|Progressive Calendar 11.18.08||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Tue, 18 Nov 2008 07:24:56 -0800 (PST)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 11.18.08 1. Anoka airport 11.18 11am 2. Smash the empire 11.18 5pm 3. $ crisis/South 11.18 6pm 4. Open discussion 11.18 6:30pm 5. Palestine/I****l 11.18 7pm 6. Ed Felien/book 11.18 7:30pm 7. E3 2008 11.18 8. Foreclosures 11.19 11am 9. US economy 11.19 12noon StCloud MN 10. Liberia 11.19 12noon 11. Bus/GA 11.21 12. Steve Conn - Where is Nader Country 2008? Mapping Nader voters 13. Mickey Z - Some things are bigger than any of us 14. Rannie Amiri - Dual loyalties will doom Obama (+ ed comment) 15. ed - bumperstickers --------1 of 15-------- From: Ron Holch [mailto:rrholch [at] attg.net] Subject: Anoka airport 11.18 11am Anoka Airport Expansion! I just found out about this sudden move of the County Commissioners. I say sudden because I read the paper and listen to the radio and watch the TV News every day. I did not see this important issue mentioned anywhere until I received an email just 24 hours ago. It is my understanding that this proposal is up for 2 votes in 2 committees back to back just 2 days from now. I assume that this expansion idea must have been in the works for quite some time. I agree with your contention that "we gather all the facts and analyze the impact of the proposal before we prematurely draw any conclusions." I should think that would also apply to any vote to decide to move the proposal forward. I believe that public input is essential here. Simply informing taxpayers after the fact is not enough. Could you please forward a timeline for any and all decisions regarding the Airport expansion so that I may pass this along to others? Also, could you please consider scheduling the public meeting on an evening or weekend date? -Thank You, Ron Holch _____ From: Robyn West [mailto:robyn_jay_west [at] msn.com] Subject: RE: FYI Anoka Airport Expansion! As you note, any extension or change in the Blaine airport is a very important issue. I share your concerns, however, I believe it is of critical importance that we gather all the facts and analyze the impact of the proposal before we prematurely draw any conclusions. Thus, a public meeting is planned for the week following Thanksgiving. You will have an opportunity at that time to ask questions of experts on this subject and voice your concerns. We will have a firm date for the public meeting later this week and I will pass that information onto you. I look forward to seeing you there. - Robyn West 2660 Deer Ridge Blaine, MN 55449 cell 612-804-8207 _____ To: rrholch [at] attg.net Subject: FYI Anoka Airport Expansion! Notice: Critical Meetings to expand Blaine Airport impacting your neighborhood and quality of life! Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 11:00 AM at the Anoka County Govt. Center Room 772 with the second committee meeting on the same issue at 11:45 AM in Room 772. Anoka County Board of Commissioners committees will be meeting to vote on a resolution supporting the expansion of the Blaine Airport. If it leaves the county board with approval, it will not be easily stopped. If you think that you will not be impacted because you live in the Western or Northern part of Anoka County--think again. If property values plummet in the impacted areas of the county, your property tax burden will grow. If you live in Shoreview, Moundsview, or neighboring communities, you will likely be impacted by the noise. Below is a summary of what is happening: First of all, I think that the people pushing this are well-intentioned in thinking that extending the runway to 6000 ft from the existing 5000 is important for safety, however, I do not believe that they understand the ramifications of approving the extension beyond the 5000 ft. What happens when you move beyond 5000 ft is that the classification of the airport changes to an intermediate airport which could have devastating impacts on the surrounding neighborhoods and communities. Years ago legislation was put in place that prohibited the expansion beyond 5000 ft without the consent of an affected local govt entity. Unfortunately, my colleagues at the county have decided that they are going to rush this local approval through the county, without the chance for the public to respond so that it will then rest in the hands of the legislature. The danger of that is great as once it leaves the local entity, anything can and will happen. MPLS legislato rs along with the Metropolitan Airport Commission have desired for years