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246 Greek University Economic Professors sign declaration to urge Greeks to vote YES in referendum

Declaration of Professors of Economics at Greek Universities on the referendum as to whether Greece should accept the final proposal delivered by EU/Troika creditors.

Alex Christoforou

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The following declaration is signed by 246 professors at Economics Schools and Universities in Greece. By this declaration, we want to express our great distress about the latest developments in our country. We strongly believe that, at this crucial point, it is of paramount importance to avoid excesses, to show national cohesion, to preserve our position in the Eurozone and the EU, and to regain our credibility in the international community. Further, the fiscal consolidation program, drawn jointly with our EU partners and other creditors like the IMF, should be characterized by the lowest possible recessionary consequences and the highest possible level of social protection, aiming at growth and job creation in the private sector as soon as possible. The prolonged political uncertainty has led the economy to a renewed recession, has reversed the decline in unemployment, has lowered tax revenue and has widened the fiscal gap.

Taking into account that the proposals of our creditors and the Greek government were converging until last Friday, we believe that what is really at stake in the coming Referendum, irrespective of the precise formulation of the question, is whether Greece will remain, or not, in the Eurozone and, possibly, whether it will remain in the EU itself.

The funding of the Greek economy by Eurozone countries was suspended last weekend after the Greek government abandoned the negotiations at a time when no alternative funding opportunities seem to be available. We are already at the first stage of a very slippery process that, if not urgently reversed, will lead to a chaotic debt default and exit from the Eurozone. Bank closures and capital controls (that had been so far avoided throughout the deep crisis) constitute only the first rupture from the Eurozone and the EU itself

We believe that the recessionary consequences of debt default and exit from the Eurozone, especially in such a chaotic and superficial way, will be much worse than the effects of a painful compromise with our EU partners and the IMF. A disorderly break of our country from the core of Europe will have disastrous economic, social, political and geopolitical consequences.

Short-run consequences: Bank closures, cut in the value of deposits, sharp decline in tourism, shortages of basic consumer goods and raw materials, black market, hyperinflation, firm bankruptcies and a big rise in unemployment, rapid fall in real wages and the real value of pensions, deep recession and serious problems in the functioning of public health care and defense, social unrest.

Medium-term consequences: international isolation of the country, no access to international capital markets for several years, low growth and anemic investment, high unemployment combined with high inflation rates, suspension of the flow of EU structural funds, significant decline in the standard of living, poor provision of basic public goods and services.

All these developments should not have happened after 5 years of big sacrifices by the Greek people, and a tremendous fiscal adjustment, right at the time when the economy was starting to recover, with favourable expectations for further easing in the terms of our public debt obligations. They should not have happened in a period when the European economy is returning to positive growth rates and other peripheral euro countries start growing and reducing unemployment. They should not have happened in a favorable time for further EU integration that will benefit the South and when the ECB facilitates growth with excess liquidity and zero interest rates.

Leaving the Eurozone, especially with this chaotic and superficial way, would likely lead to a process of leaving the EU too, with unpredictable and disastrous consequences for the national security and the democratic stability of our country.

For all these reasons, Greece must remain in the core of the EU, which is the Eurozone.

For all these reasons, our unequivocal answer to the real question of the referendum is: YES. Yes, to Europe.

