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November 17, 2013

The GMO Soy Project Faltering? It’s the FDA To the Rescue!

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It’s a typical dynamic of corporatism. Corporate aggression and government nanny-statism work hand in glove.
 
In this case it’s the FDA’s proposed ban on trans fats. Trans fats are an artificially generated problem of corporate food and of the industrial soybean project in particular.
 
Soybeans, like corn, are the subjects of a US government planned economy based on maximizing production without regard to any actual demand, and then forcing the overproduction into the marketplace by any means possible. Thus processed food was reinvented to buy up as much soy as possible.
 
But soybean oil doesn’t work very well for industrial food. It quickly turns rancid. In order to give it a tenable shelf life, it has to be hydrogenated. And this fills it with trans fats. The answer is to use other oils, not to hydrogenate this one. But that would hinder the corporate soy project. So the Tower of Babel must be built higher.
 
(Meanwhile there are health risks from the industrial soy diet in general. In Asian cuisine soy is eaten in a particular way – limited amounts, mostly as a condiment, with nutritionally complementary foods. But the way unfermented soy is crammed down the Western maw generates hormonal problems, thyroid problems, and may contribute to some cancers. The answer is to eat less soy period, and to eat it the way Asians do.)
 
On account of the trans fat problem, restaurants and manufacturers have switched on a large scale to other oils. This has indeed hindered the corporate soy project. In particular, shiny new Monsanto and DuPont GMO varieties, allegedly engineered to produce a lower-rancidity fat, all USDA-approved and dressed up for the ball, are languishing with few customers and few plantings. Poor little dears. What shall become of them?
 
THIS is a job for the FDA! And for the NYT, never backward in shilling for Monsanto. According to the piece, Monsanto and DuPont have high hopes that an effective ban on partially hydrogenated oils (which the FDA proposal would achieve) would open up a big market opportunity to reclaim lost soybean oil share.
 
The goal: Build the Tower of Babel yet higher!
 
No legitimate profit opportunity? Get the government to construct a planned economy of soy productionism! No market for it? Get the food industry to massively use soy oil! Soy oil doesn’t work, because it turns rancid? Hydrogenate it! Hydrogenation makes the food so unhealthy that even the FDA has to acknowledge it? Replace the regular (Roundup Ready GMO) soy with specially gene-silenced RR soy!
 
And what to do about the even worse problems this will lead to? Never fear – when psychopathy combines with power, no problem can’t be transcended by making it even worse. 
 
The piece is laden with standard corporate media lies: That this product would benefit consumers (replacing just one of the many poisons in a product with an even worse one is not a benefit); that existing GMOs benefit farmers (as the NYT hack knows, existing GMOs cost farmers more in input costs, and further indenture them economically); that GMOs were meant to help control weeds and insects (they were meant to escalate corporate profit, enclosure, control, power, domination; meanwhile the cartel knew that weed and insect control would quickly be subject to an ever-accelerating process of planned obsolescence as the RR and Bt-expressing crops dialectically generated superweeds and superbugs against themselves; this was part of Monsanto’s business plan); that the two new varieties were safety reviewed by the FDA (a “voluntary” review, no less!). As the NYT hack knows, the FDA doesn’t require any safety tests for ANY GMO. The voluntary process goes like this: Monsanto sends a letter to the FDA saying “this product is safe”. The FDA writes back saying “we understand that you say this product is safe”. That’s it. That’s the whole thing. Monsanto goes ahead and says the FDA signed off on the product’s safety, the FDA endorses this lie, and the corporate media starting with the NYT propagates the lie.
 
(There’s also an appearance by Michael Jacobson of the CSPI, which is rapidly becoming one of the most prominent of Monsanto front groups, and Jacobson himself one of the most vile shills.)
 
Meanwhile, the double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) genetic engineering process used in these soybeans presents special health hazards in addition to all the usual ones for which the federal government never requires safety testing. Not did it require testing in this case, in spite of the fact that this technology presents such health risks that even researchers within the USDA itself called for testing.
 
As the piece ruefully admits, this may be too little too late. Most restaurants and manufacturers have moved on to other oils. (Not that these are much better – GMO canola and palm oil, just as environmentally and socioeconomically ravaging as any GMO. The point is that corporate industrial agriculture and its food system as such is a poisonous, destructive, unhealthy system that produces toxic, expensive, poor-quality food.) Soybean oil has lost significant market share since 2005. An anonymous cadre from “one of the country’s largest food companies” said his company had already largely completed the switch to canola, “so I’m not sure why we would need to switch to these other products.”
 
But the soy-industrial complex is expressing optimism, and who knows what kind of government subsidies and other corporate welfare may be deployed to drive down the wholesale price of soybeans and soy oil so that it can regain that lost market share? The only thing we can be sure of is that the farmers themselves won’t see a cent of the “benefit” the corporate media trumpets.
 
Meanwhile, as usual there’s a perfectly good alternative within the soy complex itself. “Monsanto and Dow [sic; probably a typo for DuPont] could also face competition from a high-oleic soybean developed through conventional breeding, not genetic engineering, by researchers at the University of Missouri and the Agriculture Department.”
 
This kind of caveat can almost always be added to any media puff piece touting the latest greatest GMO. Indeed, the GM varieties have almost always merely pirated such conventionally bred varieties, merely injecting them with glyphosate tolerance so more poison can be sprayed upon them, rendering them toxic and nutritionally worthless.
 
So there you have it. This product merely builds upon an already tottering structure of failure and unhealthiness, and if you insist on continuing to build, lower cost and safer material exists.
 
But the US government is never interested in pushing the conventional alternative, since this isn’t profitable for its master Monsanto, it doesn’t contribute to the totalitarian enclosure of agriculture and food the way a proprietary GMO does, and it doesn’t contribute to the overarching corporatist role of GMOs in propping up corporatism as a whole.
 
Meanwhile the true alternative, for productive agriculture and healthy, delicious food, is decentralized agroecology. 
 

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June 17, 2013

The Corporate State is for Corporate Food, and Can Never Be for Community Food

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“Food safety” as a term does exactly the same political work as “war on terror”, and describes the same kind of corporate domination regime. Indeed, the Food Control Act includes provisions for Gleichschaltung between the FDA, USDA, etc. and Homeland Security. The Food Control Act also includes provisions to force domestic policy into line with globalization policies like those of the WTO.
 
