This week, the following letter from Harvey Wasserman, appeared in the good grey New York Times:
“This is an absolute red alert moment for our nation and our species. Donald Trump has clearly lost his mind, and this is an extremely dangerous moment for the nation & the world. Between the COVID. the drugs (especially the steroids) and his deeply embedded fast-advancing dementia, this is absolutely not the man to be in charge of the nuclear football…or anything else, not even his i-phone or remote. We are entering territory not experienced since the Cuban missile crisis. This is someone in the White House who at any time could initiate a global apocalypse and have no idea what he’s doing. In more than fifty years as a Times reader, I do not believe I’ve read a singly more disturbing news report. The world’s leaders—especially those with nuclear weapons—must be immediately notified. Again, amidst all the partisan drama of a presidential campaign, this is a moment where someone who is seriously deranged could [do] unlimited and irreversible damage. It is absolutely incumbent on VP Pence, the Cabinet, Congressional leadership of both parties and the military high command to intervene here. We are all at serious, tangible risk. There is no mystery about what’s going on, and it is far behind time to act. There is a reason for the 25th amendment & it’s precisely this. ACT NOW!”
That the Times, not known for any signs of adventuresome thought, would print such a letter is clear acknowledgement that Harvey Wasserman comes with all the appropriate credentials of someone who has had a life-long preoccupation with nuclear power and its vast harms.
Disease as metaphor
“The king is in the altogether, altogether…” from the “King’s Jester” Danny Kaye’s light hearted lyrics have taken on a deeply somber meaning in October, 2020. We still live more or less attuned (or not) to the gravity of our existential moment, a moment when the arrest has been called for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, a moment when a small militia, inspired by the fiery emanations from the presidential mouth, had plans to foment a civil war by kidnapping the Governor of Michigan, only to be stopped in its tracks by the FBI. Despite breathing the bad air that may very well be fogging our judgment, we have left the Yellow Brick Road.
Our national headquarters have become a web of pestilence with COVID’s rapid spread, imperiling our national security, that entity so dear to authoritarians, they can’t wait to evoke it.
Righting the Apple Cart
Foremost in the American mind right now is voting. Encouraging as many people as possible to vote: those who neglect voting, those intimidated but inclined to vote, use of early voting, and monitoring every sickening effort to suppress voting and filing opposing lawsuits. The rationale here is that the wider the margin of “victory,” the more likely the opposition will nicely fold its tents and silently steal away. But a growing sense of reality tells us that the opposition violates any laws of predictability, possibility, or elementary psychology. Rather it has long emblemized all that is patriarchal, red blooded, and numero uno in the Good Old Boy view of reality
But oranges are not the only fruit. There are some apples in the apple cart. In The Tree Collin Tudge describes the tree-as-organism thus: “Each cell is dependent on all the rest, [with] groups of cells cooperating to form organs, such as… leaves and flowers. This degree of collaboration requires enormous self-sacrifice…. Each cell must give up some of it own ability to live by itself. Each cell has to trust the others so to speak. Any cell in the organism that goes berserk and tries…to do its own thing destroys the whole, and ultimately destroys itself. In medical circles, such cells are said to be cancerous.” As well, Tudge’s description is emblematic of a healthy society itself.
But already there are masses of people who are in communion with the world in which they live, collaborating with their environments, intelligent beings on the upward path to further evolution. Extinction Rebellion, started in the UK, and spreading world wide, including in the US, and the Sunrise Youth movement are two such examples; in the cities the Black Lives Matter movement has taken off in response to police atrocities, with a nationwide outcry to defund police, to limit jail expansion, and foreseeing an end to the role of punishment in the Puritan thinking that has traditionally informed much of US society, offering such humane solutions as reallocation of swollen police budgets in favor of funding starved community services. In some cities, such as Oakland for example, mothers with children are appropriating empty buildings in which to live, and in education, outdoor learning, the learning that dares not speak its name, has begun to be considered. In the area of agriculture, still now, along with war and militarism, the major producer of green house gases, many more city gardens are being established, and community gardens are flourishing. And most significantly, both native American and Canadian tribes are Idle No More, reclaiming their cultural tradition as Earth Protectors, defending their rights to establish check points at reservation borders, and advocating for the and but also by so-called “law enforcement.”
