Are we hearing the truth about San Bernadio shootings?

Tune in to TVSet for the live show at 6:00 p.m. for a discussion on the San Bernadino shootings. Are we really hearing the true story being reported? The international Climate conference and other topics will also be discussed. And, of course, the show wraps up with international cartoons.

Below are links that will be referenced in the show.


Activists Urge Attorney General to Call Attack on Planned Parenthood Clinic an Act of Terror

FBI calls San Bernardino mass shooting a terrorist attack

Meet Syed Farook And Tashfeen Malik, The Husband And Wife San Bernardino Shooters

Gun Industry Executives Say Mass Shootings Are Good for Business

Are we hearing the true story in the media. An eye witness account: Sally Abdelmageed-1

Gun control bill


Paris climate talks accomplish nothing to curb global warming

India: Hundreds die in Tamil Nadu floods

How rains paralyzed India’s Chennai


Defense Contractors Cite “Benefits” of Escalating Conflicts in the Middle East


Donald Trump Tells Pro-Israel Crowd He Can’t Be Bought, Gets Booed

Specter of Drones Firing Tear Gas on Crowds Worries Human Rights Group

Congress Moves Again to Block Investigation of Congressional Insider Trading

“No More Excuses” for Not Prosecuting Government Officials for Torture

“Snowden Effect” in Action: NSA Authority to Collect Bulk Phone Metadata Expires

Lobbyists, in Strategy Session, Conclude That Refugee Crisis “Helps Us” Defeat Regulations

Israel is the Main Purchaser of ISIS Oil

Monsanto to Be Put on Trial for “Crimes against Nature and Humanity” at The Hague


Political Corruption in America

158 American households comprised nearly half of all the money donated to 2016 presidential campaigns thus far. These donars are disproportionately white, male, old, and wealthy…deriving their wealth from just three industries: finance, energy, and real estate.” and The New York Times Magazine

Political Corruption


This week’s TVSet takes on the issue of political corruption and what it means for what remains of the middle class and those struggling to find a satisfying way of life. Tune in for a lively conversation on Portland Cable Access, Channel 11 at 6 p.m. (and Channel 22 for repeats; check the TV Set Schedule for dates and time).



Here are some links that will be referenced on the show:

State Integrety
Scoring how well various states measure up (Oregon got an “F”)
Battle to Expose Government Corruption
The American Anti-Corruption Act | Criminalize Corruption.
What’s in the Act? | The American Anti-Corruption Act
Frequently Asked Questions | The American Anti-Corruption Act
Just 158 families account for nearly half of all presidential campaign donations
Political corruption has been well documented.
Corruption book 3Corruption book 1Corruption book 2

Gun Violence, Environment & Computer Security Discussed

Gun Violence_101815_guns_periscopic_com

Of 11,419 gun death victims in 2013, 85% were male and about 50% were 30 years of age or younger. Source:

This week’s TVSet show takes on three big issues: Gun violence, human impact on the environment and computer security (particularly Windows 10 security concerns). Tune in on Channel 11 tonight, October 18 at 6:00 p.m. The show repeats October 21 on Channel 22 at 7:00 p.m. and on October 26 on Channel 23 at 5:00 p.m.

Do your own research on the issues using these links:







WIN-10_AUTOMATED_SETTINGS (DestroyWindows-10 Spying)

















Every Refugee has a Story

Everything is a bit chaotic, but at the same time everything flows and A LOT is achieved. It is quite impressive.”

Syrian refugee family after arriving on the Greek Island of Kos. Photo:

TVSet has a friend helping refugees on the Greek island of Kos. She is sending us updates of her work and the situation on the island. Our thanks to Barbara and all the other volunteers that are trying to ease the journey of refugees fleeing war and persecution. And we offer a reminder that it the moral and legal duty of each country to welcome refugees. To read more about Barbara’s journey and the refugee crisis, read the October 4 TVSet blog.


Refugees arrive on Kos having traveled across the Mediterranean in a small dinghy. Photo:

October 6, 2015

We just moved to a new warehouse and I have been sorting used clothes most of the time. Also, I have been helping with food distribution. In the evening, many of us go to the port to see off refugees who leave with the ferry to Athens at 8 pm. We take jackets, sweaters and shoes because it is colder in Athens. As far as we know, there is little help in Athens. Also, we distribute a brochure that helps them orient themselves in Athens. Most refugees stay on Kos for 2-3 days only.

There are handicapped people here who can barely walk who do not get special aid!! How are they going to make the long journey?

