Tag Archives: Revolution

Walk Like an Egyptian, You Wish

Western pyramid-gawkers since Napoleon have denigrated modern Egypt for the backwater it had become, its great civilization long extinguished. But it was a US dictator-imposed facade, with contemporary Egyptians dismissed as oil-less lackeys of the Euro-Zionist enterprise. How does the past week of Days of Rage in Hahrir Square, a measured, peaceful uprising redubbed by Fahmi Huweidi as “the Noble Anger,” reflect the immense dignity shown by a people who know they represent the heart of the Arab world?

Revolution in Egypt: cue the jackals

The struggle in Egypt between spontaneous uprising and desperate measures taken by Mubarak has become complicated by covert intelligence action. Looters have been unmasked as security agents, the police withdrew from the streets only to reappear as thugs unleashed on the vulnerable public. As the popular revolution appears irreversible, world bankers and investors are threatening to destabilize Egypt with the usual market sanctions.

Emma Goldman on Direct Action

Yes it was Emma Goldman who said “If voting changed anything, they’d make it illegal.”
It was no mere quip. The turn of the last century activist was a fierce advocate of every social reform and was ultimately exiled to Europe for challenging forced conscription. Do you wonder what else Goldman had to say, about political violence, prisons, patriotism, puritanism, the traffic of women, suffrage, poverty, birth control, and the struggle of minorities? Far from being a cynic, Goldman offered an alternative to the false hope of the ballot box.

What does the history of parliamentarism show? Nothing but failure and defeat, not even a single reform to ameliorate the economic and social stress of the people. Laws have been passed and enactments made for the improvement and protection of labor. Thus it was proven only last year that Illinois, with the most rigid laws for mine protection, had the greatest mine disasters. In States where child labor laws prevail, child exploitation is at its highest, and though with us the workers enjoy full political opportunities, capitalism has reached the most brazen zenith.

It may be claimed that men of integrity would not become corrupt in the political grinding mill. Perhaps not; but such men would be absolutely helpless to exert the slightest influence in behalf of labor, as indeed has been shown in numerous instances. The State is the economic master of its servants. Good men, if such there be, would either remain true to their political faith and lose their economic support, or they would cling to their economic master and be utterly unable to do the slightest good. The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue.

The political superstition is still holding sway over the hearts and minds of the masses, but the true lovers of liberty will have no more to do with it. Instead, they believe with Stirner that man has as much liberty as he is willing to take.

Universal suffrage itself owes its existence to direct action. If not for the spirit of rebellion, of the defiance on the part of the American revolutionary fathers, their posterity would still wear the King’s coat. If not for the direct action of a John Brown and his comrades, America would still trade in the flesh of the black man. True, the trade in white flesh is still going on; but that, too, will have to be abolished by direct action. Trade-unionism, the economic arena of the modern gladiator, owes its existence to direct action. It is but recently that law and government have attempted to crush the trade-union movement, and condemned the exponents of man’s right to organize to prison as conspirators. Had they sought to assert their cause through begging, pleading, and compromise, trade-unionism would today be a negligible quantity. In France, in Spain, in Italy, in Russia, nay even in England (witness the growing rebellion of English labor unions), direct, revolutionary, economic action has become so strong a force in the battle for industrial liberty as to make the world realize the tremendous importance of labor’s power. The General Strike, the supreme expression of the economic consciousness of the workers, was ridiculed in America but a short time ago. Today every great strike, in order to win, must realize the importance of the solidaric general protest.

Direct action, having proven effective along economic lines, is equally potent in the environment of the individual. There a hundred forces encroach upon his being, and only persistent resistance to them will finally set him free. Direct action against the authority in the shop, direct action against the authority of the law, direct action against the invasive, meddlesome authority of our moral code, is the logical, consistent method of Anarchism.

Will it not lead to a revolution? Indeed, it will. No real social change has ever come about without a revolution. People are either not familiar with their history, or they have not yet learned that revolution is but thought carried into action.

Here’s the full essay from which the above was excerpted, where Goldman cites Emerson, Wilde, Burroughs, Thoreau and GBS to laud the promise of anarchism and direct action.

ANARCHISM: WHAT IT REALLY STANDS FOR

ANARCHY.??

Ever reviled, accursed, ne’er understood,?
Thou art the grisly terror of our age.?
“Wreck of all order,” cry the multitude,?
“Art thou, and war and murder’s endless rage.
“?O, let them cry. To them that ne’er have striven?
The truth that lies behind a word to find,?
To them the word’s right meaning was not given.?
They shall continue blind among the blind.?
But thou, O word, so clear, so strong, so pure,
?Thou sayest all which I for goal have taken.?
I give thee to the future! Thine secure
?When each at least unto himself shall waken.?
Comes it in sunshine? In the tempest’s thrill??
I cannot tell–but it the earth shall see!
?I am an Anarchist! Wherefore I will
?Not rule, and also ruled I will not be!?
?
JOHN HENRY MACKAY.

THE history of human growth and development is at the same time the history of the terrible struggle of every new idea heralding the approach of a brighter dawn. In its tenacious hold on tradition, the Old has never hesitated to make use of the foulest and cruelest means to stay the advent of the New, in whatever form or period the latter may have asserted itself. Nor need we retrace our steps into the distant past to realize the enormity of opposition, difficulties, and hardships placed in the path of every progressive idea. The rack, the thumbscrew, and the knout are still with us; so are the convict’s garb and the social wrath, all conspiring against the spirit that is serenely marching on.

Anarchism could not hope to escape the fate of all other ideas of innovation. Indeed, as the most revolutionary and uncompromising innovator, Anarchism must needs meet with the combined ignorance and venom of the world it aims to reconstruct.

To deal even remotely with all that is being said and done against Anarchism would necessitate the writing of a whole volume. I shall therefore meet only two of the principal objections. In so doing, I shall attempt to elucidate what Anarchism really stands for.

The strange phenomenon of the opposition to Anarchism is that it brings to light the relation between so-called intelligence and ignorance. And yet this is not so very strange when we consider the relativity of all things. The ignorant mass has in its favor that it makes no pretense of knowledge or tolerance. Acting, as it always does, by mere impulse, its reasons are like those of a child. “Why?” “Because.” Yet the opposition of the uneducated to Anarchism deserves the same consideration as that of the intelligent man.

What, then, are the objections? First, Anarchism is impractical, though a beautiful ideal. Second, Anarchism stands for violence and destruction, hence it must be repudiated as vile and dangerous. Both the intelligent man and the ignorant mass judge not from a thorough knowledge of the subject, but either from hearsay or false interpretation.

A practical scheme, says Oscar Wilde, is either one already in existence, or a scheme that could be carried out under the existing conditions; but it is exactly the existing conditions that one objects to, and any scheme that could accept these conditions is wrong and foolish. The true criterion of the practical, therefore, is not whether the latter can keep intact the wrong or foolish; rather is it whether the scheme has vitality enough to leave the stagnant waters of the old, and build, as well as sustain, new life. In the light of this conception, Anarchism is indeed practical. More than any other idea, it is helping to do away with the wrong and foolish; more than any other idea, it is building and sustaining new life.

The emotions of the ignorant man are continuously kept at a pitch by the most blood-curdling stories about Anarchism. Not a thing too outrageous to be employed against this philosophy and its exponents. Therefore Anarchism represents to the unthinking what the proverbial bad man does to the child,–a black monster bent on swallowing everything; in short, destruction and violence.

Destruction and violence! How is the ordinary man to know that the most violent element in society is ignorance; that its power of destruction is the very thing Anarchism is combating? Nor is he aware that Anarchism, whose roots, as it were, are part of nature’s forces, destroys, not healthful tissue, but parasitic growths that feed on the life’s essence of society. It is merely clearing the soil from weeds and sagebrush, that it may eventually bear healthy fruit.

Someone has said that it requires less mental effort to condemn than to think. The widespread mental indolence, so prevalent in society, proves this to be only too true. Rather than to go to the bottom of any given idea, to examine into its origin and meaning, most people will either condemn it altogether, or rely on some superficial or prejudicial definition of non-essentials.

Anarchism urges man to think, to investigate, to analyze every proposition; but that the brain capacity of the average reader be not taxed too much, I also shall begin with a definition, and then elaborate on the latter.

ANARCHISM: –The philosophy of a new social order based on liberty unrestricted by man-made law; the theory that all forms of government rest on violence, and are therefore wrong and harmful, as well as unnecessary.

The new social order rests, of course, on the materialistic basis of life; but while all Anarchists agree that the main evil today is an economic one, they maintain that the solution of that evil can be brought about only through the consideration of every phase of life,–individual, as well as the collective; the internal, as well as the external phases.

A thorough perusal of the history of human development will disclose two elements in bitter conflict with each other; elements that are only now beginning to be understood, not as foreign to each other, but as closely related and truly harmonious, if only placed in proper environment: the individual and social instincts. The individual and society have waged a relentless and bloody battle for ages, each striving for supremacy, because each was blind to the value and importance of the other. The individual and social instincts,–the one a most potent factor for individual endeavor, for growth, aspiration, self-realization; the other an equally potent factor for mutual helpfulness and social well-being.

The explanation of the storm raging within the individual, and between him and his surroundings, is not far to seek. The primitive man, unable to understand his being, much less the unity of all life, felt himself absolutely dependent on blind, hidden forces ever ready to mock and taunt him. Out of that attitude grew the religious concepts of man as a mere speck of dust dependent on superior powers on high, who can only be appeased by complete surrender. All the early sagas rest on that idea, which continues to be the Leitmotiv of the biblical tales dealing with the relation of man to God, to the State, to society. Again and again the same motif, man is nothing, the powers are everything. Thus Jehovah would only endure man on condition of complete surrender. Man can have all the glories of the earth, but he must not become conscious of himself. The State, society, and moral laws all sing the same refrain: Man can have all the glories of the earth, but he must not become conscious of himself.

Anarchism is the only philosophy which brings to man the consciousness of himself; which maintains that God, the State, and society are non-existent, that their promises are null and void, since they can be fulfilled only through man’s subordination. Anarchism is therefore the teacher of the unity of life; not merely in nature, but in man. There is no conflict between the individual and the social instincts, any more than there is between the heart and the lungs: the one the receptacle of a precious life essence, the other the repository of the element that keeps the essence pure and strong. The individual is the heart of society, conserving the essence of social life; society is the lungs which are distributing the element to keep the life essence–that is, the individual–pure and strong.

“The one thing of value in the world,” says Emerson, “is the active soul; this every man contains within him. The soul active sees absolute truth and utters truth and creates.” In other words, the individual instinct is the thing of value in the world. It is the true soul that sees and creates the truth alive, out of which is to come a still greater truth, the re-born social soul.

Anarchism is the great liberator of man from the phantoms that have held him captive; it is the arbiter and pacifier of the two forces for individual and social harmony. To accomplish that unity, Anarchism has declared war on the pernicious influences which have so far prevented the harmonious blending of individual and social instincts, the individual and society.

Religion, the dominion of the human mind; Property, the dominion of human needs; and Government, the dominion of human conduct, represent the stronghold of man’s enslavement and all the horrors it entails. Religion! How it dominates man’s mind, how it humiliates and degrades his soul. God is everything, man is nothing, says religion. But out of that nothing God has created a kingdom so despotic, so tyrannical, so cruel, so terribly exacting that naught but gloom and tears and blood have ruled the world since gods began. Anarchism rouses man to rebellion against this black monster. Break your mental fetters, says Anarchism to man, for not until you think and judge for yourself will you get rid of the dominion of darkness, the greatest obstacle to all progress.

Property, the dominion of man’s needs, the denial of the right to satisfy his needs. Time was when property claimed a divine right, when it came to man with the same refrain, even as religion, “Sacrifice! Abnegate! Submit!” The spirit of Anarchism has lifted man from his prostrate position. He now stands erect, with his face toward the light. He has learned to see the insatiable, devouring, devastating nature of property, and he is preparing to strike the monster dead.

“Property is robbery,” said the great French Anarchist Proudhon. Yes, but without risk and danger to the robber. Monopolizing the accumulated efforts of man, property has robbed him of his birthright, and has turned him loose a pauper and an outcast. Property has not even the time-worn excuse that man does not create enough to satisfy all needs. The A B C student of economics knows that the productivity of labor within the last few decades far exceeds normal demand. But what are normal demands to an abnormal institution? The only demand that property recognizes is its own gluttonous appetite for greater wealth, because wealth means power; the power to subdue, to crush, to exploit, the power to enslave, to outrage, to degrade. America is particularly boastful of her great power, her enormous national wealth. Poor America, of what avail is all her wealth, if the individuals comprising the nation are wretchedly poor? If they live in squalor, in filth, in crime, with hope and joy gone, a homeless, soilless army of human prey.

It is generally conceded that unless the returns of any business venture exceed the cost, bankruptcy is inevitable. But those engaged in the business of producing wealth have not yet learned even this simple lesson. Every year the cost of production in human life is growing larger (50,000 killed, 100,000 wounded in America last year); the returns to the masses, who help to create wealth, are ever getting smaller. Yet America continues to be blind to the inevitable bankruptcy of our business of production. Nor is this the only crime of the latter. Still more fatal is the crime of turning the producer into a mere particle of a machine, with less will and decision than his master of steel and iron. Man is being robbed not merely of the products of his labor, but of the power of free initiative, of originality, and the interest in, or desire for, the things he is making.

Real wealth consists in things of utility and beauty, in things that help to create strong, beautiful bodies and surroundings inspiring to live in. But if man is doomed to wind cotton around a spool, or dig coal, or build roads for thirty years of his life, there can be no talk of wealth. What he gives to the world is only gray and hideous things, reflecting a dull and hideous existence,–too weak to live, too cowardly to die. Strange to say, there are people who extol this deadening method of centralized production as the proudest achievement of our age. They fail utterly to realize that if we are to continue in machine subserviency, our slavery is more complete than was our bondage to the King. They do not want to know that centralization is not only the death-knell of liberty, but also of health and beauty, of art and science, all these being impossible in a clock-like, mechanical atmosphere.

Anarchism cannot but repudiate such a method of production: its goal is the freest possible expression of all the latent powers of the individual. Oscar Wilde defines a perfect personality as “one who develops under perfect conditions, who is not wounded, maimed, or in danger.” A perfect personality, then, is only possible in a state of society where man is free to choose the mode of work, the conditions of work, and the freedom to work. One to whom the making of a table, the building of a house, or the tilling of the soil, is what the painting is to the artist and the discovery to the scientist,–the result of inspiration, of intense longing, and deep interest in work as a creative force. That being the ideal of Anarchism, its economic arrangements must consist of voluntary productive and distributive associations, gradually developing into free communism, as the best means of producing with the least waste of human energy. Anarchism, however, also recognizes the right of the individual, or numbers of individuals, to arrange at all times for other forms of work, in harmony with their tastes and desires.

Such free display of human energy being possible only under complete individual and social freedom, Anarchism directs its forces against the third and greatest foe of all social equality; namely, the State, organized authority, or statutory law,–the dominion of human conduct.

Just as religion has fettered the human mind, and as property, or the monopoly of things, has subdued and stifled man’s needs, so has the State enslaved his spirit, dictating every phase of conduct. “All government in essence,” says Emerson, “is tyranny.” It matters not whether it is government by divine right or majority rule. In every instance its aim is the absolute subordination of the individual.

Referring to the American government, the greatest American Anarchist, David Thoreau, said:

“Government, what is it but a tradition, though a recent one, endeavoring to transmit itself unimpaired to posterity, but each instance losing its integrity; it has not the vitality and force of a single living man. Law never made man a whit more just; and by means of their respect for it, even the well disposed are daily made agents of injustice.”

Indeed, the keynote of government is injustice. With the arrogance and self-sufficiency of the King who could do no wrong, governments ordain, judge, condemn, and punish the most insignificant offenses, while maintaining themselves by the greatest of all offenses, the annihilation of individual liberty. Thus Ouida is right when she maintains that

“the State only aims at instilling those qualities in its public by which its demands are obeyed, and its exchequer is filled. Its highest attainment is the reduction of mankind to clockwork. In its atmosphere all those finer and more delicate liberties, which require treatment and spacious expansion, inevitably dry up and perish. The State requires a taxpaying machine in which there is no hitch, an exchequer in which there is never a deficit, and a public, monotonous, obedient, colorless, spiritless, moving humbly like a flock of sheep along a straight high road between two walls.”

