The Thunderbolt 121114 Future or Not?

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The Thunderbolt

News — Commentary — Calendar of Activist Events — Dumb Jokes





1) FYI Section:

1A) Inter Occupy Working with Flush the TPP

1B) Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation Death Penalty Survey

1C) PiPE’s New Advocacy Group

1D) Off the Grid: Communities Moving toward Self Sufficency

2) Bernie Meyer on Gandhi

3) Olympia World Affairs Council Discussion of Current Policy Issues

4) Black Lives Matter: Oly Kids for Justice

5) The Village Winter Warmer: A Celebration of Placemaking

6) Seahawks Shutdown: Black Lives Matter

7) Third Annual Housing and Homeless Luncheon and Award

8) FREE SKOOL: DIY Screen Printing

9) FREE SKOOL: Creative Writing Potluck

10) Free Skool Organizing Brunch

11) Bonus Tip of the Week




Future or Not?



Breaking News

Hey Kids!

One problem with my schedule is that when news breaks on Wednesday I don’t have time to write a piece on whatever it is before that week’s publication.

The Senate ‘Torture Memo’ was just released, and as you might guess, I have a lot to say about that — I just don’t have time to say it right now.

Tune in next week.


Works in Progress

It occurs to me that I have never given Works in Progress proper dues: In case your entire time in Olympia has been as a slave held in a basement and thus you’ve never been downtown, Works in Progress is a local radical monthly newspaper that publishes under-published information that you need to know. They are available free of charge in stands all over downtown, in most of the downtown coffee shops, and at both the food co-ops.


New Jersey: #1 at #2!

NPR is a mix of government/ corporate propaganda, truly interesting facts about our world, and some truly radical stuff. Occasionally I learn something truly profound or important or interesting or mind-blowing listening to NPR.

For instance: I just learned that the modern flush toilet was invented in the Garden State of New Jersey! How appropriate!

For a while the state of New Jersey had a complete monopoly on flush toilets. If you wanted to flush your #2 away then you had no other choice but to do it through the state of New Jersey.

If you didn’t like it you could just use the outhouse.

I love it when something happens that is just so in-your-face karmically appropriate; if New Jersey is going to be #1 at something it might as well be at #2 since so many aspects of their great state — from its corrupt politics to its corrupt cops to its poverty to its vast endless landscapes consisting of cement and smokestacks from horizon to horizon — the Garden State of New Jersey just so often reminds me of their former #1 product’s #2 contents…

Speaking of karmically appropriate, I now find myself wondering if it would be possible for New Jersey flush itself down its own toilet?


Useful Philosophy of Life

I joke — therefore, I am…


Precisely Targeted Murder

I’ve been covering the drone issue for a long time. I regularly get serious pushback from Obama apologists when I say that hundreds of women and children have been killed by Obama’s drone strikes and that these strikes thus represent a clear-cut case of mass-murder and war crimes. Due to the insane conditions on the ground, while the mass-killings of civilians is well known, up until now only a few dozen of these deaths have actually been documented to journalistic standards. Thus, up until now the Obama-bots have been able to get away with parroting the contention that these strikes are carefully and precisely targeted to minimize innocent casualties and that such casualties are far and few between. The people I trust for my information have been saying otherwise and since they have almost always been right in the past I figured they were probably right this time too — but up until now the evidence has been scattered, suppressed, and delegitimized enough so that Obama’s war crimes have not become a major issue with the general public, and indeed, most Americans don’t even know this is happening, and even those that do know about the strikes think that they are killing ‘terrorists’ without endangering American troops, so they are chill with it.

Whatever. The evidence is now in. As usual, the sources I depend upon for my information have once again proven to be, if anything, understated. An English human rights organization called Reprieve has just blown Obama’s contentions out of the water. Reprieve has issued what I believe to be the first comprehensive report on the actual numbers involved…

…and it turns out that things are actually much worse than even I have been reporting.

