- Shut Down the Control Units (5/13/2018)
- We Demand Our Grievances are Addressed! (5/11/2018)
- Build a United Front for Peace in Prisons (4/20/2018)
- We Demand Our Grievances are Addressed in Texas (3/13/2018)
- We Demand Our Grievances are Addressed in Oregon (2/01/2018)
- Robbery by the FLDOC Canteen System
- Censors in Their Own Words - May 2018
- Forced Prison Labor in Texas: Exposing the Fraudulent Good Time/Work Time Credit Scheme
- The Politics and Economics of Mass Incarceration
- Marxist Economics and Amerikan Mass Incarceration: Revisiting ULK 8
WARNING: FBI Tracks our Visitors
December 25, 2017: MT11 Available in FullA while back a comrade sent us a high quality scan of MIM Theory 11: Amerikkan Prisons on Trial - Guilty!. It's a very large file, but our collection of pdfs of MIM Theory is now complete. We've also updated/fixed our censorship reports page, which we've recently been doing in a more anecdotal format. Other small fixes to the website this week as well.
November 04, 2017: Cloudflare Warning
A few days ago we began delivering our website through the Content Delivery Network(CDN) called Cloudflare. This was a tough decision to make. It it essentially undoes the work we did last summer to encrypt connections to our website with SSL. Because cloudflare is now between our server and you, it must decrypt your requests and then pass them on to our server. This allows for a man-in-the-middle attack. You will also notice that our website now places cookies on your computer. This is also done by Cloudflare.
So why use Cloudflare? If you're a regular reader you may have noticed that our website has been down a lot lately, most recently for almost a week. This was due to a Distributed Denial Of Service(DDOS) attack, when a bunch of computers send requests to your server in order to overload it. After looking into this, we found Cloudflare to be the best option to mitigate against this at this time. It reportedly does a great job at this, even with its free service. So we are thankful for that. DDOS protection that does not act as a Man-in-the-Middle would increase the costs of hosting our website by many times.
We will continue to explore options to balance the need to keep the information on this website available to the general public, while protecting the security of our readers to the best of our ability.
September 18, 2017: New Search Bar
Another benefit to DuckDuckGo is that they offer an onion service, making your searches even more anonymous. So if you're using Tor (as you should be!) you can select the .onion search option instead of .com.
We hope this helps our readers find what they are looking for more efficiently. Between our 10 years of publishing Under Lock & Key and the archive of the etext.org site, we have about 3 decades of quality content to search through. Enjoy!
August 07, 2017: Secure Email
If you were following the news with the Edward Snowden leaks there was a lot of talk about "metadata". The new release of Torbirdy for Thunderbird combines with the power of Enigmail to help address some of this problem.
We often get emails asking us about setting up secure communications. As long as we're relying on email to communicate, Thunderbird with the Torbirdy and Enigmail plugins is probably your best bet. Enigmail makes GPG more user-friendly. By using this software you are not depending on your service provider for security.
August 06, 2017: New Bitcoin AddyWe have changed our
donation address for bitcoin due to the recent fork. If you have sent us bitcoin in the last few days let us know. Thank you to those who have sent us bitcoin in recent months!
July 23, 2017: New Video for August
We have reposted a copy of a video version of our interview with one of the authors of [email protected] Power and the Struggle for Aztlán. The original creator deleted it from youtube. We'd rather not send our readers to imperialist controlled content distributors anyway.
This video is being posted as part of the USW campaign to commemorate the Plan de San Diego in August 2017 and will be used by those who have pledged to participate in the commemoration on the outside.
June 10, 2017: Lumpen Class Analysis Out
MIM(Prisons) began to draft a book on the lumpen class a few years ago. We found a gap in the theoretical material on this subject and realized that our observations about this class are a unique contribution to Marxist theory. A lot of research was done, particularly on defining the lumpen class within U.$. borders, but due to competing projects and limited time, the book was put on hold. As we gathered materials, wrote and discussed the various aspects of this project, we kept coming back to the fact that the very premise of the book hinges on a class analysis that focuses on the First World lumpen as potential agents of revolution. This pamphlet contains that class analysis.
Download our newly published Who is the Lumpen in the United $tates?
