Alt Left: Communism/Socialism Isn’t the Cause of Latin America’s Problems; It’s the Solution

Transformer: Robert, I was arguing with this libertarian about the vicious cycle of inequality in Latin America and this was his response:

“Land monopoly is the core problem in Central America. Communism is the main reason the problem was not solved.”

I would like your response to his statement please. I personally disagree with his statement.

I think the reason the problem is not solved is because of a deeply poisonous rightwing reactionary elite as well as backward cultural traditions and attitudes that are obstacles to genuine land reform. Moreover, I think American foreign policy support for the rightwing oligarchy as well as the CIA aligning with these interest to overthrow democratic governments that try to correct the problem is a huge obstacle also.

Here.

I am not a supporter of Communism, and I think it is a far leftwing version of far rightwing libertarianism that you write about. Like you, I believe a free market economy with sensible regulations and a social safety net is the best solution. Pure capitalism and pure socialism are both two sides of the same coin.

My response: Sure, he’s wrong. That’s another one of their fake arguments. What the Hell is “land monopoly?” Your arguments of the cause of the problem are absolutely spot on perfect. That’s exactly the cause of all the mess right there in a small paragraph.

First of all, Communism barely exists in Latin America (only Cuba is Communist) so how in the Hell could it be the cause of all of the problems down there? This Libertarian is incoherent and dishonest, like all of them. He’s not only got the wrong cure, but like most rightwingers, he’s not even diagnosing the illness properly. All physicians know that without diagnosis there can be no treatment. As in medicine, so in political economy.

Communism especially of the Chinese variety would work very well down there. The Sandinistas, Evo Morales Movement Towards Socialism, Correa in Ecuador, the Worker’s Party (PT) government in Brazil, Father Aristide in Haiti, AMLO in Mexico, the FMLN government in El Salvador, the Kirchners in Argentina, and the priest who was running the Left government in Paraguay were all on the right track.

I also like very much what the Chavistas are doing in Venezuela. It’s not Communism at all. It’s something completely different, Socialism of the 21st Century. It also works very well when it’s not being sabotaged. Even with continuous coup-mongering and sabotage by the fascist opposition, the Chavistas had great success for many years.

Yes, it’s crashed now because the fascists and the US have really upped the ante. This time they think they can finally pull off the coup they have been trying to have for 18 years now. Yes, things are very bad in Venezuela now, and there are various reasons for that, but it’s not the model that is the problem. The model is the same as Chavez’ very successful one.

Not only that, but Maduro has gone much to the right of Chavez. He keeps caving in to the  fascists and putting in their proposals, but they keep trying  to overthrow him with a coup anyway. He’s being played. He needs to stop talking to the coupmongers. According to the insane law of cause and effect the right claims here, it must be the rightwing economic reforms Maduro has done that has crashed the economy. See how dumb it is to mess around with cause and effect. Just because to events parallel each other doesn’t mean they are causing each other.

The economy is crashing due to manipulation of the monetary system, some dumb mistakes by Maduro (not floating the currency), low oil prices, and lately US sanctions which are now nearly a blockade.

I also think the Cuban model has worked very well down there. The Sandinista model, to the right of both the Cuban and Venezuelan models, works extremely well. The instability recently was due to a violent coup attempt by the fascist opposition. Now they are under sanctions, so that might be hurting them too.

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Alt Left: Where Rightwing Economics Pushes Too Far (Always), There Inevitably Arises A Left Revolutionary Backlash

Of course in a number of places like Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, Honduras, Ecuador the revolution was overthrown by mostly illegal means, but the Left is still very powerful in all of these places and no one likes the new rulers. Everywhere in Latin America where the Right is in power, the people are wretched if not up in literal arms. Nobody wants rightwing governments down there anymore. As we have seen in recent years pace Milton Friedman, rightwing regimes in Latin America can only be imposed by force anymore. The people have been lied to too many times and no one believes the rightwingers anymore.

The places that didn’t have one like Colombia, Peru, and Chile either have an armed Left or mass riots.

They almost had one in the UK. They had one in Greece, but the Left sold out.

They had one recently in Indonesia, and there may be one in the process in the Philippines.

Thailand had an aborted revolution via the Red Shirts, but it was thwarted.

They had a revolution in Nepal, but it was thwarted by the state putting in fake Communists.

The rest of the world is already more or less socialist so there’s no need for a revolution!

The Arab World, Central Asia, Africa, and most of Europe are already socialist, so there’s nothing to change.

The “rightwing populist” leaders coming to power in Russia, Poland, and Hungary are all socialists! Over there even the Right are socialist.

Neoliberal rightwing economics is dead all over the world, though its corpse is stirring violently.

Rightwing economics is only in power in the Baltics, parts of Latin America (Colombia, Ecuador, Honduras, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, and Peru), the Caribbean (Haiti and the Dominican Republic), and the Philippines. It is unpopular in Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Chile, and Honduras. Peru is more stable, but there are constant labor riots led by unions, and there remains an armed Left in the mountains. It is unpopular in Haiti and I don’t understand DR politics. Where the Left remains in power as in Venezuela and Nicaragua, it has 70-80% support.

Hong Kong and Singapore are the Libertarian showcases, but neither is sustainable because they cannot be replicated worldwide, as all of their wealth is dependent on massive exploitation of the poorer countries and even surrounding areas. Housing is completely unaffordable for workers in both places as in all Libertarian countries. And Hong Kong is undergoing a revolution from the Left, as it is going Communist.

India is going neoliberal but they are doing via religion, so the foolish Hindus have had the blinders put over their eyes and are supporting it like the superstitious pinheads they are. Meanwhile India remains a socialist country as stated in its own Constitution, and where that lie has become too obvious, there is a Maoist revolution in the hinterlands to set things right.

Singapore is not as Libertarian as it seems. The state owns all land and almost all of the housing is public housing. National health care exists but it is a very poor model. A pro-Chinese Communist Party leftwing opposition party with Marxist roots is very popular. So as we can see, even the showcases are undergoing revolutionary reactions. There’s really no way around this. As rightwing reaction grows extreme, and equal and  opposite leftwing reaction forms in opposition to it. For every reaction there is an equal and opposite reaction. It’s social science, but it may as well be physics, n’est pas?

Can the whole world become Singapore and Hong Kong? Well, of course not. Singapore and Hong Kong are only rich because so much of the rest of the world is poor. The Third World makes $1/hour so the Singaporeans and Hong Kongers can drive BMW’s. Is this really so hard to figure out.

We can’t all be rich, you know? It would be like Lake Wobegon, where everyone is above average. It’s like saying the whole world could become the British Empire. It’s not even possible. Or it would be like having footraces where everyone comes in tied and there are no winners or losers. How likely is that to happen? 0% likely. It’s not even statistically possible, so it fails even as a mathematical proof. Physics envy? Not so fast, now. The social sciences are not as soft as people think. Laws and theorems can exist outside of a math classroom.

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Alt Left: Socialism, Communism and Neoliberalism in High and Low-IQ Societies

Clavdius Americanvs: I don’t believe socialism is necessarily better for low-IQ societies, but it definitely helps redistribute the misery so things are more bearable for the general populace.

Socialism and even Communism is always better for low-IQ countries. There’s not even any debate about it. I suppose you can say that neoliberalism functions somewhat in the West, but it doesn’t work at all in low-IQ countries. It’s just fails spectacularly, however, the top 20% of the population does make out well.

Clavdius Americanvs: I really don’t think socialism at the moment is a great idea for low-IQ countries. But it can arise if the ruling capitalist class is entrenched old money and not very permeable. Latin America used to have a race-based CASTE system for Christ’s sake! Entrenched old money isn’t really capitalist at all – it’s feudalism masquerading as a free market. I don’t believe Latin America is capable of anything else.

Well this is all neoliberal capitalism ever turns into – something that looks a lot like feudalism. Libertarians can’t figure out this law of capitalism and keep pining for this just and proper pure capitalism that never exists. Take the non-aggression principle. They can’t figure out that aggression is at the very heart of capitalism. No aggression, no capitalism.

Will capitalist countries ever allow socialist or communist countries to exist? Of course not. They try to overthrow them, often with violence, as soon as they show up. In the US, overthrowing socialist and even social democratic countries is a bipartisan affair, with even left Democrats like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders joining in with glee. Ocasio-Cortez is right. The Democratic Party is a center-right party and we don’t have a left party in the US. When was the last time? Henry Wallace? How did that work out? A party coup that put Truman in instead.

Clavdius Americanvs: I foresee any regime, even a socialist one, to eventually become feudal simply with a new ruling class not descended from the old one.

Probably not and it never happened in any Communist countries that I can think of. Many social democratic countries simply went corrupt and put the old ruling class in and continued calling themselves socialists. This happened in Venezuela, Peru, and Mexico.

Down in Latin America even the rightwing parties often call themselves socialists or have leftwing words like Labor, Liberal, Progressive, People’s, Popular, Workers, Revolutionary, etc. in their names because that’s often the only way to get elected. Rightwing parties down there even campaign on leftwing themes. All rightwing parties down there, even the death squad parties, campaign on helping the poor and alleviating poverty. Of course they never do it, but they have to say it or they won’t have a chance.

Clavdius Americanvs: The only hope is a secular rise in IQ for the countries so they can all produce more under capitalism.

I don’t think that will work either. The highest IQ countries are either Communist or “National Socialist” as in South Korea and Japan. I’m not sure what Taiwan is. Hong Kong is about ready to go Communist. Vietnam is Communist. All of Europe is nominally socialist or social democratic. It doesn’t look like even high-IQ countries want neoliberalism. Now if you talk about a market instead of “capitalism,” we can talk. After all, I am a socialist and I support a market myself.

Clavdius Americanvs: Afterwards, they can go the European route and turn into social democracies when they can afford it.

No one goes this route anymore – capitalism -> social democracy. Obviously the US is headed that way and Europe formerly did, as did Indonesia, with the Philippines heading that way slowly. And almost all poor countries nowadays are socialist or social democracies in name if not in form. No poor country wants to start out capitalist anymore. Neoliberalism is a luxury good, only affordable by the rich.

Clavdius Americanvs: Only with higher average IQ’s can entrenched ruling classes be otherthrown.

What happened in Ethiopia, Nicaragua, Grenada, Laos, Cambodia, Eritrea, South Yemen, and Cuba?

Clavdius Americanvs: A population needs to be smart enough to produce and become aware of its social contract with the government. I doubt most leftwing participants in Latin America or any low IQ country really understand what they are signing up for in terms of a social contract.

Of course they do. Why do you think they all vote for the Left. Even at this late date, 70% of Venezuelans say they are Chavistas. They can see with their very own eyes what they got with Chavismo. They’re not dumb. Same thing in Nicaragua. The Sandinistas have 70-80% support. Lavalas in Haiti won with 92% of the vote.

Clavdius Americanvs: Low-IQ peasants just don’t want to starve or be beaten by armed thugs of their aristocratic overlords. They are somewhat aware of what they can get, but have no clue as to what they are giving up.

What they are giving up never worked for them anyway and probably never will.

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Alt Left: US-Style Individualistic (Laissez Faire Neoliberal or Neoclassical) Economics Tends to Fail Most Everywhere Outside the US Because Everyone Hates It

The only country in Latin America where an actual US-style neoliberal system took hold along with the typical class-cucked citizenry that goes along with it is Chile, and the neoliberalism had to be put in at gunpoint by a vicious dictatorship that murdered 15,000 Chileans after a CIA coup overthrew the Democratically elected Marxist government of Salvador Allende.

Neoliberal scholars such as Milton Friedman said that neoliberalism in these places would always have to be enforced at gunpoint by a rightwing dictatorship because otherwise a majority would never vote for it. The admission that a majority would never vote for such a system ought to be a profound tell – how good could this system be if no majority in these parts of the world would ever vote for it?

After Pinochet left, the neoliberal culture continued, but really it only infected the upper 1/3 of the population who benefited from Pinochetism, while the lower 2/3 hated it.

Chile to this day remains one of the most unequal countries on Earth with class conflict and hatred so thick that it breaks out into street violence all the time. In recent months the country has been shaken by leftwing insurrectionist riots against the rightwing government, a logical outcome, but it was already like this somewhat for 30 years after Pinochet left. Chile is a place like the Philippines where the classes hate each other so much that they pretty much want each other dead, literally. The class hate is so thick you can cut it with a knife.

Neoliberalism also caught on somewhat in the UK under Thatcher and later Conservative governments, probably the closest to a US rightwing style government on Earth. Even long after Thatcher left, she caused such cultural change that the top 1/3 of the population went over to neoliberalism.

The bottom 2/3 of course did not (see Chile above – a 1/3 benefit, 2/3 are harmed equation is typical of neoliberalism), and Thatcher was burned in effigy amidst violent riots in the poorer urban areas when she died.

Thatcher was also an extreme anti-environmentalist, and it is not yet known if the Earth accepted or rejected her body when it was placed inside of its body. One wondered the same thing about Reagan, the vicious anti-environmentalist. When he died, I wondered, “Will the Earth even accept his body when it is interred?”

Neoliberalism caught on in Ireland, where it did the usual damage. It’s not known why the population opted for this.

It caught on in the Baltics because they hate Russia and Communism so much that they are almost psychotic. Of course, like all such people, the Baltics tend to be quite fascist. In an extreme reaction against anything slightly smelling of Communism, including the mildest forms of socialism, the Baltics went to extreme neoliberalism in a knee-jerk, unthinking way.

The more neoliberal a country was the more it got ruined by the 2008 economic crash (and the more socialist it was – like China – the more it was protected), and the Baltics were devastated by the crash. Latvia was hit worst of all. 1/3 of the population fled its ruined economy, including almost all of the educated and skilled classes. Latvia remains in neoliberal ruins to this day.

Russia went neoliberal under Yeltsin, who opened fire on the nation’s Parliament when it defied him, murdering 600 people, including many legislators. In 1996, the Communist Party actually won the election, but Yeltsin stole it with the help of the US and suitcases literally packed with cash.

