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DI6 Easter Sunday 2006 premier info... [17 Mar 2006|02:14pm]

s6k Entertainment Tesco-Distro USA
Voidstar Productions
Douglas P. / Death In June
screenings of Behind the Mask & Live In New York
[Easter Sunday, April 16th 2006 - 3 pm to 8 pm]
chashama Arts 217 E 42nd St. [btwn 2nd & 3rd aves]
graciously presented by chashama Arts www.chashama.org
for complete info: http://www.s6k.com/deathinjunebtm_premier.php
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s6k Presents Another State of the State of the Union [31 Jan 2006|08:42pm]

Many Americans, even liberals, have stated that the economy is mostly doing okay except in certain areas; ghettos, rural areas and such. This flies in the face of any factual accounting...even from the unaffected government officials themselves.

Most of the economic indicators quoted in the mainstream media focus on Gross Domestic Product [G.D.P.] and the National Unemployment Rate. We believe that neither of these prove to be accurate indicators.

The most accurate and egalitarian forecasting devices, to us, are the National Foreclosure Rate and the National Personal Savings Rate. Both of these describe people on many sides of the economic scale.

Foreclosures [having to forfeit your home because you can no longer afford it] are escalating at a dangerous rate and the US has a negative National Personal Savings Rate [the amount of money you have left over after expenses]. Both of these indicators are exasterbated by the growth of personal debt and the ever rising trend of layoffs, downsizing and forced retirement.

None of the promises you will hear during the "State of the Union" speech will address these issues head on. They may be mentioned as mere economic speed bumps... but not serious national issues that demand immediate attention.

Below are 3 links that illustrate in detail what our true State of the Union is. If you take a bit of time to check these out [they're very digestible exposes'], you'll be armed for the discussions you will most certainly have at the worksite, in the office, the breakroom and the bedroom.

---> Americans Saving Less than Nothing:
Spending could outstrip income in 2005, which hasn't happened since the Depression

---> Personal Savings rate graph

---> A Bane Amid The Housing Boom: Rising Foreclosures

sektor 6 kommunikations is dedicated to providing you with thoughtful, egalitarian perspectives without "liberal" or "conservative' biases. We are extreme lovers of independently verifiable documention. We believe that we would be a disservice to you if we were to provide our opinion and just ask you to believe us. Our only mission is to find and expose the truth as we, and you, can verify it.

Please feel free to scrutinize, provide us with alternative information and the like. We are only as strong as the information network we share with you. We thank you for your time and continued support.

Peaceness and Sledgehammers,
Darryl Hell
President and Founder of sektor 6 kommunikations
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RUNews_Bomb Sniffing Dog Proves itself to be a Dud [18 Jan 2006|09:19am]

Police dog leaps fence and bites Girl Scout

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 01/18/06

As she bounced on a trampoline, the 9-year-old Girl Scout could see the police dog jumping the fence and approaching her.
That's when Courtney Imoukhuede of Lawrence­ville ran for the door.

But she didn't make it.

On Jan. 9, the female Belgian Malinois, a bomb-sniffing dog for the DeKalb County police, attacked the girl at her neighbor's house, where she was attending a Girl Scout meeting.

Courtney received five bite marks on her lower back and several more on her arm from the 2-year-old dog, according to Gwinnett County police.

DeKalb police Officer John Hansen, the dog's handler, kept the animal at his house in the Knollwood Lakes subdivision.

He was cited with two misdemeanors: failure to restrain his animal and public nuisance/attacks without provocation, police said.

The dog has been impounded in DeKalb County.

"The girl was in the backyard, minding her own business," said Darren Moloney, a spokesman for the Gwinnett police.

Bomb dogs are kept by the officers assigned to them, not at police stations. DeKalb police are looking into why the dog attacked the girl.

"Bomb dogs are not trained to be aggressive and to bite. They are trained to sniff and alert," said Corey Hughes, spokesman for the DeKalb police. "Why did the dog jump a 6-foot fence? Why did the dog bite somebody?"

Courtney's mother, Gail Imoukhuede, said the dog had been barking a lot for the past three weeks.

"The dog was very excitable and agitated," she said. "I'm very disappointed with DeKalb County that they would house such an expensive dog in a neighborhood with children.

"We are talking about a big, scary, trained dog."

Staff writer John Girardini contributed to this report.
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RUNews_The Continued Dream; Observing Martin Luther King's B-Day [16 Jan 2006|08:38am]

[ mood | contemplative ]

In the name of preserving an accurate vision of what Martin Luther King stood for, I present to you our annual offering of the complete text of MLK's "I Have a Dream" speech. It was given in Washington in 1963 during a day of national Black resistance and protest, remembered for the March on Washington, DC.

The excerpts you normally read or hear are from the last three paragraphs of the speech. Once you have read the entire speech you will understand how much our current situations were clearly articulated by Martin, and others, more than 40 years ago...and 140 years ago.

---> Delivered on the steps at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963.
Source: Martin Luther King, Jr: The Peaceful Warrior, Pocket Books, NY 1968

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free.

One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land.

So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition. In a sense we have come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.

This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check which has come back marked "insufficient funds." But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation.

So we have come to cash this check -- a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God's children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights.

The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges. But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. we must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.

The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.

We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" we can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair. I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal." I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with a new meaning, "My country, 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim's pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring." And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania! Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California! But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia! Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee! Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"

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You May Be A Class Member!

DATE: Wednesday, January 18, 2006

TIME: 6:00 PM

The FEMA case, McWaters v. FEMA, a class action, filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana on November 10, 2005 challenges FEMA’s failure to, among other things, fulfill its mandate to provide housing assistance to the Katrina survivors and its inexcusably slow processing of applications. The Court recently ordered extending the deadline for housing in hotels to February 7, 2005. One of the lawyers working on the McWaters case will be speaking at our next meeting.

SPEAKER: Daniel L. Greenberg, Esq.
Schulte Roth & Zabell
(An attorney representing Survivors in McWaters)

LOCATION: Local 1199 Service Employees
International Union (SEIU)
330 West 42nd Street
(Between 8th and 9th avenues)
9th Floor
New York, New York

(Trains: A/C/E TO 42ND Street/8th Avenue; 2/3/1/N/R//7 to Times Square; D/F/B TO 42ND Street & 6th Avenue)

Sponsored by the New York City Solidarity Coalition for Katrina/Rita Survivors. For further information call: (718) 789-1732.
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s6kMedia Blipvert: Death In June "Behind the Mask is Out Now!" [06 Jan 2006|08:33am]

[ mood | accomplished ]

The long awaited Death In June "Behind the Mask" DVD/VHS has recieved a wonderful level of support from fans as well as people who find Douglas' story-telling interesting. 5 weeks since its release [nov 28, 2005], it's now obvious BTM has captured the interest and imagination of Douglas' devout fanbase.

We thank all of you for your words [...and purchases :) ] of support. We've had international support that's been evenly split between the international and US music communities.

Check out the Official Death In June "Behind the Mask" Website for up-to-date info on contests, BTM merchandise, reviews and more;

Happy New Fear
s6k Entertainment
Voidstar Productions & Douglas P.

btw - have you seen the BTM Tactical Assault Vest?

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s6kArts Blipvert: DI6 "BTM" release delayed 168 hrs. [19 Nov 2005|08:15pm]

Unfortunately, we have to push back the release date 7 days.
for complete info check out the DI6 "BTM's" new website
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Douglas. P.--BEHIND THE MASK--Official Website [17 Nov 2005|12:14pm]

Douglas. P.--BEHIND THE MASK--Official Website
Forty feet beneath the surface, Darryl Hell's interview experiment
with Douglas P. took place amongst the rumbles, hisses, and thunks of
the belly of a New York City skyscraper...during a harsh January 2005
blizzard. This would be the first time Douglas would take part in this
type of interview project.

check out the new web site:
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last day to preorder Death In June's Behind the Mask [15 Nov 2005|12:56am]

Today, 11/15, is the LAST DAY to pre-order Death In June's Behind The Mask from the Voidstore.
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Death In June - Dead by Halloween; answer [31 Oct 2005|10:11am]

Well…we've had a lot of response to this one. We thank everyone for
participating. This question was easier than the last due to it being
easily "google-able." The first and second place answers had a
difference of only 11 minutes!

The drum roll please… and the winner is…

What was the name of the A-side of the first released vinyl Douglas played on?

From: Michael Petzold <micheal.pentzold@gmx.net> onto the HELL-o-ween goodies…

Micheal wins:
$200 credit from the Voidstore
[ http://www.noisebase.com/voidstore ]
$100 credit at Tesco-Distro USA
[ http://www.tesco-distro.com ]

the credits include tax and shipping...so anything over the limit is
on him...but that's still $300 worth of free stuff! :)-
(note) We had said in our last contest that Douglas' father was in the
British Air Corps, which is incorrect.
Actually, as you may know, he was in the Royal Air Force. Oops...

