|Progressive Calendar 09.11.08||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2008 10:49:10 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 09.11.08 POLICE RAIDS XII 1 McKinney (opednews poll) 2 ACLU 3 ACLU 4 ACLU 5 Angell (PC) 6 Schmelzer (MN Independent) 7 Moriarty (petition) 8 Engelsen (Bedlam events) 9 Dooley 10 Hilber 11 Parry (Consortiumnews) 12 ==events== 13 Fitrakis/Wasserman - 10 ways the McCain/Palin GOP steals the Ohio Vote --1-- September 8, 2008 OpEdNews Poll"Media-News: Should Outraged Americans Boycott Minneapolis and St Paul until They Drop Charges By Mac McKinney http://www.opednews.com Should Outraged Americans Boycott Minneapolis and St Paul until They Drop Charges This is a critical moment in American history. If the officials who mounted an illegal, brutal assault on and repression of journalists, legal observers and innocent civilians during the Republican National Convention get away with this, then a terrible paradigm will have created to continue this Fascistic-style repression throughout the country in the future, the "Iraqization of the American Media", where unless you are embedded and under their thumb, you are an enemy of the State. Elected officials in Minneapolis and St Paul, as well as their police departments and sheriff's departments, must be held accountable. Consequently, I propose that Americans boycott the Twin Cities until they clean up their act, denounce what happened to the innocent, and punish those responsible for these outrages. The RNC, which purportedly has taken out an insurance policy to reimburse the Twin Cities police for $10,000,000 worth of lawsuits against them, should also be investigated for collusion and conspiracy to abuse and strip away the Constitutional Rights of the American people during the RNC. Yes 96% from 65 votes No 4% from 3 votes --2-- ACLU To Represent Reporter And Others Arrested At RNC For Immediate Release September 3, 2008 Group Continues To Defend Constitutional Rights, While Denouncing Protesters Who Employed Criminal Acts SAINT PAUL - The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota has coordinated legal counsel for Amy Goodman, host of the popular television and radio program DemocracyNow!, and two of that show's producers who were detained during mass arrests surrounding the Republican National Convention (RNC). Goodman was released on misdemeanor charges three hours after her arrest, while the producers, Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar, were held longer and charged with felony intent to riot. Those charges were suspended pending investigation. The ACLU of MN is calling for all charges against Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar to be dropped. "Arresting journalists to keep them from doing their jobs is a blatant violation of their constitutional rights and the right of the American public to be kept informed," said Chuck Samuelson, Executive Director of the ACLU of Minnesota. "The arrest of several journalists during the Republican National Convention is a disturbing practice and a violation of their First Amendment right to gather the news". The ACLU is also taking on clients from the group of nearly 300 who were arrested on the first day of the RNC. John Lundquist, an ACLU volunteer attorney with Fredrikson and Byron P.A., is counsel for Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar. The national ACLU is calling for an investigation into the raids and mass arrests that have occurred during the RNC. --3-- Photojournalists from Kentucky released from jail without charges after an unjustified 36 hour detainment For Immediate Release Saint Paul, Minn- Two photo journalism students were released September 3rd after being held without charge for 36 hours following their arrest during the Republican National Convention. The advisor was also arrested, but released earlier without charges. Two students, Britney McIntosh and Edward Matthews, and their advisor, James Winn, of the University of Kentucky newspaper the Kentucky Kernel were arrested on Labor Day while photographing demonstrations and law enforcement response outside the RNC. The Kernel has a circulation of 30,000, one of the largest rates of student newspapers in the country, and the students and their advisor had journalist credentials and registration when they were arrested. Despite their peaceful, lawful behavior the photo journalists were swept up and arrested with no concern by the police officers as to whether they committed any crimes. "The arrest of a journalist while documenting political activity violates our country's freedom of the press," stated Charles Samuelson, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota. "There are no justifications to arrest any journalists peaceably assembled at demonstrations." The three Kentucky Kernel journalists are only a few of the many journalists taken into prolonged custody during the sweeping arrests by law enforcement this week. The ACLU of Minnesota has identified other journalists, bloggers and photographers from Rhode Island, California, Florida, Illinois and other parts of the country who have also been arrested. The photojournalist from Illinois was arrested with the Kernel photo journalists; he however was not released, and is being charged with a Gross Misdemeanor Riot. "The freedom of all journalists, whether they report as freelancers or work for the NY Times should be respected and protected," stated Samuelson. McIntosh, Matthews and Winn were released just prior to the end of the 36 hour hold period allowed by law. Though their physical freedom has been restored, McIntosh and Matthews have so far been denied the opportunity to continue reporting as their camera equipment has not been returned to them. Even though they have been released, they were informed they could still be charged with a crime at a later time. The ACLU-MN is reviewing their legal options regarding their arrests. The students and their advisor were represented by Matthew Lute of the Matthew Lute Law Office. --4-- Federal Judge denies release of 1st Amendment Protected Materials For Immediate Release September 4, 2008 Federal Judge John Tunheim denied the ACLU-MN request to release the literature and educational materials that were illegally seized by police during mass raids on private homes and a gather place the weekend before the RNC. The raids were part of what appears to be a massive government crackdown on free speech during the Republican National Convention. "Pamphlets and buttons are constitutionally-protected forms of free speech and the police have no business going around confiscating them from innocent people," said Chuck Samuelson, Executive Director of the ACLU of Minnesota. "It