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Earl Grey

Impunity Watch

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I know we eliminated the off-grid section, but I think with the kind of people we have amongst our membership now, it makes for a good discussion group of crucial issues of political, social, economical, and environmental varieties.

 

This first post here is my contribution to show how shitty Uber is even with Travis gone and comparing the murder of Kashoggi to a glitch.

 

The house of Saud is a big investor in Uber, and Saudi Arabia already has a sock puppet account denouncing Kashoggi here in the replies to this user’s status.

 

https://mobile.twitter.com/KarenAttiah/status/1193856709124444160

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Yeah, Uber is openly trash. I use taxis when I'm in a bigger city, and Lyft otherwise. Not sure how much better Lyft really is, though.

 

Zooming out, I do believe it's important to boycott actively evil companies 💯. 

 

And also, I believe there's effectively "no ethical consumption under capitalism." 😬

 

Multinational corporations, convoluted acquisitions and mergers, staggeringly complex, fluid, global supply chains, the predatory, value-extractive nature of capitalism itself, etc., all guarantee that pretty much every purchase we make intersects with exploitation on some level.

 

This is not to advocate a "what's the point of trying" malaise. Again, whenever possible, it's worthwhile to refuse yielding money or labor directly to certified ghouls.

 

But I think the latter insight, while depressing, is essential, if only to deflate the hubris of believing that "ethical consumerism" can truly co-exist within capitalism. From this realization might begin the process of envisioning, discussing and fighting for a fundamentally better way. 

 

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On 12/11/2019 at 1:30 PM, sean said:

 

Multinational corporations, convoluted acquisitions and mergers, staggeringly complex, fluid, global supply chains, the predatory, value-extractive nature of capitalism itself, etc., all guarantee that pretty much every purchase we make intersects with exploitation on some level.

 

 

A person can go crazy trying to be good.  It´s easy for ethical types to get anxious just grabbing a bite to eat or getting across town.  It´s easy to get depressed reading the news.  My mental health is shaky enough without the double whammy of excess goodness and excess information, so I minimize saintly behavior and knowledge of current events.  I eat animals.  I shop at Walmart.  I´ve never taken Uber but I would if I was more comfortable using my smartphone.  

 

There´s virtue in being morally clean, no question.  There´s also virtue in coming to terms with the inherent dirtiness and imperfection of life.  We do the best we can.  Or maybe we do a little less than our best.  I try to stay in good contact with family and friends.  I mostly (but not always) avoid saying mean things to people online.  I tip at the coffeeshop.  That´s about the most you can expect of me.

Edited by liminal_luke
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1 hour ago, liminal_luke said:

 

A person can go crazy trying to be good.  It´s easy for ethical types to get anxious just grabbing a bite to eat or getting across town.  It´s easy to get depressed reading the news.  My mental health is shaky enough without the double whammy of excess goodness and excess information, so I minimize saintly behavior and knowledge of current events.  I eat animals.  I shop at Walmart.  I´ve never taken Uber but I would if I was more comfortable using my smartphone.  

 

There´s virtue in being morally clean, no question.  There´s also virtue in coming to terms with the inherent dirtiness and imperfection of life.  We do the best we can.  Or maybe we do a little less than our best.  I try to stay in good contact with family and friends.  I mostly (but not always) avoid saying mean things to people online.  I tip at the coffeeshop.  That´s about the most you can expect of me.


To assure you, this isn’t about individuals shame about micro levels of existence, but about the assholes of the universe whether it’s Bolsonaro or Duterte, Xi or Putin, Zuckerberg or Orban, Kalanick and of course Trump and Modi.

 

Besides being a false comparison of your individual choices to the level of impact those named, you’re a good man and shouldn’t feel punished for eating meat or riding Uber. This is about awareness of how we are in a world where we aren’t given agency over ourselves because if how policies and economics cross technology, which in turn not only greatly aggravate existing societal and environmental issues, but create new ones as well.

 

In other words, you’re not the kind of person who we’re watching out for, you’re the kind of person who is one of us: caught in a world that should be better and one of the many voices who is not only already picking up the mess of the suits. And though we’ve all been forced by these circumstances, you are also a pair of hands who can join in and grab these assholes by the collar to force them to look outside of their bank accounts at the world they’re destroying that they are sheltered from experiencing while in their ivory towers.

Edited by Earl Grey
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Thanks @Earl Grey.  I´m not ashamed.  Well, not of eating meat or buying things that "intersect with exploitation" (great phrasing from Sean).  It´s more that I think there´s a balance to be struck.  We can try to arrange our lives in such a way that we don´t harm others and I believe there´s value in the attempt.  At the same time, it´s worth noting that such attempts will always fall short.  Perhaps capitalism is the problem, I don´t know.  Maybe it´s deeper than that, a fall from Eden endemic to civilization.  Things being what they are, I believe it´s simply impossible to live without harming other beings, try though we might.  

 

 

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1 minute ago, liminal_luke said:

Thanks @Earl Grey.  I´m not ashamed.  Well, not of eating meat or buying things that "intersect with exploitation" (great phrasing from Sean).  It´s more that I think there´s a balance to be struck.  We can try to arrange our lives in such a way that we don´t harm others and I believe there´s value in the attempt.  At the same time, it´s worth noting that such attempts will always fall short.  Perhaps capitalism is the problem, I don´t know.  Maybe it´s deeper than that, a fall from Eden endemic to civilization.  Things being what they are, I believe it´s simply impossible to live without harming other beings, try though we might.  

 

 


Right, the boycott approach actually isn’t as effective because of Indian and Chinese consumers who far outweigh the effects of conscious consumption as one example, but again, the balance isn’t really the issue here since that’s a personal practice that we are able to tweak with awareness.

