Paul Haeder, Author

writing, interviews, editing, blogging

The number of gun sales in Oregon by Christmas Day, 2020, was a whopping 400,000. The year before, an anemic 300,000.

It is the law of the gun. Guns in jets, guns in bombers, guns in schools, guns here on the streets, in Salem, at the Capital, guns in Grand Theft Auto V, guns in purses, guns in boudoirs, guns in locker-rooms, guns in nurseries, guns in  churches, guns in cars, guns in drones, guns guns guns.

Dalton Trumbo, quote from Johnny Got His Gun :

An equation: 40,000 dead young men = 3,000 tons of bone and flesh, 124,000 pounds of brain matter, 50,000 gallons of blood, 1,840,000 years of life that will never be lived, 100,000 children that will never be born (the last we can afford: there are too many starving children in the world already)….

Did anybody ever come back from the dead any single one of the millions who got killed did any one of them ever come back and say by god I’m glad I’m dead because death is always better than dishonor? Did they say I’m glad I died to make the world safe for democracy? Did they say I like death better than losing liberty? Did any of them ever say it’s good to think I got my guts blown out for the honor of my country? Did any of them ever say look at me I’m dead but I died for decency and that’s better than being alive? Did any of them ever say here I am I’ve been rotting for two years in a foreign grave but it’s wonderful to die for your native land? Did any of them say hurray I died for womanhood and I’m happy see how I sing even though my mouth is choked with worms?

Of course, the sideshow bantering about the attack on the Capitol, the five dead in DC (remember Four Dead in Ohio?), who did what, is it a coup, are the halls of Congress sacred and hallowed, and something never seen before in the history of the United Snakes of America.

“Ohio”
(from “Journey Through The Past” soundtrack)

Tin soldiers and Nixon coming,
We’re finally on our own.
This summer I hear the drumming,
Four dead in Ohio.

Gotta get down to it
Soldiers are cutting us down
Should have been done long ago.
What if you knew her
And found her dead on the ground
How can you run when you know?

Gotta get down to it
Soldiers are cutting us down
Should have been done long ago.
What if you knew her
And found her dead on the ground
How can you run when you know?

Tin soldiers and Nixon coming,
We’re finally on our own.
This summer I hear the drumming,
Four dead in Ohio.
Four dead in Ohio (Four dead)
Four dead in Ohio (Four)
Four dead in Ohio (How many?)
Four dead in Ohio (How many more?)
Four dead in Ohio (Why?)
Four dead in Ohio (Oh!)
Four dead in Ohio (Four)
Four dead in Ohio (Why?)
Four dead in Ohio (Why?)

Of course, hysterical bantering on both sides of the political manure pile. Then all those “defund the police” woke people now wanting to throw the book at anyone and everyone at the “event,” even those milling around, or those who just came in for a selfie and had nothing to do with the ramming of the Capitol doors and baracades.

This is an inside job, of course — white nationalists in the police department, and a bunch of others flashing badges to get inside the Rotunda.

Impeach again, do a 25th amendment thing, call out the Guard, more laws, more fences, more surveillance tools, more eye, face, skin recognition AI. The trillions being made, passed back and forth, and the people with MAGA hats, and the people with Biden Buttons, the moldy media, the entire shit show really doesn’t give us a look at the new normal. This is old hand, the Cool Hand Luke world of Indian Slaughtering and Slave Torturing.

[Speaking to her son Luke] You know, sometimes, I wished people was like dogs, Luke. Comes a time, a day like, when the bitch just don’t recognize the pups no more, so she don’t have no hopes nor love to give her pain. She just don’t give a damn.”— ArlettaCool Hand Luke

Oh, the upside world of right-side thinking — Many people arrested during the J20 protests of Trump’s inauguration, as you will recall, faced decades in prison for breaking storefront windows. Then, those two Black Lives Matter protesters who are lawyers, Colin Mattis and Urooj Rahman, went to town on an empty NYPD police car (vandalizing it) and are now facing federal charges with a sentence of 45 years to life.

The slippery slope that is the United Snakes of America. Lock her up. Abu Ghraib them all. Throw the key away.

