By Ellen Brown
The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government. — Article IV, Section 4, US Constitution
April 23, 2015 "Information Clearing House" - A republican form of government is one in which power resides in elected officials representing the citizens, and government leaders exercise power according to the rule of law. InThe Federalist Papers, James Madison defined a republic as “a government which derives all its powers directly or indirectly from the great body of the people...”
On April 22, 2015, the Senate Finance Committee approved a bill to fast-track the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive trade agreement that would override our republican form of government and hand judicial and legislative authority to a foreign three-person panel of corporate lawyers.
The secretive TPP is an agreement with Mexico, Canada, Japan, Singapore and seven other countries that affects 40% of global markets. Fast-track authority could now go to the full Senate for a vote as early as next week. Fast-track means Congress will be prohibited from amending the trade deal, which will be put to a simple up or down majority vote. Negotiating the TPP in secret and fast-tracking it through Congress is considered necessary to secure its passage, since if the public had time to review its onerous provisions, opposition would mount and defeat it.
Abdicating the Judicial Function to Corporate Lawyers
James Madison wrote in The Federalist Papers:
The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, . . . may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny. . . . “Were the power of judging joined with the legislative, the life and liberty of the subject would be exposed to arbitrary control, for the judge would then be the legislator. . . .”
And that, from what we now know of the TPP’s secret provisions, will be its dire effect.
The most controversial provision of the TPP is the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) section, which strengthens existing ISDS procedures. ISDS first appeared in a bilateral trade agreement in 1959. According to The Economist, ISDS gives foreign firms a special right to apply to a secretive tribunal of highly paid corporate lawyers for compensation whenever the government passes a law to do things that hurt corporate profits — such things as discouraging smoking, protecting the environment or preventing a nuclear catastrophe.
Arbitrators are paid $600-700 an hour, giving them little incentive to dismiss cases; and the secretive nature of the arbitration process and the lack of any requirement to consider precedent gives wide scope for creative judgments.
To date, the highest ISDS award has been for $2.3 billion to Occidental Oil Company against the government of Ecuador over its termination of an oil-concession contract, this although the termination was apparently legal. Still in arbitration is a demand by Vattenfall, a Swedish utility that operates two nuclear plants in Germany, for compensation of €3.7 billion ($4.7 billion) under the ISDS clause of a treaty on energy investments, after the German government decided to shut down its nuclear power industry following the Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011.
Under the TPP, however, even larger judgments can be anticipated, since the sort of “investment” it protects includes not just “the commitment of capital or other resources” but “the expectation of gain or profit.” That means the rights of corporations in other countries extend not just to their factories and other “capital” but to the profits they expect to receive there.
In an article posted by Yves Smith, Joe Firestone poses some interesting hypotheticals:
Under the TPP, could the US government be sued and be held liable if it decided to stop issuing Treasury debt and financed deficit spending in some other way (perhaps by quantitative easing or by issuing trillion dollar coins)? Why not, since some private companies would lose profits as a result?
Under the TPP or the TTIP (the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership under negotiation with the European Union), would the Federal Reserve be sued if it failed to bail out banks that were too big to fail?
Firestone notes that under the Netherlands-Czech trade agreement, the Czech Republic was sued in an investor-state dispute for failing to bail out an insolvent bank in which the complainant had an interest. The investor company was awarded $236 million in the dispute settlement. What might the damages be, asks Firestone, if the Fed decided to let the Bank of America fail, and a Saudi-based investment company decided to sue?
Abdicating the Legislative Function to Multinational Corporations
Just the threat of this sort of massive damage award could be enough to block prospective legislation. But the TPP goes further and takes on the legislative function directly, by forbidding specific forms of regulation.
Public Citizen observes that the TPP would provide big banks with a backdoor means of watering down efforts to re-regulate Wall Street, after deregulation triggered the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression:
The TPP would forbid countries from banning particularly risky financial products, such as the toxic derivatives that led to the $183 billion government bailout of AIG. It would prohibit policies to prevent banks from becoming “too big to fail,” and threaten the use of “firewalls” to prevent banks that keep our savings accounts from taking hedge-fund-style bets.
