Friday, October 10, 2008

Other Items

Can the New York Times set a standard on billing? They have another front page story with a byline that reads like a movie credits scroll. And online, they bill another way. These are the people (in reverse alphabetical order) who are responsible for the article: Alissa J. Rubin, Erica Goode and Stephen Farrell. According to the print version. The online version hauls Sam Dagher into the mix. Did he go on Red Bull runs for the three? How did he earn his 'hair by' credit?

In the paper, the 'byline' reads: "This article was reported by Alissa J. Rubin, Stephen Farrell and Erica Goode, and written by Ms. Rubin and Mr. Farrell." The online version's credit reads: "By STEPHEN FARRELL, ALISSA J. RUBIN, SAM DAGHER and ERICA GOODE." And we're not done with the credits. Online and in print, this is tacked on at the end of the article: "Sam Dagher and Anwar J. Ali contributed reporting."

"'As Fears Ease, Baghdad Sees Walls Tumble' By Snwar J. Ali, Sam Dagher, Stephen Farrell, Erica Goode and Alissa J. Rubin". See? It's not that difficult. Why the paper insists on these convoluted credits is anyone's guess but they better get their print version and their online version reconciled because they continue to sell their online archives as a 'plus' and gear it towards parents by telling them what a great help it would be to their children on research papers.

The article itself has many sections worth pondering. We'll emphasize the last section because it's the part that most likely won't be seen by many readers (it's a long article). Sawah, "Awakening" Councils, Sons Of Iraq (and Daughters too!). The Sunni thugs put on the payroll by the US and kept on the payroll by the US but, at the start of the month, some were turned over to the Iraqi payroll. A little over 50,000 of them were turned over but the US has guaranteed that even with that group, they will still pay for the "Awakening" members that the puppet government cannot find jobs for. Puppet of the occuptation Nouri al-Maliki does not trust them nor do most of the Shi'ite thugs now in charge. Gen David Petraeus has repeatedly cited the "Awakening" Councils as one of the reasons for 'progress' in Iraq.

Wednesday in the Green Zone US Maj Gen Jeffery Hammond declared:

Now, take for example, the transition or transfer of the Sons of Iraq to Government of Iraq control. Now, we have two phases to this plan. The first one is the transfer of the Sons of Iraq to the, to the Government of Iraq control, which will include the assumption and the payment of their salaries starting this month in October. We're working very closely with our Iraqi counterparts to make sure this works. The Government of Iraq has committed to accept responsibility for the Sons of Iraq and it's been mandated in the Prime Minister Order No. 118‑C, and we're going to be there to assist in the transfer. We spent the last few weeks working hand in hand with the Iraqi Security Forces, the IFCNR, our Iraqi partners and I'm confident ‑‑ I'm confident this is going to go well. But again, effective this month, the Government of Iraq will start paying the salaries for the Sons of Iraq.

Today the reporters note the tensions brewing among the "Awakeing"s including graffiti appearing that is "the motto of a feared paramilitary unit during Saddam Hussein's era": "Allah. Homeland. Salary" -- which "Awakening" Sgt. Alaa al-Janabi ("Dora Awakening") states is "our slogan." al-Janabi goes on to cite that the Iraqi government is not paying them enough money to live on and offer "We're not going to fight again. Unless they make us." Saleh al-Jubori ("a leader of the Awakening Council in Dora") states that "there is no trust between us and the National Police" and, "if the Awakening is let go, Dora will go back to worse than it was before. I hope you don't consider this a threat."

