A social activist’s holiday letter to family

Note: My family doesn’t discuss my social activism with me. They seem somewhat uncomfortable about the topics; most are already pressed with busy schedules even if they weren’t uncomfortable. After this holiday season without discussion, I decided to send this:

Dear Family,

It was great seeing everyone over the holidays! Given limitations of time being together, I wanted to include you on the status of my “hobby” of social activism. I know this hobby can be difficult to approach in conversation, and would like to share this with family. I thought writing you a “brief” might be best to fill in historical gaps, and update you on current status.

Please feel free to treat this as any other hobby any of us engage in: sports, art, travel, etc. I’m just sharing with you. And please also consider as with any of our hobbies, I’ve only grown in competence and comprehensive knowledge.

So here are: background, an update on recent history with resources should you find them of interest, and a recommendation how to relate to this information.

Background: As you know, this “hobby” began with 18 years’ of work from 1979 to 1997 as I helped create and grow the citizens’ lobby, RESULTS working to end domestic and global poverty. We grew from SoCal (I founded the NoCal group), and grew to over 100 US communities and 7 countries; becoming a leading voice in both areas. Part of that hobby was to help shape and deliver 200-300 briefs for members of Congress.

The work we did was impressive: United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Executive Director, James Grant, credited RESULTS with saving over one million children’s lives a year from increased funding we won for cost-effective programs that reduce infant mortality. We championed two UN Summits for heads of state: the 1990 World Summit for Children (largest meeting of heads of state in world history) and the 1997 Microcredit Summit (topic of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize). The UN and all parties were so impressed with RESULTS’ work that we were asked to manage nations’ progress toward the Microcredit Summit’s goals. Today, over 100 million of the world’s lowest income families now have access to credit; a total population greater than the United States.

I assumed teaching would be a temporary career until I’d be absorbed into government work to realize those policies when either US political party became serious about ending poverty. After the second UN summit when both parties continued their unbroken record of reneging on every promise to end poverty, both public and private, I concluded I needed to shift the focus of my civic activism.

I needed to follow the money.

Update on recent history: Since 1997 I’ve focused my “hobby” on economics and war research. In 2006, motivated by so many war lies that I couldn’t keep them all in mind, I revived my experience from RESULTS to write a detailed brief for interested members of Congress and publication: War with Iraq and Afghanistan, rhetoric for war with Iran to explain and document the extent of disinformation told the US public for current wars. In 2009 I was invited to contribute to alternative media, and now publish on three sites: CSU Sonoma’s Daily Censored, Washington’s Blog, and Examiner.com. Other sites republish from there, with a popular article having page views at least seeing the title in the tens of millions.

My economics research was honored by the Claremont Colleges in 2012 by inviting me as one of six international speakers to present at their conference on monetary reform. Among Advanced Placement Economics teachers who shared with me, they are unaware of any other high school teacher invited by a research university to share their “hobby” work with the public. The published version of the last section with links to all sections of the paper:

Money and credit as public services for full-employment, optimal infrastructure, ending debt slavery: Epic proponents, related history of US government and corporate media

I helped create The Public Banking Institute by initiating lobbying in 2009 for a California state-owned bank for at-cost credit. We’re now the leading organization to explain and document those benefits. My article on our 2013 conference:

Public Banking Conference good news: all solutions already here for deficits, debt, full-employment

One of the things we in alternative media do is “catch and pass” to take valuable information we find, give it a catchy title, make a connection to some other interesting fact(s), and then pass it forward. A tiny article I did this for was recognized for 2012-2013 by CSU Sonoma’s Project Censored as the #2 most-important news story unrecognized by corporate media. In this case, outstanding research was unreported by corporate media, and my catchier title, synopsis of the research punchline in a few sentences, and connection to other facts brought the story well-deserved attention through reposts on alternative media sites:

1% hide $21 trillion, US big banks hide $10 trillion; ending world poverty: $3 trillion

Alternative media is vital for these stories. Among the best evidence I have is how the New York Times chose to “report” the 1990 World Summit for Children that took place in NYC, and in complete rejection of RESULTS’ direct communications of accurate and powerful info. This one insight into what corporate media is, and how they protect areas of power from public scrutiny shows why those of us with competence in perhaps 100 areas of tremendous public importance are compelled to take our messages to the public through media that we create.

