Friday, July 3, 2015

teleSUR — Ecuador Government Reveals More Details on Opposition Violence

Ecuador’s Justice Minister provided further details on the violent attacks by opponents of the government that took place on Thursday night during protests in the nation's capital. 
The violence followed revelations that the right-wing opposition supporters, in collaboration with former Chief of Military Intelligence, were seeking to use Thursday's protests as cover to take over the presidential palace as part of actions that also included blockading the nation's major airports, as well as the bridges located on the Colombian and Peruvian borders....
The Minister said that despite attempts by the right-wing to force out the Correa government “we will continue in this process of change in the country” In recent weeks, a wave of opposition protests, initially only calling for the ending of new tax laws on the wealthiest, have increasingly turned violent, with many demanding the ousting of the Correa government. President Correa announced June 15 the temporary withdrawal of the tax laws and the start of a national dialogue on the future of the Ecuadorean economy.
teleSUR
Ecuador Government Reveals More Details on Opposition Violence

teleSUR spoke to some of the thousands of people who filled the plaza, to support the government of President Rafael Correa in the face of right-wing destabilization attempts. Michelle Moreano told teleSUR English, "Coup plotters will not come near us. This is something that was planned a long time ago. President Correa already knew about this. And we are the people here defending this revolution, defending what is ours, principally what are the inheritance and capital gains laws.
Because this does not affect the middle class. It is only 2% of the population." Government supporter Moises Obando told teleSUR English, “The opposition will never be able to break through these barriers which we, the Ecuadorean people, have put up. They are against millions of Ecuadoreans who support this process of the Citizen's Revolution. This is a government which has served the interests of the poorest, of the oppressed, and of the popular classes."

Meanwhile, leaders of the opposition such as Mayor of Guayaquil Jaime Nebot, Mayor of Quito Mauricio Rodas and head of the Azuay province government Paul Carrasco met in Guayaquil Thursday and told the press that they are planning for marches to continue following the visit of Pope Francis to the country from July 5 to 8. Mayor of Quito Mauricio Rodas told the press, "If they are not able to respond to the demands of the people of Quito and of other cities in Ecuador, if the voices of citizens are not taken into account, if they are not considered, or valued, we will convoke a massive march in the city of Quito."
Correa Supporters Defiant as Opposition Violence Hits Quito

The same playbill in different countries headed by left-wing governments.
Furthermore, evidence from WikiLeaks cables show that those who are heading today's protests in Ecuador are closely linked to the U.S. government and intelligence services....
For several years now, left-wing and progressive movements and parties have been gaining ground throughout the region.
With the failure of neoliberal policies that were applied throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s, the right wing has found itself isolated as the mainstream consensus drifts to the left.
Largely divided and debilitated, the right wing throughout the region is beginning to re-accommodate, to re-organize, and to understand the current situation and the ways in which it can go back to power — by any means necessary.
Correa has put forward the theory that violence is being deliberately employed in order to provoke a response from security officials in order to accuse the government of having violated civil rights in order to invite foreign intervention in the form of sanctions, as was done to Venezuela in earlier this year when the U.S. government labeled Venezuela as a threat to its national security.
President Correa has warned that coups are still a very real threat in the region and violent street protests are part of a coordinated and deliberate campaign by right-wing forces in the region to destabilize the progressive and revolutionary governments of Latin America.
Ecuador's Opposition and Right-Wing Strategies in the Region

TASS — Putin: Russia coming under pressure for not bargaining its sovereignty


Translation: Back off.

TASS
Putin: Russia coming under pressure for not bargaining its sovereignty

Steve Randy Waldman — Greece


SRW is outraged and rightly so.

Interfluidity
Greece
Steve Randy Waldman

Sputnik — BRICS to Become Key Element in Global Authority - Russian Foreign Minister

Decisions made during the upcoming BRICS summit in Ufa should give a jumpstart to the organization in becoming one of the key elements in global authority, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday....

