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The Sad Decline of Indymedia

It was a great idea when the Independent Media Center opened up its first website for the Seattle anti-WTO protests in December 1999. The first IMC website came out of years of alternative and grassroots media activism. By a strange quirk of fate, the Seattle IMC also included something called the "open newswire," an experiment that allowed every reader to be a reporter, if they wanted to get involved in DIY, participatory media production...
It was a great idea when the Independent Media Center opened up its first website for the Seattle anti-WTO protests in December 1999. The first IMC website came out of years of alternative and grassroots media activism. By a strange quirk of fate, the Seattle IMC also included something called the "open newswire," an experiment that allowed every reader to be a reporter, if they wanted to get involved in DIY, participatory media production. The IMC network recently observed its 3rd anniversary and the 100th IMC went online, but the IMC project is facing some serious problems which, if they aren't addressed by the supporters of the IMC network, will eventually destroy the wonderful idea that is Indymedia.
There are some that would argue that the Indymedia network needs a stronger organization to address its current and persistent problems. This may be somewhat true, but those of us who have pressed for reforms find ourselves at the mercy of a network of people who are afraid to step forward and make tough decisions. It might help if there were some more organized processes, but I see the chief problem with Indymedia these days to be a political one, not an organizational or technical problem.
The IMC Network has a statement of principles and so do most local IMCs. However, the political orientation of the IMC has never been firmly established. Other IMC volunteers and myself have strongly argued for a series of regional IMC meetings and conventions to resolve these questions. The problems with the IMC's vague politics is not so much what ideology it should embrace, rather what ideologies and content the IMC Network rejectsand opposes. This vagueness on politics has allowed an international network of right wingers and racists to abuse and disrupt the IMC websites, which has harmed the IMC's functionality and reputation in ways that may not be fixable without stepping on lots of toes.
If you are a regular visitor to the IMC-Global website ( http://www.indymedia.org), you may have noticed some big changes earlier this year. The "open" newswire was moved off the front page for a variety of reasons. The most diplomatic reason was that many felt that the features being created by local IMCs should be featured on the Global website. This was a solid idea and should have been implemented despite the other reasons. The messier reason why the open newsire was relocated was because the IMC Global volunteers were fighting a losing campaign against right wing disruption of the website. This disruption aimed to establish "free speech" space on the Indymedia websites for right wing views and racist posts--the people doing this knew that the liberal free speech attitudes of most IMC volunteers would paralyze them from implementing consistent moderation. This right wing attack also included the posting of constant anti-semitic content, right wing op-eds and articles (carefully stripped of their source infromation), conspiracy theories, and other crap designed to ruin the reputation of the Independent Media Network.
I was part of the IMC Global Newswire collective during this period and made proposals concerning a process to deal with this problems. I also painstakenly documented the attack patterns by the right wingers and showed that certain individuals were posting similar content at the same time to various IMCs. This campaign by our enemies was successful because the IMC volunteers refused to implement aggressive moderation and otherwise dragged their feet until the changes were made earlier this year.
What did we lose when the right-wingers won? First, we lost the Indymedia network as a public space for our activists. If you remember what the IMC websites were like in the year after Seattle, you will remember them as places where activists came together to talk about issues. After the right wingers had their way for a year, you would commonly hear activists complain about Indymedia and say that they didn't bother with Indymedia anymore.
Secondly, the inability of the IMC network to take aggresive action against racist and anti-semitic posts further damaged the Indymedia's reputation with Jewish people and people of color. We understand that some pro-Israel extremists think that anycriticism of Israel is anti-semitic, but the IMC network became a hotbed of just plain anti-Jewish articles, opinions, and comments. Part of the problem within the IMC network is that most activists refused to stand up to the free speech totalitarians within the network, who argued that everything posted should stay visible to the public. I've been a free speech advocate for many years and often considered myself to be a free speech zealot, but not even I would argue that our websites should provide anyspace for right wing and racist views. The racists have their websites--we don't need to use our limited resources to promote their hideous and offensive views.
The net result of this inaction is that racist and anti-semitic views became normalizedon Indymedia websites. Sure, newswire moderators would remove the occasional racist rant or picture, but lots of stuff was left online. This normalizationof racist content showed the racists and right wingers that they could have their way with Indymedia. It also alienated lots of potential Indymedia supporters. Why should a Jewish activist participate in an alternative media project that tolerates hate speech against that person?
I'm also convinced that the right wing posted lots of conspiracy content to ruin the repuation of Indymedia. I have no problem with the occasional conspiracy-type article posted to an IMC website, but I think there was good circumstantial evidence that the right wing was posted conspiracy content with the aim of damaging the reputation of Indymedia, not just in the eyes of the public, but in the eyes of the chief stakeholders: the activist community (and movements).
I still remain a big supporter of the Indymedia project. The Indymedia project has become a revolutionary force that has greatly empowered DIY journalists, rank-and-file activists, and average working people. This essay is not meant to criticize IMC volunteers, rather to call out to supporters of alternative media projects to speak up and demand that the IMC make some tough decisions to address these vexing and persistent problems. The Indymedia project has great potential. Let's not throw out the baby with bathwater in our efforts not to step on toes.

eh.. 08.Dec.2002 14:00

Agent Orange

I don't think that Indymedia is declining, I see it as growing. I am personally not afraid of the idiotic posts of people with tunnel vision or repugnant, dogmatic ideas about race, sex, sexuality, class or religion. Nor do I believe that it is the responsibility of any steering committee to shield the many from offensive posts. See, I think that the whole point of Indymedia is that it poses a challenge to any and all who read the site: if you don't like the content, make it better and/or rebut the piece, if only briefly. There are some circumstances (like Lamet Vali, for instance) where it is better to simply not dignify the the knuckle-dragging, mouth-breather with a response.

I also think that we should not have to spend all of our time doing damage control--which is why I think that the compost bin feature is rather effective because posts that are beligerant and serve only to tear down without engaging in the dialogue are sectioned-off serving as an example of what we seek to discourage.

There are legitamate arguments put forth by people of ideologies that are do not have the prefix anarcho- and I believe that they have a place in an independant format. I would like to cultivate a culture of high expectations for the quality and content of debate and journalism. These commonly held beliefs will be a meeting point for divergent ideas and source of credibility for the site while at the same time improving all who participate. I believe that the only censor or filter should be in my head.

As many may have noticed, I post articles that attempt to document real conspiracy. I do not expect anyone in an open, DIY format to shield me from people who think that chemtrails and other covert programs are poppycock. I know that they are not and will continue to present credible evidence to advance my argument. And, incidentally, I am not a right-winger attempting to discredit IMC. Quite the opposite, I am trying to represent material that, if absent, will discredit IMC for not addressing it.

The IMC network is voluntary and decentralized. There are bound to be warts. Kind of like democracy: we as a people are going to make mistakes, but none so grave that I would consider relinquishing my freedom to make them.

so start your own 08.Dec.2002 14:15

.

If you don't like the way it's being run, why not start your own?

Quit whining.

Uhhh 08.Dec.2002 14:51

anon

I agree with chuck. And to the person that replied above me, he does participate in a news service, infoshop.org so why dont you stop telling other people to "stop whining" and listen to their suggestions. It didn't sound like whining to me.
~A

Agent Orange 08.Dec.2002 15:15

a1

I've seen just what chuck0 describes and lots of people who share your feelings AO,and it's become clear to me what the fundamental difference between the two viewpoints is. I think the agent orange camp sees this as entertainment, in much the same way that the Art Bell show is, a sort of info-tainment.

Saying that the whole point of Indymedia is that it pose a challenge to any and all who read the site, this is like a game or a hobby, like chess or something, an intellectual exercise, an end in it's self. I don't think this is the best we can do.

and? 08.Dec.2002 15:18

IMCer pointoinfinity@yahoo.com (i accept spam)

