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jeff ford
Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 10:05 pm:   

Check this link out, supplied by Sammy. This is some scary shit. Get the dope on what the big plan is.
http://pnacrevealed.com/
Best,


Jeff
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Cornelis Alderlieste
Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 10:26 am:   

Crap! Thanks Jeff...now I know for sure I won't be able to get some sleep. Damn! :-)
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jeff ford
Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 07:51 pm:   

Cornelis: Sorry, that makes two of us now.

Best,


Jeff
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, May 26, 2003 - 11:02 am:   

This stuff has been out there since the Regan administration, and is one of the main reasons that the GOP hates Clinton so profoundly -- his election stalled the Master Plan. This is the sort of thing I was referencing a while back when I was talking about the protests. Now is really the time to protest, but the left seems to lose its juice when the TV cameras go away. Central America has been and remains a laboratory for this plan. I see it in action down there in minature all the time. The only thing to do about it is to speak to this kind of stuff in one's work.
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jeff ford
Posted on Monday, May 26, 2003 - 01:46 pm:   

Lucius: This stuff may have been around from the time of Regan but I wasn't aware of it as it is spoken of here. I've been playing catch up with a lot of these ideas and concerns since the Iraqi situation nudged me awake. I have been engaging my students in discussions about these issues in my WORK as a teacher. But, when it comes to fiction, I'm afraid the majority of pointed political fiction bores me to tears with its cant and predictability. I think, and this may be what you mean, that allowing yourself to give free reign to one's imagination in one's ART is the finest political statement one can make. No manner of sanctimony, topicality or remuneration will persuade me to curtail this process in favor of the mundane. As Lester Bowie says -- The true revolutionary is not apparent.
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Claude Lalumière
Posted on Monday, May 26, 2003 - 04:30 pm:   

Jeff:
And then again there's Lucius's "Surrender" -- surely one of the most powerful pieces of fiction I've read. Didactism bores me also, but in Lucius's case politics is clearly a matter of deep passion, and it shows.
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jeff ford
Posted on Monday, May 26, 2003 - 07:01 pm:   

Claude: I don't think anything I said above would show that I would disagree with you on that point.
Lucius is first and foremost a writer who takes time with the characters and works the craft to get the writing just right. If there is politics involved in the story either overt or less overt (how could there be none?) it is not the primary thing that initially engages me in the fiction.
Best,


Jeff
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Claude Lalumière
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 03:30 am:   

Jeff:
you say:
"If there is politics involved in the story either overt or less overt (how could there be none?)"
Thanks for saying that. I totally agree. There's a Canadian magazine called This Magazine, whose motto -- which I adore -- is "because everything is political"
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jeff ford
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 04:20 am:   

Claude: Shepard (have to use the last name here when I get into my analysis head) is kind of the exception rather than the rule. Usually what's going on in the lives of his characters resonates with whatever political "message" there is in the story, so it doesn't get stale. That novella of his I recently read, Floaters, is a voodoo horror story, first and foremost, and any dark fantasy fan would enjoy the read, but I detected a strong "political" impulse in it as well. It was all part of the package and entertaining to boot. Usually, the political fiction I read doesn't go quite so well.

Best,

Jeff
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Claude Lalumière
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 06:02 am:   

Jeff:
I can't wait to get FLOATERS. I assume it's gonna come in the next batch of books PS sends me. Lucius is really on a roll these days. He'd been quiet for a few years, but all of a sudden he's everywhere with tons of great material.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 07:10 am:   

Claude,

you sent me an email recently and somehow my whole inbox got wiped out. I wonder if you could resend it -- I never got to read it.

Thanks...and thanks for the nice things you said. Pretty much everything is, I believe, political.


