Archive for January, 2013

French In Mali To Protect Uranium; Tuaregs Defend Rights

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Or something like it. Governments in the developed world and their ancillary allied forces, example France in Mali and their paid off mercenaries from the neighboring countries are going after the Islamic forces who as far as our media are concerned, are all Al Qaeda. The Tuaregs of the north African desert, seem to be independent operators, they want independence from the south Mali forces, but the Islamic extremist forces forced out the Tuaregs, or at least made them junior partners.

I first became aware of the Tuaregs when they were in exile in Libya and Muammar Gaddafi gave them electric guitars to while away the time. Some of them became professional musicians and being a DJ at the time I scarfed up their music thinking I had found something unique, which it was.

This is a review of the band I was aware of Tinariwen.

This is some of their music, these guys rock.

The article below is a decent one about the Tuareg/Gaddafi connection. “Like those groups that choose to be known as First Nations in North America, the Tuareg have insisted that they are a people with a distinct history and territory, and therefore a right to their own lands or state. Comprising up to 10% of the populations of the countries where they find themselves, the total Tuareg population in Niger is over one million, and around 900,000 in Mali. Smaller numbers are in Algeria and Burkina Faso, while the Libyan Tuareg population may once have been small but has been increased in recent years by Gaddafi’s policy of opening Libyan borders to Tuareg refugees from other states. This large, diverse set of populations, shares a strong sense of history and, at crucial times in recent decades, of destiny. Fierce Tuareg independent movements, in effect insurrections, were launched in the 1990s in Niger and Mali. These were not the first attempts by Tuareg to achieve autonomy, and to emancipate themselves from an oppressive, subordinate relationship to the nations that took shape in the Sahara. Independence movements of various kinds are spread through the twentieth century; and there is evidence of Tuareg conflict with other groups going back to their earliest appearance in the region, some thirteen hundred years ago. These are people well used to doing battle. And some of this battle has involved Libya. In the 1980s, Libyan Tuareg were involved in an armed liberation movement; in the 1990s Tuareg, supported by Libya, were involved in civil war in Mali. And of special relevance here: Gaddafi’s regime espoused the cause of Tuareg at least in so far as working to ensure that Tuareg in Mali and Niger were able to reach some kind of negotiated agreement and a temporary peace.” From Hugh Brody article in Open Democracy.

And this about the roots of the Malian revolt. The blowback effect for Libya but for the Tuaregs this goes back to a longer struggle. As the quote above would imply.

A good background for the struggles in Mali between Tuareg, French colonialists, Malian National forces and Islamic fundamentalists. “The uranium mines in neighboring Niger and the uranium deposits in Mali are of particular interest to France, which generates 78 percent of its electricity from nuclear energy. Niger’s uranium mines are highly polluting and deeply resented by the population, including among the semi-nomadic, Tuareg people who reside in the mining regions. The French company Areva is presently constructing in Imouraren, Niger, what will become the second-largest uranium mine in the world.” From Socialist Worker article, some background on French interest in the region.

There is a lot more, I basically see the Tuaregs as being in a situation like the Kurds, spread over several modern nation states created when the colonial powers divided Africa and the Middle East between them in the 19th and early 20th centuries. the resulting nationalities placed many traditional peoples in a situation where they became minorities and divided up between several nation states. The Tuaregs simply want to rectify the situation and are being frustrated in their legitimate concern for their traditional society. Even if they are the slavers and gold traders of history, well they are great guitarists and in current terms, that was ancient history. Interesting though if that is the historical basis for the antagonism between the Tuaregs of the North and the black Malians of the South. There is the classic historical interdependence of nomadic and sedentary cultures that cuts across Asia and Northern Africa. Something that went on for centuries. In the last three centuries sedentary societies destroyed the last power bases of nomads, especially in Central Asia. But that is another area of interest of mine that I will write about later.

Angst Repair

Monday, January 28th, 2013

The words slip, they drip, conform to specifications, linguistically the palate is shaped by the teeth, jaw, glottal stop as in “yaaka?” in Nez Perce, meaning “Black Bear” and “decumbent urinators” re females in the new season of Futurama.

I am stalling, looking for some inspiration to come to me. I feel sad that I missed my communist meeting last night at the Peace center, it makes me wonder if I am really a radical anymore, or if I ever truly was. I mean sure I enjoyed throwing a brick through a corporate window or two back in the day, and I enjoy being in the thick of a demonstration, but cops won’t bother me anymore, they seem to think I am old and harmless. I comes in handy when people all around me are getting their skulls cracked with billy clubs and I get “are you alright sir?”

Anarchist Brick Throwers.

When all else fails go for nostalgia.

It reminds me of my own days as a brick thrower, granted we did it at night and didn’t wear black masks, but the concept of energy in action is really fun.

And then there is the controversy that San Francisco loves when someone ups the drama with a new twist to the entertainment mentality that predominates in the city. Its not like in LA where we expect it to be on the part of a celebrity on the Tube, in San Francisco, being as small as it is, it is the entertaining masses on the street. Some young Turk comes to town and makes a splash and everyone gets up in arms over it. Anybody can play, just be interesting enough to make the conversations rage at that nights party.

As I like to say, tempest in a teapot. It seems I am in good company, Cicero, one of my hero’s is the originator of the phrase “in De Legibus, circa 52BC. The translation of his “Excitabat fluctus in simpulo” is often given as “He was stirring up billows in a ladle.” Other cultures have versions of the phrase in their own languages. The translation of the Netherlands version is ‘a storm in a glass of water’, and the Hungarian ‘tempest in a potty’.” from The Phrase Finder. I found two typos in that post, I wonder about the Latin.

I just thought it would be cool to remember some more stuff out of the past. like the Nazz “Under the Ice”

Or Emerson, Lake and Palmer “Lucky Man”

But again I am stalling because I am not really into anything at the moment. Just killing time until its time to make dinner.

