As the war in Iraq finally draws to a close, here is a quick quiz. Who said the following, and when, and and where?
There is no proof that Iraq represents an immediate or imminent threat to the United States. . . . The Administration has refused to provide the Congress with credible intelligence that proves that Iraq is a serious threat to the United States, and is continuing to develop chemical and biological and nuclear weapons.
The Iraq regime has never attacked nor does it have the capability to attack the United States.
There is no credible intelligence that connects Iraq to the events of 9/11 or to participation in those events by assisting Al Qaida. . . . There is no connection between Iraq and the events of 9/11. . . . There is no credible evidence that Iraq harbored those who were responsible for planning, authorizing or committing the attacks of 9/11.
There is no credible evidence that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction.
Congress has not been provided with any credible information, which proves that Iraq has provided international terrorists with weapons of mass destruction.
Unilateral action against Iraq will cost the United States the support of the world community.
So, who said this? Me? No -- I wish it were me. It was Congressman Dennis Kucinich.
And when? On October 2, 2002, six months before the War in Iraq began.
And where? On the Floor of the House, and in a letter to his colleagues in Congress.
Was it clarity? No, it was more than clarity. It was almost clairvoyance.
At a time when almost every public figure in America was hoodwinked and bamboozled by Bush Administration propaganda, Dennis Kucinich was not. Dennis Kucinich saw the truth, and he said the truth. And Dennis followed through, doggedly opposing the war in Iraq from alpha to omega.
Congress is full of replaceable parts. But Dennis Kucinich is not one of them. Dennis is unique.
Now Dennis Kucinich is in the toughest race of his 15-year career in Congress. The Republicans have tried to gerrymander him out of Congress. He needs your help, and he needs it now.
The Koch Brothers are not going to help Dennis Kucinich. Karl Rove is not going to help Dennis Kucinich. Fox News is not going to help Dennis Kucinich.
Its up to us.
Before midnight on December 31, please make a contribution to Dennis Kucinichs campaign.
Friday, December 30th, 2011
On this day, December 30th, in 1936 -- 75 years ago today -- hundreds of workers at the General Motors factories in Flint, Michigan, took over the facilities and occupied them for 44 days. My uncle was one of them.
The workers couldn't take the abuse from the corporation any longer. Their working conditions, the slave wages, no vacation, no health care, no overtime -- it was do as you're told or get tossed onto the curb.
So on the day before New Year's Eve, emboldened by the recent re-election of Franklin Roosevelt, they sat down on the job and refused to leave.
They began their Occupation in the dead of winter. GM cut off the heat and water to the buildings. The police tried to raid the factories several times, to no avail. Even the National Guard was called in.
But the workers held their ground, and after 44 days, the corporation gave in and recognized the UAW as the representative of the workers. It was a monumental historical moment as no other major company had ever been brought to its knees by their employees. Workers were given a raise to a dollar an hour -- and successful strikes and occupations spread like wildfire across the country. Finally, the working class would be able to do things like own their own homes, send their children to college, have time off and see a doctor without having to worry about paying. In Flint, Michigan, on this day in 1936, the middle class was born.
But 75 years later, the owners and elites have regained all power and control. I can think of no better way for us to honor the original Occupiers than by all of us participating in the Occupy Wall Street movement in whatever form that takes in each of our towns. We need direct action all winter long if we are to prevail. You can start your own Occupy group in your neighborhood or school or with just your friends. Speak out against economic injustice at every chance you get. Stop the bank from evicting the family down the block. Move your checking and credit card to a community bank or credit union. Place a sign in your yard -- and get your neighbors to do it also -- that says, "WE ARE THE 99%." (You can download signs here and here.)
Do something, anything, but don't remain silent. Not now. This is the moment. It won't come again.
75 years ago today, in Flint, Michigan, the people said they'd had enough and occupied the factories until they won. What is stopping us now? The rich have one plan: bleed everyone dry. Can anyone, in good conscience, be a bystander to this?
My uncle wasn't, and because of what he and others did, I got to grow up without having to worry about a roof over my heads or medical bills or a decent life. And all that was provided by my dad who built spark plugs on a GM assembly line.
Let's each of us double our efforts to raise a ruckus, Occupy Everywhere, and get creative as we throw a major nonviolent wrench into this system of Greed. Let's make the politicians running for office in 2012 quake in their boots if they refuse to tax the rich, regulate Wall Street and do whatever we the people tell them to do.
