« Scrooge, you | Main | Two can play at that game »

Fuck Paypal

By Michael J. Smith on Saturday December 4, 2010 11:30 PM

That image above shows St Dominic presiding over an auto-da-fe-- a public burning of heretics. This is a little unjust to Dominic himself, who never, as far as I know, did any such thing. (The insignificant victims are down in the lower-right-hand corner of the image.)

Paypal has joined the Inquisitorial campaign against Wikileaks. How far have we come, and in what direction, since Daniel Ellsberg gave the Pentagon papers to The New York Times, and the Times printed 'em? Ellsberg didn't get rounded up and extradited on laughable charges of Inconsiderate Sexual Activity, and nobody tried to shut down the New York Times.

Now, however, in the time of Good Emperor Obama I "Lightbringer", the land of the free and the home of the brave has put in place, with admirable dispatch, its own version of the Great Chinese Firewall. North American DNS, at least from where I sit, will no longer resolve the name wikileaks.ch. One of the numeric IP addresses I have ( appears to be no longer routable from an armchair in New York. Another ( ) appears to be live, but I wonder whether it's the real site, or a spoof. There are elements that don't quite add up.

Paypal has obviously heard from The Man, and has predictably caved in. I encourage everyone with a Paypal account to cancel it, as I have done with mine.

Oh yeah, I know, it's just a pinprick. But it will make you feel -- and rightly so -- like a better, cleaner, more honorable person. Think of it as saving what little you have for a better day. If you're not an utterly abject slave, then when the better day comes, you'll be that much more ready for it.

At the moment, we're scattered, disorganized, powerless. They can come with their guns and flak jackets and take over our server farms, or kick in our doors and confiscate our laptops, or whatever else they might be worried about that day. Our feelgood corporate false friends, like Paypal, will be right there to lend a loyal obedient hand.

But there are still, and will always be, more of us than there are of them.

Comments (55)


Oh yeah, I know, it's just a pinprick.

Blood is blood. I think they will eventually regret this. So will Amazon.

It is clear to see a market opening for services that don't cave to Uncle and have organized themselves accordingly. There are alternatives to Paypal.

Apart from his persecution, I imagine Assange is well-pleased with how things are playing out. Uncle is now busy with a costly, damaging, possibly endless war he did not choose and prosecuting it very ineptly. In just a few days the beacon of democracy has nakedly embraced Chinese-style speech control, while scandals about its bribes, murders and bullying blossom around the world.

This is all too good to be true.


This is all too good to be true.

Just to be clear, I meant that as hyperbole, not skepticism.


Here's a running list of mirrors.



Just out of curiosity, has anyone successfully downloaded any of the files at those mirrors? I have tried downloading the cablegate torrent but I keep getting an "invalid torrent" message regardless of the program used or which site I get the torrent from.


I haven't used Paypal since I learned that the founder is a staunch right-wing criminal.

No, wait, I have used it. Not much. Is that OK?

The problem with little acts of sort-of rebellion is that the gears and levers of our supersystem are so thoroughly in sync with the corporate ethos, we cannot escape. Little acts will forever remain little acts.

Mr. Assange, for all of his good works, had some sort of mystical vision of cleansing the world's political leaders' machinations through document leaking, which is absolutely no help to Bradley Manning at this point, and borrows heavily from Don Quixote, a book which no one should read or reference, since professorial types were permitted to de-list it from the assigned canon in our wonderful pedagogical liberation of the 60s.

Global movers and shakers will hug out their Wikileaks-announced spats. Why should we be concerned about their petty soap opera crushes and feuds? Wars and ecological destruction has already happened - it's not like their heads are going to roll.

For the record, I've bookmarked the URLs I listed in my post from a couple of days ago, and they're all still coming up OK from where I am.

Al Schumann:

mjosef, you have a point. Small acts of conscience on the atomized level are insufficient. They're effectively quixotic. The price for them is paid individually and the individuals are open to ridicule. The ridicule is certain and most of the time people will face it all alone. The recuperation from whatever minor harm they can manage will entrench and exacerbate the ills of the extant order. Though the acts of conscience cannot honestly be called causes of that, they will be. To make matters even more galling, any popular sensibility that arises from conscience will be exploited by parasitic social "entrepreneurs", e.g. Democrats.

