30: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Thirty

 

babies1

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

Contribution is what everyone wants at the bottom of things, since that guarantees both the fundamental needs of power and happiness and the ephemeral desires of love, respect, money and so forth: thus, the primary evil of monopoly finance capital is that it utterly prohibits people’s participating and figuring out how to give back and all of that.

jim-hickey-alicia-araya-cosmic pipeline1

This final chapter actually began with close to twelve hours of wakeful output when sleep normally intercedes.  What we’d normally imagine as a day only started as dusk was creeping up on the horizon.  Jimbo extracted himself around five from bed, a six hour nap, whereas Alicia was only up a little before six thirty.

Fourteen chapters in a few hours unfold without incident.  Blood at one end of the month leads to blood at the other end.  Perhaps, in the vein of the blue moon, this is a blue-blood transit.

Here’s a note to Ms. Sandra, whose new screenplay project is a ‘sex-addiction’ schtick, which, given her recent receipt of LuLu, is interesting indeed.

 

What fun!

Before I press ‘send,’ I’ll do as you say.  Let’s start thinking about how to network such minimal but useful mutual support.  I gave this five stars and ‘followed.’  Let me know if anything else would be useful.

New York was as always incredible.  The NWU meeting was perhaps not quite so awesome but incredibly interesting; I’ll be sending out a note to the Chapter soon.

I’ll send your announcement on both the Daily Links and my upcoming Contributria outreach.  Let’s keep talking.

Thanks so much, Solidarity Forever, &

Ciao for now,
Jimbo

Here’s the comment that I tried to leave, though I’m not sure that my attempt worked.  Ah well.

“If sex addiction exists, then food addiction does too.  What about ‘air addiction’ or sleep addiction?

Keeping such thoughts in mind while scripting will help deliver a socially useful screenplay.  That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.”

Here’s an interesting thought about the passive voice, which soon enough should publish.  Contributoria is some high-concept shit.

 

What Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. called “studied ambiguity” might serve the purposes of legislative drafters seeking to avoid specificity that could fracture a fragile majority coalition. Studied ambiguity might also serve the purposes of a lawyer whose client seeks to feel out the other parties early in a negotiation.

 

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29: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Nine

 

Costa Rican Frog

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

The inevitability of reification in writing, of making supposedly real occurrence from words that symbolize speech that symbolizes thoughts and feelings yet consists of breath and friction, can cause doubt of such intensity that the path of the recluse begins to look really dandy: after all, if the best result possible is just more bullshit, why exactly are we bothering?

Crossing fingers over deadlines, keeping Jimbo’s eyes on the road and focus on the work, here we go.  ‘Today’ begins between ten and eleven on Saturday, and in the typical way of conceptualizing a day—from rising to bedding down again—ends after eleven A.M. Sunday. 

In between, lusty loving happens.  Completion of the Grammar Nerd occurs.  And, though the possibility at times seemed touch and go, with Alicia’s desire for a warm bed almost insuperable, Victor Jara goes to bed, so to speak, before we do.

 

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28: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Eight

 

Photograph by Rama, Wikimedia Commons

Photograph by Rama, Wikimedia Commons

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

Practically always, the fetishistic focus on figuring out the exact nature of any particular conspiracy guarantees that one will never figure out what regular people like us should do; on the contrary, insisting that some plot and its uncovering is the source of all that is real promises those in charge that we will always avoid coming up with our own agendas.

After finally falling into the depths of Morpheus’ realm, Jimbo extracts himself to continue scribbling away.  He and Alicia hang at the Haydens in order to talk with Uncle Jumper, who as things turn out was a backer of Pinocet till he watched a torture session and responded to a commie beauty’s come-on to become a double-agent do-jour. 

His jumping the wall came when something or other—his lovely’s capture and disappearance, since her spilling all beans to end the pain was a given—blew his cover.  Thus, the family’s connection with Europe grew out of a Pinochet traitor’s needing a quick getaway.

Back home, the work is so intense that, despite insane cold, we keep going without even thinking about lighting fires.  The goal is in sight.

JAmusicpanel2

 

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27: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Seven

 

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

Fracturing consciousness will always prevail, since every life starts with a fracturing of infant from mother, and every turn that matters in life emanates from, metaphorically or literally, other sunderings of one sort or another.

Thanksgiving at Black Mountain delights, and sleep comes early to Jimbo and his sweet one.  What is more, Victor Jara continues to develop, nor does the return to Madison County come to pass.

In fact, naughy play in the new kitty’s presence is sweet indeed, at five thirty Thanksgiving morning.  Spewing and fueling who knows what mellowing of consciousness and more, preparing further contextualization of the entire Chilean background and more. 

Palbo Neruda’s story just boggles the mind.  The different family members really connect some dots for us too. 

Another brief here.  More to come.

 

 

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26: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Six

 media papers hor

 

Well, hell.  Something is coming of the Chilean piece, come what may.  More to the point of what our job is, we seem to have a context for completion, come what may. 

Alicia’s boosting our calling James rescued my fucking chestnuts—which we don’t manage to buy at Greenlife tonight, by the way.  He comes over, thunks a time or two on the pipe, and ‘Bob’s your Uncle!’  The next thing we know, he’s taken it off and filled a couple of buckets with black slime, and the stove will draw a cigarette or a fire either one. 

Our little snit about Danielle’s ideation—with her mother’s admission that Ms. D. is the issue of her ‘father’s’ son and all that implies—is psychological gold, were we looking for a film.  We eat hotdogs in Black Mountain, and Jimbo is up till five posting a second Victor Jara Draft and more.

A note to Tikkun follows.  “Hey there!

 

I’ve written something that raises important points that are non-existent, or close to that, in dialogs like this.  If I’m correct that these ideas are crucial, then the agenda for such gatherings as this need to provide a specific and clear place on the agenda for a discussion of these matters.

 

Here’s a link: https://www.contributoria.com/issue/2014-11/5407d583296471cc7a000035.  I’d be happy to make a presentation.

 

However, whatever the case may be in that regard, approaching electoral politics without a comprehension of the actual history and political economy of this sphere of life will lead nowhere that we want to go, except by blind good luck.  Metaphors and ‘strategies’ to advance those metaphors, or the so-called ‘Democrats’ who supposedly embody those metaphors, will prove fruitless in moving the lives of people forward.”

Arturo Araya Peeters – Wikipedia, la enciclopedia libre

El Capitán de Navío Arturo Araya Peeters (m. 27 de julio de 1973) fue un marino chileno, edecán del presidente de Chile Salvador Allende. Asesinado a balazos el 27 de julio de 1973 por miembros del grupo de extrema derecha “Patria y Libertad”.

 

A Thought for the Day

Inasmuch as knowledge matters, then access to literacy and information and the tools to process, analyze, and understand the available data are central to attaining any awareness that is both useful and powerful, as opposed to beliefs—which all too often pass as knowledge but barely qualify as propaganda, since they are so clearly fatuous and false—that merely act as ideological propositions that serve rulers’ agendas and schemes but have nothing positive to add to community or grassroots empowerment or progress.
Quote of the Day

That’s not it.  That’s not it at all.  You always have a tendency to add.  But one must be able to subtract too.  It’s not enough to integrate, you must also disintegrate.  That’s the way life is.  That’s philosophy.  That’s science.  That’s progress, civilization.”  The character, The Professor, in the play, The Lesson, by Eugene Ionesco: http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Eug%C3%A8ne_Ionesco.

 

This Day in History

In India, today is Constitution Day; four hundred seven years prior to this day, the male infant who would grow up to preach and found Harvard University took his first breath; James Cook two hundred thirty-six years back became the first European visitor to the Island of Maui in the Hawaiian archipelago; Notre Dame started operation as a Catholic University one hundred and seventy-two years before this day; one hundred fifty-one years ago, President Lincoln declared the final Thursday in November as a national day of thanksgiving, echoing George Washington’s and Congress’ pronouncements on the same day seventy-four years before, in 1789; just two years hence in 1865, 5,000 miles to the South, Chilean naval operatives used duplicity and expert gunnery to disable and capture a Spanish vessel, effectively establishing the Andean nation’s control of its coasts against Spain; Sojourner Truth drew her last breath a hundred thirty-one years ago, aged eighty six years; a baby boy was born a century and five years back, who destiny tapped as the absurdist dramatist Eugene Ionesco; three years afterward, across the Atlantic, another baby boy came into the world, who would grow up to become acclaimed journalist Eric Sevareid; ninety-two years back, two Englishmen entered King Tut’s tomb, the first human presence there in three millennia, and the first widely released movie to use Technicolor came on the market, and the baby boy was born who grew up as Charles Schulz, the creator of the comic strip, Peanuts; seventy-two years before the here-and-now, partisan anti-fascists held the first Yugoslav-wide meeting in Bosnia to organize operations against Nazi Germany; sixty-five years prior to the present pass, India’s legislature approved the Constitution that prevails to this day; a year later, as U.S. forces approached the Korean border with China, Chinese troops launched a massive counterattack on the American and U.N. forces that put to rest notions of a quick ‘free-world’ victory; twenty-eight years ago, Ronald Reagan, following his Attorney General’s admissions the day before, made the announcement that authorized the formation of a commission to investigate the Iran Contra scandal; Florida’s Secretary of State fourteen years back presented the final results of the 2000 election, certifying George W. Bush as the Presidential victor; five years later, iconic children’s book author Stan Berenstain died; three years back, a North Atlantic Treaty Organization strike force killed twenty-odd Pakistani’s at a border checkpoint that the NATO combatants had attacked by mistake.

 

SEARCH OF THE DAY
beliefs OR opinions OR faith versus OR contradistinction OR juxtaposition knowledge OR understanding OR awareness “human consciousness” evolution dialectic OR polarity analysis = 302,000 Results.

