Saturday, October 29, 2011


NOW HEAR THIS: Cindy's Internet broadcasts continue!

CHRIS FLOYD!  Click here to listen or download, beginning at 2:00 PM San Francisco time.  Today, (October 30th), Cindy brings us a long-anticipated (and memorable) interview with Chris Floyd, the intellectual light shining through the pages of "Empire Burlesque."  A prolific and articulate writer, his perceptive private blog has illuminated all of us here at Soapbox and inspired many of our firm principles.  We're not yet certain WHICH topics he'll discuss with Cindy.  However, I would guess that he will discuss our recent "Police Riot" in Oakland on Tuesday night, 10/25 2011.  That was the evening that Scott Olsen sustained a skull fracture after being shot in the head with a police projectile while peacefully participating in an Occupy Oakland march.  Honor our veterans?  An Iraq War veteran who survived two tours of duty got his skull fractured in ... Oakland!  53 activists were arrested in Atlanta. while Nationally, SWAT teams were deployed to boot out peaceful protesters!  THIS is how we protect our First Amendment rights!  Cindy observed the fact that the Occupy movement's terminology about "the 99 percent vs. the 1 percent elite" is not entirely accurate; far too many of the 99 percent are serving as willing tools of the 1 percent - in the police forces, in the media, even in the general public, where you can always find plenty of people eagerly genuflecting to the high and mighty.  As Chris notes: "You can smell the fear in the boardrooms (and in their bought-and-paid-for extensions, the government offices) around the world."  He and Cindy then proceed with their most wonderful discussion!
And please be sure to use the "Click here" link above to hear Chris Floyd talk with Cindy.  



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Monday, October 24, 2011

Obama on the Couch--10/23/11 Soapbox Show

Obama On The Couch!  Click here to listen or download, beginning at 2:00 PM San Francisco time.  Today, (October 23rd), Cindy welcomes Dr. Justin A. Frank M.D. - who practices and teaches psychoanalysis in Washington, DC and is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the George Washington University Medical Center.  A clinician with more than thirty year's experience, Dr. Frank has been a former columnist for,, and continues to be a frequent contributor to on topics as diverse as politics, film, and theater.  He employs the principles of applied psychoanalysis to assemble the kind of psychological profile used in his previous best-selling book Bush on the Couch (ReganBooks 2004, 5, 7) in his new book Obama on the Couch: Inside the mind of the President, released October 18, 2011 by FreePress/Simon&Schuster. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The United Rogue States of America by Cindy Sheehan

(The USA is the) most dangerous power the world has ever known - the authentic rogue state, but a rogue state of colossal military and economic might. Nobel Literature Laureate; Harold Pintar, 2001

As Khujeci Tomai put it, “Dead men tell no tales. They cannot stand trial. They cannot name the people who helped them stay in power. All secrets die with them.” defines a Rogue State as: “—n a state that conducts its policy in a dangerously unpredictable way, disregarding international law or diplomacy.” Especially since 9/11, according to this definition, the USA has sunk to the level of Rogue State.

Wow, I thought Bush was bad and that we had sunk about as low as we could go during those insane years, but Obama is excavating new territory.

Just since the Occupy movement began, the Obama regime has (among other things): 1) assassinated several US citizens in Yemen,  (without due process) including a 16 year old having dinner with his buddies; 2) Sent “advisors” to Vietnam (oops, I meant Uganda; 3) aided and abetted the assassination of a leader of a sovereign state.

Not a bad month for a Rogue President still in his first term, eh?

After the assassination of Qaddafi, at least two interesting things came to my awareness—the first one was the Rogue Libyan ambassador to the US telling our own Rogue news commentator, Wolf Blitzer, that the “rebels” were so happy that the US paid at least two billion dollars for the overthrow of Qaddafi. The second one was a tweet from the OWS movement the day Qaddafi was assassinated that said, “Congrats Libya! Your struggles against the #Gadhafi regime is (sic) over. Let's hope for a bright future #solidarity.”

Okay, let’s deconstruct and connect these two events.

First of all, Ambassador Ali Aujali was absolutely gloating and so ecstatic that Qaddafi was executed because it was “better” for Aujali that he not be captured and brought to trial—those were unexpected true words from the Robber Class--since dead men can tell no tales. In all his bloodthirsty glory Wolf, who has at last, dropped all pretenses at being a journalist, was also beaming with glee that Qaddafi was slaughtered (also without due process). 

During that interview, Wolf did ask Aujali about the chances of the “rebels” paying the US back for the literal blood money taxpayers paid for this criminal regime change. Aujali demurred.

Then the tweet from the OWS movement came to my attention, showing a profound shallowness of comprehension on its part.

The “people” of Libya did not, I repeat, did not, rise up against Qaddafi. While I am sure that there were some well-meaning individuals who wanted to see the end of the Qaddafi regime, it was more like the two billion from the US funny money mint and over 26,000 US/NATO bombing raids that killed unknown thousands of innocent Libyans that actually accomplished that feat.

How can the “struggle” of the people be over if the new government is flying the flag of the deposed and oppressive former monarchy and dividing up the spoils of blood-soaked victory between various foreign oil companies? I really wish the Occupy Wall Street movement would think harder before it parrots the propaganda of the establishment. Even though I am a member of the 99%, that kind of language does not speak for me.

Remember, way back in March when I denounced the UN “no-fly zone,” because I said that was code for, “bombing civilians?” Many people accused me of “not caring about the people of Libya,” but it appears that I was tragically correct.

