dateline last night and my a.d.d. caught a story about paul newman's farm, empire, etc. they shot the whole thing from an angle that he usues organic farming and creates charities therefore the paul newman empire is good for the planet. he credited his knowledge of organics to his daughter. too bad mr. newman no one taught you about sustainability and local product! you are one of the single largest companies at 250 billion dollars who produce food and you want to call it eco concious because you ship all over the world to hungry yuppies who snatch up your expensive shit because its called healthy and has your stupid face on every bottle? how many bottles is that exactly? i'll tell you how many mr. newman. its more than your ONE STUPID little tiny farmers market can equal out. it will squash local healthy sustainable foods out like little bugs in a giant insect light! you suck mr. newman! you are a greedy bastard. i hate your stupid empire and your fake 'interest' in organics. you only like it because it appeals to stupid yuppies, aka rich idiots. i hope your dressing keeps your salad crisp in hell.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
NO ONE IS ILLEGAL!
For a world without borders! No immigration controls!
DEFEND THE OUTLAW!
Immigration controls should be abolished. People should not be deemed 'illegal' because they have fallen foul of an increasingly brutal and repressive system of controls. Why is immigration law different from all other law? Under all other laws it is the act that is illegal, but under immigration law it is the person who is illegal. Those subject to immigration control are dehumanized, are reduced to non-persons, are nobodies. They are the modern outlaw. Like their medieval counterpart they exist outside of the law and outside of the law's protection. Opposition to immigration controls requires defending all immigration outlaws.
BEWARE THE FASCIST! UNDERSTAND THE ENEMY!
Immigration controls are not fascism. Detention centres are not extermination camps. However immigration laws are different from other laws in one other significant way. They are the result, at least in part, of organised fascist activity. This country's first controls were contained in the 1905 Aliens Act and were directed at Jewish refugees fleeing anti-semitism in Eastern Europe and Russia. A major, perhaps the major, reason for the implementation of this legislation was the agitation of the British Brothers League. This was a proto fascistic organization which was formed in 1901 specifically around the demand for controls, which organized major demonstrations in London's East End and which can legitimately be viewed as the main force behind the legislation. The first controls directed against black people — the 1962 Commonwealth Immigrants Act — quickly followed events in Notting Hill and Nottingham in 1958. These were the so-called "race riots" — so-called to give a spurious impression of both spontaneity and non-political street fighting. The reality was that these physical and political attacks on black people were engineered by explicitly fascist organizations such as Oswald Moseley's Union Movement and Colin Jordan's White Defence League. And these organizations had a specific demand — immigration controls. Fascist front organizations such as the British Immigration Control Association subsequently continued the agitation until legislation was enacted. Oswald Mosley himself was quoted in the left-wing Reynolds News (5/11/61) as claiming the Bill leading to the 1962 Act was the "first success" for fascist activity in this country.
Immigration laws are inherently racist, since their purpose is to exclude outsiders. And they feed and legitimise racism. Far from being a natural feature of the political landscape, they are a relatively recent and disastrous distortion of it, explicable only by racism. This, together with the fascist origins of such laws, renders problematic the notion of "reform", as opposed to abolition, of immigration controls.
IMMIGRATION CONTROLS ARE MORE THAN THEY SEEM
Immigration controls deny people's right to freedom of movement and the right to decide for themselves where they wish to live and to work. They also deny people access to rights such as the right to work and the right to social and legal protections enjoyed by some of the current inhabitants of the place to which they migrate. In the process they cause intolerable suffering to many people. The sole purpose of this suffering is to deter others who might come to this country to claim asylum, to work or to join family here. People are thus punished not for anything they have themselves done, but for what others might do in the future.
Controls are not simply about exclusion and deportation. They are a total system. A system of extremes of pain and misery. They are international in the sense that virtually all countries, particularly all industrial countries, use controls. They are also international in the way the old British Empire was international. British Embassies, British High Commissions, British Consulates encircle the globe denying visas or entry clearance to the unchosen. A vast edifice of repression is built to prevent the movement of people. Those who attempt to flee wars and repression, or to improve their situation through migration, are forced to resort to buying false papers from agents or, worse, to travel clandestinely, again usually with the help of often unscrupulous agents. In the process many of them suffer great hardship, and thousands die. The answer is not to abolish agents, unscrupulous or otherwise. It is to abolish the controls on which the agents, the pain and the misery breed.
Controls are also internal to the modern state and in particular to the modern British state. They require the expansion of repressive and violent activities such as surveillance, security, prisons and policing, changes which threaten to permeate society as a whole. The deaths of Joy Gardner and others at the hands of immigration officers are a portent for the future.
Immigration officers have become part of what Karl Marx's colleague Frederick Engels described as 'the armed bodies of men' who constitute the state. Under immigration laws around 2,000 immigrants and asylum seekers who have not been charged with any crime, including children, babies and pregnant women, are locked up without trial, without time limit, and with minimal access to bail. Asylum seekers who are not detained are no longer allowed to work. Since 1996 employers have become an extension of the immigration service, responsible for the immigration status of their workers and liable to criminal sanction for employing undocumented workers. Over the last two decades entitlement to most welfare state benefits and provision has to some extent or another become linked to immigration status. Those without the required status go without. They are excluded from virtually all non-contributory benefits, child benefit, social housing and homelessness accommodation, in-patient hospital treatment, significant areas of community care legislation relating to the destitute, the sick, the elderly and the otherwise vulnerable, protection under child care legislation, state education provision in prisons and detention centres and in the proposed new accommodation centres. So much for the idea that those coming from overseas obtain priority treatment! Instead since 1999 asylum seekers from overseas have been deliberately transformed into an under-class subject to a regime that is the direct copy of the nineteenth century poor law. Like the poor law there is maintenance below subsistence level (seventy per cent of income support). Like the poor law there is forced dispersal into accommodation over which those dispersed have no choice. Under legislation introduced in 2002 many asylum seekers are no longer to have even this miserable entitlement, neither supported by the state nor allowed to work.
Immigration controls are not only about refugees. This is just the latest government myth. Migrants and immigrants — those coming to work and those wanting to join family here — along with visitors and students are all equally subject to controls along with refugees. Except unlike refugees they are not even entitled to the fake safety net of the poor law. History is important. It is the immigrant communities, especially of the Indian sub-continent and the Caribbean, who from the 1970s launched a direct attack on immigration control by organizing around campaigns against deportations and for family reunion. It is these campaigns which laid the foundations for the present movement in defence of refugees.
CAN THERE BE NON-RACIST OR FAIR CONTROLS?
Immigration controls are racist. The first post-war controls, contained in the 1962 Commonwealth Immigrants Act, were directed at black people. However all those subject to immigration control are not black. Within the last decade there has emerged or re-emerged a racism against those from Eastern Europe often combined with an anti-Islamic racism which ensures controls are directed against all those from Bosnians to Serbs to the Roma to the nationalities of the new Russian empire. There is nothing new about this. The first immigration controls, contained in the 1905 Aliens Act, were imposed against refugees — Jewish refugees fleeing persecution in Eastern Europe and Tsarist Russia. Controls were again imposed on Jews attempting to escape Nazism. In short the first half of the twentieth century was about controls against Jews, the second half about controls against black people and the last decade has been about controls against anyone fleeing war, poverty or mayhem or anyone wanting to join family here.
Today there exists, however fragmented, a movement against immigration control — a movement which challenges deportations, which opposes detention centres, which offers solidarity to refugees. The great strength of this movement is that it has united and formed a coalition between liberals and socialists, between reformists who don't challenge controls on principle and socialists who are opposed to all controls — and who argue no-one is illegal. The greatest weakness of this movement is that on the level of ideas liberalism dominates. Many of those critical of controls believe that such controls can somehow be sanitized, be rendered fair, be made non-racist. Even socialists are sometimes reluctant to raise the demand for the abolition of all immigration controls or to take this demand to its logical conclusions, in case this alienates potential allies against the abuses that follow from them. The result is that the argument against controls is simply not presented. Many people, perhaps most fair-minded people, if they are presented with the case, do agree that in principle immigration controls are wrong, but may also believe that to argue for their abolition is unrealistic.
