Progressive Calendar 03.02.07
From: David Shove (
Date: Fri, 2 Mar 2007 02:48:00 -0800 (PST)
            P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R    03.02.07

1. Ffunch           3.02 11:30am CANCELLED

2. Intl womens day  3.03 8am
3. Venezuela        3.03 10am
4. Homeless vets    3.03 10am
5. Libraries        3.03 10am
6. NWN4P vigils     3.03 11am
7. RNC planning     3.03 12noon
8. StP Green Party  3.03 12noon
9. Northtown vigil  3.03 1pm
10. Review the cops 3.03 1:30PM
11. SOA/potluck     3.03 5pm
12. Moon walk/snow  3.03 7pm

13. Eco/war/films   3.04 12:30pm
14. VigilStillwater 3.04 1pm
15. Immigration     3.04 2pm
16. AIDS musical    3.04 5pm

17. PC Roberts       - Americans have lost their country
18. Harvey Wasserman - The sham of nuclear power
19. George Galloway  - These orchestrated attacks on Chavez are a travesty
20. Mike Whitney     - Market meltdown: the dead hand of Greenspan

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

From: David Shove <shove001 [at]>
Subject: Ffunch 3.02 11:30am CANCELLED snow

First Friday Lunch (FFUNCH) for Greens/progressives.
Informal political talk and hanging out.
Day By Day Cafe 477 W 7th Av St Paul.
Meet in the private room (holds 12+).
Day By Day has soups, salads, sandwiches, and dangerous apple pie; is
close to downtown St Paul & on major bus lines

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

From: wamm <wamm [at]>
Subject: Intl womens day 3.03 8am

International Women's Day Celebration: Crossing Borders, Crossing

Saturday, March 3, 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. University of Minnesota, Coffman
Memorial Union, 300 Washington Avenue Southeast. Film screenings, photo
exhibits, performances, information tables, and workshops. Keynote
speaker: Maria Jose Alcala of the United Nations Population Fund. Free and
open to the public. Presented by: Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights and
the Human Rights Program at the University of Minnesota. FFI: Visit

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

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Venezuela 3.03 10am

Saturday, 3/3, 10 to 11:30 am, Sergio Sanchez speaks on "Venezuela after the
Elections: Relations with the United States," Resource Center of the
Americas, 3019 Minnehaha Ave, Mpls.

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

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Homeless vets 3.03 10am

Saturday, 3/3 (and each 1st Saturday), 10 to 11:30 am, Homeless Veterans for
Peace meeting, Peacehouse, 510 E Franklin Ave, Mpls.  Bob Heberle at

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

From: Cam Gordon <CamGordon333 [at]>
Subject: Libraries 3.03 10am

Library "Consolidation" Meetings.  Two library advisory groups are
wrapping up their deliberations on a possible merger of the Minneapolis
and Hennepin County library systems.  Representatives of the City, Library
Board and County will discuss why a merger is being considered and what
changes a unified system might bring at a series of upcoming meetings:

Saturday, March 3, 10 - 11:30 am, North Regional Library, 1315 Lowry Ave N
Monday, March 5, 6:30-8 pm, Minneapolis Central Library, 300 Nicollet Mall
Thursday, March 8, 7 - 8:30 pm, Nokomis Library, 5100 34th Ave S

This is a very serious decision that will have long term consequences for
our city for generations to come.  It is essential that questions and
concerns about this proposal be brought up quickly.  There appears to be
strong support for this idea from the County Board, the City Council and
Mayor and the Library Board.  Though no Council committee has formally
reviewed the work of the advisory groups so far, there is growing support
for turning the Minneapolis system over to the County.  I have concerns
that we, as a community and as a Council, are not taking the necessary
time to study, consider and discuss alternatives.  If turning our public
libraries over to the County is the alternative that will be chosen, I
think that it is very important that we make certain that the people of
Minneapolis get the best deal possible in the transaction.  If you care
about the library system and have ideas or concerns about this, please get
involved.  For more information, please go here:
and here:

East Lake Library Grand Opening.  The newly renovated East Lake Library
(2727 E Lake S) will be re-opening March 3.  Please join me at the grand
opening celebration Saturday from 1-6 PM.

Cam Gordon Minneapolis City Council Member, Second Ward 673-2202, 296-0579
cam [at]

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

From: Carole Rydberg <carydberg [at]>
Subject: NWN4P vigils 3.03 11am

There are now two NWN4P weekly demonstrations as follows:

NWN4P-Plymouth demonstration- Every Saturday, 11 AM to noon, along
Vinewood, just north of 42nd Ave.  and one block east of 494 in Plymouth.
Drive toward the Rainbow and Target Greatland on Vinewood, turn right by
Bakers Square and right again into the parking lot near the sidewalk.
Bring your own sign or use ours.

