What could Oil, Diamonds, and Marijuana possibly have in common?Answer: A global Campaign of Lies. Not one of them is presented truthfully in the mass media.
Defined by an ability to simply rake in the bucks, each appears to be highly desirable. Only 2 are actually valuable, as defined by their essence as a means of production, two are finite and depletable, and only one is renewable. By the very fact we are all born here, all naturally belong to all of us. However, laws have been crafted by a handful of wealthy men to keep the bulk of the human race from touching 2 of them, leading us all, oddly enough, to be over-reliant on one of them, one that is running out.Cannabis is more useful and valuable than diamonds, more on par with oil in terms of its overall potential as a means of production. It has been totally repressed, defamed as an Evil Weed by a massive campaign of lies, stifiling the people's interest in and access to it, and wiping it from the public record for 3 generations. Diamonds, conversely, simply are not that valuable. They are not a means of producing much of anything, but because people have been convinced they are unique symbols of love that they simply, must have, they generate mind-boggling amounts of money. This belief was created with a massive campagin of lies. Cannabis prohition is simply not about "marijuana".Cannabis prohibition makes "pot" or "marijuana"- the popular "drug" part of the cannabis plant - artificially more valuable than gold, which in and of itself is a truly ridiculous thing. What one is supposed to believe and endorse is that "pot smoking is bad, so laws providing penalties for touching it are good: they will help people - and send the right message to children. It is but a sanctimonius veneer on a policy that, stringently enforced, creates a billion-dollar black market industry, and a massive nightmare for law enforcement. 750,000 people were arrested for cannabis-touching in 2001. That is more than the number of people arrested for all other (real) crimes combined. That is a nightmare of squandered resources (money) and effort in our "New America". Despite a $20 billion-a-year prohibition effort, people smoke pot every hour of the day, and lots of it @ 4:20. Might as well prohibit the wind - it does more damage than pot smoking.The total suppression of industrial and medicinal applications of cannabis is where cannabis prohibiton earns it's coffee and donuts. It's outstanding accomplishmnent is the fact that people aren't using it to make paint bases, or distill biofuels, or make fiber, or research medications, or make cereal. This is what's important. Cannabis prohibition is NOT about pot smoking. You don't get arrested for smoking it. You get arrested for touching it (possession), growing it (manufacturing), moving it (trafficking), trading it (trafficking), selling it (trafficking); talking about it on a telephone is conspiracy to traffick and is treated worse than rape in the eyes of the law. Law-abiding business -the good kind - is out of business. If it ever really was about "gettin' high", it isn't any longer and hasn't been for decades. It's about Oil.
"No matter how advanced our economy might be, no matter how sophisticated our equipment becomes, for the foreseeable future we will still depend on fossil fuels." - Presidential candidate George W. Bush, Pontiac, Michigan, September 13, 2000
**************A U.S.-led ouster of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein could open a bonanza for American oil companies long banished from Iraq, scuttling oil deals between Baghdad and Russia, France and other countries, and reshuffling world petroleum markets, according to industry officials and leaders of the Iraqi opposition.Although senior Bush administration officials say they have not begun to focus on the issues involving oil and Iraq, American and foreign oil companies have already begun maneuvering for a stake in the country's huge proven reserves of 112 billion barrels of crude oil, the largest in the world outside Saudi Arabia.Washington Post 9.14.2002 "The problems that we face will not be solved by the minds that created them"- Albert Einstein
Oil is the dominant means of production at this time, partly due to being so concentrated and powerful, partly because of the repression of natural alternatives. Oil is innately valuable in that things can be done with it: This is what is meant by the term "means of production".
Oil has no perfect substitute. Neither solar cell, nor coal, nor plutonium can run trucks or airplanes. There are theoretical substitutes, but not one shows any promise in the near term of even being developed. It is the lifeblood of the entire global capitalist system, and has been for 100 years. If oil prices go beyond a very operational price of no return, so to speak, the economy will most certainly be contained, very likely to the point of collapse. Imagine the consequences today, for example, if oil prices jumped a mere 50 percent. But if best predictions are correct, and we are entering the era of post-peak production, a steady and accelerating increase in the price of oil is inevitable, and soon.So capitalism itself, utterly dependent on this single finite substance, is faced with a very real and very threatening energy crisis. Progressive (as in gradual) change is now producing an abrupt step-change. We may not perceive it as such yet, because U.S. capitalists are very adept at commodifying the mass-intellect, and making its assertions appear both upright and noble, as we can see in the ubiquitous display of American flags.The Infinite War[See also The End of Oil.]Oil has been formed from solar power trapped and stored in hydrocarbon runoff collected into vast pools and stored under intense heat and pressure for hundreds of millions of years, pre-dating human evolution. Thus I say all the oil in the World belongs to everybody.It is a massive effort to aquire, extract, transport, refine, re-transport, etc... I cannot go out and pump oil myself. I'd just blow myself up trying to make gasoline. All other things being equal (which, of course, they aren't), Im not terribly opposed to paying a fee per gallon to get gasoline. However, it is also going to run out soon, in terms of human generations. No more can be made. Hasta la Vista 93 octane unleaded.There are alternative energy choices - the pryolitic reactor, which makes fuel out of biomass, , the diesel engine, which was developed to run off biodiesel and seedoils, in addition to the potentials of solar and wind. These alternatives are choices essentially denied to us in the USA, still "pooh-poohed" in the highly controlled mass media, either as primitive tools, or as futuristic "pie-in-the-sky". "Theoretical Substitutes".The Oil companies developed a diesel fuel out of petroleum and managed subsequently to monopolize petroleum as the primary fue for the 20th century. This was done by stifling alternative energy research, and to no small extent demonizing the cannabis plant. Even the article above, The Infinite War - written by a retired Army General - as well-researched as it appears, doesn't mention the issue with biofuels (even the spell checker didn't recognize it!). All in all, alternative fuel technologies are thoroghly suppressed. Oil's running out and people don't seem to want to discuss them. What's up with that?[See: Table: Decline in oil production and International Workshop on Oil Depletion]DiamondsSimilarly, diamonds are the by-product of evolutionary forces, transpiring over a billion years, and percolated to the surface by volcanic and tectonic forces. Diamond mines are largely excavations into deceased volcano cores. Aside from the fascinating fact of being pure carbon, they are merely sparkely rocks with little use outside of some tool-making (drill bits/saw blades) and jewelry. They can't build houses or keep us warm, weave fabrics, feed people, light our homes, or make fuel-oils. "You certainly can't smoke 'em", says a friend of mine (He's a pothead...) They suck in brownies...While not plentiful as sand, diamonds are so plentiful that their awesome value has to be based upon and maintained by lies, deciet, and prohibition, not on any innate worth. Diamonds, therefore, are NOT a means of production. The ScamBoth diamonds and oil have thier respective values artificially maintained by different applications of laws prohibiting people from touching certain specified naturally-occuring things:
by suppressing alternative means of production, not just alternative fuels, the value of OIL is kept artificial. OPEC raises or lowers production to increase or decrease its price. Suppression of cannabis protects this monopoly by preventing development of cannabis industries as a competitive means of production. Just as prohibition is not about "pot smoking", the monopoly is not just about fuel oils or gasoline, but fiber, plastics, paper, celluose, as well as medicines. Fuel technologies are just one aspect of a means of production.