Again, we thank you all for participating.
We also give special thanks to Jane Elizabeth at Tesco for her ongoing support.
D Hell, Jane E., Deftly D
s6k Entertainment & Tesco-Distro USA

Remember, only 14 days left to pre-order the Darryl Hell interview experiment,
"Douglas P. Behind the Mask." Pre-order deadline is Nov. 15th.
No orders will be accepted that are dated after Nov.15th...
UNTIL...the official release date of Nov. 21st.
order now @ - http://www.noisebase.com/voidstore

Don't leave yet. At long last, here are the answers to our
"Death In June: Words from Behind the Mask-An Audience Interview"
Hope you enjoy them…because Douglas seemed to.

ludicroussmiles@juno.com to contact

Could you describe in detail the falling out of David Tibet and/or
Jhonn Balance and how that has affected you personally?

[Douglas] To describe "in detail" the cumulative effect of the slow but gradual
deterioration of our relationship would take too long and I'm past being
interested in it, let alone concerned by it. Suffice to say that whilst I
could live with Tibet using my name gratuitously on the credits of a
homophobic album he released by Tiny Tim or him slamming the telephone
down on me a couple of times in a fit of pique when I showed the
temerity to
actually disagree with him, probably about religious matters, I really
couldn't abide seeing his name attached to legal documents instructing
people like Geff Rushton (John Balance) to get as much dirt on me as
possible to help world serpent distribution in their legal case against me.
Particularly galling was that the instruction came with a note saying that
those individuals concerned should be quiet regarding his secret
instructions to them!

Those actions were really lower than a snake's belly and he sealed his fate
as far as I'm concerned. No wonder he has gone on to even disown himself.
He/current 93 ceased to exist from there on.

Andrew Fletcher to contact


Death In June has largely been your personal project for over twenty
years. A man's life, thoughts and philosophies can undergo many
changes in this course of time. Do you find that whatever inspired
you at the inception of Death In June continues to inspire you today?

Best Regards,

Andrew Fletcher

[Douglas] The inspirations that permeated every aspect of my Existence
from. Say the ages of 20-30, still very much hold sway in my Life
today now I'm
approaching 50. But, once you have read the Highway Code you shouldn't
really need to perpetually return to it to know the rules of the road! Or,
if you do you probably weren't a very good learner in the first place. You
adapt, adopt and improvise as the road becomes longer and longer, perhaps
more treacherous. There's no hope of ever having enough fuel to get back to
where you came from, anyway.

emma korn <hexwife@gmail.com> to contact

If the price was right, would you give my boyfriend and me piano
lessons? If not, do you think David Tibet would be up for it.


[Douglas] The only piano lessons I've ever had were sitting in front
of a keyboard
by myself and placing my fingers in positions where I thought they sounded
pleasing. I suggest you save your money and do the same.

David Tibet, to the best of my knowledge, can't play any instrument. That's
the reason why he gets people like me into his group to write songs for him.

Sadly, when his ego is threatened he will later deny they ever existed and
attempt to write them out of history. He's a better joker than musician and
justly deserves to be remembered as such. You should pay to see his stand up
routine but definitely not for piano lessons.

Uri Shaham <uri.shaham@retalix.com> to contact

dear douglas
I know you never answer to questions about your lyrics but I still intend to try
my question is about 'rose clouds of holocaust' my feeling about this
song is that it is talking about the friendship between you and tibet.

I know it was written while you were still friends but sometimes art
can show things that will happen in the future. the reason I feel this
way is because I know the main line of the song is about a certain
moment on the beach and another line 'festivals end as festivals must'
can be also about a friendship that
ended. maybe you can add something to this theory ? what do you think?

all the very best
Uri Shaham

[Douglas] "Festivals end as Festivals must" is actually a newspaper
headline I saw in 1980 referring to Yukio Mishima's suicide in 1970 at
the Eastern Army
Barracks in Tokyo. There was no beach in Iceland where Tibet and I discussed
"Auschwitz by the Sea" at The Blue Lagoon in the middle of a blizzard.
Only the bleak surrounding volcanic landscape. It was a momentary
that led to 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust'.

However, on that same album the song 'Lifebooks' does directly relate to
probably the most intense and strange conversation Tibet and I ever had in a
pub in the West End of London near Leicester Square in about 1993/94.

I very much agree with your point that some art can mutate over the course
of time as I find out with my own work. When I sing lyrics today I know
where the original inspiration came from and realize how I can now put those
lyrics in another context it really does make me wonder about the purpose of
the original. It certainly is food for thought, Uri!

Michael Fay <michaelfay1@adelphia.net> to contact

Hello, Douglas P. Please name your Gods.
Thank you, Michael Fay, 3195 Via De Caballo, Encinitas, California

[Douglas] Whoever answers my prayers in the most efficient and expedient way
possible. My Gods are the ones that work!

Steffen Fahrner to contact

Hallo Douglas,

here my question:

Has there been a time when you heard and maybe even liked the music of
Pink Floyd or Roger Waters?

Thank you in advance and all the best for you and your work.


[Douglas] I loved early, Syd Barratt era Pink Floyd. I bought the 'Relics'
compilation as a teenager, became hooked and then bought the first 2 albums
and Syd's solo material. I never had more than a passing interest in the
work that followed. I've never heard a Roger Waters solo album.

Wendy Layne [mailto:scaevol@hotmail.fr]

Comment interpretez-vous votre chanson "c'est un rêve", que doit-on
comprendre par "il est dans nos coeurs noirs (Klaus Barbie)?

(after a French to English translator, which is not exactly perfect, we get:)

How do you interpretez your song "it is a dream", which must one
include/understand by "it is in our black cores (Klaus Barbie)?

[Douglas] Klaus Barbie was only a symbol. Nothing special. The Balkans
war in the 1990s, the genocide in Rwanda and our present war without
end in Iraq all
easily demonstrate this.

The song was inspired by some performances in France in early 1984 where it
was rumoured that DIJ had tried to make contact with him during our visit to
Lyon where he was in prison. Naturally, it was only a rumour but, an
inspirational one as far as my song writing was concerned!

Juan Almarza Anwandter <ahnenerbe@yahoo.com> to contact

Hola Doug,

I would like to know if you know anything about the
work of chilean writer Miguel Serrano...some of his
topics may be of your interest, for sure.


Juan A.
Der Arbeiter


[Douglas] I haven't read any work by Miguel Serrano but I've heard I should.

Sergio Olivera <sergioob77@hotmail.com> to contact

Hi, here's my question:

Do you feel comfortable within thought-line of the european new right (being
De Benoist one of its more recognised exponents, inspired by both
left-right, influenced for the konservative revolution -Jünger, Heidegger,
Spengler, Schmitt,..- and demanding a philosophical return to paganism),
from a political (though is more about metapolitics than politics per sé)
and philosophical point of view?

Sergio de Olivera

[Douglas] I truly only feel comfortable with myself regarding any 'political'
trains of thought.

phil eaglesham <fatskin@hotmail.com> to godsandbeasts, contact

Thank you for this and hello Douglas.
'Astounded to be celebrating 20yrs of the release of Nada! with you
this month, what are your fondest reflections and bitterest memories
of that inspiring period of DI6's past?'
p6 (Scotland) x
ps. I still await a copy of 'Alarm Agents' despite payment in December!

[Douglas] I think the best memory is the dawn walk to the Thames
Embankment near the recording studios at Waterloo for a Champagne
breakfast. After we had
finished the album we knew we had something special and that we should

The worst, at that time, was when Patrick Leagas went missing after our tour
of Italy in April, 1985. I really had to think very quickly on my feet
during that period but in retrospect it was all for the beast!

Doctrine Insectvas <doctsect@hotmail.com> to contact

a thought on: "Why? & Why not?"
Do you care for the differences they distinguish...anymore?

Cordell Klier

[Douglas] I'm not sure if I ever did care about the differences. I act
on instinct
and never call that into question.

xMxx <keesterbunny@comcast.net> to contact

What are your biggest influences to you as a person. Things/people that
effect your music, your morals, etc. what/whom effects you the most;
literature, music, pop culture, etc. and any authors, musicians,
politicians. etc, whom you feel a great sense of inspiration from?

Randy Fulgham, California.

[Douglas] How does one list so much without it sounding like a bland shopping
list? I've said it all before anyway and I won't demean all those important
moments, works, people, loves, actions and feelings. I was born at 09.00
hrs. on Friday, the 27th April 1956 in a terraced council house on an
industrial estate in Woking, Surrey in the South of England and I am now 49
years old writing this at 14.45 hrs on a citrus block acres and acres in
size in the Riverland area of South Australia, Sunday, 28th August, 2005.
All of My Life and all that has come with it has been the inspiration.
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Will Israel Start WW 3? [03 Oct 2005|06:29pm]

Will Israel Start World War Three?
And finish the set-up the US started by radicalizing and arming Iran in the first place

Paul Joseph Watson/Alex Jones | October 2 2005

Israeli rhetoric towards Iran has considerably heated in the last few weeks as the world hurtles towards an inevitable confrontation over Iran's nuclear programs.

Last week three senior Israeli lawmakers went public to warn that Israel would act unilaterally to eliminate any perceived Iranian threat. Yosef Lapid, head of the centrist opposition Shinui Party in the Knesset stated, "Threats of sanctions and isolation alone will not do it, we feel we are obliged to warn our friends that Israel should not be pushed into a situation where we see no other solution but to act unilaterally."