Basically, it's the story of our lives. I take it on faith that enough people, poking and prying, will eventually find some way around it.

Searching twitter for #imwikileaks also comes up with a bunch of mirrors, FYI. gives me an overload message here in RI, and gave me one last night as well. My mother said she couldn't get anything to come up at all, though that might be her computer.

Huh, I just tried, and it routes to with no problem. Maybe try that?

Out of curiosity, what makes you suspicious of

Ugh, forgot the three links thing. I have a post in moderation, in the meantime though try

Oh, also, did you see that the Library of Congress has blocked Wikileaks? Now there's symbolism for you.


Outstanding first paragraph, Al - a keeper.

As for the last part, there is no need for "faith" of any kind, and the far more likely future is that we do not find a way "around it."
What in our benighted past and systemic present gives us that idea? If our governing institutions are rotting and becoming more hollow with each added grab for supremacy, what gives us the right to see utopia in the horizon?

We will soldier on, of course, and there are brighter days ahead for some, and perhaps even for us if we escape the bullets, but the Cause? The progress of the War for the Common Good? Doomed.

Al Schumann:

mjosef, thanks, I more or less agree with your second comment too.

Insofar as recommendations are worth a damn, I'd recommend that any acts of conscience be done with eyes wide open and a pretty good escape route planned. Martyrdom is for suckers.

I've also got some points of sort-of-maybe-not-quite disagreement. The rot of institutions is a constant and I suspect that would hold in utopia too. The appropriate music for the soldiering is therefore a dirge. In hopelessness, there's a comforting fecklessness and possibly an opportunity for a little safe looting. Loot wisely and share with your comrades, etc.

Al Schumann:

mjosef, you've got me thinking and I think there is a bright ray to be seen. Although it has its limits. The official (and officious!) overreaction to the wikileaking is going to be hard to undo. It's going to compromise internal communications. Hierarchies function poorly when functionaries are kept guessing and are forced to communicate in euphemism. Ass-covering requires everyone to be on the same page, more or less. Ambiguity favors the ambitious ratfuckers, who will ratfuck their colleagues in a heartbeat.

The top of the hierarchical food chain always has a hard time getting accurate information, even when it's not in hysterical mode. It frequently has to rely on forceful internal discipline. The more it has to do that, the less trust underlings will have.

Whether that works out beneficially, for the other 98%, is a matter of luck. It probably won't. But their autophagia may push a lot more people away from thoughtless servility.


was working 5 mins ago

reaction to inconsequential

has certainly helped make point

curly Q'd and truffled national security
state dies hard

someone once wrote about the roll of rumor
trying to close what can't be closed

Peter Ward:

I think spying and secrecy have more to do with superstition, paranoia and a belief in omniscience on the part of those how conduct it than obtain useful information. The value of the classified material itself is doubtful, whatever psychological need it fulfills.* As Greenwald points out most of what's leaked is uninteresting.

But on the good side, the hysterical, unrestrained totalitarian sentiments of the government's reaction could do some harm--by showing how our representatives actually view the public. And it will make them more paranoid, which could be self-destructive as well since their focus will be on committing more resources to the useless task of better safeguarding classified material less on activities that actually keep the mob at bay.

*It's also to keep the public from know what crimes the government is committing at our expense, of course. But even then most correspondence is choked with euphemism it's no more (or less) incriminating than what's made public. But there are exceptions, like Rumsfeld's torture memo.


Long list of working mirrors here.


It's very gratifying to see how many unintimidated people there are out there. Hosting a Wikileaks mirror is ballsy.

Everybody should download the "insurance" poison-pill, though -- I'm sure the snoops are tracking that, and it's a gesture you can make cost-free, unless you pay your ISP by the bit.