Therefore, just as support for the Food Control Act (so far as I’ve seen, universal among the “food safety” NGOs) is de facto support for Monsanto, so it’s support for the food police regime, the militarization of “food safety” and imposing the race to the bottom on US food standards. The problem is the delusion or astroturfing fraud which wants to divide the corporate state into two “separate” halves, the nominal “government” and the extra-governmental “corporations”. Having performed this false separation, one then invents the fantasy, contrary to all the evidence, that “government” and “corporations” are somehow adversarial. But the corporate state is a monolith, the government artificially creates corporations in the first place, corporations are an extension of government, a veritable fourth branch totally unaccountable to the constitution or under any other conventional theory of the legitimacy of government, and this monolith then imposes a planned economy based on corporate welfare and the “government” serving as corporate taxman and thug. (Seeing distinctions between “government” and “corporation”, “public” and “private”, is just as false and misdirectional as to believe in a distinction between the “two” corporatist parties.)
 
Some are such yahoos as to want to divide the government itself into at least two different governments:
 
“If you think the U.S. government is doing a sub-par job of keeping your food safe, brace yourself. You could soon be eating imported seafood, beef or chicken products that don’t meet even basic U.S. food safety standards. Under two new trade agreements, currently in negotiation, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) could be powerless to shut down imports of unsafe food or food ingredients.”
 
But the FDA is part of the same bourgeois government, and performs the same function. It aggressively uses the power it has to do what it’s designed to do: aggrandize Big Drug and Big Ag and assault alternatives to these. It will be just as happy to not “shut down imports” as it is happy to not shut down domestic operations like Wright Eggs. It doesn’t even need specific policy guidelines for that kind of omission! But small raw milk producers who have never sickened anyone? There the FDA supermen are very Can Do. They’ve been using raw milk as a practice ground for the more general assault on Community Food and small organic production which the Food Control Act is intended to give “bipartisan” legislative cover.
 
(Those who think you can separate governments from corporations, and different parts of the government from one another no matter how intensively their actions are coordinated, are usually the same who also support corporations which are psychopathic IN PRINCIPLE, but still idiotically dream of separating the proper use of corporations from their “abuses”. But there’s no such thing as a corporate abuse. Monsanto has never committed an abuse. Not one. It’s always done exactly what it was designed to do.)
 
I can also never get enough of those who are supposedly anti-corporate but who use the enemy’s own propaganda terms like “free trade”.
 
I wrote this to express again how one cannot cherry-pick one’s favorite parts of the corporate state monolith, and then through fantasizing compel these parts to work for humanity against the corporations. If people want healthy, safe, nutritious food, and an economy and polity of food which are socially, economically, and politically healthy for people, then we have to build that for ourselves. We have to do it without the help of the corporate government, and most likely in opposition to such “help”. Since Western NGOs, radical chicists, and “progressives” insist on running interference for the state, we have to reject their ideology and prescriptions as well. (They’re still often useful for their reporting.)
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May 14, 2013

The Monsanto Court and Corporatism

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Sorry for the light posting for awhile. Lots of things to do, and lots of things on my mind.
 
I don’t have anything new to say right now about the “supreme” court’s anointment of Monsanto, but I’ll refer to what I already said.
 
One thing which occurs to me, as I read some stuff on this and see the confusion of liberals and radical-chicists, as well as those ostensibly concerned with food freedom, is that it’s another example of how no viewpoint other than total anti-corporatism is sufficient to understand the political world.
 
Thus, readers of this blog know that I predicted a unanimous pro-Monsanto decision. Similarly, almost everyone predicted wrongly that the corporate court would strike down Obama’s “health insurance” poll tax. But true anti-corporatists understood how essential it was to the corporate imperative that the commerce clause be extended in this totalitarian direction.
 
My point is that anti-corporatism demonstrates its superior predictive value, which in turn is evidence for its fundamental truth. It’s hard to see which competing world view, other than corporatism itself, accurately describes the state of civilization.

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April 6, 2013

Two-For-One Sale (Deficit Terrorism and the Monsanto Protection Act)

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1. There’s no such thing as a deficit crisis as such, and any “budget crisis” is purely fabricated. It’s a government exercise in trying to confuse and scare the people. That’s why the term “deficit terrorism” is precise and appropriate. What the central government and corporate media do in inventing this problem and then conjuring up a mass of fear-itself propaganda around it is a textbook case of terrorism in its psychological aspect. It’s a pressure group trying to sow fear and intimidation among a populace, in order to force political concessions out of it. In this case the enforced concession is always acquiescence in “austerity”, which is the willful and unnecessary gutting of whatever’s left of government spending which isn’t corporate welfare. (While I’m not here to affirmatively stick up for any aspect of the central government, I’ll always say that if you want to cut government spending for any reason whatsoever, the place to start is always with corporate welfare, which is the most egregious, worthless, and destructive kind of government spending. Abolish that, and then see what problems are left. The fact that conservatives and most “libertarians” support corporate welfare proves that they lie when they claim to oppose big government, massive taxation, massive regulation of the economy. Corporatism is always the most aggressive, malignant, and massive manifestation of all of these.)
 
Meanwhile, the fact that corporate welfare is never cut, is only constantly, massively expanded, is proof that no one in the system really thinks deficits or the debt are problems in themselves. It’s proof that anyone who says so is consciously, willfully lying, with malice aforethought. This would be very strong condemnatory evidence at a New Nuremburg, where it came time to try the Streicherist propagandists. 
 
2. The latest incarnation of the deficit kabuki had an added feature, a rider which turned an appropriations bill into what democracy advocates are calling the Monsanto Protection Act. This rider would neuter judicial review* of USDA GMO approvals, by allowing planting to continue even after courts find that the USDA hadn’t lived up to its mandatory procedures for approval. The rider is merely an extension of the standard GMO contamination process. The goal is to get the things into the ecosystem and economy, no matter how, and establish them as invasive weeds which are then extremely difficult to eradicate. In countries like Brazil and India the crops were widely illegally planted, and governments then claimed this accomplished fact as justification for legalizing them (which is what they’d wanted to do in the first place, but had refrained on account of democracy pressures). In the US the USDA simply defied a court order imposing a moratorium on Roundup Ready sugarbeets. Now the legislature is following up, legalizing the previously extra-legal and illegal procedures.
 
