Freedom Seven Strike Back Against NDAA And Unlimited Detention Without Due Process
Mar 2012 30

Freedom Seven Strike Back Against NDAA And Unlimited Detention Without Due Process

Posted In Activism,Blog,Politics

by Nicole Powers



Video streaming by Ustream

Above: Footage of the press conference organized by Revolution Truth in association with Demand Progress courtesy of Tim Pool a.k.a. @timcast.
(Actual conference starts at 1 min 40 secs.)

Thursday, March 29, 2012 was a landmark day in the fight for freedom as we know it. A group of journalists and activists gave opening statements in a federal lawsuit seeking an injunction against the implementation of key clauses in the National Defense Authorization Act, which has shattered many of the founding principles of the United States.

Chris Hedges (a Pulitzer Prize-winning ex-New York Times reporter) initially filed the lawsuit. It was subsequently amended to become a multi-plaintiff case, with six further names signing on for round one of what is hoped will be a multi-stage legal action. Dubbed the Freedom Seven, alongside Hedges the list of named plaintiffs now includes Daniel Ellsberg (a former US military analyst who is best known for releasing the Pentagon Papers), Professor Noam Chomsky (a renowned academic, activist, and writer), Birgitta Jonsdottir (an Icelandic politician and pro-WikiLeaks campaigner), Alexa O’Brien (a journalist and founder of the US Day of Rage electoral reform campaign), Kai Wargalla (the founder of Occupy London), and Tangerine Bolen (the founder of activist and alternative media organization Revolution Truth).

Opening statements were heard by Judge Katherine Forrest at the US District Court Building at 500 Pearl Street in Manhattan. Hedges, O’Brien, and Wargalla testified in person, and author Naomi Wolf read written testimony on behalf of Jonsdottir, who had been cautioned against traveling to the US due to her involvement with Wikileaks. Much of the case rests of the definition of “associated forces” – or lack thereof – since under the NDAA the military can indefinitely detain anyone it suspects has “substantially supported” al-Qaida, the Taliban or “associated forces.”

In a press release put out by The Sparrow Project, Hedges said: “I have had dinner more times than I can count with people whom this country brands as terrorists. But that does not make me one.” Given the possible broad interpretation of “associated forces” journalists such as Hedges – as well as activists and protesters – now operate under threat of possible detention without due process. However, to win the right to continue the court action, the judge has to agree that at least one of the seven plaintiffs has established a “reasonable fear” of being detained for exercising their constitutionally protected right to free speech.

During a press conference held outside the court at 2.30 PM on Thursday, Bolen made the following powerful statement in support of the Freedom Seven’s action:

“The NDAA is an egregious assault on our civil liberties…I approached Chris Hedges and asked him to amend his lawsuit to be a multi-plaintiff suit because the NDAA covers all kinds of people from around the world, and the seven of us who started this suit all feel we are in imminent danger under this law…

“I started an organization called Revolution Truth, and we’ve conducted campaigns in defense of Wikileaks and Bradley Manning. We also are an alternative media organization. We host livestreaming panel discussions with people from around the world. We were about to embark on a panel series with Middle Eastern revolutionaries and activists, including members of Hamas and other people [from] whom we want to hear about their ideas about the word ‘terrorism’ and the US government’s War on Terror…

“But we frankly were an international all volunteer group of about 25 people, and none of us feel safe in engaging in the work we normally do as journalists and activists. Under the NDAA we actually feel we are in danger, so we suspended our panel series for the time being. Furthermore, I’ve worked directly with some Wikileaks staff…and from the moment I began speaking with Wikileaks I was warned that all my communications would henceforth be routed through the NSA. This happened about a year ago. It’s something I’m used to at this point, but frankly with the confluence of factors and forces [of] the last 10 years of the laws, including the AUMF, the Patriot Act, and now the NDAA, I frankly don’t feel safe under my own government. I’m an activist, I’m a professional, I’m a Democrat, and I’m suing Obama over this…

