Edward S. Herman
Nicolas J.S. Davies
War in Mali
A Lock on the House
Double Dip Recession
Politics of Austerity
Compiled by Joel Chaffee
The Z Page
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Internet News Items
Susie Day (mrzine.monthlyreview.org) emailed an article titled “Zero Dark Thirty: The Woman’s Guide to Success Through Torture.”
See the Globe. More than half the 7 billion people on the Globe are women. Women are different from men. Why are women different from men? Because, according to international humanitarian agencies, women have special percentages that stick out. See women’s percentages:
Women make up 70% of the world’s poor
Women do 66% of the world’s work yet receive 11% of the world’s income
Of the 130,000,000 children who currently do not go to school, 2/3 are girls
Gender-based violence kills 1 in 3 women
These are bad percentages. Why are these bad percentages? Because they reflect global sexism. What is sexism? It is the belief that women are inferior to men. How can women triumph over sexism? Who cares? Let’s watch TV.
II. The Golden Globes
See the awards ceremony. The Golden Globes recognizes artistic achievement in television and film. This year’s ceremony was touted as a woman’s event, where “Strong Women Dominate.” See women triumph over sexism by winning awards. See the two funny women MCs hand out prizes. See a delicate blonde woman win “Best Actress in a TV Drama” for playing a CIA agent who fights evil Muslims.
Now, see a delicate strawberry-blonde woman win “Best Actress in a Film Drama” for playing a CIA agent who helps torture evil Muslims. Win, win, win.
See these two women winners combine the “feminine” virtues of being delicate and blonde with the “masculine” virtue of being on top. They have discovered that all you have to do to triumph over sexism is to (a) be a legal resident of the United States; (b) possess breathtaking Western beauty with the symmetrical cheekbones reminiscent of a female cyborg; (c) wear a low-cut, $2,000,000 gown; and (d) act the female lead in stories about how torture renders men inferior.
III. Zero Dark Thirty
See the first high-tech, big-budget feature film about finding and killing Osama Bin-Laden. On second thought, don’t. Instead, see the film’s director. The film’s director is a woman. She may not have a Golden Globe, but she does have big balls. Why does she have big balls? An important male film critic has called this woman “in a nice way, Hollywood’s ballsiest director.” Thank you, Mr. Film Critic. We women know we are doing something right when you ascribe to us “balls” that are “nice.”
The director’s ballsiness has allowed her to take cinematic risks. What is one of those risks? The director has spliced a state-of- the-art, you-are-there, documentary-style film with scenes resembling cutting-room footage from a Saw movie. She has elevated B-movie torture to the level of fine American infotainment.
IV. The Only Good Muslim Is an Interrogated Muslim
See the 3,000 human beings who tragically perished in the World Trade Center attacks on September 11. Do not see the hundreds upon thousands of human beings who tragically perished in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, due to subsequent U.S. invasions, bombings, and drone attacks. Do not see flashbacks of the United States creating and supporting dictatorial regimes to facilitate oil drilling in the region. Do not see Western sanctions imposed on Iraq, years before September 11, 2001, which killed an estimated 500,000 Iraqi children. Also do not see people having qualms about the wisdom of killing Bin-Laden in the first place or the ethics of assassinating anyone, based on a president’s secret “kill list.”
See the pale strawberry-blonde woman help U.S. agents starve Muslims, strip Muslims naked, drag Muslims around on dog leashes, waterboard Muslims, kick and punch Muslims, scream in Muslim’s faces, hang Muslims from the ceiling, and cram Muslims into tiny wooden boxes—all without losing an ounce of her femininity.
These interrogations are hard to watch. Why are these interrogations hard to watch? Because they are hard on the Muslims? No, because they are hard on the CIA interrogators.
V. No Justice; Blonde Peace
Onward. The pale, strawberry- blonde woman will lead her team onward. The torture-derived information will lead to Osama Bin-Laden. And once the evil Bin-Laden is killed (along with a few evil nameless bystanders), the entire U.S. Department of Defense will never be sexist again.
Soon American women of all hair colors and coiffures will be allowed in front-line combat. Why, look. The Pentagon has just announced that it will allow women in front-line combat. Yay. With friends like the U.S. military, who needs feminism?
