|Progressive Calendar 10.29.05||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Sat, 29 Oct 2005 05:36:53 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 10.29.05 1. Cam campaign 10.29 9am 2. NWA strike 10.29 10am/4pm 3. Energy basics 10.29 1pm Elk RiverMN 4. Indig/YouthPoets 10.29 7pm 5. KFAI/Indian 10.30 4pm 6. Wage ordinance 10.31 12:30pm 7. Vs welfare cuts 11.01 11am 8. Chante Wolf/photos 11.01 11am 9. Vs recruitment 11.01 12noon 10. Dia de losMuertos 11.01 12noon 11. War crimes trials 11.01 3:30pm 12. Climate/policy 11.01 6pm 13. Civil disobedience 11.01 6pm 14. Salon/Vietnam 11.01 6:30pm 15. Health Uhcan-mn 11.01 7pm 16. LaDuke/sustain 11.01 6:30pm 17. Saul Landau - The scandal isn't the leak, but the illegal war 18. Ingmar Lee - Stop the troops! 19. N Ramakrishnan - The decline of politics 20. Michael Donnelly - The GOP on perjury: look who's talking now 21. Stan Goff - Out of Iraq, now 22. ed - Jerk-O-Lantern (poem) --------1 of 22-------- Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 17:57:34 -0500 From: Cam Gordon <CamGordon333 [at] msn.com> Subject: Cam campaign 10.29 9am I know this is short notice but we will be very busy this weekend and any hands are welcome to join in. We will be meeting at May Day books between 9 - 10 in the morning to get organized and then going out to doorknock all day. 10 - 6 or so. You are welcome to join us anytime. Simply call my cell - 296-0579 and find out where we are. If I do not answer it is because I am talking to someone so please leave a message with your number and I can call you back. Sunday we will also be out doorknocking from about 1:30 pm until 10 pm. The last two hours we will be in student housing. So if that is your specialty let us know. 1:30 pm we will leave from the Seward Cafe. 5:00 pm we meet up at the 2nd moon 8:00 we meet a Melrose Apartments --------2 of 22-------- Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 09:59:01 -0500 From: Solidarity Committee <nwasolidaritymsp [at] hotmail.com> Subject: NWA strike 10.29 10am/4pm Just wanted to remind everyone about the AMFA hog roast and Halloween picket this Saturday afternoon. Please attend with your friends, coworkers, and families. Wear your union shirt or jacket, your work uniform, or your "I SUPPORT NORTHWEST WORKERS" t-shirts. Food will be ready at 4pm, but come earlier to socialize. After eating, everyone will proceed to the terminal for a Halloween picket for the evening rush. LOCATION: AMFA STRIKE HEADQUARTERS. The Parking Lot of the Amerisuites Hotel on the I-494 frontage road, just East of the intersection of I-494 and 34th Avenue South. ALSO - Please attend the regular solidarity committee meeting at 10am Saturday morning. Help plan and coordinate more events to support our striking brothers and sisters at NWA. The meeting is at the AMFA office, at 8101 34th Avenue South. Exit I-494 at 34th Avenue South. Proceed 3 lights to Appletree St. Turn left, proceed 1 block, and turn right into the parking lot. Signs will guide you to the meeting. --------3 of 22-------- Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 08:33:40 -0500 From: Alan Carlson <discern [at] visi.com> From: Roger Aiken <rogeraiken [at] creedproject.org> Subject: Energy basics 10.29 1pm Elk RiverMN Our CREED Energy Basics course for teachers is up and running this Fall and will include site visits to Energy Facilities that you may want to take advantage of. They are as follows:- *Saturday October 29*: 1300 hrs NRG's RDF Waste Processing Facility at Elk River. 1415 hrs GRE's RDF Fuel Electrical Generating Plant at Elk River. *Saturday November 12:* 1300 hrs Xcel Energy's Highbridge Coal Fired Electrical Generating Plant in Saint Paul. If you would like to take advantage of any of these organized tours, each of about one hour's duration, please let me know as soon as possible so that I can advise the tour guides of the number of people who will be coming. Roger G. Aiken Lead Instructor/Newsletter Ed. CREED Project 1589 Hollywood Court Falcon Heights, MN 55108-2130 (651) 644-8318 rogeraiken [at] creedproject.org --------4 of 22-------- Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 10:24:57 -0500 From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Indig/YouthPoets 10.29 7pm SATURDAY, 29 October The Land Slam Curated by Wastewin Gonzalez 7pm At Pangea World Theater Studio // 711 West Lake Street, Suite 101, Minneapolis FREE and open to the public! Join Wastewin Gonzalez and Bobby Wilson in an evening of slam poetry by indigenous youth surrounding issues of land to kick off our 2005 Indigenous Voices Series! Please visit our website for more information... <http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=cffszpbab.0.hqfrrhbab.mukgrhbab.1112&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.pangeaworldtheater.org> --------5 of 22-------- From: Chris Spotted Eagle <chris [at] spottedeagle.org> Subject: KFAI/Indian 10.30 4pm KFAI's Indian Uprising for Oct. 30th NATIVE AMERICAN INDIAN SONGS SUNG AND TAUGHT BY DR. LOUIS W. BALLARD, a Quapaw Indian of Cherokee and French/Scottish ancestry is a preeminent Native American composer and music educator. His works are performed regularly by major symphony orchestras, choral societies, chamber music ensembles, and ballet companies. He is also a teacher and mentor for students of music. Among Dr. Ballard's most frequently performed works are: Scenes From Indian Life for symphony orchestra; Incident At Wounded Knee for chamber orchestra; Katchina Dances for cello and piano; Why The Duck Has A Short Tail for narrator and symphony orchestra; Ritmo Indio for woodwind quintet; Cacega Ayuwipi and Music For The Earth And Sky for Native American instruments and standard percussion including numerous other compositions. Native American Indian Songs Taught by Louis W. Ballard include a Guidebook with Two Audio CD's. Contact New Southwest Music Publications (bibliog., cultural notes, photos, compositions, resources), 110 pp. P.O. Box 4552, Santa Fe, NM 87502-4552. The book and CD's are a "new and improved upgrade." Southwest, "an Indian-owned and operated music publishing company," was founded in 1970 by Louis and Ruth Ballard "to meet the special needs of music educators and aficionados of Native American music." www.nswmp.com, 505-986-3984. * * * * Indian Uprising is a one-half hour Public & Cultural Affairs radio program for, by, and about Indigenous people & all their relations, broadcast each Sunday at 4pm over KFAI 90.3 FM Minneapolis and 106.7 FM St. Paul. Current programs are archived online after broadcast at www.kfai.org, for two weeks. Click Program Archives and scroll to Indian Uprising. --------6 of 22-------- Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 01:54:27 GMT Subject: Wage ordinance 10.31 12:30pm Minneapolis Living Wage Ordinance -Take Action Monday! The proposed Minneapolis Living Wage Ordinance is moving forward with solid support from many City Council Members. The