May 02, 2017: How to Donateon donating securely and effectively
For the last year we've been posting more specific ways for people to contribute to our work on our website. Many tasks posted remain undone. But we have received some response and will continue to post ideas there. One that we want to clarify is how to contribute materially.Here is a list of ways to contribute in order of preference:
- cash: U.S. dollars are by far the easiest thing for us to use. Some have expressed concern about mailing cash. But it is really no more risky than mailing stamps, or blank money orders. Internationally there may be more risk. If you want to prevent theft use large bills and put them in a mylar bag or aluminum foil.
- cryptocurrency: This is the most secure way to donate. But not as easy for us to use as cash. Using Bitcoin or Monero will ensure your money reaches us. Using Monero will ensure that no one knows you donated to us. Fees involved should be similar to sending a money order, but a little harder to get started for the newbie.
- stamps: This is how most prisoners donate. We use lots of stamps. Forever stamps and 1 ounce stamps in particular. But most of our postage is not paid with stamps, so we do have limits on what we can use. Recent donations have kept us supplied, but not oversupplied.
- blank money orders, gift cards: As mentioned above, there is little benefit to these over cash, and they are more of a pain to use. But if it makes you feel better than sending cash, we'll make use of them. Generic gift cards are obviously best. Staples gift cards would be our second choice.
- books: This is the least efficient way to contribute materially. But if you have access to book sales, used book stores with cheap dictionaries, MLM and national liberation/anti-imperialist lit, pick some up and mail them to us media mail to save money.
Generally, we'd prefer people put in work before money. But with enough money coming in from enough sources we can also convert money into work. So get in where you fit in. MIM(Prisons) members put in a lot of both!
April 04, 2017: New Server - More UptimeOver the last month prisoncensorship.info has had a lot of down time. We have recently migrated to a new server platform, which we hope will eliminate these problems. We apologize for the inconvenience and will continue to rebuild the reputation of this site.
February 19, 2017: Free Books to Prisoners Update
In the last couple weeks we sent out about 200 pieces of literature via our Free Political Books to Prisoners program, in addition to our bimonthly mailing of Under Lock & Key, which reaches thousands of prisoners across the United $tates.Here are the three best ways to support Free Political Books to Prisoners:
- Donate your bitcoin (scroll down to donations section)
- Donate U.S. postage stamps. Forever and Additional Ounce (penguin) stamps are easiest to use, and we're usually short on Additional Ounce stamps.
We used about a third of a recent generous donation of Additional Ounce stamps on these mailings.
- Send Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin, Mao books. We are almost out of Mao books. Check out local book stores and book sales and send them our way. We also always need dictionaries and welcome any other books that we recommend. Softcover books are much better than hard.
November 12, 2016: New ebooks
We recently updated our Resources page with a bunch of digitized books that we distribute to prisoners, mostly for free. Please consider donating to help cover printing and postage costs.
November 12, 2016: Maoist Glossary Online
October 22, 2016: BPP 50th PackIn honor of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the formation of the Black Panther Party this weekend we have released a new and improved 50th anniversary edition of our Defend the Legacy of the Black Panther Party study pack, including MIM's reprints of the the Black Panther newspaper.
October 03, 2016: Listen to InterviewIn addition to reading the transcript, you can now listen to or download the interview with one of the authors who participated in the writing and editing of the book [email protected] Power and the Struggle for Aztlán.
August 22, 2016: Bitcoin AcceptedAs we explore ways to better engage our online readers, we've added a bitcoin donation button to our get involved page.
August 21, 2016: RSS updated
July 01, 2016: SSL Finally Here
Let's Encrypt has eliminated any excuses for not using HTTPS for your website. HTTPS connections use SSL to encrypt the flow of data between your computer and the computer hosting our website. MIM(Prisons) has joined the millions of other websites that have implemented HTTPS in recent months. Before now, profits have stood in the way of expanding security on the web.
HTTPS encrypts any data that you send to or receive from our server. Since our website does not involve logging in or sharing sensitive information, this has not been crucial for us. But it does add some privacy, as well as some security in the fact that you are connecting to our server and not someone pretending to be us. HTTPS does not hide the fact that you're visiting our server. You should be using TOR to hide the fact that you read our website regularly.
April 12, 2016: More Ways to Get InvolvedTo complement our proposal to stop working on this website, we've been working on beefing up our page on getting involved.
February 12, 2016: RSS feed fixedOur RSS feed is back in good working order after having some problems. Don't depend on corporate middlemen to get your news feeds. Get them straight from the source!
