Progressive Calendar 07.13.06
From: David Shove (
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]
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

9am. YWCA Midtown, 2121 East Lake Street, Minneapolis. Info, contact
Veronica at 612/825-2000.

---------2 of 18--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
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]>
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]
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

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]

--------5 of 18--------

From: <llwright [at]>
Subject: Labor/health 7.13 5:30pm

St. Croix Valley Central Labor council and St. Paul Trades and Labor
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

· 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&rsquo;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.

--------6 of 18--------

From: burrowsreise <burrowsreise [at]>
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 or at the event on

--------7 of 18--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
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

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]>
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:,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

Friday, July 14, 8:30am-5pm
Green Roof Infrastructure Design & Installation Course

---------10 of 18--------

From: wade [at]
Subject: Mexico/vote fraud 7.14 11:30am

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

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

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

For more information or to endorse this event, please contact John
Peterson and *El Militante Sin Fronteras* at:
elmilitantesinfronteras [at] or 651 373 7609.  For more information
on the international call to action, please see
Please help us distribute this information widely.

Map and directions to the Mexican Consulate in St. Paul:

--------11 of 18--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
Subject: Labor/wobfest 7.14 4pm


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."

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] 612 339 4418

--------12 of 18--------

From: Brad Sigal <bradsigal [at]>
Subject: Teamsters 7.14 7pm
This Friday 7 pm - Come to a St. Paul Fundraiser for Teamster 743

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

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]>
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 or email us at Mizna [at]

--------14 of 18--------

From: paulino brener <email [at]>
Subject: Queer boys nite 7.14 8pm


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]>
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....


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

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

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

Eban Goodstein Volunteer Executive Director Green House Network
info [at]

--------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

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."[1]

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."[2]

[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

[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

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

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

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

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

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?"[3]
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.[4]"

                   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

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?


[1] NPR, "Day to Day", June 6, 2006
[2] New York Times, May 19, 2006
[3] Washington Post, June 16, 2006, p.2
[4] 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]
   rhymes with clove         Progressive Calendar
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