first true test of support for the ordinance will be Monday, October 31 at a Ways and Means committee meeting. Join the Living Wages YES! coalition for a press conference immediately before the public hearing, and then help us pack the public hearing! It's time to make your voice heard! Join us at City Hall on Monday, October 31 12:30pm -Living Wage Coalition Rally/Press Conference - City Hall Room 319 1:30pm - Ways and Means Committee Public Hearing - City Hall Room 317 The proposed Living Wage Ordinance would strengthen the current policy in these ways: -Raise the definition of a Living Wage to 130% of the federal poverty limit ($12.09/hr - the level at which a family of four qualifies for food stamps). -Applies to businesses who are awarded city contracts or business subsidies. -Make it a strong, enforceable ordinance with penalties for violations and strong enforcement mechanisms. The Minneapolis City Council has been generally supportive of the Living Wage Proposal, but our opponents are starting to turn up the heat. It is important that city leaders hear from constituents that want to pass a strong, enforceable, Living Wage Ordinance! Call and email your Council Member and Mayor Rybak and urge them to support the Living Wage Ordinance: Ward 1, Paul Ostrow (612) 673-2201, paul.ostrow [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 2, Paul Zerby (612) 673-2202, paul.zerby [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 3, Don Samuels (612) 673-2203, don.samuels [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 4, Barb Johnson (612) 673-2204, barbara.johnson [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 5, Natalie Johnson-Lee (612) 673-2205, natalie.johnsonlee [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 6, Dean Zimmerman (612) 673-2206, dean.zimmerman [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 7, Lisa Goodman (612) 673-2207, lisa.goodman [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 8, Robert Lilligren (612) 673-2208, robert.lilligren [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 9, Gary Schiff (612) 673-2209, gary.schiff [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 10, Dan Niziolek (612) 673-2210, dan.niziolek [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 11, Scott Benson (612) 673-2211, scott.benson [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 12, Sandra Colvin-Roy (612) 673-2212, sandra.colvin.roy [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Ward 13, Barrett Lane, (612) 673-2213, barrett.lane [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Mayor RT Rybak (612) 673-2100, rt [at] minneapolis.org The Living Wages YES! Campaign is supported by the Minneapolis Central Labor Union Council, SEIU MN State Council, AFSCME Council 5, MN ACORN, MFT Local #59, Teamsters DRIVE, Progressive Minnesota, ISAIAH, UNITE HERE #17, Jewish Community Action, Twin Cities Coalition of Labor Union Women, Twin Cities Religion and Labor Network, Confederation of Somali Communities in Minnesota, Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis Office for Social Justice, JOBS NOW Coalition, Minnesota Association of Professional Employees, Minneapolis DFL Party, Green Party of MN - 5th Congressional District, MPIRG, and the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability. --------7 of 22-------- From: Welfare Rights Cmte II <welfarerights [at] qwest.net> Subject: Vs SSI welfare cuts 11.01 11am Picket to Commemorate Cap on 'SSI Penalty'! Tuesday, Nov. 1, 11am-12noon Hennepin County Welfare Office (Century Plaza) 300 S 12th St, Minneapolis For more info call 612-822-8020 For the past two legislative sessions (2004 and 2005), the Welfare Rights Committee and the MN Welfare Rights Coalition had the "Fund Human Needs, Not Corporate Greed" bill, which closed corporate tax loopholes and used that money to undo the $125 SSI, along with many other cuts that were made in the 2003 legislative session. November 1 represents a PARTIAL victory: The most the state can cut from our families for the SSI penalty is $125, no matter how many in the household are on SSI. Up until now, a family with two disabled family members was being cut $250, three disabled family members $375, etc. We will be commemorating the day that many families who are coping with disabilities will be getting back some of the money that Pawlenty and House Republicans stole in 2003. We will be picketing because the SSI Cut Cap beginning on Nov. 1 represents only a partial victory, and we will be declaring that we will keep fighting until all the cuts imposed by this state are undone. The "SSI penalty" was the biggest welfare cut in MN history. It affects poor families on MFIP (Minnesota's welfare program for families) who also have disabled family members on SSI. This horrible, unfair and unjust attack counted the disabled people's federal SSI against the rest of the family's MFIP grant. The state counted $125 of each person's SSI money per month against rest of the family. This put disabled SSI recipients and their families in double and triple bind. The feds say the SSI money is to be used only by the disabled person, not by anyone else. Meanwhile, however, the rest of family, who are seeing their sub-survival cash assistance being cut $125, $250 or $375 per month (MFIP grants are already over 50% below the poverty level), are being tacitly forced by the state to use the disabled people's SSI grants to get by. Families coping with disabilities have huge hurdles in getting decent paying jobs, so this cut is long-term condemnation to extreme poverty for many. For the past 2 years over 7,000 families have been suffering with the SSI cut! A step in the right direct has been made to put a cap on the "SSI CUT" but that is still not enough. One penny taken from the MFIP cash grant it is too much and we are calling on all politicians to completely undo the "SSI CUT" and every single cut that was made in the 2003 Legislative session that effects poor and working in Minnesota. This is a huge victory when as poor families we have been facing brutal right wing attacks on the poor for years! Now we have to go back and DEMAND that every dime of cuts be undone! Welfare Rights Committee 310 E 38th St #207, Mpls MN 55409 ph:612-822-8020 fx: 612-824-3604 primary email - welfarerightsmn [at] yahoo.com secondary email welfarerights [at] qwest.net --------8 of 22-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Chante Wolf/photos 11.01 11am Generations for PEACE During the Month of November Monday-Saturday 11am-3pm At St. Martin's Table 2001 Riverside Av Minneapolis A presentation of the artist's story from Air Force-warrior to Veteran for Peace-keeper, November 11th, 7pm, St. Martin's Table. The fortress of Empire has never kept the fearful safe from truth and human love. --------9 of 22------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Vs recruitment 11.01 12noon Tuesday, 11/1, noon, street