How to Top Off a Protest

There couldn’t have been a better conclusion for the Showdown on K Street than with the evening’s DC premiere screening and discussion at Busboys & Poets and organized by IPS. The new documentary, PLUNDER; The Crime of Our Time, by Danny Schechter “looks at the financial crisis, not as a business or a political story, but as a crime story”. And Mr. Schechter (a.k.a. the News Dissector) was in town for the post screening discussion.

The purpose of the event was for us to arm ourselves with what I like to call information ammunition. Building a progressive movement necessarily includes those with arsenals of information and analysis. Because acting thoughtfully is just as important as action oriented thinking. The two are not the same nor does one presuppose the other.

Before the event that night Danny did a short radio interview with Dr. Jared Ball, host of Jazz & Justice on WPFW 89.3 FM, which proved to be a very interesting. Check it out and fortify yourself with that.

After a rainy day and people having protested and marched all day we had no idea what kind of turn out to expect for the 9pm event. To our surprise and satisfaction the post Showdown screening was a success. Plunder was a timely and perfect culmination for everything that had taken place. While the film did simplify a lot, it also showed just how complex the crime(s) that had been committed were and how slippery it makes the work of anyone trying to prosecute the criminals. James Early mc’d the event superbly and moderated the post panel discussion in a packed Langston Room. There was also a surprise cameo appearance by Ralph Nader who opened the film with remarks about Danny and the issue of news media integrity.

The panel that followed was energized by Erica Smiley, Southern Regional Organizer for Jobs with Justice and involved in the organizing of the K Street Showdown. IPS fellow and director of the Cities for Progress and Cities for Peace projects, Karen Dolan also spiced up the panel. And, of course there was Danny Schechter, independent filmmaker and TV producer with the award-winning independent company, Globalvision.

This funky little mix was put together to give you a feel for the evening. Take a listen (MP3) at some highlights and enjoy.