NWN4P-Minnetonka demonstration- Every Saturday, 11 AM to noon, at Hwy. 7
and 101.  Park in the Target Greatland lot; meet near the entrance
fountain. Bring your own signs or use ours.

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

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
Subject: RNC planning 3.03 12noon

Meeting THIS Saturday 3/3 @ 12noon
Sabathani Community Center
310 East 38th Street, Minneapolis
Office of Welfare Rights Committee (room #207)

The Republican National Convention is coming to the Twin Cities in
September 2008. The eyes of the world will be on St. Paul, as the
Republicans meet to nominate their next candidate for President. But the
real news will be breaking on the streets outside the Xcel Center, as
progressive people from around the country gather to protest.  We will
demand that U.S. troops get out of Iraq. We will call for money for human
needs, not for war. We will protest the Republican Agenda, and in its
place, demand peace, justice and equality.

This meeting is for all individuals or organizations who want to be
involved in organizing our response to the RNC in 2008. Bring your plans,
your ideas, your questions and your enthusiasm. Please share this invite
with others. Contact jess [at]
<> if you have questions or can't make
this meeting but want to stay informed about future meetings or

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

From: ed
Subject: StP Green Party 3.03 12noon

All people interested in finding out more about the Green Party of St. Paul
are invited to:

Our monthly meeting
First Saturday of every month
noon until 2 pm
Rice street library   -new location-
1011 Rice Street, St. Paul

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

From: Lennie <major18 [at]>
Subject: Northtown vigil 3.03 1pm

Mounds View peace vigil EVERY SATURDAY from 1-2pm at the at the southeast
corner of the intersection of Co. Hwy 10 and University Ave NE in Blaine,
which is the northwest most corner of the Northtown Mall area. This is a
MUCH better location.

We'll have extra signs.  Communities situated near the Northtown Mall
include: Blaine, Mounds View, New Brighton, Roseville, Shoreview, Arden
Hills, Spring Lake Park, Fridley, and Coon Rapids.

For further information, email major18 [at] or call Lennie at

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

From: Michelle Gross <mgresist [at]>
Subject: Review the cops 3.03 1:30PM

Saturday, March 3 at 1:30 p.m.
Meet with CRA Board Representatives
Walker Church, 3100 16th Ave S, Minneapolis

The Civilian Review Authority (CRA) was created to investigate complaints
of police brutality in Minneapolis.  But is the CRA really doing its best
to make offending officers accountable?  Come to this meeting to ask
questions and share your concerns.

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

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: SOA/potluck 3.03 5pm

Saturday, 3/3, 5 pm potluck, 6 pm program, sendoff for Northland College
junior Melissa Helman as she heads off to prison for "crossing the line" at
the School of the Americas last November, featuring human rights activist
Mayra Gimez, former prisoner of conscience Brooks Anderson and musician
Rachael Kilgour, Peace United Church of Christ fellowship hall, 1111 N 11th
Ave, Duluth.  anathoth [at]

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

From: wamm <wamm [at]>
Subject: Moon walk/snow 3.03 7pm

Coldwater Full Moon Tour

Saturday, March 3, 7:00 p.m. (Gather) 7:15 p.m. (Walk) Minnehaha Park,
54th Street South, Minneapolis (South End of the Pay Parking Lot). The
March moon is called the storm moon, also sap, raccoon and crow moon. A
total lunar eclipse begins at 3:30 p.m. and ends at 7:12 p.m., but may not
be visible. Come play in the snow! According to the Farmer's Almanac the
area should be heavily blessed with snow. Wear waterproofs. Plus a
traditional group howl. Coldwater is a sacred spot for Native Americans
and earth preservation. FFI: Visit <>.

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

From: Carole Rydberg <carydberg [at]>
Subject: Eco/war/films 3.04 12:30pm

Northwest Neighbors for Peace is presenting two fine films free at the
Ridgedale Library, 12601 Ridgedale Dr., Minnetonka on Sunday March 4. "An
Inconvenient Truth" will begin at 12:30 PM; "The Ground Truth " at 2:30
PM.  Come for one or come for both.  Free and open to the public. More
information, Carole Rydberg, carydberg [at]

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

From: scot b <earthmannow [at]>
Subject: Vigil Stillwater 3.04 1pm

A weekly Vigil for Peace

Every Sunday, at the Stillwater bridge from 1- 2 p.m.  Come after Church
or after brunch ! All are invited to join in song and witness to the human
desire for peace in our world.

Signs need to be positive.  Sponsored by the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers.

If you have a United Nations flag or a United States flag please bring it.
Be sure to dress for the weather . For more information go to

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

From: Eduardo Cardenas <eduardocardenas [at]>
Subject: Immigration march 3.04 2pm

March and Rally for Immigration Reform

Sunday March 4th at 2:00 pm
Governer's Mansion (1006 Summit Ave.) St. Paul
Linwood Rec. Center (860 St. Clair Ave.)

The Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Coalition (MIRAC) is hosting a march
to call for an end to the deportations and raids that have taken place
over the past several months, and to demand that our elected officials
support comprehensive immigration reform that provides for legalization
for all immigrants.

The ICE raids of Dec. 12 in Worthington MN, tore apart dozens of families
and left literally hundreds of kids asking, Where have they taken my
dad/uncle/sister/etc. Without immediate immigration reform thousands of
families in our country will continue to be forced to live in the shadows,
perpetually tormented by the fear of losing a loved one at any moment.

Join families, workers, communities of faith, students, immigrants and
their allies to bring attention to the impacts that these raids have on
families and the larger community and demand Comprehensive Immigration
Reform, without loopholes and strings attached for special interest
groups, that meets the economic and social reality of the situation and
not the political prerogatives of politicians.

More info: or call (651) 389-9174.

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

From: David Strand <mncivil [at]>
Subject: AIDS musical 3.04 5pm

The 18th Annual Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS
Sunday, March 4 - Saturday, March 10, 2007
A National Program of the Balm In Gilead, Inc.
Community Fitness Today, Inc., the Macedonia Baptist Church DHM HIV/AIDS
Ministry and Kwanzaa Community Church in partnership with The Balm In

Presents the annual:
"If I Can Help Somebody"

kick off musical featuring:  Paris Bennett "Princess P"
Stellar Award winning: James Grear & Company
And other choirs, groups, soloist, praising dancing, including a special
candle lighting ceremony

Sunday, March 4, 2007, 5:00 p.m.
Kwanzaa Community Church
3700 Bryant Avenue North
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55411
A Community Fitness Today, Inc. annual event!

Free Will Offering!  All donations tax-deductible and benefit individuals
infected and affected by HIV/AIDS For more information or for questions
contact Marie at 612-824-8610 Email: communityfitness [at] For more
information about the National Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing
of AIDS go to:

S. Marie Graham, Executive Director Community Fitness Today, Inc.  310
East 38th Street, Suite 226 Minneapolis, MN 55409 Office 612-824-8610 Fax

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

The Tragedy of a Dozen Evil Men
Americans Have Lost Their Country
March 1, 2007

The Bush-Cheney regime is America's first neoconservative regime. In a few
short years, the regime has destroyed the Bill of Rights, the separation
of powers, the Geneva Conventions, and the remains of America's moral
reputation along with the infrastructures of two Muslim countries and
countless thousands of Islamic civilians. Plans have been prepared, and
forces moved into place, for an attack on a third Islamic country, Iran,
and perhaps Syria and Hezbollah in Lebanon as well.

This extraordinary aggressiveness toward the US Constitution,
international law, and the Islamic world is the work, not of a vast
movement, but of a handful of ideologues - principally Vice President Dick
Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Lewis Libby, Douglas Feith, Paul Wolfowitz,
Richard Perle, Elliott Abrams, Zalmay Khalilzad, John Bolton, Philip
Zelikow, and Attorney General Gonzales. These are the main operatives who
have controlled policy. They have been supported by their media shills at
the Weekly Standard, National Review, Fox News, New York Times, CNN, and
the Wall Street Journal editorial page and by "scholars" in assorted think
tanks such as the American Enterprise Institute.

The entirety of their success in miring the United States in what could
become permanent conflict in the Middle East is based on the power of
propaganda and the big lie.

Initially, the 9/11 attack was blamed on Osama bin Laden, but after an
American puppet was installed in Afghanistan, the blame for 9/11 was
shifted to Iraq's Saddam Hussein, who was said to have weapons of mass
destruction that would be used against America. The regime sent Secretary
of State Colin Powell to tell the lie to the UN that the Bush-Cheney
regime had conclusive proof of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.

Having conned the UN, Congress, and the American people, the regime
invaded Iraq under totally false pretenses and with totally false
expectations. The regime's occupation of Iraq has failed in a military
sense, but the neoconservatives are turning their failure into a strategic
advantage. At the beginning of this year President Bush began blaming Iran
for America's embarrassing defeat by a few thousand lightly armed
insurgents in Iraq.

Bush accuses Iran of arming the Iraqi insurgents, a charge that experts
regard as improbable. The Iraqi insurgents are Sunni. They inflict
casualties on our troops, but spend most of their energy killing Iraqi
Shi'ites, who are closely allied with Iran, which is Shi'ite. Bush's
accusation requires us to believe that Iran is arming the enemies of its

On the basis of this absurd accusation - a pure invention - Bush has
ordered a heavy concentration of aircraft carrier attack forces off Iran's
coast, and he has moved US attack planes to Turkish bases and other US
bases in countries contingent to Iran.

