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And, yes, I DO take it personally: 11/18/2007 - 11/25/2007
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And, yes, I DO take it personally

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Full moon through high, thin overcast, 24 November

6:19 p.m., PST

6:52 p.m., PST

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Kasparov Jailed for 5 Days, only?

time to sound off

we must protect this player even at great cost. Having won the world chess championship in the past, Garry Kasparov now belongs to the world. Period.

for more information as events develop, here.

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U.S. inter-city bus transportation - a business proposition

how would you like it if the u.s. had inter-city bus transportation like argentina's...?

from a post i put up back in september 2005...

argentina is the 8th largest country in the world, encompassing 2,766,890 km²... the u.s. is the world's 3d largest country after russia and canada with 9,161,930 km², or 7,415,765 km² if you subtract hawaii's 28,311 km² and alaska's 1,717,854 km²... no matter how you look at it, argentina's a BIG country and people have to travel great distances to get from one place to another, just like the u.s... but let's take a look at how THEY travel by bus as compared to the piss-poor commercial service in the u.s... (some of you know this already but i'm sure a lot of you don't...)

first of all, take a look at the the busses themselves...


new, modern, double-decker, well-maintained, clean...

many of the lines on the busy inter-city routes and the long distance routes offer four classes of service - Servicio Común (standard seat), Servicio Cama (the seat fully reclines into a bed), Servicio Semi Cama (the seat reclines but not fully), and Servicio Primera Clase (the seat not only reclines into a bed but you have full entertainment and meal service and your own private area, equivalent to international first class air travel)... take a look...


not bad, eh...?

and that ain't all... how about dvd with a high-res, flat-panel screen...? how about wine and well-prepared meals, SERVED to you by attendants...?


but, WAIT...! there's MORE...! you can actually go online and CHOOSE YOUR SEAT, just like the airlines...


and, no shit, they actually show you where you'll be sitting in relation to the tv monitors and the restroom...! amazing or what...?

so, why do we in the united states put up with THIS crap...?

Serious discomfort

Primitive equipment

so, here's the deal... i want to start up a bus line that offers an honest-to-god, decent travel EXPERIENCE... it would have to start small, like one double-decker bus (see above) and one route... two classes of service would be offered, equivalent to the argentina Servicio Común (standard seat) and the Servicio Semi Cama (the seat reclines but not fully) as described above, with audio and video entertainment, and attendants, one above and one below, who serve complimentary snacks and beverages... if the route was picked carefully to insure maximum traffic and the advance advertising and publicity was done right, i predict smashing success, at which time the service could be expanded... i think the time is right and i think people are ready, particularly with the increasing hassles and expense of airline travel and the price of gasoline which is only going to continue to climb...

what say you...? nothing ventured, etc... you can email me here...

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Holy crap! Bush has NEVER visited Israel?

lordy, lordy... this little piece of presidential worthlessness totally slipped by me...
When the Middle East peace conference kicks off Tuesday in Annapolis, President Bush will deliver the opening speech and also conduct three rounds of personal diplomacy with Israeli and Palestinian leaders. Such an active role is notable for a president who has never visited Israel while in office, who has made only one trip to Egypt and Jordan to promote peace efforts, and who has left the task of relaunching the peace process largely in the hands of his secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice.

besides being a fundamentally bad man, he is also a seriously bad joke...

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The Bush economic policy - delusion, denial, and outright lies (but everybody's STILL out shopping)

from the la times...
It's the holidays. You do what you have to do.

You could almost run that old Lone Ranger theme -- the famous William Tell Overture -- as the soundtrack to the local news stories I watched here in Boston on Thanksgiving day featuring perky local news "correspondents" stirring a buying frenzy with upbeat reports on manic consumers racing into malls for "midnight madness" sales.


[O]ur media is deeply complicit in promoting and encouraging mindless consumerism through newspapers, commercials and newscasts. This is a well-practiced formula mirroring TV's promotion of the war in Iraq, as the line between selling and telling disappears. Media outlets are amply rewarded with endless ad revenues hyping all the discounted goodies you can get, with the Boston Globe packing no less than 43 advertising-sales supplements (down from 47 a year ago) into a paper that had wall-to-wall Macys ads, including some offering $10 coupons to bribe you the stores.

I’ve been visiting some of the people who have been most affected by the subprime mortgage debacle. It’s a largely bewildered, frightened group that includes people like Dorothy Levey, a 79-year-old widow who sits alone inside the small house she has lived in for 41 years, afraid to answer the telephone or the door.

She has every reason to be worried. The monthly note on her house in the city of Markham, just outside Chicago, is approximately 100 percent of her meager monthly income. Broke and behind in her payments, Ms. Levey expects a foreclosure notice to show up any day, followed by a visit from “the sheriff, or whoever they send to tell you to get out of your own home.”

While the media coverage has focused on the high rollers who created the subprime frenzy (“If you can breathe, we’ll give you a loan”), the hapless victims have remained in the shadows, condemned to economic ruin.

After faithfully making mortgage payments for decades, Ms. Levey and her husband, Dan, were persuaded to take out a new loan, ostensibly for debt consolidation, in 2002. It was like plunging into quicksand. Dan was seriously ill at the time and he died two years later.

To this day Ms. Levey does not understand what she and her husband of more than half a century had agreed to. The terms might as well have been written in Sanskrit.

But she kept trying to meet her obligation. She exhausted her savings. She lost her car. She stopped buying clothes and cut back on food. But there was no way to keep up with the payments.

“I had to go to the state and tell them I was hungry,” she said.

We are a country obsessed with consumption, which would be fine if we seemed to be fulfilled getting bigger TVs but having less time to watch them. But, in the aggregate, that's not the case. "The things that we get used to most easily and then take for granted are our material possessions -- our car, our house," writes Layard. "But there is lots of evidence that people underestimate the process of habituation." The amount of happiness we think we'll get from a new house, and the amount of happiness we actually get from a new house, are not the same.

So why the ceaseless search for stuff? In a word, competition. It's worth it to stay ahead in the rat race. Researchers have asked people which they'd prefer: a world in which they made $50,000 but everyone else made half that; or one in which they made $100,000 and everyone else made twice that (prices are the same in both worlds). The majority preferred the first world. They would happily make less money, as long as everyone else made even less money.

yeah, yeah, yeah... so, what time did YOU have to get up yesterday to be among the first in line at the store...?

Sitting on the hard asphalt since 3:30 a.m.,
Lidia Marin of Santa Ana checks in with relatives
in front of Fry's Electronics in Fountain Valley [CA]

but at least SOME of the headlines strike a cautious note...

Crowds pack stores, but will the buying continue?

The Holiday's Shopping Season Can't Stop the Coming 'Severe Recession'

Lost in a Flood of Debt

Despite economy, malls and stores jammed

odd as it may seem, not a single one of those articles mentioned the collapse of the dollar... not one... for THAT story, you have to read the foreign press, such as this from süddeutsche zeitung via spiegel...
[T]he fall of the US currency has political and economic implications far beyond the present financial market crisis. Until recently, American politicians could nod along with Nixon-era Treasury Secretary John Connally, who said 'The dollar is our currency, but your problem.' ... This summer, that changed. Many investors fear a recession in America, and, even more importantly, they doubt their money is really well taken care of in the hands of the world's superpower.

meanwhile, back in california...
"I really can't afford this TV -- I'll be making monthly payments on my credit card until this time next year," the 19-year-old Laguna Niguel resident said. "But it's the holidays. You do what you have to do."

