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Posts tagged: american empire

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dixon_Entrance

The so-called “A-B Line” (approximately 54°40’N), which marks the northern boundary of the Dixon Entrance, was delineated during the 1903 Alaska Boundary Treaty. The meaning of the line remains in dispute between Canada and the United States. Canada claims the line is the international maritime boundary, while the United States holds that its purpose was only to designate which islands belonged to which country, and holds that the maritime boundary is an equidistant line between islands.[3] Territorial fishing disputes between the countries remain today, as the United States does not recognize the A-B Line for purposes of seafloor resources or fishing rights and has never shown the treaty boundary on its own official maps.

OMG

The problem is not that poor countries cannot manage to drag themselves up the development ladder, the problem is that they are actively prevented from doing so. Beginning in the early 1980s, Western governments and financial institutions like the World Bank and IMF changed their development policy from one that was basically Keynesian to one that remains devotedly neoliberal, requiring radical market deregulation, fiscal austerity, and privatization in developing countries as a condition of receiving aid.

We were told that this neoliberal shock therapy – known as structural adjustment – would help stimulate the economies of poor countries. But exactly the opposite happened. Instead of helping poor countries develop, structural adjustment basically destroyed them. Cambridge economist Ha-Joon Chang has demonstrated that while developing countries enjoyed per capita income growth of more than 3% prior to the 1980s, structural adjustment cut it in half, down to 1.7%. When it was foisted on Sub-Saharan Africa, per capita income began to decline at a rate of 0.7% per year, and average GNP shrank by around 10%. As a result, the number of Africans living in basic poverty nearly doubled. It would be hard to overstate the degree of human suffering that these figures represent.

Robert Pollin, an economist at the University of Massachusetts, estimates that developing countries have lost roughly $480 billion in potential GDP as a result of structural adjustment. Yet Western corporations have benefitted tremendously. It has forced open vast new consumer markets; it has made it easier to access cheap labor and raw materials; it has opened up avenues for capital flight and tax avoidance; it has created a lucrative market in foreign debt; and it has facilitated a massive transfer of public resources into private hands (the World Bank alone has privatized more than $2 trillion worth of assets in developing countries).

Poverty in the Global South is not just a static given; it is being actively created. And the striking thing is that these atrocities are being perpetrated under the cover of aid. In other words, not only does aid serve as a powerful rhetorical device that cloaks takers in the guise of givers, it also operates as a powerful tool in the global wealth extraction system.

Aid in Reverse: How Poor Countries Develop Rich Countries (via medhanena)

Ummm this is amazingly concisely said.

(via popthirdworld)

in the year of our lord two thousand and fourteen you can still buy bootleg lincoln logs with heroic us soldiers and wild indians

in the year of our lord two thousand and fourteen you can still buy bootleg lincoln logs with heroic us soldiers and wild indians

seppin:


An Iranian channel ran a story about how a certain kind of martial arts is enjoying increasing popularity among Iranian women. This means that a) Iranian women have rights, b) Iranian women can access the public sphere, c) Iranian women participate in organized, public sports, and d) an Iranian government news channel has no problem with any of this.
Faced with these facts, the Western media panicked: some news agencies resorted to the stereotype of Iranian women as veiled, militant fanatics; others opted for infantilizing portrayals of suffering women using martial arts as their only escape. Can you imagine any self-respecting Western reporter writing a story that explained, unprovoked, the popularity of karate among girls in suburban Los Angeles by citing America’s high rates of sexual assault? Additionally, few bothered to mention that recently it has been Western sports organizations that have prevented Iranian women from playing, for example in 2011 forcing the Iranian women’s soccer team to forfeit hope of reaching the Olympics because they wore sports hijabs on the field.
Narratives of weak or militant Iranian women are not just dishonest; they also fuel a political narrative whereby Islamism is equated with backwardness and the ability of women to reconcile Islamic ideals with feminist goals is entirely obfuscated. Both Western conservatives and many secular feminists often participate in this obfuscation, effectively trying to either hide Iranian women’s successes in order to demonize Iran or by ignoring the ideologies of liberation they have formulated in order to preserve the status of secular feminism as the only path to women’s liberation.

