Tag Archives: Direct Action

HB 194 – The “Life Begins at Conception” bill just killed by full house vote.

Yeah! Feel that triumph!  Now, get ready for the next battle!

We have a report from the chambers that the full house just voted to go with the recommendation of the Judiciary to kill HB 194 as “ITL”, that is “Inexpedient to Legislate”.

Of course this only means we beat the enemy back into the dog house for the moment.  They will collect their respective selves, lick their wounds and come back once again next session.  This strategy, now employed continuously, consists of them beating the wall of reason until it crumbles or until at least enough of us aren’t looking and leave the door open for them to get through to their victory.

We can’t let it happen, we must always work together, share power, share strength to collectively overcome not only these continual assaults on basic freedoms, but also to undo the system that allows this insult to intelligence and justice to continue.

Please refer back to our previous post here for reference on the other assaults on women’s rights going on presently in the house.  We’ll try to update you as we can and encourage our readers to chime in if we’ve missed something.

Five NH House Bills That Should Concern Smart Women and Men

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Manchester Marches for Mike Brown

Folks in the city of Manchester and surrounding areas disgusted with the grand jury verdict have decided to make their voices heard.

 Michael Brown is seen on a tie worn by his father during the funeral

Photo from Reuters news service, mourners at Micheal Brown’s funeral.

 

On Saturday at 1:00 pm people will meet at Veteran’s Park to possibly do a small march and some sharing as well about their thoughts about the murder of Mike Brown and the fact that his murderer has been set free.

Veteran’s Park is located downtown on Elm Street between Central and Merrimack Streets. There will be plenty of parking around on Elm, Central and Merrimack Street.

Bring your friends, bring signs that express your outrage and be ready to express your outrage at this latest injustice against innocent citizens in this country.

For more information please see the Facebook event page at:

Manchester Marches for Mike Brown

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So Lab Rats are Smarter Than Libertarians

Lab rat works to free captive where no obvious capital incentive exists.

Empathy: the one human emotion that makes Ayn Rand roll in her grave and gives all Free Staters and other Libertarians the willies — except when their own necks are on the line and they could use a hand.  It is well known that Ayn Rand had no problem living off the empathy of those who came before her and struggled for her right to receive social security and Medicare benefits in her old age.  Regardless though, Libertarians continue to preach that the way to peace is just to be a self centered prick and not bother to worry about the consequences of your actions on others, or to stop and help others.

Of course, according to this study, proof exists that lab rats are smarter than Libertarians, since they’ve apparently figured out that helping out your friends and neighbors and even sharing your booty is a good thing for your own future welfare; we all need each other and more than likely sometime down the line you will need others to give a damn about you when you and be willing to work to make your life — and in turn their life, better.  What a concept! Sounds like socialism!

Let’s take that thought a little further down the road of Logic and Plain Simple Thinking (deserves capitalization since its so under-rated these days), cut a little with Occam’s Razor and viola! We come across this excellent animation from Upworthy, made by Roman Krznaric on the power of empathy as a force for human change.  A very good animation and talk on the power of human empathy; what it means and how has a natural human emotion, we all have the ability to harness this to make positive social change and work toward peace, locally and globally.

Enjoy:

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Wal-Mart Actions Around New Hampshire

Protesters in Manchester on South Willow Street on Black Friday.

Actions against the employment practices of Wal-Mart happened in three locations in the state this past Friday after Thanksgiving — known as “Black Friday”.

Activists from Occupy NH, Occupy Seacoast, the I.W.W. union and Occupy North Country set up protests, handed out flyers and in one instance, reportedly clashed with local police.

In Manchester participant Mark Provost said, “People were generally positive, honking their horns, waving their fists in solidarity, the jig is up, people know what is going on.”

In Somersworth, NH

In Somersworth Occupy the Seacoast held a protest outside the store in the morning, according to David Holt, “9 put of 10 people that reacted to us when we were outside were positive, gave us the thumbs up or honked and waved in support.”  David said that the group also went inside Wal-Mart with their signs, “We walked thru the Walmart with our signs and the management tried to herd us out, they called the police but we were gone before they showed up.”

When they were outside David said, “One cop pulled over in a cruiser and rolled down the window and we weren’t sure what he would say but he said he was behind us 100%.” Of the numbers of people in Occupy David said, “We had a wide range of people that had never come to an occupy event before, one of the people event printed up pamphlets and handed them out about what Walmart does.”

Some reported that an individual had a clash with the police in Littleton, but that person has asked not to speak to the press, so no further information is available at this time.

