Eastern Europe is about to blow. If it does, it could take much of the EU with it. It's an emergency situation but there are no easy solutions. The IMF doesn't have the resources for a bailout of this size and the recession is spreading faster than relief efforts can be organized. Finance ministers and central bankers are running in circles trying to put out one fire after another. Its only a matter of time before they are overtaken by events. If one country is allowed to default, the dominoes could begin to tumble through the whole region. This could trigger dramatic changes in the political landscape. The rise of fascism is no longer out of the question.
The UK Telegraph's economics editor Edmund Conway sums it up like this:
"A 'second wave' of countries will fall victim to the economic crisis and face being bailed out by the International Monetary Fund, its chief warned at the G7 summit in Rome....But with some countries' economies effectively dwarfed by the size of their banking sector and its financial liabilities, there are fears they could fall victim to balance of payments and currency crises, much as Iceland did before receiving emergency assistance from the IMF last year." (UK Telegraph)
Israel’s Rationale for Murder: No One is Innocent
by M. Junaid Levesque-Alam
Israel’s official excuses for extinguishing over 1,300 Palestinian lives—half of them civilian and one-third of them children— are oft-repeated by its apologists: Hamas’ rocket fire made the invasion unavoidable, and its tactics made civilian casualties inevitable.
Do these positions dovetail with—or decapitate—history? Are they logical? Are they moral? Or are they smokescreens, designed to disguise troublesome facts about both Israel’s strategy and its very origins?
The reality behind the rockets
Israel’s first argument about Hamas’ rockets fails on several levels.
It neatly—and falsely—posits Hamas as the attacker and Israel as the defender. The only problem with this pleasant fiction is that Israel has been expelling, occupying, and imprisoning Palestinians long before Hamas even came into existence.
On President Obama's visit to Canada PROTEST U.S. BOMBINGS OF PAKISTAN AND THE OCCUPATION OF AFGHANISTAN
On Thursday, February 19, to mark the first official visit of U.S. president Barack Hussein Obama to Canada concerned members of the South Asian community and their supporters from throughout the Lower Mainland plan to publicly express their protest against the continuing drone attacks on the sovereign territory of Pakistan and the continued occupation of Afghanistan.
Whatever "change" and "hope" Barack Obama promised to bring to the people of the USA and of the world, when it comes to Afghanistan and Pakistan, it is only a continuation of the drastic and irresponsible policies followed by George Bush.
Drop In Picket
12pm - 5pm, US Consulate 1076 W.Pender St.
5:30 pm - 7pm Vancouver Art Gallery, Robson Sq.
OBAMA: LEARN FROM LINCOLN AND DO THE RIGHT THING
by Danny Schechter (Author of PLUNDER)
Last week, television was filled with programs marking Abraham Lincoln's birthday. (The official holiday is February 16.) We watched reports on how the civil war erupted and was almost lost by the Union side. We were reminded of how many died and were wounded in that great, national tragedy.
We were also told how Lincoln was often despondent and forced over time to take stronger measures including the Emancipation Proclamation and the abolition of Slavery, even though, at first, he waffled, compromised, and proposed less definitive measures. Somehow, events end up driving policy and as the war got worse, the president found himself doing things he initially opposed or deflected.
Ultimately, he did move against slavery,
justifying freeing the slaves at first as an economic and military blow
at the Confederacy. Later he called it a moral issue. His last speech
calling for voting rights for some freed slaves was the trigger that
sparked racist actor, John Wilkes Booth, to become an assassin.
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, 104.3 cable, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca. He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://GorillaRadioBlog.blogspot.com
Vancouver's Finest: Example of our Civilization's Insanity Struck Yet Again
by Dave Olsen
Last Monday morning, not surprisingly, Private Constable Clark (badge 2432) was "working" in an automobile, misusing another expensive and dangerous piece of technology provided to him by our tax dollars.
