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Now here's a book that's meant to be used: "Beautiful Trouble: A Toolbox for Revolution" edited by Andrew Boyd and Dave Oswald Mitchell. The subtitle should be "Try this at home -- but innovate!" Instead it's "From the people who brought you the Yes Men, Billionaires Against Bush, etc."
Beautiful Trouble is a terrific addition to Gene Sharp's catalog of nonviolent tactics, less comprehensive, more up-to-date, more U.S.-centric, and focused on the artistic and the entertaining. When someone whines about what they can possibly do if it's really true that voting won't fix everything, hand them this book. When someone proposes violence as the only serious option available, hand them this book.
Here is a guide to activism that focuses on the serious moral case for fundamental change and on making it fun as hell. Here is a sophisticated tool for shaping strategies that are both uncompromising and welcoming of newcomers.
The book is divided into five sections: Tactics, Principles, Theories, Case Studies, and Practitioners. The section on Tactics is far and away the best, with some of the inspiring tactics further developed in the case studies. While the book looks like a reference designed to be searched as needed like an encyclopedia (tons of pull quotes and text in cute little boxes, as if laid out for someone with a four-second attention span) it actually reads very well as a book if you focus on the largest font size and just read it straight through.
Long time activists may find more and more of the material to be familiar as the book progresses, but it is a book that practices what it preaches. It is open to brand new participants in government of, by, and for the people as well as to those who've been trying to get it right for many years. For the most part, even the familiar is so well presented and contextualized that people are likely to find new insights in what they thought they already knew.
We always wonder how to welcome war criminals and robber barons to town. Do we protest? Do we try to participate in their public events in an approved manner? Do we hold up posters silently without interrupting? "Beautiful Trouble" is packed with great approaches to this and other common scenarios. For example, in 2006, Rainforest Action greeted the CEO of General Motors at the Los Angeles Auto Show by pretending to be emcees, thanking the man for the speech he'd just given about GM's commitment to the environment, and unfurling a giant pledge for him to sign putting his promises in writing. He then had two bad choices. He chose to refuse to sign, and the media ran with that story.
Other great tactics explored include "nonviolent search and seizure," or the theatrical attempt to liberate secret documents to which the public has a right. Governments are presented with the option of looking secretive and suspicious or exposing what they're up to and revealing themselves as corrupt and destructive. Successful uses of this tactic are recounted.
Then there's the case of families setting up a childcare center in the office of a public housing official until provided with other means of childcare. With each such idea, others will appear in the reader's mind. Why not move a school into the office of a weapons profiteer? Why not move a library into the office of a war-funding, banker-bailing-out Congress member? Such variations gain and lose various advantages that this book can help an organizer sort through.
Or there's the case of the teddy bear catapult. When officials lock themselves inside a fortress (at Camp David, or in Chicago, or anywhere else), a catapult can be a means of sending them a message in which the main message is in fact the medium.
Other tactics, such as the general strike, are extremely difficult, or -- as with a "debt strike" -- have yet to be successfully pulled off.
"Beautiful Trouble" is not just a list of colorful actions. It analyzes the pros and cons, principles involved, potential dangers, and insidious tendencies. It gives detailed advice on how a tactic should be used most effectively. It can build your movement more, for example, to not just shout people down but to do so very politely under the banner of a Public Filibuster, insisting on upholding their rights as well as your own.
"Beautiful Trouble" includes an excellent rejection of "diversity of tactics" -- which can become "code for 'anything goes'," as well as an explanation of the power and superior success rate of disciplined strategic nonviolence.
Rather than pretending to list all available types of approaches, the authors (dozens of them, activists all) seek to guide the reader toward a model for inventing and generating new approaches. Part of theatrical activism, of course, involves tricking the corporate media into covering positions toward which its owners are fundamentally opposed or -- at best -- indifferent. Even the best of tactics can lose that power simply by having been used before.
The Theories section of the book may be the weakest, as a lot of it amounts to Cliff's Notes versions of well-known intellectuals. And the Practitioners section at the end, which really is just a list of activist groups, leaves much to be desired.