More about the action in Somersworth from the Foster’s Daily Democrat: Demonstrators in Somersworth Call for Changes at Wal-Mart

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British Unions Shut Down London With Strikes – Over 700,000 March

Image from Washington Post online slideshow

Nearly 800,000 union workers in Britain converged in London on yesterday to demand that the government end its austerity measures.  Similar to other unrest in Spain, Portugal and Greece and across the Atlantic in the US last year, Britian’s workers demand an end to the distribution re arrangement policies dubbed “austerity measures” by the press and politicians.

In favor of the conglomeration of capital among elite global finance and banking interests worldwide, government worldwide have proposed cutting public social safety nets.  The obvious effort to turn the world’s workers into pools of low-wage labor has met with resistance across America and Europe and now Brit workers take their turn to be heard.  In the rally labor leaders call for a general strike.  In addition, as Real News reports, London and other EU countries have November 14th in their sights for a continent wide day of action against austerity.

The Real News has posted a video and report:

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XL Pipeline TransCanada uses SLAPP Suits to Bully Protesters

Police arrest and unchain a blockader from a backhoe on the XL construction site.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the Trailbreaker page:

“As the Winnsboro, Texas tree blockade enters its fourth week, over 50 blockaders publicly demonstrated on the Keystone XL easement despite the threat of a newly-expanded Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation (SLAPP) by TransCanada and egregious criminal overcharges by local law enforcement. Here’s a photo of our spokesperson, Ron Seifert, holding the stack of legal papers we just got served.https://i0.wp.com/tarsandsblockade.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/We-got-served_Small.jpg

Due to the SLAPP suits’ outrageous claims, the tree blockaders have by-and-large felt too threatened to safely reveal their identities, despite their protest being nonviolent. Today’s defiant walk-on protest is the largest in the history of protests surrounding Keystone XL construction sends a clear signal that we will not be deterred by SLAPP suits and other legal threats to limit our civil liberties.”

SLAPP suits (acronym meaning Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) are specifically designed as tools to use the court system to prevent action of defendants that the plaintiff (the person bringing the suit)  find objectionable.  Historically SLAPPS have been used by companies or famous individuals to suppress negative press about them or their company.

Lately though, corporations that find themselves under attack by civic groups and non-profit public interest organizations have started using SLAPPs in an effort to stop the groups actions.  One of the distinguishing features of a SLAPP is that the content of the suit itself usually contains vague language, references to wide spread claims of financial injury, requests for redress in large sums of money and demands for the court to issue injunctions against the defendants to get them to stop their activities.

Since free speech is a protected right, the desired outcome of the SLAPP, while loaded with legal claims such as defamation of character, obstruction of free trade, emotional injury or distress, the real objective of the lawsuit is to first intimidate the defendant, especially by requesting monetary damage awards similar to a tort (a suit asking for redress for actual damages through monetary award).  The idea is that the suing party (plaintiff) hopes to scare the defendant which large monetary damage requests and complicated legalese.

As in the example with the TransCanada XL pipe line protesters, SLAPP filings can be quite large, creating a costly burden for the defense — someone has to read and process all that.

Many states outlaw the use of SLAPPs but more conservative judges have demonstrated more sympathy to business interests and less toward citizen action.  Some states such as California offer immediate redress against SLAPPs by offering the right to a speedy hearing and the right to demand consideration of dismissal under anti-SLAPP rules.

But no matter what state laws or judge’s sympathies may prevail, someone’s time and energy must go into defending against these cases.  Many SLAPP suits can continue on repeatedly for years, reflecting the power imbalance of low-fund or no-fund citizen’s groups against the bottomless pit of funds that large trans-national corporations like TransCanada possess.  TransCanada’s monetary reserves, like those of many other large corporations challenged by citizen’s groups, an sustain its SLAPP activities for a long time, thus achieving the greater goal of getting the group to give up out of sheer exhaustion of their funds.

While many people like to think of non-profit groups as running a tight ground campaign, money runs the wheels in our society and in the case of XL, the money to fight the protests runs deep.  On the positive side, protesters have challenged SLAPPs and won not only their day in court, but have had the entire cases thrown out.

Currently protesters are in jail and more will be expected to be jailed in this action.  Everyone’s help is vital.  You can contribute to the costs incurred by those standing on the front line in defense of our environment and public safety.

As the site says, “Six of the eight arrested today have been released from jail on charges of criminal trespass which is a class C misdemeanor. The bail was $1,500 each, a total of $9,000. The two blockaders who locked themselves to Keystone XL machinery will see a judge in the morning.”

