Category Archives: Neoliberalism

Fukushima – Deep Trouble, by Robert Hunziker

Source: counterpunch

shutterstock_286493465-1

The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant disaster may go down as one of history’s boundless tragedies and not just because of a nuclear meltdown, but rather the tragic loss of a nation’s soul.

Imagine the following scenario: 207 million cardboard book boxes, end-to-end, circumnavigating Earth, like railroad tracks, going all the way around the planet. That’s a lot of book boxes. Now, fill the boxes with radioactive waste. Forthwith, that’s the amount of radioactive waste stored unsheltered in one-tonne black bags throughout Fukushima Prefecture, amounting to 9,000,000 cubic metres

But wait, there’s more to come, another 13,000,000 cubic metres of radioactive soil is yet to be collected. (Source: Voice of America News, Problems Keep Piling Up in Fukushima, Feb. 17, 2016).

And, there’s still more, the cleanup operations only go 50-100 feet beyond roadways. Plus, a 100-mile mountain range along the coast and hillsides around Fukushima are contaminated but not cleansed at all. As a consequence, the decontaminated land will likely be re-contaminated by radioactive runoff from the hills and mountains.

Indubitably, how and where to store millions of cubic metres of one-tonne black bags filled with radioactive waste is no small problem. It is a super-colossal problem. What if bags deteriorate? What if a tsunami hits? The “what-ifs” are endless, endless, and beyond.

“The black bags of radioactive soil, now scattered at 115,000 locations in Fukushima, are eventually to be moved to yet-to-be built interim facilities, encompassing 16 square kilometers, in two towns close to the crippled nuclear power plant,” Ibid.

By itself, 115,000 locations each containing many, many, mucho one-tonne bags of radioactive waste is a logistical nightmare, just the trucking alone is forever a humongous task, decades to come.

According to Japanese government and industry sources, cleaning up everything and decommissioning the broken down reactors will take at least 40 years at a cost of $250 billion, assuming nothing goes wrong. But dismally, everything that can possibly go wrong for Tokyo Electric Power Company (“TEPCO”) over the past 5 years has gone wrong, not a good record.

And, Japan is hosting the 2020 Olympics?

Continue reading Fukushima – Deep Trouble, by Robert Hunziker

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

PLEASE DO NOT POISON MY BRAIN WITH THE US ELECTIONS!, by Andre Vltchek

Andre Vltchek is by far one of the most engaging truth tellers out there, tirelessly working for the greater good. He captures the sentiment of the vast majority of thinking people with his piece below on US Elections, that pitiful farce repeated every four years.

A little while back, we had published an excellent interview between Andre and Milan which is definitely a must read as well.

AE
————————————————————————————-

Text first published by New Eastern Outlook (NEO)

5
Milan Kohout is a thinker, performer, and professor. He was born in Czechoslovakia, where he lived before signing of ‘Charter 77’, and immigrating to the United States, where he became a naturalized US citizen. Mr. Kohout got thoroughly disappointed with capitalism, and the Western regime.

I am consecutively stuffing my ears with various airline earplugs, in order not to hear the news blasted on the radio.

I am closing my eyes when the topic appears on TV, even on RT or Press TV.

I skip newspaper headlines.

I beg my friends, comrades and relatives not to bring up the subject in front of me.

I don’t want to know anything about the US Presidential elections!

It is not some sort of pose or “rebellion”; it is just an honest, powerful fear of having my brain damaged, my thoughts derailed from searching for alternative humanistic and political concepts.

I see no need to know who, from all those already pre-approved by the Regime and therefore allowed to “compete”, is going to get nominated by his or her political gang, and who will be finally mounting the saddle of that static wooden horse which is as a rule galloping nowhere, inspires no one and only jumps around crushing with its heavy murderous horseshoes everything and everyone who dares to demand true freedom.

Go and follow elections; even participate in them! If you believe in Western multi-party “democracy”, good for you! Or bad!

Decades, in fact centuries, of the terrible stagnant political scene in North America and Europe has taught you nothing? Then go for it and stick those pieces of marked paper into a carton box!

It was done for ages, that paper insertion. The same thing, when slaves were being chained and shifted from Africa to that “New World”, when hundreds of millions were exterminated by Western colonialism, when the Chinese people were brought to North America for horrible labor, and treated like animals. It was done when the first and the second generation of Europeans were annihilating almost the entire native population of North, Central and South America, as well as the Caribbean.

The West created elections. So that the elites from within the white race, as well as the white race in general, could justify the brutality with which they have been ruling the world. They need to feel that they are fulfilling the wishes of the world, or at least of their own citizens.

10953952_876998929009194_8188282591175165754_n

The moneyed and bellicose clans always get elected; there are ways to assure it.

