[Marxism-Thaxis] Killing Joke

2011-01-21 Thread CeJ
A lot of music watchers have argued that Jaz Coleman, the frontman of
Killing Joke, is over the deepend in paranoia and conspiracy, but when
he shouts stuff like 'Fuck the bankers' and 'take back your country'
at a concert in Greece, he seems pretty sane to me.

He uses the mass rock concert platform to provoke and antagonize. But
I would bet it was music like Killing Joke the kids in the UK were
listening to when they tried to do something about the government. And
The Blood on Your Hands video will never make it to US TV.

Over on Marxmail, they were having a discussion about metal and
Rammstein and politics and it seems to me that Killing Joke largely
invented the sort of artistic spaces Rage Against the Machine and
Rammstein would inhabit. It might seem ironic that Killing Joke had to
go towards a metal sound to find a new audience, but in a way that
takes them back to their beginnings 30 years ago, when they sounded
like they were from another planet. The conclusion on Marxmail about
Rammstein seems to be that because they are ambiguous, they are not
real left. But I think ambiguously is the only way using popular forms
of music to provoke political thinking work. It starts with the
reaction like: what the f- do they actually mean with those lyrics,
with that music, with those images in their video or at their concert?

http://thequietus.com/articles/04796-jaz-coleman-on-killing-joke-and-absolute-dissent

Jaz: I'm more concerned with food supply. Yes, there must be change.
But staples are going up so fast. Food prices are predicted to go up
40% in the next couple of years. People's wages are being slashed.
Where is it leading to? You don't have to be Einstein to work it out.
It mustn't be allowed to get to that. What is required is a sweeping
green communism.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T869Obl03oEfeature=related
Killing Joke 'In Excelsis'

In Excelsis lyrics

Liberty is ours to protect
The glorious pursuit of happiness
The rights of free speech by consent
The right to express discontent

The glory of freedom, simple liberties
In excelsis
The rights of man to eat and drink and breathe
In excelsis
The glory of freedom
The glory of freedom
In excelsis
In excelsis
The glorious pursuit of happiness
In excelsis
In excelsis
In excelsis
In excelsis

Liberty our common goal
Smash the cabals that control
This world is ours
We won't be sold
No profit, interest or loans

The glory of freedom, simple liberties
In excelsis
The rights of man to eat and drink and breathe
In excelsis
The glory of freedom
The glory of freedom
In excelsis
In excelsis
The glorious pursuit of happiness
In excelsis
In excelsis
In excelsis
In excelsis

The glory of freedom, simple liberties
In excelsis
The rights of man to eat and drink and breathe
In excelsis
The glory of freedom
The glory of freedom
In excelsis
In excelsis
The glorious pursuit of happiness
In excelsis
In excelsis
In excelsis
In excelsis

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gc-YDG7GG0sfeature=related
Killing Joke 'Here Comes the Singularity'

Here Comes The Singularity lyrics

World population mass has reached the critical
Humanity shall function as a single cell
Machines design and clone a different race of man
Who is the architect, who is the hidden hand?
Kneel down and freedom’s gone
Speak out – something’s wrong
So when society breaks down in screaming insanity
And when the sky cracks open
Here comes the singularity

Military industrial complex on the rise
Let new Pearl Harbours take no-one by surprise
One million people marched against a traitor’s war
No weapons found and no-one heard their call

Kneel down and freedom’s gone
Speak out – something’s wrong
So when society breaks down in screaming insanity
And when the sky cracks open
Here comes the singularity

Foundations and shareholders identified on lists
Big corporations dismantled brick by brick
Investment bankers crushed like lilies under feet
Let Baboeuf and Saint-Just pass judgement from the street

Kneel down and freedom’s gone
Speak out – something’s wrong
So when society breaks down in screaming insanity
And when the sky cracks open
Here comes the singularity

Kneel down and freedom’s gone

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62cbc_EDQxk
Killing Joke (live in Greece) 'Absolute Dissent'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4v66x7nXCsfeature=related
Killing Joke 'Blood on Your Hands'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXQbgqRTvI4feature=related
Killing Joke 'Total Invasion'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naUAuptzUb4feature=related
Killing Joke 'European Super State'

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Working Class Hero

2010-12-15 Thread CeJ
I was trying to think of songs that actually expressed working class
consciousness outside of accepting the fantasy that 'pop music' is one
means to escape it (either through commercial success from making it
or being transported somewhere while listening to it). Or songs that
actually acknowledge the existence of working class. My memory takes
me back to the 70s and 80s, or to artists who continued producing
after that but come from that time. Some of it seems to be working
class rejection and parody of bourgeois values (something the Beatles
stood out for but most didn't understand that back in the 1960s).

The first song on my list is trying to be an anthem for the working
class but ends on a less than hopeful note. The Skids' song 'Charles'
strikes me now as one I actually hadn't understood back in 1978 when I
first heard it. I thought the factory job had resulted in some sort of
physical injury, but what the song is really saying is that when you
participate in a machinic assembly line you become a machine that
loses human thinking ability and feeling, while your life is worth as
much as a machine written off the books as obsolete. The Skids were a
punk/post-punk band of the late 70s. Stuart Adamson would go on to
form Big Country, whose name seemed to confuse Americans (they were
more hard rock and Celtic folk rock but did do some country later).
The Mekons 'Millionaire' is simply brilliant. They got started as one
of the acts that always got compared to Gang of Four (there is some
similarity of sound). David Sylvian's song, it seems to me, is about
how working class status helps define the foreign other--we want
'poetry' from them in their existence, but once we see them closer to
how they are (desperate, disposable, but 'damn near unbreakable'), we
are changed. I know it sounds like a cliche' but the 'third world
poverty' I have seen near tourist resorts always struck me as people
with more dignity than the poor of a 'developed democracy' like the
US.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rF5t4FH5B4Yfeature=related

Belief In The Small Man
Stuart Adamson/Big Country

---
Just as one life turns from birth
Just as the ring finds its worth
Just as the leaf turns to gold
So you and I will be sold
Chorus
Sold for the work done
While we could feel young
Sold for the new son
Gold for the pure one
Where does our home lie
When is our own
Lonely the cold cry

Only unknown
Dark comes the night on the aged
Hard comes the day still unpaid yet
All in a bed still unmade it
Chokes like the tomb and it says its
Chorus (three times)
Unknown, unknown
Chorus
Where does our home lie
When is our own
Lonely the cold cry
Only unknown
Unknown, unknown


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=50LwbnBlk6Afeature=related

Millionaire
Mekons

everybody's so in love
but they don't touch or meet
eyes all stinging eyes all red
a bunch of flowers in the street
i love a millionaire
the champagne was never cheap
but i could pay someone to drink it for me
never rise up from these sheets
watching time just roll away
stretching out my bones
a million miles from home
lust corrodes my body
i've lost count of my lovers
but i can count my money
for ever and forever
dreaming of a creature who is too pale and large to stand
and only feels the terror of his vain flight from earth

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySHOOnhpCy8feature=related
America
Killing Joke

I can survive the rat race honey
Time is money and money is honey, honey
My megabucks your symmetrical beauty
Together we can serve the nation - yeah!

The quality of life filled us all with pride
America
And as I watched I just cried and cried
How I love America

I will buy you rich perfumes
And we will eat the finest foods
A mansion in New England
A silver dollar for every child
Where everybody has got their price
They'll sustain our way of life
You and I will fly to Rio
I'll make you feel like a millionaire

I can survive the rat race honey
Time is money and money is honey, honey
My megabucks your symmetrical beauty
Together we can serve the nation - yeah!

The quality of life filled us all with pride
America
And as I watched I just cried and cried
How I love America

West is best and might is right
And with our allies - fight the good fight
A first class, five star enterprise
Now everybody's got to compromise
My moral code's on overload
Liberty still takes it's toll
Take a look at the losers wasting in the bars
Where they cut their losses!

I can survive the rat race honey
Time is money, and money is honey, honey
My megabucks your symmetrical beauty
Together we can serve the nation - yeah!

The quality of life filled us all with pride
America
And as I watched I just cried and cried
How I love America

There were fireworks in the Gulf
There was champagne at home - How I love America
But showbiz and Hollywood still shouted out - America



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pEGM47bkvQ

Charles
The Skids

Charles got a job in a factory
Drilling sheet metal from six till three
Worked 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Working Class Hero

2010-12-15 Thread CeJ
Looks like at the archive a couple songs got clipped out--perhaps too
long a post?

Here is what didn't make it to the archive:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOTHdjymnW0

Atom and Cell
David Sylvian

Her skin was darker than ashes
And she had something to say
Bout being naked to the elements
At the end of yet another day
And the rain on her back that continued to fall
From the bruise of her lips
Swollen, fragile, and small

And the bills that you paid with were worth nothing at all
A lost foreign currency
Multi-coloured, barely reputable
Like the grasses that blew in the warm summer breeze
Well she offered you this to do as you pleased

And where is the poetry?
Didn't she promise us poetry?

The redwoods, the deserts, the tropical ease
The swamps and the prairie dogs, the Joshua trees
The long straight highways from dirt road to tar
Hitching your wheels to truck, bus, or car

And the lives that you hold in the palm of your hand
You toss them aside small and damn near unbreakable
You drank all the water and you pissed yourself dry
Then you fell to your knees and proceeded to cry

And who could feel sorry for a drunkard like this
In a democracy of dunces with a parasites kiss?

And where are the stars?
Didn't she promise us stars?


Nothing will ever be as it was
The price has been paid with a thousand loose shoes
Pictures are pasted on shop windows and walls
Like a poor mans Boltanski
Lost one and all.

Sell, sell
Bid your farewell
Come, come
Save yourself
Give yourself over
Pushing your consciousness
Deep into every atom and cell,
Sell,
Bid your farewell
Come, come
Save yourself
Give yourself over
Pushing your consciousness
Deep into every atom and cell,
Sell,
Bid your farewell
Come, come
Save yourself
Give yourself over
Pushing your consciousness


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_Uz8ud1qnsfeature=related

What are you working for?
Stuart Adamson and Big Country

There was a crooked man and he wore a crooked smile
He built a crooked highway and it ran for miles and miles
With money from the revenue and sponsorship from Ford
But it barely holds together with the goodwill of the Lord

In the penthouse of the baron, the little children sleep
Daddy talks to smugglers while armed guerillas creep
Poison for the great unwashed, business for the mob
Another teenage murder, it's just trouble on the job

Now I see what I must see

The poor do time the rich go free
You keep the faith and they keep score
Is this what you are working for

A newsleak in the city, another scandal breaks
Sex and drugs in city hall, someone on the make
Legal bounty hunters aim their lawsuits well
The victim talks to Playboy says I guess I'll go to hell

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Test Scorer

2010-12-13 Thread CeJ
That piece doesn't even read like a good MRZINE piece, let alone the
usually ponderous, pretentious MR.
All those words and I still can't get a good idea what the guy
actually does. Standardized tests are for the most part
machine-/computer-scored. Some tests require recorded oral responses
(TOEIC, TOEFL) and many require short written responses (little
personal essays on an assigned topic--such as LSAT, GRE, TOEFL, new
additional TOEIC 'Speaking-Writing' test, etc.). The way these are
scored is three people give a holistic response to the mini-essay. If
one response is an outlier, it's thrown out and the thing is scored on
the avg. of two scores. Otherwise, three scores are averaged.

I think the guy means to say that institutional and standardized
testing is a huge money-making business, made even larger because of
the Bushturds out of Texass's drive to leave no child behind, fully
phonically aware as they go to bed hungry or lack medical care or
decent housing.

Test-scoring is but one pathetic aspect of the industry. Pearson wants
to be a big player, as do a lot of other for-profit entities moving
into education.

CJ

-- 
ELT in Japan
http://www.eltinjapan.com/

Japan Higher Education Outlook
http://japanheo.blogspot.com/

We are Feral Cats
http://wearechikineko.blogspot.com/

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Octavius Catto was murdered on Election Day 1871

2010-12-10 Thread CeJ
Interesting photo of a sign on Catto.


http://www.flickr.com/photos/23021...@n06/3075692379/

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008

2010-11-28 Thread CeJ

 Substance of what? Finance capital remains fianance capital but it is not
  the financial industrial capital of the time of Lenin.

 Here's something from 2002.

 WL.

Do you even read your own posts? You are the one who used the word
'substance'. I merely echoed it in my reply.

Again what you haven't done is shown how capital has pushed into a new
ontological category. Warren Buffett warned about the dangers of the
newer derivatives, and then bet billions on them because he didn't
want to get left out of the drive for 20% plus profits.

The whole notion of derivative is not new at all.

CJ



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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

2010-11-27 Thread CeJ
WL:
The quality that has changed is the substance of modern finance capital
that is outside of and evolves based on detachment from production of surplus
value.
...
Wealth today is a very super symbolic abstract thing not riveted to gold or
 any tangible.

This is the change.

---
Hence the recent oil futures and gold bubbles because parasitic
investors were scared shitless about anything linked to actual
production that might require THEIR capitalization.

What you haven't done is make any coherent argument that would
convince me that the substance has changed that much during the past
130 years. Of course there are those who have made the quantitative
argument but you didn't do that either here.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

2010-11-27 Thread CeJ
About the only thing Time is good for now--reading online articles I
can remember reading in my father's copy of Time back in the 70s.
Looks a lot like QE2 to me. Now instead of pegging the dollar to some
sort of imaginary value of gold, we have pegged the value of gold to
the dollar (and the price of oil is also pegged to the dollar).

CJ



http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,943884,00.html

BY ripping the dollar loose from gold and slapping a 10% surtax on
imports, Richard Nixon inaugurated a global power play designed to
boost U.S. exports and cut the country's worsening balance of payments
deficit. Though his moves came as a shock, it appears that he acted
none too soon; last week the Commerce Department reported that in July
U.S. imports had exceeded exports for the fourth straight month.
Still, now that some of the excitement surrounding the Nixon
initiative is subsiding, a hard truth is hitting bankers, businessmen
and government leaders the world over: a return to any sort of lasting
stability in trade and currency dealings will be tedious,
time-consuming and laden with difficulties.

Closed Window. Nixon's dollar moves constituted an invitation to
foreign governments to float the dollar against their own currencies
by allowing the factors of supply and demand to dictate its value
overseas. His aim was to force the U.S.'s major trading partners,
especially Japan and the Common Market countries, to increase the
value of their currencies—and thus the cost of their exports. Once
Nixon shut the gold window, the dollar was expected to drop, and the
value of foreign currencies to go up. The money exchanges of the world
had been effectively closed since the Nixon announcement; until they
reopened last week, no one knew for sure how much the dollar would
fall or other currencies rise.

The only decisive development came at week's end from Tokyo. After two
weeks of agonizing over the Nixon pressure and several times denying
flatly that the yen would be revalued, the government of Prime
Minister Eisaku Sato finally announced that it would allow the
Japanese yen to float against the dollar. This was probably an
unavoidable decision for Sato, but it was especially painful and will
produce wide-ranging economic woes for Japan. By in effect increasing
the price of the yen, Sato dulled the cutting edge of Japan's export
drive, not only in the U.S.—which buys 30% of all Japanese exports—but
throughout the world. Beyond that, a floating yen proportionately
decreases the value of Japanese dollar holdings, which now total $11.3
billion. Japanese shipyards, which currently hold more than $5 billion
in construction contracts written in dollars, will be especially hard
hit. A 10% floating revaluation would cost Japanese shipbuilders $500
million.

Just how widely the yen will be allowed to fluctuate is not yet clear;
the Bank of Japan said it would intervene to prevent too drastic a
swing, at least for now. On the first day of the limited float, the
yen was traded at an increase of 5% to 7% over the old rate, but just
where it will settle is still uncertain. Japanese officials noted that
the flotation was only a temporary measure, but U.S. importers were
already predicting that the higher yen rate on top of the 10% surtax
could effectively close the American market to Japanese steel and most
consumer goods.


Read more: 
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,943884,00.html#ixzz16YokTgS7

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

2010-11-23 Thread CeJ
Sorry WL but I have to disagree. For a start, I'm not sure what your
concept of Lenin's concept of banks actually is.

This time around people started to notice the crisis when there was a
run on a building society type bank in the UK.
I predicted something tumultuous would happen when I saw that the
price of oil futures had peaked just under 150 dollars to the barrel
(and I still think this had something to do with 'capital drying up'
at the investment banks). Then the turmoil began with the mortgage
brokers.

However, if we look at the 1907 crisis we actually see a lot of
continuity and analogues. We see the panic actually starts and is
expressed in institutions that are outside the 'traditional bank' of
the era but have taken on functions in areas of business and the
country that the banks didn't.


http://eh.net/encyclopedia/article/moen.panic.1907

excerpt:

Why Were There Runs on Trust Companies?

There were three main types of financial intermediaries during the
National Banking Era: national banks, state banks, and later in the
period trust companies. It is not surprising that trust companies were
the focal point of the panic. In New York, assets at the trust
companies had grown phenomenally between 1890 and 1910, increasing 244
percent during the 10 years ending in 1907, from $396.7 million to
$1,394.0 million. In contrast, national bank assets had grown 97
percent, from $915.2 million to $1,800.0 million, while
state-chartered bank assets had grown 82 percent, from $297 million to
$541.0 million (Barnett 1911, 234-35). Thus the manner in which trust
companies used their assets greatly affected the New York money market
(Moen and Tallman 1992).

Trust companies were much less regulated than national or state banks
in New York. In 1906 New York State instituted a requirement that
trusts maintain reserves at 15 percent of deposits, but only 5 percent
of deposits needed to be kept as currency in the vault. Before that
time trusts simply kept whatever reserves they felt necessary to
conduct business. National bank notes were adequate as cash reserves
for trusts while national banks in central reserve cities like New
York were required to keep a 25 percent reserve in the form of specie
or legal tender (greenbacks or treasury notes but not national bank
notes).

Trusts were originally rather conservative institutions, managing
estates, holding securities, and taking deposits, but by 1907 trusts
were performing most of the functions of banks except issuing bank
notes. Many of the larger trusts specialized in underwriting security
issues. Others wrote mortgages or invested directly in real estate
activities barred or limited for national banks. New York City trusts
had a higher proportion of collateralized loans than did New York City
national banks. Conventional banking wisdom associated collateralized
loans with riskier investments and riskier borrowers. The trusts,
therefore, had an asset portfolio that may have been riskier than
those of other intermediaries.

National and private banks found the investment banking functions of
trusts so useful that many of them gained direct or indirect control
of a trust through holding companies or by placing their associates on
a trust's board of directors. In many instances a bank and its
affiliated trust operated in the same building.

Trusts appear to have provided intermediary functions different from
those of banks. Although the volume of deposits subject to check at
trusts was similar to that at banks, trusts had many fewer checks (in
number and value) written against their demand deposits than did
banks. The check clearings of trusts were only about 7 percent of the
volume of those at banks. Trusts were not then like commercial banks,
whose assets are used as transactions balances by individual
depositors or firms. National banks were part of a network of regional
banks that had correspondent relationships to expedite interregional
transactions (James 1978, 40). Trusts were not part of the
correspondent banking system, so their deposits were more local and
less directly subject to the recurring seasonal strains on funds.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

2010-11-22 Thread CeJ
As I posted before, it's deja vu all over again when you get down to
what human relations create such crises.
JP Morgan himself was caught up in helping to create the crisis,
although he went down in history as one of those guys who helped
overcome it. BTW, I don't necessarily agree with the smithsonianmag's
analysis of what 'caused' the current meltdown. However, I will point
out that a lot of the same things were said about the main players in
1907-8--that they were mysterious, behind-the-scenes people only
acting out of self-interest, that what they did was out of control,
that because of technological innovation in finance and banking, too
much was being done in very little time and it was out of control.



http://www.u-s-history.com/pages/h952.html

Social Issues

In the summer of 1907, the American economy was showing signs of
weakness as a number of business and Wall Street brokerages went
bankrupt. In October, the respected Knickerbocker Trust in New York
City and the ¹Westinghouse Electric Company both failed, touching off
a series of events known as the Panic of 1907.

In the wake of the initial business collapses, stock market prices
plummeted and depositors made a massive run on the nation’s banks. The
U.S. Treasury pumped millions of dollars into weak banks in the hope
of saving them, but the string of collapsed institutions lengthened.

In a reprise of his role during the second Cleveland administration
when the gold standard was under assault, J.P. Morgan acted to restore
order. He summoned the leading bankers and financial experts to his
home where they set up shop in his library. Over the course of the
next three weeks, Morgan and his associates labored to channel money
from the strong institutions to the weaker ones in an effort to keep
them afloat.

The joint effort of the government and the business leaders improved
conditions markedly over the course of several weeks. While the crisis
passed, the finger-pointing began. Reform elements of both political
parties believed that the American banking system was fundamentally
flawed and needed wholesale change. Business leaders, however, held
that Roosevelt's progressive legislation had upset the natural order
of the economy and the government should stop its meddling.

Following the Panic of 1907, the reform elements gradually gained the
upper hand. An emerging consensus affirmed that thorough bank reform
was necessary to provide badly needed currency elasticity (a major
issue in the Panic) and the general soundness of the banking system.
Congress responded by passing stop-gap legislation, the
Aldrich-Vreeland Act (1908), until more thorough actions could be
prepared.

With the passing of the Owen-Glass Federal Reserve Act of 1913, the
Federal Reserve System was created. The Fed was designed to be
flexible and responsive to the economy and independent of politics.
The Fed has evolved through the years by implementing many strict
checks and balances. New departments, the General Accounting Office,
GAO, and the Office of Management  Budget, OMB, were created to audit
the Fed and most other government departments. As a result, the
American economy, and American society are more stable.

See other Theodore Roosevelt domestic activity.

