Archive for August, 2013

Many young people diagnosed with mental disorders have acted on their beliefs in ways that threaten authorities…


…Many young people diagnosed with mental disorders are essentially anarchists who have the bad luck of being misidentified by mental health professionals, who 1) are ignorant of the social philosophy of anarchism; 2) embrace, often without political consciousness, its opposite ideology of hierarchism; and 3) confuse the signs of anarchism with symptoms of mental illness.

The mass media equates anarchism with chaos and violence. However, the social philosophy of anarchism rejects authoritarian government, opposes coercion, strives for greatest freedom, works toward “mutual aid” and voluntary cooperation, and maintains that people organizing themselves without hierarchies creates the most satisfying social arrangement. Many anarchists adhere to the principle of nonviolence (though the question of violence has historically divided anarchists in their battle to eliminate authoritarianism). Nonviolent anarchists have energized the Occupy movement and other struggles for economic justice and freedom...writes psychologist Bruce e Levine…

::: this piece continues in full @ AlterNet…just click here :::



Yesterday, the Greens stepped forward with their position on mental health, calling on more sessions of psychological care to be made available to those who need them….

…Earlier today, the Chair of the Australian Mental Health Commission (AMHC) and the Chair of the Mental Health Council of Australia both called on our politicians to recognise the unspoken need for urgent reform. As Professor Allan Fels said in his statement, “This deafening silence on mental health cannot be justified”.

The ‘Alliance for Better Access’ is recognised by the major parties as a stakeholder on this significant issue of public concern, but right now we need all sides of politics to tell us what they intend to do ahead of the election. Join us in calling for policy reform. Tell our politicians that mental health matters to you leading up to the election.

You can find out how this issue is developing at and have your say.

Please spread the word. Every voice makes a difference!

Dr Ben Mullings, Alliance for Better Access


Prime Ministers reflect our national values, and have the power to change them radically. Does what Tony Abbott says matter? Well, in just a few days he wants to be speaking for all of us. That’s why GetUp members are launching this ad. Will you be part of it?

“If you stand for clean energy, for refugees, for equal love, for helping single parents and their children – then you stand with us.”

27/08/13  – greens release Quality mental health care for all Australians…

We know that 45% of Australians will experience mental ill-health at some stage in their lives. That’s why we need a strong mental health system to respond to the needs of Australians who are negotiating the challenges of mental illness. 

The Greens care about people. That’s why we will invest $547.4 million in a robust, people-focused mental health plan which improves access to quality mental health services and focuses on helping people to live full, healthy lives.

The key features of this policy are:

  • An investment of $150 million over three years to establish a National Institute for Mental Illness Research;
  • Increasing funding for the Mental Health Nurse Incentive Program by $70 million per year;
  • Reinstating the option of six extra sessions of psychological treatment in exceptional circumstances under the Better Access initiative, investing $141.6 million over 3 years;
  • Re-establishing the NGO Capacity Grants Program and providing grants of up to $50,000 to mental health NGOs, costing $7.5 million; and
  • Establishing a National Suicide Prevention Campaign and improving the collection of data relating to suicide with an investment of $38.3 million over 3 years.

We know that mental health policy cuts through politics to the very heart of our nation’s wellbeing.

Australians need a strong and compassionate mental health system – it makes good economic sense and protects some of our most vulnerable Australians.

We’re committed to supporting people with mental illness to live full and healthy lives.

The Greens are standing up for better access to quality mental health care for all Australians.

You can read more about the Greens’ plan for quality mental health care here.

The Australian Greens said today (26/08/13)  that Tony Abbott is signalling his intention to dismantle Australia’s world class network of marine parks if the Coalition wins the election:

“The signs are clear that the Coalition are intent on dismantling our network of marine parks, effectively wiping out 10 years’ worth of work,” Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens marine spokesperson said today.

“Yet again we see the Coalition actively undermining the science and consultation that has gone into Australia’s marine parks. The Coalition are part of an industry scare campaign and are putting our fisheries and communities at risk. We all know that our fish stocks are under incredible pressure, and new threats like ocean warming due to climate change need to be faced head-on.”The Greens in balance of power in the Senate would block Coalition efforts to dump the current management plans.

“It has never been more important to put Greens in the Senate and protect Australia’s marine environment into the future,” Senator Siewert concluded.

