Archive 1, 2008

Shows Available from Pirate Television

Pirate Television is a weekly 58 min Public Access Television program broadcast in Seattle Washington USA.  Pirate TV challenges the Media Blockade by bringing you alternative information and independent programming that is unavailable on the Corporate Sponsor-Ship.  The show features talks, interviews and documentaries.

Some of the material seen on Pirate TV is obtained from other sources but most of it is locally produced and owned by us.  We are offering to sell copies of this material to support the operation.  If you would like to support the Pirate Television project you can obtain a copy of any of these tapes for a $20 donation (includes postage).  To obtain videotapes or DVDs, contact us first by email:


We like to expand Pirate Television to other broadcast venues.  If you would like to get on the Pirate Television schedule notification list-serve, or if you have questions, drop us a line.

DVDs of most of the recent Pirate TV shows are available.

This is a list of the material that was produced by us and does not include all the fantastic documentaries and other materials that we have broadcast.  Tapes of the actual event footage not edited are also available in most cases but not in DVD format.  If you are interested in a complete list of the actual shows for purposes of broadcast on other television stations, please contact us.  This material is also available in audio form for broadcast on the radio. 

Programs are listed in reverse chronological order.

[List 8]  January 1st 2008 to Dec. 22nd 2008

Deborah Nelson- The War Behind Me,
Monday 12/22/08 8-9pm PST
Deborah Nelson- The War Behind Me. Recorded 12/6/08

When the Abu Ghraib scandal broke in 2003, the nation was shocked and many were forced to reconsider their view of America as the righteous freedom fighter.  But this was seen by a large part of the populous as an isolated incident perpetrated by a small group of rogue soldiers.  Unfortunately this shows that we have learned nothing from our own not-too-long ago past.

According to a new book by Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Deborah Nelson, large scale cover-ups of U.S. war crimes are a part of our history.  In The War Behind Me: Vietnam Veterans Confront the Truth about U.S. War Crimes (Basic Books; Hardcover; Pub date: November 2008) Nelson reveals for the first time a massive cover-up of Vietnam war crimes that have remained hidden for more than thirty years. 

In 2005, Nelson and military historian Nicholas Turse came upon a little-known archive that represents the largest compilation of U.S. war-crime reports from Vietnam to ever surface.  The files contain reports of more than 300 confirmed atrocities, and 500 other cases that the Army either couldn't prove or didn't investigate.  Startlingly, no one was notified that any investigations were opened much less that their accounts were proven. Nelson and Turse tracked down those were involved, both accusers and accused, to uncover their stories and reveal some of the most awful secrets of the Vietnam War.

In this talk we discuss:

* Evidence from both files and on-the-ground reporting that U.S. forces committed massacres more often than military leaders have acknowledged publicly, including three or possibly four previously unreported massacres of unarmed civilians near a combat base in central Vietnam.  The Army orchestrated a cover up, even after investigators confirmed the attacks.

* Her uncovering of reports that water-boarding and electric shock was used by interrogators on detainees, including innocent civilians at a major base in central Vietnam.  An Army investigation led to confessions by many of the suspects, but once again the ugly facts were covered up and no one was prosecuted.

* The question of whether atrocities are inevitable in war or whether they can be prevented.  Some prominent military leaders believe they are unavoidable in messy counter-insurgency operations, making wars like Vietnam and Iraq nearly impossible to win-and harmful to America's moral standing.

What Nelson has discovered about the nature of the deceit tells us much about the way our government and military can operate and suggests that much may later be revealed about current actions in Iraq.  -Synopsis from Basic Books

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

Thorne Anderson and Kael Alford- Unembedded, Monday 12/8-15/08 8-9pm PST

Unembedded: Four Independent Photojournalists on the War in Iraq. Recorded 10/12/08
Parts 1&2
In this talk Anderson and Alford tell the stories about the powerful and visually stunning photographs captured by them and two of their fellow independent journalists working outside the U.S. military embedding program in Iraq from 2003-2005 and give an excellent overview of the state of US media.   See: www.unembedded.net.  The photographs were taken at great personal risk as these journalists attempted to go around the US government's information war on the US public's First Amendment right to know about the policies being carried out in their name and with their money.  As we have seen, journalists who wish to remain independent of the US corporate propaganda machine face great danger from both sides of the conflict including deliberate targeting by US forces as well as illegal arrest and indefinite detention.

This type of thought control is not restricted to foreign war zones.  The same fascist power structure is waging a brutal war for survival against the growing democracy movement and independent media within the United States.  The ugly face of this war was laid bare for all to see last summer in the systematic use of brutal police state tactics employed outside the Republican and Democratic conventions and the illegal attacks on journalists.   We are going to take a close look at this in:

Ground Noise and Static

Ground Noise and Static- Report on the protests at the DNC & RNC 2008

At the '04 Republican convention in New York the police who had been illegally spying on protest groups for a year, assaulted demonstrators indiscriminately with “non lethal” weapons, projectiles and truncheons, conducted indiscriminate mass sweeps, arresting almost 2000 people consisting of protesters and bystanders alike.  The protesters who were only asserting their right to protest peacefully were incarcerated in a makeshift [toxic] jail and illegally detained to keep them away from the convention center.  They then charged many of them with serious trumped up charges, “testi-lied” in court and even doctored evidence -all of which was exposed by videotape gathered from protesters, legal observers and independent media which caused almost all of the charges to be thrown out of court and cost the city 8.2 million.  Sound familiar?  To those of us who participated in the WTO protests in Seattle it was nothing new.

The difference is the scale of the mass arrests and the ends to which the power structure will go to preserve the status quo.  They are terrified because they know that mass action works.  In fact, historically it's the only thing that ever has.  The WTO and the economic paradigm it represents will never recover from the mortal wounds inflicted here in Seattle.  So the power structure fearing that the “people are coming” have apparently decided to discard even the pretense of the rule of law.   They were ready for last summer's political conventions, once again infiltrating and illegally spying on activists a year in advance, conducting mass arrests with massive violence, but this time the city of St. Paul, the hosts of the RNC came armed with a $10 million "police liability" insurance policy and a host of recently enacted “anti terrorism laws”. 

Apparently decisions have been made higher on the food chain to dispense with the First Amendment altogether.   Not only is your right to peaceably assemble, or petition the government for a redress of grievances now little more than a sham but so is your freedom to know about it.  With last summer's police actions at the RNC in St. Paul, the government’s information war came home with full force as we saw an attack on journalists that is unprecedented in US history.  This began with preemptive raids on I-Witness Video.  The group had been instrumental in exposing police misconduct and outright perjury by police during the 2004 RNC.  Many people were shocked by the U-Tube video of the brutal arrest of Amy Goodman in St. Paul.  In all some 46 journalists were arrested, many of whom were brutalized.  It seems that the city thought that if there were no pictures or video that they could lie all they wanted in court and get away with it.  This is ludicrous if you think about it because just about anybody can take pictures and video with their cell phones these days.  

Two of the videographers arrested were from Pepperspray Productions.  The Seattle based collective produces Indy Media Presents a weekly public access show that runs on SCAN Thursdays at 8:30pm and 20 other stations nationwide.  With the help of the  Vancouver based Submedia.tv production company they were able to document all of this in what they are calling a “tactical film”: Ground Noise and Static- Report on the protests at the DNC & RNC 2008.  It’s guerrilla television at its best.

Susan Jacoby: The Age of American Unreason, Monday 11/24/08 8-9 PM PST

 Susan Jacoby: The Age of American Unreason. Recorded 4/23/08
Stupid people are dangerous.  If it wasn’t clear before, it should be by now.  The Republicans have stolen two presidential elections, illegally invaded two countries, mired us in endless pointless occupations, looted the treasury, bankrupted the country, trashed the constitution, destroyed our reputation, lied endlessly and incessantly, made a mockery of the rule of law committing mass murder, systematic torture, mass extralegal detention, eavesdropping on everybody.  They have run a once great country like it was a Banana Republic, and brought us to the brink of global economic and environmental collapse.  Yet although the Electoral College tally turned out to be a landslide, the actual popular vote give or take a few due to Republican vote rigging was only 52 to 46 per cent.   I’m concerned about that 46% who voted for the senile depraved multi-millionaire who couldn’t remember how many houses he owns and the venil zealot who thinks Africa is a country.  How is that possible?  Are they “low information voters”?  What’s that mean anyway –shit for brains?

Clearly the US public is dumb and getting dumber.  Susan Jacoby rounds up the usual suspects: “… disdain for logic and evidence is fostered by the infotainment media from television to the Web; aggressive anti-rational religious fundamentalism; poor public education; the intense politicization of intellectuals themselves; and—above all—a lazy and credulous public increasingly unwilling or unable to distinguish between fact and opinion.”  I asked Susan if this dumbing down process was being “done to us” or the result of a deliberate agenda by someone.  I’m not sure she understood what I was getting at but she said they don’t have to because clearly, we are doing it to ourselves.  She’s right but you only have to ask yourself who benefits from an uninformed ignorant, distracted public mired in superstition and irrational beliefs to realize that this is but a small piece of the elephant.

Corporate Media makes you stupid.  It’s not an accident.  Pirate TV viewers, need I say more?  And why should any of us be polite about it: Fundamentalist religion makes you dumb as doggy do-do and you have to be unduly ignorant [or very young] to fall for it in the first place.  That’s why as Susan pointed out, it flourishes in those areas of the country where public education and poverty is the worst.  Who are the ones who say they don’t believe in supporting public education?  Who are the ones who depend on the religious nuts to get elected?  The career of Ralph Reed [of Christian Coalition fame] tells all.  It was all a scam to sucker some dumb asses -so scum bags could get power -so they could steal.  It had nothing to do with religion at all.  The rise of the religious “riche” was a political movement instigated as part of a systematic plan to bring fascism to the United States much the same as the “Christian” movement that was the Nazi Party.

It started with the campaign that brought Ronald Reagan to power.  Remember?  -The “stealth candidates”, the systematic recruiting, funding, and training of wackos [like Sarah Palin today] to run for office while fraudulently misrepresenting their true agenda.  Remember?  That was right when the mega-churches and television ministries suddenly appeared, the fliers distributed in church telling the zombies who to vote for, the direct mailing campaigns that identified and categorized wedge issue voters for future fleecing that made people like Ralph Reed rich.  And there were other mass cultists like Jim Jones, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Moonies.  Where did all this cult crap come from?  Who funded the creation of all these mega churches and TV ministries?  Why is it that a fine upstanding former CIA Director like George Bush Sr. could be so tight with the bizarre cult leader Sun Myung Moon?   How could somebody like that be allowed to gain so much power in the Republican Party, the media, and government?  Could it be because he was KCIA [Korean CIA, read CIA –same thing]?  There is something missing here.  -Perhaps some secret history?

It all goes back to the CIA’s MK-ULTRA mind control program.  Basically, the CIA hired some of the best psychiatric minds in world [and not a few hacks] to study the human mind for 20 years and find out the best ways to torture, brainwash, develop “Manchurian Candidates”, create psychological and chemical weapons, and otherwise break down the human personality and control people.  They tried every psychoactive drug known to man along with electro-shock, sensory deprivation ...whatever and after twenty years they realized that the best mind control technique ever invented was RELIGION.   After MK-ULTRA and other CIA outrages were exposed in the Church and Pike Committee hearings, Jimmy Carter finally cleaned house firing almost 200 CIA operatives.  Many of these took their planes, boats and other assets and went into business for themselves [sic] but historically CIA types have not reacted kindly to being sacked.  With the help of other powerful extreme right wing forces they organized a coup and took Carter out at the very next opportunity installing their guy George Bush and the “useful idiot”.  Part of the way they did this was by instigating and funding a fundamentalist “revival”.  They set up people like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson to be their front men.  This was only a small part of it of course; they were funding think tanks, investing in media, etc., and let’s not forget the “October Surprise” but they couldn’t have won without the brainwashed zombies.  The best thing I’ve seen on this is a two hour show produced by Alternative Views called “Holy Terror”.  I’ve been wanting to show this again for years but I’m waiting to see if I can get a good copy.  Your home work this week, Pirate viewers, [if you want extra credit] is to watch Holy Terror.  It provides some needed background for this week’s show.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

The Loss of Liberty, Monday 11/17/08 8-9pm PST

The Loss of Liberty

Over the years I have gone out of my way to counter the almost total information blackout on US television and corporate media in general that would allow a fair assessment of the US client state relationship with Israel.  In this interest I sponsored the “Palestinian Perspective” film series on SCAN.  Unfortunately this series ran very early in the morning and not many of these films were rebroadcast during the day.  Many of the most extraordinary of these films such as the BBC documentary “The Killing Zone”, and some of the ones from the Media Education Foundation such as, “Hijacking Catastrophe” and “Peace, Propaganda & the Promised Land” as well as the John Pilger film: "Palestine is Still the Issue" had already been broadcast on Pirate TV over the years.  I have sent the box of films back to the Global Information Services and am happy to discover that several of them can now be viewed on their website.  Before I did that I loaded a couple more on my hard drive.  One of these is a shocking documentary “The Loss of Liberty”.

The Israeli war machine could not be possible without massive infusions of capital and hardware from US taxpayers.  Most of the money used to build the illegal settlements that encompass the ever increasing confiscation of land from what is left of historic Palestine is also funded by you and me.  However, the foreign policy agenda of Israel and the US don’t always coincide.  One instance of this was in 1967 when Israel launched the attack on it’s neighbors known as the “Six-Day War”.  So viscous were the war crimes committed in this illegal attack and possibly unsure of the total support of their chief weapon suppliers [the US Congress] if they knew the extent of the secret operations that they deliberately attacked and tried to sink a US intelligence ship –the USS Liberty.  The Liberty was actually sent to monitor Soviet activities in the area and had no Hebrew translators onboard.  I wonder how many of the bombs, torpedoes, and napalm munitions that were used on our sailors were made in the US or paid for with our tax money.

So important is the Israeli/US client state relationship to the US empire that the existence and details of this attack were kept from the US public for 36 years.  Over two thirds of the US seamen aboard this vessel where killed or wounded and the ones who survived were ordered to keep silent under threat of severe punishment.  Not until 2002 with the release of Tito Howard’s film did the crewmen finally get the chance to tell what really happened.  A top Navy attorney finally admitted in 2003 that the Johnson White House had ordered the U.S. military investigation to “conclude that the attack was a case of ‘mistaken identity’ despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary… He said he was prompted to come forward following the publication of the recent book “The Liberty Incident” which concluded the attack was an accident.” –source Democracy Now October 27, 2003.


Jeff Halper: Israel/Palestine From Temporary Occupation to Permanent Warehousing, Special Web Exclusive
Jeff Halper: Israel/Palestine From Temporary Occupation to Permanent Warehousing. Recorded 10/6/08

The last time I had Jeff Halper on Pirate TV four years ago, it showed on Free Speech TV and brought overwhelming positive responses from all over the country, largely from people of Jewish heritage.   The courageous and increasingly powerful peace movement that exists within the Jewish community both here and in Israel is something you would never know about if you got your information from the corporate propaganda machine in the United States.  Jeff Halper is one of the most outspoken leaders of this movement within Israel.  He recently returned from his participation in the “Break the Siege” Gaza aid flotilla and subsequent arrest by Israeli authorities.  In this program, he tells the story of the flotilla action from an inside perspective.

The organizers renamed one of the boats that they purchased for the action the “Liberty” in honor if the sailors who were victims of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty. Unfortunately I am unable to broadcast his talk and slideshow on television for two reasons.  One is that he talked far too long to make it feasible to edit down to 58 minutes, the other is that Jeff was talking in the dark most of the time while he was showing his slide show and video cameras don’t work so good in the dark.  I was able with a little doctoring to at least bring out an image of him but it’s not anywhere near television quality.  However, what he has to say is invaluable.  I used a key segment of his talk to fill in the remaining minutes of the “Loss of Liberty” broadcast where he quotes from Naomi Klein’s book “The Shock Doctrine”.  He explains how in the Neo-con economic scenario 60% becomes “excess population”.  Policy planners have contracted US and Israeli corporations to create the first experiment in the interning of massive populations in open air prisons.  This is what the “the wall” is all about.  Be looking for a wall in your future sometime soon.

Jeff Halper is an Israeli peace activist and documentary producer.  He is the Coordinator of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) and a Professor of Anthropology at Ben Gurion University.  He has lived in Israel since 1973.  Jeff has researched and written extensively on Israeli society and is the author of the book Between Redemption and Revival: the Jewish Yishuv in Jerusalem in the nineteenth century, Westview, 1991 and most recently, An Israeli in Palestine: Resisting Dispossession, Redeeming Israel, Pluto Press, 2008.  He has been active in the Israeli peace movement for many years.  As the Coordinator of ICAHD, he has forged a new mode of Israeli peace activity based on non-violent direct action and civil disobedience to the Israeli Occupation authorities and in close cooperation with Palestinian organizations.

Dr. Les Roberts- The Iraqi Civilian Death Count and the US Press, Monday 11/10/08 8-9pm PST

Dr. Less Roberts- The Iraqi Civilian Death Count and the US Press. Recorded 10/22/08

When Columbia University epidemiologist Les Roberts published his first study of excess deaths caused by the US war on Iraq in the British medical journal Lancet, he was viscously attacked by the Bush administration.   Released just before the 2004 election, the study conservatively estimated the toll at over a hundred thousand.  I say conservative because the estimate did not include Fallujah where the US attack is estimated to have decimated a quarter of the population of that city.  A more recent Lancet study published by Roberts last year put the estimate at 650,000 to over a million.  The study conducted by Roberts and his team was assisted by a prominent physician, Dr. Riyadh Lafta.  Lafta was denied a visa by the US when he was scheduled to attend a medical conference at the University of Washington in April of 2007 and blocked by the British to travel to Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, B.C.  

In this talk Dr. Roberts turns his analytic mind to a breakdown of the scientific methods used to conduct the survey and a systematic study of the reaction of the US corporate media.

Ralph Nader- The Importance of Third Party Politics, Monday 11/10/08 Noon-1pm PST

Ralph Nader- The Importance of Third Party Politics.  Recorded 10/21/08
Ralph Nader had this to say about the harm that has been caused by the monopolization of power by the two corporatist parties in the United States:

“Starting in 1946 people in Western Europe through their trade unions, through cooperatives, through their multiparty system –not a two party duopoly, multiparty system with proportional representation allowing coalitions to have some members of parliament, not just one or two dominant parties- they demanded -the people demanded and received by law… for all the people, universal health insurance, decent wages, decent pensions, decent public transit, well maintained parks, 4 weeks paid vacation, university free tuition, paid maternity leave, decent day care, and paid family sick leave.  Sixty three years later in the land of the free, home of the brave we don’t have these basic social benefits of a highly productive society.  For sixty three years the Republican and Democratic Parties failed to deliver.  For 63 years hundreds of thousands of Americans have died because they can’t afford health insurance.  Millions have become sick and stay sick and don’t have their injuries treated because they can’t afford health insurance.  Tens of millions of Americans live in poverty, tens of millions of Americans have job anxiety, they don’t have time for the family –their one and a half jobs at Wall-mart wages, their commuting back and forth, rushing to pick up the kids at $500 a month day care.  Is this the way to live?  For 63 years the Republicans and Democrats didn’t deliver in the 40s or 50s or 60’s or 70s of 80s or 90s or this decade.  How many more decades?  How many more years are we going to give them so they can continue not delivering because they have turned our government over to a government of the Exxons, by the General Motors, for the Duponts?  A government dominated by corporate power, agency by department, department by agency…”    

The infuriating thing for progressive Democrats is that they know he’s right.  Judging by Obama’s ‘big cave’ on telecom immunity and the Democrat’s support of the massive Wall Street rip-off -the biggest transfer of wealth in history, if you are looking for a big change, even if the Democrats sweep the House and Senate I’m afraid you are cruising for another bruising.  All the third party candidates were against the bail out.  Just think how different things could have been if other voices had been allowed to participate in the debates, for instance.  Obama and McCain would have had to address real issues like the ones Nader spoke about in this talk. This is one reason why third parties are important and as Ralph points out ¾ of the population wanted him and the other 3rd party candidates to participate.

Historically political innovation has come from third parties and migrated into the dominant parties as social movements forced change.  As Ralph correctly points out, our country has been in a stagnant corporate backwater for over half a century.  How do we get out of it?  How do we achieve the sovereignty of the people as he puts it?  Ralph’s solution is to vote for him in those states like Washington where Obama is leading by a comfortable margin and try to get enough votes to force his way into the debates next time.  Polls show him running a clear 3rd with 6% nationally.  Nader says that Congress is the most powerful branch of government.  To get control of Congress he proposes organizing what he calls Congress Action Groups in each congressional district made up of 2000 progressive activists each committed to a certain number of hours and raising enough money for 3 or 4 full time staff.   By targeting each specific Congressman and zeroing in on issues like those mentioned above which they know are supported by the overwhelming majority of their constituents, he says that we could win in 18 months.  No doubt about it, regime change is going to take a lot more than voting.

  Web Exclusive:
Reuven Carlyle and John Burbank Debate Reuven Carlyle and John Burbank Debate 2
5/8/08                        6/25/08
36th  Legislative District Candidate Debates

I  was  asked to  videotape  these  debates  between  Reuven  Carlyle and  John  Burbank,  two Democrats running to represent the 36th Legislative District in the Washington State Legislature.   I have posted the debates here as a service to the voters of the 36th district.

Rick Steves- Uncovering Iran, Monday 10/27/08 Noon-1pm PST

Rick Steves- Uncovering Iran.  Recorded 10/14/08

Local activist Dick Blakney of the United Nations Association and the Network Opposing War with Iran conspired with social activist and host of public television’s Rick Steves’ Europe to send a film crew to Iran to humanize the next population slated for extermination –pardon me, liberation by US war planners.  Just back from the ten-day trip, Rick Steves presents a slide-show lecture about his experience.  Steves’ Iran TV special is slated for broadcast on PBS in Jan. 2009.  Hopefully, Iran will still be there.

Antonia Juhasz- The Tyranny of Oil, Monday 10/27/08 8-9pm PST

Antonia Juhasz: The Tyranny of Oil.  Recorded 10/21/08

A fellow with the only progressive think tank –The Institute for Policy Studies as well as Oil Change International, Antonia Juhasz has become known as a leading expert on international trade and finance.  While doing research for her recent book, The Bush Agenda, she was looking into how a handful of powerful corporations basically run foreign policy in the banana republic we call the Untied States for their own enrichment.  These would be Halliburton, Bechtel, Lockheed Martin, and Chevron –the corporations making the biggest killing.  This research led her to take a closer look at the role of oil companies as actors or ‘policy stakeholders’ as she puts it.  She says that very little has been written about oil company influence on public policy from a critical standpoint since Anthony Sampson wrote The Seven Sisters in 1975.  And this includes not just who we target for ‘liberation’ but how the government makes decisions about climate change, the economy, trade, etc.  It’s about time.  Seeing how the oil companies are driving policy, we may be curious as to where they are taking us.  The full title of Antonia’s new book is: The Tyranny of Oil: the World’s Most Powerful Industry, and What We Must Do To Stop It.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books and Seattle Town Hall

Kathy Kelly- Living the Work and Walking the Talk of Nonviolence, Monday 10/20/08 Noon to 1pm PST

Kathy Kelly- Living the Work and Walking the Talk of Nonviolence.  Recorded 9/18/08

Nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 3 times, Co-founder of Voices in the Wilderness, and Co-Coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, Kathy Kelly is back on Pirate TV with a speech she gave last month here in Seattle as a benefit for the Nonviolent Peace Force and Voices for Creative Nonviolence.  A political activist since 1953, the former high school English teacher talked about her life of nonviolent resistance.  In 1990 she helped carry out the first action against the School of the Americas participating in a month long fast with Fr. Roy Bourgeois and 8 others at Ft. Benning in Georgia.  This movement later became known as the SOA Watch.

In 1992 she was with a contingent of peace activists who camped out on the border of Iraq and Kuwait to try to stop the first Gulf War and beginning in 1995 she publicly broke the sanctions 24 times bringing aid to the victims of the embargo and bearing witness to the suffering which the U.S./U.N.-imposed sanctions had visited upon the people—especially the children—of Iraq.  In 2003 she returned to Iraq to once again try to stop another US attack and was in Baghdad for the ‘shock and awe’ bombardment.

She has participated in plowshares actions, trespassed, violated sanctions distributing toys and medicine to Iraqi children, refused to pay war taxes, marched across the country, and occupied congressional offices.  For courageous acts of peace such as these she has been arrested, physically and verbally abused, jailed, sentenced to prison, had her wages garnished, and fined thousands of dollars by the federal government –which she hasn’t paid.  In 2005 she published a book about her experiences in Iraq: Other Lands Have Dreams: From Baghdad to Pekin Prison.  I was so moved by this passionate speech that I was having a hard time fighting back tears.

Tariq Ali- The Duel, Monday 10/20/08 8-9pm PST

The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power. Recorded 9/24/08

This will be the third time we’ve had Tariq Ali on Pirate Television.  Last time I was making a big deal about him being the inspiration for the Rolling Stones song- Street Fighting Man.  And after all he did name one of his books Street-fighting Years.  To correct the record, it appears now that this may be a myth.  What’s not a myth is that Tariq is one of those larger than life figures of whom it is not hard to see why he could be the inspirer of myths.  He seems to have been in the middle of everything.  Becoming involved in student activism at Oxford in the 60’s, he founded the Vietnam Solidarity Campaign.  He traveled all over the world as a journalist meeting and writing about some of the greatest figures of our generation, Malcolm X, Bertrand Russell, Henry Kissinger, John Lennon & Yoko Ono, for instance.

In the 80s he started his own independent television company, Bandung, producing for British Channel 4 and to this day is a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio.  He is considered to be one of the world’s foremost journalists, writing for magazines and newspapers such as The Guardian and the London Review of Books.  He is editorial director of London publishers Verso and is on the board of and edits the New Left Review.  He was the keynote speaker at the historic February 15th, 2003 rally in London preceding the Iraq War which turned out a million people.  Tariq Ali is a prolific writer of fiction as well as non fiction and has written so many books that it would be impossible to list them all here.  He has recently written 3 books about Pakistan. 

Tariq is passionate about Pakistan and the plight of the people.  That’s where he was born.  Right now Pakistan is on the cusp of power relationships between the US, Russia, India, China, Afghanistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Israel in the struggle over religion, money, oil, and global power.  Pakistan is crumbling, both politically and economically.  It is a country with an intricate political equilibrium.  Eight years of Bush Administration cowboy diplomacy and imperial foolishness have bungled the situation to the point where Pakistan is on the brink of dissolving into a pit of corruption and civil war.  If this happens it could have catastrophic consequences for the entire world.  Needless to say, US military violation of Pakistani sovereignty is not helping the situation.

Coming from the left, there may be no one with the historical depth and politico/economic savvy to give a clearer picture of the situation and what could be done to salvage it than Tariq.  He points out that Pakistan once possessed hope.  There was a student rebellion in the 60s there too but unlike here and in Europe, the students won.  Deep history, penetrating analysis, passionate compassion, courageous criticism -and from a radical perspective!  You can’t do any better than that.

Tariq’s new book is: The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power.

Thanks to Town Hall and Elliott Bay Books

Naomi Wolf- Give Me Liberty, Monday 10/13/07 8-9pm PST

Naomi Wolf- Give Me Liberty. Recorded 10/3/08

Naomi Wolf gave this talk last Friday at Town Hall.  She is touring with the follow up to her last book The End of America where she laid out the 10 steps to fascism.  The new book Give Me Liberty is supposed to be a handbook for actions we can take to save our democracy.  However this was not an optimistic event by any means.  In fact, what she had to say was downright terrifying.   Most of the talk focused on the 10 steps which are the tried and true means all dictators have historically taken to close down open societies and compared it to actions of the Bush Administration which have escalated to the recent repression of dissent and illegal arrest of reporters at the political conventions.  She says the coup de grâce came last week with the Wall Street bailout and the deployment of the 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team back from Iraq for “crowd control” in the US.  She believes it is likely that they are going to make their move to instigate a police state in the next few months.  This program is a must see.

Thanks to Seattle Town Hall and Elliott Bay Books

Vincent Warren- The CCR and the Struggle to Preserve the Rule of Law 10/13/07 Noon-1pm PST

 Vincent Warren- The CCR and the Struggle to Preserve the Rule of Law. Recorded 9/29/08

One of the key organizations fighting to restore democracy in the United States is the Center for Constitutional Rights.  CCR Executive Director Vincent Warren gave a talk last Monday, September 29th at the University of Washington Law School.  Pirate TV was there.  Director Warren talked about the Supreme Court's recent historic decision regarding the rights of the men at Guantánamo and the future of human rights and social justice in law.  The CCR is calling for a 100 Days campaign for the restoration of the Constitution and the protection and expansion of our rights in the first 100 days of the next administration.  Let’s hope we make it that far.

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Dexter Filkins: The Forever War, Monday 10/6/08 12-1pm PST

Dexter Filkins: The Forever War, Recorded 9/22/08

This week we compare the styles of two extraordinary war correspondents and how they cover the wars in the Middle East, one from the New York Times and the other from The Independent of London.  Two weeks ago Dexter Filkins was criticized on Democracy Now! by the Wall Street Journal‘s Farnaz Fassihi author of Waiting for an Ordinary Day: The Unraveling of Life in Iraq over a recent article he wrote where he describes how ‘he was just shocked at how so much has returned to, quote, “normalcy” in the country [Iraq].’  And appearently attributed it to the “surge”.  Fassihi went on to list 3 reasons for the decrease in violence, none of which had anything to do with the [much touted] slight increase in the US presence.  Chief among these is the so called Sunni awakening.  In fairness to Filkins, he actually discussed this here in great detail.  In response to a question, he told how the United States finally wised up and made a deal with the former Sunni insergents putting them on the payroll.  Something that L. Paul Bremmer if he had a clue, [or prehaps actually wanted to avoid a costly (read: profitable) insurgency] would have done in the very beginning instead of firing them all and sending them home with their hardware.  As Filkins discribes, they killed off 466 Al-Qaeda leaders in 6 weeks.  It seems they knew where they were all the time –“they had a list” (so much for the [much touted] notion that the Iraqis need us).  This is the main reason why the violence has dropped.  If you leave this out it may sound like Filkins is attributing the drop-off in violence to the surge.  So you may ask: Why was this part left out of the New York Times?  Who knows –maybe it wasn’t ‘fit to print’.

Irregardless of what news organization he works for or his own personal opinions -stated or unstated, about the veracity of US foreign policy, it is clear that Filkins is a correspondent of great stature who has risked his life almost daily to report the realities of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq since 1998.   You don’t need to know his opinion, just the vivid and deeply moving stories he tells and the incredible photographs he shows are enough to convince anyone of the horror, absurdity, and futility of war.  Dexter Filkin’s new book is The Forever War.  Covering US wars for the last decade, it must seem like one big war -forever.  Let’s hope he’s not right.

Thanks to Seattle Town Hall and Elliott Bay books

Robert Fisk: The Age of the Warrior, Monday 10/6/08 8-9pm PST

Robert Fisk: The Age of the Warrior, Recorded 9/26/08

I have wanted to have Robert Fisk on Pirate TV for many years.  The only western journalist to have interviewed Osama bin Laden (3 times), he has won more awards than any other foreign correspondent in the world.  Last Friday he finally found his way to Seattle.  In addition to being one of the most preeminent journalists of our era (currently writing for The Independent) he is a prolific author as well as a producer of documentaries for the BBC.

There are several things that set Fisk apart from your ordinary hit and run journalists, one of which is just that- he doesn’t drop in and fly out; he lives his beat, residing in Beirut for over 30 years.  Robert Fisk doesn’t need a translator, he speaks fluent Arabic.  And unlike so many others, he has the ability to put things in context.  As this talk and his many books reveal, he is an accomplished historian.  Not only is his understanding of the Middle East second to none among western correspondents, but it is clear that he is well versed in British, US, and ancient history as well.   Robert Fisk says that “what journalism is really about is to monitor power and the centers of power”.  He has demonstrated time and again that he has absolutley no compuncion against “afflicting the comfortable” –an attitude that would likely get him fired if he worked for an outfit like the New York Times.  In fact, he has a lot to say about the state of journalism (if you want to call it that) in our times.  –Just the kind of talk we like to hear on Pirate TV, since our main focus is the media.  Robert Fisk’s latest book is a compendium of pieces written since the U.S. invaded Iraq titled: The Age of the Warrior: Selected Essays.

Thanks to Washington Center for the Book at the Seattle Public Library and Elliott Bay Bookstore

David Wasdell: Planet Earth- We Have a Problem, Climate Dynamics a Scientific Update, Monday 9/29/08 12-1 and 8-9pm PST

David Wasdell: Planet Earth- We Have a Problem, Climate Dynamics a Scientific Update. Recorded June 2008 Tällberg, Sweden

Earlier this month I was invited to attend a scientific conference at the Foundation for the Future in Bellevue as an observer.  This was a high level scientific workshop composed of 14 of the world’s top experts on climate change.  The purpose of this forum titled: “Anthropogenic Climate Destabilization: A Worst-case Scenario” was to assess the impacts of human induced climate change in the next 20 to 40 years and on into the next century.  Needless to say, the prospects are grim.  However this does not mean that there are not abundant means to solve this emergency if we can only muster the political will.  Time is running shorter every day.  I’m going to be broadcasting some of the presentations from this workshop in the near future and all of the video will be posted shortly on the Foundation for the Future website.

This week’s show is a documentary I got from our friend David Wasdell director of the Meridian Programme in London who is widely regarded as one of the world’s top experts on Feedback Dynamics considered to be the most important new area of study in the science of climate change.  This documentary is a presentation that Mr. Wasdell gave last June at a scientific conference in Tällberg, Sweden.  Pirate TV viewers can consider this as an update on the show we did with Mr. Wasdell two and a half years ago.For more information see: http://www.apollo-gaia.org/
Thanks to The Apollo-Gaia Project, the Meridian Programme, and the Tällberg Forum. Recorded April 2008

Nena Baker: The Body Toxic, Monday 9/22/08 12-1 & 8-9pm PST
The Body Toxic: How the Hazardous Chemistry of Everyday Things Threatens Our Health and Well-being. Recorded 9/10/08
They say that what you eat you are.   That means you are a walking bag of chemical contaminants.  There are thousands of toxic substances, products of industrial production which leach out of the containers that our food and water comes in or come in the form of food additives.  More come from our immediate environment such as your carpet or flame retardants in your furniture, your computer, the soap and cosmetics you use, and even the cloths you wear.   These chemicals accumulate in our body tissue -fat, bones, blood, and organs and it is now becoming apparent that low level exposure to many of these substances is far more dangerous than was previously thought.  Modern chemistry may make our lives easier but unfortunately most if it is based on manufactured substances that are foreign to nature.  It’s very likely that at some point this could make good health foreign to you or your family if it hasn’t already.  Scientists are only beginning to understand the myriad of ways that exposure to low dose poisoning contributes to a host of developmental deficits and diseases.  These are effects that the chemical industry would rather you didn’t find out about.

Investigative journalist Nena Baker has been researching this subject and compiled it into a book: The Body Toxic: How the Hazardous Chemistry of Everyday Things Threatens Our Health and Well-being.  She offers a lot of good suggestions for how to avoid some of the worst exposures.

This talk was given as a part of the ongoing Future of Health series presented by the University Bookstore and Seattle Town Hall

Michael Parenti: Capitalism’s Apocalypse- Why the plutocrats can’t save anyone, not even themselves, Monday 9/15 Noon to 1 and 8-9pm PST

 Michael Parenti: Capitalism’s Apocalypse- Why the plutocrats can’t save anyone, not even themselves.  Recorded 8/27/08

I was listening to KPFA’s Flashpoints Radio on the web a few weeks ago and happened to catch Michael Parenti.  That started me thinking.  It’s been a while since Michael has been on Pirate TV.  Let’s face it –you need a little Parenti now and then.  So I looked on his website and found out where he was speaking next.  I sent off some emails to inquire if anyone was taping these and if I could get a copy.  I got an email back from Maria Gilardin of TUC radio who I later found out had put on a photo exhibition under the title: Toasting the End of Capitalism.  This speech was the closing toast.

In case you didn’t know, TUC [Time of Useful Consciousness] is an extraordinary program that runs in Seattle every Sunday on KEXP Mind over Matters.  I haven’t missed it in years.  The program which she produced with Pacifica Radio: Alex Carey- Corporations and Propaganda is one of the most powerful programs I ever heard on radio.   She plays it every year or two and when she does I can’t help but listen to it at least twice.  I must have heard it 15 times now.  It is the missing history of the 20th century: how an invisible force –the trillion dollar PR industry has been used to shape the political paradigm we live in by ending the new deal, destroying the labor movement, liberating corporations from the binds of democracy, and creating the most highly brainwashed populace in the industrialized world.  Who were the people behind this invisible force and how did they put a stop to social progress in the United States?  This is a subject not touched by any US history class I ever attended but the absence of which renders any study of the twentieth century as incoherent data.

This is also a subject not far from Michael Parenti’s focus in this talk.  He points out that there is a close relationship between Capitalism and Democracy.  This is not the mythical synonymous relationship you may absorb from the never ending propaganda bombardment.  It is an antagonistic relationship.  Democracy means rule by “Demos” [the people].  That is the very last thing “the owners” (as Gore Vidal calls them) will tolerate.  But left to their own devices monopoly corporations will devour everything including the economic environment on which they depend.  Not to mention the natural environment.  When corporations get political control, even corporations cannot long survive.  This is capitalism’s apocalypse and this is why the notion of a “free market” is a myth.

I’m sure that most of us realize this by now as we watch everything fall apart.  Michael Parenti combines this observation with a keen sense of who gains and who looses and he hasn’t lost his inclination for satire.  It’s the classiest class analysis around.  -Brought to you with love from Maria Gilardin. 

We close out the program with another special treat.  This would be a couple tunes from David Rovics.  David performed these tunes in Seattle last March in a fundraising benefit for the great folk singer Utah Phillips shortly before he died.

Special thanks to Martin Spencer Davies for videotaping Michael Parenti.

Jonathan Steele- Defeat, Monday 9/8/08 8-9pm PST

Jonathan Steele- Defeat: Why the Americans and British Lost Iraq. Recorded 3/27/08

Noam Chomsky had this to say about the Guardian of London’s senior foreign correspondent and columnist on international affairs: “For many years, it has been a remarkable experience to watch history unfold through Jonathan Steele’s discerning eyes. Often a painful experience as well. Regrettably, this is true of his wrenching analysis of the suffering of Iraq – as always, with penetrating intelligence and deep knowledge, drawing on his own courageous reporting from Iraq and the region and genuine comprehension of the rich and complex historical background of the awful events taking place before our eyes, another chapter in the record of treachery, hypocrisy and cruelty.”  Jonathan analyzes the Bush neo-cons and the Blair government’s dismal failure in Iraq from the standpoint of their own policy goals and what he saw there.  His new book is Defeat: Why the Americans and British Lost Iraq.

Thanks to Elliot Bay Books

Iraq: War Against the People

Larry Everest, Iraq: War Against the People

Jonathan Steele talks about what defeat means to the regimes of Bush and Blair and the suffering of the people of Iraq, but it’s one thing to talk about it and quite another to see it.  This is the second time the US has attacked and destroyed Iraq and killed over a million civilians.  This is not something the corporate war-for-profit media machine allows us to see.  So I dug up this old documentary filmed in the early 90s.  If Americans had been allowed to see horrific footage like this, it is questionable that the public could have been so easily lulled into passivity the second time.

David Cay Johnston- Free Lunch, Monday 9/1/08 8-9pm PST

Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You with the Bill) Recorded 4/30/08

New York Times, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist David Cay Johnston says that since the election of Ronald Reagan the federal tax system has changed so that instead of a system where the more you make, the greater the tax burden, the middle and upper middle classes are actually subsidizing the super rich.  This goes beyond the fact that the super rich, say for instance Warren Buffett, pays the same tax rate as his secretary, but an ever increasing amount of the money you pay in income taxes goes directly into the pocket of billionaires.  While the right wing propaganda machine relentlessly pounds in the idea that “Welfare Queens” are taking all your money, the reality that most of it goes to “socialism for rich” is not something that Corporate Media are interested in focusing on.  That would be “class warfare”.  This week Pirate TV takes a close look at even more ways that the filthy rich are increasing their income by impoverishing you than you already knew about with David Cay Johnston, author of Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You with the Bill).

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Kevin Phillips- Bad Money, Monday 9/1/08 Noon-1pm PST

Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics, and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism. Recorded 4/30/08

John Dean wrote a book analyzing the authoritarian personality in “Conservatives Without Conscience”.  From what we see these days, it may seem like they are all like that.  But there are some conservatives with conscience.  Scott Ritter for instance springs to mind.  Phillip Agee, the first high level CIA officer to defect to the public risked his life and gave up a career to expose the crimes he was witnessing and ended up spending the rest of his life in exile.  He was a conservative until cognitive dissonance was no longer an option.  So was Daniel Ellsberg.  He bought into the Cold War hype until his assignment  of compiling the secret history for the RAND Corporation exposed it all as a sham.  His conscience compelled him to copy it and give it to the NY Times.  If it wouldn’t have been for Watergate he would have spent the rest of his life in prison.

