Grand Jury witch hunt

[Editor: There’s a federal grand jury that has been convening in Seattle since Aug 5 (March 2, according to a knowledgable  source). Three activists have been jailed for refusing to cooperate with federal authorities.  Apparently, the activists are not charged with any crime other than exercising their right to remain silent — which, I hear, does not apply to grand juries such as this.)The National Lawyer’s Guild agrees that it’s a witch hunt. The mainstream media has failed to adequately cover the story.

The story is that there were violent, intense police raids conducted in Portland and Seattle in July. FBI agents and police broke into activists’ homes and confiscated political material and computer equipment. Apparently they’re fishing for information about “anarchists,” such as the minority of “Black Bloc” anarchists involved in the Occupy Movement.

There have been solidarity protests around the country. The activist community in Seattle is particularly concerned about the grand jury.

Please comments/email me (ThinkerFeeler@yahoo.com) with additional information and links.]

Advance to 9:40 in the following video for my discussion about the Grand Jury witch hunt, with Nicole Sandler on the Thom Hartmann show.

More info from https://www.facebook.com/events/201361689996904/:
http://nopoliticalrepression.wordpress.com/
http://supportresist.net/
http://saynothing.info/
http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/political-convictions/Content?oid=14397498

Leah’s statements:
http://nopoliticalrepression.wordpress.com/2012/09/13/leah-lynn-plantes-statement-and-demonstrations-in-support-of-grand-jury-resisters/

Marriage equality and voting rights for corporations, please!

 I look forward to the day when corporations are free to marry whomever they want – even including other corporations (or would that simply be a corporate merger?).

When will we learn to accept corporations as people just like the rest of us? We should all be outraged that King County Elections has deprived a corporate person of his right to register to vote here in King County. No wonder corporations feel compelled to buy elections. Perhaps if we let them vote, they would be less corrupt. They may even be willing to pay their fair share of State taxes (or maybe not). 

Why I Don't Trust "Isms": Chris Hedges Versus The Black Bloc

Originally published by CounterPunch – Editor Jeffery St Clair

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/05/07/hedges-vs-the-black-bloc-round-two/

by MARK TAYLOR-CANFIELD

A recent article by Chris Hedges is once again causing heated arguments among activists in the Occupy Wall Street movement.  “Black Bloc: The Cancer in Occupy,” was published in his syndicated Truthdig.com column back in February, but folks are now talking about it again at political organizing meetings and on social networking websites. After Black Bloc Anarchists broke windows, vandalized cars and assaulted members of the press during May Day protests in Seattle and Oakland, the issue has taken on a new urgency among occupy groups around the country.

Hedge’s scathing critique of these tactics has been challenged by many people who sympathize with Anarchist philosophy. Most occupiers in the major cities have adopted a policy of neither condemning nor endorsing Black Bloc actions because they usually vandalize only corporate banks and businesses. But the truth is, many occupy activists and most of the general public are turned off by acts of property damage committed as a form of protest. Black Bloc tactics have been criticized by some Occupy Seattle activists and Chris Hedges claims it is responsible for chasing the 99% away from the Occupy Wall Street movement.

In my opinion, Hedges’ article was a purely emotional response to the Anarchists. Rather than using good research and obtaining first-hand knowledge, he simply wrote from a gut level reaction. Hedges later admitted during an interview posted at Truthout.org that he hadn’t spoken to any Black Bloc activists before writing the article. He says he listened to about four hours of Anarchist radio out of Eugene, Oregon and read some magazines and websites. Supposedly, the Black Bloc are a direct threat to the power of what he calls the “organized left” – a group in which he seems to claim membership.

Actually, I am getting really tired of ideologues of all persuasions, including Chris Hedges.

I don’t trust any “ism”!

First of all, a true anarchist would never identify themselves with a political or philosophical label because that in itself is highly limiting. Society will immediately identify and categorize you depending upon their view of that political philosophy. I simply refuse to be labeled, folded, spindled or wrapped in anything besides my own skin!

Call me whatever you like, but you’re probably wrong.

I prefer to build bridges and work with as many groups and individuals as possible while never permanently adhering to anyone’s religion, whether it be Christian fundamentalism or Anarchism. Also, I find that most people’s political or non-political affiliations are almost always based on their own psychological profile. People choose politics according to their own personal style. A left-brained materialist might find conservatism appealing while a free thinking artistic adventurer is probably not going to have much fun at a GOP fundraiser. In my view, political and philosophical distinctions are basically natural byproducts of the personality of the individual.

