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Could Jon Stewart be Channeling Abbie Hoffman?

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"We want everyone to control their own life and to care for one another...We cannot tolerate attitudes, institutions, and machines whose purpose is the destruction of life, the accumulation of profit." [1]

 Just prior to expiring due to a fatal alcohol and Phenobarbital combo, Abbie Hoffman told his sister he had a plan to solve the Israeli Palestinian conflict. That was 1989.

Since the New Year began, Jon Stewart has been the solitary, persistently consistent voice of reason regarding Gaza-Palestine and Israel on television.  On Monday, January 26, 2009, former President Jimmy Carter will be dialoguing with Jon regarding his latest book, We Can Have Peace in the Holy Land: A Plan That Will Work on The Daily Show.

During the '60's the secular Jewish road warrior, Abbie Hoffman, co-founded the Yippies/Youth International Party. Known as the grandmaster of The Groucho Marxist's because of his creative comical anarchy, Abbie pulled off a mass media manipulation when he convinced them to turn out at a demonstration at The Pentagon that promised 50,000 people using psychic energy would levitate The Pentagon, vibrate it and rotate it until it turned orange and the War on Vietnam ended.

In November of 1986 Hoffman was arrested along with fourteen others, for trespassing at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. The charges stemmed from a protest against the Central Intelligence Agency's recruitment on the campus. As University policy limited campus recruitment to law-abiding organizations, Hoffman, acting as his own attorney brought up the issue of the CIA's lawbreaking activities.

The federal district court judge permitted expert witnesses, including a former Attorney General and a former CIA agent who testified about the CIA's illegal Contra war against the Sandinista regime in Nicaragua in violation of the Boland Amendment.

"In three days of testimony, more than a dozen defense witnesses, including Daniel Ellsberg, Ramsey Clark, and former Contra leader Edgar Chamorro, described the CIA's role in more than two decades of covert, illegal and often violent activities. In his closing argument, Hoffman, placed his actions within the best tradition of American civil disobedience. He quoted from Thomas Paine, "the most outspoken and farsighted of the leaders of the American Revolution": "Every age and generation must be as free to act for itself, in all cases, as the ages and generations which preceded it. Man has no property in man; neither has any generation a property in the generations which are to follow."[2]

In 1968 Chicago, Abbie Hoffman addressed the children of the '60's who had planned on spending the night in a city park after their long day of 'lobbying' at the Democratic Convention. Mayor Daly sent word to Abbie that the multitudes were not welcome in his park and the cops were on the way in. Before the Chicago mob with badges descended upon the heads of America's youth, Abbie stood at a microphone and quoted Christ:

"I send you out like little lambs into a wolves den. Remain as harmless as doves and cunning as snakes."

If the doves had consulted Webster's, they would have learned that cunning means one must be skillful, clever, sly, crafty, and do things with skill and ingenuity. To be cunning is to be attractive; cute and cleverly proficient.

The doves lacked cunning and thus got there heads clobbered in and many hippies were radicalized into yippies that day, via baptism by billy-clubs.

"Soon after I had published the pamphlet "Common Sense" [on Feb. 14, 1776] in America, I saw the exceeding probability that a revolution in the system of government would be followed by a revolution in the system of religion... The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."-Tom Paine

The ancient Hebrew prophets used sarcasm and wit to arouse their audience to deep thought and to speak truth to power. And most all of the prophets always ended their message with hope.

"HOPE has two children. The first is ANGER at the way things are. The second is COURAGE to DO SOMETHING about it."-St. Augustine

If we can agree that there is a Divine Mystery of The Universe that we call God for lack of a better word; seems to me, we could agree that God delights in speaking through Jewish men-and women, Christian, Muslim, atheists and others too.



Please sign the Jewish Voice for Peace's Open Letter to President Obama:

Dear President Obama,

Your presidency marks the beginning of a new era in America and in the world. Against all odds and maybe even our own better judgment, you taught us to hope again. Now, the crisis in Gaza demands that you match our hope with real progress. And, just to be clear, those who voted for you aren't the only ones doing the hoping.

We are Americans who voted for you and we are Palestinians and Israelis a world away. We are the women, men, and children who are suffering every single day in Gaza and Israel and we are the people who seek to heal their suffering. We are mothers of soldiers and children of refuseniks.

We are Jews and Muslims, Christians and Atheists. We are united in our call to you today:

Please, support peace for the people of Gaza and Israel.

Press for an end to the blockade of Gaza, so that the people there can have food, medicine, fuel, and basic necessities. That is the only way that they can live, thrive, and rebuild their economy.

Talk to everyone, including Hamas. The late Israeli Foreign Minister Abba Eban said, "You make peace by talking to your enemies." This holds true today. Even a majority of American Jews support negotiations even with Israelis "worst enemies."

Back up talk with actions. This includes monitoring arms smuggling into Gaza and U.S. military aid to Israel. These weapons are killing mostly children and civilians.

And, support the Peace Plan. 57 countries around the world support this plan that provides independence and support for both Israel and Palestine. Peace Plan supporters won't wait for the United States forever – and without the United States, it won't happen. It's that simple.

President Obama, we will continue to hope, and to support your efforts. Please, don't let us down. Please deliver the promise of hope.

To Sign-please and thank you:



1. The New Yippie Book Collective (eds.), Blacklisted News: Secret Histories from Chicago to 1984, page 514. Bleecker Publishing, 1983.







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Eileen Fleming,is a Citizen of CONSCIENCE for US House of Representatives 2012 Founder of Staff Member of, A Feature Correspondent for Producer "30 Minutes with Vanunu" and "13 Minutes with Vanunu" (more...)
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