1: Westinghouse Electric was the victim of foul business practices by
J.P. Morgan. Morgan controlled General Electric and Thomas Edison’s
Direct Current, (DC) electrical patents. He contended with
Westinghouse Electric, who controlled Nicola Tesla’s Alternating
Current, (AC) electrical patents. Morgan and Edison strove for control
of all electrical power in America. Edison used deceptive
demonstrations of the supposed increased dangers of AC and Morgan had
spread rumors in Wall Street that Westinghouse was insolvent, causing
Westinghouse stock to collapse, along with the stock of the
Westinghouse backers.


http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history-archaeology/1907_Panic.html

What was the Panic of 1907, and what caused it?
The Panic of 1907 was a six-week stretch of runs on banks in New York
City and other American cities in October and early November of 1907.
It was triggered by a failed speculation that caused the bankruptcy of
two brokerage firms. But the shock that set in motion the events to
create the Panic was the earthquake in San Francisco in 1906. The
devastation of that city drew gold out of the world's major money
centers. This created a liquidity crunch that created a recession
starting in June of 1907.

In 2008 , is the housing market the culprit this time?
Today's panic was triggered by the surprising discovery of higher
defaults on subprime mortgages than anybody expected. This discovery
occurred in late 2006 and early 2007. A panic always follows a real
economic shock; panics are not random occurrences of market emotions.
They are responses to unambiguous, surprising, costly events that
spook investors.

But the first cause of a panic is the boom that precedes the panic.
Every panic has been 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

2010-11-21 Thread CeJ
I don't think either CB or myself is arguing for Nostradamus status
here. What you haven't done is shown anything that would convince me
there has been some categorical change in relations of production and
capital that says this time is different different, other than history
doesn't repeat itself, each time is always different.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

2010-11-20 Thread CeJ
Certainly, the possibility of reducing the
cost of production and increasing profits by introducing technical
improvements operates in the direction of change. But the tendency to
stagnation and decay, which is characteristic of monopoly, continues
to operate, and in some branches of industry, in some countries, for
certain periods of time, it gains the upper hand imperialism is an
immense accumulation of money capital in a few countries, amounting,
as we have seen, to 100,000-50,000 million francs in securities. Hence
the extraordinary growth of a class, or rather, of a stratum of
rentiers, i.e., people who live by ?clipping coupons?, who take no
part in any enterprise whatever, whose profession is idleness. T

And if you read Dickens' last completed novel, Our Mutual Friend, you
get a narrative that depicts very much the same things. I know people
are going to disagree with you and me on this one, but I have to say,
you are right to re-iterate Lenin's points here, here and now. It's a
tautological argument to say that this time it's different somehow
deep down simply because things have changed, or the structures have
changed, or the relations have changed. We of all people know history
doesn't simply repeat itself. But what some wiseacres need to do is
show how in essence, in substance the banking and financial disasters
of the 19th and 20th centuries are categorically different not simply
because it is this time around and things have changed.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Another paradox of state/local rights (stems from Molly Maguires)

2010-11-11 Thread CeJ
And this part is just too weird. The CELDF is located in Chambersburg,
PA (in So. Central PA, about an hour away from Harrisburg, the state
capital) and the center of political action, such as it is, is in
townships in Clarion County, in NW PA, and Clarion County is the home
of my mother, where she still holds a few acres of land that might end
up being fracked for gas. It boggles my imagination that two such
obscure places could be at the center of what will become court cases
of national importance and that I should somehow feel I have a
connection to them. Clarion County is about as hardscrabble as it
gets, an Allegheny wing of full-on Appalachia Hatfields and McCoys
style. I don't think they will have to worry about the groundwater on
my mother's property, it's already completely polluted by oil drilling
and coal mining.

First two stores detail the coming frack for gas boom, the stories
after show township resistance using the help of CELDF.

Chambersburg, PA, my hometown, by the way, has the distinction of
being the town the Confederate burned during the Civil War (they did
twice too). It's about 25 miles west of Gettysburg, about 90 miles
north-northwest of Baltimore, MD (Baltimor and DC are closer than
Philadelphia or Pittsburgh). Clarion is about an hour north-northeast
of Pittsburgh.



http://siliconinvestor.advfn.com/readmsg.aspx?msgid=25907779

Marcellus shale ‘boom’ is taking off in Clarion County

http://www2.theclarionnews.com/General_News/80543.shtml

By Tom DiStefano, Clarion News Writer


Clarion News photo by Tom DiStefano

Excavators, bulldozers and off-road dump trucks were hard at work Aug.
25 leveling sites for two Marcellus gas wells along Knight Town Road
in Elk Township .

ELK TOWNSHIP - There has been a lot of talk about the Marcellus Shale
gas reserves and the drilling boom it is bringing to Pennsylvania ,
but in Clarion County , it has been only talk until this year.

The Marcellus Boom is huge in Southwest and Northeast Pennsylvania ,
but only a few permits have been issued and only one Marcellus well
has been started in Clarion County so far.

Now, the DEP Aug. 27 approved two permits for the big horizontal
Marcellus wells in Elk Township, a vertical Marcellus well has been
drilled in Toby township, and there are others both planned and under
way in neighboring counties.

According to the DEP’s publicly available databases, EQT Production
Inc. of Pittsburgh , part of Equitable Gas, applied for permits to
drill two wells in Elk Township along Knight Town Road between Pine
City and Shippenville.

EQT submitted the permit applications July 29 and DEP spokesperson
Freda Tarbell said her agency approved the permits Aug. 27.

EQT was granted a erosion and sedimentation permit for the well site
by the DEP’s Oil and Gas division July 30; such “ES” permits had been
granted by conservation districts, but DEP earlier this year took over
responsibility for ES permits relating to drilling sites.

Work on preparing the well sites is already under way, with heavy
equipment clearing and leveling many acres for the large rigs required
for drilling deep horizontal wells.

Horizontal Marcellus wells start out vertically, and descend as far as
two miles to the Marcellus Shale beds, curving into a horizontal
direction to extend along the shale bed.

Once at the shale bed, as many as six horizontal boreholes can be
developed in different directions to tap as much of the shale as
possible.

Drilling rigs capable of reaching the Marcellus form are massive,
twice the size of typical shallow well rigs, reaching heights of 150
feet, and configured with an equipment platform 20 feet from ground
level. Rigs for horizontal drilling are even larger, as they require
more horsepower to drive the bits farther.

EQT spokesman Kevin West confirmed his company is planning to drill
two horizontal Marcellus wells in Elk Township , noting the horizontal
techniques maximizes the amount of gas recovered while minimizing
surface disruption compared to drilling multiple vertical wells.

West said he is gathering information on the specifics of the wells in
Elk Township, but said it is likely the company will move in one rig
and drill one well at a time.

A lot of water needed

Tapping this reserve is not easy; drillers use an intensive process
known as hydrofracking to bring gas to the surface.

And hydrofracking needs massive amounts of water – water mixed with
special and secret recipes of chemicals and sand pumped under high
pressure into the shale until it forces the gas up and out.

Water comes back out of the well and must be treated to remove the
fracking chemicals and the salts and metals it may have picked up
underground.

Tarbell said the DEP has approved a plan by EQT to purchase the water
needed from Pennsylvania American Water Company’s system based in
Clarion.

Jake Gentile, Pennsylvania American field operations supervisor, said
EQT wants to purchase bulk water totaling between 4 and 8 million
gallons 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Another paradox of state/local rights (stems from Molly Maguires)

2010-11-11 Thread CeJ
Chambersburg is an exurb of Harrisburg-York-Lancaster, but also
Baltimore and DC. It's the DC connection that probably led the CELDF
to locate there--along with the cheap rents. Here is their
journalistic, ready-for-media write up of the Licking Township
ordinance (which will probably lead to a shooting war between
pro-fracking/dumping vs. anti-fracking/dumping factions if I know
Clarion County).

http://www.yesmagazine.org/planet/pennsylvania-township-declares-freedom-from-fracking

Pennsylvania Township Declares Freedom from Fracking
Licking, Pennsylvania defies state law by banning corporations from
dumping fracking wastewater.
Document Actions

by Mari Margil, Ben Price
posted Oct 27, 2010

Natural Gas Drilling, image by Helen Slottje

Photo by Helen Slottje

In Pennsylvania—a central target for natural gas drilling and the
controversial drilling practice known as horizontal hydraulic
fracturing, or fracking—local communities don’t have the legal
authority to keep unwanted drilling from happening.

As fracking's impacts on water safety make headlines and public
resistance to drilling grows, some towns have tried to use land use
zoning to keep drilling companies out—but they can’t use zoning laws
to stop an activity the state has declared legal. (At best, they can
zone where the corporations site their drill pads. But since drilling
is not vertical but horizontal, there’s no way to contain its impact
on a community’s water and environment.)
Taking local control

One small community in western Pennsylvania wanted more say over what
happens within its borders. Licking Township, population 500, chose to
defy state law with its own local ordinance, banning corporations from
dumping fracking wastewater within its borders. Licking sits atop the
Marcellus Shale, a geological formation that contains large and mostly
untapped natural gas reserves. On Oct. 12, 2010, the Licking Township
Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to ban corporations from
dumping fracking wastewater within the township.

When it comes to land use issues and the preservation of important
resources, the local community is best suited to set priorities as
they feel impacts most acutely, said Mik Robertson, chairman of the
Licking Township Supervisors.

Pennsylvania's preferential laws for drilling companies are not
unique. For years, the drilling industry has worked closely with
government to pave the way for widespread drilling, eliminating
regulatory barriers that may stand in its way. The so-called
“Halliburton Loophole” was inserted into the federal Safe Drinking
Water Act to exempt companies drilling for natural gas, including
those drilling in the Marcellus Shale (which extends from New York to
West Virginia) from having to comply. Corporations have also been
exempted from a host of other laws and regulations, and states have
enacted laws pre-empting municipalities from taking steps to reign in
the industry.

The residents of Licking felt that they should be the ones to decide
what happens in their township. People have the right to determine
what is suitable for their community, as they are most directly
affected by intended or unintended consequences of resource
extraction,” said Robertson.
The dangers of fracking

The residents of Licking aren't alone in their concerns about
fracking. Across the Appalachian highlands, residents worried about
the health effects of fracking have been calling on their elected
officials to protect them. In New York, a citizen movement convinced
the state Senate to place a 9-month moratorium on the practice while
its safety is evaluated. However, the moratorium is only temporary and
has not been voted into state law.
In adopting the ordinance, Licking joins more than a dozen other
communities in legally recognizing the rights of nature and
subordinating corporate constitutional rights to the rights of human
and natural communities.

Fracking involves pumping water laced with sand and a cocktail of
chemicals underground to fracture the shale rock and release the
natural gas. In the process, thousands of gallons of toxic wastewater
are produced and can contaminate waterways and drinking water.
Natural gas wells are often driven through aquifers.

The impacts from drilling can include exploding wells, groundwater
contamination, and fish kills. Recently, the Pennsylvania Department
of Agriculture quarantined cattle believed to have drunk from a frack
wastewater spill.  Their milk was no longer considered safe to drink.

A new study by researchers at the University of Buffalo found that
fracking also releases uranium trapped in the rock, raising additional
health concerns.

Collateral damage includes lost property value, drying up of mortgage
loans for prospective home buyers, and the threatened loss of organic
certification for farmers. And it’s not only rural communities feeling
the pressure. In Pittsburgh and Buffalo (both of which straddle the
Marcellus), gas extraction corporations have quietly 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] critique of the ideology of the Tea Party needed W

2010-11-10 Thread CeJ
Tenthers (the Tenth Amendment cult) are largely people who move in the
area of law, scholarly activity, intelligentsia, but I think it is
clear that they overlap with the Tea Party activities, which tends
towards rallies and media events.

I'm not sure how coherent tentherism is when you get to its
dissemination among the 'masses'.

The irony of states rights as an expression of it is that it destroys
the constitution it claims to uphold--that is not just incoherence but
a destructive paradox.

I think in actual practice, though, its a constitutionally oriented
form of right-wing libertarianism, and the actual paradox there is:
fiscal conservative but unwilling to do anything about runaway
military budgets. Perhaps even more so than libertarians who want to
stand outside the constitution and even the inherited precedent of
applied constitutional law and court decisions of the past 200 years.
That is because most would when forced to decide say that the only
thing the federal government should do is provide for the common
defense, and that would then be used to justify 1.5 trillion dollars a
year on military, national security, intelligence (and this figure
goes even higher if you factor in legacy costs, such as servicing that
portion of the debt created by deficits that are caused by runaway
military spending, but also veterans' benefits, and militarized
foreign aid, such as 'foreign aid' going to Israel, Egypt, Pakistan
and this is really most US foreign aid).

This is however why whether they are tea party people, tenthers,
fiscal conservatives, social conservatives, Christian reactionaries,
etc. they all fit together once they get to Congress--that is they
compete to get more federal spending for their district, state,
important factions of their voters, their local party people, etc.

I have to disagree about less government. In practice, the past 30
years has given us ever more people employed by the government, not
even counting military active duty (which, without a large conscripted
force, seems small, but is actually enlarged by the use of reserve and
guard on active duty). I doubt there is another country in the OECD
with the levels of government employment as the US. Certainly not
Japan, which actually has a rather tiny level of government employment
when compared to the US.

Where are the government jobs? School districts, municipal and county
governments, LAW ENFORCEMENT AND PRISONS, and of course the
military-industrial complex (which has been privatized so to quite an
extent through a proliferation of contractors, sub-contractors,
sub-sub-contractors, etc.).

You might find this interesting, although I have to disagree with its
idea that white working class voters vote against their interests when
they vote Republican or right-wing populist independent. To make that
argument you would have to show that the Democratic Party or some
other viable political power ready to take power does represent their
interests--or die trying to show that. As the presidency of Bushwar
Obomber shows all too well, his health care plan doesn't provide
health cover to working Americans. It's a 'compromise' that unifies
the divided and competing interests of private health care providers,
big pharma, and those citizens who already have (what they believe to
be) sufficient coverage--a compromise that will probably hold stable
for 3-5 years and then collapse when prices can't inflate beyond the
system's ability to pay those prices (which was also the source of a
sense of crisis when BO promised health care).

http://prospect.org/cs/articles?article=rally_round_the_true_constitution

Today, however, the tenthers tap into the same populist outrage that inspired 
a generation of working-class religious conservatives to enthusiastically 
vote against their own interests. Fox News star Glenn Beck exhorts his 
audience to be a constitutional watchdog for America by lining up against 
health-care reform, cap-and-trade legislation, and the stimulus package. Gov. 
Rick Perry of Texas, who enthusiastically backed a tenther state sovereignty 
resolution, told a right-wing radio host that he is willing and ready for 
the fight if this administration continues to try to force their very 
expansive government philosophy down our collective throats. 
Tenther-inspired claims that federal spending violates the Constitution are 
so common at tea party protests that it is impossible to tell where the 
tenthers end and the tea baggers begin. 

More important, there is something fundamentally authoritarian about the 
tenther constitution. Social Security, Medicare, and health-care reform are 
all wildly popular, yet the tenther constitution would shackle our democracy 
and forbid Congress from enacting the same policies that the American people 
elected them to advance. After years of raging against mythical judges who 
legislate from the bench, tenther conservatives now demand a constitution 
that will not let anyone legislate at all. 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] critique of the ideology of the Tea Party needed W

2010-11-10 Thread CeJ
You also have a huge 'ghost' force of 'shadow workers' who comprise a
quasi-civil service. And the info. in this article is over 10 years
old, pre 9/11 and the 'national security' bubble of the
Bushwar-Obomber years.

See:
http://www.govexec.com/features/0199/0199s1.htm

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Molly Maguires

2010-11-10 Thread CeJ
They are still a near-forbidden topic for re-examination in US
history. The inherited view has long struck me as total bull. You know
also from the 19th century, there is still persistent in the US an
inherited view that the Wilimington Riot was an event where uppity
blacks got the commeuppance they deserved? If you want to show fascism
in US history actually resulted in a political coup, that would be a
good set of events to analyze too. And that inherited view seems to
have come to us from influential NORTHERNERS.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Tea Party

2010-11-10 Thread CeJ
I know I'm being too harsh on Obama. I want him to leave office after
this term or the second term renouncing the military interventionist
policies, slashing the military budgets, and telling it like it is to
Americans about the death throes of the imperium and why their society
and political economy fails them.

That would not make him a SUCCESSFUL president in the eyes of most
Americans, I suspect.

As I have said before, a successful president is one, in the view of
the 'general public', who transcends the interests of the narrow
interest groups who financed his or her way into the Repugnicratic
system, somehow transcends those interests, in domestic policy, in
foreign policy, etc.

It's been a while since a president has succeeded on such terms. There
might have been a sense that Clinton did by the end of his second
term, but he had also relented and signed the Democratic Party onto
'regime change' now (not later) in Iraq. And transcendance seems to
have been making the Democrats the sponsors of 'welfare reform' and
'regime change'.

In the case of Obama, he represents a coming together, however
ephemeral and however shallow, a much broader coalition of interests
and forces. There is no where to go on the accepted political spectrum
for him to move in order to transcend that, if that sort of
transcendance is even possible.

That is why I think his best success as president would be to fail and
tell like it really is--because he might yet get enough interest for
it to mean something. So far he has shown himself to be a very
cautious leader. I doubt if anyone gets even a fraction of as far as
he did without being very cautious.

Like Carter I want to know what the guy really thinks.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Tea Party

2010-11-09 Thread CeJ
I have been scouring websites in the USA to try to find a good socialist
critique of the ideology of the Tea Party.  But so far I have found
nothing.  The WSWS website says absolutely nothing to critique the ideology
of the Tea Party.  It seems that many on the left are adapting to the
reactionary ideas of white sociologically working class men.


There is no real Tea Party. It's the usual instigators trying to get
white working class to vote Republican. The basic idea is that playing
up nationalism, anti-immigration, and anger over economic malaise can
keep these people voting Republican, especially in the South and the
West. It's the usual 'insider as outsider' story of right wing
politics. This time around the interests that fund such activities had
to go outside the Republican Party mainstream, at least during the
primaries, in order to get more people involved. Because quite a few
are right-wing independents, that strategy actually makes good sense.
Republicans, however, are often running against their own party. That
is because they are pork barrel politicians locally, with pork barrel
being where the pork is--military and security budgets. Ideologically
such conservatives will say they are fiscal conservatives but they
will actually compete for the federal budgets to go to their states,
their voting districts and about the only thing they will actually
agree on with their colleagues in the House and Senate is the need to
increase the military budgets so everyone gets what they want--more
spending in their state and local districts.

The significant shift this time around, and one that means quite
likely that Obama is a one-term president, is that so many
governorships went Republican. That means they will control the voting
in the presidential election. It will take some doing to unseat the
president and his party from the executive branch. I'm not sure though
that Obama can use the same strategies that kept Clinton in the WH.
About the only thing remarkable about Clinton when you get right down
to it is that boy sure knew how to win elections.

I wonder if the challenge to the Republican establishment won't come
from the Palin types but rather the Bloomberg types. OTOH, neither
party has really managed to keep everything stitched together when a
white male ETHNIC is involved--Iacocca, Cuomo, Giuliani, now
Bloomberg. If he challenges as an Independent, he could spend billions
in futility. If he tries to integrate into the Republican Party, they
will have a hard time selling him and branding him for the nationwide
election. If Obama had been caucasian (e.g., dark-featured caucasian,
like some Arabs or Turks or Persians), that combined with his funny
name would have doomed him. A plurality of American voters tends to
not like ethnic Catholics, ethnic Jews, and African-American
politicians (the ones with real African-American community roots, like
slave ancestors, like parents and uncles and aunts who participated in
the civil rights movements, etc).

But Obama  was seen as an 'African-American' who said 'white
Anglo-Saxon' things most of the time and this made him the darling of
a temporarily expanded Democratic Party, in which young and
African-American and even anti-war lefties participated for the
presidential election. That he managed to split the independent vote
to favor the Democrats also helped. The guy had a lot of things to say
when he was running, most of which I didn't think much of at the time.
Now it seems he doesn't even have much to say.

As for a Palin presidency--she is about as qualified as anyone else
the Democrats or Republicans are going to let into the race. I don't
think even the Republicans can sell and brand a woman though,
especially one who can't read the script much of the time and
extemporizes. What self-respecting Repug man would want to be her VP
candidate?

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Election Day Thoughts

2010-11-03 Thread CeJ
The turning over of the House of Reps to the Republicans demonstrates
clearly one thing (to me at least):
That American voters, as diverse as they are, tend to prefer the
incoherence of the Republicans to the incoherence of the Democrats.

The incoherence of the Republicans is the idea that they stand for
'fiscal responsibility' while they plan to spend even more of the
federal budgets on the military, intelligence and 'national
security'--indeed the Republicans announced that the day of the
election.

The incoherence of the Democrats is that they would talk about the
need to reduce military spending while going along with the budgets
the national security bureaucracy asks for year after year--and then
adding to them with an expanded 'mission' in Afghanistan.

The incoherence of the Republicans is that they would of course
consult with key allies in major foreign policy decisions but announce
to their supporters in the US that no one but Americans influenced
foreign policy.

The incoherence of the Democrats is that they would make a big deal
about consulting key allies, go ahead and act more or less
unilaterally, and then give speeches about how the US has a
responsibility to consult key allies and pretend that the US obeys by
international laws.

The incoherence of the Republicans is signing on to crap 'health care
coverage' patterned after the state of Mass. (the success of a
Republican governor there) while saying that America and Americans
have the best health care in the world and don't need major reform.

The incoherence of the Democrats is saying it's tragic that up to 80
million Americans don't have access to health insurance and even
health care (because they lack insurance) and then going on to sign
onto crap coverage patterned after the Republican crap plan piloted in
the stae of Mass.

I could go on, but I think the point is: The Republicans are much
better at selling the imperialist fantasy vision of America at the
center of the world, America right or wrong, America the chosen people
with a godly mission to make the rest of the world more like
America--not because Americans want that but the rest of the world
wants it and needs it.

It's hard to make much of mid-term elections when so few people
actually vote in them. It's the presidential elections where you see
so much of the fantasy machine cranked up to a level beyond human
capacity to absorb it (the last best hope of mankind rests on one
man's shoulders, ladies and gentlement I give you Prophet and Messiah,
the next President of the US). The religion of America really is
America (which is an ideology as circular as it is incoherent), and
until something comes along to shatter that, I'm afraid the world's
only superpower can't enjoy OECD levels of anything, while it drags
its key OECD allies and satellites down with it.

