Lessons learned from Phil Ochs

I wrote this a while back. Today is Phil’s Birthday. Happy Birthday Phil Ochs and thank you for all you and continue to do for us through your music.

cyndi lenz

Lessons learned from Phil Ochs

guitar

I really never knew that much about Phil Ochs. I knew his voice that’s for sure. It is  so distinct which makes watching his story even harder. Harder but compelling. I watched this documentary and  could not stop thinking about it and all the important lessons we could learn from him I decided to watch it again a few weeks later.

There But For the Fortune
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/episodes/phil-ochs-there-but-for-fortune/watch-the-full-documentary/1962/

Also available on netflix

I try to watch as least one doc a week.  I start off telling myself that I’m working on craft and production style but its when I get sucked up into the story is when I knows its good. When I forget about angles, the footage  and just want more.
It’s all about the story. It’s always about the story. It’s all about THIS story.

Phil never even knew what folk music was until…

View original post 1,161 more words

Fear and loathing in america

Last week I lost some friends because I simply asked them to wait out an investigation. They said no.

It actually started  when the Syrian Refugees crisis was prevailing on the news. Real friends that I know were all happy that Rick Scott was saying there would be no Syrian refugees here even though he has no right to say so and we have been settling them quietly in the state through the good work our churches. People who despise Rick Scott all of a sudden without understanding how things work would not show not one iota of kindness because somehow they thought that there was a terrorist next to them hiding under their bed.

At first I thought it was just like they felt that we have enough problems of our own (and we do) but then they went on and on about how they could be terrorists. Even 5 year children.

1211trudeausyrianr

I realized  most people have no idea what is going on because it is very confusing. I could not believe that so many people were so uncaring. People who claim to care about all kinds of issues  just didn’t care. To them  these people were not humans.

Sort of like how the Jewish People were treated during WW2. Boats turned away. People being killed. Children drowning. I  take Xenophobia personally because after all we (the jewish people) came from the same hood. To me xenophobia today is just an extension of antisemitism.

So I wrote this.

Xenophobia, Syrian refugees,US Governors , Nothing beats human kindness. nothing

I don’t understand how people can be so enclosed  in their own cocoons that they have no feelings for the others in the human race just because their  last name is different.

I’m pretty sure that most people don’t even know that out by Lake O is a wonderful community of middle easterners that have been there for years.

http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/1988-02-24/news/8801120233_1_palestinian-neighbors-palestinian-community-west-bank

Then I wrote this:

Our Brand is Crisis:Syrian refugees , Florida, Presidential Candidates

It explains the programs and how they work and how people are vetted.

Then this happened.

San Bernardino shooting

I was sitting here charting. My first reaction was who walks into a center for the developmentally disabled and shoots people? Of course there are lots of answers to that question. It could be some parent who upset with the treatment of their child.

We all sat here waiting for the identification of the shooters. Please don’t let them be:

white christian males

black

middle eastern

my relative

anyone I know

The twitterverse was filled with people waiting for a last name. Even Anne Coulter was sitting and waiting.

Of course if it was some white young male the local news would say something like “I refuse to speak the name of the shooter.” but it wasn’t so all bets were off.

In Facebook land there were lots of theories. People were just waiting and as soon as the name hit the airways Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik that was it!

ISIS had arrived in America.

The news media took that and performed their usual feeding frenzy. People hiding under their beds is great for business.

The GOP took this and their intention is to scare you even more.

This take the focus off of what we need in America and puts the focus on war. What happens: The Rich war machine people get richer. You give up more of your rights all in the name of being cowards. Nothing get’s done. All everyone does is fight with each other. What a mess.

America has turned into a bunch of

scaredy cats.

scadcats

Our friend over at Eye on Miami wrote this great post.

http://eyeonmiami.blogspot.com/2015/12/keep-us-safe-republicans-please-keep-us.html

“The heartbreak of Sandy Hook: Adam Lanza shot 20 children and 6 adults dead. Mentally ill kid with a gun. Columbine High School in Jefferson City 12 more school kids dead and one teacher. The executioner was a student. Oklahoma City another home grown terrorist killed 168 people. Aurora, a nut job named James Holmes killed 12 at a movie theater.”

sandy hook

the gorgeous faces of the children killed at Sandy hook

 

They call the San Bernadino killers “Lone Wolves” and make a big deal out them. A lot is coming out about things they had planned in past. Doesn’t mean they are sponsored by ISIS or anyone else.

Now we totally can’t have female refugees because one of them might be a terrorist.

ter·ror·ism

noun
noun: terrorism
  1. the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.

People are radicalized and indoctrinated in many ways. Religion. Ideologies. We all believe strongly.We all have our causes. But we don’t go around shooting people in the names of causes.

