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Poke Surveillance Culture in the Mechanical Eye

Fun Tips & Tricks to Confuse Cameras

By Anonymous

Surveillance cameras are increasingly forced into public spaces without warning. They are everywhere. If this is the environment we must engage with, then we will use all the tools at our disposal in resisting the processes of facial recognition. The liberal logic of transparency validates the existence of such technologies–one can think back to Aeon Flux which depicts a society where transparency is fetishized and exploited by politicians to at once control the masses and to construct their own spectacular presence. The American center-left is full of what Noam Chomsky would call proto-fascists: closet authoritarians who are quick to dismiss their presented permissive openness for the goal of societal control. Without further ado, here are some simple tips to resist surveillance culture in your town.

Make a Map – Surveillance cameras exist in physical spaces. Knowing where they are is part of the fun. Meet up with friends and split an area into digestible pieces. Now walk through your area, making note of where the cameras are. Pool the information found together with your team and then map it. After you have your map, you can figure out which routes avoid surveillance and which territories to be vigilant within.

Paint Your Face – Facial recognition software focuses on the area from the bridge of your nose to where your eyes meet. Avoid make-up that will highlight distinct facial characteristics like eye shadow and lipstick. Since most software converts photos to black-and-white, monochromatic face-paint works best. Do what you can to scramble your face. Obscure shadows. Think asymmetrically.

Style Your Hair – Use the same approach as you did with your subversive make-up. Asymetricality is key. Cover as much of your face as possible. Especially the area between your eyes and nose. Extra points for cheek coverings.

Smile – When taking photographs for the state (driver’s license photos, mugshots, etc.) make sure to smile. Facial expressions that change the distances of your facial features make it harder for software to recognize your neutral face. Extra points for weirdo expressions.

Turn the Camera Around – If you can, move the camera. Make it face a wall so that its surveillance days are temporarily over.

Bag on the Camera – Get a shopping bag and tie it over an accessible surveillance camera.

Picture Perfect – Trick the camera with a picture of the very street scene it is supposed to be capturing. Set it up in front of the camera lens. See how long it lasts!

Stand in Solidarity with Berliners – 19 February 2013 will see the European Police Congress in Berlin. In preparation, German anarchists of the anti-surveillance CAMOVER are asking people to participate in a game. The only rules: see how many cameras you can covertly destroy. CAMOVER is also calling for a demo on the 16th of February at 8 pm in Mariannenplatz, Berlin.

Boldly Going Where No Zinester Has Gone Before: Zine Reviews

Zine Reviews

Å¡! Baltic Comics Magazine #10

komikss@gmail.com Biedrība Grafiskie stāsti
Robežu iela 18-4
Rīga, LV-1004
Latvia

Each volume of the Latvian Å¡! is centered around a theme. The concept pushing #10 into the world is “sea stories,” which half of the time means the beach. The beach marks our entry into the dominant geography of the ocean. The beach offers us comfort in the face of the open sea. These comics, done by Baltic artists, as well as artists from abroad, explore the fears and joys that accompany human relationships with the sea. The 146-page publication is perfect-bound and printed in full-color. Twenty-nine artists contributed to this issue.

Something for everyone. (joey)

Datacide: Magazine for Noise and Politics #11

datacide@c8.com C. Fringeli c/o vision

P.O. Box 591 CH-4005 Basel, Switzerland

MRR-style publication with stories in the front (business), reviews in the back (party). Seemingly these cats are talking less about “noise” in terms of non-musical sound specifically, than as a generic term for electronic music in Europe. This issue includes pieces on raver politics, right-wing elements in martial industrial & neofolk, poetry, and reading recommendations. Layout is so plain you’ll be looking around for ketchup. (joey)

Artifacts of Light

luperci@gmail.com

Carefully presented photographs of empty landscapes. Black frames border these glimpses into silent films that never were. Light finds its way to the viewer twice removed: once through the photographs, and a second time through photocopy (this is a conservative estimate… if one considers the number of times an image can be copied for a zine, it could be much more). The graveness of the photos seems to hint at the world-weariness mentioned by the author, an Albuquerque-to- Oakland transplant, at the end of this collection. Recommended punk-house coffee

table zine. (joey)

North American Yob

P.O. Box 4912 Thousand Oaks, CA 91359

The mind behind Southern Californian zine BACON IN THE BEANS is back with a new one. The font gets just as small as previous issues, so bring out your magnifying glasses and enjoy. Starts out with a story about sexual segregation at a Florida KFC continues on with bad advice and all-around degeneracy with a soundtrack. This issue has a couple of comics, including a page full of puns by Slimey Valley legend Joe Franke, of 80s fanzine LIFE IS A JOKE. The author promises an answer to the riddle “Who’s the one posing? The punker or the sheep?” in issue #4 so stay tuned. (joey)

