Library Juice 6:1, January 2, 2003


  1. Advertisers trying to make a buck at our expense - a CALIX thread
  2. International Leads needs a new editor
  3. Friends of the Reference Center for Marxist Studies
  4. POETRY MATTERS! On the Media Persecution of Amiri Baraka
  5. Mitch Freedman responds to ALA-basher (Palestine resolution-related)
  6. Links
  7. Amusing searches

Quote for the week:

"You can never solve a problem on the level on which it was created."
-Albert Einstein

Homepage of the week: Ron Day


1. Advertisers trying to make a buck at our expense - a CALIX thread

(CALIX is a listserv for California librarians)

A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 11:09:07 -0800
From: breynolds[at]
To: calix[at]
Cc: lists[at]

Dear Friends, Page 15 of the December 2002 issue of the California Bar
Journal, includes a full-page, color advertisement by SBC/Pacific Bell for
SBC Broadband Internet Services. The text reads as follows: "The judge
doesn't care how many partners are in your firm. Or how many hours you
bill. Or where you build your case. To prevail, you must outperform the
guy across the aisle. And we can help you start by out-preparing him.
We're SBC Pacific Bell. With Broadband Internet you can research from
anywhere with the security of Virtual Private Networks, transfer piles of
depositions, even conduct interviews and consultations via
videoconferencing. Equip your business [at] or

I thought librarians (maybe, especially, law librarians) might be
interested in seeing this ad and wonder if it's published elsewhere. About
six months ago I was driving through San José, California, and saw a huge
billboard, with almost no text, just some background color. In the bottom
right-hand corner of the billboard was the name and logo of a large
hardware store chain. In large letters across the top of the billboard
were these words: "Where do you think plumbers go when they have a
question? The Library?"

What are your thoughts? Thanks, Brian Reynolds

Re: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 11:46:03 -0800
From: Rory Litwin
To: calix[at]

What to do about the image of the Library as the antiquated, musty, quiet,
deserted precursor to the Internet age? It's a problem that's talked about
a lot, and has led to discussions about marketing efforts to "let the
public know what we're really about," like ALA's "@ your library"
campaign. "Letting the public know what libraries are really about"
usually means letting the public know that libraries are no longer just
about books; now we have lots of computers, and databases that are superior
to what you can get on the free web, etc. But part of the strategy has
also been to begin treating our users as consumers rather than as a
thinking public with an interest in the governance of society, so that we
can compete with commercial enterprises that seem so much better at
grabbing the consuming public's attention; this is the strategy behind
calling our users "customers." In trying to shed the image of an
antiquated, forbidding, 19th-century book-jail we are unfortunately also
shedding, I believe, the non-consumerist, public-sphere orientation of the
library in an effort to compete. To the extent that we do this, we lose
the primary element of difference that a) makes it worthwhile to try to
preserve libraries and b) could be our best selling point in a society
overloaded with advertising and hype.

Rory Litwin

FW: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 11:51:12 -0800
From: "Karen G. Schneider" <kgs[at]>
To: <cbj[at]>

Editor, California Bar Journal:

This advertisement is insulting and uninformed. Law libraries rarely
even use the Dewey Decimal system (generally used in public libraries to
organize books on shelves--and books are only one service provided by
libraries). Furthermore, librarians don't take out ads insulting
lawyers or pointing out that quite a bit of good legal information is
available for free over the Web. Finally, quite often the high-end
resources made available to lawyers were selected, evaluated, and
purchased by librarians.

Many, many librarians have helped lawyers prepare for legal cases, and
on a higher plane, the library profession and the legal profession have
worked together on many important issues, from the Children's Internet
Protection Act to today's challenges to repeal major sections of the
disturbingly heinous USA PATRIOT Act.

As the shadows of prior restraint and unrestricted surveillance loom
over our population, we do not need our mutual efforts to preserve and
protect the delicate ecology of intellectual freedom undermined by cheap

A full-page, color apology is in order.

