WHERE ARE THEY NOW?

[taken from October 2010 articles/blog posts]

NASA’s Islam Outreach Minister Charles Bolden

GOP lawmakers are critical of Charles Bolden for leaving last week on a trip to China just as the agency he leads begins pursuing an ambitious new agenda. It is the latest in a series of controversial moves that some speculate could result in Bolden’s ouster.

A law signed a week ago gives NASA four months or less to develop a dozen different plans for the future, including a detailed report on how it would replace the retiring space shuttle.

It’s an ambitious schedule, one that NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said requires the agency to “think and act boldly.” But as has been the case for much of his tenure, Bolden won’t be around as the plans get rolling. The jet-setting former astronaut left Friday for China on a weeklong trip.

Since taking charge of NASA in July 2009, Bolden has visited 14 countries and has been missing at critical moments. Last year, he skipped one of the first shuttle flights under his watch to visit Japan, and most recently was on a trip to Europe and the Middle East when the House nearly defeated legislation outlining the NASA vision endorsed by the Obama administration.

“How about saving the manned space program — in America?” said Rep. John Culberson of Texas, one of several Republicans who opposed Bolden’s most recent trip. “Charlie Bolden should stay focused on America’s manned space program.”

His absence and several gaffes have led to speculation that Bolden may not be in command of NASA much longer.

“There’s always speculation about people’s tenure in Washington,” said Lori Garver, deputy NASA chief. “We have gotten to used it, and we don’t even consider it a distraction at NASA because we are so excited about our future.”

Bolden, who has said his foreign trips are intended to expand international cooperation on space exploration projects, was unavailable for comment. [...]

Ultimately, Congress and the White House settled on a plan, which became law Oct. 11. It assigns NASA to build a new spacecraft for exploration beyond lower Earth orbit while giving commercial rockets a larger role in supply missions to the International Space Station.

During a media conference call on the day of the signing, Bolden read a statement, thanked reporters and turned the call over to Garver — a practice that has become routine. Two sources said Bolden continued to listen to the questions addressed to Garver but was barred from speaking.

An administration source said the White House originally planned to hold a public signing ceremony, but canceled it when Bolden expressed interest in changing his travel plans and attending.

Some administration sources said Bolden has been told to keep a low profile, though the White House denies that assertion.

Bolden has all but disappeared from public view since the White House publicly reprimanded him last month, after NASA’s inspector general found that he acted “inappropriately” when he consulted with Marathon Oil Corp. about a proposed NASA biofuel program. The inspector general did not find he violated federal law, however. [...]

The China trip has stirred controversy as well. “It should go without saying that NASA has no business cooperating with the Chinese regime on human spaceflight,” wrote Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.), who sits on the subcommittee with oversight of NASA’s budget. “China is taking an increasingly aggressive posture globally, and their interests rarely intersect with ours.”

Bolden wrote back that the trip had been in the works since November, when Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao agreed to a dialogue on space exploration.

NASA’s Islam Outreach Minister Charles Bolden

COMMENTARY FROM PETA:

Bob Barker to NASA: Leave the Animals Alone

The price is wrong.

That’s the message that PETA pal Bob Barker sent to NASA chief Charles Bolden in a letter today urging him to call off the ridiculous plan to blast dozens of squirrel monkeys with a massive dose of radiation before locking in steel cages for life.

Writes the lovely Mr. Barker, “These scientifically invalid experiments squander $1.75 million of taxpayers’ money and cost animals their health and freedom, so the price isn’t right on any count.”

Barker joins Sir Paul McCartney, Alicia Silverstone, the European Space Agency, former NASA astronauts, and former NASA employees, in speaking out against NASA’s cruel, pointless animal experiment. Let’s join them!

Ward Churchill:

A former University of Colorado professor who compared some Sept. 11 victims to a Nazi is asking the Colorado Court of Appeals to give him his job back after a jury ruled last year his firing was politically motivated.

Ward Churchill says the Board of Regents violated his civil rights when it convened a judicial process to dismiss him after board members said they wanted Churchill fired.

Jihadist-lawyer Lynne Stewart: [warning: link to "Workers World"]

Family, friends and supporters of imprisoned “people’s lawyer” Lynne Stewart marched, sang and drummed on Oct. 8 outside the lower Manhattan prison where she is being held. It was her 71st birthday, and the crowd chanted “Free Lynne Stewart” and “Happy Birthday, Lynne,” led by the booming voice of her spouse, Ralph Poynter.

Jihadist-lawyer Lynne Stewart:

I’m writing today to notify you that my organization, the Party for Socialism and Liberation (PSL), is hosting a National Conference on Socialism on Nov. 13-14 in Los Angeles at the University of Southern California campus. We expect many hundreds of people to come from all over the country to attend. The PSL is a revolutionary Marxist organization that struggles for social and economic justice in the United States. As a member group of the ANSWER Coalition, we have actively supported your case and demanded your freedom.

In our Nov. 13 evening panel, we are giving our first-ever PSL “Fighters for Justice” awards to several people. We would like to honor you as an award recipient. Other recipients will include political prisoners Mumia Abu-Jamal, Leonard Peltier and the Cuban Five. Presenters will include former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark. Mr. Clark will present your award since he has worked with you so closely.

Beer Summiteer Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

In this second excerpt from Henry Louis Gates Jr.’s book Faces of America, The Root’s editor-in-chief details the research into writer Elizabeth Alexander’s slave ancestry — outside the U.S.

Beer Summiteer Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Cambridge — Length of this week’s City Council meeting: 3 hours. Here are a few highlights:

Following the recommendations of the report regarding the arrest of Henry Louis Gates, city councilors asked City Manager Bob Healy and department heads to form a policy for “the timely dissemination of accurate information during high-profile incidents including, but not limited to, incidents involving police.”

Beer Summiteer Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. panel discussion

[Western Connecticut State University] helped to put the incident into perspective with a panel of educators, journalists, police and residents. Dr. George Coleman, deputy commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Education, chaired the event, held in Ives Concert Hall.

Coleman pointed out that when famous people speak insensitively about race, the collective community calls for a national dialogue, “as if race is an overlooked aspect of the national curriculum and the faux pas is the result of the chapter being skipped over or the violator not being in school that day.”

The panel’s general consensus was that for race to be less of an issue, people have to spend more time getting to know each other and understanding the different perspectives that each race has about freedom in America.

Would-Be Koran Burner Pastor Terry Jones

he Florida pastor who canceled plans to burn a Quran has picked up a new car in New Jersey.

Car dealer Brad Benson offered Terry Jones a car if Jones promised to never burn the Muslim holy book. Benson made the offer during one of his quirky radio commercials.

The Gainesville, Fla., pastor collected a gray 2011 Hyundai Accent after arriving under tight security at Benson’s dealership in South Brunswick Friday.

Jones says the offer was not the reason he didn’t burn the Quran. The pastor says he’ll donate it to a Jersey City charity that helps abused women.

Benson placed giant, removable American flag peace stickers on the hood and roof of the hatchback. He says he wants to make it clear that he doesn’t condone anything that Jones stands for.

Would-Be Koran Burner Pastor Terry Jones

The Florida pastor that proposed burning a Koran on the anniversary of 9/11 says the death threats continue even after the burning did not take place.

“I got a call from the FBI saying there was a death threat out now with an exact date on it, that I would be killed between the 12th and 20th of October,” said Pastor Terry Jones in an appearance on KIRO Radio’s Ron & Don Show.

Jones says he travels with bodyguards, and carries a gun for his protection.

“I carry the gun with me at all times,” says Jones. “We are of course concerned, and we are taking as much precautions as we can.”

Jones says regardless of the threats, they do not plan to disappear. “We definitely have no intention of going underground.”

Would-Be Koran Burner Pastor Terry Jones

Pastor Terry Jones says it’s the first of several rallies, here in Tampa and around the country. He’s calling it “Stand Up America.” [...]

Now, he’s taking his fiery message on tour. His first stop is this weekend, in downtown Tampa. Jones plans to hold a rally Sunday night at the Convention Center.

“The rally is about calling on Americans to stand up, to exercise their rights to free speech. It’s calling on the churches and church members and non-church people to stand up for issues they feel are important here in America,” Jones said.

He’s also holding rallies in Tennessee, Kentucky, New Jersey, New York ,and California.

He says he wants to encourage Christians to take action on all kinds of issues — from abortion to the national debt and Islam.

Would-Be Koran Burner Pastor Terry Jones

Terry Jones brought his church band from Gainesville and sold t-shirts that read “Islam is the devil”, but he may have booked the wrong sized ballroom at the Tampa Convention Center.

“We are in a pitiful condition in our country and this meeting proves that,” Jones said as he took the stage Sunday night.

Only about 10 people showed up to the 500 seat ballroom.

In an interview with 10 News before speaking to the crowd, Jones expected much more.

“We are hoping, of course, to fill the room up,” he said.

Jones is best known for threatening to hold “International Burn a Quran Day” last month, which drew heavy criticism from many, including President Obama.

Flora Reece from Tampa is one of the few who wanted to hear what Jones had to say. “I supported him in that, even though he did not follow through with it,” Reece said of the Quran burning. “The reason I did is they’ve burned our Bibles for centuries.”

There was extra security inside and outside the convention center on Sunday, but 10 News could not find a single protestor.

This was the start to what Jones calls “Stand up America” rallies.

He’s taking his message of free speech across the country.

“To be honest, we really don’t regret anything. We felt we did what God told us to do,” Jones said of the worldwide attention he drew to Gainesville.

He plans to move his church to Tampa, holding regular meetings by the end of the month.

He says he’ll spend the next couple days looking for a new site, possibly near downtown or the Howard Frankland Bridge.

The Wrong Reverend Wright

[written by Stanley Kurtz:]

A detailed account of these Socialist Scholars Conferences (along with many other events from Obama’s radical past) and the evidence for Obama’s attendance at them can be found in my new book, “Radical-in-Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism” (to be published Tuesday). [...]

That is to say, Obama’s connection to socialist ideologues didn’t end with his recruitment into the ranks of community organizers. It began there and blossomed into a quarter-century of intricate relationships with both on-the-record and in-all-but-name socialists.

I’ve spent the last two years in the archives unraveling the connections. Here are a few.

By the mid-1980s James Cone, Jeremiah Wright’s theological mentor, had struck up a close cooperative relationship with the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). Cone and a prominent follower spoke at the Socialist Conferences Obama attended. Shortly after the 1984 conference, Cone joined the Rev. Wright in Cuba, where they expressed support for the Cuban social system as a model for the United States. Wright touted his Cuba trips to his congregation for years. Obama would have quickly discovered Wright’s ties to the liberation theologians he’d first learned of at the Socialist Scholars Conferences.

The connection helps explain Obama’s choice of Wright as his pastor.

Father Pfleger

Radical Disciple: Father Pfleger, St. Sabina Church, and the Fight for Social Justice $19.95
by Robert McClory

Revealing the story of a white Catholic priest serving a black Chicago parish who has been criticized as a trouble-making maverick, a renegade cleric, and a publicity hound, this book is a fascinating look at the inner workings of the Catholic Church, the traditions of the black pulpit, and what it takes to change the laws in a major American city. This biography concentrates on Father Pfleger’s work at St. Sabina and covers his efforts to build up the parish, his activism, his work to rejuvenate the community, his battles with church leaders, and his strong relationship with the St. Sabina parishioners. This personal story tells how this dynamic preacher and his church community have created social changes to transform their neighborhood, change the face of a city, and inspire thousands.