Do it now, before they shut down Pirate Bay:



All of the mirror sites display the Wikileaks page, but for the Cablegate stuff, none of the links lead to a working torrent file. The download link at the bottom of the page gives you a broken torrent, and all other links go to a nonsense site. Can't find anything on Pirate Bay or Binsearch. If anyone has a link to a working torrent or NZB for "Cablegate: 250,000 US Embassy Diplomatic Cables," I'd appreciate it.

Fascinating decisiveness and dispatch from the MOY-2008. Compare and contrast with the recent cave-in on net neutrality.

This clown has to be rated in the negative numbers, on a strict zero-to-ten scale.

Where's Carl Davidson's protest, btw?


Reasons to be cheerful. Hackers brought down Paypal with an attack that started at 7:00 GMT. It's 7:47 GMT now.

Milton Marx:

Typical SMBIVA auto-erotic nonsense: Voting bad...but canceling PayPal good! Wow, that'll show 'em.

Here's the ultimate problem with you elitist SMBIVA morons: If voting is so futile, why does Corporate Power spend billions to try to influence the outcome of elections? Any thought in your minds that maybe, just maybe, Power fears voters, or unfavorable (to their interests) outcomes of elections?

Eh, whatever, go cancel your PayPal accounts...

Milton Marx:

Julian is a real genius, by the way. No wonder you SMBIVAns love the guy. He can dump docs forever for all I care, no problem there, but I heard him interviewed and he said his intention is to alter US policy and public opinion. ROTFL!!

Julian is like 0 for fucking 10 in that dept. The guy broadcast a goddamn massacre, complete with "light 'em up" audio and....tumbleweeds, crickets chirping.

He's the perfect SMBIVA hero: Totally out of touch, and as totally self-involved.

Al Schumann:

Milton, that's a good question. Corporate power needs legitimacy and obedience. Electoral politics is a cheap way to get it. The investment is puny compared to the returns.


Milton MMarx-Friedman, why are you answering your own questions? You, brilliant neo-con scourge that you pretend to be (MJS just drumming up business, perhaps) implied that "Power fears" this or that. You described this as the "ultimate problem" with SMBIVA, so this must, must be answered, but what was your problem again?
Okay, granting your point, so Power fears voters, and does very well to keep them stupefied and in line with the raging idiocy that you so proudly genuflect to. So what? Isn't that an SMBIVA point, granting a few eccentric takes on the subject matter here? Power fears, Power takes, power corrupts - where's the beef? As you say, neither Wikileaks or Chris Hedges or the sainted remains of your beloved Milton Friedman is any threat to the current status of Power.
Is there something "moronic" about pointing that out? On what evidence do you claim to be more "in touch"?

Milton Marx:


Would you feel differently if the electorate voted differently? What if --- OK, indulge me for a moment --- the US electorate, through the ballot box, demanded more lavish social benefits? Voted against imperial wars? I mean really fucking voted against them? Like, voted the way MJS says to vote in his pledge?

Mjosef seems to read into my mother-given first name that I am some sort of neo-con or follower of that fraud in Chicago. I am not. I want greater social justice. I just want to use all of the tools at our disposal, including that right to vote which, yes, people did die for during the civil rights movement. (Were they just dupes?)


as totally self-involved.

And by that we know you mean principled, determined, independent, self-sacrificing and morally consistentl.

So funny that you idiots see narcissism everywhere, when you're not worshipping our humble public servants Obummer and the Clintons.

Why is that? And who cares if he's an egotist anyway? I don't think he is, but why is it even relevant?

But right, the war didn't end when Collateral Murder played, y'know, the way it did when you voted. Leaking is stupid.

MJS just drumming up business, perhaps
No, no, though thanks for the compliment. I couldn't write MM's lines nearly so convincingly -- there'd be some irresistible ironic nod to the audience that would spoil the whole effect. Or maybe MM has them too, and they're just less heavy-handed than anything I would do. Either way, he's a treasure.

Note to MM: If you think for a moment, you might see that SMBIVA is not against all voting under all conditions. It is a protest -- a strike, if you will -- against THESE conditions, which render voting meaningless. And nobody here has reached this point lightly or quickly.

