Scientists as Modern Colonialists:
The Ancient One and Jack Metcalf
originally written for Left Hook
A recent ruling on the “Kennewick man” bones has deep implications as yet another in a long line of scientific attacks on indigenous sovereignty. The recent court decision that the local Indians do not control the bones despite the non-ambiguous nature of laws passed on agreements between the nation and the American state is one more salt-grinding demonstration that sovereignty of First Nations is not something that a North American government is bound to respect. Not only is the ruling a legal blast to the existing treaties and legislation, it is proof that the “above politics” nature of “honest scientific inquiry” is a total hoax. Before we know it, this will allow a tidal wave of racist reaction from first-to-fifth generation settlers about First Nations not really being “first”.
Notes on Human Rights Watch
published in the Variant, Winter, 2004
The organization Human Rights Watch (HRW), much like counterpart Amnesty International (AI), is cited often by individuals and organizations of all political creeds and persuasions. Whether it is far-right opponents of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez or leftist solidarity activists working on helping the beleaguered Palestinian people, it seems a citation from HRW is so respected that it takes on the air of non-ideological and non-partisan, making it so that they stand above the fray of politics. But is this really the case? Well, one of the main issues that can be brought up is simply how the organization pigeon-holes these matters. To deal with this point, I found simply one article on the HRW main webpage (hrw.org) and dissected from there.
The article in question is available at:
And right from the start, it is too deeply woven with imperialist ideology to simply take apart when a line appears that is in favour of Western imperial interests. The White Man’s burden approach to the “Human Rights” and International law implications implied therein are simply astounding. It is not so much what is said but rather how things are framed. The ideology of HRW, much like the major bourgeois media, as has often been said, is like the pane of glass you don’t see, but which really determines the appearance of what you are looking at.
So this is my rant on Palestine
(I wrote this originally as a semi-public email, after a first visit through Israel, Palestine and Jordan. I have to call this “creative venting.” It was a therapeutic write up.)
May 6, 2011
I promised myself I wouldn’t do this. I knew I would finally be able to go to Palestine and see things for myself, but the last thing I wanted to do was write some gooey, sappy stuff about what I saw, how life was so bad, and how shocked I am. Besides all of that, I had been friends with both Palestinians and many internationals who had spent time here for many years and knew a lot of all of this already anyhow, right? Besides, I never went to Palestine for a reason: I didn’t have a reason. That was my reason for not going; the stories of some privileged urban white dude from a privileged country causing havoc and basically forcing the local people out of the goodness of their hearts to babysit someone who was there supposedly also out of the goodness of their hearts was “not on” as far as I was concerned. So I had no reason to be here, and would have likely been a burden and did not come.
Resistance is Warranted
by Macdonald Stainsby
Originally written for
November 22, 2004
The warrants are being drawn up, and the people are all a buzz. The seats on the buses are being reserved to converge on Ottawa, Ontario in the northeastern half of Turtle Island to meet American President George W Bush. People whose passport reads as Canadian — every bit as affected by the recent election in the United States but like the rest of the planet were denied a vote — have other means and methods to express themselves dancing in their heads now. It has been almost exactly seven years since the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation arrived in Vancouver, in what later came to be known as “Spraypec”. Though you could be forgiven for thinking that the only thing that happened was the pepper-spraying of a bunch of kids, in actuality General Suharto (then leader of Indonesia) was a participant in the days of discussions, and activists who were opposed to his record in Indonesia and East Timor (circa: 1,000,000 killed) drew up a warrant and attempted to arrest him. This was problematic on several levels. One: Bill Clinton, the president of the US, was in attendance after sending troops into Bosnia; Chinese President Jiang Zemin was in attendance, and the list goes on. Further, beyond domestic law and the “theory” of international law, there was little in the way of a case to arrest the General.
What's Your Occupation?
My Column from "the Other Press" in September, 2003.
Were you pissed off that the war happened, despite the largest movement for any cause in history? Well, hold on, something even better is taking place. The war machine is losing the ability to make war. Oh, it's not obvious yet. It won't be for a while, at least not to the generals and the oil administration. Well, actually, it's becoming obvious to some of the generals. These men have started demanding that the Secretary of Defense (Donald Rumsfeld) send more troops. What's the problem with this? They don't got 'em.