In testimony before Congress on February 1 of this year, former National
Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski said that he expected the regime to
orchestrate a "head-on conflict with Iran and with much of the world of
Islam at large." He said a plausible scenario was "a terrorist act blamed
on Iran, culminating in a 'defensive' US military action against Iran." He
said that the neoconservative propaganda machine was already articulating
a "mythical historical narrative" for widening their war against Islam.

Why is the US spending one trillion dollars on wars, the reasons for which
are patently false. What is going on?

There are several parts to the answer. Like their forebears among the
Jacobins of the French Revolution, the Bolsheviks of the communist
revolution, and the National Socialists of Hitler's revolution,
neoconservatives believe that they have a monopoly on virtue and the right
to impose hegemony on the rest of the world. Neoconservative conquests
began in the Middle East because oil and Israel, with which neocons are
closely allied, are both in the MIddle East.

The American oil giant, UNOCAL, had plans for an oil and gas pipeline
through Afghanistan, but the Taliban were not sufficiently cooperative.
The US invasion of Afghanistan was used to install Hamid Karzai, who had
been on UNOCAL's payroll, as puppet prime minister. US neoconservative
Zalmay Khalilzad, who also had been on UNOCAL's payroll, was installed as
US ambassador to Afghanistan.

Two years later Khalilzad was appointed US ambassador to Iraq. American
oil companies have been given control over the exploitation of Iraq's oil

The Israeli relationship is perhaps even more important. In 1996 Richard
Perle and the usual collection of neocons proposed that all of Israel's
enemies in the Middle East be overthrown. "Israel's enemies" consist of
the Muslim countries not in the hands of US puppets or allies. For decades
Israel has been stealing Palestine from the Palestinians such that today
there is not enough of Palestine left to comprise an independent country.
The US and Israeli governments blame Iran, Iraq, and Syria for aiding and
abetting Palestinian resistance to Israel's theft of Palestine.

The Bush-Cheney regime came to power with the plans drawn to attack the
remaining independent countries in the Middle East and with
neoconservatives in office to implement the plans. However, an excuse was
required. Neoconservatives had called for "a new Pearl Harbor," and 9/11
provided the propaganda event needed in order to stampede the public and
Congress into war. Neoconservative Philip Zelikow was put in charge of the
9/11 Commission Report to make certain no uncomfortable facts emerged.

The neoconservatives have had enormous help from the corporate media, from
Christian evangelicals, particularly from the "Rapture Evangelicals," from
flag-waving superpatriots, and from the military-industrial complex whose
profits have prospered. But the fact remains that the dozen men named in
the second paragraph above were able to overthrow the US Constitution and
launch military aggression under the guise of a preventive/preemptive "war
against terrorism."

When the American people caught on that the "war on terror" was a cloak
for wars of aggression, they put Democrats in control of Congress in order
to apply a brake to the regime's warmongering. However, the Democrats have
proven to be impotent to stop the neoconservative drive to wider war and,
perhaps, world conflagration.

We are witnessing the triumph of a dozen evil men over American democracy
and a free press.

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan
administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal
editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor
of The Tyranny of Good Intentions.He can be reached at:
PaulCraigRoberts [at]

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

Patrick Moore's Deadly Con Game
The Sham of Nuclear Power
February 28, 2007

Vermont, like too many other places with nuke reactors, was recently
disgraced by an industry-sponsored visit from Patrick Moore, who claims to
be a "founder" of Greenpeace, and who is out selling nuclear power as a
"green" technology.

The two claims are roughly equal in the baldness of their falsehood.

But the impacts of the lies about Vermont Yankee---like so many other
reactors---are far more serious. Vermont is now at a crossroads in its
energy and environmental future. The reactor is old and infirm. Every day
it operates heightens the odds on a major accident.

In a world beset by terror, there is no more vulnerable target than an
aged reactor like Vermont Yankee. Its core is laden with builtup radiation
accumulated over the decades. Its environs are stacked with supremely
radioactive spent fuel. Its elderly core and containment are among the
most fragile that exist.

Despite industry claims, VY's high-level nuke waste is going nowhere.
Nuclear Regulatory Commissioner Edward McGaffigan has told the New York
Times he believes the Yucca Mountain waste repository cannot open for at
least another 17-20 years, if ever. At current production levels, it will
by then require yet another repository at least that size to handle the
spent fuel that will by then be stacked at reactors like VY. In short: the
dry casks stacked at Vermont Yankee comprise what amounts to a permanent
high level nuke dump, on the shores of the Connecticut River.

The Better Business Bureau recently recommended that the Nuclear Energy
Institute pull its advertising that claims atomic reactors are clean and
nonpolluting. The NEI is an industry front group. The BBB says that
reactors cause thermal pollution in their outtake pipes and cooling
towers, and also create substantial amounts of greenhouse gases in uranium
production. In short, the Better Business Bureau has punctured the
industry's claim the Vermont Yankee and other reactors are any kind of
solution for climate chaos. The idea that VY is a "green" facility is
utter nonsense.