September 12, 2015: New Book Out Now
Our new book, [email protected] Power and the Struggle for Aztlán by a prison study group, is now available.
April 24, 2015: [email protected] Power Pre-Orders
Our new book, [email protected] Power and the Struggle for Aztlán by a prison study group, will be in print in June 2015. Pre-orders are now available.
October 13, 2014: abolishcontrolunits.org Back Online
On 9 October 2014 www.abolishcontrolunits.org came back online. It went down on September 18 due to a failure to renew the site in time. We apologize for the oversight and delayed access. The website is a project of MIM(Prisons), focusing on one of the most important struggles in the prison movement and probably the biggest violation of humyn rights within U.$. borders. In addition to many timeless resources, we are currently updating our inventory of control units across the country. This is the most complete inventory available and we depend on crowd-sourced data to keep it that way. So please share any info you have and stay tuned for new data that will be added over the coming months.
August 05, 2014: New Book - Chicano Power
Just added more info and sign up to order Chicano Power and the Struggle for Aztlán.
March 22, 2014: MIM Theory & Legal updates
We recently added much of the content of MIM Theory 11: Amerikkkan Prisons on Trial to our site, as well as a spanish version of MIM Theory 10: Labor Aristocracy. There are significant errors, typos and mis-translations, but we believe that this is important material and do not want to wait to release the hard work of one of our translators. Anyone who wants a free copy of MT10 in English is welcome to submit edits to help create a better Spanish translation.
Finally, we've set it up so the most recent version of our censorship guide for prisoners is available as a PDF from our legal page.
February 11, 2014: Listen to AirAmarteifio Feb. 17 @ 6pm MT
Listen to Dialectics next week as a comrade discusses MIM Thought with host Nikolai Brown and updates us on the pulse of the anti-imperialist struggle from behind bars.
November 06, 2013: New Email Address
We have a new public email address on our contact page. We updated our PGP key to reflect the new address, but the key is the same so if you already have our public key that will work.
November 02, 2013: New Resources Online
A while ago we updated out legal resources page to include info on the MIM(Prisons)-led Prisoners' Legal Clinic, and a few guides put together by comrades in that group. Those links are now fully functional, and future guides, which are in the works, will be posted there.
We are always adding material to our resources page. Recent documents include a bound volume of the original MIM Notes, MIM Theory and other founding documents of our movement, The Capitalist Roaders Are Still On The Capitalist Road: The Two-Line Struggle and the Revisionist Seizure of Power in China and an introductory study pack on the labor aristocracy question.
Finally, we do still have some complete sets of MIM Theories available for $75 (see previous post).
August 23, 2013: Get All MIM Theories $75
**Last Chance to Get MIM Theory Complete Set**
MIM Distributors is about to run out of a couple of issues of MIM Theory. That means the ability to acquire a complete set will soon no longer be possible. While printed versions have not been available for public purchase for many years, we are making them available one last time. MIM Theory was printed mostly in the 1990s, and was always a controversial and well-respected source of Maoist Theory.
Get one of the last remaining complete sets of MIM Theory for $75 postage paid in the U.$., $85 elsewhere. All proceeds go to our prisoner support work. This includes all 13 published magazines (issue 1-14, where 2/3 was a combo issue). While supplies last, you'll also get a printed and spiral bound copy of the first released draft of Imperialism and its Class Structure in 1997, the would-be MIM Theory 15.
NOTE: Most of these journals are available as PDFs from our website. But reading theory in print is much better. Also, MIM Theory is only present in a couple libraries that we are aware of. If you can get a complete set of MIM Theory into a public library, even better.
If interested, you can send payment in the form of a blank money order, U.$. postage stamps, or concealed cash to our PO Box with your address. If that doesn't work for you contact us.
August 22, 2013: Official Alternate MIM(Prisons) Online
We have announced on reddit that our profile there will be an official outlet for MIM(Prisons). This is to mitigate against damage done by future attempts to shut down this website and/or our email. If this site goes down, then you can find us on reddit.
August 08, 2013: Feds Shut Down Our Email
Today the owner of lavabit.com shut down his servers after insinuating that the feds asked him to build a backdoor into his encrypted email service. As a result we are not currently available via email. Stay tuned for updates.
June 18, 2013: RSS Improved and H.W. Edwards edits
We have improved our RSS feed so that it includes more info and shouldn't have problems with Spanish characters. We don't have a lot of RSS readers, but it's a good way to keep tabs on multiple blogs at once.