Passages Malibu is such bullshit. I quit drugs because I had to. I liked them too much and was too habituated to coping as a time killer when I was at loose ends, only my body giving out and making it impossible for me to keep up the habit made me quit. I also quit when I went traveling but inevitably after I came home, that old habit would get me, bored out of my mind, too lazy to do anything creative about it, I would follow the path of least resistance and be down there on San Julian or where ever, out on the street with the losers and dream merchants, taking in the action, or lack there of, a little nervous, but mostly just looking for the inevitable, some guy with a nervous look, walking along with little balloons of dope in his mouth, spitting out dime bags one or two at a time.

Ah nostalgia. I am thinking of the not to distant past. But that was years ago and now my habits are regular, Denny’s and a movie and in bed by midnight with Adult Swim on the tube. Last night my GF and I went to see “Silver Linings” and the guy had the same outfit as me, the same gray sweats and jacket with silver Nikes. His excuse was being let out of a mental institution, mine is having a kidney transplant. It was very white bread, but fun, Robert De Nero had his best role since Goodfellas. My GF and I ate at a Fish Taco place, saw the movie at the discount matinee, we drove all the way to Anaheim Hills for this. Then all the way home I angsted over my other girlfriend driving my car and messing it up by buying a used tire when she got a flat in it driving to some club where she was stripping in. Luckily my regular GF only got upset when I stressed over how she drove into the Vons gas station, letting people get ahead of us in line. She drives fast but lets people cut in. All this simply because I rented a car for my GF so my girlfriend could use my car and I walk to the Food 4 Less to get discount Salsa and stuff. I wanted to have a three way meeting of the minds over this car business, it can’t go on like this, my unemployment has run out… I really need to get a life.

Personal Changes And Musing On Khazaria.

Saturday, January 26th, 2013

My roommate moved out. After two years, the guy had so much stuff stuck in that little room, it took three pickup truck loads to get everything. I don’t know how he slept in there. I will be cleaning that room for days. He was pretty clean, but I will be scrubbing anyway, I want the room to be spotless. At least there are no cockroaches. Anybody want to sublet a room in Long Beach with a private bath and patio, look me up.

I am beginning to wonder if I will find a job. I interview at places that seem to be sure things and I get nothing. I really don’t want to join the exodus into low wage land, but I am going to run out of benefits soon now that I have a kidney. No wonder some people don’t want to get a transplant, their SSDI doesn’t run out. Not that you could live on that, at least not decently, but it is steady money.

Unemployment runs out end of this month. I sent for my last check. I wonder if I will be eligible for another extension? With my luck at job hunting, I could use it.

GF is getting used to having my car. I am wondering if she will be able to adjust when I need it full time again. School starts next month and I will need it to get to classes. If she could get a job I would buy her a used car, but without a job even a used car would be beyond her income.

I am pretty much back to normal except I get tired early and don’t have any urge to hit the night life now that I am no longer dependent on a machine.

Lost my wallet yesterday, somebody returned it minus the $200 cash I had in there. I guess it was their finders fee. I really was thrown for a loop all my ID was in there. I guess I was lucky the person only took the cash.

Been thinking about psychedelics, would like to take an acid trip again. Its been a long time. Last time was in the eighties and I was seeing alien reptile people take over human bodies. It was one of those disconcerting trips, my girlfriend was totally gone, and I was half way alien. Haven’t taken acid since to check and see if the process has continued, been halted or reversed. All these zombies around, makes me think the process has evolved.

I still have to take pills, lots of them, immuno-suppressants mostly. Makes me more likely to catch colds and the flu from strangers and my GF’s kids. I wear a mask when at the hospital and pharmacy. Speaking of pharmacies, whats with the long lines? I went to Kaiser 24 hour pharmacy in Harbor City and it took a couple of hours to get out of there. People hacking and wearing masks all over the place. Must be a flu epidemic.

Just finished a book on Eastern Europe in the Early Medieval period. “East Central & Eastern Europe in the Early Middle Ages” edited by Florin Curta.

It was a text book out of Ann Arbor, cost $100, why are text books so damn expensive? Anyway only one chapter on the Khazars was really useful, it mentioned the Jewish trading syndicate the Radhanite, the author implied that there might have been a Jewish conspiracy to recreate Israel, and at that time the Khazars accepted Judaism as the state religion, at least there are coins that would imply that and some letters. I find it to be fascinating and if I can find any more about this group I will see if I can incorporate them into my novel about the 9th century aliens visit to Eurasia. I would love to create a romantic Jewish Heroic figure for this period. So far though I am stuck in Byzantium, and trying to get back in to Bulgaria, although I might have them detour through the Abbasid Empire instead. I don’t know exactly why I want a Jewish hero, perhaps it is because at that time in history the Jewish people were underdogs.

Presidential 2nd Inaugural Speech Comments

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

I saw bits of the Inaugural speech by President Obama Monday morning as I waited to see the Kidney doctors at Cedar Sinai. But other than platitudes I did not catch anything substantial. Comments later that night on the news channels were not particularly helpful. I clicked on ABC and listened to the speech in full.

President starts out with the self evident truths from the declaration of independence. Then he goes into the Lincoln era statement that no country can survive half slave and half free. He spoke of protecting vulnerable ones, celebration of hard work and enterprise, collective action needed to preserve individual freedom. Spoke of unity, cheers from crowd when he said a decade of war is ending. Seize moment together, rising middle class determines wealth of nation, need to rebuild infrastructure and schools, reject idea that we must choose between old and young. Freedom is not reserved for the lucky or the few. Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid do not sap the nation, but free us to take risks. Respond to threat of climate change, none can avoid the destruction of storms and fires. Preserve planet commended to our care by God. We do not require perpetual war. Engagement around world reduces suspicion and fear. Support democracy around world. Must be source of hope for poor and marginalized. Justice, human dignity are values we subscribe to, Seneca Falls, Selma, and Stonewall, big cheer for saying women need equal pay, gay brothers and sisters need to be accepted equally and immigrants need to be accepted and not expelled. Our generations task is to make values of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness a universal value for all. Cannot call name calling reasoned debate. Rhetorical flourishes, and he concludes.