“Our goal is to stop the unconstitutional provisions of this law, specifically sections 1021 and 1023, and to force the US government to better define its terms. Right now, it uses language in this law that is incredibly broad, and we consider very dangerous for not just this round of plaintiffs, but for all of us at some point. We actually think that the language of the law ultimately could be used against people like Occupy Wall Street and other protesters, so we’re determined to make sure our Constitution stands, and so does our Bill of Rights…I think we have a long uphill battle ahead of us. Obviously we’ve had 10 years of both Republicans and Democrats egregiously assaulting our liberties, so this is just the start…

“Chris Hedges filed this lawsuit because he spent 15 years working for the New York Times as a war correspondent. He’s personally interviewed members of Hamas and members of al-Qaeda, and the language of the law in sections 1021 and 1023 is so vague. It says “associated forces” and it talks about people who engage in hostilities against the United States. It doesn’t clearly define, as far as we’re concerned, “associated forces.” It leaves it so vague and broad that a journalist such as Chris Hedges, who meets with or gives a platform to people we, quote, call terrorists could end up being in trouble under this law…As far as we understand it, the language of this law contravenes three-quarters of the Bill of Rights and multiple Constitutional Amendments.”

During the press conference Wolf also spoke about the “chilling effect” the law is already having on the activities of journalists. She went on to say that her own activities had been directly curtailed, and that she had declined meetings with both Julian Assange and a group of former Guantanamo prisoners because of the threat posed by the NDAA.

Wargalla, who co-founded the Facebook and Twitter accounts that sparked Occupy London and was a key organizer of the subsequent encampments in the UK’s capital, then went on to explain that as an occupier she has already been defined as a member of a terrorist organization by law enforcement and government agencies. “We’re a peaceful and non-violent protest. Nevertheless the City of London police department put us on a list just under al-Qaeda saying that we were a terrorist organization,” said Wargalla. “I refuse to be silent and I refuse to be scared, and I would encourage everyone around the world to speak up and stand up against this law…If we don’t speak up now it may very well be too late.”

Civil rights activist Cornell West was in court to support the Freedom Seven, and also addressed the gathered press. If the group manages to establish legal standing, West hopes to sign on for the second round of action, which will be opened up to a larger pool of individuals who now operate under threat of the oppressive provisions of the NDAA. “You gotta keep track of this trial,” urged West. “Freedom is precious. If you don’t fight for it, you lose it.”

Reports from inside the courtroom can be found at Guardian.co.uk/, Courthousenews.com/ and Dissenter.firedoglake.com/.

Read the full text of the plaintiffs initial brief and the NDAA. For more information visit StopNDAA.org/.

NEW SG Interview: Wil Wheaton – TableTop
Mar 2012 30

NEW SG Interview: Wil Wheaton – TableTop

Posted In All Things SG,Blog,Entertainment,Gaming,Geek,Internuts,Interviews,TV

by Nicole Powers


“You should never lose the joy of playing a game in pursuit of victory.”
- Wil Wheaton

As a beloved (and much missed) former Newswire editor, Wil Wheaton needs little by way of introduction within the SuicideGirls community. A revered Star Trek: Next Generation alumni, after his role on the show came to an end, Wheaton turned to writing, carving a significant niche for himself as a geek’s geek in the early blogosphere. He was also one of the first power users on Twitter, and is a prolific poster on G+ and now Facebook (a platform he’d deliberately avoided until recently). Wheaton has also been working as an actor with increasing regularity of late, thanks to reoccurring roles in Eureka, Leverage, The Big Bang Theory, and Felicia Day’s hugely popular web-based show The Guild.

For his latest project, TableTop, Wheaton and Day have joined forces again. The new web series will be broadcast on Day’s Google-funded premium YouTube channel Geek & Sundry. This time Wheaton is also wearing the executive producer’s hat, as well as appearing on camera as the show’s host. TableTop aims to combine the aesthetic of celebrity poker with Wheaton’s passion for tabletop games – something he hopes to instill in even the most reluctant of gamers via the show.

We caught up with Wheaton by phone to talk TableTop. Read our exclusive interview with Wil Wheaton on SuicideGirls.com.