We also have edited our digital version of H.W. Edwards Labor Aristocracy, Mass Base of Social Democracy to eliminate many typos in the transcription and in the original text.
January 20, 2013: People's Liberation University Winter 2013
If you didn't know, the semester already started. To participate in structured, online study check out: http://anti-imperialism.com/2012/12/25/beginning-january-14th-winter-semester-of-peoples-liberation-university/
September 04, 2012: Listen to Northbay Uprising 9/6 @ 5pm
May 25, 2012: New study pack on Labor Aristocracy
The latest study pack by MIM(Prisons) is structured around HW Edwards' Labor Aristocracy: Mass Base of Social Democracy, one of the forerunners of MIM Thought on the subject, has been added to our Maoist resources page.
March 16, 2012: Download NEW Pamphlet
The first edition of the Fundamental Political Line of the Maoist Internationalist Ministry of Prisons was released this month. Click the link to download the 18MB PDF.
January 05, 2012: Donations Needed
As of January 2012 we are looking at a shortage of $350 per month for the next 6 months to keep up with expanding Under Lock & Key subscriptions, while maintaining our other projects. While one time contributions help, most useful are regular contributors who can commit to a monthly contribution. Donations of cash, stamps, gift cards, money orders made out to "MIM Distributors" can be sent to:
PO BOX 40799
San Francisco, CA 94140
November 28, 2011: How to Reuse Content from prisoncensorship.info
Following a number of recent requests we have posted a licensing statement on our website. We want you to repost/reprint our stuff, just link back to us or print a citation. And don't make money off our stuff! We rarely sell anything, but we always need money to fund our work.
November 25, 2011: Study Packs Now Available
We've made public a number of the study packs that we use for our correspondence courses on our resource page.
November 13, 2011: Improved ULK Search
We fixed some problems with the search function for our news page. Selecting multiple options in the Advanced Search should work correctly now. Note that the text search will only look for the exact phrase. More complicated/thorough text searches are best done with a third party search engine such as: https://www.ixquick.com/
November 13, 2011: New GPG Key
We have changed our public GPG key on our contact page. We encourage comrades to use GPG/PGP to encrypt communications with us and each other. It's very easy to use and very secure.
September 17, 2011: Volunteers Needed
Volunteer Typists Needed!
Typing is a major limiting factor in expanding our educational programs. All you need is a computer with internet access. Many opportunities for volunteers to learn by getting involved in these projects.
Projects on hold include: prisoners compiling Chicano Liberation study and agitation materials, and a Spanish translation of MIM Theory 10.
Hunger Strike Agitation
Especially in California, we are calling for people to hit the streets in support of the continued hunger strike against torture in the SHU. New fliers will be posted soon. We will try to coordinate people to do outreach in California if you get in touch.
September 06, 2011: Historical Documents added to Archive
Recently we've added documents on the Attica uprising, the Soviet Union and China to the resources page.
August 27, 2011: New Contact Info
We have a new email address, new PGP key and new contact form all available on our contact page. If you can help expand our work get in touch!
Please keep security in mind when contacting us and use an anonymous email address, from an anonymous IP address and encrypt your message with PGP.
July 20, 2011: Order Unlock the Box DVDs
With the campaign to support the food strike initiated in Pelican Bay in full swing, we have had an increase in interest in the documentary film Unlock the Box. Therefore, we are happy to announce that the DVD is now available online through Kersplebedeb.
If you've been waiting to buy the DVD because there was no credit card payment option, now is your chance!
This is a great tool to build solidarity with the California prisoners in your community. If you wish to host public screenings of Unlock the Box the only requirement is to notify MIM(Prisons) of the time and location so that it can be added to the film's web page.
July 19, 2011: San Diego Action on Thurs. 7/21
A supporter has notified us of the following public even in support of the Pelican Bay (and California-wide) Hunger Strike
Thursday, July 21 ? 1:00pm - 8:00pm
San Diego City Hall
202 C STREET
San Diego, CA
THE SUPPORT WILL START AT 1PM AND CONTINUE THROUGHOUT THE DAY- PLEASE SHOW UP AFTER WORK IF YOU WILL BE WORKING THAT DAY. THANK YOU ALL VERY MUCH!!! KIDS ARE WELCOME!!! THIS IS A NON-VIOLENT VIGIL/PROTEST. WE NEED ALL THE SUPPORT WE CAN GET.
