Saturday, October 30, 2010

Trappings of Culture

In a consumer society, settler culture not only assimilates indigenous peoples into the dominant market relationships, it also assimilates the trappings of indigenous culture as yet another commodity. For those looking for meaning and purpose beyond consumption, the trappings are representative of a more authentic cosmology and philosophy, but achieving these visions entails a lot more effort and risk than acquiring tribal accoutrements. Having been chastised for appropriating domestic native rituals and attire, the safer route for the superficial is in adopting foreign autochthonous paraphernalia and practices, with the added benefit of its exotic marketability.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


The Dominion has obtained documentation of NGO collusion with the Canadian government in excluding First Nations from major environmental accords. As I noted in my post on the orthodoxy of radicalism, those who view activism as a career are always willing to sell out principles they profess to protect. As predictable and controllable entities, the Big Non Government Organizations (BINGOs) -- much like corporate media -- function as another branch of the establishment. As such, attacking them requires using the strategy first developed by T.E. Lawrence.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Enemies of the State

To be arrested, incarcerated and tortured by agents of the Joint Terrorism Task Force in the United States requires no acts of violence at all. It simply requires exercising your rights under the constitution to peaceably assemble and voice your dissent to US policy. Thus demonizing peace activists, the US Department of Justice under Obama equates Quakers with Al Qaeda in terms of being enemies of the state. In the public mind, this equation is intended to justify depriving them of equal rights under the law, an unequivocal act of tyranny.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


One week ago, the US government blocked the electronic funds transfer host for Wikileaks in retaliation for its expose on the Afghan war. Friday, with the release of The Iraq War Logs, Wikileaks now offers five new ways to donate to its investigative journalism. That ought to keep the Pentagon, State Department and White House busy.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Transforming American Culture

Walking away from farce, ridiculing the ridiculous, attacking fraud comprise components of rejecting an anti-democratic system. Proportional representation, like plurinationalism, is a different system, not a reform. Democracy entails a wholly different set of relationships and distribution of power than what our institutions presently promote.

To create a democratic society in the US would require transforming American culture to the degree that we would no longer recognize ourselves. In essence, we would have to experience a revolution of ideas as earth-shaking as 1968.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Pandering to Christian Bigotry

The clear message in the Five Steps to Tyranny videos is that demonization is a political tool, used by politicians to suppress dissent and subvert solidarity. Two current examples not in the series are the US Department of Justice raids last month against peace activists by the Joint Terrorism Task Force, and the recent passage of legislation in Uganda mandating the death penalty for homosexuals. Even the calvinist Millenium Development Goals of the UN serve as pretext for ethnic cleansing of indigenous peoples. All of these examples are in synch with Christian dominionism, such as that promoted by President Obama’s friend Rick Warren. Pandering to Christian bigotry is one of the fastest roads to tyranny in America, and is well documented on the Talk to Action blog. What the International Transformation Network of Christian fascists might be willing to do under a theocracy is perhaps best answered by Canadian author Margaret Atwood.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Poverty Pimping

Anyone who has observed politicians and developers in action knows that the quickest way to destroy community cohesion is through programs like the war on poverty. As it and other myriad schemes by governments to use the plight of the poor to enrich themselves, the cover of moral sanctity is essential to success. On the global scene, the UN Millenium Development Goals — auspiciously aimed at poverty reduction — contain the seeds of warfare, genocide, and ethnic cleansing–all in the name of charity. Lined up against indigenous self-determination and sovereignty in this battle are the World Bank, IMF, and poverty pimps like William Jefferson Clinton, Bill and Melinda Gates. Caught in the crossfire are native peoples whose idea of appropriate development does not include the extraction of their resources by transnational corporations backed by the armies of UN member states.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Financial Warfare

The United States of America has retaliated against Wikileaks using financial warfare to prevent the transfer of electronic funds by donors to the whistleblowing organization.

