Thursday, March 27, 2008

Peace Action - Four Thousand Lives Later
Photos by Matthew Weinstein
On March 25 2008, the day after the 4,000th US soldier died in Iraq, hundreds of New Yorkers held a candlelight vigil in Union Square to silently mourn the dead. To see more photos, go to

March 25th Candlelight Vigil

March 25th Candlelight Vigil
[Duchess in the photo all way to the right – the back of my long reddish/brown hair in ponytail]

[Duchess Note - Check out some great new commentary over at FOFF (Friends of FridayForum) today. Link is in the lefthand column of this blog. Be peace.....]

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Peace House in Queens NY

Little House of Peace
Poem & Photo by Joe Allegro

Upon my appointed rounds, each day I drive,
for efficiency, swiftness and order, each day I strive.
In my city car, I scurry through the streets of flushing,
Hoping not to damage or injure, with all of my rushing.

Are the routes completed, are all the streets clean?
Have complaints been answered, was everyone seen?
Did I remember to do, all the things on my list?
With a brain such as mine, surely something’s been missed.

On the radio I tune, to the news of the day,
Though its seldom uplifting, hearing what they say.
Greed, abuse violence, and another roadside bomb,
Has our species lost its mind, can we only do harm?

Yet I know its untrue, we have the potential to be,
The embodiment of Divine, endless possibility.
Though sometimes depressed, I know all will be fine,
The universe always, seems to send me a sign.

This workday some hope, will wonders never cease,
This day I happen upon, a little house of peace.
Brightly painted, with peace signs and words that dance,
Simply stated above the doorway, “give peace a chance”


ABC News “River to River Peace Demonstration” Coverage on March 22nd

Photos & Video Coverage From Code Pink Washington DC Actions On March 18 & 19

Only Two Newspapers Put 4,000 US Troop Deaths on Front Page
Steven Reynolds, All Spin Zone
Meanwhile, Fox News would rather debate the significance of Bill Richardson’s beard.

The Poverty of the Presidential Campaign
Sam Smith, Progressive Review

Letter to Workers World – Cynthia McKinney Election Campaign
Fred Vitale, Green Party of Michigan

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to some fellow Kucitizens for the above articles. Also, new commentary updates over at “Friends of Friday Forum”. To learn more about Cynthia McKinney’s campaign, go to ]

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


A Conscientious Objection
Chris Hedges, Truthdig
Examine the proposals on Iraq offered by Clinton and Obama. They talk about withdrawing some troops, but they also talk about leaving behind forces to protect U.S. bases in Iraq, assigning troops to train the Iraqi army and continuing the fight against “terrorism.” Clinton and Obama do not throw out numbers, but a rough estimate would be 40,000 or 50,000 troops permanently stationed in Iraq. Obama, his advisers say, will also not rule out continuing to use private security companies like Blackwater Worldwide in Iraq. The war would not end under a Democratic administration. It would drag on until the mission collapsed and the U.S. retreated in humiliation. And when pressed, the Democratic candidates have admitted as much. Tim Russert in the New Hampshire debate asked the Democratic candidates to guarantee that all U.S. troops in Iraq would be home by 2013. No one, including John Edwards, was prepared to make such a commitment. Dennis Kucinich, the only Democratic candidate who opposed a continuation of the war, had been excluded from the debate. When the question was asked he was standing outside the hall in the snow with supporters to protest his exclusion.

QUOTE OF THE MOMENT - When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you. Lao-Tzu

Message From “Brooklyn Peace Net” - Brooklyn Said NO to Five Years of War on March 19th
A fantastic outpouring of Brooklyn residents last night, March 19, with a march and vigil starting at Grand Army Plaza and ending with a very emotional candlelight vigil at the U.S. Army Recruiting Station a mile north at Flatbush Avenue and Livingston Street. My thoughts and photos right here ...

5th Anniversary of Iraq Invasion
[Duchess and her friend Linda stand behind lady with sign at the Brooklyn vigil.]

Dennis Kucinich at the Winter Soldier Event

Dennis Kucinich Speaks About Secret Congress Meeting!

US Is Decades Behind Europe in Contraceptives, Experts Report
Philip Hilts, NYTimes

Free Countries Must Defy Chinese Blackmail and Greet the Dalai Lama
Timothy Garton Ash, Comment Is Free
It would be great to watch the Olympics in Beijing this summer, but not over the dead bodies of Buddhist monks.

