Today I would like to suggest you spend some time outside… to connect or maybe reconnect with nature.
Many studies have shown sigificant health benefits from exposure to nature…. a reduction in stress, anxiety and depression and an increase in energy, fitness, immune functioning and vitamin D intake.
You don’t need to go on a major journey to experience the benefits of nature… Living in inner city Brisbane I have learnt to appreciate the wildlife around me birds, possums, bats, frogs, ants, bugs, grashoppers, trees, shrubs, vines, and grass.
Especially good areas for finding wild nature are abandoned houses and buldings or building sites…. take a walk around yuor neighbourhood and see what you can find.
You can bring nature into yr house too… house plants improve air quality by up to 90%, you could even grow herbs in sunny areas and window sills.
Anyway moving on to what’s on today’s show … we’re going to be looking a G in the Anarchist Alphabet and speaking with Stil Wild Still Threatened’s Miranda Gibson about the Tasmanian Forrest Agreements Bill which includes a clause which holds areas of forest up as ransom as a way of silencing dissent.
The fight to save Tasmania’s rainforests has been on going for years… these forests are magnificant … massive trees stand in these forests trees which are hundreds and also thousands of years old…. unique and threatened wildlife is also found in these forests including Tasmanian Devils, Spotted Quolls and Tasmanian White Goshawks.
These natural wonders don’t mean much to the forestry industry though… to them the forests mean money and really old trees are really big and worth lots of money once harvested.
In late April a big announcement was made of the signing of the Tasmania Forest agreement Bill… The Wilderness Society, Australian Conservation Foundation and Environment Tasmania were the environmental groups who signed the deal.
On this weeks show we take a break from the Anarchist/Activist alphabet to look into The International Day Against Police Brutality, listen to a brand new sedition from The Stimulator and hear some classic songs about the po po.
D is for Direct Democracy. A true and direct democracy in which all people have the option to have an equal voice and an equal impact in the decisions which effect their life.. Not a polyarchy, not a oligarchy, and not a representative democracy.
Direct democracy is based on the realistic notion that ‘people know best how to look after their own affairs’.
The notion of direct democracy is compatible with the idea of a delegate, someone who carries out the decisions you have made and is incompatible with the ideas of a representative
Who makes decisions on behalf of others or otherwise has an unequal say.
Thus a direct democracy may involve councils of delegates who’s role it is to represent the wishes of their group or community.
David Rovics is a singer from Portland Oregon in the US…. He sings many songs that relate to things anarchist care about such as –
Afghanistan, Anti-War, Bicycles, Colombia, Cuba, Depleted Uranium, Ecology/Environment, Endangered Species
Gender Relations, George W. Bush, Global Justice, Global Warming, Guerrilla Gardening, Indigenous People, Indonesia, Iraq, Korea, Labor/Labor History, Land Mines/Cluster Bombs, Latin America, Love Songs, Media, Mexico
Nuclear Bomb, Palestine, Pirates, Police Brutality Politics…. And you get the idea just about everything …
Rovics has made all of his recorded music freely available as downloadable mp3 files. He encourages the free distribution of his work by all non-profit means to promote his work and spread political messages, and speaks out against websites or programs like iTunes that charge money for downloading his songs. Rovics has also advocated the performing of his songs at protests and demonstrations and has made his sheet music and lyrics available for download.
During the show we play Crashing Down and Free the Airwaves.
Dead Prez Dead Prez – Are a revolutionary gangsta style hip hop duo from New York. Formed in 1996 dead prez focus is on social justice and corporate control of the media. They have released 3 studio albums and mix tapes including . 2010: Turn Off the Radio Vol. 4: Revolutionary but Gangsta Grillz which features Malcolm, Garvey Huey a tribute to Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey, Huey P. Newton
Malcom X – an African-American Muslim minister and human rights activist who has been called one of the most influential African Amercians in history. From 1952 he was a member of The Nation of Islam a religious movement stated goals are to improve the spiritual, mental, social, and economic condition of African Americans in the United States and all of humanity.
Originally Malcolm Little Malcolm changed his name to X a custom amongst Nation of Islam followers considered their surnames to have been imposed by white slaveholders after their African names were taken from them
As a spokesman for the Nation of Islam he taught black supremacy and advocated separation of black and white Americans—in contrast to the civil rights movement’s emphasis on integration. After breaking with the Nation of Islam in 1964—saying of his association with it, “I did many things as a [Black] Muslim that I’m sorry for now. I was a zombie then … pointed in a certain direction and told to march”—and becoming a Sunni Muslim, he disavowed racism and expressed willingness to work with civil rights leaders, though still emphasizing black self-determination and self-defense.
