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Archives: December 2003

Tue Dec 30, 2003

Are you still out there lurking, Jacques?

American 'Values' Cast a Global Shadow
By James Carroll
The Boston Globe

Tuesday 30 December 2003

THIS HAS BEEN the year of American democracy. The values of this nation have never been more dramatically on display before the world. "Freedom" has been the watch word, from Operation Iraqi Freedom to the coming Freedom Tower at Ground Zero in New York. In a period of enormous stress, America has pulled itself together, freshly defined its beliefs, and begun to press them on others. Washington aims at nothing less than the propagation of U.S. notions of civil order and social justice everywhere. And why shouldn't citizens be proud? But this vision throws a shadow. Contradictions of American idealism have also been manifest with rare clarity this year -- and not only in wars abroad. A signal event took place in Massachusetts as the year approached its end. A jury made up of citizens of one of the relatively few states that outlaws the death penalty nevertheless imposed it in the federal murder case against Gary Lee Sampson, the brutal killer of Jonathan Rizzo and Philip McCloskey. As advocates of the death penalty hoped, this decision in the heart of a community that has long rejected capital punishment -- the last execution in Massachusetts was in 1947 -- speeds America's complete return to frontier justice.
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 30, 03 | 10:21 pm | Profile

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Sun Dec 28, 2003

What, No Fanfare?


With a Whisper, Not a Bang
By David Martin
The San Antonio Current

Wednesday 24 December 2003

Bush signs parts of Patriot Act II into law — stealthily.

On December 13, when U.S. forces captured Saddam Hussein, President George W. Bush not only celebrated with his national security team, but also pulled out his pen and signed into law a bill that grants the FBI sweeping new powers. A White House spokesperson explained the curious timing of the signing - on a Saturday - as "the President signs bills seven days a week." But the last time Bush signed a bill into law on a Saturday happened more than a year ago - on a spending bill that the President needed to sign, to prevent shuttng down the federal government the following Monday. More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 28, 03 | 9:10 pm | Profile

[2] comments (8192 views) |  link

The New Republicans



NYTimes 12/28/03

The Republican Party has been in charge of the national agenda for almost three years now — Democratic majorities in Congress don't crimp George W. Bush's style the way they did for his father or Ronald Reagan when they were in office. We have thus had an unobstructed view of what the 21st-century version of the party looks like. It's very clear this is not the father's G.O.P.

The most striking thing about the new Republicanism is the way it embraces big government. The Bush administration has presided over a $400 billion expansion of Medicare entitlements. The party that once campaigned to abolish the Department of Education has produced an education plan that involves unprecedented federal involvement in local public schools. There is talk from the White House about a grandiose new moon shot. Budgetary watchdogs like the Heritage Foundation echo the Republican Senator John McCain's complaint about "drunken sailor" spending.

All this has left Democrats spluttering over their own hijacked agenda while old-style Republican conservatives despair. "We have come loose from our moorings," Senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska concluded as Congress left Washington at the end of the year. It was probably inevitable that a big central government would look a whole lot better to Republicans when they got control of it. And since this page tends to favor activist government, we have little reason to complain when the Bush administration agrees.

What has happened to the Republicans does not seem to reflect an actual shift in ideology; indeed, the philosophic center of this administration is hard to pin down. Yet whatever the reason, some formerly reliably Republican doctrines seem to have disappeared. Federalism is a case in point. After decades of extolling state governments as the best laboratory for new ideas, Republicans in Washington have been resisting state experimentation in areas ranging from pollution control to antispam legislation to prescription drugs.

Late-20th-century Republicanism was an uneasy alliance of social conservatives — who were comfortable with government intervention in citizens' lives when it came to morality issues — and libertarians who wanted as little interference as possible. That balancing act ended on 9/11. Since then, the Justice Department has enlarged the intrusive powers of government by, among other things, authorizing "sneak and peek" searches of private homes and suspending traditional civil liberties for certain defendants. The story of the military chaplain who was arrested — apparently mistakenly — as a suspected terrorist and then wound up being publicly humiliated with a public vetting of his sex life seems like a summary of a libertarian's worst fears of an overreaching federal government.

The Republicans' newly acquired activism, however, has very clear limits. The modern party's key allegiance is to corporate America, and its tolerance for intrusive federal government ends when big business is involved. If there is a consistent center to the domestic philosophy of the current administration, it is the idea that business is best left alone. The White House and Congress have chipped away at environmental protections that interfere with business interests on everything from clean air to use of federal lands. The administration is determined to deliver on corporate America's goal of cutting overtime pay for white-collar workers. At the same time, it has been tepid in asserting greater federal vigilance over the developing scandal of workplace safety.

Republicans have always enjoyed their reputation as the champions of business. The difference now is that they no longer couple their business-friendly attitudes with tight-fistedness. Discretionary spending has jumped 27 percent in the last two years; budget hawks complain Congressional pork is up more than 40 percent. Some of that money has gone to buy the allegiance of wavering party members in the closely divided House and Senate, but much of it is directly tied to the demands of big business. Agriculture subsidies to corporate farms have swollen to new heights, while energy policy has been reduced to a miserable grab bag of special benefits for the oil, gas and coal companies. The last Bush energy bill, which passed the House but died in the Senate, seems likely to be remembered most for the now-famous subsidy for an energy-efficient Hooters restaurant in Louisiana.

The two halves of Republican policy no longer fit together. A political majority that believes in big government for people, and little or no government for corporations, has produced an unsustainable fiscal policy that combines spending on social programs with pork and tax cuts for the rich. Massive budget deficits have been the inevitable result. Something similar happened in the Reagan administration. But unlike Ronald Reagan, Mr. Bush has given no hint of a midcourse adjustment to repair revenue flow. In fact, his Congressional leaders talk of still more tax cuts next year to extend the $1.7 trillion already enacted. That would compound deficits, which could reach $5 trillion in the decade.

This, it appears, is what compassionate conservatism really means. The conservative part is a stern and sometimes intrusive government to regulate the citizenry, but with a hands-off attitude toward business. The compassionate end involves some large federal programs combined with unending sympathy for the demands of special interests. If only it all added up.

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 28, 03 | 3:44 pm | Profile

[9] comments (8330 views) |  link

Sat Dec 27, 2003

westbrooks bbq

did I mention yum?
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Posted by: pibor on Dec 27, 03 | 4:13 pm | Profile

[1] comments (5013 views) |  link

Thu Dec 25, 2003

Gosh, those neocons are so righteous!


Rumsfeld Backed Saddam Even After Chemical Attacks
By Andrew Buncombe
The Independent UK

Wednesday 24 December 2003

Fresh controversy about Donald Rumsfeld's personal dealings with Saddam Hussein was provoked yesterday by new documents that reveal he went to Iraq to show America's support for the regime despite its use of chemical weapons.

The formerly secret documents reveal the Defence Secretary travelled to Baghdad 20 years ago to assure Iraq that America's condemnation of its use of chemical weapons was made "strictly" in principle.

The criticism in no way changed Washington's wish to support Iraq in its war against Iran and "to improve bi-lateral relations ... at a pace of Iraq's choosing".

Earlier this year, Mr Rumsfeld and other members of the Bush administration regularly cited Saddam's willingness to use chemical weapons against his own people as evidence of the threat presented to the rest of the world.

