Monday, January 30, 2012

Revolution, A Love Story available on KINDLE.

Roseanne Barr for President? Sure, why not?

Comedian, Roseanne Barr, who had a successful, long running show on corporate media, portraying a working-class mother, wife, and small business owner, has made known her desire to attain the presidential nomination for the Green Party, USA.


In the last election, I supported the Green Party candidate, Cynthia McKinney and her running mate, Rosa Clemente. Unfortunately, the Party is not entirely functional (which party is?), even if many of us do support its 10 Key Principles.


I have also been impressed by the other woman seeking the nomination, Jill Stein--she is bright, articulate, well-informed, truly progressive and dedicated to public service--but if push came to shove, I would support Roseanne. 


Many people have a misperception about Roseanne, but she came to San Francisco to support my campaign when I ran against Nancy Pelosi in 2008 and I have had a chance to meet with her, hang out with her and interview her a couple of times on my radio show. She is also bright, articulate, well-informed, even more progressive, and even though she is not a member of the 99%, she knows our tune and can sing our hearts.


I have heard rumors from GP insiders that Barr is not a "serious candidate," but I can also attest to the fact that she is a very introspective and thoughtful person that would not be doing this if she were not, "in it to win it."


To really change things for the better for the 99%, I am convinced that we need a united leftwing worker's party instead of so many different factions of basically the same program and that will take working our fingers to the bone between elections--not just every four years presenting a few different candidates. Personally, I have not decided whom to support (if anyone) in this rigged Federal Electoral Industrial Complex sham of "free elections," (I am slightly more interested in Venezuela's elections in October), but I can tell you one thing for sure: this One Party politburo that infests and infects the halls of power needs to be stood on its head and kicked in the ass and Rosie is the person to do it, if ever there was one. 


If I do cast a meaningless vote in the sham elections, it will be for a 3rd party or independent candidate--however, I would be pleased to cast my meaningless vote for Roseanne Barr. At least I will be voting for someone I like whose values conform perfectly with mine and I will be able to come home from the polls and look at myself in the mirror. Voting against the cystem may not present us with viable change right now, but it does send a message to said cystem. 


Vote for Roseanne, then spend the next four years building on the momentum of the Occupy movement to organize a viable First Party to challenge capitalism at its core. 


Please listen to the Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox 100th anniversary show that we presented with Roseanne Barr.


Click the pic to listen
Cindy and Roseanne in San Francisco in 2008





Sunday, January 29, 2012

A Voice of Truth in the Belly of the Beast


Foreword to Revolution, A Love Story
(ordering info below)

A Voice of Truth in the Belly of the Beast

By Eva Golinger


I first met Cindy Sheehan when she came to Caracas in January 2006 for the World Social Forum. An event of that size and stature had never taken place in Venezuela before as Caracas became the host to tens of thousands of international guests immersed in a frenzy of politics, activism, debate, dissent, and revolution. Of all the distinguished, admired, and well known attendees, Cindy was at the top of the list.

President Hugo Chávez had spoken highly and often about Cindy Sheehan, praising her brave fight against the Bush administration and her fervent opposition to the war in Iraq, which had caused the death of her son, Casey. Before Cindy Sheehan ever came to Venezuela, the people of this South American nation had heard her name many times. We knew of her political transformation after Casey died and her unwavering commitment to peace and justice. We’d heard of her valiantly defying President George W. Bush by setting up “Camp Casey” outside his Texas ranch, demanding the United States president answer for his crimes, and advocating for an end to war. President Chávez invoked Cindy Sheehan as a symbol of good-hearted, honest people in the United States willing to risk their lives to fight injustice, despite the arrogance and hostility emanating from the US government.

So when Cindy first came to Caracas, she was in high demand by Venezuelan media. The host of one of the country’s most watched morning programs, Ernesto Villegas, contacted me about interviewing Cindy during her stay in Venezuela. While I had never met the Peace Mom personally, I figured the world of revolutionaries from the United States isunfortunatelysmall enough, so I must know someone close to her. I was right and Cindy kindly agreed to do the live interview.

Since I had helped arrange the interview, I accompanied Cindy to the special television studio, which had been set up outside the main venue of the World Social Forum. The program host was ecstatic with Cindy’s presence, particularly after conducting many shows on Washington’s illegal war against Iraq, and referring often to the US peace movement and Cindy’s own battle against Bush. One minor logistical detail had gone overlooked: Cindy did not speak Spanish and the show’s host did not speak English.