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Murderous Mission

Talk to Action examines the homophobic International Transformation Network, an association of charismatic evangelicals pursuing global Christian theocracy through demonization. As a movement bent on acquiring political power through the subversion of mainstream Christian denominations -- like the Presbyterian, Anglican and Roman Catholic churches -- the prayer warriors have used receptive heads of state and legislators to demand such things as the death penalty for homosexuality. As noted by Rachel Tabachnick, a significant aspect of their power play is the conversion of native peoples worldwide through the disingenuous use of racial reconciliation rhetoric. In reality, the ITN is on nothing less than a murderous mission.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

America's Brown Shirts

Recent news about the Pentagon recruiting Mexicans to join the U.S. military in exchange for green cards reminded me of a post by Juli Meanwhile five years ago, in which she so eloquently critiqued the Pentagon sponsorship of the Boy Scouts. Evidently, all that mass marketing and hot air by the top brass was for not, as the boys in brown opted for playing at home rather than fighting abroad.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Threat to the Police State

As Food Not Bombs approaches its thirty year anniversary of distributing food to economic refugees and disaster victims, Stephen Lendman looks at the ongoing harassment of the organization by the FBI and local police. As providers of meals to protestors at the RNC and DNC conventions, Food Not Bombs members have been targeted by the Joint Terrorism Task Force, giving a green light to local police departments to imprison them for voicing opposition to the American empire while ladeling bowls of soup.

Internal government documents obtained by ACLU suggest high-level concern that they’re turning Americans away from militarism, instead advocating social justice, including quality education, universal health care, and good living wage/essential benefits jobs – the direct opposite of current US policy under either dominant party.

Supported by Amnesty International in its efforts to feed the poor and educate the homeless, Food Not Bombs activists have been arrested over 1,000 times by San Francisco police alone.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Tyranny of Obama

In the aftermath of Justice Department raids on antiwar activists, Cindy Sheehan writes about media complicity in the tyranny of Obama.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Human Migration

As one of the inevitable consequences of the global crises generated by globalization, human migration is a growing aspect of life in the 21st century. Given the projected disruptions from climate change, widescale migration is perhaps a permanent social phenomenon. At the Fourth World Social Forum on Migration held in Quito, activist scholars will discuss such things as human mobility and refugees, as well as the intersection of displaced rural residents, indigenous peoples, and migrants worldwide. Mapping out this aspect of the likely future for humankind, they will address the core issues of diversity, coexistence, and sociocultural transformations now taxing our resourcefulness.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

People of Conscience

I remember thinking two years ago about the young peace people and older people of faith arrested for planning to demonstrate against the Republican and Democratic national conventions. Watching the celebrations of militarism taking place in their Midwest cities was bad enough, but the overt displays of consumerism -- with the logos of corporate sponsors visible everywhere -- must have been hard to stomach.

This morning I thought of the Quakers and Catholic Workers and young peace people in those Midwest cities again harassed by the Joint Terrorism Task Force. With the lists of people against US imperialism in their database, and their budgets fortified from earlier exercises against democracy, the SWAT teams last week broke down doors, ransacked homes, and terrified more innocents who've chosen to voice their dissent.

Eleven years ago, before the 9/11 infrastructure of social control was in place, police in the city of my birth were humiliated by young people who refused to be locked down or out of the discussion about globalization, and many were wrongly incarcerated, tortured, and no doubt blacklisted for their acts of citizenship and humanity. Today, people of conscience in America are serving time in federal prison for opposing our daily export of homicide from bases and ports and board rooms across our country.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Organizing Opposition

The September 24 raids by the U.S. Department of Justice Federal Bureau of Investigation has prompted the formation of a national committee opposed to FBI repression of American activists engaged in attacking US foreign policy in Colombia and Palestine, as well as denouncing US military aggression worldwide.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

A Judicious Orientation

I was thinking the other day about the Public Good network, and tried to pinpoint what it is that energizes the individuals that comprise this milieu. In terms of intellect, the combination of experiential learning and academic studies seems to have fostered a philosophical attitude – perhaps founded on family upbringing – that finds expression in political engagement.

The unique energies of these individuals, in turn, are based on their special spirits, abilities, and powers.

In many, the spirit of a noble lineage -- combined with an ability to communicate coherently -- is what enables them to exercise their powers effectively. In most, it is the combination of the powers of logic, literacy, and a judicious orientation that allows them to apply intellectual analysis to social conflict--what makes this network particularly functional in the war of ideas.

Friday, October 01, 2010

The Price of Admission

The Art of the Steal is not only a superbly crafted documentary about high crimes by the rich and powerful, it is also an inside look at the ruthlessness of the philanthropy industry exemplified by the notoriously duplicitous Pew Charitable Trust. For art devotees as well as champions of the underdog, the film is an inspirational story as an expose well done. For anyone who has been trampled on by benefactor bullies like the Pew oil magnates and their money grubbing offspring, seeing this misanthropic bunch of scoundrels get their comeuppance is well worth the price of admission.