A Forum for Vigorous Debate, Cornerstone of Democracy

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A FORUM FOR FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND VIGOROUS DEBATE, CORNERSTONES OF DEMOCRACY
[For the journal (guidelines, focus, etc.), go to www.theamericandissident.org ].
Encouraged censorship and self-censorship seem to have become popular in America today. Those who censor others, not just self, tend to favor the term "moderate," as opposed to "censor" and "moderation" to "censorship." But that doesn't change what they do. They still act as Little Caesars or Big Brother protectors of the thin-skinned. Democracy, however, demands a tough populace, not so easily offended. On this blog, and to buck the trend of censorship, banning, and ostracizing, comments are NEVER "moderated." Rarely (almost NEVER) do the targets of these blog entries respond in an effort to defend themselves with cogent counter-argumentation. This blog is testimony to how little academics, poets, critics, newspaper editors, cartoonists, political hacks, cultural council apparatchiks, librarians et al appreciate VIGOROUS DEBATE, cornerstone of democracy. Clearly, far too many of them could likely prosper just fine in places like communist China and Cuba or Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Russia.

More P. Maudit cartoons (and essays) at Global Free Press: http://www.globalfreepress.org

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Kathleen Mahoney

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Below is the email I wrote to Mahoney and others yesterday.  Nobody of course will respond.  In fact, it is highly likely that none of those concerned can even understand it.  Yet the logic is crystal clear in it.  The PC mindset, however, filters out  all intrusively uncomfortable logic.
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From: todslone@hotmail.com
To: kmahoney@clamsnet.org
CC: editor@barnstablepatriot.com; ppronovost@capecodonline.com; sturgislibrary@comcast.net; editor.camelsaloon@gmail.com
Subject: Suppression of Freedom of Expression on Cape Cod
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 2014 09:41:08 -0500

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To Kathleen Mahoney, director, Mashpee Public Library:
Well, here's a complaint on censorship and banning by the Clams Library System of Cape Cod, in particular, Mashpee Public Library.  Hopefully, though doubtfully, you will send it on to
Chris Peterson, Research Assistant, Center for Civic Media, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who asked you via FOIA to divulge any such complaints.   

After I’d put you to the challenge last December, as you recall, you’d responded surprisingly positively that you would subscribe to The American Dissident, a 501c3 nonprofit journal of literature, democracy, and dissidence, and become the first and only library in the Clams Library System to be willing to do so.  Thus, you wasted my time, making me fill out that tax form and mailing out the copy to you.   What were you expecting—PC-bliss in the form of a magazine?  The American Dissident exists to fight those like you who serve as gatekeepers to suppress freedom of expression in America.  That is its prime purpose.  That is what I’d told you in our correspondence!  And so a month later, you sent the copy back and wrote you would not be subscribing, refusing to even include a single reason for your about face.  Why didn’t you use your library stationary?

As you well know, not one library in the entire Clams Library System of Cape Cod will subscribe (only $20).  That was the challenge I’d put before you.  Now, thanks to your rejection, it is still flamingly valid.  In fact, Sturgis Library, my very neighborhood library, as I’d informed you, rejected a free subscription offer and later permanently banned me because of my written criticism.  No warning or possibility of due process was even accorded.  Is that how democracy on Cape Cod operates?  Why don’t you care about that gross insult to the First Amendment committed by one of your close library-director colleagues, Lucy Loomis?   Yarmouth Port Library also refused to accept a free subscription offer!  What are you and your librarian colleagues trying to keep from the eyes of public-library patrons here on Cape Cod?  Why are you and those colleagues acting as gate-keeping censors?  WHY? 

An ugly wave of fascism is rotting away the innards of America today... and you are evidently part of it.  Librarians like you should be ashamed of your gross hypocrisy regarding your very own policy statements, including:  “Libraries should challenge censorship […]” and “provide materials and information presenting all points of view”.   What is it that you and those colleagues do not understand about that statement?  Why have you chosen to counter it, by refusing to provide such materials?  Why do you dislike freedom of expression so much?  Did you learn to scorn it in college?  Have you become so self-satisfied in a cocoon of kudos that you cannot even perceive the hypocrisy?  Give me TRUTH, not happy face!  For you and the Loomis’, it’s the opposite. 