1. Adam Αntonis University of Ioannina

2. Aggelidis Timotheos University of Peloponnese

3. Alexakis Christos University of Pireaus

4. Alexakis Panagiotis Athens University

5. Anagnostou Aggeliki University of Thessaly

6. Andoniou Fabio University of Ioannina

7. Andronikidis Αndreas University of Macedonia

8. Androutsopoulos Ion Athens University of Economics and Business

9. Androutsopoulos Κonstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

10. Apergis Νikolaos University of Pireaus

11. Apostolopoulos Thodoros Athens University of Economics and Business

12. Argouslidis Paris Athens University of Economics and Business

13. Arvanitis Stelios Athens University of Economics and Business

14. Atsalakis George Polytechnic of Crete

15. Avlonitis George Athens University of Economics and Business

16. Balios Dimitris Athens University

17. Ballas Apostolos Athens University of Economics and Business

18. Baltas Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

19. Baltas Nikolaos Athens University of Economics and Business

20. Basiakos Ioannis Athens University

21. Bellou Victoria University of Thessaly

22. Benos Nikos University of Ioannina

23. Benos Theofanis University of Pireaus

24. Billias Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

25. Bitros Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

26. Blavoukos Spyros Athens University of Economics and Business

27. Bourantas Dimitris Athens University of Economics and Business

28. Bourantonis Dimitris Athens University of Economics and Business

29. Bournova Eugenia Athens University

30. Brisimis Sofoklis University of Pireaus

31. Chalamandaris George Athens University of Economics and Business

32. Chalkias Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

33. Charitakis Nikos Athens University

34. Chletsos Michael University of Ioannina

35. Chlomoudis Kostas University of Pireaus

36. Chortareas George Athens University

37. Chouliaras Asteris University of Peloponnese

38. Christopoulos Dimitris Panteion University

39. Christopoulou Sofia University of Macedonia

40. Christou George Athens University of Economics and Business

41. Damianos Dimitris Agricultural University of Athens

42. Dedoulis Manolis Athens University of Economics and Business

43. Delipalla Sofia University of Macedonia

44. Demoirakos Efthymios Athens University of Economics and Business

45. Demos Antonis Athens University of Economics and Business

46. Demousis Michalis University of Patras

47. Dialla Violetta Athens University

48. Dimeli Sofia Athens University of Economics and Business

49. Dimitriadi Zoi University of Macedonia

50. Dotsis Georgios Athens University

51. Doukidis Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

52. Drakos Anastasios Athens University of Economics and Business

53. Economides George Athens University of Economics and Business

54. Economidou Claire University of Pireaus

55. Economou Athina University of Thessaly

56. Efstratoglou Sofia Agricultural University of Athens

57. Eleftheriou Kostas University of Pireaus

58. Fountas Stylianos University of Macedonia

59. Gaganis Chrysovalantis Univiversity of Crete

60. Gatsios Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

61. Genakos Christos Athens University of Economics and Business

62. Genius Margarita University of Crete

63. Georgiou Andreas University of Macedonia

64. Georgoutsos Dimitrios Athens University of Economics and Business

65. Giaglis Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

66. Giamouridis Daniel Athens University of Economics and Business

67. Giannakopoulos Nikos University of Patras

68. Giannelis Dimitrios University of Pireaus

69. Giannelis Νikos University of Crete

70. Giotopoulos Ioannis University of Peloponnese

71. Glavinis Panayotis Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

72. Griva Krina University of Ioannina

73. Hassid Josef University of Pireaus

74. Hatziantoniou Damianos Athens University of Economics and Business

75. Hatzipanayotou Panos Athens University of Economics and Business

76. Hatzis Aristides Athens University

77. Iatridis George University of Thessaly

78. Ifantopoulos Ioannis Athens University

79. Indounas Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

80. Ioannidis Antonis Athens University of Economics and Business

81. Ioannidis Stavros Panteion University

82. Ioannou Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

83. Iordanoglou Chrysafis Panteion University

84. Ireiotis Nikolaos Athens University

85. Kainourgios Dimitris Athens University

86. Kalamboukis Theodoros Athens University of Economics and Business

87. Kalogirou Ioannis Metsovio Polytechnic University

88. Kalyvitis Sarantis Athens University of Economics and Business

89. Kammas Pantelis University of Ioannina

90. Karagiannis Ioannis University of Macedonia

91. Karamanis Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

