‘The Real Agenda of the Gates Foundation’ by Jacob Levich


Knowing that many of you have a similar sort of (cough) regard for Gates and other philanthrocapitalists (alternately called by the Wrong Kind of Green collective: the non-profit industrial complex) as mine, when I’d stumbled upon this more readable, searchable format of this work by Jacob Levich, it seemed that posting it as a PSA would be a good thing to do.

Levitch writes from NYC and taught at Stony Brook University; some of this may be from his thesis, iirc; but maybe his thesis was his ‘The Gates Foundation, Ebola, and Global Health Imperialism’ published in the American Journal of Economics and Sociology in 2015.  No matter, but do remember that this in-depth exposé is from 2014, so Gates’ wealth numbers have changed a lot by now ($500 billion?).

Given that there are many of his papers lassoed into one here, I’ll only quote what feels enough from a few chapters to whet your appetite to read more.  He said on March 13:  that he’s working on a new chapter on ‘Pharmaceutical colonialism and the Gates Foundation’. From rupe-india.org, some background:

“You’re trying to find the places where the money will have the most leverage, how you can save the most lives for the dollar, so to speak,” Pelley remarked. “Right. And transform the societies,” Gates replied.1

“In 2009 the self-designated “Good Club” – a gathering of the world’s wealthiest people whose collective net worth then totaled some $125 billion – met behind closed doors in New York City to discuss a coordinated response to threats posed by the global financial crisis. Led by Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and David Rockefeller, the group resolved to find new ways of addressing sources of discontent in the developing world, in particular “overpopulation” and infectious diseases.2 The billionaires in attendance committed to massive spending in areas of interest to themselves, heedless of the priorities of national governments and existing aid organizations.3

Details of the secret summit were leaked to the press and hailed as a turning point for Big Philanthropy. Traditional bureaucratic foundations like Ford, Rockefeller, and Carnegie were said to be giving way to “philanthrocapitalism,” a muscular new approach to charity in which the presumed entrepreneurial skills of billionaires would be applied directly to the world’s most pressing challenges:

Today’s philanthrocapitalists see a world full of big problems that they, and perhaps only they, can and must put right.  … Their philanthropy is “strategic,” “market conscious,” “impact oriented,” “knowledge based,” often “high engagement,” and always driven by the goal of maximizing the “leverage” of the donor’s money. … Philanthrocapitalists are increasingly trying to find ways of harnessing the profit motive to achieve social good.4

Wielding “huge power that could reshape nations according to their will,”5 billionaire donors would now openly embrace not only the market-based theory, but also the practices and organizational norms, of corporate capitalism. Yet the overall thrust of their charitable interventions would remain consistent with longstanding traditions of Big Philanthropy, as discussed below:
I: The World’s Largest Private Foundation

“Gates’ approach to charity is presumably rooted in his attitude toward democracy:
‘The closer you get to [Government] and see how the sausage is made, the more you go, oh my God! These guys don’t even actually know the budget. … The idea that all these people are going to vote and have an opinion about subjects that are increasingly complex – where what seems, you might think … the easy answer [is] not the real answer. It’s a very interesting problem. Do democracies faced with these current problems do these things well?’12

The Gates charitable empire is vast and growing. Within the US, BMGF focuses primarily on “education reform,” providing support for efforts to privatize public schools and subordinate teachers’ unions. Its much larger international divisions target the developing world and are geared toward infectious diseases, agricultural policy, reproductive health, and population control. In 2009 alone, BMGF spent more than $1.8 billion on global health projects.13

The Gates Foundation exercises power not only via its own spending, but more broadly through an elaborate network of “partner organizations” including non-profits, government agencies, and private corporations. As the third largest donor to the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO), it is a dominant player in the formation of global health policy.14 It orchestrates vast elaborate public-private partnerships – charitable salmagundis that tend to blur distinctions between states, which are at least theoretically accountable to citizens, and profit-seeking businesses that are accountable only to their shareholders. For example, a 2012 initiative aimed at combatting neglected tropical diseases listed among its affiliates USAID, the World Bank, the governments of Brazil, Bangladesh, UAE et al., and a consortium of 13 drug firms comprising the most notorious powers in Big Pharma, including Merck, GlaxoSmithKline, and Pfizer.15