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"Bush has destroyed half a century of good will among NATO allies"

juan cole reflects on not counting 20,000 brain-injured iraq troops as casualties and the destruction of u.s. credibility in the foreign policy arena...
Whoever is responsible for this disgusting travesty is an automatic candidate for Keith Olbermann's "Worst Person in the World." My guess is that the trail will lead back to Donald "its not a guerrilla war" Rumsfeld and Richard Bruce "most prominent traitor in American history" Cheney. Gregg Zoroya of USA Today reports that 20,000 US troops who served in Iraq and Afghanistan and suffered brain injuries were never classified as wounded by the Pentagon and are not included in the official statistics for the wounded issued by the Department of Defense. Although some of the under-reporting of this condition could be inadvertent, the scale of it strongly suggests an underlying policy.

Former Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien says that it was among the great victories in his life that he stood against US pressure to join in the Iraq War.

Uh, the purpose of a wise and mature US foreign policy is to avoid close allies ending up speaking like that. Bush has destroyed half a century of good will among NATO allies, most of whom now think they are better off not following Washington's lead. Leaders who threw in with Bush, like Aznar of Spain and Berlusconi of Italy, have been ushered off the political stage by enraged publics. As someone who grew up when the US (and its currency) was respected by most Europeans and other North Americans, I am sad to see the way W. has debased our position and humiliated our country.

the full quote from professor cole that headlines this post is, "Bush has destroyed half a century of good will among NATO allies, most of whom now think they are better off not following Washington's lead..." i don't think that's necessarily a bad thing... the u.s. sorely needs more countries who are willing to chart their own course and exert their influence on US for a change... our massive arrogance balloon is way overdue for a pricking...

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Friday, November 23, 2007

Punishing the people of Gaza is taking a tremendous toll

Municipality of Gaza

when are we going to stand up and stop state-sponsored terrorism...?

from the palestinian international campaign to end the siege on gaza...

Ameer Shaher Yazgi, 9 years old, died today due to lack of medical drugs in Gaza. Attemps to admit Ameer to Israeli hospital failed due to the Israeli siege on Gaza


- 14 victim .. Is the death toll among patients due to lack of medical drugs Or were prevented from leaving Gaza for medical treatment Due to the Israeli siege

-- 670 student ... Are prevented from leaving Gaza to their universities Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- ZERO .. Is the stock balance of 60 blood bank supplies and lab materials at the Ministry of Health in Gaza due to the Israeli siege

-- 100 Million USD .. Is the estimated losses of the agricultural season of 2007-2008 in Gaza due to the Israeli siege

-- 14 million USD .. Is the current losses in the Strawberry and Carnations products in Gaza Due to the Israeli siege

-- 80% of Agricultural Corps .. Will be damaged due to lack of pesticides, medicines, fertilizers, and greenhouse materials due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 40 thousand worker .. in the agricultural sector will lose their jobs due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 25 thousand tons .. Of Potato and Vegetables are prevented from being exported Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 160 million USD .. Are the current losses of Construction sector because no raw materials are allowed into Gaza

-- 100% .. Of factories of construction accessories stopped Due to the lack of raw materials allowed into Gaza

-- 20 million USD .. Are the current losses of the textile sector Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 600 textile factory .. Closed their doors totally due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 25 thousand workers .. Lost their jobs in the textile sector due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 90% .. Is the decline percentage of production of furniture factories due to lack of raw materials due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 12 million USD .. Is the current losses of the furniture factories due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 6,000 worker .. Lost their jobs in the furniture factories in Gaza Due to the Israeli siege

-- 95% .. Of metal and engineering factories closed their doors Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 700 worker .. Lost their jobs in the engineering and metal factories Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 25 million USD .. Are the current losses of the trade sector Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 39 tourist company.. Are about to close their doors due to closure of borders

-- ZERO .. Is the accommodation percentage in Gaza hotels Due to the Israeli siege

-- ALL .. Light drinks factories in Gaza stopped their activities Due to the Israeli siege

-- 900 worker .. Lost their job in the light drinks factories Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 30% .. Is the current production capacity of the food factories in Gaza Due to the Israeli siege

-- 45 factory .. Closed their doors in Gaza Industrial Zone Due to the Israeli siege

-- 30% .. Of owners of factories in the Industrial Zone began procedures to leave Gaza

-- 90% .. of the trade shipping sector is totally stopped Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 450 driver and 1000 worker .. Lost their jobs in the trade shipping sector Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

-- 120 thousand worker .. Lost their jobs inside the green line Due to the Israeli siege on Gaza

Eyes of A Souljah - Palestine Nasheed Hip/Hop

you can view and sign a petition here...

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The Temples of Darmanhur

seriously, one of the most amazing things i've ever run across...
Nestling in the foothills of the Alps in northern Italy, 30 miles from the ancient city of Turin, lies the valley of Valchiusella. Peppered with medieval villages, the hillside scenery is certainly picturesque.


100ft down and hidden from public view, lies an astonishing secret - one that has drawn comparisons with the fabled city of Atlantis and has been dubbed 'the Eighth Wonder of the World' by the Italian government.

For weaving their way underneath the hillside are nine ornate temples, on five levels, whose scale and opulence take the breath away.

Constructed like a three-dimensional book, narrating the history of humanity, they are linked by hundreds of metres of richly decorated tunnels and occupy almost 300,000 cubic feet - Big Ben is 15,000 cubic feet.

Hall of the Earth

The giant glass dome of The Hall of Mirrors
[T]he 'Temples of Damanhur' are not the great legacy of some long-lost civilisation, they are the work of a 57-year-old former insurance broker from northern Italy who, inspired by a childhood vision, began digging into the rock.

It all began in the early Sixties when Oberto Airaudi was aged ten. From an early age, he claims to have experienced visions of what he believed to be a past life, in which there were amazing temples.

Around these he dreamed there lived a highly evolved community who enjoyed an idyllic existence in which all the people worked for the common good.

More bizarrely still, Oberto appeared to have had a supernatural ability: the gift of "remote viewing" - the ability to travel in his mind's eye to describe in detail the contents of any building.

"My goal was to recreate the temples from my visions," he says.


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The Iraq propaganda machine is running at top speed

the media is pulling out all the stops portraying iraq as now snatching victory from the jaws of defeat...

scotty's giving it everything he's got...

Cap’n... she canna take any more. She’s gonna blow!

check it out...
Iraqis are returning to their homeland by the hundreds each day, by bus, car and plane, encouraged by weeks of decreased violence and increased security, or compelled by visa and residency restrictions in neighboring countries and the depletion of their savings.

but wait...! we've learned the hard way that, for every media story that labors to convince us that something is true, there MUST be a hidden story somewhere, something they're NOT telling us, something that is usually the polar opposite of the story that's being pushed... and, by golly, who better to dig up the anti-story than robert parry...
While U.S. generals in Iraq have stressed the gentler aspects of their latest "surge" successes – and the American press has gone along by publishing front-page articles about new signs of normalcy in Baghdad – the darker side of the counterinsurgency has generally been shoved into brief stories deep inside the newspapers.


The harsh repression surrounding the “surge” has drawn far less U.S. press attention. The grim reality, however, is that an increasingly desperate American military has stepped up its indiscriminate killing and jailing of Iraqis, especially “military-age males” or MAMS.


Other tidbits of troubling information – which often end up below the fold on the inside pages of newspapers – reveal how Iraq steadily has been transformed into a more efficient police state than dictator Saddam Hussein could have ever imagined.


During a summer 2007 trip to Iraq, Anthony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies was briefed on U.S. plans to dramatically expand the number of Iraqis in American detention by the end of 2008. “The detainees have risen to over 18,000 and are projected to hit 30,000 (by the U.S. command) by the end of the year and 50,000 by the end of 2008,” Cordesman wrote in his trip report, adding that the vast majority were Sunnis. “Shiite detainees are often freed while Sunnis are warehoused,” he wrote.