It's also stunning that an up-to-the-minute book drawing heavily on the Occupy movement and other events of recent years and months contains so many examples of opposing George W. Bush, while Barack Obama gets a single mention -- which comes in an account of the Tar Sands protests in which the wisdom of not polarizing against Obama is explained to us. Oh, and there's one other mention praising Obama's campaign messaging.
"Beautiful Trouble" discusses the Overton Window and the benefit of pushing for what you really want or even more. It even offers the example of pushing for single payer if what you want is a "public option." But groups that did that are missing from the book, while praise goes repeatedly to organizations that blatantly violated that specific advice. "Beautiful Trouble" even declares the healthcare legislation that failed to include the "public option" a victory.
An account of "Billionaires for Bush" is followed by an account of misguided (by the book's own advice) healthcare groups "succeeding" in finding some target other than the Democrats in power in Washington to protest, which is followed by another account of random protesters of Bush. I was a big fan and participant in Billionaires for Bush, but when -- in 2008 -- I asked them why in the world they were shutting down rather than evolving into Oligarchs for Obama they never gave me a straight answer.
Oddly missing from the book's advice for activist organizing is any warning about the corrupting influence of large, well-funded groups or of partisan politics.
Note that this is a book that dares to go after capitalism and many basic assumptions in our society, a society in which most people already condemn elected officials of both major political parties, so it would be at least a challenge to make a case that criticizing Obama's corruption would have somehow closed the book off to many of its potential readers.
I would also quibble with the happiness of the book's introduction which says:
"The realization is rippling through the ranks that, if deployed thoughtfully, our pranks, stunts, flash mobs and encampments can bring about real shifts in the balance of power."
But the same introduction also says:
"Through the last decade, though we've lost ground on climate, civil liberties, labor rights, and so many other fronts, we've also seen incredible flourishing of creativity and tactical innovation in our movements, both in the streets and online."
That is an extremely odd sentence. Logically, it could be rewritten:
"Through the last decade, though we've seen incredible flourishing of creativity and tactical innovation in our movements, both in the streets and online, we've also lost ground on climate, civil liberties, labor rights, and so many other fronts."
We are losing. We are losing badly and we're pretty darn close to Game Over. And yet we have seen small victories and hints at the possibility of larger ones. We have learned what tactics work better than others. In my view, there's not much more useful that anyone could do than to learn from this book, and with independent analysis, as the authors themselves would recommend, go forth and do likewise.
As I traveled this day to Chicago to bear witness to and against an organization wholly culpable for the murder of countless and uncounted persons in the name of war, undaunted power and greed, I recalled words which Bobby Kennedy spoke to the world moments before he too was murdered. Within moments of his death, then presidential candidate Robert Kennedy gave an interview in which he gave extraordinary voice to ordinary people whom the United States was killing in Viet Nam, without cause or reason or care.
So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple area, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. - John 2:15
Eight buses of folks from Occupy Wall Street groups across the country began rolling into Chicago last night, while 17 buses with National Nurses United members should start to arrive today. The 99% Spring coalition of labor unions, faith groups, and community organizations has also organized bus trips from several major US cities and national peace and justice groups are also sending delegations. Last night, during a talk about the Bradley Manning trial by a Firedoglake blogger at a local Revolution bookstore, I met people who had driven into Chicago from North Carolina and New York, and there's no telling how many folks are driving in cars, taking public buses or trains, or flying commercial to get here.
The influx of thousands of out of town demonstrators arriving in Chicago should correlate into an increase in the size of street demonstrations Thursday, but the National Nurses United rally for a financial speculation tax on Friday will be the first real test of movement strength that could gauge if the G8/NATO summit protest mobilizations will meet or exceed turnout expectations, or underperform. Friday's nurses' march needs to turn out at least 2,000 people to meet expectations, and if that happens, then things look good for a strong showing at Sunday's coalition march, which could turn out between 10-20,000 people. Those kind of numbers would be enough to carry significant momentum into Monday, the second day of the summit, when a large-scale civil disobedience action is being organized to shutdown Boeing's national corporate headquarters.
