Monday Music Video: Miner's Lullaby by Utah Phillips

Bruce "Utah" Phillips was a labor organizer, folk singer, storyteller, poet and the "Golden Voice of the Great Southwest". He is a great inspiration to my life. I saw Utah Phillips at the 2004 Winnipeg Folk Festival. I went to every workshop and show he played at. If it weren't for that Festival, I wouldn't have never seeked out the I.W.W. and, as such, would have never been introduced to anarchism.

Miner's Lullaby is one of my many favorite songs by Utah. I remember crying once while listening to this song, thinking about what it would be like if my wife was put into that kind of situation.

Weekend Emma: EMMA play trailer

A trailer for a video of a play about Emma Goldman by Howard Zinn. In this play, historian and playwright Howard Zinn dramatizes the life of Emma Goldman, the anarchist, feminist and free-spirited thinker who was exiled from the united states because of her outspoken views, including her opposition to World War One.

Friday Film: The Take

The Take is a Canadian documentary film released in 2004 by the wife and husband team of Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis. It tells the story of workers in Buenos Aires, Argentina who reclaim control of a closed Forja auto plant where they once worked and turn it into a worker cooperative, or as could be argued, a working model of anarcho-syndicalism.

The plant closed as a result of the economic policies of the Carlos Menem government under the watchful eye of the International Monetary Fund.

While in bankruptcy protection, the company appeared to be selling off property and inventory to pay creditors – a move which further reduced the chances of the facility returning to production. In an effort to establish their own control, the workers occupied the factory and began a long battle to win the right to operate it themselves, as a cooperative.

Wobbly Wednesday: Haiti's Tourniquet

For two weeks in late-April and early-May four members of the Industrial Workers of the World traveled to Haiti to meet with labor leaders and document the plight of the Haitian working class.

The I.W.W. delegation met with members of The Confederation of Haitian Workers (CTH) to learn about their fight against "le plan neoliberal" and recruit help in the form of material aid and solidarity. Haiti's Tourniquet is the film that came out of that delegation.

Check out the International Solidarity Commission of the IWW for more on Haiti and other international campigns.

Poetry Jam: Hadda Be Playing On The Jukebox by Allen Ginsberg

It had to be flashin’ like the daily double
It had to be playin’ on TV
It had to be loud mouthed on the comedy hour
It had to be announced over loud speakers

The CIA and the Mafia are in cahoots

It had to be said in old ladies’ language
It had to be said in American headlines
Kennedy stretched and smiled and got double crossed by lowlife goons and agents
Rich bankers with criminal connections
Dope pushers in CIA working with dope pushers from Cuba working with a
big time syndicate from Tampa, Florida
And it had to be said with a big mouth

It had to be moaned over factory foghorns
It had to be chattered on car radio news broadcasts
It had to be screamed in the kitchen
It had to be yelled in the basement where uncles were fighting

It had to be howled on the streets by newsboys to bus conductors
It had to be foghorned into New York harbor
It had to echo onto hard hats
It had to turn up the volume in university ballrooms

It had to be written in library books, footnoted
It had to be in the headlines of the Times and Le Monde
It had to be barked on TV
It had to be heard in alleys through ballroom doors

It had to be played on wire services
It had to be bells ringing
Comedians stopped dead in the middle of a joke in Las Vegas

It had to be FBI chief J. Edgar Hoover and Frank Costello syndicate
mouthpiece meeting in Central Park, New York weekends,
reported Time magazine

It had to be the Mafia and the CIA together starting war on Cuba,
Bay of Pigs and poison assassination headlines

It had to be dope cops in the Mafia
Who sold all their heroin in America

It had to be the FBI and organized crime working together
in cahoots against the commies

It had to be ringing on multinational cash registers
A world-wide laundry for organized criminal money

It had to be the CIA and the Mafia and the FBI together
They were bigger than Nixon
And they were bigger than war

It had to be a large room full of murder
It had to be a mounted ass- a solid mass of rage
A red hot head
A scream in the back of the throat

It had to be in Kissinger’s brain
It had to be in Rockefellers’ mouth
It had to be central intelligence, the family, all of this, the agency Mafia
It had to be organized crime

One big set of gangs working together in cahoots

Murderers everywhere

The secret
The drunk
The brutal
The dirty and rich

On top of a slag heap of prisons
Industrial cancer
Plutonium smog
Garbage cities

Grandmas’ bedsores, fathers’ resentment

It had to be the rulers
They wanted law and order
And they got rich on wanting protection for the status quo

They wanted junkies
They wanted Attica
They wanted Kent State
They wanted war in Indochina


It had to be the CIA and the Mafia and the FBI

Multinational capitalists
Strong armed squads
Private detective agencies for the oh so very rich
And their armies and navies and their air force bombing planes

