Promises … promises

I’ve been very neglectful of this blog, particularly now that our fellow LowLives are under siege all across North America.  I make this brief promise to try to do better.  My sort-of motto was to be the voice of the “wretched masses yearning to be free”, at least in the local area.  I seem to have come down with a case of laryngitis … worrying about my own trials and tribulations.  “Double, double, toil and trouble”.  There will be more to come.  What else have I to do?

My baby I m so proud I think I ll name her Jen She - 1784826670518



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Rotting On Remand

Innocent until proven guilty?I have to repeat myself here because I’m absolutely flabbergasted by the concept.  According to Stats Can, there are far more people incarcerated in Canada “on remand” i.e., guilty of nothing, than those who have been committed of accusing a crime.  “On remand” means we hold you in jail until we get around to trying you or releasing you.  It could be traffic tickets or swearing at a cop.  And the “incarceration” is virtually indefinite.  It could be nothing.  The wealthy,of course, get bail.  The rest of us don’t.

I got put in remand for trespassing, being in a shopping centre somewhat shortly after closing hours.  (I was admittedly somewhat protective of my charter rights … gotta stop doing that).  They took me to jail and released me at 4 in the am, while the buses weren’t running and and it was -32 below zero.  They seem to do this for kicks.

Your average John and Jane have no idea this goes on all the time.  It’s time we told them.  P.S. never tell a cop what you think of him.

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I started this years ago, then lost my nerve.  Wasn’t sure I knew enough to tell tell truth.  Thinks have changed … and they keep changing for the worse.

Child in a rebel camp in the north-eastern Cen...

Your Tax $ At Work? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WordPress is less flexible with copyrighted stuff  so here’s look

 “There is no better trade show for defense equipment than a military mission.”

~ Marc Whittingham, CEO of the Canadian Commercial Corporation, the crown corporation that acts as Canada’s global military sales agency.

But just in case demonstrations of Canadian military equipment against the 90% civilian casualties in Afghanistan and Iraq are insufficiently compelling, the publicly funded CCC also rents a trailer with Export Development Canada at the big yearly CANSEC arms dealer trade show, which is where Embassy Mag caught up with its enthusiastically entrepreneurial CEO.

CCC sees ‘untapped market’ for Canadian arms

“You wouldn’t know it from the lack of news coverage, but the Canadian Commercial Corporation has been transformed from a low-profile Canadian intermediary agency to a major player in promoting Canadian global arms sales.”

There will be more as my sources reveal more.  There’s a major arms dealing consortium that Harper’s government is supporting to fake a balanced budget with bribes.  Unless the NDP wins the next election and we can sigh a breathe of relief.

“Too many guns in this damn town.
Baby flak jackets on the merry-go-round …”

Read the rest @: Creekside: CCC : a Crown corporation arms dealer.

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Senior Toronto police officer found guilty of misconduct for ordering mass arrest at the G20 summit in 2010

A police disciplinary hearing ruled that Superintendent Mark Fenton’s “decision to order mass arrests demonstrated a lack of understanding of the right to protest.”

Source: Senior Toronto police officer found guilty of misconduct for ordering mass arrest at the G20 summit in 2010

To tired and lazy to rewrite.  All kudos to Krystalline Kraus from Rabble …. read it! Thanks Krys. The farther it spreads to more important it gets.

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Justice Delayed: Bus Shelter Killers Get Life

Sometimes it takes a high-profile act of violence against a homeless person to bring the problem back into the minds of those who have become so desensitized to seeing people living on the streets every day, the head of a national advocacy group says.

“We want to always keep these issues front and centre, and it`s unfortunate that sometimes it takes such tragedy … to really raise awareness of homelessness,” says Carolann Barr, executive director at Raising the Roof.

“In a country like Canada, that really should be shocking to us.”

Barr’s comments came after two men were sentenced to life in prison last week for killing a homeless man in Nova Scotia, Harley Lawrence, by dousing him in gasoline and setting him on fire.

It was one of a spate of recent incidents that highlighted the plight of the estimated 235,000 homeless in Canadian cities.

On the same day a 29-year-old man pleaded guilty to attempted murder following an attack on Marlene Bird, a homeless woman living in Saskatchewan, who was cut and burned so badly that both her lower legs had to be amputated.

See my previous post on this subject and/or read the rest at

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I broke the windows at the logging company, just to get a little release

These girls from Van have  a courage and a sensitivity I truly admire.  They understand the lowlives  and can only wish them the best in their future careers.

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The First Step To Defeat, Is Believing You Can’t Win

This article originally appeared on Waging Nonviolence  ….

by George Lakey

Labor Movement And An Organized College Walkout Add Support To Occupy Wall Street ProtestIt’s too easy to say that the 1 percent has recently been winning the class war in the United States because it is more powerful, with its control of the mass media, ownership of the major parties and command of the means of repression. In the Global Nonviolent Action Database there are plenty of cases in which the 1 percent has all those things and is nevertheless pushed back by people power and smart strategy. In fact, even in the United States, the 1 percent has lost some recent battles.

We Americans often fail to notice the 1 percent’s strategy game. Knowing some of the moves they make to achieve their goals will assist us as we stand up for justice, equality and life itself.

Divide and Conquer

New York State has had a moratorium on fracking for natural gas in its part of the giant Marcellus Shale deposit. In 2010, oil companies paid for Republican Gov. Tom Corbett’s election in the neighboring state of Pennsylvania; Corbett then made sure to minimize taxes on fracking in his state’s Marcellus Shale.

