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Posts tagged 99%

Jan 1 '12

Celebrities: The Court Jesters of Capitalism’s Financial Elites

This article makes a very valid point.
Celebrities are the “Court Jesters” of our Capitalist Plutocracy. The elites created both the infrastructure of celebrity status; and often the the celebrities themselves.

The reason is simple; to keep Americans focused on mindless entertainment rather than to rise up and confront the ‘powers that be’ regarding the issues that affect our daily lives.

First and foremost of these issues: The growing political power of the financial elites that has so corrupted our democracy; that it affects every piece of legislation that comes out of Washington, DC today.

This corruption affects our lives for the worse, in more ways than the average person can imagine. From the inequalities in education between rich and poor; to the lack of Universal Healthcare; to the wars we fight every day in the middle east for oil, to SOPA that will likely be used to limit our ability to organize and communicate via social media; regarding these very issues.

You want proof of how destructive and mind numbing all this celebrity obsession is?

Talk to your friends and neighbors; I am certain that most of them know more about the Kim Kardashian wedding and divorce; than about NDAA which allows the U.S. military to arrest and detain American citizens, on American soil without charges or trial; and to imprison them indefinitely.

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http://theactivists.wordpress.com/2012/01/01/time-to-get-off-the-ride-how-to-reverse-corporate-control-by-reversing-the-way-we-live-our-lives/

Time to Get Off the Ride: How to Reverse Corporate Control by Reversing the Way We Live Our Lives

Posted on January 1, 2012

The ending of the influence of established media does not merely end with the agenda setting in news and current affairs; the media has also helped to create the monstrosity of the “celebrity.” This has seen people withdraw from their communities in the ruthless pursuit of hollow fame, wealth and status in the gossip columns no matter what the cost to their dignity. People must get rid of this culture of tittle-tattle and celebrity gossip as it does nothing more than anaesthetize people into a cycle of mindless consumption rather than paying attention to what is really happening around them. Communities can only empower themselves when they begin to care about each other and not the celebrity creations of our rich, governing elites. Religion is still the opiate of the masses but now people worship at the altar of fame, a status no longer achieved by performing heroic deeds.

Most of all though if communities are to empower themselves by well….acting like communities again. There is no doubt that a sense of community in people has been lost, particularly over the last 30 years. I feel that in where I live here in Manchester everyday, nobody knows, cares and looks out for each other in their own streets. Instead chase money and the smallest whiff of influence and fame which has left us in an era of selfishness, as well as obsessing over the benign daily lives of a group of people they have never met. A way of living which either never really improved our own lot in life or seen us becoming the very elites who have created this era of selfishness.

People can never lose their fear of crushing authority if they do not pull together and cast of their fears of what would happen if the financiers and corporations lost their grip and their friends in the offices of government disappeared. Thereis nothing to fear, not the men in uniforms and any other methods of reprisals the elites use to try and protect their own statuses. You all have much more power to change things than you realise but, sitting at home shouting “hippies!” or “wasters” at people who set up camp in town centres when they decide they have had enough is not how to empower yourselves. You want to empower yourselves? Join them instead.

I remember the great comedian and musician Bill Hicks describing they way we live as “just a ride” and that you can and should get off anytime you want to pursue your own way, but if you want to do that you have to get rid of fear. Bill Hicks couldn’t have been more right and now more than ever, people need to opens their eyes to this. You don’t empower yourselves by staying on the ride.

The Activists Editorial Collective

Dec 31 '11

Christians should boycott this…. Very Disturbing!

Wow! This article has some angry, angry words about Christianity.
Some pretty dark, cynical stuff.

We still believe Organized Religion is a force for good; it promotes love and peace and helps people find the strength to carry on in the face of hardship and adversity. It comforts the weak and the sick; and gives everyone the hope of a glorious future; forever in heaven after they leave this world.
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http://theactivists.wordpress.com/2011/12/30/your-god-is-my-puppet-a-letter-written-by-a-billionaire/

Your God is My Puppet: A Letter Written by a Billionaire

Posted on December 30, 2011

Dear Poor People:

Have you noticed, wage slave, how your God is always telling you to be patients and submissive? Have you noticed how your God is always telling you to bear suffering, to say nothing, to read the Book of Job?

Have you noticed how your God and your prophets are always telling you to turn the other cheek, while the master class destroys your life?

Excuse me, wage slave, but I do not know how to put this mildly, but your so called God is my puppet, your so called priests all work for me. Your God is nothing more than a puppet that the powerful designed to keep you anticipating the afterlife while being raped in this life. Your God profits me and all of those modern Cadillac-driving prophets.

When you see your Evangelist living in a mansion, then you know that your God is a puppet of the rich. When you see your priests telling you to tolerate oppression, then you know that your God is nothing more than a ploy to keep you off my back. When your brilliant clergymen tell you that God wants you to submit to his will power, they’re talking about my will power. When your pastors tell you to not get involved in protests or political subversion, then you know that your God is a puppet of the police state.

