A Blurry Line Between Propaganda and News
EDITORIAL: A shocking thing happens midway through Norman Solomon's documentary film War Made Easy.
While analysing the George W. Bush administration's lead-up to the Iraq invasion, Solomon plays a news clip of Eason Jordan, a CNN News chief executive who, in an interview with CNN, boasts of the network's cadre of professional "military experts." In fact, CNN's retired military generals-turned-war analysts were so good, Eason said, that they had all been vetted and approved by the US government.
War Made Easy, which is narrated by Hollywood actor and peace activist Sean Penn, begins as an antiwar film that decries the Bush administration's interventionist rationale and misinformation campaigns during the post-9/11 era.
In one scene, he describes how a Hollywood set designer was hired to build a news set (with polished backdrop and sleek high-definition televisions) for the public relations arm of the US military during the Iraq war. Presentations by military commanders and officials resemble news broadcasts. There is no discussion of the facts, and what the government says is accepted without question.
War Made Easy offers a timely criticism of the media, and portends an ominous future for the US news viewing public should they sit back and accept without question the pronouncements of political leaders and evening news anchors.
-------Yep, there's a whole lot of propaganda out there. But, if government propaganda is this insidious – what of the propaganda of the "opposition?"
If Hollywood and MSM can ignore fact with sleek presentation for the government would they not also be engaged to do the same for the "opposition"?
For those who believe BushCo is controlled by Israel and/or neocon Jews do they trust Jewish Solomon and Jewish Penn to come forth any less sleek, any less biased, with an altruistic agenda? Could the BushCo "opposition" be just another ruling class controlled cabal with a different means to the same end? Ya think?
Strikes me as ludicrous that former brawling badboy bratpacker Sean Madonna has become a world renowned "peace activist."
As BushCo propaganda is produced to promote wars for profit what is the "opposition" propaganda promoting? Peace? Hmmmm. Apparently, State propaganda performs better as the US historically fails to keep the peace for any length of time.
Are the sheople following promoters who produce what they want to hear? Remember the proverbial saying – the first casualty of war ... applies to all players.
Sunday, July 29, 2007
A Blurry Line Between Propaganda and News
Saturday, July 28, 2007
After four years of war, American Marines and soldiers have become socialized to atrocity.
Hedges is the respectable author who, along with other NYT team members (including ummm the truthsayer Judith Miller), shared a Pulitzer for their Explanatory Reporting on worldwide terrorism.
Such explanations as: " It was a real intelligence break, later recounted in detail by senior French intelligence officials, but it would prove too late to stop the World Trade Center plot. Enough time and work could have led investigators from Mr. Beghal to an address in Hamburg where Mohamed Atta and his cohorts had developed and planned the Sept. 11 attacks. But the hijackers had already slipped into the United States and were within days of carrying out their mission."
You see, there's my problem with exspurts such as Hedges. I, as a believer in an "inside job" dismiss anyone who pushes the official tale of Mohamed Atta & Cohorts plotted and perpetrated, developed and planned 9/11 from Hamburg, and that Western intel just needed more time to sort it all out.
A Harvard Divinity graduate, Hedges' latest book, American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America, outlines in frightening detail how America's powerful whitewing Christian fascists seek apocalyptic totalitarianism.
I fail to see the power Hedges attributes to the Christian right in American society; it's a cult and as cults go – the rightwing theocracy movement will never control a population which praises the Lord with a Hustler mag in one hand and BudLite in the other, whose fundamentalist leadership holds a collection plate in one hand and a hooker's phone number in the other.
But Hedges serves to reinforce the divide, i.e. open society good versus Christian coalition bad. No middle ground folks, you're either for or against one or the other; either tolerate everything or tolerate nothing. No truth allowed – this ideology or the other – please check only one.
In view of the perverse, gluttonous, self-absorbed average American the rightwing Christian threat was beaten back a long time ago by the liberal cult of if-it-feels-good tolerance.
In the article Accustomed to Their Own Atrocities in Iraq, U.S. Soldiers Have Become Murderers Hedges is eloquent as always. Quoting Biblical passages, relating war to man's primal fear, pain, ecstasy. "War is also the pornography of violence. It has a dark beauty, filled with the monstrous and the grotesque."
All those grotesque poetic monsters make chills run up and down the spine of the "left." And all that talk of pain, dark beauty and porno gives the "right" a hard-on.
HEDGES: After four years of war, American Marines and soldiers have become socialized to atrocity. The war in Iraq is now primarily about murder. There is very little killing.
However, when these monster troops return and beat their infant child to death, "progressives" will claim it's depression, PTSD - not murder. One specious excuse fits all.
Perhaps US society has finally created the perfect soldier – a unique blend of the liberal anything goes and onward Christian soldier - troops without conscience who get off on "murder" because it feels good and is blessed by the State.
The military is a reflection of society. Whatever the numbers of US troops reveling in an orgy of violence is representative of civilian society. For every arrogant racist criminal in uniform in Iraq there are tens of thousands of him at home. Let us hope there are not 350,000 murdering troops/contractors coming home.
Hedges editorializes action that occurs in every war. What stands out is the statement : "Military machines and state bureaucracies, who seek to make us obey, seek also to silence those who return from war to speak the truth … "
Your fear fix for the week. Fear of the machine because it's gonna come back and getcha if ya "speak truth to power"? Nice mantra that truth speak to power thingy. Chris Hedges is to the "left" what Chuck Krauthammer is to the "right." Pompous cheerleaders with agendas.
Did you read Hedges article and say yes, right on!, quote a line or two on the forum? Are you afraid of the government and it's military machine? Are you silent in the face of power (chat rooms do not count)? Do you pay your taxes, obey the State?
You're a good little armchair, a properly socialized civilian soldier. Please mark the appropriate box and submit. Your opinion is important. Bwaaahaahaahaa.
Posted by Kate-A at 12:48 PM
Friday, July 27, 2007
(Reenactment, victim Dorothy Malcom had her unborn baby cut from her womb.)
On July 25, 1946, four young African Americans -- George & Mae Murray Dorsey and Roger & Dorothy Malcom -- were shot hundreds of times by 12 to 15 unmasked white men in broad daylight at the Moore's Ford bridge spanning the Apalachee River, 60 miles east of Atlanta, Georgia. These killings, for which no one was ever prosecuted, enraged President Harry Truman and led to historic changes but were quickly forgotten in Oconee and Walton Counties where they occurred. No one was ever brought to justice for the crime.
MONROE, Georgia (CNN) -- The police were only about 50 yards down the road when the gun-wielding white mob stopped the car and dragged the two black men out, shoving them face first into the dirt.
The two women were next to be yanked from the burgundy Buick into the thick, sultry air of a Southern summer, one of them thrashing and flailing as she screamed and pleaded with the mob to spare her and her unborn child.
The lynch mob dragged the sharecroppers through the pine trees down a wagon trail to the Apalachee River and, on their leader's command, unleashed three torrents of gunfire.
