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Farley's Parting Words: Canada's Greatest Eco-Defender to the Last

Farley's Last Words
by Ray Grigg - Shades of Green
farley mowatWhen Farley Mowat died on May 6, 2014, at age 92, his incessant flow of writing stopped, words about him shifted from the present to the past tense, and an examination of his life and influence began. But some conclusions were immediately obvious.
 
There was only one Farley — mention Farley anywhere across Canada and it had to mean Farley Mowat.
 
He was also one of the world's first eco-warriors. And, as a writer, he will probably have the last word because of the enduring character of print — 17 million copies of 44 books translated into dozens of languages will ensure that the echo of his presence will influence many others well into the future.
 
For a man who seemed so overt and uninhibited, the deeper Farley was, in many ways, a private person. But we get clear glimpses of his thoughts, feelings and commitments.
 

Icing the Fukushima Meltdown: "Honest" Abe Stacks Regulatory Commission with Nuke Industry Insiders - Plans Plant Restarts

Newsflash: Fukushima Is Still a Disaster
by Harvey Wasserman  - Truthdig
The corporate media silence on Fukushima has been deafening even though the melted-down nuclear power plant’s seaborne radiation is now washing up on American beaches.
 
Ever more radioactive water continues to pour into the Pacific.
 
At least three extremely volatile fuel assemblies are stuck high in the air at Unit 4. Three years after the March 11, 2011, disaster, nobody knows exactly where the melted cores from Units 1, 2 and 3 might be.
 
Amid a dicey cleanup infiltrated by organized crime, still more massive radiation releases are a real possibility at any time.

Readying for the Next Disaster: Tar Sands Operators Eye Spill Prevention

Canadian Law Makes It Cheaper To Prevent Oil Sands Leaks Than Clean Them Up
by James Stafford - Oilprice.com
As the Canadian government pushes a new law rendering pipeline companies liable for all damages from leaks and spills, the only friend to both sides in this polarized world of dirty oil sands is leak prevention technology.
 
On May 14, amid heightened opposition to two planned pipelines, Canada's Natural Resources Ministry unveiled a new law making pipeline operators liable for all the costs and damages related to oil spills, regardless of whether the operators were at fault or demonstrated negligence.
 
Under the new law, pipeline operators will be required to set up advance clean-up funds for future spills, while the Canadian National Energy board will be given the authority to order operators to reimburse those affected by spills.
 
Canada desperately needs more pipeline infrastructure to handle its increasing oil sands production capacity, but opposition has been growing exponentially to Enbridge's Northern Gateway project and Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
 

Brazil's Bread and Circuses Can't Distract the Workers' Struggle

Brazil: Workers Struggle Trumps Sports Spectacle
by James Petras
For decades social critics have bemoaned the influence of sports and entertainment spectacles in ‘distracting’ workers from struggling for their class interests. According to these analysts, ‘class consciousness’ was replaced by ‘mass’ consciousness.
 
They argued that atomized individuals, manipulated by the mass media, were converted into passive consumers who identified with millionaire sports heroes, soap opera protagonists and film celebrities.
 
The culmination of this ‘mystification’ – mass distraction –were the ‘world championships’ watched by billions around the world and sponsored and financed by billionaire corporations: the World Series (baseball), the World Cup (soccer/futbol), and the Super Bowl (American football).
 
Today, Brazil is the living refutation of this line of cultural-political analysis. Brazilians have been described as ‘football crazy’. Its teams have won the most number of World Cups. Its players are coveted by the owners of the most important teams in Europe. Its fans are said to “live and die with football” . . . Or so we are told.
 
Yet it is in Brazil where the biggest protests in the history of the World Cup have taken place.
 

Women's Fighting Words and the Battle of the Isla Vista Massacre Aftermath

Our Words Are Our Weapons: The Feminist Battle of the Story in the Wake of the Isla Vista Massacre
by Rebecca Solnit  - TomDispatch
solnitexplainthingsIt was a key match in the World Cup of Ideas. The teams vied furiously for the ball. The all-star feminist team tried repeatedly to kick it through the goalposts marked Widespread Social Problems, while the opposing team, staffed by the mainstream media and mainstream dudes, was intent on getting it into the usual net called Isolated Event.
 
