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Honored for torture exposé, Tapley points out more work to be done

At an October 26 event attended by five previous awardees and nearly 30 others, the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine presented Portland Phoenix writer Lance Tapley with its 2012 Roger Baldwin Award, recognizing his nearly 100 stories over seven
Laurels
By JEFF INGLIS  |  November 09, 2012
The Man Nobody Knew: Short Take

Review: The Man Nobody Knew: In Search of My Father, CIA Spymaster William Colby

"My father lived in shadows," says filmmaker Carl Colby in voiceover. "He liked being invisible." His documentary is a valiant but ultimately futile attempt to understand William Colby, the ex-CIA head who died in 1996.
Carl Colby documents his father's life
By GERALD PEARY  |  November 18, 2011
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Review: The Mill and the Cross

Clever CGI allows the effective recreation of a 16th century Flanders.
Conceptually confusing
By GERALD PEARY  |  October 21, 2011
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Review: The Gamm's Torture is front-loaded

Black humor sure is better than no humor at all. What do you do with the disproved defenses of torture besides get angry?
Rights and wrongs
By BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 13, 2011
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Review: Gorey at the Athenæum, animation at MassArt

In Edward Gorey's old-timey illustrated books, parents leave on an excursion and never return, friends enter a tunnel and never come out, a mother falls ill and dies, a man driving around searching for his lost daughter runs over her with his car, a pec
Cartoon network
By GREG COOK  |  February 18, 2011

'No-touch torture' in New Jersey

Deane Brown, a Maine inmate shipped out of state because of his criticism of the Maine State Prison, is now being held in New Jersey in "one of the most repressive" prison units in the country, often reserved for "political" or activist prisoners like
Maine Whistleblower Watch
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  January 28, 2011


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5 years against torture

The Portland Phoenix ’s prison investigation, focusing on the Maine supermax, has published 75 stories over the past five years. Here are some of the key pieces, with brief updates on what, if anything, has happened since.
Penal past
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  November 12, 2010
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Review: Saw VII 3D

All the freshness of a hacked-off body part from Saw I.
Going out with a whimper
By TOM MEEK  |  November 05, 2010

Former inmate, activist now free to speak out

Last year, when Ray Luc Levasseur was invited to speak on the University of Massachusetts — Amherst campus to commemorate the anniversary of a federal sedition trial held in Springfield, the speech prompted vehement protests from police groups and state
New releases
By RICK WORMWOOD  |  October 15, 2010
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Mickey Mouse Multiculturalism

Massachusetts treasurer and independent candidate for governor Tim Cahill was off base when he accused incumbent governor Deval Patrick of "playing politics with terrorism" in the wake of Patrick's visit to the controversial Roxbury mosque maintained by
Governor Patrick's problematic Mosque visit. Plus, Bush — and the GOP — vote yes for torture
By EDITORIAL  |  June 11, 2010

Jon Ronson, Investigator of the Unsettling, at Tommy Doyle's [Sunday]


Jon Ronson, on "The Men Who Stare At Goats"The U.S. military has employed some pretty ridiculous tactics in its long and expensive War on Terror....
By Carrie Battan  |  May 07, 2010


Radical night out in Portland

“People are upset about Guantánamo and Abu Ghraib,” Noam Chomsky told 750 people packed into the Woodfords Congregational Church last Saturday night, “but if you’re concerned about human rights, take a walk into a maximum-security prison.”
 Activism Optimism
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  April 30, 2010
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Are doctors complicit in prison torture?

