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Two events: Freedom (free) movie and Solidarity Action at Gallery Hop on Saturday, October 1, 2011

Two events: Freedom (free) movie and Solidarity Action at Gallery Hop on Saturday, October 1, 2011

12noon – “Freedom,” a documentary on the Deepwater Horizon Guld oil spill, at the Studio 35 Cinema and Drafthouse and it’s completely FREE. Please don’t miss this chance to support FREEDOM and help sustain the world’s future!

“Occupy Columbus” solidarity protest at Gallery Hop today – time changed
The time for the march today has been changed. Marchers will assemble at 5:30 on Wexner Plaza (15th & High) & step off no later than 6pm. JOIN US! In New York the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protesters will be marching at 3PM. It’s anticipated to be the largest march yet. The aim here is to have a march this Saturday for the Gallery Hop to show our solidarity with the OWS protests and to spread the word. The plan is to meet up at NEW TIME: 5PM at 15th and High Street near the Wexner Center to make signs and then march to the Short North.
See https://www.facebook.com/OccupyColumbus#!/event.php?eid=208282725904563 for details.

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Fight Back This Week: Medea Benjamin Cofounder CODEPINK

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back” this week:
Guest Medea Benjamin, cofounder of the peace group CODEPINK and the human rights organization Global Exchange
Bob and Medea will discuss her recent experience in the Middle East and 10 years of U.S. wars.
Listen and call in this Wednesday September 28 – talktainmentradio.com
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766

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Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766

*************************

Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766

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Render Unto Rove The Things That Are Rogue And Unto God The Things That Are God’s

September 25, 2011

The original notice that Karl Rove, former Senior Advisor to President George W. Bush, would be speaking at Cedarville University in Ohio came from Warcriminalswatch.org. What piqued my interest is how a Bible-based fundamentalist university would invite the country’s most famous Machiavellian to speak on Constitution Day.

As a frequent critic of Rove, my writings have argued that he’s not only a war criminal as Bush’s advisor during the illegal Iraq War, but also a violator of human rights on the issue of torture for supporting Bush’s torture policies. Also, I’ve argued that he’s a criminal racketeer because of his illegal activities regarding the Florida presidential election in 2000 and the Ohio election in 2004.

To Cedarville University’s credit, the Alpha Sigmas invited me to speak prior to Rove’s visit and outline my case against him. The 60 or so people who filled the lecture room applauded politely at the beginning, and even at the end, but that was nothing compared to the standing ovation Rove would get in the Jeremiah Chapel during his introduction and conclusion.

The title of Rove’s Constitution Day speech was “2012: Choosing our Future.” This was a little less academic than my “The Rovian Dilemma: Machiavellian or Moralist” speech.

Rove was shockingly charming during his introduction. Preceding him, perhaps ironically, the school’s choir belted out The Battle Hymn of the Republic” a northern battle cry to greet the faux Texan, Rove.

Rove began by reading the preamble to the Constitution and then introducing his theme of the “big choices” before the thousands assembled. He launched into a fairly detailed attack on the Obama stimulus plan around the talking point “we cannot spend our way to prosperity.” In Rove’s analysis, Bush’s trillion dollar bailout of the “too big to fail” investment banks is forgotten, as is the massive debt run up under his administration, the great recession he triggered, and the yearly surplus that existed at the end of the Clinton years.

Rove should be given credit for not using rubber numbers in his current criticism of Obamanomics. However, he pushed heavily what scholars call “the Horatio Alger myth,” where mythical small entrepreneurs under a limited government flourish and save America. Rove’s plea to continue the un-taxing of the rich, many of them contributors to Rove’s American Crossroads political action committee (PAC), centered around the theme “we’re not a country of resentment.”

Apparently, poor people and middle class people get excited and draw pleasure from the lifestyles of the rich, famous and untaxed. In the Rovian world, working people like to pack up factories and help giant corporation move to China because they know what’s good for rich people is good for America. And, after all, if anybody who wants can get rich, why do you really need any social problems that aid the poor and unemployed?

But where Rove really milks the applause from the fundamentalist crowd is on the subject of all things militaristic. As one of our country’s most famous chicken hawks, Rove liked to talk about the “nine young men in uniform in Dr. Smith’s class” where he had lectured earlier in the day on political science. One can only hope that the men in uniform there would honor their oath to the U.S. Constitution and their specific commitment to defend it against all enemies foreign and domestic, by arresting Rove.