The Republican H of R won't be able to turn back the clock and revert
America back to the mortgage securities and commodities speculation
bubbles of 2000-2008. The question is where will it and a mostly
willing Democratic Senate and WH take the US in dealing with the bad
economy and the unviable fiscal situation?

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Election Day Thoughts

2010-11-03 Thread CeJ
Outside the orthodoxy of the two-party US, Kucinich retained his
congressional seat.


VICTORY: We won, 53% - 44%

Dear Friends,

Your support made it possible for our campaign to have a strong media
presence in the closing days of the election, so that we were able to
withstand the powerful anti-incumbent tide which swept across the
nation. Five incumbent House Democrats lost in Ohio. The entire state
ticket went down. Democrats lost control of the Ohio House. Yet, in
the midst of this electoral disaster we survived because of your
constant help. People forget that when I was first elected to the
House in 1996, I won a seat which was held by a Republican incumbent.

I was able to strengthen the district through constituent service and
focusing in Washington on economic issues which related to the
practical aspirations of people: Jobs, trade, health care, education,
Social Security, pensions, as well as environment and peace. I have
spent the past decade and more challenging the Democratic Party as
well as the Republican Party on the central tenets of an economic
orthodoxy which tolerates massive unemployment, disinvestment,
acceleration of the wealth of America upwards and endless war.

You have made it possible for me to be your voice on many issues of
importance to the people of the 10th District and United States. I
begin each day with grateful heart and thoughts of those who make my
life and my work possible, people like you.

Thank you and much love,
Dennis

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Wouldn't this have made a really cool t-shirt?

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
When the single was marketed in 1989, the record company put a sticker over
the upper left corner of the flag, of course.



http://www.mattscdsingles.com/acatalog/1195%20new.jpg
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[Marxism-Thaxis] cool version of the american 'freedom eagle'

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51vEau-yJJL._SL500_AA280_.jpg

CJ

-- 
ELT in Japan
http://www.eltinjapan.com/

Japan Higher Education Outlook
http://japanheo.blogspot.com/

We are Feral Cats
http://wearechikineko.blogspot.com/
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[Marxism-Thaxis] The REAL Song of the South

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
Play for the good ole boys and see what reaction you get.

The songwriter said of the song:

Was done at the Power Plant with Robin Millar producing. Robin is one of
the nicest people I have ever worked with and has remained a source of good
advice and inspiration. The song is about apartheid and I kind of liked the
idea of using a Disney title for it to show how the media exploit real
suffering for ratings. — Stuart Adamson, Restless Natives  Rarities liner
notes


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1BlKFR_43PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESrhBgj4EZ4feature=related


I kind of like how this guy tried to do socialist agit-prop in the pop-rock
anthem, but that also made his group pariahs on American radio back in the
80s (when radio and MTV airplay were the only way you could get to an
American audience).

He personally financed a music tour of the Soviet Union. I think this is the
only case of a 'western' big label rock act doing that. Others went on the
invitation of the Soviet government, with corporate sponsors. BC and Stuart
Adamson couldn't get that because, ironically enough, he supported
socialist, communist politics.

CJ
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] The REAL Song of the South

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
Interesting that the band's next album did not get a release in the
US, despite the fact that all their previous albums had decent sales
there (with little airplay).

http://www.amazon.com/Live-Moscow-Peace-Our-Time/dp/B002V0JBLG


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

2009 two disc (CD + NTSC/Region 0 DVD) live archive release from the
Scottish quartet. In 1988, the Iron Curtain still existed. In
September of that year, Big Country became the first Western band to
play live in the Soviet Union promoted by a private individual (not
the state) and before the general paying public (not an invited
audience). The band released their Top Five album Peace In Our Time in
September of 1988 and, after launching the album at the Russian
Embassy in London, took 286 people to Moscow. The concert was recorded
and a documentary was made from the Embassy launch through the return
from Moscow. Both the concert and documentary are on the DVD disc
while the concert is also included on a separate CD. Features stunning
live versions of tracks from their first four albums including 'Look
Away', 'King Of Emotion', 'Wonderland' and 'In A Big Country'. Track.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Argument for historical existence of barter

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
RE: Argument for historical existence of barter

I remember being told by an American history professor about how corn
and rye whiskies were used as 'currency' for trade, from Pittsburgh to
New Orleans.

See:

http://projects.exeter.ac.uk/RDavies/arian/northamerica.html

Forms of Money in use in the American Colonies

The British colonies in north America suffered a chronic shortage of
official coins with which to carry out their normal, everyday
commercial activities. An indication of the severity of this shortage
and of the resultant wide variety of substitutes is given by the fact
that during 1775 in North Carolina alone as many as seventeen
different forms of money were declared to be legal tender. However, it
should be remembered that all these numerous forms of means of payment
had a common accounting basis in the pounds, shillings and pence of
the imperial system.

The main sources which provided the colonists with their essential
money supplies fall into five groups.

   1. Traditional native currencies such as furs and wampum which were
essential for frontier trading with the indigenous population but
thereafter were widely adopted by the colonists themselves, e.g. in
1637 Massachusetts declared white wampum legal tender for sums up to
one shilling, a limit raised substantially in 1643.
   2. The so-called Country Pay or Country Money such as tobacco,
rice, indigo, wheat, maize, etc. - cash crops in more than one
sense. Like the traditional Indian currencies these were mostly
natural commodities. Tobacco was used as money in and around Virginia
for nearly 200 years, so lasting about twice as long as the US gold
standard.
   3. Unofficial coinages, mostly foreign, and especially Spanish and
Portuguese coins. These played an important role in distant as well as
local trade. Not all the unofficial coins were foreign. John Hall set
up a private mint in Massachusetts in 1652 and his popular pine-tree
shillings and other coins circulated widely until the mint was forced
to close down in 1684.
   4. The scarce but official British coinage.
   5. Paper currency of various kinds, particularly in the colonies'
later years.

The first State issue of notes (in north America) was made in 1690 by
the Massachusetts Bay Colony. These notes, or bills of credit. were
issued to pay soldiers returning from an expedition to Quebec. The
notes promised eventual redemption in gold or silver and could be used
immediately to pay taxes and were accepted as legal tender. The
example of Massachusetts was followed by other colonies who thought
that by printing money they could avoid the necessity to raise taxes.

Another early form of paper money used in north America was tobacco
notes. These were certificates attesting to the quality and quantity
of tobacco deposited in public warehouses. These certificates
circulated much more conveniently than the actual leaf and were
authorized as legal tender in Virginia in 1727 and regularly accepted
as such throughout most of the eighteenth century.

In addition to the State issues, a number of public banks began
issuing loans in the form of paper money secured by mortgages on the
property of the borrowers. In these early cases the term bank meant
simply the collection or batch of bills of credit issued for a
temporary period. If successful, reissues would lead to a permanent
institution or bank in the more modern sense of the term. One of the
best examples was the Pennsylvania Land Bank which authorized three
series of note issues between 1723 and 1729. This bank received the
enthusiastic support of Benjamin Franklin who in 1729 published his
Modest Enquiry into the Nature and Necessity of a Paper Currency. His
advocacy did not go unrewarded as the Pennsylvania Land Bank awarded
Franklin the contract for printing its third issue of notes.

Gradually the British government began to restrict the rights of the
colonies to issue paper money. In 1740 a dispute arose involving a
Land Bank or Manufactury Scheme in Boston, and the following year
the British parliament ruled that the bank was illegal in that it
transgressed the provisions of the Bubble Act of 1720 (passed after
the collapse of the South Sea Bubble - one of the most notorious
outbreaks of financial speculation in history). Restrictions were
subsequently tightened because some colonies, including Massachusetts
and especially Rhode Island, issued excessive quantities of paper
money thus causing inflation. Finally, in 1764 a complete ban on paper
money (except when needed for military purposes) was extended to all
the colonies.
The American Revolution and the War of 1812

When he was in London in 1766 Benjamin Franklin tried in vain to
convince Parliament of the need for a general issue of colonial paper
money, but to no avail. The constitutional struggle between Britain
and the colonies over the right to issue paper money was a significant
factor in provoking the American Revolution.

When the war broke out the monetary brakes 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Why the IMF Meetings Failed

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
And while on my 80s nostalgia/obscure agit-prop kick (I suppose I
could have posted this to the barter-money thread).


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r7Bq9YdDVc8

Style Council Money-go-round Lyrics


It's no good praying to the powers that be
'Cause they won't shake the roots of the money tree
No good praying to the pristine alters
Waiting for the blessing with Holy water
They like the same old wealth in the same old hands
Means the same old people stay old people stay in command
Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
They got it wrapped up tight, they got it safe and sound
Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
As you fall from grace and hit the ground

Too much money in too few places
Only puts a smile on particular faces
Said too much power in not enough hands
Makes me think get rich quick; take all I can
They're too busy spending on the means of destruction
To ever spend a penny on some real construction

Watch the money-go-round; watch the money-go-round
They amuse themselves as they fool around
Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
Do like they say, make them vulnerable

No good looking to the Empire corners,
Civilization built on slaughter
Carrying hopes and carrying maps
The spinless ones fall in their laps
The brave and the bold are the ones to be fooled
With a diet of lies by the Kipling school

Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
But I just can't help being cynical
Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
Do like I say, make me wonderful

Their morals are clean and their clear
They bend your arm and they bend your ear
Said they bend your mind as you talk in circles
Bend over forwards, this won't hurt you
Till there's blood in your lap; blood on your hands
Watch the money-go-round; watch the money-go-round
Come spend a penny, go out with a pound
Watch the money-go-round; watch the money-go-round
As you fall from grace and hit the ground

(On the money-go-round, you wanna get on but it won't slow down)

The need your votes and you know where to send 'em
Be we don't get the choice of a public referendum
On all the real issues that affect our lives
Like the USA base to which we play midwife
Take a cruise and forget this scene
Said come back later when the slates wiped clean

Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
Born of woman, killed by man
Watch the money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
Do like they pray, make it wonderful

The good and righteous sing their hymns
The crimpoline dresses who have no sins
Christians by day, killers in war
The hypocrites who know what they're fighting for
Killing for peace, freedom and truth
But they're too old to go so they send the youth

Watch the money-go-round, watch the money-go-round
I don't think he was an astronaut
Watch the money-go-round, watch the money-go-round
I must insist - he was a Socialist!

Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
They got it wrapped up tight, they got it safe and sound
Watch your money-go-round; watch your money-go-round
As you fall from grace and hit the ground

http://www.metrolyrics.com/moneygoround-club-mix-lyrics-the-style-council.html

longer version, more lyrics too

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Bernero Takes New Tactic in Fighting Unfair and Fraudulent Foreclosures

2010-10-26 Thread CeJ
RE: [Marxism-Thaxis] Bernero Takes New Tactic in Fighting Unfair and
Fraudulent Foreclosures

These are tactics that came to prominence in Michael Moore's film,
Capitalism: A Love Story.

I think he charts how it started in Dade County Florida and spread nationwide.

That film has a lot more going for it than against it, if you ask me.
It's his best film since Roger and Me.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] White America Has Lost Its Mind

2010-10-06 Thread CeJ
It's interesting how more and more the 'brown' military the US sends
to control and kill Iraqis and Afghans looks more and more like the
very people they are controlling and killing. This is especially true
if you look at who are actually the dog soldiers doing things like
military convoys and foot patrols in non-glory military specialities
(lower enlisted MP, ammunition clerk, a 'specialist' on an armored
vehicle'). It's even more true, apparently, of the 'dog sailors' the
Navy gave up to the Army in order to fill all these shitty jobs.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to exist

2010-09-29 Thread CeJ
In general, the Communist Parties agreed on such. The CPUSA certainly
wasn't the only one ( smile)

But the original point was and is: CPs haven't ALWAYS supported the
creation of a Jewish state in Palestine (now called Israel), nor did
they do so before many US and UK politicians who were most decidedly
not of the left (see the thread title, taken from something you wrote
on LBO-T). Most likely one key issue hardly discussed in this
otherwise good piece at ahram is that Germany ceded territory to
Poland, and Poland didn't want to re-settle the Jews, nor did the Jews
want to stay in a ruined Poland. So perhaps one Soviet Union goal was
to make peace and settle things in E. Europe by getting rid of the
Jewish refugees and survivors of the Holocaust.

It basically goes back to a shift in policy that came out of the
Soviet Union, obviously instigated by Stalin and his top advisors.


http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/2008/897/op6.htm

 Crucially, there are two curious, unexpected, twists to the tale
concerning the superpower states that had just embarked upon their
Cold War rivalry, the US and USSR. All those interested in this
intriguing and surprising history would be rewarded in reading an
enlightening paper by French historian Laurent Rucker, who utilises
voluminous primary research from Soviet archives (Moscow's surprise:
The Soviet-Israeli Alliance of 1947-1949, Woodrow Wilson Centre for
International Scholars, Working Paper 46), the main points of which I
elaborate upon, whilst drawing my own conclusions.

Put briefly, there is compelling evidence to suggest that had the USSR
not supported the partition of Palestine and Israel's creation, such a
partition would not have happened. On the one hand, the US's support
for the partition plan was by no means as strong as is ordinarily
imagined. We surely need to recognise that the political terrain in
the US with regard to a Jewish state was very different 60 years ago
than it is now. On the other hand, the USSR's late change of stance
and its uncompromising support for the Zionist project during the
fateful years of 1947-48 was arguably the decisive factor.

Recognising that it had no weight in the Middle East, during World War
II the Soviet Union opened embassies in Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq
in an attempt to exert some influence. A corollary to this endeavour
was weakening and removing Britain's influence in the region and
somehow forging divisions between the UK and the US. It was this
thinking that drove Soviet policies. When the Anglo-American Committee
of Inquiry into the Fate of European Jews was set up in January 1946,
the erstwhile ally USSR, which had a legitimate interest in the issue
as there were about five million Jews living under Soviet rule, was
simply excluded, the crucial reason being that Britain and the US did
not want Stalin to poke his nose into the Palestine issue.

Yet after the war, there arose the issue of some quarter of a million
displaced Jews in Eastern Europe that was now under the Soviet sphere
of influence. It was the issue of the settlement of the bulk of these
that proved fundamental to what happened. The Soviets and East
European regimes failed to do what was incumbent upon them, that is,
to re-settle displaced Jews in their old homes and counter any
hostility from the local population. Naturally, therefore, many of
these displaced persons wished to emigrate, the preferred option, and
understandably so, being the US which had not suffered destruction
during the war. But the US operated a closed-door policy to the
tired, poor huddled Jewish masses yearning to be free -- thus
enabling the second preferred option, Palestine, to come to the fore.
This conveniently suited the Americans and the Soviets, as well as the
East European regimes (none of whom wanted the displaced persons) so
that the Zionist programme of settling European Jewry in Palestine
quickly gathered momentum. Britain, however, was at first wary as it
did not wish to alienate the Arab world.

The Zionist organisations had foresight and forged links with Soviet
diplomats, quietly calling for support for their designs. This,
however, did not immediately lead to the USSR agreeing to a future
Jewish state in Palestine (which the USSR had never supported), though
the seeds were sown and came to fruition surprisingly soon. The
official USSR position was for the removal of the British mandate and
troops and for a unitary Palestine to be granted independence but
under UN trusteeship (meaning, under joint control of the big
three powers). In March 1947, the Near East Department of the Soviet
UN delegation accordingly argued for a single democratic Palestine
that ensures that the peoples living there will enjoy equal national
and democratic rights.

A month later, there was a dramatic U- turn. At the extraordinary
session of the UN General Assembly, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs
Andrei Gromyko was instructed to present the new line. For the first
time the USSR 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to exist

2010-09-29 Thread CeJ
CB:  I'm talking about now and for about 60 years, the Soviet Union
and most CP's supported the right of Israel to exist. That's the issue
I'm addressing

And my points were (1) 60 years ago is not always, (2) there was an
abrupt shift coming from the SU and this explains the toe-the-line
phenomenon of many, and not all CPs toed the line (Yugoslavia, I'm
thinking perhaps Greece but I could well be wrong on that). Also, it's
one thing to say you support the right of a Jewish state/Zionist
state/Israel to exist within the framework of  two states as worked
out in the UN plans (however unfair those plans were), it's altogether
a different thing to say you support that right while the rights of
the Palestinians are trampled by the very state you say you are
supporting the existence of.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to

2010-09-29 Thread CeJ
CB: Communist PartieS have supported the right of Israel to exist
is a true statement that I made earlier on this thread. You questioned
it. I presented proof positive that Communist PartieS have supported
the right of Isael to exist.

I questioned your statement about always supported--see thread title
if you want to get lawyerly on me.
And that should have been qualified by the FACT that not all
communists or CPs did, not before 1948,
not in 1948, and not after 1948. There is nothing essential to
communism that required support of a European
Zionist colonization of Palestine, not in 1930, not in 1940, not in
1947-8 and not now.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Fidel Castro Blasts Ahmadinejad As Anti-Semitic

2010-09-29 Thread CeJ
Yes, due to the growth in population in Latin America and the greater
spread of TV and radio, no doubt.

I meant 'don't listen' in the sense of 'don't heed'. Reading through
the crap on A., the guy really doesn't know what he is talking about,
but that never stopped him before. I still think Castro has been more
right than wrong on most matters, but not this one, if the reports
from zionist bloggers are to be believed.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Castro says remark that Cuban model doesn't work misinterpreted

2010-09-29 Thread CeJ
Now it's starting to make sense, even if through a shit-coated lens
like the Atlantic. The American reporters wish to emphasize tangential
elements and 'back story'--Castro (long accused of Antisemitism) shows
his humanity by deploring Holocaust denial and supposedly mentioning
Iranian leaders in the same breath. But then he used this American
zionist reporter to help make publicity for Cuba's economic reforms.
And the seemingly offhand remark along the lines of : Even the Cuban
system doesn't work for Cuba anymore, it means something like: we are
getting ready for 'liberalization' and privatization of some sort. But
looking at Castro's own clarifications it seems more to say: all
systems of governance and economic organization have to change over
time, so why are the Americans still so keen on promoting their failed
capitalism (in perfect accord with A.'s speech at the poverty
conference in NY)?
And there is probably no one on the earth more aware than Castro of
how Cuba still has to fit into a world system of trade, money flows,
communication, diplomacy etc. DOMINATED by the hegemon 150 km to the
north.

BTW, the one article mentions Kevin Costner's '13 Days'. This is a
surprisingly good movie. About the only part that misfires is in the
conversations with certain air force pilots about the actions taken
over Cuba--a bit goofily patriotic (as if the Cubans had no right to
fire on any US aircraft invading their airspace). Actually rather
scary too if a WH aid to the president had to orchestrate military
actions by skipping the downward chain of command.

Perhaps the most interesting issue the film raises is this idea that
the US and USSR came to agreement, that the US would never really
overtly attack Cuba again, and that the US has honored this agreement
from then until now. Most likely Bushwa thought about it, but was
probably advised (1) Cuban military forces are, in their own theater
of operation, pretty good, with Cuba hard to invade (it isn't like
they could roll in tanks there) and (2) Putin would probably mount a
vigorous defense of some sort.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] ??Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to exist??

2010-09-28 Thread CeJ
Saw this over on the Liberal/Lily-livered Bored/Bourgeois Observer/Oaf
(LBO Talk) list and thought I would comment. I am no expert on this
matter, so correct me where I'm wrong, but it seems to me you are
wrong CB:

CB: Actually, Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to 
exist. The Soviet Union supported Israel establishment before the US did. So, 
that's not new.

This is junk history put out there by the Zionists. Yugoslavia, for
example, abstained on the vote for the UN to take over from the
British mandate in creating a two-state, three-territory solution.

I'm not sure if the Soviet leadership vacillated as much as the
American side--the American side didn't agree on what to do. Marshall
was dead set against the creation of a separate 'Jewish state'.

The US and USSR both agreed at the UN on the creation of some sort of
three-territory solution that was to follow the British Mandate. In
votes at the UN, I don't think it matters who voted first since the
votes are done in some pre-set order (alphabetical order? alphabetical
order in French? Not sure) and most delegates vote according to what
their leadership tells them to vote. So big deal if the USSR voted
ahead of the US at the UN.

Also, it's semantic, but remember the support and/or votes were for,
in part, the creation of a Jewish entity as part of a three-territory
solution, not something standalone and rogue called 'Israel', and in
this three-territory solution in which the UN was supposed to play a
key role, taking over from the British and their mandate. And it would
take votes and actions form the Security Council to make something
like this work, and it's rather obvious that this never happened--they
never made it work.

As for who recognized Israel DE FACTO first, it was Israel, whose
leadership declared its existence (in Israeli law this is DE JURE
too). Or perhaps it was the UK, who had officially ended its mandate
so Israel could be self-declared a minute later. The US was quick to
follow in recognition--minutes later. As to whether it was de facto or
de jure, I'll let legal scholars determine that--if it wasn't de jure,
why did Truman bother to sign something? If it was de jure, it seems
unconstitutional, but when did that get in the way of post-war foreign
policy?

It took a year for the UN to admit/recognize Israel as a state, in May
1949. Once admitted, Israel became nothing but a violent, rogue
settler state warring obstacle to solving all the problems that the
UN-driven partition had created.

Just what is your date, CB, for the USSR recognizing the state of
Israel? Wikipedia, without source, says 3 days after Israel was
declared the USSR de jure recognized the state. So I guess the
argument rests on what is the validity of Truman's declaration 11
minutes after Ben Gurion's.

See:

http://www.wrmea.com/backissues/0591/9105017.htm


Clifford closes with the well-known story of how a Jewish Agency
employee driving to the White House with the request for recognition
of the Jewish state was overhauled by another Jewish Agency
employee. Epstein had just heard on the radio that the new state was
to be called Israel and instructed the second employee to write in
that name in ink before handing over the request for recognition to
the White House.

Meanwhile, General Marshall agreed that, although he could not support
President Truman on the issue, he would not oppose it. When the news
was broken to the American delegation at the UN, which had been lining
up votes for continued trusteeship, US Ambassador Warren Austin left
the building in order not to be present when US recognition of Israel
was announced, just 11 minutes after the state's creation. Dean Rusk
subsequently had to rush to the UN to talk US delegation members out
of resigning en masse in protest.

