Monday, September 29, 2008


The anti-immigrant, extreme right party in Austria made gigantic gains in Sunday's parlimentary elections.

Anti-Roma, anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant sentiments have been powerful and growing in Europe recently and this victory of the far right Freedom Party and the Alliance for Austria's Future is terrifying. Immigrants are being blamed for all the economic woes in Austria and throughout Europe.


I wish I understood economics more. All I know at the moment is that I am really happy that the Bush administration's bail out proposal was defeated.
A good article appeared in today's Seattle Times, written by Sirota. His webpage address is Check it out.


--- On Mon, 9/29/08, Morgan Ahern <> wrote:
From: Morgan Ahern <>
Date: Monday, September 29, 2008, 11:12 AM


From: on behalf of ERIO News
Sent: Mon 9/29/2008 10:37 AM




Brussels, September 29th, 2008 – The European Roma Information Office (ERIO) welcomes the Equality Summit in Paris, initiated by the French Presidency of the European Union. The event provides the perfect opportunity to a large number of civil society representatives to gather with high level politicians and decision-makers for two days (Monday 29th and Tuesday 30th) to have a dialogue and discussion.


It is building up on such initiatives that Europe's civil society movement could improve its action to defend the rights to equal treatment and non-discrimination in all the 27 EU countries. Since respect of equality is a Europe-wide issue, we need a European civil society joint action in order to promote broadly the principle of equal treatment and raise awareness among citizens about its importance in a European Union that wants to respect its own values.


On the other hand, we don't have to applaud blindly the efforts of these high-profile initiatives such this one, because the French Presidency and all its European partners are not always the best example in promoting equal opportunities, non-discrimination and social inclusion.


Thursday September 25th, the European Council of Ministers approved the Immigration Pact, an agreement that will tighten up the access of a huge number of poor, desperate and endangered people to the EU countries, including Roma from the Western Balkans. Asylum seekers and migrants will have more difficult life: European governments will consider them not as potential citizens or people in need but only as a good source of cheap labour. Migrants' families will have more problems in reunification and their quest for a better life will be jeopardized by insurmountable red-tapes. These problems will be particularly harming for Roma from the Western Balkans, who already suffer difficult life conditions in countries like Italy, where they took shelter from the wars in the '90s in the former Yugoslavia block .


This attitude will create a Europe with first- and second-class citizens, where only skilled workers from outside Europe could find their place, leaving thousands of others without any hope. This approach bears very little in the sense of equality.


Roma and all socially deprived and excluded people alike need a more open and constructive approach. We hope that the Equality summit will give to the European non-discrimination movement a good momentum to build up a stronger advocacy for effective implementation of equal opportunity policies, at the same time to counter the sometimes populist and discriminating policies of the European governments.


Ivan Ivanov, ERIO's executive Director stated: "Roma should get the most benefits from the anti-discrimination legislation, because they are the more discriminated and excluded ethnic group in Europe. For this same reason, Roma activists and organisations could and should be the driving force in the EU Equality Agenda. Finally, we have to remember that the final objective of our and policy-makers activity shall be the full social inclusion of discriminated groups as Roma, whose anti-discrimination rights are only the first step of their full citizenship status".


For more inquiries contact ERIO's Executive Director, Ivan Ivanov: +32 473 823887


The European Roma Information Office (ERIO) is an international advocacy organization, which promotes political and public discussion on Roma issues by providing factual and in-dept information on a range of policy issues to the European Union institutions, Roma civil organizations, governmental authorities and intergovernmental bodies.
The ERIO cooperates with a network of a large number of organizations and acts to combat racial discrimination and social exclusion through awareness raising, lobbying and policy development.
Ave. Edouard Lacomble 17
Brussels 1040
Tel:      0032(0)27333462                      
Fax:     0032(0)27333875      
For more information:

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Friday, September 26, 2008


Would someone please define for me what exactly is meant by Victory in Iraq.
I ask this question after watching the presidential debate.


The Czech Government said today that they are now opening potential adoptions of Gypsy children in orphanages to people outside of the Czech Republic. This decision was made after a study showing that Gypsy children ARE NEVER ADOPTED by Czech citizens. It's amazing they needed a study to show them that fact.

The interesting thing about todays news release is that it states that Italians are among those non-Czechs interested in adopting Gypsy children. That statement is mind numbing considering the treatment of Gypsies (and Gypsy children) in Italy. Does anyone remember the 2 dead Gypsy girls on the Italian beach. The fingerprinting of all Roma in Italy continues.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Sept 24, 1869----Thousands of businesses were ruined in a Wall Street panic known as "Black Friday" after millionaires Jay Gould and James Frick attempted to corner the gold market. This is the same James Frick who survived an assassination attempt by Alexander Berkman, the reknowned Anarchist and lover of Emma Goldman.

