Post-election Malas: #3 / Sedition

1. The ripple in my pulse just typing the word.

2. That bridge a word crosses sometimes, from abstraction to provoker of physical response.

3.  Like the way someone's face can mean nothing to you & then one afternoon she looks at you & the blood rises in your cheeks.

4.  What does it mean to love your country.

5.  The way the English word 'sedition' contains the Spanish word 'sed,' which means thirst.

6.  But the English roots are from the Indo-European & Latin words for 'to go.'

7.  Wednesday morning I rode my bike up to what I'm now calling the Tower, on what was supposed to be the day of the first press conference of the proposed new administration.

8.  I didn't want to go. I wanted to sleep in & have breakfast in bed listening to Max Roach because Tuesday was his birthday, without thinking about Tuesday night's reports of the proposed new administration watching Russian prostitutes piss in the bed of the current administration

9.  --or about how the report kept making me think of the story of Saddam Hussein buying yellowcake uranium in Niger #YellowJournalism

10.  --& of Colin Powell holding up his vial of anthrax at the UN

11.  --& of Renewed Attacks Against American Destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin

12.  --& of that Tahrir photo from before military rule, of a citizen kissing a helmeted soldier's cheek, in the days when they chanted "The army & the people are one hand."

12a. [ Gigi Ibrahim @Gsquare86: Venting/protesting is important but without a long-term vision will be washed up by the next news cycle. Must build for the future opposition.
Me: Thank you, fighter.
@GSquare86: Been there in a different way and this is what I learned out of experience and history. ]

13.  [ Representative Jose Serrano D-NY on April 2003 Pentagon briefings: “the daily lie” ]

14.  [ Tahrir 2011, Guardian:  "'First we trusted them, and now we don't trust them so much any more,' said Mohamed Ali, 67, who was standing in front of the tanks." ]

15.  [ Psychologist & neuroscientist Stephen Kosslyn: "Deception is a huge, multidimensional space, in which every combination of things matters." ]

16.  [ @max_read : deep state in movies: CIA assassin garrotes the president
deep state IRL: old memo about presidential piss party winds up on buzzfeed ]

17.  Trump's Sean Spicer: "On @Morning_Joe both @washingtonpost & @nytimes note @BuzzFeed reports r based on long time unverified tumors" [ sic ]

18.  --& I didn't want to think about Jeff Sessions R-AL deemed too racist to be a federal judge appearing for his US Attorney General Senate confirmation hearing with his Asian granddaughter in his lap

19. [  Gerald Hebert, Justice Department lawyer: It was in the context of my talking to Jeff about the NAACP that he made some comments about the NAACP and the ACLU.
Reginald Govan: What were the comments?
Mr Hebert: He said he thought they were un-American.
Mr Govan: Did he give a reason for his belief?
Mr Hebert: He said that he thought they did more harm than good when they were trying to force civil rights down the throats of people who were trying to put problems behind them. ]

20. --or about the letter from "decision-makers & public figures from across Europe," including several Advisory Council members of the Munich Security Conference, begging DT not to destroy NATO & to break up with Vladimir Putin

21.  --or about the generations of murderous unpacified ghosts moving through the vacancy of Dylann Roof's face in Charleston South Carolina & the sound of the prosecutor's recommendation for what we should do about this, nine times, one for the unpacified ghost of each of Roof's victims, "the full measure of justice," Death, Death, Death, Death, Death, Death, Death, Death, Death

22.  --or about Barack Obama in his farewell address from Chicago where the Homan Square black site is, where Chicago police shot Laquan McDonald 16 times, where in 2015 12 Bronzeville parents & activists went on a hunger strike to get an open enrollment public neighborhood high school

23. [ @brownblaze on election night 2008: "I was at a Black club called The Loft in St. Louis and I lost it.
Some brotha came up to me with two champagne bottles and was like, 'naw, sis, we won!!'" ]

24.  --talking about "the equal treatment our Founders promised"

25.  [ @brownblaze: "Everyone in that room had been inspired by him. Everyone in that room was let down by him." ]

26.  [ O in 2004, running for Senate: "In the past two years, our nation has lost its way." ]

27.  [ O in March 2009, to Wall Street executives: "My administration is the only thing between you & the pitchforks." ]

28. & making me weep with his compromised integrity inflecting his living face filled with love for his wife & his daughters & his idea of his country

29.  [ 26,171 bombs in 2016 alone ]

30.  [ "That's what I want to focus on tonight: The state of our democracy." ]

31.  & suggesting we cope with the terrifying sentence, "In 10 days, the world will witness a hallmark of our democracy"

32.  [ His response when the people moaned: "No, no, no, no, no." ]

33.   --by grabbing a clipboard.

