The Privacy Paradox | Google’s A.I. gets greedy | DuckDuckGo

What you need to know to take back your digital identity – and maybe even your soul.

READ and LISTEN: Introducing: The Privacy Paradox – Note to Self – WNYC

TECH ETHICS & DATA SURVIVALISM

If you can’t stop thinking about privacy, well, neither can we. It’s doing wonders for our insomnia. Kidding! Manoush sat down to talk privacy, algorithms, and accountability with Julia Angwin and Anil Dash recently, and we made that live chat into a bonus episode. Julia talked about her “information prepper” lifestyle and what it means to be a data survivalist. Anil talked about why spreading your information as widely as possible is the best defense—heterogeneity as privacy. And we tackle the perennial question: should we all get off Gmail?

fa9c542e-ae6e-4dee-b566-b13af0cd1a1cAlso, weirdly, there were a lot of jokes. LISTEN

By LT

Hi everyone!  I’ve taught social media in adult workshops the past few years and I kinda expected social media like Facebook would be a HUGE privacy concern. (I’d thought Facebook was about friends, more contacts, easy to remember their birthdays… THEN marketing, ads and greed took it over.)

There were wise people at the Greenfield College library who had given me handouts on data mining for my classes. I told my students they didn’t have to sign up for anything. I was teaching them the basics about Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Search Engines, How To websites like WikiHow, YouTube, Google+ and others.

In February, I signed up for this week-long brilliant course THE PRIVACY PARADOX. You should listen, too. There is no time limit on this program, it won’t expire, and they have newsletters and tips.

Click the links in these tweets and secure your computers. It’s time we take back our data.

Everything was OK as long as there were enough apples, but when scarcity set in, artificial intelligence began to eliminate the enemy and seize the apples.

Source: Google’s Artificial Intelligence Getting “Greedy,” And “Aggressive”

It’s looking increasingly likely that artificial intelligence (AI) will be the harbinger of the next technological revolution. When it develops to the point wherein it is able to learn, think, and …

Source: Google’s “DeepMind” AI understands the benefits

Robots are taking jobs, but also creating them 

Robots, far more than free trade, are upending labor markets around the globe. Economists debate how much these machines threaten different kinds of jobs.

Millions of people around the world would lose their jobs under these scenarios, potentially sparking mass social unrest and upheaval.

From Duck Duck Go

[DuckDuckGo is the search engine that doesn’t track you. We protect your search history from everyone — even them!]

“Companies like Google uses your profile to filter the results they show you, based on what they think you are most likely to click on. This is commonly known as the “Filter Bubble.”  It’s a form of corporate censorship that can be used to influence public opinion (even unintentionally), such as election outcomes and other political issues.”

Want to learn more about how you are being censored? Check out the TED talk by Eli Parsier.

PBS: What Do Data Brokers Really Know?

While at the Aspen Ideas Festival in CO, Julia Angwin sat down with PBS’s Hari Sreenivasan to discuss what kinds of information data brokers gather about us, how they use it, and what we can do about it.  Read a transcript of our conversation, or watch the video below.

http://player.pbs.org/viralplayer/2365284309/

 

Your papers please?

Granted, in the absence of a national ID card, “we the people” are already tracked in a myriad of ways: through our state driver’s licenses, Social Security numbers, bank accounts, purchases and electronic transactions; by way of our correspondence and communication devices—email, phone calls and mobile phones; through chips implanted in our vehicles, identification documents, even our clothing.

800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update

From my friend Toritto:

On June 2, 2014 I posted the below article concerning an Irish historian’s claim that hundreds of dead babies were to be found on the grounds of a “home” for unwed mothers run by …

PLEASE READ: 800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update

It’s Friday and a good day to cry my eyes out… Lara/Trace

Ireland coverage

Nazi loot | Art Theft Crackdown | “Cultural Property” | Repatriation

The maker of baking products, muesli and pizza, promises to return any plundered art to heirs of Jewish owners

READ: German baker Dr Oetker finds possible Nazi loot in company art collection

Returns of cultural property

Under the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, Canada has returned the following cultural property to its country of origin since 1997

Cree artist Kent Monkman says the title of his exhibit “Shame and Prejudice” reflects the “harsh” experiences of indigenous peoples in Canada over the last 150 years.  The show opened recently in Toronto then will tour the country.