Join SG’s Board Game Group to talk about your favorite board game with like minded people, look for gamers in your area, and ask about games you’re curious about.

SG Radio feat. Buzz Osborne of The Melvins – April 1
Mar 2012 30

SG Radio feat. Buzz Osborne of The Melvins – April 1

Posted In Blog,Entertainment,Music,SG Radio

by Blogbot

This Sunday (April 1st) on SuicideGirls Radio we have a real treat for music aficionados. SG Radio host Nicole Powers (SG’s Managing Editor) will be chatting with Buzz Osborne of The Melvins. He’ll be delving into his personal music collection, spinning tracks from the band’s new EP, The Bulls & The Bees, and giving us an exclusive preview of cuts from their forthcoming album Freak Puke.

Tune in to the world’s leading naked radio show for two hours of totally awesome tunes and extreme conversation – and don’t let yo momma listen in!

Listen to SG Radio live Sunday night from 10 PM til Midnight at: suicidegirlsradio.indie1031.com/

And follow @SG_Radio on Twitter because we like cyberstalkers.

About The Melvins

Guitarist, singer and songwriter Buzz Osborne is the founder and driving force behind seminal post punk band the Melvins, an outfit beloved by music fans that has defied definition for close to three decades.

The Melvins have just released a new EP, The Bulls & The Bees, which is free to download thanks to sponsorship from Scion. The band will be heading out on tour to support the new EP from April 11 to May 11.

Freak Puke, a new full-length album by Melvins Lite, a new incarnation of the Melvins that features Buzz, longtime drummer Dale Crover, and stand-up bassist Trevor Dunn (from Mr. Bungle, Fantomas and Tomahawk) will be unleashed on June 5.

Link Love:

themelvins.net/
twitter.com/melvinsdotcom

Fiction Friday: The Killswitch Review – Chapter Ten, Part One
Mar 2012 30

Fiction Friday: The Killswitch Review – Chapter Ten, Part One

Posted In Art,Blog,Books,Entertainment,Fiction,Geek,Internuts

by Steven-Elliot Altman (SG Member: Steven_Altman)

Our Fiction Friday serialized novel, The Killswitch Review, is a futuristic murder mystery with killer sociopolitical commentary (and some of the best sex scenes we’ve ever read!). Written by bestselling sci-fi author Steven-Elliot Altman (with Diane DeKelb-Rittenhouse), it offers a terrifying postmodern vision in the tradition of Blade Runner and Brave New World

By the year 2156, stem cell therapy has triumphed over aging and disease, extending the human lifespan indefinitely. But only for those who have achieved Conscientious Citizen Status. To combat overpopulation, the U.S. has sealed its borders, instituted compulsory contraception and a strict one child per couple policy for those who are permitted to breed, and made technology-assisted suicide readily available. But in a world where the old can remain vital forever, America’s youth have little hope of prosperity.

Jason Haggerty is an investigator for Black Buttons Inc, the government agency responsible for dispensing personal handheld Kevorkian devices, which afford the only legal form of suicide. An armed “Killswitch” monitors and records a citizen’s final moments — up to the point where they press a button and peacefully die. Post-press review agents — “button collectors” — are dispatched to review and judge these final recordings to rule out foul play.

When three teens stage an illegal public suicide, Haggerty suspects their deaths may have been murders. Now his race is on to uncover proof and prevent a nationwide epidemic of copycat suicides. Trouble is, for the first time in history, an entire generation might just decide they’re better off dead.

(Catch up with the previous installments of Killswitch – see links below – then continue reading after the jump…)

[Keep Reading...]

Tease of the Day
Mar 2012 30

Tease of the Day

Posted In Blog,Tease

Pilot Suicide in Rag Doll

  • INTO: Bicycling, ceramic animals, collecting old stuff, records, vinyasa, a good rhyming thesaurus, word masters, traveling.
  • NOT INTO: Mosquitos and casseroles.
  • MAKES ME HAPPY: My dogs Igby and Fred, sex, cuddles, autumn, making things.
  • MAKES ME SAD: Friends who live far away, the world we live in.
  • 5 THINGS I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: My dogs, caffeine, iPhone, bicycle, paint.
  • VICES: Tattoos, olives, Jackie-Os.
  • I SPEND MOST OF MY FREE TIME: Raping department stores and designing synthetic hairballs for ceramic cats. I also river dance the shit out of spiders from time to time.

