A groundswell of Native American activists has temporarily shut down construction on a new oil pipeline worth $3.8 billion that would carry about half a million barrels of crude oil per day from the Bakken oil field to Illinois, linking with other pipelines to transport the oil to Gulf Coast refineries and terminals.
Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirschmeier explained in a press conference that “construction of the Dakota Access pipeline south of Mandan [N.D.] has been stopped — for safety reasons.”
The protest occurred at a spot where the pipeline would pass beneath the Missouri River, just upstream from the Standing Rock Sioux reservation, a community of 8,500 situated on the Missouri River in North and South Dakota.
Now, North Dakota’s homeland security director has ordered the removal of state-owned trailers and water tanks from the Dakota Access Pipeline protest campsite Monday due to reports of unlawful activity, including the presence of pipe bombs and guns. Over the last week, 28 protesters were arrested, including Standing Rock Chairman Dave Archambault, who wants protesters to comply with the law.
“The position of our tribe is clear — There’s no place for threats, violence or criminal activity,” Arhcambault explained to reporters. “That is simply not our way.”
But Homeland Security Division Director Greg Wilz believes there is cause for concern. “Based on the scenario down there, we don’t believe that equipment is secure,” he said.
Tribal members from across the nation have streamed to the Standing Rock Sioux protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline, with thousands coming to the peaceful “prayer camps” in recent days, prompting state officials on Monday to remove the demonstrators’ drinking water supply.
Standing Rock spokesman Steven Sitting Bear hinted that the protest is only just beginning, as he’s received “notifications from tribes all over the country that have caravans in route, so it’s continuing to grow.”
And in Washington D.C., high-profile activists and supporters are rallying outside the U.S. District Court, where members of the Standing Rock Sioux will argue that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers granted Energy Transfer Corporation permission for the pipeline without tribal consent.
In July, the environmental group Earthjustice filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, seeking an injunction against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, who signed off on the pipeline’s construction. “The construction and operation of the pipeline, as authorized by the Corps, threatens the Tribe’s environmental and economic well-being, and would damage and destroy sites of great historic, religious, and cultural significance to the Tribe,” the lawsuit notes.
According to the tribe, the pipeline puts the sacred waters of the Missouri River at great risk.
The demonstrators held signs during a rally last Thursday in Bismarck that read, “No Dakota Access Pipeline” and “ReZpect our Water,” while they chanted, “We can’t drink oil. Keep it in the soil.”
Climate campaigner and 350.org co-founder Bill McKibben supports the protest, even penning an op-ed on Monday titled “After 525 years, it’s time to actually listen to Native Americans.”
He believes that in recent years, it has been Indigenous people like the Standing Rock Sioux who “have been the vanguard of the movement to slow down climate change.” He also implied that stopping the pipeline process would send a message that, after 525 years, someone actually paid attention to the good sense the Native Americans have had from the start.
He also said:
One has the ominous sense of grim history about to be reenacted at Standing Rock. North Dakota authorities—who are in essence a subsidiary of the fossil fuel industry—have insisted that the Sioux are violent, that they have “pipe bombs.” There are rumors about calling in the National Guard. The possibility for renewed tragedy is very real.
But the possibility for a new outcome is there as well. The Army Corps of Engineers might back off. The president might decide, as he did with Keystone, that this pipeline would “exacerbate” climate change and hence should be reviewed more carefully. We might, after five centuries, actually listen to the only people who’ve ever successfully inhabited this continent for the long term.
As for the U.S. District Court hearing on whether a preliminary injunction should be issued against the protesters, it has now been rescheduled from Thursday to Sept. 8, though a restraining order against the demonstrators has also been extended to that time.
From the Dakota Access Pipeline Resistance: (contact information in the link)
We, the Indigenous defenders of the land and water within the traditional treaty lands of the Oceti Sakowin, makean urgent appeal to the international community to assist us in facing a human rights crisis. Dakota Access is trying to put a crude oil pipeline under the Missouri River. This is a dire threat to the drinking water and future generations of the Oceti Sakowin who have lived here for generations.
For the past few days there has been unidentified air-craft circling the camp and we’ve been surrounded by federal and state police. We believe the elders, women and children present at this peaceful assembly could be under threat and in danger of imminent harm and possible violence from state and federal police (including Homeland Security) as well as private security. The Governor of North Dakota has issued a state of emergency and closed roads and restricted freedom of movement. We are unarmed. We do not have cell phone service or wifi. We are unable to communicate and document for the world community this peaceful assembly.
We are committed to peaceful defense of our water and our territory.
