================================ FNV NEWSLETTER #123 ================================= March 28 2003 *A Few Things to Ponder....Hip Hop News Bits *Big Pimping 101: Dick Cheny's In The House *A Revised Apology From the Dixie Chicks *FBI Surveilling Michael Franti & Spearhead *Congress Wants to Give 3 Years Jailtime to Downloaders *Killers on the Payroll by Paris *10 Steps to End War by Paris The FNV Newsletter c 2002 Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org =========================================== A FEW THINGS TO PONDER.....HIP HOP NEWS BITS ADRIAN BRODY A lot of crazy stuff has been going on as of late.. This is definitely a situation where facts are stranger than fiction.. The first strange fact- Did anyone know that the 'Pianist' actor Adrian Brody is a Hip Hop producer. Yeah you read that right.. Homeboy who just won Best Actor goes by the name A. Ranger when's he's off screen... The word around town is he's actually pretty good. He even has a few cats considering to use his material... No wonder he stepped to Hallie Berry the way he did.. He had a 'Hip Hop I Don't Give A Damn attitude'... Well congrats on the win.. I guess Hip Hop really did come far.. Queen Latifah was nominated, Eminem won.. and A Ranger aka Adrian Brody got Best Actor.. Hip Hop forever.. --------------- SNOOP DOGG The second strange fact revolves Snoop Dogg... Now homeboy turned some heads when he released his last album which contains a song called 'Pimp Slapped'. Here Snoop sticks out his chest and unleashes a barage of unflattering remarks to his former label head Suge Knight. Now it seems like Snoop is about to get sued because he is accused of putting someone's voice on the song via an answering machine message without there consent or knowledge. The person who's voice Snoop used is asserting that he now fears for his life because Snoop made it appear that he was rolling with him on his beef with Suge Knight.. If this law suit goes through I guess It really will 'Cost to Be The Boss' -------------- HIP HOP GENERATION CONFERENCE Not a strange fact, but it's worth noting.. The annual Hip Hop Generation conference is set to kick off in Madison Wi, this April 11-13th.. Keynoting the even will be long time activist Dick Gregory.. I have abunch of Dick Gregory albums where he blast the administration for sending folks to Vietnam..It will be good to hear what he says to the Hip Hop audience..For more info check out the website.. www.hiphopgeneration.org We should note that there's another anti-war compilation album set to come out.. My man Nick form LA is in the process of putting things together.. He's still soliciting artists.. If anyone is interested in getting down.. Hit me up with an email and I'll pass along the info for Nick to get a hold of you... drop me a line at email@example.com Also Rev Run and Timbaland are in the process of putting together an anti-war song.. ------------------ CANIBUS 64 thousand dollar question : Didn't Canibus do a song called 'Draft Me' shortly after 9-11? Is he over there now fighting in Iraq or were his remarks strictly aimed at the Taliban and Osama? I hope he's not over there but if he is we wish him much luck.. and hope he stays in good health.. Does anyone know if actors Bruce Willis and Arnold Swartznegger have plans to go over and fight.. after all they basically said what Canibus said 'Draft Me'.? -------------------------- BIG PIMPING 101 DICK CHENEY'S IN THE HOUSE! Third strange fact around Vice President Dick Cheney.. Jay-Z , Dru Down and any one else who has adapted the title 'Pimp' or 'Mack of the Year' have to 'bow down' to Cheney. He's given new meaning to the phrase 'pimping the system'. Here's a guy who was the CEO of a company called Halliburton. He stepped down from his position so he could become George Bush's VP. Homeboy still gets a million dollars a year from this company in some sort of drawn out 'defered compensation' plan.. Well to make a long story short.. This company Cheney headed just got a half billion dollars to restructure Iraq's oil fields and set up electric grids after the war.. They presently have on lock, a 2 billion dollar contract to clean up and restructure things in Afghanistan...But Bush and his boys keep insisting this is about the LIBERATION of the IRAQI people and not about oil.. If that's not enough, a subsideray of his company has a huge hundred million dollar contract to do work in Turkey... Now that's what I call Big Pimping...Don't go blaming Jigga man and say he's corrupted the minds and undermined the values of young people.. Blame Tricky Dick Cheney our Vice President... Of course when he makes shady moves like that he's considered a shrewd and calculating BUSINESSMAN. It's a damn shame all this is going on.. Hopefully folks are paying attention...Oh yeah just for the record Cheney has some African American cousins who live out here in the Bay Area.. They been to the family gatherings and everything.. One of them used to work at the radio station.. From what I could gather he