Salon Table Talk - By the Book: The Gospel According to the Shooter's Bible
By Marion Delgado at 12:16 AM
Salon Table Talk - By the Book: The Gospel According to the Shooter's Bible
: "From The Bartender's Bible, the Gospel of Rick, XII-XIV, XX, and XXII
1. And so it came to pass upon one of those sweltering Jerusalem nights where the horseflies cluster under your caftan and the sweat pours down your body until your tunic resembles that of an old and unfirm man with no control of his bowels. 2. Verily, the sort of night that makes goodwives clutch the kitchen knives and eye the thick bull necks of their husbands. The kind of night where quarrels amongst the manservants leave bodies for the centurions in the morning. Out of such a night and into the tavern of Rick came a man of good countenance but much troubled in spirit.
3. Of this scribe the Nazarene for such he was by his talk demanded even the strongest drink in the house. And lo whilst on an ordinary occasion unto him would be proffered Syriac wine this night your servant reached instead for the Nubian. The man drained the fiery wine as it were water and did signal with his hand for another, the which he sipped more thoughtfully.
4. Verily 'twas not to be like this said the man, a carpenter by his thick hands abraded with the rough surfaces of boards and pegs. Forsooth, replied this scribe gingerly, every one which comes into this establishment says that. What troubles ye, stranger? On the morrow I am to be arrested - on the Passover! Woe indeed are me and mine! he did cry out. 5. By this, your servant learned he was of the Jews. As most Greeks in Jerusalem your servant had no problem with the Jews. 'Twas well known that the tavern of Rick was neutral ground that even centurions made pause before violating.
1. And best 'twas thus as with the skill that a tavern owner must acquire this person had learnt already that this must be Joshua of Nazareth and a known rouser of the rabble. I will die! I will be executed! Joshua said even then in the silence that persisted after his admission.
2. Yea verily! said I to him that will be thy fate almost of a certainty. But are not all things in the hands of the one God with you people? GOD! replied he then. Speaketh thou not unto me of GOD would you keep my good will. For it is HE that is source of my troubles down to the last jot and tittle. 3. And this is HIS reward for that I have done nothing but that it was the will of the FATHER. Not alone to die but to be scourged and mocked and whipped and crucified friendless and alone amongst thieves!
4. At that ventured your servant a suggestion that the Nazarene could merely flee. He was known as a man of no entanglements having neither estate nor wives nor issue. I could indeed replied Joshua. Of a course the disciples would needs disband. And GOD would have HIS mission unfulfilled. But for HIM I regard how HE has treated John called the Baptist who never spoke a word nor moved a muscle but that it was the will of the FATHER. That he was beheaded and even his head brought before the whore of a dictator that she might give him a whores smile. Glory be to GODs name. And I like John who has never even lain with a woman!
5. And your servant cannot testify that the stranger said the words the Magdalene but such seemed to be that which he said under his breath.
1. With which interruped this one the musings of the troubled man. The Nubian is of a strength stranger. Is it your wish that I finish the glass you are toying with? 2. The eyes of the rouser of the rabble darkened to the shade of onyx and focused on this scribe. Never said he have I ordered a drink that i did not drain to the dregs! Such is not the way of a man to order that which he cannot finish!
3. Yes! said he then paused taken aback somewhat. With somewhat of suspicion the onyx eyes of the troublemaker fell on your servant. Then with a grin of bitterness his head did nod in acceptance. The man did grab the cup and drain it nor did one drop remain.
4. Much of wisdom do you keepers of taverns acquire said Joshua the Nazarene and much do you impart in secret. Thou art known as Rick and as a man who does not get involved. I will shew ye a secret to repay thee. We shall not sleep but we shall all be changed. Even thou Rick the tavernkeeper! And with that and with not one word more walked the stranger forcefully out of the tavern into the hot Jerusalem night.
5. At this entreated your servant of the Magdalene wherefore of all the wine bibbers and horse hostels in the world she should have walked into mine? Unto his manservant did this scribe convey the order to strike the lyre and sing the Psalm of Time Gone By. The servant Samuel knowing that that psalm was forbidden in the tavern of Rick did hesitate whereupon your servant did forcibly order him to play the heretofore forbidden psalm.
