Thursday, November 11, 2010

Remembrance Day 2010: Harper extends Afghan stay with 'reluctance' vs. "How Did Canada Agree To War Until February 2009?"




Ed note - This just popped up on Yahoo Canada's main page, it's a real kick in the Canuck-sack on Remembrance Day 2010 while Prime Minister Stephen "Sieg Heil!" Harper is at another Korean G20 meeting preaching "global economic cooperation" or "globalization" centralizing power in the hands of a few central banksters forever. His koncept of "enlightened sovereignty" means destroying Canadian sovereignty forever. Sh-tty.

Juxtapose that with a clip of Toronto 9/11 Truth outside the old CityTV/MuchMusic building, including yours truly at the 1.38 minute mark saying: "How did Canada agree to war until February 2009? It's September 2007! I'm a Canadian! I didn't agree to fight in Afghanistan until February 2009! I don't want to see our kids soaked in depleted uranium until February 2009! None of us agreed to a year and a half of war!"

While it's still true, the only question now is to figure out what to do about it. Since the kids (and young and old adults) are being trained to think their "Call of Duty" is "Black Ops", or things like drug-running, renditions and death squads, we should probably stop this whole "endless war on terror" thingy soon. 9/11 Truth is still the key, even if our chemical and cultural conditioning makes it seem impolite to mention.

Should we be nice to veterans and not-nice to new soldiers?

Was it a mistake to not talk about the war then and now?

Should the "war" be an issue for decent Canadians?

What's clear is that we know enuff by now...

So enuff is enuff is enuff is enuff...

Should be enuff anyways...


Stephen Harper _ I know some people don't like it. It is a loss of national sovereignty


Harper extends Afghan stay with 'reluctance'

Module body

53 minutes ago

By The Canadian Press

SEOUL, South Korea - Prime Minister Stephen Harper says he decided with some "reluctance" to reconsider his decision to pull Canadian troops out of Afghanistan next year.

Speaking on the sidelines of meetings of the G20 leaders, Harper said he told his NATO allies in no uncertain terms that Canada's combat role is coming to an end.

But he said he sees merit in the argument that Afghan troops aren't ready to stand on their own, and Canada could help in their training.

"I do this with some reluctance but I think this is the best decision, when one looks at the options," he said.

"Look, I'm not going to kid you. Down deep my preference would be, would have been to see a complete end to the military mission."

Until now, Harper has insisted that Canadians will withdraw by July 2011. But NATO countries have been lobbying for months to persuade Harper to change his mind.

Harper said Thursday he did not succumb to pressure, but decided to reconsider based on the fact that the Afghans aren't ready for Canada to leave.

"I don't want to risk the gains that Canadian soldiers have fought for and have sacrificed in such significant numbers by pulling out too early, if we can avoid that."

Harper acknowledged he has been under pressure by NATO allies to continue in a combat role, but a training role was the most he could agree to.

Sources have told The Canadian Press the government is considering sending 600 to 1,000 soldiers to Kabul until 2014 to bolster NATO training efforts.

"I think if we can continue a smaller mission that involves just training, I think frankly that presents minimal risks to Canada, but it helps us to ensure the gains that we've made," Harper said.

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Black Krishna Speaks - Toronto 9/11 Truth - 2007


Depleted Uranium - The Ultimate Dirty Bomb


Depleted Uranium - Far Worse Than 9/11

Depleted Uranium Dust - Public Health Disaster For The People Of Iraq and Afghanistan

Doug Westerman | Global Research | May 3, 2006

... As a special advisor to the World Health Organization, the United Nations, and the Iraqi Ministry of Health, Dr. Ahmad Hardan has documented the effects of DU in Iraq between 1991 and 2002.

"American forces admit to using over 300 tons of DU weapons in 1991. The actual figure is closer to 800. This has caused a health crisis that has affected almost a third of a million people. As if that was not enough, America went on and used 200 tons more in Bagdad alone during the recent invasion.

I don"t know about other parts of Iraq, it will take me years to document that.

"In Basra, it took us two years to obtain conclusive proof of what DU does, but we now know what to look for and the results are terrifying."

By far the most devastating effect is on unborn children. Nothing can prepare anyone for the sight of hundreds of preserved fetuses " scarcely human in appearance. Iraq is now seeing babies with terribly foreshortened limbs, with their intestines outside their bodies, with huge bulging tumors where their eyes should be, or with a single eye-like Cyclops, or without eyes, or without limbs, and even without heads. Significantly, some of the defects are almost unknown outside textbooks showing the babies born near A-bomb test sites in the Pacific.