theater outside Stadium Village military recruitment office at Oak and Washington, U of M, Minneapolis. Wear orange Guantanamo jumpsuits or Abu Ghraib soapbox man poncho, read statistics or poetry. FFI: megbabylon [at] hotmail.com or 612-251-1746. --------10 of 22-------- From: Kelly O'Brien <obrie136 [at] umn.edu> Subject: Dia de los Muertos 11.01 12noon U of M Groups to Present Día de los Muertos Procession Recognition of political and social challenges preserves and informs traditional ritual Tuesday November 1, 12noon-1:30pm At various locations on east bank campus, beginning at Klaeber Court, 320 16th Ave SE Who: Representatives from Department of Chicano Studies, Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, and La Raza Student Cultural Center Free and open to the general public FFI: Department of Chicano Studies, 612-624-6309 Three University of Minnesota units who serve the Latino community are organizing a unique celebration of Día de los Muertos on Tuesday, November 1. The Department of Chicano Studies, the Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, and La Raza Student Cultural Center will be participating in a procession and setting up altars in the buildings in which they are housed to commemorate people, organizations and opportunities that have departed recently, Mexican immigrants who die crossing the border into the U.S., the Dream Act (a proposed state law that would have improved college access for immigrant students), and the impact of the U.S.-Iraq war on the Latino community. Each of the colorful altars in the procession has been built around a particular theme: Violence on the Border, the Impact of War on Latino Communities, and the Challenges of Educational Access. Alongside these issues are commemorations of loved ones who have departed. The procession will include costumed participants and the public is invited to join in and bring a memento and/or light a candle to a loved one and place it on the altar as a way of honoring their memory and evoking their presence. The schedule for the Dia de los Muertos procession: 12:00: Opening remarks, presentation of altar's topic, Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, Klaeber Court, 320 16th Ave SE 12:10: Procession to Department of Chicano Studies, Scott Hall, 72 Pleasant Street SE 12:25: Presentation of altar's topic at Chicano Studies 12:35: Procession to La Raza Student Cultural Center (LRSCC), 211 Coffman Union, 300 Washington Avenue SE 12:50: Presentation of altar's topic at LRSCC 1:00: Closing remarks 1:00-1:30: Reception (LRSCC) --------11 of 22-------- From: humanrts [at] umn.edu Subject: War crimes trials 11.01 3:30pm November 1 - Lecture: Dachau to Darfur: Arresting Impunity With International Justice. 3:30pm You are cordially invited to a lecture and an exhibition at the University of Minnesota Law School in commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the war crimes trials at Dachau and Nuremberg. The University of Minnesota Law Library Distinguished Lecture will be delivered by Professor William A. Schabas, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at the National University of Ireland, Galway. His lecture is entitled: "Dachau to Darfur: Arresting Impunity with International Justice." The lecture will be followed by a reception and an exhibition. The centerpiece of the exhibition will be a unique collection of photographs and documents of Horace R. Hansen, a native Minnesotan who served as a prosecutor at Dachau. Frank Berman, Regent of the University of Minnesota, will deliver remarks at the reception. Alex M. Johnson, Jr., Dean of the University of Minnesota, Joan S. Howland, Associate Dean, and David Weissbrodt, Regents Professor, hope that you will be able to join us for this very special event. Please RSVP to: Benita Johnson at 612-625-5526; b-john [at] umn.edu. If you have questions about this event, please contact: Katherine Hedin at 612-625- 7323; k-hedi [at] umn.edu. Location: Lockhart Hall, University of Minnesota Law School --------12 of 22-------- From: Shanai Matteson <matt0423 [at] umn.edu> Subject: Climate/policy 11.01 6pm Bell Museum of Natural History Cafe Scientifique: Climate and Policy Tuesday November 1, 6-8pm Varsity Theater, Dinkytown Free. Participants must be 18 and older to attend. Join us for a special Cafe Scientifique on climate and public policy and help raise funds for hurricane relief. Learn about research into recent weather phenomena, from the devastating hurricanes in the gulf coast to a record tornado season here in the midwest. What do these weather patterns say about our dynamic climate and how is public policy addressing climate change and its impact on people and environments? Audiences will be able to contribute to organizations involved with environmental clean-up and restoration in hurricane damaged areas of the Gulf Coast. With Mark Seeley, University of Minnesota Climatologist and frequent contributor to Minnesota Public Radio's Morning Edition, and Ken Keller, Director of the Center for Science, Technology and Public Policy at the University of Minnesota's Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. Cafe Scientifique is a monthly forum for science and culture hosted by the Bell Museum of Natural History. www.bellmuseum.org Shanai.Matteson [at] bellmuseum.org Phone 612/624-3808 Fax 612/626-7704 --------13 of 22-------- From: Jess Sundin <jess [at] antiwarcommittee.org> Subject: Civil disobedience 11.01 6pm Civil Disobedience Training Tuesday 11/ 1 @ 6pm @ U of M La Raza Student Cultural Center, second floor of Coffman Memorial Union, 300 Washington Ave. Mpls. Interested in taking the next step to oppose the war? Hear why civil disobedience is an effective tactic, and learn the skills necessary to carry out a successful act of civil disobedience. Sponsored by the AWC. --------14 of 22-------- From: patty guerrero <pattypax [at] earthlink.net> Subject: Salon/Vietnam 11.01 6:30pm Nov 1, the guests will be Rebecca and Michael Thompson who will tell us about their recent trip to Vietnam w/a group of Macalester College Alumni. Their illustrated talk is about what Vietnam means to Americans in 2005, 30 years after the end of the war that deeply affected an entire generation. The title of their talk will be "Vietnam is not a war, but a country." Salons are held (unless otherwise noted in advance): Tuesdays, 6:30 to 8:30 pm. Mad Hatter's Tea House, 943 W 7th, St Paul, MN Salons are free but donations encouraged for program and treats. Call 651-227-3228 or 651-227-2511 for information. --------15 of 22-------- From: joel m. albers <joel [at] uhcan-mn.org> Subject: Health Uhcan-mn 11.01 7pm The MN Universal Health Care Action Network Action Meeting, TUESDAY, November 1, 7pm Walker Church Basement, 3104 16th ave S.