92. Karaveli Eleni Athens University of Economics and Business

93. Karkalakos Sotiris University of Pireaus

94. Kasimatis Konstantinos Athens University of Economics and Business

95. Katranidis Stelios University of Macedonia

96. Katsimi Margarita Athens University of Economics and Business

97. Kavousanos Emmanouil Athens University of Economics and Business

98. Kazakos Panos Athens University

99. Koen Sandra Athens University of Economics and Business

100. Kollias Christos University of Thessaly

101. Konstantinou Panagiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

102. Konstantopoulos Panos Athens University of Economics and Business

103. Kontouli Maria University of Peloponnese

104. Korliras Panagiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

105. Kosteletou Nikolina Athens University

106. Kostis Kostas Athens University

107. Kotsios Stelios Athens University

108. Kottaridi Konstantina University of Pireaus

109. Koundouri Phoebe Athens University of Economics and Business

110. Kouretas Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

111. Kritikos Manolis Athens University of Economics and Business

112. Kyriazidou Katerina Athens University of Economics and Business

113. Kyriazis Nikolaos University of Thessaly

114. Kyriazis Dimitris University of Pireaus

115. Kyritsis Ioannis Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

116. Kyrkillis Dimitris University of Macedonia

117. Ladi Stella Panteion University

118. Lekakos Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

119. Leledakis Georgios Athens University of Economics and Business

120. Leventakis Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

121. Liargovas Panagiotis University of Peloponnese

122. Liaropoulos Lykourgos Athens University

123. Loizidis Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

124. Lolos Sarantis Panteion University

125. Louri Eleni Athens University of Economics and Business

126. Louridas Pangiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

127. Malevris Nikos Athens University of Economics and Business

128. Malliaris Petros University of Pireaus

129. Matsagganis Manos Athens University of Economics and Business

130. Mergos Giorgos University of Athens

131. Metaxas Theodoros University of Thessaly

132. Miaouli Natasha Athens University of Economics and Business

133. Milliou Chrisovalantou Athens University of Economics and Business

134. Mylonas Nikolaos Athens University

135. Mylonidis Nikos University of Ioannina

136. Nikas Christos University of Macedonia

137. Nikolaou Ioannis Athens University of Economics and Business

138. Nikoleris Theodoros Athens University

139. Nikolopoulos Andreas Athens University of Economics and Business

140. Nikolotsa Daphni University of Crete

141. O’Donnel Owen University of Macedonia

142. Pagkratis Spiros Athens University of Economics and Business

143. Pagoulatos Giorgos Athens University of Economics and Business

144. Palis Thanos Aegean University

145. Palivos Theodoros Athens University of Economics and Business

146. Panagiotopoulou Lida Athens University of Economics and Business

147. Panagiotou Dimitris University of Ioannina

148. Panagopoulos Andreas University of Crete

149. Pantelides Theologos University of Macedonia

150. Papachristou Giorgos Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

151. Papadakis Vassilios Athens University of Economics and Business

152. Papadamou Stephanos University of Thessaly

153. Papadimitriou Stratos University of Pireaus

154. Papadopoulos Hrisoleon Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

155. Papadopoulos Konstantinos Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

156. Papalexandri Nancy Athens University of Economics and Business

157. Papanastasopoulos Giorgos University of Pireaus

158. Papandreou Andreas Athens University

159. Papapanagos Harris University of Macedonia

160. Papastathopoulou Polina Athens University of Economics and Business

161. Papathanassiou Iason University of Macedonia

162. Papavasiliou Nikolaos Athens University of Economics and Business

163. Papoulias Dimitris Athens University

164. Paraskevopoulos Christos University of Macedonia

165. Pasiouras Photis Polytechnic of Crete

166. Patronis Vassilios University of Patras

167. Patsouratis Vassilis Athens University of Economics and Business

168. Pechlivanos Lampros Athens University of Economics and Business

169. Peka Oikonomou University of Pireaus

170. Pelagides Thodoris University of Pireaus

171. Petrakis Manolis University of Crete

172. Petridou Evgenia Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

173. Philippopoulos Apostolis Athens University of Economics and Business

174. Pittis Nikitas University of Pireaus

175. Polemis Michalis University of Pireaus

176. Pollalis Ioannis University of Pireaus

177. Pournarakis Efthimios Athens University of Economics and Business

