Joe Biden is a disaster. There is no improvement in our lives. In fact, things are worse now that Joe is president.
Inflation, gas prices, rent prices, we still have COVID 19 and just have to live with it, we have Monkeypox in the US and Roe v. Wade is no more.
In two years, the country's been destroyed.
Now we could have protected Roe -- all it took was action in Congress. But Joe couldn't rouse any action there or anywhere.
He's a dottering old fool.
And, as C.I. points out in the snapshot (in full below), why the hell is Joe headed to London for a queen's funeral. Old woman lived over 90s years and never once brought her 'royal ass' to the US for a funeral of a US president.
F**K Elizabeth. F**K her. I'm serious. I live in the city where we had the tea demonstration in the Boston Harbor, where we were supposedly breaking free from the royal family of England. Why the hell are we trying to cower and beg for favor? Again, she wasn't at JFK's funeral -- but she was Queen then -- she couldn't drag her ass over for LBJ's funeral or for Ronald Reagan or George H.W. Bush, why the hell is our president going to London?
Especially when he has more than enough to do here. He doesn't need a trip, he needs roll up his sleevers and start working.
Or he needs to resign. He should resign. These are his retirement years.
Will Lehman is running to become president of the United Auto Workers. This is from his campaign site:
Caterpillar workers: Build rank-and-file committees to unite with Deere, CNH and autoworkers in a fight back!
Dear brothers and sisters at Caterpillar,
My name is Will Lehman. I’m a second-tier, rank-and-file worker at Mack Trucks in Macungie, Pennsylvania, and a socialist. I am running for president of the UAW International in the national elections in October-November.
My campaign is not aimed at “reforming” the corrupt, pro-corporate UAW apparatus, but abolishing this apparatus and placing power in the hands of workers ourselves. I call for workers to form rank-and-file factory and workplace committees, which will enable us to communicate and coordinate our struggles across different plants, companies and even countries.
Only on this basis can we carry out a real fight for what we need, not what the companies claim is affordable. To reverse the endless concessions given up by the UAW bureaucracy, we need massive wage increases for all workers, the real end of the tier system, the restoration of COLA and pensions for active workers and retirees, the return to the eight-hour day and end of constant mandatory overtime, and more.
The UAW has been transformed into a union in name only, with a layer of privileged officials totally unaccountable to workers. This apparatus sits on top of more than $1 billion in assets, built up with our dues, which they use parasitically to fund their own incomes and perks, with more than 450 on staff at the UAW International making more than $100,000 a year.
Direct elections for UAW president and other positions are only taking place because virtually the entire UAW leadership was implicated in a corruption scandal. The scandal proved what we had long suspected: top UAW officials were either bribed by the companies or stealing our dues.
People such as former UAW President Dennis Williams and former Vice President Norwood Jewell, who both played key roles in pushing through sellout contracts at CAT over the past three decades, pleaded guilty and were sentenced to jail as part of a federal investigation. Both, however, were released early from their slap-on-the-wrist prison sentences.
The UAW bureaucracy’s record of betrayals at Caterpillar
For many years, “Caterpillar” has been a word synonymous with corporate ruthlessness and strikebreaking, as well as the bitter betrayals by the organization which claimed to represent workers, the UAW.
In the 1990s, the two strikes at Caterpillar, despite the immense determination and heroism of workers, were sabotaged and sold out by the UAW bureaucracy. The result was a historic decline in CAT workers’ living standards and working conditions. What followed was the wage and benefit tier system, frozen pay for senior workers, the loss of pensions and COLA, rising health care costs, and the closure of countless plants and widespread destruction of jobs.
The attacks on workers have continued up to today. The 2017 contract with Caterpillar backed by the UAW allowed the company to close the Aurora plant. It included further concessions in wages and benefits, despite the company having benefited from record profits. Many workers at the time suspected, with good reason, that the vote was rigged, given the widespread opposition to the deal.
In addition to the relentless assault on living standards, workers have been subjected to increasingly intolerable and dangerous working conditions. The horrific death of 39-year-old Steven Dierkes at Caterpillar’s Mapleton Foundry a little over three months ago was an event which shocked all those workers who read about it. It revealed the harsh truth so many workers confront every day in the US: brutal and deadly industrial sweatshops which resemble the conditions in the 19th century.
