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Under Lock & Key

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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Tax-us Maoist


Don't mess with Tax-us, is the motto they use,
subliminal injections, that our struggle will lose.
Don't play into that Billy Box shit,
Anything will crumble, if strategically hit.

In the State of Tax-us, it's the Tax-us two step. One forward, two steps back!
Pitting brown against white, which turns white against Black
To keep colors warring on each other,
So all groups are incapable to witness brothers.

I read the article, of fledgling plight,
Driven to point of frustration strategically attempting to fight.
Comrades gathered on a yard, to voice grievances to the man,
A peaceful sit-down was their ultimate plan.

Their custody is minimum, the industry has everything to lose,
many are unsure of tactics riot squads will use.
The days are gone where they'd brutalize one man's race,
Now they'll spray you with chemical gas and fold you up as a suitcase.

But majority tomorrow, they'll file to chow hall, sit where they're told,
to be fed rubbery pancakes that are usually cold
Then be rushed back to wings fueled for a productive day!
Forced to meet quotas, compensated no sort of pay.

Afraid to be written a bogus disciplinary case,
To be held in check, while confined to this place.
You're housed in concrete boxes! like sperm specimens in a culture dish,
Checked by intimidation, you're afraid to resist.

Then informers infiltrate, exposing what you plan to initiate,
forcing all backwards to stagnated state.
You're one man, in many who burn with a vision we can achieve,
Now, we must convince other contingents to unconditionally believe.

Now locked in Ad-Seg we passed on the revolutionary flame,
You let them extinguish it so who you gonna blame?
What can they take from us now? or futuristically do,
So, ask yourself, are you capable to follow thru?

Comrades are all I got left, recently I kissed parole goodbye!
To charge the State of Tax-us it's our final do or die
I'm going down swinging, gonna give one hell of a fight
It's up to us comrades to unite for human rights

One voice alone, can easily be quelled,
They'll strip you of everything to be locked in an Ad-Seg cell.
But multitudes of voices they're forced to hear,
United comrades of all nationalities is what southerners fear.

They try to silence our voices, ignoring our needs
Are you afraid to be beat down, for the struggle, to bleed?
There's a fever spreading across Tax-us, they cannot contain
Comrades who are infected become immune to the pain.

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[Organizing] [Theory] [ULK Issue 36]
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Resistance From Within

I recently received the level 2 study group. One question it asks is "Does MIM(Prisons) recruit members from prison? Why or why not? Do you agree? Explain." My answer, in part, was "As prisoners we need MIM(Prisons) to not be subjected to our oppression, which helps to protect the integrity and Third World viewpoint of the MIM." I realized that what I was referring to was resistance to what I once read a comrade call "bourgeois brainwashing." I then set about to understand the psycho-social dynamics of this bourgeois brainwashing and how we must form resistance from within. I also examined the role played by MIM(Prisons) and the tie to how we view the Third World.

Bourgeois brainwashing uses the psychological phenomenon of dehumanization to facilitate the deconstruction of our value systems. Used as a defense against painful or overwhelming emotions, dehumanization entails a decrease in a person's sense of his own individuality and in his perception of the humanness of others. This dehumanization of others allows for their maltreatment to be acquiesced in with relative freedom from the restraints of conscience or feelings of comradeship.

Dehumanization has two interrelated processes: self-directed dehumanization, which relates to self-image and denotes the deterioration of an individual's sense of his own humanness, and object-directed dehumanization, which refers to one's perceiving others as lacking in those attributes that are considered to be most human. These two forms of dehumanization are mutually reinforcing: reduction in the fullness of one's feelings for other human beings diminishes one's own sense of self; any reduction of the humanness of one's self-image limits that person's capacity for relating to others.

You see, the first step is for the pigs to beat down our self-worth and self-respect. Once we lose sight of our own humanness, we cannot see it in others. We then have complacence, even to the point of being helpful, while the U.$. empire oppresses, occupies and exploits the Third World nations. Why should I care? The Third World proletariat are less than human anyway. I didn't put them in the situation they are in, they put themselves there, therefore, they deserve it!

