Wednesday, December 28, 2011

African Rape is America’s Porn

Here we go again. The New York Times has a story today about rape in war torn Somalia.

It is difficult to critique this sort of journalism without seeming to be blasé about sexual assault. I am not at all uncaring about rape survivors here or abroad, but I am very wary of the media showing interest in women of color only when they are rape victims and the circumstances permit wholesale finger pointing at all black people. The Times has never given its readers a true history of the Somalia conflict, which is a direct result of American intervention.

The al-Shabab are not some crazed group of so-called Islamists. They are the resistance fighting against the U.S. instigated Ethiopian incursion into their country. Somalia has been destroyed by the United States and that destruction has gone largely unreported. All of that country’s terrors, from rape to starvation, can be laid at Uncle Sam’s door step.

I wrote about this phenomenon of phony concern for black women in my column last year.

“Nothing excites the imaginations of Americans like lurid tales of sexual perversion among black people. The corporate media leap upon any and every report of sexual assault committed among black people with a peculiar delight. The scene of the crime may be Darfur, the Congo or Haiti, but the stories always create a narrative of animalistic Africans and give the impression that entire groups of people should not be considered human beings.”

The comments from Times readers were true to form, calling Somali men animals, blaming Islam, and of course advocating for more U.S. terror under the guise of humanitarian intervention.

If New York Times reporters want to write about sexual assault, they don’t have to go all the way to Somalia. They might talk to police in any American jurisdiction or go to one of the 70 prisons located in the state of New York and talk to victims of rapes carried out by other prisoners or prison personnel.

Of course, writing about rape in America’s prisons would open a can of worms which most people would rather not see. It is far easier to point the finger at a faraway land populated by black people.

Anyone horrified by the stories of these crimes does not have to write a check to an NGO. A better course of action is demanding that the U.S. leave Somalia alone. Talk about a can of worms, we might actually have to make demands of the president and congress. Wringing our hands about a newspaper article is a lot easier.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Yes, America is Officially Fascist

Mr. Peace Prize winner and constitutional law professor just doesn't give a sh*t, neither do the Obamabots.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Black America Hits Rock Bottom

Black people are at the bottom of the heap. The median income of Americans is only $50,000 per year, but a mere $32,000 for African Americans.

The wealth gap is even worse. White median net worth is $113,000 but it is only $6,325 for latinos and $5,677 for blacks.

I had more to say in my column in Black Agenda Report today. Common Dreams linked to it too. Thanks for the shout out!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Yes, Virginia, there is an Occupy Harlem and they are conducting actions on the NYPD's horrendous Stop and Frisk policies.

obama libya

Friday, November 25, 2011

Waffle Maker Riot

The next time someone says that we simply must have Walmart here in New York City, I will think of this video. Actually we already have enough places where you can buy cheap sh*t. We don't need more inducements to moronic and frankly psychotic behavior.

Shoppers Trampled at a Target in Buffalo, New York

Today is Buy Nothing Day and this video explains why.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

George Washington Took His Slaves’ Teeth

I have always been told that George Washington had false teeth which were made of wood. Not true. Some were made of a variety of materials including elephant or walrus ivory which darkened over time and appeared to be wood. However nine of his teeth were taken from some of the 300 human beings he and his wife Martha owned, his slaves.

"The following year, in May of 1784, Washington paid several unnamed "Negroes," presumably Mount Vernon slaves, 122 shillings for nine teeth, slightly less than one-third the going rate advertised in the papers, "on acct. of the French Dentis[sic} Doctr. Lemay [sic]," almost certainly Le Moyer. Over the next four years, the dentist was a frequent and apparently favorite guest on the plantation. Whether the Mount Vernon slaves sold their teeth to the dentist for any patient who needed them or specifically for George Washington is unknown, although Washington's payment suggests that they were for his own use. Washington probably underwent the transplant procedure--"I confess I have been staggered in my belief in the efficacy of transplantion," he told Richard Varick, his friend and wartime clerk, in 1784--and thus it may well be that some of the human teeth implanted to improve his appearance, or used to manufacture his dentures, came from his own slaves."

I'll remember this fact the next time I'm told about honest Abe, I mean George. Whatever.

I hasten to add that even if the slaves were paid, the transaction could not have been made on an equal basis. I have been afraid to say no bosses who actually paid me for my labor. Besides, what would be the point of owning people if they actually had the right to refuse anything.

I can't write this without thinking of the pain these people endured, the physical punishments, separation from family, and as if that weren't bad enough they had their teeth yanked out too.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Give 'Em Hell Michael Avery!

Michael Avery is a professor at Suffolk University Law School in Massachusetts. When he and his colleagues were asked to send "care packages" to troops stationed abroad, he had plenty to say about it.

Simply put, Avery questioned the very ideal that one must support the military and its actions around the globe. Needless to say, he has created a firestorm of criticism.

I have been thinking a lot about these issues lately. I used to say that the Bush administration was fascist but I now realize I was wrong. We have a system which is headed faster and faster down the slope to being fascistic and it will be so whether a democrat or a republican is president. As Avery points out, the Obama administration is Bush the sequel when it comes to diminishing our legal rights and promoting a national security state.

After a determined internet search I found Avery's email address and told him that I and many others support him. I am reluctant to reveal that address because I fear that he will get a lot more hate than love These are his words in an email sent to his colleagues.

