Super Rich Salvation Plan 98

Are you really in the bottom 98% if you make under a million, Papi?

— the author’s son

If you’re not into a redistribution of wealth in the U.S., that’s okay. You should read this anyway. If you’re not against U.S. wars overseas or torture, that’s okay. You should read this anyway. Why? In short, because Ban Ki-moon, a relatively conservative Secretary General for the U.N., has asserted that if the world’s nations don’t come to an unprecedented agreement on the environment at Copenhagen this December “it’s all over.” As in end of the world as we know it. And since I can guarantee you that the gathering in Denmark will NOT produce what’s necessary in time, this article — assuming that Ban Ki-moon is “off” by a couple of years respecting deadline — just might provide salvation of a sort.

The proposal below, Plan 98, tries to address multiple issues, but whether or not we embrace this or that particular issue together, you can count on this piece being worth the heartbeats to read because at heart it tries to motivate you — us all — to stop our ecocidal momentum. You’ll pick up on that pulse in the piece if you stick with it to the end. From there you can tweak things as you will, rejecting this, running with that.

There are a number of organizations/citizens who stand to benefit enormously by my proposal below. They include anti-war activists, health care advocates, supporters of immigrants, animal rights people, human rights groups, environmentalists of all (or most) stripes, feminists, sweatshop protesters, ALL groups concerned with the welfare of children, living wage fighters, prison reformers, union members, socially-conscious entrepreneurs, organic farmers, overburdened parents, disgruntled educators, writers, opponents of police brutality, artists, those who hate Monsanto unconditionally, and many others. Many, many others.

If readers can’t immediately connect the dots between Plan 98 and the above, I’ll be happy to go over the synapses.

As per the superrich and wealth and income distribution in America (The figures are worse today!), I recommend that the top 2% of the country’s population (holding almost all of the nation’s “financial wealth”) be forced to release a small portion of their fluid reserves immediately so that the lower 98% of our population benefits at once. The powers that be held emergency sessions to make sure that this and that financial institution did not fail, as they say. They can (They really can!) do the same thing for the purpose of — virtually overnight — ensuring that the bottom 80% of the U.S.. population goes from sharing only 7% of the country’s financial wealth to holding… double that!* Citizens who are in the top 20% at present (in terms of financial wealth) but NOT in the top 2% will also gain somewhat, though not as much.

*Not so that consumerism can be increased. Rents could be paid, mortgages. A tooth pulled.. Sight restored. Funerals financed. That sort of thing. Okay, maybe the purchase of one harmonica. [You don’t want to lose your sense of humor here.]

How we will determine who falls into what category — all the devilish details — can be worked out easily enough. Enough with anal-retentive game plans, sphincter tight ordering! The first fun, (loose) order of business is to see who’s on board with what can easily be labeled (and dismissed prematurely) as a socialist idea. [Never mind that many of our major (destructive) corporations and the Pentagon, among other elements in society, are subsidized (and have been for quite a long time) very socialist-like.] With Plan 98 we’re focusing on benefiting the vast majority of our population, but NOT to the same over-the-top degree as corrupt corporations et al. have profited along (hidden) “socialist” lines.

PLEASE don’t worry about some underprivileged person getting something for nothing on occasion. The top 2% that we’re targeting get away with way more — Like murder and unprecedented theft! — on a regular basis, at more of a cost to society than the poor of this nation could possibly drain from our common coffers if they worked at exactly that 24×8.

No immigrant, Mexican or any other, could possibly be as illegal in this country as the U.S. abominations abroad are illegal. And there is no standard by which any immigrant presence in this country can count as remotely comparable to our immoral atrocities conducted abroad. Not just in terms of the wantonly horrific, unnecessary military aggression, but — also — with regard to our dumping of toxic waste into the environments of other nations via routine Pentagon practice.

Like Green Day asks: Do you know your enemy?

The U.S. military is arguably the single greatest polluter on earth. So cutting out what we’re doing in Columbia, what we’re trying to pull off in Africa, what we intend to do further in Afghanistan and Iraq and Pakistan and Iran… well, that would go a long way toward making this a better world. Increasing safety to boot.

The lifestyle of the Super Rich — the upper 2% — is killing the earth. I’m sure I don’t have to delineate how they’re contributing, to what enormous extent. Our wars, war-related prep/experimentation, and Pentagon indiscretions are doing their number on the planet too… and keep the vast majority of the country — unnecessarily — without necessities.

If you can rise above the self-serving fears those two have inculcated in you (through our educational system, media fare, etc.), and come up with your own definition of what being patriotic is, or what life is all about… then perhaps you’ll want to embrace Plan 98.

Now here’s where we get practical, hands on. Here’s where you go to work… beyond what’s your work*… without your present work suffering.

*Even if 50% of the country were doing “good work” individually, it wouldn’t be enough. Something must be done on a large scale in solidarity. And with that 5% or 10% would be enough… if a lot of them were from California.

If you help us to put TOSCA’S twelve unaffiliated, non-politician citizens into the Governor of California’s office (so that they can serve together on an equal basis ((In lieu of a single self-serving careerist (once again).)) ) in 2010, I promise you that we’ll take our best shot at dismantling/undermining the electoral system as it stands, our ecocidal environmental momentum as it moves, and abominable U.S. practices on all fronts.

Things are clearly getting worse daily. The only chance we have, I believe, is for everyone to get behind helping us to put a dozen radical citizens into the Sacred Seat in Sacramento, California for the purpose of helping the public to self-educate about the need for a revolution.

It won’t work?

That’s what they always say. But, then, right now there’s 98% (of others) who just might get it. So that it could be made — forced — to work. A 2% California solution giving them time/urging them to get on board too… to see what might happen, could happen.

In spite of the hypnosis going on, I like the disgruntled odds. And I LOVE the potential payoff.

Richard Oxman has been an activist since he was seven-years-old at the Peekskill Riots. He's been a professor and a worldwide educator on all levels for half-a-century, and he can be contacted at Read other articles by Richard.

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  1. balkas b b said on September 12th, 2009 at 2:41pm #

    As far as i know, a state was set up by the feudal lords and kings. US was set up by largest land owners. It was set up, i conclude, so as to totally exclude upwards from 95% of the pop from decisions making.
    If this observation is true to any degree, we first need to change this iniquity.
    Thruout history, and everywhere, society, broadly, was/is composed of the cosa nostra [kings, nobles, ceos] and cosa mias.
    On cosa mia side, people are near-total dependencies. They are divided by ‘religion’ and in thinking; thanks to the cosa nostra strivings.

    If this is the root cause for inequality in wealth-sharing, then all we have to do is to meld hundreds of orgs working ad hoc or at cross purposes into one ad hoc [right to be informed, educated, obtain healthcare] org or movement.
    I thought that nader’s people had just started such an ad hoc group [or is it party?].
    in short, “them” have a cosa nostra; we must have our own cosa nostra! tnx

  2. Richard Oxman said on September 12th, 2009 at 2:59pm #

    I love lots about Ralph Nader. I do have a question, however, whether or not he’s into enough “institutional change” across the board. Ralph Nader would have been infinitely better for the country than Obama… even if he had been totally stymied once in office. In part, because his words and energy would have all been about stymying so much about the powers that be. That said, we need a revolution of sorts with excessive institutional change on the agenda, initiated at once. The attempt, at least, has to be made… whether or not this one or that one is ready.

  3. Max Shields said on September 12th, 2009 at 3:21pm #

    Richard, I don’t think, as much as it’s a worthy cause, that a soft landing is in the offing. We are on a collision course with nature.

    One of the arguments for nation-states is that you have collective of governments that can come under one tent. It was that premise that created the United Nations. The ultimate outcome has been a Faustian wager of sorts. There are still wars, and the US leads the pack. The idea was to keep nation-states talking, diplomacy and the like, and avoid conflict, or at least make conflict manageable.

    None of it has worked. The biggest violator on every front, the USA, has made containment of polution of all sorts impossible. The race has been on and the US leads the way.

