Monday, September 29, 2008

On the road again: This time to Texas

I'm on my way to Texas tomorrow. We're going to Ann's 40th high school reunion. And we'll visit with some family. I will try to post from Texas. I think it will be possible. Anyway, Happy New Year and may this year be better and sweeter than any of the last eight.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Debate results: Barack over McCain

Here's the latest polling data on the Friday evening presidential debate:

PRINCETON, NJ -- Americans who watched the first presidential debate on Sept. 26 gave Barack Obama the edge over John McCain as having done the better job in the debate, by a 46% to 34% margin. These results are based on a special USA Today/Gallup Poll conducted on Saturday, Sept. 27, the first day after the debate.
I realize that this doesn't mean much, it's just a snapshot, but it does contradict most of the wing nut analyses of the debate.

Friday, September 26, 2008

McClone charade ends where it began: Focus on McCain

The latest news reports say that after a week of "will he or won't he?" speculation John McClone has finally announced that he will participate in tonight's presidential campaign debate at the University of Mississippi. According to the New York Times:
Senator John McCain’s campaign said Friday morning that he will attend tonight’s debate with Senator Barack Obama at the University of Mississippi, reversing his earlier call to postpone the debate so he could participate in the Congressional negotiations over the $700 billion bailout plan for financial firms.
Remember Clone's earlier announcement about what he was doing (NYT, 9/24/08):
Declaring that it was time to 'set politics aside,' Senator John McCain said Wednesday that he would temporarily stop campaigning and seek to delay Friday’s debate with Senator Barack Obama to return to Washington to help forge an agreement on a proposed $700 billion bailout of financial institutions before Congress.
If you've been wondering what this charade was all about. Here's how Clone "set[s] politics aside (NYT, 9/26/08):
His campaign issued a statement Friday morning saying he was now 'optimistic' that a bipartisan bailout agreement would be reached soon, citing 'significant progress' in the talks.

The statement was sharply critical of Mr. Obama, who, like Mr. McCain, returned to Washington on Thursday to take part in the bailout talks. The statement portrayed Mr. Obama as unduly partisan and insufficiently concerned with protecting taxpayer interests in the bailout negotiations, while Mr. McCain was framed as the leader of House and Senate Republicans seeking to reach a compromise agreement.

'The difference between Barack Obama and John McCain was apparent during the White House meeting yesterday where Barack Obama’s priority was political posturing in his opening monologue defending the package as it stands,' said the McCain campaign statement.

'John McCain listened to all sides so he could help focus the debate on finding a bipartisan resolution that is in the interest of taxpayers and homeowners. The Democratic interests stood together in opposition to an agreement that would accommodate additional taxpayer protections.'
Most observers say that Clone has contributed nothing to the discussions about the bailout. As of Tuesday he had not even read the White House three-page proposal and' as of this moment, he still hasn't stated his position on the current version of the "bailout" proposal. From the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:
It's hard to see the logic or value in Republican nominee John McCain's move [Wednesday 9/17] to suspend his presidential campaign, thus hoping to avoid his first debate with Barack Obama [to]night.

Presidential campaigns took place in 1864 in the midst of the Civil War, in 1932 with the Great Depression and in 1944 during World War II. Suddenly the nation's Republican standard-bearer needs to retreat from campaigning because Congress is working on a financial rescue plan.

.... While Mr. McCain professes concern, his move looks more like an irresponsible campaign trick, directed against Barack Obama and the voters.
It's clear that Clone created this circus because a week ago he was down in the polls, his vice-presidential choice was being ridiculed, so he tried to make himself the center ring of this political circus. Only time will tell if his Hail Mary pass will be caught for a touchdown or intercepted for a six-point loss.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Now McClone wants to postpone the VP debate: Scared?

The phony showboating of John McClone "suspending" his campaign is now being extended to "postponing" the upcoming (a week from Friday, Oct. 3) debate between the vice-presidential candidates. According to Nico Pitney on the Huffington Post:
John McCain's campaign now wants to suspend the VP debate?

