Breaking News. Hobby Lobby Supreme Court Case ruling. WARNING: Extremely (Dangerously) Explicit Language.

A note: The corporate owned news will package and coat the news for you. Sometimes it is important to give the news in the context under which it is warranted, with language that denotes the ultimate in honest analysis. At Revolution and Beer we believe in the power of language. Today’s Supreme Court decision required that sort of honesty, since it represents yet another move towards a fascism of law, policy and culture that favors the wealthy, the powerful and those who are willing to use both to subvert the constitution and roll back the clock on gains that would have this nation truly be a nation of, by and for all of the people. It moves us much farther away from the ideal of respecting and protecting the diversity of this nation in favor of one religion and one race. Our official position on that at Revolution and Beer is…BULLSHIT! new-supreme-court-robes

Suck it, Americans! In a 5 to 4 decision the Supreme Court loudly proclaimed a resounding “fuck you” to non-Christians, and gave a categorical “fuck yeah” to religious tests for corporations. The Supreme Court, which had previously said “blow me” to the constitution and a government by the people and of the people with the Citizen’s United ruling proved that it is possible to speak while simultaneously fellating a corporation and still bone the overage working class and poor citizen. In today’s ruling, they added a specific type of hypocritically hate-motivated Christianity, add yet another dimension to that anti-freedom threesome by pissing on the nation and calling it rain.

Here’s a thought, think this group of devils in dark robes would have come to the same decision if the case was brought by Ahmed’s House of Burqas, because Ahmed decided he wanted an exception to health care because there was a risk one of his employees or their female spouses might go to a male gynecologist? Right? How about it was Pablo’s Taco Emporium not providing contraception to white employees because someone in the church he went to south of the border decided there were already too many fucking white people, and they usually grow up to be racist assholes who commit genocide and become serial killers way more than any other race. The court would have run from that faster than if a monkey was flinging his shit around the court room.Inmates sew at a compulsory drug rehabilitation centre in Kunming

Ponder this: Once again, the law of unintended consequences prevails. Now, because I’m some fundamentalist Christian fuck, maybe I make my employees take a religious test to get hired. No non-believers here! How about a policy that women can clean the aisles and do the cash register at Hobby Lobby, but can’t be managers because women should always be subservient to their men? How about a Jehovah’s witness opts out of prenatal and birth care because in their fuck-face, backwards, 8th Century view of Christianity women should “enjoy” the pain of childbirth without medication (Insert Christian Science here as well)? What if Jimmy’s Jewish pest control service decides not to cover their Palestinian employees, cuz there are too many goddamned Palestinians, or vice versa? Maybe my religion doesn’t like dogs, so hey, blind asshole, fuck you and your mangy dog.

I thought this country was better. I thought people came to this country for safety and true freedom and not just the illusion of opportunity, instead of wallowing in some of the other shitholes of the world. Well, you know how those shitholes happened? BY TAKING THE SAME FUCKING ROAD THAT THIS NATION HAS NOW GONE DOWN! Those countries sucked the dick of the rich and powerful, turning their people into nations of peasants, or keeping that way in this perverse I got mine and you can eat shit, and if you complain we’ll fuck you over mentality. Corruption? Corruption is the powerful pissing on the population and turning them into a desperate mob, some animated by selfishness who, for a few trinkets from the powerful, will cut the throat of fellow peasants for speaking out against power. That’s why the Tea Party was created and now they all have to carry guns. It ain’t cuz their gonna shoot a colored who wants their cellphone, it is, ultimately, to fuck with you liberals and progressives and minorities should you dare open your mouth in any meaningful way. Welcome to the new fucking America.

And for those of you who take exception to the word peasants; look the fuck around! WE ARE A COUNTRY OF PEASANTS, BITCH…thanks to pro-corporate government policies, a minimization of the worker and citizen to the advantage of corporations, rampant consumerism, and a 40 year subversive effort to convince Americans voting and protest change nothing!

Fuck Hobby Lobby. I would not cross the street to piss on the owner’s quaffed hair-styles if they were on fucking fire! I haven’t set foot in that shithole, slave labor death store since they felt the need to wag their Christian dick in everyone’s face, Think of that, think of some poor starving Chinese brat, or some Thai girl who gets paid so little building Hobby Lobby’s cutesy fucking birdhouses that she has to prostitute herself because she doesn’t make enough to feed her kids. How about some teen girl in Indonesia getting routinely raped the next time you’re buying one of the cheap as dirt Christmas ornaments to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus. The Jesus, that is, who carrying a fucking AR-15, smacked the shit out of bitches when they forgot their place and believed that getting rich and fucking over the poor was the way to heaven. How’s that for a visual, huh?