Publisher: Lawrence Hill Books
Date published: Oct 2010

Father Pfleger

For years, author and former priest Robert McClory thought the life story of Chicago’s Rev. Michael Pfleger would make a good book. He just didn’t realize he would be the one to write it.

By now, Pfleger is widely known. In 2008, he launched himself into the national political scene by mocking Hillary Clinton during the presidential primaries. Video of his 90-second parody: “I’m Bill’s wife. … I’m white. I’m entitled, and there’s a black man stealing my show,” was replayed endlessly on television and YouTube.

For many outside Chicago, it was their first look at a fiery priest better known here for his campaigns against gun violence, drug paraphernalia and billboards in poor communities advertising tobacco and alcohol. But even in Chicago, Pfleger was an enigmatic figure who sparked reactions ranging from adoration to bitter resentment.

“The longer he was in the news, the more it appeared that someone had to write a book about this guy,” McClory said. “Finally, I decided to do it.” [much more at link]

Gorgeous George Galloway

George Galloway, Britain’s answer to America’s Bill Ayers — the former terrorist and friend to President Barack Obama — is back in the news. This past week, the Canadian government refused his request for entry into their country. Galloway shares that distinction with Ayers, who got a thumbs down from the Canadian government, as well.

According to radio talker and columnist Audrey Russo, the former British Member of Parliament is now the head of Viva Palestina (VP), an organization that is now under investigation for giving millions of dollars of aid to Hamas (who is on the United States’ and United Kingdom’s terror lists). VP has also opened branches in Malaysia, Turkey and Arabia, all with radical Muslim populations.

According to a report by Ms. Russo, VP has a record of hostility and provocation, as proven by the conduct of its last convoy (December 2009-January 2010), which was composed of 500 activists from diverse countries. Approximately half were Turkish, and recognized among them were operatives from IHH, headed by Bülent Yildirim (his name is associated with providing support for the global jihad). The IHH, or Foundation for Human Rights and Freedom and Humanitarian Relief, is a ‘humanitarian relief organization’ with ties to Hamas, al Qaeda, and the Muslim Brotherhood.

While British left-wing politician George Galloway continues to throw his trademark verbal jabs at the United States, members of the news media are ignoring the United Nations report released in 2005 in New York City that alleges Galloway received millions of barrels of oil from Iraqi despot Saddam Hussein.

FBI informant Larry Grathwohl [against the Weather Underground]

Larry Grathwohl prepared remarks at October 21, 2010, America’s Survival “Marxism in America” conference

Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen and thanks for taking the time to attend this conference and listen to my message seeking “Justice for Victims of the Weather Underground.” I would like to be able to say that the San Francisco Park Police Station bombing of 40 years ago has been solved and the perpetrators had been arrested, convicted and sentenced. A young police Sergeant, Brian V. McDonnell, died in that bombing.

The charges have not yet been brought in this “cold case” but I can tell you that a law enforcement entity called the Phoenix Task Force is working to solve the murder of Sergeant McDonnell as well as other police officers who died in the line of duty during that period of Weather Underground violence and terrorism.

I was in the Weather Underground as an informant for law enforcement and the FBI. I had returned from serving in Vietnam, where I fought for my country. I was alarmed upon my return to find people like Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn fighting against my country and supporting the communist enemy. I decided that I could continue to serve my country by going underground in the Weatherman movement, under the pretext that I was a disgruntled former serviceman. They bought it. I was there, watching these terrorists operate on U.S. soil from inside one of their communist “cells.” I reported back to the FBI on a regular basis.

Later, after I had to surface when the Bureau arrested some members of my group, my former “comrades” put out a “Wanted” poster on me, calling me an enemy of “the people.” In the end, some of the Weathermen went to prison; others, like Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, escaped justice. Incredibly, officials of the FBI were prosecuted and convicted and later pardoned by President Reagan for violating the rights of terrorists. This was madness. But justice can still be done. And that is why I am here today.

I have recently met with the Lieutenant in charge of the Phoenix Task Force, made up of law enforcement personal, which includes representatives from the FBI, the California Department of Justice and the San Francisco Police Department. He assures me that the effort remains focused and the motivation is to gather the evidence and bring the killers to justice. I should add that the murder of Sergeant John Young by the Black Liberation Army when they attacked the Ingleside Police Station in 1971 has been solved and successfully prosecuted. It was suspected that Marilyn Buck, a member of the Weatherman had participated in this murder, but she was never charged.

A few weeks ago I was privileged to be part of the interviews, along with retired FBI Agent Max Noel, which are being released today for the first time by Cliff Kincaid and America’s Survival. Max is the Agent who placed the hand cuffs on the Unabomber, Ted Kaczyinski. Please take the time to watch these interviews. They are available at http://www.usasurvival.org This is the first time that Max has gone on the record about his work on the Weatherman Task Force. This is the first time you will see what he and other FBI agents found inside a Weather Underground bomb factory on Pine Street in San Francisco that included the fingerprints of Bill Ayers and Mark Rudd.

Remember that Ayers had claimed that he and his associates never killed anyone and never intended to. One of the devices found in the Pine Street location was a voice-activated detonator, meaning that it was designed to be set off when someone said something. One of the photographs of the bomb factory shows shrapnel in the form of nails. Heavy metal staples were also popular. The Weathermen were also making stabbing devices disguised as ball point pens. [...]

Let me set the record straight about Bill Ayers himself. Rather than avoiding hurting or injuring anybody, he was helping the group to which I was assigned plan the bombings of the Detroit Police Officers Building and the 13th Precinct. He specifically stated that the bombs should be placed when and where the greatest number of police officers would be killed. I had no misunderstanding as to the purpose of this action and when I pointed out the fact that there would probably be more collateral damage and deaths, his response was “Sometime innocent people die in a revolution”. I suppose that’s true as long as you’re not one of the innocent people who have to die in Bill’s revolution.

It was to be a bloody revolution that was to culminate with the overthrow of the U.S. Government and the establishment of “re-education centers” for 100 million Americans and the elimination of 25 million people who failed to meet the standards of the NEW order. These “anti-war” activists were actually pro-war on America and its allies. They still believe in the communist “struggle.”

[...] The Weathermen who accuse me of lying never had to appear before a congressional committee to explain what they had done. Wouldn’t it be great if they did? Is it too late? I don’t think so. Let them be forced to testify under oath. It is not too late to seek justice for Sgt. McDonnell, his family, and others who have suffered.

My greatest fear today is that the Department of Justice will protect these terrorists by blocking an attempt to bring them to justice. Consider that President Obama held his first fund raiser at the home of Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dorhn when he was running for the State Senate in Illinois. Do you think there might be some resistance to placing these two people on trial for the murder of Brian McDonnell? These are President Obama’s friends. He and Bill served on a board and appeared at functions together. I’m concerned that the work and efforts of the Phoenix Task Force might be in vain if the evidence ends up implicating friends of the President of the United States. We need public pressure on the Justice Department to pursue justice in the case.

Don’t forget that Holder was involved in Clinton Administration pardons of two Weather Underground members.

[...] Adding urgency to this problem, let me say that we cannot rule out the possibility that remnants of the Weather Underground network still exist, protecting terrorists and facilitating their activities. It is significant that the FBI recently updated its “Most Wanted” listing for Leo Frederick Burt, accused of bombing the University of Wisconsin, on August 24, 1970, killing a 33-year-old researcher and causing $6 million in damage to the building. He is still on the run. Burt was not a member of the Weather Underground but a spin-off group. The Washington Post reported, “the search is heating up again. New tips have flowed to the FBI in recent months, and the bureau is taking advantage of the bombing’s 40th anniversary to bring new attention to the case in the hopes that the publicity might lead them to Burt.”

[more at link]

Unrepentant terrorist Bill Ayers

Green Festival, the nation’s largest sustainability event, returns to the Washington Convention Center October 23-24, with exciting new ways for you to shop green, be inspired, get engaged and give back.

Shop green with more than 300 eco-friendly exhibitors and discover new ways to make smart choices for your health, budget, family, environment and global community. Be inspired by 132 presentations, demonstrations, workshops and activities. Walk through our real organic garden, learn about the Local Food Project and see how easy it is to grow your own food; learn how to create a sustainable green business from experienced green business owners and managers; hear how one family decided to go solar without money and so much more. Get engaged with 125 local experts and nationally-renowned authors, actors, leaders, educators, farmers and visionaries; including: Reverend Lennox Yearwood, Jr., Ralph Nader, Amy Goodman, Gilberto Gil, Patti Moreno, Dean Baker, Bernardine Dorhn, Bill Ayers, Ibrahim Abdul-Matin, Daniel Pinchbeck, Goumbri and Tracy McQuirter. Plus, share a meal with friends in the organic vegetarian food court, and spend happy hour in the local organic beer and wine garden.

Unrepentant terrorist Bill Ayers

File this under, “Only in Higher Education”:

Bill Ayers, of the Weather Underground, has retired from teaching and recently sought professor emeritus status at the University of Illinois at Chicago — where Christopher Kennedy sits on the board of trustees. Kennedy opposed granting the honorific to Ayers, on the grounds that Ayers had co-authored a book dedicated to “communist-minded people, independent organizers, and anti-imperialists,” including Sirhan Sirhan.

Sirhan Sirhan was the assassin who murdered Robert F. Kennedy, who happens to be Christopher Kennedy’s father. Kennedy’s remarks swayed the board, which denied Ayers emeritus status. Naturally, this has caused a dust-up in the groves of academe, where many in the faculty feel Ayers’ politics are “irrelevant.”

According to retired professor Elliot Kaufman, Kennedy — yes, Kennedy — has committed a moral lapse. He “should have recused himself,” Kaufman says. “He tried not to make it terribly personal, but come on — it was a personal issue for him. He had a conflict of interest.”

An assassinated father is a “conflict of interest”? Few things can testify so eloquently to the ethical sewer into which much of higher education has sunk. By that strained reasoning, the widows of miners killed in a mine collapse should not be allowed to testify about mine-safety regulation, either, and Cindy Sheehan should have recused herself from debates over the Iraq War.

Ayers dedicated a good portion of his life to tearing apart the fabric of American society through violence. He supported a governmental system of incalculable brutality, one that is responsible for tens of millions of deaths in the past century, and he seems to have few regrets about it.

To some at the University of Illinois, there is nothing wrong with this . . . but there is something wrong with the son of a murdered man speaking a few polite words against honoring political killings. Although we suspect otherwise, we hope that ethical framework is not as widespread as it is depraved.

former Obama dinner companion Rashid Khalidi

The Palestine Question and the U.S. Public Sphere
by Rashid Khalidi

The 2010 Edward Said Memorial Lecture, the Palestine Center, Washington, DC, 7 October 2010

[a bunch of blather containing 21 uses of the word "Zionist" or "Zionism"]

former Obama dinner companion Rashid Khalidi

Columbia U Creates Facts, Opens Study Center for ‘Palestine’

New York City’s Columbia University, which last year hosted Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the name of its ”academic freedom,” now has decided that “Palestine” is a country and has opened the first U.S. Center for Palestine Studies.