Go to the site and “give a generous donation to their bail fund” and also help to support their continued work and possibly any upcoming court proceedings or even to help with just regular logistics of this vital action.

Hog-tied protestor at XL site.

See more photos and breaking updates here: http://tarsandsblockade.org/9th-action/

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How Psychologists Subvert Democratic Movements

Here is a posting of a very good article on how the institution of psychiatry in America has fallen in the last few decades.  From a field that with psychology, at one time devolved from a practice that worked to support the quest for human peace of mind into an arm of the capitalist state.  The popularization of the use of drugs as a means to ‘correct’ anxiety and depression are based on the idea that there exists nothing inherently wrong with living in a system that is increasingly oppressive to most working people and children.

No doubt the profit-driven pharmacology sector has banked well on the popularity of fixing the individual instead of fixing the social problems the individual struggles with.  In addition, the practice of singling out individuals as opposed to looking at the inter-play of groups and social structures that individuals function under allows the continued dehumanization of state sanctioned capitalism to go unchecked and unanalyzed.

In this article a former practicing psychologist testifies to his first-hand witness of the use of drugs and individual therapy in the alienation and dismissal of dissent as an indicators of mental disease rather than being the proverbial canary in the coal-mine, warning of the increasingly oppressive economic and social conditions of our present day society.

How Psychologists Subvert Democratic Movements


By the 1980s, as a clinical psychology graduate student, it had become apparent to me that the psychology profession was increasingly about meeting the needs of the “power structure” to maintain the status quo so as to gain social position, prestige, and other rewards for psychologists.

 Academic psychology in the 1970s was by no means perfect. There was a dominating force of manipulative, control-freak behaviorists who appeared to get their rocks off conditioning people as if they were rats in a maze. However, there was also a significant force of people such as Erich Fromm who believed that an authoritarian and undemocratic society results in alienation and that this was a source of emotional problems. Fromm was concerned about mental health professionals helping people to adjust to a society with no thought to how dehumanizing that society had become. Back then, Fromm was not a marginalized figure; his ideas were taken seriously. He had bestsellers and had appeared on national television.

Read more…

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NYC – Not a Place to Stand, Walk, Talk, Move or Breath Without Arrest

Chris Faraone of the Boston Phoenix describes his experience as a guest of the NYPD while down for the Occupy Anniversary:

I wasn’t supposed to be sitting in a bar, my right elbow bent like a bastard, on the night of September 17, 2012. It was the anniversary of Occupy Wall Street – a movement I’ve been covering for about a year – and the plan was to be out in the streets, tweeting, taking pictures, and scribbling obscenities in my notepad. That’s what I do. I’m a reporter. It’s my fucking job.

But I wasn’t on the streets, recording so much senseless brutality. Instead I was a victim of it, having gotten viciously tackled and abused less than two hours after reporting for duty. I hardly planned for this; if I had, I would have left my weed at my motel. But having covered comparable actions in more than 20 American cities over the past year, I’ve learned how to get my story without getting bagged. Or so I thought.

For the rest: The Full Story of How A Boston Journalist Got Arrested on Some Bullshit at the Anniversary of Occupy Wall Street

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Protesters in Vermont Subdued with Pepper Spray and Rubber Bullets

Very good article written by Dylan Kelly on the Vermont Commons blog on the unexpected police action against protesters who gathered against Tar Sands at the Governor’s Conference in Burlington this past weekend. Continue reading at the site, link below…

Peaceful Protesters Put Down by Militarized Police Force

Burlington- Unprovoked, the Burlington Police Department opened fire on unarmed civilians with pepper spray, rubber bullets, and brutal force in order to crush dissent and political opposition to the Northeast Governor’s Conference in Burlington. In addition to Gov. Shumlin, the Conference was composed of Jean Charest, Premier of Quebec Province; and the Governors of New Hampshire, and Maine as well as numerous other delegates who gathered in Burlington to discuss regional economic and security issues.

Arriving in great numbers from locales as far afield as Connecticut, Northern Quebec, and New York City as well as turning out in droves from Burlington itself, the protesters were determined to bring issues such as natural resource extraction, affordable housing, student debt, indigenous peoples’ rights, and a wide array of other issues to the forefront of the conversation between regional elites.

Click here to continue reading at the Vermont Commons site.

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Not Just One Voice

Some Occupiers meeting for sandwiches after.

