Wednesday, 17 December 2014

In west London, the last words of Jimmy Mubenga (killed by outsourced security personnel, carrying out British state routines) were reportedly "I can't breathe".

Meanwhile in Ohio the Cleveland police union are justifying their homicide of a child whilst expressing outrage that a gridiron player wore a t-shirt.

Reihan Salam unpacks what white privilege means (via Ta-Nehisi Coates and Brad DeLong).

Friday, 12 December 2014

'Race, class, and gender: Intersectionality between social reality and political limits' by Houria Bouteldja (via Justin LS of TMP).


[side-note: Bouteldja's navigating through and under etc. different patriarchies reminded a little bit of Deniz Kandiyoti's patriarchal bargains*, in that case just wrt treatments of different patriarchies as a starting point, something since revised by Kandiyoti herself granted

* this may well be a whitesplaining/mansplaining** addition I realise, but just really wanted to rep Kandiyoti, pretty much apropos of nowt, to be honest

**without wanting to dilute a genuinely valuable term]

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Lying is easy.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Indigenous over-representation in custody (%)
Indigenous persons as a percentage of total population Indigenous persons as a percentage of total juvenile detention population Indigenous persons as a percentage of total adult prison population
New South Wales 2.3 48.6 22.1
Victoria 0.7 10.8 6.3
Queensland 3.6 52.9 30.0
Western Australia 3.3 68.0 38.5
South Australia 1.9 41.0 23.9
Tasmania 4.0 20.0 12.4
Northern Territory 30.3 96.9 82.3
Australian Capital Territory 1.3 47.6 16.2
Australia 2.5 46.2 26.1

(source: Australian Institute of Criminology, May 2013)

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

When they were asked why the wall of tower blocks were to be built by Burgess Park but not by Dulwich Park, they answered "Dulwich is completely different". Yes,  Dulwich is completely different because it is full of very rich powerful people who would never allow their community to be bulldozed or their park to be destroyed like this

- Donnachadh McCarthy, Southwark News, Thursday 11 September 2014

Friday, 17 October 2014

Jessica Valenti on the actress Jennifer Lawrence, who reacted with 'absolutely justified anger' to the recent leaking of private images. There's also a eye-opening aside about the Disney Corporation and their terrible response to a similar situation that occurred several years ago, involving the actress Vanessa Hudgens.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Monday, 6 October 2014

'What one book do you wish that you had written?'

Beloved by Toni Morrison.

- Southwark council interview with Andrea Stuart, autumn 2014.

from the same piece: "Plantation life was a kind of intimate terrorism" (on the sugar slave trade in the Caribbean).

Monday, 22 September 2014

Grateful to Annabel (The Call Out podcast, with Henna) for giving me pause on my crass and wrong Talk like a pirate offerings below.

Friday, 19 September 2014

a straight consideration, mind you...

the policing/colonisation of language and what this affords bodies and their identities. What was it Hannah Black said about trauma? A stupid word for parts of yourself becoming inaccessible?
Tiyang pinten wonten kapal punika? ("How many men are on this ship?", Javanese)

Jangan lihat saya. Lihat lurus ke depan. Coba berlutut. Taruh tangan anda di belakang kepala! ("Don't look at me. Look forward. Kneel. Hands behind your head!", Bahasa)

Di mana senjata-senjata itu? ("Where are the weapons?", Malay)
- A straight consideration of Talk Like a Pirate Day