[*This legislative rider is the kind of thing which will satisfy the passive corporatists in the judicial branch. There's almost no chance of courts finding the rider itself unconstitutional, since no judges I'm aware of find corporatism as such to be unconstitutional. None rule that constitutionally there's no such thing as corporate "rights". For example, that's the way in which, fundamentally, Citizens United was a 9-0 decision. The so-called "5-4" was only on the technical ground that four passive corporatists didn't want to overturn a law Congress had passed. But no one dissented on the ground that there's no such thing as a corporate speech right. The fact that judicial passivists try to decide things as narrowly as possible is proof of their bias in favor of the status quo of power, regardless of any fundamental constitutional issue.]
 
3. Senator Mikulski, head of the appropriations committee, rammed the thing through over Jon Tester’s attempt to get the rider stripped. Only when she received severe criticism did she pretend not to have known what she was doing. This is certainly a lie. She did her job, serving the corporate imperative. That’s why she was given this committee chairmanship in the first place.
 
Under pressure, she seized the opportunity to make this a two-for-one. She not only served Monsanto, but gave as her excuse that this was necessary in order to accomplish the critical goal of getting the appropriations bill passed. She opportunistically tied her pro-Monsanto action with her action in propagating the fraud that the central government budget is in some kind of inherent crisis.
 
Sure enough, liberal NGO cadres rushed to her defense. A hack from the Center for Food Safety ran interference.
 

“The American public have relied on Senate Democrats to be a backstop against dangerous policy riders like this,” said Colin O’Neil, director of government affairs for the Center for Food Safety. “We call on [Mikulski] to ensure that this rider is stricken from any future appropriations bills.”

But, O’Neil added, the language did not originate with Mikulski. Rather, it was included in legislation that had been developed before she took the chairmanship….”Her hands were tied by the negotiations that had previously happened,” O’Neil said of Mikulski. “We recognize the tough spot she was in.”

O’Neil said food safety groups nevertheless hope to keep the pressure on Mikulski to get the language removed later this year, when the government must pass its next round of funding legislation.

 
(And to keep asking for money. And you see what your donations to the “food safety groups” pay for – pro-Monsanto lies, wherever the Democratic Party is involved, and endlessly fruitless “working within the system”. It also gets you those groups’ more vicious support for Monsanto’s corporate state, through their cheerleading for the Food Control Act.)
 
CFS chief Andrew Kimbrell put it this way:
 
In this hidden backroom deal, Senator Mikulski turned her back on consumer, environmental, and farmer protection in favor of corporate welfare for biotech companies such as Monsanto. This abuse of power is not the kind of leadership the public has come to expect from Senator Mikulski or the Democrat Majority in the Senate.
 
Contrary to such lies, this is exactly the kind of “leadership” we can always expect from the Democratic Party. The evidence record is massive, longstanding, and unblemished. If Kimbrell believes it, he’s simply exhibiting a pathological level of flat-earth cult-think. 
 
This is a good example two allied phenomena:
 
1. System NGO types, and liberals in general, are there as pro-corporate triangulators. We have two opposed trenchlines, humanity against corporatism. Liberals, and especially NGO types, are out in no-man’s-land, running interference, obstructing our shots, and helping to set up corporate shots.
 
2. System NGO types, and liberals in general, are there to build a fence and patrol it. This fence is meant to fence in the acceptable kind of dissent, with reformist ideology, and actions like “vote for Democrats”, “petition Obama”, perhaps “file a lawsuit” (ouch! this rider puts a crimp in that one!), qualifying as acceptable. Meanwhile actual analysis and criticism of the system itself, and the ideas and actions of fighting for real structural change, including advocacy of things that the vast majority of humanity actually wants, are to be fenced out and forbidden.
 
In this case the “anti-GMO movement”, in the wretched state it currently is, felt very uncomfortable condemning a famous liberal Democrat, and in such a critical context as the deficit fraud, so the likes of the CFS rushed to try to lull any grassroots anger, and erstwhile anti-GMO reportage sites rushed to publish these lying extenuations.
 
How is it that an excellent journalism site like GMWatch doesn’t recognize pro-GMO policy and deficit scaremongering, always meant to generate the political environment for imposing “austerity”, as affiliated aspects of corporatism? How is it they don’t see the obvious affinity between the corporate media’s manufactured “GMO science” and its similarly manufactured “deficit economics”? As the pieces they aggregated here demonstrate, the corporate system lies about the alleged need for a “budget deal” in the exact same anti-evidence, anti-rational way it lies about the alleged need for GMOs.
 
This is an example of how, to build a true abolition movement, we need a far more holistically and systematically anti-corporatist orientation. As things are, even the better groups and sites frequently lapse into their own kind of anti-holistic “NPK mentality”, as Albert Howard called it. It’s not constructive to be anti-GMO within a myopic mindset inclined to uncritically accept other aspects of corporatism. That’s not going to work toward abolishing GMOs.

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March 2, 2013

GMO Labeling Vis the True Food Sovereignty, GMO Abolition Movement

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Commenter Lidia posted an excellent report on her experience at an organizational meeting for Vermont Right to Know.
 
Here’s my somewhat negative review of the campaign, so far as I’ve learned about it from her and elsewhere. I’ll let this criticism of the Vermont effort stand in for my growing doubts about the whole “labeling” premise, which I see as, in general, a typical collaborationist “market solution” which by its nature cannot be any real solution; and in particular as part of the GMO “co-existence” scam. This is the scam whose basic premise is that organic agriculture and humanity can live in the same world with GMOs and the corporations who purvey them.
 