The speech seems to reiterate his commitment to dealing with the deficit, curbing medicare costs to strengthen system, immigration reform and do something about global climate change. He didn’t mention gun control specifically but he did mention right for all to grow up safe in America. Some talk of infrastructure and school improvement was mentioned and ending wars overseas. Nothing too specific, but a general outline of a direction. He seems to have given up on Guantanamo and didn’t mention the war on terror which is no longer the proper term to use for the campaign against Al Qaeda. He didn’t even mention Osama Bin Laden being killed. Nice of him. He mentioned gays several times, even included Stonewall as a pivotal civil rights date along with Seneca Falls for Women’s Rights, Selma for Black Civil Rights and now Stonewall for Gay Rights. All in all a liberal should be happy, a radical should be suspicious and a conservative unhappy with that speech.

The UKGuardian sees it as an unabashed defense of the concept of collective action in a classic left liberal sense.

The Economist sees the same, with the big tent being a Democratic tent. They see him attempting to corner and corral the Republicans with the power of public opinion and the bully pulpit of the presidency. He is out to complete the social project of Roosevelt, and Johnson in their words.

US News says the speech commandeered the founding fathers for the liberal agenda as a shot across the bow of the ship of the Tea Party and the right.

I tend to think Obama has decided to let his freak flag fly in this term, determined not to be stymied by the right like he was in the last term he is coming out strong with where he stands and his agenda. It remains to be seen if he will be crippled like Clinton’s second term or if he will be able to out maneuver the Republicans and the big money lobbyists, or what is more likely he will make deals with industry like he did for health care reform, giving them advantages in exchange for their silence or support on climate change, immigration, and whatever else he decides to take on. He also has given the right some bones with his talk of budget deficit control, reform of medicare and social security. Gun control was not mentioned but it is the first issue he is tackling and will be a test to see if he has the power to push through reform like Johnson. For instance will he nix the Keystone pipeline or let it pass? The government has decided to wait until May, after the next budget debate, before coming up with its recommendations. The next few months will be interesting.

Netanyahu Victory, Iranian Underground Culture

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Exit poles in Israel show the new Knesset will have Likud 31, Yesh Atid (There is a future) 18 or 19, Labor 17, and Jewish Home 12, the new right wing party. That is a real change, with a new centrist party taking second place and Labor dropping to third and the new right wing party in fourth place. Two old parties and two new parties perhaps indicating a new direction in Israeli politics. One a television presenter, and another a former special forces commando. Netanyahu’s party has dropped from 42 to 31 seats in the Knesset but is still the number one party. The question is will he make a coalition with centrists and secularists or with the hard right and religious parties?

I have noticed that I have ‘friended’ a lot of people in Iran lately. They are mostly young, secular and into fashion and pop culture. Women looking like models, certainly not wearing burkas, chadors, or head scarves, perhaps this is private society, as a friend said who went there on a bike trip and was invited to parties at peoples homes that were anything but hard core conservative Islamic. Apparently fueled by contact with the Iranian diaspora, especially centered here in Los Angeles, the Tehran fashionistas and rockers are creating an underground where indoors and out of the sight of the governments agents, people let their hair down literally and party like its 1978, ie before the revolution forced a return to conservative so called Islamic values. Many of these young party people participated in the Green Revolution and are in their own ways maintaining resistance to the dominant culture. Civil society in Iran, especially among the middle class youth seems to be one of cultural resistance, an attempt to participate in the mainstream of world culture with an Iranian twist. It is not that they want to deny their own culture but that the want to break free from the artificial strictures created by the forced conservative Islamic version imposed by the Mullahs and the Revolutionary Guards.

Yet there are conservative, mostly rural elements in Iran, and probably groups that benefit from the current regime among the populace, Iranian red neck working classes, like the white working classes in the USA who support Republicans, a cultural conservatism that represents the other side of the cultural coin. Cultural conservatives of the more reactionary types seem to have a universal aversion to pop culture, cultural mixing and internationalism in general. Perhaps that explains the affinity between Ahmadinejad and the holocaust deniers in the West. Internationalism is seen as a Jewish plot… an old Nazi trope, transferred to the Great Satan, the USA which was originally a political force that dominated Iran by supporting the Shah and his repressive military apparatus. At the same time the liberalization of culture, the westernization of it if you will, offended conservative opinion among the religious elements in Iran and the political revolution of overthrowing the Shah became a cultural revolution of rejecting secular western fashion, especially those that liberated women from male control.

I am not Iranian, I am ethnically Polish, English and Texian, if there is such a thing, basically American. I have worked for Iranians here in Southern California and have Iranian friends. I have a history of interest in Iran, I organized one of the first protests against the Shah in New York when he came to the US in the fall of 1979. I had mixed feelings about the Green Revolution at the time, being somewhat convinced that the failure of the Iranian Revolution would lead to the Capitalist take over of Iran and the collapse of resistance in the Middle East. But with Al Qaeda as strong as it is, there is little to worry about a return to a secular Iran, with a popular democracy. Question is, how popular would a secular government be in Iran? The Green Revolution failed, it failed to mobilize the workers and reach out to the agriculturalists. Pop culture is not a revolution, it perhaps can provide an incentive to revolution, but noting like real political work on the ground will substitute.

Armed Struggle, Food COOPs And Cultural Revolution in Seventies America.

