Bcc: contributors ============================================================================ From: Paul Isaacs <•••@••.•••> To: "Richard K. Moore" <•••@••.•••> Date: Sat, 01 Jun 2002 00:11:35 -0500 Subject: Re: rkm ruminations... rkm > I need some inputs about what we should be doing on this list... Let's do something more creative. Suggestions welcome. Richard, We all know that a teeter-totter is most unstable when it is near its balance point. Rapid changes are possible when the two opposing forces are nearly equal. At the moment the economics of consumerist capitalism has the teeter-totter off balance in its favour. However, we all know that both capitalism and consumerism are unsustainable. The former progressively concentrates "wealth" in the hands of fewer and fewer people. The latter depletes the planet's resources. Unless capitalism can grow continually, it undermines the society that gives it life. Capitalist growth implies, in turn, ever accelerating resource depletion. We are seeing more and more signs that the "developed" countries and their economic system are losing their monopoly of the teeter-totter. If the analogy holds, when change comes it will come rapidly and it will be massive. At that point the ideas that now seem to be "losing" will have a chance to come to the fore. Arguing backwards one can say that the current regime will continue to maintain control of the teeter-totter until the conditions that sustain it are no longer available. ---<snip>--- =============== Dear Paul, You and I have debated these issues many times in the past. Once again, like Marx, you are predicting the imminent demise of the capitalist regime. Once again you teeter on the edge 'getting it', and once again you totter down on the ground of unsound conclusions. The problem, I suggest, is that you fail to make some critical distinctions among various aspects of 'capitalism'. Your are quite correct that consumerist growth cannot continue as it has for the past few centuries. In fact, that growth curve began its irreversible down-turn sometime in the 1970s, in absolute terms. You are quite correct that finite resources are being depleted, and that controlling the political teeter-totter creates problems for the regime. But you reveal a pollyanic blindness when you presume that the regime has no way to deal with those problems. Question: "Why did the regime instigate 911?" Answer: "To deal with the problems of the teeter-totter." The distinction that needs to be made is between capitalism, as we have known it, and the elite regime. Capitalism is something that elites invented in the late 1700s in order to harmonize their rule with the new conditions of the Industrial Revolution. They have been facile at redefining what capitalism is, and how it operates, in order to deal with whatever economic or social conditions prevail at a given time. In fact, capitalism evolves as a sequence of distinct growth phases. No one phase is ever sustainable - each always leads to a crisis. But a new phase can always be invented when the previous one dies down. One laissez-faire growth phase ended around 1929, and was followed by a New Deal adjustment phase. Then came the World War II phase, with its own intense capitalist dynamics. Then came the postwar boom-growth phase accompanied by massive wealth sharing with the Western middle classes. When that phase reached its "Crisis of Democracy", the neoliberalism phase was invented. Under neoliberalism wealth has shifted from the middle classes, and social institutions, to corporations - enabling TNCs to continue growth in a cannibalistic way. Globalization is simply neoliberalism played out on a global stage, a continuation of the same phase. The anti-globalization movement showed that people were beginning to wake up to the nature of neoliberalism / globalization. The crisis, for our elites, then became more a political issue than a growth issue. The War On Terrorism, enabled by the standard arranged outrage incident, launched a new phase. This new phase continues neoliberal economics, but it abandons the Enlightenment era coexistence with liberal democracy and civil liberties. In that sense, it is a writ-large version of Nazism, and many identify the current regime as the Fourth Reich. The following message identifies in detail the measures the regime has in place to deal with the kind of collapses you anticipate. The teeter-totter can only be shifted by conscious and collective action on our part, not by any change in economic circumstances. regards, rkm ============================================================================ Date: Mon, 10 Jun 2002 22:34:46 -0700 To: •••@••.••• [and many other lists] From: Carol Brouillet <•••@••.•••> Subject: State of Emergency in effect From: roxanne dunbar-ortiz <•••@••.•••> Subject: State of Emergency in effect Some emergency executive orders (not subject to congressional review) in effect. The USA has been in such an emergency since 9-11-01: http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2001/09/20010914-4.html EXECUTIVE ORDER 10990 allows the government to take over all modes of transportation and control of highways and seaports. EXECUTIVE ORDER 10995 allows the government to seize and control the communication media. EXECUTIVE ORDER 10997 allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals. EXECUTIVE ORDER 10998 allows the government to take over all food resources and farms. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11000 allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11001 allows the government to take over all health, education and welfare functions. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11002 designates the Postmaster General to operate a national registration of all persons. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11003 allows the government to take over all airports and aircraft, including commercial aircraft. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11004 allows the Housing and Finance Authority to relocate communities, build new housing with public funds, designate areas to be abandoned, and establish new locations for populations. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11005 allows the government to take over railroads, inland waterways and public storage facilities. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11051 specifies the responsibility of the Office of Emergency Planning and gives authorization to put all Executive Orders in to effect in times of increased international tensions and economic or financial crisis. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11310 grants authority to the Department of Justice to enforce the plans set out in Executive Orders, to institute industrial support, to establish judicial and legislative liaison, to control all aliens, to operate penal and correctional institutions, and to advise and assist the President. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11049 assigns emergency preparedness function to federal departments and agencies, consolidating 21 operative Executive Orders issued over a fifteen year period. EXECUTIVE ORDER 11921 allows the Federal Emergency Preparedness Agency to develop plans to establish control over the mechanisms of production and distribution, of energy sources, wages, salaries, credit and the flow of money in U.S. financial institution in any undefined national emergency. It also provides that when a state of emergency is declared by the President, Congress cannot review the action for six months. ============================================================================ To: •••@••.••• Date: Sat, 25 May 2002 07:34:16 -0400 Subject: Re: rkm ruminations... From: T K Wilson <•••@••.•••> Good Morning Richard, Not to worry ; I'm sure something will blow up and we'll have more than enough to talk about. That's the point actually. Blow something up, get everybody wringing their hands and shaking in their boots; go on with tightening the grip of the world capitalist hegemony. Strait out of "1984". Do people still hang out flags? That was a joke, right? Remember back in the sixties when kids got hassled for wearing the flag on their jackets? These idiots use the damn things as seat covers now, and fly them to rags and tatters on the tops of their cars in the wind and the rain right next to the flag of their favorite sports team. To some number of Americans the two are entirely equivalent. I never hated my flag or my country, both of which really only exist in peoples minds. I have always held a deep and inescapable devotion to (obsession with) the ideals of liberty, justice and freedom; of true heartfelt respect for the soul and core of every living being and its right to exist (that goes a little further than most, I know. I'm not a vegan either and that's another story). In fact, I'd like to fly the real flag (not the $2.99 car top variety) in peoples minds, because, in the country my flag represents, none of the pimping whoring lying cheating Caligulian(*) bullshit that is going on now could exist. (*) my spell checker wanted to change this to "Californians". Sometimes even a machine can get it right. Hilarious It would have been publicly executed at its inception; everywhere and in every mind in which it raised its lying head. Until Liberty is preemptively and unqualifiedly the principle founding condition of the state, the state will continue to be a pimp and a murderer. What to talk about? Lets talk about anything we're not "supposed" to talk about. Let's talk about why racism and nationalism and isolationism exist and what's OK about them (see, you already started to twitch! How deep the conditioning runs.) Lets talk about how and why we're conditioned that way by the state. What's normal and human about these kinds of irrational visceral responses? What positive purpose are they serving? Politics (aside of being the ultimate expression of cynicism) is only really ever about people and their responses to things and how to wangle and channel those responses in any productive way. Of course "productive for whom" is always the question. How is it these things end up being political "hay"? Is it now possible to establish a global Roman empire? Speaking of Rome; why is the Roman church being