Friday, September 30, 2005


The Death of a Troll

On Melbourne Indymedia, under the headline "fuck you" (submitted by "i am so fucked") is what appears to be the last words of a troll:
this is a big fuck you to everyone

i hate you
i hate me
you think I am a loser troll
i will take some substances
and die
i will not bother you anymore
just another dead body
for you and your friends to deal with
A relatively large number of follow up comments are divided between "don't kill yourself" and "kill yourself".

One way or the other, Indymedia is probably not good for anyone's mental health.

Thursday, September 29, 2005


Bush to Mother Earth: Bring It On!

I don't know if it's original - most of the good stuff I find on Indymedia isn't. This piece of satire is however terribly good.
WASHINGTON, Sept 28 - In the wake of devastation wrought by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the Bush administration today announced a dramatic shift in national security policy.

“While our attention was focused on fighting evildoers,” said the president. “Our country was attacked by a new enemy, Mother Nature.”

“But from now on America will be prepared,” said Bush. “To you Mother Nature, I say ‘Bring it on!'”

The President announced that he will ask Congress for an additional $200 Billion in military spending for the new 'War on Nature'.
Read it all. If there were more of this sort of thing on Indymedia, I could shut up shop.


Pre-Protest Pilates

NYC Indymedia is carrying photos of the scary sounding "Black Bloc" at the recent 25 September (sorry, S25) protests. I learned some things about the 'anti-authoritarian movement' and bringing on The Revoution.

Apparently the revolution will be brought about by Drawing circles on some trucks,

Protester defacing truck

and writing the word "Fuck" on others.

To avoid injury during the revolution however, protesters should stretch beforehand.

Protesters stretching

Don't forget those revolutionary hamstrings.

Protesters Stretching 2

Protesters with red eyes from a late night planning the revolution, should bring ski-goggles to cover them up.

Make sure your goggles match your revolutionary bandannas. Don't forget your cameras either!

Resistance is puerile. If you think I'm being cruel however, read some of the discussion about what's wrong with the movement.


Nude Protests Against Australia

Via Indymedia Ireland, protesters outside the Australian embassy are boycotting wool.

Apparently they are also boycotting cotton, nylon, hemp and silk - Nude Protesters have converged on the Australian Embassy.

The good news? No photos... Yet.

(Hat tip: Indymedia Ireland Watch)

Update: Via the comments, photos of the protesters appear here.

JIC notes "For once, they seem to be young, attractive protesters." As opposed to say......This.

Update 2: JIC notes further:
Before I posted my comment, I didn't notice the video link on the same page as the photo. Now that I've watched the video, I have to say that not only are the protesters young and attractive, but I bet that most (if not all) of them are professional models.

I doubt they were paid for the appearance as such, but there is a tradition of models appearing in PETA ads and protests to show they 'care', and that they are 'serious, intelligent people', not just empty-headed clotheshorses. Of course, a lot of the time, they do fur shows a few months later...

Tuesday, September 27, 2005


Rachel Corrie Redux

DC Indymedia reports that an anti World-Bank protester was struck by an SUV when attempting to block the road.
Joe Sacco, while working to prevent delegates from attending the World Bank meeting on Sunday, was nearly killed when a motorist drove at speeds over 45 mph with the protester on the hood of the SUV. Sacco was blocking one of four intersections surrounding the Mayflower Hotel- where many important delegates of the World Bank meetings were staying.
At approximately 4:45AM Sunday, September 25, 2005, a collective of approximately 100 activists from around the nation surrounded the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. Multiple affinity groups were able to effectively communicate in order to delay many delegates from easily being transported to the World Bank meeting.

Joe Sacco, of Las Vegas, was standing in the crosswalk at approximately 6:15AM at 17th St. and L when a grey/silver SUV (Washington D.C. plate DW7274) approached the intersection. The motorist came to a full stop about 4 feet away from Sacco. The driver then accelerated and proceeded to hit the activist. Sacco flipped up onto the hood of the vehicle in an attempt to prevent being pulled under and run-over.

The driver, seemingly a private citizen, then drove at high speeds 8 blocks to 9th St. and L. Sacco screamed and pleaded for safety while gripping the windshield wipers for dear life. The man finally came to a stop and let Sacco off the vehicle.
There is now an interesting discussion on the website about what exactly he was doing on the road in the first place and the possible mindset of the driver.
why the fuck are you standing in front of a private citizens vehicle instead of the delegates you were there to target? you reap what you sow.
This should lead to a serious charge such as "Assault with a Deadly Weapon", or maybe "attempted murder."

Realistically, since a political motive was likely involved, it could be considered and act of terrorism under FBI definitions of the term.
Did any of you ever think the ones really are hurting are the citizens of this city who really are the only ones disrupted by your protests. I work two jobs and when all of you come to town Iam often delayed for hours by your silly antics.

Not saying this guy should have been hit, but I can fully understand why it happened.
you preach about a brief inconvenience yet what do you know of the fear that motorist had when surrounded by several people on all sides? would you honestly be concerned for the hood ornament you now have hanging onto your wiperblades or your own safety?

target the people that matter, not some poor soul who is going to work or doing what any normal us citizen is supposed to be doing, abiding by the law. your actions were terroristic to say the least considering your mob numbered in the hundreds. any normal person would fear for their safety.
I can't find any reporting of this incident in the mainstream press.


Profane Placards

DC Indymedia brings us photos of placard writers who really need their mouths washed out.


Protest Photos

One thing Indymedia has always been good at is footage and photos of demonstrations. UK Indymedia is hosting Sights and sounds from stop-the-war demo, London, 24 Sep.

Including this:

The article's author writes:
One organisation I hadn’t come across before was Hizb ut-Tahrir, which describes itself as “a global Islamic political party working against western imperialists and their proxies in the form of Arab and Muslim dictators”. It is already defined as “terrorist” in many of the Arab and Muslim countries run by western-supported dictators, and Tony Blair recently announced that he planned to proscribe the party in the UK.

From chatting to one of their activists for a while, and from reading their leaflet, they don’t sound like a terrorist organisation to me, any more than the SWP are.
Their idea of a “Caliphate” across the whole Muslim world, governed according to true Islamic law (not the perverted versions of the Taleban or the Saudi Wahabis) sounds to me much more agreeable than the current arrangement, although my anarchic tendencies aren’t too happy with the need for a “Caliph” to rule the whole thing.
A comment responds:
From the "Draft Constitution by Hizb ut-Tahrir" from their website:

"Those who are guilty of apostasy (murtadd) from Islam are to be executed according to the rule of apostasy, provided they have by themselves renounced Islam. If they are born as non-Muslims, i.e., if they are the sons of apostates, then they are treated as non-Muslims"

"Muslims are entitled to establish political parties to question the rulers and to access the positions of ruling through the Ummah on condition that the parties are based on the ‘Aqeedah of Islam and their adopted rules are aHkaam shar’iyyah; the establishment of such a party does not require a license by the State. Any party not established on the basis of Islam is prohibited."

"Sovereignty belongs to the divine law (shara’) and not to the people."