The TPP would also restrict capital controls, an essential policy tool to counter destabilizing flows of speculative money. . . . And the deal would prohibit taxes on Wall Street speculation, such as the proposed Robin Hood Tax that would generate billions of dollars’ worth of revenue for social, health, or environmental causes.
Clauses on dispute settlement in earlier free trade agreements have been invoked to challenge efforts to regulate big business. The fossil fuel industry is seeking to overturn Quebec’s ban on the ecologically destructive practice of fracking. Veolia, the French behemoth known for building a tram network to serve Israeli settlements in occupied East Jerusalem, is contesting increases in Egypt’s minimum wage. The tobacco maker Philip Morris is suing against anti-smoking initiatives in Uruguay and Australia.
The TPP would empower not just foreign manufacturers but foreign financial firms to attack financial policies in foreign tribunals, demanding taxpayer compensation for regulations that they claim frustrate their expectations and inhibit their profits.
Preempting Government Sovereignty
What is the justification for this encroachment on the sovereign rights of government? Allegedly, ISDS is necessary in order to increase foreign investment. But as noted in The Economist, investors can protect themselves by purchasing political-risk insurance. Moreover, Brazil continues to receive sizable foreign investment despite its long-standing refusal to sign any treaty with an ISDS mechanism. Other countries are beginning to follow Brazil’s lead.
In an April 22nd report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research, gains from multilateral trade liberalization were shown to be very small, equal to only about 0.014% of consumption, or about $.43 per person per month. And that assumes that any benefits are distributed uniformly across the economic spectrum. In fact, transnational corporations get the bulk of the benefits, at the expense of most of the world’s population.
Something else besides attracting investment money and encouraging foreign trade seems to be going on. The TPP would destroy our republican form of government under the rule of law, by elevating the rights of investors – also called the rights of “capital” – above the rights of the citizens.
That means that TPP is blatantly unconstitutional. But as Joe Firestone observes, neo-liberalism and corporate contributions seem to have blinded the deal’s proponents so much that they cannot see they are selling out the sovereignty of the United States to foreign and multinational corporations.
For more information and to get involved, visit:
- Ellen Brown is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books including the best-selling Web of Debt. Her latest book, The Public Bank Solution, explores successful public banking models historically and globally. Her 300+ blog articles are at EllenBrown.com.
Our political system is broken. From every direction, there are calls for reform. So the question must be asked: How is it possible to affect wholesale change of the federal government? How can the people have enough power to drive out the old guard?
The truth is that most Democratic and Republican constituents alike have a common foe - the corruption that has overtaken our government. The needs of the people have been cast aside in favor of corporate interests.
There is a way that we can take our government back, and that is through a large, unified grass roots movement to vote out a majority of the corrupt politicians who sell us out.
This suggests that we MUST, by definition, unify in our common interest, behind a common platform.
Our Huge Majority
Our goals can only be met through coming together in support of a common agenda that serves the masses. As a minimum, we can unify the tens of millions who see the flagrant corruption, the devastation of our sustainability, and all those who live the gross inequalities and feel the squeeze of the corporate muscle wrestling their last dollar from them.
There are tens of thousands of environmental, social, and political organizations that also share a common adversary - the corruption in our government that sells all of us out. If these thousands of organizations can come together in support of this essential endeavor rather than fighting their own David and Goliath battles against such corruption and power, all else that is important will follow once this one bad seed is eliminated. Through the backing of these thousands of organizations, along with their millions of respective supporters, we can have the unified strength to succeed.
