Friday, June 29, 2012

 

Nuking Civil Rights

Wrong Kind of Green reposts a Black Agenda Report expose on how Southern Companies purchased the negro leadership from Atlanta to Washington. As the beneficiary of Obama's largesse, the Southeast US energy giant now owns many a black politician, as well as the Southern Christian Leadership Council--once led by Martin Luther King, Jr. While black politicians bask in the sunshine of Southern's bribes, the black poor reap the results in the form of radioactive disease.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

 

Personalize Occupy

The lesson of liberation is that when confronted with gangsters as government, the opposition (in an obviously asymmetrical power relationship) has to be resourceful in order to defeat the hoodlums at the helm. Seeing how the multitudes of Occupy are unlikely to acquire sufficient armaments or organization to beat them militarily, it is imperative that the movement include an element of personalization to its educational curriculum. While it’s important to provide historical context and analysis to motivate the multitudes, it is equally important to identify the individual monsters responsible for legalized larceny and extortion.

Luckily, any local Occupy can do the research necessary to identify the scoundrels in their area, and publish their personal information online. Information like what they’ve done, where they live, and who they associate with. Using this information as a basis of organizing personalized actions to confront them with moral sanctions at their homes, country clubs and places of business would help to make them think there might be consequences for their social misbehavior, despite the privileges guarded by public institutions like the courts and police.

General complaints about evil bankers and crooked politicians are fine for introductory education, but getting personal makes it possible to start demanding accountability–or else.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

 

Steaks on the Table

Silent Weapons Quiet War explores computer-regulated social energy systems for shifting wealth to the worthy few. Through such methods as economic shock testing, the self-destructive state is achieved by converting beasts of burden (currently characterized as the 99%) into steaks on the table for the 1%.

Monday, June 25, 2012

 

Out of Control

Writing at ProPublica, Abrahm Lustgarten examines the toxic waste well injection industry's track record over the last twenty years. With 680,000 waste wells nationwide -- where structural failures are routine -- communities in the US that supply drinking water are now faced with the increasing threat of aquifers contaminated with acids, asbestos, PCBs, phenol and cyanide. No longer confident in an EPA that doesn't even collect all data, let alone make sense of it, the citizenry exposed to such wastes as sewage, dioxin and radium must now deal with a present and future where millions of oil and gas wells intersect leaking waste wells and municipal water supply systems. Originally conceived as an alternative to surface dumping of industrial wastes, the out of control deep well injection experiment is no longer out of sight, out of mind.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

 

The Morality of Debt

At Occupy 2012, Nicholas Mirzoeff examines the morality of debt and the emerging consensus.

Friday, June 22, 2012

 

Preventing Discussion

As Indigenous delegations bring their message about sustainable development to the UN conference in Rio, the Brazilian military detains hundreds of Indigenous delegates enroute. Posted in Climate Connections, Indigenous Environmental Network photojournalist Ben Powless captures the images of the day.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

 

Total War

With war as America's largest export, it should perhaps come as no surprise that warmongers with experience in government, or even the war-making industry, should end up in executive roles in the non-profit sector. After all, they're in academia and media, and occasionally get awards like the Nobel Peace Prize, so why not the leadership of human rights NGOs?

Of course, capturing and consolidating media in order to promote war as a way of life was expensive, but given the constant flow from the US Treasury through the corporations that now own both mainstream media and the armaments factories, money really isn't a problem. With the bailout of Wall Street investment firms that are heavily invested in fossil fuels and military weapons, their ability to purchase governments abroad and humanitarian organizations at home is essentially unlimited for the foreseeable future.

As noted at Wrong Kind of Green, even the executive director at Amnesty International USA is now an insider from the halls of institutionalized aggression posing as humanitarian relief.  Under such scenarios as this, we should anticipate synchronized propaganda in the form of advertising that advocates war as the highest and noblest calling. Indeed, Amnesty International USA has already begun such a campaign in support of NATO.

Given that NATO is the "humanitarian war" enforcement arm for US/UN/EU joint aggression, the psychological warfare conducted in education, advertising and social media can now focus on infiltrating and corrupting human rights organizations--leaving only civil society networks and Indigenous liberation activists as a viable opposition. How viable they remain, of course, depends on their ability to strategically outmaneuver the Government/Wall Street/BINGO Axis.