As I said in my statement on June 29 when I announced my campaign, “We cannot forget workers like Catherine Pace and Willie Dee, who died of COVID, and Steven Dierkes at Caterpillar and Danny Walters at Dana, who died from poor working conditions.
“We cannot allow ourselves to forgive the companies and the UAW bureaucracy that are indifferent to these deaths and other injuries. It is up to us to ensure that solidarity means we prevent deaths like these, that we have our own backs.”
The Volvo Trucks, John Deere and CNH strikes
A rebellion by workers against the UAW bureaucracy is already well underway. At Volvo Trucks in Virginia last year, nearly 3,000 workers fought a courageous, months-long strike that pitted them against both Volvo (which also owns Mack, where I work) and their lackeys in the UAW, including Ray Curry, the current UAW president. Volvo workers overwhelmingly voted down at least three UAW sellout contracts—twice by 90 percent or more.
No doubt many of you closely followed the historic strike by 10,000 John Deere workers last fall. Deere workers also repeatedly defied the UAW’s attempts to force a pro-company deal down their throats, twice voting to reject a sellout contract.
These strikes showed that the ability of the UAW apparatus to suppress workers on behalf of the companies has come to an end. Workers everywhere, confronting a rapid rise in the cost of living and intolerable working conditions, are looking to take a stand and finally go on the offensive once again.
The struggles at Volvo and Deere last year were only the beginning. For more than four months, our brothers and sisters at CNH Industrial in Racine, Wisconsin, and Burlington, Iowa, have been on strike, also looking to overturn years of UAW-enforced concessions. But the UAW apparatus is doing everything it can to keep these workers isolated and to wear them down, doing nothing to inform, let alone mobilize, its hundreds of thousands of members behind them. At the UAW convention this summer, union executives forced a revote by delegates which reversed an increase in weekly strike pay to $500, lowering it back down to $400, ensuring that CNH workers will continue to be starved out.
Build a mass movement to bring power to the shop floor!
The UAW-Caterpillar contract expires early next year. But the time for workers to organize, mobilize and seize the initiative is now.
Fundamental change will be brought about not by replacing a few bureaucrats in the UAW apparatus. The apparatus as a whole is rotten and needs to be abolished, with power taken into the hands of rank-and-file workers.
The way for us to carry out this task and to win what we need is by organizing ourselves and uniting the collective strength of the working class. My campaign is in solidarity with the International Workers Alliance of Rank-and-File Committees, a growing global network of workers’ organizations.
While the UAW executives endlessly preach nationalism to divide and weaken workers, my campaign is reaching out to our class brothers and sisters in other countries and advancing international working class unity to fight multinational corporations on a global scale, for the betterment of all working class people. Caterpillar, a gigantic transnational conglomerate, has a global strategy, and workers can only carry out a successful fight if they have an international strategy and organization of their own.
My name will appear on the ballot for UAW International president this fall. If you agree with my perspective, I urge you not just to vote for me, but to join my campaign and the fight to build a rank-and-file movement to win what we need. For more information and to get involved, email me at email@example.com.
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for Tuesday:
They delivered a “humble address” agreed by each of the houses of parliament while Charles sat on a raised podium surrounded by assorted figures in outlandish costumes, including the King’s Body Guard of the Yeomen of the Guard and the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen at Arms.
The ceremony was meant to sanctify “our constitutional monarchy”, as “a symbol of stability in an ever-changing world”, in Hoyle’s words. He noted that the late queen had visited Westminster Hall many times to mark historic occasions, including the 300th anniversary of the “Glorious Revolution”. In an example of the rampant cynicism of the event, Hoyle commented, “It is perhaps very British to celebrate revolutions by presenting an address to Her Majesty, but those revolutions led to our constitutional freedoms.”
Like most of the historical references thrown around in the days following the queen’s death last week, it is best for the ruling class that they remain vague. The Glorious Revolution refers to the 1688 war of succession that began with an invasion of England by William of Orange and which deposed the Catholic James II, after which the protestant King William III and Queen Mary swore an oath to uphold the laws made in parliament.
What was therefore being celebrated at Westminster Hall is the ability of Britain’s imperialist bourgeoisie to utilise the monarchy as a means of sanctifying and reinforcing its own power.
This is the essential function of all the daily rituals surrounding the queen’s death that have been given saturation coverage by Britain’s media, presented always in solemn tones no matter how ludicrous the events being reported.
