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Category: Creative Commons

Rebecca Solnit’s ‘Hope In The Dark’ Is An Antidote To Leftist Doom & Gloom

Posted in Creative Commons, and Radical Media

“Things don’t always change for the better, but they change, and we can play a role in that change if we act. Which is where hope comes in, and memory, the collective memory we call history.” — Rebecca Solnit, “Hope In The Dark”

The left has a problem with winning.

We — and while I identify as radical, not leftist, but it’s fair to lump me in with the group for now — are losing bigly, at least from the simplest perspective. A white nationalist regime occupies the White House, while the GOP simultaneously controls most of the country’s legislatures. It’s a dark time, and we’re faced with the prospect of a daily fight just to preserve basic human rights. We need to figure out some way to keep going, despite these losses.…

How To Survive Hurricane Donald (Gonzo Notes 05)

Posted in Austin, Creative Commons, Gonzo Notes, Journalism, and Occupy Wall Street

Resilient communities are more resistant.

Strong communities survive and strong communities resist.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, radical activists and community organizers created Common Ground Relief to step in where the government and traditional NGOs like the Red Cross failed. They organized both the immediate needs of the community, like food and rebuilding, while also enabling long term political organizing. Today, the Common Ground Health Clinic still remains in New Orleans, offering “solidarity not charity.”

Occupy Sandy was a more recent, well known response to disaster. With their skills honed by Occupy Wall Street, activists created an ambitious network of neighborhood relief centers offering supplies of all kinds and connecting people with builders and other volunteers after Hurricane Sandy.…

Protests & Events In Austin For Donald Trump’s Inauguration

Posted in Austin, and Creative Commons

You don’t have to go to Washington, D.C. to resist Donald Trump. Here in Austin, we’ve got a full weekend of protest — and some fun events to round it out.

Heres’s a list of every protest, rally, or inauguration-related event I know of in Austin. You can jump in the comments with links if you know about anything else I’ve missed.

I’m not endorsing any of these events, but I’ll be covering them when I can. Keep an eye on my Twitter for updates and my Facebook for live coverage.…

Don’t Let Unity Erase Your Struggle (Gonzo Notes 04)

Posted in Austin, Creative Commons, Gonzo Notes, and Journalism

A vital part of preparing for the next 4 years is building broad coalitions, but lately I’ve been reminded that coalition building has a dark side too.

This is work we need to do, without a doubt. A coalition can mobilize thousands of people from diverse backgrounds, and illuminate the intersection between our struggles.

The trouble is that with every group you bring to the table, you have to accommodate not just another political agenda but differing tactics for achieving those goals.

Questions quickly arise: How far are you willing to go to resist the government? Will your coalition collaborate with the police and in what ways? Are all organizations committed to nonviolence and, if so, do they have compatible definitions of what nonviolence means?…

Let’s Party Like it’s 1984: The Ministry of Truth in 2017

Posted in Act Out!, Creative Commons, Journalism, and Video

War is peace. Freedom is Slavery. Ignorance is strength. And we’ve always been at war with Russia. So, while you were celebrating the holidays Barack Obama quietly approved a multimillion-dollar anti-propaganda project that feels a lot like the Ministry of Truth from George Orwell’s “1984” — with a more covert and far more boring name. Included as part of this year’s National Defense Appropriations Act, aka NDAA, and inspired by the new “Red Scare,” it’s called the Global Engagement Center and it’s this week’s Fucked Fact.

As you may recall from Orwell’s novel, the Ministry of Truth controlled all the media — from journalism to entertainment, ensuring it all conformed to the government’s agenda. America’s new Global Engagement Center is ALSO designed to control the media narrative — at a time when alternative media outlets and journalists known to question the US Empire are being slammed for acting as Russian spies.

Signed into law on December 23rd, the creation of the Global Engagement Center is part of the “Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act,” originally introduced as a separate bill in March by Republican Senator Rob Portman, and Democrat Chris Murphy. Luckily for Portman and Murphy, their pet bill made it into the NDAA and into law just before Santa came to town.…

How To Break Rules In 2017 (Gonzo Notes 03)

Posted in Creative Commons, Gonzo Notes, and Journalism

Here in Austin, Texas, activists love to hold rallies at the state capitol building.

It’s a magnificent edifice of pink granite and the symbolic center of our state, so I can understand the impulse. Yet the grounds are so massive that all but the biggest crowds become visually lost among the monuments, and for about 18 months out of every 24 the building is empty (“a big pink tourist trap”).

I’m tired of attending protests outside an empty building. The bigger issue is that strongly worded speeches alone won’t solve the immense problems we face. Neither will petitions or angry letters.…

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