II Foundations and Imperialism

When those who have aggressively established and maintained monopolies in order to accumulate vast capital turn to charitable activities, we need not assume their motives are humanitarian.21 Indeed, on occasion these ‘philanthropists’ define their aims more bluntly as making the world safe for their kind. In a letter published on the Foundation’s website, Bill Gates invokes  “the rich world’s enlightened self-interest” and warns that “[i]f societies can’t provide for people’s basic health, if they can’t feed and educate people, then their populations and problems will grow and the world will be a less stable place.”22

The pattern of such ‘philanthropic’ activities was set in the US about a century ago, when industrial barons such as Rockefeller and Carnegie set up the foundations that bear their names, to be followed in 1936 by Ford. As Joan Roelofs has argued,23 during the past century large-scale private philanthropy has played a critical worldwide role in ensuring the hegemony of neoliberal institutions while reinforcing the ideology of the Western ruling class. Interlocking networks of foundations, foundation-sponsored NGOs, and US government institutions like the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) – notorious as a “pass-through” for CIA funds – work hand-in-hand with imperialism, subverting people-friendly states and social movements by co-opting institutions deemed helpful to US global strategy. In extreme but not infrequent cases, foundations have actively collaborated in regime change ops managed by US intelligence.24

III.Gates and Big Pharma

“Guinea pigs for the drugmakers”
Despite annual revenues approaching $1 trillion, the global pharmaceutical industry has lately experienced a critical decline in the rate of profit, for which it lays most of the blame on regulatory requirements. A US think tank has estimated the cost of new drug development at $5.8 billion per drug, of which 90 per cent is incurred in Phase III clinical trials mandated by the US Food and Drug Administration and similar agencies in Europe.41 (These are tests administered to large groups of human subjects in order to confirm the effectiveness and monitor the side effects of new vaccines and other medicines.) The international business consulting firm McKinsey & Company called the situation “dramatic” and urged Big Pharma executives to “envision responses that go well beyond simply tinkering with the cost base” – primarily the relocation of clinical trials to emerging markets, where drug safety testing is seen as relatively cheap, speedy, and lax.42

It is in this specific context that BMGF’s intervention in the distribution of certain vaccines and contraceptives must be seen.  Heavily invested in Big Pharma,43 the Foundation is well positioned to facilitate pharmaceutical R&D strategies tailored to the realities of the developing world, where “[t]o speed the translation of scientific discovery into implementable solutions, we seek better ways to evaluate and refine potential interventions—such as vaccine candidates—before they enter costly and time-consuming clinical trials.”44 In plain language, BMGF promises to assist Big Pharma in its efforts to circumvent Western regulatory regimes by sponsoring cut-rate drug trials in the periphery.”

IV. A Broader Agenda

“Behind BMGF’s coordinated interventions in pharmaceuticals, agriculture, population control, and other putatively philanthropic concerns lies a broader agenda. In a recent interview Bill Gates briefly strayed off-message to warn of “huge population growth in places where we don’t want it, like Yemen and Pakistan and parts of Africa.”77 His use of the majestic plural here is revealing: in spite of much rhetoric about “empowering poor people,” the Foundation is fundamentally concerned with reshaping societies in the context of ruling-class imperatives.

“In a 2010 public lecture, Bill Gates attributed global warming to “overpopulation” and touted zero population growth as a solution achievable “[i]f we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, and reproductive health services.”94 The argument is disingenuous: As Gates certainly knows, the poor people who are the targets of his campaigns are responsible for no more than a tiny percentage of the environmental damage that underlies climate change. The economist Utsa Patnaik has demonstrated that when population figures are adjusted to account for actual per capita demand on resources, e.g., fossil fuels and food, the greatest “real population pressure” emanates not from India or Africa, but from the advanced countries.95 The Gates Foundation is well aware of this imbalance and works not to redress it but to preserve it – by blaming poverty not on imperialism but on unrestrained sexual reproduction “in places where we don’t want it.”

