Friday, December 02, 2005

Democracy Now: World AIDS Day, Campus struggles: Hampton & NYU; Goodman on Hardball, Alaina C. Beverly ...

List of "Ghost Prisoners" Possibly in CIA Custody
List of Detainees Published by Human Rights Watch
The following is a list of persons believed to be in U.S. custody as "ghost detainees" -- detainees who are not given any legal rights or access to counsel, and who are likely not reported to or seen by the International Committee of the Red Cross. The list is compiled from media reports, public statements by government officials, and from other information obtained by Human Rights Watch. Human Rights Watch does not consider this list to be complete: there are likely other "ghost detainees" held by the United States.
[. . .]

1. Ibn Al-Shaykh al-Libi
Reportedly arrested on November 11, 2001, Pakistan.
Libyan, suspected commander at al-Qaeda training camp.
Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

2. Abu Faisal
Reportedly arrested on December 12, 2001
Nationality unknown. See next entry.

3. Abdul Aziz
Reportedly arrested on December 14, 2001
Nationality unknown. In early January 2001, Kenton Keith, a spokesman at the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, produced a chart with the names of senior al-Qaeda members listed as killed in action, detained, or on the run. Faisal and Aziz were listed as detained on Dec. 12 and 14, 2001. See: Andrea Stone, "Path to bin Laden may lie behind bars; US interrogates al-Qaeda, Taliban prisoners in hope of nailing down war on terror's prime targets," USA Today, January 8, 2002; Bradley Graham and Walter Pincus, "Al-Qaeda Trainer in U.S. Hands," The Washington Post, January 5, 2002.

4. Abu Zubaydah (also known as Zain al-Abidin Muhahhad Husain)
Reportedly arrested in March 2002, Faisalabad, Pakistan.
Palestinian (born in Saudi Arabia), suspected senior al-Qaeda operational planner. Listed as captured in "George W. Bush: Record of Achievement, Waging and Winning the War on Terror," available on the White House website. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

5. Abdul Rahim al-Sharqawi (aka Riyadh the facilitator)
Reportedly arrested in January 2002
Possibly Yemeni, suspected al-Qaeda member (possibly transferred to Guantanamo). Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch (see note 27).

6. Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi
Reportedly arrested in January 2002
Nationality unknown, presumably Iraqi, suspected commander of al-Qaeda training camp. U.S. officials told Associated Press on January 8, 2002 and March 30, 2002, of al-Iraqi's capture. See e.g., "Raid May Have Nabbed Bin Laden Lieutenant," Associated Press, March 30, 2002. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch (see note 27).

7. Muhammed al-Darbi
Reportedly arrested in August 2002
Yemeni, suspected al-Qaeda member. The Washington Post reported on October 18, 2002: "U.S. officials learned from interviews with Muhammad Darbi, an al Qaeda member captured in Yemen in August, that a Yemen cell was planning an attack on a Western oil tanker, sources said." On December 26, 2002, citing "U.S. intelligence and national security officials," the Washington Post reports that al-Darbi, as well as Ramzi Binalshibh [see below], Omar al-Faruq [reportedly escaped from U.S. custody in July 2005], and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri [see below] all "remain under CIA control."

8. Ramzi bin al-Shibh
Reportedly arrested on September 13, 2002
Yemeni, suspected al-Qaeda conspirator in Sept. 11 attacks (former roommate of one of the hijackers). Listed in "George W. Bush: Record of Achievement, Waging and Winning the War on Terror," available on the White House website. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

9. Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri (or Abdulrahim Mohammad Abda al-Nasheri, aka Abu Bilal al-Makki or Mullah Ahmad Belal)
Reportedly arrested in November 2002, United Arab Emirates.
Saudi or Yemeni, suspected al-Qaeda chief of operations in the Persian Gulf, and suspected planner of the USS Cole bombing, and attack on the French oil tanker, Limburg. Listed in "George W. Bush: Record of Achievement, Waging and Winning the War on Terror," available on the White House website. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

