Majorityrights News > Category: Liberalism

Polish PM draws link between London attack and EU migrant policy

Posted by DanielS on Thursday, 23 March 2017 23:42.

Reuters, “Polish PM draws link between London attack and EU migrant policy”, 23 Mar 2017:

Poland’s prime minister drew a link on Thursday between an attack in London targeting the British parliament and the European Union’s migrant policy, saying the assault vindicated Warsaw’s refusal to take in refugees.


Poland’s Prime Minister Beata Szydlo holds a news conference at the end of a European Union leaders summit in Brussels, Belgium, March 10, 2017. REUTERS/Yves Herman

Five people, including the attacker, were killed and about 40 injured on Wednesday after a car ploughed into pedestrians near the British parliament. Police believe the attack was “Islamist-related”, but have given no details about the attacker, who they say was acting alone.

Poland’s right-wing, eurosceptic government has refused to accept any of the 6,200 migrants allocated to it under the European Union’s quota scheme that is designed to share the burden of taking in the large numbers of migrants and refugees who have come to Europe over the past two years.

“I hear in Europe very often: do not connect the migration policy with terrorism, but it is impossible not to connect them,” Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydlo told private broadcaster TVN24.

Earlier this week the EU’s migration commissioner, Dimitris Avramopoulos, on a visit to Warsaw, warned member states against failing to host refugees to help alleviate pressure on frontline states bearing the brunt of arrivals across the Mediterranean.

“The commissioner should concentrate on what to do to avoid such acts as yesterday in London ... Poland will not succumb to blackmail such as that expressed by the commissioner,” Szydlo said.

“The commissioner is coming to Warsaw and trying to tell us: you have to do what the EU decided, you have to take these migrants .... Two days later another terrorist attack in London occurs,” she said.

The leader of Szydlo’s ruling Law and Justice party (PiS), Jaroslaw Kaczynski, said back in 2015 that refugees could bring diseases and parasites to Poland, which is staunchly Roman Catholic and has very few Muslim immigrants.

The migrant issue is just one of several over which Poland is at odds with the EU.

Also on Thursday Szydlo said Poland might not accept a declaration EU leaders are due to endorse in Rome this month that will chart the bloc’s course after Britain leaves unless it addresses issues Warsaw considers crucial.


EU Says They Can Force All Members, Including Poland, to Take Migrants

Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 22 March 2017 23:59.

Breitbart, “EU Says They Can Force All Members, Including Poland, to Take Migrants”, 21 March 2017:

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The European Union’s commissioner for migration says there are ways to make all EU members states comply with the program of relocation of migrants among them.

Dimitris Avramopoulos made the statement Tuesday in Warsaw, where he is visiting the growing European border guard agency, Frontex.

Poland is refusing to accept migrants, arguing they are chiefly economic migrants, not war refugees, and may potentially pose a threat.

The relocation plan is intended to ease the pressure on countries that have taken the brunt of the migrant wave: Italy and Greece.

Without naming Poland, Avramopoulos said the EU has the “tools, the means and the power” to convince all members to comply and will make an assessment of response by the end of September. He mentioned no sanctions.

  Avramopoulos

Dimitris Avramopoulos:

Since 1 November 2014 he is serving as EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship in the Juncker Commission.

Avramopoulos has a friendly relation with the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan since they were Mayors of Athens and Istanbul respectively. He is deemed one of the main proponents of Greek-Turkish rapprochement.


Dickenhorst Farm Cash Cow

Posted by DanielS on Wednesday, 22 March 2017 04:54.

Reveal News, “White nationalist gets his money from cotton fields – and the government”, By Lance Williams 17 March 2017:

Topics: Accountability

Two weeks after last year’s presidential election, white nationalist Richard Spencer held forth on a cable news show about how white people built America.

“White people ultimately don’t need other races in order to succeed,” he told the audience of the black-oriented program, “NewsOne Now.”

The exchange grew heated as host Roland Martin questioned Spencer’s rhetoric: Didn’t slaves help build America? Wasn’t the nation’s 19th-century economic boom propelled by the slave labor that produced the world’s cotton on Southern plantations?

America’s rise was “not through black people” and “has nothing to do with slavery,” Spencer retorted. “White people could have figured out another way to pick cotton,” he said. “We do it now.”

He is in a position to know. Spencer, along with his mother and sister, are absentee landlords of 5,200 acres of cotton and corn fields in an impoverished, largely African American region of Louisiana, according to records examined by Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting. The farms, controlled by multiple family-owned businesses, are worth millions: A 1,600-acre parcel sold for $4.3 million in 2012.

The Spencer family’s farms also are subsidized heavily by the federal government. From 2008 through 2015, the Spencers received $2 million in U.S. farm subsidy payments, according to federal data.

USDA farm subsidy payments to Spencer family companies, 2008-2015

Farm Payments

Dickenhorst Farms $1,014,558
Spencer Farms $524,655
Dickenhorst Trust $201,460
Sher-Di-Je Land $165,029
Poor Richard Partnership $98,878
A-Renee Partnership $78,016
Total $2,082,596

Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture data compiled by the Environmental Working Group

Although Spencer has attracted extensive media attention as a leader of the so-called alt-right movement – particularly after he drew Nazi salutes at an event celebrating Donald Trump’s election – he never has explained publicly how he supports himself while actively promoting his agenda via conferences and media appearances. The finances of his nonprofit think tank, the National Policy Institute, are a mystery; the organization hasn’t filed a public report since 2013. On Monday, the Los Angeles Times reported that the IRS revoked the institute’s tax-exempt status.

