Sunday, January 20, 2008

Truest statement of the week

"The woman is an idiot, an ahisotrical idiot, who is having an argument with Gloria Steinem -- when she finally gets to anything resembling an actual issue -- that is an argument with Betty Friedan. Dumb Ass Professor, learn your history, you dumb disgrace. Steinem was the one pushing sisterhood of all, races and sexuality, Betty Friedan was the one running from both and she did nothing but push middle-class, White women. Steinem regularly toured as a part of a team and did so in order that the Black feminist experience would be and could be heard not as a sidenote but front and center in the feminism debate. Steinem is not the one you have an argument with and there is no excuse for your shameful ignorance on feminism except that you are not one. You also say Steinem wrote an 'op-ed' when she wrote a column -- one more indication of how lacking your pathetic education has been. As for your laughable column you reference, it should have resulted in dumb threats. I am the one who led the argument at this site for the closing of the comments and the comments were closed off when I was insulted by 'Blue Dog Democrats' who haunted the site. I was insulted and degraded both for my gender and my race. It wasn't one or the other, it was both. You seem highly ignorant of that. If you want sympathy for death threats, you've come to the wrong community. Ava and C.I. have received threats of being gutted with knives for TV reviews -- for TV reviews -- and Betty had to step away from her e-mails due to the fact that her humor site was resulting in so many e-mails. You don't know anything and you're nothing but a woman making herself pathetic to prop up a man who is not Black, he is bi-racial. He has played the race card and you lie about that. He is a War Hawk and you lie about that. You are either the most uneducated woman put on a television as a professor or you are a liar. Regardless you are a disgrace and you need to learn a little history before you speak in public again. Whites should also be offended by your remarks and, were I a White who sent my child to Princeton, I would be on the phone complaining to the president of your university about your characterization of students where you teach. You are pathetic, and you've been working on your latest bad book -- I read your first, cut & paste journalism at its best passed off as an exploration -- throughout 2007. Focus on finishing that bad book and spare us all the embarrassment of flaunting your ignorance in public over the airwaves. My comment to Amy Goodman: I want a discussion on gender. I want women in the studio. I want to see as many races as possible and I want women there to discuss women, not to act as help-mates and cheerleaders for men."

-- Community member Keesha calling out Melissa Harris-Lacewell's nonsense and the embarrassment that was Democracy Now! last Monday.

A Note to Our Readers

Hey --
Sunday, Sunday.

Here's who participated on this edition:

The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Jess, Ty, Ava and Jim,
Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude,
Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man,
C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review,
Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills),
Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix,
Mike of Mikey Likes It!,
Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz,
Ruth of Ruth's Report,
and Wally of The Daily Jot

And Dallas who hunted down links and was a sounding board to all. Thank you.

Here's what we've got.

Truest statement of the week -- If you read that and think, "Yeah!" Great. If you read it and think, "Well Betty should have gone a Truest II," we agree with you. Betty's attitude is she has already gotten attention for her statements at length and she has her own site. She said she wanted Keesha to "stand in the spotlight" and get the deserved attention.

Editorial: Kumbaya -- Jess didn't participate on this. He's with his family and participated on some features by phone. This week, we didn't have an editorial and were exhausted. Ty pointed out we still hadn't written about "Kumbaya" and Dona and I said, "Let's make it the editorial." Ty heard about the song's history in passing and asked C.I. about it? C.I. said, "Yes, that's correct, it was one of the anthems of the Civil Rights Movement." Ty pointed out how this song that was being trashed and distorted by the left and right. He and C.I. started doing research for a feature. For at least three weeks, we've postponed and postponed that. We didn't really go into their notes and notes and notes. They can tell you everything about it. Ty, furious that the anthem is being robbed of its historical significance and mocked, was the leader on this piece.

TV: Democracy Sometimes? -- Ava and C.I. Need we say more? This is brilliant, amazing and will even make you laugh. Ava points out, "When we do entertainment, we don't have to write epics." That is true. But while the networks suffer from a writers strike, we all benefit from Ava and C.I.'s commentaries. We all support the striking writers who have every right to be paid for their work. But I will always see the strike as the time I was proven right! From the start, I've asked them to tackle 'news' and news programs. When they would review one, they would then immediately go back to an entertainment program because, as Ava notes, "We're always 'serious' and 'professional' to outsiders when we're covering public affairs and news programming. That's a biased opinion and one that undercuts and devalues the work we're trying to do." Agreed. But look how great the commentaries on news programs have been. Talks are supposed to start next week and Ava and C.I.'s reaction is one of relief. (That's not their saying, "Let it end!" They're in it for the long haul. C.I. notes they may do PBS next week and, if so, will be regional because they've been passed an episode that airs in one markets -- only one as far as they know -- next Friday. The cover note indicates someone's selling the war.) But I will always see this period as the period where I was vindicated. For how many weeks now, they've covered these 'news' programs and look at what they've examined, what they've revealed and how many amazingly written pieces, how many epics they've done. (C.I.'s looking at the note on the public affairs program and already has a funny joke about it, about the host's fake voice.) It's been amazing. And this one stands up proudly among their best.

Roundtable -- Jess didn't participate on this. He noted the roundtables go on forever. This is a time constrained roundtable and C.I. notes: "The point I never got to was that the Green Party needs to have a transcript up after the Feb. 2nd debate. I talk around it but I never got to that point." It's a strong roundtable and we semi-managed to stay to a strict schedule for it.

The Truth About Gloria -- When the undereducated don't know realities, you might think the Katha Pollitts could help them out -- but what woman has Katha Pollitt ever helped out who didn't have the initials "K.P."? A lot of lies went up this month. A lot of people lied because they were stupid, some lied because they wanted to. We could care less: They lied.

Talking with Isaiah -- As promised, we interviewed Isaiah. This was the problem feature. (Jess participated, but that's not why.) Putting in the comics took forever. Flickr was so damn slow. Finally, Dona said, "Let's put things up out of order." So we did, just to get stuff up. We thank Isaiah for his time and for allowing us to re-run his comics.

Memo to Cindy Sheehan -- If a debate is scheduled, look for another memo since we know what they'll try to use against Cindy Sheehan (which C.I. explained they would months ago and we didn't note it then and won't now). They think, if they have to debate (which they don't think they will), they have the perfect "comment" to make that will make people recoil from Cindy. It won't. And we've got the perfect response to it (which will make Pelosi look foolish).

Hillary wins Nevada, The Nation magazine spins & sobs -- Our short feature this edition. We should have had more.

Highlights -- Mike, Kat, Betty, Wally, Elaine, Cedric and Rebecca wrote this and selected the highlights, we thank them.

That's it. We'll see you next week.

-- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.

Editorial: Kumbaya

Meet Carmen Van Kerckhove who runs a blog called Racialious and took part in the attacks on Gloria Steinem last week. Carms brags about being the"co-founder and president of New Demographic, an anti-racism training company." Maybe Carm needs to get her own house in order?

January 4th, Colin posted this to her site ("Friday Links - Procrastinate Until It's Time to Go Home"): "Dirty tactics: They work. Hillary’s got to come back, I expect to see more of what we saw from her campaign earlier; happy Kumbaya talk from Hillary and the dirty smack talk, innuendo and rumors from the aides and Bill." Hey, Carm, anti-racist trainer, you see the problem? Probably not. But then Carmen Van Kerchkhove hasn't given any indication that she knows history or much of anything at all.

All The Mud Flap Gals need to check their sites (we have, it's common throughout) but Carmen Van Kerchkhove asserts that she's paid for anti-racism training.

What is "Kumbaya"? According to the likes of Mike Papantonio on Air America Radio after John Kerry lost the election (while bragging that there was going to be a recount and they had a jet waiting), it's something the 'peacenicks' do.

You see that a lot from the right and it may or may not be surprising.

But it is suprising when Carmen and the other Mud Flap Gals, who wanted to claim that "woman" wasn't inclusive and that it rendered women of color invisible, allow "Kumbaya" to be treated as a joke on their sites and never bother to correct it.

When "Kumbaya" is wrongly identified with the peace movement during Vietnam, who's being rendered invisible?

Along with "We Shall Overcome," "Kumbaya" is a song of the Civil Rights Movement. It existed prior to then, but it was adopted and a part of marches, rallies and meetings.

The mocking of this song popularized by the Civil Rights Movement strips it of its place in history and ignores the power of the Civil Rights Movement. That's the movement that popularized it. That's the movement that made it a nationally known song by all people.

The right-wing demonized it in real time, so it's no surprise they continue to. That the so-called left joins in is shameful. Is the Civil Rights Movement a joke to you? Is ignorance your excuse?

None of the Mud Flap Gals had excuses for Gloria Steinem when they rushed in to misread her and then claim she wasn't being inclusive.

So we won't offer our do-nothings of the net any excuses.

We'll just note "Kumbaya" has a glorious history, that it spoke for and to the struggle for a world where racism didn't exist, and that the same faux-diversity crowd that embraces their homophobic and xenophobic candidate (South Carolina rally in October, "Punjab") plays dumb or either is dumb about history.

It's no excuse. One of the songs of the Civil Rights Movement has been turned into a punchline and there's no excuse for the left to assist in that. There's no excuse, after the heavy drama this month, for any of the Mud Flap Gals to allow "Kumbaya" to be used derisively; however, they've all done that. We checked.

As Betty says, "Save your soul, it's too late for your self-respect."

TV: Democracy Sometimes?

