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[Culture] [International Connections] [ULK Issue 19]
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Jasiri X, Choose a Side

Jasiri X Sides with Labor Aristocracy in Wisconsin
Jasiri X sides with the labor aristocracy in Wisconsin.

Jasiri X is a hip hop artist from Pittsburgh who raps the news over some dope beats produced by The Grand Architect Paradise Gray of X Clan. The two release these tracks as videos on youtube.com in a series titled "This Week with Jasiri X." Jasiri X is popular in activist circles, frequently performing and speaking at benefits and rallies. We've been bobbing our heads to his tracks since the release of OG3 - Oscar Grant Tribute in January 2009, but in light of his most recent release, American Workers vs. Multi-Billionaires, we decided to take a closer look.

OG3 tells the story of the murder of Oscar Grant and the rebellions following his murder, from the points of view of Oscar Grant and the protesters. Although the facts aren't 100% correct in OG3, it is a good example of the many tracks Jasiri X has released about police brutality and aggression against Black people in Amerika. A track titled Free the Jena 6 was one of the first that got peoples' attention, and he continues to shout out victims of police execution and violence by name.

When working on an international piece, Jasiri X correctly draws connections between police brutality here and imperial aggression against Third World peoples around the world. He recently released a track about the uprisings in Egypt with M-1 of Dead Prez, titled We All Shall Be Free!

Despite his revolutionary lean, Jasiri X still holds on to his Amerikanism on several issues, which comes up big time in American Workers vs. Multi-Billionaires. The video for this song was shot inside the capitol building in Madison, Wisconsin, against a backdrop of labor aristocrats raising a stink to keep their "fair share" of the imperialist pie. The title implies that a line is being drawn between Amerikan "workers" and the capitalist multi-billionaires with this union busting legislation. However, as outlined in several articles and books(1) Amerikan "workers" are actually fundamentally allied with the imperialist, capitalist class on an international level. It is only because of the pillage of resources and lives in the Third World that the government employees in Wisconsin even have health care in the first place. Defending this "right" to health care is essentially the same thing as supporting Amerikan wars, which Jasiri X says he is against. History has shown that the multi-billionaires won't give up theirs without a fight.

"When did the American worker become the enemy?
Why is wanting a living wage such a penalty?"
- Jasiri X from "American Workers vs. Multi-Billionaires"

The Amerikan "worker," or labor aristocrat, is the enemy of the majority of the world's people because their lives are subsidized by the economic exploitation of the Third World. Third World peoples' sweat, blood, and lives are wasted to pay for the Amerikan "worker's" pensions and health care. This is because most of the "work" that Amerikans do does not generate value; we have a service-based economy. The only reason our society has such a disproportionately high "living wage" (as if those who make less die) is because we are comfortable swinging our weight around in imperialist wars of aggression to extract wealth from the Third World. Jasiri X seems to be opposed to this extraction of wealth, but does not make the connection that Amerikan "workers" are directly benefiting from it, and not just the multi-billionaires.

Jasiri X seems to adhere to an anti-racist model of social change. Besides being supported by an incorrect analysis of history, it also has him defending Obama as a Black man, rather than attacking him as the chosen leader of the largest and most aggressive imperialist country in the world. Jasiri X correctly pins Obama as an ally of the Amerikan people; their key to a comfortable lifestyle and fat retirement plan. But as an ally of the oppressed, Jasiri X should accept that Obama, and the labor aristocracy, are enemies of the majority of the world's people, and leave patriotism behind. Agitating for the betterment of people in Haiti, Palestine, Egypt, Iraq, etc. as Jasiri X does through some of his raps, while at the same time defending Obama and the Amerikan "worker," is a recipe for stagnation. If we want to end oppression the world over, we need to have a clear idea of who are our friends and who are our enemies.

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[National Oppression] [International Connections]
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Fighting Imperialist Repression in Egypt and at Home

Thank you for everything you are doing out there to re-educate the oppressed masses of incarcerated brethren through the U.S. of Amerika.

I've been following the events that are taking place in Egypt and their repercussions throughout the Middle East and how that can affect the control and monopoly currently exerted by the U.S. in that strategic part of the world.

I can only laugh at the blatant hypocrisy displayed by the U.S. government under Barack Obama whose cries of "support" for the Egyptian people under its banner of 'Democracy' and freedom of elections. One must not forget that Hosni Mubarak stayed in power for the last 30 years as a "puppeteer-government" subservient to the U.S. And that as a direct result the Egyptian people were repressed, suppressed and suffered greatly under Mubarak's totalitarian regime.

But closer to home it pains me to see how my people: Mexicanos and Latinoamericanos (the Brown-skinned) are being persecuted and deported by the anglo-saxon-racist xenophobic bastards such as Arizona's governor Brewer, and now New Mexico's governor Martinez.