Several Greek philosophers protested: they were defending direct democracy, the direct “rule of the people”. They were sidelined, or silenced altogether.

 *

During the previous US Presidential elections I was in Nairobi, Kenya, where my good friend, an Indian bookseller at Yaya Center, was pushing on me several Greek classics.

“Why?” I asked him.

Continue reading PLEASE DO NOT POISON MY BRAIN WITH THE US ELECTIONS!, by Andre Vltchek

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

Conversation: New Zealand’s National Poet lays down the law on the TPPA

Source: Te Kahu Rolleston

Te Kahu Rolleston is Aotearoa’s (New Zealand) National Poetry Slam champion and has one hell of a penchant for weaving words with devastating effect.

Watch him lay down the law. The people’s law.

In the words of uncle Bob:

“Get up Stand up, Stand up For ya rights, Get up Stand up, Don’t give up the fight”

Mohsin Siddiqui

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

Kiwis come out to exercise that thing called freedom, by Mohsin Siddiqui

Anti-TPPA protesters in Auckland on 4 Feb 2016
Anti-TPPA protesters in Auckland on 4 Feb 2016

Today was a good day to be out and about in Auckland. A bouquet of human values was on display that is usually confined to that, overtly distorted, place called ‘personal space’ in this ever shrinking public space.

The protests in Auckland were anticipated by the vast majority of the population in this truly unique Island in the Pacific. There is an almost electrifying blend of people from all walks of life who came out to voice their dissent.

The Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) was signed despite the opposition of the majority of the population. It does not ,however, surprise as precisely such an outcome was predicted at last week’s Auckland Town Hall meeting. The intent of the protesters was more to do with the assertion of their right to dissent and to mark a start to their struggle as renowned New Zealand journalist and film maker Bryan Bruce noted.

Queen Street, Auckland, NZ
Queen Street, Auckland, NZ

Signing the TPPA is merely symbolic and no matter what the state propaganda machine regurgitates (from PR coaches), the truth is that the majority of a nation cannot be silenced. And as such, a piece of paper is meaningless. The people do not want the TPPA and they will not allow for it to steal their right to life,dignity and freedom.

The Establishment should simply give up pushing through a corporate takeover of sovereign Aotearoa. What is the point? Do they never expect to interact with the common man? Do they really think human spirit can be crushed by politics of fear,lies,intimidation and injustice?

Last night the Auckland Transport Authority ‘mysteriously’ announced that buses will not be running from 09:00am to 03:00pm. That just happened to coincide with the peak commute time for protesters from around Auckland.

This is Aotearoa and its people cannot be dominated by corporations:

To their credit the people were 100% peaceful with their protest and civil disobedience. Men, women, children and the elderly marched in solidarity cheerful,hopeful and dignified as their rights were being signed away at a casino. The government decided to sign a fundamentally undemocratic treaty in the one place they could.

Continue reading Kiwis come out to exercise that thing called freedom, by Mohsin Siddiqui

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

“Democracy” for the plebs

This is how “Democracy” currently works in many parts of the world. Kudos to the people for, either willingly or unwillingly, highlighting the mechanisms of actual power.

This is by no means a condemnation of the people, quite the opposite. It is an attempt to properly create context for what is happening:

Citizenry, abandoned by elected (read: Selected by Big Money) officials, has taken it upon itself to gather signatures on a piece of paper stating its opposition to the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (Read: Fire sale of sovereignty of countries party to treaty to global transnational corporations) being signed against the wishes of the majority of the people.

The piece of paper is being handed to an Imperial Mouthpiece who is the – this is the best part – representative of another Imperial Mouthpiece. The latter mouthpiece supposedly is on this tiny Island to protect the plebs on behalf of an unelected monarch usually seen in colourful hats.

The plebs will now wait for justice, which is unlikely to be delivered.

This cycle has been in play for a few hundred years and the human species has convinced itself that this is the best system of government. This is just one visual representation of how power actually works pretty much all around the world. When challenged with logical conclusions of the absurdity of the majority seeking approval from the 0.001% , the usual response is anger and condemnation with labels of “Communist”, “Utopian” and other assorted terms being readily assigned.

It beggars belief why in the 21st century with all the accumulated knowledge, technology, skills and intellect the human species displays its incapacity to establish a method of governance that merely functions as a conduit to fulfilling the needs of the governed population.

Primary on the list of goals would be the following:

i) Food & Water

ii) Shelter

iii) Medicine

iv) Education

vi) Technological benefits

This is not a call to move back to the cave/tent/choose your appropriate cultural analogy. Society itself will determine via equal representation what it wishes to manifest in it’s physical environment. It is merely a thought on a different method of resource allocation.