Organizers and participants in the new center implicitly admit that a “Palestinian people,” which former Prime Minister Golda Meir said in 1969 never existed, is not rooted in history.

James Schamus, a Columbia School of the Arts professor who participated in the opening of the center, was quoted by the liberal Jewish Forward as saying, “Palestine seems to be a world of multiple myths, a world of lies. It’s not possible to move forward before we organize the past.… It’s about trying to legitimize a history that really doesn’t exist.”

Nevertheless, Amy Newhall, executive director of the Arizona-based Middle East Studies Association, said the new study center “is a guarantee that history is not lost, that identity is not lost.”

And what is a Palestinian? The new center’s co-director Rashid Khalidi stated that Palestinians are defined as those who describe themselves as such.

Mitchell Bard, author of the “The Arab Lobby” is worried about Columbia’s new study center’s becoming another front for anti-Zionism. He told the Forward, “I wonder if this is going to become the center for anti-Israel studies,” adding that studying something that “doesn’t exist” demonstrates a problem of definition.

The Center for the study of Palestine joins other Columba university departments that have served as a forum for anti-Israeli lectures. [...]

“It does little to assuage my concern that the word Israel’ does not appear once in the Center’s 500-word mission statement, while ‘Occupied Territories’ appears several times.”

the perpetually glum leftist comedian Janeane Garofalo:

the perpetually glum leftist comedian Janeane Garofalo:

Chris Mundy has been ousted as showrunner of the ‘Criminal Minds’ spinoff, leaving Ed Bernero to pull double duty on as head of both ‘Minds’ dramas.

Mundy served as a writer and co-executive producer on the original ‘Criminal Minds’ before being handed the reins of the spinoff. However, according to Deadline Hollywood, CBS was unhappy with the show’s creative direction and brought in Bernero.

The spinoff, titled ‘Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior’ and starring Forest Whitaker and Janeane Garofalo, will begin a 13-episode run at midseason.

the perpetually glum leftist comedian Janeane Garofalo

[interview with SuicideGirls.com:]

And what’s the difference between a gang of street thugs and corporate and political criminals? Money. And how we process it. Somehow Dick Cheney is considered different than any other gang member in East LA, for no reason other than imbued money/power status. And, of course, that guys like Dick Cheney are above the law, and guys in East LA are not. [...]

Yeah. They are sociopaths. Dick Cheney is a sociopath. He has no empathy. He clearly does not feel remorse, and, he clearly has no problem lying. [...]

Exactly. Okay, the Tea Party movement, the Tea Baggers, they are suckers right? But they also are racist. Racist. It’s not a populist movement at all. It’s a racist movement. The first Tea Party was scheduled for Obama’s inauguration day, so clearly they were upset with the job he was doing before he even did it. Never before has anyone asked to see a president’s birth certificate. The Tea Party movement is built on one thing – hatred of the color of the man’s skin and fear of modern multicultural America. I’ve never met more apologists for racists in my life then I have from the Tea Party movement.

But yes, Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, Dick Armey, all these cynics at the top, all these sociopaths at the top – they suffer from what [psychiatrists now] call Antisocial Personality Disorder – which, in behavioral psychology, is somebody that continuously does things that harm society, feels no remorse, guilt, [they're] not tethered to honesty. [...]

Unite through hate. That is what the Republican Party stands for. That’s what they’ve been standing for, more or less, since the Civil Rights era. The conservative movement and the Republican party of the last 40 years has been moving steadily to the right, and steadily to being the party of wedge issues. Because contemporary society has outgrown the Republican Party, so they have to do this. They have to keep micromanaging, and keep inspiring hate wherever they can – fear wherever they can – so that they can manipulate people into voting against their better interest. That’s just a tale as old as time. What is the difference between that and any gang member, anywhere? It’s the same. [...]

Of course not! It’s not about policy. It’s about emotion. It’s all limbic brain. It has nothing to do with actual policy. You can tell a right-winger – whether it be a Tea Bagger or whatever you want to call them – anything but the truth. They’ll believe anything you tell them, but the truth. In fact the truth causes them to become confused and angry. They get quite reactive. They don’t like facts. They don’t like to think of the big picture. They don’t like to be empathetic. They don’t like to see things from many perspectives. They don’t like nuance. It’s all the limbic brain. It’s neuroscience. It’s emotional. [...]

Exactly. They also will avail themselves of medical technology. Say they have a premature baby, they will use every area of medical technology to save their baby but they will still vote against stem cell research. [...]

These right-wingers never ultimately win, because time marches on and it marches past them. If conservatives always won, we’d still own slaves and women would never vote. They never ultimately win – right? But they do a hell of a lot of damage in the meantime kicking and screaming towards a more evolved society.

…Don’t lose faith, or heart. The news and everything focuses undo attention on these people. The majority of the country is not backward like this. It’s a good titillating news story, to focus on these people as if they are legitimate. They aren’t. They imbue them with legitimacy, just like they imbued in the Civil Rights era legitimacy on the people that were beating up Civil Rights marchers. But they’re not legitimate. [...]

[more at link]

Truther comedian Rosie O’Donnell:

This just might be the weirdest celebrity pairing we’ve ever heard about.

“Pirates of the Caribbean” star Keira Knightley, 25, is on board for a modern rendition of “The Children’s Hour,” a controversial play about schoolteachers accused of being in a lesbian affair. Controversial in the ’30s, that is.

Digital Spy reports that Rosie O’Donnell, 48, might costar as Knightley’s alleged lover.

The play is about two teachers at a girls’ boarding school who struggle to keep their romantic relationship a secret from their students and the students’ parents.

Traditionally, the relationship is not absolutely confirmed, but strongly implied. However, the Telegraph quotes one source as saying, “[This version] will be a revival for the millennium.”

It will debut in London next year, and possibly move on to Broadway if it’s successful.

Truther comedian Rosie O’Donnell:

Oprah Winfrey was headed into her “la-di-da years” — her term for semiretirement — when David Zaslav came along and wrecked her grand plan. The queen of TV talk had never met the CEO of Discovery Communications until he arrived at her Chicago office in April 2007 with a proposition. “OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network,” Zaslav said, pitching the notion that they create a cable TV network together. “I don’t want your money,” he told her. “I want you.” [...]

You’ll see a blend of entertainment, education, and “personal growth” content. There’s even a bit of edge: Rosie O’Donnell will have a talk show on OWN. As a co-host of ABC’s The View a few years ago, O’Donnell alienated viewers with her abrasiveness and left the show. Isn’t Oprah worried that Rosie will be too brash and polarizing on OWN? “No, it doesn’t worry me,” Oprah replies. Does she think about it? “Of course,” she says, crisply.

The Oprah spinoffs

In fact, Oprah thought enough about the Rosie risk that she took Freston, Norman, and OWN chief creative officer Lisa Erspamer to see O’Donnell at her home in the suburbs north of New York City. She recalls the June visit: “Rosie said, ‘I know you’re here to assess how crazy I am.’ I said, ‘Basically, yes. I’m doing a crazy check.’ ” Rosie’s children were running around the house and the yard that day. “What I found is that she is so generous as a mother,” Oprah says. But, she says, she warned O’Donnell that she had better behave on OWN: “If you have an issue that’s causing a problem, speak to me, woman to woman, so that it doesn’t become a worldwide issue.”

Truther comedian Rosie O’Donnell:

[some recent entries from the "ask ro" section of Rosie's website:]

teri Writes:

You’ll be back when you have something YOU want to sell!!! same, same, same~shame .shame, shame

teri teri teri

u suk suk suk

KelliK Writes:

Take your site down already. All you do is promote yourself and your projects and your kids. You are a p h o n e y b i a t c h

a n d u r p e r f e c t a # s w i p e

Scott Writes:

Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg were cowards for walking off the set. And Bill O’Reilly does NOT spew hate- Behar does! That is a fact.

BULLSH#T

Lynsey Writes:

I need someone to explain to me the backwards thinking in the states! As a Canadian watching people argue against health care and the mosque is baffling. America is no longer the country to look up to

hmmm

Helene….akaLiveat10am Writes:

Is it true that u may do THE CHILDREN’S HOUR w/ Keira Knightley on Broadway?
http://www.sodahead.com/entertainment/would-keira-knightley-and-rosie-odonnell-make-a-good-couple/question-1292593/

first i heard of it

Lucy Writes:

Do you and your group of haters have anything good to say about this country which provides the freedom from which you can upchuck your venom?

yes
people like u make it icky

mrs p Writes:

You were right Rosie when you were on the view way back when and gave the # of Iraqi civilians and were critized for being off? You were right!
See NYT article:
http://www.nytimes.com/?emc=na

imagine that

Truther Comedian Rosie O’Donnell [Warning: Link to HuffPo]

Rosie O’Donnell added her thoughts to the chorus of commentary surrounding Bill O’Reilly’s now-infamous appearance on “The View” last week.

Speaking on her Sirius satellite radio show on Friday, O’Donnell said that the producers of the show she formerly moderated should have known that the Fox News host would say something incendiary — as he did last week, when his comment that “Muslims killed us on 9/11″ caused co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar to walk off the set.

“What does he do besides incite hatred? What does he do besides that?” she said, adding later, “that’s what Bill O’Reilly does. Why would you book him?”

O’Donnell also said that the atmosphere at “The View” was so strange that “I don’t think it can ever be articulated to anyone who has not experienced it…the fact that Barbara Walters could, and feel that she should be able to, scold the Oscar, Grammy and Emmy Award winning Whoopi Goldberg and the 60-year-old Joy Behar on TV is kind of strange.”

Yosi Sergant

Yosi Sergant taps Able Parris
October 21, 2010 McKinney

Our Studio Artist Able Parris is an artistic fellow. We aren’t the only ones who have noticed. Yosi Sergant, former new media and special projects advisor of the NEA and the commissioner of the Obama HOPE poster by Shepard Fairey, emailed Able personally to invite him to contribute to Re:Form School, a high-profile group art exhibition raising awareness for the need of reform in the American public school system.

Able contributed his piece “The Defeat of Apathy” to the gallery, which opened October 9 in an abandoned elementary school in the Lower East Side of NYC. The event drew thousands of people to the weekend-long celebration.

Re:Form School involved a wide array of people from the community and featured musical guests ?uestlove and Black Thought and, along with Able, featured artists like Shepard Fairey, Marc Ecko (Ecko UNLTD) and Michel Gondry (director of “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”).

Yosi Sergant

The latest in the line of shows Yosi Sergant (previously involved with Manifest Hope and Manifest Equality) has worked on, Re:Form School looks to be another massive group show advocating a good cause. It is open in New York this weekend only. [October 9-11]

http://reformschool.letsredu.com/

Yosi Sergant

Huffington Post post by Yosi entitled:
“Re:Form School — Bringing Creativity To The Process”

“Edgy” artiste Enrique Chagoya

A Loveland church and an artist are working together to restore faith in humanity after a piece of controversial art was destroyed in a city museum.

This is not a statement about the artwork known as “The Misadventures of Romantic Cannibals” by Enrique Chagoya, which was at the center of a dispute about its content and appearance at the Loveland Museum/Gallery. A Montana truck driver now awaits trial, accused of bashing the exhibit with a crowbar and tearing the $3,400 print into pieces.