While I am not a translator by profession, I have found myself serving in such a capacity numerous times over the past decade, especially when it comes to Venezuela. I have spontaneously been whisked into the role of translator to interpret discussions and interviews for President Hugo Chávez during his many trips to New York or when visitors have come to Venezuela from the United States. And, I have also now had the unexpected honor of translating for Cindy Sheehan during her various visits to Venezuela.

So, I was Cindy Sheehan’s translator during her first live television interview in Venezuela. As I translated her responses to questions about the war against Iraq, Bush administration policies and violations of the US Constitution, and issues relating to social justice, I felt as though the answers were coming from me. (Don’t worry Cindy, I really did translate you). The words flowed from her with a sincerity, honesty, and frankness in a way that I hadn’t heard from a US person in a long time.

That same sincere, honest, and direct tone shines throughout her dialogue with readers in this book, Revolution: A Love Story. Cindy’s honesty is what sets her apart from many others in the United States who, while disagreeing with Bush’s and now Obama’spolicies, dare not to raise their voices or speak their minds for fear of reprisal. And Cindy’s fearlessness is what terrified President George W. Bush, and Washington defenders, and turned her into a role model for justice and peace seekers around the world.

Four years after my first job as translator for Cindy Sheehan, I was surprised into the role again, but this time it wasn’t for live television, it was with President Chávez.

When Cindy decided she wanted to make a documentary film and write a book on Venezuela’s Revolution and she contacted me for advice, I was more than eager to help. Cindy Sheehan has been a solid, powerful ally for Venezuela’s Bolivarian Revolution and President Chávez for many years, despite the attacks, threats, and criticisms she has had to bear.

Cindy’s voice, as it flows throughout the following pages, serenades readers with her stories and experiences inside Venezuela as a witness to the vibrant process of transformation taking place. The greatest value in Cindy’s words is precisely that they come from her own personal experiences. Instead of believing what media said about Venezuela and President Chávez, Cindy came to find out for herself. She met with different people and heard their stories and testimonies. She went into their communities and witnessed their lives, seeing with her own eyes whether things were better or worse. Cindy has seen, touched, and breathed the Bolivarian Revolution. She speaks truth from experience.

I didn’t hesitate to help when Cindy requested an interview with President Chávez for this important project. Arrangements were made and Cindy soon set foot once again in the land of Simón Bolívar. I accompanied Cindy during her brief stay in Caracas (where I reside) in late February 2010, and we visited some of the amazing achievements of the Revolution. Despite her fear of heights, she rode in the newly inaugurated MetroCable in the San Agustin neighborhood of Caracas.

The cable car was the first of a series being built by the Chávez administration throughout the Caracas metropolitan area, which is flanked by steep hills and mountain ranges covered in hard-to-reach makeshift homes, primarily occupied by the poor and working class. The MetroCable was a lifesaver to many in San Agustin, which is one of Caracas’ oldest and primarily Afro-Venezuelan neighborhoods. Built and run by workers from the community and paid for by the state, it services thousands who previously had to walk miles up steep and dangerous roads and steps built in the hillsides, or take shoddy jeeps and vans posing as “public transport” up the mountain, until they could go no further and the only way to proceed was on foot. The elderly and disabled rarely left their homes before the MetroCable was installed.

Cindy bore witness to this transformative project created by the Bolivarian Revolution, seeing and hearing how it changed community members’ lives dramatically. Not only were their daily lives made easier by the new and innovative transport system, but it also brought dignity and pride to their community. They built it, they run it, and they are no longer overlooked or ignored by those in power or those with more money. The MetroCable of San Agustin is emblematic of the way President Hugo Chávez’s leadership and the Bolivarian Revolution have changed Venezuela forever.

The millions of invisible people in Venezuela are now visible. The millions silenced before now have a voice, and they speak loud and clear. Participatory democracy is a wonderful thing.

When it came time for Cindy to interview President Chávez, he invited her to accompany him on a trip to Montevideo, Uruguay, for the historical inauguration of newly-elected President José “Pepe” Mujica, a former guerrilla fighter and political prisoner who had been tortured, imprisoned, and shot over a dozen times in the 1970s.

Chávez is known for preferring to do interviews with foreign press while flying or during an international trip. He’s so overly-dedicated to his work for the Venezuelan people and the future of Venezuela that he feels there is no time to spare for any other activities while in-country. So he squeezes in the interviews on long plane trips, or during brief moments between events while in another country, where often he has less control over his own agenda.

I happened to attend an event where President Chávez was speaking on the day of Cindy’s arrival to Caracas, and at the end of his intervention, I caught up with him and reminded him Cindy would be in town for a few days before the Uruguay trip. I told him she was doing a documentary on the Revolution and so I’d be taking her around to several communities to meet with different grassroots organizations and dialogue with community activists. “Tell her: Welcome to Venezuela! for me.” he responded. “Oh, and then you should come with us, too, to Uruguay”, he quickly added as an aside.