-------My town here in the heartland gained notoriety for a 1940s lynching. On a Sunday morning Matt, a 22 y/o Black WWII veteran, was shot, beaten, dragged from the jail by a mob, tied to the back of a car, and dragged to the Black church - to make sure everyone was properly terrorized - he was doused in gasoline and burned, still alive. This case was also never solved.
Matt was accused of attacking a white woman in her home the night before. Nevermind that the 19 y/o girlie also living in the house left town immediately or that town gossip was Matt was tipping around with a white woman and her daddy and brothers were aware of the relationship.
An east coast professor/writer a few years ago published an "historical account" of our town's crime – he even visited Po'ville a few days and interviewed the elderly white victim and Matt's elderly sister. Sir, all I can say is "white-wash."
I grew up with this grisly account served as warning and to this day it haunts me. I still see an indifferent white crowd standing around, next to old cars with running boards, staring at Matt, body smoldering, reaching toward heaven with what's left of his charred hands. Lower class white folks here still mention the crime, almost as a casual reminder not to be too uppity.
The local sheriff at the time, was "attacked" as he tried to "stop the lynching", but could not identify any of the mob. But some old folks know the truth, it's not "quickly forgotten". I see the sons and grandsons today of the perpetrators and the sheriff and they know what their daddies did.
Posted by Kate-A at 11:02 AM
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
The video below is popping up on progressive sites again. I ignored the accusations of troops abandoning these men the first time the video made the rounds a year ago.
"Preston Wheeler, a truck driver for KBR a subsidiary of Halliburton shot this amazing video of his truck convoy being ambushed in Iraq. The attack occurred after the U.S. military made a wrong turn down a dead-end street. Mr. Wheeler is lucky to be alive. Three KBR truck drivers were killed after U.S. troops apparently abandoned the truck drivers."
My biggest gripe with this type of "reporting" is that self-proclaimed progressive sites also never hesitate to portray the troops as murdering thugs or sniveling cowards, and rarely do said "progressive" sites offer any possible alternative view of what really happened in situations such as this.
Many of the same websites bitch, moan, and condemn Halliburton contracts and contractors – then cry crocodile tears for the poor contractors abandoned by US troops, sometimes smugly panting that apparently US troops are cowards. Or worse yet the old line "see what an illegal war does to the troops?" Turns them into cowards?
Here's the official report from BigDaddy gov.
Another eyewitness view after good old trustworthy ABC reported on the attack in 2006: "Capt. Mike Waterman, the 1173rd's commander in Iraq, said all the surviving civilian drivers except Wheeler say the soldiers reacted properly. Soldiers at the back of the convoy fought forward to reach the rest of the civilian drivers, including Wheeler, until reinforcements arrived, military officials said.
"To me, those guys are gods," said civilian driver Rick "Poncho" Wynne of Wellpinit, Wash. "I have all the respect in the world for them. If it weren't for them, a lot more people would have died."
Waterman said two gun trucks were initially about 50 yards behind Wheeler's disabled truck before fighting their way forward to him.
"I'm sure he thought it was the insurgents doing all the shooting," Waterman said. "He was freaking out, but he didn't realize two gun trucks were holding off I don't know how many insurgents."
----So I ask, who saved blood money-maker Preston Wheeler's butt so he could return home to Mena Arkansas and whine? And why do anti-war "support the troopistas" pass around one-sided material as if it's gospel? 'Cause they know the ignorant among us cannot be objective, cannot or will not research the story, or hold an original opinion on anything, preferring to believe in captions.
Posted by Kate-A at 12:04 PM
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Counterpunch: Two columns of black smoke can still be seen rising over the New York skyline.
Not quite. The plumes of smoke are all that's left of two major hedge funds which blew up just weeks ago leaving nothing behind but a few smoldering embers and a mound of black soot.
The compiled assets of the Bear Sterns High-Grade Structured Credit Strategies Fund--nearly $20 billion--have vanished into the miasma of cyber-space soon be joined by $1.4 trillion of other, equally worthless, Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDO).
If you look closely, you'll see the mangled bodies of the CDOs, the CDSs (Credit Default Swaps), the RMBS (Residential Mortgage Backed Securities) and the other shaky debt-instruments being pulled from the wreckage and tossed on the bonfire.
Is this how it all ends? Will the sudden spike in subprime defaults send all the funds in "Hedgistan" crashing to earth?
No one knows--yet.
According to Bloomberg News, Bear Sterns announced last week that there's "little value left" in one of its funds and "no value left" in the other.
Nothing, nada, zippo.
(Psssst, its Stearns, not Sterns.)
-------Run for the hills, the hedges are melting, the hedges are melting.
"Hedgistan" has melted previously – with "the collapse of the Long Term Capital Management (LTCM) hedge fund in 1998. LTCM also followed “sound practices”—its valuation and pricing model was designed by Nobel laureates—but an unexpected shift in currency market valuations led to the collapse of the fund, necessitating a $3 billion bailout organised by the then Federal Reserve Board chairman Alan Greenspan in order to prevent a meltdown of the financial system."
Bear Stearns Cos. is getting a taste of its own medicine.
"It was Bear Stearns, the biggest broker to hedge funds, that nine years ago declined to join 14 other investment banks in the bailout of Long-Term Capital Management LP. Then last week, as New York-based Bear Stearns pleaded for help to rescue two of its hedge funds teetering on the brink of collapse, many of the same firms refused to come to its aid.
Merrill Lynch & Co., which pumped $300 million into LTCM, said no and seized $850 million of bonds held as collateral for loans it had made to the funds. Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Cantor Fitzgerald LP also pulled out, leaving Bear Stearns to sort through the wreckage of bad bets on subprime mortgage bonds and collateralized debt obligations."
Counterpunch: "…a cloud has settled-in over downtown Manhattan where gloomy-looking men in pinstriped suits are waiting for the other shoe to drop."
These suits have seen this before and there are men/women waiting to buy both shoes as soon as they drop, just as they did in 1998, i.e. United Capital Markets Holdings Inc.'s John Devaney.
Hedge funds are private investment partnerships mostly designed for the wealthy and institutions such as pensions and endowments. There are 6,597 hedge fund firms. Hedge funds took in record inflows of money this year – so unless the entire $1+ trillion hedge fund industry goes broke this is just another doom and gloom wolf cry.
Assets managed by hedge funds globally more than doubled in the past five years to almost $1.6 trillion as of the first quarter, according to Hedge Fund Research.
Even if the bubble bursts, never fear. The Wall Street boys, always in search of big money, will find a way to turn bubbles into a lot of loot, or is that loot a lot of bubbles?
I wonder if this Counterpunch sort of economic meltdown article is meant to frighten Joe Blow. Regardless, with the new economic world order Joe Blow is still moving to the back of the bus, swearing his po' underprivileged social status is because of Tyrone and José. (Although there are Joe Blows who read just enough to blame Masons, Illuminati, shape-shifting lizards, the Pope, Templars, secret societies, Bushco, or all of the above.)