Thank you, pale, strawberry-blonde woman. You have blazed our women’s trail. When we were staggering around in the dark of Dark Thirty with bad percentages, you delivered us into the light of supreme vengeance.
For the full text of Day’s article: mrzine.monthlyreview.org
Truthout.org emailed “The Second Amendment was Ratified to Preserve Slavery” by Thom Hartmann in which he details the real reason the Second Amendment was ratified and why it says “State” instead of “Country” (the Framers knew the difference). The reason, writes Hartmann, was to preserve the slave patrol militias in the southern states, which was necessary to get Virginia’s vote.
In the beginning, there were the militias. In the South, they were also called the “slave patrols” and they were regulated by the states. In Georgia, for example, laws were passed in 1755 and 1757 that required all plantation owners or their male white employees to be members of the Georgia Militia and for those armed militia members to make monthly inspections of the quarters of all slaves in the state and to watch out for slaves who may be planning uprisings.
And slave rebellions were keeping the slave patrols busy. By the time the Constitution was ratified, hundreds of slave uprisings had occurred across the South.
If the anti-slavery folks in the North had figured out a way to disband—or even move out of the state—those southern militias, the police state of the South, would collapse. And, similarly, if the North were to invite into military service the slaves of the South, then they could be emancipated, which would collapse the institution of slavery and the southern economic and social systems altogether. These two possibilities worried southerners like James Monroe, George Mason, and the southern Christian evangelical, Patrick Henry—who opposed slavery on principle—but also opposed freeing slaves.
The main concern was Article 1, Section 8 of the newly-proposed Constitution. At the ratifying convention in Virginia in 1788, Henry laid it out: “Let me here call your attention to that part [Article 1, Section 8 of the proposed Constitution].... By this, sir, you see that their control over our last and best defense is unlimited. If they neglect or refuse to discipline or arm our militia, they will be useless: the states can do neither...this power being exclusively given to Congress.... If the country be invaded, a state may go to war, but cannot suppress [slave] insurrections under this new Constitution. If there should happen an insurrection of slaves, the country cannot be said to be invaded. They cannot, therefore, suppress it without the interposition of Congress and Congress only under this new Constitution can call forth the militia.”
Why was that such a concern for Patrick Henry? “In this state,” he said, “there are two hundred and thirty-six thousand blacks and there are many in several other states. But there are few or none in the Northern States…. Patrick Henry was also convinced that the power over the various state militias given the federal government in the new Constitution could be used to strip the slave states of their slave-patrol militias. His first draft for what became the Second Amendment had said: “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed, and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country.” But Henry, Mason, and others wanted southern states to preserve their slave-patrol militias independent of the federal government. So Madison changed the word “country” to the word “state,” and redrafted the Second Amendment into today’s form.
Crackdown on Occupy
From email@example.com we received a Naomi Wolf article “How the FBI Coordinated the Crackdown on Occupy.” The crackdown—which involved violent arrests, group disruption, canister missiles to the skulls of protesters, people held in handcuffs so tight they were injured, people held in bondage till they were forced to wet or soil themselves—was coordinated with the big banks.
The document shows a network of coordinated DHS, FBI, police, regional fusion centers, and private-sector activity merged into one another—in some cases, bearing a single name, the Domestic Security Alliance Council. The documents show the cops and DHS working for and with banks to target, arrest, and politically disable peaceful citizens.
The documents, released after a long delay in the week between Christmas and New Years, show six American universities as sites where campus police funneled information about students involved with OWS to the FBI, with the Administrations knowledge and banks sat down with FBI officials to pool information about OWS protesters harvested by private security. There were even threats of the assassination of OWS leaders by sniper fire, which remain redacted and undisclosed to those American citizens in danger, contrary to standard FBI practice to inform the person concerned when there is a threat against a political leader.
FBI documents obtained by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund reveal that from its inception, the FBI treated the Occupy movement as a potential criminal and terrorist threat. The documents show that in Denver, Colorado, a branch of the FBI and a “Bank Fraud Working Group” met in November 2011 during the Occupy protests to surveil the group.
The fusion of the tracking of money and the suppression of dissent means that a huge area of vulnerability in civil society—people’s income streams and financial records—is firmly in the hands of the banks, which are now in the business of tracking our dissent.
