12.21.2016 Daily Links

          BREAKING NEWS RIGHT NOW          

From the redoubtable compilers and editors at Common Dreams a must-read briefing for scrappy scribes and stalwart citizens who want to remain in the know about pharmaceutical racketeering and corruption, in this case especially in relation to the sale of opiates, in this account as regards the recent two part series in the Charleston Gazette about the nearly one billion dose influx of painkillers into the State even as overdoses and attendant deaths spiraled upward, an eventuality that belies much of the bullshit of the so-called ‘war on drugs’ at the same time that it calls into question the notions of ‘expert’ recommendations about ‘medicine’ as an alternative to the proven effective and safe self-deployment of such remedial herbs as marijuana.

                    This Day in History                  

In general, today marks the solstice, the furthest extent of light in the Southern Hemisphere and of the dark in more Northern climes, while Plymouth, Massachusetts commemorates Forefather Day; in Rome, as restiveness and even rebellion threatened a thousand nine hundred and forty-seven years ago, the fourth emperor in a year, Vespasian, who had commanded the crushing of the Great Jewish Revolt, assumed command; a mere three years into the future, in 72, the author of the Gospel According to Thomas, died at the hands of persecutors; eight hundred ninety-eight years ahead of today, the baby boy first cried out who would rise as the martyr and leader of the British Church, Thomas Becket; a hundred nineteen years past that conjunction, in 1237, Mongol fighters under Batu Khan, having used catapults to reduce the city’s fortifications, sacked the ancient Rus city of Ryazan and executed almost everyone in it; MORE HERE

                A Thought for the Day                

money international yuan china trade tppBalancing the more or less absolute necessity, on the one hand, of having income that exceeds outgo, so as to avoid upkeep that leads to downfall, with the less crucial but nonetheless salubrious longing, on the other hand, to follow one’s most passionate inclinations, remains a central paradox of the creative existence, a conundrum that dissipates quickly enough in a social democratic environment but amplifies to such an extent where ‘bourgeois towns’ are the norm that only those to the manor born or otherwise of ‘independent means’ or endowed with either ineffable genius or irresistible, even psychotic, persistence have the vaguest prayer to produce the work that their imaginations and cultural capacities would permit in more clement social contexts, altogether at once a recommendation of socialist social relations and a loss of inventive output of immeasurable extent in the environs where capital’s rule and profits motives are the only rubrics to gauge the good.

                  Quote of the Day                       
A community is like a ship; everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm. Henrik Ibsen
                   Doc of the Day                      
Marriage and love have nothing in common; they are as far apart as the poles; are, in fact, antagonistic to each other.  No doubt some marriages have been the result of love.  Not, however, because love could assert itself only in marriage; much rather is it because few people can completely outgrow a convention.  There are to-day large numbers of men and women to whom marriage is naught but a farce, but who submit to it for the sake of public opinion.  At any rate, while it is true that some marriages are based on love, and while it is equally true that in some cases love continues in married life, I maintain that it does so regardless of marriage, and not because of it. MORE HERE from Emma Goldman, “The Psychology of Political Violence:”

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SEARCHDAYanarchism OR "social anarchism" OR socialism OR "democratic socialism" comparison OR similarities OR parallel OR congruent contrast OR differences OR debate OR conflict "one or the other" OR "important choice" necessity OR crucial OR central transformation OR change OR revolution history OR origins analysis OR deconstruction marxist OR radical = 2,670,000 Linkages.

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              TODAY’S HEART, SOUL, &                                  AWARENESS VIDEO                  


In the ‘breath-of-fresh-air’ department, from CBS News‘ Ben Swann’s “Reality Check,” in the event via The Free Thought Project, a skewering rebuttal of monopoly media’s otherwise wide acceptance of the notion that ‘Russian hacking’ explains Hillary Clinton’s electoral college loss in the recent Presidential contest, a controversy that, likely enough, most scrappy scribes and stalwart citizens could use some assistance in navigating, which the equally scrappy pugilist Swann provides marvelously with an irresistible five part argument that he caps with the point that completely eviscerates the CIA-&-established-interest position, to wit that those in charge ask us to believe that this erstwhile hack did not fake votes, cheat the system, or do anything else fraudulent in regard to the ballot but instead dared to reveal something akin to “the true nature” of the Clinton Foundation and the Democratic National Committee.


student writing arm


Art Farm Writers Residency Program

Marquette, NE

Art Farm offers residencies of two weeks to five months from June 1 to November 1 to poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers on a working farm.


