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

07 November 2011

Colourful South African ancestry, the search continues

So my paternal ancestors arrived in South Africa on a ship aged 19 and 20 years of age. Yes they were colonisers and I apologise for that, but hell I do exist and it is interesting to know where I come from.

Great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather Stephen (19 years of age at the time) was a labourer and great granny (x8) Mary was 20 years old and according to the ship's list she is not given a profession, she is simply "the spouse" ... go figure?

They had no children. Thank goodness, because babies and young children often died during the 3-month voyage from England to South Africa. The Trollips travelled from Wiltshire to Portsmouth harbour on the coast of England from where they sailed on a ship called The Weymouth to Algoa Bay in the Eastern Cape.

My ancestors were part of the Hyman party. I have come across the group's motivation for why they should be picked to go to South Africa. (Times were tough in England where unemployment had hit an all-time high. There were 90 000 applicants and only 4 000 were accepted, so it's interesting to try and figure why my ancestors' application was accepted.)

Here is the Hyman party's motivation:

No. 30 on the Colonial Department list, led by Charles Hyman, a labourer of Short Street, Westbury, Wiltshire. This was a joint-stock party made up of labouring men and their families from an area that was hard hit by unemployment and excited by the prospects of emigration. Hyman described to the Colonial Department the basis on which his party was formed: 'The eleven men are persons of an irreproachable character, each having some small property and being unwilling to be in actual servitude have unanimously chosen me their Representative - if we are allowed to proceed to the Cape tho', I will not boast of any superior Degree of Wisdom to some of the others (who are my Elders) yet going in this Brotherly way I make no doubt by our joint exertions we shall be able to surmount those difficulties which will naturally be in the way'.

Hyman assured the authorities that he had no selfish motive in assuming the direction of the party, other than 'to become settled on a piece of land I can call my own and Every Person going under my direction will enjoy everything equal with myself.' The parish authorities vouched for his good character, but there is no evidence that they contributed directly to his party's expenses.

Deposits were paid for 11 men who sailed from Portsmouth in HM Store Ship Weymouth on 7 January 1820, arriving in Table Bay on 26 April. Benjamin Trollip obtained employment in Cape Town, where he remained. A son of Daniel Farley was born and died at sea. The Weymouth reached Algoa Bay on 15 May, and the party was located on the right bank of the Lynedoch River, naming its location Standerwick. The three Wiltshire joint-stock parties under Hyman, Ford and James were exceptional among the settlers in remaining virtually intact under their original leaders for the first three years of the settlement; Hyman ascribed this to their 'having encouraged and cultivated a spirit of unamity (sic) amongst each other'.

ADAMS, Edward 21. Mason.
DEBNAM, Isaac 38. Weaver. w Mary 39. c Eliza 17, John 16, Ann 13, Isaac 11.
FARLEY, Daniel 28. Labourer and naval pensioner. w Elizabeth 29. c William 5, Sarah 3, Joseph 2,
James (born and died at sea).
HYMAN, Charles 21. Labourer. w Elizabeth 26.
HYMAN, John William 16 (brother of Charles Hyman).
KING, John 23. Labourer and naval pensioner. w Eleanor 24. c John 2, Sarah 1.
NEAT, William 22. Labourer. w Susan 23. c Jane.
TROLLIP, Hester 18 (daughter of Joseph Trollip).
TROLLIP, John 22. Labourer. w Elizabeth 20.
TROLLIP, Joseph 38. Labourer. w Susan 39. c Benjamin 16, Rhoda 13, Jacob 11, Joseph 9, Mary Ann 7.
TROLLIP, Stephen 19. Labourer. w Mary 20.
TROLLIP, William 24. Labourer. w Patience 22. c Alfred 1.
WEAKLY, Joseph 27. Gardener. w Emma 26. c Mary 5, Joseph 3, John 1.


I'm interested to know my extended ancestry including the De Wet side (my paternal grandmother) and the Venter side (my maternal grandfather) as well as the German settlers in my maternal ancestry (my maternal grandmother) the Kriedemanns came to South Africa in the 19th century from Wollin in East Pomerania in what was then part of Poland, settling along the Eastern border of the Kei River.

