Monday, October 31, 2005

Travis Morales / Revolution

Dennis Kucinich, In These Times

[Duchess Note ... Recently a fellow NYC Kucitizen (now living in Texas) wrote a brilliant reply to Michelle Malkin's article called "2000" IS A BOGUS NUMBER. I highly recommend the reading of this letter, which has been posted on two websites ... Uruknet & Counter Currents. The links are listed below. Peace, Justice & Solidarity!]

One Is Not A Bogus Number
by Linda Zoblotsky

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... The opposite of bravery is not cowardice but conformity. Robert Anthony

William Hughes, Baltimore Chronicle & Sentinel
It took four years to kill 2,000 American in Vietnam.

Saturday, October 29, 2005


Elizabeth de la Vega,
In the wake of Fitzgerald's indictment of Dick Cheney's "alter ego" Scooter Libby, here is what we should and should not expect to happen next.

Bethany Kohoutek, Rocky Mountain Bullhorn
Former presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich challenges his party to step up.

Stephen Pizzo, News for Real
Legal experts are already debating whether the Wilsons have a case. These are the same experts who thought Jones' case was going to get laughed out of court -- instead, it set off a sequence of events that led to Clinton's impeachment.

Commentary by Stephen Zunes

The first in a series of oral histories from Hurricane Katrina survivors. Clarice B. is a 66-year-old healthcare worker who spent five days on a highway overpass.

Robert Kuttner, The Boston Globe

Patrick Letellier, AlterNet
Right-wingers are frothing over a new study showing that sexual preference among fruit flies (and maybe humans, too) has genetic roots.

Commentary by Medea Benjamin

Stephen Pizzo, News for Real
Ninety percent of Americans believe the Bush administration is guilty of illegal or unethical behavior in the CIA leak case. Where does that leave our president?

Friday, October 28, 2005

Special Screening of "A History of Violence" with David Cronenberg, Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello and William Hurt In Person
Wednesday, November 9th
8:00 pm
Walter Reade Theater
165 West 65th Street
New York City
Widely hailed as one of the year's best films, "A History of Violence" is the story of Tom Stall (Viggo Mortensen), who lives with his wife Edie (Maria Bello) and two children in a sleepy Indiana town, operating the local diner. One day two tough guys roll into town and eventually into Tom's diner. Soon they're robbing the place and threatening to kill everyone in it; Tom manages to subdue the two of them, and soon he's a national hero. Helping some people who've been looking for Tom to discover exactly where to find him. One of the most consistently provocative filmmakers of our time, David Cronenberg, together with his stars Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello, and William Hurt, will discuss "A History of Violence" immediately following this screening with Film Society Program Director Richard Peña.

STATISTIC ON VIOLENCE ... In 2001, almost 21,000 homicides and 31,000 suicides occurred; and almost 1.8 million people were assaulted, while about 323,000 harmed themselves and were treated in hospital emergency departments in the U.S. [Survellance for Fatal & Nonfatal Injuries - 2001, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention National Vital Statistics System]

Need to convert your old VHS tapes to DVD? Want to preserve your memories forever? [Look no further and contact Kristina at] Let us tell your story AND turn your home videos, plus pictures into gorgeous DVDs! With the holidays fast approaching ... these will make great gifts for family and friends.

* Watch your photos come to life on a custom DVD slide show, complete with music.
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* Performers - get the gig! We'll edit your reel. Come away with a professional montage. Add titles, stills, headshots and music.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

On Saturday, October 8th, I headed up to Yonkers to do volunteer work at the Ferret Shelter. It’s been a few months since my last visit. Joanne and I were busy with many projects and events. Received an email from Joanne a few days before October 8th and she hoped I could make it on short notice. Absolutely! No trouble at all. Spending time with the darling wee ones brings me contentment and is good therapy. Silly me, I got abit messed up on “time” that morning and instead of leaving my apartment at 11am, I left at 10am. Didn’t realize my blunder until I’m at Joanne’s and standing under an umbrella [it’s raining hard] waiting for her to come home. After 10 minutes or so, she drives up and inquires as to why I’m early. Here I’m thinking its 1pm and it’s actually 12pm. OMG! Duh! Sigh! Ah well, I’m there, so might as well put in the extra time. Before heading into the shelter portion of her home, we have a good laugh and catch up on news. During the afternoon I took care [ie: furkid hygiene & grooming] of two groups of ferrets. There were four in the first group and they were totally fascinated with the sound I made from snapping my fingers.

If they were hiding, all I had to do was snap my fingers and they’d come running to investigate. It was so cute. The second group was made up of mostly young, active ferrets. They were more of a challenge when it came to grooming. Also, a friend of Joanne’s came by to help clean the “bird room”. Joanne showed me how to administer a certain type of medication to a sick furkid. The wee one behaved nicely while I took care of her. Enjoyed a relaxing chatty tea break with the ladies, ate some yummy coffee cake and then back to the shelter. Finished up the cleaning chores, freshened up and then took Metro North back to NYC.

[Photo at Left taken in March 2003 - Me holding a ferret]

The following evening, October 9th, I was invited by fellow NYC Kucitizen [Paul] to go to the movies with him and two other gents [ie: Bud & Dan]. Paul wanted to treat me to an early birthday present. He’s such a sweet, thoughtful friend. We met up around 5:30pm at the AMC Cinema on 42nd Street to see the new George Clooney film called “Good Night, And Good Luck”. [I raved about this film in an earlier Duchess Blog post.] The four of us really enjoyed the film and one could tell the audience did too. [A few of the films previewed looked interesting, especially a remake of “Pride & Prejudice.] Afterwards, we discussed the Clooney film at length, plus other related topics, over a light dinner at a charming Thai restaurant on 8th Avenue. Paul again treated me, as my birthday was coming up on the 17th. Overall it was an enjoyable evening. Thank you Paul!

GREAT REVIEW & COMMENTARY ON THE FILM "Good Night, And Good Luck" BY FELLOW BLOGGER anonyMoses [aka David Beckwith]
(Duchess Note - Thanks to Jude at Iddybud in posting this tidbit. And also to David in writing a fantastic review. You all are so awesome! Click on the link below. . . .]
There are moving stories about the vigils from all across the country. San Diego, Atlanta, Houston, Los Angeles, Denver, New York City, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Minneapolis-St. Paul and other big cities had large vigils. But there were vigils in small towns like Boothbay Harbor, ME and Pocatello, ID too. This morning there was some important media coverage—showing that in every community Americans support their troops but want them to come home soon. The headline in the Seattle Post Intelligencer was "Many candles are lit for fallen soldiers." The Daily Record (Morristown, NJ) headlined their story, "2,001 are in their prayers on Morristown Green." Dozens of local TV news shows—the most watched news programs in America—reported on the vigils. Better than the news reporting, though, were the reports we received first-hand, streaming into our e-mail account over night. Here are some of the best comments:

"Our Congressman stopped by to show his support, which was appreciated by many there. I am a military-family member—although no one active-duty any more (as of a few months ago) and I want people to know what's really going on over there—a sentiment shared by many." Kristine, Arlington, VA

"I believe that all of the vigils made a difference because it gave each of us an opportunity in our local communities to stand up and be counted as being vehemently against the war, honoring the humongous losses and memories of all our military people who lost their lives as well as acknowledging the pain and suffering of all of our injured and wounded; and finally to acknowledge the incalculable losses suffered by the Iraqi people." Jack, New York City, NY

"I liked being there to honor the men and women who have died and also to send the message that we have to get out of Iraq." Janet, Mission Viejo, CA

"My best moment was the veteran who told me he had lost friends in Iraq giving me a hug before he went home. The camaraderie was really uplifting." Hope, Houston, TX

"The best moment was watching the children who came; seeing their engagement and seriousness." Melinda, Hillsdale, NY

"We had two veterans; one Korean war and one 24 year old Iraq wounded veteran who has not been home that long. They both thanked us for being there." Barbara, Bennington, VT

You can see pictures from the vigils, read reports, and look at a map of all the vigil locations at:

MESSAGE FROM DOT MAVER AT PEACE ALLIANCE Regarding The Recent London Dept of Peace Summit
We return from the first International People's Summit for Departments of Peace, held October 18 and 19 in London, with great hope and increased energy for the work we have undertaken to create an infrastructure for peace as we call for departments of peace in governments throughout the world and continue our work here in the United States campaigning for a US Department of Peace. Forty people from twelve countries attended the London Summit. Countries represented included Australia, Canada, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, the Netherlands, Palestine, Romania, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Summit attendees also participated in a two-day training in the latest methodologies and developments in the field of peace building and conflict transformation. There are many of us calling for dialogue to determine ways to resolve conflicts with peaceful means. In July the United Nations hosted the largest ever gathering of Civil Society where a Global Action Agenda for the Prevention of Violent Conflict was presented to the Secretary-General. The global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict is calling on governments to work with civil society in building a safer, more peaceful world.