(near Lake Str and Bloomington ave in Minneapolis). Open community mtg. Given the Health Care Crisis ( i just got back from an AIDS rally about this), there's no more opportune time to organize than now ! Signifying the end of an era in generous health care benefits, GM just cut $1 billion from it's employees' (UAW) health care contract. Ford's UAW may be next. Let's have a conversation with Ford workers here in St Paul. Read on. Items: 1. Literature distribution and conversation at workplaces during November, Employee Open Enrollment month for most employer-based health insurance in MN. We have a new leaflet on the real way health care benefits should be organized: i.e. forming one large common pool, w/ comprehensive, uniform benefits, based on intergenerational solidarity. 2. Health Care, Not Stadiums. We are in contact w/ 2 groups in Blaine, where the new Vikings stadium is to be built. Public polls have soundly rejected public financing of stadiums only to enrich the rich team owners and enormously wealthy players. At the same time polls show the public favors public financing single-payer universal health care for Minnesota. 3. Media Campaign: We need artists, graphic designers, photographers, videographers, journalists, thespians etc to help us design ed and outreach materials and other ways get the single-payer health care for all message out, and to counter and respin industry propaganda. 4. Reportbacks Bring your ideas, develop your skills. Ours imaginations are the limit to what we can do. Bring a friend. The MN Universal Health Care Action Network www.uhcan-mn.org , 612-384-0973, joel [at] uhcan-mn.org --------16 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: LaDuke/sustainability 11.01 6:30pm Tuesday, 11/1, doors at 6:30 pm, Winona LaDuke speaks at 7:30 on "Visions of Sustainability" at MN Alliance of Peacemakers annual Celebration of Peace, Hennepin Ave United Methodist Church, 511 Groveland (at Lyndale), Minneapolis. $5 to 15 sliding. www.wapm.org [LaDuke ran with Nader in 2000. Then she endorsed less-and-less progressive Dem Wellstone in 2002, and anti-progressive Dem Kerry in 2004. I liked her better 5 years ago. -ed] --------17 of 22------- Forgeries, Lies and Cover-ups The Scandal isn't the Leak, But the Illegal War By SAUL LANDAU CounterPunch October 27, 2005 "Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive!" --Walter Scott The conspiracy that bubbles around Judith Miller protecting a source -- whose name she couldn't remember -- and Robert Novak using his column to out undercover CIA operative Valerie Plame should soon evaporate. The next step should lead Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald to the heart of the matter: a much more pernicious conspiracy designed to mislead the United States into war with Iraq. The crime to name a covert CIA official pales in comparison with conspiring to lead the nation to war under false pretenses. Novak served as White House mastermind Karl Rove's press poodle. He punished former Ambassador Joseph Wilson by revealing his wife's name and ending her career on Juuly 14, 2003, eight days after Plame's husband revealed in a NY Times op-ed (July 6, 2003) the fraudulence of Bush Administration claims that Iraq had tried to purchase African uranium for its nuclear weapons program. Instead of following the logic of Wilson's story, that the White House had conspired to lead the country into an unjust war, the media focused on the leak of a CIA' official's name. Reporters should have seen the Wilson story as one piece of a larger puzzle. They should have read Wilson's Times op ed and other stories as an opening to look for who had motive to forge a document and plant it, so that the media would get properly "spun" and accept this forged paper as proof of Saddam's perfidy. Now, it begins to emerge that the White House undertook a major effort to mislead and manipulate the media and U.S. public opinion in general in order to get support for an unjust war. In February 2002, the CIA had dispatched Wilson to investigate the claim based on this document that Iraq intended to buy nuclear material. When he returned from Niger, he reported that the evidence lacked credibility, but both Bush and Cheney refused to acknowledge his refutation. So he went public in the NY Times. The unraveling of the Valerie Plame affair is but a step toward exposing this truly epic scam. Beyond compromising the identity of a CIA officer, the Bush administration had carried out what former intelligence official Larry Johnson called "a classic 'covert action' program against the citizens of the United States." Part of this involved planting stories to "shape public opinion." Apparently, one member of the Coalition of the Willing, Italy under the right wing Berlusconi, agreed to fabricate reports dated in 2001 and 2002 that Iraq had reached an agreement with Niger to buy 500 tons of yellowcake uranium. When news of these reports supposedly reached Cheney's office, the Vice President requested that the Agency check the story. Thus, the CIA dispatched Wilson to verify the report in Africa. The fabricator apparently did not expect Wilson to blow the whistle on them and report that the evidence on Saddam's nuclear program lacked credibility. . Nor did they conceive that a loyal public servant such as Wilson with a wife in the Agency would go public. By mid 2002, the Bush campaign to invade Iraq was in full gear. Indeed, memos between Bush and Blair validated what Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski witnessed in the Office of Special Planning. Make up the facts and then report them as "intelligence." "If one is seeking the answers to why peculiar bits of 'intelligence' found sanctity in a presidential speech, or why the post-Saddam occupation has been distinguished by confusion and false steps, one need look no further than the process inside the Office of the Secretary of Defense," wrote Kwiatkowski after she retired from the OSP position. July 31, 2003 by the Ohio Beacon Journal She meant that top Rumsfeld aide, Douglas Feith, deliberately altered the methods of intelligence communication that the Pentagon routinely sent to State and CIA. Indeed, Kwiatkowski wrote that she "witnessed several cases of staff officers being told not to contact their counterparts at State or the NSC because that particular decision would be processed through a different channel." Like a virulent virus, the Cheney gang took over the OSP in what State Department Chief of Staff Lawrence Wilkerson called "a cabal between the vice-president of the United States, Richard Cheney, and the secretary of defense, Donald Rumsfeld, on critical issues that made decisions that the bureaucracy did not know were being made" (MSNBC Oct 20, 2005). Wilkerson charged them with "undermining democracy" (NY Times Oct 19) when they decided to make a case for war against Iraq, they had to invent stories. One of the scariest scenarios that Bush and Cheney presented to the public involved Saddam's nuclear threat. Apparently, one of Rumsfeld's aides persuaded his Italian intelligence cohorts to make