"Welcome to Democracy Now!, the war and peace report," is more or less how Amy Goodman starts each broadcast after the program's theme music plays. The theme isn't "Love Is All Around," but maybe it should be? Maybe our modern day Mary Richards should, instead of tossing her hat into the air at the end of the theme music, just kiss a poster of Barack Obama like Laverne would kiss the poster of the Beatles after she and Shirley moved out west?
Throughout 2007, Goodman regularly featured guests who would praise Barack Obama only to stress that they weren't supporting him, that they hadn't decided whom they were supporting. They'd make that claim even if they'd already written a check to the Obama campaign. Did Goodman know? We were willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.

Then something happened last Monday. Goodman threw Gloria Steinem under the bus and that was disgusting as were attempts to change her program to Geraldo! but what really should have stood out was whom Goodman invited on to tear into Steinem: Melissa Harris-Lacewell.

Harris-Lacewell was on last Monday as an Obama supporter and a pit-bull but it's the former that we found most interesting. The week prior, Harris-Lacewell had been on as a professor. Just an objective professor offering her take on the 2008 campaigns.

Billed as just a professor, Harris-Lacewell managed to sell her candidate, "I was in Nashua at Barack Obama's really packed speech. And we got there about two hours early and stood in line. I had my five-year-old daughter with me, and she stood in line that whole time. Along with me was lots of other older people who were using canes, young people, infants. And it was an incredibly moving and powerful experience. And also, again, just sort of--it was a cross between, you know, the 'I Have a Dream' speech and a high school football pep rally. It was a bizarre, but really kind of exciting mixture."


Pretty strong words for someone who wasn't vested in the Obama campaign. But, of course, Harris-Lacewell was vested in the campaign at that time. And, thing is, Amy Goodman damn well knew it.

Goodman, who likes to play Last Journalist Standing, allowed a known Obama supporter to come on the show and praise Obama through the roof and Goodman never felt the need to tell her audience that Harris-Lacewell was not, in fact, an objective observer but someone who had traveled to many states to see her candidate speak.

Democracy Now! boasts of being the largest grassroots media collaboration in the country. As part of that reach, it's aired on NPR and PBS stations around the country. NPR is supposed to follow basic journalism guidelines and, in fact, has their policy in writing: "Independence and Integrity II: The Updated Ethics Guide for Public Radio Journalism." Democracy Now!'s actions with regards to Melissa Harris-Lacewell are in violation of the guidelines.

Listeners have a right to know, especially when someone's praising a candidate through the roof, that the person is supporting that candidate and working for the candidate's campaign as Harris-Lacewell was. Again, Goodman knew Harris-Lacewell was supporting Obama. She knew it before Harris-Lacewell ever appeared on the show. She knew when she appeared on Jesse Jackson's radio program with Harris-Lacewell. But for reasons not explained, Goodman elected to present Harris-Lacewell as just a professor and, even when Harris-Lacewell was waxing on about her candidate of choice, Goodman never felt the need to tell listeners that Harris-Lacewell was supporting Barack Obama and campaigning for him.

We've asked friends at NPR about that and they all agree it is a major breach of journalism ethics. They note that NPR doesn't distribute the program (they were unaware of the fact that NPR provides a link to the program at their website) and it's picked up by individual stations. Are NPR stations governed by the policy? That's where it gets sticky. As one explained, "In the best possible of worlds, the answer is 'yes' and, yes, that would mean that no NPR station would carry that program as a result of the Harris-Lacewell issue alone."

Yeah, that is what it should mean.

Goodman's turned her program over to Bambi Love. She pretends that's not the case but it is reality. Two Fridays ago, Juan Gonzalez (co-host in name -- and that's not meant as an insult to Gonzalez) wrote a column entitled "I smell Barack Obama baloney." His columns are published in The New York Daily News and are regularly noted by Goodman. For some strange reason, even with him "co-hosting" the Friday, January 11th broadcast (his column was published that morning), Goodman gave no "shout out" to the column. (She did manage to make time to note she'd be appearing in Vermont that night.) Last Friday, a non-Obama column resulted (as it nearly always does) in a "shout out" from Goodman.

It goes to pattern.

One of the patterns is that Michael Eric Dyson, Cornell West and assorted others can be brought on as the sole guest and sing the praises of Bambi.

Journalist Glen Ford (Black Agenda Report) appeared on the January 9th broadcast this year. Finally, someone with serious doubts about Obama was brought on. Ford wasn't allowed to share his observations and investigations with Goodman, instead he was pitted against Michael Eric Dyson.

That's really curious.

On May 31, 2007, The Nation's Ari Berman was brought on to discuss his magazine's latest slam piece on Hillary Clinton; however, Berman wasn't 'balanced' with a pro-Hillary guest. Nor was any statement made to the effect of, "We attempted to get a response from the Clinton campaign."

That really is the pattern.

On January 2nd, Robert Parry got to act to crazy on radio, TV and online. Based on Bill Clinton, Parry -- one-time journalist -- was able to 'predict' what Hillary Clinton would do as president and none of it was favorable. Who was Parry paired with?

No one. Nor was any statement made about attempting to get a response from the Clinton campaign.

On January 3rd, Goodman interviewed Allan Nairn and Kelley Beaucar Vlahos allegedly about the advisers working for the presidential candidates. Beaucar Vlahos is a conservative so we'll mainly focus on the embarrassment that was Nairn. But note, Goodman wants to start with Hillary and brings in both guests for that. Then Goodman decides it's time for Obama and she shuts Beaucar Vlahos out of the discussion. She'll move on to John Edwards (tossed to Nairn) and wait until both candidates have been discussed at length before she'll ask Beaucar Vlahos "would you like to add to any of the advisers Allan just talked about? And then we'll move on to the Republicans." After Beaucar Vlahos notes that they are all the same and the immense money that they all have, Goodman will put forth the lie that Obama gets huge amounts of monies from the grassroots (Goodman regularly cites The New York Times, she's aware of their article about Obama calling t-shirt, bumper stickers, and other sales "donations" to create the impression of small donors and she should also damn well be aware of the huge amounts of monies he's receiving from Big Business). She'll toss to Nairn to praise the alleged miracle of small donors and Nairn will get off this howler:

He actually doesn't need to finance his campaign, to go to the hedge funds, to go to Wall Street. But he does anyway. And he does, I think, because if he doesn't, they wouldn't trust him. They might think that he's on the wrong team, and they might start attacking him. He is someone who, in terms of the money he needs for his campaign, he could afford to come out for single-payer healthcare, for example, but he doesn't. He doesn't need money from the health insurance industry, that's wasting several percentage points of the American GDP in a way that no other industrial rich country in the world does, yet he chooses not to do that, because he doesn't want to be attacked by those corporations.

Nairn is (illogically and with no basis in reality) arguing that, yes, Obama does take big money but he only does so because, if he didn't, big money would attack him. It's a laughable 'theory' and a generous one -- one that's not extended to other candidates.

But Bambi always gets a pass on Democracy Now! Hillary always gets a slam. That has to do with who is booked and who isn't. We spoke with several Hillary supporters who have appeared on the show in the past and asked, "What's the deal? You're sick of Amy?" No, "the deal" is that they're not being asked to appear on the show. Why do they think that is? They all argue that Goodman has an agenda and that is to promote Obama. (Two say that if Hillary gets the nomination and then they're asked to appear they'll beg off.)

Here's how it goes -- and everyone knows it -- in terms of booking: If Barack Obama is your first choice, you can get a solo guest spot. If Barack Obama is your second choice but John Edwards is your first choice, you stand a good chance of a solo or joint appearence. If you're supporting Hillary, the only way you're getting on is if Goodman's booking a supporter of Edwards (known supporter) and one of Obama's (ditto) for the same segment -- in which case, she'll toss a bone to the Hillary supporters.

People should be examining whom Goodman books.

Last week, she booked Kevin Alexander Gray. That January 15th segment was interesting for what it didn't go into.

Barack Obama put known homophobes on stage in South Carolina last October. Some gay groups protested ahead of time. Goodman never noted it. Homophobes went on to spew their homophobia from the stage of this Barack Obama campaign event. Still Amy Goodman didn't note it. "We got what we wanted," crowed the Bambi campaign in their only public statement and, you know this already, it never got noted on Democracy Now!

In the January issue of The Progressive, Kevin Alexander Gray contributes an article he co-wrote with Marshall Derks. The article, "Obama's Big Gay and Black Problem," was posted online at many websites. Despite the article now appearing in print in this month's The Progressive, Goodman never asked about it last week -- while speaking to its co-author. Is homophobia not an issue in Goodman's world? Is it not as important as racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination?

Considering how rarely LBGT issues make it onto the program, Goodman apparently doesn't think it's an issue. Even when a Democrat candidate uses homophobia to stir up hatred in the hopes of turning out voters, Goodman doesn't find it 'newsworthy.' But she's really not interested in gender either. Though program after program throughout 2007 and 2008 addressed race and race only (and the race was always African-American which has led to a huge outcry in the Bay Area about the silence on Asian-Americans), gender issues in the US was never judged as important enough for a segment in 2007.

Some may be suprised that they never noticed that. Others, especially those who read Aura Bogado's "Hustling the Left" (ZNet) will most likely be nodding their heads because it's not all that surprising when a woman (Goodman) who thinks H**tler is the place to publish also isn't interested in the lives of women.