War Opponents to Protest Honoring of John Brennan, Principal US Advocate of Drone Killings, at Fordham University Commencement Saturday 5/19
Fordham University’s commencement will attract advocates of justice this weekend, as Fordham awards an honorary doctorate to controversial commencement speaker, John Brennan, President Barack Obama’s Deputy National Security Advisor for Counterterrorism and Homeland Security.
Brennan, an alumnus of Fordham and former senior CIA official, recently defended the US program of “targeted killing” by drone as consistent with international law, despite repeated evidence that such strikes kill civilians and would-be rescuers. Brennan "is widely know for his advocacy of kidnapping-for-torture (aka 'extraordinary rendition') and killing 'militants' (including US citizens) with 'Hellfire' missiles fired by 'Predator' and 'Reaper' drone aircraft," wrote former CIA agent Ray McGovern, also a Fordham graduate.
"What Have We Been Doing?": Decorated Veteran Aaron Hughes to Return War Medals at Anti-NATO Protest
Urges Building an Inclusive, Democratized Economy from Bottom Up
Consistent with the Earth’s Resources and People’s Needs
Frederick, MD: On Friday, May 18th at the Frederick Public Library (110 E. Patrick Street) an Occupy G8 People’s Summit will be held from 10 am to 2 pm as part of a weekend of protest and community events. The summit will feature experts (see list below) on a wide range of economic issues. The economic proposals will stand in stark contrast to what the G8 will propose, including:
- How to build an economy from the bottom up that is inclusive of all countries and allows a role for civil society;
We protest the G-8 and NATO, but not Bilderberg. Why?
Do you have to be xenophobic, paranoid, isolationist, or libertarian to protest a secretive gathering of over 100 billionaires, industrialists, media barons, and politicians working to shape our public sphere, or has the left dropped the ball? Is it time for Occupy to step in?
From May 31 to June 3, 2012, at the Westfields Marriott Washington Dulles Hotel, in Chantilly, Va., the Bilderberg Group is expected to gather behind closed doors. This exclusive club will rent the entire hotel, encircle it with armed guards, and keep everyone far away, including the media -- except for those special members of the media who will take part but never report a word of what goes on.
Wikipedia calls Bilderberg: "an annual, unofficial, invitation-only conference of approximately 120 to 140 guests from North America and Western Europe, most of whom are people of influence. About one-third are from government and politics, and two-thirds from finance, industry, labour, education and communications. Meetings are closed to the public."
Bilderberg calls itself: "leading citizens on both sides of the Atlantic that Western Europe and North America" who hold "regular, off-the-record discussions" of "common problems - from trade to jobs, from monetary policy to investment, from ecological challenges to the task of promoting international security. . . . There usually are about 120 participants of whom about two-thirds come from Europe and the balance from North America. About one-third is from government and politics, and two-thirds from finance, industry, labour, education and communications."
Does this group of "leading citizens" look representative of the people's interests?
Bilderberg says this was its agenda four years ago:
* A Nuclear-Free World
* Managing Financial Turbulence
* US Foreign Policy Without Change
* How Serious Are the Threats on Our Economies
* Islam in Europe
* Afghanistan, Challenge for the West
* A Look at the Future
* The Mounting Threat of Protectionism
* After Bush: The Future of US-EU Relations
* Current Affairs: US Elections
Scholars have credited Bilderberg with significant influence in all sorts of disastrous policies from NAFTA to the current push for war with Iran.
One analysis comes from Andrew Kakabadse, a management professor at the UK's Cranfield University:
"There is no conspiracy in Kakabadse's eyes, as Bilderberg has no formal influence whatsoever. 'On the other hand, it has the most tremendous influence since it shapes opinions at the highest levels. Bilderberg is for leaders what the annual medical conference is for doctors. In the latter, certain delegates are more active than others and at some stage the prevailing medical thinking is driven in one particular direction. These regular meetings shape the way the dominant medical theory and practice develops, to the point that the way things are going feels normal and nobody asks for the alternative to the dominant medical paradigms anymore.' The same can be said for world leadership, Kakabadse argues.