I took my detailed brief for Congress on war lies and created a short public paper that seems among the top few in alternative media to explain war law, and how we now know from our own government’s documentation that all reasons for these wars were known to be false as they were told. This is a good example how alternative media makes clear important facts that the public kind of know about, but are kept confused by corporate media’s intentional obfuscations:

How a government teacher easily proves Occupy’s claim of US War Crimes

I’ve become a leading advocate for reforms in government CAFR data (Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports). The link also has a 22-minute TV interview I did from Dad’s office:

CAFR summary: if $600B ‘fund’ can’t fund $27B pension, $16B budget deficit, why have it?

Over the last four years I’ve had perhaps 20 different interviews on radio, podcasts, and I think three on TV. Here’s one; I think I have four or five you can search with James Fetzer’s The Real Deal.

I’m also a leader to advocate for either arrests or Truth & Reconciliation for the obvious crimes centering in war and money that the facts reveal. One of the interesting facts those of us with this hobby face is that our “leaders” who engage in these War Crimes and “bankster looting” don’t have an elegant exit strategy without having to admit to massive crimes.

I also tried five satire articles; which I enjoy writing, but didn’t catch-on with the public 🙁

July 4: Obama to exhume, posthumously hang Paul Revere for spying, treason

Obama celebrates 30 million US war-kills since WW2; past Hitler to #3 all-time!

Obama launches video game contest: 100 child winners to drone-kill real terrorists

Obama declares War on Terror Financing (WTF); microcredit is now terrorism

Obama signs ‘Jesus the terrorist’ bill for Jesus’ bank terrorism, treason, 9/11 deaths

Recommendation how to relate to this information: As a professional educator with background helping brief Congress, I suggest you simply hold my “hobby” in that domain up to the same academic professional standards as for anyone else: don’t believe or disbelieve anything.

I make factual claims, provide documentation, and am open to any corrections or refutation anyone can provide from any source.  I’m willing to explain any topic and guide people through the documentation. I assert these are facts under consideration; all objective and independently verifiable.

For example, among my colleagues working to end current US wars, including members of Congress, we are unaware of any argument anywhere of how the wars are legal. All the war proponents have to keep their wars are an ignorant public, jingoistic and fear-provoking propaganda, and complicit corporate media. And we’re talking about just one simple law that is arguably the most important one the US has (and easier to understand than sports laws we master like the infield fly rule in baseball).

I recommend that you withhold any negative judgment unless you’re willing to do the reading, talk with me, and/or do some kind of research. I also suggest that you consider that consistent with the history of this planet, governments lie in areas of war, money, and media. Consider this history of US wars that makes this clear. You may recall the Founding Fathers were clear in their admonitions that America would be vulnerable to oligarchs concentrating their own power and taking away the freedoms they forged.

If you’re interested in discussing any of these topics or have questions of any kind, of course, I’m interested in my “hobby” to talk about them. If this topic is not of interest, and/or too upsetting, then feel free to not discuss it anymore than anyone else’s hobby 🙂

I appreciated your support when my “hobby” of ending poverty was more easily understood. I of course appreciate support in this new expression, and completely understand if it’s too difficult to relate to or discuss.

I love you, and know that you love me. We all wish each other the best for success in our lives.

May 2014 be the best year yet for all of us!

Carl

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  • wunsacon

    Happy holidays, Carl & WB crew. Best wishes for 2014.

    • Carl_Herman

      thanks, wunsacon 🙂 Yes, may 2014 be our best year yet. We’ll find out!

  • Tonto

    This is the typical confession, and typically re-assuring pat on the back, of yet another dangerously deluded Harvard grad. Let it go, Carl. You have a long life ahead of you. Hopefully you’ll learn something that will help shut you mouth during the remainder of it. Hopefully, because for the time being, you are wasting your time on this earth by not enjoying the absolutely unique beauty that life offers everyone, regardless whether or not they are driven to show everyone how smart they are by the insanity of academia that expresses itself at Harvard and almost every other institution of higher education. Those who can’t, Carl, TEACH!

