Tuesday, March 30, 2010

When Workers Battle Workers

In Upton Sinclair's words: "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it."


Wednesday, March 10 2010 @ 06:24 PM UTC

Long battles erupted today at the Athens protest march against the measures. The GSEE union boss was heavily beaten by protesters while battles with the cops developed for 3 hours all across the centre of the city after riot police attacked anti-Nazi resistance symbol Manolis Glezos..
All was quiet until the GSEE union boss Mr Panagopoulos took the microphone to address the protest. Before managing to utter more than five words, the hated union boss was attacked by all kinds of protestors who first heckled him and threw bottles of water and yogurt on his face and then attacked him physically like a giant swarm. With bruises, cuts and his clothes torn, the PASOK lackey struggled his way towards police lines, as the people attacked again and again. Finally he managed to hide behind the
Presidential Guard and up the steps of the Parliament where the hated austerity measures were being voted. The crowd below encouraged him to go where he belongs, to the lair of thieves, murderers and liars.
What the bourgeois media call the "lynching" of the union supreme boss became a prime subject of infight within the parliament with the government accusing the Radical Left Coalition that the attackers originated from its block (GSEE itself blaming KOE, a Maoist group of the Coalition), a half-truth at best. The
Communist Party has refused to condemn the attack, only noting it disagrees with it. This is the first time such a high ranking union boss is attacked at a rally that its union has called, and the act is widely believed to mark a new era in union history in greece. The initial phase of the attack against the union boss can be seen here: Video Bar "The Greek Trumka".

Monday, March 29, 2010

Did You Melt Down?

Too Much Institutional Thinking:

Fiery veteran surrenders peacefully after standoff

After dispute with wife, he says he's been married 'too damn long'

9 Teenagers Accused of Bullying That Led to Suicide:

The prosecutor brought charges Monday against nine teenagers, saying their taunting and physical threats were beyond the pale and led the freshman, Phoebe Prince, to hang herself from a stairwell in January.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Blog Of The Week

Stockholm Syndrome in the Last Empire Standing


I still have to punch myself in the face every few minutes in order to wake myself up from the twisted, completely fucked up Orwellian daymare that our existence has become.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

One Man Gangs

We Must Save Ourselves:


Loneliness doesn't just cause wear and tear on the psyche — it may also affect blood pressure.

University of Chicago researchers surveyed 229 people ages 50 to 68 who were part of the Chicago Health, Aging and Social Relations Study, a multi-year study of white, black and Latino men and women. Participants were asked to rate their feelings about statements such as "I lack companionship," "I feel in tune with the people around me" and "My social relationships are superficial." Other features about the participants were noted, such as smoking status, physical activity levels, body mass index and cardiovascular health.

The participants were monitored for five years. People who ranked as feeling most lonely had blood pressure levels 14.4 points higher than those who felt the least lonely. Increases in systolic blood pressure were cumulative, so those who had higher levels of loneliness at the beginning of the study had greater blood pressure increases over the years.

The findings held true when researchers accounted for factors such as age, race and ethnicity, gender, cardiovascular risk factors and depression.

The study appears in the March issue of the journal Psychology and Aging.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Planet Of The Damned

Work Kills More People Than War

Posted by Ralph Bernardo on March 19, 2010

Here is another chapter from Russ Kick’s classic bite-size Disinformation book 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know, published in 2003.

For more on Russ Kick, check out his website, The Memory Hole.


The United Nations’ International Labor Organization has revealed some horrifying stats:

The ILO estimates that approximately two million workers lose their lives annually due to occupational injuries and illnesses, with accidents causing at least 350,000 deaths a year. For every fatal accident, there are an estimated 1,000 non-fatal injuries, many of which result in lost earnings, permanent disability and poverty.

The death toll at work, much of which is attributable to unsafe working practices, is the equivalent of 5,000 workers dying each day, three persons every minute. This is more than double the figure for deaths from warfare (650,000 deaths per year). According to the ILO’s SafeWork programme, work kills more people than alcohol and drugs together and the resulting loss in Gross Domestic Product is 20 times greater than all official development assistance to the developing countries.

Each year, 6,570 US workers die because of injuries at work, while 60,225 meet their maker due to occupational diseases. (Meanwhile, 13.2 million get hurt, and 1.1 million develop illnesses that don’t kill them.) On an average day, two or three workers are fatally shot, two fall to their deaths, one is killed after being smashed by a vehicle, and one is electrocuted. Each year, around 30 workers die of heat stroke, and another 30 expire from carbon monoxide.

Although blue collar workers face a lot of the most obvious dangers, those slaving in offices or stores must contend with toxic air, workplace violence, driving accidents, and (especially for the health-care workers) transmissible diseases. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration warns that poisonous indoor air in nonindustrial workplaces causes “[t]housands of heart disease deaths [and] hundreds of lung cancer deaths” each year.

But hey, everybody has to go sometime, right? And since we spend so much of our lives in the workplace, it’s only logical that a lot of deaths happen — or at least are set into motion — on the job. This explanation certainly is true to an extent, but it doesn’t excuse all such deaths. The International Labor Organization says that half of workplace fatalities are avoidable. In A Job to Die For, Lisa Cullen writes:

In the workplace, few real accidents occur because the surroundings and operations are known; therefore, hazards can be identified. When harm from those hazards can be foreseen, accidents can be prevented….

Most jobs have expected, known hazards. Working in and near excavations, for example, poses the obvious risks of death or injury from cave-in …. When trenches or excavations collapse because soil was piled right up to the edge, there is little room to claim it was an accident.