"I think is is shameful that it is perceived as legitimate to solicit in an academic institution for support for men and women who have gone overseas to kill other human beings. I understand that there is residual sympathy for service members, perhaps engendered by support for troops in World War II, or perhaps from when there was a draft and people with few resources to resist were involuntarily sent to battle. That sympathy is not particularly rational in today's world, however.

The United States may well be the most war prone country in the history of civilization. We have been at war two years out of three since the Cold War ended. We have 700 overseas military bases. What other country has any? In the last ten years we have squandered hundreds of billions of dollars in unnecessary foreign invasion. Those are dollars that could have been used for people who are losing their homes to the economic collapse, for education, to repair our infrastructure, or for any of a thousand better purposes than making war. And of course those hundreds of billions of dollars have gone for death and destruction.

Perhaps some of my colleagues will consider this to be an inappropriate political state. But of course the solicitation email was a political statement, although cast as support for student activities. The politics of that solicitation are that war is legitimate, perhaps inevitable, and that patriotic Americans should get behind our troops.

We need to be more mindful of what message we are sending as a school. Since Sept. 11 we have had perhaps the largest flag in New England hanging in our atrium. This is not a politically neutral act. Excessive patriotic zeal is a hallmark of national security states. It permits, indeed encourages, excesses in the name of national security, as we saw during the Bush administration, and which continue during the Obama administration.

Why do we continue to have this oversized flag in our lobby? Why are we sending support to the military instead of Americans who are losing their homes, malnourished, unable to get necessary medical care, and suffering from other consequences of poverty? As a university, we should debate these questions, not remain on automatic pilot in support of the war agenda."

Mr. Avery's punishment has yet to begin. I'm sure that the university will be forced to take him to task or fire him, or burn him at the stake and then cut out his tongue. I also predict that some eager reporter will ask the Obama administration to comment.

Mr. Constitutional Law Professor killer in chief will no doubt toss Avery under the back wheels of a very big bus. Count on it.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Best Gaddafi Quote Ever

“We fear that Obama will feel that, because he is black with an inferiority complex, this will make him behave worse than the whites. This will be a tragedy. We tell him to be proud of himself as a black and feel that all Africa is behind him.”

Moammar Gaddafi said these words in 2008. I don’t know if they were translated from the Arabic or if he said it in English, which was not his first language.

In any case, Gaddafi had no reason that Obama would quite literally be the death of him, but his words were prescient. Africa is at Obama’s mercy, whether it is because of an inferiority complex isn’t clear. I don’t know that Obama is all that complicated. He is just ambitious and does what the system requires of him.

Obama and the Dems Will Cut Social Security

“The Democrats on the Super Committee want to significantly cut your Social Security and have offered to do it. The only thing really protecting your Social Security benefits from cuts right now is the Republican unwillingness to reach a deal that includes explicit tax increases.

There should be no doubt that your Social Security is in serious danger right now.  It has been in serious danger ever since the Super Committee was purposely created in such away to make it easier to cut the program.”  Firedog Lake

That’s right folks. You had better hope that John Boehner doesn’t come to the table. If he does, the democrats will be ready to throw you under the wheels of the bus.

I wrote about this in Black Agenda Report this week. Obama, with the help of Pelosi, Reid and company, has perfected right wing ideology and made it palatable to people who should be crying out in indignation. But they won’t say a word against the evil doing as long as it is committed by people with the letter D behind their names.

Black History at Mammoth Cave National Park

"Blacks were not allowed to be on the same tours with whites much less stay in the same hotel. Matt traveled to larger cities to appeal to the African American community to visit the world famous Mammoth Cave. Matt led Special tours so African Americans could experience the renowned Mammoth Cave. Matt and his wife, Zemmie, provided lodging and meals for black visitors at their home called the Bransford Resort. It was the first time in Mammoth Cave history the African American community could experience the same comforts and fascination of the cave white visitors had experienced for over a century."

I love the national park system. I have visited five national parks and numerous national park sites and I am always anxious to learn more about the role played by black people in the parks' history.

Today I came across information about Mammoth Cave national park in Kentucky. The first explorers of that cave system were enslaved people. Mammoth Cave is the largest cave system in the country and it is believed that there is still unexplored territory there.

Men like Stephen Bishop and Mat Basterson were enslaved and were leased out by their masters to lead tours. There are portions of Mammoth Cave which they discovered and which today's visitor has access to because of their curiosity and bravery. Read all about it here.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Is this what fascism looks like?


“It was from this aircraft carrier that some of the first assaults on Iraq were launched.  This ship supports what's happening in Afghanistan.

I think some of you may know because it's been reported that the men and women on the Carl Vinson were part of that critical mission to bring Osama bin Laden to justice.”  Barack Obama

I was completely creeped out by this image. It is a photograph of a basketball game played onboard the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson on Veterans Day. Veterans Day used to be a simple holiday in which we honored veterans of past wars. In fact, over the years it had become largely ignored as the population of veterans aged and dwindled.

That was before the United States embarked on its latest incarnation of empire and endless war. Now we are given a steady dose of militarism. There is no where we can escape and sports have been particularly contaminated with this noxious pro-military ideology.

I enjoy watching football because I like the sport. Now, viewers have to endure fly overs from fighter jets, enormous American flags, and military marching bands. It really makes me sick.

Yesterday I got even sicker when I read that the Michigan State and North Carolina college basketball teams would play a game on the Vinson, the vessel from which bin Laden’s dead body was dumped into the sea.