Ideologues refuse to accept this fact. They can’t resist the urge to lead irrational crusades in an attempt to either win everyone over to their way or thinking, or to destroy the opposition. As two prime examples, I cite both the fanatical US corporatist “War on Terror”, and their Islamic extremist enemy Al Qaeda.

Ideologies are simply theories, many of which have never really been put into practice. Theoretically, many of them sound great. But these same ideologies are also responsible for a lot of mass suffering and destruction on this planet. Communism was invoked under Stalin to justify the deaths of millions of people. The Christian dominionist ideology has been responsible for religious wars and widespread ecological disasters. Inevitably, those who claim to have the answer to all of the world’s problems are actually the ones who end up causing a lot more suffering by their proposed solutions.

I say, free your minds! Don’t allow any person, organization, philosophy or authority to determine what you think.

The main problem I have with many of the “isms” being promoted within the social justice movement is that they are based on archaic, antiquated philosophies. Quoting dead writers from decades or centuries past is not an adequate response to the serious environmental and social crises we are facing in the world today. Doesn’t anyone have an original idea?

Anarchism, socialism, communism, capitalism, libertarianism, etc. are all just more “isms” that limit free thought through peer pressure and self-perpetuating propaganda. I know that some will accuse me of being a “deconstructionist”, but I also reject that label as purely fashionable and ultimately irrelevant.

I try to avoid accepted political terms or labels whenever possible when I speak or write. I want to reflect reality, not ideology!

But this doesn’t mean I consider myself a cynic. Actually the opposite is true. I am dedicated to upholding ideals concerning justice, autonomy and personal freedom. It’s just that I don’t expect any particular spiritual, political or economic philosophy to solve all the world’s problems and create Heaven on earth for me overnight. To me, those kinds of false expectations are based on immaturity. It comes from an uninformed but very popular point of view which sees a solution to everything in one powerful man or woman, one political philosophy or one religious doctrine.

And what about the idea that there is going to be some kind of glorious revolution which will solve all of our problems?

Well, if the revolutions in the USA, France, Russia, Tunisia and Egypt are any indication, it looks like multiple uprisings will be necessary in order to maintain any semblance of the original resistance movements. The struggle for justice is an eternal battle that requires constant vigilance and strong dedication. The battle is never completely won but it is certainly worth fighting!

And a life without “isms” is its own reward. Avoid them and live free!

Mark Taylor-Canfield is an independent journalist and a member of the Occupy Seattle Media Working Group.

Originally Published @ Counterpunch.org

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/05/07/hedges-vs-the-black-bloc-round-two/

Caught Red-Handed – Selective Purge Set Up for Black Voters

Four hundred and eighty-eight voters, all but four lifelong Democrats, and nearly all Black, had their voting history erased by Shelby County (TN) election workers, setting them up for purge from the voter list. These selective alterations appear to target the race of US Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN-09).

To alter voting histories for a selected set of voters, putting them at risk for strategically selected and improper removal from the voting list, is to demean them, to treat them as if they have less worth as human beings than they do. And to demean them is to wrong them. What Shelby County’s election staff has done, in altering the records, is morally wrong.

The full list of voters whose voting records have been altered is here: http://www.bbvforums.org/forums/messages/8/82058.html — If you know someone on this list, please let them know about this.

DETAILS ON SHELBY COUNTY VOTER LIST ALTERATIONS

Shelby County voters owe a debt of gratitude to Darrick “D” Harris (no relation). This information has come to light because, when I spoke with Harris by telephone recently, he expressed concern to me about his discovery that his voting history had somehow evaporated.

An active Democratic voter and political consultant, Harris had copies of voter databases containing his own voter history. He knows he votes regularly, but as of Oct. 2011, the voter list reports that he has never voted — not once!

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?

When voters fail to vote for two federal general elections, a purge process is initiated.

Your voter history should never vary. If it says you voted in the Nov. 2008 presidential election in 2010, in 2011 it should not report that you DIDN’T vote in 2008. The only way the database can alter your voting history is if someone changes the information in the database.

D. Harris did not just have his 2008 voting history erased. Every vote he had ever cast, going back to 2000, had been erased. I took the official Shelby County voter list, filedate 2010 (obtained by court order in a lawsuit) and compared it with the voter history list from 2011.

488 voters had their histories erased.

ALMOST ALL VOTERS WERE BLACK

Of these, according to the 2011 database, 430 are Black. It is against the law to alter voter records. It is a civil rights violation to select Black voter records for alteration.

