wendydavis

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A Folk-rap-rock Police State Opera for Ferguson & beyond (with libretto)

By: wendydavis Wednesday August 20, 2014 10:10 am

We all must be hearing music when witnessing militarized police assassinations and crackdowns on protests, journalists, and dissidents of any flavor.  Here are some of mine. Were I a victim of the same rather than an observer, they might be different; who can say?  What do you hear? 

And let us please, not forget Jackson State, two killed and twelve others shot by National Guard and many other ‘security agencies’ two days later; few were even aware of it.  LA 1992 after the Rodney King verdict, 50 dead, 2000 injured before it was over.  Detroit ’67, Watts ’65, Harlem ’64…and the beat goes on.  But it must stop.

#TWIBnation (This Week in Blackness, apparently), one of the few black journalist organizations on the ground in Ferguson.  Warning: it’s hideous, but all sound, no video.  You may be feelin’ this afterward:

Seen on Twitter:

 “There’s a reason you separate military and the police. One fights the enemies of the state, the other serves and protects the people. When the military becomes both, then the enemies of the state tend to become the people.”

~ Commander William Adama (Battlestar Galactica)

And close to: “Why do white people keep telling us how we should act in the face of all this racist shit?”

 

f©ck the police, f©ck the system, indeed

By: wendydavis Thursday August 14, 2014 9:34 am

DS Wright has covered the war on citizens citizen assemblies and the press in Ferguson, MO here, so I’ll be able to skip that for the most part.  His commentariat have brought many useful and provocative links, as well.

Please add what you saw, either through following the LiveStreams, or #Ferguson or related accounts.  At some national reporters were on the scene, some arrested for filming the militarized police, some pepper-sprayed and shot with rubber bullets.  Let’s hope that their personal experiences will translate into wider coverage of what citizens are up against: a fascist police state run amok, avoiding making themselves the story, eh?  And let’s hope that their collective reporting contextualizes the larger issues, as in Colonization 2.0 and the increased use of Defense Department military weapons, armored vehicles, sound cannons, etc., killing citizens without due process with overwhelming impunity, as well as the following.

The Real News did an interview with Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report yesterday: “Understanding the Ferguson Uprising in the Context of Mass Incarceration

The transcript can be found here.

Sheer insanity: US & NATO fomenting war with Russia

By: wendydavis Tuesday August 12, 2014 8:13 am

Or: Johnny won’t come marching home from nuclear war

NATO Secretary General Press Point – Kiev, Ukraine, 07 August 2014

Foghy presses home the point that the new meme is: ‘Our allies and partners’, meaning probable fast-tracking of Ukraine into their organization, and ‘defending’ any of the periphery nations as ‘back-door members.  They are all being urged to increase their military budgets, of course: Because Russia.  (And cuz war is a sincerely profitable racket, but: Shhhhhh.)

And yes, Foghy, the ‘advisors’ are already there, as likely have been boatloads of CIA and Special Ops; the equipment (called ‘non-lethal’ has arrived, as well).

Let’s see what’s going on in the Black Sea (Lithuania, Romania, joint operations with Turkey, Tweets Galore!:

Is Brussels in thrall to the Empire of Chaos (h/t: Pepe Escobar) as the EU nations are?  So many carrots, so many sticks…

Psycho-spiritual health break: Spectacular ISS pics of Sunday’s supermoon

By: wendydavis Sunday August 10, 2014 1:44 pm

Yes, every day, war and more war and calumny, suffering and privation…for me, that can wait until tomorrow, For tonight, may we stop and look skyward, and enjoy the photos of this big blue ball provided by Russian Cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev, and gain some measure of peace and perspective.

May we also contemplate what ShootThatArrow is wont to say so poignantly, It didn’t have to be this way.” From RT:

‘A Russian cosmonaut has posted stunning pictures of the supermoon, giving a preview to one of the most dramatic space events of the year. On Sunday, stargazers will be able to view the biggest and brightest moon in 20 years.

Oleg Artemyev posted a series of amazing images depicting the giant moon’s journey orbiting the Earth on his Twitter account, calling it “the supermoon moonset.”

The images give a glimpse into one of the most anticipated and exciting astronomical events of the year, when the moon is at its fullest.

This Sunday’s supermoon, known as “Perigee,” will be the second and largest of the three to appear this summer. The moon on Sunday is calculated to be about 50,000 kilometers closer to Earth than when it is at its furthest point, known as “Apogee.” It will make the moon appear 14 percent closer and 30 percent brighter than full moons usually appear.

