It’s the Economy, Stupid: Will Trump Be the End of Economic Globalization?

trump-money

NOTE:  I recommend reading my latest article  in conjunction with this

It is not an over statement to say that US-led neoliberal economic/corporate globalization—which ushered in the privatization and downsizing of vast public and labour sectors, the off shoring of jobs to cheaper labour markets abroad, and mass unemployment and underemployment worldwide, especially in the west—has practically destroyed the world, including the United States. It is also not an overstatement to say that the reigning in or reversal of economic globalization, if such a thing is even possible, would greatly benefit the ever-increasing poor, unemployed and underemployed peoples of the world.

What is Economic Globalization?

Prior to WWII and the US’ full ascent to global economic super power, the United States had what is known as a protectionist or isolationist economy, meaning it did not trade much with other nations and production and manufacturing was done mainly in house. Following its victory in the Second World War, the US was in a position of power as much of Europe lay in ruins and in  need of “aid.” The US seized the opportunity (some say it actually created this opportunity, but that is a topic for another article).  The US was able to economically enslave parts of Europe with its Marshall Plan. [1] Part of the conditions for Marshall Plan “aid” was the opening up of European markets to the US and economic restructuring and integration in a manner that favoured the US capitalist model and US banks and corporations.  With this, economic globalization began. With time the US was able to become a full-fledged Empire by (often forcibly) spreading its version of capitalism around the world. This made the US Empire unique in that is was largely economic in nature—what is know as capitalist imperialism. But capitalist imperialism is a highly political and militarized process, and the threat of military force and endless imperial war and invasion has always gone hand-in-hand with US economic empire.

Through economic globalization and its global monetary institutions and banks (i.e., IMF, WTO, World Bank, etc), the US was able to economically high jack the rest of the world while presenting itself—as it always does—as a global saviour. Globalization was presented as the ultimate and obvious remedy for what supposedly ails the world. The vision offered from leading advocates and beneficiaries of this “new world order,” were unfailingly positive, even utopian: “Globalization will be a panacea for all our ills.” [2] Corporate globalization was portrayed as the road to paradise, the inevitable unraveling of history and, indeed, the end of history–the final solution and last good idea. Continue reading

Is The Trump Win the End of Identity Politics?

femtards

Whatever one may think of Donald Trump, if his presidential win, and the post-election liberal democratic freak out, tells us anything– it is that the flawed liberal (not to be mistaken with radical) agenda of identity politics and rabid political correctness may be coming to an end.

Once upon a time, I considered myself left wing. For me, this meant a criticism and resistance to Empire. My femaleness, brownness, “immigrant-ness,” “Muslim-ness,” etc., did not factor into the equation. In other words, my political views were not guided by personal characteristics like race and gender. I was and continue to be acutely aware that, despite certain differences, what the vast majority of people share in common is that the current militarized global economic Empire is screwing us all.[1]

And, once upon a time, the radical left held similar views and points of criticism. But as the radical anti-Empire left morphed into the mainstream liberal “left,” identity politics, political correctness, and the protection of personal feelings came to replace big picture politico-economic analysis and opposition.

Nowhere is this more evident than among western mainstream liberal feminists, whose contemporary “political analysis” seems to stop at slut marching. To these identity politics obsessed individuals, not voting for Hillary Clinton makes you “anti-women.” And now they are literally freaking out over her defeat. All over the Internet, young liberal feminists are threatening to move to Canada in the wake of the US election. Please do not come to Canada, ladies, we don’t need any more clueless people.

In what world does Hillary’s vagina acquit her of her war mongering, criminal behaviour? If anyone was likely to start World War III it was Hillary Clinton. Hillary is a neocon, war machine military industrial complex, and global empire accomplice of the highest order. By comparison, Donald Trump’s stance on foreign war and the military industrial complex has been seemingly critical. How does that make him more likely to start WWIII? It is not rational to think that. And it is not rational to support a candidate simply because they are a woman. This reflects one of the many follies of identity politics, it excuses the crimes of people like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama–which includes the slaughter of innocent women and people of colour abroad–based on their gender or race. [2]

Anyone who genuinely believes that Hillary Clinton was going to be a positive force in the world—despite her war mongering track record—simply because she is female (a powerful and powerfully connected female member of the elite, but hey, still a woman) needs a reality check.

I will continue this discussion, and will explore the hopeful eventual demise of liberal identity politics (i.e., the “fake left” or the establishment left) in future articles.

Notes

[1] The problem with identity politics is that, while it claims to be about equality, it’s emphasis on difference serves to divide people (men vs women, blacks vs. whites) and distract us from the larger issues and problems that unite us, regardless of our differences. Identity politics–while it may have started with good intentions–allows elites to divide and rule, while also distracting us from issues to do with class and economics.