Posted by Kate-A at 11:02 AM
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Roberts cranking out the hyperbole. Why anyone believes this overpaid establishment psyop putz is amazing. He has outdone himself with this recent piece for "progressives". Two years ago he was screeching "Bush cooking up two more wars …" with North Korea and Iran.
Now, however, Roberts has taken North Korea off the table. He says, or quotes someone who says : " Chertoff, Cheney, the neocon nazis, and Mossad would have no qualms about saving the bacon for the Republicans, who have enabled Bush to start two unjustified wars, with Iran waiting in the wings to be attacked in a third war."
Roberts fired up his cracked pot immediately when TPTB gave MSM the okay to yell BushCoNeocons are Nazis – in cahoots with Mossad.
Jews and Nazis just all getting along – who'da thunk it.
Apparently Roberts' latest solution to save us is "impeach now." Yessiree, getting rid of that madhatter in the Whites House will remove all the stink from this rotted system.
Paul pushes the "staged attack" could be planned theory, or a real one - who knows, to throw the nation into a dictatorial police state status. He believes the "neocon nazis" need to "save the bacon for the Republicans" and thus are – "with Iran waiting in the wings to be attacked in a third war".
He's gotta be kidding - does anyone believe at this point that a major domestic attack or a third war is going to help the Republican party? SCOTUS and vote tampering work for them, and Democrats.
For whatever reason, while reading Roberts' latest stinker for the public pile of b.s., I thought of Fletcher Prouty. If you're aware of the Secret Team that rules the United States and the world you've probably heard of Prouty. He first wrote of the ST around 1973 in his book The CIA and Its Allies in Control of the United States and the World.
Believing the CIA and it's allies (Mossad, British intel, KGB, etc. etc.) rule the world works for me. I would add the ST do so according to dictates from global bluebloods.
But Roberts plays a detractor, like a rodeo clown. Waving and flapping his cape at the "neocons" because the conservative meme is that true Republicans are not like that, because when this installment of the NWO is over we are to associate our heavier yoke with "neocons" not Republicans, with Mossad not CIA, with Bush cabal warmongers not capitalism operating as usual.
He shills more fear for more wars because the foolish believe the big nuclear one is coming and creative fear makes good protest signs and bumper stickers. Roberts adds it altogether with the standard, frenzied "impeach now" to save us from the neocons, Cheney, and Mossad – otherwise, Roberts assures us, we stand on the brink, the very brink I tell ya – of living in a dictatorial police state.
That's right – a police state : a political unit characterized by repressive governmental control of political, economic, and social life usually by an arbitrary exercise of power by police.
Sort of like what the people have now – except, in the coming police state - after being sentenced without due process "they" will ship us in boxcars to Halliburton prison camps where we will be abused and forced to make cheap plastic goods for Wal-mart which are then shipped to the free and new middle class in China and India.
Sing along with Paul:
Keep movin', movin', movin',
Though they're disapprovin',
Keep them doggies movin' Rawhide!
Don't try to understand 'em,
Just rope and throw and grab 'em,
Soon we'll be living high and wide.
Posted by Kate-A at 11:27 AM
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Ron Paul seems to have caught the interest of "the people." So I surfed around on his website, on his ratings with various groups, etc. and took a closer look. While I somewhat agree with a few of his stances on the issues I still think he's a hardnose survival of the fittest. I've written of him before with little praise – he's played the system too long to be anything but a good ol' boy.
On tax reform Paul is rated 89 percent by NTU, the National Taxpayers Union. That sounds good for taxpayer Joe Blow. But if you look at NTU's chart of who pays income taxes it appears the working and middle class, incomes of $26-99,000, pay the bulk of federal income tax. Here's a chart for 2003.
At first glance, it appears the top 1% pay the bulk of income taxes. But if you look long enough it really says that 66 percent of income taxes are paid by folks making $130,000 and below. If you break it down further the top 5 percent income bracket pays 20% of all federal income taxes, the top 10% pay 11.4%, the top 25% pay 18.%, and the top 50% pay 12.6% of federal income taxes paid.
Being a member of the top 10% to 50% club means you have a yearly adjusted gross income percentile of $94,891 to $29,019. In other words, the bulk of federal income taxes are paid by the working and middle classes. And quite likely you do not receive the perks the average $14.78 million annual salary CEO does.
Heaven help those in the 3.46 range taxpayers, below $29,019.
The NTU was founded in 1969 and states : "… our Number One job has been helping to protect every single American's right to keep what they've earned. Our guiding principle … has been: "This is your money and the government should return it to you."
Well, I dunno about you but my income taxes have steadily risen since 1969 and Uncle Scam returns none of it, but NTU rates Paul high so I guess the rest of America gets to keep what they earn. And "your money .. the government should return it to you" – isn't that a line from Dubya's teleprompter?
Ron Paul's stance and votes on tax issues:
# Voted YES on retaining reduced taxes on capital gains & dividends.
# Voted YES on making the Bush tax cuts permanent.
# Voted YES on $99B economic stimulus: capital gains & income tax cuts.
# Voted YES on Tax cut package of $958 B over 10 years.
# Voted YES on eliminating the Estate Tax ("death tax").
# Voted YES on $46B in tax cuts for small business.
# Overhaul income tax; end capital gains & inheritance tax.
# Phaseout the death tax.
Capital gains stands out. Hmmmm. If you made over $200,000 you like it. According to this from Center for Budget Policy : 70.7 percent of all filers in the nation had annual income below $50,000 in 2003; but this group received only 3.2 percent of the benefits from the capital gains tax cut that year. In contrast, those with incomes above $200,000 represented 2.0 percent of all filers, but received 80.5 percent of the capital gains tax-cut benefits.
Going through Paul's other votes and ratings from the On The Issues website he received an anti-senior rating under Social Security. A zero rating by NARAL, he's pro-life. ACLU 67 percent indicating a mixed record on civil rights. Rated 60% by CURE, indicating mixed votes on rehabilitation/crime. Supports a Constitutional Amendment for school prayer. Big Oil profits ok; Big Oil subsidies are not. Rated 5% by the LCV, indicating anti-environment votes. Rated 76% by the Christian Coalition: a pro-family voting record. Rated 67% by SANE, indicating a mixed record on military issues. Rated 47% by the AFL-CIO, indicating a mixed record on union issues.
I would say Paul is indeed for "the people" but it's the 2.0 percent people. He may think marijuana okay, he may be against the Iraq war (though voted to attack Afghanistan), he may be against the death penalty – but if he has the world his way, make sure while smoking your blunt that you praise Jesus, are completely and totally independent of any government handouts and have a really, really good job to save for your old age.
Posted by Kate-A at 4:14 PM
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Joseph Wilson (Plame) endorses Hillary Clinton. From the "left" blogosphere :
"Wilson has known Clinton for over a decade. He said she is not the aloof rock star that walks on stage, gives her speech, then walks off with her bodyguards without feeling or thought. "She's been a policy wonk since she was 21 and in school." Wilson believes Clinton is the one that understands the adversary we're all facing and will fight for us better than the rest of the field. "This is not a job interview," said Wilson, in response to the possibility of being in a Clinton administration."