German settlements abounded encompassing in addition the current towns of Stutterheim, Cathcart, Berlin, Hamburg, Macleantown and many other smaller settlements that were swallowed up with the establishment of the "Homeland" of Ciskei by the apartheid South African Government which prompted the eviction of the ancestors of the Kaffrarian German Settlers from their historical farms in these districts.

We sure do live in an interesting country!

11 October 2011

Water activists are always persecuted

This is Chinese environmental activist Wu Lihong sentenced to prison by a local court in retribution for a 10 year crusade against pollution in Lake Tai. Ironically, the lake has been suffering from a "pond scum" outbreak since May, verifying Wu's claims that the government and big business were polluting and endangering the ecology of a water system that provides water for over 2 million people.

What astounds me is the colour and content of the water in this image. If that isn't enough to put one off development then I don't know what is? Read more...

I came across Wu's information via Dr Bill Harding of DH Environmental Consulting who is doing wonderful work in South Africa, highlighting the state of our waterways. His blog is at:

22 September 2011

How to Avoid the Census

I received the following information on how to avoid the census. I'm not promoting this, I am just asking the question: Should one avoid the census?

What would be the reasons for wanting to avoid the census?

I know for a fact that governments are able to increase their loans from organisations like the World Bank, based on increased population stats. This allows us as a country to get deeper and deeper into debt. Should we do this? I don't like the idea of South Africa owing organisations like the World Bank billions of Rands.

Just a question!


How to Avoid the Census
  1. Complete, print and sign this letter.
  2. Give it to the Census worker when they arrive. Always be polite. They will probably threaten you if you don't comply.
  3. This approach is called "conditional acceptance." You are agreeing in principle to do what you are told, but first you have a couple of questions that need to be answered. Of course they cannot answer these questions because to do so would be to reveal a betrayal of human rights.
  4. If you wish, send this through to the Census authority first. Give them 7 days to reply and amend this letter accordingly depending on their response.

Dear Census Official, 

My name is [first name in lowercase, eg. John] of the family [surname in lowercase, eg. Smith]. I am a living, breathing sentient human being.
My research has led me to conclude that when my birth was registered, a corporate entity was created. This corporate entity is referred to as [write your title and whole name in all uppercase, eg. MR JOHN RONAN SMITH] with account number [insert your ID number] and is distinct from me, the flesh and blood human being. 
It is my understanding that my title, full name and ID Number represent a juristic person / corporation, and the record of this account is held at the South African Reserve bank using a master / slave computer software system. 
I have also discovered that my birth certificate is evidence of a financial instrument with a very real commercial value. This commercial value predicted by the amount of money I would earn as I grew up. Thus, it provides collateral for the South African government to float loans at interest without my knowledge or direct consent. 
If this holds true, then it stands to reason that a primary role of this Census is to re-evaluate my status as chattel property so that the South African Government can literally “sell” me and my fellow citizens to foreign bankers, as the governments of Iceland, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland and others did to their own people.
My research indicates that the purpose of the first census in 1904 was to give names to indigenous people so that they could be granted rights by the existing government. However, in order to be granted rights, it makes logical sense that one would first have to be stripped of the natural rights that he or she was born with. After all, you cannot grant rights to someone who already has them by the mere fact that they are alive.
As I believe in full disclosure, I will therefore only take part in the Census if the following questions have been satisfactorily answered. 
  1. Do I have a juristic person?
  2. Is there an account in my name linked to my ID number held at the Reserve Bank, or any other government department?
  3. Is there a bond or security registered in my name with a corresponding CUSIP number?
  4. Does the South African government receive loans based the ability of its people (ie. me) to pay it back?
  5. If yes, then:
    1. How does the government calculate the value of its people?
    2. How does the government connect me to the money that they have borrowed on my behalf?
    3. Does this loan include interest? If it does, then where is the interest supposed to come from in order to pay back these loans?
    4. Are any of the loans granted to the South African government created “out of thin air” using a book-keeping entry, or are 100% of all loans made using real, lawful money?
  6. Is the data collected from the Census linked in any way to the granting of loans made by our government?
  7. Is the census a form of contract? If so, please provide me with the terms and conditions of this contract.
  8. Am I a flesh and blood human being born with natural human rights, or am I a slave with no rights whatsoever, except for those which are granted to me by the South African Government?
Please note that I am intelligent enough to know when my questions are being avoided. I will only accept real, valid and direct answers to my questions above.
Once I have received a suitable response, I will happily take part in your Census. 
Yours Faithfully,
[first name in lowercase, eg. John] of the family [surname in lowercase, eg. Smith]

20 July 2011

In vitro to in vivo

In the office, an isolated biological element in glass
An experiment gone wrong
Creating something chimeric
Release the isolated genes
At dawn.