TOP OF THE FOLD

7A

CONCEPTUALIZING RACE, OPPOSING RACISM

http://www.racismreview.com/blog/2014/11/17/research-brief-race-perception-reality/    A set of curated briefs of recent publications and investigations into matters of color and bigotry and social equality and more: “I attended the #FacingRace14 conference and I’m still processing that experience, but one of the most interesting breakout sessions I attended was about research on language, perceptions and ‘racial anxiety.’  So, I’m using that as a jumping off point to share some related research in today’s research brief.   As always, I note which pieces are freely available on the web, or “open access” with (OA), and those behind a paywall with (locked).”

RECENT BLOG-POSTS

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NWU NATIONAL & AT-LARGE ANNOUNCEMENTS

JAmusicpanel2

JOB & GRANT PROSPECTS, UPCOMING EVENTS & CONTESTS

NIEMAN FELLOWSHIP PENDING

http://www.niemanlab.org/2014/11/its-time-to-apply-for-a-nieman-fellowship/    The announcement from the Nieman Journalism Lab about upcoming deadlines–January 15 for U.S. Citizens–for the Nieman Journalism Fellowship and other opportunities: “They have in common a passion for journalism and have brought to Harvard an exciting set of questions they are exploring individually and as a class. And, yes, a mere three months into their work, some have already declared it the best year of their lives. We now start the process that will lead us to next year’s class of fellows.”

WORDPRESS‘ LONGFORM WRITING 201

http://en.blog.wordpress.com/2014/11/21/writing-201-longform/     A course from WordPress that might appeal to at least a few scrappy scribes: “Writing 201: Beyond the Blog Post is a four-week course to help those beginning to explore longform writing (or who are frustrated with their past attempts).  Each week, we’ll focus on a different kind of piece, working our way from interviews — one of the easiest ways to get started with longer pieces — through instructional pieces and opinion pieces, ending with a personal essay.  It’s the product of a range of writers and editors, including the founders and editors at Longreads – folks who know a thing or two about high word counts.”

ORGANIZATIONAL LINKS & NETWORKING

UNION MERGER OF NOTE

http://rabble.ca/news/2014/11/telecommunication-union-to-merge-steelworkers   In a significant development North of the border, Canada’s Telecommunication Union’s lopsided majority decision to merge with the United Steelworkers, as reported in Rabble.Ca’s weekly labor newsletter, offering a glimpse at a model that might make sense in many contexts of the current moment: “In the face of declining union density, legislative attacks on labour, and increasing financial pressures, union mergers have become a popular tactic for union rejuvenation in the Canadian labour movement, the argument being that there is strength in numbers — and pooled resources.  Last year two of Canada’s largest private sector unions, the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada (CEP), entered into an historic merger forming Unifor, now Canada’s largest private sector union.  This will become the USW’s 19th merger in recent years, but ‘its not just about numbers,’ said Steelworker’s President Ken Neumann.  ‘For each and every time that we’ve had a merger I can honestly and truly say that we become a better organization for the numbers coming in and the numbers that we represent, and I truly believe that there’s nothing about this merger(that isn’t dandy).  They’re basically in many places where we are and that will help us mobilize even further in those communities.'”

WRITERS’ ISSUES & EVENTS & TOOLS

PLAGIARISM’S PROBLEMATIC PRACTICE

http://www.cjr.org/behind_the_news/journalism_has_a_plagiarism_pr.php     An examination from Columbia Journalism Review that conceives of journalism’s issue with plagiarism as a combination of vague definition and very uneven application of rules and punishments and such: “A University of Maryland study found similar ambiguity in 76 newspaper plagiarism cases between 1997 and 2006.  Forty-three of those offenders — 56 percent — lost their jobs, with the rate of punishment steadily increasing from minor to major to repeated infractions.  Perhaps more interestingly, the papers’ word choice in publicly responding to those crimes largely correlated with their eventual sanctions — ‘plagiarism’ typically garnered termination while synonymously described offenses earned lesser punishments.”

GENERAL MEDIA & ‘INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY’ ISSUES

HUNGER GAMES TYPOLOGIES

http://magazine.good.is/articles/hunger-games-theory?utm_source=thedailygood&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=dailygood     An assessment from Good Magazine of the cultural phenomenon of Hunger Games, arguably an important aspect of present mediation for scrappy scribes, all of which begins with a comparison to Stravinsky’s controversial Rite of Spring: “(P)erhaps … the ballet’s depiction of… ritualistic pagan sacrifice … caused the real unease, especially given the political climate in France and beyond during the slow, scary buildup to the first World War.  Younger attendees, anxious over looming world affairs, may have found themselves a bit too sympathetic to the plight of the young girl being slaughtered—by tribal leaders hoping to appease vaguely explained forces and maintain the status quo.   The Hunger Games, that wildly popular young adult book and film series depicting a futuristic dystopia where a totalitarian power structure televises its brutality of young ‘tributes’ supposedly chosen by chance as a means of preventing any uprisings, features a lead heroine in a similarly sympathetic position.”

RECENT HAPPENINGS

ABOUT TO HIT THE FAN IN FERGUSON

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2014/nov/23/police-commander-lohr-protests-arrests-ferguson?CMP=ema_565       A deeply reported update from Ferguson that came out just as the Grand Jury was about to issue its decision not to indict Michael Brown’s killer, in the run-up to which most police forces have become more militaristic and aggressive while the officer with whom Guardian’s reporter is speaking has a more community-oriented and civil libertarian view: “The chats proceeded amid loud chanting and drumming from a crowd fearful that the grand jury, whose decision is expected in the coming days, will decline to charge Wilson, 28, with crimes such as murder or manslaughter.  The jurors, who have been meeting weekly for three months, are due to reconvene on Monday.  Despite the decision of Lohr and several other officers to remain in regular dress, as the protest grew a group of officers from the county and the Missouri state highway patrol emerged in riot gear.  Dozens of demonstrators had spent hours marching through Ferguson in the rain.  Some shouted abuse at the line of armoured officers.  Agreeing that African Americans experienced systematic disadvantages in the US justice system, Lohr warned: ‘I’m not a sociologist, I’m not a psychologist, that wasn’t what I went to college for.’  In fact, Lohr, 41, earned a degree in economics from Vanderbilt University.”

GENERAL PAST & PRESENT ISSUES & DEVELOPMENTS

A SCIENCE OF EQUALITY

http://perception.org/app/uploads/2014/11/Science-of-Equality-111214_web.pdf      A research monograph about race that seeks to develop a ‘science of equality’ with which those who’ve committed themselves to social justice can develop tools and approaches to forestall further violence and social devolution that stem from bigotry and supremacist thinking: “Last year, we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, honoring the historic struggles for racial equity and justice waged during the Civil Rights Movement.  And yet in the last few years, we have seen far too many killings of unarmed black young people rise to the level of national public consciousness, some within the span of just a few months.  With each death, we’ve committed a new name to memory: Jonathan Crawford III in Ohio; Eric Garner in New York; Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; Renisha McBride in Michigan; Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis in Florida; and Jonathan Ferrell in North Carolina.  And the list is growing.  With each new name, we’ve learned their unique personal histories and debated different accounts of what might have happened in each instance.  Mostly, we have mourned the eerily familiar similarity in each of their tragic deaths.”

 

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25: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Five

 

Costa Rican FrogGoodness knows, the words keep coming.  The aches and pains are also prevalent, unfortunately, to the extent that Jimbo wonders if he’ll live much longer, though he certainly enjoys creating ideas and loving his love, who is the marvelous manifestation of the magically real and hotly sweet all at once.

Dreams of negotiated settlements about just about everything in life typified the night’s inner life.  One eventuality in particular was weird.  Jimbo was, as would usually happen with all but true professionals, winning a version of Scrabble that he was playing.  Then, a rule shift occurred that permitted the playing of a tile on an entire move that multiplied the score of each letter, as well as of the entire amount, so that a single stroke might net hundreds or even a thousand points or more..

We’ve opened ourselves to “Hunger Games” mythos.  The process entails sucking down twenty minutes of advertising vomitus generally, and then opening the eyeballs to the worst sort of mediated pukosity.  This so discomfits Alicia that she almost elicits a nine-eleven call from the usher and management, since she snuck her ass to watch a little of the Simpsons or something till the actual film began in our sphere.

Her job was to watch the ads, damn it!  Jimbo bought more Latin books.  Thanksgiving is coming.  The stove still sucks.  The pump is wheezing.  Who knows?

 

 

A Thought for the Day

Both the point and the pardox of consciousness will forever and always remain the ever untenable and generally thankless task of seeking to fill wisdom’s cup to the very brim.
Quote of the Day

“Well-informed men know that the great controlling interests have secured most of the other sources and engines of Power.  They own or control most of the newspapers, most of the magazines, most of the pulpits, all of the politicians, and most of the public men.  We are asked to believe that the do not own or control the Associated Press, by far the most desirable and potent of these engines.  We are asked to believe that the character and wording of the dispatches upon which depends so much public opinion is never influenced in behalf of the controlling interests.  We are asked to believe that Interests that have absorbed all other such agencies for their benefit have overlooked this, the most useful and valuable of all.  We are even asked to believe that, although the Associated Press is a mutual concern, owned by the newspapers, and although these newspapers that own it are in turn owned by the Controlling Interests, the Controlling Interests do not own, control, or influence the Associated Press, which goes its immaculate way, furnishing impartial and unbiased news to the partial and biased journals that own it.  That is to say that when you buy a house you do not buy its foundations.”  Charles Edward Russell, Pearson’s Magazine, as quoted in Upton Sinclair’s journalistic expose, The Brass Check: http://www.is.wayne.edu/MNISSANI/RevolutionarysToolkit/BrassCheck.pdf

