Fascists v. Francis

You may think you already know too much about geopolitical regime-change architect Steve Bannon, perhaps you were hoping that the creep had already crept back under a rock — not at all, Bannon fans. Be of good cheer, Altrighteers! Taste fist, AntiFas!

Fulsome News and U.S. Empire Report:

Good news for the Fas: SB has crept under a different kind of rock, the Petrine.

Steve Bannon is working to make friends and influence Fascists in a Europe that has shown entirely too much unity since post-war Fascist losses in 1945. The great man is setting up shop in Italy, just one easy commute away from Vatican City, a world capital where he can simultaneously keep his friends and his enemies close. It’s at a medieval monastery built in 1204 CE (only eleven years before the Magna Carta, for the sake of Christ!), a facility quite large enough to simultaneously accommodate dozens of über-conservative deal brokers. The monastery’s building complex was built in an era when Cannon Law was supreme and unfettered, when separation of church and state was capital heresy.

Dignitatis Humanae Institute

Bannon is a reliable information (propaganda) source for the rightwing political players in the Roman Catholic Church. A base that has become most rigidly rigid in its resurgent Church Militant: a call to reinvigorate The Crusades — a mission, in their words, that has never ended, that needs recruits to defend The West from Moslems (the word Muslim is insufficiently orientalist for their purposes) that have always sought to conquer European Civilization: The Judeo-Christian West threatened by Mohamedism (orientalist for Islam) and the dreaded boogymen in the “Koran” — perhaps best pronounced perhaps as the “Ko-ran”, those fiery fiends that threaten Israel — perhaps also best pronounced as “Is-real”.

Imagine a placard on the base statue of Mr. Steve in the square of St. Peter.

Steven Kevin Bannon

Founder of Bannon Law, an informed interpretation of Cannon Law

stalwart champion of White Rights, Bannonavellianism , the guy who knows how to get the job done and is ready to drop shells on all the egg shells it takes to make a proper Stalinist Omelet.

Rough-beast incarnate: not the kind of slouch who would limit his reach to Bethlehem.

After leaving the White House, Bannon declared his intention to become “the infrastructure, globally, for the global populist movement.

Steve Bannon Is Done Wrecking the American Establishment. Now He Wants to Destroy Europe’s.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/09/world/europe/horowitz-europe-populism.html

Thanks for reading.

I come from a “shit-hole”

“The truth is that it is hard for me to say what I am. I was born in El Salvador, and its land and people are synonyms with love and freedom in my heart. But the country itself is an invention of an invader from another continent. Its language, its religion, its traditions all were imposed by the invaders, burned into us with fire and cauldrons. Our 500 year old resistance has left its mark in a perennial PTSD so ingrained in our bones that we don’t even know any other way of feeling is possible.”

Koyote the Blind

I am not an American.

I was born in the continent known as “America”, yes. But somehow this United States has given itself the name of the entire continent.

Ronald Reagan demoted the rest of this magnificent continent to the mere “Backyard of America.”

That’s when I came here, to the “land of the free,” when Ronald Reagan sent billions of dollars to military dictators so they could use the money to rape, torture, and massacre my people. I didn’t want to come here. Oh, how I hated coming to this land so full of restrictions, prohibitions, and people kept so ignorant of their own history!

Once I came here, almost no one I met knew where my country was. They all assumed I was Mexican. Except for Mexicans. They knew where I was from, and knew they couldn’t trust me because if I was from where I was, I…

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There Is No Israeli-Palestinian Conflict?

Nota Bene: Criticism of Israel does not constitute antisemitism.

Matti Friedman argues that “There Is No Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” — from the perspective of a Canadian-Israeli, a soldier-poet, an apologist for Israeli rightwing family values: a kindred spirit for those who think of Palestinians in terms of cardboard cutouts, and a considered belief that they are a waste of cardboard. He works words with great economy, clarity and imagination — a Western writer living in a Middle-Eastern geography . Mr. Friedman is currently residing in Palestine’s capital city: Al Quds.

