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THE END OF AMERICA

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—BOOK REVIEW—

he End of America: Letter of Warning to an American Patriot (2007, Chelsea Green) is a well-researched and informative survey of the attacks on American democracy during the Bush Administration. Best-selling author Naomi Wolf (The Beauty Myth) provides a solid compilation of examples that illustrate a “fascist shift” in our society today: Rights being trampled on, voices being silenced, and powers being abused, right here in the good old USA. Described by readers as a pamphlet in the tradition of Paine’s “Common Sense,” the book is a very handy summary of the real state of our union in a tight 155 pages. The “fascist shift” Wolf refers to, consists of ten steps that are universal tools for would-be dictators trying to close down an open society, such as we consider ours to be. Yes, all ten are visible in the U.S. today, from arbitrarily detaining citizens, to establishing secret prisons and developing paramilitary forces. Wolf addresses each of the ten steps in turn, showing with a multitude of examples how these and other activities taking place in post-9/11 America have chillingly paralleled tactics and policies seen during the transformations of Italy under Mussolini, Germany under Hitler, and Russia under Stalin, among others. These similarities range from the broad, such as the arbitrary detention of citizens who have criticized or questioned policies or simply fit a profile, to the very specific, such as the methods of “interrogation” used at Guantanamo and in prisons run by Hitler’s Germany. For those who would insist that “it can’t happen here” because of how our government is structured or how uniquely dedicated Americans are to democracy, Wolf has a crucial observation: both Mussolini and Hitler came to power legally in “fragile parliamentary democracies,” manipulating the system to indoctrinate their agenda. Steps taken under the Bush Administration that could be seen similarly include the Military Commissions Act, which denies habeas corpus to those detained as “enemy combatants,” and the Defense Authorization Act of 2006, which modifies the President’s abilities to declare martial law and deploy troops within the U.S. Wolf demonstrates a strong understanding of the topic, correlating each stage in the “fascist shift” to a new level of acceptance and submission in the people. She stops short of predicting martial law or a massive crackdown on opposition in this country, but challenges the reader to seriously consider what direction America is taking and whether Americans have forgotten the forefathers’ apprehension of the rise of a tyrant in America, whether it be the current President or a future one.•

be the media!

State of Disunion

We Vote

NUMBER OF FEDERAL DOLLARS allocated to security for ESTIMATED NUMBER the DNC: OF PEOPLE 50,000,000 that will attend the DNC: 35,000 NUMBER OF U.S. CITIES AGE where protests or actions that Noam Chomsky occured on ‘Super wrote his first book on Tuesday’ including GJ: Anarchism: 6 10 PERCENT OF THE AMERICAN POPULATION that are racial/ethnic minorities: 34

FEBRUARY 2008

VOL. 6 NO. 2

MESA STATE HOUSING: A CLASSIST SYSTEM

PERCENT OF U.S. TV STATIONS that are owned by minorities: 3.15

NUMBER OF MEGA NUMBER OF MEDIA COMPANIES AMERICANS that control 90% of all arrested in 2005 for drug media: offences: 6 1,846,400 TOTAL NUMBER NUMBER OF OF AMERICAN AMERICAN SOLIDERS SOLIDERS killed in Iraq: killed in Iraq in January: 3960 40 * Sources for the State of Disunion can be found at www.gjredpill.org

CA L L T O AC T I O N The Red Pill is looking for volunteers: graphic designers, writers, poets, cartoonists, artists, and photographers are needed. Get your work published now. Help distribute The Red Pill in your community, church, and school: contact us at gjredpill@hotmail.com. You can also do your part to keep us in print by donating time, paper, film, copies, and of course money (it doesn’t print itself).