Bogado rightly called out the booking style of the program by noting that human scum (the publisher of H**tler) was allowed to be the only guest for a lengthy segment and to paint himself and his trashy magazine as the last bastion of democracy. When should-have-been-expected complaints came in on that garbage passed off as 'news,' Goodman's response was a 'debate' between two women. As Bogado noted, "Democracy Now attempted to have these women argue over the issue of pornography -- while two weeks earlier the program featured a longer interview with a pornographer, unchallenged." The piece of trash magazine (which we're not spelling in full, no) is not just a skin magazine in the tradition of Hugh Hefner's skin mags, it's a magazine that regularly traffics in violence aimed at women. Again, Goodman felt comfortable publishing in that magazine and might still be were it not for the women like Bogado who had enough self-respect to say, "No, that's not right."

Last Monday, it was again time to pit woman-against-woman and the thing there is that Goodman led Gloria Steinem to believe she was coming on for a discussion. It wasn't a discussion. It was an attack from Bambi supporter Melissa Harris-Lacewell, finally outed that day as a Bambi supporter to the Democracy Now! audience.

"Melissa Harris-Lacewell is a Barack Obama supporter," declared Goodman, something she wasn't able to put into words the week prior when it was time to sell Bambi yet again. Melissa Harris-Lacewell, so eager to lie the week prior and pass herself off as objective and not vested in any campaign, quickly brags about "the work that I've done on the Obama campaign" -- work she didn't feel people needed to know about when she was giving him high marks for the speech she 'just happened' to catch in New Hampshire.

When an alleged news show goe after Gloria, it's not pretty. Harris-Lacewell and Goodman did their Obama-Edwards tag-team act very well . . . if trash TV is what you expect from 'independent' media.

Unmarried Melissa got off one insult after another at married women and we're not really sure that's the way to shore up Bambi's support. For instance, she declared, the Clinton campaign has "consistently used ways of thinking about her as Bill Clinton's wife. You cannot have it both ways. You cannot both claim this sort of role as independent woman making a stand on questions of feminism and claim that your experience begins as First Lady of Arkansas." Actually, we'd argue Clinton's "experience begins" long before that and includes her Congressional work on Watergate.

Harris-Lacewell also got in an insult at Princeton's students by referring to them as "privileged white students" -- we're told that 42% of the current students were rendered invisible in that false remark and that the biggest complaints are coming in from alumni. But grasp that she apparently doesn't think a woman who is married can be independent or that if she is married she must make no mention of it if she wants to be seen as independent. Professor Melissa wanted everyone to know she's not married. We really didn't think marriage was an issue and had no concern about Professor Melissa's marital status but, apparently, when that's all you've got to present yourself as "independent" you go to the well on it and then some.

Remember, married women across the country, the professor thinks you're either "independent" or an appendage. "You can't have it both ways," she's insisting.

We find it hard to believe she's an associate professor of anything with her stream of insults and distortions. There was her puzzling remark that "white women moved into the workforce, much of that caretaking work did not go to white men who sort of took up and helped out, but it fell on women of color--African American women, immigrant women--who stepped in to do much of the domestic labor and childcare provision, so that white women could in fact become a part of the workforce." Is that meant to disrespect domestic work -- paid or unpaid? Is it meant to disrespect working women if the work they do is another person's household? It certainly sounds like it. And where are her citations? We think it's cute the way she works in "immigrant women" (apparently not worthy of a race in her race-based remarks) and it's pretty much necessary because if you're going to talk about domestic work done by women of color it isn't true that African-American women were brought in for White women who worked. African-American women doing domestic work, in the last century, largely worked in homes where the White woman did not work. But maybe when you're churning out 'books' on pop culture, you really don't know your history?

For the record, women in the workforce, all women, have done a variety of jobs and they've done them very well. Some may choose to turn their noses at them -- possibly from an academic perch you have to look down on others? -- but women who have done paid domestic work have worked harder than many others and deserve respect -- a fact not implied or stated in Harris-Lacewell's laughable rant. (For the record, we both grew up in homes with live-in help.)

Apparently thinking she was on Springer and forgetting she was an alleged academic, Harris-Lacewell made statements about how "I'm sitting here in my black womanhood body". We're not really sure what that had to do with anything. Maybe she was afraid listeners would think she was a disembodied voice? Or maybe they'd think she only existed from the neck up?

If anyone was wondering if her body was all there, we're pretty sure they were wondering if her brain was intact as she spewed one laughable remark after another such as when she asserted "Barack Obama is getting death threats, basically lyinching threats on him and his family . . ."

Hold the phone, E.T.

Barack Obama is getting lynching threats?

If he is (big if), we'd assume he was laughing them off. When people take out political figures in this country, they don't "lynch" them. We checked with the Obama campaign. They said there had been no lynching threats they were aware of and one friend with the campaign even laughed at the idea. When we told him it was stated on a 'news' program, he laughed even harder indicating that, though academia appears shaky for Harris-Lacewell, a stand-up career may be in the wings.

We had to wonder what Harris-Lacewell has to offer any student when she can't even respond to a comment accurately. Gloria Steinem makes comments about women in the segment, about all women, and then specifically noting White women and African-American women and Harris-Lacewell starts foaming at the mouth about "this is a bizarre reading of history, this notion of sort of African American men somehow standing over and above white women." Steinem said no such thing (check the transcript) and Harris-Lacewell seemed to be confessing to some cognition problem or maybe just an inability to hear.

Or maybe she's just drunk so much Bambi Kool-Aid she can't think straight. That would certainly explain her focus on (slamming of?) White women in New Hampshire whom she felt Obama "remains alien to" because "it's just very difficult for them to see themselves in him." We thought he was a candidate, not a mirror. Harris-Lacewell declared, "But there was a whole new group of voters, mostly women of Hillary Clinton’s own generation, white women of Hillary Clinton's own generation, who did show up at the polls and vote--cast a vote for Hillary Clinton. And that’s what put her over the top." Does anyone else catch what a crack-pot the woman is?

If not, take this statement, "So I think it’s good news for the Obama campaign, although it does continue to indicate the ways in which white women's particular race and gender position can be of major benefit to them when running against an African American man." Associate 'professor' Harris-Lacewell sure seems to know a lot about White women voters in New Hampshire. She doesn't, however, appear to grasp that they didn't just "turn out," they were already in New Hampshire which is over 90% White. They were always going to "show up at the polls" because there are so very many of them in New Hampshire.

If she believes, as she implies throughout her Geraldo theatrics, White women can only identify with White women, our reply to her is: You're working for the campaign and do you really think getting the support of White women voters is done by continually stripping Obama's mother out of the story?

Obama's mother was one of those White women Harris-Lacewell seems to have a problem with. Probably one of those second-wave feminists that Professor Melissa just knows were holding everyone back. See, despite Harris-Lacewell's repeated use of the term of "Black" to describe Obama, he is the product of an interracial union and he is bi-racial.

On Bill Moyers last year, Harris-Lacewell 'explained' that anyone today who might have been a slave before the end of slavery in this country was "Black" in her book. Again, she's an allegedly educated woman (reading her books will not shore that claim up). One wonders if her screaming rant against Gloria Steinem wasn't in some way her screaming rant at Obama's mother, a White woman, for being White?

That's an issue Harris-Lacewell and Goodman didn't explore. Surprising considering all the rage Harris-Lacewell was tossing at White women. She was more interested in plugging a bad column she wrote and saying "I received death threats myself." Myself?

We've received death threats. Should we add "ourselves"?

We kind of think the sentence doesn't require it but Professor Melissa appears to believe it does -- as if people might think, without "myself" in there, that she was getting the death threats that were intended for Jonah Goldberg?

We've received death threats. In January 2005, we were working on these reviews with Jim, Dona, Ty and Jess (at Jim's insistance that TV be covered) and then in February, it was turned over (piled on?) us. We kept truck-trucking along with no problems. Then Jim announced in a note that the reviews were just written by us. Suddenly death threats started coming in. If Professor Melissa thinks she's got some ugly e-mails for discussing Obama, she might try questioning whether Pretty White Boys can act -- she'd know from death threats then. Call out the White, White world of Moronic Mars and all the nut-jobs show up. But, pay attention Professor Melissa, it's a given when you put something out there. Someone is going to be unhinged and send you a threatening e-mail. Probably many threatening e-mails. It's not the end of the world. Life does go on.

It even goes on, Professor Melissa, when you hop on your high horse and declare, "Well, there was a person who put that out as a possibility, and that was Lonnie Guinier." No, it wasn't "Lonnie Guinier." It was "Lani Guinier." Again, we had to ask, this woman teaches at a college?

If it seems like we're dwelling on the one interview, we are. There's a reason for that. Last week a feature ran here ("Revolutionary broadcast") that we didn't want to participate in. One of the most depressing things at the end of that week was when we were being provided by friends with examples of how the show is tilted to Obama and we'd both denied that Goodman did that knowingly. On Thursday, we had been informed of Harris-Lacewell and given proof that Goodman was aware that the 'professor' was both supporting and campaining for Obama. It was a big blow. We had repeatedly agreed there was a pattern but argued that Goodman didn't know. Finding out that she did know and that she would put on someone from the Barack campaign and allow her to rave about her candidate without ever telling the audiences that the woman campaigned for and supported Obama was very depressing.

So we really didn't participate in that feature last week in terms of DN! We focused on other things (after having attempted to derail the feature) and we really weren't planning to ever go into it. It's a huge disappointment. But then came the set-up of Steinem and that was our last straw.

Even as bad as what Goodman did before was, she's a woman, she's someone struggling in independent media and we'd intended to avoid calling her out. But that's not really doing women a favor and, honestly, we wonder if we had included Melissa Harris-Lacewell's appearance in our "TV: The Surreal Life stages comeback!," would she have been allowed to throw her hissy fit last Monday on the show?

