December 8, 2011

The Socrates Decision


Last sunday I found out about Socrates, the Brazilian football player, who had passed away. Only 57 years old. I remember him fondly. As a young teenager I used to watch Brazilian football matches in 1982 and 1986 during the World Championships. Socrates also played and scored some magnificent goals during that time but sadly never lifted the cup.

When I read about Socrates I was having a drink and smoking a cigarette. Ironically, these 2 things plagued Socrates most of his life. Although being a doctor, he made no secret of being a heavy drinker and smoker. Prior to his death he was hospitalized twice with bleeding in the digestive track. He recovered but attracted one final fatal infection a couple of months later.

Personally, I had major problems with my intestines as well. Just 2 years ago I was operated twice after developing abscess' and later on fistulae. Spend months recovering from what turned out to be an intestinal infection, a surgeon remarked to me that it looked like Crohn's disease. It's also a condition that keeps coming back. I only drink a fraction of what I consumed when I was younger. Smoking a pack a day however continued.

Last weekend was weird. Spend the morning mostly in the bathroom relieving myself. In the afternoon I looked up articles on the internet about intestinal problems and found out that smoking can have a tremendous effect on the digestive system. Than I visit CNN on the internet with my cigarette and drink in hand and I click on the article about Socrates. That was my last cigarette...

December 4, 2011

Dude, Where's My Car? XII


Why are car thieves often such bad drivers? I mean if you take the profession of stealing cars at least learn how to drive at high speed. Otherwise you'll simply wind up in jail like this fellow.

November 26, 2011

Dag van de Verontwaardiging






Pictures from the protest in Amsterdam last sunday called 'Dag van de Verontwaardiging.'

Oc Am


The Occupy Amsterdam camp last sunday.

November 23, 2011

Fogger 2


Last week's midday sun, for a moment shinning through the dense fog.

November 18, 2011

Imperial Tropes


“We face the threats from rising powers — China, India, others — that we have to always be aware of and try to make sure that we always have sufficient force protection out there in the Pacific to make sure they know we’re never going anywhere.”

Leon Panetta
(US Defense Secretary)

November 13, 2011

Zeitdam


Shots taken from the Zeitgeist Netherlands HQ, overlooking de Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal, Amsterdam.

November 10, 2011

Dutch Treat 3


Check this out. Right after the Second World War in 1946 the Dutch government had plans to annex territory from Germany. You learn something every day. The plans were denied by Allied command in light of tensions with the Soviet Union and the necessity to build a strong, new Germany to confront the communist threat.
The Dutch annexation plan was actually the second proposal in their quest for compensation. In 1945 the Dutch state demanded 25 billion guilders from the Germans. Needless to say that this plan also didn't come to fruition. In the end Germany paid the Netherlands the amount of 280 million marks. Read more about it here. From my perspective it also shows the contemporary mindset of colonialism, seize every bit of land that you possibly can.

Sketchzoid #41

November 8, 2011

Dutch Treat 2


Interesting bit of news surfaced today in the newspapers. The Netherlands, along with the U.S.A., had formulated a plan to military intervene (invade) the South American country of Suriname. In 1986 the Dutch government was very concerned about its citizens who were residing in Suriname. The latter being a former colony of the Netherlands who gained independence in 1975. The resulting democracy was short lived since in 1980 a military coup overthrew the government and declared a socialist republic. Under the leadership of Desi Bouterse a number of citizens were executed in 1982 and a civil war ensued.

Most fascinating some 25 years later is that an invasion plan was actually considered at the time. The current Dutch cabinet remarks that the plan never reached the point of a political decision and remained in the consideration 'stage.' However, the ministers who went public today refuse to reveal the associated documents to the public. They simply remain classified. Which in some way is also revealing, secrecy still being the name of the game.

November 4, 2011

Summerback, Again


Amazing weather patterns this year. Summer was downright bad with weeks of continuous rain in July, which normally is the time here in Holland to enjoy the beach. We didn't get a chance. Oddly enough autumn provided some days at the beach and that is quite unusual. Normally we have that fine English weather, wind and rain. Today the temperatures got up to 18C and you could walk around outside in your shirt. Normally you'd need a winter jacket already. Just last year we had snow and frost in November. Seeing the news last week it was America's northeast who got the winter surprise. Strange stuff.

November 3, 2011

Greek Tragedy (2)

Holy crap, what's happening in Greece? On my way home this afternoon I ran into a friend who was waiting for the bus and he enlightened me about the 'crisis' in Europe. In another twist and turn Greece decided to let its people vote about the financial aid package (and subsequent austerity measures) through a referendum. This send shockwaves through both the markets and other nations that make up the European Union. Good chance of course that the Greek people will vote it down.

