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Proposed Changes to BC's Societies Act Has Jurists Worried

Proposed BC Societies Act could invite litigation against non-profits
by Andrew Gage - WCEL
We believe that BC’s incorporated societies – community development organizations, church groups, secular groups, community organizations, hunting groups, and, yes, environmental organizations such as West Coast Environmental Law Association – collectively make for a stronger British Columbia. That is why we’re outraged by a BC Government proposal that could be used by anyone who has a bone to pick with a society to drag it before the courts. If you’re concerned too, click here to send an email.
 
The BC Government is proposing a major re-write of the Society Act, to be named Societies Act – the legislation which governs approximately 27,000 non-profit organizations incorporated in British Columbia – and is inviting public comments until October 15th. While much of the proposed Societies Act seems unobjectionable, there are several provisions that concern us.
 

Big Tech, Big Brother: Who's Looking After Your Data Protection?

Are Apple and Google Really on Your Side Against the NSA?
by Bill Blunden - CounterPunch
In the past couple of days both Google[i] and Apple[ii] have announced that they’re enabling default encryption on their mobile devices so that only the user possessing a device’s password can access its local files. The public relations team at Apple makes the following claim:
“Apple cannot bypass your passcode and therefore cannot access this data… So it’s not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data from devices in their possession running iOS 8″

The marketing drones at Google issued a similar talking point:
 
“For over three years Android has offered encryption, and keys are not stored off of the device, so they cannot be shared with law enforcement… As part of our next Android release, encryption will be enabled by default out of the box, so you won’t even have to think about turning it on.”

Quite a sales pitch? Cleverly disguised as a news report no less. Though it’s not stated outright the tacit message is: open your wallet for the latest gadget and you’ll be safe from Big Brother. Sadly, to a large degree this perception of warrant protection is the product of Security Theater aimed at rubes and shareholders.

Breaking the Gaza Taboo

Breaking the Last Taboo - Gaza and the Threat of World War
by John Pilger
"There is a taboo," said the visionary Edward Said, "on telling the truth about Palestine and the great destructive force behind Israel. Only when this truth is out can any of us be free."
 
For many people, the truth is out now. At last, they know. Those once intimidated into silence can't look away now. Staring at them from their TV, laptop, phone, is proof of the barbarism of the Israeli state and the great destructive force of its mentor and provider, the United States, the cowardice of European governments, and the collusion of others, such as Canada and Australia, in this epic crime.
 
The attack on Gaza was an attack on all of us. The siege of Gaza is a siege of all of us. The denial of justice to Palestinians is a symptom of much of humanity under siege and a warning that the threat of a new world war is growing by the day.
 

London People's Climate March in Pictures

Photos: The People’s Climate March, London, September 21, 2014
by Andy Worthington

21.9.14

In September 21, 2014, all around the world, hundreds of thousands of people in 166 countries took part in over 2,800 events calling for urgent, coordinated action on climate change.

The website for the New York City event — attended by an estimated 300,000 people — described it accurately as the “largest climate march in history.”

The trigger for the coordinated events around the world was the Climate Summit taking place at the United Nations headquarters in New York on Tuesday, where over 120 world leaders “will try to rally the political will for a new world-wide climate treaty by the end of 2015,” as the Wall Street Journal described it.

See my photos of the People’s Climate March on Flickr here.
 
I attended the event in London, which involved around 40,000 people, a largely sunny day and a very friendly atmosphere, and took the photos available on Flickr. It was a powerful demonstration of widespread concern about the climate that is an important antidote to the cynical and well-funded climate change denial lobby, and the general indifference of politicians, who sometimes make positive noises about the environment, but are more generally in bed with the polluters — and, in addition, find themselves unable to tell the truth to their electorates: that we urgently need to make the environment a priority, and that doing so has to involve curbing our own destructive appetites.

Teaching Your Children Well - And Making Them Pay Forever Penury for It

Education With a Debt Sentence: For-Profit Colleges as American Dream Crushers and Factories of Debt
by Astra Taylor and Hannah Appel  - TomDispatch
Imagine corporations that intentionally target low-income single mothers as ideal customers. Imagine that these same companies claim to sell tickets to the American dream -- gainful employment, the chance for a middle class life. Imagine that the fine print on these tickets, once purchased, reveals them to be little more than debt contracts, profitable to the corporation’s investors, but disastrous for its customers. 
 
And imagine that these corporations receive tens of billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies to do this dirty work. 
 
Now, know that these corporations actually exist and are universities.
 