Canada's Role in Depleted Uranium (DU) Weapons worldwide

by Dr. Alfred Lambremont Webre | Global Research | April 3, 2007

"CANADIAN URANIUM IS BASICALLY PROVIDING THE MATERIAL FOR THESE [DU] WEAPONS And I really would ask you to make this an issue in the front / centre and STOP IT NOW AS QUICKLY AS YOU CAN !! -- Dr. Rosalie Bertell, authority on Depleted Uranium (DU).

Photos of Babies Deformed at Birth as a Result of Depleted Uranium (DU) 2003 photos: Dr. Jenan Hassan WARNING: Extremely Graphic Images!

Let's Follow the Example of Belgium and Make Abolishing the Use of Canadian Uranium in any Depleted Uranium (DU) Weapons world-wide a Priority Issue Now!

DU & Public Health: The public health effects of the use of Depleted Uranium (DU) weapons are such that their use can be considered per se violations of the war crime of Genocide under the Statute of the International Criminal Court. The documented devastating effects of DU weapons on public health include:

3.0 Findings: The negative impacts of radiation from nuclear weapons and nuclear weapons testing, nuclear power and nuclear reactors, and depleted uranium weaponry, include but are not limited to the following.

3.1 Cancer

3.2 Birth defects

3.3 Chronic diseases caused by neurological and neuromuscular radiation damage

3.4 Mitochondrial diseases (Chronic fatigue syndrome, Lou Gehrig's, Parkinsons nad Alzheimer's; Heart and brain disorders)

3.5 Global DNA damage in men's sperm; Infertility in women.

3.6 Learning disabilities

3.7 Mental illness

3.8 Birth rates & death rates

3.9 Diabetes

3.10 Infant mortality and low birth weights

3.11 Atmospheric testing impact on Environment

3.12 It is hereby found that the only feasible remedy to cease the damage to the environment and public health caused by ionizing radiation, and to safeguard the future of humanity and all living things, is to permanently abolish all nuclear technologies.

See also:

International Criminal Tribunal For Afghanistan at Tokyo - Final Written Opinion of Judge Niloufer Bhagwat 10mar04

Uranium & The War

Nothing Depleted About Depleted Uranium

"Occupational Hazards of War: All the Questions About DU (Depleted Uranium) and Gulf War Syndrome Are Not Yet Answered." Dr. Rosalie Bertell

DU & International Law: Depleted Uranium and DU weapons are already prohibited as Weapons of Mass Destruction under existing international conventions and treaties. "According to a August 2002 report by the UN subcommission, laws which are breached by the use of DU shells include: the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the Charter of the United Nations; the Genocide Convention; the Convention Against Torture; the four Geneva Conventions of 1949; the Conventional Weapons Convention of 1980; and the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907, which expressly forbid employing 'poison or poisoned weapons' and 'arms, projectiles or materials calculated to cause unnecessary suffering'. All of these laws are designed to spare civilians from unwarranted suffering in armed conflicts."

What is lacking in the enforcement of this existing international law prohibition.

CANADIAN DU ABOLITION: As of March 2007, Belgium has become the first nation to adopt legislation specifically abolishing the use of Depleted Uranium in weapons.

Canada - One of the world's top exporters of Uranium used for U.S. and other DU weapons - must now adopt legislation abolishing the use of Depleted Uranium in weapons and abolishing the use of Canadian Uranium in Depleted Uranium (DU) in weapons.

The use of Canadian Uranium in any DU weapon - whether Canadian Uranium is enriched and manufactured into DU weapons in the USA or elsewhere, or whether DU weapons are manufactured in Canada - is against existing Canadian policy. There is considerable evidence that Canada is not enforcing its declared policy against the use by the U.S. Government and others of Canadian Uranium for DU weapons purposes.

CANADIAN LEGISLATION: The legislation we are seeking in Canada, like Belgium's recent legislation prohibiting DU weapons, is Canadian-enforceable legislation "to permanently prohibit the Canadian use, sale, development, production, testing, storage, transportation and export of depleted uranium munitions, depleted uranium weapons, or any manufactured parts or other object containing depleted uranium." Moreover, the legislation would prohibit the use or export of Canadian Uranium where such Uranium will be processed into a depleted uranium munition, weapon, or manufactured depleted uranium part.