Lovett, who Clifford believes talked General Marshall out of resigning
because this issue did not merit resignation, remained friendly with
Clifford, who writes:

Lovett remained adamant for the rest of his life, however, in his
view that the president and I had been wrong. So did most of his
colleagues. Nothing could ever convince him, Marshall, Acheson,
Forrestal, or Rusk that President Truman had made the right decision
... Because President Truman was often annoyed by the tone and
fierceness of the pressure exerted on him by American Zionists, he
left some people with the impression that he was ambivalent about the
events of May 1948. This was not true. He never wavered in his belief
that he had taken the right action.



-- 
ELT in Japan
http://www.eltinjapan.com/

Japan Higher Education Outlook
http://japanheo.blogspot.com/

We are Feral Cats
http://wearechikineko.blogspot.com/

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] ??Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to exist??

2010-09-28 Thread CeJ
What this seems to mean is: recognition is recognition, for the US
president to give. The terms 'de facto' and 'de jure' only apply to
the nature of the government being recognized. So, a provisional
government of Israel was recognized by Truman as 'de facto'. When it
held elections, he recognized it 'de jure'.

CJ

http://www.americanforeignrelations.com/O-W/Recognition-Belligerent-recognition.html

If the character of a civil war will be admitted to the Arab-Jewish
conflict in Palestine, that will serve as a fine example. The British
shifted responsibility for their League of Nations mandate over
Palestine on 3 December 1947, effective 15 May 1948, to the United
Nations, which late in 1947 adopted a partition plan vehemently
opposed by the Arabs but upheld by President Harry S. Truman. At
midnight local time, 14 May 1948, the provisional government of Israel
proclaimed the existence of the Republic of Israel that it had carved
out of Palestine. Overriding objections from the Department of State,
disregarding the wishes of Britain, France, and the Soviet Union,
overlooking the nonrecognition of Israel by strategically located and
oil-rich Arab states, the general fighting between Arabs and Jews
throughout Palestine, and stating that he did so in keeping with the
principle of self-determination and for humanitarian reasons, Truman
extended de facto recognition when Israel was but eleven minutes old.
Perhaps his need to win the Jewish vote in the fall elections
stimulated his prompt action. After Israel held its first elections,
on 25 January 1949, Truman extended it de jure recognition six days
later. War between Israel and its Arab neighbors has been intermittent
since the Republic of Israel first saw light. At the beginning of the
twenty-first century the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was
demanding a Palestine state with the capital in Jerusalem and
sovereignty over shrines sacred to both Jews and Muslims—which Israel
would not let him have.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] ??Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to exist??

2010-09-28 Thread CeJ
It still comes down to whether or not 'de jure' status is something
that can be given or only acknowledged.

http://talknic.wordpress.com/2010/01/02/the-recognition-of-israel-de-jure-de-facto-the-jewish-state/

 //Letter From the Agent of the Provisional Government of Israel… ” I
have the honor to notify you that the state of Israel has been
proclaimed as an independent republic within frontiers approved by the
General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November
29, 1947, and that a provisional government has been charged to assume
the rights and duties of government for preserving law and order
within the boundaries of Israel, for defending the state against
external aggression, and for discharging the obligations of Israel to
the other nations of the world in accordance with international law.
The Act of Independence will become effective at one minute after six
o’clock on the evening of 14 May 1948, Washington time.//

Based on this information, the majority of the International Community
of States recognized Israel, over riding the Arab League’s objections.
(International democracy at work)

Recognition – de facto or de jure?: (de facto – facts on the ground) –
(de jure – in law).
The territories of the Sovereign State of Israel were recognized de
jure by default, through the de facto recognition given to the A)
Provisional Government over those territories declared. B) through the
de jure recognition given to the authority of the Provisional
Government over those territories declared C) through the de jure
recognition of the Government of Israel set up under the authority of
the Provisional Government.

Link to this section
Three examples of this recognition :
The US granted the Provisional Government de facto recognition to
administer the Sovereign Territories of the State of Israel, based on
the information supplied by the Agent of the Provisional Government of
Israel, (by the boundaries in UNGA res 181), until such time as a
permanent institutions of Government were set up. It then granted de
jure recognition. This was marked when the first political party was
elected to Government.

The USSR granted de jure recognition of the de facto (provisional)
Government’s authority to administer the Sovereign Territories of the
State of Israel and to set up a Government. To the best of my
knowledge, the USSR has never actually given de jure recognition.
Although having given de jure recognition to the ‘authority’ of the
Provisional Government, it would naturally follow by default.

Link to this section
The British waited until a political party was elected to the
Government. The British then granted de jure recognition, with
conditions. The territories Israel had acquired by war, outside of
it’s declared Sovereign Boundaries, were considered to be ‘occupied’.
I.e., NOT Israeli Sovereign territory.

His Majesty’s Government have also decided to accord de jure
recognition to the State of Israel, subject to explanations on two
points corresponding to those described above in regard to the case of
Jordan. These points are as follows. First, that His Majesty’s
Government are unable to recognise the sovereignty of Israel over that
part of Jerusalem which she occupies, though, pending a final
determination of the status of the area, they recognise that Israel
exercises de facto authority in it. Secondly, that His Majesty’s
Government cannot regard the present boundaries between Israel, and
Egypt, Jordan, Syria and the Lebanon as constituting the definitive
frontiers of Israel, as these boundaries were laid 1139 down in the
Armistice Agreements concluded severally between Israel and each of
these States, and are subject to any modifications which may be agreed
upon under the terms of those Agreements, or of any final settlements
which may replace them.

Israel has never legally annexed any territory. Unilateral annexation
is not legal. It must be under a treaty or agreement. “territories
occupied” and never withdrawn from or legally annexed, are still
‘occupied’.

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/israel/palestin.htm

April 20, 1946: The Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry submits its
report, which recommends that Britain immediately authorize the
admission of 100,000 Jews into Palestine.

May 8, 1946: President Truman writes to Prime Minister Attlee, citing
the report of the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry, and expressing
the hope that Britain would begin lifting the barriers to Jewish
immigration to Palestine.

June 21, 1946: A Joint Chiefs of Staff memorandum to the
State-War-Navy Coordinating Committee warns that if the United States
uses armed force to support the implementation of the recommendations
of the report of the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry, the Soviet
Union might be able to increase its power and influence in the Middle
East, and United States access to Middle East oil could be
jeopardized.

September 24, 1946: Counsel to the President Clark Clifford writes to
the 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Communist Parties have always supported Israel's right to exist

2010-09-28 Thread CeJ
 Well, I wouldn't have said it if I didn't think it was true. Certainly
 , the CPUSA supported a two state solution, with one of the states
 being Israel; and therefore Israel would exist, and have a right to
 exist.

 Gus Hall



Geez, I didn't think Gus was into such Stalinist bullshit until the
1960s. However, CB, you said PARTIES, and I have to wonder if it is
worth researching just where that particular CP was on the issue in
1945-1949, and I'm not really sure it is worth the time and trouble.
Also, it is one thing to say you support a two-state solution, another
to say you support a two-state solution under the UN plan(s), another
to say you support Israel (rogue state). From the very start, the
proposed division of Palestine into two states was grossly unfair to
the Palestinians and overtly favorable to the land-grabbing European
Zionists.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Tightening the Noose on Credit

2010-09-28 Thread CeJ
Two years after the 2008 bailout, the economy continues to struggle with a
lack of credit, the hallmark of recessions and depressions. Credit (or
debt) is issued by banks and is the source of virtually all money today.
When credit is not available, there is insufficient money to buy goods or
pay salaries, so workers get laid off and businesses shut down, in a
vicious spiral of debt and depression.

This is too simplistic of an explanation. I've seen it here for 20
years in Japan,
which went to the new banking standards earlier than the US did. Doing so caused
the fake bankruptcy of some rather large banks and some smaller ones,
but this was mostly a sop to US-based private equity interests, who wanted
a way into Japan's banking system (which would
give them lots of credit to put into the US bubbles).

At a local level, loans are available and at very low interest
rates--at least so it seems.
But individuals and small businesses don't want the loans or can't
qualify to get the
loans. Meanwhile, everyone and thing with money to put somewhere ends up either
directly or indirectly buying and holding government bonds or cash
savings (with the
idea that at least these things don't lose money).

Loans are the source of profits for banks that take savings, but in
the bubble years
even small banks and savings and loans -- and credit unions -- ended
up bypassing
much of the local loan markets and going to the financial bubbles to try and get
better returns.

So banking institutions weren't interested in local housing or student
loan markets,
but other financial entities created housing, student loan and
personal credit bubbles
and fed them back to the banking system as portfolios of 'securities'
and 'insurance'.
They did the same thing back in the 80s using different instruments of financial
bubble-ization and mass destruction, with similar results only on a
somewhat smaller
scale.

Basically what the US financial markets have said to the American people is:
you don't qualify for credit to buy a house or a university education
unless we can
make huge profits from 'securitizing' such debt. So all that money
will sit in stocks,
bonds, and cash--with some hedge fund investing--until the next bubble
is created.

Unless the whole system crashes. The only bubble that is immune from
another crash
for the next 3-5 years is the health insurance, health care and
medicine pricing bubble(s)
in the US. And that , as it turns out, is what Obama had Clinton out
trying to sell to the
American public during the recent round of interviews and appearances
(since the plan
basically uses federal money to keep growing the health care business
in the US while
not helping uninsured and under-insured working people). And we all
know Clinton is a
good salesman.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Bill Clinton goes out stumping for Obama

2010-09-24 Thread CeJ
Race might be a social category but I would refrain from using metaphysically.

I think you are missing the obvious--these tempest in a teapot
teabaggers are doing a great service to the Demoncrats.

I wasn't out to critique race in America. I was out to critique the
warpig Obama.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Fidel Castro Blasts Ahmadinejad As Anti-Semitic

2010-09-24 Thread CeJ
Castro was the one who put out the big alarm about the US sending
ships to  harass Iran.  He is not some heavy critic of Iran and is a
long term critic  of Israel, which is why his very specific and narrow
criticism of A is significant. A probably sees it as advice from an
ancestor who is not yet a pile of ashes.

The problem is no one listens to Castro much anymore--well, Atlantic
bloggers do.

I'm not really sure he knows what A.'s views are.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Fidel Castro Blasts Ahmadinejad As Anti-Semitic

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
More and more Fidel looks to be irrelevant on this particular issue.
Perhaps he could relate better with the PLO under Arafat.

Of course I would have to wade into the transcript of a long speech
(translated of course) in order to see if he addresses Palestine or
the fact that it's the US in Iraq and Afghanistan, and not Iran.

A's repeated point has been to say that one can not use the Holocaust
as an excuse for al Nakba or European Zionist Jews colonizing
Palestine. And al Nakba denial is worse because the calamity is still
unfolding. Israeli leadership treats for peace with the near-powerless
PA while trying to consolidate greater Israel.

For example:

 
http://noticeable.wordpress.com/2009/04/22/president-mahmoud-ahmadinejad-full-text-speech-durban-review-conference-20-april-2009/

excerpt:

After the Second World War, by exploiting the holocaust and under the
pretext of protecting the Jews they made a nation homeless with
military expeditions and invasion. They transferred various groups of
people from America, Europe and other countries to this land. They
established a completely racist government in the occupied Palestinian
territories. And in fact, under the pretext of making up for damages
resulting from racism in Europe, they established the most aggressive,
racist country in another territory, i.e. Palestine. The Security
Council endorsed this usurper regime and for 60 years constantly
defended it and let it commit any kind of crime. Worse than this is
that some Western governments and America are committed to support
genocidal racists while others condemn the bombardment of innocent
human beings, the occupation of their land and the disasters that took
place in Gaza. Even before they kept silent, not responding to all the
crimes of that regime, and supported it. Dear friends, ladies and
gentlemen, what has been the source of recent wars such as the
Americans’ attack on Iraq or the wide military expedition in
Afghanistan? Has it been anything else than the selfishness of the
American government of the time and the pressures by those in
possession of wealth and power to expand influence and hegemony,
support weapon manufacturers, destroy a great culture that is
thousands of years old, destroying possible and potentials risks by
the countries of the region against the occupying Quds regime, and
looting the energy resources of the Iraqi people? In fact why were one
million people dead and injured and a few million people forced to
leave their homeland? Why were hundreds of billions of dollars worth
of damage inflicted on the Iraqi people and hundreds of billions of
dollars of costs for the military invasion imposed on the American
people and America’s allies? Was attacking Iraq not orchestrated by
the Zionists and their allies in the previous ruling government of
America which was on the one hand in power and on the other the owner
of arms manufacturing companies?

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Teabaggers: A Demoncratic Plot?

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
Right now they seem to be the best way to mess up the Repugnican
Party-- a sort of reverse George Will strategy, if you will (I think
it was he who first put out the idea of a permanent, united Republican
majority in power). I always said the Repugs were more fractious and
class-divided than the Democrats. The warpig administration of
Obama-Emanuel couldn't give a toss about the 10% of the US populace
that is anti-war and hates both parties. If they vote at all, it will
be during presidential elections for the least bad warpig. But look
how useful the teabaggers are: they will keep black and Hispanic
(non-Cuban) voters voting 100% plus for Obama and his warpig
Demoncrats. And if the teabaggers split the Repugs (while attracting
racist, xenophobic independents still searching for their lost Ross
Perot), it will help keep a reasonably unpopular Obama in office for a
second term. Therefore, I wouldn't be surprised if one of the biggest
supporters of the teabaggers in key races is Rahmbo E and his bagmen.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Fidel Castro Blasts Ahmadinejad As Anti-Semitic

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
Maybe he simply needs to shut up and stop giving interviews to
Atlantic bloggers?
They are the very sort who have accused Castro of being anti-semitic too.

I don't think we need to review Castro's credentials. But he is at the
end of his life, and not really in power anymore. He can't really do
much of anything.

I'm not really sure this Atlantic piece is nothing more than a bunch
of lies concocted by the Atlantic zionist, since it uses so little
actual quoted material.

  
http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2010/09/fidel-to-ahmadinejad-stop-slandering-the-jews/62566/

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Teabaggers: A Demoncratic Plot?

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
Like Obama has done anything that would make Black people stop voting
for him. What planet are you on ?

I don't know, dye his hair green? The point is to keep black voters
voting in large numbers for a warpig demoncratic government that
doesn't give a shit about them. Or haven't you noticed? What planet
are you from? It isn't like they would vote mainstream Repugnican,
they simply wouldn't vote.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Fidel Castro Blasts Ahmadinejad As Anti-Semitic

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
CB: Yeah right. Sort of like Deng Chou Ping. I bet he has no influence
whatsoever over the Cuban society and state.  He's a retired strongman
(smile)

I didn't know Fidel is a pile of ashes talking to your ancestors Charles.

I do know when I go into my favorite Egyptian cafe in Kuala Lumpur
(Arab ex-pat community is big there), they all talk about A. and Ch.
but if you say Castro, they say, 'Who?' Another big difference is that
these guys are plurastically leading large populated countries, while
Castro was always at best, without the third world movement
pretensions, the leader of a micro-state.

I think I had a good point that the world Castro could relate to was
Arafat and the PLO. Don't get me wrong, Arafat was one of my heroes,
as is Castro.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Teabaggers: A Demoncratic Plot?

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
CB: The vast majority of Black people never vote. Those who do vote
understand exactly what Obama is going through. All of these Black
people ,including me, are very observant earthly beings, know white
people like the back of our hands. Oh you know them better than us ?
uhhhuuuhu

And back to my original point: the last presidential election, they
did. As did some of that 10% of America who hate the imperium (black,
white, whatever). And so black people understand Obama's need to give
carte blanche to the warpigs and manage a health care plan that
reflates the heathcare bubble while making 80 million Americans have
no health care.

The rest of your statement is just racialist metaphysics. But my
African genes cry out so to communicate with you better. Someday we
might break you of such sloppy thinking habits CB.

CB

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Bill Clinton goes out stumping for Obama

2010-09-23 Thread CeJ
Well the first black president goes stumping for the second black
president. Bill does have better moves on the dance floor than the
cool thin yellow one, though.

Clinton simply backed his wife to the bitter end of the Democratic
primaries, and neither of them could believe that a relatively obscure
mixed race dude hiding out in Chicago could beat their NY state
strategy to get to the White House. Hilary should have gone back to
her Illinois roots.

Clinton is out to help shore up the waning support for the beleaugered
one in upper working class, lower middle class Demoncratia (it's the
tanking economy dude).  The fact that his visage in the media will
make the teabag types go ballistic can only help.

I just wish he would get with Tony Blair and keep the ME peace process going!
That and, with Bill Gates, solve world poverty.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Ahmadinejad to World: Capitalism, US's New World Order is DONE

2010-09-21 Thread CeJ
Apparently the ziowarpiggies and their NATO cronies couldn't get out
of bed early enough in order to walk out this time. Meanwhile, NATO
cronie Merkel teaches developing world 'responsibility and
accountability'. Can't wait for Hugo Chavez to weigh in.


http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100921/ap_on_re_us/un_un_world_summit;_ylt=AtEztBwzQfEFE2kA34FQJ2JvaA8F;_ylu=X3oDMTJqZm45dW5uBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMTAwOTIxL3VuX3VuX3dvcmxkX3N1bW1pdARjcG9zAzEEcG9zAzIEc2VjA3luX3RvcF9zdG9yeQRzbGsDaXJhbnNhaG1hZGlu

To spotlight the importance of this effort and the need for all countries to 
participate, Ahmadinejad proposed that the United Nations name the coming 10 
years the decade for the joint global governance.

In his brief speech, intertwining philosophy and religion with the
current state of the world, Ahmadinejad declared: The undemocratic
and unjust governance structures of the decision-making bodies in
international economic and political fields are the reasons behind
most of the plights today humanity is confronting.

It is my firm belief that in the new millennium, we need to revert to
the divine mindset ... based on the justice-seeking nature of mankind,
and on the monotheistic world view..., the Iranian leader said. Now
that the discriminatory order of capitalism and the hegemonic
approaches are facing defeat and are getting close to their end,
all-out participation in upholding justice and prosperous
interrelations is essential.

While Ahmadinejad blamed the world's problems on powerful capitalist
nations, German Chancellor Angela Merkel laid much of the blame on
developing nations.

It is in their hands whether aid can be effective, she said.
Therefore, support to good governance is as important as aid
itself.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Final U.S. combat brigade departs Iraq

2010-08-21 Thread CeJ
This is just more propaganda. It's obvious the US military has been
moving piecemeal out of Iraq and into Kuwait and onto compounds there
for quite some time. It's funny because they went into Iraq at a
division level, and now they make a big propaganda deal out of leaving
at a brigade level. That is what occupying Iraq did to the US
military--it destroyed division-level organization of combat arms,
among other things. The Bradleys and M1 tanks are mostly junk and
proved unusable in either Iraq or Afghanistan, as predicted by many
when the things were first deployed.

The US has plenty of combat troops in Iraq, but as they have for the
past 6 years, they don't operate at a division or brigade level.

As for the 50,000 on the base and embassy complexes, that is augmented
by plenty of hired help, and the US military is waiting for
'developments' that will require them to stay--in good faith to the
budding democracy of Iraq, etc.

There is no way that they are planning on leaving and abandoning those
bases in a year. Shit that was about the only thing they accomplished
the whole time they were there; they got a multi-billion dollar base
complex in the ME built for a couple trillion dollars.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] US to Attend Hiroshima Memorial for First Time

2010-08-07 Thread CeJ
Also, I should have said: it has been the official policy of the US
government and military neither to confirm nor deny the presence of
nukes (tactital nukes usually) on US ships or planes or overseas
bases. When New Zealand tried to get them to stop taking nukes into NZ
ports, the US actually set up sanctions that damaged the NZ economy.
However, I was thinking that during the height of the Cold War, with
Japan leaning towards the socialists and communists, they would have
thought of something different. Besides, in the 1940s and 50s, I don't
think it was so commonplace to take tactical nukes everywhere. I think
this came about mostly during the Vietnam War and then intensified
after, during the Reagan years. I could be wrong about that. Perhaps
the US army stockpiled nuclear artillery (nuke rounds, nuke-tipped
little john missiles, etc) for possible use in Korea. I have to
research this more.

If the people in Japan and S. Korea had known so many nukes were
coming and going with the US military, they might have thought
differently of the alliances set up by the US.

To hear some Japan officials talk about all this after the Cold War,
some claim they were assured the US had no nukes in Japan. Others say
they knew the US had nukes and it was acknowledged. Perhaps it's a mix
of both. I remember Time magazine reporting (int'l edition) in the
late 80s and 90s how the Japanese were sensitive about US carriers
putting into Yokohama because the ships are nuclear powered, but that
never made sense at all because Japan has nuclear power plants all
over the place--like dozens up and down the Japan Sea cost between
here (Fukui) and southern Honshu.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] 34 billionaires pledge half of their fortunes

2010-08-06 Thread CeJ
Hope , faith and charity. The greatest of these is charity.

More like PR, tax shelters and untaxed investment/finance capitalism,
and the greatest of all these Bill and Melinda know more about than
100 Michael Hudsons.

CJ
---
ELT in Japan
http://www.eltinjapan.com/

Japan Higher Education Outlook
http://japanheo.blogspot.com/

We are Feral Cats
http://wearechikineko.blogspot.com/

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] US to Attend Hiroshima Memorial for First Time

2010-08-05 Thread CeJ
CB:  What would the US have done if Japan had not allowed same ?

Most likely the US would have said it valued the US-Japan alliance more than
an issue like that, and then lie and say it didn't have any nukes in Japan
while bringing them here anyway.

At least more Japanese would be aware that the US military was and still is
armed with thousands of nukes, which they deploy all over the world.

BTW, officailly the Japanese government didn't allow anything. They don't
have the constitutional right to allow nuclear weapons in the country. Wait,
you mean the leadership of Japan, US puppets that they are, are also a bunch
of lying, unconstitutional criminals?