 

The awareness for this thread is one that seeks a just and fair world by sharing with each other what the insidious machinations of the ogres at the top are using to control us.

 

So yes, work on yourself like we all do, but also know that sometimes working on the world through seeing the maggots and cockroaches screwing us over, so cleaning up their garbage by recognizing it’s garbage that none of us deserve to have dumped on us for their benefit is right. Whether it’s Bolsonaro burning the Amazon with China for soybeans or Orban taking money away from hospitals to redirect it towards the Hungarian football team, we see their crimes and refuse to accept it.

 

In the words of Howard Beale from Network, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore.”

 

 

I am not calling us to take to the streets like in Hong Kong, what I am doing is letting all of us use this thread as a means to bring in issues worth noticing that nobody has mentioned yet, which is of interest to me because I follow a lot of world events that are not often talked about, whether it is Sam Rainsy of the Cambodian opposition being barred from entry to the illegal mercury mining in Indonesia affecting health and the environment, and highlighting the individuals involved with said issues.

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47 minutes ago, Earl Grey said:


Right, the boycott approach actually isn’t as effective because of Indian and Chinese consumers who far outweigh the effects of conscious consumption as one example, but again, the balance isn’t really the issue here since that’s a personal practice that we are able to tweak with awareness.

 

The awareness for this thread is one that seeks a just and fair world by sharing with each other what the insidious machinations of the ogres at the top are using to control us.

 

So yes, work on yourself like we all do, but also know that sometimes working on the world through seeing the maggots and cockroaches screwing us over, so cleaning up their garbage by recognizing it’s garbage that none of us deserve to have dumped on us for their benefit is right. Whether it’s Bolsonaro burning the Amazon with China for soybeans or Orban taking money away from hospitals to redirect it towards the Hungarian football team, we see their crimes and refuse to accept it.

 

In the words of Howard Beale from Network, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore.”

 

 

I am not calling us to take to the streets like in Hong Kong, what I am doing is letting all of us use this thread as a means to bring in issues worth noticing that nobody has mentioned yet, which is of interest to me because I follow a lot of world events that are not often talked about, whether it is Sam Rainsy of the Cambodian opposition being barred from entry to the illegal mercury mining in Indonesia affecting health and the environment, and highlighting the individuals involved with said issues.

Sādhu! Sādhu! Sādhu! Thathaastu! Amen!

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We need to pick our battles, pick our charities.  Otherwise one's energies get too scattered.  Though in most daily activities one can at least go for the low hanging fruit, the easy stuff, the easy substitutions that make sense, without going whole hog.

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I think this piece by Tom Morello fits in with this topic. The lyrics describe what I have seen in here in the U.S.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, thelerner said:

We need to pick our battles, pick our charities.  Otherwise one's energies get too scattered.  Though in most daily activities one can at least go for the low hanging fruit, the easy stuff, the easy substitutions that make sense, without going whole hog.


Like I said, this isn’t about getting people to rise up, but a thread to share what’s going on that may otherwise not be well-known.

 

It’s not a guilt trip thread, it’s a “have you heard about what’s going on in [place] with [individual]?” 
 

As an example, when the Taliban blew up two Buddha statues, it wasn’t something to get people to act, but a “did you know about this?” To engage in conversation much like over in China on 11 September 2001, people were not talking about it to take action, but because it was something worth knowing, which I hoped that this thread would be used for, because friends in other countries here might give perspective from sources I haven’t heard about or issues I don’t know, such as Orban in Hungary and Modi in India.

 

Or perhaps more easily understood, similar to how the climate change thread here has ralis and Walker and others sharing different articles on the subject of climate change and discussion of such articles.

 

A news discussion thread, not a call to arms. And the theme is impunity.

Edited by Earl Grey
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sorry for the branch away. 

always sad when a good thread goes bad.. or drifts too off topic.

 

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On 11/18/2019 at 1:33 PM, thelerner said:

 

sorry for the branch away. 

always sad when a good thread goes bad.. or drifts too off topic.

 


no worries mate, it helps me see if my wording is clear enough so no one is confused by the words over the intent.

Edited by Earl Grey

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A couple articles I find actually complement one another, about how Israel's Netanyahu is the big inspiration for many populist demagogues and the lies of the false narrative of tech that equates it as evolution. 

 

https://codastory.com/disinformation/israel-populism-trump/

 

https://www.vox.com/the-highlight/2019/10/1/20887003/tech-technology-evolution-natural-inevitable-ethics

 

And a nice piece on how data doesn't mean change for fighting deforestation. 

 

https://www.earthisland.org/journal/index.php/magazine/entry/data-change

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https://www.rappler.com/newsbreak/investigative/245290-marcos-networked-propaganda-social-media

 

The Marcos's are at it again, and social media is making it easier to deceive others through the false narrative. 

 

And yes: Russian and Chinese trolls are working with paid PR firms to make this happen.

 

Party like it's 1984 instead of 1986 in Manila!

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On 11/18/2019 at 12:26 AM, Earl Grey said:

So Rajapaksa just won the Sri Lankan elections, and with another tilt towards China and a less-tolerant place for Muslims, here’s an article from last year talking about what the next few years may look like:

 

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/rajapaksa-heads-sri-lanka-government-181031132306514.html

 

And now this is less of a warning but a prediction, and soon possibly a prophecy...

 

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/sri-lanka-muslims-reason-fear-rajapaksa-era-191121085426396.html

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https://www.rappler.com/views/newsletters/246448-did-malacanang-say-press-is-free

 

"When a giant network is taken down, the smaller ones would be helpless targets. When a state-sponsored threat is carried out on one media entity that otherwise had the resources to put up a fight, the weaker ones can cower and cave in or just fold up. When the fourth estate is silenced, the ordinary citizens are next."

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