June 26, 2011: Bay Area action 7/1: Volunteers Needed
Participation in the food strike in California prisons scheduled to begin July 1, 2011 has expanded to A and C-wings of Pelican Bay and to Corcoran, another Security Housing Unit prison.
MIM(Prisons) and our supporters have been working to mobilize as many people as possible to voice their support for the prisoners demands and not let the state continue to use their tactic of isolation to squash organizing efforts. With many planning to not eat until their demands are met, lack of public oversight could have deadly consequences.
If you can volunteer to help with outreach work or want to host a video screening/talk on this subject, email us to get involved.
June 20, 2011: Event in Montreal on 7/1
Unlock the Box the movie will be featured at an upcoming event in solidarity with the Pelican Bay Hunger strike:
Friday July 1st at 7pm
1918, rue Frontenac
Montreal (metro Frontenac) Free - Tel.: 514 563-1487
February 07, 2011: New Website Rollout
Today we begin rolling out the much delayed new http://www.prisoncensorship.info. Features will continue to be added in the upcoming weeks. Look here (in alerts) for updates.
February 03, 2011: Campaign Updates: Support Needed
Some long overdue updates to our campaigns page are going up. These are prisoner-led campaigns that will become more powerful with additional outside support.
September 01, 2010: 2010 Congress Reports
We have posted our summary report from the MIM(Prisons) congress held this summer. It summarizes the various reports given on our work over the past year or more, and our plans for the future year.
August 17, 2010: Updated Archive
Updated and added some documents from http://www.maoist.ws , which is down and http://www.mimdown.org , which is attempting to restore the old etext.org site. We grabbed some MT's we were missing, but might want to check later if you need other missing documents or dead links from our etext archive.
March 08, 2010: Serve the People Prison Info pages up
A large portion of the visitors to our website are friends and families of prisoners looking for information on the concentration camps where their loved ones are being held. In recognition of this readership and to improve the much needed communication between prisons and the streets we have launched profile pages for each prison system in the united $tates with an assortment of useful info.
December 10, 2009: Oakland & Berkeley events
Friday, December 11
Unlock the Box
Wheeler Hall, UC Berkeley 3pm
Black Dot Cafe, Oakland 7pm
Sunday, December 13
4th Stanley Tookie Williams Legacy Summit
Honor 5 time Nobel Peace Prize nominee Tookie Williams, not hypocritical double-speak. Tookie was murdered, and Alex Sanchez still sits in jail, while Barack Obomber targets poor people across central Asia with mass destruction and gets honored as a "peace maker."
September 19, 2009: Archive Updated and new ULK
You'll notice a new link in the menu to our archive of recommended readings, historical documents, theory and legal reference. We have been slowly updating these pages in recent months and will continue to add materials that we distribute and use in our work. Among other items we finally added a text-only version of the MIM etext archive.
Also be sure to check out Under Lock & Key 10 on Hip Hop and culture.
July 20, 2009: New Censorship report and ULK up
May 16, 2009: 1)Unlock the Box film screenings 2) new ULK out
1) Unlock the Box is a documentary on prison control units with a revolutionary anti-imperialist line. Upcoming screenings can be found at http://www.abolishcontrolunits.org/movie . See info below for upcoming San Francisco event where it will be shown.
2) Under Lock & Key 8 is online
Bay Area STOPMAX presents
UNLOCK THE BOX
DOCUMENTING THE STRUGGLE TO SHUT DOWN PRISON CONTROL UNITS
Thursday, May 21st 2009
6PM Food, Performance & Speakers 7PM Movie Screening
The Name Says it All (speaker: Julie) Control units, as part of the greater criminal injustice system, are used as a way to control certain populations. Working with the Maoist Prison Ministry, Julie has helped coordinate the longest running political education program for prisoners in the united states.
Survivor (speaker: Father Dom) A recent survivor of over 6 years in various Security Housing Units across California, Dom will share personal stories of the effects of long-term isolation on human beings.
Control Units beyond Super Max (speaker: Tommy Escarcega) While never being put in a "Super Maximun Security Prison", Tommy's experience in California women's prisons speaks to the use of long-term isolation far beyond the supermax prisons.
Sensible Housing Unit: AIR The Counter Narrative Society will present this touring performance project that merges irony, facts and audience participation to act, reveal and respond to the effects of prison control units.