From ElectionCentral : "Wilson, asked if he would serve under a Hillary administration if offered a post, says: "This is not a job interview," though he adds: "You never know."
---You were a life-long registered republican who didn't get a high post from BushCo. Did Poppy promise you a nice spot after all those years in Africa and in Iraq and telling Saddam to get out of Kuwait, then Poppy Bush introducing you as a true American hero because (reportedly) you saved thousands and said you'd bring your "own fucking rope"? What a man, what a man.
Those must have been heady days for ya Joe, moving up from years of flunky to hero of the moment. But some folks are just born yes-men. And it must run in the family, i.e. Uncle Pete Wilson is a servant for the BushCo too.
Come on Joe W., you self-serving word wonk, Secretary of State sounds good doesn't it? Oh by the way - what's the "adversary we're all facing"?
Posted by Kate-A at 11:13 PM
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iran and the United States will meet shortly to discuss security in Iraq, to follow up a landmark meeting held in May, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari said on Tuesday.
Washington accuses Shi'ite Iran of fomenting sectarian violence in Iraq. Iran denies backing the anti-U.S. insurgency and blames the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 for the bloodshed between Iraq's majority Shi'ite and minority Sunni Arabs.
In a sign that Iraq's deeply divided politicians might be bridging some of their many differences, the bloc of the anti-American Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said it had ended a boycott of parliament with immediate effect.
"Starting from today, we have ended our suspension in parliament. We are back," said Nassar al-Rubaei, spokesman for the bloc in parliament.
---- Of course Iran is fomenting violence in Iraq – what better way to impress upon the Anglos they will not totally own and operate the region? In turn, Anglos call for sanctions and threaten more war by sending out the appropriate respected journalist, pol, expert former something or other toady who periodically warn us the US plans further aggression.
Iraqis were living together before the war and will do so again. The current Iraq parliament is more representative than the US congress. We have 1 Black senator, but we do allow Blacks in the lower House at a whopping representative 9 percent. Last I read Iraq's 275 seats were 128 Shia, 53 Kurds, 55 Sunni, 25 to a secular Shiite group, and 14 to smaller parties.
I don't care where you read it, heard it, saw it for those shilling that the US is backing death squads in Iraq all I can say is 'wrong'. Death squads in Central America was Anglo political buddies aiding the Salvadoran angloligarchy to squash a peasant rebellion. Iraq is global oil; there are no friends – just contracts and deals. US supporting death squads in Iraq would be counterproductive to business. These "death squads" are Iraqi thugs seeking personal retaliation.
There are those sounding the alarm that Israel will attack Iran. Wrong again, unless Israel has a death wish (although possibly Israel is one big suicidal bomb the Christo-Anglos are yearning to detonate).
Israel is the Anglos little Chihuahua dog in the ME, yapping furiously and incessantly and scaring no one but pissing everyone off. Israel is a theme park to pilgrims who buy holy trips from US Jew Ticketmasters and Christian Wingnuts. Israel is a trailer court where wealthy US Jews send poor cousins who are good plantation managers. And it's all profitably and gloriously called the right to return. (Too lucrative a scam to detonate.)
Within a year or so the war should be "over" – mission accomplished sort of. The bulk of US troops will head home, the 150,000+ private contractors will of course remain indefinitely to protect oil – on your dime. Afghaninam will still drain the coffers and profit defense contractors for years to come.
The questions are – will "peace" come before the 2008 election or after? Which party gets to look like peacemakers? Will there be a lot of chapped asses if the GOP becomes the party of peace?
Posted by Kate-A at 1:31 PM
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Our quarterly memes have arrrived again this week. The quarterly scares are:
1. The imminent collapse of the US dollar.
2. The probable imminent al-Qciada attack, LIHOP or MIHOP variety.
3. Iran requesting Japenese refineries use the yen for crude oil (what happened to that Iran oil bourse? ).
4. A USS ship heading to the Gulf signals imminent war on Iran.
5. A prominent public figure (Ron Paul, Sheehan, etc.) hints that 9/11 was possibly an inside job and "they" may do it again, any day, maybe in your town, on you.
6. A new old bin Laden tape surfaces.
7. A prominent figure or someone close to a prominent figure (McCain's aide) is lewd and lascivious.
8. Sadly, however, the young blonde celebrity caught on tape handling a pipe, a bottle, or penis was not produced this week.
First of all, if the dollar collapses, rest assured that the rest of the world economies collapse. You will not be alone.
Yes, we could be attacked at any time, by terrorists foreign or domestic. We might also be hit by a humongous asteroid and spin off into space in trillions of rock showers thus ending any need to worry about anything. You could be hit by a bus tomorrow and spend the remainder of your days in a vegetative state receiving substandard, but free, medical care in a State institution.
Iran's request for yen saw the yen post it's biggest weekly gain in months. That's what friends are for. Japan will sell dollars to raise yen and there will be plenty of buyers. Japan imports about $10 billion in crude annually from Iran; approximately what you pay per month for war on Iraq. The world cannot afford a USD collapse; it would be a self-defeating course of action. The US dollar will collapse when Americans stop spending, either voluntarily or involuntarily. See the power you have?
USS Ships moving into and out of the Gulf is SOP. No one makes any money if ships are not maneuvering.
The terrorists are coming, the terrorists are coming, so-and-so said so. And? Do you not have your plastic sheeting and duct tape?
New tape with old Osama bin Dead long time. Proof that Hollywood writers and special FX really aren't that good, unless you're a 10-year-old addicted to Harry Potter.
Pols and their aides-de-camp are whores, and cheap whores at that (Bob Allen was arrested Wednesday after offering to perform oral sex for $20 on an undercover male police officer).
So ... no real news is good news. I think.
Posted by Kate-A at 9:12 AM
Saturday, July 14, 2007
Accusations this week claim the US military is kidnapping and murdering peace workers. Sounds bad. Another atrocity committed by US troops?
"The terrorist US forces kidnapped Abdelhussein Saddam, head of the Safety Force of the Iraq Freedom Congress after opening fire at him and his daughter on the 4th of July in Alattiba neighborhood in Baghdad. Two days after the abduction, his body was found in the Forensic Center in Yarmouk Hospital. The US force that committed this criminal act was a special unit who used special vehicles with the assistance of the Iraqi National Guards."
Another story states that " An IFC spokesman said the Iraqi police intentionally misled US forces, stating that the IFC was part of the sectarian Al-Mahdi Army that was planning to expand into the Al-Askary neighborhood, and therefore a terrorist organization."
Iraq Freedom Congress according to Wiki and IFC self-description, "... is a democratic, secularist, libertarian, progressive, and non-violent group. They oppose both the foreign military occupation and the sectarian violence, as well as Ba'athism, Islamism, and nationalism. The Congress was formed in March 2005 by members of groups including the Worker-Communist Party of Iraq, the Worker-Communist Party of Iran, the Federation of Workers Councils and Unions in Iraq, the Organization of Women's Freedom in Iraq, the Middle East Centre for Women's Rights, the Union of the Unemployed of Iraq, Japan's Movement for Democratic Socialism, and various other activists and university professors."