From Malthus to the present day, the myth of overpopulation has supplied reliable ideological cover for the ruling class as it appropriates ever greater shares of the people’s labor and the planet’s wealth.  As argued in Aspects No. 55,  “Malthus’s heirs continue to wish us to believe that people are responsible for their own misery; that there is simply not enough to go around; and to ameliorate that state of wretchedness we must not attempt to alter the ownership of social wealth and redistribute the social product, but instead focus on reducing the number of people.”96 In recent years BMGF’s publicity apparatus, exploiting Western alarm about “climate change,” has helped create a resurgence of the overpopulation hysteria last experienced during the 1970s in the wake of Paul Erlich’s bestseller The Population Bomb.97

The Gates Foundation in India: A Primer

Suniti Kumar Ghosh, 1918-2014

My thanks go out to Jacob Levich.

Gates Foundation on Twitter

See also the Gates Foundation within ‘The terrifying implications of gene drives’, Café Babylon.

Bill Gates as the Bidness Buddha, although Anthony Freda wasn’t pinging him in particular, I’d suspect.

(cross-posted from Café Babylon)

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wendy davis's picture

in the easy copy html code, but no matter; and i'd forgotten to link to the c99% version of 'the terrifying implictions of gene drives'.

but as per jacob's contention above:

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thanatokephaloides's picture

The dearth of fresh water in Yemen and the expanding Sahara in Africa is real. So is anthropomorphic climate damage. So is our ever-increasing dependence on artificial chemicals to get the world's people fed, clothed and housed. So is the ever-increasing proportion of fully employable adults who are unable to ever achieve full employment -- and this problem being most pronounced in the richest developed nations at that.

The root cause of all of these things is the fact that there are too many people. The overpopulation problem is no myth, but very real indeed.

This doesn't excuse Bill Gates and his ilk from his blatant attempt to enforce his will over millions of his fellow humans just because the latter aren't phantasmagorically rich like he is.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@thanatokephaloides

what he'd said was that climate change is not due to overpopulation and energy uses/environmental degradations of the poor in developing nations. it's very like the actual eco-socialists contend. yes, now that the planet is burning, many desertified areas are w/o water because: climate catastrophe. and that has a multitude of reasons, including western gatekeeping organisations, including bill mcKibben and rockefeller (soros too?) funded 350.org, as well as the former's funding of naomi klein, gatekeeper brand.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@wendy davis

if you'll read more carefully, what he'd said was that climate change is not due to overpopulation and energy uses/environmental degradations of the poor in developing nations.

My error. I apologize. I do recognize that a single human living in the developed world consumes more resources than a typical human living in one of the poorer countries.

And, as I said above:

This doesn't excuse Bill Gates and his ilk from his blatant attempt to enforce his will over millions of his fellow humans just because the latter aren't phantasmagorically rich like he is.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@thanatokephaloides

but i swear to dawg, if i had a dollar for every white, white, western site that touts over-population, and points to the dark uns in africa and elsewhere as the culprits, given their birth rates yanno, i'd have enough filthy lucre to see me to the end of my days.

as for water, drought, and climate catastrophe, it sure isn't the fault of the local populations in south africa or yemen that drought there is epic, as in: it's a globally made crisis. and yet assholes like gates believe 'ingenuity' (his brand, of course) is the answer, including drought resistant gmo grains, and geo-engineering (serioulsy).

but did you ever hear either gatekeeping saints klein or mckibben say that 50% of the US carbon footprint is: the military? or any of them including saint gates say: fer fuckssake, live simply so that others might live? as in: stop it with the consumer society crap? no, and gates wants all black and brown people (india) people to get educated and become good little cogs in the capitalist, market-driven world.

gates, by the by, was touting a programmable (thus hackable) birth control implant chip for those women who wanted to keep the secret for their men folk, as w/ many of the devices jacob levich mentions along the way. it's his version of 'feminism'. when african women have their own bank account, they are free!!!

sorry to rant; this stuff just pisses me purple. and he also should know that peasant small farm agriculture uses waaaaay less water than big ag, and organic forming yields more food per acre.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@wendy davis

but did you ever hear either gatekeeping saints klein or mckibben say that 50% of the US carbon footprint is: the military? or any of them including saint gates say: fer fuckssake, live simply so that others might live? as in: stop it with the consumer society crap? no, and gates wants all black and brown people (india) people to get educated and become good little cogs in the capitalist, market-driven world.