Russia was stripped bare and sold for 10 cents on the dollar to the worst capitalists, mostly of a (((certain type))) with the help of bankers in Germany and in the the US, where a (((certain type of people))) also delighted in the looting of their ancient enemy (see (((Jeffrey Sachs))) and (((the Chicago Boys))), back for another round after the Chile debacle), 15 million people died premature deaths. and the nation’s paternity stolen by a (((venal capitalist ruling class))) that was indistinguishable from (((Organized Crime))).

The huge reaction against the neoliberal rape of the land was the main thing that brought the nationalist Putin into power to try to repair the damage and heal the rape victim.

Neoliberalism has been imposed in Europe and many other parts of the world via austerity via bankers and the IMF and the World Bank, but austerity was hated everywhere it was put in – in Europe, Latin America, the Arab World, and even in Africa – and it caused mass riots and even the overthrow of quite a few governments everywhere it was imposed. It was the violent reaction to this austerity that directly led to the Pink Tide in Latin America that US bipartisan foreign policy has now rolled back.

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Alt Left: Conservatism (Neoliberalism) Tends Towards Fascism Almost as a Mathematical Law of Political Science

Conservatism tends to always dissolve into fascism. Show me anywhere on Earth where conservatism, especially conservative, neoliberal economics has been sustainable? It’s not. If it were sustainable it would not have to go fascist but neoliberalism and its monstrous 3rd World cousin is never sustainable? Why? Because despite conservative lies, neoliberalism is generally shit for the lower 80% of the population. Under neoliberalism, the top 20% get richer, usually a lot richer and the bottom 80% lose money. And this setup never changes.

Neoliberalism always causes a crisis or a crash sooner of later (see the 2008 Crash, caused 100% by neoliberalism). It was in fact a Neoliberal Crash, like most economic crashes. This 2020 Crash in the US has been caused by the Coronavirus, but US neoliberalism has made it so much worse.

Furthermore, since neoliberalism is without fail horrible for the bottom 80% of the population by its nature, it always engenders a Left backlash.

Except in places that have already had some sort of a revolution and social contract has been reached, neoliberalism will often put up a huge fight against any threat from the Left at all. The less the regime tolerates the Left, the more radical and extreme the Left gets because extreme conservatism tends to cause extreme Leftism via a law of nature, sort of like a scale that must be balanced or better yet, the Balance of Nature itself.

Pretty soon you’ve got Latin America or even Southern Europe, where the Left is socialist or Communist and the Right is fascist, with little in between. This tends to be the case especially in Catholic countries because Catholic countries tend towards collectivism and tend to despise individualism, which is itself only a product of Protestantism. See Weber on that. He’s immaculate.

In  a collectivist society, all political movements are collectivist. Left collectivism is always socialism or Communism. Right collectivism is always fascism. So in these Catholic societies you tend to end up with Socialists/Communists versus Fascists, in other words, a chronically violent tinderbox in which both Left and Right will tend to get more authoritarian because that’s the only option left to you in a place like that.

Democracy’s not sustainable in an environment like that. In a place like that, democracy just means a lot of unrest, often violent, and eventually the overthrow, violent or otherwise, of your government, lawfully elected or not. Most governments don’t want to get violently overthrown, so in order not to do so, they have to become less democratic.

Fascism is properly seen as a rightwing revolutionary movement of capitalism that rises due to a threat from the Left. Fascism is a palingenetic popular dictatorship against the Left. Therefore, there cannot be any Left fascism. If it’s on the Left, it’s not fascism. Period. And fascism, being a popular dictatorship against the Left, is necessarily not particularly socialist or great for workers. Why would it be? Why would a popular dictatorship against the Left institute leftwing policies?

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Alt Left: The Worthlessness of the Western Left (Liberals and Social Democrats)

The Western Left is pathetic. Most of the Western Left is completely reactionary on US foreign policy. They’re almost completely worthless. I am thinking here of social democracy in the West, especially in Europe but also in the US.

The WOLA (Washington Office on Latin America) liberals are horrific, supporters of murderous US imperialism and fascist and rightwing authoritarian regimes. Really all liberals in the West are monsters because they all support genocidal Western imperialism and fascist and rightwing authoritarian regimes abroad.

Liberals are horrendous everywhere, in the US case, it’s liberal Democrats, a phrase which makes me want to spit every time I utter it because there’s nothing liberal about them. I have more respect for conservatives, reactionaries and Libertarians. At least they are true to their values. Liberal Democrats are the scum of the Earth. They talk the talk but they don’t walk the walk.

In the US, even the socialists (social democrats) are awful. The (((Jacobin))) crowd which is the DSA, is horrific on foreign policy, probably for (((that reason))). (((Those people))) in the West are absolutely vicious, murderous, genocidal imperialists out to use the US military to help their (((ethnic group’s corporations))). (((Those people are rich))) and their foreign policy is to work for (((the rich))).

Not that rich and corporate Gentiles are any better.  They’re usually worse. See Trump and those slimeballs around him, now openly fascist? That’s what the rich and corporate Gentiles are like. I’d rather be ruled by rich Jews than by rich Gentiles, assuming I have to be ruled by the rich, which I don’t have much choice of as this is a capitalist country.

The World Socialist Website, run by Western Trotskyites, is also starting to have serious ideological problems. You think that could have anything to do with (((their funders)))? If you want to buy off the Left, just fund them. It’s simple. They never have any money anyway since capital despises them and workers have no money, so they are very susceptible to being bought off.

Liberal human rights organizations in the West are monstrous. That includes the billionaire-funded Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, truly pathetic and wicked handmaidens of US foreign policy and imperialism. Those “human rights” organizations are just carrying water for their billionaire funders.

It just so happens that according the human rights industry, every Left government on Earth mysteriously has a “human rights” and “democracy” problem. Of course the rightwing governments don’t. The two organizations above actually cheered on the brutally racist fascist coup in Bolivia.

The US human rights industry is fascist in that they support fascism, but in the West, almost everything is fascist in that sense. All aspects of Western society have supported fascism and rightwing authoritarianism (same thing) for a hundred years. Those countries were not fascists or rightwing authoritarians themselves, but they supported them because they were good for business.

The “Left” in the West is pure imperialist. They’re 100% down with US and Western imperialism. I am thinking that if you support Western imperialism, you are not on the Left. Not any Left I would want to be a part of.

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Alt Left: A Vignette of the Reasons for the Colombian Civil War

Claudius: How do you define working well? What distinguishes the top category from the bottom? Is present-day Colombia really worse off than Mexico?

Yes. Colombia is much worse than Mexico in our view. Colombia is so fucked up that they murder one civilian every other day or so. It’s deadly to be on the Left in Colombia. Colombia exists for the rich and only for the rich. Why do you think the Left took up arms?

The state has failed in Colombia. Genocidal fascists took over or maybe were running things all along. They never even did a land reform! There is no state in Colombia. Just an army and police structure that exists to support the rich and their dictatorship over the people.

Let me give you an example.

I read about a rural area in Colombia recently. The rightwing death squads (the government) rampaged through the area and confiscated all of the farmers of the small farmers. Just stole them at gunpoint. This goes on all over Colombia all the time. The rich own a lot of the land, but they never own enough, so they are always trying to steal more. A very similar situation was going on in Guatemala and especially El Salvador and was the direct cause of the revolutions there. The Colombian rich already steal every nickel in the country, but that’s not enough.  They have to steal even more. At gunpoint.

Any farmers who resisted would be beaten, tortured, arrested, imprisoned, or simply murdered. The state worked hand in hand with the death squads which are just the private armies of the rich. Really the police and the military are just the private armies of the rich too. Leaders and members of farmers’ and peasants’ associations got the same treatment above, usually worse. Many were simply murdered, especially the former. This was a slow process (it always is) but over 10-15 years,  the rich had taken over all the land and added it to their latifundias.

More than anything else, Colombia needs a land reform (one could argue that this is the basic underlying cause of the armed Left revolution in Colombia) but the Colombian rich will do anything to stop it, even kill hundreds of thousands of people as D’Aubussion suggested in El Salvador (200,000 in his case to prevent land reform or “socialism” as he called it).

All of the peasants shoved off the countryside moved into nearby large cities. All of these cities quickly developed large slums if they didn’t have them already. The slums were made up on displaced peasants, now relegated to proletarianism in the city. If you study Marx this is a classic method for the development of capitalism, and it is in fact how capitalism developed in England.

Back to Colombia. The seething slums lack water (water must be purchased on large containers in the city below and then carted back to the house), power, sewage systems (the sewage runs downhill in the gutters) or much of anything. The Colombian state of course does absolutely nothing for these people as they don’t want to part with any of the money of the rich to do so. A mysterious crime wave develops in the new slums and the US media is puzzled by what could possibly have caused this strange new crime wave.

In the slums, urban Communist guerrilla cells begin to form. One day you are shocked to see a 12 year old boy walking down a steep street in the slum.

“That’s it,” you think, “The revolution has finally come. I’m outa here!”

You had always known it was building because in a situation like this, how can a Communist revolution not develop? A Communist revolution is almost guaranteed in a situation like this.

There are still plots in the countryside owned by farmers. Guerrillas now invade the abandoned areas and take over a lot of the towns.

“We are the army of the poor,” say the guerrillas. “We are here to protect you from the rich, the death squads, the army, the police, and the state.”

The townspeople are happy to see them. Guerrillas in full uniform walk down the streets of these towns like it’s nothing. There are guerrilla checkpoints all over the countryside at the entrance to every town. The guerrillas recruit in the towns and many of the young people who saw their parents, siblings and relatives brutally thrown off the land or better yet murdered join the guerrilla, mostly out of sense of vengeance.

At night, armed guerrillas show up in  large forces at the haciendas of the rich, living on land stolen from the peasants.

“Hello,” the guerrillas say. “We are here to collect war taxes for the revolution.”

“But I don’t support the revolution, the landowner says.

“No matter,” say the guerrillas, “The country needs a  revolution, it is having one, it needs to be funded, and as a wealthy man, you are obligated to support the revolution. And if you don’t, we will arrest and incarcerate you for tax evasion or if you prefer kidnap you and hold you for ransom.

The rich landowner agrees. Once a year he and his rich neighbors drive to spots in the countryside where they meet bands of guerrillas. All of this is done in secretly. There they hand over war taxes for the year. Those that do not pay are kidnapped for ransom, but the guerrillas say they are just being arrested and imprisoned for tax evasion and will be released on payment of taxes.

Most just pay their taxes to keep the guerrilla off the land so they can live in peace. A few hold out, refuse to pay taxes, and are kidnapped for ransom. The rich usually pay to free their people, but the offspring of these rich men are furious at these taxes and kidnappings. They move to the city and become part of the fascist Right. Some even join the death squads to “kill the Communists.” If you ask them why they joined the fascist Right, they will say, “Well, it all started when the guerrillas kidnapped my father for  ransom. At that point, I had finally had enough of them. We need to exterminate these delinquents with a heavy hand!

Outside the city there is a military checkpoint. This is symbolic. It is there to keep the landless peasants in the slums holed up in the slums so they don’t try to take their property back. There are army checkpoints at the entrances of every city in the area. The military checkpoints start to be attacked by mysterious guerrillas who seem to appear out of nowhere, and the army takes casualties.

Interactions between the local urban poor and countryside peasants become at these checkpoints become increasingly hostile, as the soldiers suspect with good reason that these people are supporting and harboring guerrillas in the areas where they live. New death squads form in the cities, slowly murdering and torturing to death random poor people and especially leaders of community organizations which they army had now labeled as organizations of the guerrillas. In fact, a lot of them are the unarmed aboveground formation of the guerrillas.

Death squads return to the countryside, now picking off random peasants and leaders of community organizations on the basis of support for the guerrillas. In most cases it’s true. The people killed do in fact support the guerrillas. Hell, just about everyone out here does. The few that don’t are suspected to be army and police spies and are closely watched. Occasionally the guerrillas execute one of these people for the crime of spying for the enemy. In fact, they were usually doing just that, spying on the guerrillas for the army.

Intelligence shows that the guerrillas are coming from the urban slums and countryside towns, which are now full of guerrillas.

Back at intelligence headquarters, urban guerrillas have infiltrated this military structure and are busy giving fake intelligence to the army and especially telling the guerrillas what  the intelligence knows and about any upcoming operations.

The army launches operations only to find nothing but peasants and small towns full of civilians without a guerrilla in sight when in fact the guerrillas were seen everywhere there a few days ago. It is as if the guerrillas had vanished into thin air.

The army begins to suspect that the guerrillas always seem to be one step above them and seem to have precognition about the army’s behavior. The army suspects spies in its midst and conducts internal sweeps but finds nothing. Commanders grow increasingly frustrated and angry and begin to take it out on the locals in the guerrilla zones.

The officers look up and the cloud-covered jungle mountains surrounding the area of their operation and begin to wonder if the guerrillas are up there somewhere, hiding in the misty rainforest.

They are correct. That is exactly where the guerrillas are. Difficult operations are launched in these jungle mountains of Colombia but nothing is found. Soldiers get injured, bitten by insects, and come down with strange diseases during these jungle operations.

The operations end and the army retreats back to the valley. Now not just officers but rank and file soldiers are getting even more angry, and they take it out even more on the locals. Down in the valleys, mysterious new guerrilla formations with names no one has heard of seem to show up out of nowhere in response to the army’s abuse of the civilians. These formations start attacking the army, and the army takes casualties. The soldiers get even more furious and take it out on the people even more.

After every crackdown on civilians, more and even more young people join the  guerrillas. When asked why they join, they say,

Well it all started when the army invaded our home and killed my father at his dinner meal. He was a simple peasant. He wasn’t part of any armed guerrilla. I am here to get my revenge.

In some areas, deals are cut with the rebels. The army gets to control the city below but the guerrillas get to the control the towns above eight miles up the road. This is exactly where the guerrilla checkpoints start. In the other direction as you head towards the valley, army checkpoints start. The army and the guerrilla have cut a deal to let each control a bit of territory on the basis that they sign a ceasefire and stop killing each other. After a while of this, the army starts running short of weapons. It turns out a number of officers have been selling the army’s weapons to the guerrillas.

