Posts Tagged ‘Occupy Oakland’
‘You cannot buy the revolution. You cannot make the revolution. You can only be the revolution. It is in your spirit, or it is nowhere.’
Author Ursula K. Le Guin says she is in full sympathy with Occupy Oakland protesters who reportedly safeguarded themselves behind shields made to look like The Dispossessed, her 1974 sci-fi novel about anarchism on an alien world.
* Maryland votes in gay marriage! 42 to go.
* Map of the night: U.S. military and CIA interventions since World War II.
* Two terrible tastes that taste bad together: Rick Santorum and for-profit colleges.
* Republic Windows and Doors has been re-occupied. Elsewhere in Occupied America: Rebecca Solnit rhapsodizes—but maybe also eulogizes—Occupy Oakland, while a group affiliated with Occupy Wall Street will host a national convention in July.
“We feel that following the footsteps of our founding fathers is the right way to go,” an organizer told the AP.
I propose we rethink that.
* The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) has confirmed that scientists have found errors in a physics experiment that recorded particles traveling 60 nanoseconds faster than the speed of light in late 2011. But now, the agency says that one of the errors means the particles could have been traveling faster than that!
* And today’s chilling vision of things to come: “Mutated Trout Raise New Concerns Near Mine Sites.” Enjoy your weekend!
“A riot is the language of the unheard,” said Martin Luther King. And Oakland is a city of the unheard, a city of tremendous institutionalized violence, a city of empty and blighted bank-owned homes, a city that saw riots and mass arrests just a year ago in response to police brutality, all before Occupy has a name or public face.
* When the equitable distribution of Springsteen tickets is put at risk, the New Jersey State Legislature springs into action. More on the BOSS Act at MetaFilter.
* As usual, Aaron Bady is killing it on the Occupy Oakland beat. Another good post on reporting-as-stenography here.
* And Brad Plumer keeps hope alive for a brokered GOP convention…
* There’s really only one label for the pathetic exercise we’ve just witnessed in South Africa: deceit. The whole climate-change negotiation process and the larger political discourse surrounding this horrible problem is a drawn-out and elaborate exercise in lying – to each other, to ourselves, and especially to our children. And the lies are starting to corrupt our civilization from inside out.
* Aaron Bady: The case for making a storm in the ports. I feel certain 90% of the impetus for this piece was the desire to use that pun.
* Oh, UVM. You know better.
* Plutocracy watch: More than 80 percent of giving to Super PACs so far has come from just 58 donors, according to the Center for Responsive Politics analysis of the latest data, which covers the first half of 2011. The Republican groups have raised $17.6 million and the Democratic groups $7.6 million. Those numbers will balloon, with American Crossroads, the main Republican Super PAC, aiming to raise $240 million.)
The exceptions are two public employee labor unions, whose massive donations match those of some of the largest moguls. The rest are individuals with vast fortunes at their disposal.
* Ladies and gentlemen, Andy Serkis: Official plot synopsis for The Hobbit. Rise of the Planet of the Apes director shares his sequel plans.
* Government shutdown, again? Really? Well, I guess it’s been a few weeks…
* We had a fine time at the South End Art Hop in Burlington this afternoon and bought some tiny pieces from Moe O’Hara, John Brickels, and Nicholas Heilig (the last of whom was making this great anti-Christmas print as we passed through his studio). I bought a couple of Heilig’s Live Art prints for my office at school, but alas—the Swedish Chef was all sold out.
* Scenes from the class struggle in Iowa: Mitt Romney offers Rick Perry a $10,000 bet. Now #What10KBuys is trending on Twitter, and the best is all anyone is talking about. I’m closer than I’ve ever been to being the smartest man in politics. I almost can taste it.
* Scenes from the class struggle everywhere: The Walmart Heirs Have The Same Net Worth As The Bottom 30 Percent Of Americans.
* ‘Democrats Gleeful at Prospect of Running Against Gingrich.’ That’s the first bit of Gingrich-related news that’s made me nervous.
