The following letter from Australian anti-war and Latin American solidarity activist Joan Coxsedge—who is also a former member of the Victoria state parliament--originally appeared in an Australian-Cuban solidarity group’s newsletter)
"April 25, 2016
"Hope you’re OK. More than OK, actually, to take on the dark forces eating
"The Panama Papers, a one-year investigation by more than 100 reporters
worldwide revealed that as much as $21 trillion in global wealth is
being hidden behind thousands of largely untraceable shell companies so
rich crooks can avoid paying tax, the majority of them operating accounts
through three big banks, UBS, Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs. And if
you add in the gold, yachts and racehorses that aren’t included, the theft is
"The papers gave us the merest sniff of the endemic corruption
engulfing the world, with the ongoing deterioration in public services,
crushing of trade unions, increase in poverty and collapse of the
world’s ecosystems where `the market’ decides our fate. Unfortunately
most people see these as isolated events, rather than as a deliberate
coherent policy - neoliberalism.
"The term neoliberalism was first defined at a meeting in Paris in 1938 by two exiles from Austria, Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek who argued that government planning crushed individualism. IN 1947, Hayek set up a transatlantic network of rich individuals to promote his views, backed by powerful think tanks, the Heritage Foundation, the Cato Institute, the Institute of Economic Affairs, the Center for Police Studies and the Adam Smith Institute. But neoliberalism stayed on the margins until the 1970s when it entered the mainstream with the help of sympathetic journalists and political advisers, and elements were adopted by the Carter White House and Britain's Callaghan Government.
"After the election of Reagan and Thatcher, however, it really took off, using the IMF, the World Bank, the Maastricht Treaty and
World Trade organisation; and it was even promoted by parties nominally considered
‘left’ (think Keating's strident deregulation/privatisation campaign).
"As Noam Chomsky points out, it might seem odd that a doctrine preaching
choice and freedom used the slogan ‘there is no alternative’, but neoliberalism’s
definition of ‘freedom’ means freedom to suppress wages,
freedom to poison rivers, freedom to screw the poor and freedom to
lie and cheat The ‘trickle down’ bullshit that tax cuts for the wealthy
would create jobs for the masses saw all the wealth gush upwards
while wages trickled down.
"Fascist movements build their base, not from
the politically active but from the politically inactive, among the ‘losers’ who
feel they have no voice or role to play in society, but it’s not enough to oppose
a broken system. We must present a coherent alternative by talking
and debating and challenging authority. But no debate here. Just silence
"Our public education is also up for grabs as if State Aid hasn’t decimated it.
While state schools struggle for the basics, millions of taxpayer dollars are
being funnelled to some of the wealthiest schools in the country for tennis
courts, aquatic centres, research facilities and multi-purpose halls with orchestra
"Vanguard has posted an excellent article about plans to further
bugger up state education with some very nasty edu-business groups sniffing
around to reshape it in the US mould by exploiting the various ‘free’ trade
agreements, especially the monstrous Trans Pacific Partnership or Trade
In Services Agreement. Unless we specifically exclude education, private
companies are gearing up to ‘move in’.
"I share John Pilger’s rage about the destruction of our world and how people
are being conned. In 2009, President Obama pledged to an adoring crowd
in Prague to ‘free the world of nuclear weapons’. And did the very opposite
by building more nuclear weapons, warheads, delivery systems and nuclear
factories than any other US president, costing more than $1 trillion.
- once part of the Soviet Union - has become a CIA theme park, a regime
full of Nazis who openly praise Hitler. In Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia
- next door to Russia - the US is deploying troops, tanks and heavy
weapons, with a parallel campaign against China.
"‘President Cool’ recently
sent in drones to slaughter hundreds in Somalia and every Tuesday he’s
handed a list of ‘candidates’ for ‘death by drone’
"Trump is hateful, but not
nearly as dangerous as Hillary Clinton. Backed to the hilt by the political and
financial elites, she’s hailed as the first female president, a facade to hide
her past as the embodiment of a violent imperial system
"And then we have Fidel Castro. A giant of a man who berated ‘Brother
Obama’ during his Cuban visit for what he didn’t say ‘…native populations
don’t exist in Obama’s mind. Nor does he say that the Revolution swept
away racial discrimination, or that pensions and salaries for all Cubans were
decreed by it before Mr Barack Obama was ten years old.
"The hateful, racist
bourgeois custom of hiring strongmen to expel Black citizens from recreational
centres was swept away by the Cuban Revolution’ and so much more.
"Hated by Washington who wanted him dead. Like Hugo Chavez, who is dead. A crushing loss.
" Stories about Hugo Chavez’ death have resurfaced
by Eva Golinger, author/lawyer who has written extensively about US intervention
in Venezuela. Sounds like fiction, but FOI provided irrefutable
evidence of CIA complicity behind the 2002 coup when Chavez was
kidnapped and set up to be killed.
"There were many other assassination
attempts that were thwarted, some involving terrorist Luis Posada Carriles,
but the most shocking was the role of Leamsy Salazar, one of Chavez’
closest aides and key member of his inner circle who, after Chavez’
death, was secretly flown to the US by a US secret agency as part of a
witness protection programme.
"Collaborator? Traitor? Part of a CIA
Black Op to assassinate Chavez? Did he administer the poison?
then there was the role of another aide, Captain Velazquez and his wife
Claudia, Chavez’ nurse for several years who looked after his health. Both
appeared in the Panama Papers as owning a shell company worth millions
of dollars and a lot of other property, impossible amounts for an army captain
to have earned legitimately.
"We know that the US Army was developing
an injectable radiation weapon for political assassinations as far back as
1948 and the Church Commission hearings into the Kennedy assassination
also uncovered the existence of CIA weapons to induce heart attacks and
soft-tissue cancers. More than 60 years later, we can only imagine.
of the Free and Home of the Brave? You’ve got to be joking. Killings and
wars are Washington’s main business.
"Viva Fidel! Viva Cuba!
Word: The humanities aren't dead
5 hours ago