|Progressive Calendar 07.13.06||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2006 06:21:07 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 07.13.06 1. Latin/choice 7.13 9am 2. Peace/harmony/film 7.13 12:30pm 3. Eagan peace vigil 7.13 4:30pm 4. Northtown vigil 7.13 5pm 5. Labor/health 7.13 5:30pm 6. Choice laughs 7.13 7pm 7. Iran/women/book 7.13 7pm 8. RamseyCo parade 7.13 7pm 9. Green roof 7.14 8:30am 10. Mexico/vote fraud 7.14 11:30am 11. Labor/wobfest 7.14 4pm 12. Teamsters 7.14 7pm 13. Mizna/literary 7.14 7:30pm 14. Queer boys nite 7.14 8pm 15. Global warming 7.14-16 Spring Green WI 16. ed - Re: DFL hacks vs Ellison; Kushner 17. Bill Blum - Great moments in the history of imperialism 18. Emma Goldman - A new Declaration of Independence --------1 of 18-------- From: erin [at] mnwomen.org Subject: Latin/choice 7.13 9am Thursday, July 13: Pro-Choice Resources Presenting Silvia Enrique, Executive Director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, located in New York City, who will speak about Latina immigrants access to Reproductive Health Services, specifically birth control and Emergency Contraception. 9am. YWCA Midtown, 2121 East Lake Street, Minneapolis. Info, contact Veronica at 612/825-2000. ---------2 of 18-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Peace/harmony/film 7.13 12:30pm Thursday, 7/13, 12:30 pm, John Mohawk presents film "The Art of Peace, Harmony with the Land" as a 'preview' to the Biooneers Conference, Pathways, 3115 Hennepin Ave S, Uptown Mpls. 612-247-0781. --------3 of 18-------- From: Greg and Sue Skog <skograce [at] mtn.org> Subject: Eagan peace vigil 7.13 4:30pm CANDLELIGHT PEACE VIGIL EVERY THURSDAY from 4:30-5:30pm on the Northwest corner of Pilot Knob Road and Yankee Doodle Road in Eagan. We have signs and candles. Say "NO to war!" The weekly vigil is sponsored by: Friends south of the river speaking out against war. --------4 of 18--------- From: EKalamboki [at] aol.com Subject: Northtown vigil 7.13 5pm NORTHTOWN Peace Vigil every Thursday to 5 to 6 pm, at the intersection of Co. Hwy 10 and University Ave NE (SE corner across from Denny's), in Blaine. Communities situated near the Northtown Mall include: Blaine, Mounds View, New Brighton, Roseville, Shoreview, Arden Hills, Spring Lake Park, Fridley, and Coon Rapids. We'll have extra signs. For more information people can contact Evangelos Kalambokidis by phone or email: (763)574-9615, ekalamboki [at] aol.com. --------5 of 18-------- From: stpaulunions.org <llwright [at] stpaulunions.org> Subject: Labor/health 7.13 5:30pm St. Croix Valley Central Labor council and St. Paul Trades and Labor Assembly Door Knocks and Phone Banks Union Member to Union Member conversations about needed health care reform. Volunteers are necessary to visit and/or call Union members to discuss: · Stories of lost health care coverage. · Escalating premiums. · Exorbitant co pays. · Delayed or avoided health care. Before we talk about candidates we need to discuss issues important to workers and their families. However, labor’s endorsed candidates support reform and the right of Minnesotans to affordable and accessible health care. Join us to start the discussion and create momentum for labor victories this fall. Thursday, July 13, 5:30pm: Door Knock Launching from Lilly Lake Park in Stillwater--Greeley St. at Lily Lake (From Hwy 36 go N on Greeley approximately 1 mile to the Park). Phone Bank from Sheet Metal Workers Union Hall-1681 East Cope Ave. Maplewood --------6 of 18-------- From: burrowsreise <burrowsreise [at] yahoo.com> Subject: Choice laughs 7.13 7pm Here's an opportunity to support pro-choice organizing and have fun while doing it... NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota announces its Seventh Annual Comedy for Choice! Confirmed performers include past favorites KEVIN KLING, MARY HIRSCH, AMY SALLOWAY, and HOLLY DAVIS. Just added: DARLENE WESTGOR, named "Funniest Mom in America" by Nick [at] Nite, and AMY ANDERSON, one of the hottest up-and-coming comedians in the U.S. Pro-choice legislator and all around fun guy Frank Hornstein (DFL-60B) will return to emcee the night of laughs. Where else are you going to have the opportunity to see this many talented artists under one roof? Woman's Club of Minneapolis, 410 Oak Grove St, Mpls (Across from Loring Park. Free on-site parking) 7pm, Thursday, July 13 Tickets are $30 in advance ($35 day of event) PURCHASE TICKETS AT www.prochoiceminnesota.org or at the event on