Sunday, September 28, 2008

and on a different note... LUMBIA!

despite all that is happening politically, some joys in life still occur...

before i went to work yesterday i gave lumbia a 'lil 'ol flea bath (i mean, she was INFESTED, and as she is allergic to fleas, she was losing some hair)... when she saw the water approaching, she attempted to run for her life, holding onto the sink with some force (don't stop, don't stop till she gets enough)... flea infestations have been really strong this year, and despite her being an indoor cat she was suffering... i have been trying to find ways to help her without harmful chemicals, and it's not been easy... i've been giving her things, to no avail... and yes, nutritional yeast does help A LITTLE BIT...

but, onto the bath... she was really sweet... even though she was scared and panting (as cats do when they are scared), she calmed down a bit, and even let me give her nose-to-nose kisses... lumbia... such a wonderful person to have in my life...

this is the letter...

to which the senator was referring:

To the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate:

As economists, we want to express to Congress our great concern for the plan proposed by Treasury Secretary Paulson to deal with the financial crisis. We are well aware of the difficulty of the current financial situation and we agree with the need for bold action to ensure that the financial system continues to function. We see three fatal pitfalls in the currently proposed plan:

1) Its fairness. The plan is a subsidy to investors at taxpayers’ expense. Investors who took risks to earn profits must also bear the losses. Not every business failure carries systemic risk. The government can ensure a well-functioning financial industry, able to make new loans to creditworthy borrowers, without bailing out particular investors and institutions whose choices proved unwise.

2) Its ambiguity. Neither the mission of the new agency nor its oversight are clear. If taxpayers are to buy illiquid and opaque assets from troubled sellers, the terms, occasions, and methods of such purchases must be crystal clear ahead of time and carefully monitored afterwards.

3) Its long-term effects. If the plan is enacted, its effects will be with us for a generation. For all their recent troubles, America's dynamic and innovative private capital markets have brought the nation unparalleled prosperity. Fundamentally weakening those markets in order to calm short-run disruptions is desperately short-sighted.

For these reasons we ask Congress not to rush, to hold appropriate hearings, and to carefully consider the right course of action, and to wisely determine the future of the financial industry and the U.S. economy for years to come.

Signed (updated at 9/25/2008 8:30AM CT)

Acemoglu Daron (Massachussets Institute of Technology)
Adler Michael (Columbia University)
Admati Anat R. (Stanford University)
Alexis Marcus (Northwestern University)
Alvarez Fernando (University of Chicago)
Andersen Torben (Northwestern University)
Baliga Sandeep (Northwestern University)
Banerjee Abhijit V. (Massachussets Institute of Technology)
Barankay Iwan (University of Pennsylvania)
Barry Brian (University of Chicago)
Bartkus James R. (Xavier University of Louisiana)
Becker Charles M. (Duke University)
Becker Robert A. (Indiana University)
Beim David (Columbia University)
Berk Jonathan (Stanford University)
Bisin Alberto (New York University)
Bittlingmayer George (University of Kansas)
Boldrin Michele (Washington University)
Brooks Taggert J. (University of Wisconsin)
Brynjolfsson Erik (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Buera Francisco J. (UCLA)
Camp Mary Elizabeth (Indiana University)
Carmel Jonathan (University of Michigan)
Carroll Christopher (Johns Hopkins University)
Cassar Gavin (University of Pennsylvania)
Chaney Thomas (University of Chicago)
Chari Varadarajan V. (University of Minnesota)
Chauvin Keith W. (University of Kansas)
Chintagunta Pradeep K. (University of Chicago)
Christiano Lawrence J. (Northwestern University)
Cochrane John (University of Chicago)
Coleman John (Duke University)
Constantinides George M. (University of Chicago)
Crain Robert (UC Berkeley)
Culp Christopher (University of Chicago)
Da Zhi (University of Notre Dame)
Davis Morris (University of Wisconsin)
De Marzo Peter (Stanford University)
Dubé Jean-Pierre H. (University of Chicago)
Edlin Aaron (UC Berkeley)
Eichenbaum Martin (Northwestern University)
Ely Jeffrey (Northwestern University)
Eraslan Hülya K. K.(Johns Hopkins University)
Faulhaber Gerald (University of Pennsylvania)
Feldmann Sven (University of Melbourne)
Fernandez-Villaverde Jesus (University of Pennsylvania)
Fohlin Caroline (Johns Hopkins University)
Fox Jeremy T. (University of Chicago)
Frank Murray Z.(University of Minnesota)
Frenzen Jonathan (University of Chicago)
Fuchs William (University of Chicago)
Fudenberg Drew (Harvard University)
Gabaix Xavier (New York University)
Gao Paul (Notre Dame University)
Garicano Luis (University of Chicago)
Gerakos Joseph J. (University of Chicago)
Gibbs Michael (University of Chicago)
Glomm Gerhard (Indiana University)
Goettler Ron (University of Chicago)
Goldin Claudia (Harvard University)
Gordon Robert J. (Northwestern University)
Greenstone Michael (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Guadalupe Maria (Columbia University)
Guerrieri Veronica (University of Chicago)
Hagerty Kathleen (Northwestern University)
Hamada Robert S. (University of Chicago)
Hansen Lars (University of Chicago)
Harris Milton (University of Chicago)
Hart Oliver (Harvard University)
Hazlett Thomas W. (George Mason University)
Heaton John (University of Chicago)
Heckman James (University of Chicago - Nobel Laureate)
Henderson David R. (Hoover Institution)
Henisz, Witold (University of Pennsylvania)
Hertzberg Andrew (Columbia University)
Hite Gailen (Columbia University)
Hitsch Günter J. (University of Chicago)
Hodrick Robert J. (Columbia University)
Hopenhayn Hugo (UCLA)
Hurst Erik (University of Chicago)
Imrohoroglu Ayse (University of Southern California)
Isakson Hans (University of Northern Iowa)
Israel Ronen (London Business School)
Jaffee Dwight M. (UC Berkeley)
Jagannathan Ravi (Northwestern University)
Jenter Dirk (Stanford University)
Jones Charles M. (Columbia Business School)
Kaboski Joseph P. (Ohio State University)
Kahn Matthew (UCLA)
Kaplan Ethan (Stockholm University)
Karolyi, Andrew (Ohio State University)
Kashyap Anil (University of Chicago)
Keim Donald B (University of Pennsylvania)
Ketkar Suhas L (Vanderbilt University)
Kiesling Lynne (Northwestern University)
Klenow Pete (Stanford University)
Koch Paul (University of Kansas)
Kocherlakota Narayana (University of Minnesota)
Koijen Ralph S.J. (University of Chicago)
Kondo Jiro (Northwestern University)
Korteweg Arthur (Stanford University)
Kortum Samuel (University of Chicago)
Krueger Dirk (University of Pennsylvania)
Ledesma Patricia (Northwestern University)
Lee Lung-fei (Ohio State University)
Leeper Eric M. (Indiana University)
Leuz Christian (University of Chicago)
Levine David I.(UC Berkeley)
Levine David K.(Washington University)
Levy David M. (George Mason University)
Linnainmaa Juhani (University of Chicago)
Lott John R. Jr. (University of Maryland)
Lucas Robert (University of Chicago - Nobel Laureate)
Luttmer Erzo G.J. (University of Minnesota)
Manski Charles F. (Northwestern University)
Martin Ian (Stanford University)
Mayer Christopher (Columbia University)
Mazzeo Michael (Northwestern University)
McDonald Robert (Northwestern University)
Meadow Scott F. (University of Chicago)
Mehra Rajnish (UC Santa Barbara)
Mian Atif (University of Chicago)
Middlebrook Art (University of Chicago)
Miguel Edward (UC Berkeley)
Miravete Eugenio J. (University of Texas at Austin)
Miron Jeffrey (Harvard University)
Moretti Enrico (UC Berkeley)
Moriguchi Chiaki (Northwestern University)
Moro Andrea (Vanderbilt University)
Morse Adair (University of Chicago)
Mortensen Dale T. (Northwestern University)
Mortimer Julie Holland (Harvard University)
Muralidharan Karthik (UC San Diego)
Nanda Dhananjay (University of Miami)
Nevo Aviv (Northwestern University)
Ohanian Lee (UCLA)
Pagliari Joseph (University of Chicago)
Papanikolaou Dimitris (Northwestern University)
Parker Jonathan (Northwestern University)
Paul Evans (Ohio State University)
Pejovich Svetozar (Steve) (Texas A&M University)
Peltzman Sam (University of Chicago)
Perri Fabrizio (University of Minnesota)
Phelan Christopher (University of Minnesota)
Piazzesi Monika (Stanford University)
Piskorski Tomasz (Columbia University)
Rampini Adriano (Duke University)
Reagan Patricia (Ohio State University)
Reich Michael (UC Berkeley)
Reuben Ernesto (Northwestern University)
Roberts Michael (University of Pennsylvania)
Robinson David (Duke University)
Rogers Michele (Northwestern University)
Rotella Elyce (Indiana University)
Ruud Paul (Vassar College)
Safford Sean (University of Chicago)
Sandbu Martin E. (University of Pennsylvania)
Sapienza Paola (Northwestern University)
Savor Pavel (University of Pennsylvania)
Scharfstein David (Harvard University)
Seim Katja (University of Pennsylvania)
Seru Amit (University of Chicago)
Shang-Jin Wei (Columbia University)
Shimer Robert (University of Chicago)
Shore Stephen H. (Johns Hopkins University)
Siegel Ron (Northwestern University)
Smith David C. (University of Virginia)
Smith Vernon L.(Chapman University- Nobel Laureate)
Sorensen Morten (Columbia University)
Spiegel Matthew (Yale University)
Stevenson Betsey (University of Pennsylvania)
Stokey Nancy (University of Chicago)
Strahan Philip (Boston College)
Strebulaev Ilya (Stanford University)
Sufi Amir (University of Chicago)
Tabarrok Alex (George Mason University)
Taylor Alan M. (UC Davis)
Thompson Tim (Northwestern University)
Tschoegl Adrian E. (University of Pennsylvania)
Uhlig Harald (University of Chicago)
Ulrich, Maxim (Columbia University)
Van Buskirk Andrew (University of Chicago)
Veronesi Pietro (University of Chicago)
Vissing-Jorgensen Annette (Northwestern University)
Wacziarg Romain (UCLA)
Weill Pierre-Olivier (UCLA)
Williamson Samuel H. (Miami University)
Witte Mark (Northwestern University)
Wolfers Justin (University of Pennsylvania)
Woutersen Tiemen (Johns Hopkins University)
Zingales Luigi (University of Chicago)
Zitzewitz Eric (Dartmouth College)