Lucius
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 09:48 am:   

Jeff, I sense some irritation. I wasn't trying to one-up you here, I was simply trying to establish that this has been a long-term goal among a certain group of people and was responsible for a lot of the right's antipathy toward Clinton. There was a big to-do about the American Century prior to the 92 election and there are reports that it caused great divisiveness among the GOP during the campaign. What I meant by my comment about "work" is that it strikes me that in one's life one should attempt to make one's politics an active principle and that anyone who has a public forum and feels strongly about things poliical has a great opportunity to speak out. There was nothing cautionary or reproving in that statement. I don't know who Lester Bowie is, unless you're talking about the guy who plays trumpet for the Chicago Art Ensemble. I understand what he's saying about being subversive and how that's effective....and I agree. But "the true revolutionary is not apparent..." -- that sounds a bit exclusionary for my tastes. I know plenty of men and women, from Zapatistas in Mexico to FMLN members in Salvador, etc, etc., who have been very up-front in their politics, who have put their lives on the line, and if Bowie is suggesting that these people aren't "true revolutionaries," then as far as I'm concerned he's full of crap. Sometimes true revolutionaries are very apparent. Sometimes they bleed all over the pages of history.

Twice now you've used "sanctimony" in your posts to me (once, if I recall, the term was "holier than thou.") Though it may not be necessary, let me clarify something. I'm not sanctimonious. I'm pissed off. Not at you. I'm pissed off at this fucking country. I'm pissed off that we as a nation have let ourselves get slothful and ignorant and manipulable. I'm pissed off at the left wing in the US, because I believe they've blown their credibility and have allowed themseves to become marginalized. I'm pissed off that illegally harvested Honduran lobsters are allowed to be imported and sold at incredibly low prices as a blind for cocaine traffic, thus enabling a condition that approaches slavery to persist among the people of the Mosquito Coast. I'm pissed at the Neo-cons that seem to be spawning on college campuses everywhere. I could go on at some length about the things that piss me off, but my point is this: There's not a sanctimonious bone in my body. In public or private, I'm not given to innuendo -- I try to say plainly what I feel, so if you think I am slighting you in some way by my remarks, please disabuse yourself of the notion. If ever there comes a point of disagreement between us, I'll preface my remarks with "I disagree." I was merely chiming in with information that I thought might be of interest.

Actually I do differ with you on one point, but it's a matter of approach and not of tremendous significance. Art, to me, is the mundane thing, and not politics. The idea of artists being an elite, thieves of fire, promethean figures, sublime entertainers.. well, I guess I have a more Marxist view. I see art and the imagination as tools to employ in the service not just of story and character, but in the interest of things I consider of consequence, and that, more often than not, includes politics. But that's just me, you know. I don't demand or even encourage anyone else to buy into this. It's just how I feel about what I do. Obviously not everything I write is overtly political. You mention FLOATER. What
started that off was the adulation that was given to the police by the public and press after 9/11 and I was wondering how long it would take for the glow to fade and people to start complaining about them again (about two years, apparently, because complaints are now starting to flow in). So it wasn't what I would term a political story. On the other hand, I have a story in Polyphony called "The Same Old Story" that has a distinct political agenda. Fortunately life presented me with a character that allowed me to tell the story in a way that braided the politics in with my character's obsessions. I understand this is still too much politics for some -- there are a number of critics who react to such pieces with Oh God There He Goes Again. But I'm happy to annoy them.

On the other hand, I don't intend to annoy you. I think you're a nice guy and a fine writer, and as I said, I'm not offering sanctimony, not on any level.

Peace out.


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Jeremy Lassen
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 11:02 am:   

Lucius… Once again, your anger over the current state of America mirrors my own. I go back and forth… is it a problem of corporate controlled media opiating the masses, or is it a problem of the “character” of the American people?

In some ways, GW Bush is the perfect representative of America… A wealthy, spoiled, selfish and self-righteous asshole who has been coddled and protected all of his life… Someone who actually believes his shit doesn’t stink… somebody who has been protected from the consequences of his disastrous choices and actions…

On a global scale, this description is a perfect match for America as country, and as a description of its citizens.