But we know this is false. GMOs are totalitarian, politically and environmentally. Totalitarian means there is literally no limit to one’s aspired domination, and that one in fact has the potential power to aspire to total domination. We know that Monsanto, the rest of the GMO cartel, and their flunkey governments recognize no limits to agricultural enclosure and domination. We know that’s the one and only reason GMOs exist in the first place. (They have no redeeming qualities, don’t work even at the two things they’re “supposed” to do, be herbicide tolerant and produce their own insecticide, have no natural market among farmers or eaters, and are 100% dependent on corporate welfare, government lies and thuggery, and trapping farmers on an indenture treadmill. Their one and only purpose, as Monsanto has been quite frank in stating, is total domination of the world food supply.)
 
We also know that GMOs cannot be prevented from contaminating and polluting every possible part of the ecology. Organic canola is basically impossible in Canada. Same for sugar beets in Oregon. It’s less and less possible to find non-polluted corn and soy shipments. This isn’t even counting the cartel’s intentional planting so as to contaminate the entire agriculture in Brazil, India, and perhaps with alfalfa in the US. Here too, there can be no co-existence. 
 
Are the organizers of labeling campaigns sincere about Food Sovereignty and abolishing GMOs? The fact that the Vermont organizers are already flouting the boycott of the corporations who gave money to defeat Right to Know doesn’t bode well. Nor is their evident place as part of the industrial organic complex. I don’t doubt that they’ve internalized much of the system mindset. Thus they’ve unilaterally dumbed the bill down to comply with central government directives, voluntarily racing to the bottom. (In California they did the same thing, and then added stupidity to timidity by saying stuff about THEIR OWN BILL like “loopholes are good”! I’d almost have wanted to vote No just out of contempt for such a lame campaign.)
 
It’s Politics 101 that you demand far more than you really want to achieve, and that where you’re trying to get Better Elitism (begging the elites for labeling is certainly an elitist strategy; indeed, here it’s not even a ballot initiative, but trying to get a law passed), you supplement it with as much grassroots direct action as possible. Therefore anyone sincere and competent would encourage direct labeling in the supermarkets, as one example of the kind of things citizens of a real democracy can and will do, as their right and responsibility.
 
The strategic principles listed at the event contain one good point – they acknowledge that the central government won’t do anything. (I hope they acknowledge that anything the central government does would be a scam.) So they’re capable of digesting the evidence that far. Maybe it’s possible for them to do so about state governments as well.
 
There’s also several bad points:
 
“Common language among all the state bills will offer “as level a playing field as possible” for food companies to comply”
 
As I said, voluntary racing to the bottom. And why would the people want to “offer a level playing field” to criminal organizations that never offered it to us? That have done all they can to deprive us of any playing field at all, let alone a “level one”. And why should we want to “play” this game at all, and with such cheaters?
 
“They “didn’t want retailers to have to be responsible” under the law (instead, producers)”
 
Why not? Is there a tactical rationale for this, or is it some stupid moral misguidance? Retailers had their chance to strangle GMOs in the cradle and chose instead to join the conspiracy against humanity. They’re enemies, not bystanders. As for what’s good tactics, I haven’t thought it through completely, but my first thought is that targeting the weak link, the most publicly exposed and vulnerable link, is often a good tactic. Supermarket chains are far more vulnerable than Monsanto. (Not to mention all their other bad effects.) It’s worked well in keeping most GMOs out of Europe. Perhaps the winningest union going, the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (one of the few that’s been winning at all), has based its strategy on targeting one retailer after another.
 
Most of all, it’s up to we the people to take matters into our own hands, not “the states”. But that truth may be frightening for some of these cadres, who by training and temperament may identify more with Monsanto than with small farmers, indigenous peoples, and true democracy activists (that is, active participatory citizens).
 
But here’s the core question to ask any advocate of system reformism, i.e. Better Elitism – When this fails, THEN what do you want to do? If the answer is vague, or boils down to, “keep doing what’s already failed, ad infinitum and ad nauseum”, we know we’re dealing with con artists whose only real agenda is to keep dissent firmly within system-endorsed bounds.
 
The right question would be, “If this doesn’t work, will you then convene a conference dedicated to enshrining abolition as the only goal, and working on strategy only toward this goal?”
 
We already have the fact that this was already tried in Vermont and already failed, for one reason and one reason only, because the state government doesn’t want to do it. So why would that same government change its mind? The same has been true in every other state where the legislative route has been tried. How much evidence will be needed? The fact is, where the propagators of the “co-existence” scam (of which labeling is a part) aren’t conscious liars (I think the likes of Whole Foods Market, Hirshfield, etc. certainly are), they’re still acting according to indelible system-compliant limitations. They’ve internalized the rules of the criminal system, and by now voluntarily collaborate with it. The real goal is to try to prevent a real anti-GMO and anti-corporate food movement from cohering and gathering force.
 
What could cause me to change my mind about this tactic and goal? It’s tough, because I argue that these campaigns have unilaterally pre-failed by making their proposed legislation so lame. I think labels for GMO-fed meat and dairy are also necessary. (I’m well aware that the central government claims to have “pre-emptive” power over this. So what? To unilaterally cave in on account of such a bogus and tyrannical presumption is hardly in the Spirit of ’76. Why not go ahead and challenge these usurpers? We can at least agree upon and publicize the fact of this usurpation and this illegitimacy. Would that cost the state money from the central government? If so, that should be seen as a feature and not a bug. We’re never going to take back our political and economic sovereignty while we remain a dependent cog of the central money system. Everything is interrelated, and we must be organic and holistic about our philosophy and activism. To think anti-GMO activism can be a stand-alone campaign which doesn’t fundamentally challenge the entire structure is, ironically, a perfect example of the NPK mentality that’s destroying our agriculture, and which was the ideological fount of GMOs in the first place.
 
On that note, I’ve heard of an ongoing secession movement in Vermont. I don’t know its specific ideology, but perhaps there’s a ready-made ally, once people get serious about Food Sovereignty.)
 
Leaving aside the scope of the labeling, I’d have to see the thing passed and fully enforced. More importantly, I’d have to see the campaign organize itself as a permanent grassroots organization dedicated to enforcement of this measure, and to expanding the action as far as it can go, toward full abolition. This is a non-negotiable baseline for any democracy activism worthy of the name. Within-the-system reforms like getting a law passed are always to be seen as supplementary to directly democratic movement-building and direct action.
 