Rather, this is a positive commentary about a congregation reaching out to better understand what the artist intended and, more so, extending an olive branch in the name of peace. At the invitation of the Rev. Jonathan Wiggins of Loveland’s Resurrection Christian Fellowship, Chagoya has agreed to create, for free, a respectful piece depicting Jesus Christ for the church. He hopes to have the artwork done by the beginning of next year.

Both the church and the artist are sending much-needed messages about respect and acceptance. While Chagoya’s piece did not appeal to many, the church’s actions remind us all that bridging the gap toward better understanding of different perspectives and opinions is part of a civilized society. One need not endorse the art – in fact, one may choose not to view the piece – but the concepts of free expression and respectful disagreement remain essential.

“I hope it’s just a new beginning,” the California artist said. “I hope it will be a happy ending to a very sad controversy.”

ACORN Taker-Downer Hannah Giles

[new website by Hannah's sister Regis Giles:]
Girls Just Wanna Have Guns .com

If you came here looking for info on Regis or Hannah Giles, please also check out this page.

ACORN Taker-Downer Hannah Giles

[ youtube commentary from Hannah's dad, Doug Giles ]

ACORN Taker-Downer Hannah Giles

It started with a tip about someone who was going undercover in Planned Parenthood clinics. She was about to release a new video showing what happened during that operation. Her name was Lila Rose, a 22-year-old anti-abortion activist. While she had made multiple appearances on Fox News the last several years, she had never been on CNN.

Around the same time, we learned that 21-year-old Hannah Giles, who posed as a prostitute to take down ACORN, would be speaking at a Tea Party rally in Searchlight, Nevada. Hannah also had never done an interview with CNN.

Two young activists. Both conservative and part of a growing movement that they say had been largely ignored by the mainstream media.

Investigative Correspondent Abbie Boudreau and I talked about the idea of following these young activists around. If we could gain their trust, it would be a fascinating story to follow for a documentary. It would not be easy.

Hannah was our first interview. Or at least we thought. I set it up through Levi Russell, a spokesman for the Tea Party Express. But the night before we were leaving for Nevada, Levi called with bad news. He said Hannah’s attorney had cancelled the interview because of a pending lawsuit connected to one of the ACORN workers caught on hidden camera. I tried to explain our idea for the project to the attorney, but he would not change his mind.

However, when we got to Searchlight and met Hannah, she decided to do the interview anyway. Abbie asked her for the names of other young conservative activists. And then our project began.

We ended up following Lila Rose, Jason Mattera, Christian Hartsock and Ryan Sorba. Even though Abbie and I are investigative journalists, we kept telling them this documentary was not an investigation. We simply wanted to document their activism. But their distrust of mainstream media kept returning to nearly every conversation. At varying times, I thought the project was in jeopardy. Finally, I think they accepted that we would portray them fairly. But they were still skeptical.

During an interview outside a Planned Parenthood clinic that Lila and her team were protesting, she and I talked about the mainstream media.
“Some of the mainstream media has ignored our message, but some of it definitely has been covered,” Lila told me.
“Would we be considered the mainstream media?” I asked.
“Yeah, you definitely would be,” she said. “Well, a little bit fringed on the liberal side.”

I assured her, as I had done over the past several months, that we weren’t taking sides. The documentary was to be a glimpse into a world we hadn’t seen before – at least not in an in-depth way – and because of that, it was a story worth telling.

Obama HOPE poster artist Shepard Fairey

Shepard Fairey enjoys reaching out to people whose work he admires. When he also forms a personal bond with the person he has approached, he says it feels like “things in the universe are in their correct place.” Which is why the rebellious street artist who skyrocketed to international fame in 2008 with his ubiquitous Obama “Hope” poster is particularly tickled about his budding friendship with actor/comedian/provocateur Russell Brand.

Fairey traffics in the iconography of fame, and Brand, in his just-released memoir “Booky Wook 2,” is obsessed with fame’s machinations and implications. It’s little wonder then that the two men are on the same creative wavelength, but what is striking is the speed with which their personal relationship has developed and the depth of their creative collaboration.

Since they first met at the 2010 Art of Elysium gala, which Fairey designed, they have teamed up on the jacket cover for “Booky Wook 2″; the “Just Say Yes” video in the film “Get Him to the Greek,” starring Brand; and a forthcoming documentary Brand is working on that Fairey loosely calls “the Big I Am.”

Call it an iconoclastic bromance, one that was cemented further when the pair discovered that they were neighbors in Los Angeles.

“We’re both very busy but we try to make quality time for each other,” said Fairey in a three-way call with Brand, who was doing a book tour in the UK.

“We’re expecting the baby any day,” joked Brand. “Now I hang out with his daughters and his wife.” [...]

Despite the men’s easygoing banter, their relationship represents something deeper. Their personal histories are steeped in counterculture rebellion and they have long aimed their artistic arrows at the heart of America’s consumer-capitalist society. The problem is that now that the rebels are the ultimate celebrity insiders, it has become increasingly difficult to rage against the machine.

Together, they have found solidarity and created a fresh quiver of anti-authority symbols to draw from.

“I think the common ground they found is in the conflict of their success,” wrote Jack Bayles, a producer of Brand’s forthcoming documentary, in an e-mail from the UK. “I can’t speak for Shepard but I know that Russell has started to grasp some of the more negative consequences of realizing his dream and is now looking to expand his work beyond some of the more immediate rewards of fame and wealth.”

That’s where Fairey comes in. As an artist he has long espoused what he calls an inside-outside strategy of subversion. Since the late 1980s his brand of guerrilla pop art has sought to take the relevant signifiers of mainstream marketing and branding and deploy them as unsettling outsider-art doppelgangers. His first coup was his “Andre the Giant has a Posse” campaign that appeared to be selling something, but was in fact selling nothing more than its own ubiquity. [...]

Another project that Fairey and Brand worked on together was a pop-up shop in the Beverly Center called “the Free Store.” It contained among other things Fairey’s art, some of Brand’s personal belongings and a dress from Brand’s pop-star fiancee, Katy Perry. People were encouraged to trade an unwanted item of their own for an item in the store.

Fairey designed the shop’s marketing campaign, a process he explained at length over a Diet Coke in his bustling studio. “Marketing promises things it can’t deliver; it’s more of an aspirational idea than a tangible reality,” he said. “So I made some posters that said in very small type ‘You can not’ and then in big type, ‘Buy Love Here,’ and then in small type ‘But you can trade it for the best material substitute.’ It all looked sort of like bold advertising or government warning signs.”

Scenes from that experiment will be used in Brand’s documentary and Fairey’s signs, and others like them, might end up being used as the marketing campaign when the film comes out, added Fairey.

The Free Store helped the men realize the full potential of their partnership as they bonded over the nature of charity and selfishness and the limitations of Marxist philosophy. They were thrilled when people made fair trades and angered when people took advantage by leaving pieces of crumpled paper and taking pieces of Fairey’s art.

“At the Beverly Center we used the landscape of consumer culture to present an alternative to these corporate ideas,” said Brand.

“In the documentary I think he’ll use that to show that a sense of entitlement is pretty pervasive in the culture, but certainly not everyone is like that,” said Fairey. “And he’ll use humor so it doesn’t seem preachy.”

Obama HOPE poster artist Shepard Fairey

Reform School NYC x Shepard Fairey

RE:FORM SCHOOL brings together 150 of our nations most celebrated contemporary artists including Shepard Fairey, Swoon, WK Interact, Munk One, FAILE, Specter, Maya Hayuk, Michel Gondry, and hundreds more under one roof to celebrate the role that imagination, creativity and innovation will play in the process of rethinking, reforming and rebuilding public education in the United States.

RE:FORM SCHOOL, a REDU project, takes place in NYC from Saturday, October 9, 2010 at 10:00 am until Monday, October 11, 2010 at 6:00 pm.

RE:FORM SCHOOL (http://reformschool.letsredu.com) is taking over four-stories of the Old St. Patrick’s Cathedral School in SoHo! This high profile art exhibition, event series, and public awareness campaign is designed to bring together and engage the creative community in the drive to reform the American public education system.

Obama HOPE poster artist Shepard Fairey

Glen E. Friedman x Shepard Fairey

Glen E. Friedman is one of the most significant photographers of his generation. His images of the early Dogtown skateboarders in the late 1970s along with the burgeoning hip-hop and punk rock scenes of the 80s and 90s have made him one of the most important photographers today. With the uncanny ability to capture images of people whose subculture was about to change the world, his subjects range from Jay Adams and Tony Alva to Run DMC, Public Enemy and the Beastie Boys to Minor Threat and Black Flag, among many others. Over the years, Friedman has been able to capture the moments of the movements that defined an era. This has cemented his place in history as an uncompromising, extremely gifted artist.

“F#ck You All”
Opening Reception November 6th 2010, 6-9pm
Showing through December 31, 2010
Featuring the Shepard Fairey Collaborations

Obama HOPE poster artist Shepard Fairey

First and foremost on behalf of the Alto Arizona/ NDLON/ Puente Arizona family I would like to greatly thank all of the hundreds of artists who donated imagery to the Alto Arizona Art Campaign launched this past April. We appreciate your generosity, self determination and commitment to the struggle we face in Arizona battling SB1070, 287G, Joe Arpaio, Russel Pearce, Jan Brewer and HATE. As of now we are working on the next chapter of this campaign which will include a new website and productions of more limited edition prints to be up for sale in the future. The funds generated from the sales of this print (Alto Arizona Girl) will go directly to hire a campaign manager to further organize and take this campaign to the next chapter. We would also like to give a BIG thanks to our friend Shepard Fairey and his crew (Dan, Tina, Kyle, Mike, Olivia, Jen, Jaspr, Debbie) who have been very helpful in the sales and facilitating of this campaign, your help and dedication has been a great help in our efforts for dignity in Arizona. Thanks- Ernesto

In the last year, Arizona’s immigrant and Latino community organized to defend themselves and to uphold cherished national values. They have marched, they have held sit-in’s, they have been arrested, and their efforts have captivated the attention of the nation. Critical to the effort in Arizona has been the voice of the artistic community. Our colleague, Ernesto Yerena inspired literally hundreds of artists- musicians, graphic designers, street artists, and others to donate artwork to the cause. The body of work is an expression of liberation and was designed to lift the voices of a community that was supposed to be silenced by SB1070. Shepard has teamed up with Ernesto once again with the releasing of the Alto Arizona print. The print uses a remixed image from the original collaboration for Immigration Reform campaign of last year. A collection of other art is also available at, AltoArizona.com.

Edition of 300
Signed by both Shepard Fairey and Ernesto Yerena
Releasing 10/07/010 on OBEYGIANT.com

The next print release on ObeyGiant.com will be a portrait of civil rights activist Dr. Cornel West. Check out this video of him speaking about Art and Culture in a Social Movement with the Alto Arizona print.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=783fMZeG8Ac

Although most sections of SB 1070 were temporarily blocked while the federal court challenge continues, other sections- particularly those targeting day laborers- were allowed to go into effect. Meanwhile, Arizona continues to be a laboratory for right wing extremism, and communities of color remain the targets. Racist demagogues have exploited economic uncertainty to scapegoat of immigrants and violate the rights of Latinos. Immigrants continue to live in fear and in anger. But between those two sentiments, there’s courage: courage to resist peacefully, courage to overcome, courage to say, “no!” to hatred fear, and even courage to love the haters.

