‘Portraits of the New Chattel Slavery: WSJ Artist Exposes How the Other 20th Lives’

This month a brilliant artist at The Wall Street Journal has broken new ground in the flourishing investigative journalism market by going where cameras could not. You can click here to see these images in their original context, alongside a breathtaking column by Laura Saunders. Witness the pain of these Americans’ faces, as the fruits of their brow sweat are ripped away by the useless, degenerate masses and their fanatical, usurper ringleader.

'Retired couple' - Tim Foley, WSJ
‘Retired couple’ – Tim Foley, WSJ

First in Tim Foley’s slideshow of unbridled pain is a retired couple, who is just breaking even as socialist fascists have taken over their country. Social Security income is capped at roughly $40,000 annually for each of them — presuming each of them made only a meager $120,000 per annum since the age of 18 — and so in order to get by on $180,000 with their deductions in investment income in tow, their aging bodies will have to scrap together $23,000 this year. And what incentive do they have to even do that in the Nancy Pelosi/Barack Hussein Obama II economy? In the crossed arms of the man — whom we will call “Carlton” — and “Carlton’s” world-weary stare, we see a bold entrepreneur degraded into being a simple welfare slave on the Democrat retirement plantation. He has just told his partner in Christ they will face the belt-tightening prospect of having to switch from Perrier to the utter swill San Pellegrino. We can see from his lean that the heat of South Carolina’s merciless golf courses have caused spinal degeneration. His wife has a raised eyebrow, characteristic of these stark sketches of the toil and misery of 21st century America. We can sense she knows that “Carlton’s” days to be numbered. And without his brave, beating heart, the Social Security Administration will be cutting off a hefty $40,000 a year.

Married couple, four children - Tim Foley, WSJ
‘Married couple, four children’ – Tim Foley, WSJ

Mr. Foley’s next portrait of insurmountable anguish shows a nuclear family taxed nearly $22,000 more in 2013 by a society thankless for the parents’ willingness to put up with each other after 40. Clinging like a Ritalin addiction to the father’s body is two of the children, the one in front of him cowering into his shoulder, staring upwards at a towering, dream-crushing IRS. At $650,000 a year, these surely above-average children face a dark future, one in which they may have to take on some degree of debt for every single one of them to attend Kenyon, Amherst, or some other liberal arts institution that may by and large be bought into. The married, upstanding professional “businessess” faces forward more than her righteous husband to symbolize how liberals have electorally plotted to divide his Godly household. She like “Carlton’s” wife raises a single eyebrow. But the pre-menopausal woman’s eyebrow raises as if to say: “Should I really have to pay this much more this year to stave off my de facto execution for having to carry an ectopic pregnancy?”

'Single person' - Tim Foley, WSJ
‘Single person’ – Tim Foley, WSJ

‘Single person’ features yet another pearl-clad responsibility-ite, her face tilted slightly to her left in cynicism, her hair diligently parted, her arms crossed in indignation. As yet unbruised by years of toil and her holy, as yet unfulfilled, duty of childbirth, one eyebrow is not raised more than another, as with the retired woman and married mother. She still possesses the idealism of youth, and so is surprised to see our newly totalitarian government demanding so much of her, three years out of Wharton. She has purchased fine pearls to attract a suitable mate. She uses a watch, despite its being old-fashioned; checking her smartphone’s email app every five minutes to look out for any possible, more lucrative opportunities from one of her firm’s ruthlessly job-creating competitors. But now that she will be paying so much more on her taxes in 2013, what’s the point? she says to herself. Any more income will just mean moving into a higher tax bracket. And this is the way that in the New World Order’s America, a job creator is effectively murdered in public by a raging lynch mob. The mob, she understands well, is just jealous of the superior productivity genes that the American Enterprise Institute’s own Charles Murray has proven with science her to have.

'Single parent, two children' - Tim Foley, WSJ
‘Single parent, two children’ – Tim Foley, WSJ

The most heartbreaking of Mr. Foley’s portraits is that of the ‘Single parent,’ a subject with whom The Wall Street Journal’s editorials have famously long sympathized. The subscriber can immediately derive additional sympathy because her children look sufficiently alike to allay any suspicion that she might be single by a decadent choice. In the foreground, we see that she must console her child about her peasant family’s additional 2013 tax liability of just over $3,000. She places a loving hand over his shoulder, as she has probably just told him that — upon hearing the results of the treasonous fiscal-cliff congressional package — they will not be able to purchase for him a Hanson Robotics “Zeno.” The boy has his mother’s job-creator genes, but he knows with this year’s inability to afford that multithousand-dollar toy, his hopes of becoming an undergraduate in MIT’s robotics labs may very well be crushed. As with any of the parents or married people in this sketch essay, in his signature Foley-ian style, the woman’s eyebrow is raised at a new, decadent culture so willing to punish any American unworthy of the very gutter. This final, masterful sketch is the single greatest representation of economic repression since (original, lesser) Depression documentarian Dorothea Lange’s “Migrant Mother,” below.

