July 24, 2009

"We Demand Transparency" Conference - Big Tent Failure

The following is an update to my previous post.

What was the "Real Change and Transparency Conference" has split into two separate and very different anniversary events in NYC.

"Real Change" Conference

"We Demand Transparency" Conference

Sander Hicks had tried to facilitate cooperation between Luke and Les. In the process their previous problems with one another were scrubbed from the internet. You can still find that episode of the movement's history archived here:

Original WeAreChange "Declaration of NY911Truth" - Jamieson v Rudkowki scrubbed

That cooperation appears to have been tenuous and broke down resulting in two separate events. And these events are very different. One appears to be reasonably credible in it's present form and the other does not.

While I have my differences with WAC and Luke, the "Real Change" Conference is BY FAR the more credible of the two events. Those organizing it had asked Bill Deagle to attend. However, it appears that upon discovering that he was a very controversial figure, they took him off the speakers list.

In contrast, the "We Demand Transparency" event has been adding people to their speakers list that are either divisive figures in the movement or who have undermined the movement in one way or another. I nearly jumped out of my chair finding that Cindy Sheehan, Donna Marsh O'Connor and Steve Alten had been added to the list of those participating.

Were Cindy Sheehan to attend, she would be participating in an event with people such as Barrett who defended those such as Webster Tarpley who called her a liar during the Kennebunkport Warning fiasco. And it was Les who allowed Tarpley to speak during the "Ready for Mainstream" conference where he labeled many committed movement figures as cointelpro agents.

Donna Marsh O'Connor, the mother of a 9/11 victim, signed the 2008 Declaration of Standards and Strategies which was largely a response to the "Ready for Mainstream" conference. It would be very unfortunate if anyone used her participation to impugn her judgment or character.

And Steve Alten seems to be more an opportunist than a sincerely committed participant in the movement. For a review of critical opinions of Steve Alten and The Shell Game have a look at this thread.

Barrett, Ranke, and Alten. Three people who I believe have done more harm than good for this movement. And all of this coordinated by Les Jamieson, responsible for the "Ready for Mainstream" conference. And Sheehan, O'Connor, and Sunjata. Three people who deserve a great deal of respect and should not in any way subject themselves to the potentially negative connotations of their participation or the bad press that might result.

How to respond? I would highly recommend two things. First, assuming the lineup remains reputable, that people in NYC attend the WAC event and not the Jamieson event. And second, that people who share any of my concerns make them known to the events organizers and those attending who may not recognize why their participation could have unfortunate consequence for them.

1 comment:

Victronix said...

Thanks. I appreciate that you provide a direction for how people should respond. And that picture is hilarious . . .