It isn’t an over statement to call this fascistic. Constant displays of patriotism are among the universally agreed upon criteria of fascism. Having the president attend this event makes it all but official.

I used to call the Bush administration fascistic because of the stolen election, invasion of Iraq and assault on civil liberties. Obama was genuinely elected but he embarked on a Bushian propaganda effort to demonize Moammar Gaddafi and pave the way for popular support of the assault on the Libyan people. He has expanded war on the entire African continent and has even argued, via a secret white house panel, that he has the right to murder U.S. citizens.

So the F word is coming back out of my closet. The Fascism Watch returns.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

The Return of Arthur Silber

“There sits a tyrant holding fettered four millions of slaves; here comes their heroic liberator. This most hypocritical and diabolical government looks up from its seat on the gasping four millions, and inquires with an assumption of innocence: 'What do you assault me for? Am I not an honest man? Cease agitation on this subject, or I will make a slave of you, too, or else hang you. '”

Henry David Thoreau, A Plea for Captain John Brown

He is back! Arthur Silber hadn't posted in several months, and knowing of his precarious health, I was quite worried about him.

Arthur recently suffered the loss of Wendy, one of his dear cats, but he is now writing again. He says that he intends to write about Thoreau's "A Plea for John Brown." I can hardly wait to read what Arthur has to say, so I took a look at the essay. John Brown is a fascinating man, and one of America's great heroes. Arthur is also one of my heroes, so I am anxious to discover what he has to say about the great liberator.

I think the above quote applies not only to a slave holding United States, but to a nation now on the precipice of financial collapse and imperial ruin. Cease agitating, or you'll be done away with.

Remember Moammar Gaddafi. He wouldn't bend to the west's will, and he was savagely executed. Julian Assange is also in danger. He will be extradited to Sweden and probably then to the United States. He wouldn't cease agitating and he will be treated accordingly.

There is nothing innocent about the United States, but it struts about and preens as if it were a model of moral rectitude. Anyone who argues otherwise is in grave danger.

I am, as always, looking forward to what Arthur has to say in the future.

Libyan Atrocities

Just in case you haven't been following the horror the west brought upon Libya, here is a photo which is worth one thousand words. These people were all killed by the National Transitional Council forces, you know, the good people our government supported.

Libya Propaganda Timeline

How did it happen? How did the United States and NATO garner popular support for the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi and the destruction of Libya? They did it by lying of course, but the lies were well placed and sinister. Soldiers with viagra, impending blood baths, the list of lurid fabrications knew no bounds. No stones were left unturned in the propaganda pile-on.

Maximilian Forte gives a blow by blow description of the lies told by our government, al-Jazeera, the BBC, the International Criminal Court, and Human Rights Watch, to name just a few, which gave world wide support to unspeakable acts.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Finance Capital is the Enemy, and the Address is Wall Street

Words of the week from Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report

"The young people that began this Occupation Movement less than two months ago are not 'us,' but they have done all of us a great service. They have shouted out the name and address of the enemy – the enemy of all humanity. The enemy’s name is Finance Capital, and the address is Wall Street, and that is the truth.

But there are some who try to confuse our folks about this essential truth. They want to obscure the fact that Finance Capital is the greatest danger to everyone on this planet, from those of us sitting right here in this church, to the Black people of Libya who are being hunted down like animals, this very evening, by forces that the U.S. Government has empowered.

Finance Capital – Wall Street – wants to seize and corner every market and every resource in the world, from the land that we stand on here in Harlem, to the oil under the land, in Libya. We need to be focused on that central truth.

We need to stop listening to those who say we shouldn’t be associating with those white Occupation people; that those white kids don’t speak for us.

Well, that’s right. They don’t speak for us; we have to speak for ourselves. Their presence downtown is a challenge to us to speak up against a Wall Street that has done more damage to Black America than to anyone else in the country.

That is our obligation, and we must meet it. We owe that to the ancestors."

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Libyan Support for Gaddafi

These quotes are from a Counterpunch article I read today. It reminded me how badly misinformed we are about the important issues of the day. The corporate media keep us in a state of "perfect disinformation" as Paul Craig Roberts says. We know nothing about Libya, despite the fact that hours of broadcasting have been dedicated to this story. All we hear is how horrible Gaddafi was and how much Libyans hated him and how badly they wanted to be bombed by NATO in order to be saved by the west.

Occasionally we do hear a different point of view. A point of view not dependent upon corporate media or the desire to maintain access with the white house.

"When the bodies were first exhibited curious people came and some said bad insults. But by the next day the atmosphere has completely changed. People came to honor Colonel Gadhafi for his courage in dying for what he believed was best for Libya and that was to keep Libya free from colonialism. I don’t believe the media is accurately reporting this."

“We also visited the Mahari Hotel in Sirte where we saw more than 50 bodies of Gadaffi supporters. Some had their hands behind them bound by plastic handcuffs and were executed at close range. Others had been taken from hospital beds and murdered. This crime is just one more example of the lies of the TNC and NATO. NATO forces commanded and controlled their rebels and knew what they have been doing. NATO is responsible for destroying much of our country and for what will surely happen in the coming days.”

Now the real resistance will begin! The Libyan people are now even surer than they were during this summer that the TNC sold our country to the NATO colonial countries."

Read the whole story. It is liberating to take the red pill.

Low Black Turn Out in 2012, Despite Obama Love

When I went to my polling place in 2008, I saw a line that went out the door, down the block, and around the corner. Even in a presidential election year I had never witnessed such a sight.