It wasn’t until we were on the presidential aircraft two days later heading to Montevideo that I realized I would once again be translator for Cindy and President Chávez. Even more surprisingly, I ended up being Bolivian President Evo Morales’ translator too after he appeared unexpectedly in the middle of Cindy’s interview with Chávez!

And even though translating is not my profession, I have been more than honored to be Cindy Sheehan’s interpreter, however many times are necessary.

Revolution: A Love Story provides readers with an easy-to-read background of Washington’s interventionist policies in Latin America and the rise of Revolution south of the border. Cindy’s words flow as though she’s talking right to you, sharing this tale over strong black Venezuelan coffee, or a delicious glass of Argentine Malbec. She provides a brief, but necessary, summary of Venezuela’s contemporary history and explains how and why the Bolivarian Revolution exists, and who the charismatic and soulful man who leads it really is.

Cindy weaves in testimonies, quotes, and excerpts of interviews with a range of important and knowledgeable voices that not only provide insight into Venezuela’s reality, but also help deconstruct US foreign and domestic policy.

I know why this book is called Revolution: A Love Story.

While you, the reader, may have only heard about Venezuela and President Chávez through international media, which tells high tales of dictatorships, human rights violations, tyrants, political prisoners, censorship, violent crime, narco-traffickers, and terrorists, I have lived in the dynamic, inclusive, open, participatory democracy in Venezuela. I have had the privilege of participating in the numerous transparent, efficient, and free electoral processes over the past decade, the majority of which Chávez and his party have won by landslide victories. I have been a face amongst the crowds of millions that frequently rally, march, and celebrate the extraordinary achievements of the Bolivarian Revolution and the policies enacted by President Hugo Chávez. Yes, Venezuelans don’t just protest when they are unhappy, they also take to the streets to show support for positive advances and gains, evidencing the people’s ongoing and important role in government.

While mass media portray President Hugo Chávez as a dictator, or an enraged demon, or a clown or a terrorist, I know the man with the largest heart I’ve ever seen. I know the man who listens to the older woman who grabs his arm and pulls him close, telling him of her woes; the man who hugs a young pregnant woman, gently cradling her belly, promising to ensure her the best care possible; the man who orders his caravan to stop on the side of the road while he rescues a stray, limping dog; the man who has given his life, his heart, and his soul to his people and his homeland and pledged to do everything in his power to help build a proud, sovereign, grandiose, and dignified nation.

And while most media ignore the millions of Venezuelans struggling to free themselves from centuries of cultural, economic, and political colonization, fighting to rescue their own identity and self-respect and to transform their country into a prosperous and flourishing nation, I know this kind, humble people that are the backbone of one of the greatest and most inspiring revolutions of our time.

During the Washington-backed coup d’etat in April 2002 that briefly and violently ousted President Chávez from powerdemolishing the country’s democratic institutions and plummetting the nation into a repressive dictatorship installed by the old school eliteit wasn’t anger that drove millions into the streets to fight back, it was love. It was love for the true freedom that had just began to blossom with the onset of the Bolivarian Revolution in 1999. It was love for the vibrant, active, and inclusive democracy being built by, for, and of the people. It was love for the dream of an independent, sovereign, and socially prosperous Patria Grande that was being attained. And it was love for the person who had given everything of himself to forge this path that in turn made the people risk their lives to rescue him from the hands of death.

As Uncle Sam sneered, President Hugo Chávez was saved by the millions of Venezuelans who poured into the streets on April 13, 2002 to fight back against the US-funded and supported coup. His life was rescued from the point of assassination by the humble, noble majority of Venezuelans who fought against the world’s most powerful empire, armed with nothing but dignity and love. And they won. We won.

That love, as cheesy as it may sound, has been the guiding force of the Bolivarian Revolution throughout the past decade. It’s the same force that has created a government of People’s Power, where social justice reigns and people’s needs are prioritized over profits. It’s not perfectthere are many problems and goals yet to be achieved. There have been many mistakes along the way, and there are many more errors to be made. Building a better world is not an easy thing.

Venezuela’s Revolution does not pretend to copy or be like any other, nor does it pretend to have all the answers already drawn up. We are building block upon block, and sometimes on circles or triangles. It is a patient, human process that accepts its errors, learns from them, and continues moving forward.