is greatly disturbing if and when the materials are released, it will be too late for their owners to distribute them at the convention." The ACLU filed the lawsuit on behalf of six individuals who own the confiscated material, which includes First Amendment-protected literature, buttons, pamphlets, leaflets and books. None of those individuals have been arrested or charged with any crime. The complaint charges that the materials were seized in an effort to "chill First Amendment rights to distribute literature, to disseminate ideas, to peaceably assemble, and to redress grievances - all protected under the First and Fourteenth Amendments" of the Constitution. "Seizing boxes and boxes of literature is another example of the wide-reaching government assault on free speech throughout the convention," said Samuelson. "This kind of law enforcement abuse of power has no place in a democracy." The complaint was filed against the cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota's Ramsey County, Ramsey County Sheriff Robert Fletcher, three deputies of the Ramsey County Sheriff's Department, and unnamed St. Paul and Minneapolis police officers. Attorneys on the case are Terri Nelson, legal counsel with the ACLU of MN; ACLU volunteer lawyers Al Goins and Rick Petry; and Geneva Finn of the National Lawyers Guild. --5-- Date: Wed, 10 Sep 2008 14:57:58 -0700 (PDT) From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net> To: "David Shove (Progressive Calendar)" <shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu> Subject: last RNC comment maybe monthly, when we make a donation to Xcel's bottom line, we can remind ourselves of the corporate involvement in St. Paul's hosting of the RNC. legal and completely pathological "persons", corporations can never value human rights or civil liberties. no simple solutions, --6-- KSTP's "rare" endorsement of RNC cops came from top GOP donor, station owner By Paul Schmelzer, Minnesota Independent September 10, 2008 While KSTP-TV started out its editorial September 7 with a disclaimer, it didn't end up with one. "It is rare when KSTP decides to take an editorial position," began anchor Jessica Miles, but that's exactly what the station did today in praising law enforcement for its job in policing the Republican National Convention and related protests. Undisclosed is that the opinion, attributed to the station's owner, comes from one Stanley Hubbard, the state's biggest Republican donor and a personal contributor to the Republican convention. According to Miles, KSTP staffers who witnessed police working the RNC said they were "calm and professional and measured when faced with protesters"; she added that that they were "well trained and prepared to do a tough job". The editorial concludes: So it is the opinion of the owners of KSTP that we owe a debt of gratitude to all the police officers on duty during the Republican National Convention. Congratulations and thank you to the men and women in uniform. Like anchor Cyndy Brucato, past communications director for Republicans Gov. Arne Carlson and Sen. Norm Coleman, Hubbard has deep ties to the GOP. How deep? With his wife Karen, he has donated $163,500 to candidates and causes this election cycle alone - more than any other Minnesotan - with the vast majority of it, $130,200, going to Republicans. Plus he kicked in "fundraising talents" and "an undisclosed amount of money" for the Republican National Convention, according to the Pioneer Press. On top of that, he lent the use of his 125-foot yacht during the RNC. "I hope they make good use of it," he told the paper, which added that it came with ground rules: "No smoking and no unfriendly shoes". The "good use" was apparently an invitation-only soiree dubbed the "Coleman for Senate Donor Appreciation Cruise". It's unclear if KSTP journalists were detained or arrested at the RNC, but prior to the festivities, police reportedly shoved a KSTP photographer who was trying to shoot a sit-in by protesters who'd planned a conention march. Update: David Brauer at MinnPost covers this too, reporting that no KSTP journalists were detained by police during the RNC and that Hubbard Broadcasting, Inc., was a sponsor of the RNC Host Committee. --7-- Date: Wed, 10 Sep 2008 21:02:27 -0500 From: Sheila Moriarty <sheila [at] pro-ns.net> Subject: help us circulate this petition Dear Friend: My neighbors, Tess Galati, Sandy Brophy and I are petitioning the mayor and city council representatives in Saint Paul to hold a community meeting to review law enforcement's encounters with the public during the Republican National Convention. At this forum, we would like the mayor to invite interested citizens to describe their experiences and learn hat went right, what went wrong and what we learned. We are seeking your support for the petition. We are endorsing a similar recommendation made by Dave Thune, Council representative of Ward Two. We wholeheartedly support his recommendation to have a community conversation and urge the mayor and other council members to act on it. We believe that an open meeting may help restore our own confidence in our law enforcement officers, particularly in the ability of officers to maintain public order in ways that respect our civil liberties and our rights to free speech and assembly We are aware that the Mayor's office received petitions with over 50,000 signatures from news organizations from around the country alleging that independent journalists were denied access to news events, were unfairly arrested and, in some cases, jailed. We believe a public forum will give civic leaders a chance to review these charges, to hear from journalists and to respond. We realize that Twin Cities' mayors, businesses and civic leaders spent much time, energy, and money to prepare for the Republican National Convention. They report that they think it was a financial success (Star Tribune, Sept. 6). We hesitate to congratulate them for their efforts for two reasons: (1) Images of police in riot gear beating up protestors and ordinary citizens are already circulating in the national media. (2) Amnesty International has reported that force was used disproportionately by police and in violation of the United Nations Standard on the use of force by law enforcement. They are asking for an investigation. http://www.amnestyusa.org/document.php?id=ENGUSA20080905001&lang=e If you support the following statement, please sign the petition, add your address and the date and send it directly to Mayor Chris Coleman, Room 390, 15 West Kellogg Boulevard, Saint Paul, MN 55101. Or you may mail it to me, Sheila Moriarty, electronically at Sheila [at] pro-ns.net. Be sure to press the reply button if you want to be able to type