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Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei was arrested by the Chinese authorities last week, when he was trying to leave the country, possibly to set up permanent base in Berlin. He's the most well-known out of scores of artists and dissidents who have been rounded up since the unrest in the Middle East commenced. It's a reminder that the regime that we in the West depend on to supply our consumer economy, and which the international art market somewhat disgustingly relies on to keep its own oily wheels turning, is still at heart a brutal dictatorship.

I am reposting the web-talk I did about Ai Wei Wei, above. Here is a link to an online petition you can join, calling for the release of Ai and the other detainees:

http://www.change.org/petitions/call-for-the-release-of-ai-weiwei

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I

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