10. Mohammed Omar Abdel-Rahman (aka Asadullah)
Reportedly arrested in February 2003, Quetta, Pakistan.
Egyptian, son of the Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, who was convicted in the United States of involvement in terrorist plots in New York. See Agence France Presse, March 4, 2003: "Pakistani and US agents captured the son of blind Egyptian cleric Omar Abdel Rahman. . . a US official said Tuesday. Muhamad Abdel Rahman was arrested in Quetta, Pakistan, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity." David Johnston, New York Times, March 4, 2003: "On Feb. 13, when Pakistani authorities raided an apartment in Quetta, they got the break they needed. They had hoped to find Mr. [Khalid Sheikh] Mohammed, but he had fled the apartment, eluding the authorities, as he had on numerous occasions. Instead, they found and arrested Muhammad Abdel Rahman, a son of Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, the blind Egyptian cleric. . ."

11. Mustafa al-Hawsawi (aka al-Hisawi)
Reportedly arrested on March 1, 2003 (together with Khalid Sheikh Mohammad), Pakistan.
Saudi, suspected al-Qaeda financier. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

12. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed
Reportedly arrested on March 1, 2003, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.
Kuwaiti (Pakistani parents), suspected al-Qaeda, alleged to have "masterminded" Sept. 11 attacks, killing of Daniel Pearl, and USS Cole attack in 2000. Listed in "George W. Bush: Record of Achievement, Waging and Winning the War on Terror," available on the White House website. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

13. Majid Khan
Reportedly arrested on March-April 2003, Pakistan.
Pakistani, alleged link to Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, alleged involvement in plot to blow up gas stations in the United States. Details about Khan's arrest were revealed in several media reports, especially in Newsweek: Evan Thomas, "Al Qaeda in America: The Enemy Within," Newsweek, June 23, 2003. U.S. prosecutors provided evidence that Majid Khan was in U.S. custody during the trial of 24-year-old Uzair Paracha, who was convicted in November 2005 of conspiracy charges, and of providing material support to terrorist organizations.

14. Yassir al-Jazeeri (aka al-Jaziri)
Reportedly arrested on March 15, 2003, Pakistan.
Possibly Moroccan, Algerian, or Palestinian, suspected al-Qaeda member, linked to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Details of arrest reported: Alex Spillius, "FBI Questions al-Qaeda Man in Pakistan," Daily Telegraph, March 17, 2003; Paul Haven, "Al-Qaida suspect begins cooperating with authorities, Pakistani security officials say," Associated Press, March 17, 2003.

15. Ali Abdul Aziz Ali (aka Ammar al Baluchi)
Reportedly arrested on April 29, 2003, Karachi, Pakistan.
A Pakistani, he is alleged to have funneled money to September 11 hijackers, and alleged to have been involved with the Jakarta Marriot bombing and in handling Jose Padilla’s travel to the United States.
U.S. Judge Sidney Stein ruled that defense attorneys for Uzair Paracha could introduce statements Baluchi made to U.S. interrogators, proving that he was in U.S. custody. Former Deputy Attorney General James Comey also mentioned Baluchi during remarks to the media about the case of Jose Padilla on June 1, 2004

16. Waleed Mohammed bin Attash (aka Tawfiq bin Attash or Tawfiq Attash Khallad)
Reportedly arrested on April 29, 2003, Karachi, Pakistan.
Saudi (of Yemeni descent), suspected of involvement in the bombing of the USS Cole in 2000, and the Sept. 11 attacks. See Afzal Nadeem, "Pakistan Arrests Six Terror Suspects, including Planner of Sept. 11 and USS Cole Bombing," Associated Press, April 30, 2003. His brother, Hassan Bin Attash, is currently held in Guantanamo. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.
President Bush described his arrest as a "major, significant find" in the war against terrorism: "He's a killer. He was one of the top al-Qaeda operatives. . . . He was right below Khalid Shaikh Mohammad on the organizational chart of al-Qaeda. He is one less person that people who love freedom have to worry about." David Ensor and Syed Mohsin Naqvi, "Bush Hails Capture of Top al Qaeda Operative,", May 1, 2003.