your name. Thank you. A PETITION TO THE MAYOR OF SAINT PAUL AND TO CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS We, the citizens of St. Paul, request that a public forum be held specifically to give citizens an opportunity to relate their experiences in interacting with law enforcement during the Republican National Convention. A goal of this meeting will be to clarify issues of concern and restore public trust among citizens, our law enforcement officers and elected officials Signed_____________________________ Address_________________________ Date ________________ --8-- Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2008 01:40:34 -0500 From: Karen Engelsen <siribear [at] earthlink.net> Subject: Because We Still Live Here! Because We Still Live Here! @ Bedlam Theatre Sep 18, 2008 - Sep 20, 2008 Creative Reflections on RNC week, Tactics for Social Change and Visions for a Transformed Twin Cities Bedlam Theatre hosts an evening of creative reflections (stories, songs, slides, videos, theatrical reenactments) on personal experiences during RNC week followed by a facilitated creative dialogue focused on carrying the momentum forward. Because we need to tell our stories and hear those of others. Because we're interested in the impact of mass actions, the various tactics employed, and most importantly how the momentum generated by such a huge event can be carried forth as a movement. Because we want to help strengthen connections in the radical community in the Twin Cities. Because we still live here! Event Dates Thu, Sep 18, 2008 - 7:30pm $10 suggested donation Fri, Sep 19, 2008 - 7:30pm $10 suggested donation Sat, Sep 20, 2008 - 7:30pm $10 suggested donation Bedlam Theatre is next to the Cedar-Riverside light rail station on the west bank of Minneapolis. --9-- Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2008 08:07:21 -0500 From: Ted Dooley <614grand [at] winternet.com> Subject: from the home front: Turn out! Turn out! They've gone! Good friends, The Republicans have left town but not all things are back to where they were. The city has quieted. The military occupation has ended, at least its most visible manifestations have. The damage to our sense of liberty is grievously wounded. These wounds on the body politic will fade but they will not heal. If we repeat the past, the scars will be forgotten or dis-remembered. Or cosmetically covered. But our freedoms will remain seriously curtailed. And all this with the complicity, active or passive, of our elected representatives, our embedded fourth estate and our frightened citizenry. For the religious, the anti-christ has shown its face. And we dare not behold it. It is not a foreign visage but a mirror in which we see ourselves gazing at ourselves while pretending to look over the horizon. It is the soulless, faceless, jackbooted, Tower of Babel we call the state, this government. Our idolatrous worship of property has made property more valuable than a child's tears, a child's blood. Corporate-capitalism, the ravenous tool we loosed on the earth, has turned to devour us. In our outrageous hubris we have loved our creation more than we love our children, more than we love each other. And now we fear this beast. We've come to depend on it. And we are willing to feed our young and their future into it. I was honored and humbled over the past two weeks to walk among heroes: independent journalists and documentarians, staring into the tear gas and batons of this militarized police state; scores of legal observers placing themselves at every confrontation, recording, noting, testifying; the gathering of dozens and dozens of people's lawyers and their allies, confronting, challenging, defending against this invasion; hundreds of people, mostly young, working tirelessly, organizing to push back the beast; and above all thousands and thousands and thousands of people, mostly uncelebrated, mostly unrecognized and unrecognizable, drawn together, assembled from all over this land, from all demographics (once a term of art now perverted to some hideous and divisive political tool), these thousands gathered to say, "No, God damn it, no!" I saw frustration and love and some anger, even desperation. But the only violence I saw sprang from the arrogance of state power. The Coast Guard patrolled our Mississippi. The military occupied our town. Law enforcement personnel from as far away as Tucson patrolled our streets. The FBI put its nose into our lives. The politicians invited it all and now must praise it all. There will be much breast-beating and professed shock. And inquiries, of course. Maybe even a commission or two. But the truth was on the streets. View it and consider it well. Ted Dooley [NLG] --10-- Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2008 10:25:24 -0400 From: Tom Hilber banjotomh [at] aol.com Subject: [SPIF] Mayor's Review www.icdc.com/~paulwolf/cointelpro/cointel.htm Special National Security Event In St. Paul Controlling the (possible) abuse of power in collecting domestic intelligence before, during and after National Convention in St. Paul MN. September 2008: * Domestic Intelligence Activity Has Threatened and Undermined The Constitutional Rights of Americans to Free Speech, Association and Privacy. It Has Done So Primarily Because The Constitutional System for Checking Abuse of Power Has Not Been Applied. The three main departures in the intelligence field from the constitutional plan for controlling abuse of power have been: (a) Excessive Executive Power. -- In a sense the growth of domestic intelligence activities mirrored the growth of presidential power generally. But more than any other activity, more even than exercise of the war power, intelligence activities have been left to the control of the Executive. For decades Congress and the courts as well as the press and the public have accepted the notion that the control of intelligence activities was the exclusive prerogative of the Chief Executive and his surrogates. The exercise of this power was not questioned or even inquired into by outsiders. Indeed, at times the power was seen as flowing not from the law, but as inherent, in the Presidency. Whatever the theory, the fact was that intelligence activities were essentially exempted from the normal system of checks and balances. Such Executive power, not founded in law or checked by Congress or the courts, contained the seeds of abuse and its growth was to be expected. (b) Excessive Secrecy. - Abuse thrives on secrecy. Obviously, public disclosure, of matters such as the names of intelligence agents or the technological details of collection methods is inappropriate. But in the field of intelligence, secrecy has been extended to inhibit review of the basic