I assumed that many of the people waiting to vote were going through this process for the first time. It wasn't really surprising, I had heard many people say that they were excited at the prospect of seeing a black president, something they never thought would happen.

But I don't care what they tell a New York Times reporter, the never bothered to vote before 2008 crowd will not be back in 2012. Those of us in the black community who publicly criticize Obama are few, but many Obama lovers will go back to their disengagement. In 2008 he won red states like Indiana and North Carolina because of high black turn out. That won't happen again.

Black people won't bad mouth him, and they won't vote for republicans, but the people who have lost jobs and homes and hope won't be standing on long lines to vote in 2012. They will not verbalize their disillusionment, but they will stay home.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Obama Tells More Lies About Gaddafi

It was bad enough that the Obama administration is responsible for Moammar Gaddafi's gruesome end at the hands of a lynch mob. Now they have to heap lies upon his mutilated corpse. The New York Times reports that the "rebel" government, Obama's own puppets, have found a treasure trove of documents linking Gaddafi to a plot to topple the Iraqi government.

It is utterly absurd that Gaddafi would have any reason to overthrow the Iraqi government, and even if he did, why would he leave written evidence of such a plot? No matter. The bizarre assertion will be accepted by the corporate media, "serious" pundits, members of congress and most Americans.

Obama's lies about Iran and Libya are as bad as Bush's tales of yellow cake and aluminum tubes which supposedly proved that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. If the media and congress react to Obama's lies in the same way they did about Bush's, then we are headed for more war.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Wikileaks Hastened End of U.S. Occupation

Barack Obama wanted to keep some troops in Iraq past the 2011 deadline, but he also wanted those troops to have immunity from Iraqi prosecution. He might have worked out this deal with prime minister al-Maliki, but a Wikileaks revelation may have scuttled the back room deal. In 2006, "U.S. troops executed at least 10 Iraqi civilians, including a woman in her 70s and a 5-month old infant, then called in an airstrike to destroy the evidence, during a controversial 2006 incident in the central Iraqi town of Ishaqi."

There were numerous atrocities committed during the eight year long occupation, but this particular incident was revealed in the release of a Wikileaks cable and the resulting revulsion made it impossible for business as usual to take place.

If this revelation did keep the U.S. from continuing its occupation, the two men most responsible for ending the terror which America inflicted on Iraq are Julian Assange and Bradley Manning. Manning has been imprisoned without trial for over one year. He has not been brought to trial and yet president Obama has declared him guilty. Julian Assange will probably be extradited to Sweden to face sexual assault charges from the UK and will likely then be extradited to the United States.

These two heroes should be recipients of the nobel peace prize instead of Barack Obama, instead they have been caught in the maw of American law. Why should Moammar Gaddafi have been killed by a lynch mob when George Bush and Tony Blair live without fear of prosecution? He didn't do anything that American and European leaders haven't done, yet he was summarily executed. Bush, Blair and now Obama, Cameron and Sarkozy have killed thousands. They will be lionized, make millions when they leave office, and be allowed to die peacefully in their beds.

There is no justice in this world.

Friday, October 21, 2011

I Repeat, Bush Agreed to Leave Iraq by the End of 2011

Who can forget the wonderful moment when journalist Muntader al-Zaidi threw his shoe at President Bush? It was December 14, 2008 and Bush appeared in Baghdad with Prime Minister al-Maliki to highlight the security agreement which included a pledge for the U.S. to remove its troops by
December 31, 2011.

Al-Zaidi was having none of it, and hurled one of the best insults of all time. “This is the farewell kiss, you dog.”

In any case, I write this to repeat what I said earlier. Obama is doing nothing more than what he was obligated to do by his predecessor.
Bush Signed the Agreement to Get Troops Out of Iraq by the End of 2011

Obama should get no credit for taking combat troops out of Iraq. In 2008, the Bush administration signed a Status of Forces Agreement, SOFA, to get combat troops out by the end of 2011. Obama had no choice but to abide by this agreement. Also, like his predecessor, he is trying to finagle ways to keep military “advisers” in that country, in this case up to 5,000 military contractors. Obama has as much teflon as Reagan, getting credit when he deserves none.

Nothing to see here, keep it moving.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Obama Kills Again

The peace prize laureate has struck again. It was only a matter of time before Muammar Gaddafi would be killed. As always, my Black Agenda Report colleague Glen Ford was incredibly prescient when he said back in February that the Libyan president was “on the outs.” Actually that turned out to be an under statement, as Gaddafi is now very much dead.

There is nothing good, absolutely nothing good about the United States and NATO deciding to over throw a sovereign government. It is up to people throughout the world to have all the rights of self-determination. They must decide for themselves how or if they want to change a government. Not that the west really cares about who is or isn’t cruel to their own countrymen and women. The humanitarian power grab is the first line of defense in explaining the unspeakable. Now Libya’s oil is ripe for western plunder. On the outs indeed.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Demand the End of Wall Street

“There is no reforming Wall Street, only its dismantling and simultaneous replacement by public institutions for allocating capital for human needs and development.”
Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report

As usual, Glen gets to the heart of the matter. The question of what Occupy Wall Street should demand is more complicated than most people are willing to acknowledge. Capitalism has been in crisis for quite some time, and the post-2008 bail outs have proven that it is a system on life support. TARP and the federal reserve have not resuscitated the patient despite giving it CPR, that is to say public money, over and over again. Glen tells us what we must do rather than what we must demand because, “. . . there is no point in demanding anything from your enemy, except that he drop dead in a hurry.”