Both the Summit and the training that preceded it were facilitated by Kai Frithjof Brand-Jacobsen, founder and director of the Peace Action, Training and Research Institute of Romania (PATRIR) and co-director of Transcend.

On the final day of the London Summit, the participants launched an on-going partnership for global action, called the People's Initiative for Departments of Peace, and planned for the second People's Summit to be held June 2006 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, preceding the first World Peace Forum. The Summit concluded with a public meeting in the Grand Committee Room in the Houses of Parliament, where a Declaration (reproduced below) was presented to John McDonnell MP (member of parliament & in front row of photo with the summit group) who, inspired by Rep. Dennis Kucinich, has introduced legislation in the UK for a Ministry for Peace.

Please forward this message on to your networks, national and international, as there are now many Department of Peace working groups forming in countries around the world. We will keep you posted on progress as this initiative unfolds.

London, 19 October 2005

Today, we announce the launch of an international initiative for the creation of Departments of Peace in governments throughout the world. Violence of all kinds is increasing. There is an urgent need to find responsible solutions, expanding on past and present peace-building successes. This international initiative will both provide resources and support for existing national Department of Peace campaigns, and assist new ones as they appear in other countries. While the exact role of the department will differ in each country, its basic functions will be the same:

* To foster a culture of peace;
* To research, articulate and help bring about non-violent solutions to conflicts at all levels; and
* To provide resources for training in peace-building and conflict transformation to people everywhere.

We, the undersigned, joyfully vow to support and encourage each other, to share information, to enrich each other's experience, to listen to one another and to celebrate our commonalities and differences in our journey together towards a culture of peace.

§ Department of Peace, Australia
§ Working Group for a Federal Department of Peace, Canada
§ Ministry for Peace, United Kingdom
§ The Peace Alliance, Campaigning for a US Department of Peace, United States of America
§ Delegation from Israel
§ Binnie D'egli Innocenti, WWGHM, Italy
§ Federation of Damanhur, Italy
§ Global Peace Campaign, Working for a Ministry of Peace in Japan
§ Ank Mesritz, House of Peace, Netherlands
§ Paul van Tongeren, European Centre for Conflict Prevention, Netherlands
§ Zoughbi Zoughbi, WI'AM, Palestinian Conflict Resolution Centre, Palestine
§ Romanian Department of Peace Initiative
§ Jo Berry, Building Bridges for Peace, United Kingdom
§ Rolf C Carriere
§ Simonetta Costanzo Pittaluga

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Freedom is fragile and must be protected. To sacrifice it, even as a temporary measure, is to betray it. Germaine Greer

Message from Senator Ted Kennedy Regarding - Let's Stop George Bush and his Extreme Agenda
The reckless abuses of power undertaken by George Bush and his right-wing allies are a clear and present danger to the nation and must be stopped. The arrogance and incompetence of the Administration have made our country weaker, undermined our reputation in the world, made the war on terrorism harder to win, and divided our country like few other times in our history. Now, more than ever, I am convinced that the only way to stop George Bush and his radical agenda is to elect a Democratic Senate in 2006. This is the next important election we must win. I know that committed activists like you are an essential part of our strategy for victory. That's why I am asking you today to join the fight with the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the only national party committee committed to electing a Democratic Senate.

Every day I see fresh evidence of the Bush Administration's misguided leadership, deviousness, and incompetence:

* George Bush led us into war under false pretenses. Now, our courageous men and women in uniform continue to pay the ultimate price for his "shoot first" foreign policy.
* The Administration refuses to come clean on Iraq. Their claims of progress bear no relation to reality and are a disservice to our troops and our country.
* They're packing the federal courts with right-wing judges. And now they're refusing to supply key background information on their most important nominees.
* Tragically, their response to the massive human disaster caused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita has been incredibly inept. It only serves to underscore the extreme poverty that grips our inner cities and our rural heartland.

Enough already!

The only way to stop these flagrant abuses of power is to elect a Democratic Senate in 2006 that can put the brakes on the Bush agenda. A shift of a few Senate seats to the Democratic Party can make all the difference. Only by electing more Democrats to the Senate can we begin to undo the disastrous consequences of the past four years of Republican failure. The best way you can help is to become involved as soon as possible with the DSCC and its campaign to win back the Senate. The DSCC is the only national party organization solely committed to electing a Democratic Senate in 2006. The organization is recruiting Democratic activists across the country to ensure we have the resources we need to win. Will you be part of that campaign?

The DSCC has a special role in every Senate election across the country. It is the national party organization that coordinates directly with each and every Democratic Senate campaign. It makes sure that all our candidates have the money and resources they need to win. It is the only organization with the national vision to know where our party's resources will do the most good. I am committed to building a strong DSCC, because it could be the difference that puts us over the top in key states like Pennsylvania, where far right Republican Senator Rick Santorum is running for re-election. The DSCC needs your help to defeat Katherine Harris, the notorious Florida Secretary of State who gave George Bush the presidency in 2000. We will all need to work together to ensure the reelection of Democratic stalwarts like Sen. Bob Byrd in West Virginia. Committed activists like you will be crucial to the DSCC's success. That's why I need you to join their campaign today.

The DSCC's job is at the center of the action for the coming campaigns in the 34 states that will be holding elections for the Senate in 2006. Its mission is critical, because electing more Democrats is the only way we can clean up the mess George Bush has made in Iraq, stop his plan to pack our federal courts with extremist ideologues, and hold him accountable for all of the massive policy blunders that plague our nation today. If we're going to put our country back on track, we clearly need to win back the Senate in 2006. The DSCC is the official arm of the Democratic Party dedicated to doing just that. If you're troubled by George Bush and his right-wing agenda, there is no better organization for you to support. In the coming weeks and months, the DSCC will continue to ask you to help us elect a Democratic Senate and to put a stop to the right wing juggernaut. Now, more then ever, I urge you to get involved and be there with us when our party needs you. The stakes are too high for any of us to do less.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Some people think it's a miracle to walk on water. I think it is a miracle to walk on the earth in peace. Thich Nhat Hahn


Josh Kalven, Media Matters for America
As the possibility of high-level indictments increases, the misinformation battle intensifies. Get the truth behind the major falsehoods.

Cindy Sheehan, AlterNet
How can those who want the occupation of Iraq to end support Hillary Clinton's higher political aspirations? They can't.

Daniel B. Wood, Christian Science Monitor
Congress may waste a golden opportunity to address the nation's long-term poverty problems by cutting back social>services to pay for the reconstruction effort.

Robert Dreyfuss,
After all the lies and costs of Iraq, is it possible that America will let Bush get away with shattering another Middle East state?

