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07.14 A Glacier the Size of Florida Is Becoming Unstable. It Has Dire Implications for Global Sea Levels [The willfully ignorant needn't read more, Trump]

07.13 'Climate Despair' Is Making People Give Up on Life [Willfully ignorant governments—having fired many of their best scientists—have made themselves too stupid to despair]

07.13 Trump administration to approve pesticide that may harm bees [The worst government money can buy!]

07.12 These solar panels don’t just generate power—they produce drinking water

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07.10 Plastic Has A Big Carbon Footprint — But That Isn't The Whole Story [Fixing our world begins by educating your consciousness with the best truth from trustworthy news sources—so you'll then insist truly bad things will get fixed. But if instead you are educated by untrustworthy news sources—then your consciousness could be warped to where you are hating and fighting with your best friends. Clue: untrustworthy news sources never seriously report news about the world's most critical emergency—Global warming.]

07.10 Molly Scott Cato: ‘It’s the wealthy who are causing climate change’

07.09 Judge reinstates Madrid's low emissions zone [Yeh!]

07.07 How Solar Panels Work (And Why They're Taking Over the World) [Hope they leave space between panels for wild flowers to grow so birds and butterflies can flourish!]

07.05 Tree planting 'has mind-blowing potential' to tackle climate crisis

07.04 On reflection: how the 'albedo effect' is melting the Antarctic

07.04 US produces far more waste and recycles far less of it than other developed countries [As expected—and made worse by Trump—the U.S. is best at being the worst]07.03 Booming LNG industry could be as bad for climate as coal, experts warn

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07.16 Describing 'Future We Want to Live In' Scores of Groups Unveil New Blueprint for Reproductive Rights

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07.16 Money Laundering Scandal Forces Puerto Rico’s Governor to Cut His Vacation Short — Just in Time for Another Scandal

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07.15 Finding the Future in Radical Rural America

07.15 Sanders Accuses Biden of Parroting Pharma and Insurance Industry Script With Attacks on Medicare for All [Like Trump, Biden explains why he's unelectable every day.]

07.15 If there is an 'immigrant' who has failed to integrate in America, it's Donald Trump

07.15 Trump tells Ocasio-Cortez and other female progressives to 'go back' to 'original' countries

07.15 Trump Takes Pelosi's Side Against AOC and The Squad as Intraparty Fight Over Immigration Continues [Its about much more than immigration, its about the Corporate Dominance—by many of the same companies, even—over both major Political Parties. With too few exceptions, neither party has represented The Public since Nixon generously raised the minimum wage (Part D Medicare and ACA both became Frankenstein legislation due to excessive corporate price-fixing influence), and that has to change!]

07.14 Trump: People like Paul Ryan almost killed the Republican Party [Then it's too bad he didn't stay to finish the job!]

07.13 Trump's POS Labor Secretary, Acosta, Out. POS Number 2, Linked to Abramoff, to Fill Role [A willingness to perform criminal behavior seems the only competency required...]

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07.15 Australia 'deeply concerned' about China's treatment of Uighur people [What are the reasons, exactly, that justify harsh imprisonment of a million people?]

07.15 Zuma tells South Africa corruption inquiry he is victim of foreign plot [Unaccountable corrupt governments are so in fashion these days...]

07.14 Warren vows to probe U.S. crimes on immigrants if elected [Can you imagine living in a nation with a working Justice System? How far we've fallen!]

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07.16 Trump’s race fantasy is clear: the US as home for whites fleeing Europe [1:09 video]

07.15 India’s Terrifying Water Crisis

07.15 Australia now has the highest minimum wage in the world [From 1960 to 2018 – the U.S. has fallen from 1st place to below the tenth place and off the chart]

07.14 Kasich: The chilling effect of British ambassador's leaked memos

07.14 'Just a matter of when': the $20bn plan to power Singapore with Australian solar

07.14 At least 24 Yellow Vests lost eyes in violent protests. Now they're more determined than ever [Protests of all kinds will continue until systemic inequality loses political dominance]

07.13 New Zealand Begins Gun Buyback Prompted by Mosque Attacks

07.13 After a Police Shooting, Ethiopian Israelis Seek a ‘Black Lives Matter’ Reckoning [Since so-called modern humans evolved there have been 10,000 generations of people. It is extremely far-fetched to think anyone is racially pure. SO ALL THIS HATE IS INCREDIBLY STUPID.]