Please contact your local M.P. (Member of Parliament), and ask for legislation to enforce Canada's policy against the use of Canadian Uranium in any DU weapons, anywhere. Alert your MP of the devastating public health hazards of Depleted Uranium (DU) weapons. Public health is severely endangered by atmospheric DU nanoparticles. Canadian soldiers, as well as the Canadian population, are now at risk, as Depleted Uranium (DU) nanoparticles are carried by the jetstream and westerlies to the atmosphere over North America. Canadian Uranium is literally poisoning the world. By specifically focusing in this way on enforcement of Canadian policy against the use of Canadian Uranium in DU weapons, we can shut off a significant supply of depleted uranium for the USA and the other 17 or so nations that now use or store DU weapons.

AUDIO TRANSCRIPT - [prepared by Janet M. Eaton] of remarks by:

DR. ROSALIE BERTELL speaking on DEPLETED URANIUM [DU] WEAPONS and CANADA'S central ROLE in the PRODUCTION of these weapons. m

Dr. Bertell was one of nine prominent Canadians speaking at:

An Unjust and Illegal WAR: Leading opponents of the War against Yugoslavia speak out: A public meeting held at Convocation Hall
at the University of Toronto May 6 1999.

Dr. Rosalie Bertell is one of the world's leading authorities on health effects of low level radiation. For a decade she worked for the US National Cancer Institute and for 30 years has been in the forefront of research on the effects of low level radiation on human health. In 1984 she founded the International Institute of Concern for Public Health in Toronto.

For further background on Dr. Bertell see :

"Dr. Rosalie Bertell - A Great Humanitarian & Scientist"





CKLN 88.1 FM's Rude Awakening: Remembering The Fight, The Fluoride, The Truth, The Fallen and The Future - November 11, 2010


November 11, 2010

CKLN 88.1 FM's Rude Awakening

Remembering Fluoride, The Truth, The Fallen and The Future

Featuring: Alex Jones, Dr. Paul Connett

Show MP3 Downloads:


This episode: Will we remember the system of "free trade" behind "globalization" was written by philosopher John Dee in the 1500's for the British Empire? That General Smedley Butler stopped a U.S. Nazi-fascist coup by Prescott Bush and friends in 1933? That 9/11 was an inside job? That we can fight the big corporations poisoning us with fluoride and more here instead of helping them poison other people and steal their stuff overseas? Will truth be the first casualty of remembering war? Again?

CKLN Radio's Rude Awakening Morning Show is hosted by Black Krishna, aka BK, aka Vijay Sarma, aka Vij, on Mondays and Thursdays from 6 - 7 am EST on CKLN 88.1 FM, Rogers Cable 947 or online. Public domain mp3's to share or post clips online on YouTube (etc.) are available after 8 am at, and Please contact or with your questions, answers, suggestions and more.


Article: Discourse on History, Geography, and Law: John Dee and the Limits of the British Empire, 1576-80.

... Most writers accept that Dee created the phrase "British Empire," but otherwise argue that his imperial vision was simply propaganda and antiquarianism, without much practical value and of limited interest to the English crown and state. ...

... Dee proclaimed the queen's right to trade in new found lands by natural law, and to draw into her dominion those lands that were discovered by English subjects and were not currently in the actual possession of a Christian prince by civil law, canon law, and the law of nations. He laid the foundation for the British claiming territory by occupation rather than mere discovery, recognizing that in civil law possession was not an act of will or intent (as the Spanish tended to see it) but of physical presence and effective control. ...

Chatham House History

In 1919 British and American delegates to the Paris Peace Conference, under the leadership of Lionel Curtis, conceived the idea of an Anglo-American Institute of foreign affairs to study international problems with a view to preventing future wars. In the event, the British Institute of International Affairs was founded separately in London in July 1920 and received its Royal Charter in 1926 to become The Royal Institute of International Affairs. The American delegates developed the Council on Foreign Relations in New York as a sister institute. Both are now among the world's leading international affairs think-tanks.

Stephen Harper faces a sharply divided G20 summit

... “Enlightened sovereignty, in which the temptation to unilateral action in pursuit of transitory gains was tempered by the need to maintain the viability of partner economies, produced win-win situations all over the world.

* "I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism."

* "Like all the members of the military profession, I never had a thought of my own until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service."

* "War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives."