word up to shelby!!!

word 'em up to shelby!!! you know the current administration has lost favor, and you know that there is no touch with reality, when the REPUBLICANS think they are crazy for this one!!! i mean, hello...! money is NOT REAL, so they feel they could just create MORE to bailout these corporations, and make them into banks??!! the dollar is not WORTH a thang these days!!! so peepahs, just SPEND it (it's just paper), and invest in something tangible...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

obama shos his strength here...

that's right! obama ain't gonna chump out of what is OBVIOUSLY an attempt on mc cain's part to escape the debates... and i think he actually handled himself well here... he said, give the money BACK to the people! yeah! if he was running on this, then i'd totally vote for him.

Monday, September 22, 2008

'the man in the mirror' documentary

watch this!!! dom did a very good job, and this was done with a lot of love... much respect.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

yet another video break...

people not from the states give this man so much love... why do we choose to focus on the negative? RESPECT!!!

and this is proof that ya'll can't say nothin'! RESPECT! as much as people want to hate, why do they talk about him when he isn't there? it's because they LOVE! love requires the same energy as hate, but the energy put into hate is so much easier...

and i stand by my belief that THIS MAN that sings to us should be president of this country!!! HE is the future president!!! he's just being modest... i love him SO MUCH! what you see on screen is NOTHING in comparison to seeing him in person! it's like... it's like... it's indescribable.

these two men were sent here as vehicles of love...

some labours of love...

this person has worked really hard on this film (i've been watching the process for a bit of time), and it looks really exciting. go and support this labour of love... just look up 'man in the mirror documentary' on saturday and you should be able to find it...

this is inspiring me... I WILL FINISH MY BOOK, I SWEAR! the goal is by the end of the year.

speaking of, i am also in a youtube clip, relating to none other than the MJ... there's some love out there, i tell you...

Monday, September 15, 2008

be a lover, not a fighter...

i have been doing a well-needed cleaning of my room since around 3 pm, and of course knowing me, there are diversions... i go to clean out this one box, and i come to find out all of the contents are essentially from 2005. 2005 was a very pivotal year for me; i ended a very abusive relationship, and that was also the year i met lumbia, my favourite person in the whole world (i think she's happy i am finally cleaning the room; she was getting stressed). the funny thing is, i was playing some music, and she was nowhere to be found... but when i put on michael she somehow was there. i'm serious, ya'll, she won't tolerate anyone else except michael. it's so funny.

speaking of... one of the things i found was an old issue of a paper i rarely read in the first place when i moved to portland, and a publication i read even less now- the portland mercury. its constant ode to irony and cynicism (as well as a condescending writing style when it comes to serious issues regarding 'people of color') gets old very fast. however, this particular issue i found was quite interesting, because on the cover it read: 'the fan in the mirror- outside the courthouse with the fans of michael jackson'. i had to laugh to myself, because i was not even following the man at that point, and i remember nothing about the particular case that was going on in 2005.

i am going to come out here and make a confession- i am not a fan of michael jackson. the last time i could sincerely say i was a fan was in 1982. and then the man scared me to death, with that damn thriller film. i was never the same. the 'can you feel it' piece scared me as well. everything he did was so bombastic. in the long run, conceptually, it was amazing. but to this 6-year old, all i could do was have nightmares for days. my mother played michael and his brothers' music since the day i came out of the womb. and even though my mother continued to listen to his music after 1982, he continued to scare me. i mean, i thought 'smooth criminal' was about my mother!!! (her middle name is ann). i was like, WHAT!!! my mother is okay, MI-kal!!!

i still liked his music, but he scared me too much for me to process anything about him.

and... as i mentioned in another piece here on this blog page, it was not until 2007 where i really examined michael's role in our world. and i became an advocate. for myself, i find this to be of more significance than my being a fan, because to me, fandom requires a suspension of belief that the object of your adoration is a human. OF COURSE fandom means different things to different people; i am just stating what it means for myself. i refuse to believe that michael is god, or A god. i consider myself to be an advocate, because michael is a composite of what each of us deals with as humans, times 100. he has taken on a lot of responsibilities to represent himself as one who takes on the joys and pains of us; but he has also had much of that dumped on him. if i had to give one reason as to why i appreciate him, i would say that his love of life and his will to live are inspiring.

this love of life is translated into the brilliant music he makes. perhaps this is why lumbia is tolerant of him. why she does not like STEVIE, i don't know why... his arrangements are impeccable, and his ability to create an inimitable identity for himself and his art (even if people attempt to rip him off, in my opinion) is to his credit. i mean, who else could make an album like invincible? no one else, as far as i am concerned. i mean, who could make an album like any of his? the absolute brilliance of his narrative ability is best shown in 1995's 'HIStory'; where he essentially takes us to the first part of his post-motown career- sure, they are songs we've all heard before- but then he's like 'aiight, i'ma REALLY tell ya'll how i am FEELING!' the condescending tone of 'D.S', the outright anger of 'scream', the solemn tone of 'little susie'... and the best narrative of all to describe his feelings surrounding the initial court case and the isolation of someone of his stature-'stranger in moscow'. if michael did not state his case with the album defining his human-ness, i don't know what to tell you. it was his most honest work, in my opinion.

the article (by david schmader) describes experiences with who schmader calls 'the faithful', or 'true believers'. like schmader, for me it is not difficult to make connections between jackson's childhood and the possibility of him being a pedophile. if we are to be fair and look at him as a human, why should he be excused from this line of thinking when most other people who display the same or similar behaviours would be deemed harmful to children? in his conversations with the 'true believers', schmader came to this conclusion: "to believe in michael jackson's innocence is to believe in a world of extraordinary purity and simplicity, a world with clear boundaries between good and evil."

the thing is, i question pretty much everything. i don't believe in a world where there is a line drawn in the sand between 'good' and 'evil'. i cannot believe that, if i am to respectfully humanize mr. jackson. and in my questioning this whole situation (of both trials) i have come to a conclusion as well- HE WAS CORRECTLY CLEARED OF ALL THE CHARGES HE WAS ACCUSED OF (in the second trial). as far as the settlement that existed in the first, no one knows what he was going through (except for those close to him). considering how sensitive michael is, if any of us were in his shoes, would we have done the same thing (particularly if advised to do so)? i read the transcripts, documents and conversations with the accusers of both trials, and to me, there was clearly enough evidence to prove jackson's innocence. with all of the information out there (which the public has access to) i am not sure why people are still calling him a pedophile.

and if, knowing what i know now, if the MJ were to go through a similar trial today LIKE THE LAST TWO, i'd be out there like 'FREE MICHAEL!'

michael is far from god, but i still maintain that his imperfection is a symbol of all of our imperfections. we just have yet to admit it. everyone exists here for a reason, and i do believe he was sent here to teach us about love.

which is the reason i am writing this blog... because someone stopped me the other day and thanked me for putting an event on that i did in honor of the MJ's 50th birthday. it was a benefit for two non-profit organizations. she told me it was a lot of fun.. but what touched me was that she said that her association with michael was essentially his music she heard when she was growing up. but she realized throughout the night that what he was doing was really about love.

which is one of my points in my advocacy for the MJ- to show that what he does is about love.

and as i clean my room, i realize there is SO much more house cleaning to be done, IF you know what i mean...