The APA has done a great job researching terrorism.

Ask Siri and go do some reading.

Google APA terrorism

I was fortunate enough to hear some of this stuff at a conference in Guatemala while representing the documentary “Interrogate this! Psychologists take on Terror.”

kleinman-galvin-production-stil

Filmmaker Maryanne Galvin interviews Steven M. Kleinman, Strategist & Consultant on National Security, Senior Military Intelligence Officer. San Francisco, August 2007. Photo: Cyndi Lenz (me behind the camera and probably the most interesting interview I ever shot)

Let me repeat. Mr Kleinman is a senior military intelligence officer.

Here is the trailer to “The Little Terrorist” a fabulous short film that is featured in Interrogate This.

You can see the whole movie here. It’s only 16 minutes long. It’s quite lovely.

Start here

excerpts

“Given these complexities, the psychology of terrorism is marked more by theory and opinion than by good science, researchers admit. But a number of psychologists are starting to put together reliable data. They’re finding it is generally more useful to view terrorism in terms of political and group dynamics and processes than individual ones, and that universal psychological principles—such as our subconscious fear of death and our desire for meaning and personal significance—may help to explain some aspects of terrorist actions and our reactions to them.

In fact, the notion that terrorists could be talked out of committing violence using peaceful dialogue and a helping hand is no longer an idealist’s pipe dream, but actually the aim of a growing number of “de-radicalization” programs worldwide, says social psychologist Arie Kruglanski, PhD, co-director of the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, or START, one of several university-based Centers of Excellence established under the Homeland Security Act of 2002.

“While there is still a big need to assess these programs,” says Kruglanski, who is studying some of these programs, “in some cases, there appear to be some authentic successes.”

The lure of terror

For years, psychologists examined terrorists’ individual characteristics, mining for clues that could explain their willingness to engage in violence. While researchers now agree that most terrorists are not “pathological” in any traditional sense, several important insights have been gleaned though interviews with some 60 former terrorists conducted by psychologist John Horgan, PhD, who directs the Pennsylvania State University’s International Center for the Study of Terrorism.

Horgan found that people who are more open to terrorist recruitment and radicalization tend to:

  • Feel angry, alienated or disenfranchised.
  • Believe that their current political involvement does not give them the power to effect real change.
  • Identify with perceived victims of the social injustice they are fighting.
  • Feel the need to take action rather than just talking about the problem.
  • Believe that engaging in violence against the state is not immoral.
  • Have friends or family sympathetic to the cause.
  • Believe that joining a movement offers social and psychological rewards such as adventure, camaraderie and a heightened sense of identity.

(Does this sound familiar at all?)

Beyond the individual characteristics of terrorists, Horgan has learned that it’s more fruitful to investigate how people change as a result of terrorist involvement than to simply ask why they enter in the first place. That’s because asking why tends to yield pat, ideological responses, while asking how reveals important information about the processes of entry, involvement and leaving organizations, he has found. Potential areas to tap include examining the myriad ways people join organizations, whether via recruitment or personal decision; how leaders influence people’s decision to adopt certain roles, for example by glorifying the role of suicide bomber; and factors that motivate people to leave.

Some psychologists believe terrorism is most accurately viewed through a political lens. Psychologist Clark McCauley, PhD, a co-investigator at START and director of the Solomon Asch Center for Study of Ethnopolitical Conflict at Bryn Mawr College, has come to see terrorism as “the warfare of the weak”—the means by which groups that lack material or political power fight what they see as oppressive forces. As such, he believes that terrorist actions and government reactions to them represent a dynamic interplay, with the moves of one group influencing those of the other. As one example, if terrorists commit an attack and a state uses extreme force to send a punishing message back, the terrorists may use that action to drum up greater anti-state sentiment among citizens, lending justification to their next actions. Yet research focuses almost solely on terrorist actions and neglects the important other side of the equation, he contends. “If you can’t keep track of what we’re doing in response, how can you ever hope to figure out what works better or worse?” McCauley says.

Studying de-radicalization

In the real world, psychologists also are exploring the effectiveness of initiatives taking place in countries including Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and the United Kingdom that are seeking to soften the hearts and minds of terrorist detainees. In preliminary research, Kruglanski and colleagues note that many of these programs share:

  • An intellectual component, often involving moderate Muslim clerics who hold dialogues with imprisoned detainees about the Qu’ran’s true teachings on violence and jihad.
  • An emotional component that defuses detainees’ anger and frustration by showing authentic concern for their families, through means such as funding their children’s education or offering professional training for their wives. This aspect also capitalizes on the fact that detainees are weary from their lifestyles and imprisonment.
  • A social component that addresses the reality that detainees often re-enter societies that may rekindle their radical beliefs. A program in Indonesia, for instance, uses former militants who are now law-abiding citizens to convince former terrorists that violence against civilians compromises the image of Islam.