up documents suggesting that Iraq was trying to buy weapons grade uranium form Niger. Despite Wilson's report to the contrary and the doubt raised by veteran intelligence professionals, Cheney reiterated the Niger-Iraq connection accusation. On March 24, 2002, he appeared three times on TV shows and repeated that he knew Iraq was actively pursuing nuclear-weapons production. Cheney had made nukes the center of his anti-Saddam argument. His staff apparently overruled State and CIA officials and insisted that the nuclear accusation remain in Bush's January 2003 State of the Union speech the now tarnished 16 words. Subsequently, Bush pointed the finger of blame at the CIA for giving him poor intelligence, but his own "cabal" had manufactured the very evidence that Bush later blamed for misleading him. The outing of Plame appears as part of what Larry Johnson called a larger "pattern of manipulation and deceit." Judy Miller emerged as another key actor in the scenario designed to hype the war and fool the people. lOn July 8, two days after Wilson revealed the hype over Iraq's nuclear weapons, Miller had a hush hush meeting with a top Cheney aide The still-classified National Intelligence Estimate, Libby told her, 'had firmly concluded that Iraq was seeking nuclear weapons.' According to a Newsweek web exclusive, Oct 19 2005 (Isikoff and Hosenbell), Libby leaked to Miller an NIE report that stated that Iraq planned to by uranium for a nuclear bomb. "My notes show that Mr. Libby consistently steered our conversation back to the administration's nuclear claims," Miller wrote (NY Times October 16, 2005) "His main theme echoed that of other senior officials: that contrary to Mr. Wilson's criticism, the administration had had ample reason to be concerned about Iraq's nuclear capabilities based on the regime's history of weapons development, its use of unconventional weapons and fresh intelligence reports." The intelligence veterans remained skeptical. How could Saddam possibly reconstruct such an effort in the midst of sanctions and bombing and after seven years (1991-98) in which the UN Weapons Inspection team had destroyed almost all of his capacity? Indeed, counterevidence seriously outweighed the report and Cheney's repeated claims. Thanks to the prolonged investigation over the Plame case, some members of the media and the rest of the public have regained their bearings. Some reporters might even recall that right after Novak published Plame's name, Bush promised publicly that he would fire any staff involved. In July, he weakened that threat to: "If someone committed a crime they will no longer work in my administration." In fact, Bush may have privately reprimanded Karl Rove. But as the prosecutor kept bringing back Rove and Libby to the Grand Jury, rumors began to circulate that Cheney might resign because witnesses would implicate him in the leak scandal and that Bush himself might get tainted because he participated in conversations related to the Plame outing. Ironically, the conspirators lost control of one small piece of the plot to take the nation to war: the leaking of a name to punish a truth-teller and intimidate other potential whistle blowers. Bush continues to act as if none of this concerns him and the justice of his war effort. The next time he says we're going to "stay the course" in Iraq, the Democrats should respond by claiming that Bush wants to stay the course of total failure and pay for it with the lives and maimed bodies of young men and women. As adversity rains on the Republicans, their audacity gradually transforms itself into defensiveness and silence. Frustratingly, the Democrats cannot seem to avail themselves of Bush's deep problems and declining popularity. He fell well below 40% in late October. The Democrats need to agree on a declaration calling the Iraq war wrong. They seem unable to say that Bush misled them into voting for the war and, most importantly, that the nation should immediately withdraw its armed forces. Saul Landau is a fellow of the Institute for Policy Studies. --------18 of 22-------- There's No Glory or Honor in Iraq Stop the Troops! By INGMAR LEE CounterPunch October 27, 2005 So there's maybe a third of all Americans who are still wavering behind George W. Bush and his murderous attack, invasion, occupation and massacre on-going in Iraq. (It never ever was a war) And half of all Americans voted Democrat in the last election - for a brain-dead, visionless party that's got no intention of stopping the gruesome, losing atrocity which has slaughtered more than 100,000 people to date. And then there's the American Peace Movement, currently rallying around the theme, "Support the Troops - Bring them Home!" That pretty much covers the American political spectrum. Currently, all across the USA, peaceniks are conducting vigils to commemorate 2000 dead soldiers. Here's Medea Benjamin and Gayle Brandeis in their current Commondreams post, "2000 Too Many": "The grim milestone of the death of the 2000th American soldier should be a time for national reflection. As the families of our soldiers know all too well, 2000 is not just a number. These are 2000 human beings we've lost; 2000 people with names, with grieving families; 2000 people with hopes and dreams that will never be realized. Let's honor them by stopping more soldiers from dying. Let's honor them by giving Iraqis a chance to run their own country. Let's honor them by bringing their buddies home." The American military, from top to bottom is a hideous blight on our planet. There are no innocents in this massive killing machine. There's no 'honour' in volunteering for the worlds largest terrorist organization, now under the command of the deceitful, criminal cabal led by George W. Bush. American soldiers are well trained to kill, and obviously, to torture, and they go off to Iraq all of their own 'free will." They know that they will kill, and that they may die. There will not be any "honour," or "glory" for these stupid youngsters who continue to volunteer themselves for 'duty' in Bush's appalling adventure. These soldiers, including the 2000 dead, by taint of their volunteer status, are each personally responsible for the murder of 100,000 innocent Iraqi's. True, there are several heroic, courageous and righteous American soldiers - namely Brandon Hughey, Jeremy Hinzman and others who have revolted against the criminal, inhuman behaviour they were expected to participate in. When will all those 'Gold Star Families' start recognizing that these are the only true heroes coming out of the USA military? The idea that you can "Support the Troops" and be against what they do in the world is simply irreconcilable. The terrorist mastermind of their deaths says exactly the same thing every day: "We've lost some of our nation's finest men and women in the war on terror," Bush said. "Each of these patriots left a legacy that allowed generations of their fellow