Tuesday, April 17, 2012

BAUAW NEWSLETTER--TUESDAY, APRIL 17, 2012



Tax Day Flash Mob
"Get your wars off our backs!"

Tuesday, April 17, 2-5:00 P.M.
2:00 P.M. -- Oakland City Hall
3:00 P.M. -- Moving around City Center
4:00 P.M. -- Oakland Federal Building
1301 Clay Street

Taxes for education NOT militarization! Oakland youth say NO to the burden of wars that only serve the rich.

For Information: BAY-Peace
510-863-1737
baypeace@baypeace.org

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"It's a two class country and the wrong class is running it!" -From a Soldier of Solidarity

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MAY DAY 2012

OCCUPY WALL STREET STANDS IN SOLIDARITY WITH CALLS FOR:

ON MAY DAY -- WHEREVER YOU ARE -- WHOEVER YOU ARE

NO WORK! NO CHORES! NO BANKING! NO SHOPPING! NO SCHOOL!

A DAY WITHOUT THE 99 PERCENT -- A GENERAL STRIKE AND MORE!!

TAKE THE STREETS!

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Bay Area United Against War Newsletter
Table of Contents:
A. EVENTS AND ACTIONS
B. VIDEO, FILM, AUDIO. ART, POETRY, ETC.
C. SPECIAL APPEALS AND ONGOING CAMPAIGNS
D. ARTICLES IN FULL

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A. EVENTS AND ACTIONS

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Subject: From code pink: Occupy Oakland ENDORSES our NO WAR ON IRAN
April 17th Action!!!
NO WAR ON IRAN ACTION: Occupy & War(s)
April 17th, Tuesday, 12:00 noon - 5pm
Oakland Federal Building

In solidarity and action,
Xan Sam Joi
DISARM DISARM DISARM
work for peace; hold all life sacred; eliminate violence
www.codepinkjournals.blogspot.com

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April 24 - Occupy the Justice Department to Free Mumia NOW!

ON MUMIA'S BIRTHDAY
OCCUPY the JUSTICE DEPARTMENT: TRANSFORM THE WORLD! April 24, 11AM -- Washington DC
--Next Stop: Mumia's Freedom

On December 9, 2011 at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, over 1,100 people gathered to mark the 30th anniversary of Mumia Abu-Jamal's incarceration. Archbishop Desmond Tutu asked our nation to "rise to the challenge of reconciliation, human rights, and justice" and called for Mumia's "immediate release." And when Frances Goldin--Mumia's literary agent--called on the audience to OCCUPY the Justice Department, the call was met with a roar of excitement.

Join Danny Glover, M1 of Dead Prez, Frances Fox Piven, Normal Finkelstein and others in a non-violent civil disobedience action or join our large-scale, spirited rally at the U.S. Department of Justice, which will mark Mumia's 58th birthday. Your pledge to engage in an act of civil disobedience (CD) is critical to ensuring news coverage of the case of this imprisoned, radical journalist and our broader demands. If you cannot commit to CD, pledge to be at the demonstration.

Pledge to Occupy the Justice Department, download the flyer, and get more information:
http://occupythejusticedepartment.com/

On April 24, we will breathe life into the old labor slogan: "An injury to one is an injury to all." On that day we will say that we are all Mumia, we are all Trayvon Martin, we are all immigrants, we are all prisoners, we are all Bradley Manning, we are all poor, we are all Palestinian, we are all Troy Davis, we are all political prisoners, we are all occupiers!!!

WE DEMAND

1. Release Mumia Abu-Jamal
2. End mass incarceration
3. Jobs, Education, & Health Care. NOT JAILS!
4. End solitary confinement & stop torture
5. End the racist death penalty
6. Hands off immigrants
7. Free all political prisoners

http://iacenter.org/prisoners/mumia/april_24_occupy_justice_free_mumia_now_4_16_12/

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Drone Summit: Killing and Spying by Remote Control

April 28-29, 2012 - Washington, DC


The peace group CODEPINK and the legal advocacy organizations Reprieve and the Center for Constitutional Rights are hosting the first international drone summit.

On Saturday, April 28, we are bringing together human rights advocates, robotics technology experts, lawyers, journalists and activists for a summit to inform the American public about the widespread and rapidly expanding deployment of both lethal and surveillance drones, including drone use in the United States. Participants will also have the opportunity to listen to the personal stories of Pakistani drone-strike victims.

Time: 9:00am-9:00pm
Location: 900 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001

Register now.

On Sunday, April 29 we will have a strategy session to network, discuss and plan advocacy efforts focused on various aspects of drones, including surveillance and targeted killings.

Time: 10:00am-4:00pm
Location: 100 Maryland Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20001
Sunday’s session is for representatives of organizations and individuals who want to be actively involved in this work. If you are interested in attending, please email Ramah Kudaimi at rkudaimi@gmail.com.

Topics will include:
-the impact of drones on human lives and prospects for peace
-the lack of transparency and accountability for drone operations, including targeted killings
-disputed legality of drone warfare
-the future of domestic drone surveillance
-drone use along U.S. borders.

Speakers will include:
-Jeremy Scahill, award-winning investigative journalist
-Clive Stafford Smith, director of UK legal group Reprieve that represents drone victims
-Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control
-Maria LaHood, attorney with Center for Constitutional Rights
-Shahzad Akbar, attorney with Pakistani Foundation for Fundamental Fights
-Amna Buttar, member of the Provincial Assembly of Punjab in Pakistan
-Chris Woods, The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
-Sarah Holewinski, director of Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict (CIVIC)
-Hina Shamsi, ACLU national security expert
-Jay Stanley, ACLU privacy expert
-Tom Barry, drone border expert with Center for International Policy
-David Glazier, law professor who served 21 years as a US Navy surface warfare officer
-Amie Stepanovich, legal counsel at Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)
-Trevor Timm, activist at Electronic Frontier Foundation
-Peter Asaro and Noel Sharkey from the International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC).

Endorsed by the Center for International Policy, the Fellowship of Reconciliation, Global Exchange, Iraq Veterans Against the War, Muslim Peace Coalition-USA, Nonviolence International, Peace Action, United For Peace and Justice, Veterans for Peace, Voices for Creative Nonviolence, the Washington Peace Center and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.

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Freedom Socialist 2012 Presidential Campaign
VoteSocialism.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contacts:
Toni Mendicino, 415-730-2917, t_mendicino@yahoo.com
Mary Ann Curtis, 323-610-2479, curtism59@aol.com

Freedom Socialist Candidate for U.S. President Tours California in April

Durham/López campaign takes pride in working class roots and says it
offers voters a means to protest the "rigged political system."

Stephen Durham, who is vying for the Peace and Freedom Party (PFP) nomination in the
California presidential primary, will campaign in the state from April 12 to May 2. Calling his whistle stop tour the "un-millionaire campaign," Durham will speak at public forums, walk union picket lines, take part in immigrant rights marches on May Day and talk with voters in Santa Cruz, Oakland, San Francisco, Sacramento, and Los Angeles.

Durham is the New York City organizer of the Freedom Socialist Party (FSP), writes for
the Freedom Socialist newspaper and works out of the FSP's storefront in Harlem. A
member of the party's National Committee, Durham is fluent in both Spanish and Portuguese and frequently represents the organization in Latin America and the Caribbean where he collaborates with socialists, unionists, feminists and queers.

His running mate, Christina López, is a longtime feminist and immigrant rights advocate who is co-founder of Sisters Organize for Survival, a Washington state group that is fighting state budget cuts that affect women, the poor and workers, especially those in the public sector.

Durham to speak first in Santa Cruz on April 14

Durham will kick off his tour at a Presidential Candidate Forum hosted by the Peace and Freedom Party on Saturday, April 14, 7:00pm at the Resource Center for Nonviolence, 612 Ocean St., Santa Cruz. (see Durham's complete California itinerary below).

California is unusual in that the Peace and Freedom Party, which has a socialist platform, also has ballot status. In other states, Durham and López are running a write-in campaign to "give voters a chance to register a protest against an election machine run by millionaires and billionaires." Restrictive federal ballot access laws differ from state-to-state and are a stumbling block for many small parties.

Durham points to the fact that barely half of all eligible voters cast ballots in the 2008 presidential election. "Today, more people identify as independents than as either Republican or Democrat because neither party represents workers, youth, women, people of color and the millions of people without jobs and housing.'

The "real" socialists

Durham and López call their campaign "the real socialist alternative," as opposed to
President Obama who is often accused of being a socialist by conservatives.

Based on a theme of "vote for the greater good, instead of the lesser evil," their platform includes: a massive jobs program funded by dismantling the Pentagon, closing U.S. military bases around the world and nationalizing major industries under workers control; free, quality multicultural education through college; ending the war on drugs, police spying and racial profiling; an end to discrimination based on race, gender, age, nationality, sexuality orientation immigration status, and physical ability; safeguarding freedom of speech and association; and heavily taxing the super-rich, among other things.

The candidate's California connection

Durham is returning to his California roots with this tour. He grew up in southern California and was radicalized as a student and campus worker at the University of California at Berkeley (UCB) where he took part in the student movement to end the Vietnam War and was a pioneer in the fight for gay rights. While at UCB, he stood with students of color in the difficult battle for Third World Studies. A resident of Los Angeles in the 1970s and '80s, he led efforts with other left groups to defend immigrant rights and oppose police brutality. His work as a waiter led him to become a militant with the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees union.

The fight to get Durham's name on the California primary ballot

In early February, a controversy arose when California Secretary of State Debra Bowen
released the names of presidential candidates to be listed for the June 5 primary and
omitted two of four candidates submitted by the Peace and Freedom Party, including
Durham. On February 28, with public pressure mounting and lawsuits in the works, Bowen
added Durham to the primary ballot.

Civil liberties attorney Robert Barnes was preparing to file suit against Bowen in federal district court on behalf of Durham, if Bowen had not changed her mind. In a statement to the media, Barnes noted the importance of protecting minority views: "If the Secretary of State in the past could have decided which candidate they considered viable," he wrote, "abolitionist parties may have never found their voice, feminist voices never found their platform, civil rights advocates and war opponents never found their audience."

California endorsers of the "un-millionaire campaign

Durham and López are gathering endorsements for their campaign. Among the California
supporters are: James Lafferty, Executive Director, Los Angeles National Lawyers Guild;

Richard Brown, ex-Black Panther, co-defendant of the San Francisco 8, co-founder of
the Committee for the Defense of Human Rights; Puerto Rican Alliance of Los Angeles;
Tanya Smith, past president of UPTE-CWA 9119, Local 1, Berkeley; Moisés Montoya,
member of Occupy Oakland Labor Solidarity Work Group; Merle Woo, earlier Peace and
Freedom Party candidate for California governor; and National Radical Women.

Durham's tour is sponsored by the Freedom Socialist 2012 Presidential Campaign
Committee, www.VoteSocialism.com.

To schedule a California interview or speaking appearance, contact Toni Mendicino, Bay
Area campaign coordinator, at 415-730-2917 or Mary Ann Curtis, Los Angeles campaign
coordinator, at 323-610-2479. For all other requests, contact Doug Barnes, national
campaign coordinator, at 323-610-2479 or dbarnes333@gmail.com.

Durham's California Itinerary

Northern California

Sunday, April 15, 2:00-5:00pm
Meet the candidate in Oakland at a "Un-millionaire House Party"
3033 Sylvan Ave (at Maple, near Fruitvale BART), Oakland
Sponsor: Freedom Socialist 2012 Presidential Campaign Committee
For info or to arrange rides from BART: 415-730-2917

Monday, April 16, 6:30pm
Durham will take part in a Sacramento Peace and Freedom Party "Meet and Greet"
with other Presidential and U.S. Senate candidates
Place to be announced.
Sponsor: Peace and Freedom Party Sacramento County Central Committee
For location call: C.T. Weber at 916-320-9186 or 916-422-5395

Thursday, April 19, 6:00-9:00pm
Talk with Durham over tasty morsels and delicious libations at an
"Un-millionaire Campaign Open House and Reception"
New Valencia Hall, 747 Polk Street (at Ellis Street), San Francisco
Sponsor: Freedom Socialist 2012 Presidential Campaign Committee
For info: 415-730-2917

Southern California

Saturday, April 21, 2:00-4:30pm
"American Third Parties Presidential Debate"
Echo Park United Methodist Church
1226 N. Alvarado St., Los Angeles
Sponsor: The Maggie Phair Institute
www.phairinstitute.org
For tickets: 323-732-6416

Sunday April 22, 1:00-4:00pm
"The Party of the 99%, Our Candidates and Issues Forum"
Peace Center West, 3916 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City
Sponsor: Peace and Freedom Party, Los Angeles County Central Committee
For info: 323-610-2479

Saturday, April 28, 3:00-7:00pm
Enjoy finger licking good BBQ and talk with the candidate at a "Un-millionaire BBQ Party"
5121 South Van Ness Avenue, Los Angeles
Sponsor: Freedom Socialist 2012 Presidential Campaign Committee
For info: 323-610-2479

Northern California campaign headquarters
New Valencia Hall, 747 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109
415-864-1278 - bafsp@earthlink.net - VoteSocialism@gmail.com

Southern California campaign headquarters
Solidarity Hall, 2170 W. Washington Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90018
323-732-6416 - fspla@earthlink.net - VoteSocialism@gmail.com

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Five Days for the Cuban Five
April 17 through April 21
Washington, D.C.

Dear Bonnie,

The decades long war against Cuba—including the economic blockade and CIA sponsored terrorist actions, assassinations and subversion—is opposed by most people in the United States. But it won't end unless the people act. A first step would be the release of the Cuban Five, who have suffered so long simply for trying to thwart terrorist actions against their people and their country. We need to take action now and in the coming months to demand that these five men be released and allowed to rejoin their families in Cuba.