…a kindred spirit for those who think of Palestinians in terms of cardboard cutouts…

A Palestinian demonstrator from the West Bank village of Deir Jarir, northeast of Ramallah, waves his national flag as he sits on a pile of rocks during clashes with Israeli soldiers following a march against construction on Palestinian land by members of the Jewish settlement of Ofra on April 26, 2013. Photo by Issam Rimawi/FLASH90

Friedman’s opinion piece “There Is No Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” is a study guide on how to look through both sides of a pair of binoculars in order to begin understanding that non-conflict. The article uses fifteen paragraphs to house fifteen straw men. I had intended to critique each, but have discovered that it might take a multi-part series to adequately address them, so here are the first couple straw men.

Matti Friedman (@MattiFriedman), a contributing opinion writer, is the author of “The Aleppo Codex,” “Pumpkinflowers” and the forthcoming “Spies of No Country: Secret Lives at the Birth of Israel.”

JERUSALEM — If you are reading this, you’ve most likely seen much about “the Israeli-Palestinian conflict” in the pages of this newspaper and of every other important newspaper in the West. That phrase contains a few important assumptions. That the conflict is between two actors, Israelis and Palestinians. That it could be resolved by those two actors, and particularly by the stronger side, Israel. That it’s taking place in the corner of the Middle East under Israeli rule.

They brought house keys along, planning to unlock their doors upon their return home.

West (orientalists): Palestine is in the Middle-East, it was part of the Ottoman Empire until 1918. The League of Nations — a short-lived and long defunct Western (orientalist) attempt at world order — The League unilaterally granted the British a legal instrument termed “Mandate for Palestine.”  They colonized Palestine until May 1948, when 700,000 unarmed Palestinians were forcibly removed from their homes, their neighborhoods, their ancestral homeland with only what they could cart or carry. They brought house keys along, planning to unlock their doors upon their return home — a right, ironically enough, guaranteed in that same catastrophic year by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights: 1948.

Not surprisingly, Palestinians lived in greatest number along the Mediterranean Coast.

Particularly by the stronger side: The only armed forces — unless you consider rusty Ottoman-era weapons, unreliable and inaccurate mortars, and rocks from the rubble of demolished homes to be forces rather than farces — has always been the occupier.

Let me be clear: there is no “both sides.” There is a terrorist org that endangers civilians, and there is a state that protects them. Soon, the world will stare reality in the face and finally condemnation.

— Ambassador Danny Danon

https://twitter.com/dannydanon/status/1070796719066136577

Let me be clearer: Hamas has no army, no navy, no air force, no tanks, no attack helicopters, no fighter jets, no armored vehicles, no missiles, no bombs, no nothing but rocks and a few crude unguided rockets which land with a thud. From the bottom of my heart, shut the fuck up.

Abeer Khatib

https://twitter.com/abierkhatib/status/1070824222648352771

Corner of the Middle East: a feint that reminds me of Goebbel’s Ministry of Propaganda — Lebensraum defined in terms of population density, where British “living space” included Canada and Australia.

Under Israeli rule: Not surprisingly, Palestinians lived in greatest number along the Mediterranean Coast. See Mahmoud Darwish’s famous poem “Unfortunately, It was Paradise.” Palestine is comparable to Southern California in terms of climate and real estate value. Displaced refugees were driven into Gaza, and the West Bank of the Jordan River. Ironically, again, the number of “settlers” in the West Bank is now greater than the 700,000 granted diaspora in 1948. That corner of the Middle East.

Let me be clearer: Hamas has no army, no navy, no air force, no tanks, no attack helicopters, no fighter jets, no armored vehicles, no missiles, no bombs, no nothing but rocks and a few crude unguided rockets which land with a thud. From the bottom of my heart, shut the fuck up.