Diamond values are kept artificially high by thorough control of mines and supplies, limiting production and maintaining the image of diamonds as valuable, desirable, and rare. And also by legislation: by the Precious Stones act of 1927 which prohibits touching "unregistered diamonds". There are 2 points here: the first is that each of these items is handled in a way that "legally" prevents 99% of the human population from sharing in the innate wealth that can apparently be generated and funnels it into the pockets of the 1 %. The second is that the market is not truly free. It's somewhat similar to allowing "microgiant" to petiton the government to prohibit "macfruit computers", and then vigorously make sure all these competing computers are confiscated. Computers are primarily tools, not means of production though - the stakes are exponetially higher. The market is vastly unfree.It is often argued that this process exacerbates the presence of poverty on planet Earth. This policy, though, is vigorously defended as good and desirable - even righteous - by those who profit from it and they have convinced a large number of people, off of whom they feed, to participate enthusiastically in it. The rise of the consumer society is submitted as sufficient evidence of this.Manifest Destiney and the origin of the Consumer Society[This is an excerpt from a document credited as the beginning of the Manifest Destiny concept. I can't read more than a couple sentences at a time without treating my nausea. Forgive me for including so much, but I felt it was essential to drive home how full of themselves these people were. Think of how the author may have percieved the 2000 Election Circus.]
America is destined for better deeds. It is our unparalleled glory that we have no reminiscences of battle fields, but in defence of humanity, of the oppressed of all nations, of the rights of conscience, the rights of personal enfranchisement. Our annals describe no scenes of horrid carnage, where men were led on by hundreds of thousands to slay one another, dupes and victims to emperors, kings, nobles, demons in the human form called heroes. We have had patriots to defend our homes, our liberties, but no aspirants to crowns or thrones; nor have the American people ever suffered themselves to be led on by wicked ambition to depopulate the land, to spread desolation far and wide, that a human being might be placed on a seat of supremacy. We have no interest in the scenes of antiquity, only as lessons of avoidance of nearly all their examples. The expansive future is our arena, and for our history. We are entering on its untrodden space, with the truths of God in our minds, beneficent objects in our hearts, and with a clear conscience unsullied by the past. We are the nation of human progress, and who will, what can, set limits to our onward march? Providence is with us, and no earthly power can. We point to the everlasting truth on the first page of our national declaration, and we proclaim to the millions of other lands, that "the gates of hell" -- the powers of aristocracy and monarchy -- "shall not prevail against it."John L. O'Sullivan on Manifest Destiny, 1839 See also: Manifest Destiny Discussion.Manifest Destiny is a concept, "born" in the early 1800's, that grossly simplified says the Earth, not just North America, was put here by God for White People's use. It's philosophy and values set the stage, so to speak, for the modern American Society, which I often call the "Consumer Society" because of its single-minded devotion to aquiring things as a measure of personal success.Occuring roughly at the dawn of the Industrial Age, this "philosophy" promoted the perspective that the earth is "ours for the taking", a resource essentially to be claimed, plundered and commidified. The industrial revolution chugged on, spreading "progress" far and wide, oblivious to and without regard for environmental or social impact. It constantly proclaimed it's rightousness - and hasn't stopped.Along the way it developed the concept of mass production and reinforced the "disposable, one-use, single-serving" values that sort of identify modern Consumer Society. This is due in part to the belief that, ultimately, they are going to be whisked from this life soon to be with God. The Earth will be empty, except for "sinners" and others God doesn't like. Manifest Destiny, somewhere deep in it's flowery descriptions of its high and mighty ideals, supported slavery, and the concept of lessor peoples. Pollution is a non-issue, global warming is a non-issue, species exstinction is not an issue - and the suffering of non-whites is not an issue - because God put all this here for white people, anyway. People have become commodities to be exploited just like oil or diamonds or water. I think this is called "class structure".(I argue that lingering vestiges of this are manifested in the racial disparity of all drug law enforcement.)Again grossly oversimplified, what I refer to as the "Consumer Society" grew out of this milieu, America's experience with slavery, and with the ethnic cleansing of Native Peoples. After slavery was "abolished", the Peonage System rose essentially maintaining the "best part" of slavery:
One of the most striking features of the economy of the South in the early 20th century was the extent to which its farms, plantations, mines, and mills availed themselves of a system of forced labor known as "peonage." This system developed from the practice of holding laborers in debt and forcing them to remain on the premises of their creditors to work off the debt. Peon laborers were thus bound to their masters' firms or plantations, often by means of violence and intimidation. Because the overwhelming majority of peon laborers were black, the system served to entrench racial as well as class divisions throughout the South. Peonage Files of the US DOJ The firms and plantations have been replaced by huge national and transnational corporations. Their goal is to get control of commodities as cheaply and as exclusively as possibly, then try to get each human being to cough up as much money as possible for each unit as they buy them back. They need a constantly flowing pipeline from your pocket to thiers in order for it all to run. The underlying market structure and values are basically like the board game Monopoly, except that it's administered very aggressively like war: lying, cheating, stealing , and killing people are all necessary parts to sustain it. Tobacco and Enron are a wonderful examples. Water Privatization is the next huge scam. Violating the rights of the little guy and the Laws of Nations is all in a days work.