Yet even a flock of sheep would resist the chicanery of the State, if it were not for the corruptive, tyrannical, and oppressive methods it employs to serve its purposes. Therefore Bakunin repudiates the State as synonymous with the surrender of the liberty of the individual or small minorities,–the destruction of social relationship, the curtailment, or complete denial even, of life itself, for its own aggrandizement. The State is the altar of political freedom and, like the religious altar, it is maintained for the purpose of human sacrifice.

In fact, there is hardly a modern thinker who does not agree that government, organized authority, or the State, is necessary only to maintain or protect property and monopoly. It has proven efficient in that function only.

Even George Bernard Shaw, who hopes for the miraculous from the State under Fabianism, nevertheless admits that “it is at present a huge machine for robbing and slave-driving of the poor by brute force.” This being the case, it is hard to see why the clever prefacer wishes to uphold the State after poverty shall have ceased to exist.

Unfortunately, there are still a number of people who continue in the fatal belief that government rests on natural laws, that it maintains social order and harmony, that it diminishes crime, and that it prevents the lazy man from fleecing his fellows. I shall therefore examine these contentions.

A natural law is that factor in man which asserts itself freely and spontaneously without any external force, in harmony with the requirements of nature. For instance, the demand for nutrition, for sex gratification, for light, air, and exercise, is a natural law. But its expression needs not the machinery of government, needs not the club, the gun, the handcuff, or the prison. To obey such laws, if we may call it obedience, requires only spontaneity and free opportunity. That governments do not maintain themselves through such harmonious factors is proven by the terrible array of violence, force, and coercion all governments use in order to live. Thus Blackstone is right when he says, “Human laws are invalid, because they are contrary to the laws of nature.”

Unless it be the order of Warsaw after the slaughter of thousands of people, it is difficult to ascribe to governments any capacity for order or social harmony. Order derived through submission and maintained by terror is not much of a safe guaranty; yet that is the only “order” that governments have ever maintained. True social harmony grows naturally out of solidarity of interests. In a society where those who always work never have anything, while those who never work enjoy everything, solidarity of interests is non-existent; hence social harmony is but a myth. The only way organized authority meets this grave situation is by extending still greater privileges to those who have already monopolized the earth, and by still further enslaving the disinherited masses. Thus the entire arsenal of government–laws, police, soldiers, the courts, legislatures, prisons,–is strenuously engaged in “harmonizing” the most antagonistic elements in society.

The most absurd apology for authority and law is that they serve to diminish crime. Aside from the fact that the State is itself the greatest criminal, breaking every written and natural law, stealing in the form of taxes, killing in the form of war and capital punishment, it has come to an absolute standstill in coping with crime. It has failed utterly to destroy or even minimize the horrible scourge of its own creation.

Crime is naught but misdirected energy. So long as every institution of today, economic, political, social, and moral, conspires to misdirect human energy into wrong channels; so long as most people are out of place doing the things they hate to do, living a life they loathe to live, crime will be inevitable, and all the laws on the statutes can only increase, but never do away with, crime. What does society, as it exists today, know of the process of despair, the poverty, the horrors, the fearful struggle the human soul must pass on its way to crime and degradation. Who that knows this terrible process can fail to see the truth in these words of Peter Kropotkin:

“Those who will hold the balance between the benefits thus attributed to law and punishment and the degrading effect of the latter on humanity; those who will estimate the torrent of depravity poured abroad in human society by the informer, favored by the Judge even, and paid for in clinking cash by governments, under the pretext of aiding to unmask crime; those who will go within prison walls and there see what human beings become when deprived of liberty, when subjected to the care of brutal keepers, to coarse, cruel words, to a thousand stinging, piercing humiliations, will agree with us that the entire apparatus of prison and punishment is an abomination which ought to be brought to an end.”

The deterrent influence of law on the lazy man is too absurd to merit consideration. If society were only relieved of the waste and expense of keeping a lazy class, and the equally great expense of the paraphernalia of protection this lazy class requires, the social tables would contain an abundance for all, including even the occasional lazy individual. Besides, it is well to consider that laziness results either from special privileges, or physical and mental abnormalities. Our present insane system of production fosters both, and the most astounding phenomenon is that people should want to work at all now. Anarchism aims to strip labor of its deadening, dulling aspect, of its gloom and compulsion. It aims to make work an instrument of joy, of strength, of color, of real harmony, so that the poorest sort of a man should find in work both recreation and hope.

To achieve such an arrangement of life, government, with its unjust, arbitrary, repressive measures, must be done away with. At best it has but imposed one single mode of life upon all, without regard to individual and social variations and needs. In destroying government and statutory laws, Anarchism proposes to rescue the self-respect and independence of the individual from all restraint and invasion by authority. Only in freedom can man grow to his full stature. Only in freedom will he learn to think and move, and give the very best in him. Only in freedom will he realize the true force of the social bonds which knit men together, and which are the true foundation of a normal social life.

But what about human nature? Can it be changed? And if not, will it endure under Anarchism?

Poor human nature, what horrible crimes have been committed in thy name! Every fool, from king to policeman, from the flatheaded parson to the visionless dabbler in science, presumes to speak authoritatively of human nature. The greater the mental charlatan, the more definite his insistence on the wickedness and weaknesses of human nature. Yet, how can any one speak of it today, with every soul in a prison, with every heart fettered, wounded, and maimed?

John Burroughs has stated that experimental study of animals in captivity is absolutely useless. Their character, their habits, their appetites undergo a complete transformation when torn from their soil in field and forest. With human nature caged in a narrow space, whipped daily into submission, how can we speak of its potentialities?

Freedom, expansion, opportunity, and, above all, peace and repose, alone can teach us the real dominant factors of human nature and all its wonderful possibilities.

Anarchism, then, really stands for the liberation of the human mind from the dominion of religion; the liberation of the human body from the dominion of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. Anarchism stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals for the purpose of producing real social wealth; an order that will guarantee to every human being free access to the earth and full enjoyment of the necessities of life, according to individual desires, tastes, and inclinations.

This is not a wild fancy or an aberration of the mind. It is the conclusion arrived at by hosts of intellectual men and women the world over; a conclusion resulting from the close and studious observation of the tendencies of modern society: individual liberty and economic equality, the twin forces for the birth of what is fine and true in man.

As to methods. Anarchism is not, as some may suppose, a theory of the future to be realized through divine inspiration. It is a living force in the affairs of our life, constantly creating new conditions. The methods of Anarchism therefore do not comprise an iron-clad program to be carried out under all circumstances. Methods must grow out of the economic needs of each place and clime, and of the intellectual and temperamental requirements of the individual. The serene, calm character of a Tolstoy will wish different methods for social reconstruction than the intense, overflowing personality of a Michael Bakunin or a Peter Kropotkin. Equally so it must be apparent that the economic and political needs of Russia will dictate more drastic measures than would England or America. Anarchism does not stand for military drill and uniformity; it does, however, stand for the spirit of revolt, in whatever form, against everything that hinders human growth. All Anarchists agree in that, as they also agree in their opposition to the political machinery as a means of bringing about the great social change.

“All voting,” says Thoreau, “is a sort of gaming, like checkers, or backgammon, a playing with right and wrong; its obligation never exceeds that of expediency. Even voting for the right thing is doing nothing for it. A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority.” A close examination of the machinery of politics and its achievements will bear out the logic of Thoreau.

What does the history of parliamentarism show? Nothing but failure and defeat, not even a single reform to ameliorate the economic and social stress of the people. Laws have been passed and enactments made for the improvement and protection of labor. Thus it was proven only last year that Illinois, with the most rigid laws for mine protection, had the greatest mine disasters. In States where child labor laws prevail, child exploitation is at its highest, and though with us the workers enjoy full political opportunities, capitalism has reached the most brazen zenith.

Even were the workers able to have their own representatives, for which our good Socialist politicians are clamoring, what chances are there for their honesty and good faith? One has but to bear in mind the process of politics to realize that its path of good intentions is full of pitfalls: wire-pulling, intriguing, flattering, lying, cheating; in fact, chicanery of every description, whereby the political aspirant can achieve success. Added to that is a complete demoralization of character and conviction, until nothing is left that would make one hope for anything from such a human derelict. Time and time again the people were foolish enough to trust, believe, and support with their last farthing aspiring politicians, only to find themselves betrayed and cheated.

It may be claimed that men of integrity would not become corrupt in the political grinding mill. Perhaps not; but such men would be absolutely helpless to exert the slightest influence in behalf of labor, as indeed has been shown in numerous instances. The State is the economic master of its servants. Good men, if such there be, would either remain true to their political faith and lose their economic support, or they would cling to their economic master and be utterly unable to do the slightest good. The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue.

The political superstition is still holding sway over the hearts and minds of the masses, but the true lovers of liberty will have no more to do with it. Instead, they believe with Stirner that man has as much liberty as he is willing to take. Anarchism therefore stands for direct action, the open defiance of, and resistance to, all laws and restrictions, economic, social, and moral. But defiance and resistance are illegal. Therein lies the salvation of man. Everything illegal necessitates integrity, self-reliance, and courage. In short, it calls for free, independent spirits, for “men who are men, and who have a bone in their backs which you cannot pass your hand through.”

Universal suffrage itself owes its existence to direct action. If not for the spirit of rebellion, of the defiance on the part of the American revolutionary fathers, their posterity would still wear the King’s coat. If not for the direct action of a John Brown and his comrades, America would still trade in the flesh of the black man. True, the trade in white flesh is still going on; but that, too, will have to be abolished by direct action. Trade-unionism, the economic arena of the modern gladiator, owes its existence to direct action. It is but recently that law and government have attempted to crush the trade-union movement, and condemned the exponents of man’s right to organize to prison as conspirators. Had they sought to assert their cause through begging, pleading, and compromise, trade-unionism would today be a negligible quantity. In France, in Spain, in Italy, in Russia, nay even in England (witness the growing rebellion of English labor unions), direct, revolutionary, economic action has become so strong a force in the battle for industrial liberty as to make the world realize the tremendous importance of labor’s power. The General Strike, the supreme expression of the economic consciousness of the workers, was ridiculed in America but a short time ago. Today every great strike, in order to win, must realize the importance of the solidaric general protest.

Direct action, having proven effective along economic lines, is equally potent in the environment of the individual. There a hundred forces encroach upon his being, and only persistent resistance to them will finally set him free. Direct action against the authority in the shop, direct action against the authority of the law, direct action against the invasive, meddlesome authority of our moral code, is the logical, consistent method of Anarchism.

Will it not lead to a revolution? Indeed, it will. No real social change has ever come about without a revolution. People are either not familiar with their history, or they have not yet learned that revolution is but thought carried into action.

Anarchism, the great leaven of thought, is today permeating every phase of human endeavor. Science, art, literature, the drama, the effort for economic betterment, in fact every individual and social opposition to the existing disorder of things, is illumined by the spiritual light of Anarchism. It is the philosophy of the sovereignty of the individual. It is the theory of social harmony. It is the great, surging, living truth that is reconstructing the world, and that will usher in the Dawn.

When I get my gun

If I had a gun it would serve as my point of meditation.
[Excerpt, Swimming Upstream, Eve Ensler editor]
 
And I would look at it and re-remember Harriet Tubman’s steely whisper and Nanny’s ear-splitting yell, Ida B. Wells’ unrelenting voice and Fannie Lou Hamer’s unwavering glare. I’d remember Nat Turner’s plot and Tony Morrison’s advice.

And when I shot my gun, my target would be well planned, my aim precise. I would know exactly who to shoot, and when and where to shoot them, and how many of their friends needed to be shot too.

And when they were dead, when they were all dead, so would be oppression, globalism, neocolonialism, government, capitalism, enslavement, corporations, greed, hunger, hate, religion, war, poverty, cruelty.

No no, it can’t be too soon for me, the day I get my gun.

Following Right Wing political theology

Faith based politics where you have to believe fervently the dogma handed down by the High Priests of Capital… But according to their gospels of greed, there has never actually been any revolution where wealth has been redistributed to the poor from the wealthy. In other words, the wealth has been transferred from one group of heavily armed rich thieves to another. Lateral instead of Vertical economic mobility. Thus, no real Socialist state or more importantly, Socialist Economy has ever existed, at least according to the Ayn Rand Theology. Yet somehow, it’s the Communists and Socialists, the ones who never had their hands on the missing bread in the first place, who crashed the economy repeatedly over the past 500 years of straight-on Capitalism. For instance the Mortgage Crisis that immediately preceded the crash of the War-expense Bloated Debt Economy.

Not the approximately ten trillion dollar difference in Budget surplus projected v the budget deficit Actual. Part of that went to Enron in a pyramid scheme. To end all pyramid schemes? Nay verily. Kenny Lay died, basically in jail, ready to make the trip to Club Fed where Rich Thieves spend a few months of “hard” time. Without the money and, importantly, without ever telling anybody who exactly was holding the cash. Bush and Cheney, Suspects Prime and Secondary, generously brushed aside any suspicion of their guilt in the matter and since they controlled the Justice department, so did the DoJ. But that’s not the straw that broke the camels back. Nor was the massive War Budget, unfunded save for credit, issued against Future Taxes. By putting Future in front of the word Taxes GW and his merry band of thieves managed to say that they hadn’t raised Taxes. The correct and true way to put it would be that they hadn’t raised CURRENT taxes. Making War Profits basically untaxable granted the richest pigs in America virtually tax free existence. Massive tax cuts to the people who make all their money on the spending of Tax Generated money. A double gift of Corporate Welfare and Corporate Warfare.

But it’s the Socialists who never had their hands on the bread who are to blame.

With the Mortgage Crisis, one of many investment scams that went wrong all at once, people who control less than a percent of the income in America are alleged to have brought the entire house of cards down.

People, I’m capable of a LITTLE bit of math, m’kay? Which would you think, logically speaking, mathematically speaking, to be more likely, that people with full control of 95% of the wealth crashing the economy or the less than a percent “controllers”?

According to the Right Wing Theology, it’s obviously the < 1%. Up is black, east is sideways and Oceania has ALWAYS been at war with Eastasia.

Oh, and the Weathermen who are alleged to have killed 4 people, including 3 weathermen.. Are the supremely violent ones, not the Big Pigs who kick open the gates of Hell and start scooping in thousands at a time. Wonderful how placing the decimal a few digits to the Right can skew the equation so elegantly.

And carpet bombing nations who don’t do as our Freedom Loving Dictators tell them is somehow less murderous and violent than a few very ineffective bombs in America. How many hundreds of thousands of USAF, Navy and Army bombs were dropped on South VietNam, (more than on North VietNam and neither one of which were at war with America), how many Millions dropped on North Korea? Yet the Weathermen are the Terrorists.

Nonviolence is the refuge of cowards

I say this with the full authority of my own personal experience: nonviolence is for cowards. When push has come to shove, I stepped to the sidewalk but I am so full of admiration for those who stayed in the line of fire. Today much of the world commemorates Bastille Day, France’s unique independence day, because it launched the French Revolution. Not just a revolution for the masses of humanity, but their Enlightenment. Storming the Bastilles was no small transformative event, and the sans-culottes were not led by urgings to keep it nonviolent. The monarchy took heed, as it had for every historic concession, because the citizenry had it scared to death.

Have you changed social inequity by voting in the polls? Have you found justice via protest? Sought, beseeched, was as far as you got. Violent uprising has not lately looking too effective either. But it’s got the track record.

I’m not saying I’m up to the task, but I assure you I have the courage to be nonviolent in spades.

It is a most self-aggrandizing dishonesty that holds nonviolence to be brave. There is nothing easier than to take the path of least resistance. I don’t mean to downplay the audacity to protest, as opposed to conforming, although isn’t sticking to your principles squarly self-indulgent? I claim no credit for failing to bend on matters of principle. In fact, sometimes I feel positively anti-social.

But taken the next step, what’s easier than subjecting yourself to the authority of the sword? Again it’s the principle of not becoming like your abuser, another no-brainer, but no-bravery required.

