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New Breed of Patriots Speaking Up

Hope Marston helped get the Eugene City Council to endorse a resolution opposing the USA Patriot Act.
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 http://www.bordc.org/links.html?134,4

New Breed of Patriots Speaking Up
Grass-roots efforts to rein in the anti-terrorist USA Patriot Act gain support. Eugene, Ore., and other cities formally oppose aspects of law.
By Scott Martelle
Times Staff Writer

December 8 2002

EUGENE, Ore -- EUGENE, Ore. -- Hope Marston keeps the seeds of revolution in four plastic crates stacked on the planked floor of her overcrowded bungalow here at the southern edge of this left-leaning college town.

There are pamphlets and petitions, news stories and political analyses, all part of Marston's battle against what she sees as the excesses of the USA Patriot Act, a sweeping federal law enacted after last year's terrorist attacks that broadens the government's ability to use secret searches, wiretaps and other covert surveillance techniques in the pursuit of terrorists.

While the law's defenders say average citizens have nothing to fear, civil libertarians like Marston believe the law opens the door for government agents to resume the kind of domestic spying that flourished under J. Edgar Hoover, when affiliation with radical ideas was enough to get someone a place in the FBI's secret files.

"We don't know how many people have had their homes searched, or their library or bookstore records checked," said Marston, a part-time secretary who launched the Eugene campaign after reading about similar efforts elsewhere. "People were amazed that there was something they could do locally."

Under pressure from a campaign that drew together liberals and Libertarians, Democrats and even a few Republicans, the Eugene City Council recently joined a growing list of local governments calling for a full or partial repeal of the Patriot Act, part of a nascent nationwide effort organizers hope will persuade Congress to undo the law.

Last week, city councils in Sebastopol, about 50 miles north of San Francisco, and Burlington, Vt., joined with their own resolutions, and activists are busy in Pasadena, Santa Barbara and at least eight other California communities.

The campaign began in November 2001 in Northampton, Mass., although the first cities to pass resolutions were Ann Arbor, Mich., and Denver, said Nancy Talanian, one of the Massachusetts organizers. So far, 17 cities have passed resolutions, and campaigns are underway in at least 50 cities in 25 states.

Organizers hope that by marshaling the voices of locally elected officials, they can better pressure Congress.

"Resolutions passed by elected local leaders carry a lot more weight than letters from individual citizens," Talanian said.

Still, the resolutions are largely symbolic, as local governments have no authority over federal laws or issues. The campaign echoes the grass-roots efforts of a generation ago in which local groups lobbied cities to declare themselves nuclear-free zones, a largely symbolic show of hands of those opposing the development, use, transport and storage of nuclear weapons.

"The most important aspect is to build a national consortium, a groundswell, and by making these somewhat symbolic resolutions cities are taking a stand," said Brian Michaels, a Eugene attorney who helped draft the local resolution. "You do what you can to slow these things down."

The resolutions differ from place to place, each tailored to local political concerns. But most call for the federal government to reveal what local acts they've taken under the USA Patriot Act, and demand that Congress either repeal the law or revoke some of its elements allowing domestic spying.

In Eugene, home to the University of Oregon and a cross-section of liberal political groups, the City Council added its own spin by ordering no city resources -- people or money -- be used to assist in "unconstitutional activities."

It's unclear whether that means Eugene police will reject requests for help by federal agents, though the department was one of several last year that refused to cooperate with a federal sweep of 5,000 men of Middle Eastern descent.

Since the unanimous vote, City Council members have fielded e-mails and phone calls from people -- mostly from outside Eugene -- deriding the decision as unpatriotic.

"Some of them said, 'Now we know where Al Qaeda is hiding: in the City Hall,' " said Councilwoman Betty Taylor, who introduced the measure. "But then we got some that said we made them proud to be American."

Marston said she was pleased by the breadth of the campaign's support locally.

"They are people who want to defend freedom, and it crossed the political spectrum," Marston said. "We have people who are way on the right saying we want to catch bad guys, too, but we don't want to be spied on in the process."

The pivotal vote on the eight-member council came from Gary Pape, a self-described pro-business, conservative Republican whose support set the stage for the City Council's unanimous vote. Pape said he took little notice when Congress passed the Patriot Act but became troubled by some of its elements after Marston's group began lobbying for the resolution.