(See: The Infinte War and exceprts from The Grand Chessboard)Slaves to the Grind The Consumer Society of Modern America (you can also call it the rat race) would not be what it is without millions of people being able to both consume mass produced things and get easily into debt. Credit historically made it easy to buy cars and homes, but monopolies needed people to consume frequently, regularly - daily, impulsively. The introduction of the "credit card" completed the transformation of American Society from a nation defined by family farms, small business, and self-reliance - and all those radiant concepts glorified by Mr. O'Sullivan - into a massive peonage system. The credit card is really a "debt card": your portable gateway to extended peonage. No need to remain on the plantation, "feel free" to come and go as you please, but you gotta pay the man. (at least once every 30 days.)People work longer and longer hours, 2 and three jobs sometimes, to" make ends meet". They buy more and more, tricked into believing material consumption and material possessions reflect success, stautus, wealth, and taste. The best dressed, most comfy slaves in history, they believe this so blindly many Americans are in serious credit card debt.
In 2001, between 2 million and 2.5 million people nationwide felt the need to seek assistance from a credit counseling agency, which may come as no surprise given recent statistics on consumer debt. According to the Federal Reserve, non-secured consumer debt rose from $1.2 trillion in 1996 to $1.65 trillion in 2001. Consumer bankruptcy filings jumped from 1.2 million in 2000, to 1.5 million in 2001. Credit Card debt now averages $8,562 per household.Luthern Social Services Press Release(See: The Overspent American and Redefining the American Dream and 1998 Predictions of VISA)
This is one huge way "capital" - as well as "life" - is sucked out of people. Like a sort of handout, people get hooked on credit and leverage themselves deep into debt - peonage, essentially. This is exactly where massive transnational corporations want and need the 99%. It keeps people dependent on seeking work, going to work or going home to sleep. Those that work have funds to pay thier bills. Those that don't eventually get labled as "sponging off the system", or as "surplus population". Again, it's all legal and good, and evidence of the progress of man, I'm told. And it's going global.
Advertising and Reefer Madness
"gotta have a jones for this, a jones for thatI wonder who got her thinking like that...This runnin' with the Jones just ain't where it's at..."Boz Scaggs - Dirty LowdownAdvertising is what pulls this stunt off so well. Advertising is what enabled, aided, nurtured, and abetted the romanticization of "the Stone" and demonization of "the Plant". American Corporations spend something in the neighborhood of $250,000,000,000 on advertising their stuff each year. People are bathed in hi-powered advertising all their waking hours, at least in populous areas with electricty and media. Advertising blares incessantly from the radio, the TV , billboards, newspapers, magazines, on the sides of busses and trucks to the back of taxis. People or machines call you on the phone. Somebody is always wanting to interrupt your stream of consciousness in a rude attempt to make you buy something you seem to have done well-enough without thus far. They are the ones "who got her thinkin like that".Randolph Hearst sold newspapers basically as a way to make money off wood pulp - he didn't give a damn if people could even read them. However, newspaper stories used to sell these pulpy papers had long been used to demonize the Native Americans, and justify America's brutal ethnic cleasing of the entire continent. The stories have mostly turned out to be distortions of self-defense, terrible misunderstandings, but not least - heinous fabrications. (I often wonder how badly things would have gone if the Internet and mass media had been around then to counter all the lies told about natives. See: Native American Testimony by Peter Nabakov - a book - if you are unclear on exactly how badly the Natives were screwed, or if "Trail of Tears" doesn't ring a bell.) Anyway, a man named Harry Anslinger - an agent of the US Federal Government - and Hearst, already fond of demonizing Natives and Mexicans, made up outrageous and infamous lies. Anslinger crafted the template for all future prohibitonist propaganda with the bizarre claim that smoking pot would turn you into an instant insane ax-murderer....and people bought it! Ugly story after ugly story - all lies - went to print in the Hearst Papers. People simply believed it (possibly leading to the phrase "hey, they bought it"). They loved it at the theaters when" Reefer Madness" was released, bringing Anslingers mega-lies to the silver screen. 65 years -3 generations - later the masses still buy it even though there isn't a lot of credible evidence that pot is much more harmful the the questionable act of inhaling smoke, and numerous well-done and Government-commissioned studies fully refute Anslingers poisonous mythology. [Look up "yellow journalism" on your favorite search engine.]It is worthwhile to note that despite all the horrible things Anslinger did to create Reefer Madness, he did make specific effort to see that hemp seed and fiber was NOT included in all the prohibition efforts. He intended for the hemp industry to continue unmolested. That was fully suppressed after the end of WWII.