Sunday, August 31, 2008

RNC--Upholding The Constitution--NOT

Date: Sat, Aug 30, 2008 at 7:50 PM
[Please use phone numbers at bottom of this message to make calls]

RNC2—Raid on the Convergence Center By Starhawk

It's Friday night. Our Pagan Cluster is sitting on the bluff of the Mississippi having our first real meeting, when Lisa gets a call. The cops are raiding the Convergence Center, where we're organizing meetings and trainings for the protests against the Republican National Convention.
It's not a role play, the caller says. It's real.

Instantly, we jump up and hurry back the six or eight blocks to the old theater we are using for meetings, trainings and social gatherings. I 've spent the last two days doing magical activism trainings, teaching people how to stay calm and grounded in emergency situations and when things get chaotic. Now it's time to put the training into practice. Aaron, a tall, red-headed young man who could be one of my nephews strides along beside me. "Are you grounded?" I ask him. He nods, and runs ahead.

Nobody can keep up with Lisa, who speeds ahead like an arrow, walking, not running, but still covering the ground quickly. Andy and I trail behind. We're often street buddies, because we're both big, slow, and supremely calm and stubborn, willing to wade into almost any situation and become the immovable object.

We're stopped by a line of cops just before we reach the building. They refuse to let us through, or to move their van which is blocking Scarecrow's car. There's an investigation underway, they say, and won't say more.

Brush, our dear friend, is inside, having gone to a jail solidarity meeting, ironically enough. So are two very young people who had just joined our cluster that night. I try calling Brush's cell phone, but get no reply.

We wait. That's what you do when the cops have guns trained on kids inside a building. You wait, and witness, and make phone calls, and try to think of useful things to do.
We call lawyers. We call politicians. We try to call media. We call friends who might know politicians and media.

Through the kitchen door, we cansee young kids sitting on the floor, handcuffed. We walk across the street, back, made more phone calls. An ambulance is parked in front, and the paramedics head into the building, leaving a gurney ready. Susu, from her car around the corner, reports that the cops have been grabbing pedestrians from the street, forcing them down to the ground, handcuffing them.

Song, one of the local organizers, calls her City Council member. She wants to call the Mayor, Chris Coleman, who has promised that St. Paul will be as welcoming to protestors as to delegates, but no one has his home number.

What I have forgotten to tell people at the training is how much of an action is just this: tense, boring waiting, with a knot of anxiety in your stomach and your feet starting to hurt. Song talks to a helpful neighbor, who's come over to find out what's happening. He knows where the mayor lives, says it's just a few blocks away, and draws us a map.

We decide to go and call on the Mayor, who could call off the cops. About five of us troop down there, through the soft night and a neighborhood of comfortable homes and wide lawns on the bluffs above the Mississippi. The Mayor's house is a comfortable Dutch Colonial, and lights were on inside. We decide that just a few of us will go to the door, so as not to look intimidating. Song is a round, soft-bodied middle-aged woman with a sweet face. Ellen is a tiny brunette with a gap-toothed smile, and Lisa, formidable organizer though she is, looks slight and unthreatening. The rest of us hang back. Someone opens the door. Our friends have a conversation with the mayors' wife, who is not pleased to be visited by constituents late at night, and who tells us we should call the office. The Mayor, she says, is asleep, and she will not wake him up.

We think a mayor who was doing his job would get up and go see what's going on. Nonetheless, we head back to the convergence space.

A protestor has been released from the building. A small crowd has gathered across the street, and Fox News has arrived. They interview Song, who does her first ever Fox media spot. She tells them the truth—that people were in there watching movies—a documentary about Meridel Le Seuer. Meridel would be proud, and I'm glad she is with us in some form.

One by one, protestor's trickle out. Now we get more pieces of the story. The cops burst in, with no warning. They pulled drew their guns on everyone—including a five year old child who was there with his mother, forced everyone down on the floor. It was terrifying.

They had a warrant, apparently, from the county, not the city, to search for 'bomb making materials.' They were searching everyone in the building, then one by one releasing them as they found nothing.

They continue to find nothing, as we wait through long hours. Meanwhile, more and more media arrives. These cops are not as creative as the DC cops during our first mobilization there against the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Those cops confiscated the lunchtime soup—which included onions and chili powder, claiming they were materials for home made pepper spray.

