|Progressive Calendar 11.06.10||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Sat, 6 Nov 2010 01:07:16 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 11.06.10 1. Peace walk 11.06 9am Cambridge MN 2. El Salvador 11.06 10am 3. Cleaners rally 11.06 11am 4. GP StP 2011 11.06 12noon 5. Palestine fair 11.06 1pm Northfield MN 6. Adoption/films 11.06 1pm 7. CUAPB 11.06 1:30pm 8. Northtown vigil 11.06 2pm 9. Corps not people 11.06 2pm 10. Contelpro 101 11.06 6pm 11. US repression 11.06 9pm 12. Health care 11.07 9:45am 13. Stillwater vigil 11.07 1pm 14. Immigration 11.07 2:30pm 15. Ecuador/coup 11.07 4pm 16. William Loren Katz -Are cruel years coming to a neighborhood near you? 17. Missy Beattie -The big universe 18. Shamus Cooke -Democrats run to the right --------1 of 18-------- From: Ken Reine <reine008 [at] umn.edu> Subject: Peace walk 11.06 9am Cambridge MN every Saturday 9AM to 9:35AM Peace walk in Cambridge - start at Hwy 95 and Fern Street --------2 of 18-------- From: Jason Stone <jason.stone [at] yahoo.com> Subject: El Salvador 11.06 10am Coffee Hour: The Legacy of International Influence in El Salvador 11/6/10 10:00am-11:45am At the Resource Center of the Americas Presented in English Don Rigo Aguirre is a community organizer from Potrerillos, El Salvador. Potrerillos is a rural hillside village near a large reservoir created by one of the countrys oldest hydroelectric dams on the Lempa River. Despite the possibility of development in the region as a result of the dam, the area has remained largely underdeveloped. Mr. Aguirre will be speaking about challenges Salvadoran people face today - water accessibility, heath care and mining among others. He will also be telling about the successes he has seen through community organizing and partnerships of solidarity with international communities and organizations including Sister Parish. Speaker: Don Rigoberto Aguirre is a community leader and organizer from the community of Potrerillos, El Salvador. Don Rigo is President of the Community Development Association in Potrerillos and a member of the county Municipal Council to promote social and economic rights. He has also served in the Association of Communities for the Development of Chalatenango (CCR), a network of over 100 communities to support organizing as well as sistering relationships in the region. Don Rigo is a key member of the Sister Parish relationship between Potrerillos and the First United Methodist Church of Decorah, Iowa. Contact Information: Christine Haider, US Regional Coordinator, Sister Parish Inc. usoffice [at] sisterparish.org Phone: (612) 326-4361 --------3 of 18-------- From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Cleaners rally 11.06 11am March for Justice in Retail Cleaning Saturday, November 6, 11:00 a.m. (Gather) Grace Trinity Community Church, 1430 West 28th Street, Minneapolis. 2:00 p.m. (Rally) Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 2730 East 31st Street, Minneapolis. March in solidarity with the workers who clean local retail establishments as they speak out against unfair wages and working conditions. Please wear red. Organized by: Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en Lucha. Endorsed by: the WAMM Immigration Committee. FFI: Visit www.ctul.net 612-332-0663 or email veronica [at] workersinterfaith.org. --------4 of 18-------- From: Jesse Mortenson <jessemortenson [at] gmail.com> Subject: GP StP 2011 11.06 12noon YOU ARE INVITED TO PLAN GOALS AND STRATEGY FOR 2011 This Saturday the 4th Congressional District Green Party will convene in St. Paul to decide goals and strategy for 2011. Please join us to help plot the path forward for greener communities in the East metro. We want input from as many supporters as possible: what should our goals be? What can we achieve in St. Paul and surrounding suburbs? If you cannot attend, please respond via e-mail to jessemortenson [at] gmail.com and your ideas will be shared at the meeting. Noon - 4pm Saturday, Nov 6 Merriam Park Library (basement meeting room) http://www.stpaul.lib.mn.us/locations/merriampark.html Food and drink will be provided. --------5 of 18-------- From: Bill McGrath <billmcgrath52 [at] gmail.com> Subject: Palestine fair 11.06 1pm Northfield MN Palestine Fair, 1 - 5 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 6, UCC Church, 300 Union Street, Northfield, MN 55057 Theater presentation of "Seven Jewish Children" Traditional Palestinian and Israeli dancing Palestinian student panel "Getting to Know Palestinian Children" by educator Mary Davies Free samples of Palestinian food Palestinian crafts for sale Activism booths, including the divestment effort of Minnesota Break the Bonds Several slide shows and other displays Sponsored by Northfielders for Justice in Palestine/Israel More information: Bill McGrath (507) 645-7660 --------6 of 18-------- From: Rebecca Chung <geminitreez [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Adoption/films 11.06 1pm Transracial Transnational ADOPTION Film Fest Saint Anthony Main NOV 6TH & 7 A FILM FEST