[See the movie Grass. It is billed as "entertaining", and it is, but it is an outstanding cataloging of the evolution of cannabis propaganda.]Reefer Madness and Protection of Corporate MonopoliesAdvertisers livelihood, all $250 billion of it, is to craft ways to make people believe a certain thing about a product (or person) and attempt to "make" people want to have/get/consume that item (or vote for that person): to effect a desired behavioral follow-thru. Sure some things we need, but they don't need hi-priced, hi-power ads to make us want them, but it is needed to make us buy the brands the pay the advertisers. There's nothing wrong with brands, either. Business is life.But there is a massive ethical abyss one falls into using high-powered advertising to make people believe and buy things that are not true, or cover up heinous acts. "Advertising" becomes "Propaganda" when that happens. And it happens all the time.Speaking of propaganda.... the Partnership for a Drug-Free (marijuana-free) America is made up of Pharmaceutical companies("pharms") and by Advertising Agencies. Pharmaceutical companies are among the biggest clients of advertisers, pushing a kaleidescope of medications and drugs, not all of them necessarily effective or safe, often with just a slick TV ad and the blurb: "Ask your doctor if "such-and-such pill" is right for you". No need to even ask what the pill is, just ask your doctor, and buy the drug. Many of them have potentially serious side-effects and are quite expensive. But don't smoke pot! [Watch the nightly News on commerical television - particularly CBS. Count the medication commericals in the 30 minute period, listen to how side-effects are presented.]While nobody suggests the legalization of cannabis would undermine the solidity of the massive petrochemical industries (that is apparently what CEO's are for), they would lose "a little off the top" to genuine competition in a free market. That happens to be totally unacceptable though, and nothing is too extreme, unlawful, or unethical, when it comes to profits.For example - Pharms could see cannabis-based medicine take perhaps 10% of its profits upon leglization, based on the number of people who have access to the usual medications who state over and over those drugs do not work for them. They could lose a lot more once real research is allowed, unless the Pharms did their own. Verifiable knowledge of the cannabis plant is prohibited as well, at least in the USA - other countries are forging ahead with medical and industrial research. Pharms would continue to research and develop important medicines and treatment. (The US is also the only member of the G8 that doesn't have an industrial hemp industry.)[see: G.W. Phamaceuticals]Unfriendly Fire
All will pay who disagree with me...- Steppenwolf Note that the US Federal government doesn't just refuse to recognize medical marijuana. It is so hostile towards medical cannabis it wages a war against states that have made legal recognition of it. They are so serious about this no exception whatsoever is made between serious criminals who grow for profit and those who run bona fide clinics and hospices, even in model compliance with state laws. The DEA has dramatically stepped up its raids on medical cannabis facilities in California and Oregon since September 11th. They have dynamited clinic doors, pointed shotguns at people in wheelchairs, and destroyed thousands of highly evolved medical cannabis plants. They have recieved an outpouring of angry responses from powerful state officials and commissioners of numerous cities but keep on kickin'. [See: WAMM Raid before and after photos]They have arrested more than 25 persons in these raids on medical cannabis facilities in California, but only 1 "terrorist": an ugly show of Federal priorities and hatred. Terrorists even get more leeway in court. This is because Medical cannabis is a bigger threat to the Pharms than drug traffickers. Pharms are part of the petrochemical industry, which is part of the oil monopoly. The Federal Government is run by in large part by longtime oil corporation insiders, including the President and Vice President. There even was, until recently, a Chevron oil tanker named the "Condaleeza Rice" for crying out loud. Hint, Hint...(See also: cannabisnow.org and Americans for Safe Access for more information about the Federal war against medical cannabis.)The biggest lie advertisers push, aside from "a diamond is forever", where "advertising" is really "propaganda", is Reefer Madness - the massive lie that cannabis is "mean and evil, wicked and nasty" and socially unacceptable: bad for you, with no known uses outside of making ax-murderers and funding mean old terrorists. This is to make people continue to de-value cannabis's potential, slander it in the mass media, to make discussion of it impossible to take seriously, especially when news of that potential explodes from around the world and is still dredging up buried history of its use through the ages. It's all smugly presented as "caring about the children" or "saving lives", or "patriotism" but it's quite clear the few who benefit from the results of all this propaganda and prohibition (often referred to colloquially as "they") couldn't care less about you or me. We're surplus population, commodities to pump money into their off-shore accounts. Sparkley Rock Prohibition
Retail sales of diamond jewelry totaled 56 billion dollars last year worldwide. And nearly half of all the diamond jewelry in the world is sold in the United States. Of those diamonds destined for the U.S., all but a few of them pass through the Diamond District in New York. This district includes the blocks surrounding 47th Street and Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. De Beers practically invented diamond marketing: a diamond is forever is the most recognized ad slogan line of the 20th century, according to Advertising Age. Ninety percent of all Americans know it. ARWOnce I started reading the history of diamonds, how sparkley rocks have become the embodiment of Love, I understood where much of the concept for James Bond came from. The history of diamonds is better than fiction. It's wild. When one looks at, it is seen that "they" will do anything, will go any distance to screw humankind out of what rightfully belongs to everybody. And shining a light on how rocks bring in $56 billion a year sheds light on how 3 generations of people could have had proper information about cannabis expunged and withheld from it.Diamonds are worthless, actually: they are basically sparkely rocks. Really cool rocks - no doubt; cool and a dollar gets you a cup of coffee (donuts are extra). But they way they have been made so valuable is exactly the same way that cannabis has been demonized - huge lies backed with powerful, pervasive advertising campaigns deliberately intent on changing the beliefs and values of whole countries. A light shined on diamond history shows how powerful advertising can be and how global monopolies are built and maintained. Like the construction of hot dogs, it's not a pretty sight. It would make great TV.Until the 1860's or so diamonds were only valuable because they were thought to be extremely scarce.Then diamonds were discovered all over South Africa. In deceased volcano cores - called diamond pipes (snicker, snicker) - along hundreds of miles of river beds and lying openly in the sand dunes, as in Sierra Leone. Diamonds were, of course, immediatly devalued.