We wait until the last person gets out. He's a twenty year old who the cops have accused of stealing his own backpack—but apparently they relented.

And now it's morning. I wake up to the news that cops have been raiding houses where activists are staying, bursting in with the same bogus warrant and arresting people, including a four year old child. They've arrested people at the Food Not Bombs house—a group dedicated to feeding protestors and the homeless. They've arrested others, presumably just for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The Poor Peoples' Campaign, which had set up camp at Harriet Island, a park in the middle of the Mississippi, has also been harassed, its participants ordered to disperse and its organizers arrested.

Let me be perfectly clear here—all of us here are planning nonviolent protests against an administration which is responsible for immense violence, bombs that have destroyed whole countries, and hundreds of thousands of deaths.

This is the America that eight years of the Bush administration have brought us, a place where dissent is no longer tolerated, where pre-emptive strikes have become the strategy of choice for those who hold power, where any group can be accused of 'bombmaking' or 'terrorism' on no evidence whatsoever in order to deter dissent.

Please stand with us. Because it could be your home they are raiding, next.

Call the Mayors of St. Paul and Minneapolis. Tell them you are outraged by these attacks on dissent. Urge them to let Poor People encamp and to let dissent be heard.


St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman 651-266-8510

Minneapolis Mayor RT Rybak (612) 673-2100
(612) 673-3000 outside Minneapolis

Ramsey County Sheriff's Office (651) 266-9333
--IndyMedia Coverage:

Across Twin Cities Police Move Aggressively Against Activists

Police Conduct Massive Raids, Arrests, Property Seizures at RNC; Demos to Go On

History II

"Human history is the sad result of each one looking out for himself."
--Julio Cortazar

Saturday, August 30, 2008


"No modest man ever did or ever will make a fortune." --Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1689-1762), English writer

Friday, August 29, 2008


"The ocean, king of mountains and the mighty continents
Are not heavy burdens to bear when compared
To the burden of not repaying the world's kindness."

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Living VI

"A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between his work and his play, his labour and his leisure, his mind and his body, his education and his recreation. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence through whatever he is doing, and leaves others to determine if he is working or playing. To himself hr always seems to be doing both"
--Author Unknown

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Change III

"There is one thing you have got to learn about our movement. Three people are better than no people."
--Fannie Lou Hamer (1917-1977) US activist

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


"No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting."
--Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1689-1762), English writer

Monday, August 25, 2008


"Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of that song? The guy who wrote that song wrote everything."
--Steven Wright

Sunday, August 24, 2008


"Flesh eating is simply immoral, as it involves the performance of anact which is contrary to moral feeling: killing. By killing, mansuppresses in himself, unnecessarily, the highest spiritual capacity,that of sympathy and pity towards living creatures like himself and by violating his own feelings becomes cruel." --Leo Tolstoy

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Technology II

"Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage, and those who manage what they do not understand."
--Putt's Law

Friday, August 22, 2008

Deja Vu III

"If the president, for example, approves something because of the national security, or in this case because of a threat to internal peace and order of significant magnitude, then the president's decision in that instance is one that enables those who carry it out, to carry it out without violating a law. Otherwise they're in an impossible position."
--Richard M. Nixon, David Frost Interview

Thursday, August 21, 2008


"Honest criticism is hard to take, particularly from a relative, a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger."
--Franklin P. Jones

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


"You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand."
--Woodrow Wilson

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


"There are some questions which can be answered , and others which should wait for an answer until those who ask them are able to understand."
--Pir Inayat Khan

Monday, August 18, 2008

Petition: Stokes Citizens Against Gassing

Sign Here

Stokes Citizens Against Gassing is currently petitioning our County Commissioners to ban the current method of euthanizing shelter animals in Stokes County using a gas chamber on the back of a truck or any form of gassing animals in our shelter. We submit that we would like for the county to switch to the humane method of lethal injection which is approved by MAJOR ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATIONS throughout the country! Your opinion matters! Our commissioners are the only ones who can stop this slow and agonizing death of the companion animals that end up in our shelter. By signing this petition you are saying you don't want your tax dollars spent supporting this outdated and inhumane form of population control in our county. Let it be known that Stokes is a compassionate community that performs this needed service, humanely. There is an overwhelming epidemic of pet overpopulation, be a part of the solution.