“We are convinced that the decisions that will be made there will give additional impulse to the future formation of BRICS as one of the key elements in the system of global authority on a modern level,” Lavrov said during a meeting with a BRICS youth forum.
Lavrov said that BRICS is a group that does not combine its efforts against others, but “concentrates on moving forward a positive and united agenda.”
The BRICS countries make up about 40 percent of the world's population and a combined nominal GPD of about $16 trillion....
Sputnik
BRICS to Become Key Element in Global Authority - Russian Foreign Minister

Sputnik — Obama: US Should Set Rules for World Economy

The United States should write the economic rules for the rest of the world since it enjoys the strongest growth, President Barack Obama said in a speech at the University of Wisconsin in La Crosse on Thursday.
“At a moment where our economy is in a position of global strength, because we are going faster than most other countries, advanced countries, we have to write the economic rules for the global economy before countries like China do,” Obama stated.
Say what?

Sputnik

Sputnik — WikiLeaks: TISA to Block Other Deals Aiming to Boost Developing Economies

The government procurement section of the published TISA documents “makes the new risks from TISA to governments’ right to regulate in their national interest much clearer,” University of Auckland Law Professor Jane Kelsey wrote in a legal analysis of the document for WikiLeaks.

The terms of the treaty document would allow powerful multinational corporations in major industrial nations to “bypass other governments in the World Trade Organization (WTO), and rewrite its services agreement in the interests of their corporations,” Kelsey warned.
Sputnik
WikiLeaks: TISA to Block Other Deals Aiming to Boost Developing Economies

RT — 100 percent in/out choice given to Greece is ‘false dilemma’ – euro architect to RT

There is a third solution in store for Greece, it could have two currencies in parallel that would stabilize the economy, Bernard Lietaer, co-designer of the European currency, told RT.
“Greece could be participant in the euro for tourism and shipping which are the largest sectors of the economy. At the same time it could have some new drachma which is playing by different rules and which is providing capacity to reanimate the economy at the grassroots level,” he said.
There have already been precedents of countries having two currencies, according to Lietaer....
RT
100 percent in/out choice given to Greece is ‘false dilemma’ – euro architect to RT

See also

Interview with Bernard Lietaer

‘No reason why Greece could not have two currencies’ - a euro architect


Alex Andreou — How Europe Played Greece


The mask is off neoliberalism. It's the new fascism.
The ECB has acted to asphyxiate the Greek economy - the ultimate blackmail to force subordination. The money is there, in our accounts, but we cannot have access to it, because the overseers of our own banking system, the very people who some months ago issued guarantees of liquidity, have decided to deny liquidity. We have phantom money, but no real money. There is a terrifying poetry to that, since the entire crisis was caused by too much phantom money in the first place.
EU Institutions are now openly admitting that their aim is regime change. A coup d'état in anything by name, using banks instead of tanks and a corrupt media as the occupiers' broadcaster. The rest of Europe stands back and watches. Those leaders who promised the Syriza government support before the election, have ducked for cover. I understand it. They sympathise, but they don't want to be next. They are honourable cowards. They look at the punishment beating being meted out and their instinct is to protect their own.
Byline
Alex Andreou
ht Don quijones at Raging Bull-Shit

See also

Truthout | Interview (11 September 2014)
An Economic Hit Man Speaks Out: John Perkins on How Greece Has Fallen Victim to "Economic Hit Men"
Michael Nevradakis interviews John Perkins

John Perkins, Greece: A Prophecy Fulfilled? (2 July 2015)

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard — Greece's Yanis Varoufakis prepares for economic siege as companies issue private currencies


Europe launches an economic war against Greece. US-led NATO, pledged to come to the aid of Greece if attacked, sits it out.
Greece has stockpiled enough reserves of fuel and pharmaceutical supplies to withstand a long siege, and has set aside emergency funding to cover all the country's vitally-needed food imports.
Yanis Varoufakis, the Greek finance minister, said the left-Wing Syriza government is still working on the assumption that Europe's creditor powers will return to the negotiating table if the Greek people don't agree to their austerity demands in a referendum on Sunday.
"Luckily we have six months stocks of oil and four months stocks of pharmaceuticals," he told The Telegraph.
Mr Varoufakis said a special five-man committee from the Greek treasury, the Bank of Greece, the trade unions and the private banks is working feverishly in a "war room" near his office allocating precious reserves for top priorities.
Food has been exempted from an import freeze since capital controls were introduced last weekend. Grains, meats, dairy products, and other foodstuffs should be able to enter the country freely, averting a potential disaster as the full tourist season kicks off....
Businesses in Thessaloniki and other parts of the country are already creating parallel private currencies to keep trade alive and alleviate an acute shortage of liquidity....
This would be funny if it weren't pathetic.
The Greek crisis is likely to come to a head one way or another soon after the referendum. The European Central Bank is expected to restore emergency liquidity for the Greek banking system almost immediately if there is a "yes", an outcome likely to trigger the downfall of the Syriza government and the creation of a national unity administration.

