Category Archives: Journalism

The Impunity of War Lords, Financial Thieves, Israel, Mercenaries, Mindlessness

These are not good people, those in charge of the military blast-them-all-away-but charge-citizens-hard-on-the-back-end complexes. Here, below, and I have seen a lot, but I shudder just looking at these, well, misanthropes: Biden, Blinken and Austin, a trio of despicable fellows. All the years Austin worked as a mercenary in uniform, and then the offensive weapons companies he protected in that racket. Biden? Over fifty years of destroying Democracy. Blinken? The 71st United States secretary of state since January 26, 2021. He was deputy national security advisor from 2013 to 2015 and deputy secretary of state from 2015 to 2017 under Obama.

Senior US official may soon visit Kiev – media

US apologizes to ruler of Gulf monarchy - media

More space junk, leaks, and the moon shot of Artemis. Think about that — billions for that endeavor and it is not one step for man, but rather one giant leap for Lords of War 3.0, and the war merchants and the FIRE branding thugs of billions. And we have teacher shortages, teacher burnout, prescriptions (necessary) for anyone’s serious diseases out the roof. All of that crisis after crisis, and the inflation, and the housing market on steroids/lack of affordable housing rising, and the suicide rates, and the lost and lost generations, now, and those unborn. All that infrastructure collapsing, all those homes leaking, all those fields and crops dessicating, all the wind and rain and heat, all the lack of decent living conditions. All of the decay and the rising number of aging people who do/barely live without . . . WITHOUT  decent food, health care, denistry, safe and creative activities of daily living. We do without, man, while we arm Nazis and a billionaire boy Being There schmuk. This is the West, the USA under these felons’ leadership (sic) . . .  these thieves, these elites and these Ivy Leaguers. Mainstream Media doesn’t just fawn over them; the MSM pimps for them. But pimps in MSM are, well, a dual-use sort of profession — pimping and prostituting. We the people, we the youth, we the students, we the uninformed, are being screwed, blued and tattooed.**

**(The phrase has always had a very definite negative connotation, and means to be supremely screwed, screwed beyond all comprehension. The original phrase was “screwed, blewed and tattooed”.

  1. “Screwed” essentially means “cheated” here, much as it does today.
  2. “Blewed” meant “lost or been robbed of”. The word’s origin is from the German “blauen” so it’s actually related to “blue”, not “blew”, and meant that something had vanished (into the blue). (According to “A Dictionary of Slang, Jargon & Cant” by Charles Godfrey Leland, published in 1889.)
  3. “Tattooed” refers here to a beating with very rapid blows, in the same sense as a military tattoo, which is a rapid pattern on a drum.

So, the phrase literally meant “cheated, robbed and beaten.”)

Being All Things by Being Nothing: The Enigma of 'Being There' | PopMatters

Channel 4 to screen comedy that shot Volodymyr Zelensky to fame | News | The Times

The dance with the devil is us, we the people, The Eighty Percent, dancing to our graves while paying for the sins of the rich, the millionaires and the billionaires.

Gouging, and shortages, death in a corner of an unheated home: the new Cormac McCarthy script (The Road).

See the source image

Entire regions of the country where homes are unaffordable to most, but where the house flippers get to bid on anything to drive up the cost of a roof over the poorhouse’s head. Meth heads and booze drinkers. So many people guzzling drugs and insane ideas to stave off the pain, the suicidal ideation, the drip-drip-drip of death by a thousand neocon/neoliberal/celebrity culture cuts.

Death By A Thousand Cuts - Death By A Thousand Cuts - Sticker | TeePublic

Rural hospitals short-staffed/not staffed. Urban hospitals short staffed/not staffed. Massive quits for many professions. Then, the doom of Zoom, all those students in college demanding teachers turn their world in hybrid worlds of students sitting at home, sipping drinks, playing Nerf ball, while getting the classes delivered via internet connection. More of the same nothingness, dead-head dumb thinking, and no conversing.

 - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.04.2022

[Artemis shut down for leaking — more misappropriated junk voted on by NOT you and I!]

Truly, the blashpemy of the media is their collusion with the ZioLensky thief, the Thiefs of Israel, and their collusion with the orgasmic military murdering machine, all the hardware and equipment produced, hawked, sold, used. Imagine, EU throwing weapons at Ukraine, while that perversion of a human, ZioLensky hides in Poland. Imagine all the surrendering of Ukrainian Military to the Russians. Imagine his home in Florida, a cool $28 million worth, the Panama Papers reported.

For Ukrainian Jews, having a Jewish president is a source of pride — and fear | The Times of Israel

Imagine Blinken, Biden and Austin in Ukraine. Legitimate targets in my mind. Of course, Ukraine has so much to do with You and I, USA. You know, the ZioLensky amassing $billion$, as the Panama Papers revealed. Well, Pandora Papers, that is! (Panama Papers reveals other thieves and money laundering whores)  Imagine, all the things this society, USA, goes without, and all the sliding systems decaying, and the fraying of social safety nets, all of that, yet, we have Save a ZioLensky Day (daily) at the grocery store, and at the military hardware bargain basement. Easter rotten eggs for the Nazis of Ukraine.

Volodymyr Zelenskiy

  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his partners in comedy production owned a network of offshore companies related to their business based in the British Virgin Islands, Cyprus, and Belize.
  • Zelensky’s current chief aide, Serhiy Shefir, as well as the head of the country’s Security Service, were part of the offshore network.
  • Offshore companies were used by Shefir and another business partner to buy pricey London real estate.
  • Around the time of his 2019 election, Zelensky handed his shares in a key offshore company over to Shefir, but the two appear to have made an arrangement for Zelensky’s family to continue receiving money from the offshore. (Source)

Billions while the heart medicines and diabetes drugs are unaffordable for many. Then, think of Blinken, Biden and Austin. Think of all the fools in the media who make millions a year. All those in the offensive weapons industries. All the governmental workers and all the politicos. Those tanks and “war things” from EU, Germany, hell, ZioLensky is making out like a true war bandit, but in skinny jeans and Gucci shoes).

Germany explains limits to Ukraine weapons supply

Look at this fool, this Brit, captured by Russia and then his family pleads for “fair” treatment of this guy. He’s a soldier for hire, a mercenary, and the British Family wants their son to be treated like what? A criminal, which he is. I can’t image this fellow making it on a 20 click hike with a 60 pound rucksack and thrity pounds of weaponry. But this is it for the Western mind and body!

Then these headlines surround this illegality. “Israel has dropped repeated hints at a major strike on Iranian nuclear facilities in the near future”. This is kosher? Under world order? Hmm. So, dropping bombs on nuclear facilities is fair game? All over the world? This is why the Jewish Project is a Jaded Project, one geared toward murder and theft. Impunity. Killing Iranians. Blasting nuclear plants? So, how is it Russia doesn’t just ka-boom those bioweapons labs in Ukraine? (Do a Google Gulag search on, “Ukraine biolabs” and you get a thousand hits on why that story is fake!)  This is the new abnormal — quash any story that goes outside the neoliberal-rah-rah USA bold coloring lines!

Israel has dropped repeated hints at a major strike on Iranian nuclear facilities in the near future

War in Ukraine turns people’s lives and affairs upside down. Dirty laundry, previously hidden, is on display. A Russian communication on March 6 mentions “evidence of an emergency clean-up performed by the Kyiv regime was found—aimed at eradicating traces of the military-biological program in Ukraine, financed by @DeptofDefense.”

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson two days later spoke of “26 [U.S.] bio-labs and other related facilities in Ukraine.” (Source)

Found 30 biological labs in Ukraine, possibly for bioweapons, claim Russian forces, World News | wionews.com

“Germany involved in ‘military biological activities’ in Ukraine – Russia” (Source)

Bernie’s F-35’s, man, the Bernie Bro Most Expensive Offensive Weapon

NATO pins nuclear plans on F-35

NATO planners are updating the US “nuclear sharing” program to account for most European allies planning to buy F-35 joint strike fighter jets, the alliance’s director of nuclear policy said this week. Lockheed Martin’s fifth-generation fighter has been embraced by multiple US allies, including most recently Germany, despite the Pentagon’s own misgivings about the program.

“We’re moving fast and furiously towards F-35 modernization and incorporating those into our planning and into our exercising and things like that as those capabilities come online,” Jessica Cox, director of the NATO nuclear policy directorate in Brussels, said on Wednesday, adding that “By the end of the decade, most if not all of our allies will have transitioned” to the F-35. (Source)

Bernie Sanders supports the basing of the F-35s in Vermont. He said, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, that it would be a “major blow” if the weapons program did not come to Vermont. Referring to the Vermont National Guard, Sen. Sanders stated, “If they don’t have planes to fly, there ain’t going to be too much for them to do.”

Bernie Sanders Loves This $1 Trillion War Machine

If they don’t have nukes to fire, then what are they going to do with themselves? If they don’t have frigates to sail, what will they do on the water? If they don’t have missiles to launch, then what will they do in the air?

And this guy was what? An alternative? What? He’s as insane as Trump as Bush as Obama. As Elizabeth Warren reiterated, she is a capitalist . . . “capitalist to my bones…” Sanders is one too.

But we have the beasts of this nation, Israel, all those in Europe, Australia, everywhere the US not only wags the tail but bites with rabid glee. Yet, we have pundits and great intellectuals covering up the tracks of history. All the hatefulness of the Anglo Saxons, the British Isle, all the Euro-Trash, so much, that speaks to that hatred of Slavs, Russians, the Chinese Peril, all those “Orientals,” and, alas, the Muslims, we have that elephant in the room of these traitors of humankind. And, yet, Russia, and Syria, and, well, USSR did support many movements, many revolutions, and those in countries considered black and brown. To be honest, the Russians were asked (USSR) to get involved with Afghanistan by the Afghans.

As is the case with the Anglo-American-Canadian-New Zealand-Australia-UK world, there will be blood, in every imaginable way. From birth to death, from the village, to the great cities, the Anglo-American-Canadian-New Zealand-Australia-UK is like a termite of galactic proportions, drilling into all cultures, all tribes, all people of the land, people of seas and mountains and forests. The munching mandibles of that “race” of people. Imagine, calling Russians orcs, subhuman.

The reality is the full force of these demonic masters of slavery — EU, Nato, USA-Israel-UK-ETC. will make Ukraine the killing fields.

They are hoping for a nuclear strike.

And, alas, this is the reality the leftists who support Russia’s goals in de-Nazification. The end goal has been shifted. With the full force of the military industrial complex.

Day 50 of the SMO – are things becoming clear(er)? (UPDATED 2x)

While the armies of Ukraine and Russia are preparing for the upcoming battle for Donbass, Kiev’s allies are increasing arms supply shipments to Ukraine. The United States, mainly by European forces, is implementing a large-scale rearmament project for Ukraine.

Heavy offensive systems are being transferred to the disposal of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, which will open a new stage of military confrontation.

The delivery of about three hundred modernized Soviet-made tanks to Ukraine was confirmed. According to various reports, Poland transfers the upgraded T-72M1R as the Czech Republic removes its T-72s from storage. The AFU also has 170 Polish BMP-1s at its disposal. Echelons with M109 howitzers and M113 armored personnel carriers are already on the Ukrainian border.

High-precision ammunition is also being transferred to Ukraine, including the M982 Excalibur with GPS guidance and anti-tank SMArt 155 munitions. Ukraine has also been provided with Switchblade mobile barrage ammunition.

Ukrainian troops are being saturated with modern air defense systems including British Starstreak MANPADS and American Stingers.

During a recent briefing, the Pentagon said that a batch of 1,000 ATGMs has already been delivered to Ukraine.

It is reported that Norwegian Naval Strike Missiles are planned to be transferred to Ukraine. According to some reports, the MGM-140 Army Tactical Missile System will be also transferred from Europe. The range of these complexes reaches 300 km, which makes it possible to strike deep into the territory of Russia.

At the same time, mercenaries and military personnel of NATO countries are deployed along with the AFU in Ukraine under the guise of foreign volunteers. The foreign fighters in Ukraine are led by US officers. It has become obvious that the whole command of the AFU is concentrated mainly in the hands of the United States.

On April 14, Russian missile forces eliminated another detachment of foreign mercenaries in Ukraine. As a result of the strike, up to 30 mercenaries of the Polish private military campaign were killed in the settlement of Izyumskoye in the Kharkiv region.

According to unconfirmed reports from local sources, about 2,000 foreign mercenaries, including fighters from Turkey and Azerbaijan, arrived on the territory of the Zaporozhye region. Most likely, foreigners will be deployed on the Avdiivka front lines, since the Russian forces have already begun assault and offensive operations in the area.

In the political arena, the United States openly issues an ultimatum to all countries that are not ready to sacrifice their own interests and stop cooperation with Russia.

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has issued threats to those countries that see an opportunity to benefit by maintaining their relations with Russia and filling the void left by others.

“Let’s be clear, the united coalition will not be indifferent to actions that undermine the sanctions we have imposed.” – she claimed. (Source)

Monsters.

See the source image

No highly trained and experienced special forces Russian brigade has anything on this whiz woman, Yellen. These are natural born killers, of the massive variety.

 https://pictures.reuters.com/archive/RUSSIA-SECURITY-DRILLS-RC21LD9YZWSD.html

The chosen few, those Star Chamber Elite, the veritable unholiest criminals of FIRE — finance insurance real estate — with their weapons of mass destruction — algorithms, Wall Street, Deep State, Shallow State, Sanctions, and, well, we now know, DARPA Bat Virus, et al — they are unbeatable!