to move the unwanted traffic from the Mpls airport to another airport. The Blaine airport has the largest land mass of any other airport in the system, so once it jumps to the intermediate status, which is 5001 ft to 8000 ft runway, the cargo type traffic could be diverted to Blaine. Once legislation is approved to go beyond 5000 ft, it may not stop at 6000 ft--it may go beyond that. What can you do??? 1. Attend the meetings 2. Call your county commissioner as well as the others on the board. Dennis Berg--Chair of the Board Telephone: 763-323-5700 (Government Center) 763-753-3014 (Home) Robyn West Telephone: 763-323-5700 (Government Center) 612-804-8207 (Cell) Dick Lang Telephone: 763-323-5700 (Government Center) 763-434-6707 (Home) 612-760-1600 (Cell) Scott LeDoux (chairs the Airport Committee and sits on Intergovernmental Committee which will hear this issue) Telephone: 763-323-5700 (Government Center) 612-229-4269 (Cell) Dan Erhart (chairs Intergovernmental which will hear this issue and sits on Airport Committee) Telephone: 763-323-5700 (Government Center) 763-421-1884 (Home) Jim Kordiak Telephone: 763-323-5700 (Government Center) 763-788-9651 (Office) [Sneak a major change down the citizens' throats? Standard arrogant ruling-class manipulation, and contempt for anyone not themsleves. Any system in which they rule is a bad system. -ed] --------2 of 15-------- From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net> Subject: Smash the empire 11.18 5pm Sweet St. Paul Neighborhood Network (SPNN) viewers: "Our World In Depth" cablecasts on SPNN Channel 15 on Tuesdays at 5pm, midnight and Wednesday mornings at 10am, after DemocracyNow! All households with basic cable may watch. Tues, 11/18, 5pm & midnight and Wed, 11/19, 10am Phyllis Bennis. Pt 2, audience questions and response after "Challenging Empire" talk in St. Paul in April. (repeat) --------3 of 15-------- From: ICGC <icgc [at] UMN.EDU> Subject: $ crisis/South 11.18 6pm Teach-In on the Financial Crisis AND THE GLOBAL SOUTH Tuesday November 18, 2008, 6:00-8:00 pm 3M Auditorium (Room 1-115), Carlson School of Management University of Minnesota The current financial crisis impacts not only Wall Street and the United states financial markets, but also the global economy and people in other pars of the world. Join us to learn more about the impact of the financial crisis in the Global South and on U.S. communities of color and immigrant communities. A panel of distinguished scholars will offer insights into these dimensions of the current economic situation and answer your questions. Among the speakers are: Professor Nasrin Jewell, Department of Economics, College of St. Catherine will highlight the effects of the financial crisis on the developing countries, the "global south." She will include comments on the historical role of IMF, and possible changes due to the current crisis. Professor August Nimtz, Department of Political Science, University of Minnesota will speak to the crisis and the logic of late late capitalism, discussing the Marxist analysis of the crisis as long overdue and only in its initial phases and how it relates to the struggle between capital and labor. Professor Peter Rachleff, Department of History, Macalester College will address the framework of global neoliberalism, the crisis of employment, and the positioning of immigrants. Professor Joe Soss, Cowles Chair for the Study of Public Service, Humphrey Institute, University of Minnesota, will speak to the experience of the financial crisis in US communities of color, with attention to racial dimensions of the mortgage crisis, and link his discussion to broader neoliberal economic policy shifts. Moderated by Regents Professor ERIC SHEPPARD, Department of Geography and Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Global Change, University of Minnesota Light refreshments will be provided Further information can be found at ICGC website at http://icgc.umn.edu/ Driving directions to the Carlson School of Management and information on parking are available at http://www.csom.umn.edu/page3409.aspx --------4 of 15-------- From: patty <pattypax [at] earthlink.net> Subject: Open Discussion 11.18 6:30pm It's time for the Salon Open Discussion, and what better time than this. This Tuesday, Nov. 18. With the election just past, we have alot to talk about. Come and let us hear your reactions and reflections on our new president. Next week, Nov. 25 , we will have our 6th year anniversary party for the salon. And, next Saturday, Nov 22, we are starting the movie of the month. It isn't a