Senior officials presented the attacks against the Kurds - particularly the notorious attack in Halabja in 1988 - as a justification for the invasion and the ousting of Saddam.

But the newly declassified documents reveal that 20 years ago America's position was different and that the administration of President Ronald Reagan was concerned about maintaining good relations with Iraq despite evidence of Saddam's "almost daily" use of chemical weapons against Iranian troops and Kurdish rebels.

In March 1984, under international pressure, America condemned Iraq's use of such chemical weapons. But realising that Baghdad had been upset, Secretary of State George Schultz asked Mr Rumsfeld to travel to Iraq as a special envoy to meet Saddam's Foreign Minister, Tariq Aziz, and smooth matters over.

In a briefing memo to Mr Rumsfeld, Mr Shultz wrote that he had met Iraqi officials in Washington to stress that America's interests remained "in (1) preventing an Iranian victory and (2) continuing to improve bilateral relations with Iraq".

The memo adds: "This message bears reinforcing during your discussions."

Exactly what Mr Rumsfeld, who at the time did not hold government office, told Mr Aziz on 26 March 1984, remains unclear and minutes from the meeting remain classified. No one from Mr Rumsfeld's office was available to comment yesterday.

It was not Mr Rumsfeld's first visit to Iraq. Four months earlier, in December 1983, he had visited Saddam and was photographed shaking hands with the dictator. When news of this visit was revealed last year, Mr Rumsfeld claimed he had "cautioned" Saddam to stop using chemical weapons.

When documents about the meeting disclosed he had said no such thing, a spokesman for Mr Rumsfeld said he had raised the issue with Mr Aziz.

America's relationship with Iraq at a time when Saddam was using chemical weapons is well-documented but rarely reported.

During the war with Iran, America provided combat assistance to Iraq that included intelligence on Iranian deployments and bomb-damage assessments. In 1987-88 American warships destroyed Iranian oil platforms in the Gulf and broke the blockade of Iraqi shipping lanes.

Tom Blanton, the director of the National Security Archive, a non-profit group that obtained the documents, told The New York Times: "Saddam had chemical weapons in the 1980s and it didn't make any difference to US policy. The embrace of Saddam and what it emboldened him to do should caution us as Americans that we have to look closely at all our murky alliances."

Last night, Danny Muller, a spokesman for the anti-war group Voices in the Wilderness, said the documents revealed America's "blatant hypocrisy". He added: "This is not an isolated event. Continuing administrations have said 'we will do business'. I am surprised that Donald Rumsfeld does not resign right now."

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 25, 03 | 7:25 pm | Profile

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Mon Dec 22, 2003

Conservatives Target Testicles

by Thom Hartmann

Rush Limbaugh just declared psychological war on the working white males of America, although most of them probably didn't realize it. This week Limbaugh rolled out a "funny" faux advertisement for the "Hillary Clinton Testicle Lock Box" that now any woman can use to clamp down on men's testicles just like Hillary does.

This wasn't just a whim of Limbaugh's, or a response to his recent rehab. It's part of a sophisticated psychological operations program by conservatives that explicitly targets working men in America, and dates back to research first done for Richard Nixon.

Ask most men, "Who are you?" or, "What do you do?" and you won't hear, "I'm my wife's husband," or, "I'm my son's dad." Instead, men typically answer by describing what they do for a living. Men do this because they're so conditioned to think of themselves as breadwinners, and generally derive most of their social status from their occupation.

That's why, in this day and age, men who work for a living are a troubled bunch. Jobs are moving overseas in record numbers, conservatives have declared war on organized labor, and insecurity in the workplace is at peak not seen since the Great Depression. Add to this the simple fact that most men feel their masculinity is defined in part by their ability to be successful breadwinners, and you have a potent formula for psychological manipulation.

More -> http://www.commondreams.org/views03/1220-05.htm

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 22, 03 | 1:44 pm | Profile

[1] comments (4457 views) |  link

Those Damn French. One of these days we'll teach them that when we say 2 + 2 = 5 we friggin' mean it!


Saddam Was Held by Kurdish Forces, Drugged and Left For U.S. Troops
Agence France-Presse

Saturday 20 December 2003

LONDON - Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) was captured by US troops only after he had been taken prisoner by Kurdish forces, drugged and abandoned ready for American soldiers to recover him, a British Sunday newspaper said.

Saddam came into the hands of the Kurdish Patriotic Front after being betrayed to the group by a member of the al-Jabour tribe, whose daughter had been raped by Saddam's son Uday, leading to a blood feud, reported the Sunday Express, which quoted an unnamed senior British military intelligence officer.

The newspaper said the full story of events leading up to the ousted Iraqi president's capture on December 13 near his hometown of Tikrit in northern Iraq (news - web sites), "exposes the version peddled by American spin doctors as incomplete".

A former Iraqi intelligence officer, whom the Express did not name, told the paper that Saddam was held prisoner by a leader of the Kurdish Patriotic Front, which fought alongside US forces during the Iraq war, until he negotiated a deal.

The deal apparently involved the group gaining political advantage in the region.

An unnamed Western intelligence source in the Middle East told the Express: "Saddam was not captured as a result of any American or British intelligence. We knew that someone would eventually take their revenge, it was just a matter of time."

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 22, 03 | 11:04 am | Profile

[0] comments (4343 views) |  link

Sun Dec 21, 2003

They say they aren't, but I say they're oh so politically correct


http://www.babesagainstbush.com/main.html

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 21, 03 | 3:36 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4441 views) |  link

Fri Dec 19, 2003

let's review (ancient history)


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Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 19, 03 | 2:20 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4337 views) |  link

it can't happen here, it can't happen here....


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Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 19, 03 | 2:16 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4612 views) |  link

Winning Hearts and Minds While Spreading Democratic Liberties and Values to the Middle East


Tanks Roll into Tikrit
By Robin Pomeroy
Reuters

Tuesday 16 December 2003

"Any demonstration against the government or coalition forces will be fired upon"
-- U.S.-backed Regional Governor Hussein al-Jaburi
(Reuters) - Tanks have rolled out on to the streets of Tikrit, as a message that the U.S. army will not tolerate shows of support for Saddam Hussein in the captured president's home town.

U.S. troops forcibly broke up at least four attempted pro-Saddam demonstrations and three soldiers were wounded when a bomb went off as their Humvee patrolled the streets.

In response, around 30 American tanks and Bradley armoured vehicles rolled up Tikrit's busy main street as two helicopter gunships buzzed overhead.

Armed troops jumped down from tanks and some used strong language to clear shoppers from crowded pavements in a town smarting from lost privilege after the fall of Saddam.

Tikrit is home to many of Saddam's kinsmen who enjoyed wealth and status under his three decade rule. U.S. troops found the former president hiding in a pit just a few km (miles) from town. A U.S. commander conceded that the occupying forces would never be popular.

"These people love Saddam, that isn't true of other cities," said Lieutenant Colonel Steven Russell. "These people have always hated us in this area. It is not surprising that they hate us."

Some locals backed into shop doorways, many just stood and watched the parade by an occupying army whose temporary base is a sprawling complex of palaces Saddam built for himself and his family on the side of the Tigris river on the edge of town.

