Fascism is the union of government with private business against the People.
"To The States, or any one of them, or to any city of The States: Resist much, Obey little; Once unquestioning obedience, at once fully enslaved; Once fully enslaved, no nation, state, city, ever afterward resumes its liberty." from "Caution" by Walt Whitman

Friday, September 30, 2011

2011-09-30 "AN OATHKEEPER'S QUESTION - ARE YOU WITH ME?" by John W. Wallace - OathKeeper
America was founded by people who came to this land in search of Liberty and opportunity. When an oppressive government began to restrict their Liberty in the 1770s, they hardened their resolve, took an oath to stand together and risked everything for the cause of Liberty. They ultimately won their independence and succeeded in breaking the chains and shackles of servitude to the King of England.

Those brave men and women understood that our rights come from our Creator, not from any government, and that our rights are UNALIENABLE – and cannot be taken away or diminished in any way by any government.

That’s why the constitution was written very carefully by the Founders who established a Republic to protect our UNALIENABLE RIGHTS.

The United States Constitution doesn’t contain thousands of pages of meaningless legal jargon, like most of the federal legislation written today, but rather it was written so that every American could easily understand it. It clearly limits the power of the federal government by only giving it very specific, enumerated powers. All other powers are reserved to the States and to the People.

Over the last 100 years or so, under both Republican and Democratic administrations, our federal government has gradually increased its powers beyond its Constitutional limitations, while our individual freedoms are gradually being lost to this ever growing and more intrusive government.

We are living in a country vastly different than the one many of us grew up in and one that has become almost foreign to us in many ways. America has become a country where our common language, core principles and shared beliefs have been unconstitutionally tossed aside by the socialists and globalists in our federal government and by radical activist judges who continually show their disdain for the will of the American people.

Our federal government has created new rights for a wide variety of special interest groups, encouraged a culture of dependency, all in the name of Fairness, Tolerance and Political Correctness, while at the same time, they are intolerant of us and call us tea baggers, truthers, birthers Fascists, Nazis and Racists because we dare to disagree with their socialist agenda and redistribution of our wealth.

There is only one way to bring our federal government back to its original foundation and limitation, and that is to make the federal government ‘OBEY THE CONSTITUTION.”

What is particularly troubling is the fact that at a time when our country continues to be invaded by millions of illegal aliens, and many of our states, particularly our border states, are struggling to survive under this invasion, the current President of the United States, for the first time in our history, is siding with the foreign invaders against our own citizens.

Rather than helping the states fight this invasion, the current administration puts up billboard-size signs warning American citizens to stay out of the desert in their own country because of the dangers posed by violent foreign drug smugglers other criminals who cross our border at will. Rather than live up to his oath to protect the American people, our president violates his oath and chooses to stand side by side with socialist organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union and LaRaza to defend and protect the illegal alien invaders and the Mexican drug cartels, all at the expense of the American people, particularly in the border states. My fellow citizens, this is the very defifition of Tyranny.

Our own federal government is slowly but surely becoming the enemy of its own citizens because our elected officials and federal judges are completely disregarding the oaths they took to protect and defend the constitution.

I am a member of an organization called the OathKeepers. It is a national organization comprised of active duty and former members of the military and law enforcement who have sworn to honor their oaths to support and defend the US Constitution. We pledge our lives and our sacred honor in the defense of Liberty and the Republic and Our motto is: NOT ON OUR WATCH!.”

That means that we will never stand on the sidelines as our Liberty is under attack, NOT TODAY, NOT TOMORROW, NOT NEXT WEEK, NEVER.

Those of us who have taken this oath at one or more times in our lives, have sworn to continue to stand by that oath to support and defend the Constitution.


We stand for: FREEDOM from the invasion of illegal aliens.

We stand for FREEDOM from cap and trade legislation, and the bailout of international banks, wall street, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Global Warming Scam, the Green Jobs scam and stimulus handouts to political donors and cronys.

We stand for FREEDOM from the collection of racial, ethnic and other data on Americans that is used to divide and separate us into groups of hypheniated Americans. I am not a white American, a black American, an Irish-American or a Latino-American. I AM AN AMERICAN.

We stand for FREEDOM from the increasing attacks on family farms, ranches and small businesses.

We stand for FREEDOM from the destructive international so-called free trade agreements like NAFTA and CAFTA that continue to destroy our manufacturing industry and cost millions of Americans their jobs.

We stand for FREEDOM from the endless cycle of war and the invasion of other countries without legitimate reasons and without the constitutionally required Declaration of War, all for the financial benefit of the military industrial complex.

We stand for FREEDOM from the United Nations, a communist Trojan Horse that is attacking our individual freedoms and our nation sovereignty like a cancer. Not only must the USA get out of the United Nations, but its time to kick the United nations out of the USA

We stand for FREEDOM from the enemies within our own country who push for a socialist 'New World Order' run by crooked politicians, socialist Billionaires and their non-governmental organizations, international bankers and international corporations.

We stand for FREEDOM from a government controlled HealthCare system and mandatory vaccinations.

We stand for FREEDOM from the incesant attacks on our Second Amendment guaranteed rights to possess firearms to defend ourselves.

We stand for FREEDOM from a government controlled education system that is not only in the process of re-writing our history, but from a system that has been dumbed down by design and is more about indoctrinating our children than educating them.

We stand for FREEDOM from the drugging of 6 million of our children every day for the benefit of the pharmaceutical industry.

Let us remember that at critical times in the 235 YEAR history of this great country, certain generations of Americans have been called upon to defend Liberty in its maximum hour of danger. In 1776, our Founders' generation was given that honor and privilege as were the generations of Americans who lived through World War I and World War II.

At these and other critical times in our history, brave Americans have taken an oath and stood as one united force against foreign aggressors and our Liberty was preserved. Today in America, our Liberty is once again under attack. This time, however, the attack is not coming from some foreign power, but rather it is coming from an enemy within; from our own federal government and from those traitorous individuals and special interest groups, who pull the strings of the politicians and the media, like puppet masters from behind a curtain of secrecy, bribery and deception.

Make no mistake; the danger to our Liberty is as real today as it was in 1776, 1917 and 1941.

Our Founders repeatedly warned us of the dangers that a free America would face in the future and that the most serious danger to our Liberty would come from within. They also told us that it is not only an honor and a privilege to defend our Liberty, but that it is also our sacred duty to do so, not just for ourselves but for our children and our children's children.

Just as those brave generations of Americans have done before us, OUR generation must be prepared to stand up, take the oath and join together as one united force to defend Liberty in America.

This is a critical time in our country’s history because our Liberty is once again in mortal danger and it must be defended now!. WE are now the generation that must act and this is OUR time to Stand Up and be counted! If we join together in 2011 and 2012 as one united force to defend Liberty, we can take America back!


Thursday, September 29, 2011

2011-09-29 "Cop Caught Macing "Occupy Wall Street" Protesters a Second Time, NYPD Launches Investigation" by Lauren Kelley
The comically named New York policeman Anthony "Tony" Bologna has now been caught macing #OccupyWallSt protesters without apparent provocation not once, but twice. The Guardian reports that new footage of Officer Bologna macing protesters emerged yesterday [http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/blog/2011/sep/28/occupy-wall-street-anthony-bologna], and that the NYPD is launching two separate investigations into the matter.
Oh, and Score one for Team Bloggers and Activists for getting the NYPD to take Bologna's actions seriously:
[begin extract]
The investigations were announced after bloggers and activists drew attention to video posted online which showed that Bologna fired pepper spray on two occasions last Saturday as officers broke up a protest march through Greenwich Village.
The first footage shows him targeting a group of female protesters who were being penned in by officers on East 12th Street. The latest video shows another incident on the same street, shortly after the first, when he fired more pepper spray towards at least one of the same women, after they were recovering from the first incident.
On both occasions, the officer appears to have violated New York Police Department guidance on how the gas should be used.
In response to the Guardian's appeal to readers to help us reconstruct Saturday's events on East 12th Street, one protester wrote to say that she was sprayed with gas by the officer both times.
The protester, Ashley Drzymala, also sent us a link to this raw footage, which shows - at about the 3:56 mark - the officer spraying protesters as they retreated from the area of West 12th Street where he had used the gas on another group about a minute earlier.
[end extract]

According to Gothamist [http://gothamist.com/2011/09/29/pepper_spraying_cop_gets_death_thre.php], the Civilian Complaint Review Board has received at least 400 complaints about the macings -- enough that "staffers had to come up with a special system for categorizing and processing them."
Unfortunately, the #OccupyWallSt protesters aren't the only people who have received this treatment. It seems that the NYPD has a habit of macing citizens for the wrong reasons (or no reason at all) -- and getting away with it:
[begin extract]
According to recent statistics [http://www.nyc.gov/html/ccrb/html/reports.html], 1722 people complained of being wrongfully pepper-sprayed by New York police officers between 2006 and 2010. Of that number, the civilian review board substantiated just 22 complaints.
[end extract]
Meanwhile, Officer Bologna has reportedly received death threats [http://gothamist.com/2011/09/29/pepper_spraying_cop_gets_death_thre.php] after his personal information was published by hacktivist group Anonymous. In response, the force has assigned Bologna a security detail.
2011-09-29 "Unions Head to Support Occupy Wall Street"
Citing common cause, the Transport Workers Union [http://www.twu.org/international/our_union] - one of the country's largest unions with over 200,000 members - has announced its support for the Occupy Wall Street protests. They will join a Friday rally. Other unions are following suit [http://www.examiner.com/finance-examiner-in-national/wall-street-uprisings-growing-as-major-union-joins-to-support-protestors], with a slew of big NYC unions planning an Oct. 5 rally.

