Author Archive | Good German

Nunavut’s Suicide Crisis

Better Than Television
Laura Eggertson writes at CBC News:

On May 18, 2013, after responding to the suicide of a 13-year-old girl in Pangnirtung, Nunavut’s chief coroner pleaded for help from the territory’s minister of health and senior bureaucrats.

“It is time to declare a state of emergency,” Padma Suramala wrote in an email sent to Health Minister Keith Peterson, Justice Minister Daniel Shewchuk and others. After working for 13 months straight, and dealing with nine suicides in the previous month, and five that month alone, the coroner described herself as devastated and disheartened.

Before she wrote the email, she spent a sleepless night agonizing over what brought a 13-year-old to the decision to die “before even experiencing her life.”

“We have reached a breaking point and our community is under crisis,” Suramala wrote in the email, obtained through an access to information request. “I leave it in your best hands to make the decision of calling [a] state of emergency … and bring awareness of available resources to Nunavummiut.”

Nothing happened.

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Water on Mars? Another Marxist Plot from NASA!

Peter Sinclair writes at Climate Denial Crock of the Week:

The net effect of climate denial, tobacco denial, and science denial in general is to create a population that does not trust science, evidence, or fact, and instead relies on the pronouncements of ideological zealots like Rush Limbaugh and Donald Trump, who serve their own ends, and in general, those of the most wealthy and powerful in society.

The current status of the GOP nomination process shows just how advanced that process is.  For a Republican candidate to opine that the earth is more than 5000 years old is considered edgy and risky with the base.  And of course, climate science, as this quote from right wing radio blowhard Rush Limbaugh shows,  is beyond the pale.

Read more here.

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Earning a Profit from Global Warming


Pete Dolack writes at CounterPunch:

As evidence mounts that a warming world is hurtling toward the point of no return, the plan of the world’s governments is to make adjustments to the ability of corporations to profit from polluting. Short-term profits continue to be elevated above the long-term health of the environment.

There does seem to be a new sense of governmental urgency ahead of the Paris climate summit scheduled for December, with several governments announcing new proposed reductions in future greenhouse-gas emissions. But is it already too late? Two scientific studies issued this year suggest that so much carbon dioxide already has been thrown in the air that humanity may have already committed itself to a six-meter rise in sea level. A separate 2015 study, prepared by 18 scientists, found that the Earth is crossing several “planetary boundaries” that together will render the planet much less hospitable.

The Paris climate summit, officially known as the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, or COP 21, has set itself the goal of “achiev[ing] a new international agreement on the climate, applicable to all countries, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C.” Representatives of the world’s governments will meet with an intention of setting goals for combatting global warming.

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Inside Exxon’s Great Climate Cover-Up

A new report by InsideClimate News reveals how oil giant ExxonMobil’s own research confirmed the role of fossil fuels in global warming decades ago. By 1977, Exxon’s own senior experts had begun to warn the burning of fossil fuels could pose a threat to humanity. At first, Exxon launched an ambitious research program, outfitting a supertanker with instruments to study carbon dioxide in the air and ocean. But toward the end of the 1980s, Exxon changed course and shifted to the forefront of climate change denial. Since the 1990s, it has spent millions of dollars funding efforts to reject the science its own experts knew of decades ago.

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How To Tell If Your Subversive Artwork Is Really That Subversive


Priscilla Frank writes at the Huffington Post:

So you want to make a work of art. And not just any work of art, but a work that truly pops, shocks, offends, and mortifies. You want gasps and expletives and perhaps an outcry about the end of Western civilization.

Well, dear readers, crafting a work of truly subversive art is more than just a matter of slapping some blood on a canvas or running naked through a museum. Let’s walk through it together.

1. Has it been done before?

In the words of subversive spirit guide Marcel Duchamp: “Art is either plagiarism or revolution.” Back in 1917, the artist aligned his work with the latter, by submitting the now illustrious “Fountain” to the Society of Independent Artists. The work, of course, is a porcelain urinal signed “R.Mutt” — thought to be either the pseudonym of Duchamp himself or his Dada contemporary Baroness Elsa — that has been flipped upside down and displayed proudly as a Work of Art.