We need a vehicle to unify us to create a voting block powerful enough to vote out most of the incumbents in Congress. We also need to vote in a president of our own choosing; someone who has a solid track record of being beyond reproach, and can be trusted. (Obviously, there are important lessons to be learned from the Obama experience. We must resist the temptation of voting in another star who comes out of nowhere politically as Obama did. We will call on those who have a long-time track record of working for a better tomorrow to step forward and serve our country.)
How We Can Organize
Our goals can be achieved through calling on a few trusted organizations, such as Amnesty International, American Civil Liberties Union, Earth First, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, and The Union of Concerned Scientists to join their resources and personnel to form the initial organizers of the VOTER party. It is essential that the organizations chosen have no corporate sponsorship/influence from any known polluters.
VOTER stands for Voice Of Thoughtful and Ethical Reform. The VOTER party will support initiatives and candidates who will work together for a very narrow agenda focused on ending the corruption in D.C. and how to bring the greatest benefit to the masses and putting corporate power in check.
The VOTER Party Platform
The platform presented here is offered an an example of what could be accomplished.
As discussed further below, the actual platform would be created by VOTER Party members taking online surveys and voting on the VOTER Party website.
1) Substantially increase taxes on individuals who make more than $1 million per year and corporations making more than $10 million per year and substantially reduce taxes on everyone else to bring real tax relief to those who need it most. Raise the minimum wage to a living wage. Eliminate the offshore tax loopholes for corporations and other loopholes for the wealthy. Create a new minimum trading tax that applies to all stocks, bonds, derivities, etc. Outlaw electronic trades.
2) Limit all loans, including payday loans, home mortgages, auto loans, credit cards, etc, to 9% or lower interest so people stand a chance for a better tomorrow rather than living out their days enslaved by the bankers.
Demand that the companies who sold the subprime mortgages refinance those who are now under water so their total debt does not exceed the current value of their house plus, perhaps, 25% higher to account for the economy coming back. Cap the interest on mortgages at 6% and put a freeze on foreclosures until the rules can be made fair for homeowners.
3) Make all elections - federal, state, and local - funded by the new higher taxes on the rich and on wealthy corporations so all candidates will have the same air time, with no one being allowed to outspend anyone else. The average American must be on an equal footing with the wealthy so our government is not overtaken by the wealthy. The first amendment gives everyone an equal voice - not the wealthy having total exposure while the common man and woman has none. It should be evident by now that it is in the interest of the 99 percent to put one of their own in office.
4) Corporations are not people. Eliminate "corporate personhood". This would be accomplished by new laws that would, in effect, reverse the Supreme Court decision of January 2010, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, so domestic and foreign corporations no longer have undue influence on our elections.
5) Eliminate the ability for derivatives to be used to make bets on commodities, driving up food and fuel prices. Only small and medium size farms should be able to use a derivative-type vehicle to hedge against adverse weather conditions and natural disasters that can threaten their crops.
6) Inform corporations that provide essential goods and services, (such as water, electricity, home heating oil, food, health, and auto fuel,) that they cannot charge such high prices that they are making billions of dollars in profit while people are freezing in the winter, and becoming homeless. If it is unconscionable, then it should have reasonable limits. It’s simple - when huge numbers of people are starving, then the corporations and government are taking too much. Businesses that sell non-essentials and luxury items can charge what they choose.
7) Eliminate as much corporate and elite influence on our government as possible. Corporate needs should be considered when drafting legislation - just not with undue influence. All meetings with lobbyists or the wealthy will be shown on CSPAN and on a public record. No more partying and gifting the Senators or secret meetings. No more vacations paid for by special interests. No more quitting Congress to become a wealthy lobbyist, and no more Congressional leaders being able to play the stock market for personal gain while being excluded from insider trading laws AND while legislating in a way that benefits their own companies or those they are invested in. These practices cause deep and wide corruption, and must end.
Industry can have their scientists and lawyers meet with Congress to express their needs and concerns when relevant legislation is to be drafted. But their voice, their access, will be equal to or less than that of the citizenry, as it should be.