His big ending centered around a Navy Seal who had taken enemy fire in his face and by God, that SEAL was one of God’s happiest men for the privilege of waging war in a far-off land for ever shifting reasons, against ill-equipped foes. What Rove realizes is that modern right-wing fundamentalism has merged Christianity and nationalism and that Cedarville’s version of the corporate war-mongering Jesus prevails over the Prince of Peace and the Christ of the Sermon on the Mount.

What Rove took from Machiavelli is obvious. Machiavelli famous advice to the Prince – to be the first one out on high holy days, to make a public demonstration of religious ritualistic commitment, but not taking any of Jesus’ actual values seriously.

Rove took the same approach to the U.S. Constitution, going out of his way to praise Obama only for not closing Guantanamo Bay. “I applaud him for it,” Rove stated.

In Rove’s final shredding of the U.S. Constitution, he told the students that there are no rights for “bad people” at Guantanamo because they’re “not a criminal, but an enemy.” Apparently in Rove’s world, due process for criminals and military combatants are waived if you’re a “bad person.”

He went on to justify his analysis in one of the most convoluted applications of logic that I’ve heard in recent memory. In an analysis that would have made Machiavelli blush, he gave Bush the credit for killing Osama bin Laden by arguing that during enhanced interrogation (read: torture) five years earlier, some bad people at Guantanamo lied about some people in Pakistan. Thus, five years later, people working for Obama were able to figure out that the people being tortured under Bush lied and were actually working for Osama bin Laden. Hence, the undiscovered lies from the torture victims led to the killing of bin Laden.

In a press conference prior to his speech on the Constitution, Rove told reporters that he plans to raise a quarter of a billion dollars with his independent PACS American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS to influence the election in key battleground states like Ohio. In 2004, a Cedarville professor and some students helped then-Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell monitor Ohio’s election count, even when it was outsourced to a Republican-owned computer company in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Computer security expert Stephen Spoonamore, a lifelong Republican, has denounced that shift of the vote counting as a “man-in-the-middle attack” that illegally altered the vote count between Kerry and Bush in Bush’s favor.

Cedarville University must worry about whether it gains access to the political world of Karl Rove, but loses its soul. The University must render under Rove the things that are illegal and render under God their conscience.


Bob Fitrakis has a Ph.D. in political science and a J.D. and teaches political theory and American Government.

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Fight Back Two Shows 9/11 Patriot Act U.S. Economy

Fight Back Sept. 13, 2011 – Bob and Connie discuss 9/11 and the subsequent Patriot Act, illegal wars, and destruction of the U.S. economy

Fight Back Tue, 09/20/2011 Bob Fitrakis and Connie Gadell Newton interview Erin Upchurch on a leadership program from GLBTQ youth

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Free Press Free Movie Joan Sekler’s “Locked Out” Labor In California

Free Movie
Tuesday, September 27
Locked Out: A documentary about a fight to save the middle class
7:30PM followed by discussion

This documentary tells the David and Goliath story of how miners in Boron, California fought the Rio Tinto Group that drastically cut the workers’ benefits. Rio Tinto threatened the miners in Boron–either accept their cutbacks in the new contract or find themselves locked out of work. On January 30th, 2010 the workers voted unaminously to reject the company’s proposed contract and on January 31st, 2010, they were locked out of work. The workers faced financial hardships but stood strong during the 107 day lockout and beat back a multinational corporation. It further reveals Rio Tinto’s egregious practices in the U.S. and around the globe–from Michigan to Australia to Bougainville.
Drexel Theater 2254 E. Main Street, Bexley
Co-sponsored by the Drexel Theater, Central Ohio Green Education Fund, and the Film Council of Columbus
253-2571, truth@freepress.org

See this link for interview w/Joan Sekler:
http://fraudbusterbob.com/blog/2011/08/30/fight-back-podcast-joan-sekler-lock-out-labor-in-california/

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Fight Back Call In Rubén Castilla Herrera Immigration Rights Movement

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: Guest Rubén Castilla Herrera,
Ohio activist involved with the national and local immigration rights movement
Listen and call in this Wednesday September 21
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766

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Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766

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Fight Back: Norman Solomon Author And Political Candidate Podcast

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back”: Norman Solomon
Progressive candidate for Congress and
author of a dozen books on media, political discourse and public policy,
including “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death”
Listen and call in this Wednesday September 14
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766

*************************

Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766

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The Most Important Election Issue In America: Issue 2 In Ohio

Bob Fitrakis
September 6, 2011

Labor Day has come and gone, but the real battle over whether workers are actually honored and valued in Ohio will be decided on Election Day in November. To understand what’s at stake, one must begin with the concept of American exceptionalism — the notion that America has its own unique political ideology embracing individualism and entrepreneurship.

