Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Video Underground schedules November series

Schedule for Video Underground

November 11: Ghosts of Abu Ghraib

November 25: The Corporation

December 9: Who Shot My Brother? (about Colombia)

December 23: Joyeux Noel (the WWI battlefield Christmas truce among French, German, and British troops)

Newsletter on nuclear weapons

From: Omnicenter Communications ( on behalf of Dick Bennett (
Sent:Wed 10/31/07 9:18 AM
Reply-to:Dick Bennett (

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OMNI NEWSLETTER: 2nd SPECIAL NUMBER ON NUCLEAR WAR GENOCIDE , OCTOBER 31, 2007, OMNI Building a Culture of PEACE, Seeking Truth and Taking Action

Dick Bennett, Editor for Special Issues


NUCLEAR WAR (first Nuclear GENOCIDE Newsletter June 14, 2007)
We cannot refer to nuclear bombs as weapons, as though their destructiveness is only one of degree with conventional bombs. A one megaton nuclear bomb is about 50 times more powerful than the bomb that produced more than 100,000 deaths in Hiroshima. A one megaton bomb would vaporize 6,000,000 New Yorkers if dropped over Times Square. It’s a genocide bomb. But these realities should not cause despair. We can ban these bombs. We have the intelligence and the knowledge. We only lack the will. What could cause us to feel despair is the silence of the public. Let each of us be leaders to end this danger. Let each of us give up one meaningless activity in our life, and focus that energy on changing our country’s nuclear derangement .

UN CHARTER (a Treaty initiated by US and signed into US law)
Article 2(4): All members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.


FROM THE NUCLEAR AGE PEACE FOUNDATION Below is an overview of an important new feature on the Foundation’s website (, which provides information on the views of US Presidential candidates on issues of US nuclear policy. I hope that you will use this resource and let your friends know about it. US nuclear policy should be one of the most important issues, if not THE most important issue, in this campaign. US voters should not let another election go by without thoroughly understanding the positions of candidates on this critical issue for our common future.
David Krieger President Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
PMB 121, 1187 Coast Village Road, Suite 1, Santa Barbara, CA 93108
Click here to add your voice to a growing movement for peace and a nuclear weapons-free world

US Presidential Candidates
Positions on US Nuclear Weapons Policy
One of the most important issues of the 2008 US Presidential election is US nuclear weapons policy. We believe it should be a priority issue when Americans go to the voting booth next year in primary and general elections. It's not our purpose to suggest how people should vote, but rather to educate and inform the public on where candidates stand.

To this end, the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation is pleased to announce the latest addition to our website. We feature key quotes made by the major Republican and Democratic candidates on five issues relating to US nuclear weapons policy:

? Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty

? Disarmament

? Missile Defense

? New Nuclear Weapons / Reliable Replacement Warhead

? Use of Nuclear Weapons

Click here to view the Presidential Candidate quotes page.

Additionally, Foundation President David Krieger sent all candidates a survey asking their positions on several important points. Results of the survey are coming in. Click here to read what we have received so far.

These pages will be updated often over the next 13 months as nuclear weapons issues continue to gain prominence in the presidential campaign. Please check in with us frequently at to see what else the candidates are saying.
We encourage you to forward this message to at least 5 friends so they too can discover where the candidates stand on an issue that affects each of us so deeply.
If you know of a quote that does not appear in our report that you think should be included, please contact us.

Read what the candidates have to say about US nuclear
weapons policy

Nuclear Weapons: Candidates Debate Nuclear Policy
The Democratic candidates for president clashed over whether or not they would use nuclear weapons against other countries in last Sunday’s Democratic Party debate. Read what the candidates had to say. FCNL is currently compiling the major candidates’ statements on the issues of Iraq, Iran, and nuclear weapons.

Debates on nuclear weapons ignore one critical point: they must never be used again!

Hello Dick,
As the presidential candidates strive to stake out their positions on national security, one thing must be crystal clear: The willingness to use nuclear weapons is not a measure of toughness or pragmatism; it’s immoral and reckless.
Tell the 2008 presidential candidates we need a plan for a nuclear weapon-free world >>
Using or threatening to use such weapons would only erode our security, not enhance it.
Debates between the candidates about when and under what circumstances they would consider using nuclear weapons ignore the critical reality of the twenty-first century: Nuclear weapons must never be used again.
We need a President who will make a nuclear weapon-free world a top priority of the next administration. Sign today >>
Thank you for your help in making peace and security a priority!
Breeana L.
Care2 Campaign Team

P.S. If you cannot see the links in this message, please go to:

Thank you for signing up to receive Action Alerts via ThePetitionSite or Care2 website. Your email address has not been bought from other sources. If you learned something interesting from this newsletter, please forward it to your friends, family and colleagues., Inc. 275 Shoreline Drive, Suite 150 Redwood City, CA 94065


James Risen, State of War. Free Press, 2006. See The Guardian Jan. 5, 2006 for extract on CIA giving Iran bomb plans.


Below is a link for a short film by Foundation member Mary Becker on the News and Politics page of YouTube. The film, which won first prize at the 2006 Cannes online competition, provides a short history of the Nuclear Age and is well worth viewing. Mary would love to see interested people add informed comments to the conversation on YouTube about the film.

David Krieger President, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

PMB 121, 1187 Coast Village Road, Suite 1 Santa Barbara, CA 93108


“Is Iran the Real Nuclear Threat?” Marquette Univ., Milwaukee.

I have no idea if you have given this any thought but it is a serious concern of mine.
Ever since dropping a nuclear weapon on Japan this weapon has been put away in the arsenal of many countries including many of our allies. To date these weapons have been used as a deterrent to aggressor nations who realize that we could easily wipe out any nation that attacked us. This defensive strategy was what kept us free from wars against our homeland.

G.W. Bush's switch to a offensive as a defense has surely made our allies as well as our enemies look toward us and wonder just what this country is doing. They could easily get the idea that our government is looking for world domination rather than peace. If these allies start siding with Russia, China, and India, we could see those countries build a war machine capable of overwhelming power to initiate a nuclear strike against us because they fear that we are preparing to move from the Middle East into their countries.

We could find ourselves being attacked with no alternative than to send every nuclear missile we have into the middle of Europe and the Far East.

George Bush would then feel complete because he would believe that Armageddon has arrived and he will be taken into heaven to spend eternity with Jesus Christ.

No, I am not crazy.... I am putting a huge puzzle together and I do not like what I see for this planet.

I feel like a lucky one... I have lived a long life and never had to live in a war torn country. I believe this could happen right here in the Good ole USA unless someone quickly finds a way to get Bush back to his Ranch with only animals to care for.

I was very happy to hear John Edwards speech today whereby he talked about the fact that this country Is NOT SAFER TODAY than 6 Years ago. This is 180 degrees form Hillary Clinton's claim that we are Safer today.