[2] I should also point out that Trump managed to galvanize a type of white identity politics around issues of employment and illegal immigration. Here, class issues (i.e., unemployment, loss of jobs) were interpreted  as “white issues.” So identity politics is not something that only manifests on the liberal left.

Donald Trump Wins US Presidency: A Blow to the Global Establishment…or Its Latest Iteration?

trump

In this article I’m breaking a personal vow. It is a vow that I never made publicly but kept internally for a decade or more, probably since around 9/11. Anyone who has followed my writing over the years may have noticed that I rarely comment on American politics. While I have written widely on US foreign policy, I almost never write or talk about US internal or domestic politics.

I have long understood the US administration(s)—with the exception of JFK’s brief tenure—to be a puppet show that is two-parts smoke screen, one-part entertainment and one-part distraction from the neo-con, war mongering, globalist deep state that actually calls the shots. This is so true for me that when other people talk about US politics with deep seriousness—i.e., as if political candidates, parties, democracy, a free press, etc., actually matter or exist in the US—I almost automatically tune out. While all politics is theatre to a certain extent, the US is exceptional in this regard. And the notion that there is much that is real, authentic or autonomous in US government and politics is so foreign to me that I cannot connect to it, or respond to it, with much seriousness.

With all that said, today I break my silence, in order to comment briefly on the 2016 US presidential election in the aftermath of Trump’s victory. At the beginning of this presidential campaign, I thought Donald Trump’s candidacy might be a publicity stunt; like a bombastic prime time reality show. But I was aware that the hard-core neocon, war mongering Hilary Clinton was the real danger, in terms of foreign policy and international politics. Her policies and past crimes are completely in-line with the current US-imperial agenda of endless war and military might, and this makes her far far more dangerous than Trump. It also made her far more likely to win the election, I presumed. Continue reading

The Structural Appeal of the EUT: Connectivity and the Electric Universe

andromedagalex_2048

This is the second article in my series on the appeal of the electric universe theory (EUT) to non-scientists, like myself. I want to note that what I mean by “non-scientist” is someone who is interested in subjects related to the sciences but does not have formal scientific training and is not particularly comfortable with mathematics and scientific jargon. This is how I approach the EUT and what follows are my personal interpretations and observations. My approach to the electric universe reflects my own background and interests as a researcher in the Humanities, a sociopolitical critic, a discourse analyst, and a performance poet. My approach may not reflect that of others but could open certain doors and pathways for further exploration and discussion of the electric universe theory for some.

In a piece I first wrote on the subject, I state that, for me, the “non-scientific” appeal of the EUT can be broken down into the three categories: historical, structural, and discursive. I explored the historical category in my previous post. In today’s post I explore the structural (or systemic) category at greater length.

The structural/systemic component of the EUT comprises a vast area of research within the scientific realm, in that it deals with cosmology and astrophysics, among other things. At the same time, what it posits about the nature and structure of the universe opens up avenues of interest and investigation for both scientists and non-scientists alike. So what exactly does the electric universe theory say about the structure of the universe and why should it be of interest to someone such as myself? Continue reading

From “Mere Folklore” to Cosmology: The Historical Appeal of the Electric Universe

anthony-peratt-part-3-screen-shot-2016-04-28-at-6-31-52-pm-550x365

Ancient etchings that resemble a modern plasma formation are found all over the globe

 

 

This is a long-overdue follow up on my last post. Last month I wrote a piece on the appeal of the electric universe theory (EUT) to non-scientists, such as myself. I broke it down into three categories—historical, structural/systemic, and discursive/discourse—and planned to revisit each category individually later on. In today’s post I will discuss the historical appeal of the EUT in greater detail.

One of the biggest appeals of the EUT is that it unabashedly looks to the past to give us answers about our relationship to the cosmos as well as the scientific possibilities for the future. The EUT draws on people like Immanuel Velikovsky whose work, while it did not directly deal with the eclectic universe, was historically among the few to introduce the unconventional notion that there are electromagnetic forces in the solar system that counteract, or even supersede, gravity. According to Velikovsky the earth has suffered natural catastrophes on a global scale, both before and during humankind’s recorded history. Velikovsky held that the causes of these natural catastrophes were close encounters between the Earth and other bodies within the solar system such as the present day planets Saturn, Jupiter, Venus, and Mars, these bodies having moved upon different orbits within human memory. To explain the fact that these changes to the configuration of the solar system seem to violate established laws of physics, Velikovsky posited a role for electromagnetic forces in counteracting gravity and orbital mechanics. [1] Continue reading

Why the Electric Universe Matters to Non-Scientists: Part Two

electric sky

This is part two of my follow up article on the 2016 Electric Universe Conference. In the previous post I gave my general impression of the conference and began to discuss the possible appeal of the electric universe theory (EUT) to non-scientists. This post is a continuation of that discussion. Before I proceed, I want to stress that I am not a scientist and am not qualified to speak about the EUT scientifically. As a scholar in the social sciences and humanities, I’m interested in the philosophical and socio-historical implications of the electric universe theory. My perspective deals with the broader, non-technical appeal of the EUT, as I understand it.