Get this: Reprieve’s report states that US drone strikes kill, on average, 28 innocent civilians for every intended target. [Emphasis added] Reprieve’s report states that drone strikes targeting 41 people in Yemen and Pakistan have killed more than a thousand innocent civilians. [Emphasis added]

Reprieve’s report states that in its attempts to kill al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri alone, the CIA killed 76 children and 29 adults. [Emphasis added]

They killed 76 children and 29 adults trying to kill Al-Zawahiri.

Al-Zawahiri is still alive.

I think that these facts should be emphasized.


Justice — or Not?

A misperception suffered by most Americans is that the police exist to solve crimes. They do sometimes work to solve crimes — though usually not very enthusiastically and usually not very well — but the central purpose for the formation of the original police forces and the central purpose for their continued existence was and is to keep the populace (especially that portion of the populace with black skin) under thumb and in line. I don’t have time to dig up the links right now but I believe the original metropolitan police force was in Philadelphia and it was specifically formed to quell ‘civic unrest’. Many of the early police forces were direct outgrowths of the old slave-catching gangs that found themselves out of work after slavery was abolished.


Future — or Not?

Wall Street is still enjoying record profits. The rest of us not so much. The numbers are truly astounding and maddening.

Last week I kind of created custom definitions for ‘value’ and ‘wealth’ by stating that one is real while the other is not.

I can just about guarantee that this reality (or non-reality) is about to bite us in the butt big time.

While I constantly diss on the government’s lack of response to Wall Street criminality, actually there is not really much if anything that they can really do about it. I mentioned last week that the power to destroy something was to have complete control over that thing and the Banksters will almost certainly destroy it before they give it up. If I can see what’s coming, you would think the people who are actually making this stuff happen also know how it all ends — though possibly they share that aspect of human psychology wherein people are able to simply not see things they don’t want to see. I also suspect at least some of them think they can construct walled compounds with private armies or something to survive the coming catastrophe — and while speculating on that particular aspect of the situation is way beyond my area of expertise or knowledge, I suspect that isn’t going to work out for them very well.

I have a lot of trouble not screaming at my computer when I hear some talking head speculating about how long it is going to take for our economy to ‘recover’.

News flash, Kids: Our economy is not going to ‘recover’. The Machine has sucked the United States dry. There is nothing left. There are still tens-of-trillions in ‘derivatives’ out there and when those notes come due then we are going to see an economic collapse that makes 2007 look like child’s play — and that day is not all that far off. All we have left in our larder is derivative wealth that has no actual value. The vast treasure that our life’s blood has been creating over the last few decades has been stolen from us and it is now sitting in Cayman Island bank accounts — and no one is trying to get it back. The only thing saving our collective economic asses right now is the fact that the US dollar is the reserve currency of the world — but the BRIC countries are about to create a competing reserve currency and if they succeed at this (and there is no reason to believe that they won’t) then that will knock the last legs from under the United States’ economic house of cards.

While I was spot-on concerning what was about to happen when I called the coming economic collapse in 2006, I was a little off in my timing as I was thinking that Henry Paulson et al would wait until after the 2008 presidential election so they could blame the Democrats — and I think that was indeed the Republican’s plan, but I suspect things got out of hand and they just couldn’t hold it together quite long enough.

Or perhaps there was back room backstabbing going on.

Whatever. When our economy collapses then civilization itself is quite likely to collapse with it and then things will go truly nuts.

We need to start growing our own food, and since the normal pattern in such situations is for people with guns to make slaves out of the people who grow food, then we need to plan for counteracting that paradigm also. Citizen militias would be a good thing to have in such a situation, but the only organized and armed groups that we have are police and soldiers and various other agents of the Machine. Since such people tend to take over during disasters and catastrophes then that is probably going to be a big problem.