Yes, Wall Street is a big problem and Obama is, once again, raking in all the ill-gotten gains from donors from there as he can. But does anyone reading this have any better ideas for ways that the US can spend two billion dollars rather than killing civilians, deposing leaders, and propping up puppet governments that will be friendly to big oil? If the war issues are not addressed in a more meaningful and comprehensive way, then I am afraid the movement has every chance of being neutralized. What happens if Geithner and Bernanke are “indicted,” and the crazy-empire train keeps chugging along?

Our Rogue State is clearly out of control and, as I have said many times, economic and social justice just are not possible without complete and unconditional peace.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Justice for Casey Sheehan and Hundreds of Thousands of Others

Justice for Casey Sheehan and hundreds of thousands of others

It was with great sorrow and fear that my family watched the insane and inexplicable rush of our nation to invade two countries that had absolutely nothing to do with the events on September 11.2001.

It was with greater sorrow and fear that my family watched one of our indispensable members, Casey, march off to one of those immoral occupations in Iraq.

Our lives were shattered when he came home in a cardboard box, shortly after he was killed there on April 04, 2004. We picked Casey's body up from the airport in San Francisco for the final time at a United Airlines loading dock, where his cardboard box was unceremoniously loaded into the hearse for his last ride home.(And the longest ride of my life).
Andy Sheehan kisses the coffin of his brother

Along with the rest of our family, Casey was opposed to these wars of aggression and before he left for Iraq, Casey, a Humvee mechanic, told everyone that he wouldn’t be able to “kill anyone.”

Well, one president, thousands of American deaths, over a million Iraqi deaths, and almost nine years later, Barack Obama has announced that all US troops would be leaving Iraq by the end of this year. I'd like to remind everyone that Barack Obama stated that ending the war in Iraq would be the "first thing" he did as President--and we could even "take it to the bank," (probably one of the failed ones) and that this withdrawal is something Bush-Maliki scheduled back at the end of 2008.

I would like to send my deepest apologies to the
Injured Iraqi Girls--our children, too!
people of Iraq for what my country has done there, but also my congratulations (no matter how reserved) because this is something that the people of Iraq have been fighting for and I am happy for them that US troops finally will be vacating their country.

However, did Obama just forget about the heavily fortified 104 acre US Embassy in Baghdad that employs 3000, or the enormous US consulates in Basra and Erbil, that will eventually employ about another 3000 people--or the thousands of paid mercenaries that will remain after the end of this year?

I didn’t hear Obama talk about the destruction of infrastructure and lives for the people of Iraq—or the high increases in cancer rates and birth defects from the usage of depleted uranium coated munitions.

The two most important things, though, that I did not hear Obama say are these: prosecuting members of the Bush regime for the hundreds of lies it told about Iraq, and paying reparations to the people of Iraq.

I can only hope that when US troops do pull out that the US puppet government pulls out of there, too, and the people of Iraq can finally and completely have their country back and with full and unfettered access to the natural resources that belong to the people. Unfortunately, with thousands of Americans, mercenary troops and foreign oil companies, I don’t think the struggle is over.

Also, which war will Obama send these troops that are leaving Iraq to? Pakistan? Afghanistan? Uganda? Iran? Or somewhere else that we can only imagine?

These wars have cost my family dearly and have sucked at least three trillion dollars out of our economy.

We will never get Casey back and no amount of death/destruction will make his “sacrifice” “worth it”—the only thing that could bring comfort to our family now is accountability and an end to war as the first go-to tool in the box of US foreign policy.

RIP, Casey Austin Sheehan and so many others who are dead for absolutely no reason other than profit for the few.
Casey, 2 years old



Transcript of Show With Malachy McCourt (10/16/11 Show)


CS: Cindy Sheehan

CS: Welcome back to Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox. I am your host Cindy Sheehan and you are listening at

Well I’m heading to New York City tomorrow (note: I didn't make tat trip and decided to stay home and attend Occupy Sacramento) to attend the Occupy Wall Street protest on Saturday. I am going to Boston on Sunday and I am going to be speaking at the Occupy movement of Boston and I think it is an exciting movement but my question to the movement is what’s next? I will be writing reports for my blog at I will be doing some interviews while I am there to play on the air for next week and the week after.

My guest today and I am so honored and thrilled to have him, he is politician, actor, writer and raconteur and a very dear man Malachy McCourt. Malachy welcome to Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox.

MM: Grand to be with you again Cindy. Good to hear your voice and good to know you are still keeping the good fight going.

CS: Well you too. You never stop. I was looking through your website and your Wikipage and I was really delighted to see that I am mentioned on your Wikipedia page for endorsing you when you ran for governor of New York and that was an whole hearted endorsement I gave you. Please tell my listeners the very sweet story about how we first met.

MM: It came about when I saw in the paper a picture of one son kissing the coffin of the lad that was killed in, God I forget…

CS: Iraq.

MM: In the war. I was very touched by that. But what struck me was, well the direct connection in that, my mothers name was Sheehan, Angela. My brother Frank had written a book called Angela’s Ashes, which catapulted our family in to some sort of fame. Anyway that connection and jut on an impulse I rang your town and I saw there were about twenty Sheehan’s there and the first one just happened to be your listed phone number. So we got on the phone and I told you that I was touched and moved by the picture in the paper. So that was the beginning of our friendship. Then you came and spoke at the Martin Luther King affair at the Riverside Church and you stayed at our house with the family. We distributed the family amongst friends and then you subsequently you endorsed to my delight, you endorsed my run for Governor on the Green Party ticket in 86, 96,..

CS: 2006

MM: (laughing) I’m losing it Cindy!