Watching a Dutch newspaper website which monitors the latest information regarding the Greek political situation it's evident that a lot of people are worried. It's also unclear at the moment if the referendum will proceed. There seems to be a great deal of political infighting in Greek parliament, and safe to say that isn't helping either.

Their situation can be described as followed. They are screwed, one way or the other. If they decline European help there's a good chance they will be ousted from the European Union. Should they accept, the financial situation of every citizen will drastically decline. Ironically, they have no one to blame but themselves. Although I'm no free market advocate I can see that 'the game' simply caught up with them and the simple axiom that everyone usually understands is that you can't spend more than you have.

There's a whole mechanism beyond politics and that is the money creation and immediate connected debt itself.

Governments that don't abide by the monetary rules are the first to feel its consequences. Greece has also been very deceiving and has proven to be an unreliable partner. When joining the European Union they presented false financial data. Their deficits where in reality much worse. Goldman Sachs was so kind to offer their assistance.

Greece failed to recognize the first monetary rule. Money is created in a bank, and has to go back to the bank. Failure to do so means foreclosure. Banks rule, not nations.

October 28, 2011

The Real Justintempler


Just a couple of comments from the notorious Zeitgeist troll 'Justintempler,' who apparently enjoys creating havoc on the internet.

Occupy Amsterdam (Pics 22-10-11)







October 24, 2011

October 23, 2011

Thoughts On Occupy Amsterdam

Spend a few hours yesterday and the week before on saturday at "Occupy Amsterdam." Especially last week was amazing since Beursplein 5, the square where the protests were held and which is right in front of the Dutch stock exchange, was pretty much packed with people. Police estimated that around 1500 people were present but they also mentioned that people come and go which to me sounds accurate on both accounts. In other words, the Occupy phenomenon which has spread across the globe has also manifested itself in Holland.

The latter is a little bit remarkable since Holland has one of the best social security and healthcare systems in the world, but seeing that austerity measures are being implemented, Dutch banks being bailed out, tremendous financial aid going to Greece, many people know what time it is. The Dutch taxpayer will get the bill just like in any other country. The government already announced that people will feel the new policies in their wallets and nobody thinks they are kidding. The bottom line is that many people realize the political and financial systems have failed to a large degree.

Visiting the event so far I'm also (pleasantly) surprised by the diversity of the protesters. Mainstream media has a tendency to label the protestors as coming from the left side of the political spectrum, which is simply not true. I've heard on more than one occasion right wing speakers who hint towards the meme of small government. People from all walks of life protested. Left, right, Christians, squatters, Anonymous and yes, I've also seen a few people speak who some would label as the lunatic fringe. Nonetheless, the essence here is that everyone is heard and everyone is allowed to speak. Democracy at its finest.

The only people I didn't see so far are the bankers themselves. Some politicians, namely from the Dutch Labour Party and Socialist Party did make an appearance on the 15th. Yes, they are of course from 'the left' and it would suit some right wing politicians to visit the protests as well but I guess they are afraid to get booed. How effective the demonstrations will be is anyone's guess. Personally, I don't anticipate any (radical) change soon but without a doubt it's constructive towards the future to let your voices be heard.

October 15, 2011

Dude, Where's My Car? XI


You know those types, showing off with their brand new Ferrari's . Here's one in Holland who somewhat lost control of all that engine power, drove through a few gardens and parked his expensive car against a house. (No one was hurt except the insurance company.)

October 14, 2011

Quote Of The Month (4)

"The Republicans love the term "job creators" which they have substituted for "the rich" as in "do not raise taxes on the job creators." Republicans, unfortunately, are not the job creators as evidenced by the dismal Bush-Cheney record that created the fewest jobs of any modern administration while losing five million manufacturing jobs. Indeed, more jobs were created under Clinton (23 million) that Reagan, GHW Bush, and Bush, the lesser, combined and at higher tax rates. Republicans are, however, good at transferring wealth to the wealthy with 80% of income growth over the last 20 years of Reagan-era to present "trickle-down economics" going to the top one percent. While the beleaguered working class struggle, the rich are faring quite well with the annual salaries of Fortune 500 CEOs going up to $10.6 million or 400 times the average worker (up from 40 times the average worker in the '70s). By now, even the poorly-educated and/or bigoted should recognize that Republicans have historically NEVER represented the working class."

"Hallaguilla"

October 6, 2011

R.I.P. Steve


Had great fun using your iMac Blueberry G3, eMac G4 and now iMac G5. R.I.P. man.