As a senior strategist for the Nixon campaign, Kevin Phillips helped get Nixon elected and served a year in the Nixon Justice Dept.   He retired to become a right wing pundit.  I used to see him on the McNeil Lehrer Report.  Clearly he had drunk the Kool-Aid but I never saw him endlessly prevaricate in the way of these high paid hacks these days.  He wasn’t reading the day’s White House talking points or any script for that matter, and I never saw him loose his cool or try to shout down, let alone interrupt someone who disagreed with him.  He was a real analyst, and an extremely brilliant one.  He is widely known for being the first to see the coming Republican majority as the south shifted after the Civil Rights Act.

The Kevin Phillips we see today is that same honest broker we saw then –sans the Kool-Aid.  It takes courage to admit when you are wrong and more to try to make up for it.  That kind of integrity seems non existent in today’s pundit world.  Clearly, the idea that he unwittingly participated in the instigation of what has turned out to be the current small ‘F’ fascism along with the economic regime [a la Milton Friedman] that has all but destroyed this country is not something that sits well with him.  He has spent the last several years writing books exposing every aspect of the neo-con con game.  In American Theocracy, he exposed how they have co-opted religion for political gain.  In American Dynasty, he opened the Bush Family skeleton closet.  In Wealth and Democracy, he catalogs the dismantling of the middle class.  Now on this weeks show he breaks down the US economy nut and bolt to reveal the damage done by 40 years of systematic pillage –the subject of his latest book: Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics, and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books and Town Hall Seattle

Silja Talvi: Women Behind Bars, Monday 8/25/08 Noon-1pm PST

 Women Behind Bars: The Crisis of Women in the U.S. Prison System, recorded 11/17/07

Seattle’s own muckraker par excellence, Silja J. A. Talvi’s investigative journalism work has won her multiple awards.  The senior editor at In These Times, is back on Pirate TV to take a closer look at the untouchables in American society.  That would be the exploding number of women in the US prison system.  Why “untouchables”?  Because it is a subject that the corporate media and most of the independent media won’t touch and that is as good a reason as any to explain why such a shocking atrocity could go on and on.   The US now has over 2.3 million prisoners, more than anywhere else in the world.  One in three Americans now has a criminal record.  Wake up!  We’re living in a god damn gulag state.

Many Americans are appalled to hear about the torture, abuse, and hellish conditions perpetrated in Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, and other secret and not so secret detention centers but would be surprised to learn that conditions in US prisons aren’t much better.  In fact, many of the mercenary interrogators and guards who carry out these atrocities learned their sadistic wares in US prisons and law enforcement. –And vise versa.

No less shameful is the treatment of women in prison.  Every day women in prison suffer and slowly die from inadequate medical care and lack of treatment.  Every day they suffer sexual humiliation and rape as well as the torture of solitary confinement, and for what?  The majority of these women [60%] are prisoners of that other phony war, the so called “War on Drugs”.  And like the “War on Terror” it is a war that is designed never to end.  It’s making a lot of well connected scum bags rich though, wiping out civil liberties, training up a lot of Gestapo, funding US secret foreign policy, and keeping US client states like Mexico, Colombia, and Afghanistan solvent, not to mention US transnational banks.  So it’s a success!

What other society that claims to be civilized takes it’s poorest and weakest who so happen to be sick and instead of giving them treatment locks them in a dungeon so as to make a profit off of warehousing their carcasses?  Why not grind them up and sell them as Soylent Green?  Better yet, they could chop them into pieces and sell their parts on the international organ market.  Will someone please tell me how what we’re doing is somehow less barbaric?  This is not to say that there aren’t people in prison who deserve to be there.  But this is a system designed not to rehabilitate but to perpetuate crime, control the rabble, scare the public into electing fascists, and profit off of it.  Win, win, win.  All the while, people are made to believe that a sickness is a crime.  Sort of like how they were suckered into believing that a crime was a war.

Silja says that after conducting these hundreds of interviews and compiling them into a book that it will be another 5 years before she will have recovered the emotional strength to do work like this again.  I can relate.  “Get real Christine, nobody ever died from smoking pot”, I told the future Gov. a few years back when she was still Attorney General.  That stopped her line of bullshit in its tracks and she had to try a different dialectic.  Back then there were only 1 million people in prison [sic].  I gave her a tongue lashing for a good 15 minutes.  It’s not like they haven’t heard the “harm reduction rap”.  They just don’t have the courage to say the emperor has no cloths.  Drug War Inc. is a huge profit center.  As Attorney General she got billions from the feds in drug war funding, what agency turns down billions?  Ralph Nader says progressives don’t know how to play poker.  When they need you to vote or walk a precinct, that’s the time to extract a concession -not after.  Judging from this week’s primary results, there are still plenty of whackos in this state.  Governor Christine need’s your support big-time, now’s the time to demand that she stop this madness and make her cop to it.

Need some motivation?  Just watch this.  Or if you think you can stomach it.  Read Silja’s book- Women Behind Bars: The Crisis of Women in the U.S. Prison System.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Michael T. Klare: The New Geopolitics of Energy 8/25/08 8-9pm PST

Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet: The New Geopolitics of Energy, recorded 4/17/8

Nobody understands the big energy picture better than Michael Klare.  Those of you who saw him on Pirate TV talking about Resource Wars know this.  Since then he has come out with two more books: Blood and Oil and now the latest, Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet: The New Geopolitics of Energy.  Michael Klare heads up the “Defense Desk” at The Nation.  He also writes for Harper’s, and Foreign Affairs and teaches Peace and World Security Studies at Hampshire College.  He says if we don’t get out from under Big Oil and move rapidly towards clean energy technologies that we are going to end up in a shooting war with China over the last drops of oil while the planet burns.  I say we impeach Exxon.  You absolutely need to hear how he sums up the situation in Iraq.  That’s what I like: KLARE-ity.

Thanks to Carl Chatski for videotaping
Thanks to Elliott Bay Books for letting us

Rep. Jay Inslee and Bracken Hendricks: Apollo’s Fire, Monday 8/18/08 8-9 PM PST

 Rep. Jay Inslee and Bracken Hendricks: Apollo's Fire: Igniting America's Clean Energy Economy
Rep. Jay Inslee and energy policy wonk extraordinaire Bracken Hendricks gave this talk last November at the Seattle Town Hall about the subject of their book: Apollo's Fire: Igniting America's Clean Energy Economy.  Although the more you look into the nature of the climate crisis the more depressing you realize the situation is, this does not mean that there aren’t good reasons for hope.  It’s important that we are aware of this.  We can’t let the enormity of the crisis paralyze us at the very time when we need to make the most of the narrowing window of opportunity we have to save the planet.  I’m more optimistic than I’ve been in years.

I think it should be clear by now that the goal that Inslee and Bracken, as well as many politicians, environmentalists, and energy analysts have been touting of 80% carbon reduction in the US by 2050 is a sure-fire plan to wipe out all higher forms of life on the planet.  The rapid melting of the arctic ice cap alone is solid (liquid?) [sorry] proof that the climate models are off by magnitudes.  Apparently climate modeling is not what it’s cracked up [help me please] to be.  We are in a race against time to get to net zero carbon emissions ASAP and then some.  At this point we need to find ways to suck massive carbon out of the atmosphere if we are going to have any chance to avoid runaway global warming.  However, many of the technologies we will need to get to net zero are already here or will be coming on line in the very near future.  Does this mean that we are not going to have to drastically alter the way we live?   No, but new technology is a major part of the equation.  These technologies could provide the high paying jobs we need for a new clean industrial revolution and break the back of the predatory capitalist Chicago School economic model.  Many of the businesses developing these cutting edge technologies exist right here in the Pacific Northwest.

One of the technologies mentioned in this show, not by the authors but by a member of the audience is the compressed air car.  When I first heard of this, I blew it off.  How can you drive a hundred miles on a tank full of air?  But a simple web search reveals that these cars are already in production in India.  See: Tata Motors OneCAT.  Advanced models that can go possibly a thousand miles will be in the US by 2010.  If this happens, it will make GM’s Volt plug-in hybrid obsolete before it even gets to the show room.  That’s how fast things are moving.  Too bad for GM (and Exxon): Some dinosaurs may still go extinct.

Watch Compressed Air Car Video
Thanks to Seattle Town Hall and Elliott Bay Books

Barbara Ehrenreich- This Land is Their Land, Monday 8/11/08 8-9pm PST 

This Land is Their Land: Reports From a Divided Nation
Sometimes we feel the need to “chuckle in the graveyard”.  This week we spend some time poking fun at the ruling class with the prolific author (20 books), social critic, journalist, and activist Barbara Ehrenreich who was here talking up her latest collection of essays: This Land is Their Land: Reports From a Divided Nation.  This talk given last month at the Seattle Public Library takes up about ¾ of the program and will be followed by a documentary short:

The Easiest Targets: The Israeli Policy of Strip Searching Women and Children

The Easiest Targets: The Israeli Policy of Strip Searching Women and Children

This documentary investigation from the If Americans Knew project tells the stories of five women – Palestinian, American, Muslim, Christian, and Jewish, humiliated and harassed by Israeli border guards and airport security officials, some as children, in a deliberate policy aimed at keeping Palestinians, activists, and others who are sympathetic to Palestine from traveling to Israel/Palestine.  This tactic, unknown to most Americans is another ongoing war crime perpetrated by the Israeli state and violates any number of international conventions.

Global Warning: An Interview with Mordechi Vanunu

Global Warning: An Interview with Mordechi Vanunu

Nuclear technician Mordechi Vanunu has been called the world’s greatest whistleblower for exposing the Israeli nuclear arsinal to the Sunday Times in London at a time when Israel was insisting it would not be the first to introduce nuclear weapons to the Middle East.  For this he was kidnapped by Mossad in Italy and spent 18 years in prison including 11 in solitary confinement.

Released in 2004, he was banned from talking to foreign media and also barred from leaving Israel which he immediately defied by talking to Democracy Now! and other outlets.  The Israeli government threw him back in prison.  Produced by the Council for the National Interest and Alchymedia this interview conducted in 2005 also contains a statement from Daniel Ellsberg.

George Lakoff: The Political Mind, Monday 8/4/08 Noon-1pm PST

George Lakoff: The Political Mind- Why You Can't Understand 21st Century American Politics with an 18th Century Brain

The United States was founded on liberal principals of democracy, freedom, and equality which derive from enlightenment assumptions about the nature of human beings.  For instance, the basic assumption that humans, being universally rational creatures, are capable of discerning what is in their collective self interest and if given the chance will vote that way is the basis for the concept of self government.  However, as we have seen and as documented in Thomas Frank’s excellent book, What's The Matter With Kansas?, people are easily persuaded to vote in ways that are diametrically opposed to their best interest time and time again, even as conservative policies drive them (and us) to ruin.

Why is this?  Acclaimed linguist, cultural analyst and author of Don’t Think of an Elephant, George Lakoff is back on Pirate Television to address this conundrum.  Who says that enlightenment assumptions are universal?  Who says that human brains think rationally at all?  George Lakoff uses the latest research in cognitive science to show that everything that we think we know about human rationality is wrong.  In fact, the emotional and logical parts of the brain cannot be separated, most reasoning is not conscious, but unconscious, and we perceive the world not in terms of ideas, but frames.

This knowledge has important political ramifications because conservatives are way ahead of us.  With all their think tank research and PR machinery they have devoted a significant amount of resources to be able to frame the debate on vital issues more effectively than liberals.  We are still going on the assumption that by presenting the most reasonable arguments based on what we assume to be universal values we will win the debate and are baffled to discover that most of the time facts don’t matter -especially with conservatives.  Conservatives have long ago dispensed with presenting rational arguments in any shape or form yet they still win elections.  Does this mean that we have to lower ourselves to their level by using deceptive framing to elicit knee jerk reactions and cheapen ourselves by using Madison Avenue hype and emotional manipulation tactics to sell our candidates and policies?  No, but we can’t assume that our enlightenment values are universal and that we don’t need to sell them.  And above all we need a more sophisticated understanding of brain functioning if we are going to be able to win the war of language.  Framing is not necessarily deception.  It’s how brains think.  We can’t expect to get our point across by thoughtlessly adopting their frames.  We have to develop our own.  George Lakoff tells us how to do it.

The full title of Dr. Lakoff’s latest book is: The Political Mind: Why You Can't Understand 21st Century American Politics with an 18th Century Brain.

Thanks to Town Hall Seattle and Elliott Bay Books

Amory Lovins, Profitable Solutions to Oil, Climate, and Proliferation, Monday 8/4/08 8-9pm PST

 Amory Lovins: Profitable Solutions to Oil, Climate, and Proliferation

A MacArthur Fellow and consultant physicist, Amory Lovins is considered one of the preeminent energy policy gurus of our times.   The cofounder and leader of the  Rocky Mountain Institute (www.rmi.org), an independent, market-oriented, nonprofit applied research center, he has Published in 29 books and hundreds of papers, his work in about 50 countries has been recognized by the "Alternative Nobel”, and many other prizes.  He advises industries and governments worldwide, and has briefed 18 heads of state.  Catapulted to world attention with the publishing of his book Natural Capitalism (www.natcap.org), RMI spun off E SOURCE (www.esource.com) in 1992 and Hypercar, Inc. (www.hypercar.com), which he chairs, in 1999. His 29th book, Winning the Oil Endgame (www.oilendgame.com), was published 20 September 2004. 

Amory Lovins was in town for the Seattle Green Festival (www.greenfestivals.org) where I was able to tape this lecture.  Although we can’t expect technology alone at this point to get us out of the global climate crisis, there are a formidable number of remarkable climate solutions out there which you would never hear about on “Petro-TV”.   Join us for an invigorating look at the promise of the future brought to the here and now by Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute.

Thanks to the Seattle Green Festival

Steven Kazlowski-The Last Polar Bear, Monday 7/28/08 8-9pm PST

 Steven Kazlowski: The Last Polar Bear: Facing the Truth of a Warming World

Wildlife photographer Steven Kazlowski, spent 8 years photographing polar bears and documenting the loss of habitat that has driven them to the brink of extinction due to disappearing sea ice in the arctic.  Steven shares many beautiful pictures from his new book: The Last Polar Bear: Facing the Truth of a Warming World.  His 40 min slide show is followed by more Q&A from Dahr Jamail’s talk broadcast last week.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Alternative Views: FEMA- A Signature and Fascism, Monday 7/28/08 Noon-1pm PST

Alternative Views: FEMA- A Signature and Fascism

Regular viewers of Pirate TV are probably the last to harbor any illusions about the nature or the fascist power structure that rules this phony democracy.  But neither should we allow ourselves to fall victim to the carefully cultivated illusion that we are powerless.  The fascists most certainly don’t.  They are all too aware of who are the few and who are the many and the thought that “Joe Six-pack” may suddenly reach a point where he’s had enough and rise up off his couch and start hanging thieving corporatists and mass murdering war criminals from the nearest tree has always been the real source of terror behind bogus anti-terrorism legislation such as the PATRIOT Act, the Military Commissions Act, and now H.R. 1955: the “Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007” which having just overwhelmingly passed the Democratic House is now awaiting approval by the Senate and will retroactively render this very email as an act of “terrorism”. 

Judging from the acceleration of the attack on the Bill of Rights the terror in high places must be reaching a crescendo.  The American fascists have pulled out all the stops.  There will be no email, no telephone call unmonitored, no dissident or protest group left uninfiltrated and when (not if) that’s not good enough to keep the rabble in check there are 600 concentration camps all fully operational and ready to receive prisoners.  These concentration camps will kick into gear with the president’s signature and the declaration of martial law, finally pounding the last nail in the coffin of constitutional government and will be run and staffed by your friendly bureaucrat at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Just to drive home the point that this rush towards tyranny is not likely to end with the installation of another corporatist Democrat in the White House, we reach into the “way-back machine” of the vast Pirate TV archive to take us on a journey back to the times of the Bush Sr. Administration when this episode of Alternative Views was made.   With the help of Chip Barlet, John Stockwell, Arthur Knoy of the National Lawyers' Guild, Rep. Ron Paul, Rep. Henry Gonzalez, Frank Wilkinson, and Tom Philpott a historian from U of Texas, we will take a close look at the history of FEMA and how it was transformed in the 80’s from a legitimate agency established by the Carter Administration to maintain continuity of government in case of nuclear war or natural disaster to the current American Schutzstaffel [SS] which translated means “Protective Squad” –Homeland Security anyone?

Hopefully we will reemerge with a clear idea that the dismantlement of constitutional government is a long term project instigated and ongoing over the last 35 years with overwhelming bipartisan support in each and every case.  This move toward fascism is not a fluke, an accident, or misunderstanding.  It’s deliberate and calculated.  The corporate power structure knows exactly what they are doing and what they are about and that includes the leadership of the Democratic Party.  This will help dispel any confusion out there about why the Democrats vote the wrong way on civil liberties and war every single time.  We are ruled by fascists and there should be no doubt about it.  It’s going to take more than an election to get us out of it.  Mass action and mass awareness could have stopped the camps in Hitler’s Germany.  It’s the only way are going to be able to stop it from happening here.

See also:

Project Censored: Homeland Security Contracts KBR to Build Detention Centers in the US

Dahr Jamail: Iraq and Iran -In Context, Monday 7/21/08 8-9pm PST

Dahr Jamail: Iraq and Iran -In Context

Dahr Jamail, voice of truth and reason, is the 2008 winner of the Martha Gellhorn Prize for journalism and author of the award winning book Beyond the Green Zone: Dispatches from an Unembedded Journalist in Occupied Iraq.  Dahr gave this talk last month in Seattle with the aim of putting the current situation in Iraq and Iran in context of history and realities on the ground resulting from the Neo-con foreign policy agenda of global domination and contrasts it to the propaganda web spun by the corporate power structure.

Ahmed Rashid: Descent into Chaos, Monday 7/21/08 Noon-1pm PST

Descent into Chaos: The United States and the Failure of Nation Building in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia

Pakistani journalist (Washington Post, Daily Telegraph, BBC Online) and author of Taliban, Jihad and The Resurgence of Central Asia, talks about his latest, Descent into Chaos: The United States and the Failure of Nation Building in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asia.  Rashid catalogs the reasons for the disintegration of Central Asia brought about by the failed Bush Administration policies in Pakistan.

Thanks to Town Hall Seattle and Elliott Bay Books

Eric Alterman- Why We’re Liberals, Monday 7/14/08 8-9pm PST

 Why We’re Liberals: A Political Handbook for Post-Bush America

Journalism professor, media columnist for The Nation, and unabashed liberal Eric Alterman tackles the question of why the right wing PR machine has zeroed in on the word liberal in the language battle and successfully turned it into an embarrassment.  Could it have something to do with the fact that on the issues the vast majority of Americans are liberal?  What does it mean to be liberal and how do we reclaim our moniker?   Hear him address these issues and much more and have a good time while you are at it.  Eric is hilariously funny!  Other books by Eric Alterman include: The Book on Bush, with Mark Greene, What Liberal Media?, When Presidents Lie, Who Speaks for America?, and It Ain't No Sin to be Glad You're Alive.

Jeremy Scahill- Blackwater, Monday 7/7/08 8-9pm PST

 Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army

Polk Award-winning journalist Jeremy Scahill, a frequent contributor to "The Nation" magazine and "Democracy Now!" talks about his book, Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army.  “Blackwater is the utterly gripping and explosive story of how the Bush administration has spent hundreds of millions of public dollars building a parallel corporate army, an army so loyal to far right causes it constitutes nothing less than a Republican Guard. The most important and chilling book about the death throes of U.S. democracy you will read in years and a triumph of investigate reporting.” – Naomi Klein. “This engrossing investigative piece exposing, in shocking detail, a U.S. government-outsourced Frankenstein replete with helicopter gunships may leave you incredulous. But you better believe it, for it poses a grave and gathering danger to the future of our Republic.” – Ray McGovern.

Thanks to Town Hall Seattle and Elliott Bay Books

Jim Douglass- JFK and the Unthinkable,  Monday 7/7/08 12-1pm PST

JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters
part1 & 2 1:26

Jim Douglass puts together shocking new evidence with a new analysis of the sequence of events from the Bay of Pigs Invasion to the Cuban Missile Crisis that transformed Kennedy from a conventional Cold Warrior to someone determined to pull the world back from the edge of apocalypse and unknown until now initiated a secret back-channel dialogue with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev thus causing members of his own U.S. Military-intelligence establishment to regard him as a dangerous traitor who had to be eliminated. Jim Douglass is the author of JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters. 

NW Winter Soldier Hearings pt. 1- 4, Monday 6/9-30/08 12-12:30 pm PST

NW Winter Soldier Hearings pt.1 Soldiar Testimony NW Winter Soldier Hearings pt.2 Soldiar Testimony NW Winter Soldier Hearings pt.3 Solidarity Panel with Dahr Jamail and Antonia Juhasz NW Winter Soldier Hearings pt.4 Breaking Ranks, the Future of G.I. Resistance

GI Testimony            GI Testimony 2         Solidarity Panel       Future of GI Resistance These are the historic NW Winter Soldier hearings organized by the Iraq Veterans Against the War in four installments.  Recorded at Seattle Town Hall 5/31/08

Dr. Norman Finkelstein- The Fake Controversy, Monday 6/30/08 12:30-1 pm PST
Dr. Norman Finkelstein- The Fake Controversy

The political scientist and dean of critics of Israeli foreign policy gave this talk titled "The Fake Controversy" at the University of Washington May 8th and was taped by Bill Alford of Moral Politics.   Finkelstein was denied tenure at DePaul in June 2007, and placed on administrative leave for the 2007-2008 academic year.  Among the controversial aspects of this decision were attempts by Alan Dershowitz, to derail Finkelstein's tenure.  Last month Finkelstein was denied entry to Israel because, according to unnamed Israeli security officials, of suspicions that "he had contact with elements 'hostile' to Israel".  Much thanks to Bill for taping the event and the extraordinary job he did in editing the 2 hr talk down to 27 minutes.

Steven T. Wax- Kafka Comes to America, Monday 6/30/08 8-9pm PST

 Steven T. Wax- Kafka Comes to America

Synopsis from Random House


Those were words Steven T. Wax never imagined he would hear himself say. In his thirty-four years as a lawyer, Wax didn’t have to warn a client that he or she might be taken away to a military brig, or worse, a “black site,” one of our country’s dreaded secret prisons. So how had we come to this? The disappearance of people happens in places ruled by tyrants, military juntas, fascist strongmen–governments with such contempt for the rule of law that they strip their citizens of all rights. But in America?

Under the Bush administration, not only have the civil rights of foreigners been in jeopardy, but also those of U.S. citizens. In Kafka Comes to America, Wax interweaves the stories of two men he represented who were caught up in our government’s post-9/11 counterterrorism measures. Brandon Mayfield, an American-born, small-town lawyer and family man, was arrested as a terrorist suspect in the Madrid train station bombings after a fingerprint was mistakenly traced back to him by the FBI. Adel Hamad, a Sudanese hospital administrator working in Pakistan, was taken from his apartment and flown in chains to the United States military prison in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, for no substantiated reason. Kafka Comes to America reveals where and how our civil liberties have been eroded in favor of a false security, and how each of us can make a difference. If these events could happen to Brandon Mayfield and Adel Hamad, they could happen to anyone. They could happen to you.

Steven T. Wax is in his seventh term as the Federal Public Defender for the District of Oregon. A cum laude graduate of Colgate University and Harvard Law School, he was a key part of the Brooklyn, N.Y. District Attorney’s prosecution of David Berkowitz, a.k.a. “Son of Sam.” Wax and his team are representing seven men held as “enemy combatants” in Guantánamo. He has taught at the Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College, serves as an ethics prosecutor for the Oregon State Bar, and lectures throughout the country.

Thanks to The University Bookstore

David Sirota- The Uprising, Monday 6/23/08 8-9pm PST

 David Sirota- The Uprising: An All-Access Pass to the Populist Insurrection Brewing Across the Country

Activist David Sirota is back on Pirate TV.  He says he is traveling the country to get the message out about the populist uprisings that are occurring coast to coast both within the right and the left.  What is the message?  He says that these uprisings are taking the shape of progressive electoral victories in what have been considered red states such as Montana and the rise of the Minutemen militia in California.  He points out that the population has risen up in many instances in the past resulting in progressive change in the Prairie Populist and New Deal eras but he warns that these uprisings are a double edged sword and don’t always turn out as we may expect.   Frustration with the Viet Nam War, the scandals of the Nixon era, and the failure of the Carter Administration to bring about the needed changes resulted in the Reagan “revolution” whereby the corporatist reactionaries were able use their propaganda machine to channel that energy towards revulsion with government ushering in the current decent into Fascism.  Let’s hope that doesn’t happen again but it’s almost certain that it will if we don’t force the Democratic Party to deal with the serious problems that we face.  That’s going to be a tall order.  The full title of Dave’s new book is: The Uprising: An All-Access Pass to the Populist Insurrection Brewing Across the Country.

Cindy Sheehan, Moving Toward a Peace Economy, Monday 6/16/08 8-9pm PST
 Cindy Sheehan, Moving Toward a Peace Economy, Town Hall Seattle 6/6/08

I think I agree with Mike Malloy.  I hate back stabbing, cowardly, corporatist sellouts like Norm Dicks and Nancy Pelosi more than goose stepping Republicans.  Why?  At least with the Republicans, you know what you are getting.  That’s not to say that I would ever recommend voting for one or at this point even voting for a third party candidate when there was a chance that it could throw the election to a Republican.  But if current trends continue, there’s a good chance that in spite of all their election rigging shenanigans and the naked Republican bias in the corporate media, the next election could be as close to a complete shutout as ever in US history.  It was Gore Vidal who remarked, “The people are coming”.  They are turning out in numbers that I have never seen and when that happens, the “minority party” doesn’t stand a chance.  With a little luck we will be spared the scourge of Republican influence for at least a generation if not for good.

But let us not be fooled again.  If current trends continue, once we are safely ensconced under Democratic rule those of us who have forgotten are going to be reminded once again what the phrase “worthless Democrat” means.  My good friend Geov Parrish once quipped that politicians almost never do the right thing unless you force them to.  That’s because doing the right thing almost always involves going up against the “owners” to borrow another word from Mr. Vidal.  And no politician is going to risk that unless they are forced to –even if they want to.  So don’t get any ideas about slinging your butt back on the couch and fading back into your trance anytime soon.  We have a war to stop, some war criminals in serious need of prosecution, a constitution to be restored, and a planet to be saved and you are delusional if you are holding your breath for the “good cops” of the corporate empire who were complicit in getting us into this mess.

Why do Dennis Kucinich’s 35 articles of impeachment send Democrats in Congress scurrying for cover like so many cockroaches running from the light?  The simple reason is because the Democratic leadership of the House and Senate signed on to almost all of the crimes committed by the “Bush Crime Family”.  Don’t forget they are almost all on board for attacking Iran.  An indictment of the Bush administration for any of these 35 articles is also an indictment of themselves.

I say that while we are about the business of taking out the Republican scum bags that we should take out a few Dem scum bags while we are at it.  If there is one thing that the Obama campaign has proven for once and for all, it’s that we don’t have to wait around for the Democratic Party to get behind campaign finance reform.  When the people are mobilized, the people’s money is stronger than corporate money.  The people’s money streaming in from all over the country stopped a heavily funded attempt to unseat Dennis Kucinich.  We have an excellent opportunity to drive this point home once again by supporting Cindy Sheehan in her attempt to unseat the Speaker of the House and my friend Paul Richmond in his attempt to unseat Norm Dicks.  And it’s safe because neither one has any real Republican opposition.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve had about all I’m going to take from the war mongering blue dogs and phony progressives and if we want real change then it’s about time we start putting our money where our mouth is and support real progressive candidates for office.  And there is no more effective way to invest your money because even if they loose it sends a strong message to sellouts like Pelosi and Dicks that they had better mind their Ps and Qs.  Their days are numbered lest they forget who pays their salary.

And lest any of us forget why Cindy Sheehan deserves our support, I’m broadcasting this extraordinary speech given last week at Seattle Town Hall.  And lest any of us needs to know why we should be supporting my friend Paul Richmond’s campaign for Norm Dicks’ seat in Congress, I am posting his excellent talk from the same event on the Pirate TV website.

Paul Richmond, Town Hall Seattle 6/6/08

Paul Richmond
for Congress

Invest in the future here:

Cindy for Congress

Paul Richmond for Congress

Loretta Napoleoni- Rogue Economics, Monday 6/9/08 8-9pm PST

 Rogue Economics: Capitalism's New Reality

The Italian economist, journalist, banker, Fulbright scholar, and author of Terror Inc: Tracing the Money Behind Global Terrorism, Loretta Napoleoni has demonstrated that she is not only a brilliant economist but a magnificent iconoclast because she is willing to look in places no one else does to reveal that economic and political realities aren’t at all as they seem.  Last time she was on Pirate TV she was talking about her book Modern Jihad which extended her investigation of the terrorist financial networks.  As I stated at that time: “Loretta Napoleoni says that the underground economy of which a third comprises the “new economy of Terror” is a huge chunk of the world financial system and because this money is laundered in the US and Europe, our economy is dependent on it.  [She] estimates through 10 years of careful research that this economy amounts to 1.5 trillion dollars, twice the GDP of the United Kingdom.”   Indeed, things are not as they seem.

Now in Rogue Economics: Capitalism's New Reality she turns her “deep economic” gaze to the big picture and offers an analysis of the state of capitalist globalization gone wild, free of constraints as the power of nation states collapses and the terrible and entirely predictable consequences that we are witnessing from the reemergence of slavery to the sub-prime mortgage crisis. What prompted a huge and fascinating debate is that she seems to be saying, ‘never fear’, bad as it is, this has happened time and again throughout history and marks the birthing pains of a new political/economic paradigm and that this new order may not take the shape of representative “democracy” which as she points out historically has not actually been all that democratic.

 Nobody in the audience including me agreed with her.  This doesn’t necessarily mean that she is wrong or that anybody actually grasped what she was talking about.  But as I see it, although her analysis of the situation may be extraordinary in its depth in cataloguing the problems of runaway capitalism, I don’t think she has the slightest idea about runaway global warming.  She refuses to concede the possibility that it all could end -that this may not be just another cycle of filthy rich run amuck followed by a period of social evolution.  This may be something totally different.  We may not have 20-50 years to get capitalism under control.  This is the problem with economists in general; they rarely take the realities {and limits} of nature into account.  She also says that globalization is here to stay.  I seriously doubt the corporate globalization model can survive the onset of peak oil let alone the return to localism and the deconstruction of centralized power and production structures that will be necessary to survive the climate emergency.  But she’s right, if by some miracle we are able to adapt fast enough to survive the looming crises, it definitely will be a new paradigm.

I wish that I could have broadcast this whole fascinating discussion but I had to edit the broadcast version down to 58 minutes.  It is indicative of the caliber of people who read Loretta’s work.  I have posted the entire 1hr and 20 minutes on the Pirate TV website.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Daoud Hari- The Translator, Monday 6/2/08 12-1 and 8-9 PM PST

The Translator: A Tribesman’s Memoir of Darfur

Daoud Hari gives the inside story of the horrors of Darfur.  A tribesman and refugee of the Darfur region, he received international attention for his work as guide and translator for U.S. journalists.  Captured in 2006 with Pulitzer Prize-winning Chicago Tribune journalist Paul Salopek he was imprisoned for over a month. Daoud, who was tortured by his Sudanese captors, was released after a campaign of international pressure.   His new book: The Translator: A Tribesman’s Memoir of Darfur was co-written by aid worker Megan McKenna who also participated in this talk.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Colonel (Ret.) Ann Wright- Dissent: Voices of Conscience, Monday 5/26/08 12-1pm PST

Col. Ann Wright at UT Methodist Ch 4/18/08

Co-presented with VOICES OF CONSCIENCE. After 29 years in the U.S. military and sixteen years as a State Department diplomat, Col. Ann Wright resigned her post as deputy ambassador in 2003 to protest the then-coming war in Iraq – and the curtailment of rights in the U.S. In Dissent: Voices of Conscience (Koa), Ann Wright and Susan Dixon tell the stories of dozens of other government insiders and active-duty military who spoke out, resigned, leaked documents, or refused to deploy in protest of the war in Iraq. Dissent was just named the February 2008 American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression ‘Book of the Month.’

Raj Patel- The Hidden Battle for the World Food System, Monday 5/26/08 8-9pm PST

Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System

Educated at Oxford, the London School of Economics and Cornell University, currently a fellow at the Institute for Food and Development Policy in Oakland, California, a visiting researcher at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa and a visiting scholar at the Center for African Studies at the University of California at Berkeley, Raj Patel has worked for the World Bank, the WTO, consulted for the UN and been involved in international campaigns against his former employers ever since.   Tear-gassed on four continents he takes a close look at what’s happened to the world food system- the result of corporate globalization, industrialized agriculture and the consolidation of the food commodity markets controlled by five global monopolies.   His new book- Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System has received international acclaim and examines the root causes of hunger and obesity and how people are fighting back.  This talk given May 10th is also timely in light of the current food crisis.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

See also www.stuffandstarved.org

Father Roy Bourgeois- School of the Americas and American Foreign Policy, Monday 5/19/08 12-1pm PST

Father Roy Bourgeois- School of the Americas and American Foreign Policy
Father Roy Bourgeois, founder of School of the Americas Watch (SOAW), makes a welcome return once again to Pirate TV and brings us an update on the situation in Latin America in relation to US foreign policy and the ongoing collapse of US hegemony.  Recently returning from talks with the governments of Ecuador and Nicaragua, he brings us good news that these two countries are joining the growing list of states that are ending their military’s relationship to the School of the Americas (renamed WHINSEC: the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation), still known throughout much of the world as the School of Assassins.  However, never stymied, the US recently started up another “school” in El Salvador to train police.  Correspondingly, state oppression and violence against labor and social justice activists is on the rise in that country.

Jeffrey Toobin- The Nine, Monday 5/19/08 8-9pm PST

Jeffrey Toobin- The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court
Meet the Supremes, no, not the vocal group that sang “Where Did Our Love Go” but that group of august jurists who have many of us singing “Where Did Our Constitution Go?”  The author of the NYT best seller, The Nine gives us an inside look at the inner workings of the US Supreme Court and the personalities involved.  The full title of his book is: The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court.

West Coast Shut Down!  Monday 5/12/08 12-1pm PST

West Coast Shut Down! Mayday 2008

May 1st on international workers day the International Longshoremen’s Union (ILWU) called for a one day general strike to protest the war which shut down the entire West Coast.   Since May 1st is my birthday, I couldn’t ask for a better birthday present.  This show is video of the rally after the protest march.  We are broadcasting these speeches to commemorate this historic event.

Maude Barlow: Blue Covenant, Monday 5/12/08 8-9pm PST

Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water

Fair Trade activists will remember Maude Barlow’s talk the last time she was here at the Benaroya Hall anti-globalization teach-in that preceded the Seattle WTO rebellion.  In addition to being one of the visionaries who first alerted the world to the dangers of corporate globalization with her book about the MAI: MAI: The Multilateral Agreement on Investment and the Threat to Canadian Sovereignty, she is an internationally-renowned environmental activist known for her work in the water justice movement.  With this book, she brings us another warning.  In addition to the climate change crisis, the peak oil crisis, and now the food crisis, the world is about to run out of fresh water.  It may not be surprising that all of these crises are closely related.  The same runaway transnational corporate structure that is rapidly depleting everything else is also privatizing and monopolizing the water commons in order to profit off of the crises that they themselves have created.  As Bill McKibben put it, “we’re about to go H2O broke”.  It’s not something a lot of people realize.

Maude Barlow is the National Chairperson of The Council of Canadians, Canada’s largest public advocacy organization, and the co-founder of the Blue Planet Project, working internationally for the right to water. She serves on the boards of the International Forum on Globalization and Food and Water Watch, as well as being a Councillor with the Hamburg-based World Future Council.

Maude is the recipient of six honorary doctorates, the 2005/2006 Lannan Cultural Freedom Fellowship Award, and the 2005 Right Livelihood Award (known as the “Alternative Nobel”) for her global water justice work. She is also the best-selling author or co-author of sixteen books, including Blue Gold: The Fight to Stop Corporate Theft of the World’s Water and the recently released Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Colonel (Ret.) ANN WRIGHT gave this talk Friday, April 18 at University Temple United Methodist Church

Col. Ann Wright at UT Methodist Ch 4/18/08
Co-presented with VOICES OF CONSCIENCE. After 29 years in the U.S. military and sixteen years as a State Department diplomat, Col. Ann Wright resigned her post as deputy ambassador in 2003 to protest the then-coming war in Iraq – and the curtailment of rights in the U.S. In Dissent: Voices of Conscience (Koa), Ann Wright and Susan Dixon tell the stories of dozens of other government insiders and active-duty military who spoke out, resigned, leaked documents, or refused to deploy in protest of the war in Iraq. Dissent was just named the February 2008 American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression ‘Book of the Month.’

E.J. Dionne, Jr.: Souled Out, Monday 5/5/08 8-9pm and 12- 1pm PST

E.J. Dionne, Jr.: Souled Out: Reclaiming Faith & Politics After the Religious Right
E.J. Dionne, syndicated columnist from the Washington Post and NPR correspondent talks about the declining influence of the religious right in US politics.  In his new book- Souled Out: Reclaiming Faith & Politics After the Religious Right, he makes the case that they have once again shot their wad and they are retreating from political activism.  Good evidence of this can be seen in their low primary turnouts.  I asked him after the show why he thought this was happening. He said that the Bush Administration was a failed presidency and that failed presidents tend to take their political ideology with them.  He compared it to Carter who perceived as a liberal [although he wasn’t] went out as a failed president and thus ended the liberal ‘experiment’ and ushered in the new neo-con paradigm.  Large numbers of evangelicals are disillusioned and aren’t showing up to vote.   I feel like I have to broadcast something positive every now and then.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore and Town Hall Seattle

Paul Wright and Silja Talvi: Who Makes Money from Mass Incarceration? Monday 4/28/08 8-9pm PST

Paul Wright and Silja Talvi: Who Makes Money from Mass Incarceration?
Getting back to our series on the “War at Home”, this week’s show features Paul Wright founder and editor of Prison Legal News who breaks new ground by exposing the various corporate scams involved in the warehousing of 2.3 million, mostly poor people in the US.  This is not only a vestige of a brutal class war but in itself represents a huge transfer of wealth- $80B per year in operating costs and almost a trillion dollars since 1980 for prison construction that could just as easily be spent on education, the single most important factor in keeping people out of prison.  One aspect that people rarely think about is how prisons are financed by massive bond issues which in themselves represent a direct transfer of wealth from taxpayers to wealthy bond owners and Wall Street bankers and traders.  A robbery of limited credit resources needed for other infrastructure.  A 200M dollar prison will cost upwards of 260M over the life of the bonds.

This is just the beginning of a long list of scams and rip-offs of the public treasury outlined in his exposé of the Prison Industrial Complex: Prison Profiteers: Who Makes Money from Mass Incarceration.   There is the private prison industry itself, one of the fastest growing and most profitable sectors on Wall Street as well as corporations that profit from prison slave labor.  Like the ‘Masters of War’ these industries profit directly off of human misery and therefore have a direct vested interest in lobbying for stiffer sentences, maintaining the phony drug war, and against sentencing reform.

Joining Paul Wright in this program is award winning investigative journalist Silja Talvi, senior editor at In These Times and author of the recent book Women Behind Bars: The Crisis of Women in the U.S. Prison System who talks about the unprecedented growth of women in prison [mostly for nonviolent drug related crimes] and the scandelous conditions they have to endure.

Arjun Makhijani- Roadmap to the Future: Carbon and Nuclear Free in 30 years!  Monday 4/21/08 8-9 PM PST

Arjun Makhijani talks about his book Carbon-Free and Nuclear-Free: A Roadmap for U. S. Energy Policy
Regular viewers of Pirate TV will recall the program I did with the climate scientist David Wasdell who is one of the world’s leading experts on feedback dynamics in global climate change.  It is now apparent that Mr. Wasdell’s research was closer to the mark than most of the climate models.  Climate change is now accelerating far faster than even the direst forecasters were predicting even a year ago.  That’s because climate models have heretofore failed to take feedback dynamics fully into account.  Even the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report dubbed the most comprehensive compilation of knowledge by the world’s leading climate scientists -horrific as it is, falls far short as Mr. Wasdell has documented because it refuses to address this most crucial issue.  Mr. Wasdell asserts that this was deliberate.  That’s because the IPCC report is not a scientific document representing the consensus of the world’s scientists but a political document chartered by the UN which in fact represents the consensus of the world’s governments.  These governments include for instance ours and that of China and Saudi Arabia which exerted their influence to “repress” the science as much as they could.  The alarming data is piling up so fast that even Mr. Wasdell has had to recalculate his assessment twice that I know of since that show was originally broadcast almost two years ago.  At the time I predicted that a massive last ditch effort to save the planet would be inevitable at some point or other.  It is becoming more and more obvious that the last ditch is now.