* Duke University trustee Bruce Karsh and his wife Martha have donated $50 million to Duke for a permanent endowment to support need-based financial aid for undergraduate students from the United States and other countries, President Richard H. Brodhead announced Monday.
* Henry Aaron: So… here is my prediction. The Supreme Court will sustain the individual mandate, and it will do so not by the narrow 5 to 4 split that has become so familiar, but by a vote of 7 to 2. Or 8 to 1. Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, Sottamayor, and Kagan are virtually certain to find the mandate constitutional. But also voting to sustain it, I believe, will be Justices Scalia and Kennedy, based on reasoning similar to that of Silberman and Sutton. Justices Roberts and Kennedy are in play and I am assuming that either or both will vote to affirm the mandate. Justice Thomas, who has staked out a far-reaching opposition to federal regulation in many currently accepted forms, will say that the mandate exceeds Congress’s constitutional authority.
* Apocalypse tomorrow: In fact, according to the latest science, says Anderson, “a 4 degrees C future is incompatible with an organized global community, is likely to be beyond ‘adaptation’, is devastating to the majority of ecosystems, and has a high probability of not being stable.”
* And today from America’s finest news source: Global Warming May Be Irreversible by 2006.
* But it’s okay that we’ve ruined this planet; after all, there’s always Keppler 22b.
Some of these I first saw at the triumphant return of zunguzungu’s Sunday Reading. You may have also seen his piece “The Grass Is Closed” on the arbitrariness of power this weekend, already linked everywhere.
It’s over 800 billion dollars that we have expended [in Iraq]. I believe that Iraq should pay us back for the money that we spent, and I believe that Iraq should pay the families that lost a loved one several million dollars per life, I think at minimum.
* From last week, but now more than ever: “Italy is now the biggest story in the world.”
* Except for this one: When do we hit the point of no return for climate change?
And, as the IEA found, we’re about five years away from building enough carbon-spewing infrastructure to lock us in and make it extremely difficult — maybe impossible — to avoid 450 ppm. The point of no return comes around 2017.
* Fat primates rejoice! Obese Monkeys Lose Weight on Drug that Attacks Blood Supply of Fat Cells.
* And I saw this the other day, but forgot to post it: Sam Harris on self-defense.
This is the core principle of self-defense: Do whatever you can to avoid a physical confrontation, but the moment avoidance fails, attack explosively for the purposes of escape—not to mete out justice, or to teach a bully a lesson, or to apprehend a criminal. Your goal is to get away with minimum trauma (to you), while harming your attacker in any way that seems necessary to ensure your escape.
Stay safe out there.
* Naomi Klein: Capitalism vs. the climate.
* And ladies and gentlemen, for the last time anywhere: the Western Black Rhino.
* In an anonymous industrial park in Virginia, in an unassuming brick building, the CIA is following tweets — up to 5 million a day. At the agency’s Open Source Center, a team known affectionately as the ‘vengeful librarians’ also pores over Facebook, newspapers, TV news channels, local radio stations, Internet chat rooms — anything overseas that anyone can access and contribute to openly.
* It was linked in the Adam Kotsko post from earlier, but it’s worth promoting on its own merits: Nobody Cares about Property Damage.
In both cases, the liberal position is based around a belief that we can control how we are perceived, and how the state (and its ideological apparatuses like the media) will respond to us. Or actually this could be put more strongly: the criticism reveals the liberal’s desperate need to be in control. The fact that protestors have very limited ability to prevent state crackdowns, and certainly individual protestors can do almost nothing, is scary, and it conflicts with deeply held liberal beliefs about how the state works, and how protesting can change it.
* Occupy Oakland contrarian watch: WSWS.
* The One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project has devised a bizarre plan for deploying its new XO-3 tablet. The organization plans to drop the touchscreen computers from helicopters near remote villages in developing countries. The devices will then be abandoned and left for the villagers to find, distribute, support, and use on their own.
* From Facebook: the fifty states of paranormal horror.
* And the chart of the day: American oligarchy.
* Seven weeks of Occupy, at In Focus.