"It's overly broad, overbearing and overly intrusive," said Pape, adding that he had not read the entire 342-page act -- and doubts that many federal legislators did either. "I've reviewed parts of it that deserve some real scrutiny.... Parts of it need to get into court, where they are more skilled and adept at constitutional issues than city councils."

At the heart of the challenge are elements of the USA Patriot Act that grant federal investigators wide latitude in "foreign intelligence surveillance."

That authority was backed last month by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, which overturned a ruling that Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft was using the Patriot Act to improperly broaden the FBI's spying abilities.

Under the act, federal investigators can secretly enter homes, plant wiretaps, search computers and take other investigative steps if they believe someone is connected with foreign terrorists. The act also makes it illegal for anyone who has been served a warrant under the act -- such as bookstore owners or librarians -- from talking about it.

"I'm glad I live in a city where we have spoken up against it," said Jeremy Nissel, co-owner with his wife of J. Michaels Books in downtown Eugene. "It's a bad law."

His wife, Linda Ellis, described the local vote as "an act of courage," and disputed that it could be viewed as unpatriotic.

"There are as many flags on cars in Eugene as there are in New York City or Downey," Ellis said, adding that post-attack emotions might have clouded Congress' judgment. "We feel like we have to rubber-stamp everything because of the things that happened in New York City and internationally. And I think that's a very dangerous thing."

If you want other stories on this topic, search the Archives at latimes.com/archives. For information about reprinting this article, go to www.lats.com/rights.

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Copyright 2002 Los Angeles Times
and where did you read it first? 09.Dec.2002 01:07

indy reader

right here on this site, weeks ago, when it happened. i liked the articles here better than this one, too.

of course... 09.Dec.2002 07:48

PDX BoRDC Info info@portland-or.bordc.org

Of course, the rest of the country doesn't care what gets posted to IMC. But they might care about what gets printed in the LA Times.


reply to 'PDX BoRDC Info' 09.Dec.2002 10:05

indy activist

depends on which "rest of the country" that you mean.

if you're looking for fellow activists/organizers to help you with your cause, IMC is a much better way to get the word out than the LA Times:

1. activists/organizers read and post to IMC. ideas can be shared, and help offered from around the national community.

2. activists/organizers like yourself can get your story onto IMC as you *want* it to appear, and won't have some corporate editor or institution put their spin on it

3. activists/organizers can make an explicit call-to-action or plea-for-help on IMC, which the corporate media will rarely relay.

as for people in the country who aren't activists, how many of them *do* care what's in the LA Times really? being born and bred in the midwest i can tell you that most folks there don't give a whit about what the big city papers on the coasts print or don't print. that being said, i understand that the LA Times is one of those papers like the NY Times that helps drive what gets printed in the corporate press in the midwest papers.

the way this particular article has been bounced around the listserves and posted to IMC i can see that the organizers are very happy that the LA Times printed it. but i'll tell you quite plainly that -- as an activist/organizer myself -- i have no interest in begging for crumbs from the tables of the corporations and then celebrating when i get a bite that isn't entirely poisonous. the LA Times and its ilk exist to protect and prop up the powers-that-be, and they will never do anything that would actually harm those powers or call them into real question. every once in awhile, an article like this will slip through, but it is not enough. in fact, it's probably dangerous because now some activists/organizers will keep putting loads of energy into trying to get their story into the corporate press because they can point to an article like this and say, "it wasn't so bad".

i'll tell you what -- i ain't settlin' for "not so bad" in this life, for myself or for my brothers and sisters being oppressed around the world. i want the BEST and that's what i'm going to work for. the LA Times will never give us the best -- which is to say, they'll never give us what we deserve. who will give us what we deserve? *we* will. we must no longer depend on these corporate voiceboxes to spread the word for us -- they do a lousy f'n job of it, and they are usually destructive. do you really think that one little article in the LA Times is going to make a difference when the rest of the coverage is pro-war, pro-corporation, and pro-fascism? for people who get their news only from the corporations, it will make little difference at all.

instead, we must get as many people as possible reading IMC, listening to KBOO, reading the Alliance, and doing all of these things in their own towns all across the country (and the world). how did word of this Bill of Rights campaign spread? through the corporate press? no. activists have been using their own communication networks -- email, IMC, other websites -- to educate each other, and inspire one another, and to help each other out, and *that's* why the campaign won in eugene. NOT because of corporate press coverage somewhere. people power is where it's at, people, and the LA Times is *not* for the people.

i'll quote a young woman from the portland public schools student activist alliance, who said about the corporate press: "they have an arrangement called i'll scratch your back and you scratch mine." that says it well. she also said, about the corporate media's lack of coverage of the peace movement: "it's not their job". no, it's not, and we won't be able to make it their job. it's *our* job to get our truth out, *our* job to tell our stories, *our* job to save ourselves -- not some corporation's.