CS: First of all I’m pretty sure we are kin and secondly my ex-husband who was my husband at the time his name is Patrick and you have a brother named Patrick.

MM: An uncle.

CS: An uncle named Patrick, He was Patrick Sheehan?

MM: Patrick Sheehan.

CS: Okay. When my Patrick was younger he went to Catholic School and his Priest kept telling him there was a song in Ireland called the Ballad of Patrick Sheehan.

MM: Ah!

CS: He finally heard it. So anyway Malachy I was very touched when you called. It was just a few days after we buried Casey and it made a big difference to my family. And I have to tell you that I interview on Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox some very interesting and amazing people and when I tell my children who I interview,  they know my are just usually, "oh that’s just what mom does," but when I told them I was interviewing you they all very excited and they told me to pass their love on to you and to Diana and to the extended family that we got to know when we came and visited you that year.

MM: Lovely, it was a lovely time and it was bittersweet remembering Casey. We all got to know him too even in death. We know that what you’re doing for humanity is so needed and praiseworthy. And that you have not stopped is a great tribute to your own spirit cause you could have retired and in your grief and been miserable and quiet but you decided the best thing you could do was bring comfort and to make those that inflict war and who kill our children, that they must be brought to justice. I believe those that send peoples children to war must be tried for war crimes. Especially when they spread lies about weapons of mass destruction and all that sort of rubbish. Your occupation of George Bush’s town in 2 ways was just wonderful and it was I found ironic and funny what you did. I know it’s not meant to be comedic but it was just such a wonderful thing to do to just camp at his doorstep.

CS: Well it was very ballsy wasn’t it?

MM: It was indeed.

CS: I mean like you said quote unquote going to the doorstep of the most powerful man in the world was kind of ballsy. I want to remind people that we did that in the day before MySpace, Twitter or Facebook. Now all the revolutions are Face Book and Twitter revolutions or uprisings. So anyway, I know that you know and you can identify and that’s one of the reasons that I supported you when you ran for governor because you can identify with the 99 percenters. You’ve been there. You’ve been desperately poor in your life. You have gone out to the Occupy Wall Street movement. I’m going there Saturday. I’d like you to tell me and my listeners what you have observed there.

MM: It is brilliant in its conception and absolutely astounding in it’s inception and it is very clever in it’s deception of the people who are running the country at this moment. What is happening there is the strategy is of course; never let the enemy know what you are up to. Because the folks are not making demands there as people usually do, they usually have a list of demands they’re letting the enemy guess what those demands are, what those needs are, what those requirements are. But what’s its doing is they are attempting to re float the ship that those bastards in Wall Street have sunk. And they have gotten away in luxurious yachts and left our ship sinking.

I think that we are helping them, those young folks down there to clear up this mess. Now I’m not sure whether their tactics are going to work because after the Vietnam War draft was somewhat lifted the whole antiwar movement stopped and yet we have wars just about everywhere. We have thieves like Cheney and Halliburton and Black Water all robbing the country blind. Wall Street is profiting. They’re all supposed to be patriots. If they were that bloody well patriotic why don’t they do everything nonprofit to help our country win the war on terrorism, which we are guilty of ourselves?

CS: Right. Well speaking of that you know I haven’t quit because the wars of course aren’t over and Obama has expanded the wars in to Pakistan, into Libya. Now they have all this fabrication going about Iran. Carl Levin who the chairman of the War committee, or something in the Senate--I can’t remember what it’s called. He called the fabrication of the Iranian who was making a plan to maybe assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador, he called that an "act of war." So we have a two party system that is basically a War Party or the Wall Street Party and that’s why I haven’t stopped, because these things are still happening. I don’t think that the Democrats are friends of the worker or friends of peace. So where should the movement be going? What’s the specific strategy that goes beyond just camping out?

MM: Well I think that when the Vietnam antiwar was going on it brought together a whole lot of people with disparate viewpoints. Now what it is we need to bring together people, we’re bogged down with a two party system. 

The two party system here is like Pepsi Cola and Coca Cola both full of rubbish. They’re both sugar and water, they’re both poison, they’re addictive and people are still thinking that it’s democracy and it’s not democracy to have just those choices. What I think, what I see down here and I hope it continues is that we are beginning to exercise the right to think and we need to exercise the right to choose.  I hope it spreads across the world.

Now we have these capitalists, these robber barons who have planes, they have yachts, they have limousines, they have the latest equipment, they have huge mansions, they have apartments. They fly here and there. They go anywhere they want. Get tables anywhere they want and they deduct every bit of that. Now here’s what I want and would like because I have just hit the age of 80 years old. I have been an actor, a writer and a protester and still protesting and marching, I need this body of mine, it’s the only one I have they gave it to me when I was born and I haven’t been able to trade it in yet. I can’t find the bloody garage that will take it and give me a new one.

So here’s what I want Cindy. I want that I could put a value, a price I should say not a value, they have Warren Buffet and they say he’s worth I think it’s about 60 billion as is Bill Gates. They say he worth, now I don’t know what anybody is worth all I know is suppose we put a ten million price on my body. Now I want, as I grow older that I have deterioration of my body. I want to be able to take off, I broke my leg for example so they put a million on my leg, a broke hip, put another million as years go on I want to be able to deduct the failure of my organs and when I die I want my family to be able to deduct ten million dollars off their taxes no matter how long it takes to go through that. As well as these fellows taking off their yachts and their planes, they get back, they can take them all off where as we can’t unless our bills are over seven thousand dollars, medical bills that is. But there’s no value on our lives. No price and I want the price, I want to be near to Warren Buffet if possible.