Since then, one company has controlled almost all the diamonds on the planet - the De Beers Corporation, founded in South Africa by Cecil Rhodes. But the De Beers people haven't mined only diamonds; they've mined the American psyche to create a marketing juggernaut. "The first effect of discovering kimberlites was that it converted diamonds from a rare gem to an industrial product like copper or any other product that you can mine," said writer Edward Jay Epstein, whose 1982 book The Diamond Invention cast a sharp light on the diamond trade. Epstein says the discovery of kimberlite mines touched off a frenzy that propelled thousands of prospectors into fierce competition. And when the kimberlite gems hit western markets in the late 1800s, diamond prices plummeted from 500 dollars to ten cents a carat. *******
In 1910 Ernest Oppenheimer wrote 'Common sense tells us that the only way to increase the value of diamonds is to make them scarce, that is to reduce the production.' An uncontrolled flood of diamonds from the small mines onto the world market threatened the Syndicate's control of the market. So, in the interests of the diamond syndicate, Anglo American and De Beers, the South African government prepared new legislation. The Precious Stones Act of 1927 made it illegal to be found in possession of any diamond not registered with the police.[note: I have searched for more text on the Act, but have found just what is included. I originally heard it on PBS Frontline's "The Diamond Empire". It was an excellent program. Search for it now and you find a 2 paragraph blurb. It seems Frontline was "talked into" (coerced) into removing it. Read The Diamond Investigation for a bit more about that.]******In South Africa, most diamond mines were volcanic pipes, which could be isolated behind electrified ten-foot high barbwire fences. In central and west Africa, however, most diamonds were "mined" from streambeds that meandered over tens of thousands of miles of jungle. To recover these diamonds, natives needed only a shovel and a pan. Even though the governments had granted concessions to various diamond mining companies associated with De Beers, and had in theory banned anyone else from digging for diamonds, it was in practice impossible to enforce these regulations.So you can't grow a common plant and you cannot touch diamonds laying on the ground in your own country. Ain't Law grand?The Diamond Invention
The diamond invention was an ingenious scheme for sustaining the value of diamonds in an uncertain world. To begin with, it involved gaining control over the production of all the important diamond mines in the world. Next, a system was devised for allocating this controlled supply of gems to a select number of diamond cutters who all agreed to abide by certain rules intended to assure that the quantity of finished diamonds available at any given time never exceeded the public's demand for them. Finally, a set of subtle, but effective, incentives were devised for regulating the behavior of all the people who served and ultimately profited from the system.The invention had a wide array of diverse parts: these included a huge stockpile of uncut diamonds in a vault in London; a billion-dollar cash hoard deposited in banks in Europe; and private intelligence network operating out of Antwerp, Tel Aviv, Johannesburg and London; a global network of advertising agencies, brokers and distributors; corporate fronts in Africa for concealing massive diamond purchases; and private treaties with nations establishing quotas for annual production.***********The sights in London thus are not merely occasions for major gem manufacturers to select the uncut diamonds that they wish to purchase but an integral part of the mechanism through which De Beers establishes and maintains the value of diamonds. Through these ten events a year De Beers extends its control from the diamond mines of Africa to the cutting factories of Belgium, Israel, India, and the United States. And through its clients-whose fortunes depend heavily on the contents of the shoe boxes they receive-De Beers is able to monitor and regulate the flow of diamonds that pass through the world pipeline into the retail market. The stakes are undisputably high in this game.***********The invention is far more than merely a monopoly for fixing diamond prices; it is a mechanism for converting tiny crystals of carbon into universally recognized tokens of power and romance. For it to ultimately succeed, it must endow these stones with the sort of sentiment that would inhibit the public from ever reselling them onto the market. The illusion thus had to be inculcated into the mass mind that diamonds were forever-- "forever" in the sense that they could never be resold.Basically, the Debeers people crafted the most effective propaganda campaign ever with "a diamond is forever". This campaign equated love and individuality with something inherently worthless and masterfully exploited it for commercial gain. It caused people to fully believe something easily demonstrable as meaningless. There is nothing illegal about it. Ethics, again, are another story. (We don't need no stinkin' ethics!)If a toaster doesn't toast, you can take it back. Complain. If it sets your house on fire, you can sue. If you get divorced, Can you sue DeBeers? No. Do we get our 2-months salary (plus court costs) returned? No.A diamond is a lie. The meaning is simply made-up. It doesnt mean "love" at all - unless you and your significant other decide it does. But have you decided because that is what you 2 want? or have you simply bought into the lie?A handful of people 80 years ago decided to make hundreds of millions people believe something untrue and wanted them to feel on the wrong side of public opinion if they didn't go along.