IFC has members from the Middle East region and around the world, including the US but I didn't find the numbers of how many are on the membership list. The group was co-founded and currently appears to be run by Samir Adil. There doesn't seem to be much bio on Adil other than his own statements. Adil "fled Iraq in 1995 after being tortured in Saddam's prisons, returned after the US invasion to help build a secular resistance movement." He resided in Canada until 2005 when he returned to Iraq. He does tour with other world peace activists, including our own Cindy Sheehan.
IFC's website has their manifesto which resembles a terse version of the communist manifesto; inclusive of one and all – as long as agreeing with the party line. The party line consists of religious freedom but demands "the IFC is to seize power and establish a provisional secular and non-ethnic government" after which they "Confiscate and repossess all the properties and estates belonging to religious foundations…"
Although claiming they are a peaceful civil resistance group supporting non-violence the website reads a tad belligerent. Regarding security the IFC states it "will endeavour to become the conduit for enabling people to defend themselves" i.e. arming the people, presumably against all sects, gangs, groups, militants, Islamic hardliners, and the occupying US forces.
IFC blames BushCo and Iraq's puppet government for shortages, rationing, cuts in basic necessities – yet calls for oil worker unions to strike as a non-violent means of resisting the imperialists and cutting the stream of income that supports the al-Maliki government (and oil worker salaries). US and international labor support and advise Iraq labor unions. A bit like the blind leading the blind as American union power has declined steadily for 40 years to make way for immigrant labor, NAFTA, DR-CAFTA, and the world according to Wal-mart.
Adil condemns the "terrorist US forces and occupiers", while said forces removal of Saddam was the catalyst for his return to Iraq. Adil is a middle-age man and should know that after spending all that blood and money the "liberators" aren't going to just pack up and go home without major financial rewards.
IFC is in solidarity with AFSC, a group I've long respected (even if Nixon was a Quaker). But who funds IFC? Solely fundraisers of international peace groups and website paypal donations? The website states membership is open to anyone who shares the aims of IFC and pays his/her subscription to join. Can the average Iraq afford membership? How does one know with any certainty that this group and Adil are not aiding the violent Iraqi factions against their common enemy – US troops?
The manifesto of the organization would be acceptable to only a tiny fraction of the Iraqi people : Communism, confiscating the wealth of religious foundations, women's liberation, encouraging teachers and oil workers to strike during critical levels of unemployment, arming people's militias, communal neighborhoods (basically tattletale cliques), a world of united little people.
We used to smoke pot and talk the same rhetoric on the Boulder campus way back when.
Am I to believe IFC is a peace group because it says it's a peace group and hangs around on the international corner with other peace groups? Do I look beyond IFC's bellicose language of seizing power and confiscating things, look beyond the possibility the organization could be part of the sectarian Al-Mahdi Army or other sect?
Should I believe progressive sites report more truthfully than conservative sites when both slant information to suit their agendas? Am I to trust foreign activists to be more transparent than the homegrown opposition managed by the powers that be (whether they know it or not)?
There are many things I loathe about the US government; many things I detest in US society, but in the end - are foreign organizations any more trustworthy than the homegrown who for decades have aided and abetted the new world order? Progressive jargonistas, with many chiefs but few in the ranks, jet-setting and soliciting the globe, lecturing 6 billion commoners on how to unite for peace and justice.
Posted by Kate-A at 11:58 AM
Friday, July 13, 2007
Obama, Clinton decry urban violence.
Reading this article, with the usual spin and political promises of giving hope and a better future, I noticed Obama : "… suggested that society isn't angry enough about urban violence. "You know, when the massacre happened at Virginia Tech, I think all of us were grief-stricken and rightfully so," Obama said. "We were shocked by the carnage. But in this year alone, in Chicago, we've had 34 Chicago Public School students gunned down and killed .... And for the most part, there has been silence."
I recalled a comment of my late grandmother-in-law. Raised in Chicago, during the era of Prohibition and the Great Depression, she remarked that often when walking down the streets of the Windy City they had to step over dead men.
Currently Chicago's homicide rates are the highest in the nation with offenders/victims in the 17-24 age group. The victims in Grandma's day were also young. Searching for FBI crime stats of homicide rates over the past century I found this 1910-1944 and this 1950-2004. Rates are per 100,000.
National homicide rates in grandma's era, approximately 1924 to 1936 were 8.1 to 8.0. Rates in 1933 and 1934 approached 10 per 100,000. After legalized liquor and WWII released testosterone the US murder rates dropped to 5.0 in 1944.
In the 1950 to 1964 era, when the shared profits of the popular WWII helped create suburbia, the homicide rates remained in the 4.0 to 4.9 range. Rates began to climb again in 1965 and reached a high of 10.2 in 1980, then began very slowly to drop again.
In 2004 the homicide rate per 100,000 stood at 5.5. So … America has been much more violent in past eras. Obama, plays up the race issue of this, Black on Black crime etc., but is it anymore prevalent than white on white crime or is it just another meme? Murder is usually committed by people who know one another. Believe it or not, America has always had violent inner city gangs, of all races, creeds, and color.
Obama suggests we need to be more pissed off to curb urban violence, although homicide rates per 100,000 are 1/2 what they were 25 years ago and grandma isn't stepping over dead men. Politicians! wish they would stop speechifying to the masses and say something worth listening to.
Posted by Kate-A at 1:14 AM
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Gen. William E. Ward, the Army’s only black four-star general, was chosen to lead the Pentagon’s new Africa Command. General Ward, 58, now deputy commander of the European Command, will take over a command established to work with African countries to strengthen their governments and militaries and make them less vulnerable to terrorists. Initially, the command will be run through the European Command in Stuttgart, Germany, but is expected to become an independent unit by the end of September 2008.
---- The African Command is a move to coordinate U.S. offense policy for the continent and provide a single military organization for agencies like the State Department and the CIA to work with in the region. And of course TPTB will initially put a Black face on the boss. Does Ward look a bit like Mugabe?
(Reminds me of the Anglo logic here in the heartland where still, in discussing slavery, Jim and Bob, without fail, will include the assertion that native Africans sold Blacks to slave traders so don't blame white people for slavery. Yep, Bubba, it was those Black folks selling Black folks that led Anglos to believe slavery was okay. White folks just feel better about atrocity when they have been "tricked into it" by the very folks who are recipients of the atrocities.)
General "Kip" Ward did so well with his Euro/Bosnia command that in 2005 he was appointed "senior security coordinator" to help train and equip Palestinian forces and monitor Israeli and Palestinian promises to suspend military actions against each other. That went so well that in July 2006 Kip was promoted to the fifth Black 4-star general in U.S. Army history, and currently the only one.