The revolution in Colombia has many causes but this is a good overview of some the main issues that are driving this civil war more than anything else. At the end of the day, it’s just another fight over land and bread. Ever heard that one before?

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Alt Left: Your Enemy Doesn’t Exist? Create Him! Your Enemy is a Nice Guy? Force Him to Act Bad!

Jason: There’s not much the small can do but be a bitch of the strong, and the Cubans figured Russia was way nicer to get along with and far away enough.

Sure, what are you going to do? Keep kissing your enemy’s feet and pleading with him to be nice or tell him to fuck off and go ally with anyone else, even his worst enemy if the new guy is offering the peace pipe at a ridiculous discount? Humans aren’t stupid.

I can’t believe we blame Castro for going Commie. We pretty much shove Castro into Communism. By the way, we did that to a lot of places. You want to demonize someone but they don’t act bad yet? Simple. Deviously manipulate them to make them act bad and turn them into your enemy.

All shitty countries and people do this. The US, Israel, Turkey, the Gulf Arabs, the EU, the Latin American Right, and fascists and capitalists (same thing) in general name it. If your enemy doesn’t exist, fucking create him, dammit! If your enemy acts good, force him to act bad, dammit!

And then in your shitty controlled propaganda media, demonize your newly created enemy as your enemy, meaning he is out to screw you, and watch the hundreds of millions of Normietards eat it right up. The biggest joke in the whole world is that human beings are smart. LOL! Come on. If we were really as brilliant as we crow that we are, there is no way that we would ever fall for this nakedly and embarrassingly transparent dishonesty, but nope, we fall for it all the time.

An intelligent species is relatively inoculated against most basic scams on the account of its brains alone. Obviously we ain’t very smart at all if we can’t think our way out of these scams on our minds. I think that is why they are trying to shut down the Dissident Net.

The Dissident Net is tearing away the curtain, revealing the wizard at the helm as nothing but a scam artist, and is showing that the emperor’s arguments in his state and media are as naked as his garb. The Dissident Net is showing Westerners how to think. Since we absolutely do not have any sort of freedom of press at all in the West, this is the only thing that they fear more than anything else: the day their propaganda just doesn’t work anymore.

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Alt Left: “CIA Installed Dictatorship Replaces Democracy in Bolivia,” by Stephen Lendman

If you have been paying attention, there has been a fascist coup sponsored by the US of course (CIA) in Bolivia. The two point men for the fascist coup were Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. The coup was run out of the US Embassy in La Paz. The Western media are all lying like maniacs like they always do.

Background: There has been a presidential election underway in Bolivia. This was the first round, and it featured Maduro, his competitor Mesa, and nine other.

If one party got more than 50% of the vote, they would win the election.

If neither party got more than 50% but one got at least 40% of the vote and ten percentage points more than the other one, the person who got 40% and the ten point lead would win.

If neither party got more than 50% and no one was up by 10 points over the election, the election would go to a final round.

The counting stopped for a day at 85% with Morales ahead by ~8 points. Then it started up again and Morales gained enough votes in the remaining 15% of precints to put him over the 10 point margin. This set off wild, destructive riots all over the country by the opposition who screamed fraud because the last 15 points put Morales over.

Lie #1: Evo Morales, the leftwing leader who won the free and fair election and was removed via a CIA fascist coup, defied the Constitution in running for a fourth term as the Constitution says he can only run for three terms. Keep in mind that he won all three previous elections handily.

There was a ruling that said that Morales could not run for President a fourth time, and Morales appealed that ruling all the way to the Supreme Court. For some reason or other, the Supreme Court ruled that it was constitutional for Morales to run for a fourth term. That’s the official ruling of the court. That’s democracy in action, folks. You can’t blame Morales for that.

It was the Supreme Court’s ruling, not his. Rulings by Supreme Courts anywhere are legitimate and must be followed by all parties. I don’t have any information about whether the Supreme Court is allied with Morales or whether he put pro-Morales people.

But what if he did? Didn’t the Republican Party just in defiance of all tradition stack the Supreme Court in their favor, including stealing a Democratic justice who was appointed by Obama. Can someone tell me why a Supreme Court ruling in any country justifies a fascist coup? Please explain.

Lie #2: It was very suspicious that the counting stopped for a day and then when it started up again, there were enough votes to push Morales over. This smells like fraud. Not true. Bolivia counted the election in precisely the way that the US-supported OAS wanted them to.

This was the OAS-designed system. The OAS system had a preliminary count of 85% of the votes, followed a day later by a final count of the remaining 15% of votes. Just to show you how sleazy the US is, Morales used the counting system demanded by the US, and then when he did just that, the US screamed fraud for using the system that the US itself had designed. Sleazy or what? So the pause in vote counting had a perfectly innocent explanation.

Lie #3: The OAS conducted an investigation of the election that proved electoral fraud by Morales. Not so. The OAS indeed issued a very sleazy report saying that the election was fraudulent, but if you read the report, it presented absolutely no evidence of this fraud whatsoever. It claimed fraud while presenting no evidence of such. Once again, this is typical of how the US acts all over the world all the time, year in and year out. America is one of the sleaziest countries on Earth.

Lie #4: The OAS report proved that it was statistically unlikely that Morales got enough in the final 15% of votes to push him over. Figures don’t lie but liars sure do figure. Once again, not true. Another statistical analysis showed that it was indeed quite likely that Morales got enough votes in the last 15% to push himself over. This is because the last 15% of voting districts consisted heavily of pro-Morales rural districts.

Lie #5: Pre-election polls showed that Morales would not get enough votes to win. Yep, one election poll done by the opposition that found results completely opposite to every other election poll. Actually, election polls were excellent evidence that there was no fraud, but election polls predicted a Morales win by 10 points precisely. Can someone please show me how it is possible for pre-election polls to predict fraud? I’m all ears.

Lie #6: Since Morales committed fraud, there was no choice but for the military to replace him in a coup. Not true. Amidst all the violence and rioting, Morales called for international observers to do a monitored audit or recount of all of the votes. If Morales deliberately committed fraud, why would he ask confidently for a recount.

Lie #7: Morales is a crook. Not so. There have been a number of presidential, constitutional, and legislative elections since Morales came in. Morales has never been proven to have stolen a single vote in any election, so Morales has never engaged in election fraud in the past. One wonders why he would start now. Further, even if Morales only got a 9 point lead (which is a lie), why would he commit fraud? He could just go to a runoff which he would obviously win handily.

Lie #8: The fascist coup was a win for democracy. Many US politicians and all of the US and Western media are proclaiming the fascist coup which overthrew a democratically elected leader in a 100% free and fair election to be a win for democracy. This is typical American lying.

The CIA has overthrown more governments than I can count. It’s always a leftwing government that gets overthrown and it’s always a far right or fascist government that gets installed. Every time the CIA conducts a fascist coup against a democratically elected leftwing leader, US politicians and the entire Western media all scream that this is a victory for democracy.

This is Orwellian. It is also a grotesque abuse of language itself. How are fascist coups that overthrow democratically elected leaders ever victories for democracy? That’s a bizarre doublespeak lie right out of 1984. America specializes in doublespeak and bizarre Orwellian language. That’s what those stars and stripes represent.

I would also like to point out the US (and the rest of the West) are extreme supporters of fascism all over the globe. We supported fascism before WW2 and then we supported it again after WW2.

In fact, WW2 was the only time in our nation’s history that our nation went to war against fascism or rightwing military dictatorships. I guess those particular fascists got a bit out of hand.

Although supporting fascism doesn’t mean that America is a fascist country, we are definitely one of the world’s biggest supporters of fascism and rightwing dictatorships and we have been for 120 years. That flag of yours represents support for fascism for over a century. Are you Americans ok with that? If so, why?

Just to show that this was not a win for democracy, the military installed opposition government is basically a dictatorship. The putschist regime has shut down freedom of the press. The coup government is threatening all pro-Morales journalists with arrests.

In addition, the opposition has been banned from running for office for all time.

Morales has been banned from running for office. On what grounds?

Many members of the MAS, his party, have been placed under arrest. On what charges?

When members of the MAS showed up in the legislature to take their seats, uniformed soldiers prevented them from taking their seats. Why?

Morales’ home, the homes of his relatives, and the homes of many MAS legislators were burned to the ground by the rioters. How on Earth was that justified?

In addition, martial law has been declared in Bolivia and soldiers and police are fanning out through the country, raiding homes of opposition members from east to west, smashing up their homes and arresting opposition party members. How is it that police and the army rampaging all over the land arresting thousands of opposition supporters (on what charges?) could possibly be justified?

This is the “death squad” type crackdown that follows every CIA coup. After the coup, there is typically a “reign of terror” run by the CIA and the fascist coup regime in which significant numbers of opposition supporters are rounded up, arrested, imprisoned, tortured, or out and out murdered. It happened in Guatemala, Haiti, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Honduras, Greece and Turkey.

The reason for this is to make people think: if we elect another leftwing government, there’s going to be another fascist coup followed by a reign of death squad terror in which I might just get killed. See how that works?

That’s democracy?

Ban the opposition party, arrest the lawmakers of the opposition, refuse to let opposition lawmakers seat themselves in the Legislature, burn the homes of the opposition political leaders to the ground, and send security forces all over the land arresting opposition supporters?

That’s how democracy works? According to the Western media, this is democracy in action.

Keep in mind that the opposition seized power when by any accounting, they lost the last election. They either lost it by nine or 10 points, but what difference does it make? They lost.

So the opposition lost by 9-10 points, and the US overthrew the obvious winner of the election and installed the party that lost the election badly. Overthrowing winners of elections and installing losers of elections is a victory for democracy? What the Hell’s the matter with Americans? Why do they fall for these crazy lies?

CIA Installed Dictatorship Replaces Democracy in Bolivia

Evo Morales is Bolivia’s democratically elected and three-times reelected Bolivian president.

In cahoots with Bolivian fascists, military, and police along with US imperial tool Organization of American States (OAS), CIA forces toppled Morales for not subordinating the country’s sovereign rights to US interests.

Morales’ majority Movement for Socialism (MAS) legislators were intimidated and threatened not to interfere with the coup.

In response to the OAS’ Big Lie about electoral fraud (none occurring) Pompeo congratulated the organization for serving US interests over the rights and welfare of Bolivia and its people.

Separately, he thanked self-declared, unelected, illegitimate usurper president Jeanine Anez for “lead(ing) her nation through this democratic transition (sic)” that the Trump regime went all-out to eliminate, with a CIA-installed fascist tyranny replacing it.

An unnamed senior state department official called transition to despotism in Bolivia “a significant moment for…democracy in our hemisphere”, democracy being a notion both extremist right wings of the US one-party state abhor, especially at home.

Anti-Morales Bolivians in the streets post-election, “standing up for (the) legitimacy of their electoral process,” were actually CIA-recruited thugs.

Key Bolivian military and police officials were enlisted to support the coup. At first, majority pro-Morales legislators couldn’t enter parliament because security forces refused to guarantee their safety.

Days later, they formed a legislative quorum, swearing in MP Monico Eva Copa as Senate president and Sergio Choque as lower house Chamber of Deputies president.

Pro-Morales supporters control Bolivia’s Legislative Assembly for now, but that control is tenuous at best without military and police support.

Anez illegally self-declared herself president, breaching the constitutional requirement for a parliamentary quorum to be in session for approval.

She breached articles 161, 169, and 410 of the Constitution.

Article 161 lists the Legislative Assembly’s functions, a quorum required for them to be performed. They include “accept(ing) or reject(ing) the resignation of the president (and) vice president.”

Article 169 states the following:

“In the event of an impediment or definitive absence of the President, he or she shall be replaced by the Vice President and, in the absence of the latter, by the President of the Senate, and in his or her absence by the President of the Chamber of Deputies.

In this last case, new elections shall be called within a maximum period of ninety days…In case of temporary absence, the Vice President shall assume the Presidency for a term not to exceed ninety days.”

Article 410 states:

“Every person, natural and legal, as well as public organs, public functions, and institutions, are subject to the present Constitution…The Constitution is the supreme norm of Bolivian law and enjoys supremacy before any other normative disposition.”

Anez is a US-anointed hard-right political nobody, elected to Bolivia’s Senate in 2014 with 91,895 votes – 1.7% of 5,171,428 ballots cast.

Until the CIA coup, most Bolivians knew little or nothing about her. Telesur noted that “Latin America recorded a new ‘self-swearing’ in coup script that, without a doubt, seems familiar,” adding:

“Violence in the country continues by radical opposition groups that have burned indigenous population symbols.”

“Meanwhile in La Paz, (the country’s political capital) thousands of supporters of Evo Morales are being mobilized in rejection of the coup d’etat and its discriminatory and racist acts.”

Telesur reported, citing Menta Communication’s Luciano Galup, adding:

“Over 4,500 Twitter accounts (were) created to legitimize (the illegitimate) coup (with) almost no followers…These action have scant effect on domestic politics…But worldwide they can function as (pro-coup) propaganda…”

…a way for dictatorships and their sponsors to legitimize what’s illegitimate.

Calling Twitter’s action “a scandal,” Galup noted that 3,612 accounts have “between zero and one followers,” adding:

“(T)he most scandalous thing is there are 4,492 accounts that were created between yesterday and today to participate in the (coup). They created 4,492 accounts in two days.”

Images released support his charges.

On Friday, illegitimate coup d’etat regime communications minister Roxana Lizarraga threatened independent journalists reporting accurately on what’s going with “sedition,” saying:

“Law will be fully enforced against those journalists or pseudo-journalists who are seditious, whether they are nationals or foreigners (sic),” warning:

The (illegitimate) interior ministry is compiling a list of journalists opposed to the coup d’etat regime.

Arrests were made, more likely to follow.