In the Shadows of Tim Foley: 'Migrant Mother' - Dorothea Lange
In the Shadows of Tim Foley: ‘Migrant Mother’ – Dorothea Lange

Aaron Swartz was Murdered

Aaron Swartz killed himself after the sudden realization he was a "macfag."
Murderers of Aaron Swartz tried to disguise his death as a suicide.

NEW YORK — After reports of Aaron Swartz’s apparent suicide circulated around the Internet this weekend, investigators found evidence of foul play. A former architect of Reddit, the online forum scandalized earlier this year by child pornography and “creepshots,” Aaron Swartz was widely known for his contributions to anti-copyright activism after stealing millions of files from MIT.

Hackers from Anonymous released a statement on Sunday, “Heavy-handed prosecutors raped the beautiful mind of Aaron Swartz. He later ‘killed himself.’ Are the draconian copyright laws selectively applied to those who threaten the inertia of entrenched power? Certainly. Will they use their sockpuppets and judicial torture system to make YOU kill yourself too? Of course. Will they kill you if you go too far?”

Chronicle Reporters also questioned Julian Assange, sick from months of exile in the Ecuadorean embassy, about the death of Aaron Swartz. “I am not convinced that Aaron Swartz was such a coward he committed suicide due to fear of prison,” said Mr. Assange. “Read his words, and decide for yourself, but I believe Swartz was murdered by a team of copyright assassins who made it all look like a simple suicide. Watch what you say, or you may end up like Aaron Swartz.”

Swartz gave a talk in 2008, mentioning his intention to ” download scientific journals and upload them to file sharing networks.”

Information is power. But like all power, there are those who want to keep it for themselves. The world’s entire scientific and cultural heritage, published over centuries in books and journals, is increasingly being digitized and locked up by a handful of private corporations. Want to read the papers featuring the most famous results of the sciences? You’ll need to send enormous amounts to publishers like Reed Elsevier.

There are those struggling to change this. The Open Access Movement has fought valiantly to ensure that scientists do not sign their copyrights away but instead ensure their work is published on the Internet, under terms that allow anyone to access it. But even under the best scenarios, their work will only apply to things published in the future. Everything up until now will have been lost.

That is too high a price to pay. Forcing academics to pay money to read the work of their colleagues? Scanning entire libraries but only allowing the folks at Google to read them? Providing scientific articles to those at elite universities in the First World, but not to children in the Global South? It’s outrageous and unacceptable.

“I agree,” many say, “but what can we do? The companies hold the copyrights, they make enormous amounts of money by charging for access, and it’s perfectly legal — there’s nothing we can do to stop them.” But there is something we can, something that’s already being done: we can fight back.

Those with access to these resources — students, librarians, scientists — you have been given a privilege. You get to feed at this banquet of knowledge while the rest of the world is locked out. But you need not — indeed, morally, you cannot — keep this privilege for yourselves. You have a duty to share it with the world. And you have: trading passwords with colleagues, filling download requests for friends.

Meanwhile, those who have been locked out are not standing idly by. You have been sneaking through holes and climbing over fences, liberating the information locked up by the publishers and sharing them with your friends.

But all of this action goes on in the dark, hidden underground. It’s called stealing or piracy, as if sharing a wealth of knowledge were the moral equivalent of plundering a ship and murdering its crew. But sharing isn’t immoral — it’s a moral imperative. Only those blinded by greed would refuse to let a friend make a copy.

Large corporations, of course, are blinded by greed. The laws under which they operate require it — their shareholders would revolt at anything less. And the politicians they have bought off back them, passing laws giving them the exclusive power to decide who can make copies.

There is no justice in following unjust laws. It’s time to come into the light and, in the grand tradition of civil disobedience, declare our opposition to this private theft of public culture.

We need to take information, wherever it is stored, make our copies and share them with the world. We need to take stuff that’s out of copyright and add it to the archive. We need to buy secret databases and put them on the Web. We need to download scientific journals and upload them to file sharing networks. We need to fight for Guerilla Open Access.

With enough of us, around the world, we’ll not just send a strong message opposing the privatization of knowledge — we’ll make it a thing of the past. Will you join us?

Aaron Swartz
July 2008, Eremo, Italy