Saturday, March 25, 2006

Portrait of the artist as a young gorilla having a big hair day

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Researching the Fundamentalist and Dominionist Right

It used to be assumed that religion would become a weaker force and that zealotry would weaken as western liberal materialism exerted increasing power in the world.

The opposite as we know has proved to be the case and for those who regrard this as an alarming development it is essential to understand what we're dealing with. Fundamentalism and Western materialism are engaged in a destructive symbiosis and spur each other on to ever greater excesses. I'm often asked "where do I start?"

This posting suggests a few resources:


Karen Armstrong's "The Battle for God: Fundamentalism in Judaism, Christianity and Islam " [Amazon US] [Amazon UK] is both well written and meticulously researched. I've provided two links above if you're outside the US/UK or prefer not to deal with Amazon this A9 search might be helpful.

Online Resouces

Yurica report (US) - you sometimes need to take her interpretation of the facts with a bit of salt but she knows her stuff. Her article - "The despoiling of America" is the one to start with.

Theocracy watch Theocracy watch documents "The Rise of the Religious Right in the Republican Party a public information project from" has a lot of documentation. The site is very well organised and I hit it regularly.

Finally there's the indispensable Rightweb

Right Web, a program of the International Relations Center founded in late 2003, explores the many ties that link the main players, organizations, corporate supporters, foundations, educational institutions, and government representatives to each other in what we described as a new architecture of power. Right Web primarily focuses on the influence of this architecture of power on the direction of foreign, military, and homeland security policies. Most of the organizations and individuals profiles are now associated with the Republican Party, but this “architecture of power” crosses party lines as does the Right Web program, which also profiles such right-center organizations as the Democratic Leadership Council and leading liberal hawks.

For an overview of this architecture of power, see:

If you're new to rightweb I suggest you start on their About page

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

In which the gorilla talks dirty

Evil: "In a large sense, may be described as the sum of the opposition, which experience shows to exist in the universe, to the desires and needs of individuals; whence arises, among humans beings at least, the sufferings in which life abounds. Thus evil, from the point of view of human welfare, is what ought not to exist."

If you're offended by strong language you might as well stop reading at this point.

"You know some of them are killers!"

Pat Robertson the man who makes money from gambling scams, who uses taxpayer's money so that his private plane can get child-slave produced blood diamonds onto the market. Who calls openly for the murder of democratically elected foreign heads of state and who together with his puke makingly fat bumbuddy the so-called "Reverend Falwell" (the one wants all the Jews back in Israel so that they can be massacred by the anti-Christ as a prelude to Armageddon ) is at it again. Yes the same little fuckwad who founded Regent's "university" using money from war and slavery so that come the day his minions are trained to rule the earth as yes you guessed it, you can't make this shit up, Regents is at it again.

This time his excuse is a book by the right wing extremist "thinker" David Horowitz called “The Professors: The 101 most dangerous academics in America.”

ROBERTSON: Ladies and gentleman this is a fascinating book. If you want to, you'd better take your blood pressure medicine before you read it, but it's "The Professors: The 101 most dangerous academics in America" and that's just a short murderous little fuck baglist of the 30-40,000 of them, they're like termites that have worked into the woodwork of our academic society and it's appalling. This is available at and book stores everywhere, and you really ought to read it and be informed.

TERRI: It’s interesting that so many conservatives haven't seen this because decades ago we were told that infiltrating education was the way to take over the country, we should have been on alert.

ROBERTSON: They gamed it, these guys are out and out communists, they are radicals, you know some of them killers, and they are propagandists of the first order and they don't want anybody else except them. That's why Regent University for example is so terrifically important and why we're setting up an undergraduate program that hopefully will see shortly 10,000 students, and then from there 250,000 because you don't want your child to be brainwashed by these radicals, you just don't want it to happen. Not only brainwashed but beat up, they beat these people up, cower them into submission. Ahhh! "The Professors", read it.

[source: PFA you can watch the little shitbag here if your stomach can take it [WMP format] or here [QT format]

There comes a point at which being polite doesn't work.

