An uneven sense of grief.

updated: Mon 1 Feb 2010 (see article and links to tributes)

I’ve been so busy lately that I’ve not noticed until today (Saturday 30th January 2010)  that Howard Zinn has passed away a few days ago, Wednesday 27th January. A good man has left this earth. May Allah SWT have mercy on his soul.

I got to know of Howard Zinn (and Domocracy Now, DN, for that matter – the two are intertwined in my mind) around the time the ZUSUK’s killers rammed their way into Iraq – Yet another Occidental orgy of slaughter they consciously decided upon, slaughtering yet more innocent and fundamentally good people.

I was consumed with a feverish desire to know what has happening in Iraq and spent something like 5 hours a day (often more)  reading all sorts of news reports and commentray. Eventually I came across links to Howard Zinn and some  other prominent anti-warites. I came to really admire Howard Zinn – as much as one can from infront of a computer screen . My feelings of liking towards him were helped largely from speeches like this that he gave at Madison…

Howard Zinn – The Uses of History and War on Terrorism 1of2 (40m 18s)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_Fc5W8amYM

Howard Zinn – The Uses of History and War on Terrorism 2of2 (14m 40s)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVwB8cS19KM

and I got to like DN too. DN is a shift towards my ideas as to what a News Organisation should be about.

Howard was a mainstream critic of rapacious neoimperial globalisation. The time he was afforded by the media (such as Democracy Now) was what one may expect for mainstream critic; occasional appearances on this ‘fringe’ (i.e. non-populist) media. That’s not being unkind to Howard Zinn or DN, but is merely a comment on the condition of global (read populist) media and its critics. The conventional is overpowering.

(Media and critic) Conspiracy? I don’t think so. At least not here, at this level. If one is only ever aware of blue light, then everything will appear as shades of blue. In such an environment there are actually other wavelengths but they are hidden. If the blue receptive eyes did ever happen to glance at these other colours, there simply isn’t the ability to fathom what it was that they are looking it. After a while, those eyes will flick back to the shades of blues of the world reassuringly familiar. And so it is with the media and the popular critics. That nobody in a position of power or influence has realised the peoples tendancy to want to coalesce to the percieved conformity or that these people haven’t exploited it for their own financial and philosophical benefit is laughable.  

Again don’t get me wrong, I respect DN and I respected HZ; For within the realm of conformity, life is often sweeter in the centre than at the fringe. The reason they are on the fringe is I’d say because their sence of morality/justice/humanity isn’t perverted like those in the centre populate by those for example killed 1,300,000+ Iraqi’s, eventually adopting the hideous lie that the Iraqi’s are thankful for it.

My assessment of the qualifications necessary to manage to appear on fringe media is that: the ceiling of ones criticism must end with the bankers, the global capitalists. There can not be any higher level of denouncement or exposee. Only the bankers can be the point source of evil in this world. Not Zionism*, not Cabalists, not Freemasonry, not the Jesuits nor the Illuminati, and of course ultimatley not Satanism. These secret societies do exist and do pull rank on ‘the bankers’ but definately not in the this barren secular world bruitalising us to accepts it’s senseless ways.

Zinn wasn’t into 9-11 conspiracy (a reasonably worthy debate in the modern era has sprung up on Craig Murray’s site: The 9/11 Post). I think accusation of ‘gatekeeperism’ were probably levvied at him, as they were about Chomsky when he stupidly said at Q&A (I think in Ireland?) something like ‘who cares’ or ‘what does it matter’ about who did 9-11. That was just a lapse of idiocy rather than gatekeeperism. I recently re-viewd an interview with Chomsky and the jolly Francine Stock of BBC Newsnight fame and my admiration for him identifying that self censoring journalists believed in what they said otherwise they wouldn’t be sitting where they were sitting.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=676452061991429040

This point has been mentioned by others before but it really hit home how Chomsky really got to the point of what the global corporate media is all about, it’s as if Chomsky was a scanner [ http://www.vureel.com/video/4338/Scanners-81 ] and scanned what Andrew Marr was all about but Marr was either in denial or just too dumb to think about it and wonder if it was true or not.

The point that doesn’t get talked about is surely this applies to Chomsky himself?

