By Kathleen B. Jones for The Conversation. In my view, “Origins” offers both a warning and an implicit call to resistance. In today’s context, Arendt would invite her readers to question what is being presented as reality. When President Trump and his advisers claim dangerous immigrants are “pouring” into the country, or stealing Americans’ jobs, are they silencing dissent or distracting us from the truth? “Origins” wasn’t intended to be a formulaic blueprint for how totalitarian rulers emerge or what actions they take. It was a plea for attentive, thoughtful civil disobedience to emerging authoritarian rule. What makes “Origins” so salient today is Arendt’s recognition that comprehending totalitarianism’s possible recurrence means neither denying the burden events have placed on us, nor submitting quietly to the order of the day.
By Alex Emmons for The Intercept. Snowden explained that the NSA’s surveillance dragnet currently allows any analyst with an appropriate clearance to search a massive database of communications for phones or IP addresses related to anyone, including the president. He was describing the Upstream program conducted under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, in which the NSA collects a vast number of American communications from internet cables entering and exiting the United States, ostensibly only “targeting” foreigners. “If Donald Trump wants to take this seriously, he needs to fix the problem that everyone in America’s communications are being collected right now, without a warrant, and they’re going into the bucket, and they’re protected by very lax internal policy regulations, and this simply is not enough,” said Snowden.
By Beyond Extreme Energy. Over 130 organizations across the country announced today that they will oppose nominees made by the Trump Administration to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The move reflects the growing resistance nationwide from residents, farmers, business owners, physicians, and environmentalists to FERC’s practice of recklessly permitting pipelines that put hundreds of communities and the drinking water of millions of Americans at risk, in addition to the global climate. At a time when citizens are increasingly calling on Senators to oppose appointed officials that support the fossil fuel industry, the pledge signers, representing over a million people nationwide, pledge to work against each nominee to FERC made by the Trump Administration, and to call on U.S. Senators to use the nomination process to highlight FERC’s rubber stamping of pipeline projects and refusal to listen the legitimate concerns of community groups.
By John Zangas For DC Media Group – A pro-Trump rally at the Washington Monument drawing nearly 400 supporters was trolled and heckled by anti-fascist counter-protesters on March 4. Even though as many as 25 U.S. Park Police officers kept opposing sides apart, there were still several skirmishes at the rally, during a march and at the White House. There were no arrests or injuries reported, though one woman was pushed to the pavement. The DC Trump rally and march were part of a nationwide call to drum up support for the administration which has come under increasing fire over allegations its campaign staff contacted Russian government officials before the election.
By Mike Whitney for CounterPunch. The Flynn fiasco is not about national security advisor Michael Flynn’s conversations with the Russian ambassador. It’s much deeper than that. It’s about Russia. It’s about Putin. It’s about the explosive rise of China and the world’s biggest free trade zone that will eventually stretch from Lisbon to Vladivostok. It’s about the one country in the world that is obstructing Washington’s plan for global domination. (Russia) And, it’s about the future; which country will be the key player in the world’s most prosperous and populous region, Asia. That’s what’s at stake, and that’s what the Flynn controversy is really all about. Many readers are familiar with the expression “pivot to Asia”, but do they know what it means?
By Alex Christoforou for The Duran. The Obama Administration, with the help of the CIA and main stream media, cleverly diluted the fact they they violently overthrew the democratically elected government in Ukraine, and encouraged the illegal, putsch government to attack its own citizens in the east of the country. Oliver Stone was never fooled by Obama’s Ukraine game, which resulted in the former POTUS getting outplayed in Crimea by Russian President Vladimir Putin. Oliver Stone is now urging US President Donald Trump to make public any secret documents he has in his possession on the origins of Obama’s conflict in Ukraine.
By Mark Hand for DC Media Group. Hundreds of people showed up at the White House on Feb. 11 to denounce the Trump administration’s series of raids in recent days that targeted undocumented immigrants across the country, including in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York. Among the hundreds of people arrested in the raids were many with no criminal records. As part of President Donald Trump’s shock-and-awe policy strategy during his first three weeks in office, the raids by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) are creating uncertainty and fear in immigrant communities. Through traffic checkpoints and raids on people’s homes and workplaces, ICE agents, in collaboration with local police forces in some cases, have detained hundreds of people, including 200 immigrants in Georgia, 160 in Los Angeles and 44 in Austin, Texas.