Pensive ParakeetThis Day in History

Today is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women; a Christian leader, and leper, eight hundred thirty-seven years ago, joined Alsatian knights to defend Christian control of Jerusalem, which succeeded in slaughtering a much larger Muslim army; five hundred twenty-three years before the present, the siege of the final Islamic stronghold on the Iberian Peninsula, at Grenada, began; two hundred fifty-six years back, British troops captured Fort Duquesne, which formed the basis for the establishment of Fort Pitt, and later Pittsburgh; two hundred nineteen years ago, the partition of Poland proceeded to such a point that the last independent King of Poland abdicated and accepted exile in Russia; a baby girl came into the world a hundred sixty-eight years ago, destined to grow up as prohibitionist and general hell-raiser Carrie Nation; a century and a half back, Confederate agents started a score or more of fires in an attempt to set New York City ablaze and put the town to the torch; a decade later, after the panic of 1873 had caused profound dislocation in rural and agricultural areas, the Greenback Party formed in 1874, offering a program of fiat money to dispossessed and struggling farmers and small business people; two years further on, the U.S. Cavalry, to avenge the massacre at Little Big Horn, undertook a predawn attack on a Cheyenne village near the source of the Powder River, razing the community and killing most of its inhabitants, largely women and children; ninety-nine years before the here and now, Albert Einstein presented his field calculations in support of the General Theory of Relativity at the Prussian Academy of Sciences; Japan and Germany seventy-eight years ago signed a pact to aid the other in the event of any attack on either nation by the Soviet Union; Bosnia and Hezegovina seventy-one years ago initiated a drive for Statehood based on their opposition to fascist Germany; four years subsequently, in 1947, the blacklisting started of the so-called “Hollywood Ten” for its affiliations with communists and so forth, and, half a world away, New Zealand became an independent country in the British Commonwealth of Nations; five years hence, in 1952, Agatha Christy’s play, The Mousetrap opened, eventually to become the longest continuously presented play in history; fifty-four years back, three sisters who were organizing against Dominican Republic Strongman Trujillo died from assassins’ bullets, their martyrdom the basis thirty-nine years later, in 1999, for the establishment of an international commemoration against violence against women, and at the same time the baby boy of the man who was about to become President was born, as John Kennedy, Jr. growing to prominence as a journalist and publisher; forty-six years ago, the prolific socialist author and social justice advocate and journalist Upton Sinclair breathed his last; a Japanese author, Yukio Mishima, and a compatriot killed themselves two years later, in 1970, in a ritual suicide after their attempt to overthrow their country’s government failed; twenty-eight years prior to the present pass, Attorney General Edwin Meese announced that profits from selling illegal weapons to Iran had funded the provision of illegal aid to so-called Contra rebels who were terrorist opponents of Nicaragua’s legitimate government; Czechoslovakia six years later, in 1992, split into two States, Slovakia and the Czech Republic;

 

book hor2

SEARCH OF THE DAY
“shield law” OR “shield laws” necessity OR “sine qua non” journalism OR reporting knowledge democracy history analysis = 30,200 Hits.

TOP OF THE FOLD

REVIEWING RISEN’S PAY ANY PRICE

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/11/19/rise-n19.html    A review essay from World Socialist Website of James Risen’s new volume about the thuggish corruption and profiteering that predominate in politics now, along with an examination of the writer’s role in opposing that, arguably an absolute necessity for any context that is democratic to continue: “To make an example of those who dare to expose government crimes, the Obama administration has subpoenaed Risen and is threatening to imprison him.  In a case set to go to court in January, the government is seeking to force Risen to turn over confidential source material as part of an Espionage Act prosecution of CIA leaker Jeffrey Sterling.  Risen has said he will accept a multi-year jail term rather then hand over First Amendment-protected material to the government.  At the conclusion of his book, Risen writes: ‘Pay Any Price is my answer to how best to challenge the government’s draconian efforts to crack down on aggressive investigative reporting and suppress the truth in the name of ceaseless war.  My answer is to keep writing, because I believe that if journalists ever stop uncovering abuses of power, and ever stop publishing stories about those abuses, we will lose our democracy.’  Pay Any Price focuses on the connection between government crimes and a parasitic corporate-financial layer that has amassed huge sums of money by facilitating them.  Risen refers to the ‘war on terror’ as a ‘bipartisan enterprise’ and argues that it is driven largely by war profiteers.”

RECENT BLOG-POSTS

 

NWU NATIONAL & AT-LARGE ANNOUNCEMENTS

JOB & GRANT PROSPECTS, UPCOMING EVENTS & CONTESTS

A CHANCE TO WORK FOR NIEMAN LAB

http://www.niemanlab.org/2014/11/come-work-for-nieman-lab-5/    A job-opening in Boston, at Harvard’s Nieman Journalism Lab, a plum for the right scribe: “This job will join our little Harvard newsroom (currently made up of three reporters and me) to report on journalism innovation — innovation in how news gets reported, produced, distributed, discovered, consumed, and paid for — with a particular focus on how mobile is changing the news.  If you enjoy the sort of stories you read here and would like a chance to report, write (and maybe edit) them full time, you might be a good candidate.”

SOUTH CAROLINA ARTS GRANTS

http://www.southcarolinaarts.com/grants/artists/artistsventures.shtml?utm_source=AVI+Letters+of+Intent+deadline&utm_campaign=AVI+targeted+email+Nov+2014&utm_medium=email    Grants for Palmetto State producers of culture, with letters of intent due December 15: “To encourage and enable the creation of new artist-driven, arts-based business ventures that will provide career satisfaction and sustainability for South Carolina artists.  South Carolina artists (individuals and collaboratives) may apply for up to $5,000 in order to launch a new venture or significantly alter an existing venture.”

CURATORIAL OPENINGS

http://nationswell.com/job-opportunities-join-the-team/    An opportunity to participate as an employee with a site that provides curation services: “NationSwell seeks editorial curators to aggregate stories.  All candidates must have strong research skills, an eye for the newsworthy, strong knowledge of social media, and the ability to work quickly while paying close attention to details.  We are looking for curators who can comb the web and write at least 3 snappy posts a day for our audience of service-minded millennials.  Each post should share a news item that doesn’t get enough attention in the media and fits our mission of finding and showcase innovators and innovations that are moving America forward.  Candidates should be self-motivated to pitch, write, and aggregate the kinds of stories they would want to share with their friends.”

ORGANIZATIONAL LINKS & NETWORKING

POWERS BEHIND THE SCENES

http://edge.org/conversation/eminence_grise       A story of a super-agent–clients who include Stephen Pinker and Jared Diamond bear mention–and his views on life, science, publication, communication, and more: “‘The great questions of the world concern scientific news,’ says Brockman.  ‘We are at the beginning of a revolution.  And what we hear from the mainstream is: ‘Please make it go away.’


And there you are—this is how it goes with John Brockman who doesn’t like to waste time in the midst of the contradictions of the present.  ‘Come, let’s start,’ he says in a good mood and puts a recording device on his desk.  ‘I’m turning it on, you don’t mind?  He is charming, without hiding his own interests.  He is proud of his life, his intelligence, without that he would have to apologize for it.   He is a key figure of the late 20th and early 21st century, the éminence grise and major source of inspiration for the globally dominant culture, which he himself named as the ‘third culture.’  It is not Brockman, but his authors, who are well-known: Richard Dawkins, Steven Pinker, Daniel C. Dennett, Jared Diamond, Daniel Kahneman.  Physicists, neuroscientists, geneticists, evolutionary biologists, fixed stars of the science age, superstars of nonfiction bestseller lists, the reason for Brockman’s financial success and good mood. …’I’ve been their agent for decades.  It’s a wonderful life: I’m doing what I love to do, I read smart books and get well-paid for it.'”

WRITERS’ ISSUES & EVENTS & TOOLS

COPYRIGHT HISTORY VIA TOLKIEN

http://blogs.loc.gov/law/2014/11/j-r-r-tolkien-paperbacks-and-copyright/    Another gem from Library of Congress that, by telling of a youngster’s love of Tolkien, illustrates much that ought to be mandatory for scrappy scribes to learn about the historical background of copyright legislation and practice: “The tale of copyright law in the 1950s is a tangled one and illustrates some of the complexities in the U.S. copyright system.  Some of the issues in play for determining the copyright status of The Lord of the Rings in 1965, would involve a review of the U.S. 1891 copyright law (26 Stat. 1106) and a subsequent Presidential Proclamation which extended copyright benefits to citizens of certain nations; the 1909 U.S. copyright law (35 Stat. 1075); and a consideration as to who had manufactured copies of the works in the United States; and the possible effect of the Universal Copyright Convention on the 1909 U.S. copyright law.”

cardboard1GENERAL MEDIA & ‘INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY’ ISSUES

CHECKING LINKS

http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/4-quick-sites-that-let-you-check-if-links-are-safe/    A portal to a few handy tools, nothing fancy, but apparently bona fide link-safety software that scrappy scribes might find useful.

RECENT HAPPENINGS

TEXAS ABOUT TO MURDER ANOTHER INNOCENT MAN

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/11/17/is-texas-getting-ready-kill-innocent-man/    From the folks at First Look, a posting about the upcoming execution of a man who is probably innocent of the crime for which he may very well die, a blithe acceptance of State-sanctioned homicide that indicts the ‘criminal justice’ system of much of this country as an oxymoronic exercise is bigotry and terror: “Eleven years before he raped and threatened to kill Lear, Fennell’s own fiancee, 19-year-old Stacy Stites, was found brutally murdered along a country road in Bastrop, Texas.  That crime eventually sent a man to death row.  His name is Rodney Reed—and he is scheduled to die in January.  Lear, like many people who have followed the case in Texas —believe that Reed is innocent.  And they believe that the real killer is Jimmy Fennell.  Connie Lear is not alone in coming forward now that an execution date has been set.  Nearly a dozen people related to Stites, many of whom have had doubts about the case for years, are breaking their own silence, calling for Reed’s life to be spared.  One is Stites’ cousin, Judy Mitchell, who is convinced Fennell is the real killer.  ‘I just know he did [it],’ she told The Intercept.  ‘We’ve got to do something to stop this execution.'”

