20 December 2006

Blessed be the season

Yule Tidings to all. We'll be celebrating the evening of 22 Dec 2006, campfire and music, bbq and laughter...just my wife and me , with the 4 kittens of course. The sun will cease its southward course and each day will be longer. Brighter days ahead for the earth and all who inhabit her. May we truly practice peace and justice...may we please fight global poverty, hunger and dis-ease...may corporations lose their status as persons...and may persons lose their status as resources...and may the earth and all her bounty be seen as something more sustainable than commodity. May all the world's creatures be allowed to live...without fear of extinction. May honesty and compassion reign. Our door is open, our fire is prepared. Yule Tidings.

15 December 2006

The US response to Chavez

I was in Nicaragua during the contra wars...early on the Sandinistas were totally supported by the people, with the exception of the wealthy class who owned most of the land and power under Somoza...Good things happened...medical care was taken to everyone, literacy jumped from 30% to nearly 90% quickly...super large fincas were divided up, land co-operatives were started, housing was being built...sustainable agriculture was being taught...then, Reagan took office...with a new doctrine...which was to support the somozistas...the ruling class who had been toppled by the people. The US supplied arms to the 'contras' made up of somoza's former national army (who had ruthlessly tortured and killed so many under somoza)...the US mined the harbors of Nicaragua and enforced an embargo of goods going to and coming from the country. The sandinistas, who were an opposition party to the communists in Nicaragua, were thrown into the Soviet sphere of influence...because it was out of the reach of Reagan's embargo. It became a bloody war...Nicaragua became poorer than Haiti for a time. Bush I offered money to the people of Nicaragua if they voted out the sandinistas. A confederation of 11 parties in Nicaragua, including the communist party, known as UNO...won. The US pulled the mines and stopped funding the contras. Peace through intimidation. *** We alienated Ho Chi Minh the same way. He was our ally during WWII against the japanese, wrote a constitution for VietNam patterned after the US constitution...he admired the US so much. After WWII a decision was made to not give VietNam the autonomy that was promised...but to allow France to rebuild lost prestige by keeping VietNam as a colony. Needless to say, Ho was not laughing... *** We can search the world over and find similar cases in other countries. The oligarchs or colonial powers are tossed out by a populist government who institutes land reforms and challenges corporate globalism...and crony capitalism...corporatism gets their crony militaries to put the squeeze on...the country under siege becomes militaristic and nobody is safe. The people become trapped in the vice. *** Will this be the case in Venezuela...and in South America by extension? There are many 'leftist' governments rising up against globalism in the south. Fortunately for them right now, the Bush administration has bit off a bit more than they know how to chew.

The River

upstream from white sand beaches are hamlets, paddies and canyons bombshells unexploded, cratered land, cratered faces  mangled extremities...