salon, just a time to come to a movie at the tea house, using our new projector on big screen. I think the first film will be in honor of Paul Newman, Cool Hand Luke. Pax Salons ( http://justcomm.org/pax-salon ) are held (unless otherwise noted in advance): Tuesdays, 6:30 to 8:30 pm. Mad Hatter's Tea House, 943 W 7th, St Paul, MN Salons are free but donations encouraged for program and treats. Call 651-227-3228 or 651-227-2511 for information. --------5 of 15-------- From: Lydia Howell <lydiahowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Palestine/I****l 11.18 7pm [ed head] TUE.NOV. 18:7:00 PM THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN IMPASSE: Reflections from the West Bank and Jerusalem 7:00 PM - 9:30 PM Leonard Center: Hall of Fame Room, Macalester College Join Macalester faculty and staff who participated in the 2008 Faculty Development International Seminar (FDIS) in the Middle East. Students, faculty and staff will learn and exchange ideas about: * Living Under Occupation and Conflict * Images of Hope and Despair * Possibilities and Limitations of Dialogue * Visions of the Future The forum is chaired by Michael Monahan, director of the International Center and co-coordinator of the seminar, and features reflections on selected themes by Wendy Weber (Political Science), Chuen-Fung Wong (Music), and Olga Gonzales (Anthropology). Light snacks will be provided. Sponsored by the International Center. Sponsored by: Institute for Global Citizenship <http://events.macalester.edu/eventsbysponsor.cfm?Sponsor=2436> --------6 of 15-------- From: david unowsky <david.unowsky [at] gmail.com> Subject: Ed Felien/book 11.18 7:30pm MAGERS AND QUINN: Long-time local activist and publisher Ed Felien discusses his book *Take The Streets*, a description of actions by radicals and anti-war activists in Minneapolis in May of 1972 - 7:30pm, Tuesday, November 18, at Magers & Quinn Booksellers. "The following was written in the summer of 1972. I never got around to publishing it until now. Things came up. I got involved in other things, but I always believed it was important for radicals and anti-war activists to remember those events in May of 1972 when we caused a genuine insurrection on the streets of Minneapolis to try to stop an obscene war in Southeast Asia. Today few people talk about those events. Our history has been written out of their history books, but it's not too late to correct the record."--from the preface by Ed Felien For further information, contact: David Unowsky 612/822-4611 davidu [at] magersandquinn.com MAGERS AND QUINN BOOKSELLERS 3038 HENNEPIN AVENUE SOUTH MINNEAPOLIS MN 55408 612-822-4611 www.magersandquinn.com --------7 of 15-------- From: Institute on the Environment <danie419 [at] umn.edu> Subject: E3 2008 11.18 E3 2008! [I have very litto info on this - ed] If you've ever wondered about the potential for algae to cure our oil addiction, the future of solar power or the role the media plays in environmental awareness, don't miss out on E3 2008: The Midwest's Premier Energy, Economic and Environmental Conference. Visit the E3 Web site to sign up for the conference, taking place Nov. 18 at the St. Paul RiverCentre, and to learn about this year's keynote speakers, breakout sessions, research posters and other details. --------8 of 15-------- From: Andy Driscoll <andy [at] driscollgroup.com> Subject: Foreclosures 11.19 11am TRUTH TO TELL WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 19: 11:00AM FORECLOSURE TSUNAMI: Thousands More in the Streets? Even as Washington ducks and dodges the real issues of the descending recession, bailing out criminally irresponsible banking enterprises with hundreds of billions of tax dollars, the detritus of their folly resides in some seven million foreclosures nationwide and thousands across Minnesota. Rural and city dwellers alike find their housing values tanking while interest rate rises and fraudulently issued mortgages are turning the American dream into the nightmare we should have seen coming. Has the American penchant for getting something for nothing once again come home to roost in the streets and pocketbooks of even the once-dominant middle class? Who's really responsible for this disastrous and despairing loss of simple shelter for so many of us? TTT's ANDY DRISCOLL and LYNNELL MICKELSEN explore the ways in which our need and desire for home-ownership and real estate investment as the core of our economy have collapsed under the weight of greed and incompetence. GUESTS: JEFF CRUMP - Associate Professor, Housing Studies, UofM College of Design