WMWICVA is another way of putting it.

I like to think that the people who died bringing universal suffrage to the USA did not die to bequeath their heirs this market-totalitarian farce.


... Hit "return" a little too soon there. I wanted to add that I'm a little puzzled that Milton apparently thinks I'm being inconsistent. In fact my recommendation about Paypal is just what it is about the Democratic Party -- namely, boycott 'em both.

Perhaps it's time to say a word, yet again, about the original mission of this site. It was not set up to articulate a comprehensive political philosophy, or to make converts to any particular denomination of Leftianity. The hope was much more modest -- it was just to wean a few people away from their debilitating addiction to the Democratic Party, and free up the energies thus self-defeatingly expended for some more constructive, or at least more pleasurable, project.

Speaking of pleasure -- what's the matter with auto-eroticism? One has often asked this question, and never received a satisfactory response. That hair-on-your-palms thing is a myth, believe me.


OK, MM, no more Friedman associations that I had imagined with your first name.
You are a fighter for social justice. You want to vote, to have all believers in social justice vote, honoring those brave martyrs who give their lives during that titanic epoch of getting the vote, and then losing relative wealth along with it.
Yet there is no one to vote for. There is no Cause, no lever or gear in the supersystem that is not coated with the grease of corrupt commerce. The elections are corporate gimmicks, suffused with technocratic criminality, from the bundled Home Depot donations to the greenwashing liberal Dermokrats "reluctantly" funding our latest imperial fictions.
So yes, yes, we must surely vote, must knock on doors for Edwards or McKinney or some church-going pietist with a navel-ring wearing wife. Look what it brings us - all the Huffington Post micro-essays, direct to our bulging mailbox.

Milton Marx:

>>>And by that we know you mean principled, determined, independent, self-sacrificing and morally consistentl.

Pat yourself on the back a little more, 'dog. Why stop there? Why not add, "self-congratulatory, self-satisfied" to your self-kudos? And substitute "preening" for "consistent."

Oh, how you bring back fond memories of the Naderistas who strutted about like peacocks, showcasing how they were "voting their conscience." Felt soooo good didn't it? Their blessed consciences helped elect You Know Who.

But I know...no difference between Bush and Gore. None at all. Conscience is clear.

Milton Marx:

>>>during that titanic epoch of getting the vote, and then losing relative wealth along with it.

Are you implying that A caused B?

MJS: You were actually fine there ending at 4:40pm with what a treasure I am. The follow-up comments were an unnecessary encore to a performance that had finished on a brilliant flourish.


fond memories of the Naderistas

i s'pose that was inevitable but kudos to me for sniffing out which crime syndicate Miltie speaks for.

I have to differ on Milton being a gem. He's just a robotic troll and he's briefly made a robot of me (which is what they do). I'm switching him off.

Al Schumann:

Milton, on occasion the electorate has voted strongly and positively for public works of real benefit. It happens fairly often on a local level. When it does, I take it as proof of something I hold dear: that social reality and subsidiarity can harmonize with individual worth.

Alas, the further one looks up the food chain, the less of that there is; until you reach the top echelons, where you find its antithesis. That's where you find the real hatred for America. I'm happy to say I've never gotten over it, and never will.

Milton Marx:

Fair points, Al, but what protects subsidiarity and individual worth from the onslaught of the corporate beast, if not some government behemoth that can block or counteract the beast?

I am not suggesting that our current national govt serves that function. That would be delusional. But to follow SMBIVA, and to turn to subsidiarity, is essentially to formally and completely give the entire national playing field over to the beast. You're basically saying, "I'm unprotected. Come and get me." That this is an effective alternative is its own delusion.


I must have mentioned this before on the blog, but maybe it's OK to repeat. I spent some time years ago studying dead languages in Ireland, which speaks one, and a good friend of mine there once gave me some excellent advice, in connection with an obstreperous colleague of ours: "Nivir wrrresthle with a pig. Yez both get dirrrthy, but the pig enjoys it."