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to those who contributed the articles above. The Duchess was at the March and vigil on March 19th, protesting the US invasion and occupation of that country.]

Monday, March 24, 2008


An Insightful Personal Conversation with Cynthia McKinney

McKinney Interviewed
Third Party Watch

Want REAL Change? Support Cynthia McKinney’s Power to the People Presidential Campaign!

Why We Do Not Have Impeachment
Michael Cavlan,

Obama’s Church of Contradictions
Lisa Miller, Washington Post

‘So?’ – A Note from Michael Moore

Lulling Americans Into False Sense of Security
William Lewis, Scoop Independent News

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to Linda Z and Chris in sharing the above articles. Duchess will be supporting the Green Party during the NY primary in September and in November's General Election. The Corporate Imperialists do not represent my interests nor my values. They will adhere only to the ultra rich and powerful.]

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

On this, the 5th anniversary of the war against Iraq, Congressman Dennis Kucinich, the leading anti-war voice in the U.S. Congress, asks all citizens to engage in a renewed quest for peace and a national civic activism to ensure that candidates -- from the Presidential race on down -- understand that ending the war is crucial to rescuing our own nation. Watch the video here.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Kucinich Opposes FISA Bill That Infringes On Fourth Amendment Rights
March 14th Press Release

Congressman Kucinich Appearance on DEMOCRACY NOW – March 14th

New Co-Sponsor! Congratulations to New York's 11th Congressional District!
Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke (D) signed on as a co-ponsor to HR 808, the legislation to establish a U.S. Department of Peace and Nonviolence, on March 11, 2008. This brings our total number of co-sponsors (including the sponsor, Congressman Kucinich) to 69. Please call or write the Congresswoman and thank her for her courage, vision and commitment to peace. You can reach Congresswoman Clarke's DC office at ... Phone: (202) 225-6231 OR Fax: (202) 226-0112

More Dishonesty From MoveOn
Message from

Peace Movement ‘Leadership’ Demands? Five Years of Ineffective Action – What Have We Accomplished
Robert Jereski, NYC Independent Media Center

Obama: What Blacks and Progressives Have Bought Into
Glen Ford, Black Agenda Radio Commentary
Blacks and so-called progressives have abandoned their obligation to demand anything from Barack Obama. Especially among African Americans, there is a refusal to even listen to Obama's actual policy positions on matters such as military spending and troop strength or subprime lending disaster relief - issues that go to the very heart of his often profoundly UNPROGRESSIVE policy stances. This historical abdication of responsibility to make politicians accountable has already rendered progressives of all races, irrelevant. Left and Black "leaders" claim they will get around to challenging Obama later on - after he's ensconced securely in the Oval Office. They know nothing - or pretend to know nothing - about mass social behavior. Grass roots action cannot be switched on and off. Once the last vestiges of a movement are shut down, it takes many years to start it up again.

[Duchess Note – Many thanks to Linda (TX), Judith and Rob in sharing the above articles.]

Monday, March 17, 2008


Message from the “Re-Elect Congressman Kucinich Committee” - After Five Years of War, Send a Powerful Message

Five years ago this Wednesday, March 19, 2003, Republican President George Bush launched his illegal, immoral and deceitful war against Iraq. Two weeks ago, 10,000 Republicans in Ohio's 10th Congressional District launched a different kind of strike - changing their party affiliation to vote in a Democratic primary election fueled by an unscrupulous "Dump Dennis" campaign targeting the strongest, most vocal, and most consistent critic of George Bush's policies, foreign and domestic: U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich.

Dennis survived the challenge and won the primary, but he needs your help to retain that Congressional seat and continue speaking out on your behalf.

You can send a powerful message to the Bush Administration, to the Republican leadership, to those thousands of "Dump Dennis" Republicans, to the nation and to the world by making a contribution today to "Keep Dennis."

If you can contribute $10, $20, $100, or more by midnight Wednesday, March 19th, you'll be letting everyone know where you stand – and who you want standing up for you in the U.S. Congress. And please, watch this previous video message from Dennis to better understand what's at stake.