However, Pennsylvanians’ concern about the negative effects of fracking has grown since 2010, along with the growing concern about underfunded public schools. Politically, there was a natural overlap of the two constituencies — care for health and care for children. Faced with this problem in 2014, major Democratic candidates for governor chose to divide and conquer. They promised to increase tax on the oil companies and use that money for education, thus splitting a potential coalition to gain a moratorium on fracking.

Something similar is happening with Amtrak. A few weeks ago, Congress finally laid the groundwork for the demise of the national passenger train system and the capture of its most profitable routes for the 1 percent. Amtrak is a public good, ever more desperately needed in a country whose carbon emissions are out of control. Passenger rail is, of course, heavily subsidized by taxes, the most sensible way to provide many public goods.

To simplify a complicated story, the 1 percent’s previous attempt to destroy Amtrak failed because the rail system was defended by a broad coalition of senators, including those from Midwestern and Western states that needed Amtrak even though their states’ small populations meant very heavy subsidies.

Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor — which covers Boston to Washington, D.C. — generates surplus income because of high passenger loads. Having analyzed the 1 percent’s earlier loss, the new strategy is apparently to divide the Senate pro-Amtrak coalition by promising the Northeast Corridor the chance to keep more of its surplus for itself. That will lessen the money available for the Western states. Service outside the Northeast Corridor will decline while infrastructure improvements in the Northeast will be pumped up. The result: a split in the coalition that kept Amtrak alive.

As the coalition falls apart, most of Amtrak can be dumped and the valuable Northeast Corridor can be saved for re-privatization. Clever.

Running Down Public Services

The 1 percent’s wish to turn school taxes into private profit has been apparent for quite a while. It could only be done around the edges as long as people were basically satisfied with the public school system. The 1 percent’s school voucher campaign failed despite the appeal to the fundamental American value of freedom of choice.

The 1 percent increased its strategy of de-funding pubic schools and supported a “school reform movement” that attacked public school teachers and used testing as a stick. The project was branded as Leave No Child Behind. The combination was effective for running schools down. For example, studies show that one of the better predictors of educational achievement is class size — the smaller, the better — so the defunding strategy forced the increase of class size, then attacked the teachers for underperforming. Soon, teachers were paying for pencils and supplies for the students; many teachers proved to be heroes, but the system as a whole was predictably stressed out.

Enter: charter schools. Nationally, we now have enough research on charter schools to know that, on the whole, they are no improvement. A recent Stanford study joins others that show no conclusive evidence that charters are better. But charters don’t need to be better, because the defunding-plus-blaming strategy is working among desperate working class parents who want to flee run-down public schools in the hope that charters are better. That’s great if you don’t care about working and middle class education, and believe the unions won’t go on the offensive and rally the community against your strategy.

Ignore People Power

For the first half of Earth Quaker Action Team’s successful five-year campaign to end PNC Bank’s support of mountaintop removal coal mining, bank officials ignored us. Journalists told us they were frustrated that when they covered our story they received only “No comment” from PNC’s public relations officers in Pittsburgh.

In Colorado, a new right-wing campaign seeks to expunge from the schools any history or description of civil disobedience and radical dissent. Presumably Thoreau, the Underground Railroad and Martin Luther King are to be shown the school exit.

Actually, as “A People’s History” author Howard Zinn and the Global Nonviolent Action Database have shown, the 1 percent’s influence in academe already screened out most of the people’s heritage of their own nonviolent campaigns, hiding them from college students who, frighteningly enough, might put that legacy to use. At Swarthmore College, most of the students who worked on the database, arguably among the best-educated in the country, told me that Swarthmore taught them the concept for the first time in their educational experience. Mainstream academics slather their students with military history, strategy, and view of the world; that is a study consistent with the values of the Masters of the Universe.

The recent furor over the movie Selma’s portrayal of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s role in the voting rights act was itself instructive: a phalanx of Democrats resisted the view that the people were primarily responsible for that victory. Years ago Hilary Clinton said publicly that it was President Johnson who was the prime mover. This is consistent with the 1 percent-financed Democrats, who interact with social movements to co-opt them and wean them away from the strength of self-reliant nonviolent power.

Judging from the 1 percent’s strategy of ignoring, discouraging, and disparaging nonviolent action, the elite apparently respects nonviolent power more than some activists on the left.


Naomi Klein is Right

In her book “This Changes Everything” Klein argues that the climate crisis presents a tremendous opportunity for the people who have been on the losing side of the class war. I agree. Even when the 1 percent in the United States was at the height of its power, George W. Bush was blocked when he tried to give Social Security to Wall Street, and his over-extension of U.S. military power in Iraq was a disaster for his empire. The Washington gridlock of the two parties owned by the economic elite reveals a 1 percent losing its grip. We the people are very wrong if we believe that they are all-powerful.

We can organize alliances among constituencies that up until now have been easily divided. Waging Nonviolence blogger Kate Aronoff recently wrote about a blue-green alliance that is paying off. It takes good organizing, yes, and smart strategizing that emphasizes the big picture. It also borrows a page from the 1 percent’s playbook of being willing to play the long game, as they do with Amtrak and public schools.

As volatility increases and institutional legitimacy falls, our movements can grow more rapidly. That’s all the more reason to get smarter strategically and counter the opponent’s favorite moves, including divide and conquer, running down public services, and trying to delete the existence of people power.

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