WBAI-FM Upcoming Program
Arts Express

Thu, Aug 9, 2018   2:00 PM



** "My childhood imprisonment has been the defining experience of my life - I do have my childhood memory of the barbed wire fence, and the tall sentry towers with machine guns pointed at us."

'Facing' Racism: George Takei Phones In. Takei, most famously known as Hikaru Sulu of the USS Enterprise on Star Trek, is on the line to the show to revisit growing up in a WW II Japanese American internment camp. Simply for what the US goverment deemed literally one's 'face' - what one looks like - as the designated wartime enemy.

And, implications for child immigrant prisons today. Along with memories as well, of the young interned men recruited as enormously high casualty rate cannon fodder, in the segregated Japanese American battalion sent to fight on the front lines in Europe.


And during this week marking the 73rd anniversary of the US horrific atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we'll hear from Canadian author Jacques Pauwels about his book, The Myth Of The Good War: America In The Second World War. Shedding light on what may have been going down back then, as the real reason for the US historical inauguration of genocidal WMDs they dropped on civilians in Japan. And what it has to do with future US aggression and jumpstarting the Cold War, China, Indonesia, North Korea, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

** "We're going to release the film on the one year anniversary of Charlottesville, and it's ugly, ugly, ugly blemish on the United States of America. This film is a wakeup call, and I know in my heart, I don't care what the critics say or anybody else - We are on the right side of history."

BlacKkKlansman: Spike Lee speaks about his passion for the project to the press at the Cannes Film Festival, where he won the prestigious Grand Prix Award. Then BlacKkKlansman star Craig muMs Grant weighs in.

** "What got me on board is Spike Lee. When Spike calls, I come a-running - that whole idea of the Klan being infiltrated by a black man, it's like a punch in the face of racism, it's a fist in the air."

Multi-talented actor, playwright, Bronx based rapper and spoken word poet Craig muMs Grant, who has performed at the The Nuyorican Poets Cafe and on Slam Nation and Def Poetry Jam, phones in - delving into his role as Jabbo the bartender in this based on a true story socio-political satire. Known for his starring role as Arnold 'Poet' Jackson in the television series Oz, muMs, who has also been part of the Spike Lee productions Bamboozled and She's Gotta Have It, explains as well the mystery behind his name.

Active Measures Movie Review

The time is long overdue to attach advisory warning labels to infomercials passing themselves off as documentaries, and Active Measures is no exception, to say the least. Basically a pot calling the kettle black bashing of everything Trump - when the Democrats have been up to the same dirty dealings politically and economically here and around the world like since forever - is akin to say, one mass murderer indignantly raising moral issues against another.

Active Measures novice documentary filmmaker Jack Bryan - whose only other doc credit has been for a self-described "life and death of New York's most notorious, dirty, and dangerous dive bar" - avidly goes for the jugular carnival barker style of 'persuasive' moviemaking. In other words, more intent on assaulting and mentally overwhelming - and shutting down viewer brains - with a shock and awe, style-over-substance overload of his supporting claims. While firing an unrelenting, two hour volley of flash quotes and like-minded spouting neo-liberal talking heads, rather than convincing through logic. Or god forbid, presenting anyone at all from the other side in a debate where your might try to effectively challenge their views - instead of this one-side-to-every-story mode of filmmaking.

Blaming Russia for election meddling in Active Measures, whether actually true or false aside, is ironically a US invention around the world. And when meddling won't do the trick, murdering or botched CIA assassinations of political leaders across Latin America for starters to dominate other countries politically and economically - has done the trick.

And what about the film revisiting the massive theft of the people's coffers back in the 1990's, and into the pockets of the new oligarchy class following their coup against the Soviet Union - who orchestrated that coup? Well, the one thing the current US president isn't blamed for in this film. Rather, it was the sitting president at the time - and significant other of giggling Active Measures star Hilary - who may have either collaborated here in a new presidential bid, or for an Oscar - namley Bill Clinton, in proudly bragging election meddling cahoots back then with aspirinig drunk head of state Boris Yeltsin.

And with the elephant-in-the-room total absense of anything criminal the US may have done ever, seemingly indictable itself - while Russia is blamed here for everything gone wrong in the world and a preference for hacking over military invasion - the ironic silence is deafening. Namely,  that "the US has killed more than 20 million people in 37 victim nations since World War II," according to the Centre for Research on Globalization - leaving Nazi Germany far behind in that competition.

And Trump colluding with the new Russian oligarchy class to money launder their ill gotten gain from the Soviet people's coffers into his hotel and casino projects, as charged in this film? This country, Dems and Republicans alike invented that global activity as well, on behalf of US corporations and filthy rich nations like Saudi Arabia. And a chief mastermind of that activity for some time now - that star of this documentary once again and her teflon Foundation - Hillary, still perpetually giggling throughout the film as she did when cheering on the CIA orchestrated assassination of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. And sending that country under that Dem presidency into its current chaos - the better to exploit Libya economically by US corporations.

Which ultimately begs the question of such suspect documentaries - who funded your movie. For starters, check out the disclaimer-free list of rogues gallery Democratic think tanks propping up this shameless exercise in propaganda information warfare. Along with the best line in the movie when one smirking talking head is asked for proof: "Everything I know that's interesting, I can't tell you."

Prairie Miller

Arts Express: Dare To Be Different Radio