How does your Walmart shirt fit? And you wonder why they grow up hating us?

How does your Walmart shirt fit? And you wonder why they grow up hating us?

To put it another way, in honor of the coming holiday: The supreme Court, one of three corporate wholly owned subsidiaries once known as the American government just stuck a Chinese–made Hobby Lobby firecracker up the ass of the nation and lit it in honor of the corporations who now own freedom and parcel it out peacemeal to the rest of us in the form of trash consumerism, status quo news, shitty pop culture and reality television. Happy fucking Fourth of July you cheap beer slobbering, processed food swilling Walmart wearing, Type II diabetes, dumb as bricks schmucks. America, yeah!

WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit www.revolutioandbeer.com

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Everything you know about World War I is a lie: On the hundredth anniversary?

Splash! I was standing in the very spot where 18 year old Gavrilo Princip fired his 1903 .32 caliber Colt at Archduke Ferdinand and his wife 84 years earlier. It had just rained, a string of storms that doused the Sarajevo valley, leaving the Miljacka River across the road rushing and ruddy from mountain runoff. Suddenly a dark blue VW Rabbit rounded the corner, hardly 5 feet away, splashing a puddle and soaking the front of my jeans. 16 years later that moment is as clear now as it was the moment it happened. All that has changed is the recrimination for being too surprised to yell something at the guy. 4608792098

I stepped across the oily puddle. The street there, the trees and old Mosque across the river, the narrow and cobblestoned Latin Bridge, arching lazily across the canaled river, the buildings along the river are surprisingly similar to how they appeared that day. There are scars from the most recent war. The city hall, where the Archduke visited that day, and from which he was leaving when assassinated had been gutted and still stood nearly in ruins a few blocks away. As I stepped into the street I acted out Princip’s fateful step that day. I could feel the tension as he lifted the gun from his side, feel the sweat of his palm on the grated metal grip, and feel the weight of the weapon.

I wondered, as he looked down the barrel, the Archduke’s open auto paused momentarily in front of him at the corner, was he focused on the royal couple or on the end of the pistol. One thing is certain, Princip held the weapon with relative confidence. He squeezed off two shots in quick succession. Both hit their mark. He was unaffected it seems by the explosion from the barrel and the kick of the weapon, which would have been small. Accounts have the young man calmly raising the gun to his head. In his trial, Princip was calm and forthcoming.

The 100th anniversary of the assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand, his wife and unborn child in Sarajevo has passed, both on the calendar and through the filter of false history. Too simply the killing is considered the start of the First World War. I use to brag about standing on the spot where the War started, culminating in the deaths of between 16 and 18 million people. It is not the place where the war began. On the 100th anniversary I have also heard musings on whether the war might have been avoided. Allow me to dispel just a few misconceptions.

First, the war was not inevitable, sort of. The Austrians would have preferred not to go to war against Serbia, but Germany pressed for war, promising to support the Austrians. The Germans feared pan Slavism binding Russia, Bulgaria and Serbia. The crafted with the Austrians a 10 point ultimatum which they believed the Serbian government would reject. It was an all or nothing demand. If the Serbs quibbled on even one of the points it would mean war. The ultimatum was a direct assault and violation of Serbian sovereignty. They could only refuse, or so the Germans believed. Instead the Serbs accepted 9 points and offered the 10th for international arbitration. The Germans pressed for war. War began, not because of Gavrilo Princip, but because of Germany. It began in July, on the 28th of July 1914 to be exact.

The Germans betrayed their Austrian cousins. They all but left the Austrians to fight a war on two fronts. Ultimately the Germans opened multiple fronts. The Serbs and Austrians slogged back and forth in the Serbian hills and mountains for 4 years.

The conspirators, including Princip, were not fanatic. Wild holding strong beliefs, they were more animated by politics and freeing fellow slavs from Austrian occupation. Vaso Čubrilović, an ardent Serbian nationalist, a professor at the University of Belgrade, was the last conspirator to pass away in Bosnia in 1990. Rather they were average young men, perhaps exceedingly so. My mother in law was close with his niece. Vaso liked his Turkish coffee and was understated when asked about his infamous background.