Excellent point about the US military! I'd bet the net ecological footprint of the "average American" would be a lot more like those of other developed countries if it weren't for the resources we waste trying to conquer the Planet for the likes of Bill Gates.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

Big Al's picture

@thanatokephaloides Fake Scientists, it's my opinion that there is enough water and food for the current population on the planet, and more, but the primary problem is distribution and management. Approximately 90% of the world's freshwater usage comes from agriculture and industry. Like about everything, if we managed our water resources better, stopped polluting, etc., there is enough water and therefore enough food. If we take into account our inability to contain human greed and lust for power, then ya, we're fucked no matter how many billions are on the planet.

As for employment, not sure how full employment plays into over population. There is also more than enough wealth on the planet to solve all poverty and food, water and housing problems.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@Big Al

As an accredited scientist for the Society of Fake Scientists, it's my opinion that there is enough water and food for the current population on the planet, and more, but the primary problem is distribution and management.

With fresh water, "proper management" means living where the resources we need are, like all other species do. Humans are not extremophiles, and we need to start living accordingly.

Approximately 90% of the world's freshwater usage comes from agriculture and industry. Like about everything, if we managed our water resources better, stopped polluting, etc., there is enough water and therefore enough food. If we take into account our inability to contain human greed and lust for power, then ya, we're fucked no matter how many billions are on the planet.

I do take that into account; and yes, that seriously reduces the carrying capacity of the planet.

I also consider personal access to the land as a basic human requirement and adjust accordingly. Being stacked like cordwood in huge urban apartment buildings is no way for any humans to live.

As for employment, not sure how full employment plays into over population. There is also more than enough wealth on the planet to solve all poverty and food, water and housing problems.

I'm not so sure about that. Life was easier by far -- for all of us -- when there were four billion of us and fewer (roughly 1975).
source (first graph)

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@Big Al

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Cassiodorus's picture

@thanatokephaloides The average American has an ecological footprint 42 times the size of the average Indian's ecological footprint, but go ahead and blame the Indians, because there are more of them.

Uh-huh.

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"Neither time nor cognitive decline has, however, has calmed (Biden's) blood lust or a lifelong commitment to planetary collapse." -- Jennifer Matsui

thanatokephaloides's picture

@Cassiodorus

"populationphobia" as pro-capitalist elitism

@thanatokephaloides The average American has an ecological footprint 42 times the size of the average Indian's ecological footprint, but go ahead and blame the Indians, because there are more of them.

I don't recall mentioning India at all. But now that you bring India up:

The carrying capacity is the number of people the planet can sustainably maintain in reasonable comfort.

More Indians live in intolerable poverty than there are people in the USA all told. So yes, there are too many of them (which India herself has admitted from time to time).

It's not just Western elitism.

EDIT: A couple of articles on this matter, the more strident of the two written and published in India:

India is unprepared for a near future when it will be the world’s most populous country

India intensifies population stability programme

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@thanatokephaloides

'Excerpted with the permission of Penguin Random House India from Moong over Microchips Adventures of a Techie-Turned-Farmer by Venkat Iyer.

yeppers, bill gates would be proud. of course this dude touted narneda modi's 'efforts in rural india', but please understand that aside from africa, india has been ground zero for the 'green revolution', hence vendana shiva, criticism by arundhati roy, et.al. but hey, hindu nationalist thug modi is now a hero of the western imperium after TWO charm offensive tours in amerika by tulsi gabbard. huge population to sell western shit to, and anyway, NATO wants india to be allowed in. perfect geo-location, no?.

monsanto india: OMG. don't have time to show how hideous bTcotton and many other seeds have been for agriculture there. but here's colin todhunter’s January 26, 2018 ‘Global Capitalism and Livelihoods Denied: Whipping India’s Farmers into Submission’, counterpunch

(note: this is all fine by westernized modi, and his 'cashless society')

“It is a deliberate strategy: part of the plan to displace the existing system of production with one dominated from seed to food processing to retail to plate by Western corporations. Independent cultivators are being bankrupted, land will be amalgamated to facilitate large-scale industrial cultivation and those that remain will be absorbed into corporate supply chains and squeezed as they work on contracts, the terms of which will be dictated by large agribusiness and chain retailers.