A person who lives near this view asked me for a copy of this shot, and before it goes back in my files, let's remember summer for a minute
Florida Keys, Marathon, Sunset Park
my finally perfected version, I work my recipes til I get the taste the way I like it, and then I rewrite the recipe for my private cookbook
2T olive oil
8 cloves garlic, sliced
1/2 small onion chopped
1 can drained flat anchovy fillets
1/2 t crushed red pepper flakes
small can black olives, no pits, coarsely chopped
1 can artichoke hearts, drained, quartered
3 1/2 T capers
1 32 oz can chunky style crushed tomatoes
1 small can of tomatoes with green chilies.
a few grinds of black pepper
1/4 cup of any parsley, chopped, 4-5 leaves of basil, chopped
1 pound of angel hair pasta
Crusty Bread for mopping
Heat oil over med heat add garlic, onion and anchovies. MEDIUM slow heat. Let the anchovies dissolve into the oil, and all of it to become fragrant and limp. Add olives capers tomatoes black pepper red pepper and parsley.
This sauce will have a mild "kick", leave off either the red pepper flakes or the tomatoes with chile (substitute normal chunky tomatoes) if you don't want that little kick. But don't leave off both.
Simmer 8-10 minutes. Stir in Artichoke hearts, heat.
Serve over Angel hair pasta, al dente, that has been tossed with the chopped basil leaves.
Pass bread and cheese at the table.
Serve with a simple salad of Boston lettuce, torn, with a vinaigrette and herbs.
Kent Sorenson is switching sides and jumping ship.
(FWIW, of course)
My grandson showed this to me and I was hooked
"My Declaration of War on Christmas"
I don't usually watch Today or any American TV because my reports appear on the British Broadcasting Corporation, a network run by highly-educated America-haters.
But there I was, last Friday, in this hotel room in Atlanta, a city pretending there's no Depression, chewing my complimentary morning donut, and Today is telling us about the "new face of American poverty."
"More than 49 million Americans now live below the poverty line and a number of them like the family you're about to meet propelled into bankruptcy by a one-two punch of job loss and a catastrophic health crisis."
Wow! US television finally grabs the Big Issue.
This white suburban family called the Kleins have lost their home to eviction. They're completely broke, because one of their kids got a tumor in her face. They have no insurance so the $100,000-plus medical bills wiped them out.
They live with neighbors and they hoped to at least get their kids a couple pair of underwear as a Christmas gift.
But if you think America doesn't give a crap about the cancerous growth of poverty, just keep watching: The Today reporter takes the white family to WalMart where the bubbly journalist gushes, "The wonderful people of WalMart opened up their stores and their aisles and their hearts. The store is your oyster, Michelle!"
Then some WalMartian PR person tells the bankrupt mom to address the issue of long-term unemployment, "Let's go shopping!"
And you thought America was cold-hearted, just because the Republicans tried to block unemployment insurance this Christmas for three million families.
for how the shopping trip went down go to:
I just found it in my archives and had forgotten I took it.
It's not what I usually photograph with any recognizable success, so I thought I'd show you.
Pvt. Manning and Imperative of Truth by Ray McGovern
A protester against Pvt. Bradley Manning's prosecution
When I was asked to speak at Saturday's rally at Fort Meade in support of Pvt. Bradley Manning, I wondered how I might provide some context around what Manning is alleged to have done.
(In my talk, so as not to think I had to insert the word "alleged" into every sentence, I asked for unanimous consent to using the indicative rather than the subjunctive mood.)
What jumped into my mind was the letter Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote from the Birmingham City jail in April 1963, from which I remembered this:
"Like a boil that can never be cured as long as it is covered up, but must be opened with all its pus-flowing ugliness to the natural medicines of air and light, injustice must likewise be exposed, with all of the tension its exposing creates, to the light of human conscience and the air of national opinion before it can be cured."
I suggested that this is precisely what Bradley Manning did when he saw the need to uncover war crimes like the indiscriminate murder of civilians and torture he witnessed in Baghdad and read about in cables.
What he had become witness to was the inevitable result of aggressive war, which the post-World War II Nuremberg Tribunal called the "supreme international crime," differing from other war crimes only inasmuch as it contains within itself the "accumulated evil of the whole." Was he to obey orders to keep his mouth shut? Or was he to follow his conscience and lance this ugly boil of accumulated evil?
What I especially admire in Bradley Manning is this: his ability, at the age of 22, to discern that there can be a hierarchy of -- sometimes conflicting -- values, and that from a moral standpoint some values dwarf others in importance.
for all of it go here:
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