GENERAL PAST & PRESENT ISSUES & DEVELOPMENTS

MONEY, HISTORY, & THE ISLAMIC STATE

http://qz.com/296849/what-the-islamic-states-currency-tells-us-about-the-bloody-origins-of-money/    A just fascinating article from Quartz that, though its brevity makes for a certain surface sheen that one wants deepened, examines the context of the Islamic State in Iraq & Syria’s recently announced plans to issue a currency: “The Islamic dinar appeared in 696 A.D., when the Arab world was at peak imperial strength.  The Umayyad empire—based in Damascus—stretched from the Iberian peninsula to the Indus river in south Asia.  That swath of territory was the culmination of decades of warfare, which consolidated not only political power but also vast stores of loot.  In his magisterial work Debt: The First 5,000 Years, monetary anthropologist David Graeber wrote: ‘Over the course of the wars of expansion, for example, enormous quantities of gold and silver were indeed looted from palaces, temples and monasteries and stamped into coinage, allowing the Caliphate to produce gold dinars and silver dirhams of remarkable purity.’  The Umayyads didn’t invent monetary policy based on looting.  It had always been the basis of ancient wartime finance.   (After all, the origin of the word ‘dinar’ is derived from the denarius, used by the Romans.)  Some think that the world’s first coins, created in the seventh century BC, were merely an attempt to efficiently pay mercenary warriors.  In fact, some theorists argue that the origins of market economics and money—and more specifically coined money—are inextricably tied to the violence and trauma of early warfare, which undermined the communal relationships that allowed systems of borrowing and repaying to prevail in peacetime.”

 

 

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24: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Four

SPINDOCMTN BANNER

 

http://www.forbiddenknowledgetv.com/videos/neocon-nwo-ww3/china-and-the-new-world-order.html

http://www.forbiddenknowledgetv.com/videos/ufosinterdimensionalbreakaway-civilization/breakaway-20-et-wars-black-budget-nazi-super-state—dr-joseph-farrell.html

Writing this shit, Jimbo watched the above two videos, both of which float some boats and basically generate fascist agendas while creating narratives full of provocative ideas and important data.  What happened last Monday? 

One things was that the little miracle of the defective pump bellows caused our pump to begin to run constantly.  We threatened to call James beginning tonight, though that doesn’t yet happen.

Learning about Chile, and reentering the Latin universe that so long dominated Jimbo’s thinking, is amazing.  These characters tantalize.  The Eros that Chile promotes in and of itself is worth the price of admission.

Anyhow, ‘missing crucial aspects’ can’t be correct.  Or can it?

Driving and crying are much more frequent these days.  We finally got our claim for per-diem and such out to NWU.  Now we’ll see.

 

A Thought for the Day

IMG_2410

When epic storms threaten to capsize humanity’s collective ship of fate, our joint choices dictate much more than mere matters of many lives or deaths to become issues of social transcendence versus species extinction.

 

Quote of the Day

“As for your doctrines I am prepared to go to the Stake if requisite … I trust you will not allow yourself to be in any way disgusted or annoyed by the considerable abuse & misrepresentation which unless I greatly mistake is in store for you… And as to the curs which will bark and yelp – you must recollect that some of your friends at any rate are endowed with an amount of combativeness which (though you have often & justly rebuked it) may stand you in good stead – I am sharpening up my claws and beak in readiness.”  Thomas H. Huxley to Charles Darwin upon the latter’s decision to publish On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection: http://todayinsci.com/QuotationsCategories/O_Cat/OriginOfSpecies-Quotations.htm.

 

This Day in History

Among certain cognoscenti, today is Evolution Day; shortly after his rise to the throne, sixteen hundred thirty-four years ago, the last emperor to rule over both the Eastern and Western Roman Empire, Theodosius, formally entered Constantinople as leader; five hundred eighty-five years back Joan of Arc began an ultimately unsuccessful siege at La Charite; three hundred eighty-two years ago, meanwhile, the male infant who matured as philosopher and scientist Baruch Spinoza came into the world; the Texas Rangers, essentially a vigilante force of the Texas Provisional Government, first came into existence a hundred seventy-nine years prior to the present pass; one hundred fifty-five years ago, Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species; the baby boy who grew up to become the ‘motivational’ speaker and author Dale Carnegie was born one hundred twenty-six years back; ninety-seven years before the here and now, a bomb in Milwaukee killed nine City Policeman; a male child was born eighty-nine years ago into an upper-crust life that led him to publish the National Review and write many volumes as William F. Buckley; eighty-two years back the Federal Bureau of Investigation initiated its Scientific Crime-Detection Laboratory; Diego Rivera, the famed painter and Communist, died in his native Mexico fifty-seven years prior to this day; the infant girl who became the acclaimed writer, Arundhati Roy, took her first breath fifty-three years ago; the British Broadcasting Corporation’s humorous program, That Was the Week That Was, precisely one year subsequently, began its run; a year later, U.S. television carried the first broadcast murder when Jack Ruby—soon conveniently to die of cancer—shot erstwhile assassin Lee Harvey Oswald on camera, two days after a crossfire had ended the life of President Kennedy; a short-lived imposition of an Autobahn speed limit started in the midst of the ‘Oil Price Crisis’ forty-one years ago, not lasting even a month before its termination; three hundred sixty-five days hence, in 1974, two scientists in Ethiopia exhumed a nearly half-complete female skeleton of Australopithecus Afarensis, which they soon dubbed ‘Lucy,’ a close match to the sought-after missing link; renowned ethicist and philosopher John Rawls died twelve years ago; two years back, over a hundred textile workers died in a fire in a grotesquely unsafe factory in Bangladesh; just a year later, in 2013, Iran and its Western disciplinarians signed a temporary nuclear agreement that eased sanctions and reduced the risk of a possibly incendiary war in Southwest Asia.

 

SEARCH OF THE DAY
“latin america” “united states” empire intervention OR aggression OR invasion murder OR corruption OR profiteering history “political economy” analysis = 2,380,000 Citations.

TOP OF THE FOLD

REFORM’S REQUISITE MAY BE REVOLUTION

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Why-We-Need-Professional-R-by-Chris-Hedges-Movement_People_Political_Power-141124-676.html     An OpEdNews posting about the current state of deflection, dissolution, and repression that confronts those who would build a better society, and how only “professional revolutionists” stand a chance in hell of having much impact under such circumstances: “(E)nvironmental, economic and political grass-roots movements, largely unseen by the wider society, … have severed themselves from the formal structures of power.   They have formed collectives and nascent organizations dedicated to overthrowing the corporate state. They eschew the rigid hierarchical structures of past revolutionary movements — although this may change — for more amorphous collectives.  Plato referred to professional revolutionists as his philosophers.  John Calvin called them his saints.  Machiavelli called them his Republican Conspirators.  Lenin labeled them his Vanguard.  All revolutionary upheavals are built by these entities.”

RECENT BLOG-POSTS

book hor2

NWU NATIONAL & AT-LARGE ANNOUNCEMENTS

A MEMBER’S ARTICLE ABOUT UKRAINE

A TruthOut crossposting of an NWU adherent’s recent report on the situation in Ukraine, from a historical perspective.

JOB & GRANT PROSPECTS, UPCOMING EVENTS & CONTESTS

NANOTECHNOLOGY OPPORTUNITIES

http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2015/nsf15022/nsf15022.jsp?WT.mc_id=USNSF_25&WT.mc_ev=click    From the National Science Foundation, a portal to requested proposals in nanotechnology: “The European Research Area (ERA-NET) is a coordination activity funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Program.  The main objective of an ERA-NET is to provide a framework to network and mutually open national or regional research programs, leading to concrete cooperations, such as the development and implementation of joint transnational calls.  The ERA-NET for Safe Implementation of Innovative Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ERA-NET SIINN) is putting out a call to encourage joint U.S.-European collaborations focusing on the environmental and health effects of manufactured nanomaterial (MNMs) in 4 topic areas.”

NSF WEBINAR DECEMBER 3

http://www.nsf.gov/events/event_summ.jsp?cntn_id=133345&WT.mc_id=USNSF_13&WT.mc_ev=click   An opportunity to take part in a free exchange about cognitive science: “NSF invites you to attend a webinar introducing the new Integrative Strategies for Understanding Neural and Cognitive Systems program (NSF-NCS, NSF- 14-611) on Wednesday, December 3, 2014 at 1:00 PM EST. If you wish to participate in this webinar, you must register for it at: https://nsfevents.webex.com/nsfevents/onstage/g.php?d=748565712&t=a.”

EURO-AMERICAN ROBOTIC COLLABORATION

http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2015/nsf15011/nsf15011.jsp?WT.mc_id=USNSF_25&WT.mc_ev=click    Further Dear Colleague notes from the National Science Foundation, encouraging applications for funding to support robotics research that ties together American and European efforts: “Over the last few years, significant investments have been made by the NSF and European Commission (EC) to develop infrastructure for doing robotics-related research. In many instances, complementary capabilities exist at US and EU institutions. Synergistic partnerships between NSF-funded and EC-funded robotics researchers can provide new opportunities for advancing the field of robotics.”

ORGANIZATIONAL LINKS & NETWORKING

HARM-REDUCTION INSTEAD OF DRUG-WAR

http://www.citylab.com/politics/2014/11/vancouver-experiments-with-prescription-heroin/383097/    An Atlantic Media piece, from CityLab, about a Vancouver experiment with prescription Heroin–untried in North America but common in Europe–as an antidote to organized crime, corruption of police, fascist governmental tactics, and rampant death and harm among users and adjacent populations: “Following a clinical trial involving 26 subjects, doctors at the city’s Providence Medical Clinic have earned permission to provide doses of the drug to a group of 120 severe addicts.  The decision followed a lengthy back-and-forth with Rona Ambrose, Canada’s federal Health Secretary, who opposes the policy.”