But ideas matter and so too does the struggle for ideas. Wrong ideas can at best lead to confusion and dead-ends and at worst collusion with the present system. It is our position — a position which denies anyone is illegal, a position that is for a world without borders — that immigration restrictions can never be rendered fair or non-racist. This is for the following reasons. First controls are inherently racist in that they are based on the crudest of all nationalisms — namely the assertion that the British have a franchise on Britain. Second they are only explicable by racism. Their imposition is a result of and is a victory for racist, proto-fascist and actual fascist organizations. It is impossible to see how legislation brought into being by such means, legislation accompanied by the most vile racist imagery and assumptions, can ever be reconfigured and rendered "fair". Third the demand for "fair" controls simply ignores the link between immigration controls and welfare entitlements. This link is itself intrinsically unfair — and racist. Finally controls can never be "fair" to those who remain subject to them.
The demand for no controls — based on the assertion that no one is illegal — is frequently derided as utopian and is compared adversely to the "realism" of arguing for fair controls. However this stands political reality on its head. The struggle against the totality of controls is certainly uphill — it may well require a revolution. However the achievement of fair immigration restrictions — that is the transformation of immigration controls into their opposite — would require a miracle.
MORE PROBLEMS WITH ARGUMENTS FOR REFORMS.
The proclamation, our proclamation, that No One Is Illegal means what it says — it does not mean some people are not illegal or only some people are legal. The demand for no controls means no collusion with either the arguments for controls or with controls themselves. However controls have become so politically legitimised over the relatively short period of their existence that it has become all too easy to accept their existence whilst simultaneously opposing them. Here are some examples of what we are arguing against — deliberately difficult and we hope provocative examples:
First we are absolutely and unconditionally in favour of campaigns against deportation. However we are critical of the emphasis given to so-called "compassionate" grounds — in particular the re-occurring themes of sickness, age, vulnerability of children, violence towards women and destruction of family relationships. Of course we accept that these issues have to be presented, and presented forcibly, to the Home Office in private as part of any legal argument. The present balance of power — with the Home Office having most of the power — requires this presentation. However this does not require campaigns against deportation to construct themselves politically and publicly around such compassionate grounds. What this does is make a distinction between the "worthy" and the "unworthy" — between those with compassionate grounds and those without. It legitimizes the racist-inspired obligation that people feel to justify their presence here. In doing this it transforms what is normally undesirable — for instance ill health — into something highly desirable in order to try to remain here. Under the guise of gaining support on humanitarian grounds it actually dehumanizes individuals, and denies them their dignity, by reducing them to the sum total of their disabilities and vulnerabilities. It creates a competition between those subject to immigration controls as to who has the more "compassionate" grounds. Ultimately it makes it virtually impossible for young, fit, childless, single people without an asylum claim to fight to stay. This is why we support the slogan 'Solidarity not Pity'. We support unconditionally the right of all people to stay here if they wish to, and irrespective of their personal circumstances.
Second we are absolutely in favour of exposing the lies and hypocrisies of those advocating immigration controls — such as the lie that people coming here are a "burden" on welfare or are "flooding" the country. It is important to reject the notion that if immigration controls were abolished this country would be invaded by the populations of entire continents; the reality is that the vast majority of people prefer to stay where they are if this is at all possible. However we are opposed to building a case against immigration controls on the grounds that immigration is in the economic self-interest of the current inhabitants of this country, both because such an argument is wrong in principle and because the situation can change. For example although it was true until recently that more people left this country than came here, this is no longer the case. And while migrants, immigrants and refugees are currently net contributors to the welfare system, supposing it could be shown that new arrivals are somehow accessing a "disproportionate" percentage of welfare, would that mean we now have to support controls? Statistics are useful to refute distortions and lies, but cannot be the bedrock of our opposition to controls. Statistics can be a hostage to political fortune. Principles cannot. This is why we support the principle of No One Is Illegal.
Third we recognize the many contributions made to British society by migrants, immigrants and refugees stretching back centuries. Britain has been constructed out of waves of migration — the very idea of there being an "indigenous" population is both politically racist and historically nonsensical. However we are opposed to all arguments that seek to justify the presence of anyone on the grounds of the economic or cultural or any other contributions they may make. It is not up to the British state to decide where people should or should not live, or anyone else but migrants and refugees themselves. We support the unfettered right of entry of the feckless, the unemployable and the uncultured. We assert No One Is Illegal.
GAINS FOR SOME MEAN EXCLUSION OF OTHERS. NO 'EQUAL-OPPORTUNITIES' IMMIGRATION CONTROLS!
An obvious, if often overlooked feature of immigration control and the struggle against it, is that defining who may be excluded from it by necessity entails defining who is included in it. No One Is Illegal means that reform of immigration control, in whatever way such reform is presented, is at best problematic, at worst unacceptable because it would leave some people subject to control. It would still leave immigration outlaws. The degree to which any demand falling short of total abolition of controls is acceptable can only be measured by the degree in which it takes up the fight for all outlaws. All specific demands gainst controls need to be put in the context of and worked out through a position of opposition to all controls. Again we present some deliberately controversial examples:
First we are critical of the demand for a government "amnesty" against immigration outlaws. The level of our criticism will depend on the level at which the amnesty is pitched. Who is to be included in this demand? More importantly who is to be excluded? What gives anyone opposed to controls the right to define who is to be excluded? No One Is Illegal means what it says — anyone in the entire world who wishes to come or remain should have the right to do so.On a pragmatic basis amnesties have to be criticised as they will be used by the Home Office to entrap those not included in the amnesty.. This is precisely what happened when in 1974 a Labour government declared a tightly defined amnesty — deporting many of those who applied under the mistaken belief they fell within the definition.
Second we are critical of demands which, however well meant, leave even more vulnerable and exposed to immigration controls those not contained within the demand. An example is the demand that women coming here for marriage who are subsequently subject to domestic violence should not be subject to the requirement that they remain living with their partner for twelve months in order to acquire full immigration status. After years of campaigning this demand has now been met in part. As such it is clearly a tremendous gain for those women who otherwise would have the impossible choice of remaining in a violent relationship or being deported. However where does this leave all those women not subject to violence who wish for whatever reason to leave the relationship? For them not being battered by their partner has now become a positive disadvantage for immigration purposes. This is yet another example of how something morally outrageous — abuse of women — has become something highly desirable in immigration law. It is simply not a tenable position to argue. The only tenable position is to fight for the right of all, men or women, to remain irrespective of their personal situation.
Third immigration controls are not just racist. In their nationalism they encompass virtually all reactionary ideology. So unsurprisingly they are homophobic. Until recently there has been no provision for a gay partner to come or remain. However we are critical of the campaign for 'equality' with heterosexual relationships for gay relationships within immigration control. There cannot be equal opportunities immigration controls - unless one is in favour of the equality of the damned. For the last forty years immigration control has systematically attacked, undermined and wrecked tens of thousands of mainly black extended families from the Indian sub-continent, the Caribbean and Africa. Demanding equality with heterosexual couples simply ignores the inherent racism of controls and therefore the relationship between racism, sexism and homophobia. An additional problem is that the demand for the rights of gay couples elevates romance into a political goal — what about the single gay person, the celibate, the lonely, those of no sexual orientation or the promiscuous of any sexual orientation? Including gay couples within immigration law and its spurious "rights" means that all these other people are by definition excluded. Their status as outlaws is intensified. The way forward is to fight for the rights of all gay women and men along with everyone else to be able to come and remain irrespective of personal circumstances or relationships. The only equal opportunities immigration controls are no immigration controls.
Fourth, demanding to be "included" within controls — in the sense of demanding specific provision for gay couples — seems itself quite strange in that everyone else is fighting to be excluded from the tentacles of controls. However this contradiction only exists because, given the existence of controls, then absolutely everyone is already "included" in them to a greater or a lesser extent — in that everyone remains liable to investigation as to whether or not they are subject to them. In this sense women experiencing domestic violence still very much remain subject to controls — as they are obliged to undergo the humiliation of reliving the violence by having to prove its existence. The only political answer to these issues is to fight for no controls.
Fifth, each piece of immigration legislation going back to 1905 (and dramatically intensified in the last decade) can be seen as another brick in the wall — the wall preventing entry of the undesirable, the unchosen. It is therefore not sufficient to demand the repeal of the latest piece of legislation, to remove the latest brick — the whole wall has to go. Otherwise all those excluded by previous legislation remain outlaws and, what is worse, forgotten outlaws. Simply demanding the repeal of the most recent, and only the most recent, laws only serves to legitimize those preceding them. An example is the agitation against that part of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 (the latest legislation) which denies support to asylum seekers who make "late" asylum applications — thus rendering these refugees destitute. However in 1999 there was a campaign against the then latest legislation — the Immigration and Asylum Act. This was the legislation which created the poor law of forced dispersal and below-subsistence support. But now the agitation is to include late asylum applicants within the poor law! Again this is not a tenable political position.