CJ
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] 34 billionaires pledge half of their fortunes

2010-08-05 Thread CeJ
The most interesting thing about this is people fall for the line that
they are 'giving it away'. Not the case at all. What they seem to seek
is some way to keep their fortunes intact after their death and still
have some say over how the money is invested and used, even as they
lie mouldering in the cold cold ground.

Pity the poor Bill and Melinda Gates foundation. They lost 150 million
dollars because they owned too much BP stock!

If I were worth a billion dollar now, greedy person that I am, I would
keep 10 million and retire and give the rest to people who could
actually use it and whether I was alive or dead I wouldn't try to
assert say over how they use it. NOW THAT WOULD BE CHARITY.

F- Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and T. Boone Pickens and their crappy
charitable foundations.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] 34 billionaires pledge half of their fortunes

2010-08-05 Thread CeJ
http://hubpages.com/hub/How-to-Protect-Your-Assets-With-a-Foundation-Just-Like-Billionaires-Gates-Buffet

Starting Your Own Charitable Foundation

Donating to a foundation is one legal way to protect wealth for
descendants. Assets transferred into a foundation are immune to
capital gains taxes, plus the donator still gets a tax deduction for
the contribution. Additionally, the charity receives more money than
if the donator sold assets, paid the taxes, and donated the remainder.


This may come as a surprise to some—that anyone, not just the super
rich like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet--can set up a trust and/or
foundation very inexpensively by doing all the research and drafting
their own documents. There are many sources that provide templates. If
your situation is straightforward, all you have to do is fill in the
blanks. For those with more involved situations an experienced
attorney is recommended. Even if you do it yourself, it’s not a bad
idea to have an attorney review it. The final step is transferring
your assets into the foundation or trust, otherwise all your hard work
is for naught.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] US to Attend Hiroshima Memorial for First Time

2010-08-04 Thread CeJ

 Japan, the only country that has ever been attacked with
 atomic bombs -- first on August 6, 1945 in Hiroshima, and
 three days later in Nagasaki -- has pushed for the abolition
 of the weapons of mass destruction ever since.



Which is why the governments of Japan have knowingly allowed/acquiesced to
the US storing, transhipping and deploying nukes in Japan, right? Which is
why their government never protests the US deploying nukes on the Korean
peninsula, right?

CJ
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Kiss This War Goodbye

2010-08-04 Thread CeJ
It's hard to say exactly why this crap was released when it was released,
but it seems to amount to the same sort of bait and switch we got with the
so-called 'Abu Graib' 'revelations'--let's entertain people with SM porn to
distract them from our real war atrocities.

It could be that some in the 'security' community realize there is no
strategic importance to Afghanistan because it is a landlocked country.
Certainly deploying 100,000 light infantry with marine airwings isn't going
to 'pacify' it. So no doubt some within the national security state are
pushing for, at most, an airbase and proxy wars through Kabul and Pakistan
puppets, especially if India agrees to it.

Meanwhile, they seem to be digging in to rationalize keeping the
base-embassy complex in Iraq and 50,000 'trainers' there. Also, the Bushwar
Obamaites warpig Demoncrats (along with their Repugnican coalition partners)
have to figure out how to keep NATO from falling apart while at the same
time financing 1.5 trillion dollars a year on 'national security'.
Afghanistan is now clearly not the mission to give NATO a new reason for
being.

Good luck to them, may they rot in the hell that is the world they create
everyday.

CJ
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Labor aristocracy

2010-07-27 Thread CeJ
In an interview with director of 'Fast Food Nation' (a fictionalized version
of the book with the same name), we probably get closer to the 'truth' about
labor and the impoverished in the US. Perhaps, btw, I'll have to give the PK
Dick novel, A Scanner Darkly another try (and has anyone seen the rotoscoped
animated version by this same director?):

excerpt of interview only

http://motherjones.com/media/2006/10/grazed-and-abused?page=4

MJ: The characters are so disparate—separated by circumstance and class and
race and geography. You have the sense that if they could get together in
some way, if they could join forces, then they could reach a solution. It
feels like the film is as much about the effects of isolationism as it is
about anything else.

RL: Yeah. It’s a depiction of a divided and conquered kind of world, with
people who don’t communicate or cross paths much. Everyone is in their own
somewhat comfortable bubble—even the undocumented workers sort of find their
own niche, they’re separated at the plant, their apartment complex is
probably 95 percent poverty, undocumented workers.

MJ: There’s so many causes of isolationism in America. But how do you
measure it? Your two films this year are so sad. I mean that as the highest
compliment.

RL: Thanks, yeah. It’s a real question. I mean, A Scanner Darkly is the
sadness of the alienated individual within the larger culture that’s kind of
clamping down and Fast Food Nation is more of the systemic sadness—the idea
that we’re all cogs in a machine that’s so much bigger than all of us, that
one person can really have no effect whatsoever. The Kinnear character comes
to that realization: I can do this or that, but so what? They’ll just get
rid of me and find someone else. The system seems big and insurmountable,
especially when coupled with the level of comfort that so many Americans
enjoy. Even some of our poorest people, those without insurance, still have
iPods and cable TV. There’s a high level of consumer goods around; people
are kept from feeling desperately poor even if they are.

MJ: I love that line in Fast Food Nation about how the cows don’t leave the
fence because they like their genetically engineered food so much better
than real grass. That’s why we stay: We’re placated.

RL: It tastes better, yeah. Things are kind of okay.

MJ: Stepping through this logically and philosophically, then, does that say
to you that things have to get worse for people in order for things to get
better? That hope lies in some kind of catastrophe?

RL: I thought that for so long, but then it does get worse. Abu Ghraib. This
ridiculous, horrific war in Iraq. Katrina. I mean, short of something
happening directly on our shores, where tens of thousands of Americans were
dying every week or something, I don’t know what it would take. Things have
gotten worse and they haven’t gotten better yet. I don’t know what the next
move is. Part of me is optimistic that people, whether they like it or not,
are being kind of awakened. They realize that the world the United States is
occupying is not the same world that we were in even 10 years ago.
Everything is different. Maybe there’s more of a discontent and cynicism
toward our current administration, but I don’t know. What would be an
example of it getting worse? An economic collapse of some kind, maybe, a
situation where everyone is scrambling, that would be worse. But then what?
That would just mean that we’d switch regimes. All you can do is just vote
in someone new. If “It’s the Economy, Stupid,” then you’re just switching
business partners. It’s hard to imagine any true alternatives. I mean, the
hope for so many people is the emergence of a really viable third party, one
that represents 90 percent of the population and the issues that those
people care about: healthcare, retirement, education, pensions. There’s so
many things that we could all agree on outside of divisive issues. You’d
think that if some force arose that was really speaking to those issues,
then it could happen. But I don’t know what it’ll take. Things seem primed
right now in some ways; if some charismatic person stepped up, someone who
was against this current war and was in favor of things that people care
about. But I don’t know if the Democrats can deliver even a hint of that.

MJ: One more line from the film that I love: It’s when the kid says, “The
most patriotic thing I can think of doing right now is to defy the Patriot
Act.”

RL: It got a round of applause in Cannes! But you know, when we screened the
film down in Orange County, it kind of got a chill. [Laughs.]

MJ: That’s a backhanded compliment.

RL: Well, it’s funny because the line isn’t necessarily the movie
talking—it’s just something that a hyped-up college kid would say.

MJ: Do you hope the film will change people’s eating habits? Did it change
yours?

RL: My eating habits were already set. You think you know about fast food—I
mean, I knew it wasn’t, like, one cow, one hamburger—but 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] why are white southerners so violent?

2010-07-18 Thread CeJ
Not to worry. I think that, brave soul that he is, CB is trying to discuss
something on the LBO-Talk list.

I'll hold my breath, dip into the archives, and check out how it went.

CJ
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] why are white southerners so violent?

2010-07-18 Thread CeJ
Yes, it's obviously a spillover from the LBO Talk list.

See, if you have the stomach for it,

http://mailman.lbo-talk.org/pipermail/lbo-talk/Week-of-Mon-20100712/date.html

It seems to be one of the more popular threads going there for the past
week.



CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Calhoun

2010-07-17 Thread CeJ
I remember having to read a lot of Calhoun and a lot of Clay in US history
courses (Jackson Era).

Not sure if Calhoun was related to the Gibson super-family, but



http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/secret/famous/gibsonfamily.html

Gibson

This page updated January 2004. The news that Senator Strom Thurmond had a
mixed race daughter who had remained a secret to the outside world for
several decades was not news for genealogists and historians. They've long
known about the many great families of the South with mixed race histories.
Arguably, the most notable among these is the great political Ur family of
the South, the Gibsons. Why the early and rich history of this family has
been so ignored would be amusing, if it were not such a clear cut example of
how certain subjects can be too politically incorrect to handle.

Gideon Gibson's family first appeared in the records when they applied for
land in the Santee River area in South Carolina around 1730. Although some
objected to their being free colored men with their white wives, in the
end they were given permission by Governor Robert Johnson.

Soon after, they became part of a sociological phenomenon which the few
scholars who have looked at it have still not satisfactorily explained.
Probably due to the difficulty of working land without recourse to labour
(whether from slavery or indentured servitude) there occured in early South
Carolina beginning sometime in the late 1740s and ending just prior to the
Revolution, a rather surprising number of fairly substantial land holders
who sold their properties and for lack of a better description, simply went
'bush.'

Living together in the woods in loose communities, they refused to work and
existed by poaching, theft and as they grew more desperate, highway robbery
and raids on the homes and farms of their law abiding, hard working
neighbours. Besides the women they abducted who became just as criminally
proficient, their ranks swelled with a great many Indians and runaway
slaves.

In the end, these 'banditi' were brought to heel by the Gibsons and other
farming families. Located too far from the centres of British colonial
administration, they took the law into their own hands and eventually caused
greater concern to the British government than the troublesome element they
had initially gone up against. For these morally upstanding and highly
industrious pioneers with the Gideon Gibson as their leader, go down in
history as the country's first vigilantes - or'regulators' as they were
known then. It was their initiative that instigated those movements which, a
few decades later, would erupt into the most violent of that kind of action
- lynching.

It should be pointed out here, however, that the most aggressive force
employed by this group was a good whipping which at that time in history was
the standard legal punishment for the behaviour they were attempting to
curtail. Incidentally, and I cannot help but find some amusement in the
fact, this is what they also meted out to the British soldiers who were sent
out to quell them.

In what was then the only monograph written on these events, Richard Maxwell
Brown's South Carolina Regulators, the author was aware of the colour of
these ambitious and successful farmers such as the Gibsons, but he made no
mention of it in his work. Obviously, he was not about to take
responsibility for pointing out that the most terrifying sociological
reaction to the black community in the early 1900s had been initiated by
people of colour a century and a half earlier.

Southern Families Other academics have skirted this history for another
reason it seems. This group of mixed race plantation owners who finally
subdued the 'bush' outlaws and whose descendants by the time of the Civil
War had become some of the wealthiest and most politically influential
figures of Georgia, the Carolinas, Kentucky and Tenesee - were of the same
ethnic stock. The matrimonial alliances of one branch of the Gibson clan,
for example, were contracted almost exclusively with congressional,
senatorial and gubernatorial families of these southern states. Senator
Gibson of Louisiana and the founder of Tulane University was a scion of this
family.

A subsequent observation Maxwell Brown made caused me almost as much
excitement as my discovery of this deep dark secret surrounding the African
strain in the genealogy of our Southern aristocracy. For in this episode of
Southern history can be heard some of the earliest drumbeats of the oncoming
American Revolution. As a part of the campaign the Gibsons mounted demanding
the government restore law and order, they further alienated the British
colonial office by witholding their taxes. Hardly a dozen years or so
earlier than the Revolution, it was they who started the famous chant, no
taxation without representation, which would gather momentum through the
rest of the states and finally culminate in this country's great War of
Independence.

It is 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Scope and Limits of Theory

2010-07-12 Thread CeJ
For what it is worth, here is a credible metatheoretical statement of
Chavismo.
I think it errs in attributing too much to one person--not Chavez but JKG.
Also, it's almost as if we were talking about some line of 'literary
influence'
instead of a real political and economic 'theory-in-action'.

However, it it much less distorted than the pieces of journalism we are
going to
get through US or UK media, which are determined to portray Chavez
only seriously enough in order to have 'serious' people dismiss him.
They have hugely succeeded at that with Ahmadinejad. Now it might
sound silly to say there is a theory called Chavismo, but as a 'theory
in action' it is something to be given considerable weight in a discussion
of theory.


http://www.ncsu.edu/project/acontracorriente/spring_07/Grandin.pdf

excerpt:

The key to understanding Chavismo can be found in the
writings of an author Chavez mentioned during his last visit to New
York. Not Noam Chomsky, but John Kenneth Galbraith, whose 1952
American Capitalism: The Concept of Countervailing Power argued
that the success of the US economy was largely due to the New Deal’s
extension of labor rights, which balanced the power of monopoly
capitalism to set wages and prices. A similar vision of development
held great sway in Latin America in the years after WWII, as a wide
array of reformers believed that the best way to weaken the oligarchy
and stimulate domestic manufacturing was to empower society’s
most marginal. In many ways, Chavismo represents a fusion of this
older, state-directed vision of development and wealth redistribution
with a “bottom-up” civil society model of social change that has been
evolving throughout Latin America over the last two decades.
Ultimately, what is happening in Venezuela is being judged
through the prism of competing lessons drawn from the Cold War.
Some look at the history, see the enormity of US power, along with
the viciousness of domestic elites who have fought even the mildest
efforts at reform, and conclude that any fulfillment of democracy’s
promise will entail conflict and polarization. Others draw a different
conclusion, that the intractability of power demands the hollowing
out of the concept of democracy to its institutional carapace, emptied
of its egalitarian and populist impulse. “Political democracy,” as
Samuel Huntington put it in a book that sought to advise Latin
America’s post-Cold War transition, “is clearly compatible with
inequality in both wealth and income, and in some measure, it may
be dependent upon such inequality.”5
But it is too much to ask Venezuela to bear the weight of this
history. It should be judged on its own merits. Chavismo has its
shortcomings, but its achievements have been impressive.
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[Marxism-Thaxis] Scope and Limits of Theory

2010-07-10 Thread CeJ
CCAnother way of putting this, is that they assumed there to be a direct
relationship between theory and praactice: abstract theory could dictate
detailed tactics in all situatios. (Assuming a direct relation of theory
to practice is, I think, the most useful definition of dogmatism.)

That is probably true in the more rigorous physical sciences. It is true
for _some_ cooking_: There are many items for which you can go to the
cookbook (theory) and followiing it directly will come out with the same
results everytime. But this is not true, for example, in kneading bread:
there is no way theory (a manual) can dictate to you this process, since
it has to be known in the fingers, so to speak, rather than merely in
the brain. The ability to judge the relevance or irrelevance of theory
(recipes) in various contects is as vital in politics as in cooking!

It seems to me that the limit of 'abstract' theory is centered on this reality:
that a theory is a representation, and a representation can never be
the thing or process or action or set of actions it represents.
Even when it is, like so many 'theories' we might discuss here, a
representation of a
representation.

A different way of looking at this issue might be: there are the theories
we espouse, state in high-blown language, and use to excoriate others with
(this or that person is not a good Marxist, not a true revolutionary,
a Stalinist, a Trot, etc.). And there are the theories-in-action that
might be used to characterize and analyze the actions of a group
running a government,
possibly even a revolutionary one, or at least a political party with
a potential path to power. Again, this too would be an abstract representation.
However, we would hope that somehow our formulation of that theory-in-action
would capture what makes these actions 'coherent'and conceivable as
something coherent.
This might be a metatheory, and the actual theory-in-action might be
the ideology
of the group actually wielding power and engaging in politics with
access to power.

The US is caught up in the middle of any theorizing, but alas it isn't
because of a political process or societal transformation in any revolutionary
sense that I would agree with. Rather, we find theories-in-action worth
studying where there is RESISTANCE to the American center--that would be
places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Venezuela, Bolivia, Cuba, Iran,
Lebanon, and Gaza.

This is not to say that we are witnessing inevitably successful revolutions in
these places or amongst these groups.

And this is not to say theorizing these phenomena in a setting like this
is anything other than a communication on the margins. Rather, in our
marginal communications we might be able to gleem the potential for
revolution in such places and admidst such movements as Hezbollah,
Sadrists, Chavism, etc.

Nor is this to say that within the US itself there is no potential for
social and political revolution. I conjecture however that conditions and
activities of the present make it very unlikely anytime soon. I could be
completely wrong about that. I am just making that as an observation of
how I perceive and interpret conditions in the US right now.

CJ
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Thank You, Rand Paul (from a Historian)

2010-07-09 Thread CeJ
The thing to remember about libertarians is that for the most part they are
the Republicans who go to the nude beach.
It isn't like , ultimately, the Huffington Demoncrats offer anything better
for the mass of America. If anything, their incoherent brand of imperialist
warpig federalism is a harder sell because it comes across as elitist.

CJ


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[Marxism-Thaxis] Recessionary American capitalism returns to the basics--Hayek and Rand

2010-07-03 Thread CeJ
I still think a religious revival is next. If a hurricane gets the oil slick
and spews it all over the New South, that ought to be interesting.



http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/friedrich-hayek-darling-of-the-right-is-reborn-in-the-usa-2017267.html

excerpt:

Gurus of Economics

*When the financial crisis and the Great Recession presented challenges for
politics and for economics unlike anything seen since the 1930s, sending
people scurrying for the economic philosophers of more than half a century
ago, the first they reached for was John Maynard Keynes. An economist who
rose through the ranks of the British civil service, he was instrumental in
restoring the UK after the Great Depression, and in reshaping the global
financial order after the chaos of the Second World War. As well as
providing the academic underpinning for government efforts to stimulate
demand in the economy, he also had much to say about banking. Speculators
may do no harm as bubbles on a steady stream of enterprise. But the position
is serious when enterprise becomes the bubble on a whirlpool of
speculation.

On the same Fox programme in which Glenn Beck proselytised Hayek's tome, he
also waved a copy of 'Atlas Shrugged', the 1957 novel by Ayn Rand, the
Russian-American philosopher who is another darling of the libertarian
right. This book, too, has found its way back into the charts. In it, Rand
fantasises a strike by America's most productive capitalists and creative
scientists, driven away by government interventions that restrict their
businesses and redistribute their wealth, a strike that leads to the
collapse of society. Alan Greenspan, the deregulating chairman of the US
Federal Reserve, was a Rand devotee.
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[Marxism-Thaxis] US 'reconstruction' of Iraq collapses

2010-07-03 Thread CeJ
VP Biden seems to be in Iraq to try and prevent the collapse. The reason
American military people aren't dying in large numbers is that the military
is on its bases and not engaging in much combat against the Resistance--it
lets it proxies do that, or relies on air forces. But one does have to
wonder what the end game is here: is it permanent bases and 50,000 'support'
troops and trainers or complete withdrawal. This piece of propaganda says
that they will withdraw entirely by 2011, but what does that mean? Withdraw
to their bases, as they already have done? That is the only withdraw the DoD
is planning.



http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38079757/ns/world_news-the_new_york_times/

excerpt:

But some Iraqis have compared the current hurried reconstruction effort to
the haphazard American withdrawal from Vietnam in 1975. United States
officials acknowledge that the current effort to accelerate rebuilding
projects in Iraq is based on plans to reduce the American military forces in
the country to 50,000 by September from about 85,000 now, and to withdraw
entirely by the end of 2011. Many reconstruction projects continue to
require security provided by the American military.

In Diyala Province, northeast of Baghdad, after American officials told
local leaders that they intended to speed up projects because a nearby
United States Army base was scheduled to close this summer, Iraqi officials
said they found that construction standards had slipped so drastically that
they ordered an immediate halt to all American-financed projects, even
though American inspectors had deemed the work to be adequate.
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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Ghandi rejected Zionism

2010-06-28 Thread CeJ
JF:I suspect that Gandhi's position on that is by no means
not unrelated to his own advocacy of a secular India.
Although Gandhi was a very devout Hindu, he was
emphatic in support of India being a secular state
in which Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians etc.
would all have equal rights.  

The twist on a twist in the case of Israel is that they so repeatedly
declare that Israel is a SECULAR state.
And critics of Zionism point out it is mostly a secular political
philosophy and nationalism. I usually counter with observations like,

1. Most religious Jews have been won over to Israel as a Jewish state,
even if not the one of prophecy.

2. Zionism is self-contradictory in at least two senses: it was sold
as a form of socialism that excludes people based on their religion
and ethnicity (because it displaced upwards to 1 million Arab
Palestinians to be created) , it is supposed to be a secular political
philosophy that raises the idea and actions of the state to a national
religion.

3. When Truman rushed ahead of his own cabinet and advisors in order
to recognize Israel, he wasn't recognizing Israel, he was recognizing
an entity known as something like 'the Jewish state in Palestine'.

YC:although he did not understand at all what to be a chosen race
meant for the religious
jews - a terrible burden and a sacrifice 

I'm not really sure I follow your point here. The Christian traditions
we are most familiar with often emphasize the individual as chosen
while Islam has a stronger sense of chosen community (which Christian
radicals like Anabaptists also have). What makes Judaism different
doesn't have much at all to do with the Old Testament Judaism but
rather the late classical, early middle age development of Talmudic
Rabbinical Judaism, which tried to impose separation from its largest
schism, Christianity, by making conversion and inter-marriage so much
more difficult than either Christianity or Islam.

