Monday, January 23, 2012

Don't Vote. Revolt!

A friend told me that it's not so much the 1% that screw over the 99%, but more importantly it's the 20% that screw over the other 80%, which makes a lot of sense when you realize we live in a kiss-ass-corporate Plutarchy that rewards people for keeping the 1% where they are. You must know of the Peter Principle that states, "in a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence." So how about you do away with hierarchies? Enter the Occupy movement and organized anarchy.

The caveat is that the Peter principals screw up, but they tell people exactly what they want to hear. Enter Barack Obama. Obama quelled the uprising masses who had it with the Bush-ocracy, by telling you, "yes we can," plus "change." Except he continued the Bush policies of war, torture, Gitmo,
corporate welfare bailout, and added in the removal of due process from American law. The American police state, by way of Obama's signature, now has the power to arrest you and lock you away without due process. So much for upholding and defending the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic. This law makes liars out of the President, the Congress who passed it, and every military and police person who executes or upholds it. The U.S. is now officially a country run by sadistic murdering thugs.

And now you say it's an election year so lets look at the candidates. Are you kidding? Everyone but everyone knows damned well there is not one candidate, especially Obama, who will change a damned thing to stop the American Police State Corporate Welfare Plutarchy on its current course toward the fall of the American empire (which would actually be a good thing). So why bother watching the election media sideshow? You know all of them are lying sacks of human
waste. It matters not who gets elected. It will remain business as usual. The only course of salvation is to ignore and marginalize the politicians who champion the status quo of American Empirical Sadistic Repression of anyone who doesn't kiss up to the 1%. Don't bother to vote. Don't waste your time watching polls and debates or listening to talk shows about candidates. It is all subversion to keep you from thinking about the reality of the demise of what was once an American dream of democracy and freedom.

Maybe you think not to vote means letting the Republicans (or Democrats) win. So what? Progressives are quelled into complacency by Democrats like Obama who promise and talk a good game, and then make Bush proud. It would be better to let things demise with Republicans in charge which would cause a backlash and uprising. It has to get worse before it gets better. That's reality. Otherwise, you remain catatonic Wall Street wage slaves. Don't think for yourself. Better get to bed so you can keep on working for the man.

What you really need is media programming on alternatives to our government. Why are we watching these idiots with baited breath until election eve? No one cares anyway, except the ego-maniacal airbrushed politicians themselves and their benefactors on Wall Street. I'm not advocating an all out revolution or coup. I'm just saying we should marginalize our government and especially our so called "leaders" by ignoring them and finding alternative ways to live without them. They earn no respect. Ignore the ignorant idiots.

Imagine a world without money. Now don't go off half cocked thinking this is ludicrous. What's ludicrous is watching another debate where people cheer the annual systematic death of 45,000 Americans through denial of healthcare so that corporations can make a few extra bucks. What's ludicrous is listening to politicians promising the moon and stars and knowing all too well they will never deliver, nor could they if they wanted to. You know this is true. You know they are liars. So just stop and think for a moment. Why watch futile debates over futile elections?

Think about some alternatives to this screwed up society. I don't have answers. I have questions, I have a need to find out what can we all do to overcome this madness. Listening to another election is not the answer. You need debate to hash out and brainstorm about what else we can do, and not to choose between frick and frack for president. Politicians will not do anything to upset their money train. But upsetting the money train is exactly what is prescribed, and you know it.

You need radio and TV shows where people debate alternatives to our current government and our current society. You need programs where people talk about anarchy and how organized and successful it can be. You need programs where people talk about how a leaderless society can make decisions where you have the power to decide by consensus. You need talk about true democracy. You don't need to watch another police state election where protesters get their heads bashed in and idiots become rulers of the American Empire.