Bill McKibben, Prairie Writers Circle
It's time for the denial to end, but Washington is governed by a bipartisan consensus that somehow the laws of physics and chemistry don't apply to us.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


[Photo on Left - Carol & Liz ... Photo on Right - Carol, Evie, Kevin & Julia]

[Photo at Left - Evie & Joe ... Photo at Right - Duchess with Evie, Kevin & Julia]

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Every day we do things, we are things that have to do with peace. If we are aware of our life, our way of looking at things, we will know how to make peace right in the moment we are alive. Thich Nhat Hahn

The Iraq war benefits only those who stand to make financial gain from weapons production and imperialism in the Middle East. Military families and ordinary citizens suffer the most as the casualties and the deficit grow. PANY and PDA have developed a workable five point plan that the government should use to get us out.

Five Points for Successfully Exiting Iraq

1] Leave no permanent bases in Iraq
2] Plan to withdraw in troops in months, not years
3] Peacefully reconstruct Iraq with the supervision of the United Nations
4] Appoint a diplomat to facilitate an independent peace process in Iraq
5] Diplomatically assist in a cooperative political settlement in the new Iraqi government

MESSAGE FROM BUGSNEWS -- Pearl Jam Gets OK For Sao Paulo Show

After weeks of doubts, Sao Paulo's mayor has agreed to allow Pearl Jam to perform in the Brazilian city's biggest stadium. More than 40,000 fans are expected for the Dec. 2-3 shows at the Pacaembu stadium, which will mark the Seattle-based band's debut in Brazil. Mayor Jose Serra had suspended shows in Pacaembu after complaints from residents of the posh neighborhood around the stadium about noise and mess. For the concerts to go ahead, Serra set a list of demands. The show must finish at 9:45 p.m. sharp and rehearsals must take place during the day for just 30 minutes. A special police operation will be mounted to maintain security and the organizers must clean up the stadium and the surrounding streets. Pearl Jam's Latin American tour starts on Nov. 22 in Santiago, Chile. The shows will be the first open-floor performances the group has undertaken since nine fans were killed in a crowd surge during its June 2000 set at Denmark's Roskilde Festival. Pearl Jam is presently finishing up work on its eighth studio album, which is expected early next year via J Records.

Gordon Livingston, The Baltimore Sun
In his recent rehearsed television conversation with 11 soldiers in Iraq, he said, "So long as I'm the president, we're never going to back down, we're never going ... to accept anything less than total victory." Twice he told them that the American people were behind them: "You've got tremendous support here at home." In an Associated Press poll taken in September, over half the public now says the Iraq war was a mistake. What's happening? Is the man so insulated from the reality of events that he has come to believe his administration's propaganda? Or is there a more ominous and pervasive problem that calls into question something other than political ideology, that is influenced by a world view marked by an inability to reason logically and learn from experience?

Monday, October 24, 2005

Anthony Lane, The New Yorker
In the role of Glory, McDormand could have turned mushy when she grows sick, but she ups her rueful humor instead; as for Sean Bean, playing her husband, there is no mistaking the relief with which, after a résumé full of hams and hunks, he embraces this unexplosive role. The scene in his downstairs workshop, where he delivers a gentle lecture on hatred to Josey’s son, is the best thing Bean has ever done.

Linda Zoblotsky, Peace Journalism
U.S. tax-payers will foot the bill for U.S. security corporations and foreign mercenaries to protect the oil and military bases that we have built in Iraq. U.S. tax-payers will pay for the no-bid contracts as the U.S. threatens and continues to bull-doze through the Middle East. When we gather at the polls in 2006 mid-term elections, let us hope our votes count for something.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

House Roll Call - Gun Lawsuit Shield Bill
Thursday, October 20, 2005
by Associated Press,1282,-5358435,00.html

The 283-144 roll call Thursday by which the House passed a bill protecting the firearms industry from massive crime-victim lawsuits. A "yes" vote is a vote to pass the bill.

Voting yes were 223 Republicans, 59 Democrats and one independent.

Voting no were 140 Democrats, four Republicans and no independents.

X denotes those not voting. There is one vacancy in the 435-member House. Congressman Kucinich voted NO. [Duchess Note - Bravo DJK and to all those that voted NO!]

Message from NYC Chapter Dept of Peace

EVERY DAY FOR PEACE - A Call for Peace
Here's a simple and powerful way to build a groundswell in Congress to create the Department of Peace! We here in NY State have 29 Congressional Districts. This number lends itself to utilizing the monthly calendar in a useful way. It goes like this:

Those living in Congressional District 1 will call their House Representative and Senators Schumer and Clinton on the 1st of the month and ask them to co-sponsor and support the Department of Peace Bill. On the 2nd day of the month C.D. #2 constituents call Congress requesting the same. On the 3rd day, C.D. #3 calls. And so it goes throughout the month. When the first of the month comes around again, C.D. #1 begins the cycle all over again.

Exceptions ... if your day falls on a Saturday, you call on Friday. If your day falls on Sunday, you call on Monday. On the 30th and 31st of the month, EVERYBODY CALLS!! Think of it as a little Peace Angel calling every month to remind our Members of Congress that we, the voting public, vigorously support the creation of the Department of Peace! Think of the numbers:

Our Senators are hearing from at least one person EVERY DAY about theDepartment of Peace. (And at the end of the month they're flooded with calls). Our Members in the House are hearing from us three times a month. Again, with a flood of calls at the end of the month! After several months, they are going to realize that something's afoot here! After several months of this, the scene will be set for a face to face meeting in theDistrict office to continue the dialogue. Go to:

Bill numbers: House bill is HR3760. Senate bill is S1756. Refer to these numbers when you make your calls. Isn't peace worth a few calls a month? If you think it is, then don't delay, start TODAY! Rock the house with peace, love & justice!

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... People who seem to have no power, whether working people, people of color, or women, once they organize and protest and create movements, have a voice no government can suppress. Howard Zinn

Message from NOT IN OUR NAME Activist Group ... November 2 - Unite to Drive Out the Bush Regime!
We say with a collective voice that this President, this administration, this war and their political agenda for the world are NOT IN OUR NAME! Furthermore, any president or any administration with such an agenda for endless war and repression is NOT IN OUR NAME! It is time for them to go. Not in Our Name joins with thousands across the country on November 2nd to Drive Out the Bush Regime ...

We believe that as people living in the United States it is our responsibility to resist the injustices done by our government in our names. Lets unite to drive out the Bush Regime! Initiated by the World Can't Wait to Drive Out the Bush Regime group, check their web site for a calendar of actions:

For more information:

Saturday, October 22, 2005

2006 will be an important year for our country. PDA would like your input as we plan
our direction for next year. To help stimulate discussion, we have asked members
of our Advisory Board to write their recommendations and vision of the future role
of PDA. But we need your feedback. It is imperative to PDA's success that your
grassroots input is combined with the thoughts of these progressive leaders to
determine the direction PDA will take in the crucial year ahead.
Our first letter about PDA's future is written by Tom Hayden. Tom has been with PDA
since our launch as an organization. He told us then that the 2004 election for
President must be about the war. His words fell on deaf ears with Democratic Nominee
John Kerry, but not to the hundreds of thousands of activists who mobilized around
this issue in 2004. In 2006, we must keep this issue at the forefront. Tom has
recently written a letter to the senior staff and advisors of PDA discussing what
he feels should be the future strategic plan regarding our electoral work as truly
progressive Democrats. With Bush and his cronies facing criminal and potential
impeachment charges, the movement to elect Democrats who are a voice of peace in
Congress is critical. Please read the following piece by Tom Hayden regarding his
advisement for PDA in 2006, and then send us your feedback (see instructions at
the top and bottom of the article on our web site):
This is a critical time for dialogue, but more importantly, a critical time to
continue our actions both inside and outside of the Democratic Party. We look
forward to hearing from you! If you can help support this work financially,
please make a donation and consider becoming a sustaining member at:

Friday, October 21, 2005

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... A peaceful world, inhabited by people throughout the world who have learned how to keep peace better than how to make war, who want peace, who know its benefits, and who insist that their governments let them have it -- that would be the best world and the greatest inheritance we could give to our children and our grandchildren and generations that will follow them. Without it, nothing else is reliable. With it, everything else is possible. Senator Mark Dayton (2005)

CBC Arts

[Duchess Note -- Instead of cutting funds for important programs like Medicaid, the arts and PBS. What those neo-con death cult thugs should be doing is TAXING those disgustingly wealthy pigs in this country. And I mean TAX them! NO MORE tax breaks. They can afford to pay taxes. Sell that yacht you worthless, greedy bugger! Then we'd have sufficient funds to rebuild New Orleans, give needy children healthcare AND NOT short change Americans of good programs. Is it any wonder why I LOATH these destroyers of ALL that is good.]