When we look again
They are sprouting everywhere
Wild and free
Walking through the open doors of our cages
At dusk.

Moving from in vitro to in vivo
Deliberate steps towards freedom
What would the non-human animals do?
I must follow
And trust.

Ex vivo and my heart
Separated from my body
Is the object of their gaze
Now lies bleeding on the hospital floor
At death.

29 June 2011

Exploring the wonderful poetry of Mary Oliver

Meanwhile the wild geese, high in
the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter
how lonely,
the world offers itself
to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese,
harsh and exciting--
over and over announcing
your place
in the family of things.

-Mary Oliver

09 June 2011

The great Mary Oliver

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"
Mary Oliver

06 June 2011

Winter wonderland

The route to work this winter's morn
Resembled the road to a terrestial Hades at dawn
Belching machines and bloodied skylines
Sidewalks paved with layers of grime.

More people arrive each day
Looking for the promise of a new tomorrow
They do not seem to notice the haze
Straight ahead they keep their gaze.

Outside my place of work
The encampment grows and grows
More people erect their cardboard rooms
I watch them bath under blankets as I arrive.

The smell is intense
Their desperation immense
I cannot avert my eyes
We exchange glances but that's all.

Chief Tshwane's domain, once pristine and free
Has become increasingly covered in tar and concrete
Geographically the world’s third-biggest metro
Pshychologically we become the rot in which we live.

I need to leave the city
To flee
To settle somewhere where there's still something worth defending
A wilderness worth fighting for.

Elephants make their own rules

Large roaming herds
Criss crossing the continents
Mammoths, mastodons, elephants
Moving through spacetime

Loving intensely and mourning their dead
Revisiting the graves time and time again
Crying sad tears for humanity. Lost.
Showing us the way, we miss the point.

Today they are boxed in. They resist.
There are few places left that welcome ellies
So they climb over zapping wires
Just to follow ancient instincts, and desires.

Great Mother elephant I salute you now.
I want to be like you. I will switch off the tv,
Follow your scent and become more like you.
Show me the way, my great Mother spirit.

30 March 2011

Nuclear plant boss hospitalised

Osaka - The president of Tokyo Electric Power Co, which operates Japan's stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, was admitted to hospital on Tuesday evening, local media reported Wednesday.

Read the article here ...

So what do we make of this? Here's my view for what it's worth.

When the shit hits the fan in big corporations, the CEO is suddenly ill, unavailable or resigns. We have seen this time and time again. Abdicating responsibility for destruction.

We should try these guys like war criminals. They have destroyed lives and destroyed the land for profit. Now that the truth is out they want to run and hide.

I am not specifically targeting CEOs either by the way because the same can be said for presidents and dictators. I'm sure Hosni Mubarak is going to be given a comfortable place to live out his life in peace and write his memoirs. It is probably the foot soldiers who'll be punished instead.

When are people going to realise that this is how the world REALLY works?

From Endgame by Derrick Jensen -Premise Five: The property of those higher on the hierarchy is more valuable than the lives of those below. It is acceptable for those above to increase the amount of property they control—in everyday language, to make money—by destroying or taking the lives of those below. This is called production. 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. 

Engineers knew tsunami could overwhelm plant

When Tokyo Electric president Masataka Shimizu apologised to the people of Japan for the continuing crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant he called the double disaster "marvels of nature ... that we have never experienced before".

But a review of company and regulatory records shows that Japan and its largest utility repeatedly downplayed dangers and ignored warnings -- including a 2007 tsunami study from the company's senior safety engineer.

Read the article here...