On Wednesday, March 19, at 6pm - Brooklyn Says No to War! Gather at Grand Army Plaza
Gather at junction of Union Street and Plaza Street West, at foot of horse statue, across from Farmers Market. Press conference starts 5:30 pm. March leaves Grand Army Plaza at 6:20 pm, along Flatbush Avenue to Military Recruiting Station at 41 Flatbush Avenue (at Livingston), downtown Brooklyn. Vigil and speakers at Military Recruiting Station, 7-8 pm and is sponsored by Brooklyn For Peace & endorsed by Move

Friday, March 14, 2008

Where the People Don’t Rule
Fred Reed,
We are ruled not by a government but by a class. Here the media are crucial. Unless you spend time outside of America, you may not realize to what extent the press is controlled. The press is largely free, yes, but it is also largely owned by a small number of corporations which, in turn, are run by people from the same pool from which are drawn high-level pols and their advisers. They are rich people who know each other and have the same interests. It is very nearly correct to say that these people are the government of the United States, and that the federal apparatus merely a useful theatrical manifestation. Finally, though it may not be deliberate, the schools produce a pitiably ignorant population that can’t vote wisely. Just as trial lawyers don’t want intelligent jurors, as they are harder to manipulate, so political parties don’t want educated voters. The existence of a puzzled mass gawping at Oprah reduces elections to popularity contests modulated by the state of the economy. One party may win, yes, or the other. But a TV-besotted electorate doesn’t meddle in matters important to its rulers. It has never heard of them.

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, "I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along." You must do the thing you think you cannot do. Eleanor Roosevelt [US Diplomat & Reformer]

Environmental Healing & World Peace
Claudia Sobrevila

Winter Soldier Hearings
For those not living in NYC (the hearings are on WBAI radio, 99.5 FM) and on other Pacifica stations in the US. The Winter Soldier Hearings can be heard, on line at (these hearings go on until 7 PM and will also be held on Saturday and Sunday.) Really important information is coming out [conditions in Iraq] the soldiers' stories of what is going on, and the poor medical care, (If they can get through the VA bureaucracy) that so many injured soldiers recieve when the come home. Please pass on this e-mail to others who may be interested.

New Hampshire Representative, Betty Hall, Discusses Impeachment
Political Chowder, Democracy for NH
NH Rep Betty Hall has introduced a resolution for impeachment to the NH House. If the state legislature passes the resolution, by law the Congress must put it ON THE TABLE.

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to Linda Z, Doreen and Judith B in sharing the above articles.]

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Last ‘Harry Potter’ Book Becomes Two Films
HP & the Deathly Hallows

Yahoo! News

MESSAGE FROM DEMOCRAT.COM - Spitzer Resigns - It's Time to Impeach Bush
Yesterday Gov. Eliot Spitzer apologized again to the people of New York for his personal failings and resigned, just 16 months after winning an historic landslide election with 70% of the vote. But Spitzer's resignation was not entirely voluntary, because Republican leaders were busy drafting Articles of Impeachment. What was Spitzer's impeachable offense? The "lowest" crime in the book.

As we know, the Founding Fathers wanted Impeachment to be used for "High Crimes" like treason, bribery, war crimes, and subverting the Constitution itself. Eliot Spitzer committed no "High Crimes" - but George Bush and Dick Cheney most certainly have, and they continue to do so with absolute impunity. It's time for Congress to impeach them for it.

16 months ago, we posted a petition listing 10 High Crimes which justified impeachment of the Bush/Cheney Regime:

(1) Starting a "war of aggression"
(2) torture
(3) arbitrary detention
(4) war crimes
(5) warrantless wiretapping
(6) signing statements
(7) election fraud
(8) outing a covert CIA operative
(9) the "unitary executive"
(10) gross negligence for Katrina and global warming

Each one of these crimes is as unacceptable today as it was then. After 5 years in Iraq, Bush has killed nearly 4,000 Americans and over 1 million Iraqis and incurred $3 trillion in costs. And there are many more crimes we could add, including Bush's commutation of Scooter Libby's sentence to stop him from testifying about the crimes of Bush and Cheney themselves, and Bush's ongoing threats to bomb Iran. And each one makes Spitzer's "crime" utterly insignificant by comparison.

