Peacefile is pleased to publish below more entries in Evan Pritchard’s Peace Diary. Readers may toggle between the works of Pritchard and Moses via the categories menu at the right nav menu.
Wednesday,June 30th, 2004: This will be the last day of the June 2004 [Peacefile Diary]. I am very happy with the way things have turned out this month. It was an incredible month in American history and I was pleased to live it, breathe it, laugh at it, survive it! I am mailing off the new Robert Jay text for final proofreading, and going to give a class tonight at the Open Center, the fourth in a series. It is called Madnaq, the Way of the Ethical Warrior, and really looking forward to it. A truly fine group of people, who have really come to learn and absorb and participate. It is one of the best classes ever, and they bring a lot to the table too. NY Spirit is tape recording the entire series, and will give me copies sooner or later. I may decide to transcribe the entire set (8 hours!) and post it here at peacefile.org. William Meyers and Leslie at NY Spirit are Buddhists and very dedicated to promoting these semi-forgotten tools of real peacemaking, so I know they will come through. Then July starts off with a spot on the radio in the morning, and then meetings during the day.
Tuesday, June 29th, 2004: A day with some rest, relatively speaking. I wrote an article on the Canadian election after a follow up conversation with a Canadian friend, explaining it all to me, but the email server was down except for old incoming mail, so I couldn’t email it out. Tiokasin Ghosthorse (announcer on WBAI, First Voices) and I both sent voice mail messages at the same time saying the same thing, let’s get together on Thursday for First Voices. The next box of Native New Yorkers/No Word For Time came, and I unloaded it. A pleasant day to be outside today, but a little muggy. I went and made tobacco prayers by the waterfall. I bought some more tobacco and found some kinick kinick in my sacks. I read my emails, and talked to “Alice” about politics for two hours. She is one of the most politically connected people I have met. S.W. knew we would have a lot to say. When she was young, her mother had said “We’re not sheep, we’re fox!” Apparently there are armed guards here and there around New York City already, even though the Republican convention is many weeks away. I am doing my best to clean up clutter around here in quiet little Saugerties.
During the course of this month, I have been using my diary to make a study of what I call connectivity, the ability of a person to place themselves in a position to observe and benefit from synchronicity and serendipity. I did a similar experiment while keeping a diary in 1974, and just as now, I found that the diary somehow greatly increased the frequency of these synchronicities. I don’t know why that is true, but it is based on repeated evidence. Apparently, the subconscious mind is the ruler of coincidence, and if the subconscious mind knows that a diary will record these events, they happen, even if there is no way to consciously make these coincidences of timing happen. What is more interesting is that last month I was beset by a morass of bad timing, and starting the diary seemed to reverse it. Now there is more synchronicity than I can keep track of. I believe that there is also some skill involved, in that we must keep ourselves uncommitted to preconceived plans in order to be able to follow subtle hints and leads that fear and the pressure of obligation can obliterate from our minds. This month has provided ideal conditions for this to happen. Tonight for example, I didn’t turn on the radio to check in on the Mets until about 8:30. I turned on the radio and it was 2 to 1 Mets with a man on second for the Mets. Immediately Piazza was walked, and then Floyd hit a three run homer, followed by a single and then a home run by Ty Wigginton, to put the Mets ahead 7 to 1. There had only been one hit in the previous five innings, and in a few seconds I had heard five men reach base consecutively, and five RBIs. I turned off the radio. The Mets only got seven hits in the game and seven runs, winning 7 to 5. It was Cliff Floyd’s second homer of the day—interesting because he nearly missed the game. He had been stuck in NY this morning because Dick Cheney was in New York, and all air space was closed, so Floyd almost missed the game in Cincinnati. Cheney hates the Mets, which is one more reason to like them. Cheney was in NY to see a Yankee game, and his presence caused the Mets clean-up hitter to be stuck in an airport almost until game time!
Also, while listening I was reading the Times and there was an article about Pre-Clovis discoveries which tie in with the documentary that Ted is making, and with our work together. Most importantly, the article does not acknowledge any of the recent findings (by Ted’s people) in Maryland, bringing Clovis culture several thousand more years into the past. I called Ted and told him to write in, maybe get an article published that would establish documentation for his discoveries. That’s a kind of synchronicity that is much needed if we expect to affect change in this backwards society. I thought of Tina Kelley at the Times, a great young talent, who manages babies in one arm and world affairs in the other, probably under 30, I’d guess. She really likes reporting gnarly Native American issues.
