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Reading The Nation

The Nation, April 19 2004

from "Bush to City: Drop Dead" by Jack Newfield


On a per-capita basis, New York State ranks forty-ninth among the states in antiterrorist funding, far below rural, sparsely populated Wyoming, Montana and North Dakota. According to the New York Daily News, New York is also forty-ninth in per capita funding among cities: $5.87 per person. Compare that with $35.80 for Pittsburgh. But then, Tom Ridge was governor of Pennsylvania. Or look at Florida, where Jeb Bush is governor. Miami gets $52.82 per person. Orlando gets $47.14---as if Disney World is a bigger terrorist target than the New York subway system, the United Nations, the Stock Exchange, Times Square, JFK Airport, Yankee Stadium on opening day, or our reservoirs and water system. What's the biggest recipient of any US city, at $77.92 per person? New Haven, Connecticut. Is Yale a high-priority target because both Bushes are alumni?


from "Lying in Wait" by David Graeber



August 2000, Philadelphia.Hours before protests against the Republican convention are to begin, police, claiming to be acting on a tip, seize the warehouse where art, banners and puppets are being prepared, arresting the seventy activists inside. Chief John Timoney announces the discovery of C4 explosives and water balloons full of hydrochloric acid. Police later admit that no explosives or acid were found; those arrested are not, however, released. All of the puppets, banners, art and literature to be used in the protest are destroyed...

...During the WTO protests themselves, no one, including the police, claimed that anyone had done anything more militant than break a plate-glass window. Yet just three months later, the Boston Herald reported that officers from Seattle had come to brief the local police on how to deal with "Seattle tactics," such as attacking police with "chunks of concrete, BB guns, wrist rockets and large capacity squirt guns loaded with bleach and urine." When, a few months later New York Times reporter Nichole Christian, apparently relying on police sources in Detroit, claimed that Seattle demonstrators had "hurled Molotov cocktails, rocks and excrement at delegates and police officers," the Times had to run a retraction, admitting that Seattle authorities confirmed no objects had been thrown at human beings...

...TImoney has also become notorious for brutal tactics: In Miami his men opened fire on activists with an array of wooden, rubber and plastic bullets, tazer guns, concussion grenades and a variety of chemical weapons...Timoney has already been put in charge of security for this summer's Democratic National Convention in Boston.
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