Spencer, 38, is a dropout from a Duke University Ph.D. history program who emerged during the Trump campaign as one of the nation’s most visible white separatist agitators. In his writing, speeches and interviews, he has given an intellectualized explanation for how he came to advocate creating a whites-only “ethno state” in North America. While in graduate school, he has said, he was compelled by critiques of multiculturalism and political correctness and by demographic data indicating that whites are en route to minority status in the United States.

But the Spencer family’s business interests and geographic history suggest a different possible lineage for Richard Spencer’s racist politics. The family’s farm holdings are a legacy of its ties to the Jim Crow South, passed down by Spencer’s grandfather, who built the business during the turbulent civil rights era.

Spencer family land holdings in Louisiana
Farming company Parish Acreage
Dickenhorst Farms Tensas 1,888
Dickenhorst Farms East Carroll 967
Sher-Di-Je Land Tensas 1,186
A-Renee Partners Madison 753
Poor Richard Partnership Franklin 400
Spencer, Sherry Madison 90
Total   5,284

Sources: Louisiana Tax Commission parish tax rolls; parish assessment records

Spencer declined in an interview this week to discuss how much money he personally receives from cotton farming and government subsidies and whether that income funds his political activities.

“I’m not involved in any direct day-to-day running of the business,” he said, later adding: “I’m going to navigate the world as it is, and I’m not going to be a pauper.”

One Spencer family farming company, which holds title to 400 acres of land, is called the Poor Richard Partnership.

In the interview, Spencer also downplayed his family’s influence on his political views, saying, “My parents are very mainstream Episcopalian Republicans in Dallas.”

Although Spencer grew up in an affluent neighborhood of Dallas and now splits his time between Montana and Washington, D.C., his family lived in the South for generations. Records show his mother attended segregated schools as a girl in the small northeast Louisiana city of Monroe. Later, Spencer’s mother inherited farms in northeast Louisiana from her late father. Today, her two children are her business partners.

Spencer’s mother did not respond to an email and voicemails seeking comment for this story. In the past, she has said she does not share her son’s views. In an open letter sent to their local newspaper in December, Spencer’s parents, Sherry and Rand, said that while they love their son, “we are not racists. We have never been racists. We do not endorse the idea of white nationalism.”

The region that is home to the Spencers’ farms has a history of slavery and racism. Through the civil rights era, the Klan targeted black residents there with lynchings, cross burnings and other violence. In Tensas Parish, where the Spencers own 3,000 acres of farmland, blacks didn’t win the right to vote until 1964, according to Elvadus Fields Jr., mayor of the town of St. Joseph.

White supremacist views typically run in the family, said writer and race relations expert Cleo Scott Brown. Feelings of racial superiority often are passed “from generation to generation, because that’s what they believe,” said Brown, whose father – a civil rights leader in East Carroll Parish, where the Spencers own 900 acres of farmland – was shot and wounded during a 1962 voter registration drive, allegedly by a member of the Ku Klux Klan.

Agribusiness in the region today is heavily mechanized and provides few jobs. In 2013, CNN reported that East Carroll Parish suffers from the worst income inequality in the nation: The richest 5 percent of residents earned an average of $611,000 per year, 90 times what the poorest 20 percent earned. The parish’s population is 67 percent black.

Ownership of Spencer family farming companies

Farming company

Owners
Dickenhorst Farms Sherry Spencer, Richard Spencer and sister
Dickenhorst Trust Dickenhorst Farms (Sherry Spencer, Richard Spencer and sister)
Sher-Di-Je Land Dickenhorst Farms (Sherry Spencer, Richard Spencer and sister)
Spencer Farms Sherry Spencer
Poor Richard Partnership Sherry Spencer*
A-Renee Partners Sherry Spencer and daughter

*Records show that Richard Spencer has received subsidy income from the partnership but don’t identify him as an owner.

Sources: U.S. Department of Agriculture data compiled by the Environmental Working Group; Louisiana secretary of state filings

Race relations have improved significantly in recent decades. But after Trump’s election, some white residents celebrated by draping their pickup trucks with Confederate flags and driving through the region’s towns, according to the Rev. Roosevelt Grant, head of the NAACP branch in Winnsboro, Franklin Parish, near another of the Spencers’ farms.

The Trump presidency, he said, “has caused people to pray more.”

Spencer’s maternal grandfather, Dr. R.W. Dickenhorst, established the family farming business. He was a radiologist who started a medical practice in Monroe in 1952 and became wealthy and socially prominent, according to local newspaper obituaries.

Racial segregation was a given in Monroe then. Blacks were barred from housing, schools and public facilities used by whites. White superiority “was the way of life; that was the way it was, and anyone challenging it was challenging God’s will,” said the Rev. Roosevelt Wright Jr., a local historian in Monroe.

Dickenhorst’s daughter, Sherry, who would grow up to be Richard Spencer’s mother, enrolled in all-white Neville High School in 1962, according to district records. In 1964, at the start of her junior year, integration of the school began, with a single African American student enrolling.

As Dickenhorst’s medical practice prospered, he bought farmland in northeast Louisiana on the Mississippi River’s west bank. He died decades later, in 2002, and his wife died the following year. By then, their only daughter was the wife of a wealthy Dallas eye surgeon and the mother of two grown children: Richard Spencer and his sister, who did not respond to an email and phone calls seeking comment.

