Progressive Calendar 01.22.07
From: David Shove (
Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2007 01:53:20 -0800 (PST)
            P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R    01.22.07

1. Mental health   1.22 9am
2. Save the earth  1.22 9:30am
3. Gender          1.22 3:15pm
4. Pro-choice      1.22 5:30pm
5. Somail diaspora 1.22 7pm
6. Pro-choice      1.22 8pm

7. ICE immigrants  1.23 9am
8. Newborn testing 1.23 9am
9. Immigration     1.23 10:45am
10. Help animals   1.23 4pm
11. Poetry salon   1.23 6:30pm
12. Energy/war     1.23 6:30pm
13. I-35W bus      1.23 7pm
14. Arise nerds    1.23 7pm
15. JanitorsStrike 1.23 7pm
16. TransraceAdopt 1.23 7pm
17. Cuba           1.23 7pm

18. Joshua Frank  - Hillary Clinton and the pro-Israel lobby
19. Cindy Sheehan - Hillary for president? No way
20. Bill Moyers   - Life on the plantation [part 2 of 2]

--------1 of 20--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
Subject: Mental health 1.22 9am

JAN.22: Jim Ramstad and Patrick Kennedy are having an unofficial hearing
at the humphrey insitute 1/22 9-11am on the Senator Paul Wellstone
Mental Health Equitable Treatment Act, commonly known as the full mental
health parity bill.  This is identical to the Bill Paul had in for
several years.  We should be able to pass it this year.  It has passed
the Senate several times but Hastert always blocked it in the House for
his buddies from the insurance world.  If this passes it would be the
single biggest piece of legislation that Paul authored that made it into
Mark Anderson  Email: markjanderson [at],

--------2 of 20--------

From: erin [at]
Subject: Save the earth 1.22 9:30am

January 22: American Association of University Women, Minneapolis Branch
Programs: 9:30-10:30 AM - Our Beleaguered Earth: Can She Be Saved?;
10:45-11:45 -The Uncanny Physics and Superhero Comic Books; Noon-1:15 -
Luncheon; 1:15-2:15: The Mississippi Riverfront: Its Past, Present, and
Future or Literature discussion with Jan Anderson on March by Geraldine
Brooks. 612/870-1661 for more information or luncheon.

--------3 of 20--------

From: David Strand <mncivil [at]>
Subject: Gender 1.22 3:15pm

If you haven't heard Dean Spade speak, do yourself the pleasure of getting
to this lecture at the U of MN Twin Cities late Monday afternoon.  I'd say
it's worth taking off early from work if you can! -David Strand

FYI -- room change for this Monday's talk:
Please note that, in anticipation of a larger turnout, the Dean Spade
lecture scheduled for Monday (see below) will be held in FORD HALL
B-10  (NOT Ford Hall 400 as previously stated).

Consolidating the Gendered Citizen: Trans Survival, Bureaucratic Power,
and the War on Terror

Dean Spade from University of California - Los Angeles Law School Williams

Monday, January 22, 2007
Ford Hall room B-10, on the East Bank campus of the U. The website with a
map to find Ford Hall is: http://onestop. FordH/

3:15-3:30pm Refreshments
3:30-5:00pm Talk

As an increasingly institutionalized transgender rights movement has
emerged in the last 15 years, legal interventions regarding transgender
equality have been framed in ways that mirror the equality paradigm used
in the lesbian and gay legal struggles.

The favored interventions have been anti-discrimination laws that
primarily focus on employment, and hate crimes laws aimed at increasing
awareness or punishment of non-state violence against transgender people.
Are the interventions actually the most significant for transgender
survival and increased political participation? This colloquium will
examine the fate of transgender people at the hands of the administrative
state, suggesting that the most significant barriers to survival actually
take place in the realms untouched by the traditional gay rights movement
interventions, such as identity documentation, sex segregation, and trans
health care coverage.

Dean Spade is currently a law teaching fellow at the Williams Institute at
UCLA Law School. In 2002, Dean founded the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, a
collective non-profit providing free legal assistance to transgender,
intersex, and gender non-conforming people facing poverty and racism.
Dean's writing has appeared in the Berkeley Women's Law Journal, the
Georgetown Journal of Gender and Law, the Widener Law Review and several
anthologies, including the recently released "Nobody Passes" (ed.
Sycamore) and "Transgender Rights" (ed. Currah).

For more information, call Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies at (612)

--------4 of 20--------

From: erin [at]
Subject: Pro-choice 1.22 5:30pm

Monday, January 22: Minnesota Pro-Choice Coalition. Roe Anniversary
Celebration Event. Spiritual thoughts and reflections on choice by Rabbi
Marcia Zimmerman and Pastor Mary Halvorson. $15 suggested donation, but
all are encourage to attend regardless of ability to pay. All proceeds
benefit the work of the Minnesota Pro-Choice Coalition. 5:30-7:30 PM.
Macalester Alumni House, 1644 Summit Avenue, St. Paul. RSVP to

--------5 of 20--------

From: Stephen Feinstein <feins001 [at]>
Subject: Somail diaspora 1.22 7pm

Somali Diaspora Project:  Somali Diaspora, The Journey Away
Monday, January 22, 2007, 7:00 PM-9:00 PM
Mapps Coffee and Tea, 1810 Riverside Avenue, Minneapolis, MN

Award-winning photographer Abdi Roble and writer Doug Rutledge will
present their work on the Somali Diaspora. For over three years, Roble and
Rutledge have documented the Somali community in Columbus, Ohio, and have
followed a family's journey from Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya to Anaheim,
California and Portland, Maine, documenting their process of adjusting to
life in America. Currently, Roble and Rutledge are documenting the Somali
community in Minneapolis.

Sponsored By:  Institute for Advanced Study and Immigration History
Research Center, University of Minnesota

For More Information Contact:  Institute for Advanced Study, (612)
626-5054, <ias>
Cost:  Free!

