Letters from our readers

On Obama administration collecting phone records of tens of millions of Americans

Dealing with this latest piece of news about electronic surveillance by the federal government requires us to confront a sickening and unnerving reality. The program the Guardian revealed cannot possibly be aimed at foreign terrorist threats. The sheer amount of data the NSA is collecting renders “culling” or analyzing it for evidence of activity by specific terrorist groups physically impossible. At this point there is only one viable explanation. The government is deeply concerned about civil unrest within the US in the event of another financial crisis similar to the events of 2007-2009.

One of the provisions of the Dodd-Frank bill prohibits the federal government from using taxpayer dollars to fund another bailout of “too big to fail” (TBTF) financial institutions. When the next crisis hits therefore the government will have no alternative but to pursue a Cyprus type rescue of TBTF organizations. This means raiding small depositors’ bank accounts to finance a bailout. Popular protests and a sharp backlash occurred against the Cypriot government. The current NSA program would provide the federal government (or at least certain components of it) with advance warning of any potential popular movement against such a bailout.

Those components of the federal government opposed to such a movement could then mobilize resources to quickly; quietly, and “cleanly” eliminate it and its leaders. Look at the relationship between the Chamber of Commerce and the military junta that ran Guatemala in the early 1980s and the death squads they employed to murder opponents of the existing political and economic system.


Peter L
Connecticut, USA
7 June 2013


And be sure to add to your list of FBI cover-ups since 9/11/2001 the FBI covering up the DOD/CIA origins of the anthrax attacks in October 2001. See my book Biowarfare and Terrorism (2005). The retiring FBI Director Mueller was also the architect of the cover-up of the Lockerbie bombing, blaming Libya instead of whoever the real culprits were. See my book Destroying Libya and World Order (2013), I would recommend your readers have a look at Swearingen, FBI Secrets (Southend Press). There the author, a retired and decorated FBI agent, repeatedly calls the FBI “an American Gestapo.” The FBI/CIA also put me on all the US government’s terrorist watch lists when I refused to become an informant for them on my Arab and Muslim clients. Q.E.D.

Francis Boyle
8 June 2013

On US Sgt. Robert Bales pleads guilty in Kandahar massacre

The WSWS carries on the important tradition I’ve seen in Trotsky’s writings (I recall Problems of Everyday Life), to view events like this with perspective and humanity and without waving the bloody shirt and demanding revenge. I am no apologist for this and I am fearful that Bales may very well be pardoned as was Lt. William Calley who helped carry out the My Lai massacre in Vietnam. But the WSWS kept its head when everyone else was losing theirs or, worse yet, while others only offered apologies without perspective.

Well done, WSWS. I am proud to be able to share this article with my friends.

Warren D
U.S. Army 1966-68
8 June 2013

On Once again, on the filthiness of the makers of Zero Dark Thirty

Very well reported, David. A defense of the methods of a decayed class, using art as the medium to appeal to conflicting emotions of a public that is trying to come to terms with the deterioration of democracy—this is how I interpret the movie.

9 June 2013

On Daft Punks Random Access Memories

I’ve listened to Daft Punk before, but this was a very pleasant surprise. A much softer, more melodic approach that is still very much Daft Punk. And the review was what inspired me to listen to this music again, and with a critical ear. Well done.

Bryan D
8 June 2013

On The Ford closures, the market and the fight for socialism

I love the ease with which you work the complex and seemingly abstract instruments of Karl Marx’s masterpieces into the flesh-and-blood reality of capitalist economies, [which are] failing before the eyes and falling over the heads of the workers before whom you placed yourself as a candidate. Friedrich Engels, Leon Trotsky and Rosa Luxemburg, among many others of their circle, were also masters at delivering to workers Karl Marx’s thought on economics in the most vivid language, bringing to an almost sensual perception (I see) what was taking place in their own time.

It is especially difficult even in a time of crisis to bring to life as forms of reality such scientific conclusions and the method which brings them forth as the “falling rate of profit” and “ surplus value”. So tracing the “laws of motion” of the capitalist order must have been painful to uphold at the conclusion of the last century when, contrary to scientific laws and common sense, the fairy tale was proclaimed and widely accepted by Left and Right of the time, increasingly indistinguishable, how with the fall of the Soviet Union, history would end forever and ever, capitalism in its most degraded forms ruling the earth as naturally as the air we breathe and the sun over our heads.

As the song has it, “See, see rider/See what you done done.” Who now cites Ernest Mandel whose silly-billy impressionistic economics was the last word on every issue and on every lefty’s shelf, it seemed. I am especially impressed by the absence in all your writings of the bombast which is characteristic of the Left all over the world, once mockers and re-writers of Marx, now grown bewildered and hysterical with the convulsions which finds them in their historical place, in the trenches of the extreme Right.

In this connection, I appreciate especially your evoking an important element of Marx’s thought and a source of his great optimism, that there can be no crisis of this magnitude without the material means for its resolution dialectically present. I was profoundly affected by Marxism explained properly in the sixties/early seventies, a time of apparent prosperity and economic optimism when Karl Marx was a laughing stock for his “breakdown theory” of capitalism, nasty time; I came across then an abridged version of Karl Marx’s Das Capital carrying as an introduction by Leon Trotsky an essay about what America would look like after a proletarian revolution.

Trotsky showed convincingly at the height of Depression suffering when he was writing how the enormous resources that are misdirected, distorted and lying idle could resolve basic social needs the world over. I read predicted later in the unfinished volume three of Capital the bloody rule of finance capital disconnected from the profit cycle of production and from reality itself. Your address to the workers brings Volume Three ’s scientific laws vividly to life. I am a great admirer.

Toronto, Canada
7 June 2013