FOR ALL PEOPLE WHO HAVE AN INTEREST IN ADOPTION, ADOPTION POLITICS, OR PEOPLE WHOSE LIVES HAVE BEEN INFLUENCED BY TRA OR TNA. 2nd Annual Minnesota Transracial Film Festival 2010 Saturday, November 6 at 1:00pm - November 7 at 10:00pm St. Anthony Main Theatre 115 Main Street SE Minneapolis, MN MNTRFF 2010 (Minnesota TransRacial Film Festival) 2nd Annual Film Festival Presented by AdopSource November 6 & 7, 2010 ...1:00pm-9:00pm St Anthony Main Theatre 115 Main Street SE Minneapolis, MN 55414 Admission: $10/day paid AdopSource member $20/day non-AdopSource members Dinner with Tammy Chu: $20 members/non-members - limited to 100 attendees. TICKETS AVAILABLE NOW! Buy yours today! http://www.mntrff.org/ Minnesota is home to one of the largest transracial and transcultural adopted communities. Because of this, MNTRFF (Minnesota Transracial Film Festival) was started to showcase the community and its rich diversity, as well as some of the emerging voices telling their story through film, words, and music. This year, AdopSource is collaborating with PBS' documentary series POV (Point of View) and presenting three new documentaries surrounding the transracial adoption experience. The first POV film is Wo Ai Ni, Mommy by Stephanie Wang-Breal. Wo Ai Ni, Mommy presents the story of Fang Sui Yong, an 8 year old girl who is adopted from China into a Long Island Jewish family. The next film in the POV series is Off and Running by Nicole Opper. Off and Running tells the story of Brooklyn teenager Avery, who is the adopted African-American child of white Jewish lesbians. She struggles over her "true" identity, the circumstances of her adoption and her estrangement from black culture. Just when it seems as if her life is unraveling, Avery decides to pick up the pieces and make sense of her identity, with inspiring results. The final POV film is In the Matter of Cha Jung Hee by Deann Borshay Liem. In the Matter of Cha Jung Hee tells the tale of a Korean adoptee's search for answers regarding the identity of the girl she had been switched with at the time of her adoption. In addition to the POV films, we are also excited to bring you Resilience by Tammy Chu and Operation Babylift: The Lost Children of Vietnam by Tammy Nguyen Lee. Resilience chronicles the story of a Korean adoptee and his birthmother who reunite after 30 years separation and embark on a path of reconciliation and understanding. Operation Babylift: The Lost Children of Vietnam details the story of the over 2,000 infants and children were airlifted from Vietnam and adopted by families around the world in 1975. We invite you to attend this two day event and enjoy these films in a theater setting. Producers Deann Borshay - "In the Matter of Cha Jung Hee," Sharese Bullock-Bailey - "Off and Running," Jared Rehberg - "Operation Baby Lift" and Tammy Chu - "Resilience" will be on hand to introduce their films and tell you why they were compelled to tell their stories. In addition, we will be hosting a dinner at the Nicollet Island Inn (located on the Mississippi River across the street from St Anthony Main Theatre) which will feature an interactive dialogue with "Resilience" filmmaker Tammy Chu, traditional Chinese Gujzung artist Jarrell Barton, a silent auction, drawings for gift cards/prizes and much more! The dinner with Tammy Chu will be held on Sunday, November 7th, and is limited to 100 attendees, so please plan accordingly. For more information, please contact Ami Nafzger at 612-501-2530 or anafzger [at] adopsource.org TICKETS AVAILABLE NOW! Buy yours today! http://www.mntrff.org/ http://www.mntrff.org/ http://www.adopsource.org/ http://www.woainimommy.com/ http://www.offandrunningthefilm.com/ http://www.mufilms.org/films/matter-of-cha-jung-hee http://www.resiliencefilm.com/ http://www.thebabylift.com/ http://www.stanthonymaintheatre.com/ http://www.nicolletislandinn.com/ --------7 of 18-------- From: Michelle Gross <mgresist [at] visi.com> Subject: CUAPB 11.06 1:30pm Meetings: Every Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Walker Church, 3104 16th Avenue South http://www.CUAPB.org Communities United Against Police Brutality 3100 16th Avenue S Minneapolis, MN 55407 Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867) --------8 of 18------- From: Vanka485 [at] aol.com Subject: Northtown vigil 11.06 2pm Peace vigil at Northtown (Old Hwy 10 & University Av), every Saturday 2-3pm --------9 of 18-------- From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Corps not people 11.06 2pm Rally: The Monahan Brothers Walked Across the Country for Democracy Saturday, November 6, 2:00 p.m. Minnesota State Capitol, Room 125, 75 Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, St. Paul. Telling audiences why he and his brother are walking across America, Laird Monahan says simply: "when I first heard about the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v Federal Election Commission on January 21, I was devastated. I was so demoralized and despondent, I almost came to tears. Then I became angry and told my wife that I couldn't