CS: Do you see this as a crisis of capitalism and do you think that there might be a chance for some kind of income equality or income justice without peace with our government spending billions of dollars a month on these wars?

MM: The pentagon Cindy spends 47 million dollars every hour of every day of every week of every month 47 million dollars. I mean when we finish speaking they will have spent close to 50 million dollars today. Now that is absolutely useless and a waste of our resources. So unless our here’s what happening is that our young folks are not informed, they’re not reading and they twitter in 149 characters is not going to make anyone literate. We have to know what is going on in the world and we have to know what is going on in the world right now.

We need each of us, now I am powerless over anybody else. And as we know and you know well too Cindy and you’ve been doing it. We can only sweep our own side of the street. Now if I do that and I know I am absolutely certain you will be there too and you will be there for me and then our families and they will be on either side of us then somebody on the other side of us will say well I better sweep my side of the street and just like those young folks down on Occupy Wall Street cleaning up. The mayor wants to move them out Mayor Bloomberg. But they say, no we’ll do it ourselves and that’s terrific.

CS: And I hope they stand their ground.

MM: But I don’t know if that capitalistic mode will fade from here because there is a great deal of comfort to be hand in the capitalistic system and just about everybody thinks they will eventually be multi-millionaires too. But that’s a lot of bull rubbish.

CS: Well they’re saying of course I have a concern about the movement that we will talk about next. But the corporate media, which I do watch because I think it is good to always know what the propaganda is then we know how to respond to it. But they’re all talking about this occupy Wall Street movement as a class war and they are talking as if it is a bad thing for it to be a class war. 

Now you mentioned Warren Buffet and he himself said, "of course it is a class war and it’s my class, the wealthy class, that is winning." They only call it a class war when our side fights back. I think to put it in those terms is very instructive and it causes a lot of good dialogue where yes our class is literally being strangled to death while Warren Buffets class is doing fine.

MM: Well what happens is of course, as we know, the nature of war generally speaking is that nobody declares war unless they’re pretty sure of winning. Now the one percent have declared war on the rest of America. On the 99 percent cause they’re sure of winning because they are holding all the cards and the money. Now as you know when I ran for governor one things that I wanted to do was as chief magistrate of the state I wanted to make sure that if George Bush who was the President ever crossed my state line of New York I was going to have him arrested and tried for war crimes. So of course every body said that’s absolutely ridiculous, you can’t arrest the President.

Well you can arrest criminals and he is a criminal. Now the one percent are fairly sure of winning this class war. They have declared the war and therefore we have to respond by fighting back and making sure that all those thieves, all those thugs, all those robbers have to be tried for what they did to America. They robbed us blind and torpedoed the ship of state and its time they were tired for all that robbery. They’re getting away with it and that’s one thing we have to see. We talk about this being a land of laws.

CS: Well and I back in 2008 when I was running for congress, but I thought you didn’t run for governor Malachy I thought you stood for governor.

MM: I stood.

CS: When I stood for congress and I stood for congress against Nancy Pelosi 2008. Way back then the Democrats and Republicans conspired to give Wall Street and almost one trillion dollar bailout and I thought it would be a good protest to build like guillotines out of balsa wood and cardboard and tin foil and out them on wheels and silently walk up and down Wall Street. I thought that the Wall Street robbers would get that message but everybody at the time said, "no, no we can’t do that, that’s too radical," or whatever.

MM: You were ahead of your time.

CS: I was ahead of my time. But anyway in 2005 when I camped out, when I occupied Crawford Texas and where we had a real chance I think of actually making a difference Democrats and Democrat organizations swooped in, they took control, they co-opted that movement just to elect Democrats. I am afraid that is going to be the fate of this Wall Street movement because as I already said the Democrats are obviously not friends of the working class or the robbed class. They’re one of the Wall Street parties and if the movement is used to have Nancy Pelosi as the Speaker of the House again. To reelect Obama to the White House then the movement will literally be killed at that point.

MM: I think the Senate is just filled with multi-millionaires on both sides of the aisle and the same thing with the so called House of Representatives and honesty goes by the board as they cross the threshold and they take the oath. They’re all committing perjury when they take the oath because they are not upholding the constitution of the United States. They’re upholding their bank accounts and the bank. That’s what’s happening. They should be honest. And you know the definition of an honest politician is one who when he’s bought he stays bought. That’s what an honest politician is. These fellows and women they’re all the same, many of them anyway. There are some decent ones in there but unfortunately I think we are in the hands of a majority of thugs and thieves.

CS: Absolutely. Well Malachy we are running out of time. Do you have any more words of wisdom for myself and my listeners?

MM: Live every day like this will be your last, because one day you will be right. Here in American it’s optimism of the will and pessimism of the intellect. And we’re going to be okay as long as we’re together. We’ll keep talking and we’ll keep marching. That’s what it is. Thank you Cindy.

CS: Thank you for being on the show, Malachy.

Thanks to Dede Miller for transcribing the show. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Not My First Dance

Not My First Dance
Cindy Sheehan

In the year 2007, I was hot on the trail of the impeachment of George Bush and Dick Cheney for treason. One of my faux-allies was Congressman John Conyers who wrote a book called: The Constitution in Crisis: The Impeachment of George W. Bush while he was ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee. 

So, after Conyers became the chair of that same committee when the Democrats regained control of the House of Representatives in early 2007, many of us pressed him hard to introduce articles of impeachment. I went to DC frequently and met with him many times. Each time, he would schedule another meeting and we would get together and talk about it some more; then he would schedule another meeting…until one day in July of that year, 50 of us got arrested in his office after we went there demanding impeachment...and he tried to schedule another meeting.

