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Friday, September 5, 2008

I have to share

Hello all,

So i watched the Democratic and Republican conventions the past 2 weeks, and I must say that the mainstream media missed it all this time. How exciting was it this week to watch the Republican geriatrics meeting? And although the Democratic meeting event was more exciting, they still couldn't dance. That's what most of my friends got out of the mainstream media coverage the past two weeks. I can't stand it. I have been watching so many free speech shows (I am lucky enough to get the FreeSpeech TV channel) and reading so many indy reporter articles of what's happening outside of the conventions. If the media actually covered those happenings... wow... what ratings they would have gotten then. No mention of the ridiculous arrests made. No mention of the Ron Paul convention which was a huge success. Oh, wait, they did talk about Palin. A relative newcomer to the arena and as such, I don't have much against her. Maybe it's for a different reason altogether that I want to believe her, but the fact of the matter is that she has aligned herself with McCain (who for some reason could lift his damaged arms enough to do the "Politicians point and wave" to the empty upper deck seats of the stadium they were at). That alone is reason not to trust a pretty face. I am straying...

So, here below is an example of what I've been reading about. It is a disgusting sample of what has happened to hundreds of innocent people this week and last. It is a gross representation of what has become of our society and what has happened while we watch our TV's and stay inside our homes out of fear. Here it is:

Why We Were Falsely Arrested
Amy Goodman Truthdig September 4, 2008

St. Paul, Minnesota - Government crackdowns on journalists are a true threat to democracy. As the Republican National Convention meets in St. Paul, Minn., this week, police are systematically targeting journalists. I was arrested with my two colleagues, “Democracy Now!” producers Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar, while reporting on the first day of the RNC. I have been wrongly charged with a misdemeanor. My co-workers, who were simply reporting, may be charged with felony riot.
The Democratic and Republican national conventions have become very expensive and protracted acts of political theater, essentially four-day-long advertisements for the major presidential candidates. Outside the fences, they have become major gatherings for grass-roots movements-for people to come, amidst the banners, bunting, flags and confetti, to express the rights enumerated in the Constitution’s First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Behind all the patriotic hyperbole that accompanies the conventions, and the thousands of journalists and media workers who arrive to cover the staged events, there are serious violations of the basic right of freedom of the press. Here on the streets of St. Paul, the press is free to report on the official proceedings of the RNC, but not to report on the police violence and mass arrests directed at those who have come to petition their government, to protest.
It was Labor Day, and there was an anti-war march, with a huge turnout, with local families, students, veterans and people from around the country gathered to oppose the war. The protesters greatly outnumbered the Republican delegates.
There was a positive, festive feeling, coupled with a growing anxiety about the course that Hurricane Gustav was taking, and whether New Orleans would be devastated anew. Later in the day, there was a splinter march. The police-clad in full body armor, with helmets, face shields, batons and canisters of pepper spray-charged. They forced marchers, onlookers and working journalists into a nearby parking lot, then surrounded the people and began handcuffing them.
Nicole was videotaping. Her tape of her own violent arrest is chilling. Police in riot gear charged her, yelling, “Get down on your face.” You hear her voice, clearly and repeatedly announcing “Press! Press! Where are we supposed to go?” She was trapped between parked cars. The camera drops to the pavement amidst Nicole’s screams of pain. Her face was smashed into the pavement, and she was bleeding from the nose, with the heavy officer with a boot or knee on her back. Another officer was pulling on her leg. Sharif was thrown up against the wall and kicked in the chest, and he was bleeding from his arm.
I was at the Xcel Center on the convention floor, interviewing delegates. I had just made it to the Minnesota delegation when I got a call on my cell phone with news that Sharif and Nicole were being bloody arrested, in every sense. Filmmaker Rick Rowley of Big Noise Films and I raced on foot to the scene. Out of breath, we arrived at the parking lot. I went up to the line of riot police and asked to speak to a commanding officer, saying that they had arrested accredited journalists.
Within seconds, they grabbed me, pulled me behind the police line and forcibly twisted my arms behind my back and handcuffed me, the rigid plastic cuffs digging into my wrists. I saw Sharif, his arm bloody, his credentials hanging from his neck. I repeated we were accredited journalists, whereupon a Secret Service agent came over and ripped my convention credential from my neck. I was taken to the St. Paul police garage where cages were set up for protesters. I was charged with obstruction of a peace officer. Nicole and Sharif were taken to jail, facing riot charges.
The attack on and arrest of me and the “Democracy Now!” producers was not an isolated event. A video group called I-Witness Video was raided two days earlier. Another video documentary group, the Glass Bead Collective, was detained, with its computers and video cameras confiscated. On Wednesday, I-Witness Video was again raided, forced out of its office location. When I asked St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington how reporters are to operate in this atmosphere, he suggested, “By embedding reporters in our mobile field force.”
On Monday night, hours after we were arrested, after much public outcry, Nicole, Sharif and I were released. That was our Labor Day. It’s all in a day’s work.

Well, I think this is gonna have a lot of responses and that we'll be discussing this heatedly for a while. Let me know what you think of the conventions, the mainstream medai, and what happened to these indy reporters.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

Thomas Jefferson

"... God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty.... And what country can preserve its liberties, if it's rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to the facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure."

-Thomas Jefferson

Wow. Over 200 years ago. What has happened since then to make us think we're smarter than previous generations? We have public schools, we have the internet to look up anything we want. We have planes and cars with a road infrastructure and airports wherever we want to go so that we can learn hands on and commit to memory. We think we're so much smarter than those who lived in the 1700's. If that were true, we would not be tolerating being taxed like we do, we would not tolerate our liberties being taken away and our constitution being voided. We would not tolerate wars overseas and sacrificing lives for the profit of a few (who do not risk their lives at the same time). We would say "No!" and back it up with force if need be. We would be proactive and do what we can politically to make things right for our towns, our states, our nation.

Here is a sample of taxes imposed upon us that we are forced to pay (thanks to voyiatzis @ blogspot)

A Partial List of Taxes Americans Pay

Accounts Receivable Tax
Automobile Registration Tax
Building Permit Tax
Capital Gains Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
CDL License Tax
Dog License Tax
Estate Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Permit Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax
IRS Interest Charges (Tax on top of tax)
IRS Penalties (Tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Local Income Tax
Luxury Tax
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Parking Meters
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Septic Permit Tax
Service Charge Taxes
Social Security Taxes
Road Usage Tax (Truckers)
Sales Tax
Recreational Vehicle Tax
Toll Booth Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and non-Recurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Toll Bridge Taxes
Toll Tunnel Taxes
Traffic Fines
Trailer Registration Tax
Utility Tax
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Water-craft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax
Gasoline Tax (42 cents/gallon)
Federal Income Tax

Jefferson didn't pay these taxes. Who's smarter now? He ensured he didn't have to pay these taxes. So here's my question to you (and I ask for a why to your answer)...

Would you rather be alive today or in 1777?

That's all for now. Let me know what you think and as always, thanks for visiting the site.