Signed,
A Mac-head.

October 3, 2011

TZM Call to Action!: Support the "Global Financial Occupation"

TZM GLOBAL RADIO | OCT 5TH 2011, 4PM EDT
Host: Peter Joseph

Guests:
Dennis Trainor, Jr
COALITION TO OCCUPY FREEDOM PLAZA
http://october2011.org/

Brian Phillips
OCCUPY WALL STREET
http://occupywallst.org/

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/zmglobal/2011/10/05/oct-5th-11-host-peter-joseph-tzm-global-radio

Discussing the growing "Financial Occupation; its importance and how TZM can strategically get involved. The Zeitgeist Movement stands in solidarity with these grassroots, non-violence awareness actions for they may represent the beginning of a global move away from the Monetary Paradigm. The Revolution is Now.

OCTOBER2011 COALITION TO OCCUPY FREEDOM PLAZA PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

September 26, 2011
 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:

Kevin Zeese, 301-996-6582
Margaret Flowers, 443-759-4635
Maria Allwine, 443-762-0892
press@october2011.org
 
OCTOBER2011 COALITION TO OCCUPY FREEDOM PLAZA IN WASHINGTON, DC
BEGINNING OCT 6th

DC Occupation Marks the 11th Year of Afghan War, Austerity Budgets and Builds on Arab Spring, European Summer, Madison and Occupation of Wall Street.
The People’s Uprisings seen around the world and in the United States come to Washington, DC’s Freedom Plaza beginning on Thursday, October 6 when thousands will converge to begin a prolonged people's occupation of Freedom Plaza.  The October2011 Movement involves thousands of people and 150 organizations who have already signed. The DC occupation comes at a pivotal time: the beginning of the 11th year of war in Afghanistan and a new federal fiscal year that promises austerity of everything except weapons and war.
The Freedom Plaza occupation occurs as activists in New York are occupying Wall Street and follows major protests across the Midwest against austerity budgets, the environmental protest of the Tar Sands Pipeline where more than 1,200 were arrested and protests throughout the United States on a wide range of issues.
The October2011 Movement demands that the government represent the people, not just the top 1%. The pledge signed on by thousands calls for using our resources on human needs and environmental protection, not for war and exploitation. October2011.org stands with super majorities of Americans on seven key issues:
       •       Tax the rich and corporations
       •       End the wars, bring the troops home, cut military spending
       •       Protect the social safety net, strengthen Social Security and improved Medicare for all
       •       End corporate welfare for oil companies and other big business interests
       •       Transition to a clean energy economy, reverse environmental degradation
       •       Protect worker rights including collective bargaining, create jobs and raise wages
       •       Get money out of politics

Among those signing the pledge and participating in the action are Ann Wright, Baldemar Velasquez, Chris Hedges, Coleen Rowley, Cornel West, Cynthia McKinney, Ray McGovern, Sibel Edmonds and Ted Rall. The Freedom Plaza occupation builds on the experiences of Egypt, Tunisia, Greece and Spain.  October2011 has joined with the Egyptian revolutionary movement in a solidarity statement based on four common principles: seeking real democracy, an end to U.S. interventionist military policy, protection of human rights through the rule of law and developing a sustainable economy that meets human needs. The Indignados of Spain have described our common Road to Dignity that includes the occupation of Wall Street and Freedom Plaza.
More information visit FAQ  on http://october2011.org.  

The occupation of Freedom Plaza is almost here! Momentum is really building and we can’t wait to be with you in Washington, DC. The time is now to create an independent movement built on participatory democracy and to demand an end to war and that our resources are used to meet human and environmental needs.
Occupy Wall Street continues and has sparked occupations all around the country. Some have already started and many others will begin this Saturday. The people of OccupyDC will join us on Thursday. Please support these local occupations. The time is now to unite as the 99% and work in solidarity. You can find out more at OccupyTogether.org.

We know that many of you are on your way to DC. Some are coming on foot, some on bicycle and others by plane, train and caravan. Please document your trip to DC and share your stories, photos and videos with us.

When you arrive in Freedom Plaza, there will be many ways for you to be engaged. You can join a committee and work on one of the 15 core crises. Committees start meeting on Friday afternoon and will present their work in the nightly assemblies. You can share your artistic talents in the Arts area of the Plaza. You can also sign up to teach a class or workshop – share your knowledge and skills so that others understand more about the crises we face, solutions to them and skills needed to create a new world that is peaceful, just and sustainable.

