and dripping with filth, thus capitalist society stands. Not as we usually see it, playing the roles of peace and righteousness, of order, of philosophy, of ethics—but as a roaring beast, as an orgy of anarchy, as a pestilential breath, devastating culture and humanity—so it appears in all its hideous nakedness.”

Junius was also an inquest into the death of social democracy. In the lead-up to the war, the SPD had campaigned against the growing imperialist tensions and declared its opposition to the impending war. Once it broke out, however, the party’s parliamentary representatives—with the exception of Karl Liebknecht—voted for credits to fund the German war effort. “Nowhere has the organisation of the working class been yoked so completely to the service of imperialism”, Luxemburg wrote.

In backing the war, the SPD took up the positions of the ruling class and became enthusiastic proponents of German nationalism. Luxemburg demolished the party’s argument that the war was defensive, fought for democracy and liberty. In reality, the ruling classes of Western Europe had lent economic and political support to Russian absolutism. Instead of supporting the German government, Luxemburg looked to the “revolutionary forces aris[ing] from the womb of the Russian people itself to fight against Russian absolutism”.

By declaring itself in favour of “social peace” during the war, the SPD called for an end to class struggle—on the part of workers. In response to the argument that the war had created a new situation that changed everything, Luxemburg rhetorically asked:

“Have private property, capitalist exploitation and class rule ceased to exist? Or have the propertied classes in a spell of patriotic fervour declared: in view of the needs of the war we hereby turn over the means of production, the earth, the factories and the mills therein, into the possession of the people?”

Junius ends with the prophetic declaration:

“This madness will not stop, and this bloody nightmare of hell will not cease until the workers of Germany, of France, of Russia and of England will wake up out of their drunken sleep, will clasp each other’s hands in brotherhood and will drown the bestial chorus of war agitators and the hoarse cry of capitalist hyenas with the mighty cry of labour, ‘Workers of all countries, unite!’”

 

READ MORE:

https://redflag.org.au/article/rosa-luxemburgs-junius-pamphlet

 

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more unrest in the US streets?….

Will America’s streets witness a replay of 2020’s “summer of love” if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade? Will storefronts be boarded up once more, civic buildings barricaded against firebombs? Will the militant wing of the Democrats treat the nation to another orgy of looting and violence, all while the social-welfare wing winks at the barbarians or even goads them on to still greater barbarism?

The answer is almost as important as the fate of unborn life. At stake in these other questions is whether Americans will continue to permit the metastasizing of a politico-juridical order that treats certain forms of lawlessness as untouchable, even praiseworthy. The left wing of the American overclass, unquestionably stronger than the right wing, views the criminals in these cases as possessed of righteous identities or causes, which is enough to exculpate almost any savagery. If other social forces fail to check this tendency, it will tear what little remains of our social fabric and inaugurate a despotism we only began to glimpse in 2020.

 

So far, the minions of the culture of death haven’t summoned anything close to 2020-level mischief. Saint James Cathedral in Seattle has been targeted for ugly protests, so far repelled by police and security at the entrance, and pro-abortion activists cosplaying as Handsmaid’s Tale characters were likewise ushered out of a Catholic church in Los Angeles. More alarming, mobs have swarmed the homes of the conservative justices, and a Wisconsin pro-life group had its offices set alight. The assailants left a warning on the walls: “If abortions aren’t safe then you aren’t either.”

The George Floyd riots, by contrast, caused up to $2 billion in damage, and that was just in the first phase spanning May 26 to June 8, 2020. The 2020 mayhem also claimed 12 to 19 lives and left hundreds of police officers injured. I will never unsee footage of a NYPD officer deliberately run over in the early hours of June 2, 2020, in The Bronx, his body sent flying like a ragdoll. Nor will I soon forget guarding my apartment’s lobby with our doormen in East Midtown, as hundreds of thugs smashed stores on our street and eyed our building for attack.

Yet there is already a striking parallel to the aestas horribilis of 2020: The blue establishment is once more backing—or at least, tacitly approving—the domestic escalation. As the Federalist reported, some of the activists targeting churches apparently did so under the auspices of an outfit called “Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights,” which is urging supporters to wear green; Hillary Clinton tweeted out support for the green movement. Worse, outgoing White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki initially declined to condemn the mobbing of the justices’ homes (“I don’t have an official U.S. government position on where people protest.”). Only days later did she finally issue a statement reining in the party’s militant hounds.