I think that’s called something like: stonewalling.

Lately, I have been working with the activists of Occupy Sacramento. They are in full solidarity with all the movements around the world, yet they are also fighting a daily battle to be able to fully realize their 1st Amendment rights to peaceably assemble and freedom of speech. Occupy Sacramento is only allowed to “Occupy” Cesar Chavez Park from the hours of 5am to 11pm—if anyone is left in the park after those hours (like I was this past Saturday), he/she is arrested by the Sacramento PD and then delivered to the very inhospitable hands of the Sacramento County Sheriffs (more about my arrest experience, later).

Tuesday, October 18th, the Occupy movement packed the City Council chambers and 40 of us spoke in favor of the city allowing us to keep our tents up all day and night and to actually have an occupation where six of the hours each day are not wasted by tearing down and setting the camp back up.

The individuals who spoke at the meeting were all impassioned and articulate. Several of them cited Supreme Court cases and case law to back up our claim to the park. Many of us stressed our Constitutional Rights, etc.

I spoke briefly at the meeting and after I spoke, one of the mayor’s (NBA player cum mayor, Kevin Johnson) lackeys brought me over a card with “Cindy, Thank you for your courage, K,” written on the back.

I wish I could say that the Mayor had a little courage to support the Occupation, but he said that he would be in “dialogue” with the movement to try and figure things out—bullshit, we dialogued for over two hours with him and we weren’t asking for a “dialogue” anyway.

The activists at Occupy Sacramento are brilliant, respectful and dedicated to making the world a better place for everyone. They keep Cesar Chavez Park clean and they provide services to the homeless population.

Occupy Sacramento is also getting stonewalled by the political establishment which hopes that if enough rope is let out, the activist will either hang themselves or fashion the rope to make more chains to bind us.

The movement is growing and soon the establishment won’t have any options whether to grant or deny favors. The days are finally here where the more oppressed a people are, the harder they fight back.

The young people were upset at the City Council’s decision, but I told them it was a foregone conclusion and everyone from the councilors to the mayor played his/her part. It’s really not about the 99% or the 1%, because there are so many people who aren’t in the 1% regarding income/wealth, but they sure do due diligence or enforce for the 1%. The Sacramento City Council and their police goons are perfect examples of that.

"Greed" is not a vice that is found solely in the 1% and this is why I keep saying that the answer lies within each and everyone of us in our communities. We must create the revolutionary communities that we choose to reside in—not have arbitrary rules forced on us by abusive politicians who don’t have our best interests at heart—only the interests of the 1%.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Transcript of 10/9 show with Martina Correia, sister of Troy Davis

CS: Cindy Sheehan
MC: Martina Correia

CS: Welcome back to Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox. I am your host Cindy Sheehan and you are listening at

Our guest today is Martina Correia sister of recently executed Troy Anthony Davis. It’s a very timely and meaningful show and I know that there is a lot of things going on around the country with the Occupy Wall Street movement and Occupy everywhere movement and that’s very important and here at the Soapbox personally we are in solidarity with that but I don’t think we should forget the sacrifice and martyrdom of Troy Davis and work really hard against the institutional inequalities that keep allowing executions in this country. The death penalty and the inequality of so called cop killers being murdered by the state when killer cops get to basically go free with just a slap on the wrist.

Martina Correia welcome to Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox.

MC: Thank you for having me.

CS: First of all I would like to extend my profound condolences and the condolences of many of the Soapbox listeners who told me to pass on their love and support for your family.

MC: Thank you.

CS: There is one issue I am very interested in myself from my own son’s death in Iraq and that’s accountability. I read where you are working to hold the people accountable for your brother Troy’s death and what I want to know is who are the ones who were wrong and how can we hold these people accountable?

MC: One of the things is the parole board. The parole board is not a judicial body and so we go in there with court documents, proof, witnesses stuff like that and the other side, the victims side come in after us and they are able to say whatever they want to say even though the judge has said you can not say these things in court because it’s not true they’ll start talking about different things. Like last time they were talking about bloody shorts and they were like there’s no such thing as bloody shorts. There was no DNA or anything else linking Troy to the crime. And then this year they decide they will start talking about there has to be shell casings, they found shell casings all over the city and they are like how many people turned in their shell casings and that’s how they linked one shooting. There was still not anything with Troy’s finger prints on there but still they came on and told the press that they linked Troy to the shooting because of shell casings and that they linked him to more than one shooting.

 Those things are not factual and the parole board is made up of former prosecutors, former police officers and things like that and then when they vote that vote how they want to vote and they vote in secrecy. They don’t have to have any kind of legal entities talking to them or anything like that. They listen to the information and make a decision based on personal issues and personal feelings.

CS: Well and you have identified the parole board and their relationship to the police state apparatus and it’s inherently weighted against somebody who is unjustly part of the system and somebody who has literally their life in their hands but talk about the institutional inequalities of the system that actually railroaded your brother to death. Your brother was obviously to people who can read and think an innocent man.

MC: Yes, I believe that too. I believe that just like the gentleman in Georgia who just got a stay until February. The parole board was so nasty and they were about to deny him. This man would have been dead on Tuesday if a court had not stepped in and defended him. That’s how the parole board is. The parole board in Georgia if you say I am guilty but I am sorry then they will spare your life. If you want to fight the system and say I am not guilty, I did not do this, they don’t care about that. They think you are not remorseful and therefore they will make sure you are executed. They wanted Troy to plead guilty for life without parole but not a possibility of any kind of appeal. Troy said he could not plead guilty for something he did not do. Because the first thing people would do is say, we know he did it.