That is not to say that separation wasn't also a concern of the
Christians, but you can easily see how these attitudes could become
mutually re-inforcing. One could only be Jewish by 'blood', one would
have to choose willingly to be a Christian. Which is an overstatement
(conversion to Judaism was actually possible but very daunting by the
time Christianity was completely distinct). If its strictures weren't
so often violated, TRJ might have ended up like one of the other major
schisms, the depopulated Samaritans. Islam seems to have been
developed as a 'universal church' for the 'Abrahamic religions',
possibly including Zorastrians. Its strong conversionary and
assimilative powers were, contrary to popular modern western belief,
due to its doctrinal expansiveness and flexibility, but then held back
by the Arabic language and issues in the succession of power--that is
until dominant forms of political Islam hit up against European
Christianity, which, ironically enough, also harbored European
Talmudic Rabbinical Judaism, the very element that would conquer
Palestine in the name of a 'return to the promised land'.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Ghandi rejected Zionism

2010-06-27 Thread CeJ
http://www.twf.org/News/Y2001/0815-GandhiZionism.html

excerpt:

Gandhi rejected the idea of a Jewish State in the Promised Land by
pointing out that the Palestine of the Biblical conception is not a
geographical tract. The Zionists, after embarking upon a policy of
colonization of Palestine and after getting British recognition
through the Balfour Declaration of 1917 for the establishment in
Palestine of a national home for the Jews, tried to elicit maximum
international support. The Jewish leaders were keen to get an approval
for Zionism from Gandhi as his international fame as the leader of a
non-violent national struggle against imperialism would provide great
impetus for the Jewish cause. But his position was one of total
disapproval of the Zionist project both for political and religious
reasons. He was against the attempts of the British mandatory
Government in Palestine toeing the Zionist line of imposing itself on
the Palestinians in the name of establishing a Jewish national home.
Gandhi's Harijan editorial is an emphatic assertion of the rights of
the Arabs in Palestine. The following oft-quoted lines exemplify his
position: Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that
England belongs to the English or France to the French. It is wrong
and inhuman to impose the Jews on the Arabs... Surely it would be a
crime against humanity to reduce the proud Arabs so that Palestine can
be restored to the Jews partly or wholly as their national home.

Gandhi's response to Zionism and the Palestine question contains
different layers of meaning, ranging from an ethical position to
political realism. What is interesting is that Gandhi, who firmly
believed in the inseparability of religion and politics, had been
consistently and vehemently rejecting the cultural and religious
nationalism of the Zionists.

What follows then is that he was not for religion functioning as a
political ideology; rather, he wanted religion to provide an ethical
dimension to nation-State politics. Such a difference was vital as far
as Gandhi was concerned. A uni-religious justification for claiming a
nation-State, as in the case of Zionism, did not appeal to him in any
substantial sense.



A few months before his assassination, Gandhi answered the question
What is the solution to the Palestine problem? raised by Doon
Campbell of Reuters:

It has become a problem which seems almost insoluble. If I were a
Jew, I would tell them: 'Do not be so silly as to resort to
terrorism...' The Jews should meet the Arabs, make friends with them
and not depend on British aid or American aid, save what descends from
Jehovah.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] American Jews Who Reject Zionism

2010-06-26 Thread CeJ
I've been around and around on this topic on various discussion fora
online, and must say that there is an awful lot complicating any
discussion of Zionism that it almost always draws a lot of even
self-contradictory responses without any conclusions.

1. Israel is a state that was founded as something super-imposed over
Palestine, but also something super-imposed over other possible
solutions to what world leaders post-WW II considered the 'Jewish
question'.

2. The Yiddish-speaking cultures of European Jewry moved towards
nationalistic awareness but did not achieve a nation (unlike, for
example, Christian Slavs of various related but arguably distinct
ethnicities).

3. The US got in on it and imposed an American-centric, simplistic
'Americo-Zionist' view on what could have been instead a more peaceful
conclusion to a related but separate issue: what to do about
independence for the former Ottoman holdings that the British and
French had folded into their colonial systems between WWs I and II.
Thus, a conclusion for Palestine could have been parallel to
conclusions for Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Jordan, etc.

However, those final waves of Yiddish-speaking Jews would have to have
gone to the US, Canada and Australia. Instead they were forced into
being a part of still yet another European landgrab in the ME.

4. One possible contradiction about Zionism and the fate of Palestine
is simply that the very sort of Jews who helped lead a 'back to the
Holy Lands' movement from Europe in the 19th century are also of the
sort who might reject Israel as a Jewish state.

5. It's a sad aspect of so much of the American left side of the
political spectrum that its Jewish parts have tended to see Zionism as
progressive and liberational and have, over several generations, come
to be indoctrinated that questioning the status of the Zionist state
as unquestionable. This isn't to say that there aren't many
non-religious, secular, assimilated 'Jews' who oppose Israel, but I
often sense the position, if you explore it, comes down to:
Militaristic Zionism and the landgrab of 1945-1948 weren't evil, that
Zionism is reformable (a bit like talking with mixed race South
Africans who considered themselves white and apartheidists to the
end).

6. Also in the US, Israel has come to represent at least two complex things:

One, it is a symbol or focus for many Jews who feel they have lost
their ethnic identity (like so many Americans they probably have very
little idea of what that identity actually was--their Yiddish-Slavic
cultures, such as Sorbian, Polish and Russian Jewish have been lost).
Before Israel, about the only way they knew they were in some sense
'Jewish' was that they knew of at least one grandparent who practiced
some form of the religion, and certain relatives were victims of the
Holocaust.

Two,  a constant part of American national identity seems to be of
America as a chosen people engaged in the construction of a privileged
nation. Yes, many will argue that there are many other forms of
nationalism and these all tend to be exclusive. However, Americans
have latched onto the idea that the US is the New Zion. And so the
US's overwhelming support of Israel's militarism, belligerence,
colonialism is actually an extension of what the US has got away with
1945-now. Combine that with a sense that Americans and Israelis are
'victims' and you get two very crazy, dangerous, paranoid, war-crazy
countries, one the superpower, the other the client state.

To conclude: The people who founded this modern Zionist state of
Israel were and still are Europeans (Yiddish has largely been replaced
by Yiddo-Hebraic, best called 'modern Israeli' but also American
English).

The single largest group falling under a single term would be the
'Ashkenazim' of C. and E. Europe. They spoke and produced a literate
culture based on Yiddish, which could now be viewed as a broad dialect
band that ranged from German-based to Sorbian-based. Most Europeans
didn't understand much of anything at all about Yiddish because it was
written in an alien script and used by a 'non-Christian people'. The
other important group in the foundation of Israel were the so-called
Sephardim, who were culturally speaking also Europeans. While the
Yiddish-speaking Ashkenazim were formed from Italic, Balkan, Persian,
Turkic and Slavic and possibly Caucasus sources, the Ladino-speaking
Sephardim of Spain are largely of Arabic and N. African origins (their
historical tragectory complicted by their exodus to the Ottoman realm
when Spain was re-Catholicized). Even this sort of fairly recent
development takes on near incomprehensible twists in the arguments
about why European Jews deserve to take over Palestine. When Israelis
refer to their mixed population and various ethnicities, they often
include the Sephardim as 'ME Jews'--when they are as European as their
more populous Ashkenazic counterparts (although this argument could
still be complicated if people would start to admit just 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] American Jews Who Reject Zionism

2010-06-26 Thread CeJ
RD:There is also the argument of Shlomo Sand, that the concept of Jewry is
a modern concept, that the Exile never happened, that there were mass
conversions involved in the formation of the Jews in Europe (and
elsewhere), and therefore that the actual ties of European Jews to
ancient Judaea are spurious. Thus the founding Zionist myth is . . . a myth.

To argue for anything on any of these bases, against Zionism as well as
for, defies logic.

As I understand it, the now infamous  Koestler 13th Tribe thesis was
really an attempt of a non-religious Zionist to show that the Jews of
Europe largely had a European ethnogenesis, in order to counter
European anti-semitism. I haven't read the book, but I have seen how
its arguments and evidence have been only of selective use to serious
scholars of the topic. Now the sad sick joke is that the work is
attacked as anti-semitic and is cited constantly by the Zionists so as
to obscure the very real scholarship that is showing that the standard
accounts of the ethnogenesis of European Jewry (W. European Jews moved
to C. and E. Europe to escape Christian persecution) has far too many
missing parts and implausiblities. Wexler has done considerable work
on showing how Ladino-speaking Sephardim are of N. African origin and
how C. and E. European Ashkenazim are of basically Turko-Slavic
origin. Even those who have tried to dimss his discussions haven't, as
far as I can see, shown them to be implausible (whereas one very large
implausibility is E. Europe getting a very large Jewish population
because of the migration of a few ten thousand Jews from what is now
France--before foods like potatoes, European populations in most parts
didn't increase rapidly).

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] American Jews Who Reject Zionism

2010-06-26 Thread CeJ
Clearly, not having read it, you misunderstand it.  Koestler was
arguing that the Ashkenazis originated from Khazar Jews who fled
Eastward when the Mongols destroyed the great Khazar Jewish Empire in
the Volga basin and northern Caucasus (the very name Ashkenazi derives
from a Biblical figure, Ashkenaz, who the 9th-century Babylonian
patriarch, Saadiah Gaon, identified as the ancestor of the Khazars).
It is generally held (including by Koestler) that the Khazars were
originally Turkic, but the territories that became the Khazar
heartland were those (beyond the mountains of darkness) into which
Sargon II had deported the ten northern Israelite tribes more than a
millennium earlier and this is perhaps behind Saadiah's identification
of ther Khazars with Ashkenaz.  Koestler, I think, was mainly
concerned with establishing his own ancestry among that Jewish Khazar
group which accompanied the Magyars (who were not Jews) in their
migration from Khazaria to the Pannonian plains.
Shane Mage

Tsk tsk. At most what I have done is either understood a wrong
argument made about
Koestler's controversial work or I have misunderstood a correct
paraphrase of it. Nor does reading something guarantee one depth of
understanding.

At any rate, Koestler is on record as having said one of his
motivations was to show
how irrational European anti-semitism was based on ethnic or racial arguments.
Maybe I overstated the European part of the argument, but perhaps what was meant
was see the Jews of Europe are not afterall Semitic. I would have
started with the idea
that Yiddish is an Indo-European creole with a Semitic script and gone
from there.


The nation of Russia could be shown to have similar mixed origins on
its southern frontiers.

Koestler was a dabbler and imaginative, so most likely his work is of
little use to read and where
it was valid, most likely superceded. Still, Koestler deserves credit
for renewing
modern interest in the Khazars--and also seems to have revived
scholarly interest in the
real scholars that Koestler relied on in writing his book.

We don't know what the language(s) of the Khazars was (were), but most argue it
was Turkic or a mix of Persian and Turkic languages. The ethnogenesis of
modern Russia shows a similar mix and Russians are called 'Europeans'.

One issue is we are not really very clear on who the Magyars or
Bulgars were in the time
of Khazaria, and we are pretty hazy on Avars (not the Caucasus ones)
and Ugrians (the last of whom
seem to have the lasting linguistic impact on modern Hungarian).

The danger in Koestler's work is the Zionists say it is used by
anti-Semites and now they claim that Sand's new book is largely in
agreement with it (so that Sand's book can also be similarly
dismissed).

The more interesting work has been done by Wexler, highly recommended.
For a start, see:
http://www.israelshamir.net/Contributors/Contributor17.htm

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] American Jews Who Reject Zionism

2010-06-26 Thread CeJ
Wexler is the best on the ethnogenesis, Coffman is the best look at
the genetics (another complicated area that is being misused both by
the Zionists and the anti-semites--but we know who gets to place
pieces with the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal,
misinterpreting genetic studies to show how linked the European Jews
of Israel are to the Levant (never Mesopotamia! which is where much of
the 'middle east genes' go back to). Coffman's work does show that
Koestler and the scholars he draws on were on to something with the
Khazar arguments.

 http://www.jogg.info/11/coffman.htm

selected excerpts:

Ironically, however, many scholars believe the Ashkenazi population
probably had its earliest roots in Rome, where Jews began to establish
communities as early as the second century B.C.  While some of these
Jews were brought to Rome as slaves, others settled there voluntarily.
 There were as many as 50,000 Jews in and around Rome by the first
century CE, most who were “poor, Greek-speaking foreigners” scorned
for their poverty and slave status (Konner 2003, p. 86).  Eventually,
however, many of these slaves gained their freedom, continuing to live
in and around Rome.



By the first century, however, the Jewish Diaspora had already spread
to a number of regions of the world, many of which may have
contributed to the make-up of the early Ashkenazi Jewish community.
These include the Aegean Island of Delos, Ostia (a main port of Rome),
Alexandria, and other places in Macedonia and Asia Minor (Konner 2003,
p. 83).  Jews also began to migrate north of the Alps, probably from
Italy (Ostrer 2001).



By 600 CE, Jews were present in many parts of Europe, with small
settlements in Germany, France and Spain.  More to the east, there
were also small Jewish settlements along the Black Sea, as well as
larger communities in Greece and the Balkans (Konner 2003, p. 110).



By the 12th-13th centuries CE, Jews were expelled from many countries
of Western Europe, but were granted charters to settle in Poland and
Lithuania (Ostrer 2001).  The Ashkenazi Jewish population expanded
rapidly in Eastern Europe, growing from an estimated 15,000-25,000
people in the 13th-15th centuries, to two million by 1800 and eight
million in 1939 (Ostrer 2001, Behar 2004b).  Thus, Jewish settlement
in Eastern Europe became the dominant culture of the European Jews,
and then of most Jews throughout the world.


--

The misinterpretation of the Cohanim results was damaging in some ways
to the wider understanding of Jewish genetic ancestry.  For example,
one widely published media quote went like this: “This genetic
research has clearly refuted the once-current libel that Ashkenazi
Jews are not related to the ancient Hebrews, but are descendants of
the Kuzar (sic) tribe – a pre-10th century Turko-Asian empire which
reportedly converted en masse to Judaism.”  Further, it was claimed
that “[r]esearchers compared the DNA signature of the Ashkenazi Jews
against those of Turkish-derived people, and found no correspondence”
(Kleinman 1999).



However, it would soon become very clear that Jewish DNA was much more
complicated than was presented by the media in their reporting of the
Cohanim data.  And Jewish Khazarian ancestry would come to the
public’s attention yet again when another DNA study was conducted,
this time on the Jewish priestly group known as the Levites.

--

Given that the Khazarian kingdom arose in the area of today’s Ukraine,
it is likely that there was a significant amount of indigenous Eastern
European ancestry among this group.  And, in fact, the various
descriptions of the Khazars provided by ancient writers attest to the
probable heterogeneous ethnic mixture in this group.



According to an 11th century Arab chronicler Ibn-al-Balkhi, the Khazars are



. . . to the north of the inhabited earth towards the 7th clime,
having over their heads the constellation of the Plough.  Their land
is cold and wet.  Accordingly their complexions are white, their eyes
blue, their hair flowing and predominately reddish, their bodies large
and their natures cold.  Their general aspect is wild” (Koestler 1976,
p. 19).  An Armenian writer described them as having “insolent, broad,
lashless faces and long falling hair, like women.  (Koestler 1976, p.
20).



A slightly more flattering picture is provided by Arab geographer Istakhri:



The Khazars do not resemble the Turks.  They are black-haired, and are
of two kinds, one called the Kara-Khazars [Black Khazars] who are
swarthy verging on deep black as if they were kind of Indian, and a
white kind [Ak-Khazars], who are strikingly handsome.  (Koestler 1976,
p. 20)



However, Koestler (1976, p. 22) cautions the reader not to place too
much weight on this description, since it was customary among Turkish
peoples to refer to the ruling classes as “white” and the lower clans
as “black.”



It is clear that the Khazars were closely connected to the Huns, who
themselves are 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] American Jews Who Reject Zionism

2010-06-26 Thread CeJ
RD:I can't say I keep up with Zionist arguments since 1967. There have been
a number of arguments for over a century to bolster the obviously shaky
arguments for the colonization of a patch of desert that had no live
connection with the European Jews of the 19th century. 

There are connections however. Religious Jews (radicals) moved to
Palestine under Ottoman rule and helped in the development of this
part of the Ottoman realm. I'm not an expert on these movements, but
they most likely wanted to get away from Europe, not just its
anti-Semitism but its secularism and assimilation to secular culture
(which is still Christian--European Christian Secularism, a sort of
worldview that reaches its post-mo apotheosis with people like
Christopher Hitchens). So the fact that religious Jews were in
Palestine and then Israel even if they weren't for Zionist Israel made
it possible for all sorts of religious Jews to come to accept Zionist
Israel (with some holdout groups in places like NYC).

How much weight those arguments were given depended heavily on the actual 
situation of
European Jews, and of course there were weighty counter-arguments as
well. Now if there were no connection whatever between contemporaneous
Jews of a century ago and ancient Judaea, meaning that ancient Judaea
never existed, or that there was no component of its inhabitants that
made its way to Europe ever, then I suppose the argument for Palestine
as opposed to Uganda, Argentina, or Nevada may have never gotten
anywhere, though you never know.

I take a different tack. If we want arguments based on re-asserted
property rights that are supposed to go back to where the bulk of
Jewry was located in the classical world, then why not modern-day
Iraq? The interesting shift over 2000 years was from Mesopotamia
hosting the largest number of Jews to Poland, Russia and then the US
being the population centers of world Jewry by the early 20th century.
That would account for 90% plus of the population.


 However, for the sake of argument, suppose that modern day Jews could be
connected to the ancient Israelites, and assume also that a huge
percentage of moder Jews got that way via conversion rather than a
bloodline to ancient Israel. So what difference does that make? I
remember from 45-50 years the argument that Israel is the homeland of
the Jews, but I never heard even once any argument for racial or ethnic
purity and I can't see what damned difference it would make one way or
the other, any more than I ever heard any arguments based on the Bible
or the notion of the chosen people. Of course, people may well have
harbored those ideas and I missed the memo. The point remains, the only
argument I ever heard, at least one I can remember that stuck in my
head, was the argument from the history of anti-semitism all over the
world, and the argument from the Holocaust. As far as I know, these were
the only arguments anyone cared about, but apparently I was wrong.

That is the beauty of a discussion list over a personal blog or
homepage. We are not circumscribed by the memos you missed over the
years. You do have a point--that the strongest --most often made--
argument was some sort of emotional response to the Holocaust (German
Nazis slaughtered the Jews, so the survivors should return to
Palestine, and if God won't see to it, by goddamnitalltohell, the US
and the UN will).

The Zionists often harness contradictory arguments depending on which
audience of rulers they wish to manipulate.  We have seen all sorts of
arguments:

1. Holocaust, never again.
2. Palestine the desert, the Jews made the desert bloom.
3. The Grand Mufti was a Nazi and perpetrator of the genocide against Jews.
4. Jews are the original inhabitants of Palestine, before it was Palestine.
5. Modern day Palestinians are the descendants of Muslims who
conquered the place.
6. Genetic evidence shows that Jews never intermarried with N.
Africans, Europeans or other ME people.
7. The Arabs are responsible for the plight of the Palestinians.

RDwould at least grant a more convincing
perspective than the simple-minded propaganda of Stalinists and third
world nationalists, which turns out to be a less effective ideological
tool in combatting Israel's actions than they fancy.

I'm not sure who the Stalinists are. You seem to use the term the way
Zionists use the term 'anti-Semite'.
Palestine resists, some of us will not forget al-Nakba, whether you
miss the memo or not.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Austerity

2010-06-24 Thread CeJ
What does he know if he thinks BIff Delong wrote a good book? First,
what is the connection between fiscal austerity (now being imposed on
UK and Japan) and interest rates? I'm sure there are connections, but
I can think of a number of reasons why they ought to raise interest
rates. Currently the long-term low-interest regimes just feed
speculation bubbles controlled by the usual market-makers, like the
big banks, private equity and hedge funds, who have a lock on markets
and access to them (you need to be able to 'lever' or 'leverage' your
money simply to get into the room where the decisions are made). It's
also obvious that low interest rates don't necessarily make people and
firms go out and borrow--the promise of good returns on investment do
that. But if it's to expand a company or set up a small business, they
don't borrow now because they don't see the economy as getting better
and providing more profits for their investments. About the only thing
that has happened in the US at the bottom of the economy is some home
re-finance, as if the US didn't already have enough of that.

However, many developed countries have been making their small-time
savers pay for the recession.  You have a lot of people who used to
rely on interest income in savings accounts (which link to money
markets and bond markets). And they are getting nothing now.

I've said this for years about Japan. We have had 20 years of low
interest and it didn't re-float the economy. If anything, it's made
all those retired people have less and less money to spend year after
year.

If I never read another piece of Krugmanite shit in my life it will be
too soon. Liberals have no conscience either.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] The method in Israel's madness

2010-06-15 Thread CeJ
Escobar is better than most--he was one of the few who went to
Afghanistan when the US invaded and actually reported on some of what
was going on, rather than relying on the Pentagon's e-war fake news
feeds.
However, one thing missing in the analysis is the fact that the US
practices the same mad dog fear tactics in its own occupations.
McCrystal is in Afghanisn to use the same terroristic
'anti-insurgency' methods he used in Iraq, much of which was derived
from Israel's 'success' at dismantling the PLO and then Hamas (with
Hamas clinging to its existence). Of course Israel and the IDF sought
to strike a similar terroristic killer blow at Hezbollah and it
backfired--Hezbollah and its key Sunni allies in S. Lebanon defeated
the IDF in the field (when thousands of dollars of missiles are being
used to destroy a billion dollars in equipment, that is a defeat) and
nearly sunk the IDF's naval flag ship by firing a missile from the
back of a pick up truck. That sent alarm bells off with the Pentagon
because they realized that Iran had pursued relatively cheap but
effective technologies that were designed to counter the US's and
Israel's high tech weapons. More than some theoretical nuke that Iran
would be years away from ever getting onto a missile, its the
thousands of conventional missiles they have that scare the fuck out
of the US and Israel. So the national security establishments in both
countries are trying to figure out how to draw Iran into a conflict
that they could control but would lead to Iran being rendered
militarily ineffective--like what was done to Saddam Hussein and Iraq
for over a decade.