From April 17 to April 21, there will be very important actions in Washington, D.C., in support of the efforts to win the release of the Cuban Five.

The actions are initiated by the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban Five.

To reserve a $5 bus ticket
from NYC to DC for the Saturday action at the White House:

(917) 945-9877 or (718) 601-4751

On Saturday, April 21, there will be a picket/rally at the White House urging President Obama to take action to remedy the unjust incarceration of the Five. Chartered buses will be coming from New York City to Washington, D.C. The cost of a round trip bus ticket is just $5.

A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
http://www.AnswerCoalition.org/
info@AnswerCoalition.org
National Office in Washington DC: 202-265-1948
Boston: 857-334-5084 | New York City: 212-694-8720 | Chicago: 773-463-0311
San Francisco: 415-821-6545| Los Angeles: 213-251-1025 | Albuquerque: 505-268-2488

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HRC Action Alert - Abusive guards in the solitary unit at Frackville

We need you on Monday Apirl 16th to make these calls.

Action = Change

CI Frackville: 570-874-4516; ask for Superintendent Collins, or Deputy Supts. Kovalchik or Lorady.
Secretary Wetzel: 717-975-4918

"Your phone call tells the prisoners that they are not alone. It also tells the Pennsylvania DOC that will will not let them deny our friends and family basic human rights and dignity. Long term solitary and Restrictive Housing Units are instruments of torture and must be ended" Noelle Hanrahan Prison Radio

http://www.hrcoalition.org/

Please take a moment on Monday to make phone calls, write letters, and speak out for the human rights of those struggling against abuse and terror in PA solitary units.

For the last year, the Human Rights Coalition has received more than a dozen reports from prisoners in State Correctional Institution (SCI) Frackville's Restricted Housing Unit (RHU) that Sergeant Wickersham and prison guard Schaeffer are being allowed to perpetrate routine human rights violations against prisoners with the knowledge of top officials at the prison. Multiple reports from prisoners, some of themsummarized in our abuse logs, indicate that these two guards regularly deprive prisoners of food, showers, yard, and state-issue items; issue falsified misconducts against those who speak out or file grievances in order to sentence them to more time in solitary confinement; target prisoners of color; and threaten further retaliation and even physical abuse.


A few weeks ago, five prisoners in the RHU staged a hunger strike for several days, demanding that Wickersham and Schaeffer be removed from the unit. Despite multiple grievances being filed against them, calls from outside support people, and the non-violent hunger strike, Superintendent Collins remains unwilling to acknowledge--let alone remedy--the problems created by these guards.

This pattern of abuse, harassment, and deprivation is not uncommon in PA solitary units or others around the country. The dehumanizing psychological impact on prison staff has been noted by leading researchers on the subject, with one concluding that staff "become accustomed to and numb to the behavior of isolated inmates," causing the development of a "callous and cynical" attitude amongst staff that creates an atmosphere where abuse is rampant. HRC has documented several hundred reports of torture, abuse, terror, starvation, deprivation, racism and dehumanization in the solitary units of PA, all enabled by this culture of callousness. The U.S. Department of Justice is currently investigating unconstitutional practices in the solitary units at SCI Cresson in the PA DOC.

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, Juan Mendez, has recently called for "an absolute prohibition on solitary confinement exceeding 15 consecutive days" due to the severe harm inflicted by such drastic social isolation and sensory deprivation.

Join the Human Rights Coalition and supporters on Monday, April 16--all day--and call SCI Frackville and demand that Wickersham and Schaeffer be removed from the RHU immediately.

SCI Frackville: 570-874-4516; ask for Superintendent Collins, or Deputy Supts. Kovalchik or Lorady.
Secretary Wetzel: 717-975-4918

Talking Points:

Ask them 1) how many complaints they have received about Wickersham and Schaeffer? 2) Why do they continue to keep these guards in the RHU with all of the complaints? 3) Do they support deprivation of food and showers as a disciplinary tactic?

Demand that 1) These two guards be removed immediately; 2) all misconduct reports authored by them be reviewed and dismissed if no evidence exists to support them, and that prisoners have their RHU time reduced; 3) Central Office must conduct an external investigation and publicize the results.

Remember to help Prison Radio keep bringing it. We need your solidarity and your donations.

Donate to Prison Radio to keep us on the air!

www.prisonradio.org

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Stand with Bradley Manning during the April 24-26 hearing
http://ymlp.com/zKyp5L

Write to Bradley Manning at:
Bradley Manning #89289
830 Sabalu Road
Fort Leavenworth, KS 66027
Bradley Manning Support Network:
http://www.bradleymanning.org/
Courage to Resist
484 Lake Park Ave. #41
Oakland, CA 94610
510-488-3559
couragetoresist.org

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6 Ways to Get Ready for the May 1st GENERAL STRIKE
by OccupyWallSt
Yesterday, 60,000 marched on Madison to mark the one-year anniversary of the passage of Governor Scott Walker's drastic dismantling of collective bargaining rights for public employees. Last year, Walker's attacks on labor rights sparked massive protests that saw hundreds of thousands occupy the Wisconsin capital building. Their actions prefigured Occupy Wall Street and inspired countless others to take a stand against economic inequality, political injustice, and the tyranny of the 1% enforced through politicians and banksters alike.

This is just one example that people across the globe are actively resisting attacks on the 99%. This year has already seen the largest-ever strike on record in India, hundreds of thousands marching for democracy in Bahrain, general strikes in Montreal and Spain where students once again occupied public space in protest of the austerity measures and spending cuts being enforced by the European banking elite, massive uprisings in the streets of Moscow, and more. Even in the United States, the movement grows. The corporate media claims that Occupy's strength is waning, but they are merely in denial. During the coldest months of this year, the United States has already seen more revolutionary momentum than it has in decades.

This winter, we refocused our energies on fostering ties with local communities, saving homes from corrupt banks and jobs from greedy corporations, and building and expanding our horizontal infrastructure. This #GlobalSpring, we will take the streets again. On May 1st, Occupy Wall Street has called for a General Strike. We are calling on everyone who supports the cause of economic justice and true democracy to take part: No Work, No School, No Housework, No Shopping, No Banking - and most importantly, TAKE THE STREETS!

We are getting ready. Planning is already underway in dozens of cities. Labor organizers, immigrants' rights groups, artists, Occupiers, faith leaders, and more have all joined in the discussion to get ready. Now, all we need is you. Keep reading to find out how you can get involved!

May 1st, also known as International Workers' Day, is the annual commemoration of the 1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago, when Chicago police fired on workers during a General Strike for the eight-hour workday. In many countries, May 1st is observed as a holiday. But in the United States, despite the eventual success of the eight-hour-workday campaign, the holiday is not officially recognized. In spite of this, May Day is already a powerful date in the U.S. In 2006, immigrant's rights groups took to the streets in unprecedented numbers in a national "Day Without An Immigrant" - a general strike aimed at proving the economic power of immigrants in the U.S. At least one million people marched in Chicago and Los Angeles alone. Hundreds of thousands more marched throughout cities across the U.S.

Now, in response to call-outs from Occupy Los Angeles, Occupy Chicago, Occupy Oakland, and other General Assemblies and affinity groups, the Occupy Movement is preparing to mobilize a General Strike this May 1st in solidarity with struggles already underway to defend the rights of workers, immigrants, and other communities who are resisting oppression. Dozens of Occupations in cities and towns throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia have already endorsed May Day. Here is just a taste of events in the works for New York City:

* 8am-4pm: Midtown action staging zone in Bryant Park. * Disruptive actions in midtown all day! Hit the 1% where they live and prevent them from getting to work. Let's make this a Day Without the 1%, as well! * Family friendly, free food, a really, REALLY free market, skillshares, workshops, lectures, art, fun and more! * 4pm: March to Union Square for solidarity march * 5:30pm: Solidarity march from Union Square to Wall St. * 7pm: March to staging area for evening actions

And this is just the beginning. To quote the ConfederaciÃ_n Nacional del Trabajo, a major Spanish union, who recently called for a national General Strike in Spain on March 29th to protest labor reforms:

For the CNT, the strike on March 29 must be only the beginning of a growing and sustained process of mobilization, one which includes the entire working class and the sectors that are most disadvantaged and affected by the capitalist crisis. This mobilization must put the brakes on the dynamic of constant assaults on our rights, while laying the bases for the recovery and conquest of new social rights with the goal of a deep social transformation.

None of this would be possible without the grassroots support of everyday organizers who volunteer their time to grow the movement against Wall Street greed and political corruption. Here are eight simple things you can do to help advance the cause of equity for all:

[1] Work With Your Local Occupy: There are hundreds of Occupy groups still holding regular meetings and events. Chances are, there's one nearby. (And if there isn't yet - it's easy to start one!) General Assemblies are open to everyone, and everyone has a voice in the consensus planning process. So find your nearest Occupation and go to a GA! If they haven't already endorsed the General Strike, propose it to the group and start planning marches, distributing fliers, and forming direct action groups.

[2] Spread the Word On Social Media: Follow #M1GS, @OWSMayDay, @OccupyWallSt, and @OccupyGenStrike on Twitter. Also be sure to RSVP on Facebook and follow facebook.com/OccupyGeneralStrike. You can also look for city-specific events, like these from Chicago and Detroit.

[3] Start an Affinity Group: You can take action on your own. All you need are a few friends. Affinity groups are groups of people who know each other and come together autonomously for a particular action. Find a few people who are interested in helping you out on a project you have in mind - whether it's making fliers and literature to distribute, or shutting down a Wall Street bank in your hometown. Get creative, and get to work! (Here's a hint: OccuPrint collects, prints, and distributes posters from the worldwide Occupy movement, and they have a ton of amazing General Strike posters!)

[4] Join the General Strike Conference Calls: InterOccupy hosts regular calls to organize May 1st activities. Check out their schedule and join in the conversation!

[5] Talk to Labor: Due to federal laws, most unions are forbidden from organizing strikes for political reasons. However, unions and labor groups are still some of our strongest allies. During last year's General Strike in Oakland, many unions encouraged their workers to take the day off or attend demonstrations after work. Not long after Occupy Oakland shut down ports in solidarity with striking Longshoreman, their employers caved to the union's demands in a new contract. Get in touch with local unions and labor organizations, let them know about the plans for a General Strike, find out what they're working on and how you can help, and encourage them to let their members know about May 1st and get involved in organizing directly.

[6] Organize Your Workplace, Campus, or Community: If you're a unionized worker, encourage your union to support the General Strike. Whether your workplace is union or not, you can encourage co-workers to take a sick day on May 1st. If you can't afford to lose out on pay, that's okay - there will be plenty of celebrations, marches, and direct actions throughout all hours of the day. Invite your community to attend. If you're a student at a high school or college, spread the word to walk-out of class on May 1st. If you're not a worker or student, organize your friends!

More information: [MayDayNYC.org] | [OccupyMay1st.org] | [StrikeEverywhere.net] | [NYC General Assembly - May Day]

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Occupy Oakland Call for Participation in a May 1, 2012 Global General Strike

Occupy Oakland decides to participate in the Global General Strike on May Day!!!

The Occupy Oakland General Assembly passed the proposal today!

Occupy Oakland Call for Participation in a May 1, 2012 Global General Strike

The general strike is back, retooled for an era of deep budget cuts, extreme anti-immigrant racism, and massive predatory financial speculation. In 2011, the number of unionized workers in the US stood at 11.8%, or approximately 14.8 million people.

What these figures leave out are the growing millions of people in this country who are unemployed and underemployed. The numbers leave out the undocumented, and domestic and manual workers drawn largely from immigrant communities. The numbers leave out workers whose workplace is the home and a whole invisible economy of unwaged reproductive labor. The numbers leave out students who have taken on nearly $1 trillion dollars in debt, and typically work multiple jobs, in order to afford skyrocketing college tuition. The numbers leave out the huge percentage of black Americans that are locked up in prisons or locked out of stable or secure employment because of our racist society.

In December of 2011,Oakland's official unemployment rate was a devastating 14.1%. As cities like Oakland are ground into the dust by austerity, every last public dollar will be fed to corrupt, militarized police departments in order to contain social unrest. On November 2 of last year, Occupy Oakland carried out the first general strike in the US since the 1946 Oakland general strike,shutting down the center of the city and blockading the Port of Oakland. We must re-imagine a general strike for an age where most workers do not belong to labor unions, and where most of us are fighting for the privilege to work rather than for marginal improvements in working conditions. We must take the struggle into the streets, schools, and offices of corrupt local city governments. A re-imagined general strike means finding immediate solutions for communities impacted by budget cuts and constant police harassment beyond changing government representatives. Occupy Oakland calls for and will participate in a new direction for the Occupy movement based on the recognition that we must not only find new ways to provide for our needs beyond thestate we must also attack the institutions that lock us into an increasingly miserable life of exploitation, debt, and deepening poverty everywhere. IF WE CAN'T LIVE, WE WON'T WORK.

May Day is an international holiday that commemorates the 1886 Haymarket Massacre, when Chicago police defending, as always, the interests of the 1% attacked and murdered workers participating in a general strike and demanding an 8-hour workday. In the 21st century, despite what politicians tell us, class war is alive and well against workers (rank-and- file and non-unionized), students, people of color, un- and underemployed, immigrants, homeless, women, queer/trans folks, prisoners. Instead of finding common ground with monsters, it's time we fight them. And it's time we make fighting back an everyday reality in the Bay Area and beyond.