Black Mirror

While the title for this bit sounds like one of mine, it is actually the name of the latest little Netflix gem that I have discovered. Black Mirror is a series of vignettes that has elements of the Twilight Zone, and The Hunger Games but it is also completely unlike either and is in fact a whole new thing of its own unlike anything else I’ve ever seen. Each episode is a completely different story with different characters and different ambiance a lá Twilight Zone and the fact that it is impossible to describe Black Mirror is a description in and of itself.

The sui generis nature is apparent in the plot for the first episode: A very beautiful and very popular princess is kidnapped in England — and the demand for her return is that the very unpopular prime minister must have sex with a pig on live TV. The kidnappers are computer geniuses and they proscribe any conditions that would make it possible for the prime minister to fake anything. Then, there ensues a completely believable series of events with truly talented actors that make you believe in the plausibility of a series of events leading to the prime minister of England having sex with a pig on live TV…

Which is what makes this such an incredibly imaginative (if somewhat uncomfortable) project.

Then ending of this episode is also completely unexpected.

I’ve only watched two episodes so far and they have both blown my mind. Check it out.


Ugly Americans

There was a popular novel when I was young called The Ugly American that represented one of the earliest examples of the new brand of modern novelistic criticisms of American foreign policy. I actually haven’t read it since I was a child, but I remember that book because it was one of the first ‘alternative’ views of American society that I had ever read. (I led a ‘Leave It to Beaver’ lifestyle until I was 11.)

The Ugly American was an exposé exposing how mucked up most American foreign embassies were (and in most cases still are). The literal ‘ugly’ American in the novel was an American who was literally ugly — but he was the protagonist — whereas the metaphorical ‘ugly’ Americans were all of the glittering and attractive society mavens that make up most American diplomatic entourages.

The Ugly American posited that a good deal of American foreign policy was being conducted out of sheer and almost willful ignorance. The diplomatic staff of whatever country the story took place in (I forget if it was a real or a fictional country) knew absolutely nothing — and cared absolutely nothing — about the culture or the people of the country in which they were stationed. They constantly made ignorant political and social faux pas some of which were highly detrimental to American interests. Then, as now, many of these diplomatic posts and ambassadorships are awarded as political payback for generous campaign contributions or whatever rather than for any particular diplomatic skills or knowledge. Since American foreign policy toward most foreign countries consists of ‘my way or the highway’ then diplomatic skills or cultural sensitivity or things like that are pretty much irrelevant in most embassies anyway…

…and I maintain that there is absolutely nothing ignorant about this strategy. I maintain that these ignorant people are intentionally placed where they are because American interests consist of maintaining violent chaos in major parts of the world — especially the parts that have oil — so that the Wall Street Oil War Machine can control the overall economic interests of these countries by arming ever-changing factions that are variously funded by the United States or by Saudi Arabia or by China or by Iran or by Russia or by whoever and who thus spend so much time butchering each other that they don’t have the time and/or they don’t have the wherewithal to challenge their true enemies — they, in fact, are often completely dependent upon their true enemies for their funding and are thus unlikely to stand up to them even if they actually realize who their ‘true enemy’ is. What they definitely do know is that their land is chock-full of large organized gangs consisting mostly of heavily armed mass-murdering lunatics. The locals need help protecting themselves — which help is almost always available if you are willing to pay the price.

Said price usually consists of some form of selling your soul to the devil.

It is literally insane — but it continues unabated.

What has changed as a result of all the recent revelations of massive corruption and fraud in the government portion of the War Machine?

(The disappearance of hundreds of billions in cash in Iraq and the disappearance of $1 trillion into the Defense Department budget come immediately to mind…)

What has changed?

Since ‘paraphrasing’ means to shorten and/or simplify a comment, it isn’t possible to paraphrase James Risen’s comment when he was asked the same question about the Security State — but to adapt Mr. Risen’s comment to the question of any significant changes to the manner in which the Wall Street Oil War Machine conducts its business:

Not much.