178. Pragidis Ioannis Democritus University of Thrace

179. Pramatari Katerina Athens University of Economics and Business

180. Psaltopoulos Dimitris University of Patras

181. Psarianos Jacob University of Thessaly

182. Psillaki Maria University of Pireaus

183. Raikou Katerina University of Pireaus

184. Repas Panagiotis Panteion University

185. Repoussis Panagiotis Athens University of Economics and Business

186. Riginos Michalis Athens University

187. Rigopoulou Eirini Athens University of Economics and Business

188. Roumanias Kostas Athens University of Economics and Business

189. Sakellaris Ploutarxos Athens University of Economics and Business

190. Sakellis Yiannis Panteion University

191. Samitas Aristides Aegean University

192. Sarris Alexandros Athens University

193. Sartzetakis Efthimios University of Macedonia

194. Sideropoulos Moissis Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

195. Siourounis Grigoris Panteion University

196. Siris Vasilios Athens University of Economics and Business

197. Sklavou Helen Athens University of Economics and Business

198. Sklias Pantelis University of Peloponnese

199. Skordile Sofia Harokopio University

200. Skountzos Theodoros University of Pireaus

201. Skouras Athanassios Athens University of Economics and Business

202. Skouras Dimitris University of Patras

203. Skouras Spyros Athens University of Economics and Business

204. Soderquist Klas Athens University of Economics and Business

205. Sorros Ιoannis University of Pireaus

206. Sotiropoulos Dimitris Athens University

207. Spinellis Diomidis Athens University of Economics and Business

208. Spyrou Spyros Athens University of Economics and Business

209. Stamatopoulos George University of Crete

210. Stathakopoulos Vlasios Athens University of Economics and Business

211. Stavrakoudis Athanassios University of Ioannina

212. Symeonidis Spyros University of Ioannina

213. Tarantilis Christos Athens University of Economics and Business

214. Tatsos Nikos Panteion University

215. Thalassinos Lefteris University of Pireaus

216. Thomadakis Stavros Athens University

217. Thomakos Dimitrios University of Peloponnese

218. Tinios Plato University of Pireaus

219. Topaloglou Nicholas Athens University of Economics and Business

220. Toumpis Stauros Athens University of Economics and Business

221. Tragaki Alexandra Harokopio University

222. Tsakanikas Angelos Metsovio Polytechnic University

223. Tsakiris Nikos University of Ioannina

224. Tsakloglou Panos Athens University of Economics and Business

225. Tsamourgelis Ioannis Aegean University

226. Tsintzos Panagiotis Democritus University of Thrace

227. Tsionas Efthymios Athens University of Economics and Business

228. Tsipouri Lena Athens University

229. Tsiritakis Emmanuel University of Pireaus

230. Tsoukalis Loukas Athens University

231. Tzavalis Elias Athens University of Economics and Business

232. Tzelepis Dimitrios University of Patras

233. Tzionas Ioannis University of Macedonia

234. Tzouvelekas Vangelis University of Crete

235. Vakola Maria Athens University of Economics and Business

236. Varsakelis Νikos Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

237. Vassilatos Vaggelis Athens University of Economics and Business

238. Veletzas Κostas University of Macedonia

239. Venetis Ioannis University of Patras

240. Vettas Νikolaos Athens University of Economics and Business

241. Voudouri Irini Athens University of Economics and Business

242. Xanthakis Manolis Athens University

243. Xepapadeas Tasos Athens University of Economics and Business

244. Zacharias Lefteris Athens University of Economics and Business

245. Zopounidis Konstantinos Polytechnic of Crete

246. Zoumboulakis Michalis University of Thessaly

References:

http://www.ekathimerini.com/198826/article/ekathimerini/news/declaration-of-professors-of-economics-at-greek-universities-on-the-referendum

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The real reason Western media & CIA turned against Saudi MBS

The problem with MBS isn’t that he is a mass murdering war criminal, it is that he is too “independent” for the United States’ liking.

RT

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Via RT…


Forces are aligning against Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, lead by elements within the CIA and strong players in the mainstream media. But what is really behind this deterioration in relationship, and what are its implications?

Following the brutal murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, western media and various entities, including the CIA, appear to have turned their back on Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman (MBS). In response to the scandal, the Guardian released a video which its celebutante, Owen Jones, captioned“Saudi Arabia is one of the biggest threats on Earth. Time to stop propping up its repulsive regime.”