Thus, oppression necessarily rests upon dehumanization, which diminishes and morphs our value system. We can resist dehumanization by holding on to our self-worth and self-respect, and our communistic value system that brought us to participate in the MIM. This takes resistance from within; from within the prison and from within our own selves.

There is a process of resistance called counter-socialization. To keep our values insulated from the conformist bourgeois values shoved down our throats while incarcerated is no easy task. It requires a stabilizing point of reference and behavior patterns that harmonize, to some degree, with our own values. These are two distinct aspects: a supportive reference system or group, and behavior patterns that offer protection against dehumanization of self and others. Our values or attitudes may not be consistent with the behavior expected or even forced upon us, which makes us vulnerable to a deep psychological discord with accompanying stress and pull toward equilibrium to reduce this mental discord and stress. Unless we are careful, our values may subtly change to match our behavior, and the brainwashing has begun.

For us to keep our communistic values from dying or fading away, it helps (it may even be essential) to have value sharers to whom we can refer for guidance and support. This reference group or individual can be other persons within the prison — a formal or informal counter-group. Such a reference system has the advantage of being accessible, relevant (everyone in the same location), and standing out in its interpretive scheme. Our counter-values can also be sustained through contact with or reference to people outside of the prison system. This support has the advantage of not being caught up in the same dehumanizing process as us and, therefore, may be more objective. Furthermore, their existence does not depend on the prison system — a very important point if the going gets rough and the pigs set about to silence our dissension.

To stay on guard, we should occasionally test the limits of the pigs' tolerance for deviant behavior. If we have too much fear of disciplinary action or retaliation we may too narrowly define the boundaries of freedom and may mentally discard alternatives of action that could be advantageously pursued. We can be guided by the experience of others, but more can be gained from personal testing. Personal testing reaffirms a commitment to resistance and nudges us out of complacency. It also gives us a sense of freedom of action, thereby revitalizing our self-determination. To keep from absorbing a new dehumanized value system, we may find it useful from time to time to gut-react with automatic responses. If we always think about consequences before we express our true feelings, the feelings themselves may imperceptibly change. Just as the pigs limit what they will tolerate by way of opposition, we must also limit what we will tolerate by way of co-optation.

One of the most intriguing questions from both a theoretical and practical standpoint is: how long and under what conditions can a person maintain dehumanizing conditions and discordant values without support of any kind from others? Can internal fortitude based on some seemingly distant reference system keep one's brain from being washed, and if so, how? One important aspect of value preservation under conditions of deprivation and debasement is a sense of self-worth. We must hold on to self-respect by preserving some fragment of the truth about ourselves that we respect. Maintaining our integrity under repressive conditions may also require some mental separation of the self from the conditions the pigs force upon us. When we invoke the scientific stance of the observer, in effect, we refuse to be co-opted into the machinery of self-debasement. The preservation of the psyche is also facilitated by exercising freedom of action, however restrictive the limits. This may be as simple as the exercise of anticipating what is going to happen and having predictions validated by future events. Pro-action, as opposed to reaction, also gives us back some sense of control.

MIM(Prisons) offers the supportive reference system outside of the prison system and strongly encourages us to start our own localized study groups to support each other. They also offer support through the formal group United Struggle from Within. This support is imperative in combating the bourgeois brainwashing by allowing us to keep our communistic values front and center by giving us a criticism/self-criticism forum and correcting us when our values begin to morph. MIM(Prisons) also supports us in action. They give us support in testing the limits, in the grievance process, in organizing, and in letting our voices be heard.

Comrades, we must not fall prey to the pigs' dehumanization efforts, communistic value diminishment, and subsequent bourgeois brainwashing. It takes more than passively reading an article or book and agreeing with the content — it takes action! When we start to think that our oppression is our own fault, then we start to justify the oppression of the Third World nations, by the U.$. empire, with some backward bourgeois thought process. We must resist, and this must be resistance from within!

