All Notebook Entries

  • Gary Webb: Do What He Did

    LACANDON JUNGLE, CHIAPAS, MEXICO, DECEMBER 15, 2004: I keep imagining the last moments of Gary’s life. He is looking down the barrel of a gun. His eyes are puffy from the swell of too many tears. The moving van is coming to his house near Sacramento, a place he never wanted to be in the first place, to which he was exiled years ago for the crime of telling a powerful but uncomfortable truth. Everyone he has ever trusted or loved has abandoned him: By that I mean everyone, including you and me. What he is about to do requires the utmost in courage: to pull the trigger and plunge into the unknown, perhaps into nothingness, never to write or report or tell his truth to the post-human mortals who couldn’t handle his truth anyway.

    The hand on the trigger at that moment – his – is not the first, nor is he acting alone. Gary had to wait in line and take a number behind all those who set his suicide in motion years ago. It was a miracle he didn’t do this back when San Jose Mercury News editor Jerry Ceppos, now 58 and vice president of the Knight-Ridder news company, cocked the shotgun and pulled the trigger on the most authentic journalistic career of the late 20th Century. That was the day that the bullet flew out of the cartridge and, as if in very slow motion, took years to reach Gary’s head...

  • Authentic Journalism: The flip side, the torturing thorns of rosy Internet.

    Magnifisyncopathological
    Quot homines tot sententiae

    The opinions of a libertarian anarchist in Austin, TX.
    « The Hypocrisy of Daily Kos | Main | Lynne Stewart's Violent Motives »

    Monthly Archives | Recent Entries
    November 11, 2004
    Franz J. T. Lee is a Flailing Moron

    From South African Apartheid to North American Fascism
    http://www.cmaq.net/fr/node.php?id=18783

  • Elections and Protests

    Elections have a certain similarity in many countries and all over the world; a certain aura of corruption succeeding on the back of public indifference and/or ineffectiveness.
  • Gary Webb, ¡Presente!

    (English translation follows)

    Querido Gary: Esta noche volví a la casa y en cuatro líneas George Sanchez me explicó por qué esta vez no podrás contestar a mi palabras. Simplemente, como decía el poeta salvadoreño Roque Dalton, decidiste pasar a mejor vida... y eso, por supuesto, no nos incluía a mí, a George y a Reed Lindsay, que mucho te debemos y tanto te hemos querido. Está bien, Master Webb, no contestes, solamente lee...

  • Gary Webb - R.I.P.

    Excerpt from an obituary in the Sacramento Bee:

    Gary Webb, a prize-winning investigative journalist whose star-crossed career was capped with a controversial newspaper series linking the CIA to the crack cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles, died Friday of self-inflicted gunshot wounds, officials said.

    Mr. Webb, 49, was found dead in his Carmichael home Friday morning of gunshot wounds to the head, the Sacramento County Coroner's Office said Saturday.

    He left a note, but officials would not disclose its contents.

    "I'm still in a state of shock," said Tom Dresslar, who works as a spokesman for California Attorney General Bill Lockyer and had known Mr. Webb for 15 years.

    "He was a hard-core, no-fear investigative reporter," Dresslar said. "He wasn't afraid to stand up to whatever authority."

  • President Chavez Frias studying Trotsky, Revolution and Emancipation

    As we reported, a while ago, in Moscow, President Hugo Chavez Frias bought Trotsky's famous work "The Permanent Revolution" and is currently eagerly studying its historic application and relevance. Apart from the well-known theory of global permanent revolution of Trotsky ... the establishment of socialism on a world scale, and not the Stalinist version of socialism in one bloc, country or island ... what should interest Venezuela in particular at this moment are Trotsky's views concerning the social relation between "violence" and "emancipation" in the "Third World," in Latin America.
  • Man! Do we ever need grassroots authentic media in order to know the truth!

          The corporate media is burying the news about the possibly-stolen U.S. election. Some folks wrote me after my last posting, the one titled, “Blessed be the killers, Part III: A strategy for removing the Bush administration”, saying in effect that I was wrong, in either or both judgment and strategy. I think the letters I got are indicative of the success of corporate media in shaping people’s consciousness, even those of us who try to be very critical and independent. In this note I share some of the comments and exchanges.
  • let 'em eat bush: an immodest proposal

    yep. the dream of a liberal america is over. i'm waving my white flag high. it's time for the coasts and the cities to focus on taking care of their own. and if the heartland is so in love with republican values, well, let's let them live with them for a while. let 'em live with low minimum wage, no unions, lousy health care...all that shit the coasts and the cities have tried to legislate and even pay for...it's easy to see now why the liberals have been taking such a beating for the past twenty years...
  • Maybe I'm a stubborn bastard, but

    I'm not ready to accept as true that Bush won the election, despite the fact that even many of those who are strongly opposed to his regime seem to have accepted the seemingly unending proclamations in the corporate media that he even garnered a majority of the votes, and not only the electoral college vote.