The troubling picture is that the U.S. chain of command, presumably up to President Bush, has authorized “rules of engagement” that allow targeted killings – as well as other objectionable tactics including arbitrary arrests, “enhanced interrogations,” kidnappings of suspects in third countries with “extraordinary renditions” to countries that torture, secret CIA prisons, and “reeducation camps” for younger detainees.


In effect, Bush’s “global war on terror” appears to have reestablished what was known during the Vietnam War as Operation Phoenix, a program that assassinated Vietcong cadre, including suspected communist political allies.

Bush’s global strategy also has similarities to “Operation Condor” in which South American right-wing military regimes in the 1970s sent assassins on cross-border operations to eliminate “subversives.”


Under Bush’s remarkable double standards, he has taken the position that he can override both international law and the U.S. Constitution in deciding who gets basic human rights and who doesn’t. He sees himself as the final judge of whether people he deems “bad guys” should live or die, or face indefinite imprisonment and even torture.

no surprises here, of course... it's business as usual for the bush administration and the united states, extending all the way back to the 60s...

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Probable cause...? Tish-tosh... How quaint...!

oh, yeah, like we didn't ALREADY KNOW this...
Federal officials are routinely asking courts to order cellphone companies to furnish real-time tracking data so they can pinpoint the whereabouts of drug traffickers, fugitives and other criminal suspects, according to judges and industry lawyers.

In some cases, judges have granted the requests without requiring the government to demonstrate that there is probable cause to believe that a crime is taking place or that the inquiry will yield evidence of a crime. Privacy advocates fear such a practice may expose average Americans to a new level of government scrutiny of their daily lives.

Such requests run counter to the Justice Department's internal recommendation that federal prosecutors seek warrants based on probable cause to obtain precise location data in private areas. The requests and orders are sealed at the government's request, so it is difficult to know how often the orders are issued or denied.

the 4th amendment is SO YESTERDAY...

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'Tis the season - once again - for Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping Gospel Choir

the question that's on everyone's lips...

sounds like a must-see...


Sho•po•ca•lypse [shah PAW kuh lips] n.
The end of mankind from consumerism, over-consumption
and the fires of eternal debt!

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i'm a great fan of thunderstorms but i've never owned a camera capable of taking a shot like this...

Lightning spread across the sky Thursday during a thunderstorm
near Albury, Australia. The camera that took the picture used a
13-second exposure, which produced the unusually large flash of light.

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Black Friday started at 4 a.m. EST

toys "r" us, target, and wal-mart opened at 5 a.m. and penneys opened at 4... please make it stop...

A shopper carries off with a television at a
Target store in Chicago, November 23, 2007.
(John Gress/Reuters)

Shoppers — shrugging off a spate of lead-tainted toy recalls and higher prices for food and gas — jammed stores before dawn Friday to grab discounted TVs, toys and the hard-to-find Nintendo Wii, for the official start of the holiday season, expected to be the weakest retail showing in five years.

Stores are counting on hordes of shoppers who have pulled back in recent months. Merchants need them to keep coming throughout the holiday season to make their sales goals.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world's largest retailer, threw open its doors at 5 a.m., offering such specials as a Polaroid 42-inch LCD HDTV for $798 and a $79.87 Sony digital camera. From 5 a.m. to noon, Toys "R" Us Inc. offered 101 early morning specials on such toys as Mattel Inc.'s Barbie styling set and Hasbro Inc.'s FurReal interactive jungle cat toy. That's four times the number it offered last year.

J.C. Penney Co., which opened at 4 a.m., an hour earlier than last year, served up such deals as a leather massage recliner for $298.88, after a $50 mail in rebate. The original price was $799. Other deals include 50 percent off toys and board games.

In a scene replayed again and again at stores nationwide, about 200 people stood in line outside a Target in Columbia, S.C., at 5 a.m., an hour before the store was to open.

Tracy Jenkinson, 34, arrived just after 3 a.m. to take the first spot in line.

in the interest of full disclosure, my daughter-in-law and her mom were up and out of the house well before daylight, and there have been at least two mid-sortie cellphone shopping "consultations" since with my son who is at home with the kids... yes, i tend to keep my mouth shut...

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"If this is accurate, it's a lot worse than we thought, and if it isn't accurate, they're a lot more paranoid than we thought"

ralph nader talks about impeachment, and comments on massachusetts congressman john olver's response back in july when his constituents pressed him on the issue...
At about 10 am, the congressman came into the room with his aid, and Susie Patlove welcomed the congressman, laid out our agenda, and the congressman approved. We commenced with individual introductions and brief reports on the outcomes in each of our towns. Cong. Olver asked us to spare him a review of what he already knew and believed about the crimes of the Bush administration, and of the overwhelming majority of his district in favor of impeachment. When he aggrandized himself on his voting record, I took exception to 24 April 2007. When he asked what I was referring to, I challenged him to co-sponsor H. Res. 333; and he emphatically refused.

Nonetheless, we informed him of the good that would come out of an impeachment, and gave intelligent and caring answers to all of the objections he might harbor. We had present a young U.S. soldier, a veteran of both the Iraq and Afghanistan occupations, who directly asked the congressman what could we do to move him towards co-signing H. Res. 333. The congressman did not answer that direct question.

He is deeply concerned whether we will actually have an election in Nov. '08, as he believes this administration will likely strike Iran from the air, declare a national emergency, and cancel the '08 elections. He sees ending the war as his primary goal, and he believes the brilliant Nancy Pelosi has a strategy more potent than impeachment. He thinks impeachment is a futile waste of legislative energy, will be harmful of democratic '08 victories, and further tighten the "gridlock" he has complained of for the past few decades.

reading this, of course, leads directly to the thought, "holy shit, is that true?" and, if it is, it would go a long way toward explaining the extreme recalcitrance of congress when faced with h.res. 333...

(thanks to casey at open your mind's eye...)

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

So much for "uplifting!" Here's the kind of headline that inspires loss of bladder control.

i can speak with absolutely no authority on this subject, but, i can tell you, reading a headline like this makes my blood run cold...


Is Atomic Radiation as Dangerous as We Thought?

By Matthias Schulz

A mounting number of studies are coming to some surprising conclusions about the dangers of nuclear radiation. It might not be as deadly as is widely believed.

The explosions at Hiroshima and Nagasaki
(pictured) were devastating. The resulting
radiation illnesses, though, weren't as
bad as expected.

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For Thanksgiving, a little break from the gloom

this is nice...

November 22, 2007 - Happy Thanksgiving

Earth rise by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) on October 18, 2007, successfully performed the world's first high-definition image of an Earth rise by the lunar explorer KAGUYA," which was injected into a lunar orbit at an altitude of about 62 miles (100 km) on October 18, 2007. Image © 2007 by SELENE Team, JAXA, NHK.

Japan's unmanned, robotic Kaguya spacecraft currently in orbit around Earth's moon was launched two months ago. Its scientific mission, Selenological and Engineering Explorer (SELENE), nicknamed Kaguya, is to study the origin and evolution of the Moon. NASA adds: “An astronaut standing on the lunar surface would never see the Earth rise, since the moon always keeps the same side toward the Earth. This Earth rise and the famous Earth rise captured 40 years ago by the crew of Apollo 8, only occurs for observers in lunar orbit.”

(thanks to earthfiles...)

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Kissinger Associates Managing Director, L. Paul Bremer, starts the Osama story on 9/11

from brasscheck tv...