* Imagine what it’s like to be a normal student nowadays. You did well—even very well—in high school. But you arrive at university with little experience in research and writing and little sense of what your classes have to do with your life plans. You start your first year deep in debt, with more in prospect. You work at Target or a fast-food outlet to pay for your living expenses. You live in a vast, shabby dorm or a huge, flimsy off-campus apartment complex, where your single with bath provides both privacy and isolation. And you see professors from a great distance, in space as well as culture: from the back of a vast dark auditorium, full of your peers checking Facebook on their laptops.
It’s no wonder, in these circumstances, that many students never really internalize the new demands and standards of university work. Instead they drift from course to course, looking for entertainment and easy grades. Nor is it surprising that many aren’t ready when trouble comes. Students drink too much alcohol, smoke too much marijuana, play too many computer games, wreck cars, become pregnant, get overwhelmed trying to help anorexic roommates, and too often lose the modest but vital support previously provided by a parent who has been laid off. Older students—and these days most are older than traditional university age—often have to work full-time and care for children or parents, or both. Those likeliest to encounter these problems are also the ones who haven’t been schooled since birth to find the thread that can lead them through the labyrinths of the bureaucracy. They aren’t confident that they will see an invitingly open door, where a friendly adviser or professor is eager to help them, and they don’t have parents hovering, eager to find that helper for them.
* How could a late entrant still shake up the Republican field? Nate Silver reports. You already know my thoughts on this.
* One-half of Floridians believe the GOP is intentionally sabotaging the economy. Gee, you think? On the one hand, I’m surprised the number is so high; on the other, I’m amazed there’s anyone who can’t see this…
* A Utah man who claimed to be an illegal immigrant from Mexico to avoid going to prison is now wanted by police after he returned to the United States and acknowledged his true identity to a judge.
* If episodes of fission at Fukushima were confirmed, Mr. Koide said, “our entire understanding of nuclear safety would be turned on its head.”
* Two great tastes (okay, one): The Muppets on WWE Raw.
* And the headline reads, “Cash-strapped Chicago mulls easing marijuana law.” Do the right thing for the wrong reasons if you have to, just do it…
Occupy Oakland has shut down the city’s port. Here’s a picture of the protest en route:
* The Occupy Oakland general strike seems to have been really pretty amazingly successful. The view from Twitter. Another. And here’s Matt’s picture again, having gone viral through me by way of @zunguzungu and @rortybomb. Half those pageviews are rightfully mine, Matt!
* Arguments not taken seriously that should be: A federal court is being asked to grant constitutional rights to five killer whales who perform at marine parks — an unprecedented and perhaps quixotic legal action that is nonetheless likely to stoke an ongoing, intense debate at America’s law schools over expansion of animal rights.
* When advertising works too well: the strange case of Axe Body Spray.
* Women hold slightly more than half (52.3 percent) of creative class jobs and their average level of education is almost the same as men. But the pay they receive is anything but equal. Creative class men earn an average of $82,009 versus $48,077 for creative class women. This $33,932 gap is a staggering 70 percent of the average female creative class salary. Even when we control for hours worked and education in a regression analysis, creative class men out-earn creative class women by a sizable $23,700, or 49.2 percent.
* In a victory for the 99 Percent last night, the voters in Boulder, Colorado voted by a three-to-one margin to support Question 2H, which calls for a constitutional amendment to end corporate personhood.
* Jon Corzine’s new firm likely to soon be charged with fraud. My father reminded me today that one universe over Jon Corzine never got in a horrific car accident as a result of his state police driver texting on the highway—which means he’s still the governor of New Jersey, which means he’s cruising towards a run for the presidency in 2016. In this universe he’s probably going to go to jail. It’s hard to think of another public figure whose life has hinged so completely on such a fluke event.
* The worst part of the catastrophic implosion of the Hermain Cain candidacy is that he was the only one with a chance of stopping China from getting the bomb. None of the other candidates are even talking about this issue.
* And J.K. reveals she wanted to kill off Hagrid, too. You fiend!