...But of these sophisms and elenchs of merchandise I skill not...
Milton, Areopagitica

Except he had found the
standing sea-rock that even this last
Temptation breaks on; quieter than death but lovelier; peace
that quiets the desire even of praising it.

Jeffers, Meditation On Saviors



"...a profoundly different place than we grew up thinking about."

Que saviez-vous donc de la vie, petites filles de quinze ans, de ses joies, de ses espoirs, de ses luttes? Voila pourquoi nous sommes infiniment bouleverses de ce voyage sans retour.
Suicide is the biggest cause of death among French young people after road accidents.


WASHINGTON - September 19 - Legislation introduced today by Rep. Richard Pombo (R-Cal.) would severely undermine the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and punch loopholes in the law on behalf of greedy developers, oil companies, and other special interests. Ironically called the "Threatened and Endangered Species Recovery Act of 2005," this legislation strikes at the heart of our nation's wildlife conservation efforts.
"If Rep. Pombo's legislation were part of the original Endangered Species Act, the recovery of the bald eagle, grizzly bear, and peregrine falcon would have been extremely difficult if not impossible," said Rodger Schlickeisen, President of Defenders of Wildlife. "The bill contains provisions that would severely cripple the federal effort to recover endangered plants and animals. It runs counter to the very intent of the Endangered Species Act and flies in the face of Rep. Pombo's earlier professed desire to improve wildlife conservation."
Defenders of Wildlife/Common Dreams

The 2005 Right Livelihood Awards:

In every generation, there are groups of people and individuals around the globe who valiantly uphold these principles of right livelihood. They should be the stars in our human cosmos, but their work often entails personal sacrifice, being opposed by powerful forces around them.
The Right Livelihood Award was established in 1980 to honour and support such people. It has become widely known as the 'Alternative Nobel Prize' and there are now over 100 laureates from 48 countries.
I was always interested both in problems and in solutions, and I always was surprised that we continue living with problems, to which there are solutions. And I wondered why many of these solutions were not being taken seriously. And I also asked: How do you get taken seriously? And so having grown up in Sweden, it was clear that if you win a Nobel Prize, you get taken seriously. And therefore I proposed to the Nobel Foundation to introduce a prize for this new important issue, for the environment, and also a prize relevant to the needs of the people in the so-called third world. And although I offered to provide some money to get this off the ground to get them take it seriously, they turned it down. But in the meantime I told so many people about this idea and had so much support that I decided to try to do it myself. Of course in a much smaller way than the Nobel Prizes, because I had made some money by dealing in rare postage stamps, which is, of course, less profitable than inventing dynamite like Alfred Nobel did.
interview with Jakob von Uexkull
Jorg Altekruse/Right Livelihood Award
As you may know, a few years ago the 'Alternative Nobel Prize'(The Right Livelihood Award) which I established , was awarded to the Committee of Soldiers' Mothers of Russia for their struggle to protect soldiers against mistreatment .Precisely because I am aware of these problems do I want to express my gratitude to the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation for the maturity and peacefulness with which they have reacted to all the reversals, hardships and provocations they have suffered in recent years.
We have an obligation to them -- and to all of us -- to act.For peace without justice, truth, hope and trust cannot last .In a finite world filled with arms of mass destruction peace cannot co-exist with an ideology of global greed.At present we have no global dialogue, but the attempt by a privileged minority to impose on everyone else a worldwide economic model, the consequences of which increasingly resemble sophisticated theft and a war of the rich against the poor.As the Millenium approaches, perhaps it is time again to throw the money-lenders out of our temples --and remind ourselves that you cannot eat money.Hopefully, Russia with its rich spiritual tradition can take the intiative in showing the world that the crucial question is not how much solidarity, natural diversity and culture our economy can afford.It is, on the contrary, what economic system our humanity, civilisation and environment can afford.The present economic 'war on costs' has become a war on society, culture and nature -- in which there can only be losers.Their cost-benefit-analysis has become an economics of genocide, in which the lives of the global poor are valued at a fraction of those of the rich.
Those responsible for this silent war against all our higher human values claim that there is no alternative.There is, they say, only one economic system which works , namely the global rule of general-purpose money without limits or borders.There is no acceptance of diversity -- only the intolerant preaching of the 'winners' that the world must be ruled by the mass psychoses of the capital markets.Nothing must be done unless it is more profitable than the (unproductive) speculations of casino capitalism.
This is a recipe for disaster.We should not forget that the capitalist crisis of the 1930s was finally 'solved' only by war.Positive alternatives are not easy to build or even visualize today . But we must persevere -- for the present world order has no future.If we project its growth scenarios -- of consumption, resource use, waste and pollution -- even a few decades into the future, it becomes clear that we are being led up a blind alley.
Jakob von Uexkull