Throughout the evening we will have food and drinks, visual art by prisoners and info tables from Bay Area groups providing a multitude of ways to get involved.
UNLOCK THE BOX
is a movie documenting the struggle to put an end to long-term isolation in U.$. prisons that has been waged by prisoners and activists for decades. Starting from the premise that long- term isolation is a form of torture that serves no purpose except the state's oppressive aims at social control, Unlock the Box documents the many forms of struggle that this movement has taken over the years.
Bay Area STOPMAX is a collaborative group of prison activists and organizations working together with the national STOPMAX campaign to build public opinion around the idea that "solitary confinement" is a method of torture, with the goal of ending its use from the county jails to the super maximum security prisons within the U.S. to the military prisons around the world.
For more information about this event contact:
Mission Cultural Center for the Latino Arts - [Theater]
2868 Mission Street, San Francisco CA 94110
Near 24th Street BART
(415) 821.1155 | Wheelchair Accessible
February 17, 2009: Camp Hill campaign, censor report and Control Unit stats
1) Today we got updated campaign info regarding the torture at Camp Hill SMU in Pennsylvania.
2) Our biannual censorship report did not come out last month. We're thinking every six months was overly ambitious. There is news on the censorship front which we will report on soon. Our next report is planned for summer 2009.
February 09, 2009: MIM etext.org archive update 2
Another set of messed up links has been fixed including the first couple hundred issues of MIM Notes.
January 31, 2009: MIM etext.org archive update
We have fixed thousands of broken links in our archive of the old MIM site (see previous announcement). If people find other problems with the archive, please let us know and we will make an attempt to fix them.
We still plan to post zips of the whole archive soon.
January 20, 2009: MIM etext archive
Many of our readers are probably familiar with the old website for the Maoist Internationalist Movement that was located at http://www.etext.org/Politics/MIM. This site contained thousands of valuable documents spanning decades of the movement's work and struggles.
MIM(Prisons) seconds other comrades' surprise that a copy of the site does not seem to exist anywhere else following the closing of etext.org on January 9, 2009. That is why we have posted as much of the old site as we have on our own site as part of a digital archive that we plan to expand in the future with other documents related to both legal battles and to Maoism.
We are still in the process of updating this archive, but it should be done by the end of the week. It should function pretty well as an exact copy of the old site up until February 2008 when comrades launched MIM Lite and allegedly abandoned etext.org. More recently posting had resumed at etext. We do not leave this material off for political reasons, but because we do not have it.
We believe our archive is more complete than others that have been compiled recently, because it was built incrementally and therefore contains old documents that were removed from the site in recent years. But again, it only goes up to February 2008.
December 03, 2008: Camp Hill prisoners need support
We've added a new campaign in Pennsylvania, being led by prisoners who are facing torturous conditions in the Secure Management Unit isolation cells at SCI Camp Hill. We encourage people to support these prisoners' struggle.
This campaign is linked to a project called the Emergency Response Network. These comrades are following humyn rights abuses in (mostly Pennsylvania and Virginia) prisons similar to MIM(Prisons) censorship tracking and campaigns. It is good to see others taking up this much needed monitoring work and we encourage people to check out their campaigns.
November 29, 2008: ULK Print Versions Online/ Call for submissions
Under Lock & Key: the voice of the anti-imperialist movement from behind bars just marked its one year anniversary as an independent institution of the oppressed. You can now download the print version as a PDF from our website. Please feel free to print and distribute.
ULK will continue to be printed and mailed free to prisoners in the united $tates every other month in 2009, with the next issue coming out in January. Below is a call for submissions of artwork, research and articles for upcoming issues:
Issue 6: Gender - MIM line says that gender is not determined by biology, but rather First World biological wimmin are in fact gender oppressors, while the gender oppressed are generally found among Third World biological wimmin and children. Where does this leave prisoners in the u$? What role does gender play in daily life in u$ prisons and what does it mean for our organizing efforts?
Issue 7: The Peace Issue - Maoists are being targetted all over the country for being a threat to security of the ?homeland?, especially in prisons. Meanwhile, the imperialists use divide and conquer techniques to promote violence among the oppressed. Why do many of our people play along? We need to draw the line in the sand and show who is really willing to work for peace and who is not. We want to discuss successful models and plans for promoting peace between lumpen organizations. It?s been done before, and yet it?s needed now more than ever. Send us your stories, art and ideas.