Get to know Pilot better over at SuicideGirls.com!


The Art of SuicideGirls Feat. Gary Mike a.k.a. Guss1470
Mar 2012 29

The Art of SuicideGirls Feat. Gary Mike a.k.a. Guss1470

Posted In All Things SG,Art,Blog,DIY

by Blogbot

Artist / SG Member Name: My real name is Gary Mike, and my SG member name is Guss1470. Guss is just a name I like and used while online but I am starting to use my real name more often.

Mission Statement: For my art I really don’t have one. I just like to draw and find out what I can do. The first and main purpose for my art is my own enjoyment, challenge, and to see people enjoy my work. I want to see if I can do it. I like to try different styles just to see if I can.

Medium: Well anything I can get my hands on. I think anything can be a medium but the main one I use is pencil and pen. With my computer it’s a Bamboo and Photoshop. I draw my art on paper first then scan, touch up or trace in Photoshop then color. In the past I have worked with watercolor, color pencil, acrylic, chalk, and clay. I even thought of buying a load of makeup from Mary Kay just to play with skin tones in my art.

Aesthetic: I really don’t know. I like sketchy style, clean style. It’s like the question “who is your favorite band” – it just depends on your mood, what your doing, and how your feeling.

Notable Achievements: I think just making people smile with my art. I really am not aiming for anything when I do my art except to challenge myself and make you smile.

Why We Should Care: Not to sound mean, but you don’t have to. If no one cared about my art I still would be doing the same thing. I have been doing this since I was 3 or 4 and this is what I do for fun. I don’t know any other way. I don’t consider my work special. I draw all the time and throw away my sketches and finished work cause I can do it again. I have given away sketch books to friends, my ex, and to random people because I’m done with them and have no reason to keep them. I think it’s the people that see my art that consider it special so the question goes to you: Why do you like my art???

I Want Me Some: I don’t do contests, I don’t sell my art, I have no political agenda. If you want me to draw something I’ll do it for free. If I have time, all you have to do is ask. You can also check out my work on DeviantArt.

[Keep Reading...]

NEW SG Interview: Karen Abbott – American Rose
Mar 2012 29

NEW SG Interview: Karen Abbott – American Rose

Posted In Blog,Books,Comics,Entertainment,Interviews

by Alex Dueben


“Most of today’s successful provocateurs draw from Gypsy’s playbook.”
- Karen Abbott

Karen Abbott’s first book was Sin in the Second City: Madams, Ministers, Playboys and the Battle for America’s Soul, which needles to say, was not the kind of history book you read in school. Centered around the Everleigh Sisters who ran a prominent Chicago brothel for more than a decade, Abbott explored not just the sisters and their many famous clients, but the religious and political figures who collaborated with, fought against, and made their names, locally and nationally, around this issue. Abbott’s most recent book which has just been released in paperback is American Rose: A Nation Laid Bare: The Life and Times of Gypsy Rose Lee.

You know Gypsy Rose Lee. The legendary striptease artist and burlesque performer, author of the novel The G-String Murders, which was turned into the Barbara Stanwyck film Lady of Burlesque, who authored a largely fictional memoir (before writing such a tome became popular) that was turned into one of the great musicals. What’s clear from reading her book, is how much we don’t know about Gypsy Rose Lee.

American Rose isn’t a biography, but uses Lee and her career as a way to look at the thirties when vaudeville died and burlesque took over, and when culture as a whole was in a state of flux. It’s fascinating portrait of the theater-owning Minsky Brothers, moralist New York City mayor Fiorella La Guardia, author Carson McCullers, and America in the midst of an economic Depression but a cultural revolution.

Read our exclusive interview with Karen Abbott on SuicideGirls.com.