The people of Arizona continue to need our support. We need others to add their voices to a growing call for justice, and we need additional resources to help organize the community. Until SB 1070 is defeated in its entirety, our partners in Arizona will continue to call on all people from all walks of life to stand on the side of migrant families, on the side of justice. One way to help is to contribute your artwork to the AltoArizona site. Another way to help is by acquiring the Alto Arizona poster.

Mao cheerleader Anita Dunn

Anita Dunn Supports Obama’s DADT Decision

Anita Dunn of the “This Week” Roundtable discusses Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Mao Cheerleader Anita Dunn

October 15th appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”

Mao Cheerleader Anita Dunn

Whoa. That was fast.

Michelle Rhee officially resigned as D.C. schools chancellor Wednesday morning — and a media campaign was ready to go that includes a fully developed website, a Twitter account and Facebook page.

There’s not too much to gleen from any of these at this point other than that Rhee has been preparing for this. Just how long? Mayor Adrian Fenty said that he’s known about her plans to leave for “a couple of weeks.” That would go back to around the time she met with soon-to-be mayor D.C. Council Chairman Vince Gray behind closed doors.

She had enough time to hire the same firm that worked on President Barack Obama’s website, WeLoveDC reports. In the crowd at the news conference Wednesday was Democratic political powerhouse consultant Anita Dunn, who signed on with Rhee in May to help sculpt the chancellor’s image. A good bet would be that Dunn helped shape the content of Rhee’s website and resignation statement, says D.C. political consultant Chuck Thies.

All these signs make it clear that Rhee’s decision to leave didn’t come Tuesday; it has been in the works and she has been getting ready.

the adorable Piper Palin

In preparations for the premiere of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska,” TLC released a trailer for the show (which will air Nov. 14) and is now leaking clips, too. Mediaite reported Tuesday on the first clip, which shows Sarah and Todd Palin fishing with daughter Piper and their niece McKinley.

In a small motorized boat, the foursome take their rods out to a large beautiful lake. First they spot one bear, which inspires a “holy cow” from the girls. Then a mother bear and two cubs come into view. When another bear approaches the little family, the mother bear growls. “Aww, he’s telling them to get the heck out of here,” says a red raincoat-clad Palin, fishing rod in hand.

The two bears start to rumble not too far from the Palins’ boat. “Wow! This is awesome,” Palin exclaims. “McKinley, watch this,” she says to her young niece who is facing the other direction. “I love watching these mama bears!”

After the boat footage, Palin is shown confessional style, speaking to the camera. “What I see in that is what a mom would do, too. Anything and everything, laying down her life for her kids,” she said of the mama grizzly.

But then it’s back to the boat. (Between this clip and the trailer, it looks like the show is going to be mostly Sarah Palin and family vs. the last frontier!) On the water, Piper gets scolded by her mother for doing an impression of a grizzly bear growl. But even without Piper doing her best grizzly, the bears start approaching the boat. Palin is afraid the group will become lunch. And is worried about the fact that boat doesn’t seem to be moving.

“Of all times we’re snagged on a rock,” Palin says. And with that, the minute-long clip is over. Since Palin is currently on a bus tour, we know she survived that encounter. But TLC is still hoping we tune in Nov. 14 to see how the Palins got out of that grizzly bear pickle.

video clip at mediaite

the adorable Piper Palin

…Before hopping on a plane in Sacramento Friday, Sarah Palin called in to Zap2It and explained how Bristol got the dancing gig.

“She had told us just a couple of weeks before the show started,” the hockey mom said. “She said, ‘Mom, “Dancing With the Stars” just called me and asked if I wanted to be on the show.’ I said, ‘What did you tell them?’ ‘I told them I’m not a star, and I don’t dance. Sure, I’ll join the show.'”

Remind you of someone else who joined up for a national engagement without much star power or much experience?

That’s not where the similarities end. Check out the advice Bristol, who turned 20 today, was given from her 9-year-old sister:

“As Piper was listening to Bristol explain to me,” says Sarah, “how difficult the steps were — because a lot of these dances, we had never heard the name of the dances, much less knowing the steps of them — Piper said, ‘I know how you can learn those steps — just write them on the palm of your hand.’

“I’m like, ‘That’s exactly what I would do!’ I told Bristol she should do that for one of the songs.”

Good to see that maverick spirit runs through the family tree. Bristol has already survived the first few rounds of the dance competition, most recently to the chagrin of Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino from MTV’s “Jersey Shore”.

scary Science Czar John Holdren

White House Science Advisor John Holdren to speak at MIT

Dr. John Holdren — assistant to the president for science and technology, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and co-chair of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology — will deliver a lecture at MIT on Monday, Oct. 25, followed by question and answer session. Press are invited to attend.

The topic of Holdren’s speech will be “The Energy/Climate-Change Challenge and the Role of Nuclear Energy in Meeting It.”

scary Science Czar John Holdren

NASA will play a leading part in protecting the United States and the world from the threat of a dangerous asteroid strike, according to letters sent by John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), to Congressional committee leaders on Friday.

Holdren’s letters to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the House Committee on Science and Technology assign responsibilities to the US space agency that go beyond its 2005 Congressional mandate to detect and track 90% of potentially hazardous asteroids with a diameter greater than 140 metres. To date the agency has found 903 of the estimated 1,050 asteroids with diameters of a kilometre or more passing within about 50 million kilometres of the Earth.

NASA will be mandated to notify other organizations, including the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), if a dangerous asteroid is found, and to drive research and development on the capability needed to deflect the rock.

In assigning NASA’s new asteroid defence role by 15 October, Holdren was meeting a requirement of the 2008 NASA Authorization Act. Under the act OSTP is also required to choose an agency or agencies that would protect the United States and implement a deflection, if one were necessary.

Scary Science Czar John Holdren

John Holdren on science in the Obama era

Last night I went to one of those quintessential Washington odd-couple events, where Bianca Jagger in a floor-length leopard-print sheath said some words about research and rainforests and presented a trophy to President Obama’s national advisor on science and technology, John Holdren, on behalf of the Federation of American Scientists. The take-home gift for guests was a reprint of the 1946 bestseller, One World or None, a collection of essays penned by scientists warning of the coming nuclear age.

Holdren talked a bit about the role of science and technology in the Obama administration. He noted the happy uptick in intellectual capital over the Bush years, pointing to the multiple Nobel laureates at the helm of federal agencies, and the administration’s increasing willingness to examine the role of technology in achieving other priorities, such as healthcare delivery and development assistance. But even so, darn it’s hard making progress, he said, in this political and economic environment. Not many big concrete, accomplishments to brag about. No projections on future climate or carbon policy.

Yet, one passing remark gave me some hope: When Holdren took the job, he had expected much of his role to entail educating the president. However, Holdren found, as he put it, “When I go in to meet with the president, I almost never have to explain to him how the underlying technology works. We go immediately to the question of: ‘What should we do?'”

Marxist Truther Van Jones

Temple of Understanding Holds Historic Event

In addition to issuing a joint statement to Robert C. Orr, Under-Secretary General of the United Nations, these international visionaries will commit to taking action both within their communities and on a global scale. They will be invited to form a council for the newly created committee, The Interfaith Consortium for an Ecological Civilization (ICEC), which has been developed by the Temple of Understanding and other organizations in connection with the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP).

Through his key note speech, Van Jones, prominent environmentalist and author of his bestselling book, The Green Collar Economy, will set the stage for a frank, penetrating and informative discussion among the visionary leaders. Imagine a coalition that unites the best labor and business leaders, social justice activists, environmentalists, intellectuals, students, and more – all sharing the burdens and benefits, risks and rewards of the journey to a green-collar economy. Van Jones, Environmentalist.

Juliet, our founder, understood the power of a group for effective action. She would be so proud to see the continuation of her lifelong work to bring people together to create positive change, said Alison Van Dyk, Executive Director.

The conference is being held in conjunction with the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the founding of The Temple of Understanding. The event will be held at the Pierre Hotel in New York City on October 19, 2010. Registration begins at 10 am, conference begins at 11am – 5pm.

Marxist Truther Van Jones

his recent HuffPo column:
“Right-Wing Voter Guide Revolution: What Can Progressives Learn?”

Anti-Capitalist “Story of Stuff” Creator Annie Leonard and Marxist Truther Van Jones

The sixth annual “Connecting for Change: A Bioneers by the Bay Conference,” will be held October 22 through 24 in New Bedford.

Presented by the Marion Institute, it brings together keynote speakers, farmers, families, teachers, students and local citizens for a three-day solutions based gathering filled with informational, educational, and fun-filled events geared toward creating deep and positive change in our communities.

Thousands have already registered to participate in workshops, films, art, and music, and to hear keynote speakers Greg Mortenson, author of “Three Cups of Tea,” and film producer Annie Leonard, among many others.

In addition to acclaimed speakers and workshops, the Connecting for Change conference offers a variety of free family-friendly, indoor and outdoor events, including a farmers’ market, film fest, Open Mic Night, exhibition hall featuring sustainable businesses and organizations, and family programming. [...]

All three days will be interspersed with short films from the Global Oneness Project. [...]

On Friday, Oct. 22, Van Jones, Diane Wilson, Alan Khazei, and Adeola Oredola will speak; Saturday, Oct. 23 features Annie Leonard, Seth Goldman, Antwi Akom, and Michael Ben-Eli; and on Sunday, Oct. 24 the speakers are Riki Ott, Bob Cavnar, David de Rothschild, Nikki Henderson and Greg Mortenson. [...]

Anti-Capitalist “Story of Stuff” Creator Annie Leonard

Of all the questionable lessons our schools are imparting to young kids, the idea that Legos are destroying the planet might just be the most absurd.

“Riding in the car one day with his parents in Tacoma, Wash., Rafael de la Torre Batker, 9, was worried about whether it would be bad for the planet if he got a new set of Legos,” reported The New York Times in May. Where once we dispensed practical advice to children about children about consumerism, “waste not, want not” is being supplanted by the lesson that want a new toy makes children part of an apocalyptic death cult.

According to the Times, Young Rafael’s class had just watched The Story of Stuff, an animated anti-capitalist diatribe by former Greenpeace employee Annie Leonard. The program, which was financed in part by left-wing Tides Foundation, is big hit among among school teachers looking to beef up their schools’ environmental curricula. Leonard claims her video has been viewed by over three million people online, and some 7,000 copies of the DVD have been sold. Another environmental group, Facing the Future, is working developing curricula designed around the program for schools in all 50 states.