programs and practices them Those within the Executive branch and the Congress who would exercise their responsibilities wisely must be fully informed. The American public, as well, should know enough about intelligence activities to be able to apply its good sense to the underlying issues of policy and morality. Knowledge is the key to control. Secrecy should no longer be allowed to shield the existence of constitutional, legal and moral problems from the scrutiny of all three branches of government or from the American people themselves. (c) Avoidance of the Rule of Law. - Lawlessness by Government breeds corrosive cynicism among the people and erodes the trust upon which government depends. Here, there is no sovereign who stands above the law. Each of us, from presidents to the most disadvantaged citizen, must obey the law. As intelligence operations developed, however, rationalizations were fashioned to immunize them from the restraints of the Bill of Rights and the specific prohibitions of the criminal code. The experience of our investigation leads us to conclude that such rationalizations are a dangerous delusion. *Above Quotes is From The US Congress Church Committee on domestic Intel: St. Paul's Public sector conclusion could to be (to this presenter) this: that barely enough /minimal (sic) felony, criminal, conspiracy, action occurred to (indeed fulfill the mandate of the intelligence missions / statutes) that justify the preemptive activity before and then during now after SPECIAL NATIONAL SECURITY EVENT, to apply the above three directives to the to the post investigative period is essential. The amount of data the public or public servants has and has not received is in danger of being destroyed in the next few days, which any procrastination on the part of elected officials (sworn to uphold the State & Federal Constitutions) is malfeasance in their upholding the constitutional guarantees of the peoples right to be informed and further that checks and balances occur, and further investigative /oversight action occur. That this review will indeed not happen, that data will be destroyed, that the public will be deprived of information is from past experience of previous and similar said events inevitable. Therein elected State, county, and city officials ought be held accountable, after the executive branch (presidential orders) which was in charge for enacting SPECIAL NATIONAL SECURITY EVENT known as a national convention which was held in Saint Paul MN September 2008. Note: Issues of the 10th ammendment to the US Constitution re: de facto Marshall Law addressed in previous transmissions.... Tom Hilber East Side, St. Paul Info about Tom Hilber: http://forums.e-democracy.org/p/banjotomh --11-- Mocking Constitutional Rights by Nat Parry Published on Wednesday, September 10, 2008 by Consortiumnews.com common dreams On the third day of the Republican National Convention, GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin mocked Barack Obama for believing that individuals accused of terrorism actually have rights under the law. "Al-Qaeda terrorists still plot to inflict catastrophic harm on America," Palin said, "and he's worried that someone won't read them their rights." The implication was that those suspected of being terrorists have no rights under domestic or international law. The line elicited thunderous approval from the party faithful gathered in St. Paul, Minnesota. As the GOP delegates cheered, civil libertarians were reminded of the contempt that the Bush administration has shown to basic legal principles in its prosecution of the "war on terror," and the resounding approval these policies have gotten from the Republican Party as a whole. Perhaps viewers at home even nodded in agreement when thinking of the "catastrophic harm" that some individuals would like to inflict on America, and how important it is to keep America safe at all costs. But just outside the convention hall, police offered a stark reminder of how important those rights are, especially considering how broadly the term "terrorism" can be applied to just about anyone who speaks out against government policies. Over several days of the convention, primarily peaceful Americans protesting the war in Iraq and the broader Republican agenda were targeted by aggressive police decked out in full riot gear and armed with Tasers, pepper spray, rubber bullets and tear gas. An activist convergence center was raided, as were the homes of several protest organizers, and demonstrators were attacked, manhandled and arrested. [See Consortiumnews.com's "Storm Troopers at the RNC."] In the jails, protesters were mistreated and even tortured, some claim. A 19-year-old protester named Elliot Hughes alleged at a press conference that he had been beaten unconscious by police, who then banged his head against the floor to wake him up. They then moved him to a separate cell where they put a hood over his head with a gag and used pain-compliance holds on him for about an hour and a half. His injuries were severe enough that he checked himself into a hospital after being released from jail. Journalists Arrested Several independent journalists were also arrested and manhandled, including Pacifica's Amy Goodman, the host of "Democracy Now!" As Goodman describes what happened to her and two of her colleagues, "I was at the Xcel Center on the convention floor, interviewing delegates. I had just made it to the Minnesota delegation when I got a call on my cell phone with news that Sharif (Abdel Kouddous) and Nicole (Salazar) were being bloody arrested, in every sense. "Filmmaker Rick Rowley of Big Noise Films and I raced on foot to the scene. Out of breath, we arrived at the parking lot. I went up to the line of riot police and asked to speak to a commanding officer, saying that they had arrested accredited journalists. "Within seconds, they grabbed me, pulled me behind the police line and forcibly twisted my arms behind my back and handcuffed me, the rigid plastic cuffs digging into my wrists. I saw Sharif, his arm bloody, his credentials hanging from his neck. "I repeated we were accredited journalists, whereupon a Secret Service agent came over and ripped my convention credential from my neck. I was taken to the St. Paul police garage where cages were set up for protesters. I was charged with obstruction of a peace officer. Nicole and Sharif were taken to jail, facing riot charges." While what happened to Amy Goodman was no doubt deplorable as was the abuse that protesters endured in jail, what could be perhaps more chilling to the average American is the fact that other participants in the RNC protests are actually facing terrorism charges - on little to no actual evidence. 