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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The Death Penalty Procedure


It makes my mind wobbly
Why do the state bother?
To sterilize the needle during a lethal injection?
Are they concerned about the condemned contracting an infection?
Or are they just achieving a sadistic judicial erection?
Even the concept of sanitizing executions is mindless!
Who thought of killing them with kindness?
Humanity, need to redefine justice and blindness
It's sad! Humane mercy in the form of an alcohol pad
The executors leave a lot to be desired
It's like they be pissing on a person, on fire
Why do they sterilize the needle? But in the RHU they won't feed us
"Our society teach revenge killing is okay and our society expect murder to go away?"
I got 28 yrs in, my mind could be a little feeble
Because, I thought about flying needles and ask
myself, "why didn't Noah just swat the two mosquitoes and save the world. From a lot of diseases!"
Why? When it come to death they sterilize the needle!
But in the RHU they won't feed us
Another death penalty procedure?

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[Security] [First World Lumpen]
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Secure Communications is Key to Organizing the Lumpen

In response to the May 2013 article Rats Undermine United Front Unity, as a brother of the struggle, originally from Texas, I send mine to all you brothers and sisters back home.

As leaders, we have to be serious about our roles in the movement, accepting responsibility for any personal miscalculation made while representing our units, party, cell, etc.

Period. No cut on it.

Communication is key when organizing the lumpen to unite. And most times having a safe and secure line of communication can be just as important, if not more important, than what is actually being said. Because what is a line of communication if it is always being disturbed, interfered and disrupted? I don't know, but it isn't effective communication I tell you that.

So often we hear prisoners commenting on how great the power of snitches and provocateurs are, and it bothers me that we are able to concentrate so much energy on them instead of on the tactics of countering their elementary crosses, and their state.

Sometimes we revolutionaries have to accept the consequences of our miscalculation so that we can learn an experience that allows us to identify the signs of the problem when it approaches again, instead of being so quick to place blame or responsibility on another person.

I personally was caught slipping while in the possession of a wire regarding economical development involving a select few. The flashlight turtles ran up at an unexpected time to my assigned quarters. With the choice of catching a narcotics possession/distribution charge or dropping my line in order to dispose, I took the latter option and became guilty of losing an important wire. I didn't agree with the charge by my peers or the penalty, but I did take responsibility for the wire being lost. It is very likely that someone very close to me set the authorities to get with my program, but the point is it was my responsibility to safe guard the wire. I lost a lot due to one miscalculation - like a comrade at arms on the battlefield - from great allies who can never again support my campaigns, to resources of a collective committee with it's tentacles reaching into places all across the seas. But on the other hand I learned that the ability to secure and stabilize a line of communication with very important factions behind the wire from state to state is very powerful. But for most it's a learned ability.

I suggest to all comrades that we learn to say who did it less, and practice doing it more. Securing and stabilizing lines of communication is a great place to start.


MIM(Prisons) adds: We've written extensively about the importance of secure communications both behind the bars and on the streets. This is a critical element of self-defense for the revolutionary movement. As the state expands it's tactics of infiltration and information gathering, we must expand our defenses.

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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Enemy of the State