What’s more, the Environmental Protection Agency, in conjunction with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, is now paying Leonard to produce more propaganda. Watch this video by Lee Doren of the Competitive Enterprise Institute where he discusses what’s going on. Leonard is now producing videos with your tax dollars aimed telling at six to nine-year-olds their juiceboxes are destroying the planet:

Leonard describes herself as an “unapologetic activist,” and isn’t shy about painting hyperbolic doomsday scenarios for children where corporations and consumerism end up destroying life as we know it. Such anti-capitalist radicalism doesn’t seem to concern many educators. [...]
[more at link]

Anti-Capitalist “Story of Stuff” Creator Annie Leonard

Community conversations on the great issues that shape our neighborhood and our planet.
Please join us next Friday for a special presentation–

Special Guest: Annie Leonard, The Story of Stuff and our Garbage Dilemma. (www.storyofstuff.org)

When: Friday October 22 at 7:00 PM
Where:First Church in Jamaica Plain Unitarian Universalist, 6 Eliot Street, Jamaica Plain, in the Sanctuary
Speakers: Annie Leonard

Come see Annie Leonard in her only Boston appearance!!

Anti-Capitalist “Story of Stuff” Creator Annie Leonard

Friday Video Post: Annie Leonard Discusses Stuff at Penn State

Joe the Plumber

Joe the Plumber, aka Sam Wurzelbacher, was in Texas recently talking about the importance of taking back America and how people can make a difference in this effort.

In October 2008, presidential candidate Barack Obama was blockwalking Wurzelbacher’s Ohio neighborhood when the small businessman/plumber asked that upon his buying a new business, wouldn’t Obama’s tax plan bring additional liabilities that would conflict with his pursuit of the American Dream? It was then that Obama made his “spread the wealth around” comment considered by many as emblematic of a desire to confiscate the hard-earned wealth of productive Americans for redistribution to others who can’t, won’t and/or don’t create similar degrees of prosperity.

As a part of the Americans for Prosperity November is Coming campaign, Joe made stops in Waco, at Texas A&M University and at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Joe the Plumber continues to promote an American idealism message saying “we gotta get back to responsibility, accountability, education – the values we grew up with.”

Lou Ann Anderson, AFP-Texas Policy Advisor as well as the EstateofDenial.com Online Producer, enjoyed visiting with Joe and discussing the current threat additionally posed to the American Dream via probate corruption and estate abuse.

Joe the Plumber

Americans for Prosperity has scheduled an 11:30 a.m. rally today at the Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center.

“Joe The Plumber,” aka Joe Wurzulbacher, and Fox News contributor S.E. Cupp are slated to speak at the rally.
*

According to Jeff Crank, state director for AFP, Wurzulbacher and Cupp will point out wasteful government spending, especially spending that they say Colorado Rep. John Salazar, D-3rd District, has voted for.

The pundits will also speak on “the hostile government takeover of health care and the failed economic stimulus bill,” according to Crank.

The rally — set for the Bob Jackson Room — is open and free to the public.

Abortion Survivor Gianna Jessen [reminder of her election 2008 contribution]

The saline solution was supposed to burn Gianna Jessen to death. Instead, it lit a spark.

The fiery Jessen was a guest speaker at Sauk Centre High School Wednesday where an overflow crowd came to hear her amazing journey from surviving an abortion to being expected to be a vegetable the rest of her life, to running not one, but two marathons and to finally meeting President George Bush.

Now, at age 33, she travels the country to tell her story, to inspire both young and old, and to tell the world once and for all that she is, without a doubt in her mind, “God’s girl.”

“I’m here, alive, by the power of Christ alone,” she roared to the crowd of more than 1,300. The crowd was so large that teenagers who were attending as part of their religion education classes were asked to join Jessen on the stage.

Throughout her speech, Jessen proved she is one of those gifted speakers whom you don’t have to make much of an effort to listen to hear what she is saying.

Her teenage mother was seven and a half months pregnant when she decided to have an abortion, but when Gianna was born alive, she was rushed to a nearby hospital. She said had the abortionist still been at the clinic, she believes she would have been killed outside the womb, smothered or strangled to death.
[more at link]

Abortion Survivor Gianna Jessen

Last week, as part of a fund-raising event held for the Center for Pregnancy Choices of South Central Mississippi, Gianna Jessen, a 33-year-old abortion survivor, shared her touching story with a packed room of almost 400 people.

With her words, she celebrated the center and its mission to demonstrate Christ’s love to women and their families who happen to be facing an unplanned or crises pregnancy. To its credit, the CPC represents a life-affirming ministry whose mission is to save lives and secure futures.

It honorably defends the pro-life position by educating clients and the general public about the physical and emotional complications of abortion, providing alternatives to abortion, advocating sexual purity and sharing the gospel with those who enter its doors seeking assistance.

During her address, she also discussed her Christian faith and pilgrimage after an unsuccessful abortion attempt left her alone, injured and seeking answers to perhaps life’s most difficult question.

[more at link]

Abortion Survivor Gianna Jessen

An activist walked into Grove City Country Club last Thursday wearing jeans and no makeup, but walked out with her audience in her hands.

The vivacious Gianna Jessen spoke at Slippery Rock Pregnancy Center’s fundraiser about everything from government affairs to faith to romance.

Although her traveling schedule had her arriving so short on time that she couldn’t be her best dressed, she had the crowd’s full attention; laughing, clapping and having them cheer about bravery and “no more weasels.”

The story of Jessen, 33, has been compelling to both her critics and admirers; inciting inspiration and anger since her youth, when she became politically active as a result of her rare entry into the world.

“Not many people can say ‘I was born in a Los Angeles abortion clinic,’” Jessen said at the fundraiser. However, her birth certificate–ironically, signed by the abortion doctor, she notes–says just that.

A 2-pound Jessen was born alive after her 17-year-old mother tried to terminate the pregnancy with a saline abortion at 7 1/2 months.

“The baby gulps the saline and it causes the baby to be delivered in 24 hours from being suffocated and burned to death,” Jessen said.

Today, a drug is also used with the saline to stop the unborn child’s heart because, under the old method, “they found so many had been born alive,” she added.

When Jessen was delivered, she would not suffer the usual burns or blindness, however.

“They were trying to end my life,” she said. “I believe the Lord of Hosts was just there. He fought for me. He extinguished the flames with his eternal fire to set me apart.”

A nurse, whom Jessen never met, called an ambulance. “I believe it was an angel,” she said. “If the abortionist were there, he could have strangled me, suffocated me or left me to die.”

That part of the procedure ended under the presidency of George W. Bush, who signed the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act for babies born alive after an abortion.

The White House invited Jessen for the signing of the law in 2002 in Pittsburgh, where Bush said to her: “You are so sweet and I am not going to let you down,” Jessen quoted him.

Never having known a father, “He said something to me like a father that I’ll carry for the rest of my life,” she said.

Jessen referred to him as “my President Bush” who had “courage,” she said. “That was only a year (after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks), before people started calling him ‘stupid.’”

Conversely, when he was a senator in Illinois, President Barack Obama opposed the passing of a state version of the infant protection act four times during his short tenure.

“I think it’s important to understand that this issue ultimately is about abortion and not live births,” he stated during the 2002 senate floor debate.

For this, Gianna spoke out against Obama in an ad that supported John McCain for president in 2008. Obama responded with his own ad, calling the Jessen-featured ad “vile” and “sleazy.”

[more at link]

Israeli soldier kidnapped by Hamas, Gilad Shalit

Report: Netanyahu agreed to release Barghouti in Shalit deal

Saudi newspaper Al Madina Press reported that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had agreed to release former Fatah Secretary-General in the West Bank Marwan Barghouti as part of a prisoner exchange deal with Hamas to free captive soldier Gilad Shalit.

According to the report, Netanyahu conveyed the message to Hamas through the German mediator.

Israeli soldier kidnapped by Hamas, Gilad Shalit

The German mediator in talks on the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit, Gerhard Conrad, is optimistic and plans to continue his efforts until the end of 2010, the Jerusalem-based Al-Manar reported Monday.

The report, which says Conrad received “encouraging sigs from Hamas” during his visit to the region, has not been confirmed by official sources.

Egyptian diplomats told the paper that the mediator has told officials in Cairo he plans to offer new ideas for the negotiations in the near future, which he will present to both sides.

The sources were quoted as saying that although the US and other regional elements are opposed to an agreement, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is interested in sealing the deal in order to “make time for more important and complex issues”.

On Saturday Musa Abu Marzouk, deputy chairman of the Hamas Political Bureau, announced that the mediator visited Gaza two weeks ago and met with senior officials there after holding talks on the matter with Israel.

Netanyahu confirmed the report, but Noam Shalit, the soldier’s father, called it “nonsense”, explaining that the prime minister was trying to relieve pressure placed on him.

Israeli soldier kidnapped by Hamas, Gilad Shalit

Dozens of people rallied across from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Caesarea home Friday, in protest of Gilad Shalit’s captivity.

Zvi Shalit, the Hamas-held soldier’s grandfather, said that he has no desire to meet with the prime minister again, adding that, “Netanyahu claims to know about bereavement, but I ask – does he really know what true bereavement is?”

Shalit the elder took part in a panel held by the protestors outside the premier’s home, under the title “Is Israel doing everything possible to retrieve Gilad?”

Shalit thanked those attending for acting on behalf on his grandson. Earlier, the captive soldier’s grandfather said that “We’ve been hearing about talks for four-and-a-half years… so far, nothing has come of it.

“The prime minister has the exclusive authority to end this. He can – and should – end this in one day. Dealing with Gilad’s case has proved to be a fiasco, despite all the ruled that should have been followed, like the IDF Code of Ethics, the Halacha, etc. The decision is ultimately up to one person and he is faltering.”

Fugitive Child Rapist and movie director Roman Polanski

With his legal troubles more or less behind him (though he will forever be plagued by them) Roman Polanski is getting back in the business of making movies and has added one more actor the solid lineup he has assembled for his next film.

John C. Reilly is joining Kate Winslet, Jodie Foster and Christoph Waltz in “God Of Carnage.” The film will be an adaptation of the hit play by French writer Yasmina Reza (“Art”), and the New York set story (a location the helmer can’t film in, for obvious reasons, and will instead shoot in Paris), follows two sets of middle-class parents who meet for dinner after their children get into a fight at school. Reilly replaces Matt Dillon who was scrubbed from early casting news surrounding the film. Perhaps it’s because he needs to make “Armored 2.”

No word yet on the couple pairings but it’s a formidable set of actors who will be tackling some strong material. Filming will begin in January in Paris and is it too much to expect a late 2011 release? Will Polanski go from legal woe to Oscar glory?

“Red” Ken Livingstone

Speaking at the ABTA travel convention today (20 October), former London Mayor Ken Livingstone told the travel industry it needed to avoid being a “victim of climate change”.

Livingston said he expects to see a “squeeze” on the industry, which he explained as “a constraint on growth in air traffic in the West”, predicting an increase in high-end holidays at the expense of low-cost travel and “cheapo flights”.

He said: “One of the adjustments your industry is going to face is that, as the rest of the world increases their air travel, in the West we will have to constrain ours. There isn’t going to be an energy efficient aircraft.”

He later claimed that “54% of flights out of Britain are of people earning £40,000 or more. It is already a class issue, that’s why I am in favour of improving the quality of what we offer at home”, adding, “we have got to reduce our carbon emissions”.

Addressing the reduction of carbon emissions and preparation for the effects of climate change, Livingstone said: “You need people with the far-sight enough to take a risk and see it through, if we do that, we can tackle the problems of climate change.”

“[The travel] industry will be massively impacted by climate change. It’s important that you think ahead and say ‘I will take a hit’, so we prepare for that, and exploit it.”

