Wednesday, July 20, 2011
LOWER MANHATTAN — Survivors who fled the flaming World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001 will not be allowed to attend the city's annual commemoration ceremony at Ground Zero this year, DNAinfo has learned.
The mayor's office, which runs the ceremony, informed the World Trade Center Survivors' Network last week that there will be no room for them at this year's 10th anniversary ceremony, which will be held for the first time at the newly built 9/11 memorial, the city said.
"In years past, members of this survivors' group were permitted to attend once it was clear that attendance numbers of victims’ family members would allow it," said Andrew Brent, spokesman for the mayor's office.
"The commemoration ceremony is for victims' family members, and this year – on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 – the expectation is there will be no opportunity for members of the group to attend."
September 11th will again be an emotional day for victims’ family members, survivors, responders, millions of New Yorkers and people from all over the country and the world, but obvious space constraints on the Memorial plaza will limit the attendees to victims’ families," Brent added.
Survivors of the 9/11 attacks had called the mayor's office in the runup to the anniversary to ask for permission to attend again this year. Survivors were initially not allowed to attend the name-reading ceremony in the years immediately following the terrorist attacks, but were later granted access, the group said.
Leaders of the WTC Survivors' Network emailed to alert its members Tuesday night.
"We were recently informed by the mayor's office that attendance at this year's September 11th name reading ceremony will be reserved for family members only and if an exception is made for us we won't know until just a few days beforehand," wrote organizers Richard Zimbler and Brendan Chellis.
"I'm sure we speak for everyone in saying that this is particularly disappointing because we have attended the ceremony every year since the mayor's office first allowed us to go."
Survivors still plan to go to the memorial, either by attending on Sept. 12 or by finding out at the last minute that there is room for them on the anniversary, they said.
"We do intend to be there one way or another...," they wrote. "Even when they could barely get a thousand people there, or when the weather was horrible, survivors were there to remember those who were lost and show our thanks for being the lucky ones to get out."
Staff at National September 11 Memorial & Museum have previously said they expect record attendance from victims' family members on the 10th anniversary of the attack, and the new 9/11 memorial has a limited capacity because it is surrounded by construction.
But for those who almost lost their lives that day, the exclusion is too much.
"It's a real slap in the face on top of everything else we've already had to go through," said Shannon Loy, who escaped the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 after going to the building on business. "It makes me really sad."
Loy, 38, who lives in North Kansas City, MO, started an online petition asking the city to reconsider its decision. The petition has already gathered more than 500 signatures, many accompanied by emotional pleas.
"There is a scar inside us that needs to heal," wrote one person who signed the petition.
Unlike some of the other survivors, Loy has not returned to New York City since the Twin Towers crumbled around her.
Read more: http://www.dnainfo.com/20110713/downtown/no-room-for-911-survivors-at-10th-anniversary-ceremony-city-says#ixzz1SgETnTHk
Laurence M. Vance
July 19, 2011
It is without question that Americans are in love with the military. Even worse, though, is that their love is unqualified, unconditional, unrelenting, and unending.
I have seen signs praising the troops in front of all manner of businesses, including self-storage units, bike shops, and dog grooming.
Many businesses offer discounts to military personnel not available to doctors, nurses, and others who save lives instead of destroy them.
Special preference is usually given to veterans seeking employment, and not just for government jobs.
Many churches not only recognize veterans and active-duty military on the Sunday before holidays, they have special military appreciation days as well.
Even many of those who oppose an interventionist U.S. foreign policy and do not support foreign wars hold the military in high esteem.
All of these things are true no matter which country the military bombs, invades, or occupies. They are true no matter why the military does these things. They are true no matter what happens while the military does these things. They are true no matter which political party is in power.
The love affair that Americans have with the military – the reverence, the idolatry, the adoration, yea, the worship – was never on display like it was at the post office the other day.
While at the counter shipping some packages, a U.S. soldier, clearly of Vietnamese origin in name and appearance, dressed in his fatigues, was shipping something at the counter next to me. The postal clerk was beaming when he told the soldier how his daughter had been an MP in Iraq. Three times in as many minutes I heard the clerk tell the soldier – with a gleam in his eye and a solemn look on his face – “Thank you for your service.” The clerk even shook the soldier’s hand before he left.
I could not believe what I was seeing and hearing, and I am no stranger to accounts of military fetishes in action.
Aside from me not thanking that soldier for his service – verbally or otherwise – I immediately thought of four things.
One, what service did this soldier actually render to the United States? If merely drawing a paycheck from the government is rendering service, then we ought to thank every government bureaucrat for his service, including TSA goons. Did this soldier actually do anything to defend the United States, secure its borders, guard its shores, patrol its coasts, or enforce a no-fly zone over U.S. skies? How can someone blindly say “thank you for your service” when he doesn’t know what service was rendered?
Two, is there anything that U.S. soldiers could do to bring the military into disfavor? I can’t think of anything. Atrocities are dismissed as collateral damage in a moment of passion in the heat of battle by just a few bad apples. Unjust wars, we are told, are solely the fault of politicians not the soldiers that do the actual fighting. Paul Tibbets and his crew are seen as heroes for dropping an atomic bomb on Hiroshima. Before he died, Tibbets even said that he had no second thoughts and would do it again. I suspect that if the United States dropped an atomic bomb tomorrow on Afghanistan and Pakistan, killing everyone and everything, and declaring the war on terror over and won, a majority of Americans would applaud the Air Force crew that dropped the bomb and give them a ticker-tape parade.