Statement by von Uexkull to the Knesset in defense of Mordechai Vanunu
First People Of The Kalahari/Roy Sesana
Right Livelihood Awards

Survival International


Schwarzenegger Fires Flood Control Panel

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Tuesday fired all six members of the state Reclamation Board, an agency that oversees flood control along California's two biggest rivers and had recently become more aggressive about slowing development on flood plains.
Nancy Vogel/LATimes/KTLA 27.09.05
link Rough and Tumble
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger replaced the board of the state's top flood-control agency just as the agency began a more aggressive program to review building plans in flood-prone areas.
The seven-member board oversees a 1,600-mile network of flood control levees, most of them located in the Central Valley. Members serve at the pleasure of the governor and the six members replaced Tuesday were appointed or reappointed by former Gov. Gray Davis. There was one vacancy on the board.
None of those replaced were given any explanation by Schwarzenegger's office, according to board president Betsy Marchand.
"There was no communication about why the entire board was removed," said Marchand, a member since 2001. "And we were really beginning to make a lot of progress too, in bringing out the dangers of living behind - and allowing development - behind old agricultural levees because the public is not aware of it."
Tom Chorneau/SFGate

FBI page on the Monkees
Sanders: "Yes. I was always too shy to read my FBI files and I finally read through them. Well, you live your own life."
Ed Sanders interview by Lisa Jarnot/poetry project at saint marks
John Lennon FBI files
Lennon's FBI files at Smoking Gun
Bertolt Brecht's FBI files
"J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI had a great interest in Sinatra. His FBI file, which was recently declassified runs to nearly 13,000 pages, making Sinatra the most investigated entertainer in America.
To view Sinatra's FBI file click on the link below:
Sinatra's FBI file
To view my index of Sinatra's FBI file click on the link below:
Index of Sinatra's FBI file"
(links broken, google cache)
Woody Guthrie's FBI file (pdf, 2 parts, part 1 - 55 pages, part 2 - 64 pages)
"Bob Dylan's FBI file"


A seeming consistency of unfortunate oddities:

According to inmates interviewed by Human Rights Watch, they had no food or water from the inmates' last meal over the weekend of August 27-28 until they were evacuated on Thursday, September 1. By Monday, August 29, the generators had died, leaving them without lights and sealed in without air circulation. The toilets backed up.
"They left us to die there," Dan Bright, an Orleans Parish Prison inmate told Human Rights Watch at Rapides Parish Prison, where he was sent after the evacuation.
As the water began rising on the first floor, prisoners became anxious and then desperate. Some of the inmates were able to force open their cell doors, helped by inmates held in the common area. All of them, however, remained trapped in the locked facility.
"The water started rising, it was getting to here," said Earrand Kelly, an inmate from Templeman III, as he pointed at his neck. "We was calling down to the guys in the cells under us, talking to them every couple of minutes...
Human Rights Watch 22.09.05
link ProRev
England was found guilty on six counts on Monday. All include the language of "wrongfully posing for a photograph." The publication of these images early in 2004 caused major damage to America's image.
Asked by one of her lawyers about a photo of her baby with an American flag, England replied, "I'm still patriotic, ma'am, very much."
By contrast, Graner, who is serving a 10-year sentence for abuses at the prison outside Baghdad, did not show any repentance earlier in the day and said he was acting on behalf of U.S. military intelligence.
"Sir, I nearly beat a military intelligence detainee to death with military intelligence there," Graner, 37, told the court. "We treated each military detainee specifically on how the handler wanted."
Reuters 28.09.05


Oddities that make unfortunate sense:

The Pentagon reportedly bought 313 million rounds of 5.56mm, 7.62mm and 50-calibre ammunition last year and paid $10m (about 5.5m pounds) more than it would have cost for it to produce the ammunition at its own facilities.
Independent UK
Cold weather has killed 30 people in isolated, wind-swept Mongolia where temperatures plummeted from a warm 23 degrees Celsius on Friday to below zero, local media said.
Most of the victims in the capital, Ulan Bator, were found over the weekend on the streets and at bus stops, the Daily News said.
Ulan Bator is notorious for its street children, many of them living under manholes to keep warm near the Soviet-era water pipes through the bitter winters.
Alcohol abuse among the homeless in the city and across the vast steppe is also widespread and may have been a factor in the deaths, the newspaper said, adding that the victims were aged between 25 and 45.
The seizure of the surveillance team outside the station lit the touchpaper.
Independent UK
Senior aides of Sadr, who twice led bloody uprisings against American forces in the south last year, sought to capitalise on a rumour that has gained widespread acceptance in Basra that the two men were Israeli spies caught trying to plant bombs.
Abdel Hadi al-Daraji, the cleric's top official in his main bastion, the sprawling Sadr City slums of Baghdad, told The Daily Telegraph that Britain was plotting to start an ethnic war by carrying out mass-casualty bombings targeting Shia civilians and then blaming the attacks on Sunni Arab groups.
"Everyone knows the occupiers' agenda," insisted Mr Daraji, who is currently the only Mahdi army official authorised to speak directly on Sadr's behalf.
Telegraph UK
In a debate, hosted by former US President Bill Clinton in New York, Blair said he was not hopeful of another major agreement on targets to reduce emissions of the greenhouse gases blamed for climate change.
Instead, he talked enthusiastically about focusing on technology-led solutions, the process favoured by America, Japan, China and India, but rejected by environmental campaigners and other leaders, including Britain's own minister responsible for climate change.
He also back-tracked on his previous insistence that tackling climate change would not damage economic growth, warning 'no country is going to cut its growth or consumption substantially' - a phrase that echoes anti-Kyoto arguments of President George Bush.
Observer UK
Mr Blair always keeps a grey velvet pouch in his breast pocket. It contains a small piece of red ribbon and a piece of rolled-up paper. Even his closest advisers do not know its significance, but he cannot operate without it.
Telegraph UK


175 innovative and replicable experiences (good practices) for sustainable urban mobility developed by local authorities in particular within the European Mobility Week and "In town without my car!" initiatives
SMILE Project
From 16th to 22nd September 2005 European citizens will have the opportunity to enjoy a full week of events dedicated to sustainable mobility. The objective is to facilitate widespread debate on the necessity for changes in behaviour in relation to mobility and in particular the use of the private car. As usual, the Car Free Day will be the highlight of the whole Week.
European Mobility Week
Car Free Day at Urban Photo
World Car-Free Days Collaborative
Recycling Council of Ontario's car statistics
85 percent of auto fuel is consumed just to overcome inertia and start the wheels turning
2.5 times more emissions are generated by SUVs and light trucks than by standard cars
Josh Sevin/Grist Magazine
link biz china on AZN - newscaster mentioned Asian cities observing September 22 No Cars Day.
Not here in the US, though, people are too busy ducking the by-products of auto-worship.
Stories on the Weather Channel of people stuck 12 hours in parking-lot-style freeway jams, trying to evacuate ahead of Rita, running out of gas and abandoning their cars...


Doctor says FEMA ordered him to stop treating hurricane victims

The Exclusive Brethren

beauty products from the skin

When formally approached by the Guardian, the agent denied the company was using skin harvested from executed prisoners. However, he had already admitted it was doing precisely this during a number of conversations with a researcher posing as a Hong Kong businessman. The Press Complaints Commission's code of practice permits subterfuge if there is no other means of investigating a matter of public interest.
Ian Cobain and Adam Luck/GuardianUK 13.Sep.05

In all my trials recently - the thick despair and the dull weight of what seems a futile attempt to carry on - the Celtic spirituality of Noreen has been an emerald light in the colorless dark.


Maybe it's time to wonder harder, stranger, deeper.
Like Haiti. What was the importance of Haiti to the empire? Why Haiti? Voudoun? Could it be?
And New Orleans more than any other city in the country had that "other" vibe, not like you'd think at first, Las Vegas, which is a subsidiary of the controlling presence, its vice expressed before a one-way mirror that hides, not Satan, but something closer to a Mormon bishop - New Orleans was independent.
I remember through the opiate fog that week seeing Bush on FOX or CNN talking wryly, almost grimly, about New Orleans being where he'd often gone to "party" down.
Under the circumstances, with so many people under the spell of a religion that's being made up while they kneel toward its heart, it might not be unthinkable to suggest that there's a consistency of intent revealed somehow, and that it is a most strange and inhuman intent.
The compassion and mercy of Jesus bowdlerized from the script entirely now, the harsh inscrutable "will of God" at work, merciless to all but the chosen and elect.
I'm torn most days between two visions of Bush - as someone possessed, Manchurian, the latest iteration of mind-control graduate - and of someone who's simply duped, convinced that all that matters now is the pragmatic, and trusting a smarter, "higher" intelligence that stays comfortably ahead of anything he can figure out on his own.
Either way I know without any doubt that what this is is so much bigger than what we can see of it that his being there, or being removed from there, means little.
But what is it, in back of him, what does it want?