Look, I have been thrown down and handcuffed several times over the years for, get this, peaceful protests. Protests where we had a fucking license (parade permit) to do our little First Amendment show.

In Arizona, in Texas, in Washington, in Oregon. I have been thrown down and cuffed as a teacher. As a frigging journalist. Try and protest the timber tyrants, or push for dam removal, or how about protesting Sea World or a zoo or circus for their elephant imprisonments.

I guarantee, those Proud Boys, those MAGA women we see at events, at the Capitol, all those bearded bikers, those blue-collar millionaires, come on, liberals, there is no dialogue to be had. They never has been. You think there is dialogue here?

They are unable to reason with evidence. In fact, they exclude or misrepresent it. They are incapable (literally) of thinking in a “complex” way, considering the dynamic integration of five or more variables, each one carrying vectors of competing classes, histories, nuances, and identities not subordinate to the narrowness of life, mercantile ideology, linear and rigid as the interests of capital accumulation. Their most humane reasoning is a rehash of the most banal philanthropic vocabulary, spread in self-help seminars or business coaching. — Source, Granma

Elizabeth Eckford, age 15, pursued by a mob at Little Rock Central High School on the first day of the school year, September 4, 1957

So, that was a whopping 64 years ago, the year I was born.  We can go back farther:

Notice the smiles:

Sure, remarkable what the old deplorables did at the Capitol?

Well, let’s go back to 1919, when a white mob rioted through the streets of Washington, DC, while cops passively stood by and President Woodrow Wilson remained silent. A Black community in what’s now the Shaw neighborhood (Utah Avenue and Logan Circle) drove back the rampagers. Forty people were killed over a three day period. Who incited it? It took more than a 100 years for the esteemed Washington Post to admit to inciting and abetting it. The NAACP wrote a scorching letter to Wilson, the most racist president of the 20th century:

the shame put upon the country by the mobs, including United States soldiers, sailors, and marines, which have assaulted innocent and unoffending negroes in the national capital. Men in uniform have attacked negroes on the streets and pulled them from streetcars to beat them. Crowds are reported …to have directed attacks against any passing negro.

I don’t know. I hate to pull rank, but I am surrounded by people who, to put it lightly, have been so insulated, so cloistered, so self-isolating, that the things I have done on the streets, and the people I ran with and those I worked with and those I still work with, and the ground-truthing, and, well, I can’t say so much more here because I have a job that requires me to have a spotless record, of sorts — all of that from the heart and mind I have done, it goes unknown by the cloisrtered ones. I won’t even get into what expungement means to me.

Even bourgeois life, when it infiltrates the head of the proletariat, usually produces pathetic ideological monstrosities. It produces, for example, reverential victims whose libido expands by repeating ready-made phrases and prefabricated slogans to anesthetize one’s own reality in very diverse contexts and times. The victims learn the rules of the oppressor: Everything else before questioning their premises and conclusions. Everything before recognizing differences and diversities. All to incense their precepts and their egos infected with legal mediocrity. That is what the bourgeois palestras live on and their disciples learn a lot (knowingly or not) from that. They are armies of the ideology of the ruling class in daily action. Stuck here and there, infiltrated in the media and in the modes. They are all armed, with speaking swords, convinced that they must convince us, and impose on us their authoritarianism of egos and sell us their mediocrity made up as if it were a civilizing achievement. — Source

But I am hearing these bizarre things about the entire Capitol Siege, and alas, more censorship, more incarceration, more DA’s, more scrutiny, and, sure, we have a messed up country, but it has ALWAYS been that. The elites and the so-called liberal class have not been warriors of true egalitarianism and Marxist economy and organization. This here country is all about opportunities, and hoarders, and many of those “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” la-la land folk, well, they are dream hoarders. I guarantee many of those LA stars caught in the scandals involving paying bribes to get their vaunted children in the best schools are/were/will be Obama-Hillary-Biden backers.

The country was set up for a gilded age, followed by another and another gilded age. Now it’s Bitcoin Age, with the Digital Technologists and the Millions Working on Apps and AI and Robotics, well, they are right smack at the top of that next Fourth Industrial Revolution Gilded Few.