Friday, 12 September 2014

Enter RUMOUR, painted full of tongues

Rumour. Open your ears; for which of you will stop
The vent of hearing when loud Rumour speaks?
I, from the orient to the drooping west,
Making the wind my post-horse, still unfold
The acts commenced on this ball of earth.
Upon my tongues continual slanders ride,
The which in every language I pronounce,
Stuffing the ears of men with false reports.
I speak of peace while covert enmity,
Under the smile of safety, wounds the world;
And who but Rumour, who but only I,
Make fearful musters and prepar'd defence,
Whiles the big year, swoln with some other grief,
Is thought with child by the stern tyrant war,
And no such matter? Rumour is a pipe
Blown by surmises, jealousies, conjectures,
And of so easy and so plain a stop
That the blunt monster with uncounted heads,
The still-discordant wav'ring multitude,
Can play upon it. But what need I thus
My well-known body to anatomise
Among my household? Why is Rumour here?
I run before King Harry's victory,
Who, in a bloody field by Shrewsbury,
Hath beaten down young Hotspur and his troops,
Quenching the flame of bold rebellion
Even with the rebels' blood. But what mean I
To speak so true at first? My office is
To noise abroad that Harry Monmouth fell
Under the wrath of noble Hotspur's sword,
And that the King before the Douglas' rage
Stoop'd his anointed head as low as death.
This have I rumour'd through the peasant towns
Between that royal field of Shrewsbury
And this worm-eaten hold of ragged stone,
Where Hotspur's father, old Northumberland,
Lies crafty-sick. The posts come tiring on,
And not a man of them brings other news
Than they have learnt of me. From Rumour's tongues
They bring smooth comforts false, worse than true wrongs.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Plenty of fine responses to the recent, woeful Economist slavery review. Will B. Mackintosh goes hard here.

Will has a interesting point.

'Why write a review that’s basically guaranteed to piss off the whole world and then waste it on quibbling over a relative detail?...And that’s why they don’t like Baptist’s book: it demonstrates unequivocally that modern capitalism was born in blood. Let me say that again: whatever else you might say about capitalism, it took on its characteristic modern forms of capital accumulation and labor “management” in the context of American slavery. For a group of journalists with a deep, largely unarticulated commitment to modern capitalism’s fundamental benevolence, this is an uncomfortable truth indeed.'
2008 archive piece from Vincent Munié concerning the CAR and "France's long hand"
What Do The Birders Know?

Wednesday, 10 September 2014


(there's a great point about Bangladeshi garment workers in here too.)

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Jayati Ghosh's latest for the Guardian, arguing that "Asia’s ‘success’ in reducing poverty uses a flawed system for measuring income and ignores food insecurity".

Saturday, 6 September 2014

'BANGKOK, 3 September 2014 (IRIN) - Activists warn of a harmful regression in the World Bank's safeguard policies, claiming that proposed changes being considered this autumn could weaken the rights of indigenous people, and others in danger of displacement and abuse as a result of Bank-funded development projects.' here

Friday, 5 September 2014

Teju Cole's seven short stories about drones: here

(via JC.)

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Jamilah King at Colorlines flags up a forthcoming HBO show about Brazilian sex workers.

Don't think HBO will get any joy from Latino Rebels, then. cough
re-up from last summer re: 'mysterious' Bronze Age Cretan language, Linear B
'The Celebrity Photo Hacker’s Message To All Women', by Jessica Goldstein

(via EWF)

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

on Limits to Growth

It seems unlikely that the quest for ever-increasing growth can continue unchecked to 2100 without causing serious negative effects – and those effects might come sooner than we think.


'finite planet'
Much has been said — and much more should follow — about the militarization of the police in American cities. The images coming out of Ferguson, MO these past weeks testify to the distribution of military-grade hardware, gear, guns, and vehicles to your everyday police officer.

Here I’d like to focus on just one small part of this distribution of military-grade equipment: the uniform.


[h/t: EWF]

Friday, 29 August 2014

28% of the market traders on the Rye Lane strip in Peckham, southeast London, speak four or more languages fluently (source: Dr Suzanne Hall, LSE).

'The high street is a space which includes those who are excluded from other spaces for economic/security reasons'.


Thursday, 28 August 2014

July, 2013. 40 abortion clinics in Texas (population approximately 26 million people*).

By September, 2014. Six abortion clinics in Texas.

* not sure what counts as a person in border zones sometimes, though, granted. or, any zone.

and how many deer, or how many trees, i could not say.

(sorry, just have had this lodged in my head since it started. writing as a meat-eater, yes.)

All bodies are sovereign.
January 2013 archiving: An amazing mea culpa from the IMF’s chief economist on austerity

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

June, 2011. ICTY to Ratko Mladic: 'Genocide, persecution, murder, extermination, deportation, forcible transfer, torture, rape and plunder.'

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Europe is literally the creation of the third world. The wealth which smothers her is that which was stolen

- Fanon

Monday, 11 August 2014

Tiana Reid is everything [tumblr, columns at THE STATE].