DEADLINE: February 1, 2009
Issue 8: Prison Labor/Economics - A number of prisoners have written in disagreeing with our article, ?Amerikans: oppressing for a living? that appeared in ULK Issue 2, by claiming that prisoners are a source of great profits for the imperialists. While prisoners are being used to subsidize institutions of state repression financially, the reports we have received so far support our assertion that profits are not being extracted from prison labor in the u$ overall. Here?s the questions we are asking prisoners across the country: How many prisoners at your facility? How many of them work? Who do they work for? What work do they do? How much do they get paid?
DEADLINE: April 1, 2009
Issue 9: Migrants & non-citizens in u$ prisons - With prisons, tent cities and militarized zones spreading across the u$ border with Mexico, migrants have been the fastest growing segment of the federal prison population over the last decade. With efforts to curb imprisonment in the largest prison state in the world, non-citizens may be the main reason that the total population keeps increasing. In this issue we will expose what's going on. We want to hear from prisoners who are not u$-citizens and those in states like Arizona and Texas where this boom has been focused.
DEADLINE: June 1, 2009
July 30, 2008: Biannual Censorship Report - July 2008
Get an update on MIM(Prisons) progress reaching prisoners across the united $tates, with improving data and campaign information. read the report
June 21, 2008: Unlock the Box DVD pre-orders
MIM Distributors is working with comrades putting out a documentary video on prison control units, called "Unlock the Box." Since MIM Distributors does not generally serve as a distributor for media outside of prisons anymore, you need to order prior to one of the 2 mailings we have planned for fall and winter of 2008. Pre-orders are already being taken. Information on the movie and it's distribution will be updated at http://www.abolishcontrolunits.org/movie
April 20, 2008: Organizing around Prison Struggles
MIM(Prisons) barely has the staff time we need to run the institutions that we run (a website, newsletter, free political literature program, an educational program, and budding legal work and post-release support). Yet we are not looking to form more branches of MIM(Prisons) on the outside. Instead we are focused on building organization behind bars, and looking for supporters on the outside to help with campaigns and other necessary legwork to build the anti-imperialist prison movement.
We work with prisoners to develop campaigns that meet the needs of the oppressed being targeted by imprisonment. We are limited in our ability to carry out these campaigns to the extent that they often need to be. We usually send one letter to protest an instance of censorship. We should have dozens of letters from that state or region. In many of the states where we are working with prisoners on campaigns, we do not have people distributing fliers, literature and petitions or talking to people on the streets and doing presentations. We could and should.
The functionality of the campaigns section of our website is still not complete, and it is still very short on content. The campaigns we do have up there are important ones that have been initiated by prisoners who are active members of our movement. But in most cases, these campaigns cannot be successfully executed without some real outside support and legwork. People on the outside should be contributing to the campaign pages just as much as prisoners are. We welcome your reports and organizing materials. It is not for lack of issues needing to be addressed that most states don't have active campaigns listed yet, so let us know if you want to get one started in yours.
We won't necessarily get behind any old campaign that has to do with prisons, but figuring out what issues are out there is part of the process for us all to become more effective in our work. In prioritizing prison related struggles, we have focused on censorship and isolation as two of the most important issues threatening politically active prisoners and the future of prison-based organizing, without which, the struggle against oppression in prisons will have no power.
We have put a lot of effort into this website as a tool for documenting and tracking censorship in u$ prisons and are currently working with prisoners in many states to address problems where they are consistently bad. Some comrades are also working hard to develop new research and materials related to the struggle against control units and so-called gang units. For those who are interested in this topic, you may want to look into the upcoming StopMax Conference being sponsored by the American Friends Service Committee (May 30 - June 1).
There are a lot of easy ways to get involved in supporting the work of MIM(Prisons). We need help with typing, writing protest letters, doing research, and from lawyers and law students we need help around legal battles. All of this work can be done from wherever you live, in many cases without leaving your computer. Local prison rights organizers can also help us get the prisoner-initiated campaigns that we promote on the streets in their area and building concrete alliances between prisoners and communities on the outside.