On May Day 2012, Occupy Oakland will join with people from all walks of life in all parts of the world around the world in a global general strike to shut down the global circulation of capital that every day serves to enrich the ruling classes and impoverish the rest of us. There will be no victory but that which we make for ourselves, reclaiming the means of existence from which we have been and continue to be dispossessed every day.
REVOLT FOR A LIFE WORTH LIVING

STRIKE / BLOCKADE / OCCUPY

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Occupy the PGA in Benton Harbor, MI May 23-27, 2012
http://wibailoutpeople.org/2011/12/29/occupy-the-pga-in-benton-harbor-mi-may-23-27-2012/

President/NAACP/BANCO
& Stop The Take Over
Benton Harbor
Rev. Edward Pinkney
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI

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B. VIDEO, FILM, AUDIO. ART, POETRY, ETC.:
[Some of these videos are embeded on the BAUAW website:
http://bauaw.blogspot.com/ or bauaw.org ...bw]

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*
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Photo of George Zimmerman, in 2005 photo, left, and in a more recent photo.
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/04/02/us/the-events-leading-to-the-sooting-of-trayvon-martin.html?hp

SPD Security Cams.wmv
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WWDNbQUgm4&feature=player_embedded

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Kids being put on buses and transported from school to "alternate locations" in Terror Drills

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qFia_w8adWQ

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Private prisons,
a recession resistant investment opportunity
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DIGLDOxx9Vg

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Attack Dogs used on a High School Walkout in MD, Four Students Charged With
"Thought Crimes"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_wafMaML17w

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Common forms of misconduct by Law Enforcement Officials and Prosecutors
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ViSpM4K276w&feature=related

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Organizing & Instigating: OCCUPY - Ronnie Goodman
http://arthazelwood.com/instigator/occupy/occupy-birth-video.html

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Rep News 12: Yes We Kony
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68GbzIkYdc8

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

The New Black by The Mavrix - Official Music Video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4rLfja8488

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Japan One Year Later
http://www.onlineschools.org/japan-one-year-later/

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

The CIA's Heart Attack Gun
http://www.brasschecktv.com/videos/assassination-studies/the-cias-heart-attack-gun-.html

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Occupy The PGA
May 23-27 (big day: Sat. May 26) - Benton Harbor, Michigan
Demonstrate in protest of land stolen by Whirlpool Corporation
http://occupythepga.wordpress.com/

bhbanco.org
Rev. Edward Pinkney 269-925-0001

Occupy The PGA
May 23-27 (big day: Sat. May 26) - Benton Harbor, Michigan
Demonstrate in protest of land stolen by Whirlpool Corporation
http://occupythepga.wordpress.com/

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The Invisible American Workforce
http://www.democracynow.org/2011/8/5/new_expos_tracks_alec_private_prison

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Labor Beat: NATO vs The 1st Amendment
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbQxnb4so3U

For more detailed information, send us a request at mail@laborbeat.org.

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Anti-War Demonstrators Storm Pentagon 1967/10/24
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDiFkckszCw

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Liberal Hypocrisy on Obama Vs Bush - Poll
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pl_HGEXq_aM&feature=player_embedded

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Greek trade unionists and black bloc October 2011
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHMLD_Vql0o&feature=player_embedded#!

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The Battle of Oakland
by brandon jourdan plus
http://vimeo.com/36256273

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Officers Pulled Off Street After Tape of Beating Surfaces
By ANDY NEWMAN
February 1, 2012, 10:56 am
http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/01/officers-pulled-off-street-after-tape-of-beating-surfaces/?ref=nyregion

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Defending The People's Mic
by Pham Binh of Occupy Wall Street
The North Star
January 20, 2012
http://www.thenorthstar.info/?p=53
Grand Central Terminal Arrests - MIRROR
Two protesters mic check about the loss of freedom brought about by the passage of the NDAA and both are promptly arrested and whisked out of public sight.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7Tj7tEVx8A&feature=player_embedded

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This is excellent! Michelle Alexander pulls no punches!
Michelle Alexander, Author of The New Jim Crow, speaks about the political strategy
behind the War on Drugs and its connection to the mass incarceration of Black and Brown people in the United States.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P75cbEdNo2U&feature=player_embedded

If you think Bill Clinton was "the first black President" you need to watch this video and see how much damage his administration caused for the black community as a result of his get tough attitude on crime that appealed to white swing voters.

This speech took place at Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem on January 12, 2012.

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NATO, G8 In Chicago: More Details Released, City Grants First Protest Permit
By CARLA K. JOHNSON
January 12, 2012
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/12/nato-g8-in-chicago-more-d_n_1203429.html

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Release Bradley Manning
Almost Gone (The Ballad Of Bradley Manning)
Written by Graham Nash and James Raymond (son of David Crosby)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dAYG7yJpBbQ&feature=player_embedded

Locked up in a white room, underneath a glaring light
Every 5 minutes, they're asking me if I'm alright
Locked up in a white room naked as the day I was born
24 bright light, 24 all alone

What I did was show some truth to the working man
What I did was blow the whistle and the games began

Tell the truth and it will set you free
That's what they taught me as a child
But I can't be silent after all I've seen and done
24 bright light I'm almost gone, almost gone

Locked up in a white room, dying to communicate
Trying to hang in there underneath a crushing wait
Locked up in a white room I'm always facing time
24 bright light, 24 down the line

What I did was show some truth to the working man
What I did was blow the whistle and the games began

But I did my duty to my country first
That's what they taught me as a man
But I can't be silent after all I've seen and done
24 bright light I'm almost gone, almost gone
(Treat me like a human, Treat me like a man )

Read more on Nash's blog - grahamnash.com

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FREEDOM ROAD - A Tribute to Mumia sung by Renn Lee
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qC27vzqxSCA&feature=youtu.be

FREEDOM ROAD

(written by Samuel Lagitimus- adapted in English, sung and arranged by Paris-Sydney)

They've taken all you had away
And what's left, still they can't bend
To find you guilty was their way
Yet here I am and you're my friend.

Your writing's proof enough for me, Mumia,
You place honor and law
Above all, till the end.

Thirty years gone by
On death row, we never knew
Anything of the weight
You had to carry while you grew.

But they won't get you, no, Mumia, no
We won't let them ever win
Won't let you bear such a heavy load
While walking down the Freedom Road.

(Instrumental)

Like Jimmy (1) and Bob (2) you've lived to see the light:
Believing that all men
Can stand up for their rights.

Accusing you of crime
From behind their scales they hide
It makes them scared deep down inside
To know that truth is on your side.

But they won't get you, no, Mumia, no,
We won't let them ever win
Won't let you bear such a heavy load
While walking down the Freedom Road.

(Instumental)

Those thirty years gone by
On death row, we never knew
Anything of the weight
You had to carry while you grew.

We've named a street for you, Mumia
A lovely rue in Saint-Denis
By joining hands we're showing you
Proof of our strength and peace.

But they won't get you, no, Mumia, no,
We won't let them ever win
Won't let you bear such a heavy load
While walking down the Freedom Road.X2

But they won't get you, no, Mumia, no
We won't let them ever win
Won't let them block you from getting in,
Into your home on Freedom Road.

But they won't get you no Mumia,
We will win, we'll never bend
For thirty years you've shown us all
Just how to fight until the end.

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School police increasingly arresting American students?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zl-efNBvjUU&feature=player_embedded

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FYI:
Nuclear Detonation Timeline "1945-1998"

The 2053 nuclear tests and explosions that took place between 1945 and 1998 are plotted visually and audibly on a world map.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9lquok4Pdk&feature=share&mid=5408

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We Are the 99 Percent

We are the 99 percent. We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay and no rights, if we're working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.

Brought to you by the people who occupy wall street. Why will YOU occupy?

OccupyWallSt.org
Occupytogether.org
wearethe99percentuk.tumblr.com
http://wearethe99percent.tumblr.com/

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Drop All Charges on the 'Occupy Wall Street' Arrestees!
Stop Police Attacks & Arrests! Support 'Occupy Wall Street'!

SIGN THE ONLINE PETITION AT:
http://bailoutpeople.org/dropchargesonoccupywallstarrestees.shtml
DROP ALL CHARGES ON THE OCCUPY WALL STREET ARRESTEES!

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We Are The People Who Will Save Our Schools

YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFAOJsBxAxY

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In honor of the 75th Anniversary of the 44-Day Flint Michigan sit-down strike at GM that began December 30, 1936:

According to Michael Moore, (Although he has done some good things, this clip isn't one of them) in this clip from his film, "Capitalism a Love Story," it was Roosevelt who saved the day!):

"After a bloody battle one evening, the Governor of Michigan, with the support of the President of the United States, Franklin Roosevelt, sent in the National Guard. But the guns and the soldiers weren't used on the workers; they were pointed at the police and the hired goons warning them to leave these workers alone. For Mr. Roosevelt believed that the men inside had a right to a redress of their grievances." -Michael Moore's 'Capitalism: A Love Story'
- Flint Sit-Down Strike http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8x1_q9wg58

But those cannons were not aimed at the goons and cops! They were aimed straight at the factory filled with strikers! Watch what REALLY happened and how the strike was really won!

'With babies & banners' -- 75 years since the 44-day Flint sit-down strike
http://links.org.au/node/2681
--Inspiring

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HALLELUJAH CORPORATIONS (revised edition).mov
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ws0WSNRpy3g

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

ONE OF THE GREATEST POSTS ON YOUTUBE SO FAR!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8C-qIgbP9o&feature=share&mid=552

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ILWU Local 10 Longshore Workers Speak-Out At Oakland Port Shutdown
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JUpBpZYwms

Uploaded by laborvideo on Dec 13, 2011

ILWU Local 10 longshore workers speak out during a blockade of the Port of Oakland called for by Occupy Oakland. Anthony Levieges and Clarence Thomas rank and file members of the union. The action took place on December 12, 2011 and the interview took place at Pier 30 on the Oakland docks.

For more information on the ILWU Local 21 Longview EGT struggle go to
http://www.facebook.com/groups/256313837734192/
For further info on the action and the press conferernce go to:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jz3fE-Vhrw8&feature=youtu.be
Production of Labor Video Project www.laborvideo.org

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UC Davis Police Violence Adds Fuel to Fire
By Scott Galindez, Reader Supported News
19 November 11
http://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/275-42/8485-uc-davis-police-violence-adds-fuel-to-fire

UC Davis Protestors Pepper Sprayed
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AdDLhPwpp4&feature=player_embedded

Police PEPPER SPRAY UC Davis STUDENT PROTESTERS!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuWEx6Cfn-I&feature=player_embedded

Police pepper spraying and arresting students at UC Davis
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmJmmnMkuEM&feature=player_embedded

*---------*

UC Davis Chancellor Katehi walks to her car
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=CZ0t9ez_EGI#!

Occupy Seattle - 84 Year Old Woman Dorli Rainey Pepper Sprayed
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTIyE_JlJzw&feature=related

*---------*

THE BEST VIDEO ON "OCCUPY THE WORLD"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S880UldxB1o

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Shot by police with rubber bullet at Occupy Oakland
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0pX9LeE-g8&feature=player_embedded

*---------*

Copwatch@Occupy Oakland: Beware of Police Infiltrators and Provocateurs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VrvMzqopHH0

*---------*

Occupy Oakland 11-2 Strike: Police Tear Gas, Black Bloc, War in the Streets
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Tu_D8SFYck&feature=player_embedded

*----*

Quebec police admitted that, in 2007, thugs carrying rocks to a peaceful protest were actually undercover Quebec police officers:

POLICE STATE Criminal Cops EXPOSED As Agent Provocateurs @ SPP Protest
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoiisMMCFT0&feature=player_embedded


*----*

Quebec police admit going undercover at montebello protests
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gAfzUOx53Rg&feature=player_embedded

G20: Epic Undercover Police Fail
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrJ7aU-n1L8&feature=player_embedded

*----*

WHAT HAPPENED IN OAKLAND TUESDAY NIGHT, OCTOBER 25:

Occupy Oakland Protest
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlPs-REyl-0&feature=player_embedded

Cops make mass arrests at occupy Oakland
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R27kD2_7PwU&feature=player_embedded

Raw Video: Protesters Clash With Oakland Police
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpO-lJr2BQY&feature=player_embedded

Occupy Oakland - Flashbangs USED on protesters OPD LIES
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqNOPZLw03Q&feature=player_embedded

KTVU TV Video of Police violence
http://www.ktvu.com/video/29587714/index.html

Marine Vet wounded, tear gas & flash-bang grenades thrown in downtown Oakland
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMUgPTCgwcQ&feature=player_embedded

Tear Gas billowing through 14th & Broadway in Downtown Oakland
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OU4Y0pwJtWE&feature=player_embedded

Arrests at Occupy Atlanta -- This is what a police state looks like
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YStWz6jbeZA&feature=player_embedded

*---------*

Labor Beat: Hey You Billionaire, Pay Your Fair Share
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PY8isD33f-I

*---------*

Voices of Occupy Boston 2011 - Kwame Somburu (Paul Boutelle) Part I
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DA48gmfGB6U&feature=youtu.be

Voices of Occupy Boston 2011 - Kwame Somburu (Paul Boutelle) Part II
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjKZpOk7TyM&feature=related

*---------*

#Occupy Wall Street In Washington Square: Mohammed Ezzeldin, former occupier of Egypt's Tahrir Square Speaks at Washington Square!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ziodsFWEb5Y&feature=player_embedded

*---------*

#OccupyTheHood, Occupy Wall Street
By adele pham
http://vimeo.com/30146870

*---------*

Live arrest at brooklyn bridge #occupywallstreet by We are Change
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yULSI-31Pto&feature=player_embedded

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FREE THE CUBAN FIVE!
http://www.thecuban5.org/wordpress/index.php

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmS4kHC_OlY&feature=player_embedded

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

One World One Revolution -- MUST SEE VIDEO -- Powerful and beautiful...bw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aE3R1BQrYCw&feature=player_embedded

"When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty." Thomas Jefferson

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Japan: angry Fukushima citizens confront government (video)
Posted by Xeni Jardin on Monday, Jul 25th at 11:36am
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVuGwc9dlhQ&feature=player_embedded

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FREE BRADLEY MANNING
http://www.bradleymanning.org/news/national-call-in-for-bradley

I received the following reply from the White House November 18, 2011 regarding the Bradley Manning petition I signed:

"Why We Can't Comment on Bradley Manning

"Thank you for signing the petition 'Free PFC Bradley Manning, the accused WikiLeaks whistleblower.' We appreciate your participation in the We the People platform on WhiteHouse.gov.