Her recent dancehall mix is accompanied by this jewel. i hear it loud on cool tarmacadam and routed through hot metal in inner London.
Speaking of the four volumes of THE STATE so far, iv on Dubai.

Objects crystallise time, and demonstrate the work, as Caroline Osella might remind us.

Friday, 8 August 2014


Thursday, 7 August 2014

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

structure in the USA

(h/t: EWF)

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

(TY, EJ)

Monday, 4 August 2014

Jayati Ghosh archive on Unctad ("astute and progressive – so why don't developed countries like it?") here

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Somali famine, 2011 - politics rules everything around you

Friday, 1 August 2014

Thursday, 31 July 2014


Wednesday, 30 July 2014

One from the 2009 normblog archives, A Climate of Fear by guest blogger Sean Coleman.

Decades of walled-off obscurantism and unquestioned power had managed to disguise the fact that the Irish Catholic Church had been running what was, effectively, an archipelago of brutal prison camps across the country

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

YOLLAND: Who's confused? Are the people confused?
OWEN: And we're standardising those names as accurately and as sensitively as we can.
YOLLAND: Something is being eroded.

Monday, 28 July 2014

Sunday, 27 July 2014

there are at least four different ways of reaching a figure based on the methods of, respectively, the US Department of Energy, BP, The Oil and Gas Daily (Texas) and Middle East Economic Survey (Cyprus)

- Fred Halliday (2005)

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Wet Uluru, from the Mick Hartley archives. Stunning

Friday, 25 July 2014

summer '12 fresh easy re-up NYT social determinants of health in Mississippi, Persian linkages ...

Cox doesn’t know oak trees, but she knows how to talk to people. She knows when to ask if someone cannot afford insulin, or is not taking insulin, or is not keeping the insulin cold, or cannot keep the insulin cold because there is no electricity or refrigerator. Not having health insurance is a huge problem in Mississippi, but it isn’t the only one

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Bhakti Shringarpure riffs from Concerning Violence, a new documentary on Fanon, by Göran Hugo Olsson. Quoting David Macey

In a sense, it is almost absurd to criticise Fanon for his advocacy of violence. He did not need to advocate it. The ALN was fighting a war and armies are not normally called upon to justify their violence. By 1961, the violence was everywhere. It had even seeped into the unconscious.

A schoolteacher "somewhere in Algeria" set his pupils, aged between 10 and 14, the essay topic “What would you do it you were invisible?” They all said that they would steal arms and kill the French soldiers.

The children of Algeria dreamed of violence, and two of Fanon’s young patients in Blida acted out those dreams. Our prosperous societies do not have nightmarish dreams of massacres in Sétif or Philippeville or torture in their schools. Algeria had been having those nightmares for over a century.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Tokers, table football, cabbies, as many places. A day in Goma archived

Monday, 21 July 2014

Creating and Destroying the Universe in Twenty-Nine Nights
by David Shulman

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Friday, 18 July 2014

Thursday, 17 July 2014

from her archive: Samia Errazzouki responds to Chomsky on Western Sahara and the 'Arab Spring'

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

I think mistersloane (Jim Hollands) is superb here on District 9

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Friday, 11 July 2014

Thursday, 10 July 2014

"Short-term savings gained by drastic austerity measures should be weighed against their long-term costs".

Earlier this year, the New Scientist reported on a Greek austerity tragedy

(via the best fish.)

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

'Reorienting the discussion about sex work'


Tuesday, 8 July 2014

'Asked why he had not tried to leave, he said: "If we are caught, it is straight to the Palestine Branch. Anyone who goes in there does not come out."'

Monday, 7 July 2014

If, for example, you are an Aguaruna Indian in Peru, with a history of occasional revenge raiding stretching back the small handful of generations which comprise living memory (no Aguaruna can really know the extent to which such raiding was going on even a few generations ago, leave alone millennia), and if you have recently been pushed out of the forest interior into riverine villages by encroachment from oil exploration or missionaries, then your chances of being killed by your compatriots might even exceed those caught in Mexican drugs wars, Brazilian favelas, or Chicago’s South Side.