There is no housing guaranteed. There is no medical care guaranteed. Teeth rotting? Good luck, Charlie. Bosses strip away any semblance of our rights, and we can’t organize into collective bargaining units without $2000 an hour legal outfits swooping in with their Leer Jets to denigrate and dissolve solidarity through every trick of the book.

The son-in-law Jared Kushner’s old man, pardoned. For what? Here we have it, no, the chosen elite:

Jared’s father was actually prosecuted back in the early 2000s by Chris Christie, then the US Attorney for New Jersey.

While under investigation, Charles hatched a revenge plot against his brother-in-law, William Schulder, for cooperating with prosecutors in a tax evasion case against him. Charles hired a hooker to have sex with Schulder in a Jersey motel room, where a hidden camera was rolling. The elder Kushner then sent the footage to Schulder’s wife, Ester, who is Charles’ sister.

The revenge plot backfired … the Schulders gave the footage to prosecutors, who tracked down the prostitute. She eventually snitched on Charles.

Christie recalled Charles’ plot last year, calling it “one of the most loathsome, disgusting crimes” he ever prosecuted.

Look, there are people even on sites like DV who really believe there is a dialogue to be had with those Trumpies. This is the first sign of weakness and sickness. I live in a rural locale. I have lived in big cities but spent much time in flyover country, much time with ranchers, blue collars types, farmers, construction folk, pipe fitters, cement workers, and more. I guarantee, I have had hundreds of conversations with people who truly believe they are the great white race, that the great USA is a land of KKK milk and Slaver honey.

Flags that appeared at the MAGA-Rage: Trump flag, Gadsden Flag, American flag, Blue Lives Matter Flag, monarchist Iranian flag, Confederate flag, Israeli flag. But, that sorry-assed Robert Reich said Trump could thank Putin, even though not one flag of the Russian Federation was found. .

Primary Mockup

Old Mitch, in his youth:

Then there is the quintessential white hope, Trump, pushing off the Medal of Freedom to South African golfer Gary Player, who believed that South African blacks were/are not as evolved as his white ass: Here, endorsing apartheid in his 1966 book Grand Slam Golf:

I must say now, and clearly, that I am of the South Africa of Verwoerd and apartheid … a nation which … is the product of its instinct and ability to maintain civilised values and standards amongst the alien barbarians.

Barbarians, one and all. Think of all the people working 80 or 90 hours a week, for staffing agencies. Mostly women, pounded and pounding the keyboard, the spreadsheet, the phone, to get people jobs in the warehouse, or in those manufacturing dungeons, or in trucking, logistics et al business.

In a Time of Covid-19. Think of all the people trying to survive, waiting for the revenuers and the repo men and women and the eviction notices from those Black Lives Do Not Matter Blue Lives Matter deputies. Knocking on the trailer door at 10 pm. Serving papers after millions of papers served.

The cops, lording over the forced evictions, the cars and furniture and appliances hauled off. They, in their SWAT Team gear, fancy squad SUV’s, amazing, stoic and mean men and women, while the babies and children and old people in wheelchairs are carted off.

Scenes from the Nazi’s coming into France and overtaking homes, belongings.

Thuggery.

My aged friend, Barbara, 71, writes this to me today:

Meanwhile, Wall Street is booming, Bitcoin is soaring, and Big Tech is consolidating to fend against anti-trust actions.

Co-ordinated efforts? Seems to be the PUSH for the privatization of EVERYTHING as good soldiers for “democracy..  (little d)

All the world is a STAGE, Paul.  All this nonsense of defending anything is a ruse….
The media PLATFORMS have never made so much money all over the world…this is a gold rush…they won’t be stopping this anytime soon.

And then I just have to go back a few centuries, and remember the number 1.5 billion. 1,500,000,00 acres. Stolen. From Native Americans:

Their tenuous grasp of the subject is regrettable if unsurprising, given that the conquest of the continent is both essential to understanding the rise of the US and deplorable. Acre by acre, the dispossession of native peoples made the US a transcontinental power. To visualize this story, I created ‘The Invasion of America’, an interactive time-lapse map of the nearly 500 cessions that the US carved out of native lands on its westward march to the shores of the Pacific.

