Tuesday, March 31, 2009


A Sick Society

America is a sick society; heavy drug use is merely one symptom of that sickness. Another symptom is the consumption by this five percent of humanity of a quarter of the world's resources. Perhaps the most telling, though, is that Americans also constitute twenty-five percent of the global market in children trafficked and sold as sex slaves, an industry that is growing as US consumers can now purchase kidnapped children over the Internet for rape and torture by appointment.

Monday, March 30, 2009


Fighting for Our Lives

Before November 30, 1999, most people in the world had no idea what the World Trade Organization (WTO) was or did. The anti-globalization special forces changed all that. N30, the Battle in Seattle, and the WTO became part of history.

Had there been no special forces, however, no one would have known the devious plans of this secretive United Nations agency working in tandem with transnational corporations to enslave the world. The marchers in Seattle would have had their thirty-second news spot, and disappeared from public memory.

But as the world knows, even a mainstream media blackout and subsequent cover-up by government officials were not enough to prevent N30 from being the downfall of the Seattle Chief of Police, and the Battle in Seattle from becoming a badge of honor for the pro-democracy movement.

And that only happened because some of the anti-globalization activists were thinking strategically about communications in conflict, and adapted their tactics accordingly. Those engaged in conventional marches and seminars were minor news items, easily dismissed by media and officials alike. They would not change the world, the Independent Media Center images from the lockdown at 4th and Pike would.

By outflanking network news through use of live streaming on the Internet, anyone in the world could watch Seattle police beating seated young people singing freedom songs, while television talking heads claimed protestors were running amok. The age of netwar had arrived.

Last December, the United Nations met in Poznan, Poland to hatch a new scheme for transnational corporations and investment banks to control the world: it was called REDD, a Ponzi scheme for carbon-market trading that would make the Wall Street heist of today look like chicken feed. Indigenous nations sent delegates to protest this life-threatening fraud by the UN and its agencies like the IMF, World Bank, and WTO. Civil society groups spoke in support of the aboriginal peoples, UN officials closed them out, and the world never knew.

This December, 2009, ten years after the Battle in Seattle, the world's first nations and Fourth World peoples will attend the UN Conference on Climate Change held in Copenhagen. Whether the carbon-market cartel will be allowed to take over the world, without a fight, depends on what happens there. Will the anti-globalization street-fighters be a no-show as in Poznan, or will they, once again, remind the planet's netizens that, "another world is possible"?

Sunday, March 29, 2009


Up Close and Personal

Isolated in the Capitol bubble, members of Congress are well-insulated from our outrage over their high crimes and misdemeanors. Living in the lap of luxury with lobbyists, while we starve, distorts their world view. Fortunately, they also have local offices where we can stop by and let them know how we feel about the ongoing fraud they play a key role in.

When that doesn't work, we can always demonstrate outside their private residences in their home districts, which I believe are also public information. Like the crooks they take bribes from, it's time for them to feel our pain up close and personal.

Saturday, March 28, 2009


Poobah Problem

I have to laugh at pro-globalization news outlets that cover for politicians like German Chancellor Angela Merkel with a straight face. After all, Merkel's comment that the global leaders won't be able to solve all the world's economic problems at once -- referring to next week's G-20 poobah gathering in London -- is laughable. Global leaders, as we've seen time and again, don't solve problems, they create them. Expecting Merkel, Obama, or any of the rest of these scoundrels to be anything but con artists is just plain silly.

Friday, March 27, 2009


Following the Money

The Obama Administration commits $30 billion in aid to Israel. As reward for exemplary human rights conduct toward Palestinians? No, just for buying him his job.


Obama Crime Family

The Chicago Tribune looks at the Obama crime family, in particular, Obama's Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel. Meanwhile, the New York Times archives remind us that Clinton's Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers (now Obama's Director of the White House National Economic Council) created this mess ten years ago. Reuters weighs in against the heist run by Obama's Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. And finally, Harper's reports on the roadblock to Obama's appointment of con artist Gary Gensler to head the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.


Power Trip

The United Nations, much like its member states that systematically steal and daily destroy indigenous peoples' property, understands the value of public relations and the power of process. By denying a voice to indigenous peoples in UN climate change talks, the bureaucrats of the UN assure UN agencies like the IMF and World Bank a free hand in continuing their plunder of indigenous peoples' resources, wealth and knowledge.