In such circumstances there would undoubtedly be much more homicide in Aguaruna-land than that faced by well-heeled American college professors, but also much less than that confronted by inmates in Soviet gulags, Nazi concentration camps, or those who took up arms against colonial rule in British Kenya, or apartheid South Africa.

If you find yourself born a boy in the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, in the center of the world’s richest nation, your average lifespan will be shorter than in any country in the world except for some African states and Afghanistan. If you escape being murdered, you may end up dead anyway, from diabetes, alcoholism, drug addiction, or similar. Such misery, not inevitable but likely, would not result from your own choices, but from those made by the state over the last couple of hundred years.

What does any of this really tell us about violence throughout human history? The fanciful assertion that nation states lessen it is unlikely to convince a Russian or Chinese dissident, or Tibetan.


Sunday, 6 July 2014

Friday, 4 July 2014

You taught me language; and my profit on't
Is, I know how to curse. The red plague rid you
For learning me your language!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

because you're a cunt

Just your typical randomised archive smear against the Met [linked to this], move along now

'It was while he in the custody area that Demetrio witnessed Harrington allegedly assault the 15-year-old, who was handcuffed. Demetrio told investigators he saw Harrington kick the young teenager in the back of the leg and, once he was on the floor, knee him in the back.

He said the alleged assault made an "echoing" sound and the teenager cried out: "I am on the floor now – you can't do anything to me. I am handcuffed and I am on the floor."

Demetrio said that medical staff were called to the scene after the teenager, whose identity is not known, began making "strange" breathing noises for several minutes.'

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

"a black cauldron where 300,000 Muslims will die...Europe to go fuck off and stay away until we have finished the job"

- Radovan Karadzic

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Tyee archive - 'Harperland'

Saturday, 28 June 2014

A friend of mine died recently. J was only 50. He was well in all ways except health. This piece from last year about ATOS makes me feel.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Who defines an event as a 'famine' is a question of power relations within and between societies

- Alex de Waal

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

"Romney now complaining he wasn't born with all the advantages of blacks and Mexicans"

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

'On Holding Hands and Shouting in the Street'

"The crowd’s attention was drawn and people stared at us, two twenty something gayboys, holding hands in the street."


(via MT)

Monday, 23 June 2014

Like some people eat potato chips, Ferguson spots gays in history. It's just his thing.


Saturday, 21 June 2014

Memo to the executive and legislative branches: there is no “unless it’s, like, a little inconvenient” exception to the Refugee Convention...An estimated 52,000 children have come to the United States since October, which is the mass-refugee-flow equivalent of a goddamned hangnail. That’s not even enough kids to sell out a One Direction show. The Met Life stadium can handle 90,000 screaming Harry Styles fans per night


Friday, 20 June 2014

"Only a few months ago, Henry Kissinger was dancing with Stephen Colbert in a funny bit on the latter's Comedy Central show.


Hill, who died in 1978, never did testify that Kissinger had urged on the Argentine generals, and the Carter administration reversed policy and made human rights a priority in its relations with Argentina and other nations. As for Kissinger, he skated—and he has been skating ever since, dodging responsibility for dirty deeds in Chile, Bangladesh, East Timor, Cambodia, and elsewhere. Kissinger watchers have known for years that he at least implicitly (though privately) endorsed the Argentine dirty war, but this new memo makes clear he was an enabler for an endeavor that entailed the torture, disappearance, and murder of tens of thousands of people. Next time you see him dancing on television, don't laugh."

re-up from this January in Mother Jones

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Some good points last year from the late Norm Geras [RIP], discussing the name of a certain pro gridiron team who ply their trade around the capital city of the USA. Am excerpting the closing money quote; should not have to do this obviously, but there we go. Emphasis is in the original at normblog.

"It is constantly surprising how stuck people can be over the view that racist prejudice is simply a matter of what one intends; and how stubbornly they resist the obvious truth that words and symbols carry meanings associated with their history and which cannot simply be disowned by declarations of good will."

For those interested, Lauren Chief Elk sometimes writes on the topic of the same NFL team, riffing on the name [Chief Elk's Twitter / tumblr].

Friday, 6 June 2014


Let them live: Josephine Baker, Maya Angelou, and Rihanna as erotic and holistic by Sesali Bowen.