Standing up for what you believe? Easy-peasy. To the death? Positively cowardly lion.

This is you inner dialog, be honest: I defy your authority, but only so far. I reject your physical oppression, but just kidding. I call for the total destruction of your hierarchy, but only in words, I’m entitled, and you can’t lay a finger on me because I’m playing by the rules.

Hope of getting anywhere: dismal. Modern social movements have only Gandhi and Mandela as purported success stories. But I’ll not insult the elders. The Gandhi and Mandela of our textbooks bear no resemblance to the reality, they are false role-models put forth by fascists who want to blunt every effort to rise against power.

Oh, nonviolence is the higher ideal, sure. Lovely. Browny points for the afterlife. Trickle-up transcendence has as much potential for success as awaiting extraterrestrials or building playing fields for disgraced baseball reincarnates.

Unless power wants to transcend the human experience, and lift all of us with it, mankind is not going anywhere. The only way you’re going to levitate powerful heads is with a guillotine. Dreadfully eighteenth century, but check out the horrific bygone days from which they’re reconstituting torture and feudalism.

You can probably contrive a litany of rationalizations for why it would be beneath you, but imagine picking up a gun and having a go against the overwhelming power of the state. Now that’s terrifying.

Thinking outside the bomb, in the box

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOMB is a clever antiwar appropriation of Taco Bell’s inventive twist, but since when does imitation break from a box? And does “the bomb” mean what it used to? By the look of their logo, the TOTB activists are not talking about the A-bomb, nor bunker-busters, nor smart-bombs, nor predator drones. Intentionally or not, TOTB they’re invoking the proverbial cartoon explosive, wielded by anarchists or other insurgents, the only means by which social uprisings have ever transcended the box.

“The bomb” was the feared Armageddon of the early nuclear age. More recently, “Food Not Bombs” conflates bombs with militarism because modern war-making, aka peace-keeping, is dominated by aerial bombing. Returning to “bomb” in the singular insinuates nukes, or the mutually-assured destructiveness of endlessly reciprocated violence. So let’s see the bomb depicted more as a nuclear warhead or an artillery shell.

Intrinsic to the plea for nonviolence is the determination to subdue the military instinct with transcendence. And when have proponents of nonviolence exerted jurisdiction over anyone but themselves? Lead by example they cry. We will defeat the barbarians by not becoming barbarians ourselves. Turn the other cheek, the meek shall inherit the earth. I rather suspect, quoth Camelot: “It’s not the earth the meek inherit, it’s the dirt.”

To warmongers I say: think. In of itself, thinking is outside the box enough for you. To peaceniks: exchanging the challenges of human reality for a spiritual realm, is a religious balm that dates to antiquity, about as inside the box as it gets.

Haiti public menace is old stereotype

Once again NMT scoops the corporate media desperate for images of menacing Haitians on the verge of violence. These 1793 engravings aimed to anger the French public against the savagery of the Haitians rising against their masters in then Colonial French St. Domingue.
haiti-pillage-de-cap-francais-2

A detail from The Pillage of Cap François, 1793, from Brown University Archives.

haiti-pillage-de-cap-francois-1793
Another detail of the murder of French colonists. These are extracts from a tableau which depicts the eleven days of mayhem before the arrival of military reinforcements. These inflammatory scenes show whites being victimized by grotesque pig-nosed blacks, looking absurd in stolen clothing, gorging themselves with the food and drink of their masters.

haiti-incendie-cap-francois
The same event, this is titled the Burning of Cap Français.

Water on the Moon.

Will cause an outcry from those who want to make the Moon into a missile base. Water can be made into fuel and breathable oxygen by splitting the molecule apart using a charge of direct current. Such as can be harvested from Solar Panels. On the moon there’s no such thing as a cloudy day, and one side is eternally night, the other eternally day. Or close enough as to make no practical difference.

This technology has been in existence for over a hundred years. Using DC for electrification was one of Edisons pet projects. He invented the Electric Chair to demonstrate the dangers of Alternating Current. Solar generation of Direct Current was one of Einstein’s inventions. In 1905. It could have been as easily developed, and for a lot less money, a lot less bloodshed, and a lot less ecological and (related) Economic damage than Petroleum.

Hydrogen fuel is as explosive as gasoline but without the really negative side effects, like the fumes from stored gasoline, which are lethal in many ways, depending on the number of additives. Hydrogen was used for the boosters of the Moon Rockets. It’s powerful enough to run any internal combustion engine. But less economic, ecological and political damage… also meant less outrageous profits spread among the very fewest 5% of the worlds population. The profits would have been more widely distributed, just like Sunshine and Water distributed around the world by weather patterns. Weather which is the front end for Climate.

It would have been, to the minds of the Super Rich, Chaos and Anarchy if they weren’t in full control of the economy of the world. Imagine people being actually close to equal in wealth, and that without bloody revolution.

But Standard Oil was subsidized, Solar Energy and its very real stepchild Hydrogen fuel was Not Subsidized.

Welfare for the Greedy, not for the Needy. The Wealthy didn’t care if the scions of the Peasantry were sacrificed in the wars “necessary” to maintain their hold on the Wealth. They themselves weren’t at immediate risk, and their own children, those who couldn’t buy their way out of Conscription, meant nothing to them either. In the Greed Game it’s “Me me me me It’s the Me Show, starring— ME!”
George Bush Senior could afford to buy W’s way out of the draft and out of Combat. Easily.

If it had been more expensive than he wished, he would have cut Junior loose and Junior would have been up to his ass in mud, mosquitoes and VietMinh fighters the same as the “Lower” class soldiers. They don’t care about climate change any more than they care about wars, after all, they expect to be long dead by the time it causes a catastrophe. So what if THEIR kids and grandkids have to live with their bad decisions as well as ours? The Rich Pigg way of looking at his pigglets is “Oh well, it’s not ME that’s going to pay, big deal who cares la di da…”

So we’re now, even with so very little investment (especially compared to the Government subsidies to Fossil Fuel) being given over to “alternatives” like wind, solar and hydrogen in a real position to take advantage of the technology, ours as much as that of the Bigg Piggs.

Splitting the water molecules into Hydrogen and Oxygen would be the fastest and most efficient (and cheapest) method of separating water out of Pollution, instead of the methods we use now to filter the pollution from the water.

And when it burns, two hydrogen atoms reunite with their ol’ buddy Oxygen et voila içi, water once more.

But again, it wouldn’t make the gap between Richest and Poorest any wider, and indeed, would tend to close that gap. Thus, it’s a No-go.

The biggest uses of Hydrogen power and Solar power were for the Space Race, the race to put missile bases on the Moon. Satellites typically use Solar power more than Nuclear, because Nuclear power involves boiling water and using the energy from the expansion (not separation) of the water molecules to turn turbines. Water, which there’s not much thereof you could put into a Satellite the size of your closet. Certainly not enough to run a satellite for thirty or forty years. Solar panels to the rescue.

The case for having a missile base on the moon is illustrated by how easy it is to launch a payload slightly more massive than a Corvette into lunar orbit, accelerate out of Lunar Orbit (lunar mass “specific gravity” being one-sixth that of Terran mass, escape velocity would be one sixth that of a launch from the Earth)

It took those huge von Braun engines Remember them? The crew was in that little bitty eensy weensy tiny small little minuscule nose of the rocket, the rest of it was pure fuel. That’s the amount of fuel and rocket body necessary to launch bombs into orbit and drop them back into the atmosphere and wherever on the surface of the earth you want them.

Hydrogen fuel is tricky to maintain for long periods of time, so the missiles cost and cost and cost and cost even sitting in their silos. Year before last there was a fire at a missile silo on the Range at Minot, North Dakota that the Air Force didn’t discover for a week.

Remember though, any who would carp at this by flying the canard “well, if it’s that dangerous, why should you use it in your cars?” my answer is, Rocket Science. If GASOLINE is too inefficient, tricky and dangerous to use in Missiles, as determined by oh… 8 decades of high dollar Military Research (you know military, yes? The Right Wing Lunatic Fringe WORSHIP all things military)again TOO DANGEROUS to use for fuel in their jet aircraft and their rockets and missiles, why should you park a couple hundred pounds of it in front of your house or in the garage attached to your house?

The answer is simple. Your purchase of that gasoline makes you poorer and the Rich Piggs richer.

But from the Moon to the Earth, why, they wouldn’t need tons of Hydrogen to launch hundreds of pounds of Bomb. All they have to do is accelerate it to twice the speed of sound, against one sixth the gravitational pull and exactly zero percent of the atmospheric drag of the Earth, to escape lunar orbit and drop into Terran orbit. And from there, as demonstrated by the recovery of the astronauts landing capsules, the “goodies” can be dropped to within a few meters of where you want them to fall. Plenty close enough for a bomb that would lay waste to a couple MILLION square meters of surrounding city.(couple thousand square Kilometers)

All of this demonstrated by the good offices of NASA and Space Command.

The only thing that kept the Moon Missile Madness from erupting in the early 1970s was there was no water on the Moon, or so it was thought.

The technology is there, though, for US to harvest it. Solar panels are cheaper and cheaper every day. Separating oxygen from hydrogen is a simple process like making the rust travel from one nail to another with Electroplating.

The Electric current needed to do it is provided by old Mr Sun, the water, well, we’ve got plenty of Polluted Water laying around that’s not doing anything but Poisoning us and our children for thousands of years to come.

What stands between us and that? Lunatics. Again with a Moon reference. But the same people who brought us the Town Hall Stupidity against the Health Care Public Option are at it again, this time wanting to mine the national park lands for Shale Oil and Coal, so they can dump more Chemical Crap into the drinking water.  And keep the gap between Richest and Poorest growing every minute of every day.

Their rabid addiction to the Status Quo is like the Monkey Trap. My mom and her sisters had a pet monkey named Moe when they were on Formosa in the mid 50s. The reason for him being one handed is the Monkey Trap.

You take a gourd and tie it to a tree trunk, branch… whatever will hold it securely. You drill a hole in  it  just big enough for a monkey to put his empty hand in. Then drop in a rock that’s almost as big as the hole. Monkey comes, rattles the gourd. Aha! says Monkey, something good that the humans have hidden away from me, it must be really good… sticks his hand in and can’t pull it out with the rock in it. Monkey doesn’t know it’s just a rock like the thousands of small rocks around him. Keeps trying to get his hand out. Makes enough noise that the Vilage Poacher knows he has something in his snare, comes up, and even in that much peril, holding on to the most worthless thing imaginable, the monkey won’t let go.

Usually the monkey gets a fast trip to the supper table. Moe was treated special because they knew they could sell him to the Yankees for a pet.

It did so much damage to his hand that it had to be amputated.

Monkeys are incredibly smart, Moe could untie knots (except for a simple square knot, because you need both hands to undo it) using the one hand.

But they don’t even have to move the snare, even if other monkeys in the troop are watching what happened to Monkey Dinner #1 each in turn will try to steal that incredibly worthless rock from the gourd.

Kind of like the Tea Party Monkeys with their insistence that the Old, proven to be worthless way is somehow Valuable and they’ll hold on to that little worthless Old Way Of Doing Things as long as they possibly can.

And if they can arrange it, have a missile base on the Moon.

They’ll swell out their chests with Pride and Jingoism, “Why, look at what WE have!”

Even though they own no more of it than they do the Missile Bases or Army Cavalry Bases or Cheyenne Mountain. They, the Shock Troop monkeys, don’t matter any at all to the Rich Piggs. They can get all Jingoistic and say “Look at OUR Cheyenne Mountain!” and know they’ll get no closer to the front gate than the Zoo on the other side of the mountain.

There’s a town just outside El Paso Texas called “Moon City”, the Slick Real Estate Developers got the locals real good, told them and sold them that they wouldn’t have to pay city taxes . They also didn’t get city services. Like Fire, Police, Ambulance, Transit, Road maintenance… WATER…

You could look out from Moon City and see every morning and afternoon thousands of gallons of Water being poured on a Golf Course owned by the very richest. The golf course borders right on the City Limits.

But as far as getting city services was concerned, the Real Estate Scam Victims might just as well have been on the Moon.

Same way the Local Tea Babblers with that “look at what WE have!” …

They can’t take any more possession of Cheyenne Mountain or Ft Carson or Pete Field than they could flap their arms and fly to the moon.

They don’t own any more of it than they do the Oil they’re so proudly trying to force the rest of us to buy, burn, drink breathe and eat for as long as they can.

All they own is the Freedom to say and do exactly what their Masters tell them.

And in return get fed Moonbeams.

There’s a song “poor little black child, living on the street

no place to call his home and not near enough to eat

but you know that kid was proud, one July afternoon

cause some man named Armstrong done walked on the Moon”

Obama ate a fish who knew Lincoln

bottom feederFishermen have always called it the Slimehead fish. It’s sorta-scientific name is Darwin’s Slimehead. But when bottom-of-the-barrel scraping began for the ocean’s remaining fisheries, fishmongers created a market for the never-thought-palatable deep bottom feeder by renaming it the Orange Roughy.
 
That much you’ve probably heard before.

Really, what’s in a name? A fish by any other name will smell too. Is there a fish story without hyperbole, that does not smell fishy? The idiom comes from the experience-honed doubt that the fishmonger’s catch is not fresh. People know steak is dead cow, so does it matter that Orange Roughy is Slimehead, Monkfish is Goosefish, Rock Salmon is Spiny Dogfish, or Tilapia is Mouthbrooder?

Actually Israeli exporters wanted to give Tilapia a biblical makeover, asserting the Tilapia from the Sea of Galilee, should be called St. Peter’s Fish, but US regulators intervened. In the Gospel of Matthew 17:27, apostle Peter tells tax collectors where they can go. In more than that many words he tells them to go fish, and from the mouth of the “first fish they catch,” they will find the four drachmas he owes them. The FDA didn’t buy it either. By the way, if you doubt Wikipedia has Zionist preoccupations, sniff the first paragraph of their entry for Tilapia. Maybe we are about to see whether Wiki momentum can surfeit the vernacular.

The US government also intervened when fish wholesalers wanted to rename the Patagonian Toothfish as Chilean Sea Bass. It’s not a Bass. And the poor Teethfish, like the Slimehead, are now endangered.

Because man’s traditional food fishes have become depleted, we’re having now to make meals of the dregs. And the populations of these deep sea dwellers have less resiliency than the coastal stocks. In the case of the Toothfish and the Slimehead, it’s because they grow very slowly. The Slimehead can grow to be 150 years old. They don’t become sexually reproductive until they are 33, and that’s not in dogfish years. Fishing operations which harvest entire sea mounts decimate every generation at once, leaving none who can spawn.

Would it give you an unsettled feeling to consume something so ancient? If we’re talking a pre-Phylloxera wine, it could be a great thing. But a fish that old has been absorbing mercury from the height of the industrial revolution onwards. So there might be a health benefit for showing deference to your fish elders.

It recently upset me to learn that with modern agriculture we eat cattle before they’re two, when they’re barely adolescent. Now I wonder what’s too old. We revere elephants and tortoises for their longevity, such ancient beings we don’t eat.

I’m old enough to remember learning about the old carp in the fountains of Paris, who also lived quite long. French schoolchildren could marvel that some carp still lived who might have glimpsed Napoleon.

A Slimehead Orange Roughy caught today could have lived in the time of Lincoln. Certainly those fish drag-netted in the 1970s, when the Orange Roughy exotic star was contrived to rise, were contemporaries of John Wilkes Booth. Though swimming many thousand feet below sea level, Roughy might have encountered a fresh shipwreck of Lincoln’s era, carrying gold sent from the west coast to finance the Civil War.

Today finds Americans awaiting their and their fellow man’s emancipation from war, torture, illegal detention, economic enslavement, usury, exploitation, impoverishment, enfeeblement and poisoning. Since just the new millennium Americans learned quick to participate again in their political system. They elected what many thought impossible, an African American president. The voters placed all their hope in Barack Obama, and their faith in party politics foretold that Obama’s majority would deliver the mandate he was given. Obama’s first days were anticipated to rival FDRs. Obama’s legacy could already be measured for laurels because it meant simply reversing the calamity of his predecessor. By such a deliverance alone, it was visualized, Obama would stand beside Abraham Lincoln, America’s greatest president.