Story continues, click link
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RUNews_Critically Massed [01 Oct 2005|09:45am]

[ mood | Restful ]

I decided to do the Critical Mass bike ride again, (after a few
months off, for good behavior). It was sad to see how few people
showed up for the ride. Usually the whole back part of Union Square
is filled with chatty cyclists of all shapes and sizes. This time,
there were about 150 people, milling around the steps on 14th St.

After some speeches and stuff, The ride started going west on
14St.... but right from the beginning, I watched several groups get
separated and we ended up losing all momentum, we weren't traffic, we
were stuck in traffic. within a block from the start, I was in a
cluster of people that got totally fucked over by the police. We were
out numbered and squashed in and by 7th Ave., even though we were
following the traffic laws, (we stopped for the lights at 6th &
7th!!!!???????!!!!???), they brought the scooters around and they
just started arresting people.

Having been through enough rides, I was still blown away by this. No provocation, no time to pedal, no nothing. I was even talking to one of the scooter cops, moments
before, commenting on what a small turn out, that they out number us
and how bizarre it is that we're stopping at the lights, I've seen
and talked to these guys for years now.

As he's saying to me, "if you people followed the laws like this, we wouldn't be bothering you", up ahead of us, a 1/4 of a block, in stopped traffic, they just moved in
on us. I had brought a friend along, who was new to Critical Mass,
and of course, some white shirt fancy cop brass is trying to get us
to walk over to him to be arrested.

I'm screaming at my friend to turn around and go the other way, my friend's pissed off that we're walking the bikes on the sidewalk and not riding, oblivious that
people are being arrested right in front of him, and I have a camera
in my hand, torn between trying to shoot what's going on, and getting
the fuck away from the cops ourselves.

I'm glad my friend followed me, because the kids in front of us all got arrested. We get on 7th
Ave, and I'm trying to have a conversation with a "community liaison"
officer, asking why they would pull shit when nothing was happening
illegally... ha ha ha....She didn't know enough toooooo....... By
the time we recouped, we lost any trail of bikes and although I saw
many flashing police lights on 8th Ave. We ended up on the west side
bike lane, and took a ride up to 125 St.

We ran into some other people who lost the ride too. We talked of wishes and possibilities
of a Central Park ride, for Halloween, where it would be an enjoyable
party ride and gathering and we don't have to play fucking cat and
mouse with military battalions, who are coordinating our movements
with helicopters and command centers and staging areas for their
other resources of thuggery.

There has to be a way of connecting back to the spirit of what this ride has been for years. They're playing real dirty. I believe whole heartedly in the beliefs of what this
ride means. A new approach is starting the ride from several places,
like Washington & Tompkin Square parks, aside from the main place,
Union Square, but I don't see having small groups of people starting
in different places, and worming around town until they're found out,
having an impact on the city.

All that means is that the police are able to quarter the group they target and take people with more ease. The conversation of having several groups winding through the city,
with the hope of meeting up at some point, loses the focus of what a
"critical mass", is.

There is more safety and power in the mass. That was the beauty of this thing. Although, watching a dozen people on bikes, being chased down by several unmarked cars, a dozen
scooters, multiple "emergency vehicles" and a fucking helicopter, is
some sort of testament to the stupidity of the powers that be. But
how many regular folks does this actually have an impact on. Except
to wonder, boy those tattered kids on their bikes, must've done
something really bad to warrant that.
A cold wind did blow last night.
Pete 23

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RUNews_Do you Live Where You Want to Live or Where You Can Live? [22 Sep 2005|10:46pm]

[ mood | grateful ]

I saw this on MSN.

This article makes nearly no mention of the foreclosure rate, which is at quite an uncomfortable level.

Below the MSN story, I've included one from Consumer Reports. A much more edifying analysis on the housing market.

Home Sweet Extortionists Home
Peaceness and Sledgehammers,

-------------------MSN article-------------------------

The 20 most expensive cities for renters

With a weaker jobs picture and cheap mortgages inspiring home purchases, the rental market's been in a slump. In some places, though, you'd never know it. $17,000 a month for a two-bedroom?
More from MSN Money and Forbes

* Slideshow: The most expensive rental markets in America
* What it costs to live well in the U.S
* Most overpriced places in the U.S. 2005
* MSN Real Estate: See what rents are like in your town
* Could you afford to buy instead? See what rates are like

Lately, all of the real estate talk has been about buying, selling and prices that keep going up, up, up.

Conventional wisdom has it that it makes more sense to put your money into equity than into rent, to take a tax break on a mortgage than to line a landlord's pockets. But a substantial portion of the American population -- about 30%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau -- still rents its housing.

Some renters don't have a nest egg for a down payment or are reluctant to make a real estate commitment. In general, renters -- especially apartment dwellers -- tend to be less affluent than people who own houses.

But that's certainly not always the case. In some of the most expensive rental markets in the country, wealthy residents are willing to pay thousands of dollars per month for their apartments.

Dennis R. Hughes, a senior vice president at The Corcoran Group, a division of Cendant, in New York City, recently showed a two-bedroom apartment in the Beekman neighborhood that has a library, sterling silver faucets and 24-karat-gold hardware. It is priced at $17,000 -- per month.

"Not extraordinary at all," is how Hughes, whose rental listings currently range from $4,300 to a startling $27,000 per month, describes the rarity of such prices.

One of his clients, a high-powered businessman, offered to prepay two years of rent -- in cash -- for a place that cost $18,000 per month -- a total of more than $432,000. That made the owner think the place was underpriced, and the deal was called off.

"The luxury end of the market is going very nicely, very strong," Hughes says. "I love this market."

The 20 most expensive places to rent

Rank City $/sq. ft*
1 New York $26.04
2 Boston $24.33
3 Honolulu $23.27
4 San Francisco $22.48
5 N. New Jersey $22.35
6 Stamford, Conn. $21.76
7 Nassau-Suffolk, N.Y. $21.05
8 Los Angeles $20.34
9 San Jose, Calif. $20.23
10 Orange County, Calif. $19.54
11 San Diego $19.19
12 Oakland, Calif. $17.66
13 Washington, D.C. $17.54
14 Central New Jersey $16.54
15 Philadelphia $15.40
16 Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif. $14.81
17 Baltimore $13.91
18 Chicago $13.57
19 Miami $13.49
20 Sacramento, Calif. $13.16

Source: National Real Estate Index *Price for ‘Class A’ apartment, top quality buildings maintained well

Pockets of strength in a slow market
"Strong" isn't the first word that many industry insiders would use to describe the nationwide rental market over the past several years. "Since the recession of 2001, the apartment industry has recovered rather slowly," says Mark Obrinsky, chief economist for the National Multi Housing Council, a trade group based in Washington, D.C.

Although the recession officially ended in November of that year, demand for apartments kept dropping for months, even years, Obrinsky says. Vacancy rates only recently came back to the long-term national average of about 5%. And the rentals market hasn't been helped by exceptionally strong real estate sales.

"We had fewer people coming into apartments because of the job market, but the same number of people leaving (to buy homes)," he says.

But the rentals market, like the overall real estate market, varies greatly from region to region and neighborhood to neighborhood. Even in a down apartment market, some cities remained extremely expensive.

To discern the priciest rental markets in the U.S. today, we turned to San Francisco-based real estate research firm Global Real Analytics, which publishes the National Real Estate Index. The company collects rent information for studio through three-bedroom units in apartment complexes around the country and provided its most recent data on the metropolitan areas with the highest annual rents per square foot.

The usual suspects
Not surprisingly, most of the places that made the top 20 are also those with very high sales prices.

New York topped the list, with an average price of more than $26 per square foot each year for high-end apartments, in the second quarter of 2005. That's almost twice the national average of $14.53 per square foot. According to the latest data from local real estate brokerage Citi Habitats, the median rent in Manhattan for a studio apartment is nearly $1,700 per month. Looking for a little more space? Then crank your budget up to about $3,000 per month for an average two-bedroom pad.

Our list was dominated by California metro areas, from San Francisco to Los Angeles to Sacramento, and by long-established cities, such as Boston, Washington, D.C., Miami and even Honolulu.

"There are very few housing units available," says Cheryl Kunimoto, president of Marie Hansen Properties in Honolulu, where the average annual rent per square foot is $23.27 for a high-end spread. "If you have a property that is competitively priced, it's not unusual to have ten or more prospective renters."

What makes these markets so pricey? The reasons vary. Metro areas, such as San Francisco, New York and Boston, not only remain desirable to live in, but they are also known in the industry as "barrier-to-entry" cities, Obrinsky says.

"In other words, even though there's demand for a lot more housing units, it's tough to get them built," he explains.

In Manhattan, land is limited and mostly already occupied. In Boston, until recently rent control discouraged new building. And because there are so many historic areas, it takes a relatively long time to get a new building permit.

And then there's California.

"It isn't the fact of being in California per se, but it is those locations in California," Obrinsky says. "San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland is a bay. There's only so much space that's on and near the bay. Farther inland, it's not cheap housing, but it's less expensive than San Francisco."

Demand, of course, also plays a role in pricing. "There are more companies relocating new employees into the area, and that has had an effect on the rental market," says Edward Bate, a real estate agent with American Marketing Systems, in San Francisco.

Why rent at all?