Milton Marx:

MJS: More self-flattery from the self-proclaimed pure. The preening never ends. I suspect you're too old for this, unless The People's Republic of Oberlin now offers adult education.

As if life's entire purpose is not to dirrrthy yourself.

Oink, oink.


I should give ol' Miltie the last word here, but he did ask one question of me. Before that, I would like to defend the fellow: he is not a troll, and a pig is not an epithet in my book: they are far cleaner in their ways than us, are much better to their babies. His points about Chavez/oil and Assange/"reforming" the US elite have not been refuted hereabouts.
Did A(the civil rights struggle) cause B(the present state of apartheid America)? No. However, if B exists despite the claims made during A that B would not exist, what does this say about A? The relative wealth of black America is one-ninth that of white America. Black and Hispanics will tonight in America go to sleep as the unemployed or the incarcerated in predominate numbers compared to white America. So getting the vote has meant certifying the mastery of the elite even further. There should not be the pretense that "democracy" will cure social injustice when "democracy" becomes the master getting the mob to do his bidding, through criminal think tanks, criminal judges, criminal polling businesses, criminal media, the whole absurd gang that brings us, now, John Boehner.
We need you here, though - don't disappear like the last lone gunslinger, van Mingo - or are you him?

Mjosef, I agree that MM is a real contributor and has interesting and genuine thoughts. But let's not grant MM too much.

Chavez and oil? I believe MM's point was fie on all heedless oil-dependent power wielders. That gun shoots backwards more than forward, and, by the way, wtf is Chavez supposed to do, conjure perfect anarchy/communism/green nirvana with a wave of his hand?

flamewar with MM: tl;dr

cancelling Paypal: done

Milton Marx:

"when "democracy" becomes the master getting the mob to do his bidding, through criminal think tanks, criminal judges, criminal polling businesses, criminal media, the whole absurd gang that brings us, now, John Boehner."

Somewhere, sometime, somehow, the voter (and non-voter) has to be held to account. Not ahead of the crooks and plutocrats, but somewhere, somehow in the mix.

It's not like there's this deeply felt but somehow supressed desire for social democracy across the land. I wish there were, and do whatever I can in my pitiful little ways to change that. Nor do we have an informed citizenry, even though information, and access to it, is ample.

As for MJS: When he's not advertising his misogyny (it's rich to be called a pig by his likes), he's snarking, trashing teachers, or simply name-calling. Whatever. He's got "issues," mostly with the other gender.

Al strikes me as a decent sort, and I learn a lot from his posts and comments. I just sincerely believe his socialism of the neighborhood is a Sesame Street fantasy that would get crushed by multinational Corporate Power, which needs to be balanced by the countervailing forces of progressive national govt and robust unions.

SMBIVA is the luxury of the well-off, or reasonably well-off, whom are unaffected day-to-day by policies.

Al Schumann:

Milton, I need to skip back up thread for a bit to address one of your earlier comments.

Regulatory capture and the corporate beast go hand in hand. If the good people of—call it Leninville—create something worth exploiting, it will be taken from them. There's rarely any protection when the beast wants something badly enough. The fracking in PA and upstate NY constitute an ongoing proof. People are getting hurt. Their federal and state representatives are happy to make noises in behalf of the afflicted, but they're not going call a halt to it.

I have no reason to believe anything I do will affect that. My ambition with SMBIVA, and I always keep in mind that I may be wasting my time, is to reach people much lower down the food chain. A resistance to the beast requires a rejection of, and hostility towards, the very effective systemic, antisocial demobilizers. One of which is is getting otherwise sensible people "dirty".

In any con game, the con artist relies the mark's identification with his purpose. The mark (marks) has (have) to be socially isolated. The easiest way is to get him (them) to do something morally and/or legally reprehensible. An act against the interests of family, friends, neighbors, colleagues, etc. will do that. Living with that is tough, on your own. In company, with enough equally dirty people, it becomes pedestrian; just one of those things that everyone wishes could be different.

Skool Marm:

whom are unaffected day-to-day by policies. ???

Them is, that's whom!