Between 300,000 and 400,000 farmers have taken their lives since 1997 and millions more are experiencing economic distress. Over 6,000 are leaving the sector each day. And yet the corporate-controlled type of agriculture being imposed and/or envisaged only leads to degraded soil, less diverse and nutrient-deficient diets, polluted water and water shortages and poor health.

In addition to displacing people to facilitate the needs of resource extraction industries, unconstitutional land grabs for special economic zones, nuclear plants and other corporate money-making projects have forced many others from the land.
Various reports have concluded that we need to support more resilient, diverse, sustainable agroecological methods of farming and develop locally-based food economies. Indeed, small farms are more productive than giant industrial (export-oriented) farms and produce most of the world’s food on much less land.

Instead, in India, the trend continues to move in the opposite direction towards industrial-scale agriculture for the benefit of Monsanto, Cargill, Bayer and other transnational players. Is this the future India needs, with a fraction of farmers left on the land, trapped on an environmentally unsustainable chemical-GMO treadmill?

While whipping farmers, tribals and the unorganised sector into submission by depriving them of their livelihoods by one way or another, India’s political elite blindly adhere to the mantra that urbanisation equals progress and look to the West, whose path to ‘development’ was based on colonialism, eradicating self-reliance and beating the peasantry into submission. There was nothing ‘natural’ or ‘progressive’ about any of it. It involved the planned eradication of peasants and rural life by capitalist interests and the sucking of wealth from places like India."

i hope you don't feel as though i'm pickin' on you, dead head; as i said, i'm passionate about this issue. it just didn't have to be this way, save for: capitalism and western imperialism.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@wendy davis

i hope you don't feel as though i'm pickin' on you, dead head; as i said, i'm passionate about this issue. it just didn't have to be this way, save for: capitalism and western imperialism.

Or, at worst, capitalism and western imperialism bullying their way into places with real population problems, forcing "solutions" on those places that are nothing of the kind!

And I'd like it noted that I think most Western nations are economically overpopulated as well. The way I see things, when the rural homesteading goes away (as it did in the USA in 1986 at the latest), the population growth needs to stop. Limitless growth of any kind is impossible on a finite planet! So I may be just a skosh biased, as someone who believes in personal landed space as a human right.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@thanatokephaloides

wish i could... economic over-population? ah, well, all of it, i reckon.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@wendy davis

i'll admit that i'm not followig your drift, wish i could... economic over-population? ah, well, all of it, i reckon.

A place is economically overpopulated when it can't keep all its able-bodied adults fully employed. This is likely to happen before Malthusian overpopulation, i.e., the inability of a place to feed, clothe, and shelter all its people because appropriate resources are too scarce.

The USA, in my humble opinion, is economically overpopulated. But, as Big Al pointed out, this may not be strictly true; we could probably have full employment and a single-breadwinner-per-family economic system if it weren't for the un-natural burdens of the greediest 0.1% on Earth and the most expensive military on Earth.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

Cassiodorus's picture

@thanatokephaloides Anyone who does any work at all, all the way down to doing the dishes, is "employed." The real question is one of what people are getting for their work.

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"Neither time nor cognitive decline has, however, has calmed (Biden's) blood lust or a lifelong commitment to planetary collapse." -- Jennifer Matsui

wendy davis's picture

@Cassiodorus

and correct. look how many words it took me to respond (smile). and yet, the various proposals for what amount to a guaranteed basic income, seem to be capitalistic traps with hidden dragons, from what my spidey senses tell me. but i guess that's a whole 'nother subject.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@Cassiodorus

Blah blah blah. Anyone who does any work at all, all the way down to doing the dishes, is "employed." The real question is one of what people are getting for their work.

Which is why I use terms like "fully employed", "single breadwinner", etc.

No one who works 40 hours a week should live in either poverty or denial of basic desires.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@thanatokephaloides

that some nations *are* vastly overpopulated, and only object to white saviors like gates and co. interfering, if i’m reading you right. they ‘interfere’ to re-make the world in what they see, or pretend to believe...is better. see, to gates, he *knows* what US education should look like, as in private charter schools, ‘waiting for superman’, and such. in the developing world, ‘educating the gurls’ is about making little capitalists for the machine, as he freely admits (not that education isn’t great in most respects). and that resources aren’t scarce, they’re just wasted, corrupted, stolen for fun and profit...and denied to the rabble classes.