April 19, 2008: Maoist cells, fanclubs and cops
This announcement is for those who read our website because we are part of MIM, and not because they are doing prison work. With the exception of the discontinuation of the organs MIM Notes and Notas Rojas, the Maoist Internationalist Movement, as it has always been defined, still exists. The structure changed a lot a couple of years ago. With the decentralization, we have many groups with their own specific focus and tasks. And as expected, these many groups have developed their ideas in different directions, and in many cases a healthy debate is taking place. We at MIM(Prisons) view this as a good thing, an opportunity for many new flowers to bloom and for those serious students of revolution to develop their own scientific analysis.
We see no progressive role in the creation of a new center at this time. Nor do we see the creation of lists and associations as helping anyone besides the pigs. When someone sets up a blog with a couple articles vaguely parroting Maoism and then tries to do a who's who in the Maoist camp without even making a substantive theoretical critique of the groups in question, one must wonder what the motivations of such sites are. Others have already criticized extensively the trend of fly-by-night blogs and websites who would link to various groups that results in a blurring of lines between those upholding Maoism and those on the revisionist road. In this period of decentralization that we have in the First World today, cells should determine for themselves who they affiliate with and recognize as fraternal. And this should be done when necessary to unite with other cells in struggle, not as a way of building your link traffic or making one feel like your not alone cause you have a couple other half-ass blogs that think you're cool. That's what differentiates a Maoist cell from a Maoist fanclub. There's so much work to be done, that only pigs could find the time to spend creating fanclubs.
Others continue with one-liners disparaging cells that have evolved from the decentralization. These comments are not useful to anyone, and create negative talk around the movement that can be discouraging to the masses. Self-described Maoists should think about what dividing line questions are and focus their efforts to combat revisionism there.
Those who are actually interested in working with MIM(Prisons) should check our next announcement on prison organizing.
January 01, 2008: First Biannual Censorship Report
MIM(Prisons) is ringing in the new year with our first biannual censorship report since launching our website. We will print these reports every 6 months to keep the world updated on the state of free speech in the largest prison nation in the world and to track the progress of our movement.
December 05, 2007: Submit Your Censorship Reports Online
One of the main goals of this site is to bring together allies in the struggle against censorship in u$ prisons. We are working hard to document the struggles that we are currently engaged in and we want to know what struggles you are carrying out so that we might work together.
We now have a public portal for reporting incidents of censorship in prisons. Any organization or individual can report censorship, upload scanned images of documentation as well as the text of protest letters. All submissions must be approved by MIM(Prisons) before they will be available on the public site.
You will need to submit an email address to register with the site. We recommend that you use an anonymous email account and keep security in mind. Once you register you can return and use that same email address to post censorship reports for the same organization (if you are not part of an organization then it will just be posted as an "individual"). Valid email addresses are preferred in case we need to contact you about your submission or want to try to work together in our campaigns.
If you run into any problems with this new feature please let us know.
October 08, 2007: MIM(Prisons) Announced as Independent Cell
In the past year the Maoist Internationalist Movement has taken some security hits and has changed its organizing strategy as a result. One of the significant changes relates to cell-based organizing. With the unveiling of this web site, MIM spins off the prison ministry into an independent cell.The Maoist Internationalist Ministry of Prisons or MIM(Prisons) upholds the MIM cardinal questions and political line. We distribute MIM Notes and MIM Theory and recommend these independent media outlets as well as the MIM web site at etext.org as sources for correct news and theoretical analysis. We carry forward the work of the MIM in the fight against the criminal injustice system.also see: MIM on Prisons & Prisoners
September 28, 2007: Prison Ministry Cell launches its own site
About a month ago the Maoist Prison Ministry went public with our own website. This site is the product of many years of work and input. As we have already begun to attract new readers we want to let you know what this site is and plans to be.
To date, we have been continuously under construction. So please bear with us. As of today, we have complete news and censorship reporting pages that are indexed and searchable. Currently we are working hard to update the content and the technology of the site simultaneously. This winter everything should be put together and we will only have to deal with content.
Coming soon will be a fully functional Campaigns section that will link to censorship incidents and articles and provide agitational materials. Until then those who wish to support our work can check out the example letters that comrades have sent to fight censorship under the incidents of censorship that have been reported. Anyone can write letters and send them to the prison administration. Please email us copies of your letters so that we can post them online and keep track of our cooperative efforts.
We are also working to get allies and potential allies in the anti-censorship struggle to contribute to the reporting of censorship incidents. If you experience censorship from u$ prisons and want to submit your experiences to the site, email us and let us know. We plan to implement a procedure for outside submissions in the near future.