Karen G. Schneider
(And expert witness, Mainstream Loudoun v. Bd of Trustees of the Loudoun
County Library)

Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 14:34:43 -0800
From: Dave Tyckoson
To: calix[at]

I don't usually respond to these things, but the interesting conversation
on Calix has inspired me to contribute a few thoughts.

First, a confession. I am a librarian AND a Broadband subscriber.
However, I don't think that I am putting myself out of business by doing
so. In fact, my use of my Broadband connection is almost entirely
recreational, while the people that I help at my library are primarily
working on coursework, research, or personal information needs. While
both are involved with information, the two institutions, Pacific Bell and
the Library, serve entirely different purposes. Bell serves as the means
of communication, whereas the Library serves as the house of the content.
The two complement each other -- they do not replace each other. In fact,
there may be libraries that use Pacific Bell Broadband as their primary
link to the Internet.

Like much of advertising, this piece is looking for a hook that will make
people remember it. Whether that hook has anything to do with reality is
besides the point -- it is the fact that you will remember it that is
important to the advertiser. "Where's the beef?", "Change back from your
dollar", "Don't leave home without it", "Dude, you're gettin' a Dell",
"The happiest place on earth", "We try harder", "Finger lickin' good",
"Can you hear me now", "Just do it", etc. are all slogans that we (or at
least people of my age, given the first two examples) remember. None are
based in fact and some are totally wrong (although I did get a Dell last
year), but they stick in the public's mind.

Which is why I don't think that it is bad at all for libraries to be
included in one of these slogans. Maybe any publicity IS good publicity,
but the fact that they think of libraries at all indicates that libraries
remain a significant enough part of our culture to be included. This
reminds me of a survey that was done when I was living in Iowa in the
mid-1980s. The governor was trying to promote tourism in the state and
did a poll of New Yorkers to determine what their perception of the state
was like. The good news was that New Yorkers did not have a negative
perception of Iowa at all. The bad news was that they did not have a
positive perception either. The survey found that New Yorkers had no
perception of Iowa at all -- they just never thought about Iowa. The good
news for libraries is that people do think about us. We are on the map of
contemporary culture.

What I find interesting about this ad is that it is aimed at lawyers. I
will refrain from any mention of the public's perception of lawyers, but
will only comment that the ad must be aimed at incompetent lawyers. As I
mentioned earlier, Broadband is a communications tool and provides no
legal information that could not be found with any other web service.
Good lawyers or law firms subscribe to Lexis or Westlaw. Broadband will
not magically bring that information to their desktops. Nor will it
significantly speed up the service for those that do have Lexis or
Westlaw. And, of course, legal information uses its own system of
citation, such as West's key numbers, NOT the Dewey Decimal System.

I don't think that we have anything to worry or complain about. They are
thinking about us, which is good. They are thinking of us in the same
breath as high speed Internet access, which is also good. Other
advertising firms have used librarian images for a variety of products
during the past year, from Honda automobilles to a certain sex-related
item that caused a minor stir on some listservs. All of this means that
we are not dead yet.

The ad also gives all of us librarians a very useful tool. The next time
that you need a lawyer, ask if they have Broadband. If they respond yes
and go on and on about how it is helping them, find another lawyer.

Dave Tyckoson

Re: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 15:00:56 -0500
From: "Sue Kamm"<suekamm[at]>
To: calix[at]

breynolds[at] wrote:

Dear Friends, Page 15 of the December 2002 issue of the
California Bar
Journal, includes a full-page, color advertisement by....

**Maybe we should tell SBC that people are switching to LC
classification <g,d,&rlh>

Would a lighthearted letter from the CLA president and
directed to whoever's running whatever this merged
organization is called this week do the trick?

(I tried to determine whether that institution has a library
by looking at the directory for the San Francisco Bay Area
chapter of SLA. If there is indeed a library at SBC/Pac Bell,
whoever works there doesn't seem to have an office or chair
a committee.)