Sign Here


My comments, signature # 862:

When in the course of human events, the powers of government are used in a Hitlerian manner and innocents are gassed, it is time to dissolve such associations of evil and create new institutions that reflect the best of mankind, rather than the most vile forms of evil.


"Pastor" Rick Warren: Just Another Lying Huckster

Despite Assurances, McCain Wasn’t in a ‘Cone of Silence’

ORLANDO, Fla. — Senator John McCain was not in a “cone of silence” on Saturday night while his rival, Senator Barack Obama, was being interviewed at the Saddleback Church in California.

Members of the McCain campaign staff, who flew here Sunday from California, said Mr. McCain was in his motorcade on the way to the church as Mr. Obama was being interviewed by the Rev. Rick Warren, the author of the best-selling book “The Purpose Driven Life.”

The matter is of interest because Mr. McCain, who followed Mr. Obama’s hourlong appearance in the forum, was asked virtually the same questions as Mr. Obama. Mr. McCain’s performance was well received, raising speculation among some viewers, especially supporters of Mr. Obama, that he was not as isolated during the Obama interview as Mr. Warren implied.

Mr. Warren, the pastor of Saddleback, had assured the audience while he was interviewing Mr. Obama that “we have safely placed Senator McCain in a cone of silence” and that he could not hear the questions.

Mr. Warren started by asking Mr. McCain, “Now, my first question: Was the cone of silence comfortable that you were in just now?”

Mr. McCain deadpanned, “I was trying to hear through the wall.”

Interviewed Sunday on CNN, Mr. Warren seemed surprised to learn that Mr. McCain was not in the building during the Obama interview.

Full Article, NY Times, August 18, 2008


So we have another lying religious huckster. Surprise, Surprise, Surprise. Warren reeked of pomposity and being just another scam artist. Are you really surprised? The only surprise is that the truth came out so fast.

And Warren is "surprised", eh? Surprised that he caught in and called on a bald-faced lie...


FDA reports deaths with diabetes drug Byetta

The Food and Drug Administration said Monday it has received six new reports of patients developing a dangerous form of pancreatitis while taking Byetta. Two of the patients died and four were recovering.
Byetta competes against blockbuster drugs from GlaxoSmithKline PLC and Takeda Pharmaceuticals in the $24 billion global market for diabetes medications, according to health care research firm IMS Health.

Full Wire Service Article, SF Chronicle, August 18, 2008


$24 billion for diabetes drugs, virtually all of which have side effects that can lead to death. And we're to believe that the pharmaceutical drug cartel, American Diabetes Association, etc., are looking for a cure?

If you believe that, have I got a heck of a deal on a bridge for you...



"We live in the time where we have fictitious election results that elects a fictitious president. We live in a time where we have a man sending us to war for fictitious reasons."
--Michael Moore

Saturday, August 16, 2008

"Just A Dog"

People keep saying “he was just a dog”.

He was the one who got up with me every morning, no matter how early, to help me greet the morning.

He was the one who stood guard over our home, our family and the loneliness of my days.

He was the one who acted as the best alarm system around, letting us know when someone or something was approaching outside the door.

He was the one who slept at the door to the bedrooms, to make certain everyone was safe.

He was the one who loved the children. From the babies who would pull and tug at him and use him as a brace for wobbly legs learning to crawl or walk, to the older ones with whom he would sneak into their bed at night and cuddle close.

He didn’t rest until everyone was home safe and sound.

He was the explorer who wandered through the bushes in the yard, hunting for lizards or the scent of the woodland creatures that might happen by.

He was the guardian who would chase away those woodland creatures lest they harm one of us.

He was the one who came to lie on my feet or close to my chair at my desk, sensing the times when I was in pain either emotional or physical.

He was the one who looked at me with sparkling, happy eyes, a happy smile, a wagging tail, who wanted nothing from me except a kind word and a soft stroke of his head.

He was the one who never asked for anything from anyone except to just be near.

He was the one who cleaned up the crumbs from the babies or lived for that scrap of leftover supper.