Prior to the action next week there will be training sessions in Washington, DC for skills in nonviolent action, peacekeeping and legal observation. Check the Calendar for more information (click on the topic for details) or check the Daily Schedule. We hope that you will volunteer in some way while in Freedom Plaza!

Many of us have spent time in Liberty Square with the people of Occupy Wall Street. We are impressed by the great sense of community and possibility. We look forward to building a similar participatory, educational, creative and respectful community in Freedom Plaza. One person summed it up by saying the atmosphere is one of less social networking and more socializing!

However, for those of you who can’t make it to Freedom Plaza in Washington, DC, please follow along virtually. We will live stream the nightly assemblies and other events. We will also post articles, photos and videos at October2011.org regularly. And we encourage you to be the media also!

In peace and solidarity!
The October2011 Team

October 2, 2011

Beginning Of The End?


I guess most people have watched the news by now concerning the protests in New York. People are rising up against the system if you will. The wealth inequality and government policies that seemingly only help big business are at the root of this civil discontent. Police clamped down hard on the protesters and earlier this week 80 to 100 where arrested as they centered around Wall Street. Just yesterday 700 people got arrested as they marched over the Brooklyn Bridge towards lower Manhattan. Safe to say the police and authorities are keeping a watchful eye out.

Personally I salute the protesters. It has been clear to me for a while now that America hardly can be called a democracy anymore. The people there basically have a choice between 2 political parties and both cater the big wealthy business interests first and the American people second if at all. The U.S. is a society where money and wealth comes first, the top 10% possess 80% of all financial assets. Given the circumstances, do you really expect people to behave when it is clear their needs are secondary to an elite? Elites that prey off the majority of the people will fall sooner or later.

14 trillion dollars of public debt, 2.3 million people incarcerated, some 40+ million people on food stamps and 1 in 6 beneath the poverty line, how long do you think this game will last? Capitalism itself is at fault here although that is something most people don't want to hear. Likewise, Ron Paul and Austrian Economics are not going to save you. Trying to solve the problems of capitalism with more capitalism is just plain idiotic. The U.S. already gave the free market full reign and the present situation is what you get; the market regulating itself at the expense of everything else.

I fear the worst for America. The system can't perpetuate itself under these conditions. Seeing how law enforcement reacts to public protests yet stays catatonic when financial institutions plunge the country and world into a depression, I predict that this is a sign of things to come. Challenging the establishment is not encouraged. Action versus reaction. When the protests become more intense so will the response of the authorities who will try to protect the current state of affairs. Maintaining order is on the top of their list.

Yet the American spirit is build upon liberty and freedom, as such any violation of that notion is not tolerated. A vicious circle is what comes next with the likelihood of America transforming into a police state. America is on the verge of implosion and to be brutally honest this is a 'logical' consequence of the system that the people have supported for so long. If you let politicians be lobbied (bribed) by corporate interests than they are going to serve those interests. If you let a (partially) private Central Bank issue the currency of a nation than they are going to reward themselves and leave you hanging with the bill.

It's simple. Give the power of the people away to institutions and politicians who think of their own self interest first, the people are going to wind up with the short end of the stick. You've got to find a balance between what's good for you and the nation as a whole. Exclusively pursuing self interest will eventually create a massive imbalance. That is where the American society is at.
Perhaps in 20 years from now people will talk about America in similar fashion as they did regarding the collapse of the Soviet Union. Maybe they will fully realize that an elite deciding what's best for themselves first and what is good for the nation and its people second will always lead to revolution.

October 1, 2011

Self Interest

Goalpost



The killing of Anwar al-Awlaki created quite a stir on news channels and their related talk shows. The muslim extremist was mostly known for his recruiting efforts and may be implicated in previous terrorist plots although personally I haven't seen any conclusive evidence for that claim. Al-Awlaki was definitely engaged in recruiting (young) muslims to fight the jihad against the West. Videos and an entire website attest to that fact. What's so remarkable in this case is that al-Awlaki was born a U.S. citizen.

The latter has legal implications since U.S. citizens normally have this thing called due process. They are charged with a crime, they get a lawyer and have their day in court. The judge presides the case and a jury issues a verdict which can be the death penalty in some states. The thing is, while it is clear al-Awlaki was a recruiter and an extremist it is unclear how much he was involved in plotting attacks because there's no examination of evidence. It is all hidden under nation security.

What's perhaps most fascinating are the different approaches to this case on different news channels. I watched a segment on the Fox News channel and a number of commentators had no legal or moral problem with the killing of al-Awlaki. 'He was a terrorist, he took up arms against his country and therefor forfeits his rights!' Is it really that simple, or are goalposts moved because it is convenient? I always thought that laws weren't subject to great interpretation.