I see the chief problem with Indymedia these days to be a political one.---"Chuck0" though i am not a 'political' person, i sort of feel that this is the "problem" with the human world, that to much politics are involved. (should imc reflect "the real world" media or a "good world" one?) This vagueness on politics has allowed an international network of right wingers and racists to abuse and disrupt the IMC websites, which has harmed the IMC's functionality and reputation in ways that may not be fixable without stepping on lots of toes. some have suggested that this apparent "right wing invasion", where people who clearly don't seem to care about the issues--such as tree-sitting to protest logging of those things that help clean the air we breath--*contribute* "articles" or make comments that can be deemed non-constructive and even disruptive to certain grassroots efforts of certain IMCing parties, is hurting the IMC movement more than helping it. to this i would ask, does "freedom" necessarily harm the society (or the individual), or, like the "guns don't kill people" argument, is it people abusing their freedom in order to abuse/oppress their fellow human beings? the argument that IMC is "corrupted" is resembles the one that is presented that says that since people have started "hacking" (maliciously so) with computers that we have to redo the computer thing; make them fortresses of data--many people feel that data should remain "freely accessible", that restrictive (secretive) measures to insure the data integrity of computer devices should not be employed (i won't go into the short argument on this) because of the potentially negative effects that such actions might have on the evolution of the (i will not use the term "computer industry"..i will not use the term "computer industry"...) computer. similarly, many--as i do--feel that IMC is fine the way it is and that it should (ideally) be left up to the supposedly true "controllers" of imc--the people (even the evil ones cuz their our brothers and sisters too *sigh*--to think about what they see/hear/think. the alleged "right wing (maybe even cointelpro..who knows..maybe that's why the reportedly 170,000 homeland security office employees is needed) noise operation", in (conspiracy) theory is supposed to work to a certain end, even if the means of such operations aren't known. this suggests that there is a purpose for such operations. some suggests that the simple purpose is to "disrupt", but of course, others--like myself--feel that it's a little deeper than this: that control of the sentient and living being itself is the ultimate goal (has to be, considering that attempts to absolutely control the environments that such beings exist saturate history). as far as "functionality" goes, it seems to be working fine ;) (mom gave good advice and some of the best she gave was "don't tell people all of your business"; one, they don't need to know everything and two, they may use what you tell them against you) if the style of posting bothers people, that's as they say a "personal problem". if there's actually some evil (or even just purely mischievous) force out there that seeks to wreak havoc with IMC, beyond be able to prove such a thing, the effects should be discernable. this is why i insist that imc is doing just fine. tweak the database, blah blah, things should work out. if they don't work out, oh well, that's life :) isn't it weird and wonderful. okay, so if "racist" posts--that focus somewhat on race--appear, whose *problem* is that? IMCs or the IMCers (who are supposed to be IMC)? again, any person who can see that talking about "Jews are meanies" or "Islam and speakers of Arabic are not civilized" might just be a bit counterproductive (considering that some of us have a goal of BRIDGING THE GAPS BETWEEN US ALL and collectively causing for 'universal/world peace') and can safely be ignored. as well, it should strengthen the resolve of non-racists to continue on their path of resistence against cultural and cultured ignorance. do you really have to be told how to think? shit. this article could cause "dissention" in IMC if it weren't for the fact that IMC isn't anything more than some people inputting their feelings, emotions, caring (or sometimes hate, spite and demonic vitriol) into the machine and seeing what output can be generated. IMC does not have "great potential"--IMC ISPOTENTIAL!! (IMO) the weak link theory applies to popular and mass media: that possibly one feeble-minded complainer will have a problem with content, therefore, content must be controlled and monitored. IMC isn't monitored for dirty words (at the present moment) and it shouldn't necessarily be monitored for "stupid, potentially disruptive" content... ...so should there be an all inclusive "ideological" view for IMC? if so, couldn't it involve a common ("self-evident") ideology--a "golden ideology", if you will--that all should be able to understand and concur with deep within themeselves, even if they may not outwardly acknowledge such? what does it mean to insist that "indymedia activism" is an entailment for IMC participation? what does "free press" mean (and is anyone trying to disrupt The Oregonian, or the LA Times, or are they just puppet papers being used to disrupt a potentially "dynamical society")? does free press simply mean that those who controlling the "pressing" of the news are free or what? blah blah--if everybody goes to the "about" page for this IMC, they know what the deal is about this IMC. this should be a warning to any "right wing monkey wrenchers" that IMC has a specific intent with regards to the news that is carried by this news service. "Then and now, the stories told through Indymedia come from the hearts and minds of people on the frontlines of the struggle for justice against tyranny." uh oh--so if i'm posting crud here like "UR all a bunch of pot smoking hippies" and "you deserve to be beaten by the police for standing up to them peacefully" or "we will meet one day...i will be the one standing and you will be sitting in a chair" (i remember this thinly veiled "Orwellian" *pseudo/threat* being made), i should be smart enough to read the about page before making such posts or face the consequences of watching my posts dissapear? so then, i should have no reason to come back with an "IMC is censoring!" article because i should have known that i would in fact be "censored"? you calling me stupid? :) ah, so this is and isn't "free press". i at first thought that this was a site where people could speak freely blah blah. i now understand that no IMC is necessarily a free speech haven but that IMCs should necessarily be one for "good" and "positive" speech. ah, now i see: this place is a haven for people who care to not be assholes and who have the capacity to truly care about other beings and the omniverse in which we all (apparently) inhabit. so now i realize that there are people working on behalf of the IMC that are indeed wiser than me. they realized that there are a million sites where "destructive"--no 'good' can come about it--speech can be posted and so they, in the spirit of 'love' have provided IMC sites for *us* (hey, maybe those "conservatives" are providing those heinous sites because they love each others way of thinking..let's see if they love living in a world without trees and clean water, heh heh...). okay, so this means that i shouldn't see anymore determinably "disruptive" postings at this particular IMC,right? hm. or maybe just the "style" of posting will change, considering that *they're* still out to get us*. :) oh well. okay, "LWVov posse", "Trilox" et al, here you go. http://portland.indymedia.org/about.php3 so, how do you folks i just mentioned feel about this link? (and no, i don't expect a reply..but you're free to provide one) maybe all that needs to be done (for now) is to make the link to the IMC "about" page a little bigger (and maybe put a small "disclaimer" on the main page).

<br> 08.Dec.2002 16:37

IMCer

and sometimes <br> in an important tag.

(and thanks for fixing my post, whomever)

rushing (yeh, i'm messing up) 08.Dec.2002 16:39

IMCer

I see the chief problem with Indymedia these days to be a political one.---"Chuck0"

though i am not a 'political' person, i sort of feel that this is the "problem" with the human world, that to much politics are involved. (should imc reflect "the real world" media or a "good world" one?) This vagueness on politics has allowed an international network of right wingers and racists to abuse and disrupt the IMC websites, which has harmed the IMC's functionality and reputation in ways that may not be fixable without stepping on lots of toes.

some have suggested that this apparent "right wing invasion", where people who clearly don't seem to care about the issues--such as tree-sitting to protest logging of those things that help clean the air we breath--*contribute* "articles" or make comments that can be deemed non-constructive and even disruptive to certain grassroots efforts of certain IMCing parties, is hurting the IMC movement more than helping it. to this i would ask, does "freedom" necessarily harm the society (or the individual), or, like the "guns don't kill people" argument, is it people abusing their freedom in order to abuse/oppress their fellow human beings?

the argument that IMC is "corrupted" is resembles the one that is presented that says that since people have started "hacking" (maliciously so) with computers that we have to redo the computer thing; make them fortresses of data--many people feel that data should remain "freely accessible", that restrictive (secretive) measures to insure the data integrity of computer devices should not be employed (i won't go into the short argument on this) because of the potentially negative effects that such actions might have on the evolution of the (i will not use the term "computer industry"..i will not use the term "computer industry"...) computer.

similarly, many--as i do--feel that IMC is fine the way it is and that it should (ideally) be left up to the supposedly true "controllers" of imc--the people (even the evil ones cuz their our brothers and sisters too *sigh*--to think about what they see/hear/think.

the alleged "right wing (maybe even cointelpro..who knows..maybe that's why the reportedly 170,000 homeland security office employees is needed) noise operation", in (conspiracy) theory is supposed to work to a certain end, even if the means of such operations aren't known. this suggests that there is a purpose for such operations. some suggests that the simple purpose is to "disrupt", but of course, others--like myself--feel that it's a little deeper than this: that control of the sentient and living being itself is the ultimate goal (has to be, considering that attempts to absolutely control the environments that such beings exist saturate history).

as far as "functionality" goes, it seems to be working fine ;) (mom gave good advice and some of the best she gave was "don't tell people all of your business"; one, they don't need to know everything and two, they may use what you tell them against you)

if the style of posting bothers people, that's as they say a "personal problem". if there's actually some evil (or even just purely mischievous) force out there that seeks to wreak havoc with IMC, beyond be able to prove such a thing, the effects should be discernable. this is why i insist that imc is doing just fine. tweak the database, blah blah, things should work out. if they don't work out, oh well, that's life :) isn't it weird and wonderful.

okay, so if "racist" posts--that focus somewhat on race--appear, whose *problem* is that? IMCs or the IMCers (who are supposed to be IMC)? again, any person who can see that talking about "Jews are meanies" or "Islam and speakers of Arabic are not civilized" might just be a bit counterproductive (considering that some of us have a goal of BRIDGING THE GAPS BETWEEN US ALL and collectively causing for 'universal/world peace') and can safely be ignored. as well, it should strengthen the resolve of non-racists to continue on their path of resistence against cultural and cultured ignorance. do you really have to be told how to think? shit.

this article could cause "dissention" in IMC if it weren't for the fact that IMC isn't anything more than some people inputting their feelings, emotions, caring (or sometimes hate, spite and demonic vitriol) into the machine and seeing what output can be generated.

IMC does not have "great potential"--IMC ISPOTENTIAL!! (IMO)

the weak link theory applies to popular and mass media: that possibly one feeble-minded complainer will have a problem with content, therefore, content must be controlled and monitored. IMC isn't monitored for dirty words (at the present moment) and it shouldn't necessarily be monitored for "stupid, potentially disruptive" content...

...so should there be an all inclusive "ideological" view for IMC? if so, couldn't it involve a common ("self-evident") ideology--a "golden ideology", if you will--that all should be able to understand and concur with deep within themeselves, even if they may not outwardly acknowledge such? what does it mean to insist that "indymedia activism" is an entailment for IMC participation? what does "free press" mean (and is anyone trying to disrupt The Oregonian, or the LA Times, or are they just puppet papers being used to disrupt a potentially "dynamical society")? does free press simply mean that those who controlling the "pressing" of the news are free or what?

blah blah--if everybody goes to the "about" page for this IMC, they know what the deal is about this IMC. this should be a warning to any "right wing monkey wrenchers" that IMC has a specific intent with regards to the news that is carried by this news service.

"Then and now, the stories told through Indymedia come from the hearts and minds of people on the frontlines of the struggle for justice against tyranny."

uh oh--so if i'm posting crud here like "UR all a bunch of pot smoking hippies" and "you deserve to be beaten by the police for standing up to them peacefully" or "we will meet one day...i will be the one standing and you will be sitting in a chair" (i remember this thinly veiled "Orwellian" *pseudo/threat* being made), i should be smart enough to read the about page before making such posts or face the consequences of watching my posts dissapear? so then, i should have no reason to come back with an "IMC is censoring!" article because i should have known that i would in fact be "censored"? you calling me stupid? :)

ah, so this is and isn't "free press". i at first thought that this was a site where people could speak freely blah blah. i now understand that no IMC is necessarily a free speech haven but that IMCs should necessarily be one for "good" and "positive" speech. ah, now i see: this place is a haven for people who care to not be assholes and who have the capacity to truly care about other beings and the omniverse in which we all (apparently) inhabit.

so now i realize that there are people working on behalf of the IMC that are indeed wiser than me. they realized that there are a million sites where "destructive"--no 'good' can come about it--speech can be posted and so they, in the spirit of 'love' have provided IMC sites for *us* (hey, maybe those "conservatives" are providing those heinous sites because they love each others way of thinking..let's see if they love living in a world without trees and clean water, heh heh...).

okay, so this means that i shouldn't see anymore determinably "disruptive" postings at this particular IMC,right? hm. or maybe just the "style" of posting will change, considering that *they're* still out to get us*&

>>. :) oh well.

okay, "LWVov posse", "Trilox" et al, here you go.

http://portland.indymedia.org/about.php3

so, how do you folks i just mentioned feel about this link? (and no, i don't expect a reply..but you're free to provide one)

maybe all that needs to be done (for now) is to make the link to the IMC "about" page a little bigger (and maybe put a small "disclaimer" on the main page).


truth in advertising 08.Dec.2002 16:57

...

The article makes a pretty good point, in that an organization describing itself as an INDEPENDENT media center would seem, to itself anyway, one might think, to be a tad hypocritical to censor articles and viewpoints not in line with it's own publicly admitted bias. This is not the case.

Everyone with half a brain cell in their heads knows that the corporate media is full of distortions and bias. The
Marxists in charge of most of our universities will tell you that it is a Right Wing bias. The Libertarian think-tanks go to great legnths to try to prove quite the opposite.

Regardless of what your Journalism Professor told you, bias in journalism is inescapable. The great thing about Indymedia is the wide SPECTRUM of biases avaliable to the discerning reader. Yes, sorting through the "crap" can get tedious, but a very wise trickster once wrote that one of his favorite methods of conciousness expansion was to read a well-written article by someone with whom he thoroughly disagreed once a day, every day.

If the Marxist/Chomskyite contingent of Indymedia wishes to censor the content of the site and channel the political focus, then, therefore, the name needs to be changed, for it will no longer be an INDEPENDENT media center, but one with a definitely POLITICAL IDEOLOGY DEPENDENT bias, content, and focus. For it to not publicly admit this, but remain ander the aegis of "Indepenence" will only be the basest hypocritical fraud.