'Furthering Terrorism' On the same day that Palin gave her speech mocking the rights of terror suspects, eight alleged leaders of an anti-authoritarian activist group called the RNC Welcoming Committee were formally charged with "Conspiracy to Riot in Furtherance of Terrorism." The eight are being prosecuted under a 2002 Minnesota state law modeled on the USA Patriot Act. They now face up to over seven years in prison under the terrorism enhancement charge, with the only evidence against them apparently the testimony of law enforcement officials who infiltrated their organization. Under the 2002 state law, a crime is considered to "further terrorism" if it is "intended" to "terrorize, intimidate, or coerce a considerable number of members of the public in addition to the direct victims of the act." If accused of "furthering terrorism," individuals face a 50 percent increase in the maximum penalty they would receive for committing similar crimes (such as vandalism) that are not "intended" to "coerce" the public. The language of the Minnesota law is eerily similar to the original Patriot Act, passed hastily in the aftermath of 9/11. Section 802 of the Patriot Act defines domestic terrorism as "activities that (A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the U.S. or any state; (B) appear to be intended (i) to influence policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (ii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and (C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the U.S. ..." Groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union and the American Bar Association have long objected to this definition, particularly the provision of (B)(i). The prohibition against seeking to influence government policy by "intimidation" is so vague and so subjective that virtually any act of civil disobedience or confrontational protest could fit under the definition, the critics have said. Now it is clear that these concerns were valid. While there have been other cases in which activists have been investigated by the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force and otherwise treated as "terrorists," the arrest of these eight individuals clearly marks an escalation of what some have called "the criminalization of dissent," and what others see as the merger of domestic law enforcement and the larger "global war on terror." RNC 8 The case of the "RNC 8" reminds those engaged in protest activities that they need not actually commit a crime to be accused of terrorism. As the National Lawyers Guild points out, "The criminal complaints filed by the Ramsey County Attorney do not allege that any of the defendants personally have engaged in any act of violence or damage to property. The complaints list all of [the] alleged violations of law during the last few days of the RNC ... and seeks to hold the eight defendants responsible for acts committed by other individuals." In other words, without a shred of physical evidence, and based solely on the testimony of police officers who infiltrated the RNC Welcoming Committee, these individuals are being held responsible for the alleged criminal actions of others simply because they were involved with a group that advocated disrupting the RNC with confrontational acts of protest. At best, it can be considered guilt by association. But if Sarah Palin and the Republican Party were to have their way, these individuals would not even have the ability to challenge these charges in court. After all, they are accused of terrorism, and as the Republicans have made clear, those accused of terrorism don't have any rights - not even the right to habeas corpus, a centuries-old legal tradition that affords the accused the right to face their accuser and challenge their detention in a court of law. This is a point that Barack Obama actually made as a follow-up to Palin's comment at the RNC. Obama, who used to teach constitutional law at the University of Chicago, said on Sept. 8 that captured terror suspects deserve at least the right to file writs of habeas corpus challenging their detention. Calling it "the foundation of Anglo-American law," he said the principle of habeas corpus "says very simply: If the government grabs you, then you have the right to at least ask, 'Why was I grabbed?' And say, 'Maybe you've got the wrong person.'" In the case of the RNC 8, the principle may be even more fundamental than that. Without the right of habeas corpus, these individuals would never be able to face their accusers and see the evidence against them - which, according to their lawyers is nothing more than the accusations of police officers who infiltrated their organization. But considering the direction that law enforcement has been heading, and the ever-growing equation of protest activism with "terrorism," it is not inconceivable that someday defendants such as the RNC 8 may not even have the chance to defend themselves in court. It is especially chilling how enthusiastically Sarah Palin's mockery of Americans' constitutional rights was received in St. Paul by the convention delegates. And with the relative silence that the story of RNC protests and police abuse has received in the mainstream media, it is doubtful many would even notice if constitutional rights continue to be rolled back. Nat Parry is co-author of Neck Deep: The Disastrous Presidency of George W. Bush. --12-- ==events== 1. 9/11 street action 9.11 12:30pm 2. 9/11 film 9.11 5pm 3. Peace class 9.27 register now ==1== Date: Wed, 10 Sep 2008 11:05:22 -0500 From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: THUR.9/11 Street Action Honor the anniversary by coming out and talking to citizens one on one at Nicollet Mall. This is would be a great way to contribute on the 7th anniversary. Hope to see you there! On Tue, 9/9/08, We Are Change Minnesota <noreply [at] mnchange.org> wrote: From: We Are Change Minnesota <noreply [at] mnchange.org> Subject: Street Action 9-11-2008 September 11th 2008 Street Action Street action: bring your signs, DVDs and fliers. Stand with us for truth and educate the people on the crimes of 9/11, the wars & the erosion of our rights etc. Nicollet Ave S & 9th St S, Minneapolis, MN 55401 Thursday, September 11th, 12:30pm ==2== From: Catherine Statz [mailto:statz001 [at] umn.edu] Subject: 9/11 film 9.11 5pm 7th Anniversary September 11 Event Richard Gage's, 9/11 Blueprint for Truth - Thursday 5:20 PM, September 11, 2008 (Doors open at 5 pm). On Thursday, September 11, 2008, the MN 9/11 group will sponsor a screening of "9/11 Blueprint for Truth".. In this stunning multimedia presentation to the University of Manitoba, Canada, San Francisco Bay Area architect, Richard Gage, AIA, provides a packed