The war was phenomenally costly in terms of civilian deaths. Some 8 million innocents died. It is likely the number is much higher, owing to the rudimentary census and birth records. This number is overlooked in most history texts. Simply the number is misleading and used to mislead casual students of history. The mythology of the war is of troops slugging it out in more or less static muddy trenches. The war devastated Europe, caused mass starvation and disease and was notable for mass atrocities. Serbian civilians alone numbered almost 1million.

Details, right? Why quibble over details? But the details are important. They are critical to every war, and necessary to the memory and justice of every innocent killed. They are the facts and details of a crime, which is how we should view war. Not as some noble cause, but as a breakdown and failure in our humanity. Each of those victims is entitled to justice. For now justice only comes as an accurate record of the truth. Anything less, any simplification makes us all a party to a crime.

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GET OUT OF MY FACE! The Taliban-like assault on women’s sovereignty over their own bodies continues: Massachusetts abortion law struck down.

Fundamentalism won a victory today regarding a Massachusetts law making it a crime for anti-choice protesters to come within 35 feet of women entering so-called “abortion” clinics. The ruling will have a significant impact far beyond the abortion issue. In a unanimous ruling over the case McCullen v. Coakley, the Supreme Court struck down the Massachusetts law.

Pro-choice volunteers escort a women to a health clinic. Only 1 in 9 women visit these clinics for abortion related issues.

Pro-choice volunteers escort a women to a health clinic. Only 1 in 9 women visit these clinics for abortion related issues.

Once again the court in a short-sighted ruling has endangered women and the public by striking down a law that maintains a reasonable physical buffer between anti-choice harrassers and innocent women in vulnerable and high emotional circumstances. Only 1 of 9 women entering women’s health clinics are there for an abortion procedure or counseling. The supreme court struck down the Massachusetts law, calling it a violation of the First amendment. However, in the strictest application and definition of protest and the first amendment, the court sided with harassment and verbal assault instead of petition of grievances to the government or government officials.

Read the full unedited ruling here: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/13pdf/12-1168_6k47.pdf

There have been long held reasonable restrictions on appropriate and inappropriate speech. The FCC regularly enforces speech, which should fundamentally be challenged as a violation of the First amendment, since the FCC, a government entity is describing what may and may not be said with regards to public discourse. There are also laws regarding slander, inciting violence or panic, as in the yelling fire in a crowded theater example. So among private citizens there are already reasonable curbs to some forms of speech. This now removes distinction between private citizens and public officials.

While a blow for women’s rights regarding privacy and harassment by belligerent parties, it does remove constraints on activists and progressives who have been routinely pushed back from confronting politicians or protesting at events. As we have seen repeatedly presidents, congress people, events, hearings, foreign leaders and diplomats have been afforded buffers from protesters. This law would mandate and demand that protesters be afforded their first amendment right in getting as close to those officials as necessary to be heard. As necessary would be the perview of the protester, not the protestee, by the way. It would also open up their families to protest as well, since today’s ruling erases all distinction between public and private citizen.

What does that mean for you? There are provisions in the law that make certain types of intimidating speech a prosecutable offense as a type of assault. For example, if I scream hysterically or violently in your face or at your child I can be arrested and prosecuted for assault. In my extreme emotion, if spittle hits or falls on you, you could accuse me of assault. Now all of that, you and your child are now fair game for anyone wishing to “protest” against you. Anything can now be framed as a protest. Verbal assault now has been all but eliminated, excepting direct threats of violence.

In a word this ruling is an assault on public safety. For protesters of all stripes, the gloves come off. For better or worse that is the nation we now live in. Let the law of unintended consequences prevail. That is the peril of a court who considers issues in the short run rather than the long run.

WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit www.revolutioandbeer.com

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Revolution and Beer…of the week: Miller Lite and the pleasures of banality.

Kudos to Miller Lite! They’ve managed the impossible: removing taste from beer. It is a historic achievement, as for thousands of years the taste and ingredients of beer has been paramount to the brewer. Forget those foreigners and their insistence on flavor. Thanks to American innovation, taste and quality are a thing of the past, replaced by consistency and mass production. Normally at Revolution and Beer we review top quality craft and international beers. Today is a special day.i-dont-normally-use-beer-to-fill-my-toilets-but-when-i-do-its-miller-light

I’d recently suffered a head injury which prompted me to reach for a Miller Lite. Marketed for people who believe that “Light” is instead a four letter word, a proper Miller Lite tasting required just the right container. I have goblets, chalices, Weiss and Stout glasses, Ale glasses and steins for tastings, but nothing suitable to Miller Lite, which wouldn’t require flushing first. It needed to be perfect, in order to truly capture all of the subtly and nuance of Miller Lite. Obviously I thought a hat would be perfect.344592d1336775424-beer-carrying-spitfires-world-war-ii-1373436-beerhat_large

