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."


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.

A Mac-head.

October 3, 2011

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

Host: Peter Joseph

Dennis Trainor, Jr

Brian Phillips


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.



September 26, 2011

Kevin Zeese, 301-996-6582
Margaret Flowers, 443-759-4635
Maria Allwine, 443-762-0892

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


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.