Time Magazine Cover, October 15, 2018
Salon via AlterNet, 1/22/17
Do not despair. Do not turn away.
This is a gauntlet, this stretch of days and nights leading to November 6th.
Herstory will wait no longer. She is coming, she is bringing a mighty storm of reckoning, she is bringing a liberation that will shake this nation and the world. Herstory is dawning.
Can you hear Her calling? She is urging us to stand, to shout, to lean forward, to march, to fight, to vote and lead others to stand, shout, lean forward, march, fight and vote. And what is the objective? To smash the Patriarchy (politically, psychologically, spiritually, culturally, economically). To bring down the predators it engenders and protects. The ascendancy of the Feminine in psyche is essential to our next evolutionary leap; arguably, it is our next evolutionary leap.
The confirmation and swearing in of Kavanaugh was an abomination, and it was achieved through subterfuge, cruelty and ruthlessness. There will be a dire political reckoning.
- "The top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee says he will investigate alleged perjury and sexual misconduct by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, and slammed a 'whitewash' probe completed by the FBI earlier this week. The New York Times reported that Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), who will head the Judiciary Committee if Democrats take over the House after November’s elections, said that the legitimacy of the Supreme Court is at stake ..." -- Think Progress, 10/6/18
- Joan Walsh (@joanwalsh): "4 of the 5 justices in the majority were appointed by GOP presidents who lost the popular vote and confirmed by a Senate "majority" that represents a minority of the population. The 5th was accused of sexual harassment. 3 of 4 liberal justices are women. U.S. in a nutshell, y'all" (via Twitter, 10/6/18)
|Wonder Woman, Warner Brothers, 2017
NOTE: The findings released by the Women’s Media Center, which studies female representation in media and culture, show that girls face a confidence gap compared to boys. But seeing women in superhero and other science fiction roles on screen can help girls “believe they can achieve anything they put their mind to.” It also provides them with “impactful sources of inspiration” — more so than when boys see male characters ... The study, entitled Superpowering Girls, was conducted in conjunction with BBC America ... -- Marina Fang, Huffington Post, 10/8/18
The Reality of America
The reality of America is very different than what you have been conditioned to accept, it is essential that you hear this and embrace the truth of it: America is NOT "a house divided," it is not "split down the middle," it has not "descended into tribalism." Indeed, the "red states" aren't even "red." If the "red states" were truly "red" why would the Zombie Cult formerly known as the Republican Party have to resort to increasingly desperate vote suppression measures? Why would they have to pour more and more dark money into "red state" campaigns? Why would they have to gerrymander? They do all of this in the "red states." Why? Because in reality there are far fewer (if any) truly "red" states. In reality, America understands what "the general welfare" means. In reality, America wants to tax the rich and lift up the poor. In reality, America wants universal healthcare. In reality, America wants green energy to fight climate change. In reality, America is tolerant, compassionate and heedful of its higher angels.
- Abrams’ and Kemp’s years-old fight has now hit a crescendo as they fight for the governor’s mansion. “Kemp and Abrams had been plotting their runs for governor for nearly a decade by the time the 2018 elections rolled around. Brian Kemp is the master of voter suppression, disengagement and democracy by subtraction,” said Francys Johnson, the former head of the state NAACP who’s now running for Congress. “The tension is as stark as it could have ever been in this race.” This election, like past ones with Kemp, will be fought out in the courtroom as well as at the ballot box. Kemp is already battling a number of lawsuits. “He has taken advantage of the evisceration of the Voting Rights Act,”Abrams told TPM. “He has used his office to undermine the right to vote for communities of color.” -- Cameron Joseph, Georgia Governor’s Race Is Epic Showdown Over Voting Rights, Talking Points Memo, 10/10/18
And IF you don't vote? Well, remember, Franco and the Fascists didn't have a majority of the Spanish populace behind them. Likewise, Hitler and the Nazis. They seized and held power because they were ruthless and cultish, and the majority forces arrayed against them (i.e., moderates, liberals, leftists, anarchists) were divided against each other.