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Chris Floyd on Occupy Wall Street

I started out as a skeptic. I wanted Occupy Wall Street to come up with an agenda, and to dump the democrats once and for all. I have been writing, speaking and thinking about issues for a long time now, and I realize that I am ahead of other people who are new at social action.

I have had second thoughts after attending the Times Square rally last week. I saw and felt the energy, and yes the joy created by people who are taking the first steps to doing something different. Chris Floyd, one of my favorite bloggers, puts it this way.

"It seems to me that the whole point of the Occupy movement, in its multiplicity of forms, is to MAKE A START. To not simply bow the head and bend the knee, and give up and say, Oh Lordy, the Man is too powerful for me, He controls everything, there's nothing anyone can do. The point, it seems to me, is just to show up and stand up and say out loud, as Thoreau said, "We disassociate ourselves from this rigged, corrupt, immoral system."

Isn't this what dissidents have been urging people to do for years now? I know this site has been full of commenters -- and my own blog posts -- calling for something exactly like this. Saying: Do it individually, if you have to, do it en masse -- but DO SOMETHING! Stand up, speak out and disassociate yourself from all this evil. Start looking for other ways: try this, try that, try the other, and if all that fails, try something else -- but DO SOMETHING."

I am still concerned about the lack of specificity and I'm not comfortable with the slow and amorphous nature of the consensus method of having discussions. Still I am glad that this movement has begun. I have to remember that I started out just wanting to end a war. I never thought I would be proudly saying that I have no intention of voting for another democratic president. I had to start somewhere.
Diet Soap Podcast

One of my favorite things to do is appear on Doug Lain's Diet Soap Podcast. This week we talked about Occupy Wall Street and the Obama administration threats against Iran. Listen up. It is a great way to spend an hour.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Protest in Times Square Last Night

I was at Times Square last night as part of the Occupy Wall Street protest. I didn't see this particular incident, but there were nearly as many police as protesters. It was ironic, being in the seat of consumption and corporate promotion, but I guess that made it a great location.

I'm not sure what will become of OWS. I have concerns because their anger is a bit diffuse to me. The organization by consensus mode is not conducive for formulating a list of concrete demands, which is the foundation of all successful mass movements.

I think those of us who have ideas about where OWS should go ought to go and get involved. I have to put myself on the line a bit and make good on my own ideals just like the OWS organizers have done.
New York State Prison Population Declines

First the good news. New York state's prison population has dropped by almost 20% since 2000. The end of the Rockefeller drug laws, which gave judges no discretion in handing down some of the harshest sentences in the nation, has not only decreased the state's prison population, but decreased the rates of racial disparities as well.

These statistics prove that the war on drugs was meant to do nothing more than put as many black people behind bars as possible. Sentences were driven by drug convictions, and the drop in those convictions results in few people in jail. Now there are roughly 7,700 fewer black people in New York prisons than there were in 2000.

The bad news is that the United States still has more than 2 million people in jails and prisons, a larger number than any other nation. Budgetary constraints are forcing some states to release prisoners early, but every state is not like New York. Despite an overall drop in crime, some states continue to build prisons, many of them privately owned and with an obvious interest in putting and keeping more people behind bars. The New Jim Crow is still alive and well, but successes must be noted.

Friday, October 14, 2011

War Criminal President

I have been privileged to read the wonderful work of Arthur Silber for some years now. His blog, Power of Narrative, is one of my all time favorites. Despite the fact that I have never actually met Arthur, I consider him to be a mentor of mine. His words crystallized all that I had been thinking about the state of our country and the world. His analysis is clear and simple, we have a ruling class, and they use the quadrennial electoral extravaganza to fool us into thinking that we actually have democracy.

Back in 2008 when all but a handful of us collapsed like love sick groupies for Barack Obama, Silber was one of a group of writers who as they say, had Obama's number. As Silber put it, the choice of McCain or Obama was nothing but a choice of war criminals. He argued in favor of a McCain victory because progressives, in their faux activism, might oppose his policies. Silver was correct in his assessment. Progressives stood down when Obama won, and have accepted cuts to entitlements, endless war, and the biggest transfer of public wealth to the private sector ever in history.

In just the past few months, Obama assassinated Osama bin Laden, over threw the Libyan government, assassinated Anwar al-Awlaki and is now threatening Iran. The Iran threat has been ratcheted up by yet another terror plot which would never have existed if the FBI hadn't created it. This time we are told that Iranians made a pact with Mexican drug dealers to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. It is psy-ops at its worst, or perhaps its best, depending on how one looks at it.

All of the usual "serious" suspects, from establishment think tanks to wimpy pundits, accept this bizarre tale uncritically. Obama is doing with Iran what he did with Libya, getting NATO to co-sign his killing spree. The British foreign secretary had this to say, presumably with a straight face. The plot "would appear to constitute a major escalation in Iran’s sponsorship of terrorism outside its borders.” The New York Times repeats what the administration says, what better way to maintain its access.

When Obama assassinated al-Awlaki, the administration leaked classified information to the Times in order to justify its actions. I suppose the leakers should be treated like Bradley Manning, who is accused of a less serious release of classified information.

