KGB event (so to speak)

Mad Hatters’ Review

Edgy & Enlightened Literature, Art & Music in the Age of Dementia

Poetry, Prose & Anything Goes Reading Series

Curated by Publisher/Editor Carol Novack

Inaugural Reading

Friday, April 7th, 7 – 9 pm,

KGB Bar, 85 East 4th Street, N.Y.C.



Paul Beckman
, contributor of three darkly witty flash fictions in Mad Hatters’ Review, Issue 3, received an MFA from Bennington in 1999. Paul lives just over the border in Connecticut. He’s the father of poet Joshua Beckman. Paul has writings in The Connecticut Review, Other Voices, Playboy, Northeast Magazine, 5 Trope, Exquisite Corpse, Del Sol Review, and many other journals. His stories have been published in Germany, New Zealand & Ireland. Paul’s also a four time nominee for a Pushcart Prize.

Amy King, a future Mad Hatter contributor, is the author of the poetry collection, Antidotes for an Alibi (Blazevox Books), a Lambda Book Award finalist, and the chapbook, The People Instruments (Pavement Saw Press Chapbook Award 2002). She currently teaches Creative Writing and English at Nassau Community College and a workshop of her own design, “Making the Urban Poetic,” at Poets’ House in Manhattan. Amy King’s poems have appeared in The Brooklyn Rail, TheMississippi Review, Tarpaulin Sky, Milk Magazine, and No Tell Motel, among others. She is the managing editor for the journal MiPOesias. Please visit for more.

Mark Crispin Miller is a professor of media studies at NYU, where he directs the Project on Media Ownership. A well-known media watchdog and frequent contributor to The Nation, he’s the author of Boxed in: The Culture of TV, The Bush Dyslexicon: Observations on a National Disorder, and, Cruel and Unusual: Bush/Cheney’s New World Order . Most recently, Miller wrote Fooled Again, a call to election reform, in which he argues that it wasn’t moral values that swung the last election — it was theft. Miller wrote and performed in “A Patriot Act,” a chilling indictment of the movement to subvert the US Constitution and replace American democracy with religious values. Mad Hatters’ Review will be publishing a review of Fooled Again in our fifth issue. See Copies for signing and sale will be on hand.

Live Music to be performed by MHR musician/composer Ben Tyree .

A limited edition of signed “Homeland Security” posters created by contributing artist & writer

Marty Duane Ison will be on sale.

For further info, email:

(type READINGS in the subject line )

Edgy & enlightened writers interested in being featured in the series should show up on April 7th bearing a couple of writing samples

Missouri loves chastity

for women only. (Are those clinics free to push Viagra?)

House GOP Bans County Health Clinics From Providing Birth Control
By Roy Temple
Created 03/16/2006

Yesterday, during debate on HB1010, the budget for the Departments of Health and Mental Health, House Republicans voted to ban county health clinics from providing family planning services. [1]

So the GOP has finally come clean that they are opposed to contraception. They used to argue that they opposed family planning because Planned Parenthood played a role. But now the GOP has targeted family planning provided by the county health clinics. Their action is a direct attack on women’s access to traditional family planning services.

The amendment, offered by Rep. Susan Phillips (R-Kansas City) removed “voluntary choice of contraception, including natural family planning” as one of the permissible services that county health clinics could provide with state funding.

A few weeks ago when I wrote about Governor Matt Blunt and Senator Jason Crowell’s opposition to birth control [2], some Fired Up! readers thought I was surely exaggerating. But now the GOP’s real agenda of making family planning more difficult has been laid bare for all to see.

Source URL

You are what you eat


An educational event hosted by Fairway Market & the National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture

Tuesday, 3/21/06, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Fairway Market, Café Steakhouse,
2127 Broadway @ 74th St., 2nd floor, NY, NY

WHO: Paul Weiner of Fairway Market and Liana Hoodes of the National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture are partnering for an event, open to the public, to discuss the meaning of the organic label and the challenges with the National Organic Program. Joining Paul and Liana are: Urvashi Rangan, PHD, Senior Scientist and consumer advocate, Director of project at Consumers Union, publisher of Consumer Reports; Marlo Mittler, Nutritional Consultant, MS RD; Kathie Arnold, Partner and farmer, Twin Oaks Dairy, LLC, Truxton, NY (organic since 1998); Todd Jacobs, Chef and Owner, Tierra Mar and Atlantica restaurants, Westhampton, NY; and other experts.

