Demand Zero

Occupy Wall Street could actually use a demand that is straight-forward and would have broad support. Accomplishing this would give the OWS movement credibility and moral connectivity. The demand should be one that is concrete and would advance the OWS agenda while morally isolating its opponents. The best demand for this purpose would be:

A constitutional amendment that would eliminate any of the benefits of the Bill of Rights from accruing to corporations, and simply state that the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights only accrue to natural born persons is exactly the kind of demand that OWS needs to make.  It is a simple demand, and one that, if acted upon would dramatically change the political landscape by allowing all kinds of limits on corporations.  Such an action is a precondition for dismantling incipient corporate fascism before it takes root.

Any one who opposed that would so clearly isolated themselves that they would be committing political suicide. Also, such an amendment would have concrete results, for example, overturning Citizens United.

I like the catchy name Demand Zero, too.

Demand Zero

Wikileaks domains that are still on line (2010/12/04 11:36 CST)

Wikileaks domains currently online.

Wikileaks is currently under a heavy DDOS attack from unknown entities.

If a link is not working because of a DDoS attack, just try the next one. A lot of the EU domains are currently affected (03:45 GMT)

Spain********* boom! another one bites the dust

British Virgin Islands
Canada********* boom! another one bites the dust. C’mon Canada — you’re better than this.
New Zealand
Sao Tome

Wikileaks Mass Mirror Project

Wikileaks domains that are still on line (2010/12/04 11:36 CST)

The war between the Banksters and the People really gets going

A couple of posts from the Financial Frontier:

First, from the it isn’t over yet department, the housing market collapses in the UK:

UK house prices fall by record 3.6pc in a month
The UK housing market has suffered a shock as figures from the Halifax revealed the average price of a property dropped more than £6,000 in September [2010].

And from the good government department:

Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner on the Foreclosure Crisis and Her State’s Lawsuit Against Ally Financial

Calls are growing for a nationwide moratorium on home foreclosures following the recent revelations that major lenders may have committed fraud while forcing thousands of people out of their homes. On Thursday the White House announced President Obama will not sign a bill approved by Congress that could have made it easier for banks to foreclose. We discuss the latest in the foreclosure crisis with Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner. This week, Ohio filed a lawsuit accusing the lender Ally Financial and its GMAC Mortgage division of fraud in approving scores of foreclosures.

Next, there will some interesting decisions the banksters have to make, all centering around the question of how dirty do they want to fight. These debates won’t want to take place in public, but thanks to wikileaks and others we can expect more revelations like Bernie Marcus’ memorable appeal “to shoot” any business leader who does not oppose the Employee Free Choice Act. Of course, anyone like the Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner who tries to stop the foreclosures that are destroying neighborhoods will be accused of starting a “class war.”  But asking for those who don’t oppose legislation to be shot isn’t inciting a class war, it is doing something truly noble.

The war between the Banksters and the People really gets going

Greece, more Lies and still more Clues

It is surprising that those who are “managing” the economy are still sticking to the same formulas even though it has been shown that they are failures.  They are tightening their seat belts as they drive the bus off the edge of a cliff.  Much better plan would be to get of the bus!

May 6, 2010, 6:11 am <!– — Updated: 3:52 pm –>

It’s Not About Greece Anymore


The Greek “rescue” package announced last weekend is dramatic, unprecedented and far from enough to stabilize the euro zone.

The Greek government and the European Union leadership, prodded by the International Monetary Fund, are finally becoming realistic about the dire economic situation in Greece. They have abandoned previous rounds of optimistic forecasts and have now admitted to a profoundly worse situation. This new program calls for “fiscal adjustments” — cuts to the fiscal deficit, mostly through spending cuts — totaling 11 percent of gross domestic product in 2010, 4.3 percent in 2011, and 2 percent in 2012 and 2013. The total debt-to-G.D.P. ratio peaks at 149 percent in 2012-13 before starting a gentle glide path back down to sanity.