Beyond Duality and Oneness, In the Granularity of the Here and Now
There are some among us who choose to see themselves above or beyond political struggle. Especially since the Trumpster Fire was lit. They have just wandered off into the Land of Woo Woo. When you speak of RESISTANCE, these escapists will mutter "that which you resist, persists." But those who utter such inanities in our current circumstances do not really understand what Gandhi or Jesus or their authentic adherents were doing anymore than they understand what must be done in our here and now struggle. Such escapists are missing an opportunity to bite into one of the most profound revelations. the The generic spiritual narrative of the last two or three millennia (East and West) is that you must rise beyond duality and embrace oneness. But this construct is so very confused. Yes, indeed you shake yourself free from the somnambulism of the human condition (and its painful illusion of separateness) and yes, yes, you awake into the oneness of all life, BUT BUT BUT IF you stay awake for the NEXT STEP you will cross yet another threshold and ARRIVE in the HERE and NOW, as if for the first time, and you will experience this existence and your incarnation in a PROFOUNDLY NEW WAY, and you will celebrate granularity, uniqueness and fragility, care and yes STRUGGLE. These terms will all take on new meaning. And stepping over that threshold, looking around you, you will realize that the nation and world are in peril, and you will fight, yes, FIGHT. You will choose sides, and fight. You will RESIST. And those who don't stay awake to step through to that next revelation? They will likely just fall back into somnambulism (albeit redecorated) and assert some apolitical nonsense, such as, yes, "that which you resist, persists."
Nancy Spero - Masha Bruskina/Gestapo Victim (1994)
NOTE: "Nancy Spero played an integral role in the feminist art movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s, joining a group called Women Artists in Revolution and developing manifestos and staging protests that demanded inclusion of women in museums and galleries ... This painting is about Masha Bruskina, a volunteer nurse and leader of the Minsk resistance movement, who is a frequent subject of Spero's work. As the text printed of the canvas explains, Bruskina was a seventeen-year-old Communist partisan who, under the guise of a Gentile, helped wounded Soviet prisoners escape. She was eventually arrested by the German authorities; imprisoned and tortured, she never surrendered the names of other members of her group. She was publicly hanged in 1941, and the Nazis meticulously documented her execution ..." -- Jewish Museum (www.jewishmuseum.org)
Introduced as Mr. Spock's pastime in Gene Roddenberry's Star Trek (and subsequently codified in Franz Joseph's Star Trek Star Fleet Technical Manual), the concept of "three-dimensional chess" is now "used colloquially" as Wikipedia notes "to describe complex, dynamic systems with many competing entities and interests, including politics, diplomacy and warfare." Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin, for example, have both been aptly observed to be playing three-dimensional chess.
But the Occult Secrets of rEvolutionary Leadership are not meant for heads of state, they are meant for you, wherever you find yourself in this long march, on the edges, at the rear, in the midst of the throng, whoever you are. To be an effective rEvolutionary leader it is imperative that you start playing three-dimensional chess. What do I mean? You will want to be engaged in the struggle for incremental reform, the liberal way, you will want to be engaged in the struggle for revolutionary change, the way of the left, these ends are not at odds with each other if you are playing three-dimensional chess, they are just the way forward in two different dimensions. You can defend Obamacare and at the same time push for Medicare for All, you can stand with Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at once, you just need to engage in the struggle on more than one dimension. Don't get caught up in the sniping between liberals and leftists, e.g., don't get consumed internal disputes over who should be Speaker or who could be DNC chair, in the context of this crisis these divisions only serve to strengthen the fascists' grip. Don't be a one-dimensional leftist or a one-dimensional liberal. Rise up, expand your psyche and soma, embrace and contain the much bigger truth which embraces both world-views.