References: International Labor Organization. “Workers’ Memorial Day Ceremony to Focus on Emergency Workers, Firefighters.” Press release, 24 Apr 2002. • Cullen, Lisa. A Job to Die For: Why So Many Americans Are Killed, Injured or Made Ill at Work and What to Do About It. Common Courage Press, 2002. This book uses the following as its sources for the US statistics I’ve cited: Bureau of Labor Statistics and Costs of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses by J. Paul Leigh (University of Michigan Press, 2000).


Look for more 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know under the tag “50 Things” on disinfo.com.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Drugs To Kill By

Societal Ills Compounded:

At least one in six service members is on some form of psychiatric drug.

“It’s really a large-scale experiment. We are experimenting with changing people’s cognition and behavior,” said Dr. Grace Jackson, a former Navy psychiatrist.

A Military Times investigation of electronic records obtained from the Defense Logistics Agency shows DLA spent $1.1 billion on common psychiatric and pain medications from 2001 to 2009. It also shows that use of psychiatric medications has increased dramatically — about 76 percent overall, with some drug types more than doubling — since the start of the current wars.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Go To School To Learn

Schools Isn't Life. Life Is Worse:

Cornell posts lookouts on bridges after three people leap to their death

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Labor Beat: Welcome Peacemakers SOA 2000

3400 people "crossed the line" in this pre-911 annual protest at the gates of Fort Benning, GA.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Simply Understood

No Escaping The Work Camp:
Casias said he went to work every day during his five years at WalMart. "I gave them everything," he said. "One hundred and ten percent every day. Anything they asked me to do, I did. More than they asked me to do. Twelve to 14 hours a day."

Then Casias sprained his knee at work last November. During the routine drug screening that follows all workplace injuries, marijuana was detected in his system.

Casias showed WalMart managers his Michigan medical marijuana card, but was fired anyway.

Friday, March 12, 2010

What A World

Do You Always Stand Idly By?:

These haunting pictures show the extent to which a man with learning difficulties suffered 17 years of torment at the hands of youths, before he collapsed and died in his garden.

A film captured on a mobile phone shows how David Askew's agitators would stand inches from his garden fence and hurl abuse at him.

On Wednesday the 64-year-old could take no more and, as he tried to protect his property, he suffered a suspected heart attack and died on the spot.

David Askew

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Passive/Aggressive Prayer

Another Academic Institution of Higher Stress:
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State University says a 51-year-old employee suspected of shooting two co-workers, one of them fatally, has died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.


I will listen and listen hard. I will formulate what I hear into a thoughtful response. I will not condemn, belittle, diminish, degrade or insult the speaker. I will say Please and Thank You with every statement. I will not encourage anger. I will not be confrontational. I will be confident in my bearing and foster confidence in others. I will develop a deeper understanding and a kinder spirit. My character will improve. My integrity will grow. I will stand taller.

Life's difficult situations demand a stronger internal fortitude. My personal survival is at stake. Surrounding myself with people of weak character will bring me down to their level. Bringing people up the scale is my reason for living. A lifetime of improvement is my future.

Learn from the least. Listen to the softest speaker. Be most kind to the most angry. I will accept the challenge.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Message From Space

Repeat. Do you read? Do you read? Are you in trouble? If you are in trouble, have you sought help? If you did, did help come? If it did, did you accept it? Are you out of trouble? What is the character of your consciousness? Are you conscious? Do you have a self? Do you know who you are? Do you know what you are doing? Do you love? Are you loved? Do you hate? Do you read me? Come back. Repeat. Come back. Come back. Come back.

- Lost in the Cosmos
Walker Percy

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Tim Field Remembered

Very Helpful Website:

Question: What is the profile of the typical bully?

Answer: Over 90% of the cases reported to the UK National Workplace Bullying Advice Line involve a serial bully who can be recognised by their behaviour profile which includes compulsive lying, a Jekyll and Hyde nature, an unusually high verbal facility, charm and a considerable capacity to deceive, an arrested level of emotional development, and a compulsive need to control. The serial bully rarely commits a physical assault or an arrestable offence, preferring instead to remain within the realms of psychological violence and non-arrestable offences.

Question: What are bullying's typical outcomes?

Answer: In the majority of cases, the target of bullying is eliminated through forced resignation, unfair dismissal, or early or ill- health retirement whilst the bully is promoted. After a short interval of between 2-14 days, the bully selects another target and the cycle restarts. Sometimes another target is selected before the current target is eliminated.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Mirror Time

I'm cracking up:
A 45-year-old woman, charged with ending a domestic dispute by killing her 26-year-old husband of five days, is a registered lobbyist for a group fighting domestic violence.

Does This Remind You Of Anyone You Know?

The first rule for dealing with a passive-aggressive personality is to refrain from getting into a power struggle. They have had a lifetime of practice in doing this and you probably will not win this struggle. In the end, you will likely end up being frustrated and the other person will feel like they have won a battle against you.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

It's Everywhere

Communication Dysfunction:
Dear Amy: What's a parent to do when their child is being bullied relentlessly by peers on Facebook? As a parent who monitors my kids' Facebook communications, I'm disgusted by the ongoing profanity-filled sniping and attacks by individuals and groups alike.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Jobs, Or Lack Of, Are Killing Us

Murder By Proxy: How America Went Postal Trailer

Deeper Trouble Than Lack of Money:

When Youngstown, Ohio, factory workers started losing their jobs in the 1980s, labor researcher and advocate John Russo invited local doctors to meet with a stress expert to prepare them for the onslaught of medical problems sure to come.

"None of the doctors was interested," said Russo, who is co-director with Sherry Linkon of the Center for Working-Class Studies at Youngstown State University. "Nobody wanted to acknowledge that losing your job could hurt your health, even after it was clear that it was happening. Heart disease, strokes, depression, diabetes -- it can take up to five years for these to manifest after losing a job, but we were definitely seeing it.