In the previous post I state that the non-scientific appeal of the EUT can be broken down into the three categories: historical, structural/systemic, and discursive. These are categories that anyone can access as analytical tools by which to explore the electric universe as a truer explanation for the cosmos. I describe each of these categories briefly in the subsequent paragraphs and will follow up with a separate post for each category in the coming weeks. Continue reading

Follow Up on the Electric Universe Conference: Why the Electric Universe Matters to Non-Scientists

cosmic-electricity

This post is a long overdue follow-up on the Electric Universe conference I attended and presented at in Arizona in mid June. For a brief summary of what the electric universe theory (EUT) is about, see the previous electric universe post and or visit the Thunderbolts Projects website. This post is split into two parts. The first part gives my general feedback on the 2016 Electric Universe conference. The second part explores why the EUT matters to non-scientists, such as myself. As this is a long discussion, it will be presented over two separate posts.

Part I. EU 2016

When I was first invited to present EU-inspired spoken word poetry at the conference I had no idea what to expect. My first thought was that I might be out of my element because I do not have a background in science. One of the organizers, Jean Hafner, kindly assured me that the EUT is interdisciplinary and attracts people from all walks of life, and that is exactly what I found. While the EUT deals largely with cosmological science, I met people from all walks of life, from mechanical and electrical engineers and physicists to filmmakers, writers and people in the healing arts. As promised, the conference was “an interdisciplinary adventure.” Continue reading

Turkey Coup’s Social Fallout: Secular Population in Danger?

Women's Rights TurkeyAs a “secular Muslim” (I use that term loosely, as more of a cultural description because I do not practice organized religion) I am rather perplexed by the social fallout of the failed military coup in Turkey. While it remains to be proven, Erdogan has officially blamed the coup attempt on the US-backed, self-exiled hard-line Islamist Fethullah Gulen. Gulen is a former political ally of Erdogan and is just as radical—if not more so—an Islamist as Erdogan and his AKP party. If Gulen (with help from the US) was indeed behind the coup attempt, then it is a case of Islamist vs. Islamist and not secular factions within the state trying to take the country back from Erdogan and the Islamists (as many initially thought).

Even though it may be a case of Islamists vs. other Islamists, it appears that the social fallout will be felt most among the secular, moderate and or non-religious people of Turkey. These are the reports I am reading in some media outlets and receiving from Turkish friends in Istanbul and Ankara, most of them artists, writers and intellectuals. While the secular demographic are not “to blame” for the coup, the failed coup has emboldened the local Islamists against them in frightening ways. As Patrick Cockburn reports, one female journalist and photographer felt scared to walk through Taksim Sqaure—Istanbul’s tourism and cultural hub—recently because of her non-religious attire: “I was so scared because all the women there looked at me as if I was a demon. The men said that ‘if you go on dressing like that you deserve to die’. Most people there were carrying red Turkish flags, but there were some black flags with Arabic writing on them like you see in Daesh (Isis) videos” [1] [2]. Continue reading

Turkey After the Coup: Erdogan Sucks Up to Russia as He Loses Favour with the West?

small Putin

With many predicting that the failed coup attempt in Turkey will push Erdogan towards Iran and Russia, I find myself having mixed thoughts. The very first thought is that the only place Erdogan should be at the moment is paying the ultimate price. Erdogan’s crimes are numerous and unforgivable, especially the role he played in attempting to destroy Syria and flooding the region with radical, rabid, violent, barbaric, heavily armed, western-backed, Islamist mercenary thugs. He has been a long time supporter and puppet of western Empire and has been instrumental in the rise of Sunni radicalism in the Middle East. Continue reading

Failed Turkey Coup Aftermath: Erdogan Using Coup to go on a Purging Rampage.

TurkeyLike many analysts, the attempted coup in Turkey took me very much by surprise.I did not know what to make of it initially and my early elation at the possibility of the Erdogan being ousted was tempered with equal trepidation that this may be a US or NATO backed coup that would see Erdogan replaced—for failing in Syria and for his recent overtures to Russia—by a far more troublesome and more pro-US Islamist, Fethullah Gülen. Then, as the events unfolded, and Erdogan was able to quickly subdue the coup and play it very much to his advantage, I began to suspect that he may have had some hand in it or, more likely, had some foreknowledge of the coup and was able to use it as a pretext to eliminate his enemies—real and imagined—within the state. While we may never know for sure, there is no denying that the coup has hitherto turned out to be a political gift horse for Erdogan and his rabid Islamists. Continue reading