XXII 1. And rigidly did Lucius Quintus Pompeius Sergilius stand and not a thumbs span did he turn as behind him Simon also called Peter slipt out the back and headed unto the pier where his ship awaited.
2. Then did Lucius call forth to his deputy Mercurius and speak thus. Round up ye the usual suspects Mercurius!
3. Neither did your servants hand tremble nor did unmanly tears well as he served himself and Lucius a glass of the Nubian. To manly courage! your scribe suggested. To steadfast faithfulness! Did Lucius respond. Lucius said your servant this is the start think I of a beautiful friendship!
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UFPJ's take on the unity issue
By Marion Delgado at 6:25 PM
United for Peace: UFPJ Fall Mobilization: New Dates and Location
At the UFPJ National Assembly in February, there was tremendous support for organizing a major anti-war demonstration this fall. More specifically, the Assembly agreed that UFPJ should organize a demonstration in New York City on September 10, which would be right before heads of state come to the United Nations for the Millennium+5 Review.
Soon after the Assembly, we learned that there were serious problems with that date. The Central Labor Council of NYC will be holding its annual Labor Day parade on September 10, a parade that usually includes upwards of 100,000 trade union members. It would be both impractical and politically unwise for us to call for some other major action that same day. In addition, a large international coalition of groups that work on global debt and poverty issues have targeted September 10 as a day they will be issuing a call for action. While we can see a clear connection between the hundreds of billions of dollars poured into the war in Iraq and the urgent need to re-order global economic priorities in order to eradicate hunger and poverty, we do not wish in any way to compete with those groups' desire to keep the public spotlight squarely on their issues that weekend.
The decision to change the date and location was not made lightly: these issues were discussed at several steering committee meetings as well as within the administrative committee. The UFPJ National Steering Committee took into account the range of other political priorities set by the National Assembly, and particularly the clearly stated desire for the peace and justice movement to increase the pressure on pro-war politicians in Congress.
Therefore, United for Peace and Justice has decided to organize a weekend of action - Sept. 24 - 26 - in Washington, DC against the U.S. war and occupation in Iraq:
• Saturday, Sept. 24: massive march, rally, and festival
• Sunday, Sept. 25: interfaith religious service; trainings in direct action and grassroots lobbying
• Monday, Sept. 26: lobby day and mass nonviolent direct action and civil disobedience
These three days of actions will send a clear message to the White House and to Congress: this immoral and illegal war must end. Our demands will call for a new direction: Bring the troops home now, leave no bases behind; stop bankrupting our communities with war appropriations, and get military recruiters out of our schools.
The steering committee's discussions about this started at its first in-person meeting over the April 9-10 weekend. In the six weeks since then there have been several steering committee and administrative committee conference calls. On the May 2nd steering committee conference call there was agreement to explore both the Sept. 17th and the Sept. 24th weekends, with the intention of trying to decide on a date as quickly as possible.
As our discussions took place other developments were unfolding, which we want to be sure our member groups are fully informed about. Several weeks ago US Labor Against War (USLAW), a member group of UFPJ with representation on our National Steering Committee, initiated a public process aimed at pulling together UFPJ, ANSWER and the Troops Out Now Coalition (led by the International Action Center) for a meeting to discuss the possibility of a joint demonstration this fall. In light of past problems working with these groups, the UFPJ National Steering Committee expressed serious reservations about such a joint action, but agreed to participate in such a discussion, should USLAW convene it. The UFPJ co-chairs and national coordinator had several conversations with USLAW leadership expressing concerns about their process and relaying the decisions of the steering committee, including our willingness to take part in such a meeting.
In the meantime, while our steering and administrative committees were engaged in discussions about the feasibility of organizing a September 17 or 24 action in D.C., ANSWER, on the morning of May 12, issued a public call for a national march on Washington on Saturday, September. 24. Their call to action has these major demands: Stop the War in Iraq; End Colonial Occupation from Iraq to Palestine to Haiti. Other demands in their call are: Support the Palestinian People's Right of Return; Stop the Threats Against Venezuela, Cuba, Iran & North Korea; U.S. out of the Philippines; Bring all the Troops Home Now; Stop the Racist, Anti-Immigrant and Anti-Labor Offensive at Home, Defend Civil Rights.