It was not worth lying and saying you killed someone when you didn’t. It takes a lot out of a person to admit that you’re more willing to die than to admit that you did something wrong when you didn’t do it. So you know I have the utmost respect for Troy because Troy said if they are successful in killing me then don’t allow my death to be in vain. He said the barbaric practice of the death penalty, the state sanctioned killing of the innocent need to stop. The anti-terrorism and effective death penalty act of 1996 needs to be abolished because not only has it been instated in 1996 but President Bill Clinton made it retroactive 10 years, which is against international civil rights law. 

So Troy’s case should not have been affected by it anyway because his case happened in 1989. So they made this law retroactive so when the witnesses started coming forward and telling the truth Troy’s case never had a chance because they said, well we don’t have to listen to your actual innocence because of the anti-terrorism bill. So it’s like you don’t have a chance from the beginning. They tried to keep Troy voiceless by denying him access to the press, denying him access to any media outlets, any radio, any shows like that. They would threaten him with. We’ll take your family visitations away from you if you are caught taking to the press or the media.

CS: Well Troy couldn’t express remorse for something he didn’t do but I heard him express his sorrows for the family who lost their loved one and he actually said, "I hope you don’t let this end and actually get the real person who killed Officer McPhail but it wasn’t me."

MC: Exactly.

CS: And if I am correct wasn’t one of the witnesses that didn’t recant his accusations actually implicated in the murder himself?

MC: Could you repeat that question?

CS: Yes. One of the witnesses who did not recant his testimony against your brother was actually one of the people implicated in the murder and had everything to gain by…

MC: There was another witness Sylvester Coles who did not recant and he was the only one who actually had a weapon on the scene and he did not even tell police that he had a weapon on the scene. And when they asked him, why didn’t you tell us you had a weapon, he said, because I am a convicted felon and I am not supposed to have a weapon, and they asked him, what do you use your weapon for? And he said, it’s for protection. My question is protection from whom? So you know he drinks, he’s drunk; I don’t know what else he does. But I know he was the one that pointed the finger at Troy and up until then they had no knowledge of anyone who had shot the police officer.

When he went into the police station they didn’t know what was going on and then when he did come in there other witnesses including Larry Young who’s sister was saying, that’s the guy, that’s the guy right there that attacked me. The police officers said, oh no, you have the wrong guy he’s helping us with the investigation. So you know, it is what it is. But I mean how do you have more than one person in a parking lot where a police officer gets killed and you do not charge both people with accessory? You know you don’t charge the other person with accessory when they even lied about having a weapon and then when they ask where is your weapon? Oh I gave it to so and so. Well so and so say you didn’t give it to me. Oh I hid it in the bushes. Um oh I don’t know where it is and the next thing they say is oh I threw that gun away. There was never a subpoena to search their home or any of their private things to find the weapon. They didn’t really look very hard to find this weapon.

CS: I’ve noticed and you probably have more information on this than me but if a police officer gets killed somebody has to pay for it, somebody has to die and it doesn’t matter really if that person is guilty or innocent.

MC: Right.

CS: That’s one of the institutional inequalities that we have. I am from California and we had the Oscar Grant killing, a young black man got killed by the San Francisco PD for not paying bus fare and when there is killer cops they barely get a slap on the wrist.

MC: Right, you know that’s why we need to get rid of the death penalty because it’s a selective process. You know they give the death penalty to people who can’t fight back. I mean if you look at big serial killers and big people that get all the media attention and everything at the beginning of their trial you have lawyers lined up to defend them because it is going to be on television and it gives the lawyers an opportunity to be seen. Then you have people who don’t have lawyers. Don’t have the resources to pay for the lawyer and you’ll be the first to offer them a vehicle out of town or something.

CS: Right, it’s very hard to be a poor person of any color and get justice on our system. So this question is difficult for me sometimes when people ask me this question so if you don’t feel up to answering it. We all know Troy Anthony Davis as a symbol of anti-death penalty work, as somebody who courageously struggle against a system and we all know it is very hard to do that. But you became involved in this partially to say that Troy Davis is not just a symbol he is my brother, a person. So you made it a very personal struggle. If you feel up to it can you talk a little bit about Troy your brother?

MC: My brother was the type of person you know we lived in an upper middle class black neighborhood in Savannah. We had the 2 cars the boat, the fence, the house. We had both parents growing up so we were children that were very blessed. Troy was very shy everybody called him a mama’s boy including himself. Most of the time when you find Troy you find him at home. He’ll cut the grass, wash the dogs. I had a sister who was diagnosed at 13 with MS and Troy had left day school and enrolled in night school so when my sister got out of the hospital my mom wouldn’t have to miss work Troy would take care of my little sister and my brother. That’s what he did for a long time. He took care of them. He did my sisters hair and took her to therapy and things like that.

A lot of people don’t know that and they would put in the paper that Troy dropped out of school when he graduated with honors. There are pictures of him in the Savannah news press where he graduated with honors. We played football. We didn’t have soccer back them so he played baseball and football. When he got to be a teenager he helped out with the coaches as an assistant junior coach. We played ball for the police athletic league. We had the police athletic league in our neighborhood because the police actually ran it. He wanted to do something with the kids so that’s what he did. He got the kids a little league thing in the neighborhood and we played ball. People made a thing where he hated the police but we played ball with the police athletic league. Half of our subdivision was police officers.