That’s the bad news.  But there’s good news.  In spite of what some of the most respected thinkers have been saying- that there is no where near enough energy in green alternatives to run our civilization without fossil fuels, no one had actually taken the time to add up the numbers to see whether it could be possible let alone economically feasible.  That is, until now.  Thanks to a landmark study just published by the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, commissioned by Helen Caldicott and her Nuclear Policy Research Institute, with input from some of the most experienced and visionary energy policy experts in the country, it now appears that it is possible for the United States to get to a zero carbon economy in as little as 30 years and eliminate nuclear power to boot!   The study- Carbon-Free and Nuclear-Free: A Roadmap for U.S. Energy Policy can be downloaded for free at the IEER website.  Dr. Arjun Makhijani is a scientist of extraordinary renown, the President of IEER, and the author of the book.  He gave this talk at the Seattle Town Hall this week sponsored by the Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility and the Washington State Department of Ecology.  He explains why it is absolutely necessary for the United States to do this and that only the US can lead the way.  Dr. Makhijani not only shows us that it can be done but lays out exactly how.  It’s about time we had some good news.  Now that the science has been done, it’s up to us to do the politics.

Thanks to Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, the Washington State Department of Ecology, and Town Hall Seattle

A Nastier NAFTA: The Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America, Monday 4/14/08 8-9pm PST

A Nastier NAFTA: The Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America
Welcome to the SuperSecretNeo-LiberalNeo-ConservativeAutocraticFullyPrivatizedFullyIntegratedTrilateralMilitaryCorporateFreeTradeMachiladoraNarcoSecurityState.  Where is it?  You’re there. But you say, you thought you were safe from further free trade deals for the time being?  After the nasty stink left by the NAFTA and WTO ruses, public opinion has so soured on “free-trade” that even that fully owned corporate subsidiary (Congress) knows better than to attempt to pass any more, especially in an election year.  After all didn’t Nancy Pelosi just quash the Colombia Free Trade Agreement?  That’s right.  That’s exactly why the corporatocracy decided to take Congress out of the loop and implement this super expansion of NAFTA in secret and solely by executive fiat.  –Hopefully without debate, scrutiny, or public awareness.

In case you hadn’t noticed, by some strange coincidence all three counties, Mexico, Canada, and the US just happen to find themselves currently ruled by unpopular right wing leaders.  They may be weak politically but they still have control over their vast array of executive agencies.  They need to tie up the last laces on our fascist straight jacket while the tying is still good and they’ve been busy doing it for the last 3 years.  The three of them, Bush, Fox, Harper and a gaggle of corporate CEO’s will hold the third SPP implementation summit in New Orleans April 21st and 22nd.  Fair trade and social justice activists are organizing a “People’s Summit” to coincide with the trade summit.  I repeat, this is not a meeting to discuss a future trade treaty to be ratified by the Senate, it’s a military/corporate power/land grab that is already in process.  Your Congressperson may not even know about it but several State legislatures have found out and already passed anti SPP legislation.

On April 3rd the Community Alliance for Global Justice hosted the Global Exchange SPP speaker tour at the Seattle Labor Temple.  The three speakers included: Carleen Pickard, Regional Organizer, Council of Canadians; Hector Sánchez, the Policy Education Coordinator, Global Exchange's Mexico Program; and John Gibler, Global Exchange Human Rights fellow in Mexico.   Pirate TV was there.   This program largely focuses on the unbelievable devastation the NAFTA has already had on Mexico and gives a general overview of the SPP.   The originally scheduled speaker, Manuel Pérez Rocha from the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington D.C had to cancel and was replaced by John Gibler.  In addition to his Human Rights work for Global Exchange, Gibler is an independent journalist who has written for Z Magazine, In These Times, Yes Magazine, Narco News, and has appeared on Democracy Now and Flashpoints Radio.   By coincidence he is an expert on one of Pirate TV’s long running favorite subjects: the narco economy supported by the phony “War on Drugs”.   He explores the effects and implications of the integration of the US economy and political system with the third world narco state that is Mexico.  The economic Free Trade paradigm in Mexico or Colombia cannot be correctly understood without including this piece of the equation since most of the export earnings of these two countries come from drugs.  And that is precisely the piece that for some strange reason is never discussed.
Read up on the SPP:  
Integrate This  
Alliance for Democracy  
Alliance for Responsible Trade
SPP Agent Provocateur Cops Caught Red Handed Attempting To Incite Violence

David Smith-Ferri: Battlefield without Borders, Monday 4/7/08 8-9pm PST

David Smith-Ferri: Battlefield without Borders
Poet David Smith-Ferri shares poetry and images of civilian victims of the US invasion and occupation of Iraq.  David traveled to Iraq, Jordan and Syria to put a human face on the Diaspora that is one of the consequences of US aggression systematically excluded from US public consciousness.  Funds from his book of poetry, Battlefield without Borders go to support the Direct Aid Initiative.  DAI is a program of the Middle East Cultural and Charitable Society founded in partnership with Electronic Iraq to provide aid and medical care to increasingly desperate Iraqi refugees.

Thanks to Interfaith Network of Concern for the Iraqi People, Western Washington Fellowship of Reconciliation, and Seattle Public Library

See also: http:///www.snowcoalition.org or info@snowcoalition.org

Money for Nothing, Monday 3/31/08 8-9pm PST

Now that we understand a little more about the importance of music and how it affects the brain, as promised, we now take a look at how music is controlled.  -Specifically, the political economy of the music industry and how media consolidation has changed it for the worse.  This week’s extraordinary documentary comes courtesy of the Media Education Foundation.


Of all mass cultural forms, popular music has historically been characterized by the greatest independence for artists and allowing access to a broader diversity of voices. However, in the contemporary period, this independence is being threatened by a shrinking number of record companies, the centralization of radio ownership and playlists, and the increasing integration of popular music into the broader advertising and commercial aspects of the market.

Narrated by Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth, Money for Nothing features interviews with hip-hop legend and pioneer Chuck D, respected independent artist Ani DiFranco, Michael Franti of Spearhead, and Riot Grrrl co-founder Kathleen Hanna (of Bikini Kill and Le Tigre). It also includes interviews with popular music historian Professor Reebee Garafolo, ex-Rolling Stone editor Dave Marsh, political economist Robert W. McChesney, and Shirley Halperin, editor of BOP magazine.

Money for Nothing succinctly explains how popular music is produced and marketed, and offers an accessible critique of the current state of popular music.

SECTIONS: The Music Industry / The Gatekeepers: Radio, MTV, Touring, Retail / Music, Advertising, Marketing / Alternatives

Dr. Oliver Sacks- Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, Monday 3/24/08 8-9 PM PST

Dr. Oliver Sacks- Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain

What is music?  Music is something that is so essential to the human experience that it is no exaggeration to say that it is one of the elements that define us as human.  Most of us couldn’t make it through the day without it yet could anyone define precisely what it is?  Many have tried- something about a universal language of structured sound- the language of the soul, etc. but that doesn’t quite get it.  You could break it down and try to define it by its components; the scales, cord structures, intervals, rhythm, harmony, etc. but that doesn’t come anywhere near explaining why it affects us so.  What makes it do what it does?  Why does one collection of organized sounds [piece of music] make us feel one way and other one another?  Minor chords make you feel sad.  Major chords make you feel glad.  Groovin’ music makes you want to dance.  Deep music makes you feel deep.  Dissonant music makes you feel distressed.  These are just some of the most basic ways music physically affects the human brain that scientists with modern instruments can now quantify in real time, but none can explain why.

It’s been there since the beginning.  It probably predates language but like most things musical, as Charlie Mingus pointed out, it’s hard to talk about.  Words are inadequate tools for the job yet every one of us not only recognizes music when we hear it, it’s almost impossible to escape its powerful effects.  For instance, how many of us have had the experience of being suddenly and inexplicably overcome by melancholy only to realize that it is some music in the background on the TV perhaps in another room or some other sound source that we may not have even been consciously aware of?

So what is it?  Unfortunately not even an esteemed neurologist like Oliver Sacks can answer that question.  –But you need a neurologist because the answer is intrinsic to the very structure of the brain.  So this week Pirate TV explores the nature of music with Oliver Sacks and his new book Musicophilia.  Sacks became world famous when his remarkable book Awakenings was adapted to a feature length film in 1990 starring Robert DeNiro and Robin Williams.  The film was nominated for three achademy awards.   Best known as an author of such books as The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, A Leg to Stand On, An Anthropologist on Mars, Seeing Voices, and more, he is most importantly a practicing doctor who teaches us about the brain by writing about his patients.

Some of you may be wondering what this all has to do with politics.  After all Pirate TV is a political show.  Is this just an indulgence?  In truth, yes, I reserve the right to indulge from time to time.  However, everything is political.  Music is a powerful tool for many purposes.  One issue is the issue of control and manipulation.  We’re going to delve into the political economy of the music industry and the media consolidation angle next week.  But as a music educator, I can tell you that the subject of how music enhances brain development and function is widely discussed not only amongst band directors but other teachers, administrators, parents, and even school board members.  It’s a subject that I’m keenly interested in.  The reason is, while I may strive to develop my students into first rate musicians, I recognize that very few of them will actually become world class.  I can take heart in the knowledge that all of their lives will be enhanced in ways too numerous to know by the study of music.  That is one reason why music study has been considered for centuries to be an essential element of a liberal education.

Herein lies another important political aspect.  Our city schools are under funded.  Every time they try to cut back on music and arts programs the parents raise hell and force them to reconsider.  They seem instinctively to understand that the notion in the conservative world view that education should only be about reading, writing and arithmetic is a lie.  It goes right along with the notion that the purpose of your life is for their enrichment rather than yours.  I.e. they only want to educate you enough to be a good slave.  It was Jonathan Kozol who best illuminated on this show the harm done by incessant testing regimes which force teachers to spend up to half their curriculum sometimes prepping their students for pointless tests which introduce fear and loathing, especially in young children in a place where it does not belong.  Excessive forced memorization kills children’s natural joy for learning, turns them into robots, and stifles their chances of learning to think for themselves.  It could also have something to do with why most new teachers quit within three years.  Jonathan Kozol pointed out that the “No Child Left Behind Act” was crafted in right wing think tanks for the purpose of undermining public education in this country, furthering the goal of privatization and then foisted on foolish Democrats in Congress who thought that it had something to do with education funding.  [Not!]  Cutting out the music and art seems to go right along with this agenda -the dumbing down agenda.
We can take heart in the fact that the Pacific Northwest is noted for having the best public school music programs in the world.  Our music magnet middle schools and high schools, Eckstein, Washington, Roosevelt, and Garfield regularly sweep the national contests but our music programs are outstanding throughout the entire area.  Last year the Roosevelt HS Jazz Band swept the Essentially Ellington contest in New York not only winning first place but almost all the categories as well.  It’s because parents and educators alike understand that music and its study is powerful medicine.  -So here’s to you Seattle.  When it’s all said and done, let it be known that I was proud to say I was from here.  The city that kicked the WTO’s ass and loved their children enough to give them the gift of music!

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books and Seattle Public Library

Michael Weinstein- With God on Our Side, Monday 3/17/08 8-9 PM PST

With God on Our Side: One Man's War Against an Evangelical Coup in America's Military
Michael Weinstein talks about the stealth takeover of the US military by “Premillenial Dispensational Reconstructionist Domionist Evangelical Fundamentalist Christians”.  A graduate of the US Air Force academy, Weinstein is an attorney and former JAG officer.  He is the founder of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation which defends victims of wide spread religious persecution within the military.  His book, With God on Our Side: One Man's War Against an Evangelical Coup in America's Military is an exposé of the systematic program of indoctrination sanctioned, coordinated, and carried out by fundamentalist Christians within the U.S. military with support of the Bush Administration.  Be prepared for a shock.  Few Americans are aware of the extent to which this take-over is a fait accompli.

Thanks to the Seattle Chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State [http://www.auseattle.org]

Seattle Town Hall and Elliott Bay Book Company

Alice Rothchild: Broken Promises, Broken Dreams, Monday 3/10/08 8-9pm PST

Broken Promises, Broken Dreams: Stories of Jewish and Palestinian Trauma and Resilience

As we saw pictures of the brutal violence waged on the defenseless civilians -mostly women and children of occupied Gaza by the Israeli Defense Forces this past weekend, it’s important to remember that viciousness of this magnitude occurs in Iraq as a result of the US invasion and occupation daily.  One can only hope that the rest of the world doesn’t hate us for the crimes committed by our out-of-control government.  After all, close to 80% of the US public want us out of Iraq now.  Surprisingly, the numbers are similar in Israel.  68% of Israelis now want a cease-fire with Hamas and peace talks toward ending the occupation.  I must point out that this observation is living proof that the highly touted notion that these two countries are ‘democracies’ is at best overrated.  –But I digress.

It’s also important to remember that peace and justice activists of outstanding skill, courage, heart, and good will can be found everywhere whether it is in Israel, Palestine, or here in the US.  One of the most extraordinary of these that I have come across lately is Alice Rothchild.   I struggled for quite a while with the task of making subtitles for this show because her accomplishments are so numerous that to list them all would have taken up the entire screen several times.  Sheesh –and I thought I was busy!  The best I can do is point you to her website where you can read her bio.  Suffice it to say, Alice is a physician who currently teaches Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology at Harvard Medical School.  Raised in an Orthodox Jewish family, she became a political activist in the 60s.  This eventually led her to examine her beliefs regarding the Israeli occupation of Palestine and to become a champion of Palestinian rights.

A staunch feminist and health care advocate, she helped create and ran several organizations to provide health care for low income women and families and advocate for health care reform.  So it is not surprising that she was also instrumental in creating several Jewish peace groups to advocate for human rights and an end to the occupation.  Among these are Jewish Voice for Peace, Boston and the Jewish American Medical Project, now the JVP Health and Human Rights Project.  Her new book- Broken Promises, Broken Dreams: Stories of Jewish and Palestinian Trauma and Resilience is the story of her journey from Zionist to advocate for Palestinian rights as well as her many journeys [most recently in November] to Israel and Palestine and the stories of the people she encountered along the way.  She says that she wrote this book as a means to open a conversation for people who are “struggling and uncomfortable with this topic and don’t know where to begin”.   Yes, someone needs to do that. 

Join us for an inside look at the peace movement within Israel and the Jewish community and an expert analysis of the current situation.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

Norman Solomon- Made Love, Got War, Monday 3/3/08 8-9pm PST

Norman Solomon- Made Love, Got War: Close Encounters with America's Warfare State

They say the more things change, the more they stay the same.  As we approach the back end of middle age, those of us who came up in the 60s may be wondering what the hell happened.  We thought we had changed the world or at least stopped the war.  But it seems that although we may have stopped a war we didn’t stop the war machine so the war just migrated to a hundred other places.  Maybe we brought down a President or two but in exchange we got a succession of ones that were unbelievably worse.  In fact, it’s hard to comprehend how things could have turned out more radically different than we had imagined.  So what the hell did happen?

Here with us to ponder this is none other than Norman Solomon, the Founder and Executive Director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, Co/founder of FAIR [Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting] and a prolific author.  His latest book is Made Love, Got War: Close Encounters with America's Warfare State.   Join us for a stroll down memory lane –back to the 50’s and 60’s.  It still is the 60’s, only 50 years later.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

Aidan Delgado The Sutras of Abu Ghraib, Monday, 2/25/08 8-9pm PST

 The Sutras of Abu Ghraib: Notes from a Conscientious Objector in Iraq

Aidan Delgado talks about his tour in Iraq and what he witnessed there stationed at Abu Ghraib prison during the period of the worst atrocities.  This experience drove him to apply for conscientious objector status which further complicated matters.  Aidan was in town reading from his new book: The Sutras of Abu Ghraib: Notes from a Conscientious Objector in Iraq and in conjunction with the opening of a documentary at the Seattle Film Festival about what he and three other soldiers experienced when they became conscientious objectors.   The film, Soldiers of Conscience won several awards.  [See: www.socfilm.com]  Aidan, now an active member of Iraq Veterans Against the War and the Buddhist Peace Fellowship has an interesting perspective.  As a Buddhist, the least violent of all religions, one wonders why he would join the military in the first place –which is exactly what I asked him.  His practice may not have made him enlightened enough to prevent him from falling victim to propaganda and faux patriotism but it definitely appears to have helped him to deal with the wounds to his psyche that resulted from his mistake and come out fighting as an activist.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

Cathy Wilkerson- Flying Close to the Sun: My Life and Times as a Weatherman, Monday 2/18/08 8-9pm PST

Cathy Wilkerson- Flying Close to the Sun- My Life and Times as a Weatherman

This week Pirate Television delves deeper into our series on the war at home as we examine how the violent attacks on the black liberation and antiwar struggles of the 60s led to open and violent rebellion.  Like the shut down of the Viet Nam war by the massive rebellion within the military, this is a history that is little known and not widely understood.  It has been largely erased from the consciousness of a population naive enough to think that an election dog and pony show could actually get us out of what they don’t realize we are in.

Consider this, while “murder incorporated” was busily slaughtering 3 or 4 million South East Asians as well as another million of their opposition in Indonesia, brutally installing fascist torture regimes all over South and Central America and everywhere they could get away with it, they were systematically wiping out their opposition in this country.  Much of this was accomplished by less than lethal violence of the sort we see in PATRIOT Act America today with the secret police tactics of the FBI’s Cointelpro operation, but in large part this was carried out by assassinating the best and the brightest of the peace and justice struggle.  -Those whom they couldn’t railroad into prison or beat into submission, they simply took out.  As time goes on and more information comes out about our forbidden history, the more we learn what we already knew back then.  What happened to Martin and Malcolm was in no way different than what happened to Fred Hampton.  -And almost certainly authored by the same powers that did in John and Bobby as well as countless others we will never know about, heads crushed and disappeared by Daley’s pigs at the Chicago convention for instance.         

As Cathy Wilkerson tells it, it was this realization, brought home by the brazen state murder of Fred Hampton and many others that convinced her and thousands of her compatriots that it was time to shoot back and that the war machine had to be forced to pay a price for its crimes.  Contrary to popular myth, this idea did not originate with the Weathermen.   There were already fire bombings of recruiting stations, Bank of Americas, and other symbols of corporate war profit going on at a rate of two or three a day.  The Weathermen simply decided that they were going to take it to the next level and that they could do it bigger and better.   The plan was to attack the military directly; not the hapless draftees, but the officer corps.  There were loosely affiliated Weathermen cells springing up all over the country.  Unfortunately, her small group only succeeded in blowing up themselves.  The incident which destroyed her father’s townhouse won her a seat on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted List in 1970.  The law, they never got her.  She hid out underground until she turned herself in a decade later.  She served 11 months hard time of a 3 year sentence and spent the next 20 years teaching math in NY City public schools.  She spent the last 7 years working on her memoir which is no doubt the definitive history of the Weathermen.  She has appeared in many documentaries.  You need to hear what she has to say.  We can’t understand our times without understanding hers.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Edwidge Danticat- Brother, I'm Dying, Monday 2/11/07 8-9pm PST

 Edwidge Danticat- Brother, I'm Dying; National Book Award, best autobiography

Pirate TV returns to our series on the war at home with the story told by Haitian-born author Edwidge Danticat of her beloved uncle who died in the hands of the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).  He had been coming to the US for 30 years and had a valid visa but victimized by militias in Haiti, it seems he made the mistake of applying for temporary political asylum and was tossed into immigrant prison.  Deprived of his medicine, he was soon dead.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Wall of Shame and Azmi Bashira, Monday, 2/4/08 8-9pm PST

 Wall of Shame and Interview with Azmi Bashira

A few years back I had a roommate of Jewish ancestry who told me the story of a very old man he saw at a demonstration.   The old man clearly had a number tattooed on his arm and was carrying a sign that proclaimed that he had not survived the Holocaust in order to do the same thing to Palestinians that the Germans had done to him.

When I see the starving residents of Gaza streaming into Egypt by the thousands through a hole blown in the wall only for a fleeting moment before they are once again sealed up in their apartheid prison, securing desperately needed food, fuel and medical supplies blockaded by the Israeli occupation state, I cannot escape the unmistakable spectre of the Warsaw Ghetto.

So this week we take a short break from our series on the war at home to examine the Ghetto that is Palestine by showing two films from Alternative Focus.  The Alternative Focus production company was founded by three film makers, a Jew, a Christian and a Muslim who are working together for peace and justice by offering media to the American public which shows another side of Middle Eastern issues.  Wall of Shame examines the implications of the Israeli attempt to fence in the entirety of Palestine with the construction of the “apartheid wall”.   Then, an interview with Azmi Bishara who represents Israel’s Palestinian minority in the Knesset exposes the institutional inequality and racism that forms the basis of the Jewish state.

See: www.alternatefocus.org

Above the Law part 1, Monday 1/21/08 8-9PM PST

Above the Law part 2, Monday 1/28/08 8-9PM PST

 Juanita Young, Nicholas Heyward Sr., Ophelia Randall Ealy, and Ivan Morgan talk about the murder of their children by police Juanita Young, Nicholas Heyward Sr., Ophelia Randall Ealy, and Ivan Morgan talk about the murder of their children by police

This week and next Pirate Television continues our look at the war at home with an examination of police brutality and murder.  Juanita Young a black mother from New York who was recently awarded a $10 million judgment (still under appeal) in her wrongful death lawsuit over the NYPD killing of her son Malcolm Ferguson was recently in Seattle.  We will hear the story of how an NYPD officer executed her son in cold blood and got away with it and how the police beat her close to death when she took legal action against the NYPD for which she was recently awarded another million dollar judgment.  Nicholas Heyward Sr., whose son Nicholas Jr. was killed by NYC Housing Police in 1994, will tell us about his case as well as two others: Ophelia Randall Ealy, and Ivan Morgan who’s children were brutally murdered by Seattle and King County Police.

What struck me about this is that it is almost impossible to win justice in these types of cases.  The cop who killed Juanita Young’s son virtually admitted that he executed Malcolm Ferguson for no good reason yet to this day he has never been charged with a crime.  If Juanita is successful in collecting the judgment that the jury awarded her it will not bring back her son and it will be us, the taxpayers who will pay.   All of these people suffered harassment and several of them were brutally beaten when they refused to shut up and quietly accept the murder of their children.

The October 22nd Coalition to Stop Police Brutality is a national support group organized by and for the victims of police violence.  They keep statistics on police murder and produce a booklet called “Stolen Lives” which matches faces with these numbers.

Contact the October 22nd Coalition:

National: 1-888-662-7782 info@october22.org

Seattle: 206-264-5527 oct22seattle@hotmail.com

Jules Boykoff & Kristian Williams- The New State Repression, Monday 1/14/08 8-9PM PST 
Jules Boykoff & Kristian Williams- The New State Repression
Over the next two months Pirate TV will take a close look at the war at home with particular emphasis on the role played by police violence.  We begin this week with Political Scientist Jules Boykoff, Assistant Professor, Department of Politics and Government at Pacific University who has authored the recent book: Beyond Bullets: The Suppression of Dissent in the United States.  He talks about how the regime suppresses the rising tide of popular resentment.  The discussion is shared by Kristian Williams author of American Methods: Torture and the Logic of Domination who discusses the findings of his latest book: Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Dr. Helen Caldicott- Nuclear Power is Not the Answer, Monday 1/7/08 8-9 PM PST

Dr. Helen Caldicott- Nuclear Power is Not the Answer
Helen Caldicott, Co-founder of the Physicians for Social Responsibility, world's leading spokesperson for the antinuclear movement, Nobel Peace Prize nominee, and bestselling author, dispenses with the notion that nuclear power is an option to replace fossil fuels for solving the climate crisis.  Assessing the risks and benefits of nuclear power, she concludes that nuclear power is not sustainable, creates more greenhouse gas than it offsets and that the risk of catastrophic accident or attack far outweighs any benefits.

Thanks to: Town Hall Future of Public Health Series, Antioch University, Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, and Ken Slusher for filming the event. See: www.openmondays.com

See also: www.helencaldicott.com

Carl Bernstein- A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton, Monday 12/24/07 8-9 PM PST

A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton
The famed Washington Post reporter who with Bob Woodward exposed the Watergate break-in and ended the Presidency of Richard Nixon has spent the last 7 years investigating the life of Hillary Clinton.  He has produced a 640 page book.  As he points out, while certainly Hillary has her passionate supporters and fervent detractors one thing is for sure.  Not a lot is known about the life of the woman who may well be the next president.  So here is your chance to find out everything you want to know about Hillary Clinton.

Amrit Singh- Administration of Torture, Monday 12/17/07 8-9 PM PST

Amrit Singh- Administration of Torture
Amrit Singh shows through government documents obtained by the ACLU through FOIA and subsequent lawsuits, the grim reality of the torture and abuse of prisoners held in U.S. custody abroad and why there is no doubt that the Bush Administration is prosecutable for war crimes.  –The book which she co/authored with Jameel Jaffer is Administration of Torture: A Documentary Record from Washington to Abu Ghraib and Beyond.

From ACLU.org:

Administration of Torture is the most detailed account thus far of what took place in America's overseas detention centers and why. Jameel Jaffer and Amrit Singh draw the connection between the policies adopted by senior civilian and military officials and the torture and abuse that took place on the ground. They also collect and reproduce hundreds of government documents—including interrogation directives, FBI e-mails, autopsy reports, and investigative files—obtained by the ACLU and its partners through the Freedom of Information Act. The documents show that abuse of prisoners was not limited to Abu Ghraib but was pervasive in U.S. detention facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan and at Guantánamo Bay. Even more disturbing, the documents reveal that senior officials endorsed the abuse of prisoners as a matter of policy-sometimes by tolerating it, sometimes by encouraging it, and sometimes by expressly authorizing it. The documents constitute both an important historical record and a profound indictment of the Bush administration's policies with respect to the treatment of prisoners in U.S. custody abroad.

Amrit Singh is a Staff Attorney at the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project, where she has litigated cases relating to the torture and abuse of prisoners held in U.S. custody abroad, the government's use of diplomatic assurances to return individuals to countries known to employ torture, the indefinite and mandatory detention of immigrants, and post 9/11 discrimination against immigrants. She is counsel, among other cases, in ACLU v. Dep't of Defense, litigation under the Freedom of Information Act for records concerning the treatment and detention of prisoners held by the U.S. in Afghanistan, Iraq, Guantánamo Bay and other locations abroad; and Ali v. Rumsfeld, a lawsuit brought against senior U.S. government officials on behalf of Iraqi and Afghan prisoners who were tortured in U.S. custody. Prior to joining the Immigrants' Rights Project, Singh litigated a variety of racial justice issues as the Karpatkin Fellow at the National Legal Department of the ACLU, including post 9/11 airline discrimination against brown-skinned passengers and the failure of the state of Montana to provide adequate legal counsel to indigent criminal defendants. Prior to joining the ACLU, she served as a law clerk to the Hon. Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum, United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Singh is a graduate of Cambridge University, Oxford University, and Yale Law School.

Thanks to Seattle Town Hall, Elliott Bay Books and the ACLU of Washington

Special Broadcast: David Barsamian- What We Say Goes, Monday 12/10/07 3-5 pm PST

What We Say Goes
I think I first met David Barsamian in 1999.  We were building the Independent Media Center in preparation for the WTO and Dave was there, encouraging us, telling his story.  With his weekly Alternative Radio show, [starting in 1986] he was one of the first to provide a platform for the most essential but censored voices of our times.  Pushing onto the mainstream airwaves, voices like those of Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Michael Parenti, and thousands of others almost never heard on Corporate TV or radio and rarely even on PBS or NPR.  Dave did this by coming up with the brilliant idea of giving it to them free.  It was an offer they couldn’t refuse.  He supports his whole operation by selling his recordings to listeners.  He is an unstoppable bundle of energy.  It seems nobody was able to stop him when he was here this time either.  The Town Hall talk that I taped on October 28th went on for two hours.  Fortunately, the people at SCAN have been co/sponsoring some of these extra long programs and providing me with special slots.  If you have found these valuable, an email or call to SCAN to show your appreciation could go a long way.

This time Dave was here with two new books.  What We Say Goes: Conversations on U.S. Power in a Changing World is a compendium of his recent conversations with Noam Chomsky and Targeting Iran includes Chomsky, along with Ervand Abrahamian and Nahid Mozaffari.  Because of the threat of an attack, Dave spent the most time talking about Iran.  You will want to hear what he had to say.  Although you may think that because of the recent release of the National Intelligence Estimate exposing the myth of an Iranian nuclear weapons program, the threat is over.   It doesn’t appear to be stopping the Bush Administration from pursuing their goals of war.   It could still happen.  The nuclear weapons cover story has nothing to do with why Bush wants to bomb Iran.  All the forces are deployed and on hair trigger.  Dave pointed out that domination of Iran is not just a neo-con pipe dream but longstanding bi-partisan foreign policy consensus.  It is the prerogative of empire.  If you have to work Monday afternoon, set your recording device.  Dave is always manages to blow your mind, whether it is through his essential radio program or in person.

See www.alternativeradio.org

Frances Moore Lappé- Getting a Grip, Monday 12/10/07 8-9 PM PST

Getting a Grip: Clarity, Creativity, and Courage in a World Gone Mad
I first saw Frances Moore Lappé in 1988 in an extraordinary documentary that aired on PBS called “The Politics of Food”.  Since then Frances Moore Lappé has been one of my heroes.  One of the things this documentary exposed was how US international food aid actually works to undermine food production in the very countries that the aid was supposed to be feeding.  By flooding third world countries with US subsidized grain, monopolized even in those days by huge multinational conglomerates such as ADM and Cargill, it drives local food producers out of business making the situation worse and putting these population’s very survival in the hands of government officials who can be easily corrupted by powerful interests.  This is a method of making these countries dependent on imported food and forcing economies into the export driven neo-liberal “free trade” model, thus exposing them to the whims of US commodity price manipulation and domination by IMF and World Bank Structural Adjustment Programs (SAPs).  This documentary aired eleven years before the WTO rebellion in Seattle when many of us first became aware of how the system works.

Of coarse Frances Moore Lappé is not the type of person who would leave it there.  Her endeavor to figure out a fix to these problems has led to the publishing of many important books such as the hugely popular- Diet for a Small Planet as well as Food First, World Hunger, Hope's Edge, and Democracy's Edge.  In her latest book- Getting a Grip: Clarity, Creativity, and Courage in a World Gone Mad, she tackles what we might call the politics of despair.  As she points out, it is not the fact that we are powerless that is the ultimate enemy of social progress but the fact that we think we are.  This mindset is not only counterproductive, but also dangerous.  However, people everywhere are starting to shed this frame and there are abundant examples of hope everywhere.  In spite of the corporatist aim to convince us that “there is no alternative”; in reality, the economy and the political system are not all “sewn up” even here in the belly of the beast.  The problem is, that’s not anything like what your TV is telling you.  This is why we need independent media and writers like Frances Moore Lappé, so that we can know that there are alternatives and things that we can do.

One of the most effective things that we can do to take our government back is to force big money out of politics.  I was glad to see that Frances Moore Lappé had teamed up with local organizers from Washington Public Campaigns [www.washclean.org] and had allowed them to set up a table at her talk.  Pirate TV has heralded this movement ever since the first clean elections initiative passed in the state of Maine.

"You say you want a revolution... Well you know, you better free your mind instead”, said John Lennon.  People like Frances Moore Lappé are the mind liberation experts.  She says: “It’s not possible to know what’s possible.”  So what are we afraid of?

See also: www.gettingagrip.net

and: Small Planet Institute- www.smallplanet.org

David Suzuki- Sustainability within a Generation Monday, 12/3/07 2pm – 3:30 PST

David Suzuki- Sustainability within a Generation
Presented as part of Cascadia Convergence 2007 Climate Action and Citizen Engagement program, Dr. David Suzuki, the highly regarded author (over forty books), mentor, and host of CBC Television's The Nature of Things, spoke on the subject of "Sustainability within a Generation", a document produced by the Suzuki Foundation in Canada.  Dr. David Suzuki, world-renowned sustainability guru, kicked off this 2-day event to take stock of sustainability progress in the Pacific Northwest.  A highly regarded author, mentor and TV personality, his scientific knowledge and ability to communicate with diverse audiences has earned him international acclaim.  Adopting the policy recommendations outlined in Sustainability within a Generation could safeguard our natural legacy for future generations and improve our quality of life.

see www.sustainablecascadia.org

Cynthia McKinney- Free the Jena 6! Monday, 12/3/07 8-9 PM PST

Cynthia McKinney- Free the Jena 6!
Former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney spoke at New Hope Baptist Church on the case of the Jena 6.  The November 10th speech comes on heels of pre-trial hearings for four of the Six Theodore Shaw, Robert Bailey, Bryan Purvis, and Mychal Bell.  The speech covered both the injustice of the case itself and whatever happens at the pre-trial hearing on the 7th. The case of the Jena 6 has garnered international attention shining a spotlight on the nature of this country's criminal justice system, and the continuing Jim Crow-type atmosphere in the South and other places. Nooses have been hung in several places recently, including Columbia University in New York City, sparking outrage

Jena itself has been the focus of protest, and on Sept. 20, tens of thousands of people demonstrated there and in other cities around the country to demand complete freedom for the Jena 6, and the release of Mychal Bell. A week later, after 10 months in prison, his conviction was overturned and he was granted bail. Shortly afterwards, the Louisiana judge that originally tried Bell ordered him back into custody, and is sending him back to jail for 18 months for "violating probation" from an earlier conviction. Ironically, the precise violation was his arrest in the Jena 6 incident. While the white students who started this cycle of events continue to walk free, the rest of the Jena 6 still face the prospect of long prison sentences.

Federal statistics show that many states continue to fail to report hate crimes. Congresswoman McKinney is a prominent African-American who represented Georgia 4th District from 1993 to 2003. She has spoken on both national and international justice issues, and is a firm opponent of the war in Iraq. She was defeated by the combined efforts of an unsupportive Democratic Party and Republican voters who crossed over in the Democratic Primary and voted for her opponent. She is the only member of Congress to offer Articles of Impeachment against President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and Secretary of State Rice. Recent press reports say that McKinney enrolled in the Green Party earlier this month in California, where she is a Ph.D. candidate in African-American studies at the University of California at Berkeley. A draft McKinney movement is petitioning to place her on the Green Party's 2008 presidential primary ballots. -Text by KL Shannon

Trita Parsi- Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Israel, Iran, and the U.S., Monday, 11/26/07 8-9 PM PST

Trita Parsi- Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Israel, Iran, and the U.S.
This surprisingly frank and revealing look at secret history of Middle Eastern politics and the machinations of Iran, Israel and the US comes at a crucial time.  With the US threatening an attack on Iran any day now, Trita Parsi cuts through the propaganda and non stop drum beating to lay out the real issues at stake in a way rarely discussed in US media.   That’s because Dr. Parsi possesses rare credentials that give him a keen perspective on the situation.  An Iranian reared in Sweden, he has worked for the Swedish Permanent Mission to the UN where he served in the Security Council, as well as an advisor to Congressman Bob Ney (R-OH) on Middle East issues.  He is co-founder and current President of the National Iranian American Council.

Dr. Parsi’s perspective is also unique because he is one of the few people in the US who has traveled both to Iran and Israel and interviewed top officials in these countries on the state of Israeli-Iranian relations.  He gives no quarter to any of the actors whether it is the government of Iran, US administrations, the neo-cons, or the Israelis.  Countries are not moral actors.  His analysis is pragmatic, penetrating and refreshingly clear.  He tells the history, and then lays out what an attack on Iran would mean.

I found Dr. Parsi’s talk to be so fascinating that I wish I had the additional time to broadcast all of it.  I had to edit most of the question and answer session so I stuck mostly to the questions about the invasion.  Part of what I cut out concerned the US and Israeli defeats in Iraq and Lebanon.  Has this given the Iranians and others confidence that “US domination of the region has come to an end”?  Dr. Parsi said that even European leaders quietly concede that the era of US and European domination is “no longer sustainable”, but he cautions that this is not necessarily the best news.  A Middle East left outside of the international security framework would free up long standing tensions that could erupt into a plethora of even worse destabilizing conflicts.  This is because the current paradigm is based on balance of power as in Europe, which created wars on a regular basis and lead to the worst wars in human history.  He says that the new paradigm must be based on “regional integration and collective security”.  This is bad news for US war profiteers.

Trita Parsi possesses two masters degrees and a PhD in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University, has written many articles for such publications as the Financial Times, Jane's Intelligence Review, the Globalist, the Jerusalem Post, The Forward, Bitter Lemons and the Daily Star.  He is a frequent commentator on US-Iranian relations and Middle Eastern affairs, and has appeared on BBC World News, PBS News Hour with Jim Lehrer, CNN and CNN International, Al Jazeera, C-Span, NPR, MSNBC, Voice of America and British Channel 4.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore and Seattle Town Hall

Dahr Jamail- Beyond the Green Zone, Monday 11/19/07 8-9 PM PST

Dahr Jamail- Beyond the Green Zone
Independent unembedded journalist Dahr Jamail is one of only a handful of reporters willing to take the risks to go outside the Green Zone and give us the real picture of what the US occupation of Iraq is actually doing to that country.  It’s not a pretty picture.   Dahr uses the most up to date statistics to reach the conclusion that “14 million people out of Iraq’s 23 million people are either refugees, wounded, in need of emergency assistance, or dead. That is how catastrophic the situation has become… The entire country has been eviscerated by the US led invasion and occupation.”

Republicans and their war profiteering cronies loot the treasury to murder an entire country and Democrats play politics while the corporate media refuse to mention the Cheney impeachment resolution sent to John Conyers’ Judicial Committee yesterday who says he is too busy to consider it.  Somebody is obviously being threatened with something, but it’s not news.  This is the way democracy ends, not with a bang but a whimper.   Stay tuned for the news.  This is where it is.

Dahr’s new book is: "Beyond the Green Zone: Dispatches from an Unembedded Journalist in Occupied Iraq."
See also: Dahr Jamail's MidEast Dispatches

FCC Seattle hearing on media-ownership rules- Round 3, Monday 11/12/07 8-9 PM PST

FCC Media Consolidation Hearing Seattle, 11/9/7
After being shot down twice by a groundswell of public outrage forcing the Congress to reverse most of the Republican controlled FCC’s media consolidation rule changes, followed by court rulings that finished them off completely leading to the resignation in disgrace of Chairman Michael Powell, one might think that the corporatist shills in the Bush regime would get the message that the US public will not stand for further corporate media consolidation.  But none the less, here we are again, the Republicans on the FCC are trying to change rules that restrict how many local media outlets a single company can own.  Among them: a 32-year-old regulation barring a company from owning a daily newspaper and TV or radio station in the same market.  One might think that after hearing public testimony in cities throughout the US called at the last minute in a transparent attempt to stifle turnout with opposition virtually unanimous from Republicans and Democrats alike, that this would lead the current FCC Chair Kevin Martin to think twice about attempting to ram these kinds of rule changes through again.  One would be wrong.  It is clear that the decision has already been made and that the ‘public interest’ has absolutely nothing to do with it.

It is obvious that if relaxation of ownership restrictions are allowed to go through, the only ones who will benefit are the corporate media owners themselves.  That’s why, just like the last two times, the only people who testified in favor of further consolidation were representatives of big media conglomerates.  One need look no farther than the testimony of one of these, Pamela Pearson, VP and Gen. Mgr. of KCPQ channel 13 and KMYQ channel 22 the local Fox affiliates owned by the Tribune Broadcasting national media conglomerate.  Ms. Pearson waxed on about the benefits accrued by owning two stations in one market including the financial resources that enable them to build a state of the art Doppler radar on the coast which can see weather coming 24 hours in advance.   I found myself wondering, if their radar is so good, why couldn’t they see Global Warming coming when every climate scientist in the world except those employed by the petroleum industry or their minions were sounding the alarm for the past 20 years?   That’s all you need to realize that corporate monopoly control of the mass media was a foolish notion from the onset.  To believe that you could ever trust them to "serve the public interest" when it conflicts with their interest is silly.

 It’s all about profit and nothing else.  The humiliating thrashing that Chairman Martin received yesterday from politicians of both political stripes from the Governor on down to a thousand citizens who packed the Town Hall yesterday, stretched on for 9 hours.  True, it is likely to have little effect on the Republican members of the FCC, but it does the heart good to have a little taste of it.  So I’m going to share the first hour which included all the testimony from state and local officials as well as the extraordinary statements of Democratic commissioners Copps and Adelstein.  These talks were interrupted by so much applause that I was able to cut enough out to squeeze in the statement of Chairman Martin himself who had a hard time finishing his lies and half-truths over the din of hisses and jeers.

The giant media conglomerates are the most powerful corporations in the world.  They won’t stop trying until they get their way.  Congress needs lots of cover to refuse their demands.  That’s why you need to address your correspondence to them as well as the FCC, the White House, and the presidential candidates.