The ECB has given strong hints that it will tighten the tourniquet yet further if there is a "no" vote - probably by raising collateral requirement - pushing Greek banks that it also regulates towards the abyss. This is a legal minefield since the ECB has a treaty duty to uphold financial stability. Syriza has said it will consider legal action at the European Court of Justice if this occurs....
The Telegraph
Greece's Yanis Varoufakis prepares for economic siege as companies issue private currencies
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard



If the Greeks vote "YES" in Sunday's referendum then I am done defending them. I have no sympathy left for them. They will have gotten what they deserve.


I barely have any sympathy left for the Greeks anyway. What a bunch of dumb shits the way they have been handling this disaster. And this from a nation with such an amazing history. They gave so much to the world: Socrates, Aristotle, Plato, Archimedes, Hippocrates, Pythagoras.

Alexander the Great must be rolling over in his grave!

If they vote "YES" on Sunday that's it, I am done with them. They get what they fucking deserve.

I feel the same way about poor, dumb, Southerners here in America. I hope they stay poor and dumb because that's what they fucking deserve, too, for voting Republican.

Morons.

Paul Taylor — Exclusive: Europeans tried to block IMF debt report on Greece: sources

Euro zone countries tried in vain to stop the IMF publishing a gloomy analysis of Greece's debt burden which the leftist government says vindicates its call to voters to reject bailout terms, sources familiar with the situation said on Friday....
Reuters
Exclusive: Europeans tried to block IMF debt report on Greece: sources
Paul Taylor
ht Clonal

The Saker — They are also heroes of Novorussia , Russia and even the world


A nice testimonial by Saker. BTW, these people are volunteers work for free.

The Vineyard of the Saker
They are also heroes of Novorussia , Russia and even the world
The Saker

Russia Insider — Samantha Power Lies to Congress About Civilian Shelling in Ukraine, Commits Felony (Video)

  • The US Ambassador to the UN, she claims she believes majority of civilian shelling casualties are victims of the separatists.
  • The penalty for lying to Congress is up to 8 years of imprisonment.
Uh, they got one of the above points wrong. 

Officials are privileged by custom to lie to Congress without penalty when they do so in the interest of policy.

Alana Goodman — ADL Poll: 85% of Greeks Believe the Jews Have Too Much Power Over Global Finance

A new poll by the Anti-Defamation League found that the majority of Greeks continue to hold anti-Semitic views about Jewish control over finance and the global economy, despite a recent drop in anti-Jewish attitudes in other parts of Europe.
Greece—which faces the prospect of economic default at midnight on Wednesday—surpasses Iran and trails just slightly behind Turkey in the percentage of its residents who hold anti-Semitic views.
In total, 67 percent of Greek respondents agreed with the majority of a list of anti-Semitic statements included in the survey. Other European countries, particularly France and Germany, have experienced a decrease in overall anti-Semitic attitudes in the wake of recent attacks on Jews.
According to the ADL poll, 90 percent of Greeks agreed with the statement that “Jews have too much power in the business world” and 85 percent agreed “Jews have too much power in international finance markets.”

In addition, 70 percent said that “Jews still talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust” and 51 percent said “Jews don’t care about what happens to anyone but their own kind.”

Over one-quarter of respondents also said they believe the number of Jews reported to have died in the Holocaust has been “greatly exaggerated.” One-third said Jews are “responsible for most of the world’s wars” and 41 percent agreed that “People hate Jews because of the way Jews behave.”
Still think that Greece isn't ripe for a rightist government?

The Washington Free Beacon
ADL Poll: 85% of Greeks Believe the Jews Have Too Much Power Over Global Finance
Alana Goodman

Harvey J. Kaye — Social Democracy Is 100% American


More weekend reading.

