....LMB: "Get Your Read On"....

December 04, 2003

There's a new book out that I'm going to encourage you to all go out and get:

We Are Everywhere: The Irresistible Rise of Global Anticapitalism

The book is shaped roughly like a brick, which probably prompted one of the books' blurbs of praise: "This isn't a book, it's a brick with which to shatter cynicism." No Logo author Naomi Klein says in the foreward, "this is the first book to truly capture and emody the exuberant creativity and radical intellect of the protest movements."

The book does seem intent on being more of a celebration than ink on pages. It's a compilation of essays, personal stories, fiery quotes, informative history, tactical analysis, and inspirational photos. The book itself is sort of an extended collage which tells the tale of what is commonly known as "the anti-globalization movement."

Except that most Westerners get that term wrong. The antiglobalizers aren't just a handful of white American union members, treehuggers and black-clad radicals. Most of the movement is action by people worldwide, facing life or death stakes: peasants fighting water privatization in Bolivia; farmers fighting biopiracy in India; rebel Zapatistas fighting for autonomy in Mexico; the landless poor hijacking farmland in Brazil; AIDS activists fighting pharmaceutical giants in South Africa.

Sadly, much of this international resistance to domination has been hidden since 9-11, if it ever got much coverage in the first place.

This book is about the whole globalization movement, Latin American campesinos, crusty punks from Oregon, environmentalists in Niger, students in Mexico city, pie-throwers in San Francisco, squatters in Ontario, anarchists in Italy, refugees in Australia, factory workers in Poland, landless farmers in Thailand. The list goes on.

As you might imagine, the book is assembled by many authors from many lands, doing many types of work in many different ways.

This books is about the power, the tumult, the joy, the passion, the fury, the humor, the defiance, the courage. It's about finding new ways to resist, new ways to work together, ways of building bridges and sharing power.

I think quite a few of the liberal/progressive folks out there could use a good dose of this book, to remember that politics is not just about unseating George Bush and preventing specific invasions. Don't settle for that.

This is a world gone mad, where the ruthless reign and the lives of millions are snuffed out in blinding flame and in quiet darkness. Freedom is not about a wide selection of DVDs to purchase or faxing a letter to your Congressman. Freedom is life. And for many, its absence is death.

To me, activism and politics is not about battle, or destroying the folks who exploit us. It's about everyone in the world slowly turning their backs on all of the governments, corporations, armies and institutions and saying "we don't need you any more." And when our backs face an evil past, our eyes face nothing but us, and a future we get to write ourselves.

As I've said before:

Naive? Idealistic? Fucking right.

Let's go.

Posted by Jake at 07:50 PM | TrackBack (0)

In a world gone mad, being naive & idealistic keeps you going.

Posted by: Howard at December 7, 2003 11:03 AM

Sounds like a good book! Let me know when it is published and how to get a copy.


Posted by: Robin at December 7, 2003 12:15 PM

Its out! And available in bookstores or you can order it from http://versobooks.com or http://akpress.org

Posted by: Notes from Nowhere at January 6, 2004 10:00 AM
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Lying Media Bastards is both a radio show and website. The show airs Mondays 2-4pm PST on KillRadio.org, and couples excellent music with angry news commentary. And the website, well, you're looking at it.

Both projects focus on our media-marinated world, political lies, corporate tyranny, and the folks fighting the good fight against these monsters.

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Media News

December 01, 2004

Media Mambo

The Great Indecency Hoax- last week, we wrote about how the "massive outcry" to the FCC about a racy Fox TV segment amounted to letters from 20 people. This week, we look at the newest media scandal, the infamous "naked back" commercial. On Monday Night Football, last week, ABC aired an ad for it's popular "Desperate Housewives" TV show, in which one of the actresses from the show attempted to seduce a football player by removing the towel she was wearing to bare her body to him. All the audience saw, however, was her back. No tits, no ass, no crotch, just her back.

No one complained.

The next Wednesday, Rush Limbaugh told his shocked viewers how the woman had appeard in the commercial "buck naked".