The coup d’etat regime cut diplomatic ties to Venezuela and ordered its embassy staff to leave the country one day after Anez usurped power, likely acting on orders from Washington.

Separately, she warned that if Morales returns to Bolivia, his legal right, he’ll face charges, falsely saying:

“He knows he has to answer to justice (sic). There is an electoral crime (sic). Nobody has thrown him out, but yes, there’s a need for him to respond regarding electoral fraud (sic), in addition to many allegations of corruption (sic).”

Earlier she said her (illegitimate) foreign ministry will file an official complaint with Mexico’s Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s government for granting Morales asylum.

Coup d’etat regime foreign minister Karen Longaric announced Bolivia’s withdrawal from the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), established in 2004 by Venezuela and Cuba, with other regional nations joining the alliance later. The international organization is intended to foster cooperative social, political, and economic integration of Latin American and Caribbean nations.

Large-scale pro-Morales protests continue in La Paz and elsewhere demanding Anez resign and calling for reinstatement of Morales as Bolivia’s legitimate president.

CIA-installed usurpers control Bolivia. Resistance continues. The US got another imperial trophy if its dark forces can keep it — no guarantee given Bolivia’s long history of resisting tyranny.

Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG).

His new book as editor and contributor is titled Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III. http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

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Alt Left: Even the Rich Have to Support Socialism Sometimes

From the Internet:

When the UK went to war in 1914, they discovered that their soldiers were so undernourished and unfit to fight for the Empire, that a series of ‘social reforms’ were enacted to improve the lot of the working class (or cannon fodder).

Actually this is a serious problem in Latin America. There the rich are so selfish and cocky that they won’t even pay for a proper army! When the Peruvian Army was fighting the Shining Path, many didn’t even have proper uniforms or boots. They were often short of ammunition. Soldiers used to man checkpoints to shake down motorists just so they could get money to survive.

You see how cocky and arrogant the rich are? They were so sure that they could defeat the Revolution that refused to even fund an army to fight them! Also note how selfish the rich are. They won’t pay a nickel in taxes for anything, not even for an army to defeat a revolution which would have taken away everything they had!

Looks like the British rich were more sensible than the Peruvian rich. I think it goes to show you that socialism is coming one way or another whether the rich or anyone else likes it or not. That’s more or less one of the laws of Marxism, and if we define socialism as even social democracy or a safety net, it’s obvious that it’s always going to get here one way or another.

The rich always push for total free market economics and getting rid of all safety nets, social democratic programs and even the very state itself (even the army – see above).

According to Marxist laws, the more they move in that direction, the more the rich will get richer and the poor will get poorer, and as the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, inevitably, you end up with some sort of left or socialist like backlash. It’s so consistent that you could indeed call it a law of political science, which is exactly what it is.

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Alt Left: The US: All Guerrillas We Don’t Like Lack Agency and Are Simply Pawns and Puppets of an Enemy State

In guerrilla wars nowadays, all guerrilla groups who the US says are enemies are labeled by the US as being pawns of some dastardly foreign power. The revolutionaries themselves are deprived of all agency and reduced to mere puppets who carry out orders from some large state sponsor. The puppets probably don’t even want to do these attacks! They’re probably being being forced to by their diabolical patrons!

In the Latin American revolutions of recent years, all of the revolutionaries were deprived of agency and reduced to mere puppets, first of Satanic Cuba and ultimately from the Devil itself, the USSR. Of course these revolutions were not started by internal politics, vast differences between the rich and poor, grotesquely unfair systems, murderous death squad states who torture and murder any dissidents on the Left!

Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, and Colombia were all wonderful countries. There weren’t any starving masses living in tin shacks with no water, sewage systems, jobs, or access to medical care, education, transportation or even money to buy food or anything like that!

You see, all the countries got let off the hook, and the US got to say that it wasn’t the horrific conditions inside the far rightwing country that were producing the obvious armed Left guerillas that such states often logically produce. The guerrillas were just idiots, useful ones to be sure, or even puppets on a string. Everything’s fine in these countries, and not one single progressive change needed to be made.

Instead this was just Castro’s Cuba – boo, hiss – exporting revolution to these poor innocent Latin American countries who are trying their best to serve their people! Oh, poor countries! These sad, pathetic, ignorant guerrillas are being made into pawns and puppets of malign Commies against their will! Oh, poor guerillas!

And ultimately of course the revolutions were all coming from the USSR. The motive was always nothing  more than Soviet expansionism. The Soviets were trying to export Communism all over the world to every country, rich and poor, leftwing and right, those who served their people and those who left them to die without a nickel! Bad Soviets! They were so mean!

In other words, all leftwing revolutions had nothing to do with the objective conditions inside the country. They were all caused by the deplorable Soviets exporting their depraved Communism the world over.

By saying that the Houthis are just Iranian puppets, useful idiots, and fools without any gripe who are mercenaries on the payroll of the Iranians, we are saying that conditions are just fine in Yemen, and the Houthis took arms for no reason.

According to the US and various Sunni Arab states in the region, the Houthis are revolutionary pro-Iranian crazies who are trying to take over the country as part of a sneaky Iranian project to take over all of the Arab countries, oppress and lord it over them, steal their resources and leave them penniless, and worst of all, force all of them all to convert to Shiism.

See how this “puppets of X regime” nonsense plays out? It’s usually nothing but a flat-out lie. Most civil wars happen for a reason. What sort of reason? An internal reason based on the objective conditions in that country, conditions that the guerrillas think are wrong or unfair – that’s what reason. Of course guns don’t grow on trees, and most guerrillas need to have state sponsors in order to acquire their weaponry. They have to buy them somewhere.

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The Menace of Trump's Alter Ego Bolsonaro in Brazil

Tulio: Robert, do you have any thoughts on Bolsanaro? Looks like Brazil is about to take a hard right turn toward fascism. Steven Bannon is down there advising him. The thought of that fucker makes me physically ill.

He’s a monster, of course. I had no idea that half of Brazil’s population were reactionary Rightist maniacs. He’s worse than Trump. I have met two Brazilian Rightists and they were out and out monsters. Both absolutely hated democracy. One was a Brazilian Jew and the other is the former commenter Santoculto.
They’re murderous, as bad as the Bolivian, Venezuelan, Salvadoran, and Nicaraguan Right. They’re not as murderous as the Haitian, Guatemalan, Honduran, and Colombian Right, but they definitely kill people. A Black woman who organized in the Brazilian favelas was recently murdered by the Right government that is in power now.
This Bolsonaro had as part of his project putting on trial and executing all of the former armed rebels from the 1960’s. He has the support of the reactionary military in that. Thing is though, the last president was a former urban guerrilla from the 1960’s and her government was full of former guerrillas, so he’s openly advocating the trial and execution of  most of the former government.

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Conservatives Are Murderous and Hate Democracy All over the World and at All Times

The Murderous, Democracy-Hating Latin American Right

The murderousness of the Chilean, Peruvian, Ecuadorian, and Argentine Right is in the past, but you never know when they will spring up again.

  • There was talk on the Argentine Right of calling for a coup when the last president talked about regulating the agricultural sector. They run that country like a mafia and no one dares to touch them. The Argentine Right worked with Wall Street to bankrupt the country and ruin the economy so they could win an election.
  • The Paraguayan Right overthrew the government with a judicial coup.
  • The Ecuadorian Right attempted an armed police coup several years ago.
  • The Peruvian Right staged a coup 25 years ago.
  • The Chilean Right only allowed a weak democracy 18 years ago.
  • The Honduran Right staged a military coup to get rid of a democratically elected president. Since then, death squads have murdered 1,000 people.
  • Aristide was overthrown by US sponsored coup 23 years ago, and they haven’t had any democracy since because Aristide’s party is banned from running. The last time they ran, they won 92% of the vote. After the coup, death squads rampaged through the population, murdering 3,000 members of Aristide’s party.
  • The rightwing Brazilian legislature overthrew the Left government based on a complete lie and they jailed the former president on a completely fake charge based on a bribe that he didn’t even accept! I mean they simply overthrew a democratically elected government with a parliamentary coup. They do this stuff all the time down there with either judicial, parliamentary or military coups.

The Latin American Right hates democracy.
If you wonder why the Left goes authoritarian down there, well, this is what happens if you try to do it democratically. They try to do it democratically, they wage coups and economic wars against you, start terrorist riots destroying you cities, murder the members of your government and political parties, start contra wars, or if they are in power, run death squads and slaughter the members of your parties.
I mean if they block all efforts at peaceful change, why not just put in a Left dictatorship? By the way, this is why Lenin said peaceful efforts towards socialism were doomed to fail because power never surrenders without a fight. He called such efforts parliamentary cretinism. I don’t agree with that, but I see the point.
The main point is that everywhere on Earth, the Right hates democracy and they are determined never to allow any Left governments to take power. Things are a bit different in Europe, North Africa, the Arab World, and Central Asia, but once you start getting over to South Asia, once again, they won’t give it up without a fight.

The Murderous, Democracy-Hating Right in Southeast and East Asia

  • Thailand overthrew a Left government with a judicial coup and the middle class rioters called yellow shirts destroying the country.
  • Indonesia staged a fake coup so they could murder 1 million Communist Party members.
  • The Philippines runs death squads that slaughter the Left.
  • The Taiwanese state consolidated its power after 1949 when they fled to they island by murdering hundreds of thousands of Leftists.
  • South Korea also killed hundreds of thousands of Leftists from 1945-1950 before the Korean War even started.
  • Between 1954-1960, Communists tried to take power peacefully in South Vietnam, but the government murdered 80,000 of them. They kept asking the North Vietnamese for permission to take up arms but it was never granted. Finally, in 1960, Ho gave them permission to take up arms.
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The Dutch Disease, an Economy Depended on Oil Revenues, and Other Problems of the Venezuelan Crisis

Thinking Mouse: What are your thoughts on allegations of mismanagement of resources in Venezuela? Having your government based on a good as volatile in price as oil (and especially when the gringos own and produce most of the oil) seems pretty stupid.

This is called the Dutch Disease and it is the cause of a lot of things including the chronic inflation that country has, which was never as bad as this though.
It’s been going on forever, but the Gulf states are all doing that too. Most oil countries do that. 97% of Venezuela’s income comes from oil. That didn’t change over the Chavez years. On the other hand, the Chavistas talk about it all the time.
There are supposedly efforts underway to develop the economy right now, but I am not sure how successful they are. It is not working to have the business class, aligned with the fascist Right, importing the food and manufactured goods.
NOT working. That’s what is causing the whole economic crisis right there because they started an economic war where they stopped producing a lot of the products that people needed most. However, they kept producing other products just fine.
There was no basis in raw materials to have those shortages in certain products. Those were simply manufactured crises by the business class refusing to import or manufacture various products.
They also hoarded a lot of products too, and they sent many other goods either to Colombia or directly to the black market instead of the real market. 1/3 of all imported goods so straight to Colombia. They do this because they can make more money smuggling to Colombia or selling on the black market.
So the government is saying we need to start making this stuff ourselves or growing and producing it ourselves. The government used to import all this stuff because the business class has been refusing to produce stuff forever, but with the drop in the price of oil (a conspiracy created by the US) the government could not do that anymore, so the crisis developed.
Around when Chavez died, there were two large attacks on the currency which may have exploded the Black market. And the black market is run by a opposition fascist in Louisiana who deliberately monkeys with the black market price of the dollar, jacking it up all the time. So the value of the black market dollar skyrocketed compared to the dollar at its normal exchange rate and this precipitated the whole crisis.
Incidentally, several opposition leaders have openly admitted that they are trying to destroy the economy in order to create a crisis and bring down the government.
The recent US sanctions made things even worse and were designed to make it impossible for Venezuela to get out of the crisis by cutting them off from the international banking system and making it hard for them to get loans and impossible for them to restructure their debt.
The government has needed forever to float the currency to get out of the crisis, but he refused to do that as it is a very difficult political decision to make and it would make a lot of their base mad. So they avoided doing this for years and hence perpetuated the crisis. Recently they created a New Bolivar that is not set on the dollar but is instead set at the price of oil. This is the same thing as floating the currency more or less, so we will see how it works.