Some of these efforts have already shown promise, says Kruglanski. For example, Egypt’s largest radical Islamic group, Al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya, renounced bloodshed in 2003, the result of a deal brokered by a Muslim attorney between the group and the Egyptian government, and a program where Muslim scholars debated with imprisoned group leaders about the true meaning of Islam. As a result, the leaders wrote 25 volumes arguing for nonviolence, and the group has perpetrated no new terrorist acts since, Kruglanski says. A second major Egyptian group, Al Jihad, renounced violence in 2007 based on a similar program.

Five other such initiatives in Northern Ireland, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Colombia are being studied by Pennsylvania State University’s Horgan. His not-yet-published research proposes a framework that policymakers can use to evaluate these programs, including examining how each effort conceptualizes and measures success, and evaluating the reality and practical significance of these success claims.

Given his own experience talking with former terrorists, Horgan is cautious about how much to expect from these programs. In his recent study, he discovered that some of these efforts not only lack clear criteria for establishing what constitutes “success,” but also that actual de-radicalization is rarely a feature of such programs—that former terrorists may rejoin society and keep from engaging in terrorist actions, but retain their radical beliefs.

So we have big brains that are working on this.

Why isn’t anyone reading this stuff?

Why? Because people would rather not educate themselves and go hide their bed and be terrorized by CNN or Fox News being intimidated in the pursuit of political aims. Now that’s terrorism.

 

On the snout: Nestle stealing our water again

on the snout

On the snout: Nestle stealing our water again.

New bottler shouldn’t get OK to tap aquifer article by Lauren Ritchie

“The request is for more water than the controversial Niagara Bottling plant pumped when it first opened in Groveland. Are you surprised? You shouldn’t be.

Florida’s water-management districts can’t say no to anyone. Despite a sloppy application, chances are high that Spring Water Resources of Ocala — doesn’t the clever name sound like it’s a group doing good? — will be getting permission to pump 181 million gallons a year.

The company’s plan is to withdraw water from 10 acres just south of County Road 470 and east of U.S. Highway 301 in Sumter County. Some 144 tanker trucks a day would take the raw water to the Azure Bottling plant in Leesburg, owned by a Fruitland Park couple.

There, plans call for bottling the water and selling it to five retailers, including Niagara Bottling and Nestlé Water, according to a business plan filed with the Southwest Florida Water Management District.

The proposal is to drill a 10-inch well near Fern Spring, but don’t worry — the application swears that tests show the pumping won’t hurt the spring at all. Never mind that engineers at the water district have never even heard of the process the water company’s consultant used to determine the spring is safe.”

We can’t afford to have our water sucked dry.

Watch this clip from Flow: For the love of water about nestle

Your Florida Government at work protecting big business and stealing yet another resource from its citizens.

Lessons learned from Phil Ochs

Lessons learned from Phil Ochs

guitar

I really never knew that much about Phil Ochs. I knew his voice that’s for sure. It is  so distinct which makes watching his story even harder. Harder but compelling. I watched this documentary and  could not stop thinking about it and all the important lessons we could learn from him I decided to watch it again a few weeks later.

There But For the Fortune
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/episodes/phil-ochs-there-but-for-fortune/watch-the-full-documentary/1962/

Also available on netflix

I try to watch as least one doc a week.  I start off telling myself that I’m working on craft and production style but its when I get sucked up into the story is when I knows its good. When I forget about angles, the footage  and just want more.
It’s all about the story. It’s always about the story. It’s all about THIS story.

Phil never even knew what folk music was until he went to college and his roommate introduced him to “left wing music.” He was brought up with movies. John Wayne.  He strove to be the “hero” and Sean Pean said “perhaps even the hero in his own movie.

1. Lesson number one. Be the hero in your own movie.
This is not so easy. We tell people to do this  and then when they do it we say “Who do you think you are being the hero in your own movie?”

Phil quits college and goes to NY and says “I’m going to be the best songwriter in the country. He goes to the village. He met his  girlfriend/ wife and Dylan would come over for dinner.

The backdrop of Phil’s life was the 60’s. For a folksinger there was plenty of material. He went to the south to work on civil rights. He would turn down commercial jobs for a benefit because it would reach more people. He would never turn  down a cause he believed in.

He sincerely believed that people should be treated equally.
He worked hard and got a contract with Electra Records.
In 1963 he was Newport Folk Festival performer of the year.

Phil’s father came back from the war and was so manic he had to be hospitalized.  The family was not close.
Phil played the clarinet and escaped by going to the movies.