"British journalist Jon Ronson, who was invited to a conference by Bilderberg organisers, described the relationship between conference organisers and aspiring political leaders in attendance: 'They'll get an up-and-coming politician who they think may be president or prime minister one day, and as globalist industrialist leaders who believe that politics shouldn't be in the hands of politicians, they try and influence them with wise words in the corridors outside sessions.' Kakabadse calls this process 'smart power'. The shaping of the prevailing opinions amongst the world's leading decision-makers is 'so smart that people don't even know that they are being led', he says. 'In the end, they don't even realise that there are alternative questions to be asked.'"
Is this healthy for democracy?
Or is there a desperate need here for somebody to be mic checked?
We’re putting the focus on the victims of the US/NATO wars all week! Let's keep up the momentum: Spread the word and invite your friends to come along, learn about the crimes of NATO and get involved in the movement to put them to a stop. We are inviting people everywhere to contribute the names of victims of NATO violence, using the hashtag #NATOvictims. We will recite the names as part of a Memorial for the Victims of US/NATO Wars on May 21, the second day of the NATO Summit. Stay tuned for more details of the event -- to be released shortly.
Location-Obama Campaign Headquarters, 130 E. Randolph, Prudential 1 Plaza, moving to the Canadian Consulate (Prudential Plaza 2 ), United Kingdom Consulate (400 N. Michigan Suite 1300), and German Consulate (676 N. Michigan, Suite 3200 )
Noon, Thursday, March 17, 2012
Chicago, IL— On Thursday at noon, CODEPINK: Women for Peace, The World Can’t Wait, Veterans for Peace and other groups associated with the NATO protests will attempt to present letters expressing our outrage about NATO operations and our demand an end to military operations, particularly drone operations, to four NATO countries: the United States, Canada, Germany and the UK. They will also bring visual representations of the civilians killed by NATO forces. "We are outraged by the numbers of innocents killed in NATO/US wars, and will we focus on their stories," says Debra Sweet of The World Can't Wait.
"As NATO meets in Chicago, it is important to remind member states of NATO of the extraordinary violence of NATO and their responsibility for these civilian deaths," says retired Colonel Ann Wright. Of the 28 NATO countries, 18 have consulates in Chicago (Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Greece Germany, Italy, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Spain, Turkey and the United Kingdom). The peace activists have chosen to visit the Consulates of Canada, the UK and Germany since all three nations still have troops in Afghanistan and have been key US allies in initiating and continuing the Afghan war.
In the past ten years, NATO and US military operations have caused tens of thousands of civilian casualties in Afghanistan. Both the British and US militaries have caused numerous civilian deaths by drone attack, and under President Obama, the CIA has killed over 3000 persons in the undeclared war on Pakistan, 65 persons in the undeclared war on Yemen, including the targeted assassinations of four American citizens. Additionally, a NATO helicopter attack on a Pakistani Army border unit killed Pakistani 24 soldiers in September, 2011.
By Oliver Pichardo
English 101, Research Paper
What is it about war that we like so much? Always on the news the war propaganda is heard. How is it possible that there is so much suffering in America and around the world? Who is to blame? It goes without saying that the media is supposed to tell the truth. Why are the American people so unwilling to listen to the truth? What is it about the truth that America fears?
By Yana Kunichoff, Truthout | Interview
The coming NATO summit and its protest counterpart in Chicago is full of symbolism: the stand-off between the 1 percent and the 99 percent in a city where that division is becoming ever more clear. But it's also been full of on-the-ground organizing to bring out communities of color, arguments around the role of the Democratic Party and (still ongoing) legal battles for permits to march within sight and sound of the summit.
Truthout sat down with Andy Thayer and Joe Iosbaker, two organizers who have been up to their elbows in press releases, meetings and messaging since it was announced that Chicago would be hosting the summit, to ask them why they will be protesting NATO.
Thayer was dubbed "the protest king" by NBC Chicago and his attempts to get protest permits over the years and acting as a gay rights and anti-war activist have taken him into court against the city about 18 times.
Meanwhile, Iosbaker has also dealt with legal issues related to his political action. In the fall of 2010, he was one of several anti-war activists in the Midwest whose homes were raided by the FBI on suspicion of working with groups in Colombia and the Middle East.