Thursday. --------7 of 18-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Iran/women/book 7.13 7pm Thursday July 13, 7pm, Amazon Books, 4755 Chicago Av S Mpls Persis Karim Let Me Tell You Where I've Been: New Writing by Women of the Iranian Diaspora The diversity of voices represented in this stunning collection of poetry, fiction and nonfiction by women of Iranian descent shatters their narrow image in the U.S. Though none are well known, most of the 53 authors live in the U.S. and 15 have been published in journals if not books. Though many contributions avoid politics, several writers illustrate heartbreaking incidents of stereotyping that reveal the struggle of facing pervasive social suspicion. Touching on universal themes of love and loss, exile and longing, politics and war, this collection derives its cumulative power from its authors' subtle, uniquely female perceptions. --------8 of 18-------- From: BRUCE ROMAN <bruceroman [at] msn.com> Subject: RamseyCo parade 7.13 7pm Big news: Green Party candidates can meet 10,000-12,000+ people Thursday night July 13. All they have to do is walk bike whatever in the White Bear Av parade. This is part of the Ramsey County Fair; it is the Eest metro's largest parade. It starts at 7pm. We must be in place by 6:40. Show up no later than 6:40pm, and a nest shuttle will take us to our spot. Meet us at the booth around 6pm or park in the Aldrich Arena lot and look for the next bus (far west part of parking lot). Our unit number is ha-94 on Hawthorn ha-94 will be marked on side of street. Got questions? Call Bruce Roman at 651-777-1422 bring signs or anything else. hope for good weather....Bruce Roman --------9 of 18--------- From: Corrie Zoll Subject: Green roof 7.14 8:30am Several of the workshops listed below will be held in the Eco-Yard Midtown, a new sustainable landscaping demonstration site at the north edge of our parking lot along the Midtown Greenway. The eco-yard is worth a visit even if you're not attending a workshop. More information online at: www.co.hennepin.mn.us/vgn/portal/internet/hcdetailmaster/0,2300,1273_83222_124817263,00.html And if you do stop in, please visit our AWARD-WINNING green rooftop on the third floor. Or at least visit the live green roof web cam at www.greeninstitute.org. Friday, July 14, 8:30am-5pm Green Roof Infrastructure Design & Installation Course http://www.greenroofs.net ---------10 of 18-------- From: wade [at] wadehannon.org Subject: Mexico/vote fraud 7.14 11:30am EMERGENCY PICKET AGAINST ELECTORAL FRAUD IN MEXICO Friday, July 14 at 11:30 AM (At the Mexican Consulate in St. Paul) A picket of the Mexican consulate in St. Paul to join the Mexican people in protest against the electoral fraud that is being perpetrated in Mexico. Friday, July 14 at 11:30 am. Please be prompt so we can maximize our numbers and effect. Where: The Mexican consulate in St. Paul (797 7th St E.) See below for a map. The Mexican Elections are far from over. Although the Federal Electoral Institute has given the PAN's Felipe Calderon a majority, the final determination can only be made by the Superior Court of the Federal Electoral Tribunal. There are many legal channels yet to pursue, so a final decision is far from being made. And yet the United States and and handful other governments have already recognized Caldern as the winner. There is ample evidence of irregularities in the vote counting process, and hundreds of thousands of Mexican citizens have come out on the streets to demand a ballot-by-ballot recount. They are convinced that their candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador has been fraudulently denied victory due to his promises to "put the poor first". More massive mobilizations in Mexico are planned for this weekend. Come join us as part of a day of international "election observers" to let the Fox government know the world is watching. No to electoral fraud in Mexico! For more information or to endorse this event, please contact John Peterson and *El Militante Sin Fronteras* at: elmilitantesinfronteras [at] gmail.com or 651 373 7609. For more information on the international call to action, please see http://www.militante.org/. Please help us distribute this information widely. Map and directions to the Mexican Consulate in St. Paul: http://local.yahoo.com/details?fr=dd-local-tl1&id=32200439&stx=mexico+consulate&csz=St+Paul+MN&ed=IcaoEK160SwiKXKiVmy3ILQ4MfmX4qv7AnTch2IWLNasRdEd4Js51WvgKc0w32jgGSKf --------11 of 