Thanks to you and your ilk, not one citizen on Cape Cod will have the opportunity in his or her local library to examine the caustic criticism, regarding local librarians like you, included in each issue of The American Dissident.  Not one citizen of Cape Cod will likely have the opportunity to read this very letter, which will appear in the next issue of The American Dissident, but not on one library shelf in all of Cape Cod.  The local newspapers won’t even publish it!  Shame on the Cape Cod Times and Barnstable Patriot!  Finally, your rejection, as an incident, is of course quite minor.  BUT the principle involved is really quite major. Whether or not you thought The American Dissident “appropriate,” whatever that might imply in your mindset, is immaterial.  (Evidently, somehow you think Jackass 1, 2, and 3 movies are appropriate)  You should have subscribed to it and thus subscribed to the FIRST AMENDMENT and of course your very own policy statement, which was developed by the American Library Association as the “Library Bill of Rights.”  Hot air?  You bet!  In fact, the ALA’s very own Office of Intellectual Freedom doesn’t give a damn about these concerns either!  Look in the mirror, Kathleen!  What do you see, if not Stalin or Hitler in drag… and with a smile of course? 

Sincerely,

G. Tod Slone, PhD (universite de Nantes, FR),

Founding Editor (1998)

The American Dissident, a 501c3 Nonprofit Journal of Literature, Democracy, and Dissidence

www.theamericandissident.org

wwwtheamericandissidentorg.blogspot.com

todslone@hotmail.com

217 Commerce Rd.

Barnstable, MA 02630

Friday, February 21, 2014

Denise Hill, Casey Hill



Both Denise Hill and Casey Hill, online lit-mag publishers of New Pages are in the censoring business.  Surprise?  Not at all.  Poets and academics tend to favor censorship, for they tend to have fragile, bourgeois egos with a sense of superiority.  The academic chancellors of the haughty Academy of American Poets illustrate the point.  The Hills refuse to list The American Dissident with the other literary journals listed, as if it didn't even exist.  Bravo!  After their flat rejection, I satirized them as censors for the front cover of The American Dissident #19.  Now, will Denise select the above for her lit-mag cover of the week blog inanity?   No.  Why not?  Because she is a poet/academic censor.  Period.  Dare criticize her little literary business, which sucks on the teat of the taxpayer, and be ostracized.  Period.  It is very simple in the world of American poesy.  Still, how difficult for me it is to comprehend the censor's mind.  As editor of The American Dissident, I always publish the harshest criticism of the journal in each and every issue.  What's the big deal?  Well, you'd have to ask the Hill ilk.  Poets should not be in the censorship business.  Period.  

Monday, February 10, 2014

Miciah Gault

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The following email was sent to the deaf ears of Vermont College of Fine Arts library director Jim Nolte and the editors of Hunger Mountain.  As predicted, silence...


From: todslone@hotmail.com
To: miciah.gault@vcfa.edu; robin.behn@vcfa.edu; hungermtn@vcfa.edu
CC: jim.nolte@vcfa.edu
Subject: A P. Maudit cartoon featuring Hunger Mountain Magazine
Date: Mon, 10 Feb 2014 11:56:58 -0500

To Editors Miciah Gault and Robin Behn, Hunger Mountain, Vermont College of Fine Arts:

You are both the subject of a new P. Maudit cartoon just posted on The American Dissident website:  http://wwwtheamericandissidentorg.blogspot.com/2014/02/miciah-gault.html
Please feel free to comment, though if you are typical literary editors, you will not comment because you will likely not be at all passionate believers in vigorous debate, cornerstone of democracy.  Here are some questions for you: 

1. Why doesn’t VCFA have a student newspaper?

2. Why does your library director, Gary Nolte, not believe in the spirit of openness and inclusivity, as stipulated in the ALA’s Library Bill of Rights:  “Libraries should challenge censorship […]” and “should provide materials and information presenting all points of view”?

3. Why do both of you not question and challenge dubious distinctions like the one you boast about on your website (i.e., being declared “notable” by Best American Essays series)?  Why do you not wonder who the faceless judges might be and what their prejudices might be?  How did your professors fail you and so many other just-say-ah-and-open-wide poets and writers in that respect?  Is there something intrinsically wrong with the MFA writers program?

4.  Why does VCFA seem closed to dissidence? 

5.  Are these very questions taboo at VCFA? 

SILENCE will be your likely response.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Jason Kolnos

NB: The Cape Cod Times is the local paper where I live.  It refused to even report that I'd been permanently trespassed from the local library (Sturgis Library) without warning or due process for simply criticizing policy hypocrisy.  Apparently, editor Paul Pronovost is unaware that vigorous debate IS the cornerstone of democracy.