The Village Voice interviewed Transport Workers Union Local 100's spokesman Jim Gannon [http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2011/09/transport_worke.php]:
[begin excerpt]
Why did they join? "Well, actually, the protesters, it's pretty courageous what they're doing," he said, "and it's brought a new public focus in a different way to what we've been saying along. While Wall Street and the banks and the corporations are the ones that caused the mess that's flowed down into the states and cities, it seems there's no shared sacrifice. It's the workers having to sacrifice while the wealthy get away scot-free. It's kind of a natural alliance with the young people and the students -- they're voicing our message, why not join them? On many levels, our workers feel an affinity with the kids. They just seem to be hanging out there getting the crap beaten out of them, and maybe union support will help them out a little bit."
[end excerpt]

Could Unions Help Rebrand Occupy Wall St from a Dirty Hippie Protest to a Populist One? from ANIMALnewyork.com on Vimeo.

2011-09-29 "Inside the Shadow Economy -- A Growing Underworld Bazaar" by Andrew Leonard from "New America Media" with "Salon"
A day laborer waiting on a street corner for a morning's worth of work hacking brush. A sweatshop employer paying less than minimum wage and skimping on overtime. A woman running a day care center out of her apartment. Drug dealers, sex workers, unlicensed street food vendors. A plumber who deals only in cash or a farmer who trades food for help with the harvest.
What do they all have in common? They're part of the "shadow economy." Also known as: the underground economy. Pick an adjective, any adjective: informal, gray, black market, under-the-table, hidden, unobserved. There are many different names for the realm where taxes aren't paid, labor laws are ignored, and cash is king. But on at least one point most observers agree: the shadow economy -- in the U.S. and abroad -- is growing. And that's not healthy. In a shadow economy, workers are often unsafe and ruthlessly exploited, while governments are deprived of crucial revenue -- yet still forced to foot the bill for essential services.
In an era of seemingly permanent high unemployment -- what some call the "new normal" -- the shadow economy is where people end up after having been downsized or forced out of their homes or displaced by globalization. And while the shadow economy does offer opportunities for survival -- and even a modicum of upward mobility -- for desperate people in desperate times, it's also proof that capitalism as we know it just isn't working. Once upon a time, underground economies were seen as a problem for developing nations that hadn't figured out either democracy or how to manage an economy. But now, increasingly, the shadow economy is a developed world problem -- contributing to a growing disenchantment with the political process, and a growing sense that workers are on their own, scrambling for ever smaller pieces of pie at the bottom while those on the top consolidate their gains.
Both the shadow economy's size and speed of growth, however, are uncertain. When a sector of the economy's essential attribute is that it doesn't show up in the numbers collected by government or reported by employers, we're dealing, right off the bat, with an entity that is fundamentally hard to quantify. We don't even know, for sure, what the impact of the Great Recession has been on the shadow economy in the U.S. High unemployment has clearly forced workers to do whatever they can to get by, but it has also resulted in a stark decline in illegal immigration -- which, in the past, has been considered one of the biggest contributing factors to the growth of the shadow economy.
But most of all, we don't know exactly why the shadow economy is growing. On the one hand, conservatives and libertarians see the rise of underground economies as a necessary (and justified) response to high taxes and excessive regulation. The bigger the heavy hand of government, the harder people -- both workers and employers -- will try to escape. The "coercive power of the state," as Friedrich Hayek liked to say, is the enemy of true liberty.
Progressives and labor organizers have a diametrically opposed view: Globalization and deregulation have smashed the traditional employer-employee relationship, they say. In the dog-eat-dog world of global competition, the rules on the books are no longer being enforced and workers everywhere are getting squeezed. That construction worker willing to cut you a discount if you pay cash for your new porch is in part responding to pressures exerted by China and the global triumph of capital over labor. That shantytown bike mechanic hasn't been liberated from the state; he's been cut off from true participation in an economy that will allow him to prosper.
As Peru's Hernando de Soto, one of the first economists to truly appreciate the importance of the shadow economy, has emphasized repeatedly, the real challenge isn't necessarily to remove regulations, but to find ways to legitimize what's already happening, to make it easier for the dispossessed to move out of the shadows.
Watching Washington politicians demagogue about deficits and job creation while they drown the nation in endless partisan squabbling isn't getting us any closer to understanding what's really pushing the growth of the underground economy -- or pointing us towards a possible solution. Horse-race coverage of the latest government shutdown idiocy seems less and less connected to the everyday challenges of everyday lives. "We have to wake up to the world that we live in," says Martha Chen, a lecturer in public policy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government who has studied the informal economy.
And that means paying attention to the street. So today, Salon, in partnership with New America Media, is launching a new series, "Inside the Shadow Economy." The first goal is to get a closer look at the people who make up the shadow economy. Their stories, their lives, will help illustrate some of the larger questions -- why and how this is all happening.
Beyond that, the greater challenge is to figure out what we can do about it. Resurrecting the power of labor in a globalized world is a monumental task -- it is decidedly unclear whether any single nation can do it on its own. But organizing a global worker's movement seems an equally quixotic enterprise. Refocusing government on the dire situation on the ground will require grass roots pressure and the smashing of outdated partisan paradigms. Finding ways to legitimatize the shadow economy while protecting workers from abuses may even demand that the developed world take some lessons from the experience of emerging nations. With economic growth sagging everywhere, it's going to be an uphill battle. But that doesn't mean we should stop looking for solutions, and we'll be exploring potential paths forward in this series.
Because if there's one thing that the stories of the shadow economy do tell us, it's that no matter how dire the situation, people will find a way to make it through the day. Change does happen. It might come from the street, instead of Washington, and it may need encouragement, instead of scorn. But disenfranchised will, eventually, find their voice. The sooner we hear it, and act, the better off we'll all be.

What is the shadow economy?
The standard estimate of the current size of the shadow economy in the United States ranges from around 8-10 percent of total GDP -- in 2010, an amount equal to around $1.4 trillion. In California alone, lawmakers are quick to cite numbers that place the underground economy at anywhere between $60 billion and $150 billion. But the critical issue isn't the overall size, but instead the rate of growth. One influential measurer of the underground economy, Austrian researcher Friedrich Schneider, pegged the U.S. shadow economy at 4 percent of GDP in 1970 and 9 percent in 2000. Others have concluded that the informal economy has been growing at a rate of 5 to 6 percent a year since the early 1990s -- faster than the "regular" economy.
Schneider is one of the more vocal advocates of the view that the size of the shadow economy is correlated with levels of taxation and regulation: "Countries with relatively low tax rates," he writes, "fewer laws and regulations, and a well-established rule of law tend to have smaller shadow economies."
But that doesn't quite jibe with historical trends in the U.S. over the past few decades, observes Pascale Joassart, a professor of geography at the University of California at San Diego and the co-author of a groundbreaking study of the growth of the "informal economy" in Los Angeles.
"The informal economy is growing," says Joassart, "but in the last 20 years, our economy has been deregulated and marginal taxation rates have gone down."
What's really going on, says Joassart, is that there has been "a restructuring of the economy which, in order to promote flexibility and global competitiveness, has led to greater reliance on part-time and contingent labor."
"This includes a large informal sector made up primarily of lower-skilled workers who are required to work (such as former welfare recipients) and immigrants who have limited protections," he says. "I would argue that it is a deregulation of the economy, including a decline in welfare programs and an increase in free trade and global competition, that has led to an increase in informal work in industrialized nations."
That deregulation, says Sara Flock, policy director at the California Federation of Labor, goes hand in hand with a failure to enforce the labor laws currently on the books. Flock acknowledges that one driving force in the growth of the shadow economy has been the desire of employers to avoid profit-cramping requirements like worker's comp, payroll taxes, minimum wages and overtime. But the difference now is that employers can easily get away with doing so, because no one is minding the store.
A study conducted by UCLA researchers in 2010, "Wage Theft and Workplace Violations in Los Angeles," reported that between "1980 and 2007, the number of minimum wage and overtime inspectors declined by 31 percent."
"And that's while the labor force is growing," says Flock. "The labor force grew by 52 percent but enforcement has declined by 31 percent."
"The underground economy has always existed," adds Flock, "and has always preyed on the most vulnerable workers -- immigrants, women, young people, and now increasingly seniors. But what's different now is that there has been a real erosion of the traditional employer-employee relationship. Employers are much more mobile and are using many different tools to make sure that they don't actually directly employ workers."
A selection from the wage theft study makes the point in even stronger terms:
Today, at the start of the twenty-first century, the nation is facing a workplace enforcement crisis, with widespread violations of many long established legal standards. The crisis involves laws dating back to the New Deal era that require employers to pay most workers at least the minimum wage and time-and-a-half for overtime hours and that guarantee employees' right to organize and bring complaints about working conditions. Also violated frequently are more recently established laws that were designed to protect workers' health and safety, laws that require employers to carry workers' compensation insurance in case of on-the-job injury, and laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, race, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, or disability.
High unemployment, unsurprisingly, has also been correlated with a larger informal economy. But what's interesting, says Joassart, is that in the past, the informal economy rose and fell in a cyclical pattern. In a recession, the informal economy would grow, but when the economy returned to health, it would decline. That pattern is no longer visible. Since 1990, the shadow economy keeps growing, irrespective of what's happening in the business cycle.