An hour later, a handful of military vehicles returned, one carrying the U.S.-backed regional governor Hussein al-Jaburi, while a recording of his voice boomed a warning to would-be Saddam loyalists.

"Any demonstration against the government or coalition forces will be fired upon," Jaburi's voice said, according to an army interpreter. "This is a fair warning."

Demonstrators risk a year in jail and, if they work for the state as civil servants or teachers, they will loose their jobs, the message said. All demonstrations are illegal in the U.S.-occupied province.

"They are not allowed to go around kissing pictures of Saddam in this city," Russell said. "It will not happen."

Afterwards, Jaburi and Russell interviewed a middle-aged man in traditional Arab clothing who they suspect of inciting demonstrations.

"Look me in the eye. Let me make something very clear," the American officer told the man over tea at the governor's office.

"If our ears and eyes see and hear you are connected with demonstrations, and anti-coalition activities you will be going to jail for a very long time."

Russell described the roll-out of tanks not as a show of force, but as a security operation and said a tough approach was needed. "We cannot hand out lollipops, it does not work," he said.

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 19, 03 | 8:18 am | Profile

[0] comments (4678 views) |  link

Thu Dec 18, 2003

Dubya or FDR?


"Our productivity is high. I hope some of it has to do -- I know some of it has to do, I hope you understand some of it has to do with the fact that the role of government can help create growth."

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 18, 03 | 7:24 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4261 views) |  link

Nice


Insurgents or Protesters?
18 are Killed in Clashes with US Troops
By Robert Fisk in Baghdad
Independent UK

Wednesday 17 December 2003

While Washington and London were still congratulating themselves on the capture of Saddam Hussein, US troops have shot dead at least 18 Iraqis in the streets of three major cities in the country.

Dramatic videotape from the city of Ramadi 75 miles west of Baghdad showed unarmed supporters of Saddam Hussein being gunned down in semi-darkness as they fled from Americans troops. Eleven of the 18 dead were killed by the Americans in Samarra to the north of Baghdad.

More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 18, 03 | 7:01 pm | Profile

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RAT

A hardware store in the neighborhood is going out of business after 37 years of business. Evicted by yuppies, essentially. Anyway, they've been giving old stuff to Keiran, owner of Porchlight (http://www.porch-light.net) where I have my "office".
One of the old boxes had this in it, unbeknownst to them.
Truly facsinating.
I think it ate some poison, crawled into this box and dried up. It would not surprise me if this corpse had been in this box for 20 years. Or 3. I don't know.
image
More...

Posted by: pibor on Dec 18, 03 | 11:00 am | Profile

[4] comments (5547 views) |  link

New Oakland Bar

Cafe Van Kleef
1621 Telegraph Avenue
"... but makes a point of saying that if someone requests something he doesn't have, he'll order it and have it in the next time."
Hmmm....maybe I can convince him to get Maraschino - the essential ingredient for cocktails that few bars have.

http://eastbayexpress.com/issues/2003-12-17/planet.html/1/index.html

Posted by: pibor on Dec 18, 03 | 10:49 am | Profile

[2] comments (6500 views) |  link

Rad Band

I haven't seen them, but this sure is funny:
http://www.eastbayexpress.com/issues/2003-12-17/music.html/1/index.html
http://www.arnocorps.com

Posted by: pibor on Dec 18, 03 | 10:46 am | Profile

[0] comments (4362 views) |  link

Kean: Attack Was Preventable

(CBS) For the first time, the chairman of the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks is saying publicly that 9/11 could have and should have been prevented, reports CBS News Correspondent Randall Pinkston.

"This is a very, very important part of history and we've got to tell it right," said Thomas Kean.

"As you read the report, you're going to have a pretty clear idea what wasn't done and what should have been done," he said. "This was not something that had to happen."

Appointed by the Bush administration, Kean, a former Republican governor of New Jersey, is now pointing fingers inside the administration and laying blame.

"There are people that, if I was doing the job, would certainly not be in the position they were in at that time because they failed. They simply failed," Kean said.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/12/17/eveningnews/main589137.shtml

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 18, 03 | 9:26 am | Profile

[1] comments (4465 views) |  link

Wed Dec 17, 2003

bush in 30 seconds..

Bush in 30 seconds

There are 1,017 ads here.

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 17, 03 | 6:19 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4076 views) |  link

James Baker, continued - audio

Click here for the Greg Palast on James Baker.. it's a quicktime .mov file..

Defending the Saudis.. and he has his new office in the white house.

Other connections .. he's the general councelor for the Carlyle group, 10th biggest arms dealer.

LISTEN to it DAMMNIT

It's much better than the Greg Palast article below..

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 17, 03 | 5:10 pm | Profile

[0] comments (5571 views) |  link

James Baker defends the Saudi's against 9-11 families suit

That's right. Are we hearing about this in the news? I haven't seen it anywhere. But it's true.

James Baker's law firm, Baker Botts of Texas have been working to prevent the families involved in the suit against Saudi Arabia from finding out about Saudi funding of Al Qaeda.

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3067906/

James Baker is newly appointed to act as Iraq's Debt Counselor:

And who will net the big bucks under Jim Baker's plan? ... Saudi Arabia, which claims $30.7 billion due from Iraq plus $12 billion in reparations from the First Gulf war.

[...]

The official press release says the President has not appointed Mr. Baker.   Rather Mr. Bush is "responding to a request from the Iraqi Governing Council." [..]

This takes the Bush administration' Conflicts-R-Us appointments process to a new low.

Or maybe there's no conflict at all.   If you see Jim Baker's new job as working not to protect a new Iraqi democracy but to protect the loot of the old theocracy of Saudi Arabia, the conflict disappears.

[...]


quoted from here: http://www.gregpalast.com/detail.cfm?artid=300&row=0

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 17, 03 | 9:50 am | Profile

[3] comments (9194 views) |  link

Tue Dec 16, 2003

Anthony Braxton


There's been a lot of discussion on it by the players and the "new music" community here in the Bay Area. Here's one interesting insight from someone who recorded the group....

More...

Posted by: pibor on Dec 16, 03 | 3:53 pm | Profile

[2] comments (8877 views) |  link

Two Years? If Caught Over Here We'd Have Sent Her Indefinitely to a Navy Brig


For Telling The Truth
By Norman Solomon
The Baltimore Sun

Sunday 14 December 2003

Few Americans have heard of Katharine Gun, a former British intelligence employee facing charges that she violated the Official Secrets Act. So far, the American press has ignored her. But the case raises profound questions about democracy and the public's right to know on both sides of the Atlantic.

Ms. Gun's legal peril began in Britain on March 2, when the Observer newspaper exposed a highly secret memorandum by a top U.S. National Security Agency official. Dated Jan. 31, the memo outlined surveillance of a half-dozen delegations with swing votes on the U.N. Security Council, noting a focus on "the whole gamut of information that could give U.S. policy-makers an edge in obtaining results favorable to U.S. goals" - support for war on Iraq.
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 16, 03 | 2:05 pm | Profile

[1] comments (5528 views) |  link

Sports Fan

An epic trip it was, my ranteur friends. It all began Friday after work, smoking and "speeding" our way to LAX in an attempt to fly standby on an earlier flight than we had booked. My traveling companion was young [XX], the Raven fan from way back to their humble beginnings. We tried to charm our way on to an earlier flight, but Internet special rates are hard to alter, so we enjoyed a free hour at a couple of bars in LAX. I even met a Laker clad American Indian. More...