But more likely, the elite organizers of the campaign wouldn’t see grassroots action as even a supplement to the “legalistic” action. On the contrary, we’d have proof that the campaign had been a con job if, once the bill was passed, the Leaders were to turn to whatever grass roots had sprung up and say, “We won! Now you can disband and go home. We, Your Betters, will now confer with our fellow elites in government and at the corporations. We’ll try to keep you posted.”
 
I’d say that if we the people want to support a labeling campaign, we must do so as a parallel grassroots organization, built from day one to be a permanent, ever-growing movement. Under no circumstances should we let ourselves be “led” by elites, however well-meaning they may seem. We must lead ourselves.
 
I think the answer is that existing groups won’t be part of the true wellspring which shall one day surge to a purifying Flood.
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June 10, 2012

We’re All Lumpenproles Now – GMO Death Camps

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The Green Revolution is still fraudulently touted as having helped to “feed the world”. This Big Lie is necessary to justify the sequel, that a second GMO revolution is necessary to continue this feeding.
 
In reality, agriculture doesn’t strive to feed a population which spontaneously increases. Cause and effect go in the opposite direction – industrial agriculture is a supply-driven process, and to the extent this extra food is available to the populace, population will increase in response.
 
What the Green Revolution really did was drive up the population while accelerating the arc of enclosure, driving ever more people off the land and into the cities. Shantytowns were the direct, intended result of this agricultural policy. The goal (as proven by the fact that it’s been the clear result, and that elites have continued the policy in light of this result; that proves that they intend the result) was to further separate humanity from the land, further assault subsistence food economies and replace them with food commodification, forcibly turn subsistence farmers into “job”-seekers, drive up the population, drive up the proportion of the population which is food insecure, drive up the number of unemployed, in both of the latter ways increase the desperation and infighting among the destitute masses, and in all these ways aggravate and accelerate the processes of colonialism and corporatism in general. Today’s GMO onslaught is an escalated version of all this. That’s why neoliberalism calls GMOs a “second green revolution”.
 
It doesn’t increase yield (temporarily cheap, plentiful fossil fuels, along with age-old traditional breeding, did that), and it’s not intended to. It’s not more efficient, and it’s not intended to be. It’s more “efficient” only from the point of view of purging human labor from the corporate economy and purging human beings from the land.
 
I defy anyone to explain how the logic isn’t that human beings (except for a rump slave class) must be physically purged from the Earth itself.
 
A real Nazi like Hitler at least had intellectual and moral clarity regarding his policy, unlike corporate liberals or conservatives. They follow the exact same logic, but out of cowardice or stupidity remain willfully ignorant of the fact.
 
But what could it mean to want to purge all people from the land, but not want their physical deaths? A shantytown makes zero sense from ANY point of view – moral, rational, practical. Even from the point of view of the most predatory, exploitative corporation, a shantytown is nothing but a waste dump, filled with potentially dangerous toxic waste. (It’s rare, but the inhabitants do sometimes rise up against the system.) The only way to make any sense whatsoever of the phenomenon is to view shantytowns as putative death camps.

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May 15, 2012

Useful Idiots – Food Sovereignty Case Study

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While looking for some information for another post, I ended up reading some older posts at Marion Nestle’s blog. It was as annoying as one would expect, reading a corporate-state-reformist who thinks Better Hierarchy will solve the problems created only by corporatist hierarchy as such. Here’s a good example (which also includes some pro-Democrat Party tribalism).
 

On Monday this week [July 2009], Michael Taylor began his new job as special assistant to the FDA Commissioner for food safety. He will be in charge of implementing whatever food safety laws Congress finally decides to pass.

I know that what I am about to say will surprise, if not shock, many of you, but I think he’s an excellent choice for this job. Yes, I know he worked for Monsanto, not only once (indirectly) but twice (directly). And yes, he’s the first person whose name is mentioned when anyone talks about the “revolving door” between the food industry and government. And yes, he signed off on the FDA’s consumer-unfriendly policies on labeling genetically modified foods.

But before you decide that I must have drunk the Kool Aid on this one, hear me out. He really is a good choice for this job. Why? Because he managed to get USDA to institute HACCP (science-based food safety regulations) for meat and poultry against the full opposition of the meat industry — a truly heroic accomplishment. His position on food safety has been strong and consistent for years. He favors a single food agency, HACCP for all foods, and accountability and enforcement. We need this for FDA-regulated foods (we also need enforcement for USDA-regulated foods, but he won’t be able to touch that unless Congress says so). So he’s the person most likely to be able to get decent regulations in place and get them enforced.

 
(This also sheds some light on Taylor’s liberal fan club in general.)
 
It’s typical of reform-corporatists to seek further concentration as the solution to every problem generated by concentration. This exactly parallels the Tower of Babel of corporatism in general. Every crisis must be met, not by ending the malevolent and destructive practices which create the crisis, but by doubling down on the evil, adding another layer to the already tottering tower. Reformists are either imitative parasites on the monster, or an indelible part of it.
 
It’s also typical that they fail to recognize the difference between a systematic corporate totalitarian and a yahoo, and that there are sometimes disagreements between them. Consider this tableau: In the Reagan administration there were lots of deregulation zealots who had come to see deregulation as an end in itself. They lost sight of the overriding profit imperative. At that time Monsanto had settled on its master strategy, which included going all in on riding the government thug/bagman to profit victory. So they wanted a full suite of regulation, but of course pro-corporate regulation. They wanted government proclamations, certifications, PR campaigns, corporatized public-funded research, globalization assistance, aggression against small competitors, an escalated intellectual property regime, and of course monumental amounts of corporate welfare.
 
But on account of the fact that the administration had come to see “regulation” as bad, Monsanto had to request a meeting with VP Bush and lecture him like a small child on how “regulation vs. deregulation” is meaningless in itself, but rather that the right policy is regulation and/or deregulation, depending on whatever will increase corporate enclosure, concentration, domination, profit, power.
 
Similarly, Taylor had to overcome some opposition from yahoos in the meat-packer sector who were too short-sighted to see that the HACCP, while nominally representing increased regulation, was really designed to increase sector concentration and power. It has since had that effect.
 