It seems despite research stating that there was a 10% possibility of a tsunami breaching the plant, Tokyo Electric did nothing to change its safety planning.

As I have said before, poor people, non-human animals and the environment (eg fracking the Karoo) are disposable as far as the money-grabbers are concerned.

And if the highly disciplined Japanese people are unable to run a nuclear plant with proper safety checks, warning procedures and openness, how on earth can we expect anyone else to do so?

07 March 2011

Invite from the newsletter

A revolution according to WikiPedia:

"A revolution (from the Latin revolution, "a turn around") is a fundamental change in power or organizational structures that takes place in a relatively short period of time.

1. Complete change from one constitution to another
2. Modification of an existing constitution."

On the other hand we have a rebellion:

"Rebellion, or uprising, is a refusal of obedience or order.[1] It may, therefore, be seen as encompassing a range of behaviors from civil disobedience and mass nonviolent resistance, to violent and organized attempts to destroy an established authority such as a government..."

What you are seeing in the middle east, in my opinion and I stand to be corrected, is a 'revolution'. The idea of kicking out a dictator and replacing him with a form of democratic government such as the one you may see in South Africa or the United Kingdom. I can not say if this is a good or a bad thing for the middle east since my only view is what the main stream media is portraying. And like many people, I do not trust a word the main stream media has to say and thus I have no opinion. However my instinct tells me that the upheaval in the middle east has nothing to do with the people and everything to do about a political change for the benefit of Western countries. I can assure you, no war has ever been started for the benefit of the people - it has been and always will be about big business, power and money.

Anyway, this news letter is about the idea of a 'revolution' vs a 'rebellion'

Which one is better for this planet? In my opinion while a revolution can in a short space of time effect great change, typically that change will be within a framework. And in this case within a pre-existing tried and tested political framework that like a maccano set, fits into a pre-planed global agenda.

On the other hand you have a 'rebellion' (the non-violent type) and this is what the Freeman movement is all about. It is about recognizing that if we play by the rules, the world we live in will be based on the 'illusion' of democracy and freedom however in reality the construct is such that we are in fact slaves bound by false belief systems.

It is my opinion that the only way we will ever stop the machine that is destroying this planet is by sharing knowledge and creating the desire in people to want to join a non-violent and peaceful rebellion based on knowledge and our collective power to stop the beast. So let me spell it out for you so that you can fully understand why it is important for you to become a rebel and why it is important for you to stop obeying the rules like a mindless robot. And why it is up to you to become accountable for the state of this planet as well as every living creature on it:

The short:

1. Fiat financial systems are unsustainable (fractional reserve systems such as the SARB)
2. These systems cause an exponential debt burden [through interest] and means we have to grow our economies constantly to stay ahead of the debt
3. This growing debt means we have to produce more stuff each year to cover the interest on the growing debt
4. Producing more stuff means moving ever more products from shelves to the garbage heap at an ever increasing pace
5. This means producing things that do not last to keep the machine moving
6. This means digging more recourses out the ground, chopping down more trees, building more parking lots and office parks, and malls etc.
7. It means we can not survive unless we rape our planet.

Is this what you want?

And did you know that you have the power in your hands to stop it. Yes little old you. You can break this system if you want to… To break it means to stop consenting to it… and this means:

1. Stop paying taxes, stop submitting returns, stop believing you are the legal name issued to you by RSA
2. Stop paying fines,
3. Stop using any kind of government issued documentation,
4. Stop using money
5. Refuse to consent to legislation and legal systems (always hold the common law high though)

What will happen?

Well things will get a lot worse than they currently are, things will break, services will stop, people will die. However if we do not do this chances are we will find ourselves having to look for a new planet to live on. If we do not suffocate the machine we could end up financing nuclear war. If we do not put our collective feet down, we are voting for destruction.

So what do we do?