No wonder his “approval” ratings remain high… He is the living embodiment of “the ugly American.” Rignt now, most of America is pretty ugly, and Bush re-inforces the idea that this is okay… that this is the “natural order” of things… that personal choices made on the micro level have no impact, bearing or consequence on the rest of the world.

Conservatives rhetoric often makes a big deal about “personal responsibility.” But try telling a “conservative” who drives a gas guzzling, pollution spewing SUV to take responsibility for their choices and actions(Pay for the medical care of the people that your car’s emissions gave asthma to, for example…), and suddenly their tune changes to one of “individual rights to do whatever they want” (Unless of course, you want to marry someone of the same sex, etc etc).

The “SUV Problem” in America is not really a problem… but it IS the Canary in the mineshaft. It is indicative of, and reflects so much of the ignorance and hypocrisies that have come to define America of the last 30 years.

My friends wonder why I get so pissed off when I see an SUV drive by… My family wonders why I am so ashamed that my mother just bought a brand new SUV…. I’m pissed off and ashamed because every time I see one, I see all the injustices, idiocies, and hypocrisies that Lucius noted above, and I see hundreds of others.

Who is responsible for fascism? Who bears the responsibility? The manipulative leaders, and masters of their propaganda machines? Or the “silent majority” who fall into line because its easier to not think, and believe what they are told? History will judge us, and it will not judge us kindly.

-jl
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jeff ford
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 12:55 pm:   

Lucius: Not irritated and not down on what you are saying at all. And my use of sanctimony was only for you the first time way back when I was unclear what you were talking about. Bu6t it is a word I keep close to the surface, living in a neighborhood that is a hot bed of fundamentalist christians and working at a college. What I was doing was making clear my distinctions as to how I viewed writing about these political ideas. You gave me the idea and I went with it. Actually, as I said, I thought you might be agreeing with me to some extent there. As far as the art vs. politics goes, its a moot point for me as far you go as I have amply shown above. You manage both like one of those plate twirlers. Marxism sounds interesting, but I don't know enough about it really, or about the kind you are talking about to make a judgement.
That's something I need more info on. So no, I just blather and make grandiose statements. Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain. With most of these ideas, after the first few feet, I'm in way over my head anway. Keep dropping messages. And Fast Runner was beautiful. Stay well.

Best,


Jeff
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JeffV
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 01:10 pm:   

Yes, Lucius is to "political" fiction what Angela Carter was to "feminist" fiction. The political does not become didactic, but rises above the didactic in the service of the imagination.

Jeremy--I too get very angry about SUVs and the continuing selfishness of this country.

JeffV
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Claude Lalumière
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 01:50 pm:   

JeffV:
I know you admire Carter, but what little of her I've read I've found rebarbatively didactic...
So don't you go dissing Lucius by comparing him to her! (insert sarcastic smile)
As for SUVs... hate 'em. Hell, I'd ban cars in cities altogether. I don't know how to drive, BTW. I'm a walker.
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JeffV
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 01:53 pm:   

Claude:
As you know, we differ substantially on our analysis of many writers. If you're referring to "The Passion of New Eve", I'll agree. Otherwise, it's knives at dawn.

JeffV
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Mastadge
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 02:09 pm:   

"I don't know how to drive, BTW. I'm a walker."

Ha! So I'm not the only one!

Well, I do know how to drive. But I don't like driving, and I don't do it often. I just figured it would be handy to have the know-how in the event I have to, say, get someone to a hospital, or rush to help someone, or deal with any other emergency.
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Claude Lalumière
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 02:20 pm:   

Many of my friends have never learned how to drive. I think it's a Montreal thing. (Everywhere else in Québec they think you're a lunatic if you don't drive.)
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Mastadge
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 02:31 pm:   

Yep. Americans also tend to look at you funny if you mention that you don't drive. Also, people are getting cars younger and younger. It amazes me how many of my friends and peers in college and even high school(!) had cars - some nice ones, too. How in the world does a college student afford cars? Would I be able to afford a car if I stopped buying books?
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Rick Bowes
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 03:57 pm:   

