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Showing posts from April, 2016

Why Hillary Clinton truly represents an obsolete system

... and why Bernie Sanders shows that Millennials could be the generation that is about to demolish it
by system failure
The recent victory of Hillary Clinton in New York, as well as these in a series of states after, leave little room for someone to be optimistic about a miracle by Bernie Sanders. Although it's not over yet, the odds for him to win the nomination of the Democratic Party have been reduced significantly.
However, there are many who believe that Bernie's political revolution has just started, and they are probably right. In fact, the totally-pro-establishment Democratic Party probably has made a huge mistake already, by letting Bernie to enter as a Trojan Horse inside, and start the demolition of this brutal neoliberal establishment.
The lobbyists of the Democratic Party probably underestimated Bernie's ability to mobilize millions of Americans and especially the young people against the establishment. This means that people make the difference, Bernie is only t…

FBI could soon legally hack any computer in the US ... and possibly beyond

The Supreme Court approved new rules on Thursday that would potentially give the FBI the authority to hack any computer in the United States, and potentially computers located overseas as well. Those hidden by Tor technology will also be vulnerable. Now the Congress have until December 1 to either approve the rule, reject or make changes to it – then any magistrate judge in the country could grant the FBI warrants authorizing hacks into computers whose whereabouts are unknown.
[...]
Under the phrase “concealed through technological means,” the court is referring to computers whose location is hidden via the use of anonymity software such as the Tor web browser.
Currently, magistrate judges cannot issue warrants for “remote searches” to the FBI if law enforcement doesn’t know where a computer in question is physically located, since its location could potentially be outside of the court’s jurisdiction.
Not only does the new rule change that, it also could allow the FBI to gain access to co…

Pulitzer Prize winner denounces the coup in Brazil

Short notices about the new Brazilian coup
Τhe Pulitzer winner [photographer Mauricio Lima] contrasted the “very high level professionals in journalism here” – those gathered at the ceremony in New York – with the media outlets in Brazil openly inciting street protests and agitating for the exit of the elected president. To underscore the point, he held up a sign that read “Golpe: Nunca Mais” – “Coup: Never Again” – with the “o” in “Golpe” replaced by the logo of Globo, Brazil’s largest and most influential media outlet that spent 20 years cheering the 1964 coup and military dictatorship that followed, and which has spent the last year flagrantly using its multiple media properties to propagandize in favor of Dilma’s impeachment.
Brazil’s media has completely lost control of the narrative internationally, but also increasingly within Brazil. Their sleazy plan to install as president the corruption-tainted, deeply unpopular, oligarch-serving Vice President Michel Temer – who just this w…

Newly independent Greece had an odious debt round her neck

Since 2010, Greece has been the centre of attention. Yet this debt crisis, mainly the work of private banks, is nothing new in the history of independent Greece. The lives of Greeks have been blighted by major debt crises no less than four times since 1826. Each time, the European powers have connived together to force Greece to contract new debts to repay the previous ones. This coalition of powers dictated policies to Greece that served their own interests and those of a few big private banks they favoured. Each time, those policies were designed to free up enough fiscal resources to service the debt by reducing social spending and public investment. Thus Greece and her people have, in a variety of ways, been denied the exercise of their sovereign rights, keeping Greece down with the status of a subordinate, peripheral country. The local ruling classes complied with this.
This series of articles analyses the four major crises of Greek indebtedness, placing them in their international…

Neoliberalism – the ideology at the root of all our problems

Financial meltdown, environmental disaster and even the rise of Donald Trump – neoliberalism has played its part in them all. Why has the left failed to come up with an alternative?
by George Monbiot
PART 1
Imagine if the people of the Soviet Union had never heard of communism. The ideology that dominates our lives has, for most of us, no name. Mention it in conversation and you’ll be rewarded with a shrug. Even if your listeners have heard the term before, they will struggle to define it. Neoliberalism: do you know what it is?
Its anonymity is both a symptom and cause of its power. It has played a major role in a remarkable variety of crises: the financial meltdown of 2007-8, the offshoring of wealth and power, of which the Panama Papers offer us merely a glimpse, the slow collapse of public health and education, resurgent child poverty, the epidemic of loneliness, the collapse of ecosystems, the rise of Donald Trump. But we respond to these crises as if they emerge in isolation, appare…