So if prices are so high in these places, why rent if you can afford to buy? Tenants have some very good reasons, from wanting the money to work for them in other investments to thinking real estate prices are going to decline. Some are frustrated by the pace -- and the even higher prices--in the housing market.

"Something comes on the market, and it's not the asking price, it's the starting price," says Deacon Hoy of Citi Habitats in Manhattan. "Suddenly you have 20 people bidding on it. People come here thinking they are going to buy something for $600,000 or $700,000. They're finding that what they had in mind is going for $1.2 million."

And in many cases, real estate prices have climbed so high that they can have a better standard of living as a renter. "A lot of people have purchased property, but I find that a lot of people end up renting, because they've been priced out of the housing market," says Marie Hansen Properties' Kunimoto. "They can get more for their money if they rent. They can afford to live in a $1 million home, but they can't buy a $1 million home."

Edward Bate observes that in San Francisco, people who have been priced out of the most popular neighborhoods are buying in outlying areas, such as the Sunset and Richmond Districts. That is driving up purchase prices, but rents are still lagging a little behind -- a potential bargain if you're looking to rent.

Then again, when you're talking about the most expensive rental markets in the country, a bargain is defined in relative terms.

Sara Clemence, Forbes.com

--------------Consumer Reports article---------------

High Foreclosure Rates the Dark Side of a Hot Real-Estate Market

By James R. Hood

June 8, 2005
Whether there is a housing "bubble" is becoming as popular a topic of conversation as how much the house down the block sold for. But beneath all the froth is an ominous undertow -- high foreclosure rates in some of the country's hottest markets.

Mortgage Rates
• Mortgage Rates Edge Higher
• Greenspan "Certain" Some Housing Prices Will Dip
• Mortgage Rates at Lowest Point Since February
• High Foreclosure Rates the Dark Side of a Hot Real-Estate Market
• Consumer Complaints/Info
The number of new properties in foreclosure increased nationwide for the second month in a row, with 64,057 in April compared to 62,422 in March, although the rate eased off somewhat in May, possibly indicating the March increase was a temporary spike.

According to data released today by online foreclosure listing service, Foreclosure.com, 22,734 new foreclosed residential properties were listed for sale in the U.S. during May 2005. The number represents a decrease of 17 percent from April 2005. The total number of U.S. residential foreclosure properties available for sale in the U.S. during the month of May was 74,011, a decrease of nearly 4 percent from March.

In Florida, which had the highest rate of foreclosure in the previous two months -- there was one property in foreclosure for every 719 households. Texas is close behind. Both states' foreclosure rates were more than 2.5 times the national average.

"April continues a trend we've seen over the last few months where Texas and Florida have consistently produced an above average number of properties in some stage of foreclosure," said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac.com.

The rising foreclosure rate in Texas, Florida and other prime real estate country may be the early warning signs of an implosion, or they may be just a blip. But whatever the big picture turns out to be, any foreclosure is an unmitigated tragedy for the family that loses its home.

In Texas, homeowners are fighting back. Class action lawsuits against Ameriquest, Option One, Washington Mutual and Long Beach Mortgage allege that their adjustable rate home equity loans written between 1998 and 2003 violate a critical provision of the Texas Constitution.

The Texan homeowners aren't the only ones who are irate about their variable-rate mortgages. Economists are worried too.

Not long ago, the typical homebuyer took out a fixed-rate, 30-year mortgage. Everyone knew upfront what the payments would be and lenders conducted reasonable due diligence to ensure the borrower would be able to pay.

Such staid financing instruments have come to seem as old-fashioned as an oboe. Today as many as two-thirds of home buyers are taking out variable rate mortgages, gambling that interest rates won't rise faster than their ability to pay.

Lenders, meanwhile, are rushing to write paper for nearly anyone who has a pen with which to sign on the dotted line. "No document mortgages" -- which are based largely on the value of the property rather than the borrower's credit worthiness -- have been at record levels. Even headier are the interest-only mortgages that are allowing eager buyers to snap up property they could otherwise not afford.

Of course, interest-only means you never pay off your house. In fact, you don't even make a dent in the original debt and therefore don't build any equity except for that which results from prices that rise faster than the interest rate. While that may be happening now, there's no guarantee it will continue.

"Foreclosure inventory in 2005 has reflected the current volatility and geographic variations of the overall housing market. The tendency for homeowners to enter into adjustable-rate mortgages, no-down payment loans and other low initial cost loan options has resulted in an atmosphere where slight changes in interest rates or economic conditions have a dramatic effect on ownership," said Brad Geisen, president and CEO, Foreclosure.com.
"In areas of the country where the housing market is strong, homeowners facing foreclosure are still able to sell their home to pay their mortgage. But, in areas of the country where the market is flat or slipping, homeowners are left with very few options and foreclosure inventory remains high," he said.

The national median existing-home price for all housing types is expected to rise 8.8 percent in 2005 to $201,500, while the typical new-home price should increase 5.7 percent to $233,600. A rising tide of this sort might continue to lift all boats, but national averages can be misleading and a house that might increase 100 percent in value in a decade in San Francisco might very well show no increase or even a loss in Detroit, St. Louis or other markets that have lost a lot of high-paying jobs.
Home Equity Loans

As troubling as the new styles of financing is the willingness of homeowners who have built up equity in their homes to borrow against that equity, putting their home at risk to pay off credit cards, put their kids through college or go on an extended vacation. Economy.com estimates that Americans borrowed some $705 billion against their homes last year, up from $266 billion in 1999.

Many consumers who've borrowed against their homes were enticed by low interest rates and tax provisions that, in some cases, allowed them to deduct the cost of the loan from their income tax.

What consumers sometimes didn't consider carefully was what would happen if they were unable to pay the loan back. If a consumer falls behind on a car loan, the car may be repossessed. A bad credit card debt can bring annoying collection efforts and damage to one's credit rating. But fall behind on your home equity loan and you can lose your house.

As the foreclosure rate demonstrates, this is not a theoretical problem. But it's not fair to put all the blame on consumers -- lenders have been very aggressive in making loans without pointing out the risk and, often, without adequately vetting the borrower's ability to make the payments.

"No one is doing serious due diligence and underwriting," Diane Thompson, a housing and consumer unit attorney with Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation Inc. in East St. Louis, told the Belleville News-Democrat recently. "There is not documentation to support income or assets. Clients are never offered a choice."

Thompson said this has forced the foreclosure rate in St. Clair County to more than double in the past decade. Most of the loans that have gone bad are what the industry calls "subprime."
Subprime Loans

Subprime loans are those issued at a higher than standard interest rate to those whose credit rating prohibits them from otherwise securing a home loan. With interest rates ranging between 5 percent and 6 percent in recent years, subprime rates can reach as high as 12 percent.

Thompson said she has seen cases where subprime rates topped 20 percent. She blames Wall Street for the problem.

Clients are being pushed into these loans because of the demand for income from Wall Street, she said. Brokerage houses are making a lot of capital available for high-interest loans and are using "push marketing" tactics.

"It's extremely profitable," Thompson said. "Most of my clients were not actively shopping for homes for refinancing. They don't shop around. They don't know of those that are around, and they get steered to disadvantaged loans."
Hot Spots

On the other hand, there are parts of the country -- like Los Angeles -- where foreclosures are not much of a problem. During April, Los Angeles County had the lowest foreclosure rate of the nation's top five metropolitan areas, according to RealtyTrac.com.

Credit the price of housing, which continues to climb, though not at the super-heated pace of a year ago. Houses are so expensive that: a.) low- and middle-income homeowners are rare; and b.) anyone who gets into financial trouble often can quickly sell their home, probably at a profit.

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arts_How Do I Look up-date; Wolfy Tells the Truth about Aids , Balls, and the Forgotten Community [18 Sep 2005|08:45am]

[ mood | optimistic ]

September 13th, 2005

How Do I Look community up-date.

The "Ball" community had the opportunity since July to review the limited How Do I Look DVD edition, distributed by Art From The Heart LLC. (not the official release yet) and I would like to take this opportunity to address some of the issues, so we all have a better understanding of the purpose and mission of HDIL and what it represents for the "Ball" community.

My social and artistic activism for the past 20 years in New York City was my motivation to make the How Do I Look documentary. I experienced the disrespect, payola and racism in the entertainment industry first hand for over 25 years and I felt a strong need to do something about it.

I am looking for ways to make social and artistic change to improve the quality of live for LGBT artistic communities such as the "Ball", "Singers & Songwriters", "Fashion", "Poetry", "Drag" and the "Flagging & Fanning" community.

HDIL was to be positive, highlight on individuals in the "Ball" community with professional artistic accomplishments and to send positive HIV / HOPE messages. It provides a balance to "Paris is Burning" and sets up the foundation for a How Do I Look sequel. One of the goals is to bring up members from the "Ball" community and to provide them with the opportunity to direct the follow up. Andre Mizrahi and Luna Khan made a commitment as directors, Derrick Prada and Hector Xtravaganza also want to be on the committee. This is part of the natural artistic progression towards artistic empowerment for the "Ball" community and it is part of building the artistic infrastructure.

How Do I Look is an arts in education documentary and is different from the traditional entertainment releases. It is a profit share, focusing on benefitting the community as a whole.