    No, this is a long emergency, and all the outcries from Secretary General for the U.N. aren’t going to change this trajectory.

    It is worthwhile to forge ahead and look for opportunities, but in those quiet sane moments, we realize that this is not going to end well…it is a long emergency…and while the species will probably continue on, it will do so in much smaller numbers on far less land. The struggle will be like a tsunami, but few, if any places will be spared, and so there will be no “outside” aid.

    Most all other talk of US empire, and Israel Zionism will pale in comparison…no one will care if Palestinians get a state or end up in the Red Sea…all will be quieted chatter…

  4. Richard Oxman said on September 12th, 2009 at 3:38pm #

    It is difficult to argue with the thrust of your entry, Max. Well-put with a lot of deserving angles underscored. I really mean that; you’ve spotlighted worthy nooks and crannies. That said, during those quiet, sane moments… it is possible to contemplate “movement” through impossible, more-than-daunting seas. This is not to wax and wane poetic. That sea into which we will all dissolve — whether or not the worst environmental scenarios come to pass — beckons us to not put up with what can be screamed at. And I don’t mean screaming on DVoice either. I mean screaming in action, asking certainly for no guarantees, not expecting this or that by way of an outcome. Not “protest” along sociological or historical lines. Action designed to address the following:
    The world stands out on either side
    No wider than the heart is wide
    Above the world is stretched the sky
    No higher than the soul is high
    The heart can push the sea and land
    Farther away on either hand
    The soul can split the sky in two
    And let the face of God shine through
    THESE LINES… though they come from poetry…and these lines… though they invoke the name of “God”… do not emerge for me as poetry or religious in the traditional senses. Rather, they poetically point to something private in my soul that resonates in some glorious efforts from the past… to which I feel an obligation… and resonates with something “in the future” to which I surely am connected to… bound to insist upon, forced to scream about in action, praying for solidarity in an indifferent universe… knowing the impossibility of being silent, mere screaming on DVoice being silent. Besides, I have children. LOve, Ox P.S. I very liked your contribution, Max.

  5. Mulga Mumblebrain said on September 12th, 2009 at 5:28pm #

    I frequently find myself day-dreaming of a world based on human solidarity and amity, where humanity uses its manifest gifts to enrich the lives of every living creature, and ensures that the planet’s biospheres remain intact to nurture future generations. I dislike the expression Utopia, as it inherently dismisses such dreams as unobtainable, and, hence, seems to me to take an a priori view of human nature as greedy, selfish and shortsighted.
    Of course humanity comes in all types, from the genuinely altruistic and generous, to the pathologically avaricious and cruel. And there cannot be any doubt which side has won in the contest to impose their psychology on human society. Unfortunately a primary side-effect of the victory of the violent and greedy is that the system they have imposed by force on the world, is totally self-destructive. The metaphorical comparison with cancer is, in my opinion, entirely apt. We are entering the global cachectic stage of extreme wasting and metabolic derangement as the demands of the neoplastic economic system drain the rest of the organism of sustenance. Salvation at this stage relies on ‘spontaneous remission’, in other words a miracle.
    The calamity we face is proof, I believe, that spiritual evil and moral insanity, manifested in grotesque economic dogma that do not pass the laugh test of commonsense, but always benefit the rich and greedy at the expense of everyone and everything else and political systems of exquisite hypocrisy and cynical fraudulence, like ‘capitalist democracy’, perhaps the most perfectly self-contradicting confabulation in history, have triumphed in human affairs. That triumph will kill us all soon, unless, as I suspect, the fiends in charge plan to cull vast swathes of the global population. I do know however, with absolute certainty, that unless private economic power is destroyed, there will never be true democracy in any form, and that those who control the planet’s wealth are as indifferent, if not downright hostile, to the lives of the ‘little people’ they despise, as any aristo of France’s Ancient Regime or a slave trader in 19th century America or a sweat-shop owner in Indonesia or a chocolate industry executive handling the product of West African child slave labour. The world is divided between human beings, who sweat and toil, and build everything, and generally care for each other, and the parasites, who suck the life blood out of the rest. These parasites have proven too avaricious, too greedy, and have sucked the very life out of their host, the planet and its living systems, and have brought this debacle on us all. It is they who must either reform themselves entirely, so as to become different, better people, or go.

  6. Richard Oxman said on September 12th, 2009 at 6:07pm #

    Another exquisite entry here, Mulga M. Yes, very much on target. The weight of The Horrible Ones, however, made me think of both the “horror” in the Good Ones AND the not-so-horrible-but-bad-enough in the Good Ones. So… if WAR it is, following a new paradigm for WAR… then maybe it’ll help on some level short term, maybe long term… if those who are GOOD ONES respond differently to those who are GOOD ONES. Specifically, Mulga and Max have nurtured me here. For conversation’s sake, let’s label us as three GOOD ONES. And let’s throw in Balbas, why not? And those editors who are willing to at least respond to my emails. And those writers who are willing to respond to my emails. And other GOOD ONES. Oh yes, my point: GOOD ONES who succumb to cynicism and resignation TO THE POINT WHERE NO OPENINGS EXIST ANY LONGER… guaranteeing the worst possible visualization… well, let’s just say they’re an UNNECESSARY DRAG on my good energy. Our good energy. Our possibilities. Our possible MIRACLES, to use Mulga’s word, not that Mulga meant it that way necessarily.

    What is that DOWN attitudinal set (imposed by one Good One on another Good One) based on? Partly on prediction. Speculation, reasonable, logical, etc. But thinking ahead as if MIRACLES can’t take place, as if one doesn’t sometimes get luckier the harder one gets or with the degree to which one abandons LOGIC, PROOF.

    I submit that we act like Marat in the bathtub with his severe skin disease (as per Peter Weiss’ Marat/Sade) and commit to turning ourselves inside out… to invent a meaning… in the face of the indifference of the Universe. In the face of the faceless, soulless scum who Mulga so aptly described.

    To another reader/writer, in another setting, I might very well approach this CHALLENGE a different way… tomorrow. For now, let that sink in… and tell me why we can’t declare WAR on the powers that be from an unprecedented angle, an angle which might manifest itself if the “Good Ones” were willing to extend themselves with one another above and beyond naming The Obvious which seems to have gone on FOREVER.


  7. Richard Oxman said on September 12th, 2009 at 6:22pm #

    And, by the way, in case it isn’t clear… with regard to that excellent point about capitalism as it stands being incompatible with democracy… please note that if TOSCA were to actually get its socialist/anarchist (whatever) foot in the gubernatorial door… you can bet that all engines would be “go” for undermining the institutions that need to go. It really would be like the Go Gos attitudinally going to the podium during press conferences. Abbie Hoffman would be addressing the press, and dressing down The Horror for what it is (using Mulga’s language), whilst dressing up as if it were Halloween every day. To unsettle everyone and everything from each and every angle… legally, non-violently.

    And the best would be brought out in the brightest and the dumbest over what they have in common… which is for starters, perhaps, an interest in true universal health care (not the Medicare variety), an interest in ending slaughter and its blowback, an interest in living life joyously… not according to schools’ rules.

