Friday, December 30, 2005
The Ultimate Drug Dealer
Victor González is a modern day hero. In a country like Mexico one can still benefit the poor and make a success at business at the same time. He has made the price of medicine affordable to near all here. And in a world were everything seems to cost more and more everyday this is like a miracle. This man has gone against the rules proving that one need not be bound by their limitations. If this man can make such a difference, it shows there is hope that others can do the same.
A few excerpts from the article are listed below here. It is important to realize that not all medical and the poor need go the way America is going with it. (Or without it)
González has created an alternative health-care system. His stores stock mostly older drugs that have lost their patent and can be copied cheaply in Mexico. He subsidizes about 1,900 clinics, catering to those who can't afford the US $30 or so that private clinics charge for a visit. Some 800,000 Mexicans visit his clinics every month, according to the Metropolitan Autonomous University. The clinics are run by a nonprofit group set up by González, and doctors keep the money paid for visits.
"Before we appeared on the scene, poor people in Mexico used to pray to the Virgin to get better because they couldn't afford the medicines," says González. "Now they come to us".
González recently opened 11 drugstores and clinics in Argentina and 36 in Central America, where he recruited Guatemalan Nobel peace prize winner Rigoberta Menchu to be a spokeswoman.
The youngest of five children, González worked for years at his family-owned drugstore chain, founded in 1875 by his greatgrandfather. Because he has a speech impediment and admits to abusing alcohol in the past, he says his family never expected him to amount to much.
As sales have grown he opened 1,248 stores last year alone. He erected billboards across Mexico saying multinationals were trying to block access to cheap medicine. "Say no to corruption. Say yes to helping the poor," the billboards read.
González says he's not worried about juggling the demands of a presidential campaign with a fast-growing company. "I'm a businessman in the morning, a politician in the afternoon, and a lover in the evening."
Thursday, December 29, 2005
The Sky Is Falling! - Oh, never mind.
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
What The Hell Is This Doing Here?
What it is doing here is illustrating the depths to which paid whoredom will sink.
It is a Texas, USA road sign right ? Nope, it is in a school text book. Some private nut christian school ? Not christian at all but quite the contrary. It was in a public school text used nationwide. But that's illegal. The function of law is not to control those in power but protect from those who lack it. It was for young impressionable toddlers then. No, wrong again. It is directed to older teens. Well, the US has no business so blatently propagandizing their kids! It wasn't in a US book. What other country would so sell out its youth? One that wants favors, like money, military jets, protection, and a guaranteed escape route for deposed officials. Can't imagine one that would be so patronizingly ass kissing.
It is in a public school text book for 16 year old students of English language classes in America's mid east nuclear ally, the propped up military dictatorship of Pakistan!
Wow, that's bad! Not really. Teachers everywhere and officials they whore for may be stupid, but in general, students are not. One unintended result of schooling is development of instinctive built in bull shit detectors.
Think of all the almost adult Pakistani students who because of this obvious garbage now understand the real role of schools in society. Hell, that graphic will serve to move them to our side as a recruitment poster for revolution to come! We should praise those kids' Allah and thank the puppet dictator Musharraf's US paymasters for the stupidty of their money minded arrogance.
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
U.S. offensives target civilians not fighters"
12/25/05 More than 100,000 Iraqi civilians, including women and children, have died in Iraq since the war was launched in March 2003.
My very stylish American cousin has given me some very stylish clothes for Christmas. She says I need to stay up to date. A military jacket, almost like real. All the ladies are wearing them now she says, not just the men. The military looks is very in she says.
For those of you who want to imitate the military style too, here is a site for you. Got kids? There is even one for your children Right in style, that's most important. And another, in an all time popular store , but you will see this one is sold out, they just can't keep up with the demand.
Why does killer America want to make their womens very clothes represent that which they are, war mongers and worshippers. Have they not enough violence within themselves without an outward display of it even with their fashions and fads? You think these woman, many mothers and wives, would reject that which kills their husbands and children, let alone all the other people all over the world that have died and suffered because of their military. How can they claim to be against war and violence and then approve of it by the way they dress?
