Showing posts from June, 2018


Another indictment of the "International Criminal Fund" “We are not poor but were made poor, this is your policy, oh dollar” ( Mish faqir lakin ifqar, hatha nahjak ya dular ). This understanding of corruption is in stark contrast to notions of corruption which depict the main problem of postcolonial states in the global South as one of corrupt individuals, rather than global economic structures that keep elites, leaders and policies which harm their populations. Framed this way, the problem is mismanagement rather than (deliberate) structures that benefit the elite at the expense of the majority." Do you know who governs us? The damned Monetray Fund Essential reading: Debt, IMF, and the World Bank  by Eric Toussaint and Damien Millet, 2010
"Class is everywhere, impossible to escape or even look away from, but it is still unusual for politicians or commentators to call it by name. In a class-ridden society, Americans often manage to dodge the issue." "The remaking of class"
Warning : do not read this if you are eating or about to eat, going to bed, or going to make love. This happened between 1952-1956, not in the nineteenth century. "Interrogation under torture was widespread. Many of the men were anally raped, using knives, broken bottles, rifle barrels, snakes and scorpions. A favourite technique was to hold a man upside down, his head in a bucket of water, while sand was rammed into his rectum with a stick. Women were gang-raped by the guards. People were mauled by dogs and electrocuted. The British devised a special tool which they used for first crushing and then ripping off testicles. They used pliers to mutilate women’s breasts. They cut off inmates’ ears and fingers and gouged out their eyes. They dragged people behind Land Rovers until their bodies disintegrated. Men were rolled up in barbed wire and kicked around the compound."  — Caroline Elkins, Britain's Gulag: The Brutal End of Empire in Kenya , 2005 I doubt it that e
"It is also important to recognise that the stories we consume are, for the most part, commodities produced by profit-making companies. Like other commodities, their production, value and demand are driven by market forces. This can harm those at the centre of the stories, distort our understanding of a crisis and even contribute to a sense of panic – which, in turn, provokes panicked responses from the authorities." Rather than seeing European racism as a thing of the past, the recognition of its persistence is essential if we are to understand the refugee crisis and some of the responses to it. Thousands of people from former European colonies, whose grandparents were treated as less than human by their European rulers, have drowned in the Mediterranean in the past two decades, yet this only became a “crisis” when the scale of the disaster was impossible for Europeans to ignore. 5 myths about the refugee crisis
Justice If you earn £25000/year before tax, it takes the Brazilian player Neymar 6 minutes to earn your weekly salary ! May be it is worth it. A footballer entertains us and makes us happy; he might even help us release some orgasmic energy!  In doing that, he is more useful to society than a nurse or a cleaner.
"Je suis Capital Gazette" (?) Anyone?
"what’s happening today marks a dangerous new development in European politics. Until now, the effort to filter out and deter unwanted migrants from reaching  Europe  has generally been pursued by politicians of the liberal centre, and part of their justification for doing it is that these unpleasant but necessary policies will stave off a rightwing populist backlash." The irrational fear of migrants ... But is it really irrational?
Critical history is theorized history.  It does not treat “theory” as an isolated corpus of texts or body of knowledge. Nor does it treat theory as a separate, non-historical form, of knowledge. Rather, it regards theory as a worldly practice (and historical artifact). The point is not for historians to become theorists; theory for theory’s sake is as bankrupt as the idea that facts can “speak for themselves.” The point is for disciplinary history to overcome its guild mentality (disciplinary essentialism) and empiricist methodology (methodological fetishism) — to interrogate its “commonsense” assumptions about evidence and reality, subjectivity and agency, context and causality, chronology and temporality. This would require serious engagement with critical theories of self, society, and history. Theses on Theory and History
"Trial runs for fascism are in full flow" Exageration? 