But corporate liberals like Nestle see only the more scabrous bad guy who opposed something, and assume this must mean the thing is good. But that doesn’t follow at all. (There’s where we see the parallel with “progressive” tribalism – wherever a Republican opposes something, it must be good. And since Taylor was nominally a Clinton cadre, and is now an Obama cadre, it must mean he’s good. Um, no.)
 
(For another example, that’s how the national Sierra Club happily jumped into bed with Chesapeake Energy and fracking, as soon as Aubrey McClendon bad-mouthed the coal rackets.)
 
Similarly, the real world effect of HACCP is meaningless to a useful idiot reformist. All that matters is that Democratic administrations support it, while some bad guys oppose it. (Though how Nestle wrapped her mind around the fact that Big Ag supported the Food Control Act she’s shilling for here, so that there is no “bad guy” from the liberal point of view, I don’t know. I guess Party tribalism trumps all in the end.)

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April 8, 2012

Kangaroo Courts and the Health Racket Mandate (Reprise)

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(This is an edited re-post of an earlier piece. I thought that in light of the looming “decision” on the health racket mandate by the supremely corporatist court, it might be useful to revisit the nature of this corporatist jurisprudence.)
 
A federal judge has given the first adverse ruling against one of the many lawsuits declaring Obama’s health racket Mandate unconstitutional. The ruling demonstrates the “logic” of a corporatist ideologue and how he views the Constitution. A corporatist assumes as the god-given order of things that the purpose of America is to be mined by powerful corporate interests. He then views the Constitution as purely instrumental toward this goal. As we’ll see, this judge views the artificial, ideologically fabricated and imposed “market” as sacrosanct and beyond the Constitution’s purview. He views the written Constitution, and by extension the sovereign people’s inherent constitution, as subordinate to the corporate imperative. This is the essence of corporatist ideology. It views sovereignty itself as reposing in corporations, not the people. The constitution is only the corporate constitution. The written Constitution is therefore the servant of corporations.
 
A judge like this might even try to argue that the fact that the Constitution never once mentions the word “corporation” is proof of his thesis that corporations are not below the Constitution, but above it. At any rate he’d argue that the absence of such specification gives him license to interpret things that way.
 
The human truth is the exact opposite. Society exists in the first place only of, by, and for human beings. Sovereignty reposes only in the people. The constitution can never be anything but of and for the political health of the people. The written Constitution can be legitimately interpreted only toward this human imperative. Corporations have no right to exist at all, and certainly have no right to act against the people. Wherever they do, any government has an affirmative obligation to smash them. Where it fails to do so, let alone where it actively supports corporate organized crime, it abandons all sovereignty, legitimacy, and authority. The people then have the right and obligation to repudiate the system, smash the criminals themselves, and redeem society on a human basis.
 
Let’s go to the case. The suit claims the health racket bailout in general, and in particular the racket Mandate, violates the Commerce Clause, the 5th and 10th amendments, the Free Exercise of religion*, and that it’s an unconstitutional tax. The decision rejects the demand for a preliminary injunction and throws the case out completely. The decision focuses on rejecting the Commerce claim, also rejects part of the tax claim, and declares it doesn’t need to reach another part.
 
In the so-called “factual background” the judge launches right into the propaganda. He intones:
 

The Health Care Reform Act seeks to reduce the number of uninsured Americans
and the escalating costs they impose on the health care system.
(p. 2)

 
and follows with a series of details. This is standard political fraud from the bench. As a matter of dogma, the judge is supposed to assume the legislature is a public servant and not a criminal cabal. So the court’s default is to aid and abet organized crime in the legislature. At the very least, even if the court is going to strike down an act (because of some ideological squabble among elites, not because the act is against the people), it still engages in this pretense of legislative good faith. That’s SCOTUS dogma going back a long way. (Anyone who follows the corporate media is familiar with the how it’s their established practice to report as fact the self-proclaimed intentions and mindset of elites, especially political elites. The courts have the same practice.)
 
Everywhere else judges are supposed to infer motives from actions. Why is that reversed here, and the dogmatically assumed motive is used tendentiously to interpret the action? It’s because here the system is functioning as an integrated machine. Elsewhere it’s the system against the people or individuals, so there the interpretive dynamic is reversed.
 
So here this judge proclaims that the Mandate is “integral to the legislative effort”, but everything he claims about what that effort is, and the constitutionality of the effort itself, is a lie. The Mandate is indeed integral to the effort, but the effort’s intention and goal is the opposite of Congressional and judicial lies. The effort isn’t to ensure better health care for more people at lower cost. A Congress which wanted to do that would’ve instituted Single Payer. Period.
 
The effort is to bail out the parasitic insurance rackets, who already have an institutionalized anti-competitive monopoly, by absolving them of having to compete with non-participation as well. That’s the one and only objective of Obamacare.
 
The decision moves quickly (p. 3) to bashing alleged deadbeats, the mythical free riders at the ER. But the entire premise of “the legislative effort” is to bail out a tremendous but politically powerful deadbeat and parasite, the insurance racket. So right at the outset we can see the judge’s bad faith. It’s not possible to be concerned about free riders but still support this deadbeat bailout bill. So on its face anyone who supports the bill (or finds it constitutional) but claims to be concerned about free riders is lying. Again, if Congress had been concerned about free riders, it would have enacted Single Payer instead of bailing out the insurance parasite. So on its face the judge’s entire rationale regarding the legislative intent is invalid.
 
We also have the moral fact that anyone amid a system based on organized corruption, legalized fraud, and massive robbery in the form of corporate welfare who would ever make a top-down anti-deadbeat argument must be a vile immoral criminal himself. It’s not possible to face such monumental system crime and still say the individual deadbeat is just as bad, or to bother with him at all. And then there’s the fact that the vast majority of individuals in that position are not deadbeats at all, but the victims of an aggressive kleptocracy which has mugged them into poverty.
 
As I said, this proves the judge is corrupt and acts in moral bad faith, so his “legal” reasoning must be judged from that point of view.
 
He has the haughty nerve to claim that it’s individuals, mugging victims who show up at the ER, who are “shifting costs onto third parties”. But the fact is that we the people ARE the victimized “third party” here, while the rackets and their bought politicians and judges are the only market “participants”, the only “stakeholders”, as their own flunkies would concede.
 