I don't drive. Did when I was a kid. But not in the 37 years that I've lived in Manhattan. So that's three of us in North America. Not really enough for a concerted movement. Yet.
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GabrielM
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 04:55 pm:   

I don't drive either, except my wife to distraction....
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Rick Bowes
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 07:43 pm:   

Four! And one a lawyer! Our numbers swell!!
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Luís Rodrigues
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 07:53 pm:   

No car here either. I only drive some people crazy, myself.
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jeff ford
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 07:55 pm:   

Luis: Hey, are you there? I'm having a problem with my e-mail. I can receive messages, but I can't send them. I checked the SMTP settings but they seem right. Can you think of anything off hand it could be?

Best,

Jeff
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S. Hamm
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 09:22 pm:   

Gents,

Doesn't matter how long the information has been around (and the Pax Americana foreseen by PNAC has not been around "since Reagan"; it's a think-tank vision for a world in which the US is the only global superpower, and hence, necessarily, a post-USSR world; even so, it's more than a decade old, dating back, in its current formulation, to 1992, when Poppy Bush spiked it as too radical, too impractical). The relevant detail is that not one American in a thousand is AWARE of the information.

First priority, therefore, is to disseminate the information as broadly as possible, so that the tiny minority of citizens who might actually give a rat's ass can see what their leaders have planned for them and the rest of the world. Original documents preferred, naturally, because if you try to paraphrase what the neocons come right out and say, you'll be dismissed as the worst kind of tinfoil-hat conspiracy theorist.

Put the information out there first, so that people can find their way to it. Art comes next.



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jeff ford
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 09:56 pm:   

Sam: Shit, I thought you were here to tell me how to fix my e-mail. Great stuff this week, by the way. The stuff I posted above, the Byrd speech, even wobbly Bob Graham coming out of the woodwork.
Achh, I've been scolded for my art twice in one day. Where's my tinfoil hat? I was never a politics first or seconder or did I say I thought it was boring. I just don't like it too overt in my fiction. Seen too much that does bore me that way. I actually find the stuff I'm reading lately very exciting, some times darkly so, sometimes just glad there was someone out there to get it right.
Was gonna write Sam, but the e-mail's fucked.

Best,

Jeff
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Ellen
Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 10:28 pm:   

I don't drive either. Keep my license up to date though--for identification and just in case.
There's no reason to drive in NYC. And more reason not to.
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Luís Rodrigues
Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - 06:29 am:   

Hi Jeff,

No idea what could be wrong. What kind of error message (if any) does the server return? If you didn't fiddle with the settings, then it's probably the SMTP server that's down. Better check with your ISP, or whoever provides your e-mail. Sorry I can't be of much help.

Best,
Luís
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jeff ford
Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - 06:33 am:   

Luis: I know it's near impossible if you don't have all the info. I was desperate, though. Thanks for responding. I've got the phone in my hand and am on hold now trying to get through to the internet people. Thanks again.

Best,

Jeff
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Rick Bowes
Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - 12:47 pm:   

Yeah, keeping a car in Manhattan is more hassle than conducting an extramarital affair. And doing both at the same time? Guaranteed madness.
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Ellen
Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - 04:43 pm:   

Right Rick. You'd be driving around for hours looking for parking....;-)
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, June 09, 2003 - 07:25 pm:   

Here's what truly scares me: I don't know if any of you have been watching the cable news channels lately...but I keep the TV on when I'm working long hours, and the last couple of days the argument over the missing WMDs has abruptly shifted from being a discussion of whether President Bush misled the nation concerning the existence of these weapons, to one that engages the issue of whether the CIA lied to Bush about the weapons or misled him because of their incompetence. And not one voice has been raised to suggest that this might be administration-sponsored spin designed to absolve Bush. They've changed the story. That's how things get done, that's the mechanism by which the government of the USA has been allowed to become distant and uninfluenceable by the people they're purported to support. They control the primary means of influence. Within hours, if they're not already, friends and neighbors will be parroting this nonsense, and the right wing will turn the moment to their advantage by using it to push for a beefing-up of the CIA budget. It's a feedback system. Beautiful. A machine.