18-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Labor/wobfest 7.14 4pm MIDWEST WOBFEST 2006 The Twin Cities Branch of the Industrial Workers of the World (The Wobblies) is hosting this annual celebration of radical unionism Friday, July 14 through Sunday, July 16th. The IWW is a union unlike any other. It is a grassroots, democratic and militant union that seeks to organize ALL workers in ALL industries in ALL countries into 'One Big Union, - without the bureaucracy and without the fat cat salaries that will do a deal with the boss behind members' backs. Founded over 100 years ago, the Wobblies were the first to advance many causes of the American labor movement---the first to include people of color in a union with white workers and the first to fight for the eight-hour day and the 40-hour week. A 1917 poster said, "Why Be a Soldier? Be a Man. Join the IWW And Fight on the Job for Yourself and Your Class." FRIDAY JULY 14 4pm til Midnight Wobfest check-in and Bonfire of Discontent Fellow Workers are welcome to check in at the Jack Pine Collective (2815 E Lake St) from 4-9 with music and refreshments. At 9, we will shuttle over to the Bonfire for more beverages and food, and for a chance to share stories of the class war. For more information on this event, please contact us at twincities [at] iww.org 612 339 4418 --------12 of 18-------- From: Brad Sigal <bradsigal [at] gmail.com> Subject: Teamsters 7.14 7pm This Friday 7 pm - Come to a St. Paul Fundraiser for Teamster 743 reformers A great battle is under way to transform a mobbed up union in Chicago, IL into one that gathers the strength of its membership to build better lives. This battle is the story of over 20 years of hard work by members of the 743 New Leadership Slate, a movement within Teamsters Local 743. 743 NLS works to preserve workers rights and benefits while battling greedy bosses to surrender to just demands. The list of accomplishments by this group is very long. Check out their website www.743newleadership.org <http://www.743newleadership.org/> There will be a fundraiser to help in the next steps of a legal battle initiated by the US Department of Labor, which is suing the current corrupt leaders of the union. The charge of current officials being mobbed up has been revealed through the discovery process in the legal case. Richard Berg has been a member of Teamsters Local 743 for more than 15 years. He will be in the Twin Cities on Friday July 14th, 7:00 p.m. to talk about the fight to reform the union and the nation wide campaign to oust Jimmy Hoffa from the national presidency. Local union leaders will also add to the presentation and discussion. Please join us at July 14th, 2006 1744 St. Clair Avenue, St Paul, 7:00 p.m. For more information, call me at (612) 251-9895 In Solidarity, J Burger --------13 of 18-------- From: Mizna <mizna-announce [at] mizna.org> Subject: Mizna/literary 7.14 7:30pm Journa Release Party and Reading Friday, July 14, 2006 7:30 PM Coffman Union Bookstore, University of Minnesota 300 Washington Avenue SE Minneapolis, Minnesota $5 suggested donation Mizna announces the publication release reading of Volume 8, Issue 1 of its Arab American literary journal on July 14, 2006 at the Coffman Union Bookstore at the University of Minnesota. This reading will feature local writers Ahmed Yusuf, Mazen Halabi, D. Daryoush,Rabi'h Nahas, Brooke Anthony, Sophia Yohannes, P.A. Pashibin, and Ismail Khalidi, Habib Albi reading their work which will be appearing in the journal. The reading will be followed by a reception with the authors. Volume 8, Issue 1 is the 18th issue of Mizna's literary journal. Visit our website at http://www.mizna.org or email us at Mizna [at] Mizna.org --------14 of 18-------- From: paulino brener <email [at] paulino.info> Subject: Queer boys nite 7.14 8pm QUEER BOYZ NITE @ PATRICK'S CABARET www.patrickscabaret.org Friday 14 and Saturday 15, July 2006 8pm $8ºº call (612) 721-3595 for reservations. 