We need to show the masses out there in the streets what is really going on. Teach them their rights. Teach them to speak-up and unite against these invaders and imperialist government. And to fight literally if necessary. It's our land and our universal right as human beings to stand-up and defend our beliefs.

Preach it! Teach it! Paste it on the walls! Put it on the net, web, Facebook, everything. Especially in our barrios, ghettos, hoods. We must stop fighting one another, it is not about red and blue or black and white. It is about brown, yellow, black and other light-skinned raza to reunite, together against our common enemy the US.

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[National Oppression] [International Connections] [Arizona] [ULK Issue 17]
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Private Prison Scandal in AZ Legislature

ALEC structure

By aligning Amerikans' immediate interests with their long-term interests, the militarization of the U.$./Mexico border has become a machine that will not likely slow down on its own. This machine is propelled by the imperialist politicians, imperialist businessmen (often the same people), and the Amerikan labor aristocracy. This collusion of interests at a time when Amerikan hegemony is fragile spells danger for the oppressed nations, in particular for Aztlán.

National Public Radio (NPR) released a report this week exposing financial and political connections between the Correctional Corporation of America (CCA) and those behind Arizona's oppressive SB1070 law.(1) The law, which is still under judicial review after being put on hold, legalizes racial profiling and empowers state police to enforce federal immigration laws in the process. The scandal, now being denied by the bill's sponsor Senator Russell Pearce and others, is that they passed the law to increase their income and the profits of their corporate backers.

Without SB1070, CCA was getting an estimated $117 million a year from the federal government for imprisoning migrants. Meanwhile, Wackenhut/G4S, the next largest private prison company, has a $76 million a year contract to bus migrants around the border for the U.$. government. Of course, both of these sums are chump change compared to the $3.6 billion budget for Border Patrol in 2010.(2) All of this is federal money going to the oppressor nation to do its thing — oppress.

The essence of what is going on is Amerikans getting paid a lot of money to make sure Amerikans get paid a lot of money. That's why the border exists and why it must be militarized. If it is not, the masses whose labor value has been stolen and exported to the United $tates would come here to benefit from the fruits of their labor. Without closed borders, we can't keep the wealth inside.

The NPR report exposes the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), an organization of state legislators and powerful corporations that get together to draft and propose laws (see figure above). The companies pay tens of thousands of dollars to attend such meetings with those who make the law. And according to NPR, the number of legislators who sponsored SB1070 was almost unprecedented and 30 out of the 36 received contributions from prison companies or prison lobbyists in the 6 months following SB1070's passage. Meanwhile, two of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer's top advisers are former prison lobbyists.(1) All of this makes CCA's and Sen. Pearce's denials of corporate influence look silly.

None of this is new to CCA, which was founded in Nashville, Tennessee by former chairman of the state Republican Party, Tom Beasley and his former roomy from the U.$. Military Academy at West Point, Doc Crants. Initial investors included the governor's wife, Honey Alexander, and the Speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives, Ned McWherter.(3) Ever since then, their business model has relied on close political ties just as most military, defense and security business does. Apparently, CCA agrees with MIM(Prisons)'s assessment that migrants are and will continue to be the fastest growing prison population in the United $tates. But while we are fighting this trend, CCA is doing all they can to foster it.

When imperialism reaches the point where the arms of oppression are major sources of profiteering, and the people are dependent on these operations for their paychecks and standards of living (i.e. where oppression and the oppressors' financial interests become one in the same), we will see the national contradictions within imperialism heighten rapidly. This leads to increased repression both in laws and in actions but also the opportunity for raising consciousness and resistance among the oppressed nations. Even those Latinos who supported imperialist politics had to think twice about the Arizona law as it could impact their persynal safety if they visit that state. The imperialists expose their blatantly chauvinistic goals with these reactionary laws and the alliances that create the laws and it is our responsibility to point out the contradictions and organize against imperialist national oppression.

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[International Connections] [ULK Issue 18]
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Dazzling Hearts and Minds in Amerika

The Trapped Miners Rescue Spectacle in Chile

It is October 13 2010 and I am visually and sonically inundated with blow-by-blow descriptions of the Chilean miner rescue operation. TV, radio and newspapers have whipped themselves into a frenzy reporting the rescue of 33 miners from a collapsed mine in Chile. With a couple of months' lead time, courtesy of the drilling process, this event has received more build-up than a Superbowl. Naturally, everyone is glad the miners are coming out (miner 14 hit the surface a minute ago), but it seems to me this is an extreme case of media overkill that is designed to serve as a distraction from Mass-Murder Incorporated's (M-M Inc., the Amerikan government) worldwide killing spree, if not from the mine operator's greedy rush for profits that caused the accident in the first place.

