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How Capitalism is Cheating Young Americans | Nation of Change

Our country’s wealthy white once-idealistic baby boomer generation has cheated those of you entering the working world. A small percentage of us have taken almost all the new wealth since the recession. Our Silicon Valley CEOs have placated you with overpriced technological toys that are the result of decades of American productivity, but which have mainly profited the elite members of their industries.

Although none of us in the older generations can speak for you, we can help you research the facts. And the facts are painfully clear.

1. You Have Very Little Savings to Pay Your Massive Debts

A recent report claims that median net worth for the millennial generation (18 to 35 years old) has risen from $9,000 to $32,000 since 2007, and that their median income is $47,000.

Most other sources disagree. A report from the Russell Sage Foundation concludes that all American households have lost wealth since 2007. Other evidence shows that about 90% of us lost wealth in the past five years, while the richest - and generally older - 5% made millions. Median income, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is only about $35,000 for 25- to 34-year-olds, and just $25,000 for 20- to 24-year-olds.

Debt is apparently the difference, and the unrelenting burden, for college-educated young people. Based on Pew research, college-educated student debtors have twice as much debt as income. And they have only one-seventh the net worth of college-educated adults who have no student debt obligations.

2. You’re Being Cheated out of the Opportunity to Begin Your Own Households

As you were entering the working world after the recession, almost 60 percent of the new jobs were low-income ($7.69 to $13.83 per hour). The number of college grads working for minimum wage doubled in just five years.

As a result, many of you are forced to live with your parents. In just one generation, the percentage of stay-at-home young adults has risen from 11 percent to almost 24 percent. And more disturbingly, student homelessness increased by 10 percent in just one year.

3. Corporations are Hoarding Money that Could Pay for Your Jobs

Corporations more than doubled their profits and halved their taxes from 2000 to 2012.

What have they been doing with all that money? Hoarding it, mostly. David Cay Johnston estimated that in 2013 American businesses held almost $7.9 trillion of liquid assets worldwide. And here’s a bigger insult: According to the Wall Street Journal, for some of our largest corporations over 75 percent of the cash owned by foreign subsidiaries is kept “at U.S. banks, held in U.S. dollars or parked in U.S. government and corporate securities.”

So they’re using taxpayer money to protect the assets that they’re avoiding taxes on.

Corporations are also spending trillions of dollars on stock buybacks, which use potential research and development money to pump up the prices of executive stock options. Apple, one of the buyback leaders, and the nation’s biggest tax avoider, defended its outsourcing, saying ”We shouldn’t be criticized for using Chinese workers. The U.S. has stopped producing people with the skills we need.”

Meanwhile, corporations continue to cut jobs, with the computer industry among the worst offenders at the start of 2014.Microsoft just announced the deepest cuts in the firm’s 39-year history. AT&T has reduced its workforce by 22 percent in the last seven years. Verizon is shutting down customer service centers. Apple has a more efficient way of undermining workers, earning$400,000 profit per employee while paying most of their store workers $12 to $14 per hour.

4. The Business Media Mocks You

With supreme condescension, the media looks down at a struggling class of young Americans and proclaims:

—-The good news is that information technology provides the iPod/Facebook generation with the means to find work and create careers.. —Michael Barone, the Washington Examiner

—-A lot of people…can still earn a good living now by building their own branded reputations.. —Thomas Friedman, the New York Times

—-The ability to so take photographs makes [people] richer. —Forbes

To the out-of-touch super-rich capitalists, those of you in the newest working generation thrive on social networking, good reputations, and picture-taking. A nice lifestyle, as long as you don’t have to support yourselves or your families.

Is this why no one will hire me? I really feel like people use my resume to wipe their desks after an expensive sushi place.


Resistance is justified when Gaza is occupied
July 29, 2014

As the world reels in horror at mounting Palestinian deaths in Gaza, the Israeli propaganda machine and its willing accomplices in the U.S. mainstream media have issued their customary reply: Blame Hamas.

Speaking with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer,Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu placed all responsibility for Palestinian deaths on Hamas:

We’re sad for every civilian casualty. They’re not intended. This is the difference between us. The Hamas deliberately targets civilians and deliberately hides behind civilians. They embed their rocketeers, their rocket caches, their other weaponry which they use to fire on us in civilian areas.

What choice do we have? We have to protect ourselves. So we try to target the rocketeers. We do. And all civilian casualties are unintended by us, but intended by Hamas. They want to pile up as many civilian dead as they can…They use telegenically dead Palestinians for their cause.

Netanyahu presents Israel as innocently defending itself—and Hamas as inviting Palestinian deaths for propaganda purposes. He then goes on to call Hamas “genocidal terrorists,” stating that they “call for the destruction of Israel, and they call for the killing of every Jew wherever they can find them.”