Key to this resistance, I would note, is freeing our imagination. Playing by the old rules of the game is a losing proposition. If our enemies are pulling out all the stops in order to destroy humanity in their perverted psychodrama, then total war is all that is left. How we conduct that war will make all the difference.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

 

Little Urban Achievers

Megan Erickson discusses how Free-Market bullies from Ronald Reagan to Bill and Melinda Gates use education reform as a means to keep the focus on blaming teachers and underprivileged students, rather than examining the system of inequity that keeps little urban achievers dependent on, and subservient to, the captains of capitalism.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

 

Undermining Indigenous Liberation

The Corbett Report interviews Global Research associate Andrew Gavin Marshall about the history of foundation philanthropy established by the American robber barons -- i.e. Ford, Vanderbilt, Carnegie, and Rockefeller -- as engines of social engineering to create "consent to the hegemony of the ruling class." As funders of think tanks and universities in order to create a managerial elite over the last century (through the design of social sciences for social control), the foundations, says Marshall, make the world safe for capitalism by channeling criticism away from fundamental change. In what he describes as recolonizing the world today through social genocide, Marshall notes that foundation funded NGOs function as capitalist missionaries, extending the imperial project worldwide, and thereby undermining Indigenous liberation.

Monday, June 18, 2012

 

Naming Names

Cyrano's Journal reports on insider trading, self-dealing, rule waivers, and other conflicts of interest at the Federal Reserve. While the Government Accounting Office noted the problems, Senator Sanders from Vermont has named names in yet another chapter of the biggest scandal in US history.


Sunday, June 17, 2012

 

Accelerated Christian Education

While state monopolies on education are problematic, state support of pseudo-education is tragic. As Bruce Wilson reports on the new voucher program in Louisiana, religious schools there are filling children's minds with nonsense and bigotry. While the Accelerated Christian Education curriculum denies the science of evolution, it is the distortion of racism by their fellow travelers at A Beka and Bob Jones University that is most disconcerting. As Wilson notes, portraying the Ku Klux Klan as a respectable agent of social reform, construing South Africa's apartheid as multiculturalism at its best, and praising the Trail of Tears forced march of Cherokees from Appalachia to Oklahoma as a blessing that led these heathens to Christ, is a bit much to swallow.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

 

Soft Power Hard Time

Writing at Dissident Voice, Wei Ling Chua observes that as a Western dissident, Julian Assange does not enjoy the soft power of a Chinese dissident. Rather, by exposing war crimes of the US and NATO, he has been attacked by Western governments, corporations, and the media that serves them. As Chua notes, if he were a Chinese dissident, he would probably be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize; instead, he is threatened with extradition, prison, and even execution by Western powers that hypocritically harp about human rights and freedom of the press.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

 

Black Vanguard

In James Forman's book The Making of Black Revolutionaries, the former organizer of the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) -- that led the sit-ins against American apartheid, and risked their lives in support of Black communities in Mississippi Freedom Summer -- recalled the challenges of working with the established Black elites of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) who wanted to control the activists.

Writing today in Black Agenda Report, Bruce A. Dixon examines how corporate funding has corrupted Black establishment organizations like the Urban League, NAACP and SCLC, to the extent that they have become neutralized in conflicts over environmental racism. Having bought themselves a generation of Black politicians like Barack Obama, the nuclear power industry -- and other corporate sectors heavily reliant on public treasury largesse -- have now found reliable toadies in the conventional Black vanguard.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

 

Choice and Force

In another post from Traffick Jamming, Free Irish Woman writes about the distinctions and commonalities of trafficking and prostitution, and the gender slavery they are a part of. As she astutely observes, we need to examine what we understand about the concepts of choice and force.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

 

Green Capitalism

As Brenda Norrell notes at Intercontinental Cry, green capitalism is not the solution to the climate change crisis, it is part of the problem--allowing the profiteering countries of the world to continue to stalk and destroy nature for profit. In fact, she observes, the devastating effects of capitalism are at the root of the reason why indigenous peoples worldwide subscribed to the Cochabamba Protocols, that call for the elimination of poverty through the redistribution of wealth and the restoration of the earth's equilibrium.

In an earlier post at Intercontinental Cry -- Strategies That Have Failed -- IC editor and publisher Ahni Schertow excerpts core concepts from Getting Free, the book by James Herod about ending capitalism. I encourage those interested in the topic to give it a read.

Monday, June 11, 2012

 

Imagine

Writing in the Toronto Star, Rick Salutin acknowledges the debt Canadians (and, I might add, the world) owe to the Quebec Student Strike for making the unimaginable possible.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

 

Defenders of Oligarchs

Writing at Dissident Voice, Collin Harris discusses the police and Occupy with Our Enemies in Blue author Kristian Williams. As the armed defenders of oligarchs, the menacing and ubiquitous presence of police, says Williams, serves as counterpoint to Occupy's movement against inequality. As the perceived legitimacy of the police is waning, he notes, we need to find ways of insuring public safety without ubiquitous surveillance and routine violence. As he says,

A fair, just, and equal society is not one that will have anything like our present police institution.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

 

What's Going On

Discussing how technological weapons are now being used against civilian populations, Julian Assange interviews leading analysts from Europe and the US about total communications surveillance, privatized secret police, and how the popular use of the Internet is changing the narrative of what's going on.