Did We Miss the Lesson of Nagasaki?
Date: Tue, 14 Aug 2007 >Did We Miss the Lesson of Nagasaki? >By William D. Hartung
>Mr. Hartung is the director of the Arms and Security
>Initiative at the New America Foundation. He writes
>frequently on nuclear non-proliferation and U.S.
>nuclear policy.
>It has been 62 years since the atomic bombings of
>Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but the moral and strategic
>lessons of those devastating acts have still not been
>fully learned.
>Despite the efforts of scientists like Leo Szilard and
>diplomats like John McCloy to promote alternative means
>for ending the war, the bombings went forward. There
>are still debates among historians and the public at
>large about the primary rationale for the use of the
>weapons. Some interpretations accept the official claim
>that it was done as a way of ending the war as soon as
>possible, on allied terms. Others note that the
>intention of the Roosevelt administration had always
>been to use the atom bomb once it had been developed,
>and that in this sense President Truman inherited a
>policy that already had considerable momentum behind
>it. Other historians suggest that the bombings were
>aimed at preventing the Soviet Union from entering the
>war in the Pacific theater.
>It is possible that all of these factors were at work
>to some degree, and they may constitute an explanation
>- though not a moral justification - for the attack on
>Hiroshima. But even if one accepts the rationales put
>forward for the Hiroshima bombing, the use of a second
>atomic weapon against Nagasaki just three days later
>seems like an act of gratuitous cruelty on a monumental
>We now know that Japanese leaders were still reeling
>from the impact of the first bombing when the second
>bomb struck. Debates over terms of surrender were
>deadlocked, but a few more days' time - especially in
>light of the Soviet Union's imminent entry into the war
>- may well have produced an agreement acceptable to the
>United States without the need to destroy Nagasaki. In
>addition, the sheer destructive power of the Hiroshima
>bombing -- killing tens of thousands of people
>immediately while turning the city into a pile of
>radioactive rubble -- should have raised qualms about
>launching another strike in such short order.
>The Nagasaki bombing went forward in any case and
>subsequent efforts to curb the use of atomic energy for
>military purposes failed. President Truman apparently
>believed that the U.S. nuclear monopoly would last
>indefinitely, telling Robert Oppenheimer that he
>believed that the Soviets would "never" get the bomb.
>Just a few years later he was proven wrong, and the
>nuclear arms race was off and running. With so many
>factors at play, it is by no means certain that U.S.
>forbearance over Nagasaki would have changed this
>tragic outcome, but it might have at least opened the
>door to other possibilities.
>Six decades later the United States remains the only
>nation to have used nuclear arms as a weapon of war.
>The absence of additional attacks has been driven in
>part by the moral opprobrium attached to the use of
>these weapons of mass terror, and in part by the fear
>of devastating retaliation by another nuclear power --
>particularly on the U.S.-Soviet front. But despite this
>record, the foundations of U.S. nuclear policy remain
>morally suspect. There has not been another Nagasaki,
>but it is U.S. policy to engage in veiled threats to
>launch just such an attack, even if the target nation
>does not possess nuclear weapons.
>The immorality of U.S. declaratory nuclear policy was
>made evident recently when Barack Obama asserted that
>"it would be a profound mistake to use nuclear weapons
>under any circumstance . . . involving civilians." This
>seemingly common sense statement was roundly criticized
>by rival presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and
>Christopher Dodd, who essentially argued that the
>nuclear option should never publicly be "taken off the
>Not only is the prospect of using nuclear weapons in
>circumstances in which civilians will be killed
>immoral, but the threat of doing so violates
>international law, as expressed in an historic 1995
>advisory opinion by the World Court.
>This policy is also counterproductive at the strategic
>level. The threat to use nuclear weapons against non-
>nuclear states is only liable to spur them to seek
>their own. Taking this stance toward Iran -- even if
>the actual use of the weapons is extremely unlikely --
>will undermine prospects for negotiations to curb
>Teheran's program while giving leverage to officials
>within Iran who want to go from nuclear enrichment to
>nuclear weapons.
>Short of getting a global agreement to abolish nuclear
>weapons -- a goal worth striving for no matter how
>difficult it may be to achieve in practice -- one of
>the most important steps the U.S. could take would be
>to adopt a policy of "no first use" of nuclear weapons
>against any nation that is not literally poised to
>launch a nuclear attack on the United States. This
>shift in U.S. policy would suggest that it is possible
>to reverse the mentality that led to the bombing of
>Nagasaki, even at this late date.

Nuclears weapons must never be used again !
Hello Dick,
We each have a responsibility to our children, grandchildren and future generations to end the threat that nuclear weapons pose. And, to carry out this responsibility, we need a leader who agrees nuclear weapons must never be used again!

We need a President who will make a nuclear weapon-free world a top priority of the next administration.

Keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of those who would use them, whether terrorist groups or governments, and working to eliminate the world’s nuclear arsenals are not challenges we can afford to put off.

The next presidential candidate should have a strong plan to:

Stop the development and production of new nuclear weapons around the world.
Lock up and safeguard bomb-making materials.
Promote peaceful, non-nuclear resolutions to the nuclear crises in North Korea and Iran.
This issue must be put on the forefront to make sure nuclear weapons are never used again. Tell the 2008 presidential candidates we need a plan for a nuclear weapon-free world >>

Thank you for your help in making peace and security a priority!
Breeana L.
Care2 Campaign Team

P.S. If you cannot see the links in this message, please go to:

Thank you for signing up to receive Action Alerts via ThePetitionSite or Care2 website. Your email address has not been bought from other sources. If you learned something interesting from this newsletter, please forward it to your friends, family and colleagues., Inc. 275 Shoreline Drive, Suite 150 Redwood City, CA 94065

Success: Congress Stops New Bomb Plant
Four separate committees in two chambers of Congress have now zeroed out funding for the Bush administration's proposal to build a new nuclear weapons facility to be located in one of six states. FCNL worked with people like you around the country to oppose this new facility. But the administration remains committed to its plan to develop and build new nuclear weapons. Read more.


Council for a Livable World (DC)

Global Network Against Weapons in Space (Maine) Bruce Gagnon’s org.

Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action (Poulsbo, WA)(year around year after year protests against the Trident submarines)

Nevada Desert Experience (Las Vegas), annual protest

Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) (Takoma Park, MD)

The Nuclear Resister

Magazine, keeps up with political prisoners also

Nukewatch (Wisconsin), edited for many years by a noble couple

Nukewatch Quarterly

I am on the mailing list of all except CLW. We need more people in NWA to connect with these indispensable groups, to help them struggle against nuclear holocaust and to raise awareness and resistance here.

AFSC’s work in North Korea: Read and listen to an interview with Randy Ireson who recently completed 9 years as the development assistance coordinator of AFSC’s North Korea program.

NDE Newsletter, Divine Strake Hearing, & more

August Desert Witness at Los Alamos
August 3-4

NDE will join Pax Christi New Mexico to vigil, pray and Witness For Peace in Los Alamos, New Mexico on the 62nd Anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, Japan.

~ Friday, August 3rd ~
Santa Fe, New Mexico

Taking a Stand for Peace
Catholic Mass at Santa Maria de la Paz Church, 4:00 p.m. evening with Fr. Roy Bourgeois, founder of School of the Americas Watch,
7:30 p.m. at El Museo Cultural

~ Saturday, August 4th ~
Nonviolence Training will be offered in Santa Fe
Santa Maria de la Paz Church, 9:00 a.m. - noon.

Walk, Pray & Vigil For Peace at Los Alamos, 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Download the PDF flyer
Visit the Pax Christi New Mexico website for more information

Reliable Replacement Warhead Funding

Congress is now deciding whether to fund the Reliable Replacement Warhead or not. This would arguably be a re-launch the U.S. Nuclear Weapons program, creating 125 new nuclear weapons a year. The House has cut funding in the spending bill for this, but the U.S. Senate has yet to create a bill in Energy and Water Appropriations that will cut all spending for new nuclear weapons. Speak out and ask your senators to create and support such a bill. Below are links to two organizations that have online campaigns for contacting your senators:

True Majority / Peace Action

Fort Huachuca Torture Protest Trial Update

Fr. Louis Vitale, OFM, NDE co-founder, is currently awaiting trial
for nonviolent prayer protest action at Fort Huachuca denouncing torture training and the Military Commisions Act of 2006.
Read the latest update

NDE's Desert Voices July 2007 Newsletter
Now Available Online in Color

“We Won’t be Fooled” April 1st rally at NTS Raises Diverse Voices for Peace
Sacred Peace Walk Reflections
Divine Strake Called Off - Where are We Now?
Spring Events: Poetry and Photos

Click to view the July 2007 issue of Desert Voices (804kb PDF)
(Right-click and choose Save Target/Link As... to save the newsletter on your computer)
Click to Download Acrobat Reader

NDE T-shirts
Now available online

Click to get your T-shirt

Jesse Manibusan's
Walking the Ways of Peace CD

Click to get your CD Now

Intern for NDE
Berkeley Internships Available

Upcoming Event

Hiroshima & Nagasaki Commemoration
August 3-4
with Pax Christi New Mexico
Los Alamos, New Mexico

NDE relies upon donations to continue its work. Your generous support is appreciated.

Nevada Desert Experience
1420 W. Barlett Avenue
Las Vegas, Nevada 89106
(702) 646-4814

If you would prefer not to receive email communications from Nevada Desert Experience, just drop us a note and let us know.


--Senator Blanche Lincoln: Web Site (they have contact links):;;

Washington Office: 355 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, D.C. 20510-0404

Phone: (202) 224-4843 Fax: (202) 228-1371.

Fayetteville office: 251-1380. Lincoln’s staff is better informed than Boozman’s (see below), but obviously (her vote to join Bush in appropriating $95 billion more to keep the occupation going) they need a lot of education. (Send Dick, Melanie, Gladys, Kelly and Donna corrections and additions.)