WRITERS’ ISSUES & EVENTS & TOOLS

UNEXPECTED POETS

http://blogs.loc.gov/catbird/2014/11/teachers-corner-unexpected-poets/     A Library of Congress Catbird’s Seat blog that encourages the use of primary sources in seeking to contextualize an ‘urge to poetry,’ so to speak: “Bringing primary sources into the poetry and literature classroom and library is one way to foster student engagement, develop critical thinking skills, and build content knowledge.  My goal in this blog series is to offer teaching suggestions connected to specific writers and their work using rich materials from the Library’s collections.  Not everyone who writes poetry calls themselves a poet.  Sometimes people who are well known for a vastly different area of expertise–such as politics, activism, or science–write poetry for pleasure.  Students may be surprised by these poems from historical figures.  Consider the poem “My Childhood-Home I See Again,” written by Abraham Lincoln in 1846 when he was 37 years old and a member of the Illinois House of Representatives.  Offer students the original in Lincoln’s handwriting, but access the transcription to analyze the content of the poem.”

GENERAL MEDIA & ‘INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY’ ISSUES

AN IN-DEPTH CONTEXTUALIZATION OF INTERRELATIONSHIP

http://edge.org/conversation/entwined-fates     An assessment from The Edge about the underpinnings of our inherently “entwined fates” and how addressing these connections is a sine qua non of social viability: “I’m a political scientist, political economist, so I think about this not so much from the perspective of moral reasoning, or philosophy, or psychology for that matter—though all those disciplines come into play in my thinking—but I think about it in terms of the institutional arrangements and contextual arrangements in which people find themselves.  It is about those that evoke certain behaviors as opposed to other kinds of behaviors, and certain attitudes as opposed to other kinds of attitudes, that ultimately lead to actions.   I’m ultimately interested not just in how the individual’s mind works, but how individual minds work together to create an aggregate outcome.”

RECENT HAPPENINGS

HALF-A-LOAF IMMIGRATION MEASURES

http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/immigrants-excluded-obama-plan?utm_source=tny&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=dailyemail&mbid=nl_112814_Daily&CNDID=20305156&spMailingID=7310402&spUserID=MjUyNDM5Mjg3NTUS1&spJobID=562688571&spReportId=NTYyNjg4NTcxS0     A sobering examination from New Yorker about the police-state persistence and arbitrary parameters for inclusion in President Obama’s recent executive action in regard to immigration, points that many fierce proponents of reform decry as antithetical to justice, efficiency, and human decency: “‘For me, there’s not going to be any benefit,’ Vera told me.  He said that he had moved to the U.S. earlier this year after some of his relatives were killed, and he feared for his safety if he had to return.  ‘I haven’t been here for long, and I don’t have children,’ Vera said.  Not only was he unlikely to benefit from Obama’s executive actions, his lawyer, Nilou Khonsari of Pangea Legal Services in San Francisco, had explained that they could actually be bad for him.  ‘I came here fleeing from violence in Mexico, and now they want to send me back,’ Vera told me.”

GENERAL PAST & PRESENT ISSUES & DEVELOPMENTS

CONTINUED, & INCREASING, UKRAINIAN MAYHEM

http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Countries/UA/OHCHR_seventh_reportUkraine20.11.14.pdf   From the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, a seventh report on the devolving situation in Ukraine, one of many(http://www.rogerannis.com/more-obfuscation-in-latest-un-report-on-the-human-rights-situation-in-ukraine/) recent assessments of the conflicts that threaten to worsen catastrophically there: “Despite the ceasefire, which entered into force on 5 September, hostilities in the east and related human rights violations and abuses continued.  On 19 September, in Minsk, the Trilateral Contact Group, with political representatives of the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s Republic,’ and the self-proclaimed ‘Luhansk people’s republic’ agreed on a Memorandum to implement ‘the Peace Plan of the President of Ukraine and the initiatives of the President of the Russian Federation.’  Despite the announcement of ‘silent regimes’ by the Ukrainian Government (on 5 and 7 October) and by the ‘Donetsk people’s republic’ (on 11 October), violations of the ceasefire were reported by the Ukrainian security forces and the armed groups.  Fighting was particularly severe around the Donetsk airport, Debaltseve and Mariupol (Donetsk region), and Shchastia (Luhansk region), causing casualties among civilians, military servicemen, and members of the armed groups.  On average 13 people were killed every day between 6 September and 31 October.”

 

 

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23: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Three

 7A

THOUGHT OF THE DAY

The relationship between the surface and the interior may well mirror the connection between the metropolis and the hinterlands, but, whatever the case may be, no knowledge worth more than a snort and a fart makes a case without looking beneath the exterior and pondering the nature of the networks that connect it inward.

Dreams of snow, of managing art in snowy climes, of avoiding plots to have us snuffed, course through Jimbo’s sleeping brain.  Manifold tasks ahead make the day full, or even overflowing.  And margins can sometimes be so idiotic, as here.

Here’s a new “Solidarity Forever” verse.

The empire’s every statement always starts off with a lie;

And workers who believe this will all too often die.

To resist this, they need only see precisely why

A union makes us strong.

Meanwhile, here’s some editing work.  Whereas Jimbo might manifest an utterly different approach, here he’ll proffer those ideas as comments.

“Hey Trisha!

Attached you will find some revisions for you to consider.  I am addressing matters of technique, such as the blending of second and third person, that most style guides—except in letters such as this—prohibit.  Obviously, you can shrug off such technicalities; my job is to show them to you.

Keep up the good work, and

 

Ciao for now,
Jimbo

GoofyIceHERE ARE EDITS THAT ARE TECHNICALLY CORRECT  No matter where or at what point in life one finds oneself, at whatever stage of career or personal engagement—constantly living in built environments, in the hustle-bustle, in the zooming pace of metro life anywhere—returning to nature every now and then is salubrious. Nature’s deep wells hide treasures that effect peace or even offer a portal into some of life’s most powerful experiences. One cannot access these benefits or these pathways without having some kind of link with these portals of nature.

Moreover, the ultra-technical lives that we lead weaken our engagement with nature. A day of labor is mostly spent in offices, in front of computers, or in other fieldwork where the city-maze’s organized structures dominate. The rest of our weekdays are spent at home, often with family, and our weekends also unfold at home, or in social gatherings, or in shopping or other social activities or in time when we are by ourselves. Hardly ever do we make time for activities that are nature bound.

Nevertheless, sometimes, the very essence of life is silence, and finding this requisite stillness in chaotic and artificial city locales is difficult at best. If one wishes to have access to this silence, then being close to nature in its myriad forms can provide one with havens of quiet and beauty. Any place close to the sea, rivers, lakes, mountains, hills, forests, plateaus, meadows, valleys, fields—away from walls of concrete and cities’ constructions of wealth and excess—perfectly facilitates access to this quietude. Such environments are allegorically portals of nature—gateways into silence and perfection.

Proximity to these portals—even if only occasional—ushers in some of the latent treasures of life. Thus, arguably, such interludes are definitely all-important. If we constantly wrestle with our lives’ problems, gaining perspectives essential to solutions may only be possible when we are farther away from our issues. Natural portals can provide us with fresh points of view, helping us to see our difficulties from a fresh angle, with a new pair of glasses.

Elements of nature always surround us—oceans, skies, the earth, the wind, greenery, sand, beautiful flora and fauna; even musical embodiments of nature bring us closer to our animal selves in a biological world. Connecting our routine lives to nature in some fashion offers balance and stability all around. Irrespective of where one is, what one is doing, maintaining such natural connections, in whatever tiny way possible, helps one to understand and gain better insights about all life’s travails.

 

And the Victor Jara treadmill has actually begun.  The stove continues in naughty, fucked-up cloggishness.  Hou and Boo move along.

 

 

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22: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-Two

 

book hor

THOUGHT OF THE DAY

Completion is ever the basis for inception: even death merely inaugurates various post-mortems, from bacterial to cultural; every other ‘ending’ leads to new work, new struggle, and so forth.

The fifty-first anniversary of the first modern Presidential-assassination-conspiracy unfolds today.  This yields plentiful thinking, with internal dialogs with Sir Douglas, about the way that practically everything in existence now is the manifestation of one conspiratorial turn or another.

The track to Victor Jara has opened up now.  Will it yield fruit?  Certainly that is the goal. 

LakeImagingShowers and then loving fun, a two-backed beast with heads and asses intertwined.  What awesome frenzied yum. 

“I repeat, there is no famine in China,” said Francois Mitterand.  David Rockefeller’s “From a China Traveler” too.  Corbett’s sanctimony is of course noisome, but the tidbits are part of what folks must note.

Shopping, collecting from Contributoria, building cash, engaging money-management protocols, and readying for a vortex of production are the order of the day.  Networking and ‘putting ourselves out there’ in the ongoing global dialog are also the order of the day.  Tikkun’s work in setting up ‘Town Meetings’ is an example of this, and dozens of other cases are also present, were we more organized and potent.

This very brief chapter inevitably follows from realities of deadlines.  So there!!

 

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21: A Month of Nows, Roots of Thens

December 1, 2014 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Chapter Twenty-One

 

leaf3Drafts and crafts must typify the present pass, one way or another.  More smoky diasterosity characterizes our fucking stove.  Both Alicia and Jimbo imagine all manner of conspiracies to account for things.  How sad; how funny; not necessarily false of course, but then probity will ever remain elusive in such matters, at least for the overwhelming majority of cases.

Writing these things from a deadline-cusp, recollection is at the most optimistic ephemeral.  Yet here we go again.  Listening to the Corbett report about China and conflict and cooperation in relation to the U.S., as a template that such as Anthony C. Sudden/Sutton have noticed—Hoover Institute ‘scholarship’ and more.   Corbett is such a fascist in waiting—three times of socialism: Bolshevik, National, and Welfare, oh my.

Just finished listening to Martian conspiracy by UFO fuckers.  Again, oh my.