wasn't really hitting the Black side of his family off with any of those millions he's making from this war.. oops I mean from those 'shrewd business deals' his 'former' company is making. One thing that rings true are 2Pac's assertions.. they can find money for wars but no money to feed the poor.. Here in Oakland they can't find no money and are set to fire 1000 teachers.. heck, things are already bad enough... I guess the overall game plan is to let the kids fall so far behind that they have no choice but to join the army... Then they can be the front line foot soldiers that are deployed to any other country Bush and company want to issue stern warnings to... You can read the entire aryticle that breaks this down in great detail at www.daveyd.com/newsdickch...ofits.html Also be sure to peep this wonderful website called www.corpwatch.org Now is it just me but does every TV station in the country have a square jawed GI-Joe type white guy with some high ranking title like General or Captain consulting these news stations explaining the war.From Ny to LA to the Bay.. every local station I check out has the same type of guy trying to make this war sound like anoble and sanitized activity.. The only two folks I've seen out of that prototype was a light skinned brother and a woman when they do the Pentagon briefings.. Hollar at me folks.. maybe they got different experts consulting the TV stations in Mississippi or Arkansas. Did anyone catch Donald Rumsfield this morning.. Did I hear that man threaten to put a foot in the ass of several countries? He threatned Syria, Iran and someother place.. Oops let me correct myself.. He didn't threaten them.. He offered a 'stern warning'. And we don't 'kill people' we take 'strategic opportunities' All I know is we are living in some strange and troubling times.. --------- A REVISED APOLOGY FROM THE DIXIE CHICKS: Someone sent out a revised satirical Dixie Chicks apology.. I wish homegirl Natalie Maines had said this when she spoke.. It puts things in proper perspective...Here it is:...... As a concerned American citizen, I apologize to President Bush because my remark was disrespectful. I now realize that whoever holds that office should be treated with the utmost respect. I hope everyone understands, I'm just a young girl who grew up in Texas. As far back as I can remember, I heard people say they were ashamed of President Clinton. I saw bumper stickers calling him everything from a pothead to a murderer. I heard people on the radio and TV like Rush Limbaugh, Pat Robertson, Newt Gingrich and Trent Lott bad-mouthing the President, and ridiculing his wife and daughter at every opportunity. I heard LOTS of people disrespecting the President. So I guess I just assumed it was acceptable behavior. But now, thanks to the thousands of angry people who want radio stations to boycott our music because criticizing the President is unpatriotic, I realize it's wrong to have a liberal opinion if you're a country music artist. I guess I should have thought about that before deciding to play music that attracts hypocritical rednecks. I also realize now that I'm supposed to just sing and look cute so our fans won't have anything to upset them while they're cheating on their wive,s or getting in drunken bar fights, or driving around in their pickup trucks shooting highway signs and small animals. And most important of all, I realize that it's wrong for a celebrity to voice a political opinion, unless they're Charlie Daniels, Clint Black, Merle Haggard, Barbara Mandrell, Loretta Lynn, Ricky Skaggs, Travis Tritt, Hank Williams Jr, Amy Grant, Larry Gatlin, Crystal Gayle, Reba McEntire, Lee Greenwood, Lorrie Morgan, Anita Bryant, Mike Oldfield, Ted Nugent, Wayne Newton, Dick Clark, Jay Leno, Drew Carey, Dixie Carter, Victoria Jackson, Charleton Heston, Fred Thompson, Ben Stein, Bruce Willis, Kevin Costner, Arnold Schwartzenegger, Bo Derek, Rick Schroeder, George Will, Pat Buchanan, Bill O'Reilly, Joe Rogan, Delta Burke, Robert Conrad or Jesse Ventura. God Bless America, Natalie Now lets move on to Hip Hop... ================================ FBI TARGETING MICHAEL FRANTI & SPEARHEAD FOR PEACE SONG AND ANTI-WAR ACTIVITIES! Looks like its more than just the Dixie Chicks coming underfire for speaking out against the war... Bay Area Hip Hop artist Michael Franti and his group Spearhead while enjoying tremendous fan support are being surveilled by the FBI...Recently members of Michael Franti's band got some late night visits from the FBI who were concerned about his anti-war songs and activities. He explained whats been going the other day on the excellent radio show Democracy Now Here's a transcript of that interview courtesy of Democracy Now: www.democracynow.org/franti.htm. * * * * * * Hip Hop Artist Michael Franti Speaks Out on U.S. Government Surveillance of his Band and MTV Self-Censorship 'There's a lot of us who are now making a blip on the radarS [the government is] starting to pay attention and collect information' 'Our label received a letter, a