Category Archives: Ventures

I’m having a little issue with consumerism/marketing

As is everybody. I don’t watch TV very attentively. But it’s still there and a loving God in His infinite wisdom and mercy somehow neglected to give me earlids, so I can’t insulate myself from it and still remain in modern society. Who in the world now has not seen that lizard representation of an insurance company? Just for instance. They’re branding us. and that’s their exact word for it. When I was a kid branding was usually an exclusive term about livestock. Branding a calf is your way of declaring ownership.

My short time working at an advertising company, just doing the trained monkey work, like putting cans of soda on doors in the midst of the Cola Wars of the 1980s (we had a contract with a very large conglomerate which among other other things involved a streetcorner table exhibit with cans of two competing brands of soda called “Take the BLEEEP Challenge”) changed my perspective away from Madison avenue which I never saw and Wall Street which I also never saw…

See, that soda pop promotion was the one time in the company’s history in which the workers were required to wear advertising.
And the rest of the time we were forbidden. Concert Tee Shirt? Sports Team Logo? Unpaid advertising. The company was PAID to advertise, right down to those of us who put grocery store weekly ads on doors.

You might love the team or band a whole lot, but the fact is that shirt is YOU paying THEM to work for them in their advertising campaign. In most jobs it’s the other way around, you get paid for your work. Even in sub-minimum wage contract work. How about a national or local Don’t Work For Free Day, wherein each participant refuses to wear advertising (and yeah, that includes shirts and pants with a tag or even a large print of the manufacturers name on them).

Take it further, don’t talk about your favorite band or TV show or sports team (which is really revenue generating entertainment, not an actual contest of skill) or supporting the Army or any other Corporate Government entity. Try, for just one day.

Fat chance any corporate information (buy our products) medium or media will let anybody know it’s happening. (buy our products damn it)
This is an example of the struggle of actual social activism, writ small.

So the seeds are planted. Let’s see if anything grows, other than the corporate weeds.

Right Wing “lone wolf” murderers

Their Whoremasters like Sarah Palin and the rest of the DumFox crew still refuse to admit that they urge people to KILL (they have to have other people do it because they’re too frightened to murder people themselves). Usually it’s male wannabee hitmen like Jared Loughner, Jim Adkisson, von Brunn, Scott Roeder, Tim McVeigh, Terry Nichols, Erik Rudolf, Local Retard Gary Faulkner and the occasional physically female like Babykiller Shawna Forde, and they have a few other things in common.
They’re usually part of local cults, not exactly “lone wolf” like the Right Wing Hate Media claim. They usually go after people they consider weaklings. And they perceive their Fox News Whoremasters to be speaking literally when they rant and rave and foam at the mouth about a “War” against any form of Non-Fox Thought. Like Sarah Palin urging her demented Disciple Jared Loughner to murder 6 people in Tucson. Lou Dobbs urging Shawna Forde and her crew to Murder (yet another) nine year old American Child. If Gary Faulkner had succeeded in killing some Pakistan citizens, most likely including children, in his Rambo-inspired fantasy quest to take out the ALREADY DEAD Osama bin Laden, who among the Hate-Mongers would take the credit for sending yet another Hate-Filled Wannabee Holy Warrior/Crusader to MURDER HUMAN BEINGS for their political agenda?
The Freakin’ Bureau of Incompetence practically admitted that bin Laden is dead. They published a “wanted poster” that had Somebody Else As The Picture and said as their excuse that nobody has any verified pictures of Osama bin Laden since 2002. So how would the dumbass even know if the Fellow Child Of God who he would end up murdering was actually bin Laden?

There’s a growing consensus, just not among the Right Wing Hate Media, and their really Stupid Cult, that Osama bin Laden is largely a creation of the Warmongers, a boogyman set up to draw heat away from the real players.
And that he isn’t alive today. According to his “profile” and the Hate-Wing Media sure does love them some profilin’, say there should be MORE profiling, usually on Racial lines… (but they’re not racists at least according to themselves) he’s a glory hound. A narcissist. (like the dumbshits the DumFox crew turns loose on Usually American Targets) who thrives on media attention, playing center stage, a ham, always wanting the spotlight. He would play Juliet if he couldn’t get the role of Romeo, just to guarantee the star credits.
Somebody who wouldn’t go nine years without having his picture taken and published and verified.