Sunday, January 20th, 2013

This is a bit of a ramble, I am attempting to tie together a few loose ends from the past. I was trying to discover if I remembered a group called Red Thumb in San Francisco and Minneapolis, but all I could come up with on the internet was Tribal Thumb, close enough, they were radical, probably Marxist and seemingly into the Armed Struggle sort of mentality that spin offs from the Weathermen branch of SDS were into. I was simply seeking to job my memory, as I was not in either town before 1980 and the events being described were for me at the time part of the recent radical history of the places I had moved to, San Francisco in early spring 1980 and Minneapolis mid summer 1981. Prior to that I had lived in Boulder, CO from 1975 until I left in the fall of 1979 for a stint with the Yippies in NYC and then on to San Francisco where I was promoting the Rock Against Racism organization that I had become part of in Boulder in winter of 1978-1979.

I had been involved with the coop movement in Boulder, working briefly at the Boulder Food COOP, living at the Ontological Society communal farm in Lafayette, CO where we grew organic vegies, raised turkeys and goats and had a collective landscaping business. I had friends doing Solar energy projects, and was involved in creating the incipient punk rock scene with my radio show on KGNU the local community radio station, putting on shows at the Free School and Tulagis on the Hill and generally involved with the local artsy radical community. But Boulder was not a heavy political town, by the mid to late seventies, the Marxists were mostly on campus and we, anarchists were mostly in town. The community was more New Age than anything with most of the more political types moving on after the Boulder Mall was instigated in the late seventies making radical alternatives in town to hard to maintain in the face of the real estate increases. We did have one left liberal book store, Left Hand Books, a project of NAM that I was able to stock an anarchist shelf for, but the radical institutions like the Carnival Cafe and the STP family had pretty been run out of town by the end of the seventies. Carnival Cafe was paved over as a parking lot in 1977. In 1971 Deputy Dawg, one of the STP family of street freaks was shot and killed execution style by the Marshall of Nederland, CO, a favorite hang out of the STPers. I knew one of them, I can’t remember his name, the guy worked as a dishwasher at the Carnival and I had a crush on his girlfriend, she was a cancer, that’s all I remember, he wore a black leather biker outfit that reeked in true STP style. Supposedly they originally came from New York where they were a younger offshoot of the Motherfuckers anarchist collective.

Minneapolis COOP Wars. Were a series of takeovers of local coops by members of the Marxist CO (Coop Organization) who wanted to push a harder political line in the coops and take them over forcibly from the more hippie oriented community. This was in 1975-1976, the effort failed and the community became more suspicious of the radical left, although my experience of Minneapolis was that I was in COOP heaven, with more Coops than anything in Colorado and more organized than in San Francisco at the time. I worked at the All COOP Assembly newspaper as their guinea pig advertising sales manager. It was a disaster, flaky new age promoters would advertise and then not want to pay. I got out of that and got a radio show at the new community station KFAI, where I played African and Caribbean discs that I found in a West Indian market. Little did I realize that the missionary colleges in town were full of Africans craving their music. I was swamped with requests and soon found myself searching the country for music for them. There was one label in Brooklyn, where I could order records from. As far as I know I was the first DJ outside of Brooklyn playing modern Afro-pop on the radio.

In the Bay area there was a COOP movement that was basically radical leftist in nature, partly an outgrowth of the Diggers scene in San Francisco an anarchist group that worked on the premise of word of mouth contact and ripping off the system to feed the growing numbers of hippies in the Panhandle near Haight Asbury in 1966-1967. Rainbow Grocery, the Peoples Warehouse and a group of affiliated coops sprang up in the seventies with groups like Tribal Thumb being some of the more hard core radicals affiliated with the Symbionese Liberation Army.

This is a statement published by the Tribal Thumb at the time of the Patty Hearst Trial reprinted in a blog by Paul Krassner that I have reproduced below.

“It has become known to the Tribal Thumb orbit that the CIA, FBI and CCS [Criminal Conspiracy Section] have made undercurrent moves to establish a basis for the total eradication of the Tribal Thumb Community . . [They] are involved in working overtime to unravel the mystery of Popeye Jackson’s execution in an effort to plant Tribal Thumb in a web of conspiracy in that execution . . .

The FBI’s heavy involvement in the case of Popeye’s death largely is due to the death of Sally Voye, who in actuality was moonlighting (outside her employment as a teacher) as a narcotics agent for police forces. Moreover, she was Popeye’s control agent. Popeye was an informer on the movement.

Several days ago, Patty Hearst was slipped out of her jail cell by the FBI and Mr. Randolph Hearst and taken to a nearby jail to identify a man being held there (we’re withholding his name for now) who was allegedly closely associated with Tribal Thumb, to make an identification of this man’s alleged trafficking of large quantities of arms to Tribal Thumb and the Symbionese Liberation Army. The result is that Miss Hearst pointed the comrade out as the trafficker of such weapons . . .

Donald DeFreeze escaped from the California prison system with help from the FBI and California prison officials. His mission was to establish an armed revolutionary organization, controlled by the FBI, specifically to either make contact with or undermine the surfacing and development of the August Seventh Guerrilla Movement.

We make note of the fact that the first communique issued by the SLA under the leadership of Donald DeFreeze was in part a duplicate of a communique issued by the ASGM. Further examination of those communiques establishes that the ASGM had surfaced and was in the process of developing some kind of operational format, when the SLA hastily moved, hard pressed for something spectacular to cut off this thrust by the ASGM. The result was the incorrect and unfounded death of (school superintendent) Marcus Foster.

It is evident that the FBI through its sources of information knew of the underground existence of the ASGM and that the movement was obviously making plans to become public knowledge via armed actions against the imperialist state. Having had their attempts to infiltrate agents into the ASGM’s mainstream frustrated, they sought the diverse method of establishing an organization they could control. So they made three approaches: Donald DeFreeze, who was in contact with Nancy Ling Perry, who worked at Rudy’s Fruit Stand, from whom Patty Hearst often bought bagels and fruit juice.