Welcome to the 21st century! The bottom line: Globalization has substantially shifted the relative power of labor and capital.
"What you have had is a huge labor injection of labor from China and India and all of that," says Martha Chen, "and you haven't had a commensurate injection of capital. So the labor-to-capital ratio is at a point where capital is really in the driver seat."
That's the ideological mathematics that explains both "the new normal" and the shadow economy.
When capital is in the driver's seat, government is no longer enforcing labor laws, and unemployment is high, workers have no leverage. Opportunities for jobs with benefits and good pay decrease, and everyone is forced to scramble for whatever is available. Increasingly, that means work that is completely outside the regulated sector. Work that is found in the shadow economy.
2011-09-29 "House GOP to Cut Pell Grants, Heating Subsidies" by Andrew Taylor from the Associated Press
WASHINGTON — House Republicans have announced plans to cut heating subsidies for the poor, job training and President Barack Obama's "Race to the Top" program providing grants to better-performing schools, as they unveil a massive spending bill for labor, health and education programs.
The controversial GOP measure also seeks to block implementation of Obama's signature health care law, cut off National Public Radio from federal grants and reduce eligibility for Pell Grants to low-income college students.
The $153 billion measure is cut by $4 billion from current levels and is expected to be wrapped into a larger omnibus spending bill this fall or winter that would fund the day-to-day operating budgets of Cabinet agencies.
Negotiations between Republicans controlling the House, the Democratic Senate and the White House are sure to be arduous.
2011-09-29 "Potheads Fare Worse Than Child Rapists in Canadian Crime Bill" by Cathryn Wellner
If you’re contemplating a life of crime in Canada, now is the time to switch from growing marijuana plants to preying on children. If the Conservatives pass their omnibus crime bill, you will get off with a much lighter sentence.
The Province points out, “Under the Tories’ omnibus crime legislation tabled Tuesday, a person growing 201 pot plants in a rental unit would receive a longer mandatory sentence than someone who rapes a toddler or forces a five-year-old to have sex with an animal.”

Politics, Not Safety -
After years of having his crime bills defeated by the opposition, Stephen Harper is on the verge of getting his revenge. Never mind that the crime rate has been steadily dropping. Forget the failed experiment in tougher sentencing in the U.S., where the cost of incarceration is so great even conservatives are calling for reform. Harper promised to get tough on crime, and he plans to keep his word even if the social and economic costs far outweigh the benefits.
Bill C-10, the Safe Streets and Communities Act lumps together nine bills that failed to pass when the Tories were a minority government. Among the omnibus bill’s most contentious measures are those that will strip judges of discretionary power and swell the prison population.
House arrest would be abolished, though it has proven effective for nonviolent offenses. Mandatory minimum sentences would be imposed for drug offenses, including six months for anyone caught growing six or more marijuana plants. And anyone with three offenses will never be eligible for parole.

Does Canada Need This Bill?
Crime in Canada is at its lowest rate since 1973, when the country had only 12 million people. Violent crimes are down. Young people are committing fewer crimes, and even property crimes have dropped. So safety is clearly not the driving force here.
The Tories are also not saying how much the measures will cost, but The Globe and Mail estimates Corrections Canada “will spend more than $450-million this year implementing just one of the Conservative government’s new tough-on-crime measures – the Truth in Sentencing Act – as Canada’s prison system expands to accommodate a rush of new inmates.” This is at a time when Corrections Canada already has a $3 billion budget, prisons are overcrowded and the country’s economy is still vulnerable.
On Tuesday the Tories moved to restrict debate, clearing the way to ram the bill through Parliament without having to put a dollar figure to it or allow for real discussion. The agenda here is politics, not crime, and the impact will reverberate throughout one of the safest countries in the world.
United: Over 700 hundred Continental and United pilots, joined by additional pilots from other Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) carriers, demonstrate in front of Wall Street on Tuesday

2011-09-29 "Occupy Wall Street Protest: 12 Days and Little Sign of Slowing Down" by Nate Rawlings
Nearly two weeks ago, an estimated 3,000 people assembled at Battery Park with the intention of occupying Wall Street. They were an eclectic group, mostly young, some with beards and tattoos, other dressed in shorts and sneakers; a few even wore suits for the occasion. But nearly everyone was angry at what they saw as a culture of out-of-control greed. They didn't succeed — at least not geographically, forgoing Wall Street for nearby Zuccotti Park, just around the corner from Ground Zero.
News outlets put the crowd there at several thousand, but that seemed to overestimate its true numbers. When I visited the park on Sept. 17, I counted backpacks and sleeping bags, trying to differentiate the tourists and casual marchers from those who were in it for the long haul. I came up with about 200 people.
Over the past 12 days, however, those numbers have grown. On a late-night visit to Zuccotti Park on Tuesday, the fecklessness and disorganization reported earlier in the New York Times seemed largely absent [http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/25/nyregion/protesters-are-gunning-for-wall-street-with-faulty-aim.html]. A protest that began in utter dysfunction has given way to a fairly organized movement with a base camp for its most stalwart members, now numbering more than 300 people, who have slept in the park for 12 nights straight–and who say they intend to stay.
Perhaps no incident galvanized the protesters more than their march north to Union Square on Sept. 24. Police arrested nearly 80 people whom they say were blocking traffic, and video of a penned-in female protester being pepper sprayed by a police officer went viral on the web. The protesters have posted the video on their website [https://occupywallst.org/] and a picture of the woman adorns the board at the entrance to the park, at what's now become the groups quasi-official information booth. At small table, posterboards lay out the schedule for the day, which includes marches down to Wall Street for the stock exchange's opening and closing bells, each followed by a "General Assembly" where the various groups gather to discuss their goals, their current status and what might come next.
The park has become a semi-permanent home, complete with a medical station and a distribution point for food and water. The protesters have organized themselves into committees to remove the garbage, roam the camp to enforce a ban on open flames (an evictable offense in the eyes of the NYPD) and engage with the people in the area. A couple of pizza joints, a Burger King and a deli have let the protesters use their bathrooms; some have even donated food. In the middle of the park is a media center where protesters send out Twitter updates and live-stream the latest news on their website. At 1 am Wednesday, more than 3,000 people were sending in questions while a young woman in a yellow poncho answered them on a live feed.
But while "Occupy Wall Street" has become more organized, its demands haven't coalesced into a coherent message. The only thing its various constituent groups appear to have in common is a deep-seated anger at inequality in this country. For them Wall Street symbolizes that unfairness, but the groups have other concerns as well. Many want to redistribute wealth; others want to enlarge government social programs. Some are protesting against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Daniel Levine, a journalism student from upstate New York, said he was taking a stand against the controversial method of natural gas extraction known as hydrofracking in his hometown – but also noted that the practice can bring jobs to economically disadvantaged regions.
Just as it lacks a single message, the "Occupy Wall Street" movement has been defined by the absence of a clear leader. Participants say that is by design, and point to the committees that have sprung up to tend to the daily needs of those camped in Zuccotti Park. It isn't clear that they want a single leader, and many think the movement is better of without one. “It's kind of cool how it's growing organically,” one said. “People just need to give it time and it'll come together.”
Assuming organizers can keep the protest on the good side of the law, all indications are that it will continue for a long time. A sign by the information booth held a wish list: hats, gloves, tarps, and warm clothing. On live streams on the website, organizers answered questions about what supporters could bring or send. If last weekend is any indication, the numbers could swell this Saturday as supporters come in from out of town. For those who eventually leave again, Levine hopes that they take the skills they've learned back to their communities to continue to protest for whatever cause they support. "Every person who's been here more than three days can completely organize a protest in their hometowns," Levine says. "This is the most productive homelessness I've ever seen."

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

2011-09-27 "Longshore workers make a stand for labor" by Jack Heyman
Jack Heyman has worked 45 years in the maritime industry as a seaman and as an Oakland longshoreman.
Longshore workers on the Columbia River caught everyone's attention three weeks ago when they blocked a move by a multinational grain consortium that threatened their union and their jobs. The media berated hundreds of longshoremen "storming" the port of Longview, Wash., and dumping thousands of tons of grain from railroad cars on the track. Most accounts glossed over that in opening its $200 million Export Grain Terminal, St. Louis-based Bunge North America refused to abide by the port's contract to hire workers from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Local 21.
Bunge threw down the gauntlet, then acted shocked when the ILWU resisted. More than 125 longshore workers and their supporters have been arrested, including ILWU International President Bob McEllrath. He was released after police the were surrounded by some 500 angry longshoremen. U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton complained because his anti-picket injunction has been defied, saying he felt like a "paper tiger." The Local 21 union hall proudly displays a banner, "Defend the Picket Line, Defend Free Speech."
Why such a militant struggle to defend jobs? At a time when poverty in America has reached the highest level in 50 years, maritime companies want to eliminate good-paying union jobs. Last year in Philadelphia, Del Monte Fresh Produce Co. went nonunion, violating its agreement with the East Coast International Longshoremen's Association. Now Bunge wants to do the same on the West Coast. It's a threat to all waterfront unions and all workers.
Last February and March, labor supporters occupied the Wisconsin capitol and held marches of more than 100,000 to protest an attack on unions. That electrified workers around the country, but the action was derailed after it became a political football for Democratic Party politicians. So now teachers and other public workers in Wisconsin have no bargaining rights. ILWU pickets proudly wear T-shirts reading "No Wisconsin Here."
This scenario may change. A line has been drawn on the waterfront of this country. Trying to disguise its union-busting as an inter-union squabble, EGT hired Operating Engineers Local 701 to do the longshore work.
That fiction won't wash. Washington and Oregon state AFL-CIO's are supporting ILWU, as is the ILA, pledging "full support." Corporate arrogance could provoke a first-ever shut down of all U.S. ports at once. And Panama Canal pilots, who recently joined the ILWU, as well as the International Dockworkers' Council and the International Transport Workers Federation are also on board.
The American working class, like European workers protesting anti-labor attacks, could awaken. EGT needs to ship the grain to the global market to make its profit. But longshore workers and their supporters aren't backing down.
Just last week, Local 21 President Dan Coffman and a dozen "Women of the Waterfront," members and supporters of the longshore union were arrested for sitting down on the railroad tracks in Longview. As Shelly Porter, a young longshore worker and mother of a young daughter who's been arrested three times (once at night in her home), put it, "We've got no option. Either we defend our jobs or we have nothing."
Longshoremen on both coasts couldn't agree more.