Mission Accomplished

In the early hours right after the 9/11 attacks, Paul Bremer appeared on NBC suggesting that Osama bin Laden was responsible. He was one of the first to float the name.

What Bremer failed to mention is that as he appeared on television calmly speculating about who was responsible, 1,700 of the employees the company he worked for were "missing" as a result of the attack on the South Tower of the World Trade Center.

It later turned out that over 200 were killed, one of the biggest losses of any organization that day.

Two years later, Bush put Bremer in charge of rebuilding Iraq.

There he decided against the advice of all military and diplomatic experts to disband Iraq's army and put 400,000 armed and trained and then-cooperative soldiers in the street without any means of support and a major grudge against the US.

Bremer...on TV right after 9/11 starting the Osama did it myth and then in Iraq guaranteeing a massive and deadly insurgency.

What was Bremer doing before 9/11?

Among other things, he was the Managing Director of Kissinger Associates.

You know, Henry Kissinger. The former Harvard Professor turned adviser to the Rockefeller family who became Nixon's foreign affairs adviser during the Vietnam War which Nixon extended for eight years beyond LBJs term.

Still think the "botched" occupation of Iraq was a mistake or a surprise?

Like Vietnam, the Iraq War is intended to bleed America dry
financially and isolate it diplomatically - and the very same cast of characters have their fingerprints all over it and profiting from it.

But try to find this very basic background information in the news media, mainstream or alternative.

yeah, good luck trying to find a LOT of "very basic background information in the news media, mainstream or alternative"...

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

November 22, 1963

i was a sophomore in high school, sitting in geology class, when we got the news that john f. kennedy had been shot... it was a catholic high school, and, minutes later, every student and every teacher filed into the church next door to sit in stunned silence... not long after that, we were told that kennedy was dead... everyone was in shock... the streets were quiet... the few people who were out came and went in silence, their faces fixed and uncomprehending... it was simply too much to absorb... now, 43 years later, i look at a country i no longer recognize...
As John Kennedy himself said:
"For we are opposed, around the world, by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence; in infiltration instead of invasion; on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice; on guerillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific, and political operations. Its preparations are concealed not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined, its dissenters are silenced, not praised; no expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. It conducts the cold war, in short, with a wartime discipline no democracy would ever hope to wish to match. ..."

He was right; but I think he didn't realize how far they were willing - and able - to go.

Nowadays, we know how far they are able and willing to go: just look at the events of September 11, 2001, which bear the same unmistakable stamp of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. In fact, as I have mentioned before, the same gang is involved.

Today, we live in a country where the poor and old cannot afford health care, something that John Kennedy was trying to correct. We live in a country where the economy is falling apart; a country where 44 million people live on less than $12,000 dollars a year; a nation where over 2 million people are homeless; a country where the entire media system is owned by only six media mega conglomerates; the country with the highest crime rate in the world (not being at war); a country with the world's largest prison population; a society where 25% of children under 12 live in poverty; a country that gives Israel billions of dollars a year to kill and maim Palestinians while there are over 2 million homeless on our own streets; a country where the gulf between the rich and poor is wider than it is in almost all other civilized countries; a nation that supports dictatorships in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and many other countries around the world; a country that spies on its own citizens, has trashed the Constitution; a country that has undertaken to torture people when it is known that no intelligence that comes from a tortured person is likely to be accurate; a country where the government is full of corruption worse than any Banana Republic; a country where 40 percent of the homeless are military veterans, in a country with the world's highest teen suicide rates; and all of these were issues that concerned John F. Kennedy, issues that he was working very hard - against a stubborn, oligarchic system - to correct.

and how fitting it is to quote from the speech kennedy was to have made that very afternoon at the trade mart in dallas had his life not been cut short before he had the chance to deliver it...
Finally, it should be clear by now that a nation can be no stronger abroad than she is at home. Only an America which practices what it preaches about equal rights and social justice will be respected by those whose choice affects our future. Only an America which has fully educated its citizens is fully capable of tackling the complex problems and perceiving the hidden dangers of the world in which we live. And only an America which is growing and prospering economically can sustain the worldwide defenses of freedom, while demonstrating to all concerned the opportunities of our system and society.

i've never stopped missing him...

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but it is happening already, Naomi

Naomi Wolf said:
[A]fter the first arrest, it generally goes in one direction, and according to the blueprint, the time has come for those first arrests. We're having this conversation now, before these arrests. But if tomorrow you read in the New York Times or the Washington Post that New York Times editor Bill Keller has been arrested, the staff will all be scared, others will get scared. And people don't are understand that that's how democracy closes down. And when that happens first, it's the tipping point at which we think it's still a democracy."

How very wonderful for Naomi Wolf, that in her world, the first arrest hasn't happened yet. It is happening now, it has happened already, for those fringe groups in society.

Just because the New York Times has been a shill for the 5th Estate, doesn't mean it won't reach them, too. Even the Sonderkommandos, were only buying a respite before they too were murdered by the Nazis.

My question to those that smite scapegoat groups, has long been this: "What is the critical mass necessary to escape persecution?"

Blacks at 11.5% of the population, arguably now have a right to exist. The gay and lesbian community is just over 5% of the general population, but until the US Supreme Court's LAWRENCE V. TEXAS decision, Pat Robertson was working toward a "Final Solution" to that "problem".

Since my area field and discipline is studying child porn, I can tell you this about that war: It is fought the same way they fight all wars. There is a kernel of truth to the initial accusation: child abuse within the world of child pornography. There are some victims. Some children have been raped. Some have been kidnapped. Not very many, though. They are by far the exceptions. There are pictures of children being raped. Some pictures show children tied up, some show hot candle wax dripped on them.

Opponents of child porn have taken those ugly extremes and painted everything else with that same very broad brush. But here's what they do, and they will wage war this same way, against everything: They go to the farthest extreme. By attacking child modeling as pornography, then everything in between is a slam dunk case.

Anyone who expects the war upon their particular social strata to go any differently, doesn't yet get it. Targeting won't be reasonable. It will go way beyond the pale. The Nazis deliberately targeted those of ancestors with even the smallest percentage of Jewish blood. Everything in between then became a slam dunk.

It works the same with the war on drugs. I remember this not long ago:

Safford Middle School officials did not violate the civil rights of a 13-year-old Safford girl when they forced her to disrobe and expose her breasts and pubic area four years ago while looking for a drug, according to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling.

The justices voted 2-1 in favor of the Safford School District on Sept. 21. The decision upheld a federal district court's summary judgement that Safford Middle School Vice Principal Kerry Wilson, school nurse Peggy Schwallier and administrative assistant Helen Romero did not violate the girl's Fourth Amendment rights on Oct. 8, 2003, when they subjected her to a strip search in an effort to find Ibuprofen, an anti-inflammatory drug sold over the counter and in prescription strengths." [note: none was even found]

Surely you are starting to see things like far more people being Tasered, usually merely because of attitude. Targeting, goes way over-the-top, way to the extremes, not by mistake, but by design. If it has to pull back, because of the courts or public outcry, then it at least drops back to a lesser extreme than it had been, but not to where it would have to, if it had only sought "reasonable" targets in the first place.

As with child pornography, government sets up a huge police machine and ancillary hysterical non-governmental base (in this case, known as the sex abuse industry), to fight their target, and even after they achieve their goals, they still continue to expand and they still grow their budgets. So they constantly have to identify new demons. Most of that "child pornography" which appears to be available on the Web, is simply decoy sites, established to give that appearance and to deceive the public into believing that there is a problem. That's how it works.