Reconciling this:

Global warming 'past the point of no return'
Steve Connor/Independent UK 17.Sep.05

with this:
Why people hate fat Americans
Daniel Ben-Ami/Spiked 09.Sep.05

or trying to reconcile them, more accurately - produces something I thought was cognitive dissonance, but now evidently needs to be described as something else.
There's a dissonance there for sure, though.
And I think hidden somewhere out at the edges of it a proof of other worlds and existences.
But this is hellish.


Karma for the thing you thought I was

I'm out of the hospital, back at home. Broke etc.
I seem to have signed the rest of my life over to some health-care enforcement agency called RISARC. Or maybe not. I didn't read much of the fine print they handed me, along with a memorized spiel they get mean if you interrupt before they finish (because it's the law), I didn't see much choice in signing or not, so I did.
I did a bunch of pain meds while I was in there, morphine of course, but I tapered off that on my own, which I thought was a good thing to accomplish considering the awfulness and hopelessness of my spot - and Norco, which I never heard of til last week was more effective then morphine at actually stopping the pain of the fracture/surgery. Morphine made me feel better but the Norco, which is I guess just twice-stronger Vicodin, stopped the pain.
I self-weaned off that too, tapering until the last night when I had a little party of two at a time every four hours, as I was getting most angst-ridden and grim about what was to come.
I've got Vicodin by the handful now but I'm sticking to one or two at most a day for now.
I do enjoy the opiate calm and that pleasant sense it brings, of rightness in all things, but I have to make some hard decisions that are coming as clearly as I can make them.
Morphine visions:
A pyramid made out of blocks of California hill landscape, golden dry grass and scrub-oak, manzanita etc... alive and growing but geometrically laid out with indented lines all through it like the real ones.
A vortex made from parquet wooden tiles, so what I saw was a really large basketball gym floor, and a smooth curved lip, an oval about 40 feet by 20 feet wide that led down to an unseen darkness, tiled all the way in T&G with that waxed brilliance of gym floors.
I kept seeing these little holes, which later I thought might be my body reporting on the screws that were in there, plus Doctor King, the surgeon, said he drilled for a lag screw but it didn't take. So there may be a hole down there. I don't know.
I watched way too much TV these last two weeks, but I'm grateful for the enlightening presence at one point of Joel Osteen and the Dalai Lama on Larry King's CNN talk show.
King mumbled a couple of times how much he respected the D.L. but he never really apologized for the technical glitches that made the conversation seem alien and incompetent on the D.L.'s part.
After each question, the Dalai Lama stared at the camera for way long, then sometimes seemed to be replying to something else then stopping. Then dead air. Way too much dead air.
In contrast Osteen was superbly telegenic.
It was another mage-battle, and the forces of darkness own the studios and all the transmission equipment.
Osteen reminds me of so many rich kids I've known, innocent and full in the way they inhabit their lives and their worlds, but they can't let themselves see how circumscribed those worlds are, how limited to the safe and controllable their input has been all their lives.
The debutante in Richmond in 1853.
They see the rightness, the fitness of their triumph, their position, their privilege, and anything that falls to that must be inferior. The falling being all the proof you need as to their inferiority.
It isn't racism anymore, it's "loserism".
Compassion is a lapdog in that house, yapping and running around, but small and ornamental, a pet.
The D.L. spoke, in the context of speaking about the Katrina/aftermath, the word "suffering" with the most psychedelically profound emphasis I have ever heard a human being use outside a peyote circle.
It made my hair stand up.
There were all these un-understood bits from King to the D.L. and King just let them sit, then expressed his impatience and cut to Osteen, who appeared to be beating the D.L. without even competing with him. Except for once at the beginning, in a clear message of Christian separation from anything Tibetan Buddhism has to give the world, Osteen never even related to the D.L.'s presence with him on the show.
Two women were allowed to ask questions of the D.L., one in that smarmy neurotic voice of opportunism announcing to the televised millions that she herself was a reincarnate 12th century Lama, the other a more sophisticated but artificial set-up question about meditation as something to be done on top of charity and acts of mercy.
All in all it was a total takedown for fundamentalist Christianity. And Larry King was right in there, making it happen.
Like I say, he never apologized, never spoke directly to the consistent tech problems, so the numb-brains and the minor league demon-lovers all saw their power transcending.
Osteen was his usual self, brilliant, glowing, filled with a loving spirit, but as shallow as a fruit basket.
It's very hard to tell people who worship only what gives them what they want anything, especially anything they don't want to hear, unless you have what they want.
But given even Zizek's smart prattling about pantheism and animalism and buddhism, and his neo-Marxist post-theoretical embrace of Christianity, and the general embrace of fundamentalism by nearly everyone in the forefront of Media America, I think it's a little bizarre that King threw Osteen and the D.L. together.
Later there was a news story about protestors at Hong Kong Disney. It had images of these huge bars, like on a bull paddock, and these tiny little dark-haired partial faces peaking through. Then images of neat and clean Disney amusements.
The news-person said the protestors had "set up shop" outside Disney's new theme park.
Later Mike Leavitt, the Secretary of H&HS, compared the devastation in New Orleans to the Yellowstone Fire - the awfulness slowly replaced with shoots of green and a gradual rebirth of the cycles of life.
I'm sure he meant well. Probably he feels that it is a comforting thing to say.
It is in some ways. It's just that you need to get the Darwin-O-Meter out.
Some of us see the benign complicity of "God's Will" and studied neglect in the New Orleans event.
Not gas chambers so much as predictable inevitable vortices of removal.
When the plagues come, it won't be much different. The elect will survive in greater number than the undeserving, and this is the way it should be, in Joel Osteen's world, and in many people's.
Not in mine.
Resist evil.


