Category Archives: Governments

The World’s Least-Free Countries Reveal Just How Much “Socialism Sucks”, by David Gordon

David Gordon reviews a book with a self-explanatory title. From Gordon at mises.org:

[Socialism Sucks: Two Economists Drink Their Way Through the Unfree World. By Robert Lawson and Benjamin Powell.  Regnery Publishing, 2019. 192 pages.]

Robert Lawson and Benjamin Powell are well-known free market economists, and they do not look with favor on a disturbing trend among American young people. “In the spring of 2016,” they tell us, “a Harvard survey found that a third of eighteen-to twenty-nine year olds supported socialism. Another survey, from the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, reported that millennials supported socialism over any other economic system.” (p.8)

Unfortunately, the young people in question have little idea of the nature of socialism. Lawson and Powell would like to remedy this situation, but they confront a problem. Ordinarily, one would urge students to read Hazlitt’s Economics in One Lesson, Mises’s “Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth,” and similar classic works, in order to understand the basic facts about the free market and socialism, but the millennials are unlikely to do so. One must attract their attention. What can be done?

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Are You Ready To Die? by Paul Craig Roberts

The government’s foreign and military policies are gambling with all of our lives. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:

Washington’s Provocations of Russia and Russia’s Passivity Are Scheduling the Death of the Earth

The Zionist Neoconservatives who run US foreign policy are now herding the US out of the remaining arms limitations agreements.  It appears that Washington intends to withdraw from the Open Skies agreement with Russia.  https://www.vox.com/2019/10/9/20906509/open-skies-treaty-trump-russia-cheat 

The Open Skies Treaty allowed the US and Russia to overfly each other’s territory in order that there could be mutual assurance that one country or the other wasn’t building up forces for attack.  If Washington withdraws from the treaty, which seems in the cards, tensions and uncertainties between the two major nuclear powers will increase.  In no way is this a good thing.

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More ‘Stupid War’ in Syria, by Eric S. Margolis

Will Trump finally get the US out of Syria? From Eric Margolis at lewrockwell.com:

More war in wretched Syria.  Half the population are now refugees; entire cities lie shattered by bombing; bands of crazed gunmen run rampant; US, French, Israeli and Russian warplanes bomb widely.

Now, adding to the chaos, President Donald Trump has finally given Turkey, NATO’s second military power, the green light to invade parts of northeastern Syria after he apparently ordered a token force of US troops there to withdraw.

This, of course, puts the Turks in a growing confrontation with the region’s Kurds, who have occupied large swaths of the area during Syria’s civil war.  The Kurdish militia, known as YPG (confusingly part of the so-called Free Syrian Army), is armed, lavishly financed and directed by the CIA and Pentagon.

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Pompeo Can’t Blame Iran For Attacking Itself, by Tom Luongo

So far there has not been a word from ever voluble Mike Pompeo on this latest Middle East incident. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me: 

“You’re gonna need a bigger boat”

–JAWS

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water someone poked a couple of holes in an oil tanker belonging to Iran. This sent oil prices up briefly in the vain hope of stabilizing them. But, strangely, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was silent.

This was a warning to Iran from someone on the Saudi/Israeli/U.S. side, “You won’t win without costs.”

Well, of course, that’s true. The big question everyone is asking is, of course, “Who did this?”

Details are sketchy with a lot of back and forth. Iran initially reported missile strikes.

Press TV

@PressTV

Report: Explosion in tanker has set vessel on fire near port city of .

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Putin Planning “Deal Of The Century” Between Syria & Turkey As US Exits, by Tyler Durden

Russia may be far more instrumental to a Middle East peace than the US has been. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

Lebanese Arabic news broadcaster Al-Mayadeen is reporting that Russia has begun organizing “reconciliation talks” between Syria and Turkey, in what would be an unprecedented development, given President Erdogan’s position has long been that Turkey won’t negotiate with Damascus so long as Assad is in power.

The Middle East broadcaster cited Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who said, “Moscow will ask for start of talks between Damascus and Ankara”.

Russia’s TASS has also confirmed the initiative, making it the first significant attempt to bring the two sides to the table, given Ankara severed diplomatic ties with Damascus in 2012. Turkey could indeed be ready given it has finally gotten its way in Syria with a long planned attack on Syrian Kurds along the border in northern Syria, which began Wednesday with an air and ground offensive.

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Did China Just Announce the End of U.S. Primacy in the Pacific? by Scott Ritter

First it was Russia and now it’s China coming up with weapons that can probably end US military hegemony. From Scott Ritter at theamericanconservative.com:

Last week’s military parade previewed a series of game-changing weapons that could neutralize American seapower.

For decades, the United States has taken China’s ballistic missile capability for granted, assessing it as a low-capability force with limited regional impact and virtually no strategic value. But on October 1, during a massive military parade celebrating the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Beijing put the U.S., and the world, on notice that this assessment was no longer valid.

In one fell swoop, China may have nullified America’s strategic nuclear deterrent, the U.S. Pacific Fleet, and U.S. missile defense capability. Through its impressive display of new weapons systems, China has underscored the reality that while the United States has spent the last two decades squandering trillions of dollars fighting insurgents in the Middle East, Beijing was singularly focused on overcoming American military superiority in the Pacific. If the capabilities of these new weapons are taken at face value, China will have succeeded on this front.

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Return to Russia: Crimeans Tell the Real Story of the 2014 Referendum and Their Lives Since, by Eva Bartlett

If you could conduct a free and fair referendum in Crimea, most of its citizens would indicate that they are happier under Russia than they were under Ukraine. From Eva Bartlett at mintpressnews.com:

Eva Bartlett traveled to Crimea to see firsthand out how Crimeans have fared since 2014 when their country reunited with Russia, and what the referendum was really like.

SIMFEROPOL, CRIMEA — In early August I traveled to Russia for the first time, partly out of interest in seeing some of the vast country with a tourist’s eyes, partly to do some journalism in the region. It also transpired that while in Moscow I was able to interview Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman of the Foreign Ministry.

High on my travel list, however, was to visit Crimea and Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) — the former a part of Russia, the latter an autonomous republic in the east of Ukraine, neither accurately depicted in Western reporting. Or at least that was my sense looking at independent journalists’ reports and those in Russian media.

Both regions are native Russian-speaking areas; both opted out of Ukraine in 2014. In the case of Crimea, joining Russia (or actually rejoining, as most I spoke to in Crimea phrased it) was something people overwhelmingly supported. In the case of the Donbass region, the turmoil of Ukraine’s Maidan coup in 2014 set things in motion for the people in the region to declare independence and form the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics.

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