Imagine. Imagine a world without money. Imagine if people lived through shared resources, by helping each other out with professional courtesy, by trading services for services, goods for goods. You could call it barter. But that's really way too simplistic a description. It's more a concept of a shared resource society. To live without money, would deny Wall Street the power that money holds over you. Think about it. Perhaps increased social services for people in need. What you need government for is to provide housing, healthcare, food, clothing, shelter, education (not indoctrination), child care, jobs, a living wage. You need your government to guarantee minimal social, health, and financial security standards of life for all people.

You don't need them to guarantee that Wall Street makes exorbitant profits. The DOW is not a measure of America's wealth or success. It is a measure of the 1%'s wealth. Why are you a wage slave to the 1%? This is a feudal society. You need to find a way out. The news media agenda has been set by the 1% to have you waste your attention and energy arguing over Democrats vs. Republicans, which is nothing more than asking a prisoner to choose between a good cop and a bad cop. You need to get out of jail. Wake up.

Don't vote. Revolt!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thoughts on The Occupy Movement

I’d like to point out something here I’ve been thinking about. I know, it’s a dangerous thing for me to be doing. But...
I’ve been thinking that historically the occupy movement is really nothing different than what’s been done. One revolution after another and historically it seems to always go the same way. The revolutionaries get out into the streets, become exposed to the powers who then beat them down. We see this again now with Occupy being evicted, arrested, beaten and basically tortured to submission by the American police state.

So, what’s different this time? Technology? The internet? Live streaming? I guess all that is something. But I submit that the real power is with words and ideas (the graffiti). Not with confrontation and getting your heads bashed in. I’ve said before, stop using banks, stop using oil, drop direct deposit. Even doing it just a little bit would go a long way if enough participate.

So I’m reluctant to get out in the street because I don’t want to be on the Gestapo hit list. Yet I’ll do it on occasion. But really, I keep thinking what’s the point? Real change has to be organic and has to be critical mass. I like the graffiti.  But there are a lot of ideas there. How to implement them effectively. I think there needs to be a lot more thought about what we do before we do it. Because so far, I don’t see a lot of point to what’s being done. Yeah, a few small victories (and defeats) here and there when we occupy this or that. But really. We have technology. We have the ability to mass communicate. So far the internet is a true democracy. We have some tools here we aren’t using well enough yet.

Think in terms of Facebook. One guy codes up a storm of social networking and becomes the richest kid in history. We could do something  just as dramatic. Not necessarily for money but for the movement. We need some ideas here. What could there be to make it happen? In your wildest dreams, if you had all the resources in the world, what would you do? What could we do? Yeah, its happening to a point with the occupy streams and so on. But there's got to be something bigger and better out there we haven't thought of yet.