The third dimension you must play in is what I call the Straw Dog dimension. In Chapter 5 of the Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu says that the Universe sees the "10,000 things" (i.e., everything) as no more than "straw dogs" (i.e., ceremonial artifacts made for rituals and afterward discarded or burned); he goes on to say that the sage should cultivate the same attitude, "the universe like a bellows, is always emptying, always full." You need this emptiness in your fullness, and this fullness in your emptiness. What Lao-Tzu described in Taoist terms is what Indian yogis call Vairagya. You will typically see this Sanskrit term explained as meaning "indifference" or "non-attachment," but such definitions are so shallow, so misleading. Vairagya is not being unattached or somehow disconnected from life. Vairgya means to be truly present, truly aware and present, truly witnessing while fully engaged. Can you lean forward into the great battle, willingly, knowing that it is quite possible that you will lose and all will fall into ruin? Can you lean forward, playing your part deeply and wholly, as the conflict intensifies, knowing that whatever the outcome you will remain truly present and truly aware and bear witness to it all? This is vairgya. This is the third dimension.
Can you allow all three of these dimensions of engagement to occupy the space of your heart and mind simultaneously? If you can, then you are an evolutionary leader.
|Marvel's Black Pantehr (2018)
NOTE: Black Panther celebrates African aesthetics, language, and cultural traditions with a healthy dose of Afrofuturism, which all combine to set it apart from those previous films. But just as groundbreaking are the film’s female characters, many of whom belong to the Dora Milaje, a team of Wakandan women trained from birth to be some of the best fighters in the world when it comes to martial arts, hand-to-hand combat, and weaponry. They protect the throne, as well as whoever is the Black Panther at that time. Seeing the Dora Milaje working together at the film’s center — and knowing this is only the beginning of their story — has proven a thrill for many viewers. So now’s the time to learn more about these distinguished protectors of T’Challa and the people of Wakanda. Here are five things you need to know about the Dora Milage ... -- Jamie Broadax, Get to Know the Dora Milaje, Black Panther’s Mighty Women Warriors, Vox, 2/21/18
The Resistance arose in the aftermath of the 2016 "election." Your understanding of this Resistance, how you view it, how you relate to it, how you articulate its scope and aims, is of vital importance.
I encourage you to see it in the broadest terms while at the same time allowing for clarity.
I see this Resistance as a great arc, and within that great arc are four rings.
The first ring is that of the progressive movement, embodied (like it or not) by the Democratic Party, and stretching across a spectrum from centrist to liberal to left, those who backed Hillary Clinton, those who backed Bernie Sanders, those who will elect a new Congress this November, and those who will then choose the 2020 presidential candidate, someone new, a woman preferably, and younger than either Clinton or Sanders.
- Georgians voting in the state Democratic primary overwhelmingly backed Stacey Abrams, bringing the 44-year-old former Georgia House minority leader one step closer to becoming the first woman governor of Georgia and the first black woman governor in the US. But this historic win didn’t happen by accident. It was the result of months of effort by an increasingly influential network of political groups and outreach initiatives, many of them helmed by black women, that are eager to build political power and influence in black communities. “Black women are ‘sick and tired’ of being thanked by progressives for being their most loyal voting base. Black women are demanding that the progressive movement show us they respect our leadership and the power of our vote, by investing more in Black women running for office; and Black women-led organizing and institutions,” Melanie Campbell, president and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation and the Black Women’s Roundtable, said in a statement hours before polls closed on Tuesday. Campbell’s group was one of several taking part in an effort called the Unity ’18 Campaign, which aimed to mobilize some 100,000 black women ahead of the Georgia primary. Throughout her campaign, Abrams frequently highlighted the historic nature of her candidacy, and noted that she wanted the party to better help black women, who make up a sizable portion of Georgia’s electorate. -- P.R. Lockhart, Stacey Abrams’s Georgia primary victory is the latest win for black political organizing, Vox, 5/24/18
- Max Boot: "I respect some of my friends trying to work on reforming the Republican Party, but at least for the time being, I think it’s a lost cause. So my hope is that the Republican Party will suffer massive and repeated drubbings at the ballot box. That’s why I urge everybody to vote straight-ticket Democratic even though I have a lot of disagreements with Democrats. I’m not a Democrat; I’m an independent. But for the health of our republic, I think we need to destroy the Republican Party. We need congressional oversight of Donald Trump, which you’re never going to get out of Republicans. I think you need to punish the Republicans for taking these appalling positions, abusing minorities, championing white nationalism, isolationism, protectionism. The only way to wean them from that is to punish them electorally." -- David Corn, “We Need to Destroy the Republican Party”: A Conservative Luminary Calls for a Clean Start, Mother Jones, November-December 2018