He was the one who staved off the loneliness, the fear, the emptiness of a house whose children had grown and moved away.

He was the one who looked at me with guilty pleasure when they came to visit and let him get on the furniture with them, knowing I would not fuss.

He was the one whose only fear was the rolling thunder of a storm and who never wanted me to know he was afraid, but who would sit close until the storm was past, hoping for a reassuring pat or soft word.

He was the one who greeted me at the door when I returned from an errand, with a body language that let me know he was happy I was home, happy to be with me again, proud that he had done his job of guarding our home while I was gone.

He was the one who lived with his aging pain, not wanting to let go for fear of leaving me alone, leaving his job as my protector, my companion, my best friend.

He was the one who took one last look into my eyes as his grew dim, looking to make sure I was okay as his life slipped away, worried that he was leaving me alone.

He was the one whose soft hair I stroked and softly whispered to that he was going home, that it was okay to let go, that I loved him enough to send him home to God to wait for me at the Rainbow Bridge.

He was the one whose grave is close by so that he will always be near to the home and the people he loved so unconditionally and protected with such loyalty.

People say “he was only just a dog”.

To those I say, look closer and see the truth of who and what he truly was.

Bonnie Snider ©2003

This lovely piece is Bonnie’s tribute to her beloved Shorty:
I had to send my beloved Shorty to the Rainbow Bridge a few years ago. I still miss him so. He was a stray we found in the parking lot of a store, covered in mange, practically a skeleton. We took him home, got him the care he needed and blessed our lives for the next 15 years.

It speaks to just how much he meant to me.

Friday, August 15, 2008


"One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We're no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It is simply too painful to acknowledge -- even to ourselves -- that we've been so credulous. (So the old bamboozles tend to persist as the new bamboozles rise.)"
--Carl Sagan (1934-1996), Astro-physicist
Source: "The Fine Art of Baloney Detection," Parade, February 1, 1987

Thursday, August 14, 2008


"Better be the head of a cat than the tail of a lion."
--Italian Proverb

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

How The Mass Media Scams You: Russia & South Ossetia

Full credit to Lori of Citizens For Legitimate Government for these items:

Reuters caught with 'fake' pictures from Georgia --Media war against Russia 10 Aug 2008 This morning one can read on the BBC news site -- Reuters agency posts horrible pictures of Russian bombardments of allegedly civilian residential buildings. But what if you take a closer look? [See: A Georgian man cries next to his brother's body in the town of Gori, 80 km (50 miles) from Tbilisi, August 9, 2008. REUTERS/David Mdzinarishvili. Here he is again, alone still with some clothes on, or may be he got changed. The man in the checkered shirt keeps returning!]

CNN blamed for using misleading war video 12 Aug 2008 American broadcaster CNN has been accused of using the wrong pictures in their coverage of the conflict in South Ossetia. A Russian cameraman says footage of wrecked tanks and ruined buildings, which was purported to have been filmed in the town of Gori, in fact showed the South Ossetian capital Tskhinvali. Gori was said to be about to fall under the control of the Russian army but the cameraman says the video was actually shot in Tskhinvali, which had been flattened by Georgian shelling.


"My definition of an expert in any field is a person who knows enough about what's really going to be scared."
--P. J. Plauger, Computer Language, March 1983

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


"It was the Law of the Sea, they said.
Civilization ends at the waterline.
Beyond that, we all enter the food chain,
and not always right at the top."
-- Hunter S. Thompson

Monday, August 11, 2008

Mistakes IV

"A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable,
but more useful than a life spent doing nothing."
--George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) Irish comic dramatist

Sunday, August 10, 2008


It is easy to claim, ' I am God'; but it is bringing the highest ideal of God down to the lowest plane. It is as if the bubble were to say: ' I am the Sea.'
--Pir Inayat Khan

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Petition: Fire LA Death Camp Head Ed Boks

The killing at the Los Angeles Animal "Shelter" continues at a horrific pace and is well-documented.

Sign the petition calling for Boks to be fired.

My comments added to the petition, signature # 564:

The barbarity under Boks is on a Hitlerian scale. Send him to Iraq, he likes killing the innocent so much. At least in Iraq, Boks' victims would have a chance to fight back!


