* Germany’s Vice Chancellor said in 14 rounds of talks neither side had agreed on a single common chapter out of the 27 being deliberated Germany’s Vice Chancellor has said free trade negotiations between the European Union and the United States have failed, but “nobody is really admitting it”. Talks over the so-called Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partner, also known …
Vince talks about his recent article for CounterPunch, why the U.S. lacks an antiwar movement and what antiwar activists could do in the future to be more effective. After ten years of working with antiwar movements around the globe, Vince has seen the many ways in which those movements limit their own productivity. Interestingly, antiwar movements ranging from Spain to Australia are facing similar difficulties.
Britain has suffered a bigger fall in real wages since the financial crisis than any other advanced country apart from Greece, research shows. A report by the TUC, published on Wednesday, shows that real earnings have declined more than 10% since the credit crunch began in 2007, leaving the UK equal bottom in a league table of wages growth. Using data …
As Jack Rasmus predicted last week, the initial scenario for the Brexit vote is not an immediately global financial crash. The threat is more intermediate than short term. The analogy is not Brexit as a ‘Lehman Brothers’ event, the US bank collapse that ushered in the financial crash of 2008-09, but more similar to a ‘Bear Sterns’ event, the US bank that collapsed in the US early in 2008. Brexit is a warning shot fired across the bow of the global capitalist economy, not the precipitating event for another crash. Jack explains how global investors are waiting to see what happens next before dropping the other shoe. Jack reviews the likely intermediate effects of Brexit on global markets—currencies, bond rates, stocks, real investment, deflation, productivity, bank lending, consumption, and GDP. The relative effects of Brexit on economic regions are also covered: the UK, EU, US, China, EMEs. Recession in the UK will occur first, Jack explains. Europe will stagnate further. Japan’s recession will deepen, the US will enter recession in 2017 soon after the elections. China eventually will have to devaluate its currency with severe global consequences—i.e. the effects of Brexit on financial markets and real economies is just beginning. Political instability in the UK, in both conservative and labor parties is reviewed, with splits deepening in both. What Brexit also means for growing political instability for France, Spain, Netherlands, and Italy; how Brexit is penetrating the US election campaigns, as US elites and corporate push back on both candidates. Jack warns the weak spots of global capital today are Italy’s banks and Japan, where the most likely next ‘Bear Stearns’ event will emerge. Longer term, the UK currency and London as global financial center are finished as global players.
Jack Rasmus interviews Alan Benjamin, eyewitness to developing events in France, where workers and students are protesting and striking against government attempts to impose by edict changes in France’s labor code that will allow corporations to fire and lay off workers more easily, undermine unions and collective bargaining, and privatize broad sectors of the French economy. Traveling to France on numerous occasions in recent months, and just returning from a week ago, Benjamin describes the growing opposition in France to the so-called ‘labor market reforms’ imposed by Presidential edict by the Hollande government there. Growing one day, rolling strikes, and spreading student-worker protests across the country are resulting in growing government violence against the protestors. Discussions are intensifying within France’s labor union federations to consider a general strike to get the government to back off of its proposed labor ‘reforms’. A recent country-wide poll in France shows 78% opposed to the reforms, as the government declares it will not back down. Jack explains how ‘labor market reform’ in France and Europe today is a reflection of similar changes in jobs occurring globally—including shift to part time, temp, contract work, offshoring and relocation of full time employment to emerging markets, shift to low pay/no benefits service work, and emerging trends like ‘gig’ economy, no pay internships, and privatization of social benefits.
Alan Benjamin is a delegate of the San Francisco Labor Council and member of the OPEIU, who works in Europe and the US. He is also a member of the US ‘Labor Fightback Network’ of unionists in the US. More information on events in France is available at www.laborfightbacknetwork.org and at www.socialistorganizer.org.
In episode 94 David interviews James Fergusson, the author of the 2007 book, “The Vitamin Murders”. The book covers the authors own concerns about contamination in his own family’s food, and Jack Drummond, who designed the British food rationing system during World War II. Some people think the restricted calorie intake, especially sugar, made this the healthiest time for the average Brit. After WW II, however, Jack Drummond, his wife, and their daughter, were murdered brutally and bloodily in the south of France, while ostensibly on holiday. But were they on holiday or on a secret mission? James Fergusson’s website is: http://www.jamesfergusson.info
After the interview, David reports on a $100 million advertising campaign for Gilead’s expensive new Hepatitis C drug, Harvoni (http://www.statnews.com/2016/03/08/harvoni-hepatitisc-ads) and a recent podcast with a man who survived Hepatitis C drugs but, when they didn’t cure his cirrhosis, worked out a natural protocol that did allow his liver to recover, to the surprise of his doctor (http://www.howpositiveareyou.com/2016/02/05/hpay-107-alistair_mackinnon).