Source: Video: Art show delves into Canada’s treatment of indigenous peoples – The Globe and Mail

Tip of the iceburg

Tip leads police to long-missing pieces by famed Quebec artist in Montreal home, but underworld art trade is widespread and international

Source: Recovery of three stolen Riopelle paintings just tip of iceberg – The Globe and Mail

By LT

Hi everyone,

I wanted to share the Smoke Signals sculpture (blurry top photo) by  Allan Houser (Apache) on display at the Mashantucket Pequot’s casino Foxwoods.  The tribe has amassed a huge collection of art.  Why?  They could afford it, being the world’s richest tribe, and they wanted to preserve a variety of Native American artworks, and support the artist and his or her family…  The trickle-down theory is traditional practice in Indian Country.  When I worked for them, our newspaper staff had a tour of the paintings and sculptures at the casino and at the Pequot Museum.  It was incredible.

Art has huge value! As you can see, it’s a victim of trafficking, too! Across this planet, ART is vitally important, especially when we live in turbulent times.  With poverty in the majority of tribal communities and in Third Worlds, art can save lives, when someone displays a talent, like painting, or music, or acting.  That talent can be your ticket off the rez, and later, with enough money earned, it’s your ticket back.   Many many cultures send their young adults out to make money so they can send money home…

Found/Acquired: Alberta (Americas,North America,Canada,Alberta) 1850-1900 Acquisition notes Part of the Freeman Collection, a body of material collected c.1900 on the “Blood Reserve”, a Kainai reservation in Alberta, by Frederick and Maude Deane-Freeman. Frederick was a government official charged with distributing rations to the native families, and knew the people he and his wife collected the material from by name. Most of the collection was purchased by the British Museum in 1903 with assistance from Dr. Robert Bell and Lord Minto. This object was originally owned by Red Crow, a noted warrior from the band of Kainai known as Fish Eaters and for many years paramount chief of the Kainai.

Trading art and artifact for money started in colonial times.  Were Native artists paid well?  I seriously doubt it.  Look at the British Museum and you can see how government officials and trading posts made trades with Indians for centuries.  Robbed? Ah, I think so!  Or anthropologists who came in and dug stuff up and called it their own.  Those artifacts are now called “Cultural Property” and some looted countries and tribal nations are calling to get their property returned.  And we know the Nazi stole artworks and the Jews are asking for it back.

Art has value for its history, too.  Art defines who we are as humanity! [This act of getting it back to the original owners is called repatriation.]

In the US, big organizations like the National Endowment of the Arts help fund today’s artists and their communities, which helps tourism, which creates even more value and jobs.  With t-rump, the arts are entering the danger zone:

President Donald Trump sent shockwaves through the art world when it shared its federal budget, which calls for completely scrapping the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The president and his pals are evidently blind to the value of art, but as many of us know so well, both agencies have supported countless individuals and organizations with the roughly .004% of the federal budget that each receives annually.

To illustrate just how beneficial the NEA’s work has been, artist and environmental engineer Tega Brain has programmed a website that scrolls through the types of  grants the NEA awarded last year alone. Like end credits of a movie, each funded project moves slowly down your screen in bright colors to form a simple but clear message: we really need the NEA.

https://twitter.com/AttorneyLana/status/827533367432323072

Support artists however and whenever you can…  LT

Teach the Children Well | Vermont’s Abenaki History | Eugenics target Pirate Families and Indians?

Lucy Cannon Neel, Chairperson of the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs presented at the Benson Village School on December 21, 2016. Lucy shared about the history and continued presence (of Indians in Vermont)…

READ: Teach the Children Well

Vermont eugenics: When our branding wasn’t so sweet | Rutland Reader

[AMAZING Truth!]

Excerpt: …Founded in 1925 by University of Vermont zoology professor Henry F. Perkins, the Eugenics Survey of Vermont was built on the “belief in the existence of racial stereotypes,” and “accepted the myth that certain people (particularly those of northern Europe) possess a monopoly of desired characteristics, and thought that human differences were invariably caused by heredity.”

Armed with these beliefs, Perkins and his supporters went out into the hills and valleys of Vermont searching for, studying and analyzing the so-called data on the “pirate families,” those who lived on houseboats and had French-Canadian ancestry; “gypsy families,” those with the dark-skin of African-American, Abenaki or French-Canadian descent; “chorea families,” those with the illness Huntington’s Chorea; and other “defectives.” [Hunting them down? OMG]

The categorization of these “inadequates” included: illiterate, illegitimate, insane, thief, queer, pauper, immoral, dishonest, rapist, sex offender, syphilitic, untruthful, epileptic, twin, stillborn, dependent, alcoholic, speech defect, “just not right,” harelip, “a little odd,” sloppy, light-fingered, “smoked and chewed at age 12,” wild, wanderer, cruel, deserted husband or wife, one-eyed, tuberculosis, poor memory, breach of peace, shiftless, degenerate.     [OK OK… I am several of these, including illegitimate/adopted. How about you?]