Z Magazine Archive
AnnouncementsLABOR - May 1 is May Day. Workers of the world will celebrate the 124th anniversary of International Worker’s Day. Born out of a call for an 8-hour workday in the United States, this day is an opportunity for all workers to show their solidarity with one another, as well as to renew the call for labor rights.
FARM CONFERENCE - The Farm Conference on Community and Sustainability will be held May 24-26 in Summertown, TN, in partnership with the Fellowship of Intentional Communities. Tour green homes, see sustainable food production, learn about solar installations, alternative education, midwifery, and more.
Contact: Douglas@thefarmcommunity.com; http://www.thefarmcommunity.com/.
PALESTINE - The Conference of the Palestinian Shatat in North American will be held June 3-5 in Vancouver. The conference will examine the future of the Palestinian liberation movement.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.palestinianconference.org/.
LABOR - The Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s 45th annual conference will be held May 3-5, in Portland, OR. This year’s theme is Labor Under Attack: Learning from the Past and Preparing for the Future. A call for presentations, workshops and papers is currently underway.
Contact: PNLHA, 27920 68th Ave. East, Graham, WA 98338; 206-406-2604; PNLHA1@aol.com; http://www3.telus.net.
MARIJUANA - On the first Saturday of May marijuana legalization activists will hold informational and educational events, rallies and marches in over 300 cities around the world.
ECONOMICS - The Union For Radical Political Economics will hold its 39th annual conference May 9-11 in New York City.
RECLAIM THE DREAM - The 2013 Poor People’s Campaign & March from Baltimore to Washington D.C. will be May 11. Communities, schools and unions interested in participating are encouraged to contact the Baltimore People’s Assembly.
Contact: 410-500-2168; 410-218-4835; BaltimorePeoplesAssembly@gmail.com; Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Baltimore and the Baltimore Peoples Power Assembly, 2011 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218.
MOTHER’S DAY - The 17th Annual Mother’s Day Walk For Peace will be May 12th, in Dorchester, MA. The walk began in 1996 for families who had lost children to violence. The day has become a way for thousands of people to financially support the work of the Louis Brown Peace Institute.
Contact: http://www.ldbpeaceinstitute.org/; http://mothersdaywalk4peace.org/.
NATO 5 - An International Week of Solidarity with the NATO 5 has been called for May 16-21. Supports call on supporters to raise awareness of the NATO 5 and support funds for the defendants on the one-year anniversary of their preemptive arrests.
Contact: email@example.com; https://nato5support.wordpress.com.
MOUNTAINTOP - The 2013 Mountain Justice Summer Activist Training Camp will be held May 19-27 in Damascus, VA. It will be a week of workshops, field trips to view Mountain Top Removal coal mines, direct actions, and service project.
FEMINIST SCI-FI - The feminist science fiction convention WisCon 37 is scheduled for May 24-27 in Madison, WI.
Contact: WisCon, ? SF3, PO Box 1624, Madison, WI 53701; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.wiscon.info/.
ANARCHY FEST - A month-long Festival of Anarchy is scheduled for May in Montreal. The festival includes The Montreal Anarchist Bookfair (May 19-20).
Contact: http://www.anarchistbookfair.ca/; http://www.radicalmontreal.com/.
LABOR - The International Labor Rights Forum will present: Down the Supply Chain, Driving Corporate Accountability, on May 22 in Washington, DC. The Labor Rights Awards Ceremony and Reception will honor pioneers in supply chain worker organizing, working solidarity and international labor rights policy.
MULTICULTURE - The 26th annual National Conference on Race & Ethnicity in American Higher Education (NCORE) will take place May 28-June 1, in New Orleans.
Contact: SWCHRS, 3200 Marshall Avenue, Suite 290, Norman, OK 73072; 405-325-3694; email@example.com; www.ncore.ou.edu.
MEDIA - The 2013 Alliance for Community Media Annual Conference will be held May 29-31, in San Francisco, CA. Participants will include educators, community leaders, media professionals, journalists, nonprofit leaders, policymakers and students.
RADIO - The 38th Annual Community Radio Conference is schedule for May 29-June 1, in San Francisco, CA, with discussions and workshops.