“I aint marching anymore.”  became the anthem of the antiwar movement

He  got involved in the theater of the absurd and a protests called “the war is over!”

lesson number 2
intention is everything

“you can create your own reality when you become children of the media”

changes

Probably one of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard.

Lesson number 3
always have a plan b

Phil’s life was parallel to 60’s movement and he took  personally the killing of JFK, Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King.

But how he could not? How could you not write these incredibly intricate songs and not feel what was going on personally?

Phil was one of the people that started the Yippie Party so there could be an united front against the war. Phil liked the spirit and the theater.
During the democratic convention Mayor Daily issued shoot to kill orders and there were no permits issued.
Non of the rock and roll stars would go but Phil went to commit himself to the first amendment.
Phil was inside singing at an event that was permitted.
But it was at the main unpermitted event that that someone spontaneously lit their draft card. Then everyone lit up their draft cards. Then police and dogs were unleashed with a green light from the justice department.

It just happened. It was random. No one planned it ahead of time. One of the most organic meaningful symbols of the time. It just happened.

Lesson number 4: Sometimes we need to let things happen organically.

You can’t plan these things. The best things come out of well intentioned people with pure hearts that allow their movement to be organic. That’s where the magic happens. In some crazy space between the soul and spinning towards the  moon.

Richard Nixon was elected.

Phil started drinking day and night. It was really hard for him to understand that he could not make the changes he thought he could. So he drank.
Then Kent State happen.

There was a lot of frustration. The movement became more militant. There were more bombings. The weather underground.

lesson number 5
There is never any reason to hurt another human being or commit a crime. When you feel this way what your feeling is frustration. Civil disobedience is founded in frustration.  We have to learn how to deal with the frustration and move forward.

Phil shows up in a gold lame suit at Carnegie Hall.

Then he stopped writing “My subconscious wasn’t feeding me the material.” He said.

He was depressed and drinking. The highs would get higher and the lows would get lower.

Then he decided to see the world and “wash America out of his system.” He went off. He  found hotels , a good meal and the best bordellos. According to his traveling partner he had no regard for his personal safety.

He went with Jerry Rubin to Chile. He got meet Victor Harra who was the “Pete Seager” of Chile and they became great friends.

Phil decides to go to Africa  to record there so he can write the trip off. He recorded one of the first world music albums. He went for a walk and was jumped and when he woke up they bent his vocal cords and his voice was never the same after this.

He was devastated that he lost his voice and he thought it was done by the CIA. He came back to the US and  had a bad accident while drinking heavily.

and then on on Sept 12 , 19 73   there was a military coup in Chile  and the US  was involved.  The CIA was involved. It put Pinochet in power. The army put Victor Harra in a soccer stadium and they beat his hands up and walked over to the stands and told him “Lets sing a song for el commedante !” it was too much for the colonials and Victor Jara  was murdered along with all the poets and the writers.

The poem was written on a piece of paper that was hidden inside the shoe of a friend. The poem was never named, but is commonly known as “Estadio Chile“.

“There are five thousand of us here
in this small part of the city.
We are five thousand.
I wonder how many we are in all
in the cities and in the whole country?

How hard it is to sing
when I must sing of horror.
Horror which I am living,
horror which I am dying.
To see myself among so much
and so many moments of infinity
in which silence and screams
are the end of my song.

Víctor Jara, “Estadio Chile”
(translated from Spanish)”

Phil lost his mind and he did a benefit for the Chilean refugees. Arlo Gurthie, Pete Seager supported him.  He even talked Bob Dylan into doing this. It was sold out!

This event opened up peoples eyes to what was going on in South America.

It was a great event for everyone and for Phil because it brought him back into what he did best.  organizing.

Nixon resigned.

The war was over and Phil became really depressed
Lesson number 6 : Don’t put all your eggs in one basket

in 1975 he spiraled out of control. He was totally psychotic.
He kept on drinking. He felt worthless. He felt humiliated.
He went to his sisters and he wouldn’t leave the house.

His friend came and got him and took him out to montauk

Then he  hung himself.
He was 35.

Today is Dec 19th 2016. Today the electors will be voting for Donald Trump. Today is Phil’s birthday.  Happy Birthday Phil where ever you are. You live on through you music.

WordPress Writing 101: Che and Orange is the New Black

#writing101

#wordpress

#che

#oitnb

So my assignment ( and this will get me caught up) is to be inspired by something social media. It was suggested that you go to twitter and search “quotes.” When I did that I got two accounts that I follow.

This is one.

https://twitter.com/CheQuotess

After watching Flow and learning about Bolivia and other countries it certainly is the truth.