For up to date information see: www.reclaimthemedia.org & http://www.freepress.net

See also: FCC Democrats Rally Consolidation Foes in Seattle http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/11/10/5146/

Pirate TV Special Broadcast: Jonathan Kozol- Letters to a Young Teacher, Monday Nov. 5th 2007  3 - 4:38 PM PST
Jonathan Kozol: Letters to a Young Teacher
Jonathan Kozol gave this extraordinary talk to a packed house at the Microsoft Auditorium at the Seattle downtown library.  The passionate children’s advocate and critic of the “No Child Left Behind” law, the one who exposed the shameful return of de facto school segregation, and the author of numerous books has authored a new one: Letters to a Young Teacher.  It is a series of sixteen letters written to a young first-grade teacher at an inner-city Boston public school.  Jonathan talked about the despicable decline of education in the United States and the heroic daily struggles waged by gifted, committed teachers who recognize the inherent value of learning and the precious gift that is every child.

Because Jonathan’s talk went on for more than an hour, I have convinced SCAN to cosponsor this show and give me a special time slot in the afternoon.  The show contains the entire talk, Q&A, and a brief interview.   For those without high speed internet access, I have tacked on Part 2 of Naomi Klein which is  the Q&A left over from her “Shock Doctrine” talk at Town Hall.  The entire program is 1:38 in length.  Set your VCRs.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books and the Washington Center for the Book at the Seattle Public Library

Thom Hartmann- Cracking the Code, Monday Nov. 5th 2007 9-9 PM PST

Thom Hartmann- Cracking the Code
Air America host and popular author Thom Hartmann talks about how ‘we the people’ can use more effective communications tools to counteract what he calls the "right wing message machine."  With their multi billion-dollar PR apparatus, an astonishing array of corporate funded think tanks, and a 30 year plan, a small minority of fascists have taken power and continue to rule the United States.  As Thomas Frank illuminated in his important book- What’s the Matter with Kansas, although their message may be 100% bogus and their agenda may be antithetical to the interests of the masses of people who naïvely vote for them, that doesn’t seem to stop it.  As we have seen, a certain percent of these voters can be written off as hopeless authoritarians who may be attracted to right wing ideology no matter what country they reside in or political choices offered.  But most are citizens who may not be the best uninformed and are therefore easily suckered by slick propaganda repeated endlessly.
How slick is it?  If you think about the trillions of dollars that the corporatists have spent on Public Relations over the last hundred years to ‘manufacture consent’, peddle consumerism, and finance a right wing takeover in the latter half of the 20th century, you can bet that it is the best money can buy.  George Lakoff exposed many aspects of this, focusing on how issues are cleverly “framed” in order to sell their agenda.  Now Thom Hartmann of whom Paul Loeb said, “No one communicates more thoughtfully or effectively on the radio airwaves” brings his considerable experience to the task.  Many people may not realize that included in his broad background as a historian, writer, and talk show host extraordinaire, Thom was once a psychotherapist and is a former advertising executive.  He is therefore well equipped to break down and analyze the psychological communications techniques that the right has employed to sell us endless war and the destruction of a century’s worth of social progress.  He is also equally suited to illuminate how we ourselves can benefit from a mastery of these same skills.  Thom’s latest book is Cracking the Code: How to Win Hearts, Change Minds, and Restore America's Original Vision.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books


Dr. Hans Blix: From a Cold War to a Cold Peace. Time for a Revival of Disarmament?  Monday October 29, 8-9 PM PST  
Dr. Hans Blix: From a Cold War to a Cold Peace. Time for a Revival of Disarmament?
Dr. Hans Blix discusses the impact of our current political climate on world affairs and shares his insight and expertise regarding instituting change via weapons control.

About Dr. Blix
Born in 1928 in Uppsala, Sweden, Dr. Blix has spent most of his career in politics and public service. Dr. Blix was appointed Executive Chairman of the United Nations Mentoring, Verification and Inspection Commission for Iraq by the UN Secretary-General from January 2000 until June 2003. In January 2004 Dr. Blix chaired the independent international Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission. He has received several honorary doctorates, is the recipient of many decorations and awards, and has written numerous books on international and constitutional law and articles relating to energy and the problematic spread of nuclear weapons.

Thanks to the UW Alumni Association


Chris Finan- From the Palmer Raids to the Patriot Act: A History of the Fight for Free Speech in America, Monday, 10/22/07 8-9 PM PST

Chris Finan, From the Palmer Raids to the Patriot Act: A History of the Fight for Free Speech in America
Those Goose Stepping Brown Shirts who rode the stocking horse of disaster to trash the Constitution and ram the [Un]PATRIOT Act through the cowardly Congress with an agenda to spy on their political enemies and everyone else may have found it a ‘piece of cake’ to get your private records without a warrant from Verizon but they met their match when they came up against the librarians.   It seems that unlike our Senators whom we were all calling but somehow never got the message, the librarians immediately knew what was at stake and never had to be called once, refusing to open library records to the FBI.

Chris Finan, president of the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, gave this talk to the Seattle Central Library in honor of Banned Books Week.  The point of this history lesson is to remind us that the free speech and privacy rights that we take for granted even as they are being systematically stripped away weren’t always what they are cracked up to be.  As he illuminates in this discourse, the meaning of free speech was scarcely understood even by the founding fathers because: “Only a few years after the passage of the first amendment one half of the founding fathers was trying to throw the other half in jail for criticizing the government.”   The free speech rights we enjoy today are the result of 200 years of struggle by civil rights activists and most of them were won in the last 50 years.  And although “W” may be too young to remember the ‘good old days’ of the McCarthy era, most certainly Dick Cheney does.  So before we allow them to turn back the clock too far it may be useful to take a look back at the long struggle to get where we are.

Thanks to Ken Slusher of Open Mondays Productions for videotaping the event, the Seattle Public Library, and the ACLU of Washington.

Christine Harold- OurSpace: Resisting the Corporate Control of Culture, Monday October 15th
8-9 PM PST

Christine Harold- Ourspace: Resisting the Corporate Control of Culture
Christine Harold talks about the role of 'culture jammers' and other strategies of resistance to “brand creep” and the corporate media takeover of culture and our minds.  Her book has been called a follow-up to Naomi Klein's No Logo.  She takes a look at parodies and shucks generated by “saboteurs and appropriators” like Adbusters, the Barbie Liberation Organization, and the Yes Men who try to “monkey wrench” the system by infiltrating the commercial media with phony ads and news stories or headline grabbing pranks replete with their own VNR’s [video news releases] and PR spokespersons as well as activists who create alternatives to the consumerist monopoly such as the Creative Commons movement, copyleft, open source technology and let’s not forget alternative media.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books 

Naomi Klein: The Shock Doctrine, Monday, 10/8/07 8-9 PM PST

Naomi Klein: The Shock Doctrine- The Rise of Disaster Capitalism
Naomi Klein hit the nail on the head the last time she was here when she said that the Iraq invasion was Corporate Globalization with bombs.  Catapulted to the center of attention in the anti-globalization movement with her book: No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies, her next book, Fences and Windows: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Globalization Debate went on to further dissect and illuminate the corporatist master plan for world domination.  In 2004, she released The Take, a feature documentary about Argentina’s occupied factories.  Now, with her new book, The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism which very well could be the most important book of the year, she manages to tie all the ends together from the CIA’s MK-Ultra mind control research, to Bush Administration torture strategy, to Shock and Awe and the deconstruction of Iraq, to the rise of Milton Friedman and the Chicago School of Economics, to the installation of Pinochet in Chile, to the economic meltdown in Argentina, to the IMF and the World Bank, to the exploitation of the 9/11 attacks, to the privatization of schools in post Katrina New Orleans.  It was the horse’s mouth himself Milton Friedman who said it: “Only a crisis, actual or perceived produces real change” and we all know what sort of change will be manufactured.  In today’s world tragedy rarely results by chance, but even chance will be milked to the fullest extent to instigate the Neo Liberal/ Neo Con economic agenda. The Bush gang is not incompetent -that’s the cover story.  Everything is proceeding as planned.

No doubt many of us have been hearing snippets in other alternative media, now get the full meal deal- a full hour with Naomi Klein recorded last week at Town Hall Seattle.  Then buy the book and feast on clarity for a week!

Naomi Klein writes for The Nation, Harper’s Magazine, The Guardian, The New York Times, In These Times, The Globe and Mail, and many others.  Other books by Naomi Klein include: Everything You Know Is Wrong: The Disinformation Guide to Secrets and Lies.

Thanks to Town Hall and Elliott Bay Books 

Pirate TV Special:
Julian Darley- Responses to Energy Descent, Tuesday Oct. 2, 2007, 9- 10:30 PM PST

Julian Darley
Many of us have heard the dire predictions of the “end of suburbia” and the “the party’s over” brought on by the compound crisis of peak oil and impending ecological collapse, but we must not allow ourselves to become paralyzed by overwhelming despair and feelings of helplessness.  There are things that can be done.  One of the people who has been on the forefront not only in defining the problems but in outlining the solutions is Julian Darley.

The Founder and Director of the Post Carbon Institute, creator of Global Public Media, and author of many books, gave this talk at the first Renewable Energy Symposium and Expo in Everett presented by Democracy for Snohomish County in August of last year.  Author of  High Noon for Natural Gas, he has since this talk come out with a new book: Relocalize Now!: Getting Ready for Climate Change and the End of Cheap Oil.

See Also:


Clean Energy Expo! Monday 9/24/07 8-9 PM PST

Clean Energy Expo
Jessica Coven from Climate Solutions, one of the people featured in this week’s show said that after working for Greenpeace and the US Climate Action Network in Washington DC for 6 years, she decided to move to the Pacific Northwest because she says this is where the action is.  I took Pirate TV to the Pacific Northwest Clean Energy Expo and was astonished at the number of green businesses already thriving in the area which are offering clean energy solutions to the global climate crisis.  These include everything from businesses which offer alternative transportation options such as electric and clean energy cars, trucks and alternative fuels, to solar building contractors, realtors and solar building technology providers as well as business such as Goods for the Planet and others which sell almost everything green you can imagine and many which you can’t imagine.

As most of us are beginning to realize, the climate crisis is much worse than we thought, but we can take heart in the fact that many of the technologies to solve this, the worst crisis in human history, already exist and many of the people on the forefront are right here in our own backyard showing us the way.   Folks, we need to become aware of them and support these businesses.   Pirate TV will be taking a close look at some of these in the near future but this week we are going to have a look at clean car options.

This week’s show features:

Jessica Coven: expert on international and federal climate policy with Climate Solutions.  www.climatesolutions.org

Mac Mc Donald: electric car expert with MC Electric Vehicles.  www.mcev.biz

Steve Lough: electric car expert with Seattle Electric Vehicle Association.  www.seattleeva.org

Pamela Burton: a net zero housing expert with Solar Washington who owns two electric cars charged by the solar panels on her house.  www.solarwashington.org
Dan Freeman: biodiesel expert, founder of Dr. Dan's Alternative Fuelwerks.  www.fuelwerks.com


Matt Schneider: who shows us his plug-in electric VW bus which he converted himself.


Dr. Robert Morris- The Blue Death, Monday 9/17/07 8-9 PM PST

Dr. Robert Morris: The Blue Death
Because the Republicans don’t believe in government and strive to self fulfill their prophesy that government doesn’t work whenever they scam their way into power, we have chronically underinvested in our infrastructure in this country over the past 30 years.  The consequences of this purposeful neglect goes well beyond collapsing levees and bridges in myriads of ways that we may not be aware of.    Add to this list the deterioration of our municipal water systems.   Dr. Robert, an environmental epidemiologist says that it is not uncommon for many cities to loose a third of their water to dilapidated infrastructure.  This is also a source of contamination.  To catch up will cost over 200 billion dollars in the next 20 years.  Add to this the effects of global warming, newly emerging and re emerging microbes, the coming fresh water shortage, and outdated treatment regimes and sooner or later the consequences are certain to be catastrophic.

In this program, the good doctor takes a look at the horrific history of waterborne disease epidemics to remind us of what we may face in the near future, not just in the third world but right here at home and what we need to be doing about it.   His new book is, The Blue Death: Disease, Disaster and the Water We Drink.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Cullen Murphy- Are We
Rome? Monday 9/10/07 8-9 PM PS

Cullen Murphy- Are We Rome?

Author, Journalist, Cullen Murphy tackles the age old question of the parallels between the current empire and that of ancient Rome.  Some have suggested that this line of thinking could be a superficial parlor game and most of us have probably been exposed to these sorts of analogies for most of our lives.  However, it doesn’t take long to realize that Mr. Murphy is as an astute a classical scholar as he is of our present predicament.  Parlor game or not, it’s downright refreshing to hear it from someone who actually knows what he is talking about.

So have we Crossed the Rubicon into Bread and Circus land with an emperor who Fiddles While Rome Burns?  Nonsense!  I say, he played air guitar while New Orleans drowned.  That’s not anywhere near the same.  But I digress; if we are indeed in Rome then maybe we should have learned better than to Do as the Romans Did by now. 

Cullen Murphy spent twenty years as managing editor of Atlantic Monthly and is now editor at large for Vanity Fair.  His new book is: Are We Rome? The Fall of an Empire and the Fate of America.
Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Robert Henson- Rough Guide to Climate Change, Monday 9/3/07 8-9 PM PST

Robert Henson
Bob Henson an atmospheric scientist, presently with the National Center for Atmospheric Research/University Corporation for Atmospheric Research in Boulder talks about climate change and what we can do.  His new book: The Rough Guide to Climate Change was sent to every MP in the United Kingdom with the provision that they respond to it in The Independent.  This book provides a complete overview of global warming and its effects, including information about the evolution of the atmosphere, visible symptoms of global warming, the role of the oil industry, review of media coverage, ongoing government intervention, perspective, views of skeptics, and much more.  Robert Henson is also the author of The Rough Guide to Weather.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

James Carroll- House of War, Monday 8/27/07 8-9 PM PST

National Book Award-winning author, novelist, and Boston Globe columnist James Carroll, talks about the history of the Pentagon and the rise of the military-industrial-congressional-media complex and the American empire.  He was here for the release of the new paperback edition of his book: House of War: “The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise of American Power”.

Following this 40 minute talk will be part two of the “Fund the Wounded, Not the War!” rally.  We will hear testimony from two soldiers recently back from Iraq- Evan Knappenberger and Dorell Roshid Michael as well as some Q&A.

 Due to the author’s request James Carroll’s talk will not be posted on the internet at this time.

 Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Fund the Wounded, Not the War! Monday, 8/20 8-9 PM PST

Fund the Wounded, Not the War
Tens of thousands of soldiers are coming home with physical and psychological injuries, including large numbers diagnosed with PTSD and other ailments. Many recent news articles have revealed that the government shamefully has not provided these veterans with an adequate level of resources and care.
From Walter Reed Army Medical Center to Veterans Administration hospitals across the country, including Seattle, inadequate funding has denied medical health professionals in the VA system the tools they need to provide world-class care to wounded vets.
This is shameful; especially coming from an Administration who is hypocritically stating they “support the troops.” It’s time to stand up and demand better funding for returning veterans and an end to the war that is causing the casualties in the first place. Let’s hold the Administration accountable for veterans’ care that they have so often promised!
Chanting “Fund the wounded not the war! What the hell is Congress for?” protesters led by activists from Iraq Veterans Against the War marched to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center here July 28 and ended with a rally featuring a panel of prominent speakers.  Pirate TV was there to document this event which included some extraordinary testimony from several health care providers and soldiers just back from Iraq.  This was the first event of its kind in the nation and represents a growing rebellion inside the military ranks.

Featured speakers include:

Chanan Suarez-Diaz, 5 yr veteran Navy Hospital Corps, was sent to Ramadi Iraq with a Marine Corps Infantry Battalion and witnessed the death and destruction of the city of Ramadi.  He is president of Iraq Veterans Against the War, Seattle Chapter

Dr. Evan Kanter, works as a psychiatrist at the VA

Dr. Nada Elia of the National Council of Arab Americans

Dave Schop, veteran active in the organizing of Vietnam veterans against that war

Cathy Schop from Military Families Speak Out

Evan Knappenberger, a former Army intelligence analyst who protested the military’s “stop-loss” policy.

Thanks to the Troops Home Now Coalition, Iraq Veterans Against the War, Veterans for Peace, the International Socialist Organization, and staff from the VA hospital


Rev. Rich Lang- The Emergency Call, Monday 8/13 8-9 PM

Rev. Rich Lang

Regular viewers will remember Rev. Rich Lang for his famous speech: “George Bush and the Rise of Christian Fascism”.  Last week Rev. Rich called an emergency meeting to “sound the alarm” and kick off a campaign of mass action.  He began the call with these words:

“We are in a grave constitutional crisis with a President who seemingly wants to be king.   This administration is building, plank by plank, the framework for military dictatorship…”

Pirate TV was at the meeting which was attended by about 300 people.  This turned out to be an extraordinary event.  We are broadcasting it next week.  Basically, Rich is calling for mass action and civil disobedience beginning this coming September 11th.  Named a FREEDOM FROM FEAR CAMPAIGN, much of the activity will be directed at the corporate media outlets which have been complicit in the march to fascism.

In solidarity with this campaign, we have posted the show in advance of the broadcast on the Pirate TV website for those with high speed connections and will continue to post all the information from Rev. Rich et al as it comes in as well as the text version of the remarkable speech he gave on this occasion.

Rev. Rich Lang is Pastor of Trinity United Methodist Church in Ballard and host of Living Faith Radio
See: http://www.livingfaithnow.org/

Matthew Rothschild- You Have No Rights, Monday 7/23/07 8-9 PM PST

Matthew Rothschild
Last week Sen. Barbara Boxer said that this is the closest we have come to a dictatorship in the United States.  This is an unprecedented statement for a US Senator.  One wonders what they are waiting for.  In this show, journalist and editor of The Progressive Magazine Matthew Rothschild talks about the rapid rise of police-state fascism in the United States.  His new book: You Have No Rights: Stories of America in an Age of Repression is a compendium of stories of ordinary people who have suffered government repression under the Bush regime for everything from wearing the wrong t-shirt and other expressions of constitutionally-protected free speech to reading the wrong publications or just being a person of the wrong religion or race in the wrong place at the wrong time.

See: www.progressive.org

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

John Dean- Conservatives Without Conscience, Monday 7/16, 8-9 PM

John Dean
[When I wrote this article, I hadn't yet read John Dean's remarkable book which to this day I consider one of the most important and illuminating I have ever read.  I've gone through and fixed some typos and rephrased a few things but have avoided rewriting the entire article.  John Dean actually does address a lot of the things I brought up either in his book or in other forums.  For instance, he says that George Lakoff's theories about the "Nurturing Parent v Strict Father Morality" dichotomy may sound good but that Lakoff does not cite scientific evidence whereas Dean says that the conclusions in his book are not theories and are backed by the studies which he cites.  He also clearly states that he believes Bush, Cheany et al and the religious fascists who have ceased control of our government are psychopaths who do not believe in egalitarianism or democratic government in any shape or form.

I think everyone who has racked their brain trying to understand the conservative mind could do no better than to start right here.  So I am going to rebroadcast this show which first aired last August and will post it on the web after the upcoming broadcast.

I'm very interested in your comments on this subject so please feel free to send them to me.  - Ed]

I said to John Dean: “They're not going to like this… because what you are saying is that modern day conservatism is much less to do with ideology and much more a personality disorder.”  He emphatically denied this and made it clear that he was not implying that these people are clinically crazy.  And of course being that his background is in a law and not medicine, he has to say that.

However, you and I know that this type of discussion puts you on a slippery slope.  The line between what's considered normal and abnormal psychologically changes day to day.   And of course nobody is “normal”.  We all have our little idiosyncrasies.  But, upon further discussion I got the impression that he [Dean] actually does think that the neo-cons are crazy at least in the generic sense and I might add- extremely dangerous.  The prototypes for him are between the G. Gordon Liddy brand of conservatism and that of his mentor Berry Goldwater.  (In my heart I knew they were BOTH crazy!)

You see it’s very simple.  You either have a grip or you don’t.  If you don’t have a grip and something within your nature makes it impossible for you to ever get one, then in my opinion you are either out of touch with reality or at the very least chronically stupid.  The result is the same whether the condition stems from a medical condition or self induced delusion.  I’ve had the misfortune of being surrounded by these types of people my entire life.  I grew up around them.  I can recall very few conservatives that you could actually sit down and have a rational conversation with without running into a brick wall of denial at some point or other.  This goes for paleo-cons, neo-cons, bigot-cons, John Birch-cons, Jingoist-cons, fundamentalist-cons and any other kind of cons you can think of.  Come to think of it, the length of time it takes to reach that point may actually be a good yardstick for gauging their capacity to perceive reality.  What’s really striking is that if you press the matter, it often becomes apparent that their purpose for engaging in conversation is not the same as yours.  Their focus is not on discovering the truth but on protecting and shoring up their own beliefs.  This can be very frustrating when it dawns on you that they really are not interested in finding out who is right.  It puts them in a conundrum because to admit this to themselves would be to face the fact that they don’t have a grip.  They seem to be able to sidestep this inconvenient item quite nimbly –that is unless you hold them to it.  Conservatives by nature do not tend to be truth seekers.

After years of wrestling with this I’ve come to the conclusion that this is in the very nature of what we think of as conservatism itself.  You could spend your entire life and get absolutely nowhere with most of these people.  I have to say that I have made headway with some of them but it took decades and any awakening that occurred probably had more to do with the intrusion of reality in their lives in a way that they simply couldn’t ignore than anything I ever said.  They like to accuse you of being as thick as they are but that’s just projection.  They’re big on that.  My working hypothesis up until now has been that this is because most forms of conservatism are the result of indoctrination of some sort or other.  I concluded that the purpose of indoctrination is to make you stupid and fodder for manipulation.  Belief systems (ideological, political, or religious) generally come as a package deal.  Therefore compromise either in the form of dissonant evidence, ideas or interests cannot be tolerated.

Liberals and progressives may hold strong beliefs but I would argue that they are generally not ideological.  Conservatives project that we are ideological since they are.  Theirs is just different than ours.  They have their “fair and balanced” media giving them their truth we have our “liberal” media giving us ours.  They have their “faith based” science; we have our science based science, etc.  What is structurally impossible for them to understand is that fact based reality has absolutely nothing to do with ideology.  Faith based reality has everything to do with ideology and nothing to do with reality.  Sorry, there can only be one reality.  Basically, for liberals, beliefs don’t trump facts and for conservatives facts don’t matter.  I could go off here into a discussion of inductive vs. deductive reasoning but I’ve been there and done that in these pages several times before.  Suffice it to say that conservatives trend toward deficiency in the rational thought department.

The simple reason why so many of them tend to be dumb as a stump is because people who go through life with blinders on cannot possibly ever learn anything.  Ignorance is built into conservatism.  

Conservatives are generally biased, thick headed, more often bigoted than not, intolerant, oppressive, dogmatic, arrogant, obstinate, autocratic and aristocratic by definition.  The more a person displays these tendencies, the more “conservative” they are deemed to be.  The interesting question is:  Which came first, ideology or pathology?  And why are certain types of people attracted to conservative doctrine and not others?  As I said, I assumed that it was because they are uninformed, dis-informed, uneducated, or brainwashed [indoctrinated].

This brings us back to John Dean.  John Dean says that the neo-cons and religious fascists who have taken over our government and the Republican Party are so radically different from traditional (Barry Goldwater) conservatives [like him] that he is far closer to us liberals.  The difference he says is that traditional conservatives believe in democratic government which is rooted in compromise, the neo-cons and the religious freaks clearly don’t.  This is due to what John Dean calls the “Authoritarian Personality”.   Authoritarians are incapable of compromise.  He has come across an interesting body of evidence.

Shortly after WWII a group of sociologists at Berkeley became concerned about whether fascism could happen here.  It can.  [See: TW Adorno et al., The Authoritarian Personality (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1950)]  They discovered that there is about 23 to 25% of the population that would follow a leader like George Bush over the edge into full blown Fascism without thinking twice (probably not even once).  [If this is true, the possibility of Bush’s ratings getting much lower has bottomed out.]  These authoritarian personalities are attracted to authoritarian leaders, ideology, or religion.  There are two scales which can be measured by psychological tests: that of the “Authoritarian Follower” and the “Authoritarian Leader”.   Authoritarian Followers trend toward submission to authority.  Authoritarian Leaders or “social dominators” are inclined to dominate others (evidence suggests that this is often due to a testosterone imbalance).  People who score high on both scales are called “Double Highs”.  This is rare in women, by the way.  Ann Coulter could be one of the exceptions.

I asked John Dean what is known about how these personalities are created.  It could be nurture or nature or varying degrees of both.  More recent studies of children have shown that children who are timid and insecure are more likely to become conservatives when they grow up.  They have a hard time tolerating diversity in people or ideas and feel more comfortable being told what to think and do.  They tend to trust authority.  Children who are the most confidant and comfortable with themselves are more likely to become liberal or progressive since they are better able to tolerate diversity and have the confidence to think for themselves, cultivate an open mind, and have consideration for others.  Authoritarian personalities are rare among liberals and progressives (about 10% at most).

I later wished I had thought to ask John Dean how this squares with George Lakoff’s theory of the conservative “Strict Father Morality” and progressive “Nurturing Parent Morality” dichotomy.  It seems to fit.  Being brought up in an authoritarian family might tend to make you timid and insecure, thus perpetuating conservatism.  A more egalitarian society might tend to turn out more progressives since more children would be raised in a secure and nurturing environment.

I disagree with John Dean’s assertion that the Neo-cons and Christian fascists are fundamentally different from the Barry Goldwater type conservatives.  [But then I don’t consider myself conservative.]  In my view, conservatism is a social dominating, authoritarian type philosophy in general.  The difference is in degree and the fact that the conservatives have managed to take total control of the government.  Let’s not forget, this is what they do every time they get power to one extent or another.  The “moderates” are miffed because they have been ejected from the Republican Party.  I think John Dean is sober enough to realize this.  Even though he can’t come right out and say it lets face it, it’s what he is really saying.   Whether or not you think authoritarianism or even conservatism is a sickness depends on how you look at it.  Sort of like the phrase: “spare the rod and spoil the child.”

I think we owe a lot to John Dean of all people for bringing this out.  The knowledge that there is scientific evidence that conservatives, especially neo-cons are authoritarians, and that a large portion of them are that way not because of some legitimate philosophical point of view but more likely because of a twisted psychological make up is useful knowledge indeed.  Viewed in this light the conservative ideology going all the way back to Edmond Burke can be seen for what it really is: the overactive musings of quivering, socially stunted, half witted assholes in need of some sort of orthodoxy to justify their naked agenda to dominate the rest of us and protect their power and privilege.  Isn’t that what we always thought?  And by the way there IS a clinical term for a person with no conscience, it’s called “psychopath”.

Sasha Abramsky- Age of Mass Imprisonment, Monday 7/9 8-9 PM PST

Sasha Abramsky -Age of Mass Imprisonment
One of the most astute scholars and critics of the prison industrial complex and criminal ‘injustice’ system in the United States is Sasha Abramsky. After Conned and Hard Time Blues, he has now written a third in the series: American Furies: Crime, Punishment, and Vengeance in the Age of Mass Imprisonment.  The prison population in the US has now risen to well over 2 million, more than half non violent victims of the phony drug war.  Sasha Abramsky says our society is defined by imprisonment.  We’re a prison society and the brutality inflicted on our values and social institutions poses a far greater threat to our future and well-being of our children than any threat from outside our borders.  Take a trip with us into the American gulag.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Michael Parenti: Lies, Wars and Empire, Sat. 7/7/07 6-7:36 PM
Michael Parenti
Those familiar with Michael Parenti know that his talks are always extraordinary.  In fact, Sally Soriano, our most radical Seattle School Board member used to have a public access show that featured his talks exclusively.  It could be that Michael Parenti is all you need.  Whether or not that's true, it is most certainly a special treat whenever we can get him.  He was in town last month and gave this talk at Antioch University as part of an open forum dialogue to foster a deeper awareness of social justice in the world today and explore the meaning of democracy in the context of global justice and the pursuit of happiness.  He spoke about democracy in the context of empire.  This talk went on for well over an hour and with Q&A it came out to 96 minutes.  So we have decided to show the entire thing at a special time and day.  Since its 4th of July week and because many people who don’t subscribe to the Pirate TV list will not know about it we are going to post the show on the Pirate TV website so that it can be downloaded immediately.

Michael Parenti appears regularly on radio and television talk shows to discuss topics ranging from democracy and economic power to terrorism and globalization. Parenti has taught at numerous colleges and universities in the U.S. and abroad and is the author of 20 books. His most recent book, Contrary Notions, is a powerful selection of his most penetrating writings on real history, political life, empire, wealth, class power, technology, culture, ideology, media, environment, sex and ethnicity. Parenti holds a Ph.D. in political science from Yale University.

Impeach! With Dave Lindorff, Elizabeth de la Vega, and Phil Burk, Monday 7/2 8-9 PM PST

Impeachment Forum with David Lindorff, Elizabeth de la Vega, & Phil Burk
As we celebrate the 231st 4th of July since the Declaration of Independence and people go about their barbecues, blithely shooting off their bombs and rockets and gulping down rivers of beer in the “Land of the Free”, how ironic it is that most of them probably haven't the slightest clue of what a hollow ritual the celebration of Independence Day has become.  -Land of the Free?   Wake up.  The last two presidential elections have been stolen by a swashbuckling gang of thieves, war criminals and cold blooded killers who occupy the White House wrapped in a flag, carrying a bible and who have trashed everything that gives the 4th of July any meaning.  Our votes no longer mean anything and the Bill of Rights and Constitution have been gutted taking the rule of law with them.   The triumph of money Uber Alles in our political system insures that we are right back where we started with taxation without representation in a state of corporate tyranny hiding behind a sham of democracy.

We may as well have a good time celebrating the hollow ritual while we can.  I know I will, but when we come back it’s time to take action to get our constitution and government back.  The first thing we need to do is force our “representatives” to impeach these criminals and put them in prison where they belong.  It should be abundantly clear by now that the worthless-Democrats are not going to do anything about anything unless we force them to.  Even the good ones can’t do anything without massive public pressure behind them.   This is the appropriate Pirate TV show for this 4th of July.

Billed as Our Constitution in Crisis: A Call to Action, this program is from a town hall meeting that occurred last Sunday and features Elizabeth de la Vega, author of United States vs. Bush et al.; Dave Lindorff, co- author of A Case for Impeachment: The Legal Guide for Removing President George W. Bush from Office; and Phil Burk, impeachment expert and founder of www.ImpeachBush.tv -an extraordinary resource.  This show is a training seminar to prepare citizens to educate others about the US Constitution and the urgent need to use the constitutional remedy of impeachment.  The organizers have dubbed this "CONSTITUTION SUMMER”.  Feel free to copy this program and pass it around.  DVD’s are available from us or through the Pirate TV website.

Thanks to:
Eastside Fellowship of Reconciliation, Washington For Impeachment, The Alliance for Democracy ---Greater Seattle Chapter, Progressive Democrats of America, Veterans for Peace, Evergreen Peace and Justice, World Can't Wait Drive Out the Bush Regime, REASON, Not a Number, Evergreen Peace and Justice Community, The Backbone Campaign, After Downing Street, Democrats.com., and Citizens' Movement to Impeach Bush and Cheney.

John Perkins, The Secret History of the American Empire, Monday 6/25, 8-9 PST

John Perkins: The Secret History of the American Empire
John Perkins provides a glimpse into the secret world of “Economic Hit Men” (EHMs) and the mercenary assassins called “Jackals”.  What the author of the bestseller, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man has to say is extremely important because he gives us an essential heretofore missing piece of the puzzle in our understanding of how the US economic empire rules the world.  Basically, as soon as a new ruler takes power in any third world country, it is determined if he [or she] can be corrupted, if he can, he is given the time honored choice between the bribe or the bullet, i.e. the offer he can’t refuse.  “Help us and the IMF rape your country and we’ll make you and your family wealthy beyond your dreams, otherwise we’ll kill you –take your choice.  If we can’t get to you covertly or by meddling in your political processes, we will starve your children by embargoing your country or invade you and bomb you to smithereens.”  If it is determined that a visit by an EHM would be futile then that part of the process is skipped and proceeds directly to option-B.  John Perkins personally participated in numerous historic examples of this.

This system of extortion would be illegal for Tony Soprano and is in fact illegal under international law but all of us who would be inclined to watch shows like Pirate TV always knew that this was going on.   We just had no idea that it is so explicit and how it exactly operates.  No example of any country that chooses to base it’s economic and trade policies on its own national interest or the welfare of its population as opposed to the interests of an elite multinational corporate oligarchy is tolerated.

If you know this, you are immune to propaganda or any cover story designed to conceal the real reasons for US actions in the world.  For instance, it is immediately obvious why the US attacked Iraq, why they ousted Aristide, why they instituted the failed coup against Chavez, and why they have maintained an embargo on Cuba for close to 50 years.  Sorry, social progress has been canceled, not only there but here.  There is no alternative to gangster rule.

The publishing of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man was an earthshaking event, a monumental act of bravery, and represents a triumph of one man’s conscience over immense pressures to keep silent.   It rips the cover off a crucial but extremely secret aspect of the US government and can be compared to Phillip Agee’s exposure of the CIA in On Company Business and James Bamford’s first time exposure of the NSA in The Puzzle PalaceJohn Perkins has done the world a huge service.  If everyone read his book, I believe the “corporatocracy” would fall within a week.   His new book, The Secret History of the American Empire: Economic Hit Men, Jackals, and the Truth About Global Corruption, delves deeper by bringing out the stories of many other EHMs and Jackals who have come forward since the publishing of his first book.  We are delighted to welcome John Perkins back to the show.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books and Seattle Town Hall

See also: www.johnperkins.org

Voices from the Frontlines - Healing the Wounds of War, Monday June 18, 8-9 PM PST

Voices from the Frontlines
We have shown the extraordinary Voices in Wartime film produced by Andy Himes.  Now as promised we are going to show what we might call part two.  This is the show we made from the Voices from the Frontlines event recorded May 5th at Seattle Town Hall.  This event featured Poetry readings and story-telling by veterans,
refugees, students and civilians and features readings by Brian Turner, Iraq War veteran, author of Here, Bullet, winner of Lannen Foundation Fellowship for Poetry,
Brian spent a year deployed in
Iraq, writing poetry and staying alive.  He returns to us with the sharpened perceptions and poetic mastery of a soldier and witness, direct from the front lines. His book, Here Bullet!, won the 2007 Poets' Prize and the 2007 PEN Center USA "Best in the West" Literary Award.  Also featuring: John Roth, writer and veteran of the Iraq War,  Emily Warn, Seattle poet and author of The Novice Insomniac,  Students from Bellevue Community College,  Khaythong Luangamath, poet and refugee from war in Laos,  Louie Praseuth from Legacies of War, and Joshua Kualalan, 12-year-old refugee from Liberia civil War.  

Healing begins with story- telling. Hope starts with sharing our experiences of war.  Trauma and sadness become opportunities to heal and learn.   With us, begin to imagine a culture of peace.

See: www.legaciesofwar.org

Peter Irons: God on Trial, Monday, 6/ll/07 8-9 PM PST

Peter Irons
Constitutional scholar Peter Irons talks about god and the law and takes a look at the rise of the religious right in politics and the role of the courts.  His new book, God on Trial: Dispatches from America's Religious Battlefields, examines numerous cases from the past few decades concerning matters of the encroachment of religion into the public square.

Peter Irons also wrote: May It Please the Court, Jim Crow's Children, and A People's History of the Supreme Court.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books and the ACLU

Charles Hardy: Cowboy in Caracas, Monday 5/28 8-9 PM PST

Charles Hardy
Charlie Hardy, a Wyoming-born Roman Catholic priest has lived in and written about Latin America for the better part of forty years and has been living in Venezuela for the past 20.  He gives the inside account of Hugo Chávez and the historical context of his “Bolivarian revolution” that you didn’t hear on corporate TV in the USA.  The corporatist regime would like you to believe that Chávez is a dictator but Charlie tells the story of why it is actually the people who rule in Venezuela and Chávez who follows them.

Dr. Catherine Thomasson- Eye Witness Iran, Monday, 5/21 8-9 PM PST

Catherine Thomasson
The Bush “Oil-igarchy” with help from the corporate media seems to be bombarding us daily with propaganda trying to drum up support for their plan to bombard Iran.  Those of us who follow this kind of thing will not be surprised at the dearth of meaningful information being presented about who it is that they are so keen to kill and once again the absolute ignorance amongst the general population about the targeted country and the consequences of war.
Catherine Thomasson, current national president of Physicians for Social Responsibility and
Portland, Oregon, physician recently returned from a trip to Iran with the Fellowship of Reconciliation.  A couple weeks ago she presented this very informative talk on the history, culture and people of Iran and shared pictures and stories of her trip.  She also included an examination of Iran’s place in the overall policy of the US to dominate the Middle East and what is driving US bi-partisan policy to target Iran.  She effectively exposes the canard that it has anything to do with nukes.
See also: www.oregonpsr.org

Laura Flanders- Blue Grit, Monday 5/14
8-9 PM

Laura Flanders
Radio Nation host Laura Flanders examines progressive grassroots movements and the struggle to take back the Democratic Party.  Her books include Bushwomen, Real Majority, Media Minority, The W Effect and the latest- Blue Grit: True Democrats Take Back Politics from the Politicians.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

John Ross- Zapatistas! Monday May 7th, 8-9 PM

John Ross
John Ross, poet, author, independent journalist, political analyst, and muckraker, has been reporting from the underbelly of Latin America for the better part of four decades. His work appears regularly in the San Francisco Bay Guardian, Noticias Aliadas (Lima), the Texas Observer, Counterpunch (on line), and La Jornada in Mexico City. Ross has lived in Mexico since 1985, and his investigations into electoral fraud, human rights abuses, environmental carnage, and the struggles of Indians and farmers have won various awards through the years. He has been a close observer of the Zapatista rebellion in Chiapas which occurred on the day the NAFTA went into effect.

John was in Seattle recently and gave a poetry and spoken word presentation in celebration of his recent book:  Zapatistas!: Making Another World Possible: Chronicles of Resistance 2000-2006.  He shared the stage with Folk singer/songwriter extraodinaire- Jim Page.  A good time was had by all.  See John and Jim in concert at the Wayward Café this week on Pirate TV.  Sit back and pretend you are in some beat-nick coffee house circa 1965 and you will be in the right groove.

Some of John’s other books include: Murdered by Capitalism: A Memoir of 150 Years of Life and Death on the American Left, The War Against Oblivion--Zapatista Chronicles 1994-2000, and Bomba!

See: www.nationbooks.org/book.mhtml?t=zapatistas

And www.jimpage.net

Benjamin Barber- Consumed, Monday 4/30 8-9 PM

Benjamin Barber
Benjamin Barber, distinguished Professor at the University of Maryland and author of 17 books including the recent Jihad vs. McWorld has written a sequel.  In his new book Consumed: How Markets Corrupt Children, Infantilize Adults, and Swallow Citizens Whole, he explores the effects of globalfreetradeconsumercapitalism on people, society and democracy.  Join us for an interesting discussion.

Step It Up, Monday 4/23 8-9 PM

Step It Up
Pirate TV viewers saw Bill McKibben’s talk a couple weeks ago in which he announced his National Day of Climate Action.   He calls it the Step-It-Up campaign.  These historic demonstrations, the first of their kind aimed at pressuring Congress to step up action on climate change occurred this last Saturday 4/14 in 14 hundred cities thorough out the US.  We decided to go down to the Seattle demonstration which ended with a rally at Myrtle Edwards Park and tape the proceedings.  While we were there we ran into some of our old friends- KC Golden from Climate Solutions was MCing the event and writer Paul Lobe just happened to be lurking around afterward.  This week’s broadcast includes most of the speeches and the interview we did with Paul.  See Paul’s latest article: Target Global Warming, Target Exxon http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/04/18/595/


Jiji Jally – Representative from the Marshall Islands
Congressman Jay Inslee – Preeminent leader in the fight to stop global warming in the US congress
Ron Sims - King County Executive
Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels – Historic organizer of the US Climate Protection Agreement
Dave Freiboth - MLK Jr. County Labor Council
Emily Duncanson - Student environmental leader, founder of Kyoto in the classroom
Paul Rogat Lobe – Author of: Soul of a Citizen, and The Impossible Will Take a Little While

See Also:

Ishmael Beah -Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, Monday 4/16 8-9 PM

Ishmael Beah was 12 years old in Sierra Leone when war burst into his life.  His childhood abruptly ended on that day when his family and village were massacred by rebel forces.  Soon thereafter he was pressed into military slavery by government forces and found himself committing horrific acts along side the other children in his unit.  There may be as many as 300,000 child soldiers, hopped-up on drugs and wielding AK-47s, in more than fifty conflicts around the world.  Ishmael was one of a handful, thanks to UNICEF, who was lucky enough to find rehabilitation.  His story is at once unbelievably sad and at the same time inspiring and beautiful.  It is testament to the resilience of children and the triumph of human courage.  Ishmael went on to finish his last two years of high school in the
United States and graduate from Oberlin College with a B.A. in political science in 2004.  His book: A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier is the first to explore this awful subject from the perspective of one of its victims.