Chuck: another Guru of the establishment left 08.Dec.2002 17:10

real anarchist (who QUESTIONS 9/11)

Isn't it strange how many "leftists" go around condemning "conspiracy theories" with robotic consistency!
That's because the left is highly infiltrated by agents of the state.

Since the sixties, the establishment has vowed never to allow any movements to become successful again. So they started up COINTELPRO and started funding massive programs for intelligence operatives.

Under this cloaked fascist system the left is allowed to organize by the elite's rules only. When you step outside of the establishment left's box (Chomsky, FAIR, your local dogmatic peacenicks working through institutions like universities, etc.), you end up like Mumia, Malcolm X, or Judy Barry, or your local anarchist in prison for some trumped up charge). Hell, even if you are a successful peacenick....you end up like Martin Luther King Jr.

If you want to be safe from state repression, the key is to remain small, unsuccessful, and dogmatic in your tactics and preaching,.....and NEVER QUESTION THE UNDERLYING PRINCIPLES OF CAPITALIST "DEMOCRACY".

Reformists (defined by their serialized action; those 30 or 40 peacenicks standing outside of City Hall every week GETTING NOWHERE, never forming networks, never thinking big or idealistically, never questioning their Gurus like Chomsky, never becoming confrontational, always OBEYING the police and government officials [unless they are in a big action where confrontational anarchists are the real police targets and they feel safe sitting down in the street doing "civil disobedience"], never stepping outside of their middle-class mentalities, dismissing those who draw all the right connections about 9/11, dismissing those who call for a diversity of tactics) are always left alone!!

Question EVERYTHING, even your "comrades" when they go around dismissing evidence with labels and dogmatic retorts.

 http://questionsquestions.net/gatekeepers.html

Examples Please 08.Dec.2002 18:33

David Kornholio

I have heard and read quite a bit of generic criticism regaurding Chomsky from several sectors, including Mike Ruppert. Yet, I have not heard the specific critisisms. I admit that I am a big fan, and most, if not all of what I have heard/read/viewed of Chomsky seems dead-on and hard hitting.

Can anyone provide examples of what Noam has said/done that is objectionable, or leads one to believe that he is pro-status-quo?

This response holds true here, as well..... 08.Dec.2002 18:35

totalizing revolution

The problem is non-dialectical thinking
by totalizing revolution 5:40pm Sun Dec 8 '02 comment#2948

[comment posted here:  http://hamilton.indymedia.org:8081/front.php3?article_id=2933&group=webcast]



"What I'm saying is that the "elite dynasty," and similar ways of articulating what we know in our guts is wrong about this world, can move focus off of ourselves, off of our communities, and thus render us misguided and powerless. It also disengages us from critiques of and challenges to SYSTEMS of oppression."

The problem is not only the left's infiltration, although I do agree that this very well could be one aspect of the reality of political mobilization in the 21st century. The big problem is also an inability on the part of the North American left to see things in totalities and dialectically.

Take this above quote as an example. The writer is obviously incapable of seeing the link between elite dynasties and the structure of what he sees as "systems of oppression". The systems are not merely structures. Structures are not *things* outside of human action. It is a mistake of the bourgeois serialized thought process to analyze through a structuralist's lense.

Structures are not separate from the people who pull all of the strings. It is true that we all bear the responsibility for aknowledging our part in these structures and changing them. However, we must also take a serious look at the way the elite fabricate perceived realities in order for the "everday cogs in the machine" to accept these structures without questioning.

The reality is, history is moved by people and people are also moved by history. We are simultaneoulsy victims and actors of history. Those who hold power within the structures do conspire to perpetuate their fascistic dynasties and shape history to their ends. As long as the left keeps looking at this complex dilemma one-dimensionally we will never find the best means of overthrowing the old structures and DYNASTIES, for they are one and the same.

Fyew!!!...That good to hear!!! 08.Dec.2002 19:08

Guru Mike

"I still remain a big supporter of the Indymedia project."

Guru Chuck has spoken. We can all feel relieved that he is in full support of our endeavours. Carry on people.

Just to let you know, I am also in full support of the indymedia project.....that is, as long as Chuck doesn't change his mind.

Guru Mike signing off. May the Infoshop force be with you!

hey *real anarchist*! 08.Dec.2002 20:14

GRINGO STARS gringo_stars@attbi.com

You mention that it is not a truly "independant" media, but one with an ideological bias. You are right. And I like IndyMedia like this. There is NO SUCH THING as a bias-less source. Even when reporting "just the facts" the reporter chooses which facts to use, which to leave out, and the order of facts presented. There are no humans, or even organisations, that are devoid of motives, ideas, agendas or feelings. To pretend a mythical "objectivity" is both unrealistic and dishonest.

At least I know where IndyMedia is coming from; the activist left. They are honest and upfront about this. They don't hide behind a false front of "objectivity." I appreciate this.

Corporate media is already overwhelmingly omnipresent, so the right wing side of things is already vastly over-represented. So let's have the anti-government left have a say in things this time around, ok?

I see no censoring; I only see composting, which means ONE EXTRA MOUSECLICK to see whatever right-wing spam you want to see. That's not censorship. That's "keeping it real" for the anti-The-Man left. It's levelling the playing field.

Chomsky -- Decline of the Establishment Left 08.Dec.2002 20:58

Tyrannosaurus Chomsky?

In our disguised fascist system Noam Chomsky plays an important role: he helps maintain the facade of democracy. To the American elite, Chomsky is a virtual asset. Here's why:

1. Chomsky has become a walking, talking, lecturing contradictionŚ-and it helps to confuse people. Confusion is one way to sow insecurity and instability in groups already alienated and marginalized from the current modes of action:

- He calls the education system a "system of imposed ignorance" and then accepts honorary degrees all over the place (including one from University of Toronto not long after George Bush Sr. accepted the very same degree!!!!!), therefore reinforcing its perceived importance in society. Which one is it going to be Chomsky, imposed ignorance and therefore institutionalized oppression that demands our condemnation, or a system to venerate and seek status/recognition from?

- In the past, he has referred to the state as "institutionalized violence" and has stated that corporations cannot be reformed of democratized. To our utter dismay he is also known for preaching that hope exists within our government institutions...you know, those very institutions brutally and violently oppressing the world's poor.....those very institutions that co-exist and are part and parcel of the corporate system.

- Despite his past discussions on the contradiction between freedom of speech in the media and the lack of access to the major networks (which demand absurd time constraints on issues of global importance); despite his past discussions on media distortion, censorship and the 'manufacturing of consent'; despite the people suffering in jail for having spoken the truth a little too boisterously and passionately; despite the assassination of influential activists; despite the third-world conditions, including third-world-like police repression, in African-American ghettos; despite all of this, Chomsky still boasts that the American system and government provides a commendable amount of freedom to engage in various positiveŚfalling short of revolutionaryŚactions. He rarely, if ever, admits that any action truly harming U.S. corporate interest and exposing the extent of corruption is immediately subdued, often very brutally.

- He has frequently dismissed attempts at discrediting his work as "conspiratorialist" with the retort: "it's an institutional analysis". Now we find him dismissing 9/11 skeptics, offering their own 'institutional analyses', with the very same ignorance and arrogance with which right wing hawks have attacked him! At one point he even referred to the alternative 9/11 information on the Internet as "an internet conspiracy theory" without offering any further analysis.

- Despite the plethora of facts proving irregularities in the official media version of 9/11 and proving the existence of a great deception being carried out on the world, Chomsky patently refuses to acknowledge this form of alternative journalism at a time when it is so drastically needed. So much for Mr. Manufacturing Consent and his 'outstanding moral integrity', for he is showing intellectual elitism in his will to bend to left side of a fascist system!

- Although he has lectured extensively on the role of oil in geopolitics and war, since 9/11 Chomsky has been focusing on trivial semantic arguments to downplay the role of oil in this present surge towards war. He now draws the distinction between "control over" and "access to" oil, as if control doesn't inherently imply an indirect or direct access to the mid-east oil supply; as if control over oil diminishes its role in the drive for geostrategic economic control through brute military force and "regime change". He is completely ignoring the writings of vile and powerful policy makers, such as Zbigniew Brzezinski, who discussed the selling of this new war for geostrategic control over oil (FOUR YEARS BEFORE 9/11 in his book The Grand Chessboard) as requiring a Pearl Harbor-like event to convince Americans of the unthinkable: namely, a war with practically the entire world.

2. As an enormously influential figure to the American left, Chomsky's positions effectively determine the direction of mainstream political dissidence. This fact, combined with his increasingly submissive takes on what is seen by many as a new rise in global fascism, helps to subdue the strength and effectiveness of the anti-capitalist/anti-war movement.

What does this mean?

Faced with increasingly totalitarian "anti-terror" laws and Orwellian government intelligence networks, the left is witnessing the preparation for the total criminalization of alternative grassroots political action. New Nazi-like immigration policies alone have resulted in the kidnapping and abuse of thousands of non-white immigrants since September 11th. Yet as he tours the continent speaking out against American foreign policy--as if nothing has changed in the past decade--Chomsky scarcely gives mention to the urgency of these times. His disregard for the growing police state in America and the rest of the Western countries is leading the left towards a cliff. You cannot successfully struggle against a system that continues to deceive you and condition your reactions. It is high time for people to admit their bad faith and open their eyes to the fascism that is American imperialism.

Our questions for Chomsky should be: how can someone who has been so openly critical of the American system for decades, suddenly fall in line with the mainstream media-accepted 'doves' of the American intelligentsia? What makes you suddenly seek acceptance within this brutal and hypocritical system?

Hey Gringo 08.Dec.2002 21:01

real anarchist

"You mention that it is not a truly "independant" media, but one with an ideological bias."

Check the comments again. It wasn't me. I don't follow the myth of objectivity.

Another David Cornesque rant 08.Dec.2002 21:22

no more lies

Here we go again.

Rants like Chuck0s always start out by raising legitimate concerns about the presence of racists, anti-semites and right wingers on Indymedia, but then they go into lumping government and corporate conspiracy theories with hate mongers. These apologists are sounding more and more like the Ford Foundation-funded whiny progressives who claim to be worried about one thing or the other interfering with the work of so-called "real" activists.

You don't have to be a rocket scientist to see that the imperialists have invented a million-and-one ways to undermine the left and will stop at nothing to do it. They are not above sending their armies in to join progressive and radical groups, sit on their boards, volunteer at Indymedia, write for progressive publications, help out with the community outreach, and even go as far as posing as activists throwing bricks into shop windows.