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The Success of America's Longstanding Propaganda War Against the Concept of Socialism

Socialism, the very concept, especially in its social democratic and democratic socialist varieties, is the ho-hum status quo on most of the planet.
The war on the very concept of socialism has probably been worse in the US than anywhere else in the West. It has a 3rd World death squad tinpot dictatorship feel about it. I keep wondering when the rightwing death squads are going to show up in the US. They show up everywhere else in states with a US-style reactionary and Left-hating culture.
The difference between the US war on socialism and the war on socialism waged in various death squad democracies is that the war on socialism has been more successful in the US than anywhere else on Earth other than Colombia, but the Left is armed to the teeth there. The war on socialism was just as bad if not worse due to the death squads and all of the imprisonments, beatings, tortures, murders and genocides all over Latin America and in the Philippines and Indonesia.
These countries differ from the US however in that all those Latin American countries and SE Asian countries have gone Left in recent years.
Even in the Philippines, Duterte calls himself a socialist and had friendly relations with the Maoist NPA  guerrillas when he held office in Mindanao.
In Indonesia, the female elected President recently ran on a socialist ticket.
To the south, Mexico has been officially socialist since the Revolution. The Left in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Colombia, Peru, and Argentina was armed to teeth and fought vicious wars against reactionary regimes. That has to count for something.
In El Salvador, the former Left guerrillas are now running the country.
In Honduras, a leftwinger was recently elected President only to be ousted in a coup sponsored by the CIA and Hillary Clinton.
Nicaragua of course had a successful Leftist revolution, and those revolutionaries have been holding office now there for quite some time.
Haiti elected a Leftist in Jean Bertrande Aristide, only to be ousted by Bush Administration officials via a contra death squad army from the Dominican Republic. Aristide himself was arrested at gunpoint in his mansion by armed Blackwater mercenaries acting under the command of the Pentagon.
A number of the island states in the Caribbean have gone Left in recent years and most were members of the Chavista Bolivarian Movement. Most political parties in the Caribbean have words like Left, Socialist, Workers, Progressive, etc. in their party names regardless of their ideology because any party that wants to get anywhere in the Caribbean has to at least dress  itself up in Left garb.
Grenada had a successful Leftist revolution that was subsequently overthrown on illegal grounds by Reagan.
Venezuela of course has been voting Leftist since 1999 when the Chavistas took power. They have never left.
In Ecuador, a Leftist, Rafael Correa, ruled for many years. Recently a man named Lenin Moreno ran on a Leftist ticket of continuing Correa’s Left reforms, but as soon as he got into office, he immediately shifted gears and went hard Right.
Right-wing parties run as fake Leftists all the time in Latin America because generally rightwingers running on a rightwing agenda cannot get elected down there because most Latin Americans hate rightwingers and don’t want them in power. Hence the Right obtains power by contra wars and fascist mob violence in the streets, waging wars on economies and currencies, judicial, legislative, and military coups, and even open fraud.
The definition of conservatism is aristocratic rule. It is the antithesis of rule by the people or democratic rule.
The definition of liberalism is democratic rule by the people, not the aristocrats.
Not many Latin Americans want to be ruled by aristocrats, so the Right down there has to seize power by extra-democratic means.
The Opposition in Venezuela recently ran on an openly social democratic platform, but most people thought it was fake they would turn Right as soon as they got in.
In Brazil, the Left has been running the country for some time under the PT or Worker’s Party until it was removed by a rightwing legislature in an outrageous legislative coup. They even imprisoned a former president, Lula, on fake corruption charges. A female president was recently elected who was an armed urban guerrilla in the 1960’s.
In Paraguay, a Leftist former priest was elected President, only to be removed in an outrageous legislative coup.
In Chile, not only was Leftist Allende elected in the 70’s, the Left was not only armed  all through Pinochet’s rule and once came close to assassinating him. In recent years, a socialist named Michele Bachelet has won a number of elections.
In Bolivia, Leftist Evo Morales has been in power for a long time.
Uruguay recently elected a Leftist, a former armed urban guerrilla in the 1970’s.
Argentina recently elected two Leftist presidents, the Kirchner, a husband and wife. A rightwiger was recently elected after a rightwing Jewish billionaire named Singer obtained a court judgement against Argentina in a US court. That judgement bankrupted the economy, so you could say that the Right destroyed the economy in order to get elected.
So with the exception of Peru, Costa Rica, Panama, and the Guyanas, all other countries have since gone full Left at one time or another recently. Costa Rica’s already a social democracy, and Peru had an ultra-radical murderous Left for a very long time. Panama’s been reactionary since the CIA murdered Omar Torrijos by sabotaging his helicopter and killing him via a fake copter crash. The Dominican Republic and Jamaica have not gone Left since the 60’s and 70’s.
But the war on socialism has been so much more successful here in the US than even in the above named backwards countries because even the world norm of social democracy was so demonized here in the US that it never even got off the ground.
In some ways, the US is one of the most rightwing countries on Earth at least in terms of political economy.
 

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Why Trump Is a Disaster: Latin American Foreign Policy

Zamfir: I’m surprised you have a strong preference for Democrats over Republicans. To me it seems like a hopeless choice. If you vote Republican you’re voting for one set of evil elite interests, but not explicitly against your biology and cultural heritage; if you vote Republican you’re voting for another set of evil elite interests, and explicitly against your biology and cultural heritage.
Hard to pick between those two! What is the real advantage in voting Democrat in your opinion? (I guess I’d vote for Bernie, but then again I’d vote for Trump for similar reasons… Not that I expect either one would ever do much on anything I care about.)

He rolled back our open policy on Cuba, another example of his hatred of the Left. He said Cuba did sonic attacks on our diplomats. It’s a lie. They don’t even understand the technology needed to do something like that.
Trump supported an obviously stolen election in Honduras and the next day directed a lot of foreign aid their way. It’s a death squad dictatorship where the murder the people all the time so the rich can stay in power.
Trump supports Colombia and he has just made Colombia, the most right-wing country on Earth, a member of NATO! It is a death squad dictatorship, the worst one on Earth, that kills the people almost every other day. The rebels disarmed but now the government comes out and murders the people all the time and there’s no way for the people to fight back.

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The Rich Only Support Democracy when the Elected State Serves their Class Interests, Otherwise They Try to Overthrow It

Zamfir: Thanks Robert. I appreciate the site, and it’s nice to feel welcome.
Obviously one problem in discussing this is that terms like ‘left’ and ‘right’ or ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’ have been given all kinds of different meanings. If economic conservatism is identified with free market ideology then I’m pretty ambivalent about that, at best. And if it’s identified with support for whatever this internationalist economic system is that we have now, I’m against it.
I find it very weird that people who are conservative about social and cultural issues often support “economic conservatism” of that kind. It’s so clear that these things are incompatible! Anyway I certainly have no problem with socialism per se. I would only disagree with certain versions, or cases where I believe socialism ends up being destructive of healthy families and cultures (in much the same way that capitalism can be).
As for democracy I’m not sure what I think about it. I think I’m a reactionary to the extent that I don’t believe that democracy, or any other specific system or procedure, is always good or always essential to a good society. My sense is that some democracies or kinds of democracy are fine, while others are really bad. It all depends on some many factors aside from the system or procedure itself.
I do want a society where the interests of most people, including the poor, are taken into account fairly. But I don’t see any reason why that could never happen in a non-democratic state. Or, more precisely, for anything that’s good about some democracies, I don’t see why certain non-democratic regimes couldn’t also have those good things; it would all depend on other factors such as the culture and history of the people, their typical behavior and beliefs, etc.
So I guess I’d support coups against democratic regimes in some cases–though things would have to be pretty bad–and also against non-democratic regimes in some cases. I don’t think coups are always bad. (In fact, that’s one thing that seems silly about a lot of rigid ‘conservative’ ideology–the wish to preserve order and the status quo no matter how terrible it’s become…)
You say the rich don’t support democracy. I wonder if that’s true. Maybe they don’t support the ideal of democracy, for the reasons you mentioned. But, again, bearing in mind the looseness of terminology here, they sure do seem to support systems that we normally call “democratic”. Is the US a democracy in your view?
Are England or Ireland or Canada democracies? If so, then I don’t agree that the rich never want democracy. My sense is that they long ago figured out how to manipulate these kinds of systems to get the results they want. They manage the perceptions and values of the masses so that they always end up “freely choosing” the same garbage that the elites wanted all along.
A good question is whether this is an inevitable feature of democracy. (I don’t know the answer.) It could be that in any feasible form of democracy, no matter how close it gets to the ideal, you end up with powerful interests rigging the process to maximize their own wealth and power. And I don’t like that, because I want the interests of ordinary people to be taken into account. Ironically, then, I’m skeptical about many forms of democracy because I think the masses deserve to have a say.
So I’d be against democracy in cases where ‘democratic’ systems are hijacked by elites and used against the people. That’s what’s happening in most of the western world, I’d say. Not to say I’d support a coup in this situation–and certainly not if the point of the coup was to install an even more extreme form of exploitation. But I’m not entirely sure what to say about democracy. I think the reactionary critique has merit. (But then, don’t communists also criticize democracy for roughly similar reasons?)

The Communist view is that seeking power peacefully would be a great idea except the ruling classes will never allow it to happen. They say that power never gives up without a fight, and I believe that they are correct. Nevertheless, most Communists support Venezuela, Nicaragua and only leftwing democratic countries. But the Communists would say, “Look what happens why you try to take power peacefully. You get Nicaragua, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Paraguay, Honduras, Haiti, and even Argentina.”
The ruling class will just overthrow the democratic Left state any way they can, always using anti-democratic means to do so. That’s why Lenin called people who supported the peaceful road to socialism “parliamentary cretins.” He thought it was a great idea but it would never work because the rich would never allow the Left to take power peacefully.
The Communist view is also that you never have democracy under capitalism anyway, as the capitalists and the rich always ending ruling the state one way or another through all sorts of means. And yes, the rich and the capitalists always take over all the media in any capitalist country as you said, they use it to shape the view of the people to support the class politics of the rich. Such support being called false consciousness.
Gramsci said that the ruling class took over the entire culture in capitalist countries and brainwashed the masses into supporting the project of the rich. They did this via cultural hegemony. Marx said that the culture of the rich is always the popular culture in any capitalist country. So the ruling class turns all of us into “little rich people” or “little capitalists” to support their project. They brainwash us into thinking we are the same class as the rich and that we are all capitalists ourselves, so we should support Capital. These are lies, but most Americans are easily fooled.
Ralph Nader called this “going corporate” or “thinking corporate.” He says that in the US, most people adopt the mindset of the corporations and think of themselves are part of the corporate structure whether they are or not. If everyone is part of the corporate structure, then what’s good for corporations is good for all of us, which is the project of the Republican Party, neoliberalism everywhere, the Latin American rich, etc. It’s a big fat lie, but people want to be rich and a lot of workers want to think of themselves are busy little capitalist money-making, go-getter, can-do, Bossterist entrepreneurs because it seems to cool to own your own business.
And the Communists would call this false consciousness and their argument would be that under capitalism, most people adopt false consciousness.
I think in the US, the rich see the tide coming and the rule of the rich is going to end so they want to lock in as much of the state as possible by stacking the courts, gutting the safety net, massive tax cuts that will be impossible to get rid of, and that Constitutional Convention they are two states away from getting where they want to rewrite the whole US Constitution to lock in rule by the rich for as long as possible. The rich see the writing on the wall. That’s why they came up with the computerized elections scam, so they could steal elections as long as people kept voting against the rich.
The gerrymandering of districts now makes it almost impossible to get rid of Republican majorities on state representatives in the House and in Senators and Assemblymen in the states. It’s all locked in.
So as the rich saw the tide turning and demographics moving against them, they instituted a full court press to do all sorts of extremely anti-democratic stuff to stay in power. If the people would just vote for them anyway, they would not have to do that, but apparently most Americans have now turned away from the politics of the rich, so the rich will have to lie, cheat, and steal to stay in power from now on.
Also they elected Donald Trump, by far the most corrupt, authoritarian and even outright fascist leader this country has ever had. And this follows too. Whenever there is a popular movement against the rich and the capitalists, the rich and the capitalists always, always, always resort of fascism to stay in power. This has been proven endlessly over time, even in Europe. Trotsky had some great things to say about this. Check out “Thermidor.” Trotsky truly understood what fascism was all about. It is a desperate last ditch move by the ruling class to seize power in the face of an uprising from the Left.
The rich and the capitalists are determined to stay in power, by hook or by crook, by any means necessary, and they will lie, cheat, steal and kill as many people as they have to just to keep the Left out of power. They simply will not allow the Left to rule. They must rule and if they are out of  power, they will use any antidemocratic means to get power back.
Which is the story of the CIA, the Pentagon and 100% of US foreign policy since 1945 and even before then. Read Samuel Butler.
I mean, we on the Left generally allow the Right to take power if they do so democratically. Sure they destroy everything like they always do, but most of us are committed to the democratic means of seeking power. Even most Communist parties will not take up arms against any rightwing government, saying they prefer to seek power by peaceful means. Typically, the CP will issue a statement that the nation is not in a revolutionary situation right now. There are objective conditions under which a nation is said to be in a revolutionary situation. I’m sure you can recall a few. It is then and only then that most CP’s will go underground and issue a call to take up arms.
Frankly, almost all Left insurgencies postwar were defensive. The Left allowed the Right to take power and then the Right started running around killing people. Usually the Left sat there for a while and let themselves get killed before taking up power. I know the Viet Cong just sat there from 1954-1960 while the rightwing Vietnamese government ran amok in the countryside, murdering 80,000 Communists in six years. They kept asking the North Vietnamese for permission to take up arms, but the North kept denying it.
The Colombian, Salvadoran and Guatemalan guerrillas only took up guns after the state had been running about murdering them unarmed for years. The Salvadoran guerrillas said they got tired of sitting in their homes waiting for the rightwing state to come kill them, and they decided that if the state was going to come kill them anyway, they might as well pick up a gun and defend themselves. They also took up arms because the Right kept stealing elections by fraud.
The Right had cut off all methods of seeking power peacefully, so the Left picked up guns. The message is if you elect a leftwing government, sooner or later the Right will overthrow it and then there will be a reign of terror where many Leftists will be murdered. Knowing that, if you were a Leftist in some country, would you not be afraid to put the Left in power knowing you stood a good chance of being murdered once the inevitable rightwing coup took place?
The Colombian and Honduran governments only stay in power by killing people. Lots of people. The Greek Communists only took up arms after the government had been killing them for some time.
Also once a Left government is overthrown by the rich and the capitalists, the new Rightist government institutes a reign of terror where they slaughter the defeated Left for many years. This went on for decades after 1954 in Guatemala, and it goes on still today. After Aristide was overthrown, the rightwing government murdered 3,000 of his supporters.
After Allende was overthrown, Pinochet murdered 15,000 people over a decade and a half. A threat from the Left prompted the Indonesian government to fake a Left coup and murder 1 million Communists in a couple of months. Even before the Korean War broke out, from 1948-1950, the South Korean government killed hundreds of thousands of Communists in the South.
As they withdrew when the North attacked, the South Koreans killed South Korean Communists everywhere they went. After the fascist coup in Argentina, the government decimated the Left, murdering 30,000 mostly unarmed supporters of the Left. The same thing happened in Bolivia with the Banzer Plan when Hugo Banzer took power after the tin miners briefly sought power. The new rightwing government in Brazil is already starting to murder members of the former Left ruling party. They’re not going to stop.
After the fascist coup in Ukraine, the Communist Party was outlawed and many of its members were murdered. War was declared on labor unions. Workers in one union were chained to a heater inside the building and the building was set on fire.
The party supported by half the population (the Russian speakers and their supporters) the Party of Regions, was outlawed, a number of its deputies were murdered and there were attempts to murder the leader of the party, lastly by setting his house on fire which set his neighbor’s house on fire instead. He fled to Russia. Now half the population and all of the Russian speakers had not party to represent them, which is why they took up arms. They were locked out of power.