The We the People Terms of Participation explain that 'the White House may decline to address certain procurement, law enforcement, adjudicatory, or similar matters properly within the jurisdiction of federal departments or agencies, federal courts, or state and local government.' The military justice system is charged with enforcing the Uniform Code of
Military Justice. Accordingly, the White House declines to comment on the specific case raised in this petition...

That's funny! I guess Obama didn't get this memo. Here's what Obama said about Bradley:

BRADLEY MANNING "BROKE THE LAW" SAYS OBAMA!

"He broke the law!" says Obama about Bradley Manning who has yet to even be charged, let alone, gone to trial and found guilty. How horrendous is it for the President to declare someone guilty before going to trial or being charged with a crime! Justice in the U.S.A.!

Obama on FREE BRADLEY MANNING protest... San Francisco, CA. April 21, 2011- Presidential remarks on interrupt/interaction/performance art happening at fundraiser. Logan Price queries Barack after org. FRESH JUICE PARTY political action:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IfmtUpd4id0&feature=youtu.be



*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Labor Beat: Labor Stands with Subpoenaed Activists Against FBI Raids and Grand Jury Investigation of antiwar and social justice activists.
"If trouble is not at your door. It's on it's way, or it just left."
"Investigate the Billionaires...Full investigation into Wall Street..." Jesse Sharkey, Vice
President, Chicago Teachers Union
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSNUSIGZCMQ

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Julian Assange: Why the world needs WikiLeaks
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVGqE726OAo&feature=player_embedded

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Coal Ash: One Valley's Tale
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6E7h-DNvwx4&feature=player_embedded

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*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

C. SPECIAL APPEALS AND ONGOING CAMPAIGNS

*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*
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Antiwar/Social Justice Activist Arrested
Support Joe Callahan
On July 31, 2011, after two Salvadoran immigrants went to Canada to apply for asylum, long-time Twin Cities activist Joe Callahan was arrested by Canadian police at the Pigeon River border station. At the time Joe was alone in his car. The Canadian police used a backpack, maps and other items found in Joe's car as the grounds for his arrest.

Joe was charged with "aiding and abetting an immigration without a visa," and "providing false and misleading information." As a result of these charges, Joe was locked up in the Thunder Bay District Jail in cramped, crowded conditions where inmates are frequently forced to sleep on the floor, as Joe did for the first several days he was there. While Joe was in custody, the authorities added the charge of "smuggling" or "human trafficking." This charge is much more serious and carries a maximum sentence of ten years.

After one month Joe was released on bail and was allowed to return to the Minneapolis area, pending trial. He is restricted to the Twin Cities area as a condition of his release. Meanwhile, the prosecuting attorney, or "Crown Attorney," as they are called in Canada, informed Joe's defense attorneys that he is seeking a sentence of three or four years. The trial will be held in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The date has not yet been set. Joe is being represented by Mary Bird and Francis Thatcher, a prominent attorney in the Aboriginal rights struggle.

Over the last thirty years Joe has been active in solidarity work for Central America and Cuba. He has been an active defender of immigration rights. He was also active against an attempt to reinstate the death penalty in Minnesota. His record in the fight for justice goes back to his youth. As a student he was active in the anti-Vietnam war movement.

For four and a half years Joe worked for the Metro Transit System as a bus driver, and was a member of the Amalgamated Transit Union. He has spent his working life in blue collar, unionized jobs. Now, because of his legal difficulties, he has been forced to take a lower-paying position as a driver for a small bus company.

Joe Callahan is NOT a human trafficker! Joe is NOT a smuggler! These charges against him are unfounded and they should be dropped. Joe is a political activist concerned about the rights of immigrants. He needs the help of all supporters of democratic rights.

You can aid in Joe's defense:

--Send donations to: Joe Callahan Support Committee, 2919 Polk St. NE, Minneapolis, Mn 55418

--Circulate this letter and urge others to sign. New signers can sign via email to: joecallahansupport@hotmail.com

--Attend Joe's trial in Thunder Bay, Ontario. For more information contact: supportjoe.wordpress.com or joecallahansupport@hotmail.com

In solidarity,

Michael Rattner, President, Center for Constitutional Rights; Michael Steven Smith, Esq. Co-host, Law and Disorder; Jeff Mackler, Dir., Mobilization to Free Mumia Abu Jamal; Roger Sheppard, Member, Local 105 IBEW (retired); Barbara Mutnick, activist, Queens, New York; Cliff Conner, author, "A People's History of Science"; Marv Gandall, activist, Ottawa Canada; Walker Jones, activist, Ottawa Canada; Bruce Scheff, Chicago, IL; -Continued on page 2-; Support Joe Callahan, page 2; Dianne Feeley, Editor, Against the Current; Alan Wald, Editor, Against the Current; Malik Miah, Editor, Against the Current; John Riddell, Toronto; Suzanne Weiss, Toronto; Art Young, Greater Toronto Workers' Assembly; Linda Meissenheimer, Toronto; Brad Sigal, Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Coalition; Marie Braun, Twin Cities Peace Campaign; Dave Bicking, Green Party; Alan Dale, Minnesota Peace Action Coalition; Tracy Molm, Students for a Democratic Society; Eric Angell, co-producer, "Our World in "Depth"; Colleen McGilp, AFSCME (retired); Jess Sundin, Anti-War Committee; Bruce Nestor, Past President, National Lawyers Guild; Linden Gawboy, Committee to Stop FBI Repression; Tim O'Brien, Hands Off Honduras; Anh Pham, Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Coalition; Timothy Jordan, architect, Minneapolis; Kay Pitney, activist, Minneapolis; Jennie Eisert, Anti-War Committee; Beth Shapiro, Women Against Military Madness; Joel Greenberg, Chicago, Il.; Mark Satinoff, shop steward, IAM Local Lodge 1894, Queens, NY; Carol Hayse, LCSW Note: Organizations for Identification Purposes Only

This letter has been approved by the Joe Callahan Support Committee. Please circulate this letter as widely as possible to potential supporters.

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LATEST ON LYNNE STEWART:

Free-Speech Argument in Appeal of Disbarred Lawyer's Sentence
By COLIN MOYNIHAN
February 29, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/01/nyregion/free-speech-is-cited-in-appeal-of-lynne-stewarts-10-year-sentence.html?ref=nyregion

Write to Lynne Stewart Defense Committee at:
Lynne Stewart Defense Committee
1070 Dean Street
Brooklyn, New York 11216
For further information: 718-789-0558 or 917-853-9759

DEFEND LYNNE STEWART!
http://lynnestewart.org/

Write to Lynne Stewart at:

Lynne Stewart #53504 - 054
Unit 2N
Federal Medical Center, Carswell
P.O. Box 27137
Fort Worth, TEXAS 76127

Visiting Lynne:

Visiting is very liberal but first she has to get people on her visiting list; wait til she or the
lawyers let you know. The visits are FRI, SAT, SUN AND MON for 4 hours and on weekends 8
to 3. Bring clear plastic change purse with lots of change to buy from the machines. Brief Kiss
upon arrival and departure, no touching or holding during visit (!!) On visiting forms it may
be required that you knew me before I came to prison. Not a problem for most of you.

Commissary Money:

Commissary Money is always welcome It is how Lynne pay for the phone and for email.
Also for a lot that prison doesn't supply in terms of food and "sundries" (pens!) (A very big
list that includes Raisins, Salad Dressing, ankle sox, mozzarella (definitely not from Antonys--
more like a white cheddar, Sanitas Corn Chips but no Salsa, etc. To add money, you do this by
using Western Union and a credit card by phone or you can send a USPO money order or
Business or Govt Check. The negotiable instruments (PAPER!) need to be sent to Federal
Bureau of Prisons, 53504-054, Lynne Stewart, PO Box 474701, Des Moines Iowa 50947-001
(Payable to Lynne Stewart, 53504-054) They hold the mo or checks for 15 days. Western
Union costs $10 but is within 2 hours. If you mail, your return address must be on the
envelope. Unnecessarily complicated? Of course, it's the BOP !)

The address of her Defense Committee is:

Lynne Stewart Defense Committee
1070 Dean Street
Brooklyn, New York 11216
For further information:
718-789-0558 or 917-853-9759

Please make a generous contribution to her defense.

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*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Free Mumia NOW!
Prisonradio.org
Write to Mumia

Mumia Abu-Jamal AM 8335
SCI Mahanoy
301 Morea Road
Frackville, PA 17932

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*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*---------*

Urgent Appeal to Occupy and All Social Justice Movements: Mobilize to Defend the
Egyptian Revolution
Endorse the statement here:
http://www.defendegyptianrevolution.org/2011/12/19/defend-the-egyptian-revolution/

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Tarek Mehanna - another victim of the U.S. War to Terrorize Everyone. He was targeted because he would not spy on his Muslim community for the FBI. Under the new NDAA indefinite military detention provision, Tarek is someone who likely would never come to a trial, although an American citizen. His sentencing is on April 12. There will be an appeal.
Another right we may kiss goodbye. We should not accept the verdict and continue to fight for his release, just as we do for hero Bradley Manning, and all the many others unjustly persecuted by our government until it is the war criminals on trial, prosecuted by the people, and not the other way around.

Marilyn Levin

Official defense website: http://freetarek.com/

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HANDS OFF IRAN PETITION
http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/hands-off-iran/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=system&utm_campaign=Send%2Bto%2BFriend

(For a complete analysis of the prospects of war, click here)
http://nepajac.org/unaciran.htm

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"A Child's View from Gaza: Palestinian Children's Art and the Fight Against Censorship" book
https://www.mecaforpeace.org/civicrm/contribute/transact?reset=1&id=25

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Say No to Police Repression of NATO Protests
http://www.stopfbi.net/get-involved/nato-g8-police-repression

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Justice for Albert Woodfox and Herman Wallace: Decades of isolation in Louisiana state prisons must end
Take Action -- Sign Petition Here:
http://www.amnesty.org/en/appeals-for-action/justice-for-albert-woodfox-and-herman-wallace

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WITNESS GAZA
http://www.witnessgaza.com/

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Write to Bradley
http://bradleymanning.org/donate

View the new 90 second "I am Bradley Manning" video:
I am Bradley Manning
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-P3OXML00s

Courage to Resist
484 Lake Park Ave. #41
Oakland, CA 94610
510-488-3559
couragetoresist.org

"A Fort Leavenworth mailing address has been released for Bradley Manning:

Bradley Manning 89289
830 Sabalu Road
Fort Leavenworth, KS 66027

The receptionist at the military barracks confirmed that if someone sends Bradley Manning a letter to that address, it will be delivered to him."

http://www.bradleymanning.org/news/update-42811

This is also a Facebook event

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=207100509321891#!/event.php?eid=207100509321891

Courage to Resist needs your support
Please donate today:
https://co.clickandpledge.com/sp/d1/default.aspx?wid=38590

"Soldiers sworn oath is to defend and support the Constitution. Bradley Manning has been defending and supporting our Constitution." --Dan Ellsberg, Pentagon Papers whistle-blower

Jeff Paterson
Project Director, Courage to Resist
First US military service member to refuse to ï¬ght in Iraq
Please donate today.

https://co.clickandpledge.com/sp/d1/default.aspx?wid=38590

P.S. I'm asking that you consider a contribution of $50 or more, or possibly becoming a sustainer at $15 a month. Of course, now is also a perfect time to make a end of year tax-deductible donation. Thanks again for your support!

Please click here to forward this to a friend who might also be interested in supporting GI resisters.
http://ymlp.com/forward.php?id=lS3tR&e=bonnieweinstein@yahoo.com

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Drop the Charges Against Carlos Montes, Stop the FBI Attack on the Chicano and Immigrant Rights Movement, and Stop FBI Repression of Anti-War Activists NOW! Call Off the Expanding Grand Jury Witchhunt and FBI Repression of Anti-War Activists NOW!

Cancel the Subpoenas! Cancel the Grand Juries! Condemn the FBI Raids and Harassment of Chicano, Immigrant Rights, Anti-War and International Solidarity Activists!

STOP THE FBI CAMPAIGN OF REPRESSION AGAINST CHICANO, IMMIGRANT RIGHTS, ANTI-WAR AND INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY ACTIVISTS NOW!
Initiated by the Committee to Stop FBI Repression stopfbi.net
stopfbi@gmail.com
Contact the Committee to Stop FBI Repression
at stopfbi.net
stopfbi@gmail.com

Committee to Stop FBI Repression
NATIONAL CALL-IN DAY -- ANY DAY
to Fitzgerald, Holder and Obama

The Grand Jury is still on its witch hunt and the FBI is still harassing activists. This must stop.
Please make these calls:
1. Call U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald at 312-353-5300 . Then dial 0(zero) for operator and ask to leave a message with the Duty Clerk.
2. Call U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder 202-353-1555
3. Call President Obama at 202-456-1111

FFI: Visit www.StopFBI.net or email info@StopFBI.net or call
612-379-3585 .