Based on the natural progression, Art From The Heart LLC. released HDIL as an artistic empowerment and HIV/AIDS awareness community project.

How Do I Look was created as an arts in education program to become a tool to advance our community artistically. But in order to make it work for us, the leadership of our community needs to understand the importance and the reason why we need artistic programs. Our leadership needs to take on some responsibility to help us build this infrastructure, so we can benefit from it as individuals and as a community.

AIDS -, community based organizations, politicians and businesses are tapping into our talents for entertainment and fundraiser purposes year after year without consideration to give seed money back to the artistic community and nurture our artistic and economic progression.

Presenting the HDIL project to the industry from an educational and cultural point of view is a new concept and how we introduce and communicate our vision and the strategy is very important.

HDIL is reviewed by the public, industry and media as a documentary or film at this time. The community outreach, artistic empowerment, inspirations and financial contributions HDIL has already brought to the "Ball" community and community at large has not been acknowledged by the media and leadership yet, because they are not aware of it and they are not used to looking at a documentary from a community empowerment point of view. In order to educate those people and to make our messages stick, it is necessary to continuously educate ourselves further and touch people’s heart.

HDIL inspired the community across the board and is used by universities and high school students for school projects and studies and we had screenings with lectures at Yale-NYU-Oberlin & Detroit Mercy universities, Harvey Milk High School, AIDS organizations and many LGBT institutions in Chicago, Philly, Detroit and Hartford. Those are major accomplishments and we need to let the public know what HDIL was able to accomplish before its release.

By releasing HDIL with a deeper mission and not just as a documentary, earned us the continues support and the respect from the society at large and the LGBT community.

Our goal is to maximize and capitalize from the accomplishments we received from the community and the media during the work in progress stage. We have been in the NY Times 3 times, BBC TV England, NY Post full page to name a few.

We continue to built community and build a productive and effective artistic infrastructure for future LGBT generations to benefit and we include the society at large in our plans to make it happen for all of us.

Representing the "Ball" community now for 10 years, I focused on the artistic accomplishments and I purposely stayed away from the negativity and the controversial issues.

A) Paris is Burning did plenty, plenty of that and the community to this date is still suffering from all that negativity. I don’t know how much you are aware of it but it is very deep. I know this for a fact, because I am dealing with the public and with businesses on a daily basis now. The first words that comes out of their mouth is, Wolfgang where is all the robbing and stealing, the drugs and prostitution issues in the docu? They ask me, Wolfgang, where is the controversial stuff and all the negativity from the community?

It breaks my heart and upsets me to hear from people that have never been to a ball or don’t even know one ball person in person asking me those kind of questions. Obviously this is the result from the film Paris is Burning and now we have the opportunity to do something about that.

Personally speaking, there is negativity and controversial issues in any community, from Sex in the White House to Fraud at the Stock Exchange, Drugs in Hollywood and Corrupted Politicians, that is no different from the "Ball" community.

My focus and mission is to bring to you artistic empowerment and send HIV / HOPE messages, rather than a controversial documentary that would be to no help to the "Ball" community. We need to know and understand our history, before we can make a difference for the better.

B) I am an artistic and social activist, not an AIDS educator. I do what I do best and that is to bring to you artistic empowerment and build a LGBT artistic infrastructure.

C) the reason why there are no AIDS educators in HDIL may be shocking news and may come to a surprise to many of you.

1) People at GMHC/Latex have singled me out, harassed me and my crew, used me, stole intellectual property from my website to show it at the Latex ball and they did not live up to their financial and administrative promises at the HDIL screening for their interns.

2) a staff member from POCC was part of a group of people who tried to rob me from my film, if you can imagine that and POCC tried to steal intellectual property from James Saunders’ Black Pride NYC.

3) after all the video work I have done for GMAD for 3 years, they couldn’t find it in their heart to give us a letter of support and the financial support they promised, was an empty promise.

4) Minority Task Force on AIDS didn’t live up to their promise to provide me with a DVD copy of the lecture and they pulled me into an internal problem, which resulted of the firing of one staff member.

5) Harlem United scheduled a free ball a week after the Black Pride NYC ball and cut into the financial and economic growth of the ball community.

Now that AIDS organizations are giving all those free balls, ball producers are losing money, because they can not compete with the budgets of the AIDS organizations. AIDS organizations have cut off the economic development and growth for the "Ball" community and they keep the ball community in an artistic ghetto, because the ball community doesn’t have the financial resources.

The issues mentioned above are well documented, and a letter to the editor was published in NYC’s, Gay City News. The documents are available to the public and can be reviewed after making an appointment with me.

With all that manipulating, distortion and dividing going on in our community, because of those AIDS organizations, I refuse to support and work with any of them.

AIDS is big business now, with very few productive links left to the community, except for the few lucky ones that were able to get into their programs. GMHC is run by lawyers and corporate people pushing out the community members one at a time. GMHC has become a corporate institution and as far as I am concerned they should give up their non-profit status, because they have managed to eliminated most of the support from the LGBT community over the years.

I hold AIDS organization responsible for dividing our community and for wasting a lot of tax money on useless programs. Because of the lack of vision, professionalism and community leadership of those AIDS organizations, they create useless and uneffective long term programs only to keep the grant money coming year after year and to keep their jobs to the expense of our community.

After 15 years GMHC/Latex is still organizing 500 active local "Ball" kids, if that many. That speaks for itself and so does the fact that the House of Latex has the highest turn over of members from all the houses. WHY are they spending millions of dollars on staff and balls, when people leave the Latex House angry and disappointed and walk away from the Latex ball with no messages???

It is funny that these same people have an issue with me because I am white European. It is important to talk about that. When it comes to true art, the color of our skin makes no difference and the ignorance of incompetent leadership in our community only gets in the way of getting the job done. They do anything to serve and advance themselves rather than the community and this underlines how they divide our community.

I have experienced many racial issues in and out the ball scene and I would like to share some information about my German background that can benefit you about how we treat African Americans or Black people in general in my country, Germany. If you know somebody that was or is in the military and was stationed in Germany you will fast find out that the Germans treat them with respect and dignity. Please ask your friends or family, who had the opportunity to experience the German culture. You will be positively surprised. Thank you.

Having said that, I think it is important for the leadership of the "Ball" community in New York, to take a good look at those AIDS organizations, what is their track record, what are their true motivations, especially when we hear one horror story after another.

Is it more important to work for those AIDS organizations and pocket some coins for personal gain, speak at their panels or attend their functions and support them for their statistics, so they receive funding from the government year after year and feed into the dividing of our community??? or is it time to stand up to those AIDS organizations in question and push them to become clean and effective.

It is unfortunate that those manipulating AIDS organizations were able to corrupt some of the "Ball" leadership with money and benefits, getting them on their side, and made them a part of this community dividing effort they have so strategically planned. The kids need the coins, so AIDS organizations had an easy game.

I also hope that members from the community and celebrities that come out to support those AIDS organizations will wake up and look at the question: why is the infection rate going up with soooo many AIDS organizations in the city of New York. Are they brain storming about effective community outreach programs or are they getting ready for the next ball ???

I am feeling the importance of sharing this information with the community, because it is important to me to stay transparent on how and with whom we do business with. We need to know what our position and relation ship is within the community. It is totally ok to have the AIDS organizations working against this community project, because the rest of the community is on our side.

Having said that!

Let’s move on to what we need to focus on to make this artistic empowerment program work.

Having 300 DVD’s distributed so far, the responses have been 99% positive. The remaining 1% can be found on the walk4mewednesday shade board with no substance to it.

We just sold the 100th DVD copy after announcing the limited DVD edition 2 month ago. Having PayPal as our payment source, it provides us with excellent accounting records and keeps perfect track of all the website sells. Those documents are available for review to the public and can be accessed with an appointment.

I am also including a synopsis of How Do I Look with this email and I request your comments and suggestions, because the film synopsis is going to be send out to film festivals, the media and other businesses. It is important that the ball community feels comfortable with the content of the synopsis, because we have to live with it for the rest of our lives just like Paris is Burning.

HDIL was submitted to the festivals in Berlin & Munich in Germany, London England, Sydney Australia, Toronto Canada for the world premier, the Slamdance, Sundance, NewFest, TriBeca, the Gay Games in Chicago and James Saunders took it to Brazil.

We should be able to secure a world premiere festival overseas this year or in the beginning of 2006, followed by several US and Canada festivals with the goal to break through in one way or another.

Because we didn’t receive grants or funding for this project, it is important for you to understand the reason why the limited edition of the How Do I Look DVD was released and why we need to raise the much needed funds to complete this project before we can release the official DVD and enter the film festivals with the finished product.

For your information, HDIL was rejected 3 times by the NY State council for the arts, Experimental Television, Frame by Frame and the Andy Warhol foundation refused to even look at our proposal. We learned that to receive grants is not about how artistic a community is or how hard a community is hit by AIDS, it is about who you know on those grant giving panels. I also learned that I had to package our community to fit their guidelines, rather than making the guidelines fit the needs of the community.

The production and duplication of the limited 1.000 HDIL - DVD’s was a $3.000 expense. We made this money back already from the 100 DVD’s we sold on our website www.HowDoILooknyc.org and at Kim’s video store on 89 Christopher Street in NYC. The money we raise from here on goes towards the following:

$3.000 for legal fees for the club mix release and cd soundtrack.

