Thursday, August 31, 2006

Hot Library Smut

[I have seen this book in person & the nonist is correct, if you love books, the large, glossy photos are breathtaking] From: The Nonist Red-Hot and Filthy Library Smut Now, coming upon this post as you are, unawares, I feel I ought to clarify the title (which was alternately going to be sex libris) straight away by telling you what this post is not, in fact, about. By “library smut” I am in no way referring to the photo books on native peoples, or the illustrated health manuals, or any of the other volumes which, in your childhood, you lurked about the library aisle to find with the sole purpose of sneaking guilty glances at naked bodies. Nor am I referring to the “risqué” novels by Miller, Cleland, Réage, or Lawrence you leafed impatiently through as a teenager. No. What I’m talking about here is the full-frontal objectification of the library itself. Oh yeah. Yesterday I came across a truly gorgeous book of photographs by Candida Höfer titled, Libraries, a title which pretty much says it all, because that is just exactly what it is, one rich, sumptuous, photo of a library interior after another. It’s like porn for book nerds. Seriously. They are gorgeous photos, nearly all without visitors and just begging to be entered. (ha. sorry.) See below for 14 examples which I particularly liked, but keep in mind these 500px wide version can’t really compete with the big, glossy, real thing. ...
Trinity College Library, Dublin

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Philip Hallawell, Artist from Brazil

Philip Hallawell is a master Brazilian artist who is also distinguished as an educator, writer, lecturer, and television personality. His works have been shown in Brazil, London, Spain, and the United States, in more than forty one-man shows, group exhibitions, and salons.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

California Seeks to Clear Hemp of a Bad Name

STRATFORD, Calif Charles Meyer’s politics are as steady and unswerving as the rows of pima cotton on his Central Valley farm. With his work-shirt blue eyes and flinty Clint Eastwood demeanor, he is staunchly in favor of the war in Iraq, against gun control and believes people unwilling to recite the Pledge of Allegiance should be kicked out of America, and fast. Domestic hemp production was promoted in World War II but later outlawed. Hemp twine was on sale this month at the 15th annual Hempfest in Seattle. But what gets him excited is the crop he sees as a potential windfall for California farmers: industrial hemp, or Cannabis sativa. The rapidly growing plant with a seemingly infinite variety of uses is against federal law to grow because of its association with its evil twin, marijuana. “Industrial hemp is a wholesome product,” said Mr. Meyer, 65, who says he has never worn tie-dye and professes a deep disdain for “dope.” “The fact we’re not growing it is asinine,” Mr. Meyer said. Things could change if a measure passed by legislators in Sacramento and now on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s desk becomes law. [The bill reached Mr. Schwarzenegger last week; he has 30 days to sign or veto it.] Seven states have passed bills supporting the farming of industrial hemp; their strategy has been to try to get permission from the Drug Enforcement Administration to proceed. But California is the first state that would directly challenge the federal ban, arguing that it does not need a D.E.A. permit, echoing the state’s longstanding fight with the federal authorities over its legalization of medicinal marijuana. The hemp bill would require farmers who grow it to undergo crop testing to ensure their variety of cannabis is nonhallucinogenic; its authors say it has been carefully worded to avoid conflicting with the federal Controlled Substances Act. But those efforts have not satisfied federal and state drug enforcement authorities, who argue that fields of industrial hemp would only serve as hiding places for illicit cannabis. The California Narcotic Officers Association opposes the bill, and a spokesman for the Office of National Drug Control Policy in Washington said the measure was unworkable. Mr. Schwarzenegger, a Republican running for re-election, has been mum on his intentions, with the political calculus of hemp in California difficult to decipher. The bill was the handiwork of two very different lawmakers, Assemblyman Mark Leno, a San Francisco Democrat best known for attempting to legalize same-sex marriage, and Assemblyman Charles S. DeVore, an Orange County Republican who worked in the Pentagon as a Reagan-era political appointee. Their bipartisan communion underscores a deeper shift in hemp culture that has evolved in recent years, from ragtag hempsters whose love of plants with seven leaves ran mostly to marijuana, to today’s savvy coalition of organic farmers and health-food entrepreneurs working to distance themselves from the drug. Hundreds of hemp products, including energy bars and cold-pressed hemp oil, are made in California, giving the banned plant a capitalist aura. But manufacturers must import the raw material, mostly from Canada, where hemp cultivation was legalized in 1998. The new hemp entrepreneurs regard it as a sustainable crop, said John Roulac, 47, a former campaigner against clear-cutting and a backyard composter before founding Nutiva, a growing California hemp-foods company. “They want to lump together all things cannabis,” said David Bronner, 33, whose family’s squeeze-bottle Dr. Bronners Magic Soaps, based in Escondido, Calif., are made with hemp oil. “You don’t associate a poppy seed bagel with opium.” The differences between hemp and its mind-altering cousin, however, can be horticulturally challenging to grasp. The main one is that the epidermal glands of marijuana secrete a resin of euphoria-inducing delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, or T.H.C., a substance all but lacking in industrial hemp. Ernest Small, a Canadian researcher who co-wrote a major hemp study in 2002 for Purdue University, compared the genetic differences to those that separate racehorses from plow horses. Evolution, Mr. Small said, has almost completely bred T.H.C. out of industrial hemp, which by law must have a concentration of no more than three-tenths of 1 percent. To its supporters, industrial hemp is utopia in a crop. Prized not only for its healthful seeds and oils, rich in omega-3 and -6 fatty acids, but also its fast, bamboo-like growth that shades out weeds, without pesticides. “Simply put, you create a jungle in one year,” said John LaBoyteaux, who testified in Sacramento on behalf of the California Certified Organic Farmers association. “There’s a growing market out there, and we can’t tap it.”

Velvet Rope of the Unicorn, by Cynthia Marie

* The porcelain flesh beneath my eye seduces me to a perilous despair. She resists, disrupts my desire with a frightening quality, I lace her with golden threads, weaving in and out of her. I reign her in by her unruly flaxen mane. My heart trembles for me as I place my lips to the hollow of her slim tender throat, pierce her vulnerability with my tongue mercilessly. I beg her to confess her secrets - She defiantly refuses. My hands have a mind of their own as I place her in shallow water, and lash her with my golden rope, gently...obsessively...wickedly Overcome by her supine form, I fall to my knees, revel in the pliancy of her as she becomes as zephyr...everywhere and nowhere..within me... the very air, I breathe her into my lungs, hold her there and exhale her back into life. My lover is all shimmery and golden in her exquisite pain that soon eclipses into pleasure. At last Manuela pours forth all her poetic mysteries, my ethereal porcelain nude whimpers my name, Oh... she inflames me with a thundering passion, I am assailed by a deep blue ocean love, unfathomable and breath-taking. I feel at once empowered and ashamed. My fire for Manuela burns and builds in me night after night, I must have her, and each time I capture her I add another ember to the fire. This is a desire that cannot ever be completely fulfilled, haunting my days and owning my nights, my existence only truly begins once I place my foot inside her canopied circle. Once Master, I am now now the yearning Slave. Destiny is Victorious. *

Monday, August 28, 2006

Thanks for the heads up Dr Krofam Ruler of the MySpace Bulletins

[I realize this is too small to read, so click the link to see full graphic & text in the NYT, or save the image to your hard drive & make it larger to see]

California wetlands restored after 107 years

by Gillian Flaccus HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. The ocean flowed into historic wetlands yesterday for the first time in more than a century after bulldozers peeled back the last layer of an earthen dam. Environmentalists who worked for 30 years to restore the massive Bolsa Chica area cheered and sipped champagne as the salty water poured into the fragile ecosystem that had been tapped as an oil field for decades. The event capped a two-year project that cost more than $100 million and shunted a portion of the scenic Pacific Coast Highway onto an overpass. Officials said it would take at least six hours for the ocean water to fill the 387-acre basin. The area had been separated from the ocean since 1899, when a duck-hunting club diked ponds to make it easier to catch their prey. The eight state and federal agencies involved in the project call it the largest and most ambitious restoration of coastal wetlands in the history of California, where 95 percent of saltwater marshes have been given over to development. The Bolsa Chica wetlands project is at the cutting edge of a new and evolving science, said Shirley Dettloff, a member of the conservation group Amigos de Bolsa Chica and a former member of the California Coastal Commission. ``Not many wetlands have been restored in the world, especially in an oil field," said Dettloff, who has fought for the wetlands for 30 years. ``Even we locals sometimes forget that this was the second-largest functioning oil field in the state of California . . . since the 1930s." The degraded wetlands are already home to 200 species of birds, including six endangered and threatened species, said Marc Stirdivant, executive director of Bolsa Chica Land Trust. Tidal flows and ebbs will fill and drain the basin twice a day, restoring a natural rhythm that should replenish the fragile ecosystem and could attract more species.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Words like Gladiators in A Cage, by firoze shakir

of my mind scream and shout wrestling bout.. spawned to slavery let them out.. so they in new found freedom can show their busted snouts and online cyberstalked my poetic thoughts like a broken fountain and a missing spout tremble, miss a step and yet gush out.. as I, of her do moon about me a shia thug, and devout how the hell did this come about and on the unpaved walks of buzznet like littered gloom it did sprout clawing my soul a talent scout dying within.. and dying without.. on the heart of her journal being kicked about.. Imperceptibly and no doubt

Saturday, August 26, 2006

The Life of Edgar Cayce

[Thanks to Miss Anne Thropic for the link] VIDEO of The Life of Edgar Cayce Virginia Beach is home to the headquarters of Edgar Cayce (1877-1945), the renowned psychic called the "sleeping prophet" for his ability to enter a trance while making medical diagnostic "readings." I'm drawn to this sort of thing in the same way that my husband craves seeing new golf courses. So we drove north of the boardwalk to the Association for Research and Enlightenment, founded by Cayce in 1931 to study such subjects as holistic health, spirituality, dreams, ancient mysteries, intuition and reincarnation. We weren't sure what -- or who -- to expect at the place, which looked more like a library than a temple of spirituality. During a tour, we found out that the property does have a library -- one of the largest metaphysical collections in the world -- along with a peaceful meditation room and a 48-foot-diameter labyrinth modeled after one in the cathedral in Chartres, France. Not really a museum, although a few of Cayce's personal items are displayed, the center is a place for seminars, classes, fellowship and research and has the atmosphere of a college classroom building. Our tour group of 14 was mainly vacationers, with a few Cayce aficionados. The guide told us about Cayce's psychic techniques, his predictions and a bizarre incident involving his ability to see auras, outlines of color around people said to reflect vibrations of the soul. Cayce was in a department store one day and pushed the elevator button, the guide said. When the car arrived, he looked in and saw no auras around any of the riders. He decided to wait for another elevator. Moments later, the story goes, the cable broke and all inside were killed. True or not, the tale was enough to prompt me to lay out $15 for a book about the man.

Friday, August 25, 2006

NASA sheds light on dark matter

by Lucy Sherriff First direct evidence? NASA says it now has the first direct evidence for the existence of dark matter, thanks to observations of a huge, intergalactic collision. Researchers using the Chandra-X telescope have been watching two galactic clusters collide, an event they say is the most energetic in the universe, ever, apart from the Big Bang. They also used Hubble, the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope and the Magellan optical telescopes to track the location of the mass in each cluster using gravitational lensing. This is the phenomenon whereby a sufficiently large mass can actually bend the path of light, so that you can see something that would otherwise be obscured by a massive galaxy, for instance. As the two galaxy clusters smash into one another, the huge clouds of hot, gaseous normal matter encounter drag, similar to air resistance. Because of this, normal matter is slowed down by the impact of one cluster on another. Dark matter, on the other hand, continues unimpeded since it doesn't interact with normal matter, except through gravity. This separation of the two types of matter shows up in the data, NASA says, and this provides the evidence that the dark matter is really there. Most of the matter in the universe is thought to be so-called dark matter. It gets its name because it is effectively invisible, and until now its existence could only be inferred from its gravitational effects. The term was invented to account for the fact that despite not having enough mass to hold themselves together under their own gravity, galaxies still spectacularly failed to tear themselves apart. Astronomers reasoned that something invisible, but massive, must be holding things together. Hence, dark matter. However, not all scientists agree (and when do they ever?). Some alternative theories have been put forward, but NASA says only dark matter can explain the observations here. Doug Clowe of the University of Arizona, and leader of the study, says the work has "closed the loophole" on gravity. "A universe that's dominated by dark stuff seems preposterous, so we wanted to test whether there were any basic flaws in our thinking," he said "These results are direct proof that dark matter exists." ®

Ozone hole stable, say scientists

Leading scientists in the United States say the hole in the ozone layer of the Earth's atmosphere above the Antarctic appears to have stopped widening. The ozone layer blocks the Sun's ultra-violet rays, exposure to which is harmful to humans, animals and plants. International agreements were reached to end the use of ozone-depleting chemicals called CFCs after the hole was discovered in 1986. It is hoped the hole may "heal" fully over the next 60 years. Two of the scientists whose work helped alert the world to the existence of a hole in the ozone layer in the 1980s told a conference in Washington they were hopeful that the ozone layer was recovering. "I'm very optimistic that we will have a normal ozone layer sometime, not in my lifetime, but perhaps in yours," said Dr David Hofman, who works for the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as director of the Global Monitoring Division. Dr Susan Solomon, of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, said she was also optimistic. ...

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Jane Roberts, Enlightenment, and Wisdom From a Splinter

by Ellen R. Gilbert In the early morning of January 25, 2006 I awoke from a deep, incisive dream. I lay quietly for a while, trying to solidify and even magnify what I could from it. Like many deep dreams, it was mostly feeling-tones, snatches of sentences, some visuals, and especially some vague recall of having an informational conversation with another part of myself.

One thing I did understand immediately was that it related back to the previous Sunday night’s International teleconference session with Kris and the subject of achieving enlightenment through compassion, but it also had something to do with Jane Roberts and her struggles with her physical symptoms. I could “hear” snatches of conversation in my head about these things, and a distinct concern from my own Essence, Kwaa’Ji, that I must try to sort or filter some of this dream period into my waking consciousness. In other words, it seemed important on several levels.

As I lay there unmoving, trying to recapture as much of the dream as I could, a segment of Paul Helfrich’s summation of the International session that he posted on the Dream-Art Science forum came to mind (“Dinner & A Dead Guy Reprise/Aspects Theory” topic):

“Kris briefly mentioned Ruburt (Jane Roberts) as someone who was enlightened (I only later wondered how that could be in the context of earlier comments several years ago that Jane’s sinful self was the ‘psychological cancer’ that caused her death. Perhaps enlightenment is only permanent, stable access to Source, since the body must be eventually disengaged from in some fashion. But why such a painful, dramatic choice at the peak of her career? If THAT’s an example of enlightenment, then most of our assumptions about the state are way off base.)”

Questioning Assumptions About What enlightenment Is

The same thoughts Paul states here had caused me to pause and reconsider how we understand enlightenment. Now I was laying in the dark with the distinct impression that I’d just been offered some really powerful and even detailed understandings, but it was up to me to piece it back together from the breadcrumbs of impressions, words, and visuals that I found myself now carefully and meticulously gathering up as I walked back through the dark forest of that dream.

Something about Jane Roberts’s physical struggles was key. I felt intuitively that Kris was correct – that Jane had achieved a state of enlightenment, but that perhaps we are mistaken when we believe that enlightenment must encompass a TOTAL understanding in all areas of our lives.

If enlightenment is an awakening, unfolding PROCESS, then many of us are – to a greater or lesser extent, in different areas of our lives – enlightened, while still being very much “in the dark” in other areas. In Jane’s case, she brought the light of her understanding, her life’s work, to many people, changing the lives of many of us in countless ways. I don’t exaggerate when I say that the Seth material literally helped SAVE my own life.

Jane became enlightened and enlightened many of us in the process, i.e. by (dictionary definitions) 1) shedding light, illuminating, 2) freeing from ignorance and misinformation, 3) sparking a movement marked by questioning of traditional doctrines and values.

In the area of her physical struggles, however, enlightenment did not come, and there were many reasons why, and I think Kris is taking us all into the next understanding of this with his present work in this area, with his assertion that compassion leads to enlightenment.

During the day following my deep dream, Jane Roberts’s physical difficulties and her inability to overcome them stayed on my mind. Like Paul had stated, to become so enlightened in so many ways – Jane soared to great mental and metaphysical heights – only to become literally imprisoned in the increasingly rigid shell of her body.

“There’s something more here, I know it,” I kept muttering to myself, “and of course it has to do with my own personal struggles and issues, else why would it have come to me and caused me to awaken with these vivid but fragmentary impressions in the middle of the night? What do Jane’s particular issues have to do with my own?”

Kris’ “Triple A” method of Acknowledging, Addressing to, and Accepting our beliefs and ourselves, along with his current sessions on achieving enlightenment THROUGH compassion, was a river that threaded its way continually through my musings as I went about my day. What was the connection?

When I had finished with my crossing guard duties for the day, I returned home and, seeing the emptied trash barrel, I took it and rolled it around to its place behind the house. As I pulled closed the rickety wooden gate, I picked up a splinter in my finger. Inside the house, I rummaged around for a pair of tweezers to pull it out, but the tweezers couldn’t quite grasp it, so I went to my sewing box and got out a needle.

Still pondering my dream and Jane and Triple A, I started picking and peeling apart the top layers of my skin to enable me to get a grip on the splinter and pull it out. When I had teased away enough skin to be able to grasp it, I grabbed it with the tweezers, only to discover that the little sliver of wood had broken in pieces all along its length.

Damn. Gotta peel away more layers, and pick and prod some more to get at each tiny bit of wood. There must have been about five or six tiny little bits of the splinter to dig out, each one of course, more deeply embedded under more layers of skin, and becoming more painful as I poked and tore at the skin to reach each one.

By the time I got to that last tiny shard, my finger was sore and it was getting difficult to even see that last tiny bit, as the skin was so ravaged at this point. I almost said “fuck it,” tired of the tediousness and pain of it all, LOL, but it’s that part that sticks in so deeply that touches the nerve so insistently that really needs to be excised, if you want to be free of the pain....