Our mailing address is:
Committee to Stop FBI Repression
PO Box 14183
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Committee to Stop FBI Repression
P.O. Box 14183
Minneapolis, MN 55414

Please make a donation today at stopfbi.net (PayPal) on the right side of your screen. Also you can write to:
Committee to Stop FBI Repression
P.O. Box 14183
Minneapolis, MN 55414

This is a critical time for us to stand together, defend free speech, and defend those who help to organize for peace and justice, both at home and abroad!

Thank you for your generosity! Tom Burke

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The Battle Is Still On To
FREE MUMIA ABU-JAMAL!
The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
PO Box 16222 • Oakland CA 94610
www.laboractionmumia.org

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Call for EMERGENCY RESPONSE Action if Assange Indicted,

Dear Friends:

We write in haste, trying to reach as many of you as possible although the holiday break has begun.......This plan for an urgent "The Day After" demonstration is one we hope you and many, many more organizations will take up as your own, and mobilize for. World Can't Wait asks you to do all you can to spread it through list serves, Facebook, twitter, holiday gatherings.

Our proposal is very very simple, and you can use the following announcement to mobilize - or write your own....

ANY DAY NOW . . . IN THE EVENT THAT THE U.S. INDICTS JULIAN ASSANGE HANDS OFF WIKILEAKS! FREE JULIAN ASSANGE! FREE BRADLEY MANNING!

Join the HUMAN CHAIN AROUND THE FEDERAL BUILDING!
New Federal Building, 7th and Mission, San Francisco (nearest BART: Civic Center)
4:00-6:00 PM on The Day FOLLOWING U.S. indictment of Assange

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/12/mannings-message-christmas-eve-i-gr/

Demonstrations defending Wikileaks and Assange, and Brad Manning, have already been flowering around the world. Make it happen here too. Especially here . . .

To join into this action plan, or with questions, contact World Can't Wait or whichever organization or listserve you received this message from.

World Can't Wait, SF Bay
415-864-5153
sf@worldcantwait.org

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KEVIN COOPER IS INNOCENT! FREE KEVIN COOPER!

Reasonable doubts about executing Kevin Cooper
Chronicle Editorial
Monday, December 13, 2010
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/12/13/EDG81GP0I7.DTL

Death penalty -- Kevin Cooper is Innocent! Help save his life from San Quentin's death row!

http://www.savekevincooper.org/
http://www.savekevincooper.org/pages/essays_content.html?ID=255

URGENT ACTION APPEAL
- From Amnesty International USA
17 December 2010
Click here to take action online:
http://takeaction.amnestyusa.org/siteapps/advocacy/index.aspx?c=jhKPIXPCIoE&b=2590179&template=x.ascx&action=15084

To learn about recent Urgent Action successes and updates, go to
http://www.amnestyusa.org/iar/success

For a print-friendly version of this Urgent Action (PDF):
http://www.amnestyusa.org/actioncenter/actions/uaa25910.pdf

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Short Video About Al-Awda's Work
The following link is to a short video which provides an overview of Al-Awda's work since the founding of our organization in 2000. This video was first shown on Saturday May 23, 2009 at the fundraising banquet of the 7th Annual Int'l Al-Awda Convention in Anaheim California. It was produced from footage collected over the past nine years.
Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTiAkbB5uC0&eurl
Support Al-Awda, a Great Organization and Cause!

Al-Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition, depends on your financial support to carry out its work.

To submit your tax-deductible donation to support our work, go to
http://www.al-awda.org/donate.html
and follow the simple instructions.

Thank you for your generosity!

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D. ARTICLES IN FULL (Unless otherwise noted)

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1) Leah Bolger is a member of the UNAC CC and the president of Veterans for Peace. Several months ago she calmly interrupted a hearing of the Supper Committee to speak up for the 99% and now may face 6 months in jail.
Joe Callahan is a long time antiwar and union activist who helped bring 2 Salvadoran immigrants into Canada where they were seeking asylum. Joe now faces several serious charges.
United National Antiwar Coalition
UNACpeace@gmail.com
UNAC
P.O. Box 123
Delmar, NY 12054
518-227-6947
www.unacpeace.org

2) Feminists hail explosion in new grassroots groups
Dozens of new organisations are springing up around the UK, campaigning on issues from lads' mags to benefit cuts
Alexandra Topping
guardian.co.uk
Monday 9 April 2012 12.36 EDT
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/apr/09/feminists-hail-explosion-grassroots-groups?CMP=twt_gu

3) Prosecutor in Martin Case Will Alone Determine Its Merits
By LIZETTE ALVAREZ and JOHN SCHWARTZ
April 9, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/10/us/grand-jury-review-skipped-in-trayvon-martin-case.html?hp

4) Food Stamps Helped Reduce Poverty Rate, Study Finds
By SABRINA TAVERNISE
April 9, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/10/us/food-stamp-program-helping-reduce-poverty.html?ref=us

5) Chicago: Former Mayor Will Testify on Accusations of Police Torture
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
April 10, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/11/us/chicago-former-mayor-will-testify-on-accusations-of-police-torture.html?ref=us

6) Defend Joe Callahan
Send contributions to:
Joe Callahan Support Committee; 2919 Polk St.NE; Minneapolis, Mn. 55418
For More information about Joe’s case: joecallahansupport@hotmail.com
For more information on the April 14 gathering: defendjoe@gmail.com
Joe Callahan Support Committee

7) Vaccinations Begin in a Cholera-Ravaged Haiti
By DEBORAH SONTAG
April 12, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/13/world/americas/vaccinations-begin-in-a-cholera-ravaged-haiti.html?ref=world

8) Inflation Is Outrunning The Earnings of Workers
By REUTERS
April 13, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/14/business/economy/consumer-inflation-up-modestly.html?ref=business

9) Death Row Inmate’s Best Lawyer Was Himself
By ADAM LIPTAK
April 16, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/us/inmates-ordeal-shows-vagaries-of-capital-cases.html?hp

10) Europe’s Economic Suicide
By PAUL KRUGMAN
April 15, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/16/opinion/krugman-europes-economic-suicide.html?hp

11) From the Birthplace of Big Brother
New York Times Editorial
April 15, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/16/opinion/from-the-birthplace-of-big-brother.html?hp

12) Media Firms Sue to Force Opening of Zimmerman File
By JENNIFER PRESTON
April 16, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/us/media-firms-sue-to-force-opening-of-zimmerman-file.html?ref=us

13) Brazil: Inmates Hold Hostages
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
April 16, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/world/americas/brazil-inmates-hold-hostages.html?ref=world

14) New York’s Poverty Rate Rises, Study Finds
By SAM ROBERTS
April 17, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/nyregion/new-york-citys-poverty-rate-reaches-highest-level-since-2005.html?ref=nyregion

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1) Leah Bolger is a member of the UNAC CC and the president of Veterans for Peace. Several months ago she calmly interrupted a hearing of the Supper Committee to speak up for the 99% and now may face 6 months in jail.
Joe Callahan is a long time antiwar and union activist who helped bring 2 Salvadoran immigrants into Canada where they were seeking asylum. Joe now faces several serious charges.
United National Antiwar Coalition
UNACpeace@gmail.com
UNAC
P.O. Box 123
Delmar, NY 12054
518-227-6947
www.unacpeace.org

(please forward widely)

As you know, civil liberties in this country are under attack. Below is information on two important defense cases that need your support.

Leah Bolger is a member of the UNAC CC and the president of Veterans for Peace. Several months ago she calmly interrupted a hearing of the Supper Committee to speak up for the 99% and now may face 6 months in jail.

Joe Callahan is a long time antiwar and union activist who helped bring 2 Salvadoran immigrants into Canada where they were seeking asylum. Joe now faces several serious charges.

Please see the information below and do what you can to help.

Peace,
Joe Lombardo
UNAC co-coordinator

20-Year Veteran to Face Jail Time for Act of Civil Disobedience

Disruption of Congressional “Super Committee” could result in 6-month sentence

Retired Naval Commander Leah Bolger will appear in court Thursday, April 12th 2012 on charges stemming from her arrest on October 26th, 2011. Bolger, who is a peace activist and the President of Veterans For Peace, interrupted a public hearing of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, commonly known as the Super Committee.

In a calm, articulate manner Bolger spoke for nearly a minute in the well of the Senate hearing room before Capitol Hill police escorted her out and placed her under arrest. Prominent social activist Ben Cohen praised Bolger for her courageous stand in this video which includes footage of her action: http://youtu.be/aZVtPhVBM5Q Bolger accused the sole witness, Chief Budget Officer Douglas Elmendorf, of obfuscating the true costs of military spending, and implored the Committee to enact the people’s plan for reducing the deficit—end the wars and tax the rich.

Ralph Nader, a member of Veterans For Peace, applauded retired Naval Commander, Bolger's effort to challenge the Super Committee for a minute of an un-scheduled reminder that cutting much needed social programs that saves lives rather than cutting the bloated military budget and taxing the 1% is Congressional insanity. "The government is dysfunctional, working for corporate interests rather than providing for the peoples necessities. Bolger showed what active citizens should be doing peacefully-- confronting the corruption head on and making sure the public knows what is really going on. She should be honored for her actions."

Bolger was a member of the Occupation of Washington, DC at Freedom Plaza. The occupation protested the Super Committee by holding an Occupied Super Committee hearing which was aired on C-SPAN, see CSPAN Coverage of Occupied Super Committee Hearings, and produced its own report. By cutting military spending and taxing the wealthy, the Occupied Super Committee reached the ten year deficit targets set by President Obama and Congress in two years, and was able to fund a jobs program, forgive student debt and secure social programs. See The 99%’s Deficit Proposal: How to create jobs, reduce the wealth divide and control spending. As a result of the actions of Bolger, the Occupy movement and other activists, the Super Committee, which had been on course to cut Social Security and Medicare, decided not to issue a report.

A press conference will be held at 8:30 am, Thursday April 12th in front of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, 500 Indiana Ave NW, Washington DC. Those scheduled to speak and/or answer questions include:

Leah Bolger, defendant, President of Veterans For Peace (VFP)

Mark Goldstone, attorney for the defendant

Art Brennan, NH Retired Superior Court Associate Justice, member of VFP

Kevin Zeese, Co-director, Its Our Economy, organizer of Occupy Washington, DC

David Swanson, author, activist, radio host, member of VFP

Support Joe Callahan

On July 31, 2011, after two Salvadoran immigrants went to Canada to apply for asylum, long-time Twin Cities activist Joe Callahan was arrested by Canadian police at the Pigeon River border station. At the time Joe was alone in his car. The Canadian police used a backpack, maps and other items found in Joe s car as the grounds for his arrest.

Joe was charged with aiding and abetting an immigration without a visa, and providing false and misleading information. As a result of these charges, Joe was locked up in the Thunder Bay District Jail in cramped, crowded conditions where inmates are frequently forced to sleep on the floor, as Joe did for the first several days he was there. While Joe was in custody, the authorities added the charge of smuggling or human trafficking. This charge is much more serious and carries a maximum sentence of ten years.

After one month Joe was released on bail and was allowed to return to the Minneapolis area, pending trial. He is restricted to the Twin Cities area as a condition of his release. Meanwhile, the prosecuting attorney, or Crown Attorney, as they are called in Canada, informed Joe s defense attorneys that he is seeking a sentence of three or four years. The trial will be held in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The date has not yet been set. Joe is being represented by Mary Bird and Francis Thatcher, a prominent attorney in the Aboriginal rights struggle.

Over the last thirty years Joe has been active in solidarity work for Central America and Cuba. He has been an active defender of immigration rights. He was also active against an attempt to reinstate the death penalty in Minnesota. His record in the fight for justice goes back to his youth. As a student he was active in the anti-Vietnam war movement.

For four and a half years Joe worked for the Metro Transit System as a bus driver, and was a member of the Amalgamated Transit Union. He has spent his working life in blue collar, unionized jobs. Now, because of his legal difficulties, he has been forced to take a lower-paying position as a driver for a small bus company.

Joe Callahan is NOT a human trafficker! Joe is NOT a smuggler! These charges against him are unfounded and they should be dropped. Joe is a political activist concerned about the rights of immigrants. He needs the help of all supporters of democratic rights.

You can aid in Joe s defense:

§ Send donations to: Joe Callahan Support Committee, 2919 Polk St. NE, Minneapolis, Mn 55418

§ Circulate this letter and urge others to sign. New signers can sign via email to:

joecallahansupport@hotmail.com

§ Attend Joe s trial in Thunder Bay, Ontario. For more information contact:

supportjoe.wordpress.com or joecallahansupport@hotmail.com

In solidarity,

Michael Rattner, President, Center for Constitutional Rights; Michael Steven Smith, Esq. Co-host, Law and Disorder; Jeff Mackler, Dir., Mobilization to Free Mumia Abu Jamal; Roger Sheppard, Member, Local 105 IBEW (retired)

Barbara Mutnick, activist, Queens, New York; Cliff Conner, author, A People s History of Science ; Marv Gandall, activist, Ottawa Canada

Walker Jones, activist, Ottawa Canada; Bruce Scheff, Chicago, IL

Dianne Feeley, Editor, Against the Current; Alan Wald, Editor, Against the Current; Malik Miah, Editor, Against the Current; John Riddell, Toronto

Suzanne Weiss, Toronto; Art Young, Greater Toronto Workers Assembly

Linda Meissenheimer, Toronto; Brad Sigal, Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Coalition; Marie Braun, Twin Cities Peace Campaign; Dave Bicking, Green Party; Alan Dale, Minnesota Peace Action Coalition; Tracy Molm, Students for a Democratic Society; Eric Angell, co-producer, Our World in Depth

Colleen McGilp, AFSCME (retired); Jess Sundin, Anti-War Committee; Bruce Nestor, Past President, National Lawyers Guild; Linden Gawboy, Committee to Stop FBI Repression; Tim O Brien, Hands Off Honduras; Anh Pham, Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Coalition; Timothy Jordan, architect, Minneapolis; Kay Pitney, activist, Minneapolis; Jennie Eisert, Anti-War Committee; Beth Shapiro, Women Against Military Madness; Joel Greenberg, Chicago, Il.; Mark Satinoff, shop steward, IAM Local Lodge 1894, Queens, NY; Carol Hayse, LCSW; Steve Echardt, Chicago Cuba Committee; Chicago Committee Against Political Repression; Norine Gutekanst, Organizing Coordinator, Chicago Teachers Union

Carl Finamore, former President (ret), Air Transport Employees, Local Lodge 1781, IAMAW, and current delegate, San Francisco Labor Council, AFL-CIO, Joe Lombardo, United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) Co-coordinator.

