Modern Day “Burgers and Games” by Pamela Anderson

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I think it is

quite a challenge linking up

mental health,

gun control

and video games.

But,

With all these public shootings in the US, pointing out these connections are important,

however controversial, divisive, and uncommon in other countries

with the same access

to virtual violence, sex and

brainless past times.

Personally,

I have never played video games-

I’ve only sat

and reluctantly

watched my boyfriend play -

and only occasionally - it only convinced me more so -

how unattractive it is.

My time on planet Earth has always been too precious to me to waste it on achieving absolutely nothing in a non-existent world full of non-existing problems,

when our real world is so full of real problems that need real people courageous and strong and enough to solve them.

To me, video games are nothing but another drug,

just like alcohol,

pornography

and all this other addictive stuff

(including even political, military and financial power).

If we do not learn to give these things their proper place,

to use them responsibly and with the necessary caution,

moderation and accountability,

it will quickly become addictive and,

just like any other drug,

consume all our strength and dignity,

bind all our power and potential,

reduce us to slavish addicts and will not only keep us from achieving anything tangible and lovable in life

but,

ultimately,

will even make us destroy ourselves

and our surroundings.

What we NEED today is grown-up men

and women taking responsibility

for global governance in the real world, and not cowardly people escaping from this real world,

which they cannot handle,

to a virtual reality where they are presented with a simplified world with simplified solutions for simplified problems.

Once addicted to this simplified world, they will at some point try to transpose it back to reality,

and what you get then is these horrendous rapes or massacres of innocent people

by deluded addicts who have lost any sense of reality.

But perhaps the powerful

even prefer that -

than having all these potentially powerful people growing up,

starting to take responsibility,

to ask uncomfortable questions,

to demand real solutions for real problems and to hold the powerful to account. Already in ancient Rome the "Games", where gladiators and animals were slaughtered for the entertainment of the masses,

And

were deliberately employed

as the "drug" of the people.

"Bread and Circus",

as it was called in politics,

were provided by the dictators to appease the masses and keep them unconscious of or,

at least,

complacent with their subdued status

and to prevent them from rising up and claiming participation

in political life

and the riches of the Empire.

Today,

it is no different

when,

ever more often,

dozens or even hundreds of innocents have to pay with their blood,

their hopes

and their lives

for the sedation of the masses with modern

“burgers and games".

Viewing Pleasure

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Viewing Pleasure

So much I love  -

Depending on my mood -

Alphaville

La Dolce Vita

Vixen

(Those are the obvious ones )

But I can soundly recommend -

1. Hannah Arendt, by the German director Margarethe von Trotta, 2012,

the biopic about the philosopher and political theorist Hannah Arendt,

a courageous woman whose work on totalitarianism is again relevant today

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-rnFLnu2jg

2. "Farewell to Europe", by Maria Schrader, 2017, a beautiful film about the writer Stefan Zweig who fled from Nazism and took his life in Brazil - a relevant story for Europe and the world today, from Bolsonaro's Brazil to Trump's United States

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPxz2OQeDh0

3. Italian movie "Perfect strangers", from 2017, about a dinner party during which seven friends decide to play a dangerous game. All of them place their cellphones on the table and agree to make all texts and calls public in an attempt to prove that they have nothing to hide.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lOUnBsjGuY

4. "Zabriskie Point" by Michelangelo Antonioni, from 1970, because of California and because of the movie's depiction of the events after the sexual revolution of 1968 - It was the only film Antonioni ever directed in the United States, mesmerizing ending scene:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=guOmJM8xvHA

5. Everyone has been watching the TV series Chernobyl, but better to watch "Stalker" by Andrei Tarkovsky, from 1979, it's art, philosophy and science fiction at the same time

Here in the West, by Pamela Anderson

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Here in the West, 
there has been a lot of finger-pointing at Russia in the past years, 
as if in a desperate attempt to revive the “good old times” of the Cold War, when all evil could be so conveniently projected on the Soviet Union. 
As if a forced re-animation of the old enemy could somehow absolve the West of the increasingly obvious need for critical self-introspection and democratic reform in the face of its own accelerating political decline.

Sure, we should be careful not to praise Russia too much. 
After all, they have caused a lot of unjustified suffering in Syria and Ukraine, crack down on human rights defenders and detain lots of political prisoners simply because of their dissent. 
While Russia clearly is not without blame, they certainly are not nearly as evil as they are being portrayed by the West and, in many respects, may even have a less violent and exploitative global track-record than the West.

As a citizen of the West, 
I feel that my primary responsibility is to expose Western dishonesty and double standards: 
This constant disgraceful whining about alleged Russian interference in US elections, simply because the losing camp still cannot find the strength of character to acknowledge that it was the exposure and revelation of their own corruption that caused their defeat – 
not at the hands of Russian hackers, 
but at the hands of the American people making their votes count. 
At the same time, the US are themselves interfering with just about any foreign political process and imposing sanctions and threatening or starting wars against just about any government that does not comply with US policy preferences. 
This irresponsible self-righteousness has already brutally, 
uselessly and unlawfully destroyed the hopes and lives of millions of innocent children, women and men in countries such as Iraq, Libya, Venezuela, 
and Afghanistan, 
just to name a few, 
and now it looks like we will soon have to witness the same inexcusable tragedy unfolding once again, 
in Iran.

