Category Archives: Economy

The Left Looks Backward (Again), by Thomas DiLorenzo

The Green New Deal wouldn’t work any better than the original New Deal. From Thomas DiLorenzo at lewrockwell.com:

The so-called Green New Deal that was recently posted as a congressional Resolution and endorsed by many high-profile Democrats is essentially a twenty-first century version of the 1888 utopian novel, Looking Backward, by the Marxist-inspired writer Edward Bellamy.  The main character of the novel, one Julian West, falls asleep for 113 years and awakes in the year 2000 delighting in the fact that America had been turned into a socialist utopia.  A major theme of the novel is that all the evils of society can be eradicated by more-or-less totalitarian government controls, mandates, and regulations.  That is also the theme of the Green New Deal.

In Bellamy’s utopia private property is abolished and all industry is nationalized.  Government guarantees “jobs for everyone,” as does the Green New Deal.  Education is “free” (another Green New Deal promise) and everyone is paid the same by the government, the sole employer.  Special efforts are made to assure that men and women are all paid the same.  This is another key point of the Green New Deal.  Everyone retired at age 45 with a good taxpayer-funded pension.

Numerous Edward Bellamy Societies sprung up, established by socialist intellectuals of the day such as John Dewey, who founded the Edward Bellamy Society of New York. Looking Backward also spawned numerous small socialist communes, all of which collapsed in failure – a warning sign of what would become of twentieth-century socialism everywhere.

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Are the Democrats Bent on Suicide? by Patrick J. Buchanan

The Democrats are trying to Make Socialism Great. There is no Again because it’s never come up great the many times it has been tried. From Patrick J. Buchanan at buchanan.org:

After reading an especially radical platform agreed upon by the British Labor Party, one Tory wag described it as “the longest suicide note in history.”

The phrase comes to mind on reading of the resolution calling for a Green New Deal, advanced by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and endorsed by at least five of the major Democratic candidates for president.

The Green New Deal is designed to recall the halcyon days of the 1930s, when, so the story goes, FDR came to Washington to enact the historic reforms that rescued America from the Great Depression.

Only that story is more than a small myth.

The unemployment rate when FDR took the oath in 1933 was 25 percent. It never fell below 14 percent through the 1930s. In June 1938, despite huge Democratic majorities in Congress, FDR was presiding over a nation where unemployment was back up to 19 percent.

World War II and the conscription of 16 million young men gave us “full employment.” And the war’s end and demobilization saw the return of real prosperity in 1946, after FDR was dead.

Yet this Green New Deal is nothing if not ambitious.

To cope with climate change, the GND calls for a 10-year plan to meet “100 percent of the power demand of the United States through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources.”

This appears to require a phase-out by 2030 of all carbon-emitting power plants fueled by coal and oil and their replacement by power plants fueled by wind and solar.

Will natural gas be permitted? Will nuclear power? There are 60 commercially operating nuclear power plants with 98 nuclear reactors in 30 states. Will they be shut down? Will the Greens agree to dam up more U.S. rivers to produce renewable hydroelectric power?

Air travel consumes huge quantities of carbon-producing jet fuel. What will replace it? Perhaps progressive Democratic candidates will set an example by not flying, and then by voting to end production of private aircraft and to ground all corporate jets. Let the elites sail to Davos.

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Venezuela: Let’s Cut to the Chase, by Pepe Escobar

Venezuela has become a key battlefield in the global battle for energy dominance. From Pepe Escobar at strategic-culture.org:

Cold War 2.0 has hit South America with a bang – pitting the US and expected minions against the four key pillars of in-progress Eurasia integration: Russia, China, Iran and Turkey.

It’s the oil, stupid. But there’s way more than meets the (oily) eye.

Caracas has committed the ultimate cardinal sin in the eyes of Exceptionalistan; oil trading bypassing the US dollar or US-controlled exchanges.

Remember Iraq. Remember Libya. Yet Iran is also doing it. Turkey is doing it. Russia is – partially – on the way. And China will eventually trade all its energy in petroyuan.

With Venezuela adopting the petro crypto-currency and the sovereign bolivar, already last year the Trump administration had sanctioned Caracas off the international financial system.

No wonder Caracas is supported by China, Russia and Iran. They are the real hardcore troika – not psycho-killer John Bolton’s cartoonish “troika of tyranny” – fighting against the Trump administration’s energy dominance strategy, which consists essentially in aiming at the total lock down of oil trading in petrodollars, forever.