I know Jacqueline Simintius (sp?) monitors this. Perhaps
she can be our "mole" on this issue.

Your friendly CyberGoddess and ALA Councilor-at-large,
Sue Kamm
Truest of the Blue, Los Angeles Dodgers Think Blue Week 2000
Visit my home page:
email: suekamm[at]
When you absolutely, positively HAVE to know, ASK A LIBRARIAN!

Posting advocating the use of the word "customer" instead of "patron"
deleted at the request of the author.

RE: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 12:31:22 -0800
From: Rory Litwin
To: calix[at]

There must be some other word we can use. The word "customer" doesn't only
communicate the value of "good customer service" (which really just means
good service). It also communicates a consumerist orientation. I would
agree that there is something about consumerism that's a signature of the
times. However, I can't accept that the only way to be "with it" is to
imitate commercial retailers of one kind or another. The problem with
doing that is that it imports consumerist values into the institution of
libraries, values that are contrary to the values that underlay the public
library as it was founded as a modern institution: free inquiry,
participation in democracy, the public sphere. There are those who would
say that you're behind the times if you believe in the public sphere, too.

Trying to make this a debate about giving good "customer service" versus
not giving good "customer service" is avoiding the point. Of course our
users want to be treated well and of course we should treat them well and
cater to their needs. But we should provide something that feels more like
an opportunity to participate in society than a shopping experience.

Rory Litwin

Re: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 16:36:52 -0500
From: "Sue Kamm"<suekamm[at]>
To: CALIX <calix[at]>

I frankly never liked "patron" or "customer" to designate those who use
libraries. (I once told a United Airlines employee who called me a "customer"
that we knew bad times were upon us when the airlines start referring to
passengers as "customers>" But I digress.)

If we are true professionals, then I think we should refer to people who come
to the library as "clients," or "library users." Bag "patron" and "customer."

Your friendly CyberGoddess and ALA Councilor-at-large,
Sue Kamm

Re: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 2002 14:24:47 -0800
From: Rory Litwin <rlitwin[at]>
To: CALIX <calix[at]>

Thanks, my sentiments exactly. But even libraries that don't call their
users "customers" have become consumerist in an effort to spruce up their
image and compete, and I think they are losing a bit of their primary
qualities in the process, which was the point of my original post.


Re: A Death Sentence for the Dewey Decimal System?
Date: Sat, 21 Dec 2002 01:09:27 -0800
From: "Bruce Jensen" <flaco[at]>
To: <calix[at]>


Such a charming slogan. Sentencing a library classification system to
death: who can resist a sophisticated, high-concept idea like that? I the
consumer, customer, or compliant patron--call me what you will--simply melt
and reach for my checkbook whenever I see marketing that invokes capital
punishment. This ad campaign has real legs; the next spot could replace the
lawyers with medical researchers:


After that, the whimsical ad blitz could target the industrial/manufacturing


> were these words: "Where do you think plumbers go when they have a
> question? The Library?"

This flawed slogan, on the other hand, could use some tweaking in a focus
group setting. A pack of 'plumbers' going on an information-gathering spree
conjures up memories of the Nixon administration and the Watergate Hotel,
for those of us in a particular demographic. But since the ad is premised
on the hip notion that people who work with their hands are, by definition,
primitives with no use for libraries, this campaign too has potential to
reach far beyond the promotion of the hardware store that spawned it. All
that's needed are subtle twists on the impeccable logic of the original ad.

Laundromat: "Where do you think auto mechanics go when their overalls get
all greasy? The library?"

Gas station: "Where do you think truck drivers go when their fuel gauge is
on 'E'? The library?"

Chiropractic clinic: "Where do you think bricklayers go when they get a
herniated disk? The library?"

Mortuary: "Where do you think migrant farm laborers go when years of
pesticide exposure, poor living conditions, and inadequate medical care lead
to an early death? The library?"