    Instead of going off to college, perhaps you should have worked a few years first. That experience would have inserted some much needed humility into your fist-pounding persona. As it is, you are stuck in high-speed motor-mouth, rambling on and on, just as if you believed half of what you say, AND, you weren’t just trying to impress everyone.

    There should be an annual parade for Harvard fellows like you, Carl, a parade where each of you (and Simon Wheeler) can dress-up and tell your know-it-all stories to the anxious crowds eager to learn what it takes to be a professional genius with the hare-brained solution for every problem that ever plagued mankind, and some problems that have never plagued mankind too.

    2014 is upon us. The WB cuckoo clock just let out a screeching Carl-article in celebration of it.

    Happy holidays, Carl & WB and the rest of the fruitcake crew. Best wishes for 2014. LoL

    • Carl_Herman

      Gee, thanks, tonto.

      I wish you well, also. If you want the life of advocating keeping one’s mouth shut while opening it in condemnation of those who share what’s most important to them, while we help save a few million lives, go for it.

      I’ll just be myself, and you be you, tonto. From what I see, the issues we address need to be shared or else the future that comes from silence would be much worse than struggling with how to deal with people like me!

      Regarding this topic: this is my good-faith latest attempt to just be myself with my family. They have all the rights that you express to respond in any way they feel best. One of the roles I see we all have is to facilitate choice for the future we most want and will work for. I’ll address the topics I see of vital importance, including whatever noises we receive from official sources, the public like you, and family.

      Do what you see best, of course. Just be proud of your choices, I recommend.

      • jo6pac

        Thanks Carl

        • Carl_Herman

          You’re welcome, jo6pac! Thank you for your self-expression in building a brighter future. We’ll discover what’s next as we move forward as best we can 🙂

      • VicDis

        Even though Tonto’s reply seemed caustic and insulting at first glance, I actually garnered a gleam of sincerity in there. they did give a bit of very good advice: “enjoying the absolutely unique beauty that life offers everyone,” For high-strung types bent on saving the world, it can be good to slow down and smell the roses with our loved ones.every so often 😉

        • Carl_Herman

          I agree, and our family practices this enjoyment.

      • wunsacon

        Carl,

        A quote from Churchill seems very relevant here: “You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks”.

        • Carl_Herman

          My destination is the simple truth. One area I find of importance is to use distracting comments just enough to provide choice to readers: where should our attention go? Should it go to ad hominem distractions from the topic, or to serious consideration of the topic?

          And that said, yes, I agree: after pointing out “counter-arguments” as no more significant than barking, we all have more important and interesting things to do.

  • gozounlimited

    California’s Holiday Message From the Climate Change Fuckers……Obama, Boxer, and Deviant Brown and their Monsanto Demons….. http://www.usatoday.com/story/weather/2013/12/26/california-drought-water-shortage-wildfires/4192275/

    Driest year ever in Calif. sparks fire, water fears …. all performed with geoengineering and chemtrails THAT IS SMOTHERING US ….. FUCK YOU!!!!!!!!!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!!!!!!MURDERERS!!!!!

  • VicDis

    I would say for starters that it’s too long, you lose them after the first half… What’s the old adage, “Keep it simple, stupid!” 😉

    • Carl_Herman

      Good thing I have the love and respect of my family for them to read a whole five minutes 🙂

      To quote Albert Einstein, I can explain things as simply as possible, but not any simpler.

  • Luke

    Carl, your holiday letter reads a bit like a self-aggrandizing resume. Are you trying to legitimize yourself to your family?

    -Luke

    • Carl_Herman

      Interesting responses that continue to speculate about my personality rather than the importance of how to bridge discomfort of family recognizing unlawful US wars that kill millions, bankster looting of trillions, and ongoing poverty that harms billions, AND how one can be one’s self doing so with family.

