Featured Post

CINDY SHEEHAN INTERVIEWS RAY LIGHT for CINDY SHEEHAN'S SOAPBOX (SOAPBOX PODCAST 4/16/17)

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

ROL, USA NEWSLETTER #110 (SEPT/OCT 2018) SYNOPSIS

ROL, USA NEWSLETTER NUMBER 110 (September/October 2018) SYNOPSIS

Revolutionary Organization of Labor, USA
#110
SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER, 2018
_______________________________________________
CLICK HERE FOR FULL NEWSLETTER 
 
MAIN ARTICLES
 
On the Deaths of Aretha Franklin and John McCain

Two Funerals—Two Sets of Problems

by RAY LIGHT
 
Aretha Franklin, passed away on August 16, 2018.  After a four day celebration of her life, including her involvement with the civil rights movement and her magnificent music career spanning more than six decades, the lengthy and star-studded funeral service for the “Queen of Soul” was held on Friday, August 31. The two most recent sitting presidents, Republican George W. Bush and Democrat Barack Obama, sent letters to be read at the great singer’s tribute. However, neither of them attended her funeral service. 
http://rayolightnewsletter.blogspot.com/2018/09/on-deaths-of-aretha-franklin-and-john.html
    
 
********

Of "Heroes" and "Communist Dictators"
by
Cindy Sheehan
 
The first time I met Senator John McCain, I was still under the false impression that, even though he was a Republican, he was still slightly independent and not entirely reprehensible.

The occasion was the now infamous meeting our family had with then president George Bush in 2004, about six weeks after Casey was killed in Iraq.

Our family was invited for a “sit-down” with Bush at Ft. Lewis up near Seattle. The government was paying, so we agreed. We had some things we wanted to “chat” with him about, also.
 
http://rayolightnewsletter.blogspot.com/2018/09/of-heroes-and-communist-dictators-by.html
 
**********
 
In Support of the Batasan 5
by
Cindy Sheehan
 
To Whom It May Concern:

In response to the appeal of the Movement Against Tyranny (MAT), and its conveners, Dr. Carol Araullo and Sr. Mary John Mananzan, we are adding our voices condemning the issuance of bogus warrants of arrest by the Palayan, Nueva Ecija court for former Makabayan representatives Teddy Casino, Satur Ocampo and former Department of Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano and current National Anti-Poverty Commission Convener Secretary Liza Maza.
 
http://rayolightnewsletter.blogspot.com/2018/09/in-defense-of-barasan-4-by-ray-light.html
 
********
 
 
 

Who Said it? From ROL, USA NL #110


  (FIRST APPEARED IN ROL, USA NL #110)

Do you know who said it??

“A man has no reason to be ashamed of having an ape for his grandfather. If there were an ancestor whom I should feel shame in recalling it would rather be a man—a man of restless and versatile intellect—who ... plunges into scientific questions with which he has no real acquaintance, only to obscure them by an aimless rhetoric, and distract the attention of his hearers from the real point at issue by eloquent digressions and skilled appeals to religious prejudice.”

Hint: A staunch defender of Darwin and evolution, this great nineteenth century scientist, was not thrown off by the “personal attack” on his own family heritage.  To the contrary, he exposed the bankruptcy of the argument presented by the Bishop of  Oxford, Samuel Wilberforce, in their noted 1860 debate on evolution at the Oxford University Museum.  He became known as “Darwin’s Bulldog” for his energetic defense of the new scientific theory. (This was just one year after the publication of Darwin’s Origin of the Species.) In England and worldwide, he decisively affirmed the positive and liberating character of scientific knowledge.

–Still stumped?   See below for the mystery answer.