***top photo is the spooky Vermont State Hospital in Waterbury, VT. (UVM / photo)

The Eugenics Survey of Vermont

seems pretty recent to me

Source: Vermont Eugenics

darkness-under-water-book-cover darkness-under-water-book-info-jpegI met Beth, the author of The Darkness Under The Water (on this very topic) at the Wisconsin Book Festival in 2009…I love her book!

Footnote:  Well well well… A Zoology Professor was in charge of eugenics in Vermont – this explains so much… His worldview of Indians was obviously “wild savages.”  Again, I bet you never heard this news/history in your textbooks and I know how this kind of BAD His-Story shocks people in a bad way.

We’re in the Trump years, and anything can (and will) happen.

PS: My ancestry includes French Canadian from Quebec/Ottawa which makes me so very happy to be alive…  Pirate Lara/Trace who is still “a little odd…”

***OH GOD — ONE MORE THING!!! (with a warning – I was sick reading this)

EUGENICS: ‘Reprograming the Human Genome’, The Hidden History of Bar Harbor, MAINE…William E. Castle was an organizing member of the Second International Congress of Eugenics (New York, 1921) which in 1922 dissolved into the American Eugenics Society (AES) which was funded by America’s powerful industrial elite.

THIS

Breaking News: #StandingRock #NoDAPL

READ: US Army Corps to Issue Easement for Completion of DAPL – Native News Online

https://www.facebook.com/confluencedocumentary/videos/1358973087486299/

 

 

Native Americans expect nothing good from Trump… | What’s LOVE got to do with it | Are things getting weird enough?

…but will the media pay attention at all?

READ: Native Americans expect nothing good from Trump… | USA | Al Jazeera

READ: Performative Sovereignty and DAPL (#NoDAPL)

LOVE?

Last year saw a victory for a US President running on a platform of hatred, and a UK vote to leave the EU on a platform of fear. Both campaigns painfully revealed how deeply divided both the United States and the United Kingdom are, and how conflicted our ideas of justice have become.  But 2016 also marked the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. And if anyone understood what comprises the bedrock of justice, Shakespeare did: Love.

READ: What’s Love (and Shakespeare) Got to Do with It? – BLARB

***

Things getting weird enough for you?

How about this… the CIA dumped truckloads of files onto the ‘Net in early January and all of a sudden people like you and me can read just how spooky the CIA has been and could be (of course secretly).  This is where our tax money goes?

If you don’t believe me – watch a clip The Men Who Stare at Goats… 🙂

CIA Docs Reveal Agency’s Longtime Obsession With UFOs, Magic 

(REPORT) — The juicy bits of the CIA’s massive document dump may have centered on their overt use of torture against detainees and the internal debates underpinning that policy, but it’s far from the only thing in there that warrants a second look.  The documents also include substantial information about CIA obsession with UFO sightings, policies for using invisible ink, and their determined investigation into magicians.

Reports on the UFOs described some 20% of sightings as “unexplained,” and sought more cooperation from the Pentagon in documentation of such sightings, particularly pushing to ensure that all high-ranking Air Force commanders were briefed on the rules for reporting about them.

The CIA showed concern both about the “national security” implications of flying saucers, and the intelligence ramifications of them, with the advisory committee urging “close attention” be paid both to Russian actions with respect to UFOs, and public opinion within the US about them.

With respect to magic, the CIA appears to have become intensely interested in the phenomenon in the late 1960s and early 1970s, with one 1969 document about a “self-educated magician” in Soviet Georgia who was able to perform “miracle” healings through the laying of hands.

The CIA’s interest in magic got a lot bigger in short order, and within a few years they were bringing in television psychic Uri Geller, who famously used to bend spoons on TV with the power of his mind.

Incredibly, the CIA was quickly convinced that Geller had real powers, and tried to move into remote viewing, the attempt to conduct surveillance on sites they don’t have access to via supernatural means.

By Lara Trace Hentz

So why are we hearing about all of this now? (My brain beeps… the CIA is unleashing secret files we never thought we’d see.  Woohoo, maybe t-rump scared them silly…)

I am sure many of you are already FULL of news, as in brain bloated and ready to explode.  Me, too.
My cousin Charlie and I have been emailing tidbits and I wanted to share a quote that I sent to him:
 