mass e-mail from MTV instructing the fact that no videos could be shown that mentioned the word bombing or war.' NOTE: THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT DEMOCRACY NOW! March 27, 2003 Amy Goodman, Democracy Now! Host: For nearly a decade hip-hop artist and activist Michael Franti has been a leading progressive voice in music. He grew out of the Bay area music and political scene of the 90's and in 1986 he founded the drum and bass duo 'The Beatniks' paving the way for his next musical endeavor 'The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy'. His most recent musical project is the musical collective 'Spearhead' begun in 1994 and he's used his music to push social boundaries, speaks out against sexual violence, encourages his community to prevent the spread of HIV and has been very vocal in his opposition to war. And now it maybe the reason why the government is looking at him and his group Spearhead. Welcome to Democracy Now Michael. Michael Franti: Hi Amy. AMY GOODMAN: It's good to have you with us. Can you talk about what's been happening as you've been touring the country with songs like 'Bomb da World.' MICHAEL FRANTI: Well we've been touring for the last year and a half performing that song and everywhere we go it gets standing ovations, people begin to cry. People are just very grateful to hear any voice out there right now who are speaking in support of peace and human rights. AMY GOODMAN: What's happened as you've been on this tour? MICHAEL FRANTI: Well, what's happened most recently is that we performed at a rally on March 15th in San Francisco and the next day on the 16th that rally was out here mine who prefers to go unnamed, his mother received a visit from two plain clothes men from the military and this band member of mine has a sibling who is in the Gulf. And they came in and talked to her and said you have a child who's in the gulf and you have a child who's in this band Spearhead who's part of the 'resistance' in their words, and they had pictures of us performing the day before at the rally, they had pictures of us performing at some of our annual concerts that we put on that are in support of peace and human rights. They had his flight records for the past several months, they had the names of everybody who works in my office, our management office 'Guerilla Management'. They had his checking account records. They asked his mother a lot of questions about where he was, what he was doing in this place, why he was going here. They confiscated his sibling's CD collection that they had brought over to listen to while they were in the Gulf, and basically were intimidating she could talk to and which members of the press she should not speak to. And basically what this signals to me is that particulary singled out or under any investigation for any activity because all the activity that we do is very much above board and all the events where photos were taken out were all public things we were at. But what it does signal to me is that there's a lot of us who are now making a blip on the radar, you know, whether we're organizers at rallies, whether we're musicians, whether we're people who are speaking out, authors, writers, actors. And we're beginning to make little blips on the radar. They're starting to pay attention and collect information about what's going on. You know, more important to me or more important than me you know, being a part of that is the fact that our civil rights are being eroded across the board for every person. And for musicians in particular it's a really hard time. Last week our label received a letter, a mass e-mail from MTV instructing the fact that no videos could be shown that mentioned the word bombing or war. No videos could be shown that had protesters in it. Any footage from military gave a list of prior videos that could not be shown, yet MTV has aired videos that show troops saying goodbye to their loved ones and going off to war in a very heroic fashion and troops which are gonna be coming home traumatized, wounded and dead and then be treated and thrown onto the scrap heap of veterans, as we've seen veterans treated in this country. And at the Academy Awards, there were also letters and talk that went around saying not to speak out. Radio has put the word out not to air songs that are in opposition to the war and in support of peace. Meanwhile, our song 'Bomb Da World' which we just put out is now in heavy rotation on a top youth radio station in Australia and in Denmark and it's expected to get added to a lot of stations in other countries. AMY GOODMAN: A few days ago, Democracy Now! Correspondent Jeremy Scahill and I were at the Ani DiFranco concert at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center to talk about Democracy Now and the importance of independent media in a time of war, just before she went on. And Clear Channel, which owns New Jersey Performing Arts Center, runs that venue, told her no political information could be given out and threatened to