The Democratic Establishment has a memory lapse.
For some time we have feared that Republican politicians were losing their minds. Now it seems we must worry, as well, that Democratic politicians are losing their memories. Appearing late last week on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri insisted that Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont “is too liberal to gather enough votes in this country to become president.” Indeed, responding to the fact that candidate Sanders is not only drawing big, enthusiastic crowds to campaign events in Iowa and New Hampshire, but also pulling within 10 points of frontrunner and party favorite Hillary Clinton in certain state polls, McCaskill said: “It’s not unusual for someone who has an extreme message to have a following.”
Extreme? McCaskill’s remarks indicate that we may be in more trouble than we thought. For some time we have feared that Republican politicians were losing their minds. Now it seems we must worry, as well, that Democratic politicians are losing their memories.
Neoliberal lunacy as the new political mantra.
Senator McCaskill’s attack on Senator Sanders appears to have been launched on behalf of the Clinton campaign. Its rationale rests on the belief that, in the light of the past 40 years of conservative ascendancy and liberal retreat, her words were simple common sense: Aren’t we, as the talking heads tell us, a center-right nation?
Well, no, we are emphatically not. And it is regrettable that by swallowing this myth, the present leadership of the Democratic Party, embodied in the Democratic National Committee has, in election after election, shrunk from some of the party’s best traditions in order to keep up in the race for campaign cash, even to the extent of marginalizing and openly scorning what is described as its “left wing.” ...
Moyers & Co.
Social Democracy Is 100% American
Harvey J. Kaye | Ben & Joyce Rosenberg Professor of Democracy and Justice Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

Jörg Bibow — Euro Union – Quo Vadis?

No doubt Greece is in crisis, in economic, political, and humanitarian crisis. But the actual crisis in Europe today runs much deeper and is bound to ultimately tear the continent apart unless the actual fractures that undermine the euro finally get addressed....
Europe used to see itself as the beacon of democracy in the world. But democracy appears to be the ultimate victim of the crisis of the euro currency union, as one people turns against another. The euro as a means to prosperity turned out to be a pipe dream. As a flawed and dysfunctional currency union, it is impoverishing the continent instead. For how much longer will it be a means to secure peace then? 
What is to be done?
Most importantly, in dealing with the legacies of their joint blunders in solidarity, they need to look towards the future and remember what the European ideal was all about. It is high time to re-launch the euro on a sounder footing, beginning with organizing investment [that increases demand] rather than insane austerity [that reduces demand]. 
Through joint investment into their common future Europeans need to refocus on striving for higher productivity, efficiency, and living standards – rather than getting entrapped in a race to the bottom in the name of “competitiveness” (misconceived as underbidding each other in terms of wages and social protection). For Europe there isn’t all that much room to fall further from here without unleashing mayhem. Greece may be the final wake-up call.
Multiplier Effect
Euro Union – Quo Vadis?
Jörg Bibow | Professor of Economics at Skidmore College and a Research Associate at the Levy Institute at Bard College

Mark Thoma — The Problem with Completely Free Markets


Some weekend reading.

Econ 101 — because some people need constant reminding of the difference between so-called free markets and genuinely competitive markets. 

Mark Thoma reminds that government institutions and supervision are required for competitive markets. Markets "free" of government "intrusion" are not likely to be competitive, and imperfect competition constitutes market failure, e.g., rent extraction based artificial market power.

The Fiscal Times | Opinion
The Problem with Completely Free Markets
Mark Thoma | Professor of Economics, University of Oregon

