Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Behind the Arab Democracy Movements: Why Now? (Video) *Reasons are 1,000 years in the making*

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Mohammed Bouazizi of Tunis, Tunisia set himself on fire on December 17, 2010 in protest and dejection
The subsequent Arab revolts were literally sparked by this initial action
(Unconfirmed photo)

Behind the Arab Democracy Movements: Why Now?

Mohammed Bouazizi On December 17, 2010, Mohammed Bouazizi of Tunis, Tunisia, who sold vegetables from a push cart, was fined for not having a license for his vegetable cart. He was then slapped and insulted by a municipal inspector (some reports said policewoman). His immediate appeal to municipal authorities was of no avail. In frustration and dejection, Bouazizi set himself on fire in front of the municipal building within an hour of the incident. This act of protest literally sparked a revolution in Tunisia. On January 14, 2011 - 28 days later - the tyrant President Zine el Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia was overthrown. Protests spread to other countries and on February 11, 2011, President Muhammad Hosni Sayyid Mubarak of Egypt resigned. The uprisings have spread to virtually every Arab country.

Foreign Rulers Fareed Zakaria of CNN in the video below reviews the history of the Arab people. Through the centuries, non-Arab empires appointed, approved, and/or supported the despots who ruled in Arab lands. The Arab people were suppressed with no rights and little hope. Zakaria states, "For the first time in a 1,000 years, Arabs are taking control of their own affairs. Since the 11th century, Arab lands have been conquered and controlled by foreigners." First it was the Mongols, Pashtuns, and Turks. For centuries the Ottoman Empire ruled. Then in the 19th century the Europeans came, "who carved up the region after WWI creating most of the states we know today." Then came the Cold War, with the USA and USSR "protecting and funding their client states." After the collapse of the USSR, "the U.S. became the only game in town and most of the Arab regimes made their peace with Washington, though Iran tried to present itself as a rival regional power."

America Zakaria continues, "Two American shifts have taken place that have unlocked the region."
* "First, after 911, Washington became acutely aware of the fact that supporting Middle Eastern dictatorships had a downside. It was breeding an extreme, anti-American opposition movement that had embraced terrorism (al-Qaida). So, the U.S. started pushing its allies towards reform and offering much less unqualified support for the dictatorships and monarchies of the Middle East."
* "American power itself was waning. Iraq, Afghanistan, the financial crisis all showed the U.S. was an exhausted superpower. The result, the United States is less willing and less able to play the old imperial role and prop up the old regimes."

Arab Rulers Zakaria notes that Arabs always had local rulers, but these sheiks, kings, and generals were appointed or supported  by the outside imperial powers. These tyrants ruled the local people by force and bribery. "That game is in trouble and the Middle East is witnessing a revolt against the old order everywhere. Where it will lead, where it will succeed, where it will fail, all of this is totally unclear. But this is a big, system-wide and historic shift. So buckle your seat belts, you are watching history in the making."

Technology There is another factor, a crucial factor - the Internet. Expansion of knowledge via technology creates profound change. Specifically, the key factor has been online social media whereby people can organize to cause change. The answer to the Behind the Arab Democracy Movements: Why Now? - the Internet. First it was the printing press invented by Johannes Gutenberg about 1440 and was widespread in Western Europe by 1500. The Renaissance, while arguably by some scholars had already began with small steps, was immeasurably boosted by the printing press and "modern" history began. The Protestant Reformation ensued in 1517 when Martin Luther nailed his Thesis on the door of Castle Catholic Church in Wittenberg, Saxony. Periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, and magazines of all kinds were created in subsequent centuries that challenged the thinking of people. Next was radio developed by Marconi, et. al. in the late 1800s. The first radio news was broadcast in 1920. During this time the telephone was invented by Alexander Bell, et. al. in the late 1800s and early 1900s and while profound was not a true mass communication medium. Later was television, though being developed in the late 1800s and early 1900s, the first regular programming was in Germany in 1929, but widespread use was not until after World War 2. Widespread commercial television began in the USA in 1948. The USA civil rights and anti-Vietnam war movements in the 1960s benefited immeasurably from television. The Internet incorporates all of these mediums on a worldwide scale and instantaneously. For the first time in the history of humanity, people can talk to each other anywhere on Earth and join together for common goals, bypassing controlling institutions such as governments or religions. People can challenge, reform, and overthrow these institutions as a more organized group.

CNN: Behind the Arab Democracy Movements CNN's Fareed Zakaria says that the Arab democracy movements are 1,000 years in the making.


Libyan protester holds sign revealing the scope of the Arab uprisings

Egyptian revolution

Libyan revolution

This article was originally posted on Mountain Vision

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NYPD Beats Down American Citizens (Video) *Mayor Bloomberg evicts Occupy Wall Street peaceable assembly*

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New York City Mayor Bloomberg deploys the NYPD to crack down and crack heads on peaceable assembly of Americans

NYPD Beats Down American Citizens With copied Middle East dictator tactics, patterned after Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg called in the riot police in the middle of the night to forcibly evict a peaceable assembly of American citizens at 1:00 a.m., November 15. Press coverage and video cameras were blocked by the New York City Police Department, under the leadership of NYPD Chief of Police Raymond W. Kelly, utilizing the common tactics of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.