UK The business of this country is business. "I'm a trade unionist, not a terrorist" 
New York congressional primary
"The current UK government nevertheless continues to drive outsourcing into the state’s most complex and socially essential service domains. It’s enough to make Leonid Brezhnev blush." "Why public sector outsourcing is less efficient than Soviet planning"
At the British Library, London Sex, Botany and Empire
Britain The historical gain that the fundamentalists have not privatised yet. Or, they have partially privatised, along with a steady creation of private healthcare. Imagine how much profit a Branson could make if it is given to him and thus he speeds up  commercial travels to space!
The consevatives and the oppressors of yesteryear, portray themselves and teach their children today that they are pioneers of "liberation and freedoms." "(Southern Indian women, whose breasts were traditionally uncovered, found themselves obliged to undergo the indignity of conforming to Victorian standards of morality; soon the right to cover one's breasts became a marker of upper-cast respectability and efforts were made to deny this privilege to lower-caste women, leading to such missionary-inspired colonial curiosities as the Breast Cloth Agitation from 1813 to 1859 in Travancore and Madras Presidency.)"  The Indian Penal Code, "drafted by the British imperial rulers in the mid-nineteenth century criminalizes homosexuality under Section 377; creates a crime of 'sedition' under which students shouting slogans have been arrested; and applies a double standard to the commission of adultery."  "The irony is that in India there has
Excellent! A must read. " ‘The deterioration of the intelligentsia,’ Arthur Koestler wrote, ‘is as much a symptom of disease as the corruption of the ruling class or the sleeping sickness of the proletariat. They are symptoms of the same fundamental process.’ One clear sign of intellectual infirmity is the desperation with which centrists and liberals, removed from the cockpit of American power, forage for ideas and inspiration on the lumpen right.  What differentiated the Western model from many Asian, African and Latin American networks of women’s groups and indigenous peoples, or alternative development and environmental organisations, was its indifference to ‘economic and social rights’: what Moyn defines as ‘entitlements to work, education, social assistance, health, housing, food and water’. Focusing on the violations of individuals’ rights by states, human rights groups valuably documented the crimes of the Contras in Nicaragua, the army and death squads in El Salvador,
" Turkey has been under a state of emergency since a failed coup in July 2016, with 107,000 public servants and soldiers dismissed from their jobs. More than 50,000 people have been imprisoned pending trial since the uprising." The BBC is lost in translation. In the very same paragraph , "coup" and "uprising" were used to mean the same thing. We know that what happened in 2016 was a coup and the major Western powers were slow to condemn it. They played watch-and-see first. In these elections, the HDP has scored above the 10% threshold that will aloow it to enter parliament despite its leader being in prison. The 2016 coup: an analysis by Stratfor "Regardless of whether Erdogan is at its helm, Turkey will continue down its expansionist path, a path that was unlikely to be short-circuited by a haphazard coup led by a motley group of Islamists and nationalists. Turkey is on this course, at this stage in history, because geopolitics wills it. B
A photograph by Hadeer Mahmoud, Cairo Metro, 07 April 2016
Grenfell Tower (the residential tower in London, which was destroyed by fire in June 2017, resulting in 71 deaths) is named after Francis Grenfell , a murderer and Marshal who served in committing crimes in Egypt and South Africa and other colonies of the British Empire. One should be proud of tens of names which adorn public places in England!
"Ultimately, the greatest power of Fahmy’s adaptation is its ability to provide the audience with few obvious escape points, fewer firm assumptions to which to return safely. Even the characters’ best dreams for themselves seem illusory, almost ill-gotten. “Let us get out of Cairo. Out of the Yacoubian Building,” Busayna muses to Zaki, “we’ll be free. We’ll be together.” But few in this world have the luxury of escaping their own history: that history lives above you, works at your feet, sticks to you like the residue of centuries, and is liable to kill you in the end." A new adaptation of the Yacoubian Building
"Why has the Iranian public remained silent on Syria?"
