Annual Christmas Letter to Friends and Family
December 28, 2004
Lac #9, Quebec, Canada
Dear friends and family,
I wasn’t able to get this written and sent before Christmas; this year has been exceptionally busy. Our trips to Canada seem to be the only times when I can forget about “all the work that I can do” and just relax, play with the kids, enjoy the forest, the lake, the trails, the family, and catching up on my reading and writing. Without email/telephone, we are not entirely cut off from the world and feel the shock and sadness of the news of the earthquake and tsunami that killed so many and left a million people homeless.
Last January I worked very hard to prepare for the comedy/benefit- “Behind Every Terrorist- There is a Bush.” Perhaps it was a crazy idea and a gamble; it took all my financial resources to pull it off. I didn’t realize that our big night in San Francisco would be on “Super Bowl Sunday” and we didn’t quite get the turn-out that I had hoped for. Still, over a thousand people came to San Francisco and Palo Alto; technical difficulties made it impossible to show the flash movies and images on the Palo Alto screen. Although we probably broke even, within the budget was money to film and edit the event (the DVD is still not finished). The event itself drew the attention and support of a range of sponsors, including KPFA and the San Francisco Bay Guardian. The coverage we received actually got more hard info on 9-11 into the local paper (in the arts section) than had previous articles in other parts of the paper. People also thoroughly enjoyed the show. The idea was to use humor to drop down psychological defenses and sneak information out to the public.
In February, I also flew to Toronto to meet with the group working on the International Citizen’s Inquiry into 9-11, Phase Two. In Toronto, they had an office, a paid staff, a very ambitious plan, and certainly more financial resources than I had, but we all felt the urgency of the unfolding political events, and recognized the window of opportunity we had to try to break the story in the public arena, so we did the best we could with what we had.
In March the official 9-11 Commission hearings tool place the week of the Inquiry, just as Richard Clarke was making headlines with his “accusations against the Bush Administration.” About one hundred and fifty people registered to be “participants” of the SF Inquiry which drew about 28 journalists, 30 documentary film-makers, a flock of volunteers, and in over three days 750 one day tickets were purchased by the general public. We had coverage in four papers, including the SF Chronicle and the San Jose Mercury News, and forced a response from the White House. All of us, who participated in the Inquiry, felt it was a success and a historical event, as well. Fortunately, I was able to get permission to film all the presentations in the Herbst Theatre, and we cooperatively shared the footage amongst all the documentary filmmakers, and have produced online edited versions of most of the presentations, as well as a radio series, also available online, and footage has been used in three documentary films, so far, with many more in the works. Certainly one of the best things was just to help create the space for people to meet, hear one another, dialogue, brainstorm, work together, who had only known one another before by their work, over the phone, or online. The day after the Inquiry, someone organized a meeting which 28 people attended and birthed the www.911truth.org organization. We went from being a scattered group of researchers, activists, concerned citizens, to become the “9-11 Truth Movement.”
I am quite possibly the worst “organizer” on the planet, as I am always losing phone numbers, addresses, and I am constantly overwhelmed by taking on more than one person could possibly do. I missed at least 10 press phone calls during the Inquiry; I just can’t do all the organizing and the publicity, too. In May, before the Toronto Inquiry, I tried to organize just a press conference. At our March press conference- the press was there, but I was totally unprepared. In May- I was totally prepared, and the press didn’t come (but we videotaped it, anyway). I also sent out a Directory of the Inquiry Participants and a brief Report to all those who had registered, and organized the 7th printing of the Deception Dollars, including a special Media Deception Dollar, which promoted GNN’s new book- True Lies, and my friend, Mark Achbar’s new film- The Corporation.
