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Indybay Feature

Code Pink Stages Mock Debate at Marines Center

by Daily Cal (reposted)
A local activist group drew a crowd of 50 onlookers yesterday when they staged a mock debate against a military recruiting office in Downtown Berkeley.

Although conservative radio talk show host Melanie Morgan was originally scheduled to participate, she was ultimately replaced by a member of activist group Code Pink pretending to espouse conservative views.

Issues ranged from the congressional race between Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan to the military presence in Berkeley.

"We are the defenders of democracy, the upholders of the Constitution," said Medea Benjamin, co-founder of Code Pink. "If it weren't for people like the people in Berkeley, standing up for what they believe, we'd be living under Hitler."

Without an opposing voice present, members of Code Pink and other activist groups including The World Can't Wait, Middle East Children's Alliance and Veterans for Peace, turned the debate into an anti-war protest.

Marine recruiters did not return calls for comment yesterday.

Morgan, an early-morning conservative talk show host on KSFO, initially agreed to the debate based on certain conditions but ultimately refused, citing Code Pink's ulterior political aims in inviting her to speak.

Her conditions included a neutral moderator and the participation of other military supporters, including a marine recruiter, a veteran and another radio personality. Once Morgan found out that the other invitees, including the military recruiter, had backed out, she said she decided not to participate.

"I wouldn't walk into a situation that was completely stacked for a political view which in my perspective is indefensible," Morgan said.

by Daniel Borgström

When I turned 18 I joined the USMC and served four years. That was decades ago, and back then I had no concept of the damage that imperialism of all ages has done in this world. But now I realize that if I were a young Marine in Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere today, I'd only be serving the interests of Halliburton and other corrupt corporations that drain the wealth out of everywhere, pouring it into the huge salaries of CEOs, while leaving even our streets full of potholes.

by Tax Hater
Sorry to burst your bubble, but the potholes have nothing to do with the salaries of the CEOs. Their pay is dictated by a board of directors, which determine how much the CEO is worth on the free market. Free. Market. You do like Freedom, right? And you guys couldn't have this cute little website had not a corporation invented the computer, so...

Anyhow, as to the potholes. Oil companies make 11 cents of profit for every gallon of gas sold, while on average, station owners earn one cent. Depending on which state you're in, the government takes in between 38 (Tx) and 60 (Cn) cents per gallon. Now, the oil companies must research, dig up the oil, refine it, and transport it to stations. So who seems to be gouging the American public? As for the gvt's use of these funds, it was originally all supposed to be for roads, but it was cannibalized by LBJ's "great society," a boondoggle which provides for people who won't help themselves (I support welfare assistance for those who can't help themselves).
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