Thomas Huxley

Thomas Henry Huxley was born in Ealing, London, England in 1825 and died in 1895. Born into a well-educated middle class family that had fallen upon hard times, Huxley attended school for only two years, leaving at the age of ten. Yet, self-taught with apprenticeships to several men of science, he rose to become a prominent biologist, specializing in comparative anatomy. Moreover, his defense of Darwin and the new evolutionary biological theory, was part of Huxley’s emergence as “the leading person among those who reformed the Royal Society, persuaded government about science, and established scientific education in British schools and universities. Before him, science was mostly a gentleman’s occupation; after him, science was a profession.” (wikipedia.org)

It is telling that Huxley’s powerful, positive defense of science coincided with the rising British Empire, with England at the height of its global power economically as well as politically and militarily.

Today, in the USA, in the age of Trump and his Republican and Democratic Party enablers, the always present “know-nothing” political strain in the U.S. culture has reached beyond the stage of  denial of the value of facts, to the absurd assertion of “alternate facts” by official representatives of the Trump Regime and the denial of objective truth. No doubt this is one significant sign of the precipitous decline and fall of the U.S. Empire.
—the Editor

In Defense of the Barasan 4 by Ray Light


 (First appeared in ROL, USA NL #110)

To Whom It May Concern:

In response to the appeal of the Movement Against Tyranny (MAT), and its conveners, Dr. Carol Araullo and Sr. Mary John Mananzan, we are adding our voices condemning the issuance of bogus warrants of arrest by the Palayan, Nueva Ecija court for former Makabayan representatives Teddy Casino, Satur Ocampo and former Department of Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano and current National Anti-Poverty Commission Convener Secretary Liza Maza.

The rehash of these old bankrupt charges, reissued on July 11, 2018 by Judge Evelyn A. Atienza-Turla, already withdrawn by her a decade ago, exposes the repressive state character of this current judiciary action. Because of the outstanding qualities of these four legal “targets,” the Duterte Regime stands exposed as merely the current running dog of United States imperialism  All four, Casino, Ocampo, Mariano and Maza, have proven their love and loyalty to the Filipino people over many decades of determined and self-sacrificing struggle for the emancipation of the Philippines from more than a century of bloody U.S. imperialist invasion, war and occupation and for the emancipation thereby of the Filipino people. All four have threatened the U.S. Empire’s stranglehold on the Filipino People’s Patrimony and they have threatened the flow of private profit of the U.S. financial oligarchy and the domestic ruling oligarchy. This is their real ‘’crime.”

Moreover, the people have shown their appreciation for their leadership by electing them to office where the opportunity has been presented. Let the Duterte government show some respect for the Filipino masses and at least some independence from the rulers of the U.S. Empire by ending this political witch hunt now!

Ray Light, General Secretary,
Revolutionary Organization of Labor, USA,
On behalf of the ROL-USA Secretariat          (August 2018)

******

Good News Update (September 2018): In the face of popular Filipino mass protest, the Duterte Regime has released the Batasan 4. These four outstanding fighters for independence and national democracy in the Philippines, all previously popularly elected officials, are hopefully back at work helping to lead this just struggle that is an integral part of the fight for the world proletarian revolution in which we all have a stake.


Of "Heroes" and "Communist Dictators," by Cindy Sheehan


(Expanded version first appeared in ROL, USA NL #110)

Of “Heroes” and “Communist Dictators”
by CINDY SHEEHAN
July 21, 2017 (with current update)


Cindy Sheehan


The first time I met Senator John McCain, I was still under the false impression that, even though he was a Republican, he was still slightly independent and not entirely reprehensible.

The occasion was the now infamous meeting our family had with then president George Bush in 2004, about six weeks after Casey was killed in Iraq.

Our family was invited for a “sit-down” with Bush at Ft. Lewis up near Seattle. The government was paying, so we agreed. We had some things we wanted to “chat” with him about, also.

Along with about 16-17 other families in the same piteous situation, we cooled our jets for awhile in a waiting room at the base hospital. After a bit, we were ushered into a small curtained room to wait for 43. While we were waiting, the curtains parted and in walked McCain. I did mention to him that he had been a POW in another immoral war and I asked him why my son had to die. His response: “Well Cindy, if we don’t win in Iraq, then I am afraid for nothing.” After McCain left, we all wondered if he had been the “opening act” for Bush.