3010 Minnehaha Ave. Mpls 55406 It's queer boyz nite and everyone is welcome! Performers include Paulino Brener divo from Argentina George Mauer jazz piano Bernard Dewley performance poet Dustin Allen Korhonen naked accordion Coleman Lindberg singer/songwriter Aaron Keith Stewart jazz vocals --------15 of 18-------- From: "Raging Grannie (Wanda B)" <wsb70 [at] comcast.net> Subject: Global warming 7.14-16 Spring Green WI We cannot stop it, of course, we can only change what we are doing now to reduce the effect in the future.... To REGISTER! Stop Global Warming, Clean Up Coal Plants, Support Clean Energy Build the Movement Global Warming Solutions Weekend Retreat Hilltop Conference Center, Spring Green, WI July 14 - 16, 2006 The Midwest is America's heartland and responsible for 20% of the CO2 pollution in the United States and 5% of the CO2 pollution in the world. That's more global warming pollutants than any country in the world other than China, the former Soviet Union, India and Japan. Finding solutions to global warming is the most fundamental challenge of our times. We have the technology and the science to stop the warming trend. Join a weekend organizing and skills training workshop, and lend your voice to the powerful social movement to promote clean energy development and stop global warming. Join Cal DeWitt, Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies; Eban Goodstein, Green House Network; Elysa Hammond, Clif Bar; Chad Kister, Arctic Explorer; Howard Learner, Environmental Law & Policy Center; Katie Nekola, Clean Wisconsin; Dr. Don Waller, University of Wisconsin and more. The weekend workshop will include Midwest leaders working on clean energy development initiatives to reduce pollution; scientists who study the ecological impacts of global warming; and community leaders who lead campaigns to reduce pollution. Connections with other activists will be made and strengthened. Each participant will gain tools to build and strengthen clean energy and coal plant clean-up campaigns in their community. Past participants have included artists, engineers, students, clergy members, retirees, nurses, architects, college professors, and scientists. Registration fees include food and lodging for Friday and Saturday nights: Standard rate (Dorm or camping accommodations): $130 Non-lodging rate: $ 100 Students: $30 To register or for more information, please visit <https://www.123signup.com/event?id=qfxxh>https://www.123signup.com/event?id=qfxxh. Eban Goodstein Volunteer Executive Director Green House Network info [at] greenhousenet.org www.greenhousenet.org --------16 of 18-------- Re: DFL hacks vs Ellison; Kushner Jordan Kushner, quoted in the last Progressive Calendar re two reservations of his to Keith Ellison, wishes it to be known that he "participated as a DFL delegate to support Nelson-Pallmeyer or Ellison, and am now supporting Keith (with a little reservation)...". [Comment: it is the usual sad lot of the DFLer to be presented with candidates that disagree with them (and most Americans) on one or more fundamental issues (eg the war in Iraq). Progressive DFL challengers last just long enough to keep progressives roped into in the DFL; then they fail to be endorsed and call for "party unity" where they swallow hard and accept positions they ran to stop. Almost always the most corporate wins endorsement (eg Kerry not Kucinich, Klobuchar not Bell). But hope springs eternal in the beleaguered progressive DFLer's breast, similar to Charlie Brown's faith that Lucy will not jerk the football away at the last moment. Giving up that faith would mean they would have to do something, you know, different. That's change, and who likes that? What's nice about the Green Party is that it takes no PAC money, and thus can and does take the progressive postition on all (not just some) major issues. No swallowing hard and, eg, implcitly supporting the war or other parts of the corporate agenda. The Green tent may be small, but it rests on firm foundations.-ed] --------17 of 18-------- The Anti-Empire Report July 13, 2006 Great Moments in the History of Imperialism By Bill Blum ZNet Commentary http://www.zmag.org/sustainers/content/2006-06/28blum.cfm Great Moments in the History of Imperialism National Public Radio foreign correspondent Loren Jenkins, serving in NPR's Baghdad bureau, met earlier this month with a senior Shiite cleric, a man who was described in the NPR report as "a moderate" and as a person trying to lead his Shiite followers into practicing peace and reconciliation. He had been jailed by Saddam Hussein and forced into exile. Jenkins asked him: "What would you think if you had to go back to Saddam Hussein?" The cleric replied that he'd "rather see Iraq under Saddam Hussein than the way it is now." When one considers what the people of Iraq have experienced as a result of the American bombings, invasion, regime change, and occupation since 2003, should this attitude be surprising, even from such an individual? I was moved to compile a list of the many kinds of misfortune