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NOVEMBER 2011

 

Change the World
"Karl Marx said, 'The task is not just to understand the world but to change it.' A variant to keep in mind is that if you want to change the world you’d better try to understand it. That doesn’t mean listening to a talk or reading a book, though that’s helpful sometimes. You learn from participating. You learn from others. You learn from the people you’re trying to organize. We all have to gain the understanding and the experience to formulate and implement ideas."

From Occupy The Future, adapted from Noam Chomsky’s talk at the Occupy Boston encampment on Dewey Square on Oct. 22.


RECLAIM THE SEASON

Dreading the holiday season? The frantic rush and stress? The to-do lists and sales hype? The spiritless hours trapped in malls? This year, why not gather together your loved ones and decide to do things differently? With the simplest of plans you can create a new rhythm, purpose, and meaning for the holidays. Why not take the spirit of Buy Nothing Day and morph it into Buy Nothing Christmas?

With catastrophic climate change looming, we the rich one billion people on the planet have to consume less! And if that's too extreme for grandma and the kids, try for a Buy Less Christmas. (Or perhaps a Buy Local, Buy Fairer, or Buy Indie Christmas.) Whatever you decide, 'tis the season to reclaim our year-end celebrations and make them our own again. May yours be blessed.

 

TELEVISING THE REVOLUTION

Watch the global revolution as it unfolds, on livestream. You won't find it on the evening news, which merely regurgitates what advertisers decide is fit content rather than global information that might change one's life. If ads are present you watch them; vital information is expertly framed and censored. The best livestream is not network or cable TV's idea of entertainment, which seems to lean toward convincing hapless dupes into acting out humiliating and compromising roles for the profit of the network. Think MTV Reality shows, for example.

The best livestream is the occupy movement which is being televised, updated and brought to you from cities across our great nation and around the world. Viewers are able to see real US citizens stand up for what they believe in and who are willing to risk arrest for expressing it. The livestream offers great ideas for your local Occupy...including this great chant from Cleveland as the police closed in, "One we are United. Two we are the People. Three this occupation is not leaving."

If you prefer the false promise of consumer products that claim to enhance your sex appeal don't watch this. If you seek programs that expand your sense of amnesia--don't waste your time with this livestream. This is what democracy looks like, with all its imperfections.

 

FREE SPEECH FOR ALL

Women bloggers are calling for a stop to 'hateful' trolling by misogynist men.

Anonymous trolls regularly threaten female writers with rape. Crude insults, aggressive threats, and unstinting ridicule—it's business as usual in the world of website news commentary—at least for the women who regularly contribute to the national debate.

The frequency of violent online invective, or "trolling," levelled at female commentators and columnists is causing some of the best known names in journalism to hesitate before publishing their opinions. As a result, women writers across the political spectrum are joining to call for a stop to this cowardly and largely anonymous name-calling.

Read the original article on the Guardian.

 

SHAME ON NPR!

Organizing a protest can can cost you your job. Ask Lisa Simeone, host of the popular "World of Opera." NPR will no longer distribute her program but luckily parent station WDAV, which produces the program out of North Carolina, is keeping Ms. Simeone on as host. WDAV says her involvement in a political protest does not affect her job as a music program host. Here's to hiring people who believe in free speech and know how to use it rather than hiring robots to spout a steady stream of apolitical pap.

No group, corporation, or station is without bias. Corporation for Public Broadcasting (NPR's parent organization) takes corporate money and allows big business to decide what content is programmed. Sadly they pick on a female host, firing her to parade the false idea of their group's impartiality.

As one commenter said,"To make it more accurate, NPR's Ethics Code should state that "NPR journalists are hereby stripped of the rights and privileges guaranteed to all citizens under the Constitution of the United States of America, effective their first day of employment with NPR. This contravention, suspension, and nullification of the Constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of speech, the right to freedom of assembly, and the right to petition one's government for redress of grievances ON THE EMPLOYEE's OWN TIME, will be vigorously enforced at NPR, and addressed with punishment to include immediate termination of employment the name of 'balanced' journalism."

Good luck with that NPR. Just one more good reason to support and work on the streets with Occupy Wall Street.

 

TOGO AD TRIVIALIZES STREET HARASSMENT

Thanks to Wendy Stock who noticed this recent ad for Togos Sandwiches. The ad uses claymation figures to portray an older male sandwich flashing two young women with the contents of his bun. The women's initial horror turns to laughter, purportedly at the small size of the sandwich’s contents. The voice over says, “Don’t settle for puny… try our pulled pork sandwich.” The ad is rife with sexual ennuendo. According to Ms. Stock's article the ad, "trivializes the fear women feel from street harassment, including flashers (exhibitionists). Thirty percent of exhibitionists also commit acts of direct sexual violence against women."


Watch the ad, then let Togo’s know what you think! Visit Togo’s website to make an online comment. You can also call (866) 708-6467. (Wendy Stock, Ph.D.,is a feminist psychologist in independent practice in Berkeley, CA.) 

 

CAST YOUR VOTE

While pundits and reporters have bemoaned the lack of clarity on Occupy Wall Street's to-do list, a media nonprofit has taken a (not-so) radical approach to creating a unified agenda: asking people what matters most in a systematic way. New York City-based Digital Democracy is the organization behind OccupyVotes, a new web platform that lets users prioritize the various demands of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Read the article to explore an open source approach to participatory democracy that allows #OWS to collect and prioritize ideas in an open, efficient, and accountable way. Vote here!

 

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