God is nothing more than a tool used by the powerful to keep the people down on their knees, at the altar of blind obedience. You obey your God in the same way that you obey your corporate bosses, blindly, willingly, without hesitation. If you do not obey ‘your’ God then you will go to hell, if you do not obey your corporate bosses then you will be fired!

God is a metaphor for distant power, wage slave, God is a metaphor for the destruction of your resistance morale.

Get back in line, wage slave, get back in line to worship the God above, the God who is a metaphor for the powerful living in the mountains.

I keep the clergy nice and fat, to speak in the name of the puppet God. Here’s a metaphor you’ll understand: God is like Barney whom the children adore, but behind Barney there’s a corporation making a killing. Behind your God, there is a group of billionaires squeezing the spiritual profits right out of your very soul.

Long live God! Long live the puppet God of the poor, the one who tells them to obey the laws, to be obedient and happy with nothing.

A Billionaire,

the one who invents your God and keeps him in the sky

Dec 27 '11

Battle plan for avoiding Indoctrination by Mainstream Media (just an outline)

Does anyone have any doubts anymore that the Mainstream media is lying to us every day about the economy? (or about anything else for that matter)

http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/retail/story/2011-12-27/sears-stores-closing/52240208/1

USA Today Headline 12/27/2011 : Sears to close 100 to 120 Kmart, Sears stores


Just last week and even a few days before Christmas, every major TV and cable news program was saying that “Holiday retail sales are higher than last year”; “the economy is getting better as shown by frenzied holiday shopping” etc. etc.

Do yourself a favor: stop watching the mainstream TV news, and get your news from Twitter and Facebook.

The logic is simple: The Mainstream Media is controlled by Large Corporations that have a financial interest in keeping people ignorant of what is really going on.

The spread of News on on Social media like Twitter and Facebook is in the interest of the people:

If a news story is interesting to a lot of people, it gets spread far and wide; if it’s Bullsh#t, it doesn’t go far.

Additionally; it is much more difficult for large corporations and the government to control the spread of information on social media. (although they are trying pretty hard to do so.)

———————————————————

We also got rid of our Cable TV years ago; get Netflix you can rent just about anything today. (we just happen to catch glimses of live TV when we get our oil changed at the auto reapair shop, or when dropping off laundry at the dry cleaners.)

There are also advantages to watching things at a different time than the “masses” do: the timeliness of the message that the corporate entity was trying to impart to you; gets nullified.

Its not only the idea that they (the corporate interests) can make you think a certain way; what gives them the real power; is being able to make you think a certain way; at a certain time, along with everybody else.

Having everyone watching and thinking the same thing at the same time makes everyone easier to control; and harder for any opposition movement to gain momentum.

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Mainstream news is becoming more and more useless everyday; because every day it becomes more and more controlled by big corporations. Its new purpose is to keep the masses entertained and under control; not to inform us or keep us educated about the world we live in.

We the people; as creators of our own News for our online communities; have a responsibility to our community. Our responsibility is to provide accurate, informative news that is free from bias and misinformation.

The only way that we will be able to triumph is if we have accurate information about our world. If you post something, keep it factual; if it is your opinion; that’s fine too; but have the courtesy to label it as such.

Together, we can stay informed!
Power to the People!

Dec 20 '11
America needed an enemy like the USSR (the former Soviet Union 1917 - 1991)This picture of American schoolkids doing the pledge of allegiance is sweet;It’s sentimental; but the ritual of the pledge of allegiance was really just a Cold War, symbolic response to the threat of Communist Ideology competing with our own ideology.Our loss of our great enemy could be a an important, but overlooked reason why America has gone down this path of Corporate greed; and disregard for the common man.During the Cold War; we had to prove to the world that Free Market Capitalism & Democracy was better than “Godless Communism with a Central Planned Economy”.Now that our only ideological opponent is no more (the USSR crashed in 1991) the 1% take that as a mandate that big business and the rich can mistreat the common man; subvert our government with money and impose their will upon us at gunpoint.
This latest NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) is really bad legislation.With this legislation; we are actually worse off than the USSR. They too had the ability to arrest and detain their citizens indefinitely, without charges or trial, and to “disappear” people in the middle of the night. The difference between us and them at this point is: they had unlimited free National Healthcare (probably the best in the world in for many years), free childcare, and there was no such thing as “Homelessness”; as everyone in the USSR was given a place to live by the government; and everyone in the USSR was entitled to free college education if they wanted it.Additionally; people did not “work the system” like the “Welfare Queens” we have in America. In the USSR, if you did not work for 1 year; you went to prison. (unless you couldn’t work for medical reasons)
I’m not saying that these social programs would work in America; but it really puts things in perspective. It seems like the American government is ramming Soviet Style Military Dictatorship down our throats; with none of the“advantages” of Soviet Style Social programs. They have the money to build prisons and the world’s most expensive military to defend their oil interests; which will now be used to “keep us in line” but they wouldn’t spend that same money attacking the problems that are causing the “social unrest” that the NDAA will be used to quell.
It all comes back to this one issue; because this one issue determines whether we have real freedom or not: We need to get the corporate money out of our government.There are many things that contributed to the passage of this NDAA; one was direct corruption of our senate and congress by corporate interests: Defense Industry Contributors for one. Another: Media Industry Corruption of FCC legislation that would prevent single corporations from owning so many media outlets. We the people; did not find out about this NDAA until it was too late to do anything about it; because the large mainstream media did not tell us anything about it. There are so many other direct and indirect ways that Corporate (and Union) money corrupts our government and changes it in ways that do not benefit the people; it would be too numerous to list all the ways it is possible.It does not matter what the issue is: we can not have our freedom until we get corporate money out of government. We need to make a bigger deal about this, we need to forget almost everything else and focus on this one issue.

