Ecoterrorism....

I think it's the wrong way to send a message. All it does is make environmental activists seem crazy and unfeeling. And aside from that, it contributes to pollution and other environmental problems by burning the homes. I think it is stupid and accomplishes nothing good. It polarizes people already polarized, it furthers stereotypes that are generally untrue (i.e., that enviros are nuts), and it doesn't have any real effect. The developers/owners will collect insurance, build again, and you're right back where you started except you've released a bunch of toxins into the air and soil and you've wasted trees' lives. The people who agree with green communities and homes won't buy McMansions anyway, and the people who don't care will not be deterred by a few homes being burned.

I see it as a total waste.

The end doesn't justify the means.
 
Is it terrorism, though? Were the houses inhabited, or were they just property on the market? Arson is a crime, certainly, but when is it terrorism?

Is waterboarding terrorism? Is dropping bombs on civillian populations terrorism? Is corporate news coupled with government interests that hope to drive home a message of fear terrorism? Where does one draw the line?

In my opinion, the cry of terrorism is horribly overused and is completely charged politically. It is used to get a reaction.
 
Well, yeah, I would say terrorism is overused. Not sure how the word affects others, but that means I almost entirely ignore it and just focus on the actions. Regardless of whether the term was justified in this case or not, arson just ain't right.

I think when someone is in opposition to violence (against the earth or humanity), the best way to demonstrate it is to be non-violent. Otherwise, one just appears to be hypocritical.
 
Not sure how the word affects others, but that means I almost entirely ignore it and just focus on the actions.

Ah, yes. If only all of America were as clear-headed. I think there are still quite a few people out there who, when they hear the word 'terrorism,' think 9/11, possibly even re-experiencing on a visceral level some of that trauma.

path_of_one said:
Regardless of whether the term was justified in this case or not, arson just ain't right.

I think when someone is in opposition to violence (against the earth or humanity), the best way to demonstrate it is to be non-violent. Otherwise, one just appears to be hypocritical.

I would agree with all of that.

I don't think burning down empty houses--if they were indeed empty (I am assuming they were, assuming the story would mention it if people had died, been injured, or were in any danger)--is terrorism. Calling criminal arson of property terrorism, while at the same time turning a blind eye to our own state-sponsored terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan, the state terrorism of Israel against the Palestinians (speaking of America collectively here, especially our federal government, and not speaking of any individual), is also hypocritical and smacks of shrunken morals.

A smattering of $2 million houses being incinerated makes the news as terrorism, but the practice of waterboarding in the highest levels of our own government is shrugged off by those who should be held accountable for it as practical business, justified, or simply ignored.
 
I agree with you Pathless. The term terrorist and terrorism will soon be used for anyone daring to have or propagate views outside of government line. America has not learned the lessons of McCarthyism. Its pathetic really and I hope most people can see what's going on. But on the case in point my first step would be to investigate the developer and his financial solvency. Perhaps it was one or two crazies but such types are shunned by the big environmental activism groups. Both the organisation I am employed by and Greenpeace, for example, have strict rules on activism that include non-violence. Arson is a potentially violent act in that it could potentially put civilian and fire-fighters lives at risk. Whether it be an insurance job or the act of mindless nutters you can be certain of one thing... the politicians will extract every bit of capital out of it they can to make environmental activists appear extremists.

Tao
 
from merriam-websters
ter·ror·ism noun Date:1795 : the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion
Namaste Tao, Pathless,

How does what ELF does not fit the above definition, or what exactly is your definition?

Now I realize that ELF's actions tend to give folks with different methodologies a bad name, so my question is why do supporters of those organizations not want to separate themselves from the likes of these?

Interestingly we see the same thing with many muslims today, not willing to really stand up and the radical groups are wrong. We saw the same thing years ago with the KKK where Christian groups and the law were not willing to indicate they were wrong...

Is this due to the fact that they are brothers of sorts? And despite the fact that they are bringing them down, and breaking laws they are tolerated?
 
I think it's a matter of degree, wil. By the dictionary's definition of terror, even flag-burning could qualify since it is "destructive acts" that "intimidate the government."

I tend to think about whether or not the act was to incite fear as a means of initimidation or coercion. I seriously doubt if the developers were afraid. They were probably just angry at the delays. But it won't even cost them, I'm betting. Insurance will cover the damages.

So while it may fall within the Webster definition, I find that definition to be too broad to be useful. I think it's a play on people's emotions when the word terrorism is used in this way. Look at how we describe stuff- burning 5 houses is "ecoterrorism" implying all sorts of fear, but we call simulated drowing "waterboarding" (which sounds harmless, like surfboarding, boogie-boarding, etc.). When I first heard the term waterboarding I didn't know what it is and thought it can't be that bad from how it sounds. But it's awful and barbaric.

I just think the media plays on people's emotions and fears. It's shameful. But it's more shameful that many Americans don't think for themselves and get beyond the words. Whether we call it arson or terrorism, burning 5 houses (while definitely not right or justified), is just nothing compared to 9/11, torture, guerilla warfare, etc. that typically is considered terrorism.