eviscerated now? Priests buggering babies is the stuff of legend, why the uproar at this particular juncture? What is our attention being diverted from? How will the Holy Roman Empire reinvent itself in secular guise after shedding its Christian skin? Sorry about the stream of (sub) consciousness writing here. Too much coffee. Me and Balzack baby (he died of caffeine poisoning). You want to come to the states? Sure. Come on. Are you really on anybodies shit list? Are you an American citizen? Some people have been prohibited from flying within the states but if you can get here on the ground and they have no legal reason to stop your entry, once you're in, you're good to go. Just ask ten thousand jihadists. Maybe you should apply for a student visa thru Yemen to attend a flight school in the states. Your entry will be guaranteed. Love and Rockets, TK ================= Dear TK, You raise many provocative points worthy of discussion. Let's wait and see if readers jump to the challenge. rkm ============================================================================ From: "Brian" <•••@••.•••> To: <•••@••.•••> Subject: Re: rkm ruminations... Date: Sat, 25 May 2002 07:01:37 -0700 solutions abound and are growing, but they need to be proliferated. ============= Dear Brian, I'd prefer to say that more people need to be brought into the conversation. Why don't you give us a bit of a report on what you're up to these days? How's the Hill St. hot tub scene? on the road? rkm ============================================================================ Date: Sat, 25 May 2002 10:54:38 -0700 To: •••@••.••• From: CyberBrook <•••@••.•••> Subject: Re: rkm ruminations... A couple of thoughts off the cuff: One thing we need to do is more face to face organizing...talking to friends and acquaintances, shop clerks and telemarketers, neighbors and others. Another is incorporating other media or modes of expression: cartoons, comics, songs, graffiti, culture jamming, videos, video games, etc. These will obviously get the message across with much less depth and sophistication, but will hopefully make up for that deficit with easy access and entre for currently unreached/under-reached populations. It's not just what we say, but how we say it and who is listening or able to listen. ============== Dan, Again, I'd suggest more an emphasis on dialog, as you begin, and less on propagandistic technique & getting 'messages across'. rkm ============================================================================ From: derek skinner <•••@••.•••> Subject: ruminations and what to talk about. To: "richard k. moore" <•••@••.•••> Are you talking to the Americans or trying to educate Canadians. To the Americans I suggest it is only possible to open the cracks in the administration veneer by showing how the "conspiracy nuts" like yourself have been right all along - by documenting facts and hammering the media into some sense of shame. Not the owners but the working stiffs who write the stories. To Canadians I think it works to show how the business agenda is pushed by the Mulroney, Harris, Klein and now Chretien and Campbell puppet Quislings and is eating the heart out of Canada. Within a few years we will be reduced to the equivalent of Puerto Rico, a handy resource but no say in U.S. representative government. In a nutshell, awaken the U.S. public or fight for Canadian independence. Both are necessary. I would like to know which way you decide to go. Derek Skinner =================== Both and, Derek, both and. Fighting the beast in the belly is different than on the claws, or in the jaws. viva des Quebecois, rkm ============================================================================ Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 11:33:30 -0700 (PDT) From: Joe Ferguson <•••@••.•••> Subject: Re: rkm ruminations... To: •••@••.••• Hi Richard, rkm > I need some inputs about what we should be doing on this list. I think the "task at hand" is to educate as many people as possible. Somehow the information about what's going on needs to get beyond the internet and into the neighborhoods. I don't feel like anybody knows what the next step will be, but if we figure out how to build alternative informational networks that reach a majority of people (US Citizens are most in need of this education) and DO that and REACH this majority, the next step will become clear once this first step has been achieved. - Joe ========== Joe, Nice as usual to hear from you. You echo a theme from the preceding messages. And again, I must say that participation is the key more than education. The important truths are all obvious when it comes down to it, discoverable by any who take the time to ask real questions. As Dylan put it, "You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows", or as Guthrie put it, "I read the want ads everyday, but the headlines in the paper always say...". My next posting will be material from Rosa Zubizarreta, where we can get into the centrality of dialog with a bit more focus. Nonetheless, I agree with your fundamental point, that expanding the circle is where it's at. rkm ============================================================================ Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 12:51:27 -0700 From: Janet McFarland <•••@••.