    In a number of articles, the most recent of which is at http://site.www.umb.edu/faculty/salzman_g/Strate/D iscus/2004-12-06.htm,  I've argued for challenging continuation of the Bush administration, and proposed a strategy for getting rid of it.

  • La Jornada: "Denuncian que se realizan obras en Montes Azules para saquear las riquezas"

    The Mexican government, (and behind them, North American conservation NGOs, most likely) is stating to the world: we had to Kill the Jungle In Order To Save It.

    This is parallel to these same actors trying to steal indigenous pharma knowledge so they can patent it and make billions off of it.

    Read about it here:
    http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2004/dic04/041203/014n1 pol.php

  • OK, So what the hell is going on in Haiti?

    Maybe Reed and Daniel can help us out, but I saw this report while perusing the counterpunch site:
    "We Must  Kill the Bandits!"
    Lula's  Troops in Haiti
    By  BEN TERRALL

    http://counterpunch.org/terrall11172004.html

  • US Election: Electors to be Chosen Before Recount

    On November 22, a Federal district court judge denied a request by Green Party presidential candidate David Cobb and Libertarian candidate Michael Badnarik to expedite the Ohio recount.  The judge said Cobb and Badnarik do not face "irreparable harm" if the recount doesn't take place until after the December 7 date to certify presidential electors, since they will not have any electors anyway.

    The judge did not consider the irreparable harm faced by the world or the nation, and Cobb and Badnarik as citizens, should constitutional democracy be subverted a second presidential election in a row.

  • Medical Marijuana a States' Rights Issue in USA

    The United States Supreme Court will have to either allow the use of marijuana to treat pain or else reverse itself on recent limitations to national government intervention in states' internal decisions, reported The Christian Science Monitor today ("Showdown over medical marijuana" by Warren Richey).
  • Magnetic fake yellow ribbons, credit cards, and U.S. soldiers

    Credit card companies call commanding officers in the United States armed forces to pressure soldiers to pay their interest-inflated debt, National Public Radio reported several days ago.

    In other news, yellow ribbon magnets emblazoned with "Support Our Troops" are more popular than ever on cars, trucks, and low-mileage so-called Sport Utility Vehicles.

  • Stark, dark realities facing Latin America and the World

    Nationally and internationally, studying the latest urgent actions of the Venezuelan government, definitely, life in sheer ad hoc probabilities and mere pro forma possibilities is ending here and now.

    Stark, dark, stormy, Orwellian realities are spreading very fast across Latin America and the world.

    Millions and millions across the globe are already vegetating in sub-human life conditions, generated by corporate, imperialist ultra-exploitation and by bellicose, merciless oppression.

  • Where's Lula? The Decree that Hasn't Come

    According to Brazilian government records, President Lula da Silva's expected presidential decree authorizing decriminalization of drug users, the creation of safe-use rooms for injected drug users, and the change in the name of the lead agency from "National Anti-Drug Secretary" to "National Secretary about Drugs," was not issued on November 24th.

    As reported last week by the daily Folha de Sao Paulo (and translated by Narco News) the various drug policy agencies in Lula's administration had reportedly come to a "consensus" for a policy change that would be signed by Lula this past Wednesday.

    However, the national drug czar, General Paulo Uchoa, did give a media interview on Wednesday in which he said there will be safe-use houses for injected drug users established... but only in an "experimental" manner...

    Let's read the tea leaves of the information that is available today...

  • Cuba/North America Labor Conference Dec. 10

    A message passed on in an e-mail from the International Action Center - Boston:

    On the weekend of December 10, 11 and 12th in Tijuana, Mexico - a conference will give people from North America the opportunity to hear, meet and discuss first hand with Cuban union leaders.

    Also in attendence, the e-mail read, will be union leaders and organizers involved in Venezuela's Bolivarian revolution, including Jacobo Torres de Leon, Coordinator of the Venezuelan Workers' Bolivarian Force (Fuerza Bolivariana de Trabajadores de Venezuela), and a lead organizer of the Million Worker March, Clarence Thomas.