Fwd: The Power of negative thinking

--- On Thu, 9/25/08, Tova Stabin <> wrote:
From: ;
Subject: Fwd: The Power of negative thinking
Date: Thursday, September 25, 2008, 7:43 AM

tova stabin

"Your silence will not protect you." - Audre Lorde

Begin forwarded message:

International Herald Tribune
The power of negative thinking
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Greed - and its crafty sibling, speculation - are the designated culprits for the financial crisis. But another, much admired, habit of mind should get its share of the blame: the delusional optimism of mainstream, all-American, positive thinking.
As promoted by Oprah Winfrey, scores of megachurch pastors and an endless flow of self-help best sellers, the idea is to firmly believe that you will get what you want, not only because it will make you feel better to do so, but because "visualizing" something - ardently and with concentration - actually makes it happen.
You will be able to pay that adjustable-rate mortgage or, at the other end of the transaction, turn thousands of bad mortgages into giga-profits if only you believe that you can.
Positive thinking is endemic to American culture - from weight loss programs to cancer support groups - and in the last two decades it has put down deep roots in the corporate world as well. Everyone knows that you won't get a job paying more than $15 an hour unless you're a "positive person," and no one becomes a chief executive by issuing warnings of possible disaster.
The tomes in airport bookstores' business sections warn against "negativity" and advise the reader to be at all times upbeat, optimistic, brimming with confidence. It's a message companies relentlessly reinforced - treating their white-collar employees to manic motivational speakers and revival-like motivational events, while sending the top guys off to exotic locales to get pumped by the likes of Tony Robbins and other success gurus. Those who failed to get with the program would be subjected to personal "coaching" or shown the door.
The once-sober finance industry was not immune. On their Web sites, motivational speakers proudly list companies like Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch among their clients. What's more, for those at the very top of the corporate hierarchy, all this positive thinking must not have seemed delusional at all. With the rise in executive compensation, bosses could have almost anything they wanted, just by expressing the desire. No one was psychologically prepared for hard times when they hit, because, according to the tenets of positive thinking, even to think of trouble is to bring it on.
Americans did not start out as deluded optimists. The original ethos, at least of white Protestant settlers and their descendants, was a grim Calvinism that offered wealth only through hard work and savings, and even then made no promises at all. You might work hard and still fail; you certainly wouldn't get anywhere by adjusting your attitude or dreamily "visualizing" success.
Calvinists thought "negatively," as we would say today, carrying a weight of guilt and foreboding that sometimes broke their spirits. It was in response to this harsh attitude that positive thinking arose - among mystics, lay healers and transcendentalists - in the 19th century, with its crowd-pleasing message that God, or the universe, is really on your side, that you can actually have whatever you want, if the wanting is focused enough.
When it comes to how we think, "negative" is not the only alternative to "positive." As the case histories of depressives show, consistent pessimism can be just as baseless and deluded as its opposite. The alternative to both is realism - seeing the risks, having the courage to bear bad news and being prepared for famine as well as plenty. We Americans ought to give it a try.
Barbara Ehrenreich is the author, most recently, of "This Land Is Their Land: Reports From a Divided Nation."

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


From a message from IMPEACH BUSH:

Five members of Veterans for Peace are occupying a 35 foot high ledge at the National Archive Building.

They have raised a large banner reading :


For more information, see


I really wish I had more of a grasp on economics. I do know that I have a bad feeling about this "buy out". We should nationalize the oil industry instead.

Remember the scandal last week about the employees of the Interior Department office in Denver ? The very employees responsible for collecting fees from energy companies drilling on federal land have been caught in various outrageous examples of official misconduct, including sex, drugs and partying with representatives of ENERGY COMPANIES.
As the editorial in the Seattle Times says
"....In the midst of an epic financial crisis hemorrhaging money from the US Treasury, the new scandal raises questions about the collection of oil and gas royalties owed to the government...."

Also in today's news, the Environmental Protection Agency (yeah sure) announced that there is no need to rid drinking water of perchlorate, a toxic rocket fuel that has been found in at least 395 sites in 35 states. The levels found are high enough to interfere with thyroid function and pose serious developmental risks in babies and fetuses.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

M. Ahern has sent you an email

This is a good article from Aljazeera News.
It addresses the rise of the ultra right in Hungary. The xenophobic right is on the rise throughout Europe, east and west.
The particular incident reported in this article concerns an attack on participants at a conference on Rroma rights.