The Guardian was not alone in its condemnation. “It’s high time to end Saudi impunity,” wrote Hana Al-Khamri in Al-Jazeera. “It’s time for Saudi Arabia to tell the truth on Jamal Khashoggi,” the Washington Post’s Editorial Board argued. Politico called it “the tragedy of Jamal Khashoggi.”

Even shadowy think-tanks like the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and the Atlantic Council released articles criticising Saudi Arabia in the wake of Khashoggi’s death.

A number of companies began backing away from Saudi money after the journalist’s death, including the world’s largest media companies such as the New York Times, the Economist’s editor-in-chief Zanny Minton Beddoes, Arianna Huffington, CNN, CNBC, the Financial Times, Bloomberg, Google Cloud CEO, just to name a few.

The CIA concluded that MBS personally ordered Khashoggi’s death, and was reportedly quite open in its provision of this assessment. Antonio Guterres, secretary-general of the UN, also took time out of his schedule to express concern over Saudi Arabia’s confirmation of the killing.

At the time of the scandal, former CIA director John Brennan went on MSNBC to state that the Khashoggi’s death would be the downfall of MBS. Furthermore, the US Senate just voted in favour of ending American involvement in Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen (a somewhat symbolic victory, though this is a topic for another article), but nonetheless was a clear stab at MBS personally.

The only person who appeared to continue to uphold America’s unfaltering support for MBS, even after all the publicly made evidence against MBS, was the US president himself. So after years of bombarding Yemen, sponsoring terror groups across the Middle East, Asia, the Pacific and beyond, why is it only now that there has been mounting opposition to Saudi Arabia’s leadership? Let’s just bear in mind that western media had spent years investing in a heavy PR campaign to paint MBS as a “reformer.”

Former national security adviser under Barack Obama’s second term, Susan Rice, wrote an article in the New York Times, in which she called MBS a “partner we can’t depend on.” Rice concludes that MBS is “not and can no longer be viewed as a reliable partner of the United States and our allies.” But why is this? Is it because MBS is responsible for some of the most egregious human rights abuses inside his own kingdom as well as in Yemen? Is it because of MBS’ support for groups such as ISIS and al-Qaeda? No, according to Rice, we “should not rupture our important relationship with the kingdom, but we must make it clear it cannot be business as usual so long as Prince Mohammad continues to wield unlimited power.”

One will observe that the latter segment of Rice’s article almost mirrors former CIA director Brennan’s word on MSNBC word for word who stated that:

“I think ultimately this is going to come out. And it’s very important for us to maintain the relations with Saudi Arabia. And if it’s Mohammed bin Salman who’s the cancer here, well, we need to be able to find ways to eliminate the cancer and to move forward with this relationship that is critical to regional stability and our national interests.”

In reality, this is probably the issue that western media and government advisors have taken up with MBS. Aside from the fact he allegedly held a huge hand in the brutal murder of one of their own establishment journalists (Saudi Arabia reportedly tortured and killed another journalist not long after Khashoggi, but western media was eerily silent on this incident) MBS is not opposed for his reckless disregard for human rights. With insight into Rice’s mindset, we actually learn that if the US were to punish MBS, he would be likely to “behave more irresponsibly to demonstrate his independence and exact retribution against his erstwhile Western partners.”

You see, the problem with MBS isn’t that he is a mass murdering war criminal, it is that he is too “independent” for the United States’ liking.

Last week, Saudi Arabia and the other major oil producers met in Vienna at the year’s final big OPEC meeting of the year. As Foreign Policy notes, Saudi Arabia remains the largest oil producer inside OPEC but has to contend with the US and Russia who are “pumping oil at record levels.” Together, the three countries are the world’s biggest oil producers, meaning any coordinated decision made between these three nations can be somewhat monumental.

However, it appears that one of these three nations will end up drawing the short end of the stick as the other two begin forming a closer alliance. As Foreign Policy explains:

“But Saudi Arabia has bigger game in mind at Vienna than just stabilizing oil prices. Recognizing that it can’t shape the global oil market by itself anymore but rather needs the cooperation of Russia, Saudi Arabia is hoping to formalize an ad hoc agreement between OPEC and Moscow that began in 2016, a time when dirt-cheap oil also posed a threat to oil-dependent regimes. That informal agreement expires at the end of the year, but the Saudis would like to make Russia’s participation with the cartel more permanent.”