The other day, the very respected Zahir Ebrahim of http://humanbeingsfirst.org/ gave a critique of someone posted about recently – Dr Chandra Muzaffar [ see: https://lwtc247.wordpress.com/2010/01/26/a-beautiful-mind-dr-chandra-muzaffar/ ] Zahir misrepresented my admiration for Dr Chandra to the point that he seemed to think I was a doting disciple. I’m not. I respect him for him speaking out and it matter not whether other do it better or that they may supposedly earn a living from it. BUT I did get his point that it’s still permitted dissent – Dr Chandra, Howard Zinn, Chonksy, Naomi Klein, George Galloway.  My position is in fact beyond theirs. As I’ve said they are mainstream – to them, “it’s the bankers stupid” others like myself are obviously racists,  anti-semitics, and conspiraloon nutters. I’ll never break into the fringe of acceptable dissidence, I don’t think I want to.  I got laughed at not so long ago by someone who projects himself to be an intellectual. the reason he laughed? Becuase he discivered I believed in God. But I still respect the Howard Zinns of this world because they do carry and important message. The fist step of a thousands miles for the terrible comatose middle class who “beliefs of non-belief”, bar capitalism, sickens me.

I respect Media Lens but disagree in their stance on anthropogenic global warming, as I don’t accept Dr. Chandra’s stance on it as I don’t agree with Zinn’s stance on 9-11. While I’m on AGW, these people have nrtunately conflated pollution with environmental rape with CO2. Given their obvious distaste (putting it mildy) for the global corporations, I can understand why.

In this life almost everyone we come across is gonna believe in something that’s the near opposite of our stance. That doesn’t \negate the respect one can have for men of honour and morality.

Zinn was such a man who believed passionately about the lets say conventional viewpoint. He criticised the powers that be while Mr and mrs Joe bloggs, idiots by another name, complacent to crimes against humanity sat on their chairs, shruggesd their shoulders and tricked themselves into believing they can vote it out in x years time, thinking about their pension schemes in Haliburton, Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, BAE, etc. Fools. Self-intoxicated accomplaces to mass global tryanny and death.

Howard Zinn you will be missed.

right now I don’t really care about the rubbish spelling, typos or grammatical mistakes. I’m tired. I need to go to bed. This world continues to suck big time! I don’t care if I’m not communicating this post out in a literarly purists fancy.

I feel we should forge alliances – or at least give some support to at least the fringe. The exo fringe is uttterly divided and too busy squabbling if it’s the Zionists, illuminati, Jewsuits, Freemasons behind it all, while – and I’m repeating this for good reason – SATAN play alss sides and does whatever it takes to pull you from God. WHATEVER IT TAKES.

Zahir, If you’re reading this, I’m confident you will understand it and not take any offence. I’ll try and reply to your e-mails on the previous thread time permitting. I am very short on time right now. 20 stories a day go whizzing past my eyes which infuriate me and make me feel like I must reveal it for the rubbish it is, but I am v.v.v.v.tired and just as busy. Blogging (I’m exo-fringe) is achieving noting. Nobody other than those beyond the fringe are listening. Nobody that can make any difference really cares. The critical mass of people to overthrow this repulsive global guff will not be reached.

Dear Howard, I will miss you.

* I am discussing Zionism in the sence that I can come to conclude is actually quite ancient an dNOT simply a late 19th century call for Jewish nationalism. That of the perversion of God’s covenant to those that believe in him which morphs into a form that the convenant comes with no conditions. From Cane Able, the Inversion of the sacrifice of Ishak and Ismail, Jacob(Yacoob), the sale of Yusrf(Joseph) to the Egyptians, The rebellion of the the Hebrews against Haroun(Arron) and Musa(Moses) The defiance of Gods wisdom to Samuel for the people not to have a King. The slurrs against Sulaiman(soloman) as a user of black magic. The plots of Jeroboham, The idoloty of Ahab and Jezebel and their prophet killing, the Pharisees slandering the virgin Mary, the killing of Jesus(Isa) and the talmudic depiction of him waste high in boiling human excriment in Hell and every similar thing that has transpired since not least from the white Euro Jews in deriliction whose perversion of the covenant took on much greater dimensions.

 

A friend passed this to me today, and other friends all thought it was great:

 

American historian, playwright and social activist Howard Zinn died January 27, 2010, aged 87. His light will shine bright into the far off future. A new socially just world will owe a great debt to Howard and others like him who gave so much of themselves for us. — ZNet Staff 

Below is an excerpt from his recent book A Power Governments Cannot Suppress published by City Lights Books, www.citylights.com.  At the bottom of this commentary are links to various ZNet obituaries remembering Howard.

A Marvelous Victory
– By Howard Zinn

In this world of war and injustice, how does a person manage to stay socially engaged, committed to the struggle, and remain healthy without burning out or becoming resigned or cynical?