Posted by: pibor on Dec 16, 03 | 9:25 am | Profile

[0] comments (6306 views) |  link

War Profiteering is The Worst Kind of Theft

Patriots and Profits

By PAUL KRUGMAN

Last week there were major news stories about possible profiteering by Halliburton and other American contractors in Iraq. These stories have, inevitably and appropriately, been pushed temporarily into the background by the news of Saddam's capture. But the questions remain. In fact, the more you look into this issue, the more you worry that we have entered a new era of excess for the military-industrial complex.
The story about Halliburton's strangely expensive gasoline imports into Iraq gets curiouser and curiouser. High-priced gasoline was purchased from a supplier whose name is unfamiliar to industry experts, but that appears to be run by a prominent Kuwaiti family (no doubt still grateful for the 1991 liberation). U.S. Army Corps of Engineers documents seen by The Wall Street Journal refer to "political pressures" from Kuwait's government and the U.S. embassy in Kuwait to deal only with that firm. I wonder where that trail leads.
Meanwhile, NBC News has obtained Pentagon inspection reports of unsanitary conditions at mess halls run by Halliburton in Iraq: "Blood all over the floors of refrigerators, dirty pans, dirty grills, dirty salad bars, rotting meat and vegetables." An October report complains that Halliburton had promised to fix the problem but didn't.
And more detail has been emerging about Bechtel's much-touted school repairs. Again, a Pentagon report found "horrible" work: dangerous debris left in playground areas, sloppy paint jobs and broken toilets.
Are these isolated bad examples, or part of a pattern? It's impossible to be sure without a broad, scrupulously independent investigation. Yet such an inquiry is hard to imagine in the current political environment — which is precisely why one can't help suspecting the worst.
Let's be clear: worries about profiteering aren't a left-right issue. Conservatives have long warned that regulatory agencies tend to be "captured" by the industries they regulate; the same must be true of agencies that hand out contracts. Halliburton, Bechtel and other major contractors in Iraq have invested heavily in political influence, not just through campaign contributions, but by enriching people they believe might be helpful. Dick Cheney is part of a long if not exactly proud tradition: Brown & Root, which later became the Halliburton subsidiary doing those dubious deals in Iraq, profited handsomely from its early support of a young politician named Lyndon Johnson.
So is there any reason to think that things are worse now? Yes.
The biggest curb on profiteering in government contracts is the threat of exposure: sunshine is the best disinfectant. Yet it's hard to think of a time when U.S. government dealings have been less subject to scrutiny.
First of all, we have one-party rule — and it's a highly disciplined, follow-your-orders party. There are members of Congress eager and willing to take on the profiteers, but they don't have the power to issue subpoenas.
And getting information without subpoena power has become much harder because, as a new report in U.S. News & World Report puts it, the Bush administration has "dropped a shroud of secrecy across many critical operations of the federal government." Since 9/11, the administration has invoked national security to justify this secrecy, but it actually began the day President Bush took office.
To top it all off, after 9/11 the U.S. media — which eagerly played up the merest hint of scandal during the Clinton years — became highly protective of the majesty of the office. As the stories I've cited indicate, they have become more searching lately. But even now, compare British and U.S. coverage of the Neil Bush saga.
The point is that we've had an environment in which officials inclined to do favors for their business friends, and contractors inclined to pad their bills or do shoddy work, didn't have to worry much about being exposed. Human nature being what it is, then, the odds are that the troubling stories that have come to light aren't isolated examples.
Some Americans still seem to feel that even suggesting the possibility of profiteering is somehow unpatriotic. They should learn the story of Harry Truman, a congressman who rose to prominence during World War II by leading a campaign against profiteering. Truman believed, correctly, that he was serving his country.
On the strength of that record, Franklin Roosevelt chose Truman as his vice president. George Bush, of course, chose Dick Cheney.

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 16, 03 | 6:12 am | Profile

[0] comments (5906 views) |  link

Mon Dec 15, 2003

Curious George W.

http://home.nyc.rr.com/jadedem/gw1.html

Posted by: Virginia Snodgrass on Dec 15, 03 | 4:13 pm | Profile

[1] comments (4340 views) |  link

A Rant by Matt Bivens

The President's brother, Jeb Bush, made a surprise announcement: He's going to turn an 800-inmate Florida jail into a Christian-faith-only rehabilitation center. Inmates who don't want to play will be moved to a new jail; no doubt that will go over well with the guards at the new facility when the inmates who chose to reject Christianity are bussed in. Those who stay and who meet requirements will take "religion-based classes in everything from parenting and character building to job training," says Florida's prison chief.

There are a few hiccups with this plan. One is that it is "a clearly unconstitutional scheme," as the Reverend Barry Lynn observes. Says Lynn, who is executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State: "A state can no more create a faith- based prison than it could set up faith-based public schools or faith- based police departments."

So that's a problem. Another is that, wishful thinking aside, Christian prison rehab programs have not been proven terribly effective -- although studies have shown the faith- based approach to spending tax dollars can be terribly expensive.

More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 15, 03 | 2:28 pm | Profile

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just a freedom hat-or

December 15, 2003, President Bush Holds Press Conference, room 450,
Eisenhower Executive Office Building
***
"The world is better off without you, Mr. Saddam Hussein. I find it very
interesting that when the heat got on, you dug yourself a hole and you
crawled in it."

I think this proves the idea that the root of the problem with our ene-ME-s is that they hate freedom. Once Iraq was , uh, liberated, Saddam just couldn't take all the freedom, so he had to crawl into a dirty li'l hole.

(please note new category, by the way) More...

Posted by: pibor on Dec 15, 03 | 12:20 pm | Profile

[1] comments (5529 views) |  link

Sun Dec 14, 2003

Wants to catch up on Grand Theft Auto:Vice City

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Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 14, 03 | 7:35 am | Profile

[2] comments (5578 views) |  link

Sat Dec 13, 2003

"Democracies Die Behind Closed Doors"

Keeping Secrets
By Christopher H. Schmitt and Edward T. Pound
U.S. News & World Report

Friday 12 December 2003

The Bush administration is doing the public's business out of the public eye. Here's how--and why
"Democracies die behind closed doors."
--U.S. Appeals Court Judge Damon J. Keith
At 12:01 p.m. on Jan. 20, 2001, as a bone-chilling rain fell on Washington, George W. Bush took the oath of office as the nation's 43rd president. Later that afternoon, the business of governance officially began. Like other chief executives before him, Bush moved to unravel the efforts of his predecessor. Bush's chief of staff, Andrew Card, directed federal agencies to freeze more than 300 pending regulations issued by the administration of President Bill Clinton. The regulations affected areas ranging from health and safety to the environment and industry. The delay, Card said, would "ensure that the president's appointees have the opportunity to review any new or pending regulations." The process, as it turned out, expressly precluded input from average citizens. Inviting such comments, agency officials concluded, would be "contrary to the public interest."