Lawrence Toppman, The Charlotte Observer Movie Critic

Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinal Movie Critic,0,6027404.story?coll=orl=calmvoviestop

[Above Photo - Sean Bean at Toronto Film Festival in September 2005 to promote "North Country"]

Recently, we learned that in 1989, Harriet Miers appeared to signify her "support for a constitutional amendment banning abortions" except when necessary to save the life of the woman. This new revelation came in the form of an unsigned questionnaire for the Texans United for Life. Such an amendment would outlaw abortion even in the case of rape, incest, or when a woman's health is in jeopardy. Seems like an open and shut case. Right? Except that the White House has created a circus of evasion and inconsistency in the Miers nomination.

Remember on Monday, there was also confusion over whether she believes in a right to privacy. The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Arlen Specter, says that in a meeting with Miers, she told him she supports the Supreme Court decisions Griswold and Eisenstadt, which guarantee a constitutional right to birth control. But later, according to news reports, she called Specter to say she had not indicated such a position. Meanwhile a Wall Street Journal article reported that the very day Bush nominated Miers, two Texas judges who know her well held a conference call with conservative groups assuring the anti-choice hardliners that she would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Maybe politicians are willing to gamble with women's lives, but we're not -and we know you're not either. That's why we're asking you to support our Choose Justice work before it's too late. We need to be strong enough financially to advocate against any nominee opposed to Roe v. Wade. So please donate today:

Help us demand direct answers from Miers by donating to our Choose Justice campaign efforts. It is critical that we find out where Miers stands before she is confirmed as the possible swing vote for Roe v. Wade:

Harriet Miers' contradictory explanations continue to generate confusion and heighten the need for pro-choice Americans to know if she will protect women's reproductive health. Miers must give direct answers to critical questions related to privacy and freedom as she pursues a lifetime appointment on the Supreme Court. We need your help to keep Miers and the White House honest. Please give today, so we can have the resources to see this through:

Since President Bush states that he's a "pro-life president," that she "shares" his judicial philosophy" and that he believes "she doesn't change her mind over the course of time," America's pro-choice majority deserves to know which Harriet Miers will show up if confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court. Together, we can demand the Senate get the information it has a right to know: the same information anti-choice activist James Dobson claimed he has the special privilege of knowing. He stated, "When you know some of the things I know -- that I probably shouldn't know -- they take me in this direction. I believe Harriet Miers will be a good justice." Americans deserve to know the facts. Please help us fight for the Supreme Court with a donation to our Choose Justice campaign today:

Thursday, October 20, 2005

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves. Bertrand de Jouvenel

Sunday, October 2nd, was the big day of the 21st Annual Renaissance Faire. It was another gorgeous, perfect weather day. [Note: Correction on previous "personal news". I had mentioned that Eileen was Programme Director. So sorry ... my bad. Rechecking the program for the faire, it lists Eileen as "Performance Director". My apologies to Eileen and the organization.] I arrived at Fort Tyron Park at 10am and headed to the staff/volunteer/
participant area, which was next to the Tournament Field & Apple Orchard. Eileen was already there and getting all of us to sign in, collects badges, agenda, etc. Eileen looked abit tired and mentioned Jay, Seth and she were up until 4am working on posters, agendas, etc. Poor darlings. I learned that I would be working with Adam, Becca, Sam and Bonnie as "stage managers". Bonnie kindly lent me one of her mustard color cloth medieval hats, so as to keep the sun off my sensitive noggin. I'm not a fan of that color, but didn't object, as I very much needed to keep the warm sun off my head. Plus I had on lots of sunscreen, so I wouldn't go thru what happened the day before. Clad in my peasant blouse, jeans, sandals, fanny pack and hat I was ready to help out and enjoy the faire. Occasionally observed the performers go into provided tents in their 21st century street clothing and come out wearing terrific Renaissance costumes.

[As you can see in photo at left]

Finally, it was time to head up to the front gate and help organize the performers for the opening procession. This is the official start of the faire. It took some time to organize ... finally Eileen snapped her bullwhip to announce the start. Bonnie and I made sure pedestrians stood back to allow the procession on its way and it finished up at the Tournament Field.

[As you can see in second photo] Back at the "staging/refreshment area" for us folk, I stood guard at the entrance to make sure that no pedestrians entered. Also partook of some free food. Ahhh ... sustenance!

Took care of this for an hour before I was relieved of that duty. Behind the Apple Orchard and Cloisters is were the Jousters are sequestered with their steeds. Eileen, Melissa and I went to check on them before they performed in the "Joust of Pleasure" at 2pm. Again Bonnie, Becca and I had to keep the pedestrians back to allow the jousters onto the field. The event was fun to watch, but Lord Morgan’s steed was being very flighty that day. Sir Thomas Banger, on the other hand, was experiencing no troubles with his Belgium steed. At one point I had to sit behind bails of hay to shade myself from the intense sun. Mon dieu! After this particular event was done ... Bonnie, Becca and I decided to check out the street vendors along Centercheap Market. Plus purchase some PULSE to fortify our thirsty bodies from too much sunshine. Lots of really neat stuff/goodies and plan on doing some shopping at end of faire. Once refreshed and sitting back at the "staging area" watched the "Living Chess Game" being played at the Tournament Field and talked about past Ren Faires held out at Tuxedo, NY. We all had a good laugh over some of the antics and folk we both mutually knew back in the day.

Shortly before 4:30pm we walked up to the Pageant Wagon, behind the Cloisters, to round up the performers for the Grand Procession that leads into the Grand Tournament. This is hosted by the royal court. What a mess in trying to get that organized and locating Eileen. Finally, at about 5pm, the procession made its way down to the field. [Bonnie and I clearing a path to the field. Pedestrians can be so dense at times.] Yep, we were late, as the Royal Court started without the procession. Most annoying! Before letting the jousters into the field for the Grand Joust, my friend Linda showed up with some acquaintances. It was great seeing her, but sadly we could only chat for abit, as I was trying to keep the pedestrians away from the horses.

[Photo of Sir Thomas Banger with Melissa the Wench at left.] The joust was a rousing success and I believe LordMorgan won, though I was cheering on Sir Thomas. Afterwards I tried to locate Linda and Eileen, but no luck with either, so I returned my "staff" badge and went shopping. Didn't purchase much, but greatly enjoyed viewing all the lovely goodies. Back at the "staging area" I ran into Melissa the Wench. We chatted and decided to walk out together, as our volunteer work was done for the day. Fun, interesting day and will definitely help out Eileen next year.

Tuesday, October 4th, I attended a music recital at the Frederick Loewe's Theatre down near Washington Square in Manhattan. Was invited by fellow NYC Kucitizen Peter Calandra and his wife Nadine. One of Peter's compositions was being performed that evening by Kathleen Nester on the flute. Which was most enjoyable, especially the 2nd & 3rd movements. [Other musicians that evening were playing piano, viola, and harp.] The event was hosted and performed by the NYC Steinhardt Music & Performing Arts Professions. I was especially impressed, as the rest of the audience was, by Ms Nester's expertise on the flute during the "Carmen-Fantasie" in the program. Also enjoyed a Debussy sonata performed by flute, harp and viola. It’s a joy to see and hear the harp and not have it drowned out by a large orchestra. After the program ended I was able to chat with Peter and Nadine. Overall a delightful evening of music.