The world waits with bated breath as one miner at a time rises to the surface with a digital clock ticking off the time of his ascent to the second and, of course, a count of each miner rescued replete with video footage of tearful reunions with family and friends. What if it were so for those unsuspecting people blown up in their homes by the predator drones Amerika operates with impunity worldwide, but it is not.

As I watch the miners coming out of the ground one at a time, I can't help but think about how many people the Amerikan government is simultaneously putting in the ground. I wonder how many people were murdered in Afghanistan and Pakistan by the drones over the course of the rescue operation? How many Palestinians, Iraqis, Somalians and Yemenis? Do they not deserve a ticking clock and body count? Certainly, but there is little feel-good factor in being confronted with a second-by-second ticking body count of the murders we are responsible for as the good citizens and share-holders of M-M Inc. No, no, we can't have that.

But why not? Why does the mainstream media ignore the big stories, the real stories? Why isn't there a body count of every human on this planet murdered by Amerikan-made weapons systems? Why not show the video footage of every single drone attack, replete with men, women and children dying in agony? This would be a stellar moment for Amerikan television corporations. Real reality TV! Maybe, when fed enough reality Amerikans will then treat themselves to the reality of the Amerikan version of the Nuremberg Trials and the Spandau Ballet. Now that is a reality most of the world would love to see and exactly why Amerikans will never see it.

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[International Connections] [Rhymes/Poetry] [Utah] [ULK Issue 18]
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One Love

Cats and dogs raining down my window
Dust bunnies roaming around my floor
Learned worms crawling around my stomach
Telling me I was taught to want more
These measly maggots at war with science
And what's before us as real and true
I pump my blood until the skin stretches
Sweat drips onto the concrete like Chinese tea
Searching each repetition the puddle's reflection
For truth
The same as I do each USW study lesson
For a MC's guidance into deeper realms
Blood starts to puddle and pool with my sweat
I question from where but continue my pace
Letting the itch of it linger on my face
Three cold meals and denials at mail call
Four cold walls and a solitary cot
One man alone with only one thought
Your punk denials will breed lawsuits
And my stomach turns cold to hot
We, comrades, are part of something larger
More human than "Jesus" dying on a cross
Steering the people through minefields of hate
Aware it's a privilege we even ate
A species on the sad cusp of extinction
One vanguard, one chance, one reason
As planet Earth spins out the seasons
Survival of the fittest as Amerikkka weakens
One love comrades —- Our species

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[International Connections] [Haiti] [ULK Issue 13]
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Haiti Update & Correction

In our last piece on Haiti we dismissed some insinuations a comrade made about the imperialists causing the earthquake in January. This comrade responded and provided some history to back up h claims including information on Project Seal by Thomas Leech. The MIM(Prisons) comrade who responded was ignorant of this information as well as the fact that leaders including Hugo Chavez had made references to similar accusations at the time. We apologize for our ignorance on the subject.

While we don't think we can say conclusively that the imperialists caused the earthquake, we can say that they caused the disaster. Comrades have done a more thorough job of explaining the economic and political history behind this since our last post (see below), and we still find it more useful to talk about these solid facts that demonstrate the systematic undermining of Haitian sovereignty and security.

As was widely reported last week, of the over $1 billion the u.$. is spending in Haiti, only one cent of each dollar went to the Haitian puppet government. Instead of a centralized effort by Haitians to rebuild their country, most money going to so-called "aid" work went to thousands of different Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). Meanwhile 40% of the money is going to the u.$. military, which is acting as an occupation force. This validates our assertions in January about where donations are likely to go.

While there are some groups out there who are more worthy of donations, a strategy that does not attack the imperialist policies exposed in the articles below cannot prevent these disasters from recurring across the Third World.

Also See:
Beware of Amerikkkans bearing gifts: Haiti and Africa by Monkey Smashes Heaven
Earthquake Strikes Haiti; Imperialism is a Disaster by the Revolutionary Anti-Imperialist Movement (Denver)

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[International Connections] [Utah]
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Health Care for Muslims Under U.$. Occupation

white nationalist charlie daniels plays for troops

I started reading [The Straight Scoop from Charlie Daniels (see excerpt below)] with the thought, "Oh, he has some good music" and ended up with the, "never again will I listen to country music." All country music is patriotic, racist pig rhetoric. Take old Toby Keith's bullshit soldier songs.

Motherfucker, Charlie Daniels, those Taliban have been victims, their land was invaded, their wives and children murdered… Let's see your pussy ass go through that and not have a heart attack!!!

It's his conviction that he's so right that's frightening. And he is amerika. The epitomy of the average amerikan right there. Ignorant, proud, uppity, evil, wrong!

The Straight Scoop from Charlie Daniels... I've just returned from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba Naval Air Station base where we did three shows for the troops and toured several locations around the post visiting with some of the finest military personnel on planet earth. The kids seemed to really enjoy the shows and especially liked "This Ain't No Rag, It's A Flag" and "In America." … The truth is that these scum bags [Taliban detainees] are not only being treated humanely, but they are probably better off health wise and medically than they've ever been in their lives.