In the evening of that same day the leadership of ANSWER sent an email to UFPJ that proposed what they called "a united front between our two coalitions" to jointly organize a Washington, DC demonstration on September 24. It should be noted that the ANSWER memo to UFPJ came well after their call to action had already been released. As has happened in the past, ANSWER publicly announced the political platform of the action and then called for "unity" around their demands. Members of the UFPJ steering committee were troubled about this process and there was further discussion about how to proceed. On May 16th, the Troops Out Now Coalition then issued their letter supporting the ANSWER call, adding their view that, "the Iraqi people have a right to resist occupation by whatever means they choose cannot be censored or excluded."
On the most recent conference call of the UFPJ steering committee (May 18), a decision was made to proceed with our plans as outlined above. This means that while we applaud all efforts and activities to end the war and occupation in Iraq, UFPJ will not join with ANSWER (or the Troops Out Now Coalition) in the planning and organizing of the September 24-26 mobilization in Washington, DC. We will organize a massive march, rally, and festival on September 24; ANSWER may well decide to have a separate event in Washington on that day. We want to be clear. Our call will be an open invitation to groups who want to end the war and bring our troops home now, and who agree with our demands, to join us in the streets. We welcome everyone, including ANSWER and the Troops Out Now Coalition, to organize contingents or feeder marches into our demonstration that day. Our steering committee agreed that should USLAW still decide to convene the meeting described above that UFPJ will participate, but only to discuss logistical concerns for that weekend.
This was not an easy decision. The UFPJ Steering Committee recognizes that there is widespread interest in seeing many antiwar forces working together. But based on our past two and a half years experience, it will not be possible to work with ANSWER or the Troops Out Now Coalition on a joint action this fall. We believe any efforts to work together must begin with developing common, jointly agreed upon political demands and be based upon a style of organizing grounded in mutual respect. We take very seriously the mandate of the UFPJ National Assembly to build the broadest, most diverse anti-war movement possible as a key strategy for bringing an end to this war. Our primary commitment is building this movement, including the fall mobilization, in a way that makes it possible for the largest and widest array of people to come together in opposition to the war, including military families, Iraq war veterans and other veterans, and the labor movement. This commitment has an impact on everything we do: from the nature of the program, to the articulation of our demands, to the ways we do our organizing.
UFPJ is also committed to building a movement culture based on trust, respect, principled action, democratic decision-making, and good-faith communication. Both the national coalition and a number of our regional remember groups have had extremely negative experiences on all these grounds throughout our history of working with ANSWER or the International Action Center. While professing to desire unity, ANSWER and the IAC have repeatedly misrepresented the positions of, attacked, and attempted to isolate and split UFPJ and other antiwar groups, even when we were supposedly in alliances. Now, they once again have announced a political platform and a date for a demonstration without any consultation with us, while on the other hand calling for unity.
Every day the war in Iraq rages on and people are killed and maimed, lives are ruined, and a once sovereign nation is under the military occupation and corporate control of the United States. We must stay focused on our priorities: building the strongest movement possible in order to end this war, bring our troops home and prevent future wars! We ask all UFPJ member groups to join in the effort to ensure the most successful September mobilization possible
So reading between the lines, this year they put the schedule of the union blocs, including some that're part of their coalition, ahead of their tentative schedule.
Then a union group that's part of their coalition tried to work out a big joint demonsttration. While they were still working on it, they were preempted by International Answer and International Action/Troops out (WWP popular front groups). That made them back out. That seems reasonable to me. Moreover, they are explaining that they're not very contrite about it, because ANSWER was acting in its typical, high-handed way to utterly dominate the event before it started, speak for everyone, and control everything that happened.
Let me add several points:
- In the past, UFPJ has sided with ANSWER. When they were both part of a four-coalition action, they agreed not to have any speakers who had trashed any of the four coalitions. Michael Lerner of Tikkun had trashed ANSWER on a number of occasions, so he wasn't a speaker. Some people said UFPJ and its allies had banned him. UFPJ politely responded that that was not the case, it was simply sticking to an agreement. UFPJ seems to me very centered, very sure of their ethical values.