Over 137,000 of you have signed this petition, and we thank you. (If you've forgotten, our form won't let you sign twice.) But many of you have not. And in the wake of the Republican effort to impeach Eliot Spitzer for his "low" crime, every American who is outraged by Bush's "High Crimes" should sign it. Please tell your Senators and Representative to Impeach Bush and Cheney Now:

Friday, March 07, 2008


[Duchess Note – I’m abit behind on posting updates for “Personal News”, so the following will be a condensed version of activity since beginning of the new year. Views on Super Tuesday and such. Sincere apologies to my devoted blog readers … enjoy the news.]

Early Tuesday evening, January 1st, I jumped on a conference call regarding the NYC Kucinich Team Fundraiser planned for February 2nd. Caitlin originated the idea and we are both the main “point people”. It was a good, productive call with some of the Campaign Staff participating. Many volunteers from the Hudson Valley, Albany and NYC area we’re also on the call.

Thursday evening, January 3rd, was the monthly NYC Kucinich Team meetup. We had a good turnout for this meeting and several new members. Discussions centered on upcoming primaries, caucuses, fundraiser, tabling, phone banking and many ideas/suggestions were brought forth. Guest speaker was Doug Biviano, who’s been the NY State coordinator for about a month. Overall it was a terrific, productive meeting.

Early Friday evening, January 4th, the committee responsible for the NYC Kucinich Fundraiser had another conference call. This was also another productive call and Emma from Kucinich’s Campaign Staff was onboard.

Saturday, January 12th, a group of NYC Kucinich Team members gathered in Union Square to hand out fliers and talk with New Yorkers about the Congressman’s campaign. New team member, Amy Cooper, took the reins on this situation and organized the tabling/flyering. She did a great job, we collected donations for Dennis’ presidential campaign, talked with New Yorkers AND many NYC Kucitizens came out to help. [See photos below] While tabling in Union Square I was briefly interviewed by Greg Oliver. He took my 1 ½ minute interview and narrowed it down to 25 seconds. It’s posted, along with many other interviews, at “Farewell Mr. President” at …


On Sunday, January 13th, went to see a terrific Iranian film at All Souls Church called “Children of Heaven”.

Tuesday evening, January 15th, a “special meeting” was held for the NYC Kucinich Team to discuss phone banking, tabling and the February 2nd fundraiser. The latter will be held at “Chapel of the Sacred Mirrors” in Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan. The turnout at the meeting wasn’t very large, as many team members went to protest outside the NBC Studios in Rockefeller Center. This protest was due to NBC/GE banning Kucinich from the debates in Nevada. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr]

On Thursday, January 17th, I attended NYDoP’s first Board/Core Team meeting of the New Year. Last time many of us got together was at the annual holiday party at Marianne’s place in northern Manhattan. Speaking of Marianne, she chaired this meeting, as Carol was out of town at a retreat in CA. Thank you Marianne! Good, productive meeting and a new committee was formed to handle the issues/goals for the NY City Council Dept of Peace Resolution [#0627].

On Saturday, January 19th, a small group of NYC Kucinich Team members gathered at Bedford Avenue, near L train stop, in Williamsburg to hand out fliers and talk with Brooklynites about Dennis’ campaign. Devery Doleman was organizer of this endeavor and she did a great job. Thanks Devery! It was a colder afternoon then our previous tabling in Manhattan, but we persevered for four hours and drank lots of hot tea. We spoke with many Brooklynites and collected donations for the campaign. Overall a successful endeavor … photo of the group below.


On Wednesday evening, January 23rd, I had a dinner date with Phil. We’d met through the internet back in November/December and exchanged emails/phone calls. Due to a death in his family, we’d postponed dining out to the 23rd. As to the date itself, in a nutshell, it was very nice and had a good meal at a Spanish restaurant on West 23rd Street. Phil was a congenial courteous gent and sadly I was not attracted to him.

Thursday, January 24th, felt like a friggin roller coaster ride for me, as work was busy and then DJK “transitioned out of the race”, plus the NYC Kucinich Team had a “special meeting” that evening. On top of all that; Caitlin and I were in the final phase of plans for the Fundraiser. I’d just gotten Reverend Billy to do a brief segment, plus lined up the caterer. [Four days later we had to cancel the fundraiser due to issues and complications. This greatly saddened me.] When I learned that Dennis was transitioning out of the presidential race, well, it felt like someone kicked me in the stomach real hard. Eight months I’d put into the campaign and my senses were reeling. I even called David Bright for confirmation and details. At the meeting that evening, I told those in attendance that I would continue to spread the word on Dennis’ platform up to Super Tuesday. I could never support the other candidates, as they don’t even come close to representing my values like Dennis does. None of them! As for Super Tuesday, I proudly voted for DJK in the primary and walked out of that booth with a clear conscious.