Scam #9: Damaged 1011 Bedford #3 Brooklyn, NY 11205

Long-time writer Erick Lyle spent his 2012 researching the story behind Black Flag’s “Damaged.” And did he put some work into it. Lyle’s work included interviews with all of the bandmates about the recording that he wouldn’t hear until 1988. For not having lived it the first time around, Lyle does some serious footwork to make this a worthy addition to the Black Flag Library (c). Chronicles the war on the punks by LAPD. Understand that police story. I will always have respect for the band that provided my first glimpse of an anarchist lifestyle. It was all through a fourth generation copy of Decline of Western Civilization playing at my local record store. Seeing that they managed to live in closets, without understanding exactly why, and avoid rent to make music was awe-inspiring and terrifying to a me at 12-years. Hopefully this zine will make its way into the hands of unknowing youth in a

similar way. (joey)

Scream Queens interview Yacob/Melting Wreck screamqueensradio.tumblr.com

berkeleyliberationradio.net

An accompaniment to the Yacob/Melting Wreak cassette split. Got this one at a house show with what change and lint was in my pocket. This zine contains a transcript of an on-air interview with solo electronics manipulators Yacob and Melting Wreck. Both seem to drift in and out of the Oakland scene with many hats. These cats are pretty political, which made for an exciting interview. The facilitators of the interviews are a collective of DJs who call themselves the Scream Queens, who have a radio show every Wednesday night from 10 pm to 12 am. Like the tape it is meant to supplement, this zine has a side A and B for each interview. Included are life-size reproductions of the Yacob/Melting Wreck tape’s art. (joey)

Nancy: A Queer Zine #1 creepclub.co.uk/nancy

“Hail to the Nancy! Effeminate queers are my heroes.” These are the words that open Alex Creep’s zine. NANCY is a day-dreaming manifesto for the effeminate queer with pop culture on the mind. References include “My So-Called Life”, Marilyn Manson, Lady Gaga, Glee, Ziggy Stardust, and more. Like clip-art, Creep’s cartoons create homes for themselves among the text. The images, both hand-drawn and software-illustrated, feel like escaped characters from 1930s Betty Boop shorts. For all you World Wide Web potatoes, be sure to see Alex Creep’s online presence, which is a meeting place for glitched-out GIFs, music videos, and digital mixtapes. (joey)

The Core infect@hirntrust.at

This colorful comic by Dieter VDO is the European answer to Johnny Ryan. Four short stories manage to incorporate aliens, body-builders, Smurfs, and monster dance parties in just sixteen pages. Full of shiny nudity and violence. Unlike Ryan, Dieter is a bit more playful and less dogmatic. Very phallic art. One representation of poop inside. The people at Hirntrust seem to put in extra effort to make sure degenerate art like this is circulating in the world. (joey)

Size Queen infect@hirntrust.at

Surrealist digital photo-collage on glossy paper. Why he isn’t the official portrait artist of US Presidents might explain the problems the US faces on a whole new level. These portraits devalue the subject matter, highlighting the absurdity of power. Yes, that is Lincoln as a unicorn. Theodore Roosevelt has two space-surfing dinosaurs flying out of his skull. Richard Nixon is high on lawn gnomes. Thank Lachlann Rattray for SIZE QUEEN. (joey)

Shit Your Pants and Do the Death Dance #3 and #4 $2 or trade

NickKiniris@comcast.net

SYPADTDD (!) is made by a bay area teen who goes to a lot of shows, listens to a lot of new albums, and then records it all in his zine. What I like about the authors record reviews is that he sometimes reviews each song on the album and when referring to an album he doesn’t like, he says stuff like “it’s not really my cup of shit.” The band interviews are funny and entertaining and with each issue getting progressively better, issues 3 and 4 go hand-in-hand, showing that the author has found his niche and even have him showing more of himself through the writings that were not found in issues 1 and 2. Highlights in issue 3 are the cool flyers for upcoming shows and ads for his OWN zine. And, in issue 4, the readers are finally clued in as to what the death dance really is. There’s no way you could flip through the pages of this zine and get bored when both the writing and eye-catching cut and paste style on every page is frantic, fun, and drenched with humor and attitude. I look forward to many more issues and catching up on all the latest bands and shows through the author’s (enthusiastic) point of view.(vanessa x)

Jealouzine: Hellousy is Real #2 $2

jealouzine@gmail.com, jealouzine.tumblr.com

The stories in this Jealouzine are all very personal and very real. Each contributor has written (or drawn) their own experience with jealousy, a topic that’s not so easy to talk about. The stories range from very serious self-help style essays to fun and amusing comics about queer jealousy, where the author creates a new name for her jeawlousy as “chillarity.” My two critiques would be that some of the handwriting and fonts were too small to read but I was able to understand them, and I would have liked to see a male perspective, as this zine had all lady contributors. Regardless, I found each story to be important and inspiring and Jealouzine shows how different our triggers, our feelings, and our relationships can be. This is not just a zine, but a conversation piece and a chance for the reader to reflect on the subject and work through their own feelings of jealousy. If you’ve ever dealt with jealousy or are currently dealing with it and want a DIY therapy session, pick this up today! (vanessa x)