Presented this way, the conflict has become an energizing issue on the international left and the subject of fascination of many governments, including the Trump administration, which has been working on a “deal of the century” to solve it. The previous administration’s secretary of state, John Kerry, committed so much time to Israeli-Palestinian peace that for a while he seemed to be here each weekend. If only the perfect wording and map could be found, according to this thinking, if only both sides could be given the right dose of carrots and sticks, peace could ensue.

To someone here in Israel, all of this is harder and harder to understand. There isn’t an Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the way that many outsiders seem to think, and this perception gap is worth spelling out. It has nothing to do with being right-wing or left-wing in the American sense. To borrow a term from the world of photography, the problem is one of zoom. Simply put, outsiders are zoomed in, and people here in Israel are zoomed out. Understanding this will make events here easier to grasp.

International Left: A political leaning so distasteful in Israel that the Left is nearly extinct. Netanyahu, a perfect storm of a politician, remarks that his opponent Benny Gantz “leans to the left.”

Deal of the Century: Trump is a fellow White Supremacist, “subject of fascination of many governments…” Trump’s interests do not include any measurable intellectual curiosity. Trump is just another convenient tool — Obama was considerably too melanin-rich, but he delivered the 3.8 billion in funding to allow the largest per-capita military prowess to eke along, to scrape a respectable secure “defense” that now includes the ethnical-cleansing maiming marvel: butterfly bullets.

John Kerry: He knows what war is, he knows who Trump is, he successfully completed the difficult negotiations with Iran — a country without nuclear weapons. Israel gets to have it both ways: nuclear weapons? Yes, No, Maybe, Meh. “Hey, what’s happening over there?” No, it’s what’s happening here, we’re picking your plump wallet. 

Perfect Wording : Who is your new friend there? I hear he comes from a good Saud family (the only country in the world run by a single family.

… a political leaning so distasteful in Israel that the Left is nearly extinct.

I include myself among those who sense that a long, deep and deadly conflict has extended into the longest and most threatening conflict in at least the last several centuries. I was eight-months old in May 14, 1948, but have only been paying close attention to the conflict/non-conflict since the mid 1960s.

The population of Palestine/Israel has reached parity, there are as many Palestinians as Israelis within the same geography. Israel has managed to eliminate any remote semblance of a two-state solution with a divide and occupy strategy:

  • Maintaining an apartheid wall
  • “Withdrawing” from the Gaza Testing Range and Petri dish
  • “Settling” the West Bank
  • An 800 state solution (to paraphrase Mordechai Kedar)
  • Demolishing homes, occupying homes, uprooting ancient olive trees, terrorizing children of any age…
  • Tracking and imprisoning children over the age of 11.
  • Using overwhelmingly overwhelming force and security equipment possessing advanced technological capabilities, such as those butterfly bullets.

Fencing commuter highways along the length of both shoulders, thereby fracturing Palestinian populations into an 80-state solution

Recommended reading on the topic by someone who knows Palestine inside-out:

A Short History of Collective Punishment by Stanley Cohen

Nota Bene Too: The phrase “security for the Jews” has been consecrated as an exclusive synonym for “the lessons of the Holocaust.” It is what allows Israel to systematically discriminate against its Arab citizens. For 40 years, “security” has been justifying control of the West Bank and Gaza and of subjects who have been dispossessed of their rights living alongside Jewish residents, Israeli citizens laden with privileges. — Amira Hass

http://www.palestinechronicle.com/amira-hass-the-holocaust-as-political-asset/

As always, opposing viewpoints are welcome on this blog. Please try to limit your comments to 500 words.

Thanks for reading.


Positive Discourse Analysis

Mira is the author of Everything socio and eco linguistic. In celebration of  the March for Science: Earth Day 2017, I yield the podium to my favorite socio and eco linguist — is there a better way to spend the day than to join me in this audience? No. In all events, allow me to present this esteemed socio-linguini a plaque fashioned from 100% recycled and recyclable electrons. It is an official prize: one bestowed on Mira for inspiring me to write an article on the work of Stephen Keene, Alan Turing and, while we’re at it, George Boole.

