Sunday, November 04, 2007


Quote of the Day: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead (US anthropologist, 1901 - 1978)

Today November 7, 2007, VALERIE PLAME is our guest on the Basham and Cornell Radio Show at 8 am Pacific Time on AM 1230 KLAV in Las Vegas (simulcast worldwide on the web.) And we’ll have her for the entire hour.

Valerie Elise Plame Wilson, known as Valerie Plame, is a former United States CIA officer who worked as a classified covert intelligence agent for over twenty years and the wife of 2-time past guest on the show, former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson.

On 14 July 2003 Robert Novak identified "Wilson's wife" publicly as "an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction" named "Valerie Plame" in his syndicated column in The Washington Post. In that column Novak was responding to an "op-ed" entitled "What I Didn't Find in Africa," written by former Ambassador Wilson and published in the New York Times the previous week, on July 6, 2003.

In his op-ed, former Ambassador Wilson states that the George W. Bush administration exaggerated unreliable claims that Iraq intended to purchase uranium yellowcake to support the administration's arguments that Iraq was proliferating weapons of mass destruction so as to justify its preemptive war in Iraq.

Novak's public disclosure of Mrs. Wilson's then-still-classified covert CIA identity as "Valerie Plame" led to a CIA leak grand jury investigation, resulting in the indictment and successful prosecution of Lewis Libby in United States v. Libby for perjury, obstruction of justice, and making false statements to federal investigators, in the Wilsons' civil lawsuit (Plame v. Cheney) against current and former government officials (dismissed on July 19, 2007 in U.S. District Court in a decision appealed the next day), and in continuing related controversy.

The controversy related to the leak of Plame's identity and subsequent legal and political action is sometimes referred to as the Plame Affair. Her autobiography, “Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House”, was published on October 22, 2007.

The Basham and Cornell Show broadcasts weekday mornings at 8 am Pacific (11 a.m. Eastern). All shows are simulcast on the Internet (and archived) and can be listened to at
PENCILS DOWN Screen Actors Guild National Board of Directors Issues Statement in Support of Writers Guild of America...(more below)

Going on strike is a very sad thing, but the producers won't budge on the hated DVD issue and the new media downloads. I have something important to post later today on this. As members of AFTRA and SAG, we stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters of the Writers Guild. Let's pray for a swift resolution.

The National Board of Directors of Screen Actors Guild unanimously approved a statement of support for the Writers Guild of America (WGA) at its plenary meeting in Los Angeles Oct. 27.

Saturday’s resolution, which is included below in full, sounds a resounding note of support for the WGA from the highest elected body of Screen Actors Guild.


WHEREAS the advent of digital production and distribution of content through the Internet, cell phones, and other new media platforms has created a moment of historical urgency for the Guilds that represent creative talent;

WHEREAS our employers sought to change the compensation structures fought for by generations of actors, writers and directors by proposing to pay residuals on a profit-only basis across all media;

WHEREAS our employers have thus far been unwilling to counteroffer the reasonable WGA payment proposal for Internet streaming and instead call such use “promotional” even when whole pictures are shown and new revenue is generated;

WHEREAS our employers persist in equating content downloaded over the Internet with the sale of DVDs despite the complete absence of manufacturing costs and the relatively de minimis cost of digital distribution;

WHEREAS our employers have thus far been unwilling to recognize that the wages, working conditions and residuals provided in our basic contracts should govern work made for any platform, new or old;

WHEREAS our employers have had sufficient experience in new media to make confident, public revenue projections to their shareholders, but nevertheless insist that they must study new media for another three years before they can bargain a residuals formula;

WHEREAS any solution devised for payment of residuals in new media must address the problems of monitoring and enforcement;

WHEREAS our employers have been unwilling to improve the unjust home video residuals formula despite record home video revenues they have reaped since convincing the Guilds over 20 years ago to help grown this market by accepting a discounted residual;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the National Board of Directors of Screen Actors Guild that:

1. The current position of the AMPTP and its members referred to above are unreasonable and would set a dangerous precedent for all creative talent.

2. The Guild supports the WGA and any other Guild or union that seeks to resist the employer positions referred to above and fight for fair compensation and protections for creative talent in the motion picture, television, and new media industries.

Adopted unanimously this 27th day of October 2007 by the National Board of Directors of Screen Actors Guild.