Abraham Obama may be an unjustly loft comparison, as wanting to believe Obama deserves the Nobel Peace Prize. But what else was an expectant public to do? They put him in office, they believed his promises. He spoke of change, they wanted change. What swiftly Bush had done, they wanted undone. And Obama assured all that he heard them.

And has it worked out that way? Obama’s speeches begin where the last one ends. They’re long, they’re reasoned, but where at first Americans reveled at a suddenly well-spoken president, now they wish he’d stop talking and start doing. Apparently “yes we can” meant “you can wait” –more likely “hi Mom” or “cheese.” Now the hand which Obama raises so famously to give assurance, is looking more like just the hand.

It may be dawning on many that this junior senator from Illinois didn’t have to debate Frederick Douglas, build a log cabin, read Aristotle by candlelight, or climb a long leadership ladder to get to Washington DC. It may be occurring to them that Obama’s speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, was the only accomplishment they’d seen of this unknown senator from the land of Lincoln.

An Orange Roughy served on fine porcelain may turn out to be the only thing our President Obama shares with Abraham Lincoln.

And very likely, you ate one too. So if stone-carvers are already bidding on the project to add someone’s face to Mount Rushmore, your likeness may be as appropriate as any.

Three meals away from revolution

Brochure from ready.govThe phrase is oft quoted, but no one knows who originated it –or, even if it’s true. It could just be an old pharah’s wives tale. But Obama buys it: from the people who brought you hope.gov we’ve now come to ready.gov. Where the White House assures you there is no need to fear coming plagues and pestilence so long as you “Prepare. Plan. Stay Informed.” and be sure to have food for three days.

Is it three meals or nine? Is the consequence anarchy or revolution? The “truism” is commonly sited as being an old Russian expression, but it’s so pithy, others guess it has a literary source like Dumas. A contemporary scholar placed it back much further:

The Romans believed that civilization is never more than three meals away from anarchy.

Of course, when Stalin or Trotsky are thought to have said it, the dire consequence for civilization is revolution. Which is where the saying catches the popular imagination. Internet sleuths are eager to credit the wisdom to a BBC situation comedy. “[Arnold] Rimmer said it in Red Dwarf.” Although two decades before, Science Fiction authors Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle wrote in Lucifer’s Hammer, that civilization is “only three meals removed from savagery.”

Doubtless in earlier times, you ate well if you could rely on one solid meal every day, which no doubt holds true for the majority of the world still. In the developed nations of course, we cannot see ourselves subsisting on less than three.

The makers of the documentary King Corn interviewed Senator Chuck Grassley about America’s food supply, which is where the expression piqued my interest. Grassley explained: “A society is always nine meals away from a revolution. If you have people going without food for three days and there are enough of them out there, they will revolt.”

Like the “300 pound gorilla” which has now become 900lbs, the units have indexed with man’s inflated prosperity, likewise the vicarious sense that salvation from inequity might come by revolution. A better educated Briton is thought to have coined the nine meals abstraction. At the height of last year’s food crisis, it was recalled that Lord Cameron of Dillington, in his capacity of head of the UK’s Countryside Agency, coined version 2.0 “nine meals from anarchy.”

The distinction between anarchy and revolution was noted by Fredick Upham Adams in 1896, unearthed by Wikiquotes, who speculated on the veracity of the concept:

…I realize that the spirit of liberty does not exist in hungry men. People talked about a day coming when the people would become so hungry and desperate that they would rise in a revolution and sweep all before them. Such a day will never come. Hungry men may fight, but it will be for a bone—not for liberty. The perpetuity of liberty rests with those who eat three square meals a day.

Of course, Maslow would later quantify this with his hierarchy of needs, but I think modern man clings to the revolutionary idyll over anarchy because it gives him imaginary elbow room to believe right could prevail over the totalitarian misrule of the state. For the common man, it grants him reprieve from the likelihood that Orwell was correct to imagine that the future of mankind will be a soldier’s foot on your face forever. For the affluent, thoughts of a revolutionary cleansing assuage their guilt.

But Obama’s crew appears to be taking no chances. They’ve unveiled a website at www.ready.gov which expands on George W. Bush’s plastic and duct tape. Actually, the plastic and duct tape are still there, but at the top Obama wants us to be sure to get our three squares, for three days.

Ready
Prepare. Plan. Stay Informed.

EMERGENCY SUPPLY LIST

Recommended Items to Include in a Basic Emergency Supply Kit:

– Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
– Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
– Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
– Flashlight and extra batteries
– First aid kit
– Whistle to signal for help
– Dust mask, to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
– Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
– Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
– Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)
– Local maps
– Cell phone with chargers

Additional Items to Consider Adding to an Emergency Supply Kit:

– Prescription medications and glasses
– Infant formula and diapers
– Pet food and extra water for your pet
– Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container
– Cash or traveler’s checks and change
– Emergency reference material such as a first aid book or information from www.ready.gov
– Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person. Consider additional bedding if you live in a cold-weather climate.
– Complete change of clothing including a long sleeved shirt, long pants and sturdy shoes. Consider additional clothing if you live in a cold-weather climate.
– Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper – When diluted nine parts water to one part bleach, bleach can be used as a disinfectant. Or in an emergency, you can use it to treat water by using 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.
– Fire Extinguisher
– Matches in a waterproof container
– Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
– Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils, paper towels
– Paper and pencil
– Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children

Through its Ready Campaign, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security educates and empowers Americans to take some simple steps to prepare for and respond to potential emergencies, including natural disasters and terrorist attacks. Ready asks individuals to do three key things: get an emergency supply kit, make a family emergency plan, and be informed about the different types of emergencies that could occur and their appropriate responses.

All Americans should have some basic supplies on hand in order to survive for at least three days if an emergency occurs. Following is a listing of some basic items that every emergency supply kit should include. However, it is important that individuals review this list and consider where they live and the unique needs of their family in order to create an emergency supply kit that will meet these needs. Individuals should also consider having at least two emergency supply kits, one full kit at home and smaller portable kits in their workplace, vehicle or other places they spend time.

Michael Moore CAPITALISM postscript

From Michael Moore: “15 Things Every American Can Do Right Now:”
> Friends, It’s the #1 question I’m constantly asked after people see my movie: “OK — so NOW what can I DO?!” You want something to do? Well, you’ve come to the right place! ‘Cause I got 15 things you and I can do right now to fight back and try to fix this very broken system. Here they are:

FIVE THINGS WE DEMAND THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS DO IMMEDIATELY:

1. Declare a moratorium on all home evictions. Not one more family should be thrown out of their home. The banks must adjust their monthly mortgage payments to be in line with what people’s homes are now truly worth — and what they can afford. Also, it must be stated by law: If you lose your job, you cannot be tossed out of your home.

2. Congress must join the civilized world and expand Medicare For All Americans. A single, nonprofit source must run a universal health care system that covers everyone. Medical bills are now the #1 cause of bankruptcies and evictions in this country. Medicare For All will end this misery. The bill to make this happen is called H.R. 3200. You must call AND write your members of Congress and demand its passage, no compromises allowed.

3. Demand publicly-funded elections and a prohibition on elected officials leaving office and becoming lobbyists. Yes, those very members of Congress who solicit and receive millions of dollars from wealthy interests must vote to remove ALL money from our electoral and legislative process. Tell your members of Congress they must support campaign finance bill H.R.1826.

4. Each of the 50 states must create a state-owned public bank like they have in North Dakota. Then congress MUST reinstate all the strict pre-Reagan regulations on all commercial banks, investment firms, insurance companies — and all the other industries that have been savaged by deregulation: Airlines, the food industry, pharmaceutical companies — you name it. If a company’s primary motive to exist is to make a profit, then it needs a set of stringent rules to live by — and the first rule is “Do no harm.” The second rule: The question must always be asked — “Is this for the common good?” (Click here for some info about the state-owned Bank of North Dakota.)

5. Save this fragile planet and declare that all the energy resources above and beneath the ground are owned collectively by all of us. Just like they do it in Sarah Palin’s socialist Alaska. We only have a few decades of oil left. The public must be the owners and landlords of the natural resources and energy that exists within our borders or we will descend further into corporate anarchy. And when it comes to burning fossil fuels to transport ourselves, we must cease using the internal combustion engine and instruct our auto/transportation companies to rehire our skilled workforce and build mass transit (clean buses, light rail, subways, bullet trains, etc.) and new cars that don’t contribute to climate change. (For more on this, here’s a proposal I wrote in December.) Demand that General Motors’ de facto chairman, Barack Obama, issue a JFK man-on-the-moon-style challenge to turn our country into a nation of trains and buses and subways. For Pete’s sake, people, we were the ones who invented (or perfected) these damn things in the first place!!

FIVE THINGS WE CAN DO TO MAKE CONGRESS AND THE PRESIDENT LISTEN TO US:

1. Each of us must get into the daily habit of taking 5 minutes to make four brief calls: One to the President (202-456-1414), one to your Congressperson (202-224-3121) and one to each of your two Senators (202-224-3121). To find out who represents you, click here. Take just one minute on each of these calls to let them know how you expect them to vote on a particular issue. Let them know you will have no hesitation voting for a primary opponent — or even a candidate from another party — if they don’t do our bidding. Trust me, they will listen. If you have another five minutes, click here to send them each an email. And if you really want to drop an anvil on them, send them a snail mail letter!

2. Take over your local Democratic Party. Remember how much fun you had with all those friends and neighbors working together to get Barack Obama elected? YOU DID THE IMPOSSIBLE. It’s time to re-up! Get everyone back together and go to the monthly meeting of your town or county Democratic Party — and become the majority that runs it! There will not be many in attendance and they will either be happy or in shock that you and the Obama Revolution have entered the room looking like you mean business. President Obama’s agenda will never happen without mass grass roots action — and he won’t feel encouraged to do the right thing if no one has his back, whether it’s to stand with him, or push him in the right direction. When you all become the local Democratic Party, send me a photo of the group and I’ll post it on my website.

3. Recruit someone to run for office who can win in your local elections next year — or, better yet, consider running for office yourself! You don’t have to settle for the incumbent who always expects to win. You can be our next representative! Don’t believe it can happen? Check out these examples of regular citizens who got elected: State Senator Deb Simpson, California State Assemblyman Isadore Hall, Tempe, Arizona City Councilman Corey Woods, Wisconsin State Assemblyman Chris Danou, and Washington State Representative Larry Seaquist. The list goes on and on — and you should be on it!

4. Show up. Picket the local branch of a big bank that took the bailout money. Hold vigils and marches. Consider civil disobedience. Those town hall meetings are open to you, too (and there’s more of us than there are of them!). Make some noise, have some fun, get on the local news. Place “Capitalism Did This” signs on empty foreclosed homes, closed down businesses, crumbling schools and infrastructure. (You can download them from my website.)

5. Start your own media. You. Just you (or you and a couple friends). The mainstream media is owned by corporate America and, with few exceptions, it will never tell the whole truth — so you have to do it! Start a blog! Start a website of real local news (here’s an example: The Michigan Messenger). Tweet your friends and use Facebook to let them know what they need to do politically. The daily papers are dying. If you don’t fill that void, who will?

FIVE THINGS WE SHOULD DO TO PROTECT OURSELVES AND OUR LOVED ONES UNTIL WE GET THROUGH THIS MESS:

1. Take your money out of your bank if it took bailout money and place it in a locally-owned bank or, preferably, a credit union.

2. Get rid of all your credit cards but one — the kind where you have to pay up at the end of the month or you lose your card.

3. Do not invest in the stock market. If you have any extra cash, put it away in a savings account or, if you can, pay down on your mortgage so you can own your home as soon as possible. You can also buy very safe government savings bonds or T-bills. Or just buy your mother some flowers.

4. Unionize your workplace so that you and your coworkers have a say in how your business is run. Here’s how to do it (more info here). Nothing is more American than democracy, and democracy shouldn’t be checked at the door when you enter your workplace. Another way to Americanize your workplace is to turn your business into a worker-owned cooperative. You are not a wage slave. You are a free person, and you giving up eight hours of your life every day to someone else is to be properly compensated and respected.

5. Take care of yourself and your family. Sorry to go all Oprah on you, but she’s right: Find a place of peace in your life and make the choice to be around people who are not full of negativity and cynicism. Look for those who nurture and love. Turn off the TV and the Blackberry and go for a 30-minute walk every day. Eat fruits and vegetables and cut down on anything that has sugar, high fructose corn syrup, white flour or too much sodium (salt) in it (and, as Michael Pollan says, “Eat (real) food, not too much, mostly plants”). Get seven hours of sleep each night and take the time to read a book a month. I know this sounds like I’ve turned into your grandma, but, dammit, take a good hard look at Granny — she’s fit, she’s rested and she knows the names of both of her U.S. Senators without having to Google them. We might do well to listen to her. If we don’t put our own “oxygen mask” on first (as they say on the airplane), we will be of no use to the rest of the nation in enacting any of this action plan!

I’m sure there are many other ideas you can come up with on how we can build this movement. Get creative. Think outside the politics-as-usual box. BE SUBVERSIVE! Think of that local action no one else has tried. Behave as if your life depended on it. Be bold! Try doing something with reckless abandon. It may just liberate you and your community and your nation.

“Not hate, Heritage” and other lies.

Speaking of course, of the Confederate Battle Flag. The “Southern Cross”. Rejected as a candidate for the United States Flag due to its Religious implications (two of the three crosses on the flag, the cross of St Andrew and the cross of St Patrick, half of the four crosses on the Union Jack British flag) being very uncomfortable reminders of the Christian-on-Christian multi-million counts of Murder which led directly in to the Revolution, and in the confusion of battle and especially the thick smoke from black-powder muskets, pistols, rifles and cannon it looked too much like British regimental flags.

The local Wreligious Wrong who dispute the notion that there was any dissent among the “founding fathers” over what Bush called “the bridge between Church and State” gloss over that bit. Truth gets in their way so they ignore it.

Then in the American Civil war, it still was never the official flag of the Confederacy and got to be the Battle Flag simply because it didn’t look like the Stars and Stripes in the aforementioned Smoke from the cannons. That and the Confederacy liked the Religious symbolism and the Racist symbolism (Scots and Irish were, after all, White, and the Rich Rebels wanted to convince the Poor Rebels that they were carrying on some Great Celtic Traditional Struggle) embraced by people who were convinced politically and religiously that there was nothing wrong with Racism or Slavery. And the official Confederate flag, the Stars and Bars, DID look a whole lot like the U.S. flag under battlefield conditions.

Kind of the forebears of the Retardican Tea-Party types who claim that it’s not Hatred of anybody,  just, you know, the natural superiority of the White Race entitled them to hold the Darker races in slavery. Not that the Darker Races were inferior, you know, it’s just that the White Race is better.

See, that kind of “logic” pans out among the Tea-Party type of Mental and Morally Deficient Socially Retarded Animated Sphincters.

So what got me going on this, and really, Southerners acting stupidly and claiming that ALL (real) Southerners are as stupid as they are is a Pet Peeve that’s so familiar to me that I feed it and give it a name, and take it to the vet regularly…

Aside from the Racists of the Tea-Party waving it around and claiming it to be the Flag of Freedom (unless, you know, you happen to be a Slave in which case you’re not Human to their eyes so you don’t count)

Some Retard in the parking lot of King Soopers had a bumper sticker (nothing unusual about that) but this one had the POW propaganda flag along with the Confederate Southern Cross and saying “This Flag would never have left you behind”.

The POW camps run by both the Confederate and Union Armies, for instance, made the worst examples of Nazi or Communist prison camps pale by comparison.

For another “for instance” the North VietNamese actually released the American POWS.

So the POW flag and the Confederate flag being used in conjunction with each other, along with the absurd antics of the Tea-Party wanting to reconstruct the Worst Episodes of American History… creates not merely a double or triple error in twisted logic, but a growing mælstrom of spiral disintegration of Logic that threatens to overwhelm the very nature of Intelligence and Reality, an Event Horizon if you will, so concentrated and dense a Mass of Stupidity that it will suck the entire Universe into a black hole.