Northwestern Regional Office
4 South College Avenue, Suite 205,
Fayetteville, AR 72701 (479) 251-1224; FAX (479) 251-1410
Community Affairs Specialist: John Hicks
State Central Office
912 West Fourth Street
Little Rock, AR 72201
TEL: (501) 375-2993
FAX: (501) 375-7064

--Senator Mark Pryor: Web Site (see contact link): ; Pryor has no office in NWA, so call or write him and his staff in DC: Washington Office: 217 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C. 20510-0403. Phone: (202) 224-2353 Fax: (202) 228-0908

Main District Office: 500 Pres. Clinton Ave., Suite 401, Little Rock, AR 72201.

Phone: (501) 324-6336 Fax: (501) 324-5320.

(Send Dick up to date details.)

--Congressman John Boozman, District 3, 12 counties from Benton to Washington

Lowell office: 479-725-0400. 213 W. Monroe, Suite K, 72745. ASK BOOZMAN WHO ON HIS STAFF IS KNOWLEDGEABLE ABOUT NUCLEAR WEAPONS. Boozman's new office in Lowell is located at 213 West Monroe in Lowell between I 540 and Business 71. Go there, talk to Boozman’s staff members. They are all polite young people, but now, made blind and deaf by the US Corporate/War complex, they need your peaceful explanation of reality and values. To reach that office take Exit 78 off I - 540 and go east. You will be on Hwy 264 which is also West Monroe. The office is in the Puppy Creek Plaza, past the McDonald's on the right. His suite is in the back of the complex to the left. Or write or call. Ms. McClure is Assistant Chief of Staff for the Lowell office, Ms. Breazeal focuses on gangs, and Ms. Stacy Davis is constituent staff member.

Ft. Smith office: 479-782-7787; 30 South 6th St. Rm 240, Ft. Smith 72901.

Harrison office: 870-741-6900; 402 N. Walnut, Suite 210, Harrison 72601.

DC address: 1708 Longworth House Office Bldng., Washington, DC 20515; 202-225-4301. Leslie Parker, appointments secretary: 202-225-4301. (Or she was, let me know if it’s now someone else.)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Majority in Arkansas acknowledge global warming

From: Dick Bennett

Scroll down to Warming; Good news: 57 percent acknowledge warming. But we have 43% to educate, if we are to overcome corporate grip on the legislature.

2007 Arkansas Poll: From Presidential Preferences to Global Warming
Janine Parry, associate professor, political science, University of Arkansas

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — In the lead-up to the 2008 elections, the 2007 Arkansas Poll reveals Arkansans' presidential preferences and sense of candidate electability. The poll also offers researchers and policymakers a snapshot of major concerns and attitudes toward social issues and global warming.
"While this year's Arkansas Poll shows approval ratings for state politicians remaining stable, President Bush's approval rating has declined to 30 percent, in line with national ratings but noteworthy for a state that cast its electoral votes for Bush in 2004," said Janine Parry, a University of Arkansas political scientist and director of the Arkansas Poll.
As primaries approach, the poll asked Arkansans this pre-election question: "If the presidential election were held today, who would you vote for for president?" In answer to this open-ended question, 35 percent of respondents named Hillary Clinton. The next most frequently named candidates were Rudy Giuliani and Mike Huckabee at 8 percent each. More than one quarter of respondents hadn't yet decided who would get their vote.
The poll also asked respondents what they thought the chances were that certain candidates would be nominated or elected. Democratic voters were asked about Clinton, Barak Obama, John Edwards and Bill Richardson. When it comes to gaining the party's nomination, 93 percent agreed or strongly agreed that Clinton could be nominated, well above the 49 percent who agreed or strongly agreed that Obama could win the nomination. At the same time, 79 percent of Democratic Arkansans agreed or strongly agreed that Clinton could actually win the election, again well above Obama's 41 percent. Edwards' electability came in at 37 percent and Richardson's at 13 percent.
Republicans were asked the same questions about Giuliani, Huckabee, Fred Thompson, John McCain and Mitt Romney. Here the chances were much more closely grouped, with 56 percent agreeing or strongly agreeing that Giuliani could be elected, followed by Thompson at 45 percent, Huckabee at 44 percent, McCain at 32 percent and Romney at 28 percent.
"We've heard reports for months now that Republican voters aren't wildly enthusiastic about a particular candidate," Parry said. "It appears to be the case in Arkansas, too, that - for the first time in recent memory - the Republican base is fractured and uncertain, while Democrats have a clear favorite."
Social Issues
Poll results showed stability in attitudes toward the hot button social issue of abortion. Questions about gay and lesbian relationships focused on policy issues related to adoption and foster parenting rather than on personal preferences. This year's results revealed a small majority - 53 percent - in support of prohibiting adoption and foster parenting by gays and lesbians, up only slightly from 2006, though the question was restructured for greater clarity.
Previous research on controversial social issues suggests that personal feelings about an issue are sometimes different from policy preferences. Although other polls most often ask questions about social issues in terms of personal feelings, Parry said that the Arkansas Poll's focus on policy preferences offers a clearer picture to lawmakers.
"In other words," Parry explained, "just because we don't like something doesn't mean we want to outlaw it. My sense, having tinkered with these questions for a few years now, is that while most people may not desire this for their own families, many Arkansans - both liberals and conservatives - are still uncomfortable dictating the family arrangements of others."\
Global Warming
On the question of whether global warming is happening, 57 percent of Arkansans are mostly or completely convinced that we are experiencing global warming. In answer to another question, 44 percent judge it an urgent problem requiring immediate attention, and 44 percent see it as a longer term problem.
This year, pollsters also asked what the state's global warming policies should be relative to other states. While 47 percent stated that Arkansas should adopt policies that have proved effective in other states, 27 percent of respondents thought that Arkansas "should be on the leading edge of creating policies to combat global warming."
Cindy Sagers, an associate professor of biological sciences at the University of Arkansas and member of the state Global Warming Commission, was impressed by the level of understanding reflected in the poll results.
"Nearly 90 percent of the respondents thought global warming is a problem, and that is really impressive. The 44 percent who believe global warming is a long-term problem may be really savvy readers," Sagers said. "Scientists have a sense that global warming won't be linear, and the poll results suggest that people recognize we need to do something now for the longer term."
Most Important Problem
In response to an open-ended question - "What do you think is the most important problem or issue facing people in Arkansas today?" -- Arkansans named the economy. In odd-numbered years, this question is open-ended; in even-numbered years the poll asks respondents to choose from the most frequently mentioned issues in the previous year.
"The economy, a broad category which includes jobs, wages and economic development, is very important - 29 percent named it the most important problem facing Arkansas," Parry said. "It's always among the top issues mentioned, along with education and health care. When we offer respondents options to choose from, health care often comes up first, as it did in the 2006 poll."
The Arkansas Poll was conducted in October by the Survey Research Center at the University of Arkansas and yielded 754 completed surveys from a random sample of adult Arkansans. The margin of error in the poll is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points. The Arkansas Poll has been conducted annually since 1999, with a total of nearly 7,000 Arkansans having participated.
"Over the past 9 years, these thousands of interviewees have helped us accumulate information that guides researchers and policymakers to better serve the people of Arkansas," Parry said.
The 2007 Arkansas Poll is sponsored by the Diane D. Blair Center of Southern Politics and Society in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences. The poll was designed and analyzed by political scientists Janine Parry and Bill Schreckhise. Results of previous polls from the years 1999 through 2006 can be accessed online at

Janine Parry, associate professor, political science
J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences
(479) 575-6439 or (479) 571-2973,

Cindy Sagers, associate professor, biological sciences
J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences
(479) 575-7195,

Barbara Jaquish, science and research communications officer
University Relations
(479) 575-2683,

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Planning continues for peaceful march in Little Rock

Peaceful Demonstration Against the Iraq War
Saturday, October 27 Place: Little Rock- Chenal Parkway and Bowman Rd intersection

In solidarity with 11 other massive demonstrations in cities across the U.S., please join us for an action here in Little Rock sponsored by ACPJ- the Arkansas Coalition for Peace and Justice. We will meet at the intersection of Chenal Parkway and Bowman Road from 12:00 to 1:00pm. Please come for as long as you can and bring signs that express how you feel. There is strength in numbers. Say no to the war in Iraq!

For more information, call John Coffin at 952-8181 or go to our website

Here is the ACPJ Press Release for this event:

Protesters Say: Out of Iraq Now!
Citizens united against the war in Iraq will be demonstrating on Saturday, October 27, in Little Rock at the intersection of Chenal Parkway and Bowman Road, from 12 noon until 1 pm. The event is being organized by the Arkansas Coalition for Peace and Justice. The peaceful demonstration will be in solidarity with protests being held across the country on that date, ACPJ organizer John Coffin reported.