Before that fourth star General Ward, in March 2000 said - "I stand in front of these parades and watch soldiers march by -- and I look at the ranks, and I look at the leadership," Ward told conference attendees. "And the picture that I see is not one that gives me a lot of hope for what lies in the future."
He was not inferring that military leadership is hopelessly criminal but that we need more ROTC for Black folks as the Anglo empire moves to finish off the Motherland.
Will Kip some day soon speak of the terrorist threat certain African nations pose to the civilized world in what the military calls "the long war"?
Wonder which corporate boards Kip will sit on.
Posted by Kate-A at 11:16 AM
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — A massive marijuana garden — 61,000 plants worth nearly $200 million — was discovered in a remote area along the border of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.
Three Mexicans were arrested and plants up to 8-feet-tall were uprooted after discovery of the pot garden east of Twitchell Reservoir near Highway 166, Sgt. Erik Raney said.
Santa Barbara County deputies flying a routine patrol by helicopter discovered the marijuana farm on July 6 and deputies, along with San Luis Obispo County authorities, moved in for the bust, the sergeant said.
On July 8, three illegal immigrants were arrested, including two who had previously been deported and may face additional felony charges for illegal re-entry into the U.S.
"The plants were located in nine separate grows within a short distance of the riverbed," Raney said. "Water from the river was used in an elaborate system of gravity-fed irrigation."
Posted by Kate-A at 11:59 AM
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
WaPo : Who Runs the CIA? Outsiders for Hire.
If you've read the above piece in the Washington Post you might believe a "mammoth" private spying industry" all but runs U.S. intelligence operations today.
According to RJ Hillhouse in WaPo : "Over the past five years (some say almost a decade), there has been a revolution in the intelligence community toward wide-scale outsourcing. Private companies now perform key intelligence-agency functions, to the tune, I'm told, of more than $42 billion a year. Intelligence professionals tell me that more than 50 percent of the National Clandestine Service (NCS) -- the heart, brains and soul of the CIA -- has been outsourced to private firms such as Abraxas, Booz Allen Hamilton, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon."
Now, is this supposed to be new or news? That big business runs the CIA ? Excuse me, but Big Business founded CIA officially back when Frankie Roosevelt appointed the first Coordinator of Information - Wild Bill Donovan - war hero and powerful Wall Street lawyer (also classmate of Roosevelt).
NCS is new – created after 9/11/01, thanks to a bill from U.S. Senator C. Patrick Roberts, to coordinate HUMINT (human intel). As far back as, well even to Hitler, business folks have been a good source of humint.
Henry Ford, Lindbergh, Bush grandpappy, William Randolph Hearst, Joseph Kennedy, John Rockefeller, Andrew Mellon (head of Alcoa, banker, and Secretary of Treasury), DuPont, General Motors, Standard Oil (now Exxon), Ford, ITT, Allen Dulles (later head of the CIA), National City Bank, and General Electric – all friendly with fascism and humint.
Why, just look at Brewster & Jennings businesswoman, Ms. Valerie Plame. If real businessmen aren't gathering the intel – CIA creates their own businessmen and women.
Ever wonder why so many high level CIA are from big business and return to big business after their job stints in the Company?
You think the overthrow of Jacob Arbenz in Guatemala was an original CIA idea or United Fruit with suits on the ground in Guatemala City?
You think Big Business/CIA were not backing both Castro and Batista in that revolution because Anglo business thugs thought they would get a better deal if Castro's revolutionaries got rid of a greedy Batista and if not Batista would be humbled at coming so close to losing his American protectors?
You think ITT board member and ex-CIA director John McCone didn't promise Henry Kissinger $1 million to support CIA action in preventing Allende from taking office in Chile? Or that David Rockefeller's business group wanted to protect copper mining and feared Allende would nationalize mining and utilities?
You think Vietnam was fought because CIA humint came back stating communism was a dire threat?
You think the Nicaragua/Contra war was again about commies at our backdoor? Or big business losing another chunk of the latin plantation? Lots of big business hired intel running around Danli and El Paraiso back then too, although may pose as school marms and volunteers of all sorts or nuns and priests.
And Panama. To catch a drug dealer or dump one greedy little overseer to install a new government (board of directors) for that lucrative little slice of the Latin American pie.
You think Smedley Butler was bullshitting about high class muscle pay for Big Business and Wall Street? A businessman in military uniform.
I could be wrong but it appears Ms. Hillhouse feels, in her own words, that "The private spy industry has succeeded where no foreign government has: It has penetrated the CIA and is running the show."
Heeheeheehee. Private spy industry has penetrated CIA and running the show. Hon, my daddy could have told you that 50 years ago. Well, actually he would have said Big Business birthed CIA, for home and abroad.
And ya know, since today Big Business is multinational and global who can say that no "foreign government" is not running the show?
Posted by Kate-A at 6:56 PM
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Does Universal Health Care Have a Chance? :
ABC News' Dr. Tim Johnson Calls the Kennedy-Dingell Plan 'Bold' and 'Politically Brilliant'
Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., have introduced a new plan for universal health care coverage that would give every American access to health care within five years.
The plan tackles the problem of the more than 46 million uninsured Americans by giving the uninsured a choice to use Medicare or the federal employees' health plan.
Everyone with a social security number would be covered for their entire lives under this plan. People could also choose to stick with their employer's health plan.
The Kennedy-Dingell plan would be largely publicly financed by taxing payrolls.
"It turns out that's a much more effective way to collect money," Johnson said.
"For example, most companies spend 13 percent of all their payroll costs buying their employees health insurance. Under this system, the companies would pay a new 7 percent payroll tax. Health care costs for employers should be cut nearly in half, and the government will still have enough money to finance the new plan because of efficiencies and savings."
Companies that don't provide health insurance would have to start paying into the pool with the 7 percent payroll tax. Johnson said the costs will be cheaper overall because the risks will be spread out over the entire population.
Critics of the plan call it socialized medicine run by the government.
---------- My problem with government running anything is the anything always becomes a higher-cost yoke around the neck of Joe Blow.
When the media hypes anything as being of "crisis" proportion I'm skeptical. Personally, knowing folks from every income bracket all my life I have yet to know one person who was unable to access affordable healthcare. Whether through Medicaid, Medicare, free clinics, sliding scale income clinics, private or employer insurance, indigent programs, or the government picking up the tab for the poorest.
Years ago, in the late '70s, hubby's employer provided family plan health insurance at $36 per month. Using the inflation calculator that would cost us $77 in today's dollars. The plan also included vision and dental. In 1982 our 2 y/o daughter was diagnosed with brain cancer. Her medical bills were 6 figures and our portion of the cost was 0, zero. The plan covered 100 percent of catastrophic illness/accident for all employees, hourly and salaried. The same company today provides 75 percent coverage at 5 times the monthly premium. (This corporation profits best during war so bottom line doing better today than in the '80s.)
During the '80s and '90s worker benefits were cut simply for greed, for shareholders, for dividends, profit margins. Unions were busted and employers cut benefits; healthcare, vacation time, wages. The Reagan/Clinton era of outsourcing, off-shoring, downsizing. Obscene perks and benefits were and still are awarded to cost-cutting CEOs & management who can cut Joe Blow the deepest.
