Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Free Market Violence

As a species, community is integral to our health and well-being. The disintegration of community — especially among indigenous peoples — due to Free Market violence, poses a significant obstacle to healing from previous traumas. As we seek means of reintegrating community, we will simultaneously be dealing with new traumas associated with ongoing Free Market violence. Unless we end this violence, we will not be able to cope with these disorders.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Under globalization, state policy on everything -- including energy -- is determined by investment bank portfolios. An example of those is the oil portfolio of Goldman Sachs, who incidentally also financed the election of President Obama. His intervention on behalf of that investment led directly to the BP Gulf oil spill. I assume other portfolios, including nuclear power, will likewise be lavished with preferential treatment by the Obama administration.

Privatization, the conversion of public assets into private Wall Street portfolios, is the main mission of politicians under globalization. Synchronized with the efforts of UN agencies like the IMF and World Bank, these portfolios are now cannibalizing public health and education worldwide. Obama, like his idol Ronald Reagan, is not in a trance; he believes in the Free Market doctrine.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Organizing Energy

Some of my best friends are political researchers and educators. A few of them make a living at this, but most are volunteers.

While I once did research and used it for popular educational purposes, my forte was organizing--bringing motivated people together for a common purpose. Often I used research to inspire others to become motivated and active. Thus many of our community actions were effective in changing the way political business was done.

As our society falls apart, the hunger for authentic leadership will grow. Since that usually comes in the form of organizers operating outside the system, resources required to sustain organizing will need to come from supporters outside the established philanthropy industry.

Keeping the energy flowing that organizing involves means abandoning false hopes and false models offered as distractions by financial system gamers and other elitists hoping to keep the system in play. That energy will need to be replaced by people once accustomed to pocketbook diplomacy as their means of charity. Serious public interest organizers simply don't come in that package.

Absent a sweeping revolution in public consciousness, genuine organizers will continue to find the path they've chosen a hardship, and most will fade from fatigue. The few that remain steadfast will do so because their communities recognize them for the treasures they are, despite the massed communication efforts to disparage their reputations, values and ideals. When they start holding rummage sales and bake sales for organizers, we'll know we're finally getting somewhere.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Mind Games

As Rudolph Ryser observes in his report on the UN climate protocols conference in Bangkok, the US, UK, and EU continue to play mind games over the human rights of indigenous peoples. Despite the fact that the most significant progress in the UN human rights regime -- since it was instituted as international law in 1948 -- was the 2007 UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, these colonial and imperial powers are now arguing before the UN Human Rights Council that these are not human rights.

While it is no secret that Canada and the US blocked human rights for indigenous peoples for decades in order to continue plundering their territories for natural resources with impunity, it is not widely known that the EU is an important ally of these rogue states. Even as pariahs like China, Nigeria, and Indonesia routinely murder indigenous activists within their own borders, US and European states and corporations often help fund these atrocities.

With the evolution of the US-controlled NATO into the enforcement arm of the UN, human rights are in danger of becoming what the Pentagon and U.S. State Department say they are--a situation that must be stopped. As Dr. Ryser notes, the only way for indigenous peoples to survive this attack by Western powers is to prohibit unpermitted entry into their territories by corporations and militaries alike.

Friday, April 01, 2011

From the Ruins

While the global anti-war protests that took place in early 2003 rejected the projection of economic power through military warfare, the European anti-austerity protests this winter rejected the projection of economic power through political warfare. The protests in North Africa, Central Asia, and the Middle East this spring reject both.

Unlike the 2003 protests, which sometimes included civil disobedience, the more recent ones include acts of sabotage, as well as armed insurrection against tyrants functioning as proxies for world economic powers. Protests in Latin America against austerity imposed by international economic powerhouses like the IMF and World Bank over the last decade have incorporated massive strikes, while in North America, comparatively tame consumer boycotts of goods made with child or slave labor have made some inroads into transforming our otherwise privileged consciousness.

As civilizations and societies succumb to the aftershocks of austerity, including collapsing public health and safety, the world will routinely become more chaotic, violent, and dysfunctional. At that not so distant point in time, we will have to find new ways of discussing and building a future from the ruins.