Al Jazeera.Net

M. AHERN () wants you to see following article

Protesters fight Hungarian police

( )

Also he/she attached you the following message:

Saturday, September 20, 2008


I read a headline in the Seattle Times the other day.


I love misplaced modifiers. They so often speak the truth.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


Martin Sobell, who was tried and convicted of espionage with the Rosenbergs in 1953, has recently admitted that he was a spy, but he only worked with Julius Rosenberg and the Greenglasses, Ethel's brother and sister in law. This admission bolstered the long held theory that while Julius did send information to the Soviet Union (who were our allies at the time), Ethel was completely innocent.
Even prosecuting Ethel, the mother of two small children was indicted as a ploy to get Julius to confess. Ethel, however, called their bluff and refused to testify against her husband. In 1953 she was electrocuted by the United States government.
The recent release of grand jury testimony from the trial never mentioned Ethel typing the notes for Julius, which was the main allegation which led to her conviction and state sanctioned murder.

In other news, Ed Koch, the previous ultra conservative mayor of New York City has said he will vote for Obama because he is terrified by the Republican ticket. He said that Sarah Palin is totally scary, especially in how she encourages and fosters cultural strife. hi ho.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


This article "EU's_first_'Roma_summit'_draws_crowds_and_controversy" was sent from M. Ahern:
With the message:

===================== About EurActiv =====================

* Subscribe to EurActiv's free Update Email
policy newsletters:

* For feedback or questions:

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Forwarded from Thousands lead invisible life in Italy

M. Ahern () has sent the following story to you
Thousands lead invisible life in Italy
ROME -- They speak Italian, eat Italian and cheer for Italy's
soccer stars, but they are not Italian. In fact, it's hard to
say what they are.
* Read the full article at:

Friday, September 12, 2008


I wish that Rosanne Rosannadanna was here to do an interview with Sarah Palin.

"Princess Sarah, Princess Sarah, you have toilet paper stuck to your "red, peep-toe Naughty Monkey pumps with 3 1/2 inch heels".

J'ai lu un article très intéressant sur le site de ayant pour titre « Hindus want emergence of concrete roadmap for social inclusion of Roma in Tuesday's "EU Roma Summit" ». Il suffit de cliquer sur le lien suivant pour le lire :


Envoyé par M. Ahern
Courriel :

Thursday, September 11, 2008



Oh where to start. It's been a few days since I made an entry and things are hopping. So here we go.

Sept. 9Th was the anniversary of the 1971 uprising at Attica State Penitentiary in New York. 43 people, mostly prisoners were killed before it was over.

Sept. 11Th (1973)is the anniversary of the violent overthrow, with US backing, of the leftist government of Salvador Allende of Chile.
In related news, the president of Bolivia, Evo Morales, has expelled the United States ambassador for inciting violence.

Jim McDermott has signed on to impeach George W. Bush. Better late than never Jim.

Gloria Steinem has written a good article on Sarah Palin. It's in the LA Times on 9/4/08. I hope you can look it up. I just couldn't get the link to work.

In Seattle, police have started carrying tiny cameras which can videotape for 4 hours at a time. They've already been seen filming demonstrators with their little cameras. Am I the only one outraged ?

The European Union has decreed that Italy is NOT violating anyone's rights by systematically fingerprinting the Sinti Roma. Meanwhile, a Romani news crew was denied entrance to Camp Castillano, the oldest and most notorious of the "camps" for Roma in Italy

Yesterday I heard a wonderful interview on KUOW/NPR with a philosopher from Slovenia named Slavoj Zizek. He's written over 30 books, the latest called VIOLENCE.
He talked about many things dear to my heart including
that Americans recognize physical violence but ignore institutional and ideological violence. We try to fix immediate problems, like hunger here, starvation in Africa, but refuse to address the underlying philosophies which cause them.
My favorite part was when he talked about liberal philanthropists, like Bill Gates, and even George Soros, who does a lot for Roma in Europe. They give away lots of money but first accumulated it by any means necessary.
He even addressed the issue of "tolerance" (gag me) but I'll write more on that later.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Here's another very good article, despite the title--tolerance.

J'ai lu un article très intéressant sur le site de ayant pour titre « "Treat Roma people with respect", Indo-American leader urges Italy and Europe ». Il suffit de cliquer sur le lien suivant pour le lire :


Envoyé par M. Ahern
Courriel :

Monday, September 8, 2008


Astroland Park, Coney Island Brooklyn is closing for good this Saturday night. The park has been owned by the same family for over forty years.

