Knowledge and Power: “Social Activism and Libraries: An Evening with D. Blair”

February 28, 2011 § Leave a comment

Please join us on March 7th from 6:00-7:30 pm in the Kresge Auditorium for an evening with award-winning Detroit poet, singer-songwriter and educator D. Blair.  Blair will perform poetry and music and share his experiences and perspectives on the progressive nature of public libraries, their importance in the life of an artist, and their ongoing relevance and responsibility to their community in the information age.

Discovering one’s voice is the first step for any activist or artist, whether you are Rosa Parks or the MC5.  How do libraries foster the growth of this empowering knowledge?  How does it connect to the greater community and impel it forward?  This event will offer front-line insights on such questions.

A touring artist with public library cards in over a dozen US cities, Blair will discuss his recent experience performing at the Library of Congress and the Detroit Institute of Arts, in addition to his work teaching poetry and music in Detroit Public Schools, the Hannan House Senior Center, and the YMCA and lecturing at universities, colleges and high schools across the country. For more information on D. Blair, please see

This event is free and open to all.  A Q&A period will follow. This event will be filmed and made available online for those that are not able to attend.

This event is co-sponsored by Progressive Librarians Guild-Wayne State University (PLG) and
Student Organizations in Library and Information Science (SOLIS).  It is part of the PLG Knowledge and Power Lecture Series and SOLIS.

The Knowledge and Power lecture series is designed to investigate the ways that librarians and information professionals function within systems of power. This will also include the investigation of librarianship as a tool of resistance to oppression. The questions this lecture series will address: In what ways does knowledge become power? What affect does power have on the way that knowledge is collected, and disseminated? And how does knowledge support institutions with power? How can librarians, students and information professionals work against these forms of oppression?

This series is designed to include and engage the community and Library/ Information professionals in an open intellectual discourse on social justice issues within the library and community.



Rally Against Education Cuts

February 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

Thursday, March 3 · 4:00pm – 7:00pm
The Center of Gullen Mall, Outside the UGL, Wayne State
One of Rick Snyder’s first acts as governor has been to propose cuts to education and higher taxes for working class. 

To demonstrate our opposition to this attack on the working people of Michigan, we’re calling for a rally in Gullen Mall. We invite all faculty, students, and anyone else opposed to these cuts to attend. The government is going to keep taking from us until we stop them. This is our chance.

As students, we already have a hard time paying for our education. The loans we need to take, and the aid we receive, will likely result in debt after graduation. Now our tuition is potentially being raised, and the jobs we’re going to get are paying less.

Education is a right. It’s hard enough to get through college already, and now it’s becoming more of a privilege for those who can pay than an opportunity for all. Join us on March 3rd, and let WSU and Rick Snyder know, that we will not take a tuition hike or let our educations put us in endless debt.

February PLG Salon-Some articles to get you thinking for tonight

February 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

PLG Salon tonight! Honest John’s at 6 pm. Here are some links to a few articles to get you thinking:

(The topic is “Information Technology and its Functions in Mass Movements”).

Amy Goodman on Al Jazeera English EMPIRE: Social Networks, Social Revolutions

“Internet Kill Switch Bill Gets a Makeover” by Declan McCullagh

“In the Middle East This is not a Facebook Revolution” by Jeffrey Ghannam

“Imperial Feminism, Islamophobia and the Egyptian Revolution” by Nadine Naber

Future City Media Workshops

February 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

The Detroit Digital Justice Coalition presents:
Future City Media Workshops

Offering FREE 22 week workshops in:
Audio / Graphics / Video / Web
…Education / Grassroots organizing / Entrepreneurship


The Future City Media Workshops are 22 week trainings for Detroiters
interested in building a community media economy and an awesome future for
Detroit. The workshops will offer advanced training in audio, video,
graphics, and web design skills. They will also offer training in digital
media education and entrepreneurship. Participants will graduate with the
unique skill sets necessary to train other Detroiters in digital media,
create their own jobs, foster cooperative forms of community wealth
creation, and support media-based community organizing for a better Detroit!

The Detroit Digital Justice Coalition is comprised of people and
organizations in Detroit who believe that communication is a fundamental
human right. We are securing that right through activities that are grounded
in the digital justice principles of: access, participation, common
ownership, and healthy communities.


▲*have some experience in creating digital media.
▲*have some experience in teaching -or- have some small business experience.
▲*are between the ages of 18-80.
▲*are dedicated to creating a community media economy and an awesome future
for Detroit.

Space is limited.
If you have any questions, contact: joe
To apply, visit:


February PLG Salon- Technology and Its Functions in Mass Movements

February 18, 2011 § Leave a comment

Thursday, February 24th. 6 pm

Honest John’s, 488 Selden St

Theme: information technology and its functions in mass movements.

Many people are excited about the role that Facebook and Twitter have done in helping to organize people in recent movements. These technologies have been very helpful! They are also corporately owned, closed systems and, some say, represent a narrowing of the internet and the World Wide Web. What ethical issues surround this? What benefits do they bring? What about community driven alternatives such as Diaspora or

This event is free and open to the public. All are welcome!

