Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. Edward Abbey

11 December 2009

Thank you Joao Silva you are still one of my heroes

So the ANC won again and "our" president attended the cruel Ukweshwama ceremony in Nongoma last weekend.

Experts have always said that a nation that abuses animals, also abuses women, children and the weak. Well here's proof of why SA has one of the highest rape and child abuse rates in the world.

Jacob Zuma, wake up and change the course of history now, before it's too late. This kind of behaviour is abhorrent and belongs to a previous era. Stop supporting such outdated practices. This ceremony fell away several years ago and I have no idea why it was revived. Kings should be sent to the corridors of history and so should their bizarre and abusive ceremonies.
It's as bad as the practice of testing young women's virginity using a kudu horn. DESPICABLE! It's as bad as colonisation, slavery, land grabs, genocide against the indigenous, the domination of alternative viewpoints by the juggernaut that is western civilisation etc etc.

Finally to photographer Joao Silva who took this shot, for The Mercury, you are still and always will be one of my heroes. It's guys like you and your bang bang buddies who are the conscience of the nation and are brave enough to be there and capture the moment so that the rest of us can see what happened and question ourselves and what we are doing right now to change the horrible, horrible state of our 2010 nation!

You can visit the website of the brave people of Animal Rights Africa, if you have the stomach for seeing some more photos of the cruel and unnecessary murder that took place in Nongoma last weekend.

06 December 2009

Dubai cash dries up in Cape

As a follow-up to my earlier post about the teetering tower of babel that is Dubai in late 2009, came an interesting spin-off here in South Africa. It seems all sorts of repurcussions are being felt:

http://www.mg.co.za/article/2009-12-04-dubai-cash-dries-up-in-cape


If my memory serves me well [as Siouxsie Sioux was want to say], I think Dubai World owns not just the V&A Waterfront, but several game farms and the Bourke's Luck potholes area in Mpumalanga. I remember the battle fought by locals when that deal went through, smoothly facilitated by some greased palm in the provincial government at the time.

I wish we were more like the Somalis, or the Ogoni, or like the Ethiopians were prior to the 21 st century. They were never willing to sell their souls to conquerors.

04 December 2009

Light a candle for the bull tomorrow 12 to 3pm

News has just come through that the ukweshwama ritual bull murdering ceremony will go ahead in Kwa-Zulu Natal tomorrow 5 December.

Please think of this individual bull tomorrow. I'm not sure if lighting a candle is enough to help him through the experience? Perhaps we animal activists need to think about getting ourselves to the sites of such unnecessary, cruel killings and doing whatever it takes to physically stop the murder.

The time of polite letters and battling in court rooms is over. But the time to take a stand and stop such cruel practices being inflicted on non-human animals everywhere has come.

Culture and tradition must change. These things are not set in stone. They have never been.

I include below, the ARA press release ...

For Immediate Release: 4 December 2009

THINK OF THE BULL TOM0RROW

Animal Rights Africa (ARA) is extremely disappointed that the Judge ruled against us. We are also saddened and frustrated that the Respondents refused to allow ARA to monitor and document the ukweshwama ritual.

ARA has not seen the Judgment as yet but we will be studying it with a view to what our next steps will be. It is a sad fact that attempts at dialogue with the Zulu Royal Household, the Commission on and the relevant government departments fell on deaf ears and that this issue landed up in the courts. ARA will also continue to seek dialogue on this issue and we therefore call on all these entities and the ANC to urgently facilitate such dialogue.

That ARA lost this case is distressing to us, however this pales into insignificance for us in comparison to the fact that the fate is sealed for the innocent bull that will be used in the ritual tomorrow.

As part of a global movement that cuts across all continents, all cultures all ethnic and racial groups, ARA will continue to work for compassion, respect, dignity and inclusive justice.

We ask that people across South Africa, Africa and the world that have shown concern for the fate of this particular bull light a candle between 12pm and 3pm tomorrow (Saturday 5th December) and spend the day in reflection and introspection, in solidarity and compassion with this particular bull.

Contact persons for ARA:

Steve Smit +27 (0) 82 659 4711

Michele Pickover +27 (0) 82 253 2124

ARA email - info@animalrightsafrica.org

ARA website – www.animalrightsafrica.org

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere" Martin Luther King

02 December 2009

The bull is primary and justice inclusive

Animal Rights Africa (ARA) is heartened by the decision yesterday of the Pietermaritzburg High Court Judge, Nic van der Reyden, to postpone until this coming Friday 4 December, his decision on whether or not to issue a court order against the bare-handed ritual killing of a bull at the Zulu First Fruits Festival at the Royal Kraal in KwaZulu-Natal this coming Saturday, December 5.

“Whilst we were hoping for a ruling yesterday in favour of the bull being saved from what we consider to be a cruel and protracted death, this indicates to us that the judge is giving serious consideration to the cruelty aspects of the killing as contained in our founding and supporting affidavits”, said ARA spokesperson, Steve Smit.

ARA is extremely encouraged by the overwhelming groundswell of support it has received from South Africans, including many Zulus, who understand the motivation behind our legal action.

However, we are distressed that our action, taken on behalf of the victim, in this case the innocent bull who has moral agency outside of human institutional or cultural arrangements, as well as our call for mercy and compassion, seems to have been misunderstood and deliberately subverted by those who claim to speak on behalf of a so-called homogenized culture that is seemingly “off limits” to, and above public debate. In questioning the way ukweshwama is practiced, the rights view is not anti-culture, not anti-freedom, not anti-human. It is simply pro-justice, maintaining only that the scope of justice be seen to include respect for the rights of animals. As contentious as challenging cultural practices is - one only has to look at how existing cultural practices predispose and expose women to HIV for example -it does not mean that we should not or that we should be intimidated in to not doing it.

“Contrary to claims made by those opposing ARA in this matter, it is not about cultural intolerance, not about an imposition of perceived “western” values, not about disrespect for the Zulu monarchy or Zulu people – it is simply and undeniably about cruelty to a sentient being, and any cultural practice that not only involves cruelty but also contravenes anti-cruelty legislation must be subjected to public scrutiny. Our culture of animal rights demands that we oppose cruelty wherever it occurs. Of great concern to us is the fact that the respondents refused to agree to the event being filmed or monitored for Parliamentary viewing and review. One can only ask why they should be so resistant to allowing the actual process of killing the bull to be preserved on film in parliamentary records” Smit said.

Globally it is increasingly recognised that violence against animals is a precursor to violence against people, especially women and children. It is therefore possible that serious efforts to incorporate humane practices in cultural practices will also help, in the long term, curb violence within communities and society in general.