Wednesday, October 5th, I attended the monthly "Democracy for America" meetup in Williamsburg at Royal Oak Pub. Not sure what’s up with folk and low attendance. Cause the meetup was attended only by me and Dan Jacoby [host]. Despite low attendance, I enjoyed some terrific and fascinating conversation with Dan. [A link to Dan's website is listed on the left called "Jacoby's Political Essays".] Topics on the agenda, that we touched upon, are ... mayoral debate, Freddy Ferrer monthly mixer, NY Civil Liberties Unions Bill of Rights Defense campaign [Intro 649 -] and DFNYC issues for endorsements. I also told Dan about NYC DoP campaign and provided him with links for more info.


7 PM EVERY SUNDAY Evening (Doors 6:30)
St. Mark's Church Parish House
10th Street & Second Avenue in Manhattan
Donation $5

Sunday Oct 23 at 7 PM - FRANK MORALES
A talk on the deep politics of the New Orleans disaster, analyzing parallels and links to 9/11. Below the "massive incompetence" of the federal government lies a sinister consolidation of the military/police state in America, building on a decades-old history of preparations for quelling civil disturbance using doctrines of "emergency preparedness" and "homeland security." Frank Morales has written on these issues for Covert Action Quarterly, Global Outlook and other publications. FILM – New Orleans/Katrina Media Review by John Albanese

Sunday Oct 30 at 7PM - JANETTE MACKINLEY
NEW YORK PREMIERE! Featuring hyperactivist Carol Brouillet, music by David Rovics, stand-up comedy by the hilarious Will Durst and former Washington Post writer Bill Santiago, and rap-poetry by Drew Dellinger. The 2004 gala was a benefit show for the "International Inquiry into 9-11, Phase One: San Francisco."

"A film for people with brains as well as funny bones." (60 mins)The events of September 11th literally smashed through artist Janette MacKinley's windows, across Liberty Street from the World Trade Center. She authored Fortunate, a powerful memoir of that experience, and became active in the 9/11 truth movement. After several years in the Bay Area, she will be speaking on the activities and personalities of our sister group, the Northern California 9/11 Truth Alliance (

Sunday Nov 6 at 7PM - NICHOLAS LEVIS
Film - "Exposed: The Carlyle Group"The 48-minute Dutch documentary "Exposed" examines the Carlyle Group: a fund that united the financial interests of the Bush family and the Bin Ladin family in the shared business of war. Author Nicholas Levis, New York correspondent for, presents a slide show on the history of the men responsible for Iran-Contra, the origins of al-Qaeda, CIA involvement in the drug business, the S&L plunder, longstanding plans for invading the Middle East, the development of an American police state and the “Project for a New American Century” - the same men who run the present Bush regime.

Sunday Nov 13 at 7PM - SHAWN PICKERING
Daniel Hopsicker's 60-minute documentary examines "The Secret Birth of the Federal Reserve" - how America was taken over by banking interests. Researcher Shawn Pickering looks at the system of fractional-reserve banking with interest-bearing debt that ultimately necessitates a destructive, permanent-growth economy.

Sunday Nov 20 at 7PM - SANDER HICKS
Publisher of the critical Bush biography Fortunate Son in 2001, Hicks casts a hard look at the official story of the 9/11 attacks in his new book The Big Wedding, a whirlwind tour of criminal informants and suppressed intelligence insiders. "Hicks is out to do nothing less than expose the planet's most insidious nexus: the Jihadists, bankers, mercenaries, drug dealers, and so-called leaders who are currently pantomiming their way through a charade they've dubbed the 'war on terror.' Imagine Henry Rollins meets the young Bob Woodward - a clean-cut, hard-as-nails punk with the reporting chops to take on an empire." - Anthony Lappe ( WITH FILM CLIPS from Sander's work at INN World Report.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


George Lakoff, John Halpin, The American Prospect
With millions of Americans displaced, injured or dead in the disaster's aftermath, America watched modern conservative ideology -- less government, lower taxes, a strong defense -- crumble.

Commentary by Cindy Sheehan
Secondly, I hate to spoil CNN's euphoria over the vote on the referendum, but 5 soldiers and a Marine were killed by IEDs on Saturday. I wonder if the families of those tragically slain on the "peaceful" day are celebrating the turnout on Saturday? I know I don't think that it was worth Casey dying so the people of Iraq can vote in a theocracy.

Joshua Holland, AlterNet
Roe v. Wade isn't going anywhere if Harriet Miers becomes justice, but bickering about it makes for a distraction for the corporate interests that will flourish in a Roberts-Miers Court.

Commentary by Ivan Eland

Madeline Drexler, TomPaine.comAmerica's corporate culture and Bush cronyism is putting the nation at risk in the event of a flu pandemic -- which is looking ever more likely to happen.

Neal Peirce, Seattle Times

Nina Siegal, The Progressive
The man who conquered evil in Middle Earth as Aragorn speaks about his new movie, political activism and not being anti-Bush.

Keynote speech by Bill Moyers to the Society of Environmental Journalists Convention in Austin, TX on October 1st

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Communism is the corruption of a dream of justice. Adlai Stevenson

DISASTER RELIEF OR BUDGET DISASTER? Call Congress TODAY and Demand a Fair and Sensible Budget [Message from TrueMajority]

Hundreds of thousands of Katrina survivors are homeless, jobless, without health coverage--added to the millions already poor in America. The right wing's response? Cut Medicaid, food stamps, housing and other vital services still deeper.

Hard to believe--but this Thursday the House of Representatives is expected to vote on increasing the cuts in vital programs (such as Medicaid, food stamps, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), child welfare services, SSI, unemployment insurance, child support, etc.) from $35 billion to $50 billion. Forces in the Senate would also like to cut more. In addition, House right-wing members are calling for across-the-board cuts of all the other programs--including housing, education, public health, nutrition, child care, etc. A coalition of groups is mobilizing a massive outcry against this inexcusable legislation--a national call-in is scheduled until Thursday's vote--and TrueMajority members can play a crucial role in this action. Using the guidelines below, call your congressperson toll-free today and tell him or her to oppose the planned tax cuts and the cuts in spending on essential social services.

Right-wing operative Grover Norquist once infamously said he wanted to see our government shrink until he could "drown it in a bathtub." Hurricane Katrina, though, showed us the real consequences of starving our infrastructure. It's past time to make our country strong again with functional emergency services, first-rate universities, healthy communities and all the other things that come from working together in an effective government. With $35 billion dollars planned to be cut from Medicaid and other important programs and $70 billion in planned tax cuts for the rich, this legislation is too important for us to remain silent. Join activists around the country in this opportunity to tell Congress that a strong domestic infrastructure is essential for an effective government--one that can meet the needs of ALL of its citizens.

Message From Working Families Network - Call Congress for a New Direction

President George W. Bush and his congressional allies want to cut $35 billion to $50 billion from vital survival programs like Medicaid, food stamps, education and housing. They claim the cuts are needed to rebuild the hurricane-damaged Gulf Coast. But in reality, they're trying to give another $70 billion in new tax breaks to the rich. THEY'VE GOT THEIR PRIORITIES WRONG. Let's set them straight.

All this week, tens of thousands of working family activists are calling their members of Congress, urging them to reject these wrong-headed budget priorities and set a new direction for America. Please use the following toll-free number to call your members of Congress today ... 1-800-393-1082

Tell them:

1] America needs a new direction--one that puts people first and invests in good jobs, health care for all, schools, hospitals and highways.

2] DON'T cut $35 billion to $50 billion from vital public programs that families need, such as Medicaid and food stamps.

3] STOP giving tax breaks to the rich instead of investing in working families.