  • VHeadline.com's firewall eliminated 11,468 viruses in the space of one hour

    11,468 computer viruses were eliminated in the space of one hour by VHeadline.com's firewall at around 7:00 p.m. New York time yesterday, November 22 ... the corporate enemy is becoming desperately dangerous ... all this reminds me of a fatally wounded man-eater that launches the barbaric "law of the jungle," that becomes more ferocious as it nears its inexorable demise.
  • La esclavitud de la mente: El control mental en sus dimensiones psicológica y fisiológica

    Friends,

    Enjoy the following lecture of Jutta Schmitt, held a few days ago at the University of The Andes, Mérida, Venezuela, concerning coming dangers for Latin America and Venezuela.
    Saludos,
    Franz<.

    Centro de Estudios de África, Asia y Diásporas Latinoamericanas y Caribeñas

    “José Manuel Briceño Monzillo”

    Congreso Nacional 1854-2004: 150 años de la Abolición de la Esclavitud en Venezuela. ¿Pasado y Presente de una misma Realidad?

    <>Eje Temático: Viejas y nuevas formas de esclavitud que se practican en el mundo de hoy. Los esclavos“ocultos a plena vista” del Siglo XXI.

    Ponencia:        La esclavitud de la mente: El control mental en sus dimensiones psicológica y fisiológica.

    Ponente:          Jutta Schmitt M.A

    _________________ ________

    You can also download this document at the following URL:
    También se puede escarga el documento aquí abajo:
    http://www.franz-lee.org/files/pon_esclavitud.doc

  • American Fascism

     What did the Fascist regimes in Italy, Germany, and Spain have in common?   They consisted of a highly militarized state, backed by corporation and a wealthy elite, that rose to power through a false populism that exploited the public’s fear of foreigners and “moral degenerates.”   This precisely defines the formula that Karl Rove designed to consolidate the Bush administration’s power in the recent election.
  • Workers Unite? 5 years since WTO in Seattle this month.

    Tampa, Florida
    I was covering the release of a report about the local effects of “offshoring”, otherwise known as “outsourcing”, which has become a big topic in the States this election year.  Basically, because its so cheap for large companies to do business in other countries, millions of workers in the United States are either becoming unemployed, or are forced to work for sub-par wages and benefits.  The 2-hour presentation centered on statistics, and came up with some decent solutions for making the US workforce more attractive to corporations---like better education.  The goal of the discussion seemed to be “how can we make it so that companies don’t want to leave our state/country?” But one man in the audience kept asking questions related to labor unions; questions that never really got answered.....
  • When &quot;60 Minutes&quot; Asks for My Contacts...

    I received an email today from a producer of the "60 Minutes" TV news magazine program.

    She wanted my "contacts" in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - a city where I lived in for a good chunk of 2003 - to do a story on "Rio's out of control crime rate and drug problems."

    And, oh, could I also provide her with translators because, she writes, "I cannot speak Portuguese so an English speaker would be great"?

    I will publish the text of her email - and my response, in which I explain why the very premise of her story, and how she plans on doing it, will prevent it from telling the whole truth - below...

    And I will explain to her (and to all) why the days when this project blindly helped Commercial Media correspondents with their projects, except under carefully specified and disclosed circumstances, are now over...

  • Where Democracy Is the Emerging Target

    Al's hasta luego from Big Left Outside reminds us of the "continuing the battle South of the Border where we are moving toward authentic democracy rather than, as in the North, away from it.." The mean little war criminal in the White House's handlers have reeminded him of it too.  Frank Gaffney has outlined a 7-point "checklist." According to Portside, No. 7 is: "Bush must adapt "appropriate strategies for contending with China's increasingly fascistic trade and military policies, [Russian President] Vladimir Putin's accelerating authoritarianism at home and aggressiveness toward the former Soviet republics, the worldwide spread of Islamofascism, and the emergence of a number of aggressively anti-American regimes in Latin America"
  • A Failed Policy? Boston Debates the War on Drugs

    Boston, Massachusetts, USA - "We have a public policy crisis: we are spending billions of dollars to fight a war on drugs and we don't seem to be able to stop the flow of drugs into this country. We are spending more and more public dollars on housing men and women who are involved with the drug trade, drug addiction seems to be increasing, and yet we don't seem to have the money to help those who want to turn their lives around and recover from addiction." With these words, Boston City Councillor Chuck Turner started the public hearing to investigate the war on drugs. He called the hearing "just the beginning of a long dialogue in Boston to see how we can move forward".
  • Brazil's Lula to Sign Drug Decriminalization Decree on Nov. 24

    According to a report in today's Folha de São Paulo (subscription only), the government of Brazilian President Lula da Silva has reached a "consensus" to step forward into a bold new era of drug policy: decriminalizing the drug user, and opening 250 safe drug use centers across the country during the year 2005.