Finally, the ZioLensky is looking for his own Ten Year War. Talk about the obscene oligarch:

Ukraine is not prepared to give up its territories and is ready, if needed, to fight with Russia “for ten years,” the country’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has said.

In an interview with CNN, Zelensky said that for Ukraine “the battle for Donbass is very important” for a number of reasons. He explained that this battle might influence “the course of the whole war.” However, the president stressed that the preferable solution of the conflict is the diplomatic one.

“We cannot give up our territory, but we must find some kind of dialogue with Russia,” Zelensky said, underlining that no talks could be conducted “on the basis of the Russian ultimatum.”

He stressed that a dialogue is needed to prevent more deaths but he hasn’t ruled out another option.

“We can fight the Russian Federation for 10 years,” Zelensky said.

Those mighty billionaires and multimillionaires will be laughing all the way to the bank, or gold markets.

Shift!!!!

A little poem for Russia, still, National Poetry Month:

Tears of Rage Captured in a Poem and Harmonica Riff

You think dark is just one color, but it ain’t. There’re five or six kinds of black. Some silky, some woolly. Some just empty. Some like fingers. And it don’t stay still. It moves and changes from one kind of black to another. Saying something is pitch black is like saying something is green.

— Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon, Chapter 2, Page 40

‘A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness.’

we (they) came, we (USA) laughed
they (Libyans) died, then Yemeni babies
those children of Venezuela
collateral damage, Libya
immolated by Democrat with an H
Clinton laughs when leaders are raped
with blade, but we are the voice
of hypocrisy, Iran, and Brown places
or Black haunts, those Congo tykes pulling up
coltan/iPhones/ Chrome books for all
we dance in our cancel culture….

‘And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea.’

talking heads paid for stupidity
millionaires chant to teens and grannies–
‘Russia is an enemy, we are at war’
even those puttering PhD fools
learn to forget Yankee damage
to Cuban babies, the kindness
of Norte Americanos holding
death court on Afghanis,
millions will suffer Goldman
JP Morgan Sachs lords of financial war….

‘Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears.’

yet Safeway plies me when I
buy tofu and butter leaf lettuce
‘give money for Ukraine’
that fascist Comic ZioLenskyy
trickster of thespian rouse
he dances with billionaires….

‘Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life.’

I have friends who dig deep,
journalists where truth is core
principle, where all sides are facets
of complicated stories, now, tomorrow
history redefined is scooped up
pulled apart, a place of discovery
but Americanos can’t take nuance
the white is against black
pro versus con, enemy or foe….

‘For purple mountain majesties.’

we’ve been Wobblies for
one century, THEY/USA jailing speakers
we, organizers against capital
shot down by Pinkerton and Police….

‘O beautiful for pilgrim feet.’…

today mainstream is extreme
squashing out common sense
old retirees chanting, ‘treason . . .
never pro-Russia . . . block anyone shouting Donbas crimes
Crimea crimes . . . ‘
these old mothball ideas are tools
of CIA, tools of VOA, tools of withering
politicos, plagiarist-rapist VP now POTUS

the digital demigods have it
shutting down free speech zones
closing minds, corralling those of us
called fringe, in their minds
fanatical, gleeful donating
one dollar to a Nazi regime
the optics of Jew with Azov
oh the Congressional dimwits zoomed
comic boy caught money
hiding in Panama Papers…

‘Till all success be nobleness,
And ev’ry gain divine.’

how many Safeway campaigns
ask money for Afghanistan
billions stolen from treasury
how many pleas by Walgreens
beg for dollars to stave off
Yemen famine . . . how many
d’s with Democrat shouting
‘bomb apartheid Israel
fabricated stolen land
of a military industrial complex
stamped with Star of David’?….

‘For amber waves of grain.’

those star spangled sycophants
they draw cartoons of their hero
as Europeans shut down
stars and stripes infirm
old men, young Ivy League
demons, telling world–
tighten belts, shower less
yet Safeway and Walgreens
want my shekels for bombs
bullets brigades of mercenaries
yet we hear in all circles
of Dante’s hell, screams of
‘hate 139 million Russians . . .
death to Slavs . . . sanction
heroes of world war two . . .
eviscerate good people
who plowed over Nazi’s . . .
donate to Ukraine.’

old and young
tongues tied to propagandists
chanting homilies from mainstream
media, minds blended into mush
the hubris and greed and power
Yankee Doodle Dandy eyeing
China, wanting every dead
Taiwanese as the price of
red white and blue
sanctions –unilateral murder
until Safeway and Walgreens
plead for dollars for Taiwan-
Ukraine as USA/RoboCop
stuffs trillions
into war machine
oil machine
retail machine….

‘O beautiful for spacious skies.’

Brother, sister will you spare
a billion for big bad bombs?

Behold, you are beautiful, my love;
behold, you are beautiful;
your eyes are doves.

–“Song of Solomon,”1:15

The post The Impunity of War Lords, Financial Thieves, Israel, Mercenaries, Mindlessness first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Julian Assange is Not above the Law, but He Shouldn’t be Beneath Justice

Hewn in to human rights legislation borne of fascism’s decline in the mid twentieth century is a pool of glorious protections of civil liberties and press freedoms. It is deep, but it is not entirely immune from attack. Political opportunists undermine it in regular waves, repressing dissidence in their states and satellite states, even and especially in the West. Victims pile up, the criminalisation of journalism gathering steam, the propaganda to justify this awful retrenchment of civil liberties rising in the background. This is fascism resurgent.

Glasnost translates to ‘transparency’, and it was assumed to be a core value of western government when Gorbachev’s administration began to dismantle socialism in Russia in the 1990s. The liberal democratic system prevalent in the world today is in theory buoyed by open, transparent government, and in every area where it is practised as the predominant form of government, gives rise to the rule of civil liberties said to be inalienable, universal, and non-negotiable. Being as old as democracy itself, they’re deeply rooted in history, representing progress and democratic status. Insofar as it remains worth defending, there remains no better way to adhere to “civilised” culture than to defend civil liberty and constitutional freedoms. While it may be a world away from the current zeitgeist among western leaders for criminalising dissent, journalism, and whistleblowing, reaching its zenith in the prosecution of Julian Assange, it’s nonetheless only a few fights away from restoration.

All around the world are corrupt governments torturing and oppressing citizens critical of the regimes that rule, not serve, them. True to Orientalist stereotypes, this type of place is reflexively assumed by the privileged commentariat to be an anomaly, in some remote region of the East, where the rule of law is alien and everybody’s neighbour knows someone in the gulag. Taking the American tradition of world policing to new heights, however, the most advanced superpower in the advanced industrial west will supply everything you could want if you were seeking examples of archetypal tyranny, and its satellites are all too happy to turn this practice from an isolated infraction to standard, common practice. Being emboldened in power, the US jurisdiction, and those under its spell, practice extraterritorial prosecutions, extraordinary renditions, in which foreign citizens are either extradited to the empire state for trial and punishment bordering on and oft crossing the rubicon into illegal torture, or have it enforced upon them in US bases overseas.

Unluckily, the CIA oversee these cases and will bend over backwards to accommodate torture, and to offend the constitution. Set in the context of the Patriot Act (an unconstitutional abomination of law rafted through congress during the hysteria after 9/11) they have unlimited powers to break non-refoulement law in the human rights convention. The principle of non-refoulement forms the crux of many internationally binding contracts in which signatory states agree to uphold and abide by the practice of not forcing refugees or asylum seekers to return to a country in which they are liable to be subjected to persecution.

Despite power’s collective disgrace of the law by breaking the principles enshrined in non-refoulement law, missing the irony, the Tory government has said the arrest of Julian Assange is just and serves to show he is not above the law. Likewise the official line from Ecuador that Assange’s work constitutes “cyber-terrorism.” Such talk from the government evidences not the culpability of Assange for any crime, but precisely the establishment’s desire to invert the real narrative: ironically, Assange has been arrested for exposing corruption that posits powerful organisations and politicians above the law, and for so doing he is now deemed beneath justice.

Assange had previously said it was not the prospect of answering to British or Swedish justice that worried him and put forward a robust case for the proximity of a British or Swedish trial to a US extradition during the debate about the moral ambiguity of his self-imposed exile, in which he credibly suggested he feared a kangaroo court in the US which would punish him to life, or gruesome death, for abiding by first amendment ethics, a claim that many thought was paranoid but has been vindicated.

Like all young people looking out to the world today, I am acutely conscious we are growing up in a times of extreme volatility and complex global politics marred by violence, war and corruption, one yet borne aloft by revolutionary dreams of a better world that have come to fruition in hopeful global rebellions, which I cheered on as a socially conscientious teenager.

Perhaps the defining note of optimism for me is that I am emboldened by hope in the face of an insurgency of brave truth telling, of righteous civil disobedience against corrupt and ossified power, but at once, the defining note of pessimism for me is that I am equally as worried by the way insurgent bearers of truth are being treated like mice in the maze of a Goliath American state, one that treats the whole world order as if it were its sole domain, its entire extraterritorial jurisdiction, a caliphate, whose subjects are treated with increasingly wanton whim at the behest of the senate, military and intelligence agencies in the empire state.

Notorious names — Schwartz, Assange, Lauri, Manning, Winner — correspond to notorious cases. While the case specifics encompass a varied range of actions and activities associated with subversion of US imperial strategy, they encompass and are united by concerted efforts to subvert imperial activism of the US state decidedly through electronic means — whistle blowing, data dumping, hacking — activity which, rendered through the realpolitik filter with which hawk politicians have been conditioned in the corridors of Yale and The Pentagon, is tantamount to treason. Thinking logically it is obvious treason is an untenable accusation against those who — with the exception of Manning, Schwartz, Winner — have never been American citizens. Indeed such charges sullying the names of these renegades seems designed to inculcate fear and obedience to American objectives not just within but beyond domestic spheres of influence. Silencing dissent, then, can be seen as core imperial strategy, and one with terrifying, unprecedented extraterritorial reach.

Hard working, principled journalists — who’d be legends and treasures in a long lost era of good press ethics in society — and their sources are paying a high price out of their human rights under the aegis of a craven new age of US imperialism. Most modern states bar the integration of legitimate journalistic activity with the penal code, like those currently being deployed to get Julian Assange. But in the data age, with less developed laws around the link between technology and sources, criminalisation is being embraced, or at least is being seized upon in the moment before laws and regulation are clarified and tightened up to get Assange.

But it stinks. For one evidence cited in attempts to justify his arrest and pursuit under the law are at best dubious, at worst slanderous. Moreover in a zeitgeist defined by Brexit negotiations steeped deep in the rhetoric of protecting parliamentary sovereignty it ought to worry us British courts are willing to yield to the whims of US courts who are willing to put Assange away for life, or kill him, for the crime of doing journalism.

It’s time that the establishment drops pretences and stops using the phrase “no man is above the law” as if the mantra is still meaningful. Either justice is a right or its not. For so many, conspicuously all in the business of exposing corruption, they don’t get it. It’s time to reform society’s treatment of whistleblowers and remove all legal obstructions to their freedoms.

In theory, we are equal under the law. In practice, some are beneath justice. Equality under the law — from which the maxim “no one above the law” — is a bastion of liberal democracy. It is oft cited in defence of the moral superiority of the western way of life over other systems that have preceded it or stand in opposition. A fair legal system is seen to be the sign of an ethically mature democracy. Yet it is precisely because the law is administered to prosecute whistleblowers on elite crimes and reward elite corruption that this truism about our equivalence in the contemporary justice system is an anachronism with a diluted meaning. In war, justice is always the biggest casualty.

The post Julian Assange is Not above the Law, but He Shouldn’t be Beneath Justice first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Leaning into Memoir Writing in Order to “Know”

Following here is an assignment: Find some object you hold near and dear. Something that can leap you into a backward narrative. Something to hold you as a memoir writer, going back, reflecting back. That thing, you can hold or touch. You find meaning in it. And, that object holds stories. Try and do this under ten pages. 

I plugged the community/continuing education class I designed for the local community college, Oregon Coast, CC, here, at the local twice-a-week rag: “The art of remaking-retelling a story” (Newport News Times)

I’m big on writing narratives. Almost every person I have met and spent time with has told me their story. That story is sometimes a series of disconnected events. Many times people open up, and tell me about significant emotional events (SEE’s) that changed their lives, one way or another.

And, it’s never that simple, no, the death of a child or a newfound love. Change occurs over time, and that event changes through the sieve that is memory. How I was when confronted by federalies in Chiapas 40 years ago is a different story and memory landscape now compared to then, when I was telling all my buddies/compas about that event at Palenque.

So, below, I took the assignment I gave the 7 students to heart. Except, I was angry, I was riffing off of something completely unrelated to the assignment at first: I was asked to review a new novel, in manuscript form, from a fellow who is getting it published. And, man, after reading 200 manuscript pages of the 350 total, I was ready to punch out the world.

Without giving away the author and the press, here is that email to one of my editor friends:

Howdy —  I really do hope you didn’t tell the author I was a “for sure thing” to review his novel. I’m sorry to say that what I’ve been reading thus far (200 pages) I can’t really do any good as a positive reviewer. I know we crossed this bridge before, me having major hiccups with the work of another book (that other novel, remember)  . . . and I know you all have this book in the line-up.