The reality is that what makes America different from other western European democracies is simply its lack of a mass Labor Party or a Democratic Socialist Party. The Democratic Party is arguably the second most pro-corporate party in the western world, and President Barack Obama reminds us of this daily. Obama’s numbers have hit record lows with only 26% of the population having any faith in his economic policies.

In a time that cried out for infrastructure development and large scale jobs programs, Obama instead spent his political capital and three quarters of a trillion dollars in taxpayers’ capital bailing out the financial corporations that had wrecked the system and the large corporations known for investing in machines and people overseas, not American workers.

Only the Republican Party, captured by an unnatural coalition of Christian zealots and corporatists are more anti-labor. Thus, it is no surprise in the Buckeye State, when one of Rupert Murdoch’s right-wing populist mouthpieces John Kasich, seized control of the governor’s office and immediately followed the corporatist policies championed by Mussolini in Italy.

Kasich’s agenda of destroying the public sector unions embodied in Senate Bill 5, hides a deeper philosophical contempt for ordinary working people. Kasich has spent his whole life serving wealthy and powerful men at the expense of those who labor.

First, as a young college student in the 70s, Kasich came to prominence in Ohio by becoming one of Nixon’s squeaky-clean campaign-prop youth. After his stint in Nixon’s youth corp, he managed to get himself elected to Congress in 1992 after tying his campaign to the so-called Messiah, Rev. Moon, who had been linked at the time to the Korean CIA.

After leaving Congress, Kasich threw in with the hate-monger and illegal hacker extraordinaire Murdoch and his News Corp. The agenda of his three mentors — Nixon, Moon and Murdoch — has always been to destroy labor in the United States. All three have been masters of promoting so-called wedge issues to divide American working people along race, ethnic, and religious lines in order to deliver more power to a small group of their wealthy backers and friends.

In the fantasy world of America, still taught by mainstream political scientists, we live in a “pluralist” society where people make their political voices heard by joining groups. This concept developed in the 1950s by noted political scientist Robert Dahl. Like economist Charles Lindbloom, Dahl initially argued that the 50s corporations were counterbalanced by organized labor. This “countervailing power” created a certain equilibrium in American power.

As the U.S.-based transnational corporations grew larger and more global in the 1970s and union membership declined dramatically, Dahl began to rethink his political theory in a series of books. At the beginning of the 21st century, Dahl published “How democratic is the American Constitution?” arguing that the Constitution is far less democratic than we openly debate. His realization that two corporate political parties is simply one more than a fascist dictatorship, by that time, was dawning on the current remaining political science theorists.

So, as the major theorists of pluralism bemoan the rise of transnational corporate power and the decline of labor, Kasich’s attempt to squash in the former industrial state of Ohio is arguably the most important issue on the ballot this November in the United States.

If Kasich succeeds in destroying the public unions in Ohio, he will effectively destroy the last vestiges of organizations that allowed people who work for a wage or salary to actively participate in Ohio politics. With the destruction of the unions comes the new 21st century power slogan and sound bite fascism, where the population will be pitted against each other – new immigrant against old, Christians against Muslims, public workers with pensions against private workers whose pensions were looted or denied by corporations – while Kasich’s friends will get richer.

To honor labor in the aftermath of Labor Day, workers who value democracy must campaign and say no on Issue 2, the repeal of SB 5. But, beyond that, they need to develop new political organizations to express their discontent with the right-wing corporate Republican Party and their junior partners, the Democrats.

Bob Fitrakis is the author of The Idea of Democratic Socialism in America and the Decline of the Socialist Party a book of political theory on American exceptionalism.

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Fight Back James Fetzer Founder Of Scholars For 9/11 Truth

Bob Fitrakis on “Fight Back” this week:
James Fetzer – McKnight Professor Emeritus at the University of Minnesota Duluth,
a former Marine Corps officer, and Founder of Scholars for 9/11 Truth.

Listen and call in this Wednesday September 7
7 – 8 PM
Call 877-932-9766

*************************

Here’s how to call in to the LIVE INTERNET radio show:
(on your computer – not on your broadcast radio dial)
On Wednesday nights at 7:00 pm
Go to: http://talktainmentradio.com
Click on “Listen Live”
Call 877-932-9766

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Free Press Second Saturday Salon Sept. 10

Come to the Free Press Second Saturday Salon
This Saturday, Sept. 10
6:30pm to midnight
Featuring food, drink, music, art.
1021 E. Broad St.
253-2571, truth@freepress.org
next month, Insurgent Theatre