Indeed, all nuclear power plants produce huge quantities of global warming
gases as they are wrapped up in the mining of the uranium ore that goes
into the fuel, and in the milling of that ore into fuel rods. The American
West is littered with gargantuan piles of mill tailings that pour
thousands of curies of radioactive radon into the atmosphere.

Fabricating fuel rods is one of the most electricity-intensive industries
on earth, consuming millions of tons of coal in the process, emitting
untold quantities of greenhouse gases. The radioactive emissions from the
plants themselves also unbalance the atmosphere, and the heat they dump
into the air and water directly heats the planet.

The alleged "renaissance" of nuclear power is nothing more than heavily
funded industry hype. Wall Street financiers are not lining up to invest
in these dinosaurs, and numerous utility executives have publicly doubted
the wisdom of building them.

One reason is the explosive take-off of the renewable energy industry.
Wind power is now very substantially cheaper than nukes. The production of
photovoltaic cells, which convert sunlight directly to electricity, can
barely meet demand. Investments in biofuels such as ethanol and biodiesel
are soaring, as are those in the cheapest form of recovered energy,
increased efficiency. Shutting VY would open Vermont to the revolution
that is reshaping the future. Keeping it open locks Vermont into a sorry

Nuclear power is a 50-year experiment that has failed. Extending the
operations of Vermont Yankee will only leave the state with more
radioactive waste, a Connecticut River increasingly threatened by heat and
radioactive emissions, and an increasingly radioactive relic despoiling
the region. Nukes cannot compete in the market, and would all cease to
operate overnight if the huge subsidy of federal liability insurance was

It is fitting, therefore, that the industry has insulted Vermont by
sending in a spokesman of the caliber of Patrick Moore. Moore has claimed
for years to be a founder of Greenpeace, an exaggeration of his actual
role. Moore sailed on the first Greenpeace campaign, but he did not
actually found the organization. According to Dorothy Stowe, an American
Quaker, who immigrated to Canada in 1966 and founded Greenpeace with her
husband Irving Stowe and other Canadian pacifists and ecologists,
"Technically, Patrick Moore cannot be described as a founder of
Greenpeace. He was there in early stages with a lot of others. But what he
is doing now is unconscionable."

In "Greenpeace: How a Group of Ecologists, Journalists, and Visionaries
Changed the World," author Rex Weyler writes "Greenpeace was founded by
Quakers Dorothy and Irving Stowe, Marie and Jim Bohlen, and journalists
Ben Metcalfe, Dorothy Metcalfe, and Bob Hunter. This group organized the
first campaign to sail a boat into the U.S. nuclear test zone on Amchitka
Island in the Bering Sea.

"Canadian ecologist and carpenter Bill Darnell coined the name
"Greenpeace" in February 1970. A year later, Moore wrote to the
organization, applying for a crew position on the boat and was accepted."

Moore wrote his letter on March 16, 1971, two years after the group was
founded, describing himself as a graduate student "in the field of
resource ecology." Clearly, then, Moore was not a founder of Greenpeace.
Founders don't write letters applying to join. After the Stowes, Metcalfes
and Bob Hunter left the organization, Moore briefly served as president,
from 1977 to 1979. Former members recall that his bullyism nearly scuttled
Greenpeace. He launched an internal lawsuit against his rivals in other
Greenpeace offices, was replaced as president in 1979, and eventually
drummed out of the organization as a troublemaker.

According to Steve Sawyer, who still works with Greenpeace in Amsterdam,
"Moore harbored hopes of regaining his throne. Those hopes were dashed
when he was chucked off the board in 1985." Moore started a fish farm, but
did not succeed. He then did public relations for the Canadian forestry
industry, absurdly defending massive clearcuts as an ecologically viable
logging practice.

In a newspaper column in 1993, authentic Greenpeace founder Bob Hunter,
called Moore "The Judas of the ecology movement." According to Hunter,
Moore "burned off his old buddies because of his hubris. He was always a
Green Tory at heart."

Moore says he is the "head scientist" of his public relations firm, but
has never published a peer-reviewed scientific study. Moore exaggerates
his role in Greenpeace and his credentials as a scientist to serve as a
public relations hack for hire.

Moore now gets big money defending the indefensible, posing as a reformed
environmentalist who has seen the light ... any light he is paid to see.
He has hyped genetically modified crops, PVCs, and brominated flame
retardants. He has soft-pedaled dioxins and toxic mine tailings dumped by
Newmont mines into Indonesia bays.

Now he wants to sell Vermont on its nuke power plant. In exchange for a
paycheck, he portrays Three Mile Island as a "success story." But if a
melt-down turned Vermont Yankee into a TMI-type, billion-dollar liability,
would he pitch in his pitch man's paychecks to help you underwrite this

Years ago, when he worked for Greenpeace, Moore wrote: "Nuclear power
plants are, next to nuclear warheads themselves, the most dangerous
devices that man has ever created. Their construction and proliferation is
the most irresponsible, in fact the most criminal, act ever to have taken
place on this planet."

