Monday, October 06, 2008

William Ayers

Reading any nonsense against Bill Ayers is frustrating, but in the context of a bomber of children, John McCain, being the leveler, the whole thing has heightened to the empire's usual level of absurdity. Well, Bill Ayers is great (true story: all this nonsense about Obama having a coffee at Ayer's house, and everyone else saying they've had coffee with Ayers, reminded me that I met Ayers at a conference years ago and we got to talking and he took me out to Starbucks. Maybe Ayers just really likes coffee.) and I think the only good thing to come out of listening to an empire's whining, that is literally this instant violently forcing its claws on the peoples of Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere, is that more people will read go check out Ayers's blog. I'm not such a fan of Obama, and every time I listen to people distance Obama from Ayers, I just recall Ayers being really friendly, not romanticizing the Weather Underground stuff (this was at an event with about thirty guys silently sizing him up while clearly getting their radical man-crush on and he just wasn't interested in catering to that), and trying to navigate a progressive radical path. On one hand, he's living a chaptered life and he's doing great work in education and people who want to demonize him need to go read some of his books on education and see who he is these last twenty five years beyond combating republican talking points. On the other hand, he supposedly* bombed the place where they orchestrate mass campaigns of murder, pillage and rape, and I'm supposed to root against him?!

*He was part of the WUO; I have no clue if he was involved with the Pentagon bombing.

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Wednesday, July 11, 2007


Before we get to the death of Lady Bird Johnson, let's examine the impending (metaphorical) death of another onerous loser: McCain's spectacular dreams, for higher power coming crashing to earth. It is remarkable that on the day his top aides quit and the crowds murmur that he's bleeding money out of a slipshod operation, he announces that his two campaigns, against the people of Iraq and towards his presidential aspirations, are going just dandy. While it is tempting to draw further parallels, we must be careful: his campaign for president is teetering on failure, but the venture in Iraq is a criminal enterprise. So while we're weakly rooting for someone better for president, our hearts and minds go out to the Iraqi people and we have no joy in celebrating the butchery McCain has designed and abetted for them.
This is important to point out because a lot of commentators, and liberals especially, buy into this claptrap about the war "not going well." A presidential campaign can go well or it cannot go well; this rape and murder of a nation can never "go well." Ever. So while we will get drunk on cake and celebrate when McCain eventually bows out (and we'll recall his simultaneous statements on his dual Titanics), it is important to be clear about where the parallels lie and where they just obfuscate the obvious truth.
Speaking of obfuscation, CNN should fire their puppet Sanjay Gupta*, who out-and-out lies repeatedly and clearly willfully, in his libeling of Michael Moore and his new film SiCKO. If the first clip of Moore being ambushed on Wolf Blitzer isn't enough to make your blood boil, Gupta's blatant disregard for the truth on the Larry King follow-up is fairly outrageous. Of course, firing Gupta doesn't solve the real problem: Fox News is as bad as CNN. Maybe people think it should read the other way around (i.e., CNN is as bad as Fox), but if they're equal, why split hairs? Fox gets hammered time and again, deservedly so, for its racist, sexist, war-mongering demagoguery. Yet CNN regularly features the racist salvos of Glenn Beck and the racist capitalist droolings of Lou Dobbs, just to mention the worst of the pack. Yet liberals who dis Fox cop to CNN as if it's better.
Obfuscation and propaganda didn't start with the cable news channels and it doesn't end with them, either. We can look no further than the gross obit of Lady Bird Johnson who just seems so sweet and charming after being written up in her New York Times obit. The Times has the temerity to suggest that, well let me just quote:
"She was an early supporter of the environment and, in championing highway beautification, worked to banish billboards and plant flowers and trees."
Lady Bird Johnson's husband held a bloody shift conducting one of the most criminal and evil chapters in the history of humans on this earth, the american war against the people of Indochina. I've never heard hide nor hair of her criticism of these crimes at all. In particular, LBJ personally authorized the use of Agent Orange, an anti-life herbicide that obliterated miles and miles of vegetation and killed millions of animals and people. Her steadfast resolve in defending and standing by the scum that was her husband is clear in the obit, but nowhere is pronounced her complicity and the blood on her hands for any of this. As we like to say around here, Hell Burns Hotter Tonight.

*Call 404-827-1500 and press #2 to tell them.

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Thursday, February 01, 2007

An update

We were going to post something about rethinking activist strategies, but instead, we'll just strongly recommend Dan Berger and Andy Cornell's article Winning the (Anti) War and Rebuilding Political Imagination. But we think you'll be back. Why? Because we just posted the full text of George Jackson's Soledad Brother.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Hearts and Minds

Be still my beating heart. Hearts and Minds, Peter Davis's absolutely incredible documentary on Viet Nam is online. There are a lot of great documentaries, butHearts and Minds does so much more than virtually all of them. It sidesteps preaching without submitting to artificial "objectivity" and choreographs information in such a way as to simply beam and transmit. The movie has few peers and the fact that it is online must both be a mistake and something to be exploited immediately.

However, Hearts and Minds deserves a non-jumpy full quality viewing that the internet can't fully provide. Not to plug The Criterion Collection, but there is an excellent DVD available. Nonetheless, Hearts and Minds is so so so so good.

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