Read the entire article. You can follow ajammc on tumblr here. 

seppin:

An Iranian channel ran a story about how a certain kind of martial arts is enjoying increasing popularity among Iranian women. This means that a) Iranian women have rights, b) Iranian women can access the public sphere, c) Iranian women participate in organized, public sports, and d) an Iranian government news channel has no problem with any of this.

Faced with these facts, the Western media panicked: some news agencies resorted to the stereotype of Iranian women as veiled, militant fanatics; others opted for infantilizing portrayals of suffering women using martial arts as their only escape. Can you imagine any self-respecting Western reporter writing a story that explained, unprovoked, the popularity of karate among girls in suburban Los Angeles by citing America’s high rates of sexual assault? Additionally, few bothered to mention that recently it has been Western sports organizations that have prevented Iranian women from playing, for example in 2011 forcing the Iranian women’s soccer team to forfeit hope of reaching the Olympics because they wore sports hijabs on the field.

Narratives of weak or militant Iranian women are not just dishonest; they also fuel a political narrative whereby Islamism is equated with backwardness and the ability of women to reconcile Islamic ideals with feminist goals is entirely obfuscated. Both Western conservatives and many secular feminists often participate in this obfuscation, effectively trying to either hide Iranian women’s successes in order to demonize Iran or by ignoring the ideologies of liberation they have formulated in order to preserve the status of secular feminism as the only path to women’s liberation.

Read the entire article. You can follow ajammc on tumblr here

[in capitalism] freedom is one of the commodities that is for sale, and if you are affluent, you can have a lot of it.
 - noam chomsky

[in capitalism] freedom is one of the commodities that is for sale, and if you are affluent, you can have a lot of it.

- noam chomsky

First…. Many Indigenous Nations have calendars which have been counting the years for a very long time. I am aware that the calendar of the Mohawk Indian Nation has been counting the winters for over 33,120 years. This pre-dates the so-called ‘land-bridge’ of the Bering Strait theory, unless, of course, the Bering Strait scientists decide to move their interestingly illusive time period for “early migration” of Indians back to 40,000 years! Many American Indian early histories tell of events that took place on this Turtle continent (North America) long before any so-called ice age. But, for political reasons, these histories have been mostly ignored. You see, the Bering Strait, in truth, is a theory that was born of the politics and propaganda of early America. In the midst of the American ‘Manifest Destiny’ social climate, the Bering Strait theory provided a ‘scientific’ means to justify the taking of ancestral Indian lands. In short, the mythical theory eased the conscience, as it was a way for land hungry immigrants to believe that, because Indian people were only ‘recent inhabitants’ of this land , it was not really their ‘homeland’. Therefore Indians were, in their minds, not any more the ‘original people’ of this land than they were. This was, and still is, the political power of the infamous ‘Bering Strait theory’.

The B.S. (Bering Strait) Myth
By John Two-Hawks

The Bering Strait Theory was made to make colonialism seem less like exploitation.

(via fwoosh2)

IIRC this was also done in South Africa. the regime said that the “black” africans had only centuries earlier displaced the “brown” africans.

(via brooklyn-nationalist)

snarkbender:

lamaschingonaa:

forcedranting:

sulitati:

Ten times more people died in nine years trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico Border than died trying to cross the Berlin Wall during its 28 year existence.
And death rates are spiking, even as immigration from Mexico slows.

The main difference: the Berlin Wall didn’t cross one of the most unforgiving deserts in the world. Everybody who died trying to cross it was shot by guards. By comparison, the US Border Patrol has rescued more than 15,000 migrants during the same period, over 3x the number of deaths.

But you’re not going to mention how many people the Border Patrol has killed? How they shot down through the fence and killed a 16 year old boy? How many water caches they intentionally sabotage? How they leave injuries, even serious injuries, untreated? How they sexually assault migrant women? How funneling migrants through the deadliest part of the United States was an intentional part of border policy - that they knew that people were going to die, and instituted it anyway?
And if you want to be nit picky, the number of confirmed deaths is around 4,000. For every migrant that is found, there are at least five to ten times that number. That puts the estimate deaths between 20,000 and 40,000.
20,000 to 40,000 intentionally designed deaths. Most of which are buried without recognition, graves, or memorials.

they talk about the Unforgiving Desert being the cause of death for these people, as though armed vigilantes have no part in this.
like no responsibility falls on people who intentionally destroy stores of food & water placed in the desert to help these people try to survive.
as though there’s no culpability for people who take advantage of the desperation of migrants & abandon them to their deaths once they have their money.