Power to the People! Occupy Wallstreet!

2011-09-27 "Report: 100 New York Police Officers Boycott In Solidarity with Wall Street Protesters" by WashingtonsBlog
Are New York Police Boycotting to Protest Violence?
After New York’s finest brutalized peaceful Wall Street protesters [http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2011/09/police-mace-use-force-on-and-arrest-peaceful-wall-street-protesters.html], rumor has it that police officers are boycotting.
Occupy Wall Street notes: "Today we received unconfirmed reports that over one hundred blue collar police refused to come into work in solidarity with our movement. These numbers will grow. We are the 99 percent. You will not silence us."
But the 1% will certainly try to silence the 99%.
2011-09-27 "The Globalist Empire Strikes Back With Censorship" By Ethan Jacobs, J.D.
Ethan Jacobs holds a Juris Doctor and Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. His passion is researching and writing about important issues to defeat every form of tyranny over the mind of man.
In a telling act of desperation, the failing globalist empire, Google Blogger, completely deleted Activist Post, one of the top alternative news websites, without warning or reason. The elite see that their global fascist world government agenda is falling apart due to the alternative media educating the public. Globalist puppet Hillary Clinton recently told a congressional committee, “We are in an information war and we are losing that war.” [http://tv.globalresearch.ca/2011/03/hillary-clinton-us-losing-information-war-alternative-media]
Each day more people question why we have a private Federal Reserve that creates money out of nothing and exerts Communist-style central economic planning for the benefit of bankers, the 9/11 fable and other false flags, vaccines, fluoridated water, endless wars of military conquest and the absurd war on drugs.
Google is a CIA/NSA front company that collects information on its users and social trends based on Internet traffic [http://www.infowars.com/group-calls-for-hearings-into-googles-ties-to-cia-and-nsa/].
"The CIA’s technology investment operation, In-Q-Tel, and Google are supporting a company that monitors the web in real time. The company, Recorded Future, scans tens of thousands of websites, blogs and Twitter accounts to find imputed relationships between people, organizations, actions and incidents. Recorded Future claims it can utilize this information to predict the future."
Google founder Eric Schmidt attended the 2008 and 2011 Bilderberg meetings, where David Rockefeller and Henry Kissinger most likely gave him his marching orders. 
Google has a history of censoring constitutionally protected political speech and the alternative media. Earlier this year Google-owned YouTube censored a video clip showing Eric Schmidt at the 2011 Bilderberg Group conference [http://www.infowars.com/video-exposing-google-ceo-schmidt-censored-by-you-tube], by removing the “honors” associated with the Alex Jones Channel and preventing the clip from being widely viewed [http://www.infowars.com/you-tube-censors-again-undermining-alex-jones-ranking-by-scrubbing-view-count]. YouTube also has been caught distorting “channel views” and deleting popular documentaries such as The Obama Deception.
During November of 2010, Google’s news aggregator blacklisted Prison Planet and Infowars [http://www.infowars.com/google-blacklists-prison-planet.com] despite the fact that both websites are internationally known and now attract more traffic than many mainstream media websites, while Google-owned YouTube temporarily froze the Alex Jones Channel [http://www.youtube.com/user/TheAlexJonesChannel?blend=1&ob=5] based on a spurious complaint about showing Wikileaks footage that had been carried on hundreds of other YouTube channels for months.
Google’s deletion of Activist Post and acts of censorship build upon the CIA’s Operation Mockingbird [http://www.prisonplanet.com/analysis_louise_01_03_03_mockingbird.html].
Starting in the early days of the Cold War (late 40s), the CIA began a secret project called Operation Mockingbird, with the intent of buying influence behind the scenes at major media outlets and putting reporters on the CIA payroll, which has proven to be a stunning ongoing success. The CIA effort to recruit American news organizations and journalists to become spies and disseminators of propaganda, was headed up by Frank Wisner, Allen Dulles, Richard Helms, and Philip Graham (publisher of The Washington Post).
Media assets will eventually include ABC, NBC, CBS, Time, Newsweek, Associated Press, United Press International (UPI), Reuters, Hearst Newspapers, Scripps-Howard, Copley News Service, etc. and 400 journalists, who have secretly carried out assignments according to documents on file at CIA headquarters, from intelligence-gathering to serving as go-betweens. The CIA had infiltrated the nation's businesses, media, and universities with tens of thousands of on-call operatives by the 1950s. CIA Director Dulles had staffed the CIA almost exclusively with Ivy League graduates, especially from Yale with figures like George Herbert Walker Bush from the "Skull and Crossbones" Society.
The deletion of Activist Post is the progression of White house information czar Cass Sunstein’s policy of speech and thought repression [http://www.prisonplanet.com/obama-czar-wants-mandatory-government-propaganda-on-political-websites.html]. Sunstein, who authored a white paper calling for banning “conspiracy theories,” demanding that websites be mandated by law to link to opposing information or that pop ups containing government propaganda be forcibly included on political blogs.
In a set of proposals designed to counter “dangerous” ideas, Sunstein suggested that the government could, “ban conspiracy theorizing,” or “impose some kind of tax, financial or otherwise, on those who disseminate such theories”. So-called “conspiracy theories that Sunstein said could be subject to government censorship included beliefs held by the vast majority of Americans, such as the notion that the JFK assassination occurred as part of a wider plot. In his white paper, Sunstein also cited the belief that “global warming is a deliberate fraud” as another marginal conspiracy theory to be countered by government censorship.
Sunstein is no entrepreneur when it comes to free speech suppression as his policies are reminiscent of Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels. The ambitions of the Propaganda Ministry were shown by the divisions Goebbels soon established: press, radio, film, theater, music, literature, and publishing. In each of these, a Reichskammer (Reich Chamber) was established, co-opting leading figures from the field to head each Chamber, and requiring them to supervise the purge of Jews, socialists and liberals, as well as practitioners of "degenerate" art forms such as abstract art…Goebbels’ orders were backed by the threat of force.
Control of the arts and media was not just a matter of personnel. Soon the content of every newspaper, book, novel, play, film, broadcast and concert, from the level of nationally-known publishers and orchestras to local newspapers and village choirs, was subject to supervision by the Propaganda Ministry, although a process of self-censorship was soon effectively operating in all these fields. No author could publish, no painter could exhibit, no singer could broadcast, no critic could criticize, unless they were a member of the appropriate Reich Chamber, and membership was conditional on good behavior.
Sunstein relates to the Soviet Union:
"Eastern Bloc information dissemination was controlled directly by each country's Communist party, which controlled the state media, censorship and propaganda organs. State and party ownership of print, television and radio media served as an important manner in which to control information and society in light of Eastern Bloc leaderships viewing even marginal groups of opposition intellectuals as a potential threat to the bases underlying Communist power therein.
During the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they would have otherwise suggested that the sun might not shine on May Day. Under Nicolae Ceau┼čescu in Romania, weather reports were doctored so that the temperatures were not seen to rise above or fall below the levels which dictated that work must stop."
Sunstein’s views are also similar to those of communist China:
"Censorship in the People's Republic of China is implemented or mandated by the Communist Party of China . Censored media include essentially all capable of reaching a wide audience including television, print media, radio, film, theater, text messaging, instant messaging, video games, literature and the Internet. Chinese officials have access to uncensored information via an internal document system. China's Internet censorship is regarded by many as the most pervasive and sophisticated in the world. According to a Harvard study, at least 18,000 websites are blocked from within the country."
Sunstein is not alone in his desire to suppress free speech by censoring the Internet. According to the great-grandson of John D. Rockefeller, nephew of banker David Rockefeller, and former Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller, the Internet represents a serious threat to national security. His belief that the internet is the “number one national hazard” to national security is shared by the former Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell and Obama’s current director Admiral Dennis C. Blair.
Likewise, Senator Joe Lieberman stated, “Right now China, the government, can disconnect parts of its Internet in case of war and we need to have that here too [in the United States].” The Senator’s reference to China is a telling revelation of what the cybersecurity agenda is really all about. China’s vice-like grip over its Internet systems has very little to do with “war” and everything to do with silencing all dissent against the state.
Lieberman himself proved to have the power to shut down websites with a mere phone call, as was underscored when Amazon axed Wikileaks from its servers [http://www.infowars.com/lieberman-has-power-to-shut-down-websites-with-a-phone-call] after being pressured to do so by Lieberman’s Senate Homeland Security Committee.
If the globalists have their way, the light of free speech and the alternative media will be extinguished from the Internet.
In conclusion, the globalists’ agenda is collapsing faster than the debt-based economy due to the alternative media exposing their crimes and informing the public. The elites know they are losing the information battle and are acting out of desperation. That is why they censor the alternative media and why they deleted Activist Post. I am confident that Activist Post will return stronger and better than ever. In the meantime, please continue to share important articles from the alternative media with your friends, family, and contacts. The elites are up against the ropes and with your continued help, their global fascist agenda will soon suffer the long-overdue knockout punch.
2011-09-27 "Young Adults Will Never Recover From Great Recession" by Sam Taxy
In the most recent (alas, current) recession, almost every income group has been hard hit. Recent college graduates, though, may see the rest of their career negatively affected. In response to this year’s ACS report from the Census Bureau [http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/searchresults.xhtml?refresh=t], Harvard economist Richard Freeman declared [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/22/census-recession-young-adults_n_975476.html] that the economic and human capital losses are enough that young people have become another “lost generation,” similar to the generation that lost their young adulthood to World War One.
According to the ACS report, twenty-something Americans have been especially ravaged economically by the recession. Associated Press explains: “Employment among young adults 16-29 was 55.3 percent, compared with 67.3 percent in 2000; it’s the lowest since the end of World War II. Young males who lacked a college degree were most likely to lose jobs due to reduced demand for blue-collar jobs in construction.” Likewise, this age-cohort is the most likely to be living in poverty.
There are lots of reasons why young adults are bearing the brunt of the economic downturn.
First off, there’s been a steep decline in construction jobs, meaning that young adults (especially men) without college degrees are much less likely to find a job. For those that did graduate from college, student loan debt has been exploding over the past decade. Over 2/3 of students take on debt to finish college, with the average among those students being $24,000 [http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/15/how-worrisome-is-student-debt/]. In order to service that debt, twenty-somethings need well-paying jobs shortly after college. Anything short of this means that young adults are forced to choose between paying off onerous debts and living in poverty. Meanwhile, it’s becoming harder for recent grads to find employment, as more experienced workers who have been laid off are competing for the same jobs.
It turns out, though, that even if the economy magically started working again tomorrow morning that the recession would have a lingering malignant impact on young adults. Since most firms aren’t hiring many new entry-level positions, recent graduates seeking to start off their career on the right foot have been forced to take stop-gap jobs unrelated to their prospective career path [http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/01/fashion/recent-college-graduates-wait-for-their-real-careers-to-begin.html?pagewanted=all]. This means that when the economy does (fingers crossed!) pick up again, these young adults will not only be competing amongst themselves, but against more recent college graduates as well for entry-level jobs [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/22/census-recession-young-adults_n_975476.html]. This is expected to depress employment potential and wages for years to come; when quantified, it’s like losing $100,000 each (inflation adjusted) over the course of their lifetimes, even when compared with other age groups that have been hard hit by the recession.
It’s really this last point that is turning American youth into a lost generation. Though every age group is having to make serious sacrifices, Freeman says that only the youth are going to be permanently “scarred” by it. As a recent college grad myself, this analysis hits a bit close to home. I know a lot of people who had to spend weeks and months looking for non-paying internships just so that they could get some experience on their resume. Many of them had outstanding student loan debt and saw their savings disappear within months. It’s all too real that my entire generation will have this lost income hanging over us for the rest of our working careers.
Hearkening back to the first lost generation, famed theater company the Elevator Repair Service has recently opened a new play based on the quintessential novel about the first lost generation, Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises. The New York Times says [http://theater.nytimes.com/2011/09/12/theater/reviews/the-select-the-sun-also-rises-review.html] that the play “exists in what appears to be a state of perpetual and severe intoxication,” not surprising given the source text. It’s ironic that the first lost generation was known for drinking heavily at bars; this one can’t even afford the cover charge.
2011-09-27 "Florida Lt. Gov: “Fight Back” Against Taking God Out of Our Country" by Robin M.
Are you worried that our political leaders are bowing down to scientists to “let them have the stage to push evolution”? If so, you might be afraid that Jesus is under attack in this country, too. Just like Jennifer Carroll.
But Jennifer Carroll isn’t an everyday fire and brimstone preacher, although her speech sounds nearly like a sermon. No, she’s the Lieutenant Governor of Florida under Rick Scott, and she’s speaking at the Faith and Freedom conference portion of the Florida Presidency 5 event last weekend.
Just in case you were wondering what politicians were doing as they attended the conference.
Watch her whole speech from RightwingWatch [http://www.rightwingwatch.org/]:

Monday, September 26, 2011

2011-09-26 "The $41 Million Question"
The report about the Fascists who were appointed to reduce Federal spending and the banks who bribed them is here:
Members of the Joint Committee on Deficit Reduction have received $41 million from the financial sector during their time in Congress, according to a new report from Public Campaign and National People’s Action, “Wall Street and the Supercommittee: The $41 Million Question.” At least 27 current or former aides for the “supercommittee” members have lobbied on behalf of financial firms.
“Wall Street bought the deregulation that led to our economic collapse and the American public has paid the price,” said Nick Nyhart, president and CEO of Public Campaign. “The supercommittee should not give Wall Street and big banks another free ride because of their campaign cash.”
Tax reforms such as closing the “Hedge Fund Loophole” and instituting a Financial Speculation Tax can generate over a trillion dollars that can be used for housing, jobs, and repairing our nations’ frayed social safety net, according to National People’s Action.
“Wall Street and the big banks are trying to buy their way out of paying their fair share. We know where the money is to rebuild our economy and it’s not in the pockets of school children or in Grandma’s pension – it’s on Wall Street,” said George Goehl, executive director of National People’s Action.
In addition to summary data, the report provides individual details for each member of the committee, including their campaign contributions from financial interests, former aides working for the industry, and fundraising activity.
* The 12 members of the supercommittee have received at least $41 million from the finance, insurance, and real estate (FIRE) sector during their time in Congress.
8 They have received nearly $900,000 from three of the top American banks—JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo
*Since 2000, the industry has spent over $4 billion lobbying elected officials.
* Nearly 30 former aides to the 12 members work as lobbyists for financial industry interests.
The report concludes, “The decisions this supercommittee makes in the coming months will show whether Wall Street influence guides policymakers or the hardships faced by everyday Americans are taken into account. Regular people didn’t create toxic assets or ship jobs overseas. Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed a political system that allows those who caused the economic disruption we see on Main Street in town after town and city after city to buy their way out of responsibility.”
In August, Public Campaign and National People’s Action signed a letter with two-dozen organizations urging the supercommittee members to give up fundraising and provide complete transparency of their meetings with lobbyists, donors, and corporate CEOs. So far, five members of the committee have announced that they would slow or curtail fundraising.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

"Can Only Democrats Engage in Wars of Aggression?"

2011-09-24 by Lawrence Samuels:
Can Democrats support war without getting shot down in a hail of flak by the media and progressives? That question has proven to be a thorny issue, but more evidence keeps accumulating to suggest that this is indeed the case. One example surfaced in the Monterey Peninsula area of California this month.
Libertarians for Peace, a member of the Peace Coalition of Monterey County, introduced the “Give it Back Resolution” in September 2011. It called upon President Obama to return his Nobel Peace Prize because his foreign policies have “continued old wars and engaged in new ones.” It was a simple and clear one-sentence resolution, but few took it that way.
In the last few years, the dirty secret behind the peace movement is the emergence of a double standard regarding which political party can conduct foreign wars of aggression. For a number of reasons, it appears that Democratic Presidents can go to war, escalate troop strength, engage in torture, rendition, illegal wiretapping or harassment of whistleblowers and so forth, but Republican Presidents can’t employ the same policies. The “Give it Back Resolution” brought this controversy to the forefront.
When the resolution was first presented, a murmur of support rippled through the air. Many of the members seemed pleased over such a resolution. But within days of its submission, the chairperson of the Peace Coalition began to show his true colors. He objected to the resolution, arguing that it would be “demeaning” to the President and “frivolous.”
Of course, nobody in the Peace Coalition would have opposed this resolution if President Bush had been the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. In fact, I would wager that almost everybody in the peace movement would have lined up to sign a petition demanding that Bush give back any peace award immediately. That is a given. But do most peace activists have an unbiased eye when becoming involved in party politics? Do they favor “principle over party,” or do they play favorites and look the other way when Obama acts like Bush on steroids? I was almost afraid to ask that question.
After spending years in the Peace Coalition, organizing dozens of peace rallies and “impeach Bush and Cheney” demonstrations, I was sure I would get a good deal of support for the resolution, even if it failed to gain the required 100 percent consensus. I had a feeling that most peace activists could see beyond party policies; that it did not matter which group of politicians were behaving like war-mongers. A number of them told me that principles did indeed trump party politics, and that they were not beholden to the Democratic Party. Something was wrong somewhere, because the participants failed to live up to their claims of nonalignment.
The first roadblock erected against the resolution was a procedural maneuver. The chairman refused to put the resolution on the next meeting’s agenda. The excuse: all 20 member organizations that compose the Peace Coalition had to attend the meeting. This was a silly argument since the coalition has frequently passed all sorts of endorsements for rallies, speeches and events with barely a quorum. This was a bogus requirement. Finally, this conflict was resolved through the diplomatic skills of David Henderson. The resolution was begrudgingly put on the agenda a day or so before the meeting.
And the results: disappointing. Not a single peace organization attending the meeting gave a thumbs-up recommendation. There was no vote. The Veterans for Peace and Green Party immediately came out against it. The National Lawyers Guild said that they might agree to it if some minor wording changes were made. The local Quaker organization abstained. The other peace group leaders just sat silently and watched. The resolution never had a chance.
In retrospect, I suppose I was testing the Peace Coalition to see if my suspicions were correct. I had heard a number of complaints that the Peace Coalition had a strong bias towards the Democratic Party. Since the election of President Obama, the coalition had only sponsored three peace rallies compared to a dozen or more during the Bush administration. Of the three anti-war rallies sponsored, two were spearheaded by Libertarians for Peace. I had to take charge of one because nobody else would volunteer. As this lack of activity became more apparent, some of the more libertarian peace activists began to wonder if the local Peace Coalition was actually putting “party before principles,” worried that if anti-war leaders protested too loudly against President Obama’s administration, he might lose reelection.
After the failure of my resolution became apparent, the chairperson told me to contact each organization separately, and try to convince them of my resolution’s merit. I asked for a roll call vote so as to have an official record of who favored or opposed the resolution—since a number of members had remained silent. That request was denied. I had a feeling that the chairman wanted no record of who opposed the resolution since it might someday become an embarrassment.
It was now apparent that many of the Peace Coalition members were willing to let President Obama get away with whatever pro-war policies he wanted to pursue. This prejudice is in essence saying that Democrats are exempted from normal anti-war criticism, and that wars of aggression by them are permissible. I wish this partisan favoritism were not true, but actions speak louder than words.
The lack of support for this resolution has answered my questions. A large percentage of peace activists are indeed beholden to partisan politics. And this is a condemning indictment of those who proclaim to support the values of peace and non-violence.
L.K. Samuels is the co-chairperson of Libertarians for Peace of Monterey County along with David R. Henderson.  He is editor and contributing author of Facets of Liberty: A Libertarian Primer and a forthcoming book, In Defense of Chaos: the Chaology of Politics, Economics and Human Action. His website www.Freedom1776.com.
G-20 protests.
America says Welcome!