"We want to remind our elected officials, and especially Senators Lincoln and Pryor, that 68 percent of Americans are against the war in Iraq, and want to see an end to it quickly," he added. "That was the message from the November, 2006 elections, and the sense of urgency about establishing a time-table for the withdrawal of American troops is as real now as it was then. Unfortunately, political skirmishing in the nation’s capital has kept our country from being true to this electoral mandate. That has got to change, especially now since the drums of war about Iran are being heard louder and clearer. It is almost too sad to say, but why would we believe and trust the same leaders who created this mess in Iraq, who were so profoundly mistaken about the reasons to go to war, to be telling us what to do in Iran?"

Coffin went on to say that the war in Iraq is costing too much in terms of American and Iraqi lives. "The human cost is unacceptable. Tens of thousands of soldiers and non-combatants have been killed or wounded, including over 55 from our own state. We all support our troops and the sacrifices they are making, but our support means to say loud and clear: bring them home now! Give us a real plan for withdrawal. Give these families, where the absence of a father or mother or loved one is felt every day, an honest break."

The financial burdens of the war, costing American taxpayers over $9,500,000,000 per month, or $320,000,000 every single day, are excessive. U.S. taxpayers have every right to say that these funds would be better spent on other priorities, he recounted, such as children’s health care, bridge repair and airline safety. "There is another way to solve these apparently intractable differences between our countries, and the American way is to find non-violent means to do so," Coffin added. "This administration needs to work harder and more fervently to find such a path in resolving these differences. We believe it can be done!"

The ACPJ is a central-Arkansas volunteer association of individuals and organizations who support a vision of harmony with the earth and all people through education, dialogue and direct action. It has three areas of focus: peace and non-violence, social justice and ecology. More information is available at their web site –, or by calling 952- 8181 in Little Rock.

The following is an excerpt from the website:

This coming Saturday, October 27, people from all walks of life will gather in 11 cities around the country in a national expression of the breadth and depth of antiwar sentiment in this nation. For many people, it will be their first step in transforming their antiwar feelings into antiwar action. Regional actions will enable much larger numbers of people to participate.

Watch a video by Robert Greenwald and Brave New Films, made in support of the October 27 mobilization.

People everywhere want the war to end, but Washington has failed to take decisive action. With each passing month, the Iraq disaster claims the lives of nearly 100 service people and countless Iraqis as it drains 12 billion of our tax-dollars. Our communities are neglected and suffer the consequences.

Join the October 27 National Mobilization to End the Iraq War, initiated by United for Peace and Justice.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A sample list of environmental blogs

The first link shows other significant environmental lists that allow discussion of ideas of concern worldwide:

These are a couple of local environmentally oriented blogspots:

Protests in Washington emphasize relationship of the evils of warming and war

No War, No Warming Campaign Stages Civil Disobediance on Capitol Hill. By Michael E. Ruane, The Washington Post, October 23, 2007. "Trish Comstock, 77, and Jane Califf, 67, sat side by side on the sidewalk outside the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill yesterday, their hands cuffed behind them with plastic wrist ties. They were among 59 people arrested by Capitol police yesterday during antiwar and global warming protests that temporarily blocked the entrances to the office building and disrupted morning traffic for about an hour on Independence Avenue just south of the Capitol. But they stood out among the 200 or so mostly youthful demonstrators who swirled in and around the office building on foot or on bicycles, some locking arms in the middle of Independence to impede traffic. Both women said they hail from Bloomfield, N.J. Comstock said she was a retired college writing teacher and Califf, a retired education professor. 'I have a granddaughter,' Comstock said as she sat waiting to be taken to a police van. 'And I don't want her coming into a world like this. It's just very painful for me.' Califf said: 'I'm very frightened about the climate crises that we're facing. I think we have to get away from fossil fuels and gas and oil and to clean energy... I stopped teaching because what's the point of having perfect lesson plans... and you have no world to teach in.' Yesterday's protest was the latest of four rallies in the District since Friday aimed at an array of issues that included government immigration policy, international economic policy, the war in Iraq and climate change. They coincided with meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund... Comstock, Califf and about 20 others blocked an entrance to the building at First and C streets SE. Police warned them via a bullhorn to move and then began handcuffing those who didn't. 'No war! No warming!' yelled Joshua Trost, 33, of Wauconda, Ill., as he was handcuffed and brought from the entrance by police." For information about the No War, No Warming actions of October 21-23 go to Editor's Note: Jane Califf is currently arranging for donations raised at her retirement reception, on October 29th, to go to the Climate Crisis Coalition. Her husband, Ted Glick, a cofounder of CCC who has been fasting since September 4 to call attention to the climate crisis and the urgent need for legislative action on Capitol Hill, was also arrested on Monday. Their son Daniel Califf-Glick works on the CCC website. CCC is most grateful to the Califf-Glick family for all that they are doing! Donations to CCC can be made here.

Robert McAfee
Climate Change Messenger
2610 W Hackett Rd, Hackett, AR 72937
[479]638-0035 [479]462-8834
Answering the Call --
Program based on Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth

The truth about the climate crisis is an inconvenient one that means we are going to have to change the way we live our lives. Al Gore

. . . unless we advance beyond thinking only in terms of conservation and alternate sources and begin to think in terms of a carbon pie, we will have no chance to stop the rise in atmospheric CO2. Wallace S. Broecker

Step It Up

Monday, October 22, 2007

Saturday activity at World Peace Wetland Prairie targets holiday wreaths

Please click on photo to enlarge

WPWP is at 1121 South Duncan Avenue in Fayetteville between 6th and 15th streets. Take S. Duncan Avenue or S. Van Buren Avenue north from Fifteenth Street or South Hill Avenue south from Sixth Street at Brenda's Bigger Burger.

Free fun for all members of the family.


Dick Bennett's recommended reading on fear in America

OMNI SPECIAL NEWSLETTER ON FEAR, October 22, 2007, compiled by Dick Bennett

OMNI’s devotion to a CULTURE OF PEACE has sought to empower people against the many forces of fear that are employed to manipulate and control us.
For analysis of the Cheney-Bush Admin.’s exploitation of fear, go directly to Wolf’s essay.


"We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven into an age of unreason if we dig deep into our history and remember we are not descended from fearful men."
- Edward R. Murrow

They have presented us with their sinister box gift-wrapped in a thobe and ghutra tied in a bow with a chapan and pakol. And when the package loses its luster, they light the ribbon-fuse and toss the sparkling box into the air for all to see and remember and shudder. Such a lovely parcel, this box of fear; carefully packaged and marketed with shiny toys of death inside and extra coupons on the back to order more. Don't be the only kid on the block without one.

When did America change from "the land of the free" to the land of fear?

When did we become a nation afraid of tubes of toothpaste and shampoo and water bottles? Who taught us to fear brown people in all their shades? What is it that makes us fear and despise oral sex more than torture? How is it that a nation founded on revolution and free speech now cowers in "free speech zones" and trembles at every utterance of its citizens? How in the heck did we come to dread the truth from 12-year-old children?

We were a nation inspired by thought and words. Patrick Henry, "Give me liberty or give me death." Dr. King, "I have a dream." The hymns of the heart like, "We Shall Overcome." Suddenly we say "Give me less liberty so I don't worry about death." Standing on the mountaintop, we exclaim, "I have no dream." Overwhelmed by paranoia and despair, we lament, "We cannot overcome."