Greenpeace agrees. The "revival" of nuke power is a hype being perpetrated
by phony experts. Wall Street is not exactly lining up to invest in a
failed technology with fifty years of proven failure. Vermont Yankee must
be shut, dismantled and buried. Closing it now will narrow the burden of
its permanent waste dump and open the door on the booming revolution in
the real energy of the future: renewables and efficiency.

Harvey Wasserman, senior advisor to Greenpeace USA since 1990, is author
of "Solartopia: Our Green-Powered Earth, A.D. 2030,"

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

These Orchestrated Attacks on Chavez are a Travesty
by George Galloway
on Wednesday, February 28, 2007 by the Guardian / UK

The chilling Oliver Stone film Salvador got a rare airing on television
this week. It was a reminder of a time when, for those on the left, little
victories were increasingly dwarfed by big defeats - not least in a Latin
America which became synonymous with death squads and juntas. How
different things seem now. Yesterday US Vice-President Dick Cheney came
uncomfortably close to the reality of Afghan resistance to foreign
occupation. On the same day Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez delivered a
mightier blow to the neocon dream of US domination, announcing an
extension of public ownership of his country's oil fields - the richest
outside the Middle East.

Much more is at stake than London mayor Ken Livingstone's welcome oil deal
with Chavez, which will see London bus fares halved while Venezuela gets
expertise from city hall and a bridgehead in the capital of the US's
viceroy in Europe. Washington's biggest oil supplier is now firmly in the
grip of a social revolution. This month I watched with Chavez as thousands
of soldiers, French and British tanks, Russian helicopters and brand new
Mirage and Sukhoi fighter bombers passed by: the soldiers chanting
"patria, socialismo o muerte" - enough to make any US president blanch.
Chavez answered the salute with the words: "the Bolivarian revolution is a
peaceful revolution but it is not unarmed".

The music played throughout the event was the hymn of Salvador Allende's
1970s Chilean government, declaring that the people united will never be
defeated. But Chavez's socialism is a good deal more red than Allende's -
and its enemies seem no less determined than those who bathed Chile in
blood in 1973. Despite complete control of Venezuela's national assembly -
the opposition boycotted the last elections after being defeated in seven
electoral tests in a row - Chavez has been given enabling powers for 18
months to ensure he can pilot his reforms through entrenched opposition
from the civil service, big business, the previously all-powerful
oligarchy, their vast media interests and their friends in Washington.
Among those friends we must include our own prime minister, who only last
year declared Venezuela to be in breach of international democratic norms
- though when I pressed him in parliament he was unable to list them.

The atmosphere in Caracas is fervid. The vast shanty towns draping the
hillside around the cosmopolitan centre bustle with workers' cooperatives,
trade union meetings, marches and debates. The $18bn fund for social
welfare set up by Chavez is already bearing fruit. Education, food
distribution and primary healthcare programmes now cover the majority for
the first time. Queues form outside medical centres filled with thousands
of Cuban doctors dispensing care to a population whose health was of no
value to those who sat atop Venezuela's immense wealth in the past.

Chavez, who regularly pops over to Havana to check on the health of Fidel
Castro, is at the centre of a new Latin America which is determined to be
nobody's backyard. Reliable US allies are now limited to death squad
ridden Colombia, Peru and Mexico - and latterly then only by recourse to
rigged elections. But Chavez's international ambitions are not confined to
the Americas. He became a hero in the Arab world after withdrawing his
ambassador from Tel Aviv in protest at the bombardment of Lebanon by
US-armed Israeli forces last summer, and has pledged privately to halt oil
exports to the US in the event of aggression against Iran. This all
represents a challenge to US power which, if Bush was not sunk in the
morass of Iraq, would be at the top of his action list.

Not that his supporters are marking time. The mendacious propaganda that
Chavez is a dictator and human rights abuser is being spread with
increasing urgency by the Atlanticist right and their fellow travellers,
such as leftie-turned-neocon Nick Cohen who told his London newspaper
audience last week that Livingstone's relationship with Chavez was making
him think of voting Tory. Chavez's decision not to renew an expired
licence for an opposition television station involved in a coup attempt -
there are plenty of others - is being portrayed as the beginning of the
death of democracy. It's as if Country Life's diatribes against the fox
hunting ban were taken as irrefutable proof of totalitarianism in Britain.