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Should the Rich and the Reactionaries Be Given Rights?

Sisera: So what does that mean then? You believe rich people are inherently oppressors who don’t deserve rights but then White men are okay?

Most of them are oppressors, of course. Don’t you even understand class politics or the nature of capitalism at all. Those rich people who are pursuing their economic self interests in the class war, well of course they are our oppressors. The oppressors of me and mine anyway. I suppose they see us as oppressors.
Marxist theory doesn’t say that anyway. It just says that when the rich pursue their self interests in the class war, everyone who’s not rich gets fucked. You want to call that oppression? You are welcome to. If you side with the rich, you are an idiot. Why would you side with your class enemies. Most of them are oppressors, of course. Don’t you even understand class politics or the nature of capitalism at all.
Those rich people who are pursuing their economic self interests in the class war, well of course they are our oppressors. The oppressors of me and mine anyway. I suppose they see us as oppressors. Marxist theory doesn’t say that anyway. It just says that when the rich pursue their self interests in the class war, everyone who’s not rich gets fucked. You want to call that oppression? You are welcome to. If you side with the rich, you are an idiot. Why would you side with your class enemies?
The rich are our class enemies. Does that mean they oppress us? I dunno. When they’re in power, they screw us over. All of the rich hate democracy, lie like rugs, and support violence, murder, terror, genocide, coups, and dictatorships anywhere the people take power.
Personally, I think all conservatives and reactionaries are pure filth. I wish they would all drop dead tomorrow. That way they would be where they belong: in graves. They’re nothing but pure garbage. Show me a reactionary or conservative anywhere on Earth that’s actually a human and not a lying, sadistic, murderous piece of scum. There aren’t any!
In a democratic society, of course the rich get their rights, but they abuse the fuck out of them, and anytime they people take power, the rich start using violence, coups, death squads, rioting, judicial and legislative coups, etc. to get their way. We let the rich take power all the time. They won’t let us take power at all. I’m glad the Chinese Communists took away the rights of the reactionaries.
Look what would happen if they had rights? See Venezuela, Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, Honduras, Haiti, Brazil, Paraguay, Colombia, Nicaragua, Indonesia, Philippines? That’s what happens when you give the rich and the reactionaries any rights at all. Right now they would be burning China to the ground like they are doing to Venezuela and Nicaragua because they are furious that a people’s government got put in.
If that’s the way they are always, always, always going to act, why give them rights? So they can destroy your country and take down any democratically elected government they don’t believe in?
They try to destroy by antidemocratic means any people’s or popular government any time it gets in.
And when they take power themselves, they usually put in a dictatorship.
This is what happens if they don’t get their way and the people elect a democratically elected people’s government:
Attempted coups by street violence: Nicaragua, Ukraine, Syria, and Thailand.
Attempted coups by economic warfare: Venezuela, North Korea, Iran, Syria, and Nicaragua.
Coups by legislative means: Paraguay and Brazil.
Attempted legislative coup: Venezuela.
Coups by judicial means: Brazil.
Coups by direct overthrow of the state: Honduras, Haiti, Venezuela, and Egypt.
Attempted coups by direct overthrow of the state: Ecuador and Bolivia.
Coup by insurgency: Haiti.
Attempted coup by insurgency: Syria.
Coups by direct invasion: Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Panama, Libya, and Grenada.
This is what happens every time they get into power, especially if they take over a people’s government: 
Right-wing death squad authoritarian regime installed: Honduras*, El Salvador, Argentina, Brazil*, Guatemala*, Chile, Philippines*, Uruguay, Bolivia, Indonesia*, and Ukraine*.
No I don’t have a problem taking away rights from reactionary fucks! Why should we give them rights? Give me one reason! One! One reason!

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Repost: Average IQ's of Liberals Versus Conservatives (with References)

Thought I would repost this with references. This finding is very robust in social science. Liberals are smart. Conservatives are idiots. That’s all there is to it, folks. But you knew that.

Jason Voorhees: Liberals in general have an IQ of 110 or above.

Quite an exaggeration. More like 105. 75% of the population has an IQ below 110. On the other hand, he is onto something.
We don’t call em conservatards for nothing, I guess.
Liberals are actually smarter than conservatives! Quite a bit smarter. And the more liberal you are, the smarter you. And the more conservative you are, the dumber you are. It’s a linear curve.

               IQ
Liberals       106
Centrists      99
Conservatives  96

Source

I would argue that the reason for that is that conservatism is basically stupid. So of course stupid people support it. Fiscal conservatism is intelligent if you are rich and possibly if you are upper middle class, but it’s idiotic for everyone else because only the top 20% make money under rightwing economics. The entire 80% of the population loses money.

Political ideology
Ha ha! Conservatives are stupid! Liberals are smart! Something we always knew. No wonder they are called conservatards. Neener neener. Conservatives are so stupid they probably spell dumb “dum.” LOL.

Rightwing economics is a massive wealth transfer system from the poor and middle classes to the upper middle class and the rich. It’s basically a scam. Pure class war. Incidentally this has been proved all over the 3rd World, especially in Latin America. Surveys in Latin America under the neoliberal decades of failure showed that only the top 20% benefited under rightwing economics. The entire bottom 80% lost money. Furthermore, death rates skyrocketed and education figures collapsed. Neoliberalism has killed many millions of people. We may not have yet found a good alternative to capitalism, but capitalism surely continues to kill as sure as night follows day.
Oh and there is a reason why liberals control most US institutions. Although the idea of a liberal media is pathetic, 89% of media whores, I mean journalists, call themselves liberal. But universities are liberal. The only major US institution that is not liberal is business, which is conservative for basically self-serving interests because conservatism serves to line their pockets better while it picks the pockets of the poor and middle class. Steal from the poor and give to the rich. Reverse Robin Hood. That’s conservatism in action. The fact that the people calling themselves Christians in the US support Reverse Robin Hood is truly pathetic. Obviously they know nothing about how the Main Man lived his life.

References

Carl, Noah. 2014. Verbal Intelligence Is Correlated with Socially and Economically Liberal Beliefs. Intelligence, Volume 44, Pages 142-148.
Stankov, Lazar. 2009. Conservatism and Cognitive Ability. Intelligence, Volume 37, Issue 3, Pages 294-304.
Thompson, James. November 29, 2015. US Academics: Lefty and Liberal Because of High IQ? Unz.com.
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73% of Venezuelans Continue to Support Chavismo

Tulio: Robert, I have two friends from Venezuela, a married couple, the female is white, the male is dark brown. I assure you they are not racist, they have never called me “mono” and they have been completely and 100% kind to me as long as I’ve known them. I have even visited them and stayed in their home, and they have visited me and stayed in mine. Never seen their bank account but I’m pretty sure they are not rich.
They are probably middle class by Venezuelan definition. They are 100% opposed to Chavismo. I don’t even know where they fall on the left-right continuum per se. They really don’t even talk much politics with me outside of opposing the condition their country is in. They are now living in Santiago, Chile where they worked and resided since the rise of Chavez, but frequently go to Venezuela to see family. I’m not an expert of Venezuelan internal affairs by any means. I’ve gotten a lot of my info directly from them.
Neither of them seem “right wing” to me in any sense that I understand the term. They seem to want nothing more than a stable, functional and non-authoritarian government. I also see massive marches in Caracas. I can’t believe all those tens of thousands of people are rich, right wingers. When I see close up photos of the crowd, they look like just ordinary Venezuelans to me. You seem to be painting a broad brush here and assuming anyone against Chavismo is a hard right-winger

Any Venezuelan who has the money to travel out of the country to the US or back and forth to Chile all the time, all by plane, is by definition not middle class. I would call those people upper middle class.
There will never be a government like they want in there as long as Chavismo is in because the Opposition will always be rioting in the streets and tearing stuff up like they have been doing ever since he got in. These people say they want a non-authoritarian government, but they supported the coup against Chavez. The first things the putschists did was to dissolve Congress, the National Assembly and Courts and put in martial law. They put a dictatorship in as soon as the coup took power.
The poster’s friends say they want a non-authoritarian state, but they support the extreme dictatorship that took power in the coup. The Opposition riots in the streets and calls for a coup every time they lose an election. This is because every time they lose an election, they insist against all evidence that it was stolen from them. Their calculus is that the only legitimate elections are the ones that they win. If the other side wins, it’s automatically stolen due to fraud, and we need to have a military coup to put “democracy” back in power. That ideology does not sound very democratic to me.  To the Opposition,  the definition of democracy is “when we win.” The definition of dictatorship is “when the other side wins.” Sound like a democratic project?

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A decptively large Opposition crowd in Venezuela. You will not find one working class, low income or poor person in that crowd. Everyone is middle class to rich. And no matter how big that crowd is, the Chavista march will always be a lot bigger. That crowd represents 27% of the population. That’s called a minority movement.

They lack majority support. That crowd is the upper class, the upper middle class and unfortunately a lot of the middle class. There are a lot of middle class people in those crowds.
This is where the poster is getting his ideology from. Them and their lies. The Venezuelan Opposition is out of their minds. They are not rational and they are not honest. They lie constantly. They are as bad as Trump and the Trumpster Republicans, and in fact, both movements are very similar.
The project of the Opposition is extreme rightwing. I told you that they regularly call Chavez mono and that they removed Bolivar’s portrait because he was a bit too swarthy and not White enough and replaced it with a more proper Nordic one. The poster’s friends may not be racist reactionaries, but a lot of the people in the Opposition are very racist, and the poster’s friends are not denouncing that. I guess they are OK with it.
The project of the Opposition is to dismantle all of Chavismo and to go back to the way it was.
They are going to take it all down – the free health care, the free education, the neighborhood councils and circles, the public housing, the redistribution of oil income to the people, the cheap government-subsidized food and household goods to the people, the free houses given to the people, the public spending on infrastructure, the whole nine yards. Before Chavez came in, you never went to the doctor, the dentist or the eye doctor because you could not afford it. You either got over the medical issue or you died. Raw sewage ran down the streets of the shantytowns on the hills. In 1989, 91% of the people could afford only one meal a day and that was the same percentage of people in poverty. Venezuela had always been like this since Independence. The oligarchy had always been in charge and had never lifted one damn finger for the people.
All of the opposition politicians want to go back to that. All of them. The poster’s friends may not realize this, or perhaps they do not care. The Latin American middle class has always lined up with the Extreme Right project of the rich and the oligarchs, much to their detriment. This is because they consider the opposition to that  project to be Communists, and they think that is worse.
In Latin America, it’s Commies or Fascists. That’s your choice. Pick your poison. That’s because moderation or a Centrist project never works down there. The problems are too severe, and Centrist projects never touch the power of the oligarchs, so nothing ever changes.
Venezuela has never been more democratic than under Chavez. Venezuela has the freest press in Latin America. The authoritarian dictatorship crap is another big fat lie the Opposition made up.
73% of the Venezuelan people continue to support the Chavista Project because it’s the only one that’s for the people. The Opposition has no numbers. Those people you see marching above are part of the 27% opposition, and that is why they never win. I would also point out that pro-government marches happen at the same time as those Opposition marches, and they are almost always much bigger. You just never read about them in the Western media.
Those 73% are not stupid. They remember life back when the oligarchy ruled. They know that the Opposition wants to go directly back to that and not change one thing. This has been their project from Day One. Yes, it is a very far right, reactionary project. Compared to what the Opposition wants, most of the people want to stay with Chavismo.

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Venezuela: The Lies Never Stop

Tulio: Left wing economics aren’t working out in Latin America either. Let’s face it, Latin America is dysfunctional whether it’s run by the left or right. I know Robert is a Chavista and all but the results speak for itself. They are probably a few clicks away from outright civil war.

The poster’s problem is that he gets all his Venezuela news from the Western media. You will not read one true thing about that country in the Western media. It is an all out propaganda war from Day One. If you want to read the truth about Venezuela, go to Venezuelanalysis. It’s all straight up 100% facts there, no spin. And many articles are quite critical of the government.
Yes, it is a civil war because the Right is running through the streets rioting, killing people, burning down buildings, buses and police cars. Let me ask you something. Suppose when Obama was in, Republicans went on a rampage all over the US, rioting, burning stuff down, killing people, firing guns, setting up snipers, setting off bombs, throwing grenades, killing lots of cops. Would you blame Obama for that? Because that is exactly what the commenter is doing.
This is part of the Right’s project down there. They lost the election, so they are trying to overthrow the government by force. What exactly is the state supposedly do about what is in effect a rightwing insurgency?
What they are trying to do is to create so much chaos that the military steps in and does a rightwing coup. Barring that, they are creating so much chaos and disorder that the US steps in with the military, invades and overthrows the Chavistas in the name of humanitarian intervention. It’s the exact same scheme we pulled in Syria when we turned ISIS and Al Qaeda loose on secular regime.
The US government’s official policy in Venezuela now is regime change. Mattis himself said so. The riots, destruction, arson, murders and political assassinations are all being coordinated with the US. We are the cause of all that violence down there.
There are no poor results of Chavismo. Things were booming along for many years. The rightwing has been sabotaging and boycotting the economy since Day One.
Norway is far more socialist than Venezuela. China is orders of magnitude more socialist than Venezuela. There’s nothing socialist at all about Venezuela. The economy is 100% capitalist controlled.
All Chavismo did was take a lot of that oil revenue and spend it on the people. If you think that’s a failed model, I do not know what to say to you.
After the oil price crashed, the government could no longer cover up for the business sector’s sabotage of the economy.
There are shortages? How can there be shortages in a 100% capitalist controlled economy? Answer me that. There cannot be. If there are shortages, why don’t they import some food? Why don’t they make some stuff that is in shortage?
The business sector is refusing to import products, and they are refusing to make products in short supply.
You need to go study how Kissinger and Nixon blew up the Chilean economy. They did the exact same thing, down to the letter. This is the Chilean Model down to the letter.