34.  This was just Tuesday.

35.  'Shock & awe,' aka 'rapid dominance,' as defined by Ullman & Wade of the National Defense University in 1996: "to so overload an adversary's perceptions & understanding of events that the enemy would be incapable of resistance at the tactical & strategic levels."

36.  Ullman & Wade describe it as an attempt to develop a post-Cold War military doctrine for the United States.

37. #6 of Ullman & Wade's 9 examples: "Haitian example: Imposing shock & awe through a show of force & indeed through deception, misinformation, & disinformation."

38.  Outside the Tower were a lot of police barricades standing around not very many people, like clothes hanging on someone sick they don't fit anymore.

39. & I remembered watching Tunisia & Egypt & that shift when there were suddenly so many people in the streets you couldn't see the spaces between them.

40.  There's a little white tent now at 56th & 5th where an elegantly overcoated Black man with an earwire stands with his hands behind his back beside a uniformed white policeman who asks when pedestrians try to cross, "Armani? Gucci?"

41.  If the answer is no you have to cross elsewhere.

56th & 5th

42.  I rode the bike around the block a few times to keep warm, with NO in orange spray paint on the back of my vest, & at one point passed the big inflatable rat that means someone's betraying a union (I heard once that the rat's name is Scabby), & took a flyer from a smiling man whose face looked as though someone had hit him recently.

43.  The flyer said that Shawmut Construction & the Mozar Group were paying substandard wages on a construction project at St. John's University in Queens: "This practice destroys the ability of the good working class men and women of New York to properly provide for themselves as well as their families."

44.  --with phone numbers to call, & a cartoon of 2 ragged men hunched under a litter bearing a rich man & his bags of money, dangling a wad of cash on a fishing line in front of them.

45.  In that New York way that crossing from one block to another can be like moving between worlds, the union protesters & the press conference protesters might as well have been on different planets

46.  & it struck me that I've been beside so many people in street demonstrations over the years & we were almost always looking at someone up front, as if we were at a movie, not looking at each other.

47.  I didn't hear until later the rambling belligerence going on inside the Tower, the devolving of the traditional deferences into the contemporary humiliations, like the moment when the proposed new administration said Quiet, Quiet to silence a journalist & his colleagues continued with the show as if nothing had happened--

47a.  (Rudy Giuliani: "It is refreshing & it is very good for our democracy that we have a president that is trying to get us back to a free press.")

47b. (Turkey's Erdogan: "Mr. Trump put the reporter of that group in his place there.")

47c.  (Number of journalists Erdogan has jailed since July: 144. Number of media companies taken over or closed: 150.)

48.  --because I was across the barricaded street with the 20-or-so anti-fascism protesters, one of whom was an old man with a big sign that said Trump Is a Fagot [sic] Sucks Putin Cock, & another a woman in a devil costume with ruffs of money & a sign that said The Road To Hell Is Paved With Billionaires.

49.  Pacing back & forth was a Black man in a suit with a Trump hat & sign. I'm blacker than Obama, he said to one camera.  I'm a country boy from Alabama.

50.  New York Times: "Just as Mr. Lewis was about to testify, Trump transition team members circulated photographs showing Mr. Sessions and Mr. Lewis marching together over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a confrontation there between civil rights marchers and the police."

51.  At one point a straight white couple with expensive shoes walked up Fifth Avenue with their semi-grown children & smiled at the Alabama man's sign. I'm being real, he said, & the white woman patted his arm without breaking stride & said with a Southern accent, Yes of course you are. Thank you.

52.  Lucille Clifton, "in white america" : "smiling she pats my darky hand."

53.  John Lewis D-GA:  "Those who are committed to equal justice in our society wonder whether Senator Sessions’s call for 'law and order' will mean today what it meant in Alabama, when I was coming up back then."

54.  Senator Tim Kaine D-VA to Rex Tillerson, whose eyes make those of every movie Mephistopheles look innocent: Do you lack the knowledge to answer my question, or do you refuse to answer my question?
RT: A little of both.

55.  The weird relief dappling the horror as it all comes out in the open.

56.  If I'd stayed at the Tower until Thursday I could have seen DT's consigliere Guido George Lombardi in the basement ice cream shop having coffee with French Fascist Marine Le Pen, who's hoping to be elected president of France in May.

57.  How in 2014 a French court ruled that calling Marine Le Pen a Fascist was "fair comment."

58.  How she lost another suit like this vs. the same left opponent to whom she had to pay 10,000 Euros because her National Front party distributed a fake leaflet in his name during a French by-election.