“…Trump’s behavior is so upsetting to his opposition that our elected representatives are willing to sign off on people they might ordinarily see as excessively radical because they’re so terrified of what Trump might do without an experienced and paternal figure like “Mad Dog” Mattis or Rex Tillerson in there to reign him in.
“…It’s classic good cop-bad cop. The more unhinged Trump appears the more comforting his generals look,  the more reassuring a three or four-star general appears… And the people who need to know that know that (like the CIA who use that.)
An Outsider’s Sojourn II posted this about the CIA as organized crime [Edward Curtin is a writer whose work has appeared widely. He teaches sociology at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.  His website is edwardcurtin.com.]
T-rump is already 10 steps ahead of us, and it’s remarkable (and not) to see how he was (s)elected…
But I have this really sick feeling ::: they start a fire in your front yard (24/7 news, KellyAnne/Spicer weirdness) while they do their work in your backyard.  We are seeing this in action now.  It’s actions not words (and executive order signings) that we need to watch… Distraction is rampant…
They have used this tactic on Indians since treaty times. I learned about this from a Northern Cheyenne friend in Seattle. It really works! He used the example of the Indian Barbie doll (in the early 90s) which had people really upset while sovereign treaty rights were being violated. Now Winona LaDuke is signalling this:

We are dealing with a ROGUE (a real mobster with no training to be president). He could be manipulated (even blackmailed) by other rulers to commit human rights horrors (and vice versa – t-rump has cameras in his hotels too.)

This guy REALLY has the nuke codes… the most terrifying thought of all…

P.S.  On another note I read an old playboy MUST READ interview where t-rump listed off men he looked up to… all studio heads and business guys from the golden age of Hollywood and show business..

Aaaah, that figures… (it’s insight into who t-rump really is)

https://filthy.media/donald-trump-playboy-interview

AND PAID TO CLAP ::: The press reported cheering (^?^) at Donald’s press conference and at his address at the CIA memorial, and it turned out to be his staffers, an entourage of fawning sycophants paid to clap. It’s funny, at first. Then you realize that it’s a grotesque headgame that is only going to get worse.  READ: Why Trump brings clapping, laughing sycophants to his press events and appearances / Boing Boing

#NoDAPL update | YES! Special Report

How to Help #NODAPL Tribe: http://standwithstandingrock.net/donate/

From The Hill:

Trump takes action to move forward with Keystone, Dakota Access pipelines

The Spirit of Standing Rock on the Move People from more than 300 tribes traveled to the North Dakota plains to pray and march in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux. Back home, each tribe faces its own version of the “black snake” and a centuries-old struggle to survive.

More than 300 tribes have sent representatives to the North Dakota Plains in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux, each one them temporarily leaving behind their own tribe’s historic struggles to survive.

READ: YES! Special Report

Keystone XL Pipeline Revived

Here.

Cascade of Lies Leading Back to 9/11 | Crimes of Seal Team 6 | U.S. Decline to Banana Republic

There have been many governments through history with people like Trump/Kushner in power; they just haven’t been democracies.

READ: Beneath Trump’s Mockery of a Reporter, a Cascade of Lies Leading Back to 9/11


READ: The Crimes of SEAL Team 6

U.S. Decline to Banana Republic Accelerates as Trump Places Son-in-Law Jared Kushner in White House

All this matters because Kushner may be the single most important influence on Trump.

Hey everyone:

I wanted to share a resource that is very good if you are keeping up with news as a citizen journalist/blogger/vlogger.

Journalist’s Resource

Fake news and the spread of misinformation

This collection of research offers insights into the impacts of fake news, including fake Twitter images, and how people use the internet to spread rumors and misinformation.

College grade inflation: Looking for a cause

What is behind college grade inflation? A new study finds students are enrolling in easier subjects, while some soft professors may be handing out undeserved high marks.

Blogging in the Trump years

By LT

Wow, 2017 and 6 years since I started this blog.  I became a journalist in 1996.

In those 20 years, many of us watched journalism change, but not for the better.  (Think about the embedded journalists in Iraq during the Bush years.  Shock-and-awe to have journalists told and shown what they report?  That war cost us billions.)  This loss of fair and honest reporting cost us more than money, as citizens, and as voters.  We do not get impartial reporting in the US.  We’re told so many lies, it’s hard to gauge/guess/judge who is more guilty – the press or the politician.  We know politicians lie but it’s totally out-of-control when media is broadcasting them day and night. (That news cycle 24/7 has made us so weary, apathy and exhaustion sets in fast.)  In the past year, many major news outlets and TV news were not doing their job as investigators, not even admitting their errors.  A democracy demands freedom of the press.  The press serves us, its citizens, its voters, its readers. What happened to the press?


We are heading into unchartered waters with this new Trump administration and the truth gets murkier by the hour. It’s obvious Trump watches a lot of TV, since he’s still a reality TV producer.  Trump’s becoming Leader-in-Tweet. [Those Twitter people should seriously yank his account.] He has a tweet for everything, it seems.


//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

I had a good cry last night when actress Meryl Streep said, “Take your broken heart and make it into art.” She was quoting her late friend, Carrie Fisher.  Streep took on Trump then a tweet storm exploded.

I’d been seriously wondering if now is a good time to give up blogging, but I quickly reconsidered.  Now is not the time to stop.  NOW is the time to consider and reconsider what we read, write, and how we act/react. 