Gareth notes Robert Fisk's "Secrets of Iraq's death chamber: Prisoners are being summarily executed in the government's high-security detention centre in Baghdad" (Independent of London):

The Independent has learnt that secret executions are being carried out in the prisons run by Nouri al-Maliki's "democratic" government.
The hangings are carried out regularly – from a wooden gallows in a small, cramped cell – in Saddam Hussein's old intelligence headquarters at Kazimiyah. There is no public record of these killings in what is now called Baghdad's "high-security detention facility" but most of the victims – there have been hundreds since America introduced "democracy" to Iraq – are said to be insurgents, given the same summary justice they mete out to their own captives.
The secrets of Iraq's death chambers lie mostly hidden from foreign eyes but a few brave Western souls have come forward to tell of this prison horror. The accounts provide only a glimpse into the Iraqi story, at times tantalisingly cut short, at others gloomily predictable. Those who tell it are as depressed as they are filled with hopelessness.
"Most of the executions are of supposed insurgents of one kind or another," a Westerner who has seen the execution chamber at Kazimiyah told me. "But hanging isn't easy." As always, the devil is in the detail.
"There's a cell with a bar below the ceiling with a rope over it and a bench on which the victim stands with his hands tied," a former British official, told me last week. "I've been in the cell, though it was always empty. But not long before I visited, they'd taken this guy there to hang him. They made him stand on the bench, put the rope round his neck and pushed him off. But he jumped on to the floor. He could stand up. So they shortened the length of the rope and got him back on the bench and pushed him off again. It didn't work."

Turning to the US presidential race. Cynthia McKinney is the Green Party presidential candidate and Rosa Clemente is her running mate. Rosa has the following upcoming campaign events:

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 10th, 2008

12:00 NOON
YES! to international assistance and solidarity to Haiti, NO! to the military occupation of Haiti and the attacks on Haitian sovereignty!
The Brecht Forum, 451 West St. @ Bethune St. in West Village, between W.
12th St. and Bank St.
Tel. 212-242-4201

Rally at Madison Square Park at 5th Ave and 23rd St.

Evening Concert to Benefit the Prisoners@ the Knitting Factory @ 74 Lenard
St., NYC • 9 p.m. until . . .Featuring: Inmesyah Soul, Hassan Salaam,
X-Vandals, Emperor,
Rebel Diaz, The Wordstock Poetry Collective, Maroon Society,
Gist the Essence, Collective Flow, United Front


New York Univeristy (NYU)

Jericho 10th Anniversary Weekend of Resistance

Saturday, October 11, 2008 @ 12 Noon

Rally at the Harlem State Office Building
(Corner of 126th St. & A.C. Powell Blvd.)

March through Harlem @ 1 p.m.

Closing Rally in Morningside Park @ 2 p.m.
Between 112th & 114th near Morningside Ave. entrances

The Republican party nominee is Senator John McCain and Governor Sarah Palin is his running mate. Oklahoma community member Randall (who will be voting McCain-Palin) notes a video Matt Lira (campaign blogger) has posted to the McCain-Palin blog:

A Video From A Supporter

A supporter made this video on Governor Sarah Palin and uploaded it to YouTube. It is a very touching video, be sure to watch it today. Thank you to the person who made this wonderful video.

Tags: None

And Becky also an Oklahoma community member and also voting for McCain-Palin notes this from Team McCain:

McCain-Palin 2008 Launches New TV Ad: "Ambition"

ARLINGTON, VA -- Today, McCain-Palin 2008 released its latest television ad, entitled "Ambition." The ad highlights Barack Obama's blind ambition that led him to work with unrepentant domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, but when running for president, lie about his longstanding relationship and his bad judgment. Like Barack Obama, his Congressional liberal allies demonstrated their bad judgment in fighting for risky sub-prime loans and against more regulation. Today, millions of Americans are paying for the bad judgment Barack Obama and Congressional liberals demonstrated concerning housing policy. The ad will be televised nationally.


Script For "Ambition" (TV :30)

ANNCR: Obama's blind ambition.

When convenient, he worked with terrorist Bill Ayers.

When discovered, he lied.

Obama. Blind ambition. Bad judgment.

Congressional liberals fought for risky sub-prime loans.

Congressional liberals fought against more regulation.

Then, the housing market collapsed costing you billions.

In crisis, we need leadership, not bad judgment.

JOHN MCCAIN: I'm John McCain and I approve this message.

AD FACTS: Script For "Ambition" (TV :30)

ANNCR: Obama's blind ambition. When convenient, he worked with terrorist Bill Ayers.