When I heard "ecoterrorism," I expect something like Sherman's march in the Civil War... not some alleged wacked out extremist environmental org burning 5 houses. Maybe it's just me...
 
ELF is burning houses on Street of Dreams in Seattle?

Is this the wrong way to send a message? Where is the line?

Sorry I read this first time... and thought I saw it saying... (here we go) Basically a bunch of elves have gone on arson attacks in the "street of dreams"? I was going to make a comment about people thinking I am a bit to, you know, gone, up there, high....

so yeah, I've now bothered to look at the link, if no one got hurt, I am just going to go right out there and say... So what? It was just houses... Yeah you shouldn't go bruning up peoples homes... But it is just homes, these people it says here pay average 2 mill for a house like that? They can afford it... Who isn't a terrorist these days....

You shouldn't have to be afraid of people burning your homes down, and you should also listen to what people have to say... If they say it in the right way.. Every dream has it's end. Also there are those dreams that are not always so sweet... Street of dreams.. That really bothers me lol... I mean while there are places like ghettos and staving villages and all that ****.... How can you sleep at night in your 2mill house on the "street of freaking dreams"...... Sorry I am too high today I will shut up now.
 
I seriously doubt if the developers were afraid. They were probably just angry at the delays. But it won't even cost them, I'm betting. Insurance will cover the damages.

When I heard "ecoterrorism," I expect something like Sherman's march in the Civil War... not some alleged wacked out extremist environmental org burning 5 houses. Maybe it's just me...
This isn't ELFs first burnings. I would think if someone is in fear of loss, it is some degree of terrorism. I don't think we need to go to the extreme of Sherman's march. If one country is sending tanks and bulldozers over the border and leveling houses I see that as a form of terrorism, if the opposing group is strapping bombs to their bodies and blowing up busses and corner markets, I see that as terrorism.

As to cost, if the developer is forced to put a fence around the property, hire guards at night to watch it, has higher insurance premiums, or is paying a construction loan for a longer time all that costs...and then that cost is passed onto the the buyer of the McMansion and then his employees may not get the raises or holiday bonuses, or at a minimum have to deal with a grumpy employer, pissed that it will be 4 more months before he gets into his new home.

Screw the rich and it trickles down to the employee every time. Impose taxes or gov't regulations and they decide, heck with this, I don't need the hassle, auction off the equipment, sell the land, shut the factory down and send 3,000 people packing.
 
Screw the rich and it trickles down to the employee every time. Impose taxes or gov't regulations and they decide, heck with this, I don't need the hassle, auction off the equipment, sell the land, shut the factory down and send 3,000 people packing.

Wait.... *puts on Eddie Vedder - Setting forth.*

There we go... That's what we needed... *chills, smiles*
 
Screw the rich and it trickles down to the employee every time. Impose taxes or gov't regulations and they decide, heck with this, I don't need the hassle, auction off the equipment, sell the land, shut the factory down and send 3,000 people packing.

To be honest, wil, I think we need that. We need capitalism to collapse. It is unsustainable. Even the average middle class life is unsustainable and decadent. My own lifestyle is unsustainable, but I'm working on downsizing it as fast as I can.

We need the thing to collapse. Yeah, it will be a pain the butt and people won't like it, and people want their TV and their end of the year bonus and their new car and on and on... But in the meanwhile, you have a system that is exploiting the environment and the poorest people.

I, too, thought what Alex thought. Street of Dreams? Give me a break.

I don't advocate what the ELF (if they did, in fact, do it) did. I think it's the wrong tactic. But I also don't think we should play into the system and make the rich happy just because if we don't, Bob, Joe, and Fred won't get paid. As long as the American people are kept at a reasonable level of comfort (i.e., much higher than what is sustainable), they will stay in this space of being fearful of losing what they have, and so buy into the system- both as workers and as consumers. They will continue to mix government with capitalism. They will continue to expect the government to bail out personal and corporate greed and poor decision-making to preserve the "stability" of an inherently unsustainable and instable system, that is opposed to long-term environmental and social reality. They will continue to off-load their costs to other, poorer people and justify it because they are "giving someone a job." (Even as they rape and pillage the land and resources that once allowed those people to be self-sustaining.)

In short, we need people to get unhappy enough to revolt against a system that will lead us to our social and environmental destruction.

What we really need is for people to become more aware about their needs vs. their wants, and see capitalism for what it is and for the shell of a human being it makes people. But since few people seem to get to that space without first becoming disillusioned and unhappy, without loss...
 
It just so happens that this "Street of Dreams" arson coincides with the trial of another "ecoterrorist" that is going on in the area. It seems that there is a history of these arsons taking place during these trials.