I worked until 2 AM on finishing the editing and typesetting for Robert Jay’s third book, The Awakening. It is a philosophical work that he feels very strongly about. His first two books Andar’s Message: Consciousness, the Magic Lantern of Life, and Andar’s Message, Consciousness, the Key to Freedom (and the Only Reality) are spiritual-political fiction, a new genre to say the least, and they have made real inroads in terms of addressing conspiracy issues dating back before 9-11. I edited and consulted on those books, and they have a touch of humor but are rather outspoken, more relevant than ever. But his new work focuses on pure consciousness and the multiplicity of inner realties. In this book he finds the roots of conspiracy in the individual’s propensity for self-delusion. He roots out the causes of this self-delusion in materialism and ego-clinging. I hope to post the complete text of the two earlier Andar books at Peace File dot org in the near future, and possibly make the hard copies available through mail order. (Resonance, PO box 1028 Woodstock NY 12498) The author is Robert Jay, Awareness Publications, PO Box 8, Clio Alabama, 36017.
Robert, who is in his 70s, is a farmer/contractor from Eastern Shore Maryland who is probably part Nanticoke (based on photos by Speck of Nanticokes in the region circa 1900) and who has been speaking in public on common sense and spirituality since at least 1969. I first heard him speak in 1974 and it changed my life! By the way, the constitutionality statements from several past Supreme Court Justices included in my email to Jason West (which Justice Katz apparently checked out and based his decision on, paving the way for gay marriages in NY state) were all from Andar’s Message II: Consciousness the Key To Freedom! I confess!!! Sorry Jason! I plagiarized! Forgive me!
Monday, June 28th, 2004: I listened to Amy Goodman’s Democracy Now show at 9:00 which I can only listen to while in the city, so it is a big treat. I took notes as usual, and it was a special morning what with the surprise turnover of Iraq two days ahead of time, and so forth. It was another historic occasion. She was broadcasting from Kansas City, a swing state associated with John Ashcroft, and the sound kept disconnecting. My man Errol, kept coming on to fill the long gaps, his deep, mellifluous voice filling in the break like a barry sax solo, returning by popular demand every so often for an encore.
According to Errol, WBAI, at 99.5 FM is the “peace and justice radio station,” and I say that [Peacefile] is the “peace and justice weblog.” Some of the announcements: UN weapons inspector said that Israel had nuclear weapons but has never admitted to this. 40,000 protested Bush in Turkey yesterday, at NATO conference. There were 10,000 protesting Bush in Ireland, at Shannon Airport in Dublin, where Bush stopped off. Amy G. reported there were over 700 secret service men accompanying Bush, with over 4,000 police. Facing such overwhelming odds, the protesters resourcefully blocked the press corps from reaching Bush for over a half hour, delaying his progress, as they knew he would not leave without a photo op! There were some of the most creative protests yet, including a witch casting a spell to drive Bush from Ireland and a remake of MacBeth, (Mc Bush?) involving a mass march from a historical site associated with MacBeth to the airport. There was also a lengthy public reading of all the names of all the allied dead.
It was also announced that NYC will close off two dozen city blocks surrounding the Convention Center, so that protestors will be kept away. No permits have been approved, which means that any who protest may be subject to the Patriot Act and treated as terrorists. We’ll see about that. She mentioned the Green Party did not nominate Ralph Nader, a big break for Kerry. There are 138,000 Allied troops in Iraq at this time, and that number will go up, not down, as the war atmosphere continues. In fact, there is talk of sending 25,000 more troops in to mop up. The U.S. has created the world’s largest embassy in Baghdad, by the way, and it still controls the oil fields.
There was a secret ceremony in Baghdad about 10:26 AM Iraqi time, 2:26 our time, inaugurating the un-elected government of Iraq. Iata Illawi (spelling mine) has ties to the CIA, to the Saudis, to Iraqi intelligence under Saddam, and also is Shiite, (Coburn called him a “CIA stooge”) however it was noted that he is hated by less people than the other possible appointees. U.S. officials are exempt from the new laws, basically written by the U.S. The heads of cabinets were chosen by U.S. advisors and will stay in at least five years. There is a seven member U.S. appointed commission which can disqualify any parties or candidates they don’t like, rendering any real democracy impossible.
There was talk of a book Full Spectrum Dominance which she found relevant. The most interesting tidbit was a story of Alani Huett Vaughn who served a three year sentence for dissenting as an officer at Fort Leavenworth under a man named Lay Kotter. This man had gotten into trouble on several occasions for his unconstitutional manner of dealing with prisoners, and was sent from one base to another, ending up as a private contractor. Finally he was recommended by John Ashcroft, an old friend from Missouri days, to head up things at Abu Greib. And funny how the investigation only looked at Rumsfeld and found no direct link!
Then I walked around the city a bit, and had a hot dog at an underground hotdog stand called….appropriately enough…The Underdog. I always favor the underdog, so I had to have one. It was on Bleeker Street.