The beer poured to a pale golden hue, reminiscent of a dialysis patient on diuretics, and a delightfully thin head which disappeared faster than Casper the ghost in a camera flash. Immediately I sensed the aroma, which exhibited overtones of banality, with undertones of Lake Michigan water filtered through rice not destined for human consumption. The aroma reminded me of a muffler shop at closing time, with the awkward misogynist shouts of Russian middle-aged men calling after women on the sidewalk. Miller Lite boasts an ABV (alcohol by volume) just above a 4am belch after a police breathalyzer.

I do have to admit that it was a luxury not to have to think as I lifted the plastic tube to my mouth for that first gulp, not like those elitist craft beers. In fact, I actually could feel about two dozen IQ points dissolving at that moment. I was thrilled at the marvels of mass consumption, and that I was tasting precisely what 11 million other people similarly afflicted were swilling. Imagine massive tanks of what Miller can legally call beer so huge that a worker could drown in one without affecting the taste! Magnificent!light-beer-beer-bud-miller-lite-light-demotivational-posters-1340073929_zps6d8b1d99

So pick up a beer, turn on cable TV and stare at the weather channel for eleven hours, kick back with a Chalupa, make a toast to Chris Christie, tell yourself voting changes nothing, refuse to leave your couch ever again and suck on your beer hat until your cranium implodes. You’re an American dammit, and Miller Lite spelled backwards is FOX News. Wow, I really am missing those IQ points…

WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit www.revolutioandbeer.com

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Reset the Debt, a strategy to save the world

Luke 3:11 ESV / 135 helpful votes
And he answered them, “Whoever has two tunics is to share with him who has none, and whoever has food is to do likewise.”


This time the losses won’t be passed along to the tax payer. When the next derivatives bubble bursts, and it will sooner rather than later there isn’t enough money on the planet to bail us out of this one. Here is the funny part, the global derivatives market is roughly about $1.2 Quadrillion. The output of the entire world economy is less than $100 trillion. Under the current more or less integrated global economic system in the event of a global economic collapse somebody owes somebody about $1.1 quadrillion, which would require every man, woman, child and nation on Earth 11 years to pay back, if 100% of the global economic output went only to that effort. Here is the really funny part; derivatives essentially represent nothing but emotion.

But this isn’t about derivatives. It is about debt and the absurdity and perversity with which our global economy has and is being managed. It is a measure that much of the world’s economy now is built on debt rather than output and production. The production of and profit from debt has replaced true innovation and creation, or even simple repair and sustainability. In America mounting and choking debt inhibits repair of a critically crumbling infrastructure. It impedes and restricts efforts that would restore communities and is even used as a weapon against profitable companies, such as Bain capital’s dismantling and selling off of the Sensata factory in Freeport Illinois back in 2012.Freeport_Romney_protest

Ironic, since Bain was owned in part by then presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who had made the nation’s debt a campaign issue. Not a single corporate news outlet, and painfully few so-called liberal or progressive sources mentioned at the time that much of Romney’s fortune came from buying companies, borrowing money against those companies, saddling them with his monstrous debt liabilities, while he walked away with the cash. The closing devastated Freeport. Such is the basic philosophy now at the heart of modern economics. Supply and demand? What century were you born in?

It is hardly a secret that far too many college and university graduates emerge from school crushed by debt. It is of course their choice to incur that debt. Their hand signs the contract. Then again had they decided to forego school, well, Starbucks wants a degree these days. Try finding a job without a degree, and now without the “right” degree. Communities are likewise sapped and stymied by voluminous debt, preventing the repair of bridges and roads and necessitating the closing of schools, hospitals and public institutions. Programs critical to feed or help the poor, elderly and disabled are cut, and our federal government has remained at a virtual political stand still over fights about the national debt.