Maybe corporate America didn't mind providing as people were healthier a few decades ago – before junk food, fast food, and tranquilized couch potato bodies became epidemic. On the horizon now are aging baby boomers and their spoiled offspring who need care after decades of dyed grease and sugar Mc-Life. The medical care costs are going to be huge. If wage earners think their payroll taxes are high now – just wait as more of the generation of gluttony incurs major medical expenses. Americans today also run for pharma-attention with every sniffle, sneeze, headache, and bad mood. Can I have that purple pill I saw on TV for acid reflux because I eat like a pig and never exercise? Never mind that the cure is lifestyle changes and a spoonful of apple cider vinegar.
According to Wikipedia (links to references) : "... most Americans, 59.5%, receive their health insurance coverage through an employer, and about 9% purchase it directly from the market. Government sources cover 27.3% of the population (80.2 million). In 2005, there were 46.6 million people in the U.S. (15.9% of the population) who were without health insurance for at least part of that year. Among the uninsured, nearly 37 million were employment-age adults (ages 18 to 64), and more than 26 million worked at least part time. Approximately a quarter of the uninsured live in households with an income over $50,000. It is estimated that nearly one fifth of the uninsured population is able to afford insurance, almost one quarter is eligible for public coverage, and that the remaining 56% need financial assistance (8.9% of all Americans)."
Let's see, 8.9 percent of all Americans needing healthcare coverage assistance is roughly 26 million. Surely these 26M are scattered across all 50 states. Wouldn't it be best if individual states provided that coverage without Federal BigDaddy?
As the Kennedy/Dingell plan above states "companies would pay a new 7 percent payroll tax … health care costs for employers should be cut nearly in half … "
So who will really benefit from universal healthcare? Is there a crisis in healthcare or does Big Business, Big Pharma and AMA want more profit at less expense?
Kinda smells like another way for the corporatocracy to cut costs and let Joe Blow pick up the whole tab at some point.
As the man says … "the costs will be cheaper overall because the risks will be spread out over the entire population." Population means worker/you, spread out to cover the costs. And I see a red flag when Wal-Mart, initially "acting" against universal health care, is now supporting it.
Posted by Kate-A at 12:15 PM
The United States is the only country where employees have no statutory leave, and they get about half as much time off in reality as Europeans get, according to the report, compiled by the Washington-based Centre for Economic Policy Research.
"The United States is in a class of its own," the report says. "It is the no-vacation nation."
Andrew Watt, an economist at the Brussels-based European Trade Union Institute, said the report not only highlighted a conscious decision to ensure more free time in Europe. It also showed the errors many economists make when saying U.S. productivity and economic output is better than Europe's.
Canada and Japan, which require employers to give at least 10 days paid leave to their staff, are less generous than the Europeans, who get at least four weeks by law and often much more in practice, the report said.
In the United States, leave was generally harder to secure for people in low-pay and part-time jobs, it added.
Posted by Kate-A at 9:04 AM
The San Francisco technical writer was making close to $100,000 a year. He didn't know exactly how big of a pay cut he would need to fall below the federal tax threshold, but later figured out he would have to make less than minimum wage.
His employer turned him down and he quit. Gross, 38, now works on a contract basis, and last year he refused to pay self-employment taxes.
War tax resistance, popularized by Henry David Thoreau in the 19th Century and by singer Joan Baez and others during the Vietnam War, is gaining renewed interest among some activists.
"Clearly this year we definitely had more people calling, sending e-mails about how they decided to start resisting," said Ruth Benn, coordinator of the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee in New York.
Based on the committee's mailing list and reports from numerous groups it works with around the country, Benn estimates 8,000 to 10,000 Americans refuse to pay some or all of their federal taxes over war objections.
Internal Revenue Service officials say they don't have figures for that specific category, but earlier this year they reported an overall non-compliance rate of 16.3 percent and estimated the annual tax gap at about $345 billion.
Peace activists are considering a mass tax-resistance campaign next April to step up pressure to end the war in Iraq, Benn said.
Posted by Kate-A at 8:53 AM
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
Call Out The Instigator. By Cindy Sheehan
(This is more like Bring Back The Tranquilizer.)
CINDY: I’m not backing off. I tried to remove myself from the political realm of the US, what BushCo is turning into an Evil Empire, but the blatant audacity of George commuting Scooter’s sentence (he’s not ruling out a full pardon —and you know he will) has dragged me kicking and screaming back in. I can’t sit back and let this BushCo drag our country further down into the murky quagmire of Fascism and violence, taking the rest of the world with them!
--- Oh yes, dragged kicking and screaming, like the time or two you were arrested. No wait, you were carried out smiling then. Kicking and screaming, kicking and screaming ... takes a Scooter Commuter. Each to their own outrage I guess.
CINDY: The recent commutation of I. Scooter Libby’s sentence, however, was the straw that broke my camel’s back of exhausted ennui. Patrick Fitzgerald is a thoughtful and thorough prosecutor who did a heroic job of bringing at least one of the Bush Crime Mob to justice. Even though we were all very pleased, we knew that it was not enough and that Mr. Fitzgerald would delve deeper into the feces infested executive branch.
---- Oh please, heeheehee, who writes your material? Pat Fitzmas is as shit infested as the rest of BushCo. The wasted tax money and years of phony "outrage" over Plame/Libby and The Outing comes to no more than a warm spotlight for Libby accompanied by a commuted sentence because – drum roll please – they're all - you think - on the same team!? But … they made ya look! ... at nothing.
CINDY: A very dear friend of mine, Rev. Lennox Yearwood of the Hip Hop Caucus, is being harassed by the Air Force for “Conduct Unbecoming an Officer and a Gentleman” because “The Rev” fulfills his duty as an Officer and a Gentleman honorably by protesting Iraq and the Fascist Bush Regime almost constantly. The Rev is still in Individual Ready Reserve so the Air Force believes it is within its parameters to pursue the charges, although every “Officer and Gentleman(woman)” should be protesting the atrocious mistakes in the Middle East. After The Rev’s hearing on July 12th, (in Macon, GA) he is going to begin a “symbolic” walk from the Reverend Martin Luther King’s grave (Atlanta, GA) to DC — I am going to be there for him and to begin the march, but I am not going to make it symbolic.
--- Would someone explain to me what she's talking about with "... I am not going to make it symbolic"? Or is that just a line the blue pencil edit missed?
CINDY: We are going to walk from Atlanta, GA to Congress beginning July 13th and ending up in DC on July 23rd to send the mis-leaders back home to face the music of justice in their own districts.
---Huh? BushCo and other mis-leaders will face musical justice back home. How? By whom? By the same folks who just elected them? Too bad ya didn't camp out kicking and screaming at Kennebunkport and piss off the real ruling honcho Poppy Bush.