The Red Pill is collectively produced by Grand Junction Alternative Media, with the aim of publishing stories and ideas that the mainstream media won’t cover. It is distributed free, collects no advertising, and is completely staffed by volunteers. All materials are copyleft, no rights are reserved. PH O T O C O P Y A N D D I S T R I B U T E AT W I L L !

www.gjredpill.org

No

C

lass appears all over the world and has existed since the beginning of written history. College is the time to leave class, age, sex, and race out of it and create equal opportunity for all students to acquire an education, right? Wrong. The ever-changing dorm situation at Mesa State has given rise to a classist system. Even now, the Board of Trustees has decided to build another new dormitory; construction will begin just after the Saunders Field House renovations (capped at almost $41 million), and before Houston Hall renovations. With 85 percent of Mesa State’s budget going toward buildings, why not another new dorm, even though the kitchen at the cafeteria is insufficient for more students. Members of the Board of Trustees want to accommodate ‘everyone’ with a variety of housing choices to better comfort the needs of all students, which has had the effect of segregating the poor students from the ‘more affluent’ students, and rent’s not gettin’ any cheaper.

Costs per semester for dorm living range from $2,007.47 (Walnut Ridge Apartments, where a meal plan is not required) to $4,593.10 (a ‘super-single’ in the new hall). Pinion’s nickname, the Pinion Projects, illustrates the class division between the old and new dorms. Grand Mesa Hall, also know as “The New Dorms,” are fully equipped with flat screen TVs in every pod, a computer lab, and conference rooms. Tolman resident, Justin Reed, said there are five computers available in Tolman, one of which makes an incredibly strange clanking sound when you turn it on. MSC students, Luke Hurt and Pat Warnes, roommates in Monument Hall, gave TRP their opinion. Warnes said he picked Monument because it’s “better” than the old dorms, and he looked down on sharing a bathroom with 20 other dudes. Hurt and Warnes both said that their parents make good money; Hurt estimated that his make

www.gjredpill.org

“CLASS” ON SECOND PAGE


“CLASS” FROM FIRST PAGE

$110,000 a year. Sophomore Monkey Bjerk, a resident of Tolman Hall, said that the new hall is “set up like a freakin’ hotel.” He says he picked Tolman because it’s “a hell of a lot cheaper” Tolman Computer Lab and his parents are just blue collar citizens. When analyzing the housing situation, Bjerk said he’s not sure if there is a class difference, but the new and the old halls are definitely forming cliques Grand Mesa Computer Lab on campus, like a North vs South campus. He noted undoubtedly that “a lot of kids in the new dorm come from money.” Reed said that a classist system exists at Mesa State. He said that the new dorm students don’t really associate with the old dorm students and won’t even give him the time of day. “I don’t think they even realize they’re doing it, honestly. They just get in their little cliques.” Reed also said that they talk-up the new dorms all the time, as if

bragging. “I don’t like the way they make me feel.” When speaking about students from Walnut Ridge apartments, he said, “They’re below us (Tolman, Pinion and Rait).” He said they’re like homeless people, sitting outside the cafeteria hoping for a bite to eat. Both Bjerk and Reed described similar scenarios; they each had friends who lived in the old dorms with them last year. This year, their friends moved into the rich dorms and are no longer friends. This classism is causing cliques to ruin social relationships— when will it start affecting Leaky Tolman Hallway the educational process? Thanks to the class structure of Mesa State housing, the rich kids are as comfortable as possible (enjoying their flat screens and new furniture) and the poor kids are Grand Mesa Hallway as uncomfortable as possible (with their dysfunctional computers and ancient buildings).•

WE VOTE NO!

O

n February 5th a banner reading: “WE VOTE NO” appeared on the new parking garage in downtown Grand Junction. Emblazoned with a red anarchy sign, the banner faced the Wayne Aspinall Federal Building. It appears that the banner was hung to coincide with “Super Tuesday,” as it was hung just hours before caucuses began at 7pm.• EVERY MONDAY• 5:30pm A Voice of Reason, the local peace group meets to stratigize local actions to end the war in Iraq. For more info call 245-3720

TUESDAY FEBRUARY 12• 5:30pm A Voice of Reason, will be hold a free screening of the explosive documentary “Hacking Democracy” Huston Hall Rm 130 @ Mesa State