I am totally confident not that the world will get better, but that we should not give up the game before all the cards have been played. The metaphor is deliberate; life is a gamble. Not to play is to foreclose any chance of winning. To play, to act, is to create at least a possibility of changing the world.

There is a tendency to think that what we see in the present moment will continue. We forget how often we have been astonished by the sudden crumbling of institutions, by extraordinary changes in people’s thoughts, by unexpected eruptions of rebellion against tyrannies, by the quick collapse of systems of power that seemed invincible.

What leaps out from the history of the past hundred years is its utter unpredictability. A revolution to overthrow the czar of Russia in that most sluggish of semi feudal empires not only startled the most advanced imperial powers but took Lenin himself by surprise and sent him rushing by train to Petrograd. Who would have predicted the bizarre shifts of World War II-the Nazi-Soviet pact (those embarrassing photos of von Ribbentrop and Molotov shaking hands), and the German army rolling through Russia, apparently invincible, causing colossal casualties, being turned back at the gates of Leningrad, on the western edge of Moscow, in the streets of Stalingrad, followed by the defeat of the German army, with Hitler huddled in his Berlin bunker, waiting to die?

And then the postwar world, taking a shape no one could have drawn in advance: The Chinese Communist revolution, the tumultuous and violent Cultural Revolution, and then another turnabout, with post-Mao China renouncing its most fervently held ideas and institutions, making overtures to the West, cuddling up to capitalist enterprise, perplexing everyone.

No one foresaw the disintegration of the old Western empires happening so quickly after the war, or the odd array of societies that would be created in the newly independent nations, from the benign village socialism of Nyerere’s Tanzania to the madness of Idi Amin’s adjacent Uganda. Spain became an astonishment. I recall a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade telling me that he could not imagine Spanish Fascism being overthrown without another bloody war. But after Franco was gone, a parliamentary democracy came into being, open to Socialists, Communists, anarchists, everyone.

The end of World War II left two superpowers with their respective spheres of influence and control, vying for military and political power. Yet they were unable to control events, even in those parts of the world considered to be their respective spheres of influence. The failure of the Soviet Union to have its way in Afghanistan, its decision to withdraw after almost a decade of ugly intervention, was the most striking evidence that even the possession of thermonuclear  weapons does not guarantee domination over a determined population.

The United States has faced the same reality. It waged a full-scale war in Indochina, conducting the most brutal bombardment of a tiny peninsula in world history, and yet was forced to withdraw. In the headlines every day we see other instances of the failure of the presumably powerful over the presumably powerless, as in Bolivia and Brazil, where grassroots movements of workers and the poor have elected new presidents pledged to fight destructive corporate power.

Looking at this catalogue of huge surprises, it’s clear that the struggle for justice should never be abandoned because of the apparent overwhelming power of those who have the guns and the money and who seem invincible in their determination to hold on to it. That apparent power has, again and again, proved vulnerable to human qualities less measurable than bombs and dollars: moral fervor, determination, unity, organization, sacrifice, wit, ingenuity, courage, patience-whether by blacks in Alabama and South Africa, peasants in El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Vietnam, or workers and intellectuals in Poland, Hungary, and the Soviet Union itself. No cold calculation of the balance of power need deter people who are persuaded that their cause is just.

I have tried hard to match my friends in their pessimism about the world (is it just my friends?), but I keep encountering people who, in spite of all the evidence of terrible things happening everywhere, give me hope. Wherever I go, I find such people, especially young people, in whom the future rests. And beyond the handful of activists there seem to be hundreds, thousands, more who are open to unorthodox ideas. But they tend not to know of one  another’s existence, and so, while they persist, they do so with the desperate patience of Sisyphus endlessly pushing the boulder up the mountain. I try to tell each group that they are not alone, and that the very people who are disheartened by the absence of a national movement are themselves proof of the potential for such a movement.

Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment (beware of such moments!) but as an endless succession of surprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society. We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can quietly become a power no government can suppress, a power that can transform the world.

Even when we don’t “win,” there is fun and fulfillment in the fact that we have been involved, with other good people, in something worthwhile. We need hope. An optimist isn’t necessarily a blithe, slightly sappy whistler in the dark of our time. To be hopeful in bad times is not being foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of competition and cruelty but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness.

What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places-and there are so many-where people have behaved magnificently, it energizes us to act, and raises at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction. And if we do act, in however small a way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.