But, shit, guys, I just can’t get into the book at all. I am not going to give you a big rush of negative comments about the bad dialogue, the incongruent characterization, the cut-out characters, and the dead-end plot, and the absolutely wrong way to start a book, and all the dialogue to move along a story, and the lack of verisimilitude. Look, I know I am just a flunky out here in Oregon, but I have been in the fiction game, even with all the rejections over the years, for a very long time. I’ve taught fiction, too. And, I am a deep reader of fiction. I was not expecting Ivan Doig or Jim Crumley or Tom McGuane or Robert Stone, you know, but, seriously, I can’t find anything literary about the book, and I can’t find much to say that would make a review helpful for him or as a way to highlight your new Press’ addition. You know I want to help you all, but there isn’t a  decent poetic or literary hook in it, nor is there a hellava plot, nor is there a helluva cast of characters. There is no electrical charge in the writing.

I hate to do this to you since you both have been good at going with my stuff, and publishing my work in the past. I just wouldn’t be able to pull this one off, without it being just a marketing promo, and I know you do not want that from me. I am sure Mr. S has a following and a slew of people ready to read this book. That bodes well for potential sales, for sure.

I want to be honest and upfront, since I respect you both. I am not your man in Havana for this project. While I have reviewed a hundred books for the El Paso Times years ago, I remember Leslie Ulman giving me a Pam Houston book to review, since she was a guest at UTEP, that is, a visiting author. A friend of hers, as well. I know my clear look at and pugnacious reviewer’s response to that book, once it hit the newspaper (and was syndicated out further afield), caused some rumbling and grumbling with Leslie and Pam, but shit, I didn’t do a hatchet job on it — just some cogent and pithy writing myself as reviewer to point out some of the westerny sort of overkill.

Mr. S’s book is what it is — you all have him on contract and you all have it planned for publication. I just do not want to do a heavy heavy heave ho of my own principles as well as disregarding my own history as a writer and reviewer by attempting something positive. I could have a hell of a fistfight with the book, but that’s not what you all are after.

I see K is on the jacket with kudos. He seems to be your man, really, for this assignment.

I’m not being snarky or elitist or any of that, as you well know me.

It’s not a good book, guys. Not well written. It’s canned dialogue. Cliche. Off the mark. Boring. Not going anywhere. And, yes, he was a journalist, but I can tell you these folk in the book are not real, and as you know, fiction has to be more than pedestrian recording of events. One of the rules is to not move the plot and story and tension with dialogue. That’s most of the book. So much is bad in the book.

Yet, there is that adage that one person’s cup of tequila is another person’s buttermilk. I gotta stick with tequila.  Others love the heavy tasteless milk.

Thanks for thinking of me.

Good luck with it and to him.

It’s not just a slam dunk me writing that criticism above. Really. I’ve been hawking my long form, that is, novels, short story collections, essay collections, for a very long time. New York agent named Jack Ryan, and he went to bat for, and he was also waylaid by many a female editor who thought my stuff was too male, too regional, too dark. The list goes on. Cancel culture 1986-2010.

So, really, putting out a review of this book was not possible for me without really eviscerating the words, the plot, the entire book, which for me would be a public spiritual homicide. That’s not in my inner core, though I can be super critical and pugnacious when it comes to, well, beautiful people, or those who have made it and are resting on their laurels.

Here, a quick note from the editor in response to my decline —

Paul,

This is the most magnificent decline I have ever read! So glad you are here to keep us honest.

Others had troubles with the book too.

For some reason, I just liked the narrator, but overall that’s probably not enough.

So it goes. This world we live in, the one we always have lived in. Lives interrupted, derailed, denuded, and of course, enhanced by surviving.

Funny how my students are opening up after just three sessions, sharing all manner of things that they want to add to their larger memoir. Here, a bit of Memoir 101:

Difference Between Memoir and Autobiography infographic

Memoir vs Autobiography Basics

1. Autobiography usually covers the author’s life — the entire life up to the point of the writing, while memoir focuses only on a part of the author’s life.

There are going to be exceptions to every point on this list, but generally speaking, autobiography aims to be comprehensive, while memoir does not. Autobiographers set out to tell the story of their life, and while some parts will get more detail than others, they usually cover most or all of it.

I do use Mary Karr’s work, the Art of Memoir, in the class. And, Tritine Rainer’s Your Life as Story. 

Here, just one slice of the definition and connotation:

Okay, so here we go with my two-hour entranced writing which fit my class’s assignment. I had to write about Montana (where the guy’s book was set), to get it —  that bad manuscript read — off of my chest or at least partly out of my system. And I sent it to the editor, and he came back with this:

Loved the essay.

Reminds me of the time my girlfriend Lois and I drove from Tucson to the coast in a lark. We picked up a hitchhiker in Big Sur. We dropped him off at a compound of Hobbit cabins in the hills above the surf where his father – Stephen Stills’ dope supplier – gifted us the most potent weed I’d ever smoked. One puff and I fell down on the ground paralized. He said he wanted to give me a couple bags in thanks for bringing his son home,  but I was paranoid with the paralysis. Lois helped me walk to his cabin where we would get our “reward.” He opened a wooden trunk that I was sure held a shotgun that would start a Manson-like killing spree beginning with Lois and me. Instead we got three or four bags of this wild dope that later in our circle in Tucson was called “killer weed”and taken out and smoked on only the most sacred occasions.

Book review: in Praise of James Crumley's The Last Good Kiss | Pulp Curry

Okay, then, you the reader now have me the writer in your sights. Enjoy the flow of memoir, in this “literary” essay. God help us all!

+–+

Grizzly Country, a .44 magnum, a Thrown- Away Suitcase, a Cleveland Woman’s Life Scattered

When I finally caught up with Abraham Trahearne, he was drinking beer with an alcoholic bulldog named Fireball Roberts in a ramshackle joint just outside Sonoma, California, drinking the heart right out of a fine spring afternoon.

— opening line, The Last Good Kiss by James Crumley

“Did you hear? Catina is going to Mexico with some guy with long hair and earrings in both ears in his old pick-up truck. Can you believe that?”

Not the best opening line for a book but I couldn’t get it out of my head all the way up to that Last Good Kiss bar in Missoula where James Crumley had invited us to sip Patron.

My girlfriend’s North Dakota cousin’s words couldn’t top this: An orange Samsonite suitcase was the gaping open evidence of some meth-ed out former boyfriend who snatched the dark-haired woman in a Montana town and found a lonely path frequented by bruins in order to dump her body along with all her earthly belongings somewhere in that dark dripping night in Big Sky country.

Okay, not Jim Crumley prose, but I wasn’t writing it, just thinking it after we found the two high school yearbooks wet from the afternoon drizzle. The mud that led to our dry campsite held a couple of dozen color snapshots spread around like flattened lives. There was a cool leather fringed leather jack, two pairs of jeans laid out like a running ghost. The lacey underwear I saw first. Half was left in the suitcase, the other half flung around where the case spilled open.

We were twenty miles from Missoula, after heavy tequila toasts with Crumley, and we were in THAT pre-Mexico pick-up truck with the small camper snuggly attached holding all our gear. We wanted to have a campfire, hot coffee and flapjacks in the morning.

It was getting dark, and bear prints were around this mess of scattered things in a woman’s life. Two pink bras, a Jimi Hendrix t-shirt, a bunch of personal letters in envelopes bound by hair bands. This was 1985. There were no cell phones. We were out in the boondocks. It was just me and my girlfriend. We both were friends of Crumley since he was both a professor and my thesis advisor at UT-El Paso of all places.

You Can't Go Home Again: James Crumley's Brilliant Ambivalence About Texas - Books - The Austin Chronicle

[You Can’t Go Home Again]

We had been in his classes, and we taught alongside him as graduate students. He wanted the thrill of Juarez and the West Texas mountains. He was a heavy drinker, liked coke and he dated students. I was able and ready to get him the white stuff. He liked my wild man freedom. He was especially curious about my work in a refugee center helping Central Americans – mostly Guatemalans – get political asylum.

The word was he got sacked (not rehired for his year-to-year visiting writer contractor) because some students complained old Dancing Bear Jim came to the workshops three sheets to the wind. That was 1984, before #metoo. There were accusations of dating graduate students, not a no-no, but at UTEP, with a prude of a president, these rumors were enough to get the writer fired.

My girlfriend, Catina, wasn’t really freaking out at the sight of the splayed suitcase. She had a few theories about why this woman’s personal belongings were about. There was a domestic violence sort of vibe I could feel, the light was diminishing in May, and large snowflakes floated down from the purple sky. I was more paranoid than Catina. I knew I had to be the asshole that might have to pull out both guns and get our asses out of some fucking Gary Gilmore situation. Back then, in my 20s and 30s, I courted such things, literally and in my mind.

“You know, it looks like this girl just tossed this suitcase out as if she was jettisoning part of her life. You know, high school years, busted friendships. Fuck, high school can be like a mind fuck. The shitty girls and the rape-minded motherfucking football players. I guarantee, this girl did not just have the one suitcase. But this one, with photos and journals and letters, that’s my theory. One life gone, a new life in Montana. Maybe Canada. There’s no foul play.”

I liked the way Catina plotted out a story from her personal point of view. I would have never thought of a scenario so close to the female perspective.
We came to Crumley, to get my thesis approved, and now, here, after drinks and buffalo burgers, to see bears. Hell, wasn’t that the irony, Dancing Bear and all, his novel? Make no bones about it, we saw two brown bears when we approached the muddy road down into this killer of an empty campground. Grizzly Campground was the name. It was part of Rock Creek, located in the Ranch Creek drainage. Several campsites bordered the creek, and we picked this one. We had it all to ourselves, and we were high and drunk, and we wanted to pitch a tent, and then this scene unfolded like ball lightning in our veins, right there where we were about to pitch our tent.

Lolo National Forest - Grizzly Campground

I still had a revolver and lever action pair of weapons on my mind. The four-inch buck knife on my leg, well, just for cutting apples and cheese.
We barely touched some of this girl’s things, and we agreed to not rifle through the personal notes and journals. Not just yet. As I said, I had two guns in the camper, and Catina had camped with her Colorado family all over the west her whole life. We were not afraid of wild things. Just men with uppers, booze and sinister thoughts in their blood.

We were in awe of the ferns, the boggy smell reminded me of my mom’s birthplace in British Columbia. Then there was that amazingly metallic and citrus odor in the air, fresh conifer growth. And the water heartbeats of a nice clear creek hitting boulders. We could see the quicksilver flow draping rocks, granite heavy with moss and lichen.

“Hell, I guess we have to let the cops know about this when we head out. But for now, it’s fire, tent, booze.”

Catina took a few Missoulians and spread them out over the scene of some crime. It was a crime in anyone’s books – to chuck personal correspondence and two high school yearbooks into the mud.

Making camp was a quiet time for us, a rarity. Catina was in her thoughts. Her own family demons. I was just stunned with the possibility of having to do some sort of bullshit thing if anyone returned to the scene of the scattering. A crime? My theory was the opposite of Catina’s.

I got the half full bottle of Juarez tequila from the back, tucked in a nice colorful serape from Juarez we were going to gift to Crumley. I took swigs from the bottle. Warm, dry earthy draws back to hot desert. Being up here — with Crumley, and thinking about my own prodigious dance with booze, drugs, adventure and recklessness never seemingly coming to a bad end, even when I got in a few pickles out in the wilderness with no gas and a hot motorcycle I had to push to find some place to put down a bedroll — I was invincible with my girlfriend and my guns.

Man, the time I was 18 with my scuba buddy Brian, in the Sea of Cortez, and we had just run out of gas after hours of diving and snorkeling (he continued to say, I told you so . . . we shoulda bought another gas tank). Shit, I told him to stay put, and I went madly swimming toward a marlin fisherman who also happened to be out in the middle of the Sea of Cortez near Tiburon Island. I swam and swam with rocket fins and snorkel-mask. I got there in 30 minutes.

Typical for me: Bad situation turned into a free tow, a party at their condo and still my buddy complained, as he stayed in the one room hotel and pouted. Tequila, steaks, amazing stories, and even getting laid. That’s what running out of fuel in a 16 foot barely-sea worthy boat will get you.
Or get me.

I had promised Catina’s parents back in El Paso that no harm would come to her on this camping trip. The clearly anxious and chaotic nature of the Samsonite toss and the large area of disarray felt like a foreboding.
Yeah, my own 23-yea- old sister came to mind when the fire was roaring with the agave spirit burning my esophagus. Barely dead a few years.

Roberta was wild, adventurous and killed driving her Harley out of Kamloops south to see me, our sister, mother and father in Arizona. Call us the half brother and half sister. The Army stepdad was on his way out of the country to Saudi Arabia. Robbie insisted on coming down by road, to Tucson, with two male buddies on their rides.

UPDATE: Powell River sees highest home price hike in B.C. - Western Investor

That was 1978 when we got the call that she had hit the pavement after some fucker passed out at the wheel and crossed the lane into her bike.
Another set of adventures, a burial, a wake, after a crazy sea plane into Hyder, Alaska. My mother was there, with her fragile lungs, coming into Alaska on a cold night, which was bright in June. I was her escort, the only other family there. I met her biological dad Rod there, a guy I had met years earlier in Vancouver, when my sister sent me a bus ticket to visit her.

