Sunfrog (Andy “Sunfrog” Smith)
Communes in the 21st Century “Do you all sleep in the same room?”

a review of

Communities Directory: A Guide to Intentional Communities and Cooperative Living, Third Edition, Jillian Downey and Elph Morgan, eds., 2000, $30 from the Fellowship for Intentional Community, www.ic.org, or RR 1, Box 156-D, Rutledge, MO 63563

“We tried living communally in the Sixties and it didn’t work.” “I didn’t know communes still existed, except in California.” “Do you all sleep in the same room?”

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Andy Sunfrog (Andy “Sunfrog” Smith)
Group Sex Communal Ethics of Eroticism, Free Love and the Extended Family

Fifth Estate Note: Since his 1991 review/essay “Operation Gender Blur” [FE #336, Spring, 1991] Sunfrog has written about radical sexuality for the Fifth Estate. Both 1992’s “Pornography and Pleasure: Beyond Capital, Beyond Patriarchy” [FE #340, Autumn 1992] and 1993’s “Queer Anarchy: Anarcha-Faggots Demand to be De-Manned, a (de)Manifesto” [FE #342, Summer 1993] garnered extensive reactions from our readers, from thankful praise to condemnatory criticism. With “Group Sex,” we welcome the return of Sunfrog’s thoughtful, passionate, and uncompromising erotic politics to our pages.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Judi Bari bombing case to go to trial

Three hundred and fifty supporters of two Earth First! forest defense activists rallied outside the San Francisco FBI field office May 24 on the tenth anniversary of the day when a shrapnel-stuffed pipe bomb exploded in a car driven by Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney, crippling her.

3-f-355-fall-winter-2000-judi-bari-bombing-case-to-1.png
(Ieft) Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney, victims of an assassin’s bomb, playing earlier at a Redwood Summer benefit. (right) The car they were driving when the bomb exploded.

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Kerry Mogg
Reaction to the Calgary Oil Congress Protests They evacuated the Cows

Environmental activists, anarchists, and other concerned individuals began organizing against the June 2000 meeting of the World Petroleum Congress in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, six months in advance of the event.

The Congress, founded in 1933, is composed of such oil producing nations as the U.S., Canada, Croatia, Indonesia Kuwait Nigeria and Libya. Its focus is industry issues, such as down-playing global warming.

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Walker Lane (Peter Werbe)
Saying No to Nader

In the year since the anti-capitalist/anti-corporate demonstrations in Seattle, intense actions have occurred in Washington DC, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, London, Prague, and dozens of other cities across this country and the world.

They have functioned as models of resistance to global capitalism’s exploitation of labor, environmental degradation, and state repression Hence, it is disturbing to see some activists now advocating participation in the domesticated arena of electoral politics.

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Allan Antliff
Mark Antliff

Sexual Anarchy The Monument to Oscar Wilde

The Pere Lachaise Cemetery in Paris contains many tombs honoring artists and rebels, but the most striking of them all is the monument to the gay English playwright and anarchist Oscar Wilde. [1]

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Oscar Wilde’s Paris tomb became a battleground for sexual liberation.

The story of Wilde’s trial for homosexuality and subsequent imprisonment in England is well-known. After his release from jail in 1897, he fled to the continent and settled in Paris. He died there in exile in 1900 and was quietly buried in Pere Lachaise.

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Sunfrog (Andy “Sunfrog” Smith)
Support Your Local Utopia Vachel Lindsay’s Golden Book

a review of

The Golden Book of Springfield, Vachel Lindsay, 1920, Re-Introduction by Ron Sakolsky, 1999, Charles H. Kerr Publishers, Chicago

Nearly three decades after moving to central Illinois to share radical ideas with students at Sangamon State college, activist-writer-anarchist-musicologist-deejay-and-dreamer Ron Sakolsky is planting the seeds of his exodus from the job that brought him there, at the now sanitized, corporatized, and renamed University of Illinois at Springfield.