Ten months later, a former U.S. Army Ranger named Joseph McCormick found out just how hard it was to get information from the new administration. A resident of Floyd County, Va., in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, McCormick discovered that two big energy companies planned to run a high-volume natural gas pipeline through the center of his community. He wanted to help organize citizens by identifying residents through whose property the 30-inch pipeline would run. McCormick turned to Washington, seeking a project map from federal regulators. The answer? A pointed "no." Although such information was "previously public," officials of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission told McCormick, disclosing the route of the new pipeline could provide a road map for terrorists. McCormick was nonplused. Once construction began, he says, the pipeline's location would be obvious to anyone. "I understand about security," the rangy, soft-spoken former business executive says. "But there certainly is a balance--it's about people's right to use the information of an open society to protect their rights."
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 13, 03 | 4:53 pm | Profile

[0] comments (10439 views) |  link

Miserable Failure

Dec. 8 — President Bush is a miserable failure.

How much one agrees or disagrees with that statement is a matter of personal opinion. But according to the Internet's most popular search engine, it is cold, hard fact.

Go ahead, try it.

Type in "miserable failure" on the Google Web site and the first Web link most likely to show up will take you directly to the official online biography for the current occupant of the Oval Office.

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/SciTech/US/bush_google_bomb_031208-1.html

Posted by: grommit on Dec 13, 03 | 4:38 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4630 views) |  link

frontline: truth, war and consequences | PBS

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/truth/

Posted by: grommit on Dec 13, 03 | 4:26 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4039 views) |  link

Fri Dec 12, 2003

iChat Manga

image

Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 12, 03 | 1:21 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4864 views) |  link

Inconceivable!

A Deliberate Debacle
By PAUL KRUGMAN

James Baker sets off to negotiate Iraqi debt forgiveness with our estranged allies. And at that very moment the deputy secretary of defense releases a "Determination and Findings" on reconstruction contracts that not only excludes those allies from bidding, but does so with highly offensive language. What's going on?

Maybe I'm giving Paul Wolfowitz too much credit, but I don't think this was mere incompetence. I think the administration's hard-liners are deliberately sabotaging reconciliation.
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 12, 03 | 11:59 am | Profile

[0] comments (9860 views) |  link

Victor Davis Hanson on Blood & Iron

image

Another meaty meal from VDH:

"Reflect on June 1941, when from the British Channel to the suburbs of Moscow, and from the Arctic Circle to the Sahara, Nazi armies ran rampant. Spain, Turkey, and the Arab world openly bandied about their fascist sympathies, while South America and much of Asia likewise dismissed democracy as an historical artifact better left to musty histories of ancient Greece. After all, decadent Frenchmen of a failed republic had been steamrolled by the rise of new invincible ideologues who believed in blood and iron.

Yet by spring 1943 — less than three years later — fascism was seen not only as horrific, but, far worse, as increasingly impotent. It was not that the world suddenly discovered the horror of the death camps or came to its senses about Mein Kampf, but rather after North Africa, Sicily, Italy, Stalingrad, the radical turnabout in the Atlantic, and the onset of huge formations of fighter-led bombers, millions began to think Hitler in fact was going to lose badly — and might take everyone who professed allegiance down with him.

I don't know at what point Eastern Europe grasped that the Soviet Union was tottering and its planned uprisings were not going to follow the failures of past slaughters in Hungary and Czechoslovakia. But after the rise of Solidarity, the deployment of Pershing missiles, the threat of Star Wars, and Ronald Reagan's massive military buildup, the floodgates were unleashed and there was a mad rush not to be the last Soviet Communist in Europe.

There are plenty of third-world revolutionaries today, but very few who wave the hammer and sickle. Again, it is not that mankind ceased being naïve or duped, and woke up to the absurdities of Marxism and the mass murder that typically followed its implementation. Rather, very few wished to be associated with a losing ideology that offered no arms, patrons, or money — but a lot of misery, humiliation, and ridicule.

This war against the Islamofascists and autocrats of the Middle East is no different."

Read the rest

Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 12, 03 | 11:59 am | Profile

[2] comments (8371 views) |  link

Thu Dec 11, 2003

Kucinich at the Democratic Debate

My friend's mother used to be a Republican. We allways wondered why, as an educator in Cedar Rapids Iowa she voted that way. Anyway the whole debacle of George Bush from idiotic wars to funds drying up at the school she works at forced her to reconsider. Now she's very active in campaigning for Dennis Kucinich.

In fact she called to tell us what a huge reaction he got at the democratic debate. By most accounts Dean was pretty lukewarm.

Go Dennis! [url=3D"http://www=2Ekucinich=2Eus/audio/debat=
e-121003-byte=2Emp3"]mp3[/url]

See Dennis' remarks: [url=3D"http://resources=2Ekucinich=2Eus/v=
ideo/video/debate/debate_real_56k=2Eram"]56K[/url] | [url=3D"http://re=
sources=2Ekucinich=2Eus/video/video/debate/debate_real_broadband=2Eram"=]Broadband[/url] (RealMedia)


He's my favorite vegan presidential candidate.

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 11, 03 | 11:00 pm | Profile

[1] comments (7419 views) |  link

When Helms and Lott dismissed the Al Qaeda threat

The Sins of September 11 -- By William Rivers Pitt

When Helms and Lott dismissed the Al Qaeda threat

[The following article was reprinted in the Nov. 9 issue of Granma
International. It speaks to issues I think will be important in the
2004 presidential campaign: Terrorism, how to fight it and the fakery
and failures of the Bush Administration. -- Irving Beinin ]

==========

The Sins of September 11
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective -- Monday 13 October 2003
http://www.truthout.org/docs_03/101303A.shtml

I am beginning to despise reading. I have lost count of the number of
times I have read some passage in a politically-oriented book, and
then been uncontrollably motivated to hurl said book against a wall or
across the room in fury. My library looks like someone took a weed-
whacker to it; all the dust-jackets have taken a fearsome beating.

More...

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 11, 03 | 12:28 pm | Profile

[0] comments (9721 views) |  link

Wed Dec 10, 2003

Nobel winner blasts rights abuses

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3306803.stm


Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi has criticised states for infringing human rights "under the cloak of the war on terrorism".

In a speech after accepting her award, Ms Ebadi, 56, said the events of 11 September 2001 in the United States had been misused for this end.

She also said the fact she had won the prize would inspire masses of women striving to achieve their rights.

The Iranian lawyer was the first Muslim woman to be awarded the peace prize.

She won the $1.4m prize for her work for the rights of women and children in Iran, in a year when other names mentioned as being in contention included Pope John Paul II and former Czech President Vaclav Havel.

Double standards?

Ms Ebadi said it was worrying that human rights were being violated by the same Western democracies that had introduced the principles.

And she singled out the alleged breaches of the Geneva conventions at the Guantanamo base in Cuba where the US has been holding more than 600 mainly former Taleban suspects for more than two years.









Mr Khatami has played down the award




"Why is it that some in the past 35 years, dozens of UN resolutions concerning the occupation of the Palestinian territories by the state of Israel have not been implemented promptly?" she said.

"Yet, in the past 12 years, the state and people of Iraq, once on the recommendation of the Security Council, and the second time in spite of UN Security Council opposition, were subjected to attack, military assault, economic sanctions, and ultimately, military occupation?"

Iranian message

"The people of Iran, particularly in recent years, have shown that they deem participation in public affairs to be their right, and that they want to be masters of their own destiny," she said in her acceptance speech.

