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Contacts between Police and the Public


A Clarksville, TN Police officer takes a accident report (From: the following report tries to play it down, it’s clear from the report that the fears that many minorities, and younger people have about contact with police, have a basis in fact. They are more likely to be stopped, searched, experience force during their dealings with police, and be arrested. It’s also signficant that of residents who experienced force, 83% felt it was excessive, and that most uses of force are initiated by the police. It’s time for this to change.

Contacts between Police and the Public
By Matthew R. Durose, Erica L. Smith, and Patrick A. Langan, Ph.D. BJS Statisticians
A Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report
U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs
April 2007
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Drumbeat for Darfur – Call the White House today!


Drumbeat for Darfur - UUSCKeep up the drumbeat. Tell President Bush: Time is running out! To make sure that the message from Global Day for Darfur is heard loud and clear, make this one call on Monday, April 30. UUSC’s Drumbeat for Darfur is building the momentum with a National Call-In Day to put coordinated, nationwide pressure on the Bush administration. It’s time to take action! Your calls can make a real difference!

To take part simply call President Bush at (202) 456-1111, and tell him that you demand protection for innocent civilians in Darfur who are the targets of this intolerable genocide. «Read the rest of this article»

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Stunning ‘Il Trittico’ delights opera fans


Douglas W. Schmidt’s set model for Il TabarroA stunning performance of Giacomo Puccini’s complete three-act Il Trittico played to a near capacity crowd at Green Hills Mall in Nashville Saturday, a high-definition big screen broadcast of the New York Metropolitan Opera Live from Lincoln Center. Maestro James Levine conducted.

First performed in 1918, Il Trittico is actually three distinct one-act operas, two heart-wrenching tragedies followed by a light-hearted look at living, dying and “the will.”

The opening segment, Il Tabarro, unfolds its tragedy in the form of a lovers triangle — with the faithless wife Giorgetta (Maria Guleghina) mourning the loss of a child, falling from her husband’s arms into the passionate embrace of an all too eager Luigi (Salvatore Licitra). Guleghina brings a beauty and power to the role, torn between what was, what is and what will be, yearning for the physical love of Luigi, while waging a love/hate war with her husband Michele (Juan Pons), the father of her lost child. Licitar’s voice, in a word, mesmerizes as he sings of his adoration and his frustration at not being able to claim his new love for his own. Pons offers a haunting aria of passion, hatred and despair as he realizes his wife has betrayed him, has triggered in him the power to kill. «Read the rest of this article»

A failure in generalship


A failure in GeneralshipFor the second time in a generation, the United States faces the prospect of defeat at the hands of an insurgency. In April 1975, the U.S. fled the Republic of Vietnam, abandoning our allies to their fate at the hands of North Vietnamese communists. In 2007, Iraq’s grave and deteriorating condition offers diminishing hope for an American victory and portends risk of an even wider and more destructive regional war.

These debacles are not attributable to individual failures, but rather to a crisis in an entire institution: America’s general officer corps. America’s generals have failed to prepare our armed forces for war and advise civilian authorities on the application of force to achieve the aims of policy. The argument that follows consists of three elements. First, generals have a responsibility to society to provide policymakers with a correct estimate of strategic probabilities. Second, America’s generals in Vietnam and Iraq failed to perform this responsibility. Third, remedying the crisis in American generalship requires the intervention of Congress.

“You officers amuse yourselves with God knows what buffooneries and never dream in the least of serious service. This is a source of stupidity which would become most dangerous in case of a serious conflict.” – Frederick the Great

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John Edwards: The Question I wasn’t asked


John EdwardsHi.

I hope you all got a chance to watch last night’s debate. These conversations are all about giving the American people the power to make an informed choice about the future of our country. That’s why I take my responsibility so seriously to provide specific, honest and complete answers about my beliefs and my plans.

There were a lot of good questions tonight and I was glad that I got to address many important areas of policy and character. But there was one critical question I wasn’t asked – one that’s extremely relevant right now as President Bush and Congress are set to face off in Washington. I’d like to answer that for you here:

What should we be doing — right now — to end the war in Iraq?

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Video: Rev. Yearwood: Bush is Over! (if you want it)


The Make Hip Hop Not War TourMake Hip Hop Not War speaks truth to power at West Park Presbyterian Church in NYC. Rev. Lennox Yearwood calls for impeachment and an end to the war, and encourages people to mobilize for the April 28 nationwide impeachment protests.

BREAKING: Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) announced April 23rd, that he will file articles of impeachment against Dick Cheney. Further details will be released at a press conference on Tuesday, April 24, 2007 at 5 p.m. on the Cannon Terrace, intersection of Independence and New Jersey Avenue.

George Bush and Dick Cheney have lied the nation into a war of aggression, are spying in open violation of the law, and have sanctioned the use of torture. These are high crimes and misdemeanors that demand accountability. Since Congress doesn’t seem to get it, on April 28 Americans from Miami, Florida to North Pole, Alaska are going to spell it out for them: IMPEACH! It’s time to say NO to impunity for lying, spying, and torture. «Read the rest of this article»

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Updated: Must watch TV: Bill Moyers Journal: Buying the War


Bill Moyers star of PBS’s Bill Moyer’s Journal

If you missed seeing it, or if you wish to forward it to your email lists, You can watch Bill Moyer’s Journal:  Buying the war online.

How the administration marketed the war to the American people has been well covered, but critical questions remain: How and why did the press buy it, and what does it say about the role of journalists in helping the public sort out fact from propaganda?

Set your PVR’s and stock up on popcorn, because this is really gonna be can’t miss TV.

David Swanson, who saw an advance copy of the program, writes, “Spending that 90 minutes on this will actually save you time, because you’ll never watch television news again-not even on PBS, which comes in for its share of criticism.”

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Restore Fairness, Return to Reality


Patricia GoldsmithForget Imus. All this fuss will be just so much wasted outrage unless we use it to direct public attention to the big picture: the way the media information cartel has rigged journalism in this country. We need to agitate to break up and re-regulate the media, beginning with restoration of the fairness doctrine.

Ever since the fairness doctrine went down for good in 1986, hate and misinformation have taken over the airwaves, beginning with Rush Limbaugh on the radio and spreading to TV. As Rep. Louise Slaughter said in a 2004 interview with Bill Moyers, after fairness was defeated,

AM radio rose. It wasn’t even gradual, Bill. I mean, almost immediately. And I should point out to you that when we tried to reinstate [the fairness doctrine] again in ’93, one of the reasons we couldn’t was that Rush Limbaugh had organized this massive uprising against it, calling it “The Hush Rush Law.”

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Bernie Ellis stands to lose his farm in the war on drugs


Bernie Ellis on his 187 acre farm. Good morning, all. It is now five days to the “Save Bernie’s Farm” benefit at the Belcourt (April 25) and 19 days until his release date (May 10). He hopes to see many of you at the Belcourt (though he has not yet received permission yet from the “house” director to attend the benefit). It is shaping up to be a fantastic evening of music and mobilization for medical marijuana in Tennessee. Please order your tickets today by calling 615/383-9140. «Read the rest of this article»

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Video: The Powers of Ten


Production art for the Powers of Ten from the Library of CongressIn 1977, Charles and Ray Eames made a nine-minute film called Powers of Ten that still has the capacity today to expand the way we think and view our world. Over ten million people have since seen the film and it continues to be shown in classrooms, business meetings, festivals and retreats everywhere.

Starting with a sleeping man at a picnic, the film takes the viewer on a journey out to the edge of space and then back into a carbon atom in the hand of the man picnic, all in a single shot. It is an unforgettable experience.

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