With us racing into the 21st century with more and more open conflict and a mass extinction underway, I truly wish us good luck.

Mohsin Siddiqui

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

Sovereignty being gambled away in a casino near you, Vetran Investigative Journalist & Documentary Maker Reports

[Edit: Not original headline]

Source: Bryan Brue – Investigative Journalist & Documentary Maker, New Zealand

12604779_948396165242736_2081960664693779256_o

Is Divide And Conquer The New TPPA Strategy?

Why did the government offer to host the signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement? (TPPA)

Why at an Auckland Casino and not parliament?

Why on February 4th before parliament sits for the new year?

Why do it just 2 days before Waitangi Day which has often been a focus of protest over Treaty related issues ( and knowing that the TPPA raises significant concerns over Treaty obligations and Sovereignty)?

Have these decisions been the result of sheer stupidity with no thought to pressure and unnecessary costs it puts on our police over security issues ?

Or the result of political cunning?

While stupidity can’t be ruled out, those of us who remember the 1981 Springbok Tour protests against sporting contacts with apartheid South Africa, haven’t forgotten how the then Prime Minister -National’s Robert Muldoon- was able to turn peaceful demonstrations into a law and order issue through the use of baton wielding riot squads.

Why? Because he had his eye on the election later that year and he wanted to present himself as a strong leader.

It put the police into the invidious position of behaving like Muldoon’s private army and it damaged their relationship with the New Zealand public (that is so dependent on trust) for a very long time.

Does the Key government want to spin legitimate concerns over the TPPA into a law and order issue?

Or has National simply blundered in their timing and created a security nightmare for our police?

I don’t know.

What I know is the police are practicing their riot drills and that if protestors confront the police on February 4th with anything but peaceful demonstration, the TV pictures of violent clashes will allow Key to paint the protestors a an unruly mob of radicals who want to stop ‘what’s best for New Zealand’.

So let’s not give him that opportunity.

Let’s not get arrested.

Let’s remember what a previous National Prime Minister did

By all means let’s protest on the day, but let’s be clever about it.

Kia Kaha

#stopTPP #BryanBruce #NoWayTppa #Tppanoway#stoptppa #politicsNZ #NZpolice
#childpovertynz #NZGreens #NZLabour
#National #MaoriParty #Mana #NZFirst

Bryan Bruce Bio:

Born in Scotland in 1948, his family emigrated to New Zealand in 1956. He grew up in Christchurch and attended the University of Canterbury where he graduated with an M.A.in Sociology and Philosophy. He now resides in Auckland New Zealand.

His feature length documentaries range in topic from natural history to crime, justice , poverty and inequality issues.

He is also an author.Some of his published non-fiction works include:

A Taste of History ( Batemans 2007) A history of everyday foods.
Hard cases (Random House New Zealand 2008
Historia Smaku ( Cartablanca Poland 2008).
Jesus: The Cold Case Random House New Zealand 2010
Jezus: Dowody Zbrodni (Cartablanca Poland 2011

He is an advocate for the rights of children and administrates the face book pagehttp://www.facebook.com/InsideChildPoverty

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

REVIEW OF THE NOVEL “BUTTERFLY PRISON” BY TAMARA PEARSEN

Review by: Andre Vltchek

51VRejVh4tL

The Butterfly Prison begins slowly, combining seemingly disconnected stories that are taking place in poor neighborhoods of Australia. The stories are like tiny vignettes; shy, modest, minimalistic but always significant and beautifully told. A fear here, a bitter humiliation there, a dream of a child interrupted by a police officer.

Then suddenly, the stories begin to interconnect, intertwine, and the novel gains speed. Real pain – deep and overwhelming – emerges. Profound hurts, bitterness and injuries are slapping the faces of the characters, and somehow, we are drawn in and begin suffering with them.

It is Australia that we don’t know; that we are not supposed to see. After some 40 pages I thought, “it feels little bit like Carpentaria”, but then, just a few pages later, it did not feel like anything else, it only felt and read like the “Butterfly Prison”.

“Then they dreamed the same dream. The whole world had been stolen, and people tumbled about on it like hungry and lost refugees in a foreign land. All spaces seemed to be owned by private companies. And the world had fences in strange places. And many long walls.

Paz couldn’t move, and his real leg jerked as though he had fallen down stairs. Mella murmured. In the stolen world they walked carefully, trying not to upset anything, like visitors. Because it wasn’t their home. Barbed wire between their toes. They bumped into another wall and got a new bruise, and it seemed that there were bluebruised people everywhere discovering new walls.

A queue then to buy back a bit of the world: a little bit of space for $2.5 million, so they could have somewhere to sit down. But they had no money, so they walked and walked and bumped into walls.”

“A stolen world”! That could easily be the second title of the novel.