"Segregation of the sexes is fundamental, they should not meet together except for a need that the shar’ allows or for a purpose the shar’ allows men and women to meet for, such as trading or pilgrimage (Hajj)."

"Women are not allowed to take charge of ruling, thus women cannot hold the positions of Khaleefah mu’aawin, waali, ‘aamil nor to practice any actions of ruling. She is not allowed to be a chief judge, a judge in maHkaamat ul-MuDHalim nor ameer of Jihad."
Lovely. If they don't sound any worse than the Socialist Workers Party as he claimed, I expect that says plenty about that organization as well...

After that, they all kept dancing to Samba music until they'd made their point...


Latest 9/11 Conspiracy...

UK Indymedia demonstrates the low threshold for material on the newswire with the latest 'theory' about why 9/11 happened, and it's a doozy:
There were no Airliners involved in the 9/11 hits.
The whole thing was imagined. As for the eyewitnesses?
And where were the 200+ Israeli spooks and FEMA that morning? I would bet my bottom dollar they were playing their roles as eyewitnesses (and false-evidence planters) at the WTC
Whoops... I'm sure he really meant "Zionists".

Two subsequent comments indicates there is still some intelligent life on the site:
It is disappointing that time is still being spent discussing this issue. I appreciate that there are some still so keen to believe anything other than the reality they will continue to post articles like this to the newswire but I have to question if it is time to introduce a blanket ban on 9/11 fantasies like this. By all means allow new information but simple rehashing of the same theory is hardly helpful. Comments like,

"In fact, the no-planes explanation is the ONLY rational, completely logical explanation there is" are at best stupid and at worst insulting to those who died.
You forgot about the "no-buildings" explanation. I visited New York prior to Sept 11. I have news for you. There weren't any buildings at the site called the World Trade Center. It was just a big hole, and they hadn't even begun to build the buildings yet. This hoax is being perpetrated to make Muslims look bad.
Do you know anyone who worked at the WTC? Of course not. You may have known some people who TOLD you they worked there, bu they are part of the hoax, and you are just another fool for believing them.
They are subsequently dismissed:
Heard the most absurd conspiracy theory? A billionaire caveman with a laptop in Afghanistan and 19 boozy, cocaine-sniffing, ultra-religious Islamic fanatical suicide-hijackers (whoops! at least seven are still alive and well) engineered 9/11 - including the controlled demolitions of three WTC towers !!!

What pathetic plonkers still believe this fairy-tale? The two pathetic plonkers above, apparently. Do they have a brain? Or are they just acting like zomboid sheep? Are they spooks or sheeple?

You decide, dear readers.
Fear the spooky Zomboid sheeple... Thank you UK Indymedia for providing an outlet for this type of thing that the mainstream media simply refuse to publish.

No really...

Monday, September 26, 2005


Another Victory for KAOS

Don Adams, the actor who played Maxwell Smart in Mel Brooks and Buck Henry's "Get Smart" died today.

Tragically, he was killed while fighting elephants in Africa.
Would you believe trampled by elephants?
Well how about shot by an elephant hunter?
Okay... Lymphoma related Lung failure.

Adams, who played Agent 86 died at the age of 82. Missed it by that much...

Saturday, September 24, 2005


The World Can't Wait... Well, maybe a little...

New Orleans Indymedia (which I still would have thought had better things to do) is reporting on a group calling itself World Can't Wait.

Apparently, the "World Can't Wait" to "drive out the Bush regime".

Well, not exactly. In fact, the world can wait until 2 November 2005. That's when, according to the website:
on November 2, the first anniversary of Bush’s “re-election”, we will take the first major step in this by organizing a truly massive day of resistance all over this country. People everywhere will walk out of school, they will take off work, they will come to the downtowns and town squares and set out from there, going through the streets and calling on many more to JOIN US. They will repudiate this criminal regime, making a powerful statement: “NO! THIS REGIME DOES NOT REPRESENT US! AND WE WILL DRIVE IT OUT!

November 2 must be a massive and public proclamation that WE REFUSE TO BE RULED IN THIS WAY. November 2 must call out to the tens of millions more who are now agonizing and disgusted. November 2 will be the beginning – a giant first step in forcing Bush to step down, and a powerful announcement that we will not stop until he does so – and it will join with and give support and heart to people all over the globe who so urgently need and want this regime to be stopped.

This will not be easy. If we speak the truth, they will try to silence us. If we act, they will try to stop us. But we speak for the majority, here and around the world, and as we get this going we are going to reach out to the people who have been so badly fooled by Bush and we are NOT going to stop.

The point is this: history is full of examples where people who had right on their side fought against tremendous odds and were victorious. And it is also full of examples of people passively hoping to wait it out, only to get swallowed up by a horror beyond what they ever imagined. The future is unwritten. WHICH ONE WE GET IS UP TO US.
In other words, they're going to march and probably break stuff. I'm sure that'll show everyone!
I'm also unsure who exactly they mean when they refer to "people all over the globe who so urgently need and want this regime to be stopped". Saddam? Or Osama?

Whilst the page insists:"Starting now, the city starts buzzing" it's altogether unclear what exactly is planned. The "Mobilize" page is calling for ideas to be discussed at the "National Organizers Meeting in NYC" (three weeks ago actually) and otherwise makes vague references to a whole lot of students walking out of class (as if that ever required a worthwhile excuse).

The "Frequently Asked Questions" page also lists nothing more than "Coming soon". I guess the world will have to wait after all!

Friday, September 23, 2005


Bloody Mossad

It seems Faruque Ahmed gets around based on this posting on UK Indymedia.
Mossad in Iraq, since the Zionised American Terrorism! Do you know anything about it? If so, please write.
And they did...

Proving once again that nothing is unfit for UK Indymedia, comes this:
It wasnt a hurricane.

Did you actually see the hurricane? all you saw was the debris..

The angle and speed it was travelling couldn't of been a hurricane.

Are you going to take the word of government officials ?
You believe everything the government tells you ! haha sucker.

I have one word for you, MOSSAD

Further down, subsequent to reported claims (CNN) on a Web site frequently used by al-Qaida, that they were responsible for the massive storm that devastated the city comes the terrorist put-down of the year:
Is this a joke or what? If al qaeda was praying for an attack,you would have thought that washington/nyc would have been the first choice....maybe allah needs practice with his aiming skills...


Lessons from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita

According to a comment on Houston Indymedia:
We are a heartless society and we are getting what we deserve. May nature finish the lot of us off.
Have a nice day.

Elsewhere on Houston Indymedia, taking a break from the usual material about secret Government airborne chemtrails comes this advice on how to stop Hurricane Rita:
Because Rita is an act of man and not an act of God, it can be easily affected by prayerful intent.

I don't care if anyone thinks I'm crazy for posting this. [No! -ed] I want you to know that it is especially possible to affect the weather with things like prayer and intent when they are not part of the natural order of things, like chemtrails and HAARP-generated hurricanes. As just one ordinary person, I can attest that I have time and time again been able to clear skies muddied over with chemtrails, using prayerful intent. [And a bit of wind -ed] You really can affect the path and severity of this hurricane. Please try. What do you have to lose?
Erm...Your mind? Sorry, too late. Not to worry...