The previous supermoon was seen on July 12, resulting in spectacular images and prompting millions to crane their necks to see the phenomenon. The last of the three moons this year is expected to appear on September 9.

“This is the supermoon, the ‘superest’ supermoon,” NASA scientist Noah Petro told Space.com during a video interview. “The two full moons around this one are also close, but not the closest. By the strict definition of a supermoon or a perigee moon this one this weekend is the closest full moon of the year. The other ones are spectacular but not quite as close as this one.”‘

Read more here to see the moon photos larger, and/or watch a NASA video on this week’s Perseids Meteor Shower.   (I’ll toss in a few other photos of the earth he took; they’re breathtaking. Here’s his Twitter account for more.  Oooh; and RT has added additional breathtaking moon photos since I’d last looked.

A Collection of WikiCables on Israel & Gaza

By: wendydavis Wednesday August 6, 2014 10:06 am

(This is by way of a PSA, and I doubt I’ll be able to come back to the thread since we have our daughter and her three chirren here for a week.  So please talk to one another…and may it be that we don’t need them in the future.)

This is the Storify slideshow WikiLeaks posted four days ago of 51 (and counting): #Gaza related WikiLeaks cables mentioned in the past 48 hours | Storify.  I went back through their Twitter account to get the links to some of them for your use later as you might need them for evidence when you’re engaged in (ahem) discussions with the confused apologists for raining down bombs and missiles on Gaza.  If I understand it, one can’t use the slideshow in that way.

Over 1100 dead, 3500 wounded in Ukraine Civil War; Drumbeats for War Against Russia Intensifying

By: wendydavis Monday July 28, 2014 9:52 am

From RT:

Some 1,129 people have been killed and nearly 3,500 wounded in eastern Ukraine since the start of the Kiev’s military operation in April, according to UN estimates.

The report also states that these are the minimum casualty toll estimates by the UN monitoring mission and WHO.

The report says that the cause of the rising death toll is intensified artillery shelling of the civilian residential areas and the so-called “collateral damage” of the armed actions in the heavily-populated areas.

Also, 100,000 people were forcibly displaced in eastern Ukraine.

The Kiev authorities are using heavy weaponry and artillery in strikes on residential areas, while the armed rebels are firing back, the report states.’

On Friday, Human Rights Watch alleged that Kiev is using indiscriminate Grad missiles to attack densely populated areas in Donetsk, which violates international humanitarian law, and also blames the militia for taking cover in the same areas.

This admonition comes from the same HRW that blamed hideous deeds by those groups that had staged a coup against Hugo Chavez in Venezuela and have attempted to overthrow Maduro…on the Maduro government.  It is the same organization that received a letter from several Nobel peace prize laureates, and 100 human rights activists, and scholars, urging independence from the US government, so you be the judge.  But from all I’ve read, those folks fleeing the carnage headed for Russia.

The bombing and shelling of citizens in Eastern Ukraine has been bloody and ugly; people have been burned alive in buildings, whether under the uniforms of the Ukrainian military, or Right Sektor/Svoboda nazis.  No matter how you come down on Lugansk and Donetsk declaring their independence from Ukraine, Kyiv’s many atrocities should be tied as war crimes.  But of course they won’t, not least because the US and several deep state NGOs full back, and partially funds these fiends in the name of Democracy for some™, apparently.

From Veterans Today’s Jim Dean, bless his heart: ‘The People of Donbass have something to say: “Why?  What did we do to you to deserve this, America and EU?”

The general use of artillery and bombing attacks on civilian areas has been met with total silence by the Kiev Junta’s Western allies. It gets even worse for the towns captured from the East Ukraine resistance, atrocities and summary executions have take place.

Even the UN says nothing, not even about investigation or having monitors with the Kiev units to stay on top of what they are doing. The Oligarch funded units, formal terror brigades, are fighting behind a Western approved “anti-terror” smokescreen. This stain will never wash off, of them or us, as it has not on all those who have preceded those doing it now.

Videos showing the results of these bloody deeds abound, but are difficult to verify, given language barriers, questions of dates, and the potential for propaganda. The Saker has a team of translators dubbing in English for many of them, and I do hope they are straight up with their translations; given what we’ve seen live-streamed, I tend to credit their translations.

RT’s ‘250 civilians killed in Ukraine’s Lugansk during last two months – OSCE’ highlights the organization’s death toll numbers from June and July, and provides videos that require warnings for the brutal carnage depicted. My guess is that again, actual numbers were higher.