- I dunno about E. Lansing. Perhaps a more united action would get more people there than 2 separate would. Here in Oregon, in Portland, the biggest draws for a huge no war in Iraq march were labor, traditional peace, and environmental groups. ANSWER hasn't got a lot of cachet here. Even where it might draw more than other groups, it does have a lot of baggage. It gives pro-war people a peg to hang a McCarthyite hat on. Therefore, I think it's sensible UFPJ puts labor groups higher up than communist-led groups.
- That said, I will again acknowledge ANSWER's tremendous organizing skills. In that regard they outshine annoying communist-led groups of the past like INCAR (run by the PLP). In fact, that's a big part of the problem. It's easy to get people in all walks of life to say "yeah I don't want the #$#@ war" but it's hard for most of the groups to get people out. ANSWER is very good at that, but admitting that is embarrassing.
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Learn the Meaning of "Unity"
By One Angry Patriot at 1:33 AM
It has been my experience, that in progressive circles, activists tend to pidgeonhole themselves into narrowly focused issues or causes, which leads to tunnel vision. This failure to see the bigger picture can cause them to disagree with others who share common goals, simply because they have different points of view.
Upon learning the reasons why United for Peace and Justice
are planning separate actions on the same day, rather than cooperating on a joint action, I sent the following to United for Peace and Justice
As a member of a UFPJ affiliated group, Greater Lansing Network Against War and Injustice (which doesn't appear to be listed on your site, even though we've paid our dues), I am at a loss to understand your refusal to cooperate with A.N.S.W.E.R. The first word in the name of your organization is "UNITED" but your refusal to work with an organization that has a chapter listed on your site as an affiliated organization (the New Hampshire chapter of A.N.S.W.E.R.) shows an appalling lack of unity.
With the Bush administration's steadfast refusal to heed public opinion, it is more important than ever to unite with as many people as possible, to get our collective voice heard. Petty disagreements over policies and positions should be put aside in the interest of working on policies and positions that we can agree on. Your refusal to work together with an organization that shares common goals runs counter to the spirit of unity expressed in the name "United for Peace and Justice."
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Good news on the AAR Front in Eugene
By Marion Delgado at 12:01 AM
Our local "AAR station" KOPT announced that local host Nancy Stapp is moving to the morning show, replacing Dave Wooten and Liz Kelly. Why is this good news? The answer is complex. Let's start with a guest op-ed in our local alt-weekly, the Eugene Weekly:Talk the Talk: How the right wing is usurping Eugene's progressive radio.
Shortly after Air America came to Eugene, Churchill Communications LLC (owned by the "development firm" Arlie & Co.) added two local shows: The Afternoon Edition, hosted by proud liberal Nancy Stapp (she rocks!), and the AM Edition with Liz Kelly and Dave Wooten, both registered Republicans.
"There have only been two — yes , count them — two liberal presidents in the U.S. in the past 30 years," said the voice on the radio. "Why do you suppose that is? Is it all conspiracy? It's because you guys won't own up to anything, and the American people see that." This was not Rush Limbaugh or Shawn Hannity, it was Eugene's own Dave Wooten, of KOPT 1600's AM Edition on Oregon's "progressive" talk radio.
This was not friendly advice to advance the progressive movement; this was a frustrated 30-year Republican catching some heat from progressive listeners. He does a fairly good job of hiding his contempt for liberals on air, but is a bit less disciplined online. News flash for Dave and fellow R's: After four years of disaster, Dubya refused to "own up" to one mistake during the debates.
Dave certainly has other "progressive" views and ideas. He's suggested dealing with Oregon's public education budget shortfall by cutting teachers and through corporate sponsorship of our schools. What does Dave think about all of us liberals complaining about the Bush administration? "The liberals are doing or have done everything they accuse the conservatives of doing," he said. He also thinks most liberals are "angry and yes, whiny."
During a recent on-air call, I brought up bio-diesel, a plant-based renewable fuel. Neither Liz nor Dave seemed to know a thing about it. After suggesting tax incentives that would motivate people not to consume material goods, Dave's response was, "Why is consumption so bad? What's wrong with buying things that bring me joy?" He obviously doesn't get it. Not thinking about the impact of your daily decisions on the world is what's "so bad." Not taking responsibility for your actions is what's "so bad."