“We will make the Chilean economy scream.
–  Henry Kissinger.

Every week they seize huge warehouses full of products that are being hoarded by the capitalists in order to create artificial shortages. You heard of a shortage of syringes? A warehouse full of 21 million syringes was recently seized. If you read the Venezuelan papers, these seizures happen all the time, maybe every other day.
Why is there inflation? The capitalists have caused artificial shortages by hoarding stuff, refusing to produce stuff and refusing to import stuff. These artificial shortages of course caused inflation.
This economic sabotage has been going on from Day One, but when the oil prices were high, the government could cover up for the Economic War by importing their own products and selling them to people for cheap. Hence the state covered up all the artificial shortages caused by the refusal to import and manufacture products. When the oil price crashed, the state no longer had the money to import goods to cover up for the shortages, and furthermore, the Economic War went into high gear.
Furthermore, since Maduro has come in, he has made a hard turn to the Right from Chavez. His administration of full of rightwingers and representatives of the business sector. He caves to opposition demands over and over. They are always demanding hikes in the controlled prices, and he keeps raising them. No matter how much they raise the prices, the capitalists do not produce one more item. It’s all a scam.
Keep in mind that the economic crash has occurred against the background of a hard right turn in the government under a government that is now about 50% rightwingers and people from the business community. They can’t get a handle on things either. Did you hear what I said?
The economy crashed as the government turned Right and filled the executive with people from the business sector. According to the poster’s logic, rightwing economics is responsible for the crash.
That’s not really true either. Neither Right nor Left economics is responsible for the crash. The ministers from the business community can’t control the problems either. No one can.
There is a problem with currency, but that was created by the capitalists too. Currency controls were put in because the capitalists were taking all their money out of the country. No country can put up with that for long. So currency controls were put in, but that causes a black market in currency.
Price controls were put in because the capitalists staged a lockout strike that caused horrible shortages and sent prices skyrocketing.
Incidentally, despite currency controls, the business community still takes $50 billion out of the country every year. Do you know how much more they would take out if the currency controls were taken off?  The system would probably collapse.
The fake excuse all along was that price controls make it so the producing the price controlled products is not worthwhile. This is their fake excuse for the shortages. Now the price controls have been almost completely lifted, and they are still refusing to make stuff or import stuff. What’s their fake excuse now?
I agree that the standard Communist model caused a lot of economic problems, but the lie is that Venezuela is a Communist country like Cuba or the USSR, and this is the cause of all the problems. It’s caused by “socialist failure.” Why isn’t socialism failing in Europe? Why isn’t it failing in China? Why isn’t it failing in most of the world that runs social democratic systems?
The Chavistas were simply trying to produce a European style social democracy in Venezuela. Even that’s too much for the Venezuelan elite.
I will have you know that the rightwing Venezuelans the poster cheers for are some of the racist people on Earth. The commenter is Black. I assure you that the people he cheers for hate him because he is Black. Their word for Chavez was Mono. That means monkey. They call him monkey because his White blood is mixed with Indian and Black.
When they came into power, the first thing they did was take down the portrait of Bolivar because they said he looked too dark. They put up a new portrait that showed him as White as a Swede. These are the racists that this Black commenter is supporting.
The government is screwing up badly by not floating the currency, but that’s not a Right versus Left thing so it’s not a fault of Left economics. It would be a very unpopular decision, and Maduro is a weak and not very good leader and he does not have the balls to put in.
Hence I agree that the problems in part are caused by failures of the regime, but those failures having nothing to do with Right or Left economics. They’re not dealing with the currency problems, and that’s a failure on their part, but it has nothing to do with capitalism or socialism or any of that.
The price controls were put in to fight inflation. The Right screams about inflation and about price controls. They took all the price controls off, and the prices went way up. Now they are screaming because the prices went up. They criticize the problem, and they attack the solution to the problem.
You can’t win with these people.
I agree that the Communist model leaves a lot to be desired, and the lie is that the problems of Cuba and the USSR are being replicated in Venezuela. It’s a lie because Venezuela never even made it to social democracy. Venezuela is a capitalist country through and through.
I will ban any posters who attack Venezuela as a failure of Left economics because it’s nothing of the sort. Now if  you want to talk about problems with the Cuban model, go for it.
 

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Average IQ's of Liberals Versus Conservatives

Jason Voorhees: Liberals in general have an IQ of 110 or above.

Quite an exaggeration. More like 105. 75% of the population has an IQ below 110. On the other hand, he is onto something.
We don’t call em conservatards for nothing, I guess.
Liberals are actually smarter than conservatives! Quite a bit smarter. And the more liberal you are, the smarter you. And the more conservative you are, the dumber you are. It’s a linear curve.

               IQ
Liberals       106
Centrists      99
Conservatives  96

Source

I would argue that the reason for that is that conservatism is basically stupid. So of course stupid people support it. Fiscal conservatism is intelligent if you are rich and possibly if you are upper middle class, but it’s idiotic for everyone else because only the top 20% make money under rightwing economics. The entire 80% of the population loses money.

Political ideology
Ha ha! Conservatives are stupid! Liberals are smart! Something we always knew. No wonder they are called conservatards. Neener neener. Conservatives are so stupid they probably spell dumb “dum.” LOL.

Rightwing economics is a massive wealth transfer system from the poor and middle classes to the upper middle class and the rich. It’s basically a scam. Pure class war. Incidentally this has been proved all over the 3rd World, especially in Latin America. Surveys in Latin America under the neoliberal decades of failure showed that only the top 20% benefited under rightwing economics. The entire bottom 80% lost money. Furthermore, death rates skyrocketed and education figures collapsed. Neoliberalism has killed many millions of people. We may not have yet found a good alternative to capitalism, but capitalism surely continues to kill as sure as night follows day.
Oh and there is a reason why liberals control most US institutions. Although the idea of a liberal media is pathetic, 89% of media whores, I mean journalists, call themselves liberal. But universities are liberal. The only major US institution that is not liberal is business, which is conservative for basically self-serving interests because conservatism serves to line their pockets better while it picks the pockets of the poor and middle class. Steal from the poor and give to the rich. Reverse Robin Hood. That’s conservatism in action. The fact that the people calling themselves Christians in the US support Reverse Robin Hood is truly pathetic. Obviously they know nothing about how the Main Man lived his life.

References

Carl, Noah. 2014. Verbal Intelligence Is Correlated with Socially and Economically Liberal Beliefs. Intelligence, Volume 44, Pages 142-148.
Stankov, Lazar. 2009. Conservatism and Cognitive Ability. Intelligence Volume 37, Issue 3, Pages 294-304.
Thompson, James. November 29, 2015. US Academics: Lefty and Liberal Because of High IQ? Unz.com.
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America As a Wealthy Version of a Banana Republic

Lousy people create lousy countries. We don’t even have a democracy anymore. We have a Latin American style oligarchy with a Latin American style corrupt press that speaks with a single voice. We even have Latin American style corrupt courts all the way up the highest court in the land.
The Legislative branch is as corrupt as any Latin American Congress as 90% are directly on the take and bribing politicians is for all intents and purposes legal thanks to another corrupt Supreme Court act.The Legislative branch has spent most of its time lately dissolving the state (shutting down the government), resembling a typical do-nothing minimal Latin American state in the process. And it attempted an electoral coup with a Latin American style fake impeachment attempt on a sitting president.
The Executive Branch is truly scary like a Latin American dictatorship that just dissolved Congress like they always do, having decided that Congress is no longer needed to declare war, I mean any war anywhere.
George Bush’s caudillo-style signing statements were one of the worst abuses of power the nation has ever seen. The government spent most of its time using the state to target and smear opponents, Latin American-style.
We have state governments who used corruption to redraw electoral maps in the spirit of utter contempt for democracy. The same states spend most of their time trying to prevent people from voting. Sort of like Latin America where armed troops stand outside the polling places and watch you vote. Who ya gonna vote for?
Now one of the political parties is apparently openly fascist in the style of a typical Latin American rightwing party. The other political p0arty of the so-called left is absolutely useless to lift a finger against the oligarchs, or worse, they are the oligarchs, once again in the style of Latin American Christian Democrats (Duarte) and social democrats (APRA, AD, PRI) who are anything but.
And now we have an open fascist running from President while a complaint press cheers. His opponent is an Accion Democratica-style fake left cipher. As usual, there’s no one to vote for. There’s violence in the streets and at the rallies. Politicians are making open violent threats against the opposition. Demonstrations turn into free for all’s between gangs of the hard Left and Right.
And I’m sitting here thinking, “Ok so when do the death squads start? The political assassinations? The cardboard shack slums tumbling down the hills for miles on end?”
I’m thinking I must be in the wrong hemisphere. Banana republic, here we come.

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The Foreign Policy of the United States of America

I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.
I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested.
Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.” Gen. Smedley Butler

This man was a general in the US military. And this is what he spent most of his time doing as a general in the US military – rampaging around Latin America overthrowing governments, raping countries, stealing resources and slaughtering people, all so US corporations could rule over their lands as de facto colonies of the United States. None of these countries were even given the opportunity to pursue an independent course of development. None of these actions were ever done in solidarity, instead they were all done in the name of neocolonial imperialism as part of the creation of the American Empire in Latin America, a project which is ongoing as I write this. That is correct, Latin America is still a colony of the United States. A few places tried to liberate themselves from US colonialism and achieve independence, and look what happened to them: Haiti, Grenada, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Venezuela, and Brazil. Earlier cases involved Guatemala, the Dominican Republican, Guyana, and Chile. Brazil and Argentina just got taken down and the Venezuela is finally in the process of being taken down after over 15 years of unrelenting US warfare.
As you can see, raw, naked US imperialism of the most vicious and brutal kind has always been the way of the United States, dating back all the way to 1900. So we were nice guys before that? Nope. We sucked in the 1800’s too. The US spent most of the 1800’s slaughtering American Indians, stealing their land and stabbing them in the back with fake treaties. That was when we were not invading Mexico and stealing and annexing Mexican land.
Although we didn’t do much in Latin America in the 1800’s, that was only because there was not much to do down there. The US did not have much of a foreign policy period, and US corporations did not tend to operate overseas. Further all of Latin America was in the hands of the vicious and voracious Latin American ruling classes which kept their nations in the most abject poverty and pitiful underdevelopment while the rich stole every nickel the economies ever created, leaving everyone else in rags holding the bag. Rule by the vicious 1% has always been a-ok with the US; in fact, this is how we prefer it. Any nation that overthrows rule by the rich to put in democratic rule by the people is usually taken out sooner or later by the United States, often using the very military that Butler lamented being a part of.
I would like to point out one very sorry thing. First of all, not one single thing has changed about US foreign policy since Smedley wrote those famous words. This is still exactly what US foreign policy in Latin America and to a lesser extent other places is composed of. And in between the time Butler is describing until our present day, what he describes has been US foreign policy the entire time. We’ve never had a decent foreign policy for a day in this country. Even the most liberal regimes pursued vicious foreign policies. FDR’s foreign policy in Latin America was monstrous – “Somoza may be a sonofabitch, but he’s our sonofabitch.” Teddy Roosevelt was a progressive reformer at home and a monster overseas. “Walk softly and carry a big stick” was his vicious, violent, brutal policy of conquest and dictatorial rule in Latin America. In fact, most of the continent was actually officially colonized under Teddy’s rule. This has always been the way in US politics. That disgusting foreign policy described by Butler has been fully embraced by both parties from Day One. The Democrats were down with it just as much as the Republicans. This is what was known as “the bipartisan foreign policy consensus.” The Democrats were only progressive on domestic issues. They were just as reactionary as Republicans on foreign policy. The two parties have always only differed on domestic policy. This year is no different. In fact, this year Hitlery’s foreign policy is actually much more rightwing and imperialist than even the Republican Donald Trump’s! Trump isn’t really an anti-imperialist, but he’s the closest thing to one in US politics – a good, old-fashioned isolationist. The upshot is that his foreign policy actually ends up being a lot more progressive than “liberal” Democrat Killary’s. Unbelievable! The Democrats are more rightwing that the Republicans!
There doesn’t seem to be any way out of this imperial bullshit. This crap has been the America way for so long that I am not sure that we as a country understand any other way of looking at the world. It’s gotten to where this vicious imperial foreign policy is the only thing we understand. We literally do not know how to act any other way. And when you get both parties in on the program along with ~100% of the media, you have what amounts to 100% US political, corporate and media elite consensus on the outlines of a foreign policy along with a full spectrum dominance way of promoting it. Poll after poll for years shows that Americans almost always support whatever shenanigans US foreign policy is up to at the moment. So the elites do not have to worry about the masses marching in the streets over foreign policy. Americans are always in complete lockstep with foreign policy probably due to media brainwashing. Deep state media control is so complete that the entire media spectrum typically supports anything and everything the Deep State does and believes foreign policy-wise. There’s literally no dissent. The media is that controlled, 100% controlled. With wall to wall 24-7 broadcasting, net and news publishing it’s no surprised that on foreign policy, Americans appear about as brainwashed as a North Korean.

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Latin America: Where All Political Parties Have Always Been Ruling Class Parties

A previous post pointed out how one of the biggest parties in the Venezuelan far rightwing opposition,the AD, is actually a socialist party or a social democratic party.
Of course the AD was a horrible social democratic party that put shame to the name of social democracy. But social democratic parties in Latin America have been pretty horrible for a long time. Check out the APRA in Peru or the PRI in Mexico. They suck.
Social democratic parties in Latin America are often just vehicles for the avaricious, vicious and often genocidal White ruling classes. Down there, most political parties from “Left” to “Right” have always been run by the monstrous and murderous White ruling classes.
Those parties don’t even differ all that much. Someone needs to tell me the difference between the two Colombian ruling class parties, the “Liberals” and the “Conservatives.” I am not sure I understand. Maybe the Church?