America needed an enemy like the USSR (the former Soviet Union 1917 - 1991)

This picture of American schoolkids doing the pledge of allegiance is sweet;

It’s sentimental; but the ritual of the pledge of allegiance was really just a Cold War, symbolic response to the threat of Communist Ideology competing with our own ideology.

Our loss of our great enemy could be a an important, but overlooked reason why America has gone down this path of Corporate greed; and disregard for the common man.

During the Cold War; we had to prove to the world that Free Market Capitalism & Democracy was better than “Godless Communism with a Central Planned Economy”.

Now that our only ideological opponent is no more (the USSR crashed in 1991) the 1% take that as a mandate that big business and the rich can mistreat the common man; subvert our government with money and impose their will upon us at gunpoint.

This latest NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) is really bad legislation.

With this legislation; we are actually worse off than the USSR. They too had the ability to arrest and detain their citizens indefinitely, without charges or trial, and to “disappear” people in the middle of the night.

The difference between us and them at this point is: they had unlimited free National Healthcare (probably the best in the world in for many years), free childcare, and there was no such thing as “Homelessness”; as everyone in the USSR was given a place to live by the government; and everyone in the USSR was entitled to free college education if they wanted it.

Additionally; people did not “work the system” like the “Welfare Queens” we have in America. In the USSR, if you did not work for 1 year; you went to prison. (unless you couldn’t work for medical reasons)

I’m not saying that these social programs would work in America; but it really puts things in perspective. It seems like the American government is ramming Soviet Style Military Dictatorship down our throats; with none of the“advantages” of Soviet Style Social programs.

They have the money to build prisons and the world’s most expensive military to defend their oil interests; which will now be used to “keep us in line” but they wouldn’t spend that same money attacking the problems that are causing the “social unrest” that the NDAA will be used to quell.

It all comes back to this one issue; because this one issue determines whether we have real freedom or not: We need to get the corporate money out of our government.

There are many things that contributed to the passage of this NDAA; one was direct corruption of our senate and congress by corporate interests: Defense Industry Contributors for one. Another: Media Industry Corruption of FCC legislation that would prevent single corporations from owning so many media outlets. We the people; did not find out about this NDAA until it was too late to do anything about it; because the large mainstream media did not tell us anything about it.

There are so many other direct and indirect ways that Corporate (and Union) money corrupts our government and changes it in ways that do not benefit the people; it would be too numerous to list all the ways it is possible.

It does not matter what the issue is: we can not have our freedom until we get corporate money out of government. We need to make a bigger deal about this, we need to forget almost everything else and focus on this one issue.

Dec 19 '11

Finally the Occupy movement has a realistic manifesto



Demands or Vision?

Some of us have been having a long-running and low-level discussion at OSJ about demands versus vision. And, it seems that as we move into 2012, we will be reconsidering our mission statement to make sure that it still suits our needs as we move into the new year. At the heart of these discussions are the desire by some at OSJ to have a concrete list of demands or goals that we can clearly communicate to the outside world, and that can bring us together in a common purpose. Others of us reject the idea of demands as too focused, and exclusive of a broad variety of perspectives in our society. We seek a broader vision for OSJ that looks beyond the struggle against the 1%, and towards the longer-term struggle of forging a better future that will have to shape how we fight the 1% if we truly want a better society. I stand with individuals like Victor Conyers, whose call for a social justice vision for OSJ has been published here in the past. But, ours is not the only perspective, so here is a blog post from one of our OSJ supporters describing a Charter for the 99% based on three demands. ~Ana

A Three Line Occupy Manifesto

by theicefish

It is easy for a manifesto to become a laundry list of demands, as there is so much to complain about these days. Each additional item reduces the chance of obtaining consensus. What follows is a try at a “short list” that might work. Fix it, rewrite it, whatever, but a movement without a written agenda will either fade away or be co-opted.