Sunday, September 14, 2008

who i am supporting in this election...

if ya'll are asking, this is who i am supporting in this election.

i cannot support candidates who support wiretapping, who support taking troops out of one war just to put in another (iraq to afghanistan), who supported a vague terrorist act (s. 1959), who support the continuation of the embargo on cuba, who are not going to change the face of health care to make it FREE to this country's citizens, who propose installing a 'secret police' system just as 'good' as the military, who avoid discussing the genocide of people in the gulf coast (via katrina), who avoid discussing the oppression of political prisoners, who avoid discussing the terrorism that exists for people like the jena six and sean bell (and their loved ones), who avoid discussing the so-called 'government's implication of the drug war (aka placing drugs in predominately black communities), who attend conferences like the bilderberg one in chantilly, virginia... who dare not critique what occurs at events like the RNC (it's 1968 in chicago all over again)...

i cannot support ANY candidate in ANY of the major parties (who are essentially merged into one party). if you feel comfortable with voting for them and you can wake up in the morning proud of your vote, by all means, do that. i am not here to argue with you. but me, i would feel like i wasted my vote, because i did not vote with conviction. i do not vote by 'lesser than two evils' theory.

as has been already said by others, 'what color (and at this point gender) do you want your imperialism?'

Saturday, September 13, 2008

addicted to juice...

so... where i work, we have this product called nantucket nectars; and i openly wonder on occasions why black people tend to gravitate toward this product, and not the other juices in the store... i mean, we have local juices, smoothies, and so on... i mean, people don't even look around the store, they go straight to this nantucket business... i asked a woman, i said to her, 'what is the appeal with this product'? i expected her to mention the inexpensive price or something. her answer was that she was just thirsty. her answer intrigued me so, and the kind of person i was, in had to do some homework... herein lies the crux... according to wikipedia:

"Nantucket Nectars
is a beverage company created by Tom First and Tom Scott. They met at Brown University in 1985. Four years later they graduated and headed to Nantucket. That summer they started Allserve, a floating convenience store servicing boats in Nantucket Harbor. The pair delivered everything from newspapers to laundry.
In 1989 Tom First attempted to recreate a peach drink that he drank on a regular basis while on a trip to Spain. After successfully re-creating the taste they were looking for, the two began mixing the juice in a blender, pasteurizing it, and bottling it themselves. The following summer they sold it off their boat, and it was not until later that they decided to call it Nantucket Nectars.
Nantucket Nectars was purchased by London-based Cadbury Schweppes PLC in 2002 with its headquarters in Rye Brook, NY. The founders are no longer involved in the day-to-day operations, but still perform marketing duties, including their voices for radio ads."

cadbury schweppes... the same corporation that owned def jam for a time. they put something in their drinks or something, because seriously, black people rush for the stuff. i decided i am going to do a survey and ask black people about their addiction to the nantucket when they go to the health food store, which has SO MANY products in it...

this is crucial for me too, because come really soon, it may be considered a terrorist act to even have a community garden, or even be at a non-profit community co-op, since it is ultimately bringing awareness about nutrition, thereby affecting major corporations' sales. one of my goals is to bring awareness to us about alternatives to all this food we are trained to eat, with all these chemicals. bring attention to why we purchase the things we do.

i am planning to write a short piece within the next few days about community and nutrition, and the healthy staples we could eat... no, i'm far from the world's healthiest person, but i know there are alternatives.

Friday, September 12, 2008

the great ironies of life...

yeah... so... i was told that sarah palin DOES NOT LIKE CATS!!! if there is NO OTHER REASON NOT to support her on the V.P. ticket, THAT IS THE ONE!!!

anyways, i keep thinking about these great ironies of life.. like, what if a fire truck sets on fire, or an ambulance van gets in an accident? or white people with black people names, like willie nelson or tyrone power?

you know, just some things to think about...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

more time of reflection...

inevitably this is a time to reflect upon our place in this time as citizens of the world... this day, inevitably calls us to reflect... however; this is to time to become emotional. once again it is crucial to reflect upon out place in this world, and in this country-which is but a tiny, tiny glimpse of particles, molecules and ions.

when the USApatriot act was signed off, i made sure to read its basic elements... if anyone has been paying attention, executive orders and acts get passed because (a. they are written in ways so as not to be fathomable to the 'common people', and (b. they are passed during hours in which most people are not awake. the almost 400 pages of this patriot act were not read by the folks who allowed it to pass. the document was distributed at such an hour and manner that was unattainable and unconscionable. ashcroft essentially scared the house and senate to support this act, due to the fear of 'terrorism'. however, in reading the document, the definition of terrorism is so vague, yet all-encompassing.

yes, i have read the document in full. my eyes hurt from doing so.

to call september the 11th 'patriot day' is far from misleading... but to make the overall assumption that it represents the dedication to this country's revolutionary spirit is. september is actually an anniversary to truly re-evaluate what the ''Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001"means in this day and age... ultimately, it's HUAC and CoIntelpro merged into the 'technology age'... with information being transferred second by second, those who propose these laws struggle to find ways to remain ahead of the observers and commentators. what else could you do but making the titles so difficult to understand? how many people are going to measure the laws today with they ones they have ultimately phased out? and of course, how many people are actually going to sit and look at a near-400 page document, REGARDING OUR PERSONAL AND COLLECTIVE SECURITY/SAFETY, AND CIVIL LIBERTIES? the vagueness of this document violates so many of our collective rights as beings on this earth. i mean, one is considered a terrorist, due to videorecording a protest... the police confiscate cameras. no-knock warrants are handed out to search the living spaces of people who peacefully convene, as they critique the system they exist in.

all of a sudden, it has built up that, since so many cultural and ethnic groups have convened to do this critique, it now becomes terrorism. but when you had a bunch of (should i say 'illegal'?) immigrants enter this country and formed an insurrection against the british (several times, i may add, thus creating a genocide for INDIGENOUS people here) that was okay... homogeny pays, don't it?

it makes me wonder when it will truly come to a point when those who make a call to boycott certain products or television networks (similar to what happened in 1955 in the black community (in new york city in the month of february; it was a two-hour boycott of all radio and television programs in order to bring attention to the need for more jobs for black people in the radio-television industry) and what is happening in more recent times with 'turn off channel zero') will be called out on those same networks as terrorists... section 102 of title I (enhancing domestic security against terrorism) of the patriot act, entitled 'Sense of Congress condemning discrimination against Arab and Muslim Americans' claims that:

"(a) FINDINGS- Congress makes the following findings:
(1) Arab Americans, Muslim Americans, and Americans from South Asia play a vital role in our Nation and are entitled to nothing less than the full rights of every American.
(2) The acts of violence that have been taken against Arab and Muslim Americans since the September 11, 2001, attacks against the United States should be and are condemned by all Americans who value freedom.
(3) The concept of individual responsibility for wrongdoing is sacrosanct in American society, and applies equally to all religious, racial, and ethnic groups.
(4) When American citizens commit acts of violence against those who are, or are perceived to be, of Arab or Muslim descent, they should be punished to the full extent of the law.
(5) Muslim Americans have become so fearful of harassment that many Muslim women are changing the way they dress to avoid becoming targets.
(6) Many Arab Americans and Muslim Americans have acted heroically during the attacks on the United States, including Mohammed Salman Hamdani, a 23-year-old New Yorker of Pakistani descent, who is believed to have gone to the World Trade Center to offer rescue assistance and is now missing.
(b) SENSE OF CONGRESS- It is the sense of Congress that--
(1) the civil rights and civil liberties of all Americans, including Arab Americans, Muslim Americans, and Americans from South Asia, must be protected, and that every effort must be taken to preserve their safety;
(2) any acts of violence or discrimination against any Americans be condemned; and
(3) the Nation is called upon to recognize the patriotism of fellow citizens from all ethnic, racial, and religious backgrounds."

does this mean that networks and publications owned by a certain rupert murdoch (ala the fox 'news' network) should be charged in the implication of conspiracy to assist in the death of certain folks? i mean, how many times have people on that network called for the assasination of barack obama, as well as who they consider 'illegal immigrants'... whatever my opinions of brother obama (and i've got plenty of them), he does not deserve to be treated in that fashion.

and let's get to these two:


Section 203 of the International Emergency Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1702) is amended--
(1) in subsection (a)(1)--
(A) at the end of subparagraph (A) (flush to that subparagraph), by striking `; and' and inserting a comma and the following:
`by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States;';
(B) in subparagraph (B)--
(i) by inserting `, block during the pendency of an investigation' after `investigate'; and
(ii) by striking `interest;' and inserting `interest by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States; and';
(C) by striking `by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States`; and
(D) by inserting at the end the following:
`(C) when the United States is engaged in armed hostilities or has been attacked by a foreign country or foreign nationals, confiscate any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, of any foreign person, foreign organization, or foreign country that he determines has planned, authorized, aided, or engaged in such hostilities or attacks against the United States; and all right, title, and interest in any property so confiscated shall vest, when, as, and upon the terms directed by the President, in such agency or person as the President may designate from time to time, and upon such terms and conditions as the President may prescribe, such interest or property shall be held, used, administered, liquidated, sold, or otherwise dealt with in the interest of and for the benefit of the United States, and such designated agency or person may perform any and all acts incident to the accomplishment or furtherance of these purposes.'; and
(2) by inserting at the end the following:
`(c) CLASSIFIED INFORMATION- In any judicial review of a determination made under this section, if the determination was based on classified information (as defined in section 1(a) of the Classified Information Procedures Act) such information may be submitted to the reviewing court ex parte and in camera. This subsection does not confer or imply any right to judicial review.'.



Section 2516(1) of title 18, United States Code, is amended--
(1) by redesignating paragraph (p), as so redesignated by section 434(2) of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-132; 110 Stat. 1274), as paragraph (r); and
(2) by inserting after paragraph (p), as so redesignated by section 201(3) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (division C of Public Law 104-208; 110 Stat. 3009-565), the following new paragraph:
`(q) any criminal violation of section 229 (relating to chemical weapons); or sections 2332, 2332a, 2332b, 2332d, 2339A, or 2339B of this title (relating to terrorism); or'.


Section 2516(1)(c) of title 18, United States Code, is amended by striking `and section 1341 (relating to mail fraud),' and inserting `section 1341 (relating to mail fraud), a felony violation of section 1030 (relating to computer fraud and abuse),'.



(1) IN GENERAL- Section 2702 of title 18, United States Code, is amended--
(A) by striking the section heading and inserting the following:

`Sec. 2702. Voluntary disclosure of customer communications or records';

(B) in subsection (a)--
(i) in paragraph (2)(A), by striking `and' at the end;
(ii) in paragraph (2)(B), by striking the period and inserting `; and'; and
(iii) by inserting after paragraph (2) the following:
`(3) a provider of remote computing service or electronic communication service to the public shall not knowingly divulge a record or other information pertaining to a subscriber to or customer of such service (not including the contents of communications covered by paragraph (1) or (2)) to any governmental entity.';
(C) in subsection (b), by striking `EXCEPTIONS- A person or entity' and inserting `EXCEPTIONS FOR DISCLOSURE OF COMMUNICATIONS- A provider described in subsection (a)';
(D) in subsection (b)(6)--
(i) in subparagraph (A)(ii), by striking `or';
(ii) in subparagraph (B), by striking the period and inserting `; or'; and
(iii) by adding after subparagraph (B) the following:
`(C) if the provider reasonably believes that an emergency involving immediate danger of death or serious physical injury to any person requires disclosure of the information without delay.'; and
(E) by inserting after subsection (b) the following:

`(c) EXCEPTIONS FOR DISCLOSURE OF CUSTOMER RECORDS- A provider described in subsection (a) may divulge a record or other information pertaining to a subscriber to or customer of such service (not including the contents of communications covered by subsection (a)(1) or (a)(2))--

`(1) as otherwise authorized in section 2703;
`(2) with the lawful consent of the customer or subscriber;
`(3) as may be necessarily incident to the rendition of the service or to the protection of the rights or property of the provider of that service;
`(4) to a governmental entity, if the provider reasonably believes that an emergency involving immediate danger of death or serious physical injury to any person justifies disclosure of the information; or
`(5) to any person other than a governmental entity.'.
(2) TECHNICAL AND CONFORMING AMENDMENT- The table of sections for chapter 121 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by striking the item relating to section 2702 and inserting the following:
`2702. Voluntary disclosure of customer communications or records.'.


(1) IN GENERAL- Section 2703 of title 18, United States Code, is amended--
(A) by striking the section heading and inserting the following:

`Sec. 2703. Required disclosure of customer communications or records';

(B) in subsection (c) by redesignating paragraph (2) as paragraph (3);
(C) in subsection (c)(1)--
(i) by striking `(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (B), a provider of electronic communication service or remote computing service may' and inserting `A governmental entity may require a provider of electronic communication service or remote computing service to';
(ii) by striking `covered by subsection (a) or (b) of this section) to any person other than a governmental entity.
`(B) A provider of electronic communication service or remote computing service shall disclose a record or other information pertaining to a subscriber to or customer of such service (not including the contents of communications covered by subsection (a) or (b) of this section) to a governmental entity' and inserting `)';
(iii) by redesignating subparagraph (C) as paragraph (2);
(iv) by redesignating clauses (i), (ii), (iii), and (iv) as subparagraphs (A), (B), (C), and (D), respectively;
(v) in subparagraph (D) (as redesignated) by striking the period and inserting `; or'; and
(vi) by inserting after subparagraph (D) (as redesignated) the following:
`(E) seeks information under paragraph (2).'; and
(D) in paragraph (2) (as redesignated) by striking `subparagraph (B)' and insert `paragraph (1)'.
(2) TECHNICAL AND CONFORMING AMENDMENT- The table of sections for chapter 121 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by striking the item relating to section 2703 and inserting the following:
`2703. Required disclosure of customer communications or records.'.


Section 3103a of title 18, United States Code, is amended--

(1) by inserting `(a) IN GENERAL- ' before `In addition'; and
(2) by adding at the end the following:

`(b) DELAY- With respect to the issuance of any warrant or court order under this section, or any other rule of law, to search for and seize any property or material that constitutes evidence of a criminal offense in violation of the laws of the United States, any notice required, or that may be required, to be given may be delayed if--

`(1) the court finds reasonable cause to believe that providing immediate notification of the execution of the warrant may have an adverse result (as defined in section 2705);
`(2) the warrant prohibits the seizure of any tangible property, any wire or electronic communication (as defined in section 2510), or, except as expressly provided in chapter 121, any stored wire or electronic information, except where the court finds reasonable necessity for the seizure; and
`(3) the warrant provides for the giving of such notice within a reasonable period of its execution, which period may thereafter be extended by the court for good cause shown.'.


`(a) On a semiannual basis, the Attorney General shall fully inform the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives and the Select Committee on Intelligence of the Senate concerning all requests for the production of tangible things under section 402.

`(b) On a semiannual basis, the Attorney General shall provide to the Committees on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives and the Senate a report setting forth with respect to the preceding 6-month period--

`(1) the total number of applications made for orders approving requests for the production of tangible things under section 402; and
`(2) the total number of such orders either granted, modified, or denied.'.


Section 105 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1805) is amended by inserting after subsection (g) the following:

`(h) No cause of action shall lie in any court against any provider of a wire or electronic communication service, landlord, custodian, or other person (including any officer, employee, agent, or other specified person thereof) that furnishes any information, facilities, or technical assistance in accordance with a court order or request for emergency assistance under this Act.'.


(a) AMENDMENT RELATING TO CIVIL LIABILITY IMMUNITY FOR DISCLOSURES- Section 5318(g)(3) of title 31, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

`(A) IN GENERAL- Any financial institution that makes a voluntary disclosure of any possible violation of law or regulation to a government agency or makes a disclosure pursuant to this subsection or any other authority, and any director, officer, employee, or agent of such institution who makes, or requires another to make any such disclosure, shall not be liable to any person under any law or regulation of the United States, any constitution, law, or regulation of any State or political subdivision of any State, or under any contract or other legally enforceable agreement (including any arbitration agreement), for such disclosure or for any failure to provide notice of such disclosure to the person who is the subject of such disclosure or any other person identified in the disclosure.
`(B) RULE OF CONSTRUCTION- Subparagraph (A) shall not be construed as creating--
`(i) any inference that the term `person', as used in such subparagraph, may be construed more broadly than its ordinary usage so as to include any government or agency of government; or
`(ii) any immunity against, or otherwise affecting, any civil or criminal action brought by any government or agency of government to enforce any constitution, law, or regulation of such government or agency.'.