Stavros Mavroudeas — The Greek Referendum and the Tasks of the Left

For six months, after its January 2015 election victory, the SYRIZA government began negotiations with the EU. In these negotiations SYRIZA was confronted with the stubborn and increasing intransigence of EU and its companion institutions (the ECB and the IMF). SYRIZA very soon accepted the logic and the structure of the troika program; that is the Economic Adjustment Program for Greece popularly called the Memorandum. 
It simply tried to modify it by making it less front-loaded (i.e. delaying the implementation of reductions in pensions and hidden wage cuts, reducing fiscal primary surplus targets and thus making fiscal policy less austere). It also asked for facilitating debt servicing (by rolling back debt, leveraging and ‘financial engineering’) and an increase in aid funds (through the fictitious Juncker plan) that would help to jumpstart the moribund after 6 years of austerity Greek economy. Last, it shyly asked for some commitment for a future reduction of the Greek debt. 
The EU, as soon it diagnosed this conciliatory mood by SYRIZA and since the whole game was played in its ground, begun pressing it for additional concessions. The more that SYRIZA slide towards capitulation the more the EU demanded. In the end it was politically infeasible for SYRIZA to accept all of EU’s demands, even despite its humiliating compromises and its blatant betrayal of even its mediocre electoral program. This led to the breakdown of the negotiations and the call, by the SYRIZA government, of a referendum on the troika’s demands.
The breakdown of the negotiations between Greece and the EU proved beyond doubt the true nature of the EU: it is the enforcers of the interests and prerogatives of the dominant capitalist powers of Europe. It imposes neoliberal austerity policies on the people and weaker countries of Europe for the benefit of capitalist profits.
Moreover, the negotiations’ breakdown demonstrates the unrealistic character of the SYRIZA government program for a ‘decent compromise’ with the EU that would be ‘neither a clash nor a capitulation’ and for ‘staying in the Eurozone at any cost’. If you want to stay in the Eurozone and the EU you have to capitulate to the demands of its dominant powers. There is no other way. Thus, even the 47-pages long SYRIZA proposal for a milder version of the troika austerity program was indignantly rejected....
SYRIZA failed not only strategically but also tactically....
SYRIZA did not acquire control of the central bank and also accepted or even appointed several ‘men of the system’ in the directorship of commercial banks and other crucial public enterprises. SYRIZA emptied the state coffers by stupidly paying all the due tranches to IMF and the international creditors. Thus, once the referendum was called the EU, in close co-operation with the Greek bourgeoisie, created a condition of asphyxia for the banking sector and obliged SYRIZA to impose very severe capital controls on the very day that the huge mass of Greece’s badly paid pensioners (that support also another big portion of the population) were paid....
Counterpunch
The Greek Referendum and the Tasks of the Left
Stavros Mavroudeas | Professor of Political Economy in the Economics Department of the University of Macedonia

Ellen Brown — A Revolutionary Pope Calls for Rethinking the Outdated Criteria That Rule the World

Pope Francis’ revolutionary encyclical addresses not just climate change but the banking crisis. Interestingly, the solution to that crisis may have been modeled in the Middle Ages by Franciscan monks following the Saint from whom the Pope took his name.
Pope Francis has been called “the revolutionary Pope.” Before he became Pope Francis, he was a Jesuit Cardinal in Argentina named Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the son of a rail worker. Moments after his election, he made history by taking on the name Francis, after Saint Francis of Assisi, the leader of a rival order known to have shunned wealth to live in poverty.
Pope Francis’ June 2015 encyclical is called “Praised Be,” a title based on an ancient song attributed to St. Francis. Most papal encyclicals are addressed only to Roman Catholics, but this one is addressed to the world. And while its main focus is considered to be climate change, its 184 pages cover much more than that. Among other sweeping reforms, it calls for a radical overhaul of the banking system.
Laudato Si' calls for a new approach to economics and public policy globally.
The financial crisis of 2007-08 provided an opportunity to develop a new economy, more attentive to ethical principles, and new ways of regulating speculative financial practices and virtual wealth. But the response to the crisis did not include rethinking the outdated criteria which continue to rule the world.
. . . A strategy for real change calls for rethinking processes in their entirety, for it is not enough to include a few superficial ecological considerations while failing to question the logic which underlies present-day culture.
Web of Debt
A Revolutionary Pope Calls for Rethinking the Outdated Criteria That Rule the World
Ellen Brown

Don Quijones – LEAKED: How the Biggest Banks Are Conspiring to Rip Up Financial Regulations around the World

According to the treaty’s Annex on Financial Services, we now know that TiSA would effectively strip signatory governments of all remaining ability to regulate the financial industry in the interest of depositors, small-time investors, or the public at large. 
1. TiSA will restrict the ability of governments to limit systemic financial risks.