In the film, "Seven Days in May," a revolution is underway to overthrow the president of the United States. Behind it are members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, led by Gen. James Mattoon Scott. When fingers are pointed and the presidential adviser says it is time to face the enemy, President Jordan Lyman responds, "He's not the enemy. Scott, the Joint Chiefs, even the emotional, very illogical lunatic fringe: They're not the enemy. The enemy's an age - a nuclear age. It happens to have killed man's faith in his ability to influence what happens to him. And out of this comes a sickness, and out of sickness a frustration, a feeling of impotence, helplessness, weakness. And from this, this desperation, we look for a champion in red, white, and blue. Every now and then a man on a white horse rides by, and we appoint him to be our personal god for the duration. For some men it was a Senator McCarthy, for others it was a General Walker, and now it's a General Scott."
There have always been those who capitalize on our fears for their own power-starved greed; who gave us Manzanar, and "restricted" clubs and hotels, the Red-baiting scare and blacklists; those willing to violate the sanctity of freedom by spying on their own citizens while loudly proclaiming the need for "the right kind" of thought and expression to save the cherished American dream - who count lapel pins as patriotism.
How long ago did we lose the ability to meet and greet our friends and loved ones at the arrival gate in the airport? Do you remember? And no, it was long before 9/11.
And that, my friend, is the seditious subtlety of the politics of fear. It is never sudden, but creeps slowly into the mainstream. Small steps and small fears that acclimate us to the need for protection - from what or whom doesn't matter. It is enough to be afraid and sit quietly in the dark and wait for "them" to identify the danger and offer their warped protection.
America has always been more myth than reality, but it was that magical mix of fiction and fact that made the dream of America larger than life. We were a cross between Paul Bunyan and Paul Revere, and that was our charm. Tall tales and brash "can-do" Americanism lifted us on the swells of rising dreams all around the world.
The greatness of America was never its armies or corporate empires - it was its citizens, the everyday John Doe on the street. It was and should always be "we the people."

Immigrants came to America to be part of "we the people." They came to work, no matter how menial; it was all just a stepping-stone to the new frontier of being American. They believed in the myth and the magic despite the posted signs, "Irish need not apply" or drinking fountains labeled "Whites Only." America was Little Italy, Chinatown, Harlem and Little Saigon.

Now we have become a nation besieged by desperation. Politicians running for office sneer at us, holding themselves up as "leaders" rather than "representatives" of we the people. Demographics and demagoguery pass for political discussion, and the rubber stamp echoes through the halls of Congress. One party clutches frantically to power, while the other is smug in the knowledge that we the people want change so badly we'll probably vote for anyone but the current regime. They do not fight or stand, but choose to nod weakly while democracy passes by.

In the play "Inherit the Wind," an allegory for the McCarthy Era, Henry Drummond speaks about wicked laws and fanaticism: "I say that you cannot administer a wicked law impartially. You can only destroy, you can only punish. And I warn you, that a wicked law, like cholera, destroys every one it touches. Its upholders as well as its defiers. Can't you understand?.... And soon you may ban books and newspapers. And then you may turn Catholic against Protestant, and Protestant against Protestant. If you can do one, you can do the other. Because fanaticism and ignorance is forever busy, and needs feeding."

I disagree with President Lyman above - it is not a nuclear age or terrorism, but rather the men and women of the age who determine whether the disease of dictatorship and fascism continues to infect or is killed in the sunlight of pure democracy.
America deserves better. We the people deserve better.

This will be my America and my vote: (Are you listening, Democrats?)

An end to the war in Iraq and an end to its funding. An end to the lies that kill.

A Sunday morning bathed in autumn sunlight, presidential candidates and members of Congress standing on the tarmac at Dover AFB, ready and willing to serve as pallbearers for the caskets that cradle our American pride and joy now stilled by this senseless war.

A mosque in Detroit surrounded by Christian and Muslim Americans embracing their love of GOD and rejecting the fear of GOP.

A border town bulldozing chain-link fences and reciting Robert Frost.

A multinational corporation showing up at a veterans' hospital with building materials and employment counselors and funding for those for whom duty and honor are not political marketing slogans.

A child, born in the security of never going without health care, and parents never having to choose to which of their children they can afford to give medical treatment or where they will all live after selling off house and home to pay hospital bills.

Impossible, you say? Impractical and unreal?

My friend, this is America. We have danced on the moon and scuffed the dust of Mars. We once put pen to paper and ignited a revolution heard round the world.

We are not descended from fearful men. (from Fran A)

Culture of fear is a term that refers to a perceived prevalence of fear and anxiety in public discourse and relationships, and how this may affect the way people interact with one another as individuals and as democratic agents. Among those who share this perception there are a variety of different claims as to the sources and consequences of the trend they seek to describe; however, most share the basic claim that this is a relatively new mass media-related phenomenon with important and potentially harmful implications.

Variations on the thesis

Several different social commentators have offered different Culture of Fear theses, each with a distinctive emphasis. They may be categorised along a spectrum, from those which consider the phenomenon to be consciously directed - a deliberate policy of scaremongering - to those which treat it as arising spontaneously out of historical developments, as a reflexive response to other changes in human society.

Constructed fear

Among those tending to argue that a Culture of Fear is being deliberately manufactured might be counted linguist Noam Chomsky, sociologist Barry Glassner, political filmmakers such as Adam Curtis and Michael Moore or reporters such as Judith Miller. The motives offered for such a deliberate programme of scaremongering vary, but hinge on the potential for increased social control that a mistrustful and mutually fearing population might offer to those in power. In these accounts, fears are carefully and repeatedly created and fed by anyone who wishes to create fear, often through the manipulation of words, facts, news, sources or data, in order to induce certain personal behaviors, justify governmental actions or policies (at home or abroad), keep people consuming, elect demagogic politicians, or distract the public's attention from allegedly more urgent social issues like poverty, social security, unemployment, crime or pollution. Such commentators suggest that we consider a range of cultural processes as deliberate techniques for scaremongering. For example:

Careful selection and omission of news (some relevant facts are shown and some are not);
Distortion of statistics or numbers;
Transformation of single events into social epidemics; (Salem witch trials)
Corruption and distortion of words or terminology according to specific goals;
Stigmatization of minorities, especially when associated with criminal acts, degrading behaviour or immigration policies; (Yellow Peril)
Generalization of complex and multifaceted situations;
Causal inversion (turning a cause into an effect or vice-versa);
Outright fabrication of events or claims.
Emergent fear

At the other end of the spectrum, a Culture of Fear is presented as a sensibility that emerges from every corner of contemporary society, spontaneously. Frank Furedi, a Professor of Sociology at the University of Kent (UK), who also founded the Revolutionary Communist Party of Great Britain, exemplifies this end of the spectrum with his books, Culture of Fear: Risk-taking and the Morality of Low Expectations (1997) and Politics of Fear: Beyond Left and Right (2005). Furedi's account locates the source of the phenomenon in what he characterises a 'failure of historical imagination', a symptom of what he identifies as the exhaustion of 20th century systems of political meaning.

It was my experience of the 1995 contraceptive Pill panic that motivated me to write Culture of Fear. I carried out a global study of national reactions to the panic, and it quickly became clear that the differential responses were culturally informed. Some societies, like Britain and Germany, responded in a confused, panic-like fashion - while countries like France, Belgium and Hong Kong adopted a more calm and measured approach. [1]

By Furedi's account, a universal sense of fearfulness pre-exists and underpins the expression of fears by media and politicians. While media and politicians might amplify and exploit this sensibility, their activities are not decisive in its cultural production. Furedi levels the charge at various 'anti-establishment' or 'liberal' voices that they are at least as complicit in the exploitation of fears (ecological catastrophe, for example) as the 'establishment' that is more commonly held to benefit from the culture of fear.

Lack of fear

Some commentators[citation needed] also point out that a process similar to that of creating fear can be used to dampen it either by trivializing or outright ignoring the problem, a kind of death by apathy. It's hard to be scared of something which doesn't exist. Examples of this are the issues of asbestos and cigarettes: until people could conclusively prove harm, all these problems were commonly treated as if they were nonexistent. Another example could be the idea of not reporting on wars to give the appearance they don't exist or to attempt to downplay their significance.

Case studies

Each of the above commentators has picked out examples from recent public discourse to illustrate their case. In each case, the general argument is that the nature of the threat described in public discourse is out of all proportion to the real risks and harms entailed. Different commentators focus on different aspects of such cases - for example, one will focus on how stories might be distorted as they filter through the national media, while another will concentrate on the receptivity of the audience, or its willingness to alter its behaviour or voting preferences. For each case, there may be several experts and organizations who dispute the implication that the issue is unduly exaggerated.