Then, the FCC received 50,000 complaints. How many of them actually saw this commercial is anyone's guess.

The article also shows the amazing statistics that although the Right is pretending that the "22% of Americans voted based on 'moral values'" statistic shows the return of the Moral Majority, this is actually a huge drop from the 35% who said that in the 2000 election or the 40% who said that in 1996 (when alleged pervert Bill Clinton was re-elected). This fact is so important I'm going to mention it over in the main news section too.

Brian Williams may surprise America- Tom Brokaw's replacement anchor, Brian Williams, dismissed the impact of blogs by saying that bloggers are "on an equal footing with someone in a bathroom with a modem." Which is really funny, coming out of the mouth of a dude who's idea of journalism is to read words out loud off a teleprompter. Seriously, if parrots were literate, Brian Williams would be reporting live from the line outside the soup kitchen.

In related news, Tom Brokaw has quit NBC Nightly News, and it appears that unlike his predecessor, the new guy can speak without slurring words like a drunk.

PR Meets Psy-Ops in War on Terror- in February of 2002, Donald Rumsfeld announced the creation of the Office of Strategic Influence, a new department that would fight the war on terror through misinformation, especially by lying to journalists. Journalists were so up in arms about this that the Pentagon agreed to scrap the program.

Don't you think that an agency designed to lie to the public might lie about being shut down, too?

This article gives some examples about the US military lying to the press for propaganda and disinformation purposes.

Tavis Smiley leaving NPR in December- African-American talk show host Tavis Smiley is opting to not renew his daily talk show on National Public Radio. He criticized his former employers for failing to: "meaningfully reach out to a broad spectrum of Americans who would benefit from public radio but simply donít know it exists or what it offers ... In the most multicultural, multi-ethnic and multiracial America ever, I believe that NPR can and must do better in the future." He's 100% correct. NPR is white. Polar bear eating a marshmallow at the mayonaise factory white. And the reason it's so white is that it is trying to maintain an affluent listener base (premoniantly older white folks) who will donate money to their stations. This is a great paradox of American public broadcasting, that they have a mandate to express neglected viewpoints and serve marginalized communities, but those folks can't donate money in the amounts that the stations would like to see.

U.S. Muslim Cable TV Channel Aims to Build Bridges- it sounds more positive than it is "Bridges TV" seems to simultaneously be a cable channel pursuing an affluent American Muslim demographic, and a way of building understanding and tolerance among American non-Muslims who might happen to watch the channel's programming. I was hoping it would be aimed more at Muslim's worldwide, but it ain't. Still, I'd be interested in seeing how their news programs cover the issues.

Every Damned Weblog Post Ever- it's funny cuz it's true.

Wikipedia Creators Move Into News- Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia, created collectively by thousands of contributors. It's one of those non-profit, decentralized, collective, public projects that show how good the internet can be. Now, the Wikipedia founders are working on a similar project to create a collaborative news portal, with original content. Honestly, it's quite similar to IndyMedia sites (which reminds me, happy 5th birthday, IndyMedia!). I'll admit, I'm a bit skeptical about the Wikinews project, though. IndyMedia sites work because they're local, focused on certain lefty issues, and they're run by activists invested in their beliefs. I'm not sure what would drive Wikinews or how it would hang together.

CBS, NBC ban church ad inviting gays- the United Church of Christ created a TV ad which touts the church's inclusion, even implying that they accept homosexuals into their congregation. Both CBS and NBC are refusing to air the ad. This is not too surprising, as many Americans are uncomfortable about homosexuality, and because TV networks are utter cowards. But CBS' explanation for the ban was odd:

"Because this commercial touches on the exclusion of gay couples...and the fact that the executive branch has recently proposed a Constitutional amendment to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, this spot is unacceptable for broadcast."

Whoa, what? First of all, the ad does not mention marriage at all. Second, since when do positions opposite of the Executive Branch constitute "unacceptable"? This doesn't sound like "we're not airing this because it's controversial", this sounds like "we're afraid of what the President might say."

Posted by Jake at 10:09 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
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