Note: Organizations for Identification Purposes Only

This letter has been approved by the Joe Callahan Support Committee.

Please circulate this letter as widely as possible to potential supporters.

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2) Feminists hail explosion in new grassroots groups
Dozens of new organisations are springing up around the UK, campaigning on issues from lads' mags to benefit cuts
Alexandra Topping
guardian.co.uk
Monday 9 April 2012 12.36 EDT
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/apr/09/feminists-hail-explosion-grassroots-groups?CMP=twt_gu

It was the lads' mags – with semi-naked women in suggestive poses on their covers – being sold at eye level at her corner shop that did it.

"I just don't think I should have to look at that – it's degrading," said 17-year-old Isabella Woolford Diaz. "If people want to buy it, fine, but I don't think 11-year-old pupils should have to look at it."

Deciding to take the matter into her own hands, the student formed a feminist group at Camden school for girls, and before long a core group of 15 teenagers – boys and girls – were attending. "I was getting so frustrated at how women were portrayed and I wondered if I was just being pernickety," she said. "But I soon realised it wasn't just me."

The group is one of dozens of new feminist organisations springing up around the UK, according to the campaign group UK Feminista. Research carried out to mark the group's second birthday has revealed that the number of active grassroots feminist organisations has doubled in the past two years.

These are feminists who do not fit easily into stereotypical moulds: young and old, men and women, urbanites and country dwellers. A new breed of feminists is starting to rise up.

"It's a really exciting time. We are seeing a real resurgence in feminist activism that is moving from the margins to the mainstream," said Kat Banyard, founder of UK Feminista and author of The Equality Illusion. "People are willing to put up their hand and say they are a feminist without the fear of being ridiculed. Particularly in the past 12 months, we are seeing people standing up and willing to be counted." Like the Camden group's members, many of them are young, passionate and unafraid to take direct action.

Anna van Heeswijk, from the campaign group Object, told of a group of year 10 students from an inner-city school she had spoken to about the sexual objectification of women. The students went to their local supermarket to protest against the sale of lads' mags at eye level. They were armed with banners, horns and slogans, and before the end of the day the manager had agreed to order "modesty" covers to obscure the sexualised images of women.

"A new generation of young women across the country are sick and tired of being sexualised, objectified and trivialised," she said. "There is real power in the voices of these young women. This is a good moment for feminist activism. The tide is turning." For decades, activists have questioned whether men can be feminists, but according to campaigners men are now swelling the ranks.

Matt McCormack Evans, who founded the Anti Porn Men Project while a student at Hull University, believes more men want to become involved in the fight for gender equality and more women are willing to accept them.

"Things have really changed over the past few years, and it is becoming much more acceptable for men to challenge traditional ideas about masculinity," he said. "Lots of younger feminists want men to be involved and aren't so wary of them taking over – no one wants to see a feminist movement run by men. This is a movement with aims and goals, not a club with gatekeepers."

New groups are popping up in the most remote places. Campaigners can be found in practically every area of Britain – even the Orkney Feminist Network has 40 followers on Twitter. Michael Moore, the regional organiser for UK Feminista in Northern Ireland, said sites such as Twitter and Facebook had enabled people in even the most remote parts of the UK to tap into the debate. "Now it's as easy as sending an email to mobilise people. There's no apologies, no minutes – people can engage and thrash out issues in an online space immediately. It's really sped up the power to communicate."

Recent debate over issues such as Nadine Dorries's proposed bill for compulsory lessons on sexual abstinence for teenage girls and fears about a growing anti-abortion climate in the UK have put feminism right back on the news agenda.

And recent high-profile events, such as a series of "SlutWalks" to protest about the treatment of rape victims, have seen feminists back on the street.

As 17-year-old Nina Mega from Edinburgh put it: "Sometimes you get the idea that the world is a pretty misogynistic place and feminists are few and far between, but when you see all those like-minded people together – men and women – you just think: 'Wow.'"

Every one of their number will be needed, according to campaigners who argue that women face a barrage of challenges not seen for a generation.

With twice as many women as men expected to lose their jobs in the public sector, women hit hardest by services and benefits cuts and concerns that as state services shrink women will have to fill in the gaps, women may find hard-won gains in sexual equality are rolled back, according to the Fawcett Society.

"We are at a watershed moment for women's rights," said Anna Bird, acting chief executive of the Fawcett Society. "Women are feeling the brunt of cuts and job losses. Instead of seeing progress in women's rights we could see the pay gap between women and men widening. We can't be complacent and I think a growing number of women are aware of that."
Q&A with Kat Banyard, founder of UK Feminista

Why is feminism an 'unfinished revolution'?

While there have been enormous advances for women, many legal rights – like equal pay – are yet to become reality. Women are outnumbered four to one in parliament, women working full-time are paid on average 15% less than men, and two-thirds of low-paid workers are women. Hard-won gains – like the right to a safe, legal abortion – are under attack. And new manifestations of sexism – like the global sex industry – have put progress into reverse.

How are protests today different from the first wave of feminism?

Clearly some aspects have changed. Take technology: advances in communications technology mean social networking sites are now key mobilising tools and feminists can instantly report and broadcast footage from their own protests. Or take economics: three decades of neoliberalism have led protest targets to follow the shift of power from government to private hands. But the fundamentals of feminist activism remain the same: a struggle against privilege and profit, stretching from the bedroom to the boardroom. And, as ever, the promise of feminism is a world that will be better for all.

How can budding feminists start their own 'revolution'?

Whether it's Hugh Hefner's toxic brand of sexism, cosmetic surgery supremo Mel Braham's phoney solution to women's lack of body confidence, or the coalition's cuts to women's financial independence, you have the power to take them on. Whoever you are, wherever you are, there is something you can do. So choose your target, get organised, and get taking action.

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3) Prosecutor in Martin Case Will Alone Determine Its Merits
By LIZETTE ALVAREZ and JOHN SCHWARTZ
April 9, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/10/us/grand-jury-review-skipped-in-trayvon-martin-case.html?hp

MIAMI — Angela B. Corey, a Republican state attorney with a reputation for toughness, has decided not to seek a grand jury review of the Trayvon Martin shooting, keeping the resolution of a case that has transfixed the nation solely in her hands.

Ms. Corey, 57, who was appointed special prosecutor in the case by Florida’s governor and attorney general, must decide herself how to proceed with the particularly difficult case, in which many facts are in dispute and no witnesses have come forward publicly. She alone must determine whether to file charges against George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch coordinator who shot and killed the unarmed Mr. Martin, or to drop the case.

The decision on Monday about how to proceed puts Ms. Corey not only at the center of a national discussion of race and violence — Mr. Zimmerman, 28, is Hispanic; Mr. Martin, 17, was black — but also of the finer points of law. The fact that no arrest has been made nor legal action taken in the Feb. 26 shooting has enraged many people across the country and has led to angry marches and protests.

The pressure to bring charges is “unbelievable,” said Tor J. Friedman, a criminal defense lawyer in Tallahassee. “We always talk about a rush to judgment in other cases,” he said, but in this case the question is more like, “Why wasn’t this person taken to the town square and flogged in front of everybody?’ ”

But legal experts say the need for caution over speed is especially great in a case like this one. Mr. Zimmerman said he acted in self-defense, and law enforcement officials chose not to charge him under Florida’s lenient self-defense law, known as Stand Your Ground. Under the law, any person who perceives a threat to his life is not required to attempt a retreat and has a right to use a weapon. It requires law enforcement officials to prove that a suspect did not act in self-defense, and sets the case on a slow track.

Unless investigators find witnesses or direct evidence of the confrontation preceding Mr. Martin’s death, such as signs of a struggle, prosecutors would have to build a circumstantial case, often the hardest to make. In high-profile cases, the constitutional principle of the presumption of innocence can be especially strong — another reason to proceed with care, according to legal experts.

Florida criminal law, like most states, does not require a rush to file charges in such a case, Mr. Friedman said; the statute of limitations in manslaughter cases is measured in years, not weeks. Mr. Friedman, a former prosecutor, said that it served no one to take a defendant to trial before the evidence for a conviction could be collected; a prosecutor, he said, has “an ethical obligation” to build and believe in a case that can be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

Once the evidence is in hand, Ms. Corey will have to determine not just whether to file charges but if so, which ones. By stating that she will not be using the grand jury, she has signaled that charges of first-degree murder are not on the table. In Florida, those charges can be issued only by a grand jury, and require a finding that the act was premeditated. A more likely charge under Florida law is manslaughter, but lesser charges like aggravated battery with a firearm are also a possibility, Mr. Friedman said.

Ms. Corey’s decision to forgo a grand jury is not unusual. Like other chief prosecutors in Florida, she typically steers clear of grand juries, unless required as in requests to try juveniles as adults.

Jeffrey S. Weiner, a criminal defense lawyer in Miami, said, “This is a courageous decision, no matter what she decides to do. A grand jury would have been a cop-out.”

While Ms. Corey’s office cautioned that bypassing the grand jury should not be interpreted as an indication of how she would decide to handle the case, she is widely considered one of Florida’s most aggressive prosecutors. When she first ran for state attorney in 2008 , she joked that she was so tough on crime that she would throw her own mother in jail if she broke the law.

“I don’t play,” she said, “even when it’s people in my own family.”

But her career has not been without controversy. Her zeal in prosecuting defendants, even first-time offenders, and her close ties to the police have rankled some African-Americans in Jacksonville, a city that is 30 percent black. They see a criminal justice system that is clogged with black faces and say that Ms. Corey is currying favor with the large number of conservative voters in her area.

“You’ve got these first-time offenders and that doesn’t make any human sense,” said R. L. Gundy, the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference chapter in Jacksonville. “Her numbers go up, and that makes her look good, but you are exploiting poor people.”

Others say race is not a factor in her decisions. The operative words for Ms. Corey are criminals and victims, both her supporters and critics say.

In an interview last week, Ms. Corey said that she makes no apologies for tackling what she called an unacceptably high crime rate in the area. Repeat offenders were routinely treated too leniently in the past, she said.

“We promised tough justice and aggressive prosecutions,” she said. “And we followed through on that. The community is thrilled.”

The flip-side to her hard-nosed approach is her solidarity with victims and their families, who often stay in touch with her, sending letters or Christmas cards, years after a trial.

But this trait has exposed Ms. Corey to charges that her emotions sometimes interfere with her judgment. Bill White, who spent years as Jacksonville’s chief public defender, said she was a formidable opponent. She was smart and well-prepared, and disliked plea bargains more than most prosecutors, he said, adding that in court, she would openly brandish her sympathy for victims before a jury.

“The zeal she feels for a victim or a cause overrides the level of zeal you are allowed to have as a prosecutor,” Mr. White said.

Many point to the contentious case of Cristian Fernandez as an example of overzealousness and a lapse in judgment. Cristian is charged with first-degree murder in the 2011 death of his 2-year-old half-brother, David. He was 12 at the time but is being tried as an adult. The boy is accused of slamming David’s head into a bookcase while he was baby-sitting. If convicted, Cristian would serve life in prison without parole.

But Cristian’s short life has been marred by astonishing hardship. His mother was 12 when she gave birth to him, and he spent time in foster care and was abused repeatedly by his step-father, his lawyers have said. His mother also failed to take the unconscious David to the hospital for eight hours after the incident. She pleaded guilty to aggravated manslaughter.

The case, like Mr. Martin’s, stirred outrage on social media and in the local community. “Where is your compassion?” was a common reaction, said Michael Hallett, chairman of the University of North Florida’s criminology department, who recently published a study of Ms. Corey’s record.

Ms. Corey said she was not asking for life in prison, but seeking a “middle ground.”

“The fact remains he committed murder,” she said of Cristian.

Ms. Corey was named special prosecutor in the Martin case after Norman Wolfinger, the state attorney for Seminole County, stepped aside on March 22 after coming under intense criticism for moving too slowly. The state’s attorney general, Pam Bondi, who advised Gov. Rick Scott to choose Ms. Corey, said she considers her to be a role model and mentor.

Ms. Corey, who moved in with a small team of seasoned prosecutors, has declined to discuss her investigation of the case publicly.

As state attorney, Ms. Corey is responsible for the three-county Fourth Judicial Circuit, which includes Jacksonville, which had the highest homicide rates in the state for 10 years, ending in 2009. She has filed more charges, taken many more cases to trial and won more convictions than her predecessor, according to Mr. Hallet’s study. She is less likely to dismiss charges and is particularly tough on repeat offenders, he found.

This comes as crime rates have declined and arrests in Duval County have dropped by 27.5 percent in the past four years. “We set out to explain why this is happening here and why it is so different than other places,” Mr. Hallett said of his study. “The answer is Angela Corey.”