Police Force Without Accountability Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Police Chief Raymond W. Kelly could then apply force at-will without accountability, a favored tactic of the Iranian Ayatollah and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Personal possessions of American citizens were seized and books were burned, similar to the actions of former Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, in an effort to suppress the rights of USA citizens. This was also a cleansing procedure of the German Nazis in the 1930s and 1940s under the leadership of Fuhrer Adolf Hitler and Gestapo (German secret state police) Chief Heinrich Himmler. At the United States federal level, the President, Congress, and Supreme Court, were idle and inactive as Mayor Bloomberg and Police Chief Kelly suspended and violated the Bill of Rights established by the USA Founding Fathers.

Worldwide Human Rights Suppression Similar actions are being implemented worldwide in dictatorships and self-described western democracies as citizens of the world are being told, by police and military force, that 1) they have no rights or redress and 2) injustices will continue unanswered as affluent and corporate interests have control. Italian Prime Minister and Fascist leader Benito Mussolini noted in the 1930s and 1940s, "Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power." and "All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state."

Occupy Wall Street Encampment Destroyed, Cops Clear Zuccotti Park A large truck with items from Zuccotti Park drives away as New York City officials clear the 'Occupy Wall Street' protest from the park in the early morning hours of November 15, 2011 in New York. Occupy Wall Street protesters have clashed with police in Zuccotti Park after being ordered to leave their longtime encampment in New York. At least 70 people have been arrested, with the police said to have used pepper spray. Meanwhile, City Council member Ydanis Rodriguez, 51, has reportedly been beaten by the NYPD and is bleeding from the head.


New York's so-called Finest ready to crack heads of peaceably assembled Americans

About the New York General Assembly The New York General Assembly (The NYC General Assembly) is composed of dozens of groups working together to organize and set the vision for the #occupywallstreet movement. New York City General Assemblies are an open, participatory and horizontally organized process through which we are building the capacity to constitute ourselves in public as autonomous collective forces within and against the constant crises of our times. Please read the Principles of Solidarity working draft. To find out more about recent items presented at the General Assembly, please read the General Assembly minutes. Interested in starting your own General Assembly in your area? Here is a Quick Guide to starting a General Assembly from Takethesquare.net.

About Occupy Wall Street Occupy Wall Street is leaderless resistance movement with people of many colors, genders and political persuasions. The one thing we all have in common is that We Are The 99% that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1%. We are using the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic to achieve our ends and encourage the use of nonviolence to maximize the safety of all participants. This #ows movement empowers real people to create real change from the bottom up. We want to see a general assembly in every backyard, on every street corner because we don't need Wall Street and we don't need politicians to build a better society.

About OccupyWallStreet.org OccupyWallSt.org is the unofficial de facto online resource for the ongoing protests happening on Wall Street. We are an affinity group committed to doing technical support work for resistance movements. We are not affiliated with Adbusters, anonymous or any other organization.  Occupy Wall Street is a people-powered movement that began on September 17, 2011 in Liberty Square in Manhattan’s Financial District, and has spread to over 100 cities in the United States and actions in over 1,500 cities globally. #OWS is fighting back against the corrosive power of major banks and multinational corporations over the democratic process, and the role of Wall Street in creating an economic collapse that has caused the greatest recession in generations. The movement is inspired by popular uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia, and aims to expose how the richest 1% of people are writing the rules of an unfair global economy that is foreclosing on our future. Occupy Wall Street is a horizontally organized resistance movement employing the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic to restore democracy in America. We use a tool known as a "people's assembly" to facilitate collective decision making in an open, participatory and non-binding manner. We call ours the NYC General Assembly and we welcome people from all colors, genders and beliefs to attend our daily assemblies. To learn more about how you can start a people's assembly to organize your local community to fight back against social injustice, please read this quick guide on group dynamics in people's assemblies.

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Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Greek Debt Song (Music Video) *Merle Hazard's tale of Greece*

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The Greek Debt Song by Merle Hazard and Economizzin

The Greek Debt Song Our favorite country-western money manager, Harvard-trained Nashville econo-crooner Merle Hazard, with his band Economizzin, tell the tale of Greece's fiscal problems.


"The Greek Debt Song" Lyrics
by Merle Hazard
Melody ("Never on a Sunday") by Manos Hadjidakis, Courtesy EMI

Oh yes, the Greeks gave us Pythagoras, and Euclid, and Plato, and other wondrous stuff
But balancing their national budget, their budget, their budget, apparently is tough
They used derivatives from Goldman, from Goldman, from Goldman, expenses to postpone
And had to go to France and Germany, and Germany, and Germany, to get a bailout loan

They borrowed short, at a lower rate
Like the Wall Street brokers, we have grown to hate
And when the markets, get into a funk
They won't buy your paper, if it's rated "junk"

The budget problem of the Greeks, of the Greeks, of the Greeks, are a European pain
I hope it doesn't spread to Portugal, Portugal, Portugal, Italy or Spain
The ECB and IMF, IMF, IMF, have applied their expertise
To keep the European Union, from crumbling, from crumbling, just like feta cheese

Let’s hear a little bouzouki!

And when the markets, get into a funk
They won't buy your paper, if it's rated "junk"

Some say that Greece may drop the Euro, the Euro, the Euro so their products can compete
And if it still is not enough, not enough, not enough, maybe they can sell off Crete.
And if it still is not enough, not enough, not enough, maybe they can sell off Crete!

Related Posts
The Ballad of Diamond Jim (Music Video) *A Too-Big-to-Fail Banker*

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