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This is a bit late but still very timely. From Monday 12/13/04's Democracy Now:
"Gary Webb, a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter who wrote a series of stories linking the CIA to crack cocaine trafficking in Los Angeles, is dead at age 49.
Webb was found Friday morning at his home in Sacramento County, dead of an apparent suicide. Moving-company workers called authorities after discovering a note posted on his front door that read, "Please do not enter. Call 911 and ask for an ambulance." Webb died of a gunshot wound to the head, according to the Sacramento County coroner's office. He is survived by two sons and a daughter.
Gary Webb's 1996 series in the San Jose Mercury News titled "Dark Alliance" revealed that for the better part of a decade, a Bay Area drug ring sold tons of cocaine to Los Angeles street gangs and funneled millions in drug profits to the CIA-backed Nicaraguan Contras.
It provoked a fierce reaction from the media establishment, which denounced the series. Following the controversy, San Jose Mercury News executive editor demoted Webb within the paper. He resigned and pushed his investigation even further in his book "Dark Alliance: The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion."
There's an interview with author and journalist Robert Parry at Democracy Now, in both written and video format.
A bill proposed by State Representative Gerald Allen of Cottondale, Alabama, would prohibit the use of tax dollars to purchase the textbooks or library materials that promote homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle. The Alabama Republican believes pro-homosexual novels and textbooks are prevalent in the state's public and university libraries, and he views his legislation as a "good start" towards addressing the moral decline in American culture.
Rep. Gerald AllenIf Allen's proposed legislation becomes law, children's books, young adult novels, and even literary classics containing positive portrayals of homosexual characters would have to be removed from library shelves across the state and destroyed, along with any college-level books or texts that suggest homosexuality is natural or acceptable. The bill would also prohibit a teacher from handing out materials or bringing in a classroom speaker who promotes homosexuality, and it would ban all materials that recognize or promote any acts the sodomy and sexual misconduct laws of Alabama prohibit, homosexual or otherwise.
Critics of Allen's bill warn that its broad proscriptions would ban many important and popular works of literature, such as Alice Walker's The Color Purple, Evelyn Waugh's Brideshead Revisited, and Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as certain plays of Tennessee Williams, for example. But the Alabama legislator has been widely quoted as advocating that, for all pro-homosexual literature and educational materials found in public schools, universities and libraries, "we should dig a big hole and dump them in and bury them."
Last month Punk Voter folks got together in Frisco and sussed out what we'll be doing next. After helping to get more 18-24s to the polls than ever before- and halting the steady slide in the % of youth voters- in November's national US elections- Punk Voter is switching our focus.
Now we're going to concentrate on 4 specific areas for the immediate future:1. Impending draft and encouraging Conscientious Objectors to register now before the draft occurs.2. Protect Roe vs. Wade and related choice issues.3. Fight increased media consolidation and encourage media literacy.4. Repair our Democracy- recountable, accessible touch screen machines, Instant Run-Off Voting, Public Financing, true Campaign Finance Reform, and on and on.
You can read more about it in AT Mail Male Jesse "Luscious" Townley's Guest Column on the Punk Voter site. There's also an update on Jesse's campaign for Berkeley City Council there. Dig in and step up!
11/18/04: Warning! Satire Ahead!
Warning! Dangerous new STD hits US!
The Centers for Disease Control has issued a warning about a new virulent strain of sexually transmitted disease. This disease is contracted through dangerous and high risk behavior. The disease is called Gonorrhea lecthim (pronounced "gonna re-elect him"). Many victims have contracted it after having been screwed for the past 4 years, and in spite of having taken measures to protect themselves from this especially virulent disease.
Cognitive sequellae of individuals infected with Gonorrhea lecthim include, but are not limited to: Anti-social personality disorder traits; delusions of grandeur with a distinct messianic flavor; chronic mangling of the English language; extreme cognitive dissonance; inability to incorporate new information; pronounced xenophobia; inability to accept responsibility for actions; exceptional cowardice masked by acts of misplaced bravado; ignorance of geography and history; tendencies toward creating evangelical theocracies; and a strong propensity for categorical, all-or nothing behavior.
"6 BUSTED IN E. VILLAGE ATTACK ON COPSNovember 7, 2004 -- Six rowdy concert-goers were arrested in the East Village last night for tossing glass bottles at cops dispersing the crowd, police said.