CNN's Dana Bash reports that McCain officials are "trying to negotiate with the Obama campaign and the presidential debate commission" to change next Thursday's planned vice presidential debate into a McCain-Obama affair. The VP debate would be postponed to another date.

"That is what they are proposing," Bash reported. "[McCain officials] understand very well that both the Obama campaign and the debate commission have no intention of delaying Friday's debate, but...if there is no bailout deal by Friday, McCain has no plan to go to debate."

TODAY, Sept.25, 4PM: Protest Bailout of Wall Street

The Bailout is Bull Sh*t!!"
Today, Sept 25, 4pm

Southern end of Bowling Green Park, in the plaza area

Bring stuff you want bailed out, or just yourself. You can also wear your Wall Street finest for a little role-playing!

Here's the e-mail sent out by my old Guardian colleague Arun Gupta (currently with the Indypendent), that began the move for this protest of the Wall Street bailout:
Everyone,

This week the White House is going to try to push through the biggest robbery in world history with nary a stitch of debate to bail out the Wall Street bastards who created this economic apocalypse in the first place.

This is the financial equivalent of September 11. They think, just like with the Patriot Act, they can use the shock to force through the “therapy,” and we’ll just roll over!

Think about it: They said providing healthcare for 9 million children, perhaps costing $6 billion a year, was too expensive, but there’s evidently no sum of money large enough that will sate the Wall Street pigs. If this passes, forget about any money for environmental protection, to counter global warming, for education, for national healthcare, to rebuild our decaying infrastructure, for alternative energy.

This is a historic moment. We need to act now while we can influence the debate. Let’s demonstrate this Thursday at 4pm in Wall Street (see below).

We know the congressional Democrats will peep meekly before caving in like they have on everything else, from FISA to the Iraq War.

With Bear Stearns, Fannie and Freddie, AIG, the money markets and now this omnibus bailout, well in excess of $1 trillion will be distributed from the poor, workers and middle class to the scum floating on top.

This whole mess gives lie to the free market. The Feds are propping up stock prices, directing buyouts, subsidizing crooks and swindlers who already made a killing off the mortgage bubble.

Worst of all, even before any details have been hashed out, The New York Times admits that “Wall Street began looking for ways to profit from it,” and its chief financial correspondent writes that the Bush administration wants “Congress to give them a blank check to do whatever they want, whatever the cost, with no one able to watch them closely.”

It’s socialism for the rich and dog-eat-dog capitalism for the rest of us.

Let’s take it to the heart of the financial district! Gather at 4pm, this Thursday, Sept. 25 in the plaza at the southern end of Bowling Green Park, which is the small triangular park that has the Wall Street bull at the northern tip.

By having it later in the day we can show these thieves, as they leave work, we’re not their suckers. Plus, anyone who can’t get off work can still join us downtown as soon as they are able.

There is no agenda, no leaders, no organizing group, nothing to endorse other than we’re not going to pay! Let the bondholders pay, let the banks pay, let those who brought the “toxic” mortgage-backed securities pay!

On this list are many key organizers and activists. We have a huge amount of connections – we all know many other organizations, activists and community groups. We know P.R. folk who can quickly write up and distribute press releases, those who can contact legal observers, media activists who can spread the word, the videographers who can film the event, etc.

Do whatever you can – make and distribute your own flyers, contact all your groups and friends. This crime is without precedence and we can’t be silent! What’s the point of waiting for someone else to organize a protest two months from now, long after the crime has been perpetrated?

We have everything we need to create a large, peaceful, loud demonstration. Millions of others must feel the same way; they just don’t know what to do. Let’s take the lead and make this the start!
AGAIN:
Today, Sept. 25. 4PM
Southern end of Bowling Green Park, in the plaza area

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

McClone tries to steal the spotlight again

Here's the campaign developments as the media are reporting them:
Republican John McCain said Wednesday he is directing his staff to work with Democrat Barack Obama's campaign and the presidential debate commission to delay Friday's debate because of the economic crisis.
In other words, John McCain is taking credit for putting politics aside in order to work with Barack Obama on the Wall Street crisis.