    Not fooling,

  8. Mulga Mumblebrain said on September 13th, 2009 at 2:01am #

    The main problem with any violent response to elite omnicidal tendencies, is that violence is their strong point. They have no qualms over using it, in fact, let’s be frank, they love it. The life affirmers, on the other hand, abhor violence, and are unlikely to survive any fight to the death with psychopaths. After all it’s just as easy to send a Hellfire missile into an American suburb full of thought criminals revolting against their masters, as it is to use one to incinerate an Afghan wedding party. Moreover, once we resort to their tactics, then we become like them. They win even if they lose, because their spiritual poison will have transmuted our nature nearer to their base substance.
    So, my recommendation is to simply withdraw from the game. Stop buying anything not essential to a decently sufficient life, save every spare cent, share everything with your friends and neighbours. Grow your own food, or buy it only directly from the producers. Starve the parasite middle-men of sustenance. Share your surplus with your friends and neighbours. Sell the car. Educate your children in the wickedness and unsustainability of greed. Plant trees everywhere, even if the evil ones pull them out. Let weeds run rampant, anything green and living. Vote out one lot of the parasites, then the other, if you see voting as useful.
    The masters have, doubtless, contingency plans for a serfs’ revolt of non-violent non-participation in the system. It can only be resisted by massive peaceful resistance, clogging the courts and prisons. Once the movement gets momentum, particularly once the looming disaster concentrates minds and tightens (or is it loosens?) sphincters, the system will be under greater strain than ever. Perhaps, with luck, it will crack, and the anti-life brigade will disappear up their own fundamental orifices. Yes, I know, but I love faery stories with happy endings.
    Of course such a withdrawal, if widespread, will cause great suffering as industrial and consumption growth fall. The masters will protect their wealth and profits first, so they’ll jettison working people preferentially. Growing unemployment will make voluntary withdrawal from capitalism very unpopular, and you can imagine how the media sewer will sink to the occasion to protect their owners’ interests. The prospect of organised, Rightist vigilantism also looms. We’ll need to be well organised in mutual self-defence, there being no question of non-violent resistance when the goons have been mobilised.
    I think something along these lines is our only hope. Appealing to the masters’ better instincts is pointless, because they have none. Hoping to oust them politically is hopeless as they control the political, legal, media and business systems totally. Hoping they’ll turn back at the brink, out of concern for their children is pointless as they do not care what happens after they are dead. Violence is their preference, so must be avoided at all costs, although I suspect it will be thrust upon us. Radical non-co-operation, total withdrawal from the suicidal growth fetish, and diligent, co-operative work to repair ecosystems on the local level, these are my best guess as a possible way out of the labyrinth, before we come face to face with the Beast.

  9. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 5:15am #

    Mulga one of your best and soon we may see the only way if we wish to try. Where I live in the Southeast US some what lucky and land still unused. If I can ever help Mulga just ask.

  10. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 5:33am #

    Scientists carying out studies of wildlife in the Arctic say global warming is causing dramatic changes in animal and plant life, threatening some species with extinction.
    The report is a compilation of studies of Arctic eco-systems by an international team of scientists who have been collaborating during the fourth International Polar Year,which ended in 2008. Voice of America

    And in a few years as those dramatic changes continue there is another species that will start to go extinction, Human and that will be Worldwide not just Africa. The time is now think of this as kind of a war calm at peace.

  11. mary said on September 13th, 2009 at 6:25am #

    There is dramatic time lapse photography here displaying the massive ice loss from glaciers in Alaska, Greenland and Iceland. It’s about half way through if you don’t want to hear the whole talk.

    About this talk
    Photographer James Balog shares new image sequences from the Extreme Ice Survey, a network of time-lapse cameras recording glaciers receding at an alarming rate, some of the most vivid evidence yet of climate change.

  12. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:17am #

    I’ve only read — for the moment — the very beginning of Mulga’s entry, which opens with the bit about violence. Please note that the TOSCA plan is totally non-violent. Now to read the other entries above. I wonder why Mulga got off on that anti-violent tangent?

  13. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:38am #

    Now to address the other entries and the rest of Mulga’s.

    “Appealing to the masters’ better instincts is pointless, because they have none. ” Not that anyone is any longer talking in terms of TOSCA, but I am. For what it’s worth, TOSCA does not attempt to appeal to the better instincts of masters. So… it is not violent, and it isn’t filled with pie in sky in its head. As far as the electoral arena being controlled by the masters… I do have a way to get around the inevitable electoral fraud… to be shared with anyone on board, and refined with them in confidence. The LARGER POINT, however for Mulga, DON HAWAKINS and others is that the biz of retreating, repeated ad infinitum by like-minded souls is NOT a solution at all, not satisfying to any great degree. And one reason is that the air and groundwater situations… the aspects of life which affect everyone wherever they’re hiding, OBVIOUSLY, can’t be escaped. So for enlightened self-interest it’s worth the candle to at least try to build solidarity above and beyond sharing veggies with your neighbors. Your vegetable garden will not stay safe long, nor will your water supply (if it’s potable) once crap hits the fan and word gets around. BESIDES, what kind of satisfaction does that exclusive survival mentality bring? NOW FOR THE MUCH LARGER POINT: The non-violent retreat approach… if that’s what you insist upon sticking with… that is something that the DOZEN TOSCA GUVS can rant and rave about from the High Office in Sacramento. The essence of what Don and Mulga are FOR, regardless, would be touted as the direction to go in anyway. The Guv Coalition of TOSCA is all about helping people to self-educate before The Situation brings about extreme violence among the so-called GOOD PEOPLE virtually overnight because of this and that crashing suddenly. The citing of scientific evidence seems to be a pretty wasteful expenditure of heartbeats. When you’re living in a house on the second floor… it doesn’t help much to cite the fact that people have discovered that there is fire on the sixth and seventh floors… when you’re alerting people on the 3rd floor that there’s a fire on the 1st and 4th floors. Obviously, RETREAT is the way to go contingent upon what Life and your life is all about to you. But if you consider what I’ve covered above about TOSCA’S GUV coalition wanting to serve, partly, to head off the overnight violence scenario that would overwhelm all… and couple it with thoughts about what makes life worth living… maybe there will be a basis for renewed discussion. The satisfaction of growing and eating a turnip each day on one’s own is unneccesarily limited at the moment.

  14. balkas b b said on September 13th, 2009 at 11:39am #

    i have exchanged over three days three emails with chomsky.
    I asked him whether he recognized the right to return to one’s homeland.
    He decided it not say.
    I asked him also how did he know that voting for Obama wld be voting for lesser.
    As we know, he aplied false to fact either-or linguistic structure whenhe said that. In life, either-or structure seldom is correct.
    Multiple choices appear more accurate and adequate. Top wit: one cld have voted for nader, mckinney, greens or not voted at all.
    Other choices might have been to ask Obama if indeed voting for him wld result in less evil. Conferring with people like me who thought at that time that voting for O might be a vote for the same or even greater evil.
    He was angered and insulting but refused to explain what he really meant by adivising people to vote “lesser evil”.

  15. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 1:53pm #

    Bozh it is amazing to read many in the first part of the twenty first century trying to hold onto an old way of thinking. Never in human history have we faced such a dilemma. Relearning is a tuff one for many. What we face is not taught in school yet and you know that and probably these so called masters, elites don’t want to many people finding out this little fact.

  16. bozhidar balkas vancouver said on September 13th, 2009 at 2:20pm #

    don, yes,
    i was probably ab. 40+ yrs-old before i s’mhow began to make discoveries ab. the deleterious structures of society and governance.
    And imposed on us for ate least 8Kyrs by the land owners and in modern times work, land, money, industry owners.
    I do not remeber any particular illuminati [to me] who may have got me started thinking ab. these matters i have been writing for about 20+ yrs.

    It wasn’t marx, russel, lenin, trotzky, gandhi, luther king, engels, freud! tnx

  17. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 2:22pm #

    I’m confused by both Don’s and Balkas’ latest entries here. For the latter, I recommend that you share Chomsky’s email to you. The bit about “angered and insulting” (if you’re talkin’ ’bout him) is WAY unbelievable, to put it mildly. Also, he didn’t vote for Obama. He and Zinn… one voted for Cynthia, the other for Ralph. Discussion prior to the election could very well have pointed out — legitimately — differences. That has zero to do with endorsement, and the specifics would have to be delineated before rejecting anything out of hand. Always. In any election. Whenever someone talks about “differences.”

  18. Shabnam said on September 13th, 2009 at 2:58pm #

    Howard Zinn said the following regarding election 2008:

    In this situation we are desperate for change. So even though Obama does not represent any fundamental change, he creates an opening for a possibility of change. That’s why I am voting for him, that’s why I suggest to people that vote for him. To me it is a waste of Ralph’s energy to throw himself into the electoral process ….