At the same time there is being forgotten all those undocumented non-asylum seekers, migrants and immigrants, who have effectively been without any support due to provisions in various pieces of legislation prior to 1999. These statutes were themselves once new, were once campaigned against and are now forgotten — along with those subject to them.
No One Is Illegal means fighting to destroy immigration controls in their entirety and at the same time fighting to break the link between welfare entitlement and immigration status.
Many if not all of the arguments used to justify immigration controls are simply ludicrous and are more the result of racist-inspired moral panic than of any connection with reality. Such is the notion that the entire world population would come to this country if there were no controls: even if such an absurd notion were true, it should prompt concern for their reasons for coming rather than fear. Nonetheless these objections to open borders need to be answered and they require a socialist and anti-imperialist analysis. The objections about "overcrowding" can only be answered by discussing socialist use of resources — use based on needs not profits. The objection, the surreal objection, that migrants, immigrants and refugees obtain luxury housing and endless welfare compared to British workers needs to be answered both by pointing out the truth (namely that just the opposite is the case) but also by a recognition that benefits and welfare are woefully inadequate for everyone — both for the documented and the undocumented and that both have a shared interest in fighting for better welfare. The objection that those fleeing the devastation of the Third World have no right to come here can be met by pointing out the imperial responsibility for this devastation, both in the past and currently. As the Asian Youth Movement used to say "We are here because you were there". The objection that a state has the right to control its own borders can only ultimately be answered by questioning the nature of the nation state and borders. We agree and sing along with John Lennon — "Imagine There's No Countries".
THE WAY FORWARD — BREAK THE LINKS, PULL THE PLUG!
TO BUILD THE WIDEST POSSIBLE ALLIANCE in all struggles against immigration controls amongst those of differing political views. But to do this without collusion with controls and without compromising with the principle of no controls. To do this on the basis of challenging and winning over those involved to a position of opposition to all controls. No One Is Illegal — No Exceptions, No Concessions, No Conciliation.
TO RAISE THE DEMAND FOR NO IMMIGRATION CONTROLS within all actions and campaigns in support of migrants and refugees. A no-controls position should not be a necessary precondition of support for any particular campaign, but we should argue constantly within all campaigns for such a position. We should argue for campaign slogans to reflect a position of opposition to controls, not refugees are our friends or refugees are welcome here but slogans which recognise that we are in favour of freedom for all as a right, not a charity: No One Is Illegal — Free movement — No immigration controls.
TO SUPPORT AND BUILD EVERY SINGLE CAMPAIGN AGAINST DEPORTATION. To do this on the basis of solidarity not compassion. No One Is Illegal — No Need For Justification of Presence!
TO SUPPORT AND BUILD EVERY CAMPAIGN AGAINST DETENTION/REMOVAL CENTRES, since these are one of the clearest and most outrageously brutal and unjust consequences of immigration controls. No refugees or migrants should be detained simply because they want to be in this country. All detention/removal centres, and also all accommodation, induction and any other repressive 'centres' designed to enforce the unenforceable, should be closed. No One Is Illegal — No detentions!
TO FIGHT AGAINST ALL FORMS OF COLLUSION with immigration control and with the Home Office. In particular this means local authorities and voluntary sector organizations refusing to implement the new poor law. Local authorities should refuse to act as sub-contracted agents providing accommodation (often otherwise unlettible) for the forced dispersal scheme. Voluntary sector agencies should likewise refuse Home Office monies to enforce the poor law either through the provision of accommodation or advice. No One Is Illegal — Break The Links Between Welfare Entitlement And Immigration Status!
FOR WORKERS WITHIN THE WELFARE SYSTEM TO REFUSE TO COMPLY with the denial of benefits or provisions based on immigration status. Most workers within the welfare state, at either local or national level, entered their jobs in the belief they would be providing some form of socially useful service. Instead they now find they are denying services and have become part of the apparatus of immigration control. No One Is Illegal — No Compliance, Be In And Against The State!
Of course non-compliance by individual workers would leave them absolutely vulnerable to victimization and dismissal. Non-compliance requires major trade union support. It is manifestly important to try and win trade unions to a position of no immigration controls. To do this it is equally important to form rank and file groupings within unions of welfare workers who are being obliged to enforce internal immigration controls. No One Is Illegal — Workers' Control Not Immigration Controls!
FOR A MASSIVE TRADE UNION CAMPAIGN OF RECRUITMENT OF UNDOCUMENTED WORKERS ? of immigration outlaws. Such a recruitment campaign would help break the division between the documented and the undocumented. It would enable a campaign to develop against sweated labour and for the protection of migrant rights — rights to a fair wage, right to proper work conditions and, most of all, the right to work itself — as now it is unlawful to work without the correct immigration documentation. It would also provide another base for the undocumented to resist deportation and to fight for the regularization of their status. No One Is Illegal — Everyone has the right to work, the right to be in a union, and the right to have proper working conditions!
WE ARE NOT ALONE!
No One Is Illegal is a phrase first used by Elie Weisel, a Jewish survivor from Nazi Germany, a refugee and a Nobel prize winner. He was speaking in 1985 in Tuscon, Arizona at a national sanctuary conference in the USA in defence of the rights of refugees to live in the USA . The sanctuary movement undertaken by religious communities in the USA (and to a far lesser extent in the UK) in support of those threatened by immigration controls is one of many pieces of resistance to controls. Over the last few years No One Is Illegal groups have been formed throughout Europe and North America — for instance in Germany (Kein Mensch Ist Illegal), Spain (Ninguna Persona Es Ilegal), Sweden (Ingen Manniska Ar Illegal), Poland (Zaden Czlowiek Nie Jest Nielegalny) and Holland (Geen Mens Is Illegaal). In August 1999 anarchists organised a demonstration in Lvov Poland against the deportation of Ukrainian workers under the banner of No One Is Illegal. In France the sans papiers campaign under the slogan personne n'est illegal/e. There have been No One Is Illegal/No Border camps at the joint borders of Germany, Czech Republic and Poland, and No Border camps at Frankfurt, southern Spain and Salzburg. In June 2002 there was a demonstration against war, globalisation and in defence of refugees under the same slogan in Ottawa, Canada. In England groups are emerging calling themselves No Borders. The demand for no controls, rather than being seen as extreme,operates as a rallying call to the undocumented and their supporters. Our aim in producing this, our initial manifesto, is to encourage the formation of No One Is Illegal/No Border groups throughout this country — groups specifically and unreservedly committed to the destruction of all immigration controls.
Posted by ptownpixie at 11:50 AM
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
The 2007 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA ANARCHIST CONFERENCE seeks to present creative and positive alternatives to the state, during a weekend that will be both fun and educational. This event is open to both anarchists and non-anarchists who are interested in learning about radical ideas, options, alternatives, and support systems. Not only will alternative ideas be presented but we will also focus on what concrete work is being done locally and with anarchist groups in other regions and other countries. This event will focus on discussion, dialogue, community organizing, youth, families, and people of color in the community. We hope that this event connects people from different schools of thought so that we can learn from each other to further popular-education and mutual aid..
December 14th and 15th at the Southern California Library for Social Studies and Research
6120 South Vermont Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90044 (323) 759-6063
From 1pm - 9pm. $5.00 Admission for each day and free dinner.