Pollyannas like Chuck0 seem to think that there's some imaginary border between the right and the left that even the imperialists would not dare cross, as if there is some sort of tacit agreement between the two and they really care about honoring and respecting the left's territory. I am also too young to have experienced the Sixties and all the COINTEL PRO shit that happened back then but I'm not naiive. Much of this same kind of infiltrating was happening back then, and now they have had about 40 years to perfect and update their infiltrating skills. They know that the left is aware of old COINTEL PRO tactics so why wouldn't they invent new ones?

Sometimes I wonder if the anger directed toward those who post conspiracy theories is really displaced agression and a way of forestalling the inevitable: facing up to the fact that the old tactics are useless and swalllowing some of that yankee pride. I also wonder what he saw on this wire lately that got his boxers in a bunch.

Michael Ruppert isn't the only one with the goods on Chomsky. Michael Parent has made some bold criticisms of him as well, for instance, Chomsky's unflinching belief in the Warren Commission report of the JFK assassination, in spite of his access to more credible information. HA! I wonder if Chuck0 buys the Warren Commission report since he finds conspiracy theories so objectionable!

These conspiracy denial arguments keep going around and around in circles. A theory alleging complicity is deemed not true because it hasn't been verified by the mainstream media. But the mainstream media refuses to thorougly investigate the allegations because they are unwilling or unable to get a straight answer from the parties allegedly involved. Then the parties involved in the alleged conspiracy invent their own story, which gets passed on to the mainstream media who then passes this version on to the public. Then people like Chuck0 complain when they see an article on Indymedia which differs from this version.

So Chuck, would you care for some brie to go with your whine?

Typical Chuck0 08.Dec.2002 21:31

LZ

"HA! I wonder if Chuck0 buys the Warren Commission report since he finds conspiracy theories so objectionable!"

Actually he does!!! I was on the StopTheWto@topica list with him and he actually tried to ridicule my alternative 9/11 news posts by interjecting cynical remarks about hijacked planes being behind the grassy knoll.

Typical pseudo-left ignorance and arrogance.

For those who are interested..... 08.Dec.2002 22:16

PDXer/Hamiltonian

There is a similar debate going on at Hamilton Indymedia on three separate 9/11 posts.

Check it out:


Conspiracy Reality: the Bush Family, the Nazis and their Dynasty
 http://hamilton.indymedia.org:8081/front.php3?article_id=2933&group=webcast

MANY OF THE 9-11 "HIJACKERS" ARE STILL ALIVE.
 http://hamilton.indymedia.org:8081/front.php3?article_id=2926&group=webcast

SHOCKING REVELATIONS: US Government, Not Terrorists, Picked 9-11 Date
 http://hamilton.indymedia.org:8081/front.php3?article_id=2923&group=webcast

Chuck is exposed.....Moving ON 08.Dec.2002 22:41

Foxy Loxy

Moving ON
8:40pm Sun Dec 8 '02 (Modified on 10:10pm Sun Dec 8 '02)
article#37241

We know our government is run by fascists. Now what?

So "Dubya" as we like to call him, is a Nazi. Well, we know that. Those of us who didn't know that before 9/11 have it figured out now, except those who don't want to know. But all I see here is a bunch of Chicken Littles squawking around about how the sky is falling. My question is, "Now what do we do?"

It's not that I'm not scared. I'm terrified, of the man and of the future. But I can't stand around wringing my hands waiting for them to cart me away to the ovens. Also, I can't see throwing bombs under the present circumstances. Not only do they have more bombs, but "Dubya" would love to have an excuse to put more of my brothers and sisters behind bars.

So what do we do?

A few suggestions:

Organize. Build lines of communication that are difficult to intercept or break. Make alliances with people outside of the US of A (not that anyone can escape the arm of the US these days) Continue to try to make other people (not the converted) understand how US policy is creating terrorists and using them to make us slaves to our fears. Refuse to be terrified, or at least refuse to act out of fear.

But what I want is for other people to make additional suggestions that we can act on. Post your suggestions here. But please, not more "oh my god he's evil" posts. We know that. We are behaving like those silly women in bad films who stand around and scream while the bad guys murder everyone. Less screaming, more planning, people.

Brief Points 09.Dec.2002 01:26

bob, carol, ted &amp; alice

I just wanted to ad a few *brief* points since others have expounded at great length about things relevant and not so relevant.

-There seems to be some debate about the meaning of the word independent as applied to IndyMedia. My understanding of independence in the IndyMedia context would be that IndyMedia has no sponsors, CEO's or Board Members to tell it what to do. I don't think that independence refers in any way to left or right bias.

-I agree that things overtly racist, confrontational or non-responsive should continue to go to the "recycling bin." But I also believe that those of us visiting this site are intelligent enough to wade through the pre-packaged, right-wing, COINTELPRO nonsense (most of which is ignored, anyway) to get to the real deal info we want.

So since I in no way want to get into a philosophical discussion about the role of IndyMedia in the omniverse, my more concrete suggestion would be to add to the logo at the top of the page something after the "anyone may post their stories" part (could definitely use an increase in the font size, too) emphasizing that if truly "anyone" can post their stories, then we're going to see a lot of different opinions, facts and lies and that the IndyMedia surfer must be an informed, engaged adult who's willing to hear it all. Something like that, but phrased a hell of a lot better.

Chuck Munson = Fake Anarchist 09.Dec.2002 01:31

Free Speech

Those of us that had to misfortune of being in the same activist organization as Chuck Monson know the truth: He's a pompous pain in the butt trying to impose himself as the leader, the chief ideologue and strategist of the movement.

In his arrogance he doesn't understand that "leader" and "anarchist" are not synonymous, in fact he insists that everybody obediently prostrate themselves in front of His Majesty Chuck0.

That's why he's so hated by local activists.

Best advice: prevent him from poisoning the activist community or suffer his pompous ass leadership.

chuck spammer 09.Dec.2002 02:27

sean (sydney)

chuck0 -

why do you have to spam every fucking newswire on the network with your rantings?

sean

controlling public debate 09.Dec.2002 03:01

Jackass

Sounds eerily similar to the kind of rationale used by a State that supplies support to 'freedom fighters' so long as they support the supplier's objectives, then calling them 'terrorists' when they don't.

Or like Dr. Frankenstein who discovers his creation has a mind its own.

Or like a parent who is happy as long as their offspring are infantile but threatened by them when they act independently.

Or like corporate-owned media that extols the virtues of a free-press but becomes fearful when their opinions are challenged, because they can't own the debate.

response 09.Dec.2002 03:43

XahXhaX heresy@sdf.lonestar.org

Back to the topic on hand....
It seems to me that an organization claiming to bring information and news that the mainstream doesn't should be composed of people who are, in essence, actually independant. This post speaks from the perspective of someone who stops just short of claiming themself to be a 'left-winger', and it may not have been the original intention, but the entire piece is mostly just a complaint toward 'right-wingers'.
I don't claim to understand why people feel a need to summarize themself and their way of thinking under an umbrella term like left or right winger, but it's certainly not the approach that this site should be based upon.

Freedom of speech does not force this site to publish the racist rantings of some random jerkoff. Last I checked, you also have the freedom to tell them to take it somewhere else. The point is to be a source of news, but as such the news has to be accurate and credible. If there's no real backing for racist propaganda, which there never is, then it can't be considered worthy news or article material, and therefore can be rejected without fear of hypocrisy. Conspiracies also routinely lack any actual foundation of proof or evidence, so they're also coming to the wrong place. This is, of course, assuming that submissions are being made that could be considered either of these things.

What I am saying here is that it's all people. People are messing up this website/organization/whatever. Regardless of how you'd like to group them together, it's all the actions of certain individuals, not a special group, and not only of a certain political stance, such as your beloved 'right-wingers'. Your article here reads like a conspiracy theory itself. ("...posted... [to damage] the reputation of Indymedia...", what is that based upon?)

The only thing I hope for this site is that if it does allow for the public to contribute to it, then those people think before they write, which you obviously did not do.


Personally, 09.Dec.2002 07:11

person

Personally, I┬┤m pissed that my simple question "what IS the Indymedia censorship policy" was repeatedly censored from the website. I┬┤m an activist (not a fed, not a right wing saboteur), and I┬┤ve lost faith in IMC ever since it decided to go "Independent Media, Censored."

The right wing posts bothered me, too, but I can think of a dozen better ways to reduce them than having a small group of people decide what to remove. Sounds a lot like the mainstream media, doesn┬┤t it?

At least post the fucking censorship policy somewhere.

oops - sorry, *real anarchist* 09.Dec.2002 07:51

GRINGO STARS gringo_stars@attbi.com

I meant "..." - not you.

beware setting IMC on the slippery slope? 09.Dec.2002 08:07

me

>>>>>The IMC Network has a statement of principles and so do most local IMCs. However, the political orientation of the IMC has never been firmly established.

I thought that was the point.

>>>>>Other IMC volunteers and myself have strongly argued for a series of regional IMC meetings and conventions to resolve these questions. The problems with the IMC's vague politics is not so much what ideology it should embrace, rather what ideologies and content the IMC Network rejectsand opposes. This vagueness on politics has allowed an international network of right wingers and racists to abuse and disrupt the IMC websites, which has harmed the IMC's functionality and reputation in ways that may not be fixable without stepping on lots of toes.

If it is to be open, if IMCs are to be a sorely lacked public discourse, it MEANS talking with and addressing one's enemies, and getting used to it is part of the fun. ;-)

>>>>>If you are a regular visitor to the IMC-Global website ( http://www.indymedia.org), you may have noticed some big changes earlier this year. The "open" newswire was moved off the front page for a variety of reasons. The most diplomatic reason was that many felt that the features being created by local IMCs should be featured on the Global website. This was a solid idea and should have been implemented despite the other reasons.

Agreed. I believe that this featuring of local content on the homepage of the global IMC was benefical. It gave what was only the accidental and unintentional "center" of the IMCs a symbolic as well as material statement that it was decentered.

>>>>>>The messier reason why the open newsire was relocated was because the IMC Global volunteers were fighting a losing campaign against right wing disruption of the website. This disruption aimed to establish "free speech" space on the Indymedia websites for right wing views and racist posts--the people doing this knew that the liberal free speech attitudes of most IMC volunteers would paralyze them from implementing consistent moderation. This right wing attack also included the posting of constant anti-semitic content, right wing op-eds and articles (carefully stripped of their source infromation), conspiracy theories, and other crap designed to ruin the reputation of the Independent Media Network.

I feel that trusting people to know what is crap is better than someone telling them what "is crap" and "is worthwhile." Newswire Spam, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. How else can anyone gain any immunity or capacity to think clearly if they only want to hear their own ideas, or are unable to communicate with others of them?

>>>>>I was part of the IMC Global Newswire collective during this period and made proposals concerning a process to deal with this problems. I also painstakenly documented the attack patterns by the right wingers and showed that certain individuals were posting similar content at the same time to various IMCs. This campaign by our enemies was successful because the IMC volunteers refused to implement aggressive moderation and otherwise dragged their feet until the changes were made earlier this year.