  19. bozhidar balkas vancouver said on September 13th, 2009 at 3:13pm #

    that was a sneaky way of calling me a liar. Yes he was rude; in denial. He explicitly denied that he rationalized – when i said to him that according to my memory he rationalized the right of return away- the right away.
    He said that my memory was wrong.
    In next email I then asked him for permission to say inmy posts that he respects the right of return.
    he never gave me that permisssion. According to jeff blankford, chomsky had explicitly rejected pal`n right to return.
    And i did post his address: My computer does not at the moment print AT sign; tus i wrote “at“.
    richard, i had just ab. enough of your continuous accusations, complaints ab. not understanding what i say. Don`t read anything i say!
    And no one had ever comlained to me that they don`t understand what i write. So, this is the last warning!

  20. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 4:33pm #

    Shabnam, what your citing is OLD. Did you the check the date on your source? Fairly certain it was quite a bit before election. Could be wrong on the date, but prior to the election both Zinn and Chomsky made it clear that they were voting for other candidates. To point out any differences between Obama and Bush early on is something that the vast majority of humanity took part in… even among people who knew from the get go that Obama would serve the elites, U.S. hegemony.

    No one is arguing against Jeffrey Blankfort’s accusations here, Balkaas. You drag out stuff unnecessarily by not providing what Chomsky sent you… so that we can decide if it sounds rude, etc. I’ve followed a huge amount of Chomsky for forty years, and I’m hard put to remember a single instance of what I’d call rude behavior, words. Firm, yes, but rude no. “Angry” is fine with anyone contingent upon what is sent their way.

  21. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 4:48pm #

    “Whether a person feels positive or not is kind of a comment on their personality and of no great interest. You can find positive signs or you can find negative signs. How you evaluate them depends on something that happened in your life recently or something like that. There’s no objective way to do it. The important thing is you try to commit yourself to making the positive signs more real. Suppose you felt that there’s 99 percent of a probability that human civilization is going to be destroyed in the next hundred years, but one percent chance it won’t be, and that one percent offers some opportunities to do something. Well, you commit yourself to that one percent.”


    And so far the one percent is preventing any opportunities to try.

  22. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 5:23pm #

    What a lovely set of words, Don. I don’t agree, however, with the one percent theory. That’s why I wrote “If Noam and Daniel Had a Baby” Oxlove

  23. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 5:24pm #

    Your one percent theory, Don, not Noam’s. Oxy

  24. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 6:54pm #

    From the looks of the futures market out of Asia morning there maybe we are down to half a percent. I agree we need to start now but we have are selves in a bit of a pickle. It will take a Herculean effort 100% working together or not. Either way tuff times ahead. To put the problem out in the open and try is so much better than to not try and being afraid of change is human but so far it seems the thinking is to not try the question to me is why is it so important for a few to not try. Maybe they don’t know themselves.

  25. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:01pm #

    Can you elaborate (with a sentence) on “From the looks of the futures market out of Asia morning there maybe we are down to half a percent.” I’m terrible in the real world of THE MARKET. One thing that occurs to me, Don, in trying to address your closing “question” is that a lot of people are out of touch with their own mortality… which seems connected to their disconnect with nature… and connected with their lack of compassion… their lack of concern for “what comes after”… their humility about whatever the hell it is that they’re doing… in lieu of trying to contribute something to… sanity and beauty.

  26. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:20pm #

    Tomorrow here in the States we could see the start of a sell off in the Market and in Europe. To build a better World over night is not how it work’s. The problem is we have 9 years to change the industrial civilization in many way’s or we may miss our chance. Very hard choices are needed and cool smart minds working together. So far it’s policy makers not working together and talking shit so to speak. Anybody ready to give that people of Earth we are all in deep do do speech. Some have already done just that and you can find it on line if you look real hard. Unless that changes we are all going down the drain in not such slow motion.

  27. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:35pm #

    I invite everyone to imagine — bouncing off of Don’s decent comments — a Governor of California giving THAT speech… vigorously, creatively, repeatedly. People are not doing that. Imagine someone — twelve people like I’ve described here, actually — getting down in real terms with what’s coming down. Incessantly. PLUS giving direction, suggestions. The nine years that Don speaks of could be contributed to in a significant way if hard choices were underscored, encouraged… over time. As big a challenge as the unfeeling 1% are… just as big is the challenge of getting people in the bottom % categories to return calls, forgive, contribute, etc. It is an unnecessary complaint — Complaint which goes nowhere! — to cite the obvious. The straw men should be left out of the conversation at this point, and pressure should be applied to the very people who CLAIM to care, who claim to be on the Compassionate Side. Where are they? Why aren’t they sending in nominations for, say, TOSCA? Why aren’t they outlining what they’re doing in lieu of that proposed energy? I can name a hundred people off the top of my head like, say, Bill McKibben (of the wonderful 350 Project) who, along with his colleagues, couldn’t find the time to respond to my offer to move in solidarity on a basis that would suit his purposes. What do those people think they’re doing ignoring input? They cannot afford to be so busy, that way. They, sadly, are The Problem at this juncture, NOT the Bad Guys. Not The Trends. Let’s hope that Van Jones gets back. Daniel Ellsberg. Mike Davis. And let’s hope that Angela and others make themselves more accessible. Steve Earle, Green Day, Willie Nelson et al. What are they doing? Perhaps a reader out there will be kind enough to connect me with ANYONE in California. What are people doing? Yes, I know, they are complaining.

  28. Deadbeat said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:47pm #

    Shabnam, what your citing is OLD. Did you the check the date on your source? Fairly certain it was quite a bit before election. Could be wrong on the date, but prior to the election both Zinn and Chomsky made it clear that they were voting for other candidates. To point out any differences between Obama and Bush early on is something that the vast majority of humanity took part in… even among people who knew from the get go that Obama would serve the elites, U.S. hegemony.

    The date is 22 October 2008 posted it seem by the Real News. But Shabnam’s point should not be dismissed because of the date. His point, especially about Zinn, what that Zinn adopted the “Anybody But Bush/Safe State” strategy in 2004. 2004 would have been a much better year for the Left through Ralph Nader to make a REAL showing.

    John Kerry was a terrible and extremely weak candidate — charismatically as well as by class. However so-called members of the Left went out of its way to disrupt any real display of solidarity. Like I mention before the “Z-mag” Left through its support for “Anybody But Bush” that include Michael Albert.

    2004 was a watershed for the Left. Recall that Chomsky desired the anti-war movement as a “superpower” — meaning that a mobilized citizenry is the true agent of change. What really happened? The anti-war movement chose to crack up when the mention of Zionism and its obvious influence on the Iraq War was raised. UFPJ decided they didn’t want to band with International ANSWER who raised the question of Israel/Palestine. Some Leftist felt that ANSWER was wrong to do that because it would fracture the coalition. Others however felt they were right because the story being told to the public that the war in Iraq was for oil was extremely misleading. This split is caused the anti-war movement to demobilize.

    Nader and the Green Party on the other hand could not mend their difference in order for Nader to leverage his showing from 2000. In fact Zinn bought into the rhetoric that Bush was so bad that he had to be elected out of office rather than build up the Left. You also had Medea Benjamin from Code Pink throwing her support for David Cobb who was more an interloper than a real candidate. He was able to use a loophole in the Green Party bylaws to split the Green Party support for Ralph Nader.

    But the major point here is that Nader’s run in 2004 was vastly more important to the Left than it was in 2008. The reason was due to the public mobilization against the war in Iraq could have been expressed electorally through Nader especially had the Left “icon” like Chomsky, Zinn, Albert, et al all the names that Richard Oxman is now namedropping gave the unequivocal support to Nader in 2004. A strong showing by Nader in 2004 would have STRENTGEN the Left for 2008. The void left by the Left after 2004 was yawning and easily filled by Obama.