Tributes:

Howard Zinn
http://www.democracynow.org/tags/howard_zinn
Howard Zinn (1922-2010): A Tribute to the Legendary Historian with Noam Chomsky, Alice Walker, Naomi Klein and Anthony Arnove  http://www.democracynow.org/2010/1/28/howard_zinn_1922_2010_a_tribute

———–

Howard Zinn: A Public Intellectual Who Mattered‎  http://www.truthout.org/howard-zinn-a-public-intellectual-who-mattered56463

———-
The Real News Network
http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=33&Itemid=74&jumival=247
————

Howard Zinn, Historian who Challenged Status Quo, Dies at 87
By: Mark Feeney
http://iraqwar.mirror-world.ru/article/216547

———–

A Life Well Lived: Remembering Howard Zinn. People’s Historian – by Raymond Lotta   http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=17294

———–

————————–

I think I’ve just found Howards last public article. Strangely it was about Haiti… Extract: from http://www.truthout.org/howard-zinn-the-people-speak-supreme-court-and-haiti56402

Howard Zinn on “The People Speak,” the Supreme Court and Haiti

Tuesday 26 January 2010

by: Joan Brunwasser  |  OpEdNews

Joan Brunwasser: Howard Zinn is a historian, author, social activist, and American icon. His book “A People’s History of the United States” has sold over two million copies. Welcome back to OpEdNews, Howard. The dust has had a chance to settle a bit since last month’s airing of your documentary “The People Speak.” What kind of feedback have you gotten so far?

Howard Zinn: We’ve received lots of nice messages on “The People Speak.” The History Channel tells us that eight million people have seen part or all of the film, and two million on the first night it was shown (apparently they have no way of telling if a viewer cuts out on the program). It will be on the History Channel again February 22nd and March 1st.


 

 

 

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5 Responses to “An uneven sense of grief.”


  1. 1 Project Humanbeingsfirst.org January 31, 2010 at 11:06 pm

    “Dear Howard, I will miss you.” — well said my friend.

    “Zahir misrepresented my admiration for Dr Chandra to the point that he seemed to think I was a doting disciple.” — That’s your inadvertent perception, and thank you for clarification. My response-comments were not about you, but what seems a bizzare echoing of empire’s message while appearing to critique its acts. This is a common-problem in dissent, which leads me to think that it is either controlled, manufactured, or highly circumspect dissent.

    Thanks for your good postings.

    All the best,

    Zahir Ebrahim
    Project Humanbeingsfirst.org

  2. 2 lwtc247 February 1, 2010 at 1:56 am

    I actually agreed with a lot of all you said, as i do here. The critique of Dr.C does rub off on me, in an informative sense as well as a critical sense, intended or not, due to me expressing my admiration for his mind, but eitherway, I can’t take it personally as it’s quite clear you are not being personal, rather you are being helpful. I appreciate it. Your critique of anything here is most welcome. The world needs more of it.

    “a common-problem in dissent, which leads me to think that it is either controlled, manufactured, or highly circumspect dissent. This is an opinion held by many outside of conformity. I suggested (via the Chomsky quote) that Dr C and Zinn are their own captors/dissent-regulators, as Chomsky himself is. Surely we all are. And if we are not, can we achieve anything?

    I know of a few people reluctant to express their true feelings for fear of the reprocussions, however I think history shows it’s better to speak out than remain quiet.

    Is it better to followe permitted/mild dissent then never to have followed it at all?

    I waver in my concludions to that question. Certainly with this current crop of crooks and crims sitting on various thrones, or presidential palaces and parliaments while 1/6 the planet goes hungry each day deserves total rejection. But doesn’t that render oneself powerless?

    P.S. I was so tired I didn’t explain the title. The grief is uneven as tens of thousands of Hatians have died recently yet the a more pronounced sense of grief for Zinn. why just becasuse I have personal experience of ‘seeing’ and ‘listening’ to Zinn (I’ve not bought his book, peoples hitsory, yet) is my grief uneven. I guess others can relate to this.

  3. 3 Project Humanbeingsfirst.org February 1, 2010 at 4:37 pm

    “Is it better to follow permitted/mild dissent then never to have followed it at all?” — to help you answer this question for yourself, here is an excerpt:


    Now, if Rep. Lucco of the Illinois legislature in 1978 can endeavor to “collate what you are talking about — 1912 — with 1978”, surely a sensibly learned person today might try to collate the same to 2008? How might one forensically bring to bear all such historical knowledge, including revelations by Norman Dodd, on the present financial crisis and the role of the Federal Reserve System? How does that relate to the blatantly undisguised drive for world government today? How does that relate to 911? But no! Not the Federal Reserve System Chairman, nor any of the Nobel Prize winning economists waxing more economics gibberish, will go there! [a7]