That's guilt we'll carry.

But we refuse to be Amy Goodman's sin eater. Her sins are her own.

She repeatedly loves to single The New York Times out for "the sins of omission." But she's repeatedly demonstrated she committs her own sins of omission with regards to both whom she books (and how she bills them) and what she addresses.

When Kevin Alexander Gray was on last week, it was incumbent upon her to address the issue of homophobia. She took a pass because it's not something the Obama campaign wants addressed. It's really amazing how far she'll go to cover up for Obama.

You saw it all last week in the bookings, if you paid attention. Hugh Jackson was brought on to trash Hillary. He was a journalist. But he's not really just a journalist. An objective journalist doesn't write posts titled "Hillary's hearing voices," for instance. This is the man who, in November of last year, wrote, " Which is to say the Las Vegas debate was not just a case of Clinton winning ugly. It also embodied the promise of her presidency." But somehow he showed up on Democracy Now! last Thursday as just an objective, disinterested journalist. Again, to be booked these days, Hillary Hatred is a must.

It's why a Hillary clip (such as the LBJ and MLK remarks that were a non-event but psuedo journalists, including Goodman, attempted to turn them into one -- see this essay by Bill Moyers for some reality) will never just be played in the headlines of the program, it will repeat later in the program. It's why Gloria Steinem was asked on Monday about the illegal war and Hillary's position. That happened on January 4th as well, in an alleged roundtable, where Danny Glover (supporting Edwards) was asked about the illegal war and Ellen Chesler (supporting Clinton) was asked about the illegal war. Wayne Ford (supporting Bambi) was never asked.

Barack Obama gave a speech calling it a "dumb" war before it started. He got into the US Senate and repeatedly voted for it. He told The New York Times in 2004 -- and The New Yorker in 2006 -- that he didn't know how he would have voted on the Iraq resolution if he'd been in the Senate in 2002. But Goodman's not been interested in that.

There is the standard for all candidates and then there is the Barack-standard which is no standard at all -- as we noted last week in a parody ("Democracy For Who! with your hosts Ava and C.I."). His guests are never presented with clips to respond to, never asked about his changing position on the illegal war, never pressed on the issue of homophobia, . . . It's a long list. They just get to insist he's a saint. When Goodman asks a supporter what issue Obama is for that she supports, the woman's unable to give an answer and Goodman moves quickly along.

And wants to be considered a reporter.

And wants to regularly criticize Big Media.

For, of all things, lack of standards and omissions.

Here's an omission she should consider: Her lack of coverage on the Green Party. Though Cynthia McKinney's declared her run for the Green Party's presidential nomination and though that required leaving the Democratic Party, Goodman hasn't seen fit to book McKinney -- the same Goodman who plugged Democratic McKinney constantly, even when the guest wasn't McKinney. Last Sunday, the Green Party held their first debate and Goodman covered it on Monday . . . in headlines. Contrast that with Wednesday's show which was turned over to one candidate. The candidate was Dennis Kucinich. Kucinich was 'shut out' by NBC -- Kucinich's own version doesn't always include that he was invited, so whatever -- and that was more important than a Green debate. One Democratic candidate -- who already 'gave' his supporters to Obama in Iowa (and revealed he's not running a real campaign) wasn't given airtime?

But, thing is, none of the Greens were on NBC, MSNBC, ABC, CBS or any other MSM outlet. So "going to where the silences are" was doing so for one man while all the candidates running for the Green Party nomination could be dispensed with in a headline?

Maybe they'll get some face time in October of this year, the way they did in 2004? Or if Ralph Nader decides to run, the program will explore whether or not Nader should run and call that Green Party coverage -- as they did in 2004?

Dennis Kucinich didn't get to go on NBC and that is, apparently, the end of the world as independent media knows it. The Green Party is repeatedly shut out and independent media acts like that's okay?

Where are the standards and if we're crying "NOW!" for "Democracy," we may need to ask who we're demanding it for?

Democracy Now! has made a point to ignore Obama's use of homophobia as a campaign strategy so we'll assume the program's not asking for democracy for the LBGT community. It can't address gender in the US by itself (Monday's segment teamed it up with 'race' because it wanted Geraldo theatrics) so it must not be for women. The multi-racial community has been rendered invisible by Obama's campaign so there's no insistance that they get democracy now.

"Democracy Now!" appears to translate as Barack Always! It's a funny sort of focus and one would assume it's niche programming. That's in direct contrast to what Amy Goodman and her brother David write in Exception to the Rulers: "Why has Democracy Now! grown so quickly? Because of the deafening silence in the mainstream media around the issues -- and the people -- that matter most." Suddenly "people" becomes a single person.

No matter how many times we listen, that doesn't have the sound of "democracy" to it.


Jim: We're doing another roundtable. This is a rush transcript. This one will not go on as long as last week. Our topics are race, gender, the illegal war and much more. Participating are The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Ty, Ava and Jim, Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude, Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man, C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review, Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills), Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix, Mike of Mikey Likes It!, Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz, Ruth of Ruth's Report, and Wally of The Daily Jot. Betty, kick us off. [Illustration done by Betty's oldest son.]


Betty: "Can't I be a feminist and support Barack Obama?" asked the dimwits of the net. No, you can't. Because as you rushed to slam Gloria Steinem, every one of you little twits seemed to think that feminism was supporting a homophobic candidate. Jennifer Fang, you're a homophobe, Racalious, you're a homophobe, That Angry Black Bitch, you're a homophobe. Everyone of you hurt the feelings of lesbians and you meant to do that and you intentionally excluded them from the table and you rendered them invisible.

Cedric: I love Betty.

Betty: Barack Obama thinks homophobia sells in South Carolina. A feminist doesn't support homophobia. The three women may not be homophobes. I really don't know if they are but as they rushed to attack Gloria Steinem, I thought I'd point out for them how easy it was for that uncomfortable shoe to be placed on their feet. Knowledge is power, dimwits, don't shy from it.
Oh, and Mud Flap Gals, they are homophobes, even their token "I am a gay feminist." And unlike the three women above, I won't give them the benefit of the doubt, they've made very clear that they're homophobes among other things.

Jim: I just read Ava and C.I.'s TV commentary to everyone and Betty said, "Oh, let me get into that in the roundtable." Betty?

Betty: I don't know how Ava and C.I. do it. I'm hearing it and thinking, "Yes!" I'm agreeing and I'm thinking, "At least two people can say it!" And then they do what they always do, find something so obvious that no one's spoken of it. Something that was right there but every one refused to notice. In this case, it was Melissa Harris-Lacewell's attacks, and true of the little web girls attacking Gloria as well and the attacks they fronted from their posters leaving comments, those evil second-wave feminists who were White. Evil, evil, evil. Golly, gals, were all the White women in the world you're substitute for Obama's White mommy?

Rebecca: Let me jump in there too. I didn't even think of it, I didn't even notice it. But especially with 'Professor' Melissa and her vast attacks on White women of that generation. My opinion, for his groupies Bambi brings out a Mommy response. He's too weak to get a sexual response. He's like a gay pop star that is obviously gay but all the teeny bopper girls pretend not to notice. So the response is a Mommy response -- a less complicated response than James Dean brought out. And if you want to Mommy him, you gotta deny his real mother, don't you? And didn't Melissa do that?

Cedric: She really did. She put her hate out there for White women. And it really is funny what Ava and C.I. pointed out. 'Those women did this, those women did that!' But she left out the most obvious thing that White women of that generation did: gave birth to Barack Obama. That's what really kills Melissa Harris-Lacewell. That's why she works over time to deny he's bi-racial and insists upon calling him "Black." It's like Paul, the disciple, working overtime to deny all women and especially Mary, mother of Jesus. Melissa Harris-Lacewell shamed herself in front of the nation and just when you can't think of another way she did so, along come Ava and C.I. to set you right.

Ty: Well, unlike Melissa, they've regularly covered the intersections of race and gender. And, like Betty said, this denial and destruction of the White woman by Jennifer Fang and all the others really is a denial and destruction of Obama's mother. Poor dumb little girls posing as feminists but revealing the real agenda in their own words. And Betty's right, those dumb idiots kept saying "I'm a feminist and I'm supporting Barack Obama." He uses homophobia, he lets homophobia go onstage. A feminist can't do that. A feminist can't support that. You little girls aren't feminists, you're not smart enough to be and your vision is too limiting. And I'm a gay African-American and I won't give them a pass. Homophobes! All of you are homophobes! You didn't take homophobia seriously, you didn't call it out and you supported it. That's you Jennifer Fang. Live with it you ugly homophobe, you ugly gay baiter. I wish we could call this "Jennifer Fang is a homophobe!" instead of "Roundtable." Since we can't, I'll repeat it: Jennifer Fang is a homophobe. Jennifer Fang supports homophobes. That makes Jennifer Fang a homophobe. She's no feminist. She's just a gay hater. Kiss my gay and black ass, Jennifer Fang!

Dona: I should point out that while Ty is very serious, he's also having a lot of fun with that topic. What Ava and C.I. wrote, especially that point, really was a revolutionary moment and it was actually online for four hours until just a second ago. They were tired when they went to type it up and didn't grasp that they'd clicked on "publish now" and not "save now." A number of readers saw it and e-mailed. Ty and I were going through the e-mails on a break right before this and we quickly took the piece down. But that point really registered and Donnie, who is bi-racial, was among the ones writing in about this week's TV commentary. He said, "That's what happens when you refuse to recognize a person is bi-racial. And that's how hard a woman like that professor has to attack and work overtime to deny the realities of being bi-racial." The fact that the groupies have a savior who was birthed by a White woman is something they have worked overtime to ignore and erase. And yes, she was of that generation.

