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10 Good Things About the Not-So-Great Year 2015


10 Good Things About the Not-So-Great Year 2015

Medea Benjamin

It would certainly be easy to do a piece about 10 horrible events from 2015, from the ongoing war in Syria and the refugee crisis, to the bombings in Beirut, Paris and San Bernardino, to the rise of Donald Trump and Islamophobia. But that wouldn’t be a very inspiring way to bid farewell to this year and usher in a new one. So let’s look at 10 reasons to feel better about 2015.


Medea- Thank you for all your TIRELESS efforts on behalf of peace and justice.


Re: #8 - does anyone know if the WH accepted these gifts?


Based on Nurses' Union head Roseann DeMoro and this article from Medea Benjamin, it should be clear that genuinely pro-peace, Progressive American women are not falling for Hillary--just because she is a woman.

That is a popular canard and it's often stated in this forum and across the MSM.

Intelligent people who realize that there's a phenomenal gap between actual justice, Democratic ideals, and business fair play and what's passed off as "Business As Usual" within our nation understand that Bernie Sanders speaks up about MUCH that is way off-kilter. And he's the ONLY one doing that who has any audience. Jill Stein may go further than Mr. Sanders in the way of articulating better foreign policy objectives, but she also has no real skin in the game and has never been a Washington insider.


Bravo to Medea Benjamin.
And a big shout out to Siouxrose1. You are so right on. I so often agree w/your posts.
And here's another big shout out to those BERNIE supporters who are volunteering to help BERNIE seal the nomination.
That's the big challenge for BERNIE folks--to wrest the nomination from SlickWillieShillarytheHawk who is just like the neo-cons in her love of "regime change" and tohellwiththefallout of another MiddleEast power vacuum. I'll take wisdom over experience any day--she hasn't learned a darn thing about foreign policy despite globetrotting as Sec of State.
And Bravo to BERNIE for his people's revolution!


"because we define a Canadian not by a skin color or a language or a religion or a background, but by a shared set of values, aspirations, hopes and dreams,” Trudeau proclaimed." Um, not wanting to spoil the party here, but I don't see existing Canadians as necessarily sharing the above, and so can't be defined in that way, and people coming from a different religion and background are even less likely to. And how would Trudeau know what's in their minds anyway ? By the way, this is not an anti-refugee posting, it's an anti-nonsense posting.


Yup, I always look out for Siouxrose1's posts. Very astute.


Mahalo, Medea; much-needed reminder!


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As our attention began turning to the 2016 elections, Democrats kicked off 2015 by clarifying their values and priorities -- voting to virtually end food stamps to the elderly poor and the disabled. Liberals continued their pep rally for the better-off alone, preferably the middle class, but with a pat on the head to low wage workers.. We see an increase in the popularity of anti-Jewish rhetoric, and in anti-white bigotry..America agrees that our corporate state is now so successful that everyone is able to work, there are jobs for all, therefore no need for poverty relief.

We recently revised "middle class" to a lower economic level, indicating the impact of America's deteriorating quality of life -- the inevitable consequences of our political/policy choices. 2015 was, to my knowledge, the first.time that we redefined "poor" in a way to exclude the truly poor..Overall, little has changed. We remain profoundly divided and subdivided by class and race, and pitted against each other.


Didn't Canadians follow America's example in dumping the poor, putting their faith in deregulated, unrestrained capitalism?


People's revolution? Which people, and what are they revolting for/against? What I hear today is what I've been hearing since Bill Clinton -- a meaningless pep rally for the better-off, the middle class (with a pat on the head to min. wage workers). Liberals, and Sen. Sanders, might complain about the corporate state, but without it, there would be no middle class. In fact, we so strongly believe in the success of the corporate state that we think everyone is able to work, there are jobs for all, therefore no need for poverty relief.
Who would revolt against that?


A touch of twisted conservative humor says much about the "Not-So-Great-Times We're In:"

Over five thousand years ago, Moses said to the children of Israel, "Pick up your shovels, mount your asses and camels, and I will lead you to the Promise Land." Nearly 75 years ago, (when welfare was introduced) Roosevelt said, "Lay down your shovels, sit on your asses, and light up a Camel, this is the Promised Land." Today Congress has stolen your shovel, taxed your asses, raised the prices of Camels and mortgaged the Promised Land!

I was so depressed last night thinking about Health Care Plans, the economy, the wars, lost jobs, lower wages, savings, Social Security, retirement funds, etc..... I called a Suicide Hotline. I had to press 1 for English. I was connected to a call center in Pakistan. I told them I was suicidal. They got excited and asked if I could drive a truck....
Folks, we're screwed.


It is interesting to review the past year, and Medea/Common Dream's review of the positives of the past year, for what is stated and for skeptical views (emphasis on plural) of them.

1) Iran Nuclear Deal. Could be the sort of deal that Medea and Common Dreams adores. Iran didn't agree to anything, and hasn't even signed it. It amounts to a 'fig leaf' for Obama retreating from past American hostility towards Iran. (Iran is still hostile towards the US.)

2) Renewed diplomatic relations US:Cuba. Amazing what sort of repression passes unreported when the repressor is strong left-wing anti-American and anti-'gusano'. I have heard reports that repression against the 'Women in White' has gotten worse since Obama restored relations with Cuba.

3) Keystone pipeline ain't happening (for now). Noted, and a bit irrelevant since fracking has been so successful in putting oil on the market. Recall that Common Dreams hates fracking too.

4) BlackLivesMatter. Symbols have changed. The rest is to be seen. In the meantime, BLM protesters shutting down shopping malls on Black Friday and Dec. 23rd have been Grinch-like, and perhaps also in the way that upset the Grinch. Maybe folks have learned that Christmas is about something other than presents and stuff.

5 & 6) Refugees and the Jeremy Corbyn new head of the UK Labour Party. Leave to be discussed later, but see #7.

7) Same Sex Marriage. Now Supreme Court imposed on the large number of bigots who had voted for DOMarriage in many states. Also imposed on the large number of bigoted refugees entering this country, who come from countries, and with the culture of those countries, where any one can kill a gay person.

8) BDS wins. Worth reviewing what you are wishing for, and the likelihood that you will get it. It sure sounds like the Palestinians increasingly believe in 'Death to Jews!' (Noting that Palestinians have always favored figurative 'Death to Israel & Israelis'. Now they increasingly favor it literally.)

9) Marijuana legalization. Leave to be discussed later. As a Libertarian I favor drug legalization. I also note that American ideas of 'justice' have a bad draconian tilt. As evidenced by mass and long incarceration, and public sentiment towards Ethan Couch expressed a week ago when he went missing.

10) Bernie Sanders campaign. We definitely have a short coming in presidential campaigns, and in MSM coverage. Let me suggest an idea. Bernie advocates breaking up the TBTF banks. How about we consider, advocate for breaking up Empire USA into smaller and safer pieces?