--------6 of 20--------

From: erin [at]
Subject: Pro-choice 1.22 8pm

January 22: Pro-Choice Resources and all the members of the Minnesota
Pro-Choice Coalition. Celebrate the 34th anniversary of Roe v Wade at the
Triple Rock Social Club, Minneapolis. Doors open at 8 PM. Show begins at 9
PM. Headliners include Dessa of Doomtree, Spider Fighter and Tina
Schlieske. Ages 18 and older. $10 in advance, $15 at the door.

--------7 of 20--------

From: Maria Inamagua Campaign for Justice <justiceformaria [at]>
Subject: ICE immigrants 1.23 9am

Planning Public Response to Commissioner Ortega's Proposal

Commissioner Ortega's proposal that Ramsey County Jail discontinue
accepting ICE detainees in the wake of Maria Inamagua's death and the
Worthngton Raids and the United States' broke immingration laws comes back
to the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday, January 23, 2007.

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>

Tuesday, 1/23, 9 am, protest against the Worthington raids and Maria
Inamagua's death, and demanding human rights standards for all 60 ICE
detainees in Ramsey Cty Jail, Ramsey County Courthouse, 3rd flood, 15 W
Kellogg Ave, St Paul.

--------8 of 20--------

From: CCHC MEDIA RELEASE <mediacontact [at]>
Subject: Newborn testing 1.23 9am

CCHC Action Forces MN Dept of Health to Hold Public Hearing on Revision of
Newborn Genetic Testing Rule The public is encouraged to attend the
hearing and send comments to the judge

St. Paul, Minnesota -- Due to the efforts of Citizens' Council on Health
Care (CCHC), the Minnesota Department of Health will hold a public hearing
on the department's proposed revision of the newborn screening rule. The
hearing is scheduled to take place in two weeks, on Tuesday, January 23,

"The health department's revised rule does not recognize the parent's
right to be given complete information about the government's newborn
genetic testing program. Before parents can make informed decisions about
their legal options - including the right to forgo testing or obtain
private testing for their baby - they must be told the whole story," said
Twila Brase, president of CCHC.

"Parents must not only be informed about the positive aspects of the
program; they must also be told about the negative aspects, including
current and potential future uses of the baby's genetic information," she

The state health department is required by law to hold a public hearing on
the proposed rule change if it receives at least 25 letters requesting a
hearing. Anyone interested in testifying can attend the hearing and sign
up to be heard. The public is also encouraged to send comments and
concerns to the judge prior to the hearing.

Public Hearing Details
Tuesday, January 23, 2007 Starts at 9:00 a.m. and continues until all
interested persons have been heard Freeman Building, Minnesota Department
of Health ROOM: 145-B MDH, 625 Robert St N, St. Paul, MN 55164

Public can send comments to the judge
In addition to public testimony taken at the hearing, the judge is
accepting the public's comments prior to the hearing. Send them to Judge
Barbara Neilson, Office of Administrative Hearings, 100 Washington Square,
Suite 1700, Minneapolis, MN 55401-2138. Email: barbara.neilson [at]
(reference "Newborn Screening Rule Chapter 4615" in subject line);
Telephone: 612-341-7604; Fax: 612-349-2665. CC the MN Dept. of Health:
NBSRule [at] (or mail to Patricia Segal Freeman, PO Box
64975, St. Paul, MN 55164-0899; Fax: 651-201-5501, Phone: 651-201-5414,

For more information on the proposed rule change, and the hearing:

Citizens' Council on Health Care is a non-profit, independent health care
policy organization that supports free-market ideas in health care.

Citizens' Council on Health Care 1954 University Ave. W, Ste. 8 St. Paul,
MN 55104 651-646-8935 ph 651-646-0100 fx

--------9 of 20--------

From: erin [at]
Subject: Immigration 1.23 10:45am

Tuesday, January 23: American Association of University Women, St. Paul
Branch. Meeting begins at 10:45 AM. 11 AM: Immigration: A Hot Topic for a
Winter Day with Sheila Stuhlman, staff attorney at the Immigrant Law
Center of Minnesota, who will cover a wide range of immigration issues
from illegal border crossings to trafficking to quotas.

--------10 of 20--------

From: Gilbert Schwartz <gil [at]>
Subject: Help animals 1.23 4pm

"Help Animals: Winter New Volunteer Meeting"

Become part of CAA! Learn how to help animals while socializing with other
vegetarians and vegans. Attend our Winter New Volunteer Meeting on
Tuesday, January 23!

At the meeting, we'll discuss who we are and what we do, as well as your
ideas for vegetarian and animal advocacy. We organize a huge variety of
events, and there is almost definitely something that you will be
interested in. Everyone is welcome, whether you are vegan, vegetarian, or
just interested in helping animals. Both students and community members
are encouraged to attend.

Mark your calendar and help us save thousands of animals this winter and
spring by becoming part of Compassionate Action for Animals!

Location: Coffman Union, rm 326
<> at the University of
Minnesota Time: 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. //Tues., January 23

If you can't make it to either meeting, feel free to fill out a volunteer
form <>
[] to stay informed about the
many ways you can help animals.

Gilbert Schwartz Campaign Coordinator Compassionate Action for Animals 300
Washington Ave SE, Rm. 126 Minneapolis, MN 55455
Office: 612-626-5785 Cell: 612-296-9020 gil [at]

--------11 of 20--------

From: patty <pattypax [at]>
Subject: Poetry salon 1.23 6:30pm

Tuesday, January 23, will be an open poetry salon.  Bring your own poetry
or come and listen to others. thanks, patty

Pax 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.

--------12 of 20--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Energy/war 1.23 6:30pm

Tuesday, 1/23, 6:30 pizza buffet ($6.99), 7 pm forum (free), Plymouth
Progressives sponsor Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer speaking on "Renewable Energy: A
way to End Current and Prevent Future Wars Focused on Oil and Gas,"
Angeno's, 3355 Plymouth Blvd off Highway 55, Plymouth.