The so-called "dictator" Chavez is nothing of the kind. He has won
election after election, validating his radical course. Still the fear of
a coup - such as in 2002 when Chavez was removed and imprisoned for three
days before millions descended to the presidential palace to reinstate him
- is everywhere. One Englishman abroad who welcomed the 2002 coup as the
"overthrow of a demagogue" was the foreign office minister Denis MacShane
- a humiliating correction had to be issued following Chavez's
restoration. That tale underscores the importance of the links being
forged between revolutionary Caracas and anti-war London. Chavez is well
aware that the people were defeated in Chile, the fascists allowed to pass
in Republican Spain. Just as in Venezuela, the defence against
counter-revolution lies with the poor and the working people who are
shaping the world they want; so too must all those internationally who
want to see this ferment reach its potential rally to Venezuela's side.

George Galloway is the Respect MP for Bethnal Green and Bow and presents a
radio show three times a week on TalkSport
Guardian News and Media Limited 2007

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

The Dead Hand of Greenspan
Market Meltdown
March 1, 2007

Tuesday's stock market freefall has Greenspan's bloody fingerprints all
over it. And, no, I'm not talking about Sir Alan's crystal ball
predictions about the impending recession; that's just more of his same
circuitous blather. The real issue is the Fed's lunatic policies of low
interest rates and currency deregulation which have paved the way for
economic Armageddon. Whether the Chinese stock market contagion persists
or not is immaterial; the American economy is headed for the dumpster and
it's all because of the wizened former fed-chief, Alan "Great Depression"

So, what does the stumbling Chinese stock market have to do with

Greenspan was the driving force behind deregulation which keeps the
greenback floating freely while the Chinese and Japanese manipulate their
currencies. This gives their industries a competitive advantage by
allowing them to consistently underbid their foreign rivals. Big business
loves this idea, because it offers cheaper sources of labor and allows
them to maximize their profits. It's been a disaster for Americans though,
who've seen their good paying jobs increasingly outsourced while US
manufacturing plants are dismantled and air-mailed to the Far East.

Greenspan has been the biggest champion of deregulation; it's another way
he pays tribute to the Golden Calf of "free trade", the god of personal

Yesterday, the Chinese got whacked with their own stick. By keeping the
value of their currency down, they spawned a wave of speculation which
inflated their stock market by 140% in one year. When the government
threatened to tighten up interest rates the stock market went into a
nosedive and the overall index got a 9% haircut in a matter of hours. If
they had been playing by the "free market" rules, rather than pegging
their currency to artificially cheap greenbacks they could have avoided
inflating their stock market.

As it happens, the rumblings in the Chinese market sent tremors through
the global system and triggered a 416 point loss on Wall Street; the
biggest one day slide since 9-11. Now the world is watching nervously to
see if the markets can recuperate or if this is just the beginning of
America's great economic unwinding.

Wednesday's revised numbers of GDP are not encouraging. The Commerce Dept
revised their original data from a robust 3.5% GDP to a paltry 2.2. The
economy is shrinking faster than anyone had anticipated. Also, durable
goods plummeted beyond expectations and the real estate market continues
to swoon. Troubles in the sub-prime market are spreading to non
traditional loans as more and more over-leveraged homeowners are unable to
make their monthly mortgage payments. (By the end of December 24 sub-prime
mortgage lenders had already gone belly-up) Greenspan's empire of debt is
bound to come under greater and greater pressure as volatility increases.

On Monday, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported a 3% jump
in the sales of existing homes, but it was all hogwash. The housing
industry has joined the media in trying to conceal what's really going on
by showering the public with cheery talk of a recovery. Don't believe it.
Go to their website and you'll see that "year over year" January sales
were down by a whopping 290,000 homes. Add that tidbit to "new home sales"
(announced today) which "fell by 16.6%, the most since 1994" (Bloomberg)
and you get bird's-eye-view of an industry teetering on the brink of

Greenspan pumped the housing bubble so full of helium; we'll be feeling
the back-draft for a decade or more. Still, the gnomish ex Fed-master had
the audacity to stand in front of the cameras and say, "We have not had
any major, significant spillover effects on the American economy from the
contraction in housing."


Apparently, Greenspan hasn't taken note of the skyrocketing rate of
foreclosures or the growing number of people on public assistance. It's
doubtful that one notices the struggles of the working stiff from their
manicured sanctuary in the Aspen foothills.

It's not just the housing market that's buckling from the expansion of
debt, but the stock market as well. The Associated Press reported last
week that, "Investors are borrowing at a record pace to sink into the
stock market, and the trend is raising concerns on Wall Street about what
might happen if a major correction occurs.The amount of margin debt, which
is how brokers define this kind of borrowing, hit a record $285.6 billion
in January on the New York Stock Exchange. Such a robust appetite, amid a
backdrop of complacent market conditions, could leave investors badly
exposed if major indexes are snagged by a market decline. Some could find
themselves forced to sell stock or other assets to meet what's known as a
margin call, when a broker effectively calls in the loan".