Remember when he and his running mate ran down to New Orleans to be photographed while a hurricane was still expected. If they had waited any longer, the storm would have abated before they got there for their photo op.

Well as usual McCain is grandstanding. Here's what really happened:
The Obama campaign said Obama had called McCain around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday to propose that they issue a joint statement in support of a package to help fix the economy as soon as possible. McCain called back six hours later and agreed to the idea of the statement, the Obama campaign said. McCain's statement was issued to the media a few minutes later.

'We must meet as Americans, not as Democrats or Republicans, and we must meet until this crisis is resolved,' McCain said. 'I am confident that before the markets open on Monday we can achieve consensus on legislation that will stabilize our financial markets, protect taxpayers and homeowners, and earn the confidence of the American people. All we must do to achieve this is temporarily set politics aside, and I am committed to doing so.'
So Obama behaved in a principled and courteous manner. McClone, on the other hand, took the opportunity to upstage his opponent and the press is reporting it the way clone wants it to appear. Nothing unusual here.

Oh, by the way, Clone has not suspended his anti-Obama TV commercials, while he acts in a "bilateral" fashion.

One can ask, what exactly is economically-challenged McClone going to contribute to the discussion. As usual, everything is a political opportunity for Clone.

Obama is going to make a statement very soon. If anything comes of it, I'll be back. Word has it that Obama will say the debate can go on.

Sept. 25, 6:30 pm: Film Showing: "Sir! No Sir"!"

Thursday, Sept. 25, 6:30 pm

Film-screening: "Sir! No Sir!" (2006)
Documentary about GI resistance and movement to end the Vietnam War.
Film by David Zeiger.

Brooklyn Historical Society,
128 Pierrepont Street, (corner of Clinton),
Brooklyn Heights.
(Trains: M,N,R, to Court Street; A,C to High Street; 2,3,4,5 to Boro Hall; A,C,F to Jay Street.)


Commentator: Dr. Howard Levy (interviewed in the film), Brooklyn physician, who refused to train Green Berets. He was court-martialled, and served three years in prison.

This is the story of one of the most vibrant and widespread upheavals of the 1960’s--one that had a profound impact on American society yet has been virtually obliterated from the collective memory of that time.

Second in a five-part film series about the Vietnam War,
co-hosted by Brooklyn For Peace and the Brooklyn Historical Society, in conjunction with BHS's exhibit: In Our Own Words: Portraits of Brooklyn Vietnam Veterans.

Free Admission to the film.
Come early to see the exhibit.
Museum normally closes at 5:00 pm, but will be open prior to the screening, until 6:30 pm (pay-what-you-wish admission).

Questions? Call 718-624-5921 or e-mail bfp@brooklynpeace.org

For information on other events and activities,
visit our website www.brooklynpeace.org

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Oct. 2-7: Statewide week of pro-choice activism

From NARAL Pro-choice NY:

Statewide Week of Activism, October 2-7

With 42 days remaining until the election, candidates and activists on all sides are ramping up their efforts to win over New Yorkers. For example, tomorrow a radical anti-choice group is launching its "40 Days for Life" campaign across the country - including in seven cities in New York - in an effort to harass women, intimidate doctors, and misinform voters.