It’s time to get to work…




The Thunderbolt Calendar

Week of December 11th thru December 17th, 2014




1) FYI Section:


1A) Inter Occupy Working with Flush the TPP

Inter Occupy has plugged in with Flush the TPP. Here is a link to their webpage and an online petition to flush the TPP:


1B) Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation Death Penalty Survey

This is from Glen:

Regardless of what you think about the death penalty – and regardless of whether you live in the greater Olympia WA area or elsewhere – the Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation is seeking your ideas.  We invite you to complete this survey by Tuesday December 23, 2014.

Your answers will be anonymous unless you choose to identify yourself for follow-up participation.

People in the greater Olympia area have been working for 25 years toward abolishing the death penalty.  A huge amount of progress has occurred in recent years nationwide.  The Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation’s death penalty committee has done good work and invites YOUR ideas so we can make more progress here in Washington State.

Thank you for completing this survey by December 23, 2014.

The survey is at this link:



1C) PiPE’s New Advocacy Group

This is from Renata:

Trans* Day of Remembrance spawns T.A.G.—PiPE’s Trans Advocacy Group!

On November 20th, nearly 150 people gathered in Sylvester Park to honor Trans* lives lost to violence in the last year. This is the 16th international event, and the 2nd in Olympia.

A committee of PiPE volunteers organized the local #TDOR, which included authentic first-hand stories about what it’s like to be Trans* in Thurston County, as well as a Q&A reception on policy and cultural changes promoting inclusion.

PiPE’s efforts earned local media coverage about the event and about the Trans* rights movement:

  • PiPE volunteer Kerry Scott on MIXX 96’s “It’s Your Community”(scroll to hear Kerry’s Nov. 16th interview!)
  • Olympia hosts Transgender Day of Remembrance to honor victims, raise awareness(The Olympian, 11/16/14)
  • Olympia vigil honors transgender victims who died from hate crimes(The Olympian, 11/21/2014)

But we’re not stopping there. PiPE will continue Trans*forming our community throughout the year! Our organizing committee is continuing on as TAG: the Trans Advocacy Group, and now you can get involved too, as a trans* person or ally.

TAG meets Thursdays from 4-6 at PiPE’s Purple House downtown, at 408 7th Ave SE. (map here) If you want to take action, build skills and build community, simply show up on Thursdays, or write to (flyer attached!)

Or, come to the Olympia City Council meeting Tuesday, Dec. 9th at 7pm sharp, where the council will recognize city staff for a score of “100” on the Human Rights Campaign Municipal Equality Index. The city went from a 65 to 100 in one year, thanks to dedicated advocacy by PiPE staff and volunteers!




1D) Off the Grid: Communities Moving toward Self Sufficency

This is from Janet:

Starting up in Mississippi:  a community (presently 170,000) based on cooperative economics, a transition away from fossil fuels, support for local economy and for low-income members of the community.

Janet Jordan



2) Bernie Meyer on Gandhi

Thursday December 11th at 7 pm @ Traditions Café, 300 5th Ave SW

Come hear about Bernie’s journeys to the Far East.

From Mike:

Traditions Fair Trade & Café

Thursday, December 11th

7:00 PM

5th and Water St.


Bernie Meyer brought his Gandhi message for the 14th time in ten years to India in September and October. Kolkatta, Bihar, Jarkhand, Bopal, Delhi, Chandigarh, Jaipur, 
Rajsamand, Aurangabad … includes many internationals.

What is going on in India?

What about Gandhi?

What was the response to the “American Gandhi’s” message?



3) Olympia World Affairs Council Discussion of Current Policy Issues

Friday December 12th from 7 to 9 pm @ the Olympia Center, 222 Columbia St N

I’m not sure who these folks are but they claim to be a non-partisan educational organization so I’ll take them at their word.