ED NELSON - Marketing/Communications Manager, Minnesota Homeownership Center OTHERS TBD KFAI Radio, 90.3 Minneapolis /106.7 St. Paul / Streamed @ KFAI.org A CivicMedia/Minnesota production --------9 of 15-------- From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org> Subject: US economy 11.19 12noon StCloud MN St. Cloud State University Women's Center. Women on Wednesday Series featuring Women and Politics: The U. S. Economy: A Downward Spiral? with presenter Dr. Jenny Keil. Noon - 1 PM at Atwood Theater. --------10 of 15-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Liberia 11.19 7pm Wednesday, 11/19, 7 pm, Advocates for Human Rights presents free film "Iron Ladies of Liberia" about the 2006 election of Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and the task of lifting her country from debt and devastation, St Anthony Park Library, 2245 Como Ave, St Paul. http://www.mnadvocates.org --------11 of 15-------- From: Steve Clemens <steveclemens [at] msn.com> Subject: Bus/GA 11.21 There are still about 4-5 seats available on a bus taking people to the annual Close the School of the Americas events in GA. The bus will leave Friday 11/21at 9AM and return Monday afternoon. Cost of $205. includes shared hotel room. Contact David Weiss at (651)492-1776 ASAP. --------12 of 15-------- Mapping Nader Voters Where is Nader Country 2008? By STEVE CONN counterPunch November 17, 2008 Where is "Ralph Nader country?" We know that "Marlboro Country" is a lung cancer ward and "Countrywide" is a landscape of empty and boarded up homes as far as the eye can see, but where is Nader Country.? If I were presumptuous, I would say, behind every seatbelt. In 2008, after his third, serious, Presidential campaign, Nader Country is both where people voted for The Man and His Program and in the hearts and minds of his campaign staff, the alumni of 2008. Both deserve attention. In 2008 Ralph Nader ran an independent 45 state Presidential campaign and earned 695,817 votes (and counting) on 45 state ballots and the District of Columbia. Not included in this total are semi-disenfranchised write-in Nader voters - in Texas (3,053), Georgia (1,091), Indiana (300), and North Carolina, where 13,942 total write-ins were not divided by candidate, except by chance for 22 Nader voters in Rowan County, broken out in a local news report. American democracy's ultimate electoral black hole, Oklahoma, does not allow write-ins. With his typical Lou Gherig approach to civic engagement, Ralph Nader moved relentlessly through the fifty states, dragging along a new legion of twenty-something's, who could barely keep up with his seven decades. sprint, full of righteous indignation and a commitment to win votes for a progressive program ignored by the major party candidates. Boot camp for another generation of citizen activists was nearly over when I flew down to the 2008 Georgetown headquarters to check out his new crew, take their political temperatures and feel their pain. Sure enough, they had the look of combat veterans. I could only imagine what they had expected when invited on to the team and how bright and shiny they were then... The grind of a Presidential campaign, weathering the attacks from armchair liberals who expect to be spoon fed progress without effort and Nader's lead by example style had all done their jobs. Where else could these young adults experience this test of fire and a consistent demand that they use their own talents and initiative to make up for scant resources, while enduring consistent abuse by major party sycophants? The graduating classes of the 2000 and 2004 Presidential campaigns were already out there somewhere raising hell on other issues and other campaigns. Each campaign leaves this enduring residual legacy of new people who finally understand what Nader means when he challenges his audiences to act on their rights and duties as Public Citizens. The staff was battle-hardened from an experience rare for their time and circumstance in America. No fire hoses in Birmingham had quickened their maturation Each drew on talents and strengths which while newly discovered by them, had been anticipated by Nader when he brought them on. Any organization could use Ralph Nader to vet its new hires. So could President-elect Obama. The 2008 Ralph Nader campaign showed its verve in production of its video, photo art and web postings, all the work of the class of 2008. Funny and serious stuff. Now the graduates were ready to try their newly discovered strengths and talents to other places and take on other issues - once