As I write this (and almost everything), her squash blossom turquoise bracelet is by me, sort of a talisman, a reminder, or some ethereal message bugging me to keep plugging away. Here I am sixty-five, writing about a forest haunting when I was 28.

Those years, man, 28, Crumley had my book, something I thought would sell: the great American novel set in Mexico. That was what centered in my head then, and even now, almost 40 years later, it’s like a rheumatoid disease, a stupor at times, enchanting me into believing I have the impetus still, now, to push through all the bloody hurdles and walls to get something big published.

That disease lasted for 30 years since that week with Crumley. It’s untreatable. It’s terminal for some. I am one of the unlucky suckers still believing in some fucking New York publishing miracle.

We got the tent set up, as snow slowly powdered the ground. The campground was amazing, the greenest, most jungle like since we had been camping in deserts, along the north rim of the Grand Canyon. In Utah. In New Mexico. Coming from El Paso, we decided to hit the Colorado route.

Authorities search for grizzly bear that killed bicyclist camping in Montana - ABC News

But this, Grizzly Campground we claimed to ourselves. Hours with Crumley and then my interview at the Missoulian (I never got the job – a dozen out of work PhDs in Missoula looking for writing work, even newspaper work, way ahead of me on the prospect list). We were heading to Livingston, to Chico Hot Springs, to hang out with Crumley and the director of some film Jim was helping script-fix.

The guy – director of Black Beauty, I think — had an option on Dancing Bear and The Last Good Kiss. Time magazine had just done a piece on the up and coming noir writers, and Crumley was one on that list as a killer detective fiction guru. He was from Texas, did shit in the Army, got an MFA from the Iowa writers workshop, and learned from Richard Hugo to study Raymond Chandler in order to become fluent and real and poetic as a novelist.

At 28 with my own suitcase full of real life, adventures, travels, I was an admirer but not a fan boy, really, of the complete Crumley, though he did resist paying taxes as a protest against the Vietnam War. I was all life, fiction, journalism, politics and considered myself left of Che.

That suitcase, the fire Catina had stoked well, the waning light, the creepy icy white on all the ferns and low limbs of amazing conifers made for a Crumley noir setting. Then, juxtaposed with our own plans to take this Datsun pick-up all the way to Guatemala loaded with scuba gear and typewriters. Then, we’d be heading to the Yucatan after hitting every Mexican state. Stories for the two dailies in El Paso. Rolls of film sent to the editors.

There is something about the personal belongings of someone – a woman’s make-up accouterments, the undergarments, the letters, hair brush and berets – spread out all over the place in the open. No tire tracks to speak of, except ours. And, to be sure, I did make a head-lamp and hand-held flashlight recon of the area within a mile of the camp.

The idea Catina had was she just lost it. Threw the shit away in a rage. Something about the past, all those journals and yearbooks. Mind you, we had not rifled through anything yet, and we did not pull things out of the suitcase. We did, however, bring the scattered remains of the orange travel case back to the center of the dirt road.

The newspapers were getting covered in snow. We were shivering. The tent was perfect near the fire. I drank Juarez tequila and Catina sipped a bottle of merlot. Granola and gouda we consumed while we were deep in our literary and gumshoe thoughts.

The pile of belongings I kept pointing the strong flashlight at (actually, a diving light, with a huge veronica of bright beams) — the covered-up life of this woman. And, I saw eyes, in the distance. Bear whiskers. We had the food in the camper sealed up. We tried to keep crumbs away from everything. Nothing in the tent would attract a bear. I even had a big can of bear spray. And the fucking .44 magnum and 30.30 Marlin.

There were bears out there. That’s what we came for, but we didn’t count on the broken suitcase and a life strewn all over the place.

There was some essence of Cherri Halister the next morning. That’s what her name was. We looked hard and long in the yearbooks. She was there, circled, with “The best one at the party. . . . three-fisted drinker . . . why do we have to graduate now, now that we are just becoming friends?” Other tributes and benedictions from her graduating friends. She looked like Barbara Hershey – Remember her, in The Last Summer, Boxcar Bertha, The Baby Maker? Catina knew Barbara, and, of course, later, she did Hannah and Her Sisters, and played Mary Magdalena in The Last Temptation of Christ.

Hell, my younger sister Heidi was an extra in a movie with Charlton Heston, The Last Hard Men. Barbara Hershey took a liking to my kid sister. Heidi was nine years old; it was shot at Old Tucson, the movie lot that burned down. I took her to the set many times. I watched Heston and Hershey plod along in some of the scenes that needed the old western cutout town. I told Catina that, and she laughed, telling me that I would be famous one day for being just this far on the edge of fame – she put both her hands out and sized up that fame around 18 inches.

She was right.

This is a place I never heard of, Mayfield High School, in Cleveland. The Wildcats. The year books were for 1968 and 1969. If she was 18 upon graduation, this Cherri Halister would be 34 when we found her stuff all over the forest.

We were entranced by the pile of belongings, but I had pangs of paranoia that something bad really did happen to her . . . or some fuckers might be coming back. I had the Ruger holstered on my hip and the Marlin fully loaded and on the front seat of the Datsun.

I sort of knew those two firearms would be added props for the story I was going to tell Crumley, and all the friends I had back in El Paso, in Tucson, and doctor family back east. Guns, long-haired guy with earrings in both ears, a blue Datsun king cab pickup, a girlfriend who knows how to get a campfire going in sleet and rain, and some flagging belief that a guy like Crumley would actually help me get a novel published.

Sure, a few hours with Peter Fonda and some other notables at Chico Springs was filed away in my Irish storytelling satchel. Crumley introduced me to him. Then the lore of, well, Richard Brautigan who, after meeting Thomas McGuane (another Montana writer), he would eventually visit Montana’s Paradise Valley and buy a 40-acre ranch in Pine Creek, near Livingston. All that lore, man, and yet, the trip, the entire trip we made was punctuated by Cherri’s disappearance.

We did stop at Deer Lodge and call the Sheriff about what we found. I did rip-off a photo of her: a nice color photo of Cherri Halister, at a pool, in a blue bikini. She must have been around age 16 or 17. Nothing creepy. Just a captured moment in time, when she looked like a really young and budding Barbara Hershey.

When that suitcase was still in her family’s garage. When the light of life was just seeping a bit out of her young life. Barbara Hershey would have been jealous of Cherri. She looked like a star.

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A Damning Indictment of Monopoly Media Dishonesty

The Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) sought to use podcaster Daniel Dumbrill, a long-time Canadian resident in China, for propagandistic purposes. The media savvy Dumbrill was prepared for this.

Said Dumbrill, “Today, I’m going to indisputably and unmistakably demonstrate how mainstream media shapes your views and opinions through manipulation, dishonesty, and outright lies.”

Influenced by the late journalist Robert Fisk, I avoid the term “mainstream media” for the simple reason that state/corporate media is not my mainstream. So I call such media what it is “state/corporate media” or “monopoly media” à la Ben Bagdikian or “mass media.” I prefer independent media or independent writers that, is my mainstream. I keep tabs on the monopoly media because it, unfortunately, has an audience and is influential. So an awareness of the content and monopoly media’s message is necessary to reveal and refute its factual inaccuracies and twisted narratives. Dumbrill is finely attuned to the realities of China and acutely aware of the geopolitical intrigues in the world. He is able to intellectually cut through disinformation without difficulty and reframe it into a honest representation.

Steven D’Souza, a senior reporter with CBC interviewed Dumbrill on China and propagandizing. Dumbrill knew to expect dishonesty from the CBC.

When allegations were brought up about Chinese machinations in Xinjiang, Dumbrill revealed the source, the Australian so-called think tank ASPI, as a tool of imperialist disinformation as evidenced by its funders. Despite this, D’Souza ignored what Dumbrill had informed him and used ASPI disproportionately as an information source in his program without informing viewers of ASPI’s affiliations and funding. Dumbrill’s counter-argument about ASPI was omitted.

The biggest offense of the CBC, according to Dumbrill: “was their desperate attempt to find something they could pull out of context from a near half hour interview with me and ending up with only 3.5 seconds of usable footage to twist into their narrative.”

D’Souza suggested that Dumbrill was participating as a paid influencer to propagandize for the Chinese state. Dumbrill firmly closed the door on that innuendo saying, “I don’t benefit financially from anything I do. As a matter-of-fact I go through through great expense, both time-wise and financially to do what I do. I’m not belonging to any kind of a state apparatus here. I can travel around freely and see everything for myself as well…”

Nonetheless, in the program aired by CBC, a 3.5-second comment is attached to an unrelated and out-of-context narrative, positioning Dumbrill as a paid influencer of Chinese propaganda.

Dumbrill decries the absence of journalistic integrity, calling such manipulation “unethical, dishonest, and even fraudulent behavior.”

When questioned by Dumbrill why he had done this, D’Souza evaded the question, saying he was too busy.

So Dumbrill gives D’Souza one more time to set the record straight publicly:

After reflecting on our conversation and watching your final product, do you stand by that work — both in a personal and professional capacity? It will be useful if you dare say that you stand by this kind of reporting, and I don’t suspect that you could admit that you are ashamed of this piece without risking your pay check. Therefore, I think your silence, which I think you are inevitably going to go with, will at least give us enough hope that at bare minimum you are self-aware enough to recognize that you are a sell-out and everything you are pretending to look for in this report.

By all means, watch the Dumbrill piece and reach their own conclusions.

Because of his integrity, knowledge, and ethics, Daniel Dumbrill is one trusted source for my mainstream information.

The post A Damning Indictment of Monopoly Media Dishonesty first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Renaissance Woman Sylvia Pankhurst: Feminist, Artist, Council Communist, Anti-Imperialist


Why Sylvia Matters

How many of you about to read this have heard of Sylvia Pankhurst? Our guess is, not many. She seems to have fallen through the cracks of socialist and suffragette movement literature. Her mother, Emmeline Pankhurst and sister, Christabel Pankhurst are still looked up to as leaders in the suffragette movement. What is overlooked is the fact that they only supported suffrage for women who had property. This, of course, completely eliminates women in the working class and women who are poor. Sylvia, on the other hand, devoted her life to supporting those women and giving them a voice. We find it ironic that Emmeline and Christabel were considered rebels even though later in life both became pro-war, conservative and religious fundamentalists. However, it was Sylvia who was the true revolutionary. Her name and work should become familiar to all socialists, and especially feminist socialists. Sylvia is an important woman to know about for all women – and men – who want to learn about the history of significant women in the struggle for socialism and women’s equality.

Sylvia lived a life of courage, strength, and conviction. Born in 1882 into an upper middle-class family in Manchester, England, her parents were founding members of the Independent Labor Party. Both Richard and Emmeline Pankhurst were firm supporters of women’s rights. Sylvia grew up attending public talks, demonstrations and surrounded by friends of her parents who were considered radicals.

We learned all this from reading Rachel Holmes’s book Natural Born Rebel: Sylvia Pankhurst.

Political Work

In her long years as a socialist and feminist she never stopped working, whether in the arts or in politics. Her early years until the Russian Revolution were dominated by the Suffrage movement. After the Russian Revolution she devoted herself strictly to socialism and supported the Russian Revolution for the first four years. However, she ultimately split with Lenin over his reinstitution of a partly capitalist economy. Sylvia became associated with the Soviets, or workers’ councils, and advocated for them as political bodies over parliaments. She opposed fascism in both the 1920s and 1930s and supported Ethiopia against both Italian and English imperialism.

Sylvia moved to Bow in the East End of London in 1912 when she was 30, a traditionally working-class neighborhood. It was here that she set up the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU). Emmeline and Christabel did not approve. She did many things to support working women and women whose husbands were away at war. She established a café that was free, called Cost Price Restaurant. She also put women to work by organizing a cooperative toy factory. She established The Mother’s Arms, a school for toddlers whose mothers were working. At this school the children were taught according to the Montessori method. When the children arrived in the morning in dirty and torn clothing, they would be given uniforms to wear while their clothes were washed and mended.

Sylvia was extremely imaginative in her strategies and tactics in agitating and organizing as a suffragette. She regularly gave public talks and handed out pamphlets, often on the streets, agitating and encouraging women to fight back against the oppressive system in which they lived. She marched in more demonstrations than she could count. In fact, she said later in life that she didn’t like to go on walks unless they were marches of protest. She constantly outfoxed the police who tried to shut these events down and arrest her, smuggling herself into meetings where she was banned. She hid inside furniture, and impersonated a pregnant woman by stuffing newspapers down her dress. She was full of surprises.

Sylvia was arrested 15 times in her life campaigning for the rights of women. It’s been said that the 19th century – extending into the early 20th century – was the century of the penitentiary. Over one 18-month period she was imprisoned 13 times. This had adverse effects on her health throughout her life. In fact, it’s remarkable that she lived to be 78. The first time Sylvia was arrested, for yelling and causing a ruckus in court in defense of other women being sentenced in 1906, when she was only 24, she was placed in the harshest division, the third division. In the third division the women were denied their own clothing, reading, and writing materials, and were fed rotten food. She endured torture through force-feeding because of her fasting as a means of rebellion. All of this changed her life – physically and politically.