De Beers and Ayer set out to create a new myth that would make the diamond engagement ring a necessity for every couple. It quickly proved so profitable that De Beers spent about half a million pounds every year of the Second World War, a vast sum in those days, to ensure this myth was believed by all Americans. An Ayer report of August 1940 stated that it had prepared and placed in 9 months 3,500 diamond movie stories and 16,500 diamond news stories. Diamond stories were placed in all high circulation magazines, including in Readers Digest, in the New York Evening News, in Brides Magazine and in teenage periodicals******De Beers ran a series of 'patriotic advertisements' explaining every gem diamond purchased helped fund the production of industrial diamonds. This wasn't strictly true. De Beers already had in its vaults nearly all the gems it was marketing. It had closed the mines that produced the best gems and tool diamonds at the outbreak of war, leaving open only the Congo mines that produced at the cheapest cost the poorer quality industrial diamonds it was supplying to American industry...*******... The American Justice Department fumed: 'This form of profiteering is the more obnoxious because it involves a most vital war material and because it has been accompanied by pious public professions of sacrifice... they are making a profit of 200 to 300%'... Sparkle.comFirst the US, then Japan -
In Japan, the matrimonial custom had survived feudal revolutions, world wars, industrialization and even the American occupation. Up until the mid-1960s, Japanese parents arranged proper marriages for their children through trusted 'intermediaries. The ceremony was then consummated, according to Shinto law, by the bride and groom both drinking rice wine from the same wooden bowl. This simple arrangement had persisted for more than a millennium. There was no tradition for romance, courtship, seduction and prenuptial love in Japan; and no tradition that required the gift of a diamond engagement ring.Then, in 1967, halfway around the world, a South African diamond company decided to change the Japanese courtship ritual. It retained J. Walter Thompson, the largest advertising agency in the world, to embark on a campaign to popularize diamond engagement rings in Japan. It was not an easy task. Even the quartering of millions of American soldiers in Japan for a decade had not resulted in any substantial Japanese interest in giving diamonds as a token of love.Until 1959 the importation of diamonds had not even been permitted by the postwar Japanese government.When the campaign began in 1968, less than 5 percent of Japanese women getting married received a diamond engagement ring. By 1972 the proportion had risen to 27 percent. By 1978, half of all Japanese women who were married wore a diamond on their ring finger. And, by 1981, some 6o percent of Japanese brides wore diamonds. In a mere thirteen years, the fifteen-hundred-year Japanese tradition was radically revised.Edward J. Epstein[go read the entire page of this link -I was tempted to include the whole thing.]I hope the point about the immense power of advertising and propaganda is fairly clear. The Once and Future Superplant
Modern technology was about to be applied to hemp production, making it the number one agricultural resource in America. Two of the most respected and influential journals in the nation, Popular Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering, forecast a bright future for American hemp. Thousands of new products creating millions of new jobs heralded the end of the Great Depression. Instead hemp was persecuted, outlawed, and forgotten at the bidding of W. R. Hearst who branded hemp the Mexican killer weed, marijuana.[Further].....in light of subsequent developments (e.g., biomass energy technology, building materials, etc.), we now know that hemp is the world's most important ecological resource and therefore, potentially our planet's single largest industry.Electric Emperor.comThe full weight and power of the advertising industry has been brought to bear on it, whether about Hemp, or medical usage, or personal, to defame it's character, to slander it's potential, and demonize it's existence and supporters.The same effort that went into lying about diamonds, if not more, has been expended by government and private corporations alike to cause generations of Americans and other nations to forget about the commerical and medical potential of the cannabis plant. Because it can't be patented or monopolized, it is suppressed. Now that Oil is on the wane, this issue is merely going to become more important.Among modern reform efforts Cannabis is often presented as "just" a natural and renewable resource, or it's "just" for medical reasons, or just for food. This is quite true, but the intent is to "compartmentalize" cannabis as one thing or another is a means of "sanitizing it", justifying it in terms laid down by the Overseers of Consumer Society. The Hemp Industry, for example, tries hard to avoid the "marijuana" label, to the point of saying they are actually 2 separate plants ("Hemp: marijuana's cousin" or something like that.) Without the hell of prohibition foist upon us everybody but fools would know hemp has no joyous recreational properties. And they wouldn't have to bend over backwards to promote their industry. Or provide the DEA with its GPS coodinates, so they can watch it by satellite. Your taxes hard at work.The point I wish to drive home is that cannabis must be looked at "synergystically": it simply transcends the sum of it's myriad uses. It is more than just "medicine" or "soap" or "fiber", or "herb". It is a complete Means of Production - just like oil - but without oil's 3 main drawbacks: pollution, pollution, and pollution.Cannabis is the "Superplant" - an environmentally (and socially) friendy, low-cost, sustainable, renewable well-spring of a natural resource, capable of producing many, many very different things. It belongs on every farm, right along with corn and soybeans. Both those plants can be made into a myriad of things as well, but cannabis simply and handily outdoes either in terms of ease of growing and variety of by-products. Imagine banning corn or soybeans. After all, corn makes whiskey, a dangerous and addictive (and flammable) drug that often is used by children. Bizarre concept, yes? Same issue with cannabis really. It's Crop prohibition. Farm Prohibition. Self-reliance -and- autonomy prohibition. Free market prohibition. Consume and be dependent on the products of an artifical monopoly, squandering your innate worth in pursuit of shiny things.Since somebody invaribly annoys us with what is technically a non-sequiter of a question: "what about these rumors of marijuana being much more potent"?, let's look at that now. This is one of the single biggest ploys used to derail "drug and non-drug" discussions of cannabis reform, aside from "What about the children?". A number of factors play into this appearence: The pure propaganda of the Federal Government, the absence of meaningful "THC Data" from the 1960's, improper growing and storage, but not the least being intentional breeding of desired qualities. Just like corn, pigs, beans, tomatos, lab mice, etc...cannabis can be easily manipulated to produce desired strains. All of these factors have combined together to make current testing of thc levels probably fairly meaningless. With all industrial and medicial applications vehemently prohibited, only the recreational growth and research aspect has been able to flourish, and yes, it has improved. Cannabis can doubtlessly be bred to produce not only better and more potent marijuana, but also diverse fibers, specific medications, specific qualities of hempseed oils, and so on are possible. Aside from jet fuel and gasoline- and engagement rings - cannabis appears to be able to fabricate what ever one wants to imagine. That's why it's suppressed.Cannabis as a means of Production