07.13 After a Police Shooting, Ethiopian Israelis Seek a ‘Black Lives Matter’ Reckoning

07.13 Brazil’s President May Appoint Son, Friend to the Trumps, as Ambassador to U.S. [Friend of the Trumps, so we know they're all brain-dead except about near-term profits. They are clear-cutting the Amazon Rain Forest to feed-then-butcher millions of methane farting cows, over and over. Yep, that's there business plan. So therefore the rest of the world will hopefully plant billions of trees elsewhere to sequester CO2 to offset what the Bolsonaro family and investors are destroying. What's wrong with this picture?]

07.13 Trump’s Cruelty and Mexico’s Duty [Our president is immoral to his core and reacts to things like a child, not understanding that his actions are often crueler than they should be. And that cruelty will never completely be excused or forgotten—the people's hatred of Trump is growing, like the Texan's hatred when President General Santa Anna laid seige to the Alamo, which was Mexico's territory at the time...]

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  Barry C. Lynn's ''Cornered: The New Monopoly Capitalism and Economics of Destruction''

ECONOMIC ANALYSIS:

Barry C. Lynn's "Cornered: The New Monopoly Capitalism and Economics of Destruction"

by Stephen Lendman
Thursday, 4 March 2010

Without antitrust enforcement, monopolies now run America. It will take more than a lawsuit or two to overthrow America's corporatist oligarchy and restore a model of capitalism that protects our rights as property holders and citizens.

Lynn is director of the Markets, Enterprise, and Resiliency Initiative, a senior fellow at the New America Foundation, and author of "Too Big to Fail" about the dangers of monopoly capitalism.

He expands on the threat in his newest book titled, "Cornered: The New Monopoly Capitalism and the Economics of Destruction," explaining today's peril given the power of predatory giants.

They control governments, the courts, war and peace, dominant information sources, and essential services, including health care, air and water, what we eat and drink, where we live, what we wear, and school curricula to the highest levels. They own genetic code patents, basic human life elements to be commodified the same as toothpaste, tomatoes or toilet paper.

Omnipotent, they plunder recklessly, ruthlessly at our expense. They're private tryannies, endangering humanity, basic freedoms, environmental sustainability, and planetary survival. Without exaggeration, they're unaccountable, unchecked "weapons of mass destruction."

In "Cornered," Lynn explains the danger and urgency to address it. Our lives and futures depend on it.

It might have been different had Thomas Jefferson and James Madison prevailed over John Adams and Alexander Hamilton in crafting America's Bill of Rights. They wanted 12, not 10, including "freedom from a permanent military (and) monopolies in commerce."

Imagine the possibilities had they prevailed, or if early leaders agreed with Jefferson in 1816, seven years after his presidency, saying in a letter to a friend:

"I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country."

Earlier, he opposed chartering the first Bank of the United States, a 19th century version of today's central bank, what Andrew Jackson called a "hydra-headed monster," and Lincoln described as predatory money powers "more despotic than a monarch, more insolent than autocracy and more selfish than a bureaucracy." He feared they'd accumulate enough wealth and power to destroy the Republic, similar to former Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis' view saying, "We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of the few, but we can't have both."

Others call it fascism or a reasonable facsimile with elements including:

  • the despotic union of corporate and state power - aka corporatism;
  • rampant corruption;
  • the disdain for human rights, civil liberties, and ordinary workers;
  • the dominance of militarism, belligerency, and permanent wars;
  • fraudulent elections;
  • an obsession with national security;
  • the control of public information; and
  • the omnipotence of corporate giants, taking full advantage to pillage and profiteer.

Lynn's book tells why, beginning in his preface titled, "Of Rule and Ruin," saying he warned about monopolization dangers because:

"our political economy is run by a compact elite that is able to fuse the power of our public government with the power of private corporate governments in ways that enable members of the elite (to freely decide) who wins, who loses, and who pays."

His book is "a chronicle of a death foretold, and the corpse on the street (is) the American Republic." Consolidated corporate power and the political complicity behind it means monopolists run the country and the world, justifying it as free-market fundamentalism - a corrupted deception masking predatory dominance that destroys democratic freedoms.