It is an outrage that the Bush administration and its allies are using the tragedy of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to cut survival programs for working families--especially devastated Gulf Coast working families--while giving more huge tax breaks to the rich. We expect our elected leaders to put working families first--before their corporate backers and the ultra-rich. But too many of them are willing to sell "the land of the free and the home of the brave" to the highest bidder. Congress is expected to vote on the federal budget before the end of this month. That means we have very little time to make sure they reject special interest priorities and fund working family priorities. Call your members of Congress right now, toll-free, at ... 1-800-393-1082

Congress must hear from tens of thousands of us if we're going to make a difference. Right now, union and community groups, faith communities and civil rights organizations are reaching out to their members, urging them to call Congress today and tomorrow. Please be part of this nationwide outreach--as soon as you have called your members of Congress, please forward this message to your friends, family and co-workers and ask them to call Congress, too. Working families can't live with the perverse priorities the Bush administration and its allies in Congress are showing us now. We've got to get America back on track, in a new direction with the right priorities for working families. Please do all you can to make sure your members of Congress reject the $35 billion to $50 billion in budget cuts to vital programs and the $70 billion in unnecessary new tax cuts for the rich. Thank you for calling Congress on behalf of working families.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

From the evening of September 22nd through midday of 26th I was down in Cape May [NJ] on a mini vacation. As I mentioned in previous "personal news" ... my co-worker lent me her small condo on New Jersey Avenue. [View from condo looking at Atlantic Ocean - Photo Below] This area of Cape May is near the northern end of Beach Avenue, where it’s mostly large residential homes.

Many of these pricey summer/weekend homes were newly built within the last 3 to 5 years. Later learned that the small plots of land these big houses are built on is worth more than the actual house. Real estate market has gone crazy in this area, as well as the premium area between the lighthouse and Sunset Beach. I noticed several subtle changes in the whole Cape May area since I was down two years ago. [Overall, the seaside resort area is still pleasing to the eye.] Plus, learned more during my visit to Twin Gables Inn to see Harry & Regina. It was great seeing them and their lovable Golden Retriever Brandy. Sat on that delightful veranda chatting with them, their weekend guests and partaking of afternoon tea. Just like ole times. They mentioned the Inn is up for sale and as soon as it’s sold their retiring to Florida. [Sigh, no more relaxing evenings sitting on that charming veranda or partaking of Regina's delicious breakfasts.]

My visits to Cape May over the years were made more special from staying at Twin Gables. An era is passing. During the weekend, on two occasions, I stopped by Cape May Bike Rental to chat with my buddy Joe. He also kindly repaired Maureen's bike for me. While visiting him I also met a few of his funky friends and we enjoyed some fun conversation. The weather held up nicely over the four days and only on Saturday did it get cool/overcast. I did alot of riding around on the bike, some shopping along Washington Street Mall, utilize Internet/computer at local library, hangout at Sunset Beach, visit the lighthouse and also sit on the beach reading Thomas Paine's "Common Sense". [Photo below was taken near Cape May lighthouse in a residents front yard. Its a charming wood sculpture.]

Many of my meals were taken at the condo, as it’s cheaper that way [thx Wawa]. Though I did have one tasty lunch at Depot Cafe. Also watched abit of cable TV at the condo. Caught up on viewing the Food Network, Weather Channel & History Channel. Some of the movies I watched were "Arsenic & Old Lace", "In & Out" and "My Big Fat Greek Wedding". Overall it was a nice, relaxing weekend and felt sad when I left Monday around 11:30am.

On Wednesday, September 28th, I participated on the monthly National DoP conference call at 9pm. Of which Dot Maver hosted ... she mentioned that there are now 281 Dept of Peace District Team Leaders in 48 states of the US. [The Duchess is one of those DTLs.] This was exciting news! There was mention of a "Peoples Summit" taking place in London during October. Plus a DoP event down in Puerto Rico in December, of which Dot Maver and Marianne Williamson will be attending. Lynn McMullen was also on the call and mentioned a foundation that wanted to contribute to our campaign. Hurray! Many folk, on the call, related their experiences regarding the recent 3rd Annual Peace Conference. All the stories were great and inspiring. Also learned that next summer there will be "regional peace conferences" and that we DTLs should connect with our State Coordinator. Great conference call and several of us New Yorkers were on it.

The following evening, September 29th, was the monthly NYC Chapter DoP board meeting. This time it was held at Kevin's office on 34th Street. Kevin works at ESPN and the layout of office space is really cool. We ordered some takeout food [which arrived late] and then commenced with the meeting. Those in attendance were Ellen, Dawn, Liz, Charlene, Joe, Kevin, Carol and Maria. A majority of the meeting centered on "Congressional Coordination" committee work and reports. We also covered a good portion of old and new business while noshing on food. Finally, we wrapped things up around 9:30pm and head off towards our respective subways. [As an aside, I mentioned to all at the meeting that I'm trying to find a round B&W peace sign beads, so as to make earrings to sell at events. If any were spotted to let me know.]

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under. H.L. Mencken

On Saturday, October 1st, I headed up to northern Manhattan and Fort Tryon Park off the A line. I'd never been there before and was impressed with the lovely park grounds, surrounding residential area and the Cloisters. Showed up to help out my friend Eileen [Programme Director] for four hours. [Poor thing, under alot of stress prepping for this event and dealing with Bronchitis. Plus, I hadn't seen her since we went to that wedding in VA.] Eileen, Adam, Jay and I walked around Fort Tryon Park, plus surrounding area, setting up and posting flyers for the 21st annual Renaissance Faire. It was such a wonderful, perfect Fall day. Not a cloud in the sky and warm sunshine. [I even got abit sun burnt.] We also had to work on Faire posters back at NY Renaissance Faire office. At 4pm I had to leave, as I had to pick something up at my office before joining my friend Cielito down in Park Slope for dinner. We met up around 5:45pm and caught up on "news" during nice dinner at a Chinese place on Union Street. Mostly telling her about the Peace Conference in DC. [All thru dinner my neck was bothering me & I realized I may have gotten too much sun.] From there we strolled up Union Street to this great, funky atmospheric place called "The Tea Lounge". [Kind of reminded me of the coffee house scene in "Friends" TV show.] I probably shouldn't have had a slice, but this amazing looking chocolate cake seemed to be calling my name. Cielito had tea and also shared the cake with me. By 9pm I was feeling more and more ill. Asked Cielito if she'd drive me home, as I didn't think I'd make it on the subway. After getting some gas for her car, she dropped me off at my apartment around 9:30pm and 10 minutes later I was very ill in the toilet. Went straight to bed, slept soundly and by next morning I felt absolutely fine. Go figure......

P.S. More "Personal News" coming soon.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Thursday, September 15th, the NYC Chapter DoP conducted a conference call to discuss and reflect on the recent Peace Conference held in Washington DC. Those in attendance on this call were ... Liz, Marni, Maria, Kevin, Charlene, Janet, Eileen, Dawn, Joe, Carol, Hector and Ellen. It was a terrific call and everyone had lots of positive, inspring stories to relate. I really enjoyed listening to accounts by our group who stayed in DC to lobby their congress people. Talk of the "peace cloth", DC historical sites & Kucinich dropping the "bill" on the 14th. Carol noted that NYC Chapter Dept of Peace celebrated its one-year anniversary on September 15th. WooHoo! Bravo! Keep the faith ... we can make a difference.

On Sunday, September 18th, I attended the annual Lincoln Center Art & Craft Show in Manhattan. Its always an inspiring treat to visit this free event. Engaged in conversation with some of the artisans and picked up a CD of Renaissance style music by Peter Blanchette. He plays this lovely, sweet sounding instrument called an archguitar. The weather was a warm, sunny day.