but woe to them if they get educated enough to see that capitalism requires a serf class, and rebel, as a lot of the farmers, teachers in the u.s. and mexico, and lowly nurses, home health care workers, and tra la la...have done in the recent past and are doing again. i mean, think about #fight for !5: it’s nowhere close to a living wage, is it? how sad that it’s become some glorious benchmark of worker rebellion.

but the larger point is exactly that there are, or were, enough resources to feed, clothe, provided shelter for all, but the ruling classes wouldn’t allow that, could they? and fuck yeah, trump and obomba got it right: VZ IS a threat to amerikan national security, cuz ya sure can’t have the bolivarian state surviving and thriving, so the west makes war on chavez, maduro...by other means (but in the name of ‘rescuing’ starving citizens w/o medicines. but it’s okay if the palestinians suffer the same as far as the ruling class goes, isn’t it?

ask yourself how many millions in amerika are at or below the ‘official’ poverty line, how many are homeless? a hella lot of them simply couldn’t find paid work; how many of them are self-medicating w/ opioids and alcohol?

me, i take a lot of grief for it, but the peasant indigenous (in africa, as well as on turtle island) have always had it right on how to have self self-sustaining organic agriculture, and not get into the ‘green capitalism’ traps like REDD and all those fake solutions, including ‘geo-engineering’. in fact, as i’ve said before, it was reporting on the indigenous side meetings at the rio ‘sustainability conference’ (in 2012?) that nailed it all down for me.

but look; this is great:
Club des Cordeliers Retweeted Caucus99%‏ @caucus99
‘C99's wendy davis writes @ ‘The Real Agenda of the Gates Foundation’ by Jacob Levich https://shar.es/1LCRzM

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@wendy davis

you seem to be stipulating to the fact that some nations *are* vastly overpopulated,

That's correct. And it's not "some" nations, it's damn near all of them, our own (USA) included.

I admit I'm biased here. I maintain that personal landed space is a human right, which seriously reduces the maximum population of any given area. Overpopulation manifests in numerous non-Malthusian ways, from the vast majority of a country's humans having to live stacked cheek-by-jowl in overcrowded cities to ever increasing numbers of people getting paid ever less money for ever more hours of work. These things occur before actual food shortages do (Malthusian overpopulation) yet still should be considered overpopulation.

and only object to white saviors like gates and co. interfering, if i’m reading you right. they ‘interfere’ to re-make the world in what they see, or pretend to believe...is better. see, to gates, he *knows* what US education should look like, as in private charter schools, ‘waiting for superman’, and such. in the developing world, ‘educating the gurls’ is about making little capitalists for the machine, as he freely admits (not that education isn’t great in most respects). and that resources aren’t scarce, they’re just wasted, corrupted, stolen for fun and profit...and denied to the rabble classes.

Actually, I object to any so-called "saviors" who offer solutions that aren't solutions at all.

but woe to them if they get educated enough to see that capitalism requires a serf class, and rebel, as a lot of the farmers, teachers in the u.s. and mexico, and lowly nurses, home health care workers, and tra la la...have done in the recent past and are doing again. i mean, think about #fight for !5: it’s nowhere close to a living wage, is it? how sad that it’s become some glorious benchmark of worker rebellion.

The "fight for 15" being "some glorious benchmark of worker rebellion" (and very well put, by the way!) is proof positive that the USA is economically overpopulated. Even with all their powers, major capitalists weren't able to pull the shit they're pulling now when the human population of the Earth was four billion or less with USA population less than a quarter billion. A strike meant something back then, as capital couldn't count on plentiful supplies of replacement workers everywhere willing to work for nothing. They can now, with the population north of seven billion.

(h/t too, to Cassiodorus who reminded me that it's what a worker gets paid for his work that matters!)

But wage and resource dilution -- ever more people chasing what amounts to the same resource set or slightly more -- is very real. The boss classes love it, as under any market based system that means all labor gets cheaper while profits rise. For all the rest of us, it still sucks.