59.  How on Wednesday night Lombardi had a little party for her in his Tower apartment downstairs from DT's: "I can't name names," he told the Corriere della Sera in a phone interview, "there were Israelis, a few UN representatives, people from Wall Street, some Russians & supporters of what I call 'the French Trump.'"

60.  New York Times: "Marine Le Pen's Visit to New York: Trump Tower, Not Trump"

Le Monde:  "Marine Le Pen Goes To Trump Tower, But Without Meeting Its Owner"

Libération: "In New York, The Surprising Travel Companion of Marine Le Pen"

Corriere della Sera: "Lombardi, the Italian Between Trump & Le Pen: 'Trumpism? It was born from us.'"

61.  Lombardi re the Fascist guest list in the middle of Manhattan: "I don't want to be the Italian quaquaraqua."

61a.  quaquaraqua. n. a phonoesthetic term of the Sicilian language, now in common use in Italian. A particularly talkative person, but without actual skills, thus considered unreliable. In Mafia slang, an informer.

62.  How they were sitting in the Tower basement ice cream shop Thursday with National Front VP Louis Aliot & with Pierre Ceyrac, the surprising travel companion, a former National Front minister & a friend of Marine's father Jean-Marie.

63.  Jean-Marie who after a tour as a paratrooper in occupied Indochina left the National Assembly in 1956 to be an intelligence officer in occupied Algeria.

64.  Jean-Marie who tortured Algerians in their casbah homes in the Battle of Algiers.

65.  How he & his men tortured Ahmed Moulay in front of his young wife & 6 children with water & electricity, does this story sound familiar

66.  & left behind him at dawn Ahmed Moulay's dead body & a knife attached to a khaki belt, with his name carved into it, & Ahmed's 12-year-old son Mohamed found it & hid it & presented it later as evidence.

67.  The mixed horror & relief of evidence.

68.  Jean-Marie Le Pen: "I don't have anything to hide. I tortured because it was necessary."

69.  Dylann Roof:  "I felt like I had to do it & I still feel like I had to do it."

70.  How Pierre Ceyrac worked for the Unification Church & helped arrange a photo op between Jean-Marie & Reagan in 1987, so the Fascist candidate could be seen shaking the hand of an American president.

71.  Unification Church Reverend Sun Myung Moon, who did Federal prison time for tax evasion: "The whole world is in my hand, & I will conquer & subjugate the world."

72.  His top aide in 1988: "We are going to make it so that no one can run for office in the United States without our permission."

73.  Christopher Caldwell of The Weekly Standard on Marine Le Pen: "a prettier more eloquent version of her father," "a young woman who will remain popular until an unthinking remark reveals her true program."

74. Marine Le Pen's first word when asked by an Oxford student about the values her father passed on to her: la droiture.  Literally, rightness.

75. US Nazi Richard Spencer (that little pulse ripple again typing it): "I was pleased to see Marine Le Pen at Trump Tower but we all know Marion Le Pen [ Marine's niece ] is the future. She's a star."

75a.  Marion Le Pen: "Imagine a Trump-Marine-Putin axis to fight Islamist terrorism!" #NewYearsWishes

76.  How Lombardi said 'Trumpismo' began in Italy in the 90s with founder of the Northern League party Umberto Bossi, who's now accused of funneling millions of euros of public money into private accounts.

77.  How a wander through Lombardi's Twitter feed leads to a Christmas card from Dutch Fascist Geert Wilders, with a pasted picture of him & Marine & DT & Nigel Farage & another man I don't recognize, Merry Christmas, Let's Make The World Great Again.

78.  How a wander through Pierre Ceyrac's Twitter feed leads to Action Française.

79.  That moment in the ever-useful The Sorrow & the Pity, when someone says he wasn't a fascist, he was a royalist.

80.  What the Action Française calls the Republic: la gueuse. The slut.

81.  Action Française tweet I'd copied: There is still a King who still reigns a little in the French unconscious

82.  Action Française tweet I saw just now, which provoked that little involuntary sound the woman who filmed the Hillary bitches man on the Delta flight made: Fuck your democracy

83.  How Lombardi said Marine Le Pen was going to Washington on Friday, because there were several members of Congress who would like to meet her.

84.  A long time ago I had two ancestors who served in Congress, my fourth great-grandfather Henry Shaw & his father Samuel, from Massachusetts & Vermont respectively. Shaw is my middle name.

85.  After the French Revolution Dr Samuel Shaw (ashé) wrote some admiring Republican things in Vermont newspapers & John Adams put him in prison for sedition.