KNOW YOUR MEDIA! WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR NEWS

D

uring the past twelve years, U.S. media ownership rules have been relaxed several times, first in 1996 with the Telecommunications Act, and then again in 2003. The first move by the Federal Communications Commission was met with some opposition by the public but eventually was passed. This caused a wave of media mergers in which a handful of multi-billion dollar companies took control of a vast majority of our major sources of information. And when the FCC moved to relax the rules once again, over three million citizens voiced serious concerns about the further limiting of American voices in the public arena. Media activists took their complaints straight to the FCC and to Congress, eventually resulting in the Senate passing (by an overwhelming majority) a resolution to revoke the changes. Activists sued the FCC for ignoring public opinion on the matter and won in a Federal district court in Philadelphia. The changes were officially abandoned in 2004. The original ownership restrictions were put in place for the obvious reason that a healthy democracy needs a multitude of voices to be heard in order for freedom of thought and opinion to prevail. But now FCC Chairman, Kevin Martin believes these restrictions are obsolete and “need updating.” Big media companies argue that cross-ownership of local media outlets allows the media to provide better quality journalism if various news staffs “share resources,” but this actually results in more cross-promotion between news outlets and less real reporting. So the battle rages on.... Recent media mergers include News Corp. (who owns Fox News) buying MySpace, and Rupert Murdoch admittedly censoring and removing anti-Bush statements from people’s MySpace profiles (including statements posted on Tool lead singer Maynard’s page). Also on the horizon is the controversial merger between the only two licensed satellite radio carriers in the U.S., XM and Sirius. The National Association of Broadcasters has take a strong stance against this move, seeing it as an impending monopoly in the satellite radio market. But so far there has been very little public opposition to this merger. And this is such a complex issue that it is now the longest pending case the FCC has ever faced. We’re still waiting for a decision on this one. Also, Microsoft is bidding $44.6 billion to buy out Yahoo. This is currently facing scrutiny by the FCC to see if it abides by antitrust laws, but even if it passes it will have far-reaching implications about what kind of information you can actually find on Yahoo. Almost every national television network is

owned by a media conglomerate. The big four are Fox (owned by News Corp.), CBS (owned by Viacom), ABC (owned by Disney), and NBC (owned by General Electric). The most interesting of these insthe GE/NBC deal. There is an obvious conflict of interest when one of the world’s largest weapons manufacturers (and the manufacturer of a gattling gun which exclusively uses Depleted Uranium shells, spreading radioactive waste throughout Iraq and Afghanistan)ownsthenewsgroupthatpeoplegetmost of their news about these wars from. You never hear anything too critical of the war effort on any of NBC’s broadcast or cable outlets. GE very recently signed a $193 million contract with the Defense Department, so it would not be in their best financial interest to allow NBC to report any bad news about the war. On a local level, the Daily Sentinel is owned by Cox Enterprises (one of the largest groups of newspapers in the country). KKCO Channel 11 is owned by Gray Television, and KREX Channel 5 is owned by Hoak Media (and it houses KFQX and KGJT also). We have a very limited selection of voices in the Grand Valley, and these are the same voices that other towns and cities all over the country get to hear. So if you watch NBC News or read the Daily Sentinel, just be aware that the people who own those companies have certain ideas about what news they want you to have access to. We should all pay more attention to the motives of these parent companies so that we can digest their news with a critical palate, instead of a passive one. These companies are a lot more concerned about their profit margin than they are about a true democracy in America. What can you do, besides raising a stink in the face of your elected officials every time media ownership rules are going to be relaxed, is to support independent media in all its forms. A good starting point is not-forprofit media ventures (a little shameless promotion for The Red Pill). An even better way to take action is to BE THE MEDIA! Start your own news outlet, dig up your own facts, and share those facts with as many people as you can. If more of us did our own reporting, these waves of media consolidation wouldn’t be such a threat to our freedom of thought.•

