Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. We must all do more to help stop this western corporate arrogance that puts the future generations lives in despair. @BruceKGagnon

Monday, September 30, 2013


The Department of Defense (Endless War) has turned its huge public affairs program into an offensive propaganda campaign being run by the same contractors that spy on the world through the intelligence agencies, according to a DCBureau-National Security News Service (NSNS) investigation.

Military and foreign policy has been privatized in the US.  The Pentagon's #1 job is to serve as the primary resource extraction service for corporate globalization.  We've got to nationalize military production and convert it to sustainable technology production.  Wind turbines, rail systems, solar and other such production must replace the weapons systems that are now the products of endless war. Convert and survive.

Turn the Pentagon into the Natural Guard and deal with the coming ravages of climate change.
The Department of Defense has turned its huge public affairs program into an offensive propaganda campaign being run by the same contractors that spy on the world through the intelligence agencies, according to a DCBureau-National Security News Service (NSNS) investigation. - See more at:
The Department of Defense has turned its huge public affairs program into an offensive propaganda campaign being run by the same contractors that spy on the world through the intelligence agencies, according to a DCBureau-National Security News Service (NSNS) investigation. - See more at:


Due to fiscal crisis in the US the NSA would like you to help pay for your own surveillance.  Please buy these phones and help out the NSA.


Air Force mini-shuttle X-37B: The U.S. Air Force is preparing to consolidate "mysterious mini-shuttle" operations at Kennedy Space Center or Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.  
Analysts contend the military space plane is part of the Pentagon's effort to develop the capability to strike anywhere in the world with a conventional warhead in less than an hour - known as Prompt Global Strike.
The development of these new space planes is one reason that the Obama administration and the Pentagon are eager to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles in Russia and China in the years to come. As key elements in the growing U.S. first-strike program, they become even more effective if the U.S. can get its potential rivals to reduce their nuclear retaliatory capability giving the Pentagon an ever greater chance of pulling off a successful decapitating attack.
The Washington Times has previously reported, "The actual expense [of the X-37] is hidden in the Pentagon's 'black,' or classified, budget - is likely to cost more than $1 billion. The launch vehicle alone - a two-stage, liquid-propelled Atlas V rocket - costs as much as $200 million. Ten years of development on the plane - as the project was shuffled from NASA to DARPA and finally to its current institutional home in the Air Force - is likely to have cost hundreds of millions of dollars more." 


You might be surprised to learn that 42% of Americans believe that capitalism isn't working out so well for us? According to a Brookings Institution’s July survey, more than a quarter of Americans say capitalism is working “not too well” while 16% say capitalism is working “not at all well.” The key point is that there is no democracy in capitalism.  The people, the workers, have virtually no say in decision making at the workplace nor in the halls of government.  The economic system and the political system are rigged and the public is getting tired of it.  These numbers show that the public is ready to talk about a different kind of system.

Sunday, September 29, 2013


Saturday, September 28, 2013



  • Here are links to a couple recent radio spots I was involved in.  The first was my talk, along with Shenna Bellows who just left the Maine ACLU after 10 years of great work, at the University of Maine-Orono.  We were invited to speak about drones and organizing against drone surveillance and weaponized drone testing in Maine.  In particular I spent alot of time talking about our upcoming Maine Drone Peace Walk.  WERU radio is a great alternative station north of where I live that covers many progressive issues.  Amy Browne from the station recorded our talk at the university and you can listen to it here
  • Several nights ago I was invited on Voice of Russia radio by John Robles.  He's had me on before and attempts to keep in touch with what we are doing in the Global Network.  This particular interview he broke into three parts and you can listen to each segment here

Friday, September 27, 2013


RT reports:

In his dramatic speech in New York, Bolivian President Evo Morales called for the UN to be moved out of the US and for Barack Obama to be tried for crimes against humanity. Speaking to RT, Morales explained his controversial proposals.

In his most controversial demand, Morales said that Obama should face an international trial with human rights watchdogs among the judges. The Bolivian president accused his US counterpart of instigating conflicts in the Middle East to make the region more volatile and to increase the US's grip on the natural resources it abounds in. He gave Libya as an example of a country where "they arranged for the president to be killed, and they usurped Libya's oil."

"Now they are funding the rebels that fight against presidents who don't support capitalism or imperialism," Morales told Eva Golinger of RT's Spanish sister channel, Actualidad. "And where a coup d'état is impossible, they seek to divide the people in order to weaken the nation -- a provocation designed to trigger an intervention by peacekeeping forces, NATO, the UN Security Council. But the intervention itself is meant to get hold of oil resources and gain geopolitical control, rather than enforce respect for human rights."

The US also operates in the same imperialist way outside the Middle East, Morales argued. At the General Assembly Obama said that the US "is prepared to use all elements of our power, including military force, to secure these core interests" in the Middle East. Among the core interests, he mentioned "the free flow of energy from the region to the world." Morales said that Obama's statement should make any country possessing natural resources worried.

"I think that statement poses a threat to all countries that have energy sources, especially gas and oil," Morales said. "But mostly those countries that sell gas and oil to the US. It is a direct threat. I am planning to meet with President Maduro and analyze the issue. I understand that this is a direct threat to Venezuela, because in order to secure his country's energy needs, Obama can invade any country."

Washington's relations with Latin America deteriorated this summer, following the grounding of Evo Morales's plane in Vienna. President Morales was on his way home from Moscow when several EU countries closed their airspace to his jet, on the suspicion that former NSA contractor Edward Snowden -- wanted in the US on espionage charges -- was on board. Bolivia laid the blame for the plane's grounding on the US.

Relations with the US were further aggravated after Latin American countries learned they were being extensively spied upon by the NSA.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff devoted her UN General Assembly speech to condemning the US surveillance, calling NSA practices a "breach of international law."

And Venezuela's Nicolas Maduro skipped his appearance at the UN altogether, citing plans for "provocations" against him.

Maduro's decision to break his UN General Assembly appointment came after Venezuela's foreign minister, Elias Jaua, told the media that the US had denied a plane carrying President Maduro entrance into its airspace. The plane was on the way to China and Washington later allowed it to pass, arguing that the delay was caused by an improperly-filed overflight request from Venezuela.

Morales said he did not believe the incident was coincidental, but was indicative of the US's discrimination against Latin American diplomats.