(b) PROHIBITION ON NOTIFICATION OF DISCLOSURES- Section 5318(g)(2) of title 31, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

`(A) IN GENERAL- If a financial institution or any director, officer, employee, or agent of any financial institution, voluntarily or pursuant to this section or any other authority, reports a suspicious transaction to a government agency--
`(i) the financial institution, director, officer, employee, or agent may not notify any person involved in the transaction that the transaction has been reported; and
`(ii) no officer or employee of the Federal Government or of any State, local, tribal, or territorial government within the United States, who has any knowledge that such report was made may disclose to any person involved in the transaction that the transaction has been reported, other than as necessary to fulfill the official duties of such officer or employee.
`(i) RULE OF CONSTRUCTION- Notwithstanding the application of subparagraph (A) in any other context, subparagraph (A) shall not be construed as prohibiting any financial institution, or any director, officer, employee, or agent of such institution, from including information that was included in a report to which subparagraph (A) applies--
`(I) in a written employment reference that is provided in accordance with section 18(w) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act in response to a request from another financial institution; or
`(II) in a written termination notice or employment reference that is provided in accordance with the rules of a self-regulatory organization registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission or the Commodity Futures Trading Commission,
except that such written reference or notice may not disclose that such information was also included in any such report, or that such report was made.
`(ii) INFORMATION NOT REQUIRED- Clause (i) shall not be construed, by itself, to create any affirmative duty to include any information described in clause (i) in any employment reference or termination notice referred to in clause (i).'.


(a) GROUNDS OF INADMISSIBILITY- Section 212(a)(3) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(3)) is amended--

(1) in subparagraph (B)--
(A) in clause (i)--
(i) by amending subclause (IV) to read as follows:
`(IV) is a representative (as defined in clause (v)) of--

`(aa) a foreign terrorist organization, as designated by the Secretary of State under section 219, or

`(bb) a political, social or other similar group whose public endorsement of acts of terrorist activity the Secretary of State has determined undermines United States efforts to reduce or eliminate terrorist activities,';

(ii) in subclause (V), by inserting `or' after `section 219,'; and
(iii) by adding at the end the following new subclauses:
`(VI) has used the alien's position of prominence within any country to endorse or espouse terrorist activity, or to persuade others to support terrorist activity or a terrorist organization, in a way that the Secretary of State has determined undermines United States efforts to reduce or eliminate terrorist activities, or
`(VII) is the spouse or child of an alien who is inadmissible under this section, if the activity causing the alien to be found inadmissible occurred within the last 5 years,';
(B) by redesignating clauses (ii), (iii), and (iv) as clauses (iii), (iv), and (v), respectively;
(C) in clause (i)(II), by striking `clause (iii)' and inserting `clause (iv)';
(D) by inserting after clause (i) the following:
`(ii) EXCEPTION- Subclause (VII) of clause (i) does not apply to a spouse or child--
`(I) who did not know or should not reasonably have known of the activity causing the alien to be found inadmissible under this section; or
`(II) whom the consular officer or Attorney General has reasonable grounds to believe has renounced the activity causing the alien to be found inadmissible under this section.';
(E) in clause (iii) (as redesignated by subparagraph (B))--
(i) by inserting `it had been' before `committed in the United States'; and
(ii) in subclause (V)(b), by striking `or firearm' and inserting `, firearm, or other weapon or dangerous device';
(F) by amending clause (iv) (as redesignated by subparagraph (B)) to read as follows:
`(iv) ENGAGE IN TERRORIST ACTIVITY DEFINED- As used in this chapter, the term `engage in terrorist activity' means, in an individual capacity or as a member of an organization--
`(I) to commit or to incite to commit, under circumstances indicating an intention to cause death or serious bodily injury, a terrorist activity;
`(II) to prepare or plan a terrorist activity;
`(III) to gather information on potential targets for terrorist activity;
`(IV) to solicit funds or other things of value for--

`(aa) a terrorist activity;

`(bb) a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(I) or (vi)(II); or

`(cc) a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(III), unless the solicitor can demonstrate that he did not know, and should not reasonably have known, that the solicitation would further the organization's terrorist activity;

`(V) to solicit any individual--

`(aa) to engage in conduct otherwise described in this clause;

`(bb) for membership in a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(I) or (vi)(II); or

`(cc) for membership in a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(III), unless the solicitor can demonstrate that he did not know, and should not reasonably have known, that the solicitation would further the organization's terrorist activity; or

`(VI) to commit an act that the actor knows, or reasonably should know, affords material support, including a safe house, transportation, communications, funds, transfer of funds or other material financial benefit, false documentation or identification, weapons (including chemical, biological, or radiological weapons), explosives, or training--

`(aa) for the commission of a terrorist activity;

`(bb) to any individual who the actor knows, or reasonably should know, has committed or plans to commit a terrorist activity;

`(cc) to a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(I) or (vi)(II); or

`(dd) to a terrorist organization described in clause (vi)(III), unless the actor can demonstrate that he did not know, and should not reasonably have known, that the act would further the organization's terrorist activity.

This clause shall not apply to any material support the alien afforded to an organization or individual that has committed terrorist activity, if the Secretary of State, after consultation with the Attorney General, or the Attorney General, after consultation with the Secretary of State, concludes in his sole unreviewable discretion, that this clause should not apply.'; and
(G) by adding at the end the following new clause:
`(vi) TERRORIST ORGANIZATION DEFINED- As used in clause (i)(VI) and clause (iv), the term `terrorist organization' means an organization--
`(I) designated under section 219;
`(II) otherwise designated, upon publication in the Federal Register, by the Secretary of State in consultation with or upon the request of the Attorney General, as a terrorist organization, after finding that the organization engages in the activities described in subclause (I), (II), or (III) of clause (iv), or that the organization provides material support to further terrorist activity; or
`(III) that is a group of two or more individuals, whether organized or not, which engages in the activities described in subclause (I), (II), or (III) of clause (iv).'; and
(2) by adding at the end the following new subparagraph:
`(F) ASSOCIATION WITH TERRORIST ORGANIZATIONS- Any alien who the Secretary of State, after consultation with the Attorney General, or the Attorney General, after consultation with the Secretary of State, determines has been associated with a terrorist organization and intends while in the United States to engage solely, principally, or incidentally in activities that could endanger the welfare, safety, or security of the United States is inadmissible.'.


(1) Section 237(a)(4)(B) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(4)(B)) is amended by striking `section 212(a)(3)(B)(iii)' and inserting `section 212(a)(3)(B)(iv)'.
(2) Section 208(b)(2)(A)(v) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(v)) is amended by striking `or (IV)' and inserting `(IV), or (VI)'.


(1) IN GENERAL- Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, the amendments made by this section shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act and shall apply to--
(A) actions taken by an alien before, on, or after such date; and
(B) all aliens, without regard to the date of entry or attempted entry into the United States--
(i) in removal proceedings on or after such date (except for proceedings in which there has been a final administrative decision before such date); or
(ii) seeking admission to the United States on or after such date.
(2) SPECIAL RULE FOR ALIENS IN EXCLUSION OR DEPORTATION PROCEEDINGS- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, sections 212(a)(3)(B) and 237(a)(4)(B) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended by this Act, shall apply to all aliens in exclusion or deportation proceedings on or after the date of the enactment of this Act (except for proceedings in which there has been a final administrative decision before such date) as if such proceedings were removal proceedings.
(A) IN GENERAL- Notwithstanding paragraphs (1) and (2), no alien shall be considered inadmissible under section 212(a)(3) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(3)), or deportable under section 237(a)(4)(B) of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(4)(B)), by reason of the amendments made by subsection (a), on the ground that the alien engaged in a terrorist activity described in subclause (IV)(bb), (V)(bb), or (VI)(cc) of section 212(a)(3)(B)(iv) of such Act (as so amended) with respect to a group at any time when the group was not a terrorist organization designated by the Secretary of State under section 219 of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1189) or otherwise designated under section 212(a)(3)(B)(vi)(II) of such Act (as so amended).
(B) STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION- Subparagraph (A) shall not be construed to prevent an alien from being considered inadmissible or deportable for having engaged in a terrorist activity--
(i) described in subclause (IV)(bb), (V)(bb), or (VI)(cc) of section 212(a)(3)(B)(iv) of such Act (as so amended) with respect to a terrorist organization at any time when such organization was designated by the Secretary of State under section 219 of such Act or otherwise designated under section 212(a)(3)(B)(vi)(II) of such Act (as so amended); or
(ii) described in subclause (IV)(cc), (V)(cc), or (VI)(dd) of section 212(a)(3)(B)(iv) of such Act (as so amended) with respect to a terrorist organization described in section 212(a)(3)(B)(vi)(III) of such Act (as so amended).
(4) EXCEPTION- The Secretary of State, in consultation with the Attorney General, may determine that the amendments made by this section shall not apply with respect to actions by an alien taken outside the United States before the date of the enactment of this Act upon the recommendation of a consular officer who has concluded that there is not reasonable ground to believe that the alien knew or reasonably should have known that the actions would further a terrorist activity.