For more info:
-50 minutes presentation, 10 minute breaks in between-
Schedule for Friday December 14th
1:30pm – 2:30pm
Room 1 Art Workshop / DIY Silk Screening by NELA FNB
Room 2 Animal Liberation Press Office
Room 3 A short History of Southern California Anarcho Movement By Jang
Room 1 Radical Women’s Health
Room 2 Puerto Rican Liberation Movement by Lawrence Reyes
Room 3 Anarchist Marxist Economics by John Imani
GARDEN (out side) Anarchist Organizing Models Training
Room 1 Black Riders Liberation Party
Room 2 Critical Resistance / Prison Industrial Complex
Room 3 DIY Disasters Preparations by Hop Hopkins
Room 1 Anarchist People of Color Panel (Francheska, Irina, Joaquin, D-Angelo)
Room 3 Community Organizing Workshop by Bilal Ali
Room 1 Verbal Judo and Street fighting / Women's Self Defense
Room 2 Anti Racism & Anti Colonialism by Anti Racist Action
Room 3 Checking Privilege while creating Autonomy and Self-Determination (Revolutionary
Room 1 Political Prisoners Panel :
Ray Boudreaux (Panther 8) , Danae Kelly (Animal Rights Activist) , Sherman Austin (Anarchist
Political Prisoner), Henry W. (Hank) Jones (Panther 8)
Room 3 Q Team
Schedule for Saturday December 15th
1:30pm – 2:30pm
Room 1 Premaculture Panel and Organic Gardening – L.A. Radical Change and Daisy
Room 2 Homophobia and History of Gay Rights Shannon
Room 3 Child Advocacy: Protecting Children from Abuse and Neglect by Camille
GARDEN Vegan Nutrition by Matt (Registered Dietitian)
Room 1 Youth Organizing Panel (Black Riders Liberation Party, Cop Watch, Youth Justice
Coalition, Revolutionary Autonomous Community, Q-Team )
Room 3 Interpersonal Relationships by Christine
GARDEN (outside) Non-Violent Parenting
Room 1 Chicano Anarchism by Omar Rodriguez
Room 2 Animal Rights Activism (with Danae Kelly, Pam / Animal Defense League and more..)
Room 3 Food not Bombs
Room 1 Black Panther Party Panel - original L.A. members from the late 60's:
Ronald/Elder Freeman, Wayne Pharr, Somayah Kambui, Michael D McCarty (Chicago Chapter)
Room 3 White folks fighting White Supremacy by Active Resistance to White Supremacy (work
group of AWARE-LA)
Room 1 Indigenous Rights
Room 2 No Borders workshop
Room 3 Independent Media Center A collective of organizations and journalists offering a
grassroots, non-corporate perspective
Room 1 Know Your Rights Training (Cop Watch LA - South Central and Frente Contra Las
Room 2 Anarchist Black Cross
Room 3 History of Anarchist Collectives and Anarchist Organizing
December 16th at the Centro De Accion Popular
1042 N. Richmond St, Los Angeles, Ca. 90033 (near 5 fwy and 101 fwy)
Live performance by:
Another Destructive System
Posted by ptownpixie at 10:38 PM
Thursday, December 6, 2007
someone's getting their back scratched....
USDA: No animal mistreatment by OHSU
11:18 AM PST on Wednesday, December 5, 2007
USDA clears OHSU following claims of animal mistreatment PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture has cleared Oregon Health & Science University of claims that medical research monkeys were mistreated following a complaint by an animal activist group.
In November, PETA said it had filed a complaint with the USDA over the treatment of monkeys at Oregon National Primate Research Center, which is operated by Oregon Health & Science University. Scientists defended their record of animal care at the center.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said it had documented violations of federal animal protection laws by sending someone to work undercover for four months as a technician at the center.
In response, the USDA conducted a special two-day investigation. The report found OHSU in compliance.
This is the second time in the past seven years that an animal activist group has placed what they describe as an "investigator" in the primate center. In 2000, a former PETA employee and current employee of In Defense of Animals took a job at the primate center and then made claims of mistreatment. In that case, a two-month USDA inspection cleared the center of wrongdoing.
Posted by ptownpixie at 2:02 PM
36 years later - COINTELPRO is back! Free the SF 8!
On January 23, 2007, eight men were arrested for the 1971 slaying of San Francisco police Sergeant John Young as well as participating in a conspiracy to "kill police" which allegedly occurred between 1969 and 1973. The case was originally dismissed in 1975 on the grounds that the only evidence was based on the "confessions" of three men, two of them among the defendants, which were extracted through severe and extensive torture. The third man was given immunity in the original trial and has since provided inconsistent, self-contradicting testimony which he himself has recanted. The only other evidence is mysterious forensic evidence consisting of a gun which was never produced and DNA which does not match that of any of the defendants. Were the circumstances of the case not so severe, one would be tempted to see this "investigation" as something more akin to a cross between the Keystone Cops and the CIA's MKULTRA program than the FBI's COINTELPRO (Counter-Intelligence Program), but incompetence, illegality, and a complete lack of human decency on the part of the police have never guaranteed an acquittal before, and in today's "counterterrorist" environment, this is all the more true. Public displays of public awareness and militant action are highly crucial.
The eight men are Herman Bell, Jalil Muntaqim (formerly Anthony Bottom), Ray Boudreaux, Richard Brown, Henry Watson Jones, Richard O'Neal, Harold Taylor, and Francisco Torres. John Bowman and Ronald Bridgeforth were the ninth and tenth people implicated by the police in the case, but John Bowman passed away in 2006 and Ronald Bridgeforth, though still being sought, has not been seen since 1969. Bowman, along with Boudreaux, Brown, Jones, and Taylor, were indicted by a grand jury in 1975, all refused to testify and were subsequently imprisoned until the conclusion of the investigation later that year, whereupon they proceeded to form the Committee to Defend Human Rights and produced the video "Legacy of Torture" which describes the Grand Jury investigation as well as fairly graphic descriptions of the Guantanamo Bay/Abu Ghraib-like "interrogation techniques" originally used against Bowman, Taylor, and self-repudiated "witness" Ruben Scott. All eleven of these men were at the time Black Panther Party members or supporters; it is clear, they were arrested for who they are, not anything they've done.
Bowman, Taylor, and Scott were arrested in New Orleans by then-San Francisco policemen Frank McCoy and Ed Erdelatz, who were working in conjunction with the F.B.I., which was then in the midst of the now-infamous "COINTELPRO", which relied heavily on illegal techniques such as warrantless surveillance, harassment, intimidation, occasional assassinations, keeping organizations swamped in court cases based on manufactured evidence, coerced testimony, and perjury. Bell and Muntaqim have been in prison as a result of another of these spurious cases since 1973. When Bowman, Taylor, and Scott didn't give the answers McCoy and Erdelatz wanted, they were turned over to the New Orleans police whereupon they were "interrogated" with cattleprods, slapjacks, beatings, verbal abuse, various forms of water torture, and various other means for several days. Though the case was initially thrown out, nobody was ever charged for this. McCoy and Erdelatz now work for the Department of Homeland Security. It was McCoy and Erdelatz who came to Harold Taylor's home in 2003 to question him as a prelude to the grand jury investigation in 2005. "I haven't been the same since" says Taylor.
The Black Panther Party was ultimately identified very explicitly as the primary target of COINTELPRO and it was the extreme excesses of an already excessive program used against the Panthers which ultimately brought the program down, at least in name. Unfortunately, many of the illegal tactics used by COINTELPRO "back in the day" are no longer illegal as a result of the Patriot Act. Those who do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it. Some think we should sacrifice our civil liberties for security against the so-called terrorists, but as Benjamin Franklin said, "Those who seek to exchange freedom for security deserve neither."
Bell and Muntaqim are not eligible for bail due to their continued incarceration on previous charges. The other six defendants were initially given $5,000,000 bail apiece but have since had it reduced on appeal and are, as of this writing, out. All eight, of course, face the possibility of spending the rest of their lives in prison and Bell and Muntaqim face the possibility of a second conviction in addition to the one they have spent the last 34 years behind bars for. It is of paramount importance to bring as much public scrutiny as possible to bear on this and all COINTELPRO-smelling cases as possible, not to mention the Patriot Act and government's current disregard for whatever marginal adherence to international human rights law it ever had. What you do matters! Please do anything you can to help these brothers.
"MKULTRA" refers to a C.I.A. program in the 1950's revolving around notoriously bizarre experiments and the use of hallucinogenic drugs as possible truth serums, Weapons of Mass Disorientation, etc.
For more information, contact the Committee for the Defense of Human Rights at email@example.com
Posted by ptownpixie at 12:01 PM
G8 meets in Japan - I'll see you in the streets
NO! G8 Japan
In July 2008, heads of the states that monopolize two thirds of earth's wealth will gather at Toya Lake in Hokkaido Japan. Although the so-called Group of Eight does not have any legitimate right for deciding planetary affairs, they have self-appointed themselves world rulers. Thus the G8 has driven neo-liberal globalization at the same time as spreading poverty, violence, hatred, segregation, and environmental destruction.
At a very critical moment of world capitalism during the 1970s, the G8 was established to form a consensus among the imperialist nation-states. The 'consensus' signifies nothing short of finding out the most convenient means of driving global financialization, privatization, commercialization, and militarization and camouflaging these processes as if they were for the public well-being.