Successful? This you understand is your interpretation of what I woulc consider the IMCs preservation and fortitude. I feel this is overstating one interpretation of what this was, as "success of the enemies." Personally, I find it "success of the IMC model."

>>>>>What did we lose when the right-wingers won? First, we lost the Indymedia network as a public space for our activists.

Lost? It is far from lost. I understand that this is your argument though I would appreciate a more literal definition of what "lost" means instead of what seems to me to be only a propaganda model of "lost."

>>>>>>If you remember what the IMC websites were like in the year after Seattle, you will remember them as places where activists came together to talk about issues. After the right wingers had their way for a year, you would commonly hear activists complain about Indymedia and say that they didn't bother with Indymedia anymore.
Secondly, the inability of the IMC network to take aggresive action against racist and anti-semitic posts further damaged the Indymedia's reputation with Jewish people and people of color. We understand that some pro-Israel extremists think that anycriticism of Israel is anti-semitic, but the IMC network became a hotbed of just plain anti-Jewish articles, opinions, and comments. Part of the problem within the IMC network is that most activists refused to stand up to the free speech totalitarians within the network,

Well, look at the true colors of the little tin-pot fascist on the left here! I am unable to sympathize with such name bashing (particularly when that is what you supposedly decry?!): calling free speech a form of totalitarinism is only a propaganda phrase.

>>>>>>. . . who argued that everything posted should stay visible to the public. I've been a free speech advocate for many years and often considered myself to be a free speech zealot, but not even I would argue that our websites should provide anyspace for right wing and racist views. The racists have their websites--we don't need to use our limited resources to promote their hideous and offensive views.

And thus you start the IMCs on the slippery slope towards the very centralization and Orwellian aspect of the "right" that you decry. . .

>>>>>The net result of this inaction is that racist and anti-semitic views became normalizedon Indymedia websites. Sure, newswire moderators would remove the occasional racist rant or picture, but lots of stuff was left online.
This normalizationof racist content showed the racists and right wingers that they could have their way with Indymedia.

same comment/response as above: I feel that trusting people to know what is crap is better than someone telling them what "is crap" and "is worthwhile." Newswire Spam, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. How else can anyone gain any immunity or capacity to think clearly if they only want to hear their own ideas, or are unable to communicate with others of them?

>>>>>>It also alienated lots of potential Indymedia supporters. Why should a Jewish activist participate in an alternative media project that tolerates hate speech against that person?

same comment/response as above: I feel that trusting people to know what is crap is better than someone telling them what "is crap" and "is worthwhile." Newswire Spam, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. How else can anyone gain any immunity or capacity to think clearly if they only want to hear their own ideas, or are unable to communicate with others of them? You are unable to act as a protector to everyone. There is a "peril of benefactors, a blessing in parasites. . " (J. Mitchell song quote) ;-)

>>>>>>I'm also convinced that the right wing posted lots of conspiracy content to ruin the repuation of Indymedia. I have no problem with the occasional conspiracy-type article posted to an IMC website, but I think there was good circumstantial evidence that the right wing was posted conspiracy content with the aim of damaging the reputation of Indymedia, not just in the eyes of the public, but in the eyes of the chief stakeholders: the activist community (and movements).
I still remain a big supporter of the Indymedia project. The Indymedia project has become a revolutionary force that has greatly empowered DIY journalists, rank-and-file activists, and average working people. This essay is not meant to criticize IMC volunteers, rather to call out to supporters of alternative media projects to speak up and demand that the IMC make some tough decisions to address these vexing and persistent problems. The Indymedia project has great potential. Let's not throw out the baby with bathwater in our efforts not to step on toes.

Agreed! So watch out for the slippery slope which you seem to be emotionally committed to choosing in your hotter moments, above.

How independant are we? 09.Dec.2002 09:02

Matty West

I am afraid that I am going to have to side with the media for all camp. It does seem like to determine a political agenda for Indymedia violates what Indymedia is all about. Corporate media has political agendas, if we fall into that beat how independant are we, how unbiased? How the hell would we determine a political agenda wihtin a an organization comprised of activists with so many different political agendas of there own. I see a whirlwind of strife and arguement within the "movement" that could pose as a more serious threat to Indymedia then some rasist, right wing articles. I don't want to see those kinds of articles just as much as you do, but the Indymedia is about free speech right?

Indymedia is not about free speech 09.Dec.2002 10:32

pdx imc contributor

Indymedia is not about free speech -

The term free speech needs examination. Free speech does not mean the right to threaten and intimidate others. It does not mean the right to use words as weapons. It does not mean the right to use words as a means to disrupt the purpose of the site.

Some posters confuse the fact that there are people that come here to disrupt. They are not here for dialog. They are not here to engage in informed discourse.

People who come here to harm and disrupt should be prevented. Period.

People who come here to report news, and engage in honest discussion should be welcome.

In otherwords, it is not about protecting an ideology, but about protecting the character and spirit of this space in which people can come dialog and present news and events to others.

Define &quot;Free Speech&quot; then 09.Dec.2002 13:45

k-dog

Sampled from the Indymedia mission statement:

"anyone may post their stories, images, video or audio to this site. don't hate the media -- become the media!"

ANYONE?

this is so typical for progressive endeavors 09.Dec.2002 13:57

CaptainPlanet

I've noticed that all the posts and discussion about censorship are taking up about as much space as the right-wing SPAM did before. This is so typical of progressive activity, all this division and bickering but little action. Due in part to COINTELPRO type interference, no doubt, but still couldn't we do better than this?

Consider that these kinds of discussion don't come up constantly on Slashdot or Kuro5hin, and try to figure out why. I would urge you to look at thier models for discussion and discuss emulating some of the features:

 http://slashdot.org/faq/

 http://www.kuro5hin.org/special/faq

If Indymedia is supposed to be a public forum, but not of any particular political orientation, why not define criteria for posts and reject posts that don't meet the criteria, where the criteria aren't political but meant to prevent the posting of articles that are just meant to bait and take up space. An example would be posts that are just name-calling in nature would not be permitted. Posts would not be rejected just because they have information supportive of a conservative viewpoint, if the post contains actual info and is not misleading. I've seen plenty of pro-progressive articles that I would prefer would have been rejected, where claims were made that sounded odd but were not supported with links or references of any kind. Right-wing media seizes on that kind of stuff to discredit Indymedia. Another good criteria would be that off-topic responses would be rejected, which wouldn't prevent anyone from posting a new idea because they could create a new thread by posting to the newswire (but not in response to something totally unrelated).

Ideas? I would love to be a part, not of the bickering but of moving forward with something that can work for people who just want to have a public forum for exchanging news and ideas and communicating events and coordinating activities, which works better when not diluted with persistent SPAM. If there are valid reasons for the way the editorial board is currently rejecting posts, then why not post those reasons in the open publishing information section?

Editors: could an e-mail address or discussion link be created so that people could submit ideas for practical solutions? When this article becomes old enough that it's not on the front page any longer, people will probably not go back to find it.

&quot;Freedom&quot; to be a Fascist?! 09.Dec.2002 15:40

android9 android9@hotmail.com

(If you wish to respond personally by e-mail, please specify Subject:agitprop, or else you will be purged with the spam)

Freedom, like anything else, is a relative term. Anarchy is not about absolute "freedom" to run amok against the collective interest. Nobody should be "free" to cut down all the trees or kill all the fish, any more than they should be "free" to rape, murder or rip off.

Anarchy is a communist (small "c") term, meaning genuine democracy: Social rule by the People, instead of by elites.

The massive diverse WTO protests and the formation of IMC were not organized by old-school capital "c" Communists, nor by Pat Buchanon types on the Right, nor by subjective mystic bourgeois ultra-individualist "neither right nor Left" 3rd Positionalist proto-fascist "libertarian" chaos freaks (although all "sides" have sought to co-opt and subvert these venues).

These groundbreaking phenomenon, N30 and IMC, were primarily, mainly, organized by anarchists, who deplore the Right, and are critical of the anti-democratic hierarchical authoritarian elitist hegemony-seeking tendencies of the old-school Left, and who also see a need for a more principled and rational process than chaos, to make revolution.

To me, the root of the dilemma presented here is democracy. Democracy is the entire basis of IMC claims to independence and "freedom" from commercial and dogmatic suppression or distortion of information. Media freaks from all over the world networked and met and discussed and debated at great length, and took democratic decisions, on how IMC should operate to guarantee maximum independence.

From this process emerged the IMC Principles of Unity, an attempt to collectivize the many cumulative years and best practices of the international media freak community.

The most important aspect of those Principles of Unity is the part that mandates diverse and democratic control of the local facility, and of the international network, by all of the people who produce and use media to disseminate accurate information.

To the extent that problems have emerged, I think they are mostly related to breakdown or subversion of the democratic process mandated by the Principles of Unity.

Some of those breakdowns have been due to technical difficulties, in terms of a material ability to ensure a comprehensive and reliable polling of all participants, to determine the actual democratic will of the collective group, locally, regionally and internationally.

But I think a bigger part of the breakdown has been a lack of determination and effort on the part of individuals and groups within the collective, at all levels, to overcome the technical difficulties, to even try to exercise the democratic potentials that do exist within the network.

The latter breakdown, of a lack of determination and effort, has many factors, not the least of which is the huge amount of work (time) required to make democracy viable.

In the face of other pressing necessities for maintaining the practical media and other work, and our very survival, as individuals and as organizations, not everyone has been able, or willing, to participate in the time consuming and sometimes messy and acrimonious democratic process sufficiently. Much of that work has been delegated, often in a substantially informal, haphazard, or defacto manner to" others", opening the door to various profound contradictions ranging all the way from error to deliberate infiltration and sabotage.

Questions of whether, and how, to moderate content, participation and process have been left to those who take the initiative to act on those things. This has been based mainly on who has the most time and other personal resources to be on the spot and in a physical position to subjectively decide who gets a password, and who's posts are "relevent", "constructive", technically "acceptable" or whatever, and who should be purged, "composted", or whatever.

When this is not done in a genuinely democratic manner, subjective prejudice, personal proclivities, and injustice will tend to prevail, automatically, which can only leave us all the more vulnerable to COINTELPRO and other covert fascist or otherwise counter-revolutionary infiltration, subversion and sabotage.

Democracy is too difficult to be a utopian panacea. But it is our only hope for resolving the contradictions we face. Revolution demands no less, anywhere.

Portland IMC recently saw a contrived coup by the editorial committee, after many months of deliberate anti-democratic rhetoric, sabotage and agitation against the General Collective, in order to subsume all power over the site to a hand-picked clique of distinctly primitivist chaoticist tendency. They do a lot of "good work", but they also inject whack subjective bullshit into the practice, which has led to a substantial deterioration of the quality of the site.

They used a vicious campaign of adhominem attack, slander and dirty tricks to drive away or purge anyone who criticized their practices or called for a process of more democratic resolution of conflicts. Their rhetoric and actions to this effect are clearly documented in the discussion list archives, for anyone to see.

