Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

Friday, April 07, 2006

WHISTLEBLOWING IN COLORADO


Had a great time in Colorado. Each day we spent some time protesting out in front of the space symposium where we had very close contact with the legions of military personnel and aerospace corporate executives who were attending the space war confab. We handed out leaflets asking them to be whistleblowers and Bill Sulzman kept inviting the people entering the event to stop and “give their testimonies” about graft and corruption inside the Pentagon. We also blew whistles and invited the military officers to hold a banner with us for awhile. None did.

Saw the new film called “Conviction” twice that tells the story about the Dominican nuns (Ardeth Platte, Carol Gilbert and Jackie Hudson) who spent 2-3 years in jail for their symbolic act of disarmament at a nuclear silo in northeastern Colorado. The nuns were with us and on Tuesday we all made the long trek out to the N-8 nuclear silo – returning to the scene of the crime – where they did their plowshares action. I love these women and they bring tears to my eyes each time they speak about the need for people to stretch themselves and do just a bit more to help end the senseless insanity of the USA’s foreign and military policy.

The nuns base much of their disarmament work around their interpretation of the non-violent Jesus. They also remind us that we can’t feed the poor and the military industrial complex at the same time.

I also spoke to a Philosophy class at Pikes Peak Community College. There were two former Army soldiers who were stationed in Iraq and several wives of GI’s in the class. I talked about Ethics and the Military Industrial Complex. My message was well received by the class and I enjoyed the time with them.

I will write more about the trip once I recover from the travel.

Monday, April 03, 2006

IT'S ALL ABOUT BUSINESS!


Bill Sulzman (above) picked me up at the Colorado Springs airport last night at 12:30. I had sat in the Chicago airport for 7 hours due to a huge storm that hit the midwest. By the time I got to sleep it was 2 am so you could say it was a long day for me.

Bill said that 300 people had turned out in Denver last night to see the premier of the new documentary about the three nums (Ardeth Platte, Carol Gilbert and Jackie Hudson) who have all just recently gotten out of jail for their disarmament action a couple years ago. I should see them tonight when they come to Colorado Springs for a second showing of the film. Don't know the name of the film yet.

So the fight truth decay tour is underway. The local paper reported this morning that "thousands" are expected for the National Space Symposium that begins today. Display booths in the arms bazaar will be going for $5,200 each and the registration fee is $1,200 each. You know the taxpayer will be covering those fees as all this money flowing into the aerospace industry is your tax dollar at work.

According to Steve Eisenhart, a senior V-P of the Space Foundation, "It is where the industry comes together. It is all about business."

Yeah well said Mr. Eisenhart. It is about business alright. The business of moving the arms race into the heavens. The business of profiting off a new arms race in space. The business of destroying social progress in American so our tax dollars can be moved into the coffers of the military industrial complex. It's all about business. The business of control and domination.