"I talked about this with the media before, after Bolivian Vice President Álvaro García Linera was not allowed on board an American Airlines flight to the US. Other Bolivian ministers had to go through a similar ordeal; they were also asked to take off their jackets and shoes. This is what happened to ministers, the official representatives of their country. I got a US visa allowing me to stay for six to seven days, which is the short period of time absolutely necessary for me to participate in the General Assembly session. Blackmail over visas, violations of the ministers' rights, air piracy -- all of that raises security concerns."


Seymour Hersh on Obama, NSA and the 'pathetic' American media

Pulitzer Prize winner explains how to fix journalism, saying press should 'fire 90% of editors and promote ones you can't control'

The Guardian (UK)

Seymour Hersh has got some extreme ideas on how to fix journalism – close down the news bureaus of NBC and ABC, sack 90% of editors in publishing and get back to the fundamental job of journalists which, he says, is to be an outsider.

It doesn't take much to fire up Hersh, the investigative journalist who has been the nemesis of US presidents since the 1960s and who was once described by the Republican party as "the closest thing American journalism has to a terrorist".

He is angry about the timidity of journalists in America, their failure to challenge the White House and be an unpopular messenger of truth.

Don't even get him started on the New York Times which, he says, spends "so much more time carrying water for Obama than I ever thought they would" – or the death of Osama bin Laden. "Nothing's been done about that story, it's one big lie, not one word of it is true," he says of the dramatic US Navy Seals raid in 2011.

Hersh is writing a book about national security and has devoted a chapter to the bin Laden killing. He says a recent report put out by an "independent" Pakistani commission about life in the Abottabad compound in which Bin Laden was holed up would not stand up to scrutiny. "The Pakistanis put out a report, don't get me going on it. Let's put it this way, it was done with considerable American input. It's a bullshit report," he says hinting of revelations to come in his book.

The Obama administration lies systematically, he claims, yet none of the leviathans of American media, the TV networks or big print titles, challenge him.

"It's pathetic, they are more than obsequious, they are afraid to pick on this guy [Obama]," he declares in an interview with the Guardian.

"It used to be when you were in a situation when something very dramatic happened, the president and the minions around the president had control of the narrative, you would pretty much know they would do the best they could to tell the story straight. Now that doesn't happen any more. Now they take advantage of something like that and they work out how to re-elect the president.

He isn't even sure if the recent revelations about the depth and breadth of surveillance by the National Security Agency will have a lasting effect.

Snowden changed the debate on surveillance

He is certain that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden "changed the whole nature of the debate" about surveillance. Hersh says he and other journalists had written about surveillance, but Snowden was significant because he provided documentary evidence – although he is sceptical about whether the revelations will change the US government's policy.

"Duncan Campbell [the British investigative journalist who broke the Zircon cover-up story], James Bamford [US journalist] and Julian Assange and me and the New Yorker, we've all written the notion there's constant surveillance, but he [Snowden] produced a document and that changed the whole nature of the debate, it's real now," Hersh says.

"Editors love documents. Chicken-shit editors who wouldn't touch stories like that, they love documents, so he changed the whole ball game," he adds, before qualifying his remarks.

"But I don't know if it's going to mean anything in the long [run] because the polls I see in America – the president can still say to voters 'al-Qaida, al-Qaida' and the public will vote two to one for this kind of surveillance, which is so idiotic," he says.

Holding court to a packed audience at City University in London's summer school on investigative journalism, 76-year-old Hersh is on full throttle, a whirlwind of amazing stories of how journalism used to be; how he exposed the My Lai massacre in Vietnam, how he got the Abu Ghraib pictures of American soldiers brutalising Iraqi prisoners, and what he thinks of Edward Snowden.

Hope of redemption

Despite his concern about the timidity of journalism he believes the trade still offers hope of redemption.

"I have this sort of heuristic view that journalism, we possibly offer hope because the world is clearly run by total nincompoops more than ever … Not that journalism is always wonderful, it's not, but at least we offer some way out, some integrity."

His story of how he uncovered the My Lai atrocity is one of old-fashioned shoe-leather journalism and doggedness. Back in 1969, he got a tip about a 26-year-old platoon leader, William Calley, who had been charged by the army with alleged mass murder.

Instead of picking up the phone to a press officer, he got into his car and started looking for him in the army camp of Fort Benning in Georgia, where he heard he had been detained. From door to door he searched the vast compound, sometimes blagging his way, marching up to the reception, slamming his fist on the table and shouting: "Sergeant, I want Calley out now."

Eventually his efforts paid off with his first story appearing in the St Louis Post-Despatch, which was then syndicated across America and eventually earned him the Pulitzer Prize. "I did five stories. I charged $100 for the first, by the end the [New York] Times were paying $5,000."

He was hired by the New York Times to follow up the Watergate scandal and ended up hounding Nixon over Cambodia. Almost 30 years later, Hersh made global headlines all over again with his exposure of the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib.

Put in the hours

For students of journalism his message is put the miles and the hours in. He knew about Abu Ghraib five months before he could write about it, having been tipped off by a senior Iraqi army officer who risked his own life by coming out of Baghdad to Damascus to tell him how prisoners had been writing to their families asking them to come and kill them because they had been "despoiled".

"I went five months looking for a document, because without a document, there's nothing there, it doesn't go anywhere."

Hersh returns to US president Barack Obama. He has said before that the confidence of the US press to challenge the US government collapsed post 9/11, but he is adamant that Obama is worse than Bush.

"Do you think Obama's been judged by any rational standards? Has Guantanamo closed? Is a war over? Is anyone paying any attention to Iraq? Is he seriously talking about going into Syria? We are not doing so well in the 80 wars we are in right now, what the hell does he want to go into another one for. What's going on [with journalists]?" he asks.

He says investigative journalism in the US is being killed by the crisis of confidence, lack of resources and a misguided notion of what the job entails.

"Too much of it seems to me is looking for prizes. It's journalism looking for the Pulitzer Prize," he adds. "It's a packaged journalism, so you pick a target like – I don't mean to diminish because anyone who does it works hard – but are railway crossings safe and stuff like that, that's a serious issue but there are other issues too.

"Like killing people, how does [Obama] get away with the drone programme, why aren't we doing more? How does he justify it? What's the intelligence? Why don't we find out how good or bad this policy is? Why do newspapers constantly cite the two or three groups that monitor drone killings. Why don't we do our own work?