Today, through Dickenhorst Farms and several related companies, Sherry Spencer, 68, and her two children jointly own most of the family farmland, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data compiled by the nonprofit Environmental Working Group. Sherry Spencer is general partner of Dickenhorst Farms, and Richard Spencer and his sister are part owners, according to state and federal records. The family contracts out crop production to local farmers, a common practice in a region where corporations and absentee owners control much of the land.

The Spencer family’s farms are headquartered at a $3 million home in the ski town of Whitefish, Montana, where Sherry Spencer now lives. Also headquartered there: Richard Spencer’s think tank, his AltRight.com website and other white nationalist-related enterprises he controls, including a book publisher and web design outfit. Spencer also has lived in Whitefish in recent years ­– sometimes in his mother’s home, sometimes in a condominium she owns, according to documents and interviews.

The Spencers have received payments from two federal farm programs. One is the commodity subsidy program, intended to guarantee income for farmers who are helping to maintain supplies of certain crops deemed important by the government. The other is the conservation reserve program, which pays farmers for environmentally sound farming practices. Most of the $2 million paid to the Spencers has been in commodity subsidy payments for growing cotton.

Yet, Spencer has been bitterly critical of America and its government.

“This is a sick, disgusting society,” he declared in his speech at an alt-right gathering in Washington after the election, “run by the corrupt, defended by hysterics, drunk on self-hatred and degeneracy.”

Note: I have no necessary qualms with Spencer’s wealth (though ultimately, something like Bowery’s/ William Jennings Bryan’s progressive land taxation based on site value might be in order) nor do I have anything against his family’s alleged history of wanting to live separately from blacks. - DanielS


Bold and Brash Intelligence: Examining Geert Wilders and the PVV in the Netherlands.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Thursday, 16 March 2017 04:17.

Introduction

‘Bold and Brash Intelligence’ is a feature that I’m inaugurating today, in which I’ll just give a very quick opinion about an event as it is unfolding, interpreting the facts on the ground to draw conclusions about the operational efficacy of a particular political tactic or strategy.

For the mechanics of the election in the Netherlands, the parties that contested it, and the way that the coalition politics of the Netherlands works, mainstream news organisations everywhere have already adequately described that, so I won’t repeat what is already understood by everyone.

I’ll just dive straight in to some points that I’d want to highlight, which I think are relevant to our readers here from an ethno-nationalist perspective.

The assumption I’m proceeding forward with in this article is that the objective of those who profess support or allegiance to the PVV is that they are concerned about the problem of mass migration of people from Muslim-majority countries into the Netherlands and they subjectively perceive that the PVV is a way to somehow counteract that threat.

If we accept that assumption as true, the central question then becomes, why does the PVV consistently fail to accomplish that, and how did it fail again last night, despite the fact that the conditions – for example the rise of the migrant crisis, the conspiratorial relationship between Rutte and Merkel, the secret deal with Turkey, and so on – could be seen as ripe issues for them to build significant gains atop? How did the PVV go from having 40% support, to having only 20% support in a year, despite the fact that all of these apparently terrifying events were occurring which they ought to have been able to politically capitalise on?

I will suggest some reasons.

1. The VVD moved slightly to the right in rhetoric so as to sap PVV’s base

Mark Rutte’s VVD moved to the right in terms of rhetoric, and was able to take away a significant amount of the PVV’s support. 34% of the people who said that they voted for VVD, say that Rutte’s little battle against Turkish ministers influenced their vote. Clearly the optics of that fight, although lacking in any substance, helped Rutte. Given that the media environment in the Netherlands is one in which the PVV is portrayed as ‘extremist’, it means that for those who like to be risk-averse, it may be the case that they would rationalise making the ‘safe’ centre-right choice.

The VVD may also have either sought to emulate or been given help in emulating a strategy used by Angela Merkel in Germany several years prior. Casting oneself as a supporter of a ‘responsible and steady’ centre-right statesman who is willing to ‘resist populism’, is – paradoxically – psychologically rewarding to the kind of people who individually believe, either correctly or incorrectly, that the concept of ‘basic-bitch average civilian’ includes everyone except their own esteemed selves.

The nativist populist rhetoric which has become ubiquitous online and can be seen in loud campaign slogans and vague policies, paradoxically repels the very kind of people who are needed to make nativism successful. The politically-savvy cohort who is desperately needed by nativists and yet is absent everywhere, is the kind of person who is just above-average enough to see politics as being more than a public stage on which to have a moralistic battle of sentiments, but is unfortunately also not above-average enough to be willing to entertain a certain amount of deliberate stupidity or obfuscation for the sake of courting the below-average cohort which must also be secured in order to fully lock-in a victory.

Now, some people may be thinking, “But didn’t Trump show that it can work in the United States? He managed to get lots of people to vote for him by basically talking complete nonsense in a very loud voice, all day long, and people voted for it!” Yes, but the United States is populated by low-information voters who are moved by animal-spirits, with an electoral college that grants a large amount of weight to the opinions of a voting bloc of actual political retards who have been subjected to a kind of Pavlovian meme-conditioning for 40 years, so it’s a completely different environment there. There is no parallel to that in Europe. It is not possible to simply meme one’s way to victory through padding-out your vote with political ‘potatoes’ in Europe, no matter what party you are representing.

The other thing about ‘potatoes’ is that they are notoriously unreliable, even if you can find them and secure them in Europe. Because they tend to vote on appearance over substance, they are just as likely to vote for you, as they are to vote for a guy who comes out cosplaying as you in the week prior to the election. The PVV lost significant support to the VVD precisely due to that phenomenon. Having locked down the limited number of ‘potatoes’ that did exist, it couldn’t even hold them. Why even bother?