Iraq Sadr, Sectarianism, and Popular Alternative
"The British Empire is nothing to be proud of as far as I'm concerned," says artist and dancer Jonzi D. The dilemma whether to accept a British honour
Macron's embrace of Israel is a throwback to France's imperial past
What I do worry about is the fact that writers have become so frightened of being political. The idea that writers are being reduced to creators of a product that is acceptable, that slips down your throat, which readers love and therefore can be bestsellers, that’s so dangerous. Today, for example in India, where majoritarianism is taking root – and by majoritarianism, I don’t just mean the government, I mean that individuals are being turned into micro-fascists by so many means. It is the mobs and vigilantes going and lynching people. So more than ever, the point of the writer is to be unpopular. The point of the writer is to say: “I denounce you even if I’m not in the majority.” "The point if the writer is to be unpopular"
The world's biggest store of plutonium is in ... and a few years ago the plant was breached by greenpeace activists!
An Egyptian woman back from shopping to her remote village of Qantara Sharq in Ismaiiliya. A photo by Mohamed Ali Eddin on Everyday Egypt.
Kuwait " Even as the perpetually fragmented opposition faces harsh repression, it is finding common ground in the issues of corruption and economic justice. State efforts that shut down all remaining spaces for open debate represent, in a sense, an admission that its strategies of vote rigging, gerrymandering, and soft coercion, practiced since the 1960s, have either failed or backfired. Unfortunately, the state seems to have decided to rely less on guile, and more on naked force. The labor movement is also forging new alliances in the face of opposition. Workers, both citizen and noncitizen, are confronting both a populist anti-immigrant backlash and a wave of privatization and austerity. But in response to these challenges, noncitizen workers affiliated with unions abroad have launched campaigns with Kuwaiti labor unions, which have themselves mobilized to combat cuts in wages and benefits." Crackdowns and coalitions in Kuwait A comment: while in the beginning there
South Korea "The Oracle Korea Workers Union was formed in October 2017 in response to unfair and non-transparent salary and compensation systems. The average working hours at Oracle Korea are about 80-100 hours per week, yet most workers have seen no wage increase over the last 10 years." Oracle workers on strike
"The central point is this: identities are fluid, constantly defined and redefined through economic and political struggles. The predominance of ethnic and sectarian conflict is a phenomenon that itself needs to be explained — not assumed to be an unavoidable driver of discord." The Tribalist Trap Syria as an example Note that the author while generalizing when talking about "Western-backed regimes", failed to say that in the case of Syria the regime is a Russian- and Iranian-backed regime.
To you I pledge my love My poverty, my misery, and my debt My failures and frustrations with my meager salary To you I pledge my humiliation. My head hung low and my eyes avoiding those of my children For whom I can't provide To you I pledge my heart! Walid Taha, A Bit of Air Translated from Egyptian Arabic by Anita Husen لك حبي وفقري وبهدلتي وأقساطي وانحطاطي وإحباطي من مرتبي اللي مش كافي وذلي ودلدلة كتافي وعيني المكسورة أدام ولادي من قصر الأيادي !وفؤادي
When the far-right meets the far-left
Russian cinema of change
The outrageous racism that 'graced' Arab TV screens in Ramadan
Turkey's jailed pro-Kurdish candidate
"Rocking the foundations of Islam" The title is ridiculous. Yes, it is reductionist to say that one man, the narrator Bukhari, means Islam. It is also reductionist to imply, through the title of the article, that a book refuting al-Bukhari rocks the foundations of "Islam". 
An average Joe Walking slow Went home, slept .. woke Only to find himself ...                                 an average Joe! Walid Taher, A Bit of Air Translated from Egyptian Arabic By Anita Husen واحد عادي  ماشي هادي روح نام .. صحي ... لقى نفسه ! واحد عادي
In front of the wall ... In front of the one who built it ... In front of the one who made it taller ... In front of the one who guards it A poor guy stopped .. And went pee pee ... Walit Taher, A Bit of Air Translated from Egyptian Arabic by Anita Husen ... أدام السور ... وأدام اللي بانيه ... وأدام اللي بيعليه ... وأدام اللي واقف يحميه .. وقف راجل غلبان ... وعمل پيپيه
The Theft of Syrian Property
... Drowning ..?! So what if we continue to drown .. It's a chance to live among the fish ... traquil .. Without problems ... Without bickering ... Without the pettiness of humans! — Wald Taher, A Bit of Air , 2008 and 2012.  Translated from Egyptian Arabic by Anita Husen
UK: class and "social mobility" [Only] five generations 'before poor reach average pay" That is not bad! We can live with that.