It's true what it says here, that "The picture is of his trailer home where he lives with his mother", although it's not as precise as saying "where he lives with his mother who is dying". And she has since died, on August 9.
3 weeks later I was nearing some kind of adjustment to the grief and turning toward the demands of my life now, recovering from the intensity of her dying, which I was the only caregiver for, up until literally the last hours.
I've now broken my leg, the fibula down by the ankle. It's a serious fracture requiring surgery.
I have no insurance, no job, so that means trusting to the absolute bottom care available. And endless hours in waiting rooms.
Tomorrow I go in for the surgery. When I get out, on Monday, my ability to walk and run is going to depend entirely on the healing I'm able to do, while I try to put together something to pay the rent and put food in the kitchen.
So posting will be light for a while.


Similarly when the first convoy of national guardsmen went into New Orleans approached the convention centre they were ordered to "lock and load".
But when they arrived they were confronted not by armed mobs but a nurse wearing a T-shirt that read "I love New Orleans".
"She ran down a broken escalator, then held her hands in the air when she saw the guns," wrote the LA Times.
Gary Younge/Guardian UK 06.09.05

"Sgt. Paul Accardo was found dead last Saturday, in an unmarked police car. The officer, who served as a chief spokesperson for the New Orleans Police Department, committed suicide sometime last week."


Once I discovered it, I hit the AFP news image site every day, starting back in early '03. The images were consistently fine, artistically and narratively, concise and aesthetic. Some time this spring they changed from a .jpg pop-up to a flash presentation where you can't grab the images without a screen capture, and they roll by on their own, you can only look at them for a couple seconds. The quality of the images themselves has remained high, though the aesthetic now is cheaper and more superficial, closer to Murdoch's FOX, and the narrative aspect has disappeared altogether.
The other French news site I hit with some regularity was Nouvel Observateur's photos du jour, they still have the same format they've always had, .jpg's in a pop-up, but their content was never as consistently artistic, and the editorial narrative is closer to being a french version of yahoo or Reuters. Some time ago I noticed that this man, Nicolas Sarkozy, formerly the Minister of Finance, currently the Minister of Interior, was being presented with regularity and increasing frequency at p. du j.. It had the same feel as the subliminal media presentations of Bush and the other pre-ordained officials in the US, as they were chauffered into office. Inevitable, a fait accompli.
At the same time that AFP underwent their site redesign Sarkozy began appearing there with much higher frequency, and in a more flattering light than he had before.
Though that may have subsided by now, I don't know, I quit checking in some time ago.