She took part in demonstrations where women were dragged down side streets, beaten up, and sexually assaulted by the police, as they were on Black Friday, November 18, 1910. In 1913 the government passed a bill called Temporary Discharge for Ill Health because they feared that too many women would die, turning the public against them. The suffragettes called this bill “The Cat and Mouse Act”. They were released on the terms that they would be returned to prison when they had regained their strength. However, most of them went to “safe houses” till they were stronger, then promptly returned to militancy. They were awarded medals by other suffragettes when they were released which they wore with pride. Emmeline was never subjected to force-feeding because she was too high-profile among the middle and upper-middle classes. Sylvia was subjected to it repeatedly.

Sylvia had constant fights with her mother and sister over her desire to combine feminism with work in the Labor Party. As a result, she was driven to the margins of the suffragette movement in Britain. The gap between she, her sister and her mother widened when she campaigned against British involvement in World War I. The differences became an abyss when Sylvia supported the Bolsheviks in the Russian Revolution.

As early as 1921, Sylvia understood the dangers of fascism and though her involvement in socialist parties waned, she was a life-long fighter against fascism. During the 1930s she became involved in the cause of Ethiopia and its fight against Italian fascism. She defended Ethiopia against all imperialist stirrings, including that of Great Britain. By the end of 1950s, with her 30-year soulmate Silvio Corio dead and constant harassment from the British government, there wasn’t much left for her in England. She was invited by the Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie to move to Ethiopia. She spent the last four years of her life there involved in plans for improving their educational and health care systems. She was beloved by Ethiopians and when she died in 1960 she was honored and buried along with all the other Ethiopian fighters against fascism.

Skill in the arts

She was multi-talented in the creative arts. She was a good enough artist to receive a scholarship to the Royal College of Art in 1900.  Her drawings and paintings were rooted in the experience of the working class. She created portraits of workers both on and off the job, as well as of women in prison. She used her skills to design leaflets, posters and banners for up-coming protests and strikes. She was conflicted throughout her life about whether or not to focus on her art or to focus on her political activism. In fact, she managed to incorporate both into her work.

She also wrote plays and as she got older, she wrote mammoth sized books on the suffragette movement as well as the cultural history of Ethiopia. She regularly wrote articles for her own and other publications. The first newsletter she published after she moved to the East End of London was the Women’s Dreadnought, which later became the Worker’s Dreadnought. The tile came from a type of rope with a knot at the end of it that women used to protect themselves from attacks by the police and others during demonstrations.

Personal Life

Sylvia’s father, Richard was a radical lawyer whom she loved dearly and who was a significant influence in her life. Her father gave her a great deal of intellectual support and their home was filled with books along with a revolving door of guests from all kinds of social movements.  He was a suffragette from before Sylvia was born. Her father was an atheist. He led Sylvia to agnosticism through reading and rational argument.  She later became an atheist as well. She met Eleanor Marx, Wilhelm Liebknecht, many revolutionaries, and radicals, and listened to discussions on Fabianism, socialism, and Marxism in their home.

Sylvia’s relationship with her mother and older sister was stormy from early on. She spent many long years trying to gain her mother’s approval despite their deep political differences during and after the Russian Revolution.

Sylvia had two major loves in her life. The first was a long affair with socialist Keir Hardie that lasted for about 15 years. Hardie was committed to staying with his wife, and Sylvia grew impatient with his being on the road constantly and his affairs with other women. They were great political collaborators when they worked together and Hardie looked after her when he was in town. He was probably her greatest political influence. However, she had to keep their love for each other secret from the rest of the world. Her second major love was an Italian anarchist named Silvio Corio. Silvio moved in with her and supported her work during the 30 years they were together. He cooked, did carpentry, and they collaborated in the production of newspapers Sylvia founded and wrote for. They never married but had a child, Richard Pankhurst, born in 1927.

Shortcomings

Sylvia had many of the quirks that are all too typical of socialists. Her eating habits were terrible and erratic until Silvio started cooking. Her clothes were terribly out of date, and she walked around at times with her blouses inside out. She did not have good boundaries and she went to prison too many times for her to not pay for it with her health. In spite of plenty of positive feedback from all those whom she encountered throughout her life, Sylvia wasted way too much time trying to get her mother’s and sister’s approval. We found ourselves hoping for her mother to die so Sylvia would stop obsessing about her. Despite that, she charmed everyone and her house in East London was a popular watering hole for socialists and Pan Africanists. She created in her home a similar atmosphere as her father Richard created for her growing up.

In reading her biography, we realized we have mixed feelings about her. There are obviously things we love about her. We love her move towards socialism and even militancy. Her refusal to remain attached to the original suffragette mantra or votes for middle and upper-middle class women took tremendous courage, particularly as it meant going against what her mother and older sister promoted. She steadfastly rejected the institution of marriage, and while she had two great loves in her life she never married. She was brave to have a child out of wedlock in moralistic Britain in 1927. Her artistic skills and how she used them in the service of promoting issues she valued were considerable. She had the ability to move people and be persuasive with her speeches. Her speech impediment, which made her pronounce her ‘r’s as ‘w’s – she talked about “wevolution” and the “misewies of the industwial worker”, only made her more human and lovable.  She was an excellent, indefatigable writer, and spread the value of socialism and equality in her own publications and those of others. Her relationship with her son, Richard was a strong one, and she led by example, helping him to grow into as much of an activist as she was. She even went on Richard’s honeymoon with his wife Rita (with Rita’s permission). They moved with her to Ethiopia and are all buried in the same sacred place in Ethiopia.

We also were impatient with the amount of time Sylvia spent focusing on the suffragette movement before she moved closer to socialism and anti-militarism. While she supported the working and lower classes, she did not spend time systemically organizing the entire working class, not just women. Even though she knew socialists like Eleanor Marx, Karl Liebknecht,

Alexandra Kollontai, Rosa Luxembourg, and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn she never committed fully to being part of a socialist organization after she lost interest in the Russian Revolution. Instead, she wasted her time dogging the likes of Winston Churchill, writing letters, and sending petitions for change in parliament. What does this have to do with socialism? Britain has consistently proven itself to be extremely conservative and reactionary. Why couldn’t she understand that?

Finally, her insistence on going on hunger strikes, water strikes, even sleep strikes while in prison – all of which ruined her health, was hard to read. This, to us, smacks of martyrdom. We believe that in order to be effective in creating change, the individual must take care of themselves. It’s much more difficult to lead a revolution if you are strong in spirit but weak in flesh.

Quality of the book

Size of the book

Sylvia Pankhurst had a long and eventful life, so it is understandable that her biography would be a big book. What do we mean by big? Between 400-600 pages. Rachel Holmes’ book is 976 pages. There is just too much unnecessary detail, such as the names of every person she engaged with and every event she took part in. One of us had to have her book broken down and bound into 3 separate books so she could more easily hold it.

Jumping around within a single chapter

A second problem is that the chapters don’t stick with simple chronology. For example, a chapter roughly covering the period of 1917-1918 will have references to events that happened ten years before and 10 years after. We were constantly trying to figure out exactly what period the author was describing.

Lack of structure within or across chapters

When we read, we like to see the skeleton of a chapter in the form of subheadings that are clear and not cutesy. In other words, within a 20-page chapter there might be five subheadings. That way, before reading the chapter we tie the subheadings together so we can say to ourselves, “Ah – so this is where this is going”. There was none of that.

We also would have really appreciated a list of her milestones – bullet points of years and events that might cover 3 or 4 pages. Is it too much to ask to be given a map before beginning the journey? We don’t like mysteries. We want to know where we are going to determine if we want to go there at all.

The distribution of focus

We felt there was way too much time spent on the suffragette movement for the first half or more of the book. We also felt there was too much time spent on Sylvia’s relationship with her mother and sister. We found it surprising that the life of Sylvia’s romantic companion of thirty years, Silvio, was given so little time. Lastly, Sylvia’s relationship with socialism was essentially dropped after about 1927. Surely Sylvia has opinions about what became of the Soviet Union. What did she think about the Spanish Civil War and the anarchist collectives and the workers councils in Spain which lasted for 3 years and involved millions of people? Would she not care about worker self-organization which was like the Soviets on a much grander scale? How she might have felt about Khrushchev’s revelations?

In spite of these criticisms Rachel Holmes is a good writer and kept us engaged. We were very happy and pleased to learn about the life of a wonderful heartful revolutionary as Sylvia Pankhurst. She was, indeed, a natural born rebel.

The post Renaissance Woman Sylvia Pankhurst: Feminist, Artist, Council Communist, Anti-Imperialist first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Is it already too late to say goodbye?

It seems we may have reached the moment when it is time to say goodbye. It has been fun, educational and sometimes cathartic – for me at least. I hope you got something from our time together too.

I am not going anywhere, of course. Not for now at least. I love to write. For as long as I feasibly can, I will continue to rail against injustice, call out corporate power and its abuses, and demand a fairer and more open society.

But I have to be realistic. I have to recognise that a growing number of you will not be joining me here on this page for much longer. And it feels rude after so much time together not to bid you a fond farewell before it is too late. I will miss you.

Many of you may have assumed it wouldn’t end this way. You probably imagined that I would get banned by Facebook or Twitter. You would be able to rally round, send in complaints worded in the strongest possible terms, and lobby for my reinstatement. Maybe even sign a petition.

But it isn’t going to end like that. There will be no bang. I have been too careful for that to be my fate. I have avoided rude and crude words. I have steered clear of insults (apologies if my responses have sometimes been a little caustic). I have not defamed anyone. I have avoided “fake news” – except to critique it. I have not peddled “conspiracy theories”, unless quoting the British Medical Journal on Covid now counts as misinformation (yes, I know for a few of you it does).

But none of that has helped. My blog posts once attracted tens of thousands of shares. Then, as the algorithms tightened, it became thousands. Now, as they throttle me further, shares can often be counted in the hundreds. “Going viral” is a distant memory.

No, I won’t be banned. I will fade incrementally, like a small star in the night sky – one among millions – gradually eclipsed as its neighbouring suns grow ever bigger and brighter. I will disappear from view so slowly you won’t even notice.

Which is why I am saying my goodbyes now while I can still reach you, my most obstinate followers.

But this isn’t really about one small light being snuffed out. This isn’t just about our relationship coming to an end. Something bigger, and more disturbing, is taking place.

Journalists like me are part of an experiment – in a new, more democratised media landscape. We have developed new reader-funded models so that we can break free of the media corporations, which until now ensured billionaires and the state controlled the flow of information in one direction only: to speak down to us.

The corporate media need corporate advertising – or their owners’ deep pockets – to survive. They don’t need you, except as a captive audience. You’re both their prisoner and their product.

But the lifeblood of a reader-funded journalist, as the name suggests, are readers. The more of you we attract, the better chance there is that we can generate donations and income and make the model sustainable. Our Achilles’ heel is our dependence on social media to find you, to keep reaching you, to offer you an alternative from the corporate media.

If Facebook (sorry, the Meta universe) and Twitter stop independent writers from growing their readerships by manipulating the algorithms, by ghosting and shadow-banning them, and by all the other trickery we do not yet understand, then new voices cannot grow their funding base and break free of corporate control.

And equally, for those like me who are already established and have significant numbers of readers, these tech giants can whittle them away one by one. Ostensibly, I have many tens of thousands of followers, but for several years now I have been reaching fewer and fewer of you. I am starved of connection. The danger, already only too obvious, is that my readership, and funding model, will slowly start to shrivel and die.

Joe Rogan, Russell Brand and a handful of titans of the new media age are so big they can probably weather it out. But the rest of us will not be so lucky.

Readers will lose sight of us, as our light slowly fades, and then we will be gone completely. Vanished.

I have lost count of the followers who – because, god knows, an algorithm slipped up? – tell me they have received a social media post many months after they last saw one from me. In the cacophony of media noise, they had not noticed that I had unexpectedly gone quiet until that reminder arrived or else they assumed I had given up writing.

Which is why, if you want to keep seeing posts from me and writers like me, if this is not soon to be a final goodbye, if you think it important to read non-corporate analysis and commentary, then you need to act. You should be bookmarking your favourite writers and visiting their sites regularly – not just when you are prompted to by Mark Zuckerberg.

You need to be an active consumer of news – not a passive one, as you were raised to be when the choice was between three TV channels and a dozen print newspapers.

You need to search out and maintain those connections before they are gone entirely and the window has closed. Because those voices you prize now will wither and decay like autumn leaves if they have no audience. If you leave it too long, even when you finally remember to go search for them, you may find they are no longer there to be discovered. You will have missed the chance to say goodbye.

So let us say it now, while we still can: Farewell.

UPDATE:

Writing is a solitary activity, and it can be easy to imagine that what was obvious inside your head will be clear to others when that idea takes its place in the outside world. But a proportion of early readers of this post have mistaken it for an actual goodbye, rather than as a cautionary tale of what has been happening and what is still to come. So let me reassure you: I am going to continue writing and you can continue reading me, so long as either Twitter and Facebook direct you to me or you make the effort to find me.

Here’s hoping that my goodbye will prove unnecessary.

The post Is it already too late to say goodbye? first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Requiem for a People-Centered World Dream

My dream is to invite a reader into a room and pour a nice cup of tea . . . and then nail the door shut.

— author Charles Bowden, 2010 NPR interview

There is so much daily that expresses so much about the slippery slopes we are in globally because of predatory-penury-parasitic-pugilistic capitalism.

In the USA, on this continent, north, and south of those colonial and Manifest Destiny “borders,” the amount of both absurdity and abomination is magnified in a world of protracted panic.