The uproar over the tweet posted by Carnegie Mellon University professor Uju Anya has revealed the hypocrisy of the democratic pretensions of the ruling establishment, and its readiness to resort to censorship to silence dissenting or unpopular voices.
The Nigerian-born Anya, an associate professor in the linguistics department at CMU in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, tweeted last week, upon hearing that Queen Elizabeth II was near death, “I heard the chief monarch of a thieving raping genocidal empire is finally dying. May her pain be excruciating.”
Among those quickly responding to the tweet was Amazon founder and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos, currently listed as the third-wealthiest billionaire in the world. “This is someone supposedly working to make the world better,” tweeted Bezos. “I don’t think so. Wow.”
Anya’s post was quickly deleted by Twitter, which claimed that it violated the social media company’s guidelines.
Anya’s employer also responded, with the following statement: “We do not condone the offensive and objectionable messages posted by Uju Anya today on her personal social media account. Free expression is core to the mission of higher education, however, the views she shared absolutely do not represent the values of the institution, nor the standards of discourse we seek to foster.”
In the typical two-faced style perfected in such circles, the university pledged its commitment to free expression and attacked it at the same time. Anya was using her personal account and was not speaking for the university. If free speech is “core,” why was the statement necessary, not simply dissociating the university from Anya’s views, but also denouncing them?
Multi-billionaire Bezos, it turns out, donated $2 million to Carnegie Mellon in the last few years. The Chief Financial Officer of Amazon, Brian Olsavsky, is the recipient of an MBA degree from the same institution. The statement from CMU was issued quickly after Bezos’ tweet. It is hard to imagine a more direct expression of the way in which today’s institutions of “higher learning” are tied to their wealthy donors. CMU was evidently concerned about its “image,” but this means above all its reputation within the ruling elite.
The professor refused to back down. “If anyone expects me to express anything but disdain for the monarch who supervised a government that sponsored the genocide that massacred and displaced half my family and the consequences of which those alive today are still trying to overcome, you can keep wishing upon a star,” she said in a further tweet. She later sent an email to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette declaring, “I stand by my tweet and do not have any regrets ... I am the child and sibling of survivors of genocide. From 1967-1970, more than 3 million civilians were massacred when the Igbo people of Nigeria tried to form the independent nation of Biafra. Those slaughtered included members of my family. I was born in the immediate aftermath of this genocide.”
British imperialism, under the Labour government headed by Harold Wilson, secretly supplied arms, and ammunition to the Nigerian government during the civil war of the late 1960s. Nigeria had been granted formal independence only at the beginning of that decade, after a period of British colonial rule spanning three-quarters of a century.
Anya’s tweets and other statements reflect a pan-Africanist outlook, one that separates the history of colonialism and imperialist exploitation from the international class struggle as a whole. In any case, billions of people around the world, the descendants of those ruled by the British overlords on almost every continent, in Ireland, Kenya, India and elsewhere, have no reason to mourn the passing of the Queen. The current social media storm has brought to the fore the issue of the history and legacy of colonial rule, and the justifiable hatred it engendered.
This reality was also addressed on DEMOCRACY NOW! yesterday.
Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden's prepping to attend the funeral which begs two questions. First, didn't the US fight a war to be free of British royalty? Second, I'm sorry but what funeral did Liz attend. Liz didn't show for Ronald Reagan's funeral or George H.W. Bush's or Lyndon B. Johnson's or JFK's or . . .
Why the hell does our president need to fawn over Liz and leaves his duties in this country?
She's dead. Rich and privileged, allowed Liz to live to an elderly age (96). That's 15 years longer than the average British citizen and much, much longer than the citizens of the countries the UK robbed and enslaved.
Elderly Joe needs to get his fat and flabby ass on a plane, alright, but not the UK. He needs to go to Jacksonville, Mississippi. Cordell Gascoigne (WSWS) notes:
The 150,000 residents of Jackson, Mississippi once again have water running to their homes and businesses after the city’s public water and sewage system collapsed amid flooding at the end of August. However, the water remains undrinkable and the city remains under a boil-water notice, which has been in place since July, before the current crisis hit.
Despite officials reporting water pressure having normalized, many residents of Jackson have reported very low water pressure and discolored water coming from their taps. On Friday, Molly Minta, reporter for Mississippi Today, recorded herself turning on the faucet at her home in the Belhaven neighborhood of Jackson, only to reveal an ongoing social crime: coffee-brown water. The video was posted on Twitter and has been widely circulated, garnering more than 12.5 million views.