You Americans look at yourselves dressed that way, and think of the statement this makes and the message it sends to the world.
Ready to go to war, wherever it may be, all part of being American.
Saturday, December 24, 2005
Friday, December 23, 2005
In a way, it is like the use of "soul" in some black communities. Most white people simply don't get it, nor are they expected to. Similarity is also noted in frequency of "corazón" in lyrics of Mexican music, which may put gringos to thinking there is a national obsession with cardiology. Many times when referring to the "movement", I've been asked, usually in an implied attack mode "What do you mean by that?". The only honest answer to one not a part if it is "You wouldn't understand".
It is fruitless trying to explain the meaning of heart to minds cemented in a heartless society. But there may be a few neighbors among them who are unusually perceptive and have feelings of such disgust with their binding status that they are ready to reach out and seek change to what they are. It is those and only those for which a suitable explanation of the meaning of "heart" might lend guidance.
I am not sure it can be perfectly put in words for it is not a thing of intellect. It would be a difficult if not impossible task for myself. The best attempt I've seen was written by yabasta. She posted it on her La Zatikia blog and it is linked here. Her words are worth reading. Rather, it would be better that they were studied and absorbed by all capable of doing so.
The best I can say to those who cannot is that they are in the wrong place.
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Best For All or Best For Me
I was total gringo during our first extended trip to Mexico. My head was spinning in culture shock wonder of discovering a decent society which contrasted sharply with the USA in which to that point I'd spent my life. That the amazement was pleasant and well accepted was probably because of having battled as an activist the USA's more disgusting aspects during most adult years.
I pulled our trailer off the highway for a glass of fresh pineapple juice as we left the city of Veracruz while journeying back north. The large and busy intersection was undergoing hand construction repairs by many workers. I had worked as a highway engineer for a while as a younger man. That prompted me in unrealized but typical brash gringo arrogance to say to a Mexican at the juice stand "That work would be done in no time if you had the machines we have". I felt shrunk to the size of my juice glass when he responded "If we had the machines you have, we'd have the same problems. Everyone would be out of work. Look around you".
Chinese goods are considered of higher quality here in Mexico and certainly more affordable than those of the US. Prole explained well in the Chat Room contrast between hand production in her China and USA use of machines. Machines cost less than a factory of high paid hand workers. The price of items produced remains high and more of the income flows upward to owners, stock holders, and bosses. Much of their excess income goes to purchase of other non productive ownership, ie stocks of other similar companies. Less flows to workers who would otherwise further distribute to those personally encountered. The overall social effect is that the rich who do nothing become more so and the few workers and those with whom they interact receive in sum a smaller portion of producton income.
Contrast that to China (and other nations) utilizing hand production. Pay per individual is low but there are many workers. So is the overall cost of production and that is reflected in prices. The social impact is more of the income is distributed to a broader portion of the society's people and less to bosses, owners, or stock holders who do nothing in the making of goods. The bottom line is the reverse of that of the USA in terms of who benefits.
Repercussions from movement activity had twice caused me to be out of work with no income in sight. One way or another, two children would be fed. I flirted in frustration with possibility of a pistol point convenient store jackpot. Both times I lucked into jobs on society's underside. Those kept us going and were accepted though they were ones which would be rejected by most concerned with social and legal propriety. Kids' stomachs beat propriety every time.
Coyote's blog post linked here reflects a similar job loss situation. I understand his feelings on a personal level and in empathy wish him the luck that kept a pistol out of my hands. On larger social and political levels however I cannot sympathize with the current dismay of Americans over job loss. We hear "They are sending OUR jobs over seas" with always the unspoken implication of an appended "...to THOSE kind of people". It rings as being other than THOSE kind of people should automatically grant to Americans title to whatever they want?
It is only by looking beyond selfishly drawn borders of situation and birth if there is to be fruit from efforts to increase life's quality and decrease conflict. For us to think and act otherwise is tantamount to promoting continuance of that we claim to oppose.
