Archive for the Category »History «

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Raff Ellis: “The Bishop’s Curse”…

America is a wholly colonial creation of emigrants from all over the world, the American ideal view is one of a Camelot-like shining castle on the hill…if it wasn’t for all those pesky natives, darkies, Asians, Arabs and the clamoring poor washing up upon our shores.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Of course, when the mytho-conservative veneer is penetrated, there’s a base foundation that few are routinely taught. more…

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Massa & Tribal Politics…

After 22 yrs of federal prison (including 2 yrs of draconian home arrest), one might think I’d be grateful to be free. All I see is increasing poverty and political enslavement. Y’all call this freedom? We call it minimum-security…and growing worse by the day.

Maybe it takes a few years in prison to see the reality…a good dose of the Naked State without all the frills and propaganda will do that for ya.

At the very top of this concave-sided pyramid is less than 1/10th of 1% of the population living off of the impoverishment of the whole. more…

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People Patriots vs. Corporate Criminals…

The first national holiday celebrating America’s working class was observed on a Tuesday, September 5th, 1882. It became a federal holiday—Labor Day—in 1894 and is celebrated on the first Monday of September every year since.

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Few lessons are taught on the subject. It took 100 years of class war by gov’t and big business and thousands of deaths for the American working class to even get that far.

From the beginning of the Republic, the US justice system deemed workers who came together for the purpose of “raising wages,” were “criminal combinations,” an early form of conspiracy law.  Commonwealth vs. Pullis (1806). more…

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Cowboys & Indians…

Maybe it started with Cowboys & Indians. In the children’s game I always found myself playing the Indian side and rooting for the underdog. In some respects, I guess I just never “grew up.”

Bill Fletcher Jr., of the Black Commentator.com, published an interesting article of his recent trip with a labor delegation to North Africa and Palestine.

Routine press contact...

It brought back some poignant memories of my own time in the Middle East and East Africa back in 1969-74.

As a photog-journalist, I was credentialed with both Yassir Arafat’s Al Fatah armed-struggle organization in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan, and the Jewish Agency in Israel-Palestine, 1969. more…

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History & Social Consciousness…

Someone I am proud to call a friend, Hans Post, is fond of using the famous quote by George Santayana: “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Hans should know.

Corporatist choices (click to enlarge)...

In World War II, he was in the German Wehrmacht SS of the famed Skorzeny Kommando. (They were an independent command and radically different from the other murderous legions of SS.) more…

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In The Garden of Beasts…

Author Erik Larson has just done us a huge favor. He’s written and published a book, In The Garden of Beasts, about the American ambassador to Nazi Germany, 1933-38, William E. Dodd, who’s tenure paralleled Hitler’s rise to power.

Ambassador Dodd Family, 1933...

In some very basic respects, we have an excellent analogy between that history, some 75 years ago, and today. Perhaps we can learn some lessons… more…

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Ashes to Ashes; Stardust to Stardust…

Well, gosh oh gee whiz.  We’re all still here.  The world didn’t end May 21st.  Unfortunately, so are all the raptors.   I was looking forward to some peace and quiet on the planet…

But not to despair.  Ol’ Harold Camping assures the faithful that May 21st was an “invisible judgment day”; it happened, it’s just that the faithless don’t have a clue.  In any event, he insists, October 21st will be the end of the world!  Count on it. more…

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Social Revolution Sans Culottes…

You’d think that after more than 10,000 yrs of social evolution that people would get the idea that with great wealth and power comes great responsibility.

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You wouldn’t know it by examining the current crop of super-parasites riding the back of the dog-eat-dog corporatist system.
Maybe when the masters-of-the-universe like the Koch Bros can’t show their faces in public for fear of being spit upon or worse, then it will dawn on them what they’ve lost: Humanity. more…

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Democracy vs. Plutocratic Predators…

The American Revolution was a war fought against an aristocracy that was dominated by corporate predators; for one, the East India Company.

Thomas Jefferson...

King George III had no more control over them than does Barack Obama over the current crop of corporatists.  They still buy all the influence they need. more…

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Political Pathology…

I recall a conversation with a couple of prisoners whom I regarded as evil profiteers with no empathy for others—one of them a general contractor in for defrauding federal money slated for Katrina victims, and the other a Goldman Sachs-style executive in for even greater theft.

Few such profiteers have been incarcerated; afterall, it is their system.

As with other prisoners, they quickly learn that most inmates are perfectly normal persons.  However, they rarely quite get the social connect…the consciousness that most people are not driven to plunder society for their personal wealth, privilege and power. more…