You can do it!


Damned if you do...

Houston Indymedia is reporting on President Bush's Visit to Texas to inspect preparations for the storm.

From the Reuters article:
US President George W. Bush, criticised for a slow federal response to Hurricane Katrina, will visit Texas tomorrow to get a first-hand look at emergency preparations for Hurricane Rita.
Indymedia commentary:
Asked how Mr Bush's presence would help the state prepare for the storm, Mr McClellan refused to admit the blatantly political purpose of the trip that will cause further delays.
Follow the logic here... In other words, whether Bush goes or doesn't go, he's wrong.




On Houston Indymedia comes one of the more sensible observations of the year...

In response to:
The World Can't Wait--Drive Out the Bush Regime says, "RESCUE, NOT REPRESSION!" Millions of people are outraged at the callous disregard for the lives of hundreds of thousands of especially Black and poor people. One more reason this criminal Bush Regime's gotta go.
comes this:
Yea the world cant wait.......which is why this circus is Nov 2 and not this weekend
The accolades follow:
Congrats...for being the first person to ever write an intelligent statement on this pathetic website. The world can't get rid of a president that is guilty of fighting religous maniacs and committing billions and billions of dollars rebuilding the poorest part of the US after a natural diasaster. I understand that most of you have no concept of how economics or government actually work; but why would a racist give more money to AIDS research in Africa than all other nations put together?But oh well the world can't wait. I guess it can for at least 5-6 weeks. What a poor response to an emergency!


Look out... Nazis!

Sydney Indymedia is reporting that Perth Indymedia received a legal notice from someone representing Centrelink - an Australian government agency.

It mainly concerned the modification of Centrelink's logo to resemble a Swastika (follow the link if you care, I'm not going to host it). Centrelink (quite rightly) took offence to this and instructed their lawyers accordingly.
We understand Mr Pickett's comment is accompanied by two images that are fashioned in the shape of Nazi Swastikas.
The image of most concern is the Centrelink logo that has been reworked to resemble a Swastika, thereby making
the suggestion that Centrelink is associated with or supports the practices and objectives of the Nazi regime.
Centrelink is a service delivery agency of the Commonwealth of Australia established under the Commonwealth
Services Delivery Agency Act 1997.
Centrelink is not and never has been associated with the Nazi regime or fascist ideology; therefore, in accordance
with your Editorial Policy we request that this image is removed from Mr Pickett's comment.
In maximum defensive mode, Indymedia is now (rather provocatively) hosting copies of the images with reference to the legal notice.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005


Weather Prediction

Having previously reported on the disgraceful way Indymedia 'reported' Hurricane Katrina, and with Hurricane Rita heading toward the Texas coast, I want to make a few predictions.

Looking at various sites, I can see Texas has prepared for this in a much better manner than New Orleans. Compare and contrast:

With:New Orleans.

The Texans have been showing how it should be done, well and truly preparing for a major event such as this, well and truly in advance.

I predict, we will hear a mass of arguments from Indymedia suggesting:

1) Texas was taken care of better than Louisiana because that's Bush's home town (blah...and he's Hitler...). Ditto Florida and Jeb Bush.

In other words, if people don't die, it's all Bush's fault as well!

2) We have learned something from Katrina and this facilitated Texas' success (Blacks died so Texans could live...blah)

To this, I say sorry. Despite learning plenty(!) there is no way, no how such a program as Texas' could be prepared, developed, approved and communicated in the time between Katrina and now. Indeed, much of the planning predates George W. Bush and his Father. They did it right, ahead of time. No prize.

Texans are all doing the right thing, by the way from local government, all the way down to citizen responsibility, including the ones that didn't vote for Bush.

3) Texas people are white, only black people got killed in New Orleans....Genocide....Blah....

Don't even know how to answer that other than reminding them that Mayor Nagin was black too...

Good luck Texas! Here it comes...
Indymedia, I'll be watching!

Feel free to leave a comment predicting what they'll say... We'll review in a few weeks and see who came close.

Update: Who was I kidding? I only needed to wait a few hours.


Simon Wiesethal - Still Spining in his Grave (Faster)

Yesterday I reported on Simon Wiesenthal's memory being dishonoured by Indymedia.

It seems Wikipedia is having the same problem according to this newspaper report.
An Australian Jewish group has been angered by the use of an online encyclopedia to attack the memory of Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal, who died yesterday.

The Wikipedia website, a collection of articles that can be freely edited by users, displayed false information about Mr Wiesenthal, claiming he partook in various sex acts in Austria with other men.

"In the 1970's he became involved in gay life when he began spending his free time giving oral sex to older black men", the site read in part this morning. It continued on for several paragraphs.

Wiesenthal, a holocaust survivor who helped track down more than 1000 Nazi war criminals, died in his sleep at home in Vienna yesterday. He was 96.

The Council of Australian Jewry was angered at the posting on the Wikipedia website, which gets about 60 million hits a day, and said it was a blatant attempt to denigrate the memory of Mr Wiesenthal.

"I suppose if you are a former Nazi or sympathiser then it makes sense to try and denigrate the person who is bringing you down," said executive officer with the group, Josh Landis.

"This is abhorrent and shows a lack of respect to his memory."

Israellycool has more.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


Missed Opportunities

George W. Bush has just appointed an apparently unqualified and inappropriate person to the role of head of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency under the Department of Homeland Security.

The conservative/Right-wing/Pro-Bush side of the blogsphere are justifiably furious at what they regard as cronyism, especially after the recent Michael Brown (FEMA) debacle.

You'd think that Indymedia (not exactly known as friends of Bush) would be all over this story like a fat kid over cake. Gloating perhaps? Demanding things? Smashing stuff?

Nope. Instead, looking at DC Indymedia, they are more worried about "Psychotronic Torture" and Government mind control beams. Guys, drive to the shops, buy some more tinfoil and get over it.


Simon Wiesenthal - Spinning in his Grave

The world's most famous Nazi Hunter, Simon Wiesenthal died last night, aged 96. Whilst his death was certainly the end of an era, he has left an indelible legacy in the fight against racism worldwide. Not merely content with tracking down perpetrators of the Holocaust and holding them accountable, Wiesenthal was committed to the human rights of all groups. Anyone who has visited the Museum of Tolerance (a Wiesenthal initiative) would have experienced this first hand.

Anyone who has visited Indymedia on the other hand, will know the battle is far from over. On UK Indymedia, comes these comments:
He is dead and I won't cry on him nor on the pseudo six millions of holocaust victims.
This man, and his organisation, supported every racist war crime committed by the so-called state of Israel. Indeed, I would list the "Simon Wiesenthal Center" as the one of the most significant racist organisations on this planet.

It is one of the greatest sadnesses that out of the terrible terrible crimes of WW2 (committed by all major sides, especially the Germans, Japanese, Americans, and British), no lasting understanding or desire for a better, fairer, more moral world arose.

