It is often said that you should not do certain things because you will wind up with your name on a list, or on “the list.” There have always been rumors of a semi-mythical list the government keeps of subversives or radicals, or enemies. In truth, the government, all governments, have always kept lists of enemies. This is not unique to fascists, or people who fetishize Prussia, or people who try to contact J Edgar Hoover on Ouija boards. In America, we have lists. No-Fly lists are a start.
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On May 11th, the USA Today published a multiple by-line story on their analysis of every single one of the 3517 Facebook Ads bought by shadowy sneaky Russians to influence the 2016 general election. This report, based on an indictment issued by Special Prosecutor Robert Muller, claims to show a focus on race and policing rather than guns and Benghazi. The story was given amplification by former Washington Post editor Anne Applebaum turned columnist and professor, with a stamp of academic authority that it does not deserve.
There is a legal tactic called SLAPP. SLAPP means Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation. It is a tactic used mostly by large corporations to intimidate political groups and the public at large from opposing some injustice. On April 26th the Yellow Springs School Board stooped to this new low by bringing suit “in excess of $25,000” against a former teacher for an anonymous reply to an article by this publication on Facebook they allege that she made.
The small town of Yellow Springs has seen much community outcry since the revelations last week that the school system allowed an alleged student rapist to remain in the schools for most of a year and that said student was the Principal's son. Many parents and other residents have openly called for answers from the school board and none has been forthcoming. The reason for the silence is simple.
April 7th opened up with a raid of the home and offices of Trump attorney Michael Cohen. These raids were directed by the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York not special prosecutor Robert Muller. That makes this a separate investigation and it has nothing to do with Russia. If the raids did have something to do with Russian influence on American elections, they would barely touch Michael Cohen and at least one prominent Republican would be in the cross-hairs. The narrative would draw a directly line between the US Senate, Russian banks and white supremacists.
People like Brock Turner can not develop and continue to exist without help from their parents and their parents' connections. This is how he managed to lie to the courts about his very location. Although he is also in the Miami Valley, upper-middle class suburbia would rather not look over the fence and see a mirror, when in reality Yellow Springs has it's own young privileged boy alleged to have raped at least two of his classmates without consequence.
One thing needs to be clear before any analysis of the powers behind the sudden rise of the March for our Lives movement is presented. The survivors who appear to lead the protest movement are not crisis actors as some conspiracy nuts have alleged. They are traumatized young people that really saw their friends murdered in a real event perpetrated by a really evil person. Their pain is real, their loss is real, but so is the cynical manipulation of the public mind by the powerful men and women who boosted them into the public limelight.
On Wednesday November 22, Jason Lee Van Dyke contacted Mockingbird Publishing to drop his lawsuit against us and myself personally. On Friday we agreed to his stipulation to dismiss with prejudice. That means he can not sue for the same article again. The order was filed and the judge agreed yesterday.
[The Following was posted originally as a fundraising update elsewhere. The crowd funding platform does not like updates this long. It is post here for reader edification and so that people receiving the abreviated update can read the full text. Thank you for your kind attention]
I'd like to thank those people who have donated to my legal defense. Your help has been a leg up, but this will be a long climb. Take a moment and share this update if you can.
I'm honored to be in such august company as Talib Kweli. I have never met him but he has done a great deal to raise the level of political discourse in this country, indeed in the world. He has used words as art to bring justice to the forefront of our national conversation. I have in the past covered his former writing partner Mos Def's activism against the force feeding of hunger strikers in America's gulag.