Fundraiser for Courage to Resist/ Bradley Manning

February 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

The Organization for a Free Society is hosting this fundraiser concert
for Courage To Resist, who has been taking care of PFC Manning’s
fund. $6 at the door. March 4th 7 pm. Great music from Ann Arbor/Ypsi and Detroit!

Bradley Manning is currently in prison for an indefinite amount of
time for the documents he leaked to WikiLeaks. Along with video
footage (Collateral Murder)of innocent Iraqi Civilians and Journalists
being killed by American soldiers. This fundraiser is to raise
consciousness and legal defense funds for Bradley Manning. Read more
about Bradley Manning’s story at the bottom of the event page.

Along with music there will be a ga…llery of enlarged WikiLeaks
Cables for people to read and review first hand.

This is NOT a B.Y.O.B event, There will be beer/liquor available for a
requested donation for those that are 21+

Event hosted by: Organization for a Free Society

Come join the cause and the fun at the Trumbullplex. Musical guests

– MC Kadence:
Surreal Sci-Fi hip hop that derives the bulk of its influence from
jazz to rock, soul, funk, classical, & electronica”

– United States of Mind:

– Passalacqua:
This is a jazz inspired hip hop group, with a very chill sound, one
called it “free funk hip hop”

– Hans Barbe: A Pianist & Activist – Hans helps runs the Phoenix in
Hazel Park which is a independent collective space that hosts music,
and other events.

– CORNEA: They play the music you may know as NOISE.

– Straight Up: A local hip-hop artist from the Woodbridge area.

More about Bradley Manning’s story:

In late May 2010, Private First Class Bradley Manning, an intelligence
analyst with the US Army in Baghdad, was arrested, suspected of
providing the “Collateral Murder” video to Wikileaks. (Read more about
the Collateral Murder video.)

On June 6, 2010, he was charged with violating the Uniform Code of
Military Justice, including eight criminal offenses and four
noncriminal violations of Army regulations. The full charge sheet is

His arrest was precipitated by an alleged online chat confession to
well-known hacker and journalist Adrian Lamo. The details about and
circumstances around this online chat are unconfirmed and somewhat

The military held Bradley Manning in Camp Arifjan, Kuwait until late
July, 2010, at which time they transferred him to U.S. Marine Corps
Base Quantico in Quantico, Virginia. They have continued to hold him
there in solitary confinement. If convicted Manning could spend 52
years in prison.

On the 3rd of November, 2010 agents from Homeland Security and the
F.B.I. stopped David House, a developer and friend of Bradley Manning,
while on his way back into the United States from a short vacation.
They seized his laptop and other electronic devices, then proceeded to
question him regarding his visits to Manning at Quantico. They did all
of this without a warrant or charges. (See more information here and

On the 15th of December Glen Greenwald published a key article
concerning the inhumane conditions of Bradley Manning’s detention at
Quantico. Articles and interviews followed confirming Greenwald’s
story, including one by David House and a blog entry by Bradley
Manning’s lawyer, David E. Coombs. See more: The Guardian, The Daily
Beast, FireDogLake.

Coming swiftly behind these articles, the office of Manfred Nowak,
United Nations special rapporteur on torture, confirmed that they
received an official complaint about Manning’s situation. Two other
United Nations special rapporteurs also released a joint statement
meant to “recall a number of international legal principles”, point
number three being protection for so-called “whistle blowers” when
they release information about wrongdoing.

At the same time several outlets reported that Bradley Manning’s
prosecutors were attempting to incriminate Julian Assange, co-founder
of Wikileaks, by offering deals to Manning.

On the 23rd of December, 2010, Bradley Manning released a holiday
message through his lawyer.

Now, at the start of the second decade in the second millennium,
Bradley Manning has a growing list of supporters. Included among them
is another famous whistle blower, Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the
Pentagon Papers in 1971. We hope that you will join us as well. See
what you can do to support justice in this historic time.

Read more:

Tom Walker
Organization for a Free Society
Southeast Michigan
(734) 408-1-OFS

Election nomination deadline extended

February 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

The PLG has extended the submission deadline for nominations until the 21st of February. We are currently electing officers for two positions: Treasurer and Webmaster.

How to nominate yourself:
Send a short and pretty statement of intent to Ben Grimshaw: (around 250 words is good). The statement should include something about why you think you are the best person for that position, goals for your involvement in PLG, and what makes you progressive.

University Requirements:
You must be currently enrolled in the SLIS at WSU and be a member of PLG-WSU (you can join now or right after the election if you haven’t already). Additionally you must plan to be enrolled at WSU SLIS for at least one semester beyond the current semester. No previous experience is required!

Here’s a little info about what we expect from you:
* We ask that officers take seriously the mission and purpose of our parent organization (
* All officers are required to participate in at least 2/3 of all official meetings and official activities each semester.

To keep accurate financial records.
To keep records of PLG-WSU membership.
To acquire and complete all forms concerning PLG-WSU monies.

To maintain and update PLG-WSU’s electronic presence.

Please submit all nominations to before 11:59 pm Monday February 21st.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity!

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