By way of an agricultural comparison, one which the Irish are surely familiar with, you could very well say that monocropping is the worst possible strategy. In other words: Live by the potato, die by the potato.

2. All substantive debates in the Netherlands are conducted behind a technocratic layer of abstraction, in which the PVV cohort does not participate

The Dutch people really like their technocratic TV debates and their statistics which they drag into every comments section and all over social media. In that sense they actually resemble the British voting profile, and that is not a bad thing.

The PVV of course failed to tap the breadth of issues that Dutch people have been discussing throughout the election, because the PVV is widely perceived as a single-issue party and acts exactly like a single-issue party.

Geert Wilders’ views on immigration, the refugee crisis, and the European Union are a key part of the national debate in the Netherlands, but the polls and a basic survey of the media shows that the biggest issues in the minds of voters are healthcare and social care for the elderly. Other issues of interest to them are law and order, social service provisioning, and so on.

Crucially, 81% of the Dutch people who voted for VVD say that they did so because they liked Rutte’s views on the economy.

If the PVV is seen as having either no economic platform, or alternately, a bad economic platform, is anyone really surprised that it’s also a party that cannot win?

3. The PVV attempts to publicly re-litigate the past 70 years of immigration policy and the majority are not responsive to it

Rather than focussing on one explicit part of the immigration situation – the issue of the actual threat posed by Europe’s lack of coherent external borders – as a fulcrum around which many other issues implicitly rotate, the PVV and other parties and groups similar to it, tend to have a habit of trying to re-litigate the entire history of immigration policy in Western Europe over the past 70 years. In one election.

Obviously this cannot work as part of electoral rhetoric, as it opens a wide flank for public debate and criticism which would otherwise not occur. Why bother talking about the overall immigration policy from years gone by, when you could instead – for example – just talk about the Bataclan attack and the security situation which led up to it?

It remains a mystery as to why political parties with nativist intentions do not yet understand how to strategically dress all their concerns up as security issues which – in reality – those concerns in fact are.

Having the entire debate through the lens of ‘culture’ and ‘civilisation’ ends up giving social services professionals, third sector organisations and charities, and political dilettantes the ability to talk their way out of recognising reality with increasingly complex verbiage and appeals to emotion.

There is however no appeal to emotion and no language construct which can be leveraged against the hard reality of bombs, bullets, armed police response times, economic disruption, and emergency services personnel putting out fires and carrying away body bags. It is a reality which everyone is forced to acknowledge simply by watching television.

‘Defence of your city from bombs and roving bands of armed ISIL-affiliated men’, sounds much more concrete to the average voter than ‘defence of Western Civilisation from Islamisation.’

‘Defence of your city’, is an angle which does not require the voter to accept any fact other than the simple fact that the Bataclan attack happened and that security services have accurately described how that attack took place.

The ‘Western Civilisation’ argument, however, requires that the voter must accept someone’s particular view on what that civilisation should look like or what it used to look like, and requires significant time and effort to articulate. This doesn’t mean people shouldn’t articulate such a view, but it shouldn’t be done as part of electoral messaging when you have a limited amount of time and space to make a point to people who have a limited attention-span. Yet, in a move that can only be seen as a mysterious herculean effort to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, almost all nativist groups would rather wax lyrical about ‘Western Civilisation’ than actually just exploit the really-existing feelings of terror which have manifested as a result of the absolutely exploitable series of terrorist attacks which have occurred in Europe since 2014.

4. The PVV embodies and vectors a pro-Zionist narrative-hijack and diminishes its own electability as a party in the process

This is the foundational point that underscores all the others, as I believe it is the fundamental root of the problem. The PVV is basically a party of Zionist-imperialism which is committed to socially-legitimating the State of Israel through the propagation of a ‘Clash of Civilisations’ narrative which conveniently – for Israeli communications operations commanders – posits that the State of Israel should be understood by Europeans to be the most important and most brittle line of defence against an allegedly monolithic ‘global Islam’.

It’s such a transparent narrative-hijack that one almost has to stand back in wonderment and stupefaction at how gullible a person would need to be to fall for it.

The PVV and the so-called ‘counter-jihad movement’ propagates messages of social-legitimation for Israel’s actions in Gaza and the West Bank by transforming every Islamist attack that takes place on European soil, into part of their ongoing narrative which usually contains the nonsensical words “this is what Israel has been fighting against all along.”

Nothing could be more absurd.

It is the foreign policy pursued by the State of Israel and vectored though the halls of American power, which has been one of key factors in sustaining the civil war in Syria from which the migration crisis arose, and furthermore, Israel is the same country which also – with no concern for the migration crisis – had one of its top think tanks advance the concept that it would be a ‘good’ idea for the West to deliberately let ISIL continue to exist. The State of Israel is a country whose strategic command has rationalised that since “Assad is now Iran” it would be better for Israel if “Al-Qaeda” or “one of those groups” were to be left running Syria in the aftermath of the war.

To posit that Israel could ever be a real ally of Europe on the issue of radical Islamic terror and the migrant crisis, is an absurdity. Yet it is an absurdly which is continually repeated by the likes of PVV politicians and allies, Geert Wilders himself, and the so-called ‘counter-jihad movement’.

The only way to explain that in the context of the Netherlands is to look at the ethno-racial identity of Geert Wilders himself, as his personality has a strong influence over the essential character and policy direction of the PVV. It is after all a party that was created by him.