In the past the G8 has expressed concerns about human rights and poverty. German Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed the need for a human-faced globalization. But then, who is it that violates human rights on the pretext of the "fight against terrorism"? Who is it that is eliminating public education the world over? Who is it that privatizes almost all the resources left for humanity -- land, water, and food -- and preys on the increasing global poverty? Who is it that produces and exports more than 90% of the world's weaponry? At the 2007 summit in Heiligendamm, one of the main themes was the poverty in Africa, but what they proposed as a measure to combat it was, shockingly, the deregulation of investment in Africa. From its behavior we have learned that for the G8, even human rights and poverty are just another opportunity for capitalists' expropriation.
At the Toya Lake summit in 2008, the main theme will be environmental problems. What a deceit! It is the G8 that ravages the natural resources of the world--even resorting to arms--and discharges more than 40% of the planetary carbon dioxide, hence instigating the climate changes. Shinzo Abe, the just-resigned prime minister of Japan who was to have hosted the 2008 summit, invented a vain slogan: "Invitation to 'Cool Earth 50'," which proposes in substance the exportation of nuclear power plants to developing countries--nothing that counters capitalist interests and works for true enduring development.
We are no longer silent. Neither do we intend to make a petition for a better G8 through conversation. By way of direct action, we will demand the termination of 2008 Toya Lake Summit and the decomposition of G8.
Also we will demand the immediate liquidation of the policies of the just-resigned Abe administration of Japan, the sole participant in the G8 from Asia. The Japanese government is in the midst of pushing for neo-liberalist reforms and the fortification of the security-state in Japan, while persisting in sending troops to Iraq as a simple-minded follower of the US strategy for its global military rule. At the same time, just-resigned Abe's main objective was to amend Japan's constitution in order to complete the long-lasting ambitions of imperialist Japan. Thus, to thwart the ambitions of the Japanese state is no longer a concern of Japan alone, but a must for the struggle against the neo-liberalist expansion and militarization in the entire Asian region. Our objective to terminate G8 is inseparable from these regional tasks.
We appeal to you, all the people struggling in different regions of the world, to join No! G8 Japan in July 2008 in Toya Lake, Hokkaido Japan. We consider our project as a continuation of the planetary anti-G8 struggles, especially those coordinated by Dissent network. We seek to add a new phase of it in the Far East. Let us organize together the widest possible global network and create an unimaginably varied, rich, and powerful spectacle of struggle. By so doing let G8 know that a world that is totally different from the one driven by the capitalist principles, a world that is based upon the principles of autonomy, mutual aid, and direct democracy, is possible.
For info, check http://a.sanpal.co.jp/no-g8 -- parts are in English. Organizers are planning a tour of Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, the Philippines, and Indonesia to promote the protest.
Posted by ptownpixie at 11:59 AM
2008 Republican National Convention is not in the frying pan
Unconventional Action - central NC
One sunny day in late August we found ourselves standing on the highway. As the sun beat down mercilessly we looked at each other doing our best to keep our good hitchhiking clothes smelling sweet for just one more ride.
Fifteen hundred miles later, we arrived in Minneapolis/St. Paul several days early for the PreNC, a gathering of anarchists hosted by the RNC Welcoming Committee with the purpose of developing a large-scale direct action strategy to shut down next year's Republican National Convention. As delegates from the North Carolina faction of the growing Unconventional Action network, this gathering was the culmination of six months of networking, propagandizing, and strategizing in our own region.
Why organize early for the conventions? Why organize for them at all?
Many would point out that political party conventions are largely symbolic gatherings, where most of the major decision-making has already happened. Shouldn't we focus on disrupting something more tangible? There is wisdom in this critique, but it could be applied to just about any single protest or event. The point of any single, coordinated day of action is to prove to the broader public, as well as ourselves, that we do in fact have the power to interfere with the rich and powerful on our own terms.
There are several factors that make the party conventions an excellent choice for such interference. In 2008 disillusionment with the endless war and the party system that refuses to end that war will reach a peak, just as the public visibility of anarchists in this part of the world is bottoming out. Many issues that anarchists work on locally will intersect with the diverse struggles of non-anarchist folks at these protests, and more of these people will be drawn to direct action than in many years past. We believe it is crucial that anarchists organize early on to set the tone for this direct action, in order to avoid being eclipsed by the authoritarian politicking and liberal marches of the last few years. Moreover, Denver (DNC) and St. Paul (RNC) have promising strategic vulnerabilities unsurpassed in recent years of mass mobilizations.
On the penultimate day of the pReNC, over 100 anti-authoritarians from around the country gathered together to distill their schemes and dreams into a formal stratagem. Smaller working groups of around 20 focused on nationwide communications, food/medical /legal infrastructure, media, coalition building, and action strategy. Pouring over maps, timetables, and photographs of the city, this last group hammered out the specifics of an action plan:
• On the first day, maximum disruption will be caused by a three-tiered direct action strategy. The tiers are, in order of priority:
Tier One: Establish 15-20 blockades, utilizing a diversity of tactics, creating an inner and outer ring around St. Paul's Excel Center, where the RNC will be held.
Tier Two: Immobilize the delegates' transportation infrastructure.
Tier Three: Block the five western bridges connecting the cities.
It was repeatedly emphasized that people plugging into this strategy will be free to shape their actions as they see fit, using tactics they find appropriate. As the specific blockade sites develop, there may be a system of delegating some sites as "red zones" (more rowdy, will fight back), "yellow zones" (feisty but peaceful), and "green zones" (non-arrestable) so as to accommodate a wide variety of creative tactics. Soon locals will be identifying the most strategic blockade sites, and will be available to answer questions about measurements, geography, etc. So get your comrades together, print out some maps, and start thinking about which site you want to cover now. Over the next six months groups will begin adopting specific intersections, streets, on-ramps, or bridges as their own.
The pReNC is calling for local and regional groups to organize their own planning consultas over the next few months, to be ready to reconvene in Minneapolis in summer 2008. They are also calling for a series of local actions against oppression and electoral politics leading up to and building momentum and experience for the RNC and DNC. More information on calls for local actions are in the works.
Eye to the horizon, ear to the ground
On October 5-7, radicals converged in Denver for the annual anti-Columbus Day marches to hold their own Unconventional Consulta to develop the strategy of direct action for the Democratic National Convention. (Slingshot went to press before the meeting - ed.) For info email unconventionaldenver@ riseup.net. The finalized strategies for both conventions will be published in a newspaper to be distributed throughout the country, and Unconventional Action groups will be doing road shows to publicize both strategies and facilitate direct action training. The website www.unconventionalaction.org will serve as an info point, networking tool, and research hub for folks around the country. While planning what roles you wish to play in these actions, be sure to start fundraising; the RNC Welcoming Committee estimates that it will need as much as 50,000 dollars for a two-month-long convergence center, legal costs, and other necessary expenses, and undoubtedly similar funds will be needed in Denver.
We have one year to prepare for the most extravagant theatre in this war on exploitation. That means one year to study maps, prepare blockades, run our sprints, climb fences, craft disguises, find press credentials, procure bolt-cutters, and most importantly, gather those close to us and devise our own plans. The political parties hope to rally their support with all the bells, whistles, lights and confetti that can be expected from a class that cares more about appearances than human life. But we envision a different outcome. We will be here to ensure that when the CNN cameras pan the Xcel center on the first night of the RNC, not one seat in the entire stadium is filled. Our actions will eclipse the RNC. We are going to shut the convention down.
Get ready -- a year goes faster than a root beer float in August.
Posted by ptownpixie at 11:55 AM
Stop the Gold War - Latin America struggles against destructive mining
David Modersbach in Rosario, Argentina
What do popular environmental struggles against gold mining throughout Latin America have to do with ending the war in Iraq?
Today every Latin American country is host to foreign gold mining operations. With modern mining techniques, anywhere there are mountains, gold can be mined: The geological conditions that produce mountains mean that trace amounts of gold, invisible to the eye, lie disseminated deep within mountain ranges. Modern open-pit mining techniques demolish and pulverize mountains, to soak the ore in cyanide solutions to extract about one ounce of gold for every eighty tons of rock. These techniques are incredibly disruptive and contaminative. They leave entire mountain ranges devastated, create enormous toxic "tailings reservoirs," create acid drainage which contaminates entire river systems, leave vast regions desertified, and communities sickened and impoverished.
Under destructive modern techniques, more gold has been extracted in the past twenty years than in all human history before today. Modern mining is carried out almost exclusively by a few increasingly powerful transnational corporations, such as Barrick Gold, Rio Tinto, Glencore, Goldcorp, and exploration activities by hundreds of "junior companies."