ARA wishes to reemphasize that there needs to be respect for different communities that co-exist in the same society and where there is a conflict of rights in a multicultural society and a constitutional democracy a court must decide. In response to the many questions by the media as to how ARA will respond if the Judge rules against the application, we remain optimistic that our application will be successful but should this not be the case we will be guided by our legal counsel insofar as the legal options available to us. Whatever the outcome we know we have helped to move the discussion on inclusive justice and the recognition of animal rights.

The simple existence of a practice or belief or habit is not in and of itself a justification for its virtue. Might does not make right and prejudices die hard. We are aware that the animal rights movement – just as the slavery abolitionist movement, the women’s movement and the anti-apartheid movement – is not for the faint-hearted. Whilst this particular event has generated widespread media and public interest, we must emphasize that ARA, as part of the international animal rights movement, is concerned about cruelty to, and exploitation of, animals wherever, however and for whatever reason it occurs. Animal rightists are the voice for the billions of animals worldwide who every year suffer and die at the hand of humans. Culture-based cruelty is just one of the many areas of our concern and action on behalf of animals.

30 November 2009

AFRICA: Civil war more likely with climate change

"Increased temperatures associated with climate change are likely to significantly increase the incidence of civil war in sub-Saharan Africa within the next two decades, according to a new study by US researchers." Source: University World News. Read more ...

I refrain from commenting on this because I would have preferred the research to have been done by African researchers, but I know there is an element of truth in this, because I am hearing warnings from some of the oldest and wisest on the continent. There is no doubt that big change is coming.

27 November 2009

Zulus to kill bull, whites to lobby for slavery and witch-burning

As a follow up to my post on 2 November: Bull to be torn to pieces in barbaric annual ritual - take action! it was with a certain amount of relief that I read the following piece on Hayibo this week. I really think the piece hits the nail on the head. Satire can be so powerful!

Zulus to kill bull, whites to lobby for slavery and witch-burning
ULUNDI. White South Africans have welcomed a traditional Zulu bull-killing ritual, saying that it opens the door for them to celebrate their own outdated but enjoyable cultural traditions, such as keeping slaves, burning witches and cutting off the heads of royalty. King Goodwill Zwelithini is reportedly "uncomfortable" with this. Read the article on Hayibo.

photo by mmagallan, http://www.sxc.hu
I am so envious of writers who can be clever and witty about such a tragic issue and yet still get a good message across in the process. I think they get people, who otherwise might not be interested in this issue, to sit up and take notice. That's powerful.

By the way, you can still take action against this outdated, antiquated and brutal so-called "ritual": https://secure.peta.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=2649

Is towering Dubai about to topple?

Like the biblical towers, the skyscrapers of Dubai were built with their tops in the heavens and the motivation was ego and greed.

"However, the Tower of Babel was not built for the worship and praise of God, but was instead dedicated to the glory of man, to "make a name" for the builders." Source Wikipedia

So as I read the headlines this week, I begin to wonder when western civilisation will collapse. All civilisations collapse sooner or later, but in the past two years we have had several scares eg the oil price spike, the collapse of investment banks, the 2008 economic crisis and crash, mortgage madness and bankrupting of entire nations eg Iceland ... and now this week it's Dubai teetering on collapse.

Now I'm not a betting woman, but this one has me interested. The what-if scenarios are mind-boggling. First of all, the markets shuddered and shook this week when the emirate asked creditors of state-owned Dubai World and Nakheel to agree to freeze or pause their billions of dollars of debt.

"Dubai World had $59-billion of liabilities as of August, a large proportion of Dubai's total debt of $80-billion. Nakheel was the builder of three palm shaped islands off Dubai." M&G online

Apparently the banks are worried and international construction firms are waiting with bated breath concerned that "money due from Dubai's grandiose construction projects, including the world's tallest building, would not be paid".

I for one will not be sorry to see an end to the madness that is modern Dubai. Building synthetic islands shaped like palm fronds and encouraging synthetic people to shop themselves to death is not exactly the way forward for humanity. It is depraved. There is a huge amount of oil, energy and other resources required to keep Dubai going. It is crazy creations like this that are sucking the planet dry.

So, will Dubai collapse or not? Only time will tell, but the next couple of weeks will be interesting.

I never thought I would become interested in economics, but in recent years I have become rivetted. Bloomberg reports that Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank may be owed $1.9 billion by Dubai World, making it the largest creditor outside the emirate to the state company seeking to reschedule debt.

Here in SA, Murray and Roberts is pretending to be in control by stating confidently that it will be paid for its work on Dubai airport. Me, I'm not so sure, but hey for the sake of South African employees of M&R, I sure hope so.

I don't want people to lose their jobs. But I really do want us to build a different world to the one we are so feverishly pursuing right now.

The article below paints a wonderful picture of what a job means to some people whose sweat and tears are building the monstrosities that are Dubai, Oman and other middle eastern "delights".

Oman

There was a wonderful first person account on Culture Change last week, about life in Oman, one of the neighbouring countries of the United Arab Emirates. I am sure the picture painted in this article is very similar to life for the poverty-stricken construction workers of Dubai.

24 November 2009

I love "good" news

Members of native tribe clean up civilisation's mess ... yet again:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/25/us/25fishnets.html?_r=1

The irony of this story is not lost on me. Will they ever learn?

17 November 2009

Author of The Enemy of Nature to speak in SA

From my trusty independent left listserv comes the following good news:

Joel Kovel (author of The Enemy of Nature) Speaks in SA (coinciding with week of climate justice protests)

Since 2003 Joel Kovel has been Editor of the quarterly journal, Capitalism Nature Socialism. He is the author of many books including:
  • The Enemy of Nature
  • The End of Capitalism or The End of the World (Zed, 2002) and
  • Overcoming Zionism (Pluto Press, 2007).
Joel will speak in Jo'burg and Durban in December.

the event I am interested in is a discussion with Joel Kovel on Eco-Socialism. Discussants include: Trevor Ngwane (THE MAN!); Jackie Cock and Tristen Taylor (EarthLife Africa).

Date/Time: Wednesday, 9th December, 6pm.

Venue: AMEC Boardroom, 38 Louw Geldenhuys Street, corner Ingalele Road, Emmarentia.

DON'T MISS IT!

10 November 2009

Leave Congo's tar sand in the land

The Wall Street Journal has written about environmentalists criticising a proposed African oil sands project. For those of you who haven't heard of oil sands or tar sands and their impact on the environment, have a look here:

This photo by David Dodge of The Pembina Institute gives an idea of how arboreal forests in Alberta, Canada have been converted into oil sands tailings: www.oilsandswatch.org

More amazing pics here:
http://www.edwardburtynsky.com
Google map of the tailings ponds:
http://maps.google.com

So as planet Earth, our Mother, has the last of the oil sucked from her veins, psychopaths in the mining and oil industry are turning to the world's tar sands to keep our 5 litre, V12 SUVs spewing along. Unfortunately Africa has her share of tar sands and the psychopaths have them in their sights/crosshairs.