Join us to prove that anti-choice fringe extremists don't hold the monopoly on political activism. Our efforts to mobilize pro-choice New Yorkers are now coming to a head. During the first week of October, we're rolling out our Statewide Week of Activism. Your involvement has never been more crucial!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

WMD spotted on Wall Street. Congress rushes to invade our pocketbooks

(Note: I've been working on these thoughts on the Bush bailout of his Wall Street friends for a few days. It's not finished, but I thought I would try something different. I am publishing it and will keep working on it. If you have any comments that would be really helpful. Thanks, Dan)

Remember those pesky WMDs that brought all but a few members of Congress to vote to give Bush (Cheney?) the power to invade Iraq. There was no time for questions and anyone who didn't go along was unpatriotic. Well we know how that went. The Democrats caved in and disaster followed apace. Here we go again. The Democratic cave in: the sequel.

Bush "experts" rush to Congress asking both parties to solve the latest problem by giving more power to the administration. "The sky is falling, the sky is falling," Chicken Little Paulson (Secy of the Treasury) cries and there's no time to waste asking questions or discussing alternative measures that might pick our pockets a bit less. If you hesitate for even a moment, you will be labled an obstructionist by Bush. That scares the votes out of the Democrats.

The Congressional Republicans are no problem for the administration's latest scam. They know who they work for and on which side their political bread is buttered. But will the Democrats - who ostensibly work for us - fall into line or will they ask questions and consider alternatives. At the moment it doesn't look promising. [Note 9/23: It's hard to tell yet, but there may actually be some resistence this time-even from Republicans.]

But maybe Candidate Obama will remember that he's also Senator Obama or perhaps Sen. Clinton can exercise some leadership and speak for us. So far the only opposing senatorial voice I've heard is Vermont's independent Bernie Sanders

I don't have a handy solution in my economic quiver, but it would seem as if the bulk of the solution should come out of the pockets of those who caused the problem and benefited from it, not from those of us who have been helplessly watching from the sidelines. Let's not forget that this crisis is a direct result of the right-wing ideology of deregulation. Much like the Iraq invasion and subsequent occupation was a result of a delusional strategy for solving the energy crisis (under the cloak of spreading the American way to the benighted Middle Eastern infidels by whatever means necessary). It's not surprising that, in yesterday's announcement, Bush said we shouldn't waste time looking for explanations of why it happened, but just let him protect us from the Wall Street WMDs.

Always be fearful of a Bush demanding speed and a "clean bill," which according to Paul Krugman (NYT, 9/22/08):
But Mr. Paulson insists that he wants a “clean” plan. “Clean,” in this context, means a taxpayer-financed bailout with no strings attached — no quid pro quo on the part of those being bailed out. Why is that a good thing? Add to this the fact that Mr. Paulson is also demanding dictatorial authority, plus immunity from review “by any court of law or any administrative agency,” and this adds up to an unacceptable proposal.
Since it was elected by the Supreme Court in 2000, the Bush administration has been devoted to achieving two results: (1) To enhance the powers of the imperial presidency at the expense of the other two branches of the government; and (2) to use this enhanced power to enrich the wealthiest portion of the population to the detriment of the middle and poorer sectors. Just as they used 9/11 to pass the Patriot Act and create the Homeland Security Department and ultimately to carry out the long-desired invasion of Iraq. They now want to divert a minimum of $700 billion to the richest corporations. And get absolute control over this "bailout." Here's what Bob Herbert says (NYT, 9/23/08):
Lobbyists, bankers and Wall Street types are already hopping up and down like over-excited children, ready to burst into the government’s $700 billion piƱata. This widespread eagerness is itself an indication that there is something too sweet about the Paulson plan.

This is not supposed to be a good deal for business. 'The idea is that you’re coming here because you would be going bankrupt otherwise,' said Mr. [Dean]Baker [of The Center for Economic and Policy Research]. 'You’re coming here because you have no alternative. You’re getting a bad deal, but it’s better than going out of business. That’s how it should be structured.'
Here's a really good analysis by Katrina Vanden Heuval's Editor's Cut

Naomi Klein applies her Shock Doctrine theory to the current situation:
It would be a grave mistake to underestimate the right's ability to use this crisis -- created by deregulation and privatization -- to demand more of the same.

Hey Charlie! Why tar the disabled community with a comparison to Sarah Palin?