We urgently seek national and international human rights observers to come. We need United Nations’ rapporteurs, NGOs (especially Indigneous NGOs), and Churches, to be aware of the rapidly escalating dangers facing this peaceful gathering. Please come and bear witness.
Joseph White Eyes 605-230-0812
Michelle Cook 914-334-0888
Carolyn Raffensperger 515-450-2320
Elon Musk And Over 2400 AI Scientists Sign Pledge Against Killer Robots
- The Facts:
More than 2,400 AI scientists and researchers have signed a pledge which intends to deter military firms and nations from building lethal autonomous weapon systems (LAWS).
- Reflect On:
Are we as individuals, working together on shared concerns for all humans on the planet, starting to see the power we have to effect positive change?
It is not an uncommon story in the history of science and technology: the most brilliant and innovative minds of their time discover, create, and invent technologies that can have hugely positive benefits for mankind as a whole. Inevitably, the largest and wealthiest ‘consumer’ of such technologies is the Military-Industrial Complex, and the main ways these technologies are produced in our world are as tools of control, warfare, and human suffering.
In earlier times scientists and inventors didn’t have much say in how their work was used, and could often be persuaded that their use in military applications was actually for the benefit of humankind. Today, those naive days are gone, and the landscape is different. Some of the most prominent minds that are creating advanced technologies are starting to speak out more and more about how their work is being used in the world.
More Than 2400 Signatories
Elon Musk of SpaceX and Demis Hassabis at Google DeepMind are among more than 2,400 signatories to the pledge which intends to deter military firms and nations from building lethal autonomous weapon systems, also known as LAWS. The signatories are scientists who specialize in artificial intelligence, (AI) and have declared that they will not participate in the development or manufacture of robots that can identify and attack people without human oversight. The pledge was created by the Future of Life Institute:
LETHAL AUTONOMOUS WEAPONS PLEDGE
Artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to play an increasing role in military systems. There is an urgent opportunity and necessity for citizens, policymakers, and leaders to distinguish between acceptable and unacceptable uses of AI.
In this light, we the undersigned agree that the decision to take a human life should never be delegated to a machine. There is a moral component to this position, that we should not allow machines to make life-taking decisions for which others – or nobody – will be culpable. There is also a powerful pragmatic argument: lethal autonomous weapons, selecting and engaging targets without human intervention, would be dangerously destabilizing for every country and individual. Thousands of AI researchers agree that by removing the risk, attributability, and difficulty of taking human lives, lethal autonomous weapons could become powerful instruments of violence and oppression, especially when linked to surveillance and data systems. Moreover, lethal autonomous weapons have characteristics quite different from nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, and the unilateral actions of a single group could too easily spark an arms race that the international community lacks the technical tools and global governance systems to manage. Stigmatizing and preventing such an arms race should be a high priority for national and global security.
We, the undersigned, call upon governments and government leaders to create a future with strong international norms, regulations and laws against lethal autonomous weapons. These currently being absent, we opt to hold ourselves to a high standard: we will neither participate in nor support the development, manufacture, trade, or use of lethal autonomous weapons. We ask that technology companies and organizations, as well as leaders, policymakers, and other individuals, join us in this pledge.
The Power Of Public Shaming
The pledge hopes to amount to more than just words. In calling on countries to legislate laws, technology companies to not accept contracts, and individuals to voice their support against lethal autonomous weapons, they hope to sway public opinion overwhelmingly against LAWS, and in doing so shame any person or group who would go ahead with its development. There is some precedent for this approach working, according to Yoshua Bengio, an AI pioneer at the Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms:
This approach actually worked for land mines, thanks to international treaties and public shaming, even though major countries like the US did not sign the treaty banning landmines. American companies have stopped building landmines.
The timing of this pledge is crucial. The military is one of the largest funders and adopters of AI technology. With advanced computer systems, robots can fly missions over hostile terrain, navigate on the ground, and patrol under seas. More sophisticated weapon systems are in the pipeline. Toby Walsh, a professor of AI at the University of New South Wales in Sydney who signed the pledge, had this to say about it:
We need to make it the international norm that autonomous weapons are not acceptable. A human must always be in the loop.
We cannot stop a determined person from building autonomous weapons, just as we cannot stop a determined person from building a chemical weapon. But if we don’t want rogue states or terrorists to have easy access to autonomous weapons, we must ensure they are not sold openly by arms companies.
Collective Consciousness Rising
This pledge is but one example of how people are implicating themselves in the future of the planet. No longer are we waiting on the sidelines and leaving decisions up to corporations, the military, or our political leaders. When we identify ourselves not as a race, culture or nation but as a planet, where all of humankind is considered part of the family, then we get to have greater access to the power of our collective consciousness. Once we harness that power, no initiative that is for the benefit of humanity is beyond our abilities.