Self-Acceptance is a Many-layered Path

Okay, I’m no dummy. I know I’m creating this scenario for a very distinct reason! After the hours of pondering over my dream, here within this humble little splinter demonstration were some big insights into how the Triple ‘A’ method works. Kris has continually said, ever since he first introduced it, that as you AAA, you reveal deeper and deeper issues that you again AAA, until you get to the root of it all.

In my last session with Kris I went over what I had uncovered concerning one of my own traumatic issues, and Kris offered that I had come quite close to attaining closure on it, but that the very understanding that closure was within reach had given me a whole new set of concerns and responsibilities to have to face up to.

Looking at it through the analogy of the splinter, in other words, there was still a piece of splinter buried in my psyche, and I was so close to it, but it was becoming more and more tender every time I turned my attention to it, that I was tempted to just leave it where it was, let scar tissue cover it over. I knew I couldn’t do that, however, and Kris told me that indeed, this was not the end of the process, that I had to uncover the rest by myself, for my own best interests and personal fulfillment.

What Does This Have To Do With Jane Roberts And Enlightenment?

It’s undeniable, at least to my way of thinking, that Jane had reached a degree of enlightenment in a number of areas, as I stated earlier, but she could not bring to light that most deeply buried psychological splinter that penetrated her very soul, the issue that was really and truly at the root of her physical difficulties: her traumatic childhood relationship with her abusive mother, who was herself a completely bedridden rheumatoid arthritic.

This last splinter bit was revealed only in the final month of her life, when she was literally at the end of her rope, as detailed in her final book, ironically titled The Way Toward Health. Enlightenment, I believe, entails bringing to light those areas of the psyche that are dark, hidden, repressed, buried – those areas that hold attachment to shame, guilt, fear, horror and disgust. In the final pages of that book, Jane finally gets down to the nitty gritty.

People often express wonder, confusion, and even anger that Jane couldn’t heal herself, that after all, she had Seth for pity’s sake! This is where Kris’ words to me ring clear as a bell:

KRIS: “There are many occasions when – though we might perceive situations – it is in YOUR best interests to simply be, or have mentioned to you, that this is not the end of the process. The rest you have to uncover by yourself. The validity of self-discovery is far more fulfilling than to simply have situations and answers spoon-fed to you.”

It’s not that Seth didn’t have the answers for Jane, it was that Jane had to bring them to light herself. Seth DID offer lots of advice, nudges, pointed out psychological areas to examine, certain issues to address, etc., maybe even his own version of the AAA or Elias’s NIRAA (Noticing, Identifying and Recognizing, Addressing to, and Accepting beliefs) method (I’m thinking here of his advice to Jane to address her so-called “sinful self” which was a definite step into utilization of those methods).

As I was pondering these things in my mind while removing the final piece of the splinter that was in my finger, and squeezed out the blood that now started to flow in order to wash out any toxins, I got the last insight into Jane’s situation:

The bottom line is that Jane had to dig out the deep, dark secrets and purge them herself and she....just....didn’t....get to them in time. It was only in her final month in the hospital, when she was nearly incapacitated that she touched on them and it resulted in feelings of extreme panic and strong emotional outpourings. This finally gave Seth the opportunity to address this core issue. On August 2, 1984 from The Way Toward Health:

(‘I don’t know if I’ll have a session today or not,’ Jane said [to Rob], ‘but keep your paper and pen handy.’ And then she immediately began the session. Her words were loaded with emotion...)

SETH: “I bid you a sympathetic, yet hopeful good afternoon. Let Ruburt [Jane] remind himself that his birth was not responsible for his mother’s incapacity. He did not ROB HER of her own life by being born.

(In no time at all Jane’s Seth voice had moved closer and closer to tears.)

“He has no reason to feel guilty, or to punish himself for his mother’s situation. He did not MURDER her in any way by his birth. He is, therefore, no murderer or destroyer, or contemptible. He is not his mother’s murderer, then, in any fashion, nor responsible for the breakup of his parents’ marriage.

“He has no such crime, or crimes, to repent of, or to punish himself for. He is not therefore an unnatural daughter of the earth.

(The tears were streaming down Jane’s face as she came out of the session, and their flow increased as she cried more and more. She’d delivered her words in almost a grand sepulchral manner by the break. She sobbed, her face wet, her mouth contorted.

(‘IS THAT WHAT THIS HAS BEEN ALL ABOUT?’ I asked, meaning the years of the symptoms.)

I remember feeling totally aghast at reading Rob’s last words here. Well DUH!!! I wanted to say! How could you NOT have known?!? How could you not have seen what was at root, knowing Jane’s difficult childhood.... how dare you be so ignorant?

We All Bury Our Trauma And Hide Our Scars

But of course, Rob’s ignorance was innocent, unintentional, and perfectly understandable. Jane had masterfully buried the main issue for so many years. We all do it. We hide our scars, we bury our trauma so well – even from ourselves – how can even those nearest and dearest to us be expected to see and understand? Rob worked diligently for years with Jane and with Seth, trying to understand what was at the core of her physical symptoms.

Rob showed plenty of compassion and love for Jane. She had to show the same for herself in order to excise that last piercing shard in her heart. So she did, but the outflow of blood and toxins was overwhelming. Though she probably could have recovered, as Seth insisted she could, she chose to disengage.

Behind the highest clouds man has ever seen there are mountains and hidden coves from which all true proclamations come. Their sentences are silent yet they contain a word that releases and fills secret contracts between the gods and man, uttered long ago uttered without a word or a whisper and speaking for me alone with a magic note and a secret message and a sweet response known to me alone.

~ Jane Roberts

This poem, possibly – probably – the last poem Jane Roberts ever wrote, was dictated to Rob from her hospital bed. I particularly like its message in the light of the deep dream I had which began this essay because my dream also held “secret message and a sweet response known to me alone.”

I think maybe that word that “releases and fills secret contracts between gods and man,” may very well be compassion, as Kris has been asserting. Compassion for “Other” was a source of Jane’s particular enlightenment. Seth spoke of it here:

“The sessions, like life itself, have been and are a gift, rising from the immense, never-ending creativity of existence. Alone, they carry within themselves the splendor of unknown knowledge, and they arise from the deep founts of Ruburt’s [Jane’s] life, containing within themselves the neighborhood and world in which he grew, the power and vitality of the people he knew, the resourcefulness and energy that composed reality.

“Hidden within the sessions there is the splendid vitality of Father Trenton, his (Jane’s) mother, his neighbors and teachers – but beyond that the sessions connect and unite the annals of existence as he has experienced them, so that in speaking with my voice, and for me (voice quavering), he expresses the blessed vitality and acknowledgments of the universe, as even through the sessions the sweet universe acknowledges his own presence and being.

“And the two of you together also live within one life that expresses multitudinous voices, and sheds its own mercy, gladness, and joy, out into the world at large, enriching it, renewing the springtimes, and never truly ending.

“To one extent or another, Ruburt [Jane] then speaks in the sessions for all peoples, for the united psyches that overflow with thoughts and feelings that are registered by the wind, giving voice to the private, intimate, yet connected lives of men and women throughout the centuries – so that many people, listening to or reading the sessions, hear their own inner voices also, and feel the contours of their own natures, and universal nature as well.”

Compassion And Enlightenment

Compassion and love for the world was the driving force behind Jane’s work and her particular stage and/or state of enlightenment. Had she been able to show that same compassion for her own self earlier in her life, who knows what the implications of that would have been? Considering her genius, her talent, and her love as they were...I can only imagine!

This is where the force of Kris’ words begin to sink in, why the voice of my Essence in my dream kept drawing me back insistently to why it is crucial, of utmost necessity, to offer that same compassion to SELF, something that is the complete opposite to what most of us have been taught from birth – we believe in our inherent guilt, our shame, our unworthiness; that darkest, most deeply embedded, most secret shard that poisons us at our core, that holds us back from our personal enlightenment.

That, despite the cruelty of Jane’s early life, she was able to express so much love and goodness is a testament to the inherent goodness of the human spirit.

KRIS: “You seek to get in touch with your own stages of enlightenment. That is why compassion is important, because you cannot offer yourself such allowances but through being compassionate with your nature, with your creaturehood, because it implies and involves an understanding that even your fleshy being, your lovely cellular constructions are in need of a great deal of T.L.C.

“And that you may if you so desire, start recognizing that it is not by berating and belittling and discounting of your own human nature that you are going to attain any kind of remembrance of Essence and connection with Source, because Essence and Source SPEAK through your blood, your bones, your eyes. You are Expressions of Essence! Carefully study the implications of those words and remember your roots! Remember where you come from!

“And that is why you seek this type of knowledge, of understanding, because there is a deep original loving nature to who you are.”

There are Mondays stuck into corners where children threw them ages ago, so I gathered them up and washed them out and hung them up to dry.

The time winds quickly dry them out so they flap in the new morning sun, cosmic laundry.

~ Jane Roberts

A New Species Of Enlightenment

Finally, in the January 22, 2006 session, Kris offered a tantalizing possibility that changes are in the wind of our collective psyche, that we are at a point perhaps, of gathering up that cosmic laundry, re-washing it and drying it out in the sunlight of a new understanding:

KRIS: “NOW there is a different filter possible, one that did not necessarily manifest itself until this last century and that is a remembrance in a different sector of human experience without necessarily being covered under the guise of religious revelation, though this still occurs. But there is a new species of enlightenment and remembrance and it can deal with Source without immediately trapping this remembrance in the straitjacket of religious indoctrination and brainwashing. That does make a significant difference to the experiences now available to your species. Does that make sense?”

High in the secret mountains where the proclamations of nature come, I sense a new note full and free as a whole new world in some ancient sweet recipe.

The ingredients are glittering and golden and bright and filled with expectancy, and that note swirls curled inside nature’s world with the promise a salute, a new book to emerge up in the mountains where the earth’s proclamations are made.

And there is a wind, a rush and a power and a voice, a voice that says nothing at all yet forms new alphabets of life that glitter and buzz and swarm and shoot into fragments, jigsaws of light, sweet bombs of mystery that go shooting off like seeds of flame, with a fury and a power and a secret known to me alone.

~ Jane Roberts.

Jane’s Story Is The Story Of Enlightenment

Enlightenment is a complex thing, not to be put in a simple little box, or to say, “this day I have achieved total enlightenment.” It truly appears to be a process, an unfolding, and an awakening that you can’t measure out.

“Here Jane was enlightened, here she was not so enlightened,” feels wrong to say. The moment she had the guts to put her work into the world, to examine it, question it, process it, share it, discuss it, love it, hate it, argue with it, she became enlightened. Each piece of her personal traumas she dredged out of her being and examined in the light, was a process of personal enlightenment.

That she DID uncover those core beliefs, enlightened herself in that area at the very end of her life and then died is in itself a triumph of the highest order. The fact that she died then is not of importance. She lives, an enlightened being in that sense.

When you put together all of Rob’s notes, the years of struggles to understand Jane’s illness and why it manifested, and how to apply Seth’s teachings to it, you come to a very enlightening revelation:

Jane’s life story becomes the allegory, the single most important story, played out in mythological terms, in HEROIC terms, of all of the words that Seth ever delivered in any of his books. Jane’s personal story – Herstory – is the instrument of the music of Seth’s words.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


[Emmanuel Rocks! Very cool guy. Be sure to listen to his music!] * Active forum topics * Recent blog posts


The Holographic Universe and the Mayan Calendar

“We are in the midst of a collective transformation, at least at this level of perception, although I don’t believe it’s the one the New Age and others talk about. I would suggest there are actually two ‘transformations’ and one is a fake designed to mislead us. The year 2012 would appear very significant to the Illuminati and this is also the point at which the Mayan Calendar says there will be a transformation to a new world. The ancient Mayans, in what is now Central America, developed their own measurement of time and observed repeating cycles that they detailed in the calendar. They said that a Great Cycle began on August 11th, 3114 B.C. and would end on the winter solstice, December 21st, 2012, the point when a ‘Great, Great Cycle’ of 26,000 years would also come to a conclusion. It relates to the New Age belief about moving from the astrological Age of Pisces to the ‘enlightened’ Age of Aquarius. This is the moment when new cycles will begin, it is said, and humanity will be infused with love and light. A Mayan Calendar website summarized this basic theme: ‘There is no reason not to take a leap of faith into imagining what may be in store. We may trust that it is time for humanity to awaken in to a true partnership with each other, with the earth, and the Cosmos. By accepting this partnership we may claim our birthright and become Galactic Citizens who care for and sustain the planet, thus sustaining ourselves. This is clearly the challenge of our times. Yet, arriving just in time and on schedule is the Winter Solstice dawn on the day we may remember that we are truly Children of the World.’ At the risk of upsetting many in the New Age, I say this is the fake transformation. I have no problem with the fact that 2012 is significant in Time Loop terms, nor that the Mayans clearly had a remarkable grasp on the planetary and cosmic cycles they related to time. I just say they were measuring the computer program, the cosmic planetarium, and that the predicted transformation is as illusory as the rest of this holographic reality. It is another part of the DVD, another diversionary subplot. There is no time, and anything that identifies with it is not a transformation to Oneness. We are not ‘truly Children of the World’, we are truly Infinite Consciousness. Identifying self with the ‘world’ is identifying with the Matrix. It is a belief system that still relates to form, with being ‘human’, ‘Galactic Citizens’, and sustaining a holographic illusion we call ‘earth’. Millions are caught by the Matrix in the fake transformation. The Mayan Calendar is one example…” (David Icke)
posted by Sober Sometimes at 8:20 PM

...Beethoven...4 Peace...

Meditation and music open us to more expanded feeling states, states of deep inner peace, mental expansion, insight and awareness. Becoming absorbed in music or absorbed" by" music opens us to the beauty of sound and higher consciousness. It expands our mind and feelings. It leads us into deep meditation – taking us to its doorway. It has been said that some of the music of Beethoven has this capacity or taking one to this doorway of deep meditative experience. In his letters or correspondence Beethoven revealed that he had spiritual experiences that were behind his compositions. The sounds he created were an attempt to recreate this experience or communicate this experience to the listener. Carl Jung the great Swiss psychiatrist said that great music came from the archetypes, which are universal expressions or movements of our collective higher and intuitive minds; thus, great music expands, heals, makes us whole, and inspires. Great music should expand us and uplift us, as can the symphonies of Beethoven, as reported by others' experiences: The Third Symphony – can inspire the desire for inner meditation. The Sixth Symphony – can open one to the inspiration of Nature. The Seventh Symphony – appears to open the mind to deeper experiences. The Eight Symphony – deals with fear of death and the continuity of life. The Ninth Symphony – expresses life as a unitive experience greater than "I". The Violin Concerto – stimulates for some the sense of beauty and the mind. It has been said that classical music, and especially that with emphasis on string instruments, brings about "peace" of mind and an inner silence, which is the goal of meditation. It is valuable and helpful to feel the vibrations of string instrument in a tactile way, as with a tactile sound chair as in certain TactileAcoustic sound-chair designs, in which the especially the hands and arms receive these exquite vibrations.


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Nude people in town center could prompt ban

Complaints about young people who spend time in downtown naked have prompted the Select Board to explore an anti-nudity ordinance. Groups of young people have been congregating in a downtown parking lot and enjoying the warm summer weather without clothing, and that bothers some local residents. "A parking lot is not a strip club. It's a parking lot," resident Theresa Toney told the Select Board last week. She said she has seen repeated instances of naked people hanging out downtown. "This is a problem. What about children seeing this?" Toney asked. Vermont has no law against nudity, though some cities and towns ban it by ordinance. News that the Select Board had asked Town Attorney Robert Fisher to research a possible local ordinance drew a protest of sorts Friday, as five young men gathered downtown and stripped their clothes off in protest. "There's no real valid way to justify the banning of nakedness," said one of the men, Adhi Palar, between licks on his clarinet. "Nakedness does not violate any human rights whatsoever." With no law to enforce, Police Chief John Martin was taking a laid-back approach. "What's the harm?" Martin asked. "It's a problem to the extent that it bothers people, but we've always had it here." "We get calls and we check out what's going on. Even though there's often no criminal violation, we want to be sure there isn't a confrontation. Or that someone is not emotionally disturbed." A criminal charge might result if the nudity is sexual in nature, with the purpose of "gratification or the intent of arousing oneself or another," Martin said. Nudity has put the town in the headlines before. A group of women held "Breast Fest" in Brattleboro in the early 1990s, marching down Main Street with no clothing above the waist.