Working in tandem with state propaganda and corporate media, the UN is thus able to get away with public relations stunts like affirming the human rights of indigenous peoples, while at the same time doing everything in its power to undermine those rights. Innocent consumers of UN PR, desperate for signs of hope for humankind, eagerly accept this propaganda as fact within a vacuum of information outside the Internet.

By keeping the world ignorant of what transpires within the UN, this international institution can act with impunity toward indigenous peoples and issue unchallenged claims to supporting human rights--conceivably the ultimate power trip.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Designed to Fail

Tom Ferguson explains to The Real News why the Obama plan is of the bankers, for the bankers, and by the bankers.



This Congress could have been the most loved in our two hundred twenty-two-year history. How? By zeroing out everyone's consumer debt as a condition of bailing out the banks. They created the havoc that forced us into credit survival, so if they get a fresh start, so do we.

Instead, this Congress is the most loathed. Why? Because they not only bailed out the crooks and left us hanging, but also allowed the crooks to use the taxpayer-financed bailout to stuff their private gym bags with cash on their way to the Caymans.

By the way, has anyone heard a peep out of Pelosi about closing the Congressionally-sponsored loopholes that criminalized the banks in the first place? I didn't think so.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Military Money Pit

Sometimes statistics float by us without giving them a second thought. After all, we have a lot on our minds. But one statistic raised in this three-part interview on The Real News bears repeating: the United States of America spends more on its military than all the other countries in the world combined.

Why? Because Congress and the Cabinet are on the military industry payroll.

But are all those jobs at Lockheed, Boeing, and General Electric worth it? Maybe for the employees and stock holders, but not for the rest of us whose taxes disappear into the military money pit. For us, monetizing mass murder is a losing proposition.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


American Holocaust

I'm not sure how I missed American Holocaust, but then again, how many American Indian documentary filmmakers can you name? They managed to pack a lot into half an hour. Take a look.



Modern netwar is a useful field of study for those engaged in the war of ideas, indigenous versus industrial being a prime example. During a trustee v faculty conflict at my alma mater in 2007, I compiled some helpful articles on the topic. Students enrolled in the Activism and Social Change program as well as the media studies department said they found them especially applicable to the situation. As we prepare for the battle over perceptions of the climate change challenge, an understanding of the tools of perception management and media influence is perhaps our most potent weapon.

Sunday, March 22, 2009


Acts of Congress

Rolling Stone's Matt Taibi tells the tale of how gaming the system that turned Big Brother into a holding company was actually engineered by investing in acts of Congress--enabling what Taibbi describes as the coup d'etat's coup de grace.

Friday, March 20, 2009


Target Rich Environment

Ken Silverstein at Harper's illustrates the simple hypocrisy at work in the AIG scandal, namely U.S. Senator Chris Dodd selling bailout bonus loopholes to AIG in exchange for campaign contributions. In other articles now featured in his online column, Silverstein exposes the scramble by U.S. Representatives like Charles Schumer to cover their tracks from the past by sending up voluminous amounts of flak in the present political climate of hostility. I guess it has occurred to some politicians that the rising resentment unleashed against banking executives might soon be headed their way. If you think this is fun, wait till someone starts naming the private equity beneficiaries of the banking scandal--the really rich who used these banks to hollow out our entire economy and deposit it in their personal offshore accounts.

Thursday, March 19, 2009


Return of the Ancient Ones

Kara Briggs examines what happens when your ancestors visit unexpectedly.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


To Those Who Come To Learn

An NWIN TV tribute to Skokomish elder Bruce Miller: Teachings of the Tree People.


A Winning Strategy

In this New York Times article on the political theatre surrounding the AIG scandal, topping the list of Ponzi vendors bleeding the US Treasury dry is Goldman Sachs. Goldman Sachs, some might recall, was also a major backer of President Obama's campaign, and is, among other things, a major investor in oil.

With its venture capital replenished at taxpayer expense, Goldman Sachs is now positioned to play a major role in the ultimate Ponzi scheme: carbon-market trading. Carbon-market trading, the shell game devised by UN agencies like the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, is potentially the most lucrative scam of all time. After all, life itself hangs in the balance; merchants of fear will have a field day raking in the proceeds.