Photo by David Dodge of The Pembina Institute

Even more unfortunately for us Africans, these tar sands are located in or near biodiversity hotspots and ancient tropical rain forests ie our lungs.

This photo by Dan Woynillowicz of The Pembina Institute shows how
oil sands extraction has fragmented the forests of northern Alberta.

Italian energy behemoth Eni SpA plans to wreak this destruction upon Congo Brazzaville in order to squeeze oil from the tar sands of this country. Environmentalists are warning that this project could endanger one of the world's largest remaining tropical rain forests.

Even the west's Heinrich Boll Foundation, in a study by Congolese human-rights organisations and western researchers, has pointed out the many risks involved.

But there are many guilty parties in the tar sands business, Eni is just one of them Have a look at this article: BP Set To Commit 'The Biggest Environmental Crime in History and this one about KBR: A Halliburton Subsidiary.

Oh and then there's the targeting of environmental activists opposing the oil sands and labeling them - GULP - terrorists: Govt Threatens Tar Sands Activists with Anti-Terror Laws.

David Dodge, The Pembina Institute

Tar sands = the dirtiest oil on earth

The issue is the polluting and high carbon emission technology used in this form of oil production. It goes against all pretence of global efforts to tackle climate change. Eni's project would be the first time the process of producing synthetic crude from oil sands - a mixture of sand, clay and bitumen - is applied on a large scale outside of Canada.

Tar sands tailings ponds, Canada. Photo by David Dodge,
The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society.

Sadly arboreal rain forests are often also home to indigenous people living in tune with Nature. In the case of the Athabasca tar sands in Canada, the indigenous Athabasca Chipewyan people have been laying their lives on the line trying to fight off the oil and mining giants to save the land but with limited success. Read about their brave efforts here: http://www.ienearth.org/cits

We all need to start fighting like indigenous people to save wilderness areas.

22 October 2009

What we can learn from the Maori

The Maori world of work

Unlike us modern westerners, within the broader family group, each member of a traditional Maori community did the job for which he or she was best suited ...

but here's the clincher:

... and rank depended not on the accumulation of goods but on the extent to which a person provided them for others. A tohunga was a 'specialist' (e.g., a woodcarver was a tohunga whakairo rakau) but few were engaged full-time on their special skill. When not so occupied they would join in the ordinary everyday work of the tribe from which even the ariki (chief) was not exempt (source).

Now how could we apply this to 2009? Well first off, we should all be working in jobs designed to "provide goods for others". That would mean provide for our families right? That would mean providing for our children, our future. Right?

That means our jobs should be about protecting biodiversity, revering nature/our future/our children (it's all the same thing) and save earth's "resources" for a rainy day.

Instead our jobs are about making profit for corporations today, at the expense of tomorrow.

We should rise up and refuse to work another minute until all employers (especially big corporations) enact gender-sensitive, earth-friendly, child-relevant, future-friendly budgets, policies and business plans.

Hey it's just an idea ... and it's a start.

20 October 2009

Witch hunts alive and well in Mzansi

SAPA reports that two women were brutally murdered in the Eastern Cape in the past four days for being witches.

I had hoped people had moved beyond this in the 21st century, but hey I am no longer surprised by this complete lack of humanity among civilised people. The point being that this would never happen in an uncontacted, indigenous community ie pre-civilised humans did not abuse each other like civilised humans do. San elders, even women elders, for example, were revered and worshipped, not disrespected and slaughtered. Ugh!

Here are the gory details:

2009/10/20 TWO women, aged 86 and 79, were murdered in separate incidents in the Eastern Cape after being accused of using witchcraft.

The latest incident was reported in Tsolo at 4pm yesterday, where an 86- year-old woman was stabbed to death, said Superintendent Mzukisi Fatyela. The alleged culprit, a 25-year-old man, had accused her of using witchcraft on him.

In a separate incident in Lusikisiki, a 79-year-old woman was stoned to death on Saturday. She, too, was accused of using witchcraft. Police said four men aged between 18 and 20 saw the woman walking home on Saturday and began throwing stones at her. “She was severely injured and died at the scene. All four were arrested for murder.” — Sapa

08 October 2009

We're at tipping point - RIGHT NOW

When you are standing on the edge of a cliff, a step forward is not progress. -- Anonymous

06 October 2009

will we ever learn?

When man interferes with the Tao,
the sky becomes filthy,
the earth becomes depleted,
the equilibrium crumbles
creatures become extinct
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, ca. 550 BCE)

18 September 2009

How to prevent rape

If a woman is drunk, don’t rape her.
If a woman is walking alone at night, don’t rape her.
If a woman is drugged and unconscious, don’t rape her.
If a woman is wearing a short skirt, don’t rape her.
If a woman is jogging in a park at 5 am, don’t rape her.
If a woman looks like your ex-girlfriend you’re still hung up on, don’t rape her.
If a woman is asleep in her bed, don’t rape her.
If a woman is asleep in your bed, don’t rape her.
If a woman is doing her laundry, don’t rape her.
If a woman is in a coma, don’t rape her.
If a woman changes her mind in the middle of or about a particular activity, don’t rape her.
If a woman has repeatedly refused a certain activity, don’t rape her.
If a woman is not yet a woman, but a child, don’t rape her.
If your girlfriend or wife is not in the mood, don’t rape her.
If your step-daughter is watching TV, don’t rape her.
If you break into a house and find a woman there, don’t rape her.
If your friend thinks it’s okay to rape someone, tell him it’s not, and that he’s not your friend.
If your “friend” tells you he raped someone, report him to the police.
If your frat-brother or another guy at the party tells you there’s an unconscious woman upstairs and it’s your turn, don’t rape her, call the police and tell the guy he’s a rapist.
Tell your sons, god-sons, nephews, grandsons, sons of friends it’s not okay to rape someone.
Don’t tell your women friends how to be safe and avoid rape.
Don’t imply that she could have avoided it if she’d only done/not done x.
Don’t imply that it’s in any way her fault.
Don’t let silence imply agreement when someone tells you he “got some” with the drunk girl.

That's right. It's up to the perpetrator to stop rape! It is not the responsibility of the survivor. GEDDIT!!!

Source: Someone shared this piece on a web forum and I just had to repost. The source is unkown and the piece seems to be floating around the blogosphere. So I'm not sure who to credit, but I sure do agree with the writer.

14 September 2009

Be worried, be VERY worried

Zuma's new God squad wants liberal laws to go

The National Interfaith Leadership Council, formed by Rhema church leader Ray McCauley and closely associated with President Jacob Zuma, flew its conservative colours this week, saying that it wants to revisit laws legalising abortion and same-sex marriages.