On January 23, France's National Assembly passed Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy's Internal Security Law, which had been in preparation since late September of last year. As in its previously proposed versions, the law gives police the option of intimidating poor neighborhoods with draconian sentencing and dramatically strengthens police powers. Ruling circles are also using the law to incite nationalism and generally spread the reactionary atmosphere created by the media cult around Sarkozy
Sarkozy has easily dealt with the half-hearted opposition of the left wing of the bourgeois establishment, but the opposition of the working class is another matter. Sarkozy's ridiculous populist pretensions and his claims to be working for the good of average working Frenchmen show that he is aware of the massive popular opposition to the type of police repression that he actually is preparing.
Alex Lefebvre/WSWS 30.01.03
When Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected governor of California in 2003, all French politicians sneered, except one. For Nicolas Sarkozy, the leader of a center-right Gaullist party and the son of a Hungarian refugee, the rise to power of the Austrian-born Hollywood star was a sure sign of modernity.
Marc Perelman/Foreign Policy 07.05
...a significant gap between the ways in which George W. Bush and John Kerry approached the delicate matter of politics and religion. Bush was comfortable proclaiming his faith as an integral, if not the most essential, aspect of his life. Kerry, on the other hand, was considerably more reticent. Much of his rhetoric seemed to suggest that American politics is simply a secular affair, in which all political claims derived from religious teaching are prima facie illegitimate, because values cannot or should not be imposed on others who do not share them. These two Americans are poles apart regarding the manner in which they discuss religion and politics, and their disparity highlights the increasing differences with which American conservatives and American liberals and most Europeans view the role of religion in public life.
On the other side of the Atlantic, Nicolas Sarkozy, formerly France's interior minister and minister of finance, who was recently overwhelmingly elected as leader of France's major center-right political party, is causing a stir with his singular understanding of this question. His new book, La Republique, les religions, l'esperance (The Republic, religions, and hope), is being touted as a quasi-revolutionary document that seeks to redefine relations between religion and politics in France. In it he unveils his "personal sentiments," the result of his experience in political life, condensed and revealed in a series of interviews.
Timothy Lehmann/Policy Review Online
Nicolas Sarkozy, France's ambitious interior minister and head of the ruling UMP party, on Sunday blatantly threw down the gauntlet to rivals for the presidency in 2007 - even as his fiercest political opponent, President Jacques Chirac, lay in hospital recovering from a "minor vascular accident".
The famously robust 72-year-old president, fond of beer and rich food, was admitted to the Val de Grace military hospital on Friday night after suffering blurred vision and headaches.
Mr Chirac is expected to remain in hospital for a week for tests. On Sunday doctors said test results so far were "very satisfactory" and he was reported to be working from his hospital bed.
But Mr Sarkozy, hosting a UMP youth rally in the seaside town of La Baule, unashamedly seized the opportunity to launch himself into the race to succeed Mr Chirac.
MSN Money 04.09.05
In-depth pro-Sarkozy hype from TIME Europe October 2004

Telegraph UK - Nicolas Sarkozy: "We have to act against radical preachers!"

BBC News - Tony Blair on Sarkozy as the foreign leader who impresses him most.

Charles Trueheart on "this unusual force of nature" in The Atlantic/Financial Review


"The bloodthirsty barbarians, having tasted blood, continued their hunt and soon ran across an old man of seventy-five years. His life had been spent in hard work about the French market, and he was well known as an unoffending, peaceable and industrious old man.
But that made no difference to the mob. He was a Negro, and with a fiendishness that was worse than that of cannibals they beat his life out. The report says:

There was another gang of men parading the streets in the lower part of the city, looking for any stray Negro who might be on the streets. As they neared the corner of Dauphine and Kerlerec, a square below Esplanade Avenue, they came upon Baptiste Thilo, an aged Negro, who works in the French Market.
Thilo for years has been employed by the butchers and fish merchants to carry baskets from the stalls to the wagons, and unload the wagons as they arrive in the morning. He was on his way to the market, when the mob came upon him. One of the gang struck the old Negro, and as he fell, another in the crowd, supposed to be a young fellow, fired a shot. The bullet entered the body just below the right nipple.
As the Negro fell the crowd looked into his face and they discovered then that the victim was very old. The young man who did the shooting said: "Oh, he is an old Negro. I'm sorry that I shot him."
This is all the old Negro received in the way of consolation.
He was left where he fell, but later staggered to his feet and made his way to the third precinct station. There the police summoned the ambulance and the students pronounced the wound very dangerous. He was carried to the hospital as rapidly as possible.
There was no arrest.


In its description of the scenes of Tuesday night, the Picayune mentions the brutal chase of several colored men whom the mob sought to kill. In the instances mentioned, the paper said:
Gretna had its full share of excitement between 8 and 11 o'clock last night, in connection with a report that spread through the town that a Negro resembling the slayer of Police Captain Day, of New Orleans, had been seen on the outskirts of the place.