Which is where communication comes in. Knowing in advance the governments that comprise the ruling member states of the UN will do everything in their power to promote carbon-market trading as the only solution to climate change, focusing our discussions on more effective remedies might attract an audience from those growing skeptical of promises by criminalized banks and corrupted governments. Responding to the carbon-market trading propaganda and advertising embedded in mainstream media is a losing tactic; developing our own message and sticking to it is a winning strategy.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Hope Among the Ruins

The latest issue of Fourth World Journal explores holistic practices for maintaining and restoring community health. Reading these interesting essays reminded me of one I wrote last summer about how to return our society to a healthier mindset. I hope these offerings by scholars from around the globe help readers to discover the order of things, and consequentially, to find hope among the ruins.

Monday, March 16, 2009


Masters of the Universe

Pepe Escobar on the masters of the universe.


Child's Play

In his comments as part of a Real News panel on Afghanistan, Sunil Ram, a contributing editor of the private defense journal of the Royal Canadian Military Institute, noted that stability has rarely been an objective, let alone goal, of US foreign policy. Rather, says Ram, generating instability -- aimed at rivals like Russia and China -- has been the rule of US interventions since World War II. The transition from ideological conflict to resource wars has not changed that.

As the Pentagon gears up its machinery of destabilization on the African continent, we should expect to see increasing chaos and violence similar to the situation perpetuated by NATO in Afghanistan and the US in Iraq. While this policy portends massive bloodletting among Third and Fourth World peoples attempting to navigate between mercenaries and warlords, the anarchy that ensues will not actually benefit Americans outside the military industry, but it will harm Chinese commercial interests in African natural resources.

One might be tempted to ask why the US Treasury is regularly emptied to pursue a policy of disrupting free trade, but then one has to suspend disbelief to accept the conventional wisdom that US troops are only used to steal oil and mineral wealth. The unpleasant truth of the matter is that US operational policy -- a secret kept from Congress since Truman signed into law the national security state -- is concocted for fun and profit by mischief-makers in the National Security Agency, without regard to truth or consequences. Child's play, when you think about it.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Indigenizing Media

In the preface to his book Circuits of Culture, Jeff Himpele observes that cinematic media and their circulatory systems precipitate the historical process intrinsic to cultural life, political forms, and social movements. By disseminating indigenous cultural identities and ways of knowing in video form, Indigenous filmmakers, says Himpele, define themselves as contemporary cultural producers. Subverting the boundaries between culture, sociality, and politics through competing elements of identity production, is what Himpele claims as the significant modern phenomenon of indigenizing media and decolonizing imagination.

Friday, March 13, 2009


The Right to be Free

BBC News special report on Papua's independence struggle includes undercover film footage of Papua leaders discussing the right to be free.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Double-Edged Sword

As noted by Mother Jones, AFRICOM -- the Pentagon's newly established U.S. Africa Command -- provides an enormous business opportunity for both arms merchants and the mercenary industry. The problem, though, is when hired guns like Blackwater are used "to kick out indigenous communities" in order to gain access to mining areas for US, Canadian and European corporations. As a complement to the US State Department mission to gain a foothold on the resource-rich continent, American-trained death squads might be seen as an effective counter to China's aspirations there, but employing assassins to work under the guise of aid and development -- euphemistically referred to as security and infrastructure -- is indeed a double-edged sword.


Sino Breakdown

In yesterday's post, John Robb predicts that the rapidly collapsing Chinese export economy will result in a collapse of law and order in China and much of Southeast Asia. Citing lack of legitimacy and use of paramilitary violence by the Chinese state as contributing factors, Robb suggests imminent breakdown in Chinese society; reading between the lines, we have to ask if this also portends a breakup along Soviet lines.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Criminal Injustice

The US prison system incarcerates one quarter of the world's prisoners. Half of them are Black.


Closing the Door

As noted at Black Agenda Report, the Obama Administration has closed the door on national health care by limiting health forum participants to the insurance industry. With help from US media, Obama will apparently have no trouble denying healthy lives to most Americans, even though a majority of them support universal health care.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


State of the World

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime has released its Global Report on Trafficking in Persons--a look at the forces at play in modern slave markets, and analysis of the state of the world's response.


On the Road

Colin Murphy writes from the hills of Wicklow, where Henry Woolf performs Beckett and Shakespeare on the back roads of rural Ireland.

Monday, March 09, 2009


Feeding the System

Real News Cafe begins their series on the US agenda in Central Asia by asking, "Why are we in Afghanistan?"

Sunday, March 08, 2009


Nothing to Lose

In his latest blog offerings, our colleague David Ronfeldt looks at Three Strains of Terrorism, as well as some historical background on apocalyptic millenarianism, which we link to in our post title.