A significant part of the blame for this failure can be placed on the shoulders of those that fought for 'racial' and 'national' power post WW2, namely the Americans, the USSR, and the zionists and their supporters.
Yes. It would have been so much easier had the Nazis simply won.

Well done Indymedia... Well done.
RIP Simon Wiesenthal.

Sunday, September 18, 2005


Attention Blacks!

Bush has declared war on you.

Or at least that's what I gather from This article on New Orleans Indymedia.
Bush has declared war on black people in New Orleans

I did, and could find no further reference to this outrageous suggestion in the remainder of the article. Nothing. Meanwhile, in the comments:
why should people be left in refugee camps begging for money while the majority of the voting public in your country spent hundreds of billions of dollars acting out genocide on Muslims?
Muslims better watch out as well! Genocide's about... But don't worry...
Bush has declared war on black people in New Orleans
Bush has declared war on black people in New Orleans
Bush has declared war on black people in New Orleans

the most representative headline reguarding the BUSH regime's stance towards a tragic disaster in a %70+ percent black community!!!

Gosh! Of course he deserved a bit of resistance... I mean he wanted to:
EXTERMINATE THE STARVING [Witness the Neo-Con Daleks - ed] "
All this from a single page on New Orleans Indymedia.


Antisemitism Editorial License

One of the countless and disproportionately anti-Israel articles on the excreable BC Indymedia is Sharon: Palestinians must show their desire for peace.

Apparently, this is based on an article in Israeli newspaper, Ha'aretz. I say this as, after the opening paragraph, obviously written by an anti-Israel provocateur, comes this:
Sharon: Palestinians must show their desire for peace
By Aluf Benn, Haaretz Correspondent, and Haaretz Service
A pretty clear byline if ever I saw one.

Subsequently however, there were casual observations inserted into the Ha'aretz text:
"The right of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel does not mean disregarding the rights of others in the land," Sharon said.

(Um, excuse me? What was that?)

"After more than 57 consecutive years of war and terror which did not stop the development of the State of Israel (Actually, it facilitated its creation ...); after all this - our heart's desire was and remains to achieve peace with our neighbors."
Note the absence of any formatting to indicate it was an 'editorial' addition not attributed to the claimed author.

From the sublime to the ridiculous (or antisemitic to downright filth if you prefer) the 'second half' of the article is a series of "examples" of Israeli militancy, in order to discredit the speech by Ariel Sharon, as actualy reported by Ha'aretz. This included:
5. "When we have settled the land, all the Arabs will be able to do about it will be to scurry around like drugged cockroaches in a bottle." Raphael Eitan, Chief of Staff of the Israeli Defence Forces, New York Times, 14 April 1983.

24. "One million Arabs are not worth a Jewish fingernail." -- Rabbi Yaacov Perrin, Feb. 27, 1994 [Source: N.Y. Times, Feb. 28, 1994, p. 1]
Amongst others.

These are in fact fabrications, and searching for them will yield only two things. Antisemitic websites, both far-right and Arab, and websites documenting antisemitism. See here for a good example of the latter that notes:
Neither of these quotations appeared in The New York Times on the date cited by Ms. Sobh. They do appear on a number of anti-Israel and anti-Semitic web sites.
A subsequent comment on that page observes:
Its an old tactic - actually developed by the NKVD (early version of the KGB); write an article in which purports to quote sources which are considered the time a correction (if any) is actually made, its too late; now the false quote is implanted - eg, this article here falsely guoting the NY Times...

That there is virulent Antisemitism on Indymedia (especially BC Indymedia) comes as no great surprise. Viewing the tactics of these pond scum however is an eye opener.

It's also interesting to note how the various versions of the listings of such quotes (including on anti-semitic article entitled "Ariel Sharon's Book of Bedtime Verses" (sorry, no links to scum today)) change spelling and minor points as each example is debunked.

The above article pointed out the obvious fraud of statements allegedly made in 1950 about "the Palestinians" despite the term "Palestinian" not being widely used until the late sixties. Now, there are otherwise identical versions of the quote which refer to "Arabs", or include [the Palestinians] as a side-note instead.

Thus, the 'evolution' of antisemitic tactics, helped along massively by Indymedia. Fully attributed to an Israeli newspaper for added 'authenticity'.

Saturday, September 17, 2005


Think Globally, Act Locally (or don't)

You will be as thrilled as Philly Indymedia to know that Philadelphia City Council has Passed a Resolution to Withdraw Troops from Iraq.
The resolution cites the losses of Cindy Sheehan and Celeste Zappala, Gold Star Mothers, who were introduced to city council members at a Thursday morning caucus. The resolution calls on the government for a "rapid with-drawalof United States military personnel from Iraq as expeditiously as possible," and cites the monetary cost of the war to Philadelphia tax payers:

"the funds spent by Philadelphia taxpayers on the war and occupation in Iraq could have provided Head Start for one year for 93,181 Philadelphia children; or medical insurance for one year for 421,271 Philadelphia children; or 12,192 public school teachers for one year in Philadelphia; or 6,334 additional housing units in Philadelphia, according to National Priorities Project."
Then again, the funds spent by Philadelphia taxpayers could be better spent by City Council on local services, charity, deadly infrastructure, trash collection, crime fighting or even local volcanic activity, than getting involved in federal issues and duplicating government.

Or maybe it's George W. Bush's fault that the buses don't run on time...

This has nothing to do with the war by the way, and everything to do with a system of government that means the Whitehouse doesn't set local government policy, so local governments should return the favour and stick to their own job and not get distacted until its done. Across America, it isn't.


Tin Foil Travel

The Register reports:
Those readers who regularly don a tinfoil hat - the only proven protection against black helicopter-borne mind control attack - might have wondered how to fully protect themselves against electromagnetic assault whilst travelling to the mall to pick up some oven-ready pizzas and extra bacofoil.
Ernie's House of Whoop Ass gives us the answer...

Foiled again!

Friday, September 16, 2005


Aussie Nazis and Irish Terrorists

Via the House of Wheels - Australia=Hitler!

Leigh observes:
it's amazing what passes for an opinion piece at Indymedia.
Not really...

Meanwhile, Indymedia Ireland Watch has noted some disturbing material on Ireland Indymedia.

What the hell is wrong with these people? Really!


Amnesty of Intelligence

Trawling through some of the material New Orleans Indymedia is the closest one can get to trawling through the diseased waters of the area without actually being there.

I came across this today. CALL FOR AMNESTY.
On the National Day of Prayer and Remembrance for the victims of Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans’ organizers from national grassroots organization Critical Resistance are demanding amnesty for those arrested during the aftermath of Katrina and for an accounting of what happened to prisoners during the evacuation of New Orleans. “We mourn all the victims of Katrina, including those hidden victims who were locked up in Orleans area jails during the storm and those who have been imprisoned indefinitely in its aftermath,”
On face value, it makes some sense. Whilst we know there was some unforgiveable criminal activity (and I'm not talking about Mayor Nagin) we can also assume there must be some people who were locked up simply for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. We also know there were some people who spent a lot longer in jail than they should have.