She has vowed to press the Iranian Government to put into practice the international human rights treaties it has signed but not implemented.

Ms Ebadi says she will step up her activities and those of her NGO, the Centre for the Defence of Human Rights.

One of the main activities of the centre is representing defendants in political cases.

She also expressed the hope that political prisoners in Iran would be freed as soon as possible.

Mrs Ebadi's award aroused huge controversy in Iran.

Right-wing papers denounced the prize as part of a foreign plot to pressure Tehran.

Reformist President Mohammad Khatami has described the award as political and not important.

Ms Ebadi was the first female judge in her country, but was forced to resign following the Islamic Revolution in 1979

Posted by: grommit on Dec 10, 03 | 9:21 pm | Profile

[0] comments (5495 views) |  link

An interesting theological critique of Dubya's "Christianity"

Bush's Religious Language
by Juan Stam

George W. Bush began to take part in a Bible study group in 1985, after two decades of binge drinking. For two years he studied the Scriptures and put his heavy drinking behind him. In that same process, he succeeded in refocusing his life, which had been diffused and confused, into a coherent cosmic vision--or ideology--which corresponded to the mentality of the conservative evangelicals of his country.

When Bush decided to run for office, political strategist Karl Rove helped him make the link with the evangelical sector. While other candidates were discussing polemical themes, Rove advised him that it was much better for him to simply speak about his faith. Bush presented himself as "a man with Jesus in his heart." When a reporter asked him who his favorite philosopher was, Bush replied: "Christ, because he changed my heart." That corresponded perfectly to the extreme individualism of fundamentalism, and it constituted what in the metalanguage of evangelical code words is called "personal witness." More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 10, 03 | 1:29 pm | Profile

[1] comments (6801 views) |  link

This Ain't No "Breakfast Club"

Raid might have broken drug-dog rules
Video shows Goose Creek police using canines in school sweep, apparently violating procedure
The Associated Press

CHARLESTON — The Goose Creek Police Department appears not to have followed its own rules on using drug dogs in its guns-drawn raid at Stratford High School last month.

A videotape the Police Department released shows a police dog passing close by students who had been forced to kneel on the floor during the Nov. 5 raid. It also captures an officer lecturing students as that part of the raid ends.

“If you’re an innocent bystander to what has transpired here today, you can thank those people that are bringing dope into this school. Every time we think there’s dope in this school, we’re going to be coming up here to deal with it, and this is one of the ways we can deal with it,” the unidentified officer says.
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 10, 03 | 1:17 pm | Profile

[1] comments (7245 views) |  link

Tue Dec 09, 2003

When was the last time Bill Kristol and Al Gore Said the Same Thing on the Same Day??

How Dean Could Win . . .

By William Kristol
Tuesday, December 9, 2003; Page A27


Going into the final day of the college football regular season, Oklahoma was undefeated and ranked No. 1. The Sooners had the best defense in the nation, had outscored their opponents by an average of 35 points and had a nine-game winning streak against ranked teams. "OU: Among best ever?" USA Today asked (rhetorically) on Friday. Kansas State, by contrast, had three losses, and had never won a Big 12 championship. Oklahoma was favored by two touchdowns. Kansas State, of course, won, 35-7.


More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 09, 03 | 10:41 pm | Profile

[0] comments (6565 views) |  link

Turkeys on the Moon...


Dear Mr. Bush,

Well, it's going on two weeks now since your surprise visit to one of the two countries you now run and, I have to say, I'm still warmed by the gesture. Man, take me along next time! I understand only 13 members of the media went with you -- and it turns out only ONE of them was an actual reporter for a newspaper. But you did take along FIVE photographers (hey, I get it, screw the words, it's all about the pictures!), a couple wire service guys, and a crew from the Fox News Channel (fair and balanced!).

Then, I read in the paper this weekend that that big turkey you were holding in Baghdad (you know, the picture that's supposed to replace the now-embarrassing footage of you on that aircraft carrier with the sign "Mission Accomplished") -- well, it turns out that big, beautiful turkey of yours was never eaten by the troops! It wasn't eaten by anyone! That's because it wasn't real! It was a STUNT turkey, brought in to look like a real edible turkey for all those great camera angles.

Now I know some people will say you are into props (like the one in the lower extremities of your flyboy suit), but hey, I get it, this is theater! So what if it was a bogus turkey? The whole trip was bogus, all staged to look like "news." The fake honey glaze on that bird wasn't much different from the fake honey glaze that covers this war. And the fake stuffing in the fake bird was just the right symbol for our country during these times. America loves fake honey glaze, it loves to be stuffed, and, dammit, YOU knew that -- that's what makes you so in touch with the people you lead!

It was also a good idea that you made the "press" on that trip to Baghdad pull the shades down on the plane. No one in the media entourage complained. They like the shades pulled and they like to be kept in the dark. It's more fun that way. And, when you made them take the batteries out of their cell phones so they wouldn't be able to call anyone, and they dutifully complied -- that was genius! I think if you had told them to put their hands on their heads and touch their noses with their tongues, they would have done that, too! That's how much they like you. You could have played "Simon Says" the whole way over there. It wouldn't have been that much different from "Karl Says," a game they LOVE to play every day with Mr. Rove.

Well, if you're planning any surprises for Christmas, don't forget to include me. When I heard last week that you wanted to send a man back to the moon, I thought, get the fake goose ready -- that's where ol' George is going for the holidays! I don't blame you, what with nearly 3 million jobs disappeared, and a $281 billion surplus disappeared, and the USA stuck in a war that will never end -- who wouldn't want to go to the moon! This time, take ALL the media with you! Embed them on the moon! They'll love it there! It looks just like Crawford! You can golf on the moon, too. You'll have so much fun up there, you might not want to come back. Better take Cheney with you, too. Pretend it's a medical experiment or something. "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for every American who's sick and tired of all this crap."

Yours,

Michael Moore

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 09, 03 | 10:20 pm | Profile

[2] comments (5816 views) |  link

Music gift suggestions

I need music suggestions, fellow citizens. For my Christmas list. Standard 'desert island' choices, if you would please:

1. released 2002 or after
2. released 2002 or after
3. released 1980-1989
4. released 1970-1979
5. released 1970-1979

Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 09, 03 | 7:49 pm | Profile

[4] comments (6228 views) |  link

"The left-wing take-over of the Democrats continues apace"

A good take on Gore's Dean Endorsement by Sullivan:

"A man who has spoken for MoveOn is a natural Dean supporter and his endorsement, when you think about simply the issues, is an obvious one. What you are seeing among the Democrats right now is therefore a classic right-left split, with the Clintons representing the right (and the party establishment) and Dean emerging as a left-wing threat to their power (using the web to foment his peasants' revolt)."
I have to admit this is fascinating to watch, and I am genuinely excited about the success that MoveOn has had on Dean's behalf!

Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 09, 03 | 7:20 am | Profile

[4] comments (6334 views) |  link

More about Kissenger and Argentina

Anyway, this was on the front page of the Financial Times a couple of days ago:

Kissinger 'gave his backing to 1976 crackdown in Argentina'

December, 5.- By Thomas Catán in London.

