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Archive for December, 2013

Hacktivists Aim for Freedom from Big Brother Surveillance

A Black Bloc “anarchist communist,” 28-year-old Jeremy Hammond was a participant in Occupy Chicago and hacktivist with an Anonymous offshoot called Anti-Sec. He hacked into the records of Stratfo (Strategic Forecasting Inc.), a company that gathers intelligence information for corporations and the US government. An incentive was the company targeted Anonymous action against Mexican drug cartels. Doing direct action, Hammond gave the information to WikiLeaks and various publications, revealing the extent of surveillance of protesters, especially in the Occupy movement. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison. When a reporter asked if he was willing to die for his cause, he said, “Yes. Go to prison, die for my cause… or choose to live a life of submission.”[i] He joined the ranks of other brillant hacktivists including Chelsea Manning, Julian Assange, Edward Snowden who sacrificed their personal freedom for our freedom from Big Brother.


[i] Vivien Lesnik Weisman, “A Conversation With Jeremy Hammond, American Political Prisoner Sentenced to 10 Years, Huff Post Politics, November 19, 2013.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/vivien-lesnik-weisman/jeremy-hammond-q-and-a_b_4298969.html

 

Maui vacation including energy tools, field trips, and massage, April 2014

Maui in the Spring workshop. We’re putting together a dream vacation in Maui, April 5 to 12. Snorkel in the morning, energy tools workshop, field trips to the volcano, sacred sites, botanical gardens and thrift shops, then massage instruction with Donna Dove. Energy Tools workshop on Sunday April 6 then daily shorter versions. Thanks, Gayle

gkimball@csuchico.edu    www.gaylekimball.info

Energy Tools: Kinesiology to balance the body and mind; visualizations to ground, center, achieve goals, protect; introduction to intuitive reading,
Emotional Freedom Technique acupressure tapping and essential
healing tools. Reiki 1 available and individual sessions.

Our beautiful Kihei house photos

Hale Luana 4BR http://mauiguidebook.com/south-maui/vacation-rentals-south/koa-resort-1f/

Pick your bed and night you want to cook in order of who first sends in check to Equality Press, 42 Ranchita Way, Chico, 95928.

$950 for 7 days includes housing with pool, transportation, and breakfast. Each one of us will cook one dinner so bring your favorite recipe and spices. Donna has recipes with a local flavor if you like.

Please book your flight to Kahului, Maui to arrive early afternoon on April 5 and return around noon on April 12. American, United, Alaska, and Hawaiian fly to Maui. Hopefully you’ll have frequent flyer miles. I buy everything on my United card.

Add on trip to Lanai to snorkel on April 3. If you’d like to go try to arrive around noon in Kahului. Let me know so I can book  B&B rooms. It has a great snorkeling cove (I was once surrounded by dolphins) and a lovely garden and orchid collection at the top of the hill. Ferry costs $60 round trip.

Pack lightly as you can buy Hawaiian clothes at an excellent thrift shop. Just need bathing suit, jacket for the volcano, cotton pants and shirt for massage class. Camera, sunscreen, sunglasses. You don’t need to bring beach towel. You can rent snorkel gear at Snorkel Bob’s (Includes mask, fins, Bubba™ dry snorkel & net bag, No-Fog Goop & Fish I.D. card. $35/Week http://www.snorkelbob.com/cgi-local/SoftCart.exe/online-store/scstore/sbservices_packages.html?L+scstore+kryt1743ff814081+1388982493) but someone online recommended “Least expensive would be to buy the mask and snorkel at home, and rent the fins.” I like the short diving fins because my feet don’t cramp and they fit easily in suitcase. Look for a tube with a valve that keeps the water out. As a thin person, I wear a half wet suit which can be rented as well. We’ll practice in the pool first for newbies. Here’s a video link http://www.videojug.com/film/how-to-snorkel-safely-and-successfully

 

Direct Democracy in Latin America

Raúl Zibechi argues that a new language is needed in opposition to the “vertical, linear eye of our masculine, legalistic, and rational culture.”[i] Instead of trying to reform the state, this new world is being created in horizontal self-organized communities organized throughout Latin America, including Christian base communities in rural areas following liberation theology, indigenous Indian beliefs and insurgencies (as in the Mexican Zapatistas), collective occupation of land by poor landless people (in countries like Brazil and Chile) and revolutionary Guevarism (as in Cuba). A shared characteristic of these communities is reaction to neoliberal capitalism and respect for women and youth and egalitarian relationships in general at work and in home. Zibechi observes that when patriarchy erodes, creative energy flows. A visual representation of horizontalism is members often sit in circles in assemblies, a type of organization more complex than democracy. These kinds of movements helped install progressive governments in Venezuela, Brazil, and Ecuador, but Zibechi believes social movements get diluted by these progressive governments. They probably are rooted in small local groups with common interests and personal trust. He is optimistic that in the last two decades, “The long-awaited new world is being born in the movements’ [occupied] spaces and territories, embedded in the gaps that are opening up in capitalism. It is ‘the’ real and possible new world, built by indigenous people, peasants and urban poor on conquered lands, woven into the base for the new social relations between human beings. . . .”