Actually the present police chief lived around the corner. It was not like we were a bane on existence if Troy was he had probably been the juvenile and also the (undistinguishable). A lot of the things they put in the paper were not true. The Savannah news press, when a black person is accused of doing anything they put everything but your mothers social security number in the newspaper they try to degrade you. You’re convicted of everything before you ever go to court. Nobody pays any attention. They just read what’s in the paper and that’s pretty much about it. It’s really weird the way that they do that but Troy was always the type of person that believed in the ideals that my parents taught us, especially my father. You tell the truth and things will always work out right.

Well, he told the truth this time and it didn’t work out right. So I gave up my military career so I could make sure things work out right for him and it’s become a long struggle. A long fight and things like that. But Troy is the type of person that was very shy and we just had to get an adjustment to the things that was going on. So was the type of person where if he had a girlfriend he had one girlfriend they would be together for years. He wasn’t one person that would go from girl to girl to girl and all these other things. Troy was just a simple nice person. If he needed to cook dinner for my brothers and sisters he cooked dinner for my brothers and sisters. That’s what he did.

CS: How did he find himself in that situation to be accused of being a murdered?

MC: Could you repeat that?

CS: How did he find himself in that situation of being accused of being a murdered? Was he just in the wrong place at the wrong time?

MC: Troy was the type of person that would always help someone else. He was always kind of sticking his nose in where it didn’t belong to help someone else. So behind the garage door, the door was down or loose in the hinges and I guess when the police came barging in the doors that’s when our family kind of found out what was going on. But Troy had a car that my mom gave him and the transmission was going out so he would be home on the weekends and working in Atlanta during the weekdays at different construction sites making money because he was going into the Marine Corp. I was in the Army, my father was in the Army and Troy wanted to go into the Marine Corp. That’s why I actually had to come with him to fill out paperwork for physicals and stuff like that. 

So when he found out about it he called home and said there must be some kind of mistake. I’ll be home and I’ll go down there and answer some questions and tell them what’s going on and they’ll let me go. But they never interrogated Troy. Until the day Troy died the Savannah Police department never interrogated him. All they did was when he turned himself in all they asked him was where was his gun. He said he didn’t have a gun and they said where’s your gun? And he repeated, I don’t own a gun. Next thing I know they had him locked up and gave him an arraignment date and then they crucified him in the Savannah News Press.

CS: You’ve taken this personal tragedy and made it your personal quest and I’ve read that because of you and your work that hundreds of thousands of people have come to the anti-death penalty movement. Can you tell my listeners how they can become involved or more involved in that movement and especially in your quest for accountability?

MC: I was in the United States Army. I am a Gulf War Veteran of Desert Shield and Desert Storm. In order for me to help my brother I had to give up my military career. I never expected to have to do that but I was willing to do that to save my brothers life. It was really amazing because I wanted to help my brother and I specifically asked him, did you do this, did you have anything else to do with this? And he said, of course not. He said I didn’t have anything to do with this man being killed. He said not today, not yesterday, not tomorrow. He said I wouldn’t lie about that because Troy was a junior deacon and that church and he said I could not take anybodies life and so you know he said if I had to do it because I was in the military then that would be my job but to randomly shoot somebody over a can of beer. Because he was trying to stop a homeless man from being pistol-whipped.

I mean if somebody stole your bicycle in the neighborhood Troy would go to the person and say look, I will give you 10 dollars just give the child his bicycle back. I mean he was a peacemaker. He wasn’t a person who was an agitator or a fighter or whatever. I mean people had respect for Troy. Even when he went to jail people had respect for Troy. And they always did until he got this last warden who was so nasty to Troy we couldn’t figure out why he was so nasty to Troy? Troy has been there twenty years and has not gotten into any trouble and suddenly he has gotten a new warden and suddenly he has gotten this meanest man on the planet. The warden and them were trying to agitate him but he wouldn’t allow that. Troy was a very prayerful and faithful person he believes strongly in his faith and he believed that was going to carry him through. Troy did not try to cause problems with the system. Troy wanted to find more about his case he read every detail and all the statements to try and help himself so that he would be up on his case.

CS: How can people help you in your cause?

MC: They can go to Amnesties website and they can out in Troy’s name in the search engine. It’ll have all the things that we are doing and the things that we will be doing. They can text the word Troy to 90999. They can go on the national NAACP website They can go on Troy’s website and any of thee things they can find out ways to help Troy Davis and Troy also has a Face Book I think it has all his information on there. And he can tell them what their doing. They can go and do different things. They can come up with there own things. We are working on legislation to get rid of the death penalty in Georgia and in the South.

We’re trying to expose the old laws we have here because it seems to me that ever since Obama became president that we’ve had some other issues in the city and then Troy’s case has been so out there in the public that a lot of the old time racist comments that people thought were dead and gone they’ve just been hidden. People are saying all kinds of vile things not just about Troy but about other people and it’s really amazing because I wonder how these people go sit in their place of worship and then they are still spouting racism. It’s kind of like it never went away. It just subsided. I never thought in this day and time I would have an argument with my child’s teacher about the way my child is being treated because a teacher does not like my brother and I have had to come across that in the last couple of years and that’s very sad.

There’s many ways to get involved and I just tell people to stand up where they are even if they develop their own system for getting involved. Writing letters to the president, writing letters to Eric Holder and asking them for a judicial investigation into the circuit, There are various things that can be done and we are just asking people to get involved and find out what we are doing and don’t allow Troy’s death to be in vain and we need to continue to work on this issue.

CS: Thank you Martina and thank you for your strength and you courage too. My last question is how are you holding up. I know you are also battling cancer and personally I know this is a very emotionally draining time for you. How are you doing?

