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November 2012, Week 3

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Tidbits & Reader Response
November 16, 2012

 - Hit 'em again, harder! (Clancy Sigal)
 - Re: Left's Love-Hate Relationship With Zionism (Laurel
     MacDowell)
 - Re: How the Left Can Become a True Political Force to Be
     Reckoned With (Steve Lane, Ellen Cantarow)
 - Re: In Spielberg's "Lincoln," Passive Black Characters
     (Carlos Munoz)
 - Film Review - No Justice, No Peace: The Must-See 
     Documentary 

==========

 - Hit 'em again, harder!

The excerpt below is from today's Los Angeles Times headed
WALL ST., OBAMA HEALING RIFT.

To remind you: Jamie Dimon is the genius CEO who lost J.P.
Morgan billions in mortgage backed securities that helped
make our current "homes under water" crisis.  He loudly
hates regulation of any kind.  He is a Democrat who Obama
can't praise enough.    He sits on the Board of Governors of
NY Fed, which is supposed to regulate out of control
bankers.  Conflict of interest is unknown in this world.
Lloyd Blankfein, of Goldman Sachs should be in prison with
Bernie Madoff for lying to his clients and to Congress.  He
bet against the subprime mortgage market, betraying his own
clients and countless home owners.  He is the poster boy for
predator.

So let's add two more words to the "George Orwell Index"
aside from "bi partisan".  Soon to come: "spending cuts" and
"entitlement reform".  That's us, folks.

Clancy Sigal

    By Andrew Tangel and Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles
    Times

    November 14, 2012, 6:59 p.m.

    NEW YORK - There are growing signs that Wall Street
    is trying to mend its rocky relationship with a
    president who castigated them as "fat cats" and
    ushered through tough new regulations after the
    financial crisis.

    JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Jamie Dimon has
    recently been in contact with the White House and
    congressional leaders, while Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd
    Blankfein publicly called for a new "spirit of
    compromise and reconciliation." CEOs of 12 major
    American companies also held a closed-door meeting
    with President Obama on Wednesday.

==========

 - Re: Left's Love-Hate Relationship With Zionism

Michels article is very interesting. The democratic left
which supported the creation of Israel has become
disappointed with Israel because it has moved to the right,
has become more influenced by clerical than secular Jews,
and it has treated the Palestinians very badly in the
process. In its early years, even though none of the Arab
states recognized Israel, it nevertheless should have done
more on the issue of refugees. As a country prospering in
the region it should have done as much as possible to spread
some of its advances to neighbouring countries. They opposed
Israel, but you nevertheless improve relations with generous
gestures. Instead, and I don't blame Israel as it had
citizens who experienced the Holocaust, it focused on
security alone and developed the notion of responding to all
issues with toughness. In the long run, that approach has
not worked. The current government of Israel is by any
standards deplorable, aggressive, racist, imperialistic
about territory, and a disgrace. And it is supported
unthinkingly by most Jews in the West, so the situation does
not get discussed very much. There is a small peace movement
in Israel that seeks a two state solution, genuine peace
talks, and other actions like handing back territories
illegally taken, taking down the wall, all kinds of Israeli-
Palestinian joint programs etc.

Like these peace supporters, I support the existence of
Israel. But I am very disappointed that North American Jews
are so supportive of the current regime there. And I cannot
stand Netanyahu who is a war monger, is not interested in
real peace negotiations, continues to build illegal
settlements, and who even tried to intervene in the American
election so he could start a war with Iran. Fortunately
Obama was too smart for him. Now he is bombing Gaza and
holding press conferences so he can make arrogant speeches.
This is only going to unite the Arabs in support of the
Palestinians - a very risky situation for Israel. The
government needs to realize that with the Arab Spring things
are changing in the region and it needs to make alliances
not war.To do that it needs another government.

Laurel MacDowell

==========

 - Re: How the Left Can Become a True Political Force to Be
Reckoned With

Bill Fletcher and  Carl Davidson present a good but limited
analysis of why the Republicans were trounced in the recent
election. I say limited because they omitted a brief,
simple,  self-evident explanation of that result.

It's what God wanted.

Steve Lane

===

"The Left" is not the vehicle for organizing the US anymore.
Leadership must come from the changed population. Not to
"interrogate" that phrase, "the Left," is the article's
major flaw.

I do not know how to respond save in an email.

BTW:  I count myself, at 72, as still being on "the Left."

Ellen Cantarow

==========

 - Re: In Spielberg's "Lincoln," Passive Black Characters

Worse yet he ignored the fact that Lincoln was a white
supremacist! During his presidential debates with Douglas he
made that clear. Here's a direct quote:

"I am not, nor have ever been in favor of bringing about in
any way the social and political equality of the white and
black races; I am not nor have ever been in favor of make
voters or jurors of Negroes...And in as much as they cannot
so live, while they do remain together, there must be the
position of superior and inferior, and as much as any other
man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to
the white race."

So why did he wind up "emancipating" blacks?  The answer is
that he needed more soldiers for his northern army to win
the civil war.

Peace,

Carlos Munoz

==========

Film Review

No Justice, No Peace: The Must-See Documentary of
American Film Institute Fest.

By Ed Rampell
Hollywood Progressive
November 3, 2012

http://hollywoodprogressive.com/central-park-five/

     Central Park 2 No Justice, No Peace: The Must
     See Documentary of AFI Fest. Trailer:
     http://tinyurl.com/be3phdq

In the nonfiction films of Ken Burns - arguably the
greatest American television documentarian of all
time - race is a recurring theme, from The Civil War
to The Central Park Five. The latter is the latest and
perhaps most contemporary of the history obsessed
filmmaker, and it is all about race and racism.

As a "native" New Yorker, of course I was aware of
1989's Central Park Jogger case, wherein five Black
and Latino teens were charged with being part of a
"wolf pack" that went on a "wilding" rampage - as
the racist media put it - brutally assaulting and
gang raping a white woman jogging in the Park. The
quintet of Harlem teenagers were convicted and
served prison time.

Although I moved from New York decades ago, I
visited from time to time and stayed in touch with
City residents, but somehow I never knew about
what eventually happened regarding this case and
to the five Harlemites, who are now grown men.

Leave it to Ken Burns, America's TV documentarian
par excellence, to bring us up to date with the
startling revelations regarding what really happened
and what the Central Park Five are currently up to.
It's genuinely astonishing and horrifying; your plot
spoiler adverse critic won't ruin the surprises for
you. But suffice it to say, the outcome is one of the
worst examples of the press burying, instead of
reporting, the news. While the front page stories
about rape and mayhem were front page news,
subsequent events are submerged on page 12 - if
at all.

Leave it to Burns and his co-creators, David
McMahon and Sarah Burns, to exhume this riveting
story with a riveting feature length documentary
that will have viewers sitting on the edges of their
seats, filled with outrage and unable to take their
reddened eyes off of the screen. After watching this
must see movie, audiences may join the young Rev.
Al Sharpton in chanting: "No justice, no peace!"
Hopefully, Burns' doc will help render both justice
and peace for the Central Park Five who are, in that
ultimate Alfred Hitchcock tradition, literally "the
wrong men."

If you see only one film at AFI Fest this year, don't
miss Burns' bravura The Central Park Five!

The Central Park Five is scheduled to be theatrically
released in late November.

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