See also: www.alongwaygone.com
Thanks to
Elliott Bay Books

Congressman Dennis Kucinich at the
Labor Temple, Monday 4/9 8-9 PM

Not a lot of people knew about this April 1st appearance.  Apparently, many people from
Seattle drove to Aberdeen because Dennis’s talk there was well publicized on Air America.   So the Labor Temple in Seattle was only about a third full last Sunday.  This didn’t stop the iconoclastic Democrat from delivering the kind of fiery speech that he is well known for.  And this didn’t stop the crowd from going crazy, giving several standing ovations.  You will want to hear what he had to say about the Iraq war supplemental funding bill with the non binding resolution just passed by the House.  His beautiful wife was with him too.  I hadn’t realized that she is an expert on “free” trade, 3rd world debt, and the global monetary system.  Apparently, she worked with the Jubilee campaign for many years.  My kind of Democrats!

Bill McKibben, Deep Economy, Monday 4/2 8-9 PM

Bill McKibben predicted the disaster represented by Climate Change in 1989 in his book The End of Nature.  This was the first book on global warming.  Now he is spearheading the ‘Step It Up’ campaign which is organizing upcoming nationwide demonstrations for April 14th, dubbed the National Day of Climate Action.  These demonstrations are aimed at pressuring Congress to step up action on climate change.  See: www.stepitup2007.org  

Bill was in town last week at Town Hall talking about this and his new book Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future which addresses the inevitable paradigm shift from growth oriented economies and offers some visions of what nurturing communities rooted in traditional values and driven by ‘green’ technologies may look like.  Other books by Bill McKibben include The Age of Missing Information, and Enough.

Lynne Stewart- My Struggle for Justice in Patriot Act America, Monday 3/26,
8-9 PM

Fascist regimes cannot survive without fear, ignorance, and apathy.  Lynne Stewart was prosecuted in a political show trial by the criminal Ashcroft Justice Department in an obvious attempt to send a message to defense attorneys who harbor notions of taking their job too seriously and as part of the Bush Administration’s ongoing campaign to ratchet up fear of terrorism in the general population.  Lynne Stewart received a 28 month sentence for “abetting terrorism”.  She was accused of acting as a go between by delivering a message to terrorist organizations from her client, the “Blind Sheik” Abdel-Rahmen.  In fact, she delivered a press release to the press.  She says that she did this in order to focus attention on the Sheik who was being held in conditions which amount to torture.  Seeking 30 years, the 28 month sentence was a slap in the face to the Bush Administration who immediately challenged the judge’s decision.  Stewart is out of jail while appealing the verdict and was in
Seattle March 10th giving a talk celebrating International Women’s Day.

A life long fighter in the struggle for social justice, in her 30 year career as a criminal defense attorney, she has taken on many highly charged cases, defending Black Panthers, Weathermen, and the Black Liberation Army.  Join us for an inspiring evening with the subject of one of the most important cases of our times in the struggle to preserve [take back] the bill of rights.

Thanks to Radical Women:

See also:

Malik Rahim and Lee Flemming- Common Ground, Monday 3/19
8-9 PM Unbeknownst to most, there are 5000 Katrina refugees in the greater Seattle Area.  Most of these people have deep historic roots in New Orleans and surrounding areas.  Many owned their own houses.  Many are still paying mortgages on properties that have been wiped out and are being ripped off by the insurance companies that they had paid into for decades.  They would like to return to New Orleans but are being prevented from doing so by a deliberate ethnic cleansing campaign directed against the poor and people of color which seeks to transform the political makeup the city, a Democratic stronghold in an otherwise red state.  This process is also being driven by the endemic racism of the apartheid south and rampant corruption whereby wealthy developers, financial institutions, and land speculators have seized the opportunity of the Katrina disaster to acquire people’s properties for pennies on the dollar or by outright theft in collusion with the government.  -A government which left them to fend for themselves in the face and aftermath of the Hurricane and which refused to fund the necessary infrastructure which would have prevented the disaster in the first place.   A government which insures ever worsening and increasingly frequent disasters of this sort by deliberately ignoring, falsifying and covering up evidence, and otherwise refusing to address the looming climate crisis. For these people there is no government.  Historically, the government has been the enemy, only there to rip them off and keep them in their place.  There are no police, other than the police state.  And when disaster struck, the government sent in the army and mercenary contractors, not to distribute food and help people escape the flood but to shoot them on site for taking food in the face of starvation, food which would soon spoil anyway, and to keep them out of the white areas.

When the government is the enemy or nowhere to be found, then the people must form their own government to provide the needed services.  Enter the Common Ground Collective.  Witnessing the worst disaster of this century and deliberate government inaction and mismanagement, people of good conscience began streaming into New Orleans by the thousands from all over this great country and throughout the world.  Carpenters, college students, Veterans for Peace, activists, environmental technicians, health care workers, truck drivers, people from every walk and station in life came into the midst and in defiance of the military occupation to pitch in.  Organized by Common Ground and other grassroots organizations, they set up health clinics, provided food, water and temporary housing, gutted out and cleaned up thousand of houses to stave off the bulldozers, developed innovative state of the art methods to clean up the toxins, organized to fight the fat cats from destroying public housing and stealing the land, and are standing up against government apartheid policies, graft, and corruption.

Malik Rahim the co/founder of the Common Ground Collective was recently in the Seattle area.  He is a former Black Panther Political Prisoner and ran for Mayor as a Green.  Now he is the de facto Mayor.  Lee Flemming a civil rights activist and Katrina refugee now staying in Seattle, organized a survivor’s council for Kartina refugees in Seattle and a local chapter of Common Ground.  Next week they tell the story of what really happened in New Orleans, the story you didn’t hear in Corporate Media.  

See Also:

Impeachment Day, Monday 3/12, 8-9 PM
This is video of the Impeachment Rally held on the state capitol steps this past March 1st in support of SJM 8016 calling for a congressional investigation to impeach Bush and Cheney.  Hosted by Michael Tivana director of Eastside Fellowship for Reconciliation, the speakers include: Col. Ann Wright (Ret.)
Rocky Anderson – Mayor Salt Lake City
Linda Boyd – EFOR
Eric Oemig – Democratic bill sponsor –Senator from Redmond 45th
TJ Johnson - Green Party, Olympia City Council – Port Military Resistance
Phil Burke – Impeach.tv impeachment scholar
Randy Gordon - Adjunct Professor, Seattle University School of law
Geov Parrish – Co/Editor, Eat the State
Maggie Lawless – World Can’t Wait campaign

See Also:

Eric Klinenberg: Fighting for Air, Monday 3/5, 8-9PM  
For the residents of Minot, North Dakota, the demise of truly local media spelled disaster. In the wake of a train derailment that sent a cloud of poisonous gas drifting toward the town, Minot’s fire and rescue department attempted to reach Clear Channel, the owner/operator of all six local commercial radio stations to warn residents of the approaching threat—but there was no one in the studio to take the call. The result was one death and more than a thousand injuries. Opening with the story of the Minot tragedy, Eric Klinenberg’s new book, Fighting for Air, examines how corporate ownership and control of local media has remade American political and cultural life. Klinenberg is interviewed by Michael Fancher, editor-at-large of the Seattle Times. Also the author of the highly acclaimed Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster In Chicago, Klinenberg is a sociology professor at New York University.
Thanks to Seattle Town Hall & Elliott Bay Books

Col. Ann Wright and Senator Eric Oemig, Monday 2/26/07, 8-9 PM

Col. Ann Wright: Continuing our coverage of the recent two-day Citizens' Hearing held over January 20-21 at Evergreen State Collage, Tacoma campus, featuring a distinguished tribunal panel listening to testimony on the war crimes of the Bush Administration.  This weeks show features the testimony of Col. Ann Wright.   Col. Wright resigned from the military due to her disagreement with the Bush administration's decision to go to war in
Iraq without the authorization of the UN Security Council.  For a complete bio see: http://www.swingthevote.us/wright.html
See Also:
Senator Eric Oemig announced on Feb. 10th his intention to sponsor a bill calling for impeachment investigations of Bush and Cheney in the Washington State legislature.  (See www.afterdowningstreet.org/wa)  When a state legislature adopts a resolution to impeach, it goes to the floor of the House of Representatives as a privileged item.  The constitution provides this way to force impeachment when the beltway Democrats need a little kick.  Impeachment is an issue that directly effects states in many ways but just consider for instance how many viaduct and 520 bridge replacements we could fund with the money from our state that is being pissed away in the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq.  There are several other states that are considering similar legislation but if this passes, Washington State will lead the nation.  This legislation needs our support so I have included this short speech from Sen. Oemig in this coming week’s show.  It was given at the Town Hall Meeting in Olympia -"Constitution in Crisis: The Case for Impeachment" event on 2/20 (coming soon to a television near you).

The Senate will be considering the Impeachment Bill: SJM 8016 on March 1st in the Cherberg Hearing Room 2 at
3:30.  There will be a rally at the Capitol starting at 1 PM.  Call 800-562-6000 for details.  It may be helpful to thank the Senators who are co-sponsoring the bill.  They include: Darlene Fairley, Karen Fraser, Claudia Kauffman, Adam Kline, Jeanne Kohl-Welles, Margarita Prentice, Debbie Regala, and Harriet Spanel. Thanks to Ken Slusher, Carl Chatski, and Open Mondays Productions for videotaping and help editing the Citizen’s Hearing event video.

Ralph Nader- The Seventeen Traditions, Monday 2/19
8-9 PM Known for his lifetime of progressive activism and fearless critique of corruption in American politics and society, Ralph Nader is getting personal. In his latest book, "The Seventeen Traditions", Nader reflects on his serene and enriching childhood in bucolic Connecticut with parents recently emigrated from Lebanon. It's his warmest and most introspective writing to date, and chronicles a time in American history when the family and the natural world were central in a child's understanding of how to be a conscientious adult.

Lt. Ehren Watada, Monday 2/12, 8/9 PM
This was Ehren’s last speech before the court marshal today given Saturday 2/3 at University Temple United Methodist Church in Seattle.  I think it was the best I’ve seen.   

Legislative Forum on Global Warming with KC Golden and Genesee Adkins, Monday 2/5, 8-9 PM
Hosted by Dick Burkhart, this Legislative Form was held last Sunday [January 28] and features Genesee Adkins - State Policy Director of Transportation Choices Coalition and KC Golden - Policy Director of Climate Solutions who detail upcoming state legislation that will have an impact on Climate Change.  It’s important to know what our state government is planning to address the crisis of global warming but even more importantly, there are powerful lobbies particularly in the area of transportation that are pushing to set us back rather than forward.  For this reason the climate needs a powerful well-informed citizen lobby to provide the necessary pressure and cover for legislators to make sure that the right things get done in Olympia.  There will be two citizen lobby days in Olympia in the next two weeks.  The first one is this coming Tuesday [Feb. 6th], is hosted by Transportation Choices, and concerns upcoming transportation bills. [see: http://www.transportationchoices.org/agendachoices.asp]  The other is on Feb. 14th and focuses on overall environmental legislation. It is hosted by more than a dozen local NGOs including People for Puget Sound and Climate Solutions [www.pugetsound.org/index/lobbyday.]   Use this show as a quick primer on the proposed bills  and the issues at hand, then have a talk with your State Reps.  Better yet, if you can spare the time, sign up for the lobby days, hop on the bus to Olympia and have breakfast with them.  A good time will be had by all.
Daniel Ellsberg, Lt. Ehren Watada, and Professor Richard Falk- Citizens' Hearing on the Legality of U.S. Actions in Iraq:
The Case of Lt. Ehren Watada, Monday 1/29/07, 8-9 PM

In an unprecedented two-day Citizens' Hearing held over January 20-21 at Evergreen State Collage, Tacoma campus, more than 600 citizens joined a distinguished tribunal panel in listening to testimony about the legality of the US invasion of Iraq.  The Citizens' Hearing was convened to present evidence that Lt. Ehren Watada would have presented in his February 5 court martial on the question that the military ruled barred from entry on Jan. 16 - the question of the Iraq War's legality.  Lt. Watada has repeatedly asserted that because the Iraq War is illegal, it is his duty to refuse orders to deploy.  He is the Army's first commissioned officer to take such a stand.  Panel Chair David Krieger asserted: "If Lt. Watada cannot get a full hearing about the war's legality in a military trial, then his case should at least be presented in the court of public opinion.  This Citizens' Hearing was about giving Lt. Watada's position equal time."

We intend to broadcast more of this hearing the following week. Support Ehren Watada:

See Also:
Thanks to Ken Slusher, Carl Chatski, and Open Mondays Productions for videotaping and help editing the event video

On the Road to Clean Elections, Monday 1/22/07, 8-9 PM
If we are ever are to stand a chance of returning real democracy to the USA, the most important thing we can possibly do is eliminate the system of legalized bribery that forces politicians to spend half their time raising big bucks from people with deep pockets.  Then maybe We the People can once again share the privilege of being the ones our elected officials represent.  Two states, Maine and Arizona have passed public financing into law by Initiative.  Now it’s our turn to make history.  Citizens from all over the state have banded together and are organizing to pass public financing into law here in Washington.  They mean business.  They have formed a first rate organization, named it Washington Public Campaigns www.washclean.org, and have attracted some high powered activists, political leaders, and esteemed individuals to join the campaign.  The week before last they held a forum and packed the Town Hall.  They flew in some Senators from Maine and Arizona who got elected running with clean money as well as activist/writer David Sirota.  They also invited several of our state Senators and Representatives who also would like the opportunity to run for office without having to beg and feel beholden to big money campaign contributors.  They are going to try to pass this through the legislature first.  If that doesn’t succeed, we will pass it by Initiative.  Won’t you join us in witnessing this historic, inspiring, and informative event and then carry through by helping us to organize for a democratic revolution?

David Sirota is the author of Hostile Takeover: How Big Money & Corruption Conquered Our Government – and How We Take It Back.  As a former aid to Rep. Bernie Sanders who served on the House Appropriations Committee [with Tom Delay and Duke Cunningham] David Sirota had a unique inside viewpoint.  David Sirota also worked for Montana governor Brian Schweitzer, is a senior editor at In These Times, a contributor to The Nation and a regular guest on Al Franken’s Air America show.  He is the founder and co chair of the Progressive Legislative Action Network (PLAN), an organization which he set up to push for progressive legislation on a local and state level. Jerry Mander- Paradigm Wars, Monday 1/15, 8-9PM Jerry Mander says that the swift kick we gave the WTO here in Seattle in 1999 was probably a death blow.  Every ministerial they have organized since has ended in total collapse.  The attempts to further the neo-liberal agenda by organizing regional free trade organizaions have not fared so well either.  George Bush was laughed out of South America and had to come home a day early the last time he went down to talk up the FTAA.

Many may remember the three day globalization teach-in at Ben Aroya Hall that Jerry Mander was instrumental in organizing which immediately preceded our WTO shut down.  He says it was a high point of his life.  He is a founder of the International Forum on Globalization, a senior fellow at the Public Media Center, and the author of numerous books, including In the Absence of the Sacred.  As a former advertising executive he is a bonafide corporate media refugee.  In 1977 he published a best selling book called Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television and that same year he founded the first non-profit advertising agency in the United States, Public Interest Communications which worked on campaigns to prevent dams in the Grand Canyon, found Redwood National Park, and stop the American project to build a Supersonic Transport.

Jerry was at Elliott Bay Bookstore in December to talk about the subject of indigenous people’s responses and movements against the forces of economic globalization.  You will be surprised to know that in many cases they are winning.  Jerry Mander is Co/editor of: Paradigm Wars: Indigenous Peoples’ Resistance to Globalization published by Sierra Club books.

The FCC & Media Democracy, Monday Jan 1st,
8-9 PM
Update from the Media Wars
For some strange reason the Corporate Media refuse to cover issues involving themselves.  This is as good an example as any of why corporate media consolidation is a direct attack on democracy.  The Federal Communications Commission which was originally created to regulate our media in the public interest - to ensure that our media remain competitive and accountable to local communities, with programming that reflects divers voices and viewpoints under Republican rule has been transformed to do the exact opposite.   Two extremely important issues before the FCC got very little coverage in corporate controlled media:
1. The $85 billion merger between AT&T and Bell South.  Under Right wing rule AT&T is trying to reconstitute the Ma Bell monopoly that was broken up in 1984.  Yesterday AT&T was forced to file a letter of commitment with the Federal Communications Commission agreeing to adhere to strict Network Neutrality in the new merger.  [See: AT&T Commits to Net Neutrality and Low-Cost Internet http://www.commondreams.org/news2006/1229-01.htm]
This should be seen as a great victory for grassroots activists and public pressure generated by alternative media in the battle to stave off complete corporate thought control but a real victory would be when the government begins to take actions to end media consolidation by breaking up the 5 giant media conglomerates that dominate information dissemination in the United States and force the media to act in the public interest and reinstitute fairness.  Another thing to consider might be why we allow high speed internet access to be controlled by corporate monopolies like AT&T in the first place?  If local and state governments had the right to set up public internet as part of the commons like so many other places in the world, we wouldn’t have to force them to act in the public interest in the first place.
2. Under cover of Christmas the three Republican FCC commissioners voted to change cable franchising laws so that local communities have less control over incoming pay-television providers.  The vote was pushed for by the telecom giants Verizon and AT&T. The measure was passed by a three-to-two vote -- with Democratic commissioners,
Michael Copps and Jonathan Adelstein dissenting.  This eliminates operating funding for Public Access stations and other "PEGs" so there will be no money to run access centers.  Critics of the FCC's decision are already planning a court challenge.
Last month the two democratic FCC Commissioners
Michael Copps and Jonathan Adelstein were in Seattle for a another public hearing on media ownership. The hearing, sponsored by Reclaim the Media, the Seattle Times, KBCS 91.3fm Community Radio and the University of Washington Department of Communications featured open public testimony.  Suffice it to say that no one was in favor of further media consolidation but that didn’t stop the three right wing commissioners who weren’t there.  This week’s show features the press conference with Commissioners Copps and Adelstein, and Congressman Inslee where I was able to field several questions and key testimony from the hearing later that evening.
What you can do:
Call your Senators and Congressman: If you are interested in keeping public access on the air, Congress needs a ground swell of public opposition to the FCC ruling.  Boycott fascist media control: Discontinuing services from giant media monopolies like AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast while making it clear that you disapprove of their scheme for total media domination may also be effective.

[List 6] August 8th 2005 thru December 25th 2006:
Vandana Shiva: Water, Seeds, and the Human Spirit: Ecological and Economic Perspectives, Monday 12/25 8-9 PM There will be regular programming on Christmas day so I have decided to dust off this talk from July of ’04:

Dr. Vandana Shiva, an international voice addressing issues of social justice and globalization, returned  to Kane Hall to present a public lecture, "Water, Seeds, and the Human Spirit: Ecological and Economic Perspectives."

The lecture was presented by the Women's Center at the University of Washington and the Whidbey Institute - Leadership for the New Commons.

Dr. Shiva is a physicist, ecologist, author, a compelling speaker, and a brilliant and articulate activist who is the director of the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology. She is the founder of the International College for Sustainable Living near Dehradun, India. Her most recent books are Stolen Harvest and Water Wars--both books vividly convey vital issues related to the role of corporations and the development of practice and policy in relationship to the privatization and standardization of the essential elements upon which human life depends.

Walden Bello- The Crisis of the Globalist Project and Civil Society's Response, Monday December 18th 8-9 PM
Well obviously the globalist project has all but collapsed, and not without a little help from us and the welcoming party we threw for the WTO back in late November of ’99.  Some of us may remember Walden Bello’s talk as part of  the teach-in sponsored by the International Forum on Globalization at Ben Aroya Hall which kicked off the week of the famous “Battle of Seattle”.  Almost exactly 7 years later Walden Bello was back and gave this talk at the U of W on November 22nd.  And by some strange coincidence a couple weeks later, so was the founder of the IFG, Jerry Mander.  We are going to broadcast both of these talks so as to get a good dose of the current thinking from some of the key instigators of the rebellion. 

Walden Bello is a rock star in the GLOBAL JUSTICE MOVEMENT, who as director of Focus on the Global South and Professor of Sociology and Public Administration at the University of the Philippines, has been a dedicated activist, scholar, and writer who has been at the forefront of analyzing the inequities of the global trade regime and providing critical analysis and support to global south countries trying to change the balance of power in the WTO and other institutions.

Thanks to the Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies

Terry Tamminen- Lives Per Gallon, Monday Dec. 11th
8-9 PM You may think that you are being gouged at the gas pump but you have no idea.  Recently featured on Air America and Democracy Now, Terry Tamminen in this short but fascinating talk catalogues a host of lethal costs associated with our oil based economy that when factored in may make you think twice the next time you hear the “Oil Administration” and industry hacks trying to convince you that the alternatives are two expensive.  Mr. Tamminen also devotes some time to exposing how the Oil and automotive industries historically and to the present day are making sure that there aren’t any possible alternatives, gives some well informed observations on the current political situation and offers some insight on possible effective strategies toward getting us beyond oil.
Terry Tamminen has been involved with understanding and applying forms of environmental protection as an organizer/activist (founder of the Santa Monica BayKeeper) and was the former secretary of California’s Environmental Protection Agency.  He brings these perspectives, and more, to bear in his new book, “Lives Per Gallon: The True Cost of Our Oil Addiction”.
Thanks to Elliott Bay Bookstore

The Evangelical Phenomenon, Monday Dec. 4th
8-9 PM This panel discussion hosted by Faith Media Democracy was given at Seattle Town Hall two weeks ago and explores the subject of fundamentalist Christianity.  The full title of the event was: The Evangelical Phenomenon - What is it? How should the rest of us respond?  The panel brought together four extraordinary experts who’s lives have been touched deeply and whom have studied and written extensively on the subject.  You'll hear from:
David Domke, Ph.D., Communications professor at the University of Washington. Dr. Domke's research focuses on the way in which mass communications and humans interact to shape our world. He consults with political organizations and non-profits to articulate the core values and priorities underlying their work. He is the author of God Willing: Political fundamentalism in the White House, the 'War on Terror,' and the echoing press. www.com.washington.edu/god_willing.
Reverend Rich Lang, M. Div., minister of Trinity United Methodist, Seattle, a congregation that seeks to role model justice, peace, compassion and kindness in their care of creation and of each other. Reverend Lang is a regional lecturer on the rise of Christian fascism. Recent sermons can be found at www.tumseattle.org
Valerie Tarico, Ph.D. -, Valerie Tarico is the author of The Dark Side: How evangelical teachings corrupt love and truth. Raised in a staunch fundamentalist family, Dr. Tarico calls upon her scientific training, professional experience, and background as a born-again Evangelical as she examines crucial questions about faith, facts, and compassion. Her essays about society and family life can be found at www.spaces.msn.com/awaypoint.
Rabbi Daniel Weiner, M.A. As senior rabbi of Temple de Hirsch Sinai, (and in the world at large –CHECK), Rabbi Weiner works to create a caring and sacred community bound by a common purpose, and committed to the well-being of each of its members." www.tdhs-nw.org

Scott Ritter- Target Iran, Monday November 20th, 8-9 PM
I’m a Democrat but I’m no fool.  I held my nose and voted for Maria Cantwell just as I said I would and I thank my lucky stars that she won.  Not because I think she deserves it or that I believe that she in any way represents me or the best interests of the vast majority of the people in this country or the world.  I realized long ago that politicians are like booking agents: You can’t trust any of them any farther than you can throw them.  The Democratic takeover of congress does not necessarily mean that happy days are here again but it does mean that we have a chance to get our democracy back and save this planet.

If you thought it was an organizing triumph to win back the congress, get set for the much bigger battle to take back the country.  Sorry to break this to you if you haven’t realized it yet but Nancy Pelosi is not on our side and neither are any of the war criminals, traitors and corporatist hacks who voted to attack
Iraq or suspend any part of the constitution.

While Nancy Pelosi waxed on and on about how the “Democrats pledge civility and bipartisanship” declaring that “impeachment is off the table”, I didn’t hear a single word about the need to repeal the Military Commissions Act, the PATRIOT Act, the restoration of habeas corpus and the end of torture and aggression as foreign policy.  And I’m sorry but holding those in high office to account for torture and heinous war crimes is not called “retribution”, its called justice and the restoration of the rule of law.  In fact, it’s quite telling that the Democratic leadership doesn’t talk in these terms.  “Retribution” for what, the way the Republican congressional leadership treated the Democrats?  Furthermore, I haven’t heard a word from the Democrats about ending the daily massacre of the entire country of
Iraq or the ongoing plans and threats to attack Iran anytime soon.

As former chief UNSCOM weapons inspector Scott Ritter makes clear, the invasion of Iraq, the ongoing planning to attack Iran and the goal to dominate and reshape the middle east is not just some psychotic neo-con pipe dream, but is longstanding strategic planning of the US corporatist empire of which the “party within a party” that controls the Democratic Party is part and parcel.

Because Scott Ritter was on the ground in Iraq and Iran for ten years as the chief UN weapons inspector he had first hand information that enabled him to tell us as no other could and in no uncertain terms that the proposition that Iraq had WMD was bunk.  For the very same reason, as Scott lays out in this talk, the proposition that
Iran has a nuclear weapons program is not only bunk but completely impossible.  And furthermore the US government knows it just as they always knew there was no Uranium from Niger, no threat of a “mushroom cloud” from Saddam, no WMD, or even the faintest chance of “democracy” coming out of the barrel of US guns.  That’s why whenever any politician, Democrat or Republican starts talking about an Iranian nuclear weapons program you will know them as the servants of the masters of war and the enemy of We the People.  To overlook this is extremely dangerous.

Now is not the time to rest on our haunches.   Now is the time to fight like our lives depend on it to take back our party, our government, our constitution, and our future.  Because politicians react to only one thing for certain: pressure.  Judging by how Maria Cantwell ignored overwhelming calls at a ratio of 100 to 1 to vote against the PATRIOT Act and Bush’s War.  It’s going to take lot more pressure than that.  Peace is Non-Partisan.  The people are still coming.

David Korten- The Great Turning, Monday Nov 13th
8-9 PM

Pirate TV welcome’s back David Korten with this PowerPoint presentation given at the recent Veterans for Peace convention here in
Seattle.  David opened his earthshaking new book with these words:

By what name will our children and our children's children call our time? Will they speak in anger and frustration of the time of the Great Unraveling, when profligate consumption led to an accelerating wave of collapsing environmental systems, violent competition for what remained of the planet's resources, a dramatic dieback of the human population, and a fragmentation of those who remained into warring fiefdoms ruled by ruthless local lords?
Or will they look back in joyful celebration on the noble time of the Great Turning, when their forebears turned crisis into opportunity, embraced the higher-order potential of their human nature, learned to live in creative partnership with one another and the living Earth, and brought forth a new era of human possibility?
It is the premise of The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community that we humans stand at a defining moment that presents us with an irrevocable choice. Our collective response will determine how our time is remembered for so long as the human species survives. In the days now at hand, we must each be clear that every individual and collective choice we make is a vote for the future we of this time will bequeath to the generations that follow. The Great Turning is not a prophecy; it is a possibility.
-- David Korten, The Great Turning (2006)

See also:

Thom Hartmann –Screwed Part 1, Monday 10/30 8-9 PM
Thom Hartmann –Screwed Part 2, Monday 11/6 8-9 PM

Reactionary extremist conservatives have taken over our government and have pursued a 25 year campaign to destroy democracy and the middle class.  Why the middle class?  Because people who are educated and who have the time and wherewithal, will question authority when the government demands to send them off to some war for profit and empire half way across the world like Viet Nam or Iraq.  They might start asking questions like:  What’s in it for me?  And, what makes you think I’m your property to do with what you want?  They don’t make such good and compliant slaves as desperately poor people do, especially if they are organized into unions.  In fact, Thom Hartmann argues that democracy is impossible without a strong middle class and that the founders of our nation fully understood this.  That’s why they took great care to institute measures that would prevent the return of an aristocracy which ruled through corporate feudalism.  Today we call it corporatism or fascism but it is the very same type of tyranny we once fought a revolutionary war to drive from these shores.   They knew that if we allowed the rise of an aristocracy and the accumulation or great wealth, it would inevitably overpower the very democratic institutions they had worked so hard to construct.  It appears they were right.

The economic monarchists as Hartmann calls them a.k.a. the Neo-cons and various other cons have all but conned us out of our democracy and have instituted a series of hostile government policies that have left the middle class on the brink of extinction in the
USA and much of the world.  But Thom Hartmann demonstrates that this didn’t suddenly come out of nowhere.  This battle has been waging throughout our entire history.  He traces the fight all the way back through the revolutionary war and the constitutional convention and in the process punctures more than a few myth-conceptions.  If fact, Thom Hartmann may be the best historical myth-popper I’ve ever seen.  In my opinion, the knowledge contained in this talk and the accompanying book [Thom says to consider this talk the “book on tape” version] is essential to a clear contextual understanding of American democracy.  As well as who these reactionaries are, what it is that they are doing to us, and what we need to be doing about it.  For that reason I’m broadcasting the entire two hour talk over the next two weeks.  I can’t think of anything better to illuminate just exactly what the stakes are in the upcoming election which may very well be the most important in our history.  The full title of Thom’s new book is:  “Screwed, The Undeclared War Against the Middle Class -And What We Can Do About It”

Listen to Thom Hartmann in Seattle weekdays on Air America- Progressive Talk Radio AM 1090, 9-Noon
See also: http://www.thomhartmann.com

John Stauber-The Best War Ever, Monday 10/23, 8-9 PM
John Stauber is the founder and current executive director of the Center for Media & Democracy www.prwatch.org.  Focusing on the invisible trillion dollar Public Relations or more accurately, “perception management” industry, he and his cohorts bring a unique perspective to the issues of our day.  They shed light on the hidden media machinery that is always running behind the scenes, massaging the public mind and keeping the “rabble” in check, and expose the substructure underlying the facade of democracy in the USA.  -Essential knowledge for anyone who wants to take control of their future.

John Stauber who has exposed public relations spin and propaganda, lobbyists’ cozy relationships with lawmakers, phony ‘grassroots’ front groups, and other corporate sponsored “covert operations”, turns his attention to the government/media deception and military psychological operations related to the selling of the invasion and occupation of Iraq.  He and Sheldon Rampton’s latest book “The Best War Ever: Lies, Damned Lies, and the Mess in Iraq” examines what Stauber and colleagues at the Center for Media and Democracy characterize as the unraveling of the propaganda model in the months and years after President Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” speech.  This week’s show kicks off with an eye opening 4 minute video crammed with back to back clips of the Bush Administration and corporate media, caught in the act of unabashed prevarication.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Amy and David Goodman- Static, Monday 10/16,
8-9 PM
The Media Is the Enemy

“The bubble-headed-bleach-blond who comes on at five” may seem harmless enough but she is the face of the benign corporate fascism that is the hallmark of our era.  After all, if we had had a media watchdog instead of a corporate media lapdog, a media that informed rather than one that distracts, it is not possible that a moronic authoritarian proto-fascist like George Bush could ever have come even close to occupying the White House.  The outrageous lies that were used to sell the illegal invasion of Iraq would have been exposed before they could have caused any damage, and the right wing takeover of the government could never have been achieved.  Just to name a few.  Face it, the most dangerous place in America is in front of your TV set.

Many will argue that this all started with Ronald Reagan’s elimination of the Fairness Doctrine and the suspension of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act which allowed for the massive consolidation of the media into the five giant monopolies that dominate the spectrum today.  But if media democracy activists back at the dawn of broadcast media in the 1920’s had won the day, giant corporations like General Electric and RCA would not have been allowed to dominate broadcast media in the first place and this country would be vastly different.

That dissemination of corporate propaganda and selling of mindless consumerism has always been the basic creed of media since then is a given, but more often than not corporate media has been willing to shamelessly act as stenographers for government lies and disinformation also.  The dirty little secret is that for years the biggest and most important corporate media organizations such as The New York Times, CBS and the other TV networks, wire services, and many other organizations have secretly and illegally collaborated hand in hand with the CIA to mislead and manipulate We the People.  The CIA spends about a third of its budget [your tax dollars at work] on covert media operations every year.

The reason I bring this up is because David Goodman made reference to this in his talk a few weeks ago at Seattle Town Hall.  He and his sister Amy have included a chapter in their new book “Static: Government Liars, Media Cheerleaders, and the People Who Fight Back” called “The Mighty Wurlitzer”.   It’s not something that is well known and very little has been written about it, but there was a brief period in the mid 70s after the Watergate era scandals and the Viet Nam melt-down wherein a door opened up with the Church and Pike Committee hearings and an avalanche of bones cascaded out of the closet.  The next Congress and the incoming president Ronald Reagan, horrified by the prospect of so many skeletons escaping at once and the damage it was doing to the illusion of democracy abruptly shut the door but not before a significant amount of previously unknown information came into the public record.  That data is still out there for all to see who wish to see.  The most comprehensive inventory of all these books, articles, and documents concerning the secret history of the CIA and the media [other than possibly Amy and Dave’s new book] are referenced in the following article- “Journalism and the CIA: The Mighty Wurlitzer” which can be found at this link: www.namebase.org/news17.html.  The only difference between those times and ours is that it’s much worse now, the establishment media, incapable of embarrassment no longer seem to feel the need to put on more than the slightest obligatory veneer of fairness, objectivity, or even separation from government and the majority of people seem to have forgotten what the phrase “Free Press” is supposed to mean.

I have included the portion of David Goodman’s talk which touched on this in this week’s show as well as the entire Amy Goodman talk.  Their book focuses on the ongoing struggle against the corporatist media takeover.  No doubt it is the worst enemy we face and if it weren’t for courageous independent media activists like her and programs like Democracy Now!, all would be lost.  Because as Dahr Jamail said on this show a few weeks ago, the independent media are all we have left.  They deserve our support.

Thanks to Town Hall and Elliott Bay Books

How to Impeach a President, plus Bruce Gagnon & Malik Rahim, Monday October 9th 8-9 PM
The Center for Constitutional Rights has produced this excellent documentary detailing the impeachable crimes against the Constitution, the people of the United States and rest of humanity committed by the current administration.  These are the crimes that the administration knows that they are likely to be held to account for if the Republicans loose control of the House or the Senate in the upcoming elections.  Just this past week the Republican Congress at the behest of the President rammed through a horrific detainee act that seeks to legalize in retrospect many of these crimes and in the process legalizes torture, eliminates Habeas Corpus and gives the President the capacity to declare any of us “enemy combatants”.  The 4th, 5th, parts of the 6th, and the 8th amendments of the constitution are now officially gone and we are now at the mercy of the very same right wing Supreme Court which appointed George Bush.  Said the NY Times editorial page:

“Here’s what happens when this irresponsible Congress railroads a profoundly important bill to serve the mindless politics of a midterm election: The Bush administration uses Republicans’ fear of losing their majority to push through ghastly ideas about antiterrorism that will make American troops less safe and do lasting damage to our 217-year-old nation of laws — while actually doing nothing to protect the nation from terrorists. Democrats betray their principles to avoid last-minute attack ads. Our democracy is the big loser…

Last week, the White House and three Republican senators announced a terrible deal on this legislation that gave Mr. Bush most of what he wanted, including a blanket waiver for crimes Americans may have committed in the service of his antiterrorism policies. Then Vice President
Dick Cheney and his willing lawmakers rewrote the rest of the measure so that it would give Mr. Bush the power to jail pretty much anyone he wants for as long as he wants without charging them, to unilaterally reinterpret the Geneva Conventions, to authorize what normal people consider torture, and to deny justice to hundreds of men captured in error.”  See: http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0928-27.htm

See also: Habeas Corpus, R.I.P. (1215 - 2006) by Molly Ivins http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0928-20.htm

While it is imperative for us to be organizing for the upcoming congressional elections like our very lives depend on it, it is clear that we cannot wait in the hope that a future Democratic controlled congress will do the right thing.  We need to be organizing for impeachment now.  The CCR has been promoting a series of community meetings with showings of the video.  See: http://www.ccr-ny.org/v2/home.asp  The documentary which is based on the Center’s recent book: Articles of Impeachment Against George W. Bush, details how the constitution provides for articles of impeachment to be introduced by State and local governments.  Please set your VCR’s and spread this documentary around.

The second half of this week’s show will feature two short talks by Bruce Gagnon & Malik Rahim from the recent Veterans for Peace Convention held here in
Seattle.  These talks are timely and fitting because they elaborate on the crimes committed by this administration.  The Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space, the organization which Bruce Gagnon coordinates has proclaimed this week October 1 – 8, to be Keep Space for Peace Week: International Week of Protest to Stop the Militarization of Space and has organized a series of actions nation wide.  See: www.space4peace.org

Malik Rahim is the organizer of the Common Ground Collective for Katrina Relief, Fmr. Black Panther & National Committee to Combat Fascism organizer, Public Housing activist, recent Green Party candidate for New Orleans City Council.  The Common Ground Collective, see: www.commongroundrelief.org, is a citizens organization set up by necessity to provide relief for the victims of hurricane Katrina, and long term support in rebuilding the communities affected in the
New Orleans area in the face of the virtual abandonment by the Bush Administration.  To bring attention, and protest in opposition to the shameful policy and to raise money and mobilize volunteers, the CGC and VFP this last March organized the Walkin’ to New Orleans March see: www.vetgulfmarch.org.

Jim Hightower: On Common Ground: Innovations in energy and agriculture and a new civic awakening, Monday October 2nd 8-9 PM

Former two term Texas Agriculture Commissioner, national radio commentator, public speaker extraordinaire, writer and author of numerous books, Jim Hightower gave this talk September 14th to a packed Town Hall filled with activists from the Institute for Washington's Future which works for an economically just, environmentally sustainable, and culturally diverse future for the Pacific Northwest by advancing economic development in Washington's depressed communities.  Always inspiring and hilariously satirical, Jim was in rare form on this evening.  His latest book is: Let's Stop Beating Around the Bush.

Thanks to Noemie Maxwell

Ray McGovern and Ed Hein- Lies, Secrecy, and Lawlessness: How to Stop the Coming Police State and Protect Yourself Along the Way; Monday 9/25 8-9 PM

I asked Ray McGovern, the veteran CIA analyst who pinned Rumsfeld down on TV recently asking why he had lied to get us into the war, what he thought the administration was planning to do with the database they were compiling since they obviously weren’t spying on us to protect us from terrorists.  It was recently disclosed in discovery that the Bush administration set up the illegal domestic spying operation with AT&T seven months before the 9/11 attacks.  Mr. McGovern said they were using it for blackmail a la J. Edgar.  Hmm, verrry interezstink…
Ed Hein is a lawyer, teacher, writer and editor. A native of Chicago, for the past 30 years he has lived in Juneau, Alaska, where he is a member of VFP Chapter 100. Ed served in the U.S. Army from 1971-1974. During infantry officer candidate school at Ft. Benning, GA, he walked off a bayonet training field, turned in his weapons, and refused to carry them ever again. He served the rest of his three-year enlistment as a conscientious objector and rose to the esteemed rank of Spec. 4.
After receiving an honorable discharge, Ed attended graduate school in journalism and wrote stories from Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza for The Seattle Times, The Omaha World Herald, and other U.S. newspapers. He has also worked as a news reporter or editor in Tacoma, WA; San Luis Obispo, CA; and Anchorage and Juneau, Alaska. He has taught journalism and law at the college level and is the author of a legal research textbook.
Ed is a graduate of the Seattle University School of Law. Since 1994, he has been a federal administrative judge. He has a strong interest in Constitutional Law, and is concerned about the erosion of individual Constitutional freedoms and the weakening of our system of checks and balances in the federal government. Ed’s most recent project is producing the music CD Wounded Dove for VFP Chapter 100. Ray McGovern is a 27-year veteran of the CIA whose career spanned the administrations of John F. Kennedy to that of George H. W. Bush. As a senior analyst, Ray chaired National Intelligence Estimates; he also prepared the President’s Daily Brief, which he briefed one-on-one to President Ronald Reagan’s most senior national security advisers from 1981 to 1985.
In January 2003, Ray and other former intelligence officers founded Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) to expose the politicization of intelligence to “justify” war on Iraq. In a Feb. 5 Memorandum for the President, VIPS gave Colin Powell’s UN speech that day a C-minus for content, and warned that intelligence analysts were “finding it hard to make themselves heard above the drumbeat for war.” The VIPS memo concluded with a strong recommendation to the president that he widen his circle of advisers beyond those “clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.”
As an act of conscience on March 2, 2006, Ray returned the Intelligence Commendation career medallion given him for “especially meritorious service,” explaining, “I do not want to be associated, however remotely, with an agency engaged in torture.” On May 4 in Atlanta, Ray made national news by confronting Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld on live TV with pointed questions like: “Why did you lie to get us into a war that was not necessary and that has caused these kinds of casualties?”
An Army veteran (1962-64), Ray now works with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in Washington, DC, and teaches at the Servant Leadership School in the inner city. TomPaine, Truthout, and CommonDreams are among the websites regularly hosting Ray’s commentaries; he also publishes occasional op-eds for print media like the Miami Herald. Late last year Ray wrote a chapter for Neo-CONNED Again!, titled “Sham Dunk: Cooking Intelligence for the President.”
Thanks to the Veterans for Peace

Dahr Jamail- War Profiteering and
U.S. Strategic Goals in the Middle East, Monday 9/18 8-9 PM

Pirate TV welcomes Dahr Jamail back once again.  What really is US Policy in
Iraq?  Hear Dahr Jamail’s assessment and update on the current situation.