close down the concert if there was any political speech. MICHAEL FRANTI: It's incredible, it's outrageous and I think it's something that we all need to be aware of and need to support the art, you know, whether it's music, whether it's films, whether it's dance performances or whatever, this is the last place, apart from Pacifica and a few other stations around the country, where these voices are being heard. AMY GOODMAN: And Clear Channel that runs 1,200 radio stations now, runs many of the big venues in this country for musicians. MICHAEL FRANTI: So it's important that we call these stations and demand that these voices be heard. Amy Goodman: Well Michael Franti, I want to thank you for being with us, as we go out with your voice, with 'Bomb Da World.' ----------------------- If you want to hear the song Bomb The World go to Franti's website.. www.stayhuman.org/index.htm If you wanna hear the Hip Hop remix go to my site.. I don't think Franti has put it up on his site yet.. www.daveyd.com/antiwarfra...eworld.mp3 ------------------------ What's ironic about all this is that not too long ago Franti came on our radio show and broke down the history of Marley and told how during his prime he was in the cross hairs of the FBI's and CIA's counter intelligence program [Cointelpro]. He spoke about how the power of music and its ability to shape public opinion and inspire people into action was something that governments all over the world have been aware of and feared. Marley's call for folks rise up and to love one another was seen as a threat because he had the potential to unite people who would want to bring about some fundamental changes within their government. Hence artist like him were monitored. The other thing Franti pointed out is that it was no mistake that Marley did not enjoy much urban [Black radio play] which is something that he desperately wanted. There's always been an attempt to separate artist with compelling messages from the masses of the people who they desire to reach. One thing about Franti is that everywhere he plays he attracts huge crowds. And despite having slamming Hip Hop songs that address societal ills like the prison industrial complex, HIV/AIDs and Media Control, he gets no urban radio play. This is inspite the fact that he played on the Smoking Grooves Tour. This is despite the fact that he has had remixes of some of his popular songs done by the Fugees. This is despite the fact that he has had in group dope underground Hip Hop artists like Azeem and RadioActive. This is inspite the fact that the free concerts that he pays for and annual puts on has not only attracted 20 thousand plus crowds but have also included Digital Underground, Talib Kweli, The Coup, Mystic and KRS-One on the bill. His new song Bomb The World remix features Bay Area soul singer Ledisi and Beatbox artist Radioactive. The Hip Hop/reggea track was freaked out by Sly and Robbie. The song is absolutely incredible and is perhaps one of the best anti-war songs to come out to date. Its doesn't advocate violence. It's a call for peace and could easily be a song that Bob Marley would've done. Interestingly, the song first raised eyebrows when he performed it on the Craig Kilborne show shortly after 9-11. The producers were enraged that Franti did the song and censored it from their broadcast. Several months later they went ahead and played the performance. We'll keep you posted on the outcome of all this.. =============================== CONGRESS WANTS TO SEND MUSIC DOWNLOADERS TO JAIL Congressman Wants To Jail Student Music Downloaders. by antiGUY 03-23-03 www.antimusic.com/news/03...em33.shtml musicNEWS: It appears that the RIAA and MPAA have found yet another friend in the federal government of the United States. Wired.com reports that during a recent hearing of the Subcommittee on Courts, the Internet and Intellectual Property, congressman John Carter (Rep Tx) said that jailing college students who download copyrighted material would help stop piracy. This news comes on the heals of a story that we reported on February "Download An MP3, Go To Jail For 3 Years. " (see story)www.antimusic.com/news/03...tem6.shtml where we reported that lawmakers and the Justice Department were apparently planning to utilize a little known law called the "No Electronic Theft (NET) Act," to begin procecuting file traders. That law was passed by Congress and signed by Bill Clinton in 1997 with very little notice from the media. But last July, 19 members of Congress wrote a letter to Attorney General John Ashcroft urging him to "to prosecute individuals who intentionally allow mass copying from their computer over peer-to-peer networks." Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Del., Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif were among the 19 politicians urging the Attorney General to start taking action against online file swappers due to their concern over the "staggering increase in the amount of intellectual property pirated over the Internet through peer-to-peer systems." Now according to the Wired.com story congressman John Carter is ready to move forward with plans to jail student file swappers using the law. "What these kids don't realize is that every time they pull up music and movies and make a copy, they are committing a felony under the United States code," Carter said in an interview. "If you were to prosecute someone and give them three years, I think this would act as a deterrent." Click here to read the full Wired.com story. www.wired.com/news/busine...81,00.html courtesy of Mass Mic News 3/23/03 ============================================= KILLERS ON THE PAYROLL By Paris, March 21, 2003 Well, here we are. Bombs are dropping, the dying has started, and our country of ignorant, blind allegiance-pledging sheep has sanctioned yet another massacre for profit in the name of "liberating the oppressed." Never mind the fact that millions of people spoke out against our non-elected Commander-in-Chief's hell-bent course of action, or that Chief Weapons Inspector Hans Blix and Ex-Marine and former UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter stated repeatedly that weapons of mass destruction didn't exist and that more time was needed, or that the report of supposed proof of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction presented by Colin Powell to the U.N. was plagiarized, or that of the 535 members of Congress, only one (Sen. Johnson of South Dakota) has an enlisted son or daughter in the armed forces, or that GOP-contributors the Bechtel Group Inc., Fluor Corp., Halliburton Co. subsidiary Kellogg, Brown & Root, Louis Berger Group Inc., and Parsons Corp have all been asked to submit bids for the rebuilding of Iraq's infrastructure, again sadly proving the argument that this is indeed a slaughter for profit. Never mind these facts, no. Never mind the fact the the Hallibuton Corporation, of which our Vice-President was once CEO, has been awarded a contract to oversee firefighting operations in Iraqi oilfields, and will probably be instrumental in the rebuilding effort, just as it was in the Gulf War after we bombed Iraq in 1991, to the tune of $23.8 million dollars. This will probably be lost on my fellow Americans. It certainly has been lost on our conservative -bending Bush-complicit media. I can almost hear the conservatives now. "Where were you when Clinton bombed Bosnia...blah, blah, blah..." Is this the best they can do? That's a moot point at this juncture. People are dying in a war that is unjust and the media has simply sat on it's collective hands. Where's the independent investigation into 9-11? Gone forever, I suppose. This is now more relevant then ever because the entire chain of events which have transpired since 9-11 (the reduction of civil liberties, rampant profiteering and the demonization and imperialist invasions of lessor-developed countries) have occurred because of 9-11. How come I can find all this information from credible sources online but they can't? Because they don't want you to know, that's why. I'm sure some of them will say, "what's a rapper doing commenting on politics...blah, blah blah..." completely overlooking the fact that I, too, am educated, and that they, in their arrogance and inherent racism, don't have the market cornered on analytical thought. What makes these talking heads more qualified than me to speak out? Nothing. Understand that today's supposed "news" is totally under the control of the Pentagon. We never see actual war footage - babies dying, families slaughtered - just blips and far-away night vision shots. The dehumanizing effect of all of this is that we are desensitized to the atrocities of war. For most Americans, it is a temporary inconvenience that we hope will be resolved quickly. A video game...cool! We can't relate to the horrors of war because we've never been attacked here. Remember most of the war hawks have never served in the armed services and most of the doves have. So now we are faced with the paradox of wanting our soldiers--young men and women who risk too much for too little pay--to come home in one piece. But supporting our troops while they're fighting an immoral and illegal war is misguided and wrong. Members of our armed forces don't deserve insults, but their role in this war doesn't merit support either. Cheering them as they leave and holding parades when they return would certainly be misinterpreted by citizens of other countries as popular support for an inglorious enterprise--and it would make it easier for Bush to send them off again, to Iran or Libya or wherever. Iraq has never attacked, nor threatened to attack, the United States. As his 1990 invasion of Kuwait proved, Saddam is a menace to his neighbors--Saudi Arabia, Iran, Israel--but he's their problem, not ours. Saddam's longest-range missiles only travel 400 miles. Why Iraq? Why not North Korea, who has an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of hitting the western United States and nuclear capability? Why not Pakistan, who just