This is from the World Affairs Council:

World Affairs Council
Date: Friday, December 12, 2014
Time: 7PM – 9PM
Short Description: Discussions of current policy issues.
Location: Olympia Center

222 Columbia St. N.

Olympia, WA 98501



The Olympia World Affairs Council cordially invites you to its annual December discussion of current policy issues and dilemmas confronting the United States. As we have selected three topics about which well-informed and reasonable people might well differ, we expect a lively discussion aimed at delineating the main elements of a considered U.S. policy. The three subjects — with the moderator listed in parentheses — are:

— The Rise of ISIS and the U.S. (Chuck Peterson);

— Turmoil in the Ukraine (Dave Hinshaw); and

— The Immigration of Unaccompanied Children from Central America (John Hamilton).

The December meeting is scheduled for 7:30-9:00 PM the second Thursday — the 11th — and will be held at the Olympic Center, but in a room down the hallway from our normal meeting place. Following a few minutes of mixing and enjoying Christmas cookies, we’ll divide into three groups. At the conclusion, the moderator of each group will summarize the discussion for all the members present. We hope all members will come for what should be a lively and interesting meeting.

Below, we have listed articles that provide helpful background and offer diverging views.


1..The “Islamic State” Crisis and U.S. Policy. Congressional Research Service.

  1. “Faulty Powers, Who Started the Ukraine Crisis?” inhttp:// with authors Michael McFaul, Stephen Sestanovich and John Mearsheimer.

3.. “Five Takeaways From Eastern Ukraine’s Separatist Vote” inhttp://

  1. “Poroshenko: “Cease-Fire Deal ‘Adjustments’ Possible After Pseudo- Elections” in ukraine-141103-voa01
  2. “The Surge in Unaccompanied Children from Central America: A Humanitarian Crisis at our Border” Diana Villiers Negroponte. Brookings Institute.–unaccompanied-children- central-america.

  1. “The Surge in Unaccompanied Children from Central America: A Humanitarian Crisis at our Border” Diana Villiers Negroponte. Brookings Institute.–unaccompanied-children- central-america.

  1. “Children Illegally Crossing the U.S. Border: Responding Requires Policy Changes.” David Inserra. The Heritage Foundation. research/reports/2014/07/children-illegally-crossing-the-us-border-responding- requires-policy-changes

“Unaccompanied Children from Central America: Foreign Policy Considerations.” Peter J. Meyer, Coordinator.



4) Black Lives Matter: Oly Kids for Justice

Saturday December 13th from 4 to 7 pm @ Sylvester Park, Capital Way S & Legion Way SE

Even the kids are tired of cops murdering people.

This is from Ell:

In solidarity with the march on DC this Saturday, Oly youth are leading a candlelight vigil and procession honoring the lives of youth killed and impacted by racist violence. This is an all ages demonstration of support for a new culture in which all children of color and their lives are valued.


bring candles, signs, bubbles, sidewalk chalk to share and please invite all families seeking justice.



5) The Village Winter Warmer: A Celebration of Placemaking

Saturday December 13th from 6 to 9 pm @ Eastside Urban Farm and Garden, 2326 4th Ave E

This is from the Village Building Convergence folks.

From Chris:

The Holiday season is upon us, and with it comes food, merriment and catching up with friends and neighbors!  I hope you’ll do just that with us next Saturday, December 13, when the Olympia Village Building Convergence crew presents the:

The Village Winter Warmer

6:00 pm, Saturday December 13

At the Eastside Urban Farm and Garden store

2326 4th Ave. E. Olympia

Suggested Donation $5 – $10

Families and Children are welcome!

This community party will mark the kickoff of our plans and preparations, looking ahead to the Olympia Village Building Convergence, a year-long series of placemaking events to bring together neighbors and communities, culminating in a 10-day summer extravaganza in August 2015.

The Village Winter Warmer will be a celebration of local efforts to transform common spaces into friendly neighborhood places.  Featuring a delicious feast, gingerbread village building, and interactive ways to build connections in your community.   Music, libations and almost certainly dancing. All people welcome.