(c) DESIGNATION OF FOREIGN TERRORIST ORGANIZATIONS- Section 219(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1189(a)) is amended--

(1) in paragraph (1)(B), by inserting `or terrorism (as defined in section 140(d)(2) of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1988 and 1989 (22 U.S.C. 2656f(d)(2)), or retains the capability and intent to engage in terrorist activity or terrorism' after `212(a)(3)(B)';
(2) in paragraph (1)(C), by inserting `or terrorism' after `terrorist activity';
(3) by amending paragraph (2)(A) to read as follows:
`(i) TO CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS- Seven days before making a designation under this subsection, the Secretary shall, by classified communication, notify the Speaker and Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, the President pro tempore, Majority Leader, and Minority Leader of the Senate, and the members of the relevant committees of the House of Representatives and the Senate, in writing, of the intent to designate an organization under this subsection, together with the findings made under paragraph (1) with respect to that organization, and the factual basis therefor.
`(ii) PUBLICATION IN FEDERAL REGISTER- The Secretary shall publish the designation in the Federal Register seven days after providing the notification under clause (i).';
(4) in paragraph (2)(B)(i), by striking `subparagraph (A)' and inserting `subparagraph (A)(ii)';
(5) in paragraph (2)(C), by striking `paragraph (2)' and inserting `paragraph (2)(A)(i)';
(6) in paragraph (3)(B), by striking `subsection (c)' and inserting `subsection (b)';
(7) in paragraph (4)(B), by inserting after the first sentence the following: `The Secretary also may redesignate such organization at the end of any 2-year redesignation period (but not sooner than 60 days prior to the termination of such period) for an additional 2-year period upon a finding that the relevant circumstances described in paragraph (1) still exist. Any redesignation shall be effective immediately following the end of the prior 2-year designation or redesignation period unless a different effective date is provided in such redesignation.';
(8) in paragraph (6)(A)--
(A) by inserting `or a redesignation made under paragraph (4)(B)' after `paragraph (1)';
(B) in clause (i)--
(i) by inserting `or redesignation' after `designation' the first place it appears; and
(ii) by striking `of the designation'; and
(C) in clause (ii), by striking `of the designation';
(9) in paragraph (6)(B)--
(A) by striking `through (4)' and inserting `and (3)'; and
(B) by inserting at the end the following new sentence: `Any revocation shall take effect on the date specified in the revocation or upon publication in the Federal Register if no effective date is specified.';
(10) in paragraph (7), by inserting `, or the revocation of a redesignation under paragraph (6),' after `paragraph (5) or (6)'; and
(11) in paragraph (8)--
(A) by striking `paragraph (1)(B)' and inserting `paragraph (2)(B), or if a redesignation under this subsection has become effective under paragraph (4)(B)';
(B) by inserting `or an alien in a removal proceeding' after `criminal action'; and
(C) by inserting `or redesignation' before `as a defense'.


(a) IN GENERAL- The Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.) is amended by inserting after section 236 the following:



`(1) CUSTODY- The Attorney General shall take into custody any alien who is certified under paragraph (3).
`(2) RELEASE- Except as provided in paragraphs (5) and (6), the Attorney General shall maintain custody of such an alien until the alien is removed from the United States. Except as provided in paragraph (6), such custody shall be maintained irrespective of any relief from removal for which the alien may be eligible, or any relief from removal granted the alien, until the Attorney General determines that the alien is no longer an alien who may be certified under paragraph (3). If the alien is finally determined not to be removable, detention pursuant to this subsection shall terminate.
`(3) CERTIFICATION- The Attorney General may certify an alien under this paragraph if the Attorney General has reasonable grounds to believe that the alien--
`(A) is described in section 212(a)(3)(A)(i), 212(a)(3)(A)(iii), 212(a)(3)(B), 237(a)(4)(A)(i), 237(a)(4)(A)(iii), or 237(a)(4)(B); or
`(B) is engaged in any other activity that endangers the national security of the United States.
`(4) NONDELEGATION- The Attorney General may delegate the authority provided under paragraph (3) only to the Deputy Attorney General. The Deputy Attorney General may not delegate such authority.
`(5) COMMENCEMENT OF PROCEEDINGS- The Attorney General shall place an alien detained under paragraph (1) in removal proceedings, or shall charge the alien with a criminal offense, not later than 7 days after the commencement of such detention. If the requirement of the preceding sentence is not satisfied, the Attorney General shall release the alien.
`(6) LIMITATION ON INDEFINITE DETENTION- An alien detained solely under paragraph (1) who has not been removed under section 241(a)(1)(A), and whose removal is unlikely in the reasonably foreseeable future, may be detained for additional periods of up to six months only if the release of the alien will threaten the national security of the United States or the safety of the community or any person.
`(7) REVIEW OF CERTIFICATION- The Attorney General shall review the certification made under paragraph (3) every 6 months. If the Attorney General determines, in the Attorney General's discretion, that the certification should be revoked, the alien may be released on such conditions as the Attorney General deems appropriate, unless such release is otherwise prohibited by law. The alien may request each 6 months in writing that the Attorney General reconsider the certification and may submit documents or other evidence in support of that request.


`(1) IN GENERAL- Judicial review of any action or decision relating to this section (including judicial review of the merits of a determination made under subsection (a)(3) or (a)(6)) is available exclusively in habeas corpus proceedings consistent with this subsection. Except as provided in the preceding sentence, no court shall have jurisdiction to review, by habeas corpus petition or otherwise, any such action or decision.
`(A) IN GENERAL- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, including section 2241(a) of title 28, United States Code, habeas corpus proceedings described in paragraph (1) may be initiated only by an application filed with--
`(i) the Supreme Court;
`(ii) any justice of the Supreme Court;
`(iii) any circuit judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit; or
`(iv) any district court otherwise having jurisdiction to entertain it.
`(B) APPLICATION TRANSFER- Section 2241(b) of title 28, United States Code, shall apply to an application for a writ of habeas corpus described in subparagraph (A).
`(3) APPEALS- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, including section 2253 of title 28, in habeas corpus proceedings described in paragraph (1) before a circuit or district judge, the final order shall be subject to review, on appeal, by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. There shall be no right of appeal in such proceedings to any other circuit court of appeals.
`(4) RULE OF DECISION- The law applied by the Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit shall be regarded as the rule of decision in habeas corpus proceedings described in paragraph (1).

`(c) STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION- The provisions of this section shall not be applicable to any other provision of this Act.'.

(b) CLERICAL AMENDMENT- The table of contents of the Immigration and Nationality Act is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 236 the following:

`Sec. 236A. Mandatory detention of suspected terrorist; habeas corpus; judicial review.'.

(c) REPORTS- Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 6 months thereafter, the Attorney General shall submit a report to the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives and the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate, with respect to the reporting period, on--

(1) the number of aliens certified under section 236A(a)(3) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as added by subsection (a);
(2) the grounds for such certifications;
(3) the nationalities of the aliens so certified;
(4) the length of the detention for each alien so certified; and
(5) the number of aliens so certified who--
(A) were granted any form of relief from removal;
(B) were removed;
(C) the Attorney General has determined are no longer aliens who may be so certified; or
(D) were released from detention.


and my favourite:


(a) DOMESTIC TERRORISM DEFINED- Section 2331 of title 18, United States Code, is amended--
(1) in paragraph (1)(B)(iii), by striking `by assassination or kidnapping' and inserting `by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping';
(2) in paragraph (3), by striking `and';
(3) in paragraph (4), by striking the period at the end and inserting `; and'; and
(4) by adding at the end the following:
`(5) the term `domestic terrorism' means activities that--
`(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State;
`(B) appear to be intended--
`(i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population;
`(ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or
`(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and
`(C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.'.

(b) CONFORMING AMENDMENT- Section 3077(1) of title 18, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

`(1) `act of terrorism' means an act of domestic or international terrorism as defined in section 2331;'.


(a) IN GENERAL- Chapter 113B of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding after section 2338 the following new section:

`Sec. 2339. Harboring or concealing terrorists

`(a) Whoever harbors or conceals any person who he knows, or has reasonable grounds to believe, has committed, or is about to commit, an offense under section 32 (relating to destruction of aircraft or aircraft facilities), section 175 (relating to biological weapons), section 229 (relating to chemical weapons), section 831 (relating to nuclear materials), paragraph (2) or (3) of section 844(f) (relating to arson and bombing of government property risking or causing injury or death), section 1366(a) (relating to the destruction of an energy facility), section 2280 (relating to violence against maritime navigation), section 2332a (relating to weapons of mass destruction), or section 2332b (relating to acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries) of this title, section 236(a) (relating to sabotage of nuclear facilities or fuel) of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2284(a)), or section 46502 (relating to aircraft piracy) of title 49, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.'.