Last week the council (NILC) entered the debate about the ­Judicial Service Commission’s decision to drop its investigation into Western Cape Judge President John ­Hlophe. It attacked the challenge to the JSC by Freedom Under Law, chaired by former Constitutional Court judge Johann Kriegler, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s support for it, saying it could “only serve to further erode the integrity of the judiciary and undermine the confidence of the people in it”.

Read the full article by Mandy Rossouw and published in the M&G here ...

Tutu is the conscience of our nation. Lately he has been criticised by various quarters. Isn't it strange how the once left-wing of the ANC is becoming more and more reactionary and more and more conservative? Talk about counter-revolutionaries!!!

Hmmmm ...

I have lived under tyranny before and do not want to do so again.

11 September 2009

Salvador Dali - fascist & animal abuser

Some time ago, while playing with Blogger's new features, I threw on a gadget called Salvador Dali fine art of the day. Two weeks ago, while attending Sydne's first art exhibition, I pointed out a work based on a Dali painting and she mentioned to me that she was not a Dali fan as he had disrespectfully used animals in his various creative ventures.

I did some research and have not able to find anything about dogs chained behind a car ... yet ... but I was horrified to read that he pranced around with a live, wild ocelot as some sort of trophy, and threw cats in the air, along with pails of water to photograph them (28 times in one day).

And them I came across something worse. Dali supported Franco's regime:

"For every political assassination carried out by Mussolini's fascist regime, there were 10,000 such assassinations by the Franco regime. More than 200,000 people were killed or died in concentration camps between 1939 (when Franco defeated the Spanish Republic, with the military assistance of Hitler and Mussolini) and 1945 (the end of World War II, an anti-fascist war, in Europe). And 30,000 people remain desaparecidos in Spain; no one knows where their bodies are." - Counterpunch

Read the full article here.


So I just want to say thank you to Sydne for alerting me to Dali's indiscretions. There was a terrible irony in featuring Dali's art on a blog supporting animal rights. I have corrected the error. No more Dali for me!

08 September 2009

Update on chicken farmer post of 17 Aug

"The South African Poultry Association (Sapa) has suspended the membership of Boskop Layer Chicks (BLC) over the killing of day-old chicks, it was confirmed on Monday."

Dear friends [sarcastically] let's celebrate! All is well, now that an agreement has been reached that instead of dumping the chicks in a concrete dam, they are going to GRIND THE LITTLE BIRDIES IN A HIGH SPEED GRINDER.

Well now isn't that a relief. You can all keep eating Klerksdorp Fried Chicken with a clear conscience now, because the chicks are no longer being dumped, but ground to death.

PHEW!

Here's the updated story in M&G ...
Here's my orginal post about alledged animal abuser Jan Serfontein ...
Here's a link to "What wings are for" the beautiful story of Ruby and Ivy

This is a real story - believe it or not

walmart workers beat shopper to death

There are several news articles about this incident, but I thought I should link to the one on International Supermarket News ('priceless' name!), where they describe the incident as follows:

"A woman at a Wal-Mart branch in Jingdezhen, China, was beaten to death by staff members who suspected her - merely suspected her - of stealing. Wal-Mart has made no comment on this incident." - link.

The woman, 37 year old Yu Xiaochun, was followed by five workers after making a purchase at the supermarket, as they suspected her of stealing. The Wal-Mart workers stopped her and demanded the receipt. She refused because they were not wearing the walmart uniform and did not properly identify themselves, They proceeded to beat her.

She died two days after the incident and 2 of the 5 walmart employees have been arrested for the incident.

Let me take this opportunity to remind you of 2 of the Endgame premises:

"Premise Five: The property of those higher on the hierarchy is more valuable than the lives of those below ... If those below damage the property of those above, those above may kill or otherwise destroy the lives of those below. This is called justice."

"Premise Thirteen: Those in power rule by force, and the sooner we break ourselves of illusions to the contrary, the sooner we can at least begin to make reasonable decisions about whether, when, and how we are going to resist."

Full list here.

Side with the living

A note to those who would demonize nature

by Derrick Jensen

The other night I saw a commercial for a PBS program that breathlessly described how orcas “dominate” the oceans. And the nature program I had the misfortune to see before that talked of different species of bears “conquering” each other’s territories. The program repeatedly emphasized the powerful bite of one particular type of bear—making sure we got the point by always playing scary music when these bears were depicted—and only late in the program did viewers learn that these bears were exclusively scavengers, with powerful jaws not so they could “conquer” and “dominate,” but so they could break the bones of those already dead. This projection onto the natural world of this culture’s urge to dominate is so ubiquitous ...

Read the full article on the commondreams website or the Orion website.

And whatever you do, don't forget to click on the comments section at the bottom of both articles. There are some wonderful debates that follow.

02 September 2009

W Cape baboons need just 5 mins of your time to save their lives


Please take five minutes to sign Wynter Worsthome's petition to save Bart and other "dispersing" male baboons trapped in the little tail of land known as the Cape Peninsula.

Sign the petition here: http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/stop-the-culling-of-cape-towns-baboons.html

The authorities have ended the contract with Baboon Matters who have for the past 11 years seen to the monitoring of the baboons in this area.

The powers that be are going to cull, "euthanase" ie shoot, these guys. if we don't do anything about it The petition calls instead for these baboons to be translocated to wilderness areas where they have a chance of establishing their own troops.

If you live in Cape Town, please email the mayor now: Mayor.Mayor[at]capetown.gov.za and ask them to done the right thing and translocate Bart and his buddies instead.

Amazing baboon photos: http://www.wildnorthwest.org/galleries/baboons.html

01 September 2009

Racial and gender equality will not solve social inequality

Even if, one day, the brave activists who fight for racial, sexual and gender equality declare their battles won - there will still be a need to continue the fight to level the playing field between rich and poor.

I read an article in the London Review of Books that clearly supports this statement.

Here's the link to the article by Walter Benn Michaels who teaches English at the University of Illinois, Chicago: Who Cares about the White Working Class?

I would like to add another battle that looms - even beyond class war - and that is the battle for equality of species. As Leo Tolstoy said: "As long as there are slaughterhouses, there will be battlegrounds." As long as we see animals and plants as "resources" and not fellow earthlings, there will be battlegrounds ... unless of course everything is destroyed before we get to that point.

I hear Cormac MCarthy's book The Road paints a gloomy post-apocalyptic vision of earth where most life has been destroyed and people resort to cannibalism to survive. Far fatched? Hmmm, I'm not so sure?

By the way, animal rights activists and earth-firsters are often accused of being obsessively morbid and focused on the negative. Nothing could be further from the truth. Just the blue sky alone makes us smile. We are in fact very easy to please. Just give us clean air, water and wilderness.