I guarantee those MAGA’s and Deplorables and their Backers are not shedding any tears for the First Nations? No tears for slaves or the legacy of generational trauma. Is it a brain wiring problem? Is it education? Family influences? Look at that map above.

I also guarantee those liberal right writers and prognosticators are not having real dialogues with redneck lumber guys and gals, redneck fishers, redneck construction gals and guys. Ex-military. Current cops.

Europe’s 20th century atrocities are easier for most people to envision than the dispossession of Native Americans. Stalin’s gulags destroyed millions of people in the 1930s and ’40s; Germany systematically murdered two-thirds of the continent’s Jews during the Second World War; Yugoslavia devolved into a bloodbath of so-called ‘ethnic cleansing’ in the early 1990s. Accounts of those episodes describe the victims as men, women and children. By contrast, the language used to chronicle the dispossession of native peoples – ‘Indian’, ‘chief’, ‘warrior’, ‘tribe’, ‘squaw’ (as native women used to be called) – conjures up crude stereotypes and clouds the mind, making it difficult to see the wars of extermination, forced marches and expulsions for what they were. The story, which used to be celebratory, is now more often tragic and sentimental, rooted in the belief that the dispossession of native peoples was unjust but inevitable. 
— Claudio Saunt, Richard B Russell Professor in American History, co-director of the Center for Virtual History, and associate director of the Institute of Native American Studies, all at the University of Georgia. His latest book is Unworthy Republic (2020). He lives in Athens, Georgia.

Now I can end with my own aggressive article on the Zoom Doom. My own, but what’s the point, uh, when my friends have their AA meetings on Zoom, and my workplace is Zooming, and the entire country’s transfixed by Zoom, Twitter, Fuck-You-Book, Tik-Tok, Instagram. Look, I have been teaching college since 1983, and I fought and I fought against correspondence schools, and fought and fought against on-line schools. Some tenured retired piece of human smear from UT-El Paso, living the life of luxury in Hawaii, and teaching the juicy literature courses. This was before Zoom doom. The illogic and inequity of that, well, it fell on deaf ears.

I have studied this up front and personal. Thousands of students I have taught, and many more thousands I have come across as an activist and big time (for a while) teach-in and conference and year-long theme organizer. I guarantee, every single hands-on activity, every single river clean up, every single face to face with a controversial author or thinker are the only way to learn for most people!. But I will give you this piece from the Wrong Kind of Green. The link and some quotes. I’ve done the research myself on this, however. I have attended dozens of talks and conferences and dog and pony shows with fellow faculty and administrators saying we have to treat students as customers. We have to go bog with big tech. We need more remote options. Less faculty, more people served over the WWW. I have been a union organizer of faculty (PT) and I have seen this stiff arm salute after stiff arm salute to the Brown Shirts of Tech. In the Union, and in the colleges and universities where I did my work. I am currently working (wage slave with four college degrees getting paid just above the minimum Portland, Oregon wage) with adults on training them and assisting them and coaching them and mentoring them on how to get, keep and move on with jobs. You know, adults with ID/DD. Oh, that’s about a 80 percent unemployment rate for these clients.

My job is to get them mainstreamed work, not in some sheltered workshop (Think Goodwill in the old days having people with Downs Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy and the like in a room sticking badges together for 25 cents an hour) or enclave (Think of a big office, and those same people listed above put in another room stuffing envelopes for, oh, half pay).

Lo and behold, I am going out to see my clients, to see their foster parents, their guardians, their parents and families. FACE to FACE. While the higher paid with Oregon-drenched benefits and health insurance health and human services and service coordinators all sit at home in front of their computers, demanding we all meet in a Zoom Doom room or Google hangout.

Now we have new shelters (not for the houseless) and new enclaves (not for the starving). Zooming and living 24/7 on the shit they pass off as journalism, news. One more stupid comment about Trump and about the yahoos storming the capitol, well, then, I guess I will go ballistic AGAINST the dimwit controlled Democrats.

Give these greenie weenies or rightwing liberals this news, and they try to attack (one Fuck-You-Book or the like, digitally). Imagine Noam Chomsky calling the Republican Party as the most dangerous organization on earth, and then you get this from the Dementia Patient, Bumbling Pathetic Biden and his More Pathetic Caregivers:

Biden’s principal concern yesterday was to uphold the stability of the Republican Party itself. “We need a Republican Party,” he said. “We need an opposition that is principled and strong.” He referred several times during his brief remarks to his “Republican friends,” and stressed that he would strive to “unify” Republicans and Democrats to accomplish “things we have to agree on and work together on.”