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Businesses that sustained without using up social and natural capital would be sustainable. The program then showed how clean energy production and the increasing economic advantages of wind power. They also featured a brewery in Colorado that was wind powered and had a very low environmental impact.
Here is an article I found about it.
Part of their theory is very appealing. I see that an economy that depends on producing disposable junk is headed nowhere. Also, I like the idea of mimicking natural processes where there are no waste products. Instead of focusing on labor productivity, the focus is on how completely a natural product can be used up. They also talk about shifting from producing things to where they wear out to where items are produced to last and make the best use of resources.
Somehow, somethings still bothers me about this and I can't put my finger on it. There seems to be something fundamentally missing.
Monday, December 19, 2005
NSA Spying on US Citizens. Why?
A handful of judges on the FISA court have authorized many requests to spy in the name of National Security. They meet in secret, with no published orders, opinions, or public record. Those spied on May never know of the intrusion. Only very few requests to this court have ever been turned down.
Why do Bush and his cronies need resort to executive orders to bypass the FISA court? Is it because they are spying on someone the court would turn down the request for?
Activists? Perhaps they are spying on people that are not tied into terrorism - just people trying to put an end to this war. For example is this why they spy on a bunch of Quakers?
Journalists? Journalists often have contacts with various shady characters so that they can get the insides to a story. These requests may get turned down due to first amendment reasons. Is this why so many of them seem to get offed?
Lawmakers? The request may have nothing to do with terrorism at all. It may just have to do with figuring out the opposition's policies and strategy. Mabe we have another watergate on our hands.
Sunday, December 18, 2005
Saturday, December 17, 2005
US, Mexican border wall must come down, says Mexican President Vicente Fox
President Vicente Fox said walls along the U.S.-Mexico border "must be demolished" because they are "discriminatory" and "against freedom." "No country that is proud of itself should build walls. It doesn't make any sense."
Mexican government speaks out again on border fence:
Friday, December 16, 2005
Even though I don't eat mammals, I wish all of you "Happy Holandaise". Yes .. I hope you enjoy your steaks with some holandaise sause. (In case you mis-heard me say Happy Holidays or something similar)
Thursday, December 15, 2005
America and free speech, they use to go together in the eyes of the world. But look now, America has revealed its true goals to the point were they can no longer falsely send out this image.
"Journalists covering conflict, unrest, corruption, and human rights abuses face a growing risk of incarceration in many countries, where governments seek to disguise their repressive acts as legitimate legal processes,"
looks like they ran out of chinese made flags
A California family is upset because their soldier son's returns to the country not draped in a flag and accompanied by color guard.
(Little do they realize that their son was just cannon fodder for a political get rich scheme.)
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Another perspective on the war in Iraq
I found a website that gives a rather startling perspective on the Iraq war. When the red button comes up, click on it to start the simulation.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Yesterdays discussion at work was all about William's execution. The converstation went on something like this. I said "Yes the guy was a founder of the Crips street gang and yes the courts found him guilty of murdering four people during two armed robberies. But why couldn't he be given life emprisonment?" In response, I was told "The crime was so heinous that we need to make sure they never do it again." What if it was the wrong person? "It's not." "Does his life not have value? Certainly if you believe in pro-life values his life should be just as precious as the life of an unborn child." "Who cares about animals like him? I think they should exterminate them all. We would not have crime anymore. They still shoot horses don't they?"
I really never understood the apparent contradiction between "Pro-Life" and "Pro-Death Penalty" until one of my "red" colleagues at work ''explained'' it to me. By labeling the criminal as an animal, they can separate them from their personhood. The label categorizes criminals as subhuman. The label also is and has been attached to other people such as Native Americans, Germans, Japanese, Koreans, Vietnamese, and now middle easterners. It's pretty clear to me now - they claim to be the uebermensh and the rest are untermensh. And this rationale is used to justify the death penalty, torture, even war.
I have to wonder how soon until this rationale is used to eliminate non-productive drug users, prostitutes, old people, handicapped people, sick people...