Thane Rosenbaum, a senior fellow at NYU School of Law, went even further in his July 21 Wall Street Journal op-ed article. Rosenbaum explained that it’s impossible to kill “innocent civilians” in Gaza…because all of Gaza is guilty:

[In 2006], the people of Gaza overwhelmingly elected Hamas, a terrorist outfit dedicated to the destruction of Israel, as their designated representatives…Surely they must have understood on election night that their lives would now be suspended in a state of utter chaos. Life expectancy would be miserably low; children would be without a future. Staying alive would be a challenge, if staying alive even mattered anymore…

On some basic level, you forfeit your right to be called civilians when you freely elect members of a terrorist organization as statesmen, invite them to dinner with blood on their hands and allow them to set up shop in your living room as their base of operations. At that point, you begin to look a lot more like conscripted soldiers than innocent civilians. And you have wittingly made yourself targets.

This reasoning isn’t confined to avowedly conservative publications like the Journal. Bob Dreyfuss, writing for The Nation, made the liberal version of the argument in an article titled “The Palestinians Must Put an End to Suicidal Hamas.” He directs his outrage not at Israel for its genocidal actions, but at Hamas’ “idiotic decision to fight Israel by firing useless missiles against unseen Israeli targets.”

Those who stand for self-determination for the Palestinian people shouldn’t help Israel make its case for shedding Palestinian blood. We should be challenging Israel’s various alibis for its killing fields in Gaza—and that means setting the record straight about Hamas.

Israel claims that if only Hamas were to stop firing rockets, accept a ceasefire and recognize Israel, it would stop bombing Gaza.

But Hamas did precisely that in the year and a half following the November 2012 ceasefire that ended Operation Pillar of Cloud, as Israel dubbed its last rampage through Gaza. In 2013, “Israel had one of the quietest years, if not the quietest year, it had had since rockets started coming from Gaza, which, by the way, began before the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza in the fall of 2005,” Nathan Thrall, a senior analyst at the International Crisis Group, told Democracy Now!

Between November 2012 and today, it was Israel, not Hamas, that more frequently—and far more lethally—violated the terms of the ceasefire, as an infographic at shows. During this time, Israel continued to carry out air strikes against whatever targets it deemed legitimate, and Israeli snipers fired on—and killed—farmers if they strayed too close to the Israeli-designated “buffer zone” along the Gaza-Israel border. The terms of the ceasefire also stipulated that Israel would lift its blockade of Gaza—which instead intensified, especially after the Egyptian military took over power after toppling Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Morsi a year ago.

So why don’t the Palestinians employ nonviolent resistance, as so many liberal commentators implore?

The answer is that they do—but Israel, the media and the rest of the world routinely ignore these popular struggles. As Patrick O’Connor explained at

The fact that thousands of Palestinians and hundreds of Israelis are together employing nonviolent tactics similar to those of the U.S. civil rights movement and the South African anti-apartheid movement would come as surprising and welcome news to most Americans. Americans are largely unaware of the struggling but vibrant grassroots nonviolent movement in Palestine, because the U.S. corporate media prefers a simple, flawed story of Palestinian terrorist attacks and Israeli retaliation.

Similarly to U.S. civil rights activists, Palestinians must face tear gas, stun grenades and even live ammunition to take part in such resistance, but still they courageously do.

The nonviolent movement is based in the West Bank because that’s where it’s possible to employ such tactics in confrontations with Israeli security forces. In Gaza, which is hermetically sealed off from the rest of the world by Israel’s total control over all air and sea access—and by Egypt’s collaboration with Israel to keep Gaza’s borders closed—there is no way to engage Israel by nonviolent means. Gaza is an open-air prison, and getting too close to the bars means death by an unseen sniper, a navy boat or a drone.

Full article

on silencing the discourse on patriarchy within muslim communities



I want activist communities to complicate their ideas about Islam and Islamophobia.

The response to the Western neocolonialist, Orientalist, patriarchal, and racist idea that “Muslim women need to be saved” (by white people) is overwhelmingly the opposing claim that, “Muslim women are not oppressed!”

I think that’s a silly, infantile and oversimplified response that silences the problems of abuse, violence, manipulation, and policing of women within the Muslim community. Those of us who speak out about Muslim men who are abusing, disrespecting, and dehumanizing Muslim women are then made to feel that we’re “breaking the community,” because we need to put up a united front against Islamophobia/anti-Islamic racism. Newsflash: patriarchy and misogyny really do exist in Muslim spaces. Patriarchy and misogyny are Muslim problems. They are Islamic problems. PATRIARCHY AND MISOGYNY EXIST EVERYWHERE.

And this whole idea that Islam has no faults when it comes to gender - there are plenty of Muslim women with issues about Islam’s treatment of women. Anger about always having to pray behind men? Legitimate. Anger about always having to follow male imams? Legitimate. Anger about not having any woman prophets? Legitimate. Anger about all the Shari’ah laws that disadvantage women? Legitimate. Anger about Islamic constructions of women’s sexuality as fitnah, thus creating the need for hijab? You guessed it, LEGITIMATE.