The botoxed, far-right narcissist and obedient Murdoch minion, ‘Liberal leader’ tony abbott, shares his master’s dubious taste in despotic politicians of the recent past…

“They all left their countries, including Australia, stronger and prouder for their work in government. John Howard left our country stronger and more confident.  Margaret Thatcher left Britain stronger and more confident. And Ronald Reagan, he won the cold war, helped to make the world much safer for democracy and for the universal decencies of humanity”

 (the Guardian Australia: 26/08/13)

abbott has a revisionists pair of rose-coloured spectacles that blind him to the gritty + shitty realities of Junta power…for according to earlier interpretOr posts…the real Ronald Reagan was a right-wing, ironed-bible, helmet-haired murderer who moved in to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue a mere 30 odd years ago and hatched a foul and cunning plot to raise slush funds to finance his favourite Central American fascist death squads, the Contras –

Human Rights Watch report found that the Contras were guilty of targeting health care clinics and health care workers for assassination; kidnapping civilians; torturing and executing civilians, including children, who were captured in combat; raping women; indiscriminately attacking civilians and civilian homes; seizing civilian property; and burning civilian houses in captured towns.

As truth is sadly stranger than fiction, abbott’s hero embarked upon his reign of terror by covertly selling arms to…IRAN…and the relatively new and archly religious fundamentalist regime of …Ayatollah Khomeini…

As to ‘heroes’ Howard and Thatcher, we say ‘TAMPA’ and the ‘General Belgrano’!

more below on Iran-Contra from Wikipedia:

The Iran–Contra affair (Persian: ایران-کنترا‎, Spanishcaso Irán-contras), also referred to as IrangateContragate or the Iran-Contra scandal, was a political scandal in the United States that came to light in November 1986. During the Reagan administration, senior Reagan administration officials secretly facilitated the sale of arms to Iran, the subject of an arms embargo.[1] Some U.S. officials also hoped that the arms sales would secure the release of hostages and allow U.S. intelligence agencies to fund the NicaraguanContras. Under the Boland Amendment, further funding of the Contras by the government had been prohibited by Congress....members of the executive branch sold weapons to Iran in exchange for the release of the American hostages.[2][3] Large modifications to the plan were devised by Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North of the National Security Council in late 1985, in which a portion of the proceeds from the weapon sales was diverted to fund anti-Sandinista and anti-communist rebels, or Contras, in Nicaragua.[4][5]

Unfair and inequitable, Abbott’s Paid Parental Leave Scheme promises 26 weeks of leave paid at the primary carer’s replacement wage – regardless of income bracket – let us hope like hell that gina rinehart doesn’t fall pregnant…



…just click the image to see Australian Greens plan…


“Refugees from all over the world have made our nation richer – wave after wave  from Europe after World War II, Vietnam, Somalia, Sudan we have welcomed and inturn they have given back to us many times over…

…Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott are aiding and abetting each other in ways to treat innocent, vulnerable people in the most unimaginably cruel way – cruelty in pursuit of power shames us all, drags down our international standing as we break international law. It demeans us as a people but I know Australians are better than this.”

Christine Milne, leader of The Greens (Oz), election 2013 launch…24/08/13 …including plan for a Senate inquiry into Australia’s treatment of refugees and the legal, moral and financial implications of having one of the harshest refugee policies of any democratic country in the world.











(cartoon Len Fox – mid C20)

The neat, tidy, orderly, church-going Tony Abbott facade belies the reality of the brutal narcissist and Murdoch confidante, with his salivating sidekick, the gutless faux-macho scott morrison – bullying and demeaning the defenceless whilst simultaneously spruiking ‘Christian’ values on his putrid website. They make me feel almost ashamed to be a man.

Here at the interpretOr, we’ve actually met and interviewed real refugees – fellow human beings – our sisters and brothers on planet Earth – and they have asked us why? Why? Why? Why? Why do they not understand our plight?

Here is a challenge to Abbott + Morrison, and K Rudd – have you not been briefed on the situation on the ground in Iran, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Iraq…? If so, why are you playing politics IN THE KNOWLEDGE that our fellow human beings have witnessed their friends and  family members having eyeballs plucked out, genitals mutilated…Were you not briefed that in certain provinces of Afghanistan, if you don’t flee for your life, you may be captured and skinned alive?

Distressing to read or think about…

…but this is the real refugee dilemna.