Modern gold prospecting is less about geology, and more about prospecting for the local social conditions which enable corporations to contaminate and freely utilize energy and water resources while controlling vast amounts of territory.
The selling point for building a gold mine is the creation of a limited number of jobs for the local population. The insertion of transnational mining companies and the privatization of common goods such as land and water is not possible in localities where institutions, knowledge and culture are strong and healthy: on the contrary, mining insertion is successful in regions where corruption and dependency rule, and where traditional, autonomous economies, spaces and cultures have been weakened or destroyed.
Mining firms see themselves in a growing race against time: in the face of rising public rejection, their goal is to get their "foot in the door," that is, install their multi-million dollar mining projects at all costs, in order to transform social and economic landscapes, and thus ensure their continued, and profitable, existence, before the public finds out what is really in store for them. Direct action makes it possible to for us to prevent or delay an open-pit mine. But once it is installed, it is there forever. There are over eighty large-scale metals mining projects in operation throughout Latin America: Each one is a regional disaster. There are literally thousands more in exploration.
But there is really good news: Social conflicts have erupted in every single country where mining firms are now operating: Perú, Ecuador, Colombia, Mexico, all of Central America, Brazil, Venezuela, Bolivia, Chile, and my current abode, Argentina. In Tambogrande in Perú, Esquel in Argentina, and Miramar in Honduras, gold mining firms have been forced out by local pressure. In La Rioja, Argentina, this spring local activists carrying out a four-month roadblock campaign successfully ousted Barrick Gold as well as their corrupt governor from their province. Here in Argentina, we have passed legislation prohibiting big mining in five provinces.
In the face of this widespread opposition, mining firms have responded by aligning closely with corrupt national governments to increase use of military force, while at the same time carrying out well-moneyed campaigns to promote "responsible mining," "sustainable development" and "jobs" on a local level -- trying to co-opt and split communities by buying the support of institutions such as the press, universities and oversight agencies. This is the practice of "social insertion" -- the mining corporations' strategy to purchase "legitimacy" through the bankrolling and thus control over the very public institutions that the neoliberal State has abandoned.
The nature of popular movements against mining operations varies considerably from community to community, but they are all based in a rotund "NO" to all forms of metals mining activities. Communities are seeing through corporate-NGO greenwashing discourses such as "mining with control," "best international standards," or "corporate social responsibility," and realizing that a no-concessions stand in the face of open-pit metals mining utilizing chemical leaching processes is the only viable way to prevent the specter of contamination, acid drainage and local impoverishment which continues to take place even under the best conditions in the most advanced first world countries such as Canada and the US.
A most powerful community tool is popular consultation or referendums. Communities struggle mightily to carry out referendums which in every case have won overwhelming rejection of mining projects, leaving the discourse of mining companies and global finance agencies in the dust. Through the carrying out of these referendums (Esquel, Tambogrande, San Xavier in Mexico, and Sipikapa in Guatemala) communities carry out a crucial double action: they reject mining, and they begin the important democratic process of defining their own autonomous paths of "development."
This September 16, 2007, communities in the mountains above Piura, Peru carried out a historic public referendum regarding the ongoing conflict over the Majáz mines project. 97 percent of the residents voted to reject the project. Meanwhile, in Calingasta, Argentina, the corrupt provincial governor banned a public consultation for three years in a row. In this beautiful, but feudal and corrupt backwater, ruled by Barrick Gold Corporation, foreign "miners" ply village roads in 4x4s with tinted windows. When they pass, locals stop talking, and look away in fear and contempt. These groups of modern "miners", muscular, ugly and rude, be they Canadians or whatnot -- they are the Yankee occupying army in these modern "zones of sacrifice."
On September 10, the occupying armies of miners struck the northern Mexican village of Celemania: A mining truck transporting 25 tons of dynamite crashed in the small mountain town. In a tremendous explosion, 28 villagers were killed and 250 injured, dozens losing limbs, eyes, and hearing. The company responsible was Australian mining chemicals company ORICA. Every day thousands of these potential truck bombs crisscross villages throughout Latin America.
What does gold have to do with stopping Bush's war in Iraq? According to the Le Monde Diplomatique, Bush's United States desperately needs to buy all of the gold that it can in order to prop up the national economy in this time of war. For every dollar that is spent on the war of genocide in Iraq (at last count some $450 billion dollars) Bush must have an equal amount of gold, in the form of bullion, in reserve. And in the face of the increasingly unstable dollar on world markets, foreign governments, banks and investors are purchasing more and more gold bullion as a hedge against the upcoming collapse of the dollar.
This demand is driving ever upwards the price of gold, and politically and economically pressuring increased extraction of gold at a frenzied rate. The gold mining giants such as Barrick Gold Corporation are consolidating their power through mergers and takeovers, with support of public and private international finance corporations. But resistance makes their profit margins increasingly narrow: A variety of tactics from political delays to sabotage, and pressures on a local level can make all the difference in the world in halting their projects and sending these firms, and their activities, into a tailspin.
The fight against big mining insertion in Latin America, North America, Asia, Australia and throughout the world is an ecological battle to preserve the mountains and water that sustain life and livelihoods; it is a fight for local power in the face of a globalized world system; it is a fight for the dignity of people and culture within their environment. And finally: We must support the fight against destructive gold mining because every ounce of gold extracted from our sacred mountains today is going towards the support of this genocidal imperial military world order.
For more information:
Posted by ptownpixie at 11:52 AM
....the pic of this chick looked familiar. creepy.
Domestic FBI spying EXPOSED - blow-by-blow account of Eric McDavid's trial
Sacramento Prisoner Support / edited by Slingshot collective
As Slingshot goes to press, our comrade Eric McDavid -- framed by an undercover agent provocateur on conspiracy charges for an alleged "eco-arson" action that never happened -- is on trial in a Sacramento Federal Court. We will go to the printing press before we know the outcome of his trial. Regardless of the outcome, Eric needs support -- political, financial, and if convicted, prison support.
During the course of the trial, the government's star witness -- an undercover FBI agent known as "Anna" -- testified extensively about her infiltration of radical circles in the United States. Her testimony provides a rare window into the way the FBI has monitored radicals since September 11.
We know the FBI and law enforcement are spying on our organizations and on our protests -- from harmless candlelight vigils to militant actions at meetings of the G8. What is unusual about this case is that the FBI's agent went beyond just spying -- she engineered the "conspiracy" by providing the plans, the inspiration, the funding, the housing and the transportation for her victims, while using the lure of romantic involvement between her and Eric to keep him interested.
Members of Sacramento Prisoner Support (SPS) and many of Eric's supporters have attended every day of his trial. SPS has sent out fascinating blow-by-blow accounts of the testimony. Sadly, they are far too long for us to publish in their entirety. Instead, below we've published exerpts to give folks a flavor of the trial testimony and how far the government will go. The point of publishing this isn't to make us scared and unable to resist corporations, the government, and their attacks on the earth and its inhabitants. The point is that we need to understand the government's tactics. If someone seems just a little too anxious to encourage illegal discussions and actions, remember Eric McDavid. Don't be afraid -- but don't be reckless -- figure out how to fight for the earth!
Eric McDavid, Lauren Weiner and Zachary Jenson were arrested January 13, 2006 and charged with conspiracy to destroy property. Although the group never carried out any action, Eric faces up to 20 years if convicted. Weiner and Jenson took plea deals and testified against Eric. The following shortened, edited notes on the trial -- written by SPS -- demonstrate how Anna infiltrated the radical scene and entrapped Eric, Lauren and Zach. For info, see www.supporteric.org.
Direct examination of Anna
. . . Anna said she was a 17 year old sophomore at a junior college in Florida who wanted to impress her political science professor with an extra credit project. She heard in the news about the FTAA [Free Trade Area of the Americas] protests in Miami and decided to infiltrate it for her project. She says that the first day she when to the protests people were suspicious of her efforts because of her appearance. She then "went to the Goodwill to find the rattiest clothes possible, something the protesters might like". She said she was accepted once she began imitating the protesters aesthetic and was able to infiltrate some kind of group that was planning for the FTAA protest. . . .
Anna stated that she presented the paper on her undercover operation to her political science class and they liked it. Apparently there was someone from the Florida investigators office enrolled in the class who was very taken by her work and approached her to ask if he could share it with his supervisor. Apparently his supervisor liked it and it went up the chain of command. At that point the Miami police department called to interview her along with the FBI. After the completion of that interview she was offered work with the FBI. At the request of the FBI, 17 year old Anna went to the G8 in Georgia, the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Boston and the Republican National Convention (RNC) in New York City to surveil the protesters.