which have fallen upon the heads of the Iraqi people as a result of the American liberation of their homeland. It's depressing reading, and you may not want to read it all, but I think it's important to have it summarized in one place. Loss of a functioning educational system. A 2005 UN study revealed that 84% of the higher education establishments have been "destroyed, damaged and robbed". The intellectual stock has been further depleted as many thousands of academics and other professionals have fled abroad or have been mysteriously kidnapped or assassinated in Iraq; hundreds of thousands, perhaps a million, other Iraqis, most of them from the vital, educated middle class, have left for Jordan, Syria or Egypt, many after receiving death threats. "Now I am isolated," said a middle-class Sunni Arab, who decided to leave. "I have no government. I have no protection from the government. Anyone can come to my house, take me, kill me and throw me in the trash." [But look at the good side. As a result, in some other country, perhaps one favored by God (take your pick), a worthy rich person achieves his dearest childhood dream of owning three yachts, five congresspeople, and several practiced providers of "services". -ed] Loss of a functioning health care system. And loss of the public's health. Deadly infections including typhoid and tuberculosis are rampaging through the country. Iraq's network of hospitals and health centers, once admired throughout the Middle East, has been severely damaged by the war and looting. [But look at the good side. I'm not sure what it is, but it must be there, because everything always happens for the best. -ed] The UN's World Food Program reported that 400,000 Iraqi children were suffering from "dangerous deficiencies of protein". Deaths from malnutrition and preventable diseases, particularly amongst children, already a problem because of the 12 years of US-imposed sanctions, have increased as poverty and disorder have made access to a proper diet and medicines ever more difficult. Thousands of Iraqis have lost an arm or a leg, frequently from unexploded US cluster bombs, which became land mines; cluster bombs are a class of weapons denounced by human rights groups as a cruelly random scourge on civilians, particularly children. Depleted uranium particles, from exploded US ordnance, float in the Iraqi air, to be breathed into human bodies and to radiate forever, and infect the water, the soil, the blood, the genes, producing malformed babies. During the few weeks of war in spring 2003, A10 "tankbuster" planes, which use munitions containing depleted uranium, fired 300,000 rounds. And the use of napalm as well. And white phosphorous. [But look at the good side. Maybe it kills mosquitoes too. What a blessing that would be. -ed] The American military has attacked hospitals to prevent them from giving out casualty figures of US attacks that contradicted official US figures, which the hospitals had been in the habit of doing. Numerous homes have been broken into by US forces, the men taken away, the women humiliated, the children traumatized; on many occasions, the family has said that the American soldiers helped themselves to some of the family's money. Iraq has had to submit to a degrading national strip search. Destruction and looting of the country's ancient heritage, perhaps the world's greatest archive of the human past, left unprotected by the US military, busy protecting oil facilities. A nearly lawless society: Iraq's legal system, outside of the political sphere, was once one of the most impressive and secular in the Middle East; it is now a shambles; religious law more and more prevails. [But look at the good side. You have to hit bottom before you can move up. No pain, no gain. We're helping them hit bottom sooner. They should thank us. -ed] Women's rights previously enjoyed are now in great and growing danger under harsh Islamic law, to one extent or another in various areas. There is today a Shiite religious ruling class in Iraq, which tolerates physical attacks on women for showing a bare arm or for picnicking with a male friend. Men can be harassed for wearing shorts in public, as can children playing outside in shorts. Sex trafficking, virtually nonexistent previously, has become a serious issue. Jews, Christians, and other non-Muslims have lost much of the security they had enjoyed in Saddam's secular society; many have emigrated. A gulag of prisons run by the US and the new Iraqi government