Internationally the debt crisis feeds poverty, extremism, starvation, war and global instability. It sets nations up to be abused, and for their workforce to be abused by international corporations. Debt is a tactic used frequently in human trafficking and child pornography. Debt has not served humanity well at all, and indications are growing loudly and starkly that debt may soon lead the global economy off a cliff that will dwarf the 2008 crisis and plunge it over a cliff to a historic crash from which it might not recover. American-Dollar-Toilet-Paper

What is needed is a Reset the Debt effort, in which global debt on the international, national, local and personal is reset to zero. The planet must choose a date and cancel out all debt on the planet. Wealth at that moment would be based entirely upon possession. If you live in a home, drive a car those things would be the basis for your personal wealth. On day two the debt clock would begin again, stimulating a whole new era in humanity. Poverty would all but disappear. Starvation would be eliminated, and the root causes and environment feeding extremism would be catastrophically undermined or eliminated. Trade between nations would rise to historic levels. Essentially the world’s economy would stop on day one and begin new and fresh on day two, with investments, leveraging and borrowing bringing a new economic renaissance based upon true vision and innovation.

I understand the criticism of ending debt only to create new debt. The difference here is that debt would be based upon reality, where now it is based upon pure abstracts and fraud, which essentially, if you remove the element of trust, is what derivatives represent. And a new system of laws and oversight would guide this new economy. The world would instill and enforce an international minimum wage based upon the nation’s trade output and GDP. A debt to GDP ratio would protect nations from over leveraging and penalize corporations, predatory interests or belligerent government.

What is the alternative? Clearly the system we have is not working. The root cause of that breakdown is debt. The current system is not part of our DNA, nor a necessity like water or food. It is an invention of accommodation and agreement. It can be changed, and those who refuse to accept that it can be changed, scrapped or re-envisioned are holding the rest of the species back from a fundamental aspect of our humanity; the mandate for survival by predicting the calamities threatening us. That we are the architects of the coming global debt implosion but refuse to take the necessary steps to protect ourselves points to a fundamental flaw that must be corrected if we are to survive and progress.

It is time. Reset the debt!

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Hey Cilantro, who do you think you’re fooling? Not this writer!!!

Outrage? The word hardly begins to describe what I am feeling right now. Oh, I know, we’ve all been programmed to “love” cilantro, but what do we really know about this shadowing little herb? You would be shocked, shocked (!) by the way our culture is being invaded by Cilantro, if that is your real name. Where did it come from? How did it get here? Here’s what I found as Revolution and Beer blows the lid off this leafy little alien invader.

Cilantro, the tasty invasion, as some have called this insidious plot

Cilantro, the tasty invasion, as some have called this insidious plot

Cilantro is an alias and may be the name concocted to addict, cajole or possess our friends south of the border. To hide the true extent of the global takeover by the Cilantro pushers they have cleverly and brilliantly proliferated cilantro by different names. The Vietnamese call it Rau Ram. This dangerous, dangerous herb is also suspiciously pandered as coriander, Chinese parsley and Dhania, which makes no sense at all! Cilantro, by the way, is a far more lucrative crop than ever hemp. And did you know children can purchase it openly?

Now we all loved coriander when we were kids, but who ever heard about cilantro before 1980? Not decent god-fearing Americans! Now it seems clear that all of us working hard to prevent “urban” and “foreign” elements from getting into the suburbs with regular Americans were being softened up with this silent coriander invasion. Call it the Manchurian herb. For the love of god, its even used in Beer!

A cilantro addicts anonymous or CAA support group in suburban Columbus. Some addicts are weaned off cilantro using the controversial "Basil" therapy.

A cilantro addicts anonymous or CAA support group in suburban Columbus. Some addicts are weaned off cilantro using the controversial “Basil” therapy.

I grew up living an idyllic life of TV dinners, corn syrup and Midwestern rock and roll. Then one day I am riding my Schwinn bike with the banana seat and orange safety flag down my suburban street. I was minding my business and without warning there appeared the first Taco Bell. Now, I had been protected from food with flavor my whole life, enjoying the blessings of tuna casserole, meatloaf and bologna. It was a magical world, in which if you wanted flavor in food you fried it, dammit! Until that day I was never threatened with “let’s eat Mexican tonight.” We didn’t know what Mexican’s ate, and up until then, in the suburbs, Mexicans were still white like the rest of us. If they spoke Spanish they were decent enough not to let anyone else hear. For god’s sake I graduated high school without ever hearing the word chutney! Thank god Taco Bell has nothing to do with Mexican cuisine.

But we were being indoctrinated slowly. Somewhere in the dark and unconscious recesses of our untainted suburban minds a question grew. It was as if it was planted there compelling us to pander what real Mexican food might taste like. And so it began, first with Mexican cuisine, and if that wasn’t bad enough, suddenly there was Indian food, Mediterranean and then the Thai food invasion of 1992. Wikipedia claims that is was used widely in Ancient Greece and Macedonia. As we know all of those ancient Greeks are now dead. Is cilantro to blame? I can’t believe it is only a coincidence.