Over the last three decades, the price of a year of college has increased by more than 1,200%. In the past, American higher education has always been associated with upward mobility, but with student loan debt quadrupling between 2003 and 2013, it’s time to ask whether education alone can really move people up the class ladder. This is a question of obvious relevance for low-income students and students of color.
 

ISIS Saga: Stranger than Fiction, or Merely Strange Fiction?

Foreign Affairs as Opera Buffa: The Global Fight Against ISIS
by John Chuckman - Chuckman Blog
There is a forgotten 1933 movie serial called The Three Musketeers in which three members of the French Foreign Legion are rescued by an American, a young John Wayne, using the machine gun on his biplane to mow down Arab bad guys threatening the Legionnaires in the Sahara.

What was John Wayne doing flying around the French Sahara? He had flown over from France to visit his girlfriend. Why did he have a machine gun mounted on his plane? There wouldn’t be a story otherwise.

Like all such series, it is silly, but it is notable for a plot which includes a secret organization called the Devil’s Circle led by a mysterious and evil figure called El Shaitan, someone who wants to destroy the Legion and, after many false leads, turns out in the last reel to be a western merchant rather than an Arab.
 
Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
 

Shale Boom Bonanza for Canada's Montney Basin

Canada's Shale Boom: More To Come In Montney
by James Burgess - Oilprice.com
In the world of a constantly changing oil and gas environment, the Montney shale basin is the sleeping giant that holds the key to accelerating Canada's shale oil and gas boom, but the real treasure within this giant is a tight liquids-rich zone (approximately 15-20 miles wide) that has big and small players alike narrowing their focus for the potential of a giant payout.
 
A pervasive hydrocarbon system in the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin (WCSB) in Alberta and British Columbia, the Montney is estimated to hold 2,200 trillion cubic feet of gas, almost 29 billion barrels of natural gas liquids and over 136 billion barrels of oil.

But it is the tight liquids rich fairway (approximately 15-20 miles wide) that contains high concentrations of both free condensate and natural gas liquids that everyone is pursuing in what may very soon be one of the largest commercially viable plays in the world.
 

Laughing Us to Hell: Dubya and Bill Take Act on the Road

Killing Joke: The Presidential Leadership Scholars Program
by Chris Floyd - Empire Burlesque
And I was like, I killed 500,000 Iraqi children with my sanctions! And George here, yuk yuk, he was like —”
 
“And I was like, 500,000? Hellfire boy, I can do better than that! We bagged us more than a million of them ‘Rackies, har har har!”
 
“Yeah — haw haw haw — you bigged it up, Texas style! And now Obama’s gonna get him some of his own!”
 
“Well, there’s plenty to go around, hee hee hoo! Them folks breed like jackrabbits! Hey, Bill, you were a bit of a jackrabbit yourself in your day, weren’t you, ha ha ha?
 
“Now don’t start with that stuff, George, hee-haw, har-har! Hillary might be in the audience, yuckity yuk yuk!”
 
“Reckon how many ‘Rackies she’ll rack up when she’s Prez, Bill? — Did you see what I did there? ‘Rackies, rack up? Ho ho ho!”
 
“Yee hee hee! This old boy’s a card, ain’t he folks? Well, I imagine she’ll get a passel of ‘em, George, don’t you worry! Har har hee hee ho!”
 
“As long as she leaves a few for Chelsea in 20 years, ha ha ha ha ha! Say, Bill, I’m a bit thirsty. Could you pass me some of that water?”
 
“Sure, George! Just lean your head back and I’ll pour it right down your gullet, haw haw heee-haw!”
“You know, Bill, I sure am BOARD of that joke, snickety snicker guffaw guffaw!”
 
“You slay me, George, you really do, hur hur ha ha! But seriously folks ...”
 
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Ceaseless: What Passes for Peace in Israel

A Peace That Passeth Understanding
by Chris Floyd - Empire Burlesque
At the London Review of Books blog, Omar Hamilton outlines the many confidence-building efforts being undertaken by Israel to construct a just and lasting peace in the Holy Land, following the recent spat in Gaza. Below is Hamilton's piece in full, but do see the original for links detailing the flowers of peace that Israel is planting amongst its Palestinian brothers and sisters.
On 26 August a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas was agreed, bringing a fragile end to a war that killed 2150 Palestinians (mostly civilians) and 73 Israelis (mostly soldiers). Since then Hamas has not fired a single rocket, attacked an Israeli target, or done anything to break the terms of the ceasefire.
Israel has done the following:
1. Annexed another 1500 acres of West Bank land

2. Seized $56 million of PA tax revenue
3. Not lifted the illegal blockade (as required by the ceasefire)

4. Broken the ceasefire by firing at fishermen on four separate occasions
5. Detained six fishermen
6. Killed a 22-year-old, Issa al Qatari, a week before his wedding