{Make of that what you will--the lawyers on the defense have tried to use these synchronistic arsons as a means to plead dismissal of the trial on the grounds of the new arsons prejudicing the jury, and the prosecution doesn't need to say much at all.}

'Street of Dreams' fires coincide with UW ecoterror trial
 
To be honest, wil, I think we need that. We need capitalism to collapse. It is unsustainable. Even the average middle class life is unsustainable and decadent. My own lifestyle is unsustainable, but I'm working on downsizing it as fast as I can.

We need the thing to collapse. Yeah, it will be a pain the butt and people won't like it, and people want their TV and their end of the year bonus and their new car and on and on... But in the meanwhile, you have a system that is exploiting the environment and the poorest people.

...

In short, we need people to get unhappy enough to revolt against a system that will lead us to our social and environmental destruction.

What we really need is for people to become more aware about their needs vs. their wants, and see capitalism for what it is and for the shell of a human being it makes people. But since few people seem to get to that space without first becoming disillusioned and unhappy, without loss...

Fricken Amen to that.

Thoughts like this don't make someone a terrorist. Burning down houses might, but to me it is a matter of degree. Since when did property and paychecks trump human life in the terrorism department? That is what I was asking.

Also, comparing the arson of five uber-affluent houses to the systematic dismantlement of places for Palestinians to simply inhabit space, the compression of the physical space that thousands of people are supposed to inhabit, and the denial of basic human necessities is again a failure of assessing the degree of the tragedy, in my opinion.

But it does work both ways, and is complicated. Palestinians whose houses are bulldozed or otherwise destroyed, and who are continually persecuted, are likely to resort to desperate human explosions. Why not get it all over with anyhow and make a violent statement about the intolerable state of your life at the same time? Back in the home court, someone who can afford to put a cool two mil down on a palace on the "Street of Dreams" (so-called, seems more like a facelifted nightmare to me), most likely isn't going to go into a forest, strapped with bombs, looking for ELF bandits, then--target acquired--scream, "Take this, you violent hippies!!!" and push the big red button. Kerbloom??

Nah, I think path's point about insurance collection brings to mind a more fitting onomatopoeia: **Ka-ching!!**

;)
 
It just so happens that this "Street of Dreams" arson coincides with the trial of another "ecoterrorist" that is going on in the area. It seems that there is a history of these arsons taking place during these trials.

{Make of that what you will--the lawyers on the defense have tried to use these synchronistic arsons as a means to plead dismissal of the trial on the grounds of the new arsons prejudicing the jury, and the prosecution doesn't need to say much at all.}

'Street of Dreams' fires coincide with UW ecoterror trial

This is quite sinister. I would like to find out a lot more detail about all such supposed ELF activities and trial details. In two cases now the jury has been out deliberating a verdict. The piece does not make it known how long they have been deliberating, the 'quality' of the prosecution case v defence and the news piece itself seems biased toward the prosecution. I do not see that such an act to prejudice a jury would be a tactic of defence, certainly not twice. Either the ELF people are really very stupid or there is a concerted and malicious effort to brand environmentalists as dangerous. As yet I dont have enough info to tell which.

Tao
 
To be honest, wil, I think we need that. We need capitalism to collapse. It is unsustainable. Even the average middle class life is unsustainable and decadent. My own lifestyle is unsustainable, but I'm working on downsizing it as fast as I can.

We need the thing to collapse. Yeah, it will be a pain the butt and people won't like it, and people want their TV and their end of the year bonus and their new car and on and on... But in the meanwhile, you have a system that is exploiting the environment and the poorest people.

I, too, thought what Alex thought. Street of Dreams? Give me a break.

I don't advocate what the ELF (if they did, in fact, do it) did. I think it's the wrong tactic. But I also don't think we should play into the system and make the rich happy just because if we don't, Bob, Joe, and Fred won't get paid. As long as the American people are kept at a reasonable level of comfort (i.e., much higher than what is sustainable), they will stay in this space of being fearful of losing what they have, and so buy into the system- both as workers and as consumers. They will continue to mix government with capitalism. They will continue to expect the government to bail out personal and corporate greed and poor decision-making to preserve the "stability" of an inherently unsustainable and instable system, that is opposed to long-term environmental and social reality. They will continue to off-load their costs to other, poorer people and justify it because they are "giving someone a job." (Even as they rape and pillage the land and resources that once allowed those people to be self-sustaining.)

In short, we need people to get unhappy enough to revolt against a system that will lead us to our social and environmental destruction.

What we really need is for people to become more aware about their needs vs. their wants, and see capitalism for what it is and for the shell of a human being it makes people. But since few people seem to get to that space without first becoming disillusioned and unhappy, without loss...

Absolutely, but we must be smart about it. The withdrawl symptoms may include military intervention. Remember Pinochet? Yeltsin? these were people who tried to institute a brand of capitalism founded by the Chicago School, home of Milton Friedman. They found the only way to intitute and keep these ideas going regardless of what it was doing to the people and the environment was to "Shock" the people with military might.
As long as Americans are fat and happy they won't notice just how much this type of capitalism rules our country.
 
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