feature a wide variety of torture and abuse - physical, psychological, emotional; painful, degrading, humiliating; leading to mental breakdown, death, suicide; a human-rights disaster area. Over 50,000 Iraqis have been imprisoned by US forces since the invasion, but only a very tiny portion of them have been convicted of any crime. US authorities have recruited members of Saddam Hussein's feared security service to expand intelligence gathering and root out the resistance. Unemployment is estimated to be around fifty percent. Massive layoffs of hundreds of thousands of Baathist government workers and soldiers by the American occupation authority set the process in motion early on. Later, many, desperate for work, took positions tainted by a connection to the occupation, placing themselves in grave danger of being kidnapped or murdered. The cost of living has skyrocketed. Income levels have plummeted. [But look at the good side. With less for them, there's more for us. -ed] The Kurds of Northern Iraq evict Arabs from their homes. Arabs evict Kurds in other parts of the country. Many people were evicted from their homes because they were Baathist. US troops took part in some of the evictions. They have also demolished homes in fits of rage over the killing of one of their buddies. When US troops don't find who they're looking for, they take who's there; wives have been held until the husband turns himself in, a practice which Hollywood films stamped in the American mind as being a particular evil of the Nazis; it's also collective punishment of civilians and is forbidden under the Geneva Convention. Continual bombing assaults on neighborhoods has left an uncountable number of destroyed homes, workplaces, mosques, bridges, roads, and everything else that goes into the making of modern civilized life. Hafitha, Fallujah, Samarra, Ramadi ... names that will live in infamy for the wanton destruction, murder, and assaults upon human beings and human rights carried out in those places by US forces. The supply of safe drinking water, effective sewage disposal, and reliable electricity have all generally been below pre-invasion levels, producing constant hardship for the public, in temperatures reaching 115 degrees. To add to the misery, people wait all day in the heat to purchase gasoline, due in part to oil production, the country's chief source of revenue, being less than half its previous level. The water and sewage system and other elements of the infrastructure had been purposely (sic) destroyed by US bombing in the first Gulf War of 1991. By 2003, the Iraqis had made great strides in repairing the most essential parts of it. Then came Washington's renewed bombing. Civil war, death squads, kidnaping, car bombs, rape, each and every day ... Iraq has become the most dangerous place on earth. American soldiers and private security companies regularly kill people and leave the bodies lying in the street; US-trained Iraqi military and police forces kill even more, as does the insurgency. An entire new generation is growing up on violence and sectarian ethics; this will poison the Iraqi psyche for many years to come. US intelligence and military police officers often free dangerous criminals in return for a promise to spy on insurgents. Protesters of various kinds have been shot by US forces on several occasions. At various times, the US has killed, wounded and jailed reporters from Al Jazeera television, closed the station's office, and banned it from certain areas because occupation officials didn't like the news the station was reporting. Newspapers have been closed for what they have printed. The Pentagon has planted paid-for news articles in the Iraqi press to serve propaganda purposes. But freedom has indeed reigned -- for the great multinationals to extract everything they can from Iraq's resources and labor without the hindrance of public interest laws, environmental regulations or worker protections. The orders of the day have been privatization, deregulation, and laissez faire for Halliburton and other Western corporations. Iraqi businesses have been almost entirely shut out though they are not without abilities, as reflected in the infrastructure rebuilding effort following the US bombing of 1991. Yet, despite the fact that it would be difficult to name a single area of Iraqi life which has improved as a result of the American actions, when the subject is Iraq and the person I'm having a discussion with has no other argument