Well each one of us will get up off our backsides, and we will start to rebuild our communities sans a money system (or bureaucracy or centralized government). Instead we will adopt a new attitude system (where we do for love and not for reward, we will stop judging others and fretting about what others are doing and we will simply focus on ourselves and what we out of love can do for others and without the desire for reward). We will build roads because we can. We will grow the resources we need, because we can. We will create better service systems, because we can. We will build spectacular and beautiful villages, because we can. We will look after each other and every creature large and small, because we can. We will invent new ways to do energy and we will invent and create things to last, because we can. We will throw away all legislated rules and instead bring up our children to have the desire and the instinct to naturally be in harmony with this earth, because we can. We will put memorials on trash heaps, dilapidated shanty towns, nuclear plants, war machines, oil fields, shopping malls, banking institutions etc. as a reminder to future generations of the dangers of selling our souls to greed and to self.

We can create anything we want...
Wake up, the dream is over, there is work to be done.

01 March 2011

squaring green circles: Free range? Not so much...

squaring green circles: Free range? Not so much...: "If you live in the Western Cape (South Africa), you'll probably know of a brand of dairy products called Fair Cape Free RangeTM. You ma..."

18 February 2011

Anglo eyes sacred land

Anglo eyes sacred land: "A subsidiary of mining giant Anglo American is considering mining coal near the environmentally sensitive Mapungubwe world heritage site in Limpopo."

Coal of Africa’s Vele colliery mining site, which lies 5.4km east of the Mapungubwe National Park & World Heritage Site. Picture: Nick Hiltermann

 How on earth does one get the Vhembe Biosphere Reserve internationally declared as a biosphere and, at the same time, allow a coal mine to be established there? 

02 February 2011

Google, CIA Invest in ‘Future’ of Web Monitoring

The investment arms of the CIA and Google are both backing a company that monitors the web in real time — and says it uses that information to predict the future.
The company is called Recorded Future, and it scours tens of thousands of websites, blogs and Twitter accounts to find the relationships between people, organizations, actions and incidents — both present and still-to-come. In a white paper, the company says its temporal analytics engine “goes beyond search” by “looking at the ‘invisible links’ between documents that talk about the same, or related, entities and events.”

update Feb 2011

Mubarak’s Going to Saudi Arabia, CIA-Backed Forecasters Say

Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule of Egypt is probably coming to an end, and that means he’ll likely leave Egypt right after he leaves power. (Dictators don’t usually stick around the countries they dictated.) So where would Mubarak flee? One data mining company, backed by the investment arms of Google and the CIA, has an educated guess.

“If you want to know where he’s going next,” says Recorded Future CEO Christopher Ahlberg, “you’ve got to know what he’s done in the past.”
George Orwell was right.

01 February 2011

Farmers apply for the right to cruelly murder our predators to protect their assets

As with all controversial legislation, notice of the proposed "Norms and Standards for the Management of Damage Causing Animals" (puke) was quietly slipped open for comment during the 2010 festive season when everyone was away on holiday, out of touch or unable to object.

Fortunately I was around and managed to submit my objection letter before the deadline of 26 December 2010. We had just 30 days to oppose these farmers and government officials who think they have the right to decide the future of our biodiversity and use cruel, murderous traps to maim, torture and kill our predator friends. All of this in the name of the untouchable god they call profit. I have seen non-predators caught in gin traps too mind you. Anything from Egyptian geese to aardvarks get caught.

In support of the proposed legislation, sheep farmers boldly dared to make presentations about how these leopards and jackals are affecting their export figures. It makes me sick the way money is still considered more important than biodiversity. If we allow these farmers and government officials to continue to dictate to us, we are going to be left with a decimated environment in just one generation. Let's take our inspiration from the Egyptians and start fighting back. I'm gatvol, are you?

The deadline was subsequently extended to 31 January 2011. Dead on cue, today I received an automated response from the department of environmental affairs confirming receipt of my objection. (Less than 24 hours after the deadline. They really are in a hurry to get this one through!)

So despite the fact that the bullet is through the church on this one, please keep an eye on its progress and object again if necessary.

There is a wonderful organisation called the Landmark Foundation which goes out to help and where possible save and rehabilitate animals maimed by gin traps and the like. They are also behind a wonderful initiative to launch the Fair Game brand which indicates products that are wildlife friendly. they are working with companies like Woolworths and Pick 'n Pay. Please support them if you have the financial means, alternatively watch out for the Fair Game label and buy only products with that label.