As powerful as love is, the threats against Venezuela and President Chávez are numerous and scary. Washington has been waging an aggressive campaignwhich could be considered a form of warfareagainst the Chávez administration for over a decade. The Obama administration has intensified hostility against Venezuela, channeling even more millions of US taxpayer dollars to the anti-Chávez opposition and attempting to include Venezuela on its “state sponsors of terrorism” list in order to justify military intervention. Sanctions have been imposed against Venezuela by the White House and countless statements have been made by State Department spokespeople intending to intimidate and pressure the Venezuelan government so it succumbs to Washington’s agenda.

There are critical presidential elections in Venezuela in October 2012. President Chávez is a candidate for reelection. In addition to confronting the external threats from Washington and the internal destabilization attempts executed by opposition forces, Chávez is battling the most powerful enemy he’s ever had: Cancer. While the Venezuelan President has recovered impressively from a cancerous tumor extracted from his pelvic region in June 2011, his health will continue to be a battleground.

Revolution: A Love Story is a critical book to read for people around the world, but especially those in the United States. Deconstructing the dangerous myths about Venezuela is essential to preserving not only the integrity of a nation and a political process, but also the lives of millions of people. We all saw how fast a leader was demonized in mass media, stories of atrocities were spun, bombs began, thousands were killed, a nation was destroyed, and its leader assassinated in the case of Libya.

It horrifies me to remember that, just months before the war against Libya began, I had accompanied President Chávez on a trip to Tripoli, where we met with Muammar al-Gaddafi. We walked the streets of a peaceful nation and saw children playing in parks, people going shopping, families taking walks. It’s sickening to realize just days later, they were killed and maimed by US bombs, in the name of freedom.

It terrifies me to think the same thing could happen in Venezuela. The same thing could happen anywhere.

Voices of truth, voices like Cindy Sheehan’s, are essential to prevent these barbaric acts from reoccurring.  Thank you, Cindy, for your fearlessness, for your honesty, and for your love.

Eva Golinger
Caracas, Venezuela
2012




Venezuela
Eva Golinger, winner of the International Award for Journalism in Mexico (2009), named “La Novia de Venezuela” by President Hugo Chávez, is an Attorney and Writer from New York, living in Caracas, Venezuela since 2005 and author of the best-selling books, “The Chávez Code: Cracking US Intervention in Venezuela” (2006 Olive Branch Press), “Bush vs. Chávez: Washington’s War on Venezuela” (2007, Monthly Review Press), “The Empire’s Web: Encyclopedia of Interventionism and Subversion”, “La Mirada del Imperio sobre el 4F: Los Documentos Desclasificados de Washington sobre la rebelión militar del 4 de febrero de 1992” and "La Agresión Permanente: USAID, NED y CIA". Since 2003, Eva, a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College and CUNY Law School in New York, has been investigating, analyzing and writing about US intervention in Venezuela using the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain information about US Government efforts to undermine progressive movements in Latin America. Her first book, The Chávez Code, has been translated and published in 8 languages (English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Russian, Farsi & Turkish) and is presently being made into a feature film.

CLICK HERE FOR ORDERING INFO FOR
REVOLUTION, A LOVE STORY

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Buy your copies of Dear President Bush by Cindy Sheehan







After Camp Casey in the
summer of 2005, a naive antiwar
activist, Cindy Sheehan,
sat down for an interview with
journalist, Greg Ruggiero, and the
result became this pamphlet from
Open Media called:
Dear President Bush.
Now, Cindy never would have
chosen that name, if she was in
charge of the title, it probably would
have been something like:
Hey, George.


Anyway, as a way to support the
work of Cindy Sheehan and the
Soapbox, signed (by Cindy) copies
of this pamphlet are being offered.

It's a good way to support impor-
tant work, but to also see how
Cindy's activism and political
philosophy have developed over all
these years.

The cost for one is: $5 plus $3 S&H

If you purchase multiple copies,
though, The Soapbox will pay
S&H while supplies last.

Click the image for ordering info.




Amount of Books



Or send a CHECK/MONEY ORDER TO:

CINDY SHEEHAN'S SOAPBOX, LLC
PO BOX 6264
VACAVILLE, CA 95696



Friday, January 20, 2012

The BP Plague; Soapbox from 12/19/10

The BP Plague.  -  December 19, 2010 (SOAPBOX #79) - Cindy welcomes FOUR guests (count them!) in this year-ending blowout, all discussing the ever-spreading BP Plague, still destroying our Gulf Coast.  First up is Karen Mayer Hopkins.  She is Treasurer of Gulf Change, an environmental group from within the Gulf Seafood Industry.  Next is Mac MacKenzie, founder of NOLA Emergency Response (http://www.nolaer.org/), who purchased 3 lbs. of Gulf Shrimp and had their digestive tracts tested for contaminants. She found 193 PPM of organic matter and hydrocarbons and then corroborated that by other tests.  She therefore warns us that the seafood sill isn't safe to eat.  She's followed by Trisha Springstead, RN - a Medical Research Professional with a web site at morgellonsreport.com.  Trish discusses the effects and biochemical results of all this ignored oil and dispersant brew.  She proceeds onwards from there.  Cindy completes her power play with Medical Professional, activist and organizer - Anita Stewart, who also delves into the real-world consequences of this un-acknowledged disaster.  