"Our job is to find out ourselves, our job is not just to say – here's a debate' our job is to go beyond the debate and find out who's right and who's wrong about issues. That doesn't happen enough. It costs money, it costs time, it jeopardises, it raises risks. There are some people – the New York Times still has investigative journalists but they do much more of carrying water for the president than I ever thought they would … it's like you don't dare be an outsider any more."

He says in some ways President George Bush's administration was easier to write about. "The Bush era, I felt it was much easier to be critical than it is [of] Obama. Much more difficult in the Obama era," he said.

Asked what the solution is Hersh warms to his theme that most editors are pusillanimous and should be fired.

"I'll tell you the solution, get rid of 90% of the editors that now exist and start promoting editors that you can't control," he says. I saw it in the New York Times, I see people who get promoted are the ones on the desk who are more amenable to the publisher and what the senior editors want and the trouble makers don't get promoted. Start promoting better people who look you in the eye and say 'I don't care what you say'.

Nor does he understand why the Washington Post held back on the Snowden files until it learned the Guardian was about to publish.

If Hersh was in charge of US Media Inc, his scorched earth policy wouldn't stop with newspapers.

"I would close down the news bureaus of the networks and let's start all over, tabula rasa. The majors, NBCs, ABCs, they won't like this – just do something different, do something that gets people mad at you, that's what we're supposed to be doing," he says.

Hersh is currently on a break from reporting, working on a book which undoubtedly will make for uncomfortable reading for both Bush and Obama.

"The republic's in trouble, we lie about everything, lying has become the staple." And he implores journalists to do something about it.


We learned this morning that our newest Global Network board member Luis Gutiérrez-Esparza from Mexico City has unexpectedly passed away.  This is sad and shocking news for us.

Luis had been on our email list for several years and came to our Sweden space conference last June.  His humble and open personality quickly endeared him to many of us.  We enjoyed his quick wit and were thrilled to have him agree to join our board of advisers - our first board member from Latin America.

Luis was a journalist and an academic and as soon as he got back to Mexico he wrote an article for a newspaper about our conference.  Since our board members are spread around the world we mostly communicate via email and he was always one of the first to respond to any board matters.

I learned this tragic news from GN board convener Dave Webb in England.  He wrote in part, "It's a great shock. I saw him not so long ago in Sarajevo and he seemed fine. We spent quite a bit of time together."

We become family very quickly in the activist world - our work, our meetings, and our lives are intense.  When we make new friends we hold them close to our hearts.  This loss will be hard to handle.  Luis was a good man and was becoming a good friend to many of us.

We send our love and best wishes to his grieving family and friends in Mexico.


  • I received an email this morning from Greenland. Kuupik Kleist, the premier of Greenland from 2009 - 2013, wrote to ask for Global Network support as people there struggle to stop uranium mining on their lands.  Kleist attended and spoke at our Global Network space conference in 2002 that was held in Leeds, England.  Unfortunately there is not yet much information about all of this available in English.  Activists in Greenland have started a Facebook page called "Naamik qujaannarpunga".  Kleist writes:
"I wanted to draw your attention to a movement against lifting Greenland's zero tolerance towards excavation and export of uranium in Greenland. The government will present a bill for the Parliament on lifting the 0-tolerance in few days, October 8. The company holding the license to the project which potentially could be one of the largest uranium mines (open pitch) in the world is Australian - 'Greenland Minerals and Energy' (GME) - a subsidiary of another larger company. Their license is actually not for uranium but for Rare Earth Elements (REE) - but the deposit in question is a mix of both REE's and Uranium. The company now claims that it will not be feasible to go only for the REE's if they do not get a permit for including the uranium, as a bi-product. But we do suspect that uranium will be the main product over time."
  • Our efforts here in Bath, Maine to oppose more tax breaks (corporate welfare) for General Dynamics continue to blossom.  Because I am so busy working on the Maine Drone Peace Walk others in the community have picked up the effort and are doing tremendous outreach across the community.  I might have previously mentioned this but it is worth saying again, we recently learned from a city worker that the Bath City Council was hearing "overwhelming" opposition from city residents to any further tax breaks for General Dynamics.  

Thursday, September 26, 2013


Watch this woman steal a baseball from a little girl.  It's the perfect example of the mindless greedy me-first culture we live in.  Not a thought that she'd taken away some little girl's great pleasure of getting a foul ball at the game.  Then she goes and high-fives (something I don't like doing under any circumstance) as if she'd done something real spectacular.

Fortunately the announcers had enough heart to send a ball down to the little girl.  But surely this girl learned an important lesson about the way things are in America.  Take what you want even if you have to run over a little girl.  That's American "exceptionalism" in a nut shell. 

It should also be noted that this game was played in Houston, Texas. Enough said.......


Interview with Leonard Yannielli from Vinalhaven, Maine.  He was real easy to interview, very smart and quite eloquent.  A real nice man.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


In an address to the United Nations General Assembly, President Obama openly embraced an aggressive military doctrine backed by previous administrations on using armed force beyond the international norm of self-defense.

Obama told the world that the US is prepared to use its military to defend what he called "our core interests" in the Middle East: U.S. access to oil.

"[Obama] basically came out and said the U.S. is an imperialist nation and we’re going to do whatever we need to do to conquer areas [and] take resources from people around the world," says independent journalist Jeremy Scahill. "It’s a really naked declaration of imperialism ... When we look back at Obama’s legacy, this is going to have been a very significant period in U.S. history where the ideals of very radical right-wing forces were solidified. President Obama has been a forceful, fierce defender of empire."


Veteran peace activist Kathy Kelly (Voices for Creative Nonviolence) will join the Maine Drone Peace Walk for our last two important events.

On Friday, Oct 18 the walk will reach the state capital in Augusta and hold a 3:00 pm closing ceremony inside the Hall of Flags.  This permitted event will give us the chance to bring our message of "no unwarranted drone surveillance" and "no weaponized drone testing" directly to the state house and the office of Gov. LePage.  Kathy Kelly will be among the speakers at this closing.  The public is invited to join us. 

Then on Saturday, Oct 19 we will meet at the Addams-Melman House (212 Centre St) in Bath at 9:30 am and walk together as a group to BIW for our protest at the "christening" ceremony of the new Zumwalt "stealth" destroyer.  The protest will be from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and the police have agreed to block off a street for us to use as a rally site just across from the public entrance to the BIW ceremony.  We'll gather on the corner of Washington & Hinckley Streets.  Kathy Kelly will also speak at this event as will national Veterans for Peace activist Tarak Kauff and others.