“Completely Nonsensical” ends up making sense.  But what really makes sense is more thrashing and crashing around the doors of orgasmic frenzy.  And then we have this little missive to dear Chall Grey—what a story!

French opium den Public Domain

French opium den Public Domain

Hey Chall!

The evergreen gig will not be a happening thing.  Cheap trees were plentiful last year on the 25/70 bypass around Marshall, but that’s probably a week or so away yet.

How did your poetry reading go?  Any onliine audio or other links?  Inquiring minds always want to know.

You may already have made a visit to Contributoria at this juncture; the site doesn’t indicate from where our points are coming.  We’re close to having another project backed, so if you haven’t ‘contributed’ yet, we’d bow and scrape shamelessly to encourage you to do so.

Thanks man!  2015 ought to be a great year for backgammon. 

 

This Day in History

Today is both World Television Day officially and World Hello Day unofficially; twenty-one hundred and seventy-eight years ago, more or less, a Jewish leader of the Hasmonean family resuscitated the Jerusalem Temple, thereby establishing the basis for Hanukkah each year among Jews; an army of Turkic and Central Asian forces led by Timur(or Tamerlane) sacked the Georgian capitol of Tbilisi six hundred twenty-eight years back, taking the Georgian king himself captive; the settlers aboard the Mayflower signed their famous ‘compact’ three hundred ninety-four years prior to the present pass; a baby boy came into the world three hundred twenty years ago, destined to grow up as Voltaire, a renowned philosopher and thinker; two and a quarter centuries ago, North Carolina became the twelfth jurisdiction of the United States when its representatives ratified the Constitution; a male American infant was born a hundred ninety-six years back who would mature as Lewis H. Morgan, whose anthropological investigations laid the basis for work by European thinkers as diverse as Charles Darwin and Friedrich Engels; Thomas Edison a hundred thirty-seven years before the here-and-now announced that he had invented a phonograph, a mechanism capable of making and playing recorded sounds; Japanese soldiers a hundred twenty years back captured Port Arthur and, according to some sources, slaughtered many civilians there after this decisive Sino-Japanese war victory; one hundred twelve years back, the boy child who received the name Isaac Bashevis Singer was born, destined to grow up to win the Nobel Prize in Literature; a brief paper by Albert Einstein a hundred nine years ago elicited the formula for showing the equivalence between energy and mass, or E=mc-Squared; Brazilian sailors rebelled on some of their navy’s most powerful fighting ships a hundred four years back, in an uprising that they referred to as “the revolt of the lash;” Polish partisans murdered several hundred Jews and Ukrainians near present-day Lviv ninety-six years prior to this day, in a pogrom that paralleled the revolutionary upheaval of the formation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics; in Columbine, Colorado eighty-seven years ago, a force of hired mine guards and State Police gunned down miners with machine guns during a strike action that we now know as the Columbine Mine Massacre; sixty-nine years back, the United Auto Workers led strikes in ninety-two manufacturing facilities in fifty different cities simultaneously in backing up workers’ calls for higher wages; the British Museum of Natural History sixty-one years ago acknowledged that the so-called ‘Piltdown-Man’ skull was a fabrication and a hoax; fifty-two years prior to the present pass, China’s Peoples Liberation Army announced a unilateral cease-fire in the Sino-Indian War; a baby girl came into the world three years subsequently and twelve thousand miles away in Iceland, who grew up to claim the name Bjork and work as an iconoclastic and world famous singer-songwriter, feminist, and thespian; the first permanent networking link on the Internet predecessor Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Network, or ARPANET, activated its connection forty-five years ago between UCLA and the Stanford Research Institute; precisely a decade later, in 1979, attacks on the U.S. embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan killed four and wounded many more; U.S. Naval Intelligence Analyst Jonathon Pollard found himself under arrest twenty-nine years ago for espionage, accused of handing over files to Israel, charges for which he subsequently faced a sentence of life in prison; a year hence to the day, Oliver North and his assistant were shredding documents that implicated them in selling arms to Iran in order to garner cash to proffer to the anti-government Contra forces of Nicaragua, in contravention of both U.S. and international law; a decade ago, the financial cabal that calls itself the Club of Paris agreed to write off up to 80% or Iraq’s $100 billion in outstanding debt, and, in a prequel to the Maidan uprising in Ukraine, a so-called ‘Golden Revolution’ invalidated Viktor Yanukovych’s election in a runoff that both the United States and the European Union labeled corrupt; legendary science fiction author Anne McCaffrey died three years ago today; two years subsequently, just last year, acclaimed journalist and critic Clyde Egerton breathed his last.

 

SEARCH OF THE DAY
“homo sapiens” OR “human origins” clan lineage consanguinity rules OR strictures history OR anthropology origins = 10,700 Results.

TOP OF THE FOLD

ARROGANT ASSININITY ABOUT UKRAINE

www.truthdig.com/report/item/obama_remains_high-handed_–_and_wrong_–_about_ukraine_20141119     A reality-based blast from TruthDig regarding the Group-of-Twenty meeting in Brisbane, Australia, where the thuggish duplicities of imperial leaders berated Vladimir Putin in the context of utterly ignoring their own frequent and vicious depredations: “President Obama’s final words to Mr. Putin set the pattern for hypocrisy: ‘(We are) very firm on the need to uphold core international principles, and one of those principles is you don’t invade other countries or finance proxies … to break up a country that has mechanisms for democratic elections.’  (Perhaps) no one in his own government has yet worked up the courage to tell Mr. Obama that … his own United States State Department … arranged a public uprising in Kiev last February, against a democratically elected (if corrupt) president of Ukraine, and sponsored the coup d’etat that made Arseniy Yatsenyuk (known as ‘Yats’ in the department) prime minister.  The Washington-sponsored coup occurred before there were any Russian troops in Ukraine, and before either government had as yet dreamed that Mr. Putin would annex Crimea in retaliation.”

RECENT BLOG-POSTS

book hor2

NWU NATIONAL & AT-LARGE ANNOUNCEMENTS

A MEMBER’S INSPIRING REMARKS AT THE N.B.A. CEREMONY

http://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/national-book-awards-ursula-le-guin?utm_source=tny&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=dailyemail&mbid=nl_112014_Daily&CNDID=20305156&spMailingID=7302546&spUserID=MjUyNDM5Mjg3NTUS1&spJobID=562231375&spReportId=NTYyMjMxMzc1S0     From the New Yorker, a summary of commentary at this week’s National Book Awards ceremony, where longstanding member Ursala LeGuin accepted a lifetime literary achievement medal and spoke truth to power from the podium in her speech: “I think hard times are coming, when we will be wanting the voices of writers who can see alternatives to how we live now, and can see through our fear-stricken society and its obsessive technologies, to other ways of being.  And even imagine some real grounds for hope.  We will need writers who can remember freedom: poets, visionaries—the realists of a larger reality.  Right now, I think we need writers who know the difference between production of a market commodity and the practice of an art.  The profit motive is often in conflict with the aims of art.  We live in capitalism. Its power seems inescapable; so did the divine right of kings. … Power can be resisted and changed by human beings; resistance and change often begin in art, and very often in our art—the art of words.  I’ve had a long career and a good one, in good company, and here, at the end of it, I really don’t want to watch American literature get sold down the river. … The name of our beautiful reward is not profit.  Its name is freedom.”
JOB & GRANT PROSPECTS, UPCOMING EVENTS & CONTESTS

BEYOND TURING CONFERENCE IN AUSTIN

http://www.math.unipd.it/~frossi/BeyondTuring2015/    An upcoming event in Texas’ capitol, an introduction to the current state of contextualizing and grounding artificial intelligence, work that researchers in many other venues(http://www.newswise.com/articles/view/626420/?sc=swhn) are also carrying out(http://arxiv.org/pdf/1410.6142v1.pdf): “The Turing test, now over 60 years old, has long served as a highly visible, public signpost for research in artificial intelligence.  It is also highly game-able, and arguably in desperate need for a refresh.  The purpose of this workshop, modeled on a set of early meetings that helped shape the annual RoboCup competitions, is to seek community input.  More precisely, at this workshop, our goal is to craft a replacement, an annual or bi-annual Turing Championship, that might consist of 3-5 different challenging tasks, with bragging rights given to the first programs to achieve human-level performance in each task.”

 

NSF’S GRANT PROPOSAL GUIDE

http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/policydocs/pappguide/nsf15001/gpg_index.jsp?WT.mc_id=USNSF_109   For everything from soup-to-nuts, undergraduate to post-doctoral research and beyond, an outline of protocols and parameters for submitting proposals and such.

ORGANIZATIONAL LINKS & NETWORKING

SCIENTIFIC SEXUALITY REVIEWED

http://theconversation.com/hunt-to-discover-the-secret-of-sexuality-is-far-from-over-34377?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+20+November+2014+-+2107&utm_content=Latest+from+The+Conversation+for+20+November+2014+-+2107+CID_911bc58342f028ae288754839c7bfb18&utm_source=campaign_monitor_uk&utm_term=Hunt%20to%20discover%20the%20secret%20of%20sexuality%20is%20far%20from%20over     A well-curated compilation from one of the English scholars who typify The Conversation, about the “stuttered” history of sexology as a discipline and some of what that might mean for human beings: “The exhibition traces the development of this science, revealing how, as curator Kate Forde says: ‘each generation likes to think that it invented sex’ – or, at least, how sex ought to be.  Everyone has an opinion on what French philosopher Michel Foucault described as the ‘secret’ of sexuality.  The 19th-century Argentinean politician, Juan Bautista Alberdi argued that ‘to govern was to populate.’  British campaigner Marie Stopes believed that making contraceptives available, especially to the poor, would enable the ‘race’ to improve.  The Austrian psychoanalyst, Wilhelm Reich, explained sexual repression as a consequence of an authoritarian character, providing one of the earliest explanations of the rise of Nazism as a result of damming up the ‘orgasmic convulsion.’  The list goes on.”