That doesn’t prove the theory that he was an actor hired by the War Industry to provoke a war which is paying them very handsomely.
It goes a long way toward debunking the purism and dogma that passes for “information” from the so-called authorities. “Thou Shalt Not Question Fox News, for they are Holier than thou”
Speaking of “Dog”ma, and socially retarded trailer trash, “Dog” the Bounty Hunter said last summer that he could deliver Osama bin Laden within 6 weeks.
Wouldn’t HIS Whoremasters actually want him to deliver on such a project? Or would it be too high profile a guaranteed failure for them?

iN line for the iPhone

As one who doesn’t like to leave the house, I am a big fan of the internet. In truth, I can hardly speak a negative word about it. The web has given us unfettered access to news and information, consumer goods, visions pleasing to the eye, sounds pleasing to the ear, easy communication one step removed. I can’t say I miss a single thing about the “good ol’ days.” Except waiting in line for concert tickets.

I love live music. I’ve been to zillions of concerts. In fact, I am going to a 2-day concert event in Denver this weekend. The headliners are Tom Petty and the Dave Matthews Band (woot! woot!). Over the years I’ve seen the Stones, the Who, the Grateful Dead, Elton John, Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd, Bruce Springsteen, James Taylor, Michael Jackson — the list goes on and on. And, so I don’t date myself too closely, I’ve even seen ‘N Sync and James Blunt.

Raised in an environment of easy internet access, my poor darling children have never had to stand in line for anything. Until last week when the new iPhone was to be released. After I made the big mistake of describing the many reasons I was considering an iPhone purchase, they decided that their future health and happiness was predicated on having 16GB iPhones. With no advice from me, they decided that they had to get to the store very early or risk failure.

They got to the AT&T store at 1 a.m. They were 22nd and 23rd in line. By the time Eric and I arrived shortly before 8, there were 100 people in line. There were camping chairs and coolers, even a gas grill. Decks of cards, pop cans and water bottles, fast food litter. I imagine there were a few dead soldiers (uh, empty beer containers) although I didn’t see any. The atmosphere was convivial. The camaraderie palpable.

They allowed people into the store 6 at a time. As each lucky buyer emerged, a bright orange AT&T bag signaling victory, their fellow consumers clapped and yelled in celebration.

We (read: they) left with our iPhones at 8:30. I later read that they’d sold out in 40 minutes — many campers went home empty-handed. But my two lucky ducks were thrilled with their phones, made all the more precious by the procurement experience.

Is the Green Party still alive?

Cynthia McKinney for PresidentIt is political suicide to run a political party the way the Greens run themselves. Are they still alive at all?

This Sunday there will be debate in California that may very well answer that question. It is very late and too little at this point IMO. The Greens have themselves to blame for allowing the Democratic Party to infiltrate their campaign and then dismantle it as their candidate Cobb did with his candidacy in 2004. Nothing afterwards has much put the party back together again. They are essentially a political Humpty- Dumpty that has taken a great fall.

Why Green Party is Dead, Dead, Dead

Four years ago, the US socialist Left was awash in hope for finally finding some cheap breakthrough to out flanking the 2 corporate political parties. They had decided that the Green Party was the road to Nirvana for them, and thought that this sad electoral vehicle might somehow be used to disassemble DP-voting liberals away from their cherished fetish, the Democratic Party.

Their hopes were based solely on their own desires, ignoring the reality that Democratic Party based liberalism still maintained complete ideological and organizational control over the Green Party bureaucracy at the top. Ralph Nader tried his best by refusing to go along with gluing the Green Party to merely helping elect another Democratic Party president. The official Green Party candidate, David Cobb, did the opposite, and ran a non-campaign for US president which completely set back the Greens chances of ever making any political impact at all.

This was what the Democratic Party wanted for the Green Party to do. By that time many card carrying liberals now just wanted The Green Party to just go away entirely, and David Cobb was the man to accomplish that. The Green Party under his wing set out like bulldogs to disappear themselves politically.

This time around, there is now no Green Party doing anything. They don’t even have to run the so called ‘safe states’ non-campaign of David Cobb this presidential race. Nobody takes the Green Party seriously anymore, and the repentant DP-voting liberals are safely back to waiting to cast their votes for a Hillary or a John once again. They chant ‘Anybody but a Republican!’ while voting for Democrats that are no different than the Republicans.

As to the socialists? They, too, are totally out of it. The Labor Movement has been split and socialists have largely ignored activating themselves through focusing on antiwar activism instead. There is not a Green Party vehicle to try to magically reach electoral Nirvana with either. Internationally, the socialist Left is in full retreat, too.

The Socialist Left has put itself in the political dead zone along with the Green Party itself. For almost 35 some odd years they have largely absented themselves from focusing on doing work to stop US militarism, and it shows. Why is the Green Party dead, dead, dead right now? For the same reason that the Socialist Left is. Neither has made opposing US militarism its priority political work. Instead, both went chasing political rainbows instead.