`(b) A violation of this section may be prosecuted in any Federal judicial district in which the underlying offense was committed, or in any other Federal judicial district as provided by law.'.

(b) TECHNICAL AMENDMENT- The chapter analysis for chapter 113B of title 18, United States Code, is amended by inserting after the item for section 2338 the following:

`2339. Harboring or concealing terrorists.'.

ya'll just gotta read the rest... let us keep those who are suffering in mind, and stay strong amongst the forces...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

art as liberation: why 'the wiz' is so important to us

in this discussion of universal's logo, life is not left without its ironies- the first text you see after the logo is 'a motown production'. this irony works in two ways: (a. the acquisition of motown by MCA/universal in 1988(thus no longer deeming it a 'black owned company') and (b. this is considered in lieu of motown's original philosophy in and of itself- to make black music and personalities palatable to white america.

so... to hear the opening of the score amidst the 'universal' logo (which to me, obviously delivers the sentiment of the blues), and then to see 'a motown production' placed over a cityscape painting with only the faces of people most likely descended from african slaves- black people- i can't do anything but scratch my head and laugh.

(side note in two ways: despite any socio-political philosophies i may not agree with when it comes to him, quincy jones is arguably one of the greatest arrangers/composers/producers out there. 'the wiz', to me, is an amazing piece of cinematic musical documentation. 2nd note: the choreography is by louis johnson; can i assume he is NOT 1/2 of the brothers johnson, and the same person who co-authored 'get on the floor' with the MJ?)

nonetheless, as lumbia the cat (my favourite person in the whole world) was sitting with me watching the film (michael is the only musical artist she will tolerate; she is more of a book person) i was thinking about the perceptions of that false concept we've all been conditioned to believe exists- race. since i have been just as conditioned by it, i am going to speak of the film in relation to it. it has been noted that berry gordy relinquished his responsibility as producer and gave it to rob cohen (apparently, gordy was championing for stephanie mills to play the role of dorothy like she did in the broadway version, but diana ross was also fighting for the role. by 1978 gordy and ross' relationship had been strained, and he decided to remove himself from the production. ross won the role.) so... was the 'motown productions' association a capitalistic attempt to win audiences (one of my main gripes with the company), or did gordy still oversee some of the production, despite not being credited?

joel schumacher wrote the screenplay, dede allen (one of the best) had editing duties, and sidney lumet (my favourite american director) was behind the cameras. this occurred before stephen spielberg attempted to capture a certain 'black experience' with 'the color purple' (another film quincy jones scored). i never read of any debates surfacing around lumet's directing an all-black cast; however, the film did not do well at all upon its release, so any sort of major protest may not be on record. i do feel that ultimately, lumet did a good job- he did what any great director would do- taking one's own voice out of the situation and capturing the perspectives of the potentially empathetic audience. errol morris and abbas kiarostami are excellent in this skill as directors as well. lumet has proven this with films such as '12 angry men' and 'dog day afternoon'. even if these directors' voices do not dominate the film, there is still a quality they have which produces a sort of identification with their respective styles. also in lumet's films, not one character carries weight more than another; each character is central and crucial to the storyline. there are no true 'protagonists', in the traditional sense. just like life. his films teach us, in their own way, to not let judgements cloud our perception of a character.

now, onto the film... the overture which opens the film displays the variety- the vibrancy and the struggles of the communities in which black people historically have dwelled. the art on the brick wall, panning into the gate, then onto the brownstones... but when the overture of 'home' comes on, my eyes water. you see people (who are not yet introduced by name) prepare for a gathering. it is a place bustling with love and togetherness. despite the visual mood, the harmonica solo (by toots thielmans) gives it a solemn texture. this is when we are introduced by name, to dorothy. diana ross (as dorothy) looks great here, and she gives the character a warmth that she was not able to give when she portrayed mahogany, or billie holiday. it's also total proof she doesn't need all that make-up and hair. her natural beauty shines here, with little make-up, and a short afro.

in the scene where we are formally introduced to dorothy she is one of few words. she appears to be a calming presence, amongst all the yelling and excitement. this scene to me, is one of the reasons this film has become a favourite amongst black viewers: the cultural identification with the family gathering; this makes us think of what could be perceived as 'home' that idyllic gathering of various minds with one purpose: to eat, drink and be festive... with the bustling of children and the matriarch to oversee it all.

but there is another side... like dorothy, so many of us feel isolated from that world. 'what am i afraid of/don't know what i'm made of' she sings, tears in her eyes. it's a sentiment shared amongst black people who do not particularly feel rooted in any one aspect of what is known as 'black culture'. with this, depression and loneliness may ensue. 'if i had to take a chance, would someone lead me' dorothy asks. the fear of going out into a new world can be paralysing, and it's extremely difficult to explain why. i empathise with dorothy's frustration. but through my own life's experience, auntie em (the matriarch) is right- one will never know what a full life's experience is like until one actually goes out and experiences it. and of coure, it takes none other than the wisdom of the non-humans for dorothy to experience leaving her comfort zone: if it were not for toto running out into the snowstorm dorothy would have never found her true potential. in this experience (also with the help of glenda)she began to face her fears.

this whole film is rife with timeless social commentary. when dorothy becomes trapped in the tornado and is then with toto is thrown onto the sandbox (representing her role as a kindergarden teacher) in a whole 'nother world she encounters some folks who were victim to repressive laws. without having any creative outlets, kids will create their own art, and their own movements. the scene where the characters were turned into graffiti on the walls due to 'evermean' the county commissioner's response to their creation of art on those walls will to me, forever be a nod to the creation of hip hop culture and its response to the city's treatment of predominately black and brown youth, and eventually the 'establishment's' efforts to squelch that culture. i remember when the new york city transit authority made the decision to place teflon on their cars, so there would be no art on them, and they would be easier to clean off. it was a sad moment in NYC history. dorothy soon meets up with number runners (and who didn't know somebody who ran the numbers?), cab drivers who suddenly decide to be off duty when you step to them (yup yup), and that darn paralysing fear.

next, dorothy meets the crows and the scarecrow. this is actually my favourite scene in the film, and it is a wonderful continuation of the ongoing theme: to never define yourself by cultural limitations. so many of us have been told that 'reading/questioning anything/listening to different types of music/need i go on' are suitable only for white folk, so if you so much as dare act/speak/dress different than what is perceived as 'black' you then have the desire to emulate 'white behaviour'. after experiencing and processing all of this, the scarecrow has become my proverbial hero.

michael jackson (who ELSE, ya'll) plays the scarecrow to such perfect effect. it's interesting to see him in this light, considering his own history with fighting for creative autonomy, even before 1978. he's always been considered 'different' or 'strange' as long as i can remember; he's changed the perceptions of race, class, gender, sexuality and celebrity in one fell swoop. for this i will forever admire him. in his role as the scarecrow you take note of his anxiety and isolation, as he moans 'you can't win' with the lifetime of hundreds of blues artists before him. his nod to the legacy of his musical ancestors is priceless, and his acknowledgement of the misfits of 'black culture' (thus extending to all cultures) must never be forgotten.

the scarecrow's low self-esteem (as we are introduced to him) is indicative of what we as black people have been consistently conditioned to adhere to: you can never succeed by virtue of being black, so don't even try. the crows (who sincerely believe this) attempt to drill this into the scarecrow's head... 'if you so much as THINK beyond where you are, you will be abandoning your culture.' if the educational system in this country prevails, then there is no existence of a toussaint l'overture; no nina simone, ossie davis, charles drew, curtis mayfield, afrika bambaataa, jamilah nasheed, maxine waters, shirley chisolm, sly stone, billy preston, james brown, herbie hancock, jimi hendrix, john henrick clarke, paul robeson, john coltrane, langston hughes, or no STEVIE WONDER. 'knowledge is power!' the scarecrow cries... go on, scarecrow! but you know what? the APPLICATION of that knowledge could shine a whole lot of suns. the scarecrow is the griot, the bearer of information that spans generations.

and let's not forget the eyes of the scarecrow... michael's eyes are my favourite thing about him. as the scarecrow, his sad eyes dart across the astoria studios soundstage, defiantly dancing to words he does not want to believe: 'you... can't... win.' not only does michael contribute to the legacy of his musical ancestors, but he also pays homage to theatre and cinema... all in the course of minutes, michael as the scarecrow takes you on a slapstick ride, evoking chaplin and keaton.

it's 40 minutes into the film, and we've come to meet the tin man. as i am watching this i am attempting to fathom why this film did so poorly when it was released. the character development and the pacing is some of the best of its kind. lumet has succeeded in taking time to explain each character with care. because of this, in a way he represents something of the 'anti-hollywood'.

and nipsey russell, as the tin man, has not yet even blinked. i will dare to say that the tin man represents the demystification of the age-old stereotypical pathology of black men- that they are indeed, heartless, responsibility-dodging, and just plain no good. of course, in this pathology they are that way because they have no feelings. if they do feel anything; if they cry or are forthcoming with emotions, this makes them less of a man. as nipsey russell (rest in peace, dear elder) wonders "if (he) can feel", i can't help but notice the look on michael/scarecrow's face- it's the look of empathy. it's fairly public news that michael is no stranger to tears- most notably his recording of 'she's out of my life', released approximately a year after this film's release. at the end of the ballad, he was crying. (and yeah, i paused this part of the film, and many others, to look at his eyes. and i'll do it again too! just you try to stop me)...

it's interesting to note that when the tin man begins to elaborate on the things he'd like to see himself doing and feeling, this is when he begins to blink. does blinking somehow represent emotion, or having a heart? i mention this because i noticed that al pacino does not blink too much either, as michael corleone in 'the godfather part II', unless he's feeling some sort of remorse, or sadness.