The 3 acre site was bought by Thor Equities, a private developer. Rumor has it that condos are being planned on the prime beach fromt property. I guess the property has been wasted on the commoners all these years.

I'm really confused about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mack. I just keep thinking that if Hugo Chavez had 'taken over' an equivalent institution, the US would be calling him all sorts of unsavory names. Deja vu.

These topics do tie in together.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


This is a very good article. It's long but provides good background as well as current events.

--- On Sun, 9/7/08, <> wrote:
From: M. Ahern <>
Date: Sunday, September 7, 2008, 9:03 AM

J'ai lu un article très intéressant sur le site de ayant pour titre « Italy: The Persecution of the Roma People ». Il suffit de cliquer sur le lien suivant pour le lire :


Envoyé par M. Ahern
Courriel :

Friday, September 5, 2008


I just heard an interview with Amy Goodman of Democracy Now about her arrest at the Republican National Convention. Fortunately, there is a video of Amy's interaction with the storm troopers, oops, I mean the police. It is vital that all charges against Goodman and her crew be dropped. But besides that, it is very important that we confront the actions of the police in Minnesota and Denver about the treatment of opposition demonstrators. Charges do need to be filed, but against the police rather than demonstrators or observers.
I already said that the Republican convention reminded me of "Triumph of the Will" the Nazi propaganda film made by Leni Riefenstahl. And the beat goes on.....

And while I feel bad for Sarah Palin's teenage daughter and appreciate her need for privacy, I also find it interesting that Sarah Palin would deny the rights of any woman seeking an abortion, REGARDLESS OF THE REASON.

And, I was happy to read that community organizers across the country are outraged by Sarah Palin's insults to the vital work they do. Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton were community organizers. Martin Luther King Jr was a community organizer. Shall I go on listing community organizers.

The European Union has announced that Italy's policy of fingerprinting Roma/Sinti does not violate European Union's criteria for human rights. What a surprise.....NOT.
Years ago the European Union said that one criteria for a country joining the Union was their treatment of Roma. They said that Roma should be treated with the same respect with which they are treated in original Union countries. The only trouble with this criteria is that Roma are treated terribly in ALL EUROPEAN COUNTRIES from England to Italy.
What is surprising is that the Vatican is supporting the rights of Sinti/Roma and still condemning the policies of the Berlusconi government.

In my final news of the day, we are making another effort to convince the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum to return Dina Babbitt's watercolor paintings of the Roma in Auschwitz. For more information on this case see previous entries on this blog or google Dina Babbitt.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


The word is that Margaret Thatcher suffers from dementia.

I fail to see how that is news as many of us knew that in the 1980's, especially when she let Bobby Sands (and others) starve to death.


On the first night of the Republican convention and again tonight, on the last night, the 'two little brown babies rescued from a Mother Theresa orphanage in Bangladesh' were exploited on national tv.

Did I already say "gag me with Rudyard Kipling and the white man's burden" ?

BBC E-mail: Grappling with a Roma identity

This is a good article from the BBC. I'm anxious to see this movie.

M. Ahern saw this story on the BBC News website and thought you
should see it.

** Grappling with a Roma identity **
The BBC World News series Life on the Edge meets a film director in Hungary who is in a dilemma about his Roma roots.
< >

** BBC Daily E-mail **
Choose the news and sport headlines you want - when you want them, all
in one daily e-mail
< >


Wednesday, September 3, 2008


I watched the Republican convention tonight and I am totally unnerved by the experience. I don't recall hearing a right wing diatribe like the one Mitt Romney delivered. David Duke excluded.

The whole experience reminded me of Leni Reifenstahl's movie Triumph of the Will which was a documentary of the Nazi Party.

I'm scared actually.


Roma and Travelers in England held an awareness fair in a small town outside of London. They displayed traditional arts and crafts including the wooden PEG, which is a clothespin invented generations ago by the Roma.

Anyone older than clothes dryers knows the sociological and practical importance of the clothespin. And you thought all we did was dance. Ha.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


Aung San Suu Kyi of Burma is reportedly losing weight at an alarming rate. The military government, which has held her prisoner for many years, is denying that she is on a hunger strike.

250 people were arrested after an anti war march by the Republican convention,including Amy Goodman of Democracy Now.

And I've been watching the republican convention. Gag me with Rudyard Kipling. One of the first scenes/speeches was about Cindy McCain "saving" 2 babies of color from a Mother Theresa orphanage. The McCains adopted one girl, and their (white) friend adopted the other.
Both girls, now 17, appeared with their adoptive parent, one actually at the podium. Not a word was heard from either girl. They just grinned adoringly.