--------13 of 20--------

From: Darrell Gerber <darrellgerber [at]>
Subject: I-35W bus  1.23 7pm

I-35W Bus Rapid Transit

Come to kick-off meeting
Tuesday, January 23
Field Community School
4645 Fourth Avenue S,

Help determine features of the new 46th Street and I-35W Bus Rapid Transit

Metro Transit is forming a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Group consisting of
frequent mass transportation users to determine features of the new 46th
Street & I35W Bus Rapid Transit Station. The BRT Group will meet every
fourth Tuesday from February to May 2007 from 7-8:30 at Field Community

The kick-off meeting will include a project overview, an introduction to
the public involvement process and the election of two at-large members.

The final Transit User Group membership includes:
- Field-Regina-Northrup and Tangletown neighborhood associations)
- Four neighborhood area members (selected from Kingfield, Field, Regina
and Tangletown neighborhoods)
- Two at-large members (selected from those who express interest at the
kick-off meeting or by sending a letter of interest)
- Minneapolis City Council Member Elizabeth Glidden
- Minneapolis City Council Member Scott Benson
- Metro Transit representative Jill Hentges

If you are interested in serving on the group as the neighborhood
association representative or as a neighborhood area representative please
contact your neighborhood association
and/or your 8th or 11th Ward City Council Representative

Letters of interest for at-large positions should be sent to:
Andrea Jenkins, 8th Ward Policy Aide
350 South Fifth Street
City Hall, Room 307
Minneapolis, MN 55415
andrea.jenkins [at]

Questions about the Kick-off meeting, other responsibilities of the BRT
Group, or Bus Rapid Transit itself should be directed to:
Jill Hentges, Metro Transit Community Outreach
560 Sixth Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55411
jill.hentges [at]

--------14 of 20--------

From: Kiera Coonan <kieracoonan [at]>
Subject: Arise nerds 1.23 7pm

Arise! Bookstore to Host Winter Film Series

Minneapolis, MN: Following up their summer events series, Arise! Bookstore
is hosting a weekly Winter Film Series to take place every Tuesday night
from January 2, 2006 through April 10, 2007.  The collection of films to
be featured in the series has been selected by volunteers and consists of
films about music, politics, books, and fun.  Every second and fourth
Tuesday, Arise will feature the Book Nerd/Film Nerd book club as a part of
the series: anyone can come get the featured book, watch the movie based
on the book, and hang out afterwards to discuss.  All films start at 7:00
P.M and the event is free.  Free popcorn will be provided to all who

Arise! is a collectively-run progressive bookstore and resource center
located in Uptown Minneapolis at 2441 Lyndale Ave S. 55404.  For further
information, please go to or contact Kiera Coonan at 651.399.6058


--------15 of 20--------

From: Brian Payne <brianpayneyvp [at]>
Subject: Janitors strike 1.23 7pm

Local 26 Solidarity Committee Meeting
Breaking News on the Janitors Strike!
Things are moving fast with the Twin Cities Justice for Janitors campaign.
Yesterday morning, there was an exciting action with around 30 janitors
and community allies to increase pressure on the building owners (see
below for a brief description and a link to a great article).

The next step is a Civil Disobedience training this Tuesday during the
Solidarity Committee meeting to plan for other upcoming actions.  Spread
word far and wide:

What: Local 26 Solidarity Committee Meeting / Civil Disobedience Training
When: Tuesday, January 23, 7pm
Where: 312 Central Ave., Suite 550

Members of the Building Owners Management Association (BOMA, which
represents the building owners of Minneapolis St. Paul) were surprised to
find their regular breakfast at the Golden Valley Country Club interrupted
by janitors and members of this solidarity committee.  Since BOMA has
repeatedly refused to even sit down and talk (!), the janitors decided it
was appropriate to bring their demands to the Country Club and the
building owners.  The party crashers held signs and called on BOMA to meet
with Local 26.  BOMA was so afraid during the action they forcibly threw
out a cameraman!

BOMA continues to claim that they have nothing to do with the janitors and
the contractors (ABM, Marsden, etc).  The janitors, however, see right
through this, and will continue pressuring BOMA until they agree to sit
down and help the janitors get affordable family healthcare.

For a great article about the action, check out Work Day Minnesota's

--------16 of 20--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
From: Editors | Outsiders Within anthology <outsiderswithin [at] >
Subject: Transracial adoption 1.23 7pm

AK Connection Book Event
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
7-8:30 p.m.
Coffee Bene in St. Paul

Come meet local contributors to the book, "Outsiders Within".

"Outsiders Within" is an anthology of works written by transracial
adoptees. This book explores various points of views on international
adoption. There will be a panel discussion with local Korean adoptee book
contributors and a question and answer session.

Panelists to include: Sun Yung Shin, Jae Ran Kim, Ami Nafzger, Kim Park
Nelson, and Beth Kyong Lo

Books are available at bookstores or at the event for $20. We encourage
you to read pieces by the panelists before the event, but pre-reading is
not required. This event is open to everyone. Please submit any questions
for the contributors. These will presented at the event. Send questions
and RSVP to Susie Lewis ssonglewis [at] , 651-308-3121

Coffee Bene 53 Cleveland Ave S St Paul, MN 55105
(651) 698-2266

Sun Yung Shin Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption South End
Press, September 2006
outsiderswithin [at]

"It is critical - at a time when right-wing political forces are achieving
global dominance - that a real transnational feminist solidarity be
created, one that leads women to fight for each others' most basic human
rights to parent their own children and that rejects transactions that pit
(birth) mother against (adoptive) mother." - Julia Chinyere Oparah, Sun
Yung Shin & Jane Jeong Trenka, Outsiders Within

Shannon Gibney 612-210-8049 (cell)

--------17 of 20--------

From: Minnesota Cuba Committee <mncuba [at]>
Subject: Cuba 1.23 7pm

The Minnesota Cuba Committee will meet at 7:00, Tuesday, January 23, at
Holy Trinity Church, 2730 E. 31st Street, Minneapolis.