It’s there, truly, the panic. Young people are offing themselves with Narcan and with opiates. There are more dreams not only deferred, but dreams turned into nightmares by a thousand cuts.

We have a world where getting into uniform, with a rifle, with a joystick for murder incorporated, is the new abnormal. Hitch up in the killing machine US Army for $50K.

If this isn’t blasphemy, then, you know we have lathered ourselves on that slippery slope of the multi-pronged Faustian Bargain.

Then, more mercenaries recruited for big bonuses: Make that the disgusting US Army,

You know how messed up the USA is, from A to Z, and the news continues to illustrate the dying empire. Paying punks to enlist in the killing machine!

FORT CAMPBELL, KY — The U.S. Army is offering its largest bonus ever for new recruits with up to $50,000 available to qualified individuals who sign on for a six-year active-duty enlistment.

The total incentive package for a new recruit is based on a combination of incentives offered for the selected career field, individual qualifications, length of the enlistment contract, and the ship date for training.

In the past, enlistment incentives for full-time soldiers could not exceed $40,000.

The Army is competing for the same talent as the other services as well as the private sector and must have the ability to generate interest in the current employment environment, according to Maj. Gen. Kevin Vereen, who leads U.S. Army Recruiting Command in its mission to fill full-time and part-time vacancies in about 150 career fields in the regular Army and the Army Reserve.

“This is an opportunity to entice folks to consider the Army,” said Brig. Gen. John Cushing, who serves as the deputy commanding general for operations under Vereen at USAREC. “We’ve taken a look at the critical (military occupational specialties) we need to fill in order to maintain the training bases, and that is where we place a lot of our emphasis.”

Now run that up against The Man who coined the term Military Industrial Complex, and a new book written by, well, shall we call that person part of the elite, part of the chosen people from Ivy League and East Coast silver spoon roots. And, in the magazine that for many is a sell-out, for sure, Jacobin: Here, the article reviewing the man and the book.

Crisscrossing the country, Butler denounced US warmaking abroad and ruling-class violence at home as two sides of the same bloody coin, telling audiences from Racine to Roanoke that America was divided into “two classes”:

On one side, a class of citizens who were raised to believe that the whole of this country was created for their sole benefit, and on the other side, the other 99 percent of us, the soldier class, the class from which all of you soldiers came.

Butler published a short book, War Is a Racket, collecting the key themes of his orations in 1935. Later, in an essay in the socialist magazine Common Sense, Butler confessed to having been a “racketeer for capitalism,” elaborating that, as “a member of our country’s most agile military force,” he had served as “a high-class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the bankers.” In 1936, Marine Corps informants sent to spy on the ex-general observed him speaking on a panel alongside self-identified Communists and reported that “the General appeared to us to be either insane or an out and out traitor.”

[Major General John A. Lejeune, head of the Marine Corps, calls on General Smedley Butler in camp at Frederick, Maryland in 1922. (Bettmann / Getty Images)]

And, as an aside, but a big ASIDE, we are in a time of collective cholera of the conscious, in this remote work, remote being, remote news world. Just watching the fake left, Amy Goodman, daily (M-F) with an absolute stiff arm to authority, as the Democracy Now newsroom in New York is with Goodman, solo, while her correspondents, including Juan Gonzalez, are stuck in their homes with their laptops and tiny cameras and mic delivering their fear porn.

Young Lords logo.png

Imagine this happening today, 2022 — Verboten, again, in the Zoom Doom of Dead Consciousness. Mask up, sit on your toilet, tune into Zoom, if you are lucky:

[Students at the University of California at Berkeley filing in to listen to Smedley Butler’s Peace Day address in 1939. (Library of Congress)]

I analyzed Juan’s book, News for All the People: The Epic Story of Race and the American Media, a while back. Remember, Juan was once in the radical group, the Young Lords.

Luís Alberto Urrea, author of The Devil’s Highway, said “…in Murder City Charles Bowden plunges in head-first, without a parachute. There are moments when the book threatens to burst into flames and burn your hands.”

We are in a time of cholera of the consciousness, of infantalized masses following the dictates of a few chosen people, men and women of those classes, those groupings, the vetted and vaunted few, the ones who have been knighted by the lords of finance insurance real estate, and, more than FIRE, but the complex: Butler, War is a Racket.

Of course, it isn’t put that crudely in war time. It is dressed into speeches about patriotism, love of country, and “we must all put our shoulders to the wheel,” but the profits jump and leap and skyrocket — and are safely pocketed. Let’s just take a few examples:

Take our friends the du Ponts, the powder people — didn’t one of them testify before a Senate committee recently that their powder won the war? Or saved the world for democracy? Or something? How did they do in the war? They were a patriotic corporation. Well, the average earnings of the du Ponts for the period 1910 to 1914 were $6,000,000 a year. It wasn’t much, but the du Ponts managed to get along on it. Now let’s look at their average yearly profit during the war years, 1914 to 1918. Fifty-eight million dollars a year profit we find! Nearly ten times that of normal times, and the profits of normal times were pretty good. An increase in profits of more than 950 per cent.

Take one of our little steel companies that patriotically shunted aside the making of rails and girders and bridges to manufacture war materials. Well, their 1910-1914 yearly earnings averaged $6,000,000. Then came the war. And, like loyal citizens, Bethlehem Steel promptly turned to munitions making. Did their profits jump — or did they let Uncle Sam in for a bargain? Well, their 1914-1918 average was $49,000,000 a year!

Or, let’s take United States Steel. The normal earnings during the five-year period prior to the war were $105,000,000 a year. Not bad. Then along came the war and up went the profits. The average yearly profit for the period 1914-1918 was $240,000,000. Not bad.

There you have some of the steel and powder earnings. Let’s look at something else. A little copper, perhaps. That always does well in war times.

Anaconda, for instance. Average yearly earnings during the pre-war years 1910-1914 of $10,000,000. During the war years 1914-1918 profits leaped to $34,000,000 per year.

Or Utah Copper. Average of $5,000,000 per year during the 1910-1914 period. Jumped to an average of $21,000,000 yearly profits for the war period.

Let’s group these five, with three smaller companies. The total yearly average profits of the pre-war period 1910-1914 were $137,480,000. Then along came the war. The average yearly profits for this group skyrocketed to $408,300,000.

A little increase in profits of approximately 200 per cent.

Read the short book, then scale it up to today! Trillions stolen from US taxpayers, and all the apps, all the services of the private money hecklers who have gotten sweetheart contracts with every branch of the government you and I supposedly fought for. All those trillions in bribes and bailouts. Imagine that, a Trump LLC and then a CitiBank Biden BBB. And before these two scoundrels? Do the history, look at the administrations, and figure it out. Here, just one short diatribe featuring one hell of a Satan, Kissinger. Beware of the verbiage I deploy to singe this fellow and those presidents who have utilized this war criminal. I have already gotten emails threatening me for the Blog Post. And notice all those cozy photos of Henry Kissinger with all the tribes of descrutive capitalism, a la war. War on us, war on societies, war on nations, war on children, war on ecology, war on thought, war on agency, war on the human body, war on thought.  “Tribalism Rules.”

So here we are, now, the kernel of this diatribe today — our faces. Oh, how we give up more and more each day, until the chip is in the back of the neck, and those bots are gathered in our organs with graphene building blocks to our souls.

Again, I harp on this one blasphemey, IRS demanding facial recognition — and that agency is for us, right? A truly representative form of democracy demands we the people have a huge say in what happens to us, and that’s not just idiotic voting, but again, “War is a Racket” is now “Banking-AI-Pharma-Med-Entertainment-Science-Education-Prisons-Law-Congress-Energy-Transportation-Chemicals-Engineering-Space-Data” ARE the Racket.” This is yet another single story that comes to us via the Net which is yet another chink in the armor of humanity plucked from our souls:

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the US will require people to submit a facial scan through a third party provider to make payments or file taxes online. The system raises obvious privacy concerns.

Currently, users only require a username and password to log into their IRS accounts. But starting the summer of 2022, users will need to verify their identity through a third-party identity verification company called ID.me. The change was first noticed by Krebs on Security.

So you dig a bit, and find out who these millionaires and hedge funders and social impact investors are behind this “third party” (gouging, sick profiteers) outfit, ID Me!

Nader’s good, but he can only go so far. Yesterrday, 1/20, on Democracy Now, a rare media visit for Ralph Nader, who has been locked out of board rooms, out of newsrooms, locked out of so much for decades, when his memory, his insight, his analyses are vital to institutional memory and his own sort of harping against the profiteers.

He has to beat those dead horses, multiple times, year after year . . . dead horses tied to the fact there are no real journalists in the legacy media, and that there are no cops working the FTC or DoJ or EPA or FDA. He is spot on, but he never gets on NPR or PBS or Fox or CBS. Nader is spot on about Republicans being fascistic and messianic. They are, of course, worse:

And the reporters didn’t take him to task there. The reporters, either they’re not doing their homework or they’re full of taboos. I mean, they never raise the corporate supremacy over our country. There isn’t a single agency in the federal government that isn’t influenced maximally by corporate lobbies. And Congress is swarmed by corporate lobbies. You have 500 drug company lobbyists full-time assigned to Congress, and there are 535 members of Congress. And these corporations are strategically commercializing every aspect of our society, commercializing childhood, strategically planning the tax system, the food system, the health system, fighting global warming remedies, the fossil fuel industry, ExxonMobil. They’re planning our genetic inheritance. Commercializing childhood should be a left-right issue, conservative issue. The press never asks about it. The self-censorship of the press is overwhelming. That’s why we have to have a more independent media.

We have to have — I mean, look at the coverage of Ukraine. As Katrina pointed out, if our country was invaded in a span of 40 years from the north, with 50 million casualties, what do you think we would do? Do you think we would just station troops on the northern border? We would have taken over the northern country and annexed it. And that’s why dictator Putin can get away with what he’s doing now, in terms of public opinion of the impoverished Russian people, is because they remember. They have their casualties in their families from the western frontiers, started with Napoleon.

And here we are, expanding a military alliance for arms sales for the military-industrial complex, because, as was pointed out, a condition of joining NATO is to buy the F-16 and other weapons in Eastern European countries. NATO is a military alliance organized against the Soviet Union. And now they’re expanding it in Eastern Europe and putting troops there. It’s, here we go again, a completely preventable conflict. What Putin really wants is Ukraine never to join NATO, no strategic offensive weapons in the Ukraine. He’s asking for ending strategic weapons in Europe — that is not going to happen.

But the press asks war-inciting questions. NPR asked it. David Sanger asked it. They asked war-inciting questions. It’s like Vietnam all over again. It’s like Iraq all over again. They don’t ask peace-inciting questions about diplomacy. And this is a dangerous situation, and the press just isn’t doing its job. It isn’t just Biden.

He can’t communicate how the GOP is opposed to everything that’s defined as human. You don’t make moral appeals to the GOP, like Senator Warnock just did. You show that they are opposed to sending $250 and $300 monthly checks to 65 million children, which has stopped now, and the GOP will not expand it. I mean, that’s a good political item to communicate to the American people. Those 65 million children come from conservative and liberal families who are both deprived. He doesn’t know how to communicate. The GOP knows what it wants. It’s messianic. It’s fascistic. It’s driven. And the communication from the Democrats, from the DNC to the White House, is weak. It’s anemic. And the public senses that. (source)

See the source image

Finally, a story NOT covered in legacy media or left wing media. Ralph doesn’t get it yet. He still believes in his book title, how billionaires will save the world.

See the source image

 

He’s dead wrong about the above statement/title of one of his books. And, here it is, again, social impact investing, and the soul of humanity, especially youth, being sucked up by the ultra rich and investment teams for their data and their compliance — The Internet of Bodies and Human Capital Futures Bets In Brazil

In the coming years, global financiers, will attempt to meld dynamic pricing and mobile payments with biometric digital identity, Internet of Body sensors, and blockchain smart contracts and then weave it all into an expansive spatial web meant to control our social and economic relations in both the material world and, through digital assets, rights and privileges, in the Metaverse, as well. Click here to listen to an interview I did with Bonnie Faulkner of Guns and Butter that goes into more detail about how impact investing connects to digital twins, and mixed reality.

Surely it is twisted to view communities as resource deposits of untapped data, but that is the logic of end-stage capitalism. The infrastructure needed to scale human capital finance profit are ICT (Individual Communication Technology) devices including phones, tablets, and inexpensive computers like chrome books; wearable technologies and biosensors; and 5-6G used in combination with data-dashboards that verify impact data against predictions and success metrics laid out in the terms of the deals. These are all things one finds in recreation centers in the United States now, and given inroads made by the Aspen Institute, Stanford, Harvard and the like, they will very likely become standard issue in the favelas, too. Not because any of it is good for children, but because the children’s data has value, and their compliance has value.

The Metaverse will be populated by compliant avatars. Beyond social impact, the conditioning of the young to cyborg life is going full throttle. Meanwhile for portfolio managers, children’s futures are just tranches of investment – data commodities. It’s only business. — Alison McDowell, Wrench in the Gears (dot) com!

Most people I talk with do not have the bandwidth or wherewithal to understand this next stage, end stage, capitalism into our very souls, which is fascism, inverted totalitarianism, all bunched up in a world of chaos, all drawn and quartered on the backs of us, vis-a-vis all these scams of Build Back Better variety, or UN’s sustainability goals and Universal Basic Income propaganda, and the 4IR and WEF — the fourth industrial revolution is part and parcel of the Great Reset.