    What is consistent of Zinn and Chomsky is that they have NOT engage in the merest of civil disobedience. Supporting Nader in 2004 would have cost Zinn and Chomsky NO money which is one of Mr. Oxman’s appeals with his plan but in 2004 both Zinn and Chomksy chose to de-facto support of John Kerry via “Anybody But Bush/Safe State”.

    Now Mr. Oxman tries to come on Dissident Voice and defend them and that dissidents should follow Zinn and Chomsky should they give their imprimatur to his (IMO awful) plan when they couldn’t even support a real challenge to the Democrats at the most recent opportune moment in 2004.

    Since that time we’ve seen Chomsky defend AIPAC (by chastising Mearsheimer & Walt courageous outing of Zionism in the United) and apartheid (by countering Desmond Tutu assessment of Israel as worst than South Africa). Any real dissident IMO would want to distance themselves from such an individual and question why anyone would want the support of such a person.

  29. Don Hawkins said on September 13th, 2009 at 7:58pm #

    Things should be made as simple as possible but not simpler. That of course was written by a cool smart mind and he Einstein didn’t see what was coming to Earth well he had an idea. In some way’s we are all Einstein’s now if you just look and see.

    Through the release of atomic energy, our generation has brought into the world the most revolutionary force since prehistoric man’s discovery of fire. This basic force of the universe cannot be fitted into the outmoded concept of narrow nationalisms.
    For there is no secret and there is no defense; there is no possibility of control except through the aroused understanding and insistence of the peoples of the world. We scientists recognise our inescapable responsibility to carry to our fellow citizens an understanding of atomic energy and its implication for society. In this lies our only security and our only hope – we believe that an informed citizenry will act for life and not for death.
    A. Einstein, 1947

    An informed citizenry will act for life and not for death. The truth when informing the citizenry could be helpful. No not fair and balanced the truth.

  30. Richard Oxman said on September 13th, 2009 at 8:31pm #

    What an expenditure of energy over something that may have happened or may not have happened as you feel it, describe it… five years ago! I voted for Nader in 2004, did not vote at all in 2008. Zinn and Chomsky both voted for someone other than reps of the two major parties in 2008. But I believe the larger point here is that even if you were to be totally spot-on about your accusations/your concerns… you seem to be overly invested in characterizing figures who do not figure in what you CAN DO today… if you wanted to do anything that was socially-conscious. I would argue with you, but it’s not worth the candle when you are taking the Easy Chair of Pontification Totally Removed in Judgmental Mode from a distance from the lives of other human beings. What is the point of pointing out — even if you happened to be correct maybe — “flaws” in others? We all make lousy decisions, take stances that have holes in them on and off, yes? All of us, yes? I must say, however, that it doesn’t gain you any respect for you to make such a horridly “off” statement about Noam and Howard not being engaged in civil disobedience. You simply don’t know your history, their history. And CD, btw, is not the only way in which engaged people contribute, make a difference. Gauge your own contributions relative to what they have done. In closing, I just want to add that your take on the role of $$$ vis-a-vis the TOSCA plan is not spot-on at all. You use the concept of doing w/o money in two different senses, contexts. I have very different feelings about Albert and Medea; you lump everyone together in an effort — it seems — to do the old dance of “I’m on the correct side of this issue, was… and THEY aren’t/weren’t.” That dance can be done all day long every day w/o getting anywhere. DON’S SHORT EINSTEIN STUFF was valuable.

  31. richard fle-man said on September 14th, 2009 at 12:24am #

    oxman,you seem and have seemed,to be tapping into a reservoir of righteous energy.this most recent essay seems more focused than many of your contributions i have read in the past.the golden state,cali; is in a fix,a flux.but it is still cali,the” golden state”.a place we’ve all looked to over the years.TOSC A might be a plan,.to the extent that i understand it.lets get all quixotic,(tho i live in s.w.fl.,as republican as you can imagine).but lets go all john lennon and see what we can imagine ,whats the downside?what do we lose? gotta lose smart and just keep rollin the snowball.its cataclysmic times on so many levels,and yet so seemingly mundane (to so many)…societal breakdowns can matastizize quickly,with authoritarian responses as the default.In just these few comment threads ,civil disobedience,debt revolt,exquisite anti-war statements, have been posed.if its comin down as quickly as many scientists and activists claim that it is,we(the elusive we) will have to formulate responses with regard to all the known and unknown problems we will face.

  32. Mulga Mumblebrain said on September 14th, 2009 at 1:33am #

    No, Richard, it is not your plan that I see as being violent. It’s my own ruminations, which I was turning over again in my head before I posted. Sorry about the poor constructionof my argument. I often, being a Homo sapiens after all, fantasise about violent responses to the fiends responsible for the dawning horror. Of course I reject them, for moral reasons, and for the practical reasons I outlined, in that violence is the horrible ones’ strongest suit.
    I remain, forgive me, deeply pessimistic concerning political solutions, but I’ll not expound on my reasons. Too much negativity. Perhaps we ought to try the political process, until the bitter end, which, in my opinion, will be when the powers-that-be institute a totalitarian system to protect their privilege. But I’m certain we must attempt a retrenchment at the same time. Radical non-co-operation with the Beast seems to me worth trying. We could utilise systems like permaculture to set about re-greening that which industrial man, Homo destructans, has ravaged. I think millions of guerilla gardeners could make a real difference, and the collapse of destructive business as usual through a voluntary withdrawal of demand, is a necessary step. I think the central modus operandi of the capitalist death-cult is economic growth. We have to undermine that or all is lost.

  33. Deadbeat said on September 14th, 2009 at 2:06am #

    Mulga Mumblebrain writes …

    Radical non-co-operation with the Beast seems to me worth trying.

    Which is another way of saying CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. This is a key component that is missing from Mr. Oxman’s plan and why Mr. Oxman’s plan in my assessment of his plan will not succeed.

    [1] I still cannot see how a write-in campaign will energize a populous that has become too cynical to vote.

    [2] It is too easy by the ruling class to make a mockery of such an effort by running their own comparable campaign thus confuse the public and water down the votes and participation

    [3] How will such a coalition be built and around what issues? As we have already seen, some of the people that Mr. Oxman hoping to attract has dubious records in supporting third party efforts.

    [4] Who will appeal to the grassroots? And by grassroots I mean people of color in the hood and barrios and the poor now living in tent cities.

    IMO there is a lot of anger in the populous meaning that the time is ripe for Civil Disobedience and Mulga offers some very non-violent and community based suggestions at civil disobedience. Such efforts will build solitary and bring issues — sorely needed issues that must be discussed — to the general pubic via these kinds of initiatives.

    The REAL question is when a uncomfortable topics are raised will the solidarity hold or fail. As we have seen with the recent anti-war movement solidarity failed when uncomfortable topics were raised. This is why seeing the list of icons that Mr. Oxman believes he needs to bless his idea a foreboding signal to the lack of success of his initiative for one but overall I see his idea wasting the precious time and energy of concern citizens.

  34. Don Hawkins said on September 14th, 2009 at 4:46am #

    New Delhi, Sept 13 With stalemate over emission cut threatening any consensus at Copenhagen climate summit in December, a leading environment expert today said the rift between the developed and the developing world on the issue is way too wide for a major breakthrough.

    “The gap between developed and developing countries on climate change is too wide. So, I feel that there won’t be a major agreement,” Mohan Munasinghe, vice-chairman of the Noble peace prize winning UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, told PTI.

    The major issues that remain the bone of contention for any breakthrough on climate change pact include disparities between the two worlds when it comes to global warming and greenhouse gas emissions.

    The rift between the developed and the developing world on the issue is way too wide for a major breakthrough. Another way of looking at this is rich and poor. The have and have more only a few and the rest of us. Cap and trade in the States is a joke on the human race and do the so called leaders else where know this, yes. From now until Copenhagen and the climate bill in the States the big this and big that will be out in force with bullshit, illusion. So what will happen not much then what? Well it will take a few months to sort out the bullshit then the best minds we have the good guy’s who still care about future generations will try there best to get the word out and of course the system and the darkside will be talking like second graders with more illusion, bullshit and pitting one side against another. Then what well a flying sauce will land in front of the Capital a few little people will give some speech’s and then the World leaders so called will face the problem use knowledge the real thing imagination will start on a grade scale and working together will become the new normal. Think of this as kind of a war calm at peace the you know what is about to hit the fan.