Lets also look at the circumstances. Al-Awlaki was killed using a missile from a drone in a foreign country, Yemen in this case. If I'm not mistaken, firing (high-tech military) weapons in foreign countries could be construed as an act of war. It could have been done with permission of Yemen authorities of course which simplifies matters, but on the other hand I've seen Pakistani officials protest when the same thing happened in their country.

My point is with this case, the legality of this and other lethal action(s) are too easily justified. I understand that the U.S. has a right to protect itself as a nation but laws are laws, and shouldn't be bend because it is convenient. Under the umbrella of 'national security' many things can be justified, that's the dangerous grey area. Today it is a U.S. citizen gone extremist abroad, tomorrow it's a liberal protesting too much against the Federal Reserve. Moving goalposts might be detrimental because it becomes a matter of 'how the shoe fits.' Perhaps something to think about.

September 29, 2011

Summerback


It has been a weird summer. In late spring we had a dry spell over here in Holland and many farmers were complaining, it was even noticeable in a person's garden since plants bloomed a tad later. Then came high summer which was downright miserable here in Western Europe. Two decent sunny days in early July followed by almost 4 weeks of continuous rain - some days not reaching higher than 13C. August wasn't much better. The weather guys already calculated that it was the 6th worse summer on record since they started keeping logs in 1901.

Now the leafs are starting to drop and everyone was expecting the fall with its winds and rain, but this week the summer is back. Temperatures soared to 26 Celsius, beach weather. Which is quite unusual for this time of year. I recall this period, late September / early October in 1995 and it was 4C at high noon and didn't got higher. That's another excess weather-wise but it goes to show you what's also possible. The weather has been so irregular this year that I wont act surprised if we have snow in late October or early November. But right now I'm enjoying the last bit of summer.

Smiling Kitty

September 28, 2011

TZM Response To "Occupy Wall Street"

THE ZEITGEIST MOVEMENT: RESPONSE TO "OCCUPY WALL STREET"

www.occupywallst.org

On Sept 17th 2011, a grassroots expression of contempt was launched in the heart of the world's financial center in lower Manhattan of New York City, also commonly known to the world as the institution of "Wall Street". As of Sept 26th, there have been over 80 arrests and many recorded instances of what appears to be violence and abuse coming from the police and security forces there. However, the protesters remain vigilant in what could very well be a landmark event that will resonate for some time to come.

The Zeitgeist Movement would like to extend its public support to this basic expression.

As the world awakens to a failing financial system with growing civil unrest emerging without the bias of sovereignty, religion or political loyalty, a new, unifying perspective is slowly taking hold which transcends the framework many of us falsely assume as empirical to our way of life.

With the slow grind down of the global workforce as machine automation continues to replace human labor for the benefit of corporate cost efficiency, simultaneously reducing purchasing power and hence inevitably stifling so called “Economic Growth”; with the ever expanding Debt Crisis born out of the Fractional Reserve Lending System and the simple reality that money is created out of debt and sold as a commodity in exchange for Interest - Interest that can only again come onto existence through more loan sales; with the looming military programs growing in virtually all major powers as the financial crisis, coupled with a pending hydrocarbon energy crisis, begins to suggest a stage of global conflict possibly never before seen; along with the market psychology of Infinite Growth Consumption that continues to pervade and distort our values and what it means to live in harmony with nature on a finite planet...

...it might be time we begin to see that the social problems at hand are not specific to any general policy, administration, or even so called "corporate greed". The real problem at hand is actually systematic via the very core foundation of what defines our Economic System and the psychology that is supported and rewarded.

The historical illusion that continues to this day is that someone or some group is explicitly to "blame". Rather than focus on the 400 people who have more wealth than 150 million in America or the fact that globally 1% of the world's population has more wealth than 40%, let's instead ask ourselves how such a manifestation is even possible and, more critically, why we would expect anything less? Think about it.

After all, it's the "Free-Market", isn't it? Contrary to the statistically void efficiency assumptions made by most Market Economists, the Free-Market simply means anyone can do whatever they want and maximize however they want within the confines of legal legislation; legal legislation which, make no mistake, is also for sale in the Free-Market as well; as are political officials, regulatory institutions and whatever social entity you wish to consider.

Nothing but maximizing monetary gain is sacred and anytime a person or group brings some detrimental social or environmental consequence of this system to the forefront, pejorative distinctions are usually branded upon their forehead to stifle such concern and frighten other detractors – such as being called a “Socialist” or “Communist”.