Slingshot Introduction: Issue 111

Slingshot is an independent radical newspaper published in Berkeley since 1988.
Slingshot isn’t like other papers. In the mainstream press, you’ll find glossy articles about things that already make perfect sense. They feature fake controversies that mislead us into believing that we don’t have the power to enact change ourselves, but that we must go through the “proper” channels, like voting, writing letters to the editor, etc, instead of taking to the street. We are not the rulers of the world — we are not in charge — our narrative is broken by the limits of our power. We are engaged in projects that are not yet complete — projects that are being actively blocked by those who have accumulated wealth and use their power to control everyone’s lives while running the planet towards destruction.
We aim to be edgewalkers; working on projects at the edges of capitalism — radical squats, experimental farms, urban guerilla collectives — while striving to extract our psyches from the sway of consumerism. Every few months, we take a break from these projects and come together to create Slingshot. These are the ideas that come to us as we lay awake at night, dreaming of new spaces, reflecting on what we have accomplished.

Our articles can be rough at the edges, the arguments incomplete, but grappling for insight. The arrows of inquiry are shot out into the void, but don’t always reach a target — they burn up in the atmosphere, like so many meteors that never reach the earth.
A number of articles in this issue struggle with identity and privilege in different ways. With each voice, different assumptions are made. Often words of an author become mired in complex tangles that cannot be so readily teased apart. Not every person in the collective nor in our readership identifies with these pieces, but we present them to open a conversation about real positions in our world.
At one point while making this issue, one of us exclaimed “I detest this article!” but as we discussed it, other people saw things in it that were important, and in the end it went into the paper unblocked. We hope that, if you feel strongly, you will join the discussion by sending us an article for the next issue.
***

The centerfold poster was inspired by poetry Sean Swain sent us from his prison cell:
A Handful of Leaves
A prayer for the children of the next Neolithic,
That we leave to them
A field of lilies where a WalMart once stood,
Salmon upstream from the ruins of a dam,
Kudzu vines embracing skeletons of skyscrapers,
Cracked & overgrown ribbons of nameless
super-highways
That you may lay entwined in fields of lilies,
Sustain yourselves on sister salmon,
Climb the vines of kudzu to shelter,
Salt meat on the remains of the highway,
and use this poem for kindling at sundown
So you can spare a handful of leaves
Where the gods write poetry of their own.
***

As the paper went to press, we unpacked a huge truck of 2013 Organizer calendars, which is how we fund this paper. Last spring, we decided to make a version of the Organizer for smart phones since so many people use them instead of paper calendars nowadays. We have a good idea of how we want it to look but we’re still looking for someone to write the code, so if you know how, contact us. We need someone with follow through and the time and skills for a paid gig. Target completion date; Jan. 1, 2013.
***

Slingshot is always looking for new writers, artists, editors, photographers, translators, distributors, etc. to make this paper. If you send something written, please be open to editing.

Editorial decisions are made by the Slingshot Collective but not all the articles reflect the opinions of all collectives members. We welcome debate and constructive criticism.

Thanks to the people who made this: Angie, Ant Claire, Coleen, Dana, Darin, Enola, eggplant, Gnatalie, Jasmine, Jesse, Joey, Jonathon, Julia, Kermit, Lew, Kilroy, Samara, Sandy, Solomon, and all the authors and artists.
Slingshot New Volunteer Meeting

Volunteers interested in getting involved with Slingshot can come to the new volunteer meeting on Sunday December 16, 2012 at 4 p.m. at the Long Haul in Berkeley (see below.)
Article Deadline & Next Issue Date

Submit your articles for issue 112 by January 19, 2013 at 3 p.m.

Volume 1, Number 111, Circulation 20,000
Printed September 28, 2012

Slingshot Newspaper
A publication of Long Haul
Office: 3124 Shattuck Avenue
Mailing: PO Box 3051, Berkeley, CA 94703
Phone (510) 540-0751 • slingshot@tao.ca slingshot.tao.ca • fucking twitter @slingshotnews

Circulation Information
Subscriptions to Slingshot are free to prisoners, low income and anyone in the USA with a Slingshot Organizer, or $1 per issue or back issue. International $3 per issue. Outside the Bay Area we’ll mail you a free stack of copies if you give them out for free. Each envelope is one lb. (9 copies) — let us know how many envelopes you want. In the Bay Area, pick up copies at Long Haul or Bound Together Books in SF.

Slingshot Free stuff
We’ll send you a random assortment of back issues of Slingshot for the cost of postage: Send $3 for 2 lbs. Free if you’re an infoshop or library. Also, our full-color coffee table book about People’s Park is free or by sliding scale donation: send $1 – $25 for a copy. slingshot@tao.ca / Box 3051 Berkeley, 94703.