Henry Kissinger, former US secretary of state, backed a 1976 crackdown on dissidents by the Argentine military dictatorship that ultimately resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of people, according to documents released on Thursday.

In meetings in the US with Admiral Cesar Augusto Guzzetti, the Argentine foreign minister of the day, Mr Kissinger and other senior US officials urged the military junta to speed its counter-subversion operations and finish the job before the US Congress cut off military aid.

The meetings, in October 1976, took place after seven months in which the military junta rounded up, tortured and executed thousands of leftists in Argentina. According to a State Department transcript of the meetings, obtained by the Washington-based National Security Archive under the Freedom of Information Act, Mr Kissinger told the visiting Argentine official: "Look, our basic attitude is that we would like you to succeed. I have an old-fashioned view that friends ought to be supported.

"What is not understood in the United States is that you have a civil war. We read about human rights problems but not the context. The quicker you succeed the better - we won't cause you unnecessary difficulties. If you can finish before Congress gets back, the better."

The meeting with Mr Kissinger further reinforced the message Mr Guzzetti received from another US official in Washington the previous day. There, Charles W.Robinson, acting secretary of state, told him: "It is possible to understand the requirement to be tough" but said reports of human rights abuses were sparking alarm in the US Congress.

He suggested relaxation of "extreme counter-subversion measures" might be timed to coincide with Congress' return in January.

"The problem is that the US is an idealistic and moral country and its citizens have great difficulty in comprehending the kinds of problems faced by Argentina today," Mr Robinson said.

"There is a tendency to apply our moral standards abroad and Argentina must understand the reaction of Congress with regard to loans and military assistance. The American people, right or wrong, have the perception that today there exists in Argentina a pattern of gross violations of human rights."

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 09, 03 | 12:32 am | Profile

[1] comments (5993 views) |  link

Operation Pipe Dreams

Chong Family Values

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 09, 03 | 12:25 am | Profile

[5] comments (5827 views) |  link

Mon Dec 08, 2003

I know one way to end voter apathy amongst our youth...


A Cold Draft
By Ted Rall
Universal Press Syndicated

Thursday 04 December 2003

Will Bush Bring Back the Draft?

NEW YORK - When I was a kid, standing around the post office waiting for my mom to buy stamps, I entertained myself by flipping through the "wanted" notices clipped to the bulletin board. I was impressed by the fact that most of the people who'd done bad things didn't look all that evil in their mug shots. Mostly the felons looked tired. And poor. You could tell from their frayed collars. More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 08, 03 | 4:40 pm | Profile

[0] comments (5592 views) |  link

Iraqi troops given chemical arms, claims ex-colonel

By Benedict Brogan and Jack Fairweather in Baghdad
(Filed: 08/12/2003) Telegraph UK

Saddam Hussein's front-line units were provided with rocket-propelled grenades armed with chemical or biological weapons for use against allied troops, a former Iraqi colonel claims.

Lt-Col al-Dabbagh's description of the "secret weapon" issued on the Iraqi dictator's orders appeared to back Tony Blair's claim that weapons of mass destruction (WMD) posed an imminent threat to British interests.

He told The Sunday Telegraph he commanded an air-defence unit in the western desert and claimed to be the source of the intelligence used by MI6 and the Prime Minister to bolster the case for war.

He insisted that the weapons of mass destruction could have been deployed in half an hour, faster than the 45 minutes made famous by the Government's controversial dossier on Iraq's WMD.

He claimed they were not used because the bulk of the Iraqi army chose not to resist the allied advance. "If the army had fought for Saddam Hussein and used these weapons there would have been terrible consequences," he said.

However, in Baghdad last night there were doubts expressed about his version of events. His commanding officer said that he had no knowledge of his men being supplied with WMD warheads.

A senior Iraqi general in charge of air defences during the war, who was part of a committee that reported directly to Saddam on the supply and training of air defence units, said: "This lieutenant colonel wanted to scare the Western world."

The general, who would not give his name, conceded that authority may have been bypassed but said the frontline troops he visited were in a shambolic state and were unlikely to have received any additional weapons.

"We were very low on equipment," he said. "There certainly wasn't any talk of chemical warheads."

Michael Howard, the Conservative leader, told Sky News: "The claim is that battlefield weapons of mass destruction were available.

"That's not what the Government told us at the time. The Government told us that WMD could be deployed in 45 minutes and that was a misleading claim."

Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 08, 03 | 7:17 am | Profile

[0] comments (5762 views) |  link

Is it "ancient history" if the perpetrator serves on the Defense Policy Board which meets in the Pentagon and Advises the Administration?

Kissinger Approved Argentinian 'Dirty War'
By Duncan Campbell
The Guardian UK

Saturday 06 December 2003

Declassified US files expose 1970s backing for junta
Henry Kissinger gave his approval to the "dirty war" in Argentina in the 1970s in which up to 30,000 people were killed, according to newly declassified US state department documents.
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 08, 03 | 6:13 am | Profile

[1] comments (10081 views) |  link

Sun Dec 07, 2003

MoveOn Movie night.

Uncovered: The Whole Truth about the Iraq War

There were 3000 some showings where people opened up their house and showed this movie tonight, we did, inviting over some friends.

Here's the Map.

Download a link:

UNCOVERED (Hi-Q) Why Bush REALLY attacked Iraq (56m Xvid).avi(1).torrent -352 Mb

UNCOVERED - Why Bush REALLY attacked Iraq (56m Xvid)-avi.torrent - 142 Mb

UNCOVERED (Lo-Q) Why Bush REALLY attacked Iraq (56m Xvid).avi(1).torrent - 72 Mb

Download Bittorrent for PC there or for Mac to download the movie from the above link. Be prepa.red to wait a while The more popular a Bittorrent file is, the faster the download, since you also share it with others automatically as you download it. Something very high bandwidth can be distributed easily with using this - as it doesn't require a central server.

Then watch the DIVX file with MPlayerOSX for Macs or Linux or Video Lan for Macs or PC. Divx is a combination of different video and audio compression formats that take up the space of about 1/6 to 1/10 the space of DVDs cobbled together by hackers (I guess). It's starting to be built into some DVD players.

The possibilities for getting different videos out there is great..


Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 07, 03 | 10:22 pm | Profile

[4] comments (7451 views) |  link

Hee hee hee hee


The Conservative Case Against George W. Bush
By Doug Bandow
The American Conservative

Monday 01 December 2003

Some liberals admit that they hate President George W. Bush. Many conservatives say they are appalled at this phenomenon.... More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 07, 03 | 3:34 pm | Profile

[3] comments (7256 views) |  link

Fri Dec 05, 2003

Revisiting Cold War Coups and Finding Them Costly

Revisiting Cold War Coups and Finding Them Costly

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 05, 03 | 1:27 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4836 views) |  link

I think that averages out to $69.49 apiece...


image More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 05, 03 | 12:02 pm | Profile

[0] comments (4248 views) |  link

Framing the Dems.

How conservatives control political debate and how progressives can take it back
By George Lakoff

On the day that George W. Bush took office, the words "tax relief" started appearing in White House communiqués. Think for a minute about the wordrelief. In order for there to be relief, there has to be a blameless, afflicted person with whom we identify and whose affliction has been imposed by some external cause. Relief is the taking away of the pain or harm, thanks to some reliever.