* "There are 40,000,000 men under arms in the world today, and our statesmen and diplomats have the temerity to say that war is not in the making. Hell's bells! Are these 40,000,000 men being trained to be dancers?"

* "A few profit – and the many pay. But there is a way to stop it. You can't end it by disarmament conferences. You can't eliminate it by peace parleys at Geneva. Well-meaning but impractical groups can't wipe it out by resolutions. It can be smashed effectively only by taking the profit out of war."

- Brigadier General Smedley D. Butler, "War Is A Racket" (1935)

John Buchanan on the U.S. Fascist Coup - From Martial Law 9/11: Rise of the Police State (2004) by Alex Jones

TerrorStorm: A Declassified History of Government Sponsored Terrorism

Chomsky: No Evidence of al Qaeda Behind 9/11

... Chomsky told Press TV: "The explicit and declared motive of the [Afghanistan] war was to compel the Taliban to turn over to the United States, the people who they accused of having been involved in World Trade Center and Pentagon terrorist acts. The Taliban... they requested evidence... and the Bush administration refused to provide any. We later discovered one of the reasons why they did not bring evidence: they did not have any."

Why do we use chlorine and fluoride in our water?

... And in keeping with Health Canada Guidelines, our fluoride level maximizes dental health benefits and minimizes concerns about over exposure.

Canadian Drinking Water Guidelines

"Children under three should never use fluoridated toothpaste," he counseled. "Or drink fluoridated water. And baby formula must never be made up using Toronto tap water. Never."

Why, I wondered? What could have caused such a powerful paradigm shift?

"It's been building up for a couple of years," Limeback told me during a recent telephone interview. "But certainly the crowning blow was the realization that we have been dumping contaminated fluoride into water reservoirs for half a century. The vast majority of all fluoride additives come from Tampa Bay, Florida, smokestack scrubbers. The additives are a toxic byproduct of the super-phosphate fertilizer industry."

"Tragically," he continued, "that means we're not just dumping toxic fluoride into our drinking water. We're also exposing innocent, unsuspecting people to deadly elements of lead, arsenic and radium, all of them carcinogenic. Because of the cumulative properties of toxins, the detrimental effects on human health are catastrophic."

- Dr. Hardy Limeback, Head of Preventive Dentistry, University of Toronto, December 5, 1999


A "painstakingly researched exposé of fluoridation's overall ineffectiveness and toxicity... It remains to be seen whether the public-health community will give this landmark work due credit or continue to rubber stamp an outdated policy that, like bloodletting and trepanation, properly belongs on the scrap heap of sham medical interventions." - BOOKLIST (American Library Association)

Interview with Author: Why Water Shouldn’t Be Fluoridated - Toronto Globe & Mail, October 18, 2010

In the case of fluoridation, the water supply is being used as a drug-delivery mechanism to treat a medical condition. Why is this wrong, in your view?

It violates people’s right to informed consent, which has always been the strongest argument against fluoridation. We’ve never done it with other drugs. Since fluoridation began in 1945, not one other substance has been added to the water to address a health concern. You shouldn’t use the water supply to deliver medication, for obvious reasons. You can’t control the dose. You can’t control who will get it. There is no individual supervision. The whole practice doesn’t make sense from a medical point of view.

Alex Jones talks with Paul Connett, PhD, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry at St. Lawrence University. Mr. Connett has voiced his concern over the dangers posed by fluoride and the very poor science underpinning its supposed efficacy in protecting children's teeth.

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 20.2010 - Conspiracy Culture @ The Bloor Cinema presents...


The Chemtrail / Geo-engineering Cover-up Exposed

earlybirds (first 50 tickets) $5
advanced Tickets $7
at the door $10



Monday, November 08, 2010

CKLN 88.1 FM's Rude Awakening: Are We More Scared Of Each Other Than The Government? - November 8, 2010


November 8, 2010

CKLN 88.1 FM's Rude Awakening

Are We More Scared Of Each Other Than The Government?

Show MP3 Download Links:


This episode: Are the millions online who look into the shadow government behind globalization more scared to talk to other people than they are of the government knowing what they look into? Can socially constipated Canadians find ways to use the 2000 year old Socratic "dialectic" process to try to figure things out? Are we too scared to talk to our elected officials? Should men and women separate to get their facts straight like the Masons? Will this generation carry or drop the ball forever?