If last issue on mailing label says #111, contact us or be deleted!

Please note: If you handwrite an address here and drop it into a post box, it will not magically get delivered for free. Instead, it will get returned to Slingshot and the post office will charge us $2.50 per copy.

Hot Dates

October 18 – 22
Radical Mycology Convergence – Port Townsend, WA radicalmycologyconvergence.com

October 19 – 21
Mountain Justice Fall Summit Rock Creek, WV www.mountainjustice.org

October 20 • 12 – 6
Southeast Zine Fest – St. Charleston, SC southeastzinefest.com

October 21 • 7:30 pm
Long Haul Oral History project on The Mission Yuppie Eradication Project – 3124 Shattuck, Berkeley thelonghaul.org

October 26 • 6 pm
San Francisco Critical Mass Halloween bike ride – dress up/gather@Justin Herman Plaza

November 9 – 11
Boston Anarchist Bookfair – Simmons College bostonanarchistbookfair.org

November 9 – 11 • 8 pm
East Bay Bike Party – start location TBA eastbaybikeparty.wordpress.com

November 10
Carrboro, NC Anarchist Bookfair carrboroanarchistbookfair.wordpress.com

November 16 – 18
Protest School of the Americas – Ft. Benning, GA soaw.org

November 21 • 7:30 pm
Long Haul Oral History project on The 1999 protests that Shutdown the WTO – 3124 Shattuck, Berkeley thelonghaul.org

November 23
Buy Nothing Day in N. America (Nov. 24 in UK)

December 1 • 11 – 6 pm
East Bay Anarchist Bookfair – Conversations & Books- Oakland, CA eastbayanarchist.com

December 8 • 10 – 5
East Bay Alternative Book & Zine Fest – eastbayalternativebookandzinefest.com

December 8
Humboldt Anarchist Bookfair – near Eureka, CA humboldtgrassroots.com/hg

January 19 • 3 pm
Slingshot article deadline for issue #112

January 20
Application deadline for the Montreal International Anarchist Theatre Festival (May 21/22) anarchistetheatrefestival.com

March 16 – 17
Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair – San Francisco new location 14th & Mission bayareaanarchistbookfair.wordpress.com

Creative, disruptive and loud – State Parks and wild places need de-colonization, too

The weekend of Nov.12-13 over 300 people occupied Hendy Woods State Park in southern Mendocino County, CA, one of the last remaining public access old growth redwood groves in the state. The park is slated to be closed as of July 2012 along with 70 other California state parks due to budget constraints. Occupy Hendy Woods! stated: “We demand a re-prioritization in state budgeting which favors long-term thinking over short-sighted panic-driven ‘solutions.’ We want a stable budget which favors people, land and public services over corporations and banks. We refuse to sit back and watch our park destroyed by neglect and misuse. Short term measures, driven by a budget crisis we the 99% did not create, will steal our natural heritage unless we do something about it. We will not let this park close. Let’s get creative, inspired and loud!” The local organizers want to network and help inspire others to occupy state parks and other wild places in need of protection, contact occupyhendywoods@gmail.com. An occupation of China Camp State Park in the Bay Area is being planned for January 2012, contact fuschiafringe@gmail.com.

An open letter from our comrades in Egypt

To all those in the United States currently occupying parks, squares and other spaces, your comrades in Cairo are watching you in solidarity. Having received so much advice from you about transitioning to democracy, we thought it’s our turn to pass on some advice.

Indeed, we are now in many ways involved in the same struggle. What most pundits call “The Arab Spring” has its roots in the demonstrations, riots, strikes and occupations taking place all around the world, its foundations lie in years-long struggles by people and popular movements. The moment that we find ourselves in is nothing new, as we in Egypt and others have been fighting against systems of repression, disenfranchisement and the unchecked ravages of global capitalism (yes, we said it, capitalism): a System that has made a world that is dangerous and cruel to its inhabitants. As the interests of government increasingly cater to the interests and comforts of private, transnational capital, our cities and homes have become progressively more abstract and violent places, subject to the casual ravages of the next economic development or urban renewal scheme.

An entire generation across the globe has grown up realizing, rationally and emotionally, that we have no future in the current order of things. Living under structural adjustment policies and the supposed expertise of international organizations like the World Bank and IMF, we watched as our resources, industries and public services were sold off and dismantled as the “free market” pushed an addiction to foreign goods, to foreign food even. The profits and benefits of those freed markets went elsewhere, while Egypt and other countries in the South found their immiseration reinforced by a massive increase in police repression and torture.

The current crisis in America and Western Europe has begun to bring this reality home to you as well: that as things stand we will all work ourselves raw, our backs broken by personal debt and public austerity. Not content with carving out the remnants of the public sphere and the welfare state, capitalism and the austerity-state now even attack the private realm and people’s right to decent dwelling as thousands of foreclosed-upon homeowners find themselves both homeless and indebted to the banks who have forced them on to the streets.