audience with a tough technical review of the overwhelming evidence of controlled demolition using explosives at all 3 WTC high-rise "collapses" (including WTC 7 - the 47 story high-rise, not hit by an airplane, which also fell at near free-speed on 9/11). <http://www.ae911truth.org/store.php> The film will start at 5:20 PM at the Riverview Theater, 3800 42nd Ave S (E 38th St & 42nd Ave S), Minneapolis, MN 55406 (612-729-7369). Admission is $5.00. Popcorn, pop, and other snacks will be available for purchase. For more information, please contact a MN 9/11 group member ( <mailto:falseflagoperation [at] yahoo.com> falseflagoperation [at] yahoo.com). www.mn911truth.org ==3== From: reilly [at] augsburg.edu Subject: Peace class - register Come join the discussion on peace and law: The Great Law of Peace class. It's a class about the Great Law of Peace of the Iriqouis Confederacy of Five and then Six Nations, and about indigenous approaches to peace in general. This class is free and collaborative, a part of the U of M Experimental College. Anyone can come meet us on Saturdays, from 3 to 5 pm, in the coffee shop next to Birchbark Books, at 2115 W. 21st St. in Minneapolis. The first meeting is on Saturday Sept. 27. Please register at www.excotc.org or write to the facilitator, Becca, at becca [at] wrongway.org --13-- Ten Ways the McCain/Palin GOP Is Now Stealing the Ohio Vote by Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman Published on Tuesday, September 9, 2008 by CommonDreams.org The McCain/Palin GOP is already in the process of stealing the Ohio vote, as was done in 2004. Among those at the center of the GOP strategy is Bush Family computer operative Michael Connell, who programmed the key vote counting mechanisms that were used to give George W. Bush his second term. Except for John Kennedy in 1960, no candidate since 1856 (James Buchanan) has won the White House without carrying the Buckeye State. No Republican has ever done it. On October 27, 2004, we published "Twelve Ways Bush is Now Stealing the Ohio Vote" at www.FreePress.org. Despite four years of denial by the Democratic Party and the corporate media, all methods mentioned in that article (plus many more) were used in the theft that gave George W. Bush his second term. Much has now changed in Ohio, including the transition from a Republican Governor (Robert Taft) and Secretary of State (J. Kenneth Blackwell) to Democrats Ted Strickland and Jennifer Brunner. Brunner has made strong public commitments to conducting a fair registration process, an orderly election and a reliable vote count this fall. She is being pushed by the King-Lincoln-Bronzeville federal civil rights lawsuit, filed originally against Blackwell. To help guarantee an election that truly reflects the will of the voters, Freepress.org will convene a conference on election protection procedures web-cast from Columbus this September 26-8. It will reinforce the positive steps Brunner has taken, and will help train poll workers and judges to safeguard the vote in Ohio and around the nation. But much of the electoral apparatus remains beyond public control. Serious questions remain about how reliable the final vote count will be, and how much of it the Republican party will cage, confuse and steal in its crusade to put John McCain and Sarah Palin into the White House. Here are some of the key factors that still endanger the vote in Ohio and around the nation: 1) Illegal Destruction of Evidence Surrounding the Vote Count In a federal court decision delivered in August, 2006, Judge Algernon Marbley ruled that all materials related to the 2004 presidential vote in Ohio must be preserved. Standing federal law required that these materials be protected for 22 months dating from November 4, 2004. In response to the King-Lincoln lawsuit, Marbley's decision came in time to make it a federal offense to destroy any poll books, ballots and other records relating to the 2004 election in Ohio at any time. Around the time of the decision, GOP Secretary of State Blackwell, who also served as Ohio co-chair of the 2004 Bush-Cheney campaign, issued ambivalent orders to the state's 88 county Boards of Elections about preserving these materials. Blackwell subsequently lost his 2006 campaign for governor of Ohio, and was replaced by Brunner as secretary of state. Brunner publicly announced that she would establish a repository in Columbus for all 2004 election materials. In accordance with the King-Lincoln lawsuit, a definitive recount would then establish what actually happened during the Bush re-election. But in August of 2007, Ohio Attorney-General Mark Dann informed the King-Lincoln attorneys that 56 of the 88 county Boards of Elections had illegally destroyed all or some of their records and ballots from 2004. No repository has been established for what remains, and no definitive recount is now possible. Ironically, Florida Governor Jeb Bush did preserve materials from the 2000 election there from all but one of the counties in that state. The materials are being held in a repository in Tallahassee. But no such resource---and no definitive recount---will be possible in Ohio. There have been no state or federal prosecutions for the illegal destruction of these materials. Nor does there seem to be any guarantee similar destruction will not follow the 2008 election. 2) Massive Residual Elimination of Registered Voters In the run-up to the 2004 elections, GOP-controlled Boards of Elections in Ohio eliminated some 308,000 registered voters from the rolls used at the polls to determine whether or not citizens are eligible to vote. The purges were conducted in heavily Democratic districts in Cuyahoga (Cleveland), Lucas (Toledo) and Hamilton (Cincinnati) Counties. The numbers of voters eliminated represented more than 5% of the 5.4 million Ohioans who voted in 2004. The GOP also challenged the right of some 35,000 registered voters to cast ballots, based largely on letters the Republicans sent to voters which then came back undelivered, thus allowing them to claim the lack of a valid address. Challenges were also issued to prevent thousands of ex-felons from voting, even though there is no state law disenfranchising them. Overall, the removals far exceeded Bush's official victory margin of less than 119,000 votes. After the 2004 election, another 170,000 voters were eliminated in Franklin (Columbus) County, also now heavily Democratic. Despite massive grassroots voter registration drives, those voters have never been restored to the registration lists. None were notified when they were eliminated, and no public accounting has been made of exactly who was disenfranchised. Parallel purges were used in Florida 2000, and throughout the US in 2004. There is every reason to believe the GOP will repeat them in 2008 wherever possible. 