Ava: And she actually did self-describe feminist, second-wave, according to two who knew her. That hit us on the plane ride back to California. We were looking for feminists in Hawaii who might have known her so we sent out a S.O.S. when we landed to feminists we know in Hawaii. They were able to come up with three women. One said, "She lived it, she believed in it but I'm not sure she ever self-described that way to me." The two others said, she lived it and that she regularly self-described that way. So congratulations, Melissa Harris-Lacewell, in sliming Gloria and all other White women who were part of the second-wave -- along with women of color that you rendered invisible -- you slimed Bambi's mother. You killed Bambi's mother. I'm laughing because what an idiot. And how comfortable she was to put it out there. She can't stand the fact that Bambi had a White mother. And Bambi's mother was part of that second-wave feminism. Congratulations, Melissa Harris-Lacewell, you truly are an uneducated, bigoted idiot. How proud Princeton must be too have a racist like yourself on staff.

Kat: I'll give the backstory because I was on the plane ride back. Ava and C.I. were doing their pieces for El Spirito and, after they finished that, they were talking about the segment. They kept asking me about it and they kept saying there's something there, did I see it? I didn't. So they're reviewing the segment and Ava's asking C.I., "What did she say?" We all know C.I.'s memory. So C.I.'s reciting Professor Melissa. And when going through Melissa's hate at White women, C.I. stops. Ava and C.I. both exclaim, "Holy sh*t!" at the same time. I'm going, "What?" Then they explain it to me.

Cedric: Well it's so obvious, once it's pointed out. And to sell Barack as "Black" you really did have to have some hang ups about race. Melissa Harris-Lacewell is all for giving Obama's wife a verbal tongue bath but she ignores his mother. Check out her interviews anywhere. That is a consistent pattern. Because for Barack to be "Black," you have to kill off and eliminate his White mother. Melissa Harris-Lacewll has done that in interview after interview. It's like as long as she can deny that he's bi-racial, that woman will not exist. She really is something, Harris-Lacewell, a full-on freak and racist.

Jim: Next week, we plan to go into the ramifications of that. But we're on a strict time table so we're moving on to the "THIS JUST IN! TOUGH TIMES FOR BAMBI!" and "Bambi supporter reveals blow job." Those are Wally and Cedric's joint-posts for Saturday. And they are explosive. Cedric?

Cedric: We saw Alexander Cockburn make a fool out of himself by quoting Obama's preacher. Has Cockburn ever stepped into a church? I don't know but he doesn't seem like he has. I was actually a little nervous about it when I brought it up to Wally and wondering if Wally would want to tackle it. Wally's reaction was "How insulting." And it really was. But we wrote it and Wally called C.I. to see if it met the laugh-meter.

Betty: And C.I. calls me and says, "Betty, something really appalling happened and Cedric and Wally are writing about it. Cedric wants to be sure he's not just the only one offended so I wanted to run it past you." I hear it and my mouth just drops. I said, "Hold on. I'm handing my cell phone to my father." My father, who's a deacon at our church, was so appalled. I said, "Dad, those are C.I.'s ears you're screaming into."

Wally: What happened was that Bambi's preacher decided to act smutty. He decided to say that Bill Clinton did to African-Americans what he did to Monica. As offensive as that is coming from a preacher, the guy says it in church, from the front of the chuch. In the Lord's house, he's trying to do blue material.

Betty: My father was so mad and asked, "What kind of Black churches do they have up north. If that had happened here in Georgia, we would have all called him out and told him just how much he disgraced himself and the congregation with that statement." Dad also loved Wally and Cedric for turning it around him. He said, "Turnabout's fair play and no one's ever mistook the web for a church." He was laughing when he said that.

Ty: Yeah, they turned it around because Bill Clinton did not "screw" or "f**k" Monica Lewinsky. So they made the obvious point that the preacher was saying Bill tempted him with his magic wang. Bill waived it in his face and the preacher must have chowed down. I loved that. I don't know what kind of churches they have in Illinois, but it wouldn't fly in most of America. Of course, the campaign has worked overtime to keep that preacher out of the limelight because he's already considered controversial.

Rebecca: My favorite part was the part about, since the preacher didn't grasp what a blow job was, it was all the more proof that the church needed to stay out of sex education.

Jim: Elaine, you're not supporting Hillary Clinton --

Elaine: No, I'm not.

Jim: But I'm wondering if the Hillary campaign will extend you an invitation to the White House if she is elected. The reason I bring that up is that last week ("Roundtable") you spoke of how if Mike Gravel had dropped out by the time the primary was held in your state, you would either vote Green or you would vote Hillary just to stick it to The Nation. We got a lot of e-mails from people who said, "I think I'll vote for Hillary now just to stick it to The Nation."

Elaine: Well that would be hilarious. For Hillary to get the nomination and to read The Nation and watch them try to act like they hadn't set out to destroy her. It would be priceless. But there is one person supporting Hillary and that person may want to speak.

Betty: That's me. I talked to Elaine about it last week. A friend at work was having some problems with her child and the school counselor wanted the child put on medication. So I called Elaine to get the names of some doctors in my area that she might know who did not automatically hand out prescriptions. And, while we were on the phone, I said, "I think I'm supporting Hillary again." A lot of it has to do with the attacks. It has to do with being a Black woman as well because I'm sick of these women like Melissa Harris-Lacewell rushing out to insist that Barack is "Black." In terms of celebrity endorsements this campaign season, I like Danny Glover and his endorsement did make me strongly consider John Edwards, but there are two women in the world who I have read everything they've written: Alice Walker and Maya Angelou. The fact that Maya's supporting Hillary means a lot to me. Maya's writing has gotten me through good periods and rough periods and she's always been this voice for those everyone else wanted to silence. So her opinion carries more weight than any one else who has endorsed. I was for Hillary until the remarks about 'find another candidate.' But I've looked. No other candidate, no real one, is significantly different than Hillary. I'm also sick of seeing the Harris-Lacewells attack Blacks who speak up for Hillary. And if there's a line in the sand being drawn, which the Harris-Lacewells are trying to do, this Black woman is going to go with Hillary Clinton. Harris-Lacewell really angered my mother. My mother had said, repeatedly, "Don't ask me, I haven't decided." My sisters have been asking her since February. But I was talking about that disgraceful broadcast of Democracy Now! with my father Monday, I'd gone over to their house because I was so upset. I thought my mom was just playing with my kids, but not only was she listening, she ended up going to Democracy Now! to see that interview. When I went over Saturday, she told me, "After what that woman did," meaning Harris-Lacewell, "I'm supporting Hillary. I want no part of people like her" meaning Harris-Lacewell.

Jim: Before we go further, since you've mentioned your family, who are they supporting? Is there a split?

Betty: You don't play the Black card and then try to be White. That doesn't play in my family. And the latest double application of QT as Bambi gets closer to the south just makes them laugh. I had a brother-in-law who was for Chris Dodd -- because of the work Dodd was doing regarding stopping illegal spying. For everyone else, it was between John Edwards and Hillary Clinton. Both of my parents are supporting Hillary. One of my sister's is. One is supporting John Edwards. My nieces and nephews are mainly for Edwards.

Jim: If Cynthia McKinney runs?

Betty: I don't feel really comfortable discussing this since Jess isn't here so let me just say that next week he can have a rebuttal and I'm not an expert on the Green Party. Jess is a Green. But I listened to that debate and they can't go with anyone but McKinney. So she's not going to need my vote in the primary. In the general election? That's a ways off. I've never not voted for Cynthia, she used to my representative. I'll be factoring in how many states the Greens are running a nominee for president in and I'll be factoring in whether they are running to win or running 'safe state' strategies. Again, Jess isn't here and I feel bad about talking about the Green Party because I may be making a million mistakes in my statements or assuming things wrongly. No offense to Ralph Nader, who is very genunie, but after Harris-Lacewell's performance, if he or anyone but Cynthia gets the nomination from the Green Party, they won't be a consideration in the general election. Like my mother, I felt very offended by Harris-Lacewell. I was offended by her attacking Gloria Steinem. I was offended by her distorting Gloria. I was offended by the fact that Harris-Lacewell is a liar, coming on Democracy Now! a week before and plugging Bambi while acting like she wasn't already supporting him. She was and she was even campaigning for him. She came on Democracy Now! and lied to everyone. Then, last week, she comes on to attack Gloria Steinem and suddenly wants to get honest about the fact that she's always been for Obama. She's a liar. She's a con-artist. She's a complete fraud. And to hear a woman like that rip apart Gloria Steinem was just disgusting. Like my mother said of Harris-Lacewell, you can't present yourself as a voice we should listen to when you just lie. And that's all Harris-Lacewell does is lie. My mother also pointed out that Gloria's repeatedly come to our area, Atlanta, and Harris-Lacewell is just another do-nothing-woman who wants to rush in and say, "I've been there." My mother said, "Gloria's been there for all women. That woman" Harris-Lacewell "just wishes she was Mrs. Obama." That pretty much summed it up. My mother does not like liars. If you wanted to get your mouth washed out with soap growing up, tell a lie. She'd give you a chance to correct yourself once. If you didn't, she was bringing out the soap. She'd tell my brother and my oldest sister to stop cursing and they would. But she never used the soap on them for that. She just issued one of her orders that we all knew meant business. But if you lied and she called you out and you didn't say, "Yes, I'm lying." She'd go get the soap. It's too bad Harris-Lacewell apparently wasn't raised in a family where lying wasn't tolerated. Or, in fairness, maybe she was but maybe she just loved the taste of soap in her mouth.