WHY DILUTION OF RACIAL IDENTITY IS SIGNIFICANT

Last year, I reported that in Shelby County, they have been diluting the racial identifier so that thousands of Black voters are now reported as “other.” Twenty-four of the voters with histories erased had also had their racial identifiers removed. In fact, 454 out of 488 on the erased list are Black, and only four are White, leaving all the others marked “other.” Most likely, out of 488 erasures, 484 are Black.

ALMOST ALL ARE DEMOCRAT

Only fiver voters in the erased list show that they have ever voted Republican, but you’ll notice that I listed that as just four in my opening paragraph. That’s because Shelby County has also been altering party choice in its voter records. It is possible that Ruth Ann Phelps, one of the five so-called Republicans, never voted Republican at all.

Ruth Ann Phelps is reported as selecting a Republican ballot in the May 2010 primary, but her records show she is a lifelong Democrat. I found hundreds of lifelong Democrats whose voter history preference was altered in the May and August 2010 elections.

Phelps is an interesting case. She used to be one of the key employees at Shelby County Elections. She at one time had a password to the GEMS election management system, but the audit log for the GEMS database shows that Ruth Ann Phelps password was revoked in June 2010. Phelps at one time worked at the main elections operation center, where she had access to voter list maintenance systems, but in 2010 she was transferred to a downtown office. By 2011, her voter history had been erased. Right around this time, she retired.

THE SELECTIVE PREPARATION FOR PURGE TARGETS U.S. CONGRESSMAN STEVE COHEN

Not only are almost all the altered records Democrat, not only are they almost all Black, but every single one of them is in Congressional District 09.

POLITICAL TALK

I have heard that Cohen’s seat is not considered at risk, though with redistricting and a well financed opponent, and paperless touchscreen voting machines, and selective removal of voters from his voting base, who knows?

I have also heard that the most astute political strategists focus on changing not just the weather (short term election results), but the climate (long term voting environment).

At any rate, it doesn’t matter what Cohen’s chances are. The rights that were violated are those of Shelby County VOTERS, who have a right to vote for the candidate of their choice, and who are entitled to accurate records.

And I have a question: How widespread is this problem? Are there other counties where voter histories are strategically eroding? I have spoken with both Democratic and Republican election integrity enthusiasts, and one of my frustrations is that the Democrats count on their VAN system and the Republicans count on their VOTER VAULT system to keep them up to date on voter list data. Neither of these systems is the real, working data. It should be possible to detect alterations like this in other counties, but since purges are performed using the actual county database, skip the VAN and VOTER VAULT: Examine the actual lists. As we see in Shelby County, there is no reason to believe that the raw data matches VAN or VOTER VAULT. The raw data is getting altered from time to time.

To detect this kind of alteration, a database created and saved in 2010 should be compared for changes with more recent iterations, but the actual county database should be used for the exam, rather than relying on proprietary party databases.

THEY SEND A LETTER BEFORE PURGING, DON’T THEY?

Altering the records is illegal, and a civil rights violation, regardless of whether voters can halt the purge process by responding to a letter. Taking the position that this is a minor matter, because voters wrongfully targeted for purge can always reinstate themselves by responding to a purge letter is like saying false arrest doesn’t matter, because you can always prove you are innocent.

And there is such a thing as justice.

“Oppressors do all they can to prevent use of the category of justice; they do all they can to cast the situation in terms of good behavior and bad behavior\u2026sometimes our frameworks of conviction lead us to discount the significance of what we see and hear. We regard the one before us as a candidate for charity, should we be so inclined, or we insist that his condition is his own fault.”

“I heard the Afrikaners say to the black and coloreds, “We are good people, if you just behave, we will give you most of what you are asking for.”

— Justice: Rights and Wrongs, by Nicholas Wolterstorff. (Second passage in reference to pre-apartheid South Africa.)

What happened to the strategically selected voters in Shelby County, whose records were altered to put them at special risk for purge, is a moral wrong.

And it is illegal.

PERMISSION TO REPRINT GRANTED, WITH LINK TO http://www.blackboxvoting.org

Raids On Journalists At NATO Protests – A Report on Chicago

by Mark Taylor Canfield

Protest Marches

Anti-war protesters at the NATO Summit in Chicago faced off with Chicago police all day on Sunday May 20th in a cat and mouse game that lasted late into the night.

War veterans wanting to return their medals led a march of thousands early in the day.