I remarkably find myself in agreement with some Republican critics of Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-NY). Rangel said (when asked by CBS-TV news reporter Marcia Kramer to comment on Palin):
You got to be kind to the disabled.
Even a right-wing Republican character like McClone-Palin N.Y. state campaign chair, Rep. Pete King said:
Charlie owes a sincere apology to Sarah Palin and the entire disabled community.
I don't know about Palin, but, as Disabled in Action president said:
I am not one of her fans; but I don't like the idea he referred to the woman as disabled. I mean he's talking about her politics - that word has no place here.
So Charlie, she may be politically (intellectually) disadvantaged, which makes her the perfect running mate for John (foot-in-mouth) McClone, but don't insult those struggling with challenges.

Charges Dropped Against Democracy Now! Journalists – Investigation Needed

Here's the latest on the Democracy Now arrests at the Republican Conventionl, when they were just doing their job.

Charges Dropped Against Democracy Now! Journalists – Investigation Needed. Thank You For Your Support!

The St. Paul City Attorney's office announced Friday it will not prosecute Democracy Now! journalists Amy Goodman, Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar. St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman also issued a statement Friday
that the city will decline to prosecute misdemeanor charges for presence at an unlawful assembly for journalists arrested during the Republican National Convention.

Both announcements come two weeks after the conclusion of the Republican National Convention where over 40 journalists were arrested while reporting on protests taking place outside the convention center.

Upon learning of the news, Democracy Now! Host, Amy Goodman said,
It's good that these false charges have finally been dropped, but we never should have been arrested to begin with. These violent and unlawful arrests disrupted our work and had a chilling effect on the reporting of dissent. Freedom of the press is also about the public's right to know what is happening on their streets. There needs to be a full investigation of law enforcement activities during the convention.

Friday, September 19, 2008

McClone and Big Oil: video

Here's a new video about McClone and big oil (you know, the big "Dig here, Dig now!" lie.



(If you're seeing this on Face Book, click here to see video)

Stealing the Vote - BACK

If we've learned anything over the last two presidential elections, the Republicans want to win, but are really just trying to keep the election close enough so that they can STEAL IT, if necessary.

There is already evidence that the Republican Party in Michigan - a key state - is planning to exploit the current mortgage crisis to keep Obama voters from being eligible to vote.

In response to this Robert F. Kennedy and Greg A. Palast have created a graphic comic book Take back Your Vote. This is a timely follow up to Kennedy's Rolling Stone article, "Was the 2004 Election Stolen?" It will be available soon. More info coming.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Can Bush save McClone from his foot in mouth disease?

Karen Fox asks on Op-Ed News,
Did George Bush bail out AIG to save AIG or John McCain and the Neocons?
and continues:
John McCain has stated repeatedly and today that "the fundamentals of the economy are sound." Alan Greenspan said yesterday that the economy was in the worst shape in a hundred years. Money manager Michael Lewitt wrote in Tuesday's New York Times, "AIG's collapse would be as close to an extinction-level event as the financial markets have seen since the Great Depression." Imagine if AIG had folded tomorrow and the world stock markets crashed right after Senator McCain stated that the economy was fundamentally sound. It would have been the end of Neocon reign.
It seems to me that the Bush administration (particularly Sec'y of the Treasury Paulson) are as usual flying by the seat-of-their-pants. They are making decisions on a day-to-day (maybe hour-to-hour) basis (much like the "worldwide war on terror" and Katrina). They clearly have no overall plan to undo the economic mess they have made. Although Clinton (the President) contributed to the current crisis, it has been primarily the Republican ideology of de-control, to let the corporations pretty much have their head with no reins in sight, and to undo all the oversight provisions put in place after 1929, that has brought us to this current point.

John McClone, although he denies it now, has been a strong advocate of de-control. According to wire service reports:
[McClone] supported 1999 GOP-sponsored legislation that tore down Depression-era legal walls separating commercial banks, investment banks and insurers from one another. However, President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, signed it into law.