Saturday, March 07, 2009


Exercise in Credulity

After all the central bank shenanigans of the last decade, you'd think citizens would be a little more leery of government intentions, but apparently not. Even the privatization of public wealth through investment bank Ponzi schemes hasn't yet shaken the people's faith in centralized problem-solving.

Perhaps the most looming example of this misplaced trust is in the international arena of adapting to climate change. Through the auspices of the United Nations, the central governments of the world are crafting plans to manage all aspects of modern life. Nothing will be left untouched by the UN and its member states.

UN agencies like the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and World Trade Organization will coordinate with central banks around the globe to organize flows of cash, resources, pollution and armies to back up their agreements. Human rights and democratic development will take a back seat to these plans.

While citizens of these member states rightly have an interest in seeing climate change problems handled openly and effectively, the reality is that backroom deals between governments and industries are already taking place. Their plans, in effect, are not oriented toward solving these problems, but rather how to take the most money from public treasuries for themselves, while simultaneously managing public relations campaigns to convince us they are saving the planet and humankind. In other words, same old.

While this news may be disheartening, it is nevertheless true; to keep the faith in the system that is presently devastating our global economy and environment, is indeed an exercise in credulity.

Friday, March 06, 2009



The accumulative aspects of the TIMN model contribute to our understanding of the current governance trend toward subsidiarity. Autonomy of first nations (i.e. Scots, Basques, Sami) and self-determination of tribal minorities -- alongside state structures -- allows for simultaneous development of more cohesive and effective loci of decision making, and by reference more democratic participation.

One of the best kept secrets of social evolution -- due to their invisibility in mainstream media -- is this resumption of governance by first nations, for the most part absent the formation of independent states. Having since World War II gained greater control over their education, development and resource protection, these roughly two billion people on all continents recently challenged the UN and its member states to honor international law by allowing their delegates a seat at the table on climate change negotiations.

Tribal peoples may have been crushed, but they have demonstrated remarkable resilience, and promise to make the Indigenous Peoples' Movement a force to be reckoned with.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009


A Pragmatic Resolution

This article on climate change and the media supports two key misconceptions that perpetuate political illiteracy. The first is that issues (i.e. economy, health, environment) can be separated; the second is that the media is an independent entity.

In reality, our environment, health and economy are all connected. Media, too, for that matter.

But political literacy cannot be achieved on any scale without the democratization of media, and so-called issues cannot be solved without the democratization of capital. The privatization of public wealth that enabled the control of politics can, however, be reversed; the fact that the concentration of private equity that undermines all noble human endeavors was accomplished by theft, makes this public task a moral as well as a pragmatic resolution.


Presidio Politics

As noted in the Bay Guardian, the Presidio of San Francisco (part of Golden Gate National Park) is about as inappropriate a place as one could come up with for a private museum financed by a man who made his fortune from slavery and child labor. The Fisher family wealth, made from their GAP empire, might buy favors from less scrupulous San Franciscans like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and US Senator Dianne Feinstein, but it can't buy the soul of the city. As for politics, it should be interesting to watch the interaction between the new San Francisco Board of Supervisors and San Francisco's Congressional delegation; it's what San Franciscans live for.

Monday, March 02, 2009


Theatre of War

Alarmism is such a highly integrated industry that it is sometimes difficult to tell where it all begins and ends. Lobbyists parade "experts" in front of Congress, Congress declares war (on drugs, terror, crime, etc.), media inflames the concern, public panic ensues, and the cycle is repeated until all the above hyperventilate themselves to exhaustion.

Given the lucrative nature of the industry for both proponents and opponents of alarmist responses, thoughtful and effective alternatives to militarized policy are rarely considered, let alone enacted. Successful interventions aimed at disrupting this vicious cycle must take into account both the inherent conflicts of interest of the industry, as well as the highly emotional reactions within this public drama.

Preventing public panic, while no easy task, would seem to be the only point in the cycle where sanity might insert itself.

Sunday, March 01, 2009


Circuits of Culture

IJOC's Jade Miller offers an interesting book review of Circuits of Culture by Jeff Himpele.


The Imperial Catalyst

Two oxymorons key to understanding the impending chaos in the AfPak theatre of operations are 1. military intelligence, and 2. representative democracy. Applicable equally to the host countries as well as the invading forces, these oxymorons guarantee tragedies, atrocities and perpetual escalation of hostilities. Until, of course, the imperial catalyst exhausts itself and the overall situation is suitably criminalized.

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