The political strategy of Tony Abbott and his team is to disguise the reality of their economic policies, the basis of their policies is summarised by the quotation on conservatism by the much decorated economist JK Galbraith.

The modern conservative is engaged in one of man’s oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.”

The policies put forward by Abbot are in effect an economic chocolate wheel for the wealthy corporations that are funding his election campaign. The prizes for the rich are to be paid for by the poor and middle class serfs of Australia.

With Rupert Murdoch as chief spruiker, the wealthy are rolling up to get their spin as Ruperts propaganda team is convincing the punters that Tony will rescue them from the wretched position visited upon them by the socialists and transport them to a field of dreams occupied by kindly benefactors and Cardinal Pell to preserve our morality. Let jovial Joe run you through the good times ahead.

So come on you suckers, you strugglers you unworthy beings roll up and give generously to Gina and Twiggy, Rupert and James, suck on your ciggies the fun is about to begin.

With the first spin the big winners are our coal barons and polluters. We can’t have them slipping in the world rich list can we. It would be un-Australian. Lets not have the polluters pay lets all of us suckers give the rich an even break and put our hands in our pockets to relieve these great Australians of this burden. Will Phillip Morris land on the less tobacco tax symbol?

Global warming you say, and health cost of pollution ? You know thats all rubbish dreamed up by Greenies and academics, especially those greedy scientists. Anyway it would only cost you about 3 grand a year. You won’t even notice it has gone. Just think of the glory if Gina and Clive get to the top of the league table. Sorry there’s only crumbs left for you.

Now we can’t let the wowsers ruin the tobacco farmers can we. Sure they live in the USA but they are our mates and we Aussies look after our mates. Look at Rupert we let him monopolise our media and he gives generously to our campaigns, just like the cigarette companies. Thanks Phillip its money well spent.

You are going to love our parental leave policies. It is your chance to support our elite get time out to look after their kids and still be able to put them through their lovely private schools. We must cherish our elites because they make this country what it is. It would be a tragedy if the socialists were to get in and reverse the flow of wealth back to the poor and needy. The poor are used to hardships and they don’t work hard enough for this country.

You will be pleased to know that we will not throw all that money away trying to give every child a good education regardless of their parents social and economic status. You know that it doesn’t work andwould only make them want to mix with the higher classes if they get into the university. This country needs people to dig ditches and other nasty jobs and that would depress people of a better class.

This brings me to the health system. All that digging and labouring makes people really strong and happy so the poor don’t really need hospital care and psychoanalysing. The rich on the other hand are more sensitive, so we are going to divert money from the public system into private health. This will make sure that the people that create wealth can get on with the job.

Well we have a lot more policies to make up and also we have to make up a budget figure that looks like it might balance, so just watch our advertisements and get back to work. After all we don’t get anything for nothing do we?


Liberal Immigration Spokesperson Scott Morrison has unleashed a new policy that shows that the Liberal Party has crossed a significant line into world of fascism. The Liberals will legislate take away the right of refugees to access the courts. In an effort to show they are tough on border protection, the Liberals, ably assisted by the Murdoch press, are using a classic fascist method of politics. It is the politics of fear. The proposed legislation will dismantle another group of protections  from the International covenant on Human Rights.

The first tool in the classic fascist toolbox is to create fear and confusion in the populace and that fear must have a face. For many Germans, the fear was economic uncertainty that was easy to understand because the long struggle for dominance between the Axis and Allied forces had resulted in harsh economic conditions for millions of Europeans.

In Germany the face of this fear was the Roma’s and the Jew’s for opposite reasons. The Jews were very successful in business and in the professions and in many cases they were easily identifiable because of their non European names. Also because they were not Christian Aryans like the great majority, their cultural behaviour was different.The Roma’s were seen as a drain on the community because they were poor and their cultural difference even more obvious than the Jews. Because of their poverty they were percieved as a drain on the majority and a threat to their Lutheran morality.

 Abbott and his shadow minister Morrison have employed the same deceptive language to deny judicial revue to asylum seekers as the Gestapo and the Nazi secret police Kripo used to imprison Jews, Roma’s, homosexuals and others they decided as unworthy to be part of the German nation. 