Co-sponsored by Northwest EcoBuilding Guild, Olympia Federal Savings and Transition Olympia

(please print and post attached flyer where interested people gather!)

What we’ll be doing:

In addition to eating, drinking and dancing, we’ll have some neighborly speed networking, musical chairs-style!  We’ll build a gingerbread village to get in the placemaking spirit.  We’ll be shooting some video at the event for our promo and fundraising videos!  RSVP if you would like to be interviewed about placemaking in the community!

If you come, you’ll learn more details about the OlyVBC, including numerous ways to get involved:

  • Join one of our planning committees, meetings begin in January:

o   Project/Site Coordination

o   Fundraising

o   Outreach

o   Food and Venue

  • Placemaker’s Academy 11-part training series next April – July
  • Neighborhood potlucks to form Placemaking Teams

Join our Facebook Group:

Our new website Coming Soon:

We hope to see you soon!

Chris van Daalen

Shannon Pritchard

Matthew Kreiling

Kimberlie Gridley

Emily Dunn-Wilder

Pat Rasmussen

Brighida deVargas

The Winter Warmer committee!



6) Seahawks Shutdown: Black Lives Matter

Sunday December 14th at 11 am @ Century Link Field, 800 Occidental Ave S, Seattle

I don’t usually promote Seattle events but this is big and getting bigger — and this particular action also combines another of my favourite activities, i.e. pointing to sports fans how they spend all of their time/ money/ passion on some stupid pointless game that means absolutely nothing while their world is collapsing around their ears.

This is from Outside Agitators:

We Demand Justice for Mike Brown, Eric Garner, and other victims of police brutality. WE SAY NO MORE Injustice. NO BUSINESS AS USUAL. NO JUSTICE, NO PEACE.

Seahawks Game,11AM @ Century Link Field.
Bring your Seahawks gear and a second layer of clothing (this part is important) and prepare to shake shit up a bit.

Remember, the nation is expecting this movement to die down after a few weeks. Let’s not let Seattle give anyone that satisfaction.

See you Sunday.



7) Third Annual Housing and Homeless Luncheon and Award

Monday December 15th from Noon to 1 pm @ Women’s Club New Location, 1002 Washington St SE

This is an awards ceremony for some of Olympia’s homeless-advocate heroes.

This is from Anna:

It’s time for the annual Housing & Homeless Luncheon & award:

3rd Annual Housing & Homeless Hero awards luncheon

Monday, noon – 1 pm

December 15, 2014

Women’s Club – new location

1002 Washington St SE

Downtown Olympia

We will be presenting the 2014 Housing & Homeless Hero award to Meg Martin, by a nearly unanimous vote

We will also be presenting an award to Commissioner Karen Valenzuela for her many years of leadership, hard work & advocacy for housing, shelter & social service programs


  1. Anna Schlecht  / Housing Program Manager

City of Olympia Housing Program

City of Olympia / 601 4th Avenue East  /  Olympia WA 98501

(360) 753-8183  /

City of Olympia Website:

Please Note:  This message and any reply may be subject to public disclosure.



8) FREE SKOOL: DIY Screen Printing

Wednesday December 17th at 6 pm @ 428 Plymouth St



9) FREE SKOOL: Creative Writing Potluck

Thursday December 18th from 6 to 8:30 pm @ Media Island, 816 Adams St SE



10) Free Skool Organizing Brunch

Thursday December 18th at 12:30 pm @ Media Island, 816 Adams St SE

If you want to plug in with the Free Skool, then attend this meeting if at all possible.

This is from OFS:

A new coalition of free skools or otherwise autonomous learning projects is forming in the southern Salish Sea area (aka Puget Sound). No money will be charged to attend any of these open hoses or for any activities connected to this network/ coalition. Free means FREE. We are expanding our capacity to work together in creating all that which education has suppressed. This is a long-term and multi-generational project for those of all levels of capacity.



11) Bonus Tip of the Week:

Help build a future today.




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