Together, they've placed themselves in the thick of organizing against the coming NATO summits in Chicago. Truthout sat down with them after one of their organizing meetings for CANG8, a coalition of groups and individuals against the summit. In this conversation, the organizers discuss how NATO has impacted organizing in Chicago, why the left is abandoning the Democrats and what Chicago's 1 percent just didn't see coming.
Yana Kunichoff: Why are you protesting the NATO summits?
Andy Thayer: NATO is, in the words of Dr. King, the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today and that to me is the first thing that you have to bear in mind with NATO. It's NATO's war in Afghanistan, the longest ever war in American history and it is NATO countries that are doing the done strikes in Yemen which have now reached the same awful level as in Pakistan. NATO is responsible for 70% of world military expenditure. Any number of other issues that we might be involved in, or other people might be involved in, are directly impacted by that. I mean, we live in a city that has had half of its mental health clinics closed. We live in a city that has had its public transit system reduced a couple of years ago. We live in a city where the student-teacher ratios are not what they should be, where there is a $700 million budget deficit looming for 2013 just in the Department of Education here. And so all of these issues that are seemingly disparate are very much connected with NATO.
I think this is why we have been very successful in getting people from other movements involved in this protests against NATO and its wars because, for example, when Occupy first started out it was dealing very narrowly with economic issues. But you can't have a situation when homes are foreclosed and expect to deal with it when you have 60% of the federal budget going to military.
The good thing about the protest about NATO is that it's finally bringing together "separate movements." Back in the 60's and early 70's, all these movements were considered part and parcel of one general struggle of the 99% against the 1%. And I'm really happy to see Palestinian activists working with environmentalist working with LGBTQ folks. If we're going to just talk about why to protest against NATO we could be here all day.
Joe Iosbaker: I agree with everything that Andy said. My general view of NATO is that NATO is an extension of U.S. foreign policy. You know, we live in the heart of an Empire. I remember when September 11 happened and there were so many people in this country who were shocked that there was anger at America from countries that had suffered either our direct rule or allies of ours, like you know, Israel's occupation of Palestine. The United States, without NATO originally although they now are involved in it, went into Iraq where over the course of a decade, over a million Iraqis lost their lives directly as a result of the war and occupation. The U.S. and NATO have attacked Libya, we are still threatening Syria, we have bombed Somalia in addition to Yemen and Pakistan, we have special forces inside of Syria ... We have, I've lost count, 40 or 50 or 60 [military] bases. We have troops in Africa for the time ever, in Uganda, and we are threatening several other countries in Central Africa. And that's just what we have done in the last decade.
If you go back to the 1960's and 50's or before the Unites States has had one intervention and bloody war or another against the people of the poor countries of the world for over a century. You ask why do we protest NATO, well those of us who've realized this, we have a responsibility to speak out. That NATO and the G8; who most people in Chicago have never even heard of, have now become topics of dinner table conversations means we have an opportunity and it's thrilling to be organizing the coalition that we have. That includes community groups, that includes, you know, anti-war groups, that includes Occupy, that includes the unions. It's a tremendous opportunity, it's a historic opportunity. It's going to be a historic protest.
White House & Dems Back Banks over Protests: Newly Discovered Homeland Security Files Show Feds Central to Occupy Crackdown
By Dave Lindorff
A new trove of heavily redacted documents provided by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) on behalf of filmmaker Michael Moore and the National Lawyers Guild makes it increasingly evident that there was and is a nationally coordinated campaign to disrupt and crush the Occupy Movement.
By Robert C. Koehler
The city of Chicago and the federal government will be putting on a $55 million security extravaganza later this month to protect NATO delegates, representing the most powerful military force on the planet, from nonviolent protesters who want to see an end to war.
June 7, 2012
Random Row Books
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Ray McGovern will speak on the topic:
The United States, Israel, and Iran
Ray McGovern worked as a CIA analyst from the administration of John F. Kennedy to that of George H. W. Bush. Ray’s duties included chairing National Intelligence Estimates and preparing the President’s Daily Brief, which he briefed one-on-one to President Ronald Reagan’s most senior national security advisers from 1981 to 1985.