The time of looking to government to recognize and foster the growth of life on Earth, human and extra-human, has long vanished. In the face of the stresses humanity faces on multiple fronts, resistance is already flourishing, with a huge wave of push backs taking root.
PREPARE for November.
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PROTEST sub minimum wages and lack of overtime at
DEMONSTRATE in San Francisco against Barrett’s confirmation at Noon, Monday, Oct. 12 at Hastings Law School McAllister and Hyde; and walk to 9th circuit at 7th & Mission, S.F.
Object to Barrett’s nomination at https://action.momsrising.org/sign/SCOTUS_COVID/?t=11&referring_akid=14402.8086.ltvhdx
Former world leaders and ministers, UN former Secy Ban Ki Moon among them, sign open letter appealing to current political leaders to advance disarmament, especially nuclear disarmament, before it’s too late.
Venezuelan gov’t scores legal victory in $1 billion gold case.
Responding to challenge to OPEC’s work, censored Ex OPEC Chief speaks out on Syria.
Moroccan PM Othmani told UN Genrl. Assembly there can be no peace without giving Palestinians their rights.
Malaysia ratifies UN nuclear weapon bn treaty.
World’s biggest wind and solar producer now worth more than ExxonMobil.
In a first, UK trade unions commit to challenging Israeli ‘apartheid.”
Human rights defenders sue German Parliament over anti-BS resolution.
Anti-drone protesters block entrance to US “assassins’ drone base in Nevada.
Joint Chiefs of Staff in quarantine at #45 COVID response becomes national security issue.
Laying tens of thousands of preventable deaths at foot of #45 failures, top US health official resigns in protest.
Citing dubious practices and possible White House interference, Schumer and Wyden demand IG probe into IRS Trump audit.
Fed appeals panel unanimously rules Manhattan DA can enforce subpoena for #45 tax returns,
Bolstering progressive demand, Fed Chair Jerome Powell says more stimulus crucial to avoid even more unnecessary hardship.
3 in 4 Americans, including 55% Repulicrats, want Senate GP to prioritize COVID relief over ramming thru Barrett nomination.
Texas cop Shaun Lucas charged with murder of ‘hometown hero” and unarmed black man, Jonathan Price.
In a major blow to incarceration, private prison group loss lawsuit challenging California ban.
Portland DA declines to prosecute 70% of Portland protest cases.
Grand Jury indict St. Louis couple who pointed guns at BLM protesters.
Protest in Kansas City over arrest of black woman enters seventh day.
Breonna Taylor’s family demands a special prosecutor to reopen case.
Report finds gang-like police clique in E. LA sheriff Villanuela’s station exerting undue influence.
California bans choke holds.
Facebook asked to shut down large numbers of fake #45 sites run by out of country anons.
Facebook pulls hundreds of #45 campaign ads hat lied about refugees and COVID.
NIAC condemns new Iran sanctions that stifle humanitarian trade.
Labor Unions and green groups sue #45 administration for failure to protect frontline workers from COVID.
Worker at Amazon Minnesota Center walk out.
Baltimore teachers demand masks, tests, and Plexiglas.
#45 USDA sued over program allowing horrific mass slaughter of native wildlife.
Groups sue #45 Fish & Wildlife service after officials refuse protections for endangered wolverines.
Michigan AG announces felony charges for conservative fraudsters trying to suppress the vote.
Just blatant voter suppression: groups sue to stop Texas Gov. from eviscerating ballot drop-off system.
“Integrity panel,“ in PA, now considered far more than FLA a key state in election, has been pulled.
Friso Five helped oust Police Chief Suhr. Now they want to defund police.
Alameda DA to reopen Oscar Grant case.
Senate race bet. Graham and Harrison shifts to “toss up.”
Former CDC implores agency’s current boss to expose #45’s mishandling of the COVID pandemic.
Slimy Facebook removed #45 COVID post, twitter hides similar tweet.
House report on Silicon Valley monopolies bolsters call for far-reaching anti-trust measures.
Philly activists reclam 50 vacant houses creating model for organizing as mass evictions loom.