This sort of stuff Alison writes about does get under many of our skins, but for the most part, I know so many people who have given up, who think that we all are data mined anyways, that we have all our info in the banking-IRS-DMV-insurance-medical-education superhighway of giving up all agency, anyway, so what’s the big deal we are being tracked, and what’s the big deal that our kids are being watched and what’s wrong with our ovaries and prostates and such being monitored by the Internet of Bodies and Nano-Things when we just have to lean back and enjoy this new world?

And I have harped for 17 years here at Dissident Voice, and decades before, in newsrooms, in classrooms, in homeless shelters, in programs for the disenfranchised, on stage, at conferences for sustainability, on my radio show, elsewhere. I have harped and harped about the false flags, about the overlords drilling into our very being, about more and more of our agency stripped from us daily, not as part of a huge democratically controlled system of community building, power to the people organizing, or we are the 80 Percent movements, but to mine our souls so we are ghosts in their machines.

The agency we have given up was with that passport, all those sick people who pressed my ass at various border control passings. Strip searched and body cavity groped twice. Then, all the shot records needed to go here and go there. All the proof of life in school (Iowa IQ tests), the SAT, the LSAT, all the tests (run by the chose people, millionaires) and all the records of accomplishment, of criminal involvement, all the credit scores and all the car blunders, all of that kept for THEM, the Complext, the Insurance, Real Estate, Finance, FIRE, millionaires who get legislation in THEIR favor passed through the tricks of pimping and prostituting and arm twisting and outright bribery.

Imagine, protests and cops rounding us up, and then court cases, appearances, the hassles, the humiliations. Try it out for size.

How many arguments have I had with MD’s who know squat about nutrition and each time challenged me and my vegetarianism? Me, running 6 miles a day, biking 30 and scrambling underwater and up hills?

How man dirty arguments about “that” history, versus a new and improved revisionist history vital to a population from which to rise up and take on the paymasters, the body snatchers, the mind thieves?

Until we are here, 2022, in a chamber of stupidity, all the dumb and worthless stuff out there, all the racists and white-priviledged perspectives out there pounding it in the heads of unsuspecting youth, K12, TikTok, YouTube, all of the Net and WWW. All the Ivy League and Oxford-trained scum who determine not only our futures, but write our histories, and what they write is almost always semi-dead wrong. Because without the voices of the oppressed, those on the streets, in homeless camps, those suffering poverty and the inflammatory disease of capitalism; i.e., fines-tolls-fees-surcharges-service fees-handling charges-tickets-code violations-late fees-taxes-triple taxations-levies-processing fees-mortgages-ball on payments-PayDay loan rigged systems — without their voices at the forefront, and in the newsrooms, inside schools, and in the publishing houses and the actual process of writing their own stories, then we have the tin ear writers and prognosticators and anthropologists and psychologists, the elite, the highly connected, the bias of the white man and white woman writing about us.

They get it wrong 90 percent of the time!

Now, if this graphic doesn’t run chills up and down your spine, then, you are not following the overlords’ script. Catch up please!

UNSIF 17 UNSDGs

Dig down and listen, watch, read: And it’s not pretty, and it’s not slick, and it’s not all east coast, Ivy League, London Bridges Falling Down stuff.

Finally, I was reading about Charles Bowden last night. Found a piece in Literary Hub, and then went backwards to see one of his talks. Rough guy, but an amazing chronicler of people.”Eulogy for a Visionary: On the Grim Narrative Introspection of Charles Bowden — Leath Tonino Considers His Brief Correspondence with the Author of Murder City”

The piece was written and published December 2021, even though Chuck died in 2014.

Here, a gravel-voiced Chuck talking to the California Commonwealth Club. Mostly about the lies around the war on drugs.  I talked with Chuck years ago, in the 199os, in Juarez and El Paso. I was working on things for the two newspapers, and he was working the narcotraficante stories. That’s a whole other story, of my life maybe some autofiction is due, but for now, here, from the young writer who wanted to interview Chuck in Tucson, but never got the chance since Chuck died at 69 in his sleep. His piece is from the heart, and good.

My first thought: Murder City, solid title.

It was 2011 and I was scraping by in San Francisco, spending hours at the public library, tinkering with writing projects, browsing the stacks during breaks. The name on the book’s spine—Charles Bowden—was familiar yet unfamiliar; essayist Rebecca Solnit, a neighbor with whom I’d recently taken a long walk, had referenced Bowden, telling me that “he could make your skin crawl by describing a Q-tips factory.” Uncertain what that meant, but eager to learn, I slipped Murder City from the shelf, intending to start it when I got home, sip some vodka, have myself a relaxed Friday evening.

Little did I know that Bowden, a veteran investigative reporter from the South-west, author of twenty-five-plus books about polluted rivers, crooks in silk suits, flies swarming over pooled blood, collapsing communities, contract killers, rattlesnakes, and desire, had a slightly different plan. In a 2010 NPR interview, he summarized his approach to crafting stories on the page: “My dream is to invite a reader into a room and pour a nice cup of tea . . . and then nail the door shut.”

So, I end with a dead man, his words not dead, the voice alive on YouTube, and what an interesting conversation it would be with him now, as it would be with Andre Vltchek, with Kevin Zeese,  with David Graeber. So many others, long gone, or just gone. Even Gonzo Thompson.

I have been coming to this city [Ciudad Juárez] for thirteen years, and naturally, I have, like everyone here, an investment in the dead. And the living. Here is a story, and like all stories here, like Miss Sinaloa, it tantalizes and floats in the air, and then vanishes. — From Murder City

More from Bowden, at the Lannan Foundation.

Charles Bowden (1945-2014) was the author of scores of books including A Shadow in the City: Confessions of an Undercover Drug WarriorDown By the River: Drugs, Money, Murder and FamilyJuárez: The Laboratory of our Future; and Blood Orchid: An Unnatural History of America.  In Murder City: Ciudad Juárez and the Global Economy’s New Killing Fields, he presented a devastating chronicle of a city in collapse where not just the police and drug cartel members die as violence infects every level of society. Luís Alberto Urrea, author of The Devil’s Highway, said “…in Murder City Bowden plunges in head-first, without a parachute. There are moments when the book threatens to burst into flames and burn your hands.” Bowden was a contributing editor for GQ and Mother Jones, and also wrote for Harper’sThe New York Times Book Review, and Aperture. Winner of a 1996 Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction, he lived in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Post Script — One story is worth a thousand points of stabbing (not lights). Two here to end this missive. If you haven’t figured out how ugly the overlords and then the Eichmann’s are, then, gain, read, live, walk the streets:

The queen and her minimum wage payout, oh those billionaires! The pay for the 20-hour-per-week job is £9.50, or the equivalent of $12.96 an hour. That reflects the U.K.’s new minimum wage, which will rise from £8.91 an hour now to £9.50 an hour in April.

Queen Elizabeth II tours Queen Mother Square on October 27, 2016, in Poundbury, England.

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“I apologize to the person who appeared before me and to our entire community for having failed to meet the high standards that we expect of our judicial officers, and that I expect of myself,” Alexis Krot said in a statement posted on the court’s website.

The statement was dated Tuesday, days after she ordered Burhan Chowdhury to pay $100 for failing to get rid of weeds and other vegetation at the rear of his property. The judge’s apology followed a TV report about the case and criticism about how she treated the man.

“Shameful! The neighbors should not have to look at that. You should be ashamed of yourself,” Krot said during the online hearing. “If I could give you jail time on this, I would.”

Chowdhury, a native of Bangladesh, explained that he was weak with cancer. A son, Shibbir Chowdhury, said he helps his father with the yard but was out of the country at the time last year.

The post Requiem for a People-Centered World Dream first appeared on Dissident Voice.

The hounding of Julian Assange leaves honest journalism with no refuge

It is no accident that Julian Assange, the digital transparency activist and journalist who founded Wikileaks to help whistleblowers tell us what western governments are really up to in the shadows, has spent 10 years being progressively disappeared into those very same shadows.

His treatment is a crime similar to those Wikileaks exposed when it published just over a decade ago hundreds of thousands of leaked materials – documents we were never supposed to see – detailing war crimes committed by the United States and Britain in Iraq and Afghanistan.

These two western countries killed non-combatants and carried out torture not, as they claimed, in the pursuit of self-defence or in the promotion of democracy, but to impose control over a strategic, resource-rich region.

It is the ultimate, ugly paradox that Assange’s legal and physical fate rests in the hands of two states that have the most to lose by allowing him to regain his freedom and publish more of the truths they want to keep concealed. By redefining his journalism as “espionage” – the basis for the US extradition claim – they are determined to keep the genie stuffed in the bottle.

Eyes off the ball

Last week, in overturning a lower court decision that should have allowed Assange to walk free, the English High Court consented to effectively keep Assange locked up indefinitely.  He is a remand prisoner – found guilty of no crime – and yet he will continue rotting in solitary confinement for the foreseeable future, barely seeing daylight or other human beings, in Belmarsh high-security prison alongside Britain’s most dangerous criminals.

The High Court decision forces our eyes off the ball once again. Assange and his supposed “crime” of seeking transparency and accountability has become the story rather than the crimes he exposed that were carried out by the US to lay waste to whole regions and devastate the lives of millions.

The goal is to stop the public conducting the debate Assange wanted to initiate through his journalism: about western state crimes. Instead the public is being deflected into a debate his persecutors want: whether Assange can ever safely be allowed out of his cell.

Assange’s lawyers are being diverted from the real issues too. They will now be tied up for years fighting endless rearguard actions, caught up in the search for legal technicalities, battling to win a hearing in any court they can, to prevent his extradition to the United States to stand trial.

The process itself has taken over. And while the legal minutiae are endlessly raked over, the substance of the case – that it is US and British officials who ought to be held responsible for committing war crimes – will be glossed over.

Permanently silenced

But it is worse than the legal injustice of Assange’s case. There may be no hack-saws needed this time, but this is as visceral a crime against journalism as the dismemberment of the Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi officials back in 2018.

And the outcome for Assange is only slightly less preordained than it was for Khashoggi when he entered the Saudi embassy in Istanbul. The goal for US officials has always been about permanently disappearing Assange. They are indifferent about how that is achieved.

If the legal avenue is a success, he will eventually head to the US where he can be locked away for up to 175 years in severe solitary confinement in a super-max jail – that is, till long past his death from natural causes. But there is every chance he will not survive that long. Last January, a British judge rejected extraditing Julian Assange to the US over his “suicide risk“, and medical experts have warned that it will be only a matter of time before he succeeds.

That was why the district court blocked extradition – on humanitarian grounds. Those grounds were overturned by the High Court last week only because the US offered “assurances” that measures would be in place to ensure Assange did not commit suicide. But Assange’s lawyers pointed out: those assurances “were not enough to address concerns about his fragile mental health and high risk of suicide”. These concerns should have been apparent to the High Court justices.

Further, dozens of former officials in the Central Intelligence Agency and the previous US administration have confirmed that the agency planned to execute Assange in an extrajudicial operation in 2017. That was shortly before the US was forced by circumstance to switch to the current, formal extradition route. The arguments now made for his welfare by the same officials and institutions that came close to killing him should never have been accepted as made in good faith.

In fact, there is no need to speculate about the Americans’ bad faith. It is only too apparent in the myriad get-out clauses in the “assurances” they provided. Those assurances can be dropped, for example, if US officials decide Assange is not being cooperative. The promises can and will be disregarded the moment they become an encumbrance on Washington’s ability to keep Assange permanently silenced.

‘Trapped in a cage’

But if losing the extradition battle is high stakes, so is the legal process itself. That could finish Assange off long before a decision is reached, as his fiancee Stella Moris indicated at the weekend. She confirmed that Assange suffered a small stroke during a hearing in October in the endless extradition proceedings. There are indications he suffered neurological damage, and is now on anti-stroke medication to try to stop a recurrence.

Assange and his friends believe the stroke was brought on by the constant double strain of his solitary confinement in Belmarsh and a legal process being conducted over his head, in which he is barely allowed to participate.

Nils Melzer, the United Nations expert on torture, has repeatedly warned that Assange has been subjected to prolonged psychological torture in the nine years since he fled into Ecuador’s embassy in London seeking asylum from US efforts to persecute him.

That form of torture, Melzer has pointed out, was refined by the Nazis because it was found to be far more effective at breaking people than physical torture. Moris told the Daily Mail: “[The stroke] compounds our fears about [Assange’s] ability to survive the longer this long legal battle goes on. … Look at animals trapped in cages in a zoo. It cuts their life short. That’s what’s happening to Julian.”

And that indeed looks to be the prize for US officials that wanted him assassinated anyway. Whatever happens to Assange, the lawless US security state wins: it either gets him behind bars forever, or it kills him quietly and quite lawfully, while everyone is distracted, arguing about who Assange is rather what he exposed.

Political prisoner

In fact, with each twist and turn of the proceedings against Assange we move further from the realities at the heart of the case towards narrative distractions.

Who remembers now the first extradition hearings, nearly two years ago, at which the court was reminded that the very treaty signed by Britain and the US that is the basis for Assange’s extradition explicitly excludes political cases of the kind being pursued by the US against Assange?

It is a victory for state criminality that the discussion has devolved to Assange’s mental health rather than a substantive discussion of the treaty’s misapplication to serve political ends.