The agenda will include planning for a Cuba report-back on February 9 by
members just returned from Cuba, a film series at MAPPS coffee house, and
the Pastors for Peace/Venceremos Brigade summer trips, as well as other

For more information call 612 623-3452 or 651 983-398.1

--------18 of 20--------

The Semiotics of Iniquity
Hillary Clinton and the Pro-Israel Lobby
by Joshua Frank
January 21, 2007

George W. Bush's position on Iran is "disturbing" and "dangerous", reads
a position paper written in late 2005 by American Israel Public Affairs
Committee (AIPAC). One year ago the Bush administration accepted a Russian
proposal to allow Iran to continue to develop nuclear energy under Russian
supervision. Needless to say, AIPAC wasn't the least bit happy about the

In a letter to congressional allies, mostly Democrats, the pro-Israel
organization admitted is was "concerned that the decision not to go to the
Security Council, combined with the U.S. decision to support the 'Russian
proposal,' indicates a disturbing shift in the Administration's policy on
Iran and poses a danger to the U.S. and our allies."

Israel, however, continues to develop a substantial nuclear arsenal. In
2000 the British Broadcasting Corporation reported that Israel has likely
produced enough plutonium to make up to 200 nuclear weapons. So, it is
safe to say that Israel's bomb building technologies are light years ahead
of Iran's budding nuclear program. Yet Israel still won't admit they have
capacity to produce such deadly weapons.

Meanwhile, as AIPAC and Israel pressure the US government to force the
Iran issue to the UN Security Council, Israel itself stands in violation
of numerous UN Resolutions dealing with the occupied territories of
Palestine, including UN Resolution 1402, which in part calls on Israel to
withdraw its military from all Palestinian cities at once.

AIPAC's hypocrisy is nauseating. The goliath lobbying organization wants
Iran to cease to procure nukes while the crimes of Israel continue to be
ignored. So who is propping up AIPAC's hypocritical position? None other
than Democratic presidential candidate, Senator Hillary Clinton of New

As one of the top Democratic recipient of pro-Israel funds for the 2006
election cycle, pocketing over $83,000, Senator Clinton now has Iran in
her cross hairs.

During a Hanukkah dinner speech delivered in December of 2005 hosted by
Yeshiva University, Clinton prattled, "I held a series of meetings with
Israeli officials [last summer], including the prime minister and the
foreign minister and the head of the [Israeli Defense Force] to discuss
such challenges we confront. In each of these meetings, we talked at
length about the dire threat posed by the potential of a nuclear-armed
Iran, not only to Israel, but also to Europe and Russia. Just this week,
the new president of Iran made further outrageous comments that attacked
Israel's right to exist that are simply beyond the pale of international
discourse and acceptability. During my meeting with Prime Minister Ariel
Sharon, I was reminded vividly of the threats that Israel faces every hour
of every day ... It became even more clear how important it is for the
United States to stand with Israel..."

As Sen. Clinton embraces Israel's violence, as well as AIPAC's fraudulent
posture on Iran, she simultaneously ignores the hostilities inflicted upon
Palestine, as numerous Palestinians have been killed during the continued
shelling of the Gaza Strip over the past year.

Clinton's silence toward Israel's brutality implies the senator will
continue to support AIPAC's mission to occupy the whole of the occupied
territories, as well as a war on Iran. AIPAC is correct -- even President
Bush appears to be a little sheepish when up against the warmongering of
Hillary Clinton.

*  *  *  *

Hillary, along with her husband Bill, paid a visit to Israel in the fall
of 2005. The former president was a featured speaker at a mass rally that
marked the 10th anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak
Rabin. It was Hillary's second visit to Israel since she was elected to
office in 2000.

The senator did manage to take time out of her tour to meet with the then
semi-conscious Ariel Sharon to discuss "security matters." Hillary also
made her way to the great apartheid wall, which separates Palestine from
Israel. As the barrier is nearing completion, as the monstrosity to a
completion it will ultimately stretch to over 400 miles in length.

Palestinians rightly criticize the obtrusive wall on the grounds that it
cuts them off from occupied land in the West Bank. Thousands more will be
cut off from their jobs, schools, and essential farmland.

Hillary and her pro-Israel buds don't get it. When you put powerless
Palestinians behind a jail-like wall where life in any real economic sense
is unattainable, you wreak pain and anguish, which in turn leads to more
anger and resentment toward the Israeli government's brutal policies.
Indeed, the wall will not prove to be a deterrent to resistance, but an
incitement to defiance.

"This is not against the Palestinian people," Clinton said as she gazed
over the massive wall. "This is against the terrorists. The Palestinian
people have to help to prevent terrorism. They have to change the
attitudes about terrorism."

The senator's comments seem as if they were taken word-for-word from an
AIPAC position paper. They may well have been as the lobby packs her
coffers full of cash. In May of 2005 Sen. Clinton spoke at an AIPAC
conference where she praised the bonds between Israel and the United

[O]ur future here in this country is intertwined with the future of Israel
and the Middle East. Now there is a lot that we could talk about, and
obviously much has been discussed. But in the short period that I have
been given the honor of addressing you, I want to start by focusing on our
deep and lasting bonds between the United States and Israel.

Clinton went on to address about the importance of disarming Iran and
Syria as well as keeping troops in Iraq for as long as "it" takes. It was
textbook warmongering and surprise, surprise -- Hillary got a standing
ovation for her repertoire.