But key to kicking an addiction is admitting that you have a problem. Walking through the produce aisle at the local supermarket I blindly slipped a bunch into a plastic bag and tossed it into the cart. The wife politely asked if I was planning on making Mexican food for dinner.

“No,” I replied. “Why do you ask?”

“Thai?”

I lost it at that point. I was thunderstruck and fell to my knees, my anguished cried echoing through the store. I had no idea why I grabbed cilantro. It was automatic, greater and stronger than I was. I passed and the cilantro called out to me in that way that it does; seductive, demanding, threatening that food will taste…dare I say? White! I wanted to rip it from the cart, fling it with extreme prejudice back into the cilantro…section!!??! I would have if, if, if…it really does add something doesn’t it. What’s that flavor? A certain peppery essence with citrus notes; subtle but not overpowering.

Has nothing to do with Cilantro, but is an excellent album!

Has nothing to do with Cilantro, but is an excellent album!

As you can see I am hopelessly addicted to the stuff. Tonight I went home and put it on a hamburger. I’m lost. Cilantro has me in its grip and I don’t know if I am strong enough to break it. But perhaps I can be an example to others. Maybe you or someone you know will be saved. Who knows? America, we got greedy. We could have stopped at Taco Bell, but we didn’t. We took our eye off the ball and look what’s happened to us: Chipoltle. Still not Mexican. I fact I’ve never actually seen a Mexican eating in one, but they flaunt their cilantro openly and unabashedly.

But think of this the next time you reach over and grab a hand full of cilantro at the market. Sure it might be a good source of calcium, vitamins A and C ,phosphorus and potassium, but it is more than 92% water, and that is a rip off. It’s like someone handing you a wet paper towel and saying it’s a good source of tree. If that helps you pass by that green mound beneath the mister then maybe I will have saved just one life, and isn’t that worth it?

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Inside the Joe Walsh/AM560 Stunt. If Joe Walsh says the N-word in the forest and nobody…

I almost bought it, but kudos to AM560 and Joe Walsh for taking a page from a recent article I wrote about the future of Talk radio. I recognized exactly what they were doing after the third segment. The fooled For those of you who missed it, Walsh supposedly teased racial slurs in a bit about the Washington Redskins flap. No one ever heard any of those slurs, and there is no proof he ever really said them. The whole episode was a bit plastic and very staged, but effective. As for the AM560 and Salem Broadcasting, which as a matter of course has supported the darkest, most hyperbolic and vitriolic programming regarding the administration, gun proliferation, religious fundamentalism, naked corporatism, racism, sexism and homophobia, their sudden conscience with regards to “community standards” rings a bit hollow.

Several weeks ago Revolution and Beer contributor WC Turck wrote on several talk radio industry sites regarding the waning death of old and tired talk radio formats. Walsh and Revolution and Beer have been in something of a social media feud on issues. Turck and walsh went toe to toe on immigration on a rally in Chicago last month. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bhF7-hv5_Sc Last week Revolution and Beer published an article about the death of the old grid-like :20/:40 formats. The article was shared on Walsh’s Facebook page.(So Long Dinosaur Talk Radio. Long Live New Media! www.revolutionandbeer.com)

Yesterday on his show they broke with that old format during Walsh’s bit. The benefit and purpose by Walsh and AM560 is that they were getting their ratings asses handed to them by WLS and Michael Savage in virtually the same time slot. Walsh and company extended the bit, supposedly suspending Walsh. All morning the local hosts were teasing whether Walsh would return this afternoon for his 5 0’clock program. Predictable, but still the whole bit sucked in and fired up a number of AM560’s loyal, albeit aging listener base. It even fooled the progressive rag, Mother Jones and other media outlets.

So it worked, despite being a despicable way of doing things, and affirms Turck’s assertion that audiences are currently so locked into the old format that breaking it can have dramatic theatrical and emotional effects on the audience and media. On this one, and with Savage a nationally syndicated show, AM560 has the advantage in stealing some of WLS’ audience. Now, if they could maybe do something like this that actually strengthens race relations rather than appealing to white people who refuse to progress with the rest of society we might actually accomplish something.

WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit www.revolutioandbeer.com

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John Carter and Eric Cantor; A tale of two absentee congressmen

“There ain’t no cure for stupid.”