It is true that a suspicious-looking Negro was observed by the residents of Madison and Amelia Streets lurking about the fences of that neighborhood just after dark, and shortly before 8 o'clock John Fist, a young white man, saw the Negro on Fourth Street. He followed the darkey a short distance, and, coming upon Robert Moore, who is known about town as the "black detective," Fist pointed the Negro out and Moore at once made a move toward the stranger. The latter observed Moore making in his direction, and, without a word, he sped in the direction of the Brooklyn pasture, Moore following and firing several shots at him. In a few minutes a half hundred white men, including Chief of Police Miller, Constable Dannenhauer, Patrolman Keegan and several special officers, all well-armed, joined in the chase, but in the darkness the Negro escaped.
Just as the pursuing party reached town again, two of the residents of Lafayette Avenue, Peter Leson and Robert Henning, reported that they had just chased and shot at a Negro, who had been seen in the yard of the former's house. They were positive the Negro had not escaped from the square. Their report was enough to set the appetite of the crowd on edge, and the square was quickly surrounded, while several dozens of men, armed with lanterns and revolvers, made a search of every yard and under every house in the square. No Negro was found.

The crowd of armed men was constantly swelling, and at 10 o'clock it had reached the proportions of a small army. At 10:30 o'clock an outbound freight train is due to pass through Gretna on the Texas and Pacific Road, and the crowd, believing that Captain Day's slayer might be aboard one of the cars attempting to leave the scene of his crime, resolved to inspect the train. As the train stopped at the Madison Street crossing the engineer was requested to pull very slowly through the town, in order that the trucks of the cars might be examined. There was a string of armed men on each side of the railroad track and in a few moments a Negro was espied riding between two cars. A half dozen weapons were pointed at him and he was ordered to come out. He sprang out with alacrity and was pounced upon almost before he reached the ground. Robert Moore grabbed him and pushed an ugly-looking Derringer under his nose and the Negro threw up both hands. Constable Dannenhauer and Patrolman Keegan took charge of him and hustled him off to jail, where he was locked up. The Negro does not at all resemble Robert Charles, but it was best for his sake that he was placed under lock and key. The crowd was not in a humor to let any Negro pass muster last night. The prisoner gave his name as Luke Wallace.

But now came the real excitement. The train had slowed down almost to a standstill, in the very heart of town. Somebody shouted: "There he goes, on top of the train!" And sure enough, somebody was going. It was a Negro, too, and he was making a bee-line for the front end of the train. A veritable shower of bullets, shot and rifle balls greeted the flying form, but on it sped. The locomotive had stopped in the middle of the square between La voisier and Newton Streets, and the Negro, flying with the speed of the wind along the top of the cars, reached the first car of the train and jumped to the tender and then into the cab. As he did several white men standing at the locomotive made a rush into the cab. The Negro sprang swiftly out of the other side, on to the sidewalk. But there were several more men, and as he realized that he was rushing right into their arms he made a spring to leap over the fence of Mrs. Linden's home, on the wood side of the track. Before the Negro got to the top one white man had hold of his legs, while another rushed up, pistol in hand. The man who was holding the darkey's legs was jostled out of the way and the man with the pistol, standing directly beneath the Negro, sent two bullets at him.

There was a wild scramble, and the vision of a fleeing form in the Linden yard, but that was the last seen of the black man. The yard was entered and searched, and neighboring yards were also searched, but not even the trace of blood was found. It is almost impossible to believe that the Negro was not wounded, for the man who fired at him held the pistol almost against the Negro's body.

The shots brought out almost everybody - white - in town, and though there was nothing to show for the exciting work, except the arrest of the Negro, who doesn't answer the description of the man wanted, Gretna's male population had its little fun and felt amply repaid for all the trouble it was put to, and all the ammunition it wasted.

In the first place the New Orleans Times-Democrat, of July 25, calls Charles a "ravisher and a daredevil." It says that from all sources that could be searched "the testimony was cumulative that the character of the murderer, Robert Charles, is that of a daredevil and a fiend in human form." Then in the same article it says:
The belongings of Robert Charles which were found in his room were a complete index to the character of the man. Although the room and its contents were in a state of chaos on account of the frenzied search for clews by officers and citizens, an examination of his personal effects revealed the mental state of the murderer and the rancor in his heart toward the Caucasian race. Never was the adage, "A little learning is a dangerous thing," better exemplified than in the case of the negro who shot to death the two officers.