The United States Holocaust Museum described the situation in its online Holocaust Encyclopedia:

 The Gestapo was empowered to use “protective custody” (Schutzhaft) to incarcerate indefinitely, without specific charge or trial, persons deemed to be potentially dangerous to the security of the Reich. Protective custody had been introduced in the German general law code before World War I to detain individuals for their own protection or to avert an immediate security threat if there were no other recourse. Now the Gestapo employed protective custody to arrest political opponents and, later, Jews, as well as Jehovah’s Witnesses who, because of religious conviction, refused to swear an oath to the Nazi German state or to serve in the armed forces. Individuals detained under protective custody were incarcerated either in prisons or concentration camps; within two months of the Reichstag Fire Decree, the Gestapo had arrested and imprisoned more than 25,000 people in Prussia alone.

It is clear that the Labor Government and the Liberal National Opposition have swung Australian politics to the far right. After five years of fear mongering and abuse, Oppositions policies, relationships and tactics now fulfill 13 of the 14 characteristics of a fascist state.

(see article below)

Unfortunately the nation subject to this fear campaign and a dumbing down process by the media, is set to vote for their first fascist government. If Morrison can set a legal precedent in denying human rights to refugees, unionists, environmental activists and foes of an Abbott Governmenmt may experience a similar fate.

The 14 Defining Characteristics Of Fascism

Free Inquiry
Spring 2003 

Dr. Lawrence Britt has examined the fascist regimes of Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), Franco (Spain), Suharto (Indonesia) and several Latin American regimes. Britt found 14 defining characteristics common to each:

1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism – Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights – Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of “need.” The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause – The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

4. Supremacy of the Military – Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5. Rampant Sexism – The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.

6. Controlled Mass Media – Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

7. Obsession with National Security – Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

8. Religion and Government are Intertwined – Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government’s policies or actions.

9. Corporate Power is Protected – The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10. Labor Power is Suppressed – Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts – Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment – Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption – Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.

14. Fraudulent Elections – Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.

They Thought They Were Free

 By Milton Mayer


Tony Abbott needs a timely reminder of his craven form re demonising the defenceless. As he and his moronic inferno of negative shadows continue to peddle their mantra of “stop the boats”, fear and bile, let’s cast our minds back to October 2007…

…Abbott’s moral bankruptcy was displayed by his actions as Federal Health minister during the ghastly Howard era:

The Sydney Morning Herald, Age, ABC and other Oz media reported that in October 2007, whilst Federal Health Minister…

Abbott accuses asbestos fighter of political stunt:

THE Federal Government last night picked a fight with a national hero, after the Health Minister, Tony Abbott, attacked the dying leader of the campaign to win justice for the victims of asbestos poisoning.

Mr Abbott accused Bernie Banton, who three years ago received an Order of Australia for his efforts to get compensation from James Hardie, of being involved in a political stunt.

Mr Banton and members of the Construction Union protested outside Mr Abbott’s electorate office in Manly yesterday, because the minister has yet to approve a drug, Alimta, which can prolong the lives of mesothelioma sufferers, for the pharmaceutical benefits scheme.

Mr Banton, who is wheelchair-bound and dying of the disease, got off his sick bed to make the journey across Sydney yesterday but Mr Abbott left before the protesters arrived. Last night the minister told Channel Nine: “Look, it was a stunt, let’s be upfront about this. I know Bernie is very sick but just because a person is sick doesn’t mean that he is necessarily pure of heart in all things.”

But last night Mr Banton returned fire at the minister. “What a flea,” he told the Herald. “What a gutless human being. He wasn’t game enough to front up and face the very people his Government is denying treatment to.”

Andrew West, SMH, October 31, 2007

A health minister who attacks a terminally ill man becomes shadow leader and a stain on Oz politics. Why on earth should anyone cast a vote for the nasty, moral coward called Tony Abbott?


the interpretOr

“We had to fight even for the right of dying cancer victims to get a speedy trial. I recall sitting in the WA Supreme Court in an interlocutory hearing for the test cases involving Wittenoom miners Mr Peter Heys and Mr Tim Barrow. CSR was represented by Ms Julie Bishop (then Julie Gillon). (She) was rhetorically asking the court why workers should be entitled to jump court queues just because they were dying.”