MC: Actually I am doing fine. I was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in 2001 and I was given 6 months then. I am actually in remission. A lot of people think that I am having all these problems with cancer and that but I am in remission and the problems I am having is not necessarily with having cancer but with the side effects from the medication that you take to prevent cancer from coming back. That’s the thing I have been fighting so my thing is taking chemo for 10 years even though it is a small dose has had it’s effect on your body and things like that. But other than that I am in remission, I am doing well I just have to battle the symptoms of cancer and cancer related illnesses. So that’s what I am working on now. So tell people the thing is I take poison so I can live. They gave my brother poison so they can kill him. There should be something wrong with that picture.

CS: Well I know that there is a lot of hatred and racism in this world but I hope you do also feel the love and support and are able to draw some strength from that.

MC: I will.

CS: Okay Martina Correia thank you for being on Cindy Sheehan’s soapbox.

MC: Thank you.


My October 15th Remarks at Occupy Sacramento

Mugshot from my arrest
later that night.

Hello, it’s great to finally be able to be here with you today—I have been out of the state, but I have been watching you on the local news and you have been doing a great job!
The other day, on my Facebook wall, one of my “friends” asked me when I was going to, “Join the 99%.”

“Join the 99%?” I didn’t know that was an option! I “joined” the 99% 54 years ago when I was born down in L.A. I am just excited the other 99.9999% is beginning to wake up to the fact the plutocracy here in the U.S,. and globally, declared class war against us generations ago and WE are starting to fight back—finally!

Well, I live not too far down the road in that liberal mecca of free thinking, communists: Vacaville. I am just, unfortunately kidding, of course, because just being a Democrat is considered subversive there and I am telling you this to tell you about something that happened to me this morning.

I went to exercise class at my gym and one of my fellow exercisers came up to me and whispered: “Have you been to that ‘nonsense’ in Sacramento.”

I told her, “As a matter of fact I am going there to speak and march today—and it’s not ‘nonsense,’ people have legitimate gripes with the government.”

So she said, “Oh, I was just kidding because I think it’s great because it’s the only thing that will put Obama back in the White House.”

So, that comment started an entire new conversation.

This movement should not allow itself to be co-opted by partisan political hackery. If Obama or Democrats were the answer, then, guess what? We wouldn’t be here today. The wars would be over; the 99% would have single-payer health care, housing, education, a sustainable energy policy, and meaningful jobs with a livable wage as RIGHTS not PRIVILEGES for the 1%. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want Republicans in power either—I want US in power. Just like we are today, but I want we the people calling the shots in a meaningful way that changes corrupt and harmful policies, and that will take not only going out of the parks and into the streets like we are today, but staying there and taking breaks to strategize about the society we want to build: One where the resources of our country are used to guarantee basic human rights to EVERYONE, not just the one-percenters.

Speaking of the wars, the Obama (president to the one-percent) regime has continued the Bush crime cabals' wars and has added at least five more military miss-excursions on top of those: in Libya, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and now Uganda—make no mistake about it, the US is waging World War Three in its global war OF terror around the world and the economic and social justice we seek cannot be achieved without complete and unconditional peace. 

Just here in our state of California, our “wonderful” Democrat Governor, Jerry Brown, has forced cuts in essential services and exorbitant and unfair increases to university fees, while California has sent 148 billion dollars to the US government for its war OF terror—that’s almost 15 billion a year for the past insane 10 years.

According to the Cost of War website, here in Sacramento County, you all have contributed over five billion to the illegal and immoral wars. Can any of you think what Sacramento could have done with five billion dollars, or the state with 148 billion?

And young people—I am so glad to see you all here—like I said, I have been watching you on the local news and I have been impressed—for every dollar your college fees get raised, the state is able to give it to the federal government for its war OF terror against the world and its economic terrorism here at home. Even though this nation has always been by and for the so-called elite; since we’ve embarked on these wars, it has become far worse and things are getting dire here in our class.

After the bi-partisan bailout of the banks and Wall Street in 2008, I wrote a book called Myth America: 20 Greatest Myths of the Robber Class and the Case for Revolution where I outlined the problem and called for a grassroots revolution to fix it.

We not only need a movement in the streets, but we need to realize that our local problems are magnified globally and the only answer to this greedy globalism is localism. We need to work to take very doable and effective local actions to create a healthy economy and sustainable ecology for us, our children and our grandchildren, if we have them.

One of the myths I dispel in my book, is the one that everyone here in the USA has an equal opportunity for wealth and to be in the one-percent. Not only is that bullshit, but it’s criminal. Our parents and grandparents had money, their labor and their lands stolen from them as our ancesters farther back stole the land from our indigenous peoples. The one-percent are wealthy because of murder and exploitation and if that’s the price we have to pay to be in the one-percent, I, for one, don’t want to pay it.

John Steinbeck (another Californian), famously said: ““Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” I don’t want to be like the one-percent, I want them to be like us. Justice demands income equality and the Robber Class has been getting away with this unearned privilege for far too long. 

I am happy that this movement is “leaderless,” but I think it’s dangerous for it to be directionless, because I know that there will be forces swooping in to claim it as a movement for Democrats—Democrats are not friends of peace, or the working class, and they are just one-half of the political problem in a Capitalist paradigm that doesn’t care about you—it only cares about power and profit.

We care about ourselves and we care about each other, the Robber Class doesn’t. Take care of yourselves and take care of each other and the way to make true change that works for everyone is by keeping power in our hands; whether it’s in our schools, workplaces, or communities.

Reform is code for “loopholes for the one-percent,” so let’s make this a revolution.