Cool shockwave about Katherine Harris, election 2000, and the disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of (mostly African-American) voters: GRAND THEFT AMERICA, available at BushFlash.com [ericblumrich.com]
random quotes ... to amuse, inspire, enrage:
Advice for Peacemakers
by Howard Zinn
You ask how I manage to stay involved and remain seemingly happy and adjusted to this awful world where the efforts of caring people pale in comparison to those who have power?
First: Don't let "those who have power" intimidate you. No matter how much power they have they cannot prevent you from living your life, speaking your mind, thinking independently, having relationships with people as you like. (Read Emma Goldman's autobiography LIVING MY LIFE. Harassed, even imprisoned by authority, she insisted on living her life, speaking out, however she felt like.)
Second: Find people to be with who have your values, your commitments, but who also have a sense of humor. That combination is a necessity!
Third: Understand that the major media will not tell you of all the acts of resistance taking place every day in the society, the strikes, the protests, the individual acts of courage in the face of authority. Look around (and you will certainly find it) for the evidence of these unreported acts. And for the little you find, extrapolate from that and assume there must be a thousand times as much as what you've found.
Fourth: Note that throughout history people have felt powerless before authority, but that at certain times these powerless people, by organizing, acting, risking, persisting, have created enough power to change the world around them, even if a little. That is the history of the labor movement, of the women's movement, of the anti-Vietnam war movement, the disable persons' movement, the gay and lesbian movement, the movement of Black people in the South.
Fifth: Remember, that those who have power, and who seem invulnerable are in fact quite vulnerable, that their power depends on the obedience of others, and when those others begin withholding that obedience, begin defying authority, that power at the top turns out to be very fragile. Generals become powerless when their soldiers refuse to fight, industrialists become powerless when their workers leave their jobs or occupy the factories.
Sixth: When we forget the fragility of that power in the top we become astounded when it crumbles in the face of rebellion. We have had many such surprises in our time, both in the United States and in other countries.
Seventh: Don't look for a moment of total triumph. See it as an ongoing struggle, with victories and defeats, but in the long run the consciousness of people growing. So you need patience, persistence, and need to understand that even when you don't "win," there is fun and fulfillment in the fact that you have been involved, with other good people, in something worthwhile. Okay, seven pieces of profound advice should be enough.
Archive for August, 2004
The Washington Monthly BUSH SPEAKS….HIS ADVISORS SQUIRM….President Bush on Tuesday, talking off the cuff about the idea of a national sales tax: “It’s an interesting idea. You know, I’m not exactly sure how big the national sales tax is going to have to be, but it’s the kind of interesting idea that we ought to […]
Hullabaloo There were many honorable ways to behave during the Vietnam era. There were those who believed in the war and volunteered to fight it. There were those who were drafted and went as a matter of duty. There were those who fought the war, came to believe it was wrong and came back to […]
hearkening back to Handmaid’s Tale, a distinction between negative and positive liberty:
Mr. O’REILLY: Look, the Iraq War was a big screw-up, all right? I think every clear-thinking person in the country knows it was. First of all, weapons of mass destruction did not materialize, which was the primary motivator for the war. – from O’Reilly (Fox) debates Krugman (NYT) on “Tim Russert”, CNBC, Saturday, August 7, […]
jack balkin had some important things to say on june 9 about arguments make you ashamed to be a lawyer, and about arguments for the imperial presidency.
fears & rumors of fears from unfogged – nicely articulates something i’ve been unable to about civil liberties: It’s Easy, Really Posted by Ogged on 06.09.04 Once again, I’m trying very hard to keep from thinking that the republic is on the brink of collapse. Soon, I’ll stop trying. But let me add just one […]
From Fafblog! the whole worlds only source for Fafblog., Saturday 12-June-2004: Torture: A last recourse we may require sooner and sooner The Medium Lobster has been disquieted of late at by the latest round of Iraq torture scandal news. There has been much uproar – among that irritating minority which have not been studiously scrutinizing […]
while i watched the DNC i was persistently annoyed by the media coverage. it was completely substance-less. every single commentator that i saw discussed issues like: does john kerry need to hit a homerun? or not? did john kerry hit a homerun? or not? was his speech successful at reaching out to noncommitted voters? john […]