Russian officials have been signalling their intention to formalise this agreement for quite some time now. Given the hysteria in western media about any and all things Russian, it is not too much of a stretch to suggest that this is the kind of news that is not sitting too well with the powers-that-be.

Earlier this year, Russia and Saudi Arabia announced that it would “institutionalize” the two-year-old bilateral agreement to coordinate oil production targets in order to maintain an edge on the global market.

While US president Trump has been supportive and incredibly defensive of MBS during this “crisis”, the truth is that the US only has itself to blame. It was not all too long ago that Trump announced that he had told Saudi King Salman that his kingdom would not last two weeks without US support.

Saudi Arabia is learning for themselves quite quickly that, ultimately, it may pay not to have all its eggs in one geopolitical superpower basket.

Saudi Arabia has been increasingly interested in Moscow since King Salman made a historic visit to Moscow in October 2017. While Trump has openly bragged about his record-breaking arms deals with the Saudis, the blunt truth is that the $110 billion arms agreements were reportedly only ever letters of interest or intent, but not actual contracts. As such, the US-Saudi arms deal is still yet to be locked in, all the while Saudi Arabia is negotiating with Russia for its S-400 air defence system. This is, as the Washington Post notes, despite repeated US requests to Saudi Arabia for it disavow its interest in Russia’s arms.

The economic threat that an “independent” Saudi Arabia under MBS’ leadership poses to Washington runs deeper than meets the eye and may indeed have a domino effect. According to CNN, Russia and Saudi Arabia “are engaged in an intense battle over who will be the top supplier to China, a major energy importer with an insatiable appetite for crude.”

The unveiling of China’s petro-yuan poses a major headache for Washington and its control over Saudi Arabia as well.According to Carl Weinberg, chief economist and managing director at High-Frequency Economics, China will “compel”Saudi Arabia to trade oil in Chinese yuan instead of US dollars. One must bear in mind that China has now surpassed the US as the “biggest oil importer on the planet,” these direct attacks on the US dollar will have huge implications for its current world reserve status.

If Saudi Arabia jumps on board China’s petro-yuan, the rest of OPEC will eventually follow, and the US might be left with no choice but to declare all of these countries in need of some vital freedom and democracy.

Therefore, ousting MBS and replacing him with a Crown Prince who doesn’t stray too far from the tree that is US imperialism may put a dent in pending relationships with Saudi Arabia and Washington’s adversaries, Russia and China.

Once we get over the certainty that the US media and the CIA are not against MBS for his long-list of human rights abuses, the question then becomes: why – why now, and in this manner, have they decided to put the spotlight on MBS and expose him exactly for what he is.

Clearly, the driving force behind this media outrage is a bit more complex than first meets the eye.

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The Indiscreet Charm of the Gilets Jaunes

Nothing scares the Identity Politics Left quite like an actual working class uprising.

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Authored (satirically) by CJ Hopkins via The Unz Review:


So it appears the privatization of France isn’t going quite as smoothly as planned. As I assume you are aware, for over a month now, the gilets jaunes (or “yellow vests”), a multiplicitous, leaderless, extremely pissed off, confederation of working class persons, have been conducting a series of lively protests in cities and towns throughout the country to express their displeasure with Emmanuel Macron and his efforts to transform their society into an American-style neo-feudal dystopia. Highways have been blocked, toll booths commandeered, luxury automobiles set on fire, and shopping on the Champs-Élysées disrupted. What began as a suburban tax revolt has morphed into a bona fide working class uprising.

It took a while for “the Golden Boy of Europe” to fully appreciate what was happening. In the tradition of his predecessor, Louis XVI, Macron initially responded to the gilets jaunes by inviting a delegation of Le Monde reporters to laud his renovation of the Elysée Palace, making the occasional condescending comment, and otherwise completely ignoring them. That was back in late November. Last Saturday, he locked down central Paris, mobilized a literal army of riot cops, “preventatively arrested” hundreds of citizens, including suspected “extremist students,” and sent in the armored military vehicles.

