Saturday, July 01, 2006

7/1/2006 Community Gumbo

audio Democracy Now (6/27/06)
Supreme Court Overturns Vermont Campaign Finance Law

Is Bush Administration's Bank Spy Program One Part of a Resurgent Total Information Awareness?

Former Bush Spokesman Urges Newspapers to Run Pro-War Stories by Former Vets With GOP Ties

Lawmakers, Regulators Face Key Decisions on Future of Media Ownership, Internet, Public Access, Low Power Radio

Susan Cowsill, "Nanny's Song," Just Believe It.

Prometheus Radio News Flash: The Senate Commerce Committee voted to expand low power FM radio
The Senate Commerce Committee voted on June 28, 2006 to expand low power FM radio, as an amendment onto a large telecommunications bill that covers everything from your access to the internet to your public access TV stations. Read our release to learn more about this important step towards an expanded low power FM radio service.

Learn which Senators voted to expand low power FM radio here.

On June 28th, advocates of low power FM (LPFM) radio, a service used by churches, schools, activist organizations, emergency responders, and hundreds of communities, applauded the Senate Commerce Committee's vote to expand the low power FM radio service.

The vote approved an amendment to a major telecommunications bill currently before the Commerce Committee. This vote marks a major step towards the expansion of low power FM radio to the large cities of the United States, and potentially hundreds, if not thousands, of other communities across this country. The vote also affirms the Commerce Committee's previous support of LPFM in 2004 and 2005.

Senator McCain (R-AZ), a sponsor of the bill, stated that after 2 years and 2.2 million dollars of taxpayer money were spent, the study reaffirmed the FCC's original conclusions in favor of a full low power FM radio service. "I think we ought to send the National Association of Broadcasters a bill for that study," said McCain.

Senator Cantwell, (D-WA), another of the bill's sponsors, said that low power FM radio was about allowing the diverse voices of America to speak. "The only people left opposing this bill are those who oppose that diversity,” said the Senator.

You can read this amendment here (pdf document).

What would this amendment do? This amendment would remove the artificial restriction that the FCC was forced to put on our airwaves in 2000, keeping low power FM radio from America's cities and thousands of our towns. Hundreds, if not thousands, of new radio frequencies would be opened up to communities across the country.

What's our goal? Senate Bill 2686 will have over 100 amendments offered onto it, and the expansion of low power FM radio is just one. Even though we all might have to come together later this year to defeat this bill (we're not trading low power FM for public access TV -- no way!), this is an important chance to show support for LPFM on the floor of the senate, on this bill, and in all future legislation. If this amendment is voted down on the floor, we'll have to start over at square one to expand LPFM to our communities.


What can you do? You can call your Senator - today - and ask them to support low power FM radio on Senate Bill 2686 -- the Communications, Consumer's Choice, and Broadband Deployment Act of 2006. We aren't crying wolf -- we need you to call - immediately - as this bill will start getting debated this week.

Learn more about low power FM radio stations serving their communities, and read about a station near you here.


Get involved with the fight to protect access to the internet by visiting and

Mercy Corps Drum Circle
EVENT: Drum Circle, hosted by Mercy Corps.

TIME: 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.

PLACE: St. Augustine Church, 1210 Gov. Nicholls St., New Orleans.

ADMISSION: Free and open to the public. Some instruments will be available or you may bring your own drum.

Over the course of Sundays throughout the Summer of 2006 (June 18th, July 2nd, July 16th, July 30th, and August 13th), Mercy Corps invites all members of the community to join together to create a series of healing drum circles.

Rhythmic Roots: The Backbeat of Healing, The Heartbeat of a Community will provide an opportunity for everyone to commune together in honor of the culture and people of New Orleans. Each drum circle will feature three professional percussionists to lead the group efforts. The inclusion of Mardi Gras Indians and brass bands will highlight the cultural interconnection and organic evolution of music in New Orleans. Rhythmic Roots will bring together pivotal elements of New Orleans musical culture focused around the pulse of the drum. The rhythm of healing will involve the community with a free event reflecting the spirit and culture of New Orleans. The Rhythmic Roots drum circles will be held in the field of the churchyard of St. Augustine Church in the historical Treme neighborhood. St. Augustine provides an ideal venue to inspire a diverse crowd to experience Rhythmic Roots.

More about Mercy Corps drum circles can be read in Blogging New Orleans

audio Louisiana Shrimpers going out of business because of low prices
A couple of weeks ago, a crowd of shrimpers gathered at the state capitol in Baton Rouge to call for an investigation into price fixing, which they say is at 1950’s levels.

Shrimpers are the backbone of the economies in many of rural south Louisiana communities. In addition to having to repair their homes and rebuild from the devastation that Katrina and Rita dealt them, shrimpers are having to confront the economic hardships of competing with cheap imported shrimp and possible price fixing by processors.

Lee Dorsey, "Get Out of My Life Woman."

Coliseum Baptist Church Update
Following last week's Community Gumbo segment on the demolition of the Coliseum Baptist Church, the demolition proceeded unabated.

This is all that remains of the 150-year-old church.

More about the Coliseum Baptist Church demolition can be read at The Third Battle of New Orleans and VatulBlog (here and here).

Mary Heft Update
Maureen Missavage produced a story for Community Gumbo which aired on May 6th about Mid-City resident Mary Heft, who was living in her flooded, moldy house because she couldn't get a FEMA trailer.

WWL reporter Bill Capo interviewed Mary Heft this past week for an Action Report feature.

In the June 28th Action Report, Mary Heft had a FEMA trailer on her property, but she couldn't get keys to get into the trailer.

Following the June 28th report, Mary Heft got the keys to her trailer, and in the June 29th Action Report, Mary Heft expressed her joy at finally being able to get into her trailer.

audio Democracy Now (6/19/06)
Paul Krugman on the New Class War in America

Catpower, "American Flag."


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