Unfortunately, those archives are tedious to wade through. They are full of spam, extremely long coded messages, and diversionary trivia, as well as more mundane day to day transactions. Neither local or global activists have had the time or the determination to do a comprehensive review, in terms of being able to seek a clear democratic resolution of these issues. People have been reduced to either accepting the fait accompli, or just leaving the venue.

The same unprincipled individuals on the editorial committee deliberately invited the fairly recent spate of reactionary posts to the site, by going on a nationally syndicated rightwing "Libertarian" radio talk show, with an "open publishing" line that "IMC could just as easily become a rightwing site, depending on who posts". Go figure... since then, such traffic has flooded this site and others.

By prominently featuring material like the Female Chauvinist calls for Matriarchy, and recruiting a Disclosure Project cadre for the specific and explicit purpose of regularly featuring UFO, chemtrail and other conspiracy "theory" speculations, they have opportunistically pandered to a "populist" sensationalism on the site, despite a preponderance of objections from readers and other IMC participants.

Whether one agrees with my analysis, my position on these specific issues cited, or the fact that the controlling clique "does a lot of good work" otherwise, the fact remains that the "decisions" have been made undemocratically, and thus in blatant violation of fundamental IMC principles, adamant denials of the ruling clique notwithstanding.

It's one thing if the collective actually decides democratically to do something you don't personally agree with. Then you can either decide that it's not bad enough to withdraw over, or you can decide that you simply cannot, or will not participate, on principle.

But when such decisions are made in a profoundly undemocratic manner, and no recourse is allowed, a whole other thing has happened, and its not IMC. Rectification obviously will not be found in addressing or changing this or that aspect of the practice merely to comply with one person or another's preferences or desire.

It is my opinion that a real collective would never have approved of any of the actions cited above. But in lieu of any genuinely democratic process, we'll never know.

Meanwhile, I remain purged from the organization, less for disagreeing on these points of practice than for persistently demanding compliance with IMC principles, and seeking democratic resolution of the issues, which was, admittedly, obviously a huge "disruption" of edcoms subjective elitist bliss.

The fact that IMC is so urgently and desperately needed, and that the site is thus getting a lot of hits and "doing a lot of good work" is no proof to the contrary. I do not buy the line that the present controlling clique is justified and exonerated on all counts by these facts, that this proves I was "disruptive", or that everyone likes pdx IMC just fine, the way it is.

Anyone could operate the machine that is IMC, and the huge need for its existence guarantees that even an unprincipled clique of hard working anti-democratic traitors can be "successful" in pimping the concept.

Beyond my own humiliation and substantial personal political and practical organizational injury at being purged from Portland IMC, there is the larger question of what we want IMC to be, and what it will become, if we are not willing and able to fight for the fundamental Principles of Unity.

What has happened at Portland IMC this Summer, and a very similar situation at the Eugene "imc", who's site has been defunct since July, and was never fully functional, threatens the legitimacy and viability of the entire network, eventually. I know a lot less about what has happened in Russia, France, and other sites that may have been taken over or manipulated by exclusive anti-democratic cliques. But there have definitely been problems, and they do indeed seem to be proliferating, both in the US and abroad.

The situ in Portland can only serve to encourage unprincipled elements elsewhere. While I applaud Chuck0, who does a lot of good work online with his infoshop site, for bringing up these issues, I have to wonder what he really thinks the problem is, and what he poses as the solution.

Is his post just an attempt to pre-empt and co-opt the motion now stirring within IMC, to reassert the Principles of Unity, to begin tightening up the new-imc process, and to begin subjecting extant IMC entities to re-certification? Chuck0 has previously been pretty vocal in dismissing my critique of Eugene "imc", and of my analysis of the situ in Portland as well. It seems to me he has tended to support the chaos freaks in their dismissal of democratic process, "on principle". Does he see the new impetus for reasserting democratic control of IMC as an ominous threat, or what?

I think the issue of democracy is the root issue here, and I expect to see a whole spate of muddleheaded "explanations" about why the oppression of minorities by majorities must be prevented, by avoiding democracy at any costs, in the name of "diversity", "freedom" and "creativity". But in my opinion, the problems of minority elite exploitation and oppression against the majority are much greater.

Indeed, virtually every instance I can think of where the "majority" imposes unjust prejudicial sanctions against oppressed minorities, those circumstances have in fact always been contrived by elitist manipulation of chauvinist cultural and social "norms" and policy. This has clearly always been the case, in Germany's "election" of Hitler, or the US "election" of Bush, or, say, the contrived "democratic choices" of the "free market" under capitalism.

Such socio-economic, political and cultural paradigms are always imposed by elites, by various means, against the interests and genuine desires of the common people, who in fact universally tend to just want to live in justice and peace with their neighbors.

Genuine democracy, the only absolute I tend to subscribe to, is humanity's only hope, the truly revolutionary concept, for justice and peace, to save the planet.

The fact that it has never been successfully manifested to any substantial and permanent degree does not mean democracy is impossible or undesirable. That's what makes it truly revolutionary, and evolutionary!

ALL POWER TO THE PEOPLE! DEATH TO FACISM, AND ALL ELITISM!

Chuck Has a Point 09.Dec.2002 17:17

BFAB

Now this may not be disturbing to Portlanders, but speaking as someone from the other coast, the creep of racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-Semitic, and other overtly fascist material has become a pretty big problem in the New York IMC.

Perhaps because we're the largest metropolitan region with an IMC, IMC-NYC has continued to have the problem wherein a blitz of posts of pure junk - racist cartoons of sambos, materials calling gay men AIDS spreaders, etc. - drives almost every other story off the newswire. Now, if I were a person logging in for the first time, I'd swear that I'd be on a right wing Nazi website, and I'd never log in again. Which also means I'd never post, much less leave my contact info just so some guy who read too many Thor comics can get my name and address. So much for freedom of the press. I guess Indymedia's only for whites who can tolerate such bullshit in order to get the odd ARA posting.

I mean, I'm sure that in theory one could say that all allowing some racist to post onto newswires does is make the case for decent persons to post even more. But in fact, all it does is provide racists the privilege of being able to know they can start conflicts.

As to other cases - idiots who post stories about the lizard men, the Flat Earth Society, creationist propaganda, assholes who post under stolen identities, etc. - where something posted is just plain wrong or unsubstantiated, then it doesn't need to be repeated. I'd suggest that perhaps a prerequisite to the forming of an editorial collective that there be someone whose sole purpose is to make sure we're not getting urban legends that a quick browse to snopes.com can debunk.

By the way, just for the record, I've never really agreed with Chuck's grandstanding conduct or the seemingly arbitrary way that he's become an emblem of any movement. I do, however, share his sentiment that 1999 is 3 years ago and that certain things that worked at that time have become anarchronisms.

Sad Decline 09.Dec.2002 17:56

=Eric Bagai

There is a very simple structural modification that would fix this problem: Moderate without deletion.

That is, divide the main viewing section and the commentary/follow-up sections of IM into two sections that can be toggled back and forth by the reader as needed.

---SECTION ONE contains all the unmoderated posts by the un-named moderator du jour.

---SECTION TWO contains all the moderated posts.

Nothing gets censored or left out because nothing gets deleted. It's all still there, if one wants to read it. But no one has to wade through the obvious trash if they don't want to. The basic criteria is reasonableness and being on-point.

CRITERIA FOR MODERATION
(note the multiple meanings OF 'moderation', please)

--Known or self-evident disruptive sources.

--Conspiracy details, minutia, defense, and rants.

--Racist and racist-accusation posts.

--Rants without specific recommendations or constructive criticism. (Rant = criticism with excessive or extreme characterization of the position or person being criticized.)

--General bad-mouthing without any other purpose, unless it's funny or extremely telling.

--Objections to moderation, unless systemic recommendations or constructive criticism is offered (e.g. changed, deleted, or new moderation criteria).

--Literary, religious, spiritural or related works, regardless of perceived merit: this is what Usenet and web sites are for.

--

Moderators should not be expected to defend their decisions, but a private weekly review by all moderators could bring up issues as needed. Any given IM site should be able to get by with a team of a half-dozen moderators who would probably put in very little more IM time than they do now.

=Eric

Reply 09.Dec.2002 20:31

deva

Sampled from the Indymedia mission statement:

"anyone may post their stories, images, video or audio to this site. don't hate the media -- become the media!"

ANYONE?




yes, anyone can post stories, images etc - stories that are meant to inform or discuss

spam, hatefilled crap, etc are not stories. . .attempts to disrupt the site are not communication or dialog, they are an attempt at domination and have no place in a healthy environment

nothing is perfect - there is no such thing as perfect free speech and never has been - every person censors their own thoughts - every person censors what they hear and listen to - every facet and arena of life has filters and boundaries. people may draw their lines in different places, but everyone draws lines

the amount of time people spend on the endless discussion about some posts being hidden is alarming - is it perfect? no, did it effectively deal with what was an escalating situation? fairly well, and that is good enough - there is so much work that needs doing right now in the real world and spending time trying to create the perfect 'free speech' forum in this dehumanized virtual space is itself a symptom of the deep disconnect from life and community in this society.

I know what got Chuck0's underwear in a bunch 09.Dec.2002 22:17

Mark Seely mseely@wt.net

I know what got Chuck0's underwear in a bundle yesterday. It was an article I published to Indymedia about the occurrence of the number 666 in our society, including in the World Trade Center destruction.

Right after I published, however, there were about a half dozen pro Palestinian pieces published in a row. Which makes me think that the CIA stays up nights posting stuff to Indymedia in order to drown out other people's articles.

So, I am republishing that piece of mine below.

==================================

Numbers: A compendium of the occurrences of certain numbers in our society and in history.

 http://www.geocities.com/markamooky/numbers.html


666
-----

1999 A.D., relative to the year 1 A.D.
The year 1999 equals the year 1 A.D. plus 666 plus 666 plus 666 years.


The American flag, and the orbit of the moon
The numbers of the flag, 13 stripes and 50 stars, are close to the numbers of the correlation of the cycles of the earth and the moon with the number 666: there are 13.37 moon orbits in a year, and 49.82 years in 666 moon orbits.


Apollo 11: date of moon landing, in relation to the 1111 moon orbit period centered between 1-1-1918 and 12-31-2001
Date is 18,666 days after the beginning of the 1111 moon orbit period centered between 1-1-1918 and 12-31-2001 (beginning date of period is 6-12-1918). The date given for the moon landing of Apollo 11, said to be the first ship in which man has landed on the moon, is July 20, 1969.


Al Gore's "political comeback": date of
Al Gore held a press conference announcing his "political comeback" on 2-2-2002, which is 666 moon phases since his birth on 3-31-1948, and is also 19,666 days since his birth. (See entry for "Al Gore's 'political comeback': date of" under 222.)


bar codes (UPC)
Each full sized UPC bar code, which appears on most retail products, has a "6" coded stripe at the beginning, a "6" coded stripe in the middle, and a "6" coded stripe at the end.