RED PILL LOCATIONS You can pick up your copy of The Red Pill at the following locations: Planet 9, Heart of the Dragon, Third World Imports, Planet Earth, The Hot Tomato, Kleen Sting, Colorado Java, Himalayan Feeling, Contemporary Glass Works, Change Skateboards, Coffee Muggers, Triple Play Records, Pretty Things, Dream Child Entertainment. Download the Red Pill at: http://www.gjredpill.org Become our friend on myspace.com @ http://www.myspace.com/gjamtheredpill


AFTER READING PETER DALE SCOTT’S DEEP POLITICS & THE ASSASINATION OF JFK -BY ART GOODTIMESa snowy day at home thank goodness for the coverup the treacherous passes let others shop Noel Night sip lattes at Two Candles or score more stuff on the road To-Hell-U-Ride i treasure a day alone at Cloud Acre tinkering with clutter cataloguing the haphazard congeries of a secret life one face public like Janus at the door & the other a very private holding company happy witht he lyric valuables of its serendipitous assets art goodtimes union of street poets vincent st. john local colorado plateau aztlan kuksu brigade (ret.) san francisco 14 dec 2007

COLORADO THOUGHT CRIME STATUTE BANS ANARCHISM

I

found this little gem in the Colorado Revised Statutes. The wording is vague enough to include just about any protest that incorporates civil-disobience, but then again I think that it infringes on free speech to such an extent that it wouldn’t hold up on appeal. As a Coloradan and an anarchist I hope they try to charge someone with this law at the DNC, so that it could be struck down. 18-11-203. Membership in Anarchistic and Seditious Associations. (1) Any association, organization, society, or corporation, one of whose purposes or professed purposes is to bring about any governmental, social, industrial, or economic change in this state or in the United States by the use of sabotage, terrorism, physical force, violence, or bodily injury, or which teaches, advocates, advises, or defends the use of sabotage, terrorism, physical force, violence, or bodily injury to person or property, or threats of such injury, to accomplish such change, and which shall, by any such means, prosecute or pursue such purpose or professed purpose is declared to be anarchistic and seditious in character and to be an unlawful association. (2)Anypersonwho,inthisstate,shallactorprofess to act as an officer of any such unlawful association, or shall speak, write, or publish as a representative or professedrepresentativeofanysuchunlawfulassociation, or, knowing the purpose, teachings, and doctrine of such association, shall become or continue to be a member thereof or contribute dues, money, or other things of value to it or to anyone for it commits a class 5 felony. It should be noted that Class 5 felonies carry a 13 year sentence with 2 years mandatory parole.•

NEXT SUMMER•DEMOCRATIC and REPUBLICAN NATIONAL CONVENTIONS You’d better mark it on you calenders now, and request the time off of work, because at the end of next summer, large protests are going to rock Denver and Minneapolis. The DNC is going to be in Denver from Aug. 25-28th and the RNC is going to be in the Twin Cities from September 1st-4th. Check out www.recreate68.org and www.rncwelcomingcommittee.org for more info and updates. See you in the streets.

THE FORGOTTEN NEWS

HOMEWORK FOR THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA

O

BY SABRINA CARRASCO HEIERMANN

n the website, www.alertnet.org you can find a cynical tool. The World Press Tracker shows which conflicts in the world grab the international media limelight. As expected, the war in Iraq holds the pole position of this ranking with 25380 articles since the tracker started counting in September 2006. Second and third are Afghanistan with 7510 and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with 6194 articles. Burma and its recently re-flared struggle for democracy is still among the top 10, but the question remains: for how long? Many conflicts and even wars in the world are left out by the mainstream media, here in the UK as well as in other countries. Once or twice places like Uzbekistan or Haiti make the headlines when riots break out or a president has to flee the country. Follow-ups are rarely made, news reports are unlikely if the situation has not changed dramatically. It does not even have to be the Zapatista movement in Mexico, trying to build a socially just and economically independent society. Somehow mainstream media is able to suggest to its many readers that Jordan’s baby is more important than the kids starving around the corner. Which is sad, since there are 3.8