8) Time has proven that allowing for-profit corporations to run nuclear power plants does not work. They find ways to cut corners thereby risking the future for thousands of people while creating a ten thousand year contamination of lands. They should once again be state-owned with oversight from the NRC. The NRC must be cleaned up, too. No more revolving door with people from the industry that they supposedly oversee. Having the fox guard the henhouse must end. The same principle would apply to the FDA, the EPA, and other federal agencies.
9) Protect small family farms, the organic standard, and health supplements to protect American’s rights to decent and healthy foods and health freedom of choice. Demand both labeling and reasonable testing on Genetically Engineered plants and animals. Suspend sales and contamination of the ecosystem by suspending sales of such products until valid test data can be vouched safe. Outlaw Codex Alimentarius and the fake Food Safety Modernization Act before they cause any more harm to small and organic family farms. Pass new laws protecting American's rights to choose vaccinations and/or Allopathic medicine versus holistic options.
10) Subsidize clean energy technologies, such as wind and solar, instead of the coal, nuclear, oil and gas industries. Outlaw fracking before it causes any more damage and harm.
11) Hands off Social Security and Medicare. Rather, boost the amounts paid out to an amount in keeping with real cost of living increases and inflation so people can afford to live in their homes and not end up on the street homeless.
12) Extend Medicare to all. It is a program that works, and is very cost effective. Provide a public option that people or companies can choose if they want to. Tell the truth about the dangers of Genetically Modified foods, microwave ovens, cell phones, MSG, and other dangerous chemicals in our diets. Tell the truth about healing cancer. It’s right here: www.CancerTutor.com Tell people the truth about how to stay healthy. Outlaw artifitial sweeteners, MSG, and other artifitial ingredients that have already been proven to be carcinogenic. These are the obvious answer to our health care crisis.
13) Eliminate the Patriot Act and the gross levels of invasiveness. Destroy the existing databases of information collected on average Americans. Stop the militarization of the United States. Hold police or those who gave the orders responsible for flagrant brutality.
14) Time has shown that where people are given peace and the ability to feed their families and have a decent roof over their heads, there is no "terrorism". We create enemies by attacking foreign countries and by leaving them devastated and/or war-torn. Bring the troops home. Stop the waging of aggressive wars. Become a friend to foreign nations so there is no reason to use weapons of mass destruction. Stop U.S. weapons manufacturers from selling Depleted Uranium weapons and munitions, and WMD's to other countries.
We should seek earnestly to promote international peace. Host international summits on the dangers to our environment, food supply, health… Essentially, it comes down to how we are threatening our own sustainability. We should press for international standards on environmental care so we do not destroy the world of our children and our children's children. We must be stewards of the world because it is the only one we have, and we each have the debt to our descendants to be good stewards.
15) Take care of our troops. Give them the benefits they deserve to live a decent life. Provide proper health care and vocational training programs, psychological counseling where needed, and other assistance, as appropriate.
16) NAFTA, GATT, and all agreements with the World Trade Organization (WTO) result in a race to the bottom - to sweatshop conditions globally. They were international treaties and therefore, had to be voted for by two-thirds of Congress. But they were fast-tracked and signed into law only by the president. Hence, they are illegal and should be nullified. Tariffs worked to protect American workers for many years and can work again.
17) The constitution states that Congress and Congress alone has the ability to print our currency. There should be no interest associated with our money, except a reasonable rate when borrowing from a bank, for instance. The Federal Reserve is a privately held bank our country is paying trillions of dollars of interest to. It should be nationalized, and the debt found to be "odious", as used by the United States several times to avoid paying the debt of a country it had invaded. See article directly to the right on this topic.
Without the false debt to the elite bankers, our several trillion dollar debt gone, suddenly there is more money for everything important, such as helping the homeless; major tax relief for everyone who makes less than a million dollars in income each year; new jobs while building on green technologies to be the leader in those fields in the future; substantially more money for schools, the elderly, Social Security, etc..
End the fractional banking system.