Progressive means knowing about and using alternative fuels and transportation. It means adding teachers to reduce class size, not cutting back on them. Progressives don't favor corporate sponsorship of public schools Progressives know that there are major problems with Americans' consumption habits. Progressives get angry and take a stand when their country is hijacked by religious right-wing war mongers and our credibility around the world has been flushed down the toilet.
This was, I think, in response to Dave Wooten's constant question "how do you define progressive?" as expressed here by Dave in his own words
In an op-ed in our daily, The Register-Guard:
I'm confused. I am told almost daily that a progressive is a person who hates Bush and the war in Iraq. Isn't bringing democracy to a people oppressed by a brutal dictator social change by a government? I am told that a progressive calls for the firing of a government official before an investigation into any wrongdoing comes to a close. I'm told that a progressive applauds those who blow up SUV's in protest of the government.
By the way, there are 3 lies in that last sentence. Take a look at the op-ed above the one I'm linking to.
First no one told Wooten to applaud anyone; this is what people asked Dave:
But why did he get 23 years? He damaged three SUVs, causing $40,000 in damages. No one was injured or even put at risk. How did this crime result in a sentence exceeding that of most murderers?
It's such a good question, Dave decided to lie rather than answer it. He created a ridiculous Sean Hannity-style strawman demand he never received, then whined about that fictitious demand.
Second, Jeff Luers wasn't "blowing up SUV's[sic]" but setting SUVs on fire. Blowing up is more Hannitizing - it suggests "terrorism" - which is the GOP line on environmental, animal rights, and PEACE activism. Dave is spinning like a good GOP top.
Third, Luers wasn't doing it "to protest the government," but the SUV industry. SINGLEHANDEDLY, the SUV industry, by avoiding CAFE standards for passenger vehicles, REVERSED ALL THE POLLUTION GAINS SINCE THE 1970s. SINGLEHANDEDLY. If that fact brings Dave joy, he deserves more than a scolding, and thank God, he seems to be getting it. The SUV industry has contributed significantly to global warming and to energy depletion. SUVs endanger other cars, and for the most part, also their drivers. Etc. As Ted Rall pointed out
, they were designed to resemble threatening animals and intimidate other people. If there's an industry besides the nuclear weapons or the crack cocaine industry that can justifiably be called "evil," it's the SUV industry. And it's not the goddamned GOVERNMENT, Dave. Again, GOP tops like Dave spin everything to make unpleasant corporate actions "the government." And since anarchists are the new communists (Black is the new Red), make it "protest the government."
And look at this from the editor's note after the op-ed:
Editor's Note: Josh Welch e-mailed EW Tuesday morning to tell us that the AM Edition hosts told him it wasn't good for him to bring up their affiliation with the Republican party. He also said that after he made comments criticizing Arlie & Co. and John Musumeci on air, hosts at the station will no longer accept his phone calls and have referred him to the station's general manager.
And let me add, only because I didn't want to run the ENTIRE article on this weblog, I left out some nice things Josh said about the Liz Kelly and Dave Wooten show. I think civility failed to prevent a disconnect from developing here between the morning show, mostly thanks to Dave, and the listeners. I love local shows as much as the next person (I did local talk radio host duty for years in Alaska), but frankly, given GOP dominance of talk radio, the crying need for someone to balance half the show being liberal and the other half conservative does not exist, even here in Eugene. Moron.
For people who want centrist liberalism, there's the Al Franken show, and most days, Randi Rhodes. And Ed Schultz, alas. And Stephanie Miller, long time GOPer whose father ran with Goldwater in 64.
Good riddance, Dave, and I hope you go somewhere where you replace a REPUBLICAN show, in which case you'll be doing some GOOD for once - instead of what I call "Ed Schultz duty" - where a liberal, progressive or non-conservative Democratic show is replaced with Ed Schultz, who's a McCain/Lieberman centrist at best - the result being a net loss of liberal radio time. Ed Schultz is never brought in to replace a conservative show, and that's why I wish he didn't have a show at all. It's not censorship. It's not intolerance. It's the ability to see facts for myself. The same is true in spades for people like Dave.