Obama has gotten away with policies that the right wing only dreamed about. Ronald Reagan gave up his efforts to kill Gaddafi and Bush demurred on making war against Iran. Bush wanted to cut social security, but democratic outcry made it impossible. No so with Obama, who has gotten his party to go along with his dirty deeds. John McCain may have sung Bomb Bomb Iran, but it will be Obama who gets away with carrying out the crime.

When he does, what will the peace movement do? It is clear that the protests leading up to the invasion of Iraq were more anti-Bush and anti-republican than they were truly anti-war. Will the same people who joined me in the streets of New York in 2003 join me again when bombs fall on Tehran or Isfahan?

The NATO backed "rebels" in Libya are slaughtering black people with impunity, a modern day lynch mob paid with cold hard cash from the west. Our voices are muted, and black Americans continue making themselves politically irrelevant by saying nothing about Obama's policies, even one as evil as this which targets a black population.

Today the administration announced that 100 American troops are headed to Uganda on a "humanitarian" mission. The missions are always humanitarian but they end up the same way, expanding imperialism and creating misery.

So my friend Arthur Silber was right. We have a war criminal at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and he will probably be there until January 2017, at which time he will be succeeded by another one.

Arthur has been in ill health and hasn't posted since August. I wish him well, mostly because he is a friend, but also because we need to hear from him at this time.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Obama Shows His Ass (and that is good news)

There are certainly more articulate ways of expressing myself, but why beat around the bush? When Barack Obama spoke at the Congressional Black Caucus annual event this weekend he showed himself to be the pompous jackass that he has always been.

"I expect all of you to march with me and press on. Take off your bedroom slippers, put on your marching shoes. Shake it off. Stop complaining, stop grumbling, stop crying. We are going to press on. We’ve got work to do, CBC."

While this display of condescension initially made me angry, I now have second thoughts. I am glad that Obama insulted black people for the 100th time.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters, always among my favorites, made the case this way. She is savvy and knows that she will alienate her constituents if she directly criticizes Obama. She said as much publicly at a Detroit town hall.

" 'We don't put pressure on the president,' said Waters. 'Let me tell you why. We don't put pressure on the president because ya'll love the president. You love the president. You're very have a black man [in the White House] ...First time in the history of the United States of America. If we go after the president too hard, you're going after us... When you tell us it's alright and you unleash us and you tell us you're ready for us to have this conversation, we're ready to have the conversation.' "

Obama has now given Waters and others the cover they need in order to take him on.

“ 'I found that language a bit curious because the president spoke to the Hispanic Caucus and certainly they are pushing him on immigration and despite the fact that he's appointed [Justice Sonia] Sotomayor to the Supreme Court, he has an office for excellence in Hispanic education right in the White House, they’re still pushing him and he certainly didn’t tell them to stop complaining,' she said.

'And he never would say that to the gay and lesbian community who really pushed him on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Or even in a speech to AIPAC, he would never say to the Jewish community ‘stop complaining’ about Israel.' ”

I have always suspected that the huge black voter turn out from November 2008 would not be repeated in 2012. We have already seen that turn out in elections held since 2008 has been very low. Despite all the talk of renewed energy and interest in politics, the truth is far simpler. Black people were excited to see a black president and not excited about much else.

Now they have seen one and that initial thrill has gone. Obama has not even made token efforts to help black people and regardless of how much his critics are despised, his lack of action is noted and will have consequences. Most black people will not directly and openly criticize Obama, they will just stay home next November and I don't think that is a bad thing. The democrats have proven themselves to be no friends of black people, of labor or of the left in general. It is time for them to go. If we are going to have a president willing to cut social security, we may as well have a republican anyway.

Congresswoman Waters should cheer up. She can consider herself "unleashed."

Saturday, September 03, 2011

9/11 Conspiracy

"That’s the real political world, in which Giuliani and others have never been held accountable. The conspiracists disdained the real world because they wanted to promote Bush, Cheney and the Neo-Cons to an elevated status as the Arch Demons of American history, instead of being just one more team running the American empire, a team of more than usual stupidity and incompetence (characteristics I personally favor in imperial leaders)." - Alexander Cockburn

No, there was no 9/11 conspiracy and Cockburn pretty much proves it. He answers the questions the "truthers" have raised and makes it easier to stomach the dreaded 9/11 anniversary celebrations. Yes, there are logical explanations for the towers falling, for WTC7 to appear to implode and yes a plane did hit the pentagon.

Now about that Israeli moving company...

Sunday, August 21, 2011

"We don't know why on this trip that he [Obama] is on the United States now why he is not in any black communities."
Give him hell Maxine!
Does Obama Believe in Global Warming?

"Global warming caused by burning fossil fuels is melting the Arctic's ice. The melting of that ice makes it possible to exploit the region's reserves of fossil fuels, which will contribute even more to warming of the Earth's temperature.

And, remember, we will be trashing the Arctic for, at best, three years worth of oil."

Randolph Holhut

Liberal snootiness and snobbery is really and truly making me sick. These people care nothing about issues or ideology and will run like sclalded dogs rather than wage a political fight against the ruling classes. It makes sense I suppose. They don't call them rulers for nothing.

This week republican presidential candidate John Huntsman made news because he says that global warming is a fact. His rivals, most prominently Texas governor Rick Perry, say that it is unproven theory.

Progressives watch and laugh and stick their noses high in the air. They have yet another chance to proclaim their intellectual and moral superiority over conservatives.