She said that she was asked to give the FBI "real time" cell phone reports on illegal activities at the protests. Her examples were giving "breakaway march" locations or "if there was a rumor that there was a black bloc". She said that at the G8 she was working undercover at the Independent Media Center. After the G8 she traveled to Boston before the DNC "to meet the organizers and listen to their plans". She says that they had no plans for illegal actions. None the less, she came to Boston for the DNC and met with the organizers again. In Boston she says that the illegal activities that she advised the FBI on was a banner drop and a paper mache molotov cocktail.
She claims that she met someone at DNC who invited her to the CrimethInc convergence in Des Moines, which she described as a very exclusive event. She says that she met Eric at CrimethInc in Des Moines and "at the time I thought he was inconsequential". When asked by the US Attorney (USA) if she reported on Eric she said "I mentioned he was there." When asked by the USA if that was common she said "I reported on lots of people". Anna stated that after CrimethInc she received a reimbursement for her expenses and a lump sum payment which she claims was totally unexpected. She says that her deal with the FBI was only for reimbursements and that the payments (there was more than one) were always a surprise. . . . She states that she was asked by the Miami FBI, at the suggestion of the secret service, to attend the protests against President Bush's inauguration in 2005. She states that she was asked to give reports on anyone dangerous there, but that "nothing happened". She was then asked by the Philadelphia FBI to attend the biotech protests in 2005.
She claims that she had not kept in touch with Eric after CrimethInc and heard from him sporadically. She wanted to meet up with him in Philly because as she said "I was going to use him to gain access to protesters there, enhance my credibility and gain access to the convergence center". She met with Eric and Jenson in Philadelphia, where they all stayed at Lauren Weiner's apartment (this was the first time Anna and Weiner had met). Anna claims that at this point Eric seemed "radicalized" since the time she had seen him in Des Moines. . .
Anna claims that at the Bio protests, Eric told her he had missed her and had things to tell her but that there were "too many ears around." She reported this back to the Philadelphia FBI who then did a background check and Eric came up on a FBI "persons of interest list" from Sacramento. Apparently this was due to an investigation of a friend of Eric's named Ryan Lewis who was accused of participating in property destruction in Auburn, CA. The FBI told Anna to pursue Eric at this point to try to find out about illegal activities in California. Anna next went to the CrimethInc convergence in Bloomington, IN, after picking Eric up in West Virginia. She reported that this convergence was much larger than the last, with a wider range of skill shares and workshops. Upon her arrival in Bloomington she found time to sneak away and meet with the FBI, who were particularly interested in her reporting to them on any possible illegal protests surrounding the construction of the I-69 highway. During this CrimethInc convergence, Anna claims that Eric took her to a prison support workshop, where he told her he had a buddy looking at 40 years (which she claims was a reference to Ryan Lewis).
After the CrimethInc convergence, Anna drove Eric to Chicago. During this car ride, Anna claims that she asked Eric about what he had said in Philadelphia about "something big." She also asked him about Lewis. . . . Anna alleges that at this point Eric asked her to join him in a bombing campaign in the winter, in her role as medic. [This conversation was not recorded.] Anna saw Eric again in August 2005, very briefly, outside of Weiner's apartment. At this time Anna told Eric that she was interested in joining him, and he allegedly asked her to find him a chemical equivalency list. She agreed. Anna did not see Eric again until November of 05, and claims to have had sporadic email contact with him during this time period.
The FBI wanted her to gather more information and find out where he was at the time. In November, the FBI became "concerned" that Eric hadn't made contact, so they "formulated" a plan to get the group to the west coast where Eric was. Anna made contact with the members of the group and asked if they could meet and discuss their plans. At this point she began insisting on flying Weiner to California. Upon her arrival in California in November, Anna met with the Sacramento FBI, who told her to attend the meeting, listen to any mention of targets and tactics, and to keep her safety in mind. They also allegedly gave her further instructions as to what her role in the group should be - specifically that she should never suggest, don't be a leader, and not to give info unless she was asked for it.
Anna picked Weiner and Jenson up in Sacramento then drove them Eric's family's home, where the 4 were meeting. Eric allegedly gave the group copies of an interview with Derrick Jensen, which she claims was the basis for much of his thought. During the evening the group sat around a fire pit on the back porch, where they allegedly talked about their "plot" . . . .
During the weekend, the group decided to meet after Christmas. Anna volunteered to procure a cabin for them (which she had been instructed to do by the FBI - allegedly for her safety). . . .
In January, Anna drove Jenson and Weiner from the east coast (DC) to the cabin in Dutch Flat, CA. At this point Anna introduced the "Burn Book" to the group, telling them that they should record any recipes, plans, shopping lists, etc. Much of the first part of the book is taken up with recipes that Anna wrote in. . . .
On the 11th of January, the group traveled to San Francisco to visit chemical supply stores, to do research, and to allow Jenson to sell some of his writings. None of the chemical supply stores were open to the public, so the group stopped at a Wal-Mart in Sacramento on their return to Dutch Flat, where they allegedly purchased materials to construct an explosive device. . . .
After another shopping trip, the group returned to the cabin where Anna claims Eric began "tearing into" the salt substitute and "mixing in earnest." She also claims that he began emptying the powder from shotgun shells and testing fuses. Anna claims that Weiner and Jenson were reluctant to participate at first, but then began to actively participate. This was after the government played a tape of Anna berating Lauren and Zach for not being involved After heating the mixture, the glass bowl they were using busted and their days work was lost.
Anna claims that harsh words were exchanged the night of the 12th. They had an argument about people's level of involvement, and Anna said the argument escalated until she no longer felt comfortable in the group. . . .
She says she left the cabin to go for a walk and be alone. (At this point the government played a recording of the argument.) During her walk to be alone, Anna met with the FBI agents and told them that she didn't feel as if she could continue much longer. When she left the meeting with them, she knew that the other three would be arrested the next day. . . .
The USA concluded his direct examination of Anna by going back over her compensation from the FBI. She said she received approximately $65,000 over two years. $35,000 was for reimbursable expenses (gas, food, hotel, flights) and that $31,000 (plus change) was given to her in lump sums, sporadically throughout her work.
Trial Day 3: Cross-Examination of Anna
The morning began with [Eric's defense attorney Mark Reichel's] cross examination of Anna. . . .
[Anna testified that] she went to the Democratic National Convention, where she had adopted the persona of a medic because she knew that protesters needed medics and perceived them to be people in a responsible role. Anna has had no formal medical training. When Mark asked her how she handled this, she told him that she wore the attire, but if someone approached her for help she would "pass them off" to someone else. Next she went to Des Moines CrimethInc, where she met Zach and Eric. She affirmed again that her role involved A LOT of lying.
She spent 3 days in Des Moines with Zach and Eric, sleeping upstairs in a farmhouse with them. She said she couldn't recall whether Eric slept right next to her. She stated that at this time, she viewed Eric as non-threatening, inconsequential, and that he looked "gentler" than the other people there. Because of this she buddied up with him. Despite viewing Eric as "inconsequential" she nonetheless reported back to the FBI about him. She exchanged emails with Eric and they agreed to see each other in New York for the RNC. At the RNC she reunited with Eric and Zach and spent just as much time, if not more, with them. She claimed that during the RNC Eric made comments about illegal activities, which she reported, but after the RNC she did not report him as someone that needed to be followed. She then claims to have had no contact with Eric until June 19 of 05.
Mark then asked her why she would have written people in May asking about him. (He had an email from someone whom she had emailed in May asking Eric's where abouts) She responded that, at the request of the FBI, she was attempting to use old contacts to get back into protest circles. In the email Mark was referencing, she had written about the Halliburton protest and said, "I'd love to have a party, if you know what I mean" "You gonna' come play with me, then?" In the same email string she wrote "Do you guys need anything? Supplies, paint, chains, nails, pipe, anything? Tar and Feathers? Like I said, disposable income, so ask around all your contacts. It'd be safer to bring from outside as well. So what are we gonna do? :)"
Mark referred back to the guide lines she mentioned in her previous testimony and asked if this was a "suggestion." Anna responded that it was a "question about what supplies they might need." Mark asked if Eric had written her love letters, to which she responded that he had indicated his interest in her between August and May. Anna told Weiner in January of 06 that Eric had written her three love letters. Mark then asked her about a meeting on Weiner's balcony during the bio conference in Philly. She said that she did have an interaction with him on the balcony, just the two of them. She affirmed that he had written her a love email on October 26, so she was aware of his feelings for her in October of 05. Anna said she couldn't recall if he had written her previously. As a CS, she was supposed to give the FBI any important communications, so Mark pressed her about where the other 2 love letters had ended up. She said she couldn't recall. . . .