Here are the bases for blog-award bestowal:

The candidate must be —

  1. Enthusiastic
  2. Wise
  3. Inspiring
  4. Scholarly
  5. Intellectually curious
  6. Socio-eco-linguistically oriented
  7. Raises her voice for exploitable (and therefore exploited) sentient beings
  8. Writes about text analyses
  9. Appreciates vegan humor

On the other hand, here is a Descartes-Like phrase that does not describe the candidate for blog-award bestowal::

I exploit, therefore I am.

Meine Damen und Herren, darf ich vorstellen?

 

 

Sociolinguini Blog

‘Discourse is shaped by relations of power, and invested with ideologies’.

 (Fairclough 1992: 8 in Jaworski and Coupland 1999: 2).

Critical Linguistics: a consciousness-raising tool

According to Tom Bartlett (2010), in the 70s and 80s the study of texts took a political turn in the UK, with the rise of Critical Linguistics (CL) (Kress and Hodge, 1979). The main aim of CL was to reveal how texts can hide or distort important aspects of the events they claim to represent. Analysis focused on grammatical features as well as vocabulary choices. A central aim was to unpackage biases and points of view that were concealed in publications such as newspapers, articles and school books.

One aspect of analysis that is still discussed today is that of agency, the way in which grammar allocates responsibility to participants. Here is an example from Kieran O’Halloran (2003):

  1. Policeshot 10 people today as violence…

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Palestinians Are Either in Exile or in Prison

The geography of Palestine has fascinated me for many years. As I become more familiar with Arabic — particularly the Levantine dialect — I seek to examine geography, language and the not so gentle tool of propaganda with an understanding of mental maps. So I am bringing this previously published post forward from February 25th to April 5th. Palestine is a place that was declared an un-place when I was 8 months old, its persons were declared unpersons. Yet they number 6 million quite real persons — in exile or in prison.

billziegler1947

 Hello.

hiSource

Today we look at two nouns rooted in  Palestinian history 

1948 a

1967 a

Languages based on a root system are dendritic — consider trees, rivers, fractals..

dendriticSource

Look at the two letters in blue  b (ب )  s ( س )

But now a word from our sponsor:

On the day of Nakba, 700,000 people were exiled from their ancestral homes.

Andrew Jackson’s illegal exile of the Cherokees began in 1838. Jackson may not have said

“Marshall has made his decision, now let him enforce it,”

but the result was still dispossession.

President Jackson drove the Cherokee Nation into an exile called The Indian Territories until they in turn became Oklahoma. Native Americans now live in rural areas served by Food Desert convenience stores — they get to stay there until a monied…

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Martha in the End Times

Martha Stephens writes beautifully about important matters — at nearly 80, she is a gentle, kind and inspired source for all who raise candles in solidarity for the brutally exploited.
Before beginning my own blog I wrote to her about a theme I was considering. To a large extent mine is still a commonplace book — one that contains matters close to my being — in some way all weaving together.
Please enjoy this superb blog. I’ve met many kind and wonderful people here.
Read this nota bene from Martha —

       “NB: If you’ve read this far, my friends, please consider Following this blog.  You’d get a notice about new posts only every month or two — and I don’t always write this long!  Also happy to have your Comments little or big . . . .”

 

marthastephens

ARE THESE the end times, my friends?  Have we fellows on Planet Earth just been waiting, ever since November 8, for the final chaos to overtake us?

I guess we figure, even so, that in the meantime we might as well go on with our lives.   See myself here with my Mexican-American friend Christina at the soup kitchen last month in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

We’d chopped vegetables together all morning, and talked and carried on, and now our guests were about to appear — 250 of our fellow citizens, mostly people without work or with work that does not pay them enough to live on.  All of them just carrying on, too, I suppose, in this richest of all countries in the world.