Of course, this would have been a perfect week to point out that president Obama, just like Rick Perry, could give a rat's backside about global warming. The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has given preliminary approval for Royal Dutch Shell to begin drilling in the Alaskan arctic next year. Yes, I know, the EPA and Fish and Wildlife and heaven only knows who else must also agree. But seriously, do you really think that one agency said yes without knowing what the boss, Obama, wants the rest of them to do?

Are memories so short that the BP disaster in the gulf last year has been forgotten already? It took BP five months to figure out how to resolve the Deep Water Horizon disaster and the gulf is still paying the price.

Obviously every living creature on earth is paying the price for global warming. More fossil fuel accelerates the dangers and drilling in the arctic ocean is needlessly dangerous. But never mind. Perry is an ignoramous and Michelle Bachmann is stupid, so we need an ivy league smarty pants to send us on the road to hell. We'll feel better knowing that a constitutional law professor sent us there.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

The United States Starves Somalia

The New York Times published a photo of a starving Somalian child in today's edition of that newspaper. As expected, the photo has elicited comment and deep emotion, as it should. Unfortunately, the Times headline states that the Shabab, Somalia's resistance group, is responsible for the starvation. What a difference one year makes. In February 2010 the Times said the following. "U.N. Officials Assail U.S. On Limiting Somali Aid ."

It is the United States which instigated Ethiopia's invasion of Somalia, destroying that country and killing thousands of people. Black Agenda Report has done great reporting on how the U.S. and Ethiopia are deliberately starving Somalians. Chris Floyd has also reported a story which has largely been ignored.

Don't believe anything our government says about its actions abroad. As in all other ways, the Obama administration continues the very worst policies of the Bush regime, and killing Somalians is no exception.

Quote of the Week

"The Tea Party held America hostage during "the debt debate"? No, you fool, you idiot; fucking rich people did it. The Tea Party is just some shit they cooked up to keep you busy, to keep you fuming at each other while they steal your tooth fairy money and grandma's dentures. Every policy that you abhor and mistakenly ascribe to the ersatz conservative revanchism of the so-called tea-party movement is a willful policy of oligarchic centralism with the end goal of extracting every last red cent from every last human being on the earth.

Yea verily, I have returned unto you to put it straight to yinz: there is no tea party; there are no Democrats; there is no America. There is only global capital. There is no keeping American competitive for the future against the Chinese children of the math-science learning gap to win tomorrow today with the power of innovation. There is a single transnational elite whose allegiance is to itself. They would've fucked you on Saturday; they'll fuck you next Wednesday instead. There was no debt crisis. THERE IS NO DEBT CEILING. You are like prisoners in a concentration camp, tearing each other apart over crusts of bread. The guards check their rifles. The kommandant shtups his mistress. The carrion birds circle against the concrete sky.

You must destroy the rich."
- Who is Ioz?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Good News, Boehner Walks

Hallelujah! Boehner left the budget talks. Why is this good news? Glen Ford explained in Black Agenda Report.

"In other words, when the debt-limit showdown arrives, pray for gridlock, which would at least mean there is still resistance to Republican extortion."

So cheer up! Obama can't, in Glen's words, ". . . face down and brow-beat the remaining defenders of the social safety net in his own Democratic Party, who have always been the most immediate dangers to his grand center-right coalition."

Let's hope Boehner never comes back to the table.
Diet Soap Podcast

I love being a guest on Doug Lain's Diet Soap podcast. Here is the latest.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Debt Ceiling? Budget Cuts? Arthur Silber Explains It All

Arthur Silber is one of my favorite bloggers. His insights are amazing and make sense of the madness we are subjected to on a daily basis. Unfortunately, he has been very ill and doesn't always post on a regular basis. This week he is back and in great form.

While other commentators make the budget discussions seem confusing, Arthur spells it out simply. The ruling classes are behaving as they always do, terrifying us into accepting our own demise. Obama and his friends who have helped him raise $86 million, one full year before the election, are putting us in our places, convincing us that our safety net and anything else tht helps us ought to be expendable.

"Your national leaders are terrorists. Look on the bright side: they aren't shooting at you or sending drones into your neighborhood. Not yet. You still have that to look forward to, you fortunate idiots.

But most Americans can't or won't acknowledge the fact that terrorists rule them. The ruling class counts on that, and they're absolutely right. Are there millions of Americans camped out in Washington, or even thinking about it? Don't make me laugh."

Obama is telling us to accept cuts in medicaid and medicare so that he can make a deal with the republicans. He could fight back and tell his supporters he will defy the republicans, but that doesn't get you $86 million in the campaign bank and in any case, he isn't interested. Obama could give a sh*t. Or is that couldn't give a sh*t? Whatever.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Juneteenth and Modern Day Slavery

June 19th is Juneteenth. It celebrates the day in 1865 when news of emancipation reached Texas. Slaveholders conveniently came down with a case of mass amnesia and didn't relay the news of the Emancipation Proclamation issued in 1863 or of the wars ending two months earlier.

Today I came across an article in the Root about Juneteenth and modern day slavery. The authors quite rightly focused on the horrors of human trafficking which exists in this country and around the world. However, I assumed they would also make mention America's mass incarceration which is not only a form of slavery but which is largely targeted at black people.

The United States has both a greater percentage of its population behind bars and a greater number than any country on earth. There is no despot or dictator on earth who puts as many people in jail as this nation does. While black make up approximately ten percent of our population, we comprise half of all people in jail, prisons, or on parole or probation.