Please, Use the link above to learn of this hidden plague!





CLICK THE ABOVE LINK TO MAKE A TAX-DEDUCTIBLE ONLINE DONATION TO
CINDY SHEEHAN'S SOAPBOX




Tuesday, January 17, 2012

"Love it, or leave it" v. "Loathe it and stay to fight it" by Cindy Sheehan

"Love it, or leave it" vs. "Loathe it and Stay to Fight it"
January 17, 2012


Cindy Sheehan


On January 2nd, I spoke at the rally after our Occupy the Rose Parade protest. There were at least 2,000 activists who formed a contingent at the end of the Rose Parade to protest an alphabet soup of outrages. I was there to represent the antiwar element.


I am not just an antiwar activist, I am a peacemonger--being a peacemonger goes far beyond just being "against" wars. Being a peacemonger means connecting an almost infinite number of dots to try and figure out why it seems this nation is in almost constant war because it's so difficult to stop wars once the 1% start them. It's so hard to try and put all of the pieces together and to make sense out of the hodgepodge of crimes and behind the scenes hanky-panky, but one thing I do know--wars can't be fought without an almost bottomless reserve of cash.


During my speech at the OTRP protest, I stated that I did not pay my income taxes and the response from some rightwing knee-jerkers was swift, divorced from reality (as always) and boorish. 


A video of my speech, entitled something like, "Cindy Sheehan admits that she doesn't pay her taxes" was even posted at the "leftwing" (I can't type that with a straight face) Huffington Post and the comments were also divorced from reality and boorish and can be summarized thusly: 


"Other people have lost their sons in the wars, what gives her the right to evade her taxes?" (Tax resistance is a moral principle that should be decided by each and every individual--and I would dare to say that most bereaved parents support the wars, anyway. For example, even though he opposes the wars, Casey's father has chosen to pay his taxes, that's not my problem or my business).


"I used to support Cindy Sheehan, but this is stealing." (I would steal to feed my grand-babies without a second thought, but I feel that not paying for the mega-crimes of my government is a far lesser crime and that this Empire murders, tortures and/or economically oppresses millions of people each and every day).


"Cindy Sheehan sounds like a Tea-Bagger." (This accusation amuses me. I think most "Tea-Baggers" are tax-paying, gun-toting, law-abiding citizens who like to whine about "big government" without actually doing anything about it. I am not against all forms of government, but I am certainly against this one we have today. I don't tote a gun and I think it's a moral imperative to "break" laws that hurt people. I have a higher law, and that's Peace).


"Taxes pay for good things like roads, bridges, libraries, Social Security and Medicare." (First of all, let's say that our roads and bridges aren't falling apart; and that libraries, schools, Social Security and Medicare are not being robbed of funding--when I do drive, I pay gas taxes and bridge tolls. I also pay sales tax, park fees, and many other varieties of taxes and fees for things I actually do use. At least 54% of federal expenditures are to pay for current wars or to service debt on past wars. If my tax money would go to single-payer health care,  fully-funded schools and other social programs, etc--I would gladly pay. However, even if I decided to pay 46% of my taxes, would I be guaranteed that not one thin dime of mine would be going to kill someone? I think war profiteering has first claim on any money here in the dis-United Empire of the Earth).


"The IRS should put her in prison." (The IRS is not a law enforcement or adjudication agency. They are a collection agency--collecting for the most gargantuan crime syndicate in history).


To be sure, interspersed amongst the ignorance and hate, there were some comments in support of my protest, but I would like to iterate here, that I am not a "tax evader" and I have been very open and honest about my tax protest every since I embarked upon it. How can this Empire be put on trial? Obama has blocked prosecution of Bush administration officials as his DOJ is targeting activists, whistle blowers, and, worst of all, his CIA is bombing children with his hell-fire missiles.


So, today I had meeting numero dos with a low-level bureaucratic functionary at the local IRS office and the next step for me may be court to try and force me to produce my financial statement, which I did not do today. 