When they eventually get to your race, creed, ethnicity or social stratum, they will have started with some small kernel of truth as their pretext. They will then paint using that, with a very broad brush and sweep everything and everyone else up with it. That's how it's done.

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John Pilger's "War on Democracy"

all ten parts are available on youtube... this is part one...

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"We'll intervene whenever we decide it's in our national security interests to intervene, and if you don't like it, lump it."

a little background on the u.s. record for championing human rights and national sovereignty, and rejecting torture and death as a means of political control, set in the context of the western hemisphere institute for security cooperation (whinsec), formerly known as the school of the americas (* see below)...

john pilger interviews duane clarridge (** see below)...

and that youtube clip represents a part of our history we desperately need to know about that, for obvious reasons, seems to remain tucked away from public view... i probably wouldn't be nearly as aware of it myself had i not spent so much time in latin america... as i mentioned in a previous post on argentina's "guerra sucia" (dirty war), my home in buenos aires is a mere five blocks from the spot where many of the "disappeareds" were taken, a building that was also the hq of the argentine military criminals in charge of the guerra sucia, criminals trained by the school of the americas...
* After the legal authorization for the former School of the Americas was repealed in 2001 and the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation was established there were a number of changes at the school. A new human rights training program was developed and currently all students are given the option to attend classes, but are not required to receive the minimal eight hours of instruction in "human rights,[10] as well as training in the rule of law, due process, civilian control of the military, and the role of the military in a democratic society." A "train the trainer" program was developed which equips students attending the course to return to their home country and establish human rights training classes of their own. In addition to that training other courses now focus on leadership development, counter-drug operations, peace support operations, disaster relief, or "any other matter the Secretary [of Defense] deems appropriate".

duane clarridge...
Duane Ramsdell "Dewey" Clarridge, (1932-) a CIA operative and supervisor for more than 30 years, became famous in the mid-1980s for his role in the Contra end of the Iran-Contra Affair. The brains behind the clandestine mining operations in the Nicaraguan port during the 1980s which many considered a state-sponsored terrorist activity, he is credited to have initiated the efforts for the establishment of the Counterterrorist Center at the CIA.


Clarridge was indicted in November 1991 on seven counts of perjury and false statements. However, on Christmas Eve 1992 in the waning hours of his presidency, George H. W. Bush pardoned Clarridge before his trial could finish. At the same time, Bush pardoned 5 of Clarridge's associates in the Iran-Contra Affair including former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger (in an unprecedented move, Weinberger was pardoned before his trial had even taken place), Elliott Abrams, a former assistant secretary of state for Inter-American affairs; former National Security Advisor Robert McFarlane; and former CIA employees Alan Fiers and Clair George.

again, folks, THAT'S our history, no matter how much we might want to pretend it isn't...

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"There's just the lag time, which is so dangerous, when people still think it's a democracy, even while the martial law steps have begun"

don hazen at alternet interviews naomi wolf...
If the president can say, Well, "Don is an enemy combatant," there is nothing you can do. It's like "Tag, you're it!" To that extent we can not be innocent. And then someone is in jail for three years without being able to see their families or have easy access to a phone.

If they can do that, the pendulum can't swing, because after the first arrest, it generally goes in one direction, and according to the blueprint, the time has come for those first arrests. We're having this conversation now, before these arrests. But if tomorrow you read in the New York Times or the Washington Post that New York Times editor Bill Keller has been arrested, the staff will all be scared, others will get scared. And people don't understand that that's how democracy closes down. And when that happens first, it's the tipping point at which we think it's still a democracy.

... [P]eople need to believe and realize that that kind of negotiation is pretty much over. And there's just the lag time, which is so dangerous, when people still think it's a democracy, even while the martial law steps have begun. And that's where we are at, unless we get it.

Because you know, Congress keeps saying, "Hello, we're Congress." You have to answer us when we ask for information. The president's like, "Sorry, I'm ignoring you!" It starts becoming thinking like an abused woman, like: "Surely he's going to do it right this time, surely he's not going to do it again." And he does.

there is literally nothing we can do as american citizens that is more important than waking up to this possibility, and i will keep plaintively bleating about it until i see that the danger has passed, that i am snatched away from my keyboard for inciting "dissent", or that i fall, face-first, on that same keyboard in the final stages of senile dementia... the very LAST thing i want to do is to sit here and type the dreaded words, "i told you so..."

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the holy grail & mother load

Salvage ethnography and visual anthropology through image research reveal the truth:

"Trust" by Megadeth

Trying to save the elephants from poachers, Richard E. Leakey burned a cache of some 2,000 elephant tusks, ivory worth an estimated $3 million. They should have been saved for posterity, even if it meant that they went into a vault for the study by future generations.

Government has tried the same thing with the Art of sensual children's imagery. Like Leaky, government is wrong too.


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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The pairing of Markos Moulitsas and Karl Rove

how very interesting... i no sooner post my admittedly very snarky comment about markos moulitsas jointly appearing at newsweek with karl rove (see previous post), than i stumble across this from radar online...
Time magazine said nothing publicly about Rove's arrival at Newsweek, but a well-placed source told me that Bob Barnett (every Washington literati's favorite lawyer, including Bill Clinton) had traveled to the Time-Life building on Sixth Avenue to offer Rove's services before Newsweek snared them. Time's editors apparently felt the cost/benefit analysis wouldn't be in their favor if they embraced the man who has done more than anyone to keep the spirit of Joe McCarthy alive and well in American politics. (Read Joshua Green's definitive profile from the Atlantic in 2004.) "Time thought this wouldn't be like hiring George Stephanopoulos," my source explained. "They think Karl is essentially like an unindicted coconspirator in a whole string of felonies."

this just serves to strengthen my view that the pairing of markos and karl offers us a great deal to think about...

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Front page ridicule at Daily Kos

yeah, but what would you expect...? i'm no big fan of john zogby... as a matter of fact, i basically don't give a good goddam about john zogby... i'm also cool on alex jones... he has some interesting things to say, but i only treat his stuff as i treat anything else that comes at me from any media source these days, which is with a shrug and and attitude of, "yeah, ok, maybe so, maybe no..."

yesterday, i saw the results of the zogby blind phone poll that dhinmi references in his front-page kos post, a poll that showed ron paul with a substantial lead, and i noted that the poll had been "commissioned" by jones productions which, i immediately assumed, must be alex jones' outfit, which indeed it was... "interesting," i thought to myself, and then proceeded to forget all about it - until i just read dhinmi's post...

Knowing that Zogby has a horrible reputation for presenting dubious results that support the dubious claims of his rightwing clients, but without disclosing his conflicts of interest, I decided to look in to this so-called "media company" that commissioned the poll. It has numerous media outlets; in fact, at one of its flagship outlets, they are currently touting their poll results.

That’s right, John Zogby is polling for Ron Paul supporter and conspiracy theorist entrepreneur Alex Jones.

I say Ron Paul supporter because, in addition to pushing Ron Paul all over his various websites—including—he’s also contributed $2,300 to Paul’s campaign, the maximum contribution allowed for a primary campaign. This is a fact that Zogby apparently doesn’t feel compelled to divulge, and its something reporters and news outlets seldom worry about, treating Zogby as if he’s as non-partisan as truly non-partisan operations like Gallup, Pew and the Field Poll.