This new program is honest enough to show why it is unlikely to succeed.

Daniel Gros, an eminent economist on euro zone issues who is based in Brussels, has argued that for each 1 percent of G.D.P. decline in Greek government spending, total demand in the country falls by 2.5 percent of G.D.P. If the government reduces spending by 15 percent of G.D.P. — the initial shock to demand could be well over 30 percent of G.D.P.

ITS NOT ABOUT GREECE ANYMORE. Well, duh was it ever? The riots in Greece were all about the oppression of people by an unjust economic system, and if you don’t believe these words of mine, just look at the pictures in this post from 16 December 2008:  Greece, Clues and Lies

Greece, more Lies and still more Clues

Tridge on patents

Some really smart talk by Andrew Tridgell on patents. He’s thinking about human motivations and how systems interlock, and how people reach decisions in groups that are structured by social norms and economic realities. Very clear stuff:

So how can we turn that around? How can we make ourselves a tough target? And I think it’s very important that we be the toughest, meanest target for patents on the block. We can do it, because we have something that other people don’t. We have a technical community that is really really good at the sort of logic of protocols you need to defend against patents. If we can find a way to coordinate within that community to actually build the patent defence, then we can do something rather interesting: if any time somebody in a carpark mentions some patent and FOSS might violate it, jump on it! Squash the living daylights out of it. What do you do? You find a non-infringement argument. You find a workaround. If you find a workaround, then you shout it from the rooftops. You publicise it.

What does publicising that workaround do? What does it do to the motivation of the people who own the patents? The people trying to make money out of these patents? If you publicise the workaround, then not only do they not get the licence fee from the free software community, they might stop getting the licence fees from the proprietary vendors as well because those proprietary vendors say “hmm, we don’t have to pay $10 for a copy anymore, we can use this workaround the free software community has found”. So that means that this person holding a patent, wondering who to strike first, wondering who to try this patent out on, will say: “if I try this out on a proprietary company and they find a workaround, they’re going to keep it secret, because they want to keep it secret because they don’t want other people to have the workaround because they want to be the only ones not paying the fee.

If we go after the free software community, they’re going to advertise the workaround, we might lose our entire value of this patent. We might lose the lot. And it’s expensive, getting patents, expensive maintaining them. So they don’t want to lose them. That’s where I want us to be as a community. I want us to jump on patents, squash them, find workarounds – but rigourously, not the Slashdot way of the title and “Apple did it in 1915” or whatever. Not that sort of thing. It’s the type of serious analysis that I’ve tried to show you how to do today. I’m sure that nearly everyone in this room is quite capable of doing this analysis. You’re the type of engineers that can do it. You just need to be lead a little bit along the way, to start building up your knowledge of how to analyse patents.

The whole talk here:

Tridge on patents

Who are the murderers?

Here’s a story at truthout about the many environmental activists who have been killed in El Salvador, apparently opposing the interests of Pacific Rim Mining is dangerous for your health:

Anti-Mining Activists Killed in El Salvador

Tuesday 29 December 2009

by: Amy Goodman | Democracy NOW!

On Saturday, thirty-two-year-old Dora “Alicia” Recinos Sorto was shot dead near her home. She was eight months pregnant, carrying her two-year-old son. Sorto and her husband were both active members of the Cabañas Environment Committee, which has campaigned against the reopening of a gold mine owned by the Vancouver-based Pacific Rim Mining Company.

Last week, Ramiro Rivera Gomez, the vice president of the Cabañas Environment Committee, was shot dead by heavily armed men despite having been under twenty-four-hour police protection. Another anti-gold-mining activist, Marcelo Rivera, from a nearby town was kidnapped and murdered in June.

And what is really necessary right now is for these murders to be investigated, not just on a superficial level of trying to find, you know, the gunmen, but really going beyond that to investigate the intellectual authors behind these murders. They are very systematic. They are very targeted. And what we’ve seen—you know, as you mentioned, with Ramiro Rivera, he was under twenty-four-hour police protection. So the people who are responsible for this, who are calling the shots, or who are making this happen, must have a pretty extensive amount of financial resources or institutional resources. And so, it’s going beyond just chalking this up to common crime or gang-related violence.