31 August 2009

Live your life authentically - not as though you're watching it unfold on a screen before you

In short and simple article, Derrick Jensen makes the connection between hatred of women, hatred of nature and the death urge of modern civilisation. A masterpiece to be read and reread. Print it out if you must, do so on the back side of an already used sheet of paper. Read it whenever you are lost and need direction. I do.

"This is our culture's fundamental flaw. I don't see a tree, I see dollar bills. I don't see a river, I see kilowatts. I don't see a woman "this woman, standing in front of me. I don't see anything, but I project into this space where this woman would be standing, were she to exist, what I've been trained to see. I see a temptress, maybe, or a receptacle for my sex. Or maybe I see every woman who hurt me. The ones who said they loved me, then ran away, or the ones who said they loved me, then tried to change me. I cannot give my heart to someone I don't see, so I give it to no one. I don't give it to woman, man, salmon, tree, or frog."

http://www.derrickjensen.org/hope02.html

25 August 2009

Should we seek to save industrial civilisation?

George Monbiot has been on the right track regarding peak oil and climate change for some time, but he has never gone far enough for my liking. He didn't quite come out strongly enough and connect the dots to conclude that civilisation, development, progress and endless expansion must end.

Today I popped in to his blog to see the above headline and I rejoiced. A strong media voice is saying it out aloud. YAY!

Okay so Monbiot didn't say it himself, but it's on his blog at least. He is publishing a debate with deep ecologist Paul Kingsnorth who says:

"Sitting on the desk in front of me are a set of graphs. The horizontal axis of each graph is identical: it represents time, from the years 1750 to 2000. The graphs show, variously, human population levels, CO2 concentration in the atmosphere, exploitation of fisheries, destruction of tropical forests, paper consumption, number of motor vehicles, water use, the rate of species extinction and the totality of the gross domestic product of the human economy.

What grips me about these graphs (and graphs don’t usually grip me) is that though they all show very different things, they have an almost identical shape. A line begins on the left of the page, rising gradually as it moves to the right. Then, in the last inch or so - around the year 1950 - it suddenly veers steeply upwards, like a pilot banking after a cliff has suddenly appeared from
what he thought was an empty bank of cloud.

The root cause of all these trends is the same: a rapacious human economy which is bringing the world very swiftly to the brink of chaos. We know this; some of us even attempt to stop it happening. Yet all of these trends continue to get rapidly worse, and there is no sign of that changing soon. What these graphs make clear better than anything else is the cold reality: there is a serious crash on the way."

Read the full debate. It is music to my ears to hear leading voices in the western world starting to question the very existence of civilisation.

19 August 2009

Toxic "super dump" near Vaal gets the nod

The Weekender reports that govt has given the go ahead for the building of a slime dam near the banks of the Vaal River and adjacent to a nature conservancy. This despite vehement resistance from local communities and environmental activists.

"First Uranium subsidiary Mine Waste Solutions , which will build the mega tailings storage facility, is already clearing the ground and erecting pipes, says Mariette Liefferink, CEO of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment."

According to Liefferink, the proposed super dump will further compromise the already compromised Vaal barrage catchment area, particularly with regards to salts from heavy metals, including radioactive uranium. Read the article by Sarah Hudleston here ...

This article reminds me of the 20 Premises in the book Endgame by Derrick Jensen. For example:

Premise Nineteen: The culture’s problem lies above all in the belief that controlling and abusing the natural world is justifiable.

Premise Two: Traditional communities do not often voluntarily give up or sell the resources on which their communities are based until their communities have been destroyed. They also do not willingly allow their landbases to be damaged so that other resources—gold, oil, and so on—can be extracted. It follows that those who want the resources will do what they can to destroy traditional communities.

View all 20 Premises here ...

17 August 2009

No surprise, chemical companies and US authorities knew dangers of Agent Orange

August 10, 2009 was the first Orange Day organised in Vietnam. It comes as no surprise to read that not only the chemical companies, but also the US authorities, were aware of the potential impact of spraying Agent Orange on vast tracts of Vietnamese jungle in the late 1960s.

Yet they went ahead and did it anyway.



Also of significance is the news that a small percentage of Vietnam vets in the US have managed to get compensation from the chemical companies over the years, but very few Vietnamese victims have been successful.

There's some excellent material by Jon Dillingham and others on the international journal of socialist renewal website and the Thanh Nien website. The latter is the flagship publication of the Vietnam National Youth Federation.

12 August 2009

Farm dumps 'economically worthless' male chicks

This farmer in North West has been dumping up to 70 000 male chicks into an empty dam on his property each week. The practice has been going on for 70 years.

I find the article and comments by the public interesting, as they are largely focused on what this is doing to the environment etc etc.

No one is talking too boldly about that in any given week up to 70 000 young non-human babies are lying and dying in the sun on a hot man-made concrete floor.

FUCK! I hate this so-called civilised society of ours. It is so brutal. Not even the roman empire compares.

Let me repeat one of my favourite quotes by Elizabeth Costello / JM Coetzee:
“We are surrounded by an enterprise of degradation, cruelty, and killing which rivals anything the Third Reich was capable of, indeed dwarfs it, in that ours is an enterprise without end, self-regenerating, bringing rabbits, rats, poultry, livestock ceaselessly into the world for the purpose of killing them.”

Every year, throughout the world, over 45 billion farmed animals are killed for food consumption.

29 July 2009

Pollsmoor prisoners and their cats

TTouch doyen Linda Tellington-Jones has a wonderful story on her blog at the moment, about the cats of Pollsmoor Prison, some of who were originally rescued from Robben Island and thus literally followed in the footsteps of our beloved Madiba.

Some of the prisoners actually throw sheets out their windows so that the cats can climb up and into their prison cells. Once there they befriend the cats and share their food with their new friends. Read more ...

The article is also a tribute to animal lover Rita Brock who made this whole project possible. The full article appears in the latest issue of Cat Fancy magazine.

21 July 2009

When an empire crashes the lesbians take over

This title is not as far fetched as it may seem. In fact, just recently when Iceland went bankrupt and came tumbling down earlier this year, it was Johanna Sigurdardottir who was brought in as prime minister to pick up the pieces. She is the modern world's first openly gay leader.
Boudicea
Boudicea statue

The pale men in suits (ie the government of Iceland) ran like wimps (resigned) when Iceland crashed and it was a modern day Boudicea - Sigurdardottir and a cabinet comprising 50% women leaders - who were brought in to clean up the mess.

Thanks to Diana on the dj forum for sharing this astounding info!

Let me not get too carried away however. There is a dark cloud to this silver lining. Iceland has long resisted joining the EU. Their currency was strong and their natural geysers provide free electricity. Their environment is flawlessly clean.