Last month the Bank of Japan (BoJ) expanded its QE program and negative interest rates (NIRP) in a desperate attempt to reboost its stock market and Yen exchange rate. This past week the European Central Bank (ECB)went a step further, as both the ECB and BoJ continue to engage in ‘dueling QEs’ that are intensifying global currency wars and slowing global trade. ECB chairman, Mario Draghi, lowered the Eurozone’s negative rate on government bonds another notch, now to -0.4%. Reportedly half of all government bonds in Europe now trade at negative rates. In addition, the ECB raised its monthly buying amount from $66 billion to $88 billion, and now will buy corporate bonds as well. The move subsidizes Euro corporations, lowering their costs of borrowing and insurance (CDS) on bonds, a move to offload the $1.5 trillion in corporate non-performing loans in Europe. Jack Rasmus explains why this won’t have any effect on the Eurozone real economy but will temporary boost stocks and currency. Jack also reviews why global oil prices have risen recently to $40 a barrel, Japan’s official return to recession after doctoring GDP numbers last 3Q2015, China’s latest ‘mini-stimulus’, the US deepening control of Ukraine’s economy, and the significance of the ‘Socialist’ government in France new attack on eliminating the 35 hr. workweek, where 90% of all jobs created in 2015 were part time and temp, and the mass protests now emerging there. Jack concludes with brief introduction to his forthcoming May 2016 book, ‘Looting Greece: The Emergence of a New Imperialism’, and his next book out October 2016 entitled, ‘Central Bankers on the Ropes’, both from Clarity Press. (see his blog, jackrasmus.com and Clarity Press for more information).
Daniel Boulud is Chef-Owner of several award-winning restaurants and the Feast & Fêtes catering company. While he hails from Lyon, France, it is in New York that he has truly mastered the dining scene and is today considered one of America’s leading culinary authorities. Raised on his family’s farm in the village of Saint-Pierre-de-Chandieu, the chef remains inspired by the rhythm of the seasons and menus driven by fine ingredients. Since arriving in the US in 1982, Boulud has become renowned for the contemporary appeal he adds to soulful cooking rooted in French tradition.
Daniel Boulud’s New York City restaurants include his flagship DANIEL (1993), a Michelin starred Relais & Châteaux member; the elegant one Michelin star Café Boulud (1998) with its adjacent cocktail bar, Bar Pleiades; his contemporary Parisian bistro, db bistro moderne (2001); two Upper West Siderestaurant including the charcuterie-centric Bar Boulud (2008) and the Mediterranean themed Boulud Sud (2011). DBGB Kitchen and Bar (2009), situated downtown on the corner of Bowery and Houston, is chef’s relaxed restaurant where the French brasserie meets the American Tavern. Épicerie Boulud (2011), with locations across from Lincoln Center and within The Plaza Food Halls, is an eat-in and take-out market and café, with exquisite homemade and gourmet items from around the world. Beyond Manhattan the chef has created Café Boulud in Palm Beach (2003) and db bistro moderne in downtown Miami, Florida (2010). Boulud has extended his culinary reach internationally with db bistro moderne at Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands (2010), Bar Boulud London (2010) at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, Café Boulud at the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto (2012), and Maison Boulud at the Ritz-Carlton Montréal (2012). In spring 2014 the Chef returned to Las Vegas and opened db Brasserie in partnership with The Venetian® Las Vegas. Additionally, in September 2014 he opened a second DBGB at downtown Washington D.C.’s CityCenterDC, and Bar Boulud at Boston’s Mandarin Oriental.
Boulud’s culinary accolades include James Beard Foundation awards for “Outstanding Restaurant,” “Outstanding Restaurateur,” “Best Chef, New York City” and “Outstanding Chef of the Year.” He has been named “Chef of the Year” by the Culinary Institute of America and Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur by the French government. Restaurant DANIEL has been cited as “one of the ten best restaurants in the world” by the International Herald Tribune, has earned multiple Michelin stars and Wine Spectator’s “Grand Award”. In 2015 the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awarded Boulud the Diners Club® Lifetime Achievement Award for his success as a restaurateur, businessman, and ‘chef who is revered as one of the world’s finest.’ Boulud’s culinary style is reflected in nine cookbooks, including the definitive DANIEL: My French Cuisine (Grand Central Publishing, 2013) and his most recent My Best: Daniel Boulud (Ducasse Books, 2014).
Untied Tongue: Trump Speaks American Ugly With A French Accent
Democrats Troll Flint: Misery Serves As A Political Backdrop
Donald Trump, the frontrunner among Republican candidates in the 2016 presidential race, has an admirer in Jean-Marie Le Pen, founder of the far-right, trenchantly racist National Front party in France. Gilbert Mercier, editor in chief of News Junkie Post, draws parallels between the ascendancy and growing appeal of Trump and that of LePen.
At the urging of Hillary Clinton, Sunday night’s CNN-hosted Democratic “debate” with fellow contender Bernie Sanders was held in the beleaguered city of Flint, Michigan, which remains mired in a public-health disaster as the city concedes responsibility for exposing tens of thousands of residents to lead poisoning and bacterial infections from its water system. Abayomi Azikiwe, a Detroit organizer for the Workers World Party and editor in chief of the Pan-African Newswire, says Flint served as a convenient political backdrop, but substantive issues affecting its residents went missing.
Before long, your pill-pushing doctor will be replaced by a pill-pushing AI toilet that’s tag-teamed with a Terminator-style compliance android or drone. Why? Because today’s pharma-bribed doctors do almost nothing that can’t be done by a sophisticated drug vending machine owned and operated by the pharmaceutical industry. Modern doctors, in other words, are little more than robotic pill pimps who offer absolutely …