Our energy is not to be wasted on fluff or gimmicks or shtick.  If Big Media/Social Media is failing us, then blogs will offer a new freedom, free and uncensored in the next four years.  But our quest is to read the BEST blogs and hear the BEST podcasts.  (I am following over 250 blogs now and plan to scale way way back.  Like you, I want to be informed, educated, enlightened, and of course, amused.)

I am thankful to blogs like fivethirtyeight.com who are reporting on Trump’s many conflicts of interest here.  Painter is concerned about Trump’s potential conflicts of interest and said laws should incorporate what we know from science. “There needs to be more effort to address underlying psychological biases,” he said.

I am thankful to Native News Online for constant updates from Standing Rock, like this.

Thanks to my dear friend Carol Hand for her thoughtful amazing blog and this article about our changing climate and effects on trees.  And to Dr. Stuart Bramhall for her

The Most Revolutionary Act.

from Twitter
from Twitter

Big thanks to Hyperallergic for a burgeoning artist movement that is gearing up for the next four years of Trump: Required Reading …good things that happened in 2016, like this Twitter photo on populism in Trumplandia, and more.] Sign up for their emails like  I did.

Looking back, we had a standoff of US military EQUIPPED to wage war against unarmed water protectors in North Dakota, and Big Media barely show up?

How will BIG MEDIA ever earn back our trust? (Like when Fox News was nicknamed Bush Propaganda News.)  Since when did journalists care so much about their own fame and fortune and clicks?  Can’t they see past their paychecks? Does greed poison everything?

We journalists do have a hard job to do, covering politics at a safe distance, building reliable good sources, counting on the integrity of publishers and editors who don’t take bribes or succumb to threats.

Where did their integrity go?  Did it do a nosedive when journalism joined up with social media, and became about who gets the most clicks and hits on their websites.  Is marketing and selling and ratings priority? Social Media has become a perversion, an invasion, a monitor, sanctioned by tyrants like Trump who can dominate an entire news cycle with a single tweet.

As citizens, we need accountability of the press and the politician.  I am sure that Trump Presidency will start a whole new wave of citizen journalism and blogging.

I will be writing here on this blog weekly, and sharing what I find worthy of your time and my own.

journalists

Thanks to all of you who blog/create/write so generously and read this blog.

I hope people, including bloggers, begin to speak up when shit really starts hitting the fan.  Trump will affect nearly all aspects of our daily lives, and at some point I don’t think it’s going to be possible to just pretend it’s not happening.

Last Real Indians | History Snobs ask Why Now? #SlaveryPublicHistory

By LT (wearing my heavy history hat)

My cousin Charlie is saying he’s in the fourth stage of grief – “If we can laugh it means we are in the Kubler-Ross 4th stage.” I do think we need to laugh and cry.

Last weekend I watched a live feed history symposium at Brown University in Rhode Island. First, I was overwhelmed and overcome with information. I took copious notes. I was very pleased how Native American Slavery was talked about, too.  I was happy to see people of color from around the world giving presentations on their own history truths. (I even posted a few photos on Instagram since this was historic!) Then I got so angry. Several things hit me like bricks!

Last Real Indians published my op-ed on Tuesday.

Here it is:

History Snobs ask Why Now? #SlaveryPublicHistory

“The great force of history comes from the fact that we carry it within us, are unconsciously controlled by it in many ways, and history is literally present in all that we do.” ― James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985

By Trace Lara Hentz for Last Real Indians

This Snobs headline ought to get me a few gasps and new readers. No, I’m not a history snob. I’m a lover. I can’t get enough of what I call His-Story: where/there, when/then, what/that.

I watched (with baited breath) the live feed of the history symposium at Brown University.  Official title: SLAVERY AND GLOBAL PUBLIC HISTORY: New Challenges. It’s about: Universities across the United States and the world have been forced to confront connections to slavery throughout their histories. From Brown to Yale, Oxford and in South Africa, students, faculty, and administrations wrestle with how to expose, conceal, honor, or memorialize the legacies of slavery. LINK: https://www.brown.edu/initiatives/slavery-and-justice/global-public-history/schedule

Continue reading “Last Real Indians | History Snobs ask Why Now? #SlaveryPublicHistory”

[BREAKING NEWS] The Beginning is Near: The Deep North, Evictions and Pipeline Deadlines

By Winona LaDuke

Special to News From Indian Country and Everybody Else

Standing Rock is an unpredicted history lesson for all of us.  More than any moment I recall since Wounded Knee, the Vietnam War, or the time of Martin Luther King, this moment stands as a crossroads in the battle for social justice.  It is also an economic issue, in a time of economic system transformation, and profoundly a question of the future of this land.  The world is watching.