Or, a happier possibility, the entire Tea-Party movement might just collapse under their own stupidity.

Che lives in the Florence Supermax

Cuban Five member Antonion Guerrero sketchThursday Oct 8 is Cuba’s Day of the Heroic Guerrilla. By a brilliant coincidence perhaps, Colorado Springs is currently plastered with fliers of the heroic guerrilla himself, smiling from the windows of the least likely businesses, courtesy of the Smokebrush Gallery’s current exhibit. The sketch of Che is by artist/poet Antonio Guerrero, member of the Cuban 5 and inmate 58741-004 of the Florence Supermax. Che’s image has been successfully trivialized as a commercial icon, thanks to the Gap et al, but when Che jumps off the T-shirt, in the incarnation of Hugo Chavez or Evo Morales, the revolution lives.

Sept 11 – America Reaps What It Sows!

A post-911 perspective by Black Liberation Army prisoner of war Jalil Muntaqim.

U.S. International Warfare Initiates World War III Human Rights During Wartime
By Jalil A. Muntaqim

In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, Americans have displayed their true colors of jingoism, a militaristic spirit of nationalism. Similarly, it was witnessed how the people of Iraq rallied in support of their President, Saddam Hussein, after the U.S. bombed to death 250,000 Iraqis, and continued devastation of that country with collateral damage of 1 million dead women and children. Hence, people rallying in support of their government and representatives is a common phenomenon when a country is attacked by an outsider. The U.S. has been foremost in the world extending foreign policy of free-market economy, to the extent of undermining other countries cultures and ideologies expressed as their way of life. Such conflicts inevitably positions the U.S. as the centerpiece, the bulls-eye for international political dissent, as indicated by demonstrations against the U.S. controlled IMF, WTO and World Bank conferences. The attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon did not occur in a vacuum. The people that carried out the attacks were not blind followers or robots with an irrational hatred of the U.S. peoples. Rather, this attack was part of an overall blowback to U.S. imperialist policy in support of zionist Israel and opposition to fundamentalist Islam.

There are essentially three primary world ideologies or world views: the capitalist free-market economy/democracy; the socialist production economy; and Islamic theocratic government, of which has been in competition for many decades. However, in the last 20 years the socialist economies has been severely subverted and co-opted by free-market economies, the ideals of American style democracy. This isolated, for the most part, Islamic theocratic ideology and system of government as the principle target of the U.S. in its quest for world hegemony. This reality of competing world views and economies is further complicated due to religious underpinning of beliefs that motivates actions, especially as they are expressed by U.S. and Western European christianity and Israel zionist judaism in opposition to Islam. From the struggles of the Crusades to the present confrontation, the struggle for ideological supremacy reigns, as the faithful continue to proselytize in the name of the Supreme Being.

When geopolitics are combined with religious fervor in the character of nationalist identity and patriotism, rational and logical thinking is shoved aside as matters of the moment takes historical precedents. It has often been said that “Truth Crush to the Earth Will Rise Again”. Since truth is relative to ones belief, can it be safely said that America has reaped what it has sowed? The American truth of capitalist christian democracy and its imperialist hegemonic aspirations has crushed both socialist and Islamic world views. It has extended its avaricious tentacles as the world police and economic harbinger of all that is beneficent, in stark denial of its history as a purveyor of genocides, slavery and colonial violence.

The U.S. was the first to use biological-germ warfare on people when it distributed blankets infected with smallpox to Native Americans; it has refused to apologize for Afrikan slavery acknowledging it engaged in a crime against humanity requiring reparations; it is the first and only country to use the atomic bomb on the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and intern thousands of Japanese and Italians in this country; it used carpet bombing and defoliates against the peoples of Vietnam; it has initiated embargoes, coup d’etats and assassinations against those it opposes, while propping-up right-wing military dictators; as well as continued military bombing of Vieques. In essence, the U.S. governments hegemonic goals has created the ire of millions of people throughout the world. While domestically, racial profiling, police killing and mass incarceration of Black and Brown people has eroded patriotic sentiments in opposition to white supremacy.

As America weeps and laments its loss, the public find itself joining the torn ranks of those whose heartaches beat opposing U.S. greed and international profiteering. The American public acquiesce to U.S. international folly has cause them to feel the economic pains of those who live daily in poverty. Indeed, Americans should brace for years of economic uncertainty, where the American ideal of freedom and liberty will resemble plight of those who live under the right-wing dictatorships the U.S. has supported. The tyranny suffered by others in the world as a result of U.S. imperialism, has come full circle to visit this country with the wrath of the U.S. own mechanization. Since the U.S. taught and trained right-wing military dictators in the School of the Americas, including the CIA training of Osama bin Laden in the Afghanistan proxy war against the Russians, it will be this same kind of terrorist activist that will be unleashed on American soil, as El-Hajj Malik Shabazz stated after the assassination of John Kennedy, a matter of the chicken coming home to roost. Therefore, American civil liberties and human rights are being garrotted by the yoke of the right-wing in the name of national security. The legalization of U.S. fascism was initiated with the war against political dissent (Cointelpro); the war against organized crime (RICO laws); the war against illegal drugs (plethora of drug laws) and now culminating in the war against terrorism with the American Joint Anti-Terrorist Taskforce and Office of Home Security, further extending police, FBI and CIA powers to undermine domestic civil liberties and human rights.

The U.S. Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, recently stated that the U.S. need to create a new language in defining how to combat terrorism. This Orwellian propaganda in the media espouses the U.S. is venturing in a new type of warfare to defend the American way of life. However, what this double-speak propagates as a long-term and sustained initiative against terrorism is essentially a way of embellishing and enlarging U.S. counter-insurgency activity it has been engaged in since the advent of the Green Berets, Rangers, Delta Force and Navy Seals. The U.S. has been involved in counter-insurgency activity in Afrika, Latin America and Asia for decades. But due to the September 11, 2001, attack on U.S. soil, the government has seized the opportunity to offensively pursue left-wing revolutionaries and Muslim insurgents throughout the world. This U.S. military action extends and substantiates its position as the international police.

Since the establishment of the Trilateral Commission that initiated the process for the development of one world government, the U.S. has broaden its capacity to impose and enforce its will on oppressed peoples globally. The FBI and CIA has been operating in Europe, Afrika, Asia and Latin America establishing the long arm of U.S. law and order. Its bases of operations have conducted surveillance, investigations to arrest, prosecute or neutralize left-wing revolutionaries or Muslim insurgents. As the U.S. consolidates its political and economic influence throughout the world, it will seek to protect its overall hegemonic imperialist goals. After the Gulf War, and the air (bombing) campaign in Yugoslavia, the U.S. has employed its military might to ensure its foreign policy are achieved.

Because NATO has evolved into a European military entity that Russia is seeking to join, today, the U.S. has positioned itself beyond the mission of NATO. The U.S. now concentrates its military might in opposing Islamic countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan, Afghanistan, Philippines, etc.) and those the U.S. deem as rogue nations (North Korea, Vietnam, Cuba, etc.). The new military initiatives will be directed to towards Southeast Asia as the secondary target, as it continues to direct the Middle East conflict to preserve its oil investments and zionist interest. As the U.S. expand its imperialist military mission, as seen with committing military troops in Uzbekistan to also protect oil interest in the Caspian Sea, it has sought to redefine itself by targeting what it identify as the terrorist thereat wherever in the world it might exist. Hence, with the employment of conventional warfare combined with counter-insurgency tactical activities, the U.S. has pronounced itself as the military guardian of the world.

Although, the U.S. states its actions are in its self-interest, in terms of what is euphemistically defined as defending the free world, the truth of the matter is this action is a prelude to evolving one world government with the U.S. as its governing authority. Once the Peoples Republic of China becomes a full member of the WTO, and North Korea and Vietnam has been compromised, with Russia becoming an ally of NATO, the U.S. political-military influence in the world will be consolidated. The U.S. geopolitical strategy is not confined to the present crisis in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attack and targeting Osama bin Laden as the world’s nemesis. Rather, the U.S. strategy is to preserve its capacity to establish one world government as originally envisioned by the Trilateral Commission.

Nonetheless, there are some serious obstacles to this hegemonic goal, of which the world of fundamentalist Islam has become the principle target. Here, it should be noted that Islam condemns suicide or the mass killings of women, children and non-combatant males. Yet, the U.S., Israel, western Europe, Russia, India and China all view Islam as the enemy. Although, there are over 1.2 billion Muslims in the world, the current alliance of economic interest headed by the U.S., are united to vanquish what they consider the growing menace of fundamentalist Islam. It is with this understanding of U.S. geopolitics one is able to comprehend why the U.S. has redefine its military mission, as opposition to globalization and U.S. imperialism metamorph into a political struggle without borders or territorial imperatives.

The ideological struggle between capitalist free-market economy and Islamic theocratic determinates has exploded into an international conflagration of insurgency with the potential of initiating World War III. The Islamic fundamentalist movements throughout the world has the potential to test the U.S. military, political and economic resolve as the world’s leader and authority of an one world government. With over 1.2 billion adherents, Islam has become a formidable foe to contend with for ideological supremacy in the world’s geopolitics. Even without discussing the religious (moral and ethics) aspects that motivates the geopolitics of Islam in opposition to U.S. imperialist hegemony, the call for Jihad/Holy War against the U.S. presents a serious threat that could precipitate WW-III. Therefore, the U.S. find it necessary to redefine its military mission, develop new language to codify warfare and legitimize its international political and economic purpose. Yet, many of the world’s oppressed peoples’ have already experienced U.S. military counter-insurgency tactics (Ethiopia, Somalia, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Chile, Congo, etc.), including parts of the Islamic world. No matter how or why the U.S. attempts to persuade Americans that it is entering a new type of warfare, in reality it is more of the same, only extending the military arena to further protect its authority to establish one world government.

However, the U.S. is not the homogeneous country that people are deluded into believing exist. Rather, the U.S. has been held together due its ability to exploit the world’s resources and distribute (unequally) the profits amongst its citizens with its culture of conspicuous consumption. But, the recent attack on the U.S., and its aftermath may very well lead to the untangling and unraveling of the U.S. fabric as has been witnessed with the USSR and Yugoslavia. In understanding this true history of U.S. imperialism, outside and within its borders, essentially tells a story of why U.S. imperialism has been and will continue to be attacked.

Ultimately, the U.S. will eventually find itself at war with itself, as the ideology of a free democratic society will be found to be a big lie. This is especially disconcerting as greater restrictions on civil and human rights are made into law eroding the First and Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. As during the Vietnam conflict, internal contradictions of racism, poverty and inequality will be exacerbated as a result of the U.S. military campaign and domestic undermining of civil and human rights. It is expected that strife in America will eventually become violent dissolving any semblance of the illusion of America the Beautiful. In anticipation of U.S. progressive activist opposing this claimed war against terrorism, the federal government will pass new laws to severely restrict protest, demonstrations and dissent. In the ’60s, U.S. progressive activists evolved the slogan “Bring the War Home!” – the question is what will be the slogan this time, now that the war has been brought home?

Free the Land!!

Rock Creek Free Press available in COS

The Rock Creek Free Press is available online, but if you want it in print, the DC monthly is available in Colorado Springs at the Bookman, 3163 W. Colorado. The September issue features a speech given by legendary Australian journalist John Pilger on July 4th in San Francisco.

Here’s the RCFP transcript:

Two years ago I spoke at “Socialism in Chicago” about an invisible government which is a term used by Edward Bernays, one the founders of modern propaganda. It was Bernays, who in the 1920s invented public relations as a euphemism for propaganda. And it was Bernays, deploying the ideas of his uncle Sigmund Freud, who campaigned on behalf of the tobacco industry for women to take up smoking as an act of feminist liberation calling cigarettes “tortures of freedom”. At the same time he was involved in the disinformation which was critical in overthrowing the Arbenz government in Guatemala. So you have the association of cigarettes and regime change. The invisible government that Bernays had in mind brought together all media: PR, the press, broadcasting, advertising and their power of branding and image making. In other words, disinformation.

And I suppose I would like to talk today about this invisible government’s most recent achievement, the rise of Barrack Obama and the silencing of much of the left. But all of this has a history, of course and I’d like to go back, take you back some forty years to a sultry and, for me, very memorable day in Viet Nam.

I was a young war correspondent who had just arrived in a village in the Central Highlands called Tuylon. My assignment was to write about a unit of US Marines who had been sent to the village to win hearts and minds. “My orders,” said the Marine Sergeant, “are to sell the American way of liberty, as stated in the Pacification Handbook, this is designed to win the hearts and minds of folks as stated on page 86.” Now, page 86 was headed in capital letters: WHAM (winning hearts and minds). The Marine Unit was a combined action company which explained the Sergeant, meant, “We attack these folks on Mondays and we win their hearts and minds on Tuesdays.” He was joking, of course, but not quite.

The Sergeant, who didn’t speak Vietnamese, had arrived in the village, stood up on a Jeep and said through a bullhorn: “Come on out everybody we’ve got rice and candies and toothbrushes to give you.” This was greeted by silence. “Now listen, either you gooks come on out or we’re going to come right in there and get you!” Now the people of Tuylon finally came out and they stood in line to receive packets of Uncle Ben’s Miracle Rice, Hershey Bars, party balloons, and several thousand toothbrushes. Three portable, battery operated, yellow, flush lavatories were held back for the arrival of the colonel.

And when the colonel arrived that evening, the district chief was summoned and the yellow, flush lavatories unveiled. The colonel cleared his throat and took out a handwritten speech,

“Mr. District Chief and all you nice people,” said the colonel, “what these gifts represent is more than the sum of their parts, they carry the spirit of America. Ladies and gentlemen there’s no place on Earth like America, it’s the land where miracles happen, it’s a guiding light for me and for you. In America, you see, we count ourselves as real lucky as having the greatest democracy the world has ever known and we want you nice people to share in our good fortune.”

Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, even John Winthrope sitting upon a hill got a mention. All that was missing was the Star Bangled Banner playing softly in the background. Of course the villagers had no idea what the colonel was talking about, but when the Marines clapped, they clapped. And when the colonel waved, the children waved. And when he departed the colonel shook the Sergeant’s hand and said: “We’ve got plenty of hearts and minds here, carry on Sergeant.” “Yes Sir.” In Viet Nam I witnessed many scenes like that.

I’d grown up in faraway Australia on a cinematic diet of John Wayne, Randolph Scott, Walt Disney, and Ronald Reagan. The American way of liberty they portrayed might well have been lifted from the WHAM handbook. I’d learned that the United States had won World War II on its own and now led the free world as the chosen society. It was only later when I read Walter Lippmann’s book, Public Opinion, a manual of the invisible government, that I began to understand the power of emotions attached to false ideas and bad histories on a grand scale.

Now, historians call this exceptionalism, the notion that the United States has a divine right to bring what it calls “liberty” to the rest of humanity. Of course this is a very old refrain. The French and British created and celebrated their own civilizing missions while imposing colonial regimes that denied basic civil liberties. However, the power of the American message was, and remains, different. Whereas the Europeans were proud imperialists, Americans are trained to deny their imperialism. As Mexico was conquered and the Marines sent to Nicaragua, American textbooks referred to an Age of Innocence. American motives were always well meaning, moral, exceptional, as the colonel said, “There was no ideology” and that’s still the case.

Americanism is an ideology that is unique because its main feature is its denial that it is an ideology. It’s both conservative and it’s liberal. And it’s right and it’s left. And Barack Obama is its embodiment. Since Obama was elected leading liberals have talked about America returning to its true status as, “a nation of moral ideals”. Those are the words of Paul Krugman, the liberal columnist of The New York Times. In the San Francisco Chronicle, columnist Mark Morford wrote,

“Spiritually advanced people regard the new president as a light worker who can help usher in a new way of being on the planet.”

Tell that to an Afghan child whose family has been blown away by Obama’s bombs. Or a Pakistani child whose house has been visited by one of Obama’s drones. Or a Palestinian child surveying the carnage in Gaza caused by American “smart” weapons, which, disclosed Seymour Hersh, were re-supplied to Israel for use in the slaughter, and I quote; “Only after the Obama team let if be known, it would not object.” The man who stayed silent on Gaza is the man who now condemns Iran.