When your a kid and a revolutionary of sorts, at least in your mind “Che” is a very romantic figure.” Then you grow up and your realize his life and the way his chose to live came at a great price. I have a hard time reconciling the doctor who took care of people with leprosy and the person who  became a murderer in the name of freedom. Maybe you had to be there.

I could write for hours on Che. I’ve seen multiple documentaries and read a bunch of books. I think I keep looking for that moment where everything changed.  The sentinel moment. The objective remained the same but the tactics changed.

che

I looked at the photo a thousand times.

che2

Its a symbol. But of what? I think no matter what he dedicated his life to helping the poor. Also, like many people who have good intentions narcissism gets in the way.  I do love the film I have seen of his time in NY with everyone throwing themselves at him and his speach at the UN. What would the world be like if Che were alive today? What kind of man, husband, grandfather would he be in the world of the 24 hour news cycle and social media? How would we treat him?

I named one of my lacie ruggeds after him but really didn’t give him much thought for a long time. Then I watched “The Motorcycle Diaries.” This movie is so exquisite. Here is the trailer. You must see if you haven’t.

You can read about him on Wikapedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che_Guevara

Here is some audio of his famous trip to NYC to talk to the UN.

As we know Che was killed in Bolivia with the help of the CIA.

I love all his goodness. Deplore the blood, death and violence.

The other page that came up in my search was:

OITNB Quotes

https://twitter.com/orangeistheneww

So this is the other way around. Here we have jailed woman who are in for all kinds of violent acts and we get to watch the microcosm of humanity that goes on in Litchfield Prison. Sometimes funny. Sometimes sad. Always meaningful.

If I could meet one television writer it would be Jenji Kohan.

Some people didn’t like this past season. I loved it. It was subtle and we really got to know the backstories.

I’m going back to re watch but my favorite story line was the kosher meals and how Black Cindy decided to become a Jew.

When I was younger and flew with my parents they would always order the kosher meal. “It was better.” They said.

So in order to save the prison when it becomes privatized the first thing they do is supply food from boxes. It was truly gross. I couldn’t even look. One of prisoners decided to order a kosher meal so she was getting a half way decent meal and then some of the others caught on and the power’s that be noticed an increase in the quantity of kosher dinner’s being consumed and because they couldn’t deny it they hired a Rabbi to come in and flush out the fakers.

In the end Black Cindy converted to Judaism but she couldn’t finish it off because there was no micveh.

or was there?

OK so my name is also Cyndi and my Hebrew name is Tova so I totally related. But there something about Black Cindy’s joy that me admire this character and her journey.

You can see for yourself.

The best part is when she says.” And if you do something wrong its your job to figure it out. As far as G-d is concerned its your job to keeping asking questions , to keep learning, and to keep arguing. It’s like a verb. YOU DO G-D.”

That’s what hit me. That’s I was taught to do. Ask questions, keep learning and keep arguing.

It’s part of me and who I am and who I always will be: A total pain in the rear end!

Documentary Review: Flow: For the Love of Water

Documentary Review: Flow: For the Love of Water

flow

It took me a few weeks to watch this movie. I turned it on. I turned it off. Every time I turned it on I had to look something up and I would get so involved in what I was reading I would run out of time.

I wrote this after I was inspired by what I saw about the people of Bolivia.

https://cyndi-lenz.com/2015/07/27/water-inc-the-water-story-of-bolivia-aqua-para-todos/

Very informative and very inspiring. You realize WE are all in this together and it’s so important to remain hyper vigilant when it comes to our water.

Here is the New York Times Review.

The War Between Public Health and Private Interests

“A documentary and a three-alarm warning, “Flow” dives into our planet’s most essential resource — and third-largest industry — to find pollution, scarcity, human suffering and corporate profit. And that’s just in the United States.

Yet Irena Salina’s astonishingly wide-ranging film is less depressing than galvanizing, an informed and heartfelt examination of the tug of war between public health and private interests. From the dubious quality of our tap water (possibly laced with rocket fuel) to the terrifyingly unpoliced contents of bottled brands (one company pumped from the vicinity of a Superfund site), the movie ruthlessly dismantles our assumptions about water safety and government oversight.

Still reeling, we’re given a distressing glimpse of regions embroiled in bitter battles against privatization. In South Africa, villagers drink from stagnant ponds, unable to pay for the water that once was free, and protesters in Bolivia — where waste from a slaughterhouse is dumped into Lake Titicaca — brave gunfire to demand unrestricted access to potable water.”

There was one funny bit by Penn and Teller.

This is about the Nestle Issue in Michigan. Nestle is everywhere. They are here in Florida and they now own my beloved Poland Springs Water.