CINDY: If Congress won’t dig BushCo’s political grave, it is the People’s job to do so. Thomas Jefferson said that we need a Revolution every 20 years, or so, to keep our Republic honest. Over 225 years have passed since our last Revolution (if you don’t count the War Between the States) and we are long overdue for one. Turn off your TVs, kiss your pets goodbye, bring the kids and flock to the federal seat of corruption, or join us on our walk there, for a People’s Accountability Movement to be in the face of the Criminal BushCo and the Complicit Congress for the last week of session before they go on their undeserved vacations (why do they get vacations when the Iraqi parliamentarians don’t?)
CINDY: On the eve of our first revolution: You know it’s right!
--- You know it's useless. Unless many millions of angry peasants, literally armed with pitchforks and a new peoples constitution, face off BushCo and a Complicit Congress - marching will accomplish nothing. And remember, "they" have the robo-suited troops to smack a few skulls as the bosses head undisturbed for their undeserved vacations.
This is not your daddy's revolution. This is not the '60s. You don't have the college crowds behind you this time because no draft is forcing them into service. You don't have the stoners and flower power. You do not have the military, retired or active duty. Hell, there isn't even good music coming out of this "revolution." You have millions of new and first generation immigrants just happier than shit to be here and not rocking any warboat. And you definitely don't have an angry Black mass joining the "revolution" because overall white folks haven't been too bothered by Black concerns - ghettos, inadequate education, indecent housing, chronic unemployment, and constant police brutality - for the past 40 years. And now you want us to join up to save the camel's back and suburban lifestyle – oh excuse me – save Iraqis and American soldiers. Stop atrocities abroad as opposed to those at home.
Revolution : overthrowing and substituting one ruler or government for another.
Cindy says 225 years since we've had a revolution, "if you don't count the War between the States"… ya, probably best not to say "civil war".
Civil war : war between opposing groups of citizens of the same country. Like the peasants versus the ruling class.
So come on, we know Cindy and Rev. Yearwood are not talking revolution or civil war by any definition. Nor can they seriously think they will dig Bush's political grave. Throw out BushCo and most of congress and you'd still have the same corrupted globocorporate politics. New faces, same feces.
Posted by Kate-A at 10:27 PM
Oprah Winfrey was criticized for supporting Israel:
The Joint Advocacy Initiative, a partnership between the East Jerusalem YMCA and the YWCA of Palestine, said in a June 8 letter that Winfrey’s willingness to visit Israel was "very shocking" considering her image as someone who “stands with oppressed, marginalized people, fights racism, and works for justice and human rights.”
The letter was apparently a response to the talk show host’s declaration last month that she sympathized with the suffering of Israelis and would accept an invitation from Elie Wiesel to visit the Jewish state.
--- Did I suffer a brain cloud? As I certainly do not associate Oprah with fighting for the oppressed, the marginalized, or for justice. She's not exactly the idea of Che lives compañero!
But, they did say "her image" image, yep her image as … the great and powerful Wizard of Op, come back tomorrow you ungrateful creatures … pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.
The Oprah Israel pilgrimage has prompted an online petition pleading with Oprah to also visit Palestine and seek truth. Uh-oh – remember who runs Hollywood and big media folks. It ain't Palestinians or Arabs. Suggesting that Oprah support the truth, as in "Israel is blatantly carrying out a massive genocide" would end Winfrey's career faster than you can say Fatty Arbuckle and a broken coke bottle.
Oprah "sides" with whomever and whatever her advisors and handlers tell her to. Media moguls made her and media moguls can taketh her away. She has money but no power – other than to ratchet up selected authors book sales, weep with her fans over emotional general interest stories, and plug products such as the age-defying secrets of Thermage. She doesn't build dreams – she builds sales volume and immortal publicity for Oprah.
She does not lose sleep over Israel or Palestine or Afghanistan or Iraq. She may lose sleep over ratings, or being denied entrance into the Hermes store in Paris afterhours. She may lose a few minutes sleep wrestling with which accessory item is an O magazine must-have handbag or which is her favorite summer find - is it the Land’s End Zip Top Tote or Havaianas rubber flip-flops for the beach?
She's the new millenium's Dear Abby or Ann Landers, pushing advice on life, love, and the universe with her only credentials being she knows how to diet, she never married, she never raised a child and she miraculously went from the homely mediocre talent of Sophie in the Color Purple to the thinner, few shades lighter and a little plastic tweaking goddess of daytime television.
She is a vain, petty, self-centered guru for empty-headed fans who star worship at the feet of O. She's the greasy-palm traveling preacher selling hope, healing, life, and eternal love while soliciting sales at the altar of Op Rah, God of Marketing.
You best stop believing assistance will come from forced-on-the-public personalities who are manufactured on the couches of Hollywood & Big Business. Said personalities spend their days getting in and out of hair and makeup, going over wardrobes, and discussing what photo-op or pubic maneuver is next on the agenda. Sort of like politicians. You have to hit their wallets – real hard - to get any attention.
Posted by Kate-A at 6:55 PM
New NSA Whistleblower Speaks:
A former member of US military intelligence has decided to reveal what she knows about warrantless spying on Americans and about the fixing of intelligence in the leadup to the invasion of Iraq.
Adrienne Kinne describes an incident just prior to the invasion of Iraq in which a fax came into her office at Fort Gordon in Georgia that purported to provide information on the location of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. The fax came from the Iraqi National Congress, a group opposed to Saddam Hussein and favoring an invasion. The fax contained types of information that required that it be translated and transmitted to President Bush within 15 minutes. But Kinne had been eavesdropping on two nongovernmental aid workers driving in Iraq who were panicked and trying to find safety before the bombs dropped. She focused on trying to protect them, and was reprimanded for the delay in translating the fax. She then challenged her officer in charge, Warrant Officer John Berry, on the credibility of the fax, and he told her that it was not her place or his to challenge such things. None of the other 20 or so people in the unit questioned anything, Kinne said.
Kinne says that post-9/11 she and others routinely collected information on people, even after identifying them as aid workers for non-governmental organizations. A common rationale was that the phones of such organizations could conceivably be seized by terrorists. She recalled one case in which she was listening to an American talk to his British colleague in an international aid organization. The Brit expressed concern about the American military eavesdropping, and the American replied that they couldn't possibly be doing that because of USSID 18. Kinne recalls that her colleagues got quite excited and behaved as if the American had divulged secrets by mentioning that directive. They continued eavesdropping on the man, although they were unclear at that point whether they were permitted to spy on Americans.
Shortly after this incident, however, in mid-2002, they were given a waiver to spy on Americans. This waiver was communicated to Kinne and her colleagues orally, and she assumed that it had come from the president or someone very high up. The waiver, she says, also permitted spying on Canadian, French, German, Australian and British citizens without probable cause.
Many of the people, including Americans, whom Kinne spied on were journalists.
--- If this lady is the real deal and the source of this story – she will find herself in jail. She has divulged too much. On the other hand, if she isn't charged it makes me go hmmmmmm … wonder why not.
Posted by Kate-A at 3:17 PM