So we stand with you not just in your attempts to bring down the old but to experiment with the new. We are not protesting. Who is there to protest to? What could we ask them for that they could grant? We are occupying. We are reclaiming those same spaces of public practice that have been commodified, privatized and locked into the hands of faceless bureaucracy, real estate portfolios, and police ‘protection’. Hold on to these spaces, nurture them, and let the boundaries of your occupations grow. After all, who built these parks, these plazas, these buildings? Whose labor made them real and livable? Why should it seem so natural that they should be withheld from us, policed and disciplined? Reclaiming these spaces and managing them justly and collectively is proof enough of our legitimacy.

In our own occupations of Tahrir, we encountered people entering the Square every day in tears because it was the first time they had walked through those streets and spaces without being harassed by police; it is not just the ideas that are important, these spaces are fundamental to the possibility of a new world. These are public spaces. Spaces for gathering, leisure, meeting, and interacting –these spaces should be the reason we live in cities. Where the state and the interests of owners have made them inaccessible, exclusive or dangerous, it is up to us to make sure that they are safe, inclusive and just. We have and must continue to open them to anyone that wants to build a better world, particularly for the marginalized, excluded and for those groups who have suffered the worst.

What you do in these spaces is neither as grandiose and abstract nor as quotidian as “real democracy”; the nascent forms of praxis and social engagement being made in the occupations avoid the empty ideals and stale parliamentarianism that the term democracy has come to represent. And so the occupations must continue, because there is no one left to ask for reform. They must continue because we are creating what we can no longer wait for.

But the ideologies of property and propriety will manifest themselves again. Whether through the overt opposition of property owners or municipalities to your encampments or the more subtle attempts to control space through traffic regulations, anti-camping laws or health and safety rules. There is a direct conflict between what we seek to make of our cities and our spaces and what the law and the systems of policing standing behind it would have us do.

We faced such direct and indirect violence, and continue to face it. Those who said that the Egyptian revolution was peaceful did not see the horrors that police visited upon us, nor did they see the resistance and even force that revolutionaries used against the police to defend their tentative occupations and spaces: by the government’s own admission; 99 police stations were put to the torch, thousands of police cars were destroyed, and all of the ruling party’s offices around Egypt were burned down. Barricades were erected, officers were beaten back and pelted with rocks even as they fired tear gas and live ammunition on us. But at the end of the day on the 28th of January they retreated, and we had won our cities.

It is not our desire to participate in violence, but it is even less our desire to lose.

If we do not resist, actively, when they come to take what we have won back, then we will surely lose. Do not confuse the tactics that we used when we shouted “peaceful” with fetishizing nonviolence; if the state had given up immediately we would have been overjoyed, but as they sought to abuse us, beat us, kill us, we knew that there was no other option than to fight back. Had we laid down and allowed ourselves to be arrested, tortured, and martyred to “make a point”, we would be no less bloodied, beaten and dead. Be prepared to defend these things you have occupied, that you are building, because, after everything else has been taken from us, these reclaimed spaces are so very precious.

By way of concluding then, our only real advice to you is to continue, keep going and do not stop. Occupy more, find each other, build larger and larger networks and keep discovering new ways to experiment with social life, consensus, and democracy. Discover new ways to use these spaces, discover new ways to hold on to them and never give them up again. Resist fiercely when you are under attack, but otherwise take pleasure in what you are doing, let it be easy, fun even. We are all watching one another now, and from Cairo we want to say that we are in solidarity with you, and we love you all for what you are doing.

Comrades from Cairo. 24th of October, 2011.

Book and Zine reviews

Conspiracy to Riot in Furtherance of Terrorism: The Collective Autobiography of the RNC 8

Edited by Leslie James Pickering

Published Oct 2011

Arissa Media Group

www.arissamediagroup.com

In the days leading up the 2008 Republican National Convention, police raided homes, rallies, and public parks, arresting the eight young activists who organized the RNC Welcoming Committee. While there were many groups facilitating protests of the convention, the Welcoming Committee was explicitly anarchist/anti-authoritarian, and operated on a leaderless model. After their arrest, the organizers were charged under the Minnesota Patriot Act with “conspiracy to riot in the second degree furtherance of terrorism.” Since then, many of us have rallied in support of the RNC 8. But who are these eight extraordinary revolutionaries? And what can they teach us?