As the US Army Corps of Engineers issues a December 5 eviction notice for thousands of people gathered on the banks of the Missouri River, we face our truth.  Those people at the Oceti Sakowin and Red Warrior Camps, along with the 550 people who have been arrested so far, are really the only thing standing between a river and a corporation that wants to pollute it.  That we know, because absent any legal protections, and with a regulatory system hijacked by oil interests and a federal government in crisis, the people and the river remain the only clear and sentient beings.

In short, this is a moment of extreme corporate rights and extreme racism confronted by courage, prayers, and resolve.  This moment has been coming.  The violence and the economics of a failing industry will indeed unravel, and this is the beginning.

The Deep North

North Dakota did not become Alabama – or the Deep North, as it is now called – overnight. Native people in North Dakota have been treated poorly for more than a hundred years, whether by the damming of the Missouri and the flooding of millions of acres of tribal land, or by poverty and incarceration, North Dakota is a place of systemic and entrenched racism.

Two of the poorest counties in the country are on Standing Rock, Native people comprise almost a fourth of the people in prison, Native suicide rates are ten times that of North Dakotans, infrastructure (like the fifty year old hospital with four doctors for 8000 people, and a now blocked Highway l806, without a shoulder) is at an all-time low, and people freeze to death and overdose in the shadow of the Bakken Oil fields.

That’s the first layer of abuse, aside from the day to day racism, emboldened by Morton County and the incoming Trump government. It is visible for the world to see now.

For many who come, North Dakota is something unknown. Americans fly over the state, talk about how the movie Fargo was funny, and wonder sheepishly about how it’s working out in the Bakken.  Very few visit, and there is almost no civil society to advocate for the environment or the people.

Let me put it this way, until this year, the Sierra Club had one staff person in North Dakota, and the American Civil Liberties Union had one staff member covering both North and South Dakota. It is as if North Dakota is just too uncomfortable for a progressive movement to visit or work in.  Instead, we have watched.

After all, the sex trafficking, violence, and corruption has overwhelmed most of the state’s capacity to address it, and a recent study by the National Academy of Sciences found widespread groundwater contamination in the fracking fields.

For North Dakotans it has become just how it is… That is to say: accommodating corporations is the North Dakota way.  This last year, North Dakota health officials excused more oil spills without penalty, and increased the allowable levels of radiation in municipal and county dumps to accommodate the fracking industry.  The corporations direct state policy. It’s been easy to put it out of mind because after all, it seems so far away when we view the world from our television or smartphone.

In the midst of this, we find ourselves facing a larger set of forces.  As of November 18, the Morton County Sheriff’s Department inventoried their troops at 1,287 deputies, including police from 25 North Dakota counties, 20 North Dakota cities, and 9 states (Indiana, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming).  Over 550 people have been arrested, many of them strip searched and cavity searched for misdemeanor charges, and a number of them held overnight in dog kennels.  Now the state has fired on unarmed people who want to protect the water from contamination.

After all, that’s what this is about.  To serve the convenience of a deadline for Energy Transfer Partners’s corporate profits, the police have fired teargas canisters, water hoses, concussion grenades, rubber bullets, tasers, and bean bag rounds at unarmed people trying to protect their water supply. Most of them are Native, and the North Dakota media has continued to portray the water protectors as outlaws.

When 21 year old New York resident Sophia Wilansky’s arm was blown off by a concussion grenade, Morton County Sheriff Kirchenmeir suggested that the water protectors caused it.  KEEP READING: The Beginning is Near: The Deep North, Evictions and Pipeline Deadlines – Indian Country News

Uncracking local his-story

By LT

Hey everyone…

We made it through Native American Heritage Month and National Adoption Awareness Month.  Whew.  If you watch twitter or facebook, there was plenty to see and read.

 

I gave a talk about the new anthology STOLEN GENERATIONS at the college here on Nov. 16.  There were many people who sincerely want to understand what is truth, what really happened around here, what they didn’t learn in school… from an Indigenous perspective. I told the audience my talk should have been titled: “We’re not supposed to know.”

His-story – that is the division we are seeing everywhere. There is plenty we are not supposed to know.

So, what is truth?

I sent a letter to the Turners Falls Mascot Committee so they might reconsider its use:

Dear School Board:

I have just a few things about the Turners Falls mascot issue and local history.

This issue is not a surprise. The community near Great Falls doesn’t know the history. Who exactly wrote the account of what happened in Turners Falls?  Let’s be clear. It was not the Pocumtuck or Wampanoag or any of the other tribes who lost their lives on that fateful day.

Time after time, war after war, history is told (or not told) by the victor, the winner of the conflict.