The cross then moved to the meeting in November of 05. Mark questioned her on conversations that she had with Weiner about the meeting. She said that Weiner initially expressed reluctance about coming out to California due to money problems. . . . Since the FBI wanted her on the West Coast, Anna volunteered to pay for Weiner's plane ticket with the understanding that Weiner would pay her back for it. But Anna even went so far as to pay for Weiner's cab fare. She said she didn't recall that, but in an email she clearly states that she will. In one email she states "I'm taking care of everything. Trust me." On November 4, Anna sent Weiner an email stating that she had an "awesome, devious" plan to get them all to California. . . .
In December of 05 she was granted Otherwise Illegal Activity authorization (OIA), which gave her approval to participate in criminal activity. She claimed she had not engaged in any criminal activity prior to this, but then admitted she had sat down in the street at G8 at one point. . . .
Mark then returned to the meeting on the balcony at Bio. She said that Eric had expressed romantic feelings for her at Bio. In a conversation between Anna and Weiner, Anna says "I kinda' called him on how much he had changed. And he said, yeah well, I had a lot of big influences. I asked him "like what?" And he goes, "you for one" I about near fell over and died. 'I knew you for a week!' So..." at which point Weiner stated, "cause he loves you..." . . .
When Mark asked Anna who paid for the group's supplies – who physically reached in to their pockets and paid, she responded that she did. After an immediate objection from the AUSA, and a nervous glance in the AUSA's direction, she changed her answer and responded that the money came from Eric and Weiner's pockets. She claimed that the group had a jar for money and shared costs. . . .
She claimed that she never had any romantic relationship with Eric, and that she had discussed how to handle his advances towards her with the FBI. The FBI had her fill out a behavioral analysis of Eric and returned to her a series of responses she could give for his advances. . . .
She said she got training on how to handle Eric's advances in November of 05 – this was after Bloomington, after the event in Philly, and after Eric's email to her in October. She said the email is what made her seek out advice. She said she was still working for the FBI when she lost the other two love letters. She affirmed that she did have to report anything significant from Eric to the FBI. . . .
For the end of her testimony, the government played a tape of Eric and Anna in the car, which she characterized as a record of Eric coming on to her and her putting him off. The tape was a conversation with Eric asking about the mixed signals Anna was sending him and her continuing to lead him on. At one point she says:
A: I definitely, I don't not like you. I don't really like you- I definitely like being around you- our energies really mesh well together
A: what you said at bio I thought was nice, and appropriate
A: twin souls . . . [Later on]
A: we're just. All of us are just friends and all of us aren't to together and all of us, I mean one of us doesn't like the other person, we all just love each other
A: and I like that
A: and I'm not sure if I'm ready to add that kind of relationship, sexual dynamics that kinda'.....to screw it up
A: I'm not sure if I'm ready to do that yet
E: no I totally hear that
While the tape was playing Anna stared at Eric and grinned, almost to the point of laughing. She said "I was instructed to placate him the best I could without shooting him down." Then Anna stepped down.
Government Examination of Ricardo Torres
FBI special agent Ricardo Raphael Torres was the next to testify. He was Anna's handler at the Philadelphia FBI. He testified that he put out a call to the FBI for informants to use at the Biotech protest in Philly. He said that they did this because "people associated with anarchists, the ALF and the ELF engaged in violent actions" at the biotech protests in San Francisco, such as riding their bikes through traffic. The Miami FBI responded to his request with Anna. Torres said that she was "tasked to work within the anarchist elements of the protesters" and to "get out there and see who was going to do bad things to the city". Torres said she was "extremely helpful".
. . . .
Torres testified that  the FBI ordered [Anna] to get Eric, Lauren and Zach together to "set the stage for a meeting of the conspirators". Torres testified that Eric wanted bomb recipes from Anna. Torres testified that he and Anna looked at "open source" information on explosives on the internet" and then met with Philly FBI bomb experts to create a recipe for something that was just an initiator, meaning that it will create a small flash that would only work if it were next to a large amount of explosives.
Posted by ptownpixie at 11:50 AM
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
Posted by ptownpixie at 3:40 PM
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
i really love mt st helens its fun to hike around even tho they have blocked off most shit so you cant get to much. what is there tho is pretty awesome to check out. theres alot of fallen trees and debree (not the band) everywhere. my freind Raina wrote this cool poem about it for a class. i liked it...so...here it is so...
Poem Inspired by Mt. St. Helens
it begins its destruction
a brief moment of silence
a single man stares in awe
a life’s work before him
Quiet blue sky
Gutted And Ripped Open
like the ground below
the weeds never had a chance
to feel the undertow
i doubt Dave felt
the hot Ash blow
before it turned day into night
hundreds of miles away
They say that ash cloud circled the earth…
No One believed there would be
When Lahar Lurched
through towns and train tressles
a grove of ghostly trees stand 27 years later
To those of us who missed it
what it must have been like
traveling right up to the center
of the crater
Chattering Chipmunks and
Blooming Blue Flowers
Busses, babies, and tours by the hour
And that Big Hole…
plumes of steam
rebuilding life after demise
Are We truly surprised?
Posted by ptownpixie at 6:07 PM
9 most baddass bible verses (click here)
...."This passage raises several thousand questions. Just off the top of our head:
What did Saul (the king at the time) want with 100 foreskins? Was he going to make a scarf?
Did David think this was a strange request?"
Posted by ptownpixie at 4:11 PM
for those of you not aware of who huntingdon life sciences is or what they do, they were crucial in the implication of the shaq 7 who were charged with 'terrorism' for running a website trying to shut them down....and because they were effective they were prosecuted.
h.l.s. has been tourturing dogs, specifically beagles, and has been filmed undercover on seveal investigations brutally beating dogs and commiting various other atrocities.
'your mommy kills animals' is a great documentary regarding the events occuring between h.l.s. and the shaq 7.
the main supporter, wachovia, who has had several major sharholders in here in portland who have been under attatck by the alf, has now pulled out.
here is the communique:
For Immediate Release
November 20, 2007
WACHOVIA SELLS ALL SHARES OF HUNTINGDON LIFE SCIENCES FOLLOWING ATTACKS
Animal Liberation Front Victorious in Campaign to End Support of Animal Abuser
The North American Animal Liberation Press Office learned on Sunday that Wachovia has sold all their shares involving the notorious animal testing company Huntingdon Life Sciences. Over the past several weeks the press office has received three anonymous communiques stating that illegal actions were taken against Wachovia. The two most recent were received by the press office just a few days ago and stated:
Friday night 11/9/2007
The entry gate to the walk up teller at a Wachovia satellite office in downtown LA was made inoperable by jamming super glue into the card access slot. A small sign reading "Wachovia tortures animals. Drop HLS assholes" was also affixed with super glue along with some other graffiti. Wachovia drop HLS or else this will not end. -ALF
Front of Wachovia branch in Brea, California redecorated with a lot of red paint. Cut your ties with H. L. S. Animal Liberation Front
Actions such as these against companies still dealing with the cruel and fraudulent company, have been occurring around the world in increasing frequency, and it appears that animal activists have not given up the campaign to force Huntingdon Life Sciences to end animal testing; a global campaign against the laboratory began seven years ago. Even though some high profile campaigners have been unfairly arrested and jailed for their attempts to expose the dirty secrets of this egregious animal testing company, activists appear to remain relentless in their resolve to see the the goal of SHAC (Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty) achieved.
Huntingdon Life Sciences (HLS), is Europe's largest animal testing company with laboratories in New Jersey and the United Kingdom. In five consecutive undercover investigations, they have been exposed to employ lab technicians simulating sex with the animals, punching beagle puppies and violating numerous animal welfare regulations. The company kills 500 dogs and other animals every day testing such products as oven cleaners, pesticides and pharmaceuticals. Before losing their NYSE listing two years ago, HLS lost their listing on the London Stock Exchange, after UK campaigners exposed atrocities occurring inside HLS facilities.
Posted by ptownpixie at 2:49 PM