Fast forward six months to inauguration day for 43’s second term.



By that time, I was now very active opposing Bush and the wars and had founded Gold Star Families for Peace. I was invited to appear on Good Morning America (from the Library of Congress) early on the morning of the inauguration. After the interview, I was leaving and John McCain walked in to be interviewed—I reminded him that we had met at Ft. Irwin and I told him what I was up to. His response (which he later denied in our 3rd meeting) was: “The country needs people like you, too.”

After I protested Bush and the wars at Camp Casey in Crawford in August of 2005, I went to Washington DC for a huge antiwar rally in September and I met with many reps and Senators and John McCain was one of them. I reminded him that he had encouraged me to protest the war back in January and he said, “Why would I do that, I support it?” On the way out, he said, “Good luck, Cindy.” I said, “Thank you, you are wishing me luck to end the wars.” He said, “I take it back, then.”

I have been in Phoenix at his office a few times opposing his bellicosity with my dear antiwar friends there.

Since my first meeting with McCain in 2004, I am under no illusion that he is “independent” or not too reprehensible. In a nation of reprehensibles, he is near the top (or bottom) of the dung-heap. It’s normal that conservatives are praising him, but he is being lauded by liberals as an “American hero” also. That a war criminal who, with his own hands, murdered untold number of Vietnamese and with either incompetence or arrogance murdered 134 sailors on his aircraft carrier the USS Forrestal in Vietnam is considered a “hero” doesn’t say very much about this country.

Among others, Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT—yes, I know technically he is independent, but he’s about as independent from the Dems as McCain is from the GOP) has heaped praise upon the head of the slimy McCain since he was diagnosed with brain cancer. Now, I don’t expect Bernie Sanders to tweet, “Nice, a war criminal has cancer; isn’t karma a bitch?” But how can a person who protested the Vietnam War tweet this about McCain?
 


“John McCain is a hero, one of the most respected senators and a friend. The hopes and prayers of the nation are with him and his family.”  (Bernie Sanders, U.S. Senate candidate, VT, July 19, 2017)
In the ill-fated campaign of Sanders for president, after he was “accused” of being a supporter of President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela (Citgo oil provides low-cost or free heating oil for poor people in the Northeast), Sanders campaign sent out a fundraising blast to his supporters trashing the beloved Chavez by calling the populist president of Venezuela who was democratically elected many times (and survived a coup attempt and recall effort) a “dead, communist dictator.” (Unfortunately, he got the “dead” part right).

I was very privileged to know Hugo Chavez, and in contrast to McCain who never met a war he didn’t like, or a pocket he didn’t want to pick in reverse Robin Hood style, Chavez was a warm person who had a big heart and used the power of his office to elevate the condition of the poorest—often at the expense of the parasitic wealthy.

When Chavez was a military officer, he noticed that the government that he was sworn to serve was horribly oppressing its own people and, with other officers, tried to overthrow it.

On the other hand, McCain, who graduated 2nd to the bottom of his class at the Naval Academy used his military career to carouse and murder his way through Vietnam and with the help of his Admiral father, covered up his crimes to use his “heroic” “service” as a stepping-stone for greater political power.

If Obama and Sanders and many liberal talking blah-blah heads are praising the “American hero” McCain are they saying that the [U.S.] war in Vietnam was “heroic” and the millions of Vietnamese who died and continue to die from their poisoned country and landmines are just shit?

How can Obama tweet this about McCain?