The Fist

BUT THESE END TIMES, my friends — is this the twilight of the gods?  The last cataclysm, perhaps, as predicted by the ancient writings?  Will we see, in the end, the…

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Pulp & Politics: Blake’s 7

Today I’m taking you on a field trip to the north and west of Italy, made possible by a friend and fellow blogger— Davide Mana is our host.

Apparently you had to be in Britannia between 1978 and 1981, or you missed the whole thing. So bring along a device that is YouTube capable. If your ears are as bad as mine you might also pack a voice-captioning device that mishears words as often as I do. Allow me to share one word match in the dictionary-database — the verb “trump” rendered as the (proper?) noun “Trump.”

Please bring your hands (or tentacle equivalent) together and welcome the guy who makes this all possible. Join me in welcoming Dr. Mana!

Karavansara

The joys of Youtube.
I’ve spent the last few nights watching old episodes of the BBC’s Blake’s 7, a space opera series that aired between 1978 and 1981, and that was never distributed in my country.
And I must say I’m positively impressed.

blake1_2530865b

Because it’s an old show, and produced on a very short and frail shoestring budget, but what the heck, it’s good fun and great storytelling.

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Astoundingly Analog

Let us say you are on the way to Mars in 1958. Let’s actually place you in the pilot’s cabin of a spacecraft in a distant future — 1980. Back home at mission control, pipe-smoking scientists and cigar-smoking generals are using the magic of radio — bigger, better, more vacuum tubes.

 

space-ship-controls
Source

 

Meanwhile, other American scientists and generals are helping Japan battle monsters all kind. Godzilla, Gamera. Scientists, generals and the kids and singing miniature friends of Gamera.

 

A confident team on Earth barks orders. Walls crammed with magnetic-tape driven mechanical brains. What gives with all those dials?

 

Isn’t it time for you to mention Phillip K. Dick again?

Of course it is. PKD.

And speaking of analog, your LP, 45 is performing its proverbial broken record role. Time you enter the future of home recording — the reel-to-reel tape deck.

 

science-fiction-sunday
BoingBoing Science Fiction Sunday

There’s a reel or two from my good old 3M Wollensak in the basement, or somewhere. Here is some advice you don’t need — cheap magnetic tape flakes its coating; it had a ferrous smell.

You probably have a large box of vacuum tubes, condensers, capacitors, resistors too.

Yes.

And when I wasn’t trying to make sulphuric acid and release free chlorine gas? See Chemistry 001 for more. What to do?  Well, wrap copper wire around an oatmeal box to make a crystal radio, one with an antenna stretching from attic to nearest tree. That there radio pulled in one (1) station. Those were less modern electronic times, the days before a portable radio could contain up to 12 transistors.

We don’t seem to be getting anywhere here. Are you fumbling for a coherent, direct and unambiguous theme, Bill?

No.

You need help, Bill. We hope you’ll get the help you need. Let’s help get you back on task. Didn’t you program a computer in that world of the future? 1980’s.

’twas a circuit-board materials plant in Blanchester, Ohio. I still have several 8K boards that were suspended on a rod and inserted into a motherboard. Those 8 boards provided all the memory needed to power a 64K core memory. No old-fashioned 80-column cards for the CIP 2200B. No indeed. 96-column cards were a fraction the size, yet delivered more columns for nifty RPGII program code.

96-column

What did the Electronic Circuitboard Materials Division do before becoming ‘computerized’ in that 1980’s distant future?

The order-entry system wrote data on thin bamboo sheets with a paper covering. Perforated strips had columns inscribed with a straight edge and ballpoint pen. The bamboo was flexible; it allowed you to move order data up and down a steel “book” flanged on each side. Those strips traced an order from entry to shipping. When the order shipped you snapped that bamboo and tossed it into a waste can.

Once again, you are allowing your mind to wander. We’re interested in results (and getting you the help you need).

I programmed a database to convert the bamboo modus operandi into electronic databases. We went parallel with the bamboo strips for a month, all went smoothly and moved right along — until competition from Japan arrived in that future 1980’s world. Cutting to the proverbial chase: the plant closed and reopened as a Honda parts facility. I became a single parent of two incredibly wonderful children when my wife died in 1983.

The Japanese no longer had to defeat Godzilla, Gamera and all the other monsters. Nippon had time to become an economic juggernaut.

Where did you go then?

To work on my M.A. in Germanic Languages and Literatures, of course.

 

germanic-languages
Source

Well that’s a finely fiddled career path, innit? 

Naturally it was. I had until 1993 to meet Lisa online in the advanced bulletin-board system of that more distant future world of the 90’s.

Didn’t you get back into databases when you discovered that classroom management was not your forte, but your greatest weakness?

Yes. Had to  do something until Y2K came along without two columns on an 80-column-card. An assumed “19” fostered justifiable fear. Had the 96 column card been available in those 1950’s spaceships — my mind begins to boggle.

We can wait. 

OK.

Thanks for reading.

 

 

‘Those vegans’ and nonveganism advocacy

An Elephant in the Room is a coherent and valuable resource for vegans who join in solidarity with all sentient beings on this shared planet. We speak a truth that vanquishes denial — one argument at a time.
Look into the eyes of the billions sentenced to death for the crime of being edible, for sating crazy appetites, for sturdy hide, the whim of fashion, for savvy consumers, enterprising marketers and future futures markets.
Examine the banner at the top of this blog. Look into the those five eyes and realize that you gaze into a complex ocular system that arose during the Cambrian explosion. When you look into the eyes of a fellow sentient being you are looking at a fellow soul.

There's an Elephant in the Room blog

chick-1890774_960_720There’s a perception of veganism, and of many vegans too, as vociferous and/or challenging. We’ve all seen comments that go, ‘thank goodness you’re not one of ‘those vegans’ and no doubt this is intended as a compliment by those who are not vegan themselves.

This ‘compliment’ sits alongside a nonvegan perception of themselves as passive, just quietly minding their own business, not wanting to be challenged about their ‘choices’ in the same way that they consider themselves to be tolerant of the ‘choices’ of others.

I’ve seen posts shared humbly, even apologetically by vegans, aware they will be viewed by those who aren’t vegan, knowing that they are likely to be subjected to some form of retaliation for disturbing the tranquillity.

And it occurs to me that although not being vegan is the default state for the vast majority of us, it is VERY far from being a passive…

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An Uncertain Will (reblogged from Summa Amare)

 

An Uncertain Will

German Nazis Embrace Vegan Cooking

 

2000px-ingsoc_logo_from_1984-svg

From the comment thread:

The synopsis here is that there is a generation of superficial people who are utilising moral concepts as a fashionable tool rather than for any genuine concern; being a vegan is ‘cool’ and thus an image while fraudulently promoting products that is completely anti-animal rights and if not, certainly is lacking in morality such as cosmetic surgery. These same people talk of being an individual and ‘unique’ – a very trick in itself instigated to promote the idea that they have not actually submitted to this ploy – obvious since they are all doing the same thing. That is because they themselves have become a product.

They are reverberating the same tools that has been instilled by marketing and advertising ploys; ‘marketing’ is basically the master indirectly telling the slave that he is ugly – thus making him feel anxious – before convincing him to willingly submit to his enslavement by offering him the opportunity to be relieved of the anxiety. He profits and since the slave becomes willing and thus more productive, the profits become sustainable.

The problem here is, if we have a generation of people who submit to this speciousness, then why would it be presumptuous to assume that they will soon submit to something like neo-Nazism where they too are now utilising an effective method of justifying their hatred through fashionable tools.

The problem here is, if we have a generation of people who submit to this speciousness, then why would it be presumptuous to assume that they will soon submit to something like neo-Nazism where they too are now utilising an effective method of justifying their hatred through fashionable tools.

nazihipster

Con artists do not preface a pitch with  the disclaimer: “First, I must tell you that I am a con artist.”