they got some rest. Nader, of course, was ready to plunge back into his normal grind. Plans were discussed among alumni to work within home Congressional districts. People who think they matter are angry at Nader now as others were at Martin Luther King when he broadened his agenda to matters of the war and the inequities of economic class. The attacks on Nader are always personal. He has a personality defect that makes him speaking out instead of going with the flow, his critics contend. Critics never complain explicitly that he is raising issues excised from the campaign debate of that moment by corporate funders and party operatives, pre-screened, you might say. That he is off script. That would be too honest. Progressives from the old days who broke with the 2000 and 2004 campaigns have only admitted privately in later years that their patrons demanded these public breaks with Ralph Nader and they meekly complied, throwing Nader under the bus as Obama did his pastor. Again, they never say that Nader campaign is bringing up issues not to be talked about except in smaller, liberal circles in nostalgic moments. While Nader demands, like clockwork, a repeal of the Taft -Hartley Act of 1947 in every Presidential run, union membership is in single digits and union demands for card checks as an organizing tool are all that's left in labor's collective memory of an organized labor movement before Taft-Hartley. But some of the graduates from the 2000 campaign are ensconced in the labor movement and have memories longer than their ages. So their time will come to press for more. Others from the 2000 and 2004 campaigns worked for Obama and the Greens or now focus on issue advocacy. They work on single payer health care or variants of the Equal Rights Amendment, the sleeping giant. Alumni are everywhere with their Nader campaign experience not always listed on their resumes, but imprinted indelibly on their psyches. One of Ralph Nader's strengths is his ability to spot talent and potential in unusual places. He found campaign staff all over the country. The days when he recruited from Ivy League Schools are over. Since his staff came from everywhere and his travels were ubiquitous, it is no surprise that his votes were clustered in places of similar diversity. So where - geographically - was Nader country in 2008? Nader won more votes than any other third party or independent in his 45 states, except in Montana where Ron Paul beat him. In aggregate numbers available to date, he got something over 700,000 votes in all or more than the population of Alaska. In the 45 states, where his name and that of Matt Gonzalez appeared on the ballot, he averaged about .63 percent of the votes cast. But he took at least one percent of the votes cast in Maine (1.5), North Dakota (1.3), Arkansas (1.2), Alaska (1.16), South Dakota (1.1), Connecticut (1.1), Idaho (1.1), and one percent each in Wyoming, Minnesota, Vermont, Oregon, West Virginia, and Rhode Island, according the Associated Press. Clusters of counties in Arkansas, South and North Dakota, Maine and West Virginia registered Ralph Nader vote totals of 2 percent or more. In Arkansas: Lawrence (3.3), Jackson (2.9), Newton (2.7), Poinsett and Woodruff (2.6), Clay (2.5), Montgomery (2.3), Van Buren and Sharp (2.20), Cleveland, Logan, and Sevier (2.1)) and Stone, Pike, and Greene (2). In South Dakota: Perkins (2.3), Sanborn (2.2) and Turner (2.) In North Dakota, Towner (2.8), Cavalier (2.6), Logan (2.5), Bowman and Kidder (2.3), Emmons, Divide and Renville (2.2) and Griggs, Grant and Mercer (2).In Maine: Grant, Oxford and Franklin (2).In West Virginia, Gilmer County (2.1). A bevy of counties from all over the country, among them Wahkiakkum, Yell, Scott, Randolph, Swift, Bon Homme, Oliver, Walsh, Foster and McIntosh counties, all finished with 1.9 percent for Nader. People in these counties know where you are. In 2012, if they get one or two more voters to go Nader's way, they.ll hit two percent. Note: Alaska has no counties to divide up its 3460 votes (and still counting). Nader Country and, at least, 700,283 recorded Nader voters (as of this writing) have spoken. The 2008 alumni will be heard from, you can be sure. Steve Conn lived in Alaska from 1972 until 2007. He is a retired professor, University of Alaska. His email is steveconn [at] hotmail.com. --------13 of 15-------- Some Things Are Bigger than Any of Us by Mickey Z. November 17th, 2008 Dissident Voice One of the good things about everything being so fucked up - about the culture being so ubiquitously destructive - is that no