I found it very instructive that, even though I was sitting right there in the room next to my attorney, the revenue officer referred to me often as, "The Taxpayer." I had to bite almost clean through my tongue to ask him if he calls every person, "The Taxpayer." Here in the good ol' USA, we have been reduced to either, "Taxpayers," or "consumers," never, "citizens." We are conditioned from birth to feed our masters, toil for them, and care about them before we care for our own flesh and blood. We pay, they profit. We go into debt, they horde. We work, they benefit. We lose, they win. And "They" are not accustomed to any questioning or resistance to their orders or ordered ways of life. What is now referred to as the "1%" feel entitled to our money and our labor and the problem is that 99% of the 99% also feel that the 1% is entitled to THEIR money and THEIR labor.


Today, the revenue officer admitted that they are just looking for assets to confiscate from me. Even in the years that they are trying to collect 105k in back taxes, fines, and interest, I re-invested most of the money I ever made by speaker's fees, donations, or book sales right back into the movement. Now, I intentionally live simply and don't own anything the establishment considers of value. If the IRS goes looking for my assets, they will not find anything. If I had some kind of secret trust fund, I certainly wouldn't be scraping by for rent money every month.


I followed the advice of my new attorney (who is not a tax attorney, but he is working with one who is and who is an adviser from the National War Tax Resister's Coordinating Committee), I didn't speak during the entire meeting, but when the revenue officer said that the tax lien that has been recorded with the county clerk is going to "hurt my credit," I had to stifle a guffaw.


As stated, I don't own anything and I don't want or even need to own anything that the 1% tells me that I need to own to make my life "worthwhile." I have had to pare my life down to one that is oriented, not around things, but around ideas, people, activism, peace and mostly, love. These are things that can't be purchased with a predatory credit card charging high fees, exorbitant over-limit penalties, and usurious interest rates--but they are things that really give my life meaning and which are indispensable to me.


My son, who was killed in just one of this nation's illegal and immoral wars had priceless value to me, too--and you know what? So does everyone else killed, maimed, tortured, beaten, or otherwise oppressed by the country I was born in and choose to stay in because the people I love the most live here. 


Just as The Troops ® (Registered Trademark exploited to justify war expenditures and jingoistic patriotism)who have moral opposition to any imperial war of choice, should not have to choose to be imprisoned in a Gray Bar Hotel or be trapped in a war zone--I (in answer to my kneejerker critics) should not have to "love it, or leave it." I choose to "loathe it and stay" and by the example of my actions try and make this nation a place to be proud of where the national priority is to enhance life not to destroy it.












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CINDY SHEEHAN'S SOAPBOX

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Buy-Buy Myth American Pie


Buy-Buy Myth American Pie
(Afterword to Myth America II)
January 21, 2010
Cindy Sheehan



"The roses in the window box
Have tilted to one side
Everything about this house
Was born to grow and die"
-Elton John, "Funeral for a Friend (Love Lies Bleeding)"

"I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations which dare already to challenge our government in a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country."
-Thomas Jefferson

I find it super-ironic that I am writing the very last words to Myth America II on the day that any semblance to the US being "by and for the people" died.

The publication of this book has been delayed by so many urgent events--Obama goes on a $50k/week vacation to Martha's Vineyard (August 20009) while war rages on--Obama escalates troop presence in Afghanistan, not once, not twice, but THRREE times--Obama approves expanding military and CIA unmanned aerial vehicle bombings--Obama is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize--Senator Kennedy dies and the Dems lose big time in Massachussets!

I know I am leaving out so many things (note--especially the many things that happened after Jan 2010)--like the Obama regime covering up the murder of three detainees in Gitmo and protecting the Bush Administration and following in the footsteps of the Bush regime by fomenting hostilities with Venezuela and Iran.

Then after the people of Haiti suffer a devastating earthquake, Obama appoints George Bush to lead US relief efforts. Obama's first year was quite a busy, busy year that wasn't so much about CHANGE as it was about tying a cement block around HOPE and drowning it in the Potomac River.

I had a busy 2009, too--because as Obama climbed to new lows of thuggery--I met him there to challenge him (and you). As one of the only people, who from the beginning, criticized the Dalai Bama, I have been shunned and scorned, but also welcomed to many places where truth, peace and justice are still valuable commodities.

Anyway, today was a landmark day in US history--and even though this book is finished--WE MUST add an addendum about this.

No matter what happens tomorrow: If the Bra Bomber finally materializes, or Obama gets caught in a compromising position with Tiger Woods, or if Michelle is caught growing weed in her organic garden (then, I would think she's cool): THIS BOOK IS FINISHED--and so might be my country.