By Mark Hand for DC Media Group. Tens of thousands of protesters converged on the White House on Jan. 29 to denounce President Donald Trump’s executive order restricting residents from seven Muslim-dominant countries from entering the U.S. Thousands marched from the White House to the Capitol to protest Trump’s order restricting entry from Muslim-majority countries./Photo by Ted Majdosz Thousands marched from the White House to the Capitol to protest Trump’s order restricting entry from Muslim-majority countries./Photo by Ted Majdosz The huge rally occurred one day after spontaneous rallies broke out at U.S. airports as U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents began enforcing Trump’s directive. Protests at U.S. airports carried over to Sunday, including rallies at Dulles and Baltimore-Washington International Airports. Trump’s order bars admission of Syrian refugees and suspends travel to the United States by nationals from Iraq, Iran, Sudan and four other countries, even if the residents hold valid visas or permanent residence permits. People subject to the ban include dual nationals born in one of the seven countries who also hold passports from countries not on the list.
By Peter Cole for In These Times. On the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration, many Americans wrung their hands. Some took to social media to express their discontent while others protested. But, perhaps, the most dramatic and important action was taken by dockworkers in Oakland, California: They stopped working. Their strike demonstrated the potential power ordinary people have on the job, when organized. Longshore workers, who load and unload cargo ships, chose not to report to their hiring hall. As a result, “Oakland International Container Terminal, the largest container facility at the Northern California port, was shut down Friday,” according to the Journal of Commerce. It also reported that all other Oakland container terminals were essentially shut down, too.
By Margaret Flowers for Health Over Profit. Few people outside of single payer activist circles are aware that Senator Sanders introduced an amendment on the Senate floor in December 2009 that would have replaced the Affordable Care Act (ACA) with a single payer health system. It was the first time in the history of the United States that single payer legislation was brought to the floor for a vote. Sadly, it was a Republican doctor who killed the amendment. This happened during the height of the health reform process in the Senate; the House had already passed its version of the legislation. It was the result of a year of pressure to include a single payer health system, National Improved Medicare for All (NIMA), in the health reform debate, grassroots pressure that included nonviolent direct action.
By Popular Resistance. On January 23, 2017, President Trump kept his campaign promise to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). This action was taken because of the work of activists across the U. S. who care about a variety of issues that would be impacted by the TPP. It was the people working together in broad coalitions that made the TPP so politically toxic that politicians ran away from it. People have the power to bring transformational change. It is time to end the failed model of trade and demand a new era of globalization that strengthens protections of workers, families, communities and the planet rather than protecting corporate profits.
By Sally Adee for New Scientist. WELCOME to the new normal. Even before Donald Trump was elected, the US was already in a “golden age of surveillance“. As Edward Snowden revealed in 2013, the US government’s surveillance powers had expanded dramatically under the Obama administration. Trump has repeatedly signalled that he intends to make much greater use of these capabilities – perhaps inspired by British legislation that has given the UK government unprecedented power to snoop on its citizens. In both cases, such powers were ostensibly introduced to combat terrorism. But there’s very little evidence that greater spying powers actually catch terrorists, many of whom already know how to evade spooks. On the other hand, there is mounting concern among privacy advocates and human rights campaigners that such powers will stifle domestic dissent and enable political witch-hunts.
By Reuters. WASHINGTON DC: The new US administration of President Donald Trump said on Friday (Jan 20) its trade strategy to protect American jobs would start with withdrawal from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact. A White House statement issued soon after Trump’s inauguration said the United States would also “crack down on those nations that violate trade agreements and harm American workers in the process.” The statement said Trump was committed to renegotiating another trade deal, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which was signed in 1994 by the United States, Canada and Mexico. “For too long, Americans have been forced to accept trade deals that put the interests of insiders and the Washington elite over the hard-working men and women of this country,” it said.