- "Suffolk University’s latest poll has reassuring news for those concerned about the rule of law: A majority of Americans (55 percent) trust special counsel Robert Mueller and his investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election, but 59 percent don’t trust President Donald Trump’s denial that his campaign was involved, according to a new Suffolk University/USA TODAY national poll. The survey also shows unfavorable views of President Donald Trump rising 6 points since June. Fifty-eight percent of likely voters said they hold an unfavorable view of the president, compared to 52 percent in June, while his favorable rate has held steady at 40 percent since the early-summer poll. Trump’s job approval numbers tell a similar story, with 56 percent of voters either disapproving or strongly disapproving of his job performance, and 40 percent of voters saying they approve or strongly approve. . . . , with 57 percent saying that corruption in the nation’s capital has gotten worse under the Trump administration. " -- Jennifer Rubin, Voters Don't Buy 'No Collusion',' Washington Post, 8/30/18
- For more than three decades, I observed and analyzed the traits and tactics of corrupt, incompetent and narcissistic foreign officials who did whatever they thought was necessary to retain power. Exploiting the fears and concerns of their citizenry, these demagogues routinely relied on lies, deceit and suppression of political opposition to cast themselves as populist heroes and to mask self-serving priorities. By gaining control of intelligence and security services, stifling the independence of the judiciary and discrediting a free press, these authoritarian rulers followed a time-tested recipe for how to inhibit democracy’s development, retard individual freedoms and liberties, and reserve the spoils of corrupt governance for themselves and their ilk. It never dawned on me that we could face such a development in the United States ... I will continue to speak out loudly and critically until integrity, decency, wisdom — and maybe even some humility — return to the White House. -- John Brennan (Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, March 2013 - January 2017), I Will Speak Out Until Integrity Returns to the White House, Washington Post, 6/1/18
Jim Carrey (@JimCarrey): Squeeze Mueller Squeeze! http://www.vote.gov
The only common agenda that stretches throughout all of these four rings is that A) we are a country of laws not kings, B) it is unacceptable that a foreign power, a geopolitical adversary, should interfere in our electoral process and force its chosen asset upon us through complex, massive and covert means, and C) that the deeply disturbed person currently occupying the Oval Office is dangerously unfit, both morally and psychologically, to be entrusted with such power and responsibility. There is little else upon which all of the factions arrayed within this arc would agree, but this common agenda supersedes all others.
- Chauncey Devega, Salon: "You and your fellow mental health professionals
have continued to issue public warnings about Donald Trump’s danger to
the country and the world. What are some of the specifics?"
Bandy Lee, Yale University: "We recently put out a statement that special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s investigations are likely to provoke Donald Trump into taking extreme and dangerous measures to try to distract the public. The same would apply with the revelations that are coming forth with Robert Woodward’s book or the New York Times op-ed, his diminishing popularity — all these things are going to be additional stresses on an already stressed presidency. His level of lying — it’s already at a pathological level, but the Washington Post noted that his rate of lying has quadrupled. In other words, in the first six months of this year he lied twice as much as he did in the entire preceding year. All those are signs of deterioration: His increasingly angry tweets, his resorting to more and more fantastical versions of reality, his conspiracy theories — the deep state and so forth. These are signs of deterioration and we’re treading dangerously close to something devastating happening. When we make predictions, we’re not saying that something will definitely happen, but when the probability exceeds a certain level of acceptability, then mental health professionals have a duty to warn and to alert the public. That’s why we’ve been speaking up all this time, but the situation has become much more dire. It is unfortunate that we don’t have a political solution at this point. The correct response and treatment would involve containment — and denying Trump access to nuclear weapons." -- Chauncy DeVega, Salon via Raw Story, Yale psychiatrist says Trump is getting worse: ‘I suspect he is unable to tolerate reality,’ 9/21/18
Check your registration if it's not too late. Vote. Vote early if you can. Vote Democratic up and down the ballot. Get your friends to check their registration if it's not too late. Get them to vote. Get them to vote early if they can. Get them to vote Democratic up and down the ballot.