    And forget about the mainstream presses, erudite pundits, and even lauded dissent-space politicians like Ron Paul, [a8] and intellectuals like Noam Chomsky [a9] [a10] and Howard Zinn [a11] – forever only rehearsing the crimes of the “rogue state” and 911 its “blowback” – doing so either. Their laudable emphasis on the facts that are visible like the American F16s and Apache Helicopters bombing civilians, or the crash of the stock market as a result of casino capitalism, and lamentable silence on the ones which are not readily visible like that which remains shrouded in conspiratorial secrecy for an overarching agenda and must be forensically uncovered from rational thinking and analysis, or official narratives that are required to be kept intact, only ends up circuitously leading their own fawning flock, amidst great applause, to the pastures dutifully bounded by the same fences as the mainstream scholars! [a12] [a13] Their intellectualism, apparently, only extends to the government mandated axioms of “Bin Laden” and “Al-Qaeeda”, which are most obligingly, implicitly retained by them in their very learned dissenting discourses that valiantly document and courageously standup to the crimes of their own nation. [a14] [a15] And these intellectual are this scribe’s own respected teachers! [a16]

    Perhaps all these gadfly historians and men and women of letters who mainly delight in rehashing histories which are already faits accomplis, and in waxing moralizing sermons on being the privileged minority to whom “Western democracy provides the leisure, the facilities, and the training to seek the truth lying hidden behind the veil of distortion and misrepresentation, … through which the events of current history are presented to us”, [a17] be graciously reminded of George Bernard Shaw’s famous maxim “We are made wise not by the recollections of our past, but by the responsibility for our future”.

    http://print-humanbeingsfirst.blogspot.com/2008/11/monetary-conspiracy-world-government.html

    Especially see footnotes a10, a11, and a13

    And since you are apparently also a Muslim, to help explore the same question from Islam’s perspective, please see Surah Asr, Chapter 104 of the Qur’an, especially: “wa twa so bil haq”.

    Is there a partial “haq”? Is there a partial truth? And how does that play in a modernity that is driven entirely by Hegelian Dialectic, by Edward Bernays’ Public Relations, one in which “deception is a state of mind and the mind of the state”, and in which all wars are waged “by way of deception” according to well layed out political theories and political philosophies which span the gamut of Machiavelli to Leo Strauss?

    What does “partial dissent” mean in such a world? Other than being gullibly deceived to assuage the conscience of the consionable, to put them on a treadmill that goes nowhere in a hurry?

    To penetrate even deeper into the diabolical imperial minds and the “cognitive infiltration” they deem necessary in order to dilute dissent into vacuous “diversity” so that it never gains meaningful traction, or in Bush’s words remains a “focus group”, also see this paper out of Harvard by Cass R. Sunstein: “Conspiracy Theories”

    http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1084585

    Under such confabulations and successive “hegelian mind fcks”, what is “permitted/mild dissent” ?

    Good luck in your search.

    Zahir Ebrahim
    Project Humanbeingsfirst.org

  4. 4 Project Humanbeingsfirst.org February 1, 2010 at 4:38 pm

    correction: Surah Asr is Chapter 103, not chapter 104.

  5. 5 Project Humanbeingsfirst.org February 1, 2010 at 11:13 pm

    Because the topic of this post is Howard Zinn, one would be gravely remis if one didn’t pay compliment and homage to Howard Zinn when he was at his best.

    Howard was my teacher, and even when I critiqued him, as in one of the footnotes above, his teachings were also commonsensical, and at times profound. One of his best repartees to the war on terror to Iraq is in the first chapter of my book:

    “I even ponder that my mentor Howard Zinn is also not living in the twilight zone when he suggests that imagine for a moment that you could end all the world’s injustices and rid it of all terrorists for all future time by dropping one big bomb even if it kills a 100,000 children in collateral damage, wouldn’t you do it? Remember this is peace for all eternity at this small price. Come on, wouldn’t you do it? Okay now imagine that these were 100,000 American children. Would you still do it?”

    Here are two videos of Howard Zinn at his best, one on human nature, one on the three “holy” wars:

    Because of my immense respect for Professor Zinn, was also the immense disappointment – as expressed in footnote [a11] in the document noted in the previous comment.

    Overall, in the balance, Howard Zinn was an immensely positive influence on many peoples, including yours truly. One of these days, when the millions dead, and to be dead, in the present perpetual global war will stop occupying my mind, I’ll write an homage piece to Howard Zinn. He would surely approve of this deferment.

    Zahir Ebrahim
    Project Humanbeingsfirst.org


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