CKLN Radio's Rude Awakening Morning Show is hosted by Black Krishna, aka BK, aka Vijay Sarma, aka Vij, on Mondays and Thursdays from 6 - 7 am EST on CKLN 88.1 FM, Rogers Cable 947 or online. Public domain mp3's to share or post clips online on YouTube (etc.) are available after 8 am at, and Please contact or with any questions, answers, suggestions and more.


How to ask awkward questions and annoy people

In his endless, often exasperating pursuit of Truth, Socrates made many enemies. Yet his ideas and his questioning outlook remain invaluable to understanding the present.

Run for the Cure raises record $33 million to support the Foundation’s vision of creating a future without breast cancer

TORONTO, October 3, 2010 – Canadians show record breaking support today to raise $33 million in the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure.

Now in its 19th year, the Run for the Cure is the largest, single-day, volunteer-led, national event in support of breast cancer research. This year’s Run for the Cure attracted more than 170,000 Canadians in 60 communities across the country.


TORONTO (Oct 6, 2010) – A report from the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF) has recommended more comprehensive breast cancer screening in Ontario, including for women ages 40-49, based on the scientific evidence.

A smartphone cause for smarter breast health: Canadians support Breast Cancer Awareness month with TELUS

TELUS extends pink BlackBerry smartphone campaign until December 31

Toronto, ON – TELUS today announced the extension of its ‘Go Pink' campaign in support of breast cancer detection until December 31, 2010. Since May, TELUS has donated $25 from the sale of its exclusive pink BlackBerry devices to local breast cancer organizations across Canada to help bring early breast cancer detection equipment to our communities. The announcement was made today by TELUS President and CEO Darren Entwistle at the Canadian Club, where he gave away 400 pink BlackBerry smartphones to the attending audience.

Breast Cancer Rates Soar after Mammograms and Some Cancers may Heal Naturally

(NaturalNews) A report just published in the Journal of the American Medical Association's Archives of Internal Medicine (Arch Intern Med. 2008;168[21]:2302-2303) reaches a startling conclusion. Breast cancer rates increased significantly in four Norwegian counties after women there began getting mammograms every two years. In fact, according to background information in the study, the start of screening mammography programs throughout Europe has been associated with increased incidence of breast cancer.

Mammograms cause breast cancer (and other cancer facts you probably never knew)

... Effectiveness of Mammography

Is mammography an effective tool for detecting tumors? Some critics say no. In a Swedish study of 60,000 women, 70 percent of the mammographically detected tumors weren't tumors at all. These "false positives" aren't just financial and emotional strains, they may also lead to many unnecessary and invasive biopsies. In fact, 70 to 80 percent of all positive mammograms do not, upon biopsy, show any presence of cancer.

2010 Toronto Mayor Hopeful on the CIBC Breast Cancer Run - 1 of 5

Canada considers extended stay in Afghanistan

The Canadian Press | November 8, 2010

HALIFAX—The Harper government is thinking about a proposal to keep hundreds of Canadian troops in Afghanistan until 2014 in a training role.

Sources tell The Canadian Press they expect Prime Minister Harper to decide soon whether to send up to 600 troops to Kabul to train Afghan troops.

The Canadian personnel would not be involved in combat operations, but their role would continue until 2014.

That would extend Canada’s military presence in Afghanistan three years past the end of the combat mission next July.

Awesome new Call of Duty ad releases everyone's inner soldier

There have been a lot of trailers and ads for the new Call of Duty, but this one may very well be the best one we’ve seen. Instead of focusing on gameplay and cinematics, this newest ad focuses on the players themselves and proclaims, “There's a soldier in all of us.”

ALAN WATT: Heroes, Values, Men and Women (17 min sample clip)

ALAN WATT: Full Interviews on The World and Culture Creation Industry



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FYI, if you're interested, these interviews can help us understand the world.


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Call of Duty: Black Ops TV Commercial: "There's A Soldier In All Of Us"

> [redacted] have you seen the “"There's A Soldier In All Of Us" Call of Duty
> commercial? This thing is nuts. The little girl at 10 seconds is
> disturbing if not outright revolting.
> Take a gander:


Call of Duty: Black Ops TV Commercial: "There's A Soldier In All Of Us"


jah dood, i saw it, or the gander got my dander up, especially seeing us get goosed. i can't believe the kiddies they've got blasting away and selling the "soldier in all of us" crap, i should've flipped out on it this morning when i had no working computer or newspaper, but instead i just cathartically rambled over a jazz cd i scrambled to find, i think it went well enough. still, it's amazing how socially constipated we all are, especially me, but fortunately like a crazy old tenured professor that'd be too much trouble to fire, i can get away with sh-ttin' on everything on air. thanks for the russell too, i watched a bunch of his interviews and stuff and i'm looking forward to eating his curried leftovers by taking my stuff to a stage. i realize that as long as people have plausible deniability they can listen to my crap, or nobody can want to or say they want to, but if they happen to, then they don't mind. methinks some open mic'in is in the offing, there's no right way of doing this crap, so i can get away with doing anything or nothing. however, there is a "funny" way of doing stuff, so it'll be good to get a metric for it, plus more fun too. i swear, i was in a jam session the other day with two guitarists and a drummer, it went well for the first hour, but the second i got a little too loopy and started thinking too much, always a bad idea when you're trying to feel.

i was realizing how crazy "music" is when it comes right down to what it's for and what it accomplishes, at least based on where we are and what we're up to and how we got here, which caused me to pause on my handy audio hand-job and shrink to the background vocals a bit. i just didn't know what to "say" or "feel" to be "real" without going too far for the people i was with too, especially since i know as a band they like to keep things fun. random chickery floated through my mind for "love" and "fun" songs, but even so, freestyling it can feel kind of funny unless you're totally focused on not. i'm planning on recording heavy in a month or so, but it's not like the simplifications haven't been done better by bob and the other bob and others, so i can either update them or move on the complexities, or maybe both. can i get angry enough about "twitter" to sing, scream or rap it well? will that be seen as a gimmick? will "twits" just spit it back out since they (want to) like it? once the "toronto 2012" project plans are done, then it'll be back to the sales pitch, both selling what everyone can do (flyer like a lunatic) and what i can do (live like a lunatic) so one garners faith in the other (you decide), assuming it happens. i dunno, sometimes i feel like shillin' oat, but then i see how much tougher this is for sane people, which drives me crazy.

bah, the only thing i really need is the cash to continue, then i could not give a flying figaro about the other stuff.

the votes were one "number" metric, i'm looking for another, that should be enough of a freedomandate.

canadian counter-psyop's rejoice, it's now or never, polite and political, close enough.

of course, then there's ye olde responsibility, which i've never been good at.

but, maybe it's not too late to live and learn, at least as a hobby.


How to ask awkward questions and annoy people

In his endless, often exasperating pursuit of Truth, Socrates made many enemies. Yet his ideas and his questioning outlook remain invaluable to understanding the present.

Angus Kennedy | | September 2010

Diogenes Laertius, in his Lives of the Philosophers, tells us that Socrates, unsatisfied with the natural philosophy of his day, ‘began to enter upon moral speculations, both in his workshop and in the marketplace’. He devoted his life to investigating what it was for a man to live well or badly.

Socrates’ relentless questioning of received moral wisdom and authority, his struggle to apprehend real existence in consciousness, would make him many enemies. Laertius goes on to tell us that ‘very often, while arguing and discussing points that arose, he was treated with great violence and beaten, and pulled about, and laughed at and ridiculed by the multitude’. The great Athenian comedian Aristophanes ridiculed Socrates in his Clouds as ‘an artful fellow, a blusterer, a villain, a knave with one hundred faces, cunning, intolerable, a gluttonous dog’. In Plato’s Meno, Socrates offends a man called Anytus by suggesting that even great men such as Themistocles and Thucydides were not capable of teaching their sons to be good. Anytus warns him to be careful, that he is ‘too ready to speak evil of men’. It was Anytus who brought the prosecution against Socrates in 399 BC, on charges of impiety and corrupting the youth, which led to Socrates’ execution.

Was Socrates really so intolerable? Intolerant of Athenian democracy’s belief that the many had the wisdom to judge, was he a threat to democracy itself? Was he guilty of asking too many questions? The debate about Socrates has raged continuously since his death. The birthplace of democracy, famed for introducing freedom of speech and equality before the law, had executed one of the first philosophers for the crime, essentially, of holding certain beliefs and for trying to educate his fellow citizens in morality. IF Stone argues in his 1989 classic, The Trial of Socrates, that he martyred himself to make his opposition to Athenian democracy immortal. But that implies that we should see Socrates as a hero of free speech at the expense of the ideal of democracy. So was Athens just a sham, a democracy in name only, a xenophobic and sexist system resting its leisured elbows on the broken backs of slave labourers, as many now claim?