Christian Bible: the number of the beast
Number is 666. The King James version of the Bible says, in the book "Revelation" (or "Apocalypse") chapter 13: "Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six," that is, 666.


Christian cross
The shorter piece of the Christian cross is about 2/3 (or 0.6666...) as long as the longer piece, and it is positioned about 2/3 (or 0.6666...) of the way along the longer piece.


Jesus of Nazareth, date of birth, in relation to the 6000 year period beginning 6000 years before the year 2001
Date of birth (circa 1 A.D.) is 2/3 (or 0.6666...) of the way through the 6000 year period described. The beginning of this period (4000 B.C.) is the approximate date given for "Adam," at least within 240 years.


July 1, noon, and July 1, 11:06 PM
July 1, noon, is 666 minutes short of being 6.66 moon orbits into the year. That is, July 1, 11:06 PM, which is 666 minutes past noon, is 6.66 moon orbits into the year. (See entry for "The moon's orbit," below, for the same fact stated a different way.)


London: year of the "Great fire" of 1666
Year ends in 666. The "Great fire of London" of 1666 leveled most of the city. This was the second "Great fire of London," with the first "Great fire" having occurred in the year 1212.


The moon's orbit
The period of 6.66 moon orbits is greater than a whole number of half days by 666 minutes. Stated another way, the period of 6.66 moon orbits is greater than a whole number of days by 23:06 hours, which is 666 minutes past noon. (See entry for "July 1, noon," above, for the same fact stated a different way.)


The moon's orbit: 111 moon orbits
The period of 111 moon orbits is less than a whole number of days by 7:06 hours, or 6 hours and 66 minutes (6:66).


The moon's orbit: 111 plus "pi" moon orbits
The period of 111 plus "pi" moon orbits is less than a whole number of days by 666 minutes.


The moon's orbit: 50 years
The period of 50 years is equal to 668.4 moon orbits, which can also be expressed as 666 moon orbits and 66 days, minus 2:48 hours.


The moon's orbit: 911 days
The period of 911 days is equal to 33.333 moon orbits and 6.666 hours.


The moon's orbit: one "sidereal" year
The period of one "sidereal" year (an earth year with respect to the stars) is equal to 13 moon orbits, 10 days, and 1:48 hours, and this time of day is less than a whole day by 666 plus 666 minutes.


The moon's phases: 666 moon phases
The period of 666 moon phases is equal to 19,667.4 days, which can also be expressed as 19,666 days plus 33 hours.


New York City area code, as related to the number "pi"
A main New York City area code is 212, and 212 times "pi" equals 666.


Oklahoma City bombing, and the execution of Timothy McVeigh: time between
The time between the Oklahoma City bombing on 4-19-1995, at 9:02 EST, and the execution of Timothy McVeigh on 6-11-2001, at 7:14 EST, is 2244 days, plus 666 plus 666 minutes, event to event.


Roman numerals: sum of
The sum of all classical Roman numerals, I, V, X, L, C, D (1, 5, 10, 50, 100, 500) is 666. (The numeral M, for 1000, was a later addition.)


"2001: A Space Odyssey," director Stanley Kubrick: date of death
Date is 666 days before the year 2001. Stanley Kubrick was reported to have died on 3-7-1999 or 3-8-1999. Also, the year 1999 equals the year 1 A.D. plus 666 plus 666 plus 666 years.


"2001: A Space Odyssey": camera shots, number of
The number of camera shots (or edits) in the film, from "The Dawn of Man" to "The End," is 666.


"2001: A Space Odyssey": hypothetical time of activation of the computer "HAL"
The novel gives the date of activation of the computer "HAL" as January 12, 1997, and the movie gives the date as January 12, 1992. No time of day is given. The time 7:41 AM, on January 12, is exactly 6 moon orbits, 6 days, and 6 hours before July 1, noon, which is 666 minutes short of being 6.66 moon orbits into the year (which is July 1, 11:06 PM).


"2001: A Space Odyssey": timing of "The Dawn of Man" and the first "monolith"
The sum of the time index when "The Dawn of Man" starts, at 1:41 minutes, or 101 seconds, plus the time index when the first "monolith" is shown, at 9:25 minutes, or 565 seconds, equals 666 seconds. (Times are measured from the start of the MGM lion logo.)


"2001: A Space Odyssey": running time, as related to the orbit of the moon
The running time of the film in seconds, from the beginning of the "Overture" to the end of the "Exit Music" (total exhibition time), is equal to the number of moon orbits contained in 666 years (8903). The running time of the film in seconds, from the beginning of the MGM lion logo to the fade-out of the story, is equal to the number of moon phases contained in 666 years (8237). Everything before and after the movie proper, that is, the "Overture," end credits, and "Exit Music" times, adds up to 666 seconds (and this mathematical property is a corollary of the previous two facts).


Washington monument: height
Height is 6665 inches. Monument in Washington, D.C., built between 1848 and 1884, in honor of George Washington, the first President of the United States of America.


Water, boiling point, as related to the number "pi"
The boiling point of water, 212 degrees Fahrenheit, times "pi" equals 666. ("Pi," a mathematical constant, equals 3.14159265....)


World Trade Center bombing in 1993: time to U.S. Supreme court decision for George W. Bush on 12-12-2000
The time between the first World Trade Center bombing on 2-26-1993, at noon, and the effective appointment of George W. Bush as U.S. President by the U.S. Supreme Court on 12-12-2000, at 10:00 PM, is 101 plus "pi" moon orbits, plus 666 plus 911 minutes, event to event; or 101 plus "pi" moon orbits, plus 666 plus 311 minutes, midnight to midnight. (See entries for "World Trade Center bombing in 1993," under 52 and 111.)


World Trade Center bombing in 1993: time to World Trade Center destruction on 9-11-2001
The time between the first World Trade Center bombing on 2-26-1993, at noon, and the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9-11-2001, average time 11:06 AM (666 minutes into the day), is 111 plus "pi" moon orbits, plus 611 minutes, event to event; or 111 plus "pi" moon orbits, plus 666 minutes, midnight to midnight. (See entries for "World Trade Center bombing in 1993," under 52 and 101.)


World Trade Center destruction on 9-11-2001: average time of day of five events
Average time is 666 minutes on the day. The average time of the two airplane crashes and the three building collapses is 11:06 AM, which is 666 minutes past midnight. (Times are taken as 8:45, 9:03, 9:50, 10:29, and 5:25 PM, as reported in the Washington Post newspaper.)


World Trade Center destruction on 9-11-2001: times of day of five events, as related to the numbers 711 and "pi"
The sum of the hours and minutes of the times of the two airplane crashes and the three building collapses, after adding 7:11 hours to each time, military time, is 212 (or 101 plus 111), and 212 times "pi" is 666. (Times are taken as 8:45, 9:03, 9:50, 10:29, and 5:25 PM, as reported in the Washington Post newspaper.)


World Trade Center destruction on 9-11-2001, and Waco, Texas, "Branch Davidian" fire on 4-19-1993: midpoint of events
The midpoint between the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9-11-2001, average time 11:06 AM, and the fire at the "Branch Davidian" compound in Waco, Texas, on 4-19-1993, at noon, is about 12 AM July 1, 1997. The time of the Waco fire was noon, and the average time of the five events of the World Trade Center destruction was 11:06 AM (666 minutes into the day), and noon plus 11:06 hours on July 1 is 23:06 hours, which is 6.66 moon orbits into the year.


"X-Files"/"The Lone Gunmen": gematria of characters "Frohike, Langly, Byers," as related to the number "pi"
Gematria is 212, and 212 times "pi" equals 666. Continuing characters of the TV show "X-Files." Main characters of the TV show "The Lone Gunmen," the premiere episode of which showed a "hijacked" passenger jet being flown into the World Trade Center towers. (This premiere episode aired 7 moon orbits to the day before 9-11-2001, on 3-4-2001. Similarly, the premiere episode of the "X-Files" aired 107 moon orbits to the day before 9-11-2001, on 9-10-1993.)


Thank you Eric 10.Dec.2002 04:10

CaptainPlanet

THANKS MUCH ERIC for the suggestions on moderation and enhancing the functionality without censoring. Could we please, please consider this? Possibly there could be a function for setting to browse without moderation, but the default would be to moderate the crap to a location out of sight so that you have to go to get it, leaving the substaintial content up front for everyone to see on the home page.

The above lengthy post (on 666 and numerology) would have been moderated out due to being off-topic. Mark, you might have reposted on the newswire rather than stick that in this story on the site's functionality, which your post has nothing at all to do with -- except for the initial comment about the Palestinian issue SPAM, which need not have been followed by that whole article.

I disagree 10.Dec.2002 17:49

Mark Seely

Yes that whole article did need to be attached, because someone asked what set "Chuck0" off. And I noted that I posted my article the day before "Chuck0" got "upset."

to anderoid9 (a clarification) 10.Dec.2002 22:29

Jungle jim

Not to change the subject, but I am compelled to post my disagreement with you on one of your points.

you said:

"By prominently featuring material like the Female Chauvinist calls for Matriarchy, and recruiting a Disclosure Project cadre for the specific and explicit purpose of regularly featuring UFO, chemtrail and other conspiracy "theory" speculations, they have opportunistically pandered to a "populist" sensationalism on the site, despite a preponderance of objections from readers and other IMC participants. "

sorry, but there have been no UFO stories made into features therefore no opportunistic pandering (how about opportunistic debunking under the false pretense of "skepticism, hmm?".

Furthermore there have been no conspiracy theory speculations regarding the UFO issue that I have seen or posted. There HAVE been posts of the MOD FOIA release PROVING that there was a cover up of this historical sighting AND an FOIA document regarding crashed discs and non-human bodies FROM THE USA FOIA WEBSITE!. so much for "theories" and speculations on that one!
 http://reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=scienceNews&storyID=1841395


Regarding this particular subject you are naive. Not exceptionally naive but naive in a sort of mediocre kind of way.

In regards to "opportunistic pandering to populist sensationalism" -despite a "preponderance" of objections: you are both excessively verbose and just plain wrong.



"Behind the scenes, high-ranking Air Force officers are soberly concerned about UFOs. But through official secrecy and RIDICULE, many citizens are led to believe the unknown flying objects are nonsense."
-Former CIA Director, Roscoe Hillenkoetter, public statement, 1960. (my emphasis)


(no need to respond to this.)

we can all now carry on with the general subject at hand.

Basic Moderation Needs 11.Dec.2002 02:34

Curt

On a decentralized network soliciting content from a wide variety of sources, no one person will win an argument on what sort of content is appropriate for the whole. Even a subgroup won't - at best they'll come up with a homogenized approximation of what content collection is okay for everyone, which basically ends up with the same watered-down media that indymedia doesn't want.