It is no matter that Iraq will never see true democracy. The US won't
allow that. Our government will never allow a free Iraq to form that
embodied even the slightest disgust toward Israel or America. Democracy in
Iraq, like democracy in Israel, has clear limitations.

Similar to her husband and the current president, Hillary Clinton will
never alter the US' Middle East policy that so blatantly favors Israeli

Joshua Frank is Co-Editor of Dissident Voice, and the author of Left Out!
How Liberals Helped Reelect George W. Bush. He edits, the
official blog of Dissident Voice. He can be reached at:
joshua [at]

--------19 of 20--------

Hillary for President?
by Cindy Sheehan
January 21, 2007

Thirteen people killed in a helicopter crash yesterday in Iraq. Four
other soldiers and one marine were also killed.

30 people dead in the last two days in a war that Senator Hillary Clinton
has supported since she first voted "yea" to give Bloody George
carte-blanche to invade Iraq and her continuing support via her "yea"
votes on giving the war-addict in the White House the key to the treasury.

Soon after Camp Casey in August, 05, I was meeting with some Hollywood
people who pretended that they supported me, but really were big money
donors and supporters of Hillary. I was told that the Senator was really
against the war, but she was waiting for the politically correct time to
come out against it. I was told that she was the best hope for the
Democrats in 2008, and I should give her a break.

I don't know who Mr. and Mrs. Hollywood and Mr. Hollywood Got Rocks
thought that they were talking to. My son was used as a "soldier of
Christ" in BushCo's crusade against the world and a political pawn in such
pro-war Democrat's moves to the White House. I was disgusted and noted
this in many blogs that I wrote at the time.

I supported the candidate for Senate in New York that ran a very
courageous, anti-war race against Clinton: Jonathan Tasini. CODEPINK New
York did amazing work dogging the Senator and her supporters everywhere
that she went and outing the fact that she is a Republican in Democratic
clothing. Unfortunately, the people of New York spoke and Clinton, the
pro-war candidate beat out Jonathan. The conservative area that she and
President Clinton moved their carpet bags to after their presidency was
over had a major impact on the last elections.

I, my sister, Dede, and another Gold Star Mother, Lynn Braddach, whose
son, Travis Nall was killed in Iraq in 2003, met with Sen. Clinton in DC
in September of 2005. We poured our hearts and souls out to her. We cried
as we told her of our sons and our fear for the people of Iraq and the
escalating body count of our brave young people. She sat there stone-faced
and walked out and told Sarah Ferguson, of the Village Voice, "My bottom
line is that I don't want their sons to die in vain . . . I don't believe
it's smart to set a date for withdrawal . . . I don't think it's the right
time to withdraw." She may as well have slapped us in the face using
Bloody George's line and using our son's
sacrifice to justify her war-mongering.

On Thursday, January 18th, Senator Clinton introduced a meaningless bill
to put a cap on the number of soldiers that can be in Iraq set at January
1st levels. It is as weak and meaningless as the non-binding resolution
and a politically safe move, since almost  of the country oppose the war
and oppose Bloody George. When she introduced her Senate bill last
Thursday, over 1000 of our young people have come home in body bags and
tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis have died while she was waiting for
the best political time to be semi-against the war. How many of our troops
are lying in Walter Reed with devastating injuries that could have been
prevented if a Senate leader like Clinton would have taken a moral,
instead of political stance?

This occupation of Iraq can't be won by being smarter -- it was lost
before we went in. The US, again, were big losers in a capricious military
expedition with the support of Senator Clinton. She is an amazingly
brilliant person and she cannot say that she was fooled, or lied to by
George. We, the American public can be brilliant to, and we can't buy that

In 2005, I was dying to support Hillary for president: finally a bright
woman with experience. However, she is a champion fence sitter and
politically heartless.

I, again, affirm my commitment to peace. I don't care if it is a man or a
woman; Democrat or Republican; white or black; Christian, Jew or
otherwise. I will only support a candidate who is courageously and
uncompromisingly committed to peace.

Hillary Clinton is not that person. She never will be. History speaks
louder than words.

Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Spc. Casey Sheehan who was killed in Bush's
war of terror on 04/04/04. She is the co-founder and president of Gold
Star Families for Peace and the Camp Casey Peace Institute. She is the
author of three books, the most recent is Peace Mom: A Mother's Journey
Through Heartache to Activism.

[Nevertheless, however rotten she is or becomes, many of us are going to
hold our noses and our sphincters and vote for effing Hillary in 2008, for
the standard failed reason that the double-effing republican is worse.
Imagine choosing a husband or wife that way: Dear X - you stink really
bad, but not as bad as peeyoupooperous Y - so marry me! - ed]

--------20 of 20--------

Life on the Plantation   [part 2 of 2]
By Bill Moyers
t r u t h o u t | Address
Friday 12 January 2007

Then there are the social costs of "free trade." For over a decade, free
trade has hovered over the political system like a biblical commandment,
striking down anything - trade unions, the environment, indigenous rights,
even the constitutional standing of our own laws passed by our elected
representatives - that gets in the way of unbridled greed. The broader
negative consequences of this agenda - increasingly well-documented by
scholars - get virtually no attention in the dominant media. Instead of
reality, we get optimistic multicultural scenarios of coordinated global
growth, and instead of substantive debate, we get a stark, formulaic
choice between free trade to help the world and gloomy sounding
"protectionism" that will set everyone back.

The degree to which this has become a purely ideological debate, devoid of
any factual basis that can help people weigh net gains and losses, is
reflected in Thomas Friedman's astonishing claim, stated not long ago in a
television interview, that he endorsed the Central American Free Trade
Agreement (CAFTA) without even reading it - that is, simply because it
stood for "free trade." We have reached the stage when the pooh-bahs of
punditry only have to declare the world is flat for everyone to agree it
is, without even going to the edge to look for themselves.