And limitless growth of any sort is still impossible on the one finite planet we will ever have.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@thanatokephaloides

which thoughts i'd first had about a new inter-nationalism based on desperation when i'd first learned of the advent of climate change, now in crisis. the corn belt in the midwestern US is too hot for corn? work w/ russia to grow it in trade for __. russia has outlawed all GMOs, by the by.

back in the days when i wrote at the readers diaries at TPM, i posited a way to raise revenue that might be implemented to fund moar war: a voluntary euthanasia plan with suicide benefits to go to children, lovers, dinnae matter. in my dystopic story, it was a mere $10 grand, far less than signing bonuses to join the military.

but now, i think this might be the next wave of the future. 'Scientists: 'Look, One-Third Of The Human Race Has To Die For Civilization To Be Sustainable, So How Do We Want To Do This?', via malthusian.com

“WASHINGTON: Scientists say at least 2 billion dead bodies will be burned and converted into fossil fuels.

Representing multiple fields of study, including ecology, agriculture, biology, and economics, the researchers told reporters that facts are facts: Humanity has far exceeded its sustainable population size, so either one in three humans can choose how they want to die themselves, or there can be some sort of government-mandated liquidation program—but either way, people have to start dying. ”

“"Completely up to you," Cambridge University ecologist Dr. Edwin Peters added, explaining he and his colleagues were "open to whatever." "Unfortunately, we are well past the point of controlling overpopulation through education, birth control, and the empowerment of women. In fact, we should probably kill 300 million women right off the bat."

Sources confirmed that if a death solution is not in place by Mar. 31, the U.N., in the interest of preserving the human race, will mobilize its peacekeeping forces and gun down as many people as necessary.
"I don't care how it happens, but a ton of Africans have to go, because by 2025, there's no way that continent will be able to feed itself," said Dr. Henry Craig of the Population Research Institute. "And by my estimation, three babies have to die for every septuagenarian, because their longer life expectancy means babies have the potential to release far more greenhouse gases going forward."

“Additionally, the scientists noted that in order to stop the destruction of global environmental systems in heavily populated regions, there's no avoiding the reality that half the world's progeny will have to be sterilized.

[wd here: see ‘The True Stories That Fake News Tells: The Forced Sterilization of Women’, by Julian Vigo / March 14th, 2018, dissidentvoice.org
beginning with this a third of the way down:
“So yesterday, I came upon a story which I shared on Facebook where my stream there is largely a bookmarking of stories I hope to read in the not-too-distant future. The story I posted is entitled “Big Pharma Co. Has License Suspended As Vaccine Sterilizes 500,000 Girls”...]

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@wendy davis

russia has outlawed all GMOs, by the by.

Well, there's a piece of good news!

Smile

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

wendy davis's picture

@Cassiodorus

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wendy davis's picture

& biopiracy:

“The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is the new World Bank when it comes to using finances to influence policies in agriculture. The Gates Foundation is a major funder of the CGIAR system — and through its funding, it is accelerating the transfer of research and seeds to corporations, facilitating intellectual property piracy and seed monopolies created through intellectual property laws and seed regulations. Control over the seeds of the world for “one agriculture” is Mr Gates’ target!
Since 2003, CGIAR centres have received more than $720 million from Mr Gates.
Besides taking control of the seeds of farmers in CGIAR seed banks, Mr Gates (along with the Rockefeller Foundation) is investing heavily in collecting seeds from across the world and storing them in a facility in Svalbard in the Arctic — the “doomsday vault”.
Mr Gates is also funding Diversity Seek (DivSeek), a global initiative to take patents on the seed collections through genomic mapping. Seven million crop accessions are in public seed banks. DivSeek could allow five corporations to own this diversity.” [snip]

“In the 1980s, Monsanto led the push for GMOs and patents on life. Today it is Bill Gates. One rich individual is able to use his wealth to bypass all international treaties and all multilateral governance structures to help global corporations grab the biodiversity and wealth of peasants by financing unscientific and undemocratic processes like DivSeek, and trying to unleash untested technologies like CRISPR.”

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@wendy davis that taken with either Gates or Jobs. I live near Gates I believe, not very far away and I always wonder when I see helicopters overhead who's going to Medina today. Gag. Pretty sure I saw a POTUS candidate go overhead with a Chinook taking the limo. One friend worked for MS until he burned out but left with some money. Another tried working there and simply hated it, went right back to her old job within a month or so.