Later in the afternoon CPD blocked Michigan Street and pushed back on the crowd. Police officers alternately donned gas masks and then took them off while dispersal orders were announced. The confrontation at Michigan and 25th Street continued for approximately two hours.

Some of the marchers were injured by police. A few activists had bloody faces, apparently caused by riot sticks. Eventually the demonstrators were caged in by police and had to retreat.

Live Fox news coverage on WGN cast the protesters as nothing but a nuisance. When a WGN reporter at the march finally approached an activist for an interview, he was abruptly cut off and the live coverage ended.

Eventually marchers left the area of the police line on Michigan. Meanwhile, helicopters hovered above in the sky all day as the demonstrators marched for many miles shouting, “Who’s street? Our streets!”

One group of protesters faced off with police and 2 LRAD vehicles at the fences on Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive.

After this confrontation the group marched up East 26th Street followed by a large number of riot police.

Some protesters moved North on South State Street.

Chicago police also blocked off 21st Ave and State Street with a row of riot cops. Several arrests were made and more injuries were reported by folks at that location.

Protesters encountered riot police all night as they marched around the city. None of the activists were allowed to get near McCormick Place where the NATO summit had been held.

At one point, it was announced that marchers were headed to the Art Institute.

Live Streamers Raided At Gunpoint

Apparently, live video streamers are now subject to search and seizure by the Chicago Police Department.

Livestreamers Luke Rudkowksi Tim Pool, Jeoff Shively, Dustin & Jess were raided at gunpoint by police on Saturday night. They were driving home and were pulled over and cuffed, searched and released with no charges.

Apparently, this is what a police state looks like…

Tim Pool said he and another man were detained and he was searched again by Chicago police on Sunday.

Go to wearechange.org for the video of the first raid.

Freedom of the press?

Originally posted @ http://chicago.indymedia.org/…

http://chicago.indymedia.org/node/916

Free Speech Battle Over Protests Looming at Seattle Colleges

A major battle over free speech is being waged on local college campuses in Seattle. The Seattle Community College District Board of Trustees wants to revise the Washington Administrative Code (WAC) for Seattle colleges. The district is proposing new rules that would regulate protests on all three of the city’s state funded community college campuses.

Organizations opposed to the board’s proposals include the ACLU, the Seattle chapter of the American Federation of Teachers, student councils at all three of the district’s colleges, and Occupy Seattle.

About a hundred Occupy Seattle participants set up camp at Seattle Central Community College last fall after being pushed out of Westlake Park by police. SCCC president Paul Kilpatrick and the school administration went to court to evict the demonstrators from the campus, and on December 10, 2011, the occupiers were forced to leave. A Thurston County Superior Court judge has allowed the college to impose new rules which prohibit camping on the campus, on an “emergency” basis.

Prior to this ruling, there had been no rules regulating encampments on state college campuses in the state of Washington.

Among other proposals, the new set of rules would:
-restrict the size of protest signs to a maximum of 3 feet by 5 feet
-impose a limit of one sign per person.
-place restrictions on where protests can take place and how long they can last. Student groups would be forced to end their demonstrations after eight hours, whereas off-campus organizations like Occupy Seattle would only be allowed to rally for five hours at a time.
-prohibit protests outside of designated “free speech zones” on campus
-require non-student groups to notify the college 24 hours in advance of demonstrations.

Protesters who violate the rules could be arrested by Seattle police and charged with trespassing.

At the first board hearing on Tuesday March 27, Karen Strickland, president of the Seattle chapter of the American Federation of Teachers, said that if the changes are adopted, her organization’s march banner will not be allowed on campus.

“Some people’s views have not been appreciated,” she told them. “Free speech, just like access to public higher education, is a core part of democracy. And that’s what we need to fight for! Right now in our country there are all kinds of threats to democracy.”

Although the school district claims that the process of adopting new rules actually began in 2010, Occupy Seattle activists have interpreted the proposed rule changes as a direct response to their occupation of the college. They claim that the district is placing a prior restraint on any future protest activity at the school.

Washington State law requires an open public comment period before any new state college rules can be established. In compliance with this requirement, the SCCD Board of Trustees held a public hearing on March 27. Due to the overwhelming community response to these proposed rule changes, the school district scheduled another hearing a week later.

On April 5, about 200 people participated in the second hearing held at the Broadway Performance Hall on the campus of Seattle Central Community College. Seattle Community College District Vice Chancellor Carin Weiss was “the presiding official over the proceedings.” SCCC president Paul Kilpatrick was in attendance, along with a representative from the Washington State Attorney General’s Office, Derek Edwards.