left to defend US policy there, at least at the moment, I may be asked: "Just tell me one thing, are you glad that Saddam Hussein is out of power?" And I say: "No". And the person says: "No?" And I say: "No. Tell me, if you went into surgery to correct a knee problem and the surgeon mistakenly amputated your entire leg, what would you think if someone then asked you: Are you glad that you no longer have a knee problem? The people of Iraq no longer have a Saddam problem." And many Iraqis actually supported him. "Moderation in temper is always a virtue; moderation in principle is always a vice." Thomas Paine. Recently, Al Gore appeared at a bookstore in downtown Washington signing copies of his new book on environmental concerns, when who should show up on the line of people looking for a signed copy but Ralph Nader. Gore stood up and said: "Nice to see you! How you doing? I'm really so grateful to you for coming by." After more pleasantries, Gore inscribed the book: "For my friend, Ralph Nader. With respect, Al Gore." Two men in line could not resist remarking to Nader that if not for him Gore might have won the election in 2000. "Thanks to you, we had Bush all these years," said one. "How many are dead in Iraq because of that?" What Nader replied has not been reported. The idea that Ralph Nader cost the Democrats the 2000 election will likely persist forever, so let me state for all eternity, speaking for myself and for the millions like me: The choice facing us was not Ralph Nader or Albert Gore. The choice facing us was Ralph Nader or not voting at all. If Nader had not been on the ballot, we would have stayed home. The millions who voted for Nader and the millions more who stayed home demanded an inspiring alternative to the Republicans; even a halfway inspiring alternative would have sufficed for most of us. The Democrats did not, and still do not, offer any kind of alternative, particularly on foreign policy. On foreign policy the two major parties are completely indistinguishable. For all intents and purposes, the United States is a one-party state in all but name - the War Party. The occasional minor points of difference which arise are Democratic artificial constructs created for election purposes, and in these cases the Democrats often take a position to the right of their Republican "opponents", like calling for tougher measures in the war on terrorism or against Iran. This is the case with the Democrats whether we're speaking of the conservatives amongst them, or the moderates, or the liberals. And this has long been the case. Here is an excerpt from a talk delivered in 1965 by Carl Oglesby, President of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), at an anti-Vietnam War rally in Washington: "The original commitment in Vietnam was made by President Truman, a mainstream liberal. It was seconded by President Eisenhower, a moderate liberal. It was intensified by the late President Kennedy, a flaming liberal. Think of the men who now engineer that war - those who study the maps, give the commands, push the buttons, and tally the dead: Bundy, McNamara, Rusk, Lodge, Goldberg, the President [Johnson] himself. They are not moral monsters. They are all honorable men. They are all liberals." Eat the Rich. Share your recipes. With Bill Gates's announcement that he'll be phasing out his day-to-day participation in Microsoft, the media has carried a lot of adulatory stories about the Wunderkind, who became the world's youngest self-made billionaire at age 31. I do not mean to detract from Gates's accomplishments when I point out that for him to have become a billionaire just six years after introducing the MS-DOS 1.0 operating system, Microsoft had to be charging a lot more - an awful lot more - for its software than it had to based on the company's costs. There are those, enamored by the philosophy, practice, and folklore of free enterprise and rugged individualism, who will declare: "More power to the guy! He deserved every penny of it!" There are others, enamored by the vision of a more equitable society, who question how the current distribution of property and wealth can reasonably be said to derive from any sort of democratic process. By the 21st century, American society should have evolved beyond two percent with breathtaking wealth and seventy-five percent with a daily struggle for a decent life, including the middle class. In fact, along such lines we're regressing. This is almost heresy to many Americans, who are