His room was searched, and the evidence upon which the charge that he was a desperado consisted of pamphlets in support of Negro emigration to Liberia. On his mantel-piece there was found a bullet mold and an outfit for reloading cartridges. There were also two pistol scabbards and a bottle of cocaine. The other evidences that Charles was a desperado the writer described as follows:

In his room were found negro periodicals and other "race" propaganda, most of which was in the interest of the negro's emigration to Liberia. There were Police Gazettes strewn about his room and other papers of a similar character. Well-worn textbooks, bearing his name written in his own scrawling handwriting, and well-filled copybooks found in his trunk showed that he had burnt the midnight oil, and was desirous of improving himself intellectually in order that he might conquer the hated white race. Much of the literature found among his chattels was of a superlatively vituperative character, and attacked the white race in unstinted language and asserted the equal rights of the Negro.
Charles was evidently the local agent of the Voice of Missions, a "religious" paper, published at Atlanta, as great bundles of that sheet were found. It is edited by one Bishop Turner, and seems to be the official organ of all haters of the white race. Its editorials are anarchistic in the extreme, and urge upon the negro that the sooner he realizes that he is as good as the white man the better it will be for him."

Robert Charles and His Fight to Death, the Story of His Life, Burning Human Beings Alive, Other Lynching Statistics

Ida B. Wells Barnett Aug. 21, 1900
Project Gutenberg
link Nicholas Patler/C-SPAN2


firsthand experience

Sam Smith NOLA links

"We are out here like pure animals," Issac Clark said.

"We've got people dying out here - two babies have died, a woman died, a man died," said Helen Cheek. "We haven't had no food, we haven't had no water, we haven't had nothing. They just brought us here and dropped us."
Tourist Debbie Durso of Washington, Mich., said she asked a police officer for assistance and his response was, "'Go to hell - it's every man for himself.'"
"This is just insanity," she said. "We have no food, no water ... all these trucks and buses go by and they do nothing but wave."

FEMA director Michael Brown said the agency just learned about the situation at the convention center Thursday and quickly scrambled to provide food, water and medical care and remove the corpses.

Allen Breed/AP-Yahoo 01.09.05

Chavez Blasts Bush, Offers Hurricane Aid

"Meanwhile, international leaders are joining the chorus of voices in this country saying that the government failed to prepare for a disaster it knew was imminent. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez blasted President Bush for waiting until after Hurricane Katrina hit the United States to end his vacation in Texas. At the same time, Chavez expressed sympathy for the storm's victims and repeated his offer to send aid workers to the devastated southern US states. Meanwhile, Citgo, the US subsidiary of Venezuela's state-owned oil giant, announced it would donate one million dollars to US aid organizations helping hurricane victims."

Democracy Now 01.09.05

"Toxic soup" scenario in New Orleans unlikely

paralysed by the order

Israel's defence minister has ruled that the man who shot dead four Israeli Arabs is not a terrorist, because he is Jewish. The decision means that the families do not receive the compensation as family members of people classed as victims of terrorism. The laws governing compensation only recognise terrorism as being perpetrated by "organisations hostile to Israel".
Ariel Sharon had previously described the act as "a despicable act by a bloodthirsty terrorist," and The Jerusalem Post described the gunman as a "Jewish far-Right fanatic".
The families will receive a lump sum instead of a lifelong payment. Arab Israeli leaders described the law as racist.

Wikinews 01.09.05

Notes, evolution:

The so-called anti-evolution position isn't accurately described as that. What they're really after is the elimination of the information. They're anti-knowing about evolution.
They don't want the larger thing, the group mind, whatever, to become aware of its own shaping processes.
A child whose mind is being molded in an educational setting and is unaware of that as process, who's never thought to himself "I am being trained, taught, I'm being shaped by these teachers." As opposed to a child who sits listening to someone he knows is trying to shape his mind, and his future. It impedes the flow, and lessens the ability to control.
This is easier to see once you've gotten the difference between an evolution of exterior forces, the environment, predators, diseases etc.
And an evolution of interior forces, the marketplace, the culture, institutions, moral and legal systems etc.
We've been trained not to see that as evolutionary, but of course it is. The next step in that chain of illusions is to see it as evolutionary, but appropriate.
Anyone who's benefiting, or is promised to benefit, from the way things are, will see that as appropriate and good.
And that's pretty much right where the neo-cons began their assault on America and the world.

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