In a sense, Obama is the myth that is America’s last taboo. His most consistent theme was never “change”, it was power. “The United States,” he said, “leads the world in battling immediate evils and promoting the ultimate good. We must lead by building a 21st century military to ensure the security of our people and advance the security of all people.” And there is this remarkable statement, “At moments of great peril in the past century our leaders ensured that America, by deed and by example, led and lifted the world; that we stood and fought for the freedoms sought by billions of people beyond our borders.” Words like these remind me of the colonel in the village in Viet Nam, as he spun much the same nonsense.

Since 1945, by deed and by example, to use Obama’s words, America has overthrown 50 governments, including democracies, and crushed some 30 liberation movements and bombed countless men, women, and children to death. I’m grateful to Bill Blum for his cataloging of that. And yet, here is the 45th (sic) president of the United States having stacked his government with war mongers and corporate fraudsters and polluters from the Bush and Clinton eras, promising, not only more of the same, but a whole new war in Pakistan. Justified by the murderous clichés of Hilary Clinton, clichés like, “high value targets”. Within three days of his inauguration, Obama was ordering the death of people in faraway countries: Pakistan and Afghanistan. And yet, the peace movement, it seems, is prepared to look the other way and believe that the cool Obama will restore, as Krugman wrote, “the nation of moral ideals.”

Not long ago, I visited the American Museum of History in the celebrated Smithsonian Institute in Washington. One of the most popular exhibitions was called “The Price of Freedom: Americans at War”. It was holiday time and lines of happy people, including many children, shuffled through a Santa’s grotto of war and conquest. When messages about their nation’s great mission were lit up; these included tributes to the; “…exceptional Americans who saved a million lives…” in Viet Nam; where they were, “…determined to stop Communist expansion.” In Iraq other brave Americans, “employed air-strikes of unprecedented precision.” What was shocking was not so much the revisionism of two of the epic crimes of modern times, but the shear scale of omission.

Like all US presidents, Bush and Obama have very much in common. The wars of both presidents and the wars of Clinton and Reagan, Carter and Ford, Nixon and Kennedy are justified by the enduring myth of exceptional America. A myth the late Harold Pinter described as, “a brilliant, witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.”

The clever young man who recently made it to the White House is a very fine hypnotist; partly because it is indeed extraordinary to see an African American at the pinnacle of power in the land of slavery. However, this is the 21st century and race together with gender, and even class, can be very seductive tools of propaganda. For what is so often overlooked and what matters, I believe above all, is the class one serves. George Bush’s inner circle from the State Department to the Supreme Court was perhaps the most multi-racial in presidential history. It was PC par excellence. Think Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell. It was also the most reactionary. Obama’s very presence in the White House appears to reaffirm the moral nation. He’s a marketing dream. But like Calvin Klein or Benetton, he’s a brand that promises something special, something exciting, almost risqué. As if he might be radical. As if he might enact change. He makes people feel good; he’s a post-modern man with no political baggage. And all that’s fake.

In his book, Dreams From My Father, Obama refers to the job he took after he graduated from Columbia in 1983; he describes his employer as, “…a consulting house to multi-national corporations.” For some reason he doesn’t say who his employer was or what he did there. The employer was Business International Corporation; which has a long history of providing cover for the CIA with covert action and infiltrating unions from the left. I know this because it was especially active in my own country, Australia. Obama doesn’t say what he did at Business International and they may be absolutely nothing sinister. But it seems worthy of inquiry, and debate, as a clue to, perhaps, who the man is.

During his brief period in the senate, Obama voted to continue the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He voted for the Patriot Act. He refused to support a bill for single payer health care. He supported the death penalty. As a presidential candidate he received more corporate backing than John McCain. He promised to close Guantanamo as a priority, but instead he has excused torture, reinstated military commissions, kept the Bush gulag intact, and opposed habeas corpus.

Daniel Ellsberg, the great whistleblower, was right, I believe, when he said, that under Bush a military coup had taken place in the United States giving the Pentagon unprecedented powers. These powers have been reinforced by the presence of Robert Gates – a Bush family crony and George W. Bush’s powerful Secretary of Defense. And by all the Bush Pentagon officials and generals who have kept their jobs under Obama.

In the middle of a recession, with millions of Americans losing their jobs and homes, Obama has increased the military budget. In Colombia he is planning to spend 46 million dollars on a new military base that will support a regime backed by death squads and further the tragic history of Washington’s intervention in that region.

In a pseudo-event in Prague, Obama promised a world without nuclear weapons to a global audience, mostly unaware that America is building new tactical nuclear weapons designed to blur the distinction between nuclear and conventional war. Like George Bush, he used the absurdity of Europe threatened by Iran to justify building a missile system aimed at Russia and China. In another pseudo-event, at the Annapolis Naval Academy, decked with flags and uniforms, Obama lied that America had gone to Iraq to bring freedom to that country. He announced that the troops were coming home. This was another deception. The head of the army, General George Casey says, with some authority, that America will be in Iraq for up to a decade. Other generals say fifteen years.

Chris Hedges, the very fine author of Empire of Illusion, puts it very well; “President Obama,” he wrote, “does one thing and brand Obama gets you to believe another.” This is the essence of successful advertising. You buy or do what the advertiser wants because of how they make you feel. And so you are kept in a perpetual state of childishness. He calls this “junk politics”.

But I think the real tragedy is that Obama, the brand, appears to have crippled or absorbed much of the anti-war movement – the peace movement. Out of 256 Democrats in Congress; 30, just 30, are willing to stand up against Obama’s and Nancy Pelosi’s war party. On June the 16th they voted for 106 billion dollars for more war.

The “Out of Iraq” caucus is out of action. Its member can’t even come up with a form of words of why they are silent. On March the 21st, a demonstration at the Pentagon by the once mighty United for Peace and Justice drew only a few thousand. The out-going president of UFPJ, Lesley Kagen, says her people aren’t turning up because, “It’s enough for many of them that Obama has a plan to end the war and that things are moving in the right direction.” And where is the mighty Move On, these days? Where is its campaign against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? And what, exactly, was said when Move On’s executive director, Jason Ruben, met Barack Obama at the White House in February?

Yes, a lot of good people mobilized for Obama. But what did they demand of him? Working to elect the Democratic presidential candidate may seem like activism, but it isn’t. Activism doesn’t give up. Activism doesn’t fall silent. Activism doesn’t rely on the opiate of hope. Woody Allen once said, “I felt a lot better when I gave up hope.” Real activism has little time for identity politics which like exceptionalism, can be fake. These are distractions that confuse and sucker good people. And not only in the United States, I can assure you.

I write for the Italian socialist newspaper, Il Manifesto, or rather I used to write for it. In February I sent the editor an article which raised questions about Obama as a progressive force. The article was rejected. Why, I asked? “For the moment,” wrote the editor, “we prefer to maintain a more positive approach to the novelty presented by Obama. We will take on specific issues, but we would not like to say that he will make no difference.” In other words, an American president drafted to promote the most rapacious system in history, is ordained and depoliticized by important sections of the left. It’s a remarkable situation. Remarkable, because those on the, so called, Radical Left have never been more aware, more conscious of the inequities of power. The Green Movement, for example, has raised the consciousness of millions, so that almost every child knows something about global warming. And yet, there seems to be a resistance, within the Green Movement, to the notion of power as a military force, a military project. And perhaps similar observations can also be made about sections of the Feminist Movement and the Gay Movement and certainly the Union Movement.

One of my favorite quotations is from Milan Kundera,

“The struggle of people against power is [the] struggle of memory against forgetting.”

We should never forget that the primary goal of great power is to distract and limit our natural desire for social justice and equity and real democracy.

Long ago Edward Bernays’ invisible government of propaganda elevated big business from its unpopular status as a kind of mafia to that of a patriotic driving force. The “American way of life” began as an advertising slogan. The modern image of Santa Claus was an invention of Coca Cola.

Today we are presented with an extraordinary opportunity. Thanks to the crash of Wall Street and the revelation, for many ordinary people, that the free market has nothing to do with freedom. The opportunity, within our grasp, is to recognize that something is stirring in America that is unfamiliar, perhaps, to many of us on the left, but is related to a great popular movement that’s growing all over the world. Look down at Latin America, less than twenty years ago there was the usual despair, the usual divisions of poverty and freedom, the usual thugs in uniforms running unspeakable regimes. Today for the first time perhaps in 500 years there’s a people’s movement based on the revival of indigenous cultures and language, a genuine populism. The recent amazing achievements in Bolivia, Ecuador, Venezuela, El Salvador, Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay represent a struggle for community and political rights that is truly historic, with implications for all of us. The successes in Latin America are expressed perversely in the recent overthrow of the government of Honduras, because the smaller the country, the greater is the threat of a good example that the disease of emancipation will spread.

Indeed, right across the world social movements and grass roots organization have emerged to fight free market dogma. They’ve educated governments in the south that food for export is a problem, rather than a solution to global poverty. They’ve politicized ordinary people to stand up for their rights, as in the Philippines and South Africa. Look at the remarkable boycott, disinvestment and sanctions campaign, BDS, for short, aimed at Israel that’s sweeping the world. Israeli ships have been turned away from South Africa and Western Australia. A French company has been forced to abandon plans to build a railway connecting Jerusalem with illegal Israeli settlements. Israeli sporting bodies find themselves isolated. Universities in the United Kingdom have begun to sever ties with Israel. This is how apartheid South Africa was defeated. And this is how the great wind of the 1960s began to blow. And this is how every gain has been won: the end of slavery, universal suffrage, workers rights, civil rights, environmental protection, the list goes on and on.

And that brings us back, here, to the United States, because I believe something is stirring in this country. Are we aware, that in the last eight months millions of angry e-mails, sent by ordinary Americans, have flooded Washington. And I mean millions. People are outright outraged that their lives are attacked; they bear no resemblance to the passive mass presented by the media. Look at the polls; more than 2/3 of Americans say the government should care for those who cannot care for themselves, sixty-four percent would pay higher taxes to guarantee health care for everyone, sixty percent are favorable towards Unions, seventy percent want nuclear disarmament, seventy-two percent want the US completely out of Iraq and so on and so on. But where is much of the left? Where is the social justice movement? Where is the peace movement? Where is the civil rights movement? Ordinary Americans, for too long, have been misrepresented by stereotypes that are contemptuous. James Madison referred to his compatriots in the public as ignorant and meddlesome outsiders. And this contempt is probably as strong today, among the elite, as it was back then. That’s why the progressive attitudes of the public are seldom reported in the media, because they’re not ignorant, they’re subversive, they’re informed and they’re even anti-American. I once asked a friend, the great American war correspondent and humanitarian, Martha Gellhorn, to explain the term “anti-American” to me. “I’ll tell you what anti-American is,” she said in her forceful way, “its what governments and their vested interests call those who honor America by objecting to war and the theft of resources and believing in all of humanity. There are millions of these anti-Americans in the United States, they are ordinary people who belong to no elite and who judge their government in moral terms though they would call it common decency. They are not vain; they are the people with a waitful conscience, the best of America’s citizens. Sure, they disappear from view now and then, but they are like seeds beneath the snow. I would say they are truly exceptional.” Truly exceptional, I like that.

My own guess is that a populism is growing, once again in America evoking a powerful force beneath the surface which has a proud history. From such authentic grass roots Americanism came women suffrage, the eight hour day, graduated income tax, public ownership of railways and communications, the breaking of the power of corporate lobbyists and much more. In other words, real democracy. The American populists were far from perfect, but they often spoke for ordinary people and they were betrayed by leaders who urged them to compromise and merge with the Democratic Party. That was long ago, but how familiar it sounds. My guess is that something is coming again. The signs are there. Noam Chomsky is right when he says that, “Mere sparks can ignite a popular movement that may seem dormant.” No one predicted 1968, no one predicted the fall of apartheid, or the Berlin Wall, or the civil rights movement, or the great Latino rising of a few years ago.

I suggest that we take Woody Allen’s advice and give up on hope and listen, instead, to voices from below. What Obama and the bankers and the generals and the IMF and the CIA and CNN and BBC fear, is ordinary people coming together and acting together. It’s a fear as old as democracy, a fear that suddenly people convert their anger to action as they’ve done so often throughout history.

“At a time of universal deceit,” wrote George Orwell, “telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”

Thank you.

the food revolution starts here. only the healthy will survive.

food incThere is a spate of recent films spilling the beans about the corporate takeover of the global food economy. Many are available online or through Amazon and Netflix.
 
Please watch some of these. Show your kids. Host a screening in your community. Donate a copy or two to the local library or public school system. Encourage teachers to show the films. Spread the word! Subvert the dominant food paradigm! Refuse to play along anymore!

Food, Inc., the first enviro-food movie to be screened in major theaters across the country, has brought food consciousness in the United States to a new level.

Fresh: The Movie is the perfect follow-up screening to Food, Inc. because it shows the flip side—positive change being created by farmers, students, thinkers, and business people in the U.S. today.

French Fries to Go documents Telluride, Colorado’s quest to run city buses on recycled fryer oil.

Garden Cycles: Faces From the New Farm is the story of three women on a three-month bicycle-powered tour of urban gardens throughout the Northeast.

Polycultures: Food Where We Live looks at communities in Northeast Ohio that are coming together to grow a more sustainable, just, and local food system.

The Greening of Southie is about Boston’s first LEED-certified residential green building and the way it affected a community.

Eating Alaska is a documentary by a vegetarian filmmaker who moves to Alaska and marries a hunter. The film looks at the ethics behind food choices and how politics, society, religion, and taste all play a role.

Sustainable Table: What’s on Your Plate? traces West Coast food production from field to table.

To Market to Market to Buy a Fat Pig tours outstanding farmers’ markets from Baltimore to Hawaii.

The Real Dirt of Farmer John looks at one man and his family farm. Farmer John and his story will have you reconsidering stereotypes about farmers.

The Garden examines the largest community garden in the U.S., 14 acres of green in South Central Los Angeles, and the fight to keep it there.

The World According to Monsanto looks at this behemoth of a multinational agricultural biotech corporation and their dominance of patents on genetically engineered seeds and pesticides.

Seeds of Deception focuses on how genetically engineered food is making its way into our daily diets.

Bad Seed: The Truth About Our Food looks at who is controlling the world’s food supply and the consequences of genetically modified food on health.

The Future of Food examines the complex web of market and political forces that affect what we eat and what we will eat in the future.

Food Matters takes a look at the often overlooked connection between food and our nation’s current state of health. With the health-care debate raging, watching this film feels extra-timely and important.

King Corn investigates the staggering scale of the corn related food economy in the U.S. in an entertaining way. While you’re at it check out Carey’s two part quest to go corn free.

Two Angry Moms shows two angry (and awesome) moms striving to improve school lunch with simple changes, like having fresh fruits and vegetables included on cafeteria trays.

Our Daily Bread is shot like a high end art-house film sand hows minute after minute of shocking footage of industrial food production and high-tech farming.

Super Size Me now feels like a classic among all these newer films. Watch as Morgan Spurlock spends 30 days eating nothing but McDonald’s while investigating the companies’ extremely long reach into school cafeterias and countries around the world.

Media That Matters: Good Food is a collection of 16 short films on food and sustainability.

The Greenhorns is an upcoming film on enterprising, hopeful, and young farmers that are bringing an infusion of youth and a wave of excitement to the one of the oldest professions of all.

The End of the Line chronicles how demand for cod off the coast of Newfoundland in the early 1990s led to the decimation of the most abundant cod population in the world, how hi-tech fishing vessels leave no escape routes for fish populations and how farmed fish as a solution is a myth.

Mondovino explores the impact of globalization on the various wine-producing regions. It pits the ambitions of large, multinational wine producers, in particular Robert Mondavi, against the small, single estate wineries who have traditionally boasted wines with individual character driven by their terroir.

We Feed the World is a film by Austrian filmmaker Erwin Wagenhofer about food and globalization, fishermen and farmers, long-distance truck drivers and high-powered corporate executives, the flow of goods and cash flow – a film about scarcity amid plenty.

McLibel is a story of two activists who took on McDonald’s in the longest trial in English history. They won.