sit at home any longer writing letters and signing petitions. My country was calling me back into service to defend my democracy for my children and grandchildren. She was supportive and encouraged me to "... do what you have to do."" Shortly thereafter, Laird, now 70, decided to walk from San Francisco's Golden Gate Park to the Lincoln Memorial to spread this message and talk with anyone who would listen, that the Supreme Court decision was a great threat to democracy by allowing corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money from their treasuries in elections for or against candidates and to dominate the political process. "Corporate Personhood is the defining issue of our time. All other social agenda are held captive to the power of money. Corporations have preempted the debate." Laird says. After sharing his thoughts with his brother, Robin, 67, enthusiastically joined in the plan. So, with the blessing of their wives and families they drove from their homes in Minnesota and, set off on their cross-country walk on May 16, after dipping their feet in the Pacific Ocean. Five months later, after reaching their goal at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC, they are amazed and appreciative of hospitality from strangers, all manner of opportunities to speak at events and talk with local community members and officials along the way, and meet, sometimes on very short notice, with media. This walk, a result of their patriotic passions, has aroused an activist in each of them that here-to-fore was expressed only by putting a sign in their yard promoting their favorite candidate. And now they have set an ambitious goal for themselves; that of having every municipal governing body in Minnesota sign a resolution supporting a Constitutional Amendment to Abolish Corporate Personhood. They hope to accomplish this within the next two years, in time for the next Presidential election. It is hoped that the effort of the Monahan brothers will be duplicated in other states across the country. Endorsed by: WAMM. FFI and Blog: Visit www.lairdandrobin.org . --------10 of 18-------- From: "Jaime (Brian) Hokanson" <bjhokanson [at] gmail.com> Subject: Contelpro 101 11.06 6pm Join MARS <http://radspacetc.wordpress.com/> for a screening of the new documentary "COINTELPRO 101" and Q&A with former political prisoners, Claude Marks and Ricardo Jiménez, including discussion of current campaigns to free political prisoners and to fight continuing state repression. Saturday, Nov. 6th 5:00pm @ U of M, West Bank, Social Science Tower - room 1114 267 19th Ave. S., Mpls. map here: http://www1.umn.edu/twincities/maps/SocSci/ See a trailer and more information about the documentary here: http://www.freedomarchives.org/Cointelpro.html About MARS: MARS (MPLS Autonomous Radical Space) is an anti-authoritarian collective opening a new space in south Minneapolis by early 2011. To strengthen cultures of resistance, we plan to create a social and political activity hub offering meeting space, a radical library/infoshop, independent mediamaking center, event space, regular workshops and skillshares, and more. In our organizing, we aim to actively challenge heteropatriachy, white supremacy, economic injustice, and other forms of domination and oppression. Visit our website at radspacetc.wordpress.com.<http://radspacetc.wordpress.com/> About COINTELPRO 101: COINTELPRO may not be a well-understood acronym but its meaning and continuing impact are absolutely central to understanding the government's wars and repression against progressive movements. COINTELPRO represents the state's strategy to prevent movements and communities from overturning white supremacy and creating racial justice. COINTELPRO is both a formal program of the FBI and a term frequently used to describe a conspiracy among government agencies - local, state, and federal - to destroy movements for self-determination and liberation for Black, Brown, Asian, and Indigenous struggles, as well as mount an institutionalized attack against allies of these movements and other progressive organizations. COINTELPRO 101 is an educational film that will open the door to understanding this history. This documentary will introduce viewers new to this history to the basics and direct them to other resources where they can learn more. The intended audiences are the generations that did not experience the social justice movements of the sixties and seventies. --------11 of 18-------- From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net> Subject: Repressing revolution 11.06 9pm "Repressing Revolution at Home and Abroad" Twin Cities area anti-war activists recently raided and subpoenaed by the FBI to a grand jury share their experiences. National Lawyers Guild members describe some of the context of the raids and the impending grand jury in Chicago. (October, 2010) MTN 17 viewers: "Our World In Depth" cablecasts on Minneapolis Television Network (MTN) Channel 17 on Saturdays at 9pm and Tuesdays at 8am, after DemocracyNow! Households with basic