When will this finally stop? 
When will we finally decide to hold our leaders to account? 
Where are the prosecutions of Western wars of aggression, 
their war crimes and their exploitative corruption? 
Where is Western leadership in democracy, human rights and environmental protection? 
What else does the West have to offer the world to today than unrestrained exploitation, 
political decadence, 
and moral bankruptcy? 
As a citizen of the West, 
and as a member of the human family, 
I am heartbroken and disgusted at what is being done in my name!

My Perfect Summer

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How are you spending the summer?

I am working all over Europe but in my spare time I’m building my family compound of cabins on my waterfront property on Vancouver Island finally. I’ve had the property for 20 years and have never had the time, focus or resources to start - so my parents are excited it’s finally happening and they love wearing their hard hats buzzing around on a golf cart to make sure all the trees are not being taken down or hurt in anyway. - 

My mom is a natural gardener and she is making sure trees are delicately trimmed - saving all of them is important to me . It’s a labor of love in my home town of Ladysmith. 

My dad has just fully recovered from a stroke and this gave him the incentive to work hard to walk again, eat healthier and take his medicine - 

I love to see my parents holding hands, madly in love still and able to watch (where they were married) the property they started their lives together on be restored as it was - 

Who would be your ideal travelling companion, real or imaginary, living or dead?

Julian Assange - he is so interesting, knowledgeable and fun. We would have the best time - I pray he’ll be able to travel again and live the free life he deserves to do his work and we are a good team. Our time together is always productive. No matter where we are. 
The embassy or prison. His spirit is in us all. If only we were as brave as he is. As you can see everything he has been talking about is happening before our eyes. Sometimes it’s hard to accept the messenger- A pioneer always takes some heat and geniuses can look crazy - but thank God for them - 

How conscious are you of your carbon footprint?

Very conscious. 

I’m trying to fly less and simplify. I’m going to end up in Canada - I prefer to live in a small interior space with big porches and view of nature - with my books and my dogs and remember who I am. I don’t need a lot. 

What’s your summer soundtrack?

Midnightkids I could listen to my sons music all the time. Dylan writes such beautiful happy songs. 

What’s on your summer reading list?

I have 100’s of books to read, reread this summer. Most of my books are in Canada. I carry a few with me and the rest are sprinkled around my sons house. 

Depending on my mood I will read Jung, Khalo or Nin for fun - but I read serious books on Art and politics. Historical biographies, 

Love, poetry - so many books I couldn’t possibly give a list- OK wait. Simply 

- Hans Christian Andersen, "The Emperor's New Clothes", as children globally demand urgent action on climate change, this short tale still shows that children usually say the truth no one wants to hear

- Yanis Varoufakis, "Talking to my daughter about the economy", as the maverick Greek economist just entered Greek parliament, this book explains how did we end up in this mess, a true manual not only for children

- George Orwell, 1984, as hundred years later Orwell's dystopia turned into an instruction manual from Trump to Bolsonaro, it is more relevant than ever to understand the dangers of surveillance capitalism

- In defense of Julian Assange, edited by Tariq Ali and Margaret Kunstler, OR Books, 2019, as Julian Assange faces extradition to the United States, this is an important reader with texts by Noam Chomsky, Slavoj Žižek, Ai Weiwei, me and many others

- Srećko Horvat, "Poetry from the Future", Penguin, 2019 - Srećko my good friend writes how I think. I love his book ‘The Radicality of Love”. 

Love is a radical choice in this crazy world right now. When we need it more than ever. 

Do you favour beach, city or rural destinations?

I’m in love with Ladysmith, Malibu and I’ll miss Cassis which is next to Marseille. I’m sad I was unable to use the beach house I rented there this summer.

But I sent my friends there to enjoy it and bring my dog back to Canada with them. 

I will continue to learn French. I’ll be in France a lot. It is still very important to me. I will get a tutor next time I’m there. I’m not giving up on France. 

Part of living a romantic life is heart break. Melancholy- I wouldn’t want it any other way. 

Live and learn. 

Compiled by Jessica Heron-Langton. Illustrations by Hilary Kirby

via www.ft.com

Letter to The Honorable Jason Kenney Premier of Alberta and The Honorable Devin Dreeshen Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Province of Alberta

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The Honorable Jason Kenney Premier of Alberta

The Honorable Devin Dreeshen Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Province of Alberta

Dear Messrs. Kenney and Dreeshen,

After recently moving back to my beautiful native Canada, my heart sank as I read about six horses who died in this year's chuckwagon races at the Calgary Stampede. As an honorary director of PETA, I urge you to direct the Stampede to ban these deadly races.

Tightening the rules—as the Stampede did in 2010—isn't enough. More than a dozen horses have died since then, because these races are inherently cruel and dangerous. Horses have suffered from fractured legs and broken backs, while others have had heart attacks. Anyone watching can see animals foaming at the mouth as their eyes roll back in their heads.

And the world is watching. Global news headlines about the Stampede show that Alberta knows these races are deadly for horses but continues to allow them anyway. This cruelty and indifference do not represent the Canada I know and love.

Please use your authority to end chuckwagon racing before more horses die.

Sincerely,

Pamela Anderson