So, what’s the picnic ? Well, we have another election cycle coming up, and the 2 major political parties ( by their own doing, the only major parties ) need ‘ boots on the ground ‘. More than that, they need all the little ants to ….. Vote! You remember how important voting is, don’t you? Since grade school, we’ve been sold a bill of goods that ‘ Voting is the most important civic duty one can perform ‘ . So, the real message is: Get out there and …… Don’t protest, don’t dissent in public, don’t challenge our elected officials……. Just Vote! At these festivals called elections, everyone is told that ‘ Your vote counts…. Use it! ‘ . What they fail to tell you is that , like in the old Chinese restaurants of my NYC youth, we only really get choices from Column A (Republicans )and Column B ( Democrats ) . Forget about those rigged electronic voting machines….. This is even more sinister!
The Libyan aid ship, the Amalthea, originally bound for the Gaza strip, has been diverted to a port in Egypt after the Israeli navy warned the vessel against trying to break an Israeli blockade on the Palestinian coastal territory, and is now moving very slowly towards El Arish port.
An Al Jazeera reporter on board said the vessel, carrying 2,000 tonnes of food and medicine, was met by a “wall” of Israeli gunships as it approached the Palestinian territory.
My eyes are burning as I type this. We’ve just returned from spending the day down in Barataria, located about an hour’s drive south of New Orleans. The community of fishermen is swimming in oil. Within minutes of arriving, our eyes begin to burn and we begin to feel dizzy from airborne chemicals from the oil and dispersant.
Like most of the rest of the Louisiana estuary, the further south one drives, the more one enters a culture that lives, eats, breaths and loves the water. Moss-laden oak trees, some with trunks more than four feet in diameter, line the road in places, before quickly giving way to canals, bayous and swamps that lap against the pavement.
Nader: What about the more serious violations of habeas corpus. You know after 9-11 Bush rounded up thousands of them, Americans, many of them Muslim Americans or Arabic Americans and they were thrown in jail without charges, they didn’t have lawyers, some of them were pretty mistreated in New York City. You know they were all released eventually.
Nader: Is that what you mean also about throwing people in jail without charges violating habeas corpus?
Napolitano: Well that is so obviously a violation of the natural law, the natural right to be brought before a neutral arbiter within moments of the government taking your freedom away from you. And the Constitution itself, as the Supreme Court in the Boumediene case pretty much said, wherever the government goes, the Constitution goes with it and wherever the Constitution goes are the rights of the Constitution as a guarantee and habeas corpus cannot be suspended by the president ever. It can only be suspended by the Congress in times of rebellion which in read Milligan says meaning rebellion of such magnitude that judges can’t get into their court houses. That has not happened in American history.
So what President Bush did with the suspension of habeas corpus, with the whole concept of Guantanamo Bay, with the whole idea that he could avoid and evade federal laws, treaties, federal judges and the Constitution was blatantly unconstitutional and is some cases criminal.
UPDATE: If you would like to watch the entire hour long interview from Book TV, C-SPAN has it available in their video library here.
Named by The Atlantic as one of the hundred most influential figures in American history, and by Time and Life magazines as one of the most influential Americans of the twentieth century, Ralph Nader has helped us drive safer cars, eat healthier food, breathe better air, drink cleaner water, and work in safer environments for more than four decades. The crusading attorney first made headlines in 1965 with his book Unsafe at Any Speed, a scathing indictment that lambasted the auto industry for producing unsafe vehicles. The book led to congressional hearings and automobile safety laws passed in 1966, including the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act. He was instrumental in the creation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC), and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). Many lives have been saved by Nader’s involvement in the recall of millions of unsafe consumer products, including defective motor vehicles, and in the protection of laborers and the environment. By starting dozens of citizen groups, Ralph Nader has created an atmosphere of corporate and governmental accountability.
On July 12th, after one postponement, the POTA (Peace of the Action) 3, plus 3, went to trial in DC Superior Court for our arrests after the ANSWER rally and march on March 20th (the 7th anniversary of the illegal and immoral invasion of Iraq).
On March 20th, after the rally and march, Elaine Brower of MFSO (Military Families Speak Out) and Matthis Chiroux of IVAW (Iraq Vets Against the War) accompanied some mock coffins that were in the march to the sidewalk in front of the White House. Even though there were thousands of people in attendance, Matthis and Elaine (and two others that didn’t end up going to trial) were the only ones that lay on the sidewalk.