Deja Vu II

"There are men -- now in power in this country -- who do not respect dissent, who cannot cope with turmoil, and who believe that the people of America are ready to support repression as long as it is done with a quiet voice and a business suit."
--John V. Lindsay
Source: Speech, University of California, 2 April 1970

It's 1:30 A.M....

Do you know where John Edwards' lovetool is?

Fortunately, the corporate media is on the job!

I'm sleeping so much better now that there's 24/7 coverage of this BIG event.


Friday, August 08, 2008

Edwards Admits Sexual Affair; Lied as Presidential Candidate

Well that certainly affects my view of whether poor people should be treated like anything other than pondscum. Edwards had an affair, eh? Well that changes everything! Screw The poor!

Meanwhile, where are all the "Breaking News" emails from CBS, etc etc, on Bu$hCo sending the armada to Iran, and Kuwait being on a war footing?


What A Difference Freedom Makes

There's a beautiful, but very thin, black Jindo girl at East Valley Animal Shelter. We first saw her when we went to check on Bonita, the Chow-Chow who'd been left by his owner when he lost his job, home, etc...

My husband kindly volunteered to go back to the shelter and take the black Jindo's pictures and to find out what he could about her. He was able to spend some time with her and though a little shy, she came right up to him at the bars and sniffed his fingers and was really sweet! She was very calm with him, and didn't seem afraid. She's in the run with another dog - larger than herself - and after checking out Art's fingers, she went back to her friend. =0) She's quite beautiful, as you can see in the pictures. She has a wild look, probably because of her coloring; and she's extremely thin, making her legs look kinda gangly. She's eleven months old and is only 28 lbs. Her eyes are a lovely amber brown. We just love her wild look!

Crossposting GOOD NEWS! Rescued and adopted Jackie is now out of the shelter and will be in her forever home Saturday! The rescue organization in this case was The Jindo Project and their website including donation instructions are at: Jindo Project, Inc.. Photos of Jackie are here.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Something II

"I can't do everything, but I can do something. If we all did something. We could conquer anything."
--Robert L. Shimmel

Wednesday, August 06, 2008


"If there were in the world today any large number of people who desired their own happiness more than they desired the unhappiness of others, we could have paradise in a few years."
--Bertrand Russell

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


"There is absolutely no inevitability as long as there is a willingness to contemplate what is happening."
--Marshall McLuhan

Monday, August 04, 2008


"[It's] time for the human race to enter the solar system."
--Dan Quayle

Sunday, August 03, 2008

One By One

One by One, they pass by my cage,
Too old, too worn, too broken, no way.
Way past his time, he can't run and play.
Then they shake their heads slowly and go on their way.

A little old dog, arthritic and sore,
It seems I am not wanted anymore.
I once had a home, I once had a bed,
A place that was warm, and where I was fed.
Now my muzzle is gray, and my eyes slowly fail.
Who wants a dog so old and so frail?

My family decided I didn't belong,
I got in their way, my attitude was wrong.
Whatever excuse they made in their head,
Can't justify how they left me for dead.
Now I sit in this cage, where day after day,
The younger dogs get adopted away.

When I had almost come to the end of my rope,
You saw my face, and I finally had hope.
You saw thru the gray, and the legs bent with age,
And felt I still had life beyond this cage.
You took me home, gave me food and a bed,
And shared your own pillow with my poor tired head.

We snuggle and play, and you talk to me low,
You love me so dearly, you want me to know.
I may have lived most of my life with another,
But you outshine them with a love so much stronger.
And I promise to return all the love I can give,
To you, my dear person, as long as I live.

I may be with you for a week, or for years,
We will share many smiles, you will no doubt shed tears.
And when the time comes that God deems I must leave,
I know you will cry and your heart, it will grieve.
And when I arrive at the Bridge, all brand new,
My thoughts and my heart will still be with you.
And I will brag to all who will hear,
Of the person who made my last days so dear.

--Author Unknown

Saturday, August 02, 2008


"There will be a time when you believe everything is finished.
That will be the beginning."
--Louis L' Amour

Friday, August 01, 2008


Teach your children what we have taught our children,
that the Earth is our mother.
Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth.

--Chief Seattle