Monday, June 04, 2012

 

Ultimate Non Sequitur

Call something green -- be it jobs, economies, or consumer items -- and progressives fall all over themselves to embrace it. No matter that the green sociopolitical project (now on a planetary scale) means handing over more power, profits and social control to the very elites who caused the global financial crisis, and are responsible for the policies that caused the climate change catastrophe.

Knowing this about progressives, Free-Market planetary bureaucracies like the World Bank and their friends on Wall Street deploy bromides in abundance, all the while undermining democracy, indigenous sovereignty, and even environmental sanity.

Fighting this deception requires making those connections in the public mind, not arguing over the technicalities of how to bureaucratize the future of humankind. After all, that's how we got into this mess; handing all control over our lives to the UN and transnational banking corporations is the ultimate non sequitur.

Sunday, June 03, 2012

 

Christian Jihad

Writing at Talk to Action, Bruce Wilson exposes the Christian Jihad meetings taking place after hours in America's public schools. Good News Clubs and other Christian fundamentalist indoctrination like Child Evangelism Fellowship, reports Wilson, are using the public schools to generate support for murder of non-believers worldwide--a legacy concept that in earlier times engendered genocide against Native Americans. As part of the New Apostolic Reformation that propelled neopentecostal politicians like Sarah Palin into the mainstream media, American evangelicalism is reinvigorated by their Biblical-oriented calls to crusade.


Saturday, June 02, 2012

 

Beyond Their Wildest Dreams

Collective amnesia and social attention deficit often erase the memory required to understand where new phenomena like green greed came from. Of course, greed isn't new, nor is fraud, but this particular combination might be new to those just encountering it. It's why we have memory systems like archives, stories and films.
 
In the 20th century, industrial extraction was unapologetically brutal--hiring propagandists, ideologues, field agent provocateurs and thugs to silence critics and crush opponents. They still do that, but now they deny it, or conceal it with confusing cover stories.
 
Likewise, they always co-opted less committed critics, but not to the present degree of comprising vertically-integrated industries where they have their own green NGOs and news services that enable them to promote green greed as sustainable, even humanitarian.
 
Initially, the Wise Use movement in the 1980s sought to intimidate community activists opposed to environmental destruction, literally threatening and assaulting them. After Congressional hearings on this extraction industry-financed thuggery in the 1990s, they trotted out the concept of Free-Market environmentalism, whereby extraction industries and  real estate developers could cash in on public environmental sentiments with minor concessions--often little more than public relations gimmicks. With the development of climate change scams like REDD -- perhaps the epitome of green greed -- securities traders and other sectors of the financial services industry are now getting in on the action.
 
Looking at the lineup of players involved, the overlap between REDD and Wise Use is remarkably consistent; even the usual suspects in the bank bailouts that led to global austerity measures have a continuous presence.
 
One interesting aspect of REDD and Wise Use is the fact that both are anti-democratic by design -- thereby corrosive of accountable governance -- and both view Indigenous peoples rights and Fourth World sovereignty as targets to be strategically undermined and destroyed. In the 1980s and 1990s, extraction industry-financed organizations and networks were used to foment racism and violence against American Indians over treaty-protected resources. The same funding went to political campaigns to elect anti-Indian officials willing to thwart federal law on behalf of the industries.
 
Building on their earlier success, they have now corrupted international institutions like the United Nations, facilitating the development of anti-democratic, anti-Indigenous, anti-environmental programs under the guise of saving the planet--a public relations ploy perhaps beyond their wildest dreams as little as a decade ago. Then again, maybe not.

Friday, June 01, 2012

 

Keeping on Track

One percent of the global population might reap most of the proceeds from most of the theft in the world, but that doesn't mean the other ninety-nine percent oppose them. In fact, the one percent have many supporters among the ninety-nine, so much so that they in essence comprise a formidable impediment to democracy--even without the oligarchs.

For Occupy organizers, an estimate of the situation might turn up numbers more in the 9.9% range rather than 99% when it comes to a committed opposition to the values of the 1%. Given something along those lines, a pro-democracy strategy might want to consider such things as right-wing populism hijacking the momentum of Occupy, and discuss ways to avoid that.

Some would say that the only thing worse than socioeconomic panic is religious hysteria. Seeing how we are experiencing both at the same time, there are likely to be diminishing returns on an agenda based on outrage alone; as we've seen before, mobilizing resentment is relatively easy compared to building a movement. Keeping a movement on track depends largely on how we understand its composition.

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