The Cove follows a team of activists and filmmakers as they infiltrate a heavily-guarded cove in Taiji, Japan where more than 20,000 dolphins and porpoises are being slaughtered each year and their meat, containing toxic levels of mercury, is being sold as food in Japan, often times labeled as whale meat.

The Power of Community – How Cuba Survived Peak Oil tells the story of the Cuban people’s efforts to feed the population and create a low-energy society after losing access to Soviet oil in the 1990s.

Information from the Serious Eats website. Thank you, Serious Eats!

From whence shines that Bat Signal?

iran bat signalIt’s a droll cartoon, calling Twitter to the rescue. But I believe MARSDEN got the metropolis wrong. It’s Paris, London or Amsterdam, and French and English diplomats are in an Iranian court today because Tehran suspects the Green Revolutionists are being stirred up from points international.

 
The telecommunications companies could clear this up, if they weren’t themselves eager to reform Iran’s economy to favor capitalism unfettered by Islamic morality.

The US antiwar community in particular is split on whether to play along with the charade. Secular freedoms are good, but are there real verifiable indications that Iran’s populace wants them? On the one side, the Campaign for Peace and Democracy is cracking the whip to keep the usual pacifists in line. They’ve issued talking points to refute criticisms that the CPD effort in Pax Americana disguised.

Here are their straw questions:

1. Was the June 12, 2009 election fair?

2. Isn’t it true that the Guardian Council is indirectly elected by the Iranian people?

3. Was there fraud, and was it on a scale to alter the outcome?

4. Didn’t a poll conducted by U.S.-based organizations conclude that Ahmadinejad won the election?

5. Didn’t Ahmadinejad get lots of votes from conservative religious Iranians among the rural population and the urban poor? Might not these votes have been enough to overwhelm his opponents?

6. Hasn’t the U.S. (and Israel) been interfering in Iran and promoting regime change, including by means of supporting all sorts of “pro-democracy” groups?

7. Has the Western media been biased against the Iranian government?

8. Is Mousavi a leftist? A neoliberal? What is the relation between Mousavi and the demonstrators in the streets?

9. Is Ahmadinejad good for world anti-imperialism?

10. Is Ahmadinejad more progressive than his opponents in terms of social and economic policy? Is he a champion of the Iranian poor?

11. What do we want the U.S. government to do about the current situation in Iran?

12. What should we do about the current situation in Iran?

13. Is it right to advocate a different form of government in Iran?

The response to question one is amusing:

1. Was the June 12, 2009 election fair?

Even if every vote was counted fairly, this was not a fair election. 475 people wished to run for president, but the un-elected Guardian Council, which vets all candidates for supposed conformity to Islamic principles, rejected all but 4.

Free elections also require free press, free expression, and freedom to organize, all of which have been severely curtailed.”

Now, can they say the exact same thing about US elections? But they haven’t, nor have the CPD addressed Peace and Democracy issues anywhere but Iran.

Taking the admittedly lonely side is the Monthly Review, where academic Edward Herman can easily parry the CPD’s rationalizations.

Didn’t it used to be illegal to spend government monies to propagandize the American public? Someone wants a war with Iran, and their using do-gooder grass-roots to sell it.

US journalists! Visit scenic Kurdistan!

Sulaimania Sulaimaniya Kurdistan Iraq Irak
US media correspondents, reporters, tv anchors and news directors, get yourselves to scenic Kurdistan asap, visit the mountains of Sulaimania, the waterfalls of Ahmed Awa are apparently recommended. Embeds, lead the way! It may be the only way all you war propagandists will reap what you so justly deserve.

I can’t imagine there’s a single corporate media journalist who wouldn’t be hard pressed to defend the pro-war filter he or she puts on the news for US domestic consumption. Corporate tools? They’re military industrial pitchmen. Advocating death and dismemberment without restraint. Let them plead ignorance. Bullshit. I’d love to see Bill Clinton make a case for all of them.

Antiwar voices are split on whether to charge MSM collaborators for war crimes, for selling the Anglo world on patently illegal wars. But how else are we to be rid of them? America remains locked in a Vulcan mind meld with these impudent, immoral careerists. Perhaps apprehension by the Iranians, and a trial by revolutionary council, is the only justice they might ever meet. Dispatch them to Kurdistan: Assignment Iran! Let the Persians teach Americans the only way to deal with poisonous snakes.

The media song now, to spin the recent errant three in the best light, is that Kurdistan was not an unthinkable destination for tourists such as they, and perfectly safe too. Unless you venture toward the Iran border, where US commandos have been raiding Iranian infrastructure, while the US Navy taunts the Iranian coast in full force. Alas, Kurdistan, quite happy with its undeclared sovereignty from Iraq, has proven to be a safe haven for Anglos.

I remember a most heartbreaking scene from the first month of the war, recorded by an independent American photographer as he worked his way through Kurdistan. Perhaps you recall it.

Do I mean the friendly fire, or accidental, I’m not sure which to put in quotes, bombing which killed coalition troops, but also took out a Kurd ally who may have turned out to rival a more favored ally? No, not that one.

Our photographer was making his second entry into Iraq as I recall, and documented a personal incident thus. He was traveling with a Kurd escort, when an Iraqi combatant broke through with a grenade, determined to blow himself up next to the American.

And I should clarify, I was not rooting against the photographer, but– here’s what happened.

The Iraqi was being held off by a Kurd fighter, but he had pulled the pin on the grenade, and leaned against his opponent, dooming both of them if the Kurd dared to shoot him. The scene unfolded in the progression of stills the photographer snapped as he hastened away. The Iraqi was chest to chest with the Kurd, pleading to be let to get the American. I interpreted his entreaties to say: Brother let me pass, I must reach the American, I have no quarrel with you, let me die with the infidel. The Kurd seemed for a moment to consider the words of his Iraqi brother. American deaths counts many hundred fold, we are brothers fighting the American aggressors, I have committed to die for this act, help me, please let me just reach him.

I could be wrong, he may have been cursing the filthy Kurd for blocking his way. But his locked eyes and sweated brow reflected an earnest human being.

I cannot be sure how long this went on, but the Kurd kept the desperate man at bay, and as soon as the Kurd had wrestled control of the grenade, he shot the would-be assassin point black. The Iraqi fell unceremoniously into the tall weeds. The last image showed his body collapsed in the ditch beside the road. The photographer and his Kurd entourage moved on.

There were honest, unembedded journalists in the early stages of the war. A record number were killed by the US military until none report independently anymore. Journalists working for foreign news agencies are detained in secret US prisons, under the same pretext that we protest of Iran or North Korea.

If we do not have the resolve to string up these blood-thirsty yellow journalists, promulgating lies to justify the continued slaughter of countless innocents, let the Iranians have at them.

Georgian Saakashvili, the anti Putin

Putin
He rode to power on a CIA/USAID/CPD-backed colored revolution (Georgia’s was Rose), he invaded South Ossetia at NATO’s prompting, but Mikheil Saakashvili startled when Russian tanks immediately took it back, and the Georgian president hasn’t stopped screaming for western support. He’s still fretting over something the Russian Prime Minister had uttered during that engagement.

Didn’t it seem, last August, that Saakashvili wanted to give Georgia back and return to his safe American home? He dared let US special ops advisers give Georgian soldiers insurgency training, but when the people of South Ossetia resisted falling into the sphere of western oil interests, Saakashvili went crying to mommy.

There is probably no denying that Russia will not abide a US puppet playing host to western terrorist subversives at its border. But Putin has been mum on the matter, choosing instead to parade about shirtless. We’re laughing at the Fabio act, but Putin’s foe in Georgia is shaking like he anticipates the pig scene from Deliverance in his future.

Saakashvili is raising the alarm, explaining Georgia’s vulnerability. Says he, “Putin has to break our neck. He has to fulfill his solemn pledge to hang me by a certain part of the body.”

Last year, during talks to end the conflict in South Ossetia, Putin had told French President Sarkozy that he wanted to hang Saakashvili “by the balls.”

Has the US no better contender to foist upon the newly westernized Georgians than sissy Saakashvili? They should have auditioned candidates with their shirts off.

The Spirit of Revolt

There are periods in the life of human society when revolution becomes an imperative necessity, when it proclaims itself as inevitable. New ideas germinate everywhere, seeking to force their way into the light, to find an application in life. These ideas are opposed by the inertia of those whose interest it is to maintain the old order; they suffocate in the stifling atmosphere of prejudice and traditions. The accepted ideas of the constitution of the state, of the laws of social equilibrium, of the political and economic interrelations of citizens, can hold out no longer against the implacable criticism which is daily undermining them?…?Political, economic and social institutions are crumbling. The social structure, having become uninhabitable, is hindering, even preventing, the development of seeds which are being propagated within its damaged walls and being brought forth around them.

The need for a new life becomes apparent. The code of established morality, that which governs the greater number of people in their daily life, no longer seems sufficient. What formerly seems just is now felt to be a crying injustice. The morality of yesterday is today recognized as revolting immorality. The conflict between new ideas and old traditions flames up in every class of society?…?the popular conscience rises up against the scandals which breed amidst the privileged and leisured, against the crimes committed in the name of “the law of the stronger,” or in order to maintain these privileges. Those who long for the triumph of justice, those who would put new ideas into practice, are soon forced to recognize that the realization of their generous, humanitarian and regenerating ideas cannot take place in a society thus constituted. They perceive the necessity of a revolutionary whirlwind which will sweep away all this rottenness, revive sluggish hearts with its breath and bring to mankind that spirit of devotion, self-denial and heroism, without which society sinks through degradation and vileness into complete disintegration.

In periods of frenzied haste toward wealth, of feverish speculation and of crisis, of the sudden downfall of great industries and the ephemeral expansion of other branches of production, of scandalous fortunes amassed in a few years and dissipated as quickly, it becomes evident that the economic institutions which control production and exchange are far from giving to society the prosperity which they are supposed to guarantee. They produce precisely the opposite result. Instead of order they bring forth chaos; instead of prosperity, poverty and insecurity; instead of reconciled interests, war – a perpetual war of the exploiter against the worker, of exploiters and of workers among themselves. Human society is seen to be splitting more and more into two hostile camps, and at the same time to be subdividing into thousands of small groups waging merciless war against each other. Weary of these wars, weary of the miseries which they cause, society rushes to seek a new organization. It clamors loudly for a complete remodeling of the system of property ownership, of production, of exchange all economic relations which spring from it.

The machinery of government, entrusted with the maintenance of the existing order, continues to function, but at every turn of its deteriorated gears, it slips and stops. Its working becomes more and more difficult, and the dissatisfaction caused by its defects grows continuously. Every day gives rise to a new demand. “Reform this,” “Reform that,” is heard from all sides. “War, finance, taxes, courts, police, everything would have to be remodeled, reorganized, established on a new basis,” say the reformers. And yet all know that it is impossible to make things over, to remodel anything at all because everything is interrelated; everything would have to be remade at once. And how can society be remodeled when it is divided into two openly hostile camps? To satisfy the discontented would be only to create new malcontents.

Incapable of undertaking reforms, since this would mean paving the way for revolution, and at the same time too impotent to be frankly reactionary, the governing bodies apply themselves to half-measures which can satisfy nobody, and only cause new dissatisfaction. The mediocrities who, in such transition periods, undertake to steer the ship of state, think of but one thing: to enrich themselves against the coming debacle. Attacked from all sides they defend themselves awkwardly, they evade, they commit blunder upon blunder and they soon succeed in cutting the last rope of salvation. They drown the prestige of the government in ridicule, caused by their own incapacity.

Such periods demand revolution. It becomes a social necessity; the situation itself is revolutionary.

When we study in the works of our greatest historians the genesis and development of vast revolutionary convulsions, we generally find under the heading “The Cause of the Revolution” a gripping picture of the situation on the eve of events. The misery of the people, the general insecurity, the vexatious measures of the government, the odious scandals laying bare the immense vices of society, the new ideas struggling to come to the surface and repulsed by the incapacity of the supporters of the former regime – nothing is omitted. Examining this picture, one arrives at the conviction that the revolution was indeed inevitable, and that there was no other way out than by the road of insurrection?…?But, between this pacific arguing and insurrection or revolt, there is a wide abyss – that abyss which, for the greatest part of humanity, lies between reasoning and action, thought and the will to act. How has this abyss been bridged??…?How was it that words, so often spoken and lost in the air like the empty chiming of bells, were changed in actions?

The answer is easy. Action. The continuous action, ceaselessly renewed, of minorities brings about this transformation. Courage, devotion, the spirit of sacrifice, are as contagious as cowardice, submission and panic.

What forms will this action take? All forms – indeed, the most varied forms, dictated by circumstances, temperament and the means at disposal. Sometimes tragic, sometimes humorous, but always daring; sometimes collective, sometimes purely individual, this policy of action will neglect none of the means at hand, no event of public life, in order to keep the spirit alive, to propagate and find expression for dissatisfaction, to excite hatred against exploiters, to ridicule the government and expose its weakness and above all and always, by actual example, to awaken courage and fan the spirit of revolt.

When a revolutionary situation arises in a country, before the spirit of revolt is sufficiently awakened in the masses to express itself in violent demonstrations in the streets or by rebellions and uprisings, it is through action that minorities succeed in awakening that feeling of independence and that spirit of audacity without which no revolution can come to a head.

Men of courage, not satisfied with words, but ever searching for the means to transform them into action – men of integrity for whom the act is one with the idea, for whom prison, exile and death are preferable to a life contrary to their principles, intrepid souls who know that it is necessary to dare in order to succeed – these are the lonely sentinels who enter the battle long before the masses are sufficiently roused to raise openly the banner of insurrection and to march, arms in hand, to the conquest of their rights?…?Whoever has a slight knowledge of history and a fairly clear head knows perfectly well from the beginning that theoretical propaganda for revolution will necessarily express itself in action long before the theoreticians have decided that the moment to act has come.

Nevertheless the cautious theoreticians are angry at these madmen, they excommunicate them, they anathematize them. But the madmen win sympathy, the mass of the people secretly applaud their courage and they find imitators?…?Acts of illegal protest, of revolt, of vengeance, multiply.

Indifference from this point on is impossible?…?By actions which compel general attention, the new idea seeps into people’s minds and wins converts?…?Above all, it awakens the spirit of the revolt: it breeds daring?…?The people observe that the monster is not so terrible as they thought; they begin dimly to perceive that a few energetic efforts will be sufficient to throw it down. Hope is born in their hearts, and let us remember that if exasperation often drives men to revolt, it is always hope – the hope of victory – which makes revolutions.

The government resists; it is savage in its repressions. But, though formerly persecution killed the energy of the oppressed, now, in periods of excitement, it produces the opposite result. It provokes new acts of revolt, individual and collective. It drives the rebels to heroism, and in rapid succession these acts spread, become general, develop. The revolutionary party is strengthened by elements, which up to this time were hostile or indifferent to it. The general disintegration penetrates into the government, the ruling classes, the privileged. Some of them advocate resistance to the limit; others are in favor of concessions; others, again, go so far as to declare themselves ready to renounce their privileges for the moment, in order to appease the spirit of revolt, hoping to dominate again later on. The unity of the government and the privileged class is broken.

The ruling class may also try to find safety in savage reaction. But it is now too late; the battle only becomes more bitter, more terrible, and the revolution which is looming will only be more bloody. On the other hand, the smallest concession of the governing classes, since it comes too late, since it has been snatched in struggle, only awakes the revolutionary spirit still more. The common people, who formerly would have been satisfied with the smallest concession, observe now that the enemy is wavering. They foresee victory, they feel their courage growing, and the same men who were formerly crushed by misery and were content to sigh in secret, now lift their heads and march proudly to the conquest of a better future.

Finally, the revolution breaks out, the more terrible as the preceding struggles were bitter.

The Spirit of Revolt, Pyotr Kropotkin, 1880.

Lessons from antiwar antecedents

peace nowI have for several weeks been submerged in the writings and poster art of the revolutionary sixties, and I’ll catch my breath to say this to the Antiwar Now from the Anti-Imperialists Then. We won no victory with the fall of Saigon, the Vietnam War wasn’t ended by protests, bombs, or the fragging of front line officers. The portend is good for those hoping to see the end of the War on Islam, but on the whole it is not.