But those executives of Pacific Rim Mining live far from the world in which those who oppose them are killed:

World Headquarters of Pacific Rim Mining:

Toll Free: 1-888-775-7097
Tel: (604) 689-1976 Fax: (604) 689-1978
#1050 – 625 Howe Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6C 2T6

#105 – 3545 Airway Drive, Reno, NV
USA 89511
775-852-5888 (phone)
775-852-0323 (fax)


Catherine McLeod-Seltzer (Chairman)

Catherine McLeod-Seltzer has enjoyed a broad and successful career in the mining industry, including co-founding and/or directing numerous successful mining ventures such as Arequipa Resources, Francisco Gold, Miramar Mining, Peru Copper, Bear Creek Mining, Stornoway Diamonds, and Kinross. Catherine brings an extensive knowledge of mining finance and public relations as well as her exceptional reputation and network of industry contacts to Pacific Rim’s Board of Directors.

Thomas C. Shrake (President and CEO)

As President and CEO of Pacific Rim, Tom Shrake oversees Pacific Rim’s technical programs and project acquisitions, and implements the Company’s objectives and strategies. Tom is a veteran explorationist and mine-finder, holding senior positions in the past with Gibraltar Mines and Placer Dome amongst others. Tom has numerous ore deposit discoveries to his credit, including the Lomas Bayas and Fortuna de Cobre deposits in Chile. Tom has his finger on the pulse of the mining industry and his market savvy is a strong balance to his technical expertis

William Myckatyn (Lead Director)

Home telephone: 250-620-3626

Home Address:

6741 Millar
Horsefly, BC V0L 1L0

Bill Myckatyn is the co-founder of Quadra Mining Ltd. and the former President of Dayton Mining Corporation (a predecessor company of Pacific Rim). Amongst his previous career roles, Bill was the President and CEO of Gibraltar Mines, and stewarded the company’s $550 million CAD takeover by Westmin Resources in 1996. Bill is a mining engineer with extensive technical and management experience in mining development and operations.

Anthony Petrina

Home telephone: 604-987-4704

Home Address:

2330 Lloyd Ave
North Vancouver, BC V7P 2P5

Now retired, Tony Petrina has a wealth of experience in the mining industry. His 32-year career with Placer Dome included the roles of President, Vice-Chairman and CEO. Mr. Petrina was also a Director of Arequipa Resources and his expertise was integral in helping the company manage the takeover by Barrick

David Fagin

David Fagin lends his extensive experience in mining and finance to Pacific Rim’s Board as the Chair of the Audit Committee. David is the former COO of Homestake Mining Company and is currently a director of a number of mining and exploration companies, and of various mutual funds of the T. Rowe Price Group.

Thomas C. Shrake, President and CEO
Catherine McLeod-Seltzer, Chairman
Steven Kraus, CFO
Barbara Henderson, VP Investor Relations
William Gehlen, VP Exploration
Ronda Fullerton, Corporate Secretary

Senior Technical Staff: David Ernst, Chief Geologist

Transfer Agent: Computershare Trust Company of Canada

Auditors: PricewaterhouseCooperc, LLP
Vancouver, British Columbia

Who are the murderers?


This was really a foregone conclusion, but it is still nice to hear that the RIAA lost again:

Judge Refuses to Punish Lawyer for Anti-RIAA Blogging

An attorney defending against a music-piracy lawsuit didn’t cross ethical bounds by filing motions broadly attacking the recording industry and posting them on his blog, a magistrate judge has ruled, rejecting demands from the RIAA for monetary sanctions.

Do you suppose that the RIAA feels at all guilty about trying to suppress someone’s freedom of speech? Probably not, but it is a sign of how accustomed we have become to corporate oppression that there isn’t more outrage over this obvious SLAPP lawsuit….