At least 50 people killed in overnight airstrike on Aleppo hospital

War Crimes
Air strikes hit a hospital in a rebel-held area of Syria’s Aleppo and killed at least 27 people, including three children and the city’s last paediatrician, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Thursday.
A new wave of aerial bombing on Thursday on rebel-held districts of the city killed at least 30 more civilians, a rescue worker said. The Observatory put the toll at least 20.
In government-held areas, rebel mortar shelling killed at least 14 people, the Britain-based Observatory and Syria’s state news agency SANA reported.
The bombed Al Quds hospital was supported by international medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), which said it was destroyed after being hit by a direct air strike that killed at least three doctors.
Bebars Mishal of the Civil Defence in Aleppo told Reuters that 40 people had been killed in a five-storey building next to the hospital.
More:
http://gulfnews.com/news/mena/syria/27-killed-as-air-strikes-hit-aleppo-hospital-1.1814346
Update:
The …

Τώρα και στην Ελλάδα: Το άδικο φορολογικό σύστημα αυξάνει την ανισότητα στη Λατινική Αμερική

globinfo freexchange
Πρόσφατη έρευνα δείχνει, ότι το άδικο φορολογικό σύστημα είναι σε ένα σημαντικό βαθμό υπεύθυνο για τη συσσώρευση πλούτου και την αυξανόμενη ανισότητα στη Λατινική Αμερική. Από το prensa-rebelde:
Η συγκέντρωση του πλούτου στο 10% του πληθυσμού της Λατινικής Αμερικής και της Καραϊβικής οξύνει την ανισότητα στην περιοχή, επιβεβαιώνει μια έκθεση που παρουσίασε η Oικονομική Επιτροπή για τη Λατινική Αμερική και την Καραϊβική (Cepal) του ΟΗΕ.
Σύμφωνα με την ανάλυση “Φορολογία για μια ολοκληρωμένη ανάπτυξη”, που πραγματοποιήθηκε από κοινού με την μη κυβερνητική οργάνωση Οxfam, αυτό το 10% κατέχει το 71% του πλούτου και πληρώνει μόνο το 5,4% φόρο από τα εισόδηματά του και αυτό είναι που “βρίσκεται στην καρδιά της ανισότητας”, μετέδωσε ο ρεπόρτερ του πρακτορείου Prensa Latina στον ΟΗΕ και την Οxfarm που βρέθηκε στην Χιλιανή πρωτεύουσα για το 28ο Περιφερειακό Σεμινάριο Φορολογικής Πολιτικής.
[...]
Το ντοκουμέντο επισημαί…

New study shows mass surveillance breeds meekness, fear and self-censorship

A newly published study from Oxford’s Jon Penney provides empirical evidence for a key argument long made by privacy advocates: that the mere existence of a surveillance state breeds fear and conformity and stifles free expression. Reporting on the study, the Washington Post this morning described this phenomenon: “If we think that authorities are watching our online actions, we might stop visiting certain websites or not say certain things just to avoid seeming suspicious.
The new study documents how, in the wake of the 2013 Snowden revelations (of which 87% of Americans were aware), there was “a 20 percent decline in page views on Wikipedia articles related to terrorism, including those that mentioned ‘al-Qaeda,’ 'car bomb’ or ‘Taliban.'” People were afraid to read articles about those topics because of fear that doing so would bring them under a cloud of suspicion. The dangers of that dynamic were expressed well by Penney: “If people are spooked or deterred from learning ab…

WikiLeaks vs MainstreamLeaks on Panama Papers

WikiLeaks took to Twitter to criticize what the organization describes as the continued “censorship” of the Panama Papers archive by the organizations and reporters who control the contents of the leak.
The massive archive of 2.6 terabytes of financial data leaked from Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca is controlled by German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, and hundreds of journalists who have been selected to write about the archive’s contents.
The Panama Papers exposed the efforts the world’s wealthiest people, including more than a dozen world leaders, take to hide their earnings from tax authorities. The release caused upheaval in Iceland’s government and protests in the United Kingdom.
A growing number of international authorities are demanding access to the archive, according to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, including a German finance minister and representatives of the U.S. Justice Department. But ICIJ’s director …