Last night I went to the port at [12:00 a.m.] just to get a taste of the night shift. Between midnight and [1 a.m.] about 20 people arrived, most of them Pakistanis. At night we distribute water, some food, clothes for those who are wet. There are two night shifts, 12-4 a.m., 4-9 a.m. About 8 people should be in each shift because people arrive in throngs often.
I left around 1:30 am. I leave the night work to young people. Many of them work round the clock during the time they are here. Lots of Swedish volunteer. That country is impressive!

Refugees finding brief refuge on Kos. Photo:

There is a lack of good management, which is not surprising given that we are all volunteers and most people stay for 1-2 weeks only. Everything is a bit chaotic, but at the same time everything flows and A LOT is achieved. It is quite impressive. Many young volunteers give it all during the short time that they are here.

I will continue sorting clothes today. Tomorrow I am off to Kalymnos.


October 11, 2015

Syrian refugee family_Barbara

Syrian refugee family arrives on Kalymnos via Turkey. Photo: Barbara Schulz

On the photo you see Adla and her two kids. She is Kurdish, from Syria. Her husband, a philosophy professor in Damascus, was killed by IS two years ago. Her parents died in the war, also. She fled with her family via Lebanon and Turkey. They went to Izmir and from there to the harbor. She paid 4.800 euro for herself and the two kids for passage to Kalymnos on a very small boat. See picture. Twelve refugees were stuffed into this small boat. While waiting for the boat, a plane checking for migrants flew over. They hid under the trees. The sea was very calm, so they decided to cross. They were lucky and arrived.

I met them at the harbor the day I arrived here. Since there is such squalor where they put up the refugees for the night, I paid a room for them at Papadi’s [accommodations where Barbara is staying] for two nights. 50 euros well spent!

Boat carry refugees_Barbara

Small boat that carried 12 refugees from Izmir, Turkey, to Kalymnos, Greece. Photo: Barbara Schulz

They are waiting for some papers from the police and then they are off to Athens, and then the long journey to Austria, where she has a brother.

Every refugee has a story…


Refugee accommodations_Barbara

Refugee accommodations, Kalymnos, Greece. Photo: Barbara Schulz

Refugee Crisis Breaks All Records

Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 14(1)


Fifty-nine million five hundred thousand. That’s the number of displaced persons fleeing armed conflict, persecution and humanitarian crises in 2014. That is the most displaced persons since World War II and the UN predicts 2015 will see even more refugees trying to find a place to call home, where they can find stability, jobs, education and political, religious, speech freedoms. At least that is their hope. And they are willing to sacrifice everything to attempt to start their lives over in a strange country, with unfamiliar culture and language, and where they are likely to be treated with suspicion and as second-class citizens.

The millions arriving in Europe – most often via Iran, Libya and Turkey – are not migrants. They are refugees, and the distinction is critical. In the aftermath of World War II, 141 countries signed on to the United Nations Convention‘s Status of Refugees, a landmark that sets the standards for the treatment of refugees. This international law dictates that countries have responsibility to protect refugees.

A few definitions:

  • A refugee is forced to flee their country to escape war, persecution or a natural disaster. It is estimated that there are close to 20 million refugees in 2014. These are people for whom denial of asylum has potentially deadly consequences.
  • Internally displaced persons are forced to flee their homes, but they remain within their country’s borders, an estimated 38.2 million in 2014.
  • An estimated 1.8 million people were awaiting the outcome of claims for asylum.
  • A migrants is someone who chooses to seek better living conditions in another country. Countries deal with migrants based on individual immigration policies and processes, while international law dictates that countries have a responsibility to protect refugees.

Rights crucial to refugee protection required by countries signed onto the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and/or the 1967 Protocol include:

  • Recognition
  • Protection
  • Providing alternatives to detention
  • Protection against discrimination

Tune into TV Set airing October 14, 2015 and its rebroadcasts for a timely and thought provoking discussion. Barbara, a friend of TVSet is on the ground in Kos, Greece, volunteering to help arriving refugees get shelter, food and water for Kos Solidarity. Here are letters posted to the show’s host, Jim Wrathall:

October 1, 2015 – I arrived in Kos and shared a cab from the airport with some young German women from Cologne who, as it turns out, are also volunteers. They are meeting someone from Kos Solidarity tomorrow so I am connected already. They said that about 500 refugees land each night. The owner of the hotel where I stay said it was 1000 per night in the summer.

— Barbara

October 2, 2015 – Well, I met some people from Kos Solidarity this morning. The meeting place downtown is near the harbor, right next to the beach and the police office. Along the beach there are about fifty tents, all inhabited by men, most of them young guys. I heard they are mostly from Bangladesh and Pakistan. The Syrian families all live in hotels, which are paid for by Swedish or UK organizations. Across the water is Turkey. It is so close you can see individual houses. It just takes 40 min by ferry to get there, and it only costs 10 euro for tourists, but it is much more expensive for the refugees.