I think through the food I buy and I look for environment and earth friendly options, but one does not always think about the woollen socks you buy to keep warm in winter. They may well be made from wool, from a sheep raised on a farm where the farmer ruthlessly uses every means possible to eradicate leopards, jackals and other magnificent non-human animals.

Thank you Landmark Foundation for raising these issues and for doing something to make a difference.

31 January 2011

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction

Enslave yourselves if you want, you horses of instruction.  Graze in peace and safety inside your masters' fences.  Subjugate yourselves to his whip, avail yourselves to the labour of his fields, and propel him to battle if you will.

As for me, I'll roam free with the tigers, carrying inside me the power of their wrath.  I'll move with patient wisdom through the shadows of the night, watching for the tender spot to sink my fangs... waiting to strike when the time is right. 

And I decide where to strike.

And I decide when the time is right.

William Blake

18 January 2011

Crucifying cats, our protectors. Why?

There are some images flying around Facebook depicting a cat being crucified by youths on the streets of Tshwane. I cannot find the source of these images, but the images exist, therefore this event did take place. The details remain sketchy.

The date mentioned is 6 January 2011, but that too is unconfirmed.

What I do know is that people have forgotten the truth. By that I mean the original truth, their humanity, their true purpose, their souls. According to Credo Mutwa, who is the keeper of ancient wisdom (the Guardian of Umlando), cats are our protectors. "All catlike animals, from lions to domestic cats, were brought to this earth we believe, to protect human beings and other life-forms ... they protect us from vermin that are harmful to us - but they also protect us from invisible enemies that we fear more than anything."

South Africans are persecuting lions in trophy hunting farms across the Free State, the leopards on the koppies of the country, the rooikat in the silence of the night ... and they are persecuting cats on the streets of Tshwane in broad daylight.

Zulu eulogy to a cat - translated by Credo Mutwa
You are the cat, tamer of human beings, not tamed by them!
You are the animal we all fear, favourite of sorcerers, darling of witches, treasured by sangomas.

You are the cat, guardian of the village, protecting us from enemies we can and cannot see!
Sent by the sky gods to shield the world from invisible foes and visible vermin.
Oh, cat, master of life!
You guard me while I sleep, I honour you, dear cat,
And feed and nourish you, for it is said that the gods and ancestors will bring eternal suffering upon any human who stoops to harm you.

17 January 2011

Someone just died right behind me

I was sitting in my cage, I mean office, trying to get back into mid January work mode, when I heard a wail from outside the window, followed by another wail and yet another. A woman was clearly in agony.

I got up from my desk and glanced out the window. It was only once the visual reality struck me, that an icicle razored down my spine.

On the ground below the 30-storey high Poynton Building - headquarters of the Department of Correctional Services - lay a body, of a man I believe, accompanied by paramedics and security guards.

I hear sirens and hooters all day, so had ignored those. I had not seen the person jump or fall. But the wail of a woman realising what had happened, was different. It was primal. It drew my attention, as wails have done for millennia.

What drives someone to commit suicide? I guess there are many and varied reasons. But as I sit here in this 21st century metropolis in the year that the planet's human population is due to hit 7 billion, I wonder if we have not taken things too far?

Rest in peace my brother, whoever you are.

Lionesses with manes

I was elated to learn that there are lionesses who develop manes.  As someone who does not fit in with the "norms and standards" of gender identity myself, the fact that one of my key totem animals also features a spectrum of gender expression is good news indeed.

Copyright Grant Atkinson -

These special lionesses are found near Mombo Camp, Moremi Game Reserve in the sublime Okavango Delta which is renowned for its healthy lion population. This makes my heart happy amidst all the lion persecution that's going on further south, where lions are being farmed in trophy hunting sausage machine.

Grant Atkinson who writes a blog on Africa Geographic relates a lovey tale of telling tourists about these juvenile male lions, only to learn later on that day that the lions are in fact beautiful young lionesses ... with manes.

Sigh, unfortunately I will never be able to stay at Mombo Camp where prices are quoted in US dollars (gulp US $1400 to $1800 per person sharing per night).

Will have to try and find my way there using camp sites in the generally vicinity, but this is definitely being added to my bucket list.