Friday, September 23, 2011

2011-09-23 "A Billionaires' Coup in the US: The debt deal will hurt the poorest Americans, convinced by Fox and the Tea Party to act against their own welfare" by George Monbiot from "The London Guardian"
There are two ways of cutting a deficit: raising taxes or reducing spending. Raising taxes means taking money from the rich. Cutting spending means taking money from the poor. Not in all cases of course: some taxation is regressive; some state spending takes money from ordinary citizens and gives it to banks, arms companies, oil barons and farmers. But in most (Illustration by Daniel Pudles)
cases the state transfers wealth from rich to poor, while tax cuts shift it from poor to rich.
So the rich, in a nominal democracy, have a struggle on their hands. Somehow they must persuade the other 99% to vote against their own interests: to shrink the state, supporting spending cuts rather than tax rises. In the US they appear to be succeeding.
Partly as a result of the Bush tax cuts of 2001, 2003 and 2005 (shamefully extended by Barack Obama), taxation of the wealthy, in Obama's words, "is at its lowest level in half a century". The consequence of such regressive policies is a level of inequality unknown in other developed nations. As the Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz points out, in the past 10 years the income of the top 1% has risen by 18%, while that of blue-collar male workers has fallen by 12%.
The deal being thrashed out in Congress as this article goes to press seeks only to cut state spending. As the former Republican senator Alan Simpson says: "The little guy is going to be cremated." That means more economic decline, which means a bigger deficit. It's insane. But how did it happen?
The immediate reason is that Republican members of Congress supported by the Tea Party movement won't budge. But this explains nothing. The Tea Party movement mostly consists of people who have been harmed by tax cuts for the rich and spending cuts for the poor and middle. Why would they mobilise against their own welfare? You can understand what is happening in Washington only if you remember what everyone seems to have forgotten: how this movement began.
On Sunday the Observer claimed that "the Tea Party rose out of anger over the scale of federal spending, and in particular in bailing out the banks". This is what its members claim. It's nonsense.
The movement started with Rick Santelli's call on CNBC for a tea party of city traders to dump securities in Lake Michigan, in protest at Obama's plan to "subsidise the losers". In other words, it was a demand for a financiers' mobilisation against the bailout of their victims: people losing their homes. On the same day, a group called Americans for Prosperity (AFP) set up a Tea Party Facebook page and started organising Tea Party events. The movement, whose programme is still lavishly supported by AFP, took off from there.
So who or what is Americans for Prosperity? It was founded and is funded by Charles and David Koch. They run what they call "the biggest company you've never heard of", and between them they are worth $43bn. Koch Industries is a massive oil, gas, minerals, timber and chemicals company. In the past 15 years the brothers have poured at least $85m into lobby groups arguing for lower taxes for the rich and weaker regulations for industry. The groups and politicians the Kochs fund also lobby to destroy collective bargaining, to stop laws reducing carbon emissions, to stymie healthcare reform and to hobble attempts to control the banks. During the 2010 election cycle, AFP spent $45m supporting its favoured candidates.
But the Kochs' greatest political triumph is the creation of the Tea Party movement. Taki Oldham's film (Astro)Turf Wars shows Tea Party organisers reporting back to David Koch at their 2009 Defending the Dream summit, explaining the events and protests they've started with AFP help. "Five years ago," he tells them, "my brother Charles and I provided the funds to start Americans for Prosperity. It's beyond my wildest dreams how AFP has grown into this enormous organisation."
AFP mobilised the anger of people who found their conditions of life declining, and channelled it into a campaign to make them worse. Tea Party campaigners take to the streets to demand less tax for billionaires and worse health, education and social insurance for themselves.
Are they stupid? No. They have been misled by another instrument of corporate power: the media. The movement has been relentlessly promoted by Fox News, which belongs to a more familiar billionaire. Like the Kochs, Rupert Murdoch aims to misrepresent the democratic choices we face, in order to persuade us to vote against our own interests and in favour of his.
What's taking place in Congress right now is a kind of political coup. A handful of billionaires have shoved a spanner into the legislative process. Through the candidates they have bought and the movement that supports them, they are now breaking and reshaping the system to serve their interests. We knew this once, but now we've forgotten. What hope do we have of resisting a force we won't even see?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The CIA was created during 1947 by lawyers and military planners who were under contract by monopolist corporations to protect the Free Market.
It's only purpose was not to uphold "human rights" but to uphold "corporate rights" to make a profit despite the nationalist tendencies of the people of the world... it's crimes matches the crimes of the old Soviet Union.
The idea that the CIA could ever be humanitarian is forever undermined by it's history and by its associations with the Fascist monopoly capitalists, and if the CIA were to investigate something like global warming only to discover that the monopoly corporations are the leading perpetraitors of global warming, then the investigation will, of course, be stopped and its findings made a state-secret...

2011-09-22 "CIA Says Global-Warming Intelligence Is ‘Classified’" by David Kravets from "Wired" magazine
Two years ago, the Central Intelligence Agency announced it was creating a center to analyze the geopolitical ramifications of “phenomena such as desertification, rising sea levels, population shifts and heightened competition for natural resources.”
But whatever work the Center on Climate Change and National Security has done remains secret.
In response to National Security Archive [http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/] scholar Jeffrey Richelson’s Freedom of Information Act request, the CIA said all of its work is “classified.”
“We completed a thorough search for records responsive to your request and located material that we determined is currently and properly classified and must be denied in its entirety,” [http://www.fas.org/sgp/news/2011/09/cia091311.pdf] (.pdf) Susan Viscuso, the agency’s information and privacy coordinator, wrote Richelson.
Richelson, in a Thursday telephone interview from Los Angeles, said the CIA has not released anything about its climate change research, other than its initial press release [https://www.cia.gov/news-information/press-releases-statements/center-on-climate-change-and-national-security.html] announcing the center’s founding.
“As far as I know, they have not released any of their products or anything else,” Richelson said. “There was a statement announcing its creation and that has been pretty much it.”
Steven Aftergood, who directs the Federation of American Scientists Project on Government Secrecy, blasted the CIA’s response to Richelson.
The CIA’s position, he said, means all “the center’s work is classified and there is not even a single study, or a single passage in a single study, that could be released without damage to national security. That’s a familiar song, and it became tiresome long ago.” [http://www.fas.org/blog/secrecy/2011/09/cia_climate.html]
When the center was announced, the CIA said it would become “a powerful asset recognized throughout our government, and beyond, for its knowledge and insight.” [https://www.cia.gov/news-information/press-releases-statements/center-on-climate-change-and-national-security.html]
President Barack Obama also promised a transparent administration, which he might not be living up to. For instance, in 2009, the Obama administration played the national security card to hide details of the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement that is still being negotiated across the globe [http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/03/obama-declares/].
What’s more, consider the 33-page report the White House issued Friday, “The Obama Administration’s Commitment to Open Government.” [http://www.fas.org/sgp/obama/status.pdf] (pdf)
Aftergood said the report “downplays or overlooks many of the administration’s principal achievements in reducing inappropriate secrecy. At the same time, it fails to acknowledge the major defects of the openness program to date. And so it presents a muddled picture of the state of open government, while providing a poor guide to future policy.”
In any case, the Center for Climate Change and National Security might not continue much longer “because of pressure for intelligence budget cuts and resistance from conservative lawmakers.” [http://voices.washingtonpost.com/spy-talk/2011/01/cias_climate-change_unit_faces.html]
"United States Fascism Watch" does not support either of the two State Parties, believing that both of them are corrupt and controlled by Fascists.
However, the Republican Party is literally Fascist [with the Democrat Party as the controlled loyal "liberal" opposition] who have no moral regard for the majority of humanity.
In the following article, you will read how the Republican Party views the concept of "Class War".