Australian Doctor magazine, 2007

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Wikipedia include the following on Abbott’s career to date…

  • Roman Catholic seminarian
  • Throughout his time as a student and seminarian, Abbott was writing articles for newspapers and magazines—first for the Sydney University Newspaper, and laterThe Catholic Weekly and national publications like The Bulletin.
  • He eventually became a journalist and wrote for The Australian.[13]
  • Executive Director of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy…Between 1993 and 1994 Abbott was the Executive Director of ACM.[8]
  • According to biographer Michael Duffy, Abbott’s involvement with ACM “strengthened his relationship with John Howard, who in 1994 suggested he seek pre-selection for a by-election in the seat of Warringah.”[26] Howard provided a glowing reference and Abbott won pre-selection for the safe Liberal seat.[27]
  • Abbott campaigned as Minister for Health at the 2007 election. On 31 October, he apologised for saying ‘just because a person is sick doesn’t mean that he is necessarily pure of heart in all things’, after Bernie Banton, an asbestos campaigner and terminal mesothelioma sufferer, called him ‘gutless’ for not being present to collect a petition.[51]

Do we really need this MONARCHISTIC, MURDOCH MINION plonking his lycra clad butt on the seat of power?


















(…thanks to…)

Refugee rights rally in Melbourne, July 27.

Below is an excerpt of a piece @ Green Left Weekly by Sam Wainwright

After promising not to “lurch to the right” on refugees if he returned as prime minister, Kevin Rudd dramatically did just that with his plan to send refugees to Papua New Guinea for processing and resettlement. He says no refugee who arrives by boat will ever be settled in Australia.

This is a draconian plan beyond the dreams of hardline racists like Pauline Hanson and John Howard. Yet despite this, leaders of the ALP left, such as Doug Cameron and Melissa Parke, have defended the policy.

Both piously claim to be concerned about saving lives at sea. Rudd’s policy won’t do that. But it will reinforce the racist poison that is a disaster for refugees and for the ordinary Australians whose lives will be worse because of it…

… click here to see more at Green Left Weekly…


Well folks, he’s struck again! Guerilla Gina Rinehart impersonator ‘Mike Smith’ was ejected from the audience of Sunday’s Australian Federal election debate.

Just minutes before proceedings were due to begin, the buzz of the crowd at the Australian Press Club venue was punctuated, if not punctured, by loud and repeated shouts of…

“Ponts. Big ponts. Ponts!! B…i….g P….ontsss!!!

To a mixture of boos, cheers and applause, beefy Mike was escorted from the event…By day, ‘Mike’ runs one of Australia’s ‘big four’ high street banks, but ….


…That was one of the biggest challenges, and truly the darkest and scariest time of the whole project. When he was detained, I knew the stakes were raised immensely. Suddenly I was at the helm of a film about someone who was missing, and we all feared a prolonged detention or more serious political charge like “incitement to subversion of state power,” which had recently landed several high-profile activists with multi-year jail terms [including Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo]. Fortunately, his release allowed us to finish the film without feeling like we were in full-out crisis mode, and we could continue to work hard to tell a delicate and complex story…

Read more:

Recently, while sorting through old papers, postcards, notebooks…the ephemera of an earlier part of my life…this intepretOr stumbled upon negatives of New York, summer 1989….Hahahhh, I thought, if I’m not mistaken, among shots taken (on quite good Ilford b+w film) were the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center…I stayed with Korean American friends who lived in the WTC complex…the main entrance of which was an atrium with large indoor palm trees…all pretty surreal, but hey, when in NY…


jamesh 1989

The lines that you can see (right of pic) going up, uP and UP were metre+ thick steel girders – capped with some shiny metal – and each metre-thick piece of steel was a thousand+ foot in length. There were at least 50 girders on each of the four sides of each building…so 200+ thousand-feet vertical steel girders per Tower…I don’t have a particularly mathy mind, but I find myself looking at this photograph and wondering…what…the…fxxx?


PsyCh Journal, China’s first international psychology journal, is the ‘flagship journal’ of the Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences – the only national psychology research institute in China…

PsyCh Journal is freely available during 2013 – just click August cover @ left to access…

“look…I never really left you Herr Murdoch” gushed Tony…

Realise that, realise that. You’ve been my little sleeper, eh Abbott? In actual fact, we errr, we were rather pleased with your stint with Australians for Constitutional Monarchy…

Why thank you, Herr Murdoch…I was Executive Director of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy from 1993–94.

Yeah, the bloody Royals are always good for my circulation. Was around then that you, Abbott, caught my eye. Thought we’d give you a crack on the Australian.

Indeed, I wrote…as a journalist…for your august national journal…

Then we aided your ascendancy to the towering heights of Federal Health Minister, no less…

Indeed, Herr Murdoch. Indeed.