cable may watch. Sat, 11/6, 9pm and Tues, 11/9, 8am "Repressing Revolution at Home and Abroad" --------12 of 18-------- From: Joel Albers <joel [at] uhcan-mn.org> Subject: Health care 11.07 9:45am I will be giving a critique of the new federal health care legislation at the Trinity's Adult Forum on November 7th at 9:45 a.m. It is in the Holversten Augsburg Chapel in the Aileen Cole Room, at Augsberg College 2211 Riverside Ave., in the Foss Center Atrium which is the last room right near the east entry. Joel Albers Clinical Pharmacist, Health Economics Researcher Universal Health Care Action Network - MN www.uhcan-mn.org --------13 of 18------- From: scot b <earthmannow [at] comcast.net> Subject: Stillwater vigil 11.07 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 <http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/>http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/ For more information you could call 651 275 0247 or 651 999 - 9560 --------14 of 18-------- From: Jason Stone <jason.stone [at] yahoo.com> Subject: Immigration 11.07 2:30pm Action: Remembering Those Who Have Died in Detention - 11/7/10 IN REMEMBRANCE: REMEMBERING THOSE WHO HAVE DIED IN DETENTION Interfaith Coalition on Immigration Monthly Faith Action for Immigrant Detainees Sunday, November 7, 2010, 2:30-3:00pm Ramsey County Adult Detention Center 425 Grove Street, St. Paul MN Host: Holy Trinity Lutheran Church The November vigil will honor the memory all who have died while in our immigrant detention system, casualties of an unjust system. Join community members of faith and conscience who advocate for immigrants and immigration reform as we gather to show support to those detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) at the Ramsey County Detention Center. Help call attention to our nations broken immigration system and the need for immigration reform now. The Center is on Grove Street, 2 blocks north of East Seventh Street, at Lafayette Road, on St. Pauls East Side. (Take the Seventh Street exit from east-bound Interstate 94 and proceed east to Lafayette Road, then turn left onto Lafayette; free parking in lot in front of detention center.) Sponsored by: Jewish Community Action, Edina Community Lutheran Church, El Milagro/The Miracle Lutheran Church, Faith Mennonite Church, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Interfaith Center for Workers Justice, Interfaith Coalition on Immigration, Immigration Task Force for MN UCC Conference, Misseo Dei Community, Resource Center of the Americas, St. Luke Presbyterian Church, Advocates for Human Rights, Justice Commission of the Sisters of St. Joseph, WAMM Immigration Committee --------15 of 18-------- From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Ecuador/coup 11.07 4pm Attempted Coup in Ecuador: What next for Latin America? Sunday, November 7, 4:00 p.m. Walker Community Church, 3104 16th Avenue South, Minneapolis. While the U.S. media tried to deny it, in Latin America people were clear that the events of September 30 in Ecuador, were an attempted coup against President Rafael Correa. He was held captive by national police, who waged a long gun battle with forces trying to free him, and they discussed assassinating him. This attempt brings to mind the brutal coup last year in Honduras, and the attempted coups in Venezuela and Bolivia earlier. Come join in a discussion of these events and their meaning for the people of the U.S. and Latin America. Speakers include: Silvia Ontaneda, Consul of Ecuador to Minnesota; Marcial Castro, Hands Off Honduras Coalition; John Peterson, Hands Off Venezuela. Organized by: Hands Off Honduras Coalition. Endorsed by: WAMM. FFI: Email handsoffhonduras [at] gmail.com, call 612-702-5637, or visit hondurasfreedom.blogspot.com. [Obama is no better than Bush - both for LatAm dictatorships & exploitation by US mega corporations. Same old corruption. -ed] --------16 of 18-------- The Cry of the Poor Must be Heard Are Cruel Years Coming to a Neighborhood Near You? By WILLIAM LOREN KATZ CounterPunch November 5 - 7, 2010 In 2010, with the blessing of a five to four Supreme Court decision, unlimited money from anonymous corporate sources was allowed to select candidates and call the political tune. It is hardly surprising the party best able to tap these funds scored major gains. While suspicious of repentant witches, the public fell for a heroic narrative of capitalist individualism gallantly charging into the 20th century bearing gifts for all. Rand Paul, the clearest voice of the victorious Republican Party, championed the tried and true values of American individualism, freedom and capitalism of this earlier time. Politicians often express a warm, fuzzy adulation for "the good old days," a past that never was. Many are informed by a broken nostalgia-meter or an ability to "misremember". In 1980 Presidential candidate Ronald Reagan fondly recalled the 1920s and 1930s when "we did not have a racial problem". Others painfully recalled a south of lynching, legal discrimination and disenfranchisement, and