That last one borrows that cute mortality motif from the other campaign.

> Seems like some folks enjoy (or, at least see a profit in) using libraries
> as a punching-bag. What are your thoughts?

Punch back.

Bruce Jensen flaco[at]
S O L : Spanish in Our Libraries

2. International Leads needs a new editor

IRRT is seeking candidates with editorial experience for the important
volunteer position of International Leads Editor. If you are interested,
please contact Barbara Kile, Chair, IRRT Publications Subcommittee at Rice
University, Fondren Library, Woodson Research Center MS-215, PO Box 1892,
Houston, TX 77251-1892 or email at kilebar[at]rice. edu. The appointment will
be made at the ALA Annual Conference in Toronto in June 2003. The new
editor's two-year term starts in January 2004. For further information see
the IRRT website at .

(IRRT is the International Relations Round Table.)


3. Friends of the Reference Center for Marxist Studies

For immediate release, December 18, 2002

Rory Litwin

New on the server:

Friends of the Reference Center for Marxist Studies

The Friends of the Reference Center for Marxist Studies is an organization
now being formed to assist the radical research library in NYC in various
ways. Presently, the focus of the organization, and its website, is to
support the RCMS in its efforts to gain back the papers of the Communist
Party of the United States, of which it is the designated archive. The
papers were transfered to the Soviet Union for safekeeping during the
McCarthy era, and were misappropriated by the Russians after the collapse of
Soviet Communism, and subsequently sold to the Library of Congress and the
publishing company IDC, which is offering microfilm copies for $34,000 a pop.

Visit the website of the Friends of the RCMS for background information on
this conflict. The site also provides an opportunity to sign a petition and
contact us with your interest. We are working on a structure for accepting
donations for membership.

The Friends of the Reference Center for Marxist Studies is at


4. POETRY MATTERS! On the Media Persecution of Amiri Baraka

Poetry Festivals don't usually trigger hate campaigns or Red Scares, but
this year's Geraldine Dodge Poetry Festival at Waterloo Village in
Stanhope, New Jersey, proved to be different. There, on September 19th,
Amiri Baraka read his poem "Somebody Blew Up America." The applause was
thunderous, but some people apparently didn't like it, for almost
immediately the poet was singled out for an incredible barrage of
vilification by Murdoch's Fox News, the New York Times, the National
Review, and scores-by now probably many hundreds-of bigoted,
neoconservative, white-supremacist talk-shows and periodicals. Leading the
assault on the poet is the so-called Anti-Defamation League (ADL), a
powerful right-wing political organization notor-ious for its virulent
opposition to Affirmative Action and for its routine use of character
assassination against its critics.

It so happens that Baraka wrote "Somebody Blew Up America" in
September/October 2001, in the weeks following the tragedy known to all as
"9-11." The 226-line poem was promptly posted on the Internet, copied onto
many websites, and further publicized by the poet at numerous
well-attended readings all over the U.S. and in many other countries. It
quickly became one of the most widely circulated of his works. No attempt
was made to conceal the fact that the poem was, in Baraka's own words, "an
attack on Imper-ialism, National Oppression, Monopoly Capitalism, Racism,
Anti-Semitism," and that it was meant to "probe and disturb." Not until
the Dodge Poetry Festival, however, did anyone object to it.

What provoked the sudden media war on Amiri Baraka in September 2002?
Assuredly it was not merely a difference of opinion regarding the art of
poetry. In truth, despite the hue and cry, the poem itself is not the
central issue here. In any event, the principal charge alleged against the
poem (that it is "anti-Semitic") cannot withstand a moment's critical
examination. Indeed, with its salute to the memory of such revered Jewish
revolutionists as Rosa Luxemburg, and the questions it raises about U.S.
capitalism's little-known complicity in the Holocaust, Baraka's poem is
explicitly against anti-Semitism and all racism. If the ADL's hollow
charge, repeated ad nauseam by the media, had even the slightest
substance, how are we to account for the fact that it was completely
unnoticed by the hundreds of thousands who had read or heard the poem
during the preceding year? (The ADL, of course, construes any and all
criticism of the Israeli government-even the merest mention of its long
support of South African Apartheid, for example-as "anti-Semitic.")

