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

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure.

Saturday, December 22, 2007


I was watching CNN news this morning and they were interviewing a GI in Iraq who will be away from his new wife this Christmas. He said, "I'm just here taking care of business" and I thought just how right he is. The occupation of Iraq is all about oil and war business and these soldiers are just giving up their lives to take care of things for the big corporations.

The business of America is business the old saying goes. Or the song, "I'm taking care of business and working over time."

Another image for me where folks are "taking care of business" was New Orleans this week. The photo above shows the scene where police used chemical spray and stun guns on the dozens of protesters trying to get into the packed City Council chamber. The New Orleans City Council last Thursday moved to demolish thousands of low-income houses as the city continues the agonisingly slow process or rebuilding from Hurricane Katrina.

Demolition crews will now move in to dismantle the 4,500 brick buildings (many I've seen on video are in good shape) that generations of poor people lived in. The poor in New Orleans are concerned that the authorities intend to reduce the numbers of predominantly poor, black people living there.

They are clearing out the poor so they can use the land to house those who can pay more for housing. Taking care of business and working over time to do it.

Shortly after Katrina struck, the Republican Congressman Richard Baker told lobbyists in a Baton Rouge Red Cross shelter: “We finally cleaned up public housing in New Orleans. We couldn't do it, but God did.”

Taking care of business with help from the Lord......

The story of New Orleans, the story of America today, is that business interests come first and that the people be damned. Democracy has been drowned and will stay that way until the people rise up to demand something different.

My son Julian, visiting for the holidays, told me last night that we get "hope when people make demands." No demands then no hope.

We need to start taking care of the people and the Mother Earth. Capitalism is killing us.


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