Seven Reasons Why I Make Art (And Why You Should, Too)

seven-reasons-why-i-make-art-and-why-you-should-too

18-03-19 10:02:00,

I’ve been making a conscious effort to put out more poems and short stories of increasing quality alongside my usual output of essays on politics and the media. Here are seven reasons why:

1. There are things you can say with art that you can’t say otherwise.

In the 1957 obscenity trial over the publication of the book Howl and Other Poems, English professor Mark Schorer was called to the stand and asked to explain the meaning of lines from Allen Ginsberg’s masterpiece.

“Sir, you can’t translate poetry into prose,” Schorer replied to the prosecution. “That’s why it’s poetry.”

There is a whole spectrum of possible attacks that we can make upon the oppression machine which go largely unutilized because most revolutionary-minded voices focus solely on facts, statistics and linear arguments in conventional prose to get their point across. They do this largely because the narrative matrix which holds the oppression machine in place predominantly uses prose for its propaganda; they push back against the enemy using the same weapons they see the enemy using. But the only reason the propagandists focus on prose is because they are completely artless servants of an agenda which has no spirit. Those fighting the machine are unencumbered by such limitations, and it’s foolish not to fully exploit the weakness of our enemy using that advantage.

Films and plays get panned as preachy and ham-fisted when they try to ram a specific message down the throats of their audience, and understandably so: if someone wants to say a specific thing, they can just say it, using words. They don’t need to be wasting people’s time with a sermon dressed up as art, especially when those people are hoping to have some ineffable nugget planted deep within some tender, hidden part of themselves in the way that only art can do.

With art you can get underneath the narrative matrix and speak to an unguarded part of an audience that hasn’t been armored up by layers of establishment narrative.  Good art changes you, leaves you seeing the world a bit different in ways you can’t really articulate and for reasons you can’t explain. It opens people’s eyes to seeing things they couldn’t see before,

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10 Reasons The Gilets-Jeunes Are The Real Deal

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11-02-19 08:06:00,

Authored by David Studdert via Off-Guardian.org,

We live in a world where democracy is a threat and freedom is a punishment, where you can’t tell a turd from a diamond, where 5G is trumpeted even as it threatens to kill us, where the prevailing ethos is buyer-beware and where anyone against warmongering and eternal war is smeared and painted as a monster.

Who do you believe? All the things you felt certain about Democracy, liberty, the right to free speech, television news, all these things are not only being undermined, in reality, they are being thrown in your face. Democracy in the Nazi-controlled Ukraine, moderate jihadi rebels, no democracy in Russia or Venezuela, despite the fingerprint tests on voters and the voting booth cameras, and this voice saying they’re fair elections and a dozen saying what about France isn’t that democracy and twenty other voices say they’re not and right-wing groups going off in the streets and chemicals in your food and forgetting to turn your wi-fi laden house on before you rush to another meeting or charge your phone, and, and…well…I got lost just writing it.

Keeping you busy, that’s what Neo-Liberalist empire does, and amidst it all, you’re meant to be an active citizen stuffed with social capital, capable of an opinion on any topic at the drop of the hat.

Ontological security, everybody needs it, but right now it’s in short supply especially in big metropolitan cities. No wonder people are confused and afraid, walking backwards into the future, stuck knee-deep in mud dreaming that somehow, through some miracle, everything will, “Please!”, return to normal.

So amidst this Tower of Babble, let’s resolve one conundrum for you.

Here are ten reasons the Gilets Jaunes (unlike US sponsored colour revolutions) are the real deal, by which I mean the direct expression of the people of France.