No less spurious is the ADL's puerile argument that Baraka's poem is
helping to foment "anti-American xenophobia," but this charge-bristling
with sinister insinuations-does bring us closer to the real issues at
stake in the media "police action" against the poet. For what the ADL,
neoconservatives and repentant ex-New-Leftists really hate about Baraka is
that he is a sharp critic of this country's anti-democratic institutions,
and an activist who has time and again protested the U.S. government's
repressive role in foreign and domestic affairs. Worse yet, from the point
of view of the white ruling class and the politicians who do its bidding,
Baraka is also an outspoken revolutionary.

Clearly, then, the real target of the ADL's ongoing defamation of the
author of "Somebody Blew Up America" is not that particular poem, or any
other poem, but the poet himself, his revolutionary courage and audacity,
and above all his ability to articulate the anxieties and yearnings of
those "furthest down" in humankind's long hard struggle against inequality
and tyranny.

The question, "Why did the assault on the poet start as late as September
2002?" is easily answered: Because in August, a few weeks before the Dodge
Poetry Festival, Amiri Baraka became the poet laureate of the State of New
Jersey. An honorary title with a small stipend, this was far from a
position of power, but for the state's corrupt "business-as-usual"
Establishment, it was evidently way too much.

And so Baraka's poem-or rather, the distorted, out-of-context fragments
quoted by his critics in the press and on TV-was made a pretext for racial
and political persecution by that arch-enemy of all poetry, solidarity,
and freedom: the white power structure.

The ADL and other bigots are demanding that Baraka be removed as poet
laureate. Cravenly submitting to white-supremacist pressure-groups, New
Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey has formally asked the poet not only to
resign as laureate, but also to apologize for his poem! Baraka has

In the current U.S. political climate: a climate of domination, fear, and
insipid conformism; increasing government surveillance and curtailing of
civil rights and liberties; persecution of immi-grants, radicals, and
organized labor; massive militarization and flag-waving war hysteria, all
promoted by an unelected President and a billionaire-owned media-the
assault on Amiri Baraka is a matter of the greatest concern to all who
care about human free-dom, the right to dream, and the right to speak out.

This attack on a poet is an attack on all poets, all poetry, and all free
speech. The persecution of Baraka is about stifling poetry, suppressing
criticism, silencing voices of dissent. It is about censor-ship and
coercion; the imposition of conformity and misery; the denial of freedom.

We say:

Hands Off Amiri Baraka!

Long live the unfettered imagination!

An injury to One is an injury to All!


The preceding statement on the media persecution of Amiri Baraka may be
reissued with signatures, including the co-signatures of poets, writers,
artists, scholars, and activists who are not surrealists but are in
agreement with the statement.

If you want your signature to be included, and/or if you know of others who
may wish to co-sign, please e-mail us at info[at]

Among the signators are:

Gale Ahrens
Dennis Brutus
Paul Buhle
John Bracey
Ronnie Burk
Diane di Prima
Patricia Eakins
Nicole Henares Garland
Paul Garon
Mary Ann Hansen
Noel Ignatiev
Marie Kazalia
Robin D. G. Kelley
Don LaCoss
Clive Matson
David Meltzer
David R. Roediger
Franklin Rosemont
Penelope Rosemont
Mark Rosenzweig
Ron Sakolsky


5. Mitch Freedman responds to ALA-basher (Palestine resolution-related)

[ALACOUN:8546] [Fwd: Re: ALA resolutions against Israel]
Date: Thu, 26 Dec 2002 18:35:26 -0500
From: "Maurice J. (Mitch) Freedman" <freedman[at]>
To: ALA Council List <alacoun[at]>
Reply to: freedman[at]

Dear Colleagues,

I have eliminated the identity of the person who sent me this message.