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Ron Sakolsky
The Ludic Path to Utopia

a review of

Utopian Prospects, Communal Projects: Visionary Experiments in Literature and Everyday Life, Andy Sunfrog Smith, self-published, 2000, 65 pages, $12. Available from the author, post paid, at 1467 Pumpkin Hollow Rd. Liberty, TN 37095

As the late Middle Western novelist, Meridel Le Sueur, once advised her younger anarchist biographer Neala Schleuning in relation to a question about her philosophy, “That’s the problem with you intellectuals. You constantly want to analyze. Life’s not like that. I’m not like that. Writing isn’t like that. Not real writing. You have to be in a wholly different place. Get rid of those dead, lifeless forms! How do they teach you to write? Beginning, middle, end? That’s not life. And that’s not writing.” As the illusions of objective scholarly research fell away at Merida’s prodding, Schleuning’s approach was liberated from the weight of academic posturing, and the insightful nature of her understanding of the subject of her thesis was heightened accordingly.

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Max Cafard
The Tao of Capitalism Or, Going with the (Cash) Flow

Lao Tzu was the mythic “Old Sage” of ancient China. We’re not sure whether he actually existed, but we do know that he founded Taoist philosophy. His legendary Tao te Ching, the “Classic of the Way and its Power,” is a subtle treatise that radically challenges our views of everything—including ourselves, nature and the world around us. I like to call it “The Anarchist Prince,” for just as Machiavelli’s The Prince is a manual for rulers who wish to learn to rule, Lao Tzu’s classic is written for rulers who want to learn how not to rule.

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Mosa Charlo
Anxiety Disorders, Mental Hospitals & Other Modern Evils An inside look

This is dedicated to all those who are suffering.

In the Summer of 1998, following a fed-up trip to city life, I resolved to live without electricity or running water in a trailer in Montana in complete social isolation. How long it would last I hadn’t considered. Turns out it was a year before the hermitism (literally not speaking to a soul for six months, broken only by a passerby requesting directions, and thereafter resumed), and tedium took its toll.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Detroit Seen

Welcome to the Fall/Winter 2000 Fifth Estate which follows our Spring 2000 edition. This issue marks the 35th anniversary of this paper, now the longest running English language anarchist publication in U.S. history.

It’s quite a legacy, one we continue to build on, but only with your ongoing support. Thanks to everyone who subscribed, renewed, sent donations (especially our Sustainers), bought books, came by, wrote articles and letters, sent graphics and photos, and a hundred other things that make issues happen.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Tales from the Planet

Quick! Call the Anarchist Anti-Defamation League (AADL). It’s bad enough when every corporate media outlet uses anarchism as a synonym for chaos, but now an English company has gone even further.

Superdrug PLC is marketing a commercial bath product line using the brand name “Anarchy,” complete with a circle A over the first letter, which includes a body shower gel they call “Havoc.” “Wreak Havoc,” the plastic container urges; “Get Refreshed.”

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Octavio Alberola
Farewell Comrade David Graeber’s Practical Anarchism

Perpignan, 18 September 2020

The untimely death of anthropologist and activist David Graeber has triggered a wave of emotion in social networks and, in the world press, generated headlines recognizing the intellectual worth of his wide-ranging work and militant activism.

Which is why, in the posthumous tributes, there have been frequent references—more or less well-meaning—to his anarchist activism and his conception of anarchism. Although it needs to be highlighted that he did not enjoy being classified as an “anarchist anthropologist” because, in his view, anarchism is a practice rather than an identity: “anarchism is a matter of doing, not of being.”

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Julie Herrada
Judaism and Anarchism Conference in Venice

Anarchists from all over Europe and the Americas, as well as several from Israel, attended an International Study Conference on Anarchism and Judaism, held in Venice, Italy, May 5–7.

It was organized by Milan’s Centro Studi Libertari Archivio G. Pinelli and the Centre International de Recherches sur l’Anarchisme in Lausanne, in collaboration with the Venice City Council and held on the University of Venice campus.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Masthead

The Fifth Estate is a cooperative, nonprofit project, publishing since 1965. The people who produce it are a group of friends who do so neither to secure wages nor as an investment in the newspaper industry, but to encourage resistance to an unjust and destructive society.