On the way home, I had four pieces of luggage, one of which was a bull horn. As I was running to the Metro North train with two minutes to go, the siren went off twice. It’s a flaw in the design; the switch for the loud siren slides too easily to ON. A Medic was behind me and he started running like mad, apparently thinking it was 9-11 all over again. He was gone before I could catch up lugging my four pieces of luggage (all of which I used in my various presentations, so no “excess baggage:” armchair shrinkos, okay?). I jogged the rest of the way the train holding the bull horn up in the air to avoid this happening again, but that was also the hand holding the suitcase, so it was a real strain! I made the train by seconds, but had to walk through the filled train to find my seat. People had their four pieces of luggage all over the empty seats so I couldn’t sit down and lay out my four pieces of luggage. New York is nothing if not territorial. I rested and wrote notes for future essays.
Upon exiting in Cold Spring, I called the computer guys, my team, and they said they’d be open til 6 PM, giving me just enough time to pick up my computer there. I did not dawdle, and made it under the wire, with seconds to spare (actually minutes). Then I did some errands, and shopped for salad food (chipmunks gotta eat too) . As I drove by The Inquiring Mind bookstore, I saw a screen hanging down and the picture of someone’s face on it. Somehow, I knew that this was something important, a hunch, so I went with it. I drove completely around the larger block and parked as close as I could. It was a Democratic Party meeting, and there was an air of disorganization in the room. Apparently I was an hour early, but information was not easily forthcoming. What I gathered was that in one hour Michael Moore would be addressing the group via MoveOn.org’s website, talking about his movie. They were going to have a discussion. Had I seen it? “Of course!” I said. “Its great, its funny, its moving… what is there to discuss? See it!”
I went home, unpacked, made a call to Canada to see how the elections were going, prepared my laundry, ate dinner, and then sped back and arrived at Inquiring Mind by 8 PM. People were doing a sort of “talking feather” discussion, saying what they liked about the movie, or why they were there. One woman recommended we all read “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.” A woman from FAIR was there, who had just written an article on the voting machine problem. Findley and Nancy were there from the Methodists and gave me a warm greeting when they arrived, as did Gary S. and others. The August 14th Democratic picnic was announced; Michael Moore’s film will move to 2000 theaters next week.
We saw our white spot on the great map of North America, all the people plugged into the MoveOn site at that moment. We sent the message, 70 people in Saugerties. It was one of the larger gatherings nationwide, with a total of 26,037 people linked at once into the site. It was apparently the greatest number of people ever linked to one interactive site of this nature at one time; I was a witness to history. Then, after prolonged moments of great expectation, and a few more moments listening to the nerdy voice of the narrator, probably the only one who understood the esoteric programming involved, the voice of Michael Moore came on over the PA, and told us about the reactions to his film; how many who saw it quit the Republican party the same day. One man in San Francisco threw his shoe at the movie screen while Bush was on camera. When asked about Kerry, he said that “being a weak-kneed, wimpy Democrat is a sure way to lose the election.” He said that 62% of the electorate is female, black or Hispanic, and would support a more progressive approach, although he also said, “Kerry would never invade a country.” He also mentioned what Amy G had said: The Green Party had refused to nominate Nader even though he had 6% of the national vote. They nominated someone you never heard of instead. MoveOn now has 2.25 million participants. Someone said that with $26 million in ticket sales, Moore must be on the top of Carl Rove’s list. Someone said he has bodyguards, but that may be rumor. The sound link went silent on two or three occasions, and we believed one visual portion was lost. Not surprising, for a first time event, and not that distracting.
The people in the room cheered at all the appropriate moments, (but not so long as to drown out the information) making this Turn Up The Heat evening a fun event for all. Everyone loved it when Moore kept saying, “people are coming out of the theater saying “Why didn’t I see that on the news?”
Moore encouraged us to take off work November 2nd, and vote and then travel to swing states and work at the polls with our families.
I went home after some networking, and talked to my Canadian contacts, asking lots of questions. As it turns out the French name for the herb “Gold Thread,” Savoyane, is derived from the Micmac word “Tisawayenne.” I had been saying all along that Gold Thread was especially prized by the Micmac, and I was right.
The Canadian election was nothing short of a miracle. I had been praying about it all day, on and off. The right-wing conservative Stephen Harper had been leading by two points all week. Moore’s movie hit the Canadian theaters on Friday (earlier in Montreal) and Harper started to speak off-script, saying some insensitive things about minority groups, and there was a 9% flip back to the liberals in the last two days. Pretty amazing! According to one poll, Bush’s support had dipped to 42% before the handover of the Iraqi government, its lowest point, but Kerry had only 41%. That was before the release of the movie and before Nader lost the Green Party nomination.
Here is my article, drafted this night then completed the following morning … [note: article posted at the main page of peacefile.org]