Three, why is it that Americans only thank American military personnel for their service? Shouldn’t foreign military personnel be thanked for service to their country? What American military worshippers really believe is that foreign military personnel should only be thanked for service to their government when their government acts in the interests of the United States. Foreign soldiers are looked upon as heroic if they refuse to obey a military order to shoot or kill at the behest of their government as long as such an order is seen as not in the interests of the United States. U.S. soldiers, however, are always expected to obey orders, even if it means going to Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, or Libya under false pretenses.
And four, what is a Vietnamese man – who most certainly has relatives, or friends or neighbors of relatives, that were killed or injured by U.S. bombs and bullets during the Vietnam War – doing joining the U.S. military where he can be sent to shoot and bomb foreigners like the U.S. military did to his people?
And aside from these four things, I’m afraid I must also say: Sorry, soldiers, I don’t thank you for your service.
- I don’t thank you for your service in fighting foreign wars.
- I don’t thank you for your service in fighting without a congressional declaration of war.
- I don’t thank you for your service in bombing and destroying Iraq and Afghanistan.
- I don’t thank you for your service in killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and Afghans.
- I don’t thank you for your service in expanding the war on terror to Pakistan and Yemen.
- I don’t thank you for your service in occupying over 150 countries around the world.
- I don’t thank you for your service in garrisoning the planet with over 1,000 military bases.
- I don’t thank you for your service in defending our freedoms when you do nothing of the kind.
- I don’t thank you for your service as part of the president’s personal attack force to bomb, invade, occupy, and otherwise bring death and destruction to any country he deems necessary.
Thank you for your service? I don’t think so.
GREENFIELD -- It took a Greenfield District Court jury about two hours on Tuesday to acquit a pair of New Hampshire men accused of illegally filming at the Franklin County Jail last summer.
"We can put this behind us and move on with our other projects," said defendant Pete Eyre, who along with Adam Mueller had been charged with unlawfully filming law enforcement officials at the Greenfield jail last July.
Eyre, 31, and Mueller, 28, both of Keene, are subscribers ofvoluntaryism, an anti-government movement that favors the concept of natural law or voluntary adherence to rules and regulations over a state-sanctioned system of laws.
The announcement came as Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met in Cairo on Monday, under the auspices of Egyptian authorities, with Ramadan Shallah, Secretary-General of the Islamic Jihad , and his deputy, Ziad Nakhleh.
Economics Professor: "[We’ll Have] a Never-Ending Depression Unless We Repudiate the Debt, Which Never Should Have Been Extended In The First Place"
Leading Austrian-school economist Murray Rothbard - an American - wrote in 1992:
Economics professor Steve Keen is also calling for a debt jubilee, stating:
As I've noted for years, the entire strategy of the Bush and Obama economics teams have been to prevent the big banks, bondholders and other creditors from having to take haircuts by writing down the bad loans, phony instruments and bad debt. They have suspended any objective accounting requirements, allowed endless shell games to hide the debt and pretend all of the insolvent creditors are solvent, done everything under the sun to artificially prop up asset prices, turned a blind eye to the underlying fraud which caused the bubble, the toxic investment instruments and false representations, and then helped cover up the mess. See this, this, this and this.
I noted last month:
Failing to acknowledge the bad debt is dooming the world economy. As leading independent banking analyst Chris Whalen points out:
And Paul Mason - economics editor for BBC Newsnight - told Democracy Now on July 1:
Repudiating Debt is MORAL
Religions were founded on the concept of debt forgiveness.
For example, Matthew 6:12 says:
As I've previously noted, periodic times of debt forgiveness - or debt "jubilees" - were a normal part ancient Jewish and Christian religions.
David Graeber, author of "Debt: The First 5,000 Years" told Democracy Now recently:
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard wrote in 2009:
Repudiating Debt is "Odious" Debt LEGAL
Former Managing Director and board member of Wall Street investment bank Dillon Read, president of Hamilton Securities Group, Inc., an investment bank, and former government servant Catherine Austin Fitts wrote:
Congresswoman Kaptur advises her constituents facing foreclosure to demand that the original mortgage papers be produced. She says that - if the bank can't produce the mortgage papers - then the homeowner can stay in the house.
Repudiating Debt Is Politically EMPOWERING
Matt Taibbi wrote last year:
Similarly, Gregor MacDonald argued in February 2009:
The most cynical (but not necessarily inaccurate) view of debt I've seen is that banks loan out imaginary money they don't really have, which money is "collateralized" by capital they do not really have, which is, in turn, based upon central bank printing presses which create money out of thin air which the central banks don't really have. But then when debtors have trouble repaying onerous loans, the bankers seize real assets. See this, this and this.
Repudiating Debt is POPULAR
Walking away from home mortgages has actually become mainstream, being trumpeted by:
And Max Keiser predicts that the revolts in Greece, Spain and elsewhere will play out in the U.S. in the form of mass defaults on mortgages later this year.
David Anderson QC who is currently the Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation said special branch officers questioned 2,687 people who were detained at random for more than an hour in 2009-2010 with detention of 466 people taking up to nine hours.
Anderson said the number of the detainees under the schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000 for 2010-2011 is yet to be published but added his research shows whatever the number, the powers are leaving Muslims with the “negative experience” that the regulations are targeted at them.
This comes as the Federation of Student Islamic Societies earlier said that ethnic or religious minorities especially those from Asia are up to 42 times more likely to be stopped and searched compared with the white people.
The concerns among several minority groups has led the Home Office to pledge an investigation into the concerns that minorities “are disproportionately affected” by the schedule 7 powers.