DeFreeze was let loose and given a safe plan to surface as an armed guerrilla unit. That plan was to kidnap Patty Hearst–strategized by the FBI, Randolph Hearst, Patty Hearst and Nancy Ling Perry. The format of that plan of kidnapping Patty Hearst was extracted from a book, published by a publishing company named Nova owned by the Hearst Corporation, entitled Vanished [Tribal Thumb may have meant Black Abductor, by Harrison James, pseudonym for James Rusk, Jr., published by Regency Press, not affiliated with Hearst].”

Ultimately the scene in the Bay Area became so polarized that there was a shoot out and killing of the founder of the Tribal Thumb.

“Shoot Out at the People’s Warehouse

The People’s Food System was not just a network of food stores. Its members saw it as an organization dedicated to radical social change, mostly agreeing on the importance of democratic procedure in running a collective organization. The People’s Food System also attracted people who were interested in using the System for their own ends. One such group was Tribal Thumb, a small collective of people who were connected to an eatery called Wellsprings Reunion, located in the South of Market area. The leader of the group, Earl Satcher, was a saxophone-playing ex-convict whom many people saw as the “cult” leader of the Wellsprings group. Tribal Thumb and a few allies in Veritable Vegetables were accused of intimidating members and trying to take over the People’s Food System. The dispute escalated into threats of violence and led to several secretly held meetings of the People’s Food System to discuss what actions should be taken. An emergency meeting was held on April 26, 1977 at the People’s Warehouse space. Called to discuss the expulsion of members deemed disruptive to the organization, the meeting degenerated into a hostile confrontation between opposing sides. Tribal Thumb members and their allies, (including two Dobermans), were in the parking lot, reportedly intimidating and threatening Food System representatives against voting for the expulsion of disruptive members. During the break, gunfire broke out in the parking lot, leaving ex-San Quentin 6 member Willie Tate critically wounded. Tribal Thumb leader Earl Satcher was shot dead. Although the shock of the gunfight soon wore off, the Food System began to succumb to larger changes.”

My own thoughts as I read through some of the literature collected in the Yippie house at Number Nine Bleecher Street in New York and at the Bound Together Book collective on Hayes Street in San Francisco I was impressed by the connection between the Anarchist Black Dragon Collective in Walla Walla State Prison in Washington State, and the Tribal Thumb and the CO group in Minneapolis. I did not know these people personally but I understood that in the very recent past, as I read in 1979-1980, that there had been a strong armed struggle group affiliated with the food coops in the west. Boulder seems to have been an island of hippie peace when I was there in the mid seventies, as the STPers mostly had been dispersed by then having moved to New Mexico and Texas by that time.

I was trying to figure out for myself if I wanted to move in the direction of armed struggle or stick to the cultural revolution line that I had found with the Rock Against Racism organization and the Yippies in New York. Previously in 1969 as a high schooler I had become part of the Anti-war movement hooked up with a local leftist group in Connecticut call AIM, American Independent Movement. They published an underground paper called “View From the Bottom” in New Haven. I called myself a Maoist at the time, but really I was a stoner who distributed Black Panther papers and our own High School underground “Glass Onion.” I sold pot, hash and acid for a little cash and was constantly harassed by the local cops who had impeccably bad timing in searching me, every time they did I was not holding. It was my usual modus operandi in high school to have my stash in my pockets as I hitched from one small Connecticut town to another.

This is one of the few references on the internet to my group the Mindless Thugs, in the summer of 1980 we were very active in San Francisco. Looks like we inspired Apio of Venomous Butterfly Publications, also known as Wolfi and other AKA’s in ways that I had never thought. We had a nice breakfast in Los Feliz one day and talked about our youths in religion, me in a Gnostic spiritual commune and he in a Baptist seminary.

“I originally made a version of this flyer (with different pictures) in 1981, the year after the so-called “mindless thugs” summer in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. That summer (1980) anonymous anarchists attacked the buildings of gentrifying businesses moving into the area. The local newspapers referred to the vandals as “mindless thugs” despite very clear statements of the reasons. Increasing police harassment in the area, not just of anarchists, but of the homeless, of non-assimilating, poor and working class queers and radical faeries and so on led to increasing tensions in the area that occasionally broke out into small riots. The Haight-Ashbury Merchants Association began to call for a truce, having the audacity to suggest that anarchists and others harrassed by pigs should “invite a cop to dinner”. This was my response and one of the very first flyers I ever made.”

This is one of the few places on line where I can find anything specific about AIM. We did support work for the Panthers when they were on trial in New Haven as well as for local labor and the anti war movement.

“Abramovitz moved to New Haven, Connecticut, where she became active in an existing organization and went on co-found other organizations. She became active in the American Independent Movement, an organization who summarizes their goal, “The American Independent Movement (AIM) has been working since 1966 to get people together against the rich, powerful few who run New Haven and the whole country”.[3] She’d also go on, while in New Haven, to co-found with other women, New Haven Women’s Liberation, an organization that allowed her to focus on welfare rights, organize anti-war rallies in Washington, D.C., and the unionization of Yale University clerical workers.”

Some sites on line with Rock Against Racism info. There were lots of groups, initially started in England, there were local versions across the USA. I was involved with the group in San Francisco, New York and Boulder. Interestingly the Detroit people came to San Francisco in the spring of 1980 and tried to take over the local group from Mary Malice and her friends, it didn’t work. Just like the Max’s Kansas City crew around Trowser Press who tried to turn it into a commercial enterprise in New York didn’t succeed thanks to yours truly and the New York Yippies.