Geert Wilders has volunteered at a Kibbutz during his youth, and has lived in Israel. Wilders’ paternal grandmother Johanna Meijer was a Dutch Jew who lived in the Dutch East Indies. Wilders’ family fled the Dutch East Indies during the Second World War shortly after Japanese occupation began, for reasons which probably need no explanation. Wilders has asserted that his father was Jewish. Additionally, Wilders is married to a Jewish-Hungarian diplomat.

Given that Jewishness clearly is a core part of Wilders’ identity and his talks and speeches on the matter only serve to bring that into sharper relief, no one should be surprised that things have turned out the way that they have as a consequence of having allowed Wilders to rise to a leadership position in Dutch the nationalist scene.

Whenever European nationalists engage in political bargains with Zionists, the Zionists will tend to inappropriately utilise the European nationalist organisations as a public relations show-piece whose mission is to divert all revenue streams toward projects which serve to socially-legitimate Israel’s foreign policy preferences among right-wing voters and will function as an aggressive public relations interface for Israel. That interface is then used by them to neutralise existing anti-Zionist sentiment on the right, or to forestall any imminent development of it there.

Combating anti-Zionist sentiment is basically the only thing that the PVV ever concretely accomplishes, which is why the PVV is in fact worse than useless.

Additionally, the PVV would probably have a wider appeal if it were not a Zionist party. Yet, for the operators of the party, the maintenance of the PVV as a ridiculous Zionist outfit is more important to them than actually winning at anything. Even when taken alone, that simple fact should speak volumes about the priorities of the so-called ‘activists’ who represent that party.

This whole assessment is simply a results-orientated approach to politics, devoid of any emotional bias. Even from the most cynical perspective, bartering with Zionists makes no sense.

Empirically speaking, have Europeans who bartered with Zionists ever been known to emerge with a good result for European nationalists? Scientifically speaking, has bartering with Zionists ever been known to work? 

The answer to that question is: Basically no.

Verdict: Into the trash

Some people like to claim that Geert Wilders and the PVV are bold and brash. In reality, Geert Wilders and the PVV are in fact worse than useless, and they belong in the trash.


Terror In Europe - a network of those unapprehended despite being on the radar before the acts

Posted by DanielS on Sunday, 12 March 2017 23:25.

READ MORE...


The coming US–China trade war will present opportunities for Australia in RCEP & FTAAP.

Posted by Kumiko Oumae on Sunday, 12 March 2017 04:29.

ASPI - The Strategist, ‘Would a US–China trade war pay dividends to Australia?’, 09 Mar 2017:

Among many other colourful characters, Donald Trump’s cabinet appointments include two protectionist and anti-China hardliners, Robert Lighthizer and Peter Navarro, who sit at the helm of US trade and industry policy. That decision confirms a belligerent change of tack in Sino­–American economic relations. But what are the implications for Australia?

A number of monetary economists, including Saul Eslake, have warned that a potential escalation to a full-blown China–US trade war poses the single biggest economic threat to Australia. That position argues that the already struggling global economy can’t face a superpower trade war, likely to be triggered by the Trump administration at the monetary level, when the RMB/USD exchange rate will reach the unprecedented level of 7 to 1 (it’s currently sitting at around 6.9). Furthermore, a falling Chinese currency combined with protectionist measures in the US will dampen the Chinese economy by way of reduced volumes of exports and higher interest rates that will spread across the Asia–Pacific. According to such reasoning, that could have negative impacts for Australia’s economy; prices for iron ore, coal and natural gas could possibly drop—we’ll know by the middle of the year.

However, it’s questionable that such crisis would be detrimental to Australia. In fact, focusing on monetary dynamics alone fails to capture the role of industrial production and regulatory arrangements in the global supply chain.

On the contrary, after triangulating the trade and industrial data of the US, China and Australia and considering the current trade regulatory framework, there are substantial reasons to argue that Australia is well placed to fill the gaps left by a wrecked US–China trade relationship at the best of its industrial capacity. Australia is indeed one of a handful of countries to have solid free trade agreements in place with both the US and China.

As it currently stands, the annual US–China trade balance is worth over US$600 billion—around the yearly value of Australia’s overall trade volumes.

Australia’s rocks and crops economy—in particular the growing productivity potential of its agricultural and mining sectors—is strong enough to rise above global monetary tensions and falling commodity prices, thanks to rising export volumes to both the US and China. It appears that the harder the two superpowers use their trade relations as leverage in their strategic competition, the harder they’ll need to look for other sources to sustain their industrial production levels and corporate supply chain.

In a trade war scenario, the possible initial hiccups in the global supply chain will likely be short-lived. In fact, let’s consider that about half of US imports are estimated to be made of intra-firm trade, and that protectionist measures from abroad tend to have insignificant effects on the production input of Chinese State-owned firms. Thus, multinational corporations are proven to be particularly adept at   quickly replacing the flows of their industrial production and distribution, as is shown by history.

In other words, in the event of a Sino–American crisis, the major trading actors in both countries will be able and willing to promptly move their business somewhere else.

Thanks to the existing spaghetti bowl of international economic partnerships, Australia is in prime position to be this “somewhere else” for both countries. In fact, Australia is the second largest economy and Sino–American trading partner of the only six countries that have in place free trade agreements with both the US and China, including South Korea, Singapore, Chile, Peru and Costa Rica.

