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Anarchists Target Chapel Hill Police Headquarters in Solidarity with Luke O’Donovan and Ferguson Rioters

In the early hours of August 14th, three police cruisers were smashed out at the Chapel Hill Police Department Headquarters in Chapel Hill, NC. A message was also painted on one of the cars, reading, "For Luke."

This was done as a small gesture of solidarity with Luke O'Donovan, of Atlanta, GA, who was recently sentenced to two years in prison for defending himself against five homophobic attackers. We hope this brings a smile to his face.

We also carried out this act in solidarity with the rioters and looters of Ferguson, MO, who, in the face of continued brutality by racist police, have inspired the world with their courageous resistance against the forces of state, capital, and white supremacy. May their insurrection spread.

Both as small groups and entire neighborhoods, it is possible to fight back.

- some anarchists

 

Soft Science, Hard Time: The Expanding Sexual Regulatory State As Facilitated By Science-LIght

"When the Nazis came for the communists, I did not speak out; As I was not a communist.
When they locked up the social democrats, I did not speak out; I was not a social democrat.
When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; As I was not a trade unionist.
When they came for the Jews, I did not speak out; As I was not a Jew.
When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out."
- Martin Niemöller, 1892-1984

 

EU Fines Financial Institutions $2.3bn Over Manipulation of LIBOR, One of Largest Banking Scandals of Our Time

The European Union fined eight financial institutions a combined total of $2.3 billion over their alleged role in the manipulation of the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR).  The manipulation of LIBOR is one of the largest banking scandals of our time. According to the Economist, when the rate is manipulated, it affects payments for more than $800 trillion of financial instruments and 99 percent of all commercial products including mortgages, credit cards and pensions, as reported by CNN. Five other financial institutions, including Barclays, R.B.S. and UBS, have paid more than $3 billion combined to regulators in the United States, Britain and Switzerland over the manipulation of the LIBOR rate.   

The Super Rich Reinvent U.S. Capitalism

As U.S. corporate profits soar to record highs, food stamps for the neediest were quietly cut. The politicians who are demanding endless cuts to social programs — Democrats and Republicans alike — insist that the U.S. is broke, all the while conveniently ignoring the mountains of tax-free wealth piling up in the pockets of the super rich.

This newest flood of cash for the nation’s wealthiest 1% is a blatant government subsidy: the Federal Reserve continues to pump out an extra $75 billion a month, the vast majority of which fattens the already bursting overseas bank accounts of the rich. Since Obama has been president this pro-corporate policy has helped funnel 95 percent of the nation’s new income to the wealth-soaked rich.

And while it’s true that the global super rich have an estimated $32 trillion [!] stashed away abroad in off shore tax havens, an even newer way to avoid taxes has gripped the endlessly-greedy minds of U.S.-based billionaires.

The Time Has Come For $15 Minimum Wage

In one of comedian Chris Rock’s routines, he observes: “You know what that means when someone pays you a minimum wage? You know what your boss is trying to say? ‘Hey, if I could pay you less, I would, but it’s against the law.’”

The humor works because, like the boy who cried “the king has no clothes,” Rock is stating something obvious which mostly goes unspoken: that if it wasn’t for such laws as the minimum wage, established to appease the militant mass workers’ struggles in the 1930s, bosses would reduce workers’ wages and benefits to near zero.

This is because workers’ wages come, naturally, at the expense of their bosses’ profits. Since bosses are in business to make as much profit as possible, they are compelled to cheat their workers out of every dime their labor creates, within the limits of the law.

Is Obama Fundamentally Shifting His Middle East Strategy?

The Saudis and Israelis are fuming. Obama’s talks with Iran’s new President Hassan Rouhani point to a possible new direction in U.S.-Middle East policy. Iran is the regional archrival of the Saudis and Israelis, who for decades have shared the mantle as the main U.S. allies in the Middle East. 

The Arab Spring has — along with the ascendance of Russia and China — shifted the geo-political ground of the region, and the U.S. is trying to maintain a dominant position with a new strategy. This shift, if successful, has the potential to create a political crisis within the U.S. government as well as abroad. Israel and Saudi Arabia, for example, won’t quietly accept a diminished role in the Middle East.

Protest Underscores Continuing Privatization of Oregon Schools

The Oregon Business Association (OBA) held its annual Statesman Dinner on October 17 to honor the Statesman of the Year. The event was fraught with anomalies, not least of which was the fact that the award went to Sue Levin, the Executive Director of Stand for Children Oregon. 

According to the OBA website, while Levin is acknowledged as a woman–a stateswoman to be precise–she still had to make due with receiving the Statesman of the Year award. It was nonetheless, from the OBA’s perspective, a proper and well-deserved award. After all, Stand for Children works tirelessly to turn the public education system into a cash cow for private interests, as one would expect from an organization whose major funders include the Walton Family (of Wal-Mart fame) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Movie Review: Dirty Wars

Jeremy Scahill, reporter for such outlets as The Nation and Democracy Now, has come out with the most hard hitting documentary of recent years entitled, “Dirty Wars.” He takes us around the globe from Afghanistan to Yemen and Somalia documenting the crimes of U.S imperialistic foreign policy in tragic detail.

The documentary starts off in Gardez, Afghanistan, where a night raid by strange-looking, long-bearded American troops ends up in the butchery of a family, one of the targets being an American-trained Afghan policeman. To cover up their tracks the secretive American troops extract the bullets from the dead bodies with knives. The villagers refer to the mysterious killers as “the American Taliban.”

The UAW Takes One Step Forward, and One Backward

Trying to rebound off the ropes, where it has been pummeled for the past several decades, The United Auto Workers (UAW) has launched an aggressive organizing campaign in the South, in line with an AFL-CIO resolution emphasizing organizing there, where unionization rates are weak across the board.

As reported in The New York Times, the UAW has taken an international approach where union members in Brazil are picketing Nissan dealerships, a U.S. UAW contingent is traveling to South Africa to embarrass Nissan over its antiunion policies, and a similar campaign is underway in Tokyo and Paris.
Actor Danny Glover, has been persuaded to visit college campuses to recruit students to help in the union drive, and community groups are being organized, which include the NAACP, to help as well.

Fast Food Workers Win a Union…through Zoolidarity

Union members have watched in awe as fast food workers struck over the last year, calling for “$15 and a union.” Despite the slogan, however, the prevailing wisdom has been that union recognition isn’t really the goal; that’s too hard against giant employers insulated by a layer of franchises, with a part-time and transient workforce.

Last month 142 mostly part-time food service workers, public employees at the Oregon Zoo, showed it could be done, winning a landslide election to join Laborers Local 483 in Portland. They join 137 already-union admissions and custodial employees at the zoo—about half of these are temps—doubling the size and power of the bargaining unit just in time for contract negotiations.

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