This is incredibly dangerous stuff, but the left-liberals can’t be blamed for deploying these tactics. After all, it paid off two years ago, not just in creating scenes of chaos ahead of a national election (and thus making the incumbent look out of control), but also by fortifying the impression that they enjoy sovereignty over what counts as illegitimate violence, and what doesn’t. As the race riots broke out, the same epidemiologists who for weeks had been urging Americans to stay home now suddenly treated Black Lives Matter gatherings as almost de rigueur. That sent a potent message about the true workings of power in this country: Don’t want these quasi-legal riots to burn down your homes and small businesses? Remember to vote the right way come November.

How should the rest of us respond? By not conceding an inch to barbarism, by not trying to convince ourselves that just because the mouth-frothing vandal appears passionate, he must have at least half the truth on his side. No, it is possible to froth at the mouth and be both completely in the wrong and in need of a strong disciplinary hand.

In 1850, the Spanish statesman and reactionary writer Juan Donoso Cortés wrote of those who sowed chaos in the name of progress in his time: “The evil is not in the government; evil is in the governed. The evil is that the governed have become ungovernable.” In our time, a segment of the governed has become ungovernable in the extreme, and the trouble is that the government itself is in alliance with the ungoverned and ungovernable.

God, help us.

 

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https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/seeds-of-destruction/

 

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It is quite ludicrous that the issue of abortion is still bothering the USA. It shows how flimsy. mad and religiously bent the USA are.

And please note: god won't help you. He doesn't exist.... And note that Juan Donoso Cortés was wrong: the evil IS THE GOVERNMENT... most of the "governed would not know" the ends of a good or a bad stick... The US Government is the evil (I don't believe in evil) leading the people into believing crap... ....

 

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the christian fascists….

 

BY Chris Hedges

 

 

The Democratic Party — which had 50 years to write Roe v. Wade into law with Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama in full control of the White House and Congress at the inception of their presidencies — is banking its electoral strategy around the expected Supreme Court decision to lift the judicial prohibition on the ability of states to enact laws restricting or banning abortions. 

I doubt it will work.

The Democratic Party’s hypocrisy and duplicity is the fertilizer for Christian fascism. Its exclusive focus on the culture wars and identity politics at the expense of economic, political and social justice fueled a right-wing backlash and stoked the bigotry, racism and sexism it sought to curtail. Its opting for image over substance, including its repeated failure to secure the right to abortion, left the Democrats distrusted and reviled. 

The Biden administration invited Amazon Labor Union President Christian Smalls and union workers from Starbucks and other organizations to the White House at the same time it re-awarded a $10 billion contract to the union-busting Amazon and the National Security Agency (NSA) for cloud computing.

 

The NSA contract is one of 26 federal cloud-computing contracts Amazon has with the U.S. Army and Air Force, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of the Interior and the Census Bureau. 

Withholding the federal contracts until Amazon permitted free and open union organizing would be a powerful stand on behalf of workers, still waiting for the $15 minimum wage Joe Biden promised as a candidate. 

But behind the walls of the Democratic Party’s Potemkin village stands the billionaire class. Democrats have failed to address the structural injustices that turned America into an oligarchic state, where the obscenely rich squabble like children in a sandbox over multibillion-dollar toys. The longer this game of political theater continues, the worse things will get.  

 

The Christian Fascists

The Christian fascists have coalesced in cult-like fashion around Donald Trump. They are bankrolled by the most retrograde forces of capitalism. The capitalists permit the stupidities of the Christian fascists and their self-destructive social and cultural wars. In exchange, the billionaire class gets corporate monopolies, union busting, privatized state and municipal services — including public education — revoked government regulations, especially environmental regulation and can engage in a virtual tax boycott.

The war industry loves the Christian fascists who turn every conflict from Iraq to Ukraine into a holy crusade to crush the latest iteration of Satan. The Christian fascists believe military power, and the “manly” virtues that come with it, are blessed by God, Jesus and the Virgin Mary. No military budget is too big. No war waged by America is evil.