November -- The End of E-Voting

by Fishgrease That's right. We're approaching the end of ES&S, Diebold and Sequoia. Soon. The November kind of soon. So how we do that, you ask? It's safe to say that more Republicans will lose than at any time since HAVA. More Republicans will lose than at any time since computerized, programmed vote counting devices came into wide use. Same thing. HAVA mandated and paid for those devices. Who wrote HAVA? Lobbyists for the election device industy... that's who. Republicans will lose. They're politicians and think an awful lot of themselves (Democrats are too, but it's the Republicans who'r going to have to get used to this losing stuff). What are the chances they actually received fewer votes? No way! It was those damned computers! Need I say more? I'm going to. Flip wid me. In fact, Republicans will figure what's good for the goose is good for the gander. They'll be demanding handcounts all across this great country of ours, expecting Democrats to object. Here's what Democrats should do: Fuck'em! Don't object! I know I'm going to have comments saying Republicans won't lose, precisely because of e-voting. I don't think so. Sure I think it's possible. With programmed devices counting votes, anything is possible. I just don't think it is likely. Cheating with e-voting, if it ever occurred (I think it might have in select races) would only help if every race were going to be close. Hopefully, we're approaching a blowout, against the very people who supported e-voting and called us all wackos. If computerized vote-count fraud occurred in the past, or could in November, the people who say go or no-go on it will probably realize what grabbing 10% or more of votes illegally could do. People in the streets. Mass protests. If that happens, there goddamn sure SHOULD be people, A LOT OF PEOPLE, protesting... in the goddamn streets. So if Democrats do win big, why not kill two birds with one stone? Agree with the losing Republican candidates that there needs to be handcounts. Support their efforts, even where handcounts aren't provided, by law as the next step. Even I am not sure I'm right here. I do think it is something Democrats need to be thinking about and including in their contingency planning. We would do well to discuss it here. You gotta admit it's like Democrats to win and then say "Now what?". Make plans for when you win. Here's a letter to the editor I wrote. I've just received confirmation that it will be printed in our local small-town Wyoming newspaper. Think about writing one yourself. Wouldn't be difficult to write a better one than I did. I've a feeling that now's our chance. We may not get another one. If winning Democrats say e-voting is fine, we may never get rid of it. This country is headed for trouble. That trouble will occur on election day, this coming November. The trouble is the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). You have to love how they name these pieces of legislation. HAVA will help America vote just like the Clean Air Act cleaned the air (it didn't) and the American Jobs Creation Act created jobs (created jobs in India). The Herald's recent article on our new ES&S voting machines accurately described HAVA as resulting from the disputed 2000 presidential election. The U.S. Congress was heavily lobbied by the elections device industry and as Congress often does, they solved one problem by replacing it with a much worse problem. Like a lot of federal legislation, HAVA was pretty much written by ES&S, Diebold and Sequoia lobbyists. How bad is it? Well, it managed to couple the problems of fair and sensible ballot design with the intrinsic invalidity of computerized vote counting. Pretty darned bad. Very bad. In several places, including Florida and Mexico, there are now laws that ballots or paper vote records must exist, but those paper records cannot be counted by hand. The only recounts allowed by law in these places is feeding the paper ballots back through the same computerized devices that counted them the first time. Our new ES&S M100 voting machines are computerized devices. I'm a device programmer. I'm not the best, but I could write computer code that would not only change election results, but leave no evidence of the change. If I can do it, so can thousands of other programmers. Citizens of Uinta County, this coming November, your votes will be counted by a computer. Your votes will be counted, not by your local government, but by a corporation. The M100 and similar optical-scan devices differ from the now-fully-discredited touchscreen machines only by their means of input. Their output is routed through programmed devices, either way. Before our election, our County Clerk will verify, before party representatives, that the memory cards are blank. The only way this can be done is by plugging them into a computerized device, probably one provided by ES&S. The M100 also has an internal paper record, but this too is downstream of the programmed functions of the machine. The great mathematician, Kurt Gödel proved that self-validating systems cannot be provably valid. If the only provably valid election result comes by hand counting the original paper ballots, why do we have the machines? We have them because they were bought with federal money. We have them because of lobbyists. Change HAVA to APAH (All Paper All Handcounts). Then, give us back our Senior Citizen election judges and send the 17 year-olds home. We'll no longer need their computer expertise. This November, candidates Republican and Democrat will be demanding hand-recounts all across this great nation. Candidates, win or lose, we, the voters, would like you to do exactly that. You owe it to the people who voted for you. You owe it to your country. A note on that letter and the stuff about the 17 year-olds. This year, our county replaced ALL their past election judges (usually Senior Citizens) with below-voting-aged teenagers because "they are less intimidated by electronic devices than most adults". If you feel ghosts of Cambodia in The Killing Fields, you're not alone.

Monday, August 21, 2006

"I Was a Propaganda Intern in Iraq"

On Democracy Now: Willem Marx, a former intern with the Washington-based government contractor, the Lincoln Group. He spent a summer in Baghdad paying to plant pro-American articles secretly written by the U.S. military in the Iraqi press. ...

AMY GOODMAN: Can you talk about the U.S. generals involved and also the Iraqi newspapers you had these articles placed in?

WILLEM MARX: Yes. The process by which I passed on these articles often involved a bit of back-and-forth between myself and captains and majors in the U.S. military unit that I dealt with, and my relationship with them was very important to the company. I had to at times be diplomatic, at times be critical. And occasionally I would have to give up my editorial control over which articles were pushed through to the Iraqi media, because they had, themselves, received orders from above, from men like General Casey, who was the top commander in Iraq at the time and, I believe, still is. And General Casey said, “No, sorry. It's very important we publish this article. You guys make sure the Lincoln Group publishes it.” And lo and behold, we'd publish it, even though it would be something that I felt was, you know, not really suitable and would grate with many Iraqis reading it, who would think this is obviously American propaganda.

And, you know, the newspapers we dealt with, I think on occasions like that, were very, very suspicious, I would imagine, of who was planting these articles, where they were coming from, why freelance Iraqi writers would turn up to their offices and offer them $1,000, $2,000 to publish an article. And there must have been a huge suspicion from some of these editors that the Americans were involved.

And one particular article about the Badr Brigade, which is a Shiite militia, I'm sure you know, which General Casey was very keen to push, basically applauded the Badr Brigade for not retaliating against attacks on the Shia in Baghdad. And he was very keen to get it pushed out, and two newspapers in a row refused to publish it, because it was too inflammatory in a political sense. So that was a very interesting experience, having this senior, senior general getting involved in the nitty-gritty and wanting one particular story to go out, only to discover that no Iraqi newspapers in their right mind were willing to publish it for however much money we offered. ...


Disposed into twelue bookes, Fashioning XII. Morall vertues LONDON Printed for William Ponsonbie. 1596. A Note on the Renascence Editions text: This HTML etext of The Faerie Queene was prepared from The Complete Works in Verse and Prose of Edmund Spenser [Grosart, London, 1882] in 1993-96 by R.S. Bear at the University of Oregon. * TO THE MOST HIGH, MIGHTIE and MAGNIFICENT EMPRESSE RENOVV- MED FOR PIETIE, VER- TVE, AND ALL GRATIOVS GOVERNMENT ELIZABETH BY THE GRACE OF GOD QVEENE OF ENGLAND FRAVNCE AND IRELAND AND OF VIRGI- NIA, DEFENDOVR OF THE FAITH, &. HER MOST HVMBLE SERVANT EDMVND SPENSER DOTH IN ALL HV- MILITIE DEDI- CATE, PRE- SENT AND CONSECRATE THESE HIS LABOVRS TO LIVE VVITH THE ETERNI- TIE OF HER FAME. * ... Like two faire marble pillours they were seene, Which doe the temple of the Gods support, Whom all the people decke with girlands greene, And honour in their festiuall resort; Those same with stately grace, and princely port She taught to tread, when she her selfe would grace, But with the wooddie Nymphes when she did play, Or when the flying Libbard she did chace, She could them nimbly moue, and after fly apace. And in her hand a sharpe bore-speare she held, And at her backe a bow and quiuer gay, Stuft with steele-headed darts, wherewith she queld The saluage beastes in her victorious play, Knit with a golden bauldricke, which forelay Athwart her snowy brest, and did diuide Her daintie paps; which like young fruit in May Now little gan to swell, and being tide, Through her thin weed their places only signifide. Her yellow lockes crisped, like golden wyre, About her shoulders weren loosely shed, And when the winde emongst them did inspyre, They waued like a penon wide dispred, And low behinde her backe were scattered: And whether art it were, or heedlesse hap, As through the flouring forrest rash she fled, In her rude haires sweet flowres themselues did lap, And flourishing fresh leaues and blossomes did enwrap. Such as Diana by the sandie shore Of swift Eurotas, or on Cynthus greene, Where all the Nymphes haue her vnwares forlore, Wandreth alone with bow and arrowes keene, To seeke her game: Or as that famous Queene Of Amazons, whom Pyrrhus did destroy, The day that first of Priame she was seene, Did shew her selfe in great triumphant ioy, To succour the weake state of sad afflicted Troy. Such when as hartlesse Trompart her did vew, He was dismayed in his coward mind, And doubted, whether he himselfe should shew, Or fly away, or bide alone behind: Both feare and hope he in her face did find, When she at last him spying thus bespake; Hayle Groome; didst not thou see a bleeding Hind, Whose right haunch earst my stedfast arrow strake? If thou didst, tell me, that I may her ouertake. Wherewith reviu'd, this answere forth he threw; O Goddesse, (for such I thee take to bee) For neither doth thy face terrestriall shew, Nor voyce sound mortall; I auow to thee, Such wounded beast, as that, I did not see, Sith earst into this forrest wild I came. But mote thy goodlyhed forgiue it mee, To weet, which of the Gods I shall thee name, That vnto thee due worship I may rightly frame. ...

Current Issue Issue #57 ~ Sexuality

The Holy Whore Lustful and Orgasmic Farming Sacred Sexuality & Relationship The Dirty Little Secret of a Generation Liberating the Caged Female Human Animal's Sexuality Beyond Right & Wrong: An Inquiry into Pornography and much more! ... Issue #57

Download Entire Issue 57 (PDF 7.4MB)
* Related: Public library to pull progressive magazine from shelves, calling it 'pornography'

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Irish company challenges scientists to test 'free energy' technology

DUBLIN An Irish company has thrown down the gauntlet to the worldwide scientific community to test a technology it has developed that it claims produces free energy. The company, Steorn, says its discovery is based on the interaction of magnetic fields and allows the production of clean, free and constant energy -- a concept that challenges one of the basic rules of physics. It claims the technology can be used to supply energy for virtually all devices, from mobile phones to cars. Steorn issued its challenge through an advertisement in the Economist magazine this week quoting Ireland's Nobel prize-winning author George Bernard Shaw who said that "all great truths begin as blasphemies". Sean McCarthy, Steorn's chief executive officer, said they had issued the challenge for 12 physicists to rigorously test the technology so it can be developed. "What we have developed is a way to construct magnetic fields so that when you travel round the magnetic fields, starting and stopping at the same position, you have gained energy," McCarthy said. "The energy isn't being converted from any other source such as the energy within the magnet. It's literally created. Once the technology operates it provides a constant stream of clean energy," he told Ireland's RTE radio. McCarthy said Steorn had not set out to develop the technology, but "it actually fell out of another project we were working on". One of the basic principles of physics is that energy can neither be created nor destroyed, it can only change form. McCarthy said a big obstacle to overcome was the disbelief that what they had developed was even possible. "For the first six months that we looked at it we literally didn't believe it ourselves. Over the last three years it had been rigorously tested in our own laboratories, in independent laboratories and so on," he said. "But we have been unable to get significant scientific interest in it. We have had scientists come in, test it and, off the record, they are quite happy to admit that it works. "But for us to be able to commercialise this and put this into peoples' lives we need credible, academic validation in the public domain and hence the challenge," McCarthy said.


Saturday, August 19, 2006

In Dreams, by Mystiedawn

At night I dream of you, Coming to be by my side. I see your silhouette at first; I watch your calm, quick glide. Vivid images; Pictures in my mind. My night's love, my passion; All in you I shall find. Once again, you'll whisper to me, "Hello, my dear. " Your touch eases me, Removing any fear. Your gaze meets mine; The warm look in your eyes, It melts my heart. From now on Nothing but blue skies! Tonight you romance me; Our bodies entwine. You enter; I gasp! Our souls combine. A touch here, a tickle there, It enthralls me; I am captivated. Our bodies move, the motion constant; My body's completely activated. Throughout the night Our passion flows, Coming together, My emotion grows. For you, in dreams, Oh, how I care. But when morning comes, I am left in despair. Another night gone and passed. I awake in ecstasy all alone. For you visit at night; In dreams you come. And I dread the coming of a new dawn.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Amidst ecstatic visions Anarchy appears. She says:

Whenever you need anything, once a month at the full moon, assemble in the wilderness--in the forest, on the heath, by the seashore--for the state of nature is a community of freedoms. Recognize the imminence of total liberation, and as a sign of your freedom be naked in your rites. Dance and sing, laugh and play, feast on the fruits of the earth, the delights of my body, make music and love--for all acts of pleasure are my rituals. And I am that which you find in the fulfulment of desire. Abolish all authority, root out coercion. Share all things in common and decide through consensus. Shake off the character armor which binds and constrains. Let the wilderness energies possess you. Cast the magic circle, enter the trance of ecstasy, revel in the sorcery which dispels all power. But commit no sacrifices. Repudiate harmfulness, exploitation and slaughter. Rather venerate all creatures and respect them as different but equal to you. Total transformation thus becomes possible. This rite shall continue to be celebrated until Anarchy becomes universal.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Vita & The Mood Swing Cognitive (memetic) evolution now supercedes traditional 'survival evolution'... Traditional sexual attraction has been replaced by a new intention - the desire to synergize our cognitions (via linguistic 'hedonism')... more powerful than sexual lust, it's full realization is much much greater than root chakra orgasm, and a global free communication forum such as the internet is the physical manifestation of our collective desire. Reveltions came to me as I watched a video of a monk's self-immolation: People now sarifice their genetic imperatives - They will abstain from passing on their genes, in favour of passing on their memes... We are witnessing the evolution of evolution. The 'survival of the fittest' paradigm remains, but is now applied to memes... and the environment is our collective cognitions... We are the territory, and we CAN join together as equals! - Not all structures are hirearchical. The Mood Swing

Royo, Morrison, Osmon Speares

~ People are strange, when you're a stranger Faces look ugly when you're alone ~ ~ People seem wicked, when you're unwanted Streets are uneven, when you're down ~

Take Back Washington Helping to Unite All Political Parties Under The Banner of The U.S. Constitution

BridgeStone Media Group (BSMG) would like to announce the formation of a new political website in development,, dedicated to returning our nation to a form of government where the U.S. Constitution is the supreme law of the land.

Due to the groundswell of interest being generated by the recently released shock-doc “One Nation Under Siege,” Take Back Washington will be solely committed to finding realistic ways for Americans to collectively re-institute a federal government that is under the control of “We The People.” This new website will be a guidebook published by “the people” for regaining control of a government overrun with fraud, profiteering, and corruption that work singularly to undermine our U.S. Bill of Rights. Sadly, in light of recent corrupt elections and the nationwide realization that massive voter fraud on both sides of the political spectrum has gained control of the electoral process, it has become necessary to put into place mechanisms designed to return that lost control back to the American people. Take Back Washington will rally around every single patriotic American and statesmen who will be tasked with determining the best course of action to necessitate the restoration of liberties that have been legislated away by the very people elected to protect our Bill of Rights. Our collective and united voices must be heard so that the will of the people can no longer be ignored. Take Back Washington hereby requests original, action oriented op-ed pieces and current news articles from every American who wishes to see our country restored to the land of the free and the home of the brave. The Take Back Washington team, also known as BridgeStone Media Group, is planning to be in Washington DC for all manner of massive peace rallies and patriotic demonstrations that are being organized to coincide with the marking of the fifth anniversary of September 11, 2001. One such event that all are encouraged to attend is the 911 Citizens Court Independent filmmaker William Lewis will be attending some of these DC events while filming on location for his forth documentary, which will not simply be focusing on the loss of civil liberties in the United States. The current project will center on real actions that all Americans can take to regain control of their government. Any outspoken individuals who wish to voice their opinion on law or liberty, should contact the Take Back Washington team. We will make every effort to contact you and possibly arrange to put you on camera for the new documentary. Director Lewis was recently quoted as saying, "No topic will be taboo. We simply want to tap the pulse of the heartland and let every single American know that they are not alone in this struggle. We want to give them a voice, an outlet, and a unity of action that Washington, D.C. cannot ignore.”

The Take Back Washington website is slated to be up and running by September 1, 2006. Get in on the ground level of this project and be a coordinator in your region.

For more information or to contact the Take Back Washington team, please send your emails to:

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The Silent Woman to the Free Speaking Woman, by Sadia Arman

* How she sings, sings, sings. The music Like fountain water springs From her throat, Like the sound of a flute. How she talks, talks, talks. Unabashed. No doubts, No hindrance, Nor fears Obstruct her powers, When she talks. No sword has she, no lance. She cuts with her smile And razes with her speech, Then sticks in her flag. Glorious woman! You shall rule Sceptre-less and crownless. Speaking woman, Inspire all your dumb sisters With your Muse. Beckon us to the Spoken Word And banish The false Rule of Silence From This tortured land.