•••> Subject: Re: rkm ruminations... To: •••@••.••• Hi, You ask what is worth talking about at this time. I always enjoy your "conversations" like the one on this posting, but, as you say, once you've got it, you've got it. Those who refuse to get it are very invested in their comforting perspective. I consider Quinn's analysis: the needed change is going to come from changed minds, not new programs. I'm impressed with your persistence in spelling out your reasoning again and again. But I think I "got it". So what is worth talking about? How we can change people's minds? Is that really our only leverage point that makes sense? Maybe hearing from people on their efforts and success in changing people's minds. Also, how do we keep from going crazy? We can't all move to Ireland! (and would that really be enough?) In response to your query as to how things are in the states: In the SF Bay Area there are lots of flag stickers on cars, not many displayed otherwise. The memorial day fireworks at the coliseum baseball game was pretty suffocatingly "patriotic" but I guess that's not surprising. I hear Bono wears a leather jacket lined with the flag. Sounds against the law to me (desecration of the flag or something). People I talk to are pretty universally disgusted with our government and feel very manipulated, and then they'll tell me "we have to do stuff to protect ourselves against terrorism here". It's amazing how personal fear turns off thinking. There's a lot of peace movement type stuff going on, seems to me to be pretty confused. I marched in SF April 20. People like me were mostly simply walking for peaceful solutions to world problems. There were sloganizers and people trying to promote the kind of anger and hostility familiar from Vietnam war protests, but not any general participation in the chanting. There clearly were quite a few people out walking for Palestinian solidarity, The most energetic chanting came on slogans supporting Palestinian self-determination. There was no news coverage from major news sources. Even when we reached the civic center there was only one anemic looking tv camera van (someone pointed out there had been 5 tv stations there the day before when a man was threatening to kill himself on the steps). I left shortly after arriving at the civic center. I didn't hear any of the speakers either in Dolores Park or at Civic Center. (That might have given me a different perspective). My friends were shocked when I reported having participated in the march. Apparently what got reported was some people burning Israeli flags or something similar and promoting some ugly confrontation and the peaceful intent of most of the participants was totally lost (except for small article on the inside of the Oakland Tribune). Cynicism over the recent intelligence revelations of forewarnings is pretty high, but outrage seems to be totally nonexistent. Total distrust of the Bushies is the new status quo. I guess we're used to it already. More intelligent organizing and resistance training is going on through Tikkun and SF Jewish community. I think the continuing assault of bad news is taking it's toll on most people in the form of stress. That's all the sense I can make of us. Somehow I think we can count on another attack, the more heinous the better, right before the next general election, no? Thanks. Janet ======== Dear Janet, Many thanks for the report, and hope I can meet you when next in SF. I wouldn't fall for this business about elections however. There's really no difference between Bush & Clinton, just different actors hired for different roles. Both puppets. Elections are a shell game, and whichever shell we choose it will never be the one with the payoff we seek. cheers, rkm -- ============================================================================ Featured articles: "Escaping the Matrix": http://cyberjournal.org/cj/rkm/WE/jun00Matrix.shtml "Returning to our roots": http://cyberjournal.org/cj/rkm/MC/mar01Roots.shtml "A Guidebook" for transformation: http://cyberjournal.org/cj/guide/ Jerry Fresia: "Toward an American Revolution": http://cyberjournal.org/cj/authors/fresia/ "Consensus does not mean agreement. It means we create a forum where all voices can be heard and we can think creatively rather than dualistically about how to reconcile our different needs and visions." - Starhawk, "Lessons from Seattle and Washington D.C.", in "Democratizing the Global Economy", Kevin Danaher, ed., Common Courage Press, Monroe, Maine, 2001. "If the overall pie can grow, so be it, but when it can't then elites start taking a bigger piece of whatever pie there is. The capitalist imperative is: 'Ruling elites must prosper'. Societies are managed so as to satisfy this imperative." - rkm Permission for non-commercial republishing hereby granted - BUT include and observe all restrictions, copyrights, credits, and notices - including this one. ============================================================================ .