!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN"> Rolla Peace Newsletter, July 21, 2015

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Rolla Peace News

July 21, 2015


Dear Friends:

          In this newsletter is:

3. THE MISFIT MATHEMATICIAN (Tom's column, http://tomsager.org)
          a) Still More On War and the Climate
          b) Tim DeChristopher On Protest
          c) On Track For Another Record-Breaking Year



We vigil for peace in front of the Rolla Post Office THIS THURSDAY, JULY 23, 2015, (and all subsequent Thursdays until peace is established) from Noon to 1:00 PM. Please try to join us. The temperature is predicted to be in the 80s. If you do not feel comfortable standing with us in front of the Post Office, please consider driving by and showing your support for our message by honking your horn and flashing a peace sign.


Retired General Wesley Clark advocates domestic “internment camps” for “radicalized” or “disloyal” Americans. The last time this happened was during World War II, when thousands of Japanese-Americans were herded into camps for no other reason than their racial heritage. Clark has a reputation as a relative progressive, but in the video included in this article, he comes off as somewhat to the right of John McCain.

Who gets to decide who is “radicalized” or “disloyal”? And what are the criteria for such a classification? I have some prime candidates for such internment: The heads of corporations and the politicians who are destroying our democracy and our country for the sake of profit and personal power. The global elite have no loyalty to any country, and will do anything, no matter how radical, to attain their ends.

I found it interesting that the interviewer on this MSNBC video clip didn't even look shocked at what was coming out of Clark's mouth. Perhaps this is just a warning to those of us who don't agree with our government's policy of perpetual war. Think it couldn't happen here and now? Don't bet on it!

3. THE MISFIT MATHEMATICIAN (Tom's column, http://tomsager.org)
          a) Still More On War and the Climate
          b) Tim DeChristopher On Protest
          c) On Track For Another Record-Breaking Year


The last couple of weeks I pointed out how more and more people are beginning to draw the connection between war and climate change. Two weeks ago I mentioned Pope Francis's encyclical, Laudato Si. Last week it was near-term human extinction guru, Guy McPherson. I also pointed out last week how they are simply catching up to Veterans for Peace which connected the dots years ago.

This week one of my favorite anti-war activists, Kathy Kelly, devotes her latest article to connecting the dots, writing: “Earth's military crisis, its climate crisis, and the paralyzing economic inequalities that burden impoverished people are linked.” Kathy believes “that ‘low carbon’ and ‘no carbon’ energy and energy efficiency should be paid for by abolishing war.” Right On, Kathy! The US Military is almost certainly both the world's largest single user of fossil fuels and the largest creator of greenhouse gases.

I am forever thankful to Kathy Kelly for taking me to Iraq in 1999 and opening my eyes to the atrocities my government had been committing (and still commits) against the Iraqi people.


While Bernie Sanders has a lot going for him, he certainly has his blind spots. (Well, don't we all?) I pointed out previously that while he is very strong on climate justice and economic justice, he is at best lukewarm when it comes to ending war and militarism and has done practically nothing about achieving any measure of justice for Palestine.

Tim DeChristopher discusses another of Bernie's blind spots, Racism. Bernie apparently feels that our problems of racism are institutional and can be solved through institutional changes. Those who have experienced racism personally, don't necessarily see it that way. In a confrontation at a Town Hall Meeting with the women of Black Lives Matter, Bernie comes across cold and lacking in compassion, refusing to speak the name of Sandra Bland who was recently murdered while in police custody in Texas for alleged failure to signal before changing lanes.

I'm hoping to see a lot more protests, especially at events involving political candidates. There is so much to protest about; and as DeChristopher notes, “Protests are always criticized as being at the wrong time because those who need to protest are never the people writing the agenda. Thatís the value of protest.”

I'm hoping that next time Bernie will respond more appropriately to protests. I'm still supporting him.

In my opinion, Tim DeChristopher has done more to galvanize climate activists than all the climate scientists in the world. Tim's protest against oil and gas leases on federal land was so simple, effective and creative: Bid on the leases. Never mind that he raised the money to pay for the leases he bid successfully on; never mind that the auctions were found to be illegal; he was sentenced to two years in federal prison for “disrupting” the process of hastening planetary destruction by enabling the fossil-fuel industry to profit off of federal lands.

I confess: I love non-violent protests, even when I don't agree with the message protesters are conveying. So much has been accomplished through (mostly) non-violent protests — most notably, the gains in Civil Rights of the 1960's and bringing the War Against Vietnam to an end. And so much is lost when people stop protesting non-violently — for example, the resurgence of racism and militarism of the last few decades. The act of non-violent protest is healthy — regardless of the message. This is why regressive forces will work so hard to violently crush non-violent movements and their friends in the mass media will waste no effort in denigrating non-violent activism.


With 2015 only half over, it seems likely to surpass 2014 (itself a record-breaker) as the hottest year in recorded history. Climatewise, the records continue to fall as fast as they are set. It's rare to see the same record broken in two consecutive years; but these are not normal times. As Bob Dylan sang, The Times They Are A-Changin'. So is our climate.


Rolla Peace News is distributed by email once a week on Tuesday evenings (except on rare occasions) and is posted on the web at http://tomsager.org (click on Grassroots Rolla: top of rightmost column).

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Wage peace,

helenm (at) fidnet.com