2. TiSA will force governments to “predict” all regulations that could at some point fall foul of TiSA.

3. TiSA will indefinitely bar new financial regulations that do not conform to deregulatory rules.

4. TiSA will prohibit national governments from using capital controls to prevent or mitigate financial crises.

5. TiSA will require acceptance of financial products not yet invented.

6. TiSA will provide opportunities for financial firms to delay financial regulations.Wolf Street.
Wolf Street
LEAKED: How the Biggest Banks Are Conspiring to Rip Up Financial Regulations around the World
Don Quijones

Raúl Ilargi Meijer — The Troika Turns Europe Into A Warzone

...the referendum has a far broader significance. It is about what and who will rule Europe going forward, and we’re talking decades here.

It will either be a union of functioning democracies, or it will be a totalitarian regime in which all 28 nations surrender their independence, their sovereignty, their votes and then their lives to Brussels and Berlin.
Democracies are about one thing first and foremost: the people decide. If you can’t have that, than why would you have elections and referendums? Those then become mere theater pieces. Like we already have in the US, where if anyone can explain to me the difference between the Clintons and the Kardashians, by all means give it a go.
Since it’s clear that Berlin is by far the strongest voice in the three-headed monster the Troika has become, it’s no exaggeration to say that what we see unfold before our eyes is yet another German occupation of Greece. There are no tanks and boxcars involved yet, but wars can be fought in many ways. And scorched earth can take up many different forms too. It’s the result that counts.
In the meantime it has somehow become entirely acceptable for politicians and media from foreign countries to tell the Greeks what to do, who to vote for, and what to make sure happens after.

European Parliament chief Martin Schulz even dares claim that Syriza should resign if the vote is yes, and it should be replaced with a bunch of technocrats. It’s none of your business, Martin. Or yours, Bloomberg writers, or Schäuble, or anyone else who’s not Greek. Shut up! You’re all way out of -democratic- line.
It’s up to Greeks to decide what happens in their country. It’s both a sovereign state and a democracy. The utmost respect for this should be the very foundation of everything we do as free people, whose ancestors fought so hard to make us free.
How come we moved so far away from that, so fast? What happened to us? What have we become?
The Automatic Earth
The Troika Turns Europe Into A Warzone
Raúl Ilargi Meijer

Looking to Fight Austerity by Greening Spain — Sharmini Peries interviews Robert Polin


Video and transcript

Triple Crisis
Looking to Fight Austerity by Greening Spain
Sharmini Peries interviews Robert Polin, Professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and co-director of the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI)

Jeff Sachs — A Way Out for Greece

I propose a four-step path out of the Greek crisis. First, I recommend that the Greek people give a resounding “No” to the creditors in the referendum on their demands this weekend.
Project Syndicate
A Way Out for Greece
Jeffrey D. Sachs, Professor of Sustainable Development, Professor of Health Policy and Management, and Director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, is also Special Adviser to the United Nations Secretary-General on the Millennium Development Goals
ht Clonal

US Fiscal Snapshot


Status quo YoY on leading USD spending thru end of 3rd Quarter:




On track for a fourth year in a row of just above a $4.1T spending result, don't expect much/any domestic growth as defined within the NIA framework:


There is still the outstanding "event risk" associated with the required eventual adjudication of the so-called 'debt ceiling' which will at some point have to be raised in order for leading spending and resultant savings to continue at the current (at best) minimally sufficient rate.


Yanis Varoufakis — IMF backs (ever so peculiarly) the SYRIZA government’s debt assessment

Debt relief ought to be at the centre of negotiations over a New Deal for Greece. That has been our government’s mantra from 26th of January, our first day on the job. Exactly five months later, on 26th of June, the IMF has conceded the point (as evidenced earlier today by the NYT) – on the very day Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called for a referendum so that the Greek people could reject an IMF-led proposal that offered no… debt relief.

The IMF’s latest debt sustainability analysis (DSA) is a fascinating read:....

