Giving and receiving: a celebration of friendship

I am starting to blog again after a month’s absence. I needed time off from everything to recharge. It has been a very intense six months starting with the occupation of Jewish women of the Israeli consulate to protest the assault on Gaza ,   going through the launch and tour of Transforming Power , and ending with the launch of Fierce Light, my friend Velcrow Ripper’s new film, in which I play a small part.   By the time it was all over, not counting my work at Ryerson, the solidarity with the Tamil and three presentations at the Congress of Humanities and Social Sciences, I was exhausted and recovering from a torn ligament in my knee and pneumonia. I just needed to stop.

Understanding the Coup in Honduras by Felipe Stuart

Felipe Stuart is an old friend and comrade who went to Nicaragua in the 1980's but unlike many revolutionary solidarity activists, he stayed and became a citizen and a member of the FSLN.  He is writing with considerable knowledge about the coup in Honduras
Here are some working notes for an article I am about to publish on the meaning of the coup, and the US bases in Colombia.* There are a number of salient points that must be understood in order to understand the "Tegucigolpe" (coup) in Honduras:
 
First, the coup was made in Washington and the US Soto Cano (formerly Palmerola) airbase. Washington participated, through mostly Bush appointees and some going back to the Clinton presidency), in conceiving, planning, and carryout the coup. As always, US coup-making was conducted with all the appropriate disguises and trickery to lay the basis for plausible denial and even "opposition" in the event the "dress rehearsal coup" won on the ground but blew up in their faces internationally.

In Honour of the 64th Anniversary of Hiroshima

Please take a moment on this 64th Anniversary of Hiroshima to watch this movie video by Velcrow Ripper entitled "Lanterns of Memory"  It includes an interview with a survivor

An Evening in Burqin by Pierre Beaudet

The sun is slowly coming down in this northern West Bank village. We are really a few kilometers from Galilee just outside the green line. Around the city of Jenin and the nearby villages, a cluster of Israeli settlements remind us of the occupation, as well as numerous checkpoints controlled by Israeli soldiers.

My not so secret life as a movie buff

Sometime in 2006, I met Cathi Bond, whom  I knew as the CBC's DVD Diva (a title she hates but I love) .  I'm not sure why,  but we got into an argument about Kill Bill I (a film which she loved but I hated).  It was a debate that reflected the difference in generation, she's about 20 years younger than me, and I realized later cultural sensibilities.  We both like action films but she loves the really over the top ones, especially Korean.  She asked if I wanted to debate Kill Bill for rabble radio,

John Cartwright Reviews "Transforming Power"

John Cartwright, President of the Toronto and York District Labour Council, offers up his thoughts on Transforming Power. Click on the .pdf below to download and read the review that originally appeared in Our Times

The Toronto Municipal Strike: Who Do We Get Mad At?

 By Sam Gindin

Public sector strikes are frustrating to both the public and the strikers. The public is upset with losing daily services they have come to depend on, while the strikers are upset with the apparent lack of respect for the work they do.

RT @ Persepolis

    Hi all. Judy is still away on vacation, so I’m still filling in as a guest-blogger here at Transforming Power. Judy will be back towards the end of the month, as energizied and invigorated as ever! In the meantime, here’s my latest post. Enjoy.
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Not In My Backyard (or Park)!

Well, file this in the interesting but not surprising category, but it turns out that social media is already playing a significant role in the Toronto Public Workers Strike. Case in point – the reaction of the Toronto community group “Friends of Christie Pits Park” to the city’s decision to turn a portion of the eponymous park into a temporary garbage dump.

From babbling to crushing on Stephen Harper

Judy is off on vacation for a couple of weeks, so I'm going to take over her blog and post videos of Michael Jackson here.  (Just kidding.  We've all seen enough of that on Twitter and Facebook.  Pam Kapoor wrote an interesting article about that here, in fact.)

What I really want to blog about is social media, which Judy also talks about in her book, in chapter 8.  I just went to a fantastic conference a couple of weeks ago - Social Tech Training 2009.  In a nutshell, the conference was for people who want to learn and share ideas about how to use social media to organize, promote, and create social change.  Instead of taking notes, I tweeted them out on twitter as a way of staying in touch with Judy about what I was learning (since I was there for both of us), and you can find my play-by-play and other participants' notes from the conference under the hashtags #stt09 and #ncwk.  So I won't rehash (ha, get it?) that here.

Instead, I'll talk about my own journey with social media, and I invite you to share yours in the comments here if you feel so inclined.