Jim: In Monday's "Iraq snapshot," you were quoted.

Betty: Yeah, Keesha and I were picked by a committee to weigh in. I wasn't part of the committee. C.I. and Ava called me at work and explained I'd been picked and told me I could turn it down if I wanted, that Keesha and I were the top picks but that alternates had been chosen if I didn't want to. Keesha was on the committee so when Gina was making the list of people she felt were the ones the community needed to hear from, everyone knew Keesha was okay with it. I do think, by the way, that Gina is a very strong Black woman and could have spoken better than I did. I think Martha, who was also on the committee could have as well. I think there are a number of Black women, a large number, in the community who could have. I don't think I spoke that well but I do think, going by the e-mails I got, that I did get my points across.

C.I.: Betty spoke wonderfully -- and from the heart and that's what she always does and why she connects with so many people. But I want to note that the Green Party has another presidential candidate forum scheduled. It's at Busboys & Poets in DC (14th and V Streets) February 2nd, which is a Saturday, and starts at ten in the morning -- Jesse Johnson and Kent Mesplay are confirmed to appear others may or may not, but those two are already confirmed. If you're interested in more information, click here. And the Green Party has a new webpage for videos with videos of the San Francisco forum held last Sunday already on it and plans for more videos to be added, presumably including the DC forum. Stealing from Friday's snapshot: "The Green Party's official blog can be found here and certainly if it's happening and known Kimberly Wilder (On The Wilder Side) is probably posting about it."

Jim: In a snapshot last week, you also did a "note" to the Green Party which Jess asked me to bring up. Jess spend last week and will spend this week with his family. That's due to a number of factors including a project for one of his classes. He does participate in some features here but said, "Jim, you know how long these roundtables go." So he wanted to be sure the note was mentioned because he thought it was important and that the Green Party needed to "get their game on" and stop messing around.

C.I.: No link to the snapshot because I don't want to saddle Dallas with hunting down more links. In the one where I quoted from the debate, I put in a "note to" the Green Party that pointed out that the debate was Sunday. We didn't note it until Wednesday. Reason? I was wanting to include their official comment. But they had none. They held a debate on Sunday and issued no press release by Wednesday. By that time, Grist and a number of outlets, The San Francisco Chronicle among them, were not being what I'll say "kind" about the debate. They should have had a statement up, they should have it up by Monday morning. We couldn't wait for their statement any longer, so the debate was noted without a statement. One of the links above, included in Friday's snapshot, goes to their press release issued at the end of the week about Sunday's debate. But by waiting so long, they allowed others to set the terms. After the DC debate/forum, they need to immediately post a statement. No one's assuming that they're going to offer anything but praise but considering the attacks that are out there, they need to have a statement on record early. I know we're pressed for time but Hilda wanted me to note something also, is that okay?

Jim: Hilda is a community member. She does Hilda's Mix and the newsletter is for all members but is to raise the awareness in the community about the disabled and challenged. Hilda is deaf. I'm assuming her point is something to do with that, though it may not be, and we will make time for it.

Dona: All the time that is needed. I'm stopping the clock.

C.I.: Her newsletter runs on Tuesday and I typed up a transcript of the debate last Sunday so it could run. There are people who are interested in the Green Party this election cycle, some are just learning about it and interested. I've covered that party in a number of columns for Hilda's Mix just for that reason. But Chris Dodd is someone Hilda's Mix turned on, rightly, because he was just offering videos. Over and over. And it does send a message. By the same token, when I typed up the transcript, I wasn't there -- Jess recorded it for me, people were excited and then they start searching and finding just videos. If you can't offer even a sample transcript, you're sending a message, whether you mean to or not, to deaf and hard of hearing people that they're not welcome. That's a very big issue. And if you're asking for votes, if you want votes from everyone, you better be providing more than just video or more than just transcript. You better be providing examples of your own that the challenged and handicapped communities are welcomed by you. Gallaudet is something we covered here. I don't think people how big that was. It was huge. It was huge in terms of student protests, absolutely. But as people like Hilda looked to see who was covering it and who wasn't -- and most in independent media were not covering it -- it sent a message. The spirit of fighting back, which is what Gallaudet was really about, you are not going to define us, you are not going to ignore us -- resonated in a number of communites and it is being applied still. So if you're not including content that's welcoming to all, people aren't interested in supporting you. The students of Gallaudet really took a stand, they dug in for the long haul and risked a lot. As important as we all grasp the immigration rights rallies were, so was Gallaudet and that may not be grasped as easily because so many went out of their way to avoid covering Gallaudet. But John McCain can kiss goodbye his support from a lot of the disabled and challenged communities because he was seen as on the wrong side and doing nothing. Gallaudet demonstrated, as did the immigration rights rallies, that people weren't going to just go along passively.

Jim: That's a good point, thank you to Hilda. And I'll take a moment to say hello to people listening. Under the Hilda's Mix umbrella, audio files are being sent out Tuesdays for everyone signed up but especially for those who have depended upon their families to read to them off the screen. All sites are being asked to contribute and are doing so. For our site, we're sending out the roundtable and my reading of Ava and C.I.'s TV commentary. C.I. and Ava are also doing special commentaries just for the audio thing and we're all wondering where the time for that is going to come --

Ava: We're doing ten to fifteen [minute] commentaries. Two per audio newsletter.

Jim: Okay. Well I know C.I.'s said one will always be you two 'watching' a show without looking at the screen and figuring out how easy it was to follow then watching again to see what was missed. The point there, to convey the accessibility factor. I think everyone else with sites are just reading a post from the week. Right?

Wally: Well Pru's doing a report from London. She's calling it "Today in London" and is just recording herself on a street and noting what going on around her and plans to have street noise in it as well. I'm not really sure what everyone else is doing but Mike's mother, Trina, is doing a thing where she's talking about cooking with my mother and Gina and Krista. Ruth, you're doing something original as well, right?

Ruth: Yes. I'm going to offer an analysis of one statement from the radio each week. I've done the one that will run Tuesday, and it is Heidi Boghosian from last week's Law and Disorder. I am analyzing how she clearly sets up the basics in her statement and then explaining where the conversation was able to go as a result. In the beginning, I will just be noting the ones like Ms. Boghosian who do a wonderful job. I am focusing on radio programs and going with, at first, the ones that you are not asking yourself, "Wait, what's being discussed?" After I have done that for a while, I will be offering the ones who leave you confused. But I want to start with the positives and at the top of my own list is Ms. Boghosian.

Dona: Our roundtables will not be in full, they're too long. We'll pick the liveliest moments. Right now, we're considering thirty minutes the max and if that is too much, we'll shorten it. If we get requests for longer, we'll do that as well. If we don't have a roundtable to offer, we'll do "Mailbag" in full. We intend to offer "Mailbag" any week that we don't do a roundtable, for those wondering when the next one is showing up. Obviously, Ava and C.I.'s TV commentaries are the hallmark of this site, the most popular feature, and there's no way we couldn't offer those. Jim already reads them out loud to all of us when Ava and C.I. have finished writing them in long hand so it's no problem to switch on the tape recorder when Jim's doing that. Ty's over the transfer to wave files and I'll be editing the auditing of the roundtable. Clock is now back on and ticking.

Jim: Okay, Cedric and Betty are supporting Hillary. Mike and Wally really want to support John Edwards. What happened last week? Did he firm up your support or close the deal?

Wally: He had a strong week at the end of the week. He demonstrated that he wasn't running an Obama fan club but an actual campaign. Obama made his idiotic comments about how wonderful Ronald Reagan was and John Edwards was there instantly calling that nonsense out. I don't know about Mike, but when it happened, my thought was, "Great. But now you're going to be silent."

Mike: Yeah. I had that fear as well. I've got a fifty dollar bet with my buddy Tony that this is the way Edwards is going to run the rest of his campaign, staying strong and saying, "No, I don't think you can vote for Obama or me and be right. I'm the one to vote for. I'm the one who's going to fight for you." I hope Edwards doesn't cost me fifty dollars. But last week, he followed up that moment by calling out Bambi for the ads that 'friends' were running in Nevada. If you've forgotten, Bambi went to town on John Edwards in Iowa. He was screaming that Edwards should stop the ads that 'friends' were running. Edwards did call them out, which I think was a mistake. But along comes Nevada and as usual Bambi thinks it "There are rules for everyone else but I'm exempted." So Edwards called him out.

Wally: He seemed so much stronger at the end of the week. The Ronald Reagan thing got talked about on campus but the issue with the ads came too late to register on my campus. If it had come earlier, I think people would have stopped saying, "Hey, Edwards may be about to get into the fight" and have instead said, "He's a fighter." That's what we want to see and that's been a huge issue. So I think it was a good week for Edwards and I think that even with the media trying to write him off after Nevada, my prediction, if he keeps this up, you're going to see some strong showings from Edwards. I think that will especially be clear on Super Duper Tuesday. That's my predicition.

Mike: And I think so as well but, remember, I've got fifty bucks bet on it.

Jim: Okay, that's our pulling for Edwards contingent. Dona's passed me a note saying Rebecca's really not spoken a great deal. So Rebecca will toss to you with Hillary, whom you are not supporting.