Furthermore, while people in protest today across the world continue to condemn monetary influence in social dealings such as the legal reality of Corporate Lobbying, even using such colorful terms as "Corporatism", “Crony-Capitalism” and even “Fascism”, they seem to misunderstand what this system is and always has been.

The Free-Market model of Economics is a haphazard, unscientific anarchy of organization which assumes that any person or group with enough money and hence power will be “responsible” in their actions both socially and environmentally. The problem is that the very definition of being "financially responsible” actually means to be socially and environmentally exploitative, manipulative and negligent, for the main driver of this system is Inefficiency. The more problems in society in general, the more jobs are created and the more rich the upper 1% become. There is an empirical decoupling from what actually supports life and no alteration of the core configuration of the monetary-market Incentive will likely change that.

On a different level, this system, as an historical evolution, is actually based on a culturally hegemonic pretense. Once economic advantage is obtained, it will likely be kept. This is why everything in the system favors the wealthy by its general structure and inherent logic. While the public might complain about the fact that top Hedge Fund Managers bring in over 300 million dollars per year, they often do not find objection with an Interest system that rewards those with high deposits and essentially taxes those using credit. While you may buy your home with a loan, paying thousands in interest a year, a person of wealth can make a CD Investment and gain free interest income simply because they have the money to spare.

Class separation and perpetuation and the growing wealth divide is not a byproduct. It is inevitable. In the Free-Market, one is actually “free” to take away the liberty of others through the mere economic pressures generated from the game. You are only as free as the size of your wallet. The term “Institution Racism” was coined by civil rights activist Stokely Carmichael in the 1960s referring to how often unnoticed underlying policies and structures within the social system undermined African American prosperity and equality. What we have today is a mere variation: “Institutional Classicism”.

Wall Street itself, which is the ultimate manifestation of the pursuit of money as a commodity rather than any form of true creation or social contribution, is naturally a ripe entity for symbolic objection for, at a minimum, it shouldn't exist at all and most certainly not have the grand effect it does on the stability of the global economy today, regardless of the inherent shortcomings denoted.

However, that stated, it must again be made clear that Wall Street and the Banking System are not the source of our problems. They are only symptoms of an Economic System which will continue to fail by the very gravity of its outdated and false assumptions of human conduct and environmental relationships.

The question then becomes, what do we put in its place? ~Z

About:
The Zeitgeist Movement is a global sustainability activist group working to bring the world together for the common goal of species sustainability before it is too late. It is a social movement, not a political one, with over 1100 chapters across nearly all countries. Divisive notions such as nations, governments, races, political parties, religions, creeds or class are non-operational distinctions in the view of The Movement. Rather, we recognize the world as one system and the human species as a singular unit, sharing a common habitat. Our overarching intent could be summarized as “the application of the scientific method for social concern.”

To learn more about our work, please visit www.thezeitgeistmovement.com

Wakeup Photography

The 2011 Zeitgeist Media Festival

The 2011 Zeitgeist Media Festival, Global:

The Inaugural 2011 Zeitgeist Media Festival Global Event set, which enabled a socially conscience Arts and Media platform across 20 countries, accessing about 10,000 people in person and almost 200,000 through free live Webcasts, was a notable success.

Organized by The Zeitgeist Movement , a global, non-profit sustainability advocacy group seeking to change the current social order, this unprecedented concept has generated a resonance that is expected to grow every year as it continues its development. The integrity of the project seems to rest not only with the social intent, but also with the 1000s of Volunteers who worked to make it happen without any financial gain and even severe losses.

In a post event interview with Peter Joseph, the curator/sponsor of the Main Event at Hollywood's "Music Box", he stated "Yeah, I lost about $35,000 dollars when I expected to lose only $10,000. But it was worth every cent for the dedication and commitment of those who helped execute such a large production was unmatched and just glorious. This is what Community is about and we are only just beginning with our efforts to unify the world."

Coupled with its Global Food Drive Initiative via The Zeitgeist Movement's ongoing "Z-Drive", over 12,000 meals were facilitated through regional Food Banks to feed the ever growing the poor and starving population.

"The Zeitgeist Media Festival is a global, Non-profit, multimedia event working to utilize the Arts as an avenue to create sustainable values in the pursuit of a better world. Recognizing the power of art and media to help change the world, "The Zeitgeist Media Festival" engages the artistic community and their power to changes values. It proposes that needed changes in the structural/economic workings of society can only manifest in tandem with a personal/social transformation of values in each of us. While intellectual knowledge serves its role of showing the path, many in the world follow their feelings- not the knowledge. The Zeitgeist Media Festival hopes to bridge those levels, while also illuminating a focus where changing and improving the world is no longer considered a fringe, suspect or ever dangerous pursuit- but rather the highest and most honorable level of personal/social integrity we have."