So, "PDX BoRDC Info" -- I say all of this because the continued dependence on corporate media by some activists/organizers is so harmful that it is pathological. it's like battered-wife syndrome. "well maybe he won't hit me *this* time." maybe you'll get a good story *this* time, but don't count on it. instead, help build up the new media of the Resistance, and get other people plugged into it. the only way we'll save the world is if we save ourselves, and the LA Times has no interest in that goal.

Action, Please! 09.Dec.2002 11:01

anne frank

Let's stop arguing about what is the better and get to work--publicity is useful from every source.

reply to anne frank 09.Dec.2002 11:54

indy activist

i disagree that publicity from every source is useful, after one takes into account the amount of work and energy that goes into getting it.

i see so many activists spending loads of time (sometimes even the majority of it) trying to get their issues or events covered by corporate media. the following things then happen:

1. corporate media doesn't show up
2. corporate media shows up but doesn't run story
3. corporate media runs story and it sucks
4. corporate media runs story and it's "not so bad"
5. corporate media runs story and it's "great" (actually i've never heard of this happening, but maybe it does).

when the first three happen, any time spent trying to get the corporate media there was completely wasted. this time could've been spent flyering, postering, getting on KBOO, posting to IMC, phoning or emailing, or any number of other things that would get people out to the event or into an issue and get them active. (and isn't activating people the purpose of activism?) when the 4th happens, the "not so bad" story is quickly lost in the morass of definitely bad stuff the rest of the corporate media does. the above mentioned outreach still hasn't happened, and within 24 hours the story is gone. what has improved? maybe something, but not much.

IMC (and KBOO and other participatory independent media projects) are about Empowerment. the corporate media is about disempowerment and social control. IMC is about telling your story yourself with a truth that will ring like no "objective" story ever will, and which will bring far more people into the fold if it gets out. the corporate media is about spinning your story in the most profitable place, regardless of what you say or do. they don't care. and time spent talking to them is wasted. time spent building new channels of communication, on the other hand, is entirely fruitful and has had tangible results here in portland.

do you want to be free or not?

because the corporate media publicity will not free you or anyone who watches it. their intent is to control and they won't (consciously anyway) do anything to risk letting people out of that control.

so, no, anne, i won't "stop arguing". i'm serious about making the best of this world and not just making do with "not so bad". we all deserve much better than that, and we'll get it once we actually go out and grab it. and that means boycotting the corporate media and creating our own.

Publicity 09.Dec.2002 13:02

Raven

The approach i recommend is to work hard, and not be at all concerned about what coverage if any, corporate media is giving. There is only a negative result to prostitute oneself to the corporate media and this happens way too much. It is a position of weakness and slavery.

Individuals, and groups of people working in the true spirit of dedication, joy, self sacrifice and fundamental freedom, will get noticed, will get written about. . .

A political mindset, is what everyone is sick of, and it negates the natural spontaneity and innate freedom that people hunger for.

Real freedom, that spark of untamed wild spirit, has a lovely fragrance, and is attractive and people from all walks of life will come around, and will talk about it, cause inside, that is what everyone wants.

Yes and... 09.Dec.2002 14:29

af

I'll keep organizing in my little town and inviting the local newspaper to participate, which it does on a fairly regular basis now. I will continue to use all media resources available in the area. And I do believe that publicity is positive. The more mentions of Phillip Berrigan, the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, antiwar protests, sit-ins, and prison witnessing by everyone from students to 88-year-old nuns, the better.

There is one member of our community who makes regular calls to the right-wing radio talk show in town to challenge the other callers and the moderator. This kind of action is essential, and I'm glad he has the stomach for it, becaus eit does make a difference.