Before Homosexuality in the Arab-Islamic World, 1500–1800
Plan to publish full works of Marx A German academic is leading the project in Berlin (An FT article for subscribers)
Parasitism Housing:  "No region in England and Wales is affordable for workers on median salary." — Financial Times , 15 June 2018
Documenting crimes The First Gulf War, the chemical attack on the Iraqi village of Halabja in 1988 and the role played by foreign companies in the build-up of chemical weapons in the region were the main topics at the most recent "Visions of Iran" film festival in Cologne.  Halabja – casting a long shadow
Mazzucato draws inspiration for her activism from two sources: on the one hand the heterodox economics of Karl Polanyi and on the other hand the democratic ambition of John F Kennedy. JFK inspires Mazzucato to call for the economy to be given a “new mission”. Polanyi’s analysis of the economy as a constructed social artefact makes this seem possible. If the market was made by the state then it can presumably be remade. The question, of course, is how. Unfortunately, the boldness of Mazzucato’s vision and the brashness of her rhetoric are not matched by the depth or coherence of her answer to this basic question. "Mariana Mazzucato's bold mission to reform the global economy"
Someone has advised me not to feel guilty by living in Britain. Here is an answer: "I was in the Indian Police five years, and by the end of that time I hated the imperialism I was serving with bitterness which I probably cannot make clear. In the free air of England that kind of thing is not fully intelligible. In order to hate imperialism you have got to be part of it." — George Orwell, The Road to Wigan Pier Orwell had his reasons at the time. I have my different reasons today. The fundamental remains: Britain is an imperialist state and I am part of it.
Science and Islam (all episodes)
Liberals are criticizing the Korean summit from the Right See also A Murderous History of Korea
Britain McGarvey is withering about “the poverty industry”, run by the middle classes, for doing things not “ with  the community but  to  it”. Poverty Safari by Darren McGarvey
Abortion Bahrain vs. Ireland Bahrain vs. Poland Bahrain and Tunisia vs. Spain Turkey // Sweden, Greece, Italy Turkey vs. Argentina Egypt // Ireland
"The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that global food production is more than adequate to feed the world. For instance,  2,577 million tons of cereal  were forecasted to be produced in 2016, with 13 million tons leftover after demand is met. Worldwide we already  produce  over two thousand kilocalories (kcal) per person on average, the minimum level of energy humans require according to  USDA dietary guidelines . Still, with all this production,  780 million people are living with chronic hunger , many of them living in rural areas dependent upon agriculture for their livelihoods." Capital's hunger in abundance
Ali: Fear Eats the Soul " As anti-foreigner sentiment, particularly during the migrant crisis, continues to plague Germany and the rest of Europe, Fear Eats the Soul has never seemed more relevant. Made around the midpoint of his career, Fear Eats the Soul is a powerful and accessible introduction to Fassbinder’s work. It’s one of his very best films. It stars  Brigitte Mira  as Emmi, an elderly cleaner who falls in love with Ali ( El Hedi ben Salem , Fassbinder’s lover), a much younger Moroccan immigrant. The couple face prejudice from their neighbours, and the strain threatens their relationship. Racism and xenophobia were fiercely damned by Fassbinder previously in  Katzelmacher  (1969) and  Whity  (1971), but the use of melodrama to tell this very moving love story adds a painfully human dimension to the tale." — BFI
Coca-Cola as a serial human rights offender
Class struggle in Turkey "Picture yourself in this situation: You have managed to form a trade union in your workplace.  You've gotten formal recognition from the government.  Under the law, your employer is obligated to open negotiations with you.  But the employer refuses.  So you go out on the picket line.  A year goes by, and the situation doesn't change.  What do you do? This is what happened to workers at DHL Express in Turkey.  They have been on the picket line since 17 July 2017 -- over 300 days.  They have now turned to the international labour movement for help.  We need to send thousands of messages to the management of DHL Express to tell them to recognise the union, to open negotiations, and to play fair with their employees." DHL vs. the trade union
Tales of Two Londons