Contact: 1101 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20004; 202-756-2268; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.nfcb.org/.
BRADLEY MANNING - On June 1, a rally will be held at Fort Meade in support of Bradley Manning.
BIKES - Bikes Not Bombs is holding its 24th annual Bike-A-Thon and Green Roots Festival in Boston, MA on June 3, with several bike rides scheduled, music, exhibitors and more.
Contact: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory St., Jamaica Plain, MA 02130; 617-522-0222; email@example.com; www.bikesnotbombs.org.
LEFT FORUM - The 2013 Left Forum will be held June 7-9, at Pace University in New York City.
Contact: 365 Fifth Avenue, CUNY Graduated Center, ? Sociology Dept., New York, NY 10016; http://www.leftforum.org/.
VEGAN FEST - Mad City Vegan Fest will be held in Madison, WI, June 8. The annual event features food, speakers, and exhibitors.
Contact: 122 State Street, Suite 405 B, Madison, WI 53701; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://veganfest.org/.
ADC CONFERENCE - The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) holds its annual conference June 13-16, in Washington, DC, with panel discussions and workshops on civil rights, media and other topics.
Contact: 1990 M Street, Suite 610, Washington, DC, 20036; 202-244-2990; email@example.com http://convention.adc.org/.
CUBA/SOCIALISM - A Cuban-North American Dialog on Socialist Renewal and Global Capitalist Crisis will be held in Havana, Cuba, June 16-30. There will be a 5 day Seminar at University of Havana, plus visits to a cooperative, urban garden, community development project, social research centers, and educational & medical institutions.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.globaljusticecenter.org/.
NETROOTS - The 8th Annual Netroots Nation conference will take place June 20-23 in San Jose, CA. The event features panels, trainings, networking, screenings, and keynotes.
Contact: 164 Robles Way, #276, Vallejo, CA 94591; email@example.com; http://www.netrootsnation.org/.
MEDIA - The 15th annual Allied Media Conference will be held June 20-23, in Detroit.
Contact: 4126 Third Street, Detroit, MI 48201; http://alliedmedia.org/.
GRASSROOTS - The United We Stand Festival will be hosted by Free & Equal, June 22 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The festival aims to reform the electoral process throughout the U.S.
SOCIALISM - The Socialism 2013 Conference is scheduled for June 27-30 in Chicago, featuring talks and panel discussions.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.socialismconference.org.
LITERACY - The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) will hold its conference July 12-13 in Los Angeles under the heading, Intersections: Teaching and Learning Across Media.
Contact: 10 Laurel Hill Drive, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003; http://namle.net/conference/.
IWW - The North American Work People’s College will take place July 12-16 at Mesaba Co-op Park in northern Minnesota. The event will bring together Wobblies from branches across the continent to learn new skills and build One Big Union.
PEACESTOCK - On July 13th, the 11th Annual Peacestock: A Gathering for Peace, will take place at Windbeam Farm in Hager City, WI. The event is a mixture of music, speakers and community for peace. Sponsored by Veterans for Peace.
Contact: Bill Habedank, 1913 Grandview Ave., Red Wing, MN 55066; 651-388-7733; email@example.com; http://www.peacestockvfp.org.
CHILDREN’S DEFENSE - July 15-19, join clergy, seminarians, Christian educators, young adult leaders and other faith-based advocates for children at CDF Haley Farm in Clinton, Tennessee, for five days of spiritual renewal, networking, movement building workshops, and continuing education about the urgent needs of children at the 19th annual Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.childrensdefense.org.
ACTIVIST CAMP - Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp will have sessions in July and August in Ben Lomond, CA; Portland, OR; Charlton, MA. YEA Camp is designed for activists 12-17 years old who want to make a difference in the world.
Contact: email@example.com; http://yeacamp.org/.
LA RAZA - The annual National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Conference is scheduled for July 18-19 in New Orleans, with workshops, presentations and panel discussions.
Contact: NCLR Headquarters Office, Raul Yzaguirre Building, 1126 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036; 202-785-1670; www.nclr.org.
LABOR - The Eastern Conference For Workplace Democracy: Growing Our Cooperatives, Growing Our Communities, will be held at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, July 26-28.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://east.usworker.coop/.