“Red” Ken Livingstone

Ken Livingstone today faced calls for his expulsion from the Labour party after he breached strict party rules by campaigning with a non-Labour election candidate.

Livingstone, who was selected as Labour candidate for the 2012 mayoral election less than a month ago, caused consternation yesterday when he joined the campaign trail with Lutfur Rahman, an independent standing against Labour’s Helal Abbas in the election to become executive mayor of Tower Hamlets council.

Livingstone’s actions pose a problem for the new Labour leader, Ed Miliband, who was elected the day after Livingstone secured the Labour candidature last month in a two-way contest against Oona King, former Bethnal Green and Bow MP.

The Conservatives claimed Livingstone’s actions were a direct challenge to Miliband’s authority.

Labour’s rules state that “a member of the party who supports any candidate who stands against an official Labour candidate shall automatically be ineligible to be, or remain, a party member”.

Eight councillors have already been expelled from the Labour party for campaigning for Rahman’s bid to beat Abbas, the current leader of Tower Hamlets council.

Livingstone’s actions infuriated Labour colleagues with one publicly calling for his immediate expulsion.

Tom Harris MP said on his blog that, if Livingstone had campaigned for a rival, “he should be expelled immediately, irrespective of whatever silly excuses he tries to come up with”.

He added: “What I suspect will actually happen is that Ken will mount his defence and the NEC [national executive committee] will bottle it.”

Jim Fitzpatrick, the MP for Poplar and Limehouse who ran King’s unsuccessful bid for the mayoral nomination, said the actions were “extremely disturbing” and should be investigated by party chiefs.

Flanked by Rahman and his supporters, Livingstone said on Monday that the party had made “a big mistake” in removing him as its candidate.

“It took five years to put the Labour party back together after George Galloway defeated Oona King down here,” the former mayor said. “All that was blown away in a moment of madness by Labour’s NEC.”

Rahman was selected as candidate by the local Labour party but the NEC refused to rubber-stamp his selection following a document highlighting a number of allegations concerning both “the eligibility of participating voters” and Rahman’s “conduct”, according to a party insider.

[more at link]

“Red” Ken Livingstone

Ken Livingstone displeased Labour by supporting Lufur Rahman, a controversial candidate for mayor of Tower Hamlets. Rahman was sacked by Labour amid allegations of links to Muslim fundamentalists, but stood as an independent.

So why did Livingstone back him? Could it have had anything to do with Andrew Gilligan being the first to make the allegations against Rahman in a Channel 4 Dispatches film? Rahman’s victory on Friday is one in the eye for Gilligan. He hasn’t been able to count Ken among his fans since his days on The Evening Standard, which contributed to Ken’s demise as mayor of London.

Buffy Wicks

Chicago mayoral hopeful Rahm Emanuel, who left his job as White House chief of staff on Friday, has his main campaign elements in place. It’s Sunday and his website is live —a video announcement about his run is supposed to be posted sometime Sunday to compliment his Monday retail street campaigning in the city. Key staff is in place. Emanuel’s campaign started Google ads running over the weekend.

Exclusive Sun-Times scoop
FAIRCHILD, GIANGRECO JOIN EMANUEL TEAM

Staff news first: Pete Giangreco is signed on as the direct mail consultant–though he will bring a wider portfolio to the campaign. Giangreco is a veteran of scores local, state and campaigns and was a key member of the Obama presidential campaign team. Giangreco is also advising Illinois Democratic Senate candidate Alexi Giannoulias.

The manager will be Scott Fairchild. Fairchild bio…

Scott Fairchild has worked for Congressman Patrick Murphy (PA-08) since May of
2006. He is currently his Chief of Staff. Fairchild managed Murphy’s first re-elect and his challenger race back in 2006. Additionally, he was a Senior Advisor to the Bill Foster for Congress campaign waged to reclaim Speaker Hastert’s seat in 2008. After winning that race he helped manage Foster’s transition to Congress.

AKPD–David Axelrod’s old firm–will be the main consultants handling media and other matters. As I reported earlier, AKPD vice president of political affairs, Buffy Wicks–one of the nation’s top grass roots organizers–a veteran of the Obama presidential campaign–will be a player on the Emanuel campaign.

Philippe Karsenty and France 2’s Charles Enderlin [from the Muhammad al-Dura affair]

It was my great privilege to meet recently another kind of “hero of our time,” one who has nothing in common with Pechorin with whom he differs in two crucial ways. To begin with, he most certainly is not a representative figure of our pusillanimous epoch but a singular presence, very much in the courageous mold of Geert Wilders, who holds the era to account. And secondly, there is nothing of the cynic about him; on the contrary, he is a man notable for his sense of justice, crusading energy, and his belief in the eventual triumph of the truth—a man who expects everything from the future.

I’m speaking of Philippe Karsenty, who delivered a talk in Montreal on October 13 of this year dealing with the infamous Mohammad al-Dura hoax perpetrated by France 2 TV. Karsenty, deputy mayor of Neuilly-sur-Seine and director of the Paris-based analysis firm Media-Ratings, has become justly celebrated as the man who single-handedly defied the entire French media, political establishment and intellectual synod which closed ranks to defend the official version of what happened on September 30, 2000 at the Netzarim junction in Gaza. The episode and its aftermath are by this time widely known, but a brief recapitulation would not be out of place.

[go to link for much more]

France 2’s Charles Enderlin [from the Muhammad al-Dura affair]

Ten years after the blockbuster “Killing of Mohamed al Dura” film was brought to the world by Charles Enderlin under the aegis of state-owned France 2 TV, the book version, Un enfant est mort, is about to hit the shelves…with a whimper. Why?

No one can forget the dramatic “news broadcast” that placed the “dead child” at the feet of viewers worldwide, unleashing waves of Jew hatred on a scale not seen since the Shoah. “A las cinco de la tarde”… 3 PM… shootout at Netzarim Junction… Mohamed is twelve years old… on last burst of gunfire…the child is dead… Blood libel on a planetary scale [link Makor Rishon 2005]. The brief—under one minute—video shot at Netzarim junction in the Gaza Strip on a day of anger organized by Israel’s enemies and dutifully relayed by Western media, has been astutely analyzed, exposed as a fake, dragged into the French courts, defended by Enderlin’s hierarchy and the majority of his French colleagues… What is left to be said?

My email request for a review copy left unrequited, I phoned the don Quichotte (French for Don Quixote) publishing house to ask if I could stop by and pick up a copy. The receptionist–who is apparently also press attaché, editor, publisher, and Enderlin’s bodyguard—replied that it would be impossible. Might I be on a blacklist, guilty of having written extensively about the al Dura hoax? Declining her offer to mail a copy that would arrive, if ever, a week after the October 7 release, I inquired about the launch. Not that I expected an invitation…

[much more at link]

Philippe Karsenty and France 2’s Charles Enderlin [from the Muhammad al-Dura affair]

…Sept 30 marked the tenth anniversary of the Muhammad Al Dura affair. Muhammad Al Dura was a young boy allegedly killed by Israeli gunfire in a skirmish at the Netzarim junction near Gaza City days after an intifada broke out following Ariel Sharon’s provocative visit to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. Video footage of the boy, huddling beside his father behind an oil drum while gunfire raged, went viral around the world, and his name and image soared into instant legend as the new poster boy for Israeli bloodthirstiness.

The image appeared on postage stamps throughout the Muslim world. Bin Laden invoked the name “Muhammad,” softly repeated again and again, in his pre-9/11 recruitment videos. The Ministry of Health in Gaza was renamed for Muhammad Al Dura. In the video of Daniel Pearl being beheaded, the image of Al Dura shimmers in the background. Muhammad Al Dura’s image is today a fixture in almost every Arab home and heart.

But the entire incident was a set-up, 100% staged. The father’s alleged bullet wounds were actually old knife scars. The boy visibly moves in the footage after he was “dead.” There was no blood on the “victims” from their “multiple” gunshots or on the street or wall. No bullets were recovered from the scene. This is but a partial list of the damning rebuttals to the official account.

The cameraman who shot the only footage, freelance Palestinian Talal Abu Rahma, later admitted he had gone into journalism to promote the Palestinian cause. Charles Enderlin, the left-wing Israeli-French Jew who produced it, was well known for his anti-Israel bias.

The Al Dura affair is important because it is the 2000 version of the ancient medieval blood libel against Jews – that Jews harbour a sinister, insatiable lust for the particular blood of non-Jewish children – and because it has inspired other conspiracy-theory “news” items of Israeli bloodthirstiness, notably the staged Rachel Corrie incident and the IDF organ-harvesting myth, that are accepted as truth in the Muslim world (and beyond), just as the odious and demonstrably bogus Protocols of the elders of Zion and other conspiracy theories continue to circulate as fact amongst Jew-haters.

Such myths can only be countered by truth-tellers, but the principal truth-teller in the case of the Muhammad Al Dura story, Philippe Karsenty, has found that where libels against Jews are concerned, truth-telling is an uphill slog. Karsenty, a deputy mayor of Neuilly-sur-Seine and financial consultant, who runs a media watchdog, has made it his mission, and virtually fulltime job for the last decade, to expose the machinations of Enderlin and France 2. His pursuit resulted in a defamation suit against him that he lost, which was overturned on appeal in 2008. None of the facts he has submitted in support of his allegations against Enderlin have ever been successfully contested.

Philippe Karsenty has created a PowerPoint presentation that methodically demolishes Enderlin and Abu Rahma’s fable. Nevertheless Charles Enderlin has had the hutzpa to publish a book, just released October 11, A Child is Dead, in which he stands by his ridiculous story.

Notable in this tawdry spectacle of journalistic treachery is the circling of the wagons by people supposedly dedicated to objective truth-telling themselves. Jacques Chirac likened Karsenty to a “holocaust denier.” France awarded Enderlin the Legion of Honour. Karesenty’s name is mud on innumerable French talk shows. Many French journalists signed a Nouvel Observateur petition denouncing him.

In a recent Montreal appearance, Karsenty said, “I am completely alone in France.” He explains this: “The media do not want to convey the message their colleague lies.”

Media accounts of his triumph are grudging: After his trial, Le Figaro headlined their account of his success: “Karsenty denies he is a strong rightist.” Journalism schools won’t invite him to speak.

At the end of the Israeli satire I opened this piece with, Drek O’Hara asks his interviewers to make sure they note his motto. Which is? “One picture lies better than a thousand words.” When it comes to Israel, ain’t it the truth? Philippe Karsenty is visiting Toronto in mid-November. I hope Canadian media will offer him the respect and support he deserves.

“Safe” Schools Czar Kevin Jennings

Cyberbullying among threats to education, federal official says.

Student achievement won’t improve until all students feel safe at school.

“Kids can’t learn if they don’t feel safe. Period. End of story,” Kevin Jennings, an assistant deputy secretary at the U.S. Department of Education, told a group of 325 statewide educators, law enforcement officials and other agency members who work with youth.

“If kids are unable to focus on school because they are threatened, they will not learn,” Jennings said.

Jennings, who heads the education department’s office of safe and drug-free schools, spoke Thursday of the importance of creating an environment where all kids can learn as part of the Colorado Safe Schools regional training program held at the Pueblo Convention Center.

The two-day training session, which began Wednesday, focused on different aspects of creating safe and healthy schools. [...]