But let's see who the organizers of this 'press release' are:
Critical Resistance (CR) is a national grassroots group that fights to end the prison industrial complex (PIC) by challenging the belief that policing, surveillance, imprisonment, and similar forms of control make our communities safer.
It is a political movement made up of "Abolitionists".
Abolitionists recognize that the kinds of wrongdoing we call "crime" do not exist in the same way everywhere and are not "human nature", but rather determined by the societies we live in.
There is some truth in that, and social justice recognizes a link between poverty and crime in some cases. That however, is not what they are about. They are about removing what they call the "Prison Industrial Complex" - and the rest of us call the legal system of police, law-enforcement, courts and prison.

They accept however that even if we lived happily ever after, crime won't dissapear
Similarly, abolitionists do not assume that people will never hurt each other or that people won't cross the boundaries set up by their communities.
So what's their alternative solution?
We do not have all the answers. But, we do know that people in other parts of the world rely on prisons and police far less than the U.S. does, and suffer from far less harm.
Naturally, there is no reference provided to support this theory. South Africa? Nigeria perhaps? Maybe parts of South America where there is no "PIC" (and you can't walk down the street at night). There are practical steps you can take as well:
Instead of calling the police everytime there is a conflict in our neighborhoods, we can establish community forums and mediation practices to deal with harm and conflict.
Try to keep that in mind next time you see someone being raped.

There is a point when well-meaning social justice and sheer insanity cross each other. That nexus seems to exist on Indymedia. Of course the 'PIC' wouldn't need as many resources if said insane persons didn't try so hard to get arrested protesting...

Thursday, September 15, 2005


Palestinian Goatse?

Is it just me, or does This Yahoo! News Photo look strangely familiar?

Palestinian Goatse

If you don't know what I'm referring to, you are lucky. No, I'm not referring to a previous cover of Time Magazine either.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005


Protester to be Deported from Australia

Melbourne Indymedia is back online.


They are currently preoccupied with the case of US Activist Scott Parkin who travelled to Australia for the Forbes protest (past report here and here.

He has since received a "negative assessment" by the Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO - think Aussie CIA) and had his visa revoked. He's on the next plane out of there and protesters are particularly annoyed.

The case has prompted Aussie blogger and friend Leigh from the House of Wheels to ask:
why is he facing deportation? It sickens me that the Government's actions are forcing me to agree with the Socialist Alliance.
Needless to say Leigh's no socialist, however it may not be as straight forward as it first seemed.

Aussie uber-blogger Tim Blair observes:
A spokesman for Labor leader Kim Beazley said last night the Opposition would not oppose Mr Parkin’s deportation, following a briefing by ASIO.
Considering the Opposition's job is to oppose most of whatever the Government tries, this would suggest there is more to Parkin than meets the eye.

Blair also adds:
Australia has long been too soft on so-called “peaceful” protesters who block roads, disrupt lawful businesses, and otherwise impose their will on others. How was Parkin even allowed to come here in the first place?
In other news (literally) Blair has used his time at his paid work (for a magazine) to tell some old jokes with politically correct answers.


Pre-Emptive Looting

DC Indymedia offers An Alternative View of how to prevent a repeat of Hurricane Katrina. Amidst suggestions of arming the poor (to faciliate shooting of police) and stealing buses (much earlier), comes this recommendation:
People Waited Too Long To Loot

It appears that most people who looted waited until they were desperate. This does not make sense. The failure to loot early and effectively deprived many children and older people of needed food, water, clothes, and medicine. Given that those in New Orleans without sufficient income to prepare Hurricane kits had no other option, they should have made plans in advance to steal everything they needed as soon as the shop owners left town. Had families and groups of friends compiled lists of the items that they would have needed and then assigned specific individuals with the task of looting the required stores efficiently, the looting could have been done before the storm actually hit. Food that would have gone bad due to the loss of electricity could have been eaten first, thus saving non-perishable items for later. The net available useful food would have been increased by efficient and early looting. Many lives may have been saved.
No, it's not satire.

Monday, September 12, 2005


Occupy This

New Orleans Indymedia cries Occupation!
Why the news media does not pay attention to the fact that the Administration did not want to save New Orleans otherwise it would have got the pumps working rather than making it a city under siege. Why right from the beginning the Bush administration treated the New Orleans like an enemy to be conquered? A territory to be "secured"? Bush administration went after New Orleans as if it is Somalia or Iraq. They went with Maximum force of armed troops with shot to kill order and instead of food the helpless citizens were faced with armed counter-insurgency units as if they were Taliban. That is why the water changed to sewage and raw sewage mixed with decomposing bodies and household toxic materials transformed into poisonous black contaminated toxic stew that resembles WMD.
Neo-Cons went to secure and pacify the city and not to save it.
Good grief...

Sunday, September 11, 2005


September 11, 2001

This was not the fault of the victims or their Government.

Attack on World Trade Centre by Terrorists

This was a deliberate attack on innocent people and was celebrated as such by the perpetrators.

Man Jumping from WTC terrorist attack

We must never forget. Some seem to have.

Friday, September 09, 2005


And Now... Boobies!

DC Indymedia is carrying material by Breasts Not Bombs who:
have been doing actions here in Northern California under the Banner of Breasts Not Bombs/ Making the world safer for us all.
Except anyone who crashes their car or gags watching them...

This is apparently a freedom of speech thing!
The right to Bare Breasts is protected under the 1st amendment. We will do so at the White House on Monday S26 [26 September for anyone not down with protester calendars -ed] to define what is decent and display signs to define what is indecent.
The issue is soft tissue!

In the lead up to the protest, they are calling for signs:


Boring. But here's the good stuff:
My suggestions:
Bazongas, not bazookas
Hooters, not shooters
Boulders, not Soldiers

Comments are open, let's hear yours... This page may help.

This picture, probably won't.
Breasts not Bombs protester
With thanks to Zombie who has photos of their last protest here.

Thursday, September 08, 2005


Melbourne Offline

Melbourne Indymedia is offline.
The server that hosts Melbourne Indymedia has suffered from a DDOS attack, taking the machine offline. This time around it appears to be politically motivated, though it is unknown if it was specifically directed at Indymedia. We are working on getting the site, along with Adelaide and Aotearoa Indymedias, back online as soon as possible. We ask for your patience.
It is unclear how long this has been the case, or whether the Denial of Service attack is still going. It doesn't give any information as to why the attack is "politically motivated". Whilst this wouldn't surprise me in the slightest, it does seem a little premature in the absence of any evidence as provided.

Maybe someone can clarify, but doesn't a DDOS attack mean the bandwidth to a site is used up and the machine itself wouldn't neccessarily suffer damage, merely overload? I would have thought if they could get a page like that up there, something must be working right...

In any case, the material currently visible is probably an improvement.

Update: Via the comments it is possible Indymedia may have been caught in the crossfire of an attack:
directed at an anti-nazi site that was hosted on the same server as the 3 indymedias down.
If Indymedia and an anti-nazi site were on the same server to begin with, I'm surprised the hard drive didn't tear itself apart long ago.