19) Electronic voting machines that lack a solid audit trail are too easy to manipulate. They can only result in our elections continuing to be stolen. Having a paper audit trail is an obvious first step on the road back to democracy. (See www.OpenVoting.org for more on this crucial issue.)
VOTER Party Organization
The politics in D.C. are now totally controlled by special interests. The Supreme Court has ruled that corporations can donate as much as they want to political candidates. Our democracy is gone unless we take it back now, while there is still a chance.
There has been too much heartlessness. It is time to fix the mess that the corrupt politicians have created.
This is simply a starting point. If not this, then what? We must discuss how to achieve our ends. We must unify or we will continue to be powerless. Here is a platform that serves the 99 percent instead of the one percent. We have the power of the vote. If we unify, then anything is possible.
If you read ideas like these and take no steps toward viable solutions, then nothing will change. We can always rationalize why something will not or cannot work. We must come together in support of the people's platform of reforms. We must each do our part in spreading the word and sharing ideas and coming together to stand up for a better tomorrow or there may be no tomorrow.
And this is also why I will suggest a few of the most ethical and proven environmental, social-issue and political-reform organizations come together to form the new VOTER Party structure in support of the VOTER party. These organizations would have the resources to each donate staff, office space and equipment. If they join us in this endeavor instead of fighting their own battles, then everyone’s needs are met by a unified and focused effort to address the corruption in our government.
One Way to Form a VOTER Party Organization
A VOTER organization could give us a unified voice and provide a platform that we can vote on. VOTER can put surveys on the internet to let us vote on issues that we care about. VOTER will ask the questions that no one else is asking. “Do we want all special interest money out of politics?” “Do we want federally-funded elections?” “Should we fund these elections through a new tax on wealthy corporations?” “Should we have a national voting box standard that always has a paper audit trail?”
VOTER can also do the work for us of sorting through thousands of pages of history to find Congressional candidates who have a proven track record of reform for a better government, or a cleaner environment, or improved food safety; people who have been working on social issues to help the masses; anyone who can prove that they’ve been fighting the good fight for a while - these are the people that we should be voting for.
People would be able to vote on a VOTER website for potential candidates who we want to run in the actual general election.
Many will ask how we can limit the vote to just those who are in agreement with the real and effective reforms that will benefit the masses. The simple answer is that those who have donated money to one of the member organizations in the past 20 years are the automatic members who can vote. Through donating money to social justice causes or environmental issues or to any of the other member organizations, a person has earned the right to vote on the VOTER website.
Obviously this is only for voting to form the VOTER party platform and voting on the candidates. After the candidates and platform are set, then it moves into the public arena where anyone that is registered to vote can vote for the VOTER candidates, or the Democrat or Republican candidates.
Remember, VOTER would be composed of people who are donated from organizations with a long-time track record of fighting the good fight. With our support, they would have the resources to help us take our government back. It is in everyone’s interest - except the entrenched powers that be, of course, to support these organizations. This is every man and woman’s fight for our very government and for a better tomorrow. This is an achievable path to a better tomorrow for us all, except perhaps, those who have been stealing too much of the pie.
VOTER can enable those of us who have donated to one of the member organizations to have our own primaries where the third party candidates are not excluded, but invited. VOTER will let us vote among several candidates seeking a specific seat. And these candidates cannot advertise on mainstream media. VOTER’s members will need to read up on them and/or see them speak in equal-length video presentations that will be hosted by VOTER. The VOTER organization can also host debates. Thus, money will not be able to buy these elections. VOTER party potential candidates will have to provide a financial disclosure of net worth and any corporate affiliations of any kind.
VOTER candidates will be asked to answer survey questions that will help people know where each candidate stands on pertinent issues. Attention will be drawn to politically expedient answers or answers that are vague or lacking in specific details. Candidates will be asked if they are willing to commit to the VOTER platform of reforms.