The Flying Humanoid Phenomena Of Mexico
- The Facts:
There have been multiple reports over the years of bizzare activity in the skies of Mexico. People have claimed to be seeing flying humanoids in the sky. Though not fully verified as to what onlookers have seen, it is clear what they believe.
- Reflect On:
Experiences & stories such as this bring us to the question most of us have heard before, 'Are we alone?' What is the true nature of our reality? More importantly, what could this mean for us as a collective, as humanity?
Throughout time in mainstream media and the entertainment industry we have been programmed to see beings outside of human as dangerous, and for the most part there is a good chunk of fear-based propaganda to remind us of the potential danger if we were to encounter a visit.
Though new films and shows have been coming forth with a different perspective & narrative and new space forces are being declared, it is interesting to question the why. Stories of otherworldly visitors have been spread for centuries, and it is time we closely examine them with an open mind.
In this specific instance, an officer driving his patrol car in Mexico has seen a dark shape that he verified was, in fact, a “flying humanoid entity” which he described looked like a floating old woman, dressed in all black with dark skin and eyes that were “just black sockets, without eyelids.”
This startling apparition then apparently flew over to hover right in front of the vehicle and the stunned occupant within. He could see it better at this time, and noted that it was a hideous old woman that “resembled a witch.” Apparently annoyed by the car’s high beams, the witch then reportedly covered her face with some sort of cloak and then flew right into the vehicle’s windshield, causing the dumbfounded officer to go speeding back in reverse. He would explain the terrifying events like this:
As soon as I realized it was a kind of woman being, or a witch, very strange standing there trying to cover her face, she threw herself against my car very fast, falling on the car and hitting the windshield. She was flying very fast and it took only a second to hit the windshield glass. I was so shocked by this action that I put the car in reverse and pushed the accelerator trying to get away while requesting backup assistance by radio.
It was a woman with big black eyes, everything was black, no eyelids. Her skin was dark brown and her expression was horrible. She was furiously trying to get me with her claws while I was running away in reverse calling desperately for backup assistance to any units around.
If you would like to read more about why humanity is seemingly ‘obsessed’ with the ET phenomena at this time, please read more here and watch our latest video to dive deeper into the subject matter.
There Is More Than One Type Of Intelligence
- The Facts:
The current model of schooling puts emphasis on one particular type of education, which only covers a small percentage of the population of children. It also educates children in batches, assuming they are all ready for the same thing.
- Reflect On:
Is it time to reevaluate this method of schooling to be more inclusive to children with all types of other intellect and creative ability? Is our education system even bringing out the full potential in our children?
What was your experience in school like? Did you hate it or love it? Were you an all ‘A’ student and found it to be a breeze or did you struggle with understanding some of the subjects you were being taught?
The fact of the matter is, our modern education system is not catering to students as individuals, but lumping them all into the same category and expecting them to succeed, even at things they are not particularly good at or even interested in, while those who got the highest test scores were praised and reminded of their perceived superiority and intelligence.
Because of this, many children experience anxiety around tests because they have been taught over and over again that their value is determined by a letter grade and not their creative abilities. If one child has an amazing skill to write poetry, but then fails a math exam, the latter will be the topic that is looked at and how this failure can be turned around. Often telling the child they need to pay attention more in class or study longer, even though this particular topic may not be where the child’s intelligence lies. This system is designed strictly for children to learn how to memorize and regurgitate what they have learned in the form of tests, not giving much leeway for other talents and abilities.
Our modern-day schooling system was designed to train children into becoming the perfect employee, to sit at a desk perhaps, or follow orders effectively for when they are old enough to enter the workforce. The hours, little time for play, taking instructions from a person with authority and unfortunately, leaving little room for exploring creative abilities. This system, in reality, only caters to a small percentage of people in the world, and because of this, we are effectively killing the creative potential that exists within all human beings.
The following video from Sustainable Human sums this up quite nicely.
As it says in the video, “How did we get to the point where we decided the best way to school our children is to sit them behind a desk and insist they keep still?”
Children are meant to play, to explore, to observe, to stumble, to be curious, to ask questions, to find answers, to learn from others and as they go. Sitting them in a desk seems far from natural, yet this is something that to this day we still accept as normal and see it as, ‘just the way it is.’ However, it hasn’t actually been that long that this has been our generally accepted method of schooling.
“If a kid is failing, it is not the kids fault, the fault is within the system.”
Let us not forget that there are MANY forms of intelligence and it’s time we embraced every single one. The schooling system as we know it, needs an overhaul.
Let’s get this discussion started over in the Collective Evolution Group on Facebook.
There Is More Than One Type Of Intelligence
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