Barack Obama's Relationship With Ayers "Went Much Deeper, Ran Much Longer And Was Much More Political Than Obama Said." CNN'S DREW GRIFFIN: "Barack Obama confirmed during a primary debate that he knew Ayers and when pressed, said they served on a charitable foundation board together. And Obama condemned Ayers support of violence. But the relationship between Obama and Ayers went much deeper, ran much longer, and was much more political than Obama said." (CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," 10/6/08)

Barack Obama First Met William Ayers In 1995 During His First State Senate Campaign, When Obama Held Event At Home Of Ayers And Wife Bernardine Dohrn, Which One Attendee Said Was Aimed At "Launching Him" In First Campaign For State Senate. "In 1995, State Senator Alice Palmer introduced her chosen successor, Barack Obama, to a few of the district's influential liberals at the home of two well known figures on the local left: William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn. While Ayers and Dohrn may be thought of in Hyde Park as local activists, they're better known nationally as two of the most notorious -- and unrepentant -- figures from the violent fringe of the 1960s anti-war movement. ... 'I can remember being one of a small group of people who came to Bill Ayers' house to learn that Alice Palmer was stepping down from the senate and running for Congress,' said Dr. Quentin Young, a prominent Chicago physician and advocate for single-payer health care, of the informal gathering at the home of Ayers and his wife, Dohrn. '[Palmer] identified [Obama] as her successor.' ... Dr. Young and another guest, Maria Warren, described it similarly: as an introduction to Hyde Park liberals of the handpicked successor to Palmer, a well-regarded figure on the left. 'When I first met Barack Obama, he was giving a standard, innocuous little talk in the living room of those two legends-in-their-own-minds, Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn,' Warren wrote on her blog in 2005. 'They were launching him -- introducing him to the Hyde Park community as the best thing since sliced bread.'" (Ben Smith, "Obama Once Visited '60s Radicals," The Politico, 1/22/08)

CNN: The Meeting Was Widely Considered As "Barack Obama's Political Coming Out Party And It Was Hosted By Bill Ayers." CNN'S DREW GRIFFIN: "Anderson, this meeting at Bill Ayers home has been classified in many different ways. What I can tell you from the two people who were actually there, is number one, former Senator Alice Palmer says she, in no way organized this meeting and she was invited and attended it briefly. And Doctor Quentin Young, a retired doctor, told us this indeed was Barack Obama's political coming out party and it was hosted by Bill Ayers." (CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," 10/6/08)

Barack Obama Led Education Foundation That "Poured More Than $100 Million Into The Hands Of Community Organizers And Radical Education Activists" And "Translated Mr. Ayers's Radicalism Into Practice." "Despite having authored two autobiographies, Barack Obama has never written about his most important executive experience. From 1995 to 1999, he led an education foundation called the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (CAC), and remained on the board until 2001. The group poured more than $100 million into the hands of community organizers and radical education activists. ... The CAC's agenda flowed from Mr. Ayers's educational philosophy, which called for infusing students and their parents with a radical political commitment, and which downplayed achievement tests in favor of activism. In the mid-1960s, Mr. Ayers taught at a radical alternative school, and served as a community organizer in Cleveland's ghetto. ... CAC translated Mr . Ayers's radicalism into practice. Instead of funding schools directly, it required schools to affiliate with 'external partners,' which actually got the money. Proposals from groups focused on math/science achievement were turned down. Instead CAC disbursed money through various far-left community organizers, such as the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (or Acorn)." (Stanley Kurtz, Op-Ed, "Obama and Ayers Pushed Radicalism On Schools," The Wall Street Journal, 9/23/08)

From March Of 1995 Until September Of 1997, Barack Obama And Ayers Attended At Least Seven Meetings Together Relating To The Chicago Annenberg Challenge. (Chicago Annenberg Challenge, Board Of Directors Meeting, Minutes Of The Board, 3/15/95, 3/31/95, 4/13/95, 6/5/95, 9/30/97; National Annenberg Challenge Evaluation Meeting, List Of Participants, 5/24/95; Chicago Annenberg Challenge, Chicago School Reform Collaborative Meeting, Minutes, 10/23/96)