The Fifth Estate (ISSN No. 0015–0800) is published quarterly at 4632 Second Ave., Detroit, Michigan 48201 USA;

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Fifth Estate Collective
Mumia Appeal at Critical Phase

There is so much going on in the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal, the death row ex-Black Panther framed by a conspiracy of cops, prosecutors, judges, and politicians, that it would take pages to report it all.

We hope supporters of Mumia will avail themselves of the great amount of information necessary for an understanding of the case and the forces aligned against him who are intent on strapping an innocent man to the execution gurney.

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Walker Lane (Peter Werbe)
Worldwide Anarchy Demonstrations Across the World Oppose Globalized Capitalism

FE note: A quarterly publication cannot hope to keep up with fast breaking events such as the actions that have taken place against capitalist rule over the last year. However, we think it is urgent to report these stories to encourage more such activity, and also, if even belatedly, to counteract the lies posing in the corporate media as news.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Fifth Estate Books

Fifth Estate Books is located at 4632 Second Avenue, just south of W. Forest, in Detroit, in the same space as the Fifth Estate Newspaper. Hours vary, so please call before coming by.

HOW TO ORDER BY MAIL

1) List the title of the book, quantity, and the price of each;

2) add 10% for mailing costs—not less than $1.13 U.S. or $1.60 foreign (minimum for 4th class book rate postage);

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John Clark
Kropotkin’s Ideas Mutual aid, evolution and revolution, conflict resolution, social individuality, and the metaphysics of nature

a review of

Graham Purchase, Evolution & Revolution: An Introduction to the Life and Thought of Peter Kropotkin (Petersham, Australia: Jura Books, 1996)

Graham Purchase’s recent book, Evolution & Revolution, is a concise and generally useful assessment of Kropotkin’s-life and work from a social anarchist perspective. In addition to presenting a brief biography of the famous anarchist, Purchase analyses Kropotkin’s ideas on such topics as mutual aid, evolution and revolution, conflict resolution, social individuality, and the “metaphysics of nature.”

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Various Authors
Letters to the Fifth Estate

Fifth Estate Letters Policy

We welcome letters commenting on our articles, stating opinions, or giving reports of events in your area. We don’t guarantee to print everything received, but all letters are read by our staff and considered for publication.

Typed letters or ones on disk are appreciated, but not required. Length should not exceed two double-spaced pages. If you are interested in writing longer responses, please contact us.

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Fifth Estate Collective
News & Reviews

The 15 minutes of fame for Ted Kaczynski, the convicted Unabomber, are not up after all. He’s been in the news several times recently. Kaczynski is releasing an autobiographical account of his life, entitled Truth Versus Lie, printed by Context Media. This new, small, New York City publisher picked up the manuscript after hearing that Simon and Schuster rejected it.

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John Filiss
Against the Totality John Zerzan’s Against Civilization

a review of

Against Civilization: Readings and Reflections, edited by John Zerzan. Uncivilized Books, Eugene, Ore., 1999, 214 pp., $10 (available from FE Books)

Against Civilization is an essay collection taking the radical perspective that the society we toil ceaselessly to maintain and reform may not be worth sustaining.

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Alice Detroit
Technology: There’s the Rub Ken Knabb’s Public Secrets

a review of

Public Secrets, Ken Knabb, Bureau of Public Secrets, P.O. Box 1044, Berkeley, California 94701, 408 pp., $15 (available from FE Books)

Do radicals get more pleasure from life?

For most of us around the Fifth Estate, the answer is yes. We might not all agree on why, but our detachment from many of this society’s ideological bonds lets us laugh at, ridicule, and debunk antics of popes and politicians. We distinguish ourselves from obedient zeks and this gives us satisfaction.