Rebecca: Well, you have to give it to her, she had a strong week in terms of winning Nevada and winning Michigan. And what The Nation, and others, sent out last week was that Hillary's just a "girl" and it doesn't matter when "girls" win. I don't think they grasp how that message is playing, or that it plays to her benefit. With Michigan, you had Edwards and Barack telling their people to vote "uncommitted." You had John Conyers campaigning for that in Michigan, on behalf of Bambi. And Hillary still got approximately 55% of the vote. John Nichols embarrassed himself crowing that the "uncommitted" vote was a message. Hillary got more in that primary, percentage wise, than any GOP candidate or Democratic candidate has received in any caucus or primary thus far this year. It is a win. Then came Nevada and it was time to down play her with one of the Non-Stars Airs at the magazine posting it was a win for both Barack and Hillary. But somehow when Hillary left Iowa with more delegates, that wasn't a "both" win. They're really pathetic because they are supposed to be journalists and they are supposedly for whomever gets the nomination but they're doing nothing but attacking Hillary. I keep waiting for the "We need a recount in Nevada!" campaign. I'm sure crazy Dennis Kucinich will sign up for that too if he thinks it will get him a few headlines.

Jim: Okay, let's talk about the illegal war and I'm sorry that it's waited for the last. Community member Brandon e-mailed to praise Trina's "Basic in the Kitchen" and to say "Thank you to Trina and C.I. for taking it to a new level." That's the lies that keep us in the illegal war. And Trina's stating in her post that she's basically writing up C.I.'s speech from the Iraq study group that takes place at her house every Friday night.

C.I.: Well, I think that's being kind on Trina's part and robbing her of her credit for what she did which was more than 50%.

Rebecca: Oh shut up, that was an amazing speech you gave.

Elaine: It really was.

C.I.: I have no idea. I was tired. That group goes on for at least three hours. I wasn't planning on speaking. Usually, Ava and I will do a brief bit on what we saw that week speaking around the country. Ava had to take care of some stuff and I wasn't sure what to talk about until I stood up. Trina took my ramble and made it coherent. The illegal war started because of lies. Lies continue to keep the US in Iraq. They aren't the same lies and too often we're being encouraged to believe that they are. When someone's going to the well again on Judith Miller, for instance, we're being sent a message that those were the lies. When they're not confronting today's lies, with Miller gone from The New York Times and Miller the only one being named over and over, the implication is that the lies have stopped. But they haven't stopped. They continue. We're being told, for instance, that 'insurgents' and 'terrorists' are launching attacks in Iraq. No, Iraqis are launching attacks in their own country. The lies of 'insurgents' and 'terrorists' are to divide up the people for US audiences. That's very clear if you saw Gates' joint-press conference last week, by the way. And if one more Iraqi official participates in a conference by opening with "Praise be to God," I really think Americans are going to start asking, "Who are these kooks we've put in charge?" And Americans need to ask that because the Iraqi government is a puppet government. It is not legitimate in the eyes of Iraqis because it does not serve the Iraqi people. That's why it's hidden away in the Green Zone. As bad as Bully Boy is, and he's really bad, as illegitimate as his rule is, he still hasn't felt the need to wall off DC with physical barriers and set up check-points that Americans have to pass through and may, in fact, be denied entry to DC as a result. When Iraq's puppet government has to be hidden away, has to be locked away, when Iraqis cannot freely travel to and in Baghdad, it's a sign of how little support there is for al-Maliki and how little he is seen as a ruler for Iraq. Apologies to Ava because I'm speaking really fast because I know we've got a time limit. That's just one example of the current lies that exist to prolong the illegal war. In Vietnam, the false "North" and "South" was created by outsiders. Vietnam was a single country. In Iraq, the false "Shi'ite" versus "Sunni" was created, by the US, to foster an idea that the US was staying in Iraq to protect the 'good' Iraqis. Briefly, the US repeatedly required Iraqis, from the start of the illegal war, to identify themselves as Sunni or Shi'ite. They created the division. They have fueled it by siding with the Shi'ites early on, by installing them into government. By training them and arming them. Now, to prolong the illegal war, they're alarming the Shi'ites by training the Sunnis. Iraqis could make their own future if the US wasn't picking sides -- and constantly switching -- and fostering the divisions. So you've got two divisions right there, two lies, that prolong the illegal war. You've got the myth of 'insurgents' and 'terrorists' and you've got the myth of Shi'ites and Sunnis cannot get along. Extremists from either sect -- and they are not the only populations in Iraq -- probably will have difficulty getting along. But when you've put in one lunatic fringe, put them in charge, and they are a lunatic fringe based on the behaviors of the thugs at the Interior Ministry and based on the attacks they have condoned -- legal and with a wink of the eye -- on women and the gay community, you create the illusion that only the US can bring peace and only the US can save Iraq from itself. It's a lie and it's a big one because it continues and prolongs the illegal war.

Ty: I heard of that speech from Mike and Trina but I really wish I'd heard it. I think those are excellent points. And by refusing to make them and make them repeatedly, independent media -- which lost interest in Iraq sometime ago -- is prolonging the war. Mike was really impressed with your part on the air war, from the speech.

C.I.: Well, again, it's a lie that prolongs the illegal war. It's told to US audiences that only 'terrorists' are killed. If there's a push back by enough in the Big Media, they will come out, the US military command, with a brief "We regret the deaths of civilians." Well when you bomb a neighborhood, you have to know you are going to kill civilians. If you really regret it, you wouldn't be ordering people to do those missions. And civilians are being killed but, always, Iraqis are being killed. Whether they are part of a resistance, nut jobs or whatever, they're being killed in their own country by foreign forces. And the press releases come out from M-NF and everyone rushes to rewrite them and include them in their reports but very few bother to note that the dead 'terrorists' are always alleged 'terrorists.' You've had wedding parties killed because they were mistaken for 'terrorists.' You've had people sleeping on roofs due to the heat killed because they were mistaken for 'terrorists.' So this idea that the press will go along with calling them 'terrorists,' the press that generally wasn't in any way present for the bombings, is just beyond belief. It's a nice little lie that is supposed to make people in the US feel good. "The US military killed 7 terrorists." Yea! No, not really. That's not what happened. And by repeatedly using that language, the press continues the illegal war. The ones dropping the bombs have no idea who they're dropping bombs on, they're too far up in the sky. The ones ordering it usually aren't present but are dealing with a request. The ones making the requests may be spooked, may be nervous, may be any number of things. But when, as happened this month, 40,000 pounds of bombs are dropped in one area in ten minutes, let's not pretend that this isn't a slaughter. I know we're pressed for time so I would encourage everyone to read Trina's "Basic in the Kitchen" -- she covers it better than I did or am doing here.

Jim: Okay, we're inserting this from the snapshots. It appears in every snapshot and has since November or October. It will continue to run through the event itself.

Meanwhile IVAW is organizing a March 2008 DC event:

In 1971, over one hundred members of Vietnam Veterans Against the War gathered in Detroit to share their stories with America. Atrocities like the My Lai massacre had ignited popular opposition to the war, but political and military leaders insisted that such crimes were isolated exceptions. The members of VVAW knew differently.
Over three days in January, these soldiers testified on the systematic brutality they had seen visited upon the people of Vietnam. They called it the Winter Soldier investigation, after Thomas Paine's famous admonishing of the "summer soldier" who shirks his duty during difficult times. In a time of war and lies, the veterans who gathered in Detroit knew it was their duty to tell the truth.
Over thirty years later, we find ourselves faced with a new war. But the lies are the same. Once again, American troops are sinking into increasingly bloody occupations. Once again, war crimes in places like Haditha, Fallujah, and Abu Ghraib have turned the public against the war. Once again, politicians and generals are blaming "a few bad apples" instead of examining the military policies that have destroyed Iraq and Afghanistan.
Once again, our country needs Winter Soldiers.
In March of 2008, Iraq Veterans Against the War will gather in our nation's capital to break the silence and hold our leaders accountable for these wars. We hope you'll join us, because yours is a story that every American needs to hear.
Click here to sign a statement of support for Winter Soldier: Iraq & Afghanistan

March 13th through 16th are the dates for the Winter Soldier Iraq & Afghanistan Investigation.

Jim (con't): Normally an outlet very friendly to IVAW elected to make some claims last week. They were offensive. C.I.'s Friday "Iraq snapshot" addressed the nonsense but a number of us wanted to address it here. Ruth, Dona notes you have now spoken the least, so you get first crack at it after I summarize. In fact, I'm not going to summarize it and I'm not being kind. This is the US Socialist Worker showing their ass: "On the other hand, the IVAW is discouraging antiwar activists from making the Winter Soldier event a focus for wider organizing, apparently because some leaders of the group believe the IVAW will be better served if it maintains a distance from the larger antiwar movement." Ruth?

Ruth: I was surprised that the outlet would pen such a statement. I am one of the ones who wanted to talk about it but mainly to register how appalled I was by their article. It seemed to me as if they did not know what they were talking about. IVAW has asked only that no event be staged nationally or in DC during their investigation. They announced the dates, as C.I. has pointed out, long ago. They did so in plenty of time. Their investigation does not take place on the anniversary of the illegal war. There is nothing preventing anyone from staging something on the anniversary. I think that is a distortion of what IVAW has stated.

Elaine: I think it's appalling as well. The event is based on an earlier one and, though largely suffering from a media blackout in this country, it had a huge impact. You could see that in terms of the Nixon White House sending out their stooges and staging their photo-ops with their stooges. You can see that in the long attacks on the earlier investigation and it came back to life in the 2004 campaign. John Kerry allowed it to by refusing to honor the young man he was by defending himself. That was a huge event and this will be as well. Even if there is a media blackout. I know we're all trying to figure out our own logistics in terms of attending. I know C.I. will be noting the investgation each day. As someone who gets lazy and let's C.I. carry the weight for all of us, let me say I'm going to insist on special features here and I'll be doing them at my site, on this event. The realities are. You know what, Mike and I have had this discussion since we read C.I.'s comments in the snapshot and I'm going to toss to him because I'm getting really mad right now.