I felt that the importance of the issue of ALA's resolution on Palesinian
libraries, and that the need for ALA's position, and for that matter,
SRRT's position, be accurately stated, you should see the following

Based on the number of messages I already have received, it is likely that
you will be getting some messages, too, and I surely will be getting many

Warmest regards, and best wishes for a Happy New Year.

Maurice J. (Mitch) Freedman, MLS, PhD
President of the American Library Association; freedman[at]

Director, Westchester (NY) Library System
410 Saw Mill River Road - Suite 1000
Ardsley, NY 10502-2605
Voice: (914) 231-3223; fax: (914) 674-4193

All matters concerning the U*N*A*B*A*S*H*E*D Librarian,
Should be sent to <editor[at]>
"I'll be seeing you, in all the old familiar places..."

Dear xxxxxxxxxxxxx,

Thank you for taking the time to write to me and share your concerns about
the American Library Association.

The article you cite as the basis for the expression of your concerns was
by someone whose facts were not correct and who chose to hide his or her
identity behind an anonymous e-mail service--at least that was the origin
of the e-mail message I received from him or her.

As quoted in the e-mail as well as in the citation you give, , "N. Leonard
Tolkan is the pseudonym of a veteran librarian who, for obvious reasons,
chooses to remain anonymous."

His or her reasons are not obvious to me, and I am disappointed that he or
she hides behind anonymity.

ALA's resolution is concerned with the destruction of Palestinian
libraries, just as previous ALA resolutions on Bosnia, Yerevan, etc. have
been concerned with the destruction of libraries in other countries, some
occasioned by military actions, others as a result of natural disasters.

As ALA President, and as have many other ALA officials who have addressed
concerns such as yours, I have consistently indicated that ALA has no
position on the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. ALA is
concerned with the destruction of libraries--in this case, Palestinian
libraries. The entire ALA resolution is quoted at the end of this
message, and can be found on the ALA web site,

The Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT) resolution, to which Mr. or
Ms. "Tolkan" makes reference, was rejected by the ALA Council and does not
represent the policy of the ALA.

Since Mr. or Ms. "Tolkan" confuses the two resolutions and then makes a
rash of allegations against ALA based in large part on his or her
interpretation of the SRRT resolution, I thought that it would be good to
quote from the preface to the SRRT resolution,

"[This] resolution was adopted by the elected representatives of the Social
Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT) on June 15, 2002. SRRT is a body
within the American Library Association but does not and should not be
taken to speak for the Association as a whole. In this resolution SRRT
speaks only on its own behalf."

The complete SRRT resolution on the destruction of Palestinian libraries
found at,

If you would like to to discuss SRRT's resolution, I suggest you contact
Rory Litwin, SRRT Action Council Coordinator. His e-mail address is:

I am very much aware of the strong feelings and passions that the conflict
between Israel and the Palestinians has generated. It is unfortunate that
the ALA Council's concern with the destruction of Palestinian libraries
and cultural institutions is viewed as an endorsement of terrorism and the
killing of Israeli civilians, and, overall, as ALA's condemnation of the
nation of Israel. ALA makes no such endorsement or condemnation. Any
perception to the contrary is in the eye of the beholder, not in the ALA

Following is the resolution, taken from the official ALA website, that was
passed by the ALA Council regarding Palestinian libraries.