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Julie Herrada
Joseph Labadie and the Labor Movement Life of a Detroit Anarchist

a review of

All-American Anarchist: Joseph A. Labadie and the Labor Movement, Carlotta R. Anderson, Wayne State University Press, Detroit, 1998, 324 pp., $34.95

As a native Detroiter, I was raised with a belief in the strength of the labor movement, the power of the unions, and the importance of the Almighty Henry Ford to the economic life of Detroit.

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Allan Antliff
Toronto’s Anarchist Free School Theory into Action

During last August’s Active Resistance gathering (see FE #352, Winter 1999) a discussion group on Community Organizing came up with a proposal to found a free school in Toronto.

I and others were approached to participate in the effort, and before long a core group of about eight people was meeting twice a week to hammer out the logistics. From the start we envisaged the school serving as a center for anarchist organizing and activism.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Undeterred by jail Bay Area pie throwers strike again

San Francisco—When San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown testified against the three homelessness activists who threw pies at him last November, he repeatedly urged the court to make an example of the defendants. (See FE #352, Winter 1999.)

The trial ended in a split verdict for members of the Biotic Baking Brigade (BBB), Rahula Janowski, Justin Gross, and Gerry Livernois. Jurors deliberated for over nine hours, finally acquitting the defendants of the heavier charge of assaulting a public official, while convicting them of simple battery.

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Montezuma
The Stronghold and the Shrine Does the sudden appearance of the mass, authoritarian state and fortified cities in human history after millennia of small band and tribal life suggest extraterrestrial intervention?

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Painting by Stephen Goodfellow

I contend the state is extraterrestrial (E.T.) in origin and that the city emanated from the state. The city is, therefore, also E.T. in origin. I will also demonstrate that the abolition of slavery necessitates the eradication of both. In the 1960s, author Erich Von Daniken asserted in his controversial Chariots of the Gods? that E.T.s had mated with monkeys and apes via artificial insemination and gene-splicing, producing early hominids. The repeating of the E.T. mating, gene-splicing process with hominids eventually produced Neanderthals and finally Homo Sapiens, according to Von Daniken.

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Heather Bowlan
More and Better Trouble

A review of

We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics edited by Andrea Abi-Karam and Kay Gabriel. Nightboat Books 2020

We Want It All is a big, unwieldy, overflowing book—in this particular moment, there is a need for excess to respond to excess; to the smug American Horror Story of overblown, overglossed oppression and hatred. As We Want It All’s editors, Andrea Abi-Karam and Kay Gabriel, state, “Our aim in the present collection is therefore both to register and to amplify this tendency” to write against these excesses of power. They identify eight separate “overlapping strategies and concerns” in this anthology, acknowledging they are far from comprehensive, among them explorations of the ecological and the historical, collaborative exchanges and serial poems, satire and lyricism.

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Marissa Holmes
The Political Vision of David Graeber

Throughout his life, David Graeber remained an eternal optimist who refused to accept the world as it is, and saw only what it could be. He envisioned international, directly democratic, and egalitarian politics. To achieve this required practice.

An Hypothesis

In Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology, Graeber made an hypothesis: majoritarian democracy was in its origins essentially a military institution, a coercive political process in which the minority was compelled by force to do as the majority wanted. Often the “majority,” as in the case of Ancient Athens, was comprised only of white property-owning men. A real democracy could be found in non-Western examples, where people made decisions based on consent rather than coercion. He wrote, “If there is no way to compel those who find a majority decision distasteful to go along with it, then the last thing one would want to do is to hold a vote: a public contest which someone will be seen to lose.” Thus, in communities where the mechanism of coercion, most commonly the state, was absent, there was no reason to engage in a majoritarian process. Instead, he claimed, they operated by not only a formal consensus decision-making process, but a culture of consensus.

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Peter Werbe
Chris Clark

A Speed bump in the road? “We are always facing Armageddon”

The following interview with Chris Clark, editor of the Earth Island Journal, publication of Earth Island Institute, was taped the week of January 18. I chose Clark to interview since he and his organization seem sensible in their theoretical and activist approach to defense of the environment. This may appear as an endorsement to some and a condemnation to others.