1. They don’t speak in Abstractions/idealisms: abstraction is the language of power, hierarchy and representation. Abstraction and its use in a political context are what unite all regimes be they communist, Nazi or neo-liberal.[1] The Gilets are not of this school. Their demands are simple, concrete: lower toll way charges,

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12 Reasons Why Even Low Levels of Glyphosate Are Unsafe | Light On Conspiracies – Revealing the Agenda

12-reasons-why-even-low-levels-of-glyphosate-are-unsafe-light-on-conspiracies-8211-revealing-the-agenda

21-01-19 12:17:00,

  • The Facts:Decades of research have shown how Glyphosate is toxic in any amount, both for human and and the environment. This is not debatable.
  • Reflect On:Glyphosate is illegal in several dozen countries around the world due to health and environmental concerns. How can this product be approved for use when it’s abundantly clear it’s extremely unsafe, just like DDT was?

By Zen Honeycutt, Founding Executive Director Mom’s Across AmericaChildren’s Heath Defense Coalition Partner

Proponents of GMOs and Glyphosate-based herbicides and staunch believers in the EPA have long argued that low levels of glyphosate exposure are safe for humans. Even our own EPA tells us that Americans can consume 17 times more glyphosate in our drinking water than European residents. The EWG asserts that 160 ppb of glyphosate found in breakfast cereal is safe for a child to consume due to their own safety assessments, and yet renowned scientists and health advocates have long stated that no level is safe.  Confusion amongst consumers and the media is rampant.

Glyphosate is the declared active chemical ingredient in Roundup and Ranger Pro, which are both manufactured by Monsanto, the original manufacturer of Agent Orange and DDT. There are 750 brands of glyphosate-based herbicides.Glyphosate based herbicides are the most widely used in the world and residues of glyphosate have been found in tap water, children’s urine, breast milk, chips, snacks, beer, wine, cereals, eggs, oatmeal, wheat products, and most conventional foods tested.

The detection of glyphosate in these foods has set off alarms of concern in households and food manufacturers’ offices around the world. Lawsuits have sprung up against companies that make food products that claim to be “100% Natural” and yet contain glyphosate residues. These lawsuits have been successful. Debates, using the argument that “the dose makes the poison,” have been pushed by media. Speculation is that these media outlets are funded by advertisers that make or sell these chemicals or have sister companies that do, and threatening their profits would be unwise for all involved – except the consumers.

It is time to set the record straight

Here are 12 reasons why there is no safe level of glyphosate herbicide residue in our food or beverages.

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Top 10 Reasons Not To Love NATO

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17-01-19 09:15:00,

Authored by David Swanson,

The New York Times loves NATO, but should you?

Judging by comments in social media and the real world, millions of people in the United States have gone from having little or no opinion on NATO, or from opposing NATO as the world’s biggest military force responsible for disastrous wars in places like Afghanistan (for Democrats) or Libya (for Republicans), to believing NATO to be a tremendous force for good in the world.

I believe this notion to be propped up by a series of misconceptions that stand in dire need of correction.

1. NATO is not a war-legalizing body, quite the opposite. NATO, like the United Nations, is an international institution that has something or other to do with war, but transferring the UN’s claimed authority to legalize a war to NATO has no support whatsoever in reality. The crime of attacking another nation maintains an absolutely unaltered legal status whether or not NATO is involved. Yet NATO is used within the U.S. and by other NATO members as cover to wage wars under the pretense that they are somehow more legal or acceptable. This misconception is not the only way in which NATO works against the rule of law. Placing a primarily-U.S. war under the banner of NATO also helps to prevent Congressional oversight of that war. Placing nuclear weapons in “non-nuclear” nations, in violation of the Nonproliferation Treaty, is also excused with the claim that the nations are NATO members (so what?). And NATO, of course, assigns nations the responsibility to go to war if other nations go to war — a responsibility that requires them to be prepared for war, with all the damage such preparation does.

2. NATO is not a defensive institution. According to the New York Times, NATO has “deterred Soviet and Russian aggression for 70 years.” This is an article of faith, based on the unsubstantiated belief that Soviet and Russian aggression toward NATO members has existed for 70 years and that NATO has deterred it rather than provoked it. In violation of a promise made, NATO has expanded eastward, right up to the border of Russia,

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277 Billion Reasons Why France Is So Worried About Italy’s Showdown With Brussels

277-billion-reasons-why-france-is-so-worried-about-italy8217s-showdown-with-brussels

02-11-18 11:18:00,

Authored by Don Quijones via WolfStreet.com,

…the French megabanks are on the hook!