Transcript of Interview with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

[Thanks to Kevin for finding this transcript for me] AHMADINEJAD: (Translated.) "Basically, we are not looking for - working for the bomb. The problem that President Bush has that in his mind he wants to solve everything with bombs. The time of the bomb is in the past. It's behind us. Today is the era of thoughts, dialogue, and cultural exchanges." * Q: What did you expect to hear back from President Bush? AHMADINEJAD: (Translated.) "I was expecting Mr. Bush to give up, or I should say to change his behavior. I was hoping to open a new window for the gentleman. One can certainly look on the world from other perspectives. You can love the people. You can love all people. You can talk with the people of the Middle East using another language, other words. Instead of blind support for an imposed regime they can establish a more appropriate relationship with the people of the region. "

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Les Songes Drolatiques de Pantagruel (The Humorous Dreams if Pantagruel)

In 1565, 12 years after the death of Rabelais, there appeared a volume of illustrations entitles Les Songes Drolatiques de Pantagruel, ou sont contenues plusiers figures de l'invention de masitre Francois Rabelais: & derniere oeuvre d'iceluy, pour la ecreation de bons esprits ("The humorous dreams of Pantagruel, wherein are contained many figures from the master Francois Rabelais: & his last work, for the amusement of good spirits"). The original, for which none of the uncredited drawings survive, was published by Richard Breton, Paris. The exact meaning of the drawings is unclear, and has beendebated by scholars. Some claim it is political and satirical, holding, for example, that the likeness of Pope Julius II appears no less than twenty-one times. These are considerations for scholars.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Lightly Come or Lightly Go, by James Joyce

Lightly come or lightly go: Though thy heart presage thee woe, Vales and many a wasted sun, Oread let thy laughter run, Till the irreverent mountain air Ripple all thy flying hair. Lightly, lightly -- - ever so: Clouds that wrap the vales below At the hour of evenstar Lowliest attendants are; Love and laughter song-confessed When the heart is heaviest. * Blumenlied, (The Flower Song), inspired by Ulysses *

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Drew, Bucky & Jesus day

"Love is metaphysical gravity. " -R Buckminster Fuller

Letters from Lebanon: The Proximity of Death

Israeli airstrikes, humanitarian aid blockade, and the proximity of death in Lebanon Letters from Lebanon: The Proximity of Death by Barucha Peller (Calamity) Beirut, Lebanon, August 10th Death is close here. And some of us are not as close to death as others. The south of Lebanon is cut off from humanitarian aid. Here on the north side of the Litani River, the people in the south, taking the worse of the missiles and mortars of the Israel aggression, are always on our minds. There are whispers in the back of our thoughts: "How long do they have? How can we possibily get to them?" The roads and the bridges are bombed, cut and scarred. Israel has banned movement south of the Litani-any car thats on the road is threatened to be hit. UN convoys, ambulances, the BBC, the big names and those with Israeli clearances, have been hit. Now hunger hits bellies in the south. Their thirst must fit the water -there is no more. No medication for chronic illness, or for sicknesses caused by drinking polluted tap water in desperation, sicknesses that twist your intenstines and swiftly take the lives of children. There are massacres everywhere. How many deaths at once account for a massacre? Genocide? Monday night an airstrike in Beirut in the Chiya neighborhood, a place no one expected to be hit, killed 46 people. A civil worker sorting through the rubble at the site of the strike on Thursday held in his hand a list with 3 columns: names of the people dead, the people injured, and the people missing. There people missing, mute under the rubble. A single airstrike, countless deaths. All over Lebanon there are the lips, the caresses, the words, the fingers and the histories, buried beneath concrete and metal. The missing have still not been added to the death count, which is at 1056 and rising. There are massacres, everywhere. They are strong- the bombs. The windows tremble. You awake running. You sleep again with ghosts stalking your dreams, the children pulled from underneath cement, wire, dust. The city shakes. The politicians talk, they still talk, and people in their houses silence forever when metal meets flesh. Electricity comes and goes in Beirut. We sit in darkness, wrapped in cigarrette smoke, listening to explosions, feeling the dead gather in the air. More israeli flyers drift down from the sky. More airstirkes. If you hear the noise, you know that one was not meant for you. But the impact reaches your belly, ties you up in knots. The gas is running out. At night people steal it from the gas stations.Even if official humanitarian aid was risking traveling the roads-they would not have enough gas to reach much of the south. And the hospitals-how many days until before the gas runs out? Israel blocked two gas tankers docked off of cypress from arriving, and also a boat with aid. If airstirkes dont kill enough civilians, the Israeli's seem to be finding other things that will. Here in Beirut, its hard to tell the old ruins from the new ones. Here there is a collective memory of Israeli terror. Is this destroyed building over here from the decades before this when the Israelis attacked? This refugee here, asking for bread, eyes haunted by bombs- how many times in his life has he left his village, left his house, his family who could not make the journey, to reach the teeming refugee camps? What fear does he know? Another explosion. Leaflets dropped from Israeli warplanes onto the Chiya neighborhood, and in parts of West Beirut. Tonight there will be more bombing. The Israelis are stealing the stars from our nighttime gazes. The planes light the sky seconds before they strike, the birds chirp in response, a moment later life is over. The US will soon pass a deal to sell M26 rockets with cluster ammunitions to Israel. Death is close here. Inside these rockets are hundreds of grenades which scatter over vast areas and explode. Israel wants to aim them at Hizbollah rocket launching points. These weapons were responsibile for the deaths of countless civilians in the 1980s. What will people in the United States do about this? March in circles around federal buildings? The zionists argue that Israel is defending its right to exist. Even one of the international ceasefire conditions "Israel has a right to defensive strikes..", the same condition not given to any Lebanese resitance . Israelis right to exist, defend itself. 1056 Lebanese civilians dead. Civilians dead, in defense of Israel. Lebanese civilians must cease to exist, their bodies reduced to shreds, weightless ashes, or a collective scene of decompisition-so that Israel can exist. Not only men, women, children, babies, grandparents - but gas, food, water, roads, communities, children's toys in their bedroom's, books, photographs, hope, electricty, art, memories, schools, playgrounds, villages, cherry trees......all in defense of Israel. Hezbollah missiles have killed half as many Israel civilians as soldiers, and the total number of the two is barely over a hundred. Israel has killed over a thousand civilians, and barely 60 Hizbollah fighters. With such sophisticated euipment, this is deliberate killing. Because- who is Hizbollah exactly? Who are their fighters? Why do we never see the fighters on the news? And who lives in a "Hizbollah stronghold"? Are there parks in Hizbollah "strongholds"? Schools? Homes? People? Or just vast areas in which to harbor arms to hurt Israelis? The southern neighborhoods of Beirut, nightly hit with airstrikes, now crumbled rubble where homes once stood, is a poor shia neighborhood, a "hizbollah stronghold". Who once lived there? Who died there? Who is it whose homes are flattened there, who now sleep in abandonded buildings around Beirut? Hizbollah fighters who launch rockets into Israel? The same Hizbollah fighters who captured the two Israeli soldiers? Killing and displacing civilians, taking out their infrastructure, terrorizing their communities, is a great military strategy if you are fighting a group as grassroots as Hizbollah, when you dont know exactly who Hizbollah is. Maybe everyone inside Lebanon is Hizbollah. As Rios Mont, the vicious dictator of Guatemala put it while strategizing on fighting the guerillas during the 36 year civil war: in order to kill the fish you must take out the water. For this, hundreds of thousands of civilians died in massacres when their villages were pillaged- the "water" that kept the "fish" alive. An old man, a refuggee sleeping in Beirut parks, says Hizbollah is his heart. But he is not a fighter. While Hizbollah is the only one resisting Israel, they will remain in the beating hearts of those who have survived the airstirkes. And with every Israeli airstirke, support for Hizbollah grows. In struggle we have learned that it in only one moment everything can change, one moment in action can make the world a little better. And it only takes one moment for a bomb to fall, and in one moment life is lost. This is life here- the paradox of moments. Life is all we have. On Saturday August 12th a caravan ( made up of the civil society, lebanese and international, will head south on the scarred, severed, and threatened roads to bring aid to the isolated and cut out southern region. They are going without permission from the Israelis (Red Cross requests to not be bombed on their missions), and without the backing of political parties. Spontaneous mutual aid is everywhere in Lebanon, some walk for hours with 80 pounds of supplies on their backs, under Israel helicopter fire, to keep eachother alive . What will people in the US do? Will they watch TV, learn about Lebanese people as Dan Rather stumbles over the pronunciaton of "Shia"? Will they listen to speeches at protests downtown, go home, and smile at their children, grateful they are not the unfortunate Lebanese? Will they allow the Israeli ambassador to eat a quiet lunch in the shade outside a swank cafe in DC? Or will they begin to participate in mass, targeted, direct action? Will they blockade ports, roads, highways? Will they shut down universities and companies invested in Israel? Will they hold CNN accountable for its incorrect, biased journalism? Will they allow thousands to remain here so close to death? Note: The caravan on Saturday, August 12th, (mentioned above) was stopped on the road just south of Beirut by Lebanese police. The caravan was not allowed to continue on and had to turn back to Beirut. This might have been because the roads the caravan was traveling had been freshly bombed by Israel hours earlier. Barucha Peller (Calamity) can be reached at She can be reached +961-70-150247 in Lebanon

Focus on Sri Lanka: A Conversation with PK Balachandran (Part 1)

by Fr. Chandi Sinnathurai Aug 10 ... CS: I want to take up on your 6th point. I quote: "The international community also has no lever against either the Sri Lankan government or the LTTE." Are you really saying that the international community including the US and the UN have no lever either against the SLG or the Tamil Tigers? Are you also implying the Oslo-inspired peace process was really a cosmetic exercise on the part of the IC? What comments would you make on the SLMM [Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission]? What do you think their exit strategy [should] be before "September first" deadline? PKB: That's a good question and I need to clarify. A leverage exists in reality only when it is meant to be used or is used. Any leverage the international community may have vis-a-vis the Sri Lankan state or the LTTE is not being used or is unlikely to be used. Apparently, the international community has no real and deep interest in the Sri Lankan conflict or the solution of the conflict. It does not have the commitment to deploy adequate resources in terms of time, energy, manpower and finance to get the two warring parties to come to a settlement. It does not have the commitment to impose a federal solution as per the Oslo and Tokyo declarations. If it was interested, the members of the international community would not be saying, and that too so very frequently:" If you don't listen to our voice of reason, we would show less and less interest or quit. We have other more important things to do. We'll leave Sri Lanka to stew in its own juice. Sri Lankans are the losers, not we. " If the international community is really interested in Sri Lanka, it won’t be thinking of an “exit” strategy but a “getting in” strategy as the US did in Afghanistan, Iraq etc. However, what is possible is that the advanced countries of the West may indirectly impose some economic sanctions against Sri Lanka in case of war, with the intention of stopping the war. Shipping insurance may go up, aid may be reduced, a ban put on the sale of arms, and there could be travel advisories, which could adversely affect the tourism-dependent Sri Lanka. My submission is that the same things will not be done to bring about a political solution. That will be left to the two parties. In fact, the US has been saying quite openly that it is for the Sri Lankans to decide what kind of solution they should have. This means that the US will not push for the implementation of the Oslo Declaration, to which it is supposedly committed. One reason for this lukewarm approach may be the feeling that Sri Lanka is not yet that important for the West or the sole super power, the US. The other reason may be that the West thinks that Sri Lanka is India's baby and that it is India which must carry the cross. But there is no means to force India to take up that responsibility either. There is every reason to be friends with India now, given its economic potential, than to antagonise it by forcing it to do this or that. As regards the leverage against the LTTE, there is even less will or ability to use the levers. Non-state actors are difficult to control, especially if they are clandestine and well organised like the LTTE. A lot of time, money, manpower and effort will have to be deployed to control its financing and gun running. Right now the West is involved in controlling the Al Qaeda. There is little will to pursue the LTTE, which is not a threat to the US, or the West as such, though it may have been described as a threat in the ordinances issued to ban it. Imposing a ban or listing the LTTE as a terrorist organisation actually means nothing if there is no intention to apply the relevant provisions. The EU ban means little because it is only meant to go after the financial assets of the LTTE. It does not ban other activities related to the LTTE. India banned the LTTE in 1991; the US in 1998 and subsequently, other countries joined the bandwagon. But what is the net result? The LTTE has only become stronger in these years. One important reason why the West (and India too) is not putting adequate pressure on the LTTE is that the Sri Lankan state has not kept its part of the bargain. Colombo has not shown any inclination to solve the political problem underlying Tamil militancy. If the Sri Lankan state takes sincere, credible and practical steps towards a political solution, then the world will feel motivated to come to its help and twist the LTTE's arms if the LTTE does not go half way to come to an understanding with the Sri Lankan government. But looking at the way things are going now, I doubt if the Sri Lankan state will do the needful, and I feel that the international community may just prefer to watch the proceedings from the sidelines, stepping in only to discourage a full-scale war, perhaps. I cannot predict what the truce monitors will do. Apparently, the Swedish special envoy has told the LTTE that the EU's "listing" is not a "ban" as such, and so, the LTTE is not justified in taking the hard stand it has taken vis-à-vis monitors from the EU countries. The listing is very specific and is restricted to financial assets it was pointed out. While the LTTE is adamant on this issue, the Sri Lankan government is plainly telling Norway that it should not bow to the LTTE in this matter. There is therefore a deadlock. As of now, the SLMM is in the process of bowing to the LTTE because it cannot risk using monitors from the EU when the LTTE does not recognize them and may detain them or even do worse things, who knows? The SLMM may eventually consist of personnel only from Norway and Iceland. But Norway and the SLMM will have lost face vis-a-vis the Sri Lankan state, the Sinhala majority and even the Tamils and the LTTE. Both sides will begin to take the SLMM and Norway for granted. This hardly augurs well for the peace process and the political process (the two are different though inter-related). ...

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Orthodox Anarchist:: The Neocon War Chant

A Fox News poll conducted in May 2006 shows that only 24% of Americans consider Iran an imminent threat, while 63% consider it only a potential threat. Despite 85% saying they don't believe Iran one bit about its nuclear intentions, were Iran to obtain nuclear weapons, only 48% of Americans would support an invasion. Finally, only 35% of Americans believe preemptive action against Iran is necessary, while 44% believe it unnecessary, 51% opting for sanctions and 39% for diplomacy. Can Bush mobilize support for strikes against Syria and Iran? It is certainly among his administration's strategic aims. And with a clear record of "purposeful misrepresentation of intelligence" and a wholly gullible American polity which loses its shit every time something blows up... Who knows? The re-election of the Bush-Cheney team after Iran-Contra, the S&L scandal, and the Gulf War fiasco -- because of the "core American values" supposedly challenged by an Oval Office blowjob -- points to an America which suffers from a painfully short memory and a mesmerizing preoccuption with legislating other people's sex lives (abortion, gay marriage, sex education, television/radio/videogame indecency). Does it matter that the American military is already too understaffed to complete its operations in Afghanistan and Iraq? Did the military and intelligence communities warnings prior to the invasion stop Bush? Of course not. Just ask Richard Perle:
No stages. This is total war. We are fighting a variety of enemies. There are lots of them out there. All this talk about first we are going to do Afghanistan, then we will do Iraq... this is entirely the wrong way to go about it. If we just let our vision of the world go forth, and we embrace it entirely and we don't try to piece together clever diplomacy, but just wage a total war... our children will sing great songs about us years from now.
To be sure, we are not dealing with rational people here. Their designs for a New Middle Eastern Order cannot be disrupted by something so flimsy as the recommendations of their own policy strategists or senior military commanders. Rather, these are people who will out CIA agents in order to silence intelligence which contradicts their agenda. Yet for all its anti-Iranian posturing, the administration's intentions are still considered vague:
The question is how serious [the administration is on deterring Iran], and on that question the administration seems happy to create a strategic fog. Officials at the Pentagon say military planners are examining and updating a variety of contingencies for possible military action against Iran. But they quickly add that such updates are routine. As the Iranians were announcing that they had successfully enriched a test amount of uranium, the U.S. defense secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, dismissed the growing tempo of reports about plans to attack Iran as a "fantasy land" and insisted that the administration was sticking to the diplomatic track in its dealings with Tehran. When asked whether he had directed the Joint Chiefs of Staff or Central Command to update or refine the contingencies the military is preparing for Iran, Rumsfeld bristled. "The last thing I'm going to do," he said, "is to start telling you or anyone else in the press or the world at what point we refresh a plan or don't refresh a plan, and why. It just isn't useful."
Even neocon strategist Michael Ledeen, the staunchest advocate of Iranian regime change advising the Bush administration, has said that "no Western government — sadly including the Bush administration — has any intention of taking serious action against Iran." Nonetheless, Ledeen and his cohorts are cooking nuclear scare stories in order to mobilize public support for action against Syria and Iran. According to Larisa Alexandrovna at Alternet,
Military brass and intelligence experts have been watching Iran with concern since 2003, when the entire world was focused on Iraq. [Seymour] Hersh reported for The New Yorker: "Israeli intelligence assets in Iraq were reporting that the insurgents had the support of Iranian intelligence operatives and other foreign fighters, who were crossing the unprotected border between Iran and Iraq at will." [...] Although the United States had just recently invaded Iraq and was still by all appearances in search of WMD, the military civilian leadership at the Pentagon, under the leadership of the vice president's office, [did] not secure Iraq's borders, is alleged to have actively promoted propaganda about Iranian WMDs [coming across Iraq's borders], and began planning covert ops for Iran.
Alexandrovna notes that the US administration was looking for "a trigger" (a "new Pearl Harbor" if you will) that could prompt its intervention in Iran: "When I was told that Israel had begun a military strike on Lebanon, for me there was no question: This was the trigger." It should be noted that in 1996, Richard Perle, Douglas Feith and other leading neocon strategists co-authored Israel's own miniature version of The Project for The New American Century's controversial "Rebuilding America's Defenses" policy paper (the source of the now infamous "new Pearl Harbor" quote, which calls for the US to engage in advanced military operations against Islamic regimes in "multiple theaters" simultaneously). The 1996 paper declares Israel's need to engage Hezbollah, Syria and Iran, much as it is today. I'm left wondering, now, if Gareth Porter is correct in his assessment that,
In planning for the destruction of most of Hezbollah's arsenal and prevention of any resupply from Iran, Israel appears to have hoped to eliminate a major reason the US administration had shelved the military option for dealing with Iran's nuclear program - the fear that Israel would suffer massive casualties from Hezbollah's rockets in retaliation for an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.
Were the "barriers for entry" lowered far enough -- say by provoking a large scale attack on Israel in hopes of bringing about more resolute public support for action against Iran (particularly from the Jewish, Evangelical and conservative blocs) -- could Bush use the Democrats' soon-to-come troop redeployment (just wait til November) as an excuse to send an incapable force into Syria or Iran? This is somewhat a deviation from my prior thoughts that the Bush administration was prompting Israel to advance its own agenda. It now appears possible that they're prompting each other. Olmert's remarks following his May 23 meeting with Bush seem to indicate as much:
The Iranian issue was discussed, indeed, between the President and myself. And we'll continue to talk about it later. Obviously, there is a major threat posed, as I've said already, and the President said, by the Iranians and their attempts to have non-conventional capabilities and also to build up delivery systems and the ballistic missiles that can hit major centers all across Europe, not just in the Middle East. This is something that needs to be stopped. We discussed this issue at length, and there is a total agreement and understanding between the President and myself that there is a need to stop it. And we reviewed the different ways how to do it, and I am very satisfied with what I heard from the President and on what we agreed that we would continue to do in order to achieve this goal.
Though the Bush administration has stated previously that Syria is off the table, it is clear that the administration has no problem allowing Israel to do "Washington's dirty work." Whether this will lead to U.S. action in Syria or Iran, or joint U.S.-Israel action, or further Israel-as-a-U.S.-proxy action is yet to be seen. Unless Americans and Israelis both snap out of it and realize we're being marched straight into a trap set for us by Islamic extremists -- who we know are made infinitely more powerful by American and Israeli military intervention (which lends itself to impressions of Western imperialism and Evangelical crusading) -- we are going to very quickly find ourselves eating the shit end of the Armageddon stick. Peace is achieved by reforming American foreign policy to be truly just, bolstering reformist elements in radicalized nations, satisfactorily resolving the Palestinian question, and offering positive economic incentives in exchange for disarmament (instead of negative economic incentives, such as sanctions). You cannot achieve peace by killing civilians and radicalizing their friends and relatives. Likewise, you can only adequately confront Islam through interfaith dialogue, not by fulfilling the prophecies of extremists. Though radical Islamism is in no uncertain terms a real threat, by the accounts of even once-proud neoconservatives themselves, their strategy for engaging this threat has proven to be a collosal failure. Amidst this ongoing fighting, crosstalking, flagwaving and chestbeating, oil prices continue to rocket sky high, and Bush, Ahmadinejad & Co. continue to post record profits, while working families suffer and innocent lives are lost, in Israel, Palestine, Lebanon and Iraq. In the August 4 edition of Haaretz, Daniel Levy asks,
After this crisis will Israel belatedly wake up to the implications of the tectonic shift that has taken place in U.S.-Middle East policy? [...] Disentangling Israeli interests from the rubble of neocon "creative destruction" in the Middle East has become an urgent challenge for Israeli policy-makers. An America that seeks to reshape the region through an unsophisticated mixture of bombs and ballots, devoid of local contextual understanding, alliance-building or redressing of grievances, ultimately undermines both itself and Israel. The sight this week of Secretary of State Rice homeward bound, unable to touch down in any Arab capital, should have a sobering effect in Washington and Jerusalem. Afghanistan is yet to be secured, Iraq is an exporter of instability and perhaps terror, too, Iranian hard-liners have been strengthened and encouraged, while the public throughout the region is ever-more radicalized, and in the yet-to-be "transformed" regimes of Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, is certainly more hostile to Israel and America than its leaders. Neither listening nor talking to important, if problematic, actors in the region has only impoverished policy-making capacity. Israel does have enemies, interests and security imperatives, but there is no logic in the country volunteering itself for the frontline of an ideologically misguided and avoidable war of civilizations.
It is time for a different track.