Update 2: Now back online, the management of Melbourne Indymedia suspect the same motivation. The anti-Nazi site has moved to another server. Obviously the irony was too much...


Forbidden Stupidity

Warning, the next link in this article is to graphic images of deceased and human suffering and is not for the weak of stomach or conscience. To prevent accidental clickage, I have munged the URL. Trust me, you don't need to see it and I only list the address for accountability in my criticism.

New Orleans Indymedia has upped the ante of wackiness with this posting: FEMA Forbids You to View These Images.

The images in question are of the bodies of victims of Hurricane Katrina. The captions to each, read as follows:
FEMA does not want Americans to see the evidence of their genocide against African Americans
FEMA is fascist.
murdered by FEMA
This is then followed by a request to add more snuff:
If there is an image of the dead no [sic] included here, please post it below.
Let's get something straight, whilst the FEMA response was questionable, many of those depicted were obviously victims of the hurricane and flooding itself. How this constitutes "murder" is beyond me. Particularly noting from FEMA's own website:
Some things FEMA DOES NOT do:
  • Physically rescue people or serve as "first-responders" in a disaster – that is the responsibility of local and state police, fire and emergency personnel.

  • Building dams or levees or activating sand-bagging activities – generally the responsibility of local/state officials and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

  • Taking "charge" of recovery effort -- FEMA works jointly with state and local officials.

  • Running temporary shelters or disaster feeding stations – generally the responsibility of such organizations at the American Red Cross or the Salvation Army.

  • Making weather predictions, fly into hurricanes or predict when rivers will surpass flood stage – generally the responsibility of the National Weather Service.

  • Ordering evacuations of communities due to natural disaster – generally the responsibility of state and local officials.

  • Setting building standards or setting zoning regulations – generally the responsibility of local and state official, with suggestions from FEMA.

  • Calling out the National Guard – generally a state responsibility.

Why FEMA "forbids" anything as suggested by the article's title it is not explained, nor would any explanation possibly make sense. Considering however they were also called "fascists" suggests someone has spent too long writing placards for protests and probably inhaled some of the paint fumes at that time.

FEMA needs improvement and certainly deserves criticism. Whilst I disagree with the summary Bush-bashing that has happened, of which this is another symptom, I am not going to give them a free pass. The above however, is just stupid. This is intelligent debate. Obviously it's not on Indymedia.

Whilst many blogs and discussion boards are offering useful advice on where to stay, where to donate money etc. The bulk of New Orleans Indymedia content is continuing to argue this is strategic genocide or bickering over whether stealing TVs (versus food and essentials) counts as looting or liberation.

In fairness, the front page of New Orleans Indymedia seems to be doing good work. That's about where it ends. I wonder how long it will be before the 'usual suspects' work out New Orleans Indymedia editors are too snowed under to hide or delete everything? The whole model of "everything is published before it is reviewed" (instead of the other way around) will buckle again.

I seldom link to articles which are hidden, as this is unfair on the editors who have ostensibly done the right thing. This however is but a taste of things to come and honours the memory of Joe Vialls by suggesting proving the Hurricane was in fact ENMOD - Environmental Modification, or the use of environmental modification as a weapon. Comments in the FEMA post are also pointing to articles suggesting the Levees were actually detonated (just like they know the World Trade Centre was) as part of some covert US Government/Jewish land-grab operation (just like they know the World Trace Centre was).

I hope the looters managed to get some tinfoil as well... They're going to need it.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005


Censoring Reality

Every now and then, I receive a visitor referred from the Wikipedia entry for Indymedia where someone added this blog as an external link.

Reading the entry today, I noticed it had a tag indicating the "Neutrality of this article is disputed". Wikipedia apires toward neutrality on most issues and in many cases achieves it. This is because Wiki articles can be edited or modified after publication by anyone. Contributors usually know this and present both sides of an argument or avoid making one in the first place.

Curious as to the dispute, I followed it to the discussion between editors of the piece. It was a real eye-opener. Given the volatile nature of a Wiki, it may change in real time, so I am quoting significant extracts which may or may not remain after the time of this entry. It started with:
This article has serious NPOV problems and needs to be thoroughly edited. While I sympathize with Indymedia, phrases like "amazing and grand experiment in democracy" are of course unacceptable.
...and completely unjustifiable. Then it comes down to the question of what is claimed to be Indymedia's political approach, versus what it actually is:
"Local IMC collectives are expected to be open and inclusive of individual members of a variety of different local left-wing, right-wing, anarchist and other activist organizations, whether or not these have any overt political labels, so that even those without internet access can participate both in content creation and in content consumption."

This statement is a bit laughable. The local collectives are expected to censor right-wing posts. For example, here's a post by a moderator from the lists:
"We are under near constant attack by enemies from across the political spectrum, including Zionists, Nazis, and especially grassroots rightwingers, who use their own websites to organize coordinated attacks."
Here's another page:
When describe posts they hide, they say "right-wing propaganda or hate speech;"
Now, take a look at all the posts on that article and their bias, then look at the hidden posts:[No longer visible]
All those are listed as "policy violations"
The Wikipedia article constantly states that it is an open system, and while the anyone can post, the posts are STRICTLY moderated in order to keep with the websites' pro far leftist agenda. I think this article needs a little more revision to specifically state what the IMC is for.
I have to agree, having worked with IMC collectives. The open system died quickly in the face of complaints about Neo-Nazis and the like making extensive use of the forum. Furthermore it's never been really obvious to me that IMC people really intended it to ever be anything other than a mouthpiece for leftwing voices, no matter their claims to the contrary.
This last claim should not come as a surprise. Since the very beginning, I have argued that Indymedia has at best failed at what it stated as its aim, at worst was dishonest in what it claimed it was attempting.

It's past this however that it becomes really interesting. Concerning the question of Indymedia representation, comes a complaint as to the suggestion that:
Indymedia lacks representation from any currently Communist nation, or from most Muslim countries away from the Eastern Mediterranean
An argument ensues:
The only nations that I would call Communist right now are North Korea and Cuba. Since that category is so small, why not say that Indymedia lacks representation from Vanuatu while we are at it? Perhaps it would be more appropriate to simply list Indymedia-represented countries in a separate section.
...and then a Communist pipes up with his opinion:
First of all there is no such thing as a communist state, that's a contradiction. And Palestine and other countries have Indymedia's, saying most Muslim countries whatever that means is very selective, most third world countries don't have Indymedia, for obvious reasons.
And what are those "obvious reasons"? Lack of electricity? Can't be. Oppressive regimes that limit free-speech? Surely not... Nope the reason third-world countries don't have Indymedia is because:
The US government has gone to great trouble to try and keep places like Cuba and Muslim countries off the Internet
What an outrageous statement. The Internet, and particularly blogs are at the leading edge of grassroots democratic movements in hitherto oppressive regimes, specifically including Muslim countries (ahem, whatever that means). Witness the Iraqi blog phenomenon - Democracy in Iraq, Healing Iraq or The Mesopotamian just for starters. Cuba doesn't miss out either but if their access is limited, there might be other reasons for it, and I'm sure the Communist contributor to Wikipedia can't imagine what they might be other than America.