Hope Marston is not"selling out" by allowing an interview by an LA Times reporter. Her story and others like it has a big impact on how a lot of people feel about the whole idea of dissent. Keep in mind that most are not as aware or impassioned as yourself, but might be interested in getting involved more with their communities if they had an idea of how they could be effective. We need to get past the idea that some people are too conservative or unhip to be involved in "our" movement. Or maybe it is too late and the system is too broken and the only solution is to destroy whatever social fabric that remains and deem humans a failed experiment and just blow ourselves up. But it does seem like working with one another in local communities and persisting and being vocal and "being the media" in our cities and towns is worth a try. Inclusion might be more useful in this effort than exclusion. Indymedia is a wonderful thing, and its audience is widening, and most people still get their "news" from the local paper and think the NYT and LA Times and Washington Post are the most credible sources. They are not, we know it, and we have to work on every level to get the word out. And one way is through those very papers and through those reporters.

let's clarify 09.Dec.2002 18:52

PDX BoRDC Info info@portland-or.bordc.org

Well, I wasn't speaking about activists (although there are activists or potential BoRDC campaigners out there who have never heard of IMC). There are two parallel campaigns being waged here: One is the ground-level battle to convince as many local governments as possible to pass anti-PATRIOT Act resolutions. The other is (and I know this tends to be an obscene concept in these parts) the public opinion, public perception, public relations battle. And if anyone thinks that's not an important component, they will be deluding themselves.

In part, this is because if we end up in a situation where 50 cities pass such resolutions, but the mainstream press either ignores, trivializes, or demonizes the movement, then it's all a wasted effort and can't be used to build up from the local government level to the Congressional delegation level -- which is part of the overall objective the national movement.


reply to 'af' 09.Dec.2002 20:19

indy activist

just for the record, i did not accuse Hope Marston of "selling out". Hope wrote not one but two accounts of the triumphant City Council meeting in Eugene right after it happened and posted them here. A center column feature was the result. Both her accounts *were* better than the LA Times story above, too. They were fresher, brighter, and contained much more truth and inspiration. The sort of thing an activist like me reads and thinks, "Hmmm, we oughta work on that here, too!" the LA Times article means nothing to me, and its use of the word "patriotic" totally turns me off. I also know the situation and issue well enough to know what a shallow gloss job it is. Does it really say what's going on and what the stakes are and how much our ability to live free lives is being affected by the USA PATRIOT Act? Not at all.

And, I reiterate: Which will be more effective in inspiring activists around the country to fight this same battle in their own towns? This one LA Times article, or the continuing spreading of the word and ideas through our own activist channels, including IMC? Clearly, the latter. There's more of it, and it's more honest.

I'm afraid that part of the reason the LA Times article is so popular with some activists is because they can feel like they "made the big time" by having their issue in that paper. And that's just ego. And again, I'm not referring to Hope in particular here, as I know her, and don't believe she operates that way. I'm just saying: in addition to other concerns about corporate media, beware that you are not attracted to it because of its star-making power. We don't need that shit in the movement.

media 09.Dec.2002 20:29

deva

"Or maybe it is too late and the system is too broken and the only solution is to destroy whatever social fabric that remains and deem humans a failed experiment and just blow ourselves up."

even if it is too late, that does not mean one should give up. . .it is necessary to keep working for positive change simply because it is the right thing to do.

that said, it is not 'too late'. . .that phrase has no real meaning. . .social collapse may be inevitable at this point, but even then something will grow from it. . .all things die and new life is born and seeds planted may well produce great beauty down the road

of course Hope Marston is not a sell out for doing an interview. a point i would make is not that any effort to work through the mainstream media cannot have some positive effect, but rather that i believe that the same amount of effort in other directions can be more fruitful, and at this point is more fruitful as a general course. . .i would further suggest that the articles Hope put on indymedia, and the other grassroots efforts she makes are far more significant and deserve attention far more than one article in the LA Times. . .

corporate media is not going to provide the sort of reporting that will empower individuals and the society towards positive change. . .they are controlled and dominated by the interests of corporate power and are never going to be the instrument of change. . .daily they work very hard to deter the very change we seek

so again i would make the point that it is not that doing an interview is wrong, but that sitting in any manner, and waiting for the status quo and all its institutions to make the needed changes is a recipe for disaster. . .we need more people to put their resources, time and energy and full dedication to bring a change. . .the corporate media is one of the greatest tools of oppression ever devised

my two cents 09.Dec.2002 21:32

john worth

The stories posted here may have been better, but the LA Times story was probably read by a couple hundred thousand, and it was POSITIVE. It didn't act like some papers, which treat all dissent as unpatriotic unless it furthers some corporate agenda. So the LA Times story is GREAT!!! We, the patriots, need everybody we can get, and that's not going to happen by turning down POSITIVE coverage just because we don't like the source. Let's be inclusive.

all publicity is good 09.Dec.2002 22:03

tom

If you are trying to sell an idea, you want to get it out as many ways and in as many places as possible. It is never possible to tell what seeds will grow when you broadcast them.