a North of de facto discrimination, anti-Black riots, and white Major League baseball. Paul was correct that this was an era of few government efforts to regulate business - and he might have mentioned there were no pure food and drug laws, no income taxes, no votes for women, and a U.S. Senate called "the Millionaires' Club". He also did not discuss how "robber barons" amassed fortunes with scant regard to legalities, how government protection of "free enterprise" made corporations masters of the political and economic landscape, how working families lived in misery, and how middle class aspirations rarely flowered. In 2000 when George H.W. Bush came to power (by a five to four Supreme Court vote) he also looked nostalgically at this era. Back then the wealthy patrons Bush called his "base" had no taxes to worry about, and the slogan was "let the buyer beware". When the President moved to privatize Social Security, my wife, Professor Laurie Lehman, and I thought it was time to remind everyone what life was like for real people in the early 20th century. We put together a collection of 22 autobiographical writings by ordinary people of the day - a coal miner, sweatshop operator, women union organizer, policeman, farming wife, shoe-shine boy, Irish, Jewish, Chinese, Japanese and Mexican immigrants and Black sharecroppers. Casting the book from their standpoint, we called it The Cruel Years: American Voices at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century. My Introduction filled in the background sounds and stress of an unlamented era for most. "Hearing the words of these people is a requirement for a truly democratic society," wrote Howard Zinn in his Preface. At the outset of the Bush years, we wanted to warn of what it would mean to repeal the safety net, leave banks and corporations to regulate themselves, allow an elite to guide policy, and what it meant to let women and the working and middle classes to fall back into an abyss. You certainly wouldn't want to live there today! Politicians feel free to offer their cuddly fictions of a century that produced happiness for only a few. But when the rosy tale of a Rand Paul persuades voters that this was the best of times, we are in trouble. Before speeding backwards, people need to turn around and look where they are headed. The free enterprise system that climbed into 20th century brought a gloomy inequality. One per cent of the population owned as much as the other 99%. A small elite sitting on the boards of dozens of companies controlled 40% of U.S. industry and their monopolies and trusts dominated economic life. The media surrendered early. In 1900 the New York Times proclaimed "Millionaires will be commonplace and the country will be better for them, better for their wealth, better for the good they will do in giving employment to labor in the industries which produce their fortunes". The wealthy justified their comfortable catbird seat. In Chicago Marshall Field made $600 an hour and paid his retail store clerks three to five dollars a week after three years of satisfactory service. Chauncey Depew's steel mill laborers worked from six in the morning to six in the evening seven days a week in 115 degrees for $1.25 a day. Andrew Carnegie spoke for this elite: "We accept and welcome great inequality of wealth and environment, the concentration of business, industrial and commercial in the hands of the few, as not only being beneficial, but essential for the human race". Legislators, presidents, and judges bowed to the affluent. Bankers Magazine in 1901 announced "the business of the country . . . is gradually subverting the power of the politician, and rendering him subservient to its purposes". Tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt boasted he could "buy up any politician" and claimed reformers "the most purchasable". "We hire the law by the year," claimed a railroad magnate. The 14th Amendment, designed to protect the citizenship rights of former slaves, was altered by the Supreme Court to mainly protect corporations as "persons". This was the high Court's first twist of the 14th Amendment. The Sherman Act of 1890, passed to curb monopolies, instead was used to stop strikes and jail union leaders. Government officials dutifully identified corporations with the public good. When choking industrial smog blanked Chicago, a leading politician said smoke was beneficial to children's lungs. Governments saw no need to protect workers from unsafe working conditions that took more than a million lives a year, a higher number than any country which kept records. President Benjamin Harrison noted in 1892, "American workmen are subjected to peril of life and limb as great as a soldier in time of war". A Texas court made this ruling, "as long as men must earn a living for their families and themselves by labor, there must be . . . oppression of the working classes". President Grover Cleveland vetoed a bill to hand seed grain to Texas farmers stricken by a drought, saying "it weakens the sturdiness of our national