In a gesture of noblesse oblige the judge grants that the plaintiffs had standing to sue (p. 4). (But not before a lecture on the monetization of standing, how as far as the courts are concerned the only measure of citizenship is property, and the only measure of values or injury to those values is a monetary injury. This filthy doctrine must always be enforced. As usual, the first priority is to deny true citizen access to the law.)
 
The judge, as a petty crook aping a benevolent despot, magnanimously grants that a person without much money may already be feeling trepidation over the Mandate and acting accordingly, so standing is granted. The whole passage is sickening. The judge’s hypocritical, bloodless, wonkish, trickle-down “generosity” is even more repulsive than open, naked greed. How could any decent person even discuss this without outrage over the fact that those already suffering from the depredations of finance and insurance sector gangsters are, by the judge’s own admission*, to be made to suffer even more in order to pay yet further extortion to the most worthless and repellant criminals afflicting us today?
 
[*P. 8: "..the injury-in-fact in this case is the present financial pressure experienced by plaintiffs due to the requirements of the Individual Mandate."
 
This pressure is being put on by already-rich robbers who want to steal even more, and helping them commit this further robbery is the one and only intent and goal of this bill. That's the vision of "civilization" and "law" this judge seeks to uphold.]
 
We get to the Commerce Clause. Here’s the first time I’ve come across the Orwellian name for the Mandate: the “Shared Responsibility Payment” (p.11). Deciphering the totalitarian code: It’s the Full Responsibility of those who do all the work to hand over almost all they produce as extortion Payment to wealthy parasites who have and assume Zero Responsibility.
 
The judge is honest about this much: The Mandate is regulation of “inactivity, or a person’s mere existence within our Nation’s boundaries.” He admits it’s a poll tax.
 

The crux of plaintiffs’ argument is that the federal government has never attempted
to regulate inactivity, or a person’s mere existence within our Nation’s boundaries, under
the auspices of the Commerce Clause. It is plaintiffs’ position that if the Act is found
constitutional, the Commerce Clause would provide Congress with the authority to regulate
every aspect of our lives, including our choice to refrain from acting.
(p.11)

 
The decision says this case involves the third aspect of Interstate Commerce – “those activities that substantially affect interstate commerce.” Since that’s as vague as can be, and since by the reasoning here it can apply to literally anything the system wants it to, the judge confirms what we who oppose the Mandate always said. This Mandate is not only a crime in itself but a totalitarian precedent. If it goes through it can serve as the template for mandates to buy literally anything the system wants to force upon us.
 

The Supreme Court has expanded the reach of the Commerce Clause to reach
purely local, non-commercial activity, simply because it is an integral part of a broader
statutory scheme that permissibly regulates interstate commerce. Two cases, decided
sixty years apart, demonstrate the breadth of the Commerce power and the deference
accorded Congress’s judgments. (p. 12)

 
The decision discusses two highly disputed cases, Wickard v. Filburn and Gonzales v. Reich, as alleged precedents. With seeming lack of awareness of the ideological biases involved, in his own case and that of SCOTUS judges, he trumpets the striking down of anti-gun and anti-domestic violence laws as the SCOTUS philosophically “placing limits” on Congress.
 
Um, no. The judges on the court majorities simply support gun rights but don’t support marijuana rights, and don’t care about domestic violence. That’s the one and only difference which went into these decisions – how the subject of each case squared with their non-judicial ideology. The judicial ideology almost without exception is servant to the political ideology. Scalia’s anti-federalist vote in Gonzales was a spotlight example of how fraudulent his ideological pretensions are. He simply doesn’t like marijuana, period.
 
The decision admits the novelty of the case.
 

Plaintiffs in the present case focus on the common fact that each
of the regulations that survived Supreme Court scrutiny under the Commerce Clause
regulated an economic “activity,” as opposed to the “inactivity” they have demonstrated by
merely existing and not purchasing health care insurance. The Supreme Court has always
required an economic or commercial component in order to uphold an act under the
Commerce Clause. The Court has never needed to address the activity/inactivity
distinction advanced by plaintiffs because in every Commerce Clause case presented thus
far, there has been some sort of activity. (p.15)

 
To get around this the judge engages in what he himself calls “mental gymnastics”, and more fraudulent divination of Congressional intent.
 
Now we get to the core of obscenity:
 

The health care market is unlike other markets. No one can guarantee his or her
health, or ensure that he or she will never participate in the health care market. Indeed, the
opposite is nearly always true. The question is how participants in the health care market
pay for medical expenses – through insurance, or through an attempt to pay out of pocket
with a backstop of uncompensated care funded by third parties. This phenomenon of costshifting
is what makes the health care market unique.
(p. 16)

 
Think about that sentence, the two allegedly equivalent and interlinked propositions:
 
“No one can guarantee health..” That’s self-evident.
 
“…or ensure that he or she will never participate in the health care market.”
 
What? We could ensure we don’t have to participate in a criminal market by getting rid of it. We could, for example, institute Single Payer, which would cost far less, provide far more care far more efficiently, and would even solve that alleged individual free rider issue the likes of the judge claim to have such a fetish about. It would not be a moral affront to the people, as it would eradicate the free riding parasite rackets. We’d be free of their depredations and extortions.
 
But the decision depicts this “market” as a law of the universe. It would be hard to imagine a more grotesque example of begging the question. I don’t know if the conservative plaintiffs themselves care, but in the case of we who reject the Mandate on citizenship grounds, we reject any constitutional basis for the entire system based on private health “insurance”. We didn’t try to sue over it before (and of course we would have lacked “standing”), so long as we had the option of non-participation.
 
But now we’re going to have to sue against this Mandate. But when we declare* the Mandate unconstitutional, we’re saying that’s the most aggressive unconstitutional manifestation of an extra-constitutional, outlaw system.
 
[* And we as citizens do declare it so. We do not beg a court to do so for us. We demand that if the courts really do serve the people, they'll ratify what we the people already know and declare.
 
Since the prospect that these suits will do the trick is dubious, we need to start preparing for citizen disobedience and resistance.]
 
So the judge’s rationale is non-responsive. (The fact that “the health care market is unlike other markets” is also proof that private health insurance itself is a conceptual and moral absurdity.) Especially as he moves on to a series of flippant absurdities.
 