The English-language corporate media, after doing their best not to cover these protests (and, instead, to keep the American and British publics focused on imaginary Russians), have been forced to now begin the delicate process of delegitimizing the gilets jaunes without infuriating the the entire population of France and inciting the British and American proletariats to go out and start setting cars on fire. They got off to a bit of an awkward start.

For example, this piece by Angelique Chrisafis, The Guardian‘s Paris Bureau Chief, and her Twitter feed from the protests last Saturday. Somehow (probably a cock-up at headquarters), The Guardian honchos allowed Chrisafis to do some actual propaganda-free reporting (and some interviews with actual protesters) before they caught themselves and replaced her with Kim Willsher, who resumed The Guardian‘s usual neoliberal establishment-friendly narrative, which, in this case, entailed dividing the protesters into “real” gilets jaunes and “fake” gilet jaunes, and referring to the latter fictional group as “thuggish, extremist political agitators.”

By Sunday, the corporate media were insinuating that diabolical Russian Facebook bots had brainwashed the French into running amok, because who else could possibly be responsible? Certainly not the French people themselves! The French, as every American knows, are by nature a cowardly, cheese-eating people, who have never overthrown their rightful rulers, or publicly beheaded the aristocracy. No, the French were just sitting there, smoking like chimneys, and otherwise enjoying their debt-enslavement and the privatization of their social democracy, until they unsuspectingly logged onto Facebook and … BLAMMO, the Russian hackers got them!

Bloomberg is reporting that French authorities have opened a probe into Russian interference (in the middle of which report, for no apparent reason, a gigantic photo of Le Pen is featured, presumably just to give it that “Nazi” flavor). According to “analysis seen by The Times,” Russia-linked social media accounts have been “amplifying” the “chaos” and “violence” by tweeting photos of gilets jaunes who the French police have savagely beaten or gratuitiously shot with “less-than-lethal projectiles.” “Are nationalists infiltrating the yellow vests?” the BBC Newsnight producers are wondering. According to Buzzfeed’s Ryan Broderick, “a beast born almost entirely from Facebook” is slouching toward … well, I’m not quite sure, the UK or even, God help us, America! And then there’s Max Boot, who is convinced he is being personally persecuted by Russian agents like Katie Hopkins, James Woods, Glenn Greenwald, and other high-ranking members of a worldwide conspiracy Boot refers to as the “Illiberal International” (but which regular readers of my column will recognize as the “Putin-Nazis“).

And, see, this is the problem the corporate media (and other staunch defenders of global neoliberalism) are facing with these gilets jaunes protests. They can’t get away with simply claiming that what is happening is not a working class uprising, so they have been forced to resort to these blatant absurdities. They know they need to delegitimize the gilets jaunes as soon as possible — the movement is already starting to spread — but the “Putin-Nazi” narrative they’ve been using on Trump, Corbyn, and other “populists” is just not working.

No one believes the Russians are behind this, not even the hacks who are paid to pretend they do. And the “fascism” hysteria is also bombing. Attempts to portray the gilets jaunes as Le Pen-sponsored fascists blew up in their faces. Obviously, the far-Right are part of these protests, as they would be in any broad working class uprising, but there are far too many socialists and anarchists (and just regular pissed-off working class people) involved for the media to paint them all as “Nazis.”

Which is not to say that the corporate media and prominent public intellectuals like Bernard-Henri Lévy will not continue to hammer away at the “fascism” hysteria, and demand that the “good” and “real” gilets jaunes suspend their protests against Macron until they have completely purged their movement of “fascists,” and “extremists,” and other dangerous elements, and have splintered it into a number of smaller, antagonistic ideological factions that can be more easily neutralized by the French authorities … because that’s what establishment intellectuals do.

We can expect to hear this line of reasoning, not just from establishment intellectuals like Lévy, but also from members of the Identity Politics Left, who are determined to prevent the working classes from rising up against global neoliberalism until they have cleansed their ranks of every last vestige of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, transphobia, and so on. These leftist gatekeepers have been struggling a bit to come up with a response to the gilets jaunes … a response that doesn’t make them sound like hypocrites. See, as leftists, they kind of need to express their support for a bona fide working class uprising. At the same time, they need to delegitimize it, because their primary adversaries are fascism, racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, and assorted other isms and phobias, not the neoliberal ruling classes.