Since apparently some who opposed the Occupy NH break-off over the gun issue have attempted to point the finger at a few more outspoken Occupy NH participants, we have posted here some of the comments and statements of solidarity concerning the break-off decision:

Read the Declaration of Occupy Wall Street that Occupy New Hampshire resolved to stand in solidarity with.

We welcome you to submit your statement, we will transfer this over to the Occupy website once we have re-established one.

Why I decline attending the Occupy NH GA.

This issue of gun toting yahoos has gotten out of hand. I was a police officer from 1977-1980. I open carried a Smith and Wesson 357 magnum for purposes of protecting myself and the community from gun toters who would use them for their stated purpose. I trained and know how to use it for those purposes.

I equate the notion of carrying any such weapon on a bright and sunny Sunday to pure arrogance. Arrogance carries its own punishment. What goes around will always come around. An innocent teenager was killed in Florida last winter by this same arrogance. George Zimmerman is going to get what he deserves. I will not acknowledge this sham!

– Michael A. Joseph

The Choice for Occupy

As a gun owner and outspoken advocate of an armed population, I would like to clarify that my opposition to the Free State Project (an umbrella term I will use to represent all FSP, Anarcho-capitalists and related ideologies) does not rest upon their insistence that they will bring guns to the statehouse today.  My rejection of their twisted ideology is systemic and my call for them to be ejected from the Occupy movement in NH is without qualification.

The “gun issue”, as it has become known is but a convenient porthole which we can use to inspect and criticize the greater movement.  The fundamental insistence on the primacy of individual sovereignty will forever cause the group to reject making their individual wishes secondary to the community.  It is because of this fundamental tenet that the FSP can never stand in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street.

There are no solutions to the problems of the world we live in today which do not involve the combined work and sacrifice of all people toward the progress of humankind.  The degree of that sacrifice must be democratically determined by all people (and by people alone) and cannot be voluntary or subject to the trump of any individual.

It is for this reason that Occupy New Hampshire must not call for “change”, but must call for specific and pointed change that confronts and combats the myriad abuses of rampant greed and selfishness in our society.  It is praise for this selfishness, which Ayn Rand called “rational self-interest” which sits at the heart of the Objectivist worldview that informs modern Right-Libertarianism.

It is self-evident that a revolutionary movement cannot succeed by including those who disagree with the aims of that movement and who work against those aims.  There is no “common ground” in these circumstances because the mere inclusion of members of this ideology in the steering of that movement will limit the scope of that movement and prevent it from reaching its revolutionary potential.

For this reason, if Occupy New Hampshire does not issue a statement which sets itself clearly on a path opposed to selfish and abusive individualism, I can no longer participate in Occupy New Hampshire.  This will not be because I will abandon the movement, but because the movement will have abandoned solidarity with Occupy Wall Street, a worldwide movement of people struggling against greed, and the historic significance of this moment.

– Shawn Girard

Choosing Nonviolence

Originally I planned on going to the GA but then changed my mind when I saw the various feeds on FB blow up with gun language. I didn’t involve myself in the feeds because of the vitriol; I didn’t want to become a target. But I was convinced by respectful members of ONH to attend and it was the right decision.

Being surrounded by the armed citizenry was terrifying, more terrifying than being surrounded by thousands of police and their weapons of mass destruction, aggressively trained dogs and horses, LRADs, and snipers on rooftops. It more terrifying than being assaulted by the police as I was in Chicago. ONH members comforted me, helping me to ease my fear; not a single member of FSP tried to comfort me, to ease my anxiety. Rather, they strutted with their weapons, some out for all to see others (vaguely) concealed in attempts to intimidate ONH members into silence or compliance (I’m not sure which). Instead of actually engaging in dialogue, they brandished their weapons and dodged eye contact yet expected the peaceful to sit next to the armed as if we were all friends working toward the same goals.

I walked myself out out of imposed circle and sat across the lawn so I could observe from afar. I had to get away because I was afraid of my fellow “occupiers”, that is those who identify as FSP or are formulating that identity, of those with firearms strapped to their hips. I was not afraid in Chicago of my fellow Occupier. I found comfort from them, kinship. I did not find that with the FSPers today. I never have in the decade I’ve lived in this state, no matter how many I’ve met and engaged with Freestaters over the years.

What I saw today, their show of aggression and disrespect was deplorable on the part of the FSPers. Aggression and disrespect are not Occupy traits. I have sadness this occur because, like many Occupiers, I want peace and harmony and to work together building bridges. Whether the FSPers and Occupiers can work together has became moot.

I made my choice. I am comfortable with choosing peace and nonviolence. It is the choice I will *always* make.

– Michelle Cunha

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