When I interviewed leaders of the Eastern Pequot years back, I wanted Connecticut to know its own history, largely unwritten, hidden. Marcia Flowers said, “we’ve been cleaning people’s houses for the past 300+ years.”

Indian people knew it was best to be invisible.  Many still feel this way: invisible.

Pequot scalps? The bounty was $100 in colonial times. $100 is like a million dollars today, right?

Why don’t we all know this?

We’re not supposed to know.

This issue over mascots makes it clear. We argue over history. If it creates conflict, this is exactly how the oppressor and oppression works.

We in North America are literally educated to be ignorant of the true history. It’s a blood-soaked path in the pioneer valley and westward.  Fictions were crafted by the nation builders who used war/massacre/colonization on the First Nations Indian People yet these facts were diminished or erased.  Hiding truth and history only perpetuates continued racism and intolerance.  Your Indian mascot doesn’t honor anyone but reveals our ignorance.

OPEN FORUM: School Board Meetings on mascot issue
OPEN FORUM: School Board Meetings on the mascot issue in Turners Falls, Massachusetts

P.S.

I understand people here think that their Indian mascot is their version of honoring the past or a sincere form of loving Indians.  Your mascot offends us? It does… deeply.

for more on the Dakota Access PipeLine and #NoDAPL for more on the water protectors… go to twitter or watch Facebook

CLICK TO SEE:

 

Orphans Internment at Manzanar | The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race

How the Photography of Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams Told the Story of Japanese American Internment

excerpt:

Manzanar had the only orphanage among all the camps, and it housed a total of 101 children at one point.  Called the Children’s Village, it had a sympathetic Japanese-American director, but its young residents were shunned by the rest of the camp — outcasts in a ethnic community that valued family ties and pure-Japanese identity. Incarcerated parents discouraged their children from playing or associating with the orphans.

Dorothea Lange, Manzanar, California, July 1, 1942. Orphans from San Francisco at the camp’s Childrens’ Village. (photographed by Dorothea Lange for the WRA, courtesy the National Archives [Archives Identifier 538187])

Although some of the orphanage’s children were left to the care of professionals before the war due to economic hardship, Japanese American society at the time was bluntly racist, and multiracial children faced discrimination within the tight knit LA community. Nineteen children at Los Angeles’ Shonien Home orphanage were recorded as mixed race, and a fifth of the orphans in the Children’s Village were multiracial according to records from the period.

The day before taking photos at the Children’s Village, Lange captured images of the camp’s first grave, which belonged to 62-year-old Matsunosuke Murakami.  One of the camp’s first detainees, Murakami had fallen ill upon arrival and was confined to the camp hospital for less than two months before passing away in May 1942.  Roughly 150 people died in the camp before it was closed on November 21, 1945.  Six graves remain at Manzanar, and one is for the body of an unnamed stillborn infant in an unmarked grave whose parents were later moved to another camp.

[Top photo: Ansel Adams, “Manzanar from Guard Tower, view west (Sierra Nevada in background), Manzanar Relocation Center, California” (1943). One way Adams got around the WRA restrictions (photographed by Ansel Adams, courtesy the Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division [reproduction no. LC-DIG-ppprs-00224])

READ MORE

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Between the Lines: Rich Blint, Wendy Walters, and Kiese Laymon
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, November 28, 2016, 6:30 pm

The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race edited by Jesmyn Ward uses James Baldwin’s 1963 examination of race in America, The Fire Next Time, to engage “eighteen of today’s most original thinkers.” Rich Blint will moderate this conversation with two of the book’s contributing writers, Wendy Walters, and Kiese Laymon.

Blint is the 2016-2017 Scholar-in-Residence at Pratt Institute. He is also the co-editor (with Douglas Field) of a special issue of African American Review on James Baldwin and contributing editor of The James Baldwin Review. Blint was also featured in our podcast series, “Schomburg Mixtape,” discussing the importance of Baldwin’s work.

The Traffickers: US Pro-Adoption Lobby #NAAM2016

Fusion’s newest investigative series: The Whistleblower from The Netherlands…

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Source: http://fusion.net/video

An exclusive first look at Fusion’s newest investigative series, ‘The Traffickers’
By Fusion | November 3, 2016

From Asia to Africa and beyond, journalist Nelufar Hedayat goes under the radar tracking down black markets in Fusion’s newest series, The Traffickers, to learn how guns, babies, even human organs are bought, moved, and sold to the highest bidder.

In this exclusive look at the first episode, Nelufar begins her journey in America, which adopts more children from overseas than all other countries in the world put together. But ominous forces lurk beneath many of these joyful unions.

CLICK:

https://player.ooyala.com/tframe.html?embedCode=c5cnE3NzE6ciQQ5Z2L_vpEF8xGTFTkEC&pbid=6233f5fb56044b649b50dde3c5893e9d

The Traffickers airs Sundays at 10 PM on Fusion.