WOMEN/LYNNE STEWART- Radical Women is asking for support letters and cards to be sent to Lynne Stewart. Stewart is a civil rights attorney and political prisoner who is currently in jail. She has breast cancer and authorities have denied her request for transfer from her Texas prison to the New York City hospital where she received medical attention during a prior bout of breast cancer. Send messages and cards to: Lynne Stewart 53504-054, Federal Medical Center Carswell, P.O. Box 27137, Fort Worth, TX 76127.
Contact: 747 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109; 415-864-1278; RadicalWomenUS@gmail.com; http://lynnestewart.org/; http://www.radicalwomen.org/.
HAITI/WOMEN - Haiti’s government is considering a legal reform measure that would prohibit and punish all sexual assault, including marital rape. MADRE and the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict are launching a petition to raise international support for this push to address violence against women in Haiti.
Contact: 121 West 27th Street, #301, New York, NY 10001; 212-627-0444; email@example.com; http://www.madre.org.
SYRIA/MIDDLE EAST - The Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) is currently seeking funds to assist more than 200,000 refugees fleeing violence in Syria.
FOLK FESTIVAL - The Falcon Ridge Folk Festival will be held August 2-4, in the Berkshires, NY.
Contact: http://www.falconridgefolk.com/; firstname.lastname@example.org.
WAR RESISTERS - The War Resisters League will hold its 90th anniversary conference, Revolutionary Nonviolence: Building Bridges Across Generations and Communities, August 1-4, at Georgetown University. The event will focus on the U.S.’ long history of antimilitarism.
Contact: 339 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012; 212-228-0450; email@example.com; http://www.warresisters.org.
POPULAR ECONOMICS - The Center for Popular Economics is holding its 2013 Summer Institute August 4-9 at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA. No background in economics is needed for this intensive training. This year’s theme is, The Care Economy: Building a Just Economy with a Heart.
Contact: Center for Popular Economics, PO Box 785 Amherst, MA 01004; 413-545-0743; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.populareconomics.org.
VETERANS - Veterans for Peace is holding the 28th annual convention August 6-11 in Madison, WI. This year’s theme is, Power To The Peaceful.
DEMOCRACY - The Democracy Convention will take place August 7-11 in Madison, WI. The convention brings together nine conferences including topics such as media, education, defense, race, environment and others.
MEN - The 38th National Conference on Men & Masculinity: Forging Justice: Creating Safe, Equal and Accountable Communities, presented in partnership with HAVEN, will be held in Detroit, MI, August 8-10.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.nomas.org/.
OCCUPY - An Occupy National Gathering will be held in Kalamazoo, MI, August 21-25.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://occupynationalgathering.net/.
COMMUNITIES - The Communities Conference is a networking and learning opportunity for co-operative or communal lifestyles, with workshops, events and entertainment; scheduled for August 30-September 2 at the Twin Oaks Community in Louisa, Virginia.
LABOR DAY - The 29th annual Bread and Roses Festival, a celebration of the ethnic diversity and labor history of Lawrence, MA, will be held September 2, in honor of the 1912 Bread and Roses Strike. There will be music, dance, poetry, drama, ethnic food, historical demonstrations, walking & trolley tours.
Contact: PO Box 1137, Lawrence, MA 01842; 978-794-1655; http://www.breadandrosesheritage.org/.
OCCUPY WALL STREET - September 17 is the two-year anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Events are planned in New York City and worldwide.
TEACHERS - The 13th Annual Conference, “Teaching for Social Justice: The Politics of Pedagogy,” will be held October 12 in San Francisco, CA. The free event features workshops, resources, and free childcare.
Contact: 415-676-7844; email@example.com; http://www.t4sj.org/.
HAITI - International Action, which brings clean water and chlorinators to Haiti, seeks office space capable of housing up to six people and their office equipment.
Contact: Zach Bremer, Zbrehmer@haitiwater.org; 202-488-0735; http://www.haitiwater.org/.
MEDIA - The Union for Democratic Communications and Project Censored are sponsoring a joint conference on media democracy, media activism and social justice to be held November 1-3 at the University of San Francisco. Proposals for presentations, workshops and panels from activists and critical scholars are invited.