After a short intro we were immediately put to work. We distributed croissants and milk to the young male refugees, who are made stand in line. They were well behaved. No problems. Women volunteers were advised to wear sleeves, no tank tops or tight shorts because of testosterone levels.

Near the beach there are many mobile toilets and there is a hose so the guys can clean themselves.

After distributing breakfast, I went to their warehouse, the logistical center, and helped make sandwiches. We made 700 sandwiches for dinner. I heard that there are currently 800 refugees on Kos, and that they are ferried off to Athens within a few days after registering here.

Most of the people who work here are young European volunteers. It looked like only 15-20 percent were Greek. Lots of Germans, Dutch, Italians, British, Irish, also some Argentineans. Most volunteers stay for a week only, it seems.

The warehouse is the storage place for donations, which are sorted into piles. Jobs for volunteers are preparing/packing food, sort and pack clothes, toys and whatever is donated and take these things to the beach and the hotels. Most of the time there is no manager or leader around and it all seems a bit chaotic, but somehow things flow because there are so many people ready to work. Other jobs are cleaning the beach, sorting donations at the warehouse. There is also a nightshift: patrolling the beach by car and pick up new refugee arrivals, take them to tents or hotels, give them blankets. The most important meeting is at 9 pm at a restaurant where all volunteers convene and sign up for jobs the following day. The food there is supposed to be excellent.

One can work the whole day and night, and one can try to be ambitious and help organizing. I am not ambitious and plan to work only morning till mid-afternoon. Then I will take a nap and study Greek, take a stroll. I will also take some days off and explore the island.

There are other organizations here: UN, MSF (Doctors Without Borders), Red Cross. Two German women expats cook Syrian dishes for the families in their home. All help is welcome and possible.

— Barbara

October 3, 2015 – Hi. Just a quick update. Yesterday I spent most of the day helping a young Pakistani who had dislocated his shoulder. Took him to the hospital. It took forever till the doctor came. One of his friends died on the boat trip. While we were waiting police came with a dead body. Today they found a baby dead on the beach. I have not yet done a night shift – they are the most strenuous because most people arrive at night and need immediate care: dry clothes, food, a place to stay. Today I worked at one of the hotels where Syrian families stay. I helped organize things, distributed food etc.

The Swedes are by far the biggest group of volunteers, and very generous donators. I am fine and like what I do. I am still not overworked, and still take naps. In a few days I will go to Kalymnos, another island. They need more help there.

— Barbara

Below are links relevant to the show’s discussion:

Guide to Intl Refugee Law –

Refugee crisis: What’s happening on the ground in Greece –

Here’s how you can help during the refugee crisis in Europe –

Refugee crisis: apart from Syrians, who is travelling to Europe? –

Department of Defense Information Report –

A Deep Social Malaise

South Carolina_abc news dot go dot com

Prayers in Charleston, South Carolina. Photo:

What is it like to be an American in America, land of the free and the brave?

A militarized police, which is meant to protect its citizens, can be confrontational and deadly. We’ve seen too many examples of that these past months, though it’s nothing new to our black – and other ethnic minority – citizens. And now we mourn the death of nine more human beings. It’s too easy to write off the killer’s actions as purely racist. Other social and cultural forces are at play.

“Mass killings are a social, not individual, phenomenon, and must be understood as manifestations of a social malaise: the deepening contradictions of American capitalism, and, above all, the increasing resort to violence on the part of the American government at all levels…A quarter-century of war has polluted American politics, culture and the media with the glorification of military violence, incessant fear mongering, and the promotion of anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment.” (Source: World Socialist Web Site, American militarism and the Charleston killings, June 20, 2015)

We’ve had decades to heal our nation and embrace the humanity of all races. But we haven’t gotten very far along that healing path. Perhaps it’s because our government and our capitalist system have created a culture of violence rather than benevolence. Diplomacy and compromise seem to have blown away with the wind. Peace seems an impossibility. African Americans are disproportionately incarcerated. And we incarcerate too many, destroying lives, families and communities. We teach children to fear and diminish their potential and future as a result. We teach adults to fear, too; many of us are afraid of speaking out against authority and speaking up for our rights and the rights of others. And we take away the hope of leading a life of peace, safety, love and opportunity.

Jon Stewart of the Daily Show put the jokes aside to focus on the tragedy of the shooting. Poignantly, he points out the disproportionate response by the U.S. government of a faraway threat from ISIS, where we spend billions and thousands of American and native lives, and the realities of threats at home, where we do little or nothing to change our fundamental culture.