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Kyle Holbrock
The Year 2000 for Revolutionaries Destroy Market Capitalism In Six Easy Steps (or Catastrophe?)

The present society produces an ever-increasing series of disasters, from stock market crashes to mass starvation. Most of this chaos winds up hurting the most dispossessed while the capitalists laugh all the way to the bank. Knowing this, as a revolutionary and professional programmer, I want to outline why the Man will get hit worse than he is anticipating by the particular crisis known as the Year 2000 or Y2K problem.

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Peter Werbe
Y2K: Will it all fall apart?

Previous to this era, opponents of capitalism, particularly marxists, but also anarchists, saw the internal contradictions inherent in the political economy as the basis of the system’s overthrow; the working class was to be the agency of revolution. Other marxist theorists postulated that resistance to imperialist domination and colonial oppression, or a revolutionary peasantry, could carry out this task.

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Jess Flarity
Diamond Dogs

a review of

Isle of Dogs by Jon Frankel. Whiskey Tit 2020

Every time Jon Frankel releases a novel it feels as if he’s managed to twist the English language into a new, illusory shape: a mobius strip made of words. Specimen Tank, his debut in 1994, is a lurid nightmarescape with one foot in the grimiest alley of 1980’s New York City and the other in the bizarro universe it took David Wong and all those Eraserhead Press writers another twenty years to finally tap into. If you strip down his latest book from Whiskey Tit, Isle of Dogs, it appears to resemble a political thriller—but it takes place in the year 2500 and all the politicians are multi-generational clones who ride flesh-eating horses around a war-torn, biopunk, feudalist-dystopian version of crumbling America. It’s like sitting down to watch a familiar courtroom drama and discovering your couch is releasing hallucinogenic spores while Netflix beams into your tv from two dimensions away. A word of warning: if you don’t first read Gaha: Babes of the Abyss (the sequel), you may ricochet off this book’s first chapter like a bullet shot into a centrifuge. Frankel must have snorted some Gene Wolfe recently, because he throws his reader directly into the center of the Sargon 4’s political web without wasting a single page on backstory, making it feel like a contemporary novel about life on Capitol Hill except now all the congress members have been replaced by techno-Spartans with delicate, epicurean palates. In a single scene, a couple of two-hundred year old clones might casually discuss mass genocide while drinking jasmine tea and referencing the latest issue of The New York Times, and Frankel continually mixes the familiarity of our modern day with his surreal vision of the future to keep the prose highly readable, yet somehow...askew. His style is a fusion of literary realism and highly imaginative science fiction that harkens back to works such as Philip K. Dick’s Martian Time-Slip, Samuel Delaney’s Trouble on Triton, and Ursula Le Guin’s The Lathe of Heaven. But compared to his other novels, such as The Man Who Can’t Die, Frankel has pumped the brakes on his graphic depictions of sexuality and violence, to the relief of some his readers and to the disappointment of others. This is possibly because Isle of Dogs is told from the perspective of the tyrannical Rulers rather than from their “genetically inferior” victims, and so the story has a familial warmth as the plot passes from character to character, almost as if the reader is peeking behind the curtains of the powerful kings or queens more typical of a high fantasy setting. Again, it’s difficult to pin a single genre on this or any of Frankel’s other works, but for the kind of reader who longs for a story that doesn’t have the slapped-together feel of too much of today’s popular fiction or the overwrought stylism of the literary novels hemorrhaging from Brooklyn’s coffee shops, this book will activate a part of your mind that you didn’t know was there before.

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David Bacon
A Belgrade Ecologist Cries Out for Peace

< [[https://www.fifthestate.org/archive/353-summer-1999/kosovo-the-empire-at-war/][<strong>Kosovo: The Empire at War</strong>]]

NATO bombs rained down on her city, beginning in its suburbs and then moving into the heart of Belgrade. First the planes and cruise missiles came just at night. But then their aerial assault seemed to know no set time of day.