And yes light a candle and say a pray for Robert Mueller and his team.
Birnham Wood has come to Dunsinane Hill. As the witches prophesied.
Putin-Trump is an existential threat to the life of the Republic, and Mueller's Putin-Trump probe (along the other investigations it has spawned) is an existential threat to Trump.
- Peter W. Smith, the GOP operative who raised $100,000 in his search to obtain Hillary Clinton's missing emails from Russian hackers before allegedly killing himself in May 2017, had a well-established business relationship Trump former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn Previous reports indicated Smith knew both Flynn and his son well, but today, The Wall Street Journal explains the backstory behind their connection. The late Peter W. Smith, an Illinois financier with a long history in Republican politics, met with Mr. Flynn in 2015, according to people familiar with the matter. At the time, Mr. Flynn had recently left his job as head of the Defense Intelligence Agency and was trying to set up his own consulting firm, while Mr. Smith was looking at investment opportunities in cybersecurity. -- Smith Met With Flynn in 2015, Committee to Investigate Russia, 10/10/18
- Russia’s preeminent crime boss, a human grizzly bear named Semion Mogilevich, is said to be worth $10 billion, and he was the first Russian to figure out how to launder money on a mass scale. That meant interfacing with the West. Trump Tower, which opened in 1983, was one of the first buildings in New York where shell companies could buy and sell condos without identifying themselves, and it became what Craig Unger of Vanity Fair, in the movie, calls “a money-laundering paradise.” Russian mobsters, such as David Bogatin, began to deal with Trump the year after Trump Tower opened. A little later, the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City was supposed to become Trump’s flagship, but it was a famous debacle that left him in ruins. Apart from its failure as a business, it was charged with violating money-laundering statutes. Trump, famously, was up to his eyeballs in debt, and since he’d filed for bankruptcy half a dozen times, American banks wanted nothing to do with him. All those loans had been his financial Viagra; now they’d dried up. But that’s what made him the perfect mark for the Russians. According to the movie, Trump would never have found his way back had it not been for the flow of cash from the Russian underworld. There are now 30 Trump Towers all over the world, and added together, they contain thousands of condominiums owned by shell companies. According to Unger, a $5 million condo could change hands three or four times a year and — voilà! — you’ve laundered $20 million. That, in essence, is Trump’s business. Not to mention characters like the Russian oligarch Dimitry Rybolovlev, who bought a property from Trump for $95 million, not long after the 2008 real-estate crash, and never pretended to use it. It was a favor — a way of infusing cash into Trump’s pockets. This is all part of the financial scuttlebutt that has followed Trump around for years, but “Active Measures” names the names and fills in the flowchart of Trump’s corruption with gripping authority. Of course, none of this proves that Trump colluded with Russia in any political sense. But coming just days after the conviction of Paul Manafort, it’s edifying, in “Active Measures,” to get a close-up portrait of how Manafort became the lackey of Putin’s Ukrainian puppet president Viktor Yanukovych. He also went to work for Dimitry Firtash, a Ukranian oligarch who was in bed with the Mob (together, Firtish and his criminal connections siphoned off billions of dollars of gas money), as well as a direct associate of Putin’s. -- Owen Gleiberman, Film Review: ‘Active Measures,’ Variety, 8/24/18
-- Richard Power
ACTIVE MEASURES [Theatrical Trailer]
Jim Carrey (@JimCarrey): From the bowels of the White House he shrieked, hurled curses and tweeted bile — because that's what demons do. YOU are the Exorcist. Vote Democrat for goodness' sake. http://www.Vote.gov