Marcus Garvey – was a Jamaican political leader, publisher, journalist, entrepreneur, and orator who was a staunch proponent of the Black nationalism…
He was active during the early 1900s and was a founder of Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA-ACL) a black nationalist organization and a number of others based on Pan Africanism an idealogy which encourages solidarity with Africans worldwide..society,
Huey Newton African-American political and urban activist who, along with Bobby Seale, co-founded the Black Panther Party in 1966.
Although born in Louisiana Newton grew up in Oakland California where he says he was made to feel ashamed of being black. When he was in his 20s Huey attended Oakland’s Merritt College where he became involved in politics and met Bobby Seale who he founded the Black Panther Party for Self Defense with in 1966.
The Party achieved national and international impact and renown through their deep involvement in the Black Power movement and in politics of the 1960s and 1970s
Emma Goldman feminist heroine, anarchist activist, editor, writer, teacher, jailbird and general trouble-maker was born on June 27, 1869 in Kovno which was then a part of the Russian Empire. In 1884 she travelled to America living in Rochester New York where she worked in a sweatshop sewing overcoats for more than ten hours a day, earning two and a half dollars a week.
On July 4 during a labor demonstration someone threw a bomb at police who were dispersing the crowd. 7 officers were killed. Controversially 8 Anarchists were convicted of conspiracy in relation to the bombing, 7 sentenced to death. The Haymarket Affair is considered significant as the origin of the May 1st International Labor Day.
When she moved to New York City Emma met radicals Alexander Berkman and Johann Most. She soon became a public speaker on women’s equality, free love, workers’ rights, free universal education regardless of race or gender, and anarchism.
Goldman campaigned and went to prison for the right of women to practice birth control. She argued that a political solution was not enough to get rid of the unequal and repressive relations between the sexes. There had to be massive transformation of values, most importantly in women themselves. Only anarchist revolution and not the ballot, in Emma’s view, would set woman free.
During her life she was arrested and imprisoned for her beliefs her longest sentence being for involvement in setting up “No Conscription” leagues and organizing rallies against the First World War.
Goldman, in her political youth, held targeted violence to be a legitimate means of revolutionary struggle. Goldman at the time believed that the use of violence, while distasteful, could be justified in relation to the social benefits it might accrue. She advocated propaganda of the deed— or violence carried out to encourage the masses to revolt. She supported her partner Alexander Berkman’s attempt to kill industrialist Henry Clay Frick.
Emma and Alexanda Berkman were deported when Attorney General Alexander Mitchell Palmer and J. Edgar Hoover, head of the U.S. Department of Justice’s General Intelligence Division, were intent on using the Anarchist Exclusion Act of 1918 to deport any non-citizens they could identify as advocates of anarchy or revolution.
“Emma Goldman and Alexander Berkman,” Hoover wrote while they were in prison, “are, beyond doubt, two of the most dangerous anarchists in this country and return to the community will result in undue harm.”
One of the most famous quotes attributed to her is “If I can’t dance it’s not my revolution.
Or “If I can’t dance I don’t want to be in your revolution,”
At the dances I was one of the most untiring and gayest. One evening a cousin of Sasha [Alexander Berkman], a young boy, took me aside. With a grave face, as if he were about to announce the death of a dear comrade, he whispered to me that it did not behoove an agitator to dance. Certainly not with such reckless abandon, anyway. It was undignified for one who was on the way to become a force in the anarchist movement. My frivolity would only hurt the Cause.
I grew furious at the impudent interference of the boy. I told him to mind his own business, I was tired of having the Cause constantly thrown into my face. I did not believe that a Cause which stood for a beautiful ideal, for anarchism, for release and freedom from conventions and prejudice, should demand the denial of life and joy. I insisted that our Cause could not expect me to become a nun and that the movement should not be turned into a cloister. If it meant that, I did not want it. “I want freedom, the right to self-expression, everybody’s right to beautiful, radiant things.” Anarchism meant that to me, and I would live it in spite of the whole world–prisons, persecution, everything. Yes, even in spite of the condemnation of my own comrades I would live my beautiful ideal. [Living My Life (New York: Knopf, 1934), p. 56]
At 67 Emma travelled to Spain during the Spanish civil war and was involved in the CNT-FAI an anarcho syndicalist union…. She lived the final years of her life in Canada.
Bougainville Island is the main island of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville of Papua New Guinea…. Situated north east of Australia and under 2000kms away.
The first European contact with the island was in 1768 when a French explorer Louis De Bounainville claimed the island and named it after himself.
Since then it has been under the control of the Germans, Australia and Japan but eventually became part of Papua New Guinea … although the struggle for independence continues after civil war and a declaration of independence in 1975 and 1990.