Gimme fuel, Gimme fire, Gimme that which I desire!"Metallica
Iso-chanvre (chanvre is French for hemp),a rediscovered French building material made form hemp hurds mixed with lime, actually petrifies into a mineral state and lasts for many centuries. Archeologists have found a bridge in the south of France, from the Merovingian period, built with this process. Hemp has been used throughout history for carpet backing. Hemp fiber has potential in the manufacture of strong, rot-resistant carpeting--eliminating the poisonous fumes of burning synthetic materials in a house or commercial fire, along with allergic reactions associated with new synthetic carpeting, which may outgas volatile toxic fumes for months or even years, endangering human health.Plastic plumbing pipes (PVC pipes) can be manufactured using renewable hemp cellulose as the chemical feedstocks, replacing nonrenewable coal or petroleum-based chemical feedstocks.So we can envision a house of the future built, plumbed, painted, and furnished with the world's number-one renewable resource--hemp.******A cotton shirt in 1776 cost $100 to $200, while a hemp shirt cost $0.50 to $1. By the 1830s, cooler, lighter cotton shirts were on par in price with the warmer, heavier, hampen shirts, providing a competitive choice, thanks to government subsidies.People were able to choose their garments based upon the particular qualities they wanted in a fabric. Today we have no such choice. Conventional cotton growing, which depletes and pollutes our nonrenewable resources, is still heavily subsidized by the government, masking the true costs of production and costs to the environment, whereas hemp is not allowed to be grown at all in the US (hopefully this is changing, for our planet's sake!).The role of hemp and other natural fibers should be determined by the market of supply and demand and personal tastes and values, not by the undue influence of prohibition laws, federal subsidies and huge tariffs that are designed to keep the natural fabrics from replacing synthetic fibers. Sixty years of government suppression of information has resulted in virtually no public knowledge of the incredible potential of the hemp fiber or its uses.By using 100% hemp or mixing hemp with cotton, you will be able to pass on your shirts, pants, and other clothing to your grandchildren.Intelligent spending could essentially replace the use of petrochemical synthetic fibers such as nylon and polyester with tougher, cheaper, cool, absorbent, breathable, biodegradable natural fibers such as hemp and flax.Rawganique.comIn the early 20th century Rudolph diesel invented an engine specifically designed to produce usable - serious - power off of farm by-products. Biodiesel was that product. By the early 1930's it was largely perfected for the time and was state-of-the art. In the late 1930's an oil-based diesel fuel was developed and biofuels were shelved. I have grown up with people desparaging the diesel engine:I think I now know why. The more I think about all this the more I am interested in a certain reputable 24 valve DOHC inline 6 turbodiesel engine. Imagine engines like that and plentiful fuel to run them. No scare stories about decaying into a post-industrial stone age. No need to push ahead with an unjust and unwanted war.Also in the 1930's was when cannabis was fully demonized, morphed by wealthy men from agricultural staple and emerging Superplant into an Evil, insanity-producing Weed and it remains viciously repressed to this date. Oil was to be the dominant fuel, indeed the dominant means of production, of the 20th Century, causing a billion people to purchase and become dependent on vast spectrum of products from a handful of people and nothing was gonna cut in on that gig.
We believe that the main reason hemp is illegal today is because of biodiesel's potential. The first diesel engines (by Rudolph Diesel in 1894) were invented to run on hempseed oil; petroleum wasn't synthesized to mimic hempseed oil for over a decade. Therefore hempseed oil was the primary fuel for automobiles for over 30 years after the invention of the first internal combustion engine.Entry into the biodiesel market has very low capital entry requirements and is, therefore, not centralized. Among the benefits of using biodiesel:
Start an economic boom!
Use vegetable seed oil (biodiesel).
Run any diesel engine with no engine conversion at all.
Make biodiesel from hemp, soybean, rapeseed/canola and safflower seed oil
Save family farms. 
Return economic control to the people!
Naturally decentralize wealth.
Stop global warming.
Stop A lot of toxic pollution.
Create a useful byproduct: food. CRRH[See also: Popular Mechanics "Billion Dollar" Crop Article from 1938]The Sacred Hoop
Now, my friend, let us smoke together so that there may be only good between us.- Black ElkSo, the primacy of oil, the value of diamonds and the uselessness and evil of cannabis are all gigantic lies perpetuated by a few, vast corporations, via the application of hi-powered advertising, in concert with government laws specifically prohibiting people from touching cannabis and diamonds. This results in hoarded wealth and control over the masses. Kept in debt, constantly giving money to the 1% one way or another, we are talking about millions of people in peonage to a few. People die for these lies hourly. Lives are ruined, whole peoples oppressed, countries destabilized; being global, it doesn't get any bigger or uglier. America under G. W. Bush is going to attack Iraq to get at 112 billion barrels of pure power and profit.Sooner or later though, Iraq or no Iraq, Colombia or no Colombia (it's about oil too), Oil will become so expensive the consumer society won't work. We will not go sliding into the stone age as oil propanda would have us believe. Things will change, probably be re-arranged. Worse things could happen, says dear old Dad. But when the monoply is dissolved the hoarded wealth will begin to be re-arranged. Tied deeply to the demonization of cannabis is the idea that people legally growing it could be growing "money", essentially. Cannabis could continue to be sold for "drug" purposes" - though I would expect the profits to fall sharply upon legalization. The only reason marijuana is currently valued more than gold, ounce for ounce, is because of prohibition which increases the risk of transporting it. If I could grow my own - without fear of ruination, imprisonment, forfieture of my home, or being shot to death by Federal Pot-NAZIs (No pot for you!) - I'd not be giving money to people for it. More likely is that legal cannabis would jump-start America's near-dead family farm.  