More than 200 people had gathered for an afternoon concert in Tompkins Square Park where the punk group Leftover Crack sang songs urging violence against cops.
As the concert started to wind down at 6 p.m., witnesses said several unruly people started to skirmish with arriving officers. "I'm not going to lie. They were throwing bottles at the cops," said spectator Caroline Coughlin, 18. "But it was in reaction to the cops' violence." Four men and a woman face charges ranging from disorderly conduct to inciting a riot to resisting arrest.
A fifth man faces a criminal-mischief count for smashing the windows of a police car and drug charges after he was found with some leftover crack in his pocket. No one on either side was injured. "
Alternative Tentacles recording artist, Leftover Crack, have ended the latest leg of their extensive touring with a chaotic night in Arizona. The events at the Brickyard in Phoenix, Arizona and their implications as to the future of Leftover Crack have been hotly debated on the internet. The band's frontman, Stza Crack wanted to set the record straight and stress that the band has NOT broken up and no shows will be cancelled on the band's upcoming European and Southern US tours.
"First off we're are very excited to have four more years to slander a tried & true American Villain as our "leader", for a second we thought our 'Fuck World Trade' record cover was gonna be completely dated after a mere 2 months after it's release. Oh yeah, we are not broken up, we'll see the rest of you in Europe (Nov.10th-28th) & in the southeast of the U.S. (Dec. 10th-20th)"
So doubters beware, Leftover Crack are headed your way, lock up your liquor cabinets and spread the word!
P.S.- And don't believe everything you read on an internet messageboard!
... and don't forget that half of the country agrees that Dubya's a terrible Commander-In-Chief. Also, keep in mind that 51% of the vote is not a mandate, at least not in reality (in the Administration's reality it is, but their distrust of facts and truth is well-documented).
First up was the always awesome psyche-distorto-freakout-jam of Comets On Fire, followed by the ridiculously out of control rockin' punk of Fleshies. After these two local acts, the visiting teams got a chance to strut their stuff. Slim Cessna's Auto Club wowed everyone with their Texas-fried country-goth-rock-twang-abilly. A.T.'s latest signing The Bellrays were next, and made good on their reputation as one of the hottest live acts in the land with their patented vision of "Maximum Rock and Soul"!
Finally, the headliners- Jello Biafra with The Melvins- hit the stage, facing a sweaty, warmed-up, enthusiastic capacity crowd. They tore the roof off, stomped it into a bajillion pieces, then reassembled it with the combo of Jello's razor-sharp vocals and the Melvins power-tool tuneage! A Rock Miracle, to be sure, and one which pleased the leathered and lathered multitudes in attendence!
We had a great time, and we'd like to thank all the fans who came out and the 5 great bands who really made it happen. Props to Slim's for a smooth, rockin' Halloween, and a "Best Costume" award to the ape-girl (who was really a guy) with the AT Bat tattoo in the middle of her/his back. There were a ton of rad costumes, so competition was fierce! -Jesse the Male Mail
P.S.- We've all been busy since Halloween with the whole election thing, hence the late posting. We have some of the limited edition posters we had at the show available now through this site. We'll have the last of the 25th Anniversary shirts up on-line soon also.
From the Guardian UK
Bush tops film badman poll
Thursday October 28, 2004
George Bush may be neck-and-neck in the polls with John Kerry, but there is at least one survey that puts him on top - as cinema's best baddie.
The American president was awarded the dubious honour of Movie Villain of the Year for his part in Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 by 10,000 film fans polled by Total Film magazine.
Mr Bush beat stiff competition from Spider-Man 2's Doctor Octopus, played by Alfred Molina, and from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre's wannabe lumberjack, Leatherface. Even Gollum from The Lord of the Rings and Kill Bill assassin Elle Driver, played by Daryl Hannah, proved no match for the White House's current tenant.
Total Film editor Matt Mueller said Mr Bush was "absolutely terrifying" in Fahrenheit 9/11: "He looked like a man who had lost control - the famous scene where he sits there in a school, absolutely paralysed, after being told about the twin towers, is just one example.
"Lots of people saw [the movie] and movie-goers are saying that there's no one like George Bush to strike fear into people's hearts."