That was a line my grandfather once used when I was a kid. He was a gruff old Iowan, with a habit for cigars and a penchant for remarks like that one. Lately it seems one could apply that to a great number of politicians in congress. Whether a voter is conservative, liberal, tea party or libertarian they all have one thing in common these days; few in this country believe they are being ably and competently represented by their representatives or their government.

Louie Minor

Louie Minor


That was the subject of a conversation I had the other day with Louie Minor, candidate for the 31st congressional district in central Texas. Minor, a combat veteran, native Texan and a captain in the Army Reserves, reflected upon a theme I have been hearing lately from a number of friends and folks in the district, of various political leanings, that the current occupant of the office, Jack Carter, just isn’t there for constituents.

The recent Veterans Administration scandal is just one case in point. Carter, who appears so out of touch with his district, seems to be swatting reactively at issues as if they are an annoyance and not an indication of the need for real change and true oversight. Or is it that Carter feels that he can simply call himself a Tea party Candidate, republican or conservative and assume that voters will simply vote for a bumper sticker rather than their own best interests? In fact, that appears to be the assumption of far too many well-entrenched republican politicians, that the incessant pounding of partisan war drums is enough to distract voters from choosing candidates who have been and will remain out in the communities, on the battlefield or looking forward towards futures facing the community and our nation.

The unanimous consensus is that Virginia republican Erik Cantor lost to David Brat for being an absentee representative. Of course he wasn’t absent for his wealthiest friends and family. Despite a long history of issues and complaints at the VA facility in Temple Carter remained apparently uninterested until he could garner some partisan political benefit. None of that, however, likely will have any actual benefit for veterans, their families and taxpayers. Cantor’s defeat seems to have been a splash of cold water in the face of John Carter who, up to now, was also absent on two critical issues in the 31st district.

Rep. John Carter. Out of touch?

Rep. John Carter. Out of touch?

Light Rail and the VA. Minor highlighted each of these issues and underscored that there is hardly a cookie-cutter sort of approach when it comes to competently representing the district. The VA issue, and the necessary reforms to the system, in which Carter’s partisan sniping does little to address, is critical to Bell County, owing to the number of veterans there and to Fort Hood. Sadly, he finds himself arguing from a place of ignorance against a candidate and a veteran who knows the VA, has used it and who has workable ideas for reforming the system without disrupting the care that our nation’s veterans still rely upon daily. A proposed Light Rail line resonates strongest with voters and constituents in Williamson County just north of Austin. Minor, pointing out that the area will have a larger population than Austin within the next 25 years, sees the rail system as an opportunity to get ahead of issues created by that growth. The rail line would create jobs, and help cut CO2 emissions. A bus line proposed in place of the rail system would only add to taxpayer’s burden with rising fuel and maintenance costs and contribute to congestion as traffic increases with population. Minor spoke of having a clear vision for the future of Williamson county and the communities of Round Rock and Georgetown, something carter has been all but absent on.

What carter’s disconnect with constituents and voters, and the Cantor defeat reveals is that partisanship for partisanship’s sake has run its course; and still the voters are no closer to real world solutions to problems they face. Cantor ignored his constituents in favor of big money friends. John Carter seems to have made and continues to make those same mistakes, and seems more interested in the game of politics than the work of representation. As minor pointed out, paraphrasing Brat in Virginia, “Dollars don’t vote.” He’s right, people vote. And he might offer another line to his opponent, with all due credit to my grandfather, of course, though I think Minor might be too much of a gentlemen to use it…

Mr. Carter, there ain’t no cure for…well, you know the rest.

WC Turck is an author, artist, playwright and talk radio host in Chicago. His first novel, “Broken” was recommended by NAMI for its treatment of PTSD. In 2006 he published “Everything for Love,” a memoir of his experiences during the siege of Sarajevo. He wrote and produced two critically acclaimed plays, “Occupy my Heart” and “The People’s Republic of Edward Snowden.” He works with the homeless and foreclosure victims in Chicago. For more information, past shows, videos and articles, visit www.revolutioandbeer.com

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Second Annual Non-violent Direct Action Workshop for Students and Youth, Saturday, July 12th.

On my summer vacation I changed tomorrow!

Please join Occupy Roger’s Park, now the Chicago Light Brigade for the second annual non-violent direct action workshop for students and youth Saturday July 12th. It’s free and travel assistance is available for those who might have difficulty attending. Lunch will be provided.
chicago
Weather permitting the workshop will be held outside. Location details to be announced, so stay tuned, but slated to be in a public park in or near Roger’s Park. A crowd-sourced campaign to fund the training passed its goal, so they will have lots of materials to work with as well as the above mentioned option of travel assistance.