character" - and instead gave rich bondholders $45 million more than the value of their bonds. Republican and Democratic Presidents used the Army to crush nationwide strikes. Government welfare for the upper class had these consequences: widespread poverty, child labor, and homeless families. Homeless children (100,000 in New York alone) scrounged for food, searched for shelter, and begged. Employers at mills and mines preferred to hire children since at 50 cents a week, they were the cheapest. Ministers stepped forth to claim work kept children out of trouble. Asa G. Candlers, founder of Coca Cola, said, "The most beautiful sight that we see is the child at labor; as early as he may be at labor the more beautiful, and the most useful does his life get to be". Working children suffered an accident rate in factories double the adult rate. They saw matters differently. At a Philadelphia textile plant boys and girls unfurled banners reading, "We Want to Go To School!". "More Schools, Less Hospitals!" The cry of the poor, of mothers and children and of a neglected middle class, has to be heard. We do not have to follow the modern disciples of Ayn Rand back to a century that produced enormous wealth for a few, and saddled painful economic and social conditions on the body politic. We owe those whose efforts built this country a truthful recounting of their pain, sacrifice and enduring contribution. We owe their hard-working descendants a more just share of the wealth they create. And we should get cracking. William Loren Katz is the author of forty U.S. history books and editor of another 212, and his website is WILLIAMLKATZ.COM This essay is based on The Cruel Years [Beacon Press, 2002] --------17 of 18-------- Look to the Stars! The Big Universe By MISSY BEATTIE CounterPunch November 5 - 7, 2010 I received three robocalls from Barack Obama in the days before the election. I listened to the first and cut short the second and third. The President implored me to vote because so much was at stake. I had a brief conversation with the man who phoned on behalf of Sen. Barbara Mikulski and Rep. John Sarbanes. He wanted to know if the two could count on me. I explained that I've called their offices many times to ask that they stop funding war. And that I've always received the obligatory acknowledgment, thanking me for my input. Then, I told the caller, "But they continue to vote for war, so, no, since I can't count on them, they cannot count on me". War wasn't an issue in this election. Despite the WikiLeaks documents, despite the number of military funerals, the brain injured, the climbing suicide rate among veterans, the trillions spent on the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, and despite the deaths of Iraqi and Afghan civilians, including children, there is no war debate. It seems war is the concern of antiwar activists, families of troops, and the people who live in the countries we've destroyed or are threatening to attack. As I watched the election returns, I learned that on the ballot in Denver, Colorado was an initiative to create an Extraterrestrial Affairs Commissions with the following mission statement: It's a BIG universe but we need to share it with others who are not from Earth. Our grand mission is dedicated to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of human beings in relation to interactions with extraterrestrial beings, and to creating peaceful, harmonious, and mutually beneficial relationships between all beings in the universe. The results of the election are clear. Angry voters changed the trajectories of many politicians who didn't represent their interests. But what these voters don't understand is that they've elected to Congress people who still will not represent their interests. Those who wear the honorific of senator or representative are influenced by their corporate masters, not their constituents. And while Congressmen and women hail from neighborhoods throughout the US, their goal is to create mutually beneficial relationships with Wall Street and establishments within the D.C. Beltway. The Denver initiative for an Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission was overwhelmingly defeated. Earthlings there didn't want to be ridiculed by the rest of the world. Strange, isn't it? Because our reputation couldn't be worse. Americans have a legitimate right to be angry. The problems confronting us - loss of Constitutional rights, economic disaster, joblessness, poverty, foreclosures, healthcare costs, the worst environmental catastrophe in our history, and the war of terror that's been expanded to Pakistan and Yemen - have not been addressed. Maybe we should examine the Denver initiative, taking seriously the mission statement. But, first, we might make the effort here on our own planet to ensure "the health, safety and welfare of human beings" before we attempt peaceful negotiation with any life form that might possibly exist outside Earth. And we, also, should consider the strong probability that if life does exist beyond