To keep the ball out of his net, the mainstream's goalie shouted “mental illness” again and again. That “ball,” of course, was the meaning of the massacre of students in Isla Vista, California, by one of their peers.

All weekend the struggle to define his acts raged. Voices in the mainstream insisted he was mentally ill, as though that settled it, as though the world were divided into two countries called Sane and Crazy that share neither border crossings nor a culture.
 
Mental illness is, however, more often a matter of degree, not kind, and a great many people who suffer it are gentle and compassionate. And by many measures, including injustice, insatiable greed, and ecological destruction, madness, like meanness, is central to our society, not simply at its edges.
 

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Ethan Cox, Janine Bandcroft, Defend Our Climate June 2, 2014

This Week on GR
by C. L. Cook - Gorilla-Radio.com
che kokoWhether environmental, economic, social, political, or personal there is little doubt we are in a world of trouble. One place where all the disparate dilemmas we face can be addressed is in the media, but there too we find discord, corruption, and systemic breakdown.

From the concentration of information systems into the hands of a few trans-global corporate interests, to the erosion of public broadcasting, the failure to maintain an effectively diversified media environment means the capitulation of democratic ideals to the predations of a capital model yet to appreciate the values inherent in serving the public interest.

So, what's to be done?

Ethan Cox is a Montreal-based journalist, editor and political commentator whose writing has appeared everywhere from the National Post and Toronto Star, to The Tyee and Al-Jazeera America. He's a frequent political analyst, appearing on all three national TV networks, and regularly on Montreal radio.
 
Cox is also one of the dedicated group of media pros with activist backgrounds behind RicochetMedia.ca, a paradigm-shifting effort to reverse the downward trend of both the corporate and State media through the re-invigoration of a media of, by, and for the People.

Listen. Hear.

Ethan Cox in the first half.

And; last month, various environmental and social organizations coordinated with communities across Canada and came out to Defend Our Climate. The locally organized rallies reflected their communal interests while following the general theme of a sustainable, and stable future for animals and their eco-systems, and for we human animals and the environment we too depend on for survival. I went down to Victoria's manifestation to stand together with the rest of the country.

Victoria Defends Our Climate in the second half.

And; CFUV Radio broadcaster and Victoria Street Newz publisher emeritus, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of what's good going on on our city's streets and beyond.

But first, Ethan Cox and firing back at the corporate and captured public media behemoths with RicochetMedia.ca


Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm 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/
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Extinguishing the War: Syria's Grand Mufti Speaks Out

“They want to start a religious war; we want to extinguish it” – Mufti of Syria
by Eva BartlettCrescent International
Eva Bartlett - Syria Grand MuftiMost news accounts of Syria paint a desolate, sectarian country where people in areas secured by the Syrian army are miserable and where people, above all, want to see Bashar al-Assad gone. In all regards I found the opposite. In particular, I found wide-spread, and usually ardent, support for the President.

I entered Syria as part of an international Peace Delegation, comprising over 40 people who believe in a political, Syrian-led solution for Syria. In the course of week, we visited Latakia, Homs, and areas of Damascus, sat with the top religious leaders and numerous grassroots leaders. We heard testimonies from survivors of massacres—Haram, Kasab, Maaloula—and met with various internally-displaced from Yarmouk.

After the week had passed, I stayed on independently, moving freely on my own throughout Damascus, engaging with various stratum of Damascus life.


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Passing: Maya Angelou

Still I Rise
by Maya Angelou
 
Maya Angelou, 1928 - 2014
[Listen. Hear.]
angelou You may write me down in history 
With your bitter, twisted lies, 
You may trod me in the very dirt 
But still, like dust, I’ll rise. 

Does my sassiness upset you? 
Why are you beset with gloom? 
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns, 
With the certainty of tides, 
Just like hopes springing high, 
Still I’ll rise. 