unwilling to tamper with political and economic arrangements, though they have no qualms about meddling with people's sex lives, women's bodies, and other moral issues. Greed and selfishness are natural, they insist, and have to be catered to. But if the system should cater to selfishness because it's natural, why not cater to aggression which many of the same people claim is natural? NOTES  NPR, "Day to Day", June 6, 2006  New York Times, May 19, 2006  Washington Post, June 16, 2006, p.2  November 27, 1965, copy of Oglesby's speech in my possession --------18 of 18-------- A New Declaration of Independence By Emma Goldman Published in Mother Earth, Vol. IV, no. 5, July 1909. (reprnted by Information Clearing House July 4, 2006) When, in the course of human development, existing institutions prove inadequate to the needs of man, when they serve merely to enslave, rob, and oppress mankind, the people have the eternal right to rebel against, and overthrow, these institutions. The mere fact that these forces - inimical to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness - are legalized by statute laws, sanctified by divine rights, and enforced by political power, in no way justifies their continued existence. We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all human beings, irrespective of race, color, or sex, are born with the equal right to share at the table of life; that to secure this right, there must be established among men economic, social, and political freedom; we hold further that government exists but to maintain special privilege and property rights; that it coerces man into submission and therefore robs him of dignity, self-respect, and life. The history of the American kings of capital and authority is the history of repeated crimes, injustice, oppression, outrage, and abuse, all aiming at the suppression of individual liberties and the exploitation of the people. A vast country, rich enough to supply all her children with all possible comforts, and insure well-being to all, is in the hands of a few, while the nameless millions are at the mercy of ruthless wealth gatherers, unscrupulous lawmakers, and corrupt politicians. Sturdy sons of America are forced to tramp the country in a fruitless search for bread, and many of her daughters are driven into the street, while thousands of tender children are daily sacrificed on the altar of Mammon. The reign of these kings is holding mankind in slavery, perpetuating poverty and disease, maintaining crime and corruption; it is fettering the spirit of liberty, throttling the voice of justice, and degrading and oppressing humanity. It is engaged in continual war and slaughter, devastating the country and destroying the best and finest qualities of man; it nurtures superstition and ignorance, sows prejudice and strife, and turns the human family into a camp of Ishmaelites. We, therefore, the liberty-loving men and women, realizing the great injustice and brutality of this state of affairs, earnestly and boldly do hereby declare, That each and every individual is and ought to be free to own himself and to enjoy the full fruit of his labor; that man is absolved from all allegiance to the kings of authority and capital; that he has, by the very fact of his being, free access to the land and all means of production, and entire liberty of disposing of the fruits of his efforts; that each and every individual has the unquestionable and unabridgeable right of free and voluntary association with other equally sovereign individuals for economic, political, social, and all other purposes, and that to achieve this end man must emancipate himself from the sacredness of property, the respect for man-made law, the fear of the Church, the cowardice of public opinion, the stupid arrogance of national, racial, religious, and sex superiority, and from the narrow puritanical conception of human life. And for the support of this Declaration, and with a firm reliance on the harmonious blending of man's social and individual tendencies, the lovers of liberty joyfully consecrate their uncompromising devotion, their energy and intelligence, their solidarity and their lives. This `Declaration' was written at the request of a certain newspaper, which subsequently refused to publish it, though the article was already in composition. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ - 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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