The Toronto Inquiry built upon the San Francisco Inquiry and began with showing many of the films we showed, in their entirety, and videotapes of the speakers who weren’t presenting in Toronto. Unfortunately, I think they overpriced the tickets and fewer people attended the Toronto Inquiry which lasted a full week, as opposed to our three days. I finally got to meet Michel Chossudovsky and others whose work I had heard of and some whose work I was completely unfamiliar with. Mike Ruppert’s presentation showed how the wargames effectively paralyzed the defenses on 9-11, allowing the attacks to succeed. Despite the failure of the media to question the official narrative or the “Cover-Up Commission,” we felt we had a substantial body of evidence to shatter the 9-11 myth and convict some government officials and the press for their role in the destruction of evidence, and their part in the cover-up. Our challenges were the psychological barriers of fear and denial on the part of the public and press which we had to figure out how to overcome in the most timely fashion.
In June, Daniel graduated from Elementary School, he gave a wonderful speech (each child in the class has the opportunity to speak alone or with other kids). Daniel compared his experience with a triathalon which he had recently completed. (I was rather amazed that he wanted to do it, since he didn’t know how to swim freestyle, and I knew that that part of the race would be a real challenge for him). I was very proud of him for taking on the challenge of the triathalon and for the courage of speaking publicly to a large crowd (an experience which still scares me).
When Fahrenheit 9-11 came out and the kids got out of school, I went on vacation. I must admit that I did take the classical “busman’s holiday” the first week, by taking the kids to Asilomar, a wonderful seaside retreat center next to Monterey, where a major Peace Conference was being held and I split my time between the kids and the conference. I saw lots of old friends; I raised the visibility of 9-11, and got out lots of materials, and we all had a good time. Then the kids and I headed towards Colorado to see my sister, my nieces, my mom. We never made it to Colorado, but stayed in Utah visiting Nancy and her kids. The kids had so much fun playing with one another; Grandma came to visit us there to save us a drive.
We did have to return to California in time for Boy Scout Camp, and I took a vacation from my vacation to catch up on my email and express my outrage at the idea of appointing Porter Goss head of the CIA. My article- “Prime Suspect in Largest U.S. Mass Murder Nominated to Head CIA” cost me dearly… I sat far too long at the computer and suffered from terrible lower back pain for ten days afterwards, including all my time with the kids at camp. I was dreading the long flight to Canada, but the pain left the day we flew.
After our afternoon of sledding, getting my face and hair covered in ice; it’s hard to remember what it was like in the summertime, when I hiked up and down those hills, and we swam in the lake every day instead of skidding across the solid ice. I do know that I was ready to plunge back into political work after two weeks of sheer play. In August, I persuaded Jules to help me at the annual protest at Livermore Labs, where we tabled and tried to get co-sponsors for upcoming rallies and marches.
The gist of my speeches, talks, papers from May through September was that- as Pearl Harbor was used to justify the creation of the National Security State, 9-11 is being used to construct a Global Security State. From Homeland Security to the reorganization of the Intelligence Agencies with an “Intelligence Tsar,” the architects of 9-11 are using their “terrorist act” to construct the apparatus which will be used to carry out more “terrorist acts” and threaten the rights, lives, and liberties of the vast majority of humanity. When I learned that my own Congresswoman was a co-sponsor of the “Intelligence Transformation Act” H.R.4104, I organized a rally and march on her office. Then I learned that the 9-11 Commissioners were also coming to San Francisco, and I organized a protest against them, too. I had hoped to protest the Republican National Convention in New York and help with Phase 3 of the International Inquiry in New York in September, but there was so much to be done locally that I concentrated my efforts on organizing and the press. We put two full page ads in the San Francisco Bay Guardian to get out the key information and details about all of our rallies, protests, marches, as well as a number of 9-11 educational events, schedules of 9-11 television shows and radio programs.
The kids were glad that I didn’t go to New York, and Daniel and I were able to celebrate our birthday together. They weren’t too happy about school beginning in August; they would prefer two months of school and ten months of vacation, but I tell them that it is up to them to fix the educational system; I have my hands full just trying to get rid of the military-industrial complex. Jean-Luc has been wonderful at shouldering the parenting responsibilities while I’m gone and has the patience of a saint. I love him and appreciate him more than ever (I just wish WE had more time together- as we both put so much into our work and the kids; at least we’ve never reached the point of satiation and appreciate our time alone).