Nothing scares the Identity Politics Left quite like an actual working class uprising. Witnessing the furious unwashed masses operating out there on their own, with no decent human restraint whatsoever, Identity Politics Leftists feel a sudden overwhelming urge to analyze, categorize, organize, sanitize, and otherwise correct and control them.

They can’t accept the fact that the actual, living, breathing working classes are messy, multiplicitous, inconsistent, and irreducible to any one ideology. Some of them are racists. Some are fascists. Others are communists, socialists, and anarchists. Many have no idea what they are, and don’t particularly care for any of these labels.This is what the actual working classes are … a big, contradictory collection of people who, in spite of all their differences, share one thing in common, that they are being screwed over by the ruling classes. I don’t know about you, but I consider myself one of them.

Where we go from here is anyone’s guess. According to The Guardian, as I am sitting here writing this, the whole of Europe is holding its breath in anticipation of the gilets jaunes’ response to Macron’s most recent attempt to appease them, this time with an extra hundred Euros a month, some minor tax concessions, and a Christmas bonus.

Something tells me it’s not going to work, but even if it does, and the gilets jaunes uprising ends, this messy, Western “populist” insurgency against global neoliberalism has clearly entered a new phase. Count on the global capitalist ruling classes to intensify their ongoing War on Dissent and their demonization of anyone opposing them (or contradicting their official narrative) as an “extremist,” a “fascist,” a “Russian agent,” and so on. I’m certainly looking forward to that, personally.

Oh… yeah, and I almost forgot, if you were wondering what you could get me for Christmas, I did some checking, and there appears to be a wide selection of yellow safety vests online for just a couple Euros.

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Washington Is Changing The World Order Against Its Own Interests

Any country sufficiently stupid to ally with the US is allied with a dead man walking.

Paul Craig Roberts

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Authored by Paul Craig Roberts:


The hubris and arrogance of Washington have been at work since the Clinton regime to destroy the power and relevance of the United States.

This website has an international audience. The most asked question from this audience is the world order. There is a realization that Washington’s control might weaken, a development people abroad see as hopeful. They ask me for verification of their hope.

Here is my answer:

The world order has already changed.  China has a larger and more powerful industrial and manufacturing based economy than the US, and China’s potential domestic consumer market is four times larger than that of the US. As economies are consumer based, China’s potential is an economy four times larger than that of the US.

Russia has a far more capable military with weapon systems unmatched by the US. The US is drowning in debt, and the illegal and irresponsible sanctions that Washington tries to impose on others are driving the world’s largest countries away from the use of the US dollar as world reserve currency and away from Western clearance systems such as SWIFT.  The United States already has one foot in the grave.  Any country sufficiently stupid to ally with the US is allied with a dead man walking.

President Eisenhower, a five-star general, warned Americans 57 years ago to no effect that the military/security complex was already a threat to the American people’s ability to control their government. Today the military/security complex is the Government. As Udo Ulfkotte documented in his book, Journalists for Hire: How the CIA buys the News—no you can’t buy a copy unless you can find a used copy in German in a German book store, the CIA has seen to that—journalism independent of official explanations no longer exists in the Western world.

Much of the world does not understand this. Aside from the material interests of Russian and Chinese capitalists, a portion of the youth of both superpowers, and also even in Iran, have succumbed to brainwashing by American propaganda. Gullible beyond belief, they are more loyal to America than they are to their own countries.

The United States itself is extremely unsuccessful, but its propaganda still rules the world. The consequence is that, based on its propagandistic success, Washington thinks it still holds the balance of economic and military power. This is a delusion that is leading Washington to nuclear war.

Considering the hypersonic speed, trajectory changeability and massive power of Russian nuclear weapons, war with Russia will result in nothing whatsoever being left of the US and its vassals, who sold out European peoples for Washington’s money.

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