" Russophobe, champion of mass violence, admirer of antisemitic thugs, more dangerous a nuclear crackpot than the original Dr. Strangelove, and advocate for economic disintegration in Russia — this is how we should remember Richard Pipes."  — Jacobin magazine
Genealogy of an era One should add a list of add-ons which helped gain the consent of the majority: Credit cards Low budget airlines Gadgets and consumerism Threat of an internal-external enemy vs. "our values" "There is no alternative" (after the collpase of the Soviet Union) A massive pile of TV series and movies Promoting individual advancement (underming solidarity and trade unions) Etc. The Third Way International
Although global media outlets like the  Economist  have made the case that the Rohingya of Burma are the “ most persecuted people in the world ” for several years at this point, their plight has yet to fully register around the world. Does that mean that what's been happening to the millions of Syrians is not persecution? The assertion above does not say "the most persecuted ethnic group." I don't understand the criteria used here and not questioned or at least qualified by the Economist and Jacobin editors. The Catasrophe of the Rohingya
What do the Iranian people want?
He was an antidote to the likes of Gordon Ramsay and Jamie Oliver Bourdain’s political transformation happened on the road to Beirut. He landed there in 2006, days before Israel bombarded the city. The episode is a verite documentary of a society upended in an instant. Lebanese journalist  Kim Ghattas  says that as a result, “Bourdain developed a new approach that used conversations about food to tell the story and politics of the countries he visited in ways that hard news couldn’t.” Anthony Bourdain (1956-2018)
[C]limatic facts are not facts in themselves; they assume importance only in relation to the restructuring of the environment within different systems of production. Rolando Garcia, Nature Pleads Not Guilty , Oxford, 1981, p. 157
Global capitalism Why is it that only two large developing capitalist economies* have succeeded in becoming part of the rich capitalist club in the last 50 years ?  Measured in GDP per capita and starting at $3000 per head (PPP real) 40 years ago, Taiwan and Korea now have per capita GDPs over $25,000. In the same period, no other Asian tiger or Latin American economy has risen above $13,000, still within the World B ank‘s middle income range.  Note that both Taiwan and South Korea were American-supported military regimes at the peak of their economic development. *United Arab Emirates or Singapore, for example, cannot be called "large capitalist economies" although they have a very high per capita GDP. 
India then and today In 1750 India and China accounted for almost 75 per cent of world industrial output. "In 1600 when East India Company was established, Britain was producing just 1.8 per cent of world's GDP, while India was generating some 23 per cent. By 1940, after nearly two centuries of the Raj, Britain accounted for nearly 10 per cent of world GDP, while India has been reduced to a poor 'third world' country, destitute and starving, a global poster child of poverty and famine. [Niall] Ferguson [an apologist historian for Imperialism] admits that 'between 1757 and 1900 British per capita gross domestic product increased in real terms by 347 per cent, Indian by a mere 14 per cent'. Even that figure masks a steadily worsening performance by the Raj: from 1900 to 1947 the rate of growth of the Indian economy was below 1 per cent, while population grew steadily at well over 3.5 per cent, leavened only by high levels of infant and child mortality that s
Petition Stand against the destruction of Georg Lukács archives
Spain The new government have little room to maneuver economically as they have agreed to carry over the existing PP budget for the next year as well as to respect the European Union’s fiscal rules. It is also highly unlikely they can repeal the PP’s labor reforms as this would require the support of right-wing regional nationalists. And so in terms of improving the material conditions of the working class, it will be complicated to pass any substantive measures. In reality Sánchez is a social liberal, a descendant of Tony Blair and Gerhard Schoeder’s  Third Way . He did win back the PSOE leadership [after a palace coup against him eighteen months ago] by appealing to the desire of his party’s members for a more left-wing line, but he never really believed in it himself. He should not be underestimated politically. He is extremely ambitious and determined but is more like a Macron or Albert Rivera — an empty vessel onto which you can project various ideological elements. At