John Perkins –Where We Go From Here, Monday 9/11 8-9 PM It’s fitting to show John Perkins, author of “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man” on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks because there is no better way to understand why someone would be motivated to attack the World Trade Center than to realize the implications of the existence of Economic Hit Men in the world.  If you haven’t read this book yet then I would suggest that you do because it provides a key piece of the puzzle in understanding how the US economic empire has ruled the world for the past 50 or 60 years that has never before been exposed.  I heard about John Perkins last summer and immediately read his book.  Ever since then I have been trying to get him on Pirate TV.  I finally got the opportunity to tape his talk at the recent Veterans for Peace (VFP) convention here in Seattle.  He said he had finished his book tour a few months ago and is busy working on the next one.  He interrupted his work to give this talk because he recognizes as do I the critical importance of the VFP in the current struggle to bring Democracy to the USA.

For those who haven’t heard of EHMs as they are known in the “industry”, you will just have to watch the show.  John Perkins tells his story quite eloquently.  But for those who are aware of John Perkins, this talk offers the opportunity to get a unique perspective on the current situation.  Why is the US Empire currently waging war in the Middle East?  What is the secret history and hidden forces driving these policies?  What, from the vantage point of someone who spent his life working as an Economic Hit Man is the most effective strategy to stop the wars -the hot wars, the secret wars, and the economic wars and usher in a better world?

Brian Willson- The Politics of Obedience: Breaking the Habit of Voluntary Servitude, Monday 8/28 7-8 PM
n John Dean’s talk a few weeks back we learned about the authoritarian personality and the relationship to the conservative mind set.  Continuing on in our exploration of this phenomenon, this week and last we have been taking a look at it from the other side.  That is from the side of courageous people of conscience who are standing up to authority in the face of overwhelming odds.

Back in 1961 Yale psychologist Stanley Milgram created a psychological experiment to find out up to which point people could be controlled by authority.  The test involved a fake experiment set up to test how many progressively stronger electric shocks a subject could be compelled to give another person (actually an actor screaming as if in pain) before they would refuse to administer any more shocks.  [See: http://submoon.freeshell.org/fr/valium/aadc.html for details on this and other experiments.]   The results showed that 65% could be compelled to administer levels of shock that would have resulted in death if the “experiment” had been real.  The tendency to follow authority appears to be so strong in most of us that it overrides conscience and critical thinking.  Follow up questioning demonstrated that the subjects also believed that because they were following the orders of an authority figure they were absolved of guilt.  This is not something we like to think about but should we be surprised?  What if the “authority” is the corporate media?  What if it is the President or a military commander?

Brian Willson says that this trait goes back to the dawn of civilization and hierarchical power structures.  Fortunately there are those among us like Brian Willson, John Dean, and Ehren Watada who listen to their inner voice and cannot be compelled to go along when ordered to commit crimes or immoral acts.  Longtime viewers will remember Brian’s story.   He refused to go along when he witnessed atrocities in Viet Nam.  He became an anti-war activist and later lost both legs while trying to block a weapons train during the Reagan era illegal Central American wars.

Why is it that some people have the courage to do the right thing and not others?  Why is that number apparently so small?  What can we learn from them?  How can we break the habit of voluntary servitude?  This program begins with a press conference given by Sgt. Ricky Clousing an Army interrogator who witnessed war crimes by US forces in Iraq and refused to go back.  Ricky tells what he saw that compelled him to quit.  He is another hero who is paying the price of protecting our constitution from “domestic enemies” currently occupying the White House.  He deserves our support.   The conference, given on Aug. 11th shortly before Sgt. Clousing turned himself in at Fort Lewis was attended by Brian Willson just prior to his presentation.

See also: “Soldier explains why he disappeared” http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/local/story/6021012p-5287376c.html

Lt. Ehren Watada and Marjorie Cohn- Support the Troops/ Support the Constitution, Monday August 21st
7-8 PM

Lt. Ehren Watada is the first US military officer to publicly resist the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq.  It must be noted that after witnessing multiple atrocities and war crimes Lt. Watada tried to quietly resign his commission which is his right as an officer.  His request was refused by the Army.  This powerful and historic speech, given by Lt. Watada last Saturday at the Veterans for Peace Annual Convention in Seattle was interrupted several times by huge applause and drew multiple standing ovations.  I wish I could get it on air sooner because Thursday is the day that Lt. Watada's Article 32 (pretrial) hearing is scheduled to take place at Fort Lewis.  For this reason I am including this link to Dahr Jamail’s TruthOut article from today which includes the text of the speech: http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/081406A.shtm
A large rally in support of Lt. Ehren Watada will take place at the bridge over I-5 at Exit 119, near Fort Lewis at 6:00 PM this coming Wednesday. See:  www.ThankYouLt.org.  Your support is needed.

What if they gave a war and nobody came?  The subject and title of Ehren Watada’s speech: "Soldiers Can Choose to Stop Fighting" is particularly significant in light of the erased history that is exposed by a new documentary featuring among others, long-time Seattle anti-war activist and PepperSpray Productions founder Randy Rowland who spent time in the Presidio stockade for refusing to a take part in the viscous atrocities of the Nixon Administration.  The film titled “Sir! No Sir!” documents the Anti-War movement within the military during the Viet Nam war and makes the case that that war was brought to an end not so much by the anti-war movement or any other factor as when the Nixon Administration realized that they could no longer depend on the troops on the ground to carry out their policies.  In the 70’s US soldiers in Viet Nam simply refused in mass to fight and were killing their officers at a rate of one per week.  Over half a million deserted.  I saw this film last night and was astonished.  I had remembered some of this but had no idea the extent to which the rebellion overtook the military.  Nixon’s war machine actually fell apart!  This is a must-see.  It will be showing through Thursday Aug. 17th at the Northwest Film Forum on Capital Hill www.nwfilmforum.org.  The film is also available on DVD.

The second part of next week’s show features law professor Marjorie Cohn, the president-elect of the National Lawyer’s Guild.  This speech immediately followed that of Lt. Watada and clarifies with extreme precision the constitutional, historic, and legal significance of the courageous actions taken by Lt. Watada and others in refusing to participate in the unconstitutional and illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq.  Professor Cohn has been a powerful supporter of Lt. Watada from the very beginning.  She lectures throughout the world on international human rights and U.S. foreign policy. A news consultant for CBS News, and a legal analyst for Court TV, she also provides legal and political commentary on BBC, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, NPR and Pacifica Radio.  Professor Cohn writes columns for Los Angeles Daily Journal and San Francisco Daily Journal, and she is a contributing editor to Jurist, truthout.org, and Guild Practitioner.

David Sirota- Hostile Takeover, Monday 8/14 7-8 PM
The full title of David Sirota’s new book is: Hostile Takeover: How Big Money & Corruption Conquered Our Government – and How We Take It Back.  I’m sure that most of us realized that we live in a plutocracy not a democracy long before the most corrupt administration and congress in our history came to power.  As David Sirota points out in this talk they no longer even try to put forth the pretence that they represent us.   As a former aid to Rep. Bernie Sanders who served on the House Appropriations Committee [with Tom Delay and Duke Cunningham] David Sirota had a unique inside viewpoint.  As he mentions, there are now 6 or 7
members of that committee under federal investigation.  David Sirota also worked for Montana governor Brian Schweitzer, is a senior editor at In These Times, a contributor to The Nation and a regular guest on Al Franken’s Air America show.

We all know how rotten things are and it certainly doesn’t hurt to be reminded, but the part of this talk I think is the most valuable is what he has to say about how we take our government back.  David Sirota is the founder and co chair of the Progressive Legislative Action Network (PLAN), an organization which he set up to push for progressive legislation on a local and state level.   He points out that we can still be very effective locally and each victory creates national momentum.  As he discusses right now in our state we can defeat right wing scams like the “Property Rights” and “Death Tax” initiatives which are being funded nationally by out of state big money interests and we have the unique opportunity to join the process of securing public funding of elections in our state.  David Sirota believes like I do that this is the key to putting our government back in the hands of We the People.

For information about the campaign for public financing of elections in
Washington State see: www.washclean.org
See also www.davidsirota.com and www.progressivestates.org
Pirate TV viewers will be interested to know that the Veterans for Peace Annual Convention will be held in Seattle this week at the HUB on the University of Washington campus.  This is going to be one of the most incredible assemblages of dynamic progressive and anti-war speakers that I have ever seen.  Many of these speakers have been on Pirate TV over the years such as Antonia Juhasz [just a few weeks ago], Bruce Gagnon, Dahr Jamail, Rep. Jim McDermott, David Korten, Brian Willson, Jennifer Harbury, Bert Sacks, and Marjorie Cohen.  Many others such as Cindy Sheehan, John Perkins, Ray McGovern, Anthony Arnove, Camilo Mejia, Ann Wright, and Monica Benderman, have not.  I intend to remedy this situation.  We have assembled a national team to tape all the keynotes and workshops.  DVDs will be available at some point however you may not want to miss this extraordinary 4 day event as I cannot guarantee that I can get even a fraction of this on. 

For convention information see:

John Dean- Conservatives Without Conscience, Monday 8/7, 7-8 PM

I said to John Dean: “They’re not going to like this… because what you are saying is that modern day conservatism is much less to do with ideology and much more a personality disorder.”  He emphatically denied this and made it clear that he was not implying that these people are clinically crazy.  And of course being that his background is in a law and not a medicine, he has to say that.

However, you and I know that this type of discussion puts you on a slippery slope.  The line between what’s considered normal and abnormal psychologically changes day to day.   And of course nobody is “normal”.  We all have our little idiosyncrasies.  But, upon further discussion I got the impression that he [Dean] actually does think that the neo-cons are crazy at least in the generic sense and I might add- extremely dangerous.  The prototypes for him are between the G. Gordon Liddy brand of conservatism and that of his mentor Berry Goldwater.  (In my heart I knew they were BOTH crazy!)

You see it’s very simple.  You either have a grip or you don’t.  If you don’t have a grip and something within your nature makes it impossible for you to ever get one, then in my opinion you are either out of touch with reality or at the very least chronically stupid.  The result is the same whether the condition stems from a medical condition or self induced delusion.  I’ve had the misfortune of being surrounded by these type of people my entire life.  I grew up around them.  I can recall very few conservatives that you could actually sit down and have a rational conversation with without running into a brick wall of denial at some point or other.  This goes for paleo-cons, neo-cons, bigot-cons, John Birch-cons, Jingoist-cons, fundamentalist-cons and any other kind of cons you can think of.  Come to think of it, the length of time it takes to reach that point may actually be a good yardstick for gauging their capacity to perceive reality.  What’s really striking is that if you press the matter, it often becomes apparent that their purpose for engaging in conversation is not the same as yours.  Their focus is not on discovering the truth but on protecting and shoring up their own beliefs.  This can be very frustrating when it dawns on you that they really are not interested in finding out if you are right or not.  It puts them in a conundrum because to admit this to themselves would be to face the fact that they don’t have a grip.  They seem to be able to sidestep this inconvenient item quite nimbly –that is unless you point it out.  Conservatives do not tend to be truth seekers.

After years of wrestling with this I’ve come to the conclusion that this is in the very nature of what we think of as conservatism itself.  You could spend your entire life and get absolutely nowhere with most of these people.  I have to say that I have made headway with some of them but it took decades and any awakening that occurred probably had more to do with the intrusion of reality in their lives in a way that they simply couldn’t ignore than anything I ever said.  They like to accuse you of being as thick as they are but that’s just projection.  They’re big on that.  My working hypothesis up until now has been that this is because most forms of conservatism are the result of some sort of indoctrination or other.  The purpose of indoctrination is to make you stupid and fodder for manipulation.  Belief systems (ideological, political, or religious) generally come as a package deal.  Therefore compromise either in the form of dissonant evidence, ideas or interests cannot be tolerated.

Liberals and progressives may hold strong beliefs but I would argue that they are generally not ideological.  Conservatives project that we are ideological since they are.  Theirs is just different than ours.  They have their “fair and balanced” media giving them their truth we have our “liberal” media giving us ours.  They have their “faith based” science; we have our science based science, etc.  What is structurally impossible for them to understand is that fact based reality has absolutely nothing to do with ideology.  Faith based reality has everything to do with ideology and nothing to do with reality.  Sorry, there can only be one reality.  Basically, for liberals, beliefs don’t trump facts and for conservatives facts don’t matter.  I could go off here into a discussion of inductive vs. deductive reasoning but I’ve been there and done that in these pages several times before.  Suffice it to say that conservatives trend toward deficiency in the rational thought department.

The simple reason why so many of them tend to be dumb as a stump is because people who go through life with blinders on cannot possibly ever learn anything.  Ignorance is built into conservatism.  

Conservatives are generally biased, thick headed, more often bigoted than not, intolerant, oppressive, dogmatic, arrogant, obstinate, autocratic and aristocratic by definition.  The more a person displays these tendencies, the more “conservative” they are deemed to be.  The interesting question is:  Which came first, ideology or pathology?  And why are certain types of people attracted to conservative doctrine and not others?  As I said, I assumed that it was because they are uninformed, dis-informed, uneducated, and brainwashed [indoctrinated].

This brings us back to John Dean.  John Dean says that the neo-cons and religious fascists who have taken over our government and the Republican Party are so radically different from traditional (Barry Goldwater) conservatives [like him] that he is far closer to us liberals.  The difference he says is that traditional conservatives believe in democratic government which is rooted in compromise, the neo-cons and the religious freaks clearly don’t.  This is due to what John Dean calls the “Authoritarian Personality”.   Authoritarians are incapable of compromise.  He has come across an interesting body of evidence.

Shortly after WWII a group of sociologists at Berkeley became concerned about whether fascism could happen here.  It can.  [See: TW Adorno et al., The Authoritarian Personality (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1950)]  They discovered that there is about 23 to 25% of the population that would follow a leader like George Bush over the edge into full blown Fascism without thinking twice (probably not even once).  [If this is true, the possibility of Bush’s ratings getting lower has bottomed out.]  These authoritarian personalities are attracted to authoritarian leaders, ideology, or religion.  There are two scales which can be measured by psychological tests: that of the “Authoritarian Follower” and the “Authoritarian Leader”.   Authoritarian Followers trend toward submission to authority.  Authoritarian Leaders or “social dominators” are inclined to dominate others (evidence suggests that this is often due to a Testosterone imbalance).  People who score high on both scales are called “Double Highs”.  This is rare in women, by the way.  Ann Coulter could be one of the exceptions.

I asked John Dean what is known about how these personalities are created.  It could be nurture or nature or varying degrees of both.  More recent studies of children have shown that children who are timid and insecure are more likely to become conservatives.  They have a hard time tolerating diversity in people or ideas and feel more comfortable being told what to think and do.  They tend to trust authority.  Children who are the most confidant and comfortable with themselves are more likely to become liberal or progressive since they are better able to tolerate diversity and have the confidence to think for themselves, cultivate an open mind, and have consideration for others.  Authoritarian personalities are rare among liberals and progressives (about 10% at most).

I later wished I had thought to ask John Dean how this squares with George Lakoff’s theory of the conservative “Strict Father Morality” and progressive “Nurturing Parent Morality” dichotomy.  It seems to fit.  Being brought up in an authoritarian family might tend to make you timid and insecure, thus perpetuating conservatism.  A more egalitarian society might tend to turn out more progressives since more children would be raised in a secure and nurturing environment.

I disagree with John Dean’s assertion that the Neo-cons and Christian fascists are fundamentally different from the Barry Goldwater type conservatives.  [But then I don’t consider myself conservative.]  In my view, conservatism is a social dominating, authoritarian type philosophy in general.  The difference is in degree and the fact that the conservatives have managed to take total control of the government.  Let’s not forget, this is what they do every time they get power to one extent or another.  The “moderates” are miffed because they have been ejected from the Republican Party.  I think John Dean is sober enough to realize this.  Even though he can’t come right out and say it lets face it, it’s what he is really saying.   Whether or not you think authoritarianism or even conservatism is a sickness depends on how you look at it.  Sort of like the phrase: “spare the rod and spoil the child.”

I think we owe a lot to John Dean of all people for bringing this out.  The knowledge that there is scientific evidence that conservatives, especially neo-cons are authoritarians, and that a large portion of them are that way not because of some legitimate philosophical point of view but more likely because of a twisted psychological make up is useful knowledge indeed.  Viewed in this light the conservative ideology going all the way back to Edmond Burke can be seen for what it really is: the overactive musings of quivering, socially stunted, half witted assholes in need of some sort of orthodoxy to justify their naked agenda to dominate the rest of us and protect their power and privilege.  Isn’t that what we always thought?  And by the way there IS a clinical term for a person with no conscience, it’s called “psychopath”.

Thanks to Town Hall and Elliott Bay Books

Antonia Juhasz- The Bush Agenda with Patti Goldman and David Korten Monday July 31st, 7-8 PM

Meet the new agenda, same as the old agenda –but on steroids: the expansion of the corporate global trade agenda with cluster bombs.  In other words: Total Economic Takeover with Naked Military Power!

Meet the new American credo: Give Me Corporate Globalization or Give Me Death… or was it “and give me death?”  Oh well, no matter, it’s all the same.  You see, we saw through their little “Free Trade” rouse so now they are taking the gloves off.  They have such nasty little tempers when they don’t get their way don’t they?  And they never seem to give up.  We should kill them all.  -All the corporate “persons”, that is.

The full title of Antonia Juhasz’s book is The Bush Agenda: Invading the World, One Economy at a Time.  She is a policy analyst with the Institute for Policy Studies, project director of the International Forum on Globalization and a former aid to Congressman
John Conyers.  The addition of author David Korten, Patti Goldman managing attorney for Earthjustice Legal Defense Fund, you, and me makes this a meaningful WTO shut–down reunion.  I wish we didn’t have to keep having these reunions.

Fr. Roy Bourgeois "The Struggle for Peace in Latin America", Monday July 24th, 7-8 PM

Father Roy Bourgeois, founder of School of the Americas Watch was back in town in May and gave an inspiring talk at St. Patrick's Catholic Church on Broadway.   This time he had a lot to say about the changing situation in
Latin America.  He and his fellow conspirators have managed to persuade many countries such as Venezuela, Argentina, Uruguay, and Brazil to withdraw their militaries from the US commando [death squad] training programs and there is a new bill currently sitting in the House Armed Services Committee to close the SOA (now called the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation).  There are now 134 cosponsors of the bill-H.R. 1217 plus sponsor Rep. James McGovern).

These are the cosponsors from our state:

Rep Baird, Brian [WA-3]
Dicks, Norman D. [WA-6]
Rep Inslee, Jay [WA-1]
Rep Larsen, Rick [WA-2]
Rep McDermott, Jim [WA-7]
Rep Smith, Adam [WA-9]

See also: www.soaw.org

Rich Lang- Fascism in America: Is it Coming??? The Fascism of Christian Nationalism, Monday July 17, 7-8 PM

The obvious answer is that fascism has been here to one extent or other for some time as Joey Pipia’s reading of the Fourteen Points of Fascism at this beginning of this program will attest (see also: www.stopfascismtoday.org).   The good Rev. Rich whose talk “George Bush and the Rise of Christian Fascism” was featured on Pirate TV two years ago is back with more information on the origins and the dark forces behind Christian Reconstructionism and Dominion Theology.  The important factor that everyone needs to be aware of is that this is not a religious movement and theologically speaking cannot even be properly considered Christianity pre se as Reverend Lang makes clear.  It has very little to do with the teachings of Jesus.  It is a right wing Fascist political movement that was manufactured and funded for the express purpose of bringing the reactionary right to power in the
United States.  This is fascinating and essential information.  While looking up the date of the last program with Reverend Lang [3/15/04] I came across this rant I wrote for that program.  I enjoyed it so much I have decided to reprint it for your perusal:


This is for you, all you “chosen ones” out there.  The ones who drive those gas guzzling SUVs with Jesus fish, flags and “Power of Pride” stickers all over the place; sucking up and spewing out all that fossil fuel that somehow got there a billion years before God officially created the earth.  You’re running a bit rich on the intake and lean on the uptake.  You don’t worry a whole lot about global warming.  Haven’t you heard?  It doesn’t matter, Jesus is coming.  He’s coming to get all the true believers like you and take you to heaven where you will all live happily ever after.  You call yourselves “pro life”.   You worry yourself broke about zygotes but couldn’t care less about children puréed by US cluster bombs.  You are so proud to be among the chosen ones in God’s chosen “free market” fatherland.  You’re all crossed –up.  Somebody has led you down the garden path.  You’ve somehow confused the teachings of Jesus with Fascism.   But you like it in your Garden trance.  As long as you keep away from that nasty apple of knowledge, it’s nice and secure in there.  In fact, you’d feel a lot more secure if all of us were just like you.  That way, when Jesus comes he will take us all to heaven too…with you.  The ability to distinguish between a fact and a fairy tale has been lobotomized away.  That’s why you believe our children should be taught religion, your “religion”, in our school…because only you know the truth.  You don’t have to worry about nasty old complicated reality intruding into things when you’re in a trance.  It’s too awful to contemplate anyway, especially with the likes of you around making sure that Armageddon comes…no matter what.

It seems like everybody has somebody like you in the family.  Thankfully they don’t necessarily stay fundamentalist fanatics forever.  Someone deprograms them or they become so overwhelmed by cognitive dissonance that they snap back.   But that’s not important in the overall scheme of things.  Your movement isn’t going away anytime soon.  It’s growing.  There’s a sucker born every minute and as long as you get them young enough, [and de-fund public education] there is sure to be an infinite supply of stupid poor people to give you money and fervently turn out to vote against their best interest.  Because after all, that’s what it’s all about, the right wing resurrected you and brought you back from the dead where you had been since the Scopes trial.  They needed you, because nobody in their right mind except the filthy rich would vote for them otherwise.   That’s why your heretical sack of crap has to be exposed for what it is.  To be intolerant of intolerance is not intolerance.   Your belief system has little to do with Jesus and more closely resembles a cult or an induced form of psychosis than a religion.  Everybody who has been around you knows that reasoning with you doesn’t work.  The most merciful thing that anyone can do for you personally and everyone else is to humiliate you, shame you, and ridicule you and your ideology until you feel like such a fool that it either exorcises this foolishness out of you, or you and all you brainwashed goose-stepping bible thumping idiots are driven back into the closet.  And take your twisted cross with you.  As Rev. Rich points out, like it or not, we live in a country that is dominated by the Christian dialectic paradigm.  The best thing the Democratic Party can do is to present an opposing spiritual story, one rooted in the real world struggles for social justice.  In other words, it is going to be either the Martin Luther King or the Pat Robertson story that prevails.  It’s not the time to be polite or complacent about it.  -Ed

Dr. Mustafa Barghouti- Consolidating Apartheid: Current facts on the ground in Palestine, Monday July 10, 7-8 PM

Dr. Mustafa Barghouti, physician and prominent Palestinian leader recently spoke at the Rachel Corrie Peace Works Conference in Olympia about the Israeli master plan to annex Palestine which we are seeing played out daily in the news.   Dr. Barghouti recently ran as an independent candidate in the Palestinian presidential elections.  Following the talk will be an interview with local International Solidarity Movement activist and Hydro-Geologist John Reese.

See Also:



Lt. Ehren Watada Refuses War in Iraq, Monday July 3rd 7-8 PM

For 4th of July week, I can’t think of a better subject than the example of courage and true patriotism displayed by Lt. Ehren Watada the first commissioned officer to refuse (re)deployment to the illegal occupation of Iraq.  This program comprised by the media action team of the Olympia Veterans of Peace # 109 (the Rachel Corrie Chapter), includes two press conferences given by Lt. Watada on June 7th where he explains his position that because of the illegal and immoral nature of the US invasion and occupation of Iraq and the ongoing war crimes, he has concluded that his orders to deploy are illegal under US law, international law, and military code.  Also appearing is Law Professor Marjorie Cohn, and several people from WA Military Families Speak Out and Veterans for Peace.

See also:




Greg Palast- Armed Madhouse Part 1, Monday 6/19 7-8PM
Greg Palast- Armed Madhouse Part 2, Monday 6/26 7-8PM

BBC investigative reporter extraordinaire and best selling author Greg Palast was back in town last week with his intense new book: Armed Madhouse: Who’s Afraid of Osama Wolf?, China Floats, Bush Sinks, The Scheme to Steal ’08, No Child’s Behind Left, and Other Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Class Wars in a benefit for Earth-on-the-Air Independent Media,
Pirate Television, and Voter Action.  Much thanks to those who turned out for the help. Your support is greatly needed and appreciated.  Those who came got to see an eye opening and often hilarious show.   For those who didn’t make it, you still have the opportunity to see the entire hour and 20 minute talk plus Greg’s brand new 30 minute Venezuela documentary on Pirate TV over the next two weeks.

Thanks to
Elliott Bay Books

David Barsamian- Louder Than Bombs, Monday 6/12,
7-8 PM
David Barsamian is back plugging his new book- Louder Than Bombs: Interviews from The Progressive Magazine (South End).   Long time viewers will know that the host of Alternative Radio is always animated, engaging and informative.  Of course this time is no different.  The new book is a collection of twenty interviews with an array of political and cultural thinkers, including Angela Davis, Danny Glover, Vandana Shiva, Edwidge Danticat, Amartya Sen, and Eqbal Ahmad, among others.  But you will just have to buy it and read it if you want to find out more -as usual Dave spent all the time talking about the sorry state of the media and current affairs.  You won’t want to miss it.

Another thing you may not want to miss is a chance to meet Greg Palast.  The investigative reporter extraordinaire who exposed the theft of the last two Presidential elections in advance and author of the new book- Armed Madhouse will be at the Seattle Town Hall this Thursday at 7:30PM.  Advance tickets are still available for $10 from Elliott Bay Bookstore.  At this point Greg has received six “Project Censored Awards,” as well as the ACLU’s Upton Sinclair Freedom of Expression Award, and the Financial Times’ David Thomas Prize.  Proceeds benefit Earth-on-the Air Independent Media, Pirate Television, and Voter Action (www.voteraction.org/).

Thanks to Elliot Bay Books

Kevin Phillips- American Theocracy, Monday 6/5 7-8 PM

Foolproof write-up:
In American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush, Kevin Phillips explored how the Bush family systematically used its financial and political empire—its influence built up over four generations—to gain the White House and thereby subvert the very core of American democracy. Now, in American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century, Phillips looks to the future of the Republican Party and the rogue political coalition that is driving
America towards Armageddon and insolvency.

Phillips knows the Republican Party from the inside—former Nixon aide, longtime Republican, and past party theoretician, he wrote the seminal The Emerging Republican Majority nearly 40 years ago. Author of a dozen books including the New York Times best-selling Wealth and Democracy, Phillips is a powerful critic of the political and economic forces that are ruling—and jeopardizing—the United States. Now, in American Theocracy he looks to the past as well as the future, showing how historically, global over-reach, militant religion, energy upheaval and ballooning debt have helped tumble leading world powers from ancient Rome to the British Empire. Sadly, it is this same axis of ills that has come to define
America’s political and economic identity in the past decade.

With American Theocracy, Phillips demonstrates how this current trajectory is likely to have catastrophic results not only for Republicans, but for
America itself. It is a book no American can afford to ignore.

Thanks to Foolproof Performing Arts

Beyond the Patriot Act, Monday 5/29 7-8 PM
While we’re on the subject of illegal state/corporate wiretapping, legalized warrantless black bag jobs into your home, bank account, medical, library and phone records, secret detentions, torture and all the rest of the symptoms of our rapid and deliberate slide from corporate to police state fascism, we might as well take a deeper look.  Who knows, it might just scare some people into action.  For that purpose I am broadcasting the second part of last week’s
ACLU Town Hall discussion with John Dean and Lisa Graves on "Spying, Secrecy, and Presidential Power".   I’m going to kick off the show with an extraordinary and terrifying documentary produced by the ACLU titled “Beyond the Patriot Act”.   The ACLU has been producing one of these every month under the series title “The ACLU Freedom Files”.  See: http://www.aclu.tv

See also:
NSA Has Massive Database of Americans' Phone Calls

Phone Companies Face Massive Lawsuit for Spying

Here are a few things you can do for a start:

1) You can sign the ACLU online petition against warrantless spying on U.S. citizens.
Sign the petition!
2) If you use any services from AT&T, BellSouth, or Verizon, you can call them up and tell them you will not do business with Big Brother and are taking your patronage elsewhere.  You may also consider joining the lawsuit.  Learn more: Electronic Frontier Foundation http://www.eff.org/
3) You can join the national day of protest against the monopolies who are committing these and other crimes against democracy:
Help us spread the word for these actions. Audio PSAs are available at:


John Dean- Spying, Secrecy, and Presidential Power, Monday 5/22 7-8 PM From www.aclu-wa.org

John Dean Blasts Abuse of Power at Forum
A May 4 town hall sponsored by the ACLU-WA brought together hundreds of people to learn about the abuse of executive powers by the Bush administration, and how it parallels the excesses of the Nixon presidency more than 30 years ago.  About 650 people thronged to Town Hall Seattle for the ACLU's Town Hall Meeting on "Spying, Secrecy, and Presidential Power."  The forum featured former White House counsel John Dean, who blasted the Bush administration's secrecy and autocratic tendencies.  They also heard from Lisa Graves, the ACLU's senior counsel for legislative strategy, who explained the serious dangers of the National Security Agency's warrantless surveillance program.  Dozens of people stayed afterward for book sales and signing hosted by Elliott Bay Books.  KUOW's Ross Reynolds moderated the event.

Carl Mayer- Ending Corporate Rule: A Report from the Trenches, Monday May 15th 7-8 PM

For all people who wish to step into their power as citizens and shed the feeling that their voice is not relevant to the democratic conversation because they can not succeed in their struggle against corporate dominance over our "democratic" process, Pirate Television presents an evening with Carl Mayer.  Coming all the way from New Jersey, Mayer was described by the New York Times as a populist crusader and maverick lawyer.  Mayer is noteworthy for his scholarly works on the Supreme Court's treatment of corporations as persons with civil rights as well as for his hard-hitting work as a Special Prosecutor for New York Attorney General Elliot Spitzer.   He even did undercover work, wearing a wire in a corporate fraud investigation that Sixty Minutes reported resulting in jail terms for over seventy-five elected officials and corporate lobbyists on bribery, extortion, and corruption charges.  Sometimes you just need a little inspiration.
Thanks to Trinity United Methodist Church and the Alliance for Democracy, South Puget Sound Chapter www.SoundDemocracy.org
See also: www.newjerseyuntouchables.blogspot.com/

David Wasdell- The Tipping Point: The Positive Feedback Crisis in Global Climate Change, Monday May, 8th 7-8 PM

David Wasdell: The Positive Feedback Crisis in Global Climate Change
At the prestigious April 6th Kistler Book Award Ceremony, organized by Seattle's Foundation for the Future, David Wasdell (Director of the Meridian Programme) was introduced as the world's leading authority on the feedback dynamics of climate change.  This program is based on the opening keynote presentation he gave the next morning, to the 'Crossroads for Planet Earth' workshop attended by a group of distinguished scholars and scientists also convened by the Foundation for the Future.

Feedback dynamics concern previously little understood climate mechanisms triggered by global warming which feed back upon themselves accelerating the process and eventually causing runaway global warming.  David Wasdell explains that there are 6 categories of feedback mechanisms.  Almost all earth’s systems known to effect climate change are now in a state of positive feedback.  Because we have squandered the last 20 years, we have already passed the point whereby global climate change can be avoided.  What this new information means is:  If we don’t take drastic action to save the planet immediately we will soon reach a “tipping point” whereby nothing can stop runaway global warming and there will ensue a mass extinction event the likes of which has only happened 5 times in Earth’s history.  The only thing likely to survive will be moss and we are going to suffer greatly on the way out.  For those who say: “That’s too depressing to think about”, I say: Just think how depressed you’re going to be when it’s too late to do anything about it.

Although it’s too late to stop climate change, it can be mitigated until it eventually turns around and there is still time to stop absolute catastrophe, but not much.  To those who say: “Sounds like science fiction to me, I didn’t see this on my TV so it must not be true”, I say, you will, but I wouldn’t expect anyone reading this to actually believe their corporate TV would tell them anything important so enough said.   However, Time just did a whole issue on this subject last month- “Be worried. Be very worried.”  See: http://www.energybulletin.net/14616.html.

To those who say: “This corporate regime is so corrupt there’s not a chance that we will be able to turn things around in time so we might as well accept that we’ve had it”, I say that it is only inevitable that there will be a massive last ditch effort to save the planet at some point or other.  The question is: Will it be too little too late and what will Halliburton and Exxon’s cut be?  But seriously, you would be surprised what can happen when you realize that your back is against the wall.  One need only remember the
Roosevelt era.  The President halted auto production by decree, ordered massive armaments production, instituted universal rationing, and mobilized the entire country.  So you think this crisis is less serious than the bombing of Pearl Harbor?  Check out the attack on New Orleans.  That was just the first hit.  Hurricane seasons are going to get progressively more catastrophic from here on out.  What’s worse, there is a whole arsenal of other weapons aimed at us.  Or more accurately- that we are aiming at ourselves.

First we need to educate ourselves, then we need to wise up our political leaders, if they can’t be wised up, then we need to replace them fast.  As David Wasdell points out, every day that we delay increases the monumental task at hand.  I spoke to Sen. Maria Cantwell last week.  I thanked her for her work on the environment and asked her if she had heard about the feedback crisis.  She said she hadn’t.  That’s what I’m talking about.

I think this is the most important subject I’ve ever covered.  For that reason I encourage everyone to tape this show and pass it around to every politician you know.  In fact, every person you know.  I’m making DVDs.  I’ll give them to you at cost: $5 (includes postage).  If you want a disc of the supporting text presentation: “Facing Bifurcation Crossroads in Context”, you can have that too.  I’m sure Mr. Wasdell won’t mind, you can also find it on his website and the entire interactive report: “The Feedback Crisis in Climate Change.”  Of course, if you feel generous and want to give the normal price (donation) $20 to support Pirate TV you are certainly welcome.  As always, I’m interested in your “feedback” too.  –Ed

Thanks to the Foundation for the Future
See also: www.meridian.org.uk

John Harrington- The Challenge to Power, Monday May 1st, 7-8 PM
I’ve noticed that most of us chronic peace and justice activists don’t seem to have a lot of money.  If we did, perhaps we’d be more like those greed heads that spend all their time worrying over the fate of their stock portfolios rather than the fate of the earth.  But what would happen if some of us suddenly did come across a sizable chunk of change?  Or what if we actually decided to take some time to plan for our own future as well as that of the country?  That could present a lot of problems which those of us who are perpetually broke have never had to worry about.  Where would we put our nest egg so as to keep it safe and provide a hedge against inflation?  How do we make sure that our investments don’t work against us and our social agenda?  In fact, is it possible to use our money to actually further that agenda?  Is it possible to invest in a way that empowers us as opposed to giving power to our enemies?

Enter the socially responsible investment movement.  One of the originators and leading figures in that movement is John Harrington.  He began by initiating the South Africa disinvestment campaign over 30 years ago.  This is the movement that finally forced an end to Apartheid.  He shows us how we can use our money to take on the power that large corporations have over our governments and challenge the race to the bottom, the destruction of the environment, corporate globalization, and the threat to democracy itself all the while keeping our money local where it does the most good.  He has a long track record in this.  He is one of the founders and former chairs of Working Assets and Progressive Asset Management.  He now runs his own socially responsible investment company called Harrington Investments, www.harringtoninvestments.com, and has a new book that is a treasure chest of ideas and strategies to help you invest in a better world: The Challenge to Power: Money, Investing and Democracy, www.challengetopower.com.  Be sure to watch the show next week but in the meantime here are a few tips to get you started:


Pratap Chatterjee- Iraq, Inc.: A Profitable Occupation, Monday April 24th 7-8 PM

We all heard about the looting of Iraq but that was a penny-anti side-show.  Why screw around heisting a few priceless antiquities when there are hundreds of well connected war profiteers like Bechtel, Halliburton, AWB, DynCorp, Lockheed, etc., who have taken the art of looting where no “person” has gone before?  Nobody does looting like these guys.  And why stop at looting Iraq when you can loot the mother load – the US treasury?  These guys know where the action is, all right.  They wouldn’t waist their time siphoning off a million here or a million there, we’re talking trillions here!  So let’s face it, like anything else, if you really want looting done right, you need to hire a professional and Pratap Chatterjee is here to show us how it’s done.  We realize that this may be a sore subject now that you have just sent in your taxes, but lighten up.  There’s nothing you can do about it anyway –it’s a Republican Congress remember?  So just sit back and marvel at the masters of war… pardon me, did I say Masters of War?  I meant Masters at WORK! 

Pratap Chatterjee is an award-winning journalist who writes for the Bay Guardian in San Francisco.  He is managing editor and program director of CorpWatch, and the author of the recent book, Iraq, Inc.: A Profitable Occupation.

See Also: www.corpwatch.org

Scott Ritter- Iraq Confidential, Monday
Former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter’s never-before-told story, Iraq Confidential: The Untold Story of the Intelligence Conspiracy to Undermine the UN and Overthrow Saddam Hussein, reveals in detail how the CIA manipulated and sabotaged the work of the UN to achieve America’s hidden foreign policy agenda in the Middle East. He also provides great insight into the tribalism and rank gangsterism that propelled Saddam to power and kept him there.

Thanks to Town Hall & Elliott Bay Books

Eman Khammas, Women Say No to War, Monday April 3rd, 7-8 PM
Eman Khammas, Women Say No to War -Part 2, Monday April 10th, 7-8 PM

From www.womensaynotowar.org

CODEPINK brought a delegation of Iraqi women to the US for March 8, International Women's Day, as part of their campaign Women Say No to War (see www.womensaynotowar.org ).  These women have had to risk their lives getting to
Jordan to request visas, and they take great risks just by coming to the U.S. to speak out against the occupation. So we are very grateful and honored that they will be with us. As they told us when they decided to come, "It is worth the risks because the only people who can stop this war are the American people."

Eman Ahmad Khamas - Journalist, translator and activist. Married with 2 daughters, she lives in
Baghdad. Eman is a member of the Women's Will organization which focuses on defining and defending women's rights outside political party interests and opposing incarceration of women as hostages. Eman regularly publishes articles on women's conditions in Iraq under the occupation in a monthly newspaper called Oqol (Minds). For the past three years she has been documenting crimes committed by US and Iraqi forces. She will be bringing video documentation of these crimes. Eman is also involved in mobilizing emergency relief (medicines, food and clothing) for victims living under the occupation, especially women and children living in refugee camps.

Votergate- Monday 3/13 7-8 PM

Continuing our coverage of the theft of the last two elections, we will take a look at the extraordinary documentary: Votergate, which features
Bev Harris author of Black Box Voting www.BlackBoxVoting.org and is available for free download or DVD purchase at this website: www.votergate.org.  Following the film we will feature the rest of last week’s talk by Mark Crispin Miller about his new book: Fooled Again: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election & Why They'll Steal the Next One, Too (Unless We Stop Them) and the Q&A from Dr. Enas Mohamed’s talk from the week before.

Mark Crispin Miller- Fooled Again, Monday 3/6
7-8 PM

Mark Crispin Miller is a journalist and media critic. He is a professor of media studies at New York University where he directs the Project on Media Ownership (PrOMO). He is well known both for his writing on all aspects of the media and for his activism on behalf of democratic media reform. His books include Boxed In: The Culture of TV, The Bush Dyslexicon: Observations on a National Disorder, and Cruel and Unusual: Bush/Cheney's New World Order.  His talk this week centers around his latest book, Fooled Again: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election & Why They'll Steal the Next One, Too (Unless We Stop Them).  This is a fascinating talk and excellent prep for the Forum on Computerized Voting Machines with Bev Harris and Paul Lehto at the Labor Temple the next evening.  -Two people that we have featured on Pirate TV repeatedly.

Labor Temple Event:
March 7, 7 PM
2800 1st Ave
Panel of Experts:
Bev Harris: Founder of BlackBoxVoting.org, author, Black Box Voting Paul Lehto:  Attorney who exposed touch screen voting irregularities in Snohomish County in the 2004 election and has a lawsuit pending against Snohomish County and Sequoia Voting Systems, Inc.
Richard Borkowski:  Computer programmer, software tester/ designer, data base analyst.

Dr. Enas Mohamed -Health and Environment in Postwar Iraq, Monday Feb. 27th 7-8 PM

Something to think about is the fact that the Nazi’s don’t have a thing on the Fascist/ corporatist regime that rules this country or for that matter the United States in all of it’s “glorious” history.  I used to be horrified looking at the pictures of German bulldozers plowing the piles of bodies into trenches that they made sure to show us back in Junior High.  I was depressed for months.  -Hitler, the perfect villain.  Part of the propaganda campaign to indoctrinate us about the “good war” and inoculate us against the new boogie men, the never ending line of new boogie men.  It’s a dangerous world out there, full of the worst kind of “evil doers”.  Soon thereafter, I found out about the 3 or 4 million South East Asians that the American war machine was busy eviscerating at that time and the fact that I was destined for the draft.