These Christian fascists make up perhaps 30 percent of the electorate, roughly equivalent to the percentage of Americans who believe abortion is murder. They are organized, committed to a vision, however perverse, and awash in money. 

John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Amy Coney Barrett, Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, mediocre jurists and Federalist Society ideologues who carry the banner of Christian fascism, control the Supreme Court.

The Ruling Class 

Establishment Republicans and Democrats, like George Armstrong Custer on Last Stand Hill, have circled the wagons around the Democratic Party in a desperate bid to prevent Trump, or a Trump mini-me, from returning to the White House. They, and their allies in Silicon Valley, are using algorithms and overt de-platforming to censor critics from the left and the right, foolishly turning figures like Trump, Alex Jones and Marjorie Taylor Greene into martyrs.

 

This is not a battle over democracy, but the spoils of power waged by billionaires against billionaires. No one intends to dismantle the corporate state.

The ruling class in both parties told lies about NAFTA, trade deals, “reforming” welfare, abolishing financial regulations, austerity, the Iraq war and neoliberalism that did far more damage to the American public than any lie told by Trump. 

The reptilian slime oozes out of every pore of these politicians, from Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer to Biden, who backed the 1976 Hyde Amendment banning federal funding of abortions and in 1982 voted to support a constitutional amendment that would allow states to overturn Roe v. Wade. Their hypocrisy is not lost on the public, even with their armies of consultants, pollsters, courtiers in the press, public relations teams and advertising agencies.

 

Marjorie Taylor Greene is clueless and unhinged. She claims Hillary Clinton was involved in a child mutilation and a pedophilia ring and several high-profile school shootings were staged. But weaponized, like Trump, she is a political cruise missile aimed straight at the heart of the discredited centers of traditional power.

Hate is the fuel of American politics. No one votes for who they want. They vote against those they hate. Black and brown marginal communities have suffered worse assaults than the white working class, but they have been defanged politically with militarized police that function as internal armies of occupation. The erosion of due process, the world’s largest prison system and the stripping away of all rights, including often voting rights because of felony convictions, as well as a loss of access to most social services and jobs, reduced them to a subsistence level on the lowest rung of America’s caste system. They are also the primary targets of Republican-sponsored voter suppression and redistricting.

The glue holding this Christianized fascism together is not prayer, although we will get a lot of that, but war. War is the raison d’être of all systems of totalitarianism. War justifies a constant search for internal enemies. It is used to revoke basic civil liberties and impose censorship. War demonizes those in the Middle East, Russia, or China, who are blamed for the economic and social debacles that inevitably get worse. War diverts the rage engendered by a dysfunctional state towards immigrants, people of color, feminists, liberals, artists, anyone who does not identify as a heterosexual, the press, antifa, Jews, Muslims, Russians, or Asians. Take your pick. It is a bigot’s smorgasbord. Every item on the menu is fair game.

I spent two years with the Christian right reporting and researching my book American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America. These Christian fascists have never hidden their agenda or their desire to create a “Christian” nation, any more than Adolf Hitler hid his demented vision for Germany in Mein Kampf. 

They prey, like all fascists, on the despair of their followers. They paint gruesome portraits of the end times when the longed-for obliteration of non-believers presages the glorious return of Jesus Christ. The battle at Armageddon, they believe, will be launched from the Antichrist’s worldwide headquarters in Babylon once the Jews again have control of Israel. The closer we get to Armageddon, the giddier they become.

 

These people believe this stuff, as they believe in QAnon or the election fraud that supposedly put Biden in office. They are convinced that a demonic, secular-humanist ideology propagated by the media, the United Nations, elite universities, the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the National Organization for Women, Planned Parenthood, the Trilateral Commission along with the US State Department and major foundations are seeking to destroy them.

Violence is embraced as a cleansing agent, a key component of any fascist movement. The Christian fascists do not fear nuclear war. They welcome it. The insane provocations of Russia by the Biden administration, including the decision to provide $33 billion in assistance to Ukraine, target ten Russian generals for assassination and pass on to Ukraine the intelligence to sink the Moskva, the guided missile cruiser that was the flagship of the Russian Black Sea fleet, supercharges the ideology of the Christian right. 