WHAT: Since October 2002, when the National Organic Program began, organics has become a multi-million dollar industry but not all organic products are created equal. Get tips on how to get the most value for your organic dollar by understanding what organic labels mean on different products. Find out about the latest changes and developments in the government’s National Organic Program and how they affect you. We will discuss why chemically derived ingredients can be used in organic food and how to avoid them; why some dairy animals may have been fed antibiotics and animal byproducts in the year prior to the milk being sold as organic and why voicing concern now is important; and whether organic animals could be raised in confined conditions with little or no outdoor access to pasture, a hot issue that is currently being debated in the public arena. Learn about labels and claims in addition to organic that can add value and are worth a premium price. Join Fairway and the National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture for an organic educational forum to discuss these issues, how your involvement matters, and the continued value of organic agriculture.

WHERE: Fairway Market, Café Steakhouse, 2127 Broadway @ 74th St, NYC, 2nd fl.

WHEN: Tuesday, March 21st, 2006, 9:30am-11:30am

WHY: Fairway intends to create transparency on issues related to the organic industry so consumer expectations of organic labeling and standards are reasonable and realistic. The National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture is committed to educating the public on the importance of a sustainable food and agriculture system that is economically viable, environmentally sound, socially just, and humane.

HOW: Open to the press & public alike. For further information, call Tara McBride, (631) 583-5085 – tel or email tmcbride[at]

Halliburton cares about our troops

Firm Failed to Protect U.S. Troops’ Water
By LARRY MARGASAK, Associated Press Writer

Halliburton Co. failed to protect the water supply it is paid to purify for U.S. soldiers throughout Iraq, in one instance missing contamination that could have caused “mass sickness or death,” an internal company report concluded.

The report, obtained by The Associated Press, said the company failed to assemble and use its own water purification equipment, allowing contaminated water directly from the Euphrates River to be used for washing and laundry at Camp Ar Ramadi in Ramadi, Iraq.

The problems discovered last year at that site – poor training, miscommunication and lax record keeping – occurred at Halliburton’s other operations throughout Iraq, the report said.

Read more.

Claude Allen's evil twin

by Barry Weintraub

I’ve heard a lot of gassy excuses from this White House but today’s New York Times is laying the groundwork for a good one.

Claude Allen was Bush’s top domestic policy advisor. Last month he suddenly resigned. Last week …he was arrested, repeating an emerging pattern for this White House.

Remember David Safavian? He was the director of procurement who resigned from his White House gig on a Friday and got arrested the following Monday. He lied to the FBI about knowing Jack Abramoff. Interestingly, we don’t hear much about Safavian who was involved in a multi-million dollar influence peddling scam but Claude Allen, charged with making off with a whopping five grand …he seems a better story.

The President’s former top domestic policy advisor is charged with nickel and diming Target Stores. Allegedly, he bought items, then took duplicates off the shelves and returned the duplicates using the receipts from the original items. And if there’s any doubt, they’ve got him on videotape. Time to nail that coffin shut? Not so fast.

Today we read in a front page piece in the Times by Ian Urbina and David D. Kirkpatrick with additional reporting by Elisabeth Bumiller, Michael Janeofsky, Robert Pear and John Files (are there enough reporters working this story for you?) that Mr. Allen has an evil twin.

No lie.

They say while Claude was always the goodie two shoes, his brother Floyd was the one who “kept running into bad times.” And what were those bad times? He declared bankruptcy in 2001 and was ordered to pay $6,450 in a civil suit brought against him by a Travel company. The information about Floyd covered two and a half paragraphs in a 25 paragraph piece. The rest of the story read like a promotional bio written by Claude’s defense team.

It’s a bizarre piece, enabled no doubt by the Rovian forces of evil who manage to manipulate the Times with ease on so many stories. (See Scooter Libby, Judith Miller and the outing of Valerie Plame and WMD). What’s interesting is the TImes never comes out and directly alleges that brother Floyd is the guy in the video, But they do plant the seed. Which raises the question: Wouldn’t the authorities in Maryland make sure the guy in the video was Claude and not his brother Floyd before going to all the trouble of arresting him? Maybe in a sentient world…

My real concern now is that the evil twin defense is going to work and we’ll start to see it again and again and again.

That wasn’t Lewis Libby who lied to a Grand Jury. It was his evil twin.

That wasn’t Dick Cheney who shot his friend in the face. That was his evil twin.

That wasn’t Karl Rove who kept changing his story for the prosecutors. That was his evil twin.

And that wasn’t George Bush who started an illegal war, turned a blind eye to rendition and torture, lied about domestic spying and failed to protect our ports because his family likes to do business in Dubai …That was his evil twin.

Go back and look at the relevant news video. Sure it looks like Libby and Rove and Cheney and Bush …. but relax.