matter where you look - no matter what your gifts, no matter where your heart lies - there's good and desperately important work to be done. - Derrick Jensen In 1850, the Fugitive Slave Law was passed and both Northerners and Southerners were now legally required to turn in runaway slaves. One year later, Harriet Beecher Stowe wrote Uncle Tom's Cabin (or Life Among the Lowly) as a serial in an antislavery paper, The National Era. In 1852, the Boston publishing company Jewett published it as a book and, as they are wont to say, the rest is history. Widely considered to be the first social protest novel published in the United States (and the first major novel to have a black hero), Uncle Tom's Cabin sold more copies - with the exception of The Bible - than any book had ever sold in America until that point with sales reaching 300,000 copies in the first year. Stowe's graphic depiction of slave life - based on true stories personalized - the issue, reclaiming it from the sanitized domain of courtroom legalese. Her story outraged some and inspired many others. To her critics, she answered with A Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin in 1853 to provide documentation that every incident in her book had actually happened. Upon meeting Harriet Beecher Stowe in 1862, Abraham Lincoln remarked: "So you're the little woman that wrote the book that made this great war". There was a time when slavery was believed too deeply entrenched in American culture to ever be abolished. The movement to end this "peculiar institution" was made up of individuals willing to recognize that some things in life are bigger than any of us. Whether they literally risked their lives by rescuing slaves and running the Underground Railroad or they did their part by sewing clothes or blankets for escaped slaves or, yes, writing books like Uncle Tom's Cabin, the movement needed every single one of these brave humans doing their partsmall - or large. What seems impossible and irreversible today can be addressed if we're willing to wake up and do the hard work. If we're willing to stop making excuses for the reprehensible leaders (sic) - both political and corporatewho - profit from our complacency. So, the next time you're deciding between watching a Will & Grace re-run or updating your Facebook book, step up instead. Take a good, long look into heart and an even longer look at the choices you make all day, every day - not from place of guilt and shame but with a sense of revelation. Accept the challenge to be better human being, a more responsible earthling. It takes courage to perform self-examination. It takes courage to accept everything you know just might be wrong. It takes far more courage to do this than to volunteer to wage illegal and immoral wars. Let's face it: Things sucked under George W. Bush. Things will suck under Barack Obama. Things have sucked under every president. Nothing will change until we change our minds. We can't be as indifferent as those before us. They didn't think enough about future generations so now we have to work twice as hard. It sucks, I know, but this not an issue of fairness. It's about survival. Some things in life are bigger than any of us. The anti-slavery movement recognized this. Today, the entire planet is enslaved - to profit-seeking corporations and the corrupt politicians they own (yes, including the Pope of Hope). Are this generation's abolitionists ready to step up and create change? Not ask for change, create change. Why not embrace your outrage and frustration and let it challenge you, inspire you, and motivate you? Instead of channeling your ambitions toward climbing a mountain, running a marathon, or striving to make your first million before you're 30, what greater goal could any of us ever aim for than to leave the planet much better off than how we found it? You have nothing to lose but your chains. Mickey Z. is the author of the recently released Bizarro novel, CPR for Dummies, and can be found on the Web at MickeyZ.net. --------14 of 15-------- The Blue and White Elephant in the Oval Office Dual Loyalties Will Doom Obama By RANNIE AMIRI CounterPunch November 17, 2008 "Obviously he will influence the president to be pro-Israel. Why wouldn't he be? What is he, an Arab? He's not going to clean the floors of the White House." - Dr. Benjamin Emanuel, father of Rahm Emanuel, predicting his son's impact in an Obama administration (Ma'ariv, 6 Nov. 2008). History will record the 2008 U.S. presidential campaign to have been one in which American Arabs and Muslims were politically