      Whatever, Luke. If your interest in that psychology is what you want to bring attention to, go for it. Out of all the points of importance to human beings pointed to in the communication, and the need for human partnership to solve crushing problems, you choose to attack a messenger. Better make sure your thoughts and voice are directed where you really want them to go, brother. Another motivation I have with my beloved family is not neglect facilitating choices so they, too, do not make the mistake of attacking messengers of important information.

      My intention is to communicate to my family regarding a topic that they find difficult to address and I’m sure speculate about, and that I find important. Families communicate, Luke; at least successful ones. This is my pro-active current effort to best be myself given a challenging condition faced by many activists.

      • Luke

        Please take my comment as constructive criticism and not as a personal attack. You might have a great message your family (and others) would benefit from hearing but if it comes across as “look at how important I am” it won’t be received well.

        • Carl Herman

          Understood and agreed, Luke. I’m doing the best I can imagine to have anyone, including family, have the best factual grasp I can offer on these important issues. I’m trying to not overstate nor understate reality.

          We’re kinda’ a technically proficient family, so this particular tone is what we use when we’re trying to honestly state topics that require some factual background and status. We can talk this way about golf, too…

  • Will

    I’ve just started sharing this kind of information with my family over the past 12 months – lies of war, peak resources, massive environmental problems, the nature of propaganda… I definitely respect how hard it is just to engage people in simple conversation about it. Thanks for showing one way around that problem.

  • Chris

    Dear Mr. Herman,

    Let me begin by wishing you and everyone at WB a (belated) Merry Christmas and a happy, productive New Year. This blog is without a doubt one of the best written and researched sites out there. A true credit to the alt media!

    I write to you today in regard to the monies you’ve courageously brought out into the open–that is, the massive “slush funds” referred to in the various state, county, and municipal CAFRs. As I research this matter I can’t help but think of the reports I’ve read from time to time that claim that every state, county, and municipal government–or at least what we’ve come to think of as governments–are in fact privately owned corporations. This unusual allegation appears to gain credence if we use an online corporate registry such as the one provided by Dun and Bradstreet to seemingly verify that indeed, virtually any given city “government” can be found to be a registered corporation.

    To illustrate the point, I’ve selected the city of Irvine, CA, in honor of the 20+ miserable years I spent there lol. Although unfortunately I don’t have the requisite funds to get the full report, including their corporate ID number, here we can see that apparently yes, the City of Irvine is a corporation:

    https://creditreports.dnb.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/IballValidationCmd?storeId=11154&catalogId=71154&searchType=BSF&busName=city%20of%20irvine&state=CA&country=US&cm_mmc=dnb-_-home-_-retail-_-lookup_-topbar#goTop

    As is their lovely, civil rights-minded police department:

    https://creditreports.dnb.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/IballValidationCmd?storeId=11154&catalogId=71154&productId=0&searchType=BSF&state=CA&bstSiteSearchUrl=https%3A%2F%2Fcreditreports.dnb.com%2Fm%2Fsearch-results.html%3Fq%3D&searchPerform=true&hiddenSessionId=907000401&busName=irvine+police+department&country=US#goTop

    Interestingly enough, one of the listings says “Also Traded as IRVINE POLICE DEPARTMENT” (all capitals, for those of you who subscribe to the “STRAWMAN THEORY”). Traded as? Hmmm…. At any rate, if you find this as curious as I do, you can look up virtually any “government” org you can think of at any level–up to and including Federal agencies–and find that they are registered on Dun and Bradstreet as corporations. In fact I encourage you to do so.

    If we accept the strange notion that we are governed by privately owned, presumably for-profit corporations, then the explanation for the CAFRs and all they reveal becomes much more clear. Quite simply, these are the various corporations’ earnings, plus a hefty amount of interest and capital gains due to how they invested their/our money over the years. Clearly they’ve done well for themselves–all the while, as you note, whining about being in debt and hence not able to provide social services. Cold blooded? That’s the NWO for you. They may not literally be reptilians from another world, but they sure act that way sometimes.