And you know what else is legitimate? The anger that we Muslim women are barely if EVER at ALL given the resources to understand, deconstruct, contextualize, re-interpret any of this.

It also goes back to Muslim spaces being shaming of those who are asking these questions, as if asking the questions is not honoring the faith. Like, think critically about who the Muslim women are that are saying that Muslim women aren’t oppressed, and what kinds of privileges they have that enable them to say that. What about all the Muslim women who come home to hide from their husbands? Who never come to Jummah anymore because they’re sick of being second class citizens in the mosque? Whose freedom of dress and expression of sexuality is curtailed by judgmental and sometimes violent Muslim families and communities? And I’ve seen all of this bullshit justified as “part of Islam” or part of Hadith or Quranic guidance.

And this also goes out to all the Muslim AND non-Muslim movement people who get all excited about yelling about how Muslim women are not oppressed. Like, do you know anything about Islam? Have you thought critically about Islam and women? Did you know that the hijab originated as a class marker in a highly stratified society? COMPLICATE EVERYTHING.

Muslim women sure as hell are oppressed. And so are all women, and all people of color. When white people want to come colonize our bodies/spaces/places to save Muslim women, I say FUCK NO, but I will not deny the various ways in which Muslim women are oppressed. We need to say “MUSLIM WOMEN CAN SAVE THEM/OURSELVES” instead of wildly and absurdly claiming that Muslim women aren’t oppressed.

God bless who ever wrote this.



a quick comic on accountability. sometimes it is important to disassociate yourself from patriotism and realise when you are contributing to the suffering of others. 

the names of the martyrs listed in panels 23, 24 and 25 are as follows:

[panel 24]
1. Mohammed Shaaban, 24
2. Ahmed Shaaban, 30
[panel 23]
24. Abdel Hadi Jamaat al-Sufi, 24
25. Naifeh Farjallah, 80.
26. Abdel Nasser Abu Kweek, 60
27. Khaled Abu Kweek, 31
28. Mohammed Areef, 13
28. Amir Areef, 10
30. Mohammed Malakiyeh, 18 months old
31. Hana Malakiyeh, 27
32. Hatem Abu Salem, 28
33. Mohammed Khaled al-Nimri, 22
34. Sahar Hamdan, 40
35. Ibrahim Masri, 14
36. Mahmoud Nahid al-Nawasra
37. Mohammed Khalaf al-Nawasra, 4
38. Nidal Khalaf al-Nawasra al-Meghazi, 5
39. Salah Awwad al-Nawasra al-Meghazi, 6
40. Aisha Nijm al-Meghazi, 20
41. Amal Youssef Abdel Ghafour, 27
42. Ranim Jawde Abdel Ghafour, an 18-month-old girl
43. Rashid al-Kafarneh, 30
44. Ibrahim Daoud al-Balawi, 24
45. Abdel Rahman Jamal al-Zamli, 22
46. Ibrahim Ahmad Abideen, 42
47. Mustafa Abu Mar, 20
48. Khalid Abu Mar, 23
49. Mazen Farj al-Jarbah, 30
50. Marwan Slim, 27
51. Hani Saleh Hamad, 57
76. Omar al-Fyumi, 30
77. Abdullah Ramadan Abu Ghazzal, 5
78. Ismail Hassan Abu Jamah, 19
79. Hassan Awda Abu Jamah, 75
80. Mohammed Ahsan Ferwanah, 27
81. Yasmin Mohammed Mutawwaq, 4 
82. Mahmoud Wulud, 26
83. Hazem Balousha, 30
84. Nour Rafik Adi al-Sultan, 27
85. Ahmad Zaher Hamdan, 24
86. Mohammed Kamal al-Kahlout, 25
87. Sami Adnan Shaldan, 25.
88. Jamah Atieh Shalouf, 25
89. Bassem Abdel Rahman Khattab, 6
90. Abdullah Mustafa Abu Mahrouk, 22
91. Anas Rizk Abu al-Kas, 33
92. Nour Marwan al-Najdi, 10
93. Mohammed Mounir Ashour, 25
94. Ghalia Deeb Jabr al-Ghanam, 7
95. Wasim Abd al-Rizk Hassan al-Ghanam, 23
96. Ra’ed Hani Abu Hani, 31
97. Shahraman Ismail Abu al-Kas, 42
98. Mazen Mustafa Aslan, 63

[panel 25]

998. unknown
999. unknown 
1000. unknown

(at the time of writing this comic, the list of victims was at 1000. it has now surpassed that number. the full list is here).

no politics, just regular human stuff. 

yeah so here’s a thing 

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