You can see a Raytheon promo video about the Zumwalt destroyer just above. These new destroyers are going to cost about $4 billion each.  Previous versions of Navy destroyers were costing $1.5 billion each.

For details about the daily schedule of the entire Maine Drone Peace Walk please click here

If you are planning to walk for only a day please feel free to meet us at the morning start spot listed on the above schedule.  We'll help you shuttle your car.

If you plan to spend one or more nights with the walk please let us know ASAP so that we can inform our local hosts who are arranging local home hospitality for walkers.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


  • I brought in wood this morning and filled up the racks near our two wood stoves.  The weather is turning here, getting colder at night, and time to prepare for the change.
  • I also started digging up one of our potato beds - rough on the back - but very satisfying to find big and small taters beneath the black dirt.  Had to take a break and will do more later today and tomorrow.  Need to run to Brunswick and drop off the DVD's from my latest TV show to the station there and check the mail.  My Italian scooter, had it about three months now, is proving to be good for those short trips.
  • Getting more calls about the drone peace walk, as we get closer more people are making the decision to participate.  Years ago in Florida I always had folks register in advance for a walk but here in Maine have not done so.  It's one less task to have to keep track of but does limit my ability to make people have to decide on paper what they intend to do.  It does help planning when you know how many folks are going to join in.  Six of one, a half-dozen of the other.
  • Wednesday night is our weekly radio show called Truth Radio Underground Experience (TRUE), with co-host Peter Woodruff, on WBOR at Bowdoin College in Brunswick.  We do two-hours of political music and commentary from 6-8 pm (EST).  Usually when a new semester begins we get moved to another time slot but this one we got to keep our regular show time.  Helps build an audience when you have some predictability.  It's always a nice experience to get away from the computer and listen to some good music.  Peter does a great job finding new songs and commentaries for us to play.


This is a video of activists working in the coalition dropping multiple banners from the US Trade Representatives Building in Washington, DC to protest the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP).  The groups sought to expose the secret negotiations that have been ongoing throughout the five years of the Obama administration and mobilize people concerned about workers, the environment, banking, food, water, Internet freedom and other issues to take action to oppose the TPP.  The TPP will give large transnational corporations absolute power over our lives and make them more powerful than governments.

Monday, September 23, 2013


On September 19th the Congressional Drone Caucus had a joint party and exhibit with the drone lobby AUVSI. Horrified by the smug relationship between our elected officials and the merchants of robotic death, CODEPINK decided to remind party goers about all the innocent people killed by their drones.

Learn how you can resist drones and the war machine at the 2013 CODEPINK Drone Summit- more info can be found here


Nipponzan Myohoji monk Br. Senji Kaneda from Bainbridge Island, Washington will lead our Maine Drone Peace Walk on October 10-19
Buddhist nun Jun-san Yasuda

  • I talked with Jun-san Yasuda this morning about our upcoming Maine Drone Peace Walk.  She told me that it is confirmed that Nipponzan Myohoji monk Br. Senji Kaneda (from Bainbridge Island, Washington) will be joining us for the walk.  I walked for two days with Kaneda-shonin some years ago on their annual Hiroshima-Nagasaki peace walk out in the northwest.  So we are thrilled that he will be leading our walk.  It appears that a large delegation of Japanese will be coming as well - likely around eight or so.  It's going to be special.  The Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist order does peace walks and builds peace pagodas all over the world.
  • I also spoke this morning to our hosts in Presque Isle, way up in northern Maine where we will stay on our second night of the walk.  They vigil weekly on a bridge in their community - about four of them.  So this small, isolated and determined peace group is quite happy about having an infusion of peaceniks in their otherwise conservative part of the state.
  • Yesterday I worked at the Veterans for Peace (VFP) table at the Common Ground Country Fair for several hours.  VFP had a booth for the whole three-day fair and I was lucky to get our banner for the walk made in time to hang it over our tables.  It was reported that 27,000 people came to the fair just on Saturday so alot of eyes during the course of the weekend read the words "Maine Drone Peace Walk" as they passed by.  While there yesterday our Maine Attorney General Janet Mills (Democrat) came up to the table with a friend and I tried to hand her a flyer about the walk.  She declined to take it.  During our effort last spring, along with the Maine ACLU, to get a bill passed in the state legislature that would require police to have a warrant before they could do surveillance with a drone it was Mills who tried to kill they bill.  It was from her that we learned about the Presque Isle airport wanting to put a "weaponized drone test bed" up in Aroostook County.  Mills claimed that drones could become "an economic driver" in the state and that nothing should be done to inhibit that from happening.  That's why we decided to start our drone walk up in that very rural and isolated area of Maine.
  • I'm having alot of fun organizing the walk.  I am getting to do some statewide work which is my greatest joy because you can often see more immediate results from your efforts.  I also love the logistical parts of organizing a walk.  I guess this must make the 7th walk I've organized, the 3rd here in Maine and while working for the Florida Coalition for Peace & Justice I put together four of them.  Each time I say "this will be my last one" but they are magical experiences.  There are always rich stories to tell about people we meet and extraordinary moments of kindness that they bring to us on these walks.  I am very excited.