Yanis Varoufakis
IMF backs (ever so peculiarly) the SYRIZA government’s debt assessment

Nicole Scicluna — Europe is heading towards constitutional crisis, with or without Greece

All of this indicates that the euro crisis is a crisis of EU constitutionalism. The union has failed to strike the right balance between democracy and technocratic governance. It has failed to balance the needs of citizens and states in a highly diverse supranational polity. 
German academic Fritz Scharpf famously asked 16 years ago whether EU governance could be both effective and democratic. Right now, it appears to be neither....
nsnbc
Europe is heading towards constitutional crisis, with or without Greece
Nicole Scicluna | Lecturer in Politics and International Studies at University of Birmingham

Marcus Weisgerber — Dempsey to Pentagon: Prepare For the Never-Ending War

The U.S. military needs to reorganize itself and prepare for war that has no end in sight with militant groups, such as the Islamic State, and nations that use proxies to fight on their behalf, America's top general warned Wednesday.
In what is likely his last significant strategy direction before retiring this summer, Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the Pentagon that "global disorder has trended upward while some of our comparative advantages have begun to erode," since 2011, the last update to the National Military Strategy.
"We are more likely to face prolonged campaigns than conflicts that are resolved quickly… that control of escalation is becoming more difficult and more important… and that as a hedge against unpredictability with reduced resources, we may have to adjust our
In what is likely his last significant strategy direction before retiring this summer, Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the Pentagon that "global disorder has trended upward while some of our comparative advantages have begun to erode," since 2011, the last update to the National Military Strategy.
"We are more likely to face prolonged campaigns than conflicts that are resolved quickly… that control of escalation is becoming more difficult and more important… and that as a hedge against unpredictability with reduced resources, we may have to adjust our global posture,” Dempsey writes in the new military strategy.
Dempsey, the president’s senior military advisor, criticizes Russia, Iran, North Korea, and China for aggressive military actions and warns that the rapidly changing global security environment might force the military to reorganize as it prepares for a busy future....
The military will continue its pivot to the Pacific, Dempsey writes, but its presence in Europe, the Middle East, Latin America, and Africa will evolve. The military must remain “globally engaged to shape the security environment,” he said.
If this sounds like historical imperial overreach, it is.

National Journal
Dempsey to Pentagon: Prepare For the Never-Ending War
Marcus Weisgerber, Defense One

Thursday, July 2, 2015

David Goodner — In Front of 10,000 in Madison, Bernie Sanders Calls for Wealth Redistribution

“There is one struggle where we have not gained ground, but lost it, and that is the fundamental struggle for economic justice,” Sanders said. “A hundred years have come and gone and we have lost ground. … What I would like to ask of you is, please, think big, not small. Our job is to bring people together around the progressive agenda. Our job is to redistribute wealth back into the hands of working families.”

In These Times
In Front of 10,000 in Madison, Bernie Sanders Calls for Wealth Redistribution
David Goodner

J. W. Mason — What Greece Must Do

The Greek government takes control of the Bank of Greece. It replaces the BoG’s current leadership — holdovers from the old conservative government, appointed at the 11th hour when Syriza was on the brink of power — with qualified people who support the program of Greece’s elected government.
The argument is made that the central bank has abused its mandate, failed in its fundamental duty to maintain the integrity of the banking system, in order to advance a political agenda.
This is the crux of it. It involves abrogating the neoliberal principle of central bank independence. This would be a declaration of war against TPTB. It's high time to have that war between neoliberal capitalism and democracy.

There is much more to the proposal, but taking political control of the central bank is a sine qua non.

Deirdre Fulton — Bernie Sanders Blasts Troika for 'Abysmal Failure' of Greek Austerity

Describing the austerity policies that European creditors have imposed on Greece as an "abysmal failure," progressive presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Wednesday chastised the so-called Troika—the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Central Bank (ECB), and the European Commission—for inflicting severe "economic pain and suffering" on the Greek people.
"It is unacceptable that the International Monetary Fund and European policymakers have refused to work with the Greek government on a sensible plan to improve its economy and pay back its debt," Sanders said in an exclusive statement to the Huffington Post. "At a time of grotesque wealth inequality, the pensions of the people in Greece should not be cut even further to pay back some of the largest banks and wealthiest financiers in the world."
Common Dreams
Bernie Sanders Blasts Troika for 'Abysmal Failure' of Greek Austerity
Deirdre Fulton

See also
Together, the three treaties form not only a new legal order shaped for transnational corporations, but a new economic 'grand enclosure,' which excludes China and all other BRICS countries," declared WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assangein a press statement. What's more, it adds, "[a]ll three treaties have been subject to stringent criticism for the lack of transparency and public consultation in their negotiation processes."

TISA Exposed: 'Holy Grail' of Leaks Reveals Detailed Plot for Corporate Takeover