Let’s talk about Transformation…

2003-04-03

Richard Moore

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From: Paul R. Bottis Sr. <•••@••.•••>
Date: Sat, 29 Mar 2003 18:41:53 EST
Subject: (no subject)
To: •••@••.•••

The world has never seen a movement of the magnitude of
the protests around the world in opposition to the
preemptive attack on a sovereign nation. The movement
has made alliances of those who have divergent
philosophies with long histories of Contending with
each other. I would submit there are logical reasons
for this phenomenon.

The most basic instinct in all of nature is that of
survival, the most basic dynamic of this is the
survival of self. An individual when faced with danger
will take whatever steps are necessary for their
survival. There is a second dynamic and that entails
the survival of ones family, when one finds that his
beloved family is in danger the individual will risk or
even lay down their life in deference to their own
survival. There is a third dynamic one that supersedes
family. An individual who perceives that his country is
in danger of extinction will leave their family take up
arms and be willing to lay down their life for the love
of country. A fourth dynamic rises above all the others
this dynamic is that there is the survival of the
species, if one perceives that their species is in
danger they will give it priority in all their actions
to preserve their species.

I believe that the people of the world have moved into
this fourth dynamic. They now have the perception built
upon logic, personal experiences and observations, that
there is a real impending danger to the existence of our
species. I believe that this is a movement that cannot
be stopped or stymied by those whose motives are
contrary to nature. The world does not exist for any
single nation, group, philosophical or political
persuasion. A new age of enlightenment that has no 
comparison in history.  

Paul R. Bottis Sr
http://www.madashellclub.com

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Dear Paul,

Thanks for your heartfelt expression.  It serves as an
excellent introduction to a topic I would like to focus
our attention on -- Transformation.

We cannot ignore updates on the illegal invasion of
Iraq, and I'll tend to send those to newslog.  On our
discussion lists, I'd like to continue the thread you
have so eloquently begun.

Yes the magnitude of the protests is unprecedented, and
that is one measure of the movement's significance. 
The magnitude tells us that there is a lot of outrage
out there, generating a lot of potential energy to
carry the movement further.  But it doesn't tell us
much about the direction the movement might take, or
what objectives it might seek to accomplish.

Another way to measure the movement's significance is
to look at the kind of ideas that are being expressed. 
Ideas such as yours, for example.  I've gotten other
messages which also share that intuition.  And I've also
been receiving some very interesting analytical pieces
of an unusually radical nature.  These analyses, which
are themselves part of the movement, tell us something
about the direction the movement might take, and the
scope of objectives that might emerge.  I'll be sharing
some of those pieces, but I wanted to first prepare
some context with this introductory posting.

---

Let's consider for a moment the nature of the regime's
provocation, which has given rise to the movement.  What
is unique about this provocation?  The US has been
invading sovereign nations for two centuries, and has
implemented regime changes hundreds of times.  Economic
gain has always been the reason, oil or otherwise, and
lying propaganda has always been part of the
operations.  Innocent people have always been killed in
the process.  None of that is new.

One thing that IS new is the number of people around
the world who are not fooled by the propaganda this
time.  Instead of just the 'usual suspects' (activists,
peaceniks, etc.), nearly EVERYONE I talk to on the
street thinks Bush is lying through his teeth. This
provides a nutritious 'culture' for the movement to
develop in.  It provides public sympathy, and it
encourages new activists to emerge and participate. 

Even more important, it introduces -- to a limited
degree -- the sense that the movement is the People As
A Whole, rather than being just another pressure group
at work. By contrast, recall that with the
Anti-Vietnam-War protests, the movement was always
weakened by the split between the generations, between
young and old.  If this sense of more universal
inclusion can be nurtured and developed, the potential 
for the movement will be greatly enhanced.