Not only stealing the water that doesn’t belong to them but causing people’s wells to go dry. Pumping during a drought.

Remember it’s Nestle’s CEO that believes that water is not a human right and should be privatized.

Nestle CEO: Water Is Not A Human Right, Should Be Privatized

According to the former CEO and now Chairman of the largest food product manufacturer in the world, corporations should own every drop of water on the planet — and you’re not getting any unless you pay up.

The company notorious for sending out hordes of ‘internet warriors’ to defend the company and its actions online in comments and message boards (perhaps we’ll find some below) even takes a firm stance behind Monsanto’s GMOs and their ‘proven safety’. In fact, the former Nestle CEO actually says that his idea of water privatization is very similar to Monsanto’s GMOs. In a video interview, Nestle Chairman Peter Brabeck-Letmathe states that there has never been ‘one illness’ ever caused from the consumption of GMOs.

 This is why I’m keeping my well. Your all invited to come get your water here.

What I learned from “Flow” is that there are some magnificent people in the world and we truly are in this together.
This is article 31
Everyone has the right to clean and accessible water, adequate for the health and well-being of the individual and family, and no one shall be deprived of such access or quality of water due to individual economic circumstance.
Say it with me!

Aqua Para Todos

Water is Life

H2 Worker Documentary. Legal Slavery.

H2 Worker Documentary. Legal Slavery.

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Here is your music!

To everyone running for President:

Tonight I watched this incredible documentary by Stephanie Black.

Before they had harvesting machines every year people 10,000 Caribbean men were  selectivity chosen by American sugar corporations to harvest sugar cane for six months in Florida under temporary “H2” visas.
They came from Jamaica in the middle of the night and put in barracks in Belle Glade.

“If we didn’t have the Jamaicans it wouldn’t get harvested because the local people wouldn’t do it.” One of the sugar field managers said. They were essential jailed. Brought from the barrack to the bus to the field to bus to the barrack and not being allowed to leave.
They got paid one dollar and few cents pr hour.

This was released in 1990.

Even before the Duke and Duchess of Windsor (Who used to hang out in Indiantown) sent workers from their Islands in the Bahamas.

“H-2 Worker is a controversial expose of the travesty of justice that takes place around the shores of Florida’s Lake Okeechobee—a situation which, until the film’s release, has been one of America’s best-kept secrets. There, for six months a year, over 10,000 men from Jamaica and other Caribbean islands perform the brutal task of cutting sugar cane by hand-a job so dangerous and low-paying that Americans refuse to do it.

H-2 Worker is the first documentary to tell the story of these men—named for their special temporary guestwork “H-2” visas. They live and work in conditions reminiscent of the days of slavery on sugar plantations: housed in overcrowded barracks, poorly fed, denied adequate treatment for their frequent on-the-job injuries, paid less than minimum wage, and deported if they do not do exactly as they are told.

The sugar plantations who employ the H-2 workers sustain this exploitation—and their own profits—with the help of the U.S. government, which authorizes the importation of Third World workers while it blocks the importation of cheaper Third World sugar through a system of quotas and price supports, citing “national security” as the reason for its costly subsidizing of a domestic sugar industry. The scandal of the H-2 program has existed for over 45 years. It began in 1942, when the U.S. Sugar Cane Corporation was indicted for conspiracy to enslave black American workers. In 1943 the first West Indian cane cutters were brought in. This scandal has largely been kept out of the public eye, and the sugar companies and their government supporters have escaped accountability. On the contrary, a new immigration law has paved the way for a rapid expansion of the H-2 program.

Directed by: Stephanie Black
Produced by: Stephanie Black
Released: 1990
Running Time: 70 min

For more information about this film and other films in the Collective Eyes Catalog, please visit: collectiveeye.org/products/h2-worker

AWARDS:

Grand Jury Prize Best Documentary – Sundance Film Festival (1990)
Best Cinematography, Sundance Film Festival (1990)
Quotes

“‘H-2 Worker’ is that rare hybrid that succeeds as both film and advocacy. The documentary’s look and form is smooth and sophisticated … [and] it solidly frames issues about the economy, employment and the treatment of workers who seem just steps away from slavery.” —The New York Times
With admirable fluency, Black combines straightforward information and analysis with more evocative glimpses of the workers’ lives …. Black and her collaborators have an unsentimental conviction that these workers are fully human, that they experience not just anger and suffering but also love and pleasure – and even hope.”—The Nation”

Today when you go to Belle Glade you drive past the same buildings that were in this film.