Mike: Okay, well who's not getting to stage an event? No one. But it does appear that people who dabble in impeachment, Iran, Hurricane Katrina, Pakistan and assorted other topics, people who only seem to remember the illegal war on the anniversary of the start of it, yet again want to ride in and say, "Look at us! We're opposed to the illegal war!" Well you're not working to end it. You're too scattered to the wind. I think it's okay to note that from my own conversations with veterans in Elaine's Thursday night groups, conversations outside their group session, I'm not in that and I don't hear about it from Elaine. But from their conversation there is real excitement building for this event. And I'm sure that's the case across the country. This is IVAW's event and, unless I'm missing something, no one else has planned a big event. No one else has thought, "What can we do that's different from our usual action?" IVAW has members who will vote for __ or ___ or ___ but those are members. The organization has not confused itself with a political party or an election campaign. They have not offered repeated excuses for War Hawks. They've stayed true to their purpose and they've planned a big event. It's not fair for the dabblers to show up and try to strut for a day pretending they give a damn about ending the illegal war when they don't. So too bad you big cry babies. Maybe you should have realized that Iraq is a topic for every day and not wasted everyone's time with your Cult of Bhutto crap. Maybe if you pathetic hitchikers had shown a little bit of focus, the illegal war still wouldn't be going on. You pick up Iraq and you drop it based on what will get you into the news, what will get you heard, what will get you read. You're disgusting. It's cute the way you dropped your big story after it turned out your created hero was a little rat who cut a deal to save his own ring-leading ass and finger the five others. Yeah, we haven't heard a word about that independent media created 'hero' since then, have we? You didn't care about the other five. You did care about not telling people, "Uh, this guy's already on probation several times over and one of those probations is for assaulting a woman." You've always got something to rush off to in order to avoid Iraq. Now there's a big event planned by IVAW and you're sensing the excitement and wanting to ride it. You didn't create the excitement, you didn't do a damn thing. This is their event, stop trying to do your usual lazy ass thing of glomming on someone else's work. You're all a bunch of hacks trying to get the title of 'leader' and the reality is you don't lead. If you were Moses, we'd all still be wandering around because you get lost every damn day. "Oh, look, Pakistan!" "Oh, look Lebanon!" "Oh, we've got to go to Jena!" "Oh, there might be a war in Iran!" There's no might about Iraq. So, really, go screw yourselves. You're pathetic. And I have my own beliefs of why that is. I will state simply that you don't care about the illegal war but you do care about building something -- but it's not really what you loosely define it as. I think a lot of you are in political closests and the rest of you are just desperate for the limelight. I don't see that any of you really give a damn about a war that's about to enter the fifth year because just doing something once a week on Iraq is too much for you. Forget every day, just once a week. You're a bunch of losers who used the illegal war to make a name for yourself and if the illegal war isn't the big issue in the morning news that day, you don't think there's any reason to weigh in. Instead you glom on whatever topic made the front page of The New York Times. You are pathetic. "You" doesn't include the US Socialist Worker, by the way. They treat the illegal war seriously. But I was appalled by that piece.

Jim: Dona says there's time for only one more comment and that Ava's spoken very little and it should be her because "Mike is on fire" and, obviously, Ava can do that as well.

Ava: I can but I'm not in a good mood. So consider yourself warned. I mean Medea Benjamin, I don't give a damn about what happens in Pakistan right now. Is that clear enough for you? I don't give a damn. Pakistan will do what Pakistan does. The US has sent the military into Iraq and an illegal war is ongoing. Try remembering that. We don't need your Saint Bhutto piece. Try writing about war resisters or is that too difficult for you? We don't need your excuses for Congress. Tom Hayden, we don't need your excuses for Congress. We don't need your pathetic attempts to channel the peace movement into voting for War Hawks. What we need, and this is true of Medea as well, is your strong voice on the war and you are failing us. You are failing us over and over again. You are failing us and you are prolonging the illegal war. Norman Solomon, is it impossible for you to write about Iraq? That should be your only focus in your columns since you love to jump that train in book form. That's what Molly Ivins planned to do, focus on Iraq in every column until the illegal war ended. Was she just that much stronger and tougher than you are? Maybe she was. Molly was very strong. But you want to whine about this or that. And the air-wars are going on and what the hell are you writing about? I'm still waiting for your piece on Ehren Watada or any war resister. I'm waiting on Phil Donahue and Jeff Cohen and all the rest of you little boys. People are standing up and you can't note them. But you'll all rush to defend a woman who won't stand up. Yeah, I went there. Stupid little Sarah Olson. All three of you and many more suddenly could mention the name Watada when it was time to defend Olson from having to make a decision. Olson was being asked to testify at Watada's court-martial. Watada was being court-martialed for taking a stand. Olson took no stand. "I can't talk about my strategy" she whimpered repeatedly and pathetically. She wanted everyone to fight for her when she wouldn't even say whether she'd testify or not. And then she got that little dig into Watada in the summer of 2006 that we're all supposed to pretend wasn't catty to the extreme. Watada stood up and where the hell were all of you? Not a damn bit interested. But then Little Sarah might have to take a stand, she wasn't taking one, but, heavens, she might have to, and you all churned out the same bad columns on poor little Sarah. Boo-f**king hoo. You are not the story, your friends are not the story. The story is Iraq. If you can't grasp that, no wonder the war's about to hit the five year mark. You've pretty much all done something embarrassing. Laura Flanders, as a gay woman, you should be the last to make jokes about an assault on any student, but you did that, didn't you? You made a little joke about a deadly attack "by shoe" or "with a shoe." Would it have been so damn funny if the assault had been on a gay kid? Then you, a gay woman, ignored Barack Obama putting homophobes on stage in South Carolina to plead with him instead about dropping Richard Daley as a supporter. That's f**king pathetic. And I could make a long list of a lot of other people who have embarrassed themselves repeatedly. Andrew Cockburn, a relative of Flanders, had an important piece last weekend. It never made the snapshot because CounterPunch decided to launch their attacks on feminism. They then tried to make up for it by offering a 'I'll defend feminism but not that Gloria woman' piece of bullsh*t. Gloria is the public face of feminism. When you slime her, you slime the movement. It's like attacking any leader. And while you were offering that repeatedly, via Ishameal whomever that no one ever knew of and never will because he's a fool, you're not covering the illegal war. So it's no surprise that Saturday rolls around and Alexander Cockburn doesn't have a damn thing to say about the illegal war. Amy Goodman, you're pathetic. You went through 2007 without interviewing a single new war resister and I know for a fact that some did contact Democracy Now! but you had other things to do. You've all offered the 'alternative' equivalent of what's Britney Spears doing now? The only thing that 'independent' media has proven is that they are 'independent' from the peace movement. Talk to Ruth who listens to hours of Pacifica radio each week and ask her how much attention the ongoing illegal war gets? Aaron Glantz, your site is called The War Comes Home. Apparently the same war also goes on lengthy holidays as evidenced by the fact that we had nothing for December from your much promoted project. Now you show up with a piece of crap report where you pick and choose the favorables on Bambi from Stephen Zunes' report which is not as favorable as you imply. I call that lying. I call that wasting everyone's time. I call that ignoring reality and I call that ignoring the illegal war because your project, if you've forgotten, as weak as it is, is supposed to focus on the veterans. Did you forget that when you finally came off your December holiday to do your bad January 18th report? Wasn't your whole point to tell these stories that weren't being told? Instead, you felt the need to refute Ruth and offer up Mark Benjamin did too! Benjamin was as defocused as everyone else in independent media. Grab a clue, The Washington Post broke the story and did so by focusing. And, for the record, before Dana Priest and Ann Scott Tyson's series -- their series -- the paper had already covered the issue. Quit playing like the whole world was silent but sometimes Mark Benjamin offered a report or two. Those reports weren't of interest to CounterSpin or Democracy Now! when they brought him on as a guest and you can check the archives because that's not what he spoke of. Get over it, The Washington Post served independent media their lunch. And there's something really pathetic about you, Janine Jackson and others trying to strip a paper of its credit to score a few points for indymedia. But, isn't it interesting, that to score a few points on Iraq, you have to go deep into the recent past to applaud indymedia? Independent media has no focus and is nothing but a travelogue. "Where will Goodman go today? Oh, this is so exciting!" No, it's pathetic. Do you all suffer from ADD? In your own lives, do you hop from partner to partner as quickly as you do from topic to topic? You should all be sent to your rooms to think about your actions because your actions have prolonged the illegal war. Apologies to C.I. because we take the notes and when one of us speaks, only one is taking the notes. Usually, when one of us needs to shake our hands during one of these pieces or take a break, we'll nod to the other so they'll be sure to catch it. And let me add, don't call time on me yet, Jim, I see you're about to, let me add that these statements were made by me. Ava. Don't go whining to C.I. about what I said. I am a grown woman and I don't need a tattle tale or a whiner. Now you can call time.

Jim: And I am calling time. Dona was correct, Ava did continue Mike's thread. We hope to do a mailbag and not a roundtable next week. Due to the audio report Ruth was working on and due to her helping out here, C.I. said no report from her for The Common Ills. Jess, we miss you and the next roundtable we do will open with your comments on the Green Party.
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