17. Adil al-Jazeeri
Reportedly arrested on June 17, 2003 outside Peshawar, Pakistan.
Algerian, suspected al-Qaeda and longtime resident of Afghanistan, alleged "leading member" and "longtime aide to bin Laden." (Possibly transferred to Guantanamo.) Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

18. Hambali (aka Riduan Isamuddin)
Reportedly arrested on August 11, 2003, Thailand.
Indonesian, involved in Jemaah Islamiyah and al-Qaeda, alleged involvement in organizing and financing the Bali nightclub bombings, the Jakarta Marriot Hotel bombing, and preparations for the September 11 attacks. Listed in "George W. Bush: Record of Achievement, Waging and Winning the War on Terror," available on the White House website. Previously listed as "disappeared" by Human Rights Watch.

19. Mohamad Nazir bin Lep (aka Lillie, or Li-Li)
Reportedly arrested in August 2003, Bangkok, Thailand.
Malaysian, alleged link to Hambali. See next entry.

20. Mohamad Farik Amin (aka Zubair)
Reportedly arrested in June 2003, Thailand.
Malaysian, alleged link to Hambali. For more information on the arrest of Mohammad Farik Amin and Mohamad Nazir bin Lep, see: Kimina Lyall, "Hambali Talks Under Grilling; Slaughter of Innocents," The Australian, August 21, 2003; Kimina Lyall, "Hambali Moved JI Front Line to Bangladesh, Pakistan," The Weekend Australian, September 27, 2003; Simon Elegant and Andrew Perrin, "Asia's Terror Threat," Time Asia Magazine, October 6, 2003; Simon Elegant, "The Terrorist Talks," Time, October 13, 2003.

21. Tariq Mahmood
Reportedly arrested in October 2003, Islamabad, Pakistan.
Dual British and Pakistani nationality, alleged to have ties to al-Qaeda. See "Pakistan grills detained British al-Qaeda suspect," Agence-France Presse, November 10, 2005; Sean O'Neill, "Five still held without help or hope; Guantanamo," The Times, January 12, 2005.

22. Hassan Ghul
Reportedly arrested on January 23, 2004, in Kurdish highlands, Iraq.
Pakistani, alleged to be Zarqawi's courier to bin Laden; alleged ties to Khalid Sheikh Mohammad. President Bush described Hassan Ghul's arrest on January 26, 2004, in comments to the press, Little Rock, Arkansas: "Just last week we made further progress in making America more secure when a fellow named Hassan Ghul was captured in Iraq. Hassan Ghul reported directly to Khalid Sheik Mohammad, who was the mastermind of the September 11 attacks. . . . He was captured in Iraq, where he was helping al Qaeda to put pressure on our troops."

23. Musaad Aruchi (aka Musab al-Baluchi, al-Balochi, al-Baloshi)
Reportedly arrested in Karachi on June 12, 2004, in a "CIA-supervised operation."
Presumably Pakistani. Pakistani intelligence officials told journalists Aruchi was held by Pakistani authorities at an airbase for three days, before being handed over to the U.S., and then flown in an unmarked CIA plane to an undisclosed location. Anwar Iqbal, "Pakistan Hands Over 1998 Bomber to US," United Press International, August 3, 2004. See also, reports cited in next entry, and Zahid Hussain, "Pakistan Intensifies Effort Against al Qaeda," The Asian Wall Street Journal, August 5, 2004; Bill Powell, "Target: America," Time Magazine, August 16, 2004, Vol. 164, Issue 7; "Pakistani Aides: Al-Qaida Arrest in June Opened Leads," Dow Jones International News, August 3, 2004; "CIA-supervised arrest in Pak opened valuable leads: Report," The Press Trust of India, August 3, 2004.