But this isn’t just some simply a case of doing a poll for a candidate’s supporter and not revealing the conflict. Alex Jones is possibly the greatest trafficker in crackpot conspiracies in America. For instance, through Alex Jones, you can learn about the occult empire running the planet, you can learn about the bloodlines of the Illuminati, you can learn the truth about global warming, that it’s a ruse to bring about one-world government, and all of this will be obvious to you once you begin to use Biblical prophesy to foresee world events.

i am sick and tired of ridicule as a tactic for dismissing anything and everything that doesn't fit within the standard boundaries that are constantly being defined and re-defined on daily kos, a supposedly "open," "liberal," "progressive," "democratic" "community"...... i am no fan of zogby and i am no fan of alex jones, but, i will tell you something, i am at the point now in my information gathering and information processing where I BELIEVE EVERYTHING AND I BELIEVE NOTHING, and that includes people like dhinmi, ridiculing and summarily rejecting anything that doesn't fit within his (i'm assuming he's a "he") worldview... imho, daily kos has been so choked up with groupthink, it's becoming hard to stomach... there's a reason markos moulitsas was invited to contribute to newsweek with karl rove... think about it...

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How low can we sink?

a hell of a lot lower than anyone could ever imagine...

check this...

The U.S. Military is demanding that thousands of wounded service personnel give back signing bonuses because they are unable to serve out their commitments.

To get people to sign up, the military gives enlistment bonuses up to $30,000 in some cases.

Now men and women who have lost arms, legs, eyesight, hearing and can no longer serve are being ordered to pay some of that money back.

One of them is Jordan Fox, a young soldier from the South Hills.

He finds solace in the hundreds of boxes he loads onto a truck in Carnegie. In each box is a care package that will be sent to a man or woman serving in Iraq. It was in his name Operation Pittsburgh Pride was started.

Fox was seriously injured when a roadside bomb blew up his vehicle. He was knocked unconscious. His back was injured and lost all vision in his right eye.

A few months later Fox was sent home. His injuries prohibited him from fulfilling three months of his commitment. A few days ago, he received a letter from the military demanding nearly $3,000 of his signing bonus back.

i'm dumbstruck...

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AT&T corporate environment

from slashdot:
AT&T is requiring thousands of employees who work from their homes to return to traditional office environments, sources say. 'It is a serious effort to reel in the telework people,' says the Telework Coalition's Chuck Wilsker, who has heard that as many as 10,000 or 12,000 full-time teleworkers may be affected. One AT&T employee says rumors have been circulating since AT&T's merger with SBC that the new upper management is not supportive of teleworking: 'We'd heard rumors to that effect, and all of a sudden we got marching orders to go back to an office.'"

my thoughts on this:

there are heady times ahead. AT&T knows that it has leak problems by employees, regarding its operations with the government, surrounding Total Information Awareness.

The law presently permits corporations to run Total Surveillance on their employee's workplace computers such as remote desktop viewing and keylogging, which they likely cannot yet do completely if their employees are at home.

There are important reasons that they feel that they must keep every employee under strict and absolute surveillance at this time, until such time that they are able to lock in Total Immunity for themselves.

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The only rational response to the insanity of "Black Friday"

it's that time again and heaven help us all... here's my thought from last year...
i like it... a lot...

THE ULTIMATE REFUND: On November 23d and 24th – the busiest days in the American retail calendar and the unofficial start of the international Christmas-shopping season – thousands of activists and concerned citizens in 65 countries will take a 24-hour consumer detox as part of the 14th annual Buy Nothing Day, a global phenomenon that originated in Vancouver, Canada.

From joining zombie marches through malls to organizing credit card cut-ups and shopoholic clinics, Buy Nothing Day activists aim to challenge themselves, their families and their friends to switch off from shopping and tune back into life for one day. Featured in recent years by the likes of CNN, Wired, the BBC, and the CBC, the global event is celebrated as a relaxed family holiday, as a non-commercial street party, or even as a politically charged public protest. Anyone can take part provided they spend a day without spending.

Reasons for participating in Buy Nothing Day are as varied as the people who choose to participate. Some see it as an escape from the marketing mind games and frantic consumer binge that has come to characterize the holiday season, and our culture in general. Others use it to expose the environmental and ethical consequences of overconsumption.

this is the first holiday season in two years i will have spent in the u.s... i can't tell you the relief it has been to be away from the incredibly intense "buy, buy, buy" atmosphere of christmas in the united states... it starts in late september and is totally in your face right on through the after-christmas sales... however, my family is here and being with them outweighs any revulsion i might feel over the frenzy of consumption... nonetheless, i'm glad to see an organized effort against "black friday..."

this was in the local paper this past sunday...
The day after Thanksgiving typically signifies the official start to the holiday shopping season, and retailers say shoppers are usually ready for the all-day shopping extravaganza, even when it starts at 4 a.m.

"It is a tradition for people," said Cynthia Moore, marketing director for Meadowood Mall. Moore has worked the hustle and bustle of the holidays for 13 years.

"The people who come out usually have a plan," she said. "I've seen families who come out with matching T-shirts and conquer shopping as if it were a sport."

Moore said there are two schools of thought when it comes to tackling the crowds on Black Friday.

"There are the people that do it because it's a tradition and they are out shopping and taking their time," she said.

"Then there are the people who consider this day a true sport. They have a game plan and they won't break until they have all of their shopping finished."

there's at least one more school of thought, the school i attend: the entire goddam thing is true obscenity, a perfect example of how people have been completely brainwashed into accepting the corporate, government, media, elite-sponsored ideology of consumption as the highest calling of every citizen... i don't know what's worse, having a "plan" and setting forth to "conquer shopping as if it was a sport," or accepting that "shopping" is a genuine holiday "tradition..." either one, to me, is nauseating...

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A Sibel Edmonds backgrounder

the amount of work done by luke ryland on the sibel edmonds case is truly amazing... he's taken it up as his principal blogging effort and has begun to make strong inroads at some of the bigger blogs... his post yesterday about sibel and daniel ellsberg was on the recommended diary list of daily kos all day (see my post from yesterday), no small accomplishment for that site... among the questions raised in the comments was "so what the hell is this sibel edmonds thing all about anyway...?" ever responsive, luke put together an excellent backgrounder which is now up at kos, the democratic underground, and let sibel edmonds speak... here's a transcript luke posted back in may 2006 from an article in the april 24, 2006, edition of the american conservative magazine...
Sibel Edmonds, the Turkish FBI translator turned whistleblower who has been subjected to a gag order could provide a major insight into how neoconservatives distort US foreign policy and enrich themselves at the same time. On one level, her story appears straightforward: several Turkish lobbying groups allegedly bribed congressmen to support policies favourable to Ankara. But beyond that, the Edmonds revelations become more serpentine and appear to involve AIPAC, Israel and a number of leading neoconservatives who have profited from the Turkish connection. Israel has long cultivated a close relationship with Turkey since Ankara's neighbours and historic enemies - Iran, Syria and Iraq - are also hostile to Tel Aviv. Islamic Turkey has also had considerable symbolic value for Israel, demonstrating that hostility to Muslim neighbours is not a sine qua non for the Jewish state.

Turkey benefits from the relationship by securing general benevolence and increased aid from the US Congress - as well as access to otherwise unattainable military technology. The Turkish General Staff has a particular interest because much of the military spending is channeled through companies in which the generals have a financial stake, making for a very cozy and comfortable business arrangement. The commercial interest has also fostered close political ties, with the American Turkish Council, American Turkish Cultural Alliance and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations all developing warm relationships with AIPAC and other Jewish and Israel advocacy groups throughout the US.