2011-09-22 "Warren's 'Class Warfare' Video Goes Viral, GOP Demands Harvard Fire Her; A Video Supporting Taxing the Wealthy Gets Traction on YouTube" by Saul Relative from "Yahoo! Contributor Network"
Elizabeth Warren, the former Obama administration special adviser regarding consumer affairs and finance law, is well known in Massachusetts and the surrounding New England area and among those well versed in activities concerning the middle class. But aside from political wonks, policy advisors, and those familiar with government and finance law, Warren's name may not be all that familiar. With the posting of a video on YouTube scoffing at "class warfare," that seems about to change.
On September 13, Warren announced her candidacy for the Massachusetts U. S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Scott Brown, who surprisingly took the traditionally Democratic seat long held by Sen. Edward "Ted" Kennedy. On September 18, a video went up on YouTube showing the Harvard law professor speaking at a small gathering about the debt crisis, "class warfare," and fair taxation. The video went viral and Warren seems to be on the verge of singlehandedly eliminating the GOP's basic argument against taxing the wealthy and re-establishing the Bush tax breaks -- that it is a form of class warfare.
And Republicans are wishing they had never heard of her at all.
"I hear all this, you know, 'Well, this is class warfare, this is whatever,'" Warren says in the video, which was shot in August when Warren was exploring the idea of a Senate bid. "No. There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own -- nobody."
Warren, who has been a tireless consumer rights advocate and worked in an advisory capacity on the massive Wall Street reform legislation known as Frank-Dodd, is seen in the video enumerating the trillions of dollars squandered by the Bush administration on tax cuts for the wealthy, wasteful wars, and a revamping of the health care drug program that cost senior citizens more and only seemed to benefit pharmaceutical companies. She then makes it clear that the idea that allowing the Bush tax breaks to expire and calling it "class warfare" is nonsensical in that those who have prospered did so with the help of taxes, workers, protection, and infrastructural programs made possible by the taxes paid by all.
"You built a factory out there - good for you," she goes on. "But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along."
Warren's message is likely to resonate well in Massachusetts -- as it does with most Americans -- and already seems to be doing so. The law professor has gained a lead in the polls, 46 percent to Brown's 43 percent, according to Public Policy Polling.
But the GOP, who blocked her appointment to the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in Washington (an appointment now to be filled by Robert Cordray, upon Congressional approval), are not idly standing by and just allowing Warren to take Brown's Senate seat. On Friday, USA Today reported that they entered a little "class warfare" of their own and went after her by attempting to have Warren removed from her current job of teaching as a Harvard law professor [http://content.usatoday.com/communities/onpolitics/post/2011/09/elizabeth-warren-senate-massachusetts-harvard-salary-/1?csp=obinsite].
According to the GOP, Harvard must ask for Warren's resignation because it is a tax-exempt institution, which means it cannot "participate in or intervene in" any campaign for political office. But Warren's staff dismisses the idea of termination, noting that the former elementary school teacher "... takes her responsibilities to her students and the university seriously and she will fulfill her commitments in line with all relevant policies."
Harvard's policy on political activities [http://www.ogc.harvard.edu/documents/PoliticalActivities_GuidelinesforFacultyandStaff.pdf] states that individuals can become involved in politics as long as they do nothing political "within the context of their employment" or with Harvard's "real or apparent authorization."

2011-09-22 "Elizabeth Warren is Right: Class Warfare Tactic a Joke" by K.C. Dermody from "Yahoo! Contributor Network"
Is anyone else getting tired of hearing the Republicans whine about the same old thing? They just don't get it, but there is a strong woman in Massachusetts who is telling them like it is. That woman is Elizabeth Warren, and she is currently running for Ted Kennedy's old Senate seat.
Warren is a former White House financial reform adviser, and though she has never run for political office before, the woman is brilliant politically. While campaigning, she answered the critics of President Obama's plan to slightly increase taxes on the wealthiest Americans.
According to the Huffington Post, Warren remarked [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/chris-weigant/elizabeth-warren-senate_b_974923.html]:
"You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for; you hired workers the rest of us paid to educate; you were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn't have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory, and hire someone to protect against this, because of the work the rest of us did. Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along."
Most of the GOP would like to see the deficit reduction plan cut into social programs, including education, and the Republicans seem to have no clue that most people in the United States use social programs, whether they are Democrat, Republican, or independent.
Do they not realize our children need to be educated so there are competent adults who can take over the jobs that are needed to run our country in each generation? We need teachers, doctors, nurses, policeman, accountants, electrical engineers, and construction workers. From the jobs that are considered menial to the jobs requiring high-level skills, conservatives need them just as much as the rest of us.
Congressman John Fleming , R.-La., complained about the tax hike early this week. Fleming whines that he can't afford to live on $400,000 after he meets all of his expenses and feeds his family. He is the shining example of how many of the Republicans in office think.
Warren is the strong woman we've needed to explain, simply, that this is wrong. Our country was built by people who work together to make things happen, not by people who live in glass houses.
The other day I saw an elderly man get out of his vehicle and slowly walk with a cane into the store. The van he drove had a bumper sticker that read, "GET RID OF OBAMA AND HIS SOCIALISM" in big bold letters. I sat for a minute as I digested the scene. The man is most likely on Medicare. If there was ever a socialist program, that would be it. I wanted to ask him if he would be OK if his Medicare was canceled, but I just shook my head and drove away.
If I lived in Massachusetts, I would be voting for Elizabeth Warren, and I hope she continues to voice her commonsense opinions and challenge the Republican accusations against our current administration.
2011-09-21 "Troy Davis - In America, innocence doesn't matter!"
In America, innocence doesn't matter! Our legal system is corrupt! Almost everyone on Death Row is poor, found guilty because they had underfunded, inexperienced and often incompetent public financed legal representation. Once found guilty, corruption by police, prosecutors and the courts is often ignored and the legal system and laws make it nearly impossible to demonstrate one’s innocence.
Outrageous! Troy Davis is scheduled for execution September 21! The Georgia Board of Pardons & Paroles denied a final clemency– a final chance to prevent Troy Davis from being executed. 7 of 9 witnesses have recanted their testimony. Witnesses have stated in sworn affidavits that they were pressured or coerced by police into testifying or signing statements against Troy Davis. 3 of the jurors have stated they no longer believe Davis is guilty.
Even more outrageous! One of the two witnesses who has not recanted his testimony is Sylvester "Red" Coles — the principle alternative suspect, according to the defense, against whom there is new evidence implicating him as the gunman. Nine individuals have signed affidavits implicating Sylvester Coles.
It should be a crime when law enforcement, lawyers, and court officials deliberately lie, coerce witnesses, tamper with evidence, & withhold evidence to convict others of a crime. These crimes have been justified as "He has probably done other bad things, anyway" or “We need to find someone guilty even it is not the right person” or “We need to remove a political troublemaker by framing him”.
* Is This One of America's Worst Miscarriages of Justice? [http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2011/09/21]
* A Circle of Prayer for Troy Davis—and the Country That Would Kill Him [http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/21-4]
* Tomorrow, Georgia Murders Troy Davis [http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/20-11]
* The Extraordinary Movement to Save Troy Davis [http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/19-9]
* Troy Davis and the Politics of Death [http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/14]
* How to Help Troy Davis [http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/13-9]
* The Troy Davis Case: Will America Execute Another Innocent?[http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/09/09-11]

2011-09-22 "Troy Davis Protestors take to the Streets: "This is what Democracy Looks like" by By Amity Paye from "Amsterdam News"
What started as a twitter post just minutes after Troy Davis' execution became a full fledged, unreported revolt in the streets of New York City today.
"Raise your hand, raise your fist, it is time to resist," they chanted.
At 5 p.m. 100-200 people gathered at Union Square for a rally in the name of Troy Davis, who was on death row for over two decades for the murder of police officer Mark MacPhail and was executed September 21 at 11:08pm in Savannah, Georgia.
In a town hall-style gathering people from all walks of life, and many different organizations voiced their reasons for supporting this battle.
Lawrence Haynes, a former death row prisoner and anti-death penalty activist said, "Troy Davis up until his death was the poster child for reasonable doubt...the whole criminal justice system is rotten to the core, and we are not talking reform we are talking abolition. We want to abolish the execution system. It is unfair, it is unjust, it is racist." To the black community in attendance Haynes said, "We got our own voice and we need to raise it up."
With goals ranging from the end of the death penalty to the end of all racism in America, protestors took the microphone, raising their voices up. One speaker remembered Sean Bell, saying his death should also be remembered in this movement, while yet another reminded people of Mumia Abu Jamal, a former member of the Black Panther Party who has been on death row since 1981.
A representative from the International Socialist Organization said, "they'd rather kill him (Troy Davis) than admit that they made a mistake, but one thing they're not counting on is our anger, our strength." The next speaker, Sean Baucom, called on the young people in the crowd to draw on that strength saying, "Instead of using social media for pointless updates, use it to organize and be aware."
And that was exactly what happened when another speaker called for everyone to march. The group began moving from Union Square towards the West Village. They marched west on 14th Street, then turned south onto 5th Avenue to pass Washington Square Park, where New York University students were literally jumping out of their first floor windows and tweeting their friends to join in on the march.
"The system is racist, they killed troy Davis," they chanted.
Along the way police continuously tried to stop the march by creating a row of motorcycles to block the way, but protestors kept finding detours around them. From there the growing crowd marched onto McDougal Street, with patrons at its bustling bars taking pictures and joining the crowd. On Spring and Thompson the crowd clashed with a much stronger police force, about 50 cops with tear gas dispensers in hand and paddy wagons. Protestors and police fought a couple of times.
One man was thrown to the ground, provoking the comment to police, "you're all Black, how can you do this to your people," from one protestor. But the frightened crowd did not stay to hear a response and ran away from each fight onto the sidewalks. After the commotion died down, protestors and police stood sizing each other up for a few minutes before the march turned back uptown and east towards Broadway.
Once it reached Broadway the crowd had grown to well over 1000 and filled the entire street, stopping traffic completely as it marched with a new goal to join the protestors at Wall Street who have been protesting for the past week against the financial system that they say favors the rich over the poor.
"The people united will never be defeated," they chanted.
Once at Wall Street there was some confusion as to what the protestors should do next, and some stayed at Zuccotti Park while others marched on to Wall and Broad Streets .
Following a procession of drummers the protest on Wall and Broad Streets took on a half party feel in the smokey streats in a way only the Y generation can enjoy social change. The war-like drums continued as protestors were cornered between police barricades and began to clash with police when they tried to break through. At least one person was arrested in this interaction before police asked everyone to leave and began blocking off groups of protestors, splitting them up and pushing them back to Zuccotti Park.
Once at the park there was a "general assembly" where the reunited group tried to determine, democratically of course, what to do next. One member of the crowd yelled out "mike check mike check," and it was repeated by all around.
"Barricades are actually for our safety," said one protestor.
"Barricades are actually for our safety," repeated the crowd.
"Mike check mike check," said a different voice from across the crowd.
"Mike check mike check."
"I'm a little confused."
"I'm a little confused."
"And I think I'm not alone."
"And I think I'm not alone."
"Mike check mike check."
"Mike check mike check."
"If you want to march."
"If you want to march."
"Lets go to the First Precinct."
"Lets go to the First Precinct."
One group decided to stay fast at the park and continue the protests they started earlier this week while the other decided to march to the First Precinct to attempt to retrieve two CUNY students, Freddy Bastonna and Augustine Castro, and two members of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM, Brandon King and Joe Jordan, who according to police, had been arrested for resisting arrest.
"Let our brothers go," they chanted.
The contingent of about 50 young people was met by police in riot gear waiting for them outside the First Precinct. Faced with this threat the group, which included members of MXGM, sat down on the pavement and began to chant even louder, attempting to send hope and support to their imprisoned friends.
The police, affronted by this peaceful gesture, announced that the protestors would be arrested for obstructing traffic. Staying peaceful, yet again, the group pressed itself against the wall of the First Precinct. "You're obstructing traffic now," said a voice in the crowd and the seemingly surprised police pressed against the wall too. An awkward man in a grey suit walked on by.
"We are men and women and they are beasts," said Kilo Vasquez among a group of friends who were leading the protest. "we are free and they (pointing to police) are slaves."
Members of the group including Domingo Estevez and Lamont Wale made impassioned speeches about solidarity and sticking by in times of need. The group chanted outside of the First Precinct for about an hour, sitting on the pavement surrounded by police, before voting to retreat back to Zuccotti Park under renewed threat of mass arrest.
"Mike check mike check,"
"Mike check mike check"
"Some people have changed their vote, we don't want to risk losing the momentum we have gained today," said Domingo Estevez, making the difficult decision to leave his close friends in jail in order to maintain support for the movement.
"This is what democracy looks like," they chanted.
Various groups have called for post-protest meetings, to continue the activism and organize collectively. The Zuccotti Park protest continues its live-in stay on Wall Street. The International Socialist Organization will be holding a meeting, "why they murdered Troy Davis, racism, capitalism and the injustice system." on Wednesday September 28 at 6:30 p.m. at Saint Mary's church in Harlem. Members of The Malcolm X Grassroots Movement said they will also be announcing meetings in the wake of these protests via their Facebook page.

