This week it was my absolute pleasure to take part in a long chat with Lino Faelnar from Defenders of Indigenous Languages of the Archipelago. A lawyer, linguistic expert and language preservationist, Lino is also a genuine renaissance man. Our conversation was all over the map, both literally and figuratively as we bounced around from indigenous Filipino languages to the history of Crimea, Suharto and E. Timor, strange coincidences that seem to connect the Vikings to China, the Basque, Celts and the indigenous Melanesians who inhabited the Philippine islands before the Austronesian migrations. From Dr. Charles Tart to linguist Noam Chomsky and concepts like linguistic fascism or intellectual piracy, we covered quite a bit of ground in a little over 2 hours. Endangered languages and cultural genocide to the importance of folk tales and how stories and language affect our window on the world and much more today on through the plastic screen…
Unfortunately this was the last episode of the podcast for a while. I’ll be on hiatus until I can get the cost of the surgery taken care of and recover from that, but once I have that out of the way, already have several amazing guests from artists to best selling authors and ordinary people with extraordinary stories.
This week on through the plastic screen podcast… I randomly happened across the #takeUsBackToChina hashtag at the beginning of June. It only took a few minutes of reading before I was drawn to reach out to some of the students so they could share their stories with me.
There will always be obstacles when you work to create a better life, but in the era of coronavirus, there are even more hurdles. Especially for international students. In some cases online classes are offered, but in between drastic time zone differences, needing to work and the impracticality of trying to use Powerpoint slides to learn surgery make online classes impractical for most.
One common thread seems to be the existence of China International Students Union and the community gathered around the hashtag giving students some hope. For more information I recommend following Joyce Lau of Times Higher Education as well as the Twitter and Instagram profiles for CISU.
In the past few months, China’s Global Times has reported on a similar situation faced by Chinese international students unable to return to the US for studies. The Chinese government and the students themselves have a right to be upset, but a very similar situation is faced by students from Europe, Russia, the middle East and throughout Asia.
Here’s hoping with more eyes and ears on the situation the plight of these students will be heard and China’s “soft power failure” as Curtis Chin put it. For those interested in learning more about this situation, in addition to just perusing the hashtag I highly recommend following Joyce Lau of Times Higher Education who has been reporting on this since 2020 and recently did an update at the end of May.
My guest this week is someone I met through my time doing kratom advocacy. Nina Ajdin was a refugee from Bosnia during the period of intense war and ethnic cleansing, since her teenage years she has been dealing with topical steroid withdrawal for years. Despite the painful and dangerous side effects, she writes, has appeared in a documentary Preventable. To learn more about TSW you can visit the UK website Scratchthat.org.uk or www.ITSAN.org in the US. You can help with her medical bills by supporting her GoFundMe
I spent months talking to victims of a Texas ponzi and real estate fraud ring before sharing my notes and numbers with journalist Alissa Fleck. For backstory make sure to check out Crimescoop.org’s coverage. Part II will be coming soon. Dozens of people lost everything, some, even their lives. Today we will be focusing on Jessica’s story.
Jessica was married to one of the members of the con ring. It wasn’t until she found herself living in Costa Rica that some issues began to arise that were too big to ignore. We will hear her harrowing experience and courageous escape. She has spent years keeping in contact with some of the others who were hurt by this callous gang and has repeatedly done what she can to get this story of multimillion dollar fraud, a mini-Madoff ring that preyed not on the fabulously wealthy but on people from all walks of life.
For those familiar with MK-Ultra, Project Paperclip and Gladio, the idea of military and intelligence working with Nazis shouldn’t be too much of a surprise. Ramsey’s latest book delves into the Order of 9 Angles/O9A which boasts connections as far ranging as David Tibet of the underground goth band Current 93 to Operation Gladio front group Column 88 (H being the 8th letter of the alphabet, 88 is shorthand for “Heil Hitler”).
What’s more, these groups are responsible for decades of murders, terror attacks and other atrocities and they have cells, or “nexions” to use their lingo, all over the world. Make sure to check out Ramsey’s site William Ramsey Investigates as well. You can find his podcast and previous books and even get signed copies direct from the author. Ramsey was also one of the first podcasters to interview me about my bookPedogate Primer: the politics of pedophilia you can find that interview here.