To be successful in this endeavor, we must vote out most of the incumbents in Washington because they have demonstrated their allegiance to everyone but the people who they are supposed to be serving.
This is just a starting point. Left to its own devices, the corruption in our government has become a cancer. We must stop the madness before it destroys all that we hold dear. If we wish to put our government back in the hands of the people, then the time has come for all who are ethically-minded and concerned to get involved and to stay involved. It is time to clean house. We are 300 million and the power brokers are few in number. If we come together, it can be done. If not, I fear for our future.
The People are Too Big to Fail!
Join the Peaceful Revolution:
Cole Simonson is one of the 99 percent with an idea that can be developed further. He can be reached at Cole@TheVoterParty.com
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WASHINGTON — An ambitious 12-nation trade accord pushed by President Obama would allow foreign corporations to sue the United States government for actions that undermine their investment "expectations" and hurt their business, according to a classified document. The Trans-Pacific Partnership — a cornerstone of Mr. Obama's remaining economic agenda — would grant broad powers to multinational companies operating in North America, South America and Asia. Under the accord, still under negotiation but nearing completion, companies and investors would be empowered to challenge regulations, rules, government actions and court rulings — federal, state or local — before tribunals organized under the World Bank or the United Nations.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a disastrous trade agreement designed to protect the interests of the largest multi-national corporations at the expense of workers, consumers, the environment and the foundations of American democracy. It will also negatively impact some of the poorest people in the world.
The TPP is a treaty that has been written behind closed doors by the corporate world. Incredibly, while Wall Street, the pharmaceutical industry and major media companies have full knowledge as to what is in this treaty, the American people and members of Congress do not. They have been locked out of the process.
Further, all Americans, regardless of political ideology, should be opposed to the “fast track” process which would deny Congress the right to amend the treaty and represent their constituents’ interests.
...These treaties have forced American workers to compete against desperate and low-wage labor around the world. The result has been massive job losses in the United States and the shutting down of tens of thousands of factories. These corporately backed trade agreements have significantly contributed to the race to the bottom, the collapse of the American middle class and increased wealth and income inequality. The TPP is more of the same, but even worse.
In recent decades, the U.S. propaganda system has grown more and more sophisticated in the art of “perception management,” now enlisting not only government PR specialists but career journalists and aspiring bloggers to push deceptions on the public.
By Stephen C. Webster
As the text explains, the software would require licenses for 50 users with 10 personas each, for a total of 500. These personas would have to be "replete with background , history, supporting details, and cyber presences that are technically, culturally and geographically consistent."
It continues, noting the need for secure virtual private networks that randomize the operator's Internet protocol (IP) address, making it impossible to detect that it's a single person orchestrating all these posts. Another entry calls for static IP address management for each persona, making it appear as though each fake person was consistently accessing from the same computer each time.
By James Clay Fuller
May 22, 2011 "Information Clearing House" ---Count me among the growing number of people who believe support of the Democratic Party, as such, is not merely a waste of time but, worse, a deeply negative activity.
Support for the Democratic Party leads to continued degradation of the United States and great harm to all citizens who are not wealthy.
The same has to be said about support for the Republican Party, but that does not mean rational people must therefore throw in with the Democrats. In plain language, they’re about equally bad for America and its people.
We desperately need a new party, and there is a logical place to begin forming one: With the long list of genuine liberal organizations that were given birth by the Internet. More of that shortly.
Barack Obama should not be re-elected. At any time before the mid 1990s, his actions in office would have identified him clearly as a Republican who leans dangerously to the right. What he claims to believe in while campaigning and what he has done while in office have almost no positive connection. He has capitulated on major issues before any “negotiations” have begun; he has, whenever possible, given the money elite what it wants on everything of importance...
17) The constitution states that Congress and Congress alone has the ability to print our currency. There should be no interest associated with our money, except a reasonable rate when borrowing from a bank, for instance. The Federal Reserve is a privately held bank our country is paying trillions of dollars of interest to. It should be nationalized. etc..