Therefore, it is silly to argue whether IndyMedia is "better" than something else-- all publicity is good. Waiting for the "best" is defeatist. The perfect is the enemy of the merely good.

readership: LA Times vs. Indymedia 09.Dec.2002 22:13

gimme the numbers

You're assuming that the LA Times has more readers than IMC. Do you know that's true? Can you show stats for both? I'm serious here. I know for a fact, for example, that more people nationwide hear about some portland events through IMC than through the local corporate press here. the oregonian, for example, might have more hits here in portland, but could very well have fewer around the world, due to the international appeal of IMC.

i saw stats at one time, for example, that showed that the IMC network gets more hits than Newsweek online. so be careful what kind of assumptions you make.

AND -- which readership counts for more? an activist readership that might DO something after it reads coverage, or a non-activist readership that goes, "oh that's nice" and then returns to life as normal and never does anything? good publicity counts for nothing by itself. what actions result?

corporate media=war machine 09.Dec.2002 22:18

stockbreaker

May i remind you of the close relationship between the defense industry and corporate media? By supporting corporate media, you are supporting the bomb and missile makers. When people buy the corporate newspaper that has your "great" or "not so bad" article in it, they are giving their money to the war machine. Pure and simple. So tell me, if we compare the profit made by the corporate owners of the LA Times to the amount of intangible (and probably less than you'd like) positive effect generated by this one article, which is greater? Which is greater over time, when nearly every other day the LA Times prints NO "great" articles?

"But I can't leave him. How will I live without him? Sometimes he says sweet things when he's not hitting me."

Its all about money 09.Dec.2002 22:23

tom

Indymedia may have more hits than the LATimes or Newsweek.

But LAT readers have more money, and that's what Congress listens to.

Actually, now it seems that Congress is irrelevant. And it takes practically the whole universe of money to talk to Bush.

So we can sit around and congratualate (or flagellate, depending on your mood) each other, but the real work is done in the mainstream, not the alternative world. Even if many of the ideas were originally hatched there

what's 'mainstream'? 10.Dec.2002 00:26

wondering

as an activist, i use the word 'mainstream', too, but rather carefully these days, as i'm not sure what it means. is that a class term? a race term? an education-level term? a place of residence term?

the closest thing to the mainstream i've seen recently was this event:

"800 rally in support of St. Francis and Measure 28; against social service cuts"
 http://portland.indymedia.org/front.php3?article_id=37383&group=webcast

it was mixed racially, mostly white but with a sizeable african american percentage (that is, higher than the percentage in population here in portland), and latinos, too. it was mostly working class, not professional. cues taken from style and quality of clothing suggested income levels that were not high. it was also clear that unhealthy diets were prevalent (and i say that with full compassion as i am well aware of how addictive high-sugar/high-fat junk food diets are in this country, and how little knowledge there is of healthy food and eating) and lack of physical activity (pointing to a lot of t.v. viewing, perhaps, and again i mention this with compassion for the addictive quality of that evil box, and i fight nearly full time against the corporate powers-that-be that use it as their propaganda tool).

and actually, these attributes all probably made it "mainstream" in a meaningful sense. that is, white college educated people who read the LA Times are not the majority in this country, and i wouldn't consider them the "mainstream". that class is not the ruling class either, but styles itself that way in many of its habits and pretensions, and often considers itself the mainstream. but if you want to break it down, the plurality of people in this country are working-class people without a college degree (across racial lines). that's who was out at this event.

Do they read the LA Times? statistically, this mainstream -- the *real* maintream -- gets its news from t.v. predominantly, and many of them get most of their news from late night comedians, not even news shows. does the LA Times filter through David Letterman and into the steelworker? perhaps a little, but i don't think Eugene's accomplishment will get there that way. will indymedia reach any of these people? if indymedia activists here have anything to do with it, some of them will. hopefully some of the people there will *become* indymedia activists -- that is, begin reading and posting to the site. can they participate in the LA Times? in the Oregonian? on KATU? they can call a few radio shows, but there's limitations there. if a participatory (and fun) medium like indymedia can be introduced to people who are starving for self-expression (which i believe most Americans are -- look at all the christmas lights coming out right now!) then indymedia will thrive (even more) and they, the people using it, will thrive more too.