Palestine In February and March 2016, nearly 35,000 Palestinian teachers initiated a series of strike actions across the West Bank. Classes were dismissed and students sent home as teachers marched through Ramallah’s streets and organized sit-ins in front of Ministry of Education field offices. Though short-lived, the strike had wide resonance as teachers utilized their waning social capital in ways they had not done since the second intifada, and encouraged members of other unions to organize industrial actions, particularly after the  March 9, 2016 ratification of Social Security Law 6 .  This was the largest teachers’ strike in Palestinian history, and yet it was not organized by their union, the General Union of Palestinian Teachers (GUPT). It was organized despite it. A brief history of a teachers' strike
A book review "From 1965 to 1966, the Indonesian military and its allies massacred hundreds of thousands of Communists — often with the active aid of Western, democratic governments." Indonesia's Red Slaughter
Madeleine Albright's nostalgia to  The Good Old Days
I have always doubted the premises of the "Big Bang" theory since the beginning of 2001 when I read from Eric Lerner's book ( The Big Bang Never Happened , 1993). But, like the dominant ideology in society, the theory has been propagated like a religion. Here is a recent piece on the New Scientist. Unfortunately, it is for subscribers only. Why the big bang was not the beginning
Australia "Millions of tonnes of explosives were used during the mining boom to build more than 100 new mines, but it wasn’t just prime farmland that was blasted away in the boom, it was access to the middle class. At the same time that Gina Rinehart was becoming the world’s richest woman on the back of rising iron ore prices, those on the minimum wage were falling further and further behind their fellow Australians." How the neoliberals convinced us there wasn't enough to go around
In a recent article, former World Bank chief economist, Branko Milanovic reckoned there were two curses for European capital: immigration and rising inequality.   “The fact that the European Union is so prosperous and peaceful, compared both to its Eastern neighbors (Ukraine, Moldova, the Balkans, Turkey) and more importantly compared to the Middle East and Africa means that it is an excellent emigration destination. Not only is the income gap between the “core” Europe of the former EU15 and the Middle East and Africa huge, it has grown. Today, West European GDP per capita is just shy of $40,000 international dollars; sub-Saharan’s GDP per capita is $3,500 (the gap of about 11 to 1). In 1970, Western Europe’s GDP per capita was $18,000, sub-Saharan, $2,600 (the gap of 7 to 1). Since people in Africa can multiply their incomes by ten times by migrating to Europe, it is hardly surprising that, despite all the obstacles that Europe has recently began placing in the way of the migrants, t
A big disaster for the Western civilisation: more Muslims will be migrating to Europe in the coming decades. Climate-exodus is expected in the Middle East and North Africa
Abu 'I-Alaa Al-Ma'arri (973-1057), a poet born near Aleppo, Syria We laugh, but inept is our laughter; We should weep and weep sore, Who are shattered like glass, and thereafter Re-molded no more. --- Religion is a "fable invented by the ancients".  So, too, the creeds of man: the one prevails Until the other comes; and this one fails When that one triumphs; ay, the lonesome world Will always want the latest fairy-tales. --- Among the crumbling ruins of the creeds The Scout upon his camel played his reeds And called out to his people —"Let us hence! The pasture here is full of noxious weeds. --- Hanifs are stumbling, Christians all astray Jews wildered, Magians far on error's way. We mortals are composed of two great schools Enlightened knaves or else religious fools. --- What is religion? A maid kept close that no eye view her; The price of her wedding-gifts and dowry baffles the wooer. Of all the goodly doctrine that I f
Syria The US dropped nuclear bombs on Japan when the war had already been won. The ‘rape of Germany’ by both allied and Soviet forces after the Second World War is indicative of this ‘victorious’ sense of impunity. The effective questioning of why a party would use disproportionate violence against another party betrays an implicit notion that the accused has an interest in not alienating the local population. Ironically, such arguments denying the ‘rape of Germany’ by supporters of the allies would have undoubtedly been repeated in the same terms: “why would our forces do this when we had already won?” Chemical attacks: why would the regime do it since it was "winning the war?"