Then there are the Iranian dissident bloggers who I reported on and Indymedia completely ignored.

Now I know why. It's all America's fault isn't it. The fact that a Saudi dissident blogger would have their head cut off, must also be an American conspiracy to "keep Muslim countries off the Internet". Sure. Never mind the fact that the Internet is widely available in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Dubai, Egypt...You name it, but no corresponding local Indymedia.

Surely Indymedia could report on fact that Chinese bloggers are locked up (and according to this article, were sold out to the Chinese Goverment by Yahoo). I won't hold my breath they'd even care unless it could be argued that the Chinese Government is really a US/Mossad puppet regime.

It is this double standard of claiming to stand for free speech, and using it to lie, whilst doing nothing to provide or encourage freedom of speech for those who are without, that is the biggest indictment of Indymedia's hypocrisy.

On a final note, despite my comments above about Wikipedia's self-enforcing neutrality, from time to time things will fly under the radar. In discussing Google News' decision to stop indexing Indymedia, the Wiki entry says:
The IMCs' open newswires have generated some controversy. For example, in early May 2003, after receiving numerous complaints about newswire stories that referred to the Israeli military (IDF) as "Zionazi forces" (example) or to Israeli Zionists as "Zionazis" (example), Google decided to stop including some IMCs in Google News searches (many non-English IMCs remained in the search).
It is in fact unclear whether this was the sole reason Google acted responsibly in blacklisting Indymedia, rather than the fact that the remainder of Indymedia could not possibly be considered a reliable news source. Indeed, the above claim evokes images of Jewish control of the media, itself a frequent antisemitic claim on Indymedia which rebukes itself.

It's academic ultimately, as Google News is acting irresponsibly again and indexing Indymedia as a 'news source'. The intent of the author (or a subsequent editor) of the previous paragraph also becomes clear with this note:
There have been complaints and discussion of innumerable other posts, as has been the nature of open publishing from the early usenet to the present. Notably, however, there has been no similar outcry concerning posts of an anti-Muslim, anti-Palestinian or anti-Arab nature, by Google or any other organization.
Yup... It must be those Jews complaining again. The claim is of course manifestly false and unsurprisingly no reference is provided.

This highlights a problem with Wikipedia's noble intention of neturality. Whereas outlandish bias is identified and smacked down, more subtle and in many cases insidious as such, bias (or flat-out BS) can fly under the radar. Remember, the frog lowered into a pot of boiling water will panic immediately. If however it starts in warm water which is slowly heated, it won't even notice until it's too late.

Small, immeasurable and persistant festering bias on certain issues is sometimes as dangerous as outlandish extremism. The smarter extremists have learned this and are often unknowingly assisted by people who believe their BS and echo it.


Another Question for the International Solidarity Movement

As they never responded to my last one, I have another question for the International Solidarity Movement.

Do you mind if they use Caterpillar Bulldozers to rebuild New Orleans?


Eating Corpses for America

Numerous Indymedia sites are reporting that Hurricane Katrina victims are now eating corpses to survive.

Shocked by this I Googled for it and (surprise surprise) found no mention of this in any other media source.

Looking closely, I saw one version on Sydney Indymedia report:
It is reported that hurricane victims in New Orleans have begun eating corpses to survive. Four days after the storm, tens of thousands in New Orleans are dying.
and another version on Bay Area Indymedia report:
It is reported that black hurricane victims in New Orleans have begun eating corpses to survive. Four days after the storm, thousands of blacks in New Orleans are dying like dogs. No-one has come to help them.
Notice the difference? At some point the story changed, the hungry cannibals became black and it was predominantly blacks who were dying (this time like dogs).

Honestly... Until now, if you read Indymedia you'd think only George W. Bush and Ariel Sharon ate babies. Now we know it's thousands of (potentially black) people! Scary stuff indeed...

Gee I wonder why the rest of the media hasn't picked up on this scoop?

I now learn it was originally written in the Huffington Post here where it has since been retracted as "unsubstantiated". Which is a nice way of saying "utter bullshit".

It will be interesting to see how the story continues to evolve on Indymedia... It certainly will!

Monday, September 05, 2005


The Protester's Thesaurus

Sydney Indymedia has a debrief of the recent 30 April protest outside the Forbes Conference whose violence I previously reported.

From the article:
Since September 11 2001 the movement against neo-liberalism in Australia has been in steady decline, unable to develop a coherent analysis and praxis under this new regime of power that could facilitate the development of large mobilisations against it.
In case you didn't understand - a translation by way of subsequent comment:
Why were the protest banners talking about Refugees, IR Reforms, and VSU? The CEOs wouldnt know anything about thse let alone affect them."
Seem that the protest was the usual 'anti-everything' stuff, whether relevant or not, just another excuse to spend time chanting, with no real aim or outcome. Good way to spend a few days, huh? What's next? Protest at the Coles Myer AGM about QANTAS job cuts?
There were some great moments; the march was very lively, loud and energetic with sounds systems, a samba band and lots of noise, and the spontaneous deconstruction of the heavily fortified concrete and steel fence was quite inspiring.
Translation: Spontaneous deconstruction - the deliberate smashing down of a fence.
Breaching what appeared to be an impenetrable barrier was a great confidence boost to the crowd as was the commitment to engage in active disobedience and the refusal to submit to state authority.
Translation: The crowd were both planning and encouraged to fight with Police.
It sent a message that the elite should indeed be fearful and take us into account as much as they did in planning for the conference. We were a significant thorn in their side, making Forbes move the opening dinner, forcing them to justify their handouts from the NSW government and massive police spending, making corporate power an issue, demonstrating that there was opposition to it and raining on their PR parade.
Translation: The "Elite" weren't even present to hear the protesters' message and any police expense was justified by criminal behaviour.At least their proud of themselves. Now they are planning the next one:
The question needs to be continually asked however, how useful are these protests? What are we setting out to achieve?
An excellent question, as yet unanswered.
The A30 actions brought activists together from around the country and hopefully built relationships that will be ongoing and can serve as a basis for ongoing campaigns.
Campaigns against what exactly?
It also kept the issue of unfettered corporate power on the political agenda, something that can be built on.
How about building a point?
People have already begun talking about the possibilities of counter actions to the G20 in Melbourne next year. These however will be as limited as the actions against Forbes if daily struggles and campaigns are not built. Post S11 the movement shifted into an ideological abstraction and created something known as the “anti-capitalist activist”, completely removed from the daily struggles that created the movement in the first place. If future actions are to be successful at all activity must move into the everyday and create ongoing laboratories of resistance that build roots, skills and construct possibilities in the here and now.
Great. One question: What the hell are you actually protesting? A final comment justifies the common theme of all of the protest issues raised by the earlier comment:
Why not they're all in it together robing the poor for the rich.
Ah! Something about what the poor are wearing out of the shower. Those bastards!