Back to the specific isssue of Hamas and Gaza. The IDF does have very
concrete concerns there because if Hamas were to achieve even a
fraction of Hezbollah's ability to defend itself, the IDF would be
hardpressed to continue the military arm of zio-imperialist expansion
and erasure of all of Palestine (as well as, if possible, some of
Lebanon). Also, and this has to be part of Iran's plans, it's only a
matter of time before Israel reaches the point where its
much-subsidized political economy can not sustain all that spending on
the IDF. The only reason why it can continue, for now, is US support.
And that is looking very much like end-of-empire obliviousness right
now.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Greed Explains the Disasters and the Lying Afterwards

2010-06-15 Thread CeJ
Of course it's not greed in the sense that BP is no more greedy than
Exxon-Mobil or Halliburton or Transocean or McDonald's or Pres.
Obama's tax accountant. It's capitalism. And capitalism will not be
defeated by admonishment or appeal to less 'base' motivations.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] UAW pays Wall Street

2010-06-12 Thread CeJ
UAW pays Wall Street

http://dealbook.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/05/21/treasury-hires-lazard-to-advise-on-a-g-m-i-p-o/

excerpt:
A G.M. spokesman, Tom Wilkinson, declined to comment on the hiring. In
an e-mailed statement, he added:

We understand there is a lot of anticipation and speculation
around the I.P.O. There a number of factors that will influence the
timing, including the state of the economy, capital market conditions,
the state of the auto business, G.M.’s performance and others. The
bottom line is we will launch an IPO when the conditions are right and
GM is ready.

Lazard is no stranger to G.M.’s restructuring: it advised the United
Auto Workers union last year in negotiations with the company and the
federal government. And one of its restructuring bankers, James E.
Millstein, joined the Treasury Department last year as its chief
restructuring officer, although he does not work on the government’s
auto matters.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Rightwing pundit: Helen Thomas voices world's view on Israel

2010-06-10 Thread CeJ
Of course this is a pack of right wing lies. Re Helen Thomas: her
remarks, if she has been quoted correctly, are repellent, but one should
add that there is a logical distinction between Israel's right to exist
as a state, Jewish or otherwise, and the right of Jewish people to live
there, regardless of their proximate or distant origins. The right of
all peoples to live a viable life in the modern nation-state on par with
all other citizens (or perhaps i should say denizens) is a generally
recognized if not practiced principle since the end of World War II.
However anybody got to be where they are (that is, in a particular
nation-state), it is too late to demand they go back where they came
from. 


I didn't find HT's remarks repellant, I found them erroneous. Most of
the Jews of Israel (Jewish being defined here by the religious
confession of their grandparents) don't trace their roots back to
Germany. They come from C. and E. Europe, mostly Slavic language and
culture countries (and indeed more and more ethnolinguistsw are
arguing that the best way to make sense of Yiddish cultures of Europe
is to put them in the Slavic groups).

HT is most likely of Lebanese Christian descent (I'm guessing but time
and time again this is the case). I'm also guessing but she was
probably for years one of  UPI's few personnel who could understand
Arabic, and could well have been placed there by the CIA, since the
CIA makes heavy use of news services and journalists to gather
intelligence (which is just information they think relevant to their
tasks of securing the empire). I'm sure many in the establishment have
wanted her to retire a long long time ago, and they finally found
their excuse to make her a pariah in the eyes of the captive media and
the zombies who let the media determine their world view (or reinforce
it, feeding the fantasy that this or that person is, in part, in
control because he or she embraces 'conservatism').

If all the people in Israel holding more than one passport went off to
one of the other countries that provided these passports/dual
citizenships/dual residence, off back to the UK, UK, and what is now
Russia, I would bet the current warpig national security state of
Israel would collapse.

Finally, I have to say I draw a far different lesson from WW II. I
thought the reason we ended up accomodating so many interests and
ended up saying 'this was the good fight' was to keep European settler
groups from doing anymore landgrabs, with the residents of a place
being killed, forced to flee or kept under conditions like a police
state. It was supposed to be the war that ended colonialism or made it
ethically unviable. See for example Ghandi on the matter.

As the case of South Africa would prove, it took far more than WW II
to end it. And there is still Palestine and there is still Ireland,
among others.

Yes, Israel is a fact on the ground (a nuclear armed paranoid warpig
state of New New Zion, sponsored by a Christian New Zion, the US). But
so is the memory of Palestine and the people who have been so wronged.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Rules are symbolic , built on symbols.

2010-06-10 Thread CeJ
RD:The issue is not coherence in the semantic sense, but syntactic
 intelligibility. 

The issue for proponents and opponents of a formalised grammar might
be: Is it use of rules that decides syntactical well-formedness? Time
and time again I have seen Chomskian grammarians use their 'intuition'
that this or that chunk of language is not well-formed or not possible
within a given language, and yet actual language use, such as the
artefacts of a corpus (now completely searchable using computers and
the internet) show the exact opposite.

I think more and more it's that most people have no time for a type of
linguistics that doesn't want to deal with real language.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Rules are symbolic , built on symbols.

2010-06-10 Thread CeJ
Speakers proficient in a language know what expressions are acceptable
in their language and what expressions are unacceptable. The key
puzzle is how speakers should come to know the restrictions of their
language, since expressions that violate those restrictions are not
present in the input, indicated as such.

This is a chunk lifted from the piece I posted, I think. Or was it one
CB posted? Anyway,
speakers 'know' what is and is not acceptable, but actually what they
say they know when asked to
rate something consciously, meta-linguistically can contradict what
they actually say and do when
communicating in a language. Also, the sort of example
sentences/clauses that Chomskian
linguists use to have 'native speakers' rate something as acceptable
are often so communicatively
unmotivated and contextually insufficient, it is impossible to rate
them. Also, if you take in dialects and sub-dialects and idiolects,
you see what is and what is not acceptable is not necessarily in
agreement
under the umbrella term 'English' (or any other language--indeed, if
sociolinguistics shows anything conclusively is that there are no
languages like 'English' or 'German' or 'Chinese'). Finally, there is
the example of pidgins, wich are used to communicate quite effectively
in many situations, and yet lack something in terms of grammar as is
usually defined by linguists.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Rules are symbolic , built on symbols.

2010-06-09 Thread CeJ
http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20627621.000-language-lessons-you-are-what-you-speak.html?full=true

Language lessons: You are what you speak

excerpt:

LANGUAGES are wonderfully idiosyncratic. English puts its subject
before its verb. Finnish has lots of cases. Mandarin is highly tonal.

Yet despite these differences, one of the most influential ideas in
the study of language is that of universal grammar. Put forward by
Noam Chomsky in the 1960s, it is widely interpreted as meaning that
all languages are basically the same and that the human brain is born
language-ready, with an in-built program that is able to decipher the
common rules underpinning any mother tongue. For five decades this
idea has dominated work in linguistics, psychology and cognitive
science. To understand language, it implied, you must sweep aside the
dazzling diversity of languages and find the common human core.

But what if the very diversity of languages is the key to
understanding human communication? This is the idea being put forward
by linguists Nicholas Evans of the Australian National University in
Canberra and Stephen Levinson of the Max Planck Institute for
Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

They believe that languages do not share a common set of rules.
Instead, they say, their sheer variety is a defining feature of human
communication - something not seen in other animals. And that's not
all. Language diversity is the crucial fact for understanding the
place of language in human cognition, Levinson and Evans argue.

In recent years, much has been made of the idea that humans possess a
language instinct: infants easily learn to speak because all
languages follow a set of rules built into their brains. While there
is no doubt that human thinking influences the form that language
takes, if Evans and Levinson are correct, language in turn shapes our
brains. This suggests that humans are more diverse than we thought,
with our brains having differences depending on the language
environment in which we grew up. And that leads to a disturbing
conclusion: every time a language becomes extinct, humanity loses an
important piece of diversity.

Since the theory of universal grammar was proposed, linguists have
identified many language rules. Although these are supposed to be
universal, there are almost always exceptions. It was once believed,
for example, that no language would have a syllable that begins with a
vowel and ends with a consonant (VC), if it didn't also have syllables
that begin with a consonant and end with a vowel (CV). This universal
lasted until 1999, when linguists showed that Arrernte, spoken by
Indigenous Australians from the area around Alice Springs in the
Northern Territory, has VC syllables but no CV syllables.

Other non-universal universals describe the basic rules of putting
words together. Take the rule that every language contains four basic
word classes: nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs. Work in the past
two decades has shown that several languages lack an open adverb
class, which means the number of adverbs available is limited, unlike
in English where you can turn any word into an adverb, for example
soft into softly. Others, such as Lao, spoken in Laos, have no
adjectives at all. More controversially, some linguists argue that a
few languages, such as Straits Salish, spoken by indigenous people
from north-western regions of North America, do not even have distinct
nouns or verbs. Instead they have a single class of words to encompass
events, entities and qualities.

Even apparently unassailable universals have been found wanting. This
includes recursion, the ability to infinitely embed one item in a
similar item, such as Jack thinks that Mary thinks that... the bus
will be on time. It is widely considered to be a characteristic that
sets human language apart from the communications of other animals.
Yet Dan Everett at Illinois State University recently published
controversial work showing that Amazonian Pirahã does not have this
recursive quality (Language, vol 85, p 405).

The more we learn about languages, the more apparent the differences
become (see Tower of Babel). While most linguists have somehow lived
with these anomalies, Evans and Levinson believe they cannot be
ignored. The haul of clear and empirically impeccable universals,
after decades of searching, is pitiful, Evans notes. He and Levinson
argue that the idea of universal grammar has sent researchers down a
blind alley. We should embrace linguistic diversity, they say, and try
to explain the forms that languages actually take. To that end, they
published a paper outlining their theory in Behavioral and Brain
Sciences last year (vol 32, p 429). Everett has described it as a
watershed in the history of linguistic theory.

If languages do not obey a single set of shared rules, then how are
they created? Instead of universals, you get standard engineering
solutions that languages adopt again and again, and then 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Rules are symbolic , built on symbols.

2010-06-09 Thread CeJ
CB: This is an interesting puzzle, although Language learners may have
limited access to some such ungrammatical expressions when they
mistakenly say them themselves. Perhaps it is a matter in part of a
very high skill at learning from mistakes, trial and error and ability
to generalize the lessons.


In applied linguistics and foreign language teaching (most prominently
in the world capitalist system, English), a distinction is made
between mistakes (which appear to be random, no matter what Freud
might think) and errors.

Errors are supposed to be systematic, often thought to be the result
of overgeneralization or applying aspects of the first language to the
second/foreign one or being unable to take in a new feature of the
second/foreign one because it is so unknown, different from,
unprecedented in the first language. On the other hand,  others second
language acquisition theories say these 'marked' aspects of the
foreign/second language are more easily and quickly mastered.

But what is more interesting, if you ask me, about mistakes and errors
in the language production of speakers is this: people who have
acquired a native language/primary language from infancy typically
catch themselves making their mistakes and will attempt to correct or
clarify in the process of their production. Second language
learners/foreign language learners most typically do not catch their
errors. They often do not even pick up on clues from the person they
are speaking to (such as a teacher) that there has been an error that
is causing a problem in the communication.

So foreign language learners have a much harder time monitoring their
own output, discerning their errors or making corrections in the
process of communicating, while native speakers do not (unless they
are given an e-mail program and a mailing list!).

Charles Jannuzi

-- 
ELT in Japan
http://www.eltinjapan.com/

Japan Higher Education Outlook
http://japanheo.blogspot.com/

We are Feral Cats
http://wearechikineko.blogspot.com/

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Why , oh, why are humans so thoroughly socially determined ?

2010-06-03 Thread CeJ
CB: Ha ha.  Egyptology has not completely failed; hieroglyphs have
been translated, etc. There's the _Book of the Dead_,

Which I'm sure you read everyday at lunch, right CB? That is,
afterall, why you and your descendants practice memorial mass retainer
burial and advanced mummification techniques.


CB: How would you know that the cultures weren't as ancient, if none
of their content didn't get through to you ?


I was just observing that it is a popular myth about 'the ancient' and
what it is when people often have in mind late antiquity and even
early middle ages. For example, the 'ancient Hebrews' (who quite
possibly were Iron Age Indo-Europeans who assimilated to Canaanite
--Semitic--culture), the 'ancient Etruscans', the 'ancient Egyptians'.

Even in the case of the very impressive Egyptians, 2500 BC is not the
Stone Age unless you are some kind of weird fundamentalist on a 5000
year timeline to the current moronic post-modernity of now.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Obama's grade on energy policy: F minus minus

2010-05-31 Thread CeJ
More background reading on the push to take wells deeper into the seas
and at the same time deeper into the earth--with profitability assured
by US government subsidy and 'sequestration' of much cheaper oil in
Iraq (if Iraq produced on the level of Saudi Arabia and Russia, and
most think its fields could exceed this,  there would be a glut of oil
on the market).

http://www.offshore-mag.com/index/article-display/7488119241/articles/offshore/drilling-completion/us-gulf-of-mexico/2009/08/bp-drills__giant_.html

BP drills oil discovery in the Gulf of Mexico

Published: Sep 2, 2009

Offshore staff

HOUSTON -- BP says it has drilled a “giant” oil discovery on the Tiber
prospect in Keathley Canyon block 102 in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico
Transocean’s using semisub Deepwater Horizon. The well, in 4,132 ft
(1,259 m) of water, struck oil in multiple lower tertiary reservoirs,
BP reports. It was drilled to a total depth of approximately 35,055 ft
(10,685 m), making it the deepest well ever drilled by the oil and gas
industry, the company says.

BP says it is too early to estimate the discovery’s resource
potential, but the company believes it is in the same class as its
other major discoveries in the GoM, including Kaskida, which is
estimated to have 3 Bboe in place.

“Tiber represents BP's second material discovery in the emerging Lower
Tertiary play in the Gulf of Mexico, following our earlier Kaskida
discovery in Keathley Canyon block 102,” says Andy Inglis, BP’s chief
executive of exploration and production. “These material discoveries
together with our industry leading acreage position support the
continuing growth of our deepwater Gulf of Mexico business into the
second half of the next decade.”

BP plans drill an appraisal well on Tiber to determine the size and
commerciality of the discovery.

BP operates Tiber with a 62% working interest. Co-owners are Petrobras
(20%) and ConocoPhillips (18%).

09/02/2009

http://www.offshore-mag.com/index/article-display/4721530076/articles/offshore/vessels/us-gulf-of-mexico/2009/09/bp-extends_semisub.html

BP extends semisub Deepwater Horizon contract

Published: Sep 29, 2009

Offshore staff

ZUG, Switzerland -- A subsidiary of BP has awarded Transocean a
three-year contract extension for the semisubmersible Deepwater
Horizon. The extension, which covers operations in the Gulf of Mexico,
begins in September 2010.

Capable of operating in water depths up to 10,000 ft (3,048 m), the
Deepwater Horizon entered service in 2001 and recently set the world
record for the deepest oil and gas well at 35,050 ft (10,683 m) total
vertical depth, drilled for BP.

09/29/2009

http://www.offshore-mag.com/index/article-display/9853137298/articles/offshore/volume-69/issue-10/departments/gulf-of_mexico/gulf-of_mexico.html

BP makes ‘giant’ oil discovery

BPrsquo;s Tiber is its second discovery in the Lower Tertiary. Its
first, Kaskida on Keathley Canyon block 292, is approximately 50 mi
(80 km) east-southeast of Tiber.



BP says it has drilled a “giant” oil discovery on the Tiber prospect
in Keathley Canyon block 102 in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. The
well, in 4,132 ft (1,259 m) of water, struck oil in multiple lower
tertiary reservoirs. It was drilled to 35,055 ft (10,685 m) TMD,
making it the deepest well drilled ever by the oil and gas industry,
according to BP. Transocean’s semisubmersible Deepwater Horizon
drilled the well.

BP says it is too early to estimate the discovery’s ultimate resource
potential, but the company believes it is in the same class as its
other major discoveries in the GoM, including Kaskida, which is
estimated to hold 3 Bboe in place, with a projected recovery factor of
10% to 20%. Kaskida, discovered in 2006, was BP’s first major
discovery in the Lower Tertiary. The field is currently under
appraisal, with first production expected in 2014 at the earliest.

BP plans drill an appraisal well on Tiber to determine the size and
commerciality of the field. BP operates Tiber with a 62% working
interest. Co-owners are Petrobras (20%) and ConocoPhillips (18%).

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Former Argentine president says Bush told him ‘the best way to revitalize the economy is war.’

2010-05-31 Thread CeJ
I saw this on Marxmai list, but I'm going to go in a different
direction with it. If this is true, we see Kirchner believes more of
what typical ruling class believes, hence wars are just an undesirable
but often unavoidable part of the mix of governments, international
agencies and capitalism.

On the other hand, we see that the Bushwa actually expresses the same
thing that much of the American working class believes. The thinking
goes something like this: the US had an economy and political system
that rewarded the American working class (white working class) for
winning WW II, and WW II, more importantly, is the only thing that
brought the great depression to an end. In the 1970s, as 'one-factory'
towns collapsed all over the NE and ME (and parts of the South too!),
you could hear the same working class refrain: we need a good war to
bring back good times. It's also important to remember that the
working class/lower class is the vast majority of even the most
'egalitarian' or 'redistributive' of capitalist economies, and that
the US is about as regressive, in such terms, as it gets.

Yes, America post 9-11, happy days are here again!

CJ


Former Argentine president says Bush told him ‘the best way to
revitalize the economy is war.’

http://thinkprogress.org/2010/05/28/argentine-prime-bush-war/

Former Argentine president says Bush told him ‘the best way to
revitalize the economy is war.’

Oliver Stone’s new documentary South of the Border, which interviews
several left-wing leaders of Latin American countries, has unearthed a
startling new allegation from Argentina’s former president Néstor
Kirchner. During his interview with Stone, Kirchner said he once
discussed global economic problems with former President George W.
Bush. The former Argentine president says that when he suggested a new
Marshall Plan, referring to the WW II-era European reconstruction
plan, Bush “got angry” and suggested that “the Marshall Plan is a
crazy idea of the Democrats.” Instead, Kirchner says, Bush suggested
that “the best way to revitalize the economy is war”:

KIRCHNER: I said that a solution for the problems right now, I
told Bush, is a Marshall Plan. And he got angry. He said the Marshall
Plan is a crazy idea of the Democrats. He said the best way to
revitalize the economy is war. And that the United States has grown
stronger with war.

STONE: War, he said that?

KIRCHNER: He said that. Those were his exact words.

STONE: Is he suggesting that South America go to war?

KIRCHNER: Well, he was talking about the United States: ‘The
Democrats had been wrong. All of the economic growth of the United
States has been encouraged by wars.’ He said it very clearly.

Watch it:

It is worth noting that despite the prosecution of two major wars,
there was very minimal net job growth during Bush’s tenure as
president. And of course, he bequeathed an economy that suffered
massive job losses in his wake.

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Obama's grade on energy policy: F minus minus

2010-05-29 Thread CeJ
Americans still don't have health care, the US military still occupies
Iraq, its occupation of Afghanistan has expanded, and Obama pulled a
real bonehead move earlier this year when he announced a reversal--a
total boneheaded flipflop on offshore drilling--and gave the likes of
T. Boone Pickens (oil industry hedge fund operator now) and Transocean
(the company that owned and operated and leased Deepwater Horizon to
BP), at least temporarily,  a huge profit from capital gains. T. Boone
was on CNN, but he didn't divulge that his hedge fund's most valuable
holding was the company that gave us the Deepwater Horizon disaster.
BTW Transocean is HQd in Geneva for tax purposes, but it is most
thoroughly an American company.

The clock is now ticking for the new commander in the buck stops here
chief. There is enough oil in that resevoir that BP and Transocean
were tapping into to poison all the oceans of the world. Hint:
predator drones and the 10th mountain division aren't going to save
our asses on this one. I'm wondering if Goldman Sachs isn't now trying
to figure out if they should make artificial shorts on end of the
world scenarios.

http://www.gurufocus.com/news.php?id=88985

T. Boone Pickens, founder and chairman of Dallas-based BP Capital LLC,
spoke with Bloomberg's Margaret Brennan yesterday about President
Barack Obama's pledge to expand offshore oil and natural gas drilling
and the outlook for U.S. energy policy. The president wants to permit
exploration in parts of the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean not
previously offered to companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp., the
country's largest energy producer.

Naturally, T. Boone Pickens’s hedge fund is full of Oil  Gas companies:

No. 1: Transocean Inc. (RIG), Weightings: 12.76% - 345,980 Shares

Transocean LTD., formerly Transocean Inc., is an international
provider of offshore contract drilling services for oil and gas wells.
Transocean Inc. has a market cap of $27.78 billion; its shares were
traded at around $86.38 with a P/E ratio of 7.6 and P/S ratio of 2.4.
Transocean Inc. had an annual average earning growth of 22% over the
past 10 years.


http://streetauthority.com/a/how-obama-instantly-created-22-billion-investor-wealth-1244

The action added at least $1.5 billion in market value to the offshore
drilling industry's major players. President George W. Bush might have
been an oilman -- and, to be fair, he did try to open up some areas
for drilling -- but it's Barack Obama who today snapped his fingers
and added nearly $1 billion in market cap to Transocean (NYSE: RIG),
the leading offshore drilling company.

Transocean, for example, which operates 138 mobile offshore drilling
rigs, grew its earnings from $0.22 a share in 2003 to an astonishing
$12.48 last year, a gain of +5,572.7%. That's reflected in its
historical earnings multiple, which is more than 40 times earnings for
the past five years. That kind of earnings growth is possible again.
The shares are up nearly +47% in the past year. Diamond Offshore has
had similarly strong earnings growth, with an average
price-to-earnings ratio (P/E) of more than 30 during the past five
years.

http://www.onn.tv/daily-trading-ideas/transocean-ltd-nyse-rig-cash-secured-put/

The market tends to begin to price things in early. Yesterday,
President Obama proposed opening drilling along Atlantic coastline,
east of the Gulf of Mexico, and north of Alaska. Even if this proposal
is approved, actual drilling would likely not take place for several
years. The largest benefactors would likely be the offshore drilling
industry, in which Transocean Ltd. (NYSE: RIG) has a large fleet of
deep-water rigs and Jackups for shallow water. Since this would be
more long term, the IGP has targeted a cash-secured put if you want to
begin acquiring stock.

RIG Cash-Secured Put Trade Details:

RIG shares are trading at $88.24, up $1.86 today.



http://www.deepwater.com/fw/main/Our-History-3.html

2000

2000 was a key year in Global Marine’s expansion of its
ultra-deepwater fleet. In April, the Glomar C.R. Luigs arrived in the
Gulf of Mexico and began drilling her first well for BHP Petroleum. In
December, the Glomar Jack Ryan was completed and began drilling her
first well in Trinidad under a three-year contract with ExxonMobil.