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Cynthia Cockburn
Being able to say neither/nor A letter about some of the complexities of opposition

< [[https://www.fifthestate.org/archive/353-summer-1999/kosovo-the-empire-at-war/][<strong>Kosovo: The Empire at War</strong>]]

Women in Black is against the whole continuum of violence, from male violence against women, to militarism and war. It is for justice and peace. It is for multi-ethnic democracy. It is for nonviolent, negotiated, means of resolving differences. There is an implicit analysis that a certain kind of masculinity fuels and is fueled by militarism and war, and that this is harmful not only for women, but also for men.

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Norman Solomon
If a Cluster Bomb could Talk

< [[https://www.fifthestate.org/archive/353-summer-1999/kosovo-the-empire-at-war/][<strong>Kosovo: The Empire at War</strong>]]

Hi! My name is CBU-871B, but let’s not be formal. A lot of my friends call me Cluster Bomb. I’ve been busy lately, doing what I’m supposed to. And, I sure appreciate the careful treatment that I receive from the American news media.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Kosovo: The Empire at War

The articles on Kosovo were written in early April. The death rates from Serbian ethnic cleansing increase daily.

The articles have been edited for length; full text of the Chomsky and Cockburn pieces are available at www.zmag.org, a web site which contains many useful observations about the war in the Balkans.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Masthead

The Fifth Estate is a cooperative, nonprofit publishing since 1965. The people who produce it are a group of friends who do so neither to secure wages nor as an investment in the newspaper industry, but to encourage resistance to an unjust and destructive society.

The Fifth Estate (ISSN No. 0015–0800) is published quarterly at 4632 Second Ave., Detroit, Michigan 48201 USA;

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Alon K. Raab
Nike Moon On the commercialization of everything

Harvest moon. Moon of the spirits. Cactus moon. Grandmother moon. Nike moon.

Nike moon??

To the many faces and many names honoring the moon, a corporate imprint may soon be added, if a new advertising idea materializes.

Two London-based ad executives, Malcolm Green and Gary Betts, announced plans last year to turn the moon into a giant billboard. By using reflected sunlight from two large umbrella shaped mirrors, they propose projecting corporate logos onto the surface of the moon. They claim to have the assurance of NASA scientists that the plan is feasible.

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Noam Chomsky
The Current Bombing

< [[https://www.fifthestate.org/archive/353-summer-1999/kosovo-the-empire-at-war/][<strong>Kosovo: The Empire at War</strong>]]

The United Nations Charter bans force violating state sovereignty; the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UD) guarantees the rights of individuals against oppressive states. The issue of “humanitarian intervention” arises from this tension. It is the right of “humanitarian intervention” that is claimed by the US/NATO in Kosovo, and that is generally supported by editorial opinion and news reports.

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Jim Feast
Reticent Verse

A review of

Digigram by Barbara Henning. United Artists Books 2020

Many poets have used broad strokes to deplore the current reactionary environment (as Eliot Katz does so superbly in President Predator), expressing their outrage, disgust and sadness, but Barbara Henning in Digigram takes a different route, examining how the coarsened political climate has insinuated itself into all the interstices of everyday life.

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Corrine Manning
The Other Mother

A review of

The Great Offshore Grounds by Vanessa Vaselka. Knopf Penguin/Random House (Bertelsmann) 2020

In Steinbeck’s East of Eden, an indecent woman comes gives birth to a set of twins: one cheats poor farmers to make back money for his father, one drops out of college and is eventually killed in World War I. Before all that can happen the sociopathic mother tells the cheating son that they are just alike but he refuses to believe it. He brings his altruistic brother to meet her and the shame he inflicts upon her is the end of her life. These characters are a mix of settlers: early colonial era, as well as recent Irish and Chinese immigrants. Of these settlers, only one set achieves whiteness in America. All benefit from stolen land. All think they have a choice like Cain and Abel. They can choose righteousness or they can choose sin. This is supposed to be freedom; that they can undo generational harm.