It turns out the mess we’re in isn’t their fault at all. Blame their evil twins.

Next, George Bush will argue he’s eligible for another two terms in the White House. Why? Because the first two, in reality …were hijacked by his evil twin.

… and his evil Vice President.

Barry Weintraub, a stand-up comic with a journalism degree, takes his message directly to the people through live appearances and internet blogging. His Headline Schmooze entertains and informs a growing number of email subscribers every business day using real headlines to deliver news and amuse. Barry can be seen tonight March 15 at the Comic Strip on 2nd Avenue between 81 and 82.

Hate mail should be directed to: barry[at]

More on the heroic Stephen Heller

For background, see the Oakland Tribune story below.

—– Original Message —–
From: Michele
Sent: Tuesday, March 14, 2006 4:25 AM
Subject: Article about Stephen Heller’s case

Hello to all of our family, friends and supporters. This is Michele, Stephen’s wife. This is a link to an article about Stephen’s situation in the Oakland Tribune. In case you have trouble with the link, the article is also reprinted below. This article will also soon be on the “Press” page of the Stephen Heller Legal Defense Fund website:

Please feel free to forward this email and/or the links to anyone and everyone.

Thanks again for all of your help and support. We are truly in your debt.

Much love,


E-vote case puts actor in limelight
Diebold software leak makes whistle-blower a folk hero to activists
By Ian Hoffman, STAFF WRITER
Inside Bay Area

One night early in 2004, a few weeks before the presidential primary, a Van Nuys actor making ends meet temping as a word processor listened on headphones as a young lawyer laid out a defense for Diebold Election Systems Inc.’s use of unapproved voting software in Alameda County.

Sitting at a computer terminal on the 45th floor of a Los Angeles skyscraper, Steve Heller transcribed the lawyer’s taped memo suggesting that Diebold could claim the software was a new, “experimental” voting system, even though it had handled two Alameda County elections in 2003.

Heller led a quiet life in the San Fernando Valley with his wife, dog and an occasional supporting role in film, TV or commercials, usually cast as someone’s neighbor or dad, which is what he looks like. He was an “experienced and competent” word processor but no “heavyweight” in the eyes of his night-shift supervisor, who doubted Heller knew his computer commands were recorded.

Read more.

Fundraiser for Jonathan Tasini

Jonathan Tasini is running against Hillary Clinton. This is an important effort, as Sen. Clinton is forever tacking right: all for Bush’s holy war and his absurd, repressive “national security” measures; eager to see Democrats act like a bunch of Holy Joes (while resolutely silent on the danger of election fraud); and now close friends with Rupert Murdoch.

Jonathan, for his part, is a genuine progressive–and, crucially, he gets it on the dire need for electoral reform. Since Hillary is in no danger of defeat by the poor sap who’s been set up by Bush & Co. to run against her, I urge you to support his candidacy, so that we can hear a little truth in New York during this campaign season.

If you’re interested, check this out.


How to donate to Tasini’s campaign

Jeb Bush's Politburo

FL Sec. of State Closes Open Meeting with Ion Sancho, Evicts National Reporters, Calls Police!
Welcome to the First Day of ‘Sunshine Week’ in the State of Florida!

This is just amazing. On the first day of “Sunshine Week” celebrating “open government” in Florida, Jeb’s recent political appointee Sue Cobb tossed out reporters, slammed the door and called the police to remove them from the hallway during what was supposed to have been an open meeting with Leon County Election Supervisor Ion Sancho.

Sancho is the hero who recently revealed that Diebold machines can be hacked and election results flipped without a trace being left behind.

Read more.

Warning from an obscure jurist

If Sandra Day O’Connor were a famous person, this speech surely would have made big news in the United States!

Former top judge says US risks edging near to dictatorship
· Sandra Day O’Connor warns of rightwing attacks
· Lawyers ‘must speak up’ to protect judiciary
Julian Borger in Washington
Monday March 13, 2006
The Guardian

Sandra Day O’Connor, a Republican-appointed judge who retired last month after 24 years on the supreme court, has said the US is in danger of edging towards dictatorship if the party’s rightwingers continue to attack the judiciary.

In a strongly worded speech at Georgetown University, reported by National Public Radio and the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, Ms O’Connor took aim at Republican leaders whose repeated denunciations of the courts for alleged liberal bias could, she said, be contributing to a climate of violence against judges.

Ms O’Connor, nominated by Ronald Reagan as the first woman supreme court justice, declared: “We must be ever-vigilant against those who would strong-arm the judiciary.”

Read more.