In January 2003, McGovern helped create Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) to expose the way intelligence was being falsified to “justify” war on Iraq. On the afternoon of the day (Feb. 5, 2003) Secretary of State Colin Powell misled the UN Security Council on Iraq, VIPS sent an urgent memorandum to President George W. Bush, in which VIPS gave Powell a C minus for content.
On March 2, 2006, McGovern returned the Intelligence Commendation Medallion given him at retirement for “especially meritorious service,” explaining, “I do not want to be associated, however remotely, with an agency engaged in torture.”
On May 4, 2006, in Atlanta, McGovern made national news by confronting Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld on live TV with pointed questions like: “Why did you lie to get us into a war that was not necessary and that has caused these kinds of casualties?”
Ray’s opinion pieces have appeared in many leading newspapers in the United States and abroad. He has debated at the Oxford Forum and appeared on Charlie Rose, The Newshour, CNN, and numerous other TV & radio programs and documentaries. Ray has lectured to a wide variety of audiences.
Ray leads the “Speaking Truth to Power” section of Tell the Word, an expression of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He also teaches at its Servant Leadership School.
The TPP Opening Bash
Global Activist Reception & Teach-in on the Trans-Pacific Partnership
Thursday, May 10, 2012
Reception at 6:00pm * Teach-in at 7:00pm
Community Center for Cooperation
2900 Live Oak St * Dallas, TX
Free and open to the public
As trade negotiators from throughout the Pacific Rim continue to meet in Addison to hammer out final details on the secretive new Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement, it is worth exploring what trade policy has meant and could mean for the economy, the environment and democracy itself.
The TPP is poised to become the largest trade deal of its kind ever. It is likely to influence the types of jobs available in our communities; the wages and benefits that many jobs pay; tax revenues available for public services; greenhouse gas emissions and the environment; access to affordable, generic medications; consumer safety standards; financial regulations; the health of family farms; global migration patterns; and more.
Corporate lobbyists are advocating for a business-as-usual vision for international trade - but veteran "trade justice" campaigners from around the country and around the world are offering alternative visions on what trade policy could mean to communities at home and abroad.
Rub elbows, ask questions and scheme with long-time trade justice champions from the U.S. and beyond during a free, public reception from 6:00 to 7:00pm, followed immediately by a panel discussion featuring:
Sponsored by the Dallas Peace Center, Texas Fair Trade Coalition and Citizens Trade Campaign. This is one of several events taking place will the TPP negotiations occur at the Intercontinental Dallas Hotel from May 8 to 16. Learn more at TPPDallas.org. For more info, please contact the Texas Fair Trade Coalition at (512) 912-6630.
NATO to Debate Protesters, Bet G8 Won't Do That, Bet Obama Won't Do That, Bet Pentagon Won't Do That
NATO representatives will meet with members of the largest anti-NATO protest group next week for an unprecedented one-hour public debate, NBC Chicago has exclusively learned.
Word of the strategic gesture toward the protesters came Wednesday afternoon from NATO's secretary-general following his meeting with the president at the White House.
"Our public diplomacy people are reaching out to these groups," said Anders Fogh Rasmussen. "They will organize some meetings where there will be a possibility to exchange views.
The event will begin at 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 17 at -- in a bit of irony -- the Pritzker Military Library.
"We get to have a public forum where we are able to convince our fellow residents of this city just how bad and nasty an institution NATO is," said Andy Thayer, an organizer of the Coalition Against the NATO / G8 War & Poverty Agenda.
Thayer and other protesters take issue with the money spent on NATO operations and its occupations in sovereign lands, and he said he hopes the public demonstrations and next week's dialogue will enlighten more people to NATO's actions.
"I would argue that most people in this country, when they get to know the facts about what NATO is ... and what NATO does to places like Afghanistan, they would agree that this is not something that should be supported, that our city should not be supporting the NATO Summit," Thayer said.
During "Chicago Week" at NATO Headquarters in Brussels in March, there may have been a preview of how NATO representatives will respond.
Upon being told of the protest slogan that "NATO is the war machine of the one percent," U.S. Ambassador Ivo Daalder rejected the notion, saying he believes NATO's true mission is sometimes misunderstood.