Select Links:

Main Website:
http://zeitgeistmediafestival.org/

Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Zeitgeist-Media-Festival/194115850637429

The Los Angeles Beat:
http://thelosangelesbeat.com/2011/08/zeitgeist-media-festival-at-the-music-box/

Examiner Interview:
http://www.examiner.com/local-music-in-los-angeles/peter-joseph-zeitgeist-movement-founder-on-innagural-zeitgeist-media-festival

The Zeitgeist Movement:
www.thezeitgeistmovement.com

September 21, 2011

Highwayman Donner


Something hilarious just transpired in Dutch politics. Earlier this month on the 9th of September the Supreme Court in the Netherlands decided that upon requesting an ID card, which is done at the local town hall normally, no fee can be asked. The essence of the verdict by the court was that an ID card should be free of charge for every citizen and current legislation doesn't justify paying for it, yet it is normal practice that a town generates revenue with issuing passports, documents etc.

The court even decided that people who had paid for a card the last few months should get their money back. Needless to say that many people hurried to the town hall to request a new ID card. City officials got swamped with work.

Enter minister Piet Hein Donner from the Christian Democrat party (CDA). Just a few weeks have passed since this new approach was put in effect, the good Christian minister just forwarded a new bill today basically reinstating the previous arrangement and where people have to pay (generously) for their new ID cards. Just comical how money takes precedence in the political process seeing how fast these highwaymen, I mean politicians, react when it becomes impossible to rob the citizens of their cash.
Tax decreases 'have to be studied' but new tax legislation can be implemented with light speed so it seems. Donner also slaps the Supreme Court in the face by basically countermanding/overruling their decision. When legislation is quickly changed to suit the profit motive, you can ask yourself what democracy really means.

September 20, 2011

Quote Of The Month (3)

"Pure ideology never works. Just as mutt dogs are strongest, mutt politics are the most effective."
- Sean "Muertos" Munger

September 14, 2011

Greek Tragedy


This morning when I read the Dutch internet newspaper 'De Telegraaf' there were many articles dealing with Greece and their economy. For many months the Dutch government has been trying to support that country with loans and recommendations (austerity measures). The general consensus was, as far as the Dutch government was concerned, if we help out Greece (loan money) everything will eventually be fine. Greece just has to get their economy in order, privatize sectors, raise the retirement age, increase taxation etc.

Well, it turns out that all those measures are in vain. Reports have surfaced that several Dutch banks already have plans in effect for when Greece goes bankrupt and are more or less counting on it. Even the ministry of Finance along with the Bank of the Netherlands and (the Bank of) Germany and their politicians are having high-level talks, according to reliable sources. My point is, is that this scenario - the bankruptcy of Greece - was hardly mentioned in previous months as a realistic scenario. Instead, money should be pumped into Greece and they'll be back on their feet in a few years. That was the pretty picture.

House of cards is what comes to mind. If Greece goes bankrupt, and from the looks of it it will, all those measures and all that money loaned to Greece would have been pointless. And when you really think about it, the economy of a nation or the world for that matter, is seemingly highly unpredictable with (austerity) measures sometimes being inadequate. Both politicians and economists can't predict what will happen next and are basically just preachers of money value who hope to inspire trust in the markets.

Economy resembles religion. We should not lose faith in something like money which ironically is created out of thin air. Otherwise stocks would plummet, markets would crash which all have a relative value when you really think about it. The real fear of economists is when people become 'money-atheists,' that's why they keep pumping money in lost causes just to uphold the belief in an economy. Greece isn't the problem, the real tragedy is when the economy fails and people lose faith.

September 11, 2011

10 Years Later


This week it has been 10 years since the attacks on 9/11 where a bunch of monsters flew airplanes into buildings with the aim of killing thousands just for ideological sake. 10 years ago I was working at Sony Music and in the afternoon it became transparent what had happened in New York. A colleague on the work floor mentioned to me in passing that a plane had flown in the World Trade Center. Not long after I had to go to the mens room and saw a group of co-workers huddled together near a radio. I asked what was up and they replied that America was under attack.