I think what's happened is not indifference or laziness or incompetence
but the fact that most journalists on the plantation have so internalized
conventional wisdom that they simply accept that the system is working as
it should. I'm working on a documentary about the role of the press in the
run-up to the war, and over and again reporters have told me it just never
occurred to them that high officials would manipulate intelligence in
order to go to war.


Similarly, the question of whether our political and economic system is
truly just or not is off the table for investigation and discussion by
most journalists. Alternative ideas, alternative critiques, alternative
visions rarely get a hearing, and uncomfortable realities are obscured,
such as growing inequality, the re-segregation of our public schools, the
devastating onward march of environmental deregulation - all examples of
what happens when independent sources of knowledge and analysis are so few
and far between on the plantation.

So if we need to know what is happening, and big media won't tell us; if
we need to know why it matters, and big media won't tell us; if we need to
know what to do about it, and big media won't tell us - it's clear what we
have to do: we have to tell the story ourselves.

And this is what the plantation owners fear most of all. Over all those
decades here in the South when they used human beings as chattel and
quoted scripture to justify it (property rights over human rights was
God's way), they secretly lived in fear that one day instead of saying,
"Yes, Massa," those gaunt, weary, sweat-soaked field hands bending low
over the cotton under the burning sun would suddenly stand up straight,
look around at their stooped and sweltering kin, and announce: "This can't
be the product of intelligent design. The bossman's been lying to me.
Something is wrong with this system." This is the moment freedom begins -
the moment you realize someone else has been writing your story and it's
time you took the pen from his hand and started writing it yourself. When
the garbage workers struck here in 1968, and the walls of these buildings
echoed with the cry "I am a man," they were writing their own story.
Martin Luther King came here to help them tell it, only to die on the
balcony of the Lorraine Motel. The bullet killed him, but it couldn't kill
the story. You can't kill the story once the people start writing it.

So I'm back now where I started - with you - and will travel where the
movement is headed. The greatest challenge to the plantation mentality of
the media giants is the innovation and expression made possible by the
digital revolution. I may still prefer the newspaper for its investigative
journalism and in-depth analysis, but we now have in our hands the means
to tell a different story than big media tells. Our story. The other story
of America that says free speech is not just corporate speech, that news
is not just chattel in the field, living the bossman's story. This is the
real gift of the digital revolution. The Internet, cell phones and digital
cameras that can transmit images over the Internet, make possible a nation
of story tellers ... every citizen a Tom Paine. Let the man in the big
house on Pennsylvania Avenue think that over. And the woman of the House
on Capitol Hill. And the media moguls in their chalets at Sun Valley,
gathered to review the plantation's assets and multiply them. Nail it to
their door - they no longer own the copyright to America's story - it's
not a top-down story anymore. Other folks are going to write the story
from the ground up and the truth will be out, that the media plantation,
like the cotton plantation of old, is not divinely sanctioned, and it's
not the product of natural forces; the media system we have been living
under was created behind closed doors, where the power brokers meet to
divvy up the spoils.

Bob McChesney has eloquently reminded us through the years how each medium
- radio, television, and cable - was hailed as a technology that would
give us greater diversity of voices, serious news, local programs and lots
of public service for the community. In each case, the advertisers took
over. Despite what I teasingly told you in St. Louis the last time we were
together, the star that shined so brightly in the firmament the year I was
born -1934 - did not, I regret to say, appear above that little house in
Hugo, Oklahoma. It appeared over Washington, when Congress enacted the
Communications Act of 1934. One hundred times in that cornerstone or our
communications policy you will read the phrase "public interest,
convenience and necessity." Educators, union officials, religious leaders,
parents were galvanized by the promise of radio as "a classroom for the
air," serving the life of the country and the life of the mind. Then the
media lobby cut a deal with the government to make certain nothing would
threaten the already vested interests of powerful radio networks and the
advertising industry. Soon the public largely forgot about radio's promise
as we accepted the entertainment produced and controlled by Jell-o,
Maxwell House, and Camel cigarettes. What happened to radio happened to
television, and then to cable, and if we are not diligent, it will happen
to the Internet.

Powerful forces are at work now - determined to create our media future
for the benefit of the plantation: investors, advertisers, owners, and the
parasites who depend on their indulgence, including much of the governing
class. Old media acquire new media, and vice versa. Rupert Murdoch,
forever savvy about the next key outlet that will attract eyeballs,
purchased MySpace, spending nearly $600 million so he could (in the words
of how Wall Street views new media) "monetize" those eyeballs. Google
became a partner in Time Warner, investing one billion in its AOL online
service, and now Google has bought YouTube so it would have a better
vehicle for delivering interactive ads for Madison Avenue. Viacom,
Microsoft, large ad agencies, and others, have been buying key media
properties - many of them the leading online sites. The result will be a
thoroughly commercialized environment - a media plantation for the 21st
century, dominated by the same corporate and ideological forces that have
produced the system we have today.

So what do we do? Well, you've shown us what we have to do. Twice now
you've shown us what we can do. Four years ago, when FCC Chairman Michael
Powell and his ideological sidekicks decided that it was OK if a single
corporation owned a community's major newspaper, three of its TV stations,
eight radio stations, its cable TV system, and its major broadband
Internet provider, you said, "Enough's enough." Free Press, Common Cause,
Consumers Union, Media Access Project, the National Association for
Hispanic Journalists, and others, working closely with Commissioners
Adelstein and Copps - two of the most public-spirited men ever to serve on
the FCC - began organizing public hearings across the country. People
spoke up about how poorly the media was serving their communities. You
flooded Congress with petitions. You never let up, and when the Court said
Powell had to back off, the decision cited the importance of involving the
public in these media decisions. Incidentally, Powell not only backed off,
he backed out. He left the commission to become "senior advisor" at a
"private investment firm specializing in equity investments in media
companies around the world." That firm, by the way, made a bid to take
over both the Tribune and Clear Channel, two mega-media companies that
just a short time ago were under the corporate-friendly purview of ... you
guessed it ... Michael Powell. That whishing sound you hear is
Washington's perpetually revolving door, through which they come to serve
the public and through which they leave to join the plantations.