"I wouldn't regard NATO as a war machine for any percent," he said at the time. "What NATO is is an organization that brings together 28 countries."
The summit is May 20 and 21.
San Francisco American Peace Activist group demonstrates against naval base construction at GangJeong Village
photos by Koh, Gill-Chun.
On the morning of May 9, the group demonstrated in front of the Consulate General of South Korea in San Francisco. The peaceful protest focused attention to the damage being done to the environment and to the peaceful spirit of Jeju Island. They were joined by Jeju Island artist Koh, Gill-Chun.
The demonstrators held up signs and banners including one stating “Free Dr. Song”, with a photo of the injured activist, which the people passing by were shocked to see. Almost all the people who stopped to ask questions knew nothing about what is going on in Jeju Island.
At the end of the two-hour demonstration, a representative group of 5 people entered the consulate to try and meet with the Consul General but were told by the receptionist that neither the Consul General nor any of his staff were in the building. When asked where they were or when they were returning, they were told that it was a secret.
Stop the Drone War Weekend @ Fordham & Radio City
Friday, May 18 – 5:15 pm. - Gather Main Entrance at 2853 Southern Blvd, Bronx, NY.At 6:00 pm. Archbishop Timothy Dolan will be presenting the Fordham Baccalaureate Mass for the Fordham University Commencement for the Class of 2012. Urge Archbishop Dolan to speak out against the drones controlled out of Hancock Air Base in Syracuse, NY, which is part of his eccelesiastical province.
Protest When Obama Gives Barnard Commencement Address. Protest the ongoing, escalating and spreading wars! The commencement starts at 12:30. It will be held on the South Lawn of the Columbia campus. Meet outside the gates at 116th Street and Broadway. Sponsored by War Criminals Watch, World Can't Wait and Occupy Harlem. Contact email@example.com
By Dave Lindorff
The Senate is currently deadlocked on taking action to prevent the interest on new Stafford guaranteed student loans from rising on July 1 from 3.4% to 6.8%, with Democrats saying they want to “pay for” keeping the current “lower” 3.4% rate by closing a loophole that allows some wealthy people to avoid paying Social Security and Medicare taxes, while Republicans want to “pay for” keeping the lower rate by eliminating a fund for preventative health care in the 2010 health care reform law.
But what is all this nonsense about “paying for” a supposedly “lower” interest rate of 3.4%?
UPDATE: from Ellen Barfield:
May 11, 2012, Kids Sue Government for Warming the Globe: Pack the Court
May 19, 2012, David Swanson speaking in Rockville, Md., with Peace Action Montgomery
May 12-13, People's Summit
May 17-19, Voices for Creative Nonviolence events and reunion.
May 18-19, NATO-Free Future.
May 18-20, National War Tax Resistance Gathering and Coordinating Committee Meeting
May 18: National Nurses United Rally,
11 a.m. March leaving from Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers,
12:15 p.m. Rally at Daley Plaza, Washington & Dearborn.
May 19: David Swanson speaking
May 20: Coalition Against NATO-G8 Poverty Agenda (CANG8) Rally at Noon
We have worked out a 10% discount with AMTRAK for anyone traveling to the Chicago demonstration on May 20. You can use this discount to travel to and from Chicago on an AMTRAK train from anywhere in the country during the period from May 17 to May 23. To get the special rate, you need to make a reservation and give them the “Convention fare code number of X50K-949.” If they ask you what organization you are from, it is UNAC. AMTRAK fares go up the closer it gets to the day of departure. So, to get the lowest fare, it is best to reserve a seat as soon as possible. There are other discounts for seniors and youth that may be cheaper.
May 18, 2012 Frederick, Md., Occupy G-8 People's Summit
May 24, 2012, David Swanson in Richmond, Va.
June 16, 2012, New York, N.Y., Protest NYPD Abuse and Targeting of Muslims
July 4, 2012, Philadelphia, 99% Convention
July 14, 2012, Wisconsin, Peacestock.
July 16, 2012, David Swanson at Rutherford Institute in Charlottesville, Va.
August 8-12, 2012, Miami, Fla., Veterans for Peace Convention.
September 17, 2012, Occupy Monsanto