Al Schumann:

A vote is essentially symbolic, but it nevertheless has significance to the individual and the community. A vote that contributes to, how about NAFTA, is lending a hand to immiseration. People who make dreadful mistakes usually try to make things right. But they won't if everyone they know is equally dirty and morally convinced that it had to be done, lest something much worse take place.


"The countervailing forces of progressive national government and robust unions..."

96/100ths of what comes out of the soft mouths of would be "progressives" is left-over pabulum from those fictional and bullshitting years of the 60s.

Have 40 years not taught these new retreads that the US government is a broken-down whore in perpetual service to those multinational corporations? You expect it now to sleep with you, for free, and recite Proust?

How can anyone in this age say the absurd pairing of "robust" with "unions"? The unions are dead, and what is left are "public-sector unions," which do not deserve the term since they have no unity, no solidarity, staffed with anxious apparatchiks ready to fink on the young co-worker to keep a job and keep the management/citizenry ogres away.

By this logic, we will solve our energy conundrum by harnessing the static electricity from riding our sparkleponies.

MD - oil money is still oil money, no matter how green it gets washed - ask the people near the oil refineries how the ghost of Bolivar is doing. I'd still vote for Chavez in a heartbeat over any other American politician, but come on, enough Third-World valorization.

Milton Marx:

The past 40 years have taught me a lot, mjosef. If there's a burgeoning, or even clandestine/under-the-radar, lefty, class-based movement out there in the USA that I don't know about, clamoring for social democracy or perhaps even something more leftward, please point me in its direction. Or send a link. Or something.

And I mean a real working-class movement, not lefty mailing lists populated by merit babies.



Is this psy-ops? Didn't Assange provide for a warning shot before thermo-nuclear war?

If there's a burgeoning, or even clandestine/under-the-radar, lefty, class-based movement out there in the USA that I don't know about...please point me in its direction.


Al Schumann:

If there were a burgeoning, or even clandestine/under-the-radar, lefty, class-based movement out there in the USA, I would do my best to make sure it stayed under the radar. All the ones that draw attention get swamped by liberals. Happens every time. The poor things can't help themselves, or anyone else, but they're very good at destroying movements. That's how "Gitlin" became a verb.


Wow, Milt, mostly I'm stumped as to why you would even ask that question, here. I'm sure that Google and the DoD and the CFR and various union-busting law firms and the Department of Homeland Security and hundred or so think tanks and a gaggle of foundations and many, many tenured faculty and the liberal punditocracy and Glenn Beck and Chuck Norris could answer that better for you.
However, as acting provisional high chipmunk of the Atheist Nihilist Authentic Working Class (Empathy -Only) Real Burgeoning Non-Affiliated Typists League, Merit-Class Dropout Irregulars Division, I'm not at liberty to give out numbers. But we're definitely burgeoning.

Milton Marx:

Mjosef: Further proof that paranoia and grandiosity usually go hand in hand. I wasn't taking names. Al's post is a more germane reply than your delusional rant, and Alansmithee's is actually pretty funny. Lighten up, m-jo. No one wants your #. No one is threatened enough by you to bother with it.


Let me adjust my tinfoil - you mean a gen-u-wine revolutionary radical like moi isn't causing palpitations and fluctuations in the halls 'o power? How are the Meinhof chicks going to dig me if there arent't black helicopters and unmarked vans and strange noises following me?
Smithee and Al S. were pithy. I was making a joke, but only because I am grandiose, but not delusional. Got that, coppers? Thanks for the certification that the coast is clear, though.
No need for the lighten-up instructions, - just good old fashioned comments section humor here.

Dipshit pwoggie bloggies like Miltie don't do humor. That's why no one wants the ugly demotard stinking up the meeting hall.

Post a comment

Note also that comments with three or more links may be held for "moderation" -- a strange term to apply to the ghost in this blog's machine. Seems to be a hard-coded limitation of the blog software, unfortunately.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on Saturday December 4, 2010 11:30 PM.

The previous post in this blog was Scrooge, you.

The next post in this blog is Two can play at that game.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

Creative Commons License

This weblog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
Powered by
Movable Type 3.31