Progressive Calendar 10.18.11 /2
From: David Shove (
Date: Tue, 18 Oct 2011 12:09:36 -0700 (PDT)
  P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R    10.18.11

1. Green candidates   10.18 6/6:30pm
2. Peak Oil                10.18 6:30pm
 3. Occupy/money       10.18.7pm
4. Assault on science 10.18 7pm

5. Chris Hedges - A movement too big to fail
6. ed                 - Dems really really awfully concerned about job loss

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From: Amber Garlan
Green candidates 10.18 6/6:30pm

Our hardworking and wonderful Green Party candidates are in debates on
Tuesday, 10/18/11!

Johnny Howard, the Green Party candidate for St. Paul City Council Ward 1
will have a listening forum with Anthony Hernandez at 6:00 at the Dunning
Recreation Center located at 1221 Marshal Ave. in St. Paul.

Jim Ivey, the Green Party candidate for St. Paul City Council Ward 2 will
have a candidate forum at 6:30 at Our Lady of Guadalupe parish located at
401 Concord Street in St. Paul, MN 55107.

I wish I could be in two places at once!  I will be at one of them.

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From: Patty
Peak Oil 10.18 6:30pm

Tuesday, Oct. 18 (already) the guest will be Bob Rohland and he is
giving us a glimpse of what is happening around the oil crisis.  The
title of his presentation is:


As a p.s., just to let you know that the salon was well represented at the
hearings on Tuesday night re. the Vikings Stadium and a referendum.   Most
of the people at the hearing presented intelligent speeches FOR having a
referendum.  The ones against it did not give
intelligent reasons. (my bias)   But, the Commission declined a referendum,
anyway.   We are still going to try to stop this nonsense.  If you want to
be a part of it, let me know.

Pax Salons ( ) are held (unless otherwise
noted in advance):
Tuesdays, 6:30 to 8:30 pm.
Mad Hatter's Tea House, 943 W 7th, St Paul, MN

Salons are free but donations encouraged for program and treats.
Call 651-227-3228 or 651-227-2511 for information.

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Richard Kotlarz richkotlarz [at] to bcc: me
Occupy/money 10.18.7pm

Next Session - Money, Society and the Spirit:
A workshop presented by Richard Kotlarz and Steven Gorg.
Suggested topic for this session: The Occupy Wall Street Movement

“This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent on the
commercial Banks. Someone has to borrow every dollar we have in
circulation, cash or credit. If the Banks create ample synthetic money
we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are absolutely without a
permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture,
the tragic absurdity of our hopeless position is almost incredible,
but there it is. It (the banking system) is the most important subject
intelligent persons can investigate and reflect upon. It is so
important that our present civilization may collapse unless it becomes
widely understood and the defects remedied very soon.”
-Robert Hemphill, Credit manager of Federal Reserve Bank in Atlanta.

There are many monetary riddles that haunt our post-modern world.
Indeed, they are increasingly experienced as threatening the viability
of our personal lives, the existence of civilization, and even the
continuation of life on earth itself. Can we get a perspective on
this? Can we turn a corner? Is there a vision on the other side?

These questions and more will be explored in a series of two-hour
evening sessions, that will meet every week.

Please feel free to join us even if you have not attended a previous
Attendance is free (contributions welcome)

Macalester College (Old Main, Room 009)
1600 Grand Avenue, Saint Paul, MN

Date & Time: Tuesday, Oct. 18, 7 to 9 pm
(Repeats every week through Tuesday, December 13, 2011):

Richard Kotlarz:  Richard is a seeker after the truth about money and
the economic life, who has engaged in literally thousands of
discussions on money-related topics with people from all walks of
life, across the U.S., and in Canada and Europe.
Steven Gorg:  Steven is a professional environmental engineer who has
come to see that becoming truly conscious about Money is the portal
through which a meaningful and effective ecological and social
transformation can be achieved.

Richard and Steven have discovered that, concerning money, there is a
story to be told and a vision to behold of which We the People are
getting hardly even an inkling through conventional media, academic
orthodoxy, or popular culture.