Weiss opened the hearing by stating that the purpose for the new rules is “to establish reasonable controls on demonstrations at the college campuses.”

She asserted the Board of Trustees is attempting to propose rules which will maintain a balance between the rights of people to protest and the needs of the administration to limit disruptions to the educational process.

LaRond Baker from the Washington ACLU spoke against the proposed rules, citing limitations on the rights to freedom of speech and assembly that are protected under the First Amendment to the US Constitution.

“We are opposed to the rules on several grounds and we believe they will not be upheld by the courts,” she said.

The ACLU maintains that any rule which requires non-student groups to notify the college 24 hours in advance of protests is illegal and would be considered ‘prior restraint’ under the Washington State Constitution.

Baker also criticized a proposed prohibition on the distribution of potentially “libelous” material on campus. She described the language of the proposed school district rule as “vague” and warned that under the board’s proposal, “persons passing out handbills on campus could be charged with a criminal offense.”

She concluded her public testimony with the following statement: “The Washington ACLU is opposed to these new rule changes and we ask the Board of Trustees to withdraw their proposal.”

Seattle Central Community College staff member Kelly McHenry told SCCC President Paul Kilpatrick, “As a college librarian, I love the free exchange of ideas. Because of this, I have to stand up against anything that infringes on the First Amendment.”

McHenry opposes the regulation of demonstrations because she believes colleges and universities should encourage rather than limit public discussion.

“Allowing for free expression is part of the educational process,” she argued. “Are you also going to limit what films students should see and what books they can read?”

Zack Robertson, head of the SCCC student government, read a statement to the board of trustees:

“We oppose the new rules because we find them unnecessary. Regulations already exist that prohibit disruptions of classrooms, vandalism, etcetera. Why do we need new rules when these issues have already been addressed?”

Robertson also opposed the idea of ‘free speech zones’.

“We have measured the area on campus that is being designated for this purpose ,” he said, “and found it to be less than 400 square feet. It’s about the size of a small one bedroom apartment. That is clearly unacceptable.”

 

One eloquent statement came from Sange, a 20 year old immigrant from Gambia who is enrolled at Seattle Central Community College.

“You may have forgotten why people from around the world come to this country,” he said. “Where I lived we had no protections on our freedom, so let me say something to you.”

Sange then proceeded to read the Declaration of Independence .”We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” he recited.

When he was finished reading he received a standing ovation from the crowd at the Broadway Performance Hall.

Although hundreds of people have participated in the public hearings, no one has spoken in favor of the new college district rules.

A board of trustees meeting is scheduled for April 12 to access the results of the public comment period. Despite the community outcry, school district officials could vote to approve the proposals on that date. There is nothing in the state law that requires the board to follow all public recommendations. Student groups say they will picket the meeting if they are not allowed to participate in the next step of the decision making process.

According to the state law governing changes to the WAC rules, if the community college district board decides to make significant changes to their original proposal, another series of public hearings will be required to provide for more public comment.

After the college school district hearing on April 5, one anonymous Occupy Seattle activist wearing a Guy Fawkes mask addressed a large crowd of students and teachers outside the building.

“If they approve these new restrictions on our freedom of speech and assembly,” he said, “We will have to be ready to immediately challenge the rules by breaking them. We need hundreds of people on campus holding two signs or standing outside of the designated protest areas. We can’t let them take away our First Amendment rights! I’m willing to go to jail to defend my freedom of speech! Are you?”

 (originally published at HuffPost)

Devastating account of waste, mismangement, and lies concerning the war in Iraq

AlterNet published an article by Peter Van Buren, I Had to Tell the Truth About Iraq–Even Though it Cost Me My Career.

The author, who worked for the State Department at a forward operating base in Iraq, says, “the space between what we were doing (the eye-watering waste and mismanagement), and what we were saying (the endless claims of success and progress), was filled with numb soldiers and devastated Iraqis….. the United States wasted more than $44 billion in the reconstruction/deconstruction of Iraq.”

The US Military prepared for a summit held in Iraq.

If you deploy enough police and soldiers — for the summit, Baghdad was shut down for a week, the cell phone network turned off, and a “public holiday” proclaimed to keep the streets free of humanity — you can temporarily tame any place, at least within camera view. More than $500 million was spent, in part planting flowers along the route dignitaries took in and out of the heavily fortified International Zone at the heart of the capital (known in my day as the Green Zone).