You made a difference. You showed the public cares about media and
democracy. You turned a little-publicized vote on a seemingly arcane
regulation into a big political fight and public debate. Now it's true, as
Commissioner Copps has reminded us, since that battle three years ago
there have been more than 3,300 TV and radio stations that have had their
assignment and transfer grants approved. "So that even under the old
rules, consolidation grows, localism suffers and diversity dwindles." It's
also true that even as we speak Michael Powell's successor, Kevin Martin,
put there by President Bush, is ready to take up where Powell left off and
give the green light to more conglomeration. Get ready to fight. Inside
the beltway plantation the media thought this largest telecommunications
merger in our history was on a fast track for approval.

But then you did it again more recently - you lit a fire under people to
put Washington on notice that it had to guarantee the Internet's First
Amendment protection in the $85 billion merger of AT&T and Bell South.
Because of you, the so-called "Internet neutrality" - I much prefer to
call it the "equal access" provision of the Internet - became a public
issue that once again reminded the powers-that-be that people want the
media to foster democracy. This is crucial, because in a few years
virtually all media will be delivered by high speed broadband, and without
equality of access, the net could become just like cable television, where
the provider decides what you see and what you pay. After all, the Bush
department of justice had blessed the deal last October without a single
condition or statement of concern. But they hadn't reckoned with Michael
Copps and Jonathan Adelstein, and they hadn't reckoned with this movement.
FreePress and orchestrated 800 organizations, a
million and a half petitions, countless local events, legions of homemade
videos, smart collaboration with allies in industry, and a topshelf
communications campaign. Who would have imagined that sitting together, in
the same democratic broadband pew, would be the Christian Coalition, Gun
Owners of America, Common Cause, and Who would have imagined
that these would link arms with some of the most powerful "new media"
companies to fight for the Internet's First Amendment ground? We owe a tip
of the hat, of course, to Republican Commissioner Robert McDowell. Despite
what must have been a great deal of pressure from his side, he did the
honorable thing and recused himself from the proceedings because of a
conflict of interest. So AT&T had to cry "uncle" to Copps and Adelstein
with a "voluntary commitment" to honor equal access for at least two
years. The agreement marks the first time that the Federal government has
imposed true neutrality - oops, equality - requirements on an Internet
access provider since the debate erupted almost two years ago. I believe
you changed the terms of the debate. It is no longer about whether
equality of access will govern the future of the Internet; it's about when
and how. It also signals a change from defense to offense for the backers
of an open Net. Arguably the biggest, most effective online organizing
campaign ever conducted on a media issue can now turn to passing good laws
rather than always having to fight to block bad ones. Senator Byron
Dorgan, a Democrat, and Senator Olympia Snowe, a Republican, introduced
the Internet Freedom Preservation Act in January of 2007, to require fair
and equitable access to all content. And over in the House, those
champions of the public interest - Ed Markey and Maurice Hinchley - will
be leading the fight.

But a caveat here. Those other folks don't give up so easily. Remember,
this agreement is only for two years, and they'll be back with all the
lobbyists money can hire. Furthermore, consider what AT&T got in the
bargain. For giving up on neutrality, it got the green light from
government to dominate over 67 million phone lines in 22 states, almost 12
million broadband users, and total control over Cingular wireless, the
country's largest mobile phone company with 58 million cell phone users.
It's as if China swallowed India.

I bring this up for a reason. Big media is ravenous. It never gets enough,
it always wants more. And it will stop at nothing to get it. These are
imperial conglomerates. Last week on his Web site, Danny
Schecter recalled how some years ago he marched with a band of media
activists to the headquarters of all the big media companies concentrated
in the Times Square area. Their formidable buildings, fronted with logos
and limos and guarded by rent-a-cops, projected their power and prestige.
Danny and his cohorts chanted and held up signs calling for honest news
and an end to exploitive programming. They called for diversity and access
for more perspectives. "It felt good," Danny said, but "seemed like a
fool's errand. We were ignored, patronized, and marginalized. We couldn't
shake their edifices or influence their holy 'business models'; we seemed
to many like that lonely and forlorn nut in a New Yorker cartoon carrying
an 'end of the world is near' placard."

Well, yes, that's exactly how they want us to feel - as if media and
democracy is a fool's errand. To his credit, Danny didn't buy it. He's
never given up. Neither have some of the earlier pioneers in this movement
- Andy Schwartzman, Don Hazen, Jeff Chester. Let me confess that I came
very close to not making this speech today, in favor of just getting up
here and reading from this book - Digital Destiny, by my friend and
co-conspirator, Jeff Chester. Take my word for it: Make this your bible.
As Don Hazen writes in his review on Alternet this week, it's a terrific
book - "A respectful, loving, fresh, intimate, comprehensive history of
the struggles for a 'democratic media' - the lost fights, the
opportunities missed, and the small victories that have kept the corporate
media system from having complete carte blanche over the communications

It's also a terrifying book, because Jeff describes how "we are being
shadowed online by a slew of software digital gumshoes working for Madison
Avenue. Our movements in cyberspace are closely tracked and analyzed. And
interactive advertising infiltrates our unconsciousness to promote the
'brandwashing of America.'" Jeff asks the hard questions: do we really
want television sets that monitor what we watch? Or an Internet that knows
what sites we visit and reports back to advertising companies? Do we
really want a media system designed mainly for advertisers?