Facilitator Contact Information:
richkotlarz [at], 218-828-1366
steve [at]

Offered under auspices of Experimental Community Education of the Twin

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From: The Loft
Assault on science 10.18 7pm

The Loft Literary Center
            Open Book Suite 2001011 Washington Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN

Tuesday, October 18, 7 p.m.Publication ReadingShawn OttoFool Me Twice:
Fighting the Assault on Science in America Shawn Lawrence Otto comes to the
Loft to read from and discuss his behind-the-scenes look at how the
government, our politics, and the media prevent us from finding the real
solutions we need. Fool Me Twice is the clever, outraged, and frightening
account of America’s relationship with science—a relationship that is on the
rocks at the very time we need it most.

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A Movement Too Big to Fail
by Chris Hedges
Published on Monday, October 17, 2011 by

There is no danger that the protesters who have occupied squares, parks and
plazas across the nation in defiance of the corporate state will be co-opted
by the Democratic Party or groups like MoveOn. The faux liberal reformers,
whose abject failure to stand up for the rights of the poor and the working
class, have signed on to this movement because they fear becoming
irrelevant. Union leaders, who pull down salaries five times that of the
rank and file as they bargain away rights and benefits, know the foundations
are shaking. So do Democratic politicians from Barack Obama to Nancy Pelosi.
So do the array of “liberal” groups and institutions, including the press,
that have worked to funnel discontented voters back into the swamp of
electoral politics and mocked those who called for profound structural
Resistance, real resistance, to the corporate state was displayed when a
couple of thousand protesters, clutching mops and brooms, early Friday
morning forced the owners of Zuccotti Park and the New York City police to
back down from a proposed attempt to expel them in order to “clean” the
premises. These protesters in that one glorious moment did what the
traditional “liberal” establishment has steadily refused to do—fight back.
And it was deeply moving to watch the corporate rats scamper back to their
holes on Wall Street. It lent a whole new meaning to the phrase “too big to

Tinkering with the corporate state will not work. We will either be plunged
into neo-feudalism and environmental catastrophe or we will wrest power from
corporate hands. This radical message, one that demands a reversal of the
corporate coup, is one the power elite, including the liberal class, is
desperately trying to thwart. But the liberal class has no credibility left.
It collaborated with corporate lobbyists to neglect the rights of tens of
millions of Americans, as well as the innocents in our imperial wars. The
best that liberals can do is sheepishly pretend this is what they wanted all
along. Groups such as MoveOn and organized labor will find themselves
without a constituency unless they at least pay lip service to the protests.
The Teamsters’ arrival Friday morning to help defend the park signaled an
infusion of this new radicalism into moribund unions rather than a co-opting
of the protest movement by the traditional liberal establishment. The union
bosses, in short, had no choice.

The Occupy Wall Street movement, like all radical movements, has obliterated
the narrow political parameters. It proposes something new. It will not make
concessions with corrupt systems of corporate power. It holds fast to moral
imperatives regardless of the cost. It confronts authority out of a sense of
responsibility. It is not interested in formal positions of power. It is not
seeking office. It is not trying to get people to vote. It has no resources.
It can’t carry suitcases of money to congressional offices or run millions
of dollars of advertisements. All it can do is ask us to use our bodies and
voices, often at personal risk, to fight back. It has no other way of
defying the corporate state. This rebellion creates a real community instead
of a managed or virtual one. It affirms our dignity. It permits us to become
free and independent human beings.

Martin Luther King was repeatedly betrayed by liberal supporters, especially
when he began to challenge economic forms of discrimination, which demanded
that liberals, rather than simply white Southern racists, begin to make
sacrifices. King too was a radical. He would not compromise on nonviolence,
racism or justice. He understood that movements—such as the Liberty Party,
which fought slavery, the suffragists, who fought for women’s rights, the
labor movement and the civil rights movement—have always been the true
correctives in American democracy. None of those movements achieved formal
political power. But by holding fast to moral imperatives they made the
powerful fear them. King knew that racial equality was impossible without
economic justice and an end to militarism. And he had no intention of ceding
to the demands of the liberal establishment that called on him to be calm
and patience. “For years, I labored with the idea of reforming the existing
institutions in the South, a little change here, a little change there,”
King said shortly before he was assassinated. “Now I feel quite differently.
I think you’ve got to have a reconstruction of the entire system, a
revolution of values.”

