Further to my description of the Critical Mass bike rally and the police excessive arrests for traffic violations, it is increasingly evident from reports filed on Democracy Now! and through personal reports that the police are arbitrarily arresting people including NYPD approved press and bystanders in the vicinity of a protest and keeping detainees in sub-s
The Washington Post continues to dig into the torture at Abu Ghraib, reporting a memo that General Ricardo Sanchez ordered the use of dogs, later modifying that order to use muzzled dogs only, still in contradiction of current Army manuals and the Geneva conventions. The WaPo article is detailed and refreshingly questioning in it's investigations.
In the tradition of funk with a message and big props to Fela Kuti and James Brown, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings have a new single out What If We All Stop Paying Taxes?, hosted on the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee site. I'm here to attest these guys and gals are incredible live on the NYC scene.
Last night I had the opportunity to celebrate my birthday joining (according to the NYPD) 5000 bike riders in a critical mass bike ride through Manhattan streets. That some 264 riders were arrested is ridiculous - at worst there were some traffic violations of riding through a red light - riders never impeded an ambulance or other important vehicle. These were misdemeanours, not offences warranting arrest.
Australian Prime Minister John Howard is refusing to comment on reports by U.S. military investigations that the Australian army officer who glossed over Red Cross reports was gagged by the Liberal government. Also of note is that Howard is expected to call an election this weekend in order to stifle debate in the parliament set to begin next week.
Pratap Chatterjee has an insightful article at AlterNet (who have also produced an excellent guide to anti-RNC activities) on the degree of waste in the reconstruction of Iraq and the fact that only 2% of the money appropriated for reconstruction has been spent, while much of the oil-for-food fund has actually been handed out to Halliburton with little accounting.
The Republicans are coming! The Republicans are coming! The first signs of the impending "big bang" created by the collision of New York City irreverent art and political protest around the Republican National Convention began last night with The Vomitorium, a reflection of the gorge-fests of the empire of ancient Rome with the new American empire of the Bush administration.