The liquefied natural gas (LNG) trade is a significant case study for Australia in this instance. Australia is the world’s second largest LNG exporter, and is set to become the first by 2020. It exports more than $16 billion a year of LNG and by 2020 the LNG industry is expected to contribute $65 billion to the Australian economy, equating to 3.5% of its GDP. 2016 saw the start of LNG exports from the US and an unprecedented boost of Chinese imports. In a trade war scenario, the US would be locked out of China’s thriving market and thus LNG prices would rise even higher than they already have. With sharply rising production capacity, Australia needs to expand and diversify its customer base to keep the lion’s share of the global LNG market. China’s response to Trump’s trade policy is set to dampen the rise of a   strong emerging competitor of Australia’s highly lucrative LNG industry, and thus open up new commercial frontiers.

The LNG example clearly shows that Australia’s economy would benefit from a contained US–China trade crisis. Nevertheless, should that trade crisis escalate beyond the economy, Australia’s luck may run out.

The Chinese leadership doesn’t hide the fact that promoting international economic integration outside of the US control serves the purpose of carving greater geopolitical autonomy and flexibility in the global decision-making processes. Beside Trump’s trade policy, Xi Jinping’s diplomatic strategy may also speed up the end of the US­–China detente initiated by Nixon and Kissinger in the 1970s. It remains to be seen whether China will also pursue hard-line policies to push the US outside of the Asia–Pacific. In that instance, Australia would be caught between a rock and a hard place.

If the US­–China trade war were to escalate to the geopolitical level, the American order in the Asia–Pacific would enter uncharted waters. For one thing, such an unsavoury development may compel Australia to make a clear choice between trading with China and preserving America’s security patronage.

Giovanni Di Lieto lectures International Trade Law at Monash University.

One of the most interesting things about all this is that while Australia is going to be compelled to make that choice, the choice has essentially already been made through the pattern of trade relationships which Australian politicians have chosen to cultivate.

The only way that Australia would choose the United States in that scenario, would be if Australians decided that they would like to deliberately take a massive economic dive so that they can ‘Make America Great Again’ even though that is not their country, and so that they can avoid being called ‘anti-White’ by the legions of anonymous Alt-Right trolls roaming around on Twitter using Robert Whitacker’s ‘mantra’ on anyone who won’t support the geostrategic and geoeconomic intertests of the United States, the Russian Federation, and Exxonmobil specifically. 

Given that we know that Australians don’t care about America or Russia more than they care about the economic prosperity of their own country, the outcome is already baked into the cake. AFR carried an article last year which can be used to forecast what is likely to happen, and I’ll quote it in full here now:

AFR.com, ‘How our free trade deals are helping Australian companies right now’, 17 Nov 2016 (emphasis added):

Free trade should be embraced, not feared.

It has lifted living standards, grown Australia’s economy and created thousands of jobs.

While it is becoming more popular to denounce globalisation and flirt with protectionism, we cannot turn our back on free trade.

Australia’s economy has withstood global challenges and recorded 25 years of continuous growth because we’re open to the world.   Since Australia’s trade barriers came down, we’ve reaped the rewards.

Trade liberalisation has lifted the income of households by around $4500 a year and boosted the country’s gross domestic product by 2.5 per cent to 3.5 per cent, creating thousands of jobs.

One in five jobs now involve trade-related activities. This will grow as liberalised trade gives our producers, manufacturers and services providers better access to billions of consumers across the globe, not just the 24 million who call Australia home.

However, not everyone sees the value of free trade. Some see it, and the forces of globalisation, as a threat to their standard of living, rather than an opportunity to improve it.

When it comes to free trade, we often hear about the bad but not the good.

The nature of news means the factory closing gets more coverage than the one opening.

Chances are you heard about the Ford plant closing, but not the $800 million Boeing has invested in Australia and the 1200 people who work at their Port Melbourne facility.

You may have heard about Cubbie Station, but not heard that its purchase staved off bankruptcy, and has since seen millions of dollars invested in upgrades of water-saving infrastructure, a doubling of contractors, more workers, and of course, money put into the local economy supporting jobs and local businesses.

Key to attracting investment, jobs

The free trade agreements the Coalition concluded with the North Asian powerhouse economies of China, Japan and Korea are key to attracting investment and creating more local jobs.

The Weilong Grape Wine Company has said the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement is the reason it’s planning to build a new plant in Mildura.

This is a story being played out across the country.

Businesses large and small, rural and urban, are taking advantage of the preferential market access the FTAs offer Aussie businesses into the giant, growing markets of North Asia.

Australian Honey Products is building a new factory in Tasmania to meet the demand the trifecta of FTAs has created.

Owner Lindsay Bourke says the free trade agreements have been “wonderful” for  his business. “We know that we are going to grow and it’s enabled us to employ more people, more local people,”  he said.

It is the same story for NSW skincare manufacturer Cherub Rubs, who will have to double the size of their factory. “The free trade agreements with China and Korea really mean an expansion, which means new Australian jobs manufacturing high-quality products,” said Cherub CEO John Lamont.

It is easy to see why the three North Asian FTAs are forecast to create 7,900 jobs this year, according to modelling conducted by the Centre for International Economics.

Australia has a good story when it comes to free trade. In the past three years, net exports accounted for more than half of Australia’s GDP growth.

Exports remain central to sustaining growth and economic prosperity. Last year exports delivered $316 billion to our economy, representing around 19 per cent of GDP.

This underscores the importance of free trade and why it is a key element of the Turnbull Government’s national economic plan.

The Coalition is pursuing an ambitious trade agenda, and more free trade agreements, to ensure our economy keeps growing and creating new jobs.