It had to be capitalism
The vortex of this rage
This competition
Man to man

The horses head in a capitalists’ bed
The Cuban turf
It rumbles in hitmen
And gang wars across oceans

Bombing Cambodia settled the score when Soviet pilots
manned Egyptian fighter planes

Chiles’ red democracy
Bumped off with White House pots and pans

A warning to Mediterranean governments

The secret police have been embraced for decades

The NKPD and CIA keep each other’s secrets
The OGBU and DIA never hit their own
The KGB and the FBI are one mind

Brute force and full of money
Brute force, world-wide, and full of money
Brute force, world-wide, and full of money
Brute force, world-wide, and full of money
Brute force, world-wide, and full of money

It had to be rich and it had to be powerful
They had to murder in Indonesia 500,000
They had to murder in Indochina 2,000,000
They had to murder in Czechoslovakia
They had to murder in Chile
They had to murder in Russia

And they had to murder in America.

Monday Music Video: People of the Sun by Rage against the Machine

You couldn't be politically conscious person in the 90s without listening to Rage against the machine. They summed up musically the anger of youth growing up in the era after the collapse of the soviet union, the development globalization, and the hypocrisies of the Clinton presidency.

"People of the Sun" is the second single from their 1996 album Evil Empire. The song is about the Zapatista revolution.

Short Clip: Alan Moore on Anarchism

Hey folks. I just wanted to throw a quick post out there. I have to apologize, I'm not up to my regular schedule. Missed posting a movie on Friday, probably won't post any Emma Goldman this weekend. Grandparents are in town, along with the anarchist book fair, and works hell, so I've had little time to blog. Promise that everything will be back in schedule by next week.

In the mean time, here's Alan Moore talking about his conception of anarchism. Moore's comics like V for Vendetta and The Watchman explore political and anarchist themes. He is definitely one of my favorite comic book writers out there.

Wobbly Wednesday: Affordable Housing Rally

Lisa Barlott-Cardenas from the Industrial Workers of the World speaks at the Boom for Whom? Affordable Housing Rally on August 18, 2007 at the Alberta Legislature.

Monday Music Video: Jewish Anarchist Anthem

The early 20th century saw influx of immigration. One of the largest section of new Americans where Jews, often forced off there historical lands in Russia and the low countries by Czarist progroms. These experiences radicalized these Jewish immigrants. Some, like Emma Goldman and Alexander Berkman, embraced anarchism. These Jewish anarchists started there own Yiddish publications, like Freie Arbeiter Stimme {The Free Voice of Labor) the longest-running anarchist periodical in the Yiddish language, and the American counterpart to Rudolf Rocker's London-based Arbeter Fraynd (Workers' Friend).

Here is a Jewish anarchist song from that time. I don't really know it's name, so if anyone does know, don't be afarid to drop me a line and give me the heads up.

Weekend Emma: Sandra Oh reads Emma Goldman

Actress Sandra Oh reads the speech given by anarchist Emma Goldman in San Francisco before the United States entered WWI. Part of a reading from Voices of a People's History of the United States given October 5, 2005 in Los Angeles, California.

Friday Film: Lucio *Spanish*

Here's another one I would love with some English subtitles.

Lucio is a spanish documentary about famed anarchist Lucio Urtubia. Lucico carried out bank robberies and forgeries throughout the 1960s and 1970s, his most famous forgery being the forgery of Citibank travellers' checks in 1977. This criminal undertaking included 8,000 copies of 25 checks worth 100 dollars each and damaged the bank so severely that its stock price fell. The stolen money was used, as always, in the aid of guerrilla movements in Latin America (Tupamaros, Montoneros, etc) and Europe. In spite of the specularity of the forgery, Urtubia was only sentenced to 6 months in jail thanks to an extra-judicial agreement with Citibank, which dropped the charges in exchange for Urtubia's printing plates. All the time working as a bricklayer in France.

Wobbly Wednesday: Wobbly Recyclers rally videos

here are two videos from the recent contract negotiations between IWW curbside recycle workers at Ecology Center / Berkeley Curbside Recycling and there management. Without the pressure on the shop floor, our Fellow Workers would have not gotten anything.

In the end, faced with a possible strike, the EC backed down and agreed to the $1.00 raise across the board, along with the other improvements. This is still a long way away from what is really needed, and the EC continues with the same game that any employer plays - that "the money isn't there" - while refusing to document this. Nevertheless, IWW members should be proud that ours is not a union that accepts management's word for what is "affordable" and what isn't. While this raise (along with the 401k improvement) is not as much as the workers deserve, I do think it's probably more than lots of other unions contracts are winning nowadays. This is because we start from the position of the workers' needs, not those of the bosses.