I can’t relisten to it right now to tell you the words because I’m out in the sticks with a 18.74KB/S internet connection.
Which is ok because I can listen to the owl, frogs and crickets calling outside … if I was more in tune to nature I might find that they’re telling me much the same thing as the lyrics in the song.
The sentiment of the article below is very similar, power outages mean people become more human and do things like talk to each other, to strangers who in fact might live just next door or across the hallway.
The Tribes of New York: Back to the future?
“I don’t know how to save the world. I don’t have the answers or The Answer. I hold no secret knowledge as to how to fix the mistakes of generations past and present. I only know that without compassion and respect for all of Earth’s inhabitants, none of us will survive — nor will we deserve to.”
As the effects of Hurricane Sandy left much of lower Manhattan (and elsewhere) in the dark, I couldn’t help but recall the events — and lessons — of Aug. 14, 2003: the day/night of the Eastern seaboard’s most recent major blackout.
When the blackout of ’03 dimmed the mighty skyline, I could suddenly see stars… zillions of them blinking at me from beyond the unlit skyscrapers. Traffic lights were out of commission, but to the southeast, Mars provided the only red light we really needed.
By coincidence, our crimson neighbor was closer to Earth than ever before and the power outage gave us Easterners an excellent view of Mars’s southern hemisphere from a mere 34.6 million miles away.
Still, even with the stars twinkling above and little green Martians close enough to reach out and shake my hand, it was when I returned my gaze back down to the streets that I truly couldn’t believe my eyes. That clammy evening, one could witness a sight even more uncommon than any celestial spectacle.
Across the darkened city, Big Apple denizens stopped hustling. They sat still and talked to each other. No computers, no televisions, practically no telephones… just face-to-face communication (even if it was too dark at times to actually see faces).
Huddled around flickering candles and eating food before it could spoil, longtime Astoria neighbors introduced themselves, discovering similarities and answering the question of the day: “Where were you when the lights went out?”
This unforeseen solidarity was accomplished without the assistance of e-mails, texts, or tweets. Money didn’t change hands, no cell phone radiation was emitted, no air was conditioned. Under a sky full of stars and a visiting red space-mate, it was possible to encounter the sort of life we may have evolved to live back in the “caveman” days.
Our modern caves, the subterranean tunnels of transportation known as “the subway,” were empty but the concrete jungle above them might as well have been the Savannah. The tribes of Astoria sat around fires — sharing food and communal stories. Some even beat on drums.
In times like this, it’s easier to appreciate that we each possess a physiology that evolved to negotiate the Stone Age. Here lies the rub: we live in the Space Age. We are urban cavemen… overmatched in our daily crusade to navigate an artificial reality because we’ve lost contact with our primal instincts.
For one thing, we likely didn’t evolve to be surrounded by this many people. Thus, in our futile search for a manageable tribe, we preserve our attention for a handful of fellow humans. What’s vexing is how to deal with the millions not in our tribe… but still in our face. Subsequently, we inventive mortals have cultivated the ability to hastily disregard non-tribe members.
“In the busy streets, you develop human traffic skills of amazing dexterity,” writes zoologist Desmond Morris. “In crowded buses, trains, and elevators, you acquire a blank stare. You have eyes only for those you know. This enables you to enjoy the varied delights of the big city while mentally re-creating a personal tribe existence.”
But what happens when those streets aren’t busy… like, say, during the worst blackout in U.S. history? We may have eyes only for those we know, but what about when it’s too shadowy to tell the difference?
With our vision impaired enough to create the illusion of intimacy and our vaunted technology no longer at our overworked fingertips, we are gifted with a taste of a potentially different culture. Sure, things returned to “normal” when power was restored, but the experience left some of us wondering just what “normal” means.
The last time Mars got as close to Earth as it was in 2003 was some 60,000 years ago… an age when stars were easy to find and one could cause a blackout simply by dousing the fire.
The extraterrestrial lady in red will once again be 34,646,418.5 miles away in a mere 284 years. I wonder what kind of earthly culture will be there to greet her.
Mickey Z. is the author of 11 books, most recently the novel Darker Shade of Green. Until the laws are changed or the power runs out, he can be found on an obscure website called Facebook.
Things were beginning to look more hopeful for Tasmania’s old growth forests when in October 2010 environmental NGO’s, industry groups and Unions signed a statement of principles which appeared to pave the way for comprehensive forest protection and a restructuring of the logging industry.
Late last week though came the news that the talk had collapsed. Autonomous Action Radio spoke with Miranda today about what the talks had entailed and how people can act to help save these ancient pristine forests of Tasmania.