In the past few years an outcry has arisen over the involvement of military and CIA medical professionals and psychologists in torture. Some critics have even suggested criminal prosecution of the medical staff involved or, at least, revocation of their
The Maine medical community looks at solitary confinement
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  April 23, 2010
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Screams from solitary

The 132-man supermax unit within the 925-man Maine State Prison is an expensive, taxpayer-funded torture chamber that for 18 years has sucked in mostly nonviolent, mostly mentally ill prisoners and ground them up by means of mind-destroying solitary conf
‘By dehumanizing prisoners, we dehumanize ourselves.’
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  February 19, 2010

Anti-solitary campaign expands

As the February 17 State House public hearing approaches on the bill to restrict solitary confinement at the Maine State Prison, the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), which sparked national debate about Abu Ghraib and Guantánamo, has a
Stopping Supermax Torture
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  February 05, 2010
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Flynn-terrogation

In his powerful new memoir, The Ticking Is the Bomb (W.W. Norton), Scituate native Nick Flynn recounts a conversation he had with a man in Turkey.
Obsessed with the wrongs of Abu Ghraib, local author Nick Flynn traveled across the globe to meet its victims
By MIKE MILIARD  |  January 15, 2010


Anti-torture bill backed by State House leadership


Representative Jim Schatz (D-Blue Hill) has gotten seven of the 10 members of legislative leadership to back his proposal to tightly restrict the usage of...
By Jeff Inglis  |  October 27, 2009

Time for law to end torture

In a collaborative effort between human-rights activists and incarcerated Mainers, a bill to end the use and abuse of solitary confinement has been drafted and will be submitted to legislators soon.
Letters to the Portland Editor, September 18, 2009
By PORTLAND PHOENIX LETTERS  |  September 18, 2009

Human rights watch

Last week, on the heels of anti-torture panels and protests in Portland, Washington DC, and elsewhere, the Justice Department told the nation that it would have to wait a few more days before information about American torture policies and practices is
Acknowledging, and punishing, torture
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  June 26, 2009

Obama and torture


Last night's panel on torture was a success, according to those who attended; I had the privilege of...
By Deirdre Fulton  |  June 17, 2009
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Jesse "The Governing Body" Ventura


We talked to Jesse "The Governing Body" Ventura on the show today about the WWF, The View, our broke...
By Charlie  |  June 10, 2009


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Despot for attention

Former vice-president Dick Cheney has taken his torture tour all over the place in the past few weeks, waging an ongoing campaign to defend what the Bush administration called "enhanced interrogation."
Plus, vote for Passoni
By EDITORIAL  |  May 15, 2009
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Whitehouse: Pushing to pull the truth about Bush's war skullduggery from under bus

Rhode Island's Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse had a Joseph Welch moment during last week's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
Digging deep
By PETER VOSKAMP  |  March 11, 2009
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Proud to jump the shark

Who but David Mamet would have the macho audacity to name his TV show after the male genitalia?
Macho, loopy, and entertaining as hell, The Unit is prime Mamet
By JON GARELICK  |  February 25, 2009

Going off the rails


CNN is now reporting that New Hampshire senator Judd Gregg is withdrawing his name from consideratio...
By Jeff Inglis  |  February 12, 2009

Anti-torture petition drive winds down


The Black Bird Collective's eight-week petition drive gathering opposition to torture and human-righ...
By Jeff Inglis  |  December 09, 2008


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Three years and counting

For the past three years, Portland Phoenix contributing writer Lance Tapley has been the only reporter in Maine to pay attention to the appalling conditions suffered by inmates in the Maine State Prison
The Portland Phoenix' s prison scoops keep piling up
By PORTLAND PHOENIX STAFF  |  November 05, 2008
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McCain’s crooked talk on torture

It might surprise some that McCain’s record in opposing torture and the Bush administration’s terror-war approach is more complicated than his comments suggest.
Critics, including a local former army interrogator, say he’s trying to play both sides of the issue
By IAN DONNIS  |  September 17, 2008

Letters to the Portland Editor, August 29, 2008

I am writing about torture around the world that I think is related to possible torture in Maine prisons.
Collins backs torture
By LETTERS TO THE PORTLAND EDITOR  |  August 27, 2008
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Torture for the hostage-taker?

Will Michael Chasse, the inmate who allegedly held two people hostage on June 30 at the Maine State Prison, now be tortured by Governor John Baldacci’s administration?
Prison watch
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  July 09, 2008