MAY 1968 GRAFFITI: French Political Vandalism

By Esteban Gil
In the decor of the spectacle, the eye meets only things and their prices.
Commute, work, commute, sleep . . .
Meanwhile everyone wants to breathe and nobody can and many say, “We will breathe later.”
And most of them don’t die because they are already dead.
Boredom is counterrevolutionary.
We don’t want a world where the guarantee of not dying
of starvation brings the risk of dying of boredom.
We want to live.
Don’t beg for the right to live — take it.
In a society that has abolished every kind of adventure
the only adventure that remains is to abolish the society.
The liberation of humanity is all or nothing.
Those who make revolutions half way only dig their own graves.
No replastering, the structure is rotten.
Masochism today takes the form of reformism.
Reform my ass.
The revolution is incredible because it’s really happening.
I came, I saw, I was won over.
Run, comrade, the old world is behind you!
If we only have enough time . . .
In any case, no regrets!
Already ten days of happiness.
Live in the moment.
Comrades, if everyone did like us . . .
We will ask nothing. We will demand nothing. We will take, occupy.
Down with the state.
When the National Assembly becomes a bourgeois theater,
all the bourgeois theaters should be turned into national assemblies.
[Written above the entrance of the occupied Odéon Theater]
Referendum: whether we vote yes or no, it turns us into suckers.
It’s painful to submit to our bosses; it’s even more stupid to choose them.
Let’s not change bosses, let’s change life.
Don’t liberate me — I’ll take care of that.
I’m not a servant of the people (much less of their self-appointed leaders).
Let the people serve themselves.
Abolish class society.
Nature created neither servants nor masters. I want neither to rule nor to be ruled.
We will have good masters as soon as everyone is their own.
“In revolution there are two types of people:
those who make it and those who profit from it.”
Warning: ambitious careerists may now be disguised as “progressives.”
Don’t be taken in by the politicos and their filthy demagogy. We must rely on ourselves.
Socialism without freedom is a barracks.
All power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.
We want structures that serve people, not people serving structures.
The revolution doesn’t belong to the committees, it’s yours.
Politics is in the streets.
Barricades close the streets but open the way.
Our hope can come only from the hopeless.
A proletarian is someone who has no power over his life and knows it.
Never work.
People who work get bored when they don’t work.
People who don’t work never get bored.
Workers of all countries, enjoy!
Since 1936 I have fought for wage increases.
My father before me fought for wage increases.
Now I have a TV, a fridge, a Volkswagen.
Yet my whole life has been a drag.
Don’t negotiate with the bosses. Abolish them.
The boss needs you, you don’t need the boss.
By stopping our machines together we will demonstrate their weakness.
Occupy the factories.
Power to the workers councils.
(an enragé)
Power to the enragés councils.
(a worker)
Worker: You may be only 25 years old, but your union dates from the last century.
Labor unions are whorehouses.
Comrades, let’s lynch Séguy!
[Georges Séguy: head bureaucrat of the Communist Party-dominated labor union]
Please leave the Communist Party as clean on leaving it as you would like to find it on entering.
Stalinists, your children are with us!
Man is neither Rousseau’s noble savage nor the Church’s or La Rochefoucauld’s depraved sinner.
He is violent when oppressed, gentle when free.
Conflict is the origin of everything.
If we have to resort to force, don’t sit on the fence.
Be cruel.
Humanity won’t be happy till the last capitalist is hung
with the guts of the last bureaucrat.
When the last sociologist has been hung with the guts of
the last bureaucrat, will we still have “problems”?
The passion of destruction is a creative joy.
A single nonrevolutionary weekend is infinitely more bloody than a month of total revolution.
The tears of philistines are the nectar of the gods.
This concerns everyone.
We are all German Jews.
We refuse to be highrised, diplomaed, licensed, inventoried, registered, indoctrinated,
suburbanized, sermonized, beaten, telemanipulated, gassed, booked.
We are all “undesirables.”
We must remain “unadapted.”
The forest precedes man, the desert follows him.
Under the paving stones, the beach.
Concrete breeds apathy.
Coming soon to this location: charming ruins.
Beautiful, maybe not, but O how charming: life versus survival.
“My aim is to agitate and disturb people. I’m not selling bread, I’m selling yeast.”
Conservatism is a synonym for rottenness and ugliness.
You are hollow.
You will end up dying of comfort.
Hide yourself, object!
No to coat-and-tie revolution.
A revolution that requires us to sacrifice ourselves for it is Papa’s revolution.
Revolution ceases to be the moment it calls for self-sacrifice.
The prospect of finding pleasure tomorrow will never compensate for today’s boredom.
When people notice they are bored, they stop being bored.
Happiness is a new idea.
Live without dead time.
Those who talk about revolution and class struggle without referring
to everyday reality have a corpse in their mouth.
Culture is an inversion of life.
Poetry is in the streets.
The most beautiful sculpture is a paving stone thrown at a cop’s head.
Art is dead, don’t consume its corpse.
Art is dead, let’s liberate our everyday life.
Art is dead, Godard can’t change that.
Godard: the supreme Swiss Maoist jerk.
Permanent cultural vibration.
We want a wild and ephemeral music.
We propose a fundamental regeneration:
concert strikes,
sound gatherings with collective investigation.
Abolish copyrights: sound structures belong to everyone.
Anarchy is me.
Revolution, I love you.
Down with the abstract, long live the ephemeral.
(Marxist-Pessimist Youth)
Don’t consume Marx, live him.
I’m a Groucho Marxist.
I take my desires for reality because I believe in the reality of my desires.
Desiring reality is great! Realizing your desires is even better!
Practice wishful thinking.
I declare a permanent state of happiness.
Be realistic, demand the impossible.
Power to the imagination.
Those who lack imagination cannot imagine what is lacking.
Imagination is not a gift, it must be conquered.
Action must not be a reaction, but a creation.
Action enables us to overcome divisions and find solutions.
Exaggeration is the beginning of invention.
The enemy of movement is skepticism. Everything that has been realized
comes from dynamism, which comes from spontaneity.
Here, we spontane.
“You must bear a chaos inside you to give birth to a dancing star.”
Chance must be systematically explored.
Alcohol kills. Take LSD.
Unbutton your mind as often as your fly.
“Every view of things that is not strange is false.”
Life is elsewhere.
Forget everything you’ve been taught. Start by dreaming.
Form dream committees.
Dare! This word contains all the politics of the present moment.
Arise, ye wretched of the university.
Students are jerks.
The student’s susceptibility to recruitment as a militant for
any cause is a sufficient demonstration of his real impotence.
(enragé women)
Professors, you make us grow old.
Terminate the university.
Rape your Alma Mater.
What if we burned the Sorbonne?
Professors, you are as senile as your culture, your modernism
is nothing but the modernization of the police.
We refuse the role assigned to us: we will not be trained as police dogs.
We don’t want to be the watchdogs or servants of capitalism.
Exams = servility, social promotion, hierarchical society.
When examined, answer with questions.
Insolence is the new revolutionary weapon.
Every teacher is taught, everyone taught teaches.
The Old Mole of history seems to be splendidly undermining the Sorbonne.
(telegram from Marx, 13 May 1968)
Thought that stagnates rots.
To call in question the society you “live” in, you must first
be capable of calling yourself in question.
Take revolution seriously, but don’t take yourself seriously.
The walls have ears. Your ears have walls.
Making revolution also means breaking our internal chains.
A cop sleeps inside each one of us. We must kill him.
Drive the cop out of your head.
Religion is the ultimate con.
Neither God nor master.
If God existed it would be necessary to abolish him.
Can you believe that some people are still Christians?
Down with the toad of Nazareth.
How can you think freely in the shadow of a chapel?
We want a place to piss, not a place to pray.
I suspect God of being a leftist intellectual.
The bourgeoisie has no other pleasure than to degrade all pleasures.
Going through the motions kills the emotions.
Struggle against the emotional fixations that paralyze our potentials.
(Committee of Women on the Path of Liberation)
Constraints imposed on pleasure incite the pleasure of living without constraints.
The more I make love, the more I want to make revolution.
The more I make revolution, the more I want to make love.
SEX: It’s okay, says Mao, as long as you don’t do it too often.
Comrades, 5 hours of sleep a day is indispensable:
we need you for the revolution.
Embrace your love without dropping your guard.
I love you!!! Oh, say it with paving stones!!!
I’m coming in the paving stones.
Total orgasm.
Comrades, people are making love in the Poli Sci classrooms, not only in the fields.
Revolutionary women are more beautiful.
Zelda, I love you! Down with work!
The young make love, the old make obscene gestures.
Make love, not war.
Whoever speaks of love destroys love.
Down with consumer society.
The more you consume, the less you live.
Commodities are the opium of the people.
Burn commodities.
You can’t buy happiness. Steal it.
See Nanterre and live. Die in Naples with Club Med.
Are you a consumer or a participant?
To be free in 1968 means to participate.
I participate.
You participate.
He participates.
We participate.
They profit. 
The golden age was the age when gold didn’t reign.
“The cause of all wars, riots and injustices is the existence of property.”
(St. Augustine)
Happiness is hanging your landlord.
Millionaires of the world unite. The wind is turning.
The economy is wounded — I hope it dies!
How sad to love money.
You too can steal.
“Amnesty: An act in which the rulers pardon the injustices they have committed.”
(Ambrose Bierce)
[The definition in Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary is actually: “Amnesty: The state’s
magnanimity to those offenders whom it would be too expensive to punish.”]

Abolish alienation.
Obedience begins with consciousness;
consciousness begins with disobedience.
First, disobey; then write on the walls.
(Law of 10 May 1968)
I don’t like to write on walls.
Write everywhere.
Before writing, learn to think.
I don’t know how to write but I would like to say beautiful things and I don’t know how.
I don’t have time to write!!!
I have something to say but I don’t know what.
Freedom is the right to silence.
Long live communication, down with telecommunication.
You, my comrade, you whom I was unaware of amid the tumult,
you who are throttled, afraid, suffocated — come, talk to us.
Talk to your neighbors.
Look in front of you!!!
Help with cleanup, there are no maids here.
Revolution is an INITIATIVE.
Speechmaking is counterrevolutionary.
Comrades, stop applauding, the spectacle is everywhere.
Don’t get caught up in the spectacle of opposition. Oppose the spectacle.
Down with spectacle-commodity society.
Down with journalists and those who cater to them.
Only the truth is revolutionary.
No forbidding allowed.
Freedom is the crime that contains all crimes. It is our ultimate weapon.
The freedom of others extends mine infinitely.
No freedom for the enemies of freedom.
Free our comrades.
Open the gates of the asylums, prisons and other faculties.
Open the windows of your heart.
To hell with boundaries.
You can no longer sleep quietly once you’ve suddenly opened your eyes.

The future will only contain what we put into it now.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

KPFK and Pacifica: A Strong Independent Media

by Dr. Marc Sapir
Today KPFA-Pacifica is growing and thriving: Whose Radio Station? Whose Radio Network? We have to let communities in resistance speak for themselves through their own representatives. Do not recall Tracy Rosenberg. This recall is aimed at undermining KPFA’s and Pacifica network’s forward progress!!!

For the first time in 4 years radio station KPFA and its parent Foundation (Pacifica) are financially above water, new programming here and around the U.S. is bringing in new communities on the air, new voices of resistance, and new listeners from minority and other impacted communities. The morale of the unpaid staff majority at KPFA (150 strong)—many of whom have long felt ignored and even belittled by old timers and past managers--has improved under interim managers. The future for the entire Network’s growth—due in part to the addition of about 50 new affiliate stations around the U.S.-- is looking brighter. Just one year ago the auditor of the Pacifica books indicated that the Pacifica Foundation was in serious danger of financial collapse by the end of 2011. Here is an excerpt from his report:
"For the past three years the Foundation has sustained losses of $433,161, $2,701,432, and $1,974,849 for the years ended September 30, 2008, 2009, and 2010 totaling $5,102,442. Also during this three year period working capital has decreased from $2,835,309 at September 30, 2007 to a deficit of $(810,528) at September 30, 2010. These conditions and events have given rise to a substantial doubt about the Foundation's ability to meet its obligations as they become due without substantial disposition of assets outside the ordinary course of operations, or restructuring of debt, or externally forced revisions of its operations or similar actions."
Now, today, KPFA and Pacifica have rectified their deficits, slowly improved their listener based income and are in positive cash flow as well. On the air there is better representation of the Latino community’s issues (with weekly volunteer programmer Andres Soto in the morning). There is better representation of the African American youth movements (because JR Valrey and Davey D are giving more hours to the morning mix and other shows and specials and collaborations with other programmers). There is a restoration of the Poor News Network--that past management had harassed and zapped--and in a more prime time drive time weekly morning slot with excellent professional quality work by their poverty-based program staff. There have been more specials and more out on the street coverage of the Occupy Movement by Mitch Jeserich and others in part due to the supportive encouragement and collaboration by acting Station Manager Andrew Phillips and Program Director Carrie Core. In the midst of the world crisis, the Arab Spring and the Occupy Movement many people and more youth are tuning in anew to KPFA because that is where the action and the whole story is being covered from the ground up.

The organic changes that underpin this rapid turn-around at KPFA-Pacifica, were resisted tooth and nail by some folks who fabricated an anti-labor union-busting narrative against Pacifica leaders even before the beginning of any program changes locally had started. Long unhappy with the new by-laws giving a greater role to unpaid staff and listeners, they openly advocated that the Pacifica Network be broken up and that they would take control of KPFA in support of the small core paid staff group if they could achieve the collapse of Pacifica and its court mandated by-laws.
Having failed to break up Pacifica, having failed to make Pacifica’s director look like a union-busting corporate CEO, having failed to capture control of the national board, this group now tests the loyalty of their listener base to their narrative with this recall effort against Tracy Rosenberg, treasurer of the National Board (an elected KPFA station Board member). As their high cost mailing to listeners attests, a vote to recall Tracy Rosenberg is in the offing.

Much of the past year, the Save KPFA group and key staff supporters worked divisively on the air to direct listeners to and gain adherents to two unattributed and unvetted and not fact based web sites (Save KPFA and KPFA worker). Their anonymous articles maintain a constant stream of hostility and negativity toward various perceived enemies like the elected Pacifica National Board and Pacifica Executive Director Arlene Englehardt, and now Tracy Rosenberg. Because they have regular contact with so many KPFA listeners through their web site and e-lists, the outcome of this recall is not at all clear at this time. The recall effort gathered signatures in large part by using these web sites whose contents are so scurrilous that no organization or individual takes credit for the content. Neither the CWA Union nor the organization known as Concerned Listeners/Save KPFA will take any public responsibility for information in the articles posted on these web sites. And there is no way to contest disinformation or misinformation to those listeners who trust the web sites.

There are two reasons why a resounding defeat of this recall is important: First, it has become a measure of whether the CL/Save KPFA and CWA core paid staff can count on the uncritical loyalty of followers deceived by a fear-based narrative about Pacifica representing an imminent danger to KPFA. With Save KPFA holding a majority on the Board, if this misplaced effort gains the support of most of the voters they will likely use that as a sign of public support to intensify their efforts to tear down the Pacifica Foundation which could mean an end to the vital independent national radio network-building that is now taking place with measurable success. As they have failed once, they may again not succeed, but growth and harmony for movements in resistance such as ours are hard enough goals without people throwing in monkey wrenches. Secondly, the role of Rosenberg has not been trivial. Tracy is not a pushover. She is a fighter for what she believes in, as her leadership of an important non-profit (Media Alliance) and her excellent work as Pacifica Treasurer have shown, even in the face of withering criticism by the CL-Save KPFA group. The tactics used against her to try to undermine her credibility would cause some to quit trying to do the right thing, but she hasn’t stopped. For example, they invited her to the on-air Board Program where unbeknownst to her she would be faced with a prearranged attack tape recording and not permitted to respond to it. When Tracy objected to being set up that way the moderator made it appear that she was disrupting the program.

No individual is indispensable to any social movement, but some leaders are harder to intimidate than others. Tracy is one of these. So too are the current managers—Arlene at Pacifica and Andrew at KPFA who have been harassed almost daily the year long. Because of the contentious atmosphere, presently, almost no independent leftist leaders in the Bay Area not aligned with the current Board majority have considered running for the station board. I realize that no one faction is to blame for the years of bitter acrimony that have accrued there, but I think that the recall effort perpetuates this problem and so it must be turned back. Moreover, the recall effort, being based in easily refutable distortions of Tracy’s role and work, is a spike through the heart of efforts and hopes to see the station’s governing board become a more amicable collaborative and collective working body that can actually improve our independent media source that the Bay Area needs and depends upon.

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