Clearly the teeth-gnashing rhetoric from the US State Department, Obama himself, and the loudest neo-cons in Congress has blamed Russia for the downing of MH 17 from the start, but have provided no evidence, just anonymous ‘intel reports.’

This is the State Department flack Marie Harf on July 22, fielding questions as to the veracity of those claims, and especially as opposed to statements made by Putin and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov.  The dialogue is funny on its own, but this op-ed from washingtonsblog.com has great art to go along with it. He characterizes it this way:

A Magnificent Antidote: New Recordings from Playing For Change

By: wendydavis Friday July 18, 2014 2:46 pm
Manu Chao in concert, playing an electric guitar

Manu Chao: Musicians “Playing For Change.”

Dark days are upon us in far too many directions, both domestically and globally: from ethnic cleansings to massive poverty, hunger, no access to clean water, lack of health care, wars of choice and Empire…and more. And no, it didn’t have to be this way, and our task now seems to be to find a way through the morass, both individually and collectively, beginning anew when we falter and succumb to lassitude or depression, or even submerging into the dark and failing to appreciate what beauty and glories are available.  Camus called it a possible sin against life to do so.

If you live where you’re able to see the night sky, when it’s dark enough, go outdoors and look to the south toward the horizon, and gaze at the constellation Scorpio, a giant lazy J of a fishhook laid out before you; to the east of her is Sagittarius, and the Big Dipper is overhead and a bit to the north. The Milky Way is starting to rise again, and although faint just now, allows us to see the edge of our own galaxy, and she wondrously displays to us what small specks of stardust we actually are.

This is the ‘About’ page describing the Playing for Change movement that was created to inspire and connect the world through music, and to break down boundaries and overcome distances between people. Mark Johnson, co-founder. (and h/t hotflashcarol for the new ones) The global Indigenous have foretold that humanity is on the cusp of an evolutionary leap toward higher purpose and consciousness, and most days I believe that they are right, and that as more of us see and know the dark, we will collectively offer one another reaching hands, and head toward the light. In concert, we are powerful, ‘they’ are few, and when we cooperate and empathize with one another, love each other as a choice, we can and must build a better, more just world. Song and dance and the celebration of life is key, as are art, poetry, and story-telling, especially our own stories.

Enjoy the music, and the folk at PFC advise: play it loud, boogie as you can!

La Bamba’, featuring David Hidalgo and Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos, Andres Calamaro and La Marisoul, Baby-Black Ndome from Kinsha.  You’ll fall in love with Mariosoul and Baby-Black, the harp player…and the children, I guaran-damn-tee it.

Considering Love’s Importance to pre-Revolution & Creating a Better World

By: wendydavis Thursday July 10, 2014 2:05 pm

Occupy Love, Hella Love Oakland March (23 of 24)On May 19 Occupy activist Cecily McMillan was sentenced to serve ninety days in prison for being sexually assaulted by a cop at Zuccotti Park.  That day, her team left a message at the justiceforcecilly.com website, and it reads in part:

‘The Occupy Wall Street Movement has been a catalyst for social and economic change. But, while we claim to be “the 99%,” building a movement that truly represents the diversity and strength of the people will require a principled approach in our activism centered around a love ethic. bell hooks describes the love ethic in All About Love as:

The will to one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth. Love is as love does, Love is an act of will—namely, both an intention and an action. Will also implies choice. We do not have to love. We choose to love.

Allow me to submit that it’s possible and even more important to our present struggle, to choose to love people we don’t even like, or are our enemies, and that’s where it gets seriously hard.  Sages and prophets have explained many times over that the best love is essentially compassionate love, the sort in which we extend ourselves by choice in order to further not only the spiritual growth of others, but ourselves in the process.  Active, not passive love.  Martin Luther King spoke of it often:

‘Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.’

And it may just be one of the hardest choices to actuate ever, along with taming our own egos, but they may also be somewhat related.  Some liken higher love to conferring a moment of grace on another, or the glorious way Kabir does.

‘The flute of interior time is played whether we hear it or not.
What we mean by “love” is its sound coming in.
When love hits the farthest edge of excess, it reaches wisdom.
And the fragrance of the knowledge!
It penetrates our thick bodies,
it goes through walls.
Its network of notes has a structure as if a million suns were arranged inside.
The tune has truth in it.
Where else have you heard a sound like this?’

~  Kabir, Indian mystic