They had no reason to tie themselves to the shackles of the EU. There are political commentators who view the crash of Iceland as being a coordinated manoeuvre by the suits/elites in Europe to force Iceland to join the EU, so that they (the elites) can plunder it.

This is coming to pass as we speak. I wish the women running Iceland right now would reconsider this issue!

Saving Iceland from plunderers website ...

11 July 2009

John Zerzan: On Modernity & the Technosphere

Anarcho-primitivist John Zerzan explores the link between civilis/zation and campus massacres.

Remember: time and technology are NOT neutral scientific realities, but as Zerzan has asserted, they are carefully constructed means of enslaving people.

07 July 2009

Animal lab goes underground

Listen to this one ... the University of Iowa will build an underground animal laboratory to fend off attacks from "animal rights extremists" (sic).

I don't know whether to laugh or cry. One good thing is that the animal abusers will have to spend more money building these damn labs now.

Amazing images from Honduras

This image from the recent stand-off at Toncontin Airport in Honduras really moved me.



Ordinary people came to greet ousted President Zelaya (a friend of Hugo Chavez and Raoul Castro) as he tried to return to the country.

His plane flew over the airport a couple of times before aborting its landing attempts and headed for Managua, Nicaragua. The plane was not given permission to land as military personnel and vehicles blocked the runway.

Another day, another police crackdown, another military coup, another clampdown, the lowdown, the breakdown. Sigh!

02 July 2009

Taking ownership of my slave ancestry

I'm a white South African woman who takes daily responsibility for all that apartheid was and is. I have apologised and still do apologise for it. I take responsibility for all that western civilisation - spearheaded by the global, corporate white elite - is doing to the planet, to indigenous people, to animals and to the fast diminishing wilderness.

But I am also a woman and my sexual preference is not that of the majority. So on two counts I intimately understand discrimination. Therefore I distance myself from the perpetrators who continue to deny any wrongdoing. I side with the indigenous, with the four legged ones, the winged ones and the tree people. I have always aligned myself with human and non-human slaves.

As such, it was with great relief that I finally traced the slave heritage that I instinctively know courses through my veins. This has also come to me in visions and dreams. By the way, it is ironic that those who could claim slave "stamouers" would be far greater among the coloured and white people of South Africa, than among the black people of South Africa.

My slave ancestry is compliments of the "stammoeder" Angela of Bengal, who was shipped from the Bay of Bengal in India to the Cape. In 1655 she was first "bought" by Jan van Riebeeck and later "sold" to Fiscal Abraham Gabbema. On 13 April 1666 Gabbema signed a document which would lead to Angela's freedom. She was the third person to be freed from slavery at the Cape. She subsequently married Arnoldus Willemsz Basson and their descendants are people with surnames like Bergh, Basson and De Wet.

Angela's daughter Anna de Coningh (or de Koningh) is the stammoeder of 90% of the De Wets in SA. As such, I can safely assume that my paternal grandmother - who was born Bertha de Wet - has passed down slave heritage to me.

So with that in mind, what am I do to fight for the slaves in the world today. I recently read a quote that there are more slaves in the world today than at any other time in history. And they were refering only to human slaves. There are also billions of non-human slaves, bound, gagged and caged in zoos, feedlots, tree farms and laboratories. I owe it to Angela of Bengal and Anna de Koningh to fight back.
By the way, the Cape received their slaves mainly from the Indian Ocean basin, since that was the trading domain of the VOC. Initially the Dutch captured slaves, who came from West Africa, on the sea from other slaving nations.

According to www.stamouers.com : "Later on slaves starting arriving in ship loads. The first of these arrived 28 March 1658 at the Cape on board the ship Amersfoort, with 174 slaves from Angola. Slaves came from Guinea, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia, East Indies, Abyssinia, Mozambique, Madagascar, Japan and Angola and many other places.

"Unlike many other slave societies whose slaves were homogenous, the Cape had a real cosmopolitan slave population. The Cape was like the tower of Babel, with very diverse nationalities and languages. The slaves places of origin can mainly be divided in four equal part, Africa, Madagascar, Indian sub continent, and East Indies (Indonesia)."

Bengal remains a place of intrigue for me, especially in West Bengal where a tribal and Maoist movement has been fighting the Indian State. The people socially boycotted the police, and stopped them from buying foods and other essentials, which forced the police to leave their camps in the Lalgarh area making it a virtual free zone. I see a government offensive recently forced them out.

01 July 2009

47 rhinos poached in Kruger last 15 mths


45 white rhinos and two endangered black rhinos — have been poached in the Kruger National Park in the past 15 months, Water and Environment Minister Buyelwa Sonjica said in a report tabled yesterday.

I'm simultaneously horrified, but not surprised by these facts and figures.

Southern Africa - like anywhere on the planet where there still exists wilderness - is being plundered.

Less glamorous but no less worrying is the extermination of abalone on our coastlines, the genocide of the Knysna sea horses etc etc. (Seahorses are thought to have evolved at least 40 million years ago and have survived from ancient times with only very small changes in body structure or organ function.)

Read the Business Day report and weep!

18 June 2009

US uses old mafia law to nab green activists

The crackdown on eco-activists in the US in intensifying. Green activists can be sentenced to up to 8 years in prison for nonviolent civil disobedience. That may be for example doing tree sits to stop loggers from cutting down old growth forest.

This latest news takes the cake though. Apparently the "justice system" is using laws originally intended for the mafia to charge these brave people.

Read and weep ...

Could we be the generation that runs out of fish?

The process of trawlering is an oceanic weapon of mass destruction

says Johann Hari in The Independent

In the babbling Babel of 24/7 news – where elections, bailouts and beheadings blur into one long shriek – the slow-motion stories that will define our age are often lost. An extraordinary documentary released next week, The End of the Line, forces us to stop, and see. Its story is stark. In my parents' lifetime, we have killed 90 per cent of the world's fish. In my lifetime, we will finish off the rest – unless we change our ways, fast. We are on course to be the people who wiped fish from the earth.

Read the full article here ...

Ja, ja I know a blog is not supposed to be a rehash of news reports from the web but hell this guy says it so well and I just needed to link to it for posterity. Enjoy your sushi!

03 June 2009

What the whales need from us


The whale strandings and their subsequent executions on Kommetjie beach this past weekend have elicited many different and emotional responses from human animals. But not the responses I would like to see.

Just like the whale who swam up the Thames river about two years ago, these wonderful children from the sea came with a message for us. They literally laid their lives on the line screaming at us to pay attention to what we're doing to the oceans.

Pushing them back into what has become an inhospitable and toxic place for them is not what they need from us.

They are asking us to clean up our act. To stop oil and gas exploration using sonic booms that deafen them. These booms are causing whales to beach themselves because their primary method of orientation and communication - ie sound - has been destroyed.