South Carolina_qz dot com

Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Charleston, South Carolina. Photo:

This is wrong. Very, very wrong. What’s it going to take?

Bernie and a Progressive Agenda

“When you take on the billionaire class, it ain’t easy,” Bernie Sanders said at Brookings [before announcing his candidacy for president]. “We would have to put together the strongest grassroots movement in the modern history of this country, where millions of people are saying, ‘You know what? Enough is enough.’ ” From Theo Anderson’s In These Times article titled “Why Bernie Sanders is The Perfect Candidate for this Moment in American Politics”

Bernie Sanders

Senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. A man of the people. Photo credit:

He’s been called impatient, confrontational, a crackpot, and passionate about progressive issues. With an agenda a majority of Americans believe in, main stream press and political pundits are still saying presidential candidate and democratic socialist Bernie Sanders is unelectable.

And yet, he’s packing venues.

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” Attributed to Mahatma Gandhi

TVSet’s final program on June 21 before its summer break will focus on Senator Sanders’ entry into the presidential race. Be sure to tune in to cable Channel 11 (Portland area) at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday.

“Bernie Sanders cannot be ignored—his message speaks too powerfully to the current political moment. And he certainly will not calm down—not when, as he says at every opportunity, 99 percent of all new income is going to the top 1% of Americans, the ‘real’ unemployment rate is 12.7 percent and the United States has the highest rate of child poverty in the developed world.” (Source:

Senator Sanders’ platform has remained consistent throughout his political career, unusual in the political arena.

“It’s safe to say that Mr. Sanders has never wavered, over the last half century, in his withering critiques of capitalism, poor race relations or the influence of money on democracy.” (Source: The Observer)

Sanders is being credited with pulling Hillary Clinton’s political platform to the left. So what is his focus? At its core: income inequality and a political system corrupted by money. His positions on related issues include:

  • Social Services: Expanding Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and nutrition programs
  • Regulating Wall Street: Break up the big banks, which are too powerful to reform
  • Climate Change: Take a leadership role in reversing climate change and transform the U.S. energy system away from polluting fossil fuels and towards energy efficiency and sustainability
  • Healthcare: A fundamental right for all (he believes in a single payer system)
  • Income Taxes: Higher taxes on the wealthy (When asked why the rich should pay more taxes, he responded “Because they love this country and they want to see future generations do well.”)
  • Unions: Supports rebuilding unions
  • Wages: Supports raising the minimum wage
  • Pay Equity: Supports a federal law mandating equal pay for equal work; equal pay for women
  • Trade: Opposes the Trans Pacific Partnership and similar free trade deals
  • Education: Supports making public college tuition free in the United States
  • Campaign Finance Reform: Advocates a constitutional amendment that would effectively prevent corporations from making political donations. Supports public funding of elections.

Going back to the “then they fight you” part of the Gandhi quote above, a 1972 essay written by Senator Sanders for the Vermont Freeman, and alternative newspaper, has emerged and is being raised as a specter of his unelectability. Intended to attack gender stereotypes at a time when women were fighting for recognition and equality, the text is being used out of context and referenced in media interviews. The essence of the article proposed that there should be equality between sexes; no sex should be dominant or submissive. You can read the text for yourselves in the image below. Then you be the judge.

Bernie Sanders Essay

Essay written by Bernie Sanders 43 years ago for a small alternative newspaper. Media is using it to question Senator Sanders’ integrity. Photo credit: Mother Jones

Charles C.W. Cooke, writer for the conservative National Review, dismissed the essay:

“Nobody honestly believes that Bernie Sanders is a sexual pervert or that he is a misogynist or that he intends to do women any harm. Nobody suspects that he harbors a secret desire to pass intrusive legislation or to cut gang rapists a break. Really, there is only one reason that anyone would make hay of this story, and that is to damage the man politically.”

Are you a believer in Senator Sanders’ platform and his integrity? Would you and your neighbors be better off under his reforms? Or perhaps you feel as Chris Hedges’ does: The corporate state seeks to get us to participate in the political charade of choreographed elections (see link below).

Write to TVSet at, follow us on Twitter (@TVSetPDX) and Like us on Facebook (Tvset Pdx).

Want to know more about Senator Sanders? Check out these links:

Katie Couric’s interview

Wikipedia on Bernie:

Juan Cole on Bernie Sanders:

Juan Cole in Bernie and Israeli support, issues

Project VoteSmart – Bernie Sandes

Well thought out Progressive critique of Bernie Sanders & Elizabeth Warren

And here is Chris Hedges to throw some cold water in your face: