Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Inuit prople

Otherwise known as Eskimo. Thee are some really wonderful, really amazing peopele.
They have lived as hunter-gatherers for untold thousands of years. All over the worlrl, after farming was invented, the farmers always wanted more and more land. So they took over almost all the best places where hunter-gatherers had been living, and are still pushing. But the Inuit lived in ice and snow, so for a long time, the farmers did not did not invade their territory. To the Inuit where they live is the best place in the world, and always has been. Anybody who comes up there can see how beautiful it is, and if they stay around long enough to meet the Inuit, they will lern how beautiful they are too.
    Now you may have heard stories about the Inuit having  many many words for "snow". This is true. But they might have even more words for ice. In this case it's easy enough to understand why. When they leave their igloos to go hunting, they find their way around by the ice, which they can read like a gps map. At least equally important, their many words for ice instruct them, and their children, about where to walk and where not to.

As it happens many people in many parts of the world have experienced deadly effects of climate change. You may have been hearing about the ice in the Arctic Circle melting, getting smaller. Mostly when this is mentioned, it's like a way of understanding how serious it is. But for he Inuit it has become a disaster. Even the elders themselves can no longer navigate this suddenly treacherous ice. They must be much more careful how they travel, and use other markers to guide them. The children who once learned the ice when they were very young, cannot find their way around at all. So they don't go out to hunt or play. They stay home where it is safe. Safe, but boring and empty. What this means is that climate change is killing their rich traditional culture.

Friday, October 08, 2010

We are now entering the tenth year of murdering Afghanistan. No one know why we keep on doing this. When Obama got to be president he started escalating the murders with more troops. Then made everything a lot worse with attacks by drones- pilotless planes operated by remote control from Nevada. A cowardly way to "fight", using remote control,planes, but perfectly suited to the u.s.a. and it's craven new president.
So here's to the women and children and men of Afghanistan who have endured ten years of mayhem delivered by the world's great superpower. A superpower so cowardly it rains bombs and missiles on the most pitiful, defenseless country in the world. And still expects me to stand up and salute the flag.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Some excitement this week about a video shot from an Apache helicopter killing a bunch of Iraqi guys who were just hanging out. It came from wikileaks if you haven't seen it yet. We got to see it mostly because among those killed were two Reuters photographers, and so Reuters kicked up a ruckus. otherwise it probably would not have seen the light of day. What impresses most people is the revolting way the troops talk about what they are doing- these guys sound callous and hard to the point of being hardly human anymore. They sure do like killing people, and laughing about it.

So it turns out they were acting like proper troops, doing everything the right way, always asking for permission. And all the brass sees nothing wrong with
anything they did. They followed the U.S. rules of engagement to the letter.

This footage horrified most people who saw it. But the problem is, this event is just about exactly what we are doing in Iraq and Afghanistan every day. This is what our "war" is like. Guys flying around in f-16s and choppers shooting or bombing defenseless people. It's been happening for seven yers in Iraq and nine in Afghanistan- thousands and thousnds of times. It's happening now.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Hard to know just where we are right now. In the bush days many people thought somebody was pulling his strings- that he himself was not creating and carrying out the big plans. Starting the wars, opening the gulag, all those things. And looking back it still seems that way. But what's up with obomber? He was something different in the campaign. So what happened? It's increasingly difficult to believe he is really president. Yeah he did warn us he was going to hit Afghanistan, but he didn't say this hard, he didn't say Pakistan. And he certainly never warned about those wretched drones. So now all the wars are worse than ever.

I'm pretty sure everyone knows about the corporitoscracy by now, that we are not a democracy but run by big corporations. If they didn't know it before, they must surely have figured it out with the huge bailouts everyone knows about, and the insurance give away he calls health care.
I still hear people complain about obomber having broken this or that promise, as if he were really president, and could do whatever he wanted to. Because I don't think that's how it works.
I think corporate bosses told him to do the bailouts, and to make sure we can keep on with our profligate consuming habits at Copenhagen, and now offshore oil drilling. This is kind of spectacular because we all know how bush loved drilling for oil, but he never even brought this up- about lifting a 20 year ban on drilling off the East coast. And that's what obomber just did. So I find it very hard to believe anyone but the corporate elites are running the country, and they told obomber he could be CEO of U. S. Inc.as long as he does as he is told.

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

This is about Copenhagen. Here were all the great world leaders of all the great industrial countries, the ones causing climate change by their ever increasing burning of fossil fuels. Then there were the people from the rest f the world. The ones who suffer the consequences of climate change. Small island nations drowning in the rising sea waters. The entire continent of Africa staring at a drought that will result in a terrible famine. They told the big rich polluting carbon burning countries they have got to stop what they are doing. They need to change what they call their lifestyle, which is to say the manic production and consumption of their endless bigger and shinier and more deadly products. And the great leaders of the big countries said we will not change anything. we will go on consuming and polluting and climate changing all we want to. If you poor people down South suffer and die because of our economic policies, well we can't help it. We are capitalists, and our first responsibility is neither to you nor even the planet Earth. We make money for our own greedy selves and our own greedy stockholders. Yor misery and the planets are the price of doing business our way.

That really happened. They really said that even if it meant the end of the world, they were going to continue the same rapacious brutal economic policies that had tormented the majority world for the last 500 years.

Maybe they will. Maybe though, just maybe, we will rise up and stop them.

Friday, August 21, 2009

The indigenous Dongria Kondh people of India live on and around a mountain called Niyamgiri. A british aluminum mining company has found out that there is bauxite, from which aluminum is made, in this mountain.
Because they are "civilized" and so have no way of understanding indigenous people or their deep spirituality, the Vedanta mining corp, based in London, is using its considerable power and influence to destroy the mountain looking for bauxite. But doing so will also destroy the life and culture of the Dongria Kondh. Many, many people have rallied in support of the people, including Arundhati Roy and Bianca Jagger.

All over the Global South indigenous people have been fighting for their survival against huge, too wealthy corporations whose only value is profit, and who have never hesitated to raid and even kill indigenous people if they can see monetary gain in doing so.

I believe that this is a fight the Dongria Kondh must win. They are an extremely brave and tenacious people, and if they can defeat the miners who are trying to destroy them, it will be a great victory that will inspire many people in the Global South. Maybe it will even send a message to other greedy capitalists. That a united and determined people can still beat them.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

It will not matter how many nice things the new president might do if he can't stop bombing Afghanistan. This was a crazy idea from the beginning, and it only happened because the u.s. citizens were out of their minds with fear and hate when the towers got hit. They wanted revenge, and it did not much matter to them who got hit. But that was 8 years ago. It seems reasonable to expect people to have recovered their wits by now. They have not, and that's already pathetic enough. And now here is mr. change- hope icon Obama arriving at the insane notion that more bombs on Afghanistan would somehow serve a useful purpose - I'm guessing he got some bad advice from that moron posse he surrounded himself with, but that's hardly an excuse.
Afghanistan has not known peace for 40 years. In october of 2001 when the bombs started falling, the people were cold and hungry, dying of hunger and freezing.
The assault on them then was a hideous, inexcusable war crime form the moment the first bombs fell.
Dropping still more bombs now on those pitiful little mud hut villages, the shepherds and wedding parties is beyond monstrous.

I know that many people, some even opposed to the Iraq massacre, somehow believed- and do- that it was ok to hit Afghanistan. How anyone could ever have imagined anything like that is beyond me. It has always mystified the Afghans too. Village after village, atrocity after atrocity, poor illiterate peasants have no idea why we are doing this. Neither do I. But it's got to stop.