  35. Deadbeat said on September 14th, 2009 at 4:52am #

    I recommend that the top 2% of the country’s population (holding almost all of the nation’s “financial wealth”) be forced to release a small portion of their fluid reserves immediately so that the lower 98% of our population benefits at once.

    Yeah Oxman you are heading in the right direction but I’m not certain that TOSCA is going to achieve redistribution of wealth. But it could help bring attention to dreadful inequality that exist.

  36. Max Shields said on September 14th, 2009 at 5:37am #

    And Deadbeat what do YOU suggest is a means of “distributing wealth”?

  37. Richard Oxman said on September 14th, 2009 at 7:47am #

    There are too many words here clouding, creating confusion. I recommend that each reader who is sincerely interested in getting clarification on TOSCA limit themselves to a single question. One at a time. And, then, we can go back and forth… right here, if you like, or via tosca.2010]atat[ Instead of my trying to respond to each and every fevered pronouncement, the emotional diarrhea. That’s NOT to be disrespectful. Seriously, one point at a time, please, if you will. That way one and all can more easily digest what each of us has to say. What aspect, what concern regarding TOSCA do you have? Prioritize, please. For the moment, let me take up one point made above… which, if they links provided had been read, might have been answered. To wit, the question of HOW one can attract people who have cynically dropped out of the electoral arena. That IS a fundamentally sound question. And it deserves a REPEAT answer.

    First of all, TOSCA is ultimately about undermining electoral politics as it stands for the very MAIN reason many people have rejected the arena. Only 39% voted in the last CA gubernatorial election, and so… TOSCA’s interest is in the very group that has chosen to stay away. You can begin to reach those people one-on-one… as I’ve underscored before many times here… with a recruited friend approaching their closest friends for starters… easily showing how the people connected with TOSCA are a far cry from anything that electoral politics has ever offered up. “Corruption” is not conceivable with the people who will be on our slate. Money will be a zero factor in all TOSCA does. Power will be shared for the first time in history. All decision-making will be filmed for public consumption live, daily. Access to our group of a dozen or their very close associates will be easy, with no generic communications used… ever. These are just some of the appeals that can be used AMONG FRIENDS for starters… to motivate someone who has no intention of having anything to do with politics anymore. People WANT to be involved, but they need to be given NEW reasons for getting engaged again, or engaged for the first time. We have that to offer.

    A number of things, as, again, I’ve said before, like how we intend to deal with the inevitability of electoral fraud will not be discussed ahead of time, except on a need to know basis in confidence, in private… as people come on board. BUT… questions like what I’m trying to address above CAN be answered in detail right now. For the issue above, if you are interested I have even more to delineate. Ditto respecting other issues… which I look forward to readers bringing up AGAIN… SO THAT WE CAN DEAL WITH WHAT’S MOST IMPORTANT TO YOU FIRST… and then move on… hopefuly culminating in readers participating in action… not just posing questions as an excuse to avoid involvement at any cost. Love, Richard

  38. bozh said on September 14th, 2009 at 2:11pm #

    yes, i cld have printed or pasted all four of chomsky’s responses to me over the last few days. Unfortunately, i don’t know how to do that. I am very poor with typing and doing stuff with computer.
    If you wld like, i can scribble dwn what he said . He started conversation with:
    “I’m afraid i can’t make much sense of this. A few comments and then i think we shld agree that we can’t communicate sensibly.” This is more or less OK. I wld not talk to people like that!

    In replying to my:
    “Palestinians were expelled with the aim that they never return. They were barred from returning after day one.
    Even so, some of the people who were expelled or fled for fear of life, are still alive. You aslo confirmed this, i’v noted.

    NC replies:
    “I’m glad you agree with what i’ve said all my life, even as the numbers have very sharply diminished- and of course the issue has not been that, but their descendants, not covered by 194 or any other int’l instrument”

    A caveat! I have never stated that the descendants have no right to; thus i do not agree with him that solely palestinans who were born before ’48 have the right to return.
    As for res. 194, i must seeek help from experts; such as jeff blankford. If he reads this post i hope he’ll explain res. 242, 194, and 181.

    Re: 181 NC says:
    “181 says nothing ab. the matter, and reference to mit is meaningless for reasons that are well understood, not least because pal’ns rejected it w. much justice”

    I’ve read s’mwhere that res. 181 stipulated that israel must allow return in exchange for its mebership in UN. I need help here. There is more in his today’s mail. But i’ve alread y taken whole hour just to put this much
    And it does not pertain to the right of return. tnx

  39. Richard Oxman said on September 14th, 2009 at 3:36pm #

    I don’t want you to feel badly, Bozh, but I’m having great difficulty understanding the thread of your thoughts too. I requested that you provide Chomsky’s response (as it was written) for good reason, but you’ve explained that you cannot do that in the form that I requested. Fine. I also recommended that you approach him a certain way. To avoid some of what you encountered. I don’t think that you did that judging from what you’ve written above. Fine. Jeffrey is not needed here. His differences with Chomsky are well known. They are no more important at this juncture than asking you to read Chomsky’s latest blah blah on the Palestinians or his old Fateful Triangle. AS FAR AS DOING SOMETHING FOR THE PALESTINIANS, HOWEVER, both you and Jeffrey might consider — should consider, I believe — getting on board with TOSCA.. because regardless of these endless OLD arguments about Noam vis-a-vis the Palestinians… the TOSCA PLAN can do an enormous amount of good for those immissertaed by Israel. The UC System — so “controlled” by the Governor of California, so influenced by him/her — could lead the way in divestment… could lecture re boycott and sanctions… with a national spotlight on her/him. If that’s the way you and/or Jeffrey would like to proceed. Arguments about Noam are beside the point, and draining. Postive action is not. And, besides, I do believe that Chomsky would be on board enthusiastically with a helluva lot of ACTION that would bring a smile to your face, to JB’s face, and, more importantly, to the faces of many Palestinians. Loving best, The Ox

  40. bozh said on September 14th, 2009 at 5:11pm #

    you do not specify which of my statements u cannot understand.
    such as “palestinians were expelled with the aim that they never return and they were barred from returning from day one”.
    Why is this statement not clear to u?

    And u can reread chomsky’s answer and tell me what he meant? Did he not mean that the offspring of the original expellees have no right of return?
    it is clear to me that he allows only those expelees to return who were one or two yrs old in ’48 and now anywhere from 62-90+ yrs old!

    why do u complain ab. not providing u with exact words chomsky used when i did just that? I don’t think u read carefully what i write because some of the people that don’t understand my statements are always the people who disagree with those statements.
    For if u don’t understand them, how can u know that they are wrong. And why all this lectures and complaints? Is it not civil to say that if one does not understand such and such statement or all of the statements and ask the person to rephrase so as to eventually make them clear.

    what is this ab. not understanding the thread? Are u not aware that that represents insult as u posit tacitly the notion that the person u say that to is at sea.

    Look, pal’ns were expelled by violence. They were not allowed to return! And chomsky does not respect that right. The right of return applies also to the offspring and if for no other reason than the fact that they were barred from returning in ’48-49.
    Chomsky’s objection to the return of the descendants wld have never arisen if it wasn’t for the criminal behavior of the christo-talmudic crowd and their deliberate delay of peace treaty so as to steal more land and prevent the return of oldsters and their offspring .

    I do not know much ab tosca. But i know a lot ab. the structure of society in california and other states.
    In short, it is and always had been everywhere a cosa nostra of the patricians and now mutlti-millionaires and billionairs and cosas mias for lower classes.
    If u can create from ab. 95% of californians [each looking for cosa mia] our cosa nostra; such united multitude for free higher education, heatlh care, and the right to be informed, cld face their cosa nostra and make it at least blink.