Fuck you and your hummer
I found this website (www.FUH2.com) that reflects exactly how I feel about these arrogant people and their stupid looking gas guzzler poser vehicles. Notice the ultimate in arrogance on this one - the support our oops bumper sticker. These turkeys don't even care that they send kids with real hummers without armor to Iraq so that they can drive their monsterous tax deductions here at home.
Monday, December 12, 2005
I visit a lot of blogs and on some leave comments. I did not remember Gothaminage's and went there today to search through its comments. I found none by either myself or our contributors. He asks a common question. Here comes a response that has been pondered and partially repeated often in the Chat Room.
Gothaminage's site seemed in quick scan to have orientation toward what might be considered liberal democratic politics in the USA. There is an immediately noticeable difference between that and ours. We've discovered, often in surprise to new users from the USA, that there are two USA's and surrounding larger world's. One is that dreamed of by most inside USA borders, including those terming themselves "liberal". The other is the realistic one known elsewhere. Gothaminage's site reflects the former, while the nature and locale of Further Left users causes focus on the latter.
The Further Left Chat Room, followed by its Library, and then finally this Forum have been around for close to two and a half years. The count of nation hits reaching one or more of them now stands at 114. It should be no surprise that people have come to them with many differing concepts of the meaning of "left".
Extremes range on the one hand from crawling around jungles with automatic weapons and obliterating anything associated with capitalism or its attendant imperialism to casting a vote for the USA's Democratic Party on the other. Some seem believe definition of leftist hinges on what books are read or political theories ascribed. Others ignore the written word and cast definition on fields of action where doing counts more than saying.
There are those who see flying airplanes into tall buildings as "left" while others consider it eschewing all violence of any form. A lot, especially those from the USA, seem to link "left" to a spectrum spot between what they call "liberal" and "conservative" while having no idea that persons of differing cultures often hold sharply contrasting definitions of those terms or that yet others consider them irrelevant. And then there are the views of "left" held by our detractors. Those are best left unstated.
It is necessary before self characterization to realize what we are and are not. We are words on a publicly available computer screen, neither more nor less. There are no bricks for download here suitable for tossing through a Walmart window. We can talk about organizing people to move a particular direction but within this facility are unable to roam a neighborhood and knock on necessary doors to do so.
We can say we support or oppose this or that set of activities, but would not delineate beyond unverifiable words the form of that support. Even if actuated, a sincere and prudent actvist wouldn't tell of routes to send money or material to certain active forces or brag of contributing to the offing of this or that enemy. There are those who talk and those who do. Those who talk are often by nature not those who do. Those who do are often by necessity not those who talk. Our users probably include some of both stripes.
We've stirred the pot in our couple years of existance and tried to discern a concept rising to the top. Each of the Library, Chat Room, and Forum contains a consensually derived phrasing which can serve as answer to Gothaminage's question. That is:
"...The words "Further Left" are meant to indicate a process rather than position. They imply changing one's stance in order to better contribute to uniting and empowering oppressed peoples so they may strike at causes of their concerns as they see fit."
It is granted that "uniting", "empowering", and "oppressed" are open to personal interpretation. The "as they see fit" seems to bother some, especially those in safety high on the hill who count the wounded in battle below and in arrogance believe they hold answers to what should be done by other people in other situations.
I personally rank most defining the phrases "process rather than a position" and "changing one's stance". That inherits from being old enough to know what we are about was occurring long before we arrived on the scene and will continue long after we are gone. It brings realization the best we can do through this medium is encourage pushing the ball down the field toward yet unseen shifting goals while letting our hearts guide steps along the path.
That was the consensual view of our efforts here. My own personal take as drawn from experience is best described in the Further Left Library piece titled Radical Activism, An Organizing Know How.
May you take it as you wish Gothaminage and in so doing direct your efforts to making more concrete the slogan "Agitate, Antagonize, Educate, and Organize".