Ronald Reagan accelerated it when government stopped enforcing antitrust laws, and encouraged consolidation, production outsourcing, destruction of America's manufacturing base, the offshoring of high-paying jobs, financialization's ascendency and power of Wall Street, and the ability of corporate predators to break the law and get away with it, today more than ever under Obama.

Lynn calls his book "a sort of tour of monopoly in all its many guises, in the United States today....how monopolists rip us off as consumers, raising the prices we must pay" for everything including essentials becoming more unaffordable. He covers new monopoly forms and others thought long ago vanished. Understanding them is key to knowing the dangers, from phenomena including:

  • problems launching and successfully running a small business;
  • good jobs disappearing, replaced by low-paying service ones with few benefits;
  • the destruction of organized labor, aided by corrupted union bosses;
  • skyrocketing medical costs;
  • blocking efficient, low cost technologies that hurt profits;
  • low quality food, drugs and other products;
  • the burgeoning national debt and current account deficit; and
  • corporatization's corrupting dominance heading American toward despotism with governments as willing partners.

The auto industry is instructive, Lynn saying it "resembles the Hydra, the many-headed monster from Greek mythology." Like their heads relying on one body, the automakers "increasingly rely on a single common body of companies that supply the same components to all of them."

In today's hard times, they stand or fall together, governments facilitating consolidation and bailing out the majors, or in other words, socializing risks, privatizing profits, and doing it for other endangered sectors, Wall Street getting the most by far from a privatized central bank they own and US Treasury they control.

Lynn structures his book in three parts:

  • examples of monopolies and the fallout from unrestrained corporate dominance;
  • the effects on ordinary people; and
  • how it affects other systems - ones in place "to protect peaceful international relations, our knowledge of how to make the products and grow the foods we need, and our political institutions."

Combined, he reveals a neofeudalist system of vast size and power, dominating all major American and global industries, consolidating for greater strength, partnered with governments, operating ruthlessly, crushing competition, exploiting workers, and colluding for greater control, the public welfare be damned.

Without antitrust enforcement, monopoly options include:

  • home-based ones to build a power base to capture global markets;
  • pincer ones - "One of the oldest techniques for capturing and protecting monopoly positions" by controlling related activities, then using them to consolidate and crush competition;
  • trading ones that rely on offshore suppliers, investing instead in marketing and strategic alliances for greater market share;
  • middleman ones to build power positions between producers and end users;
  • privatized public monopolies - the simplest, fastest way to create private ones;
  • leapfrog ones by repackaging old businesses in new technologies to escape government oversight;
  • futures ones so financiers can dominate trading markets for commodities, financial instruments and currencies, etc.;
  • respecting other monopolies so they'll respect yours; and
  • perfecting your monopoly with new positions, raising prices to exploit them.

These practices made the land of "free-market capitalism" the land of monopoly, Lynn calling it nothing mysterious, saying:

Monopoly is just "a form of government that one group of human beings imposes on another group, (its purpose being to let) the first group....transfer wealth and power to (itself. They) organize and disorganize, to grab and smash, to rule and ruin, in ways that serve their interests only. At bottom, monopoly is merely a political tool," not because of a better product or service, but through better capitalization and political connections.

The rich "reappropriated the institution of the corporation after (early 20th century antitrust laws restrained them), regarding (them) as the 'owners' of these institutions lies at the heart of our present crisis."

Our system's single biggest problem is having ceded "almost complete power over these institutions (to) a class of people whose interests (aren't) served....by building things but by breaking" them. Capitalism lets some people "use the power in concentrated capital to harness free citizens" and crush democratic freedoms.

As a result, monopolies run America. Antitrust enforcement is null and void, and according to Lynn: "It will take more than a lawsuit or two to overthrow America's corporatist oligarchy and restore a model of capitalism that protects our rights as property holders and citizens."

Getting money out of politics is key - the reality that big money dictates policy, pre-selects candidates, predetermines outcomes, gets the best democracy it can buy, assures a de facto one-party state, and a dominant media trumpeting the best of all possible worlds that's, in fact, corrupted, broken, despotic, and ruinous by benefiting the rich against the rest.

Short of sweeping fundamental change, nothing will deter corporate giants from securing total global control in a world intolerable for most, the direction we're now heading unless mass people power stops them. There's no other way! So what are we waiting for?


Stephen Lendman

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His blog is sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



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This story was published on March 4, 2010.
 



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