Someone has to be in the middle to keep the happy affair going, so enter the neocons, intent on securing Israel against all comers and also keen to turn a dollar. In fact the neocons seem to have a deep and abiding interest in Turkey, which, under other circumstances, might be difficult to explain. Doug Feith's International Advisors Inc, a registered agent for Turkey in 1989 - 1994, netted $600,000 per year from Turkey, with Richard Perle taking $48,000 annually as a consultant. Other noted neoconservatives linked to Turkey are former State Department number three, Marc Grossman, current Pentagon Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Eric Edelman, Paul Wolfowitz and former congressman Stephen Solarz. The money involved does not appear to come from the Turkish government, and FBI investigators are trying to determine its source and how it is distributed. Some of it may come from criminal activity, possibly drug trafficking, but much more might come from arms dealing. Contracts in the hundreds of millions, or even billions of dollars provide considerable fat for those well placed to benefit. Investigators are also looking at Israel's particular expertise in the illegal sale of US military technology to countries like China and India. Fraudulent end-user certificates produced by Defense Ministries in Israel and Turkey are all that is needed to divert military technology to other, less benign, consumers. The military-industrial-complex/neocon network is also well attested. Doug Feith has been associated with Northrup Grumman for years, while defense contractors fund many neocon-linked think tanks and "information" services. Feith, Perle and a number of other neocons have long had beneficial relationships with various Israeli defense contractors.

luke concludes his post with this...

Those 'same people' - at least on the American side - according to Giraldi [Phillip Giraldi, the author of The American Conservative article referenced above], appear to be Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, Paul Wolfowitz, Marc Grossman, Eric Edelman, and Stephen Solarz. It appears that we can also add William Cohen and Joseph Ralston - and Dennis Hastert - to that roster, and I'm sure there are a few more that haven't yet been publicly identified.

If what Sibel says is true, and her claims are all backed by documents and wiretaps, and also backed up by other agents who have filed similar complaints, and are ready and willing to testify. All of these people should be in jail. For a long, long time.

Congress must hold hearings to get to the bottom of these crimes. If you agree, please call Congress, today, and demand public, open hearings.


You know what to do

PHONE: (212) 975-3247

ABC email contacts

MSNBC & NBC Contacts

BBC America contact page

help us help ourselves... let's raise some hell...

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Monday, November 19, 2007

Another person who "gets it".

Hey all. I still have a bit of trouble embedding on posts. Sorry. Go check this out. It's Judge Napolitano. Good stuff. Courtesy of Information Clearing House.

"Civil Liberties in Wartime"

One day, when we get the Constitution back, I'm gonna learn me how to do this HTML stuff proper.


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Goldman Sachs and its alumni - the people who own us

despite the on-going train wreck in the world credit markets, goldman sachs continues to scoop up massive amounts of cash... just look at this...
[F]or Goldman’s chief executive, Lloyd C. Blankfein, this is turning out to be a very good year. He will surely earn more than the $54.3 million he made last year. If he gets a 20 percent raise — in line with the growth of Goldman’s compensation pool — he will take home at least $65 million. Some expect his pay, which is directly tied to the firm’s performance, to climb as high as $75 million.


Goldman’s stock has significantly outperformed its peers. At the end of last week it was up about 13 percent for the year, compared with a drop of almost 14 percent for the XBD, the broker-dealer index that includes the leading Wall Street banks. Merrill Lynch, Bear Stearns and Citigroup are down almost 40 percent this year.

besides blankfein, somebody whose name is unfamiliar to me, but who could still earn a possible SEVENTY FIVE MILLION FRIGGIN' GODDAM DOLLARS THIS YEAR, who the hell ARE the people this world-class money vacuum cleaner has spawned...? well, just look at THIS list...
Last week, John A. Thain, a former Goldman co-president, accepted the top position at Merrill Lynch, while a fellow Goldman alumnus, Duncan L. Niederauer, took Mr. Thain’s job running the New York Stock Exchange. Another fellow veteran trader, Daniel Och, took his $30 billion hedge fund public.

still unfamiliar names to me... but, wait... there's MORE...
Robert E. Rubin, a former Goldman head, is the new chairman of Citigroup. In Washington, another former chief, Henry M. Paulson Jr., is the Treasury secretary, having been recruited by Joshua B. Bolten, the White House chief of staff and yet another former Goldman executive.

The heads of the Canadian and Italian central banks are Goldman alumni. The World Bank president, Robert B. Zoellick, is another. Jon S. Corzine, once a co-chairman, is the governor of New Jersey. And in academia, Robert S. Kaplan, a former vice chairman, has just been picked as the interim head of Harvard University’s $35 billion endowment.

ah... NOW, we're gettin' down to it... are ya gettin' the picture here...? THESE, my friends, are the folks who OWN us, lock, stock, and barrel... they are also the ones who are calling the shots, these and their buddies at the council on foreign relations, the center for strategic and international studies, the center for a new american security, and, of course, let we forget, those at the carnegie endowment, the ford and guggenheim foundations that mettle helped us learn more about earlier today... keep 'em in mind, cuz what they say and do ends up being the way things will eventually come down...

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waking in time?

wow, C&L really scored finding this video:

Children of the Future
by Wilhelm Reich 1928-1951

...It is impossible to have healthy children growing up in a sick environment. It means, furthermore, that under no circumstances can we expect to jump suddenly from a sick past into a healthy future. It will take several generations of newborn infants growing up under ever-widening horizon of knowledge of the child's true nature before the first signs of the Children of the Future begin to appear.

It is not the inborn nature of the child that constitutes the difficulty. The trouble lies in the thinking and acting of the majority of educators, parents, and physicians. It lies in the maze of wrong opinions which have nothing to do with the child. It lies in the fact that, at present, social interest, as represented by the newspapers, magazines, ... etc., with very few exceptions, is completely centered on diplomatic maneuvering and not on our single most important hope: the child.

We have learned that instead of a jump into the realm of the Children of the Future, we can hope for no more than a steady advance, in which the healthy new overlaps the sick old structure, with the new slowly outgrowing the old."

from the Baltimore Sun:

FBI: No delay in hate-crimes data to wait out protest
When the Federal Bureau of Investigation issued its hate-crimes report this morning, a document which indicated a nearly eight percent increase in 2006 in such crimes compared with the year before, more than a few suspicions were aroused.

Why did the agency wait until the Monday morning of Thanksgiving week to issue the report and not do it last week when Congress was still in town, as were thousands of mostly African American marchers led by Rev. Al Sharpton marched around the Justice Department to demand more federal action against hate crimes?

Was the FBI trying to keep from further riling up the demonstrators who visited Washington on Friday to express their anger at the Jena 6 and other racial incidents?

Absolutely not, said FBI spokesman John Miller."

But just as psychologists have been implicated in human rights abuse by outright shilling for the government and doing things like driving BSCT Teams in interrogations and then neglect to include their own sins in the new DSM-V -- The FBI is itself a source and engine and vector of strife and hate, itself driving us headlong right towards the end-of-the-world. Physician heal thyself? The FBI cannot even seem to comprehend its own role in fanning hate and intolerance and in rapidly destroying mankind's fragile future. The FBI's own lead role is hardly included within its own report. Go figure.

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Perv's hand-picked new court, when asked to jump, says, "How high?"

doesn't this kind of look like a middle finger coming so soon after negroponte's visit...?
A Supreme Court hand-picked by President Gen. Pervez Musharraf swiftly dismissed legal challenges to his continued rule on Monday, opening the way for him to serve another five-year term — this time solely as a civilian president.

The opposition has denounced the new court, saying any decisions by a tribunal stripped of independent voices had no credibility. Musharraf purged the court Nov. 3 when he declared emergency rule, days before the tribunal was expected to rule on his eligibility to serve as president.

The United States has put immense pressure on Musharraf to restore the constitution and free thousands of political opponents jailed under the emergency before Pakistan's critical parliamentary election Jan. 8.