Anonymous - Internet Hate Machine?
Antibiotic resistance - Will germs become immune to drugs? (e.g. MRSA, known as the Superbug)
Bioengineering - Could bio-engineered food have undesired effects in the human body, or might bio-engineered plants cause havoc in the environment?
Breast implants - Do they leak?
Cellular phones - Do they cause brain cancer and fires at gas stations?
Chemtrails - Harmless contrails? Or traces of secret atmosphere-altering projects?
Drug companies - What are the side effects of prescription drugs?
Drug prohibition - Should recreational drugs be legal?
Dungeons & Dragons & Harry Potter & music - Do they corrupt children's minds?
Food safety - Is food safe to eat? Does it consist possibly harmful bioengineered corn? Might it contain E. coli?
Global Warming - What is the global impact of rising CO2 levels?
Google - Does aggregation of search term data potentially compromise customer privacy?
Hackers - Will they gain access to my computer?
Home security - Are homeowners and tenants safe from intruders?
HIV - How contagious is the disease?
Identity theft - Is somebody going to destroy my life by impersonating me?
Immunizations - Are they safe even though they are made from chicken eggs and contain mercury?
Killer Bees - How lethal are they?
Missing white woman syndrome and other kidnapping fears - How does one protect one's family?
Nuclear power - What are the effects of long term exposure to radiation?
Organ Trafficking - Are people waking up with a kidney missing?
Ozone hole - Will the ozone hole cause greater incidences of cancer?
Paganism & Witchcraft - Can we trust our neighbors? A target of many Conservative Christian groups.
Pandemics - Is there a disease somewhere which will spread uncontrollably and kill everyone?
Pedophilia or nanny abuse - Can one trust strangers with ones children? Should every man who seems to like kids be treated as a danger? Panics including the harassment of a pediatrician in the UK.
Poor - Are they desperate enough to rob the better off?
Red Scares - Hundreds of people were imprisoned, blacklisted, or deported out of fear of anarchism and communism.
Satanic ritual abuse - Are strangers out to kidnap children? Several high-profile cases of children being erroneously taken into care.
Second hand smoke - Can one get cancer from it?
Snuff films - Could ones loved ones be kidnapped to be killed on film?
Social Network - Could children be kidnapped / stalked / encounter an Online Predator -- see MySpace and Facebook
Social Security reform - Will today's workers have a safety net when they retire?
Sudan I - A food scare in the United Kingdom.
Terrorism - Are people from other countries safe to be around?
Vaccines - Do they cause Autism in young children?
Violent and/or sexually explicit video games - Are videogames corrupting youth?
Water Quality - What toxins are in our tap water? Is fluoride dangerous? Are bottled waters safer?
Political context and criticism
The conduct of and rhetoric surrounding the "War on Terrorism" and the 2003 Invasion of Iraq have been a prime target of criticism by those of many political ideologies. In this context, the "culture of fear" is purportedly generated by the Bush Administration and its allies, in a top-down effort to increase support for strong military and domestic security operations. In a broader domestic political context, many believe that conservative politicians and moral leaders make people afraid about things such as terrorism, crime or illegal drugs both to influence public opinion and personal behavior.
Conservative talk show hosts have accused many liberal groups of creating irrational fears to manipulate people for their purpose or being solely motivated by fears.[1] While certain liberal points may be valid, conservatives accuse liberals of demonizing certain people and entities. To these conservative speakers, liberal speakers much talk of "Big Oil" "Big Tobacco" giving large complex entities such human, selfish, and amoral qualities that, something, "anything", must be done. [citation needed] Right leaning politicians in power have often been vilified by the left, say conservatives, and the resulting fears and doubts are not generated by the politicians themselves, but of the naysayers speaking dishonestly and frightfully about their opponents. Some have claimed that this led to the ousting of Newt Gingrich as Speaker of the House.[citation needed] But conservatives have conducted tactics similar to that which they have accused the left. Bill Clinton received quite a bit of vilification from the right. [citation needed] The term "Big Government" was often used pejoratively in discussions relating to nationalizing health care. [citation needed] Before the 90s, Ronald Reagan was often vilified. The history of vilification of presidents in the United States goes back towards the beginning of the 19th century. [citation needed]
The idea of a society-wide "culture of fear" might be perceived by liberals and other opponents of conservatives as a shorthand for cultural manipulation for conservative political purposes.
Conversely, liberals have also been accused of their fair share of scaremongering to suit their own political agendas, especially on issues of environmental protection, global warming, biotechnology and gun safety.

There are several alternative views

Politicians and orators speak to create an environment more amicable to their intended policies and philosophy.
Promoters of a particular cause may want many people to join them in the cause. However, because people generally don't become emotional about something complex and hard to understand, promoters may tend to oversimplify matters to emphasize their main points and deemphasize points of contention.
Commercial media outlets are simply maximizing their audience, and scary information happens to be one thing that grabs people's attention. (Some would even argue that this serves the public interest.)
On issues that have not become strongly associated with left/right political controversy, an explosion of overblown fears in the public discourse might be labeled by other commentators as "scares". Typical symptoms of a scare include a lack of scientific or general education among the public, intrinsic human biases in the assessment of risk, a lack of rational thinking, misinformation, and giving too much weight to rumor.


Culture of Fear: Risk taking and the morality of low expectation, Frank Furedi, ISBN 0-8264-7616-3
The Culture of fear: The assault on optimism in America, Barry Glassner ISBN 0-465-01490-9
Manufacturing Consent: The political economy of the mass media, Edward S. Herman & Noam Chomsky ISBN 0-09-953311-1

Politics of Fear: Beyond Left and Right, Frank Furedi, ISBN 0-8264-8728-9
State of Fear, Michael Crichton, ISBN 0-06-621413-0
Urban Nightmares: The Media, the Right and the Moral Panic over the City, Steve Macek,ISBN 0-8166-4361-X
Kingdom of Fear: Loathsome Secrets of a Star-Crossed Child in the Final Days of the American Century. (Simon & Schuster; 1st Simon edition, November 1, 2003, ISBN 0-684-87324-9)
You Have the Power: Choosing Courage in a Culture of Fear Frances Moore Lappe and Jeffrey Perkins , ISBN 978-1585424245
[More: The Assault on Reason, Al Gore, opening chapter, “

External links

The culture of fear, by Barry Glassner - Introduction - "Why Americans are afraid of the wrong things"
The Culture of Fear by Frank Furedi - "Culture Of Fear: Risk-Taking And The Morality Of Low Expectation"
The Culture of Fear by Noam Chomsky
Beyond a Culture of Fear, by K. Lauren de Boer - article published in the EarthLight magazine, #47, fall/winter 2002/2003
A Legal Culture of Fear - Common Good : safeguarding Americans from a legal culture of fear. Philip K. Howard's testimony before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, June 22, 2004
You Have the Power: Choosing Courage in a Culture of Fear by Frances Moore Lappé and Jeffrey Perkins
Fearless News - An online community collecting statistics on fear in mass media
Creating Fear: News and the Construction of Crisis by David Altheide
The Political Implications of a Discourse of Fear: The Mass Mediated Discourse of Fear in the Aftermath of 9/11 by Stefanie Grupp Clasby


Posted by Adam Howard at 1:41 PM on October 21, 2007.

From Adam Howard: Mussolini created the blueprint, Hitler followed suit, Stalin studied Hitler and it all leads to Bush.
Even though her message is frightening, Naomi Wolf wants to assure people that there can be a light at the end of the tunnel. The YouTube video is a terrific speech by Wolf (at Kane Hall on the University of Washington campus) about her provocative new book "The End of America" which talks about the parallels between the Bush Administration's tactics and those of fascist dictatorships of the last century.
The same language, images, manipulation that would-be despots have used in the past to break down existing democracies are being employed now. From Italy in the 1920s, Germany in the 1930s, and on and on, Wolf finds that all these despots do that same things. Mussolini created the blueprint, Hitler followed suit, Stalin studied Hitler and these methods just get passed down to the next generation of dictators throughout the world. Wolf has summarized their method in ten points:
1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy
2. Create a gulag
3. Develop a thug caste
4. Set up an internal surveillance system
5. Harass citizens' groups
6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release
7. Target key individuals
8. Control the press
9. Dissent equals treason
10. Suspend the rule of law
Wolf argues that all of these methods are underway in the United States right now. We ran a piece by Wolf just a couple weeks ago where she talked about number three, the thug caste, and Blackwater. In this video she provides ample evidence of all the other ten as well.
She says she wrote this book to inspire young people in particular to combat this trend, and to restore democracy asap. The arguments she marks are compelling, thoroughly researched and impossible to dispute. So what can we do? What is the light at the end of the tunnel? You'll have to skip ahead to about the 5:37 mark to find out.
Tagged as: bush administration, fascism

Adam Howard is the editor of PEEK.