3) Renewed Attempts to Eliminate Additional Registered Voters Throughout Ohio's 88 counties, GOP-controlled Boards of Elections have continued "caging" registered voters by sending them notices requiring that the post office return those that cannot be delivered. A loophole in Ohio law allows partisan challengers to then demand that the names of those whose forms come back be eliminated from the voter rolls. This practice has been used by the GOP throughout the nation to purge voter rolls in inner city precincts. In many cases those removed are soldiers currently serving in Iraq. The Advancement Project has notified Brunner that it will challenge any mass purges in Ohio 2008. For her part, Brunner has ruled that returned notices cannot be used as a basis for eliminating voters from the registration rolls. She has further attempted to counter-act the purges by requiring that any registered voter fingered for removal be issued notice and given a pubic hearing by the purging BOE. But the process remains intimidating for prospective voters---especially the heavily-targeted list of those voting for the first time. With sixty days left to election day, the on-going impact remains unclear. 4-5) Resisting Universal Access to Absentee Ballots While Re-introducing Chaos Brunner and voting rights advocates want the Boards of Elections in all 88 Ohio counties to mail absentee ballots to all voters. Previous restrictions on casting such ballots have been lifted. Brunner has strongly supported the practice of making these paper ballots available throughout the state. It would, among other things, help eliminate long lines at the polls, increase access for the infirm and disabled, and circumvent electronic voting machines, which her office has deemed to be easily corruptible. "As we prepare for Election Day," Brunner has said, "we are promoting clear, consistent, statewide standards for absentee voting. Every Ohioan who requests an absentee ballot should have the same rights and responsibilities," no matter what county they might be in. Ohio's GOP leadership has made a loud public show of supporting this universal access to absentee ballots. But the Republican-controlled legislature pointedly failed to authorize enough money to the Secretary of State's office to pay for the full mailing. In a stunning display of public cynicism, the GOP leadership has since told Brunner, in a non-binding promise, that she should just go ahead and order the local BOE's to do the mailings. The Legislature, they say, will then vote the additional money at some point in the future. Brunner has refused to do this, pointing out that the potential shortfall would be in the millions, and that such an order---in essence, an unfunded mandate---might be illegal. As a result, using a calculation based on per capita postage rates, she has informed every BOE how much state money they can expect. She is encouraging those that have the additional money in their budgets to do the mailings on their own. The GOP-sponsored shortfall has thus introduced chaos into what should have been the orderly, manageable process of providing every Ohioan with a paper ballot prior to election day. As it now stands, some counties will be mailing absentee ballots and others will not. The uneven distribution is expected to favor GOP voters in better-funded rural and suburban districts. Should problems arise as a result of this uneven distribution, the GOP will certainly blame Brunner. 6) Resisting Same-Day Registration and Voting A loophole in a recently passed Ohio election law allows voters to register to vote and then cast an absentee ballot at the same time by coming in person to their Board of Elections between September 30 and October 6. Ironically, the loophole was accidentally inserted into an otherwise highly repressive bill by Republican State Senator KevinDewine, second cousin of the former US Senator Mike DeWine, who lost his seat in 2006. By allowing voters to cast absentee ballots as they register, they can avoid long election-day lines and the perils of electronic voting machines. Furthermore, the only election ID required is the last four digits of the voter's Social Security number. The Ohio Republican Party has called on Brunner "to revoke a directive to allow residents to register to vote and cast an absentee ballot the same day." The GOP says her directive is illegal. The party is expected to deploy a full attack on this provision that would otherwise allow thousands of Ohioans to participate in the process for the first time with relative ease and security. 7) The Persistent Spread of Electronic Voting Machines In addition to mass elimination of Democratic voters, a principle method of stealing the 2004 election in Ohio was through the manipulation of electronic voting machines. Since then, the Ohio-based Diebold Company has admitted that its machines are vulnerable to manipulation and the dropping of significant numbers of votes. Decertification and lawsuits involving Diebold and other electronic machines in California and elsewhere have proliferated. Some 800,000 Ohio ballots---representing about 15% of the state's vote---were cast on Diebold machines in 2004. Additional votes were cast in Ohio and nationwide on machines made by ES&S, Hart Inner-Civic,Triad and others, all of whom have come under serious legal and legislative scrutiny. Studies by the Brennan Center, Princeton University, the Carter-Baker Commission, the Government Accountability Office, the Conyers Committee and others, have all concluded that results coming from such machines can be easily manipulated, and election outcomes reversed, with just a few keystrokes. A $1.5 million report to Brunner's office concluded that electronic machines could easily have been used to steal the 2004 election in Ohio. But because of the Help America Vote Act, authored by former Ohio Congressman Bob Ney (just recently released from Federal prison), electronic voting machines will be in far greater use in Ohio and around the nation during the 2008 election than ever before. The reinstatement of electronic voting machines has also been forced into effect in New York and elsewhere despite widespread attempts to require the use of paper ballots. Without a massive influx of absentee ballots, voters in 54 of Ohio's counties are likely to be forced to use touchscreen machines, with parallel increases nationwide. This includes Ohio's largest city, Columbus, and other major urban center such as Dayton, Toledo and Youngstown. In 2004, the compiled tabulation of Ohio's electronic vote was deisgned for Secretary of State Blackwell by Michael Connell, a Bush family