by Prabhat Patnaik
There is much self-congratulatory back-slapping among governments, the World Bank officials and many economists about the “decline in poverty” that is supposed to have occurred between 1990 and the onset of the recent pandemic. This decline is claimed on the basis of an International Poverty Line (IPL) of $ 1.90 a day (at 2011 Purchasing Power Parity) worked out by the Bank, which basically defines poverty across the world as lack of access over one day to the bundle of goods that $1.90 would have bought in the U.S. in 2011.
How ridiculously low this figure is can be gauged from two facts. In 2011 in the U.S. $1.90 would have just sufficed to buy a cup of coffee and nothing more. In India the equivalent of $1.90 in 2011, while Rs. 95 at the nominal exchange rate, would have been only Rs.29 at the PPP exchange rate, which would have barely purchased two bottles of drinking water.Read More »
by Andre Vltchek
Americans are angry. I suspected they would be, but I got confirmation that they are, all over the place: in Miami, Washington D.C., Baltimore, Minneapolis, New York, and Boston. Basically, everywhere I went, while “taking pulse and temperature” of this country where I used to live, cumulatively, for more than a decade, I felt frustration and bewilderment.
“What is your job?” Shouted an African-American lady, right in the middle of the Union Station in the nation’s capital. Obviously, it was a rhetorical question, as she almost immediately answered her own query: “There are no jobs!”Read More »
Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement takes a look at New Zealand’s richest capitalist
Redline | July 15, 2020
The rich become that way because they work hard to provide the everyday things that our nation needs. So runs the story that underpins the economic system we live under. It’s something that is so taken for granted, it often goes uncommented upon. It seems as natural and obvious as sun in summer or chocolate fish tasting like chocolate rather than fish. Other times you will see the corporate media actively propagating this idea somewhere in the business section of your paper. By the way, that’s the bit you often skip over to get to the crossword at the back, in case you weren’t sure what that was. Overall, it feels like there’s not much to be said about it, right? Wrong.
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by Stansfield Smith
Common Dreams, a liberal-left website, reposted an article by David Smilde of the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA): “Joe Biden Should Not Try to Out-Hawk Trump on Venezuela.” It starts off well with the subtitle: “The first task for a Biden administration would be to take military intervention off the table.” The US has no business invading Venezuela. But Smilde’s approach is that the military option is ill-advised because there are more efficient ways of removing the Maduro government.
Smilde criticizes the US unilateral sanctions as “doing more harm than good,” something of an understatement, and later says “sanctions pinch the Maduro government, they bludgeon the Venezuelan people.” This rings of hypocrisy, as WOLA has strongly defended these sanctions. In fact, Common Dreams has twice published open letters (here and here) criticizing Smilde and WOLA for not opposing Washington’s regime change effort in Venezuela.Read More »
by Francisco Dominguez
On July 2nd 2020 British Judge Nigel Teare, with regard to a Central Bank of Venezuela litigation for 31 tons of gold entrusted to the Bank of England to be returned to the Venezuelan state, issued a verdict in favour of ‘interim president” Juan Guaidó.
The real Venezuelan government has proposed that the gold was given to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to be administered so it was used to purchase food, medicine and vital health inputs. Such a guarantee has not been demanded of Mr Guaidó.Read More »
On July 8, Wednesday, the research community in France under the leadership of Faculties and Labs in Struggle protested against the controversial LPPR (Pluriannual Research Programming Law) bill and the ‘Welcome to France’ program introduced by the government with the aim to privatize and commercialize higher education and research institutes in France. Protests took place in Paris, Lyon, Nice, and Montpellier.Read More »