I'm considered an "enemy of the state"
because I refuse to participate
so they incarcerate trying to manipulate
and mandate my mind state, solitary
confined my mind refined but not reformed
nor refrained. I've maintained
an intellect apart, with the intent to
never relent, staying relentless showing
no repentance, insistent that I be
able to live life in the true sense
of liberty unequivocally.
Allow me to enlighten
I don't mean to frighten only to heighten
your ability to see clearly
I only hope you hear me. Society projected
whole communities neglected, infected,
mistreated, abused and used left
confused I'm not amused nothing more
to lose so I spread the news of revolt
a jolt to the very foundation of this
hypocritical nation they are enslaving
I have faith you can envision, listen
and pay attention,
their invention of detention
another form of oppression, take a
lesson start asking questions check
my aggression due to their arrestin'
instead of stressin' I'm pressin'
forward, on and beyond the class war
straight to the core of this division
life in prison a manifestation the
incarceration of a whole nation. They've
got us all under surveillance
and if we show resistance we're
silenced with violence repressed
it's stressed that we fall in line
and be brainwashed one at a time
the status quo has got to go a new
format needs to be executed because
in order for us to exist we must
resist, ready and equipped. They've
got this country voting on shows and
topics that are superficial. But where's
our initial on something politically
official?! Their superimposition is apparent
and transparent with no comment,
committed to categorizing, the use of
hypnotizing with lies refusing to hear our
cries. Time to rise everyone please stand
and demand allow us all to be indelible
a considerable voice to expel, propel and
procure a promising future that will nurture
and educate instead of violate.
The vice that will annihilate our rights
without question should be cropped
and stooped!

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[Organizing] [Hunger Strike] [Nebraska State Penitentiary] [Nebraska] [ULK Issue 36]
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Failed Nebraska Protest Demonstrates Importance of Studying Political Theory

Just recently we had an incident here at the prison. There was a boycott from eating and a refusal to lockdown, leave the yard, or go to our bunks. There were a few fires started and prisoners made it hard for officers to do count.

As good as it might have felt to buck the system, this "two day" short lived revolution seemed to be useless because there was no bottom line or demands, and they ended up putting us on more restriction than we were on before. They feed us 2 cold bag lunches for breakfast and dinner, no visits, no church, no club activities, no yard, no one works, no phones (now restored), no outgoing mail (now restored), no library or law library, and officers give you disciplinary reports for every minor thing you do (passing food, sharing books, talking after 10pm, etc.).

The outcome of this "lost cause" shows the importance of studying MIM's concepts and ideology. One thing it did do is show the oppressor that the oppressed do have the will and intent to stand up. But a revolution that's lead by emotions will never win.

Another issue at hand here is the refusal to let prisoners out on parole because one person who was let out murdered 4 people (he did his full time, no parole, and he asked for mental health help before he was let out but they refused him.) Now the system wants to make us do more time on our sentence (80% instead of 50%), and make it a longer wait to go to work centers. They haven't taken into consideration all the successful parolees and how broken the system is in preparing prisoners for society.

One thing we must keep in mind is that "a man who stands upon the corners of the paths and points the way, but does not go, is just a pointer and a block of wood can do the same."


MIM(Prisons) adds: This comrade raises a very important point about how we must learn from our failures as well as our successes. And in the case of this protest, as well as many other spontaneous acts of resistance in prisons across the country, the lesson is often that we need to do more to build our level of political knowledge and study theory and strategy so that we can formulate the best approach to our local situation. There is an organizing strategy called focoism that attempts to promote and utilize the spontaneity of the masses to launch a revolution. There is a long history of spontaneous attempts at protest and the focoist strategy of revolution around the world that show us this approach generally leads to more repression, not to victory for the oppressed. We have a responsibility, as revolutionary leaders (and this extends to all readers of Under Lock & Key) to learn from this history and apply these lessons to our work today. MIM(Prisons) has a lot of literature on spontaneity, focoism and organizing strategy. Write to us to request study materials on this topic.

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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Wild Child


Wild child running wild
Got to find my way through this darkness
Got to find my way back to the streets
Been living in these hell holes for way too long

Wild child running wild
Tired of these pigs having their foot on my neck
Tired of being locked in a cage within a cage
Running back & forth like a dog behind a fence
Tired of being told what to do and not to do

Wild child running wild
Got the blood of my ancestors running deep within my veins
Harriet, Nat Turner, Denmark Vesey, Malcolm X and many more
Always got my feet planted and head held high

Wild child running wild
Why do these pigs keep trying to tame me?
Why don't they set me free into the wild?
Because by nature that is where I am supposed to be
"Free & Unchained!"