King was killed in 1968 when he was in Memphis to support a strike by
sanitation workers. By then he had begun to say that his dream, the one that
the corporate state has frozen into a few safe clichés from his 1963 speech
in Washington, had turned into a nightmare. King called at the end of his
life for massive federal funds to rebuild inner cities, what he called “a
radical redistribution of economic and political power,” a complete
restructuring of “the architecture of American society.” He grasped that the
inequities of capitalism had become the instrument by which the poor would
always remain poor. “Call it democracy, or call it democratic socialism,”
King said, “but there must be a better distribution of wealth within this
country for all of God’s children.” On the eve of King’s murder he was
preparing to organize a poor people’s march on Washington, D.C., designed to
cause “major, massive dislocations,” a nonviolent demand by the poor,
including the white underclass, for a system of economic equality. It would
be 43 years before his vision was realized by an eclectic group of
protesters who gathered before the gates of Wall Street.

The truth of America is understood only when you listen to voices in our
impoverished rural enclaves, prisons and the urban slums, when you hear the
words of our unemployed, those who have lost their homes or cannot pay their
medical bills, our elderly and our children, especially the quarter of the
nation’s children who depend on food stamps to eat, and all who are
marginalized. There is more reality expressed about the American experience
by the debt-burdened young men and women protesting in the parks than by all
the chatter of the well-paid pundits and experts that pollutes the airwaves.

What kind of nation is it that spends far more to kill enemy combatants and
Afghan and Iraqi civilians than it does to help its own citizens who live
below the poverty line? What kind of nation is it that permits corporations
to hold sick children hostage while their parents frantically bankrupt
themselves to save their sons and daughters? What kind of nation is it that
tosses its mentally ill onto urban heating grates? What kind of nation is it
that abandons its unemployed while it loots its treasury on behalf of
speculators? What kind of nation is it that ignores due process to torture
and assassinate its own citizens? What kind of nation is it that refuses to
halt the destruction of the ecosystem by the fossil fuel industry, dooming
our children and our children’s children?

“America,” Langston Hughes wrote, “never was America to me.”

“The black vote mean [nothing],” the rapper Nas intones. “Who you gunna
elect/ Satan or Satan? In the hood nothing is changing,/ We aint got no

Or listen to hip-hop artist Talib Kweli: “Back in the ’60s, there was a big
push for black … politicians, and now we have more than we ever had before,
but our communities are so much worse. A lot of people died for us to vote,
I’m aware of that history, but these politicians are not in touch with
people at all. Politics is not the truth to me, it’s an illusion.”

The liberal class functions in a traditional, capitalist democracy as a
safety valve. It lets off enough steam to keep the system intact. It makes
piecemeal and incremental reform possible. This is what happened during the
Great Depression and the New Deal. Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s greatest
achievement was that he saved capitalism. Liberals in a functioning
capitalist democracy are at the same time tasked with discrediting radicals,
whether it is King, especially after he denounced the war in Vietnam, or
later Noam Chomsky or Ralph Nader.

The stupidity of the corporate state is that it thought it could dispense
with the liberal class. It thought it could shut off that safety valve in
order to loot and pillage with no impediments. Corporate power forgot that
the liberal class, when it functions, gives legitimacy to the power elite.
And the reduction of the liberal class to silly courtiers, who have nothing
to offer but empty rhetoric, meant that the growing discontent found other
mechanisms and outlets. Liberals were reduced to stick figures, part of an
elaborate pantomime, as they acted in preordained roles to give legitimacy
to meaningless and useless political theater. But that game is over.

Human history has amply demonstrated that once those in positions of power
become redundant and impotent, yet retain the trappings and privileges of
power, they are brutally discarded. The liberal class, which insists on
clinging to its positions of privilege while at the same time refusing to
play its traditional role within the democratic state, has become a useless
and despised appendage of corporate power. And as the engines of corporate
power pollute and poison the ecosystem and propel us into a world where
there will be only masters and serfs, the liberal class, which serves no
purpose in the new configuration, is being abandoned and discarded by both
the corporate state and radical dissidents. The best it can do is attach
itself meekly to the new political configuration rising up to replace it.