"Message from Martina and Troy" by Lily Mae Hughes
Lily Mae Hughes works with the Campaign to End the Death Penalty. She can be reached at lilymae30@hotmail.com.
I just wanted to take a moment to let people know that yesterday evening I spoke with Martina Correia, Troy’s sister and champion.
Despite being ill, Martina has been able to be with Troy over the last few days and was able to attend the clemency hearing for him. Her doctor worked closely with her to make it possible for her to leave the hospital to be with Troy and her family.
When we were talking about how her doctors were helping, I thought of the call for the medical staff at the hospital to refuse to carry out the execution. She said her doctor is against the death penalty and fully supports her – now that is what doctors should be doing!
We discussed the case and as she says – IT’S NOT OVER! They are going to the courts for a stay and will try to take it all the way to the Supreme Court. She also stressed the call to the Savannah DA – despite what he says, he can request that the judge withdraw the death warrant, and she said people should keep up the pressure on him.
We talked a little about the clemency meeting last Monday. She described how during the court ordered hearing last year, the DA from the original trial took to the stand and acted like he had amnesia – he kept saying that the case was over 20 years old and he couldn’t remember details about it. But at the clemency hearing on Monday this same DA got up and suddenly remembered all about the case again – how they had done this and that investigation and done everything right.
The family was shocked that the clemency board could deny Troy with so much evidence that that was presented showing his innocence.
We talked about what the victim’s family has been saying in the media – and she stressed that for their part, Troy’s family has always expressed sympathy to Mark MacPhail’s family and tried to show them how Troy’s family has been victimized by this ordeal.
Martina and her family visited with Troy yesterday and she said they are so heartened by the outpouring of support for Troy. Martina said that they are amazed at how people all over the world are speaking out because they are reading about the case on their own and seeing that it is a travesty of justice.
Troy told her to let people know that he hopes everyone will keep fighting. Again, IT ISN’T OVER! Troy intends to fight all the way and so should we. He also said that no matter what happens, he wants people to keep in mind that it’s not just about him – he hopes people will continue to fight until the death penalty is finally abolished.
Martina told me to please convey a thank you to the CEDP for everything we are doing. I told her that we loved her very much and to please give our love to Troy and let him know that we will be fighting for him now and always.

2011-09-21 "Troy Davis execution delayed while US supreme court considers stay; Execution of death row inmate delayed temporarily as US supreme court intervenes to consider whether to issue a stay" by Ed Pilkington from "guardian.co.uk"

The execution of Troy Davis was delayed temporarily by the US supreme court on Wednesday night in a dramatic intervention just as he was due to be put to death by lethal injection.
The last-minute decision caused confusion outside the prison in Jackson, Georgia, where family, supporters and civil rights campaigners broke into celebration as they believed the court had granted Davis a stay of execution.
But it quickly emerged that the delay was only temporary, while the justices considered whether to issue a stay.
Until that moment it seemed almost certain that Davis would be executed, as the Georgia supreme court had rejected a last-ditch appeal by Davis's lawyers over the 1989 murder of off-duty policeman Mark MacPhail, for which Davis had been sentenced to death despite overwhelming evidence that the conviction is unreliable.
A Butts County superior court judge had also declined to stop the execution.
Davis's attorneys had filed an appeal challenging ballistics evidence linking Davis to the crime, and eyewitness testimony identifying Davis as the killer.
The White House declined to comment on the case, saying "it is not appropriate for the president of the United States to weigh in on specific cases".
At the maximum security prison in Jackson where the execution is scheduled to take place, busloads of Troy Davis supporters from his home town of Savannah came in to register their anger and despair at what they all agree is the planned judicial killing of an innocent man.
Edward Dubose, a leader of the Georgia branch of the NAACP, said it was not an execution, but a "murder".
The protest heard from Martina Correia, Davis's eldest sister, who delivered a statement from about 20 family members gathered around her. She was heavily critical of what she described as the defiance of the state of Georgia and its inability to admit that it had made a mistake.
She pointed out that the state's parole board had vowed in 2007 that no execution would take place if there was any doubt. "Every year there is more and more doubt yet still the state pushes for an execution," she said.
Correia, who has cancer, struggled to her feet in honour of her brother, just a few hours from his probable death. But she exhorted people not to give up.
"If you can get millions of people to stand up against this you can end the death penalty. We shouldn't have to live in a state that executes people when there's doubt."
Dubose gave an account of a 30-minute conversation he had with Davis on death row on Tuesday night. "Troy wanted me to let you know – keep the faith. The fight is bigger than him."
Dubose said that whether the execution went ahead or not, the fight would continue. He said Davis wants his case to set an example "that the death penalty in this country needs to end. They call it execution; we call it murder."
Hundreds of people gathered outside the prison many wearing t-shirts that said: "I am Troy Davis". The activist Al Sharpton said: "What is facing execution tonight is not just the body of Troy Davis, but the spirit of due justice in the state of Georgia."
Larry Coz, the executive director of Amnesty in the US, that has led the international campaign for clemency, said demonstrations were happening outside US embassies in France, Mali, Hong Kong, Peru, Germany and the UK.
"We will not stop fighting until we live in a world where no state thinks it can kill innocent people."
After winning three delays since 2007, Davis lost his most realistic chance at last-minute clemency this week when the Georgia pardons board denied his request despite serious doubts about his guilt.
Some witnesses who testified against Davis at trial later recanted, and others who did not testify came forward to say another man did it. But a federal judge dismissed those accounts as "largely smoke and mirrors" after a hearing Davis was granted last year to argue for a new trial, which he did not win.
Davis refused a last meal. He planned to spend his final hours meeting with friends, family and supporters.
Davis has received support from hundreds of thousands of people, including a former FBI director, former president Jimmy Carter and Pope Benedict XVI.
In Europe, where the planned execution has drawn widespread criticism, politicians and activists were making a last-minute appeal to the state of Georgia to refrain from executing Davis. Amnesty International and other groups planned a protest outside the US embassy in Paris later on Wednesday and Amnesty also called a vigil outside the embassy in London.
Parliamentarians and government ministers from the Council of Europe, the EU's human rights watchdog, called for Davis's sentence to be commuted. Renate Wohlwend of the council's parliamentary assembly said that "to carry out this irrevocable act now would be a terrible mistake which could lead to a tragic injustice".
The US supreme court gave him an unusual opportunity to prove his innocence last year, but his attorneys failed to convince a judge he didn't do it.
State and federal courts have repeatedly upheld his conviction.
Prosecutors have no doubt they charged the right person, and MacPhail's family lobbied the pardons board Monday to reject Davis's clemency appeal.
The board refused to stop the execution a day later.
"He has had ample time to prove his innocence," said MacPhail's widow, Joan MacPhail-Harris. "And he is not innocent."
Spencer Lawton, the district attorney who secured Davis's conviction in 1991, said he was embarrassed for the judicial system that the execution has taken so long.
"What we have had is a manufactured appearance of doubt which has taken on the quality of legitimate doubt itself. And all of it is exquisitely unfair," said Lawton, who retired as Chatham County's head prosecutor in 2008.
"The good news is we live in a civilized society where questions like this are decided based on fact in open and transparent courts of law, and not on street corners."
Davis supporters said they will push the pardons board to reconsider his case.
They also asked Savannah prosecutors to block the execution, although Chatham County district attorney Larry Chisolm said in a statement he was powerless to withdraw an execution order for Davis issued by a state superior court judge.
"We appreciate the outpouring of interest in this case; however, this matter is beyond our control," Chisolm said.