Resolution on the Destruction of Palestinian Libraries, Archives, and Other
Cultural Institutions
WHEREAS, In the course of recent events in the Middle East, Palestinian
computers, photocopiers, books, audio recordings, video recordings, data,
institutional archives and records, and objects of historical, cultural,
and artistic importance were destroyed; and
WHEREAS, The destruction of these cultural resources represents a
significant loss for the Palestinian people and the world; and
WHEREAS, Palestinian libraries and cultural institutions are urgently in
need of restoration and assistance; and
WHEREAS, The American Library Association deplores the destruction of
library and cultural resources anywhere in the world; and, therefore the
destruction of these library and cultural resources; and
WHEREAS, IFLA met in Jerusalem in 2000 and met with Palestinian librarians
and established a working relationship of cooperation; and, therefore, be
RESOLVED, that the American Library Association calls upon the government
of the United States, as well as other governments, intergovernmental
organizations and non governmental organizations to prevent further
destruction of libraries and cultural resources and to provide material
assistance for the reconstruction and restoration of these resources; and,
be it further
RESOLVED, That the American Library Association take leadership in
recommending that IFLA establish a study group on Palestinian libraries
and cultural institutions, and establish a mechanism for providing
assistance to Palestinian libraries and cultural institutions; and, be it
RESOLVED, That the International Relations Committee of the American
Library Association is hereby charged with implementing this resolution
and will report back to Council at Midwinter 2003.
Adopted by the Council of the American Library Association June 19, 2002

Copyright © 2002, American Library Association.
Last Modified: Monday, 01-Jul-2002 17:38:38 CDT


Maurice J. (Mitch) Freedman, MLS, PhD
President of the American Library Association


"xxxxxxxxx" wrote:

Dear President. Freedman,

Like so many organizations, like many newspapers and National Public Radio,
the stand taken by the American Library Association is
lamentable. Condemnation of Israel unbalanced by any mention of atrocities
against civilians committed in the name of the Palestinian organizations is
unfathomable. It is especially true in an environment of professionals,
whose job it is to evaluate information. As President Lawrence Summers of
Harvard University said in a chapel speech, anti-Semitism has always been
with us, but it has no place in rational discourse. Not in academia, not in
libraries, not in public rhetoric.
Murder of non-combatants is not war--it is slaughter. And slaughter is not
heroic, or politically-justifiable, or legal.
I urge you and the other leaders of the ALA to distance the organization
from this disgusting and disreputable stance!


Maurice J. (Mitch) Freedman, MLS, PhD
President of the American Library Association; freedman[at]

Director, Westchester (NY) Library System
410 Saw Mill River Road - Suite 1000
Ardsley, NY 10502-2605
Voice: (914) 231-3223; fax: (914) 674-4193

All matters concerning the U*N*A*B*A*S*H*E*D Librarian,
Should be sent to <editor[at]>
"I'll be seeing you, in all the old familiar places..."

SRRT Coordinator Rory Litwin's public response to Mitch Freedman:

Mitch: I support your response to the above note to a level of about
ninety percent, but I have one strong point of difference which I need
to make clear on behalf of SRRT.

You stated that the author of the article in the Jewish Press confused
the SRRT resolution and the ALA resolution. While he does vastly
overestate the influence that SRRT has on ALA policy, I could find
nothing in the article that I could identify as indicating an actual
confusion between the ALA and the SRRT resolutions. For you to claim
that such a confusion exists puts SRRT in a difficult position in
in terms of our opposition to the One Voice policy, which would prohibit
us from our established practice of disseminating our own resolutions to
the public. We have been long accused of creating confusion as to ALA's
actual positions by stating positions of our own. In our opinion, we have
never created the confusion of which we are being accused, and critics of
ALA have always had a correct understanding of ALA's positions, as these
critics do today. The author of "Librarians Against Israel" has clearly
read both the SRRT and the ALA resolutions on Palestine and knows the
difference between the two. This is entirely evident in the article.
That the SRRT resolution was the prior resolution and essentially the
source of the ALA resolution is not a fact which should be suppressed.
It's also important to note that in this case it was not SRRT's past
practice of disseminating its resolutions to the public and the press
which resulted in the Jewish Telegraphic Agency's learning about it last
summer, but their presence at the ALA Membership Meeting where the
resolution was distributed by ALA staff.