Film: Nazi Pop Twins

there is a local case here in Winnipeg where these white nationalists drew swastikas all over their kids and the child and family services took them away. Now there is this big custody case, where the nazi parents are saying that there human rights to teach their children their “religion” or some stupid shit. This case really hit home a week ago, when my partner found out that the nazi father was the security guard at her work, and that some of her non-white co-workers where noticing that he was staring them down.

Nazi Pop Twins is a 2007 British documentary that investigates Prussian Blue, a white supremist pop duo comprised of twin sisters Lynx and Lamb Gaede. It stresses tension between the twins and their mother, April—manager and nazi stage mom from hell—and the stress the white nationalist ideology has put on grandparents Bill and Dianne's relationship to the point where Dianne threatens to leave Bill during the making of the program. It also touches on the fact that this ideology seems to have been a factor in the breakup of mother April's marriage, which also happens concurrently to the making of the program. The girls are also shown trying to distance themselves from the “white pride” movement, expressing doubt that it is what they really believe in.

Monday Music Video: Anna is a Stool Pigeon by Tom Gabel

This is Tom Gabel of Against Me! playing at the Nimbus Dam, the site Eric McDavid was allegedly plotting to blow up with Zachary Jenson and Lauren Weiner. An FBI informant named “Anna” provided the group with bomb-making recipes; at times financed their transportation, food and housing; strung along McDavid, who had the hopes of a romantic relationship; and poked and prodded the group into action.

In what is a clear-cut example of entrapment, Eric was sentenced nearly 20 years in prison.

Check out Eric's support site and for more information on the green scare and arrests arising from them at Green is the New Red.

Clip: Emma Goldman Interview

Yesterday, I picked up Vision on Fire: Emma Goldman on the Spanish Revolution. I also downloaded the Emma Goldman papers from Audio Anarchy, so it's been an all Emma Goldman weekend. Vision on Fire is a real great book so far, and there is nothing better then listening to anarcha-feminist spoken word while wage slaving my day away.

So, in the spirit of this Emma Weekend, here is a short interview from 1934. Still fiery in her later years, Emma was 64 years old, having been in exile for 14 years, and only granted a permit to say in New York for 90 days.

Local Film Screening: Handmade Nation

To kick off the 2009 Winnipeg D.I.Y Fest and Anarchist Book Fair, the Manitoba Craft Council is having a screening of the documentary Handmade Nation. Handmade Nation documents a movement of artists, crafters and designers that recognize a marriage between historical techniques, punk and DIY (do it yourself) ethos wile being influenced by traditional handiwork, Modern aesthetics, politics, feminism and art. Fueled by the common thread of creating, Handmade Nation explores a burgeoning art community that is based on creativity, determination and networking.

Here's the event info and a trailer:

When: June 19th @ 7:30 pm
Where: Ellice Theatre, 585 Ellice Ave, Wpg
Cost: $5 @ the Door
DIY Craft Salve @ 7 pm

Friday Film: The Potentiality of Storming Heaven

The insurrection that followed the police shooting and death of Alexandros Grigoropoulos is one of the most inspiring turn of events in this decade. That tragedy ripped open the lid of a widespread feeling of frustration in the younger generation festering under the gloss of a failing tourist economy.

The Potentiality of Storming Heaven is a 28 minutes short movie presenting the insurrection of December 2008 in Greece through the words and actions of people that took part in it.

Short Film: Organoponico! An Agricultural Revolution

Organoponicos are a wonderful surprise in the heartland of Castro's Cuba. They are community built, community operated and arose from the below by people taking over urban sprawl wastelands.

Organoponicos where a community response to lack of food security after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Now, of course, they are heavily subsidized and supported by the Cuban government. One wonders if such a community response to a food crisis can transition into a more liberal society. After watching this video, what do you think?

Wobbly Wednesday: Wobblies at the Mermaid Parade

This is a short video out of New York, taken at the Coney Island Mermaid Parade in 2007. The Mermaid Parade takes place every year by the sea in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York City, usually in mid-to-late June.

This is the kind of things I would like all Wobs to get involved in. The IWW is historically a lively, singing union. Instead of tiered old protest marches or walking the picket that seem more like funeral processions then anything that could effectively challenge authority, wobs should bring some life back into the radical movement. Strikes become street party, joyous events where we are taking back a peice of our life and fighting back!


Monday Art Film: De la Menthe et des Pantomimes

Today I'm going to post something special. Here is a short art film called De la Menthe et des Pantomimes (or, Of Mint and Mimes), made by a friend for the Winnipeg Film Group's 48h film contest.

To quote Le Manifeste du Surréalisme, "Surrealism is the "invisible ray" which will one day enable us to win out over our opponents." I think that, as an art form, surrealism is the most dangerous and insurrectionary style, as it denies accepted reality and places all hope in total imagination, thus freeing us from the restrictions of capitalist mind-cogs.