marginalized, ostracized and disparaged like no time before. Contrary to initial expectations, those bruised sensibilities are unlikely to find in President-elect Barack Obama the salve so desperately needed. The first hint of future disappointment came with the realization that although his background and upbringing inspired malicious rumors and innuendos, he did little if anything to rebuke their bigoted nature. After winning the presidency, the decision to employ the services of the Israel-firsters was a tell-tale sign the wounds will be left to fester. The whispering campaign against Obama was first started by Sen. Hillary Clinton and continued thereafter by a consortium of Republican operatives, all directly or indirectly impugning Obama was a closet Muslim - shamelessly using the term in the pejorative - and ergo, dangerous. In September, a shadowy "nonprofit" organization called The Clarion Fund (subsequently discovered to be synonymous with the fundamentalist Israeli group Aish HaTorah or "Fire of the Torah") distributed the anti-Muslim DVD "Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West" to 28 million households. It was a transparent attempt to bolster Sen. John McCain's chances in battleground states using fear-mongering tactics. Remarkably, Obama reinforced the same Islamophobia. His staff prohibited two women wearing the hijab, or Islamic head scarf, from sitting behind him in full view of the cameras at a Detroit rally. He described the mischaracterization of him as a Muslim as a "smear". He also forsook campaigning with Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), America's first Muslim congressmen (and certainly not because he is African-American). To help repair the damage, Mazen Asbahi, a Chicago corporate lawyer, was appointed as Muslim outreach coordinator. He was quickly forced to resign on flimsy links to extremist groups promulgated by right-wing bloggers and picked up by the Wall Street Journal. Just recently, Obama disowned his friend Dr. Rashid Khalidi, renowned, distinguished professor and Edward Said Chair of Arab Studies at Columbia University, after vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin labeled him an "extremist" and John McCain called him a "neo-Nazi". Despite all this, American Muslims voted overwhelmingly for Obama. A poll of 600 Muslims in 10 states conducted by the American Muslim Task Force on Civil Rights and Elections revealed 95% of those polled voted - the highest percentage turnout ever recorded for a single group in a U.S. election. Of those, eight-nine percent voted for Obama, nearly matching the record 93% of African-Americans who did so. As the punching bag throughout the campaign season, American Arabs and Muslims relegated to pre-election "necessity" all that had occurred. It was said that the vice presidential selection of Sen. Joseph Biden, who once famously proclaimed "I am a Zionist," was made only to placate the Israeli lobby when Hillary Clinton failed to garner the nomination. Once he finally became president though, Obama would remember his roots, his friends, and take a principled stand on civil liberties while ushering in a new era of American foreign policy. After Nov. 4, they were still found scratching their heads. Rahm Emanuel In his first executive appointment as president-elect, Obama chose Chicago congressmen Rahm Emanuel to be his chief of staff. In case there was any question as to who claimed him as one of their own, the headline in the Israeli paper Haaretz (6 Nov. 2008)said it all: Obama's first pick: Israeli Rahm Emanuel as chief of staff. The vulgar and boorish Rahm is son of Benjamin Emanuel, former arms smuggler to Irgun, a pre-Israel terrorist group which carried out numerous attacks on Palestinian civilians in addition to the 1946 bombing of Jerusalem's King David Hotel. His statement to Ma'ariv above remains consistent with Zionism's historically racist overtones. As many have since come to learn, Rahm Emanuel left the U.S. during the 1991 Gulf War for Israel. There he became a civilian volunteer responsible for servicing military vehicles near occupied southern Lebanon. As chronicled by Ali Abunimah in the Electronic Intifada, Emanuel has a track record on Israel well to the right of George Bush. This includes signing a 2003 letter justifying Israel's policy of political assassinations and amazingly criticizing Bush for not supporting Israel enough. After throwing his weight behind a resolution backing the country's vicious bombing of Lebanon in the summer of 2006, Rahm called on his own government to cancel