    In view of all of this, the inevitable question becomes: who owns these companies? Who are the shareholders? That, my friend, I simply don’t know. I’ve been trying to puzzle this out for a while now. Whoever these people/institutions are, I believe they are the ones we must focus upon in order to bring about the release of these funds. Although I applaud your efforts in trying to get some answers from your local elected officials, I highly doubt that these individuals or their counterparts in any given corporate municipality have any decision-making authority over the accounts. Many of them probably have little to any idea of how this whole system works; I imagine that even the ones who do have no say in the matter. In other words, elected officials are not shareholders, and I’d be shocked if they have any access to the accounts whatsoever.

    I’ve been thinking about filing a FOI request to get some of these answers. Due diligence prior to doing so would seemingly entail contacting the business office/comptroller of any given corporate municipality and getting their on-the-record comment as to whether or not they are operating in a corporate capacity, and moreover who the shareholders of their corporation are. The FOI will come in handy after they decline to comment, give evasive answers, etc. If after taking all of these steps we can actually come up with who the shareholders are, we can then proceed to confront them with litigation (the torts involved would be breach of fiduciary duty viz. their wholly unnecessary austerity/genocide programs while they’re flush with taxpayers’ cash and the proceeds of having invested that cash; fraud and embezzlement on a massive scale) or at the very least make sure that they become household names via the WB and other alt media standouts.

    What do you think? I could really use your feedback here.

    Thanks again for your courage and inspiration! You and the rest of the good folks at WB are doing right by the name George Washington, and I can’t help but think that he would be proud of you. I know I am.

    All the best,

    Chris

    • Carl Herman

      Thank you, Chris; well said. The only feedback I have is to keep digging in the direction you both think and SENSE/FEEL is the most important. Yeah, Jordan Maxwell has done a lot of awesome work in the area you point to.

      I can only do so much with my “hobby time,” so I find it prudent to demand arrests of the puppet-leaders, then create safety for whistle-blowers to help us understand how much we’ve been truly abused.

      My colleagues/friends really don’t know what the power is behind the scenes. We consider many ideas, and hold those we cannot refute as possible. Nobody I work with has time and interest to dig any faster or deeper than what we work to share with the public. Whatever these asset-holes are who dictatorially claim to own us and our labor, they are cold-blooded at least in the common use of that term 🙂

      • Chris

        Thanks for the encouragement Carl! After looking into this further, I feel a bit foolish. As it turns out there’s nothing unusual or controversial about a municipal corporation; in fact, incorporation has been the standard as far as local governance goes for many decades now. I would have known that had I done some basic research on the matter before opening my pie hole, lol. It’s a good thing I didn’t call the Irvine comptroller with those questions, they would’ve had a hearty laugh at my expense!

        That having been said, I’m not quite sure that municipal corps. are meant to be for-profit. Perhaps what we observe with the CAFRs is simply these companies operating outside of their legal mandate; or perhaps after a while they’re able to re-file their corporate charters as for-profit entities and therefore “legally” pile up the wealth we now know they’ve been accumulating. This would explain the multiple filings that D&B has for the City of Irvine, for example. I’ll have to look into it further. It’s unsettling to see D&B filings for courthouses, federal agencies and the like, no? Something strange is going on there IMO.

        You’re probably already familiar with Clint Richardson’s work, but just in case you haven’t read his brilliant, Matt Taibbi-like analysis of the Stockton bankruptcy, please check it out:

        http://realitybloger.wordpress.com/tag/city-of-comprehensive-annual-financial-report/

        He references the same accounting trick I’ve heard Walter describe, the one they use to claim insolvency despite having plenty of money stashed away: counting future liabilities such as pension payments 10 years from now as current while refusing to treat revenues in the same manner. Another interesting factoid that bears further investigation is the Government Finance Officers Association or GFOA, which may very well have come up with the above strategy. I imagine they’ve got a boilerplate approach to double bookkeeping that they’ve been implementing across the country for quite some time now.

        Anyway I’ve rambled on enough, thanks for your time. Jordan Maxwell is an interesting dude, very knowledgeable about c’est que vie trusts and things like that. Good luck with your family, and remember what Gandhi said: “Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.” Keep fighting the good fight!

        Best regards,

        Chris

        • Chris

          Sorry for the double post; I got an error message at first and didn’t think my message got through. My bad!

