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PressWatch is a weekly counterpropaganda and Left opinion program hosted by Theresa Mitchell; expect analysis, alternative news, humor, and transgender politics.
We need more programs like this. Theresa, you are fantastic!
How about a story about Theresa Mitchel's suggestion on Indymedia that a person with a military background should not be protected from harassment?
Gald you are back. Tell it like it is sister!
The creator of recombinomics.com, internationally reknowned virus researcher Dr. Henry Niman, will be interviewed August 13th on PressWatch at 9AM. Call in with your comments.
It was a blast getting to meet Michio Kaku, the co-founder of String Theory. The man is a titan, not because he's eclipsing Hawking's and Sagan's video legacy, but because he's constantly contributing to the cutting edge of theoretical physics. One of the first (off-air) things I asked him was whether he was the exercising sort, because I couldn't figure out how he did so many things without collapsing from exhaustion--he's been on book tour for a month now, has another month to go, he's being filmed for a new 12-part series based on his book Physics of the Impossible--and he seemed quite poised. But he says he's not an exerciser, although he likes to figure-skate (!!).
Well, when conducting the interview on air, I figured it out. At one point in the audio ( http://kboo.fm/node/13358 ) you can hear him say the phrase "like this phone interview." But he was right in front of me. I noticed then that his eyes drifted to his right while he was expounding, and his left eye had an occasional rapid dance to it. He was working on his theory as he responded to my questions! I think he was probably developing mathematical solutions--just a feeling. But it was clear that he could meta-multi-task. I mean, I had his attention, it's just that he had SO MUCH MORE BRAINPOWER to work with, that he could have a lively conversation with me, and do some intellectual heavy lifting at the same time. Damn.
Thursday's audio: http://kboo.fm/node/6089
Friday, February 29, 2008
a lovely day for revolution
Years after left commentators (like myself) began pointing out that we had a million people in prison--no, two million--no, more than any other country in history--no, two-point-two million--it's come out that one in a hundred persons is actually behind bars in this massive prison state:
What's left to say? If punishment stopped drug use, it would have ended in the Seventies, and if capitalism were the ultimate system, it would not be constantly associated with crime. I maintain that a capitalist society deserves crime--especially a cruel capitalist nutcase society like this one, in which people must rob banks to pay for their young children's cancer treatments. Well, no one can argue now that we aren't getting what we deserve! One in a hundred--incredible! Nearly three million completely chained and enslaved!
This is not enough for the police-state mentality, which also wants to criminalize dissent. Dig this:
"DEVICE WILL HELP SAN JOSE CONTROL LOUD CROWDS
By Sean Webby
San Jose Mercury News (2/25/08)
Think louder than a jet engine. Think the front row of a Metallica concert. Think of the piercing scream of a smoke alarm - inches from your ear.
Now, imagine a bad guy, holed up with hostages, refusing to budge, surrounded by sharp-shooters and anxious neighbors. [notice how the discussion is immediately drawn to scary criminals rather than to the demonstrators this will be used on--tm]
Instead of bullets, San Jose police can blast him with the latest in high-tech cop gadgetry: a dish-shaped, sonic weapon.
This ear-splitting, mind-blowing device is growing in popularity around the globe, used by soldiers flushing terrorists out of caves in Afghanistan to cruise ships scaring off pirates in the sea off Somalia.
So why did San Jose plunk down $27,000 in state grant money for its own Long Range Acoustic Device?
Police say it will be used mostly as a high-grade sound system to clearly amplify a police officer's order at great distances. But it can also be used as another of the department's "less-lethal" weapons, along with Tasers and 40mm projectile guns.
....[more at san jose mercury news]
Of course, LRAD is not just a loudspeaker, but a focused sound device that can torture an individual in a crowd or make her think the voice of God or demons or whatever is speaking only to her.
Our mental conditioning towards fascist collaboration is at an advanced stage. I had to attend a training class for security and safety on my job—I drive a municipal bus—and in stead of teaching us how to deal with the inevitable strong earthquake for this region, or how to manage after strong storms, we were shown pictures of bombs and told to sweep the bus after every trip. We were told about the appearance of weaponized anthrax, and warned to call if someone left their backpack on the bus.
I was furious at this blatant fearmongering and risked my job speaking out against it at the meeting. The response was interesting; it was as if I could not be heard. I was ignored studiously, as if I were the voice of Satan. “Anthrax?” I jeered, “there’s no anthrax.” And indeed the only weaponized anthrax available, Ft. Detrick’s special de-staticized powder, was unlikely to re-appear considering that Lt. Col Philip Zack is out of the country. But we were to pretend that the stuff could appear at any time, and we’re expected to help create a a hysteria, the next time someone spills their flour or Coffee-Mate or whatever.
If there were any truth to the post-9/11 fearmongering, one might expect some furious defense from the instructor of the class when I raised objections. But there is of course no reason to do all the ridiculous things we do in the name of security, because the threat is far less significant than the threat of car accidents, smoking-related disease and deaths, alcohol-related injury and deaths, and deaths from poor nutrition. Compare the numbers of deaths in the US over the past ten years, add in death and injury from crime, and the ratio is staggering. Terrorism is not a statistically significant problem in the US. The only reason to undertake all of these ridiculous measures is to keep the population fearful and under control. And it’s worked beautifully. I refused to let some poor shmo put his gasoline-powered scooter on the bus, because of course the potential gas spill could injure dozens. He was too dim to understand, and felt persecuted, but there was nothing I could do; as I drove away, another Einstein commented that it was a good thing I had not allowed the man on, because ‘he could be a terrorist and might have wanted to blow us up.’ I don’t blame people with mental disabilities for their condition; it’s shocking to think on, but nonetheless true, that half the population, by definition, has an IQ in the double digits. I blame vicious demagogues for taking advantage of them. And as the neocon demagogues know, there is a strong intimidation factor to a blatantly false idea, when it is repeated as gospel by the masses of weak-minded, politically uneducated people.
Don't let it stand. Say something.
Thank you for writing this article. It is such a shame that the American people can be suckered into believing anything. The chances of a person being killed by a terrorist in the United States is 1 in 100,000. The chances of someone being killed by disease, car accidents, suicide, pollution is 1 in the 1000+. It is all political hype to get people to support Bush and make him and the oil companies that he represents richer. He cares nothing about the American people or how many of us he sends over to fight and die for his war. Thank you again for writing this and hopefully the American people will read it and actually open their eyes to what is happening in the USA!
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