Dick Bennett

Fayetteville residents going to Little Rock on Saturday morning for antiwar happening web button
Arkansas Coalition for Peace and Justice, and Women Acting in New Directions (WAND) are co-sponsoring a

of National Antiwar Protests happening across the US
October 27
11:00 am
intersection of Bowman Road and Chenal Parkway
Little Rock

Omni members and others from Northwest Arkansas will join them
leaving 7:30 am Saturday morning.
For details, email Gladys at

Saturday, October 20, 2007

OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology to Send Delegation to Little Rock for Oct. 27 peace rally web button

PLEASE CLICK on poster above to visit Oct. 27 Website.

Have they been ignoring us so long we’ve got used to it? Sure hope not. United for Peace and Justice is holding major regional mobilizations in 11 cities on October 27. That’s just one week away. Take a look at the website, ( and see if you can attend any of them. The southern city is New Orleans. Hope some of us can go.

This is a major chance for Americans to say to our rogue government “we do not support this.” We’ve got to do it.
Because New Orleans is a 12-hour drive away, it’s been difficult to find people with time and energy to make the trip.

Some of us who can’t make it to New Orleans have decided to tool over to Little Rock for the Saturday event.

Others may go to Oklahoma City, where there will be a smaller demonstration in support of the major ones. It’s only a 3-hour drive, and we’d like to carpool or caravan over.

Is there anybody else who’s as upset about this war as we are? You’re welcome to join us for this little trek. We plan to meet some OK City peace people, speak our truth, have a good meal, and come home. And, OK City’s an ‘old’ peace group we may be able to learn something from. The networking will be fun.

If this strikes a light for you, email Gladys at . We’ll be finalizing plans in just a few days, and really want to include you.


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Is the experiment in democratic government ending?

Are we close to seeing the end of the United States' EXPERIMENT IN DEMOCRACY?
I recommend a new video and new book that respond to this question: PBS' Frontline program (Oct. 16)"Cheney's Law" on Cheney's successful drive to give the executive branch supreme power. And Naomi Wolf's THE END OF AMERICA, which sets forth 10 ways in history by which dictators have destroyed democracies. These together expose the tyrannous consequences of more than a half century of National Security State, Cold War, illegal interventions, and invasions, secrecy, censorship, repression, increase of executive power, and Congressional relinquishment of oversight. A striking thing about the video is Cheney's and Bush's assumption that the Congress will be unable to oppose their power grab, and the public will not. I urge you all to see and read, purchase and distribute.

Dick Bennett

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Indigenous people's day


Monday October 8 is the old Columbus Day. Some day, I hope, it will be replaced by Indigenous People's Day. I believe you will agree with me once you read the opening chapter of Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States or any accurate account of the genocide that ensued from his landing in our hemisphere, including President Jackson's forced removal of the eastern Native Americans to Oklahoma via the "Trail of Tears."
OMNI is allied with the Heritage Trails Partners and with the Native Americans Symposium for an Indigenous Peoples of the Americas Observance beginning next Friday Oct. 12. Please come read and walk.
11 a.m to 2 p.m. discuss and read passages of your choosing in the Connections Lounge of the UA Student Union. I will bring along Wallace's The Long, Bitter Trail, in case you don't have time to find a passage to read. Several of us could read the entire account.
Then at 2p.m a procession will walk from the Lounge to the monument on U.S. highway 62 (6th St. between the street and the soccer field south of FHS). Or meet the procession there probably about 2:30.
Let me know if you plan to attend either or both of these events, or just show up.

(Another reason for abolishing Columbus Day is its commodification for profit by businesses. JCPenney's "3 Day Super Hot Buys!" But I suppose everything that can be commodified has been. Nieman Marchus is already advertising for Christ-mas: a talking robot only $75,000. So yes, as you are already thinking, Indigenous Peoples' Day will also be turned into profit. But we'll prevent that ok?)

Dick Bennett

Casualties in Iraq, The Valley of Elah


I have been preparing a special newsletter on Iraq, and it will be sent soon. But this report thoroughly covers wounded and dead since 2003. All of us should keep this handy for our calls, letters, speeches, conversations. (Thanks to Chris Delacruz for sending it.)



What it does not include is the numbers of people made mentally and morally (psychopathic) ill by the war. I urge you to see THE VALLEY OF ELAH, with Tommy Lee Jones playing an ex-Army father searching for his GI son just returned from Iraq who has disappeared. It's fine film art, the story multilayered with meanings, beginning with the title. Times: 12:55, 4:15, 7:05, 9:50 (and apparently a morning showing at 10). These times are when the previews begin; the film starts 10 minutes later.

Dick Bennett

Casualties in Iraq

I have been preparing a special newsletter on Iraq, and it will be sent soon. But this
thoroughly covers wounded and dead since 2003. All of us should keep this handy for our calls, letters, speeches, conversations. (Thanks to Chris Delacruz for sending it.)


What it does not include is the numbers of people made mentally and morally (psychopathic) ill by the war. I urge you to see THE VALLEY OF ELAH, with Tommy Lee Jones playing an ex-Army father searching for his GI son just returned from Iraq who has disappeared. It's fine film art, the story multilayered with meanings, beginning with the title. Times: 12:55, 4:15, 7:05, 9:50 (and apparently a morning showing at 10). These times are when the previews begin; the film starts 10 minutes later.

Dick Bennett

Friday, October 5, 2007

Arctic melting startling even to sea-ice experts

Arctic Melt Unnerves the Experts

by: Andrew C. Revkin 3 October 2007 The New York Times

The Arctic ice cap shrank so much this summer that waves briefly lapped along two long-imagined Arctic shipping routes, the Northwest Passage over Canada and the Northern Sea Route over Russia.

Over all, the floating ice dwindled to an extent unparalleled in a century or more, by several estimates.

Now the six-month dark season has returned to the North Pole. In the deepening chill, new ice is already spreading over vast stretches of the Arctic Ocean. Astonished by the summer's changes, scientists are studying the forces that exposed one million square miles of open water — six Californias — beyond the average since satellites started measurements in 1979.

At a recent gathering of sea-ice experts at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, Hajo Eicken, a geophysicist, summarized it this way: "Our stock in trade seems to be going away."

Scientists are also unnerved by the summer's implications for the future, and their ability to predict it.

Complicating the picture, the striking Arctic change was as much a result of ice moving as melting, many say. A new study, led by Son Nghiem at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and appearing this week in Geophysical Research Letters, used satellites and buoys to show that winds since 2000 had pushed huge amounts of thick old ice out of the Arctic basin past Greenland. The thin floes that formed on the resulting open water melted quicker or could be shuffled together by winds and similarly expelled, the authors said.

The pace of change has far exceeded what had been estimated by almost all the simulations used to envision how the Arctic will respond to rising concentrations of greenhouse gases linked to global warming. But that disconnect can cut two ways. Are the models overly conservative? Or are they missing natural influences that can cause wide swings in ice and temperature, thereby dwarfing the slow background warming?

The world is paying more attention than ever.

Russia, Canada and Denmark, prompted in part by years of warming and the ice retreat this year, ratcheted up rhetoric and actions aimed at securing sea routes and seabed resources.

Proponents of cuts in greenhouse gases cited the meltdown as proof that human activities are propelling a slide toward climate calamity.

Arctic experts say things are not that simple. More than a dozen experts said in interviews that the extreme summer ice retreat had revealed at least as much about what remains unknown in the Arctic as what is clear. Still, many of those scientists said they were becoming convinced that the system is heading toward a new, more watery state, and that human-caused global warming is playing a significant role.

For one thing, experts are having trouble finding any records from Russia, Alaska or elsewhere pointing to such a widespread Arctic ice retreat in recent times, adding credence to the idea that humans may have tipped the balance. Many scientists say the last substantial warming in the region, peaking in the 1930s, mainly affected areas near Greenland and Scandinavia.

Some scientists who have long doubted that a human influence could be clearly discerned in the Arctic's changing climate now agree that the trend is hard to ascribe to anything else.

"We used to argue that a lot of the variability up to the late 1990s was induced by changes in the winds, natural changes not obviously related to global warming," said John Michael Wallace, a scientist at the University of Washington. "But changes in the last few years make you have to question that. I'm much more open to the idea that we might have passed a point where it's becoming essentially irreversible."

Experts say the ice retreat is likely to be even bigger next summer because this winter's freeze is starting from such a huge ice deficit. At least one researcher, Wieslaw Maslowski of the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif., projects a blue Arctic Ocean in summers by 2013.

In essence, Arctic waters may be behaving more like those around Antarctica, where a broad fringe of sea ice builds each austral winter and nearly disappears in the summer. (Reflecting the different geography and dynamics at the two poles, there has been a slight increase in sea-ice area around Antarctica in recent decades.)