They're asking us to stop corporations from dumping “at the smallest, 5,000,000 gallons per day of toxins…everything from benzene, acrylic nitrile, mercury, copper, you name it, they got it.” In 1997, the US Academy of Sciences estimated the total input of marine litter into the oceans, worldwide, at approximately 6.4 million tons per year. Source: http://fertileground1.ning.com/page/indicators-of-ecological

Then there's the shipping traffic, nuclear tests and god knows what else going on in the oceans.

Let's start listening to these most beautiful of beings, these ancients of the ocean. One of the country's leading animal communicators and my teacher was on the beach with the dying whales and she had this to say afterwards:

"They chose the Cape beach so as not to have to navigate the stormy, rough seas around Cape Point in their weakened state, and because they want humans to witness (the) whales’ dying. On the bigger/planetary level too. They said “the Mother” (the ocean) is being poisoned, and so are they. It’s time humans woke up to this and witnessed the effects.

"They predicted that there will be more strandings in the next moon cycle (which I found interesting given that the International Whaling Commission sits again in the last week of June apparently.)

"The whales appreciate the compassion and care that people showed in trying to return them to the water, but would have wished to be given the choice, i.e. pointed out to sea/re-floated once, and then left to die in peace if and when they returned."

Another well known interspecies communicator had this to say:

"Most of us take the ocean and her children for granted. The whales are calling for us to pay attention."

THE WHALES NO LONGER FEEL SAFE IN THE OCEAN - WAKE UP HUMAN ANIMALS AND CHANGE YOUR WAYS BEFORE YOU DESTROY THE PLANET AND HENCE DESTROY YOURSELVES!

Jeez, when and how did humans become so selfish and so damn stupid?

Biowatch wins

I have unconfirmed reports that the Constitutional Court ruled in favour of Biowatch. Will confirm as soon as possible. But if so, this is great news!

Groundbreaking Biowatch case before the ConCourt today

Judgement in the Biowatch case is expected in South Africa's highest legal forum, the Constitutional Court, at 10 am on 3 June 2009. Biowatch is an NGO dedicated to lobbying for sustainable agriculture, biodiversity, food sovereignty and the rights of small farmers.

BioWatch took on the ARC, the state and Monsanto in this instance. Now we await the final decision ... is the ConCourt earth-friendly or not???

As soon as I have access to the judgement, I will post it here, as South Africa's corporate media is unlikely to give it much prominence.

More about the case here:
http://www.biowatch.org.za/docs/courtcase/briefing160209.pdf

25 May 2009

Community resists mining giants - activists arrested

According to Jubilee South Africa, 47 activists from Sekiming in Limpopo, go on trial in Mokopane today for resisting mining in their community.

Isn't this just typical, the justice system being used to protect mining companies instead of local communities?

Anyway the details are that community activists from Sekiming, near Mokopane Limpopo are on trial today and tomorrow. These activists were targeted and arrested in a crackdown on the community's resistance to mining in their area as well as their resistance to the unrepresentative Section 21 companies that claim to represent the community.

This community has forced out 12 out of 13 prospecting rigs from Lonmin that were placed there without their permission. The community is also fighting the removal of a school, Seritarita, that the Department of Education is attempting to move due to mine blasting by Anglo Platinum. The vast majority of community members do not want the school moved.

The number of arrests iof community activists advocating for their rights around mining in Limpopo is now approaching 500 - these have all occurred since 2006. These arrests can have a critical impact of frightening and intimidating activists into submission - and this should not be tolerated. However, despite the fact that activists have been arrested in the villages of Sterkwater, Ga-Pila, Ga-Molekane, Mohlohlo, Sekuruwe, and Sekiming - the communities vow to fight on as the troubles they face at the hands of the mines have not improved.

For more information, comment, or to send messages of solidarity (sms's welcome and appreciated!), please contact: Phillopos Dolo (Coordinator, Jubilee Mokopane Platinum Committee) 073 789 2489, David Moja or Mr. Sehala at 079 607 8330 (Sekiming) , or Brand Nthako (Jubilee NEC, in Johannesburg) 082 628 1362.

More info here ...

07 April 2009

Saving the global financial system

should we do it
no no no
can we do it
no no no

phew
it's too late
the house of cards is toppling
bye bye bye

financial logic
has devoured the world
g20 imf worldbank dystopia
bye bye bye

the path to 2050
is paved with urban gardens
definancialise our minds
downsize simplify radicalise

should we do it
yes yes yes
can we do it
yes yes yes

valhalla
utopia
nirvana
legodimo

03 April 2009

Cell Phones, Conflict Minerals, and the Worst Sexual Violence in the World

"Our insatiable demand for electronic products such as cell phones and laptops is helping fuel waves of sexual violence in a place that most of us will never go, affecting people most of us will never meet. The Democratic Republic of the Congo is the scene of the deadliest conflict globally since World War II. There are few other conflicts in the world where the link between our consumer appetites and mass human suffering is so direct."

This article sums up the forces behind the 200-year-old war raging in Africa's Great Lakes region. While I may not agree with all John Prendergast's proposed actions to combat the abuse, I do admire him for actually doing something.

Where he proposes:
  1. Contact the largest makers of cell phones, portable music players, digital cameras, PCs, and video games, and urge them to sign the pledge.
  2. Commit to only purchasing electronics from firms that have taken and are abiding by the conflict minerals pledge.
  3. Educate fellow consumers and activists about the crisis in Congo, the role of conflict minerals, and how they can be a part of the solution.
I would substitute with:
  1. Boycott all producers or electronic goods. If you must own a cellphone, buy second-hand.
  2. Only purchase second-hand electronic products so as not to add to the burden on the earth of producing these items.
  3. Educate people about the crisis in Congo, the role of conflict minerals, and how they can help tear down western civilisation.

06 March 2009

Elders

"When an elder dies, it is as if a library has burned." - - African Proverb

In the case of Aunty Eileen, a church, church choir and a huge community spirit has gone as well. Let's hope those of us who had the priviledge of knowing her, will remember to follow her example and be GOOD PEOPLE and remember to be good to each other. Aunty Eileen always had a twinkle in her eye and was the most giving person I have ever known.

I think heaven is a little more twinkling today than it was week ago!

10 February 2009

South African dock workers refuse to unload Israeli vessel


South African dockers are doing their bit to show solidarity with the people of Gaza, by refusing to unload an Israeli ship in Durban harbour. The ship later quietly left Durban harbour, and according to the APRS tracking database, the Johanna Russ (the ship in question) is now off the coast near Richards Bay.

Guess they're gonna try their luck at RBay?

Anyway, I think it's good to speak up when abuse takes place and what happened in Gaza recently was not a fair battle, but a massacre. A massacre of poor people who've had their olive trees cut down, their fuel, water and food supplies tampered with, and their human rights violated.