24. Mohammed Naeem Noor Khan (aka Abu Talaha)
Reportedly arrested on July 13, 2004, Pakistan.
Pakistani, computer engineer, was held by Pakistani authorities, and likely transferred to U.S. custody. (Possibly in joint U.S.-Pakistani custody.) See Douglas Jehl and David Rohde, "Captured Qaeda Figure Led Way To Information Behind Warning," New York Times, August 2, 2004. Kamran Khan, "Al Qaeda Arrest In June Opened Valuable Leads," Washington Post, August 3, 2004; Kamran Khan and Dana Priest, "Pakistan Pressures Al Qaeda; Military Operation Results In Terror Alert and Arrests," Washington Post, August 5, 2004; "Pakistan questioning almost 20 Al-Qaeda suspects," Agence-France Presse, August 5, 2005; Robert Block and Gary Fields, "Al Qaeda's Data on U.S. Targets Aren't New: Surveillance of Listed Sites In Eastern Cities Took Place Over Time, Perhaps Years," The Asian Wall Street Journal, August 7, 2004; Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark, "One Huge U.S. Jail," The Guardian, March 19, 2005.

25. Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani
Reportedly arrested on July 24, 2004, Pakistan
Tanzanian, reportedly indicted in the United States for 1998 embassy bombings. U.S. and Pakistani intelligence officials told UPI that Ghailani was transferred to "CIA custody" in early August. See Anwar Iqbal, "Pakistan Hands Over 1998 Bomber to US," United Press International, August 3, 2004. Pakistani security officials told AFP and Reuters in January 2005, that Ghailani was handed over to the United States "several months ago." See e.g., "Pakistan hands Tanzanian Al-Qaeda bombing suspect to US," Agence France Presse, January 25, 2005. Listed as captured in "George W. Bush: Record of Achievement, Waging and Winning the War on Terror," available on the White House website.

26. Abu Faraj al-Libi
Reportedly arrested on May 4, 2005, North Western Frontier Province, Pakistan.
Libyan, suspected al-Qaeda leader of operations, alleged mastermind of two assassination attempts on Musharraf. Col. James Yonts, a U.S. military spokesman in Afghanistan, "said in an email to The Associated Press that al-Libbi was taken directly from Pakistan to the U.S. and was not brought to Afghanistan."

The above list is compiled by Human Rights Watch and can be found here. On page A9 of this morning's New York Times, Ian Fisher has an article about this which does not list the ghost detainees.

We'll now move on to our usual opening.

Justice Dept.: Delay Redistricting Plan Violated Voting Act
A memo obtained by the Washington Post shows lawyers at the Justice Department concluded a controversial Texas redistricting plan spearheaded by indicted Congressmember Tom Delay violated the Voting Rights Act. The memo argued the redistricting plan illegally diluted the voting influence of minorities in several Texas congressional districts. The memo said: "The State of Texas has not met its burden in showing that the proposed congressional redistricting plan does not have a discriminatory effect." Texas lawmakers approved the plan anyway, the memo says, because it stood to increase the number of elected federal Texas Republicans. Following the plan's approval in 2003, Republicans gained five seats in the following year's congressional elections. The redistricting plan is currently being challenged before the U.S. Supreme Court. Meanwhile, Congressmember Delay is facing state charges of money laundering and conspiracy in connection with state elections.