This book chronicles the lives of RNC 8 members in their own words. They tell their stories, recounting formative childhood moments, the development of radical ideals as young adults, and the organization of the Welcoming Committee. They also discuss their experiences of other actions, adventures traveling the country, and dealing with informants. An great book for anyone involved with activism, providing inspiration and useful internal critique. (samara)

Node Padjomo – Summer 2011

Po Box 2623

Bellingham WA. 98227-2632

This year was declared “The Revenge of Print” by some and if you want to catch a whiff of it you can check this shit out. Though this one doesn’t focus on zines entirely so much as it covers Tape Trades, Mail Art and other resources. So really it might be construed as a splinter group out to get you to use the post office before it goes the way of video stores. I especially appreciate how it is hand made with trippy layouts, and how it comes out methodically three times a year. Next deadline is November 15th. And if you want to further investigate zines check out your local library, or find Zine World, Xeography Debt or Maximum Rock & Roll. (egg)

DAYGLOAYHOLE, Issue #1

benpassmore.blogspot.com

benPassmore@rocketmail.com

When a porning oogle spills beer on his laptop, the computer morphs into an evil overlord that blows up half the world and enslaves most survivors. Out from the rubble marches a lone hero by the name of No Limitz: a katana-totting gutterpunk with a badass dog and his name tattooed to his forehead. No Limitz doesn’t give a shit about saving the world–just about filling his belly–and perhaps it is his very lack of ideology that makes him immune to the evil computer’s powers of enslavement. As No Limitz wanders the disseminated landscape in search of grub, he is forced to fight his way through roving bands of bloodthirsty cops, mutant scarbo ‘rough bears, and various minions of the digital overlord. Created by the illustrator of the Raging Pelican, every page of this comic is statured with traveler jokes and hilarious details, inviting the reader to slow down and take it all in. I laughed my ass off at least five times while reading the fifteen pages–and I rarely laugh when I read. If you liked Brandon Graham’s Multiple Warheads, you’ll royally dig DAYGLOAYHOLE. (samara)

Patriot Acts: Narratives of Post-9/11 Injustice

Compiled & Edited by Alia Malek

Published Sept 2011

McSweeney’s, Voice of Witness Series

voiceofwitness.org

Meet Adama, a sixteen-year-old Muslim American who was seized from her home by the FBI on suspicion of being a suicide bomber. And Nick, a senior at Ponoma College who was arrested when he tried to board a plane with English–Arabic flashcards in his pocket. And Rana, a Sikh man whose brother was gunned down outside a gas station in the first reported hate murder after 9/11.

Released on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, Patriot Acts is the latest installment of McSweeney’s Voice of Witness series. It contains the first-person accounts of eighteen people who have been subject to human and civil rights abuses in the wake of 9/11, from discrimination to torture to FBI surveillance.

Written simply and clearly, this book is highly accessible and deeply moving. Don’t be put off by the heavy subject matter: in spite of so much abuse and injustice, the narrators are brimming with hope. If you are having trouble explaining why you are radical to your liberal friends and family members, hand them this book. (samara)

VEGAN: Ethics and Nutrition

C_best82@yahoo.com

Strike up the band! The movement now has another tract of front line animal rights ideas to join the small army of propaganda that already exists. This recent document though seems to directly respond to the spate of anti-vegan backlash—mostly from such books as the Omnivore’s Dilemma and The Vegetarian Myth. The arguments seem clear-headed and at times joyfully snotty. I mean really why take such assholes as Michael Pollan seriously?—unless he’s in conversation with an uptight vegan purist. Thankfully this zine isn’t a put off. Though much of the knowledge is from books and internet factoids there is an underlying love for animals motivating this one. There are lots of pictures to warm you up with. The facts are stated and people can join the revolution and are not made to feel less if they don’t. (egg)

WARMER

aidankoch.com

gyunyunyu@hotmail.com

Seattle zinester Aidan Koch splays the gentle fraying of the human spirit in a dreamlike collage of words and line drawings. Faces fade into horrific scribbles, empty word-bubbles erupt from parted lips, chronology unwinds. Unnamed characters sit on porches guzzling two-buck Chuck, stretch out on beaches, and search for warmth in the spaces between gestures and words. An inverted hand motif seems to imply that every action manifests inwardly, as if, perhaps, the real narrator of the zine is some unconscious mind reveling in the lingering imprints of human experience. Fragments of oblique dialogue propel the reader along on this journey: “Some things will never be the same. Bones. And lungs…” This zine spawns more questions than answers as it motions towards those deeper truths for which we have no symbols or pictures. (samara)

The unpermitted zone – anarchists defy leftism in the Philippines

About 40 anarchists wearing masks vandalized and disrupted downtown Manila near where the Philippine State of the Nation Address was held July 25. Anarchists acting without leaders were small in numbers in comparison to around 8000 authoritarian-leftist protesters, some of whom got food or money to rally in a permitted zone — wishing for their demands in conjunction with corporate media and state institutions who fuck up the lives of millions of people in the archipelago. These are everyday reflected in the unprecedented growth of poverty, ecological destruction, homelessness, unemployment, hunger and other miserable conditions most of the inhabitants of the country endure.