In 1997, Barack Obama Praised Ayers' Book On The Juvenile Justice System. "The two men were involved in efforts to reform the city's education system. They appeared together on academic panels, including one organized by Michelle Obama to discuss the juvenile justice system, an area of mutual concern. Mr. Ayers's book on the subject won a rave review in The Chicago Tribune by Mr. Obama, who called it 'a searing and timely account.'" (Jo Becker and Christopher Drew, "Pragmatic Politics, Forged On The South Side," The New York Times, 5/11/08)

From 1999 To 2002, Barack Obama Served With Ayers On The Board Of Directors For Woods Fund Of Chicago. "[Ayers] served with [Obama] from 1999 to 2002 on the board of the Woods Fund, an anti-poverty group." (Timothy J. Burger, "Obama's Chicago Ties Might Fuel 'Republican Attack Machine'," Bloomberg, 2/15/08)

Bill Ayers Was A Leader Of "The Violent Left-Wing Activist Group The Weather Underground." "Senator Obama's ties to a former leader of the violent left-wing activist group the Weather Underground are drawing new scrutiny as he battles Senator Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination." (Russell Berman, "Obama's Ties to Left Come Under Scrutiny," The New York Sun, 2/19/08)

In The 1970s, Weather Underground Bombed The Capitol And The Pentagon. "As an Illinois state senator in 2001, Mr. Obama accepted a $200 contribution from William Ayers, a founding member of the group that bombed the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon during the 1970s." (Russell Berman, "Obama's Ties to Left Come Under Scrutiny," The New York Sun, 2/19/08)

In His Book, Bill Ayers Writes About Participating In The Bombings Of The Capitol And Pentagon. "Now he has written a book, 'Fugitive Days' (Beacon Press, September). Mr. Ayers, who is 56, calls it a memoir, somewhat coyly perhaps, since he also says some of it is fiction. He writes that he participated in the bombings of New York City Police Headquarters in 1970, of the Capitol building in 1971, the Pentagon in 1972." (Dinitia Smith, "No Regrets For A Love Of Explosives," The New York Times, 9/11/01)

In The September 11, 2001 New York Times, Ayers Was Quoted Saying "I Don't Regret Setting Bombs ... I Feel We Didn't Do Enough." "'I don't regret setting bombs,' Bill Ayers said. 'I feel we didn't do enough.' Mr. Ayers, who spent the 1970's as a fugitive in the Weather Underground, was sitting in the kitchen of his big turn-of-the-19th-century stone house in the Hyde Park district of Chicago." (Dinitia Smith, "No Regrets For A Love Of Explosives," The New York Times, 9/11/01)

ANNCR: When discovered, he lied. Obama. Blind ambition. Bad judgment.

Barack Obama On Bill Ayers At Democratic Debate: "This Is A Guy Who Lives In My Neighborhood." "This is a guy who lives in my neighborhood, who's a professor of English in Chicago, who I know and who I have not received some official endorsement from. He's not somebody who I exchange ideas from on a regular basis." (Sen. Barack Obama, ABC Democratic Presidential Debate, Philadelphia, PA, 4/16/08)

Barack Obama's Relationship With Ayers "Went Much Deeper, Ran Much Longer And Was Much More Political Than Obama Said." CNN'S DREW GRIFFIN: "Barack Obama confirmed during a primary debate that he knew Ayers and when pressed, said they served on a charitable foundation board together. And Obama condemned Ayers support of violence. But the relationship between Obama and Ayers went much deeper, ran much longer, and was much more political than Obama said." (CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," 10/6/08)

ANNCR: Congressional liberals fought for risky sub-prime loans. Congressional liberals fought against more regulation. Then, the housing market collapsed costing you billions. In crisis, we need leadership, not bad judgment. JOHN MCCAIN: I'm John McCain and I approve this message.