While open Arctic waters could be a boon for shipping, fishing and oil exploration, an annual seesawing between ice and no ice could be a particularly harsh jolt to polar bears.

Many Arctic researchers warned that it was still far too soon to start sending container ships over the top of the world. "Natural variations could turn around and counteract the greenhouse-gas-forced change, perhaps stabilizing the ice for a bit," said Marika Holland, of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo.

But, she added, that will not last. "Eventually the natural variations would again reinforce the human-driven change, perhaps leading to even more rapid retreat," Dr. Holland said. "So I wouldn't sign any shipping contracts for the next 5 to 10 years, but maybe the next 20 to 30."

While experts debate details, many agree that the vanishing act of the sea ice this year was probably caused by superimposed forces including heat-trapping clouds and water vapor in the air, as well as the ocean-heating influence of unusually sunny skies in June and July. Other important factors were warm winds flowing from Siberia around a high-pressure system parked over the ocean. The winds not only would have melted thin ice but also pushed floes offshore where currents and winds could push them out of the Arctic Ocean.

But another factor was probably involved, one with roots going back to about 1989. At that time, a periodic flip in winds and pressure patterns over the Arctic Ocean, called the Arctic Oscillation, settled into a phase that tended to stop ice from drifting in a gyre for years, so it could thicken, and instead carried it out to the North Atlantic.

The new NASA study of expelled old ice builds on previous measurements showing that the proportion of thick, durable floes that were at least 10 years old dropped to 2 percent this spring from 80 percent in the spring of 1987, said Ignatius G. Rigor, an ice expert at the University of Washington and an author of the new NASA-led study.

Without the thick ice, which can endure months of nonstop summer sunshine, more dark open water and thin ice absorbed solar energy, adding to melting and delaying the winter freeze.

The thinner fresh-formed ice was also more vulnerable to melting from heat held near the ocean surface by clouds and water vapor. This may be where the rising influence of humans on the global climate system could be exerting the biggest regional influence, said Jennifer A. Francis of Rutgers University.

Other Arctic experts, including Dr. Maslowski in Monterey and Igor V. Polyakov at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, also see a role in rising flows of warm water entering the Arctic Ocean through the Bering Strait between Alaska and Russia, and in deep currents running north from the Atlantic Ocean near Scandinavia.

A host of Arctic scientists say it is too soon to know if the global greenhouse effect has already tipped the system to a condition in which sea ice in summers will be routinely limited to a few clotted passageways in northern Canada.

But at the university in Fairbanks — where signs of northern warming include sinkholes from thawing permafrost around its Arctic research center — Dr. Eicken and other experts are having a hard time conceiving a situation that could reverse the trends.

"The Arctic may have another ace up her sleeve to help the ice grow back," Dr. Eicken said. "But from all we can tell right now, the means for that are quite limited."

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Speak up against Bush's threat to attack Iran

Dick Bennett

OMNI is opposing President Bush's threats toward Iran backed up by
3 battle fleets in the Gulf of Hormuz, which violate the UN Charter (i.e.
violating a treaty, the law of our land, an impeachable offense). (Do read
your map to see how provocatively narrow is the Gulf. Imagine a another
country with similar aggression off the coast of NYC or San Francisco.) *We
have published five online newsletters alerting readers to this new US
aggression and providing materials for individual resistance.
*In a Forum on Religious Peace Traditions we asked why the congregations are
silent about these threats. We hope to convene a second this fall. Will you
help? Contact Dick Bennett *We are arranging programs on Persian-Iranian
history and culture as one other foundation for opposing the Bush
administration's imperial ambitions. (The U.S. invasion of Iraq destroyed
its invaluable Middle Eastern museum collections, its national theater, and
other cultural sites throughout the country.)


History: Prof. Joel Gordon, will lecture on history of Persia/Iran, Sept.
21 (UN International Day of Peace) 12:00 noon in Old Main. "Shahs and
Ayatollahs: Iran in World History." The lecture will be preceded by
reception and meal.
Joel Gordon, Professor of History, University of Arkansas-Fayetteville has
been teaching Islamic and modern Middle East history at the University of
Arkansas since 1999. A specialist on Middle East popular culture, cinema,
politics and Islamic movements, he is the author of 3 books on modern Egypt
and numerous articles. His lecture will trace the history of Iran from
antiquity, with particular emphasis on Iran's contributions to classical
Islamic civilization, the emergence of a modern nation-state, Iran's place
in the Cold War, and the unique path Iran has followed since the 1979
"Islamic" revolution. The lecture will conclude with some thoughts about
the present state or Iranian-American relations and prospects for armed

Literature: Prof. Mohja Kahf will lecture on a classic of Persian literature
sometime in late October or early Nov.

Art: Ms Golsa Yaghoobi will give an illustrated lecture on the history of
Persian/Iranian art on December 10, Human Rights Day.


I know we all believe (and all acted on that belief in opposing the
invasion of Iraq) that we must try to prevent unjust wars. So please
participate, assist, publicize however you are inclined and able in creating
programs that tell about the people and culture of Iran, and expand US moral
imagination regarding another manufactured enemy. We are seeking to contact
all Iranians in NWA. Please help. Michael Freeman of UA's International
Students office has notified the Iranian students about our cultural
programs. Please help. Recently at Farmer's Market I met one UA student who
expressed interest in spreading the word that citizens in the US do care
about the people of Iran. Iranians in the US and Iranian Americans must
feel at least uneasy and even very frightened and horrified by Bush's
threats, especially if they have relatives and friends living there. Help
OMNI create an effective voice to stop this president's and complicit
mainstream media's drumbeat for another war.

Dick Bennett

Monday, October 1, 2007

Architect says stop coal to stop global warming

Subject: Stop Coal, Stop Global Warming?

http ://

September 21, 2007

Stop coal, stop global warming, says architect
Posted by Michael Kanellos

To put a dent in global warming, we are going to have to stop using coal, said Ed Mazria, founder of Architecture 2030 at the West Coast Green conference taking place in San Francisco this week.

"The only fossil fuel that can fuel global warming is coal. If you stop coal, you stop global warming. End of story," he said. Architecture 2030 is a nonprofit that encourages builders, suppliers and architects to move toward making carbon neutral buildings by 2030.

The problem with coal is two fold: it spews a lot of carbon dioxide, among other materials into the air, and the world has a lot of it, making it tempting to use. In the U.S. alone, there are 151 coal plants in the planning and construction phase.

The emissions from a single coal-fired power plant for one month will negate the efforts Wal-Mart is putting forth to curb its emissions. Wal-Mart wants to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent in seven years, he said.

Home Depot has announced it will plant 300,000 trees to offset is carbon dioxide. Unfortunately, those 300,000 trees will have to live 100 years before they offset the fumes from ten days from a coal-fired plant, he said. Replace every incandescent bulb in America with compact fluorescents? The benefits are eradicated by the carbon dioxide from two coal-fired plants over a year, he said.

"The silver bullet is no more coal," he said.

The coal question is the big question in the green industry. Coal plants do put a lot of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, but getting rid of them rapidly, say many, is economically unfeasible. Some have begun to advocate erecting more nuclear power plants to offset coal use. Several companies have also put forward ideas for cleaning up coal.

Of course, that won't be easy, but there are technologies and ideas that can help right now, said Mazria. Designing buildings to take advantage of passive cooling and natural lighting will cut energy use. Solar panels will reduce fossil fuels, he said. Architecture 2030's goal is to make the building sector carbon neutral by that year. According to stats from Oak Ridge National Laboratories, buildings consume approximately 48 percent of the energy in the U.S. (43 percent goes to operations, 8 percent goes to construction) and account for 43 percent of the greenhouse gases. 76 percent of the electricity generated in the U.S. goes to operating buildings.

And the U.S. has conserved before. Energy use between 1973 and 1983 stayed relatively flat, according to stats from the Energy Information Agency, he said. But in that time period, 35 million new cars got on the road.

Mazria also showed off some very scary simulations of what will happen if sea levels rise to a meter or more. A lot of coastal Florida will vanish at 1 meter. Galveston, Texas goes under at 1.5 meters.

Climate change may become irreversible if the atmosphere hits 450 parts per million of carbon dioxide, he said, citing studies. Right now, the earth is at 385 parts per million and the figure is currently rising at 2.2 parts every year. Without changes, we will hit the 450 level by 2035, he asserted.

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)