7. Killed 16-year-old Mohammed Sinokrot with a rubber bullet to the head

8. Tortured a prisoner to the point of hospitalisation

9. Refused 13 members of the European Parliament entry into Gaza
10. Detained at least 127 people across the West Bank, including a seven-year-old boy in Hebron and two children, aged seven and eight, taken from the courtyard of their house in Silwad – and tear-gassed their mother

11. Continued to hold 33 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council in prison

12. Continued to hold 500 prisoners in administrative detention without charge or trial

13. Destroyed Bedouin homes in Khan al Ahmar, near Jerusalem, leaving 14 people homeless, and unveiled a plan to forcibly move thousands of Bedouin away from Jerusalem into two purpose-built townships

14. Destroyed a dairy factory in Hebron whose profits supported an orphanage

15. Destroyed a family home in Silwan, making five children homeless

16. Destroyed a house in Jerusalem where aid supplies en route to Gaza were being stored
17. Destroyed a well near Hebron

18. Set fire to an olive grove near Hebron

19. Raided a health centre and a nursery school in Nablus, causing extensive damage

20. Destroyed a swathe of farmland in Rafah by driving tanks over it

21. Ordered the dismantling of a small monument in Jerusalem to Mohamed Abu Khdeir, murdered in July by an Israeli lynch mob
22. Continued building a vast tunnel network under Jerusalem

23. Stormed the al Aqsa mosque compound with a group of far right settlers
24. Assisted hundreds of settlers in storming Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus

25. Prevented students from entering al Quds University, firing stun grenades and rubber bullets at those who tried to go in

26. Earned unknown millions on reconstruction materials for Gaza, where 100,000 people need their destroyed homes rebuilt. The total bill is estimated at $7.8 billion
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Helter-Skelter Schizoid Century Tour

Power Drain: Mysteries of the Twenty-First Century in a Helter-Skelter World
by Tom Engelhardt  - TomDispatch
It’s possible I’ve lived most of my life on the wrong planet -- and if that sounds like the first sentence of a sci-fi novel maybe, in its own way, it is. I thought I knew where I was, of course, but looking back from our helter-skelter world of 2014, I wonder.

For most of the last several hundred years, the story in view might be called the Great Concentration and it focused on an imperial struggle for power on planet Earth. 
 
That rivalry took place among a kaleidoscopic succession of European “great powers,” one global empire (Great Britain), Russia, a single Asian state (Japan), and the United States.
 
 

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, David Rovics, Roger Annis, Janine Bandcroft September 17, 2014

This Week on GR
by C. L. Cook - Gorilla-Radio.com
Media-memory being short, the name Michael Brown Jr. may elicit no more from most than a blank look; but, last month reaction to his untimely death threatened to burn the town of Ferguson, Missouri to the ground.

At least that's the way the story was told by the corporate media, (and repeated by its state-sponsored Canadian correlative, the CBC). Brown was of course the black teenager shot dead in a hail of bullets fired by a policeman for the "crime" of jay walking, sparking angry community protests.

David Rovics is an inveterate American activist singer-songwriter in the tradition of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger. David has played at demos too numerous to count for myriad issues both universal and circumstantial.

Listen. Hear.

From his start busking Boston's subway to travelling across America and the broader world, he's earned his sobriquet as "professional flat-picking rabble-rouser" honestly. Rovics was in Ferguson last month, checking out the neighbourhood where Michael was killed and attending his funeral.
 
David reported on the great societal divide his visit revealed in an essay titled, 'Ferguson Reflections,' published at his website, DavidRovics.com, where you can also find his catalogue of more than 200 tunes available for download.
 
David Rovics in the first half.
 
And; the tenuous Ukraine ceasefire is holding. This week, the two sides continued negotiations for a longer-lasting peace accord, while civilians displaced by the fighting returned home to pick up the pieces and mourn the dead. Roger Annis is a Vancouver-based peace and social justice activist and editor of the Canada Haiti Action Network website, CanadaHaitiAction.ca. His writing can also be found at Rabble.ca, and at his site, A Socialist in Canada. Roger is recently returned from Crimea, from where he filed reports on deteriorating living conditions for the people beneath the bombs of the Kiev-based coup regime.

Roger Annis and ending the war against the civilians of Eastern Ukraine in the second half.
 
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher emeritus and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft will join us at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of the good things going on in and around our city, and beyond there too.

But first, seeing ourselves reflected in Ferguson, Missouri.


Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Wednesday, 1-2pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca. He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/