Within the framework of American bourgeois politics, Biden’s statement that the Democrats need a “strong” Republican Party means that the worst possible outcome would be a rout of the party of Trump, the incubator of fascism. Biden and the Democrats want to make sure that a political instrument essential to the defense of ruling class interests is not shattered by the at least temporary failure of the coup.

As for a future Biden administration, it will be a right-wing regime viciously hostile to the working class. Biden’s effort to strengthen the Republican Party is aimed at marginalizing and attacking the left. It is combined with the twin pillars of Democratic Party politics, the anti-Russia narrative of the military and intelligence agencies and the promotion of racialist conflict. The policy of a Democratic-run government will create the best conditions for the further growth of the far-right.

World Socialist Website, another one of thousands of alternative being killed by Google Gulag.

Now, of course I am trauma informed, caring, a caregiver for people with any number of mental, physical, psychological challenges. But Biden is not my client or patient. Nor is the psychopath Trump who also has diagnosable mental illnesses. And the millions of others in the billionaire, millionaire, celebrity, political class. Yes, there are millions of elites and those in power and the cops and pigs of security and the soldiers and their generals with diagnosable mental and psychological illnesses, BUT I AM NOT THEIR CAREGIVER! So my attacks on the presidents’ mental acumen or psychological issues and their proclivity to sexual assault and misogamy, well, they might be from their DNA strains and family upbringing, but again, I AM NOT THEIR COUNSEOLR. So let me rail!

More mental illness on the horizon, big time! All schools closed. And this is it for USA, for the globe, now — all mothed-balled at home, trembling like Anne Frank, but she faced death squads of Nazi’s, and they, us, now we are hiding away from the flu, the Covid-19, but really hiding away from people, from messy and loud and confronting people! That is what is happening in colleges of all places. Doom Zoom Rooms. And most students are okay with it, because 18-and-20-year-olds have been brought up with Chrome Books and all that anal probe technology.

I’ll pull rank — I have taught for centuries, been an activist for centuries and still have been put into a place where I too have had to learn the totalitarian tools of the Google and Gates Brownshirts. I guarantee, kind folks, I am not some Luddite, and alas, I guarantee, the ranch has been sold down the river. That ranch being clear thinking, aggressive antigovernmental and anti-corporation thinking, great people skills, community-based work and education. That ranch has been sold down that old river of the Military-AI-Digital-Surveillance-Big Biz-Big Media-Big Ed-Big/Rotten/Monopoly INDUSTRIAL complex.

Shift those narratives, those perspectives, those ideas, and cull history, dissuade dissidence, radical thinking, outside-the-box questioning, and you get a shifting baseline disorder. And Collective Stockholm Syndrome. Collective nanosecond by nanosecond general anxiety disorder. That is what the masters and their brownshirts and Gestapo and SS do to generation after generation.

And I am composing this on a laptop. And it’s shit or shite. Slower and slower everyday. Lenovo . . . Core i5.Super model, FIVE years ago. This is the masterplan — get us all dependent on our diapers, hole us up, get the middle managers at home and ordering the rest of us around with their Zoom Doom triple-chin glee. Order classes delivered on-line, order self-help coaches to deliver drivel on-line, order dildos on-line with on-line video instructions. Get those Doritos and Dramamine from Bezos and Walton and Company. They (USPS, Fed-Ex and UPS) do not even knock on your door for deliveries. They deliver all that shit/shite by leaving the shit/shite outside.

Now, a million lifetimes of people looking at what sanitoria do to the human and community psyche, what orphanages do to developing brains, what isolation does, what solitary confinement does, prisons, etc., and what the typical older or aging shut-in faces. Millions of lifetime hours researching what is good for little Johnny and little Juanita and old Mabel and old Chung. Millions and millions of white papers and theses and journal articles on why isolation is bad on the body, brain and body politic.