Did you want to see me broken? 
Bowed head and lowered eyes? 
Shoulders falling down like teardrops, 
Weakened by my soulful cries? 
 Does my haughtiness offend you? 
Don’t you take it awful hard 
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard. 

You may shoot me with your words, 
You may cut me with your eyes, 
You may kill me with your hatefulness, 
But still, like air, I’ll rise. 

Does my sexiness upset you? 
Does it come as a surprise 
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds 
At the meeting of my thighs? 

Out of the huts of history’s shame I rise 
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain I rise 
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, 
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. 
 Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise 
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear I rise 
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, 
I am the dream and the hope of the slave. 

I rise
I rise.
I rise.
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Sanctions and Assassinations: US Determined to Overthrow Venezuela's Maduro Government

US moves towards sanctions as Venezuela charges coup plot
by Bill Van Auken - WSWS
The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved legislation mandating sanctions against Venezuela as officials there presented evidence of US involvement in a plot to bring down the government of President Nicolas Maduro.
 
The bill, passed in a voice vote by the House with only 14 members in opposition, demands that the Obama administration draw up a list of Venezuelan officials allegedly responsible for repression during violent protests that have been organized across the South American country since last February. They would be sanctioned with the freezing of any assets in the US and the denial or revocation of visas.
 
Washington’s step closer toward another blatant imperialist intervention against Venezuela came on the same day that government officials in Caracas publicly presented what they described as evidence of US involvement in a plot by the far-right in Venezuela to overthrow the government and assassinate President Maduro.
 

What's Topp's Secret? How BC's NDP Imploded at the Polls

TOPP SECRET: Was the 2013 Election in British Columbia Rigged?
by Walt McGinnis - PowertothePeople
topp gunIt has been a year since the provincial election in British Columbia and the fog is slowly lifting off well-kept secrets regarding what caused the Adrian Dix campaign to fall apart and astonishingly how he seemed to be the last guy to realize it.

This story is not about the injustice of NDP losing, because one could argue that they are no better than the Liberals, rather it is about the terrible reality that powerful people and public relations firms can change election outcomes and governments, and that the citizens of Canada may have lost their power to stop them. (1)(2)
 
This is a scenario to consider. With the Tar-sands pipelines not built and the Liquid Natural Gas development still in its unsure infancy as well as several scandals like the BC Rail give away, the BC Hydro financial catastrophe on top of the smart meter fiasco all to be kept under control, the election results could not be left to chance. The Liberals looked like the best bet so they were supported by Industry and their lobbyists. And what better way to steer the outcome of an election than to manage both sides?
 

How Many More? Gun Lobby Promises: Many

Insanity Extends Beyond the Shooters
by Walter Brasch
During this past week, in Scranton, Pa., a 16-year old put two bullets into the head of a taxi driver and then stole about $500 earned by the cabbie that evening.
 
The teen, who showed no remorse when arrested a few hours later, mumbled a few words about his reasons. He said he murdered the cabbie “’Cause that’s what I do to people that don’t listen.” The teen thought the cabbie was taking too long to get him to his destination. The driver was a 47-year-old man with a wife and two children. The gun was an unlicensed 9-mm.
 
A few days later, in Payson, Ariz., a three-year-old boy found a loaded semi-automatic gun in the apartment of family friend, began playing with it, and accidentally killed his 18-month-old brother. Police recovered several other weapons from the apartment.
 
In Homestead, Fla., a 28-year-old man, who admitted he was drinking and using cocaine, was showing off an AK-47 at a picnic. His six-year-old nephew picked up the gun when no one was watching, played with it, and accidentally killed his own grandfather.
 
In Isla Vista, Calif., a 22-year-old man with a history of mental problems, stabbed his three roommates, and then drove near the campus of the University of California at Santa Barbara. In about 10 minutes, he murdered three more students and wounded 13 more before committing suicide. Police say the killer had three 9 mm. weapons and about 400 rounds of ammunition, all of it purchased legally.
 
The father of one of those killed, to a standing cheering crowd of 20,000 at a memorial service, called for an end of gun violence. “How many more people are going to have to die in this situation before the problem gets solved?” he demanded.