On Friday I arrive in Peru for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministerial Meeting.

Free trade will be at front of everyone’s mind.

With the future of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) looking grim, my ministerial counterparts and I will work to conclude a study on the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP), which sets out agreed actions towards a future free trade zone.

We will also work to finalise a services road map, which will help grow Australian services exports in key markets including education, finance and logistics.

More to be done

The Coalition has achieved a lot when it comes to free trade, but there is more to do.

Momentum is building for concluding a free trade agreement with Indonesia, work towards launching free trade agreement negotiations with the European Union continues, we’ve established a working group with the United Kingdom that will scope out the parameters of a future ambitious and comprehensive Australia-UK FTA and we’re continuing to negotiate the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which brings together 16 countries that account for almost half of the world’s population.

The Turnbull government will continue to pursue an ambitious free trade agenda to keep our economy growing and creating more jobs.

Meanwhile Opposition Leader Bill Shorten continues to build the case for Labor’s embrace of more protectionist policies, claiming he will learn the lessons of the US election where it featured heavily.

What Labor doesn’t say though is that by adopting a closed economy mindset, they will close off the investment and jobs flowing from free trade. They’re saying no to Boeing’s $800 million investment in Australia and the Cubbie Station improvements; they’re saying no to businesses like Cherub Rubs and Australian Honey Products building new factories and the many local jobs they will create.

Steven Ciobo is the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment

Obligatory Taylor Swift
What’s not to love about all this?

I really think I love Anglo-Saxons. This is going to be fun, isn’t it? 

When Mr. Ciobo spoke of ‘a working group with the United Kingdom that will scope out the parameters of a future ambitious and comprehensive Australia-UK FTA’, he was not joking. That is happening and it is likely going to be another window that the UK will have into the formation of both RCEP and FTAAP, even though technically the UK is not physically in the Indo-Asian region.

I wrote an article several days ago called ‘A view of Brexit from Asia: Britain as a Pacific trading power in the 21st century.’ I chose at that time not to mention the Australian or New Zealand interface at all, but that article’s main point should be viewed as being reinforced by the point I’ve presented in here now.

I have also written an article today called, ‘US Government to build American competitiveness atop socio-economic retrogression and misery.’ It’s crucial to understand that time is of the essence, since the Americans are at the present moment in relative disarray compared to the rest of us. The Americans have not yet tamed and pacified the various economic actors in their own country, they are still working on that, and they also have yet to form a coherent internationalist counter-narrative to the one that is being enunciated by the governments of Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, China, and so on.

Some of you may be mystified by that statement. What do I mean that the Americans don’t have a coherent ‘internationalist counter-narrative’? I mean that while they are capable of explaining and rationalising their own position as a narrowly ‘America first’ position in a way that is pleasing to Americans, they are not able to export that view to regular people anywhere else in a way that would induce any other European-demography country to comply with America’s geoeconomic interests.

After all, if the Alt-Right people are going to careen all over the internet essentially screaming, “put America first ahead of your own country’s interests or be accused of White genocide”, and alternately equally absurdly, “you’re an evil Russophobe who supports White genocide if you invested in BP instead of Exxon”, then they should not expect that they are going to win the sympathy of anyone who is neither American nor Russian.

I want to say to British people, to Australians, to New Zealanders, to Canadians, Commonwealth citizens in general, that you know, it’s been a long time since you’ve taken your own side. This coming phase is going to be a time when it will become possible to do precisely that.

The time is fast approaching when it will be possible to choose neither America nor Russia. You’ll be able to finally choose yourselves and your own geoeconomic interests, and you’ll be able to choose to trade and associate with whoever else in the world you want to trade and associate with.

Kumiko Oumae works in the defence and security sector in the UK. Her opinions here are entirely her own.


Gauguin: More than one disease introduced to natives. One was not his fault but he tried to cure it.

Posted by DanielS on Tuesday, 07 March 2017 12:46.

I may have sold Gauguin short in terms of his ethnographic conscientiousness. I’d been citing him as an example of the “artistic genius” who wasn’t worth it for his moral failing. There is still a good measure of truth to that, but he may not have been quite as heinous and without effort to be considerate as I had thought in terms of concern for what is important to other people - at least those of Tahiti and their culture. My line had been that as an artist he is as satisfying as any to me, nevertheless as a man who infected who knows how many native girls with syphilis, he was a killer. His art, no matter how good, not worth that behavior.

         
                Gauguin in Tahiti: Search for Paradise (1967)

Even so, as I watch this biography, a couple of mitigating facts are revealed. True, he still would have infected at least one native girl with syphilis. However, he married her and apparently did not know that he had the disease when he infected her. Still bad, of course, as there was no effective treatment for the disease even with French civilization settled there.  Add to that his knowledge of the risks of his own promiscuity beforehand along with his ultimate abandonment of his wife and kids back in France.

 

 

However, the biography reveals that before he fell ill, he was really concerned to find and help preserve the authentic Tahitian people and culture. With that, he was dismayed by the impact of French civilization and missionaries, how they’d already by his time begun to destroy the native culture. He was particularly bothered by the imposition of Christian schooling upon the native children that had by then caused them to lose their native religion. He would actually go to the children and their parents with a French law book - reading them their rights so that they would know that they did not have to go to the missionary school. Finally, he went so far as to try to recreate their native religious stories in writing and in his paintings…


Active Measures’ RT pressures London club for enacting policy that protects its business and patrons

Posted by DanielS on Thursday, 02 March 2017 11:07.