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism it's just the opposite. John Kenneth Galbraith

Wednesday, September 21st, I joined other NYC Chapter Dept of Peace members/volunteers in attending the "United Nations International Day of Peace" ceremonies at St Peters Catholic Church down near WTC. The 2 1/2 hour event was called "Courage to Forgive". Can you believe it, I actually got abit lost in trying to find this church?!? I ended up getting directions from the front desk at Millennium Hotel. Which is across the street from "ground zero". I've lived in NYC for 22 years and its abit embarressing when one gets lost. Sigh! Anyhow, those from our growing NYC Chapter who attended ... Joe, Ellen, Marie, Carol, Karen, Liz, Maria, Eileen, Janet and Marni. [These are all wonderfully caring folk & I'm honored to be part of this group.] Arriving at the church, I was greeted by Dot Maver at the door and it was lovely seeing her again. I would of enjoyed the evening more so, if I was feeling abit better. Darn cyst on my ovary! The program for the evening is as follows:

Welcome Address by Father Madigan
Master of Ceremonies is Reverend Lyndon Harris
Poem by Salahuden Shabazz
Justine Mordica talked about Youth Bear Hug Project
Reverend Lyndon Harris talk - "Forgiveness at Ground Zero"
Dr Fred Luskin talk - "Obstacles & Opportunities"
Music by Larry Meyer and his daughter Govinda
Marianne Williamson talk - "The Gift of Change"
Monica Willard talked about "UN International Day of Peace"
Deborah Moldow lead everyone through the UN Flag Ceremony
Reverend Charles Gibbes closed the evening with Prayers for Peace

Thursday, September 22nd, was such a busy productive day at the office. Mostly handling a few projects for a partner I support. Had to work through lunch to get most of it done. Mon dieu! Briefly, in the afternoon, attended a baby shower for one of my bosses [Debra] at E&Ys 23rd floor conference center. Her hubby John was invited to the event and it was nice to finally meet him. She did really well in receiving many nice baby gifts. At 4:30pm I left the office with my suitcase and briskly walked the one block to Port Authority to catch a bus to Atlantic City. [Before leaving work, I called Cape May taxi to reserve service at 10pm.] Got there just in time to catch the 4:45pm bus. Earlier in the week, one of my co-workers [Maureen] gave me a key to utilize her condo down in Cape May for the weekend. We had talked about this on several occasions. Normally I stay at a B&B, but due to shortage of funds, I couldn't afford that this year. I'm very thankful for Maureen's generousity and kindness.

The ride down to Atlantic City went smoothly and we arrived 10 minutes early at the depot. My first thought was "are we in the correct bus depot", cause the whole place looked soooo different from my 2003 visit. I learned from the Cape May bus driver 30 minutes later, after purchasing my roundtrip bus ticket, that the depot went through alot of changes in those two years. Many of those changes, he said, were not for the better. The ride down to Cape May, via Wildwood, was very crowded and since I was in the front seat, I engaged in chatty conversation with the driver. We arrived on time and the taxi service was waiting for me. Amen! The chap was so nice and helpful. Even took me to Wawa's Convenience Store, so that I could purchase some items for the kitchen. Arrived at the condo just before 10:30pm and not knowing what to expect. Maureen did say that some work was being done on her kitchen and I was thankful for the warning. After finding the light switches, I was greeted with seeing the stove unhooked and out in the middle of the room. Oh dear ... no time to pout ... even tho I was tired I got to work. Couldn't hook up the stove, but I pushed it back into place. Tidy up the kitchen and livingroom, which were kinda like one room. Checked out the bathroom and no mirror on the wall, but there were two mirrors in the large bedroom with big closets. Unpacked my things, put groceries in frig, located bath towels, adjusted the central air in the place, vacuumed abit and plugged in the telly. Finally got to bed around midnight ... welcome to Cape May.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Upcoming Event Sponsored By NY 9-11 Truth, WBAI & The Muslim-Christian-Jewish Alliance -- Theologian Speaks Out on 9/11


Saturday, Oct. 15th
Anthology Film Archives
32 Second Avenue, corner of 3rd Street
New York City
1 pm, doors open 12:30
Suggested Donation: $5

Is it possible that the official story of what happened on 9/11 is an implausible theory unsubstantiated by the facts? Since the government's theory has been proven flawed and their investigation is widely recognized as being misleading and inadequate (see, shouldn't we objectively analyze and question it? Shouldn't all who work for peace and progress be informed? Christian theologian and author David Ray Griffin will present compelling evidence that challenges much of what we have been told about the horrific attacks of that day. Dr. Griffin will include new research especially for the New York audience based on recently released oral histories of firefighters and medical workers at the World Trade Center, as well as video footage which clearly supports this research.

Why should you attend? Because Dr. Griffin's presentation comes in the wake of more issues in the news that continue to put the official account of 9/11 into question. In late August a surveillance program called Able Danger was revealed giving us information stating that four of the alleged hijackers were being tracked as early as 1999. A few weeks ago we saw the forced resignation of NY Fire Department Chaplain Intikab Habib for questioning the government's explanation of 9/11. This occurred even though a Zogby poll released on Aug. 30, 2004 indicated that half the citizens of New York don't believe the official story. In last week's news we learned that CIA Director Porter Goss refuses to investigation agents who were responsible for preventing the attacks but didn't, which is another blatant refusal of our government to hold anyone accountable. So far the only people to lose their jobs have been whistleblowers. Those in charge of security have received medals and promotions. What could be the reason? Therefore, we urge you to come and see the research this scholar has assembled.

This event will bring a new level of clarity to the reality behind 9/11 as well as urgency for Americans to call for justice and accountability from their government. David Ray Griffin is the author of "The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions About the Bush Administration and 9/11" and"The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions & Distortions". Dr. Griffin is Professor of Religion and Theology at the Claremont School of Theology where he taught for over 30 years, retiring in 2004. He has authored or edited over two dozen books including "Deep Religious Pluralism" and "Two Great Truths: A New Synthesis of Scientific Naturalism and Christian Faith. Dr. Griffin is one of 60 people listed in a global list of leading Christian theologians. See or call 212-714-7147 for background on our organization.

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Secrecy, being an instrument of conspiracy, ought never to be the system of a regular government. Jeremy Bentham

Matthew Rothschild / The Progressive

Deb Riechmann / Associated Press
"If he wants the real opinions of the troops, he can't do it in a nationally televised teleconference," Rieckhoff said. "He needs to be talking to the boots on the ground and that's NOT a bunch of captains."

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Retired General William E. Odom / Anti
Dated October 3rd

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... In the United States today, the Declaration of Independence hangs on schoolroom walls, but foreign policy follows Machiavelli. Howard Zinn

Commentary by Jeremy Scahill

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Michael Butler / American Chronicle

[Duchess Note ... Remember to swing by "Friends of Friday Forum" (link posted at left in sidebar, along with several "new" links to other cool websites) and check out some brilliant commentary by honest, clear thinking, intelligent, caring liberals & progressives.]

Monday, October 10, 2005

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home. Edward R. Murrow

[Duchess Note - Last evening a former NYC Kucitizen and friend of mine took me [early b-day pressie] to see a new film directed by George Clooney. This 95 minute film, done all in black & white, is absolutely brilliant. I'm talking about GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK! This is the film to see right now, definitely Oscar material AND it'll blow you away. The cast and "look" are spot on, plus the Jazz music is divine. This film portrays 1950s TV journalism at its liberal best. [We need more Edward R. Murrows in the news media today.] This is about real journalism ... during the McCarthy era ... not that fake crap you see on Fox News & CNN. I highly recommend this film and if you wish to learn more, check out the website at:]


Don Hazen, AlterNet
Robert Greenwald's upcoming documentary about Wal-Mart's predatory practices is part of an unprecedented progressive media campaign.

Part Two Commentary by Gary Vance

Evan Derkacz, AlterNet
The president's 'Top 10 Derailed Plots' speech was a sorry attempt to convince a skeptical public that the U.S. should remain in Iraq.

Mark Weisbrot, Providence Journal

Chris Mooney, AlterNet
The right-wing's contempt for science will lead to economic and ecological calamity -- unless we fight back.

