Occupy the World, spank the bankers! KPFA Radio

Jailed Occupy Sacramento protestor, Kevin Carter, issues a challenge to Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson!

OCCUPYSACRAMENTO_SHAWNHAMILTON_KPFA_22OCTOBER2011

(Audio): Kpfa 94.1 fm san francisco (4 minutes, 20 seconds into broadcast)

(Script):

Anchor’s Into: THE SACRAMENTO VERSION OF THE OCCUPY WALL STREET MOVEMENT TODAY PROTESTED IN FRONT OF DOWNTOWN BANKS, INCLUDING BANK OF AMERICA AND WELLS FARGO. THE OCCUPY WALLSTREET MOVEMENT WAS STARTED BY A FEW ACTIVISTS A MONTHS AGO IN LOWER MANHATTAN TO DRAW ATTENTION TO WHAT IT CONSIDERS WALL STREET GREED, AND THE MOVEMENT HAS GROWN TO INCLUDE 16 HUNDRED CITIES GLOBALLY. THE SACRAMENTO  GROUP, WHICH HAS ESTABLISHED ITS BASE AT CESAR CHAVEZ PARK NEAR THE CAPITOL, HAS BEEN FUNCTIONING SINCE OCTOBER 6, AND POLICE HAVE BEEN REGULARLY ARRESTING PROTESTORS ON ANTI VAGRANCY LAWS. SHAWN HAMILTON REPORTS FROM SACRAMENTO:

“SOME BANKS LOCKED THEIR DOORS TODAY WHEN A SMALL GROUP FROM OCCUPY SACRAMENTO PROTESTED IN FRONT OF THEIR LOCATIONS, ECHOING A GRIEVANCE SHARED BY PEOPLE WORLDWIDE THAT BANKS AND WALL STREET HAVE COLLUDED TO TRANSFER TREMENDOUS AMOUNTS OF WEALTH FROM 99% OF THE POPULATION TO THE TOP 1%.

KEVIN CARTER IS AN ACTIVIST WHO ATTENDED A SACRAMENTO CITY COUNCIL MEETING ON TUESDAY IN WHICH THE COUNCIL DECIDED TO KEEP ON THE BOOKS AN ANTI-VAGRANCY LAW THE CITY WAS USING TO JAIL PEOPLE WHO REFUSED TO LEAVE THE PARK AFTER MIDNIGHT. CARTER ADDRESSED MAYOR KEVIN JOHNSON, CITING MARTIN LUTHER KING JUNIOR’S “LETTER FROM BIRMINGHAM JAIL” IN WHICH KING OUTLINED HIS RATIONALE FOR COMMITTING CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IN ALABAMA. KING WAS ARRESTED FOR PARADING WITHOUT A PERMIT. CARTER SAID THE MAYOR NEEDS TO INFORM HIMSELF BETTER ON PROVISIONS OF THE CONSTITUTION AND ISSUED THIS CHALLENGE:

CARTER: “I CHALLENGE THE MAYOR. I WENT TO JAIL ALREADY, BUT I WENT TO JAIL WITH THE CONSTITUTION. I CHALLENGE YOU MAYOR JOHNSON–THIS IS BROTHER CARTER–I CHALLENGE YOU TO COME AND SIT WITH ME IN THE PARK AT ELEVEN O’ CLOCK AND GET ARRESTED WITH ME LIKE DR. KING AND LET’S SIT DOWN AND GO OVER THE CONSTITUION TOGETHER INSIDE OF THE JAILHOUSE. I CHALLENGE YOU AND URGE YOU TO TAKE THAT OVER WITH WITH COMPASSION AND LOVE.” (soundbite: 0:22)

MONA SALIMI SAYS MEDIA AND THE CITY COUNCIL OFTEN ASK WHAT THEIR DEMANDS ARE. SALIMI NOTES THAT NOT GIVING PUBLIC MONEY TO PRIVATE BUSINESS INTERESTS WOULD BE A GOOD START. IN ANY CASE, SHE SAYS, SOMETHING MUST BE DONE:

SALIMI: “THERE HAVE BEEN STRIKES AND WORKERS’ PROTESTS AND DEMONSTRATIONS SINCE PRETTY MUCH THE INCEPTION OF OUR COUNTRY, AND AS MUCH AS WE’D LIKE TO BELIEVE THAT WE ARE FREE, AND WE HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO PURSUE LIFE, LIBERTY, AND THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS–ALL OF THAT GOOD, WARM AND FUZZY STUFF, THE REALITY IS WE REALLY NEED TO GET UP AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.” (soundbite: 0:29)

ARYA RASHID SAID THE DEBT-BASED MONETARY SYSTEM NEEDS TO BE REPLACED BY SOMETHING THAT WORKS FOR SOCIETY AS A WHOLE—NOT JUST A TINY FRACTION OF IT. HE REPEATED A QUOTE THAT SAYS PLUTOCRACIES THINK ECONOMIC SLAVERY IS GREAT BECAUSE PHYSICAL SLAVERY REQUIRES THAT YOU FEED AND HOUSE YOUR SLAVES, BUT WITH ECONOMIC SLAVERY, THE SLAVES HAVE TO FEED AND HOUSE THEMSELVES. RASHID SAYS HIS GENERATION IS REALLY WORRIED:

RASHID: “I THINK IT’S EXTREMELY UPSETTING SPECIFICALLY BECAUSE OF THE FACT THAT WE’RE REALLY STARTING TO FEEL LIKE WE’RE BECOMING A LOST GENERATION. WE DON’T SEE THE LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL FOR US, AND IT’S VERY UNCOMFORTABLE FEELING LIKE WE HAVE NO POWER AND NO CONTROL OVER WHERE OUR FUTURE IS GOING. IT’S GROWN FROM, IT STARTED OFF AS KIND OF JUST A DEPRESSIVE STATE AND NOW MOVED ON TO–A LOT OF US ARE PRETTY UPSET.” (soundbite: 0:25)

IN A RELATED ACTION, NOVEMBER 5TH HAS BEEN DECLARED “BANK TRANSFER DAY,” AN EFFORT STARTED BY 27-YEAR-OLD KRISTEN CHRISTIAN TO ENCOURAGE PEOPLE WHO ARE MAD AT THE BANKS TO WITHDRAW THEIR MONEY. THE IDEA, SHE SAID ISN’T TO HIDE THE MONEY UNDER A MATTRESS BUT TO TRANSFER IT TO A CREDIT UNION OR SMALLER, LOCAL BANKS NOT INVOLVED IN THE LARGER-SCALE SWINDLES. WHILE THE EFFORT WASN’T FORMALLY STARTED BY THE OCCUPY WALL STREET GROUPS, MOST OF THE OCCUPY GROUPS ARE PROMOTING IT.

SHAWN HAMILTON, PACIFICA RADIO, SACRAMENTO”

Navajo Bumper Sticker on Homeland Security

I found this bumper sticker on the Navajo Reservation after leaving Oraibi on the Hopi mesas heading west towards the Grand Canyon. As you may know, the US government thought it would be good “containment” policy to surround Hopiland with a rival tribe. Good thinking Uncle Spam! Anyway, we found this in a curio shop in town. I bought two, which seemed to amuse the shopkeeper. I think they’re hilarious.

Kalama Sutra: Buddha’s Charter of Free Inquiry

Kalama Sutta

The people of Kalama asked the Buddha who to believe out of all the ascetics, sages, venerables, and holy ones who, like himself, passed through their town. They complained that they were confused by the many contradictions they discovered in what they heard. The Kalama Sutta is the Buddha’s reply.

Do not believe anything on mere hearsay.
Do not believe in traditions merely because they are old and have been handed down for many generations and in many places.
Do not believe anything on account of rumors or because people talk a a great deal about it.
Do not believe anything because you are shown the written testimony of some ancient sage.
Do not believe in what you have fancied, thinking that, because it is extraordinary, it must have been inspired by a god or other wonderful being.
Do not believe anything merely because presumption is in its favor, or because the custom of many years inclines you to take it as true.
Do not believe anything merely on the authority of your teachers and priests.
But, whatever, after thorough investigation and reflection, you find to agree with reason and experience, as conducive to the good and benefit of one and all and of the world at large, accept only that as true, and shape your life in accordance with it.

The same text, said the Buddha, must be applied to his own teachings.

Do not accept any doctrine from reverence, but first try it as gold is tried by fire.

A more thorough discussion of this text can be found here:  Soma Thera

Country Joe and the Fish at Woodstock: “Fixin’ to Die Rag”

“Fixin’ to Die Rag” is one of the best anti-war songs of the period. It’s sad, but we seem to have forgotten all the lessons of the Viet Nam War, and we’re right back where we started–doing it again in Iraq and Afghanistan and Libya and places we don’t even know about because the “national security state” doesn’t tell us. Our job is just to pay for covert action, not ask questions.

History could be so valuable if we would only learn from it, but we never do. Like Country Joe says, Give me an “F…., etc”!

Like Joe, that’s about all I can say to sum up these issues.

Shawn

[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dATyZBEeDJ4]

Koyaanisqatsi (Life Out of Balance) 1982 Original Movie

Koyaanisqatsi is a Hopi Indian word that means “life out of balance.”

It refers, of course, to us and the supposed “civilization” we have created.

Are we civilized or are we insane?

An art-house circuit sensation, this feature-length documentary is visually arresting and possesses a clear, pro-environmental stance. Koyaanisqatsi is composed of nature imagery, manipulated in slow motion, double exposure or time lapse, juxtaposed with footage of humans’ devastating environmental impact on the planet. The message of director Godfrey Reggio is clear: humans are destroying the planet, and all of human progress is pointlessly foolish.

很酷的動畫影片 ‘The Fly’ by Hanjin Song

“A warrior must overcome a pesky fly in order to achieve a state of tranquility. Can he achieve his goal before he is pushed to his breaking point?

The Art of Meditation”  (2:44 min)

Click Either Link

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柔能勝剛

Happy Chinese New Year!  農曆新年快樂!