Sunday, September 22, 2013


Saturday, September 21, 2013


  •  I'm on the Amtrak regional train heading back north to Boston.  This train makes more stops but the seats are much roomier and more comfortable than on the more expensive express train.  When I get to Boston I'll then hop on a bus back to Portland where MB will pick me up for the ride home.  I hear that eggplant parmesan is on the menu for supper tonight at the Addams-Melman House.  Perfect!
  • My talk last night at the Catholic Worker Mary House in NYC was quite stimulating.  Lots of interaction with those in the audience.  It was a mix of veteran activists, curious people who'd never been to one of the Friday night events held there, and others.  One 86 year old man told me he worked on the Henry Wallace Progressive Party campaign for president in 1948 and is disgusted these days because most people he knows only think and talk about the New York Yankees.
  • Much to my surprise VFP friends Tarak Kauff and Ellen Davidson came to the event.  Ellen arrived on time (she lives nearby in the city) but her partner Tarak drove down from his house in Woodstock and spent about an hour trying to find a parking place near Mary House.  He made it in time to hear the question and answer period - I repeated a few of my key points for his benefit.  We went out for a beer and a bite after the event at an Indian restaurant a couple of blocks away.  Tarak and Ellen are helping to organize a VFP protest in NYC on October 7 at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza that closes at 10:00 pm.  Last year quite a few VFP members and supporters were arrested there for reading the names of Afghanistan war dead beyond the closing time. 
  • Mary House organizers made a small room in the large building available for me to sleep in.  I was up on the third floor and there was at least one more floor above me.  I read that it used to be a music school before becoming a Catholic Worker house.  There is little information about the history of the house on the Internet.  I was told that currently there are about 30 people living there, several of the leaders that I spoke with have been involved with the house since the 1970's.
  • There is alot of history on the walls of the community room where I spoke.  Posters of Dorothy Day, Cesar Chavez and Martin Luther King Jr were among the other anti-war messages in view.  There was much buzz about the new Catholic Pope Francis - similar to what I have been hearing everywhere else I go.  Long disaffected Catholics are feeling hopeful that the church might be changing.  I'd guess the church finally realized that recent priest sex scandals, declining church participation (in Europe and the US at least), the hypocrisy of the church as their Vatican Bank invests in weapons production and birth control, and refusal to allow serious roles for women in church hierarchy made those at the top decide they needed to make some major adjustments before they slid into total obscurity.  They still might.
  • The New York Times today has an interesting story about a Republican congressional primary race in Mobile, Alabama.  One of several Tea Party candidates in the race is quoted as saying “We are witnessing the end of a Western Christian empire.”  It's a point I made in my talk last night that some folks across our land just can't get over this "American exceptionalism" mythology that believes we should be running the world because we are #1, god's chosen people, the smartest, the wisest etc.  Just amazing to see this - not much difference between that thinking and the thinking of radical Muslim fundamentalists.  Both similarly dangerous.  Goes to show that the long brainwashing of the American people along these lines still holds fast in many parts of the country.



Global Network board member Holly Gwinn Graham (Olympia, Washington) doing her rock-folk love show.

On horns, flute and harp is John Croarkin. On piano is Brian Kinsella. Dan Walker played guitar. Singing were Hilary Lewis, Anne Kerr, and Margi Carlson.

All songs were originals by Holly Gwinn Graham, aside from Love Train (the O'Jays), Children's Crusade (Sting), Common Ground (Ivan Lins and others), Save The Country (Laura Nyro), Five Pound Box O' Money, Imagine (Lennon), and Redemption Day (Sheryl Crow).

Set 1

Common Ground,
Earth Anthem,
Love Will Prevail
No Frackin' Way
A Little Blue and Green
Save the Country

Set 2

Camp Lemmonier's Drones
Redemption Day
Children's Crusade
Song for a Russian (Afghan, Iranian, Iraqi, Pakistani) Mother
Love Will Lead Me
Put Your Shoulder to It
Five Pound Box o' Money
Love Train
Flying Bras at Sunset

Drone was written for Holly's upcoming jazz/folk/rock musical about America's endless wars and the cost on the human psyche and the soul, to honor the 100th birthday in 2014 of the Fellowship of Reconciliation.

Video by Robert Whitlock

Friday, September 20, 2013


Six CUNY Students Violently Arrested Protesting Ex-General David Petraeus

News Release

Six students were arrested Tuesday evening in an unprovoked police attack against a peaceful protest lead by City University of New York (CUNY) students and faculty decrying the University’s appointment of former CIA chief and ex-General, David Petraeus as an adjunct professor to the Honors College. Students were punched, pushed against parked vehicles and thrown to the pavement by police captains and officers after the NYPD forced them off the sidewalk and into the street. Tuesday’s demonstration was called for by the Ad Hoc Committee Against the Militarization of CUNY.

The arrested students were arraigned Wednesday evening, September 18, at the Manhattan Criminal Court located at 100 Centre Street. The courtroom was flooded with supporters ranging from activists, to fellow students, to CUNY faculty outraged at the NYPD’s response to their student’s attempts to peaceably assemble.

“As students were chanting ‘War Criminal Petraeus Out of CUNY Now,’ I was shocked to see several police officers grab and brutalize one of the demonstrators,” said City College student Yexenia Vanegas. “This was completely unprovoked, as demonstrators made [it] clear that they were there to defend our university in a peaceful protest.”

The attack occurred in front of CUNY’s Macaulay Honors College, where Petraeus has been appointed to teach a class on public policy. “Protestors were marching in a circle on the sidewalk and chanting, but the police forced them into the street and then charged. One of the most brutal things I saw was that five police officers slammed a Queens College student face down to the pavement across the street from Macaulay, put their knees on his back and he was then repeatedly kneed in the back,” said Hunter student Michael Brian. “The student was one of those pointed out by ‘white shirt’ officers, then seized and brutalized. A Latina student was heaved through the air and slammed to the ground.”

 A broad range of CUNY students, faculty and staff members, have been carrying out a campaign of “protest and exposure” against the Board of Trustees’ appointment of Petraeus, whose documented actions as Iraq/Afghanistan war commander and CIA chief include drone strikes on civilians, the use of “enhanced interrogation” centers and the use of white phosphorus weapons in Fallujah, despite international restrictions on their use. 