Here's the scene: me, riding a bike (my bad) north on Main Street, a minute away from reaching my client's office on time at 11:30am. Suddenly, north of Pender, I hear a loud click, click, click sound behind me but after looking in my rear-view mirror, I can't see anything that would make such a weird sound. I then hear a voice over a loud speaker say, "you have enough room there, Chief?"
I won't bother debating the racist undertone of that comment; I will say that I was riding as far right as practicable, as written in the Motor Vehicle Act (MVA), meaning that I was just far enough away from the line of parked cars so that I would not get "doored" if one opened suddenly (recent court cases in other jurisdictions confirm this serious threat to a cyclist's health/life). This put me into the right most lane of traffic, about where the right-hand side tires of cars and trucks travel.
DIVINING OBAMA SECRETLY "DAMNING" INDIGENOUS WATER
On February 19th the U.S. "bucket brigade" of President Barack "The-Sorcerer's-Apprentice" Obama and his entourage will be bringing their empty pails to Canada. They want Prime Minister Stephen "Sponge-Bob" Harper and his buddies to start hauling Indigenous water to the States.
They're after our resources.
You can bet on it!
The following day, Secretary of Interior and Bureau of Indian Affairs, Ken "Spanish-Amphibian" Salazar, will make an important announcement about their plan to steal our water.
Torture American Style: Omar Khadr's Tale of the Tape
by C. L. Cook
In July of last year, Canadian
Prime Minister Stephen Harper refused to entertain petitioning the
United States for the return of child soldier Omar Khadr, the last
"coalition of the willing" country citizen held at Guantanamo Bay's Camp X-Ray.
At that time, Khadr's legal team released video tape of
his interrogation by members of Canada's secret service, CSIS, (the
video is not for the squeamish). By refusing to intercede,
Harper is complicit in the violation of a number of international
treaties Canada, unlike the United States, is a signatory to.
Today, as the child soldier endures his seventh year
of illegal incarceration at the infamous Guantanamo Bay, Cuba prison,
Harper still refuses to consider petitioning on Khadr's behalf when new
American president, Barack Obama visits Canada next week.
Below the break is an article I wrote on the Khadr case in May of last year.
Canada's Toxic Mine Tailings Secret Goes to Court
by Mining Watch
Canada's Federal Court will be hearing a lawsuit today against the Minister of the Environment for failing to ensure that Canada's mining industry publicly reports the hundreds of millions of kilograms of toxic pollution it generates each year.
The lawsuit was filed in Federal Court in late 2007 by Ecojustice (formerly Sierra Legal Defence Fund) on behalf of MiningWatch Canada and Great Lakes United. The Application for Judicial Review alleges that the Minister broke the law when he directed mining companies to not report huge amounts of pollution sent to tailings ponds and waste rock piles to the National Pollutant Release Inventory (NPRI).
"We are arguing that the Minister has ignored his legal duties under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act to provide the public with the full extent of pollutants released by mining companies in Canada," said Justin Duncan, Staff Lawyer with Ecojustice. "The Canadian public and especially residents living downstream from mining operations have the right to scrutinize the environmental and health hazards these mining companies continue to create."
Welcome to the crony capitalist convention where New Labour got into bed with the bankers
by William Bowles
Welcome to the crony capitalist convention where Blair/Brown got in bed with the bankers but we were the ones who got screwed . The cry goes up, ‘wha’ happened?’ The former boss of HBOS, Sir James Crosby became head of the Financial Services Authority allegedly the ‘watchdog’ of the financial sector and then it emerges that Crosby was one of the architects of what Michael Hudson describes as,
“The commercial banks…us[ing] their credit-creating power not to expand the production of goods and services or raise living standards but simply to inflate prices for real estate (making fortunes for their brokerage, property appraisal and insurance affiliates), stocks and bonds (making more fortunes for their investment bank subsidiaries), fine arts (whose demand is now essentially for trophies, degrading the idea of art accordingly) and other assets already in place.” — ‘Bubble Economy 2.0: The Financial Recovery Plan from Hell’ By Michael Hudson’