CULTURE & POLITICS, UKRAINIAN STYLE

http://www.dazeddigital.com/photography/article/22534/1/boys-don-t-cry?utm_source=MadMimi&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Dazed+Sex+Survey%3A+US+vs+UK+|+Jacques+Greene%27s+New+Video+|+Guide+to+Breaking+the+Internet&utm_campaign=20141120_m123194012_Dazed+Sex+Survey%3A+US+vs+UK+|+Jacques+Greene%27s+New+Video+|+Guide+to+Breaking+the+Internet&utm_term=1097162_JPG     A briefing and overview of a Kiev photography-and-culture collective that critically examines life in its lenses, from Dazed, in a no-critical-distance-whatsoever bow to imperial supremacy, one of hundreds of grassroots reports about Ukrainian on-the-ground realities–ranging from the minimally distorted to the fatuously false–in realms as disparate as politics(http://www.alternet.org/world/how-israel-lobby-protected-ukrainian-neo-nazis?akid=12483.279476.rjePv2&rd=1&src=newsletter1027326&t=3) and militarism(http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/13-Persons-Killed-Every-Day-in-Ukraine-Since-the-Cease-Fire-Began-20141120-0012.html) and social engagement and more: “With Vladimir Putin leaving the G20 summit early this week after reports the Russian president copped some (much deserved) flack from other world leaders – here’s looking at you, Obama – and essentially realised that no one really wants to hang out with him, we couldn’t think of a more appropriate time to showcase Ukrainian photography collective GORSAD’s Boys Don’t Cry.  Putin has certainly fuelled creative fires around both the Ukraine and Russia, allowing for fertile ground to garner ideas, momentum and of course, controversy.  But there’s no denying that the country’s uneasy political climate has been a thorn in GORSAD’s – and other artists’ – side.  ‘We publish mainly abroad,’ the collective explain.  ‘Therefore, there is no problem with the lack of understanding.'”

SOCIAL DIVIDES, DIGITAL DIVISION, & THE INTERNET

http://www.worldwatch.org/digital-dilemma-internet-killing-or-saving-planet     A new report from WorldWatch Institute about the paradoxes and possibilities of virtuality and rise of web culture, in terms of creating sustainable relationships(http://www.worldwatch.org/bookstore/publication/state-world-2014-governing-sustainability) among ourselves: “When the first Earth Day was celebrated on April 22, 1970, the collection of ideas and artifacts that is now known as the Internet was only a research and development program at the U.S. Department of Defense.  Meanwhile, environmental advocates of the era were fighting large, complex technological systems, such as nuclear power and industrialized agriculture, as threats to both the ecosphere and democratic self-governance.  Yet when big digital systems began to take hold in the 1980s, these expanding pervasive and powerful technologies were rarely criticized.  Today, a true understanding of their environmental and social impacts is urgently needed in order to navigate—or resist—technology’s growing influence.”

EMPIRICAL ANALYSIS OF CLIMATE CHANGE REVERSAL POSSIBILITIES

http://spectrum.ieee.org/energy/renewables/what-it-would-really-take-to-reverse-climate-change/?utm_source=techalert&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=112014    A massive longform assessment from two participants in Google’s now-abandoned renewable-energy electricity initiative, via the Institute for Electrical & Electronic Engineers, of empirical and analytical perspectives about the challenges of carbon, cost, and power production: “Google’s boldest energy move was an effort known as RE<C, which aimed to develop renewable energy sources that would generate electricity more cheaply than coal-fired power plants do.  The company announced that Google would help promising technologies mature by investing in start-ups and conducting its own internal R&D.  Its aspirational goal: to produce a gigawatt of renewable power more cheaply than a coal-fired plant could, and to achieve this in years, not decades.  Unfortunately, not every Google moon shot leaves Earth orbit.  In 2011, the company decided that RE<C was not on track to meet its target and shut down the initiative.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

FREDERICK DOUGLASS PORTALS

http://blogs.loc.gov/teachers/2014/11/frederick-douglass-activist-and-autobiographer/     Insightful and extensive tools and approaches for pondering Frederick Douglass specifically and the experience of enslavement from the slave’s perspective generally, from Library of Congress: “Last November, we published a post addressing the controversies associated with Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.  A recent comment pointed out that Huck’s views on slavery are those of the dominant society of the time.  Because the post featured a letter from Frederick Douglass as a supplement to the novel, the commenter wondered ‘why not present the experiences and views of the oppressed rather than the oppressor?’  That struck me as an intriguing question, so here are a few places to start exploring those views and experiences with your students.”

CROWDSOURCING FROM UNICEF

http://www.techrepublic.com/article/unicef-crowdsources-report-on-worlds-children-to-inspire-innovation-and-localize-solutions/?tag=nl.e101&s_cid=e101&ttag=e101&ftag=TRE684d531     A Tech Republic gateway to recent UNICEF publications(http://sowc2015.unicef.org/report/part-1/) on innovative approaches to youth issues, work that the agency has in no small measure crowdsourced as a collaborative, grassroots venture(http://www.unicef.org/publications/files/SOWC_2015_Summary_and_Tables.pdf) on the twenty-fifth anniversary of United Nations Convention on The Year of the Child(http://www.unicef.org/crc/): “Kartik Sawhney was denied access to study science in India because he is visually impaired, and authorities said there were too many visual elements to the courses.  He finally convinced them to let him in, but none of his textbooks were in a format he could use.  He had to type them out instead.  The real trouble came with graphs — he had difficulty figuring out the shape of graphs to analyze them.  So, he developed software that would allow the graphs to be translated into audio — ‘like an arc of sound,’ he said.  If there’s an increase in frequency, the graph is obviously sloping upwards.  If it’s constant, the slope is at zero.  Sawhney’s story is just one inspiring example of tech innovation led by children that is highlighted in UNICEF’s The State of the World’s Children Report – Reimagine the future: Innovation, which was released Thursday, Nov. 20 on the 25th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.”

MEXICAN MELTDOWNS, INTENSIFYING

http://portside.org/2014-11-19/main-mexico-leftist-party-verge-dissolution-leader-says   A brief from PortSide Labor about the collapse that appears imminent in Mexico’s institutional ‘leftist’ organization, as a result of violence–especially against students and youth–and the ongoing impact of the grotesque and murderous fraud of the so-called ‘War-on-Drugs,’ topics that a wide range of media outlets such as The Guardian have also been reporting deeply(http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/nov/20/mexico-protests-anti-government-anger-violence-students-president?CMP=ema_565) of late: “The elder statesman of Mexico’s main leftist party said on Sunday the group was on the verge of falling apart after a series of mistakes and the disappearance of 43 students in a state it runs in the southwest of the country.  Three-times presidential candidate Cuauhtemoc Cardenas said the opposition Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), which finished runner-up in Mexico’s last two presidential elections, had lost its moral authority and needed urgent reform.”

‘TREATMENT’ PROFITEERING

http://www.afsc.org/sites/afsc.civicactions.net/files/documents/TIC_report_online.pdf    A relatively short White Paper from the American Friends Service Committee about one of its signature areas of investigation, for profit prisons, in this case focusing on so-called ‘treatments’ that increase corporate income but reduce chances for rehabilitation or even functionality among the fallen, a peek into the ubiquitous research and manipulation surrounding ‘illegal drug’ use, on the one hand(http://www.newswise.com/articles/view/626460/?sc=dwhn), and prescribed ‘medicine,’ on the other hand(http://www.newswise.com/articles/view/626432/?sc=dwhn): ” Private prison corporations have profited from, and at times contributed to, the expansion of tough-on-crime and anti-immigrant policies that have driven prison expansion.  This confluence of special interests and profit-driven policy-making has been referred to as the ‘prison industrial complex.’  This brief describes the expansion of the incarceration industry away from warehousing and into areas that traditionally were focused on treatment and care of individuals involved in the criminal justice system–prison medical care, forensic mental hospitals, civil commitment centers, and ‘community corrections’ programs such as halfway houses and home arrest.  While the prison industrial complex was dependent on incarceration or detention in prisons, jails, and other correctional institutions, this emerging ‘treatment industrial complex’ allows the same corporations (and many new ones) to profit from providing treatment-oriented programs and services.”

UBIQUITOUS RENEWABLE ISSUES & NETWORKSFarmerBooFaveScrSh

https://medium.com/solutions-journal-summer-2014       An issue of Rocky Mountain Institute’s journal, Solutions, which brims with articles, leads, and briefs about the potential to proffer power to people in much more sustainable and ecologically benign fashion than is currently the case, a proposition that recent research in battery storage(http://www.technologyreview.com/news/532311/a-battery-to-prop-up-renewable-power-hits-the-market/?utm_campaign=newsletters&utm_source=newsletter-daily-all&utm_medium=email&utm_content=20141114) and close-to-unanimous community support for wind and similar projects(http://www.newswise.com/articles/view/626131/?sc=dwhn) make clear, while compensation for nuclear giants from Germany(http://spectrum.ieee.org/energywise/energy/nuclear/swedish-energy-giant-vattenfall-nets-billions-for-nuclear-phaseout/?utm_source=energywise&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=111914) and intense debates about a role for nuclear(http://www.tikkun.org/tikkundaily/2014/11/17/the-nuclear-power-debate/?utm_source=Tikkun+Daily+Daily+Digest&utm_campaign=3ac09f91a7-DAILY_DIGEST_EMAIL&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_19adec7513-3ac09f91a7-106980657) provide further context.