  • I am sitting in the train station in Boston with time on my hands.  It's a three-hour wait for my train to New York City where I speak tonight at the Mary House.  This is the Catholic Worker house created by Dorothy Day many years ago.  It's been a long tradition there to hold an event every Friday night that they call "Clarification of Thought" where they host various folks to speak on a particular subject.  I was invited to talk tonight about the militarization of space, its costs, and the Global Network's upcoming Keep Space for Peace Week on October 5-12.  It's really an honor to be invited and I look forward to the experience.
  • I head back home Saturday on an early morning train.  On Sunday I'll be up to the popular Maine Common Ground Fair to help staff our Veterans For Peace table.  We'll be promoting the upcoming Maine Drone Peace Walk during the three-day fair.  A banner has been made for the walk and will be hung at the VFP booth during the fair.  Leaflets will be handed out to fair goers inviting them to walk with us.
  • The food stamp vote last night in Washington DC is emblematic of the kind of hypocrisy and corruption of the spirit that we find in Congress these days.  The video below by the California congresswoman clearly reveals how members of Congress use taxpayer funds to lavish themselves with expensive "fact finding" trips around the world where they enjoy the finest food and drink.  Then they come home and complain about our huge national budget crisis and "welfare cheaters".  This is the kind of corruption that revolutions are made out of.
  • From my hometown of Bath I got an email this morning from another person who is helping to organize city wide opposition to General Dynamics Corporation's (which owns Bath Iron Works - BIW) request for a massive tax break from our city of about 9,000 residents.  In the email to me my fellow Bath concerned citizen reports on a recent conversation with the city tax assessor who said that the city council has "had overwhelming input from citizens, all against the TIF [tax break]."  A growing number of concerned citizens in Bath are requesting a public forum so that the people can have a chance to learn more about the intentionally complicated formulas behind this thing they call a TIF (Tax Increment Financing) which is nothing more than a mind-numbing way of handing out real serious welfare to already well-to-do corporations.
  • Last year the CEO of General Dynamics made $18 million in compensation.  The entire annual municipal budget of our small city of Bath is about $15 million.  But in order to keep profits at high levels, at a time when the outrageous Pentagon budget is being trimmed just a teenie-weenie bit, these greedy weapons corporations are squeezing everyone they can.  The workers at BIW are being squeezed by a pay freeze, lay-offs that mean workers have to do the jobs of 2-3 others, and now efforts are being made to get taxpayers in Bath to pay for shipyard expansion.  The city is threatened by General Dynamics that they might have to pull-out of Maine if they don't get their way.  I'd call that extortion.  BIW is increasingly mechanizing their operation thus enabling them to lay off more workers and maximize profits.  So Bath residents are asked to fork over more money to help General Dynamics lay off more workers!  It's an outrage.  No wonder that the citizens of Bath are "overwhelmingly" opposed to more welfare for this fat corporation.
  • At some point it just might be good to begin talking about ending the profit making system that drives the appetite of the military industrial complex.  Where does it say that we have to make weapons production a profit making scheme?  Isn't it time to nationalize the weapons making process and begin the conversion of the industry to peaceful and sustainable production?  Let's build rail systems and not more weapons of destruction.


Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) decided to make an unconventional pitch on the House of Representatives floor Thursday to defend food stamps. Speier used a cooked steak, a bottle of vodka, and a can of caviar to point out members of Congress who had large numbers of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients in their districts but opposed the program. The congresswoman pointed out many of the same members of Congress took trips around the world with large stipends for food and lodging.

Thee House of Un-Representatives voted last night by a margin of 217-210 to cut $39 billion from the food stamp program.  It's becoming "unpopular" to feed the poor.

The Senate is not likely to agree with the House on such a high level of cuts.

According to the Census Bureau, almost 14 percent of households in the United States received food stamps in 2012, a total of 16.6 million households. Almost half the recipients, 48 percent, are non-Hispanic whites; 26 percent are black and 21 percent are Hispanics.

The five states with the biggest share of people on food stamps are, in descending order, Mississippi (19 percent) and Kentucky, Maine, Michigan and Tennessee, all at 18 percent. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013


Fox News interviews Assad in Syria.  Former Rep. Dennis Kucinich and a regular Fox News reporter do the interviewing.

Kucinich needs to look for another job - he is a lousy interviewer and missed an opportunity to really provide the American people with a clearer view of Assad and Syria.  The regular Fox News reporter was even worse.

Assad saved the interview by telling the truth about US, British, French, and Saudi intervention in the internal affairs of Syria by funding the "rebels" who are largely Al-Quida terrorists.

There are many citizen critics inside Syria and they should have been left to deal with their political problems without the "exceptional" nation, the USA, deciding to fund and direct chaos and destruction there.

We've got enough problems here in the US and have no moral or ethical right to be lecturing other leaders about violence, transparency or democracy.


In this parody of Star Wars, episode 4, a new hope- It is a period of class war. The DIDACTIC EMPIRE, striking from a hidden base, have won a major victory against the OPEN ALLIANCE with the passage of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement). During the battle to fast track the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership), Luke Whistleblower managed to steal secret plans to the Empire's ultimate weapon, the DEATH STAR, which has enough power to make nations subservient to corporations. Pursued by Emperor Pipeline and Dark Banker with their captive Barack Obama, Princess Laidoff is able to foil the DIDACTIC EMPIRE and help the OPEN ALLIANCE Destroy the TPP DEATH STAR.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


Preserve our Privacy: No Drone Spying in Maine
Limestone to Bath
October 10-19

Peace activists from Maine and beyond will walk through large portions of our state from October 10-19 in order to bring the issue of drone surveillance at home and drone killing overseas to the public’s attention.  The walk will begin in Limestone in Aroostook County and end in Bath.

President Obama has announced that as many as 30,000 drones will be flying around the US doing surveillance of the American people in the coming years. Thirty-seven states have applied to host one of six military drone test centers across the nation.

There is much talk about bringing drones to Maine and making the Presque Isle airport a weaponized drone test center, thus the reason for starting the walk in Aroostook County.

Last spring the Maine legislature passed a bill that would require police to obtain a warrant before snooping on citizens across the state.  Gov. LePage vetoed the bill.

According to Lisa Savage, co-coordinator of the Maine Campaign to Bring Our War $$ Home, “This walk is important to raise awareness of how the government spends our tax dollars on very expensive drones to keep us all under surveillance. Drones are being used to kill thousands of innocent civilians, including hundreds of children, around the world. People here in the U.S. say they want their tax dollars spent on health care, education, jobs and veterans benefits -- not drones.”

Doug Rawlings from Maine Veterans For Peace said, “As I walk down these Maine roads that I have driven for the past 35 years, I will be going past bridges and schools that have been built since World War II military expenditures were converted over into infrastructure funds. My father's generation put away the munitions and started building the country that has given us the life we now lead.  Over forty years ago I served in an artillery unit in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. Our howitzers dropped rounds on countless Vietnamese peasants, and I didn't blink an eye. Now I realize the anguish we wrought then, and visit now on Afghan and Pakistani children with our Predator drones.  I cannot, in good conscience, accept or support such a use of my tax dollars.”

The drone walk begins in Limestone on October 10 and will pass through Caribou, Presque Isle, Old Town, Bangor, Skowhegan, Mercer, Farmington, Waterville, Belgrade, Augusta and Bath. (Some driving will be necessary between some of these communities.  The walk will average about 13 miles per day.  In the evenings walkers will be fed at local churches and will stay in local homes.)

On October 18 the walkers will hold a protest against drones inside the Hall of Flags at the state capital in Augusta at 3:00 pm.