Slave Barracks.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H-2_Worker

“H-2 Worker is a 1990 documentary film about the exploitation of Jamaican guest workers in Florida‘s sugar cane industry. It was directed by Stephanie Black, and won the Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize for documentaries in the 1990 festival.[1] It was shot in Belle Glade, Clewiston, and Okeelanta, Florida as well as Jamaica and includes cane fields and worker camps (Ritta Village, Prewitt Village) owned by US Sugar Corporation and the Okeelanta Corporation.

The cane harvesters were brought in to perform the autumn harvest of sugar cane under the H-2A Visa program. The Jamaicans replaced earlier generations of Bahamian seasonal workers who in turn replaced migrant labor recruited from the Cotton Belt (region) in the first half of the 20th century. A documentary short that accompanies the DVD version of the film states that human labor was abandoned for mechanical harvesters in 1992.

The film features interviews with a United States Department of Labor official, a Florida Sugar Cane League official, Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley, local merchants, and a dozen or so field workers. It also includes footage of César Chávez, US Representative Thomas Downey, and US Senator Bill Bradley.”

I think it’s important for “us” ( and you know who I’m referring to) to watch this so we never get soft against the people who created these human rights abuses for corporate profit. Not only do they treat people like slaves they collect corporate welfare.

( Are we calling them corporate entitlements yet?)

It’s also important for those of you that think all these people are coming and taking your jobs away. The reason they have, yes I said have this program is to to the work no one else would do. Interesting enough when I worked in Boca in the hospital we got nurses from England and from the Philippines and there were plenty of nurses around to do the job.  It’s been here since the 40’s. So even at your work you may have H2 workers or even the hospital you go to when your ill.

They may even be hiding your bed.
http://www.uscis.gov/working-united-states/temporary-workers/h-2a-agricultural-workers/h-2a-temporary-agricultural-workers

H-2A Temporary Agricultural WorkersThe H-2A program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. A U.S. employer,a U.S. agent as described in the regulations,or an association of U.S. agricultural producers named as a joint employer must file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, on a prospective worker’s behalf.

Who May Qualify for H-2A Classification?

To qualify for H-2A nonimmigrant classification, the petitioner must:

  • Offer a job that is of a temporary or seasonal nature.
  • Demonstrate that there are not sufficient U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the temporary work.
  • Show that the employment of H-2A workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers.
  • Generally, submit with the H-2A petition, a single valid temporary labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor.  (A limited exception to this requirement exists in certain “emergent circumstances.”  See e.g., 8 CFR 214.2(h)(5)(x) for specific details.)

H-2A Program Process

  • Step 1: Petitioner submits temporary labor certification application to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).  Prior to requesting H-2A classification from USCIS, the petitioner must apply for and receive a temporary labor certification for H-2A workers with DOL. For further information regarding the temporary labor certification requirements and process, see the Foreign Labor Certification, Department of Labor page.
  • Step 2:  Petitioner submits Form I-129 to USCIS.  After receiving a temporary labor certification for H-2A employment from DOL, the employer should file Form I-129 with USCIS. With limited exceptions, the original temporary labor certification must be submitted as initial evidence with Form I-129.  (See the instructions to Form I-129 for additional filing requirements.)
  • Step 3: Prospective workers outside the United States apply for visa and/or admission.  After USCIS approves Form I-129, prospective H-2A workers who are outside the United States must:
    •  Apply for an H-2A visa with the U.S. Department of State (DOS) at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad, then seek admission to the United States with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at a U.S. port of entry; or
    • Directly seek admission to the United States in H-2A classification with CBP at a U.S. port of entry, if a worker does not require a visa.

You can order it thru amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/video/detail/B003PLC5PY?ie=UTF8&*Version*=1&*entries*=0

I got mine from Netflix.

Here is another review.