$2.000 to mix the sound for the theater release

$10.000 to transfer from DV tape to 35 mm film.

$1.000 to block out audience

$2.000 for club mix production and 1.000 duplications

$2.000 for the cd soundtrack production and 1.000 duplication

We need to sell 600 more DVD’s to keep the momentum going and from the response we are receiving, I feel confident to reach that goal. The DVD costs $30 plus $5 for shipping on our website. It is $30 at Kim’s video store and $20 if you see me in person.

If you know of a mom and pap video store in your city that sells gay video’s please get in touch with me so we can contact them to sell How Do I Look at their store. Please spread the word to people to buy the How Do I Look DVD, it makes a great gift.

For the New York City HDIL club mix screenings for October, November and December, I am looking for people that would like to produce an event, performers and volunteers. This is an equal House opportunity to cross promote the documentary in the clubs.

We are looking at the following NYC locations for the club mix screenings: Hangar oct 20, Escuelita oct 23, Spalsh oct 25, 208 Center dance nov 12, Roxy-Monster and Atlantis tba, more clubs will be added.

Hopefully I was able to explain myself and the How Do I Look project to you and if you have any questions and feedback for me feel free to contact me. Your responses are always welcomed and appreciated.

--->How Do I Look synopsis
The "How Do I Look" documentary was created by artistic and social activist Wolfgang Busch for Art From The Heart LLC. over a period of 10 years, to empower the "Ball" community artistically & financially and to build a national artistic infrastructure to further the careers of LGBT artists.

How Do I Look is a LGBT artistic empowerment, HIV/AIDS awareness community project and an arts in education program, focusing on the members of the national "Ball" community that took their talents outside the "Ball" scene and worked with superstars such as: Queen Latifah, Madonna, India and fashion designer Thierry Mugler to name a few.

How Do I Look captured the "Ball" communities talents, the assets of this very creative and trend setting community and takes you inside of this over 30 year old Harlem tradition. It highlights on their house system and family values, the fierce fashion, dance and runway competition, the many diverse legends and icons life styles, the passing of fashion traditions, the dance vogue old way vs. new way, transgender health issues & education, sends HOPE messages on the battle with HIV/AIDS, their every day struggles and how they build their confidence, self esteem and status through the arts and how they use the natural artistic progression, to improve the quality of life.

The outstanding fashion, runway and voguing visuals in this documentary are the result of this improvisational performance art form and the natural artistic progression. It was captured by German/American film maker Wolfgang Busch, while showcasing their talents in different categories on the runway, battling for that perfect 10 from the judges for ballroom status, recognition, cash and trophies, for legendary status and be voted into the Ballroom Hall of Fame one day.

Based on their gender, every house member can participate and has the opportunity to bring their Fantasy to Reality on the runway, living that superstar moment they can not experience anywhere else.

Lifetime Achiever and member of the Ballroom Hall of Fame Kevin Omni and mother of the year 2004 Luna Khan are Assistant Directors. Marcel Christian, Alvernian Prestige, Mann Prodigy, Ricky Revlon, Derryck Labeija, CoolAid and Jack Mizrahi give us a brief Ballroom history.

Legendary Icon Pepper Labeija, the founder of the Harlem "Ball" scene in the early seventies, is being honored by the community for his leadership and for his endless contributions.

HDIL captures the passing of three generations of ball tradition and the unique talents by futuristic bazaar fashion designers Ross Infiniti and RR Chanel, along with the voguing talents of Willi Ninja, Jose Xtravaganza, Mecca, Muhammad Omni and Andre Mizrahi, who keep the voguing history and the legacy alive for future generations.

The powerful transgender community is represented by Octavia St. Laurent, Carmen Xtravaganza, Tracy Africa, Alyssa St. Clair and Jazmine Givenchy Blahnik. They speak about their diverse life styles such as graduating from Syracuse university, modeling and performance careers and the stages of transformation of becoming a transgender.

Luna Luis Ortiz, Mother of the House of Khan leaves the children with a message of HOPE by sharing his story about how he became infected with the HIV virus during his first sexual experience at the age of 14; and how he continues to live a full life using his artistic photography at the age of 33. Harmonica Sunbeam speaks of the importance of protecting yourself against HIV at all times and encourages the up-coming ball walkers to go out there and just do it.

Jaimee Balenciaga, voted mother of the year for 7 years in a row, is a lesbian talking about how she educates her house children and prepares them for the competition on and off the runway.

Poems are by Emanuel Xavier called "Legends" and by Octavia St. Laurent the "Chosen One".

The music is provided by the local community, Tori Fixx from Chicago, DJ PUNCH from Atlanta, The How Do I Look Project, Harmonica Sunbeam, Jade, Shane, Robson Milian, Dutchboy, Octavia St. Laurent and Willie Villegas from New York.

There are so many exciting performances and magical moments to view in How Do I Look, which attracted many celebrities during the work in progress such as Melba Moore, Malik Yoba, Mo’Nique and Boy George. Multiple #1 Billboard dance artist Kevin Aviance, gossip columnist Michael Musto and Patricia Field from Sex in the City can be heard and seen in How Do I Look.

How Do I Look is already used by students in high schools and universities for student studies and we had screenings with lectures at Yale-NYU-Detroit Mercy and Oberlin college, the Harvey Milk High School, the Door youth organization and Latino Commission on AIDS and at LGBT institutions such as the LGBT community Center in NYC & Philadelphia, OutProfessionals, StoneWall Democratic Club, Black Pride NYC and the HIV Forum.

We received letters of support from Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Field, Senator David Patterson, NY State Senator Thomas K. Duane and the White House.

How Do I Look has been an inspiration and education to many peoples’ lives before its release and the feedback from the media such as the New York Times, NY Post, Power 105.1 FM in NY and BBC TV in London has been very positive and encouraging.

For more information please go to our website at www.HowDoILooknyc.org

It is very important that the ball community feels comfortable with the content of the synopsis and if you have any questions and feedback for me feel free to contact me. Your responses are always welcomed and appreciated.

Artistically and respectfully yours,

Wolfgang Busch


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RUNews_Pat Robertson Goes Overboard...Again! [17 Sep 2005|10:02am]

[ mood | relaxed ]

The pieces here speak for themselves [with a bit of guidance along the way].
Peaceness and Sledgehammers,
Darryl Hell

---> Check out this "investigative" report on this website
God's Wrath

Claim: Pat Robertson said that Hurricane Katrina was caused by God's anger over the selection of lesbian comedienne Ellen Degeneres to host the upcoming Emmy Awards.

Status: False.

Origins: Good satire neatly straddles the divide between the believable and the incredible, and the Dateline Hollywood article quoted above achieved that balance so well that many readers mistook it for a straight news article. This acceptance was due in large part to U.S. evangelist Pat Robertson's history of making rather outrageous public statements on his 700 Club television program, including his recent call for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo

The satirical premise expressed in the original piece, that Mr. Robertson might make a connection between homosexuality and hurricanes, doesn't even require stretching the truth. During a 6 August 1998 broadcast of The 700 Club, Mr. Robertson addressed comments at participants of the Orlando, Florida, Gay Pride Festival, stating: "I would warn Orlando that you're right in the way of some serious hurricanes, and I don't think I'd be waving those flags in God's face if I were you."

Those not quite convinced that the Dateline Hollywood article really was intended as satire are invited to read that web publication's explanation of their history, starting with their founding in 360 BC as Gladiators Weekly.
( http://www.snopes.com/politics/katrina/robertson.asp )

--->Check out some other quotes from him;

---> In case you didn't see the original story...it's convincing and ironically funny;

Lesbian is New Orleans native

Hollywood – Pat Robertson on Sunday said that Hurricane Katrina was God’s way of expressing its anger at the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for its selection of Ellen Degeneres to host this year’s Emmy Awards. “By choosing an avowed lesbian for this national event, these Hollywood elites have clearly invited God’s wrath,” Robertson said on “The 700 Club” on Sunday. “Is it any surprise that the Almighty chose to strike at Miss Degeneres’ hometown?”

Robertson also noted that the last time Degeneres hosted the Emmys, in 2001, the September 11 terrorism attacks took place shortly before the ceremony.

“This is the second time in a row that God has invoked a disaster shortly before lesbian Ellen Degeneres hosted the Emmy Awards,” Robertson explained to his approximately one million viewers. “America is waiting for her to apologize for the death and destruction that her sexual deviance has brought onto this great nation.”

Robertson added that other tragedies of the past several years can be linked to Degeneres’ growing national prominence. September, 2003, for example, is both the month that her talk show debuted and when insurgents first gained a foothold in Iraq following the successful March invasion. “Now we know why things took a turn for the worse,” he explained.

In order to avoid further tragedy, Robertson called not only for the Television Academy to find a new heterosexual host, but to bar all homosexuals and bisexuals from taking part in the ceremony.

He said employees at the Christian Broadcasting Network had put together a list of 283 nominees, presenters, and invited guests at the Emmys known to be of sexually deviant persuasions.