Guess somebody had to keep those moaning asbestos union lefties at bay. You were just the ticket. You and Julie, that is.

Look, why thank you…

Fast forward to Aug ’13 and you now have 70% of all Australian newspapers…MY 70%…articulating THE VALUES, DIRECTIONS AND POLICY PRIORITIES of my next coalition government!!! 

Indeed, Herr Murdoch. Indeed.

‘nd NEVER FORGET, ABBOTT, NEVER FORGET WHAT WE LEARNED FROM BUSHES 1 & 2. NEVER FORGET that I DECIDE who will lead this country and the manner in which they lead it!!!

Is Edward J. Snowden Aboard This Plane?

America’s imperial power is on the decline, to the world’s benefit.

By Noam Chomsky

A Brief History of Squatting

The Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space chronicles decades of Lower East Side occupations.

A Bill of Rights for the Homeless

Several states are considering guaranteeing civil rights for those without a roof over their heads.

Teach for America’s Mission to Displace Rank-and-File Educators in Chicago

Why are thousands of experienced educators being replaced by new college graduates?

Water, Water, Nowhere

When water becomes scarce, conservatives become environmentalists.

The Force Behind Bills To Lower Wages and Suppress Workers’ Rights? You Guessed It: ALEC

The right-wing American Legislative Exchange Council has modeled legislation to strip workers of their rights nationwide.

By Mary Bottari and Rebekah Wilce

The Dangers of Red-Baiting

A power struggle ensues as we meet the prison chef in episode 2 of Orange Is The New Black.

Helen Thomas: First and Foremost

The White House reporter smashed the glass ceiling for women and set the bar for tenacity.

‘Bargain’ on Immigration Would Feed Prison Profits

The private prison industry stands to gain millions from the Senate’s reform plan.

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Clueless

The Newsroom recap: The ‘mission to civilize’ makes a comeback. Cover your ears.

burnside“…Spooked by tabloid scare-mongering, both major parties have chosen deterrent policies; treat them harshly, push them off to small, impoverished Pacific neighbours. The low point of this is the recent Coalition promise to bring in the military to deal with the “emergency”.

The spectacular cost of these measures passes without complaint because it is seen as a kind of protection. While it is difficult to separate out the various components of the cost, indefinite detention costs around A$110,000 per person as of 2011-12. The actual cost varies: metropolitan detention is cheapest. It gets more and more expensive as the place of detention is more remote. On current estimates, we will spend about $2.9 billion each year….”

This prescient piece continues @ the Conversation…click here to go on through…

leCurrent issue: August 2013

… Egypt in crisis: the army threatens, Saudi manoevres; Gulf states aim big and global; battle for the Nile waters; Snowden, do Americans still care about surveillance? Mandela legacy, train of good health; the great energy debate; the figures behind France’s fantasy mall; the soundcloud city;  Brazil’s telenovelas, 50 glorious years; Flaubert to Ai Weiwei, what’s the point of art? a small town in Andalusia…

…just click cover pic to access…

Bruce E. Levine, a practicing clinical psychologist, writes and speaks about how society, culture, politics and psychology intersect @AlterNet and beyond…. His latest book is Get Up, Stand Up: Uniting Populists, Energizing the Defeated, and Battling the Corporate Elite. His Web site is

…Underlying many of psychiatry’s nearly 400 diagnoses is the experience of helplessness, hopelessness, passivity, boredom, fear, isolation, and dehumanization—culminating in a loss of autonomy and community-connectedness. Do our societal institutions promote:

  • Enthusiasm—or passivity?
  • Respectful personal relationships—or manipulative impersonal ones?
  • Community, trust, and confidence—or isolation, fear and paranoia?
  • Empowerment—or helplessness?
  • Autonomy (self-direction)—or heteronomy (institutional-direction)?
  • Participatory democracy—or authoritarian hierarchies?
  • Diversity and stimulation—or homogeneity and boredom?

Research (that Bruce E. Levine documented in Commonsense Rebellion) shows that those labeled with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) do worst in environments that are boring, repetitive, and externally controlled; and that ADHD-labeled children are indistinguishable from “normals” when they have chosen their learning activities and are interested in them. Thus, the standard classroom could not be more imperfectly designed to meet the learning needs of young people who are labeled with ADHD.

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