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[United Front] [National Oppression] [Ironwood State Prison] [California] [ULK Issue 36]
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Building Peace and Unity as Prison Promotes Racial Segregation and Group Punishment

In Ironwood, apparently new regulations have come down from Sacramento ordering staff to remove all signs from the doors depicting race. There were signs on the prison cage door indicating race: blue was for Black, red for Mexican, white for white and green for other. Now the designation for race is Security Threat Group (STG).

There was a recent lockdown (a melee between Sureños and New Afrikans) in one of the housing units. A status report stated that the investigation has been concluded and prisoners who are not members of the affected STGs will resume normal program. In the body of the report the affected STGs identified were Bloods, Crips and Sureños. The next day only whites and "others" were released for program. When asked about the non-affected Afrikans and the non-affected Mexicans, we were informed that because the non-affected prisoners shower in the same showers as the affected prisoners that makes them associates. So effectively all Afrikans and Mexicans are locked down (according to "race").

Up until the argument between a Mexican and an Afrikan on 30 November 2013, the nationalities on this compound got along. Communication has resolved the issues and things are back to normal except for the administration milking the lockdown. The influential people are reminded of the word that came down from their folks up the way and have been striving hard to maintain the peace.


MIM(Prisons) responds: Group punishment is one of the unjust practices that prisoners who have been organizing around humyn rights in California have demanded an end to. And it goes to show how the state systematically oppresses people based on their "race" in 2013.

The last paragraph of this report is particularly important as it exemplifies the hard work that has been put in by members and leaders of various lumpen organizations across California to create peace and build unity in the fight against the criminal injustice system. We are happy to hear that even while the prison is trying to divide prisoners and set them against one another, prisoners are working to maintain peace. We encourage prisoners everywhere to get involved in the United Front for Peace in Prisons (UFPP) which was initiated in 2011 to build peace and unity among prisoners to advance our struggle against the criminal injustice system. This prisoner's letter demonstrates the first principle of the UFPP, Peace: "We organize to end the needless conflicts and violence within the U.$. prison environment. The oppressors use divide and conquer strategies so that we fight each other instead of them. We will stand together and defend ourselves from oppression."

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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Revolutionary Mind State

Revolutionary state of mind has a place in all ages.
I was born too late for the 60's so I found mine in these pages
of Assata, Angela, Huey Newton and George.
They really opened up my mind and made me pick up the sword.

Because this whole damn country is caught up and in turmoil.
And if you truly wanna know why too much African blood in the soil,
These people kidnapped us, raped us, stole our religion and heritage.
And ask why I'm so mad, nigga ain't that a bitch!

So I keep my mind focused on the correct political line,
Cause with the right tactics and strategies these suckas won't be getting mine.
The urban guerrilla front was built to last long.
We're starting from the bottom so the cadre's strong.
A revolutionary state of mind is what the people need.
To stop the imperialism, and the capitalist greed.

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[Medical Care] [Arizona State Prison Complex Lewis Morey] [Arizona]
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Health Hazard in Arizona

We can't get anything done around here like getting a toilet or sink fixed. There are 800 cells on this yard and in 5% of them these basic amenities don't work. We literally have to fill mop buckets of water to flush down waste. Three of these pods leak water from the ceiling on to the day room 24 hours a day. It's always flooded and this combination is physically and biologically hazardous.


MIM(Prisons) adds: As we explained in ULK 34, prisoner health is a systematic problem. We have documented cases of lack of adequate nutrition or even safe uncontaminated food, brutality that leads to permanent physical health problems, contaminated water, medical neglect and other sources of health problems throughout the prison system. This problem with toilets and other leaking water is yet another example of prisons creating conditions that lead to significant health problems for the captives. Sanitation is a basic problem that we typically see in Third World countries, but this is just one of many examples of poor sanitation in Amerikan prisons. While individual cases like this could be addressed by the prison, we know that inadequate medical care and lack of basic sanitation are conditions the oppressed face around the world, and not something that imperialism has an interest in fixing.

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