I called my mother on the cellphone and she was watching television at home while the whole thing unfolded. 'It's terrible,' she said. Returning to my workplace I recall starting a conversation with a colleague and he was also aware of the situation. I said to him at the time; 'this is the start of a war,' reciting the attack on Pearl Harbor as a similar if not identical situation. My mother called me again and shared the awful news that the towers had collapsed. I knew right then and there that thousands had perished. Upon returning home I immediately put on the television and watched the images most people have engrained in their memories.

10 years later now and this week was full of remembrance. Most tv channels showed documentaries and Hollywood productions made after 9/11 dealing with this subject. One documentary made by 2 French brothers is particularly hair raising since they were on the scene and in the tower just minutes before it collapsed. Remembering that awful day is a good thing. We mustn't forget that if a person becomes too radical and too extreme in their thoughts, violence is just around the corner. And violence begets violence. Lets honor the victims and their families as well as that notion.

September 10, 2011

Profile Of A Zeitroll


Hey Muertos. Finally have some time and energy to make a rebuttal. Yes that excerpt was written by me on the Zeitgeist forums. Think YouTube user "Justintempler" already figured out I use that forum nickname so that was some decent detective work and internal communication. To clarify, I don't put you in the 'for no apparent reason' category.' It's remarkable that you took my comments and started a thread on the Skeptic Project forums because at the time of the writing I was very careful not to name anyone as an example. Yet here you are.

If you want my personal analysis on you and why you oppose Zeitgeist, here it is. And this is strictly my own observation. Let me just break in through the door. The conspiracy theory angle is not the main pillar on which you build your disagreement with the Zeitgeist Movement. I don't contest that you dislike conspiracy theories and in some cases it could be spot on. What brings me to this conclusion is this.

You have no problem creating conspiracy theories when it involves Zeitgeist so you're not opposed to it in the fundamental sense. A comment on the Zeitgeistmovie YouTube channel directed towards "ronaldodelosmuertos" is instantly attributed to Peter Joseph. How do you know it was him? Can you prove it without a doubt? Recently Peter Joseph commented that some critics are on the payroll. I would love to see some further information on that as well, but more importantly did he name you personally? No he didn't. Yet you take that personally and theorize that it's about you. That's a conspiracy theory Muertos! There are more examples of this kind methodology.

Secondly, I've been observing the Skeptic Project forums and you revealed some personal information at times. You commented that your father was/is in the U.S. Air Force. You mentioned that on the 4th of July that you recited the amendments with your family. To me that suggests a strong cultural identity and influence.
To summon up, in my list of reasons why people oppose the Zeitgeist Movement I wouldn't put you in the 'no apparent reason' or 'against conspiracy theories' category. I'm of the opinion that you are an American patriot with strong cultural ties that leads you to oppose influences that interfere with that. There are a few other elements but this is main one. So that's the bottom line as far as I am concerned. Patriotism, not conspiracy theories.

September 9, 2011

Zeitgeist Netherlands @ Eldorica Festival


Last sunday Zeitgeist Netherlands was in attendance at the Eldorica Festival in Haarlem, Holland. The festival itself was themed around durability and how to get to a better, greener world, and it was organized by students which was really impressive since the set up was perfect. In a park a stage was constructed where bands played live music and dj's played there sets. Food and beverages were available. Many kinds of stands hosted by a variety of people and organizations. Art, skills, dance, you name it. Really impressive that a group of young people pulled this off.

Zeitgeist was generously given a stand (for free) along with a television and dvd player. Naturally we played Zeitgeist Addendum and Zeitgeist Moving Forward practically all day. The festival opened at noon and we immediately dressed up our stand with posters and flyers. I spoke personally to some of the people from the organization and to my surprise they were aware of Zeitgeist (to some degree). A few knew about the first movie yet were unaware of the two that have followed. They were given copies...

Another Zeitgeist member had burned around 200 copies of Zeitgeist Moving Forward, while I and another person arranged for 50 copies of Zeitgeist Addendum. At the end of the day I took the remaining copy of Addendum home with me... I'm not sure how many dvd's of Moving Forward were given away but I reckon at least 100. A council member of the city of Haarlem, who helped organize the festival, also took some copies home with him. The Zeitgeist message is getting out there for sure. I had also printed out a few hundred "Zeitgeist bank notes" but the kids seemed to be really fond of them and collected them wherever they were dropped or hung in trees.

Safe to say that the 6 Zeitgeisters, myself included, had a wonderful day at the festival. My compliments to the organization who also gave us drinks and food. We would love to come back next year. At 8:30 in the evening when it was getting dark, we packed up our stuff and the stand was disassembled. I spoke to the Dutch national coordinator of the Zeitgeist Movement and we both agreed; we should do this kind of thing more often...