Americans to enjoy the blessings of liberty." Some people are finding similarities between the Iraq and Viet Nam 'quagmires,' perhaps most glaringly seen in their common grass-roots defeat of the American military behemoth. But there's a single fundamental difference between these two heinous crimes against humanity which nobody is talking about. In Viet Nam, young Americans were forced to participate in the slaughter, whereas in Iraq those troops all go there voluntarily. In Viet Nam, more than a few times, courageous soldiers shot their own commanders, rather than comply with some atrocious order. I dreamed recently that the worlds most humoungous terrorist weapon of mass destruction, the aircraft-carrier USS Abraham Lincoln had been sunk by inside mutineers. For those who love what America is supposed to stand for, that would be a supreme act of military heroism. The American Peace Movement would do well to bite the bullet and stop adding to the litany of phoney glorifications heaped on those who are 'serving,' and those who have died in the American attacks on Iraq and Afghanistan. They need to put out the message that joining the American military is a vulgar, stupid offence against humanity. The soldiers should be actively discouraged from participating in the first place. [Amen - ed] Ingmar Lee is wracked with guilt and outrage over his Canadian governments participation in the invasions, occupations and massacres currently underway in Afghanistan and Haiti. He can be reached at ingmarz [at] gmail.com --------19 of 22-------- The Decline of Politics Waiting for Fitzgerald By NIRANJAN RAMAKRISHNAN CounterPunch October 27, 2005 "You are like the prisoner sawing away at the bars on the little cell window so intently that he does not notice the door has long been wide open." --George Bernard Shaw (paraphrased) "Will there be one indictment or five?" "How high will he go?" "Has Hadley had it?" "Will Rove get his deserts, finally?" There is the wee undercurrent of concern that it might all end up in a damp squib. But by and large, an atmosphere singed with nervous excitement hovers over Washington. Among Democrats there is subdued energy, above the hum of a snore but certainly nowhere near fever-pitch. Whatever Prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald delivers, they know, this regime is damaged goods. The march of events has produced what they did not, frozen by fear of bad timing, even dare dream attempt. But that doesn't mean they will not relish this moment, with all the self-importance of a broken timepiece at one of the two times each day when it looks like a winner. Who would have guessed that the non-strategy of petrified silence would yield such results! The nineteenth century saw the brief rise of the American Party, also called the 'Know Nothings'. The twenty first has unveiled a new force, the "Do Nothings", once known as the Democratic Party. Warm though it may hearts long distressed by the extent of domestic and international mayhem wrought by the confluence of incompetence, low cunning and habitual dishonesty that so characterizes the Bush-Cheney administration, the hubbub over the Fitzgerald investigation only highlights the arteriosclerosis of a polity in general decline. Consider this anamoly: the whole question of the Bush administration's culpability on the Iraq war, it would seem, turns on one prosecutor's verdict. That's right. The political class is relying on this lone individual's honesty and courage to call to account the brazen hijacking of its prerogatives, something it itself had neither will nor ability to check. This is akin to a Government of the United States, fearful of confronting Al Capone, rejoicing that some low-end official was finally able to book the gangster on a technicality. Whether we are Republicans or Democrats, do we need a government bureaucrat to prove the Bush administration committed war crimes (all we have to ask is who started the Iraq war)? To use Condi Rice's own metaphor, we are happy to turn a blind eye to the series of mushroom clouds of the Bush years, as we stay glued to Fitzgerald's search for the 'smoking gun'! It is hardly 'Breaking News' that the Bush administration will stop at nothing in its lowly pursuits. Why does anyone need Fitzgerald's report to conclude this? Is Florida 2000 not enough of a demonstration? Well before 9-11, Bush's first move on grabbing office was to seal off presidential papers -- including those of past presidents. No one yet knows why. Bush, Cheney and Co. jumped at 9-11, not to unify the country with a call to sacrifice and greatness, but to declare open season on the Constitution, to seize the opportunity for private plunder, to extinguish freedoms, and to concentrate political power in its hands. Its instincts are neither conservative nor liberal -- they are, if anything ,anti-political, seeking the union of unfettered executive power with unquestioned crony capitalism, in a word, fascist. The prosecutor's probe will not erase the fact of twenty nine Senate Democrats voting for the Iraq war resolution. It will not nullify presidential candidate John Kerry's sheepish reassertion of his vote two years later, long after it had become clear that the WMD claim was a lie. Nor will anyone with an IQ over 80 be persuaded, by the manner in which Democratic senators voted for Condoleezza Rice's promotion to Secretary of State, or their "I think you're the real deal" encomiums to Alberto "Torture Memo" Gonzales, that they have any sense of right and wrong. Nothing if not consistent, last Sunday found Charles Schumer saying he would still vote for the Iraq resolution, knowing everything he now knows, three years later. No prominent Democrat who voted for the War resolution has since said it was a mistake, or even that he was misled by the White House. The thunderclap of Democratic silence from Congress on Iraq (excepting perhaps Cynthia McKinney and a few others who have had the conscience to seek immediate withdrawal) speaks as loudly as anything Fitzgerald's indictments can proclaim about "Scooter" Libby or "Looter" Cheney. Republicans too should know by now that the Bush administration is as corrosive of conservative or libertarian causes as it is of Democratic ones. When the Bush-Cheney administration has trashed every traditional goal of conservatism - fiscal order, economic nationalism, educational excellence, and made lethal inroads into individual privacy and personal liberty, how long will it take for conservatives and libertarians to conclude how disastrous this administration is to their respective movements? For all his reputed brilliance, Fitzgerald cannot eclipse the fact that Bush was reelected by America, after failing to defend the country on 9-11, after taking us to unprovoked war, after promoting detention without trial, after sanctioning torture, after kicking off an unremitting orgy of death and degradation. These stains will remain