UC Libraries Join Google Inc. Project

by MICHAEL LIEDTKE SAN FRANCISCO UC Libraries Join Google's Book-Scanning Project Despite Lawsuits The University of California is joining Google Inc.'s book-scanning project, throwing the weight of another 100 academic libraries behind an ambitious venture that's under legal attack for alleged copyright infringement. The deal to be announced Wednesday covers all the libraries in UC's 10-campus system, marking the biggest expansion of Google's effort to convert millions of library books into digital form since a group of authors and publishers sued last fall to derail a project launched 20 months ago. "We think this is a pretty significant step forward," said Adam Smith, the group product manager overseeing Google's book-scanning initiative. UC joins three other major U.S. universities Stanford, Michigan and Harvard that are contributing their vast library collections to Google's crusade to ensure reams of knowledge written on paper makes the transition to the digital age. The New York Public Library and Oxford University also are allowing portions of their libraries to be scanned. The project is expected to last years and cost tens of millions of dollars a bill that Google is footing. It's something Google can easily afford, given the nearly 8-year-old company has already amassed nearly $10 billion in cash. Google's motives aren't entirely altruistic. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company wants to stock its search engine with unique material to give people more reasons to visit its Web site, the hub of an advertising network that generates most of its profits. The endeavor has riled authors and publishers because Stanford, Michigan and Harvard are all allowing Google to create digital copies of books still protected by copyright. UC also is giving Google access to the copyrighted material. Only so-called "public domain" books no longer protected by copyrights will be shown in their entirety. Google doesn't plan to show anything more than a few snippets from copyrighted material a "fair use" approach that the company believes is allowed under U.S. law. ...

Friday, August 11, 2006

Muzical, Vizual, Mental Interlude

_______ _______ I Am in Need of Music, by Elizabeth Bishop * I am in need of music that would flow Over my fretful, feeling fingertips, Over my bitter-tainted, trembling lips, With melody, deep, clear, and liquid-slow. Oh, for the healing swaying, old and low, Of some song sung to rest the tired dead, A song to fall like water on my head, And over quivering limbs, dream flushed to glow! There is a magic made by melody: A spell of rest, and quiet breath, and cool Heart, that sinks through fading colors deep To the subaqueous stillness of the sea, And floats forever in a moon-green pool, Held in the arms of rhythm and of sleep. _______ _______ Off The Sky, Like Caustic Lights Bending Backwards

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Epitaph, by Dorothy Parker

The first time I died, I walked my ways; I followed the file of limping days. I held me tall, with my head flung up, But I dared not look on the new moon's cup. I dared not look on the sweet young rain, And between my ribs was a gleaming pain. The next time I died, they laid me deep. They spoke worn words to hallow my sleep. They tossed me petals, they wreathed me fern, They weighted me down with a marble urn. And I lie here warm, and I lie here dry, And watch the worms slip by, slip by.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Sam Seder, the last great voice of Air America

"Now is the time for all great men to come to the aid of their country." That is exactly what Sam Seder does everyday on Majority Report Radio. He aids our country. He points out what he sees as wrong and he tells the rest of us. He motivates, he inspires, and he puts himself on the line to bring us up to date. He does it with humor, and a sense of fairness. I've been blogging on the MRR blog for two years and Sam has never, ever tried to censor anyones words on that blog. He was bright enough to make his blog separate from that of the Air America corporation, which I have little to no faith of their honest intentions based on some of the very ignorant decisions they have made in the past. Air America has repeatedly made incorrect decisions as far as the shows and voices they allow to speak. Someone mentioned to me that one reason that the Mexican people are not standing down as far as getting their election recounted may be because so many of them are poor, starving, and basically only have their honesty and integrity left. That this country will need to see some serious times come into their own personal lives to have the gumption to stand up to big government. I agree. I'm ashamed of myself, and the American people who didn't stand up for the election recount in 2000 until it was completed. I imagine the powers that be expected us to behave in that manner. Let me be clear about who I am - I am not a Democrat and I am not a Republican. I htink that both sides are presented to us as slightly different, in order to keep us split as the public. The government could not handle it if the people were united. They know this. So they keep us split with a false illusion. A two-headed, one-brained evil monster. I bring up Mexico because allowing Sam Seder to be dropped from Air America is a matter of principle with me...He needs to be heard or else I feel that people will lose faith in their stregnth. I'd like to think Air America is working for change, but I'm not sure what their intentions really are. I do know this though, Sam Seder is truly working for change with his show Majority Report Radio. Without his voice the opposing side gets more fodder and more room for lying. I can't stand for that. He has managed to speak truth to power in every way he can since the show began. Tirelessly. DO NOT ALLOW AIR AMERICA TO FIRE SAM SEDER. We may not ever get the chance to stop a wrong like the 2000 election thievery, but we do have a chance to make Air America listen to the people who listen to their shows. PLEASE, come to the aid of our country and stand up to Air America. Tell them why we need Sam Seder. Send a quick email to this address and let them know how you feel, before it is too late and the people go unheard once again.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Quote by Roderick M. Chisholm

... thoughts are a "source of intentionality" i.e., nothing would be intentional were it not for the fact that thoughts are intentional. ~Roderick M. Chisholm (b. 1916), U.S. professor of philosophy (Brown University)~

Monday, August 07, 2006

The Discourses of Rumi

Table of Contents

Click on Chapter:


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Sunday, August 06, 2006

Mexico on verge of revolution as election tribunal rejects full vote recount.

[Thanks to Catharine for this link] * In a scene which was reminiscent of the US Supreme Court's rejection of a Florida vote count in the 2000 presidential election, Mexico's Federal Election Tribunal rejected a request by the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) and its presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador for a full vote recount in the recent election that was plagued by fraud committed by the neo-con National Action Party administration and supported by the Bush regime. The tribunal merely voted to authorize a partial vote recount of 12,000 of 130,000 polling stations -- 9 percent of the polling places. Lopez Obrador walked out of the tribunal session in protest over the decision.

Millions of Lopez Obrador and PRD supporters, including many of Mexico's poorest citizens, closed down Mexico City's city center last Sunday. The Mexico City mayor and the municipal administration are members of the PRD and Mexico City police have resisted calls by PAN President Vicente Fox to clear out the protestors. Protest camps have been set up on Zocalo Square and Paseo de la Reforma in the heart of the city. WMR has received information from Mexico that the country is on the verge of a popular revolution in support of Lopez Obrador.

Plans are being made for PRD supporters to occupy the Mexico City's Benito Juarez International Airport, the Mexico City stock exchange, the Federal Election Institute, and the Federal Election Tribunal offices. The revolution has already taken hold in Oaxaca state, where the supporters of the Popular Assembly of the People of Oaxaca (APPO) have taken control of a number of government buildings, police vehicles, public buses, and other facilities. Zapatista supporters are increasing their protest activities in Chiapas state. Chiapas and Oaxaca are strong centers of support for the PRD and Lopez Obrador. Protests against the election fraud have occurred in Xalapa, the capital of Veracruz state, which borders on Oaxaca.

The scent of popular revolution fills the air in Mexico.

The events in Mexico have triggered into action the covert teams of CIA agents working from bases in southern Texas that were poised to create civil unrest among the Mexican right-wing in the event that Lopez Obrador won the presidential election outright. Without even waiting for the contested election to be certified, neo-con PAN candidate Felipe Calderon received congratulations from his two NAFTA/North American Union allies, George W. Bush and Canadian Tory Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Already, pro-PAN agitators, paid by the Mexican federal government and CIA elements, have targeted PRD supporters in acts of violence in cities like Monterrey, Sinaloa, and Tijuana. Pro-Lopez Obrador protests are also expected in Los Angeles among the many Mexican immigrants in the city.

The 10 easiest ways to green your home

by Ann Archer Being earth-friendly doesn't require going solar or growing all your own food. There are plenty of easy ways to make a big difference. When it comes to the environment, being a good global citizen starts at your doorstep. From recycling to using alternative cleaning materials, minor changes at home can add up to real benefits for the planet, not to mention your own health and happiness. It may be a cliché, but the best way to be Earth-friendly is to cut down on what you consume and recycle whenever you can. The U.S. generates about 208 million tons of municipal solid waste a year, according to the National Institutes of Health. That's more than 4 pounds per person per day. Every little bit helps; recycling just one glass bottle saves enough electricity to light a 100-watt bulb for four hours. Here are 10 more easy ways to green your home: 1. Green up your appliances. Getting rid of that old refrigerator in the garage could save you as much as $150 a year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Appliance use comprises about 18% of a typical home’s total energy bill, with the fridge being one of the biggest energy hogs. If any of your appliances is more than 10 years old, the EPA suggests replacing them with energy-efficient models that bear their "Energy Star" logo. Energy Star-qualified appliances use 10%-50% less energy and water than standard models. According to the Energy Star site, if just one in 10 homes used energy-efficient appliances, it would be equivalent to planting 1.7 million new acres of trees. Also, consider what you put in that energy-efficient refrigerator. Pesticides, transportation and packaging are all things to consider when stocking up. Buying local cuts down on the fossil fuels burned to get the food to you while organic foods are produced without potentially harmful pesticides and fertilizers. 2. Watch the temp. Almost half a home's energy consumption is due to heating and cooling. * Turn down the thermostat in cold weather and keep it higher in warm weather. Each degree below 68°F (20°C) during colder weather saves 3%-5% more heating energy, while keeping your thermostat at 78°F in warmer weather will save you energy and money. A programmable thermostat will make these temperature changes for you automatically. * Clean your furnace's air filter monthly during heavy usage. * Consider a new furnace. Today's furnaces are about 25% more efficient than they were in the 1980s. (And don't forget to check out furnaces carrying the Energy Star label.) * To keep your cool in warmer weather, shade your east and west windows and delay heat-generating activities such as dishwashing until evening. * Use ceiling fans instead of air conditioners. Light clothing in summer is typically comfortable between 72°F and 78°F. But moving air feels cooler, so a slow-moving fan easily can extend the comfort range to 82°F, according to "Consumer Guide to Home Energy Savings" by Alex Wilson. 3. Save water. The Web site "Water -- Use it Wisely," created by a group of Arizona cities, lists 100 simple ways to save water. We’ll share just a few here: * Put an aerator on all household faucets and cut your annual water consumption by 50%. * Install a low-flow toilet. They use only 1.6 gallons per flush, compared to 3.5 gallons per flush for pre-1994 models. If you have an older model, adjust your float valve to admit less water into the toilet's tank. Of course, you don't need products to save water -- behavioral changes also add up quickly: using a broom instead of the garden hose to clean your driveway can save 80 gallons of water and turning the water off when you brush your teeth will save 4.5 gallons each time. 4. Clean green. Stop buying household cleaners that are potentially toxic to both you and the environment. In his book, "The Safe Shopper's Bible," David Steinman suggests reading labels for specific, eco-friendly ingredients that also perform effectively. These include grain alcohol instead of toxic butyl cellosolve, commonly found in carpet cleaner and some window cleaners as a solvent; coconut or other plant oils rather than petroleum in detergents; and plant-oil disinfectants such as eucalyptus, rosemary or sage rather than triclosan, an antifungal agent found in soaps and deodorant. Or, skip buying altogether and make your own cleaning products. Use simple ingredients such as plain soap, water, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), vinegar, washing soda (sodium carbonate), lemon juice and borax and save money at the same time. Check out these books by Annie Bertold-Bond for cleaning recipes: "Clean and Green" and "Better Basics for the Home." 5. Let there be energy-efficient light. Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs (CFLs) use 66% less energy than a standard incandescent bulb and last up to 10 times longer. Replacing a 100-watt incandescent bulb with a 32-watt CFL can save $30 in energy costs over the life of the bulb. 6. Save a tree, use less paper. You can buy "tree-free" 100% post-consumer recycled paper for everything from greeting cards to toilet paper. Paper with a high post-consumer waste content uses less virgin pulp and keeps more waste paper out of landfills. Other tips: * Remove yourself from junk mail lists. Each person will receive almost 560 pieces of junk mail this year, which adds up nationally to 4.5 million tons, according to the Native Forest Network. About 44% of all junk mail is thrown in the trash, unopened and unread, and ends up in a landfill. To stem the flow into your own home, contact the Direct Marketing Association's Mail Preference Service at P.O. Box 643, Carmel, NY 10512, or download the online form. Opt out of credit card or insurance offers at or by calling 888-567-8688, a single automated phone line maintained by the major credit bureaus. * Buy unbleached paper. Many paper products, including some made from recycled fibers, are bleached with chlorine. The bleaching process can create harmful byproducts, including dioxins, which accumulate in our air, water and soil over time. Finally, here's a third answer to the old "paper or plastic" question: No thanks. Carry your own cloth bags to the store to avoid using store bags. 7. Want hardwood floors? Opt for bamboo. Bamboo is considered an environmentally friendly flooring material due to its high yield and the relatively fast rate at which it replenishes itself. It takes just four to six years for bamboo to mature, compared to 50-100 years for typical hardwoods. Just be sure to look for sources that use formaldehyde-free glues. 8. Reduce plastics, reduce global warming. Each year, Americans throw away some 100 billion polyethylene plastic bags -- from grocery and trash bags to those ultra-convenient sandwich bags. Unfortunately, plastics are made from petroleum -- the processing and burning of which is considered one of the main contributors to global warming, according to the EPA. In addition, sending plastics to the landfill also increases greenhouse gases. Reduce, re-use and recycle your plastics for one of the best ways to combat global warming. 9. Use healthier paint. Conventional paints contain solvents, toxic metals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can cause smog, ozone pollution and indoor air quality problems with negative health effects, according to the EPA. These unhealthy ingredients are released into the air while you’re painting, while the paint dries and even after the paints are completely dry. Opt instead for zero- or low-VOC paint, made by most major paint manufacturers today. 10. Garden green. First, use compost instead of synthetic fertilizers. Compost provides a full complement of soil organisms and the balance of nutrients needed to maintain the soil’s well-being without the chemicals of synthetic fertilizers. And healthy soil minimizes weeds and is key to producing healthy plants, which in turn can prevent many pest problems from developing to begin with. * Use native plants as much as possible. Native plants have adapted over time to the local environment and support native animals. They also use less water and require less of your attention. * Focus on perennials. Gardening with plants that live for more than one year means you don't have to pay for new plants every year; it also saves the resources used commercially to grow annuals. * Stop using chemical pesticides. American households use 80 million pounds of pesticides each year, according to the EPA. These toxic chemicals escape gardens and concentrate in the environment, posing threats to animals and people, especially children. A better alternative is to try a variety of organic and physical pest control methods, such as using diatomaceous earth to kill insects, pouring boiling water on weeds or using beer to bait slugs. You can find more non-chemical pest control tips at the National Audubon Society's site. Finally, consider using an old-fashioned push mower. The only energy expended is yours.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Sir Real's Blog