An ineffectual liberal class means there is no hope of a correction or a
reversal through the formal mechanisms of power. It ensures that the
frustration and anger among the working and the middle class will find
expression now in these protests that lie outside the confines of democratic
institutions and the civilities of a liberal democracy. By emasculating the
liberal class, which once ensured that restive citizens could institute
moderate reforms, the corporate state has created a closed system defined by
polarization, gridlock and political charades. It has removed the veneer of
virtue and goodness that the liberal class offered to the power elite.
Liberal institutions, including the church, the press, the university, the
Democratic Party, the arts and labor unions, set the parameters for limited
self-criticism in a functioning democracy as well as small, incremental
reforms. The liberal class is permitted to decry the worst excesses of power
and champion basic human rights while at the same time endowing systems of
power with a morality and virtue it does not possess. Liberals posit
themselves as the conscience of the nation. They permit us, through their
appeal to public virtues and the public good, to see ourselves and our state
as fundamentally good.

But the liberal class, by having refused to question the utopian promises of
unfettered capitalism and globalization and by condemning those who did,
severed itself from the roots of creative and bold thought, the only forces
that could have prevented the liberal class from merging completely with the
power elite. The liberal class, which at once was betrayed and betrayed
itself, has no role left to play in the battle between us and corporate
dominance. All hope lies now with those in the street.

Liberals lack the vision and fortitude to challenge dominant free market
ideologies. They have no ideological alternatives even as the Democratic
Party openly betrays every principle the liberal class claims to espouse,
from universal health care to an end to our permanent war economy to a
demand for quality and affordable public education to a return of civil
liberties to a demand for jobs and welfare of the working class. The
corporate state forced the liberal class to join in the nation’s death march
that began with the presidency of Ronald Reagan. Liberals such as Bill
Clinton, for corporate money, accelerated the dismantling of our
manufacturing base, the gutting of our regulatory agencies, the destruction
of our social service programs and the empowerment of speculators who have
trashed our economy. The liberal class, stripped of power, could only
retreat into its atrophied institutions, where it busied itself with the
boutique activism of political correctness and embraced positions it had
previously condemned.
Russell Jacoby writes: “The left once dismissed the market as exploitative;
it now honors the market as rational and humane. The left once disdained
mass culture as exploitative; now it celebrates it as rebellious. The left
once honored independent intellectuals as courageous; now it sneers at them
as elitist. The left once rejected pluralism as superficial; now it worships
it as profound. We are witnessing not simply a defeat of the left, but its
conversion and perhaps inversion.”

Hope in this age of bankrupt capitalism comes with the return of the
language of class conflict and rebellion, language that has been purged from
the lexicon of the liberal class, language that defines this new movement.
This does not mean we have to agree with Karl Marx, who advocated violence
and whose worship of the state as a utopian mechanism led to another form of
enslavement of the working class, but we have to learn again to speak in the
vocabulary Marx employed. We have to grasp, as Marx and Adam Smith did, that
corporations are not concerned with the common good. They exploit, pollute,
impoverish, repress, kill and lie to make money. They throw poor families
out of homes, let the uninsured die, wage useless wars to make profits,
poison and pollute the ecosystem, slash social assistance programs, gut
public education, trash the global economy, plunder the U.S. Treasury and
crush all popular movements that seek justice for working men and women.
They worship money and power. And, as Marx knew, unfettered capitalism is a
revolutionary force that consumes greater and greater numbers of human lives
until it finally consumes itself. The dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico is the
perfect metaphor for the corporate state. It is part of the same nightmare
experienced in postindustrial mill towns of New England and the abandoned
steel mills of Ohio. It is a nightmare that Iraqis, Pakistanis and Afghans,
living in terror and mourning their dead, endure daily.

What took place early Friday morning in Zuccotti Park was the first salvo in
a long struggle for justice. It signaled a step backward by the corporate
state in the face of popular pressure. And it was carried out by ordinary
men and women who sleep at night on concrete, get soaked in rainstorms, eat
donated food and have nothing as weapons but their dignity, resilience and
courage. It is they, and they alone, who hold out the possibility of
salvation. And if we join them we might have a chance.
Copyright © 2011 Truthdig, L.L.C.

Chris Hedges writes a regular column for Hedges graduated from
Harvard Divinity School and was for nearly two decades a foreign
correspondent for The New York Times. He is the author of many books,
including: War Is A Force That Gives Us Meaning, What Every Person Should
Know About War, and American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on
America.  His most recent book is Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy
and the Triumph of Spectacle.

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Professional Dems
are at last strongly concerned
with job loss - their own.

O no not *us! *they
piss moan shreck kvetch wail and sob
O god no *not us*!


                                                        Jove Shove
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