long after the moths are done with the infamous blue dress. At best, Fitzgerald may provide proof of the administration's cynicism, but it is not proof that has ever been lacking. What is vanished is courage, all up and down the political establishment. The old Tamil saying has it right: one can wake up a person from the soundest sleep, but it is impossible to wake someone pretending to sleep. Fitzgerald's findings may yet cramp the Administration's final years, but by turning what should be a political judgement into a technical one, showing up the cravenness of the entire political establishment. Imagine for a minute that Fitzgerald finds no evidence of any wrongdoing. Does that change much? After all, it is clear that Cheney knew about Valerie Plame. Did he or did he not tell Bush when the story broke? If not, shouldn't Bush fire him? And if he did...? A few days back, the New York Daily News had a story about Bush chewing out Rove shortly after the story broke, when it became known to him that Rove had been involved in the Valerie Plame matter. Basically, Bush did nothing to seek out and punish whoever had leaked out a national security secret. Why then have the members of Congress, Republicans and Democrats, not called Bush on the carpet even on this specific matter which, from all accounts, is a dereliction of national security? Why are they not, even now, clamoring for impeachment hearings? By failing to resist (or pretending not to notice, or colluding with) the central tendency of the Bush presidency to reduce politics to business by other means, the political class continues to fail America. Every politician who does not daily indict this administration in word and deed, and call for the impeachment of both top figures, is as culpable as the Administration itself, to use Bush's own 'for us or against us' dictum. So why is this riveting the country's attention? Because the story follows the familiar theme so beloved of Hollywood and John Grisham -- the lone hero struggling against a sinister web of evil, where everything comes down to one last battle on the edge of the cliff. Now playing at a TV set near you: Fitzgerald Against the Machine. But when institutions have been hollowed out, consigning checks on unbridled power to hopes of individual heroism and goodness, we have doubly arrived, to the promised land of the Reagan revolution, and at the doorstep of the third world. Niranjan Ramakrishnan is a writer living on the West Coast. His blog is at http://njn-blogogram.blogspot.com. He can be reached at njn_2003 [at] yahoo.com. --------20 of 22-------- The GOP on Perjury Look Who's Talking Now By MICHAEL DONNELLY CounterPunch October 27, 2005 With the coming indictments of at least some administration factotums for lying to a federal Grand Jury if not for the underlying crimes, it's telling to note how deeply members of Congress feel about perjury by government officials and how much damage they feel this serious crime has caused the Republic. With such insights and commitment to the rule of law, this dark chapter may soon be put behind us. As the Indictments near, the Senate Majority Leader weighs in: "To not remove (the perjurers) for grand jury perjury lowers uniquely the Constitution's removal standard. I will have no part in the creation of a constitutional double-standard to benefit the President. He is not above the law. If an ordinary citizen committed these crimes, he would go to jail." (1) A top GOP member of the Judiciary Committee added: "Should he be impeached? Very quickly; the hardest decision I think I will ever makeI would hope that if a Republican person had done all this that some of us would've went (sic) over and told him, 'You need to leave office.'" (2) The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee chimed in: "But when circumstances require you to participate in a formal court proceeding and under oath mislead the parties and the court by lying, that is a public act and deserves public sanction. Perjury is a crime with a five-year penalty." (3) Another long-serving member of the Judiciary Committee said: "What is on trial here is the truth and the rule of law. Our failure to bring (government officials) to account for lying under oath and preventing the courts from administering equal justice under law, will cause a cancer to be present in our society for generations. I want those parents who ask me the questions, to be able to tell their children that even if you are president of the United States, if you lie when sworn "to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth," you will face the consequences of that action, even when you don't accept the responsibility for them. (4) A GOP member of the Senate Intelligence Committee noted: "There can be no shading of right and wrong. The complicated currents that have coursed through this process are many. But after stripping away the underbrush of legal technicalities and nuance, I find that the (officials) abused his sacred power by lying and obstructing justice. How can parents instill values and morality in their children? How can educators teach our children? How can the rule of law for every American be applied equally if we have two standards of justice in America--one for the powerful and the other for the rest of us?" (5) Another GOP Senator had this to say: "Something needs to be said that is a clear message that our rule of law is intact and the standards for perjury and obstruction of justice are not gray. And I think it is most important that we make that statement and that it be on the record for history. I very much worry that with the evidence that we have seen that grand juries across America are going to start asking questions about what is obstruction of justice, what is perjury. And I don't want there to be any lessening of the standard. Because our system of criminal justice depends on people telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. That is the lynch pin of our criminal justice system and I don't want it to be faded in any way." (7) And, finally, the Senate Majority Whip states: "Perjury and obstruction hammer away at the twin pillars of our legal system: truth and justice. Every witness in every deposition is required to raise his or her right hand and swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help them God. Every witness in every grand jury proceeding and in every trial is required to raise his or her right hand and swear to tell the truth. Every official declaration filed with the court is stamped with the express affirmation that the declaration is true. In the words of our nation's first Supreme Court Chief Justice, John Jay: 'if oaths should cease to be held sacred, our dearest and most valuable rights would become insecure.' " (6) Of course, the perjury in question was Bill Clinton's lying about sex. And, what are they now saying about the far, far, more serious lying about and subsequent lying to