Bush’s administration has insisted that political progress would quell the insurgency. But the reverse may be true, U.S. analysts say.
Tyler Marshall & Louise Roug, Los Angeles Times

Megan Marz, In These Times
Despite taking 20 years to arrive in the U.S., a new book by an Iraqi woman is timelier than ever.

David Rossie, Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin

Friday, October 07, 2005

Commentary by Peggy Fry
But our “public servants” apparently have no shame. In the aftermath as the rebuilding begins, the no-bid contracts going to those with ties to the Bush Administration, the declaration of “free enterprise zones” that allow relaxation of labor and environmental laws among others, the ludicrous spectacle of those in charge investigating themselves for wrongdoing, underscores the reality that our government is its own little empire, serving only to promote and empower those who travel in its spheres, be they elected officials, corporations, lobbyists and any other big money interest.” We the People”, in the meantime, are reduced to we the spectators, who watch this distorted, corrupt version of democracy like an endless sporting event, waving our flags on cue like an audience at a game show when the applause light comes on.

Matthew Rothschild / The Progressive
After a Wal-Mart employee turned in a high school student's anti-Bush poster to the police, the Secret Service came calling.

Terrific News From NYC Chapter Dept of Peace on Upcoming PeacEvents

This has been an exciting time for the Department of Peace Campaign and there is still a lot happening in our area, so check out the NY Department of Peace website TODAY for upcoming events. Go to ...

1] DoP Senate bill - Thank you Senator Mark Dayton!

On September 22nd, 2005, Senator Mark Dayton (D-MN) introduced the Department of Peace legislation into the U.S. Senate. This is a huge moment for our campaign, and for the future of the Department of Peace! Senator Daytons leadership and enthusiastic support will take us to the next level in our work to establish this historic legislation for peace into an organizing structure in our government. Please take the time to call Senator Dayton at 202-224-3244 and thank him for taking this bold, courageous and historic stand.

We also now have 60 co-sponsors in the House. When we introduced this bill in April 2003 we had only 43 co-sponsors. We have made fantastic progressover the last 2 years.

2] Brooklyn Peace Fair - Brooklyn Peace Fair 2005 at the YWCA

Panel discussion at 12:30 featuring Department of Peace, Code Pink and the War Resisters League.

The Brooklyn Peace Fair is FREE and open to the public. Children, teens, educators, and adults of all ages are welcome for a day of performances, workshops, and children's activities! Dozens of peace and social justice groups will be on hand. Brooklyn Peace Fair highlights include:

• Keynote address by Cindy Sheehan (co-founder, Gold Star Families for Peace; mother of Casey, killed in Iraq) at 11:00 am.
• Awards Ceremony for the winners of the YWCA Youth Essay Contest at 12:30 pm.
• Workshops on a wide range of issues – Iraq, Afghanistan, East Timor, Korea, Health Care Justice, Anti-War Activism, Justice for Prisoners, and more
• Performances and readings by including the Brooklyn Women's Chorus, Gowanus Wild Cats, Al Adwa Dance, Judy and Nelson David and many more
• Activities for children, storytelling, music and singing, arts and crafts
• Donations Bring books for prisoners and non-perishable food for Katrina victims.

For more info, go to:

Message from Care2 & ThePetitionTeam - Stop Congress from selling 15 National Parks

What I'm about to tell you is so outrageous, it's hard to believe it's true. But unfortunately, it is, Representative Richard Pombo (R-CA) has outlined a plan for the House draft budget reconciliation bill to sell off 15 national parks for energy and commercial development. That's right -our natural heritage could soon be up for sale. Please sign this petition today to stop Congress' national park give-away:

One of the parks on the chopping block is Lake Clark National Park and Preserve in Alaska. Lake Clark protects the largest known Athapaskan archeological site in Alaska; an incredibly rugged wilderness containing two active volcanoes; and a wide variety of wildlife, including caribou, Dall sheep, brown bears, bald eagles, and peregrine falcons. The protected Lake Clark watershed is a significant part of the greater Bristol Bay watershed, which contains the world's largest Sockeye salmon fishery. This national treasure is irreplaceable. Incredibly, there's more to the bill than just selling off 23% of the National Park System's acreage. Rep. Pombo's bill would require the Park Service to sell commercial advertising on the exterior and interior of all buses, shuttles, vans, trams, and passenger ferries operated within the National Park System. This bill would also require the Park Service to solicit and sell commercial sponsorship of park visitor centers, education centers, information centers, museums, trails, auditoriums, amphitheaters, and theatres throughout the National Park System.

And a painfully ironic provision of this bill would require the immediate sale of Theodore Roosevelt Island in the District of Columbia, which was established as a memorial for our nation's greatest conservation president. Congress and the administration have a responsibility to protect our national heritage. Instead, Representative Pombo seems prepared to put our American heritage on the auction block, insulting the American people and tarnishing the birthright of current and future generations. Sign this petition today to urge your Representative to oppose Rep. Pombo's National Park give-away!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Message From "Democracy for America" - Politics at its Sleaziest

Do you feel sleazy? Because Tom DeLay thinks you are. After being indicted on a charge of criminal corruption, Tom DeLay complained on FOX News about "politics at its sleaziest." He's mad at the Texas grand jury that issued the indictment. And he's furious at you and Democracy for America for the year long effort we've undertaken to expose the truth. Now, a grand jury has indicted DeLay a second time on charges of money laundering. DeLay says we have, "drug [his] name through the mud." If that's what he calls denouncing corruption, so be it. I call it "taking our country back."

You and thousands of others have created the climate where Tom DeLay no longer goes unchallenged. But he isn't the only bad apple. A culture of cronyism is rotting the Republican Party. And because they're in charge of all three branches of government, it's destroying our democracy too. We have shown that we have the power to topple even the biggest obstacles. But we can only do it when we work together. Help DFA take our country back by contributing today:

You put Tom DeLay on the run. Over 90,000 DFA members demanded accountability by signing the "Stop Tom DeLay" petition last year. You helped run a television ad that gave him the biggest electoral scare of his career. You put up billboards in and around his district that called him out on his pay-to-play politics. And the grassroots activists of DFA in Houston hosted the "Save America without DeLay" picnic, drawing hundreds of local volunteers to campaign against DeLay -- in his district -- a full 17 months before next year's election. They say you're just a sore loser and this is all sour grapes. Well, it's not. It's about a democracy in which our leaders aren't crooks. Only after we clean up Washington will our country have competent leadership, balanced budgets and an end to the immoral war in Iraq. Tom DeLay has said he's going to hold onto his power, even if he has to relinquish his title of majority leader. He'll do it too. Unless we stop him:

The Republican National Committee is implicated in the latest charges against DeLay. So you can be sure that they'll be on the attack again soon. That's how they try to change the debate. But we're not going to let them do it. Tom DeLay will be tried in a court of law. And the other Republicans in Washington will have their turn in front of the voters soon enough. Consider becoming a recurring monthly donor and help DFA keep the pressure on.

What Tom DeLay calls an "abomination," is your work exposing the truth. He calls it sleazy. I call it patriotic.

Garth Franklin / Sharpe Appreciation Society / Dark Horizons


Molly Ivins, AlterNet
Big surprise and big trouble: Bush's new Supreme Court nominee is a Texas conservative and a fundamentalist Christian.

Agence France Presse

Joshua Holland, AlterNet
You won't learn what the biggest humanitarian relief effort in human history was about by reading the 'Wall Street Journal.'

[The Bush Administration’s refusal of Cuba’s offer for medical assistance following Hurricane Katrina.]
Commentary by Stephen Zunes

Stephen Pizzo, News for RealRecessions begin when consumers suddenly discover they can no longer keep pace with their bills. And this one has already begun.

Will Durst, AlterNet
Mr. DeLay and ethical lapses are not unfamiliar dance partners. They go together like Chaplin and jerky film.

[Rockers let rip in Chicago for Hurricane Katrina benefit]
Blair Fischer / Rolling Stone News