Government Gives Dialysis Drug Makers Giveaway

Sunday, January 20th, 2013

According to the NYTimes Amgen the manufacturer of Sensipar will be able to continue setting the price for the drug given to dialysis patients who need it to control PTH and Calcium levels. Last year when I needed it the copay was $300 a month for patients on medicare. This is because the company can set the price and they set it high. It was beyond my means and I had to switch to another drug that didn’t work as well but had a reasonable copay of $20 a month, Calcitrol. Amgen had something like 74 lobbyists in Washington, DC and made sure that the senate committee considering the fiscal reforms excluded the drug from the bundled pricing that went into effect in 2011. This may be profitable for them, and some insurance plans may cover the cost, but my Kaiser Senior Advantage plan certainly did not. A drug like that insured that I would eat up my yearly allotment for Medicare prescription coverage by the end of April each year with me in the ‘donut hole’ for the rest of the year paying out of pocket. The government if it is going to allow companies to charge what they want, then needs to make sure that patients don’t suffer financially, they need to then make sure that the donut hole no longer exists which is supposed to be the case under Obama care. But ultimately it is decisions like this that help drive up the cost of medicare and make it such a burden on tax payers. A few million dollars spent by big Pharma lobbyists on Congress means billions of profits for the Pharmaceutical companies and higher medical costs for all of us and dialysis patients who are already at a disadvantage being discriminated against in the job market as I found out, are especially hard pressed when they have such large copays, making the drugs available only to those who can afford them, the rest of us having to get by on possibly less appropriate substitutes. This is no way to run a medical care system. Profits for investors and corporate officers should not be at the expense of the public welfare. Medical care should be a public service, like roads, bridges, police and fire services to name a few. Take the excessive profits out of the medical service industry and make it a public service and we will see much of the inflated cost of medical care in the USA disappear as it has in Europe where costs are much less.

I have been away from my computer for almost a week as it was in the shop for repairs and my cell phone keypad is simply inadequate for writing blog postings. I am back and just as feisty as before. Feeling stronger with my new kidney and more prepared to take on the world. I thank those of you who have been supportive over the last two to three years when I was on dialysis and in a situation where going to school was about all I could do, as nobody wanted to hire a guy who was hooked up to a machine every night, at least that is what I surmise from the lack of follow through with job offers after the multiple interviews I went to, although with the recession, those were not all that many to start with. Lets hope this year will bring better fortune. I am enrolled in classes for another semester, but I am probably going to have to get back to finding a job with my benefits expiring now that I am almost back to normal, or as normal as a man with a strangers kidney can be.

Jack Lew Washington Insider, Chuck Hagel Outsider

Sunday, January 13th, 2013

Jack Lew has been nominated by President Obama as the Treasury Secretary. He is being called a Washington Insider, Bill Moyers had Paul Krugman on discussing Jack Lew from the moderate left.Krugman was more interested in promoting his Keynesian view that the Government needs to prime the pump of the economy. A more radical view was that of William Black on Democracy Now who called Jack Lew a disaster for the economy. Robert Sheer wrote on Truthdig, reprinted in the Nation about Lew in disparaging terms also. Lew is a protege of Robert Rubin the Clinton Secretary of Treasury who promoted deregulation of Wall Street and set into motion much of the financial policy that was continued in the Bush administration with such disastrous results. “Like Tim Geithner, the new Treasury nominee may owe his views to Robert Rubin. So don’t expect him to pursue much in the way of bank reform.” From the National Journal.

“Bill Moyers asked Krugman about his argument that the recession could be solved in two years, and he answered, “That’s right, and that’s based on that’s not a number plucked out of thin air. That’s a guess at how long it would take to get a serious spending program going. We can actually make a lot of difference even quicker than that. Because the fact of the matter is far from having an effective job creation program, we’ve actually been holding back. We’ve seen state and local governments layoff hundreds of thousands of school teachers. We’ve seen public investment in basic stuff like road repair cut way back. If we just went back to normal rates of filling potholes and normal rates of employing the schoolteachers that could be done in months.” Quoted In Politicus USA.

Lew is a believer in protecting the social safety net and a deficit hawk. He understands the budget but is not exactly a financial whiz. He was OMB director under Clinton when the US had a budget surplus for the first time in recent memory. He is a close associate of President Obama and seems to be headed for nomination. Unfortunately what he represents is business as usual, a kowtowing to the interests of Wall Street and Corporate America and a needlessly delayed recovery of jobs in the USA.

Chuck Hagel is seen by the Israeli lobby as an enemy to be defeated for Secretary of Defense because of his statements as a Senator resisting the Israeli lobby. Hagel is thought to be opposed to a preemptive strike against Iran.

“In the bitter debate that led up to the American invasion of Iraq in 2003, Senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska said that some of his fellow Republicans, in their zest for war, lacked the perspective of veterans like him, who have “sat in jungles or foxholes and watched their friends get their heads blown off.” From NYT.

From the Jerusalem Post “Clips of his comments about the power of the Jewish lobby, the Palestinians being chained down, and the damage to the standing of the US due to excessive support of Israel.” Arab commentators seem to be amused at the thought of the Israeli Lobby having someone in Washington willing to stand up to their power. Pat Buchanan is endorsing Hagel, perhaps for those very reasons. The anti-Iranian and pro-Israel factions in Congress may make Hagel’s nomination tough for the President to get.

Caliphate Could Restore Stability To Middle East. Spying.

Friday, January 11th, 2013

I am having trouble getting into my blog again. I am wondering if there is another hacker form one of the governments going at my site again. It seems that I accumulate the interest of intelligence agencies around the world. Don’t want to seem self important, but I know CIA and Chinese intelligence have commented on my site, and I assume they monitor it.

Syria Al Qaeda related Syrian rebels “from the al-Qaida-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra and several other, mainly Islamist brigades have been fighting for weeks for control of the sprawling Taftanaz facility and broke into it on Wednesday evening.” (AP) They were able to do what the Free Syrian Army was not, capture the base. Al Jazeera and France 24 have covered this on their English Language broadcasts.