a planned speech to Congress by Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki because he had condemned Israel's actions. There are conflicting reports as to whether Emanuel is a dual American-Israeli citizen (Haaretz evidently thinks so). That, however, is far less important than Emanuel's dual loyalty. As one of the most powerful positions in the executive branch of government, the chief of staff has the ability to control access to the Oval Office and play a key advisory role on policy matters. Emanuel has already demonstrated he places Israel's interests on par or above that of the U.S., as he did in opposition to the proposed 2006 Dubai Ports deal, claiming it could harm Israel. Emanuel will not be the only one in an Obama administration exhibiting dual loyalties. Dennis Ross Another is likely to be Dennis Ross, former Middle East envoy and negotiator under President Clinton. Since then, he has been a fellow at the AIPAC-affiliated Washington Institute for Near East Policy and chairman of the Jerusalem-based think tank, the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute. It was Ross, acting as ostensible honest broker at the December 2000 Camp David Summit, who placed the blame for its failure on the Palestinians. He conveniently neglected to mention that Israel's desired annexation of large swathes of the West Bank thereby slicing it into isolated cantons, and maintaining complete control over all of Jerusalem, including Muslim holy sites, were the deal breakers. Ross was also one of the authors of Obama's fawning June speech to AIPAC in which Jerusalem (unsurprisingly) was once again promised to Israel. Many suspect Ross aspires to take charge of the Iran portfolio at the State Department under President Obama. Eric Holder Of less than stellar repute is Eric Holder, former deputy attorney general under President Clinton and current Obama legal advisor. His name is being floated as a candidate for attorney general. Holder was instrumental in orchestrating the pardon of Marc Rich in the waning hours of the Clinton presidency. Rich, indicated on charges of tax evasion and cutting oil deals with Iran during the hostage crisis, was once on the U.S. 10 Most Wanted list. He was also financier of several projects in Israel, which caused then Jerusalem mayor Ehud Olmert to remark, "Israel owes him". It remains to be seen whether Holder's role in the payback will preclude him from becoming attorney general. Hillary Clinton? Joe Lieberman? Based on the latest reports, it appears that Hillary Clinton has been offered the position of secretary of state [Alas yes and she has accepted. ed]. It also seems that Sen. Joseph Lieberman, at Obama's behest, will be allowed to remain within the Democratic caucus and maintain his chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee. Their reputation as hawks on Middle Eastern affairs needs little elaboration. Neither president nor country can be well served when those with dual loyalties are given positions of authority in the executive branch or cabinet. There were higher expectations for Obama, with many believing the new direction he pledged to take the nation and world would not be abandoned for political expediency. Alas, Arabs and Muslims under Obama's spell have finally come to their senses. After excusing his behavior for far too long, bringing Biden, "Rhambo" and Hillary on board has confirmed their worst fears about the president-elect: "change" will not be coming their way and Middle East policy will remain decidedly unbalanced. The audacity of hope, indeed. Rannie Amiri is an independent commentator on the Arab and Islamic worlds. He may be reached at: rbamiri <at> yahoo.com [ed comment: With expletive-deleted Rahm and double expletive-deleted Hillary and her triple expletive-deleted husband, Obama becomes just another space-filler in the dust-bin of history. Didn't take him long, either. So much for expletive-deleted "hope". Pessimist novelist Thomas Hardy wrote, "There's no hope. There's no hope that there's hope. There's only hope that there's hope that there's hope." If he were living today he might add one more. One could hope. -ed] --------15 of 15-------- bumperstickers --------- Hope not. Act --------- ---------------------------------- Obama - the small-change president ---------------------------------- --------------- Hillary is THEM Rahm is THEM Obama is THEM --------------- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- - 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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