http://www.reggaeplanet.com/p/h2-worker/

“H-2 Worker is the first documentary to tell the story of these men – named for their special temporary guestwork “H-2” visas. They live and work in conditions reminiscent of the days of slavery on sugar plantations: housed in overcrowded barracks, poorly fed, denied adequate treatment for their frequent on-the-job injuries, paid less than minimum wage, and deported if they do not do exactly as they are told.
The sugar plantations who employ the H-2 workers sustain this exploitation – and their own profits – with the help of the U.S. government, which authorizes the importation of Third World workers while it blocks the importation of cheaper Third World sugar through a system of quotas and price supports, citing “national security” as the reason for its costly subsidizing of a domestic sugar industry.
The scandal of the H-2 program has existed for over 45 years. It began in 1942, when the U.S. Sugar Cane Corporation was indicted for conspiracy to enslave black American workers. In 1943 the first West Indian cane cutters were brought in. This scandal has largely been kept out of the public eye, and the sugar companies and their government supporters have escaped accountability. On the contrary, a new immigration law has paved the way for a rapid expansion of the H-2 program to other agricultural industries.
H-2 Worker was shot clandestinely in the cane fields and workers’ barracks around Belle Glade, Florida. It contains footage shot in places where no media has been successful in filming before, and where the filmmakers were denied permission to enter by the sugar corporations and the local police.
H-2 Worker focuses on the lives of the workers themselves – travelling with them to the fields, where they endure long hours of monotonous labor; to their isolated barracks; to the town where they shop for American goods to bring home to their families. Following them through one six-month season, it tell their stories: Like migrant workers worldwide, these men are driven by soaring unemployment in their home countries and promises of high wages abroad. Dreaming of American opportunities to build better lives for their families, they arrive in the U.S. with high hopes – only to confront the harsh realities of the Florida cane fields.
Providing an in-depth analysis, H-2 Worker includes voices from all sides of the issue: representatives of the sugar companies and the U.S. Department of Labor, as well as U.S.l congressmen and Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley. An historical analysis combine archival footage with the testimony of 80-year-old Samuel Manston, who escaped the cane fields at the time of the peonage indictments in 1942.
But the voices of the workers themselves are foremost: They are heard through extensive interviews, and through their recordings of actual letters to and from their families in Jamaica. These voices tell an eloquent story which rings with painful truth, and will not easily be forgotten. H-2 Worker is both a compelling expose of institutionalized injustice, and a moving record of human endurance.
H-2 Worker, a 70-minute, 16 mm, color documentary made over the course of 3 1/2 years, combines the talents of director/producer Stephanie Black, award-winning editor John Mullen and cinematographer Maryse Alberti. It is a film with powerful impact and resonance, certain to be both compelling and controversial.
“‘H-2 Worker’ is that rare hybrid that succeeds as both film and advocacy. The documentary’s look and form is smooth and sophisticated … [and] it solidly frames issues about the economy, employment, and the treatment of workers who seem just steps away from slavery.” -The New York Times
“‘H-2 Worker’ is a revealing look at these men and the treatment they receive on our shores … [Stephanie Black] manages to capture the scope as well as the intensity of the problem. -New York Newsday
“With admirable fluency, Black combines straightforward information and analysis with more evocative glimpses of the workers’ lives …. Black and her collaborators have an unsentimental conviction that these workers are fully human, that they experience not just anger and suffering but also love and pleasure – and even hope.” -The Nation”

According to the update 1992, a class action suit found five sugar cane companies guilty of cheating more than 10,000 cane cutters of their contractually guaranteed minimum wage during the  two seasons documented in the film.

51,000.000 in back pay was awarded.
Then the decision was revered by the Florida Appellate court finding that the H-2 contract was “ambiguous.”

Sugar cane is being harvested mechanically however the number of H-2 workers has substantially increased.

North Carolina: 10,000 workers
Colorado 2,000 workers
Maryland 9,622 (crab houses, fire work, hotel work)
Most of the workers come from Mexico.
In March 2008, over 100 guest workers from India, walked off their H-2B jobs at Signal, an oil rig construction company in Louisiana, protesting the company’s unacceptable living and working conditions.
These are not illegals. These are people that come here legally.

In the country where the people are coming from there are labor brokers that sell assess to the people from all these countries. In India that access was sold for 20,000 dollars.
People come here and they are not paid what they are told plus they had to pay the recruiters.

Over 2,100 H-2 shepherds from Peru, Chile, Mexico and Nepal work for American Ranchers. They are expected to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for a minim monthly wage of less that 1,000.

If you think it’s just farm workers you’re wrong.

http://allnurses.com/international-nursing/h2b-visa-338815.html

“That visa is also not valid for nurses and is grounds to get one deported from the US. We see it being advertised in the Philippines but it makes one subject to immigration fraud. It is for untrained workers for a very specific length of time, and nurses do not meet those requirements from the start. We see this being used for the LPN, and there are no legal visas for them to enter the US and work here.

Please forward a copy of any of the garbage that you see offering this, and that is exactly what it is, to the US Embassy there in Manila. You would be sold as a slave to the highest bidder

They would also have you giving false information to the US Embassy officials and this is grounds for deportation for up to ten years after a stay in immigration detention before you are deported. You would be placed in a nursing home to work and they are undergoing frequent raids exactly for this.

Save yourself from having nightmares about being picked up by ICE.”

http://allnurses.com/international-nursing/h2b-visa-338815.html

Businesses continue to lobby for an expanded guest worker program with reduced wages and less government oversight. The violations are rampart.

No one talks about this. They talk about fences. The very people who push the hatred of the illegal people that come here use the H-2 workers as slave labor.

We’re being duped. Our attention is being diverted.
Pay attention.
We still have slaves in America. We call them H-2 workers.