To clarify how it is reasonable to terminate the debt with the bankers of the Federal Reserve, for instance, I refer to the following extract from this video:
As this video discusses Greece, try substituting the United States, and perhaps you will feel, as I do, that it is completely accurate, and an important message for us all:
From Debtocracy by Kryfos Okosmo:
This film describes how the United States used the idea of an odious debt in 1898 at the close of the Spanish American war and annexed Cuba along with its debt. The United States decided that Cuba's debt was odious and did not pay it. In the late 19, early 20th century, most instances of odious debt concerned underdeveloped countries on the American continent. The United States was involved in all of those.
And the same concept of odious debt was used again with Iraq's debt when the United States was about to attack Iraq, it was formulated that the United States would claim Iraq's debt as odious. Then they realized that the same concept could be used by other countries against the interests of the United States, so they decided they must stop using that method. Here are quotes from the latter half of the film:
An odious debt has three points:
...Only the people have the authority and the right to request an audit [of supposed debt.] Because they suffer the consequences, all Greeks must become involved. All social organizations must protest and demand an audit. The Greek political parties ND and PASOK, who benefited from the creation of debt are very negative towards an audit, as their responsibility will be revealed.
People, organizations, unions, judges, intellectuals, artists – everybody must act. They must express their views and exert pressure on political authority. ...Academics, writers, artists, union representatives from all over the world supported this initiative willingly. The Audit Committee will find which parts of the debt are odious or illegitimate and will prove that, as provided by Greek and International Law, the Greek are not obliged to pay such debt.
However, the decision is basically political, not financial. Even if the debt was legitimate, no government has the right to kill its people in order to satisfy its lenders. Even if the entire Greek national debt of 350 billion proves legitimate, which is clearly not going to be the case, Greece can never pay back. It will have to be cancelled. If honoring the debt and making it sustainable involves dismantling health care, dismantling education, dismantling the transport system, then the debt is socially unsustainable.
...There is only one single option in the coming case, which is not to pay this debt because it was based on neoliberalism. And neoliberalism endeavor was a crime against humanity.
No one is obliged to pay this debt since it was accrued because of corruption in the financial markets. It’s immoral to pay an immoral debt.
The formation of an Audit Committee is ultimately just a valuable weapon in a broader battle. This battle will follow the traditional rules by which battles have been fought for centuries. Without this battle, even if we repudiate the debt repeatedly, it will always rise from its ashes
This means that a field for ideological, political and class struggle will form. The debt is a result of class struggle.
Don’t hesitate to stand up for your rights against the Greek government. Respect is gained through struggle, not by obeying one’s creditors. Only when the people take action can the situation really change.
We have to shake off submissiveness, liberate ourselves from the IMF, liberate ourselves from the ECB, and liberate ourselves from the EU because all three mean the economic slavery of Greece.
Now is the crucial moment.
Some stood up once, and sat down
Some walked a mile, and walked away
Some stood up twice, then sat down, "I've had it" they said,
Some walked two miles,
then walked away
"It's too much," they cried.
Some stood and stood and stood
They were taken for fools
They were taken for being taken in
Some walked and walked and walked
They walked the earth,
They walked the waters,
They walked the air
"Why do you stand," they were asked,
"and why do you walk?"
"Because of the children," they said,
"And because of the heart,
"And because of the bread,"
"Because the cause is the heart's beat,
And the children born
And the risen bread"
Transcribed from a talk by Howard Zinn, which Zinn concluded with this poem and this introduction to it: "Daniel Berrigan..wrote this poem And the Risen Bread, after a friend of his, Mitchel Snyder, who worked for the homeless in Washington, for years and years, Michel Snyder, became despondent, as anybody might become despondent, working for the homeless, and seeing the callousness of the government in relation to people without homes, and he became despondent and took his life, you see, and Dan Berrigan wrote this poem in memory, in loving memory, of Mitchel Snyder."