“God already allows one awards show to promote the homosexual agenda,” Robertson declared. “But clearly He will not tolerate such sinful behavior to spread beyond the Tonys.”

original story;

--->The wrap-up;
"Just like what Nazi Germany did to the Jews, so liberal America is now doing to the evangelical Christians. It's no different. It is the same thing. It is happening all over again. It is the Democratic Congress, the liberal-based media and the homosexuals who want to destroy the Christians. Wholesale abuse and discrimination and the worst bigotry directed toward any group in America today. More terrible than anything suffered by any minority in history."--Pat Robertson, 1993 interview with Molly Ivins

More quotes; http://www.curevents.com/vb/archive/index.php/t-18793.html

[dh] Now correct me please if I'm mistaken, but he seems to be comparing "liberal america" to Nazis...not to mention his minimization of the history of many of the peoples of the US.

"It is interesting, that termites don't build things, and the great builders of our nation almost to a man have been Christians, because Christians have the desire to build something. He is motivated by love of man and God, so he builds. The people who have come into (our) institutions (today) are primarily termites. They are into destroying institutions that have been built by Christians, whether it is universities, governments, our own traditions, that we have.... The termites are in charge now, and that is not the way it ought to be, and the time has arrived for a godly fumigation."--Pat Robertson, New York Magazine, August 18, 1986

"...the time has arrived for a godly fumigation."

[dh]If this had been said by a Muslim, people everywhere would be demanding that the person and the statements be repudiated. So at the end of the day, it matters not what he's said now. The question should be; why has he been given a free pass to say such things for so long?

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Atta papers detroyed by Pentagon [16 Sep 2005|07:10pm]

Weldon: Atta Papers Destroyed on Orders
Congressman Says Pentagon Employee Was Ordered to Destroy Data Identifying Atta As a Terrorist

The Associated Press
Sep. 16, 2005 - A Pentagon employee was ordered to destroy documents that identified Mohamed Atta as a terrorist two years before the 2001 attacks, a congressman said Thursday.

The employee is prepared to testify next week before the Senate Judiciary Committee and was expected to identify the person who ordered him to destroy the large volume of documents, said Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa.

Weldon declined to identify the employee, citing confidentiality matters. Weldon described the documents as "2.5 terabytes" as much as one-fourth of all the printed materials in the Library of Congress, he added.

A Senate Judiciary Committee aide said the witnesses for Wednesday hearing had not been finalized and could not confirm Weldon's comments.

Army Maj. Paul Swiergosz, a Pentagon spokesman, said officials have been "fact-finding in earnest for quite some time."

"We've interviewed 80 people involved with Able Danger, combed through hundreds of thousands of documents and millions of e-mails and have still found no documentation of Mohamed Atta," Swiergosz said.

He added that certain data had to be destroyed in accordance with existing regulations regarding "intelligence data on U.S. persons."

Weldon has said that Atta, the mastermind of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and three other hijackers were identified in 1999 by a classified military intelligence unit known as "Able Danger," which determined they could be members of an al-Qaida cell.

On Wednesday, former members of the Sept. 11 commission dismissed the "Able Danger" assertions. One commissioner, ex-Sen. Slade Gorton, R-Wash., said, "Bluntly, it just didn't happen and that's the conclusion of all 10 of us."

Weldon responded angrily to Gorton's assertions.

"It's absolutely unbelievable that a commission would say this program just didn't exist," Weldon said Thursday.

Pentagon officials said this month they had found three more people who recall an intelligence chart identifying Atta as a terrorist prior to the Sept. 11 attacks.

Two military officers, Army Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer and Navy Capt. Scott Phillpott, have come forward to support Weldon's claims.
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RUNews_Crude Manipulation; Are We being Fleeced by Slimy Oil...Again [15 Sep 2005|08:58am]

Crude Manipulation
In Katrina's wake, the supposed oil shortage and suspicious gas price hikes
by James Ridgeway
September 13th, 2005 11:25 AM
Supposedly gas prices are going through the roof because of an oil shortage. The hurricane made things worse. But it looks increasingly as though this is an out-and-out scam. The industry is awash with crude oil. However, it has reduced refinery output because selling refined products has been a money loser. Now, reports are suggesting the big companies worked together to slow refining capacity, and even tried to take independent refiners off the market, in their gambit to run up prices.

The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, a California consumer group dealing with utility and energy issues, has released a series of internal oil company memos that strongly suggest the industry conspired to withhold refined products to drive the price up. In the past the industry often blamed reduced refining on environmental regs that forced the companies to take refineries out of production. Memos from Mobil, Chevron, and Texaco in the 1990s (the firms subsequently merged) demonstrate the different ways the companies closed down refining capacity and drove independents out of the market. And according to the foundation, they were helped along by the American Petroleum Institute, the industry trade group. In one 1996 memo, Mobil suggested preventing a smaller refinery from flooding the market by "buying all their avails and marketing it ourselves." An internal Texaco memo indicated that the industry thought "the most critical factor facing the refining industry on the West Coast is the surplus of refining capacity, and the surplus gasoline production capacity. (The same situation exists for the entire U.S. refining industry.) Supply significantly exceeds demand year-round. This results in very poor refinery margins and very poor refinery financial results. Significant events need to occur to assist in reducing supplies and/or increasing the demand for gasoline. One example of a significant event would be the elimination of mandates for oxygenate addition to gasoline. Given a choice, oxygenate usage would go down, and gasoline supplies would go down accordingly. (Much effort is being exerted to see this happen in the Pacific Northwest.)"

The government currently is pushing refiners to increase production wherever possible because of the hurricane, even at risk of disregarding pollution standards, according to a report last week in the Financial Times. In addition, a refiner in Houston tells the Financial Times, the government is telling refiners to forget about doing maintenance: "Run the refinery as high as you can and avoid all non-priority maintenance in the next four to six weeks."
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arts_9/11: How Do You Know What You Know? Exhibit ends Tonight [15 Sep 2005|08:53am]

[ mood | peaceful ]

9/11: How Do You Know What You Know?
an informational artivist media window installation
created by Darryl Hell/s6k Entertainment
presented by chashama Arts, NYC chashama.org

installation curators 7734 & Luis Colon
open for viewing
9/11/05 8:45am - 9:11pm 9/12 thru 9/15 11am - 6pm
266 W37th St. (btwn 7th & 8th aves.) @ 8th Ave., New York City

---------> ENDS ON THURSDAY NIGHT AT 9:11pm <---------
attended Thurs by 7734 and Luis Colon 5:30pm to 9:11pm
complimentary wine Thurs 7pm to closing

It's been 4 years since the day and we are no closer to having the
myriad of questions from republicans, democrats, conservatives,
liberals, government officials, scientists, and more answered.

For instance:
What did the NYC Firefighters mean when they talked about numerous
"secondary explosions" before the buildings fell? Why is the US
Government refusing to release the complete security camera tape of
the Pentagon strike? Why was Osama Bin Laden writing with his right
hand in his "confession video" when the FBI profile states that he's
left handed?

Once you've critically and clinically gone over the verifiable
documentation, without bias of political affiliation, you'll certainly
wonder why you've read so many articles and seen so many news stories,
and yet probably had no knowledge of the many questions verifiable
documentation of the events present.

This installation is dedicated to the 24,495 to 27,705 verifiably dead
Iraqi civilians, nearly 2000 dead US soldiers, many dead journalists,
2,996 dead US civilians, 15,000 to 42,500 wounded US soldiers,
hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqi soldiers, millions of injured
Iraqi civilians, approximately 10,424,535 traumatized Iraqi children,
and everyone that is connected to them...blood family and human

Loose Change ...the most provocative 9-11 documentary on the market
today. Evidence is derived from news footage, scientific testimony,
and most important, Americans who suffered through that tragic day. It
is the duty of every American to view this film.

Operation Northwoods was a series of strategic plans drawn up in the
early 1960's during the Kennedy administration by the Defense
Department and Joint Chiefs of Staff to create an international
incident. The stated goal was to invade Cuba after world opinion was
swayed by a number of tragic incidents, real and perceived, which
would be caused by the US government, but made to look as if it were
the result of aggression by the USSR and Cuba. For years people fought
using Freedom of Information Act requests to have it be available to
all of us.

Also features data from the Real University News Archive. www.s6k.com

----->adjunct exhibition links<-----
Loose Change [documentary] free video link
(scroll down to the Loose Change download links.)

Operation Northwoods

9/11 Hijackers; Identities of four [or more] of the
19 accused suicide pilots are now in doubt

Family Steering Committe for the 9/11 Independent Commission

Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney Questions Donald Rumsfeld about 9/11

s6k.com [artivism with no bounds] email us: contact@s6k.com
We Pay Attention to the People who Pay Attention.

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an s6k Blipvert: an 1800 Colonial Williamsburg Experience [13 Sep 2005|12:15am]

[ mood | calm ]

There's a new [to me] commercial advertising tourism in Colonial
Williamsburg, PA, US. The version I saw featured a young, White child
imagining himself in the image of the 1800's he's been programmed
with. He envisioned chopping wood, being a valiant pilgram, log cabins
and such.