loyalist who programmed the Bush-Cheney web site in the 2000 election. Connell directed the Ohio vote count to servers in a basement in Chattanooga, Tennessee, which also housed e-mail traffic for the White House. Thousands of emails from Karl Rove and other key Bush Administration operatives have mysteriously disappeared from servers in this basement. Many worked side-by-side with the Connell-designed ones to which Ohio's official election results were outsourced, under supervision by Rove and Blackwell. Like Rove, Connell now works for the McCain/Palin campaign. An IT associate, Steve Spoonamore, himself a McCain supporter, has stated that Connell's IT apparatus can be used to steal elections. Attempts to force Connell to testify under oath have thus far been successfully resisted by the GOP. Brunner has ordered a halt to some better-known e-voting abuses, such as "sleep overs" whereby electronic machines have been stored at the homes of poll workers prior to election day. At the behest of attorneys working through the King-Lincoln lawsuit, other potential abuses in the electronic apparatus are being exposed and eliminated by Brunner. She has issued the 2008-74 County Board of Elections Security and Risk Mitigation Plan which requires Boards of Elections to secure the machines and file plans that safeguard the hardware and software as well as establish chain of custody. Her 2008-73 memorandum, concerning "Minimum Security Requirements of Vote Tabulation Servers," mandates that "Each board of elections shall develop and/or maintain a policy for account and password management for granting access to the server and access to related workstations, if any, for its election system." The directive goes on to require that, "Each Board of Elections shall have a policy for maintaining sign-in documentation of server activity and related workstation activity..." "We want Ohio's voters and the rest of the nation to see that we have prepared a transparent process of transporting voting equipment, ballots and supplies," Brunner says. "That begins with security practices at boards of elections and polling places, documented chain of custody, and now procedures to make secure voting machine delivery." But electronic touchscreen voting remains a black hole through which a close election could once again be stolen, in Ohio and throughout the nation. 8) Residual Chaos From Precinct Elimination and Manipulation In the lead-up to Ohio 2004, Blackwell eliminated numerous precincts where voters had cast their ballots for decades. Consolidation was uneven. Some 321 precincts have been shifted in Franklin County alone. Blackwell admitted to a Congressional hearing that false, misleading and out-of-date information was posted on the state's official web site, misdirecting thousands of voters to the wrong polling stations. In many cases, they were then denied the right to vote altogether, or forced to cast provisional ballots which were never counted. The chaos resulting from these precinct eliminations has not been entirely overcome. For financial and other reasons, Brunner has not restored all the precincts to pre-Blackwell levels. It is expected that her website will provide accurate information about precinct status and location. But it's likely some problems will persist. 9) Data Mining Early indications are that the Republicans are heavily involved in data mining. Registered voters are already reporting strange letters from undisclosed senders or unidentified nonprofit organizations "welcoming" voters to the system. As in 2004, voters should expect a deluge of phone calls as well, telling them if they vote they'll be arrested if they have outstanding parking and traffic tickets, back child support payments due, or are on parole, probation or reside in a halfway house. None of these are legal grounds for disenfranchisement. But we expect thousands of such calls will be made to keep first-time and uninformed voters away from the polls. 10) Expanded Voter Identification Requirements A US Supreme Court decision has upheld an Indiana law, drafted and passed by the GOP, requiring photographic identification for voter registration. Because millions of young, poor, homeless, minority and elderly voters may not have voter ID, various state laws are expected to eliminate large numbers of mostly Democratic voters from casting ballots throughout the country. In key swing states like Ohio, which now require ID other than signature to vote (except by absentee ballot), the outcome of the election could be significantly affected. Attempts by voter registration organizations to help such voters obtain suitable ID are proceeding. But the law may still deprive crucial numbers of citizens their right to vote, and play a decisive role in the November 4 outcome. Overall, there is no doubt that four years of intense public scrutiny, legal action and grassroots organizing have made the theft of the 2008 election in many ways a more difficult proposition. Widespread training of poll workers, poll judges and independent observers (including video teams) will add to the safeguards available during the registration process, voting and vote count. Should thousands of trained election protection activists committed to the democratic process come to the polls this year, it may prove impossible for the 2008 election to be stolen, as happened in 2000 and 2004. But the Supreme Court approval of photo identification requirements and the proliferation of electronic voting machines will prove serious challenges to a fair registration, voting and vote count process. Given the number of ploys used by the GOP in Ohio and elsewhere in 2004, it's certain additional methods of election theft will surface this year that no one has seen before. Unless they are effectively countered, there is little doubt that John McCain and Sarah Palin will follow George W. Bush and Dick Cheney into the White House. Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman are co-authors of four books on the electoral process, including AS GOES OHIO: ELECTION THEFT SINCE 2004, newly published at www.freepress.org and www.harveywasserman.com. They are attorney and plaintiff in the King-Lincoln-Bronzeville federal lawsuit, and co-convenors of the national election protection conference to be web-cast from Columbus September 26-28 through www.freepress.org. Their other books include HOW THE GOP STOLE AMERICA'S 2004 ELECTION & IS RIGGING 2008 (Freepress.org, harveywasserman.com) and WHAT HAPPENED IN OHIO, co-authored with Steve Rosenfeld, from The New Press. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8 vote third party for president for congress now and forever
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