Nancy Fraser: Marxism and feminism
Jalal Khoury "While the Lebanese theater traces back to the 1800s, specifically to 1848 and to Maroun Nakash, it has evolved in stages. Jalal Khoury helped to pioneer the realist, or modernist, movement from the mid-1960s until his death last December at the age of 84. Considered a trailblazer of modern Lebanese political theater, and banner carrier of the realist school, Jalal Khoury, a playwright, theater director, academic and artistic editor, remained a loyal disciple of the German playwright Bertolt Brecht." Brechtian realist forget by 1967 war, and the birth of modern Lebeanse theater
"The issue is not Sanders' own personal anti-imperialist credentials, nor is critiquing a worthy effort to end a war a holistic condemnation. The issue is the normalisation, without debate, of a "war on terror" that has produced a body count higher than that of the evil it is supposed to counter. Sanders' resolution, excluding this US war from debate on a US-backed war in the same theatre, reflects this." How a Bernie Sanders resolution is normalising "the war on terror"
Remembering Pier Paolo Pasolini
Jordan A strike and protests against reforms imposed by the IMF, an international criminal institution, causing the rise in taxes on revenues, the prices of bread, oil and other commodities. The role of the US, the UAE, Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia in exasperating the crisis because of Jordan's stance on Jerusalem. The unions and the protests are calling for the fall of the government if their demands are not met.
At least 48 migrants died after their boat capsized off the eastern coast of Tunisia Kylie Minogue and Taylor Swift have expressed their sadness and love, and urged "a radical solution against the trafficking of people and a change in the socio-economic global system that kills people looking for a better life."
Very good! "It is fair to say that what these essays achieve is the denigration of the very concept of agency, something at the very heart of the postcolonial project. In obscuring the effects of social circumstances, in denying — implicitly or explicitly — the role of structure, the theorists under consideration whisk away what makes political praxis distinctive as a volitional act. For what is political agency if not a form of practice aimed at the structures of power within which it is embedded? Whether it aims to reproduce them, as in ruling-class strategies, or seeks to transform and undermine them, as is the case with subaltern classes, political agency is defined by its relation to these fields of power. But with Spivak and, in particular, Guha, it seems that it is the simple exercise of will that enables the actions of their protagonists to serve as political agency — even those actions are an acquiescence to their subjugation. Our reading confirms the observation made
Britain "A new political climate, perhaps less fearful of nationalisation and more suspicious of the notion that the private sector does everything better, may sow the seeds of change." A clever conclusion: one of the mouthpieces of the system is quite aware that some sort of a change is required/has to come to avoid a bigger crisis/to save the system from any potential threat. Thus even conservative governments, "neoliberals", might resort to "nationalisation" of some sectors of the economy.  How Thatcherism laid the foundations of the housing crisis A book review
Before Homosexuality in the Arab-Islamic World, 1500-1800 Khaled El-Rouayheb, University of Chicago Press 2005 Excerpts "My central contention is that Arab-Islamic culture on the eve of modernity lacked the concept of 'homosexuality,' and that writings from the period [1500-1800] do not evince the same attitude toward all aspects of what we might be inclined to call homosexuality today. The Arab literature of the early Ottoman period (1516-1798) is replete with casual and sometimes sympathetic references to homosexual love." p. 1 "Homosexuality is condemned and forbidden by the holy law of Islam, but there are times and places in Islamic history when the ban on homosexual love seems no stronger than the ban on adultery in, say, Renaissance Italy or seventeenth-century France. Some [classical Arabic, Persian, and Turkish] poems are openly homosexual; some poets, in their collected poems, even have separate sections for love poems addressed to males and f