VAST L.O.C. & GOVERNMENT DATA TROVES

http://blogs.loc.gov/digitalpreservation/2014/11/all-the-news-thats-fit-to-archive/     Another portal to the incalculably invaluable Library of Congress collections for writers, in this case one of several digital archiving initiatives in relation to newspapers and news sites, with context about other efforts from LOC also present, one of dozens of outreach notes in a given period of time that cover such diverse topics as street-art-&-poetry(http://blogs.loc.gov/catbird/2014/11/the-writings-on-the-wall-found-poetry-in-street-art/), accessing treaty information(http://blogs.loc.gov/law/2014/11/u-s-treaties-a-beginners-guide/), identifying and using primary source material to facilitate storytelling skills(http://blogs.loc.gov/teachers/2014/11/storytelling-and-songwriting-making-connections-through-primary-sources/), and even podcasts of primary source and other online learning experiences(https://locosi.adobeconnect.com/p2gb4wd0h4f/?launcher=false&fcsContent=true&pbMode=normal), materials that various news reporting organizations supplement by illuminating other governmental moves to open up access to the almost incalculable quantity of data that our government collects(http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2014/11/18/theres-a-commerce-department-swat-team-opening-up-government-data/): “Our newspaper collections are invaluable to researchers.  Newspapers provide a first-hand draft of history.  They provide supplemental information that cannot be found anywhere else.  They ‘fill in the gaps,’ so to speak.  The way people access news has been changing and evolving ever since newspapers were first being published.  We recognized the need to capture news published in another format.  It is reasonable to expect us to continue to connect these kinds of resources to our current and future patrons.  Websites tend to be ephemeral and may disappear completely.  Without a designated archive, critical news content may be lost.
WRITERS’ ISSUES & EVENTS & TOOLSNYT

STORIES’ INHERENT SYMPATICO TO ‘PITCHES’

http://theconversation.com/ utm_medium=e  product%20placement    A lovely contextualization from The Conversation of the historical background, without much in the way of political economy or social conceptualization, of writers who receive ‘patronage’ from megabucks corporations as exemplary of a ‘long tradition’ of this sort of relationship: “Boyd is in good company when it comes to this kind of sponsorship.  In 2001, Fay Weldon took a cheque from jewellers Bulgari to write her novel The Bulgari Connection, while BMW commissioned writers to produce audio books in 2005.  Ian Fleming was commissioned by the Kuwaiti Oil Company to write a book on the country and its oil industry (though it was never published because the Kuwaiti government disapproved).  Artists need patrons, and patrons have priorities.  It was ever thus.”

HOMEPAGE’S CRITICAL FUNCTIONS

http://www.editorandpublisher.com/Newsletter/Columns/Digital-Publishing–There-s-No-Place-Like-Home    A dose of textual realpolitick for our digital age, from Editor & Publisher, providing both the basis for and some of the superstructure of how homepages are essential as an interface for engagement in any media work: “Despite the reduction in traffic, newspaper homepages harken(sic) back to the historic place the front page of a newspaper had in the community.  Forgive me for sidestepping into marketing speak, but editors should think of their news organization’s homepage as their ultimate brand statement.  In an instant, members of the community (both readers and advertisers) can quickly see what the site is about, what’s going on that’s important to the community and why they should bother spending time there.  In an Internet ecosystem that is becoming more and more scattered, media organizations do have an ability to build brand loyalty with readers, and the homepage can still play an important part in nurturing that loyalty.”

POSSIBLE GREAT NEWS FOR JOURNALISTS FROM EGYPT

http://www.france24.com/en/20141120-egypt-general-sissi-exclusive-france-24-libya-jazeera-journalists/    From France24, a twenty-five minute video interview between a correspondent and Egyptian President Abdel al-Sisi, in which the possibility for a pardon of Al Jazeera journalists is one topic of conversation: “In his first-ever interview with a European media outlet, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said that issuing a presidential pardon for three al Jazeera journalists currently imprisoned in Egypt ‘is currently under discussion.’  The journalists were sentenced to at least seven years in prison in June for aiding a ‘terrorist organisation’ and undermining the national interest for their dealings with members of the Muslim Brotherhood in a ruling that sparked an international outcry.  Al Jazeera has denied the accusations.”

GENERAL MEDIA & ‘INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY’ ISSUES

DIVIDE-&-CONQUER PROPAGANDA VIA FILM

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/11/20/east-n20.html   Another deeply-reported review essay from World Socialist Website about a quarter-century old ‘Eastern European’ film festival that takes place in Germany near its border with Poland, in environs beset by social meltdown and growing inequality and reaction, thanks to restored ‘free markets’ and ‘freedom’s’ imperial imprimatur generally, a dandy context, from the perspective of rulers, for playing up identity politics: “Increasing disillusionment with official politics in Eastern Europe is expressed in record low turn-outs in one election after another.   Political parties and slogans are regarded as interchangeable.  Plutocrats have now decided that often the best way to defend and expand their business and financial interests is to finance their own political parties and run the government.  The most prominent example is Ukraine, currently ruled by billionaire Petro Poroshenko, the ‘Chocolate King,’ who has the full backing of the EU.  Against such a background of explosive tensions, the organisers of the 24th Cottbus film festival decided to dedicate one of the event’s central sections to what its programme describes as ‘homosexual life worlds.’  There can be no doubt that gays and lesbians face considerable discrimination in many eastern European countries where the church and nationalist, homophobic groups play a significant role in political life.  But the prioritisation of gay rights in the current situation sends a definite signal.  In particular, it creates a platform for parties such as the Greens and various pseudo-left organisations working together with selected NGOs to elevate identity politics above social issues.”

ROBOTS A-COMING

http://www.technologyreview.com/news/532431/rise-of-the-robot-security-guards/?utm_campaign=newsletters&utm_source=newsletter-daily-all&utm_medium=email&utm_content=20141120   An MIT Technology Review report about a company’s ‘autonomous security robots’ that will permit centralization and reduction of human guardians in various contexts, such as Microsoft campuses, one of many recent examinations of the horizon of autonomy(http://www.nsf.gov/discoveries/disc_summ.jsp?cntn_id=133392&WT.mc_id=USNSF_51&WT.mc_ev=click), looming ever closer: “In order to do the kind of work a human security guard would normally do, the K5 uses cameras, sensors, navigation equipment, and electric motors—all packed into its dome-shaped body with a big rechargeable battery and a computer.  There are four high-definition cameras (one on each side of the robot), a license-plate recognition camera, four microphones, and a weather sensor (which looks like a DVD-player slot) for measuring barometric pressure, carbon dioxide levels, and temperature.  The robots use Wi-Fi or a wireless data network to communicate with each other and with people who can remotely monitor its cameras, microphones, and other sources of data.”

RECENT HAPPENINGS

COLOMBIAN ‘PEACE PROCESSES’ & VIOLENCE

http://www.telesurtv.net/english/opinion/Colombia-The-Early-Signs-of-a-Violent-Peace-20141117-0044.html     A news-analysis from TeleSur that shows the intricacies and dire conflicts that underlie Colombian attempts to bring peace and reconciliation in relation to the Andean nation’s longstanding civil conflicts, in which revolutionary groups confront a government that is close to one hundred percent a ‘creature’ of U.S. imperial and corporate interests, in between both of which social forces citizens and indigenous people often find themselves: “A billboard set up by FARC with Cano’s picture, reads, ‘We will not relent for one instant in the struggle for a political solution to the conflict, for our principles, for the certainties that motivate us, because we are revolutionaries, because we love peace. – Sixth Front, Western Bloc, Commander Alfonso Cano.’  While the FARC considers northern Cauca to be its territory, and recruits Nasa people to its ranks, the Nasa have struggled at great cost for autonomy in their territory.  Over the decades, the Nasa have liberated much of their territory from the speculators and large landowners who had stolen it from them, established their own municipal governments, and administered their own traditional justice system, at communal assemblies.  In order to resist armed attacks, usually by the state and paramilitaries but too often also by the FARC, the Nasa have a traditional ‘indigenous guard’, a standing organization of people who carry nothing but traditional sticks as a symbol of their authority, who have played a major role in maintaining the indigenous people in their territory, resisting all of the forces that have sought to displace them.”

PREPARING ‘EXTRAORDINARY RENDITION’ IN FERGUSON

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/11/20/ferg-n20.html   Incisive analysis from World Socialist Website of the political repression that Missouri is preparing to deploy against social protest over police murder in and around Ferguson, as well as a critical examination of the almost total void of either analysis or critique of these developments among corporate media outlets: “One searches in vain in the establishment media, including its ‘left’ representatives, for any criticism of the move, or even any serious analysis of its consequences.  Outside the commentaries and interviews with area residents posted on the World Socialist Web Site, moreover, there is no reporting on the immense hostility among workers and youth in Ferguson to the decision, which is correctly seen as an assault on their democratic right to protest police violence.  (I)n its editorial pages,…(t)he Wall Street Journal urges Obama to intensify the crackdown in order to ‘defend the rule of law and public order,’ while the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Nation magazine have not commented on the frontal attack on First Amendment rights taking place in Missouri.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGENERAL PAST & PRESENT ISSUES & DEVELOPMENTS
TOLSTOY’S APPEAL TO WORKING PEOPLE
http://www.nonresistance.org/docs_pdf/Tolsto One of those seminal works that, even as one might critique it on different grounds, one must first read and understand it, since it lays a foundation for understanding important aspects : “I have but little time left to live,and I should like before my death to tell you, the working people, what I have been thinking about your oppressed condition and about those means which will help you to free yourselves from it.  Maybe something of what I have been thinking (and I have been thinking much about it) will do you some good.”

WAR & HOMELESSNESS, FROM CRS

http://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL34024.pdf   A typically thorough overview from the Congressional Research Service, only available to scrappy scribes and citizens as a result of the advocacy of the Federations of American Scientists, in this case a research compilation about the issues that surround homelessness among veterans: “The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan brought renewed attention to the needs of veterans, including the needs of homeless veterans.  Researchers have found both male and female veterans to be overrepresented in the homeless population, and, as the number of veterans increased due to these conflicts, there was concern that the number of homeless veterans could rise commensurately.   The 2007-2009 recession and the subsequent slow economic recovery also raised concerns that homelessness could increase among all groups, including veterans.”

 

 

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