The Community Reinvestment Act, Passed By A Democrat Congress And Enacted Under Carter, "Pushed Banks Into Making More Home Loans To Those With Low And Moderate Incomes - And Disproportionately Risky Credit." "[A]ll along, democrats have been particularly supportive of the Community Reinvestment Act, which pushed banks into making more home loans to those with low and moderate incomes - and disproportionately risky credit." (Editorial, "The Wrong Rx For Wall St.," The New York Post, 9/18/08)

Many Financial Experts Said The Groundwork For The Crisis Was Laid Decades Ago With The 1977 Community Reinvestment Act. "Though the roots of today's crisis began with the recent collapse of the subprime lending market, many financial experts said, some economists added that the groundwork was laid decades ago. The promotion of homeownership as a national policy during the days of Franklin D. Roosevelt, for example, as well as such legislation as the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act - encouraging banks to meet credit needs in low- and moderate-income communities - helped set the stage, they said." (Keiko Morris, "Wall Street Turmoil: Greed Wasn't Good, The Economists Say," [New York] Newsday, 9/16/08)

"But The Fact Is, President Bush In 2003 Tried Desperately To Stop Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac From Metastasizing Into The Problem They Have Since Become. Here's The Lead Of A New York Times Story On Sept. 11, 2003: 'The Bush Administration Today Recommended The Most Significant Regulatory Overhaul In The Housing Finance Industry Since The Savings And Loan Crisis A Decade Ago.' Bush Tried To Act. Who Stopped Him? Congress, Especially Democrats With Their Deep Financial And Patronage Ties To The Two Government-Sponsored Enterprises, Fannie And Freddie." (Terry Jones, "Congress Lies Low To Avoid Bailout Blame," Investor's Business Daily, 9/18/08)

"The Powerhouse Democratic Overseers Of The Banking Committees -- Rep. Barney Frank, Sen. Christopher Dodd And Sen. Chuck Schumer -- Protected Fannie And Freddie." (Robert Novak, Op-Ed, "Crony Image Dogs Paulson's Rescue Effort," Chicago Sun-Times, 7/17/08)

Sen. Dodd, Sen. Kerry, And Sen. Clinton -- All Top Recipients Of Fannie And Freddie Contributions -- Actively Opposed Reform Measures And Weakened Existing Regulations. "During this period, Sen. Richard Shelby led a small group of legislators favoring reform, including fellow Republican Sens. John Sununu, Chuck Hagel and Elizabeth Dole. Meanwhile, Dodd -- who along with Democratic Sens. John Kerry, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were the top four recipients of Fannie and Freddie campaign contributions from 1988 to 2008 -- actively opposed such measures and further weakened existing regulation." (Al Hubbard and Noam Neusner, Op-Ed, "Where Was Sen. Dodd?" The Washington Post, 9/12/08)

Sen. Dodd Called The President's Suggestions For Regulations "Inane" And Recommended The President "Immediately Reconsider His Ill-Advised" Proposals. "As recently as last summer, when housing prices had clearly peaked and the mortgage market had started to seize up, Dodd called on Bush to 'immediately reconsider his ill-advised' reform proposals. Frank, now chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, said that the president's suggestion for a strong, independent regulator of Fannie and Freddie was 'inane.'" (Al Hubbard and Noam Neusner, Op-Ed, "Where Was Sen. Dodd?" The Washington Post, 9/12/08)

In September 2007, Barack Obama Called Subprime Lending "A Good Idea." OBAMA: "Subprime lending started off as a good idea - helping Americans buy homes who couldn't previously afford to." (Barack Obama, "Obama Calls For Greater Openness And Transparency On Wall Street," Press Release, 9/17/07)

"[C]ongress ... Gave Final Approval To What May Be The Biggest Government Bailout In American History, Authorizing The Bush Administration To Spend $700 Billion To Try To Thaw Frozen Credit Markets And Prevent A Deep Recession." (Lori Montgomery and Paul Kane, "Bush Enacts Historic Financial Rescue," The Washington Post, 10/4/08)

Becky and Randall are among the Oklahoma community members who participated in Gina and Krista's roundtable last night for the gina & krista round-robin. They explain their reasons for endorsing McCain-Palin. That is a decision on the part of Oklahoma community members and it is a decision that is respected by all community members regardless of where we live.