MIM(Prisons) responds: Charlie Daniels is taking up the Michael Moore (maker of the film Sicko) amerikan populist line on health care. MIM(Prisons) calls for the u.$. to provide universal health care to all people in countries under u.$. occupation, while white nationalists get indignant because a thousand prisoners of war get medical attention while they are tortured in long-term isolation. Daniels thinks long-term isolation is humane, and is pissed off that they are getting such good health care. This is amerikan chauvinism at its finest as our comrade points out.

Any humynist would be pissed off that the only way Third World people have been able to get decent health care under imperialism is by being captured and tortured by the imperialists. At home, with their family, such care is not available. Racists like Daniels and Moore think Afghans and other Third World people get what they deserve, while amerikans need more when they have access to Viagra, boob jobs and an endless list of medical technology that is purely recreational and not related to survival.

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[Organizing] [International Connections] [Clinton Correctional Facility] [New York] [ULK Issue 13]
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Internationalist Solidarity with Haiti from Behind Bars

U.S. Troops providing aid at Haitian hospital
Jan. 20. 2010 - U.S. aid arrives at a Haitian hospital, ready to save lives.

As we embark on 2010 it seems that a tragic disaster has struck the Afrikan people. A few years ago it was hurricane Katrina and now Haiti. I was just building with the brothers on how in 1804 Haiti won its independence, defeating the French imperialists on January 1st. Twelve days later an earthquake rips trough Haiti at the magnitude of 7.0. Now, I'm not sure who is to blame, but I have my suspicions. You know, since 2006 there's been a tsunami in South Asia, a hurricane in New Orleans, and now an earthquake in Haiti. All are dark skinned nations! Like I said, I have my suspicions, which I'll get into later.

Sisters and Brothers, we need to come together and focus on Our people in Haiti! We, the brothers of a plantation in New York called Clinton [Correctional Facility], have got together and we were so moved by the horrible images on the news, newspapers and radio that we are willing to donate clothes, food and money from our accounts to help our Afrikan Haitian mothers, fathers and children.

As New Afrikans, we understand fully our purpose in life and it's to help our people whether they be in the u$, Cuba, Afrika, Brazil, Jamaica, etc. We understand that the Amerikan Red Cross takes out a percentage from the money donated and we really don't want that type of middle man pilfering from our donations. So we ask if you can have an outside agency that's willing to come to this plantation and others throughout New York to pick up the items of clothing, food and an address that we can write to send our funds and condolences. We are talking with the Superintendent and hopefully by the time you respond we should be ready to go. We really do hope you can help us help those in need.

Bloods and Crips, I ask that we take a minute to understand that we as a people just lost close to 50,000 men, women and children in less than 24 hours! That number unfortunately will rise in this catastrophic event. Please, please, please stop the tribalism and join forces and help our people! At this rate we'll be extinct in no time!

MIM(Prisons) responds: Many more than 50,000 have died and many more will. The situation in Haiti is horrendous and as this writer goes on to point out, this does not happen to europeans or amerikans. He draws parallels to the ethnic cleansing that took place in New Orleans and Southeast Asia following hurricanes and tsunamis. This comrade blames it on man correctly, but does so in a mystical way later in the letter (unprinted). These disasters are man-made because of economics. While climate change may increase extreme weather, earthquakes occur at a level humyns have yet to interfere with.
[see our correction for this article]

It was not long ago that the united $tates went into Haiti and kidnapped President Aristide, who has been in exile ever since. As the Haitian people call for his help in their time of need, 5 digits worth of u.$. troops march into their country, controlling everything and allowing little aid to get through. The history of u.$. "aid" to Haiti is well-documented and clearly not in the interests of the Haitian people.(1)

Real solidarity means supporting the self-determination of Haitians. If you want an organization that claims to send all its money directly to Haiti, you could donate to the Bush/Clinton fund. (It may end up being sent in the form of occupation troops though.) The real standard of where to send aid should be where the Haitian people are building their own institutions. Years ago the united $tates crushed programs that were developing Haitian medical personnel, and now amerikans want to pretend to be their saviors.(2) While we do not endorse any particular funds at this time, we have compiled some information on groups that may be able to get donations into the right hands.

Long Live International Solidarity!

notes:
(1)This article gives some more background: http://monkeysmashesheaven.wordpress.com/2010/01/23/haiti-beware-amerikkkans-bearing-gifts-aid-becomes-pretext-for-u-colonial-occupation/
(2)This article also gives good background and contemporary information: http://www.sfbayview.com/2010/earthquake-in-haiti-under-aristide-haitians-were-prepared-for-disaster/

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