there is no part of ‘they died in the desert’ that isn’t shrugging and saying ‘that’s what they get, should have stayed home, too bad so sad.’  such brave indifference, it’s not the guns of the militarized border, both official and unofficial, that killed all those people - it wss the desert that //totally coincidentally// just happened to be right there in the way.
this is a slightly off-base comparison in that east germany built a wall to keep people //in//, not out, but the intent was the same, so whatever.  if the stasi could have built their ‘anti-fascist protection wall’ over a desert they would have.

snarkbender:

lamaschingonaa:

forcedranting:

sulitati:

Ten times more people died in nine years trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico Border than died trying to cross the Berlin Wall during its 28 year existence.

And death rates are spiking, even as immigration from Mexico slows.

The main difference: the Berlin Wall didn’t cross one of the most unforgiving deserts in the world. Everybody who died trying to cross it was shot by guards. By comparison, the US Border Patrol has rescued more than 15,000 migrants during the same period, over 3x the number of deaths.

But you’re not going to mention how many people the Border Patrol has killed? How they shot down through the fence and killed a 16 year old boy? How many water caches they intentionally sabotage? How they leave injuries, even serious injuries, untreated? How they sexually assault migrant women? How funneling migrants through the deadliest part of the United States was an intentional part of border policy - that they knew that people were going to die, and instituted it anyway?

And if you want to be nit picky, the number of confirmed deaths is around 4,000. For every migrant that is found, there are at least five to ten times that number. That puts the estimate deaths between 20,000 and 40,000.

20,000 to 40,000 intentionally designed deaths. Most of which are buried without recognition, graves, or memorials.

they talk about the Unforgiving Desert being the cause of death for these people, as though armed vigilantes have no part in this.

like no responsibility falls on people who intentionally destroy stores of food & water placed in the desert to help these people try to survive.

as though there’s no culpability for people who take advantage of the desperation of migrants & abandon them to their deaths once they have their money.

there is no part of ‘they died in the desert’ that isn’t shrugging and saying ‘that’s what they get, should have stayed home, too bad so sad.’ such brave indifference, it’s not the guns of the militarized border, both official and unofficial, that killed all those people - it wss the desert that //totally coincidentally// just happened to be right there in the way.

this is a slightly off-base comparison in that east germany built a wall to keep people //in//, not out, but the intent was the same, so whatever. if the stasi could have built their ‘anti-fascist protection wall’ over a desert they would have.

Malcolm [X] was one of the most beautiful and one of the most gentle men I met in all my life. He asked the boy a question which I now present to you: If you are a citizen, why do you have to fight for your civil rights? If you’re fighting for your civil rights, that means you’re not a citizen. In fact, the legality of this country has never had anything to do with its former slaves. We are still governed by the slave codes.
James Baldwin on Malcolm X, 1979. (via floricanto-desnuda)
America is the wealthiest nation on Earth, but its people are mainly poor, and poor Americans are urged to hate themselves. Every other nation has folk traditions of men who were poor but extremely wise and virtuous, and therefore more estimable than anyone with power and gold. No such tales are told by American poor. They mock themselves and glorify their betters.
Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse Five
(via human-voices)

the most disappointing part of burke dropping into east/west as a dichotomy is that i’ve seen a bunch of episodes of tduc (and connections) both over the years and recently, and it’s simply not //in// there other than right here

the whole premise of his shows, in fact, has always been that some people are inherently conservative and devoted to keeping things the way things are, while others are just gangbusters for change and progress, and many of the most interesting changes in society came about as a result of the tension between those outlooks producing unexpected results from unusual combinations

in other words, his thesis has consistently been that both the arch conservative view and the radical progressive view have equally contributed to and shaped society and civilization, and both are intrinsic parts //of// our modern and historical soc and civ, that both views have shaped the collective ‘us’, and that both views are equally a part of that ‘us’

but here he is in the pilot talking for the first and to my knowledge last time about a progressive ‘us’ as compared to a conservative ‘them’, and it sounds completely fucking bonkers - equally as much because it’s so out of place as because ‘the west is modern and dynamic where the east is rigid and unyielding’ actually is a ludicrous claim