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Bloody Sunday: the Combined Attack on Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn arrives at the Refugees Welcome Here demo - London 12 Sept 2015
Tariq Ali writes at CounterPunch:

Last Sunday [20 September] a serving General in the British Army publicly threatened mutiny and a possible coup if Jeremy Corbyn were to be elected Prime Minister and attempted to carry through his policies. He was mildly rebuked by the Ministry of Defence.

‪The General is being effectively backed by Hilary Benn, reappointed Shadow Foreign Secretary by Corbyn. Benn junior is threatening to vote for bombing Syria and is strongly opposed to ditching nuclear weapons. He said this on a Sunday morning TV show. (poor Tony who, in the course of a discussion on the Miliband sons,  confessed: ‘I have a similar problem’. He wasn’t referring to his radical daughter Melissa). As if this was not bad enough, on that same day, Sadiq Khan,  Labour’s venal candidate for Mayor of London has accused Corbyn/ McDonnell of inciting anti-semitism and racism. According to the Daily Mail:’ “New Labour Party leaders Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell were last night sensationally accused of risking inciting terrorist and anti-Semitic attacks in London.

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Psy-Ops and Learned Helplessness

From 2007, Peter Chamberlin writing at the Atlantic Free Press:

For many years, American society has lived under a state of siege. We have constantly been bombarded, every minute of every day, with psychological conditioning that is meant to lead us into a state of hopelessness. We are addicted to the source of this Pavlovian conditioning – television. This medium serves as an extension of the government propaganda apparatus, pumping-up the fear and anxiety levels, until the people become numb, convinced that we are helpless in a roiling sea of great dangers. We are literally being scared to death, so that we will give-up, roll over, and play dead. They want our surrender to be assured before they take the final steps to murder our democratic-Republic.

The people don’t understand that they are the source of all power within this Republic. Our task, as we fight those who seek to force nuclear war against Iran upon us, is to remind the people of their power and their freedom to reject another illegal, immoral war, to be fought on behalf of Israel.

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Donald Trump and the Ghosts of Totalitarianism

Donald Trump
Henry Giroux writes at CounterPunch:

In the current historical moment in the United States, the emptying out of language is nourished by the assault on the civic imagination. One example of this can be found in the rise of Donald Trump on the political scene. Donald Trump’s popular appeal speaks to not just the boldness of what he says and the shock it provokes, but the inability to respond to shock with informed judgement rather than titillation. Marie Luise Knott is right in noting that “We live our lives with the help of the concepts we form of the world. They enable an author to make the transition from shock to observation to finally creating space for action—for writing and speaking. Just as laws guarantee a public space for political action, conceptual thought ensures the existence of the four walls within which judgment operates.”[1] The concepts that now guide our understanding of American society are dominated by a corporate induced linguistic and authoritarian model that brings ruin to language, politics and democracy itself.

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8 Questions To Test Your Liberal White Friend’s Commitment To Fighting White Supremacy


Via Atlanta Blackstar:

Our planet has been dominated by a system of global white supremacy for the last 400-plus years. As such, all members of society play a role in its continued existence. One of the most misunderstood roles is that of the white liberal, who is made to appear to be an ally of Black people in the fight against the system of global white supremacy.

However, recent statements about diversity in the film industry by actor Matt Damon to filmmaker Effie Brown on the set of HBO’s Project Greenlight is just the latest example of how white liberals are just as reluctant as their right-wing counterparts to cede power and privilege to non-whites. In our continued effort to dismantle the white supremacy narrative, ABS proposes eight questions for people of African origin to ask white liberals as a test of how committed they are to dismantling white supremacy.

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Freedom or Happiness?

Michael Dickens writes at Philosophical Multicore:

The foundational tenet of morality is to do the most good for the most people. The individual, while important in some sense, is only relevant in terms of the community as a whole. But similar to the question of individual versus collective happiness is the question of happiness versus liberty.

It shall go without saying that the moral thing to do is to try to make the world better — more specifically, to do the most good for the most people. After that, the natural question to ask is, what is “good”? Two very important ideals of goodness (which unfortunately are sometimes in conflict) are freedom and happiness.

What is happiness? Moral philosophers have been asking this question for a while, and John Stuart Mill was one of the first to provide some really good answers. He proposed the concept of higher and lower pleasures.

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