Notwithstanding the the lack of clean drinking water, as of Friday, Jackson’s public schools resumed in-person learning, doubly endangering students in the midst of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Last week, Mississippi Republican Governor Tate Reeves said, “This water system broke over several years and it would be inaccurate to claim it is totally solved in the matter of less than a week,” continuing, “There may be more bad days in the future. We have, however, reached a place where people in Jackson can trust that water will come out of the faucet, toilets can be flushed and fires can be put out.”
On Tuesday, Democratic Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said there was “some optimism” about samples being taken of the city’s water.
For the water to be declared safe and the water boil advisory to be dropped, two days of successful testing is required for health officials in Jackson to issue a declaration clearing the water for consumption. But emergency repairs are temporary, given the system’s aged infrastructure that could malfunction at any point, as it did during the colossal winter freeze of 2021, and again this year.
Joe Biden had no plans to help anyone as president. He ran for the yearbook credit only. Now he hears the clicking of cameras in London and, attention whore that he is, he wants to be part of that. He doesn't want to roll up sleeves and work to address this very serious problem in the US.
Turning to Iraq, ARAB WEEKLY notes:
As he received Turkish intelligence chief, Hakan Fidan, in the capital, Baghdad, the head of the Sunni Sovereignty Alliance Khamis al-Khanjar, sparked a widespread controversy in Iraq, especially, since he does no official capacity to hold such meetings with top foreign intelligence officials.
Political analysts said that Khanjar's hosting of Fidan, in the presence of a number of deputies and leaders of the Sovereignty Alliance, reflected the growing political clout of Ankara among Iraq's Sunnis.
Along with its ties to Khanjar's alliance, Turkey maintains a close relationship with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), which runs the Kurdistan region in northern Iraq, as well as the Turkmen Front, which is influential in Kirkuk and Mosul, in particular.
Analysts do not rule out the possibility that the meeting took place based on an understanding between Ankara and Tehran to convince the Sovereignty Alliance of the need to meet the demands of the pro-Iran Coordination Framework amid the current political crisis, especially over the choice of a president and prime minister and the formation of a cabinet.
The head of Turkish intelligence visited Baghdad, Saturday, the first such Iraqi trip by a high-ranking Turkish official since the Turkish attack which last July targeted a tourist village in the Dohuk governorate in northern Iraq, causing many civilian casualties and sparking a diplomatic row between Ankara and Baghdad.
The political stalemate continues. People continue to either lie or not know the facts -- I'm looking at a man writing for THE NATIONAL. I'm not in the mood for it this morning.
Let's note Julian instead. Sunday, Sarah Abdallah Tweets:
Relatives and supporters of Julian Assange's gathered Sunday in fron of the US Embassy in Mexico City to protest against the impending extradition of the Wikileaks founder to the United States to face espionage charges, on the wake of Secretary of State Antony Blinken's arrival.
Joining Assange's father were the #24F Coalición Vida y Libertad collective who called for a rally and demonstration prior to Blinken's visit. ”I want to thank Mexico for its hospitality and support for Julian Assange, their support has been tremendous particularly (President) Andrés Manuel López Obrador,“ said John Assange.
Julian's brother Gabriel Shipton argued that Blinken could not travel around the world ”lecturing countries about their freedom of press, while keeping one of the most important editors in the world [under arrest] in Great Britain.”
"I want to thank Mexico for its hospitality and support for Julian Assange. Its support has been tremendous, particularly President Lopez Obrador," Assange's father said.
Blinken "travels the world saying that free speech is a top concern in Washington, but they continue to persecute Julian Assange... He is a global symbol of free speech," Gabriel Shipton said, adding that the U.S. cannot give lessons on free speech while "the best journalist in the world" remains in prison.
Here in the Bay Area please join us as we participate in this worldwide solidarity event of the Surround Parliament human chain. We will meet at noon on October 8th at Harry Bridges Plaza in San Francisco. Bring #YellowRibbons4Assange, signs, your family & friends, or just yourself. We will form a human chain of yellow ribbons, come rain or shine. If you can’t make it to San Francisco, create a chain or stand alone in your city and let us and/or @Candles4Assange know about it.
October 8, 2022 - 12:00 pm
Harry Bridges Plaza
Market St. and The Embarcadero
San Francisco, CA 94111
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