Families Plead for Release of CPT Hostages
The families of the four Christian Peacemakers Team members taken hostage in Iraq have released a statement calling for the release of their loved ones. The daughter of Tom Fox, the Virginia resident who was kidnapped along with one British citizen and two Canadians Saturday, wrote: "My father made a choice to travel to Iraq and listen to those who are not heard. His belief that peaceful resolutions can be found to every conflict has been tested time and again, but he remains committed to that ideal, heart and soul. This is very difficult for my brother and me. We want to be with our dad again." The daughter is not releasing her name to the public. The families' letters are available on the CPT

Rumsfeld, Pace Differ on US Response to Iraqi Abuse
At the Pentagon, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld engaged in an unusual exchange with Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman General Peter Pace at a press conference Tuesday. Asked whether US troops are responsible for preventing human rights abuses by Iraqi forces, General Pace answered: "It is absolutely the responsibility of every U.S. service member, if they see inhumane treatment being conducted, to intervene to stop it." As Pace elaborated, Rumsfeld interrupted him, saying: "But I don't think you mean they have an obligation to physically stop it; it's to report it." But General Pace replied: "If they are physically present when inhumane treatment is taking place, sir, they have an obligation to try to stop it", he said.

The above three items are from today's Democracy Now! Headlines and were selected by Eddie, Nolanda and Brandon. Democracy Now! ("always worth watching," as Marcia says):

Headlines for December 2, 2005

- 1,000th Capital Punishment Death Reached in North Carolina
- Justice Dept.: Delay Redistricting Plan Violated Voting Act
- Families Plead for Release of CPT Hostages
- Insurgents Attack Military Base in Ramadi
- Senate Committee to Hold Session on Newspaper Propaganda
- South African Court Approves Gay Marriage
- Events Mark 50th Anniversary of Montgomery Bus Boycott

Los Titulares de Hoy: Democracy Now!'s daily news summary translated into Spanish

World AIDS Day: A Look at the Fight Against the Global Pandemic

The 18th annual World AIDS Day was observed yesterday around the theme "Stop AIDS, Keep the Promise." The World Health Organization estimates that 3.1 million people worldwide will die of AIDS this year including 500,000 children and a recent UN AIDS report showed that the number of people living with HIV has topped 40 million for the first time. We speak with the Center for Health and Gender Equity. [includes rush transcript]

CDC: AIDS the Leading Cause of Death Among African American Women Aged 25-44

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 68% of women who contract AIDS are black. The CDC also reported AIDS was a leading cause of death among black women ages 25 to 44. We speak with the National Coalition of One Hundred Black Women.

Hampton Univ. Students Face Disciplinary Action for Anti-Bush Walkout

Seven students at Hampton University in Virginia face disciplinary action for staging a walkout during the World Can't Wait day of action against the Bush administration one month ago. Shortly before they appear before a disciplanary hearing today, we speak with one of the walkout's main organizers. [includes rush transcript]

AMY GOODMAN: We are joined by one of those students, Bryan Ogilvie, sophomore at Hampton, majoring in entrepreneurship. He is a member of the school's Progressive Student Alliance. Welcome to Democracy Now!, Bryan.

BRYAN OGILVIE: Hey, how are you doing?

AMY GOODMAN: Very good. Can you talk about what you did?

BRYAN OGILVIE: Well, actually, as you know, November 2 was the nationwide student walkout and protest of the Bush regime under the World Can't Wait organization. So a few of our students got in contact with some of the World Can't Wait people in New York, and we decided to bring that event out here on campus, because the student body here could really use some social awareness, we felt.

Basically, what we wanted to do was structure this event where we can address a multitude of issues around this entire Bush regime awareness. We addressed issues such as the cost of the war in Iraq, AIDS, homophobia, the prison-industrial complex, and a multitude of other things, but about half an hour into our event, we were just told we couldn't pass out any fliers. We were videotaped, and several students just had their I.D.s confiscated. So we weren't able to actually do too much of what we planned.

NYU Grad Student Strike: A Debate On the Rights of Students to Unionize

The New York University graduate student strike has entered its 24th day. On November 9th, some of the school's graduate student teaching and research assistants went on strike in an effort to force the school to recognize the graduate student union. We host a debate between Michael Palm, chair of the student union, and Paul Boghossian, professor of philosophy who is representing the administration.