[Much of this is about “getting the money out of politics”, but money is needed to run an election, and to give a way of making the freedom of speech real. (This blog is hosted on a server that costs money.) It is the connection between the money and government decision making that needs to be disconnected. Small anonymous donations can be allowed. The fear of the rich self-funding a campaign is real, but just look at the past elections in California, the wealthy trying to buy their way to the Governorship and a Senate Seat failed miserably. At the end of the day the people get the government they deserve and we will always have to be vigilant.]

Yes, many of us worry about war or peace, the environment, social justice; the list is endless but each additional concern divides us. We need to focus on the keystone problem only, the institutionalized corruption that give the top 1% of earners and large corporations 99% of the voice in our society. If we can fix this we will be able to address the other legitimate concerns that we have. [This manifesto is not meant to be perfect prescription, it is only meant to give the 99% a fighting chance against the 1%, but do not underestimate the power of many voices calling for justice in unison.]

[Let’s keep the list short and focused on the critical few items needed to level the playing field; later we can try to hit the home runs.]

The List:

1. End the institutionalized corruption in government

2. End the political power of corporations

3. Limit the political power of the 1% to 1%

Yes, that’s it. Three little statements. Some details on how it might work follow.

1. End the institutionalized corruption in government

The Freedom of Speech can not be compromised, and lobbying is a form of speech, often serving the public good. [In any case, controls on donations run into court challenges.] The control on lobbyists must come from controls on government officials and employees, not on the lobbyists [to avoid the constitutional issues]. Politicians are government employees and their freedom of association can be limited as a condition of employment. [It is true that not all bribery takes the form of monetary compensation, but if we can stop the money we will have a chance of establishing a level playing field and start to deal with other forms of unethical pressure used to influence government.]

It must be a felony for any elected official, judge or government employee to meet in private with a lobbyist or their agents under any circumstances. Sometimes lobbyists are useful experts, let them explain their points of view in public to all of us instead of in closed rooms with politicians. [This will apply to all lobbyists, not just those in the pay of the 1%]

It must be a felony for any elected official, judge or government employee to fail to fully recuse themselves from any discussions or votes where they, a family member, or a business associate, has an appearance of a conflict of interest, or would benefit financially from the outcome of a decision under consideration. Any giver of gifts or campaign donations to a politician [of more that $100 in a year] will be defined as a business associate for life. Travel, food, cigars, drinks, bundling, facilitating, whatever, all count as donations.

It will be said that these rules would prevent most politicians from continuing in office. That is correct.

2. End the power of corporations

Corporations exist as the result of legislation based on the belief that they provide a benefit to society, and legislation can be used to limit their power and rights. If the Courts don’t understand this then Congress will ban the existence of corporations, or tax them into oblivion. There are other ways to do business without them.

The Bill of Rights does not apply to corporations. They have no freedom of speech, no right to remain silent, nothing. If the Courts don’t like it, then corporations cease to exist.

The executives, directors and major stock holders of corporations, and their beneficiaries, will bear unlimited personal liability for a corporation’s damage to the environment, public health or the economy. The corporation can and must protect its owners and managers from the damages resulting from simple bad business decisions or bad luck, but not from acts of greed, or from situations where they knew or should have known about the risks to others.

“I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial by strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country.” — Thomas Jefferson, 1816

3. End the disproportionate power of the rich

It is supposed to be one person one vote, not one dollar one vote.

All income; salary, interest, dividends, inheritances and short term capital gains, whatever, gets taxed at the same progressive rate necessary to balance the Federal budget now. Long term (>5 Years) investments that create jobs in America might be eligible for a lower rate.

Lawyers, accounts and financial advisors that fail to report attempts to avoid taxes by the rich will be considered their co-conspirators in tax evasion.

There can be no tax deductions of any kind for the rich. Donations are nice, but the 99% should not have to subsidize the public relations campaigns of the 1%.

The pro-rich tax policies have created an unreasonable Federal Debt, a wealth tax will be used to eliminate the debt held by the public [“Wealth” means total assets, as opposed to “income”, which is what was earned in a given year.]

It’s just 3 simple easy to remember points.

Read the full post at Firedoglake

Dec 4 '11
The Occupy movement is more than a bunch of hippies protesting for wealth redistribution. The 1% care nothing for you… To them; you are Cannon Fodder to secure their Oil Interests in the Middle East; This is the only relationship you will ever have the 1% who run this country. Wake Up, you are the 99% too!

The Occupy movement is more than a bunch of hippies protesting for wealth redistribution.
 
The 1% care nothing for you… To them; you are Cannon Fodder to secure their Oil Interests in the Middle East; This is the only relationship you will ever have the 1% who run this country. Wake Up, you are the 99% too!