    If cosas mias, split asunder in hundreds of orgs, movements, personal grievances, causes, etc., remain unchanged, the 10K yrs of plutocratuc rule wld remain.

    Even if u only get 70-80% of californians onside for free higher education, right to be informed, healthcare, etc., and applying massive passive resistance against their cause, things cld finally change for better for all americans.
    One needs the right and the left onside for that. Without support from the right, the left cannot, i think, obtain much.

  41. Richard Oxman said on September 14th, 2009 at 5:58pm #

    You misunderstand Chomsky. You misunderstand me. Both Noam and I are very much in support of everything that would improve the lives of Palestinians, for sure. Differences on particular aspects of their struggle is not a good subject at this point for this outlet at DV. At least I am not interested in discussing the special issues connected with their struggle in detail IF you can say — at this juncture — that you don’t know much about TOSCA. As I pointed out, a successful TOSCA could help the Palestinians immensely. Your pov concerning what is necessary for success in California is neither here nor there if you haven’t read about our planned approach in detail. I’m sorry to have to let go of some of your questions concerning your correspondence with others and the lack of clarity I experienced with you… but, as I pointed out… there is a lot to embrace, to discuss with me… if you are interested in taking some steps in action. In something other than ongoing talk only. Best, Ox

  42. Deadbeat said on September 15th, 2009 at 12:16pm #

    Both Noam and I are very much in support of everything that would improve the lives of Palestinians, for sure.

    One of the best area that will help to improve the lives of the Palestinians is to confront the growing influence of Zionism in the United States. The Left has promoted the “War for Oil” canard in order to deflect from confronting Zionism head on. Chomsky has been an apologist regarding AIPAC and continues to deny that Israel is an apartheid state. In fact in Boston last year he refuted Desmond Tutu characterization that Israel is worse than South Africa.

    Making the American public aware of Zionism growing influence will help to mobilize activist in the U.S. to confront it and it would put enormous pressure to curtail support in the U.S. against Israel which would help the Palestinians.

  43. Richard Oxman said on September 15th, 2009 at 12:49pm #

    “Making the American public aware of Zionism growing influence will help to mobilize activist in the U.S. to confront it and it would put enormous pressure to curtail support in the U.S. against Israel which would help the Palestinians.” Let’s take these words of yours.

    Not that anyone is reading this other than you. Because someone might be reading it, however,… also.

    Like I told you before, if you want to help the Palestinians then help us with TOSCA try to put someone into the position of pushing for boycotts, sanctions and divestment vis-a-vis the UC System in CA. Chomsky is, for all you know, all for the pressure you ask to be applied. If you take the time — as I recommended — to ask him directly what his current position is on all that… then you can learn the truth about it… and then share his missive with us… so that we can all learn along with you. As is stands, you are dredging up OLD stuff., perhaps assuming a lot that’s not the case. Here’s a way to put it all to bed… so that you aren’t involved with this game of “I know how Chomsky stands and I know what’s best for Palestinians, etc.” If Chomsky tells you that he’s for this and that… and it doesn’t converge with your priorities… perhaps we’ll learn WHY. I’m certainly for applying that pressure as per previous entries of mine here… and, as far as I know, so is Noam. If he’s not, I’d like to know why… through your efforts. Please, if you do contact him… do so politely and in a condensed fashion so that we don’t take a chance on having any of the “problems” that Bozh seems to have encountered… or feel as if he’s encountered. And, as a courtesy, tell Noam that you intend to share his response with DVoice readers, something that Bozh didn’t do “directly”… as recommended. Best, Ox P.S. I know for a fact that Chomsky is all for citizens of this country putting pressure on their own government to change the status quo in Israel. The HOW is not as important, I don’t believe, as your decision to join or not join hands in solidarity with TOSCA… or at least to make a simple statement… short… clear… as to why not.

  44. b99 said on September 15th, 2009 at 1:23pm #

    Many years ago, in connection with a research paper on the politics of water in Palestine and Israel, I wrote Chomsky asking for leads (based on a few sentences he had regarding water issues in “The Fateful Triangle”). Chomsky got back to me promptly and with good info.

  45. big bad bozh said on September 15th, 2009 at 1:51pm #

    U are right that i did not copy and paste the chomsky’s fourth reply to my fourth email.
    I tried to do this just now but no success. It cld be the computer. It plays all kinds of tricks on me.

    In any case, wld u please ask him just one question:
    Do you recognize the right of the expellees’ descendants to return to the homes/homeland of their expelled parents or grandparents?

    Wld u also please use the word expellees and not refugees. A refugee takes refuge s’mwhere from danger. An expelled person does not take refuge but goes away because guns pointed at her/him.

    I have been suspecting for 20+ yrs that chomsky was a zionist beacause he was not adequately depicting israeli-palestinian conflict. He was accurate but not adequate.
    To wit: He had, as far as my memory serves, never mentioned the deletereous effect of ‘jewish’ religion on justice/fairness towards pal’ns nor had he mentioned the right of return.

    i also conjecture that 1 ‘jew’ in 10K- 100K rejects all forms of land theft; euphemistically called “zionism” because it is much less elucidating than the term land theft with intent to murder and which cld be understod by even a seven year-old child.

    Richard, u may not understand what i am saying; u often complain that u do not understand me.
    But, if u learned journalism in US, it is no wonder u often don’t understand even simplicities!

  46. Richard Oxman said on September 15th, 2009 at 4:28pm #

    Thanks t b99 for inserting the positive — typical, I find — profile for Noam. Truly, thanks. For Buddy Bozh, I recommend that you not worry about anything we’ve discussed to date, and proceed — w your quite capable self — to send a couple of simple, clear questions Noam’s way. Respect to one and all, Ricardo P.S. Just received some good inquiries about TOSCA from the realm of Orange County. Very happy ’cause that’s a good area for dipping into the minority situation and the labor pool.

  47. B99 said on September 15th, 2009 at 8:01pm #

    Bozh – The proper term would be ‘displaced persons.’

    Richard Oxman is not the only person having difficulty understanding your emails. They are just filled with ideosyncracies that deter full comprehension.

  48. Deadbeat said on September 16th, 2009 at 12:39am #

    I know for a fact that Chomsky is all for citizens of this country putting pressure on their own government to change the status quo in Israel. The HOW is not as important, I don’t believe, as your decision to join or not join hands in solidarity with TOSCA… or at least to make a simple statement… short… clear… as to why not.

    Mr. Oxman’s has been using a fallacy in his argument for TOSCA. The fallacy is know as a false dilemma which is also known as “black & white” thinking. It’s like GWB’s “if you are not with us you are against us”. He has alluded several times in this discussion that those who have criticized TOSCA are essentially obstructionist to taking action. I have enumerate in details my criticism not of TOSCA goals but of TOSCA tactics and strategies. It’s the strategy that I think is dubious.

    One aspect of Mr. Oxman’s strategy is his need to recruit leftist icons who have during the past 30 years have been the real “obstructionist” by misleading the public with their issue framing. Zinn did not support Nader’s 2004 run in a year that was probably the best year for the Left to take real action and build. Norman Soloman, another lefty icon, best represented the “Anybody But Bush” and debated Peter Camajo on the side of not challenging the Democrats. I need not repeat my critique of Noam Chomsky.

    Mr. Oxman will most likely argue that it is all in the past and that looking forward things will be different. We shouldn’t shut out any voices. Clearly these icon do have a reputation and a body followers that will be needed to mobilize others in taking over California.

    Mr. Oxman’s demands the following from Deadbeat that I keep my critique short but that a ridiculous request and an unfortunate defensive tactic that is often deployed by leftists when they are criticized. In fact it requires me to explain — in detail — why I think Mr. Oxman’s proposal is IMO going to fail MISERABLY. The onus is on me to make the argument. And I believed that I have done so.

