November 2010 News
November 19, 2010
“[Gifford] is a moving target, as omnivorous as he is prolific, having published poetry, novels, story collections, memoirs, biographies of William Saroyan and Jack Kerouac, art criticism, plays, screenplays, a libretto, and nonfiction monographs about horse racing and the Chicago Cubs. Even this kind of classification is inaccurate: his history of the Cubs is really a memoir, his poems read like prose, his prose like poetry. His most remarkable achievement to date, the Sailor and Lula saga, is equally hard to pin down. . . . “Like Romeo and Juliet only nobody dies,” Gifford writes at one point, though this is, again, somewhat misleading, since by the end of the saga very few characters have been spared a gruesome and abrupt death.
November 18, 2010
“Project Censored, quite simply, seeks media accountability. In our view, the only valid justification for declining a news story is that in a medium limited by time and space, another news story was simply more important to the people of the community, whether local, national or international. While admittedly a subjective process, it is nonetheless, a process to be undertaken by the news people themselves (the investigative journalists and editors), NOT by the managers and CEOs of their “parent company.” No professional journalist or researcher should ever have to face the destruction of his or her career (or life) simply because they wanted to tell the truth.” —Mickey Huff, in conversation with Mickey Z
November 16, 2010
The past week has been a banner one for Seven Stories authors on Democracy Now, with the following three features appearing since November 12:
November 13, 2010
Myanmar’s pro-democracy leader, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, was freed from seven and a half years of house arrest on Saturday and was greeted at the gate of her compound by thousands of jubilant supporters.
She stood waving and smiling as people cheered, chanted and sang the national anthem in a blur of camera flashes. She held a white handkerchief in one hand.
“Thank you for welcoming me like this,” she said, clutching the iron bars of her gate as she looked out at the cheering crowd. “We haven’t seen each other for so long, I have so much to tell you.”
She said she would speak again on Sunday at the headquarters of her now defunct political party, the National League for Democracy.
“We must unite!” she said. “If we are united, we can get what we want.”
November 12, 2010
Rampant alcoholism and drug addiction, the “soldier’s disease,” wrecked havoc on marriages. So did venereal disease, contracted from prostitutes known as “horizontal refreshments.” Symptoms included incontinence and impotence, and “No one knows how many Union and Confederate wives and widows went to their graves, rotted and ravaged by the pox that their men brought home,” writes Civil War medical historian Thomas Lowry.
Some demobilized husbands had grown closer to their wives through letters describing their experiences, including their fears, hopes, and emotional responses. Others, alienated by years of separation and hardship, had difficulty reconnecting with spouses. (“While you all was Haveing Such good times… on the 4th. we was Shooting Rebels,” one young soldier observed.) Some women had had extramarital sex. Others, expecting their husbands to die in combat, entered new relationships. Some sold themselves to survive. When many veterans and their waiting wives reunited, they made each other miserable until they finally sought relief in separation or divorce.
. . . What’s wrong? Are broken marriages an inherent risk of military service? The sad answer is yes. —Elizabeth Abbott
November 12, 2010
From our friends at Amnesty International:
The military rulers of Myanmar have jailed thousands of people in their continuing efforts to crush all dissenting views. Most prominent of those detained is Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate who has been the beacon of hope and change for nearly two decades in Myanmar, the Southeast Asian nation formerly known as Burma.
Aung San Suu Kyi, co-founded the National League for Democracy (NLD), a pro-democracy political party that sought to counter the military junta that had reigned over Myanmar since 1962. In 1990, the NLD won almost 80 percent of the parliamentary seats in a general election. Surprised at the landslide victory, the military junta refused to transfer power to Aung San Suu Kyi and the NLD, and jailed scores of political activists.
For 14 of the past 20 years, Aung San Suu Kyi (pronounced “Awng Sahn Soo Chee”) has endured unofficial detention, house arrest and restrictions on her movement. She continues to be held under house arrest in Yangon. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s sentencing comes in the midst of ongoing human rights violations by the military against ethnic minority civilians. In early June the Myanmar army staged attacks and took Karen civilians for forced labour in Kayin State. This resulted in over 3,500 refugees fleeing to Thailand.
Amnesty International seeks the immediate and unconditional release of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and all prisoners of conscience in Myanmar.
Take action now through Amnesty International: tell Myanmar that the only acceptable solution is immediate and unconditional release from a house arrest without justification, imprisonment that has gone on for twenty years too many.
November 9, 2010
This clip from Anti-American Manifesto author Ted Rall speaks for itself:
Already upon release, the right wing blogosphere has been erupting over Rall’s ideas. A representative quote:
“Why do you think we’ve been so concerned about 2nd Amendment rights, Mr. Rall? I don’t know any nutball liberals who own firearms, but I know quite a few conservatives who are well-armed and practiced in their use. Your lefty insurrection might just be the fastest way to purge the country’s cancer.” — PD Quig, commenting at Verum Serum
November 4, 2010
Anti-American Manifesto author Ted Rall will appear on the Dylan Ratigan Show on Monday, November 8 at 4 PM ET. Make sure to mark your calendars, and check out clips from the show on Ratigan’s site and from Seven Stories Press in the coming week!