So, I say well done dock workers of eThekwini. Well done for speaking up!

South Africa-Palestine: Victory for Worker Solidarity
Anarkismo.net - Feb 6, 2009
The Johanna Russ, flying an Antigua flag, is owned by M. Dizengoff and Co., an established "pioneer of the modern era of shipping business in the Middle ...
The Tale of Two Apartheids Dissident Voice
all 4 news articles

Ship evades protesters
Independent Online, South Africa - Feb 8, 2009
The Johanna Russ was expected to dock on Sunday and the Cosatu-aligned South African Transport and Allied Workers' Union had pledged not to offload the ship ...

06 February 2009

Environmentalist Sentenced to 21 Years as a “Terrorist”; Violent Racists Receive Half That

Marie Mason, a longtime environmental activist and mother of two, was sentenced this afternoon to 21 years in prison, as a “terrorist,” for non-violent property crimes in the name of defending the environment. It’s a historic sentence, the longest yet for any of these Green Scare cases. Read more ...

... and fellow south africans if you think our fast-becoming fascist state is any different ... think again!

the insane crime levels in south africa are being used to introduce more and more draconian measures, the police are being given more liberty to use violence against suspects and violence is becoming a vicious cycle.

first they came for the environmentalists and I said nothing, because I am not a bunny hugger,
then they came for the gay and lesbian people, but I said nothing for I am not queer,
then they came for the anarchists and I said nothing for I am an upstanding citizen who believes in democracy,
then they came for the intellectuals, I said nothing, because I am a hard working labourer,
then they came for the metalheads and punks, but I have no tattoos or piercings, so I said nought,
by the time they for me, there was no one left to speak out ...

my apologies to martin niemoller for the corruption of his powerful anti-nazi poem

btw it's interesting to note that the friends of jz website also refers to niemoller's poem, implying that "they" are out to get him. wonder who he thinks is out to get him? I thought he got rid of mbeki, pikoli and ngcuka. is there any opposition left within the anc?

03 February 2009

Zam magazine publishes poem by JZ accuser

Khwezi has written a poem published in the Dutch magazine - Zam. The poem is called "I am khanga".

Khwezi is the woman who accused ANC leader Jacob Zuma of rape. After the trial, when Zuma was found not-guilty by the courts, his supporters hounded her out of the country. She sought and was granted exile in the Netherlands.

I am unable to find a direct link to the poem in the magazine (I think the contents of the latest issue are not yet available online). Fellow blogger - Kameraad Mhambi - has however provided the words of the poem here.

It makes for interesting reading. Please go and have a look, read and debate. Oh the poem is available on the AFRICA IS A COUNTRY blog site too.

Visit the Zam magazine website.

If you work, you cannot dream

Young people should never work. Those who work cannot dream; and wisdom comes to us in dreams. You ask me to sell your product. Shall I sell my soul? You ask me to stay at my desk and build the organisation. It makes me feel empty. Then when I die I shall be but a shell of a real person. You ask me to sell my minutes, hours and days for little pieces of paper? I don't want them. I don't want to be rich. I want to be wealthy and wise.

"My Young men shall never work. Men who work cannot dream; and wisdom comes to us in dreams. You ask me to plow the ground. Shall I take a knife and tear my mother's breast? Then when I die she will not take me to her bosom to rest. You ask me to dig for stone. Shall I dig under her skin for her bones? Then when I die I cannot enter her body to be born again. You ask me to cut grass and make hay and sell it and be rich like white men. But how dare I cut off my mother's hair?" - Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce

28 January 2009

Halleluja those science whizzes are going to save us ... again

Those geniuses called scientists are at it again. This time they're going to "save the earth" by strewing iron powder into the Antarctic Ocean to "combat global warming".

FOOKIT!!! - a tip of the hat to Punk :)

They're insane. I wonder what the residents of the Southern Ocean think of this? The whales, elephant seals and penguins and bluefin tuna must be PISSED OFF. The tuna are already being fished into extinction and now they have to deal with iron powder soup. Grrrr

Read on and weep ...

Image courtesy of the cool people at www.fishbase.org
proof that there are good scientists in the world.

14 January 2009

Today's tribute goes to Tim DeChristopher

Posing as a Bidder, Utah Student Disrupts Government Auction of 150,000 Acres of Wilderness for Oil & Gas Drilling
In a national broadcast exclusive, University of Utah student Tim DeChristopher explains how he “bought” 22,000 acres of land in an attempt to save the property from drilling. The sale had been strongly opposed by many environmental groups. Stephen Bloch of the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance said, "This is the fire sale, the Bush administration’s last great gift to the oil and gas industry.”
democracy now article

Guerrilla Tactics at Oil-Lease Auction
Activist Drives Up Prices With Bidding
washington post article

07 January 2009

Jack Forbes quote

For us, truly, there are no “surroundings.”

I can lose my hands and still live. I can lose my legs and still live. I can lose my eyes and still live.

. . . But if I lose the air I die. If I lose the sun I die. If I lose the earth I die. If I lose the water I die. If I lose the plants and animals I die. All of these things are more a part of me, more essential to my every breath, than is my so-called body. What is my real body?

We are not autonomous, self-sufficient beings as European mythology teaches. . . . We are rooted just like the trees. But our roots come out of our nose and mouth, like an umbilical cord, forever connected with the rest of the world. . . .

Nothing that we do, do we do by ourselves. We do not see by ourselves. We do not hear by ourselves. . . . We do not think, dream, invent, or procreate by ourselves. We do not die by ourselves. . . .

I am a point of awareness, a circle of consciousness, in the midst of a series of circles. One circle is that which we call “the body.” It is a universe itself, full of millions of little living creatures living their own “separate” but dependent lives. . . . But all of these “circles” are not really separate—they are all mutually dependent upon each other. . .

sigh ... the man is a genius
thanks to Koala for drawing this beautiful quote to my attention.

Facebook and the CIA

"...let’s have a look at who invested money in Facebook and who could have a say in how that information is used. The first bit of venture capital, $500 000, came from Peter Thiel, previously founder and CEO of PayPal. Peter Thiel is now involved in Vanguard PAC, an American ultra-conservative organisation.

Then Accel Partners gave Facebook $12,8-million in venture capital in May 2005. Accel’s manager and Facebook board member James Breyer previously served on the board of NVCA with Gilman Louie, CEO of In-Q-Tel. To get an idea of what In-Q-Tel is about, check the copy on its “Our aim” page, which states the following:

“Launched by the CIA in 1999 as a private, independent,
not-for-profit organisation, IQT was created to bridge the
gap between the technology needs of the Intelligence
Community and new advances in commercial technology.”

by Anja Merret in techleader.co.za, 2007