“John McCain is an American hero & one of the bravest fighters

I’ve ever known. Cancer doesn’t know what it’s up against. Give it hell, John.” (Barack Obama, former president U.S., July 19, 2017)

(In a clip from The View all five participants are praising McCain like he is the purest politician alive.  He is: a rare breed, a role model, fearless, for the people, speaks truth to power, American hero, known fighter, has integrity, etc.) Liberals who thought McCain was the reincarnation of Adolf Hitler when he ran against Obama in 2008, are now gushing over how McCain corrected a woman on TV who was afraid of Obama because she thought he was an “Arab.”

“No,” McCain thoughtfully and with his “great” flair of being so gosh-darned “independent” corrected the woman and said that Obama was not an “Arab,” but a “good person.” Cogitate on that for a moment—liberals are praising a deeply bigoted statement. Like the Vietnamese, do liberals consider Arabs as shit?

John “Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran (and everywhere else, while we’re at it)” McCain has been one of the biggest devotees of this country’s imperial misadventures his entire life; however, the “Communist dictator” (i.e. Chavez) never once invaded or infested another country by his military. No, Chavez used Venezuelan oil and the force of his personality to not only improve the lives of Venezuelans, but to forge alliances and friendships throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Yes, even improving the lives of the poor in the United States.

Meeting McCain was like meeting a robot with insincere blue eyes: a male Hillary Clinton, if you will. With few exceptions, the humanoids that inhabit U.S. politics are cold, calculating and murderous liars.

Meeting Chavez was like coming home to your long lost brother who only wanted good things for everyone and was expansive and genuine in his hospitality and courageous in standing up to the Great Satan of the North.

I am not afraid to say that, although I am not thrilled that McCain has brain cancer, I am in no way sad about it, or conflicted about calling out the terrible crimes against humanity this man has committed in the name of American “heroism.” Illness, near death, or death itself should not confer immediate sainthood on profoundly criminal lives.

I would rather see him and his ilk rotting in Ft. Leavenworth.

Cancer claimed the lives of my sister Dede Miller and my comrade Hugo Chavez and millions of other good people, often after torturous struggles. Now, McCain.

The death of Chavez was a great loss to humanity; the death of McCain is not. We should have exactly the same sympathy and compassion for McCain that he showed to all his victims–at home and abroad–which is zero. 

Cancer is the deadly and too prevalent equalizer: it takes the good and evil, alike.

UPDATE:

John McCain passed away on 8/25/18—while we don’t celebrate his death we mourn for his scores and scores of victims. We certainly do not think it’s appropriate to elevate him to some great hero. In that light here is an update on the tweets from people whose devotion to U.S. Imperialism should no longer be denied:

FROM BERNIE SANDERS:

“John McCain was an American hero, a man of decency and

honor and a friend of mine. He will be missed not just in the U.S. Senate but by all Americans who respect integrity and independence. Jane and I send our deepest condolences to his family.” (August 25, 2018)    


 

REV. JESSE JACKSON (SR)

“People like Senator John McCain do not come in bunches like

grapes. They are rare like pearls. He represents the best in us. May God give him a special place in his bosom.” (August 25, 2018)



JOHN LEWIS (D-GA)


  “Senator John McCain was a warrior for peace. He will be

deeply missed by people all around the world.”  (August 25, 2018)


 






ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ
(U.S. House candidate, NY-14)

“John McCain’s legacy represents an unparalleled example of

human decency and American service.

As an intern, I learned a lot about the power of humanity in government through his deep friendship with Sen. Kennedy.

He meant so much, to so many. My prayers are with his family.”

NANCY PELOSI (D-CA)

“Senator John McCain was a leader & public servant of deep

patriotism, outstanding bravery & undaunted spirit. Throughout his career, we all saw his integrity, humility, courage & grace. May it be a comfort to his family to know that so many around the world mourn with them.” (August 25, 2018)

 


OF COURSE, HILLARY CLINTON

“Senator John McCain lived a life of service to his country,

from his heroism in the Navy to 35 years in Congress. He was a tough politician, a trusted colleague, and there will simply never be another like him.” (August 25, 2018)

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

 

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