2001

Discoverer Spirit twice breaks the world water-depth record. 9,727
feet of water 9,687 feet of water.

Discoverer Spirit sets world record for deepest subsea completion.
7,209 feet of water.

Transocean Sedco Forex Inc. and RB Falcon Corporation combine to form
the world's largest offshore drilling contractor.

Global Marine and Santa Fe International merge to become GlobalSantaFe
Corporation, the second largest drilling contractor in the world.

Santa Fe executed contracts with PPL Shipyard PTE, Ltd. of Singapore
for the construction of two high-performance jackup rigs and two
ultra-deepwater semi-submersible rigs with options for additional
drilling units.  Construction began during the first 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Thailand

2010-05-29 Thread CeJ
JF:


 In Japan wasn't land reform imposed by the American
 occupation under MacArthur?

This is what I've read from all the standard sources (like
Reischauer). It seems to have created the Japanese equivalent of the
Republican-voting dairy farmer of the MidAtlantic US. They hold a few
rice paddies and vote for the conservative elements of what ever party
prevails--usually LDP but also Komeito.



 From what I can see what's been going on in Thailand
 is a class struggle accompanied by a split in that
 country's ruling economic and political elites.
 Besides the billionaire entrepreneur they
 had at least one general (who was assasinated)
 and apparently at least some degree of support
 within the country's security forces.  When
 the government decided to suppress the
 red shirts, there were reports of clashes
 between different army and police units.


Yes, there was talk of a civil war, but I doubt it. I'm not even sure
who killed the general. You have to remember that any government organ
like security forces or military will draw heavily on the very sort of
people who will identify with the red shirts. Also, any successful
'national development state' will recruit and indoctrinate people
outside the current elite as the elite expands. So it would seem the
establishment was split on what to do about the protests. But if I'm
reading the situation right, the silence of the king means the
anti-red elements did what most of the establishment supported,
however reluctantly. In such a situation we see Thailand is not that
different from S. Korea or Taiwan in its authoritarian approaches to
dealing with dissent. I think another factor is unease over the
economy because Thailand suffered a lot in the 96-98 crisis and the
current global crisis looks to be still unfolding as a global crisis.

Another factor to consider is the Muslims in the south. Thaksin's
actions against them were brutal and creating far too much tension
with Malaysia and Indonesia.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Why , oh, why are humans so thoroughly socially determined ?

2010-05-28 Thread CeJ
Why , oh, why are humans so thoroughly socially determined ?

CB: Well, it worked to get across the death barrier for scores if not
hundreds of generations. I'm not sure what you are talking about. Some
of the Egyptian stuff and the others _did_ get across to us. We are
not utterly ignorant of those cultures and lives.

Yes, of course, so Cecil B. Demille could completely recreate Egyptian
culture on screen for us.
Etruscan is a dead language of unknown origin and affiliation. Egypt
is now Arabic language.
The 'ancient' cultures' to which you refer were not stone age, nor
were they altogether as ancient
as many people think. However, those cultures did not survive; they
are extinct.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Apple Overtakes Microsoft

2010-05-28 Thread CeJ
Apple Overtakes Microsoft

Prove more than anything that the .com bubble didn't go away, it just
farted its way into a handful of stocks.
Both Apple and MS are bubble-valued stocks, because hope never dies apparently.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Rules are symbolic , built on symbols.

2010-05-28 Thread CeJ
Actually rules can't be rules without symbols, but are they symbolic?

This could be linked to the earlier discussion of how phonetic
gestures make all of language possible, including syntactically
recursive.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] How the GOP Became the White Man's Party

2010-05-28 Thread CeJ
Although Goldwater was not the man to lead them into their promised
land, this supports my idea that we need to account for Goldwaterism
too. Now we see Buchanan can't lead some of them out into populist
nationalism because he is a Catholic.

CJ

http://www.alternet.org/rights/147004/how_the_gop_became_the_white_man%27s_party?page=4

Such obdurate pronouncements proved too ideological for the 1964
electorate. When a journalist asked Goldwater what it might feel like
to become president one day, he had replied, Frankly, it scares the
hell out of me. Voters agreed, and he picked up just 52 of 538
electoral votes. Even as the Arizona senator fell far short in his
drive for national power, however, he proved an able revolutionary
within his own party. Unlike any politician since Prohibition, he made
crime a galvanizing national campaign issue. By winning five
ex-Confederate states plus his own, he proved that Republicans could
compete in the solid South, and he shifted the party's center of
gravity to the Sunbelt. Proclaiming famously that extremism in
defense of liberty is no vice, he drove liberals like his primary
opponent Nelson Rockefeller into Republican exile. Within a single
election cycle he repositioned the Grand Old Party as the standard
bearer of opposition to civil rights. Only two years earlier, poll
respondents had perceived almost no difference between the two major
parties when it came to race. By late 1964, however, Americans
overwhelmingly identified Democrats with civil rights and Republicans
with a go-slow, states' rights approach. The sea change was apparent
at party gatherings, where the conservative journalist Robert Novak
was dismayed to hear a new cadre of GOP activists conversing freely
about niggers and nigger lovers. Under Goldwater's leadership, he
concluded, the Republican Party was now a White Man's Party.

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[Marxism-Thaxis] How British is BP?

2010-05-27 Thread CeJ
I was wondering this because of the anti-BP backlash being given 'BP
is foreign connotations'.

It's not really foreign, it's not even really very British in terms of
who owns the equity stakes.

The second largest holder of the stock, Barrow, Hanley, Mewhinney 
Strauss Inc., links to its parent, Old Mutual, so I would suppose that
is where you might find some of the traditional elite British
ownership of BP shares.

But overall its global strategy included gettings it stock held by a
diverse bunch of institutional and mutual fund share holders, which
makes this company more American than anything else.

The largest institutional investor is actually an American private
equity group based in Philadelphia.
The second largest looks to be a private equity arm of Old Mutual,
based in Dallas, TX.

I haven't added up all the % of these huge institutional and mutual
fund investors, so perhaps there is a huge chunk of directly held
controlling equity out there I couldn't find anything about.

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/mh?s=BP+Major+Holders

Major Holders   Get Major Holders for:
BREAKDOWN

% of Shares Held by All Insider and 5% Owners:  0%
% of Shares Held by Institutional  Mutual Fund Owners: NaN
% of Float Held by Institutional  Mutual Fund Owners:  NaN
Number of Institutions Holding Shares:  1039

MAJOR DIRECT HOLDERS (FORMS 3  4)

Holder  Shares  Reported
No Major Direct Holder info Available for BP

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Holder  Shares  % Out   Value*  Reported
WELLINGTON MANAGEMENT COMPANY, LLP  34,841,626  1.11$1,988,411,595  
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WELLS FARGO  COMPANY   7,768,541   .25 $443,350,63431-Mar-10
Tradewinds Global Investors, LLC7,436,248   .24 $424,386,673
31-Mar-10
GATES (BILL  MELINDA) FOUNDATION   7,133,000   .23 $407,080,310
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TOP MUTUAL FUND HOLDERS
Holder  Shares  % Out   Value*  Reported
VANGUARD/WINDSOR II 9,784,515   .31 $549,106,98131-Jan-10
VANGUARD SPECIALIZED-ENERGY FUND7,867,800   .25 $441,540,936
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VANGUARD/WELLINGTON FUND INC.   7,136,000   .23 $379,706,560
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FIDELITY DIVERSIFIED INTERNATIONAL FUND 6,650,000   .21 $353,846,500
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PRICE (T.ROWE) EQUITY INCOME FUND   3,698,700   .12 $211,084,809
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VANGUARD/WELLESLEY INCOME FUND  3,572,300   .11 $207,086,231
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American Beacon Large Cap Value Fd  2,153,900   .07 $122,923,073
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FMI LARGE CAP FD2,146,000   .07 $122,472,22031-Mar-10
PRICE (T.ROWE) NEW ERA FUND 2,114,473   .07 $120,672,974
31-Mar-10
PUTNAM EQUITY INCOME FUND   1,697,000   .05 $90,297,370 
28-Feb-10


-

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wellington_Management_Company

Wellington Management Company is one of the largest private,
independent investment management companies in the world.[citation
needed] The firm has client assets under management totalling over
US$448 billion, and serves as investment advisor for over 1,500
institutional clients in over 40 countries.[1]  Assets are invested
using a broad range of asset classes and investment approaches.

In 1928, Walter L. Morgan, a Philadelphia-based accountant,
established the first balanced mutual fund in the United
States.[citation needed] He established WMC as an innovator and leader
in investment management irrespective of the great market crash of
1929.[citation needed] In the 1960s, four investment professionals, W.
Nicholas Thorndike, Robert Doran, Stephen Paine and George Lewis took
the leadership of the firm and refocused the business. In 1979, 29
original partners bought back the firm — believing the private form of
ownership to be in the best interests of clients.[citation needed]

---

http://www.pionline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?djoPage=record_detailsCATEGORY=DATAJOE_PRINTABLEpgTitle=Managers+[YEAR]-^Money+ManagersdjoPgTitle=AEW+Capital+Management+LPdjoProjId=850djoYear=2009djoRid=34205





1

Barrow, Hanley, Mewhinney  Strauss Inc.

2200 Ross Ave., 31st Floor, Dallas, TX 75201; phone: 214-665-1900;
fax: 214-665-1933; www.barrowhanley.com


 (U.S. millions)

Total assets managed worldwide: $44,598

Total worldwide institutional assets: $44,598

Total U.S. client assets: $43,651

Total U.S. tax-exempt assets: $43,193

Total U.S. institutional tax-exempt: $43,193

Internally 

Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Launching Language: The Gestural Origin of Discrete Infinity

2010-05-27 Thread CeJ
CB: A demonstration is worth 10,000 words. But ten thousand words can get
across the death barrier and a bodily demonstraton cannot .Most of
what I'm saying, my premises are anthropology a,b,c. I'm just posing a
little  esoteric hypothesis for some basic anthropology.

Alas, apparently 10,000 words didn't work for the Etruscans or the
Egyptians or Ozymandias.

I think the only thing necessary for language and culture to get
across the 'death barrier' is simply that there is another living
generation in existence who can accept them before the previous
generation dies off. That is all you have hinted at here as well.

CJ

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[Marxism-Thaxis] Recursion

2010-05-26 Thread CeJ
 Recursion in language
The use of recursion in linguistics, and the use of recursion in
general, dates back to the ancient Indian linguist Pāṇini in the 5th
century BC, who made use of recursion in his grammar rules of
Sanskrit.

Linguist Noam Chomsky theorizes that unlimited extension of a language
such as English is possible only by the recursive device of embedding
sentences in sentences. 


I think this gets overdone. First, I doubt that one of Chomsky's
challengers has actually found a human language without some recursion
(as broadly defined here).

Two, I doubt that anyone will ever be able to prove its recursion than
makes human language unique from other forms of communication.

Three, recursion in language more than anything, I think, means that
nothing is conceived and planned  in a simple SEQUENCE, even though
that is the illusion of language--a sequence of sounds, a sequence of
syllables, a sequence of words, a sequence of phrases, a sequence of
clauses, building up to sequenced discourse.

f you step back and examine what must have gone into producing such a
sequence, it's obvious the planning stage in the 'mind' wouldn't have
to be limited to such a sequence. In fact, such a sequence would make
language impossible. So, for example, if I know I'm going to
say/produce the words 'top place' in one of my phrases, in terms of
articulation I may well be planning and then articulating sounds that
come after my initial [t] of 'top'.

So although one side of the illusion is a nice sequence of segments,
my prearticulated language is not such a nice sequence of segments.
And this then builds up across my entire control and ability to
produce a message in discourse.

However, the other side of the illusion of recursion is the illusion
of infinity. Speech (and its 'mental' planning) happen in the real
world, in real time. And they happen in the phenomenological world of
the speaker/writer/interlocuters/listeners/readers. And they happen in
'linguistic time'. None of these can transcend the limits of the real
world into 'infinity'.
Try to over-embed and use recursion too much and you end up
incomprehensible. Indeed, one of the challenges for people learning to
write their own language is to simplify their language so their reader
can understand it more easily.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Evolutionary timeline for language

2010-05-26 Thread CeJ
Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Evolutionary timeline for language

 The entire article looks dubious and would require a lifetime to discuss.

CB: A lifetime ?  What is dubious ?

Most articles on linguistics at wiki are awful. Any attempt to revise
them will result in a small clique 'reverting' them.

I was however jokingly referring to the many 'dubious discuss'
comments that peppered the article.



 I think the overall thrust of the accounts I posted excerpts from is
 formed thus: that syntactisized upper body

^
CB: Why upper body ?  Body language includes the lower body , too, the
whole body.

Yes but gesturing with syntax and coordinated (mentally controlled)
with vocalization limits you to the upper body. And it is on the face
and the upper respitory and digestive traces where the two systems
converge.


Gesturing and sophisticated
 vocalization abilities

^^^
CB: A lightbulb just went on for me with your emphasis on gesturing.
You are just saying that a sign language came before a vocalized
medium for language, no ?

A type of 'sign language' is still found in speech, even though we are
dominated by the vocal aspects of the system. Try speaking without
moving your body. Try speaking to someone without 'gesturing'. People
who are fluent sign language users still VOCALIZE when they gesture.
Their language is as human and as much a language as any other, but
with a different emphasis. And what does their sign language have in
common with our speech? One, it has a 'phonology' in that we (at least
think we) can analyze into sub-lexical 'units'. Two, it is controlled
from the top down (the 'mind' must first conceive a thought to be
communicated and then in some sort of 'buffer' structure and plan it,
and then realize it). Three, it is kinesthetically experienced by the
person controlling and producing it.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Launching Language: The Gestural Origin of Discrete Infinity

2010-05-26 Thread CeJ
CB: In other words,
the fact that the signifier is _not_ the thing or processes that it
signified is the characteristic that allows it to get across the death
barrier that the body of the ancestor faces.

So that which crosses the death barrier is not actually a thing? So
what is it? Isn't there a danger here of the usual
structuralist idealism? That somehow the social-symbolic defies our
material world, subsisting in a 'third realm' that is crystalline and
godless but still immaterial?

Also, I think you have to separate that (1) language life and
development transcends the 'death barrier' and (2) that language, in
part, and only in part, conveys the information and knowledge we use
to learn and to work with others to create, produce, change our world.

Still, languages change over time, given enough time, because every
act of decoding and encoding in the real world of social being brings
about change, such that we would have a hard time communicating in
'English' with Geoffrey Chaucer (even if he didn't speak the way he
wrote).

And all it takes is one failed generation of knowledge transfer and
transformation and cultures can break down, fail to reproduce into
future generations.

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Recursion

2010-05-26 Thread CeJ
I wrote:

f you step back and examine what must have gone into producing such a
sequence, it's obvious the planning stage in the 'mind' wouldn't have
to be limited to such a sequence. In fact, such a sequence would make
language impossible. So, for example, if I know I'm going to
say/produce the words 'top place' in one of my phrases, in terms of
articulation I may well be planning and then articulating sounds that
come after my initial [t] of 'top'.

Let me try that again. I got distracted by the fact that I can't load
the utah edu pages where the list is archived.
And then the usual 'phonetic miscues' that seem to come more and more
into my English as I live longer and longer
outside an anglophone culture and as my brain gets older.

Try 2

If you step back and examine what must have gone into producing such a
sequence (in terms of language control, planning on the part of the
language producer), it's obvious that the planning stage in the 'mind'
wouldn't have to be limited to such a sequence. In fact, such a
sequence might make using a language to communicate cognitively
impossible.

So, for example, if I know I'm going to say/produce the words 'top
place' in one of my phrases, in terms of planned articulation and even
articulation before phonation, I may well be planning and even
articulating sounds that come after the initial aspirated [t] of 'top'
before I actually pronounce that initial aspirated sound. I should add
electromyographic research I did on some of the key muscles in
articulating and producing speech actually revealed this. So, for
example, we could see in terms of 'muscular signature' the
'swalllowed' glottalized final [p] of 'top' and the initial aspirated
[p] of 'place' coming into play before the initial [t] of 'top' was
actually pronounced. In other words, in controlled speech processes,
you plan and even articulate some sounds across whole syllables and
words, even though the illusion is one of a simple sequence of sounds.

So one side of the illusion is a simple sequence of sounds, syllables,
words, phrases, clauses, etc.

The other side of the illusion is a complex recursion into an infinity
that seems to swallow itself.

However, you still have to move forward through to actual articulation
with phonation/vocalization, and so an actual sequence does emerge.
It's a somewhat recursive one, but not that recursive. Real time and
linguistic time make sure it isn't. It's not a simple sequence of
notes, but a complex sequence of plucked chords, to use a musical
metaphor.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Launching Language: The Gestural Origin of Discrete Infinity

2010-05-26 Thread CeJ
Charles, I don't understand the purpose of so many posts. Since reading
them all is out of the question, and I  have no principle of selection
that would work, I end up not reading any of them, thogugh some of them
must be important or at least inteesting.

Carrol

I'm not sure which Charles you are addressing, but I will point out I
was attempting to consolidate the discussion
somewhat by putting all the replies to replies into one post, under
one related thread.

Is the issue the number of posts or the total volume of text?

I could try a summary if you want.

CJ

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Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Launching Language: The Gestural Origin of Discrete Infinity

2010-05-25 Thread CeJ
Mostly in reply to CB.

CB: Calling it bizarre is bizarre, with your grunts and snorts version
of early human communication. You are out of your gourd. Were they
cavemen , too. You read too many cartoons.

Of course , the wheelwright uses stories to teach how to build a wheel. Duh.

Actually these are early theories of how languages were developed.
It's pretty standard stuff, typically cited in linguistics texts and
dismissed in the same sentence.

Carrol's vulgar materialist image of wheelwrights as only workers of
the hand, and not of the brain, talking to their apprentices,  showing
them how to make wheels by dumb-speechless gestures and mime, silent
imitation, leads to stupid versions of workers as mindless bodies
performing like robots.

The point is symboling can't transcend across generations unless real
humans live in bodies and have in-body experiences, learning, working,
working together.

The hands-on experience that humans get is mediated by language.
Language is interaction with dead ancestors.  With language, there is
always a third person ,an ancestor, involved in the conversation.

First and foremost, it is interaction with living relatives and kin members.
Also, languages change over time, your cross-generational process of
symbolling apparently does not.

The language is filled with symbols which are signs-symbols with an
arbitrary relationship between the signifiers and the signified.
The word for tuber in any of these languages has an arbitrary
relationship to what it refers to.

But that doesn't explain the origins of a language's vocabulary, which
might well have started as a mix of the motivated and the arbitrary
(with arbitrary always hemmed in by what is possible).

CB: Are you saying when they first learned to do it, the Sgt. did not
say a word to them in teaching them how to do it ?  With manuals, you
are talking about a period after _writing_ has been invented, not
language.  Could they _make_  from scratch a Browning automatic weapon
without any language mediating ? Why try try to makeout that language
doesn't mediate almost all of human processes since language began

It's redundant and not illuminating to say language is symbolic or
that language mediates language use. Could the current space program
in the US, if given all the money in the world, reproduce the Apollow
lunar missions? No. What has changed is the collective know-how and
wherewithal of the living generations.

The M2 is remarkable in that it is still being manufactured and/or
re-built to spec. The US military never abandoned that design. Still,
it only gets made or re-built because there is a group of living human
beings who know how to make it.

When we get to Moses, there is early writing in ...uh stone , on tablets.

Actually most likely not, but are you really trying to refer to
cuneiform incised in clay?

CB: Here's a minimal pair : beige/base.   the zh/ s binary opposition
voiced/unvoiced distinguish the meaning between these two words.

That would be a contrast of more than one feature. zh is voiced,
continuous, fricative. It's closest voiceless counterpart is sh, as in
rash, bash, etc.
zh is typically an voiced, alveo-palatal fricative. The s of 'base' would be
described as an unvoiced, alveolar fricative. Also, the internal vowel
nucleus of 'base' would differ both qualitatively and quantitatively
from the internal vowel nucleus of 'beige'. Or, in different terms of
analysis, you could say that the nuclear diphthong transitions to
voiceless in 'base' while the nuclear diphthong of 'beige' doesn't.

At any rate, as I've said repeatedly before. It's circular to say that
binary oppositions of units like 'phonemes' determine lexical meanings
while using lexical meanings to determine what the binary units of
opposition are. And UK's 'aeroplane' is a nice minimal pair with US
'airplane', but that doesn't mean the meaning contrasts.

CB: Well, on this thread, I'm sort taking the opposite position. I say
that language did play a critical role in original human productive
and transformative activities, material culture. So, is your critique
of structuralism here directed at Carrol 's comments ?  I don't
follow.

I think what I'm saying here is saying something redundant and
circular about language doesn't explain how language developed or how
human culture developed.

CB: We need something that totalizes and overlays the collective
languagee community, otherwise people wouldn't be understanding what
each other was saying.

It's funny how for millenia people of this or that group have come
into contact with this or that other group, couldn't speak each others
languages, and subsequently, in three generations time developed into
bilingual communities or communities with a new language. That didn't
come from dead ancestors symboling. It came from living people
interacting.

CB; Sexual selection _is_ natural selection. Differential fertility
is the main thingy in evolutionary biology, not differential
mortality.


Re: [Marxism-Thaxis] Evolutionary timeline for language

2010-05-25 Thread CeJ
The entire article looks dubious and would require a lifetime to discuss.

I think the overall thrust of the accounts I posted excerpts from is
formed thus: that syntactisized upper body gesturing and sophisticated
vocalization abilities converged and were somehow (not yet explained)
able to integrate cognitive capacities. So linguistic ability appears
to be its own modality, but uses other pre-existing modalities (so
that doesn't mean we are going to find a clearcut language mode carved
out in our brains). More and more I have to reject the idea that we
need to lump human language in with the rest of psychology or with the
rest of cognitive science. OTOH, I have to say I think Chomskyist
formalism is as complete dead end as abstract social structuralism.

CJ

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