Venezuela is a key cog in the machine. Psycho killer Bolton admitted it on the record; “It will make a big difference to the United States economically if we could have American oil companies invest in and produce the oil capabilities in Venezuela.” It’s not a matter of just letting ExxonMobil take over Venezuela’s massive oil reserves – the largest on the planet. The key is to monopolize their exploitation in US dollars, benefitting a few Big Oil billionaires.

Once again, the curse of natural resources is in play. Venezuela must not be allowed to profit from its wealth on its own terms; thus, Exceptionalistan has ruled that the Venezuelan state must be shattered.

In the end, this is all about economic war. Cue to the US Treasury Department imposing new sanctions on PDVSA that amount to a de facto oil embargo against Venezuela.

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The Making of Juan Guaidó: US Regime-Change Laboratory Created Venezuela’s Coup Leader, by Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal

Juan Guaidó is right out of CIA central casting. From Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal at consortiumnews.com:

The Washington favorite has spent years at the forefront of a violent campaign of destabilization, write Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal of Grayzone.

Before the fateful date of Jan. 22, fewer than 1-in-5 Venezuelans had heard of Juan Guaidó. Only a few months ago, the 35-year-old was an obscure character in a politically marginal far-right group closely associated with gruesome acts of street violence. Even in his own party, Guaidó had been a mid-level figure in the opposition-dominated National Assembly, which is now held under contempt according to Venezuela’s constitution.

But after a single phone call from from U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, Guaidó proclaimed himself as president of Venezuela. Anointed as the leader of his country by Washington, a previously unknown political bottom dweller was vaulted onto the international stage as the U.S.-selected leader of the nation with the world’s largest oil reserves.

Echoing the Washington consensus, The New York Times editorial board hailed Guaidó as a “credible rival” to President Nicolás Maduro with a “refreshing style and vision of taking the country forward.” The Bloomberg News editorial board applauded him for seeking “restoration of democracy” and The Wall Street Journal declared him “a new democratic leader.” Meanwhile, Canada, numerous European nations, Israel, and the bloc of right-wing Latin American governments known as the Lima Group recognized Guaidó as the legitimate leader of Venezuela.

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Salvini the Kidnapper Officially Has the EU Scared, by Tom Luongo

The EU is toast. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

A court in Sicily has ruled that Interior Minister, leader of The League and all-around Euroskeptic bad-ass Matteo Salvini should stand trial for kidnapping migrants held in abeyance off Italy’s shores.

“I confess,” Salvini said in a video posted to his Facebook page, “there is no need for a trial. It’s true, I did it and I’d do it again.”

“I risk 3 to 15 years in prison for blocking illegal landings in Italy. I have no words,” wrote Salvini, the leader of the ultra-nationalist Lega (League) party, which now rules Italy in a coalition with the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S).

If this wasn’t so stupid it would be hysterical, actually. But it exists and it’s an attack on Salvini that has a number of angles to it.

As Dr. Steve Turley explains in the video below one of the goals of this attack is to drive a wedge between Five Star Movement (M5S) and its coalition partner, The League.

Early returns on this look to be it will go nowhere as M5S leader Luigi DI Maio supported Salvini. But, the real issue isn’t the coalition government.

If somehow Di Maio can’t ride herd over his faction with the Italian parliament and they vote to allow this trial to go forward then M5S will continue sinking into obscurity and The League’s rising poll numbers will accelerate.

As Turley points out it is not in M5S’s best interest to betray its partner at this point. They enjoy parliamentary representation well above their current polling.

So, they would jeopardize everything they’ve worked to shape Italian domestic policy.

But that’s not the real issue here. The real issue is this is an attempt by the EU and The Davos Crowd behind them to slow down the integration of the Euroskeptic movement around Europe to challenge the current status quo in the European Parliament.

Salvini called for a “League of Leagues” after his meeting with Hungary’s Viktor Orban.

That’s why Salvini is calling for “A League of Leagues” across Europe.  He will succeed.

This is the guy who successfully rebranded the secessionist Northern League into the MIGA party – Make Italy Great Again. 

Then he and Five Star Movement leader Luigi Di Maio navigated the Italian Swamp to form a government experts said couldn’t work, while simultaneously neutering establishment stalking horse Silvio Berlusconi.
Thanks to Salvini’s strategic genius Italian politics will never be the same again.  His League now polls around 30%, which bodes well for it in next year’s European Parliamentary Elections.

