Chris Hedges on Capitalism

Chris Hedges is one of those journalists worth listening to for his erudition, articulacy and integrity. The interviewer tries to argue that capitalism drives innovation that is lifting people out of poverty. Chris says that this is true for a ‘neo-feudal’ elite but that for the masses capitalism is a system that oppresses and makes their lives worse. He argues that people in the US are worse off than they were forty years ago.

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Bombing ISIS

This week the British Parliament voted to join the US in bombing Islamic State (IS or ISIS) in Iraq. This is wrong because:

1. It is part of an ongoing plan for changing the shape of the Middle East including the eventual bombing of Syria and the overthrow of Assad. Cameron said that any planned British bombing of Syria would require Parliamentary approval but that he reserved the right to bomb Syria if it was immediately necessary in the national interest. Miliband apparently supports this.

2. It is stupid and hubristic to intervene militarily in a region where all UK and US intervention have resulted in greater instability, death and destruction. That is, it is stupid if it is intended to do good for the people of the region. Given the destructive means and ends of prior interventions one must be forgiven for thinking that the motives are less than benign.

3. Cameron admits that this will be a ‘generational struggle’, in other words the people of the region are being condemned to continuing chaos and destruction. There is no ‘roadmap’ here to achieving stability.

4. It is only by setting up mechanisms for dialogue between nations in the region whether they are Sunni, Shia or secular and establishing protocols for conflict resolution that peace will have a chance. The FUKUS (France UK US) interventions have not been about promoting dialogue but have fuelled division and destruction.

The UK Parliament is increasingly giving the appearance of being irrational and irrelevant and it is easy to understand why so many people view them with utter cynicism. I agree with George Galloway except on his concluding point that Saudi Arabia should be encouraged to do the bombing .. there should be no bombing in Syria without the consent and involvement of the Syrian government.

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