in every other episode i’ve seen it’s about how the history of the west (including contact with the east for centuries) contributed to a modern ‘we’ that is universal - only right here at the beginning does he explicitly demarcate those parts of the world that are to be excluded from the ‘us’ that he’s always talking to and about

and in fact, if you cut about five minutes of footage from the pilot, it wouldn’t even be in there at all

that he put it in and nobody has ever taken it out says an awful lot about how aggressively that sentiment perpetuates in the ur-culture

watching the first episode of the day the universe changed for the first time on youtube

the parts where james burke talks about the interconnected and unexpected way that western civilization got to where we are today are endlessly insightful and fascinating

the parts where he talks about western inquisitiveness and progress as a direct counterpoint to the staunch conservatism of the east is incredibly disappointing

how a guy this clever and thoughtful fell into the ‘this is how we are and everyone else //isn’t//’ trap is, frankly, a documentary series worth making, talking about the perverse strain of western colonial outlook that runs through the ostensibly intellectually pure branch of science and cultural theory, from burke and sagan in the 70s to dawkins and tyson today, examining how it got there, how it sustains itself, and how it defends itself against the same ruthless intellectual rigor by which every other idea they endorse must be tried

We’re raising a generation of kids to see fat as the ultimate failure and the ultimate sin.

Madame Thursday

Today a mother will talk about how “disgusting” fat people are and her child will internalize it. Today a father will tell his wife that he will divorce her if she ever gets fat and their child will internalize it. Today a grandmother will shame her grandchild for getting pudgy and that child will internalize it. Today a teacher will make a fat joke and his class full of children will internalize it. Today millions of children will be bombarded with messages about how thin is good and fat is bad and they will internalize it. 

The “war on obesity” is creating a shock wave of weight bigotry that will be felt for generations to come. 

"We’re raising a generation of kids to see fat as the ultimate failure and the ultimate sin."

(via fatoutloud)

TW: ed, ed behaviours, fatphobia, fat hatred, body hatred

And it’s casual and insidious. It seems benign, but we allow our magazines, televisions, internet, and movies to plant the idea in our heads that we simply aren’t working hard enough - or we would look like the models and actresses and actors we see every day - parading half nude across our points of view and reinforcing our idea that only thin people deserve to be nude in front of someone else.

We don’t even know what a real person looks like anymore. Let’s be honest. We’re SHOCKED when we see those side by side comparison photos of what Halle Berry, Beyonce, Madonna, Scarlet Jo, Jennifer Lawrence and others “really” look like. We have no clue what’s real and what’s not anymore - and product companies are raking in the profits.

We call it “body inspiration” “thinspiration” “fitspiration” “body goals” “fitness goals” and more. 

We use inhuman, unbelievable, improbable, and unattainable bodies, scraped and morphed and pieced together on computers, to inspire ourselves to journey to a place we’ll never arrive at - no matter how hard we work or how much we starve ourselves.

You’ll never get there. You know why? Because no one can get there. That’s the whole point of it all. Even the models they use haven’t gotten “there” - and they never will, either. 

But it’s so benign, the way it starts… we don’t even recognize it happening anymore.

(via peechington-marie)

I had to reblog this for peechington-marie’s lovely added thoughts. Very thought provoking!

(via fatoutloud)

nezua:

kimicita:

this this this this this

Who wants to take the time utter the phrase “economic refugees seeking asylum from predatory trade practices” when you can just let the greezy word “illeeeegul” ooze from your face-hole?

nezua:

kimicita:

this this this this this

Who wants to take the time utter the phrase “economic refugees seeking asylum from predatory trade practices” when you can just let the greezy word “illeeeegul” ooze from your face-hole?

roropcoldchain:

class-snuggle:

Wherein the US military is apparently a superfluous middle-man to God’s divine intervention in American foreign policy.


The fuck did I just read?

honestly god’s doing kind of a shit job then
also only atheists are members of the aclu
also is the marine old testament jewish bc jesus said to play it cool

roropcoldchain:

class-snuggle:

Wherein the US military is apparently a superfluous middle-man to God’s divine intervention in American foreign policy.

The fuck did I just read?

honestly god’s doing kind of a shit job then

also only atheists are members of the aclu

also is the marine old testament jewish bc jesus said to play it cool