Jonah highlights this from last night's Hardball (the topic is the propaganda & the Lincoln Group):

MATTHEWS: Anyway, let me go to Amy Goodman. Your view of this matter. This is of course the story we're getting the last couple of days. It's going to be investigated tomorrow by the chairman of the Armed Services Committee, John Warner of Virginia. Senator Warner said he's going to be holding--getting a briefing from the Pentagon as to what role they played at the top. What do you make of it, Amy?

AMY GOODMAN, DEMOCRACY NOW: Well, Chris, it's an absolute outrage, and there are many levels of it. One is of course the outrage against the Iraqi people, that they're not getting true operations, that this is a kind of psychological warfare, and you've dealt with it well on the program.

But I want to talk about a few other levels of this. You also have the blowback effect. When you have pieces that appear in Iraqi papers and then you have newspapers around the world and in this country as well citing those papers, and the blowback comes to this country.

And then you have the marginalization of a press in Iraq that may well be telling the truth. You have organizations like Al-Jazeera. If you have some news outlets telling the truth and others only telling the, quote, "good news." In fact, the lies that the Bush administration is putting out, and wants the Iraqi people to believe, that marginalizes those news organizations.

Ken e-mails to note Alaina C. Beverly's "Voter Photo ID - Legislators Should Look Before They Leap" (The Black Commentator):

State legislators are jumping on the voter identification bandwagon so quickly that these voter "integrity" initiatives have become a modern tool of voter suppression, much like poll taxes, white-only primaries, and grandfather clauses of the past. Whether deliberately or unknowingly, state legislatures are casually proposing measures that will have a devastating impact on poor, African-American and other minority voters.

For months, Wisconsin has been pushing to join the ranks of states like Indiana, Florida and Georgia by mandating that voters provide a government-issued photo identification ("photo ID") to register or vote. Earlier versions of the proposed law were heard on the floor of the Wisconsin legislature on three separate occasions, and were rightfully vetoed by Governor Jim Doyle. The most recent attempt to override the Governor's veto failed by just one vote.

Now in an unprecedented move, the legislature proposes to amend the state constitution to include a voter photo ID requirement ("Wisconsin Amendment"). Although, Wisconsin currently accepts 13 forms of identification at the polls (including allowing another voter to vouch for you), the constitutional amendment proposed in May, would prevent potential voters from registering or voting without a government issued photo ID. As drafted, the law is silent on whether individuals without photo ID would be allowed to cast provisional ballots as mandated by federal law, or whether, like South Dakota's photo ID measure, a voter could sign an affidavit swearing to their identity as a fail-safe means of voting.

Susan highlights this from CODEPINK:

Say NO to War Toys &
Shop CODEPINK Style!

Every holiday season, manufacturers prey on our children with pro-war propaganda disguised as innocent toys. Don't let your child be a victim of G.I. Joe! Check out the CODEPINK No War Toys webpage for ideas and actions you can take to Say No to War Toys! You can also find other fun holiday ideas, like our outrageous, alternative holiday carols, Raging Granny-style! Also, don't forget to check out our online store for fabulous gift giving ideas.

The following was sent in to the public account ( by a visitor. I believe the visitor wants the issue noted so we'll quote. I do not have permission to identify the visitor so we won't name:

Judge Alito says he's a strict constructionist, except when it comes to the language in his own job application; he says he won't legislate from the bench, except when the dispute involves the company that minds his own cash; he says he's not a judicial activist, except when he volunteered on his own as a soldier of fortune for the radical right; he says he'd go to bat for victims of constitutional injustice... well maybe he's just applying for his "new job," while feeding us the same old pappahirum.
Take his Chadwick decision which his supporters have successfully buried by characterizing it as being just "a rich man's nasty divorce." Would were that the holding. But its tentacles reach far and wide with dire implications for our hard-earned civil rights and freedom. Here's the lowdown:
Beatty Chadwick has been in jail in for over TEN YEARS on a divorce case. Where? In China, Iran, or a secret gulag in Siberia? No, he's in a Pennsylvania County Jail.
Judge Alito wrote the 3rd Circuit decision affirming his "civil incarceration." The facts of the case are uncertain since Chadwick was never tried nor convicted of anything by a local county court. His ex-wife says he has hidden marital assets off-shore. Chadwick maintains he can't comply with the court's order to return the money. He's lost in the system and can't ransom himself out. At this point he's already paid his debt in years, 10 1/2 to be exact.
The founders of this nation wrote a Constitution that abolished debtor's prisons. The cruel punishment inflicted on this civil detainee under the guise of constitutional "origanalism," indicates that on the subject of civil rights, Alito just doesn't see the forest from the trees... a scary trait for a Supreme Court justice.
Can we afford to squander our hard-earned freedom by putting our trust in a judge who uses one standard to measure his own compliance with the law and another for the rest of us? Ask Beatty.