Intense protests against anti-labor reform continue in France

Police officers have clashed with protesters and deployed tear gas in several French cities, according to local media. Arrests were made as thousands of people took to the streets to continue demonstrations against labor reforms.
Photos posted on Twitter showed demonstrators making their way through clouds of tear gas as they marched through the streets of several French cities, including Nantes, Lyon, Rennes, and Paris. In Rennes, police deployed tear gas on demonstrators throwing projectiles on a street leading to the square of the Parliament of Brittany.
About 9,000 demonstrators gathered on the streets of Nantes, according to police. An image posted on Twitter showed a Porsche and a scooter which had been set on fire. Windows could also be seen smashed across the city.
The mayor of Nantes, Johanna Rolland, has condemned the incidents as "unacceptable acts of small groups whose express purpose is to commit violence," French news outlet 20 Minutes reported. A photo from Quim…

Newly independent Greece had an odious debt round her neck

Since 2010, Greece has been the centre of attention. Yet this debt crisis, mainly the work of private banks, is nothing new in the history of independent Greece. The lives of Greeks have been blighted by major debt crises no less than four times since 1826. Each time, the European powers have connived together to force Greece to contract new debts to repay the previous ones. This coalition of powers dictated policies to Greece that served their own interests and those of a few big private banks they favoured. Each time, those policies were designed to free up enough fiscal resources to service the debt by reducing social spending and public investment. Thus Greece and her people have, in a variety of ways, been denied the exercise of their sovereign rights, keeping Greece down with the status of a subordinate, peripheral country. The local ruling classes complied with this.
This series of articles analyses the four major crises of Greek indebtedness, placing them in their international…

Pregnant woman gunned down by Israeli soldiers at checkpoint

Israeli soldiers shot and killed, on Wednesday, a Palestinian mother of two, who was also five months pregnant, and her brother, at the Qalandia terminal, north of occupied Jerusalem.
The soldiers fired more than fifteen bullets targeting the woman, and prevented Palestinian medics from approaching the two.
The Palestinian Health Ministry said the slain woman has been identified as Maram Saleh Abu Ismael, 24, from Beit Surik town, north of occupied Jerusalem; five-months pregnant and a mother of two daughters identified as Sarah and Rimas.
More:
http://www.mintpressnews.com/israeli-soldiers-kill-pregnant-woman-brother-qalandia-terminal/215974/

Concentración de la riqueza aumenta la desigualdad en Latinoamérica

Según el análisis Tributación para un crecimiento inclusivo, el 10 % de la población en la región posee el 71 % de la riqueza y tributa solo el 5,4 % de su renta
La concentración de la riqueza en el 10 % de la población de América Latina y el Caribe atiza la desigualdad en la región, asegura un informe presentado por la Cepal.
Según el análisis Tributación para un crecimiento inclusivo, realizado de conjunto con la organización no gubernamental Oxfam, ese 10 % posee el 71 % de la riqueza y tributa solo el 5,4 % de su renta, lo cual “está en el corazón de la desigualdad”.
El reporte de la agencia de Naciones Unidas y la Oxfam, fue difundido este jueves a propósito del XXVIII Seminario Regional de Política Fiscal, que concluyó en esta capital, informa PL.
Alicia Bárcena, secretaria ejecutiva de la Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (Cepal), destacó que salvaguardar los avances ya logrados por la región y garantizar un crecimiento inclusivo y sostenible deben ser prioridades.

Commission fails to regulate new GMOs after intense US lobbying

Corporate Europe Observatory
The European Commission has shelved a legal opinion confirming that genetically modified organisms (GMOs) produced through gene-editing and other new techniques fall under EU GMO law, following pressure from the US government. A series of internal Commission documents obtained under freedom of information rules reveal intense lobbying by US representatives for the EU to disregard its GMO rules, which require safety testing and labelling.
The documents show that US pressure is focussed on potential barriers to trade from the application of EU GMO law. They suggest that the EU should ignore health and environmental safeguards on GMOs to pave the way for a transatlantic trade agreement.
This briefing exposes lobbying by the US government during a crucial period, at the end of 2015, as revealed in pre-meeting briefings and correspondence released by the Commission:
http://corporateeurope.org/sites/default/files/20160421_br_us_lobbying_on_new_gmos_final…

Luxembourg puts whistleblowers on trial for ruining its tax haven

Luxembourg is trying to throw two French whistleblowers and a journalist in prison for their role in the “LuxLeaks” exposé that revealed the tiny country’s outsized role in enabling corporate tax avoidance.
The trial of Antoine Deltour and Raphael Halet, two former employees of the international accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, and journalist Edouard Perrin began Tuesday.
Deltour and Halet were charged in connection with theft of PwC documents. Perrin is charged as an accomplice for steering Halet toward documents that he considered of particular interest.
Perrin, a reporter with Premières Lignes Television in Paris, produced the first LuxLeaks reporting. PwC documents were later obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and, together with records from other accounting giants, formed the basis for the 2014 “LuxLeaks” series involving over 80 journalists across the world.
Among the many prominent supporters of the defendants, France’s Finance Minister Mic…