Throughout his congressional career, the Arizona senator has usually backed cutting federal regulation of industries in the name of promoting free markets and ending government interference, which is Republican ideology.
Now, of course, as with everything else he's trying to reinvent himself as an advocate of regulation. The question is: Will voters buy this snake oil? I think people in the U.S. are smart enough to see that the potential emperor has no clothes. But we shall see.

Some random comments on J.J. Abram's Fringe

The cast of Fringe
Well the new TV season is upon us. So let's start dealing with it. Check out the review and comments that provoked these thoughts on Fringe. Fringe is J.J. Abrams new show (Tues. 9PM, Fox). Abrams created Alias and Lost, which is why it's worth thinking about. The only other show of any interest so far is HBO's True Blood (More on that later.) Anyway here are my comments:
Interesting comments.
The ick factor is part of this kind of show, so eat dinner earlier and live with it.
Almost all the comments and the review ignored the Mark Valley character (John Scott) we know he is coming back as a villain and Anna Torv's character (Olivia) will have to deal with the changes.
Both "Alias" and "Lost" started much stronger but they had their ups and downs ("Lost" still does).
I'd say, at this point, give it a chance. After about three or four more episodes we'll have a better idea of where it's going (or I won't go with it). The fact that it started so early (because of Fox's World Series schedule) leaves little else to obsess about right now. I think it has potential - but on TV potential doesn't get you very far.
One other note "Pacey" (sorry, the younger Bishop, it's really hard to resist the "Dawson's" reference) Joshua Jackson is totally miscast as a brilliant but disturbed character. Maybe even as an adult.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Sept. 23: Help Code Pink arrest George Bush

PINK POLICE SQUAD ON HAND TO ARREST THE WORLD'S #1 WAR CRIMINAL

Tuesday, September 23rd, 9 a.m.

Dag Hammarskjold Plaza (2nd Avenue & 47th Street)

George W. Bush will be addressing the U.N. General Assembly and CODEPINK NYC's Pink Police squad will be outside waiting for him. Bring signs and wear pink. We have a few extra hats, badges and whistles if you want to join the squad.

Free movie offer from Michael Moore

A message from Michael Moore:
As you may have heard, I've decided to make my new film, Slacker Uprising, available for free to everyone in the United States and Canada. It is the first time ever that a major feature-length film is debuting as a free download on the internet -- legally. I am doing this for two reasons:

1. Next year it will be 20 years since my first film, Roger & Me, so I'd like to give those of you who've supported my work over the years a thank you gift in the form of a brand new movie; and

2. I hope the release and wide distribution of this new movie will help to bring out millions of young and new voters on November 4th.

Slacker Uprising takes place in the wake of Fahrenheit 9/11, during the run-up to the 2004 election, as I traveled for 42 days across America, visiting 62 cities in a failed attempt to remove George W. Bush from office. My goal was to help turn out a record number of young voters and others who had never voted before. (That part was a success. Young adults voted in greater numbers than in any election since 18-year-olds were given the right to vote. And the youth vote was the only age group that John Kerry won.)

What I encountered during the tour and the filming was both inspiring and frightening, so I thought, hey, this might make for a funny and enlightening movie! Each night, thousands would show up to volunteer in the Slacker Army against Bush. This drove local Republicans nuts. In one state they tried to have me arrested. At two colleges, rich donors offered to donate more money to the college if they would ban me from campus. Nearly a half-dozen universities kept the Slacker Uprising tour off their campuses. But there was no stopping this movement. By the time we got to Florida, 16,000 people a night were showing up.

It was clear that young people were the ones who were going to save the day -- just as they are in this year's election.

On Tuesday, September 23rd, you will be able to stream, download, or burn a DVD of Slacker Uprising, free of charge. The distribution is being organized by Robert Greenwald's Brave New Films (they're the great people behind OUTFOXED: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism and WAL-MART: The High Cost of Low Price).