      • Chris

        Thanks for the encouragement Carl! After looking into this further, I feel a bit foolish. As it turns out there’s nothing unusual or controversial about a municipal corporation; in fact, incorporation has been the standard as far as local governance goes for many decades now. I would have known that had I done some basic research on the matter before opening my pie hole, lol. It’s a good thing I didn’t call the Irvine comptroller with those questions, they would’ve had a hearty laugh at my expense!

        That having been said, I’m not quite sure that municipal corps. are meant to be for-profit. Perhaps what we observe with the CAFRs is simply these companies operating outside of their legal mandate; or perhaps after a while they’re able to re-file their corporate charters as for-profit entities and therefore “legally” pile up the wealth we now know they’ve been accumulating. This would explain the multiple filings that D&B has for the City of Irvine, for example. I’ll have to look into it further. It’s unsettling to see D&B filings for courthouses, federal agencies and the like, no? Something strange is going on there IMO.

        You’re probably already familiar with Clint Richardson’s work, but just in case you haven’t read his brilliant, Matt Taibbi-like analysis of the Stockton bankruptcy, please check it out:

        http://realitybloger.wordpress.com/tag/city-of-comprehensive-annual-financial-report/

        He references the same accounting trick I’ve heard Walter describe, the one they use to claim insolvency despite having plenty of money stashed away: counting future liabilities such as pension payments 10 years from now as current while refusing to treat revenues in the same manner. Another interesting factoid that bears further investigation is the Government Finance Officers Association or GFOA, which may very well have come up with the above strategy. I imagine they’ve got a boilerplate approach to double bookkeeping that they’ve been implementing across the country for quite some time now.

        Anyway I’ve rambled on enough, thanks for your time. Jordan Maxwell is an interesting dude, very knowledgeable about c’est que vie trusts and things like that. Good luck with your family, and remember what Gandhi said: “Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.” Keep fighting the good fight!

        Best regards,

        Chris

        • Carl Herman

          Hey Chris,
          Thank you for pressing forward in leadership to help everyone see our true environment. Yeah, Clint’s work is awesome! And I want to point out that the CAFR hoarding is not legal in any sense of the word: it’s criminal fraud that fundamentally misrepresents the public’s status with provable damages in the collective trillions of dollars.

          This is our money, with the larger governments in cities, counties, and states officially telling us they’re “broke” and have “no options” other than imposed austerity. That is a crime of fraud from people with legal responsibility to accurately report our financial status.

          We all have mistaken assumptions that we correct as we learn. All we can do is move forward in good faith effort with invitation of public correction to improve our good faith understanding and communication.

          We’ll see what we can do. We’ll all discover this together 🙂

  • ShankyS

    Carl, your’s is what I believe to be the typical family situation where one is awake and the others remain stuck in their MSM slumber. Those willing to seek the truth find it, and the rest, well, they remain lost in the Matrix. I am in a similar situation where I am even more tuned out than my ultra liberal brother (Brown, Columbia) is in a conservative family. The truth hurts and most chose not to experience the pain of reality. Sadly the warnings will not be heeded and the knowledge will not be used to correct the situation. I’ve been able to convert my 82yo mother of all people to see reality. She embraces it but still remains unwilling to take that final step to the other side. Keep up the hard work. Try to wake up as many as you can. This is all we can do.

    • Carl Herman

      Well said; thank you, ShankyS. Yeah, we’ll do our best. I love my family; we all have our shortcomings. I’ll give them my best effort to provide opportunity to embrace reality.

      I feel it’s important to offer them the choice to leave the Matrix. But that choice is theirs.

  • spiritof76

    True progressives are always humble, never ever as egomaniacal and arrogant as this character is. If this is truly a letter to his family he must be one pain in the posterior to his family just like the warmongers are to the human family.

    • Carl Herman

      Gee, thanks, spiritof76. Your name is interesting, and I agree that Sam Adams and pals were pains in the arses to at least some of their family members. Those of us engaged in this challenge to communicate honestly to family and community have a little more respect for this difficult work.

      But again, pal, if you really want to speculate on my character rather than the importance of communicating facts of warmongers on the human family, if that’s what the focus of attention should be in your world and work, good luck with that.