May 2012, Week 1


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Mon, 7 May 2012 22:09:39 -0400
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Tidbits and Announcements - May 7, 2012

* Responding to the article by Mr Natapoff on 5-7-2012
* Ideology and Electricity: The Soviet Experience in
  Afghanistan (Daniel Morgan, David McReynolds)
* Amid Europe's Crisis - A Surge from the Left (Jim Price)
* Re: Readers Write: May 4, Pete Seeger's Birthday (Leonard
* How did Quebec Students Mobilize Hundreds of Thousands for
* May 9th Film on Cuba - Will the Real Terrorists Please
  Stand Up? - New York - Brecht Forum)
* New York City Labor Chorus Spring Concert - May 12


* Responding to the article by Mr Natapoff on 5-7-2012

Mr. Natapoff: I read your article on Misdemeanors with
interest. I am the Director of the Rural Justice
Center and have done extensive research in rural Courts
of limited jurisdictions...where is seldom a verbatem
record. We found that in several state the most common
misdemeanor is a "Bad Check" In these cases the
defendant often has an affirmitive defence but does not
know how to proceed and think if they wrote the check
they are guilty..the vast majority are women writing
check for groceries, fuel or medicine. Typically they
beleived they had money in their account to cover the
check thus no intent to defraud thus not guilty under
most statutes.

We found one county in Missouri (Pemiscot) in which we
looked back into the records and could not find a
single not guilty plea. In one of those cases a young
black women was accused of attempting to steal a pack
of cigerettes, she was held in jail for 10 days before
trial and during that time she was raped by a local
policeman. We filed a case in federal court and
reached a monetary settlement but the policeman was
never charged for the assult.

Under inhancements a misdemeanor can come back to haunt
a defendant.

Maurice D. Geiger, Director
Rural Justice Center
118 Birch Hill Rd.
N. Conway, NH 03860


* Ideology and Electricity: The Soviet Experience in

Probably the best analysis of, and justification for, the
Soviet intervention in Afghanistan that I have read. After
30 years it is permissible to say these things.

Daniel Morgan


An interesting and perhaps a useful "alternative view" of
Afghan history.

David McReynolds


* Amid Europe's Crisis - A Surge from the Left

Hopefully Hollande will win and hopefully he will be better
than Sarkozy. I'm all for coalitions and big tents but the
previous leader of the Socialist party was also the head of
the IMF. The Financial Times assessment of Hollande as
"hardly a rabid socialist" may be ironic understatement.

Jim Price


* Re: Readers Write: May 4, Pete Seeger's Birthday
TO: Steve Share, et al, re "If I Had A Hammer":

Lee Hays wrote the words to "If I Had A Hammer," inspired by
the ending of Marc Blitzstein's "Airborne" Symphony and its
words: "Not without warning!"

He sent them to Pete Seeger, who set them to music. I read
this in Lee Hays' memoir, sent to me by Tony Saletan. After
Dave Dellinger's funeral at Riverside Church a few years

I drove Pete & Toshi to the station and told him this. He
said he had been unaware of the Blitzstein inspiration until
I told him about it.

He also said Harold Leventhal had forbidden the Weavers to
sing the song: "I got you off the blacklist and I'm not
going to have you going around singing about hammers and
sickles now!"

That's why it fell to Peter, Paul and Mary to make the song
a hit.

For solidarity (and accuracy :>) -

Leonard J. Lehrman


* How did Quebec Students Mobilize Hundreds of Thousands for



Three students discuss the role of direct democracy and
political demands in building a massive movement
May 4, 2012


* May 9th Film on Cuba - Will the Real Terrorists Please
Stand Up

May 9th, 2012 7:30 PM


Will the Real Terrorists Please Stand Up?
A Film by Saul Landau with Commentary by Michael S. Smith

In April 1961, the CIA sent a force of Cuban exiles to
overthrow the Cuban government. This resulted in the Bay of
Pigs Fiasco. Fifty years later, a new documentary shows that
US-backed violence against Cuba continued for decades. The
new film by Saul Landau, with Danny Glover, anti-Cuba
terrorists, and Fidel Castro himself (filmed recently) is
combined with fascinating archival footage and a rare
recorded interview from prison with one of the Cuban 5.

Michael Steven Smith is an attorney practicing in New York
City and a board member of the Center for Constitutional
Rights. He is the author of Notebook of a Sixties Lawyer: An
Unrepentant Memoir and Lawyers You'll Like, and the co-
editor of The Emerging Police State by William Kunstler. He
is co-author along with Michael Ratner of Who Killed Che?:
How the CIA Got Away with Murder.(OR Books)

Sliding scale: $6/$10/$15
Free for Brecht Forum Subscribers

The Brecht Forum
451 West Street (that's the West Side Highway)
between Bank & Bethune Streets
NYC 10014

[thanks to Merle Ratner for forwarding this to Portside]


* New York City Labor Chorus Spring Concert - May 12

Saturday, May 12, 8:00 pm (Doors open at 7:30)

Where: People's Voice Cafe, 40 East 35th Street

Tickets: At the door only: $18, $15 students and seniors;
nobody turned away

Bring your friends, your families, people you work with...
Click here for the Labor Chorus - http://www.nyclc.org/
here for People's Voice Cafe -

New York City Labor Chorus
275 Seventh Avenue
18th Floor
New York, NY 10001



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