A colleague of Bowen's has a short obit, which includes a embed of Dr Angelou reading Still I Rise here.

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Friday, 23 May 2014

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

massive MASSIVE tune

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

About a year and a half ago I was mugged (in a public place in the middle of Adelaide on a Wednesday afternoon). Two white teenage males snatched my handbag and left me with a sprained wrist, several bruises and feeling very shaken. When giving my statement to the police the first thing they asked me was to describe the men, were they ‘Abos’, Africans, Arabs or Asians? When I replied that they were white I was asked if I was sure.


Monday, 5 May 2014

I dropped into the Mitchell Centre [shopping mall in the City centre] to get something for lunch. It was busy as usual. I was walking down the main ‘mall’ section toward the supermarket. There was a young Aboriginal woman walking ahead of me. A police officer (walking in the opposite direction carrying a plastic bag full of groceries, obviously on his lunch break returning from the same supermarket) stopped her, ‘touching’ her arm to ‘ask’ - “What’s your name?” I didn’t hear her reply but her body language suggested she was certainly intimidated if not frightened. The cop then replied (as if frivolously), “Just checking.” And he carried on walking. All in one stride.


Thursday, 1 May 2014

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

For my very dear pal Q, who has shown me a lot of importance down the years, and taught me much

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Kurdish musician Yabroni and one of his three daughters (i do not know her name). Father, daughter, and her two sisters all now live in the refugee camp at Harmanli in Bulgaria, having fled their native Al-Hasakah in Syria. (Credit to YouTube user Krassimir Yankov for the upload.)

Saturday, 19 April 2014

The World Bank defines extreme poverty, as someone getting by on less than US$1.25 a day. This sounds arbitrary but it’s a baseline. Put aside, for a moment, valid debates about monetised baselines as the paradigm for measuring affliction in this world ruled by economists (and how human development seems to necessarily entail the scouring of our finite planet, and how this is all caught up in fundamentally unjust relations of power in a white supremacist world structured by European-authored imperialism).

The number of extremely poor is currently about 1.2 billion people, says the Bank: nearly one in five human beings.

Anyway, this chart has been doing the rounds as the Bank released a report last week. One in three very poor people (by this measurement) are in India, with its overall population of about 1.2 billion people. The DR Congo sticks out of the countries doing the worst in per head terms, though, if you consider its population; and Tanzania, really. China’s population is about 1.3 billion, Nigeria about 177 million, Bangladesh about 166 million. The DRC’s population is about 77 million and Tanzania about 50 million. (Pakistan’s population is about 196 million currently, Indonesia’s maybe 253 million, and Ethiopia’s about 96 million, whilst Kenya’s is a somewhat more modest 45 million or so. These population estimates for mostly mid-2014 were lifted from the CIA factbook.)

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Their going looked like a disaster

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Sunday, 16 March 2014

'If you don't stand for something you'll fall for anything'

Friday, 7 March 2014

In August-September 2005, during Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, the worst flooded area of “Central City” was, at 4,687 km², [inhabitants / sq km] the city’s largest population density and on the site of a former lake at 1.5 metres below sea level (New Orleans Community Data Center, 2005). The majority of inhabitants were low-income and black, an ethnic minority in the USA with a long history of disadvantage, which added to an already rich melting pot of vulnerability. Social, including political and economic, forces had obliged disadvantaged communities to occupy the most vulnerable areas of a vulnerable city. Those same forces created and perpetuated poverty, which enmeshed in this vulnerability and led to characteristics of place that were, to some degree, defined not just by the people and their poverty, but also by the fact that the people and their poverty developed according to the characteristics of the place. These characteristics of place were further defined by people in other, less poor places, who enjoyed the national advantages of New Orleans’ port and culture without concern for the consequences for other people living in the same city.

from here.

Monday, 24 February 2014

I am beginning with the young. We older ones are used up.

- Adolf Hitler.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Fuck that. Turn the music back up.

RIP Jordan Davis, 1995-2012.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Colin Ward died four years ago today. There's a short interview with libcom's Rob Ray here in Colin's home village of Debenham, Suffolk. (via Will.)

Tuesday, 7 January 2014