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Fifth Estate Collective
Detroit Seen

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It’s a pleasure to launch our Summer 1999 edition with a rare splash of color on our front page and center section. The other art and photos also provide an excellent setting for a diverse set of articles.

There are probably more people contributing to this issue than we’ve had in a long while. We haven’t had a color front page in six years, but Stephen Good-fellow’s terrific art and the page one photos made it almost a necessity.

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John Zerzan
Brenton Gicker

Anarchy in Eugene A Sleepy College Town Explodes

The “Whiteaker” is Eugene, Oregon’s oldest and poorest neighborhood. Over the past few years some significant anarchy-type situations have developed in Eugene, especially in Whiteaker.

Icky’s Tea House, open from 1994 to 1997, was an anti-institution institution, a haven for the dispossessed and disaffected. Everything at Icky’s was mainly free, including a library, video night, food for the homeless, and bike repair.

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David Solnit
May Day in San Francisco

“Alone we cannot change the terms of this rotten deal, but together anything is possible. Undo the leash of time and money. Take back your lives. We have the right, and we have the ability to make life worth living, to make our lives what we want them to be, not what the absurd logic of private property and wage labor says they must be.”

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Carrie Laben
Freedom in the Marshes

A review of

The Beast and Other Tales by Jóusè d’Arbaud, translated by Joyce Zonana. Northwestern University Press 2020

“I was happy on this barren land that barely provides what I need to sustain this ancient body, but which grants me the wild wind I cannot live without…”

These are the words of The Beast of Vacares, the title character of the title story in Jóusè d’Arbaud’s powerful collection. First published in Provençal in 1926 and long treasured in its native land, the book has only now been translated into English. For many American readers it will be their first glimpse of a landscape, way of life, and language that were under threat even at the time this book was written, founded on the freedom of open spaces and solitude.

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Isabel Gomez
Thousands Rally to Stop Mumia’s Execution April 24 in Philadelphia, San Francisco and Around the World

On April 24, the 45th birthday of death row political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal, approximately 20,000 people gathered in Philadelphia and other cities, to demand a new trial for the former Black Panther and revolutionary journalist known as the “Voice of the Voiceless.”

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One of the many colorful, giant puppets which marched in Philadelphia April 24. Judge Albert Sabo is the hanging judge who sentenced Mumia to death in 1982 and then denied his appeal in 1995. photo/Julie Herrada

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Stacy Flynn
Bullet Points two reviews

Big Girl by Meg Elison. PM Press 2020

The body is the locus of authoritarian control in Meg Elison’s Big Girl (number twenty-five in PM Press’s Outspoken Authors series.) Gorgeously surreal, the collection includes speculative short stories, essays and an interview with Elison by Terri Bisson.

Elison, whose debut novel Book of the Unnamed Midwife won a Phillip K Dick Award in 2014, has a stunning emotional range. Her work can be prosaic, comic, rageful, grotesque and full of sorrow, all within the same piece, sometimes within the same sentence. The title story recounts, through news reports, the journey of a sixteen-year old girl who grows to enormous proportions. She wakes one morning with birds roosting on her eyelashes, she slogs through the San Francisco bay, she flicks away men who climb her, and she comes to occupy her own island like a B-movie monster.

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David Watson
Khafji—February 1991 poem

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Collage by Freddie Baer

“It’s rubble now.”

—General Henry H. Shelton, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, surveying damage from U.S. missile attacks on Iraq, December 17, 1998.

You were once a place before maps were drawn

and what became of you was named, a single morning

inhabited by winds off blue water—and perhaps

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Fifth Estate Collective
On Gogol Boulevard Short version

Numerous problems prevented a full version of our feature, On Gogol Boulevard, from appearing in this issue. Look for its return. In the meantime, important events continue to be played out in Ex-Eastern Bloc countries and the Third World. Contact OGB at 528 Fifth St., Brooklyn NY 11215 or on the web at flag.blackened.net/agony for updates. Items prepared by the Fifth Estate staff.

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