A political movement in this country that doesn’t make opposing the constant war making of the bipartisan US corporate government its central activity, just runs out of life. That’s what happened to The Greens. The fact is, that US militarism and how to go about stopping it is the central question of our time.

See Joshua Frank’s, The End of the Green Party? for more commentary about the Green Party’s disappearance act.

‘Global Fleet Stations’, AFRICOM, and demanding intervention

West Africa: U.S. Navy Plans Six-Month Regional Training Mission is to be done under AFRICOM direction. Both AFRICOM and this US militarization program for Africa that also includes bombing, invading, and occupying Somalia must be OK for all the activists calling for intervention into the Sudan. Why do I say this? It is simply because they want the US and Europe to intervene in Africa, rather than stop intervening there.

In fact, none of these groups speak out against these current activities of the Pentagon on the African continent. This is not an oversight at all. Many in the supposed world ‘peace’ camp actually unfortunately are not all that anti- US military use at all. They are what might be termed pseudo pacifists. These people just seem to think that it would be better for them to direct the war machine, and not Bush. That will not be the case though. The US war machine will bring about more suffering and bloodshed, and not greater peace, in Africa, if allowed by us to be used there.

Do not go along with all this call for intervention against Sudan. Intervene against your own reactionary government first.

US bloodies up Lebanon’s largest Palestinian refugee camp

Nahr el-Bared, one of Lebanon’s largest Palestinian refugee camp continues to be battered by the US-allied Lebanese government of ‘Prime Minister’ Saniori. The attack on this refugee camp was made in Washington DC, and Bush is sending in tons of military equipment in to the US controlled Lebanese government at this very moment. All to use on the Palestinian refugees in this camp.

Tens of thousands have already fled the bombardment, and Bush fully intends to terrorize these refugees yet more in the days to come. Yet the cowardly American corporate press is hiding away the details of American initiation of this attack and details of Bush’s political game plan to spread the US War Against Iraq into more and more neighboring countries. Rather than this just being an effort to clean out some extremists connected with al qaeda, this attack is nothing more than a direct US intervention into the internal political affairs of the Lebanese nation.

Once again, the US is helping Israel do its dirty work for it. In turn, Israel will be expected to continue to help the US do its dirty work of stealing out total control over the Middle East’s oil resources for itself. Meanwhile, how many amongst the circles of US soldiers, their families, and their friends know the full reasons of why American soldier’s lives are being (or were) put to risk on this Memorial Weekend? Their sacrifices are/were made in a war of the US rich against the World’s poor. And wounding and killing new thousands of destitute in Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps is about par for the course.

What does ‘Otpor’ have to do with Colorado Springs?

You probably missed the notice, but Otpor will be at Colorado College this week and next, ‘organizing non-violence’ oriented people. Otpor claims credit for itself for supposedly non-violently bringing down Milosevic in Yugoslavia, though the real credit for this feat had more to do with the violence of an illegal war against Yugoslavia organized by the US and its European allies than any local student movement in Belgrade.

And it had more to do with the funds the US government channelled into Yugoslavia to illegally influence the national elections there. Many of these funds went to Otpor.

These days, Otpor ideology acts in many other countries where the US channels funds to subvert local autonomy. It has changed its name to ‘Canvas’ and receives much aid not only directly from the US government, but also from many a rich American think tank. Essentially, it is a Right Wing imperialist US government pushed campaign masquerading as a form of international Leftism. It’s symbols are a clenched fist, even as it plays on the image of being Gandhi-ist and nonviolent, which has become a semi mystical religious cult amongst many US campuses harboring hordes of American middle class student types. Very attractive cover to keep help hide its hidden agenda of backing US government propaganda campaigns and interventions in nations around the world. Imperialists posing as non-violent pacifists recruiting relatively naive and innocent students who often believe in the sugar coated rhetoric being spread. What results is a ‘non-violence’ working side by side with US military and economic subversion of other countries.

The US government in the ’70s and ”80s at one time pushed another camouflaged Right Wing group inside the US disguised as Leftism. The leader of that cult effort was a man named Lyndon LaRouche, who still plies his wares from time to time. To the utter discredit of the Pikes Peak Justice and Peace Commission, this group a few months ago accepted for its newspaper a full page advertisement from this fascist who has many connections with US government and military high officials. A split off of this group operates in Mexico where it postures as being Far Left in a similar manner to how it has operated in the US. OTPOR in a way, is an extension of this type of covert government operation in private politics that Lyndon LaRouche got quite well known for at one time.

Wikipedia has done an excellent job in its coverage of Otpor, whose connections to US funding remain shadowy and hidden though it operates across the planet. Since they will have 2 of their operatives as Colorado College doing their thing, hopefully some of us will be there to challenge them on their real record this week.