Then some years down the road, when I found out about Agent Orange and watched as many of my friends suffering from terrible debilitating illnesses were ignored, belittled, and discarded like so much trash by the very same war machine that they had been so foolish to serve, I felt pretty good about myself.  That I had had the rare sense to realize that reality is important for some reason; that I had taken the time to do the necessary research which eventually enabled me to see what was right in front of my face [but not on my TV], made me feel superior to all those poor suckers who had carelessly allowed themselves to fall into the meat grinder.  I realize now that I was just lucky.  If it hadn’t been that I was in the right place at the right time, it could just as well be me flashing back visions of greasing kids and old ladies from helicopters or dying slowly from Dioxin.  “I just can’t wait to ‘Kill Some Gooks’”, so my childhood friend blathered on and on -back from boot camp for a week in route to Viet Nam.  [The fool had actually joined the Marines.]  That’s the last I saw of him.  I wonder if he “bagged” any “Gooks”.  I wonder how he feels about it now.

Let’s just leave the almost complete annihilation of the indigenous peoples of this continent out of it, something which Hitler admired and used as a template for the Holocaust -by the way.  Let’s leave out the genocidal horrors of the conquest of the Philippines, and US atrocities in this hemisphere before WWII.  Hell, let’s even drop the 10 or 15 million our government has slaughtered in all of its 50+ wars and invasions since.  Not to mention the far greater toll taken due to the work of all those highly skilled CIA covert operators, Economic Hit Men from the NSA, and Free Traders from Harvard.

Let’s just consider what we’ve done to Iraq.  Let’s leave out the fact that Saddam Hussein is a creation of US secret foreign policy.  Let’s leave out all the US war crimes such as the use of cluster bombs, white phosphorus, and attacks on civilian infrastructure.  Let’s leave out the deliberate targeting of hospitals, journalists, civilians, doctors, systematic torture, arbitrary arrests, and illegal detentions… for the time being, let’s even set aside the fact that the entire war is illegal and a war crime.

If it’s the number killed and maimed that is the measure by which the “evilness” of empires is gauged, Hitler is not even in the same league, because it’s doubtful that even he could have conceived of the poisoning of an entire country forever.  From here on out, millions of people [and animals] exposed to the soil of Mesopotamia -or anywhere the wind blows for that matter [recent evidence compiled by British scientists revealed that airborne radiation levels in Europe quadrupled after “Operation: Shock and Awe”] will be suffering and dying from the effects of Uranium weapons for as long as humans walk this earth.  That is a crime that is unprecedented in history and puts us in a class all by ourselves.  -Something to think about, if you are one of those few who do.

Dr. Enas Mohamed, an Iraqi medical doctor who escaped Saddam Hussein and is now doing research at the University of Washington is back on Pirate TV this week.  She believes in hope –for hope’s sake, I think.  She was in Iraq last September and has an update on the situation of the people and their land and how the US invasion has affected their health.  It’s a subject that is not on your TV [except here].  She has a lot of pictures.  Some of them are rather disturbing.  This is one of those shows that you might want to tape and share with others.  It might occur to them that reality is important.

Lola Vollen -Surviving Justice, Monday Feb. 20th 7-8 PM

Lola Vollen, a medical doctor who is the founder and Executive Director of The Life After Exoneration Program says that a conservative estimate of the number of innocent people among the 2.2 million inmates within what many call the “Criminal Injustice System” in the United States is 6 or 7%.  That works out to over 130K innocent people incarcerated.  More than most countries incarcerate altogether.  While the causes for this are many, the toll this takes on American families are huge.  Victims suffer from PTSD and other symptoms similar to those of long term torture victims and most states such as ours do not have mechanisms of compensation and those few that do are shamefully inadequate.  It literally takes an act of Congress such as in the recent case of Wilton Dedge for even the most blatantly egregious cases to receive any compensation at all.  There is no system of safeguards or accountability for prosecutors or defense lawyers who abuse their power and prosecutorial misconduct is so hard to prove that it is almost nonexistent.  In short, all aspects of the Criminal Justice system are an abomination; the problem is bigger and more wide-spread than anyone could imagine and it’s about time we did something about it.

This week’s show features Dr. Vollen co/editor with Dave Eggers of the new book Surviving Justice: America’s Wrongfully Convicted and Exonerated and Wilton Dedge who were in town last week to talk about the book and the extraordinary documentary film After Innocence which opened last week at the Varsity Theater in Seattle.  The powerful first-person accounts of people who were wrongfully tried and found guilty in the criminal justice process are heart wrenching and aggravating tales that you won’t soon forget.  There is still time as of this post to see the film which closes after Thursday.

See Also:

Lila Rajiva- The Language of Empire, Monday Jan 23rd, 7-8 PM

Now that Norman Solomon has set the scene on how corporate media propaganda machinery makes war easy in the USA.  Let’s take a step or two deeper into the darkness with a systematic analysis of how that machinery covers up the horrific crimes of the Bush imperial regime.  Her new book is: The Language of Empire: Abu Ghraib and the American Media.

See also: http://www.dissidentvoice.org

Norman Solomon- Spinning Us to Death, Monday Jan, 16th 7-8 PM
Norman Solomon points out that media complicity with Presidents who want war is nothing new in US history, but there has never been a time that media has been consolidated so tightly in the hands of giant corporations who’s profit margins are dependent on war profits.   Join us for an enlightening hour with syndicated columnist, co/founder of FAIR- Fairness and Accuracy in Media, and the founder and executive director of Accuracy in Media.

Edith Mirante- Down the Rat Hole, Monday Jan 9th 7-8 PM
If you want an inside look at what is going on in Burma, you can’t do any better than Edith Mirante.  She first crossed the boarder illegally from Thailand in 1983 where she chronicled crimes against the population and the environment by the brutal dictatorship.  Obsessed with Burma’s struggle for freedom, she successfully lobbied to stop the shipment of Agent Orange to the dictatorship by the US government and started a successful corporate disinvestment campaign.  She has been called “One of the great adventurers of our time.”   In her ongoing commitment to bring the true story of
Burma and its peoples to the world, she has written two books: "Burmese Looking Glass" and the most recent- “Down the Rat Hole, Adventures Underground on Burma's Frontiers".   See: http://d30021575.purehost.com/indiv_titles.html#rathole.  By any standard this is a remarkable woman and a fascinating story which the world needs to hear.
See also: Project MAJE www.projectmaje.org
Thanks to Orca Books

Haynes Johnson- The Age of Anxiety, Monday Jan, 2nd 7-8 PM Although many may think that with the collapse of the Soviet empire, McCarthyism may be a thing of the past.  The right wing smear machine is stronger than ever.  Red-baiting has morphed into liberal-bashing and terrorism has replaced communism as the bogeyman of choice to scare the public into accepting endless war for corporate profit.  Many of the tactics dished out daily by the corporate sponsored right wing think [PR] tanks, their cronies in the White House and mouthpieces in the media were first market tested by Joe McCarthy.  Now is as good a time as any to take a look back at the career of the red-baiting demagogue and his legacy for today.  The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Haynes Johnson draws this parallel tying the current climate in Washington to the 1950s in his new book, The Age of Anxiety: McCarthyism to Terrorism.  Join us as we as we take a little trip back to the present.

Craig Winters, Update from the Campaign, Monday December 12th
7-8 PM

What the Campaign?  It’s the Campaign to Label Genetically Engineered Foods, of course.  Why label them?  Because if everybody knew how much of their food was “Franken-food” they wouldn’t buy any of it.  And that is exactly why corporations like Monsanto don’t want you to know.  Longtime viewers will remember the dynamic and terrifying talk we featured by Craig Winters back in February of ’03.  Craig Winters, executive director of the Campaign to Label Genetically Engineered Foods (http://www.thecampaign.org) is back to give us an update.  This talk was taped in August at a meeting of the Eastside Fellowship of Reconciliation after a sneak preview of the extraordinary new documentary: The Future of Food by Deborah Koons Garcia.  The film has since been released to theaters. Those of you who were lucky enough to catch it at the Varsity last week can use this show as a study guide but otherwise the talk stands on it’s own as an assessment of the current state of affairs.  The program also features an eye-opening educational cartoon titled: The True Cost of Food -courtesy of the Sierra Club.

Si Kahn -The Fox in the Henhouse, Monday December 5th, 7-8 PM

Eighty percent of all in the world that is worth owning is now in the hands of corporations –and they want it all.  Singer and grassroots organizer Si Kahn talks about his new book: The Fox in the Henhouse: How Privatization Threatens Democracy (co-authored with Elizabeth Minnich, Berrett-Koehler).

See also: http://www.grassrootsleadership.org/

Militarism in the Schools- A Community Forum, Monday 11/28 7-8 PM

Seattle was the first city where a PTA actually banned military recruiting in a High School.  This happened at Garfield HS and was followed up with a Seattle School Board ruling that puts strict limits on military recruiters and bans their organization from the premises if they are caught lying.  There was a forum on Militarism and Counter-Recruiting held at Rainier Beach HS last month.  The keynote address was delivered by Rev. Robert Jeffery who had some powerful observations about the current situation.  Also featured were Amy Hagopian – the Garfield PTSA president who organized the ban, Jelani Jackson from Rise One, and Nina Laboy from the AFSC.  Find out what’s going on as Seattle once again leads the nation in progressive action.  Followed by this forum we will hear from three “Gold-star Moms” who lost loved ones in Iraq.   They spoke at the recent America in Solidarity event at Town Hall.  Congressman Jay Inslee was also on hand. We will hear part of his speech.  He, along with Dennis Kucinich, led the fight in the House against the resolution which gave George Bush authorization to use force in Iraq. 

Andrew Gumbel- Steal this Vote, Monday 11/21 7/8 PM

Andrew Gumbel correspondent for the Independent and winner of the Project Censored Award gave a fascinating talk about the history of election fraud at Town Hall a few weeks ago.  His new book is Steal This Vote: Dirty Elections and the Rotten History of Democracy in America (Nation).  He provides much needed context to the recent theft of the 2000 and 2004 national elections.  There is evidence that there was vote fraud again in this Month’s referendum election in Ohio see:
Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman:
Has American Democracy Died an Electronic Death in Ohio 2005’s Referenda Defeats?

Mark Wilson -The Anti-War Alternative, Monday, 11/14 7-8 PM

Why is it that Oregon gets to have a Senator like Ron Wyden who had the courage to vote against the invasion of Iraq and has introduced legislation to curb the PATRIOT Act and we are stuck with Maria Cantwell who when she was getting calls from her constituents at the rate of 100 to one against, went ahead and voted for the War and the PATRIOT Act.  Two policies that just about everyone other than her and the people who share her bubble could see would turn out to be absolute disasters for this country.  The problem is, under our present system, it’s almost impossible to unload a lemon once you’ve got one.  None the less, election time is the only time we have to hold them accountable.  For this reason I spent an hour interviewing Mark Wilson who is challenging Maria as a Democrat for her seat.  I think you will find that he speaks the truth and he speaks for us.  I think it’s important to remember that irregardless of the odds, when we support those rare candidates like Mark who are driven by a commitment to serve the people in spite of the odds, we empower ourselves.  Let’s consider a few historic examples.

Jim McDermott, now there’s a true blue fighter for New Deal principals, peace, and anti-imperialism and I am sure we are all proud of him, but is there anybody still around who remembers the old Jim?  Not just 5 or 6 years ago Jim McDermott was one of the most fervent champions of “Free Trade”.  Remember the so called “NAFTA for Africa” bill he introduced and pushed through Congress?  Africa got more debt in exchange for structural adjustment programs, corporate rule and control of their food and medicine, higher prices, and a huge cut in social spending.  In other words: more starvation, poverty, sickness, and death.  What kind of New Deal is this?  Nothing and nobody could seem to get through to him, neither I nor scores of others who spent hours on the phone talking to his chief trade aide who said he had “never been able to understand the concept of neo-liberalism.”  Not the Democratic Party leaders in the districts.  Nor the Women in Labor Conference members who booed Jim off the stage.  Not the 60-100K activists who shut down the WTO.  The only thing that finally got through to Jim McDermott was when Joe Szwaja ran against him as a Green and garnered 20% -the highest percent a Green had gotten against any candidate running for national office.  It suddenly dawned on Jim McDermott that he was vulnerable on this issue.  Joe lost but we won a genuine progressive Congressman anyway.

Where did the New Deal itself come from?  FDR is often credited with saving Capitalism.  William Domhoff likes to point out that real reform only happens when the system is on the verge of collapse.  Was he talking about capitalism?  I think not.  It was pretty obvious that capitalism had pretty much collapsed.  Domhoff says it was the two party monopoly, the foundation on which monopoly capitalism rests in this country.  Eugene Debbs, the leader of the Socialist Party who had been thrown in prison under the Alien and Sedition Acts for speaking out against US involvement in WW1 came within a hair of becoming Governor of California.  Eugene lost but we won the New Deal.

This also happened over a hundred years ago when the populists actually took over the Democratic Party.  As Charles Derber points out in his book: Regime Change Begins at Home- Freeing America from Corporate Rule, rebellion against corporate rule in the Gilded Age led to the formation of the People’s Party in 1892.  In 1896 they took over the Democratic Party and ran their leader William Jennings Bryan for President.  William lost but the organizing led to a rise of public awareness and anti-corporate sentiment that eventually resulted in victory for Teddy Roosevelt and the Progressives who busted the big trusts and ushered in an era of corporate regulation ending the first corporatist regime since the American Revolution.

History has demonstrated that in order for real reform to come, it has to first be spoken.  Then momentum must be built by endless organizing.  But above all, politicians only listen when you back it up with a treat to take away their power.  I think you will find after spending this hour with Mark Wilson that his travel all over the state articulating the things that we need to hear is already a demonstration of his deep commitment to the good of the common people and that he is worthy of our support.  The more power we give him, the more we empower ourselves.  –Ed

George Galloway in Seattle, Monday- 10/31, 7-8 PM

I can’t remember the last time I had so much fun watching television since British MP George Galloway testified before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations [read: witch hunts] last May 17.   The Senate Republican feather-weights thought they could get away with a cheap smear of the anti war MP with charges that he had profited from the Oil for Food scandal but they were out of their league.   They must not have counted on him coming to Washington to address them directly.  Mr. Galloway made quick work of Republican Chairman Norm Coleman of Minnesota and turned the tables castigating the Senate hypocrites for their disastrous invasion of Iraq and the “pack of lies” used to sell it.  Calling the hearings the “mother of all smokescreens”, he went on to rip them for another 45 minutes.  Even CNN described Galloway's speech in the Senate as "a blistering attack on US senators rarely heard" in Washington.  Whenever I need a little cheer all I have to do is pull out that C-Span tape and I’m in stitches for days.
George Galloway is Respect party MP for Bethnal Green and Bow in East London.  He was in Seattle at Kane Hall last month talking about the current situation and his new book Mr. Galloway Goes to Washington (The New Press).  If you haven’t heard this talk yet, you don’t want to miss it.  I’m broadcasting the entire thing including the Q&A.  This will take up the first show and about 15 minutes of the second to be broadcast the next week.  Then will be Thom Hartmann and Rachel Maddow.
Mr. Galloway’s National Tour was sponsored by: The New Press, International Socialist Review, Center for Economic Research and Social Change, the National Council of Arab Americans and Co-sponsored by The University Bookstore at UW-Seattle.  Thanks to all for letting us tape and thanks to Carl Chatski for taping.
For more info and to see George Galloway’s Senate testimony, see: http://www.mrgallowaygoestowashington.com
For info on America in Solidarity see: www.americasolidarity.com

Thom Hartmann and Rachel Maddow –The Iraq War and It’s Toll on Working Families/ George Galloway part 2, Monday- 11/7, 7-8 PM

Longtime viewers will remember Thom Hartmann and his book: Unequal Protection- the Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human Rights.  The show we did about the origins of Corporate Personhood in the United States was one of the most requested Pirate Television shows ever.  He is tantalizing speaker.  Thom Hartmann is now a radio host and can be heard on Air America [1090 AM in Seattle] at 9 every weekday morning.  He was in town with Rachel Maddow another Air America host [5 AM weekdays] to keynote the recent America in Solidarity Conference at Town Hall titled: The Iraq War and It’s Toll on Working Families.  Rachel and Thom also fielded questions from the audience, we’re showing it all.  The conference also featured Congressmen Jim McDermott, Jay Inslee, and Gold Star Families for Peace.  We hope to show some more of this in the near future.

Seth Donnelly- The Massacre of Cite Soleil, Monday October 24th 7-8 PM

Seth Donnelly, an activist affiliated with the Haiti Action Committee went to Haiti last July with a delegation of US trade unionists and other human rights workers. While there he received information about a massacre of unarmed civilians, mostly women and children carried out by 300 UN troops with tanks and a helicopter gun ship in the middle of the night.  The next day he went to the area with a video camera and documented the carnage.  The UN has been carrying out massacres in Lavalas strongholds on a regular basis but you wouldn’t know it if you get your information from US corporate media.  There has been a virtual news blackout on
Haiti since the violent US/French overthrow and kidnapping of the democratically elected President Jean Betrand Aristide and the installation of former World Bank official Boniface Alexandre.  On his return, Seth immediately met with reporters from the NY Times and other media outlets but the only US mainstream outlet to cover the story was the Village Voice.  He was on Democracy Now! the very next day.

This week in a
Pirate Television exclusive, we are going to spend an entire hour with Seth Donnelly and show all of his grisly footage some of which was seen on Democracy Now!.  We will be exploring the question of why the UN is massacring civilians and taking a look at the history and effects of 2 centuries of US/French sponsored repression and neo-colonial policies which have resulted in the poorest, most destitute country in the hemisphere.  We hope that this will spur you to action.  There are a lot of local Congressmen and Senators including Jim McDermott who need a wake-up call on this issue.  They need to join with Congresswoman Maxine Waters and other members of the Black Caucus to demand an abrupt end to the ongoing butchery and the restoration of Haiti’s duly elected President.

What you can do:

Read the report:
Final Delegation Report on UN Massacre at Cite Soleil:
Growing Evidence of a Massacre by UN Occupation Forces in Port-au-Prince Neighborhood of Cite Soleil | US Labor and Human Rights Delegation to Haiti

Go to Haiti Action to get daily updates on the situation in Haiti, links to other alternative news outlets covering the story, and information about further things you can do.

See also:
The Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Ed Begley- Live Simply So that Others Can Simply Live, Monday October 17th, 7-8 PM

Ed Begley received six Emmy nominations for his portrayal of Dr. Victor Ehrlich on the hit TV series, “St. Elsewhere”.  Since then he has appeared in several feature films.  His role as an environmental leader is less well known.  He turns up regularly at
Hollywood events on his bicycle, drives an electric car, and lives in a self-sufficient home powered by solar energy.  He gave the keynote address to this summer’s Rolling Thunder Democracy Festival.  We will broadcast this talk which lasts for about a half hour and then the second half of the show will be part two of the David Rovics concert from last week.

David Rovics in Concert, Monday October 10th 7-8 PM

Time to take a break from all the heavy duty political talk and listen to some heavy duty political music; David Rovics, folk singer/songwriter and political lyricist extraordinaire was here this summer with a new song- “Song for Cindy Sheehan” which he debuted here in Seattle. 

“Carrying on the folk traditions of Phil Ochs, Woody Guthrie and others, but with a sound and style all his own, David Rovics is one of the finest troubadours alive today. His songs bring home the real stories that need to be told... of life, death, resistance, love, humor, inspiration and solidarity.... past, present and future. His live shows can move a crowd to tears and raucous resistance in equal measure.”  

Thanks to the Stop the Wall Campaign: www.stopthewall.us
www.davidrovics.com (listen to Dave's music here!)

Robert Fitrakis- Making the Case for Election Fraud in the 2004 Election, Monday Sept. 26th 7-8 PM
Robert Fitrakis- Making the Case for Election Fraud in the 2004 Election pt. 2, Monday Oct. 3rd 7-8 PM

I know I’m going to catch hell for this but let’s face it we live in a dictatorship.  That’s what you call it when rulers gain power by means other than a free and fair election, isn’t that right?  We saw Bev Harris three or four times telling us how they were going to do it.  We saw Greg Palast expose how they did it in Florida in the 2000 election.  Then he showed us how they were setting up to do it in Ohio in 2004.  Then they did it.  And they did it in such a massive and blatant way that would never go over even in a banana republic.  Then we heard damning evidence of vote rigging right here in our own state from Attorneys Paul Lehto and Randy Gordon.  Now comes the most comprehensive compilation of documentary evidence yet of the massive vote fraud in Ohio.  Political scientist and attorney Dr. Robert Fitrakis was one of four election protection attorneys to file suit that the Ohio results not be certified until after a recount. Now, with Harvey Wasserman and Steven Rosenfeld, he has co-authored Did George W. Bush Steal America’s 2004 Election?: Ohio’s Essential Documents (Columbus Institute of Journalism/www.freepress.org).

I’m going to broadcast this eye-opening talk in two parts.  Part two which contains the Q&A section of the talk will start out with a rebroadcast of the Ohio footage which I obtained from “We Do Not Concede” (www.donotconcede.com) last January, shot on the ground as the Republican Jim Crow vote suppression tactics played out on Election Day.  You need to see this if you haven’t yet, and if you have, you need to see it again.  I asked Dr. Fitrakis what he thinks gives the Bush gang the nerve to think they can pull off something like this in broad daylight and get away with it and where were the Democrats?   I’ve been pondering this for a long time and you may recall that I’ve asked several people similar questions.  I have never gotten a direct answer, I suspect because either no one can really answer it or nobody wants to go there.

Food for thought:  This is what I think.  I don’t think the Democrats are spineless.  It’s much worse than that.  I think they’re in on it.  When I asked my friend Kat L'Estrange who managed this tour and that of Greg Palast if she thought the Democrats actually wanted to win the last two elections, she put it something like this: The DLC military industrial corporatists who run the Democratic Party let the corporatists who run the Republican party get away with stealing the last two elections because the empire needs to grab the oil.  And since the Democratic Party (other than the inner circle) is full of peaceniks, there was no way that they could have pulled off an outright invasion of Iraq themselves.  That’s why, the Congress voted unanimously to fund 14 permanent military bases in Iraq and the Democrats won’t talk about it, that’s why they almost all voted for the patriot act, that’s why they voted for the war, etc.-right down the line.  That’s why they didn’t challenge the Ohio results, and that’s why they didn’t fight to stop the theft of the election in Florida or challenge any electors in either case.  That’s why the Democratic Party as an organization acts like it has never heard of touch screen vote fraud or has lifted a finger to stop it.  That’s why John Kerry swore up and down that every vote would be counted and then didn’t.  And that’s why there is no point in crying over our lost democracy when there wasn’t one.  The whole thing is rigged.  What we’re loosing is the illusion of democracy.  Only time will tell, but this might be a good thing.  I think it’s high time we stop waiting around for someone from the Democratic Party (if we only choose the right one) to save us.  We are the ones we have been waiting for.

Now before the party faithful types get all high and mighty and start calling me a “conspiracy theorist”, try to remember that I didn’t say this is what happened, I’m just saying that the more time goes on, that’s how it looks.  And if anyone out there has anything to say to convince me otherwise, I would gladly hear it.  -Ed

Bruce Gagnon- The Battle for America's Soul, Monday Sep. 12th and 19th 7-8 PM

We saw his powerful horrifying documentary- Arsenal of Hypocrisy, now Bruce Gagnon, Coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space, takes us all the way back to the American Revolution with an eye-opening look at the history of military industrial complex corruption in the US through the terrible Neo-Con master plan for our future.  This is an extraordinary talk.  I am broadcasting the entire thing in two parts over the next two weeks.  Part 2 also contains an interview with Steve Lough, President of SEVA- the Seattle Electric Vehicle Association.   Thinking about getting off of oil?  Now might be a good time.  Check out the options.

Bruce Gagnon’s talk was recorded in
Seattle a St. Mark's Cathedral August 7th.

Randy Gordon- Sustaining Our Democracy in the Age of Technology, Monday 8/29
7-8 PM

Regular viewers may recall the program I did last January: Jim Crow and the Stolen Election of 2004 which featured an interview with Attorney Paul Lehto and footage of Jim Crow like vote suppression in Ohio compiled by "We Do Not Concede" (www.donotconcede.com).  You may also recall that Mr. Lehto had been investigating vote shifting related to touch-screen voting machines and had released a study on voting discrepancies in Snohomish Co. which was posted at: www.votersunite.org.  Randy Gordon, who is Mr. Lehto’s Attorney in the lawsuit, Lehto and Wells v. Sequoia and Snohomish County gave this workshop at the recent Seattle Rolling Thunder Democracy Festival.  Mr. Gordon who is also running for Congress in the 8th District talked about recent developments in this groundbreaking case and poses the question: Is it really a good idea to privatize our voting system?  Find out the latest and attend a very interesting discussion on the state of our democracy and what we can do about it. 

Randy Gordon is an Adjunct Professor of Law at Seattle University School of Law where he won the Outstanding Faculty Award in 2003 and a Governor of the Washington State Bar Association.  To read the lawsuit, see his website: www.randygordonforcongress.com

Thanks to Seattle Thunder, www.seattlethunder.net

Jim McDermott- The Drama of the
Downing Street Memo, Monday August 22nd 7-8 PM
Bill Moyer of the Backbone Campaign organized this extraordinary event which was taped last month at the
Seattle Labor Temple.  The program features Bill and a crew of “Backbone Players” who give a hilarious reenactment of the Downing Street Minutes and a talk by Congressman Jim McDermott on what it all means.  The program also features Rory Steel, with a statement from Congressman Jay Inslee's office, and two testimonials by Bear Dyson and Lisa Gill from Military Families Speak Out.  For an excellent article about the event see:


see also:

Thanks to Carl Chatski for videotaping the event.

Jim Motavalli- Green Living, Monday August 15th,
7-8 PM

Jim Motavalli, editor of E: The Environmental Magazine and an author/collaborator on a number of ecologically-oriented books along with Co/Editor Sally Deneen an expert on organic food, talk about their new book, Green Living: The E Magazine Handbook for Living Lightly on the Earth.  The talk focuses on ways to live long and prosper while making aspects of your home, work, family, and financial life environmentally-smart and sustainable.  The talk is followed by part 2 of Arundhati Roy and David Barsamian’s Town Hall appearance from last August broadcast last week.

Arundhati Roy- The Checkbook and the Cruise Missile, Monday August 8th,
7-8 PM

This interview by David Barsamian of the world famous activist and author was given at the Town Hall one year ago this month.  Sorry I took so long to get it on, but if you haven’t seen it, now is your chance.  Some of Arundhati’s books include: The God of Small Things, The Checkbook and the Cruise Missile, Power Politics, An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire, and The Cost of Living.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books
Town Hall
And Mike McCormick

[List 5] September 18th 2004 to August 1st 2005

Benjamin Barber- Building a Strong Democracy in a World of Malevolent Interdependence, Monday, August 1st, 7-8 PM

This talk was given June 23 at Seattle Public Central Library and presented by DEMOS and the WASHINGTON CENTER FOR THE BOOK AT THE SEATTLE PUBLIC LIBRARY, TOWN HALL SEATTLE, and THE WASHINGTON ASSOCIATION OF CHURCHES. Known for his timely and current books - Jihad vs. McWorld and, more recently, Fear's Empire: War, Terrorism, and Democracy- Benjamin Barber spoke on: "Building a Strong Democracy in a World of Malevolent Interdependence." "In this dark time of hollering unreason, rampant cynicism, and preemptive war(s), Fear's Empire is a volume indispensable to our survival . . . The book is bracing for its clarity, humanity, large-mindedness, and common sense - and downright precious for its sound suggestions as to where we, as a nation, should be going." -Mark Crispin Miller. Benjamin Barber is a principal with The Democracy Collaborative and a
University of Maryland professor.
For more information on Demos, see http://www.demos-usa.org.

Remembering Srebrenica, July 25th
7-8 PM
Right now as the world stands by in the face of the ongoing genocide of the Moslem community in
Darfur, we relive the tragic events surrounding a similar event that occurred ten years ago as the Moslems in Bosnia were systematically ethnically cleansed.  This program takes a look at the how that was allowed to happen.  It features a BBC investigative documentary and clips from a memorial given last week by the Bosnian Moslem community in Seattle.

Alternative Energy Resources, Monday July 18th, 7-8 pm
This workshop was taped at the Beyond Oil Conference in Seattle May 14th and features Rich Feldman, Executive Director of the Workers Center of the King County Labor Council and Washington State Apollo Alliance regional organizer; Jennifer Krill Director of the Zero Emissions Campaign for Rainforest Action Network (RAN); and Patrick Mazza, Research Director of Climate Solutions.

More than most people may realize, there are a plethora of solutions to the climate change/peak oil/endless war abyss that the corporate “oil-igarchy” has gotten us into and spends countless millions keep us distracted from and ignorant of.  Many of these solutions are already in the works.  Join us in this detailed discussion to take stock of the situation and find out what is being done to make our region a center of alternative energy technology and production.

See also:

George Lakoff:  Reframing Politics; Monday July 4th,
7-8 PM
Appropriately for July 4th: Howard Dean calls Dr. George Lakoff “one of the most influential thinkers of the progressive movement.” His latest book Don’t Think of An Elephant has opened the eyes of progressive groups and individuals across the country. Lakoff seeks to transform the political debate, revitalizing progressive discourse by reframing progressive policies in ways that speak to shared American values. Conservatives have already realized that individual issues need to be linked to an overall moral and ethical perspective. They have seen how issues fit together and they have created a language of conservatism that reflects their values. In the process, they have appropriated fundamental American virtues, such as freedom and compassion, and have given them conservative definitions. They have trained their advocates, policymakers, and media spokespersons in the use of this language to move public discourse in a conservative direction. They have successfully reframed issue after issue to make their language the everyday language of much of
America. Lakoff’s American Voices appearance will be one step toward reframing the political debate, reclaiming progressive values, and exploring the shared values among very different progressive organizations.

Dr. Lakoff has appeared on television and radio programs, such as Now and All Things Considered. He recently briefed over 100 members of Congress on strategic framing of political issues. Labor unions, environmental groups, reproductive rights groups, peace groups, religious organizations, social equity groups, human rights groups and many other progressive organizations are clamoring for access to Dr. Lakoff and his work.
Thanks to FoolProof.org

Thomas Frank- What's the Matter with
Kansas? Monday June 27th 7-8 PM

In the next couple weeks, a close examination of the right wing PR/propaganda machine and how we can counteract it.  This coming week: Thomas Frank – founding editor of The Baffler, and author of earlier books of sharp perception, One Market Under God and The Conquest of Cool – was here at to help explain some things. His serious and funny book, What’s the Matter with
Kansas? How Conservatives Won the Heart of America (Owl, newly in paper with a new Afterword) says more about ‘us’ and our confusions, why so many in this country go so strongly against their own interests and well-being, more aptly than anything else around. “What’s the Matter with Kansas? is the most insightful analysis of American rightwing pseudo-populism to come along in the last decade. As for Kansas: however far it’s drifted into delusion, you’ve got to love a state that could produce someone as wickedly funny, compassionate, and nonstop brilliant as Tom Frank.” – Barbara Ehrenreich. “The year’s most prescient political book.” – Frank Rich, The New York Times.

Thanks to
Elliott Bay Books

Loretta Napoleoni- The Woman Who Followed the Money, Mon. June 20
7-8 PM

Nothing is as it seems.  In Congressional testimony a few years back, the CIA revealed that at least 60% of the export earnings, that is, the dollars that
Mexico and Colombia use to pay off the IMF, World Bank and other loans from the major multinational banks such as City Corp, Chase and Morgan comes from the illegal drug trade.  In 1983 a National Intelligence Council document stated that it was probably more like 75%.  That is just two countries.  Then there’s Burma, Afghanistan, Peru, Bolivia, Thailand, Panama, Belize, Guatemala…, all in all James Mills in his groundbreaking 1987 bestseller, “The Underground Empire”, estimated that at that time, at least 33 countries were either directly ruled by narcotrafficking organizations, or top level officials were central to narcotrafficking.  We are not just talking about drug producing countries here.  There are a large number of countries such as Panama in which the entire banking system was set up to be a way station for narco-dollars.  These countries are completely dependent on the illegal drug trade to stay afloat and US multinational banks are heavily extended there, especially in Latin America.  What would happen if say, the US Congress were to be watching Sixty Minutes some day [or better yet Pirate TV] and suddenly wake up to the fact that the draconian “drug war” was immoral, unjust, and self defeating, and switch to a harm reduction policy that took the profit out of illegal commodity markets?   One thing is certain.  The banking system would collapse.  Could this be the real reason why our government has 2 million people in prison and spends 30 billion a year on a “drug war” that doesn’t stop drugs?   Could this also have something to do with why there is a war on terrorism that only serves to increase terror?

Loretta Napoleoni says that the underground economy of which a third comprises the “new economy of Terror” is a huge chunk [5%] of the world financial system and because this money is laundered in the
US and Europe, our economy is dependent on it.  The Italian economist, journalist, banker, Fulbright scholar, and author, estimates through 10 years of careful research that this economy amounts to 1.5 trillion dollars, twice the GDP of the United Kingdom.  She says that in the 90’s because of deregulation of international financial markets brought on by neo-liberal policies, terrorists [armed organizations] were able to go transnational, operating and raising money in many countries at once, linking up to the legal economy, the illegal economy [mostly illegal capital flight], and the criminal economy.  A good example of this is al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.  Of course, this practice was pioneered by the CIA [as were al-Qaeda and bin Laden] with their financing of terrorist wars through multinational ponzy schemes/drug laundering operations such as the Nugan-Hand Bank and later the BNL and BCCI, but I digress.  The point is, fighting terror with war only feeds the terror monster, not just because what goes around comes around, but because as she says, the terror economy thrives on “war and political destabilization.”   Much like the phony drug war, the “war on terror” is a big circle and a farce.  Just as the drug war is in reality a price support mechanism for illegal commodity markets, the war on terror only functions to increase terror and make the masters of war richer and more powerful.  This is why I was so glad that I had a chance to talk to Loretta Napoleoni myself this time as she was back in town to promote the updated paperback version of her recent book: “Modern Jihad: Tracing the Dollars behind the Terror Networks”, now renamed, "Terror Incorporated".  Nothing is as it seems- until you follow the money.

See also: www.lorettanapoleoni.com/
Thanks to
Elliott Bay Books

Karen Parker- Is Depleted Uranium Illegal?  Monday 6/13
7-8 PM

Most certainly it is, -by all measures of international law.  Hear Karen Parker tell you why at her press conference recorder May 5th.

Karen Parker, internationally recognized human rights attorney and expert in armed conflict law, gave this special presentation and informal discussion regarding her work with the United Nations to have Depleted Uranium removed from use in weaponry.    
Karen Parker addressed her successful work with the U.N. Sub-Commission on Human Rights that declared 'DU' weaponry in violation of human rights and existing international humanitarian laws as specified in the Geneva Conventions and the body of established International Law regarding war. The U.N. now bans DU weapons from use in war under their classification as weapons of mass destruction (WMD).
See website for information about Karen Parker's work with The Association of Humanitarian Lawyers at http://www.webcom.com/hrin/parker/
Karen Parker also answered questions about the lawsuit filed against Us Military Operations in
Iraq.  [See: http://www.webcom.com/hrin/parker/appeal.html] Attacks against Falluja medical facilities violated armed conflict law.

See the Organization of American States petition against the
USA for war crimes in Falluja at http://www.webcom.com/hrin/parker/petition.html
Karen Parker's Bio: http://www.webcom.com/hrin/parker/biograph.html 
Thanks to Kären Ahern, Pirate TV Bainbridge Island Broadcasting program originator [klahern@msn.com] for putting on this event.

Michael Klare- Beyond Oil: Challenges and Opportunities for Peace, Jobs, Justice, and Sustainability; Monday June 6th, 7-8 PM Oil prices are expected to soar over the next decade as world supplies begin to decline. How can the environmental, labor, and peace movements work together to build a strong culture “beyond oil”? Come help us explore the both the difficulties and opportunities for moving beyond oil peacefully, with social justice, sustainable living, good work, and environmental restoration.

Two weeks ago Michael Klare gave the keynote speech at the Beyond Oil conference in Seattle and talked about the elephant that is in all of our living rooms but strangely not on our TV.  Why?  Because the all powerful corporations that buy your eyeballs don’t want you to worry your little head about things like global warming and the end of oil.  It might not be good for business, at least the type businesses they operate- namely, oil business, war business, and the SUV business just to name a few.  So shop ‘till you drop –and don’t worry, be happy.
Michael Klare is Professor of Peace visionary author of “Resource Wars” (2002) and “Blood and Oil” (2005), Professor of Peace & World Security Studies, Hampshire College and defense correspondent for The Nation magazine.

Jim McDermott- The Facts about Social Security, Monday May, 30th 7-8 PM

In response to the White House “Ownership Society” propaganda barrage aimed at convincing the public that it’s time to “reform” Social Security, the
36th District Democrats decided to wage an old fashioned door to door, precinct by precinct education campaign.  It culminated in a town hall style community forum with Rep. Jim McDermott and two economic analysts.  In this program we are going to take a close look at the reactionary right’s dream of dismantling what’s left of the New Deal by aiming at Social Security and answer a few questions.  Among them:  Is Social Security really on the verge of collapse?  Using actual historic economic growth figures as opposed to estimates trotted out by the Bush Administration, is the trust fund ever likely to run out at all?  Is your money better off in the stock market?  Why is means testing a bad idea?  What will happen to benefits if they are indexed to prices?  What happened in other countries that privatized their Social Security systems?  If there really is nothing wrong with the system, why is the Bush Administration focusing on it?

Here’s a question you may be asking yourself: Why aren’t you seeing any of this on your TV?  If you did there wouldn’t be an issue in the first place.  The CEOs and PR hacks in the White House think that with almost total media domination and non-stop propaganda, they can sell a refrigerator to an Eskimo.  It’s not going over.  That’s a hopeful sign.  Maybe we’re not all quite as stupid as they think we are.
Thanks to the 36th District Democrats

King Wilkerson- Inside the American Gulag, a Case Study: The Angola 3; Monday May, 16th 7-8 PM

Founder of the Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party


The Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola is the largest prison in the United States. Over 80 per cent of its inmates are African-American.

The prison has been a plantation since the 1700s, when hundreds of slaves worked the fields. Most of the former slaves came from the African country of
Angola. Angola still operates on the plantation model today. Prisoners perform back-breaking labor, harvesting cotton, sugar cane, and other crops for 4 cents an hour from dawn to dusk.


All three men initially arrived at
Angola with sentences for unrelated robberies, and a dedication to political organizing.

Herman Wallace and Albert Woodfox founded a chapter of the Black Panther Party at
Angola. Their activism made them targets of the all-white prison administration which falsely convicted them of murdering a white prison guard in 1972. They were sentenced to life in prison by all-white juries.

Robert King Wilkerson arrived at
Angola in 1972 and his reputation as an activist preceded him.  He was immediately placed in solitary confinement. He was later charged with and convicted for a murder he did not commit, even though the actual killer admitted he had acted alone in self-defense. Wilkerson was shackled and had his mouth taped shut during his trial, in which he was indicted by a grand jury made up completely of white men. After 29 years in solitary confinement he was exonerated and released in 2001 without compensation.


In 1971, Woodfox and Wallace organized the Black Panther Party at
Angola. The Angola Panthers not only challenged the prison administration, but they also organized to end aspects of the inmate social order that hindered prisoner unity and played into the hands of the guards. The Panthers risked their lives to protect younger and weaker inmates from the rape, prostitution, and sex slavery that pervaded prison life.

The Panthers also worked to mend the schism between black and white prisoners that the prison officials manipulated to their advantage, a difficult feat considering that the prisoner housing, dining halls and worksites were still racially segregated, with privileged living arrangements and work assignments going to white prisoners. The BPP also exposed the widespread corruption of the people who ran


The American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit on behalf of the Angola Three charging that 30 years in solitary is cruel and unusual punishment, and a violation of the Constitution. The suit calls for Wallace and Woodfox to be released into the general prison population and for all three men to be financially compensated. The case is pending.

For more information visit www.angola3.org
Write-up contributed by Carl Chatski

Tariq Ali –Street Fighting Man, Monday 5/9

When I was a teenager, for some reason I only owned one Rolling Stones album.  It just happened to be Beggar’s Banquet.  I used to listen to Street Fighting Man and wonder what the hell that song was about.   I can’t say I ever met the Rolling Stones, but it seems I did get to meet the man who inspired that song.  Tariq Ali has been street fighting for a long time.  His new book, Street-fighting Years: An Autobiography of the Sixties (Verso) is an updated memoir, Tariq Ali’s chronicle of his coming of age as a young journalist – from Pakistan to England, and from there around the world (Paris, Hanoi, Prague, Bolivia, the U.S.), with memorable encounters (Malcolm X, Bertrand Russell, Henry Kissinger,
John Lennon & Yoko Ono) along the way.  In his Town Hall talk last week, he didn’t talk a whole lot about all that but he did have a lot to say about the current situation.  Why don’t you take a listen and then pull out some of those old records.  Times really haven’t changed all that much, have they?