The walk will conclude on October 19 with a 10:00 am protest in Bath at the “christening” of the Navy’s first “stealth” destroyer at Bath Iron Works. 

Buddhist monks and nuns from the Nipponzan Myohoji order will lead the non-violent peace walk. 

The walk is being organized by Maine Veterans For Peace and the Maine Campaign to Bring Our War $$ Home.  The walk will be held during Keep Space for Peace Week and is just one of many such events that will be held around the world.

The daily schedule and entire walk route can be found at


September 5th, 2013, Raleigh, NC - As Walmart workers petition managers to reinstate employees who have been unfairly treated, a flash mob breaks out.

Did you know it's your right to form a union?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


My father, Kenneth Gagnon (front center), with his family around 1926

A dear friend once told me that her parents thought I had no ambition.  But that wasn’t quite the case; it is more complicated than that.  The real issue, summed up in my long-lost father’s worn letters to my mom (kept secret until I finally got to read them at 23 years old) written soon after their separation around 1954, was that “I couldn’t imagine making money off other people’s misery.”  My mother (Gaetana Ruth Amelia DiCapua), the product of a social climbing Italian immigrant family, had asked him in a previous letter why he didn’t become a lawyer like her Uncle Arthur instead of wanting to be a farmer.  In my mother’s world my dad had no ambition.  Something had to be wrong with him for sure – he didn’t seem to grasp the essence of the American dream.

My mother married my French-Canadian father (Kenneth Gagnon) who was a chicken and turkey farmer in Maryland and had no electricity.  His first 14 years were spent living in upstate New York near the Canadian border, the family moving to Maryland around 1930 when Western Union offered his father a job in the Washington DC area.  My mother’s sister remembered my dad as a shy person who quietly read books when the family got together.  She called him a genius and a nice person.  He appeared to be a back to nature guy way ahead of his time.  He put electricity into the farm, bought a TV for his new bride, but mom grew bored with the country life and eventually got him to sell his beloved small farm.  He was never the same after that.  They moved to Florida to start a new life. 

When I was about two years old dad came home one day saying he wanted to go to Georgia to pick peaches. Mom threw him out and we really never saw him again.  (My oldest sister remembers him coming by one time but mom called the police and had him chased away.  He wrote on the side of our house with charcoal “I love you kids” and was gone for good.)  In another of his letters, that my mother kept secret all those years, he wrote, “By now you’ve probably taught the kids to hate me.”  He knew my mother well, but underestimated the deep feelings we had developed for him in our short time together.

My cousin Bob Jr. said dad moved in with them for a while after the divorce, and cried a lot. Uncle Bobby was dad’s younger brother, and one day came home to find the keys to dad’s car on the table with a note.  "Bobby you take the car” my dad wrote to his brother; “I’m going away for a while.” A good long while it turned out to be.  Uncle Bobby only heard from his big brother once more, around 1961, when he got a postcard from Paris that said, “I’m traveling around Europe.”

By then mother (with her three young children) had met and married an Air Force enlisted man from Rumford (a town in western Maine’s logging country).  He grew up in that paper mill culture where his father worked.  He was wild and rebellious and the story was that Wesley, who was very bright and talented but also a hard drinker, got in trouble with the law at an early age and was given a choice of either the military or jail.  He picked the military.

In 1961, the Air Force moved us all to Leicester, England, at the same time dad was “traveling around Europe.”  Throughout my younger years I often had the feeling my vanquished father was watching me from the shadows.  Once in the mid-60’s while living in Wiesbaden, Germany I stopped dead while playing basketball on the school’s outdoor court, convinced that I “felt” his presence nearby.

My mother and stepfather used to argue about money all the time.  Wes took in my mom’s first three kids and they had three more together – the large combined family barely getting by on an enlisted man’s pay.  Like a true Mainer, Wes could fix anything and worked many nights repairing people’s cars to bring in extra cash. But even with that extraordinary effort mom still hounded him about money.  I began having horrible nightmares where an evil little man came to me demanding “money, money, money” or else he would kill me.  I woke up crying and would go downstairs and sit between the feuding couple and tell them about my dream.  For the moment they’d stop their money-wars and my peacemaking task would be over for the night.  But their fights continued, and so did my bad dreams.

So I don’t think I ever lacked ambition, I just didn’t have the killer instinct that is often seen as a positive trait in our overly competitive dog-eat-dog American culture.  I didn’t want to “make money off other people’s misery” – or put another way I didn’t “want to be miserable making money”.  I am now convinced that my dad, in those first two years of my life, had a profound spiritual impact on me.

In 1984 while living in Orlando I had a dream one night.  There was a knock on the door and when I opened it a man stood there with a book in his hand.  “Are you Bruce Gagnon,” he asked?  Yes I replied.  “Your father just died,” he told me.  “He wanted you to have this book.”

Two weeks later, in the real world, the phone rang.  When I answered it a woman on the other end asked me a familiar question, “Are you Bruce Gagnon?”  “Yes” I replied.  “Your father died two weeks ago.  I was married to him the last eight years of his life.  You should come to Tucson to pick up his things.”

My two older sisters and I went to Tucson and began to learn about our mystery man father.  He met his wife at a senior citizen dance and was the citywide shuffleboard champion.  She gave me his trophies.  He had lived in Latin America for some time.  He told his wife about his three kids but made excuses for having no contact with them.  She said I looked like dad, walked like him, laughed like him, and more.

When my son Julian was still a baby, during pre-language time, I showed him a brick wall in an alley teeming with bug life.  In that moment I realized that we were communicating on a level beyond language.  He understood everything I was saying to him.  I figure that my father and I had experienced the same kind of connection – a spiritual bond.

I obviously rejected the traditional route with my life.  After being treated like an expendable number, and feeling like a prisoner while serving in the Air Force during the Vietnam War, I was looking for meaning beyond dollar signs and other such status symbols like cars, expensive houses, and fancy job titles. 

All my life I’ve been striving for something that seemed more real to me.  I remember that one of my sisters once said to me, “I hope you find what you are looking for.”  Upon reflection I have to say that I have.  It’s a peace of mind.  I found a life where I am a free agent – free to think for myself, and most importantly free to speak and act, as I feel compelled by my conscience.  No amount of money could every replace that kind of freedom. 

In many ways I have to thank my dad for that gift.