 

***

What do we do now? #Election2016

 

By LT 

(White Lash video: what DO we tell our kids and grandkids? The truth, all of it…)

I’m sure there are plenty of people gloating, in shock, or some even panicking, over the electoral vote for The Donald, as if this one particular presidency is going to make our life better, worse and/or different.  I’m sure there are still optimists out there who think that this guy will change everything and rapidly. Or that Trump is the first common man’s president, since he’s a non-politician and considered an outspoken revolutionary.

When I was editor of Ojibwe Akiing, I recall when Jesse Ventura (left photo) was that guy too.  He was elected governor of Minnesota (1999-2003) and he said (coming from a background of no political experience) that he would not meet with special interests. That was when the tribes in Minnesota requested to meet with him. This knucklehead was unaware of the federal treaties and the government-to-government relationship with tribes.  In Minnesota, there are seven Anishinaabe (Chippewa, Ojibwe) reservations and four Dakota (Sioux) communities.  Lackluster in his governance and low on experience, Ventura didn’t last long in the political arena.  [He told tribes he had used hand grenades to catch fish. Just toss the grenade into a lake and BOOM! Yup, true story.]

We’d assume the learning curve for any non-politician to take office is pretty steep.  What could possibly happen? or go wrong? or nothing happens – like with Obama who was blocked by Congress at every turn?

Other journalists and I are making a list of what is going to affect tribes in the near future with The Donald Presidency.  (Like the Supreme Court Justice appointment.) Personally I don’t think the Standing Rock protectors are safe, the Dakota Access PipeLine (hashtag #NoDAPL) will proceed quickly and some protectors could actually be murdered, a bloody sacrifice for Big Oil interests. Trump invested in pipelines.

I watched the protests last night on TV.  I applaud them but will it work?

My husband is a mix of African American and Native American.  He has lived through many presidents and has lived a very different experience than me, one that is hard for me to fathom.  Frisked for being black? The Danger of DWB: Driving while Black? Hands Up: Don’t Shoot Me (or us)??

Can you for one minute imagine that?

This is real life in America.  Not wanting to take a leisurely drive to hill-towns near us because he could be a target and shot in cold blood by some random rifle-carrying racist?  Don’t take unnecessary risks?  This is his thinking, yet I can only imagine what it’s been like for him; I cannot live his experience in his skin but I am living it my own way.

My husband could be killed. That has been and will continue to be my fear and my reality and more so, due to The Donald presidency.

What I fear most with the Donald President is an increase in racial violence and police killings of non-white Americans.  It’s a real fear, one that was witnessed in the campaign rallies when non-whites were targets, and Trump eagerly encouraged it. It’s hard to tell what “the real Donald is”, as in real life. Was his campaign all “show”? It felt poisonous. Is he dangerous and a psychopath?

I am afraid of Trump and many many other people are, too.

Wishing this would end won’t help us now.  I cannot stop feeling that it’s our reality now.

I ask for your prayers that we rise up united and reject racism at its foundation and core and not be the racist misogynist sexist country that Trump is/was/or will be encouraging.

Thank you for reading this blog! Peace and Love UNITED…

 

 

trumpwarrenpocahontas

 

***Wikipedia:  Trump’s populist[9][10] positions in opposition to illegal immigration and various free trade agreements, such as his opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership,[11][12][13][14] have earned him support especially among white[15] blue-collar voters and voters without college degrees.[16][17] Many of his remarks have been controversial and have helped his campaign garner extensive coverage by the mainstream media, trending topics, and social media.[18][19]

QUOTE:

  • “From the start, Trump targeted the (mostly) white working class, which happens to be 40 percent of the country. And he’s done it not just with issues, but with how he talks — the ball-busting, the “bragging,” the over-the-top promises…  But it speaks volumes — whole encyclopedias — about the ignorance of our political and media elites that they’re only now realizing that much of what Trump’s been doing is just busting balls.  It’s a blue-collar ritual, with clear rules — overtly insulting, sure, but with infinite subtleties. It can be a test of manliness, a sign of respect, a way of bonding and much more.  Why Trump Wins

*/*/*/*/*/

Ventura in 2016

✓ Ventura endorsed Gary Johnson for the 2016 presidential general election.[6]

Read about the Ventura legacy:

Before Trump, there was Jesse Ventura — and an improbable victory …

MPR: The political legacy of Jesse Ventura

***Ventura’s campaign was unexpectedly successful, with him narrowly defeating both the Democratic and Republican candidates. The highest elected official to ever win an election on a Reform Party ticket, Ventura left the Reform Party a year after taking office amid internal fights for control over the party. [WIKI*]