The marriage of the war industry, determined to make war forever, with the Christian fascists yearning for the apocalypse is terrifying.  Biden is sleepwalking us into a war with Russia and perhaps China. The Christian fascists will accelerate the bloodlust.

The political deformities we have spawned are not unique. They are the product of a society and government that no longer functions on behalf of the citizenry, one that has been seized by a tiny cabal, in our case corporate, to serve its exclusive interests. The airy promises politicians make, including the announcement by candidate Barack Obama that the first thing he would do in office was sign the Freedom of Choice Act, which during his eight years as president he never got around to doing, are worthless. 

The scheduled vote next week in the Senate on a bill asserting that abortions are legal in the United States, which is expected to be blocked by the Republican’s use of the filibuster, a Senate procedural rule that requires 60 votes to advance most legislation in the 100-member chamber, is another empty gesture.

We saw the consequences of this dysfunction in Weimar Germany and Yugoslavia, a conflict I covered for The New York Times. Political stagnation and economic misery breeds rage, despair, and cynicism. It gives rise to demagogues, charlatans, and con artists. Hatred drives political discourse. Violence is the primary form of communication. Vengeance is the highest good. War is the chief occupation of the state. It is the vulnerable and weak who pay.

 

Chris Hedges is a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist who was a foreign correspondent for 15 years for The New York Times, where he served as the Middle East bureau chief and Balkan bureau chief for the paper. He previously worked overseas for The Dallas Morning NewsThe Christian Science Monitor and NPR.  He is the host of show The Chris Hedges Report.

Author’s Note to Readers: There is now no way left for me to continue to write a weekly column for ScheerPost and produce my weekly television show without your help. The walls are closing in, with startling rapidity, on independent journalism, with the elites, including the Democratic Party elites, clamoring for more and more censorship. Bob Scheer, who runs ScheerPost on a shoestring budget, and I will not waiver in our commitment to independent and honest journalism, and we will never put ScheerPost behind a paywall, charge a subscription for it, sell your data or accept advertising. Please, if you can, sign up at chrishedges.substack.com so I can continue to post my Monday column on ScheerPost and produce my weekly television show, “The Chris Hedges Report.”

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The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.

 

 

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https://consortiumnews.com/2022/05/09/chris-hedges-jesus-endless-war-us-fascism/

 

 

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another one …..

A gunman dressed in combat fatigues and body armour has opened fire in a crowded Buffalo supermarket, leaving 10 people dead and three wounded in what authorities have identified as a racially motivated attack.

Police in Buffalo, an industrial hub in upstate New York near the Canadian border, took the 22-year-old shooter into custody after tackling him as appeared to be preparing to take his own life.

Witnesses said a young white man entered the supermarket, unshouldered a rifle and opened fire without warning.

The suspect was identified as Payton Gendron of Conklin, southeast of Buffalo in the state of New York, two law enforcement officials told The Associated Press.

Investigators believe Gendron may have been live-streaming the shooting and were scanning social media to determine if he had posted a manifesto online, the official said.

Officials said 11 of the victims are black and two are white. The shooting happened in a predominantly black neighbourhood.

The supermarket is in a predominantely black residential neighbourhood, about five kilometres north of downtown Buffalo.

Braedyn Kephart and Shane Hill, both 20, pulled into the parking lot just as the shooter was exiting.

“He was standing there with the gun to his chin. We were like what the heck is going on? Why does this kid have a gun to his face?” Kephart said.

“He ripped off his helmet, dropped his gun, and was tackled by the police.”

New York State Governor Kathy Hochul tweeted that she was “closely monitoring the shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo,” her hometown.

She said state officials have offered help to local authorities. The Erie County Sheriff’s Office said on social media that it ordered all available personnel to assist Buffalo police.

The shooting came little more than a year after a March 2021 attack at a King Soopers grocery in Boulder, Colorado, that killed 10 people. Investigators have not released any information about why they believe the man charged in that attack targeted the supermarket.

-AAP

 

 

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https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/us-news/2022/05/15/buffalo-gunman-lethal-rampage/

 

 

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