Jennings related his own experience of being bullied while growing up in rural North Carolina.

After a year of “relentless” bullying in ninth grade, Jennings said he decided he wasn’t going back to school for the 10th grade.

It wasn’t until his mother was able to get him transferred to another school that he got away from the bullying and excelled academically.

“I was this close to being a dropout statistic,” Jennings said, measuring an inch of space between his index finger and thumb.

Jennings encouraged parents, teachers and students to become more informed about the types of bullying that occurs, who are most likely to be bullies and victims and how to change the behavior.

Jennings said the Department of Education recently implemented a $38.8 million Safe and Supportive Schools grant program designed to measure safety at the school-building level and to help intervene in schools with the greatest safety needs. [...]
[more at link]

Obama’s Islamic Czar Dalia Mogahed

US polling company the Gallup Organisation has said it will open a centre in the UAE capital within the next ten weeks, following a deal with the Court of the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi.

The Abu Dhabi Gallup Centre (ADGC) will be headed by Dalia Mogahed, the current director of the Gallup Centre for Muslim Studies, and will focus on research into the attitudes of Muslims around the world, and analysis of the social challenges faced by the Gulf states.

“Our vision is for the ACGC to be a major source for cutting-edge research and foresight on the most important challenges facing Muslim societies today,” Mogahed was quoted as saying by state news agency WAM.

The center will initially be staffed by Gallup analysts who will relocate from Washington DC to Abu Dhabi. The Gallup Centre for Muslim Studies will continue to operate in the US.

Obama’s Islamic Czar Dalia Mogahed

“Restarting the “New beginning” – How American and predominantly Muslim communities can get relations back on track”
by Dalia Mogahed

Obama’s Islamic Czar Dalia Mogahed

Muslim professionals, entrepreneurs, and media and marketing executives will meet to share their experiences during the second annual Muslim Consumer Conference on Oct. 30.

From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency in New Brunswick, the focus will be on dispelling negative stereotypes of Muslims by highlighting their contributions to America’s society and economy, according to the conference’s organizers. There are 6 million to 8 million Muslims living in America, mostly in New York, New Jersey, Houston, Chicago, Detroit and Los Angeles and about 150 to 200 mosques in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including South Brunswick, New Brunswick, Old Bridge, Passaic County, Teaneck and Trenton.

The objective of the conference is to create an awareness of Muslim consumers, their buying power and their presence in mainstream media and the advertising industry, and in turn influence companies and Muslim entrepreneurs to develop products and services for Muslims, based on Islamic principles.

“In the late ’90s, much was written about the Hispanic market, and it was lost in the mainstream media without any action until early 2000,” said Faisal Masood, who founded the conference with his wife, Sabiha Ansari. “At this time the ethnic market started to reach a sizable opportunity for companies to target, and today this market stands at $1.4 trillion. American Muslim consumers today stand at $170 billion, according to JWT, one of the largest advertising agencies, and this is expected to grow rapidly as population expands and younger Muslims start working.”

Masood, of North Brunswick, is also the founder of MuslimLink.org, a social media platform that connects Muslim professionals, businesses and organizations. He decided to hold the conference last year after reading a 2007 New York Times article that mentioned that Muslims spend $170 billion in America and that the American Muslim market is highly educated and fast growing.

“This is important because we want to highlight how Muslim Americans are contributing to the growth of the economy and how they are a very important fabric of this society. Muslims are entrepreneurs, doctors, engineers, technologists, scientists, teachers and professors, to name a few. This is not a religious conference, but a marketing and business conference, which highlights the needs of Muslims based on their values and principles and how mainstream companies can take the opportunity to address their needs,” Masood said.

The keynote speaker this year will be Miles Young, CEO of Ogilvy and Mather Worldwide, one of the largest marketing and advertising companies worldwide. Other guest speakers include Steven Pilchak, a general manager for Best Buy in Dearborn, Mich.; Dr. Mehmood Khan, senior vice president and chief scientific officer of PepsiCo; Adnan Durrani, chief halal officer for American Halal Co. Inc.; Tariq Farid, founder and CEO of Edible Arrangements International; Dalia Mogahed, senior analyst and executive director of Gallup Center for Muslim Studies; and Hollywood actor Faran Tahir who played Raza in the movie “Iron Man.”

So-Called “Documentary” maker Morgan Spurlock

American Mustache Institute Names Goulet Finalists: Pat O’Brien, Morgan Spurlock In Running

Today nineteen men share the honor of being named finalists for the Robert Goulet Memorial Mustached American of the Year.

On December 4, one man (and his lip hair) will stand apart when he’s announced the winner at ‘Stache Bash — this year at Al Hrabosky’s Ballpark Saloon.

Dr. Aaron Perlut of the American Mustache Institute tells Daily RFT that his group received more than 100 nominations for this year’s contest. “There were a lot of strong nominees, and it was hard to whittle it down to 19,” says Perlut. “It’s going to be even more difficult to name the Goulet winner.”

Among this year’s finalists are filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, Access Hollywood’s Pat O’Brien, Minnesota Twins pitcher Carl Pavano and many unsung heroes, including Florida firefighter Brian Sheets and fundraiser Dr. Lou Jacobs.

So-Called “Documentary” maker Morgan Spurlock

Barbara Kopple Honored, Morgan Spurlock to Host Doc Awards

The 26th IDA Documentary Awards will present its 2010 Career Achievement Award to veteran filmmaker Barbara Kopple (photo below) at a December 3 ceremony hosted by Morgan Spurlock, the International Documentary Association announced on Monday.

Kopple’s work includes the landmark 1976 documentary “Harlan County USA,” which won an Oscar and is also included in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress, along with the 1991 Oscar winner “American Dream.”

Past winners of the honor include Michael Apted, Ken Burns, Werner Herzog, Albert Maysles, Haskell Wexler, Errol Morris and HBO’s Sheila Nevins.

Michael Moore

Mikael Moore writes about the Times Square bomber and Juan Williams

Michael Moore

Michael Moore Invades South Florida, Answers Questions at Film Fest

Acclaimed scruffy documentarian Michael Moore showed up, clean shaven, to Cinema Paradiso on Saturday night for a sold-out appearance at the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival. Beforehand, he answered questions from reporters (and a smattering of film-dazed Florida socialites) about his films and the state of the world.

Moore let slip that he’s working on his next project right here in South Florida: “There’s plenty of time to write,” he said. “There’s absolutely nothing here that I want to do.” More on that below.

[more at link]

That Dashing Ambassador Joe Wilson and Outed-by-that-Traitor-Cheney Former-Spy Valerie Plame

Valerie Plame And Joe Wilson: Dick Cheney Never Apologized To Us Either

Seven years after top officials in the Bush administration turned their world upside down in an attempt to convince the public to support the war in Iraq, Amb. Joseph Wilson and outed CIA agent Valerie Plame said they still have not received an apology from anyone involved.

“No, in a word,” Plame laughed and told The Huffington Post when asked if she or her husband had heard from any Bush officials. She said the closest thing she has received to an apology is when Richard Armitage, the former No. 2 at the State Department, publicly said it was “foolish” of him to leak Plame’s undercover CIA identity.

The movie “Fair Game” is hitting U.S. theaters on Nov. 5, based on the real-life story of Plame and Wilson, who were at the heart of the debate over the Iraq war. In 2003, Plame was a covert officer in the CIA’s counter-proliferation division, and Wilson was sent to Africa to investigate the alleged sale of enriched uranium from Niger.

The Bush administration, of course, ignored his findings and told the American public that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. On July 6, 2003, Wilson penned an explosive op-ed entitled, “What I Didn’t Find in Africa.”

[much more blather at HuffPo link]

That Dashing Ambassador Joe Wilson and Outed-by-that-Traitor-Cheney Former-Spy Valerie Plame

We may not be getting Sean Penn or Naomi Watts for the Washington premiere, but the people they play — Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame, respectively — are expected to attend Tuesday’s “Fair Game” screening in Silver Spring.

The film follows Plame’s outing as a CIA operative, after her husband Joe Wilson publicly challenged the Bush administration’s intel on weapons of mass destruction.

Washington’s sneak peak comes courtesy of the DC Labor FilmFest, which begins Friday. The screening will be held Oct. 19 at the American Film Institute’s Silver Theatre; tickets are available online. Director Doug Liman is also expected to show. For those missing out, “Fair Game” will open in theaters on Nov. 5.

That Dashing Ambassador Joe Wilson and Outed-by-that-Traitor-Cheney Former-Spy Valerie Plame

Valerie Plame Wilson Warns: ‘Drain the Swamp’ of Nuclear Weapons

Last week, TakePart brought you five Women Who Rock, and all of these women are here at the FAIR GAME: Women Leaders for Nuclear Security summit in Washington D.C.

To kick off the summit, Valerie Plame Wilson, whose story is the basis for the film Fair Game, gave a powerful keynote speech. She spoke about her career with the CIA and how her cover was exposed. She emphasized her work today as a female leader focused on nuclear security.

Here are highlights from her speech:

TakePart’s favorite quote:

Nuclear security is the defining issue of our time. We all know there are so many problems in the world today, but frankly if we don’t get this one right, the rest don’t really matter.

Valerie on the film Fair Game and being exposed while in the CIA:

Tonight you will see the story of a couple of pretty difficult years for me and my family. You will see at the same time I was dealing with the joys and the challenges of being a wife and a mother, I was also a covert CIA operations officer. It was a job I cherished and one that was taken from me in order to push a partisan agenda. But those few years do not define my service. My committment to my country is a lifelong pursuit.

On preventing a nuclear 9/11:

Like the rest of the country, my life changed after 9/11. Just a few days after that terrible attack, as the smoke was still coming off the World Trade Center, the CIA discovered that Osama bin Laden had met with top Pakistani nuclear scientists in an effort to build a nuclear bomb.

As we watched the country come together in an extraordinary commitment, we knew that the goal of the most dangerous terrorist network in human history was to obtain and use a nuclear weapon against the United States. My work at that point in the CIA became laser focused to prevent a nuclear 9/11.

[more blather at link]

That Dashing Ambassador Joe Wilson and Outed-by-that-Traitor-Cheney Former-Spy Valerie Plame

Joe Wilson, husband of outed CIA agent Valerie Plame, kept his criticism of ex-Vice President Dick Cheney and Cheney’s former chief of staff Scooter Libby succinct and serious Wednesday, when he referred to each of them simply as “traitor.”

During a discussion on CNN’s “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer,” Wilson sat beside his wife and harshly described each of the men who were at the center of a scandal that led to the leak of Plame’s identity.

“They betrayed the national security of our country,” Wilson, an outspoken critic of the Iraq War and former U.S. Ambassador said. “By betraying the identity of a covert CIA operative, whose identity is kept secret because it’s in the national interests that the identity be kept secret, in order for her to be able to acquire foreign secrets on behalf of our country.”

Wilson also later went on to say that he didn’t know if former President Bush was a traitor as well.

“I don’t know what he knew,” Wilson said. “We were unable to get that in criminal court and were unable to get there in civil court because the Supreme Court denied us the right to go ahead pursue civil charges against him or a civil case against him.”

[a bit more blather and a video clip at HuffPo link]

About these ads

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s