If Ms. Corey decided to file charges against Mr. Zimmerman, a judge must hold a special pretrial hearing under the Stand Your Ground law to determine whether Mr. Zimmerman’s actions fall within the protections afforded by the statute. If so, he can end the proceeding there, granting the defendant immunity from criminal prosecution and civil lawsuits, said Mr. Weiner, who successfully defended a client recently under the law.

If the case does move forward from there, then the business of the justice system — determining guilt or innocence — can proceed.

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4) Food Stamps Helped Reduce Poverty Rate, Study Finds
By SABRINA TAVERNISE
April 9, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/10/us/food-stamp-program-helping-reduce-poverty.html?ref=us

WASHINGTON — A new study by the Agriculture Department has found that food stamps, one of the country’s largest social safety net programs, reduced the poverty rate substantially during the recent recession. The food stamp program, formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, reduced the poverty rate by nearly 8 percent in 2009, the most recent year included in the study, a significant impact for a social program whose effects often go unnoticed by policy makers.

The food stamp program is one of the largest antipoverty efforts in the country, serving more than 46 million people. But the extra income it provides is not counted in the government’s formal poverty measure, an omission that makes it difficult for officials to see the effects of the policy and get an accurate figure for the number of people beneath the poverty threshold, which was about $22,000 for a family of four in 2009.

“SNAP plays a crucial, but often underappreciated, role in alleviating poverty,” said Stacy Dean, an expert on the program with the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, a Washington-based research group that focuses on social programs and budget policy.

Enrollment in the food stamp program grew substantially during the recession and immediately after, rising by 45 percent from January of 2009 to January of this year, according to monthly figures on the U.S.D.A. Web site. The stimulus package pushed by President Obama and enacted by Congress significantly boosted funding for the program as a temporary relief for families who had fallen on hard times in the recession.

But the steady rise tapered off in January, when enrollment was down slightly from December, a change in direction that Ms. Dean said could signal that the recovery was having an effect even among poor families.

The program’s effects have long been known among poverty researchers, and for Ms. Dean, the most interesting aspect of the report was the political context into which it was released. In a year of elections and rising budget pressures, social programs like food stamps are coming under increased scrutiny from Republican legislators, who argue that they create a kind of entitlement society.

In an e-mail to supporters on Monday, Representative Allen B. West, a Florida Republican, called the increase in food stamp use a “highly disturbing trend.” He said that he had noticed a sign outside a gas station in his district over the weekend alerting customers that food stamps were accepted.

“This is not something we should be proud to promote,” he said.

Kevin W. Concannon, the under secretary of agriculture for food, nutrition and consumer services, argued that since the changes to the welfare system in the 1990s, the food stamp program was one of the few remaining antipoverty programs that provided benefits with few conditions beyond income level and legal residence.

“The numbers of people on SNAP reflect the economic challenges people are facing across the country,” Mr. Concannon said. “Folks who have lost their jobs or are getting fewer hours. These people haven’t been invented.”

The study, which examined nine years of data, tried to measure the program’s effects on people whose incomes remained below the poverty threshold. The program lifted the average poor person’s income up about six percent closer to the line over the length of the study, making poverty less severe. When the benefits were included in the income of families with children, the result was that children below the threshold moved about 11 percent closer to the line.

The program had a stronger effect on children because they are more likely to be poor and they make up about half of the program’s participants.

“Even if SNAP doesn’t have the effect of lifting someone out of poverty, it moves them further up,” Mr. Concannon said.

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5) Chicago: Former Mayor Will Testify on Accusations of Police Torture
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
April 10, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/11/us/chicago-former-mayor-will-testify-on-accusations-of-police-torture.html?ref=us

Lawyers say former Mayor Richard M. Daley of Chicago has agreed to answer questions under oath about allegations that he was part of a conspiracy to cover up police torture. Flint Taylor, a lawyer for a former inmate who is suing the city over the allegations, said the city agreed during a federal hearing on Tuesday to make Mr. Daley available. No date has been set. Mr. Daley’s office did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Mr. Daley is named in a civil suit filed by the former inmate, Michael Tillman, who claims that Chicago police officers used waterboarding techniques on him decades ago, using soda, to make him confess to a crime he did not commit. Mr. Tillman served nearly 24 years in prison before his rape and murder conviction was vacated in 2010.

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6) Defend Joe Callahan
Send contributions to:
Joe Callahan Support Committee; 2919 Polk St.NE; Minneapolis, Mn. 55418
For More information about Joe’s case: joecallahansupport@hotmail.com
For more information on the April 14 gathering: defendjoe@gmail.com
Joe Callahan Support Committee

Joe is a supporter of immigrant workers, a trade unionist, and a community activist. He is currently facing serious charges of “smuggling” or “human trafficking”, brought by Canadian authorities in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Learn more about Joe’s case and how you can support his defense.

In July, 2011, following the departure from the United States of 2 Salvadoran immigrants, seeking asylum to Canada, Joe Callahan was arrested, jailed, and charged with “aiding and abetting an immigration without a visa” and “providing false and misleading information.” While Joe was in jail for one month in Thunder Bay, Ontario, the Canadian authorities added a charge of “smuggling” or “human trafficking”. He still awaits trial, which could lead to a sentence of up to 10 years.

Joe works for immigrant rights. He is NOT a human trafficker.
Joe is not a criminal. He is an activist.
Support Joe in fighting these charges.
Demand that all charges against Joe be dropped.

Joe has been a Latin America solidarity activist for over 30 years. He has been a union activist for over 40 years including: the United Auto Workers, the Amalgamated Transit Union, United Steelworkers, and International Brotherhood of Teamsters. He opposes the death penalty, struggling against its reinstatement in Minnesota for the past 10 years. He has been anti-war since the Vietnam War. He resides in Minneapolis. He needs your support.

The Support Committee is working to get people to attend Joe’s trial (not yet scheduled.)

Send contributions to: Joe Callahan Support Committee; 2919 Polk St.NE; Minneapolis, Mn. 55418

For More information about Joe’s case: joecallahansupport@hotmail.com

For more information on the April 14 gathering: defendjoe@gmail.com
Joe Callahan Support Committee

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7) Vaccinations Begin in a Cholera-Ravaged Haiti
By DEBORAH SONTAG
April 12, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/13/world/americas/vaccinations-begin-in-a-cholera-ravaged-haiti.html?ref=world

A year and a half after cholera first struck Haiti, a tiny portion of the population on Thursday began getting vaccinated against the waterborne disease that has infected more than 530,000 Haitians and killed more than 7,040.

Organizers of the vaccination campaign, who have been pushing to do this since the epidemic began, cleared their final political hurdle this week when a national bioethics committee approved their plan to use all available doses of the cheapest cholera vaccine to immunize about 1 percent of the population.

On Thursday, tens of thousands of slum dwellers in Port-au-Prince took their first of two doses of the oral vaccine, Shanchol; tens of thousands of rural residents of a rice-growing community near St. Marc will begin this weekend. The second dose will be administered in two weeks.

The organizers — Partners in Health and Gheskio, which also collaborate on H.I.V. and AIDS care — had hoped to beat the spring rains that spread the cholera germ. But they ran into an unanticipated roadblock and the rains have already started to drench the country, causing flooding and a spike in cases.

The roadblock surfaced in March when a Haitian radio station raised questions about the vaccination campaign, which had been approved by the Haitian health minister last year.

The radio station asked if the campaign could be seen as a medical experiment using poor Haitians as guinea pigs, which prompted the bioethics committee to take up the issue.

Announcing this week that the “pilot project” would move forward, Dr. Gabriel Timothée, director general of the Haitian Health Ministry, said, “This is not a study, it is not a vaccine trial, it is not an experiment.”

The use of cholera vaccine in Haiti has been mired in controversy since the epidemic began in mid-October of 2010.

World health authorities initially opposed vaccination, citing cost, logistical challenges and limited vaccine supplies.

Shanchol was still under review by the World Health Organization then, “with significant concerns in that review about safety and manufacturing practices,” said Jon Kim Andrus, deputy director of the Pan American Health Organization.

But proponents argued that the vaccine could save lives, reduce the caseload and buy time until long-range solutions like water and sanitation systems could be put in place.

They called for expediting approval for Shanchol, for increasing vaccine production by offering manufacturers purchase commitments and for using available doses to immunize especially vulnerable people.

World health authorities eventually endorsed a trial campaign, but the Haitian government did not want to stir political trouble by choosing who would get the vaccine.

Time passed; a new government took power; Shanchol, which is manufactured in India, was approved. And the small vaccination campaign has begun, with organizers hoping that it will succeed and lead to a broader use of the vaccine in Haiti.

“It’s the ethical and equitable thing to do,” said Dr. Paul Farmer, a co-founder of Partners in Health. “If cholera had exploded in the United States like it did in Haiti, everybody would have gotten the vaccine by now.”

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8) Inflation Is Outrunning The Earnings of Workers
By REUTERS
April 13, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/14/business/economy/consumer-inflation-up-modestly.html?ref=business

WASHINGTON (Reuters) — Consumer prices rose modestly in March amid signs that a spike in gasoline costs was ebbing, but inflation still outpaced workers’ earnings, the Labor Department said Friday.

Consumer prices increased 0.3 percent last month, the department said. Gasoline prices rose 1.7 percent, a slowing from February when costs at the pump rose more than three times as quickly.

Still, workers’ earnings fell 0.4 percent in March after adjusting for the increase in prices.

Other data showed that consumer sentiment slipped in April as higher gasoline prices hit household budgets.

“The underlying problem of inflation outstripping wage gains remains. That is the danger for the economy in the long run,” said Joseph Trevisani, a market strategist at Worldwide Markets in Woodcliff Lake, N.J.

Core inflation, which strips out food and energy prices, climbed 0.2 percent, pushed higher by rising rents, medical care costs and used car prices.

In the 12 months to March, core consumer prices increased 2.3 percent after rising 2.2 percent in February. The persistence of core inflation could affect the Federal Reserve’s maneuvering room for stimulus. “This could hem the Fed in,” said Boris Schlossberg, head of research at GFT Forex in Jersey City, N.J.

Overall consumer prices rose 2.7 percent compared with a year ago, down from a reading of 2.9 percent in February.

Still, consumers appear anxious they are falling behind. The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s preliminary reading for the consumer sentiment index dipped slightly to 75.7 in April. Analysts had expected the reading to hold steady.

At the same time, consumer expectations for inflation over the coming year declined, reflecting the slower rise in gasoline prices.

And in March, a drop in electricity costs eased some of the bite from higher gasoline prices. Electricity costs fell 0.8 percent, the steepest decline since June.

Food prices climbed 0.2 percent last month, with poultry prices up by the most since January 2008.

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9) Death Row Inmate’s Best Lawyer Was Himself
By ADAM LIPTAK
April 16, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/us/inmates-ordeal-shows-vagaries-of-capital-cases.html?hp

WASHINGTON — Albert Holland Jr., a death row inmate in Florida, has no legal training and seems to be suffering from a mental illness — “perhaps a disorder involving paranoia or delusional thoughts,” a federal judge wrote recently.

But he turns out to be a pretty good lawyer. Two years ago, in allowing Mr. Holland a fresh chance to make his case after his court-appointed lawyer blew a crucial deadline, the Supreme Court praised Mr. Holland’s legal acumen. Indeed, Justice Stephen G. Breyer wrote, Mr. Holland had had a better understanding of the complicated time limits for challenging death sentences in federal court than his lawyer had.

Mr. Holland made good use of the opportunity the Supreme Court gave him. A couple of weeks ago, he won a decision granting him a new trial. In the process, he opened a window on the astoundingly spotty quality of court-appointed counsel in capital cases.

The lawyer whose work the justices had considered was the least of it; he had merely been unresponsive and incompetent. Mr. Holland’s earlier lawyers had failed him in much more colorful ways.

Consider Kenneth Delegal, who was assigned to defend Mr. Holland at a 1996 retrial on charges that he had killed a Pompano Beach police officer in 1990. Mr. Delegal was removed from the case after being sent to a mental health facility. Later, the two men would see each other at the Broward County jail, where Mr. Delegal was held on drug and domestic violence charges.

The next lawyer, James Lewis, was a friend of Mr. Delegal’s and had shared office space with him. When Mr. Delegal went to court after his removal from Mr. Holland’s case, seeking to be paid about $40,000 for his work on it, the new lawyer testified on behalf of the old one, saying the fees had been “reasonable and necessary.”

Mr. Delegal died of a drug overdose about a month after the fee hearing, and a local paper asked his former colleague Mr. Lewis about his troubles. “I heard some rumors,” Mr. Lewis said, “but I chose not to know.”

This series of lawyers, Judge Patricia A. Seitz of the Federal District Court in Miami wrote this month, “does assist in understanding why someone, perhaps predisposed to paranoia due to a mental disturbance, may have wanted self-representation over court-appointed counsel.”

In granting Mr. Holland a new trial, Judge Seitz ruled that a state judge had violated Mr. Holland’s rights under the Sixth Amendment by refusing to let him represent himself.

At the 1996 retrial, which, like the first, ended in a murder conviction and a death sentence, Mr. Holland asked to represent himself at least 10 times, saying he did not trust Mr. Lewis and could in any event do a better job himself.

Judge Charles M. Greene of the state circuit court in Fort Lauderdale denied the requests, saying Mr. Holland did not have “any specific legal training.” That is not the constitutional standard; indeed, the Supreme Court has said that “technical legal knowledge” is not required.

The relevant questions, Judge Seitz wrote, were whether Mr. Holland understood that he had a right to a court-appointed lawyer and whether he was mentally competent to decide to waive that right.

When Mr. Holland was allowed to address the court, he seemed to make sense. He said, for instance, that Mr. Lewis “denied me effective assistance of counsel because his loyalty was impaired.”