And similarly the focus on US assurances regarding Assange’s wellbeing is intended to obscure the fact that a journalist’s work is being criminalised as “espionage” for the first time under a hurriedly drafted, draconian and discredited piece of First World War legislation, the 1917 Espionage Act. Because Assange is a political prisoner suffering political persecution, legal arguments are apparently powerless to save him. It is only a political campaign that can keep underscoring the sham nature of the charges he faces.

The lies of power

What Assange bequeathed us through Wikileaks was a harsh light capable of cutting through the lies of power and power of lies. He showed that western governments claiming the moral high ground were actually committing crimes in our name out of sight in far-off lands. He tore the mask off their hypocrisy.

He showed that the many millions who took to the streets in cities around the world in 2003 because they knew the US and UK would commit war crimes in Iraq were right to march. But he also confirmed something worse: that their opposition to the war was treated with utter contempt.

The US and UK did not operate more carefully, they were not more respectful of human rights, they did not tread more lightly in Iraq because of those marches, because of the criticism beforehand. The western war machine carried on regardless, crushing the lives of anyone who got caught up in its maw.

Now with Assange locked up and silenced, western foreign policy can return comfortably to the era of zero accountability that existed before Assange shook up the whole system with his revelations. No journalist will dare to repeat what Assange did – not unless they are ready to spend the rest of their days behind bars.

The message his abuse sends to others could not be clearer or more chilling: what happened to Assange could happen to you too.

The truth is journalism is already reeling from the combined assaults against Khashoggi and Assange. But the hounding of Assange strikes the bigger blow. It leaves honest journalism with no refuge, no sanctuary anywhere in the world.

• First published in Middle East Eye

The post The hounding of Julian Assange leaves honest journalism with no refuge first appeared on Dissident Voice.

Collusion: The End of Nature, Brought to us by Zoom

The only way to break through a totalitarian (lite) thinking is to continue using blunt force, or airy force, to expose this massive experiment in turning Americans into screen dwellers. The new ghetto is the screen.

The lockdown might be lifted, physically, for the Covdians, but in the minds of these people, the world is now shifting to the high tech, fiber optic, 5G/6G satellite-directed world.

Imagine this event, on the ecosystems of my area, now, a virtual event. It is embarrassing that science-minded people want public and community participation over zoom. No depth to why it has to be “virtual,” and no apologies for being so dense.

Or, are they dense? Are they loving this hybrid, virtual, remote work mentality? You know, I was just interviewed by the State of Oregon for a state job. The thing was on Zoom, and there were three there and me here. One question was around “how would you make virtual meetings and intakes more engaging . . . . ?” This is the new normal, alas, and this huge shift of bricks and mortar life, into the AI void, and with these huge (massive) transfers of trillions to a very few felons of the elite class, these scientists who have grants and faculty positions and tenure, they will not lead the way anywhere.

And their world is all fancy web-based crap, like cool photos, imaginary graphics, all compressed and collected to make people say, “Oh, isn’t it wonderful how wonderful the scientists working in the wonderful natural world are!!’

 

In this Greta-and-Company-Can-Fly-to-GLasgow-to-Protest-Their-Governments’-Fossil-Fuel-Lunacy, many people I know are so happy now that Zoom is a fixture in their lives, and that they do not have to brave the Highway 101, or the weather, or the climate warnings. These people who might be interested in ecology and marine preserves and environmental policy are usually on the left trough of the manure pile of politics called Democrats. They are, of course, the new Brown Shirts, but call them Green Shirts, or Zoom Shirts. Their world, and the one they are ushering in since youth, have no say in how things SHOULD be run. It is not a real world, but one that is full of maps and podcasts and TED Talks and faux interactive chats and Zooms:

We are talking about 14 square miles designated as a marine reserve. Then some overflow for seabird protection area. This is, again, embarrassing. There is an interpretive center at Cape Perpetua, one that I have been at for in-person events. There are parking spaces. There are so many ways these great thinkers and planners could have organized an in-person event, even with their defective masks and asinine social distancing. That, my friends, will not happen. More and more youth are getting more and more skills with the mouse, the CAD programs, with Publisher and Photoshop. Their world is a world where billionaires own everything, and living in a van with full bed, TV, running water, hell, that is what youth are going to be having to accept as more and more dictatorial thinkers run the world, run events, run programs and educational frameworks.

Between Florence and Yachats lies the Cape Perpetua area, a biodiverse recreation mecca home to lush coastal rainforests and deep cultural history. But past the coastline also lies the largest Oregon marine reserve. The Cape Perpetua Marine Reserve is dedicated to the research and conservation of ocean ecosystem, where take of wildlife and human development is restricted. Cape Perpetua area also contains two Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and a seabird protection area. Unlike the reserve, these protected areas allow limited take in their boundaries.

Within the reserve, creatures large and small live in various habitats from sand, gravel, to some of the most biologically diverse rocky intertidal habitats anywhere on the Pacific Northwest. These creatures live in a unique ecosystem shaped by the ever-changing weather and tides. Some days, strong winds will pull cold, oxygen-rich water and plankton up to the surface in a process called upwelling, while on other, more stagnant days, the water loses its oxygen and becomes hypoxic.

Because of its dynamic environment, the Cape Perpetua Marine Reserve is home to a plethora of wildlife such as whales, sea lions, seals, pelicans, cormorants, rockfish, and intertidal invertebrates that fuel a complex food web between the land and sea. (source)

It’s a fear pogrom that is both sophisticated beyond Big Brother, and yet, right to the primary brain center of reptilian stupidity and violence.

Here, Edward Curtain over at Dissident Voice, covers this fear, this divide, etc. Source.

Edward Curtin returns to discuss deep politics and what links the assassination of JFK, 9/11, and Covid-19. No president since Kennedy has dared to buck the Military-Industrial-Complex, including Trump, who is part of the same system that produced both Obama and Biden. He discusses the 1967 CIA memo which told mainstream media to use the disparaging term “conspiracy theory” to quell all deviation from the official narrative, and how this propaganda technique has continued to function from JFK to 9/11 to Covid-19. Many of the same actors involved in the MIC and 9/11 continue to be involved with the drug companies, CDC, WEF, WHO, Gates Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation. It’s very obvious, but the story is so frightening people don’t want to do any homework. Too many people think there is this war going on between the right and the left, in the larger frame of reference there is no difference, it’s the warfare state against the regular people, the rich versus the poor. The 4IR is an effort for total political and economic control of peoples all over the world. He believes the purpose of the vaccine mandate is for political control. Ultimately, we are in a spiritual war. The Geopolitics & Empire Podcast conducts interviews with high-profile guests on geopolitics and international affairs seeking to gain insight from experts on both the left and the right as to the true nature of current events. Read other articles by Geopolitics & Empire, or visit Geopolitics & Empire’s website.

The tricksters are at it and have been for decades. The worker — that is teachers and faculty, too, especially — is the enemy. The students are the enemy. So many billions pumped into studying the brain, psychology, neurosciences, behavioral psychiatry, etc. I saw this in 1983 when I was a graduate student, teaching college English. Some of these long in the tooth folk, who want their Vermont or Hawaii lives, but still be the teacher of record for our campus, UT-El Paso. That’s Texas, and already in the 1980s these folk wanted hybrid classes, on-line. Imagine that, critical thinking and debating writing classes, on line! Before ZOOM.

Oh, big companies would “give” laptops to workers — Ford, IBM, HP — not as gifts, but to extract MORE work out of the 40 hour week, and that is now 50 or 60 hours. That is, well, the beginning of technology destroying every aspect of our real selves.

Now, community colleges are up shit creek, pre-planned-demic, but now, too. Imagine, more and more pieces of the state budget pie reduced for Podunk community colleges — vital places of not just learning, but community events, incubators of thinking, and connections to much more than just academia. So, more and more raised tuitions, more and more part-time faculty hired, more and more hybrid classes, and now, the Zoom Doom. Imagine, one teacher on Zoom running a class of 80, 90? This is the new normal — kill the person.

The online option seems to work for all kinds of students. When the financial-aid team returned to campus in August, Bohanon opened up her schedule for in-person appointments. For the first week, no one registered to see her. She told her supervisor she wanted to add online appointments again, and reserved 8 a.m. to noon for online and the rest of the day for in-person walk-ins. “In the morning when I come in — full,” she says. Afternoon? Nothing.” Now her schedule is full every day, but all her appointments are virtual.

The push-and-pull between in-person and online courses continues for students at Southwest, but it may be starting to shift toward the latter. One of the pieces of conventional wisdom about community colleges during the pandemic is that students often dislike or fear online learning — a refrain repeated often at Southwest. But more than a year and a half after colleges transitioned to large-scale distance learning, many of the students at Southwest who persisted have begun to favor online sections over the nearly 40 percent of courses being taught in person.

Rebuild? Time for a revolution inside K12 and higher education. Regroup? Revolt neoliberalism and illiberalism and the constant attack on education. Or, attack on schooling. Constant attack on learning! These so-called leaders have collapsed, and they have crawled under their retirement accounts, and they are seeing-hearing-speaking no evil. This is the Chronicle of Higher Education, a very retrograde, conservative, cover-their-asses-rag!

The new normal is being accepted by the masses, but the mealy mouthed academics and those on the peripheral of academia are coming out like flies on shit:

Southwest and other community colleges may just have to wait out Covid. Even if the virus doesn’t completely go away, the risks may get lower and people may become more accustomed to living with it. “I really think that’s going to be the biggest thing, is time,” Brown says, “and people feeling it’s safe to completely return to, we won’t call it normal, but like the new normal.”

If there’s one thing community colleges should not do, says Eddy, of William & Mary, it’s go back to normal. “It would be a mistake to think, I just need to wait this out to come to a time where we’re going to have more openness,” she says. After a decade of gradually declining enrollments, the pandemic has brought community colleges to an inflection point where they have a chance to — may even be impelled to — make some changes, many perhaps overdue.

Read the article, and look between the lines. These people are stating that the planned pandemic made virtual learning more onerous because students didn’t have laptops and Wi-Fi, and didn’t know what a JPEG or PDF were. Oh, you get it, don’t you? Get those students free (US taxpayer paid for) computers and free (US taxpayer paid for) Wi-Fi. Bootcamps for Microsoft Office 10.0 Adobe workshops. Get those students to be on-line warriors. Take it, and you can’t leave it or you will be cancelled from society.

And this all goes back to the Zoom event, about Cape Perpetua, about 12 miles from where I live, via Highway 101. You think there will be regard for people who want trails for hiking, trails for biking, rivers for kayaking? You think that the overlords want to have us out in nature, out along highways and by-ways? These overlords want to own the world, the land, the forests, the farms, all of it, and they want security, and they want no trespassing, and they want no by-standers and witnesses.

The scientists just take it, because that’s what mechanistic folk do — strip away the A from STEAM — Science Technology Engineering Arts and Math.

This is the motherfucker, the mentality, the demented thought process, and the messed up media, all the brainwashed fuckers of the world, in a nutshell:

“I Don’t Think We Should Ever Shake Hands Again.” Dr. Fauci Says Coronavirus Should Change Some Behaviors for Good

These are madmen:

Madman and madwoman —

Joe Biden CDC Director Rochelle Walensky Takes Over Institution in Crisis - Bloomberg

Terrorists and war criminals —

World Economic Forum: a history and analysis | Transnational Institute

Billionaires ‘R Us —

Davos 2020: What is the World Economic Forum and is it elitist? - BBC News

This is it, man, the last frontier — education! Covid car, online programs, internet-access solutions. If you read this site, The Chronicle of Higher Education, there is not pushback, no discussion of the 4IR, the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Oh, the senseless stupidity of it all, the Covid Van.

MahoneyCar-1109.jpg
The post Collusion: The End of Nature, Brought to us by Zoom first appeared on Dissident Voice.

The Julian Assange Case

Chris Hedges talks to documentary filmmaker and investigative journalist John Pilger about the upcoming appeals hearing in London for the Julian Assange case.

On Sept. 26, Yahoo! News published “Kidnapping, assassination and a London shoot-out: Inside the CIA’s secret war plans against WikiLeaks.” The article detailed discussions within the CIA to kidnap or assassinate Julian Assange. The revelations came a month before a hearing in Britain’s High Court that will see the U.S. government appeal a decision that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange cannot be sent to the United States to face espionage charges. These revelations also coincided with the arrest of an Icelandic man who played a major role in the FBI’s case against Assange and who has now admitted he lied in his testimony about Assange to U.S. federal investigators. The most recent revelations, coupled with the numerous legal anomalies of the Assange case, including leaks that show that the Spanish security firm at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London where Assange sought refuge for seven years, turned over recordings of his meetings with his lawyers to the CIA, amply illustrate that the judicial pantomime carried out against Assange is a political persecution led by the U.S. government and the CIA because of embarrassing and damaging revelations about the inner workings of the US military, intelligence agencies and the political class repeatedly exposed by Assange and WikiLeaks. The goal of the U.S. government is to shut down WikiLeaks, and organizations like WikiLeaks, and to make an example of Assange, who if he is extradited to the United States faces 175 years in prison, to dissuade others who might consider replicating his courageous reporting. The upcoming appeals hearing is on October 27 and 28 at Britain’s High Court, London.

The post The Julian Assange Case first appeared on Dissident Voice.