I would like you to ask you not to allow yourself to assist anyone in
shifting the blame for this PR crisis onto SRRT for our refusal to
be quiet. The criticism of ALA's "Resolution on the Destruction of
Palestinian Libraries, Archives, and Other Cultural Institutions" is not
based on any confusion but on the actual resolution which ALA Council

Let me also state for the record something that Mitch knows well but the
author of the article does not: that while many of us in SRRT's leadership
(a large proportion of us Jews, I might add) are highly critical of
Israeli policy, we are not "haters" or anti-semites by any stretch of the
imagination. Our criticism of Israeli policy - and in some cases,
opposition to Zionism - is for each of us motivated by the ethical
teachings of our own cultural histories and a rational assessment of
political realities.

Rory Litwin, SRRT Coordinator

6. Links

Information for Social Change No. 16 (Winter 2002/2003)

Includes "The Social Value of the Local Neighbourhood Library,"
by Jonathan Rutherford, articles on the recent IFLA meeting, an article
on "The USA PATRIOT Act and American Libraries" by Robin Rice, articles
on GATS and globlazation, and other interesting stuff.


Kaiser Family Foundation study on internet filtering - very important study


Who Owns the Internet? You and I Do
NY Times, 12/29/2002


Five Technically Legal Signs for Your Library


Bill of Rights Pared Down to a Manageable Six




Google's annual search highlights


India's "Freedom of Information Bill 2002"


Steve Cisler's report on the World InfoCon meeting in Amsterdam


'Bury My Heart' writer and librarian Dee Brown dies at 94


"The Progress of Science and Useful Arts":
Why Copyright Today Threatens Intellectual Freedom
Free Expression Policy Project report


Bill of Rights Defense Committee
Helps local governments pass resolutions against parts of the USA PATRIOT Act

[ Thanks LII ]


Glossary of book-related terms from Abebooks

[ Thanks LII ]


Two interesting articles from First Monday

Volume 7, Number 12 - December 2nd 2002

Beyond "Couch Potatoes": From Consumers to Designers and Active Contributors
by Gerhard Fischer

Posthuman Law: Information Policy and the Machinic World
by Sandra Braman


advanced image content analysis techniques for digitised works of art


Univ of Edinburgh's School of Informatics suffers fire loss:

Fire destroys librarian's work

[ Thanks Dan Tsang (for the link, not the fire) ]


UNESCO New Year's Greeting from Mark Rosenzweig


7. Amusing searches

The following is a list of amusing search expressions that led from search
engines - mostly Google - to pages on during December, 2002.

politicians "punk" stereotype
jealousy that lies in the minds of foriegn men
peer-reviewed articles on police chases
Karl Marx Satan worshiper
criteria that a book needs to have in order to be in oprahs book club
what will happen to the world when humans are no more
who owns words?
picture of american flag waving in the wind
Frog warrior pics
why is congress? and why did they invented it? and why do we need it?
Dec. 2002 Email Addresses of Gad in U.S.A.
weird pictures of Jesus Christ
infotrieve sucks
media lab dilettante
jcrew lawsuit all white models
amusing gay statistics
arabic bongs
"don't like" "goshen college"
penis development in bangalore
hourly wage for list serve moderators
find top secret information thta your not supposed to know about
What does American Democracy stand for?
The Pros and The Cons Of Huck Finn
pics of stupid lazy people
canadian gas masks that cover the whole head
Pokemon Porn No subscription
what are popes salaries
a completed project on a poster project board
idi amin's wives
the location of Brazil
uncle fester advanced techniques
Monologues pertaining to woman controlling their men
i need an article on how a group was formed and how it became a disaster.
free porn password jesus
how can i cheet on science work sheet
give me a copy of martain luther king jr speech
asparagus boy penis
should i be a librarian or a missionary?
a essay on why not to fight
the juice maker as seen on television
mummified body of earl of bothwell
"in the night kitchen" offensive photo example
massachusetts- bongs
gumball machine laws
masturbating effects on bodybuilding
only girls and sheeps sex pictures




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