Saturday, December 10, 2005
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Definitions, New and Old
1. The act of rendering.
2. An interpretation of a musical score or a dramatic piece.
3. A performance of a musical or dramatic work.
4. A translation, often interpretive.
5. A surrender.
and elaborates the first as:
1. the act or result of rendering a court's judgment
2. legal extradition of a fugitive who has fled to another state
Now we have a new one serving to cover barbarity and soothe nervous fools with word play. According to script writers who arm Condoleezza Rice with American make believe, it is now to be:
"the covert capture in foreign countries and transfer of terrorism suspects without the involvement of a court"
I prefer definition 3 and think of some songs that helped render what pigs of past opposed, going so far as to make it possible for Ms. Rice to serve as America's chief in charge of international whoring.
"Ain't gonna let nobody turn me round, turn me round, turn me round. Ain't gonna let nobody turn me round. Gonna keep on a walkin, keep on a talkin, marchin up to freedom land."
My guitar remembers that one well. Condoleezza might have some relatives who do also.
Just and Fair?
Monday, December 05, 2005
Word of the day: Intransigent
This is a word that Spielberg uses to describe both sides in the Arab-Israeli conflict. "The biggest enemy is not the Palestinians or the Israelis. The biggest enemy in the region is intransigence."
It might also apply to the Al-qaeda / US terror conflict. It sounds a negative word in this context where each side is unwilling to step off of their viewpoint.
However, I am wondering how this word might apply to Senator McCain where he definitely should be intransigent. No comprimises are needed for the torture amendment. Afterall, he has survived torture, Bush and his cronies have not.
Saturday, December 03, 2005
Evil America Beware
America, look at yourself and what you are doing. Your nation is the greatest evil to attempt to take over mankind yet for its own sinister deeds. Masters and Slaves, and nothing in between. It is what your country always wanted and still does.
I challenge those of you who say America is good, to read this article to the end, and if you don’t finish it with an extreme feeling of disgust and an urgent need to put an end to those who create this, you have already become less than human and it is to late for you, your part of it.
Help finish off America, before it finishes off the world.
The prison industry in the United States: big business or a new form of slavery?
BY VICKY PELAEZ (Taken from El Diario-La Prensa, New York
HUMAN rights organizations, as well as political and social ones, are condemning what they are calling a new form of inhumane exploitation in the United States, where they say a prison population of up to 2 million – mostly Black and Hispanic – are working for various industries for a pittance. For the tycoons who have invested in the prison industry, it has been like finding a pot of gold. They don’t have to worry about strikes or paying unemployment insurance, vacations or comp time. All of their workers are full-time, and never arrive late or are absent because of family problems; moreover, if they don’t like the pay of 25 cents an hour and refuse to work, they are locked up in isolation cells.
(This is just the very beginning of this article, it holds important truths that all need to know, so do take the time to read all of it.)
Friday, December 02, 2005
How The Camel Got Its Hump
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Posted By Roastedcoyote
We just finished up an election in my small city. I helped with all the democratic canidates, we won 5 council seats and the treasurer's seat. Only two republicians got elected so it's considered a victory. In my ward a young woman, Bridget Kelly, ran for and won her first election. She is a very progressive democrat and I am excited to have been a part of her efforts.
I've been busy with IBEW union business as a new officer in my local union. I was recently appointed to be a delegate to the Central Labor Council of the Greater Cincinnati AFL-CIO. It seems to me the more I show up to different groups the more involved I get. I'm on the board of directors of my city's democratic party and up for election this month. All of this has transpired since a year ago just after the US presidential election. I got a burr up am butt and decided it was high time to get involved.
I still remain very upset concerning the Iraq War and the current direction of the United States. Most days the news is so sickening it is all one can do not to run into the street and scream. We have indeed been screaming and it's starting to show in some of the voices we have in congress. When oh when will sanity return? It almost like living one of those drunken jags that has lasted for weeks and knowing it has to end soon but not having the power to do anything about it.
Anyway, it's nice to discover your new corner on the internet, I have you bookmarked and will drop in every chance I get.