There really is no alternative – to the truth By William Bowles

22 July 2017 — investigating imperialism

But then I think, no! This can’t be so, how can life be so cruel?

But then I think, we have so little power but so much comprehension, so maybe that’s it;

Comprehend but do nothing.

This is Grenfell Tower, so much comprehension, so much understanding, so little power.

The unpacking begins. The explorations wander through mazes. We catalogue, we classify, we empathise, we explicate, we condemn, but do nothing.

The act of describing is enough. Enough is enough.

Is enough.

And as the days roll by, more explications roll by.

The tests. I laugh!

The tests a sham.

The tests begin – again.

Then bizarrely music fills my brain. Somehow, the music explains.

I hear chords, they strike a chord.

The corpses, they pile up in a strange land. Corpses are the same everywhere. And not surprisingly, the Grenfell corpses are identical to Aleppo corpses, as are Mosul corpses, are the same as the…I can’t go on.

This has to stop!

But then I think, this can’t be so.

But it is.

That woman, blonde she was, well coiffed she was. Beautiful nails, she spoke and out came shit, nothing but empty shit, and so well coiffed, but shit just the same.

How can this be so? So much is known, so little acted on.

They explicate, they analyse, they categorise, they bury us with little truths, piled up like corpses in a stairwell, each one a truth, each truth a little death.

Lots of little deaths don’t make one big death.

Perhaps the causes somehow change the end. The end becomes the beginning and in doing becomes the end.

They bury us with little truths

The truths pile up like corpses

Each corpse a truth, each truth a lie

Each lie a death

Each death a life.

St. Thomas’s Hospital, 22 July 2017

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Gangster Capitalism By William Bowles

17 July 2017 — Investigating Imperialism

Image by Julian Stallabrass via Flickr. Thank you Dandelion Salad

London has become “a desert of wealth“. Comment by a former planning officer for London heard on TV yesterday in a movie made by the BBC that managed to spend an hour on the destruction of London without mentioning capitalism once!

It’s all that ‘surplus’ cash the pirates have stolen from us (trillions) and put into luxury apartments that stand empty, monuments to greed. It’s simply an investment, a way of banking stolen wealth. It’s destroyed the London I grew up in, made a misery of all our lives, forced an estimated 200,000 people out of London, denuded entire neighbourhoods of shops, restaurants and services simply because nobody lives in them anymore, so no customers, no neighbourhood and definitely no community!

And the source of this ‘investment’ is endless, it comes from the global super rich, the 1%. It adds nothing to the wealth of society, in fact masks the reality that we are becoming poorer and poorer whilst these transnational parasites live it up in the city of my birth.

Every day, London grows to look more and more like the old Johannesburg under Apartheid capitalism, with the peons making their daily trudge into the city to serve their masters and then trudging back out again. A trudge by the way, that costs on average £3000 a year if you live outside London! A monthly travel card for bus and tube is now £135 or over £1600 a year.

The average rent for an apartment in London is now £1500 a month. In my neighbourhood, it’s £2500 a month! That’s £30,000 a year without adding in council tax, energy and transportation, or food and clothes, let alone books or movies or any kind of fun.

This is parasitical capitalism. It produces nothing and consumes everything! No wonder people think Corbyn is a Godsend, yet it’s his Labour Party that has contributed directly to this situation. Will we never learn?

 

Disastrous Capitalism – But is a Labour government the solution? By William Bowles

July 15 2017 — investigating imperialism

Class War

Consider the Grenfell Tower inferno as an expression of a new kind of class war, but not a class war as we have known it–between organised workers, political parties and capital–but between ordinary citizens and the local fiefdoms of the capitalist state as increasingly, big business has taken over the running of what’s left of our public and collective life, through ‘outsourcing’, public-private-partnerships and what have you, where making a profit is the bottom line, not serving the public.[1]

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Full Corbynism: Constructing a new left Political Economy beyond Neoliberalism

by Joe Guinan and Thomas M. Hanna

[I’m working on a followup to my previous outings on Corbyn, the Labour Party and the left, to be published shortly. I am still not convinced that Corbyn can so transform the Labour Party as to effectively make a new political formation out of it, that will, in turn lead us out of this nightmare toward real socialism but we’ll see. In the mean time, check this hymn to Corbyn out: ‘Full Corbynism: Constructing a new left Political Economy beyond Neoliberalism’. WB]

‘There are three stages’, Sidney Webb wrote in a Fabian Society pamphlet in 1890, ‘through which every new notion in England has to pass: ‘It is impossible: It is against the Bible: We knew it before’.’[1] This month’s sensational election result means that Corbynism is now rocketing toward the latter stage, consolidating its position as the new common sense on the left of British politics. Granted, Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour didn’t win. Outright victory on 8 June was never likely given the party’s weak prior standing, and would have required a seismic shift far greater than could reasonably be expected in a landscape fractured and divided by Brexit. Nevertheless, what Corbyn and his team pulled off – against all odds, and in the teeth of an overwhelmingly hostile media and continual sabotage from within – is truly remarkable. The Labour Party is now a government-in-waiting, poised for the next General Election, which could come at any time and could easily carry Corbyn into Downing Street as Prime Minister.

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Grenfell Tower: This is what Austerity looks like By William Bowles

17 June 2017 — investigating Imperialism

‘The Prime Minister, Theresa May, had to [flee] the site of Grenfell Tower yesterday under police guard, BBC News, 17 June 2017

The Abandonment of a Community

Initially, I wasn’t going to write anything on this tragedy, I figured there would be plenty of analysis as to the whys and the wherefores of a building turned into a funeral pyre but I’ve yet to see the word Austerity used once, just once, in connection with this tragedy, which as usual in this world always impacts the most on working class communities, especially the poor, wherever it occurs.

Grenfell tower 2

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To the Barricades Comrades? By William Bowles

16 June 2017 — investigating imperialism

“From nowhere, a grassroots power base of [60,000] left-wing activists overturned Blair’s 20-year “New Labour” project, which took the party into the Clintonite center ground, and ultimately to three straight general election victories, No.10 Downing Street, and government. As the leader of Britain’s main opposition, Corbyn is technically the next prime minister in waiting. This is not a trivial achievement.

“It has left his party’s establishment stunned.” –  ‘Momentum: The Inside story of how Corbyn took control of the Labour Party‘, Business Insider, March 3, 2016

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Should I vote for Corbyn? I mean Labour? By William Bowles

7 June 2017 — Investigating Imperialism

And after all the bad things I’ve said about Corbyn (here, here and here) you would think asking the question was redundant, but is it? Should I vote for Corbyn/Labour Party or perhaps abstain? What is at stake here, aside from Corbyn’s political future (and perhaps the future of the Labour Party itself)? He is after all, almost at retirement age and thrust into a position that he never asked for in the first place. Had he been ten or twenty years younger I seriously doubt whether he would have accepted the position.

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Video: Louis Moholo-Moholo and The Four Blokes @ Cafe Oto

14 April 2017

The immortal Bra Louis Moholo-Moholo. 77 years old and still striding across the planet and playing wonderful music.

20170414 214524

 Photograph by William Bowles

Louis Moholo-Moholo – drums, Shabaka Hutchings – saxophone, Jason Yarde – saxophone, Alexander Hawkings – piano, John Edwards – bass.

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