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The Oceans are Threatened
By Fancy Pants Elitist at 6:51 PM
Phytoplankton is the basis of the ocean's life - it is now threatened.
Back on September 13, 1996 my husband and I took a whale watching trip out of San Francisco beyond the Farallon Islands. It was a beautiful day and we were very fortunate in that we saw 7 great blue whales, 2 or 3 humback whales and thousands of seabirds. More
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How to push back against the GOP TreasonGate Blitz - with the truth
By Marion Delgado at 9:59 PM
The Left Coaster: Treasongate (Part VI): Response to GOP talking points
"Wednesday :: Jul 13, 2005
Treasongate (Part VI): Response to GOP talking points
A number of rebuttals have been provided around the liberal blogosphere to the fakery from the GOP and their media arms about the Valerie Plame expose. Here's a roundup.
[Please feel free to add items in the comments if I missed anything - and distribute far and wide].
TALKING POINT: Valerie Plame (Joseph Wilson's wife) was not covert.
FACT: She was."
If we can't get it together for something THIS big, we deserve to lose. This goes beyond anything else - this is Caligula making his horse a senator. This is Nero fiddling while Rome burns. This the Moscow Trials. This is the Army/McCarthy hearings.
We must all hang together (and by we, i mean Greens, Dems, and moderate Republicans, which is what Joe Wilson mostly is) or we shall assuredly all hang separately.
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By Nick_NYC at 8:37 PM
Vietnam. Who has to say more. The word brings up vivid and disheartening memories for many. The word engenders a feeling of a massive war with vast repercussions. A war with many defeats and slumping feelings to follow. We are healing from this very trauma of the "Vietnam Era" and we are far from recovered.
The state of recovery is marked by a sharp contrast in psyche, behavior and atmosphere. Though some have grouped around their memories, their pain, their losses, their purposes to move on, much of the fabric of american confidence-level is nothing more than a shadow of that which existed before Vietnam.
Sure: scabs have formed. Years have passed--marked by speeches about new eras to be engaged in, new actions to take in the world. We tried to exude confidence, domestic and abroad: BUT!, at the expense of any form of unity that once existed before the Vietnam War. In contrast to post-WWII America where confidence ran parallel to a simpler way of life, the afterlife of Vietnam left America fractured. Fractured under the surface and left for later, to address--for a later time when we had more successes than failures to purport.
Now the course of events has separated those of ideologies of remembrance versus those of "progress". Reagan saved us right? Revitalized America, remember? Clinton, revitalized America further...right? America progressed so so much...right ?! Well what about how this war is similar to Vietnam ...
Yes we have survived so many decades beyond Vietnam, but we are divided ever so much by how we view the past and how to proceed into the future. We agree on proceeding, of course, but how. You can see this above and below, across America. Our sick collective mind is tormented by the way we speak to each other...perpetuating the illness...and furthered by politicians in power: remember how we didn't run?! or.. remember how we failed !!
Now in new conflicts, and a new world stage, we have more inward strife to experience than external and it makes apparent that we haven't healed or even tried. The scabs are itchy and picked at by those who are willing to--or yearning to. Others are more withdrawn and tend to stand behind a person who claims to be a protector of the people, a fighter. Others are eager to address larger social matters facing us but find far fewer numbers than in more revolutionary times. The focus seems to be on strife that is readily exchanged rather than any honest discourse about facts or reality. And it only echos our renewed misgivings of what is different amongst us and those far away in other nations. These sores upon the body of America, lead us further from a phase of recovery into a deeper depressed state of being.
Whatever conflict will face us next on the globe, we are defeated before taking on the fight, and remain defeated as we bicker over which course to take. Those who would want to do us harm or neglect would like to keep us bickering, keep us sickly and divided (insert proverb of ol' here). I personally have found myself characterized by one or more of the above states of defeat, not willing to come to a table, unwilling to work through differences amongst us and I tend to feel sicker for it.
I am going to take this summer to rethink not only how to recover personally, but also formulate a more guided view America, knowing that my recovery may unite me to the real America-at-large, willing to change and able to carry on without pushing conflict for personal gain.
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Em, are you okay
By Marion Delgado at 11:21 PM
One of our own is in Florida, in the path of Dennis.
Here's a post hoping he'll contact #AAR people.
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