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How the Pentagon and the CIA De Facto Created the FARC

Colombia has a very strange political system. There are two main political parties, the Liberals and the Conservatives, who are striking in that there seems to be so little difference between them. They are both parties of the Colombian ruling class, possibly representing a “liberal” versus “conservative” split in the ruling class a long time ago. Just guessing, the split may have had something to do with religion with the conservatives being the more religious party and wanting a bigger role for the Church in the state and the liberals being more modernizing reformers who were more secular and dedicated to more of a church-state split.
Unbelievably, these two ruling class parties who are barely different at all, spent the entire 1950’s murdering each other by the hundreds of thousands in an insane bloodletting called “La Violencia.” A Leftist politican (I think his name was Galan) was elected in the late 1940’s, but he was quickly murdered by the Colombian ruling class, which is what they always do with any Leftist who wins an election down there. This was the first time that Colombia had elected anyone even remotely resembling a progressive reformer, so of course the ruling class murdered him immediately. His killing set off huge riots all over Colombia that raged for a long time and were difficult to put down.
I believe that this set off the Violencia because I think Galan, a Leftist, actually ran on the Liberal ticket. Most of the people slaughtering each other during this idiotic Violencia were just the Colombian urban poor and the poor peasants of the rural areas. The ruling classes formed armies out of these poor people and sent them out to commit mass murder on each other.
After 300,000 deaths caused by the Colombian ruling class in the Violencia, the roots of the Marxist revolution down there took hold. The FARC were the remains of Violencia fighters who said the heck with this war and took refuge at a place called Mariatelia in Colombia in 1964 and set up communal farms there. They were tired of fighting and just wanted to be left alone.
The Colombian media went crazy screaming about the “Communist government” that seceded from the state had formed down there. The CIA was in on this wild propaganda process from the start.
Eventually the Colombian government went down to this area with a large army force and attacked these communes with massive weaponry. The Pentagon and the CIA were involved in the battle. The US and the Colombians even used chemical weapons to try to exterminate these farmers. The farmers fought back, but they were outnumbered. Maybe 90-95% of them were killed, but a few survived.
The survivors realized that there was no way to live in peace with what has always been a genocidal Colombian ruling class, and they took up arms to defend themselves. This is the way that almost all Leftwing guerrilla wars got started in the Cold War. The Left got tired of sitting around waiting for the government to come out and murder them, so they decided that as long as the government was going to come out and try to kill them, they might as well get some guns and try to defend themselves. This is how the FMLN, the URNG, the FARC, the ELN, the Sandinistas and even the MRTA got started.
So this was the beginning of Manuel “Sure Shot” Marulanda and the FARC, essentially created by the mass murders of the Pentagon and the CIA in Colombia.

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If It's Not Economic War, What Then Is Causing the Shortages in Venezuela?

RL: “The shortages of these goods is occurring because the private sector is refusing to make/import them or make/import enough of them.”
Tulio: I’d need further proof of that. The free market should handle such issues. If one manufacturing of widgets is withholding production that’s an opportunity for another to open up and take his market share.

Well, why isn’t the Venezuelan free market operating as it should then? Does the commenter have any theories on what is causing all of these shortages? If it’s not economic warfare, then what the Hell is causing the shortages? You can’t just shoot down theories you don’t like. You have to shoot them down and then offer another theory instead. What does the commenter think is causing all of these shortages in a capitalist-run economy?
Got any theories?
Hint: The business class is trying to take down the Chavistas by creating an economic crisis and using that crisis to take out the Chavistas.
Has the commenter studied what happened when the US got together with the Chilean business class to wage an economic war and make the Chilean economy scream in order to create an economic crisis that they could use as an excuse to stage a coup against Allende? If you study what happened during the economic war that was waged on Allende, you will see that what is happening in Venezuela is almost exactly the same thing that was done in Chile.
Further, members of the Bolivian business community are quoted on the record as being furious that Evo Morales came into power and vowed to take him out with any means they had. Reporters asked them how they would take down the Morales government, and the business leaders stated that they would wage economic war, stop or slow down all production, create massive shortages and an economic crisis, and then use that to take down the Morales government.
So with the evidence from Chile 1970-1973 and the recent comments by Latin American capitalists in Bolivia, we see that economic warfare to get rid of leftwing governments is very much part of the playbook for the Latin American ruling classes and business sectors.
There are price controls on a lot of the goods. You can make a modest profit on the price controlled goods, and the government keeps raising the price controls all the time under pressure from business. But ever since those price controls went in, the entire business sector has refused to produce or import any price controlled products. Only some basic products are price controlled. Most things you find in the stores are not price controlled.
They would produce something similar to the price controlled product but not quite the same. Rice was price controlled, but the capitalists started importing some special rice products that were not controlled where they could make a huge profit. Chicken was price controlled, but the capitalists just started producing some other sort of chicken (rotisserie chicken?) that was not controlled that got a much larger profit.
This caused terrible problems for a while, but finally the state said, “Ok, you capitalists do not want to produce these price controlled products, then we the state will import them.” So for quite a few years, the state used oil money to import all of the products that were price controlled. This worked very well for a long time, and the shelves were full. The capitalists produced or imported more expensive high profit goods, and the state imported price controlled staples.
However, this all came crashing down with the oil price crash. The state is now broke and can no longer import all of the price controlled staple goods. And the business sector has refused to produce or import price controlled staples ever since the controls went in. So there’s a big reason for the shortages right there.
If the capitalists import products, they can make much more money smuggling the goods to Colombia or selling them on the black market as opposed to selling them on the shelves of Venezuelan stores, so that’s what they do with a lot of imported goods. And any goods they produce may also be smuggled to Colombia or sold on the black market because you can make a much higher profit that way instead of selling them to legitimate outlets.
Also the capitalists need dollars to import products. So they get dollars from the state to import things. So the businesses are always going to the state asking for these cheap dollars saying they want them to import things that are in shortage. So the government gives them the dollars to import things, but instead of using them to import the products in shortage, they play money games with the cheap dollars on the currency markets in the black market.
Also a lot of capitalists have simply stopped making much of anything and instead are playing games with money by speculating in the currency market in the black market, where huge profits may be obtained by selling cheap state dollars at the black market price.

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US Foreign Policy 1946-2016 in a Nutshell: Kill the "Communists"

The US foreign policy line since 1946 with regard to other governments particularly in Latin America, is that anything leftwing in the economy, including government schools, state health care, land reform, labor regulations, labor unions, the minimum wage, and any and all redistribution of wealth programs is all Communism. We have murdered or helped murder millions of people since 1946 after calling them Communists for doing a land reform or raising the minimum wage.
The US has also murdered or helped murder thousands of labor union members and leaders because the US line since 1946 is that labor unions are Communism. Hence all members of unions and especially their leaders are Communists.
The US line since 1946 is that all of these leftwing movements must be suppressed in one way or another, and anyone standing in the way, such as community leaders, labor union members, students, peasants, and native American tribe members are all Communists and are subject to harassment, arrest, beating, firings, torture, imprisonment, and especially murder.
The US, the land of freedom, has murdered or helped murder hundreds of thousands of the people listed above, since according to the US, they were all Communists, and Communists need to be killed. Even with the end of the Cold War, we are still murdering or helping to murder thousands of these people every year after calling them Communists.
This “kill the Communists” campaign is one of thee pillars of US foreign policy for both the Democrats and the Republicans. This project is run out of the Executive Branch, especially the State Department (many of whose employees in embassies are CIA agents), the CIA, the DIA, The National Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute, USAID, the Foundation for US Labor Reform, and especially the Pentagon.
The Pentagon actually has an institute called the School of the Americas in the US South where they teach this “kill the Communists” philosophy to military officers all over the continent. These officers are trained in how to set up and run rightwing death squads to terrorize the people, or excuse me, the Communists. There are also many courses in advanced torture techniques. Almost all of the worst mass murderers in Latin America since 1946 are School of the Americas graduates.

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Chile and the US – No Comparison

Tulio writes:

I don’t know man, the left really has not been successful in creating economic growth anywhere in Latin America. So I can’t blame them for going right down there. Blame that on the incompetence of the Latin American left.

How was the Latin American Left incompetent? I can’t think of one way that they were incompetent.

It was the Right that failed. Look at the neoliberalism of the 1990’s. It completely collapsed economic growth in Latin America. Most Latin Americans could give a f about economic growth. I think Colombia has the highest economic growth in the Hemisphere. What good is it doing them?

Economic growth in Latin America has typically benefited only the elites. The neoliberalism that the US pushed in the 1990’s and 2000’s impoverished most people and crashed economic growth. Only the top 20% in Latin America benefited from the neoliberalism that Washington and the Latin American Right pushes. In Chile, all rightwing economics did was engender a mass transfer of wealth from the bottom 2/3 of income bracket to the top 1/3 of the income bracket. Why support that?

Chile has not even really turned to the Right anyway. They’ve been electing Socialists from Allende’s party for the last 20 years of so. When was the last time a self-proclaimed Socialist was elected to the US? But those Socialists are not able to do all that much though the latest one claims she is different.

Most of the people in Chile probably do not support this rightwing bullshit. Chile is just like the US – the poor, working and middle classes all vote for the parties of the Rich, and they damage their own interests by doing so. There is a significant crowd who are now invested in this rightwing bullshit, but I doubt if it is the majority. Instead you have one of the most politically polarized populations on Earth.

Schoolkids stage demonstrations all the time about public schooling, which has been in essence defunded by the state. Your average Chilean public school now has a caved-in roof and ceiling that will never be repaired. These student demonstrations typically turn violent and have to be broken up by the police.

The class hatred in Chile is so thick you can cut it with a knife. This is what your rightwing dream politics gives you – one of the most unequal societies on Earth, mass transfers of wealth from everyone else to the upper middle class and the rich and defunding of public anything, especially the schools.

Also casual racism and classism of your average Chilean would knock your cocks off. I had a friend who was a Chilean university student in Santiago. His father had served in Allende’s government. He was a sociology student studying the Indians in the South. Nevertheless the racism and classism of this supposedly leftwing Chilean was off the charts from a US point of view. Apparently it is perfectly normal in Chile to think like a bigoted White aristocrat.

My understanding is that economic growth has been excellent under the Left regimes in Ecuador, Bolivia, Venezuela and even the Fake Left rightwingers Brazil.

As I said, most Latin Americans would give a flying f about economic growth. It’s never benefited them anyway. Most of them just want an improvement in their standard of living. And that is exactly what the new Left regimes down there have given them – Venezuela in particular is a standout.

I am not aware of any statistics that show that the Right in Latin America is doing any better growth-wise than the Left, and it wouldn’t matter anyway because under the Latin American Right, all of the economic growth only goes to the top 20% of the population, and everyone else loses money.

Tulio writes:

Yeah, it sounds no worse than the USA to be honest.

It’s nothing like the US at all. First of all, a large segment of the population are out and out fascists who support the fascist Pinochet, America’s favorite Latin American hero.This same segment also absolutely despises the Allende regime as what they see as the Regime of Satan. They hate his supporters today, and they pretty much want them dead.

A very large other segment of the population supported the Allende regime and hate Pinochet with a passion. There are regular demonstrations between Pinochet supporters among the rich and Allende supporters among the non-rich. These typically break out into wild riots where both sides physically assault each other.

You have a split population class- and politics-wise where the non-rich and the Left is basically the Radical Left and the rich and upper middle class are the Extreme Right, fascists for all intents and purposes. Society is completely polarized.

Women’s rights are abysmal.

The Indians of the South stage regular demonstrations about this or that injustice which typically turn violent.

The situation down there is so extreme that is nothing like the US at all. We hardly have any class hatred here. The Right is indeed the Hard Right, but they are not Pinochet-style fascists, though they are getting that way fast. The Left down here is not the Hard Left at all. The Left is represented by the Democratic Party, which is a somewhat liberal version of the Republican Party. We don’t have regular wild street battles between the Left and Right. The classism and racism in the US is nowhere near that of Chile.

Women’s rights in the US are excellent. The natives are politically neutered and are too drunk and stoned to get out of bed in the morning, much less demonstrate about anything.

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Friday the Thirteenth in Paris

Here.

Superb article by Chris Floyd,  one of my favorite writers. He pins the blame for all of these jihadist monsters on the US.

I do not think that is 100% true, but the fact is that the US always whatever rightwingers are  around – be they fascists (Operation Gladio and many rightwing dictatorships the world over, mostly in Southeast Asia –  the Philippines and Indonesia, Latin America – Haiti, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Paraguay, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina and Brazil, Africa – Kenya, South Africa, Rhodesia, Zaire, Kenya, Morocco or Europe – Turkey, Portugal, Spain and Greece) Nazis (Operation Condor, Ukraine).

All you have to do to get US support is be a rightwing government and this holds true under both Republican and Democratic Administrations. The radical fundamentalist and often sectarian Islamists absolutely hated secularism, socialism and Communism, so they were and are great tools for us to use when we attacked secular, nationalist, socialist or Communist governments anywhere on Earth.

We started this crap with the overthrow of Mossadegh in Iran in 1953, where we used Islamists to help in the coup. In 1965, we used Islamists among others to help Indonesia kill 1 million Communists in a very short period of time. We really picked up the pace with Brezhinski’s brilliant idea under Carter to use radical Al Qaeda types to overthrow the Communist government in Afghanistan. The Afghan jihad virtually created the international jihad, and Al Qaeda and the rest of the global jihad types. There are allegations, not quite proven, that the US helped to arm, fund and train the Chechen radical Islamists against Russia. We used Islamists against Libya and now Syria. We are currently arming Islamists against Iran.

Bottom line is we helped to create this whole mess. Not through pure design, sure, but these global jihad monsters were the logical outcome of US policies which continue to this very day in Syria and Yemen where we are supporting radical Sunni Wahhabi Islamists sectarians including Al Qaeda against the populist Houthi rebellion and the majority of the Yemeni Army who has gone over to them. We recently backed radical Sunni Islamists in Lebanon to attack Hezbollah.

Global jihad is our baby. It’s our Frankenstein. We made it, and now we have to deal with the consequences.

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