Friday, August 04, 2006 There Will Always Be Those Who Thrive There are always those who thrive when masses are dying of sickness. There are always those who thrive economically when economic decline seems to be the order of your nation. There are always those who are clear-minded, even in environments of confusion. You do not need everyone, you do not need anyone, to align with your desire—only you need to align with your desire. ...Simply put: you’ve got to figure out how to feel good, no matter what. You’ve got to stop saying, "I feel good, mostly, but under these conditions; and that condition needs to change before I can feel better." Because now you are giving all of your power away to others who are making decisions about their lives, which have nothing to do with your lives. Can I not be affected by them? So, you say, "Well, how can I separate what they’re doing? It feels like what they’re doing has something to do with my life. It feels really connected to me. How can you say that it is not connected?" And we say, it is only connected because you are making it connected. So then you say, "So, what do I do? I put blinders on? I hide myself? How can I drive down the street without being aware of different people having different opinions about whatever is in the news today? How do I keep from bumping up against things that my emotional Guidance System responds to? How do I keep from feeling outrage or concern or blame, or guilt? How do I live in this world and not respond to what’s going on?" And we say, we would not want you to live in a world where you are not responding to what’s going on. All we are suggesting is that you practice who you are and how you feel, so much, that your response to what they are doing doesn’t become more of who you are, than your response to what you are desiring. What we are suggesting is, that you think so much about who you are, and what you are doing—that what others are doing that feels like it is happening in relationship to you—is a miniscule part of the picture of that which is You. We want you to be so grounded in your environment and attitude and Energy of Well-being, that when someone that you know contracts a disease, you don’t feel vulnerable, because, by association, you don’t superimpose their experience over yours. But you only are able to do that when you’ve practiced your own intent and belief in your own Well-being long enough that you don’t feel tentative. If you feel tentative, you’re easily swayed. If you feel tentative on your subject of your physical Well-being, then you are easily swayed into an Energy, or a feeling, of discomfort, and even sickness. In other words, it’s all about how you are projecting your thought—how you are practicing your vibration—what you are teaching yourself, vibrationally. It all depends on your practiced focus As we are moving forward here today, we will assist you in recognizing what the vibration of your Being is. And since nothing matters to you other than your personal, individual alignment with your personal, individual goals or desires, then that is where our work is. We are not here to debate the rightness or the wrongness of what you, or anyone, chooses. We are not taking sides, for, or against, anything. We are here to help you understand that, as individuals, your life can be as wonderful or as horrible as you allow it to be. And it all depends upon the focus that you practice. And therein lies the basis of anyone’s success: How much do I practice the thoughts that bring me joy, and how much do I practice the thoughts that bring me pain? Must we "allow" ourselves to experience pain? So, if you’re walking along in a body that feels good and in an environment that feels good, and you see a raging, fiery, hot stove, do you think that it would be a good thing for you to learn how to walk up to the hot stove, lay your body up against it, and survive? Is that what The Art of Allowing is? Learning to allow or endure the most uncomfortable of situations, but keep your mouth closed and don’t squawk about it, is that what Allowing is? Not even close. Allowing is: Walking through the room where the hot stove exists, and recognizing that there may be benefit from it, and utilizing that benefit, if there is. And if there is not benefit for you, then walking on by and ignoring it, understanding that others may choose to participate with it, or not. Walking through the room, having your experience with it, coming to your personal, individual conclusions about it, and then practicing thought that causes you, then, to live a comfortable life experience. And so, you say, "Well, Abraham, that’s a pretty elementary analogy. I understand the value of the stove, and I can see where it can serve me or not serve me. And I’ve learned my place with it, and I can extract the benefit from it. And it is really rare, it only happened once or twice when I was really little, that, in my not knowing, I bumped up against it and had a negative experience. So, Abraham, are you telling me that everything is like that stove?" And we say, yes, exactly. Every thought, every condition, every exposure to every experience. You can participate with it; you can receive positive experience from it, or negative experience from it, but you get to choose. Or, you can receive no experience from it. You can make it a vibrational non-issue in your experience. You’re not powerless in a power-seeking world Where humans get into trouble, is where they say, "But now I have to find my experience or my relationship with this stove (or whatever) and I want everyone else to have the same experience with it. I want us to join together in clubs and groups, and I want us to express our harmony about the idea. And we will form bands of protesters that will push against those who disagree with us. And eventually, we will sort it out on a world forum, and we will come to one agreement." And we say, why does it have to be that way? Why can it not be individual agreement? And you say, "Because..." and here’s the crux of your worry, "because I’m but one person with one opinion. And those that do band together in their opinions will run over the top of me. I’m powerless in a world that seeks power." And we say, that is what we are wanting to help you to understand: We want to help you regain your clarity about your individual power. Everyone has it. No one can ever take it away from you. No one can ever do anything "bad" to you. No one can assert into your experience. Everything, without exception, comes only by your individual invitation to it. So you say, "But, Abraham, I would not ask for something that I do not want." And we say, you do it all the time, because you do not understand the process of asking. The process of asking is achieving vibrational harmony with something. When you give something your attention and it becomes your dominant vibration relative to the subject, that is your asking. You say, "No, I’m asking for Well-being. How could not Well-being come into my experience?" And we say, because you often are not a vibrational match to Well-being. You’re finding too many things to fuss about. You’re finding too many things to be upset about. You’re finding too many injustices—too many things that make you feel negative emotion. Nothing’s more important than to feel good The only way that we have ever seen that any of you can use the Guidance that you were born with is by making this statement and really meaning it and coming to live it: "Nothing is more important than that I feel good. Nothing is more important than that I am consciously aware of the vibrational mix of that which I am giving my attention to. Nothing is more important than that I read the vibration of my Being in this moment, to know whether it’s a life-giving moment, or a life-squelching moment; whether it is the allowing of Well-being, or the disallowing of Well-being." So, Deliberate Creating is not so much about looking out into the world and saying, "Oh, there are things that are good that I want to create or attract into my experience, and there are things that are bad that I don’t want to create or attract into my experience." Deliberate creating is more about deliberate allowing. Deliberate allowing is more like deliberate vibration. Deliberate vibration is more about deliberately feeling good—deliberately feeling good. Feeling good: not because there is a reason to, and not because the president is making the best decision, and not because my body looks exactly how I want it to look, and not because everybody is treating me in the way I think I should be treated—but feeling good because I want so much to feel good, that I look only where I feel good when I look. "I stopped saying to the world, or to my mother, or to my daughter, or to my husband, or to my friend, or to my government, or to anyone, I stopped saying, ‘You need to do something different so that I can feel good,’" which is so disempowering, because you know they’re not going to do what you want them to do! You can’t get big enough; you can’t get enough bombs; you can’t get enough armies; you can’t get enough resources to make them think like you do! Your only path is to want so much to feel good, that you train yourself, thought by thought, subject by subject, in the direction of what does feel good, so that you allow yourself vibrational alignment with the Source and resources and circumstances, and events, that allow the perfection of your life—by your choice, to unfold. Individually, you are each such powerful Beings You are such powerful Beings! As we behold you individually, one by one, we say, you have as much power as the president of this nation for the controlling of your life experience. In fact, there’s not one of you in this room who doesn’t have more power than he does right now. The bombardment of ideas, the bombardment of perspectives, the bombardment of information, true and false, that he’s receiving—he cannot possibly align with Source under these conditions. You can. So then you say, "Ah, that’s worrying. He’s making decisions and he’s not aligned with Source?" And we say, his worldwide influence is miniscule in comparison with the billions of people who are individually requesting, from their personal perspective, what they desire. Your government is not the vortex through which your Well-being flows. The vortex through which your Well-being flows is within you! It is vibrationally felt by you. It is, if you’re wanting to put your finger on it, it is right in your solar plexus where your emotional center is. And so, reclaim it. Make this statement and mean it: "Nothing is more important than that I feel good. Thought by thought, moment by moment, I’m going to open my valve and I’m going to let the good times roll." A parking lot brawl, escalated Let’s bring it down to something that’s easy to get your thoughts around for a moment. So, let’s say that there are two people who have a disagreement that you don’t understand, that are arguing in the parking lot. And as you walk by, you hear their argument, but you are used to things going well for you. And so, while you couldn’t help but hear them, you wonder, sort of, how you even got there. You don’t give it very much attention. But someone that you are with turns and hears them a little bit, and says to you, "Wait up for just a moment." Now, your natural instinct isn’t to get involved in something like this, but you have another intention, and that is to stay with the friend, or lover or mate, that you came with. So, while you do not have an intention to get involved in any argument, in fact, that’s not the nature of you, you do have an intention to stay with this person who has other peripheral intentions. And so, it turns out that the person that you are with has had a parking lot or two scuffles of his own, and is only peripherally interested, so he just stops for a moment and as he listens, he hears something that stirs something within him, and now he feels that he must take action, because he can see that the big one is clearly going to beat up on the little one. And so, your friend now gets involved, and now you’re involved. Now, somebody else comes, and somebody else comes, and before you know it, you have a whole lot of people that are, sort of, gathered around this issue that really did not have anything to do with the beginning of it. But the more you listen, and the more you begin to talk among yourselves, the more you begin to take sides. And then you can clearly see that this one is right, or you can clearly see that this one is right. And now, because of your involvement with it over a period of a few days or weeks or months, or years, it begins to feel very personal to you as you begin to really relate to the issue. And so, you get these things activated within yourself. And so, that, in a very scanty way, is exactly the sort of thing that escalates into these culminations that evolve into world events. It is our promise to you, that if mass consciousness were not involved nothing could ever escalate to be something that is played out on the world stage. It would play out in the parking lot. But the more people get involved in it, then the more energy is around it, and then, the more large the events must come about. Twin Towers, 9/11/01, and culminations of Energies When your Twin Towers were struck by airplanes on 9/11, it was a huge culmination of energies that had been going on for a long time. But when you think about it, it was a very small representation; it certainly was not a world war; it certainly was not a world event. It was proportionate to the energies that had been stirred. But now, as a result of all of the attention that’s been offered to it, it is becoming a bigger energy. And it could not amass that energy, if there were not millions of people that are getting collectively involved with it. In other words, it’s just a parking lot brawl that got bigger—that’s all it is. But a leader of a nation… In other words, Jerry says, from time to time, "Why don’t George and Saddam just go fight it out?" [good idea] And Esther says, "Because Saddam would whup George, and then we would be in trouble. In other words, I’m not sure I really want the balance of power to rest on that. We will start choosing our presidents with different criteria, if that were the new rule of the world." So, that’s why, the two statements that we made earlier, we really want you to hear both of them. One: there will always be war, whether it’s in a parking lot, or it will be as big as you choose to participate within and give power to it. But second: Well-being is always the dominant Energy. And so, you speak it in terms like, "The pendulum is swinging." And we say, don’t make someone else’s parking lot brawl about you. Don’t become involved in it. Don’t let them bring you into it. Don’t let them make you use it as your excuse to deny the Energy. If you are really wanting to bring your government to the place that it cannot wage war, then don’t get involved in it and add your Energy to it, you see. It is so wonderful when you realize that you can be joyful without anybody else ever figuring it out. And that the majority of people, when they focus upon their own experiences, do live in joy. We would make the parking lot brawl, no matter how big it seems, a non-issue to our vibrational experience. And if everyone would do it, there wouldn’t be enough Energy for George Bush or Saddam to have a war. They’d be having a parking lot brawl. --(Abraham-Hicks)/webmaster-- Hope, Free Beer and Angels

Friday, August 04, 2006

You Get What You Think About, Whether You Want It or Not

By the powerful Universal Law of Attraction, you draw to you the essence of whatever you are predominantly thinking about. So if you are predominantly thinking about the things that you desire, your life experience reflects those things. And, in the same way, if you are predominantly thinking about what you do not want, your life experience reflects those things. (Worrying is using your imagination to create something you do not want.) Every thought, every idea, every Being, every thing, is vibrational, so when you focus your attention on something, even for a short period of time, the vibration of your Being begins to reflect the vibration of that which you are giving your attention to. The more you think about it, the more you vibrate like it; the more you vibrate like it, the more of that which is like it is attracted to you. When you understand the Law of Attraction, you are never surprised by what occurs in your experience, for you understand that you have invited every bit of it in---through your own thought process. Nothing can occur in your life experience without your invitation of it through your thought. Because there are no exceptions to the powerful Law of Attraction, a thorough understanding of it is easy to achieve. And once you understand that you get what you think about, and, equally important, when you are aware of what you are thinking, then you are in the position to exercise absolute control of your own experience. posted by Sir Real

Thursday, August 03, 2006

How Long Will We Have Together?, by Gregory M Ahlijian

[This is from Toni, who liked this poem since she was in her twenties]
* How long will we have together, to share a loving touch, a warm soft smile? Only the passing of days, weeks, or perhaps years will give me the answer I’m not looking for. In knowing you I’ll take what I know, share something new, and grow some more. I’ll offer you the same, something new, a little more. Our sharing will be an exchange of gifts, permitted by desire and not forgotten through time. And if, as seasons pass, I see you no more, I’ll not ask why or become dismayed. I’ll be content with what we shared, with what you gave. Strengthened and free, your gifts have nourished me, I’ve become a better person, I hope I’ve left you the same. Keeping your gifts, forever free, they will remain gently within, a special part of me. *

Peter Lamborn Wilson with Jennifer Bleyer: An Anarchist in the Hudson Valley

From (Courtesy of Wood's Lot) An Anarchist in the Hudson Valley In Conversation: Peter Lamborn Wilson with Jennifer Bleyer Brooklyn Rail (July 2004) It’s been nearly ten years since Peter Lamborn Wilson—née Hakim Bey—looked at the pitiably state-bound, rule-bound world around him and asked: "Are we who live in the present doomed never to experience autonomy, never to stand for one moment on a bit of land ruled only by freedom?" In a slim, rattling volume called Temporary Autonomous Zone, Wilson intoned that, in fact, freedom is already here. Autonomy exists in time, he said, rather than space. It’s in times of wildness, revelry, abandon and revolution that for even just one brief jail-breaking moment, as sweet as honey to the tongue, one is freed of all political and social control. Wilson rightly became celebrated as a kind of urban prophet. It was an identity to add the others he bears seamlessly and without contradiction: anarchist, poet, public intellectual, psychedelic explorer, artist, social critic, Sufi mystic. Six years ago he moved upstate from the East Village to New Paltz, New York. The setting is different, but the ideas have only deepened—notably his critique of global capital and "technological determination." In his green wood-frame house, trees rustling overhead and birds chirping outside, we drank tea and talked. Jennifer Bleyer: You left New York City six years ago and moved upstate to New Paltz. There’s a lot of art happening here and in the Hudson Valley in general, which seems pretty cool. Peter Lamborn Wilson: The fact of it happening anywhere makes it more interesting than a kick in the face. But the fact of the matter is that America doesn’t produce anything anymore. A couple of years ago, we passed the halfway mark from being a so-called productive economy to a services economy. What are services? You tell me. Whatever it means, we don’t make pencils. We don’t make cement. We don’t make ladies garments or roll cigars. We don’t even manufacture computers. In other words, we don’t make anything,, especially not around here. There are a few cement factories left up in Greene County, but basically, industry died here in the fifties. It was a long slow death, certainly over by the seventies. There was a depression, so artists, who are certainly blameless in this, discovered low real estate prices and low rents, and they started to move up here. And the gap between the artists and the real estate developers has gotten very small in our modern times, down to where it’s almost nothing. So for a few years the artists and their friends came up here and got bargains and moved in, and now artists’ studios in Beacon sell for a quarter-million dollars. And we’re talking about a one-room building on a half-acre lot. You want a house? Half-a-million. Do you know any artists who can afford that? The point is that there’s a lot of boosterism for the arts in the Hudson Valley because there’s no other economy. It’s either that or "green tourism," which in my mind is a disgusting term and something that I don’t want to see promoted in any way. It’s a commodification of nature, turning nature into a source of profit for the managerial caste in the Hudson Valley. That’s not the solution I’m interested in. We have all these knee-jerk phrases that in the sixties sounded like communist revolution, and now are just corpses in the mouths of real estate developers. "Sustainable development"—that means very expensive houses for vaguely ecologically conscious idiots from New York. It has nothing to do with a sustainable economy or permaculture. They talk about agriculture, they get all weepy about it, but they won’t do anything for the family farms because family farms use pesticides and fertilizers, which is a terrible sin in the minds of these people. So they’re perfectly happy to see the old farms close down and build McMansions, as long as they’re green McMansions, of course, with maybe a little solar power so they can boast about how they are almost off the grid. This is just yuppie poseurism. It’s fashionable to be green, but it’s not at all fashionable to wonder about the actual working class and farming people and families that you’re dispossessing. This is a class war situation, and the artists are unfortunately not on the right side of the battle. If we would just honestly look at what function we’re serving in this economy, I’m afraid we would see that we’re basically shills for real estate developers. Bleyer: Which is really the case in Beacon, I suppose. Wilson: Oh, absolutely. Dead Hudson Valley industrial towns reinventing themselves as prole-free zones and calling it art. Now, everyone I know is involved in the arts, and I’m involved in the arts, so what I’m saying here is a bit of a mea culpa. I don’t think that we can consider ourselves guiltless and not implicated in all this because we’re creative and artsy and have leftist emotions. Where are our actual alternative institution-building energies? Where are our food co-ops? Where’s our support for the Mexican migrant agricultural workers? Most people here are not interested in that. Bleyer: So where should people who consider themselves radical be directing their energies? Wilson: I think that a radical life is not something that depends on Internet connections or websites or demos or even on politics, like having Green mayors. This may sound dull to people who think that having a really hot website is a revolutionary act. Or that getting a million people to come out and wave symbolic signs at a symbolic march is a political act. If it doesn’t involve alternative economic institution building, it’s not. As an anarchist, I’ve had this critique for years, and experience has only deepened it. Here, there are people who are very concerned with trying to preserve whatever natural beauty and farmland exists in this region, and my heart’s with them. But I think it’s done by and large without any consciousness that this is already a privileged enclave. We’re saying that this is our backyard and we don’t want any cement factories. However, we’re not saying that we volunteer to do without cement. What we’re saying is cement is fine, as long as the factories are in Mexico. Bleyer: Or in Sullivan County. Wilson: Or Sullivan County. Although Sullivan County is fast reinventing itself, too. Bleyer: You mentioned hot websites. I’m curious about your thoughts on the web now, because ten years ago you seemed optimistic about its potential. Wilson: Well, I wouldn’t say I was an optimist. I was curious and attempted an anti-pessimist view. I went to about 25 conferences in Europe in seven years, and in all that time, I never had a computer or was on the Internet myself. I never have been. So I went to these conferences as the voice of caution, the one guy who doesn’t own a computer. Little by little, my talks at these conferences would become more and more Luddite, sounding the knell of warning about mechanization of consciousness and alienation and separation. There was a time when everything was so confused and chaotic that it was easy to believe that this technology would be an exception to all the other technologies, and instead of enslaving us, it would liberate us. I never actually believed that, but I was willing to talk to people who did. Now I’m not willing to talk to them anymore. I have no interest in this dialogue. It’s finished. The Internet revealed itself as the perfect mirror image of global capital. It has no borders? Neither does global capital. Governments can’t control it? Neither can they control global capital. Nor do they want to. They’ve given up trying, and now they basically serve as the mercenary armed forces for the corporate interstate—the 200 or 300 megacorporations that actually run the world. Fine. But let’s not call this radical politics, and let’s not call this liberation, and let’s not talk about cyberfeminism or virtual community. Basically, I’m a Luddite. Certain technologies hurt the commonality, as they used to say in the early 19th century. Any machinery that was hurtful to the commonality, they took their sledgehammers out and tried to smash. Direct action. That’s the Luddite critique—you do it with a sledgehammer. What it means now to live as a Luddite seems to me to involve a strict attention to what technologies one allows into one’s life. Bleyer: And I guess the Internet has really come to be the pinnacle of this hurtful technology, in our age. Wilson: Yes. You’re slumped in front of a screen, in the same physical situation as a TV watcher, you’ve just added a typewriter. And you’re "interactive." What does that mean? It does not mean community. It’s catatonic schizophrenia. So blah blah blah, communicate communicate, data data data. It doesn’t mean anything more than catatonics babbling and drooling in a mental institution. Why can’t we stop? How is it that five years ago there were no cell phones, and now everyone needs a cell phone? You can pick up any book by any half-brained post-Marxist jerkoff and read about how capitalism creates false needs. Yet we allow it to go on. Bleyer: But isn’t there something to be said for the subversive use of technologies? Wilson: We believed that in the ’80s. The idea was that alternative media would allow us the space in which to organize other things. Even in the ’80s I said I’m waiting for my turkey and my turnips. I want some material benefits from the Internet. I want to see somebody set up a barter network where I could trade poetry for turnips. Or not even poetry—lawn cutting, whatever. I want to see the Internet used to spread the Ithaca dollar system around America so that every community could start using alternative labor dollars. It is not happening. And so I wonder, why isn’t it happening? And finally the Luddite philosophy becomes clear. We create the machines and therefore we think we control them, but then the machines create us, so we can create new machines, which then can create us. It’s a feedback situation between humanity and technology. There is some truth to the idea of technological determination, especially when you’re unconscious, drifting around like a sleepwalker. Especially when you’ve given up believing in anti-capitalism because they’ve convinced you that the free market is a natural law, and we just have to accept that and hope for a free market with a friendly smiling face. Smiley-faced fascism. I see so many people working for that as if it were a real cause. "If we have to have capitalism, let’s make it green capitalism." There’s no such thing. It’s a hallucination of the worst sort, because it isn’t even a pleasurable one. It’s a nightmare. To Read the Rest of the Interview posted by Thivai Abhor

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

An Old Cherokee Story

From * An old Cherokee is telling his granddaughter about a fight that is going on inside him. He said it is between two wolves. One is evil ~ Anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other is good ~ Joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith. The granddaughter thought about it for a minute and then asked her grandfather, "Which wolf wins?" The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one I feed."