Former tax lobbyists are writing the rules on tax dodging

The secret tax dodging strategies of the global elite in China, Russia, Brazil, the U.K., and beyond were exposed in speculator fashion by the recent Panama Papers investigation, fueling a worldwide demand for a crackdown on tax avoidance.
But there is little appetite in Congress for taking on powerful tax dodgers in the U.S., where the practice has become commonplace.
A request for comment about the Panama Papers to the two congressional committees charged with tax policy — House Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committee — was ignored.
The reluctance by congressional leaders to tackle tax dodging is nothing new, especially given that some of the largest companies paying little to no federal taxes are among the biggest campaign contributors in the country. But there’s another reason to remain skeptical that Congress will move aggressively on tax avoidance: Former tax lobbyists now run the tax-writing committees.
Full report:
https://theintercept.com/2016/04/27/congress-tax-lobbyists/

Newly independent Greece had an odious debt round her neck

Since 2010, Greece has been the centre of attention. Yet this debt crisis, mainly the work of private banks, is nothing new in the history of independent Greece. The lives of Greeks have been blighted by major debt crises no less than four times since 1826. Each time, the European powers have connived together to force Greece to contract new debts to repay the previous ones. This coalition of powers dictated policies to Greece that served their own interests and those of a few big private banks they favoured. Each time, those policies were designed to free up enough fiscal resources to service the debt by reducing social spending and public investment. Thus Greece and her people have, in a variety of ways, been denied the exercise of their sovereign rights, keeping Greece down with the status of a subordinate, peripheral country. The local ruling classes complied with this.
This series of articles analyses the four major crises of Greek indebtedness, placing them in their international…

Fears of terrorist nuke attack after power plant hacked in Germany

A German nuclear power plant found its network implanted with viruses which could allow remote access to equipment for moving nuclear fuel rods. The major security breach occurred at the Gundremmingen nuclear power plant, 75 miles northwest of Munich, after malware was found on 18 removable data drives.
The W32.Ramnit and Conficker viruses were discovered on the drives — malware which could be used to obtain sensitive nuclear fuel data. W32.Ramnit allows hackers access to files and, potentially, physical control over systems; terrorists could access the information and use it to build a radioactive ‘dirty' bomb.
According to officials, the plant is isolated from the Internet, and, as such, no online theft could occur.
[...]
The two Brussels bombers hid a camera near the home of the research and development director of the Belgian Nuclear Programme. Police assumed the two were planning a kidnapping to gain access to the highly-sensitive atomic site.
Another warning sign was the discover…

Common struggles: Greeks for the mass movement of Bernie Sanders!

globinfo freexchange

The initiative "Greeks for the mass movement of Bernie Sanders" has come to cover a gap: that of the information of the Greek public opinion for the historically important movement, created by the unprecedented popular support of the effort by Bernie Sanders to claim the nomination of the Democratic Party for the US presidential elections.
That's because the - global, not only in Greece - methodical absence of adequate and objective information concerning the mobilization of millions of American citizens on the side of Bernie Sanders, deprives from the Greek public opinion its right to shape its own opinion, without any interference, in order to realize that the struggles of the Greek people converge with those of the mass, radical movement that supports Bernie Sanders! Realize that these are common struggles!
All these, having in mind that Bernie is and was a steady supporter of the rights and struggles of the Greek people, like no other foreign politi…

Washington launches its attack against BRICS

by Paul Craig Roberts
Having removed the reformist President of Argentina, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Washington is now disposing of the reformist President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff.
Washington used a federal judge to order Argentina to sacrifice its debt restructuring program in order to pay US vulture funds the full value of defaulted Argentine bonds that the vulture funds had bought for a few pennies on the dollar. These vultures were called “creditors” who had made “loans” regardless of the fact that they were not creditors and had made no loans. They were opportunists after easy money and were used by Washington to get rid of a reformist government.
President Kirchner resisted and, thus, she had to go. Washington concocted a story that Kirchner covered up an alleged Iranian bombing in Buenos Aires in 1994. This implausible fantasy, for which there is no evidence of Iranian involvement, was fed to one of Washington’s agents in the state prosecutor’s office, and a dubious event…