In response to his candor, Van Buren was harassed by his employers, tracked by security agents, and is about to be terminated. He met with other whistleblowers. “What we really have in common is that, in the course of just doing our jobs, we stumbled into colossal government wrongdoing (systematized torture, warrantless wiretapping, fraud, and waste), stood up for what is right in the American spirit, and found ourselves paying surprising personal prices for acts that seemed obvious and necessary. ”

The injustice of all this is compounded by the fact that the massive costs will be born not by the 1% who profited from the wars but by the rest of us, in the form of slashing of education and social programs.

Scouring the News for Signs of Intelligent Life

Lots of coverage of the republican primaries out there. Few signs of intelligent life in that pile of smoking offal. Going to move on. There must be more important stuff going on. Mr. Fish strikes again

Oh, here we go: Chris Hedges has a good piece in Truth Dig about the NDAA – National Defense Authorization Act – and what a dangerous piece of legislation the NDAA truly is. Like the presidential authority to use drone weaponry to assassinate US citizens or our “enemies” anywhere in the world, this NDAA piece of legislation may look less scary to some in the hands of President Obama (I don’t know why that is? He’s pretty aggressive.) than it might look in the hands of a President Palin, but once presidential authority is asserted, it is seldom relinquished, so you have to look ahead at how the NDAA would work with President Santorum or the like. I don’t like.

Indefinite military detention. Hmm…

On another front SCOTUS Inc. came out with another 5-4 decision that says if you are arrested for any offense, no matter how minor, the jail is entitled to strip search you for a close visual inspection. A bid Thank You to the 4 who voted against, but you lost and so did we.

The plaintiff in the underlying case Florence v. County of Burlington was strip searched twice after he was arrested for failure to pay a fine. The fine had been paid, the arrest should not have occurred, but two strip searches later, Albert W. Florence (a black man) was released. He was a passenger in his BMW when his wife was pulled over for speeding and the records search produced the erroneous arrest warrant matter.

hmm… sometimes the authorities simply get it wrong, right? Those things happen. No harm, no foul, says Justice Anthony Kennedy. At least no harm that he can see.

I monitor a national police oversight listserv and caught this story regarding the Trayvon Martin – George Zimmerman shooting death that continues to build public outrage: The Elusiveness of Police Accountability.

There is something particularly scary about a cop wannabe packing a 9 mm weapon and patrolling a neighborhood. Judgment, training, – there are a lot of things missing in this community security package. Bu, the Atlantic Cities story tells the story of 18 yo Ramarley Graham, who was chased into his house by NY police and shot dead in the bathroom. He is reported to have been unarmed and in possession of a small quantity of marijuana. The point of the Atlantic Cities piece is that if Trayvon had been shot by a police officer instead of a cop wannabe, there would be a lot less news coverage of the event. That’s probably true. There is something really disturbing about the fact that Zimmerman continued to follow Martin after dispatch advised to stop. With Ramarley Graham and Trayvon Martin we appear to have two deaths that just didn’t need to happen.

We don’t know if Ramarley was wearing a hoodie when he was shot. That seems to be scary attire. I am wearing my hoodie every day now.

Here are some facts that I think are inescapable:

Justice is elusive. Handguns are ubiquitous. Armed men who think they need to keep the peace are dangerous to young black men.

My solution? Reduce the number of weapons in the community. Gun control. Buy back programs. Interference in the realm of handgun commerce. A big government type solution to a big public problem.

Yep, a like a little big government from time to time, but I am not too crazy about the NDAA and Scotus Inc.

Cancelled – Glenn Greenwald to speak at UW, Thurs April 5, 7 pm

Glenn’s appearance has been cancelled but here is an interview from March 30th, 2012.  http://johannhari.com/?powerpress_pinw=2058-podcast

Originally posted on this site here  http://johannhari.com/2012/03/30/glenn-greenwald-a-conversation/

My latest podcast is a conversation with the most essential political commentator in the US: Glenn Greenwald of Salon.com. He is part of a tradition of American writers – from Thomas Paine to Mark Twain to Noam Chomsky – who embody the best values of America, because it always starts from a simple premise. He looks at the victims of the US government – both at home and abroad – and asks – how would I feel if this was done to me? How would I feel if I was being wiretapped? How would I feel if my house and my family were blown up by robot-bombers sent from thousands of miles away?

In our conversation, we explore how political tribalism often blinds American liberals to crimes committed by Democrats – and how Glenn learned, from his childhood in Florida, to see beyond this.