UPDATE – This topic is currently running through some further investigation. You will find an update soon.
Who is behind the Peng! Collective and is there any connection to US rightwing anti-islamic thinktank AYN RAND Institute?
Since I live here in downtown Hamburg, St.Pauli, amongst 1200 freshly arrived refugees, who are being sheltered in the Hamburg Exhibiton Halls “Messehallen”,
I absolutely and always support the “Refugees Welcome” campaign of our local social networks and political parties.
Meanwhile I stumbled onto this website “Fluchthelfer.in” (Escape Agent) today,
which on one hand side expressed my own feelings, as far as the wish is concerned,
to just get a car and carry some of the most impoverished people from Hungary over here to Germany.
However I always bear on mind that I could never do this without approval from our local authorities,
as much as I am in total disregard of and in oppostion to the current german leadership.
Now this bizarre website, which uses the slogan “Shuttlen statt Schmuggeln” (Shuttle not smuggle),
which btw has no imprint to identify its originators,
at first seemed to have been registered by the notorious Ayn Rand Institute from Irvine, California, USA,
whose stated goal is to multiply the message of “Objectivism”, a neoliberal ideology of egoism which is best described in their own words:
” . . . to spearhead a cultural renaissance that will reverse the anti-reason, anti-individualism, anti-freedom, anti-capitalist trends in today’s culture.
The major battleground in this fight for reason and capitalism is the educational institutions—high schools and, above all, the universities, where students learn the ideas that shape their lives.”
Between March 2015 and 1st of September 2015, the registrant of Fluchthelfer.in according to whois.net has been the Ayn Rand Institute,
which considerably is part of a scam of the makers of this campaign and has now been changed to the non-existent “The Escape Institute” at a non-existent address in San Diego, CA.
So even though these hints might show, that Ayn Rand Institute IS NOT behind this “prank” it is still worth paying some critical attention to their agenda as you can see further below.
Now who is the Peng! Collective from Berlin and what is their agenda?
According to wikipedia the Berlin based Peng! Collective is a group of “culture jamming activists” whose main target are the great global corporations
the likes of Shell and Vattenfall, as well as social disturbances like sexist or homophobic tendencies in the web.
Their main tool is the world of media, in which they create their camouflage illusions, like the pranking of a Shell-sponsored science slam or their latest
online campaign Fluchthelfer.in in order to “turn the NGO-world upside down!” as one of their member openly states.
Their website http://pen.gg is partly generated by a random images and content system, thus creating the impression of an international
network of creatively subversive media activists. However this fact is not hidden from the visitor.
The 2 main figures associated with the Peng! collective in the media are Jean Peters, a clown based in Berlin, and
Ruben Neugebauer, a professional photographer from the University of Hannover.
Their aliases in various interviews range from Paul von Ribbeck to Lutz Huhn to Maximilian Thalbach.
They openly call for an act of civil disobedience against existing EU migration law with their latest campaign
and are entering a difficult field of european politics.
And this is where the criticism starts.
In one of his interviews Neugebauer states, that “the question is not about legal or illegal”
but rather whether or not the action is legitimate and is quickly using references in history
like the Fluchthelfer Movement on the innergerman border, adding that he sees himself and his group “morally on the right side of history…”.
To me the question should rather be “Does it make sense?” in terms of a serious structural answer to the current capitulation
of our administrations towards the repercussions of their own misfortunate foreign and economic politics.
We need collective answers to a global problem and it remains questionable, who will be in support of those Fluchthelferinnen, who end up
in legal trouble.
For this case the Peng! collective has set up an online “fund” based on crowdsharing and has so far collected 17209,-€.
For a “donation” of 300€ they sell you a so-called “starterkit” for Fluchthelfer, including a bunch of promotional rubbish,
germany flags for your sidemirrors, Janosch window screens and a “fresh simcard” in order not to be locatable.
If you are one of the unlucky ones, you can use the Peng! fund by donating 500,-€ into the fund to have access to legal aid.
500,-€ is about the regular entry fee for a lawyer in germany, so I am in doubt about the necessity and these unusual structures of the fund.
to be continued…
As we can further read on wikipedia about Ayn Rand Institute anti-islamic notion:
Islam and the War on Terror
ARI has taken many controversial positions with respect to the Muslim world. They hold that the motivation for Islamic terrorism comes from their religiosity, not poverty or a reaction to Western policies. They have urged that the US use overwhelming, retaliatory force to “end states who sponsor terrorism”, using whatever means are necessary to end the threat. In his article “Ends States Who Sponsor Terrorism”, which was published as a full page ad in The New York Times, Peikoff wrote, “The choice today is mass death in the United States or mass death in the terrorist nations. Our Commander-In-Chief must decide whether it is his duty to save Americans or the governments who conspire to kill them.” Although some at ARI initially supported the invasion of Iraq, it has criticized how the Iraq War was handled. Since October 2, 2001, the institute has held that Iran should be the primary target in the war against “Islamic totalitarianism”.
ARI is generally supportive of Israel. Of Zionism, executive director of the institute Yaron Brook writes: “Zionism fused a valid concern – self-preservation amid a storm of hostility – with a toxic premise – ethnically based collectivism and religion.”
While it is a blatant shame to see how European governments are unwilling and unable to prevent an imminent humanitarian catastrophy in Europe of a historically unprecedented scale and
a clear revelation of the false underlying economic and ideological structures of our world’s political elite establishment,
I’d not advise to follow any manipulative instructions by dubious initiatives whose only security on offer is a crowdfunding pool and who have no reliable connection to existing
social structures and political parties.
Ingmar J. Gauger
8 September 2015
Roots Messenger Media