Massive numbers of riot cops with batons and shields faced the authoritarian left in a typical-protest ritual. Every time is another rallying cry of pacifism, persuading the masses to another form of government, wishing it will happen one day. Of course, they could not get near the Hall of Congress at the back of Sandiganbayan (office of the Ombudsman), where the president (Benigno Aquino III) proudly addressed his accomplishments. The state and the left know each other well. Each of them is a ruling and authoritarian form. They are a bunch of leftist politicians building their nests in congressional bodies making laws and profit at the expense of the obedient citizen.

When the anarchist demo began, we reclaimed the streets and disrupted the normal flow of traffic. It was an unexpected moment for most of the authorities. As the cops watched the permitted zone to control the leftist protestors, they were shocked when they saw anarchists marching against the flow of the permitted march. Our main banner read “There is no change in continued reform. Anarchist revolution is the solution. Destroy hierarchy. Defend ecology. End poverty.”

We were loud even without a megaphone with our screams, drums and brave passion. We handed out leaflets and threw paint bombs at buses covered with advertising. We covered the permit zone with graffiti, stickers and circle A symbols directed against the state and capitalist oppression. In front of UCPB bank we set off firecrackers and protested.

Fighting the political death machine by disrupting the State of the Nation Address was a new tactic for us–the local version of disrupting the WTO, JPEPA, ASEAN, APEC and other capitalist trade talks, which are ruining the world and dooming its inhabitants to annihilation and destruction.

It was war from our hearts. It was spontaneity. There were no arrests.

People’s Park – the only thing that can make it work is work

People’s Park

As construction continues on a massive 620-unit University of California (UC) dormitory across from Berkeley’s People’s Park, the whirlwind of controversy that has hovered over the Park since its’ inception got stirred up again in August by the Telegraph Business Improvement and Development Association (TBID). They released a letter calling the park “a detriment to both the business and general community” and claiming the park is “a conduit for criminal activity and [ ] an unsafe, unpleasant place to visit.”

The letter asks UC to use their police force to hassle activists and “homeless” people who use the park and to prohibit free food sharing at the park. It called for a total redevelopment of the park using guidelines laid out by a corporate landscape architect’s design study, commissioned by UC at great expense 4 years ago and immediately relegated to the waste bin by most Berkeley residents. It calls for the destruction of improvements constructed by volunteers and installation of security cameras and lighting. The ultimate goal: gentrification of the park and elimination of non-consumers.

People’s Park in Berkeley has been contested ground since it was joyfully and cooperatively constructed — without permission — on a vacant lot owned by the University of California (UC) in 1969. Thousands of freaks and regular people worked to make an ugly and neglected lot beautiful — an act of creation, hope and reverence for the land and the beings who use it and a rejection of the private property system that values profit over use. After several weeks of construction, the university brought in police to crush the park, leading to rioting, one death and 150 wounded when police fired live ammunition into crowds. Governor Reagan ordered the National Guard to occupy Berkeley. Two years later, rioters destroyed a fence around the site and it was reclaimed as a park.

Since then, the university has always claimed to legally own the land on which the park sits, but many Berkeley residents reject this claim as covered in blood and thus void. Over the years, Berkeley people have practiced “user development” of the park — park users have constructed gardens, a free speech stage, free clothing boxes, bulletin boards, benches and tables, and users try to maintain the park. User development has always been frustrated by the University, which has repeatedly sent in police to tear out improvements. In a dense student neighborhood near campus, the park is one of the few pieces of ground where you don’t have to spend money — open to everyone regardless of wealth or social status. East Bay Food Not Bombs has served in the park five days a week for 20 years, and has become as much a fixture of the culture of Telegraph Avenue as any of the for-profit businesses that operate there.

The TBID letter caused a backlash and was embarrassing to some merchants — perhaps because it expressed some of their secret thoughts too openly. Park activist @RT thinks the letter controversy can be a useful kick in the pants for complacent Berkeley radicals who’ve forgotten about the park:

“After failing to pass an ordinance in the Berkeley City Council last winter prohibiting sitting or lying on the sidewalk (mainly spearheaded by TBID), this most recent failure of the Berkeley bourgeoisie to bully the least fortunate is heartening in several ways. For instance, after a many decade hiatus, People’s Park Volunteer Activist Committee is now holding regular meetings at the Grassroots House, 2022 Blake St., on alternate Thursdays at 7pm. We are also doing work parties in the park on alternate Sunday afternoons.”

He continues: “Every bit of volunteer effort that you invest in People’s Park is ultimately invested in alternatives to capitalism. Because of this, People’s Park in many ways defines Berkeley, gives it personality, uniqueness, vibrancy, and funk (not to mention honesty — a necessary ingredient of free speech.) If People’s Park was an anomaly at its’ inception, it is even more so in the midst of what is now an ultra-corporate urban environment. The fact that it is still there is an utter miracle, and a testament to the tenacity of this community of resistance. This tenacity, and sheer stubborn resistance is the reason why we will never go to a bank to get some money so we could landscape that place neat as a pin.”