*

Tamara Pearsen is my friend, and my comrade; she is a true revolutionary.

She is a person who spent several years fighting for the Latin American revolutions, for “the process”, first in Venezuela and then in Ecuador. She gave everything to the revolution, never looked for privileges, and never demanded special treatment. She is pure and she is really strong. She saw it all, from the bottom, from the angle of real people.

When she told me that she wrote a novel, I was almost certain that it would be about South America, based in Venezuela, Ecuador or Bolivia.

But Tamara decided to write about Australia, about her complex homeland.

We sat in a Vietnamese restaurant in Quito, Ecuador, when she said, simply:

“After all these years, it is time to go back; to visit Australia… I am scared.”

But she already went back. Butterfly Prison is her great return home. Instead of explaining Latin American revolutions to Australian people, she depicted an Australian reality through the eyes of a Latin American revolutionary.

An oppressed and humiliated woman, a child living in hopelessness, adults with no future, a chocking and merciless consumerism, a country that already reached its zenith but without managing to bring zeal, enthusiasm and happiness to its people: those are some of many images of Australia that will stay in our sub-consciousness after reading the “Butterfly Prison”.

Australia – the land where native people were robbed of everything and where they are, until now, living in appalling destitute. Australia, which belongs to the elites; Australia where one has to comply with the ruling-class narrative, or to be crushed and humiliated.

Tamara told me why she wrote the novel, “The Butterfly Prison is life and soul wrenched out and turned into a tale, as a way of saying some things that need to be said – of screaming them in fact. It is unravelling dominant ideas so that beauty, for example, can be what it really is, and we can get some hope from that. Its my grain of sand of solidarity with so many others who have been made invisible in different ways, and I hope that it can reach some of those people and connect with them in that magical way that stories do, and even inspire them.”

 In this, she definitely succeeded.

The Butterfly Prison is filled with compassion and solidarity. It is also full of beauty: not that cheap sentimental beauty of the popular literature of the 21st Century, but of profound, lasting beauty found only in life itself, and in the great works of art.

Two lives of Tamara Pearsen have merged in one powerful novel: one of her childhood and sadness of her native land, Australia, and the other, that of her epic battle for better world which she has been fighting for many years in Latin America.

As the novel progresses, it becomes fully international, with many stages built into its pages: those in India, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Argentina… The battles rage… But at closer look, there is really only one battle: that for our humanity, for human dignity, and for human kindness.

Life, as temporary as a kiss on a cheek: already gone, but a little tingle that lingered behind. Mella thought of the things people of her generation had grown up to believe would last forever: countries, poverty, and capitalism. Yet all those things were gone now. Nothing was forever, nothing was so powerful, except for change.

Now a Latin American writer, or more precisely “an internationalist” writer, a socialist realist, a revolutionary, Tamara Pearsen, returned home, on the wings of imagination, through her powerful novel “Butterfly Prison”, uniting several realities into one. She demands change and she does it determinedly but affectionately. And the result is stunning.

 *

The Butterfly Prison on Amazon, in print, kindle edition, from the publisher’s website, and more about the book from the author’s website.

Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. His latest books are: “Exposing Lies Of The Empire” and Fighting Against Western Imperialism.  Discussion with Noam Chomsky: On Western TerrorismPoint of No Return is his critically acclaimed political novel. Oceania – a book on Western imperialism in the South Pacific. His provocative book about Indonesia: “Indonesia – The Archipelago of Fear”. Andre is making films for teleSUR and Press TV. After living for many years in Latin America and Oceania, Vltchek presently resides and works in East Asia and the Middle East. He can be reached through his website or his Twitter.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn

The Age of Imperial Wars, by James Petras

Source: Global Research

usa-war-crusade

From Regional War, “Regime Change” to Global Warfare

2015 has become a year of living dangerously.

Wars are spreading across the globe. 

Wars are escalating as new countries are bombed and the old are ravaged with ever greater intensity.

Countries, where relatively peaceful changes had taken place through recent elections, are now on the verge of civil wars.

These are wars without victors, but plenty of losers; wars that don’t end; wars where imperial occupations are faced with prolonged resistance.

There are never-ending torrents of war refugees flooding across borders.  Desperate people are detained, degraded and criminalized for being the survivors and victims of imperial invasions.

 Now major nuclear powers face off in Europe and Asia:  NATO versus Russia, US-Japan versus China.  Will these streams of blood and wars converge into one radiated wilderness drained of its precious life blood?

[Please click below to continue reading]
Continue reading The Age of Imperial Wars, by James Petras

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someonePin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on TumblrDigg thisBuffer this pageShare on StumbleUponFlattr the authorShare on RedditPrint this pageShare on LinkedIn