    Lula is expected to sign an executive decree on November 24, taking drug enforcement responsibilities away from police agencies, and placing the problems of drug use under the jurisdiction of the Health Ministry, which will be charged with supporting the safe drug-use centers and make Harm Reduction - a policy to reduce the harms associated with drug use - the law of the land.

    Here is an excerpt from today's report from Brazil's largest daily newspaper:

    Policy proposal considers drug consumption as a public health problem, and no longer one for the police

    The government wants to create centers for drug use

    By Luciana Constantino and Iuri Dantas
    Folha de São Paulo, Brasília Bureau

    After a series of internal disagreements about drug policy, the federal government is preparing a realignment of national policy to define drug consumption as a public health problem, and not one for the police as it is today.

    There will be a presidential order creating rules for treating drug dependents, with emphasis on Harm Reduction...

    (More of the translation appears after the jump.)

  • House of Death is starting to rot

    In April of this year, Narco New brought you a gruesome story about corruption and murder along the Texas border. The story began as follows:

    Between August 2003 and mid-January of 2004, a dozen people were murdered and buried in the yard of a house in Ciudad Juarez, a Mexican border city of 1.2 million people.

    Santillan (an alleged leader in the Vicente Carrillo Fuentes’ Juarez drug organization) and his cronies controlled the house. This group included the informant, known only as "Lalo," who was on the payroll of the U.S. Immigration and Customs (Enforcement) agency....

    ... The informant, “Lalo,” say the law enforcement whistleblowers, even brought the tape and the lime used to help dispose of the bodies. The law enforcement sources believe that he was at the death house during up to nine of the 12 murders known to have taken place there. Most of those killed were allegedly Mexican drug dealers, except for one individual, who was a U.S. citizen – "some kid from Socorro, Texas, just south of El Paso," says one law enforcement source.

    What the Narco News story didn’t mention in its April story was the name of the murdered “kid” from Socorro. He was Luis Padilla. He left behind a wife and three small kids.

  • Boston to Hold Public Hearing Investigating the War on Drugs

    Boston, Massachusetts, USA - Boston City Councillor Chuck Turner is calling for a public hearing this Monday to investigate the War on Drugs.  The purpose of the November 15th hearing is to gather data on the resources devoted to the war on drugs by different city, state, and federal agencies...
  • Fallujah: Fiction meets Reality

    Friends,
    Enjoy Jutta´s Comments.
    Franz.

    Fallujah: Fiction meets Reality

    By Jutta Schmitt

    With one of the first strategic military targets being a hospital so as to avoid pictures of civilians reduced to bits and pieces reaching the world and negatively impacting on Operation "Bomb 'em all into Oblivion," the razing to the ground of Fallujah ... the city of the "die-hard insurgents" and "home to absolute evil" ... has taken its course.

    In a truly asymmetric "war," the American military has been using novel and devastating methods to clear Fallujah’s streets. It has adapted a mine-clearing system, based on a rocket-propelled hose with explosives attached, used for the first time on D-Day on the fortified beaches of Normandy", as we learn from Times Defense editor, Michael Evans.

    Marveling at the wonders of modern technology at the disposal of the American aggressor and the seamless transition from bomb-blasted streets to reality TV, war reporter James Hider describes how "the green video screen in the back of a Bradley fighting vehicle is the ultimate in reality television, and that is how we watched the battle of Fallujah unfold as our 30-tonne steel beast advanced into the district of Jolan, the rebels' bastion, in the small hours of yesterday morning ... on a screen accurate enough to show rats scavenging on the rubbish piles."

  • Fallujah, a bloody fata morgana of many similar genocides to come

    A while ago, during the American elections, we quoted Orwell, warning the peoples of the USA about what Big Brother Bush and his  fascist, military consorts have in mind for them, and for the rest of the world:

        "We shall crush you down to the point, from which there is no coming back. ... Never again will you be capable of ordinary human feeling. Everything will be dead inside you.

        Never again will you be capable of love, or friendship, or joy of living, or laughter, or curiosity, or courage, or integrity. You will be hollow. We shall squeeze you empty, and then we shall fill you with ourselves."

        http://www.vheadline.com/readnews.asp?id=23232

  • Drugs in Colombia

    Readers may be interested in Wired 12.11: The Mystery of the Coca Plant That Wouldn't Die  
     by Contributing editor Joshua Davis (jd@joshuadavis.net)

    The article describes a new coca plant that is now taking over in Columbia. It's herbicide resistant. Heidi-ho.

          Issue 12.11 - November 2004

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