RT, a propaganda organ of “Active Measures,” is pressuring a private London club to have open doors liberalism. Cirque le Soir nightclub in Soho has a policy standard for private clubs, of not allowing-in groups of unaccompanied males. When confronted with a group of black male athletes, a bouncer for the club apparently observed their demeanor and added what was perhaps a code-reason for discrimination - “too urban.” RT jumped all over that for being racial profiling, racial stereotyping and therefore “racist”. 

Nevertheless, if “too urban” was indeed a code word for a black group with a dangerous profile, it would merely be a practical observation and precaution to take to discriminate against them. Young black males, especially in groups (including wealthy professional athletes) are statistically far more violent; and the club was exercising what should be its right as a free and private club to deny servitude, to protect its interests and protect is clients.

The freedom of London clubs to defend not only their businesses, but their patrons against profiles known to be violent and otherwise destructive is apparently of no concern to RT and Active Measures. This is a swift route to the destruction of our native European EGI and the naive among us who lack meaningful experience of blacks in numbers.

The kind of liberal “anti-racist” propaganda that RT is engaging-in goes back to the days of The Soviet Union - it put such pressure on The US to atone for its history of slavery that it empowered liberals to destroy untold numbers of innocent Whites, attempting by their sanctioned means (The Constitution and The Golden Rule), compelled by their politicians and (((those coercing))) their politicians to force them to try to live the impossible - “Thou Shalt Not Discriminate”, “Thou Shalt Not have senses and defend yourself”, “Thou Shalt Enter into involuntary contract” - “thou” must live pure in pure servitude, fresh White prey: un-hypocritical, ideologically living-up to the pure banner of “freedom and liberty for all” - non-discrimination: this has led basically to the destruction of America - America did not win the cold war. When you cannot discriminate against blacks, you are not free and you have big problems.

“Deep ecologists” may argue that blacks are returning American cities like Baltimore, Detroit and New Orleans—the city these athletes are nominally playing for—that they are returning these cities harrowed by blacks to a “state of nature.” It is a feral state indeed: let those who advocate non-discrimination against them go and live with them.

RT’s charges of “racism”, compelling Whites and White institutions to leave themselves vulnerable to black aggression - a phenomenon that any fool would instinctively know to be on guard and discriminate against - is unconscionable. 

The Alt Right is incredibly naive as it continues to treat The Russian Federation as being in perfect alignment with White Nationalism - its great White hope even: what they are actually doing is serving as free propaganda for a very cynical Kremlin.

RT, “NFL players turned away from London nightclub for being ‘too urban”, 1 March 2017:

       

A popular London nightclub which allegedly barred a group of American football NFL stars for being “too urban” is being accused of racial profiling.

The New Orleans Saints team members had booked a table at Cirque le Soir nightclub in Soho, but said on arrival the bouncer turned them away for being “six big guys” and “too urban” – a phrase often used as a euphemism for black.

The nightclub has since denied it would turn anyone away based on ethnicity, but has a policy of not admitting all-male groups.

Mark Ingram Jr, 27, a running back, was with Sterling Moore, 27, BW Webb, 26, Vonn Bell, 22, all defensive players, and two friends when they tried to get into the club on Monday.

The players were visiting London in preparation for their game at Wembley in October against the Miami Dolphins as part of the NFL’s international series.

Mark Ingram II

@MarkIngram22

Is this what 6 big “too urban” guys look like?! @CirqueLeSoir @TheVonnBell7 @SterlingMoore @OhGi_3Dawg3 @burtleyc @Flintsbadguy #AllSmiles
2:10 AM - 28 Feb 2017

Ingram tweeted: “We pull up to Cirque le Soir where we have reservations and this is what they tell us. They told us we were ‘six big guys’ that are too ‘urban’ but nobody taller than 5’11!”

Following the tweet, the hashtag #TooUrban began trending on Twitter. Many have accused the club of racial profiling.

Suzanne @girls_with_guts

@MarkIngram22 one of the #toourban “big guys” next to my 5’7” daughter…ooooh he’s so scary. @CirqueLeSoir your moms didn’t

D @barker1980

I’m confused. This is the same place that called @MarkIngram22 #TooUrban ? https://twitter.com/cirquelesoir/status/827565983720230912
3:54 AM - 28 Feb 2017

  84 84 Retweets
  116

Chris @burtleyc

Thanks to everyone for support! Historical socioeconomic and racial prejudices still impact society. I’m from Flint, proud to be #TooUrban
10:47 PM - 28 Feb 2017

Sly Gemstone @SlyGems

Thanks to everyone who has reached out to us! Stereotyping and discrimination are real in our world. Never let anyone define you! #TooUrban
7:23 AM - 1 Mar 2017

Gillian ‘Slick’ E. @SlickEToffee

#TooUrban So are white British celebs gonna boycott @CirqueLeSoir or do they only stand up against American racism?
12:46 PM - 1 Mar 2017

The club is a favorite with US music stars including Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Kanye West, and actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

In response to criticism, a nightclub spokesperson said: “All of the team at Cirque le Soir are really upset by the suggestion that there was anything malicious in our turning away of Mark Ingram and his friends. We proudly celebrate diversity, not only as part of our shows, but as part of who we are.

“We would not dismiss anyone as ‘too urban’ and we would not turn anyone away on the basis of their ethnicity, sexuality or any other characteristic, other than those expressed in our door policy.

“Admitting an all-male group goes against our policy and is clearly stated on Facebook and all reservation confirmation emails.”


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