Community members not in Oklahoma have endorsed the independent presidential campaign of Ralph Nader. Matt Gonzalez is Nader's running mate. Lewis notes this on a Sunday Nader event:

Fairfax, VA: Ralph Nader Sunday, Oct 12 at George Mason University

Thursday, October 9, 2008 at 12:00:00 AM


News Advisory
Contact: Ryan Mehta, 408-348-0681, (National HQ)


WHO: Ralph Nader

WHAT: Press Conference and Rally

WHEN: Sunday, October 12 Press Conference at 5:00pm, Rally at 5:30pm

WHERE: Meeting Room 7 in the Student Union II and the ballroom in the same building at George Mason University

On Sunday, October 12 at 5:00pm, presidential candidate Ralph Nader will hold a press conference. Following the press conference he will hold a rally at 5:30pm. He will speak about the economic giveaway, single-payer health care, the Iraq War, the environment, and the state of the Presidential debates from which he was excluded.

The Nader/Gonzalez campaign will expose the unjust, restrictive, and undemocratic Commission on Presidential Debates. The CPD, a corporation headed since its inception by two former chairs of the Democratic and Republican parties, shuts third party candidates away from public view, maintaining a stranglehold on the two party system and stifling the political conversation in this country.

About Ralph Nader
Attorney, author, and consumer advocate Ralph Nader has been named by Time Magazine one of the "100 Most Influential Americans in the 20th Century." For more than four decades he has exposed problems and organized millions of citizens into more than 100 public interest groups advocating solutions. He led the movement to establish the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and was instrumental in enacting the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Motor Vehicle Safety Act, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and countless other pieces of important consumer legislation. Because of Ralph Nader we drive safer cars, eat healthier food, breathe better air, drink cleaner water, and work in safer environments. Nader graduated from Princeton University and received an LL.B from Harvard Law School.

About Matt Gonzalez
Matt Gonzalez was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 2000 representing San Francisco's fifth council district. From 2003 to 2005, he served as Board of Supervisors President. A former public defender, Gonzalez is managing partner of Gonzalez & Leigh, a 7-attorney practice in San Francisco that represents individuals and organizations in mediation, arbitration, and administrative proceedings before state and federal regulatory bodies. Gonzalez graduated from Columbia University and received a JD from Stanford Law School.

About the Nader/Gonzalez Campaign
The Nader/Gonzalez independent presidential candidacy will be on the ballot in 45 states, is polling at 5-6 percent nationally, and a new Time/CNN poll shows Ralph Nader polling 8 percent in New Mexico, 7 percent in Colorado, 7 percent in Pennsylvania, and 6 percent in Nevada -- all key battleground states.

For more information on the Nader/Gonzalez campaign, visit:



TV notes. PBS programs begin airing tonight in some markets, check local listings. NOW on PBS notes:

With gas prices spiking and home values crumbling, the American dream of commuting to work from the fringes of suburbia has become an American nightmare. Many are facing a hard choice: Paying for gas or paying the mortgage. How did it come to this? It's not just about America's financial crisis; it's also about big problems with our national infrastructure. Overstressed highways and too few public transportation options are wreaking havoc on people's lives and hitting the brakes on our already-stretched economy.
This week, NOW on PBS takes a close-up look at our inadequate transportation network and visits some people paying a high price--in both dollars and quality of life--just to get to work. Do we have the means to modernize both our infrastructure and our lifestyles?
This is the first installment in "Blueprint America," a year-long, PBS-wide series focusing on the nation's infrastructure. "Blueprint America" is an initiative of Thirteen/WNET.

PBS' Washington Week finds Gwen sitting down with Washington Post's Dan Balz, National Journal's James Barnes, Wall St. Journal's David Wessel and mystery guest Karen Tumulty (Time magazine) who may or may not do her Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte impersonation.

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