France was just served with a stark reminder of an inconvenient truth: €277 billion of Italian government debt — the equivalent of 14% of French GDP — is owed to French banks. Given that Italy’s government is currently locked in an existential blinking match with both the European Commission and the ECB over its budget plan for 2019, this could be a big problem for France.

On Friday, France’s finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, urged the commission to “reach out to Italy” after rejecting the country’s draft 2019 budget for breaking EU rules on public spending. Le Maire also conceded that while contagion in the Eurozone was definitely contained, the Eurozone “is not sufficiently armed to face a new economic or financial crisis.” As Maire well knows, a full-blown financial crisis in Italy would eventually spread to France’s economy, with French banks serving as the main transmission mechanism.

France isn’t the only Eurozone nation with unhealthy levels of exposure to Italian debt, although it is far and away the most exposed. According to the Bank of International Settlements, German lenders have €79 billion worth of exposure to Italian debt and Spanish lenders, €69 billion. In other words, taken together, the financial sectors of the largest, second largest and fourth largest economies in the Eurozone — Germany, France and Spain — hold over €415 billion of Italian debt on their balance sheets.

While the exposure of German lenders to Italian debt has waned over the last few years, that of French lenders has actually grown, belying the ECB’s long-held claim that its QE program would help reduce the level of interdependence between European sovereigns and banks.

If anything, the opposite has happened: thanks to the ECB’s tireless efforts to underpin the Eurozone’s bond markets (by doing “whatever it takes” to make sovereign bonds virtually risk-free), banks have been able to make a tidy margin by simply bulk-buying government bonds at officially zero risk.

A few years ago fiscally hawkish Eurozone countries such as Germany, the Netherlands, and Finland lobbied to put an end to this practice by removing the risk-free status of certain risk-prone sovereign bonds.

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11 Million Reasons for Wall Street & London to Hate Russia | New Eastern Outlook

11 Million Reasons for Wall Street & London to Hate Russia | New Eastern Outlook

26-07-18 12:58:00,

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Why does the US media have an anti-Russian fixation? It’s not what the American people want to hear. 71% of the Ronald Reagan-loving, military-obsessed Republican Party approve of Trump meeting with Putin.   On the other side, top liberal CNN commentator and former President Obama’s adviser, Van Jones has admitted in a video recording that the “Russiagate” story is a “big nothing burger” which Democrats are not interested in.  The Russia-fixated, Hillary Clinton-DNC liberal establishment now faces an upsurge of opposition from Democratic Socialists like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders, who emphasize the need for populist economics reforms.

Conservatives don’t want to hear it. Liberals don’t want to hear it. Hating Russia is just not a bandwagon the U.S. public is ready to jump on. Yet, if one turns on American television, in the aftermath of the summit in Helsinki, the rhetoric and accusations against the government of the Russian Federation are almost endless.

Like Trump, Obama was also unable to resolve the tensions now being described as the “New Cold War.” Let’s not forget that Obama was elected saying he would “talk to Putin”. In the early years of Obama’s first term, he said he intended to “reset” relations with the Eurasian superpower, and was attacked for it by the Tea Party. The American people favor better relations with Russia, and politicians win votes for promising it, yet the dangerous trajectory continues. Why?

A New Day in the Energy Markets

One answer can be found in the field of economics. On July 18th, crude oil production in the United States reached 11 million barrels per day. This is the highest it has ever been. The drilling and fracking rigs are pulling more oil out of the ground and shale than ever before in U.S. history.

The longtime liberal aspiration for “Energy Independence” has been achieved.  The U.S. is no longer dependent on overseas oil. A new OPEC boycott wouldn’t be anything like the catastrophe of 1973. The longtime oil export ban has been lifted, and crude pulled from US shale and soil is now being shipped off to China and other countries.

Meanwhile, the spell of low oil prices that began in 2014 is long over.

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