Monday's court ruling could hasten Musharraf's decision to give up his army post. The general has said he would quit as armed forces commander by the end of the month, assuming he was given the legal go-ahead by the court to remain as president.

i'm terribly impressed with how they reached that decision SO QUICKLY after the declaration of martial law and the suspension of the constitution...

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oh our righteous steadfast and stalwart State

SF Chronicle has this on Senator Diane Feinstein:
Feinstein is 'not one to simply take the direction or pressure from even very important and very responsible outside groups, including those in the civil rights community', said Douglas Kmiec, a Pepperdine University law professor and former Justice Department official under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. 'She has her own mind.'

Feinstein is usually described as a moderate, and her record varies from issue to issue. She voted to authorize the invasion of Iraq in 2003, supported Bush's initial tax cuts in 2001 and Republican-sponsored restrictions on class-action lawsuits in 2005, and often crosses party lines on immigration and crime.


'She has been critically important', said Carl Tobias, a University of Richmond (Va.) law professor. 'When it's close, she's the person the Republicans look to.'"

During last Thursday's whirlwind 4 hour Senate Judiciary meeting, the immediate passing of huge new Judicial Salary increases was repeatedly broached.

So now the courts show that they are really fine team players.

The People, as opponents to Telecom Immunity passing, should not lose stride over opposition to Telcom Immunity just because the courts at the moment are making it seem moot and meaningless by blocking discovery now, at seemingly each new turn.

If Telcom Immunity was such a moot point, the pols wouldn't be conspiring at this very moment on ways to ram it through.

I remembered that the home page of Build Freedom has a video that mentions that government plans to something like triple or quadruple our prison present populations very shortly. I think I'll post that here:

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"Is the medieval thumbscrew REALLY any worse than banging your thumb with a HAMMER?"

tom tomorrow...

"... a very different debate... one I damn sure never expected to see..."

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Fear tactics are keeping Sibel Edmonds gagged

the brad blog and luke ryland have been doing incredible yeoman's work in coaxing a government-intimidated domestic media into allowing sibel edmonds to tell her story... it's an AMERICAN story, about AMERICAN corruption, that should be covered by AMERICAN media, but, so far, no takers, although offers from foreign media as well as u.s. alternative media have flooded in... sibel, quite understandably, is seeking a one-time, credible, NATIONAL platform to air her explosive charges so, if she is subsequently hustled off to a cia black site, it will have to be done in full public view rather than seen through the filter of the ever-"questionable" lens of the blogosphere and alternative media...

today, on the brad blog, daniel ellsberg offers his perspective on sibel's situation...

Ellsberg says there's a reason that the Government, and both political parties, would rather not deal with something as explosive as Sibel's charges. Much like his own case, when the Republican Nixon administration fought against publication of the Pentagon Papers even though they were bound to embarrass the Democratic Johnson administration far more than Nixon's.

"It involves our allies in various places in the Middle East. It involves our allies in Turkey and in Afghanistan and involves people in our Congress and our State Department," he says.

Yes, Israel and the extremely powerful AIPAC lobby which supports both parties, is said to be involved as well.

"There's no way that the President and Vice-President can escape culpability in this case," Ellsberg charges. "If they claim they don't know about it, then they are culpable in not knowing about it, and that's impeachable right there."

i say, let's get this party started...

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Two Naomi's

h/t DU:

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is a parley with Feinstein wise?

from EFF: "Congress Keeps Telecoms on the Hook for Illegal Spying":
Full House and Senate Judiciary Committee Each Pass Bills with No Amnesty for Warrantless Surveillance

Washington, D.C. - Both the full House of Representatives and the Senate Judiciary Committee voted Thursday to keep telecommunications companies on the hook for their role in illegal government spying on millions of ordinary Americans -- at least for now.

The bills each make changes to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). But, despite veto threats from the White House, neither of the two bills give blanket amnesty to telecoms that took part in the massive warrantless domestic surveillance program. Both bills would allow dozens of lawsuits against the telecoms to proceed, thus allowing federal courts to rule on whether dragnet domestic surveillance documented is legal."

I watched the 4 hours of the Senate Judiciary on Thursday. I am not convinced that the Telcom Immunity scandal won't raise the specter of its ugly head again, before the Fisa bill gets voted on in full session. I would give high marks to Senator Dianne Feinstein for her performance on Thursday though. Her call was to slow down in order to ponder the implications of what they were doing.

I haven't written on this up to now, because I have been wondering: Is Feinstein being honest about how she wants to learn more about what it means to grant Telcom Immunity? I have been contemplating communicating with her and spelling it out. But I have also been reluctant because I have been factoring in this logic.

Senator Arlen Specter held some ground, but then he tried to help usher in other advances to strip away more constitutional rights. It was clear from watching the meeting though, that there is far more going on than they were saying. There are other things being spied on than just "Terrorists". They repeatedly referred obliquely to other purposes. There is much much more going on here than watching a handful of terrorists, overseas. One thing clearly jumped out at me: The word "Terrorism" is being used as a code word to cover all manner of operations they are engaged in.

I did notice that Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy's face, looked like that of a jolly old man. But the face of Senator Orrin Hatch seemed frozen like stone, locked in sheer and utter hate and rage, his looked exactly to me, like the face of a Gargoyle. I think it has to do with his Mormon religion. Like Mitt Romney as well, their religion simply will not scale up to encompass the entire country and be able to destroy by force, those who will not surrender to its harsh rigors and strictures and cruel and intolerant demands.

In fact, Mitt Romney recently remarked as how it was "unAmerican" to hold his religion up to him. Excuse me? Romney is running for the most powerful office in the land, expressly to be able to use force to make people surrender in obedience to his religious bent.

Ars Technica writes that AT&T has made a significant purchase of a company with technology to identify files that pass as traffic through their networks -- even those that have been substantially modified:

AT&T announced earlier this year that was planning to introduce content filtering of some sort for all video passing across its network. Exactly what AT&T was thinking remained unclear: would the company truly attempt to reassemble the fragments of peer-to-peer transmissions, then extract video from all sorts of different codecs, then attempt to match it-in real time-to some database of copyrighted works? Would such a thing even be possible?

It's still not clear how AT&T plans to deploy its system, but the company is serious about it. Further evidence of that came today, when a brief Wall Street Journal writeup (subscription) pointed out that the company has just invested in Vobile.

Vobile's core product is a screening technology that it calls "VideoDNA." Like other systems of its kind, VideoDNA develops a unique signature from every frame of video. The signature is meant to be robust enough to survive various transformations and edits, and it can then be used to run matches against incoming content."

What is clear is that AT&T is gearing up to do a whole lot more packet inspections, not less; a whole lot more spying, not less.

The Seoul Times is reporting: "Internet a Threat, Says UN Terror Chief":

The threat of global terrorism is starting to roll back in some areas, but the Internet is a potent weapon being used to rally militants and must be better monitored, the new UN counter-terrorism chief said on Nov.13..

"The Internet is a real worry and I don't think we've found the answer yet," said Mike Smith, an Australian who starts work on Nov.12 as head of the United Nations' Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate in New York.

"In the old days extremists used to have to cross borders to plan and attack sites," Smith told Reuters. "Nowadays a lot of that stuff can happen on the Internet, they can give instructions, they can coordinate, they can recruit through these jihadi websites."

Will doing the bidding of RIAA fall conveniently under the auspices of fighting "Terrorism" now? It is starting to look that way as tools start to fall in place.

The Intelligence Community sure appears to be gearing up for something far bigger than fighting Middle Eastern terrorists.

Thinking of agitating to attract like minded rebel-rousers via your blog? That's why this could be a one-size-fits-all political control law.

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