Related in Mali French troops have arrived and French jets participated in air strikes against northern rebels. This is not exactly what the UN mandate states, which calls for local African ground forces to participate with other forces are supposed to only aid logistically and financially. France as the Al Jazeera reporter commented was stretching the definition of logistical aid. “Western governments, particularly former colonial power France, had voiced alarm after the al Qaeda-linked rebel alliance captured Konna on Thursday, a gateway towards the capital, Bamako, 600 km south.” (Al Jazeera).

Yemen still is a hot bed of Al Qaeda. ABC news has this summary of Al Qaeda in Yemen, Mali, Somalia and Afghanistan. They don’t mention Syria or Iraq. There is an interesting article in Mining News of all places about Al Qaeda offering a reward for killing the US ambassador. The execution of a negotiator may be related to the recent drone strike by the US in Yemen, an eye for an eye sort of thing.–Al-Qaida-offers-bounty-for-US-ambassador-.html?isap=1&nav=5016

Iraq is in the midst of massive Sunni resistance. “Anti-government protests were held in Baghdad’s mostly-Sunni districts of Adhamiyah and Ghazaliyah, as well as the cities of Ramadi, Samarra, Mosul and Tikrit, AFP news agency journalists said.” as reported on Al Jazeera. Iranian News Agency FARS claims that Qatar is funding protests. “Iraq’s al-Nakhil news agency quoted a security official as saying that after the arrest of Issawi’s bodyguards, several groups affiliated to the regional states, specially Qatar, paid huge sums to their sympathizers in Anbar, Salaheddin and Nineveh provinces to stage rallies against the Iraqi government.”

“Victoria Nuland, State Department Spokesperson…any actions by any party to subvert the rule of law or provoke ethnic and sectarian tensions risks undermining the significant progress that Iraq has made towards peace and stability, and the important work that the U.S. and Iraq have been doing together.” From Eurasia Review.

Interesting to see Iran and the USA having convergent interests in Iraq, although for different reasons.

Egypt is calling for Jews who formerly lived in Egypt to come back and live in Egypt again. “In the midst of an unprecedented economic and political crisis, one of the leading figures of the Brotherhood saw fit to call on Egyptian Jews to come back.” From the Jerusalem Post. This is seen in Israel as a move against Israel, as the mullah claimed that Israel may not exist in ten years. From the Israeli view this is not a particularly welcome announcement. But it goes along with my own analysis that Israel was created as a colonial infusion of Europe in the Middle East and has served as an outpost of western interests ever since its creation. Turkey when it controlled this entire region ruled a multi-ethnic nation in the Ottoman Empire and Jews were a welcome component ever since the Europeans began the expulsions of Jews most notoriously from Spain in the 15th and 16th Centuries. Egypt and Greece in particular became favorite places for Jews. A return to that form of universal normalcy would be welcome and bring a greater stability to the Middle East. The lack of a hegemonic Middle Eastern State is an anomaly compared to the historical Caliphdom. This is ultimately what Al Qaeda claims it wants to do, restore the Caliphal state. This may not be a bad idea, It would mean absorbing the Jews and Christians back into a predominantly Islamic state, but that is what has existed for over close to fifteen hundred years.

” The Moslem Ottoman Empire would prove to be a haven for Jews fleeing from persecution in Christian Europe. Also, Mehmed worked to insure that a significant portion of the population of Istanbul (the new name for Constantinople) would be Jewish.” From CJN Connect.

“1693: Mehmed IV, the Ottoman Sultan passed away. During his reign, Moses Beberi was appointed ambassador to Sweden. After his death in 1674 his son Yehuda was appointed to the position ambassador. When the Jews of the Ukraine were looking for a place of refuge during the Cossack Uprising Mehmet IV, allowed them to settle on the banks of the Danube in Morea, Kavala, Istanbul and Salonica. The second event happens in 1666.” Also f–Al-Erian%E2%80%99s-Jewish-overture.aspx

And so it goes.

Gun Control, Freedom To Choose Live and Love.

Friday, January 11th, 2013

I have mixed feelings about gun control, the paranoid in me would like to be able to feel the cold steel of a full automatic machine gun and blow away all the pigs that keep America from becoming a fully functional communist democracy where private property is eliminated. On the other hand, the regular person in me says, wait a minute, guns don’t solve problems, they just kill people. You can’t converse as civilized human beings from behind the barrel of a gun. Power may come from the barrel of a gun as Mao says, but so do stupid shooting sprees and most power is in the hand of the state because the state is able to convince most morons that the state has the legitimate right to impose violence and you as an individual don’t. Personally I find guns to be simply too dangerous to be in the hands of emotion plagued humans. We have passions, we have rages, depression, and media that brainwashes, it is simply too much concentrated power in one hand that is simply to easy to use irrationally. Progressive social change can come simply by non-cooperation and agitation in most democratic states. Even in dictatorships, if people get fed up and the rebellious spirit reaches the security forces, then the power of the elites end up being impotent. Bit it means a serious unity of interest, on the part of the mass of the people. Look at Egypt, Soviet Union, the Eastern European dictatorships. But what about places like North Korea? Well they have done their best to arm themselves to the teeth to protect their version of the perfect family run dictatorship. But realistically that country would collapse in weeks if the Chinese didn’t find it convenient to maintain the North Koreans in power. More problematic are regimes like Iran where there are opposing interests, conservative rural and religious interests, versus the middle classes who are interested in emulating western culture and the ability to allow untrammeled capitalist exploitation. Both options are less than desirable, Syria is the crux of a certain conflict of values, pseudo-socialism masking ethnic loyalties and personal family-tribal interests versus Islamic fundamentalist internationalism versus western style liberal democratic cover for untrammeled capitalist exploitation. because all the options are mutually incompatible with each of them corrupting an ideal for the sake of keeping one group or another in positions of power by suppressing a large sector of the populace, violence is the natural recourse because logic would show the flaws in each of the systems and suggest that the alternative would be socialist democracy with equality for all or some variant that allowed for maximum individual freedom of expression without the contamination of concentration of power in the hands of one elite or another. There are natural areas of ability that all people have that should be encouraged as long as they are not imposing on the health and well being of others.