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Weary not of us, for we are very beautiful, by Rumi

Weary not of us, for we are very beautiful; it is out of very jealousy and proper pride that we entered the veil. On the day when we cast of the body’s veil from the soul, you will see that we are the envy of despair of man and the Polestars. Wash your face and become clean for beholding us, else remain afar, for we are beloveds of ourselves. We are not that beauty who tomorrow will become a crone; till eternity we are young and heart-comforting and fair of stature. If that veil become worn out, the beauty has not grown old; the life of the Veil is transient, and we are boundless life. When Eblis saw the veil of Adam, he refused; Adam called to him, “You are the rejected one, not I.” The rest of the angels fell down prostrate, saying as they bowed themselves, “We have encountered a beauty: “Beneath the veil is an idol who by his qualities robbed us of reason, and we, prostrate, fell.” If our reason does not know the forms of the foul old men from those of the beauties, we are apostates from love. What place is there for a beauty? For he is the Lion of God. Like a child we prattled, for we are children of the alphabet. Children are beguiled with nuts and raisins, else, how are we meet for nuts and sesame-grains? When an old woman is hidden in helmet and chainmail, she says, “I am the illustrious Rostam of the battle ranks.” By her boast all know that she is a woman; how should we make a mistake, seeing that we are in the light of Ahmad? “The believer is discriminating” - so said the Prophet; now close your mouth, for we are guided rightly without speech. Hear the rest of from Shams the Pride of Tabiz for we did not take the end of the story from that king. * El Vito, by Joaquin Nin Josephine Baker, J'ai deux amours 1931

Empire comes to Lebanon, by AIJAZ AHMAD

The U.S.-Israel axis goes all out to remove the last impediments to building a "New Middle East".

ISSAM KOBEIS/REUTERS HIZBOLLAH'S POLITICAL HEADQUARTERS In Southern Beirut, after Isreel's air strike on July 21.

LET us begin with a supposedly "undisputed" fact:

The official story, told first by the Israeli government and automatically accepted by governments and media outlets across the world, is that Hizbollah is a Muslim fundamentalist, terrorist organisation which periodically lobs shells and rockets into civilian population centres of northern Israel and that, in its latest outrage on July 12, it attacked a border military post inside Israeli territory, killing six Israeli soldiers and capturing two. Having waited several years for "the international community" and the Lebanese government to disarm this "terrorist" organisation, Israel is said to have been finally exasperated by this latest outrage and, acting in self-defence, it decided to retaliate so as to "break Hizbollah" for ever and ever, for the sake of the security of its citizens.

This official version raises some basic questions regarding the character of Hizbollah itself, about the very incident that is supposed to have "provoked" Israel beyond endurance, and about the scope of Israel's "retaliation".

The background to the rise of Hizbollah is instructive, as is its present role in Lebanese politics in general. There is a long history of United States and Israeli military interventions in Lebanon, dating back to the landing of U.S. Marines there in 1958 and including major Israeli invasions in 1978 and 1982, which predate the very formation of Hizbollah. It was in 1978 that Israel first captured a large swath of territory in the predominantly Shia region of southern Lebanon and held it as a self-declared "security zone" until a Lebanese armed resistance movement, led by Hizbollah, put an end to that occupation, except for a mountainside at the point where the borders of Israel and Syria meet with that of Lebanon, known as Shebaa Farms, which Israel has continued to occupy and which therefore continues to be a point of military contention between the occupiers and the resistance.

Hizbollah itself came into being some four years after the invasion of 1982, when Israel occupied about half of Lebanon, destroyed much of Beirut and oversaw the infamous massacres of Palestinians in the Sabra and Shatila camps on the outskirts of the city. In its formative phase, Hizbollah drew many of its guerilla fighters from among the relatives of those who had been killed during the Israeli invasions and, throughout its history, it has been based predominantly among the Shias who constitute roughly half the population of Lebanon, the overwhelming majority in the south and the bulk of the urban poor in Beirut itself. Until 2000, it was devoted almost exclusively to fighting the Israeli occupiers. After evicting the Israelis from virtually the whole of southern Lebanon, it entered into Lebanese politics as a party and now has 12 members in Parliament and two in the Cabinet; there are other forces, including wholly secular as well as non-Muslim forces, which are allied with it in a parliamentary bloc. In fact, the list of candidates for the alliance it led during the 2005 elections included five Christians, three Sunni Muslims and a Druze alongside 14 Shia candidates.

MAHMOUD TAWIL/AP A LEBANESE MAN kisses a poster of Hizbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah in Beirut.

Certain facts stand out in sharp relief here. First, Hizbollah is undoubtedly an Islamicist organisation but it arose not to turn Lebanon into a theocratic state; it arose as a resistance movement against Israeli occupation. That its mass base is exclusively among Shias reflects, in the first pace, the sectarian nature of the Lebanese political chessboard, based as it is on the constitutional arrangements devised by the French colonial authority before its departure, in which every party, except the Left parties, represents an ethnic and/or religious grouping. Moreover, this mass base is owed also to the fact that Shias were the vast majority who lived under Israeli occupation and who inhabit the slums of Beirut.

Second, perhaps the majority of the Lebanese look upon it as a movement of anti-colonial resistance, so that the U.S.-Israeli-British characterisation of it as "terrorist" falls on deaf ears.

Third, Hizbollah certainly arose as a guerilla force but, through an evolution and expansion over two decades, it has become an influential political party in Parliament and the Cabinet, while it also maintains a militia which fights Israel over the little sliver of Lebanese territory which is still occupied. There is no history of Hizbollah ever committing violence against a Lebanese citizen, and though a Christian militia, known as the Southern Lebanon Army (SLA), fought alongside the Israelis during 22 years of full-scale occupation of Lebanon, Hizbollah undertook no acts of revenge or retribution against that client force after its Israeli masters had been forced to withdraw. Most of the fire between Israel and Hizbollah is exchanged not over northern Israel, as the global propaganda machine would have us believe, but over the Shebaa Farms which Israel occupies and which Lebanon considers its own (Syria also claims that little patch of a mountainside).

As for the incident of July 12 which is said to have "provoked" Israel into attacking Lebanon, the primary fact is that Israel holds in its prisons hundreds of Lebanese nationals, most of whom it does not acknowledge and many of whom have been held for well over a decade - not to speak of some 10,000 Palestinians who are currently held in Israeli prisons. Hizbollah is always on the lookout to capture Israelis so that it can then exchange them for some of Israel's Arab prisoners. Such prisoner exchanges have happened in the past, and the current Israeli claim that it does not exchange prisoners is a straightforward lie.

As for the incident of July 12 itself, when Hizbollah is supposed to have attacked a military post inside Isreal, there is reason to be sceptical.

ABDELJALIL BOUNHAR/AP IN THE MOROCCAN capital of Rabat, a protest against Israeli aggression.

The initial report filed by Agence France-Presse (AFP) actually said that "According to the Lebanese police force, the two Israeli soldiers were captured in Lebanese territory, in the area of Aitaa al-Chaab, near to the border with Israel, where an Israeli unit had penetrated in middle of morning."

The Associated Press (AP) gave the same version on July 12: "The militant group Hizbollah captured two Israeli soldiers during clashes Wednesday across the border in southern Lebanon, prompting a swift reaction from Israel, which sent ground forces into its neighbour to look for them. The forces were trying to keep the soldiers' captors from moving them deeper into Lebanon, Israeli government officials said on condition of anonymity."

This was also the account published in The Hindustan Times the same day: "The Lebanese Shi'ite Hizbollah movement announced on Wednesday that its guerillas have captured two Israeli soldiers in southern Lebanon. `Implementing our promise to free Arab prisoners in Israeli jails, our strugglers have captured two Israeli soldiers in southern Lebanon,' a statement by Hizbollah said. `The two soldiers have already been moved to a safe place,' it added. The Lebanese police said that the two soldiers were captured as they `infiltrated' into the town of Aitaa al-Chaab inside the Lebanese border."

This line of reporting was completely suppressed after Israel put forward its claim that it was Hizbollah that had attacked its territory, killed its soldiers and kidnapped two others, so that it could claim to be attacking Lebanon in retaliation. We do know that an Israeli tank got blown up in Lebanese territory in the course of that incident. Israelis claim that they had sent that tank to chase the Hizbollah guerillas who had kidnapped Israeli soldiers. Hizbollah, by contrast, claims that the tank was part of the Israeli incursion into Lebanon, got blown up by a landmine, and Israeli soldiers were taken prisoner after a gun battle. Hizbollah's version seems more credible in the light of the reports we have quoted above.

Israel "Retaliates"

Two soldiers taken prisoner - on Israeli territory, let us grant for arguments' sake.

Israel responds by bombing three runways and fuel depots of Beirut International Airport, all the country's seaports, most highways and roads connecting various parts of the country as well as those leading to Syria, tens of bridges in Lebanon's south and east, factories, army bases, trucks, ambulances, hospitals, schools, television transmitters, the whole of southern Beirut, Sidon, Tyre, Baalbek, other towns, other villages. Six hundred dead, thousands injured. Half a million refugees in the first week. Eight hundred thousand by the end of the second week. At the time of writing, on July 27, one out of five Lebanese citizens has been rendered homeless. Tens of billions of dollars of damage inflicted upon a tiny country, one of the most beautiful and vibrant on this planet of ours, which had only recently pulled itself out, gloriously and with great aesthetic finesse, out of the devastations of a civil war and foreign - Israeli! - occupation. "Lebanon has been put back 20 years," an Israeli general exults on television. Precisely. Because Hizbollah took two prisoners and wanted to exchange them for some Lebanese prisoners in Israeli jails.

Tzipi Livni, the glamorously dressed Israeli Vice-Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, sits in the glare of television cameras and justifies the carnage in suave tones, invoking the "axis of terror and hate created by Iran, Syria, Hizbollah and Hamas that want to end any hope for peace". She says that the best way to retrieve the two captured soldiers "is to destroy totally the international airport of Beirut", so that they are not taken out of Lebanon. "But they can sneak them away in a car," her interlocutor says. "Oh, indeed," says the Israeli Foreign Minister, "This is why we also destroy all the roads in Lebanon leading out of the country." And, one would suppose that a fifth of the Lebanese population is rendered homeless so that Hizbollah has no buildings left to hide those two soldiers; once all the buildings are gone, the Israeli Army will then find those two soldiers, just sitting somewhere out in the open, and bring them home.

It is difficult to say just when the planning for this war began. We know that for well over a year now, senior military officers have been giving a Power Point presentation, the "Three-Week War," to their U.S. counterparts, U.S. think-tanks and pro-Israeli members of the U.S. Congress, selected European diplomats and journalists, spelling out the plans for what is now unfolding. We do not know who was behind the assassination of Rafik Hariri, the former Lebanese Prime Minister, in February 2005, but we do know that the assassination was used by the U.S.-Israeli axis to obtain the withdrawal of the Syrian forces from Lebanon (who had come there initially on U.S. and Saudi Arabian promptings, to save Lebanon from the secular Left) and to get the U.N. Security Council to pass a resolution calling for the disarming of Hizbollah.

But who in Lebanon was going to be strong enough to disarm Lebanon's most popular political entity? Not the Lebanese government, overwhelmingly inclined towards the U.S.-Saudi-Israeli axis but too weak internally and also much too dependent on Hizbollah itself. So, with the Syrians gone, Israel may itself return, take care of Hizbollah, turn Lebanon into the kind of Israeli protectorate that Jordan already is, and re-occupy southern Lebanon, as in days of yore before Hizbollah threw them out, and re-create there a "security zone" alongside northern Israel, as Amir Peretz, the Labour Party chief and the current Defence Minister of Israel, said a couple of days ago - right up to the Litani river, some 32 km into Lebanese territory, whose water resources Israel covets.

If that were to come to pass, Israel would have achieved all the aims it has been pursuing in Lebanon since the invasions of 1978 and 1982. At that time, the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) had established its headquarters, camps and institutions in Lebanon, after it had been evicted out of Jordan in 1971, and getting the PLO to leave Lebanon was a major aim, which was realised after the blitzkrieg of 1982 when the U.S. brokered Yasser Arafat's departure to Tunis. However, Syrian forces were already in Lebanon, invited initially by that same Israeli-U.S.-Saudi axis. Israel shot down about a 100 Syrian airplanes during that invasion but the Syrian ground troops remained, and a sort of truce came in force. Syria would continue to occupy its positions but it would also not directly challenge Israel's right to occupy southern Lebanon, while the government in Beirut remained weak in relation to both neighbouring - and occupying - powers.

Hizbollah arose out of this crucible, with the single aim of throwing out the Israelis, and therefore aligned itself with Syria - with converging interests but by no means a creature of Syria, which initially backed not Hizbollah but Amal, a much less militant Shia organisation. Israel could in any case not turn Lebanon into a protectorate at that time, given the Syrian presence on Lebanese territory and major Lebanese elite interests aligned with it.

Since its very inception in 1948, Israel is used to capturing Arab territory and retaining it. The state was created by an act of the U.N. and it immediately proceeded to capture much more territory than it was granted; today's Israel, which most governments of the world recognise, includes that additional occupied territory. In the Six-Day War of 1967, it captured the rest of Palestine and has refused to vacate even an inch of it, despite all the heroic resistance that the Palestinians have mounted; the "disengagement" from Gaza has simply meant turning it all into a mass prison and daily military attacks, which take dozens of Palestinian lives each week. It also captured the Syrian territory of the Golan Heights and never returned it, despite all sorts of Syrian overtures and offers. It returned the Sinai peninsula to Egypt only when Egypt bent down on its knees, recognised it, opened itself up to it, took itself out of any Arab resistance to the Zionist design, and in effect became an ally; after Israel launched its ongoing destruction of Lebanon, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak denounced Hizbollah and, pro forma, requested Israel for some restraint.

Hizbollah has been thus far, in some 60 years of Israeli settler-colonial enterprise, the only entity which has through armed resistance forced the Israelis to relinquish any territory that the Jewish state has ever captured. For that unforgivable sin Hizbollah must be punished and destroyed, and Israel's original plan to turn Lebanon into a dependency be implemented, just as brutally as it was attempted in 1978 and 1982.

The Present Context

The historical moment now is auspicious for Israel, in terms of the enormous shifts that have taken place in global politics. Under the guise of the "war on terror", the U.S. is determined to undo whatever losses it had to incur in the days of the Soviet Union-aligned Arab nationalist regimes, and after the fall of the Shah in Iran. Within this larger context, Israel can again make a bid to dominate permanently the entire landmass from the Euphrates to the Nile, and from the shores of the Red Sea to the Turkish border - all the Arab lands, in short, which were once part of the Ottoman Empire. Most of the key Arab governments - those of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and so on - have already been secured for the U.S.-Israeli axis; Libya has been tamed and, with the fall of Iraq, another major adversary is gone. Britain is now fully a part of the U.S.-Israeli axis, and aside from those two countries, British Prime Minister Tony Blair was the only one defying the global call for an immediate ceasefire in Lebanon after what Israel has wrought.

In Germany, we now have a government more closely aligned with the U.S. than any since the days of Chancellor Konrad Adenaur. French President Jacques Chirac regrets that he distanced France from the U.S. plan of action during the invasion of Iraq in 2003, and he has been trying to undo his sin ever since. France was therefore a partner of the U.S. in engineering the coup in Haiti that overthrew President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and was again a key player in getting the U.N. Security Council to pass a resolution demanding the departure of Syrian troops from Lebanon and the disarming of Hizbollah. Russia, China and India - strutting like giants in Asia, acting like pygmies in international affairs - issue prim little protests against the killing of four U.N. personnel in Israeli shelling but keep their mouths shut about a fifth of the Lebanese population being made homeless in less than two weeks.