So Pat, - Fuck you, fuck the sow that farrowed you, fuck the bitch you mated with, and fuck your pewling thieving brat. That goes for the hate-ridden quasi human sheep who masturbate their entirely justified inferiority complexes in your "church" and who watch your broadcasts. The broadcasts you paid for with those diamonds. You know Pat the diamonds mined by kids the kids who's homes and lives were wrecked by your pal's machete wielding rapist thugs:

"I was in the northeastern part of the Congo, which is right on Lake Albert. It's the part of the Democratic Republic of Congo that borders Uganda and is extremely rich in mineral resources like diamonds, gold, and cobalt. MSF responded to two major emergencies during my time in the field. In February, thousands of people began to flee the fighting between warring factions. Most of our patients came from the two major camps in Ituri, Tche and Kakwa, where people have sought refuge from the recent outbreak of violence. During the month I spent in Bunia, Tche grew from 2,000 to 10,000 people. And Kakwa expanded to around 7,000 people from 1,000.


What really got to me were the attacks on children. I see plenty of injuries in my work as a surgeon in New York. I deal with gunshot and stab wounds all the time. And I saw machete wounds in Burundi, but the number of children being affected by the violence in Ituri is incredible. My last day in Bunia, I took care of four children: two 15 year olds—one of whom was a girl who had been raped—as well as a six-year-old, and a seven-year-old. When I first saw them with their bandages on I thought they probably had superficial machete wounds, but once I examined them closer I realized that someone had actually attempted to decapitate these kids."

Link to full article below:

Mary Ann Hopkins - New York Surgeon who worked with MSF

My grateful thanks to Helen for the tip-off. For some reason Amazon isn't letting me login so the link for anyone who wants to write a review of Horowitz's latest dung offering is here.


Say hello to valley girl

Valleygirl and I "know" one another via Firedoglake where we both comment. She's started her her own blog ValleyGirlSez drop over and say "hello"

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Voices of America

" After 9/11, many Americans had no idea why there was so much anger and rage in the Middle East, especially against the United States. All their lives, Americans had been taught that foreign policy was for federal “experts” and, thus, they had chosen not to concern themselves with what their federal officials were doing to people abroad. Innocently believing that federal overseas personnel, including the CIA and the military, had been helping foreigners for decades, Americans had no reason to doubt the official U.S. pronouncement immediately after 9/11: “We are innocent. The terrorists hate us for our freedom and values. That’s why they have attacked us.”

What Americans didn’t realize is that federal officials were being disingenuous when they made that pronouncement. U.S. officials knew full well that their decades-old U.S. interventionist policies in the Middle East were at the bottom of the volcanic rage that people bore in that part of the world.

… … …

The solution instead is for the American people to dismantle the U.S. government's overseas empire, requiring the federal government, especially the Pentagon, to withdraw from the Middle East (and the rest of the world) and also to liberate the American people to travel, trade, and interact freely with the people of the world (including both Vietnam and Cuba).

Dismantling the U.S. overseas empire would not, of course, end conflicts abroad but it would ensure that the U.S. government could not make matters worse, both for foreigners and Americans, with its meddling overseas interventions. The federal government’s power would be limited to defending the United States from a foreign invasion, a virtually nonexistent threat at present, and to prosecuting criminal acts committed on American soil."

Why They Hate Us [Emphasis added by me - mfi]

Here's the second voice. I wonder if this man realises the growing fury amongst ordinary decent Americans at the way in which he and his kind have dragged America into the gutter and dragged their fellow countrymen into harm's way. Americans are rightly proud of what their forebears managed to build in America. I wonder if he realises how very nasty ordinary decent people can become when they discover that their trust has been betrayed and their children and livelihoods endangered. Probably not.

"Many Americans simply wish the Arabs would go away; others wish to blow them away -- and wish to blow them away not because they see this step as inevitable and tragic, but because they rejoice at the prospect of getting them back for what they have done to us. Most normal Americans today just dont care any more about the Arabs and their welfare, or about their humiliation, or about their historical grievances, simply because all the images that come to us from their world horrify and appall us, including the disturbing images of Americans doing things that no normal American would ever dream of doing to other people back at home, if only because they would never be given the opportunity.