Last word on the protest has to go to some of the comments on the original Sydney Indymedia page:
You are all so boring. No War, Free the Refugees, Fascist Pigs, blah blah blah blah. Come on which cause is it? You wouldn't even know yourselves.

Sad to see our universities are still producing brainwashed dope smoking hypercritical spoilt brat lefties.
Way to sock it to the 'super-rich', you knocked down a fence! Take that, imperialist aggressor aluminum-wire societal barrier! How much did that fence COST? Steve Forbes' empire will take years to recover from that blow struck in freedom's name! I assume it was HIS fence, right? Oh it was public property? So it was MY fence? Thanks alot, you wankers.
Until next time...

Sunday, September 04, 2005


The Nastiness of Indymedia

Via David Rolfe's blog, The Nastiness of Indymedia.
One of the aspects of the Internet that gets far less coverage than it should is the way it allows anyone to set up a news organization, regardless of budget or government approval. Given the levels of spin that large news outlets put on the news you'd have thought that a open publishing collective of individuals would provide a refreshing and broad range of alternative viewpoints and different angles. When it comes to Indymedia you couldn't be more wrong if you tried...
After providing evidence to support his argument, he observes:
It's just as well the gobshites behind Indymedia haven't got any money, because if they did they'd be about to lose it all in a libel lawsuit.
Which is an interesting way of noting a lack of accountability that occurs when you've got nothing to lose - you tend not to care. Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to what I've been saying for a very long time...


Alleged Lunatic: I can't handle Indymedia

Further to my recent comments on censorship, Indymedia Ireland Watch has pointed me to this article by Kirsten Anderberg which announces she is fed up with Indymedia.
When you submit comments about articles to the mainstream press, they are called "letters to the editor." You need to provide your name, address, and often a contact phone number, to submit a letter to the editor to most publications. An effort is made to verify the claimed author is the actual author. If the identity of the person writing the letter to the editor cannot be verified, then the letter will not go into print. As a person who has submitted many a letter to the editor, I always hated jumping through those hoops, and thought taking such precautions just to print a letter to the editor was extreme and stupid. But now that I am a writer/columnist, I am starting to see this differently.

As I said, at first I thought the IMC's open comment areas were progressive and the rigorous verification process for normal letters to the editor in mainstream press was excessive. Now I am shifting to the exact opposite point of view. Now I think that the writers of comments to my articles need to be identified. Why? Because posters will say outrageous things behind the veil of anonymity. They will slander me. They will divisively reinterpret my articles to their own agendas, trying to put words into my mouth. They will try to flamebait as well. Most of these things would not be occurring in the comment areas after my articles on IndyMedia if these posters could not be anonymous.

After giving IndyMedia a fair shot, I am through with it. It may be fine for announcements of events, but for op/ed and analysis pieces, it is more hassle than it is worth for me. I will work for 5 solid hours on an article only to have it shot to hell my 5 anonymous posters within an hour of posting it.
Regular readers will recall Kirsten Anderberg was the same woman who last week gave the world this: Genocide in New Orleans. Not exactly a sane, rational or reasonable argument and yet even for her, Indymedia is too hopeless. Wow!
Putting writing out there for the public to see does not mean I am now a punching bag for any idiot in the passing. To regain integrity and respect, I feel I must quit allowing myself to enter the IMC boxing ring. I do not want to box it out with every article there. I would prefer to write the article, then move on to the next article. I would prefer to write and be respected for my articles, not dread every article due to anticipated disrespect, which most oft times does manifest in one form or another on the IMCs.
On a side note, whilst her article is undated, it appears on other websites as early as 2004. It's certainly possible someone else reprinted it without permission like so much other material on Indymedia. If however she announced her intention to ignore Indymedia then, why is she back on Friday, Sep. 02, 2005?

Her article concerning letters to the editor versus unmoderated comment is largely reasonable and I note I have written her off based only on her most recent article and not read her prior work. She ignores however that no one can reasonably blame her personally for the insane comments which follows her pieces. Merely the content itself, which was in the latest example, simply appalling. Sorry.

After her most recent comments concerning New Orleans, for Anderberg to "regain integrity and respect" will require a lot more than simply boycotting Indymedia.


The C Word

Many people have requested or suggested that Indymedia exercise editorial control over various libellous, racist or offensive material which populates so much of it. These requests are either of a general nature, by people who wish Indymedia well but identify a critical failure to act responsibly, or are a response to a specific posting which the respondent has clearly identified as untrue, offensive etc.

They will also recall a response that in many cases amounts to "no way, that would be censorship and censorship must be avoided". I have previously pointed out the "censorship chip on their shoulders".

As a result of this failure to differentiate between censorship and responsible editing, many Indymedia sites who follow this line tend to have the editorial quality of the back of a toilet door in a bad neighbourhood.

Evil Pundit has linked to my exposure of the disgraceful trash on New Orleans Indymedia. He has also pointed out that the site is censoring comments to that post. In an email, he writes:
I posted a reply which didn't appear. Also, two posts were headlined "racist" -- probably by the editor -- and today they have vanished.
Reading Evil Pundit's blog suggests he is not exactly coming from the same angle as most of the whackos whose material is hidden being too bad even for Indymedia.

But gee, considering what they do allow on the site, I do wish they'd be more consistent...

Friday, September 02, 2005


Genocide in New Orleans

The victims of Hurricane Katrina are on everyone's mind and in everyone's prayers. Over on New Orleans Indymedia:
I was seriously hoping that I would not have to write this article
But you did didn't you...

A disgraceful article on New Orleans Indymedia, Genocide in New Orleans argues (before the bodies are even cold) that
Regardless of whether the deaths en masse of poor black folks in New Orleans is due to neglect or maliciousness, the end result is constructively a genocide on poor blacks in America, right now, in 2005. The lack of aid to New Orleans at this late hour (7 pm, Sept. 1) is not explicable. I have only one explanation that I can muster up. And that explanation is classism and racism.
It wouldn't have anything to do with flood waters, lack of roads or armed looters. No way.

You can probably guess whose fault it really is... Subsequent comments by the author:
APparently the US Gov WANTS poor black people DEAD in N.O.
The conspiracies get even wackier:
not helping is the easiest way to let all these people die without violating the humanrights. racism undercover!
If Joe Vialls were still alive he'd surely claim the US and Jews actually caused the hurricane as well.

Why does all this sound vaguely familiar? Oh that's right, because after the Asian Tsunami, while most people offered money or assistance, Indymedia's contribution was smugly pointing out it was also part of a greater conspiracy.

Those who are complaining the loudest about capitalism will naturally have donated exactly zero to the victims.

An utter disgrace.


A Picture Speaks a Thousand Protesters

After recent violent protests, Sydney Indymedia reports on further 'actions':
In a series of rolling actions by A30 Anti-War protestors, all branches of the ANZ Bank in the Sydney CBD have been forced to close...
Indymedia readers are beside themselves:
Fantastic action guys. clear message, effective and great organisation. you should be pround of yourselves.

Yes. Well, the House of Wheels reports:
Huge turnout, there. Huge. That's about a fifth of the size of my 19th birthday party.
Tim Blair even has a picture:

You decide.

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