I pause here, as I think of how busy I have been since August. I still owe two people pies that I had meant to bake for them when strawberries and peaches were in season, but weekly demonstrations, plus countless other demonstrations against the 9-11 Commissioners, Executive Director Philip Zelikow, the stolen election, have kept me so busy. I also wanted to get documents to Newsweek and the San Francisco Bay Guardian, about the wargames and Cheney’s commanding role on 9-11, before the election. I’ve had two independent weeklies interested in articles, and I haven’t had time to meet with editors, or write those articles. However, I did get a good Op-Ed published in the Stanford Daily on the 9-11 Cover-Up Commission on the day Zelikow spoke there and we protested him. We did have over a hundred people at our rally and march on September 11th when we “Blew the Whistle on Cheney and the 9-11 Cover-Up.” I did get to speak at the International Conference on the Gift Economy. I did question the presidents of ABC, CBS and NBC on 9-11 and their failure to address the key facts and questions that the International Citizen’s Inquiries raised (that was broadcast nationally on C-Span). I also participated in a panel on 9-11 at a radio-journalism seminar in San Francisco. I also published another 1,500,000 Deception Dollars, including an Election Deception Dollar with the key websites questioning the stolen election, and a Media Deception Dollar (We also printed a limited edition of our Billion Dollar Notes- featuring Tarpley’s new book- 9-11 Synthetic Terrorism- Made in the USA). I received a “Pink Badge of Courage” award from Code Pink for the Deception Dollars. Our Northern California 9-11 Truth Alliance also became a project of Agape Foundation, which is wonderful, since now, people who want to make donations can write checks to us or through Agape and the money doesn’t have to go through my bank account and give me the bookkeeping headache of dealing with the I.R.S..
Jules is now 5’ 10 ½” tall. Jeremy is 5’5” tall. I can’t call them “little” anymore. Jules even has a tuxedo that he wears when he plays in the school concerts. They are both doing very well in school. Daniel is having a harder time organizing himself and adjusting to Middle School. I’m forever trying to balance mothering with activism. Ironically, the gist of my most recent speech was that the American people need to grow up, overcome fear and denial, be brave, and face the facts about 9-11 and hold their government accountable for its actions. Subsequently, I received a Journal of Psychohistory with a major focus on 9-11 from Lloyd de Mause, author of “The Emotional Life of Nations.” The thesis of his book is that humanity evolves as mothers improve their child-raising skills, that nations relive their childhood dramas on the world stage, and that the great hope is for humanity is that mothers improve their child rearing skills before the current crop of world leaders annihilate us reenacting their childhood traumas. I remember when the kids were little telling them that we can’t save the world by “killing the bad guys,” but by recognizing that the people behind the wars were dysfunctional people who failed to learn how to love when they were little. One of the things we called for last September was “Compassionate Impeachment.”
Figuring out how to be a good mom and strategize effectively to bring the Truth, Peace and Justice Movements together to thwart the current Global Power Grab by the Insanely Frightened War Cabal is what I am doing and will be doing in the next week or so. Fortunately, I don’t feel like I am working in isolation and feel incredibly blessed by a growing network of friends who share my hopes and goals for peace, justice, freedom and, “Daniel would say, ‘fun,’” but I believe we all want a future where people would be free to pursue their passions, “the pursuit of happiness.” I feel very lucky to be able to work on issues which I believe are important and hope will help as a catalyst for positive social change, and that bring me into contact with incredibly courageous, brilliant, talented, gifted, wonderful people. I just wish I had more time for my family and friends, to catch up on all of my mail and commitments… I think the next major event that I organize will be premieres of Barrie Zwicker’s documentary- The Great Conspiracy- the 9-11 News Special You Never saw in Oakland, San Francisco and Palo Alto in March with Barrie Zwicker, the press, and possibly Tarpley or Ruppert, but first there will be the counter-inaugeration/protests in January and choosing between skiing with the Boy Scouts and family, or going to the East Coast…
Wishing you good health and all the best in 2005!!!