Ok I am rambling, I wanted to write about gun control and got into this rather obscure discussion of power and how to bring about change, whether armed struggle or non violence is more appropriate. I think that I have moved away from the armed struggle viewpoint to a more non-violent one, simply because as we become more and more complex and highly integrated technologically, the world becomes more vulnerable to nonviolent sabotage by non cooperation, hacking, and non cooperation. Technology seems to have made guns obsolete, social change has made cave man violent responses obsolete. Question is have we genetically changed enough so that the fight or flight hormonal response has been mitigated by the social adjustments made by earnest social engineers. Socialization versus biological determination. Which will win out in the USA is being played out now, as the gun control sociologists battle with the NRA biological determinist faction, the old nurture versus nature or perhaps spare the rod spoil the child, versus encouraging social values through example. I am running cliches now but they are nice bits of intellectual shorthand for very complex physiological ans psychological matters. But ultimately if we are free to determine our futures, then we should be able to choose a future without random gun violence by putting that mentality and the fear engendered by it in the dustbin of history.

  • famvir
  • hardi sprayer booms
  • moen danika 82833
  • death defying hoodoo gurus wiki
  • meds peds
  • astelin
  • i'm bringing the party to you gif tumblr
  • bontril
  • argo 6x6 top speed
  • superdrive macbook pro not working
  • epipen
  • wow privat pvp server instant 80 deutsch
  • macrobid
  • new screamo heavy metal bands
  • carbohydrate deficient transferrin normal range
  • hyzaar
  • kennedy group home kinston
  • important facts elizabeth van lew
  • haak austin video
  • d100 wifi router manual
  • why can you only take prevacid for 14 days
  • oreck sweeper parts
  • cod world war nocd
  • freecycle baltimore yahoo group
  • timolol
  • famciclovir
  • antivert
  • sure romance online apotheke
  • medroxyprogesterone
  • sony dsc-t99 charger
  • lamotrigine
  • tadalis
  • coller .001
  • poornam boorelu moong dal
  • rosuvastatin
  • tiffen dfx mac free
  • paddock publications inc company
  • azathioprine
  • happy wanderer vine lilac care
  • can i take ambien and benadryl
  • suncoast rv koa campground in lake park ga
  • educomp smart class
  • direccion comision estatal de derechos humanos xalapa
  • jokiel grzegorz marcin
  • lorna wikipedia singer
  • paranoid black sabbath video
  • slowdown football 2010
  • polycell mould killer
  • dail dinwiddie wikipedia
  • vial crimper tool
  • plaque stability atherosclerosis
  • you've attempted to upload a document but the feature
  • completion contract method tax
  • code of chivalry of european knights
  • leave the pieces lyrics youtube
  • minion mod yogbox
  • cabinet belletoile maisons-alfort
  • yoga pier malibu kiis fm
  • oracea
  • kaczmarek electric mtb
  • nebivolol
  • system abend 80a
  • prodigy omen song download
  • skin care products chemo patients
  • aldactone
  • anatomy ribs male female
  • nokia 5800 software download for pc
  • amlodipine effects
  • luana rodriguez suarez
  • what kind of choke for 00 buckshot
  • mapa aeropuerto cancun zona hotelera
  • castelli italiani famosi
  • b-cell chronic lymphocytic lymphoma
  • ntsb safety recalls
  • blunauta roma villa paganini
  • sarge's heroes n64 rom
  • mertz 9716
  • uroxatral
  • coverall buildings
  • animales sin hogar foro
  • pages blanches canada sherbrooke
  • damn regret lyrics meaning
  • disable hotkeys autohotkey
  • incisional biopsy vs excisional biopsy
  • used auto parts rockford il
  • provincia di enna
  • momo wang violin
  • escentric molecule perfume
  • ponder gondho
  • cheatham palermo & garrett
  • paroxetine hcl oral suspension
  • lorelei hammond ukiah ca
  • acadian lines antigonish
  • diablo iii characters wiki
  • amoxil
  • gnomish army knife mop
  • max prilosec dose
  • homogeneous vs differentiated oligopoly
  • husqvarna sewing embroidery designs
  • 2000 diesel pajero for sale
  • neoral
  • air canada aircraft a319 seating
  • route demonstration saturday 26th march
  • celadon pokemon fire red
  • sony dsc-s40 white screen
  • 10 worst serial killers usa
  • bahama momma drink recipes
  • evernote plugin safari lion
  • paroxetine qt prolongation
  • dhc-6-300 wiki
  • universidades particulares ciudad xalapa
  • best buy honeywell air purifier
  • knotted plow line
  • dragonball z tenchi budokai 3
  • libreria arquitectura santiago chile
  • .avi codec for kmplayer download
  • when do babies lose their gag reflex
  • posturepedic foam mattress reviews
  • 2-56 countersink
  • darmowe gry dla dzieci dora poznaje swiat
  • shift-jis art generator
  • antabuse
  • crofton skating rinks maryland
  • st anthony padua cyo basketball
  • ssbb subspace emissary 100 walkthrough
  • fcr breakpoints diablo 2 sorc
  • movies does amanda bynes play
  • ingmar relling siesta
  • abacavir
  • que es hydroxyzine pam
  • what is this thing in the jewish doorway
  • generic paxil price
  • tribble testing rewards
  • flora llanos orientales venezuela
  • birte quitt xing