The Fountain is currently hosing their 2016 essay contest. This year’s theme is “I Am an Immigrant.” Contest prizes total $2,100. Essays must be 1,500 to 2,500 words. Entry is free. The deadline is December 31st. Learn more here.

pascal maramis - flickr
pascal maramis – flickr


Associate Editor/Freelance Writer GameSkinny is looking for a Weekend Associate Editor and Freelance Writer. We need one brave, talented, passionate soul who loves games as much as they love the Oxford Comma to guide writers toward greatness.

Search deep within your soul, and ask yourself… are you that editor? This position involves hours on the weekends spent editing content, and writing or coming up with content ideas at any time during the week.


A Colombian Female Fighter’s Lament

A Guernica post that takes a closer look at the words and thoughts of one of the brave women who have sought to foment justice in spite of huge odds: “The Female Fighter Series pairs female writers with women who are fighting, or have fought, in armed resistance movements worldwide to bring to light the  distinctive personalities, politics, and circumstances of participation. This Guernica series is in partnership with the Politics of Sexual Violence Initiative and V-Day: A Global Movement to End Violence Against Women and Girls. Subsequent essays will be published in 2017.”

WRISSSci Fi Prospects

A New Inquiry exploration of one of the most fascinating and evolving literary genres, which can provide lots of food for thought for scrappy scribes who are interested in the medium: “ON November 3 2016, PEN America hosted science fiction and fantasy authors Deji Bryce Olukotun, Maria Dahvana Headley, and Haris Durrani for a reading and panel. The trio discussed the limits of heroism, the politics of reality-building, and the whitewashing of publishing. The following is a transcript, edited for length, of their conversation.”


Self-Publishing Writing Rescues

A Medium/Startup opinion piece that looks at the many benefits of the existence of a self-publishing platform, even when its financial rewards are scant: “I read jay caspian kang’s open letter to minority journalists this morning, and it reinvigorated my faith in my decision to self publish. I’ve never held an official writing position, never been in the room for editorial meetings, never stepped into a publication’s headquarters to report for duty. But I’ve been freelancing for over a year, and even in my limited experience, I can identify with the content of the letter. I’ve seen how the industry at large, with the exception of a few (often minority-led) publications, tailors itself to trends and power over integrity. I’ve found that, as Kang asserted, there’s no security in it for writers like us unless we “build our own shit.””

Stability & Popularity in Syria

A Duran look at the volatile situation in Syria, from a vantage view of the reality of the Syrian people: “The Syrian people, like any people who have experienced a history of civil strife, coups and general political instability, crave the peace that is only possible with stable government. Bashar al-Assad who took over from his father in 2000, has remained in power despite the continued conflict. This is something no previous modern Syrian leader had been able to achieve, and until Russia came to Syria’s aid in the war against terrorism, Assad largely stood alone.”

GENISSAlienation, Apps, Sharing, Bullshit

A New Geography article that contextualizes the actual risks, opportunties, conflicts, and contradictions built into the newly touted ‘sharing economy’ which cannot bring relief or fulfillment to working people: “Regardless of whether we buy these claims about benefits to workers, there are numerous signs that the sharing economy creates antagonism between workers and customers. The apps and automated systems that underlie these new work structures require both workers and customers to rely on technology, yet the systems are often faulty and poorly designed.  While these systems promise transparency and trust, they also create tensions. For example, such systems unfailingly include algorithmic performance assessment of service industry workers. As technology writer and software engineer Tom Slee has argued, “Rather than bringing a new openness and personal trust to our interactions, [such shifts are] bringing a new form of surveillance where service workers must live in fear of being snitched on, and while the company CEOs talk benevolently of their communities of users, the reality has a harder edge of centralised control.”  “