Now I blinked for a quick minute and thought; I know that they don't
just means pasific peeple but everebody. So I's started thinking my
own 1800's ekspereece. I's thinkin bout choppin' wood, pikin cottin,
finin my chans to run, and my wife beeng raped or sold, or both, by
"massa." Thinkin Id be beetin jus fo reedin ans ritin. Thinkin of the
cracker (from the original use of the word; cracker; the person who is
in charge of whipping.) i.e. Go call the cracker to whip this unruly
nigger. (from the original use of the word; nigger; anything with dark
skin.) I's thinkin bout the teers I coodent cry. There aint nothin
good bout the 1800's to me.

The 1800 was a time when relations between Black people was tenuous
and fragmented. Blacks were highly illiterate, in comparison to the
larger society. Most areas that were predominantly Black were
blighted, i.e. slave quarters.

200 years later, we still have problems relating to each other. We are
still plagued with an undereducated state of being, in comparison to
the larger society. And...still most areas that are predominantly
Black are blighted, i.e. projects (urban), slums (suburban & rural).

Now that I've had my flashback, I'd have to say that their little
theme dreem (sorry, forgot where I was. LOL) dream isn't for me.

Peaceness and Sledgehammers,
Darryl Hell

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RUNews_Tim Wise Breaks his Paralyzed State to Speak on Katrina [06 Sep 2005|08:34pm]

Tim Wise, who is a brilliant white anti-racism activist, and lived in
New Orleans 1986-1996, just sent us [The Posse Foundation] this...We will
continue to forward his commentaries on the unpreventable hurricane,
and its preventable aftermath, over the coming days...

------ Forwarded Message

From: Tim Wise <timjwise@msn.com>
Date: Fri, 02 Sep 2005 17:03:23 -0500
Subject: article on katrina

I have been paralyzed this last few days, unable to write anything.

That changed today.

This is the first of several things I'm going to be getting off my chest.
Hope you all find them useful, or confirming, or cathartic, or
whatever. If not, just delete them and move on I guess.

A God With Whom I am Not Familiar
By Tim Wise

This is an open letter to the man sitting behind me at La Paz today,
in Nashville, at lunchtime, with the Brooks Brothers shirt:

You don't know me. But I know you.

I watched you as you held hands with your tablemates at the restaurant
where we both ate this afternoon. I listened as you prayed, and
thanked God for the food you were about to eat, and for your own
safety, several hundred miles away from the unfolding catastrophe in
New Orleans.

You blessed your chimichanga in the name of Jesus Christ, and then
proceeded to spend the better part of your meal--and mine, since I was
too near your table to avoid hearing every word--morally scolding the
people of that devastated city, heaping scorn on them for not heeding
the warnings to leave before disaster struck. Then you attacked
them--all of them, without distinction it seemed--for the behavior of
a relative handful: those who have looted items like guns, or big
screen TVs.

I heard you ask, amid the din of your colleagues "Amens," why it was
that instead of pitching in to help their fellow Americans, the people
of New Orleans instead--again, all of them in your mind--chose to
steal and shoot at relief helicopters.

I watched you wipe salsa from the corners of your mouth, as you nodded
agreement to the statement of one of your friends, sitting to your
right, her hair neatly coiffed, her makeup flawless, her jewelry
sparkling. When you asked, rhetorically, why it was that people were
so much more decent amid the tragedy of 9-11, as compared to the
aftermath of Katrina, she had offered her response, but only after
apologizing for what she admitted was going to sound harsh.

"Well," Buffy explained. "It's probably because in New Orleans, it
seems to be mostly poor people, and you know, they just don't have the
same regard."

She then added that police should shoot the looters, and should have
done so from the beginning, so as to send a message to the rest that
theft would not be tolerated. You, who had just thanked Jesus for your
chips and guacamole, said you agreed. They should be shot. Praise the

Your God is one with whom I am not familiar.

Two thoughts.

First, it is a very fortunate thing for you, and likely for me, that
my two young children were with me as I sat there, choking back fish
tacos and my own seething rage, listening to you pontificate about
shit you know nothing about.

Have you ever even been to New Orleans?

And no, by that I don't mean the New Orleans of your company's sales
conference. I don't mean Emeril's New Orleans, or the New Orleans of
Uptown Mardi Gras parties.

I mean the New Orleans that is buried as if it were Atlantis, in
places like the lower 9th ward: 98 percent black, 40 percent poor,
where bodies are floating down the street, flowing with the water as
it seeks its own level.

Have you met the people from that New Orleans? The New Orleans that is
dying as I write this, and as you order another sweet tea?

I didn't think so.

Your God--the one to whom you prayed today, and likely do before every
meal, because this gesture proves what a good Christian you are--is
one with whom I am not familiar.

Your God is one who you sincerely believe gives a flying fuck about
your lunch. Your God is one who you seem to believe watches over you
and blesses you, and brings good tidings your way, while
simultaneously letting thousands of people watch their homes be
destroyed, and perhaps ten thousand or more die, many of them in the
streets for lack of water or food.

Did you ever stop to think just what a rancid asshole such a God would
have to be, such that he would take care of the likes of you, while
letting babies die in their mother's arms, and old people in
wheelchairs, at the foot of Canal Street?

Your God is one with whom I am not familiar.

But no, it isn't God who's the asshole here, Skip (or Brad, or
Braxton, or whatever your name is).

God doesn't feed you, and it isn't God that kept me from turning
around and beating your lily white privileged ass today either.

God has nothing to do with it.

God doesn't care who wins the Super Bowl.

God doesn't help anyone win an Academy Award.

God didn't get you your last raise, or your SUV.

And if God is even half as tired as I am of having to listen to
self-righteous bastards like you blame the victims of this nightmare
for their fate, then you had best eat slowly from this point forward.

Why didn't they evacuate like they were told?

Are you serious?

There are 100,000 people in that city without cars.

Folks who are too poor to own their own vehicle, and who rely on
public transportation every day. I know this might shock you. They
don't have a Hummer2, or whatever gas-guzzling piece of crap you
either already own or probably are saving up for.

And no, they didn't just choose not to own a car because the buses are
so gosh-darned efficient and great, as Rush Limbaugh implied
yesterday, and as you likely heard, since you're the kind of person
who hangs on the every word of such bloviating hacks as these.

Why did they loot?

Are you serious?

People are dying, in the streets, on live television. Fathers and
mothers are watching their baby's eyes bulge in their skulls from
dehydration, and you are begrudging them some Goddamned candy bars,
diapers and water?

If anything the poor of New Orleans have exercised restraint.

Maybe you didn't know it, but the people of that city with whom you
likely identify--the wealthy white folks of Uptown--were barely
touched by this storm. Yeah, I guess God was watching over them:
protecting them, and rewarding them for their faith and superior
morality. If the folks downtown who are waiting desperately for their
government to send help--a government whose resources have been
stretched thin by a war that I'm sure you support, because you love
freedom and democracy--were half as crazed as you think, they'd march
down St. Charles Avenue right now and burn every mansion in sight.
That they aren't doing so suggests a decency and compassion for their
fellow man and woman that sadly people like you lack.

Can you even imagine what you would do in their place?

Can you imagine what would happen if it were well-off white folks
stranded like this without buses to get them out, without nourishment,
without hope?

Putting aside the absurdity of the imagery--after all, such folks
always have the means to seek safety, or the money to rebuild, or the
political significance to ensure a much speedier response for their
concerns--can you just imagine?

Can you imagine what would happen if the pampered, overfed corporate
class, which complains about taxes taking a third of their bloated
incomes, had to sit in the hot sun for four, going on five days?
Without a Margarita or hotel swimming pool to comfort them I mean?

Oh, and please, I know. I'm stereotyping you.

Imagine that. I've assumed, based only on your words, what kind of
person you are, even though I suppose I could be wrong. How does that
feel Biff? Hurt your feelings?

So sorry. But hey, at least my stereotypes of you aren't deadly. They
won't effect your life one bit, unlike the ones you carry around with
you and display within earshot of people like me, supposing that no
one could possibly disagree.

But I'm not wrong am I Chip? I know you. I see people like you all the
time, in airports, in business suits, on their lunch breaks. People
who will take advantage of any opportunity to ratify and reify their
pre-existing prejudices towards the poor, towards black folks.

You see the same three video loops of the same dozen or so looters on
Fox News and you conclude that poor black people are crazy, immoral,

You, or others quite a bit like you, are the ones posting messages on
chat room boards, calling looters sub-human "vermin," "scum," or
"cockroaches." I heard you use the word "animals" three times today:
you and that woman across from you--what was her name? Skyler? What
was it you said as you scooped the last bite of black beans and rice
into your eager mouth? Like zoo animals? Yes, I think that was it.

Well Chuck, it's a free country, and so you certainly have the right I
suppose to continue lecturing the poor, in between checking your
Blackberry and dropping the kids off at soccer practice. If you want
to believe that the poor of New Orleans are immoral and greedy, and
unworthy of support at a time like this--or somehow more in need of
your scolding than whatever donation you might make to a relief
fund--so be it.

But let's leave God out of it, shall we? All of it.

Your God is one with whom I am not familiar, and I'd prefer to keep it that way.

Tim Wise is the author of White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a
Privileged Son

Victoria Cunningham - Trainer
The Posse Foundation
1612 K Street, NW
Suite 1002
Washington, D.C. 20009
phone: 202.293.3800 fax: 202.293.4300
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