And there is the historical moment within Israel itself. When Ariel Sharon, as Defence Minister, invaded Lebanon in 1982, 20,000 Israelis demonstrated against it and hundreds of serving soldiers and officers joined the protests, some returning their medals won for bravery in previous wars. Now, as the new invasion from the air unfolded, the anti-war demonstration attracted barely 800. Even the pretence of a two-party system no longer functions in Israel. If Sharon ruled Israel as a leader of Likud with Labour in his coalition and under his wing, the new government of Ehud Olmert, a favourite of Sharon, has the Labour chief Amir Peretz, a Sephardic Jew and the grand hope of the Zionist left, as his Defence Minister, executing these policies of mass destruction not just in Lebanon but also in Gaza. With the moral sentiments of most of the population made coarse by decades of occupying other people's lands and killing anyone who resists, virtually the whole nation supports the atrocities in Gaza and Lebanon. Ilan Pappe, a distinguished Israeli historian and commentator, estimates that some 80 per cent of the members of the Knesset have been elected on what he calls "the race ticket". The result is that the marginalised minority in Israel which still keeps alive in its hearts the sense of injustice toward Palestinian victims and the spiritual vision of a different kind of Judaism is condemned to intensities of a moral loneliness which is difficult to imagine for an outsider.

With the exception of parties dominated by the Arab citizens of Israel, all others are agreed that there shall be no withdrawal from all the territories that Israel occupied in 1967, no right of return given to Palestinians uprooted from their homes by Israel's wars, and no equality of citizenship between Jewish and non-Jewish citizens of Israel. Kadima, the ruling party, fought the recent elections and won 29 seats on a platform which promised that Israel would retain in perpetuity all the major settlements established after the conquest of the West Bank and the bulk of the territories occupied in 1967. Avigdor Lieberman's party, Israel Our Home, won 11 seats and comprises one of the larger blocs in Parliament on the platform that calls for denying to current Israeli citizens "the right to live in the state on the grounds of religion and race" - a clear promise that, if elected to form the government, Lieberman would no longer allow Muslim and Christian Arab citizens to reside in Israel.

According to a poll published in March 2006 in Haaretz, Israel's most prestigious newspaper, more than two-thirds of Israeli Jews stated that they would not live in the same building with the Palestinian citizens of Israel and 40 per cent believed that "the state needs to support the emigration of Arab citizens". With this kind of mentality rampant in the nation, the Israeli state, a regional superpower whose military might dwarfs all other states in the region, feels free to kill and burn as much as it wishes.

"New Middle East"

Behind this historical moment there lies that vision of "the New Middle East" that Condoleezza Rice now mentions in every speech that she delivers on affairs of that region. Risen from the corporate offices of Chevron and the petrodollar industry in general, and serving these days as the U.S. Secretary of State, she dismisses all the destruction of Lebanon over the past two weeks as the "birth-pangs of the New Middle East". As late as July 23 when a sixth of the Lebanese population had been rendered homeless, she dismissed the idea of a ceasefire, saying "we have to be certain that we are pushing forward to the New Middle East, not going back to the old one", while President George W. Bush has openly said that he will give Israel all the time and latitude it requires to annihilate Hizbollah. The phrase seems to have become something of a mantra but one may well ask: what, precisely, is this "New Middle East"?

A large number of documents exist written by U.S. rightwing radicals - some of them neoconservative - which spell out the project in great detail, and many of these thinkers and doers of the far right, such as Richard Perle and Douglas Feith, have divided their time between occupying high places in the U.S. government and working for high Israeli officials. The power of the "Israeli lobby" has been much in the news recently because two mainstream Professors from Harvard University and the University of Chicago published a lengthy article documenting that power. There is, in addition, close cooperation between elite U.S. think-tanks and their Israeli counterparts.

The ensuing vision of the "New Middle East" has some key features. In country after country, client regimes are to be imposed, with the force of arms if necessary, on the model of Afghanistan. In the larger countries, such as Iran, violent overthrow of the existing government is envisioned as a prelude to not only the imposition of a client regime but also the break-up of the country along ethnic and denominational lines, as is now unfolding in Iraq; Saudi Arabia itself may be up for such a break-up if the anti-monarchical insurgency cannot be contained within existing political and territorial parameters.

The "rollback of Syria", a favourite phrase of the neocons, has begun with the assassination of Hariri and the forced withdrawal of Syrian forces from Lebanon; Hizbollah is seen as a strategic ally of Syria and its destruction is sought on its own merits as well as in the campaign for that "rollback". As the Iraqi insurgency spreads in provinces adjoining the Syrian border, the urgency to control Syria increases, and President Bashar al-Assad is being told that he can save his skin, and save Syria from invasion, if he cooperates with the U.S.-Israeli axis in Iraq and Lebanon, and if he breaks his alliance with Iran. Part of the demands on Syria is that it cooperate in the construction of an oil pipeline from Kirkuk in Iraqi Kurdistan to Israel, through Syrian territory - this, while Israel continues to occupy Syrian territory in the Golan.

The U.S.-Israeli axis perceives two types of remaining impediments. At the level of state formation, only the regimes of Iran and Syria remain which are to any degree still independent, though both have cooperated with the U.S., notably in Iraq where the U.S.-sponsored and Shia-dominated regime would have been impossible without extensive collusion on the part of Iran. Syria has likewise provided key information to the U.S. in its pursuit of the Iraqi resistance and has even hosted the U.S. offshore torture chambers. Yet, both have their own distinct national interests which clash with those of the U.S. and Israel, and a complicated game of coercion and concession is being played, but with the aim of emasculating both, with "regime change" and even invasion looming on the horizon.

The more immediate threat is perceived to come from a variety of non-state but armed actors, notably the Hizbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Palestine and such entities elsewhere as Muqtada al Sadr's militia, the Sadr Brigade, in Iraq. Each of these three "enemies" arose outside the authorised structures of the nation-state formation, as militias and then as full-fledged guerilla forces; each has eventually decided to participate in the political process in their respective areas and even in government formation. Hamas was actually elected to governmental power; Hizbollah and Muqtada's forces also have substantial presences in the current, newly erected political structures of Lebanon and Iraq respectively. However, each of them participates in rituals of the state in pursuit of strategic advantage and each would be perfectly content to withdraw into the arena of guerilla warfare if its legitimate political aims are blocked in the political arena and/or it comes under military siege.

Moreover, each of them draws its main mass base from among the slum-dwellers, the unemployed and the pauperised, the proletarianised masses making a precarious living in the so-called "informal economy", the direct victims of past aggressions, relatives of the dead and the injured, the wretched of the earth. They have been uprooted from their traditional ways of life and religion serves for them as an opiate for their wounds, as the soul of a soulless world, as the encyclopaedic compendium of the knowledge of this world, as promise of a better one. They are neither state functionaries nor bourgeois, hence cannot be bribed into submission. They must be annihilated.

These armies of the poor are also seen by the U.S.-Israeli axis as flanks for the Iranian and Syrian regimes, and since the imperial imagination is incapable of seeing slum-dwellers as being autonomous subjects of their own history they are perceived as "agents" of the regimes which give them some rudimentary weapons for their own reasons. That there are practical relationships between Hizbollah and the Iranian and Syrian regimes is undeniable, but what the U.S.-Israeli axis does not comprehend is that there is a convergence of interests and convictions, not a relationship of clientalism. Nor can they perceive that the mass base of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Basij militia in Iran is exactly the same as that of Hamas in Palestine and Hizbollah in Lebanon: the rejects of capital and empire. The U.S.-Israeli axis believes that if the militias elsewhere can be beaten to pulp, Iran will lose its flanks and can then be dealt the final blow. All this is expected to be in place over the next couple of years and Olmert has said that he will declare Israel's "final" borders sometime by 2010.

The state of Israel is now close to 60 years old and already the pre-eminent power in the region, but it is also the only state in the world, and so recognised by the world system, that has never revealed what its borders are. The borders it had achieved for itself by 1967 are simply called "the Green Line", because it expects to annex more territory from the Palestinian population that it occupies as well as from its neighbours. Olmert's promise that he will declare Israel's "final" borders in a few years is premised on the belief that the U.S.-Israeli project for the "New Middle East" shall have been realised by then, and those "final" borders are likely to include not only the areas within the "Green Line" but also much of the Palestinian West Bank as well as parts of Syrian and Lebanese territories. That is what Hamas and Hizbollah, with their little armies of the poor and their rudimentary weapons, are up against. A new, sanitised phrase seems to have become very fashionable over the past few months to encapsulate this confrontation between vast imperial armies and little bands of nationalist soldiers: "asymmetrical warfare."

In this "New Middle East", reduced to a patchwork of ethno-religious entities, the whole history of oil nationalisations shall be reversed, control over oil resources of the region shall be transferred to the petrodollar corporations of the core capitalist countries, primarily the U.S. and Britain, and Israel's "energy security" shall be guaranteed, as part of the Jewish state's national security. Moreover, the water and land resources of Palestine shall come under permanent Israeli control, and the water resources of Lebanon may also be partially diverted for use in Israel. Various military arrangements are envisioned for the realisation of this project.

The U.S. itself has taken the main responsibility for Iraq and Israel is doing the same in Lebanon, while the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) is already embroiled in Afghanistan and is now being slated for a very large role in Lebanon after Israel has finished off with Hizbollah, destroying much of the country in the process. Britain is already in the U.S. pocket, Chirac has become extraordinarily belligerent on issues of "terror" emanating from the Middle East (West Asia) and North Africa, and, with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany in toe, there is now emerging a new definition of NATO's global responsibilities. Its expansion "eastward" now means not only in the direction of Russia but also towards West Asia.

A NATO-Israel protocol was signed in Brussels in November 2004 whereby closer cooperation was envisaged and Israel was invited to participate in military exercises and "anti-terror manoeuvres" with NATO, along with some Arab countries such as Egypt, Jordan and Algeria. Under this aegis, joint exercises of U.S., Israeli and Turkish forces did take place in the eastern Mediterranean, off the Syrian coast, in January 2005. Similar exercises were held for Israel with a larger number of NATO countries the following month and have since then become a regular feature. The premise of this growing integration of Israel into NATO is that Israel is under threat from the same sources which pose a threat to NATO countries - and, in deed, to their selected clients in the Arab world itself.

Hizbollah Plays the Spoiler

In the fatefully consequential year of 1967, Israel fought a swift war and not only destroyed the air forces of Egypt and Syria but also captured the remaining Palestinian territories as well as Syria's strategic Golan Heights and Egypt's vast Sinai peninsula, placing its armour on the embankments of the Suez Canal - all in a matter of six days. Subsequently, it invaded Lebanon at will and imposed upon the country whatever arrangements suited its purposes. All through these years, it has killed, maimed, kidnapped, imprisoned as many Palestinians as it wished, while the loss of even a couple of Israeli lives in retaliation became the reason for more bombings, killings, kidnappings and so on. Thus it has been, and Israel's arrogance of power is based on concrete historical experience.

The notable feature of Israel's current onslaught against Lebanon is that it began with the usual, made-for-television spectacle of mass destruction of civilian populations and infrastructure that has become the norm in recent years, reaching a particularly high-pitched crescendo in the "Shock-&-Awe" U.S. blitzkrieg against Baghdad in the opening days of that invasion. Much of the Lebanese national infrastructure was destroyed in a matter of days, as were the habitats of hundreds of thousands people in southern Beirut and other Lebanese cities; half a million refugees were generated in a week in a country half the size of Uttaranchal and more sparsely populated than it.

On the ground, however, the supposedly invincible Israeli Army simply could not move even half a kilometre without casualties. Hizbollah had evidently mastered the Vietminh-style art of laying landmines and building underground bunkers and tunnels for guerillas to operate from. From the skies, they destroyed cities and villages alike but, on the ground, they had to fight fierce battles to capture even single villages, inflicting but also taking casualties. Used to being masters of the West Asian skies for half a century, they could not intercept the ramshackle short-range missiles of Hizbollah, which fell at the rate of hundred a year on Israeli soil - for the first time in the history of the imperious Jewish state.

During its 1982 invasion of Lebanon, Israel had shot down over a 100 Syrian aircraft without losing one of its own (U.S.-supplied, of course). Now, when Hizbollah could not even imagine having an air force of any kind, Israel lost four Apache helicopters and an F-16 jet - state-of-the-art U.S. hardware - during the first 10 days of its invasion: a stunning first in the history of Israel's perpetual assaults on Arab lands. As the Israeli attacks began, their generals announced on television that they are going to "eliminate" Hizbollah and Western newsprint was ablaze with headlines saying that Bush had given Israel a week to do the eliminating, knowing that pressure to impose a ceasefire shall soon mount internationally. By the end of the second week, Israeli ground forces had made no significant progress while casualties were mounting beyond the endurance of the Israeli population which is used to not only victories but also victories without any significant casualties of their own; only the others are supposed to die. Israel had amassed troops on the Lebanese border with the assumption that Hizbollah shall be rendered powerless soon enough and the Israeli forces shall move quickly up to at least the Litani river.

With no significant progress on the ground and Israeli soldiers dying each day, while the Israeli government itself starting to talk not of "eliminating" Hizbollah but "weakening" it and "pushing" it farther away from the Israeli border, there began another kind of parade on Israeli television: retired high military brass and "experts" coming forward to say that the whole plan had been misconceived, that it needed re-thinking and so on. The latest news, before this article goes to press, is that Israel has "halted" its much-awaited "ground assault" in Lebanon but has called up three full divisions of reservists for active military duty. Only the next few days will tell whether Israel will play safe and hope that the U.S. will arrange for a NATO force to occupy southern Lebanon on its behalf (with the consent of the Lebanese government), or will undertake that ground offensive later, with more massive forces.

When Israelis began shelling an area in southern Lebanon which had U.N. personnel in it, the U.N. Deputy Secretary-General contacted them 10 times to request cessation of the bombardment and an Irish military officer warned them six times; despite all these requests and warnings, the bombing continued and four U.N. personnel were killed in a direct hit. By the time U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan arrived in Rome to attend the G8 Summit (plus Arab emissaries) to discuss the Lebanese situation, he was furious and demanded an immediate ceasefire; the Americans had already vetoed his bid to have his post as Secretary-General renewed, and they had dragged his name in mud on the issue of his son's involvement in the oil-for-food programme in Iraq, so he had nothing to lose. But he was then joined by everyone demanding a ceasefire, so that the U.S. and Britain found themselves isolated. The Israelis had had two weeks and they had simply not delivered, and, defiant as ever, Bush simply announced that he was going to give the Israelis as much time as they needed to do whatever they have planned. The Rome meeting ended in a fiasco, the so-called "international community" having made no decisions except to leave the Lebanese to the mercies of Israel.

Hence the season of leaks. It is said that much is going on behind the scenes. That there shall be a multinational force of perhaps as many as 20,000 or 30,000, led by Turkey or Germany or both, and involving contingents from a variety of countries, including India, Pakistan and Egypt. That it will start arriving in 60 days (plenty of time for Israel to do as it wishes) and the rest shall trickle in later. That its job shall be not to "disarm" Hizbollah but to re-locate it far away from the Israeli border. Whether that force shall be "led" by the U.N., or "mandated" by it but "led" by another country, or assembled and "led" by NATO is unclear, even in these leaks.

None of it can happen without simultaneous agreement of the Israeli and the Lebanese governments, and the latter has no power to agree to anything not acceptable to Hizbollah. If that fragile government is forced to proceed without the consent of Hizbollah, the government will fall and, with political vacuum at home and Israelis pounding the country from the outside, Lebanon may gradually return to a sectarian civil war, an outcome that Israel shall greatly welcome because Hizbollah then can be sucked into fighting that civil war and relieve the pressure on Israel; Israel, in turn, can then start arming yet another rightwing Maronite militia, as in the past.

The catch in all this is that the situation within Lebanon has changed drastically over the past decade or more. Having been brought up under the dark shadow of a civil war fought by a previous generation and fuelled in part by the Israelis, the new-generation Lebanese, who have seen their country go from rubble to prosperity, have no stomach for another civil war. There is undoubtedly a Far Right as well as a pro-Israeli elite which would like to see Hizbollah wiped off the face of the earth. But those forces no longer dominate Lebanese society as they did in the past. Most Lebanese view Hizbollah as a legitimate part of their national polity, and even its enemies have no sense of a blood feud against it, since it has never taken any Lebanese lives. As Azmi Bishara, the distinguished Palestinian member of the Israeli Knesset, wrote recently in the Egyptian weekly Al-Ahram, everything now depends on Lebanese unity; if that goes, everything goes.

Having come into Lebanon after being driven out of it with the force of arms, Israel cannot now retreat from this fight. Only the coming days shall show whether there is going to be a long-drawn-out war of attrition or a massive land assault; massive destruction through aerial bombings shall in any case continue, since that kills the Lebanese with no risk of Israeli casualties. Israel has claimed that Iranian arms are being brought to Hizbollah through Syria and it has gone to great lengths in asserting that it has carried out forensic tests which show that some of the most lethal rockets that have been fired by Hizbollah into Israel are of Syrian manufacture. This alone can be used as a justification for mounting an attack on Syria, or even Iran. Hence the Syrian-Iranian Summit in Damascus which is going on even as I write these lines.

Invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq are behind us, possible invasions of Syria and Iran are perhaps ahead of us, Lebanon is currently at the heart of the Zionist-imperial offensive. Meanwhile, a dozen or more keep getting killed in Palestine every week, a hundred or more in Iraq every day. The bloodlust of the imperium is unrelenting.

In conclusion, an odd fact. The severest condemnation of Israel's destruction of Lebanon that any Arab government handed out came not from Saudi Arabia, the Keeper of Islam's Holy Places, nor from Egypt, the largest and most powerful country in the Arab world, but from the U.S.-occupied Iraq where the U.S.-confected Parliament passed a unanimous resolution of outrage against Israel's action and the U.S.-appointed Prime Minister openly joined Syrian and Iranian demand for an immediate ceasefire. A sign of the times yet to come?

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