But this is also a hopeful book. After scaring the bejeepers out of us, as
one reviewer wrote, Jeff offers a "policy agenda for the broadcast era."
Here's a man who practices what the Italian philosopher Gramsci called
"the pessimism of the intellect and the optimism of the will." He sees the
world as it is, without rose-colored glasses, and tries to change it
despite what he knows. So you'll find here the core of this movement's
mission. Media reform, yes. But as the Project in Excellence concluded in
its State of the Media Report for 2006, "At many old-media companies,
though not all, the decades-long battle at the top between idealists and
accountants is now over. The idealists have lost." The commercial networks
are lost, too - lost to silliness, farce, cowardice, and ideology. Not
much hope there. Can't raise the dead.

Policy reform, yes. "But," says Jeff, "we will likely see more
consolidation of ownership, with newspapers, TV stations, and major online
properties in fewer hands." So we have to find other ways to ensure the
public has access to diverse, independent, and credible sources of
information. That means going to the market to find support for stronger
independent media; Michael Moore and others have proved progressivism
doesn't have to equal penury. It means helping protect news gathering from
predatory forces. It means fighting for more participatory media,
hospitable to a full range of expression. It means building on Lawrence
Lessig's notion of the creative common and Brewster Kahle's Internet
archives with its philosophy of universal access to all knowledge." It
means bringing broadband service to those many millions of Americans too
poor to participate in the digital revolution. It means ownership for
women and people of color. It means reclaiming public broadcasting and
restoring it to its original feisty, robust, fearless mission as an
alternative to the dominant media, offering journalism you can't ignore -
public affairs of which you're a part, and a wide range of civic and
cultural discourse that leaves no one out; you can have an impact here. We
need to remind people that the Federal commitment to public broadcasting
in this country is about $1.50 per capita compared to $28-$85 per capita
in other democracies.

But there's something else you can do. In moments of reverie, I imagine
all of you returning home to organize a campaign to persuade your local
public television station to start airing Amy Goodman's broadcast of
Democracy NOW! I can't think of a single act more likely to remind people
of what public broadcasting should be - or that this media reform movement
really means business. We've got to get alternative content out there to
people, or this country's going to die of too many lies. And the opening
rundown of news on Amy's daily show is like nothing else on television,
corporate or public. It's as if you opened the window and a fresh breeze
rolls over you from the ocean. Amy doesn't practice trickle-down
journalism. She goes where the silence is, she breaks the sound barrier.
She doesn't buy the Washington protocol that says the truth lies somewhere
on the spectrum of opinion between the Democrats and Republicans - on
Democracy NOW, the truth lies where the facts are hidden, and Amy digs for
them. And she believes the media should be a sanctuary for dissent ... the
Underground Railroad tunneling beneath the plantation. So go home and
think about it. After all, you are the public in public broadcasting; you
can get the bossman in the big house at the local station to listen.

Meanwhile, be vigilant about what happens in Congress. Track it day by day
and post what you learn far and wide. Because the decisions made in this
session of Congress will affect the future of all media - corporate and
non commercial - and if we lose the future now, we'll never get it back.

So you have your work cut out for you. I'm glad you're all younger than
me, and up to it. I'm glad so many funders are here, because while an army
may move on its stomach, this movement requires hard, cold cash to compete
with big media in getting the attention of Congress and the public.

I'll try to do my part. Last time we were together, I said to you that I
should put detractors on notice. They just might compel me out of the
rocking chair and back into the anchor chair. Well, in April I will be
back with a new weekly series called Bill Moyers Journal. I hope to
complement the fine work of colleagues like David Brancaccio of NOW and
David Fanning of Frontline, who also go for the truth behind the news.

But I don't want to tease you - I'm not coming back because of my
detractors. I wouldn't torture them that way (I'll leave that to Dick
Cheney). I'm coming back because I believe television can still signify.
And I don't want you to feel so alone.

I'll keep an eye on your work. You are to America what the abolition
movement was, and the suffragette movement, and the Civil Rights movement
- you touch the soul of democracy.

It's not assured you'll succeed in this fight. The armies of the Lord are
up against mighty hosts. But as the spiritual leader Sojourner Thomas
Merton wrote to an activist grown weary and discouraged while protesting
the Vietnam War ... "Do not depend on the hope of results ... concentrate
on the value ... and the truth of the work itself."

And in case you do get lonely, I'll leave you with this:

As my plane was circling Memphis the other day, I looked out across those
vast miles of fertile soil that once were plantations watered by the
Mississippi River and the sweat from the brow of countless men and women
who had been forced to live someone else's story. I thought about how in
time they rose up, one here, then two, then many, forging a great movement
that awakened America's conscience and brought us close to the elusive but
beautiful promise of the Declaration of Independence. As we made our last
approach to land, the words of a Marge Piercy poem began to form in my
head, and I remembered all over again why we were coming here:

What can they do
to you? Whatever they want.
They can set you up, they can
bust you, they can break
your fingers, they can
burn your brain with electricity,
blur you with drugs till you
can't walk, can't remember, they can
take your child, wall up
your lover. They can do anything
you can't stop them
from doing. How can you stop
them? Alone, you can fight,
you can refuse, you can
take what revenge you can
but they roll over you.

But two people fighting
back to back can cut through
a mob, a snake-dancing file
can break a cordon, an army
can meet an army.

Two people can keep each other
sane, can give support, conviction,
love, massage, hope, sex.
Three people are a delegation,
a committee, a wedge. With four
you can play bridge and start
an organization. With six
you can rent a whole house,
eat pie for dinner with no
seconds, and hold a fund raising party.
A dozen make a demonstration.
A hundred fill a hall.
A thousand have solidarity and your own newsletter;
ten thousand, power and your own paper;
a hundred thousand, your own media;
ten million, your own country.

It goes on one at a time,
it starts when you care
to act, it starts when you do
it again after they said no,
it starts when you say We
and know who you mean, and each
day you mean one more.

>From The Moon Is Always Female, by Marge Piercy
Copyright 1980 by Marge Piercy

Bill Moyers is Chairman of the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy.


   - David Shove             shove001 [at]
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