[i] Raúl Zibechi. Territories in Resistance: A Cartography of Latin American Social Movements. AK Press, 2012, pp. 13 and 20.

 

 

Anarchism Direct Democracy in the Global Occupy Movements

 

I’d like to hear from any anarchists about their influences and beliefs….

The philosophy of anarchism developed during the French Revolution two hundred years ago, with many different branches. The Greek root an-arkhos means without a leader. Activist writer David Graeber explained that the easiest way to explain anarchism it to say, “It is a political movement that aims to bring about a genuinely free society” without the threat of violence by police, prisons, and armies.[i] Anarchists played an influential role in Spain, especially before Francisco Franco’s victory in the Spanish Civil War of 1936 to 1939 when farms and factors were collectivized, and then were active in the trade union movement. When Franco took power, he assassinated thousands of anarchists. In the US, revolutionary anarchism surfaced between 1875 and 1914 as with radicals like Emma Goldman, until Bolshevik success in the Russian Revolution silenced anarchism in Russia and communism became the dominant revolutionary ideology in the US.

 

Anarchism resurfaced in the global justice movement after 1989 and the fall of the USSR. The anti-globalization movement adopted direct democracy methods of decision-making and direct action in defiance of unjust laws such as Gandhi breaking British law to make salt. Consensus decision-making had its roots in Quaker meetings and Second Wave feminism. The Internet hacker group Anonymous does anarchist direct actions as described on their Facebook page.[ii] The editors of Occupy Everything explain “We write anonymously because we are conspiring to take apart everything in this world.” Graeber pointed out the anarchist principles of direct democracy, direct action and creating alternative institutions influenced the US civil rights movement, the anti-nuclear-movement and the global justice movement. The difference is none of these movements grew as quickly as the 2011 Occupy encampments.

 

Anarchistic goals influenced global uprisings in their anti-state government stance, a reluctance to make demands for changes that would imply recognition of the legitimacy of governments controlled by the 1%. A statement by the General Assembly at Occupy Wall Street explained, “Occupy Wall Street is a people’s movement. It is party-less, leaderless, by the people and for the people.” [iii] With similar goals to Marxist belief that the state must wither away as a tool of capitalist control, the difference is Marxists believe they need to take over the state and then transform society. Anarchists don’t want to be associated with national governments and believe they should practice the democratic new society now as in communes, co-ops, free school and worker-controlled factories “in the shell of the old.” Hence, all the Occupy movements quickly self-organize free services including kitchens, libraries, clinics, and childcare.

 


[i] Aragorn! editor. Occupy Everything: Anarchists in the Occupy Movement 2009-2011, LCB Books, 2012.

[iii] Occupy Everything, p. iv.

 

Global Activists’ Horizonal Democratic Organizing

Dutch scholar Marianne Maeckelbergh actively participates in and writes about international democracy movements, starting a decade ago with the anti-globalization movements against the power of organizations like the World Bank and IMF, also called alterglobalization. Many activists flowed from the older movement to the new ones. She found the horizontal organizing methods have maintained similar techniques of decisions made in small working groups that report back to the large gathering for consensus led by facilitators. If people disagree with a proposal, their suggestions will be added if possible. If not enough agreement, they are asked to talk their ideas over with the pertinent working group later. Another similar organizing technique is the use of hand signals to see the sentiments of a large crowd, such as approval with the twinkle, disapproval with the arms crossed to block and to protest against sexist or racist language by banging two fists together with arms raised. A third similarity is the acceptance and expectation that conflict will occur and is a creative part of the democratic process. If someone observes inequality it’s her or his responsibly to speak up.

Differences were anti-globalization activists didn’t intend to have long occupations and they were much less open to newcomers and to being filmed. Maeckelbergh traces the origin of horizontal organizing to feminist, peace, anti-nuclear movements, environmental and Do-it-Yourself (DIY) movements of the 1960s, 70s and 80s. For example, DIY punk musicians like Riot Grrrl in the US and the German band Mono für Alle! produced their own music independent of corporations. Another anticedent is the Zapatistas encuentros large organizational meetings since the mid-1990s.

 

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