Here we sit on the cusp of a three-day weekend and just as many of us get ready to take a much-needed breather, the United States reveals that it plans to heap upon Julian Assange 17 Espionage Act-related charges that could see him jailed for 175 years, and potentially even executed. All of this hinges on whether the UK extradites Assange either directly to the U.S. or to the U.S. via one of the empire’s vassal states, Sweden.
It’s been observed by many in the last day and by a conscientious few many months and years before these latest developments, that the extradition of Assange under the Espionage Act (a near unconstitutional piece of legislation pushed through by Woodrow Wilson to, in part, drag resistant Americans into WWI) would set a precedent that would likely make much national security and foreign policy reporting a crime. As Rainer Shea observed in his most recent piece here on Ghion Journal, this type of move is inherently dictatorial.
Several helpful and urgent pieces have been published about this so far. Here are a few I’d recommend:
- From Joe Lauria, editor at Consortium News – https://consortiumnews.com/2019/05/23/assange-indicted-under-espionage-act-on-17-new-counts/
- From Alex Rubinstein at Mint Press News – https://www.mintpressnews.com/amnesty-international-hangs-julian-assange-out-to-dry-or-possibly-just-hang/258780/
- From Ben Norton at The Grayzone – https://thegrayzone.com/2019/05/24/trump-charges-assange-press-freedoms-media-obama/
- From Caitlin Johnstone at everywhere – https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/05/24/professional-assange-smearers-finally-realize-his-fate-is-tied-to-theirs/
Speaking/writing for myself, I plan to take some time to think about all of this more deeply. I’ll return with a piece on the Assange issue next week. In it, I’ll be connecting the essentially illegal detention of Julian Assange with the moral universe of noir detective fiction and the difficulty citizens have in finding moral clarity without looking deep beneath the surface of the reality with which we’re incessantly presented. I appreciate your patience as I work through the ideas. I suck at hot takes, so I leave them to other, swifter writers.
As we head into the long weekend, however, I would like to call your attention to someone I recently discovered, a video-maker and interdisciplinary thinker who looks at issues such as the way neoliberal capitalism structures and damages our emotional lives. Her name is Leslie and she runs a YouTube channel called Mad Blender.
Here’s her most recent video, a genuinely affecting and thought-provoking piece of work called Capitalist Realism, Mental Illness and Societies of Control.
Our lives on this orb are so much more than they appear to be as we go about our mundane daily routines. The simple act of riding the bus to work can reveal important insights about the nature of our economy, our culture and our environment. Our minds are willing to make the connections if only we can pay attention to our surroundings and direct their restless energy.
Everything merges beyond the veil.
I wish you well until next Tuesday, when we’ll return with a new essay from Rainer Shea and, later in the week, articles from myself and the inimitable Caitlin Johnstone.
On a final note, The Ghion Journal is actively looking for new non-partisan cultural and political writers to join our little corner of the Internet. If that’s you or anyone you know, please hit us up on Twitter at @ghionjournal or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As always, thanks for reading.
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