This is how most normal Americans now feel, but they dare not express it in public. But make no mistake, this feeling will be expressed -- somehow, somewhere: a fact of which our leaders and the world must be made aware before it occurs."
The War of Images

Here's a third voice, not an American this time the similarity between this man and Lee Harris who wrote the article quoted above is chilling and utterly unsurprising. Both Ramzi Ahmed Yousef and Lee Harris are your enemies. Of the two Harris and his kind are far more dangerous. Fortunately you can do something about Harris - treat him and his kind with the contempt they deserve.
"The government in its summations and opening said that I was a terrorist. Yes, I am a terrorist and I am proud of it. And I support terrorism so long as it was against the United States Government and against Israel, because you are more than terrorists; you are the one who invented terrorism and using it every day. You are butchers, liars and hypocrites. (Ramzi Ahmed Yousef)"
The Mind of a Terrorist

You can do something about Ramzi Ahmed Yousef too treat him as what he is a murderer and a criminal, you can demand that American governments stop creating the conditions in which he thrives. And you can leave it to ordinary Muslims to root out and destroy his ilk. They're more outraged by their religion being defiled by murder than you can imagine. Stop the opression and the problems associated with it begin to be solved.

Monday, March 20, 2006

I nGleanntaibh ceoigh - why I say "no"

"i ngleanntaibh ceoigh"

"Within the foggy glens"

Sometimes in all the horror with which we deal we need to remind ourselves of peaceful places, times, and people, lest as Nietzsche warned, when we gaze into the abyss we find it staring right back at us. This somewhat self-indulgent posting is me reminding myself of why I fight.

If you're Irish you come from a country that was invaded and rose in rebellion quite literally once a generation. Ireland was at war more or less permanently for 800 years until eventually the invaders were forced to sign a peace treaty and leave most of the island, hanging on only to a politically and economically unviable rump of their former colony. The Republic from which I come and whose constitution contains the promise that she will cherish all her children equally is a lot less than a 100 years old. Within my lifetime the Republic has gone from a poverty stricken backwater to a vibrant, successful, and open society.

I'm very proud of that.

Within my lifetime, or shortly thereafter, I expect Ireland to be united and that that'll be done peacefully. I have no doubt that there will be atrocities and setbacks - but the momentum of the peace process is such that it is now unstoppable.

I'm very proud of that too, even fifteen years ago saying or writing that would have been inconceivable.

The place in the photo above is an easy bicycle ride and then a short walk from the home in which I grew up. It was the scene of a ferocious and bloody revenge attack upon a patrol of British "irregulars" - the notorious "Black and Tans." The "Tans" were counter terrorists used by what was at the time the most powerful empire the world had ever seen. We had risen in rebellion yet again and in an early version of the "Salvadoran Option" the British empire resorted to terrorism, death squads, collective punishments, murder, torture, and rape to try to get their oldest colony back under their heel.

I'm probably one of the very few people who knows what happened at that place now and I only know about it because I knew some of the elderly men who had fought in our war of independence. Certainly it wasn't known to the family from South London peacefully having a picnic there on the last day of their Irish holiday and who sent me this photo. I saw no reason to enlighten them - those days are long gone.

The leader of the 1916 uprising that started the war of independence - Padhraic Pearse, famously characterised the British empire as "strong and wise and wary" but strong and wise and wary though they were they failed and went down into the dust. Empires built on blood and racism always do fail in the end and their life-spans are getting shorter and shorter. Empires are built on fear and the biggest change of my lifetime is that "brown people" are no longer afraid and longer prepared to let others set their societies' agendas. Long after the current attempt at an American empire is but a bitter and embarassing memory, people like me and you, and them, the people who say "no" will still be here.

On those days when we come close to despair, we need to remember that.


Sunday, March 19, 2006

What is the expression on this child's face?

Standing behind him is one of the armed foreigners who have invaded and are dismembering his country, his prospects, his home. Standing in front of him is one of the armed foreigners who have first invaded and are now dismembering his country, his prospects, his home. Standing behind him is one of the armed foreigners who he has good reason to believe can smash up his home smash up those whom he loves, and smash up or even kill him. Standing in front of him is one of the armed foreigners who he has good reason to believe can smash up his home smash up those whom he loves, and smash up or even kill him.

The expression on this child's face is hate.