Mr. Holland also told the court that his legal research indicated that his indictment on a charge of attempted felony murder was flawed because there was no such crime in Florida. (“It is noteworthy,” Judge Seitz wrote, that “this statement had a factual basis.” Indeed, the Florida Supreme Court had said as much in 1995 in an unrelated case.)

At other times, Mr. Holland exhibited a certain flair, though it was perhaps not to everyone’s taste.

“From what I have seen in the evidence,” he told Judge Greene, “Ray Charles could come in here and represent himself, and Stevie Wonder, so I don’t need much legal training to do all that.”

Judge Greene acknowledged that Mr. Holland had “voiced concerns and issues in a most eloquent manner” and had expressed himself in a “very coherent and organized manner.”

When it came time to sentence Mr. Holland to death, Judge Greene said he gave little weight to Mr. Holland’s history of mental illness, though he had twice been found not guilty by reason of insanity for robberies in Washington and had been involuntarily hospitalized in the 1980s for four years.

As proof that Mr. Holland was no longer mentally ill, Judge Greene praised him as an able advocate who had “correctly argued case law and factual issues to the court.” His legal skills, then, were proof that he was fit to be executed — but not good enough that he be allowed to defend himself.

These days, Mr. Holland is represented by Todd G. Scher, a Miami Beach lawyer who won in the Supreme Court and persuaded Judge Seitz to order a new trial. A spokesman for the Florida attorney general’s office said prosecutors would ask Judge Seitz to reconsider her ruling.

Mr. Scher said he did not know who would represent Mr. Holland at a retrial. For now, he said, what was clear was that a federal judge had found “a blatant Sixth Amendment violation.”

“It shows that he was right,” Mr. Scher said of his client. “He had concerns about his prior series of lawyer, and his concerns turned out to be valid.”

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10) Europe’s Economic Suicide
By PAUL KRUGMAN
April 15, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/16/opinion/krugman-europes-economic-suicide.html?hp

On Saturday The Times reported on an apparently growing phenomenon in Europe: “suicide by economic crisis,” people taking their own lives in despair over unemployment and business failure. It was a heartbreaking story. But I’m sure I wasn’t the only reader, especially among economists, wondering if the larger story isn’t so much about individuals as about the apparent determination of European leaders to commit economic suicide for the Continent as a whole.

Just a few months ago I was feeling some hope about Europe. You may recall that late last fall Europe appeared to be on the verge of financial meltdown; but the European Central Bank, Europe’s counterpart to the Fed, came to the Continent’s rescue. It offered Europe’s banks open-ended credit lines as long as they put up the bonds of European governments as collateral; this directly supported the banks and indirectly supported the governments, and put an end to the panic.

The question then was whether this brave and effective action would be the start of a broader rethink, whether European leaders would use the breathing space the bank had created to reconsider the policies that brought matters to a head in the first place.

But they didn’t. Instead, they doubled down on their failed policies and ideas. And it’s getting harder and harder to believe that anything will get them to change course.

Consider the state of affairs in Spain, which is now the epicenter of the crisis. Never mind talk of recession; Spain is in full-on depression, with the overall unemployment rate at 23.6 percent, comparable to America at the depths of the Great Depression, and the youth unemployment rate over 50 percent. This can’t go on — and the realization that it can’t go on is what is sending Spanish borrowing costs ever higher.

In a way, it doesn’t really matter how Spain got to this point — but for what it’s worth, the Spanish story bears no resemblance to the morality tales so popular among European officials, especially in Germany. Spain wasn’t fiscally profligate — on the eve of the crisis it had low debt and a budget surplus. Unfortunately, it also had an enormous housing bubble, a bubble made possible in large part by huge loans from German banks to their Spanish counterparts. When the bubble burst, the Spanish economy was left high and dry; Spain’s fiscal problems are a consequence of its depression, not its cause.

Nonetheless, the prescription coming from Berlin and Frankfurt is, you guessed it, even more fiscal austerity.

This is, not to mince words, just insane. Europe has had several years of experience with harsh austerity programs, and the results are exactly what students of history told you would happen: such programs push depressed economies even deeper into depression. And because investors look at the state of a nation’s economy when assessing its ability to repay debt, austerity programs haven’t even worked as a way to reduce borrowing costs.

What is the alternative? Well, in the 1930s — an era that modern Europe is starting to replicate in ever more faithful detail — the essential condition for recovery was exit from the gold standard. The equivalent move now would be exit from the euro, and restoration of national currencies. You may say that this is inconceivable, and it would indeed be a hugely disruptive event both economically and politically. But continuing on the present course, imposing ever-harsher austerity on countries that are already suffering Depression-era unemployment, is what’s truly inconceivable.

So if European leaders really wanted to save the euro they would be looking for an alternative course. And the shape of such an alternative is actually fairly clear. The Continent needs more expansionary monetary policies, in the form of a willingness — an announced willingness — on the part of the European Central Bank to accept somewhat higher inflation; it needs more expansionary fiscal policies, in the form of budgets in Germany that offset austerity in Spain and other troubled nations around the Continent’s periphery, rather than reinforcing it. Even with such policies, the peripheral nations would face years of hard times. But at least there would be some hope of recovery.

What we’re actually seeing, however, is complete inflexibility. In March, European leaders signed a fiscal pact that in effect locks in fiscal austerity as the response to any and all problems. Meanwhile, key officials at the central bank are making a point of emphasizing the bank’s willingness to raise rates at the slightest hint of higher inflation.

So it’s hard to avoid a sense of despair. Rather than admit that they’ve been wrong, European leaders seem determined to drive their economy — and their society — off a cliff. And the whole world will pay the price.

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11) From the Birthplace of Big Brother
New York Times Editorial
April 15, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/16/opinion/from-the-birthplace-of-big-brother.html?hp

The George W. Bush team must be consumed with envy. Britain’s government is preparing sweeping new legislation that would let the country’s domestic intelligence agencies monitor all private telephone, e-mail, text message, social network and Internet use in the country, bypassing requirements for judicial warrants.

As with all such legislation on both sides of the Atlantic, sponsors promote the bill as a necessary new tool to keep the public safer from would-be terrorists, child molesters and common criminals. We are not convinced. What such sweeping new powers surely would do is compromise the privacy and liberty of law-abiding British citizens without reasonable justification.

Proper warrants, in Britain, as in the United States, are not hard to obtain whenever there is reasonable cause. And without such cause, the authorities should not have unchecked power to snoop on private conversations. As Britain’s ongoing hacking scandals demonstrate, unflattering private information in police hands can be selectively leaked or bartered to unprincipled media outlets with painful consequences.

The measures now being contemplated would betray the election promises of both parties in Prime Minister David Cameron’s coalition to be more protective of traditional British civil liberties than their Labor Party predecessors. When Tony Blair proposed similar legislation in 2006, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, both then in opposition, rightly opposed it and Labor backed down.

The government’s proposed law will not be unveiled until next month. But the British press is full of semi-official leaks. The Sunday Times of London reported a few weeks ago that Internet companies would be required to install hardware that would let intelligence agencies routinely monitor headers and patterns of communication and give the agencies the capacity to monitor the contents of individual communications without a warrant.

There is still time for more reasonable voices to prevail. David Davis, for example, a leading Conservative backbencher, has publicly challenged the proposal for not focusing on terrorists or criminals, but on “absolutely everybody.” He rightly characterizes it as “an unnecessary extension of the ability of the state to snoop on ordinary innocent people in vast numbers.”

Britain has no formal equivalent of America’s constitutional guarantee against unreasonable search, although that concept is rooted in English common law. But Britain has its own long and admirable civil liberties traditions going back to the Magna Carta of 1215.

With London’s Olympics just months away, we recognize the need for vigilance against terrorist plots. But this legislation would go much too far. It needs to be rethought to protect the privacy of innocent British citizens.

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12) Media Firms Sue to Force Opening of Zimmerman File
By JENNIFER PRESTON
April 16, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/us/media-firms-sue-to-force-opening-of-zimmerman-file.html?ref=us

Lawyers representing more than 20 media companies, including The New York Times, on Monday asked the Florida judge overseeing the trial of George Zimmerman to unseal the court file.

The Seminole County judge who presided over Mr. Zimmerman’s brief court appearance on Thursday agreed to a request by Mark M. O’Mara, Mr. Zimmerman’s lawyer, to keep private records and documents related to the case. State Attorney Angela B. Corey did not object to Mr. O’Mara’s request during the hearing.

In an eight-page motion, the lawyers for the media companies argued that the records were improperly sealed because Mr. O’Mara did not submit evidence showing that closing the records was necessary to prevent a “serious and imminent” threat to the administration of justice.

George Freeman, assistant general counsel and vice president of The Times, said the judge did not go through the procedural steps required before a file can be sealed. “Just because a case gets a lot of publicity does not mean that papers should be sealed,” Mr. Freeman said.

Mr. O’Mara had no comment on the motion because he had just received the court papers and was reviewing them, said Jimmy Woods, a spokesman.

In an interview, Ms. Corey said that she was also reviewing the motion and the concerns outlined by the media companies. “We are doing our best to balance everyone’s rights,” she said.

She said the goal for both prosecutors and defense lawyers in high-profile cases was to maintain the integrity of the case for both sides and “to make sure that potential jurors are not tainted.”

“In some extremely high-profile cases, we do attempt to limit the amount of details that get published,” she said. “The unfortunate thing in this case is that a lot of information was published.”

Holland & Knight, the Miami-based law firm representing the media companies, argued that it would be possible to empanel an impartial jury should the court records be made public. Other media companies that joined in the brief include The Associated Press, CNN, Gannett and the McClatchy Company, publisher of The Miami Herald.

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13) Brazil: Inmates Hold Hostages
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
April 16, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/world/americas/brazil-inmates-hold-hostages.html?ref=world

Inmates armed with guns and knives seized control of a prison in Aracaju, in northeastern Brazil, and local news media reported Monday that the prisoners were holding about 80 visitors and two guards hostage. The 470 inmates have released more than 40 hostages, according to G1, the Web site of the Globo television network. The report said inmates were demanding a change in the prison’s leadership as well as better treatment and quicker trials.

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14) New York’s Poverty Rate Rises, Study Finds
By SAM ROBERTS
April 17, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/nyregion/new-york-citys-poverty-rate-reaches-highest-level-since-2005.html?ref=nyregion

The number of New Yorkers classified as poor in 2010 increased by nearly 100,000 from the year before, raising the poverty rate by 1.3 percentage points to 21 percent — the highest level and the largest year-to-year increase since the city adopted a more detailed definition of poverty in 2005.

The recession and the sluggish recovery have taken a particularly harsh toll on children, with more than one in four under 18 living in poverty, according to an analysis by the city’s Center for Economic Opportunity that will be released on Tuesday.

Families with children were also vulnerable. They had a poverty rate of 23 percent, and a significant number of households were struggling to remain above the poverty line. Even families with two full-time earners were more likely to be considered poor in 2010; their ranks swelled by 1.3 percentage points to 5 percent compared with 2009.

By the city measure, more than 1.7 million residents were poor in 2010, the last year for which an analysis could be calculated.

The center placed most of the blame on reduced earnings caused by higher unemployment during the recession, which struck in New York later than in the rest of the country. The analysis emphasized that the poverty rate would have soared higher — to 23.7 percent over all, and to 27.6 percent for families with children — without the expansion of government tax credits, food stamps and other benefits since 2007.

In part because of a city outreach program, the number of New Yorkers using food stamps catapulted to more than one million in 2010 from 773,000 in 2008.

Unlike the official federal poverty rate, the city’s measure takes into account tax credits and benefits as well as expenses, like medical care, child care, commuting and housing. Those expenses increased the city’s version of the poverty threshold for a two-adult, two-child family to $30,055 in 2010, compared with the federal threshold of $22,113.

By the federal measure, 7.7 percent of New Yorkers were living in extreme poverty, meaning below 50 percent of the poverty line. By the city’s measure, 5.5 percent were in extreme poverty.

The city classified 12.4 percent of New York residents as near poor — living at 100 percent through 124 percent of the poverty level — compared with 5.4 percent by the federal measure.

From 2009 to 2010, according to the federal standard, the city’s poverty rate increased 1.5 percentage points to 18.8 percent.

The poverty rate had declined for years from a high of 20.5 percent in 2005 but began climbing in 2008, when the recession hit. Hispanic and black New Yorkers, including children, were hit especially hard.

“Given the priority that policy makers have given to child poverty,” the analysis by Mark Levitan, the center’s director of poverty research, said, “the rise in the poverty rate for children, from 22.9 percent in 2008 to 25.8 percent in 2010, is particularly notable.”

The analysis concluded that without government programs — including the Bush administration’s tax rebate and the Obama administration’s stimulus package of unemployment benefits and tax credits — the poverty rate would have risen even higher. The analysis recommended subsidized employment programs and expanded child tax credits to help alleviate poverty.

Robert Doar, the city’s human resources commissioner, sought to emphasize city programs that helped keep the poverty rate from climbing even more.

“We have to continue applying the policy instruments we have in place,” he said in an interview. “Our city’s economy is not stronger than the rest of the country’s by accident; our success compared to the nation has been a result of Mayor Bloomberg’s sound policy decisions.”

Among racial and ethnic groups, Hispanics recorded the highest poverty rate (26 percent), followed by Asians (25 percent), blacks (21.7 percent) and non-Hispanic whites (15.2 percent). Noncitizens had a higher rate (27.8 percent) than native-born (19.9 percent) and naturalized citizens (17.8 percent).

“What’s happening is we’re building an enormous group of people who are not working at all,” David R. Jones, president of the Community Service Society of New York, an antipoverty group, said in an interview. “We may continue to see high levels of poverty even as the recession recedes.”

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