What indymedia needs to admit is that its whole effort is all about the writer/submitter, not the reader. It's designed to help the authors feel good about themselves, not for the readers to easily find relevant content.

Indymedia is an open collection of content. They believe, "No filtering." But what they have to admit is that every READER is filtering - "that's good, oh, that one is opinion disguised as fact, this guy can't even spell, she's a racist, he's an idiot, oh here's a good one". Fair enough, but indymedia also makes the reader's filtering very DIFFICULT and FRUSTRATING.

So what are indymedia's choices? They can moderate content. They can introduce editorial control (perhaps even through a loosely knit decentralized trust metric model). But both of those involve people other than the public deciding what the public wants to see. That goes against what indymedia originally said they were about. But there's still another choice - make it easier for the reader to filter the news.

Indymedia should be a NEWSFEED SERVICE, not a website. The website is the least efficient, most frustrating representation of the content, because there are almost no customization controls available to the reader.

However, if indymedia enabled all their IMCs to publish their newsfeeds via RSS - split among many many categories (each article could belong to multiple categories), then readers could CHOOSE which newsfeeds to read and subscribe to. There are already a variety of RSS Newsreaders out there. If the reader wants to be exposed to ALL published articles, then they can subscribe to those newsfeeds. But they might only choose to subscribe to a portion of them. And, the articles that people find especially newsworthy would have a greater likelihood of being republished into other second-party newsfeeds that others might be more interested in subscribing to.

In other words, let the readers decide what's good news and what isn't, and let other readers decide for themselves if they want to see the raw source or a source that another (trusted source) has already prefiltered for them. That way the idiotic racist stuff would die off by itself.

The technologists might not know it, but there is a lot of work being done to enable this sort of thing - all in the realm of RSS Aggregation. And as for what indymedia needs to do, all they need to do is publish their newsfeeds in RSS format, in one of the later RSS versions that allows the images and article content to be published as well.

Curt



ChuckO, Hell No! 11.Dec.2002 09:30

Fre Finker

I used to have a great deal of respect for ChuckO and the work he has done for the "virtual revolution". However, to begin to join with the usual leftoids clamouring to censor anything that does not fit with their views is terrible. It merely portrays the depth of betrayal that has become common place among previous "radicals". Any arguement that does not follow their tired bullshit is "right-wing" but alas it has always been so...

When the has-been "radicals" have dug themselves a nice niche they will defend their IDEOLOGY/RELIGION against all heretics...

People can say what they want if you believe your arguement isn't strong enough to dismiss theirs thats your problem...

Everyody hates somebody...the white middle class hate the white working class, for example,...

Wise up Chuck, you've been working too much with Stalinists like the Barracuda Collective...

Don't tell me things I don't want to hear!!! 11.Dec.2002 17:44

Agent Orange

--Known or self-evident disruptive sources.

--Conspiracy details, minutia, defense, and rants.

--Racist and racist-accusation posts.

--Rants without specific recommendations or constructive criticism. (Rant = criticism with excessive or extreme characterization of the position or person being criticized.)

--General bad-mouthing without any other purpose, unless it's funny or extremely telling.

--Objections to moderation, unless systemic recommendations or constructive criticism is offered (e.g. changed, deleted, or new moderation criteria).

--Literary, religious, spiritural or related works, regardless of perceived merit: this is what Usenet and web sites are for.

So Eric, is this the "I don't want to see it, so moderate it" catagory? I say this because I am not sure how these subjects are related and why they should be "moderated".

Debunkers and true skeptics of covert phenomenon are always demanding credible evidence for conspiracies--which many on this site try to provide. Why again, should details of conspiracies be sectioned off? I am sure you want to know the details of the energy companies conpiracy to jack up prices in the "energy crisis"...or was that not the kind on conspiracy you were referring to...because you just might believe the above mentioned conspiracy and would consider it newsworthy.

I don't know for sure what you think, though...it's just speculation :)

'666' looks to be a near 2000 year hoax 11.Dec.2002 20:34

Mark Seely mseely@wt.net

==========================================

*** EARTH EXCLUSIVE

*** THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST OF 'REVELATION' LOOKS LIKE A HOAX

*** '666' AND 1800 YEARS OF CHURCH HISTORY MAY BE 'DEEP SIXED'

==========================================

December 11, 2002

TEXAS FREE PRESS
Mark Seely

So anyway, I have finally discovered what I should have discovered months ago.

And that is that our man made systems of time (hours, minutes, seconds, etc.) are based on the cycles of the planets. Duh, you say. Well, the relevant matter is not whether, but how our systems of time are based on the cycles of the planets. How is as follows.

The time that it takes for the moon to orbit the earth 4.44 times is greater than a whole number of 12-hour periods by 444 minutes. Likewise, the time that it takes for the moon to orbit the earth 6.66 times is greater than a whole number of 12-hour periods by 666 minutes.

That is it in a nutshell.

Wait. There is an added bonus. The time that it takes for the moon to orbit the earth 711 times is less than a whole number of 12-hour periods by 7:11 hours. And here is another added bonus. The time that it takes for the moon to orbit the earth 110 times is greater than a whole number of 12-hour periods by 9:11 hours. (Need I remind the reader that the 110 story World Trade Center was destroyed on 9-11?)

Now we can understand why "our" culture refers to numbers like 711, 911, and 666 so much. This is a fairly simple matter, not open to speculation. It is plain.

The number of the beast of the book of "Revelation" looks like a hoax, or some kind of purposeful deception.

For further reading on this matter, I refer readers to my website. I suggest scrolling directly to the section on the number '666.'

 http://www.geocities.com/markamooky/numbers.html#666

-----

Stafford, Texas

September 11 and &quot;The Lone Gunmen&quot; 12.Dec.2002 20:00

Mark Seely mseely@wt.net

The Timing of September 11, 2001, and the TV show "The Lone Gunmen"

Mark Seely
November 24 and December 12, 2002


Could it be a "coincidence" that all of the following items about September 11, 2001, and the TV show "The Lone Gunmen," are true?

The TV premiere of "The Lone Gunmen," on March 4, 2001, was exactly 7 moon orbits before September 11, 2001.

Seven moon orbits into the calendar year is July 11, or "7-11."

The date "September 11" can be read as "7-11" since "September" means "seventh month," as "sept" means seven.

The TV premiere of "The Lone Gunmen" showed a hijacked passenger jet being flown into the World Trade Center towers, which is exactly what happened on September 11, 2001.

The times of the five events of the World Trade Center destruction--the two airplane strikes and the three building collapses--as given by the Washington Post, among other sources, possess the numerical property that when 7:11 hours is added to each time in military time, and then the hours and minutes of the resulting five times are added together, the sum is 212. (Times are 8:45, 9:03, 9:50, 10:29, and 5:25 PM. Adding 7:11 hours to each gives 15:56, 16:14, 17:01, 17:40, and 00:36. Adding 15 + 56 + 16 + 14 + 17 + 1 + 17 + 40 + 0 + 36 gives 212.)

The names of the three main characters of the TV show "The Lone Gunmen," which are "Frohike," "Langly," and "Byers," when taken together have an alphabetical sum (or "gematria") of 212. (The alphabetical sum of a word is gotten by making "A" equal 1, "B" equal 2, "C" equal 3, and so on, and then summing the letters of the word together.)

One might ask, why talk about the orbit of the moon and the number 711? Here is a clue: the period of 711 moon orbits is less than a whole number of days by 7:11 hours.

As an "added bonus," the TV show that "The Lone Gunmen" spun off from, the "X-Files," premiered exactly 107 moon orbits before September 11, 2001, on September 10, 1993. And the alphabetical sum (or "gematria") of the name "George Bush" is 107.

Coincidence? I don't think so.

Here is another issue:

Why, with all of the talk about numbers being related to the events of September 11, 2001, am I, Mark Steven Seely of Stafford, "Texas," (a.k.a. "Busta Moon"), apparently the only one on the whole earth who is talking publicly about the period of the moon's orbit being related to these matters?

No one else talks about the period of the moon's orbit, and never has, as far as I can tell. I can find no one else on the internet talking about it. It is only me.

I must caution you, audience, that if you do realize the truth, as I have spoken and written it to you, you may be doing yourself harm if you do not then respond in your life with a care for this truth. You see, you have just now, as with the reading or hearing of any or all of my revelations, put yourself in a position fraught with different possibilities, as you have now lost some more of your innocence of the truth.

I do believe that this process that we are in now is a process of the so-called, and possibly self-styled, "Satan" trying to force a response from those whom it has enticed into its system of external controls, in other words, the United States, the European Union, NATO, the United Nations, etc. However, this, if true, is irrelevant, as the process of seeking the Most High is the only relevant process to conscious people.

The meaning of the events of September 11 is not that these events cause people or their society to become more good. These events do not cause people or society to become more good. These events only provide information by which people may become wiser. Wisdom does not imply any degree of goodness. The meaning of the events of September 11, as I see it, is that these events are seen by people as an example of something that is not good. That is, these events are indicators that the people who caused these events, including the U.S. government and the media and the military, are not seekers of the Most High.

This fact, as I see it, is what these events have demonstrated to people. If we did not know before what these people in the government and the media and the military were about, whether because of ignorance or willful self delusion, we know what they are about now. How people deal with this information, this wisdom, is an individual choice. It is a choice that can be influenced unhealthily by the surrounding society, insofar as one practices in one's own mind to be a non-seeker of the Most High, and it is also a choice that can be influenced healthily by the surrounding society, insofar as one practices in one's own mind to be a seeker of the Most High. This is not a conundrum, but merely a description of consciousness and life and the cosmos, as I see it.

Let us be healthy and good.

I intend this message in the spirit of seeking the Most High, the maker of all, including my consciousness.

(Units used: a moon orbit, "sidereal," with respect to the stars, is 27.32166053 days.)


For further reading on this subject:

The 1968 Movie "2001: A Space Odyssey" May Have Been a Prediction about the Events of September 11, 2001, And It May Have Cost the Movie Director, Stanley Kubrick, His Life
 http://www.geocities.com/markamooky/2001_and_911.html


Why do 110 and 911 turn up together so much? 15.Dec.2002 12:28

Mark Seely

"Seventy-six trombones caught the morning sun, with a hundred and ten cornets right behind" has an alphabetic sum of 911.

The 110-story World Trade Center was destroyed on 9-11.

The period of 110 moon orbits is greater than a whole number of days by 9:11 hours.

"Nine-one-one" has an alphabetic sum of 110.

Yes, this is a "coincidence." It is a coincidence that "Satan" worshippers planned all of these things this way. And Bush, Gore, Hillary, and Kennedy don't seem to want to say a word about it.

This evidence strongly suggests that our language and systems of time, not to mention major historical events like 9-11, were designed by observers of the motions of the planets.

www.geocities.com/markamooky/110_and_911.html