what indymedia offers is something that the LA Times will *never* do, because it's not in their interest to do it. in other words, there is more potential for positive change in truly open and democratic projects that come up from the grassroots than in everything the corporate machine has. if we actually commit to making real change, and providing real alternatives, and making them grow, we have a real chance of getting somewhere. as long as we insist on returning over and over to things that abuse us and that exist to bring about our demise, we will remain mostly ineffective, and won't really reach much of anyone.

here's what's attractive: freedom

here's what's freeing: love

here's what's loving: action

corporate media is part and parcel of corporate power -- the same power that makes war, builds prisons, sells poison, and tells us all the while that we want to be self-destructive because it will make us happier. the corporate powers are liars. their intent is to control and to profit. they exist in opposition to freedom, love and action. if you think that this LA Times article -- which is one tiny bitter drop falling soundlessly into a noisy sea of lies -- is really going to make a difference, then i ask you now to really think about it carefully and honestly. it might be unpleasant to think about how meaningless it actually is, but this fact must be recognized and accepted.

corporate media really is a disease and its untruths spread like a contagious virus. it is a poison that must be resisted. i believe the best protection is abstinence, but i know that's not a popular concept in our culture. :) i also believe the best cure is independent media in all its forms, whether its online IMC, on-the-air KBOO, or a xeroxed flyer that a punk kid staples to a telephone pole. the truth is in *us* the people, and it is up to us to share it, at the top of our lungs, through webpage, loudspeaker, and broadsheet. truth makes a joyful noise, and the sound of it will draw others nearer. and when they see that they too can broadcast their voice, they will want to join in. it is up to us, the activists, to help create these forums where people can be their own news-tellers again, and to share them freely, show them how to use them, and then to step aside so their words can ring free on their own.

i am speaking about empowerment. any tactic or strategy that is not about empowerment is pointless. the population of this country feels trapped and hopeless and it makes them angry and unreasonable. we must help be liberators, and we cannot trust the corporate media to do that for us. they won't. they just won't. this process starts with liberating ourselves, leeching the poison from our own brains, and feeling how wonderful it is to breath and think clearly when the muddle's been cleared away. the happier we make ourselves, the more people will see it, and want to be part of it. and when they join us, the "us" will change, and a new "us" will emerge -- if we are open to it.

when you're talking about the People Vs. Corporate Power, there's already more of us than them. it's just that "us" aren't together yet. and the LA Times ain't gonna do it. but indymedia can be part of it. for sure, and for real, but only if we work on it, and on other methods of empowerment.

we ain't gonna ever win with money. we'll never be able to get that much together, and that wouldn't be a victory event if we could. but if you have enough love, you don't need money.

let's be free.

let's love.

let's act.

if we really do that, we'll have no problem attracting "the mainstream" because we'll be happy -- *actually* happy -- and that's what everyone's looking for.

to you, for us 10.Dec.2002 01:09

john worth

I wonder what the readership is of Portland Indymedia. The LA Times has a readership in the seven figures. Well, the Sunday edition is estimated at 1.4 million, anyway. So I'd love to know how many people visit Portland Indymedia daily. Or the whole of Indymedia. Regrettably, I can't give you those numbers.

You raise an interesting point about which readers are more important to reach. Ultimately, they are BOTH important to reach. If I had to choose people to affect change with, I'd choose the Indy readers since I feel like we're proven activists, but if I were trying to reach new people who didn't already know about Bill of Rights Defence Committees, then I'd pick the LA Times to spread the word. When an activist is an activist, that's no new member to the group. When a person BECOMES an activist, the group has grown. We need to reach not just us, but new people.

To stockbreaker: You're right about the connection. I don't buy the paper. But when we're talking about a pre-existing market, as in people who already buy the paper regardless, your point becomes irrelevant. These people are already supporting the war machine. The war machine doesn't get more money just because one day they decide to print a cool article that's not on the front page. And if the readers join OUR side, then they may STOP supporting the war machine--so in that sense printing the article may HURT the war machine.

To wondering: Fabulous perspective! Not that you asked for my opinion on this, but I would define the "mainstream" in this context as those who go get their news from corporate sources and might not know about alternate viewpoints.

But don't think that I discount the importance of Indymedia coverage. I love Indymedia that's why I'm here! And I also love the ADDITIONAL coverage given by the LA Times that didn't harm the coverage given here.