We have talked about the scandal of corporate personhood and how two sentences from Supreme Court Chief Justice Waite, before the oral arguments were even heard in the 1886 case of The City and County of Santa Clara v. The Southern Pacific Railroad changed our history forever:

"The court does not wish to hear arguments on the question whether the provision in the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which forbids a State to deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws, applies to these corporations. We are all of the opinion that it does."

No law has ever been passed giving corporations rights, not just privileges--no Supreme Court decision in the past ever gave Goldman Sachs literally millions of more votes than me--it was just a freaking statement before the hearing ever began! We are losing everything because some old dead white guy flapped his jaws and "voila" the Fourteenth Amendment applies to corporations.

Today, in Citizens United v. The Federal Election's Commission, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that any cap put on corporations and, presumably union and other organizations, to spend on campaign ads and other campaign expenses violates a corporation's "Freedom of Speech" which has been illegally protected for 134 years. Like I pointed out in the Myth that Elections Matter--our system is already rigged in favor of the Robber Class--corporations HAVE NO MOUTHS, how can the paper entities have free speech?

This expansion (not granting) of "Free Speech" to corporations effectively kills Robbed Class "Free Speech" when it comes to elections.

Money is what buys influence with our government--that's all, nothing else. We ain't got no money, so we ain't got no influence.

The only tool we have left to us is Revolution as JFK said: "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible, make violent revolution inevitable."

Peace, Resistance and Revolution
From NYC
January 21, 2010

January 15, 2012: Note from Cindy--Myth America II: 20 Greatest Myths of the Robber Class and the Case for Revolution, ended with these words that I wrote from NYC in 2010. Little did I know that in September 2011,  the Occupy Wall Street movement would spring up not far from where I wrote those words. I am posting a re-print of this article because I am working on a new piece called: Occupy Myth, to analyze the Occupy movement and how we can use that movement and the suggestions of grassroots democracy and community building that I advocated in Myth America to actually effect healthy and meaningful change for us.



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Friday, January 13, 2012

What Kind of Extremist Will You Be?



(note from Cindy: This article was adapted from a speech I gave at the historic Riverside Church in NYC on April 04, 2005---one year after my son's death and 32 years after Dr. King's assassination).

What Kind of Extremist Will You Be?

by Cindy Sheehan
  
Early morning, April 04, a shot rings out in the Memphis sky,
Free at last, they asked for your life, But they could not take your pride.
In the name of love, one more in the name of love.
-
-U2: Pride (In the name of love)



Most everyone who is reading this knows what happened to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on April 04, 1968. Some of you may even know what happened to my son, Spc. Casey Austin Sheehan on April 04, 2004. If you don't know, Dr King and Casey were murdered by the same malevolent entities: People and ideologies that say that we have to be mortally afraid of the "ism" du jour and we, as Americans who have the "moral high-ground" in the world can send our innocent children to invade innocent countries and kill innocent people to fight the "ists" that go with the "isms." In Vietnam we were fighting the evil Communists and in Iraq we are fighting the evil terrorists. 


Our war against Communism out-stayed its "welcome"  in the 1980's and the military industrial war complex was running out of excuses to build bombs, tanks, bullets, ships, submarines, and soldiers; so in 2001, our leaders who serve the war machine had to switch our enemy of the state to terrorism.


Dr. King had the temerity to challenge the war machine and war racketeers on April 04, 1967 in his famous speech on Vietnam--and he paid for that bit of inspired, courageous, honesty with his life exactly one year later. Casey had the naive gall to join the US Army thinking he would be making the world a better, safer place--and he paid for that kind of immature (but honest) mistake with his wonderful life.


Casey was a brave and honorable man who we were told volunteered to go on the mission that killed him to save the lives of his buddies. He was shot in the back of the head and died a little while later in a medic's station while a medic was trying to hold his brains in while the doctors tried to keep him breathing. We have heard many wildly disparate stories of Casey's last few minutes on earth, I don't know if we will ever know the truth. One thing I do know, however, is that like Dr. King, Casey's murder will be to advance the cause for peace and in the name of love.


I am wholly and completely convinced that this aggression on Iraq is illegal, immoral and appallingly unnecessary. I am also convinced that one drop of blood was one drop of blood too much to be shed for this abomination in Iraq. Now oceans of blood—both Iraqi and American—have been spilled for ruinous and disturbing policies of very bad people in our government who have based their reasons for invasion and occupation on their twisted imaginations and their seemingly bottomless lust for power, profits, chaos and confusion.


Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote this from the Birmingham Jail in 1963 and it is so relevant today:


We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the hateful words and actions of bad people, but for the appalling silence of the good people.