million children in the UK living in poverty according to the charity End Child Poverty. Thinking about all this makes me ask: What is the reason that some news is important to us and the ‘media-makers’ and some is not? One possible answer is that there is only so much reality we can stand, especially when sitting on a packed tube and tired after work. In a moment like this I don’t want to read about genocide in Darfur or the fact that 27.000 women have been raped by Hutu men in 2006 alone. I’m rather likely to look at a picture of Amy jumping out of a car to get a last drink before going into her Xth rehab and think a bit gloatingly to myself how horrible her skinny legs look. But the point of the media should not be to produce this malicious joy. Of course, news shows and newspapers cannot tell us about everything, but they should be able to produce curiosity. They should encourage us to find out more about places and things that are going on – even if we might not be immediately affected by them.• This story was originally published by The Canvas, an underground newspaper based out of England.

UNCONVENTIONAL DENVER

A

CALL TO ACTION! DISRUPT THE DNC!

narchists and Anti-Authoritarians: join us in Denver, Colorado, August 24th-28th as we engage in coordinated Direct Actions against the Democratic National Convention, its corporate sponsors, and the military/police occupation of public space. Respecting diverse tactics and the autonomy of affinity groups and individuals, Unconventional Action has created the following framework to maximize our impact as we disrupt the DNC. Unconventional Action’s strategy at the Democratic National Convention will hold the Democratic Party accountable for promoting unjust policies: environmental degradation, the enforcement of arbitrary borders, attacks on the poor, complacency in war, and racist

policing. We will expose to the nation that the Democrats and Republicans are two sides of the same coin, both parties funded by the same corporations and upholding the same unjust political system which fails to meet the needs of the vast majority of people. Anarchists and Anti-Authoritarians are urged to engage in a broad variety of tactics to disrupt fundraising events and prevent Democratic delegates from voting for no-choice candidates. Unconventional Action will honor and support autonomous actions while coordinating a highly publicized assault on the pageantry, violence, and abuses of the Democrats and the two-party capitalist system.

Saturday & Sunday March 1-2, 2008 7th Annual Local to To Global Justice Teach-In For more info contact: localtoglobaljustice@yahoo.com ASU Tempe Campus, Tempe, AZ

Wednesday, March 5th, 2008 • 5PM Drinking Liberally Get Together. Kannah Creek Brewing 12th and Walnut, Grand Junction, CO

“DNC” ON FOURTH PAGE


AM: All are encouraged to participate in an Anti-War/AntiOccupation March and related actions.

“DNC” FROM THIRD PAGE

Unconventional Action will target a variety of the 1,500 proposed fundraisers, countless delegate hotels, and designated institutions perpetuating global injustice. Using space reclamation, street theatre, direct confrontation, positive action, and a broad array of other tactics, we will force the national media to question the Democratic Party’s failures, hold Democratic candidates accountable for their abuses of power, and engage in direct actions that reflect our ultimate goals of joy and liberation through creativity and confrontation. Below we have outlined our anticipated schedule of direct action for the DNC. While rough, our outline can be used as a guide to schedule and develop actions. Our calendar is a flexible work-in-progress and will shift as needed. Unconventional Action Denver will provide updates on the website, www.dncdisruption08.org. This is at best currently a rough outline, and will most likely change and solidify as the weeks progress. Take this as a guiding schedule for your actions, and expect to hear more from Unconventional Denver about these events and actions. Denver organizers have designated certain themes for particular days. Consider coordinating the message of your actions based on each days theme. The calendar is as follows:

PM: Directly following the march, Unconventional Action Denver will plan for a low to medium risk reclamation of space somewhere in the city, as yet to be determined.. This action will be widely publicized, although the location may be revealed only in the lead up week or two, and will be designed to show our strength and ability to create our own systems of organization. After our reclamation, we will PARTY ALL NIGHT LONG!!! From this party, affinity groups will be encouraged to depart and engage in autonomous actions targeting those who profit from wars and our oversized military. MONDAY AUG 25: FREE POLITICAL HUMAN RIGHTS DAY