  • The Washington DC Navy Yard shooting yesterday appears to have been done by a man who had been discharged from the Navy active reserves after several years service.  The Navy Yard is home to the Naval Sea Systems Command and home to Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command that oversees support, integration and acquisition of the U.S. Aegis "missile defense" systems deployed throughout the Navy and around the world. It is also home to the Chief of Naval Operations for the US Navy.
  • I need to make a correction from our recent Global Network newsletter.  In our Odds & Ends section we had a bit about NATO wanting to bring Finland into the alliance.  In recent years a large drone test area has been established in Finland right alongside of Russia's border.  I made a mistake in the newsletter when I said that during the Cold War Finland had been part of the Warsaw Pact military bloc.  In fact Finland was a neutral country during that period and has, since the end of WW II, tried to maintain positive relations with the former Soviet Union and now Russia.  (Finland was used by Nazi Germany during WW II as a base of operations.)  This current drive by the US-NATO alliance to militarily surround Russia is escalating tensions and peace activists in Finland are deeply worried about the implications for increased instability between their country and Russia due to NATO expansion.
  • I taped another edition of my public access TV show This Issue yesterday.  Peace activist, and former micro-biology professor, Leonard Yannielli from Vinalhaven, Maine was my guest.  He's written a book called Moon Shadow of War about his experiences being fired from a teaching job for opposing the Vietnam War.  We mostly talked about the Syria issue and our Maine congressional delegation's positions on the war - in particular the views of Sen. Angus King which I reported on in previous posts.  Leonard was especially eloquent about the hypocrisy of the US when it comes to past use of Agent Orange in Vietnam and more recent use of depleted uranium in Iraq.
  • The Maine Drone Peace Walk will occupy most of my time in the next few weeks.  The walk route is now mapped and most of the big logistical issues (housing and suppers) are being worked on by local hosts.  My job now is to continue to spread word and recruit walkers and begin media work.  I've got to get the lead walk banner made next and a flyer to hand out to the public as we walk.  Looks like we are going to have a good number of folks walk with us.  Tarak Kauff, a leading activist with national Veterans For Peace, called the other day and said he'd be joining us near the end of the walk.  Kathy Kelly is coming as well near the end and I've heard that Medea Benjamin is going to try to join us as well.  We'll have some powerful speakers for our October 18 walk finale ceremony inside the state capital Hall of Flags (at 3:00 pm). The October 19 Bath Iron Works new stealth destroyer "christening" protest (10:00 am) will also be bigger than usual this time around.
  • We continue to hear from people ordering bulk copies of our latest Space Alert newsletter.  Just yesterday I sent bunches to peace activists in northern California and to a Veterans For Peace chapter in southern California.  We've never had a response like this to any of our newsletters before.  I'm afraid we are going to run out of them - might have to do a second printing!

Sunday, September 15, 2013


In Colombia after 21 days of a nationwide strike by thousands of farmers, blocking more than 40 roads nationwide, protesting farmers forced the Colombian government to negotiate the rejection of a farm bill and the release of detained protesters.


David Petraeus may be regretting taking a teaching position at the City University of New York system. A video recently posted to YouTube shows the former director of the CIA and retired Army general being followed down the street on his way to his first class by a small, but passionate group of students. It’s hard to make out a lot of what they’re saying, but there’s a lot of “war criminal!” And a general sense that they don’t like him very much. This comes after Petraeus’ salary was lowered from a controversial $200,000 to just one dollar to teach a course at the honors college this fall titled “Are We on the Threshold of the North American Decade?” The whole experience must be a major culture shock for a retired four-star general. Generals enjoy a tremendous amount of special treatment, including personal chefs and valets, and are revered in the military community. Now, he’s being chased down the street and screamed at by a group of young students.

Saturday, September 14, 2013


The Thai telecommunications conglomerate True is getting rave reviews worldwide for its latest spot, "Giving," which tells the story of a man unexpectedly rewarded for a lifetime of good deeds he performed without expecting anything in return.


Back cove in New Harbor, just a few minutes walk from our cabin

We just returned home today after a week away in New Harbor, Maine.  Last year MB and I went there for our vacation and the only thing we could afford was a small two room place in the village area just a couple blocks from the beautiful back cove.  We spent that time walking along the rocky coastline and decided to come back again this year if we could swing it.

We found a cottage right on the coast but the cost for a week was more than we could handle.  So we talked with Addams-Melman housemate Karen Wainberg and she decided to join us. 

MB also invited her dear friend Marian Stanton from Massachusetts to come along.  MB and Marian have been close friends since they were in first grade in Cambridge.  Marian is a wonderful photographer and took these fantastic pictures.  You can see others that she took while with us here.

One day MB, Marian and I took the ferry boat out to Monhegan Island, an hour ride.  We did the hike up the rocky cliffs and thru the woods.  On one side of the island, with the wind blowing hard, we viewed the remains of a shipwreck from years past.

On another day we went just a few miles down the road from our cottage to Pemaquid Point that is famous for their lighthouse and magical rocks.  (We thought about the coastline on Jeju Island, South Korea while here.)  We were particularly taken by a part of the shore area where cairns were assembled by people who visit this spot.  I was drawn to this place and began making many of these wonderful sculptures - I posted one the other day that I decorated with purple seaweed, kind of a self portrait.
A wonderful sacred playground....I have to go back do do this some more.

We did lots of walking and sitting on the porch looking at the incredible view of the ocean.  For a couple days we had huge thunderstorms and intense fog which obscured our view but brought a cozy feeling to our cabin.
The bridge between our cottage and the back cove

View out of our cottage porch

Most days we went to the local library where we could read the newspaper and download my hundreds of emails.  Then in the evening I'd look through them to see if anything necessitated a quick response or not.  I was able to keep up with the Syria story this way and found myself writing a blog post about the people's initial victory to stop an attack. I also wrote a more personal story and will post it later on.  We also read alot, cooked good meals, and sat by the evening fire. 

We are back home and MB has taken our high school age local friend to the movies.  We'll go for pizza tonight to celebrate the end of our fine vacation.  Tomorrow MB and I will finish mapping the rest of the Maine Drone Peace Walk that I am organizing for October 10-19.  It's coming together well and excitement is building.  Veterans for Peace will hand out information about it during Maine's famous Common Ground Fair later this month.  CodePink Maine coordinator Lisa Savage is also promoting the walk on Facebook so word is spreading.

We often say how lucky we are to live in Maine.  This past week just made that feeling even stronger.