I must regretfully admit that before my son was killed, I didn't publicly speak out against the invasion/occupation of Iraq. I didn't shout out and say: "Stop! Stop this insane rush to an invasion that has no basis in reality—don't invade a country based on cherry-picked, prefabricated intelligence and contemptible scare tactics!"


I didn't stand up and scream: "Congress, don't you dare abrogate your constitutional rights and responsibilities! Do not, under ANY circumstances give the keys to our country to power-drunk, irresponsible and reckless maniacs!"


When George threateningly stated in his disordered and defiant headlong rush to disaster: "If you're not for us, you're against us," I will regret forever not calling him on the phone and screaming: "I am SO against you and your repulsive policies, you self-important man. I am against killing innocent people and I am against you telling me it's unpatriotic to be against you and your murderous philosophy!"


If I had broken the bonds of my slavery to silence sooner, would Casey (and scores of others) still be alive? I don't know. There were and still are so many good people working for peace and justice and they have been for so many years. One thing I do know, however, is that no matter how much I scream and cry and rail against God, country, and humanity, I cannot bring Casey back. But, I have not shut up since Casey was killed, nor will I be silent until every last one of our nation's sons and daughters are brought back from this morally repugnant and ill-fated war!! Nor, will I give up when this occupation is finished. I will continue fighting for the children of the world and make sure a tragedy of historic proportions like this never happens again. If I can save even one mother here or there from the pain and agony I'm going through, then it will have been so immensely worth it.


I encourage and challenge every citizen of the world to do one small thing for peace each day. Even if it is to nag your elected officials to demand the keys of our country back from the all but convicted felons, liars and self-proclaimed pro-life hypocrites who have them now.


Casey and Dr. King were both violently killed on April 04 in different years and during different wars--two wars that are really just two different sides of the same coin. I want their deaths to mean something. I want them to count for peace and justice, not violence and hatred.


I can feel my son's presence urging me on to save his buddies. I can hear him whispering in my ear and in my dreams: "Mom, finish my mission. Bring my buddies home alive." I can hear Dr. King's words similarly challenging me to action: "The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists will we be?"


Well, Casey, my son, my hero. Well, Dr. King, the hero of millions, I pledge to be the kind of extremist who works for peace with justice and who will never take "No" for an answer. I will strive to hold the bad people in our government accountable for all of the heartache and emptiness they have caused our world by their deliberate lies and deceptions and by their misuse of power and their abuse of our nation's precious human resources. 


I will be the kind of extremist who believes that our country can be taken back from the corporatocracy and unethical war profiteers that have control of it now. I will be the kind of extremist who believes that the people of Iraq can rebuild their own country without the dangerous "help" of the American military presence and I will be the kind of extremist who strives to bring our kids home from the Middle East immediately.

If there ever was a time in our nation's history that required the passion and compassion of extremists, it is now: This very minute.


What kind of extremist will you be?   



Thursday, January 12, 2012

Who Really Killed Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr (AND RFK)?




Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox continues its quest for truth, peace, and accountability with this offering! Cindy starts with Dr. William Pepper, who talks about his personal associations with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr during the last year of his life, and then the legal battles Dr. Pepper undertook on behalf of Dr. King's family and the patsy: James Earl Ray.  


Dr. Pepper offers an unpublicized retrospective view of the passing of one of our nation's most revered and inspirational leaders.  

Cindy's dear friend and good Soapbox buddy, Ray McGovern was brutalized at an event where Sec. of State, Hillary Clinton, was speaking, condemning foreign governments for treating protesters harshly.  Ray stood in silent and dignified protest, turning his back on her - when he was blindsided, manhandled and arrested - for peacefully protesting.  (Fine job Hillary:  Show everyone how we respect our own protesters, here at home!)  Cindy chats with Ray about that awful experience.  



Sunday, January 8, 2012

BECOME A MONTHLY SOAPBOX SUSTAINER








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IF YOU WORK FOR PEACE, STOP PAYING FOR WAR by Cindy Sheehan


War Tax Resistance

Cindy Sheehan



Recently, at the Occupy the Rose Parade Rally where I spoke, I talked about one of my forms of resistance: Not paying my federal income taxes.


Even though I have been very vocal about this for almost eight years now, since my son was killed in Iraq; and even though tax resistance is a long and honored form of protest, all of a sudden I am being attacked for tax “evasion.”
I can’t help it if people don’t pay attention to what I say and what I do and I also can’t help it if other people want to contribute to the crimes of the U.S. government, but I recently wrote this article entitled: “We Will Never Pay so Stop Harassing Us.”

Also, for the last Soapbox of 2012, I hosted the co-ordinators of the National War Tax Resistance League on Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox—listen here at this link