Because now his sights are MEGA – Make Europe Great Again.

In fact, this frivolous lawsuit is prima facia evidence that the EU oligarchs in Brussels are officially scared of what’s coming in May’s European Parliamentary elections.

If Salvini wasn’t a threat they wouldn’t be going after him this way.

If you bind Salvini down with having to whip up support in Italy he’s not spending that time convincing the leaders of Alternative for Germany (AfD) or Marine Le Pen’s National Rally to coalesce into a unified opposition against the hardcore leftist European integrationists.

Populist Euroskeptic movements are still rising all across Europe. And the EU needs to get past this election to ensure that the real power in Brussels remains in the hands of The Davos Crowd. This has become an existential threat to the European project.

It has to stay on course despite the will of the people of Europe.

It’s an act of pure desperation. It’s no different than how they are handling Brexit. And it’s why the EU will not cave on Brexit until the last minute, if at all. They cannot empower Salvini, Le Pen, Kurz, Orban, et.al. against them.

Caving to the U.K. on Brexit will reveal how weak they truly are.

So, Salvini and Di Maio were right to embrace the accusations rather than soft-peddle. The people are craving competent leadership and this initial show of solidarity demonstrates that.

This will have to be dealt with and it will be a real test of the political situation in Italy. If the Senate votes this down then Salvini can ignore it and, worse for Brussels, campaign harder on it.

It will also shore up his support abroad as the real prize, the European Commission Presidency comes into focus. If it fails then that will make it much harder to put together a coalition strong enough to block Jean Claude-Juncker’s expected successor.

The future of the EU actually hangs in the balance on this frivolity. That tells you just how desperate things really are for the current leadership of the rapidly disintegrating European Union.

 

 

What Will It Take To Make You Understand And Accept That They Hate You? by Kurt Schlichter

Many of them want to kill you. From Kurt Schlichter at townhall.com:

What Will It Take To Make You Understand And Accept That They Hate You?

You need to die because of your smile.

That’s the position of our enemies, and we know it because they told us – openly, proudly, in the garbage public forum that is Twitter and elsewhere. Oh, they backtracked a little when the extent of their killing fantasies got exposed, scampering like their insect analogy, the roach, when someone flips on the kitchen light. But that kid in DC with the Frigidaireborne reefer ranger banging that drum in his baffled mug? They wanted that kid to die for having a Wrong Smile.

Cue the excuse chorus: “That’s nonsense! We just wanted to pummel that kid and then destroy him, his family and and all his classmates! Don’t look behind the curtain at the woodchipper comments and bomb threats, you cisnormative monsters!

Think of what they would do with real power…

Accept that that kid was you, and me. If they’ll ice a kid for not having the right grin, they’ll waste you or me in a heartbeat. Murder is, after all, how leftists roll. The USSR, Red China, Cambodia, North Korea, Cuba – that cadaver-strewn litany teaches what’s lurking at the bottom of the slope we’re sliding down. The Dems are spooning with socialism, and the goal of socialism is written in blood on the pages of history. The unapproved must be liquidated, and they are making no secret that you are unapproved.

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Venezuela – A Case Of Socialist-Organized Theft, by Daniel Lacalle

Setting aside the issue of whether or not the US should be trying to force regime change in Venezuela, the economy there is a disaster and would be even in the absence of economic sanctions from the US. From Daniel Lacalle at dlacalle.com:

Much has been written about the economic disaster perpetrated by the Maduro-Chavez regime in Venezuela. The magnitude of it is simply difficult to match. A sad global example of how to destroy a rich country.

The mistake that many make is to think that this wreck has been caused by a combination of incompetence and folly. And they are wrong. The Venezuelan socialist regime has carried out the largest organized robbery in history and has done so with a perfectly designed plan.

The plan was always to expropriate the wealth of the whole country for the benefit of a few political leaders through plundering, destruction of currency and decapitalizacón of the state oil company

What has happened to Venezuela is not a disaster or a coincidence, it is socialism.

It is important to start by debunking the lies of the regime propaganda:

The nonexistent blockade. The United States is one of Venezuela’s largest trading partners. Trade between the United States and Venezuela in 2018 grew by more than 9%. Venezuela has bilateral trade agreements with more than 70 countries. Chavismo, like the Castro regime in Cuba, manipulates its followers by calling the sanctions against members of the regime and the fraudulent use of the country’s funds a “blockade”. The only blockade suffered by Venezuela is that of Chavismo against its citizens.

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