86.  There's no record of the trial, but we know that of all those imprisoned under the Sedition Act, he was the only one acquitted

87.  & then went on to serve two terms in Congress & a tour as a surgeon in the War of 1812.

88.  How when I forget that sedition & loving one's country may be synonymous, he reminds me.

89.  How sedition may threaten a republic, & how a republic may perish for lack of it.

90. How the neoliberals used Jean-Marie Le Pen in 1992 to tell people if you didn't vote for Maastricht & the Euro you were voting for fascism.

91.  Are these the only choices.

92.  Like the choice between neoliberal coup or fascist takeover now.

93.  dear Barbara Lee D-CA thank you for adding this to Thursday's whirlwind: "On Inauguration Day, I will not be celebrating. I will be organizing and preparing for resistance."

94.  dear John Lewis D-GA thank you for adding this to Friday's : "I don't see this President-elect as a legitimate president."

95.  Did Marine Le Pen meet Steve King R-IA who was trotting out his model border wall this week: "Our little construction company could build a mile of this a day pretty easily."

"I also say we need to do a few other things on top of that wall. And one of them would be to put a little bit of wire on top here to provide a disincentive for people to climb over the top or put a ladder there. We could also electrify this wire, with a kind of current that wouldn't kill somebody but it would simply be a discouragement for them to be fooling around with it. We do that with livestock all the time."

95a. Steve King's tweet November 9: a photo of DT & Marine Le Pen. "Trump victory echoes around the globe. Freedom loving people are inspired everywhere. Trump victory is Brexit 2.0."

95b. November 10: "Trump victory is 4 the middle class, our Constitution & for Western Civilization. Brexit & now we r Americans again!"

95c. November 30: "Stopped by today at office of Ileana @RosLehtinen of FL to have a cup of Cuban coffee & celebrate the biological solution of 1 less Castro."

95d. December 2, with a photo of 6 seated men: "5 Egyptian Generals discuss restoring our security & diplomatic relationship which was destroyed by Obama's support for Muslim Brotherhood."

95e. December 5, with a smiling handshake photo: "Regrets to @norbertghofer for 2nd place finish in race for President of Austria. The cause of freedom & our friendship remain. Onward!"

95f.  December 19: "Geert Wilders, MP of NL is Politician of the Year again! Chosen in spite of antiFreedom persecution & abuse of law."

96.  September 26, retweeting a constituent: "This is open white nationalism. King embarrasses my home state and its tradition of decency. May his grandchildren be brown and educated"--beside smiling handshake photo w Geert Wilders & King's own words: "Wishing you successful vote. Cultural suicide by demographic transformation must end."

97.  dear Martin, Happy birthday. So many people on the steps of the public library today for the PEN Writers Resist gathering you couldn't see the spaces between us.

98.  Tweet from the City of Biloxi Mississippi: "Non-emergency municipal offices in Biloxi will be closed on Monday in observance of Great Americans Day."

99.  dear white woman with white hair on the library steps, with a sign that said UNGOVERNABLE ANTI-FASCIST: I'm with you.

100.  The sign's image of a shirt & suit-jacket cuff & a Black man's fist.

101.  Barack Obama: "Our founders argued. They quarreled. Eventually they compromised. They expected us to do the same."

102.  Or has the cup of the founders' compromises become this flood.  Is the time for compromise on the Who is a full human being? question done, finally, yesterday, now.

103.  How Jackie Woodson stood on the library steps in the cold & read Claude McKay's "If We Must Die."

104.  John Lewis at 23, in Washington, August 1963, the only one still alive of those who spoke that day: "I appeal to all of you to get into this great revolution that is sweeping this nation. Get in & stay in the streets of every city, every village & hamlet of this nation until true freedom comes, until the revolution of 1776 is complete. We must get in this revolution & complete the revolution."

105.  El País as I was standing on the steps, with that green frog cartoon: "The US white supremacist right adopted this meme in 2015. Then the Russian Embassy used it on Twitter."

106. How we marched up 5th Avenue to the Tower yelling Resist!, & when a young white man yelled from a car Get a job!, a young Black man carrying a banner yelled back, It's Sunday, bitch!

107.  How Savion Glover at the Blue Note tonight crushed the atoms of current reality under the hundred surfaces of his feet & remade & redistributed them, wearing a yellow-tasseled string of mala beads.

107a.  Maybe yellow because whoever else's son he is, he's a son of Oshún, who protects the rivers & smears the hard man's mouth with honey & turns destruction to love.

Savion Glover

Savion Glover

108.  MLK, what will be 50 years ago this spring:  "We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now."

See you in Washington.

will you punish me for history
he said

what will you undertake
she said

Adrienne Rich
"From an Old House in America"

• • •