This is an example of what cognitive linguists call a "frame." It is a mental structure that we use in thinking. All words are defined relative to frames. The relief frame is an instance of a more general rescue scenario in which there is a hero (the reliever), a victim (the afflicted), a crime (the affliction), a villain (the cause of affliction) and a rescue (the relief). The hero is inherently good, the villain is evil and the victim after the rescue owes gratitude to the hero.

The term tax relief evokes all of this and more. It presupposes a conceptual metaphor: Taxes are an affliction, proponents of taxes are the causes of affliction (the villains), the taxpayer is the afflicted (the victim) and the proponents of tax relief are the heroes who deserve the taxpayers' gratitude. Those who oppose tax relief are bad guys who want to keep relief from the victim of the affliction, the taxpayer. More...

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 05, 03 | 10:26 am | Profile

[1] comments (7998 views) |  link

Twenty Most Annoying Conservatives of 2003

http://www.pandagon.net/archives/00002229.htm

the comments... oh my gawd.

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 05, 03 | 9:20 am | Profile

[2] comments (5733 views) |  link

What happened to Jacques post (and comments) re: our "friend" from KC?


Did it just disappear?

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 05, 03 | 6:19 am | Profile

[5] comments (7497 views) |  link

Visionaries Hope NASA Plan Includes Mars...

Visionaries Hope NASA Plan Includes Mars, Von Neumann Probes, Inter-Planetary Terra Forming, Settlements Outside Solar System: World Jubilant To Hear All White People May Be Off Planet By Year 2070: Major Corporations Eager To Abandon Ecologically Unsound, Soon To Be Sucked Dry Earth: Colonials, Imperialists, Capitalists Bored & Restless; Looking For Fresh Conquests In The Stars

"Whitey Made The Planet A Shithole And Still Thinks He Has All The Answers."---Albert X


By MARCIAN DUNGE
Assassinated Press Aerospace Writer
December 4, 2003, 5:48 PM PCP

MANILA — After decades of getting dizzy watching astronauts circle Earth, space visionaries finally have reason for optimism: NASA and other agencies are working with the White House on a bold, new course of exploration.

Whether the destination is Mars or our nearest galaxy remains to be seen. But for the majority of the world's population the hope that large numbers of white people will soon be settling other planets in other star systems brought jubilation. "We wish them well," said Phan Van Trih. "As long as they get the fuck outta here."

"God speed," and cries of "How can I help speed you on your way" were coming into NASA headquarters via phone, fax and internet at the rate of 2 billion an hour. Many expressed the desire that Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld and the entire cast of the current administration be given the honor of being the first to leave perhaps on the scheduled trip to terra form Mars in 2003. "Please, may God take whitey up into the heavens," chanted millions in the developing world's capitals. "This is a most interesting use of communications technology, " commented NASA head Sean O'Keefe. "How ungrateful. How are they going to tell us to leave once we're gone?"

Others however were not so optimistic. "They must take their restless spirit, their desire to know all the hidden secrets of nature, their single-minded desire to reach the stars and unravel the unfanthomable--- but Mars is not far enough away. They will shoot at us and bomb us from there. These are a greedy yet petty group of motherfuckers. We must help them go much farther away," said Aime Cesaire.

So profound was the utter joy from the world's impoverished and oppressed that the NYSE shot up 666 points its largest one day gain in history. "Everyone on the planet wants to speed the departure of us white devils to other planets. So much so that they are capitulating to every aspect of Globalization if that will help raise capital that can be used by us to go the fuck away," said the neo=Georgian poet, Dana Gioia.

"They're almost too happy to see us go," snorted pundit Bill O'Reilly on his O'Reilly Report. "Well, I intend to make these last two generations with Planet Honkey miserable for every race, religion and creed I hate and that's a long list. Then I'm going to spend the rest of my days laughing while I relax in my olympic size pool orbiting on a rock somewhere within the gravitational suck of Alpha Centauri."(You can send a gift of money to the "Send Bill O'Reilly Into Space ASAP" by calling Fox News.)

More...

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 05, 03 | 1:32 am | Profile

[0] comments (18725 views) |  link

Thu Dec 04, 2003

How 'bout they both open their sealed Governor papers at the same time and we'll the one that doesn't go to jail gets to be Prez for four years?

Bush's Party Takes Direct Aim at Howard Dean
Reuters

Wednesday 03 December 2003

WASHINGTON - President Bush's Republican Party took direct aim at former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean on Wednesday in one of the party's strongest attacks on an individual Democratic candidate for president this campaign season.
More...

Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 04, 03 | 5:47 pm | Profile

[0] comments (8656 views) |  link

National Review backs Dean

image

The latest magazine cover.

Posted by: Jacques Vanderdreschd on Dec 04, 03 | 10:44 am | Profile

[8] comments (7285 views) |  link

Wed Dec 03, 2003

We Hold These Truths

Pro-Life and Anti-War

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 03, 03 | 11:12 pm | Profile

[10] comments (7117 views) |  link

Geneva Initiative

The following are comments about the Geneva Initiative by By Yitzhak Frankenthal, who founded the 'Parents Circle'.



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Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 03, 03 | 7:39 pm | Profile

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Those dirty protesters should learn to comply with reasonable requests


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Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 03, 03 | 5:28 pm | Profile

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Another "Fair and Balanced" Cartoon for Y'all


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Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 03, 03 | 5:24 pm | Profile

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Jason and Laura's Wedding

Jason and Laura's Wedding - some photos I took

Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 03, 03 | 3:11 pm | Profile

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"ALBA"? What kinda accronym is that?

Chavez Versus The Free Trade Zombies Of The Americas
by Greg Palast; December 03, 2003

It's as if they were locked in a crypt for the last ten years. The finance ministers of every Latin American nation last week signed on to a resolution in principle to join the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), the hemispheric expansion of NAFTA.

The walking corpse of Argentina's economy was there, as well as the long-deceased body of Ecuador and several other South American nations whose economies were long ago murdered and buried by the free trade and free market nostrums of the World Bank and the IMF.

Yet on they came. Stiff-legged, covered in rotting bandages, the official zombies marched to Miami to pledge, one and all, to sign on for their next dose of free market poison.

Every nation but one: Venezuela, the single and solitary nation to say "no thanks" at Miami's treaty of the living dead economies.
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Posted by: Slothrop on Dec 03, 03 | 11:35 am | Profile

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Tue Dec 02, 2003

MoveOn

MoveOn moves up

O'Reilly, DeLay and the GOP have declared war on it. But the online citizen movement grows richer and stronger by the day.

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By Michelle Goldberg

Dec. 1, 2003  |  Bill O'Reilly wants its nonprofit status revoked. Republican National Committee chairman Ed Gillespie sees it as part of the "Democrat plan to subvert campaign finance laws." House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's office plays phone pranks on its staffers. A piece in David Horowitz's FrontPage Magazine worries: "It could bypass the mainstream media, sneak around campaign spending limits, and become its own powerful channel for Leftist communication, indoctrination and mobilization."

Clearly, MoveOn.org has arrived.

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Posted by: evil-barry on Dec 02, 03 | 2:55 pm | Profile

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Mon Dec 01, 2003

druggedata


http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/02/science/02ECST.html More...

Posted by: pibor on Dec 01, 03 | 5:24 pm | Profile

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