what we assume to know, the extraterrestrials could be sapient beings - much more evolved than we. Missy Beattie lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Her email address is missybeat [at] gmail.com. --------18 of 18-------- Following the Money Democrats Run to the Right By SHAMUS COOKE CounterPunch November 5 - 7, 2010 On the eve of the Republican-dominated mid-term election, working people were told to vote Democrat to prevent a "truly dangerous" Republican party from taking power. There is an element of truth in this: the Republican Party has been sprinting to the far right for decades, to the point where they are incapable of speaking sensibly about political issues. But in a close second place in this rightward scramble are the Democrats, who've spent decades racing into the arms of the corporations that dominate both political parties unchallenged. This mad dash to the right did not stop at the midterm election; the Democrats are preparing to unleash their hidden second wind, kept from public view until after the elections. The first step to the right occurred in the commentary over the lost elections. The Democrat's fake analysis about why they lost will push them to "correct their mistakes". Contrary to all evidence or common sense, the Democrats now claim that their agenda was "too progressive" while in power, to be fixed by shifting even further to the right. In effect, the Democrats are now agreeing with the Tea Party's analysis of the Obama Administration. Democratic Senator from Indiana Evan Bayh explained this false narrative in The New York Times, in his op-ed entitled Where Do Democrats Go Next? His answer could only be interpreted as to the right: "It is clear that Democrats over-interpreted our [progressive] mandate. Talk of a 'political realignment' and a 'new progressive era' proved wishful thinking." (November 3, 2010). Bayh suggests that the Democrats adopt numerous Republican policies to compensate, such as cuts to both corporate taxes and Social Security. Obama wasted no time in agreeing with the Tea Party in his concession speech. He had "lost contact" with the American people, meaning, that he had acted too progressively. To compensate, Obama implied a move to the right, by serving corporations even more obediently: "I've got to take responsibility in terms of making sure that I make clear to the business community [Wall Street and corporate America], as well as to the country, that the most important thing we can do is to boost and encourage our business sector...," [Up Obama's butt. -ed] Obama also promised to "negotiate" with Republicans over the Bush tax cuts, energy, and education policies. Social Security is an additional area that Obama has agreed to negotiate with the Republicans. Obama's bipartisan Deficit Reduction Commission purposely waited for the midterm elections to end before it announced its recommendations, which will reportedly include cuts to Social Security and Medicare. Both Republicans and Democrats are set to unite in attacking Social Security, in the same way they have united over the Bush/Obama wars; the Bush/Obama bank bailouts; the Bush/Obama destruction of civil liberties; the Bush/Obama education policy; and the Bush/Obama general favoritism of corporations over working people. Both parties agree that the U.S. deficit is a more severe problem than creating jobs. They will thus unite to reduce the deficit by cutting or destroying valuable social services to working people, including Social Security, Medicare, public education, and other federally funded programs. This is their only option, since both parties agree that raising taxes on the rich and corporations or cutting military spending are "off the table". These bi-partisan, anti-worker policies will further expose the Democrats as being extensions of the very wealthy and the corporations. Working people will refuse to vote for this "lesser evil" in the future and demand that their labor and community groups move towards political independence. Shamus Cooke is a social service worker, trade unionist, and writer for Workers Action. He can be reached at shamuscook [at] gmail.com [And how much longer will lesser-evil liberal Dems take it and take it and take it and get nothing in return? How much evil has to happen before they get it? Alas, probably much much more, and they will be culpable for it. They are morally and spiritually empty, but refuse to see or admit it. And so the rest of us are stuck in this deepening hell. Thanks. -ed] ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- - 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 vote third party for president for congress for governor now and forever Socialism YES Capitalism NO To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8 Research almost any topic raised here at: CounterPunch http://counterpunch.org Dissident Voice http://dissidentvoice.org Common Dreams http://commondreams.org Once you're there, do a search on your topic, eg obama drones
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