Cultural Dissent

GLW Issue 1063


Anti-government protests in Bahrain, 2011.

Sectarian Gulf: Bahrain, Saudi Arabia & the Arab Spring That Wasn’t
Toby Matthiesen
Stanford University Press, 2013

In 2011, when a wave of protest and rebellion swept the Arab world, the monarchical states making up the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) were not exempt from the unrest.

Australia, the “sporting nation”, has a problem. The idea of Australia as the “fair-go” country must be laid to rest as a myth.

Australia is a racist nation that has shown that it will never tolerate an Aboriginal person “getting above themselves”. The Adam Goodes saga — in which the Sydney Swans superstar has faced repeated booing from AFL crowds ever since he performed a traditional Indigenous war dance to celebrate a goal during the AFL's Indigenous round in May — has laid bare the racism for all to see.

GLW Issue 1062

Here's this month's radical record round-up, with an emphasis on Guantanamo Bay. What album, or albums, would you suggest? Comment below, on Twitter or Facebook.

1. VARIOUS ARTISTS - NINA REVISITED

Battlers & Billionaires: The Story of Inequality in Australia
Andrew Leigh
Black Inc. Books, 2013
210 pages, $19.99 (pb)

In Australia, notes economist and Labor MP Andrew Leigh, the poorest 20% of the population own just 1% of total household wealth. The top 20%, however, hog a fat 62%.

What Happened, Miss Simone?
Directed by Liz Garbus
Distributed by Netflix

Liz Garbus' beautifully composed and riveting documentary What Happened, Miss Simone? honours the African American musician and civil rights activist who came to be known as “The High Priestess of Soul”.

In the aftermath of Cold Chisel frontman Jimmy Barnes' Facebook statement asking the far-right Reclaim Australia movement to stop playing his songs at their rallies, other musicians whose songs have featured have issued similar calls.

Singer Jimmy Barnes, best known as frontman for iconic Australian pub rock band Cold Chisel, released a statement slamming the far-right Reclaim Australia movement for using his songs at their rallies.

In a statement on his official Facebook page, Barnes said: “It has come to my attention that certain groups of people have been using my voice, my songs as their anthems at rallies.

GLW Issue 1061


Serena Williams has won 21 Grand Slam titles — the same number every other active women’s player has collected combined.

There are many articles — terrific articles — defending Serena Williams against the racism and sexism that have long stalked her career. But we should be similarly aggressive in stating factually just who Serena is becoming before our very eyes.

Raw Intelligence
Graphic
Released May 26, 2015
$27.99
Buy it on iTunes

Perth rapper Graphic has rewritten the rule books with his new album, Raw Intelligence. The emcee, who reads Green Left Weekly, took the unusual approach of releasing the strong, high-quality album as an interactive ebook containing its mp3s, lyrics and links to further reading. GLW's Mat Ward spoke to him.

***

GLW Issue 1060


Gaelle Enganamouit (right) led her team to a dominating 6-0 victory over Ecuador on June 8.

With the football world still exhaling after a thrilling Women's World Cup, won 5-2 by the USA on July 5, it is worth taking a moment to look back at the tournament.


Newsome arrested after removing Confederate flag from South Carolina courthouse, June 27.

GLW Issue 1059

Float, Float,
Dirty old boat
Dirty old trade
People afloat,
crying,
dying, fish holds of shame.
Wave after wave,
desperate, wretched, people
abandoned,
stranded
by men who profit hope.

Men who politic no hope,
praying to Jesus,
Who spoke,
"Knock and the door shall be opened for you"
Prime Minister, who prays spoke,
Nope nope nope.

Vote, Vote,
Dirty old vote
Dirty old politics
People remote,
receive,
believe, lies full of shame.
Wave after wave,
affluent, feckless people
democracy,
hypocrisy.
Deny the dirty old boat.

Decry the people who float

Command & Control
Eric Schlosser
Allen Lane, 2013
632 pages
A Short History Of Nuclear Folly
Rudolph Herzog
Melville House, 2014
252 pages
Atomic Comics: Cartoonists Confront The Nuclear Age
Ferenc Szasz
University of Nevada Press, 2013
179 pages

Atomic bombs have only been used in warfare twice, but they have nearly been detonated, through accident or mistake, many more times, writes Eric Schlosser in his book on nuclear weapons mishaps, Command and Control.

Bolivian President Evo Morales inaugurated a new football (soccer) stadium on June 24 in the central department of Cochabamba, naming the new athletic facility after the late Venezuelan revolutionary leader and president, Hugo Chavez.

During his inauguration speech, Morales highlighted Chavez's legacy, saying: “He was a leader who possessed so much solidarity, as a president he taught us not be afraid of those who try to dominate us.”

My son goes to a sprawling public school that provides the majority of players for our local soccer (football) league in Washington DC. He plays on a team of boys and girls where, as is often the case with six-to-eight-year-olds, the girls frequently dominate on the field of play.

In addition, his awesome classroom teacher played soccer at the most legendary women’s collegiate program in the United States.