Talk about a megalomaniac, he wants to own all the very essences of life while bitching and moaning about those who own the means of our polluting lifestyle here - although we don't hear all that much climate championing from the likes of him either. The rest of the world just needs to stand down and let Wonderful Exceptional America and her billionaires figure out how we all live our lives. Sickening.

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Only a fool lets someone else tell him who his enemy is. Assata Shakur

wendy davis's picture

@lizzyh7

cripes, he's such a god that his foundation has its own bloody tab at the guardian! just look at the white man savior (#feminist™™) virtue-signaling essays on it today!

only deviation to the norm is a report on 'Bono’s anti-poverty campaign faces claims of harassment'; Former employees at musician’s One Campaign allege they were ‘treated worse than dogs’

he gates and the g-8 whatever year (i could look it up if ya wanted) were earnestly trying to bio-wreck africa. ghana is one nation that's still fighting back, as per blogger crossed-crocodiles, a true saint.

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Meteor Man's picture

Join POLITICO Playbook co-authors Anna Palmer and Jake Sherman for a Playbook Interview with Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The wide-ranging conversation will include a discussion of the Gates Foundation’s priorities for 2018, the role of U.S. leadership in global health and development, and news of the day.

This was St 5:00 a.m. PST, but here are some excerpts and the full 48 minute interview (nsfw):

https://www.politico.com/live-events/2018/03/15/playbook-interview-with-...

(No. I did not watch it)

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"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

wendy davis's picture

@Meteor Man

nope, it should be instead bill gates first!

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Amanda Matthews's picture

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I'm tired of this back-slapping "Isn't humanity neat?" bullshit. We're a virus with shoes, okay? That's all we are. - Bill Hicks

Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. - Frank Zappa

wendy davis's picture

@Amanda Matthews

can i add assholes on parade?

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@wendy davis great song.

Stop These Fucking Wars

peace

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Ya got to be a Spirit, cain't be no Ghost. . .

Explain Bldg #7. . .

wendy davis's picture

@Tall Bald and Ugly

on morning edit: peace to you, and solidarity. i finally twigged that your message might not have been part of the 'tag line quotes' or whatever they're called here. they take some getting used to for an olde crone brain, arrrgh.

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Amanda Matthews's picture

@wendy davis @wendy davis

‘betters’ would say.

EDIT: say dammit. SAY.

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I'm tired of this back-slapping "Isn't humanity neat?" bullshit. We're a virus with shoes, okay? That's all we are. - Bill Hicks

Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. - Frank Zappa

wendy davis's picture

@Amanda Matthews

so i'll bring both of these from commie hip-hop rapper boots riley and the coup:

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EdMass's picture

what else is there to do?

Be G-d?

Why the f not? Whose gonna say boo.

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Prof: Nancy! I’m going to Greece!
Nancy: And swim the English Channel?
Prof: No. No. To ancient Greece where burning Sapho stood beside the wine dark sea. Wa de do da! Nancy, I’ve invented a time machine!

Firesign Theater

Stop the War!

wendy davis's picture

@EdMass

but yes, control the food, control the world. well, kissinger said the water, but...that, too. how much water in acquifers has big ag drained and poisoned? a hella lot.

and gates wants to control education and innovation tech to equip african women farmers to check weather and market conditions (srsly, he featured that a bit ago; the photo was priceless as all giddy-up).

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EdMass's picture

I provide Dennis Leary

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Prof: Nancy! I’m going to Greece!
Nancy: And swim the English Channel?
Prof: No. No. To ancient Greece where burning Sapho stood beside the wine dark sea. Wa de do da! Nancy, I’ve invented a time machine!

Firesign Theater

Stop the War!

wendy davis's picture

@EdMass

still laughin', edMass. learly as patton: formidable! kapow! we got da nukes!

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@EdMass fuckin' guy slays me every time! Thanks, Man!

Stop These Fucking Wars

peace

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Ya got to be a Spirit, cain't be no Ghost. . .

Explain Bldg #7. . .

Amanda Matthews's picture

@EdMass

I really like Denis Leary.

You could turn that song into our national anthem.

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I'm tired of this back-slapping "Isn't humanity neat?" bullshit. We're a virus with shoes, okay? That's all we are. - Bill Hicks

Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. - Frank Zappa

mhagle's picture

and all the comments.

Pretty much agree with everyone.

Smile

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Marilyn

"Make dirt, not war." eyo