PRISONERS/

AM: Participate in a Free Peltier/All Political Prisoners march ending at the capitol across from civic center park. Because Peltier has a vital hearing later in the week that could free him from his long illegal imprisonment, Unconventional Denver encourages all to attend this march. PM: SHUTDOWN THE FUNDRAISERS!!! The DNC/Democrats are hosting a giant party to raise as much money as they can. On this night, we will interrupt this flow of capital and disrupt the fundraisers. Our theme: no business as usual. The Democrats and their corporate backers will be unable to

TUESDAY AUG 26: Environmental Issues/ Warming Day

No

Global

AM: STOP THE VOTE!!! WE VOTE NO!! Tuesday is the day when all the delegates put in their vote for who will represent the Democrats in the election, BUT THEY ONLY HAVE UNTIL 6PM TO VOTE and it is a long, arduous process. We encourage people to focus on ways to stop the delegates from getting to the Pepsi center to vote. Our targets: hotels, intersections, and transportation systems. Special attention will be given to keeping the so-called “super-delegates” (what funny comic book characters they would be...) from being able to attend the vote. ALL TACTICS WELCOME AND ENCOURAGED!!! Come prepared with a plan and ready to make a stand with your affinity group and friends. PM: Tonight, we’ll target fundraisers of corporations profiting from and furthering global warming. We will also shut down actual sources of environmental degradation and greenhouse gas emissions. Get creative and use a diversity of tactics. . WEDNESDAY AUG 27: NO BORDERS DAY AM: A NO BORDERS march will be planned by other groups. Unconventional Action hopes to see no actions during the time of this march that compromise the safety of march participants. Our goal is to ensure that the march is safe for all people, regardless of documentation status. AFTERNOON/PM: At the People’s Feast we will share food around Denver with as many people as we can, especially those negatively affected by the DNC’s presence in town. Focus on food liberation. Do the delegates really need that much food?

SUNDAY AUG 24: ANTI WAR/OCCUPATION DAY

SUNDAY MARCH 30th• 2PM Students for a Democratic Society will hold a anti-war rally and march featuring local music and speakers For more info or to get involved in organizing call 245-3720

continue their celebrations of environmental, economic, and social destruction, political corruption, and failed policy. UD will provide more information about events/locations.

bike rides, helping negatively impacted communities, impromptu dance parties, and anything else you creative people out there can think of. Thematically, we call for people to engage in actions targeting corporations and individuals profiting from the criminalization of immigration and contractors in Denver working on the border-fence. THURSDAY AUG 28: END RACISM/IMPERIALISM DAY AM-PM: Today we will engage in visually stunning, media attracting actions targeting the Democrats’ complicity in racism in Denver and nationally through gentrification, police brutality, criminal injustice, the prison industrial complex, etc. We will target institutions and corporations that bring US imperialism and racism to the rest of the world and inflict it upon us Late PM-Friday AM: Tonight we will party, sleep, and support our comrades before heading to Minneapolis to disrupt the RNC...•

PM: Concrete decentralized actions. Guerrilla gardening, free school/workshops, gentrification reclamation, informational Deadlines for Upcoming Special Issues Iraq War Issue #3: March 11, Drug War Issue: April 11, Wealth and Poverty Issue: May 4 Submissions Welcomed!

RED PILL NEED’S YOUR HELP! We need volunteers. We need your events. We need writers. And most importantly we need cash for a new copy machine. You can get a hold of us at gjredpill@hotmail.com, or donate through Pay-Pal at our website www.gjredpill.org. We couldn’t do all this without you. Thanks.


vol 6 no 2  

NUMBER OF U.S. CITIES where protests or actions occured on ‘Super Tuesday’ including GJ: 6 PERCENT OF THE AMERICAN POPULATION that are raci...

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