If you know any youth that might be interested, please pass the message along! Also feel free to forward it to anyone you think would know interested youth.

Check out a video of pictures from last year’s awesome event: http://vimeo.com/95148126
Please RSVP if they would like to attend, and contact David Orlikoff, or Kelly Hayes (https://www.facebook.com/hayeskelly?fref=nf)

Or the Chicago Light Brigade (https://www.facebook.com/chicagolightbrigade)

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The Crimes of Monsanto: company appears to use devastating floods to subvert European laws.

There is an illegal invasion happening. At the very least it ought to be a crime. In a Revolution and Beer exclusive, we have learned that Monsanto appears to be attempting an end run around European laws and national sovereignty. Their apparent goal is to find any means at all to force Genetically Modified (Europe: GM. US: GMOs) crops onto the European market. In short it is a cynical attempt to take advantage of a horrific situation across southern Europe to market an unnecessary and potentially dangerous product.

Flooding was the worst in more than 150 years, and the scale of the destruction is still far from being assessed.

Flooding was the worst in more than 150 years, and the scale of the destruction is still far from being assessed.

The target appears to be the Balkans, still recovering from devastating flooding this spring. The flooding forced tens of thousands from their homes and killed dozens. More than 100,000 homes were damaged or destroyed and nearly a million were affected after unprecedented rains from a season’s worth of precipitation fell in just a few days. The flooding and resulting landslides devastated farming and farmers across the region. Estimates for damage to agriculture in Serbia alone topped more than three quarters of a billion Dollars.

The effort to force GM foods onto the European market by Monsanto has been a black eye for the company. This week it was reported that Monsanto was donating more than $325,000 worth of GM Dekalb corn seeds to Serbian farmers. Reportedly, another $200,000 worth of these GM seeds were distributed to farmers across neighboring Croatia and Bosnia. Monsanto was said to donate GM tomato, cabbage and cucumber seeds to the region as well.

“We hope that with our help small farmers that lost their crops due to the flooding will be able to plant again within the next two weeks,” said José Manuel Madero, CEO of Monsanto Europe, Middle East and Africa. ”This is the time for us to show up and contribute to helping communities in need.” http://monsantoblog.eu/monsanto-helps-s … a-century/

But the move is not as benevolent as it may seem. Eight European Union countries have banned GM foods, including neighboring Austria, Italy and Hungary. Bulgaria and Greece have also banned GM crops. Bosnia and Croatia both require labeling. Serbia and Albania have less stringent restrictions in place. There are concerns that GM crops will cross pollinate with non-GM crops. Last year there were allegations GM crops may have played a role in a collapse in Bosnia’s been population, and has been cited for their “negative impact on biodiversity.”

While the European Union itself has not imposed a ban on GM crops, member states, including Germany, France and Poland, can and have imposed their own bans. The concern is that the legal mechanism that protects national character throughout the EU may also allow Monsanto leverage to force GM seeds and crops into the market. Last year Monsanto announced that it was abandoning the European market. Public resistance to GM foods has been vociferous. In May hundreds of thousands turned out for marches and protests across Europe against Monsanto and GM foods. Monsanto cites low demand for its seeds by European farmers.

Monsanto spokeswoman Ursula Lüttmer-Ouazane said that the company, “understood that such plants don’t have any broad acceptance in European societies. We haven’t been able to make any progress over the years, and it’s counter-productive to tilt against windmills.”

In the wake of catastrophic floods across southern Europe, a region still struggling from the aftermath of the bloodiest European conflict since the Second World War, the idea that a corporation like Monsanto would take advantage of such a disaster is troubling. The company appears to be attempting an end run around both European citizens who have been vocal and adamant about GM foods, and sovereign governments beleaguered and distracted by historic floods. That ought to be a crime.

WC Turck has more than 20 years experience in the Balkans and as a Balkan observer. His 2008 memoir, “Everything for Love” recounts the war in the Balkans, and offers one of the best firsthand accounts of the 3 ½ year siege of Sarajevo. http://www.amazon.com/Everything-For-Love-Memoir-And/dp/1440132925. Turck hosts the Revolution and Beer radio show with friend and partner Brian Murray on Q4 Radio, www.que4,org in Chicago.

*Numerous European sources contributed to this piece.

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