Friday, February 24, 2017

N. Farage, the UK Independent Party leader claimed Malmo, Sweden, is now the "rape capital of Europe". The BBC has replied.
Cuts in corporate tax (that's assuming corporations are paying taxes). How is that even Nordic, Financial Times? One of the things that made Sweden as it is today was that the Social Democrats in the country imposed 40% corporate tax.
Slashing of 150,000 jobs and cuts in public spending? The recipe is more riots and more burning of cars. Thos who will lose their jobs could join the police to face the riots :)
Whether a right-wing or a far-right government, France will be heading towards serious social conflicts.

France: Macron's electoral programme

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The "British people" have accepted austerity imposed on them because of plunder carried out by the banks.

Now "the British people" will have to pay £50+ billion because of a blunder by Cameron and his allies. "The British people", I am almost cetain, will accept this.

Juncker, the European Commission president, adds insult to injury with a naive, poor reading of history by praising the criminal racist Churchill. "We need to settle our affairs not with our hearts full of a feeling of hostility, but with the knowledge that the continent owes a lot to the UK. Without Churchill, we would not be here - we mustn't forget that, but we mustn't be naive."

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Walter Benjamin states that "the tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the 'state of emergency' in which we live is not the exception but the rule. We must attain to a conception of history that is in keeping with this insight. Then we shall clearly realise that it is our task to bring about a real state of emergency, and this will improve our position in the struggle against fascism." In other words, all class society is a permanent state of emergency in which the rulers are always under threat. Fascism is thus not some sort of breakdown of tradition but a continuation of traditional class rule by other means. Overcoming it thus requires not just anti-fascist attitudes but also a destruction of its roots in class oppression. Or, as Horkheimer put it in 1939: "If you don't want to talk about capitalism then you had better keep quiet about fascism."  

Monday, February 20, 2017

160,000 march in Barcelona, Spanin demanding the government takes more refugees

I am surprised!

According to a poll by a Qatari institute and published by Aljazeera, 41% of the Spanish polled oppose Muslim refugees entering Europe.
"Sabsay invokes Wendy Brown’s understanding of liberal rights as that which we cannot not want. In her most recent book, Brown persuasively argues that neoliberalism undermines the very bases of liberal democracy, which, however, she insists, should remain the point of departure for those who oppose neoliberalism in order to bring about what liberalism promises but never delivers. I find this an inadequate framework, let alone an ideal political agenda to resist neoliberalism. Brown is not blind to the horrific record of liberal democracy on the question of race, gender, class, and governance more generally, but she still believes that liberal democracy carries “the language and promise of shared political equality, freedom, and popular sovereignty,” to which we must strive. I have always been wary of this dominant academic and intellectual preference for the language and promise of liberalism. For example, would Brown or any American liberal ever be able to overcome their internalization of American Cold War propaganda against the Soviet Union and agree to posit Soviet socialism as our point of departure to resist neoliberalism based on the language and promise of Soviet socialism? After all, Soviet socialism provided so much more than liberalism even promised to deliver on the questions of race, gender, and class. Soviet socialism guaranteed the Soviet peoples the right to work, the right to housing, to free education, free healthcare, free daycare, among other social benefits. While the Soviet system was highly restrictive of political and cultural rights and was run by a Eurocentric managerial class of party apparatchiks who had disproportionate benefits, often captured by the term “state capitalism,” why could the socialist and social democratic promises of the USSR and its 1936 Constitution which promised a future democratic communist society not be chosen as a point of departure to combat neoliberalism, let alone liberalism and its false promises, in the hope of striving and fighting for what Soviet socialism promised but did not and could not deliver? Here, I believe that Sara Farris’s insistence in her comments on my book on the importance of the much-ignored economic, a point with which Islam in Liberalism is in full agreement, as the central question to be asked when it comes to Europe’s relationship to “Islam,” Muslim refugees, and Muslim women, offers a more promising approach on which to base our resistance to liberalism and neoliberalism. Abandoning the discourse of rights and the governmentality it enshrines globally is not therefore an abandonment of the horizon of “freedom, justice, or equality,” but rather of the liberal onto-epistemology that makes them intelligible, as Sabsay fully recognizes. Here, my sense is that it is socialism that we cannot not want—not liberalism.

— Joseph Massad
"[T]here are tricks as to how to study “gender” in the Muslim world. If analysts attend to the social and economic factors, to the geographic and historical factors and actors, to culture as a dynamic entity that produces and is produced by social, economic, historic and geographic factors and actors, analysts, whether Asian or African or European or American, will be able to begin to understand and analyse social phenomena based on terms and methods that the local situation on hand itself determines, rather than script them a priori with research agendas that are connected to imperial policies, namely developmentalism and orientalist methodologies of culturalism, comparatism and assimilationism. — Joseph Massad, Islam in Liberalism, pp. 211–12

Sunday, February 19, 2017

“Dialogue” is one of those words, like “diversity”, that can mean all things to all people. It is often used to define shallow, skating-on-the-surface conversations which give the impression of an exchange but which touch upon nothing substantive. It can also mean proper, dig-deep contestations through which we test each other’s ideas and in which we show ourselves willing to be uncomfortable as we ourselves are tested. In universities, and in society at large, there is today too little of the latter and too much of the former; too little real engagement and too great a desire to stay within our comfort zones.

Are Soas students right to 'decolonize' their minds from Western philosophers?
Well, you can argue for whatever you think as long as you don't question the fundamental context in which, siyasa, fiqh, maslaha, 'democracy', state, etc operate or determined, i.e. as long as you don't question how the socio-economic structure relates to social justice and law, ownership and social relations and powers. Ms Landes, correctly referred to the "Islamic governments" of the pre-colonial era, but ignored the global entrenchment of the capitalist system in today's "Muslim societies". How can one question the euro centric concepts without questioning capitalist "democracy"? 
It's the limit of the liberal thinking.

"How to create an Islamic government — not an Islamic state"
From the Middle East achive

A CIA document (1983)

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Forbes or how to save capitalism and therefore humanity

Unless it changes, capitalism will starve humanity by 2050
«La colonisation fait partie de l’histoire française. C’est un crime, c’est un crime contre l’humanité, c’est une vraie barbarie et ça fait partie de ce passé que nous devons regarder en face en présentant aussi nos excuses à l’égard de celles et ceux envers lesquels nous avons commis ces gestes.»
La phrase, prononcée à la télévision algérienne, est d’Emmanuel Macron. Des propos qui ont provoqué de vives réactions, notamment à droite et à l’extrême droite. Même la ministre écologiste Emmanuelle Cosse a réagi ce jeudi matin en niant le terme de «crime contre l’humanité»Pour l’historien Benjamin Stora, les propos du leader d’En marche n’ont pourtant rien de révolutionnaire.
Visualizing Capital

I still think that reading Capital volume 1 gives a better idea than Harvey's illustration.