January 25, 2018

Gullah: Triumph of the human spirit

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jane Stillwater @ 7:22 pm

I visited the Slave Mart Museum in Charleston, South Carolina the other day. So much human misery was on display there that tears instantly came to my eyes. Slavery was the American equivalent of Auschwitz and Gaza — systematic torture, degradation and death based solely on impersonal factors that people were born with.

In the historic Old South, slaves were routinely beaten, starved, kidnapped and raped. 50,000 slaves tried to run away every year. Thousands tried to fight back. Can you blame them? Despite their extreme exploitation and misery, however, millions of them submitted to their own enslavement. Why? PTSD. Too shocked and psychically injured to do anything else.

According to museum records, there were three slaves to every White person in Charleston back in the day. “So why didn’t they rebel?” you might ask. Ah, but they did. There were over 250 slave rebellions during this dreadful time. But the bottom line was that these enslaved and dehumanized men, women and children mostly suffered from an earlier, harsher version of Stockholm Syndrome. Veterans returning from Iraq weren’t the first Americans to suffer from PTSD.

Slaves in south Carolina were called “Gullah”. And after the horrors of slavery were finally over, the Gullah people’s nightmare still continued in the form of lynch mobs and Jim Crow.

And yet. Somehow still the Gullah culture has survived even despite the John Killhouns and the Dylan Roofs — and even despite the high-end boutiques that have replaced Gullah businesses on King Street.

To the Gullah people of Charleston today, Black lives still matter — even after having been haunted by a PTSD strong enough to reach its cold, ghostly fingers down to them over the span of hundreds of years.

PS: I’m currently reading two books that clearly illustrate the sad effects of slavery on African-Americans — even today: Matt Taibbi’s “I Can’t Breathe” and Jill Leovy’s “Ghettoside” They both come highly recommended by me.

January 18, 2018

Climate deterioration: Snowdrifts in Charleston, SC

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jane Stillwater @ 3:02 pm

One huge fatal flaw in the human psyche is that all too many of us seem to be incapable of grasping the Big Picture. In Charleston, South Carolina, however, the Big Picture is currently being shoved down our throats — like it or not. “We had seven inches of snowfall here the other day,” a long-time resident just told me. “Unheard of!” What caused it? Climate deterioration. Weather pollution.

For crying out loud, how much more further proof do we need before we can actually start seeing the Big Picture here? That Santa Claus has just moved his North Pole workshop down to sunny Carolina? That the winter Olympics are now being held right here on Meeting Street?

Over a hundred years ago, Charleston built a gigantic seawall to keep the Atlantic Ocean out of the front yards of its charming antebellum mansions. Well, in the next 20 years Charleston is going to have to quadruple the height of these “lowcountry” seawalls — unless it wants to equip its visiting tourists with scuba equipment in order to view Rainbow Row.

Climate deterioration. Weather pollution. Big Picture. Got it yet? Apparently not.

You just gotta love Charleston. It’s clearly the most beautiful and charming city in America. And I will miss it when it is gone — just like I will miss New York, San Francisco, Tokyo, Mumbai, Amsterdam, Shanghai, Sydney, Miami, Puerto Vallarta, Vancouver, Seattle, Boston and Buenos Aires.

Climate deterioration/weather pollution. This is the most vital Big Picture that our limited human psyches are clearly missing right now (aside from the fact that “war” will kill our environment too).

PS: Who profits most from denying that climate deterioration is even a thing? Surprisingly, it is American weapons manufacturers — the largest source of weather pollution there is.

For instance, that phony “war” on Syria alone has already subtracted years and years from the life expectancy of the entire human race. Not to mention all the things that go “Boom” in Afghanistan, Iraq, Ukraine, Libya, Yemen, Palestine, the former Yugoslavia, etc. Each of these senseless and barbaric attacks on vulnerable countries have been incredible bonanzas for American weapons manufacturers — but could be extinction events for the rest of us.

Cold Museum


January 13, 2018

Imperialism + Colonialism = Shitehole countries

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jane Stillwater @ 10:39 am

You don’t have to be Einstein to figure out this equation (not that anyone in Washington is these days).

After being ruthlessly battered, plundered, sacked, assaulted and robbed for hundreds of years by heartless and unbelievably brutal European and American slave traders, imperialists, colonialists and neo-colonialists, it’s a wonder that any countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America even function at all.

Never forget that the main reason that so many poor immigrants from other countries leave their homes and their loved ones behind to come to Europe and America is that they are simply following the trail of their stolen stuff.


January 7, 2018

Brainwashing, Paul Haggis, Scientology, you & me

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jane Stillwater @ 10:49 pm

Here’s a thing: Professor Mazim Qumsiyeh just pointed out that America has vigorously supported the right of Iranians to protest their government but…. “When a reporter asked a US spokeswoman about the right to protest in Palestine against Israeli occupation, she was at a loss for words. Land of hypocrisy indeed.”—Jagjit-Singh

Well, sure, America is the land of hypocrisy — but mostly it is the land of brainwashing.