Ev’rywhere I hear the sound of marching, charging feet, boy
’cause summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the street, boy
But what can a poor boy do
Except to sing for a rock ’n’ roll band
’cause in sleepy London town
There’s just no place for a street fighting man

Hey! think the time is right for a palace revolution
But where I live the game to play is compromise solution
Well, then what can a poor boy do
Except to sing for a rock ’n’ roll band
’cause in sleepy London town
There’s no place for a street fighting man

Hey! said my name is called disturbance
I’ll shout and scream, I’ll kill the king, I’ll rail at all his servants
Well, what can a poor boy do
Except to sing for a rock ’n’ roll band
’cause in sleepy London town
There’s no place for a street fighting man

Dr. Enas Mohamed: The Radioactive War, Monday April 25th 8:30 to 9:30 PM
This Monday for the last show of the season we will be broadcasting part 2 of Dr. Enas Mohamed’s talk which focuses on the effects of depleted uranium on Iraqis and US soldiers.  Since I had just broadcast Dr. Janan Hasan the week before her last show –“Stories from Baghdad”, I had decided to hold off on this one least I give you all radioactive burn out or risk plunging you into an even deeper depression.  It is a depressing subject but one that I feel needs continuous exposure since it stands out as a stellar example of successful thought control and US corporate media complicity in this ongoing crime.  Virtually no one who gets their information from “mainstream” corporate media in this country has ever heard of depleted uranium unless they or someone they know is dying or suffering from the effects of exposure to it and many of them don’t even know what it is they are suffering from.  Regardless of how familiar you are with this subject, I think this show is well worth watching because of the detail in which Dr. Enas goes to explain what Depleted Uranium is and how it affects the body on a molecular level. 

Dr. Enas Mohamed is a medical doctor from Iraq and a research scientist who now lives in Seattle.  She is a Steering Committee member in INOC (Interfaith Network of Concern for the people of Iraq), a member in NIHAC (Northwest International Health Action Coalition), and a member in WPSR (Washington Physician for Social Responsibility).

Javier Couso- Hotel Palestine: Killing the Witness-, part 1 Monday April, 11th, 8:30-9:30 PM
Javier Couso- Hotel Palestine: Killing the Witness-, part 2 Monday April, 18th, 8:30-9:30 PM

Is the US military deliberately targeting journalists in Iraq who are unwilling to submit to their control?  CNN's top news executive, Eason Jordan seemed to suggest that, but he was fired.  Since the U.S. invasion, they have killed 60.  The US blusters at the blasphemous suggestion that they would murder journalists outright, all of whom were warned by the military at the onset against operating independently, but they systematically attacked Al Jazeera, Al-Arabiya, and the Palestine Hotel all in the same day.  Javier Couso is the brother of Jose Couso, a Spanish cameraman who was one of two journalists killed on that day by an American tank shell directed at the Palestine, the Baghdad hotel filled with unembedded journalists.  Couso is on an American tour seeking your help to obtain accountability for the death of his brother.  He was in town last week with an extraordinary documentary, portions of which were featured on Democracy Now last month.  I have been able to obtain a copy and am showing the entire thing this coming week.  I will broadcast his talk the following week.

Thanks to the Interfaith Network of Concern for the People of Iraq (INOC)

See also:
Are U.S. troops killing journalists?
CNN news executive who says so is forced to resign – but he's not the only one raising the question
Hotel Palestine: Killing the Witness - Documentary Exposes the Truth Behind the Attack
CNN News Executive Resigns Over Claiming Troops Targeted Journalists

Dr. Enas Mohamed -Stories from Baghdad, Monday April 4th, 8:30-9:30 PM You may think that we are inundated with too much news from Iraq, but the fact is that if you get your information from the US corporate television, odds are that you don’t really know anything about Iraq at all.   In fact many studies show that the more you watch, the less you know about anything –at least if it’s important, but I digress.  Enas Mohamed is a medical doctor from Iraq and has a Power Point presentation that tells the story about the lives of the Iraqi people in Baghdad today.  Let’s try a little experiment and see how many ‘dis’ and misconceptions you can isolate by comparing the information that is contained in this program and the impressions you absorbed from the corporate media massage.  Dr. Mohamed is a Steering Committee member in INOC (Interfaith Network of Concern for the people of Iraq), a member in NIHAC (Northwest International Health Action Coalition), and a member in WPSR (Washington Physician for Social Responsibility).

Thanks to the Eastside Fellowship of Reconciliation and the Eastside Peace & Justice Coalition

Dr. Janan Hassan: Bringing Home the Iraq War and Occupation, Monday 3/28; 8:30-9:30 PM

It should be now clear to anybody that the reason that the Bush administration was so adamantly opposed to the idea of the International Court of Justice is not for narrow ideological reasons, but because they were planning major war crimes from the very beginning.  This would include the invasion of Iraq which is the very kind of unprovoked aggression that sent the leaders of Nazi Germany to the gallows.  With all the arm twisting, bribing and pressuring that the US could muster, it could not force the Security Council of the United Nations to approve the invasion and this means that unbeknownst to the vast majority of the brainwashed US public that the entire war is a war crime and every single act of violence carried out by US forces in the invasion and the occupation is in itself a crime against humanity.  If we are going to completely disregard international law and all forms of rules of war, then why not promote torture, massacre civilians, destroy civilian infrastructure, and use illegal weapons like cluster bombs, gas, and napalm on civilian populations?  It’s all illegal and the leaders of this country are convinced that they are so powerful that they will never be held to account.

That’s unfortunate because, the leaders of this country and the zombified public that refuses to face reality and use the ample democratic levers that they possess to hold them to account, are likely to be remembered for the most heinous war crime ever committed, that is the poisoning of Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo and several other countries forever with the use of radioactive weapons.   It is estimated that the US vaporized 300 tons of uranium in Iraq just in the first Gulf War.  How much was used in the latest invasion is still a secret but it is certainly far more and was used widely in populated areas.  The fine uranium dust that results when a depleted uranium weapon is exploded has a half life of 3.5 billion years.  It is carried by the wind, gets in the water and food, and contaminates everything.  It will be killing and maiming the people of those countries and this one for as long as humans will walk this earth.

Dr. Janan Hassan is a Pediatrician from Basra Iraq who has been studying the health effects of depleted uranium on children first hand.  She spoke last month at the University of Washington Health Sciences Hogness auditorium.  Using graphs and tables, she demonstrated the huge rise in cancer rates and deformity in children and showed a number of very disturbing pictures.  A panel discussion followed which discussed the health effects of war and occupation on both the Iraqi and American people.  The panel included Evan Kanter, Staff Psychiatrist with VA Puget Sound, who specializes in the treatment of post traumatic stress disorder; Imad Al Janabi, who graduated from high school in Baghdad, has a PhD in architecture and City Planning (1983) and now lives in Tacoma;  and Amal Sedky Winter, PhD, a psychologist, and specialist in cross-cultural matters affecting Muslim and Arab Americans. 

Democracy School .101- Abolishing the Corporate State pt.1, Tom Linzey; Monday March 14th, 8:30-930 PM
Democracy School .101- Abolishing the Corporate State pt.2, Richard Grossman; Monday March 21st, 8:30-930 PM

In the 1860’s the filthy rich, seeing that the era of the slave state was drawing to an end, set out to rule the United States through the institution of the corporation.  Farmers, workers, and intellectuals rose up and tried to stop it in the last 20 years of the 19th century.  This Populist movement as it became known was soundly defeated and as we know, corporations gained human rights and established themselves as “persons” under the law long before most humans in the United States.  This gave corporations the power to use our very own Constitution against “we the people”.  What followed were a century and a half of consolidation of corporate power in law until now as Charles Derber points out, we are residing under the third corporate regime whereby corporations have gone beyond mere nation state dominance and are asserting global sovereignty through institutions like the WTO, World Bank, IMF and other forms of transnational tyranny.  Communities in the path of destruction have had no choice but to try to use the law, the very body of law that gives corporations more rights than real persons, to stop them, one battle at a time.  Over the past century, endless single-issue civic activism has done very little but to enable the few to rule the many more efficiently.  The inevitable environmental and social collapse is going to kill us all if we don’t change our strategy.  That is, instead of battling corporate dominance piecemeal, it’s time to abolish corporate rights to rule over us altogether.

History may record that the modern day fulfillment of the populist rebellion was started not by radical activists at WTO Seattle but by conservative farmers somewhere in rural Pennsylvania.  Farmers fed up with factory hog farms, strip mining, and toxic sludge, tired of fighting loosing legal battles using the corporate rule book, who decided to up and abolish corporate rights in their communities.  How did they do this?  Hint: They had a little help from people like Richard Grossman of the Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy, and Thomas Linzey from the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund who were here last month to give a few talks and set up a “Democracy School” in Seattle.  That’s the last hint you get.  I’m offering this video course for free on Pirate Television.  You just have to watch it if you want to get the rest.  See you in class!

Extra credit:  www.poclad.org
And www.celdf.org

Dahr Jamail- Support the Truth, Monday, February 28th, 8:30 to 9:30 PM
Scott Ritter- Support the Truth pt.2, Monday, March 7th, 8:30 to 9:30 PM

Regularly heard on BBC and Democracy Now, DAHR JAMAIL, independent, unembedded journalist in Iraq spoke to a packed house at the historic Capitol Theater in Olympia last Friday with former weapons inspector Scott Ritter at the "Support the Truth: Stop the War on Iraq" event.  Weary of the overall failure of the US media to accurately report on the realities of the war in Iraq for the Iraqi people and US soldiers, Dahr Jamail went to Iraq to report on the war himself.  His dispatches were quickly recognized as an important media resource and he is now writing for the Inter Press Service, The NewStandard and many other outlets.  His reports have also been published with The Nation, The Sunday Herald and Islam Online, to name just a few.  Dahr's dispatches and hard news stories have been translated into Polish, German, Dutch, Spanish, Japanese, Portuguese and Arabic.  On the radio, Dahr is a special correspondent for Flashpoints Radio and reports for the BBC, Democracy Now!, and numerous other stations around the globe.  Dahr Jamail has spent a total of eight months in occupied Iraq as one of only a few independent US journalists in the country.  Dahr, who was one of the few western journalists to get into Fallujah, showed horrific pictures he took and told the story that the US Government and corporate media are covering up of the US massacre of that city.  

See: http://www.dahrjamailiraq.com
Former UNSCOM weapons inspector Scott Ritter had a lot of new information about the current situation.  He says that if we don’t stop them, the Bush Administration will attack Iran in June and that the Iraqi election results were fraudulent.   The Shiites actually won a majority of 56% but the US changed it so that they would have to form a coalition government thereby allowing the US to manipulate the situation and apply divide and rule tactics.   The last time Scott Ritter came to Seattle he gave a talk to a standing room only packed house at University Temple United Methodist Church attended by 1500 people and left 500 standing outside.  This time you can only see it on Pirate TV.

Jared Diamond: Collapse, Monday 2/21 8:30 -9:30 PM

Geographer Jared Diamond won the Pulitzer Prize for his study of the organic roots of human civilizations in flora, fauna, climate and geology- Guns, Germs, and Steel. He was at Town Hall last month talking about his new book Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, which continues on in that line of study to compare societies that have, sometimes fatally, undermined their own ecological foundations.  It is particularly apt at this time.  Just as one wonders what the person who chopped down the last tree on Easter Island was thinking, we might be wondering what the oil industry and their henchmen who run our government are thinking by rejecting the Kyoto climate treaty.  Civilizations don’t always last forever.  Bedrock reality is that our economy and the very survival of our species are based on nature. 
This important and timely presentation demonstrates the historical consequences that befell societies that ignored that reality as well as examples of societies that have survived because they were able to adapt and live in a sustainable way.  A professor of geography at UCLA, Prof. Diamond has received the National Medal of Science, the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement, and a MacArthur Foundation fellowship, among his various honors.

Shadia Marhaban- (Un) Natural Disasters: The Tsunami, Military Rule in Aceh, and US Policy -Monday 1/14 8:30-9:30 PM

The Bush Administration wants to reinstate US military support to Indonesia.  They are using the Tsunami disaster in Aceh as an excuse.  But this will only make the situation worse.  The Indonesian death squad army has been killing 5-10 people a day in Aceh.  Acehnese human rights and pro-independence activist; journalist; founder and leader of SIRA, an Acehnese human and women’s rights organization, Shadia Marhaban talks about the effect that the tsunami, the ongoing genocide, American oil companies, and US foreign policy have had on the inhabitants of this tiny country.  Presented by ETAN- East
Timor Action Network.

See also:


Ralph Nader, Democratizing the Democratic Party, Monday Jan. 10th 8:30 PM

The announced title of Ralph’s talk was “Stop the War on Iraq and Bring the Troops Home”, however since he was in town to raise money to retire his campaign debt that was mostly accrued fighting frivolous lawsuits filed by the Democrats to deprive him of his right to be on the ballot, his talk ended up being largely about what’s wrong with the Democratic Party.  So I think the name of the program should actually be “Democratizing the Democratic Party”.

I want to take this opportunity to address a few concerns of my own.  I was disgusted and ashamed to see the Democratic Party wage this cowardly campaign to deny ballot access to Ralph Nader but not surprised.  It just proves what I already know; the leaders of the Democratic Party couldn’t care less about democracy.  What surprised me was when I saw an article in my own 36th district news letter seeming to gloat about it.  This made me so angry that I wrote an article about it but decided to hold my peace for the time being.  I’m going to say what I think now.  I take great joy from poking fun at Republicans and Christian fundamentalists about how brainwashed, uninformed and incapable of independent thought they are.  You know that blind faith thing?  I just can’t stand it.  If you’re into that sort of thing, I think you should quit politics and join a church.  For instance when I see Republicans at their convention say one after the other when they’re asked if they saw Fahrenheit 9/11 that they wouldn’t watch it if you paid them a million dollars, I think what are these people doing at a political convention?  They should be in church.  But they are in church.  George Bush is their messiah and he’s on a mission from god.  No wonder they don’t understand separation of church and state.  Church is their state.  The first things you absorb from religion are denial systems: how to ignore or block out something that doesn’t fit into your belief frame.  Right along with it comes inductive reasoning: “this is the truth, the good book tells me so, therefore…”, hence, “Saddam has weapons of mass destruction, the President says so, therefore CIA go find the evidence and tell us what we want to hear.”  

The problem is, even though I’ve been around too long not to know better, I like to carry the illusion that somehow Democrats offer some hope for the country because we’re above all this.  We’re not brainwashed zombies, we’re free thinking.  We’re not easily deceived or mislead because we’re rational.  We’re not cattle.  We don’t accept or do things just because our leaders say so.  We value abundant sources of information and input, we like to weigh the evidence.  We understand that our system of government is not based on “faith or trust”, but proof.  Our leaders are not our messiahs, we don’t trust them any farther than we can throw them and when it becomes obvious that they don’t represent us, we throw them.  We welcome criticism and other points of view.  We value clarity in isolating the root of problems.  We’re smart enough to figure out who the enemy is.  We never allow school spirit to override our belief in fair play.  And above all, we stand for democracy and civil liberties and we back it up.  

I came to political awareness in the time of
John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson’s war.   I have no illusions about the Democratic Party.  I’m here to make it better.  But in the 36th, we like to take pride in ourselves as the most progressive district.  So to see something like that in the Alert, as if the reality of what the Democratic Party was doing, a crime against democracy, free speech and a betrayal in broad daylight of everything we stand for somehow blows right past us, is totally astonishing.  It makes me ashamed to have my name associated with such an organization.   Something else that I find astonishing is that so many people buy into the vilification of Ralph Nader.  That he is running because he is arrogant.  You know what I think is arrogant?  -To assume that we have the right to stand in the way of his right to get on the ballot because we think his votes belong to us.   –To assume that he doesn’t have a right to speak the truth and be heard on the debate because it might hurt us since our party candidates are too bought out and cowardly to speak that truth.  And when the people who run our party, the war mongers and corporate whores who have far more in common with the Republicans than they do with us sell us down the river time and again, so many of us are fool enough to fall for the propaganda line that it’s Ralph Nader’s fault that we loose elections.   As if he is the enemy and somehow the DLC is our friend.  “Double think”, said George Orwell.

I’m having a hard time trying to figure out how we are any different than those Republican zombies we like to laugh at.  As long as we believe that it’s ok to use underhanded tactics to deny people ballot access we negate our right to bitch about Republicans stealing elections and if you think about it that’s probably why the leaders of our party don’t.  You don’t see them making a stink about Ohio [that was left for the Greens] or Florida last time.   They won’t even lift a finger to expose touch screen vote theft in Snohomish County.  They’re concerned with saving face and winning elections.  Democracy is the very last thing on their list of priorities.

Ralph Nader stated that he does not believe that the Democratic Party is capable of reform from within.  He said, “It took me 20 years to realize this –so take your time.”  
As one who strives to use the Democratic Party as a tool to fight for social progress, I’m the first to admit that I am not smart enough to judge whether he is right about that or not, but I know exactly what he means when he talks about the oligarchy or the “party within a party” that runs the Democratic Party.  Ralph Nader is the same Ralph Nader as he always was.  He’s not any more arrogant now that he is taking on the Democratic Party structure than he was when he took on General Motors.  I’ve been saying for a long time that we have to take back our party and the time to do it is now.  Obviously I’m not the only one who thinks this.  That’s why whenever possible I urge progressive activists to join the Democratic Party.  By this I do not mean quit the Green Party.  The Greens are perfectly capable of running for and winning local office, quite frankly, I wish they would win more.  If there is a corporatist Democrat who has been there too long, and we are unwilling or unable to get rid of them from the inside, I’m not going to loose any sleep over it if a Green takes them out.  The problem with the corporatists is that they don’t have any competition.   But it’s going to be a long time, if ever before Greens or any progressive third party will be capable of winning national office and we don’t have that kind of time.  We progressive activists are in short supply and we have to work together.

Ralph pointed out that conservatives have never done anything for this country except fight to protect their own power and privilege.  In fact there wouldn’t even be a
United States if they had gotten their way because at that time the conservatives were the Tories who sided with King George.  On every great issue of social progress in our history, from the abolition of slavery, women’s suffrage, the creation of unions, the elimination of child labor, civil rights, health care, peace, etc. etc., it was always the liberals who championed those causes and it was always the conservatives who fought them tooth and nail.  Let’s not overlook the fact that very often, in fact most often the Democratic Party was on the conservative side and if it came around, it was only because it was forced to.

I had no illusions about
John Kerry.  I would have celebrated if he had won and been out on the street protesting the war the next day just as Will Pitt suggested.  Another thing William Rivers Pitt said on this show comes to mind; he said that the old bulls don’t leave until the young bulls drive them out.  We can take over the districts, we can fight to pass all manner of progressive platform resolutions, but the big question that should be on every one of our minds is how we translate that into actual political power.  Right now the party oligarchy have isolated themselves from our will.  Us Precinct Reps. pass out the propaganda.  We or the voters are not their real constituency.  Let me give you some examples.  We have no effect even on how our own district legislators vote in Olympia.  If they want to vote to privatize our schools they will do it in open defiance of almost unanimous opposition from us and the community.  What’s worse, nobody has the courage to dress them down about it.  Virtually everybody at the convention was against the war except John Kerry and the oligarchy of corporate whores around him.  Did it make any difference?  The one person who had the temerity to raise an anti war sign was dragged away.  -Another great victory for democracy.  What surprises me is that they can convince that many people to spend their good money to fly all that way so that they can be props for the TV cameras. 

We can continue to vote for “least-worst” corporate whores for a little while longer until we all die from global warming, endless war, or starvation due to the inevitable collapse of our economy or we can fight for regime change.  In most countries this is accomplished with bullets, hopefully we can still do it with ballots but we don’t have a prayer if we are unable to take back our party.  People who have power and privilege don’t give it up easily, but revolution is what we’re talking about and absolutely necessary if we are going to survive.  This revolution is against the most powerful regime in history, it’s going to take a lot more than passing platform resolutions and handing out campaign literature for least-worse millionaire corporate whores.  At the very least it’s going to take militant action.

I understood something about Ralph Nader this time that never really dawned on me before.  He said that the only way to take our party back is to catch them when they are the most vulnerable.  He said that all those anti-war delegates at the convention should have threatened a walk-out.  They should have been lead by Sharpton or Kucinich.  At that point I realized that he is attacking the Democratic Party oligarchy in the same way that he attacked General Motors.  First he began to expose that they couldn’t care less about the lives of their customers, they weren’t about to tolerate that so instead of cleaning up their act they hired private detectives to follow him around and they pulled all kinds of dirty tricks, this only stuck them worse to the tar baby, as a last resort they tried to buy him off.  All of this ended up being exposed and General Motors in complete humiliation and embarrassment capitulated, pulling the Corvair off the market and paying a huge settlement.

By the 90s after a career of unprecedented victories in the championship of social progress in law and landmark legislation Ralph had come to the conclusion that it was pointless to go before Congress anymore.  With the takeover by Bill Clinton and the DLC, he came to the conclusion that the Democratic Party has become so compromised that it is beyond self reform.  He decides to run for President and campaign on the issues that should most concern liberals in order to expose that the Democratic Party couldn’t care less about its base constituency, and force it to the left.  They can’t tolerate that, and they don’t want to alienate their real constituency so instead of stealing his issues [what he wants], they go straight for the tar baby.  They know that Ralph Nader is dangerous because unlike them he has a reputation for being incorruptible and they can’t attack his credibility so they mount a campaign of dirty tricks to silence him by keeping him out of the debates even to the point of illegally dragging him out when he attempts to show up. They hire Republican law firms to keep him off the ballot and they vilify him personally.  Which they repeated this last election.  What does it prove?  In reality the Democrats don’t give a hoot about free speech, civil liberties or democracy.  As Ralph put it, they don’t see the right to run or vote for the candidate of your choice as a civil liberty.  The oligarchy knows that his attack is aimed directly at them.  You never see them mount campaigns like that to keep the Socialist Workers Party or any other progressive party off the ballot.  Once you understand this, it all makes sense.

It is unlikely that Ralph Nader is dumb enough to actually believe that he can become President running on a third party ticket or as an independent.  I believe his aim is to force reform, pure and simple.  The more desperate they are the more likely they are to capitulate.  He realizes the old bulls don’t leave until they are forced out and he believes it can’t be accomplished from the inside.  Where the strategy falls down is that unlike General Motors, the “two party dictatorship” as he calls it doesn’t have any competition.   They’re not worried about losing customers.  Therefore no amount of exposing or shaming is likely to make any difference.  The party leadership is more concerned with preserving the status quo than they are about winning elections.  The propaganda line is that he is doing it because he is arrogant and that he is a “spoiler”.  But the fact is that the Democrats loose magnitudes more votes by their own devices than the piddling number they lose to Nader.  The ascendancy of Howard Dean to the leadership of the DNC is a hopeful sign but we have a long battle ahead.  I’d like to see that we can prove him wrong in his opinion that the Party cannot be reformed from the inside, but I don’t discount that his powerful voice has had a tremendous effect.  I think if you stop and think about it, you will realize this.  We should appreciate him for that.

My opinion is that no matter how sincere you are about struggling for social change, if you can’t get clear on who or what the enemy is, you will always be part of the problem, not the solution.  Right now we need leaders, not suckers.  Ralph’s number one goal is that we take back our party.  He’s on our side.  If we’re smart, we’ll listen to him and use what he has to say to help guide us in our struggle.

Ed Mays
PCO 36-1293

Read about the corporate whores and warmongers who run the Democratic Party:
No More Moore: The DLC Joins the Witch-Hunt
Democrats Split Again Over Party's Agenda
Liberal Hawks: Flying in Neocon Circles

George Lakoff and Cecile Andrews- Reframing Political Discourse, Monday 1/31 8:30-9-30 PM
We seem to have lost the language war.  We lost it before many of us even realized that there was a war.  Of course, the rich have lots of money to hire PR firms and have created dozens of right-wing think tanks to dream up all kinds of ingenious ways to sell their agenda and hoodwink people into participating in their own undoing.  The wing-nuts may not let on that they believe in science, but careful research in the selection of words plays a large part in the psychology of thought control.  The Public Relations industry is the civilian branch of psychological operations and as
John Stauber of PR Watch pointed out on this show, many a CIA psy-ops specialist passed through those revolving doors.  And it doesn’t hurt to have a lock on the public mind through total control of the public’s airwaves.  In short, it cost a huge amount of money for a minority of super rich and religious/political cultists to take over this country and stay in power.  Their emperor might be a ding-a-ling but the apparatus created to maintain the illusion of cloths is the very finest propaganda machine that money has ever bought.

Under these circumstances it’s naive to assume that having the truth and righteousness on your side is enough.  We need to think carefully about how to get our message across by deconstructing the right-wing propaganda frame and altering the paradigm.  There are people who are busy at work on this.  One of them is professor of Cognitive Science and Linguistics at UC Berkeley, George Lakoff.  He is author of Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think.  Were going to watch his video, How Democrats and Progressives Can Win: Solutions from George Lakoff, and then we are going to see part of a discussion about the video from last week’s
Seattle Thunder democracy festival chaired by another pioneer in this field, local activist, author and simplicity studies educator Cecile Andrews.  She is the author of several books including, The Circle of Simplicity.  This program is a must-see for Democrats and progressive activists of all persuasions.

See Also: http://www.winwithlanguage.com/

And: http://www.rockridgeinstitute.org/

David Ray Griffin- The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions, Monday 1/24, 8:30 PM

Viewers of
Pirate Television will know that we’ve been covering the inconsistencies in the official story over 9/11 since we were the to first in the US to broadcast Canadian media critic Barrie Zwicker’s eye opening series of commentaries, The Great Deception back in April of 2002.  It was one of the most popular programs.  Noted scholar David Ray Griffin’s book, The New Pearl Harbor is considered the best chronicle of the arguments against the official story so it should be no surprise that he should take on the challenge of deconstructing the 9/11 Commission Report.  His new book is called The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions, A Critique of the Kean-Zelikow Report.  This program is a talk he delivered in California last year a couple weeks before the book came out.  Brace yourself for another shock!  Could the 9/11 Commission, the creation of which the Bush Administration fought tooth and nail for a year and a half and then packed with conflict of interest ridden insiders be a cover-up?  Naahhhh

See: http://www.interlinkbooks.com/Books_/911CommRep.html

Steve Coll: Ghost Wars, Monday 1/17, 8:30-9:30 PM

The 9/11 attack on symbols of US Military and Economic global hegemony was blow-back pure and simple.  If the US public were not so thoroughly and meticulously un and mis-informed about the secret covert wars of their own government, then when that event had happened, they wouldn’t have been running around pulling their hair out endlessly spouting the rhetorical question: “Why do they hate us?”    Instead they might have looked to the leaders they had voted for focusing on a far more meaningful and serious question: “What did you expect?”    What do you expect when the President sends the CIA to hire extreme fundamentalist Islamist reactionaries to overthrow a moderate socially progressive military government in one of the poorest countries in the world in order to suck the Soviet Union into a war for no other purpose than to turn that country into a quagmire?  [see: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/748449/posts]  This war ends up killing 2 million people and leveling the entire country after which the US packs up and pulls out leaving the opium warlords they had supported to battle amongst each other for control over the spoils which further devastates an already devastated country.   Next the US stands by while this country is again plunged into civil war when the extremist Islamists which the US had also helped train and support, appalled at the devastation and brutality in the wake of the warlords rise up to impose their own brand of fascism.  Eventually some of these Islamist extremist elements, now steeped in the ways of covert war find their way to turning on the hegemonic power that created them.  What did you expect?

For many people having had no exposure to anything other than the “official story”, this story sounds like the stuff of a bad spy movie.  But the fact is, our own government is the single party that is the most responsible for the events of 9/11 and you don’t have to believe in conspiracy theories to arrive at that conclusion.  Because, irregardless of whether or not these conspiracy theories about
US government purposeful complicity in the events of 9/11 are true, the indisputable facts say that US secret foreign policy in Afghanistan made 9/11 all but inevitable.   The United States not only created the forces which came back to attack us in the process giving them the tools and skills to do it, but also provided them with ample motivation.  This story and the irrefutable facts are the subject of Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post editor and foreign correspondent Steve Coll’s new book, Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001.  The book first came out last year and instantly became a New Your Times bestseller.  It has now been published in paperback, updated with documents from the 9/11 Commission.  Steve Coll was at Town Hall last Thursday to tell the story.  You can see it on Pirate TV.

Jim Crow and the Stolen Election of 2004,
8PM Tuesday night, Jan 4th 

Well we all saw it coming, the final nails in the coffin of democracy in the
United States.  We watched as an elite class of right wing reactionaries and big business/ military imperialists terrified at the prospect of an outbreak of democracy and civil rights in the 60’s and the large scale disillusionment of significant sectors of the population brought about by the scandals of Viet Nam and Watergate with the corresponding threat of an exodus from consumer culture and most importantly, a rejection of the cultural and political myths on which their power rested, carry forth a systematic, methodical, and aggressive campaign to maintain and reinforce that system of concentrated power, wealth disparity and thought control.  Now, 30 years hence, that campaign has succeeded beyond what must have been their wildest dreams.

It’s now official; we live in a one party state.  What’s worse, it is a party that has been taken over by extreme fanatic reactionary corporatist imperialist elitists who want to roll back all social progress of the past century.  They are supported by an army of brainwashed radical religious and political zealots who have been carefully indoctrinated to believe and do what they are told.  What’s even worse is that real institutionalized opposition has been all but eliminated.  Since the initiation of the Democratic Leadership Council, the same corporatist imperialist elitist types exercise control over the Democratic Party through its purse strings.

I would have to write a book to go into the detail of how this was accomplished.  However, it is important to understand the meaning of the 2004 election in this context because the theft in broad daylight of the second presidential election in a row could not have happened otherwise.   For instance 1, without the bipartisan supported takeover and consolidation of the main stream media and it’s transformation into a lapdog press, the theft of the last election would have been exposed and not only is it unlikely that President select George Bush would still be in office, but Republicans would not have dared to try it again.  We know that this was investigated by people like Greg Palast, but it was not exposed in the
United States for several years and never hit the echo chamber.  He also exposed the preparations for the theft of the 2004 election which was also ignored by the US corporate press.  For instance 2, if it were not for the elimination of the fairness doctrine, outfits like FOX News could not exist.  For instance 3, in the light of a vibrant investigative press, the corporate theft of the voting system and the rise of touch screen computer voting machines would never have been permitted.  These machines eliminate not only the legal ballot –the foundation on which our democracy rests, but any verifiable paper trail at all.  See: Bev Harris www.blackboxvoting.org [and .com].

But wait, you say, what makes me so sure the election was rigged to begin with?  This program will examine some of the evidence mounting daily that this is, in fact, exactly what happened.  How did they do it?  Mostly, the same way they did it last time, by suppressing the black vote.  We will take a look at a 25 minute video of footage compiled by "We Do Not Concede" (www.donotconcede.com), a nonprofit grassroots organization created to unite and mobilize citizens whose voting rights were suppressed, denied, or simply not counted.  This is actual footage of the wide spread systematic Jim Crow like vote suppression tactics suffered in African American precincts throughout the state of Ohio as it occurred.

Next, we will have a talk with Attorney
Paul Lehto who was one of 17,000 lawyers sent by the Democratic Party to try to prevent election irregularities in the precincts.  Mr. Lehto has been investigating voting irregularities and his paper on voting discrepancies in Snohomish Co. which is due out this week will be posted at: www.votersunite.org.  One of the main issues is the discrepancy between the paper ballot count in solidly Democratic Snohomish Co. which went in a landslide for Christine Gregoire and the touch screen ballots which went in a landslide for Rossi.  That is almost statistically impossible.  Mr. Lehto also presented me with a study released December 28th by two esteemed mathematicians which documents why it is that the odds are almost astronomically against the exit polls [the most accurate type of survey there is] to have predicted the election result wrong in this case.  This study gives solid evidence that Kerry not only should have won the electoral vote, but most likely won the popular vote.  See: http://www.freepress.org/departments/display/19/2004/1054

Normally I would stop here and tell you to have a happy new year, but there are some things that you can do.

First off you can call your Senators and urge them not to do what we saw last time in
Michael Moore’s film.  That is, they should challenge the certification of the Bush presidency on 1/06.  All it takes is one Senator and the whole thing comes crashing down.

Second, you can send money to donotconcede.com.  On Wednesday,
1/05/05, at 4:00 am, 30+ Contestants against the certification of the Ohio Electors will board a bus for D.C.   They will speak from their hearts on the steps of the Capitol, before visiting the offices of Senators, who, we all hope, will oppose the certification of the Bush presidency on 1/06.  Read their petition, look at the evidence: http://www.freepress.org/departments/display/19/2004/990

For a Voter Fraud kit of the horrific Voter Suppression in
Columbus on 11/02, go to www.marvista4peace.8k.com and donate.  To download the footage now, visit

Jon Lee Anderson: The Fall of
Baghdad, Sat. morning 1AM 12/18 [Friday night]

The Americans are just not cut out for imperial conquest.  They might be good at blowing things up, but they don’t have the cultural sophistication to be able to hang on to what they grab.  Unembedded New Yorker contributor, Jon Lee Anderson paints a vivid picture of how the Americans lost the war within the first few hours of the invasion.  Without trying, his eyewitness account of American ineptitude, stupidity, casual brutality, and arrogance clearly illuminates why this foolish enterprise was doomed before it even started. 
In addition to his new book- The Fall of Baghdad, Jon is the author of Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life, and The Lion’s Grave.

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Geoffrey Stone- Perilous Times, 1 AM Sat. 12/4 [Friday night]

University of Chicago law professor Geoffrey Stone takes a look a the history of US government attacks on free speech and the Bill of Rights by covering 6 incidents starting with the Alien and Sedition acts to the present.  Professor Stone was loath to point out the ominous implications of the Bush Administration’s attempt to get away with “disappearing” US citizens.  In the case of Jose Padilla, no one would have even known about it had the Justice Department not made the mistake of taking him to a jail where he was booked into the criminal justice system before transferring him to a military brig.  This raises the unsettling prospect that there may be others.   Mr. Padilla has been held incommunicado for over 3 years and has never been charged with a crime.  This frightening assertion of executive authority far outstrips any unconstitutional power-grab by any President in
US history.  “It is a Gestapo tactic, plain and simple.”  As none other than Antonin Scalia pointed out in a recent Supreme Court ruling, this is completely unconstitutional.  However, in spite of the Supreme Court’s ruling, Jose Padilla still rots in jail and if the US government had any real evidence he most certainly have been charged by now.

Professor Stone’s new book, Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime from the Sedition Act of 1798 to the War on Terrorism, is meant to document the historical fact that we cannot count on the Congress, the courts or especially the Executive branch to protect the Constitution and safeguard our civil liberties.  What it comes down to is that Justice is “just-us”.

Thanks to
Elliott Bay Books

Mark Danner &
Michael Massing, 1-3 AM Sat Morning [Friday night] 11/20

Mark and Mike, two writers for the New Yorker were in town last month with a fascinating discussion of how the Bush administration and the Republican controlled government have succeeded in massaging reality right out of existence.  It’s no longer an important factor in what passes for the national dialogue, and apparently in most people’s minds -a PR triumph for which the White House is arrogant enough to claim credit!  For instance, note how they got away with the conscious policy decision to violate all known laws of war and human decency and deliberately order the systematic use of torture on a mass scale.  Notice how they got caught red handed.  -Pictures and all!  Notice how nothing has changed.  Notice how in addition to daily war crimes, committed on a horrendous scale in Iraq and Afghanistan, prisoners, routinely tortured to death or summarily executed in US custody have become the new norm and nobody seems to notice, least of all the institutional structures that are supposed to function to enforce the law or seed the public outrage that befits a civilized nation.  Like the US Senate, the courts and the press.   And with the
US veto, there is nothing the UN or the World Court can do about it.  The transcripts are all there, of course, duly documented and filed away for anyone who cares to look [reproduced in Mark Danner’s new book] but it’s not possible for anyone other than the occasional low level grunt to be held accountable; further evidence that we may have now reached the point where no scandal, no matter how egregious can effect the stability of the regime or even policy.  That means that with the onset of unprecedented media and corporate/political consolidation, another “Watergate” with the anticipated political house-cleaning (possibly our last hope for meaningful political reform in this country) may no longer be possible until the economy, the empire, the biosphere and/or all three collapse entirely.  The noted political scientist and psychologist William Domhoff (author of Who Rules America?) once pointed out that real reform never happens until the system is on the point of collapse.  Fair enough, but under current circumstances, exactly what point is that?

Mark Danner, staff writer at The New Yorker investigates the subject in his new book Torture and Truth: Abu Ghraib and
America in IraqMichael Massing, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, and contributing editor of the Columbia Journalism Review, looks at it from the angle of media coverage in And Now They Tell Us: The American Press and Iraq, both published by The New York Review of Books.  Once again, with the help of friends, I’m showing the whole thing in two shows back to back.  If you are not a deralict who regularly stays up until 3 AM [like me], then I hope you have figured out how to set your VCR by now.  You will be relieved to know that starting in January, PirateTV moves back to 8:30 PM on Mondays.  –Ed

Thanks to Elliott Bay Books

Cornel West- Democracy Matters, Sat. 11/13, 1 -3 AM [Friday Night]

In his national bestseller RACE MATTERS, philosopher Cornel West burst onto the national scene with his searing analysis of the scars of racism in American democracy. RACE MATTERS has become a contemporary classic, and West a sought after speaker praised by the NEW YORK TIMES for "his ferocious moral vision" and hailed by NEWSWEEK as "an elegant prophet with attitude." In his new book, DEMOCRACY MATTERS: WINNING THE FIGHT AGAINST IMPERIALISM, West issues a call to action for the deepening of "true democracy" both at home and abroad, and urges us to move away from our current climate of imperial overreach and fundamentalist rage. His impassioned argument will reshape the debate about
America's role in the modern world.

Lori Wallach, Whose Trade Organization? 1 AM- 2 AM Sat 11/6 [Friday Night]

With the Republican control of the White House and consolidation in Congress, it is certain that the corporate oligarchy is chomping at the bits to push through new “trade” treaties; Next up- CAFTA, the Central American Free Trade Agreement.   This week’s show features globalization activist and trade attorney Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch.  Longtime viewers will recall that we have featured Lori 3 or 4 times before.  She was back in
Seattle again a few weeks ago with her most recent book, co-authored with Patrick Woodall, Whose Trade Organization?  A Comprehensive Guide to the WTO (New Press).  This book is a compilation of the evidence that exposes the results of the experiment in corporate globalization on our lives.  The verdict is in.  Not surprisingly, -it’s an unmitigated disaster.  But contrary to what the talking air-heads would have you believe, the current track is not inevitable.  Alternatives do exist and are not only possible, but necessary.
“A crucial guide – devastating and highly readable. Wallach and Woodall are warriors for democracy against its most powerful opponents.” – Naomi Klein. “You must read this book to get past the fraudulent clichés that distort the debate on trade policy –clichés promoted by liberals and conservatives alike.” –
John R. MacArthur.
See also: http://www.citizen.org/trade/

Daniel Ellsberg, Medea Benjamin, and Norman Solomon THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, 2004 and Beyond: What's At Stake, Thursday 10/14, 9 AM

After you have digested the debate wrap-ups with the corporate media talking [air] heads discussing the horse race and other non issues like who had the best make-up, who had the fewest gaffs and who looked the “most Presidential”, join us for what promises to be an extraordinary example of what a real television debate wrap-up discussion would look like in a real democracy with a media system that really acted in the public interest.  Daniel Ellsberg, Medea Benjamin, and Norman Solomon are coming to town this week.  Thursday night they are going to be at PLU Schneebeck Concert Hall to watch the first presidential debate and afterwards hold a panel discussion where they will discuss the real issues.  I have made arrangements to videotape this after which I’m going to stay up late into the night to make a show which I will turn in for broadcast the next day.  It’s as close to real time coverage that Public Access gets.  I’ve been promised that the program will be rebroadcast later the next week, but I’m not sure when.  Also, if you can get in, they will be at University Temple United Methodist Church in Seattle, Friday at 7 PM.  Get there early, it’s going to be packed.

For those who don’t know: Daniel Ellsberg is the legendary top-level analyst who changed the course of American history by leaking the Pentagon Papers, exposing the secret history of the war in Southeast Asia, and author of Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam;  Medea Benjamin is a powerful and charismatic force for human rights, the founding director of Global Exchange and co-founder of Code Pink: Women for Peace;  and Norman Solomon is the Co/founder of the media watch group FAIR- Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, a nationally syndicated columnist and co-author of Target Iraq: What the News Media Didn't Tell You.

Steven Watt- TORTURE AND DETENTION - International Law & the US Response. Sat. morning September 18th, 1AM

Attorney Steven Watt works for the Center for Constitutional rights which is a little known but vitally important organization at this time.  Mr. Watt works on cases
involving illegal detention of immigrants by the INS and the detention of US and non-US citizens as "enemy combatants" in the US and Guantanamo.  The center won a recent landmark Supreme Court ruling which found that contrary to the Bush Administration, US prisoners in Guantanamo do in fact have legal rights under international and US law.  Be sure not to miss this rare opportunity to hear a key human rights fighter on the forefront of the battle to save the Bill of Rights and the Geneva Conventions.

The program was recorded 9/17 at Trinity United Methodist Church in Seattle.