If you're unfamiliar with this topic, ABC (the United States' ABC) covered this in April. It's hard to believe that conservatives are as excited by Alito as they seem to be. You'd assume a few in that crowd would hear that tale and scream in horror for a number of reasons. You'd assume that terms such as "debtors prison" would be tossed around.

While we're in the public account, we'll also note this e-mail:

Show #15 of The Bat Segundo Show, a literary podcast featuring interviews with today's contemporary writers, is now up. But neither Jorge nor Bat Segundo are to be found. We're hoping that they will return for the next show. The producer explains the situation in the first minute of this week's show. The latest show runs 41 minutes and 11 seconds long and features Octavia Butler.

The main Segundo site can be found here:

To subscribe to the show with a podcatcher program (for later transfer to your iPod), copy and paste the following URL into your program:

Please note: You do not have to have an iPod to listen the show! If you go to the main Segundo site, you can save the MP3 to your lovely machine by clicking on the bat picture.

We have many more exciting shows in the works. Stay tuned for perverse authors, social theorists, esteemed historians, D-list
entertainers, and a few wiseacres. We're hoping to hit Show #20 by the end of the year, time permitting.

Here are the details for this week's show:

Octavia Butler

Condition of Mr. Segundo: Unknown. We can’t find him this week.

Subjects Discussed: Anne Rice, the advantages of writing vampire novels, research, the ambiguities of "
persistently repulsive" material, Fledgling as ripping vampire yarn and multilayered quest story, setting vampire rules, naming character names, the influence of the state of Washington upon atmosphere, Butler's editorial relationship with Seven Stories, Warner vs. Seven Stories, on being categorized as a science fiction author, auctorial labels, Butler's three primary audiences, Dorothy Allison, the influence of criticism, fiction as prophecy, Bush and global warming, education, Margaret Atwood, why Butler dislikes Survivor, the Parable books, why this is the first book in seven years, on writing a "continuous first draft," Butler's working methods, typewriters, technology, Alfred Hitchcock, cell phones, how Butler's computer is set up, T.C. Boyle, on being a baby boomer, being "comfortably asocial," inner introverts, polyamory, sexuality, the science aspect of science fiction, and science fiction vs. fantasy.

Community member Vince is a big fan of Octavia Butler's writing (and highlighted an interview with her last night) so I know he'll find the above interesting. If anyone else does as well, feel free to check it out.

Participating in yesterdays blog against racism day (in this community) were Rebecca, Wally, Mike & Betty and Cedric. You've got a range of angles so please check out their entries.

And please check out Betty's "Hell is your house-bound husband on house arrest with you serving the sentence" (Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man):

Hell is your house-bound husband only more so.

Following his
ludicrous claim that Bully Boy was entering his third term, Thomas Friedman is on vacation. That's the pretty way of saying it. The ugly truth is he was placed on vacation by Gail Collins who told him, "Friedman? Try Free-Bland! I can't take anymore of the hate mail, the yelling callers. You can't get your facts right? You're on vacation!"

"You can't bench me!" Thomas Friedman bellowed. But obviously
Gail Collins can.

What lit the fire under Ms. Nonsense & No Sensibility?

The e-mail address for this site is