cover-up the mistruths that led us into war and the punitive outing of a covert CIA operative's name. Here's what the neocon's have to say now that it's top Republicans obstructing justice and lying to Grand Juries; "I certainly hope that if there is going to be an indictment that says something happened, that it is an indictment on a crime and not some perjury technicality where they couldn't indict on the crime and so they go to something just to show that their two years of investigation was not a waste of time and taxpayer dollars. So they go to something that trips someone up because they said something in the first grand jury and then maybe they found new information or they forgot something and they tried to correct that in a second grand jury." (7) Apparently forgetting his own defense of the detentions at Guantanamo and elsewhere, not to mention the damage done to the Wilsons' lives, one senator now shouts; "If you can prove a case against Karl Rove, let the legal system do it, otherwise just shut up, because you're ruining a guy's reputation before anything has happened." (2) Finally, RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman adds: "It's disappointing that once again, so many Democrat leaders are taking their political cues from the far-left, Moveon wing of the party. The bottom line is Karl Rove was discouraging a reporter from writing a false story based on a false premise and the Democrats are engaging in blatant partisan political attacks." As super, double secret Tim Russert said recently on his show, "One Republican said to me last night. If this was a Democratic White House, we'd have Congressional hearings in a second." Michael Donnelly writes from Salem, OR. He abhors the entire Grand Jury process. He can be reached at pahtoo [at] aol.com (1) Bill Frist (R-TN) (2) Lindsey Graham (R-SC) (3) Henry Hyde (R-ILL) (4) James Sensenbrenner: (R-WI) (5) Chuck Hagel (R-NB): (6) Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (7) Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-TX) --------21 of 22-------- Published on Thursday, October 27, 2005 by the News & Observer (North Carolina) Out of Iraq, Now by Stan Goff Raleigh - George W. Bush doesn't read many memos and he apparently doesn't read history. He should. Then he'd know more about the Pentagon Papers. In 1971, Daniel Ellsberg, a former Defense Department employee then working at the Rand Corporation, had grown so restive over reports he had seen that proved a pattern of systematic lying to the public about America's war in Vietnam that he could no longer in good conscience remain silent. He leaked what would become "the Pentagon Papers" to the press. They showed that the government had lied about the war, and that many experts believed by 1968 that the war itself was unwinnable. More than 20,000 of our war deaths - which eventually totaled 58,000 Americans (plus millions of Southeast Asians) - occurred after 1968. After military and political experts told two administrations that the war would be lost. We have now passed the much smaller empirical milestone in Iraq of 2,000 American dead. This figure does not include Afghanistan, it does not include more than 15,000 troops wounded, nor over 400 who have lost limbs, nor does it include the tens of thousands of Iraqi dead. There is nothing special about the number 2,000, except what was special about each of the numerical increments along the way. Two thousand times now, a military sedan with two or three uniformed service members has pulled up in front of some home in the United States or Puerto Rico to deliver news that tore the hearts out of people and shattered their lives. So this round number is just an opportunity to remind ourselves of what is going on - and what is not. The rate of terror attacks worldwide has tripled since 9/11, so the world is no safer. No one has "won the war but lost the peace" in Iraq - one of the most Orwellian phrases imaginable, repeated like a drunken mantra to sustain denial about the reality of Iraq. The war has never been won. All that was accomplished was a bloody occupation. According to every poll, the majority of Iraqis want the occupation out, so the majority will is not being respected in this alleged attempt to build democracy at gunpoint. The military is suffering such a profound retention and recruitment crisis that it has lowered standards and even resorted to recruiting among hurricane suviviors at the Astrodome. Taxpayers are footing a $6 billion a month bill for the war in Iraq; and future taxpayers will get the bill for billions more in national debt, 40 percent of which is debt now owned by foreign investors and central banks. So we aren't just sacrificing schools and health care and housing but the futures of our children - who will be approachable by more recruiters for more wars if something doesn't change. Two thousand is not just a number to reflect on, then go about our business. This is the equivalent of slapping one of those yellow ribbon magnets on a car that says "Support The Troops." It's easy, and it makes people feel better about their lack of action. It really is time to take note. The U.S. military occupation of Iraq is the single greatest catalyst for the violence there. Fewer than 4 percent of the insurgent fighters are foreign, and they are there because of the U.S. presence. Most of the daily attacks are directed at Americans, though more vulnerable civilians bear the brunt of these attacks. There are around 500 attacks per week, and electoral gymnastics have not changed this one whit - in fact, these U.S.-managed affairs may actually make things much worse. It's time to face these facts head-on and to get out of Iraq now. Immediately. As quickly as the plans can be drawn up for redeployment. The Iraqis have coped with far more chaos from the occupation than they will without it, and, however painfully, they will find their way better when it is their way, not what the Bush administration says is their way. The argument that those who have died will have died in vain is sophistry of the cruelest kind. We do not say when children are killed by drunken drivers that they died in vain. We honor their memories by organizing to ensure that the same thing doesn't happen to others. The way we support the troops - as human beings, not occupiers - and honor the memories of those who have already died is to bring them all home, and do it now. Stan Goff is a retired Special Forces master sergeant whose son has been to Iraq with the Army twice. He is the author of "Full Spectrum Disorder -- The Military in the New American Century" (2004) and a member of Veterans for Peace and Military Families Speak Out. 2005 The News & Observer Publishing Company --------22 of 22-------- The Jerk-O-Lantern: in front, Bush's fool face, in back, his big bung butt. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments
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