To sign up for the download of Slacker Uprising, click here. You have my blanket permission to share the movie with your friends, to set up screenings in your communities or theaters, to show it on your campuses -- all at no charge. I encourage you to rally voters with it, to raise funds for your favorite candidates, to air it on your local cable access channels or web broadcasts. You can also click here to request a free DVD of Slacker Uprising for your school or university library.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The Foreign Policy of Barack Obama: A Discussion

Thursday, September 18
7:30 pm

An Innocent Abroad?
The Foreign Policy of Barack Obama


Brecht Forum
451 West Street (bt Bank & Bethune Sts)
(212) 242-4201
Email: brechtforum at brechtforum.org

Sliding scale: $6/$10/$15
Free for Brecht Forum Subscribers

Refreshments will be available.

Tariq Ali, Norman Finkelstein, Greg Grandin, Christian Parenti, Jeremy Scahill & Marilyn B Young
Barack Obama’s tilt at the 2008 US Presidency has excited many of those on the left, tantalized by his promises to withdraw from Iraq, introduce a more egalitarian tax system and expand health care. Yet Obama’s commitment to a progressive political agenda remains highly selective. In no area is this more apparent than foreign policy where he has called for an increased military presence in Afghanistan, expressed fulsome support for Israel, and declined to end the embargo on Cuba. So how should the left relate to the global perspectives of the Obama campaign? And what would a genuinely progressive American foreign policy look like?


Tariq Ali--New Left Review, author, The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power;
Norman Finkelstein--author, Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History,;
Greg Grandin--NYU, author, Empire's Workshop: Latin America, the United States, and the Rise of the New Imperialism;
Christian Parenti--The Nation, author, Lockdown America: Police and Prisons in the Age of Crisis;
Jeremy Scahill--The Nation, author, Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army;
Marilyn B Young, (NYU, author with Lloyd Gardner of Iraq and the Lessons of Vietnam.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Gloria Steinem: "Palin: Wrong woman, wrong message"

This is an exerpt from the Los Angeles Times Opinion:

Palin: Wrong woman, wrong message
By Gloria Steinem
September 4, 2008


[Sarah]Palin's value to [McCain and] those [right-wing] patriarchs [who determine his actions, right down to opposing the Violence Against Women Act] is clear: She opposes just about every issue that women support by a majority or plurality. She believes that creationism should be taught in public schools but disbelieves global warming; she opposes gun control but supports government control of women's wombs; she opposes stem cell research but approves "abstinence-only" programs, which increase unwanted births, sexually transmitted diseases and abortions; she tried to use taxpayers' millions for a state program to shoot wolves from the air but didn't spend enough money to fix a state school system with the lowest high-school graduation rate in the nation; she runs with a candidate who opposes the Fair Pay Act but supports $500 million in subsidies for a natural gas pipeline across Alaska; she supports drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve, though even McCain has opted for the lesser evil of offshore drilling. She is Phyllis Schlafly, only younger.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Republicans bust Amy Goodman and Democracy Now staff

Last week, Democracy Now came head to head with the $50 million RNC security operation.

Last week's arrests of journalists, including Democracy Now!'s own Amy Goodman, Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar are chilling examples of how police targeted journalists during the RNC in St. Paul. As you probably know, Amy has been charged with a misdemeanor for intervening to stop the wrongful arrests of her colleagues who face pending felony charges for simply carrying out their journalistic duties.

The world watched as the Twin Cities Police trampled the first amendment. The YouTube video of Amy's arrest has been viewed more than 750,000 times. It was the most watched YouTube video on Tuesday. The story of journalist arrests and charges was covered by media outlets from the LA Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, San Francisco Guardian, Philadelphia Daily News, Denver Post, Associated Press, Editor & Publisher, Salon.com, as well as by local and public radio stations, and by political and news bloggers around the world.

To make donations to support Democracy Now