But why are fewer people fooled by the propaganda this
time?  I think that comes down to how blatant Washinton
is being. They're building their fire right on Main
Street, and they're pointing all the cameras at it. 
They're lying with impunity to the UN and they're
changing their story time and again right in front of
our eyes.  After making a big deal about how important
the UN was, they then proceeded to ignore its decision
and launch an aggressive war with no credible pretense
of international support.  In my gut, I believe they
are intentionally saying to us all, people and
governments alike, "OK, this is how it's going to be. 
I'm the boss now and what I say goes.  Give me any shit
and I'll blow your head off.  You turkeys can either do
something about it or you can shut up and do what your
told.".  It's like a scene from a gangster film.

Not everyone feels it in their gut the same way, but I
think some kind of gut feeling is there for most of us. 
I think perhaps we are seeing a loss of innocence of
historical proportions.  Consider the image Uncle Sam
has tried to maintain since the end of World War II,
and with some considerable success.  You know what I
mean -- Truth, Justice, and the American Way... 
Defeater of fascism, Champion of democracy, Beacon of
economic hope, Trusted mediator of trouble spots, etc. 
Many of us saw through this illusion a long time ago,
but for many of the world's people the illusion was
real right up until 9/11, and in fact the illusion was
temporarily enhanced by that event, due to all the
sympathy for the victims.

But now, as the Iraq episode develops, Uncle Sam is
revealed to all as the Naked Emperor, as the wolf who
has shed his sheep's clothing.  The world has lost it's
Champion of Justice... it has lost its illusion, part
of its innocence.   It's a bit like the the effect on
devout Catholics when all the pedophile priests were
uncovered.  That which was The Good is revealed as The
Evil. We all know that the US has been guiding the
course of world events since 1945, and we kind of hoped
they knew what they were doing.  Now we find that our
global leadership is not to be trusted.  We have lost
our anchor.  We are lost.  Where shall we turn?

As a consequence, more and more people are beginning to
realize that an anti-war movement is the wrong focus,
even though the war is the immediate provocation.  The
war is not really a new thing, but the blatant
arrogance of the wanna be New World Empire is new, and
is a dire threat to us all. Doing something about that
goes beyond the scope of earlier movements.  The World
Empire can only be undone by a major Transformation of
Society.  And that can only happen by some kind of
Transformation of Movement Effectiveness.  Hence the
name, Transformation, for this thread.

Let me close this initial posting by sharing a message
I received from Jan Slakov.  I know many of you
appreciate hearing from her. Her very personal,
emotional, activist perspective on the movement is
refreshing after all my theoretical stuff.  Jan is one
of those people who earnestly strives to Be The Change
in order bring about the change.  When transformation
happens, it will be spirits like hers that bring it to
pass.

best regards,
rkm

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Date: Sat, 29 Mar 2003 21:23:13 -0800
To: •••@••.•••
From: Jan Slakov <•••@••.•••>
Subject: a couple comments

Dear Richard,

I just read over your piece in reply to the guy who
doubts your conspiracy theory and I think your reply is
convincing. It's good to have on hand, for if ever I
feel a need for getting into that kind of argument with
someone. And it's good for me to read this kind of
stuff, because it is so mind-boggling for almost
everyone, me included, to see what debate there is,
which is obviously "real" feeling for those engaged in
it, as part of "missing the boat".

I guess I feel grateful for you to spell all  this
"conspiracy" stuff out partly because I want to free my
mind up to focus on something slightly different. Maybe
I put more of my energy into dealing with my huge
emotions, and I know many other people are dealing with
powerful emotions these days too and so I think I we
can help each other, by sharing our work.

...I guess it's like Bruna was talking about at our
retreat/workshop: how if we feel we have to do
everything needed to change the world, we soon feel
overwhelmed and burnt out. But when we network with
others, then we can be aware of all the different
things being done towards our goal and feel part of
their work too and see our own work as contributing to
it and so we all feel stronger.

These days I find I really go up and down emotionally.
Today happens to have been really good. A good vigil
(and I felt I contributed usefully to it) and then I
talked to a lot of people in the little town of Ganges
here; some really good discussion and I felt that I was
helping to bolster the spirits of others and they were
helping to bolster mine. I also spoke on the phone with
Sophie and James (who were into vigil stuff there,
organized by friends of mine) and it was very good to
feel connected to that too.

all the best (love and all other good wishes too!) Jan



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