    Anyone who wishes can read the TOSCA 9-point “manifesto” on Mr. Oxman’s site. I raised question to each individual those points in response to Mr. Oxman’s allegation that I didn’t read his articles. I posted that response to make it clear that I read all the points that he is trying to promote. The biggest problem that I see with TOSCA is how a loosely confederated group of people could possible believe they can use the electoral process and win the governorship where the most organized third party effort in the last 10 years has failed.

    Peter Camajo had a decent showing in 2003 during the recall. Unfortunately the Governator won that election. Apparently Camajo appeal to class conflict was no match to Arnold’s Hollywood appeal. In addition the recall attracted all kind of candidates (like Gary Coleman of “Facts of Life” fame) who seriousness was questionable which made a mockery of the recall.

    However Camejo’s run gave the Green Party additional credibility and momentum heading into 2004. Rather than the left icons supporting a real challenge to the Democrats in the midst of Camejo showing and with the huge motion of the anti-war movement many of those icons decided to embrace the “Anybody But Bush/Safe State” strategy that WEAKEN the Left. Now Mr. Oxman namedrops these same icon and all of a sudden dissident should now assume a different outcome.

    Therefore Mr. Oxman really are asking dissidents to take a leap of faith into believing that his scheme has a chance to work and if you raise pointed questions, concerns or even logical arguments he brands you as an obstructionist or argues that you didn’t read his materials or comprehend his message.

    I think Mr. Oxman should be grateful for vetting his scheme on Dissident Voice in order to get feedback from folks who are knowledgeable about action and strategy. No one is saying not to take action but what is needed is an EFFECTIVE strategy so that when action is taken it will result in a lasting solidarity and real results.

  49. bozh said on September 16th, 2009 at 6:42am #

    In Noam Chomsky, interviewed by david barsamian, ’92, NC says the following on p. 30:
    For example, after the last election, there was an article in one of the major israeli journals by a very good journalist named yoav karni. The headline of the article was actually a pun. It reads in hebrew “jewish money buys the vote”, but it cld be also read as “Jewish money buys everything” That was the headline. Then came a report of a speech by Thomas Dine, head of israeli lobbing group in washington, AIPAC, in which he just gloated over the successes of the Jewish political lobby, the israeli political lobby here, in controlling the American congressional elections.
    He said that the major achievemnet was to eliminate senator charles Percy, who was too critical of israel. He went onto say that they felt that thru electoral victories they had Congress in their pocket until 2000.

    what wld NC say now ab. degree of control of pols by israeli lobby? Anyone know? thanks

  50. Max Shields said on September 16th, 2009 at 7:41am #

    What concerns me, and perhaps there is some merit to this outcry about Chomsky’s influence, is the extent to which this back and forth goes with what would “NC” say/think?

    I find this immature and child-like to ask Chomsky for what he “thinks” as if one does not have the capacity for thinking for oneself.

  51. Richard Oxman said on September 16th, 2009 at 7:56am #

    I love Peter Camejo. For me, he is not dead, he will always live. But he took on Arnie on the same terms that marginalized parties have always taken on the powers that be. With an approach that demanded that he try to match his major party opposition in terms of money and recruitment and access to the media. TOSCA — if you read more than the 9 point biz you highlighted — clearly delineates on oxtogrind that it will not be based on that three-prong guaranteed failure of an approach. The one that the Green Party imposes on all its candidates. TOSCA is unlikely to win in the winner-take–all setup we have. However, the only chance opposition to the major parties has is to embrace a different approach. I won’t go over ALL the stuff that’s written down on oxtogrind re strategy/tactics, but I will point out that we intend to go in the back door, not through the front door where the major parties are blocking the entry way. For instance, we’re going to have twelve or thirteen people running on our ticket. Only one working figurehead to vote for, of course, but maybe a dozen OTHERS will be in our mix… all of whom are going to come on board with their individual followings… for the purpose of recruitment. It is one thing for Peter to have dedicated citizens trying to recruit for the Green Party ticket, and quite another to have twelve Peter Camejos from different realms in society with different supporters (a believer in Rev. Wright, a believer in Code Pink, a believer in Mike Davis et al.) all organizing… all of whom have a much more vested interest in the outcome — in their own minds, on a very immediate practical level (Like they themselves will be in on making historic decisons if they win!) — than a dedicated college student or a part-time labor organizer can feel, contribute, etc.

    Just imagine Derrick Jensen, Willie Nelson, Green Day, Dick Gregory et al. all running on our ticket, all appealing to their individual followers, all making announcements at each public appearance… and — much more importantly — getting personal friends to get personal friends one-on-one to create a watershed in history, NOT elect a politician of a given person’s choice. Part of Peter’s baggage — negative baggage — was that… as great a person that he was, all well-intentioned as he was… he was perceived as a contending POLITICIAN.

    The ABB argument in terms of how people finally decide to vote is a valid point, However, we intend to circumvent that likely negative potential by going through an electoral back door, if you will. As far as that silly biz that Deadbeat keeps bring up about ICONS and ABB… that’s something else. If one looks at the list of “icons” at (and not just glance at the 9-point biz), you’ll quickly see that our list of supporters includes very few, if any, of the Norman Soloman variety. Beating the dead horse about Zinn and Chomsky really should be put to bed ’cause it keeps whoever keeps repeating that stuff from taking action. Deadbeat only has so many heartbeats. And if he/she chooses to spend them on trying to argue about perceived past history it removes the possibility that he/she can get on board by embracing and supporting in a proactive way the non-ABB movement that is TOSCA TODAY. Chomsky is NOT on our list, though he has contributed great advice. Zinn, who last time out voted for either Cynthia or Ralph, is on the list. And though I don’t agree with what was his first recommendation for a possible working figurehead candidate for TOSCA… he is open, and certainly flying with the thrust of TOSCA, doing more for our GOAL than Deadbeat.

    Almost every single person on the oxtogrind 336 list would laugh at anyone suggesting ABB thinking. They are quite radical, for the most part, and the majority will be ruling TOSCA decisions, not any CLOSET ABB person who might have snuck in under the radar or who disagrees with the thrust of what the group is about… which really is at the opposite end of the spectrum from ABB… that being wanting to undermine the entire electoral system, the System in general, as it stands.

    And that’s why certain stuff is NOT on oxtogrind. Like the way in which we intend to deal with the inevitable attempt at electoral fraud, a plan in place that was never embraced by the supporters of Peter Camejo.

    Again, write directly to Chomsky, Bozh.

  52. Richard Oxman said on September 16th, 2009 at 8:00am #

    The biz about asking Chomsky, Max, has to do with wanting to put to bed some of the silly accusations which fly about… about what his position is on this and that. No one at DVoice, including me, can definitively nail down his positions… like he can… with a simple missive, politely and clearly sent his way. Best, Ox

  53. bozh said on September 16th, 2009 at 11:09am #

    max, with respect,
    there was a point in why i want to know what NC says now about AIPAK. That was a sincere quest for knowledge about the relationship btwn congress and AIPAC and to what degree was then and now AIPAC an israeli lobby?
    i have an opinion; however opinion is not knowledge. We all have capacity to think. But i can assure u, max, i have no capacity or opportunity to find all the facts that pertain to congress-aipak gangsters’ robbery in expalestine.
    I call them gangsters not because i think so but because i know it!

    Max, i did not ask what NC thinks ab. anything, i asked if anyone knew what NC knows now about congress-aipac relationship.
    Please read more carefully and don’t go from memory! tnx

  54. bozh said on September 16th, 2009 at 2:07pm #

    richard, with respect
    u know that i did not say: richard, tell me what NC knows-says or thinks. And i especially don’t care that much what some people think and what ‘zionists’ think even less so, or next to zero.

    As i have said, NC has described situation in ME until ca ’02 in the manner of many fierce antitheft-of-land people” .

    Btw, chomsky does not want to correspond with me any longer. And who can blame him when so many ‘jews’ go ballistic over the facts i posit.
    Yes, it seems that i have upset him.
    I have asked him only two questions with economy of words. He wldn’t have upset self over the question of the right to return if he valued and recognized that right but he does not.