That last time margin debt was this high was at the height of the
bubble in March 2000. We all know how that turned out; the bubble burst
taking with it $7 trillion in savings and retirement from working class

It all could have been avoided if there were prudent and enforceable
regulations on margin debt. Of course, that would have been a violation of
the central tenet of free market exploitation: "There shall be no law
inhibiting the unscrupulous ripping-off of the American people".

Margin debt is a red flag that the market is over-inflated by speculation.
When the market hits a speed-bump like yesterday the fall is steeper than
normal, because panicky, over-leveraged investors start scampering for the
exits. This probably explains much of what happened on Wall Street after
the sudden decline in the Chinese market.

The problems facing the stock market will soon play out whether or not we
recover from this "dress rehearsal"for disaster. America's huge account
imbalances and the massive expansion of personal (mortgage) debt ensure
that there's more trouble ahead.

The real problem is deep, systemic and difficult to understand. It relates
to basic monetary policy which has been tragically mishandled by the
Federal Reserve. A healthy economy requires that money supply not exceed
the growth of real GDP; otherwise inflation will ensue. The Fed has been
cranking up the money supply at a rate of over 11% for the last 6 years
ensuring that we will eventually face a cycle of agonizing

More worrisome is the fact that the world is about to face a global
liquidity crisis for which there is no easy solution. See, the Fed loans
money to the banks by buying government debt. Then, the banks, through the
magic of "fractional banking", are then able to multiply the amount of
money they loan out to their customers. In other words, the loans exceed
the amount of the reserves by a considerable margin.

Grasping the magnitude of this phenomenon is the only way to appreciate
the storm that lies ahead. This excerpt may shed some light on the issue:

"In the 1970s the reserve requirements on deposits started to fall with
the emergence of money market funds, which require no reserves. Then in
the early 1990s, reserve requirements were dropped to zero on savings
deposits, CDs, and Eurocurrency deposits. At present, reserve requirements
apply only to "transactions deposits" - essentially checking accounts. THE

Consumer loans are made using savings deposits which are not subject to
reserve requirements. These loans can be bunched into securities and sold
to somebody else, taking them off of the bank's books.


That's why we should not be surprised when we discover that, although
there are currently $3.5 trillion in bank deposits in the USA, the actual
reserves are about $40 billion.

This system works fairly well unless there's a major market meltdown or a
run on the banks, in which case people will quickly find that there are,
in fact, no reserves. Even this would not be a concern if the Fed had not
increased the money supply by leaps and bounds while, at the same time,
fueling the housing bubble through obscenely low interest rates. Now,
millions of homeowners will be facing default on their loans, the banks
will be stretched to the max, and the stock market will begin to falter.

Something's gotta give.

Last week, in Davos, Switzerland, German banker, Max Weber, warned the G-8
Summit, "If you misprice risk, don't come looking to us for liquidity
assistance. The longer this goes on and the more risky positions are built
up over time, the more luck you need. It is time for financial market to
move back to more adequate risk pricing and maybe forego a deal even if it
looks tempting. Global liquidity will dry up and when that point comes
some of this underpricing of risk will normalize. If there is much less
liquidity around, people will not go into such high risk."

It is unlikely that Weber's advice will be heeded. The United States has
grown addicted to "cheap money" and ever-expanding debt. The Federal
Reserve will keep greasing the printing presses and diddling the interest
rates until someone takes away the punch bowl and the party comes to an

There've been plenty of warnings, but they've all been brushed aside with
equal disdain. In a recent article on, ("Lame Duck")
Alexander Cockburn refers to a report published by the Financial Services
Authority (FSA) "a body set up under the purview of the British Treasury
to monitor financial markets and protect the public interest by raising
the alarm about shady practices and any dangerous slides towards

The report "Private Equity: A Discussion of Risk and Regulatory
Engagement" states clearly:

"Excessive leverage: The amount of credit that lenders are willing to
extend on private equity transactions has risen substantially. This
lending may not, in some circumstances, be entirely prudent. Given current
levels and recent developments in the economic/credit cycle, the default
of a large private equity backed company or a cluster of smaller private
equity backed companies seems inevitable. This has negative implications
for lenders, purchasers of the debt, orderly markets and conceivably, in
extreme circumstances, financial stability and elements of the UK

The problem is even worse in the US where personal and mortgage debt has
increased by over $7 trillion in the last 6 years! This is not an issue
that can be resolved by a meager 10% correction in the stock market. The
reaction on Wall Street to the sudden downturn in China demonstrates the
fragility of the market and presages greater volatility and retrenchment.

We should expect to see bigger and more destructive market-fluctuations as
investors get increasingly skittish over bad economic news and weakness in
the dollar. Yesterday's 400 point somersault is just the first sign that
Greenspan's Goldilocks' economy is going kaput.

Mike Whitney lives in Washington state. He can be reached at:
fergiewhitney [at]


  - David Shove             shove001 [at]
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