Sunday, January 27th, I attended a 5th birthday party for Annie’s daughter Rachel out in Sheepshead Bay [Brooklyn]. Party was lots of fun, games, food, socializing and catch up on news with Annie and her hubby David.

Monday, February 4th, saw me back at the foot doctor for treatment of my left foot. That darn Plantar Fascia was acting up again, after being okay since Xmas. Sigh! Later that evening I jumped on a conference call with Joe and Kevin [NYDoP City Council Committee] to discuss our goal regarding Resolution 0627.

Super Tuesday, February 5th, is finally here and I proudly placed my vote for Kucinich. Felt so proud in seeing Dennis’ name on the ballot and the whole NYC/NYS Kucinich Team worked so hard to make that happen. The organizing part of it was tough, at times, but it all paid off in the end. I walked out of that voting booth with a clear conscious. My vote for Dennis was a way of saying “thank you” to the man for standing firm on values and issues. It was also my way of sending a message to the abysmal Democratic Party. My vote cannot be bought with lies, silken words, rhetoric, deception and false hollow promises. The Democratic Party can keep their Corporate Imperialists … they will never receive a vote from me. Never! [I’m switching back to the Green Party.] My vote has to be earned with honesty, truth, compassion and being there for us Americans. People like Dennis Kucinich and Cynthia McKinney embody that completely.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


Kucinich Wins Democratic Primary, Overcoming Tough Challenge In Ohio Congressional Race
Julie Carr Smyth,

Ohio & Cleveland Election News & Results from Primary – Kucinich Wins by 50% of the Vote

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... The "corporatization of America" during the past century has been an attack on democracy. Noam Chomsky

It’s Time to Act to Save Our Democracy
Citzen Class Action
Are you concerned about how the corporate media is manipulating our election process? Have you noticed how they give preferential treatment to certain candidates during the debates? Have you noticed how they exclude the truly progressive anti-war candidates from presidential debates? Are you troubled by the media's efforts to suppress the free exchange of political ideas and progressive policies?

Doublespeak Barack Obama And Continuing US Hypocrisy
Larry Pinkney

I Refuse to Support Hillary or Barack for Voting to Fund an Oil War and Selling Out to Corporate Greed.
Virgil Alley, Run Cynthia Run
I supported Dennis Kucinich until he quit his presidential race and doing what I can to retain his seat in congress. The Democrats have lost my support for their candidate and I want to support Cynthia for president since she has more progressive values than all the other candidates. My Democrat friends are calling me a spoiler but I refuse to support Hillary or Barack for voting to fund an oil war and selling out to corporate greed.

Cost of Iraq War Now Beyond Human Comprehension
Willaim D. Hartung,
War is hell – deadly, dangerous, and expensive. But just how expensive is it?

New Yorkers Get Priced Out of Grocery Stores
Same Pizzigati
Enormous accumulations of wealth are hitting New Yorkers where it really hurts, at the deli counter.

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to Linda in TX for sharing some of the articles.]

Monday, March 03, 2008

When Presidential Bids Perish
Recently some student journalists from Columbia University contacted a few of us who were involved with the NYC Kucinich Team, as well as the Edwards team. They were working on a short film piece or documentary on Presidential candidates who've transitioned out of the 2008 race. Whether you supported these candidates or not, I think you'll find the video's of interest. Also, one can provide feedback on the website itself. Personally, I think the journalists could of done a better job of editing. Some of the info is wrong, but overall its okay. BTW, I was abit camera shy, so you hear me throughout the piece. Regular readers of the Duchess blog know that I was the NYC Organizer & Coordinator from June 2007 thru Feb 2008. Doug was NYS Coordinator for a few months and volunteers Devery/Amy. Check out the visuals at ...

p.s. There is a link to the Dept of Peace at bottom of Overview page. That was my doing :-)