As inseparable and integral members of the health care services market, plaintiffs have made a choice regarding the method of payment for the services they expect to receive. The government makes the apropos analogy of paying by credit card rather than by check.
(p. 17)

 
We are NOT “members of this market”. This market is an alien assault being artificially inflicted upon us. The “market” has absolutely nothing to do with health care. The two are completely separable and separated. Paying by “..credit card or check…” – when of course the real issue centers on the fact that it’s a mugger demanding this payment in the first place.
 

Similarly, plaintiffs in this case are participants in the
health care services market. They are not outside the market. While plaintiffs describe the
Commerce Clause power as reaching economic activity, the government’s characterization
of the Commerce Clause reaching economic decisions is more accurate.

 
We are NOT “participants”. We ARE “outside the market”. We are disenfranchised, coercively indentured subjects of this “market”. Victims.
 
What level of depravity does it take for someone to not only ignore the one fact of the case, but to turn around and accuse the victim of that very crime? What can decent people do with a criminal like that?
 
Now he comes to his decision, and his ultimate lie:
 

The Act regulates a broader interstate market in health care services. This is not
a market created by Congress, it is one created by the fundamental need for health care
and the necessity of paying for such services received. The provision at issue addresses
cost-shifting in those markets and operates as an essential part of a comprehensive
regulatory scheme. The uninsured, like plaintiffs, benefit from the “guaranteed issue”
provision in the Act, which enables them to become insured even when they are already
sick. This benefit makes imposing the minimum coverage provision appropriate. (p. 18)

 
This is incontrovertibly a market created by Congress. On its face that’s a clear fact. The bill’s very purpose is to bail out the rackets who, even though they have an anti-trust exemption (another creation of Congress), and can therefore quash innovation and competition, are increasingly unable to compete with non-participation, which more and more Americans are rationally choosing, as is their constitutional right as citizens. The purpose of this bill is to eliminate this competition as well. The purpose of this decision is to eliminate our constitutional rights.
 
And once again, what we must always remember immediately, every time we hear anyone like this judge say a word about “shifting costs”, “third parties”, free riding, or any other “deadbeat” language, is the obscene fact that this “market” exists at all for one reason only. It’s to enable the parasitic extortions and extractions of this insurance racket which is indeed a third party to us all, which does nothing but shift costs to us all, free ride upon us all. That’s the one and only reason the bill exists at all. That’s the one and only reason this decision was made the way it was.
 
Every word of it is a crime against the Constitution, just like the bill itself. We are under the thumb of stateless, lawless, anti-sovereign predators. This Mandate is a major step forward for their criminal regime. As this incident makes clear, we cannot rely on the courts to help us uphold our constitution. We must do that ourselves.
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March 28, 2012

The Health Racket Mandate, Toward Other Corporate Mandates

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A few thoughts on the health racket mandate, for anyone who supports or knows someone who supports it, constitutionally and/or on policy grounds.
 
(This is also for anyone who’s wondering about my rage vs. liberals, as I expressed in this post earlier today, for example. Look at this mandate as a prime example of the incoherency and malevolence I describe.)
 
Let’s recap the history.
 
1. In the mid-20th century Congress granted antitrust exemptions to the health insurance racketeers, giving them monopolies or oligopolies in every state. This is a command economy, a forced market. The only alternative for most people is non-participation.
 
2. On account of this growing non-participation, as well as the desperate financial straits of many insurance rackets, especially post-2008, the government instituted a bailout of the sector, in the form of Obamacare. (It’s also an austerity policy and a union-busting measure.) This is Obama’s core policy. The funds for this bailout are to be extorted in the form of a poll tax imposed on human beings, as the price of their physical existence. (The mandated “policies” themselves will be worthless, and subsidies to purchase them will never materialize.)
 
3. Supporters of this policy now argue that it’s constitutional, thanks to totalitarian commerce clause jurisprudence. I’ve extensively covered this here, here, and here. (For the health racket bailout and Stamp mandate in general, see my posts catalogued here.)
 
For anyone who supports this, please explain:
 
1. Does this mean that if Congress decides that proprietary GMOs are to be normative in the same way it has dictated for private health insurance, it can mandate purchase of these seeds by all growers? Impose penalties on heirloom seeds, or ban them? What about other agricultural inputs?
 
(See here for the shaky financial position of Monsanto. Pro-GMO Obama policy, tangibly accelerated right around the time Monsanto’s travails hit the papers, can already be seen as a Monsanto bailout. I’ll write more on this soon.)
 
2. Does this mean that if Congress decides that big box retailing is to be normative in the same way it has dictated for private health insurance, it can mandate shopping at Walmart and similar boxes (say, by having the IRS require receipts)? Can it penalize or ban independent retailers?
 
(See here for Walmart’s increasing market difficulties.)
 
Not for a moment do I mean for either of these examples to be taken as hyperbole or in any Swiftian sense. If the health racket mandate can be enacted, then both of these, and any number of comparable policies, would be enactable by the same logic. I have no doubt about the system’s will to enact any such policy, limited only by whatever political fears it may have.
 
 

December 11, 2011

Everywhere We See the Pattern

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1. The system is based on dependency, conformism, submission.
 
2. The system uses money to render its own processes and products “cheaper” than the “more expensive” age-old human ways of life, in food, manufacture, education, politics, culture, and many others.
 
3. The system ways are actually far more expensive than the human ways, but are temporarily rendered cheaper by shifting most of the costs to hidden taxes on the consumer, to various dispossessed groups, to the environment, and to the future. The system cheapness is nothing but accounting fraud.
 
4. For example, the system uses taxpayer money to subsidize its ways and render them cheaper. This has the dual effect of rendering the human way of life more expensive even as we’re forced to pay from our ever-diminishing financial base to subsidize the system which assaults us. 
 
5. To repeat, the fact that we have to look to our “finances” is a purely artificial state of affairs imposed upon us from the top down. Money is unnecessary and undesirable from any point of view other than that of the 1%. It’s part of a command economy.
 
6. So we must be clear that this government and the economic system it imposes comprise an artificial tyranny. It has no legitimacy, and on a practical level it never helps us, but only harms us. We’d be far better off without it.
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