The conflict in Vietnam ended when the ammunition ran out. The military industry spent its wad as it earned its wad. Lucrative mission accomplished. Gun nut thrillcraft ride over. American public opinion turned against the mass killing, the funding dried up, and the hawks receded with their loot.

Then public attention diverted to more selfish worries. The economy. An energy crisis. A surge of concern for a death spiral into environmental disaster. Does this sound familiar? FUCKING A!

Legitimate concerns all, then and now. The problems remain the same. Just as American imperialism will persist unabated. Scholars might say after Vietnam, American militarism had to be tempered, such that the US was compelled to conduct its counter-insurgency genocides by more discrete means.

Like the Red, White and Blue ordnance jamboree of Southeast Asia, the US-Islam War will expend itself. But the war of the capitalist white against indigenous brown will continue unless the Western populations step up to a serious rise in consciousness. Not a higher spiritual conscience, but an honest self-assessment of First-World selfishness.

Who killed Neda Agha-Soltan?

neda soltaniThe video footage is shocking. An attractive young woman watching the demonstrations in Tehran is struck by a sniper’s bullet and dies before several video cameras. The tragedy is projected unto Facebook and Youtube, with advocates hoping it will galvanize (American) public support for the brave reform movement in Iran. News accounts blame “Basij snipers” on the rooftops. Other protesters have been killed in confrontations with Iranian riot police, without the benefit of video witnesses, much like two million Iraqis, Afghans, Pakistanis et al. Poor 27-year-old bystander Neda Soltani stood at the quite improbable convergence of bullet and camera –correction– cameras. I don’t have to suggest the scene was staged; whether or not the triggerman was an American is immaterial.

Think about just the improbability of your seeing this video. When was the last time the mainstream press has circulated a snuff film? The average person is embarrassed to watch a person die. It’s exploitive. Even when America was fixated on beheaded hostages, our television gatekeepers refused to broadcast the footage. Many horrific war killing moments have found their way unto Youtube, which antiwar activists could only hope would find wider distribution, if only to bring home the inhumanity of our soldiers’ deeds. It never happens.

The western press is running with this story because it demonizes the apparently naked inhumanity of Islam. Muslims stone women, hang gays, look: the bastards shoot their own people arbitrarily. Curiously our media doesn’t make hay with the hapless victims of US snipers.

neda salehi agha soltanThe Neda Soltani snuff footage hit internet shores prepackaged with a smiling mug, and a name that translated means “the voice.” Could a casting director have picked a better title character to represent Iran’s repressed? The western press is even poised to outdo the Muslims in indignant piety, already lauding Neda as a martyr, whom we are informed should launch a thousand Shiite funeral processions. Western pundits compare Neda to the first Shiite martyr, the grandson of Mohammed himself.

Of course, also showing excessive Islamic sensitivity, western reporters readily dismiss the vanishing of Neda’s body, to the Muslim tradition of hasty burials. For the record, in case you missed it, Neda dies onscreen from an apparent gunshot. We do not see the bullet strike, nor now can anyone habeas corpus.

If the scenario was acted entirely, given the success with which the girl’s face is being made into an icon, young Neda’s life is probably as utterly expendable now as already depicted. You think you’re mourning Neda now, imagine her fate if this is a hoax.

OR the gunman could just as well have been a US black-op hit-man who had his eye on the videographers approaching innocent Neda. The US military has long admitted that special forces are already operating in Iran. If the Iranian forces are shooting civilian protesters, what’s the harm of helping them out where there’s a camera ready?

When we’re not meant to see it, the soldiers shoot the cameramen too.

It could be the work of Moussavi henchmen, who are our henchmen.

The Green Revolution, or TwitterTM Revolution, rebranded a “Social Media Revolution,” is a fabrication of the US pro-democracy agents working to destabilize Iran. They are hard at work in Cuba, in Venezuela, in Bolivia, and everywhere regimes threaten US globalization by enslavement. Remember the Orange Revolution? Any movement that is color-coded is the work of organizers reading US how-to manuals or attending OTPOR training seminars.

Where are the international voices decrying election fraud in Iran? No one other than the US and its stooges is asserting that populist leader Ahmadinejad did not win by a landslide. Only Iran’s urban middle class has taken to the streets of Tehran. And to protest what? Their minority standing in Iran?

The reformists in Iran are protesting democracy, not the failure of democracy. They are protesting Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s hard line against irreligious western economic and colonial policies which traditionally benefit the secular urban elite. “Pro-Democracy” is neoliberal for pro-capitalist plunder.

See: Shah’s Son Backs Iranian Protesters.

Like the “dissidents” of Cuba, the Green greenback-seekers are marching on the CIA’s dime, and being meted the fate of foreign provocateurs. I have no doubt the majority are idealists and are well-intended, but like the Kurds who rose against Saddam Hussein, the US has set them up for slaughter, the sooner to motivate western support for military aggression against their evil regime.

Our media pundits point out that the protest banners are written in English, a sign that the Iranians are desperate to appeal to American viewers. They dismiss Iranian accusations of the demonstrations being US-backed as pure paranoia, and ignore the most simple explanation behind the English slogans, and the websites and networks amplifying the message to English speakers: these materials are being crafted by USAID advisers. This is a propaganda campaign aimed at Western ears, to call for regime change in Iran.

Neda’s Theme is tried and true: Jessica Lynch, Roxana Saberi, Euna Lee and Laura Ling, Neda Salehi Agha Soltan. Onward Christian Soldiers.

Neda Agha Soltan iranian martyr victim of US sniperThe American public won’t believe another fiction about Kuwaiti babies dumped from incubators, or of Belgian children impaled on the bayonets of the evil Hun. So Madison Avenue has upped the amperage. Today’s television armchair adjudicators have to see innocent young women snuffed on film before our eyes. Provided to us by a press too otherwise prurient to show us the mass of death we deal everyday.

The Iranians in the streets, and poor pretty Neda, are being sacrificed by heartless US strategists. I doubt even an errant Iranian bullet can match the American military for cruelty.

High Country Earth First Denver Meeting

Earth First roadshowHigh Country Earth First is hosting the EF! ROADSHOW, in DENVER, May 25-26: Monday 2pm in Cheesman Park, and Tuesday 6pm at the Gypsy House.
 
Four ongoing EF! projects in Colorado: DENVER: Stop I-70 Expansion through North Denver; SAN LUIS VALLEY: Halt gas drilling in Baca National Wildlife Refuge: and WESTERN SLOPE: Red Cliff mine campaign and Feral Futures (May 24 – June 7).

From “Rockslide,” High Country Earth First!

The need for resistance in solidarity with the wild has never been louder or clearer than it is today; the EF! roadshow is a great tool for growing that resistance. There are countless examples to draw from in the story of radical movements before us: militant labor organizing tours, anti-fascist resistance recruitment and international speaking tours to build cross-border solidarity. The origin of Earth First! itself is credited to a few roadshows that kicked it all off in the early 1980s. We are building on this tradition; akin to a fellowship crossing Middle Earth to amass insurgents to face Mordor head-on.

List-serves and websites aren’t enough
This Roadshow’s primary intention is to strengthen our radical grassroots ecological network. For almost 30 years, we have been an organized voice bridging conservation biology with grassroots community organizing, road blockading and eco-sabotage. In the past 5 years we have seen numbers and experience-level in the EF! movement decline drastically. Yet, our place has never been more urgent. New groups are popping up across the country, but they are detached from many of the groups, history, and skills that came before them. We can’t afford to stumble and make the same mistakes over again.

We are at the tail end of a decade where corporate globalization rooted itself in the US and spread across the planet like a plague. And now that the reality of climate change is finally sinking into the mainstream consciousness, the same superpowers that pushed so-called ‘free trade’ policies to exploit wild nature more efficiently are promoting carbon trading in attempt to make a profitable industry out of the disasters they’ve created. The spineless Big Green environmental NGOs are scrambling for crumbs and cutting deals with the industry for shallow public relations victories. Earth First! must rise and recognize that it’s presence is a strong component of making the broader environmental movement truly effective. We are its spine, or as an EF! co-founder, Howie Wolke, has put it, we are the lions of a movement ‘ecosystem’. Our niche is critical, and its presence (or absence) is felt deeply by our surroundings.

We need to reconnect the multi-generational aspect of Earth First! that has fallen by the wayside in recent years. We need to broaden our network’s base—from radical rural grandparents to revolutionary urban youth. We need re-establish lost relationships with scholars and scientists who resonate with us. We need to re-inspire musicians and artists to contribute their passion to our battles.

When it comes down to it, solid movements are based on strong personal relationships; and real relationships don’t go very far over the internet. We need face-to-face interaction to build trust with—and support for—each other.

From EF! Here is a glimpse of ongoing local and national campaigns and projects related to EF!. They could all use your support in a variety of ways—from fundraising to showing up in person. Please contact the organizing groups directly to find out what they need most:

Northern California Redwood Defense
Since the fall of Maxxam/Pacific Lumber, forest defenders in the Redwoods have been directing attention on another logging empire: Green Diamond Resource Company (formerly Simpson). In the last 10 years they have clear-cut 52,000 acres of Northern California forests. They are killing off endangered Spotted Owls and have aspirations to sell off thousands of acres in Humboldt County for Salmon killing suburban development. We have set up multiple treesit villages to oppose the destruction, and we need your help TODAY.
www.efhumboldt.org

Appalachian Anti-Mountain Top Removal
The presence of coal plants are threats to the lives within both the human community and the mountain ecosystem. One of the most biologically flourishing areas of the world is being environmentally and socially impoverished by companies practicing mountain top removal. Mountain top removal clogs streams, destroys forests, threatens biodiversity and forces coalfield residents into the unjust choice between income and well-being.
www.blueridgeef.com

Stop I-69 in Indiana
I-69 is a NAFTA superhighway, already constructed from Canada to Indianapolis and projected to extend down into Mexico. This highway is intended for the mass transportation of goods and resources, to further exploit workers and the land, and to lessen companies’ accountability in terms of human and environmental rights. In 2008, they began construction of this road through southwestern Indiana, which will evict hundreds of rural families, destroy hundreds of acres of land, and devastate the habitats of countless species of animals, including the endangered Indiana Bat. www.stopi69.wordpress.com

Fight Development in the North Woods of Maine
The largest piece of undeveloped land east of the Mississippi is under attack. Plum Creek, the nation’s largest corporate landowner, is in the process of rezoning 20,000 acres of the Moosehead Lake region in Maine for luxury house and resorts, while trying to balance it off with a fraudulent conservation easement plan. This plan would still allow timber harvesting, commercial water extraction and the building of new infrastructure, among many other ecologically devastating practices. www.maineearthfirst.wordpress.com

Defend the Last Free-Roaming Wild Buffalo in Montana
The Buffalo Field Campaign (BFC) is the only group working in the field, everyday, to stop the slaughter and harassment of Yellowstone’s wild buffalo. Volunteers from around the world defend buffalo on their traditional winter habitat and advocate for their protection. Our daily patrols stand with the buffalo on the ground they choose to be on, and document every move made against them. Tactics range from video documentation to nonviolent civil disobedience. www.buffalofieldcampaign.org

Fight new Copper Mines and Roads in the Deserts of Arizona
Chuk’shon Earth First! is fighting the proposed Rosemont Copper Mine in the Santa Rita Mountains, which is greenwashing itself by claiming a need for increased copper extraction for the solar panel industry. The group is also opposing the expansion of I-10, part of the Department of Transportation’s “Corridors of the Future” program to increase capacity of global industrial commerce. The proposed I-10 Bypass would bisect wild/rural lands and facilitate more sprawl between Tucson and Phoenix. www.chukshonef.wordpress.com

Blue Mountain Biodiversity Project in eastern Oregon
Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project (BMBP) formed in 1991 to increase regional and national awareness of the Blue Mountains ecosystems, to ensure the protection for and reintroduction of diverse native wildlife species, to promote ecologically sound restoration and address the root causes of ecological and community instability. They have trained countless EF!ers is forest monitoring. They are one of the country’s premier grassroots ‘paper-wrenchers’, filing legal challenges that help make our blockades successful. They can be reached at 541-385-9167

Stop Florida Power & Light from trashing the Everglades
Everglades Earth First! (EEF!) have been battling FPL’s plans to build the country’s largest fossil fuel power plant in the Loxahatchee Basin; a headwaters to the remaining Everglades ecosystem. EEF! Is also challenging over 500 miles of new gas pipelines and 2 new Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) facilities. Get more details: www.evergladesearthfirst.org

Stop Gas Drilling in Western New York
There is a proposal on the table to begin one of the largest fossil fuel exploration projects in the country. This project would result hundreds of millions of tons of CO2 emissions, along with the impacts of pipelines, power plants, and new LNG storage facilities. Get in touch with Shale Shock: www.shaleshock.org

Bank of America, Stop Funding Coal!
A national campaign is well underway to stop Bank of America (BoA), who is the largest investor to Mountain Top Removal coal mining. The company recently offered lip-service to address their support for the coal industry, but have made no real steps towards cutting ties with King Coal. With BoA locations in cities across the U.S., this campaign can easily be supported in a decentralized fashion. Give ‘em hell! For more info: www.ran.org

No 2010 Olympics
The Native Youth Movement and other First Nations groups in occupied Canada have called for full-scale resistance to the Winter Olympics proposed in British Colombia. The Olympics proposal includes a mess of development, ski-resorts and infrastructure on indigenous land. Learn more at: www.no2010.com

Root Force
This project is a research database and strategic think tank for direct action intended to target corporate/colonial infrastructure, such as: roads, dams, power plants, and mines. Their website offers background information on transnational companies, government agencies and their local affiliations across the United States. www.rootforce.org

Reenacting wars of colonial imperialism

A Revolutionary War reenactment with Colorado Springs D-12 schools
COLORADO SPRINGS, 1776. District 12 elementary school 5th graders reenacted a couple Revolutionary War battles, where the heretofore unstoppable Red Coats fought in vain to crush the American insurgency.

Ryan
Aided by Awakening Councils of British Loyalists, the English troops threw overwhelming force against Colonial militias who would not fight fair.

Hiding in the woods
Comprised mainly of army irregulars, dressed often as ordinary civilians, because they were, the “American” rebels would not renounce terrorist tactics, human shields and unconventional warfare.

Fighting against insurgents
British soldiers were conscripted from among the families who could afford neither education or apprenticeships to the skilled trades. Whereas their Tory collaborator were from the colonies’ wealthy landowners.

Devon
The British armies represented a coalition from client states of the empire, such as the Scottish Highlanders. These occupation forces supplemented their number with private contractor mercenaries, the professionally equipped, widely despised Hessians.

French
The Continental insurgency was accused of including foreign fighters.

Wounded on the field

Red Coats
British military superiority was overwhelming, wherever they concentrated their forces, the rebels withdrew. But there were never enough British soldiers deployed to hold the entire countryside.

Continental Army
The American Freedom Fighters were assisted by France, home of “French Fries,” later called “Freedom Fries,” and the Statue of Liberty.

Ryan
After eight long years of far flung military engagements, incurring an insurmountable national debt, the English conceded victory to the separatists in what became known as the American War of Independence.

EPILOG:
Support Our Troops
Playing the heavy in a reenactment of the US patriotic struggle against British occupation, was not so bad as playing a turncoat.

Most Americans look back and picture themselves having been Lexington Minutemen, or Kentucky Rangers or Continental Marines, but many of our forefathers fought against the patriots. The more ignoble among the collaborators were: Simcoe’s Queen’s Rangers, the Loyal Irish Volunteers, the New Jersey Volunteers, Brant’s Volunteers, Butler’s Rangers, Caldwell’s Company, Docksteader’s Rangers, DeLancey’s Brigade, Brewerton’s Company, the King’s Royal Regiment, the Loyal American Regiment, the Royal American Volunteers, the Queen’s Rangers, and Tarleton’s British Legion.

POSTSCRIPT:
Reports of atrocities were dismissed as enemy propaganda. Evidence emerges later of what happens when infantry are left to their own initiative. Witness: stretcher-bearers and wounded come upon a British patrol coming off the lunch-hour, and are put to the bayonet.
Nurses