@RT adds: “Unfortunately, another defining factor of People’s Park has been disfunctionality, perhaps almost the definition of it . . . and the only thing that can make it work is WORK. We really need to dedicate ourselves to that place if we are going to have a useful organizational structure in place in which to facilitate user-development. This is the time to invest ourselves as anarchist organizers in creating a truly democratic, consensus-based non-profit organization that promotes volunteer activism in People’s Park, now and for the future.”

In another development, anarchists have just begun a weekly anarchist liberated space / assembly every Sunday at noon inspired by the spaces occupied by anarchists in Greece. For info check berkeley.anarchyplanet.org/

Slingshot Issue #106 Introduction

Slingshot is an independent radical newspaper published in Berkeley since 1988.

Is making Slingshot – or engaging with any alternative project – more like planting a garden, or more like harvesting one? In other words, do we do this because we’re hoping it will somehow change the world and make the future better, or are our motivations more about how this project changes our lives right now? Our many forms of resistance – protests, building workers collectives, getting off the grid – have to nourish our souls and give us opportunities for creativity and freedom while we’re doing them for them to be sustainable and worth continuing.

Making the paper isn’t our job nor are we forced to do it out of a sense of duty or obligation. Participating is one way we can spend our days that it is engaging and social. Actually, it’s a blast. A big part of its sustaining relevance is the way it helps weave webs of community – drawing different scenes and different types of people together in interesting and new ways. A world without bosses or consumers is a world where people do things not because of a separate payoff, but out of the inherent pleasure of the action itself. Throwing your life into the counter-culture by joining a collective or starting your own is not certain to save the planet, but it may save you from boredom and meaninglessness.

Moving into the summer season opens up possibilities for travel, fresh tomatoes, rowdy forest gatherings, lazy warm afternoons, swimming and meeting new friends. Despite the harsh events of the world – wars, ecological disasters, injustice and oppression – we can’t forget to enjoy what is still possible.

We had a moment of stress at a meeting a few days before going to press when articles on some important topical events didn’t materialize: anything about US military action in Libya, something on union busing in general and protests in Madison in particular, analysis about the revolts in North Africa and the Middle East. We wanted these articles but in the internet age, it often makes more sense to rely on electronic media to keep up on rapidly changing events. Our niche as an on-paper publication is arguably different.

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Some people have asked about our landlord’s bankruptcy – are we going to lose our space? The court process is continuing and it is still too early to know. And what about our lawsuit against the FBI for the police seizure of all our computers in 2008? Our lawyers and the government filed motions to end the case recently, but the judge is still considering them. And they say collective process is too slow to be “practical”. . .

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If you get multiple copies of the paper in the mail for free distro, please let us know if you move. The post office has started charging us $12.50 for each returned envelope!

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Slingshot is always looking for new writers, artists, editors, photographers, translators, distributors, etc. to make this paper. If you send something written, please be open to editing.

Editorial decisions are made by the Slingshot Collective but not all the articles reflect the opinions of all collectives members. We welcome debate and constructive criticism.

Thanks to the people who made this: Abhay, Alena, Anka, Bird, Brian, Dee, Eggplant, Heather, Jayson, Julia, Jesse, Kathryn, Kermit, Ramona, Samara, Sandy, Sunny, Thomas and all the authors and artists.

Slingshot New Volunteer Meeting

Volunteers interested in getting involved with Slingshot can come to the new volunteer meeting on Sunday, August 28, 2011 at 4 p.m. at the Long Haul in Berkeley (see below).

Article Deadline & Next Issue Date

Submit your articles for issue 107 by September 17, 2011 at 3 p.m.

Volume 1, Number 106, Circulation 19,000

Printed April 28, 2011

Slingshot Newspaper

A publication of Long Haul

Office: 3124 Shattuck Avenue

Mailing: PO Box 3051, Berkeley, CA 94703

Phone (510) 540-0751

slingshot@tao.ca • slingshot.tao.ca

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Circulation Information

Subscriptions to Slingshot are free to prisoners, low income and anyone in the USA with a Slingshot Organizer, or $1 per issue or back issue. International $3 per issue. Outside the Bay Area we’ll mail you a free stack of copies if you give them out for free. Note: they come in 1 lb. packages – you can order 1 package or up to 6 (6 lbs) for free – let us know how many you want. In the Bay Area, pick up copies at Long Haul or Bound Together Books in SF.

Slingshot Back Issues

We’ll send you a random assortment of back issues of Slingshot for the cost of postage: Send $3 for 2 lbs. Free if you’re an infoshop or library. Also, our full-color coffee table book about People’s Park is free or by sliding scale donation: send $1 – $25 for a copy. PO Box 3051 Berkeley, CA 94703.