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jeff ford
Posted on Monday, June 09, 2003 - 08:11 pm:   

Lucius: That's very interesting. I've been following this pretty closely on my own and through great dispatches of articles from Sam. If I remember correctly, the CIA had actually gone somewhat public before the war with a host of reasons why it was not a good idea. Of course, they lasted in the media for a day and then were gone. Where's my Ken Starr 60 million dollar investigation of this issue, though? So far, what the WOMD has come down to is two Winnebagos that at one time might have been mobile weapons labs. Questions, anyone? Did you see the article by john Dean comparing this to Watergate?
On another note -- did you see the recent story where they were claiming that the guy who fragged those two guys in the tent with a handgrenade was gay and that it was a love triangle? The story, again, came and went. All I remember was how that was the claim the Navy made when that stale dynamite blew the turret off that battleship. They said the explosion was caused by a lover's quarrel between two secretly gay sailors. What it actually was was that the fucking gunpowder had been laying around in the sun on a barge for years and had become unstable. But this case seems very similar. Claim the problem was caused by gays in the military, that way they cover for themselves and make the point that they were right to want to ban gays from serving. If anyone has other info on this one, I'd be interested in seeing it or hearing it. Maybe I'm off course with my interpretation of the details.
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jeff ford
Posted on Monday, June 09, 2003 - 08:22 pm:   

Lucius: Saw a poll on Netscape the other day. 65% voted that they didn't care if the govt. had duped them about the Weapons of Mass Destruction. They were still behind GW. I think perhaps they are missing the larger implication of the whole thing. Although even the smaller implications are pretty dreadful.

Best,

Jeff
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S. Hamm
Posted on Monday, June 09, 2003 - 11:55 pm:   

Lucius,

The story is gaining traction, and the cable shows you've been seeing probably represent a direct response to this article from Saturday's Washington Post. In the last couple of weeks several journalists and commentators (Kristof, Josh Marshall, Atrios, etc.) have identified and attempted to disable the nascent "Bush-was-fed-bad-intel-by-the-CIA" meme. The intelligence community is righteously pissed off by it, which explains the sudden profusion of leaks by spooks to the press.

In light of the poll Jeff cites, it's interesting to compare American press coverage of Bush with England's treatment of Tony Blair. The British spooks, following standard CYA protocol, reportedly kept detailed transcripts of their exchanges with 10 Downing Street, and are threatening to make them public if Blair's lackeys continue to blame them for "faulty intelligence." You can almost see the red-hot poker as it enters Mr. Blair's ass, Big Eddie II-style, here.
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Michael Cisco
Posted on Tuesday, June 10, 2003 - 01:44 am:   

Those two Winnebagos? They were, my sources tell me, trucks designed to produce hydrogen for use in artillery balloons - part of a system sold to them by (wait for it) the English in 1987! I guess I'm supposed to believe limey intelligence couldn't make out an ENGLISH TRUCK? Did the hydrogen canisters have little clown faces on them, too?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, June 10, 2003 - 06:51 am:   

Jeff,

I'm convinced that 65% of the country would look the other way if the locusts descended and the waters turned to blood.

As for the gay soldier, who knows? Once the armed forces get a hold of you, it all disappears into a fog, But no doubt, the story is more complicated.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, June 10, 2003 - 06:55 am:   

Sam,

Thanks for the links. I'll read 'em after I get through work. I assumed what I was seeing was a response to something -- it was weird, kind of like watching water from a faucet gradually turning pink.

Blair with a poker up his butt, huh? I'm ready.

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Rick Bowes
Posted on Tuesday, June 10, 2003 - 10:02 am:   

Blair bothers me more than Bush does. It seems like he should be smarter than this. With Bush it's more like a cat killing birds, nature taking its course in a brain the size of a marble.

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