Argentine football legend Diego Maradona confirmed on June 21 that he will run for FIFA's presidency, according to his friend and former co-host of a TeleSUR football show, Uruguayan journalist Victor Hugo Morales.

“Diego will be candidate for FIFA [presidency], with all the authority he has,” Morales said, who now hosts TeleSUR's De Chilena! show.

After delivering some bad news to presidential candidate Donald Trump to stop rockin’ to his “Rockin' In The Free World” song, it looks like Neil Young has also upset some of his fans over at Monsanto.

In a statement to Billboard, multinational corporation Monsanto is letting it be known that its feelings have been hurt by the rock legend.

The 69-year-old Canadian musician is releasing a new album entitled the Monsanto Years, targeting the chemical giant’s use of genetically modified seeds and pesticides.


Fans at a US college football match.

It is a rare day when we wonder what National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) coaches are saying about racial justice and social change in the United States.

Below Average
The Funkoars
www.thefunkoars.com

Half-way through The Funkoars' set at The Basement in Sydney, the band suddenly announce that they are going to bring a "very special guest" on stage.

Their fans, who were already acting like a bunch of unhinged lunatics, start roaring like they've been freed from the asylum. Who could it be? Perhaps their label mate from Golden Era Records, Aboriginal hip-hop heavyweight Briggs? Maybe their label bosses, Australia's most popular hip-hop act, the Hilltop Hoods?

GLW Issue 1058

Frackman
Directed by Richard Todd
http://frackmanthemovie.com

Frackman is a new documentary that follows the story of self-proclaimed “worst environmental activist ever” Dayne Pratzky, a resident of the Tara Estates, Chinchilla, in Queensland.

Here's this month's radical record round-up, from queer house to riotous ska. What album, or albums, would you suggest? Comment below, on Twitter or Facebook.

1. RUPAUL - REALNESS

GLW Issue 1057


Migrant workers are employed in slave-like conditions on construction of Qatar's World Cup facilities.

The Ugly games: The Qatari Plot to Buy the World Cup
Heidi Blake & Jonathan Calvert
Simon & Schuster, 2015 472 pages

The only surprising thing about the FIFA corruption scandal is that anyone should be surprised, given the long history of credible allegations of bribery in world football’s governing body.


Rammstein.

The racist United Patriot Front (UPF) have used German industrial metal band Rammstein in a new video to promote a racist march on July 17.

The UPF are a splinter group from a Reclaim Australia that seek to harass Muslims and promote Islamophobia and violence.

The video opens with the UPF member declaring “I am not a Nazi”. The UPF video has excluded images from Reclaim Australia rally in April of participants with swastikas.


Author Carla Gorton at the Cairns launch of the book and associated film project. Photo: Jobsforwomenfilm.com.

Women of Steel: Gender, jobs & justice at BHP
Carla Gorton & Pat Brewer
Resistance Books, Sydney
$10 paperback, 73 pages
www.resistancebooks.com

GLW Issue 1056

The corruption scandal that has hit FIFA, culminating in the recent arrest of seven FIFA officials in Switzerland and the resignation of FIFA president Sepp Blatter, has focused attention on the world’s most powerful football (soccer) body.

You have to go back to FIFA's founding to understand the factors that have led to these events. It was formed in 1904 to oversee international competition among various European football associations.


Tom Morello.

A new US-based record label for “rebel music”has been launched by Rage Against Machine guitarist Tom Morello, who also performs as solo act the Night Watchman, Rolling Stone reported on June 4.

Whichway
Lucky Luke
Released March 24, 2015
www.facebook.com/currymurri13

The artwork for Lucky Luke's debut album shows him holding Mount Isa's infamous lead smelter like a didgeridoo. It's as if he's taking it back for his people.

"The photo, as you say, is almost like I am reclaiming the smelter," says the rapper, who is from the Waanyi, Mitakoodi, Ringa Ringa, Kalkadoon and Warumungu tribal groups.

GLW Issue 1055

Independent journalist and author Antony Loewenstein has made a name for himself writing about war crimes, human rights abuses and corporate profiteering.

For the first time, he is seeking to speak truth to power through the medium of film — with his first documentary Disaster Capitalism now in production. You can see a teaser at Loewenstein's website. You can visit http://antonyloewenstein.com for more details on his articles and books.

Freedom Fallacy: The Limits of Liberal Feminism
Edited by Miranda Kiraly & Meagan Tyler
Published by Connor Court, 2015

With Miley Cyrus declaring herself “one of the biggest feminists in the world”, and Beyonce performing at the 2014 MTV Music Awards in front of a huge illuminated sign that read “Feminist”, it would appear that feminism has gone mainstream.

Argentine football legend Diego Maradona welcomed the arrest of six FIFA executives by Swiss police in an interview with the Argentine Radio La Red on May 27.

“Stop these shady businesses, stop lying to people, stop throwing a dinner to re-elect Blatter,” Maradona said, referring to current FIFA head Sepp Blatter, who is seeking re-election. Blatter was not named in the indictment, but his re-election in 2011 is part of the United States-initiated corruption probe.