"and if tears should fall from my eyes/just think of all the wounds they could mend"... this is such a touching scene, and for me it represents the healing we truly need as black people right now. if we could feel; if we could empathize, share and listen with one another, would these generational and cultural gaps exist? that vulnerability the tin man speaks of is what is significantly missing from our culture. and like the tinman, we collectively have been "frozen in a position (he) had assumed all too often": hypersexual, a mammy, or a thug; roles that virtually relegate us to being devoid of true vulnerability.

52 minutes into the film we meet the lion. okay, i'm sure some of you know where i am getting at here... the lion, being the king of the (concrete) jungle, essentially gets emasculated and turned into a semi-iconic figure (aka 'a statue'). the lions in our world- malcolm x, patrice lumumba, martin luther king jr., cynthia mc kinney (to name a few of the most well-known) have either been assassinated or defined as insane. MLK even had a holiday named after him (reluctantly), after he could no longer speak. the lions are constantly cut down by being deemed 'too sensitive', 'not logical', 'too wild', 'reading too much into things', and all those lovely things that are given to black people who speak or act out. so, as in the lion's case, black people have had fear put into them... 'see what happened to malcolm? the kennedys? you besta hush yo mouth.' but, like those who ignore those taunts, the lion decides to fight back, gaining his confidence back from the forces that attempted to steal it.

forces like the 'land of poppy love'... perhaps i am being to much of a lion here (heh heh), but is this scene representing the government's set up of drugs in the black community, to keep us asleep? come on ya'll... i can't be reading TOO much into that, in light of everything that's been happening since the film's release... and further reading more into the context of this film (from a socio-political perspective) 'be a lion' to me is crucial, because it is a segway to the overall theme to the film: black power and autonomy. the ironic thing is that it took a white director to show us this, amidst all the so-called 'blaxploitation cinema' in existence in hollywood and beyond at the time. "in your own way, be a lion" dorothy sings. as shown thus far in 'the wiz', we must uphold the various qualities of 'us', creating a space for ourselves to block those who attempt to force these negative elements- be it drugs or otherwise- in our own way, on our terms. 'be a lion' makes me cry, and smile at the same time.

by 1 hour 13 minutes, these various aspects of our culture have been revealed. this is the collective identity of black people in a cinematic framework. obviously, all of us do not share the same qualities. but how many films do you see about black life that does something of this nature?

i am still waiting for an answer.

and so, we finally get to the land of oz... where if you're not seen green, you're nobody. and you "don't tell from your color(s)"... this is another argument... the one of the so-called 'american dream' of assimilation v. black nationalism or pan-africanist theory' (in my humble opinion, MLK was one of the last well-known black nationalists: someone who was truly an advocate for justice in america, yet looking for justice on black terms- just read or listen to his last few speeches)... if one is 'green' does ethnicity ultimately matter? must you relinquish your identity in order to be seen as a full person by so-called white mainstream society (without that society relinquishing any of ITS identity)?

ah, the wiz... the wiz. he's the quintesential politician, the general manager, the C.E.O., the chairman of the board; that inaccessible one who everyone swears is just right but deep down he has got it all wrong. when anyone stands up to this person we cannot even see a shock runs through the walls of the nation, because you know what happens to people who speak up...

the wiz (played perfectly by richard pryor) to me, essentially represents all the qualities we are told we're supposed to have: no heart, no brains (we are introduced to him as a machine) and no courage (he cannot face the people). he wants dorothy to do his dirty work, which is to kill evillene (played by mabel king, who was also in the play's adaptation of 'the wiz'). evillene runs a sweat shop (literally) and is the one (politically speaking) who was planted to maintain the community's collective sleep (the crows make another appearance here). i mean, evillene's even holding a whip... and when evillene melts away (she's allergic to water) it's a 'brand new day', where the "sun is shining just for us", where the day would come when "we'd be free somehow". when that pesky oppression has ceased, we can once again form a collective unity, and "we can show the world that we've got liberty", living "so independently." the day we come to "check it out" we will then leave our dependence on white supremacist ideology behind. these are some of the best pan-africanist sentiments in popular music, thanks to a certain luther vandross... thank you, man. you will not be forgotten.

and at 1:48, michael/scarecrow (my hero) does this absolutely phenomenal spin... oh, so breathtaking. the choreography in this film is amazing.

by 1 hour 52 we see that the wiz has seen a brand new day as well... the politician who could never get elected to public office (herman smith from atlantic city) has let his guard down. this could be attributed to dorothy speaking up to him, something so one else has ever done. the scarecrow (ah...), clearly upset at the wiz being a fraud, responds, "public office is the last refuge of the incompetent!" tell it, scarecrow! therein lies the cynicism of sydney lumet (and so many others): politicians, and those assumed to be in a position of 'power' (even though they have none, as herman has stated about himself) are essentially cowards, so they value ways to maintain domination over the people, be it by violence or de facto censorship. it's easy for some folks behind a desk to summon a group of citizens to murder people in a 'far away land' without having to experience that moment yourself.

in the midst of herman's revelation we once again encounter glenda, the good which of the south (played with warmth by lena horne). glenda was the one, unbeknownst to dorothy, to bring her to the point she gone to by the film's conclusion. the south was a point of travel for so many of our ancestors; it is where so many of our (american) customs lie, before we traveled up north. the south is where we convene- the link between africa and america. america has disengaged us from our language and lineage, over time. glenda, to me, is that acknowledgement of us finding ourselves once again, so we can go back into that cruel world with a new (but not so new) knowledge, and move forward with fearlessness, and love for ourselves and our communities."if we know ourselves, we're always home, anywhere" glenda sings.

and that, my friends, is where home is.

and home... 'home'. the second stephanie mills opens her mouth to sing that song, streams of tears pour down my face. but in writing this and truly thinking about what this extra-special film means to me, diana's rendition makes me cry as well. when she says 'goodbye' to her three friends, my eyes... my eyes. oh, my eyes.

"success, fame and fortune. they're all illusions." so says the scarecrow (this time, quoting himself as opposed to other well-known philosophers); this is the thing which has not been passed onto us as a community. evillene still lurks, under the guise of entities such as viacom. in the eyes of society, we will never adhere to dorothy's wish of "letting people see who (we) really are." we find our comforts in the safety of being 'green', under the hot lights in studios and dance floors, and under make-up and fancy dress.

but i've come to a realization as well, as to why the film did not do so well: despite the screenplay, direction and main production being done by white males (and editing done by a white female), they are behind the scenes. what is missing in front of the camera is quite obvious- every single character in the film is black. to this day (as danny glover can attest to in his quest to cinematically tell the story of toussaint l'overture) white audiences are reluctant to support a film that does not have at least one main white protagonist. people understandably want to see themselves represented on the screen. however, there are HUNDREDS if not THOUSANDS of films with no one but white faces, and i see not complaint or protest from the white community. i cannot tell you how many times people have attempted to cut me down in my critique of john hughes' films, for his lack of anything but white faces in much of his work. well, you know what? if you don't wanna see things from anyone else's perspective but your own, then you are not needed. people like haile gerima did not need you, and no one else should need you, if you refuse to leave your comfort zone.

it's a brand new day.

"no one can change the path that you must go"... we must constantly tell ourselves this. we must believe in ourselves, and pass that onto our children, and our children's children. we must stand firm in the midst of all the negative energy. we have to believe in the strength that already exists within us, because "the time will come around when (we) say it's (ours)." it's always been our time, and we've got to acknowledge that in order to make it a reality.

"believe in yourself, 'cos i believe in you."