unveiled its new HATF-4 ballistic missile? I'm not calling for us to ride on these countries too, don't get me wrong. But if disarmament were Bush's goal, shouldn't those countries--both of which have threatened to use nukes--be higher-priority targets than non-nuclear Iraq? Iraq isn't part of the war on terrorism. The only link between Iraq and Al Qaeda is the fact that they hate each other's guts. And no matter how often Bush says "9/11" and "Iraq" in the same breath, Saddam had nothing to do with the terror attacks. That leaves freeing Iraqis from Saddam's repressive rule as the sole rationale for war. Is the U.S. in the liberation business? Will Bush spread democracy to the numerous other places where people can't vote, speak freely or eat much? You be the judge. I wouldn't bet on it. Of course, it would be great if Iraqis were to overthrow Saddam (assuming that his successor would be an improvement). But regime change is up to the locals, not us. George W. Bush has led us to commit an abhorrent crime, an internationally-unsanctioned invasion of a nation that has done us no harm and presents no imminent threat. We have killers on the payroll in the White House. ================================= PARIS'S 10 THINGS YOU CAN DO TO END WAR Ten Thing You Can Do To Stop The War On Iraq 1. Call or Fax the White House or the United Nations Security Council to express your opposition to an invasion of Iraq. The United States Congress has voted for going to war with Iraq - failing in its duty to represent a deeply divided American public. But there are still ways to stop this invasion. Contact the White House at 202-456-1111 (tel) or 202-456-2461 (fax). Appeal to the members of the UN Security Council to do everything in their power to stop this war now! You can fax them directly from the Global Exchange website with one click of your mouse. 2. Join the national mobilization to stop the war on Iraq by organizing an anti-war event (a rally, march, vigil, teach-in, or other action) in your community. Make sure to list your event on the website www.unitedforpeace.org. UnitedforPeace also has plenty of exciting action ideas and tips. 3. Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper saying why you oppose the war on Iraq. Your letter should be from one to three paragraphs long. Possible points to make include: the Administration has not presented an adequate justification for going to war; Iraq does not pose a clear and present danger to the US; and an invasion of Iraq would violate international law. You can find out where to send your letters by looking on the letters to the editor page of your local newspaper. 4. Email a friend and ask them to join you in opposing the war. Send this list of things you can do to stop the war to a friend along with a copy of Global Exchange's Top Ten Reasons Why the US Should Not Invade Iraq, available online at www.globalexchange.org. 5. Distribute flyers about why people should stop this war now. Good, heavily trafficked locations include bus stops, subway stations, grocery stores, college campuses, libraries, and churches, among other sites. 6. Organize a weekly vigil against the war at the US federal building in your city, at the office of a Congressperson who supports the war, or at another public place. 7. Call a press conference where local community leaders, religious leaders, veterans, politicians, and others can speak out against the war. Once you have some community leaders who are willing to speak out against the war, determine the time and location of the press conference, send a press release to local media outlets, and then follow up with a phone call to tell editors and reporters what you're doing. 8. Educate yourself about Iraq and the US accusations against Saddam Hussein so you can discuss the issue with friends, family, and even strangers. We won't be able to stop this war if we can't convince people who don't agree with us to come over to our position. Websites that have good information include www.zmag.org, www.thenation.com, www.commondreams.org, www.alternet.org, www.pacificnews.org and www.endthewar.org. 9. Place a "No War on Iraq" banner in a prominent public place. Even if the banner is taken down within a few hours, people will see it while it's up, and they will realize that the opposition to this war is growing. You can hang banners from freeway overpasses and out the windows of buildings in downtown areas. It's easy to make a banner: just use paint or markers on a white sheet. 10. Connect with the local peace group in your community. They will undoubtedly have other ideas for how you can work to stop the war. Some peace groups that have chapters in many cities and towns include Peace Action and the American Friends Service Committee. You can also look at the events section on the United for Peace website, and see what groups are sponsoring events in your community. Or join Global Exchange's moderated email listserve by sending a message here.
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