For instance, I am currently reading Lawrence Wright’s excellent book, “Going Clear”. It’s about the various brainwashing techniques used in Scientology — most of them are repetitious, dangerous and/or violent. After over 30 years of faithful servitude, however, Paul Haggis finally decided to escape from this mess. The result? Suddenly a whole bunch of women showed up, suddenly accusing him of all kinds of sexual mayhem. Bet every single one of those women is a brainwashed Scientologist. Read Wright’s book to find out why I should think that.

Shame on Scientology if/when they used such a worthy cause as “Me Too” in order to bring down a whistle-blower. As a woman (and one who has been a victim of attempted rape myself), I totally resent this evil use of such a just and noble cause.

So what’s my point? Scientologists use brainwashing? Well, duh, of course they do. But who else uses it? And why? We Americans are constantly being brainwashed every waking hour of our lives. Every single hour of the day and night there is a constant barrage of media telling us what to think and do. “Go to war,” they tell us. “Buy a car. Take a drug. Vote against your own best interests.”

According to Wright, Scientology apparently has a whole worldwide network of basements and “bases” where Scientologists are manipulated, beaten, starved and/or brainwashed until they submit to its version of the Stockholm syndrome. When one is actually trapped inside the bubble of Scientology, it becomes increasingly difficult to see any other worldview — because no other version is allowed inside.

But that’s just small potatoes compared to the whole worldwide network of basements and “bases” where America beats, starves, manipulates and/or brainwashes the minds of its Americans until they too submit to our very own version of the Stockholm syndrome. And when one is actually trapped inside the bubble of American propaganda, it becomes increasingly difficult to see any other worldview — because no other version is allowed inside.

And as for why we are constantly being barraged by all this propaganda? What is the end-game of all this constant brainwashing? Money and power. But mostly money. Our money — becoming theirs.

PS: I just signed up to attend this year’s BoucherCon event, being held in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater/Tampa area next September. Such a deal! Not only do I get to attend my favorite book convention but also St. Pete is famous for its historic Hotel Vinoy, 25% of Clearwater is owned by Scientology and Tampa is where Leonard Peltier is being held in federal prison for a crime he didn’t commit — but that we have been brainwashed into thinking that he did.


January 4, 2018

Madam Jane predicts — disaster ahead!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jane Stillwater @ 4:59 pm

“Let’s face it,” Madam Jane said to me as we strolled through thousands of white grave markers in the Golden Gate National Cemetery the other day. “America just can’t continue spending over 60% of its income on murdering people abroad. It just can’t. No country can afford that kind of luxury item for long.”

Hmm. She might have a point.

“Just look at all these rows and rows and rows of dead people,” she said. “Lives wasted on trumped-up ‘wars’, sure, but mostly money wasted too. It’s like buying a new Cadillac in order to throw it in a trash compactor while your young children starve. It’s immoral. It pisses me off.”

That could be true too. You don’t just run out and buy a Caddie when there’s no food on the table and the rent’s coming due.

“And now America is trying to pick a fight with Russia, North Korea, Iran and probably China, while also carrying on ‘wars’ and proxy ‘wars’ in Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan, Africa and Central and South America as well. This is all going to end badly, mark my words. You’d better start stocking up on toilet paper and soap.”

Actually I worry more about running out of food and not staying warm — but then that’s just me.

“Just look at Israel,” M.J. continued. “it is a microcosm of the USA, sort of a mini-me. it also spends most of its money on weapons too — and 70 years later, it’s still at ‘war’ with Palestinians who can only throw stones to fight back. In the last month alone, nuclear-armed Israel has jailed over 400 children for throwing stones and having knives.”

I also know that 700,000 Palestinians have spent time in Israeli jails. Don’t Israelis have better things to spend their money on? Apparently not.

“And look at Saudi Arabia, yet another American mini-me. It spends most of its money on supporting ISIS and bombing defenseless Yemen, right?”

I suppose so.

“And 70 years from now, the Yemenis will still be fighting back to the last man — and with stones too, if that’s all they’ve got. But by then the fabled Saudi oil wealth will have all run out. The Saudis are just not planning ahead either. Obviously they can’t see into the future like I can.”

Apparently not.

“And the same holds true for the American macrocosm. We also have spent 70 years on murdering people in foreign lands instead of taking care of people at home. And our time is almost up too.”

“Sounds like you’re talking about moral proximity, ” I replied. “I just read something about that — where it’s your moral duty to take care of those around you first.”

“Damn straight,” said Madam Jane. And then she sighed. “I truly wish that I could stave off the disaster that’s coming our way. But I can’t.”

PS: Speaking of disasters and/or keeping warm, I am leaving for Charleston, South Carolina in a few days. Why? Because, silly me, last summer I thought Charleston would be a nice place to go and be warm during the winter of 2018. And then the “Bomb Cyclone” hit. Yikes! It was 25 degrees in Charleston this morning.

I don’t need Madam Jane to tell me that my future ahead looks cold.


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