Zoom Doom. I am slated to be part of an Oregon “legacy author” reading, and that means I have to turn in a recording of me talking about me, talking about the influence of Oregon’s landscape on me, and then they say “read for about 5 minutes from your most recent work.” FIVE FUCKING minutes of the actual writing And, the library where I send this recording to can edit it. Hmm, what do they not want in and what do they want out . . . what is or is not acceptable to their patrons?

Death by a million edits, a million censorings, a trillion self-censorings JUST to be heard or paid or to move on. Faustian bargains every three steps in our lives, by the hundreds, daily for some of us.

Vaccine passport? Of course. I had one when I was six months old when we went from LA to the Azores. I had one in France, Germany in the 1960s, I had them when I worked in the prisons as a teacher. I have had to prove my negative TB results working with adults in a memory care facility and with adults with ID/DD. I have had to get my tetanus shots and prove it. All those tropical disease vaccinations, yep, proof to work in Guatemala and Vietnam.

So, yes, my military days, proof of vaccinations. Forced vaccinations. SARS-CoV2,3,18,222 will be the same.

And these adults, holed up at home, in front of their newer and newer laptops, triple screens, super printers, amazing mic and video cams, newer and newer software, more and more Brownshirt Techies having control of more and more of our lives.

So, yes, we should QUESTION it all. To find some sort of realized and studied truths. Today’s solutions are tomorrow’s problems. But the rightwing liberals want compliant people, virtual signaling, no questioning the narrative, and now there are thousands of narratives being developed by the Brownshirts!

Virtual learning is training affluent students for a life of self-directed work at home. It is training low-income students for a life of no work at all. Alex Gutentag

Long-distance learning

Here’s Alex’s last paragraph. Yes, he did a good job, but alas, schools need massive reforming, revamping, rethinking, and that takes our collective effort. There are hundreds of ways to teach, and there are many many youth being left behind, dropped, scolded for their actions, and yes, we have hundreds of millions of people going into schools who have multiple chronic illnesses, many mental challenges, psychological challenges, and yes, each child is a product of what they eat, drink, see, watch, read, do, think, believe, hear, see, smell, touch, create, imagine, dream, and breathe. And all that in terms of what they DO NOT eat, drink, see . . . . etc.

If a society wants to put any hundreds and hundreds of groups, demographics, people in this or that category on the chopping block 100 million, 200 million?), then that’s what you get in 1800’s slavery days, 1800’s kill all Indians days, and “Every tenth Indian can be kept alive” Teddy Roosevelt days, and you get the racist supremacist nature of Capitalism then, right at the start, when the Columbus evil hit those island shores, onward, including just back a few decades back, last year and now.

Sacrifice Zones are where those of us in the 80 Percent who are the walking and wounded are kept because of those EZ’s — economic zones. Exclusive partnerships with the devils of finance with the devils of industry with the devils of Brownshirts Tech and the devils in government, mostly politicians and the whores of K-Street.

Schools are necessary for communal and individual well-being—they are just as essential as health care. In their education children do not only learn content; they also learn by example and through experience. It is our collective task to consider what message continued policies of school closure and austerity send to the younger generation. They will not forget it if we fail to develop alternatives. — AG

"Greater income inequality, increased unemployment, growing dependence on government, and more mass migrations are a few of the most pressing problems that failing to train the next generation of workers for the digitally driven economy will bring." [page 3]

Paul Kirk Haeder has covered police, environment, planning and zoning, county and city politics, as well as working in true small town/ community journalism in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Mexico and beyond. He’s worked in prisons, gang-influenced programs, universities, colleges, alternative high schools, language schools, and PK12 districts. He organized part-time faulty. His book, Reimagining Sanity: Voices Beyond the Echo Chamber (2016), looks at 10 years of his writing at Dissident Voice. Read his musings at LA Progressive. He blogs from Waldport, Oregon. Read his short story collection, Wide Open Eyes: Surfacing from Vietnam now out, published by Cirque JournalRead other articles by Paul, or visit Paul’s website.

This article was posted on Sunday, January 10th, 2021 at 8:15am and is filed under ActivismAnti-slaveryClassismCultureDonald TrumpGunsOpinionOriginal PeoplesPrejudiceProtestsRacism.


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