Industrial hemp demand should far outstrip demands for recreational cannabis, and medical-grade cannabis for smoking is already healthily established in North America, despite the guerilla war being waged by the DEA. Unlike diamonds, no lie needs be concocted, no advertising bought. Cannabis's innate value as a potent means of production would take care of that.The aversion to this sort of freedom seems basically unchanged from the time white culture despised the successes of the native way of living. The notion one can live owing little or nothing to someone else, free to do as one sees fit and necesasary is simply heresy in the context of the consumer society. The Spirit of Freedom - living in harmony with the earth, living sustainably, even the rebirth of the Native People's Sacred Hoop to include all peoples - is deeply tied into this whole scenario, but beyond the scope of this article.And again, Jack Herer is totally correct - I always thought he was overstating the case: Cannabis can essentially save the world. See: The Emporer wears no Clothes in pdfJust the ending of cannabis prohibition will save countless lives, help throw a wrench into this sinful massive hoarding of wealth, and maybe, just maybe, tip the scales back towards "Fair" a little tiny bit. Just a bit - there's still lots of ways to screw humankind, so there's no need for the fat cats to get all sweaty.Combine cannabis legalization along with unsuppressed development of solar and wind, and oil is reduced to it's proper place - an important but not dominant means of production. Since it is running out it would seem smart to try and use it as wisely and sparingly as possible. Instead of depleting oil and polluting the atmosphere and poisoning the environment, allowing cannabis to do its thing would be a more conservative and harmonius way of addressing the uses of multiple means of production. I hate to use such heretical languge, but it's Natural.Ending the monopoly of oil would be a step towards more equitable and natural distribution of world "capital". As long as cannabis is prohibited, markets are not free. It would let Light shine in on the Dark Age of Petroleum Man, to intervene in and halt its crimes of greed and excess. To turn the world back from Infinite War. To snuff out the fire of "terrorism". Address poverty and starvation at home and abroad. To rebuild the Sacred Hoop. It is an opportunity to do something massively harmonious. The natural flourishing of multiple sustainable means of production whose technologies are here, in conjunction with efficient use of oil, offers a future of plentiful energy and material necessities to be spread around. The resources of the Natural World can be shared with everybody in peace, not hoarded by a tiny handful of people and secured by lies, razorwire and armies.xxdr_zombiexx9.22.2002Footnotes and dangling ideas:
Ever see the footage from Africa with the massive herds of water buffalo spanning across the panorama? Bison during the Native's Time were the same way: huge mobile seas of robust animals. The Native Peoples, in additon to "living of the land" specifically lived off of the bison, and the deer. Meat, hide, sinew for stitching to make clothes out of hide, fat for soap, bone for needles, etc... All of it contributed to the succes of the native lifestyle.White society, full of Manifest Destiny and covetous of Native Terrirtories, devalued and despised the freedom and self-reliance of the Native people. It's very clear this sort of living off nature for "free" would not be tolerated in the Modern Consumer America. As slavery morphed into the peonage system, white man had decided to end the Native way of living by eliminating their means of production - the bison.The bison were slaughtered by the millions. The Natives faced the choice of capitulating to the Reservation System or starve and be hunted by soldiers. What they called the Sacred Hoop was smashed by the " Progress of Man". With the reservation system came depedence on the government for handouts - death to their free lifestyle - and the slow suffocation of the remains of their culture. Read Peter Nabakov - Native American Testimony See also : Healing the Sacred Hoop, which is really good.The native people's historic lifestyle, as well as the lifestyles and cultures of "primitive peoples' around the world, have invaluable knowledge and tremendous wisdom to share with the so-called "modern" world in terms of developing a sustainable and rich way of life without burning a million barrels of oil each day. There is apparently a lot more to life than a great lease on an SUV.
The TV is in a class by itself. It is, essentially, a very powerful drug: addictive, hypnotic, narcotic, seducing people into suspending their reflective thought in order to simply passively recieve any and all messages broadcast. TV is so powerful that "if it's not on TV is ain't real: and If I saw it on TV it must be true". People really do buy into this. I cannot stress enough how important I think it is for people to have an extremely critical eye towards TV and TV advertising. The Power of TV elevates advertising and propaganda to something as close to "mind control" as we'd like for these sorts of people to get. Just my perspective.
Small versus large farms... According to a 1992 U.S. Agricultural Census report, relatively smaller farm sizes are 2 to 10 times more productive per unit acre than larger ones. The smallest farms surveyed in the study, those of 27 acres or less, are more than ten times as productive (in dollar output per acre) than large farms (6,000 acres or more), and extremely small farms (4 acres or less) can be over a hundred times as productive. In a last-gasp effort to save their efficiency myth, agribusinesses will claim that at least larger farms are able to make more efficient use of farm labor and modern technology than are smaller farms. Even this claim cannot be maintained. There is virtual consensus that larger farms do not make as good use of even these production factors because of management and labor problems inherent in large operations. Mid-sized and many smaller farms come far closer to peak efficiency when these factors are calculated. It is generally agreed that an efficient farming system would be immensely beneficial for society and our environment. It would use the fewest resources for the maximum sustainable food productivity. Heavily influenced by the "bigger is better" myth, we have converted to industrial agriculture in the hopes of creating a more efficient system. We have allowed transnational corporations to run a food system that eliminates livelihoods, destroys communities, poisons the earth, undermines biodiversity, and doesn't even feed the people. All in the name of efficiency. It is indisputable that this highly touted modern system of food production is actually less efficient, less productive than small-scale alternative farming. It is time to reembrace the virtues of small farming, with its intimate knowledge of how to breed for local soils and climates; its use of generations of knowledge and techniques like intercropping, cover cropping, and seasonal rotations; its saving of seeds to preserve genetic diversity; and its better integration of farms with forest, woody shrubs, and wild plant and animal species. In other words, it's time to get efficient. "The Seven Deadly Myths of Industrial Agriculture"Other references used:
current matters of diamond industry strategy
American Radio Works
Edward J. Epstein
The End of Oil Kind thanx to Logos of Marijuana.com for "spiritual feedback, not otherwise specified".
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Last night I was visited by Aliens from another planet. I was not abducted, poked or prodded. I was not informed of any Alien invasion. I was not mistreated, tortured, water-boarded or made a prisoner.
Instead, I was offered something of great value to all humankind.
The Aliens made a peace offering. They said they would give me a miracle plant. They told me this plant would cure ailments as simple as nausea to diseases as bad as cancer. They said this plant can also fuel our vehicles as a non-toxic fuel alternative. They said that the miracle plant could also be used to build houses as strong as any brick house and more environmentally-friendly. They said we could make paper, clothing and many other items out of this miracle plant.
They said it would not only do all these things, but that it would also make people happy, help them sleep, help them eat, help them become more creative and help people live longer.
They also said we've had this miracle plant on Planet Earth for thousands of years....
... they said it was called Marijuana.
LEGALIZE MARIJUANA - END PROHIBITION