While the authors of the Root article may also suffer from a form of selective amnesia, there are thousands of people across the country dedicated to ending this scourge of our so-called civilization. Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow, is spreading the word about a group of clergy dedicated to raising awareness of this issue. The Samuel DeWitt Proctor Conference is dedicated to addressing many social justice issues and they are in the forefront of exposing and opposing mass incarceration.

It isn't really surprising that the Root has no interest in people who are under the jurisdiction of the criminal justice system. We have been propagandized into demonizing them as being unworthy of our attention or concern. The truth is that most of them have not committed violent crimes, but are victims of the forty year long war on drugs and the efforts to literally profit from it and other law enforcement measures. We have private prisons which exist to make a profit. Unemployed people are in jail for failing to pay child support and the child support enforcement system has itself become a privatized profit making venture.

Prisoners are subject to sexual and other violence in jails and prisons, are denied medical care and of the right to vote and to work once they are free. They are victims of involuntary servitude and we must never forget that fact.

Monday, June 13, 2011

I Told You So

Two weeks ago I wrote about The Obama Surveillance State in the Black Agenda Report. Today the New York Times revealed what I and others have been reporting.

The FBI has approved a new manual which expands the powers which agents can utilize in the field. They will be able to go through trash, infiltrate organizations, attend religious services, and conduct database searches without even opening an assessment, which beginning in 2008, were permissible without proof of illegal activity.

The bar gets lower and lower. As I reported last week, the illegal activities which Richard Nixon undertook against Daniel Ellsberg are now legal. The FBI can do anything it wants in order to investigate citizens without fear of committing any illegal activity.

Don't just blame George W. Bush. This new manual emerges from the Obama justice department.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Nixon's Crimes are Now Legal

In last week's Black Agenda Report I commented on the ever expanding surveillance state brought to us by Barack Obama. There is now a dangerous bipartisan consensus in support of the further erosion of our civil liberties. Don't believe me? Just read these words from Daniel Ellsberg, the man who leaked the Pentagon papers forty years ago.

"Richard Nixon, if he were alive today, might take bittersweet satisfaction to know that he was not the last smart president to prolong unjustifiably a senseless, unwinnable war, at great cost in human life. (And his aide Henry Kissinger was not the last American official to win an undeserved Nobel Peace Prize.)

He would probably also feel vindicated (and envious) that ALL the crimes he committed against me–which forced his resignation facing impeachment–are now legal.

That includes burglarizing my former psychoanalyst's office (for material to blackmail me into silence), warrantless wiretapping, using the CIA against an American citizen in the US, and authorizing a White House hit squad to "incapacitate me totally" (on the steps of the Capitol on May 3, 1971). All the above were to prevent me from exposing guilty secrets of his own administration that went beyond the Pentagon Papers. But under George W. Bush and Barack Obama,with the PATRIOT Act, the FISA Amendment Act, and (for the hit squad) President Obama's executive orders. they have all become legal

Contrast Ellsberg's treatment with tht of Bradley Manning, who is accused of giving government secrets to Wikileaks. Ellsberg's conviction was over turned while Manning has been imprisoned, tortured psychologically, and denied the right to have private visits. In essence, Obama is now worse than Richard Nixon.

I told you so.

The dirty trick that launched Anthony Weiner's career

The dirty trick that launched Anthony Weiner's career

I didn't know that Weiner used race baiting to win elective office. Forget the weiner double entendres. This is what counts.

Friday, June 03, 2011

I love Tom Tomorrow. I wrote on the same subject in this week’s Black Agenda Report.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin on a motorcycle, Sarah on a bus, in Iowa, in New Hampshire, with her kids! Will she? Won't she? Enough already.

Today a NATO air strike killed 15 people in Afghanistan. Obama has publicly pledge to kill people in Libya and force regime change, even if Libyans have to die from bombs or sanctions in the process. What difference would it make if she were president? Yes, she is dumb, but so what? Our smarty pants president does what anyone who wants to be president has to do.

I don't really care if liberal snobs hate Sarah Palin. We will end up with more of the same, giving public money to the private sector, and endless war, regardless of who lives in the white house in 2013. Sarah on a motorcycle. Whatever.
The First Memorial Day

David Blight is Yale professor of history who specializes in the study of the civil war era. In today's New York Times, he tells the story of the first memorial day which was celebrated in Charleston, South Carolina.

In the last year of the war, a race track in Charleston was used as an open air prison for union soldiers where more than 200 died and were buried in a mass grave. When the confederates evacuated the city, the newly freed people of Charleston reburied the dead properly and erected a high fence around the new cemetery. On May 1, 1865, they held a parade and ceremony at the site.

The procession was led by 3,000 black schoolchildren carrying armloads of roses and singing the Union marching song “John Brown’s Body.” Several hundred black women followed with baskets of flowers, wreaths and crosses. Then came black men marching in cadence, followed by contingents of Union infantrymen. Within the cemetery enclosure a black children’s choir sang “We’ll Rally Around the Flag,” the “Star-Spangled Banner” and spirituals before a series of black ministers read from the Bible.

After the dedication the crowd dispersed into the infield and did what many of us do on Memorial Day: enjoyed picnics, listened to speeches and watched soldiers drill. Among the full brigade of Union infantrymen participating were the famous 54th Massachusetts and the 34th and 104th United States Colored Troops, who performed a special double-columned march around the gravesite.

I now have a reason to celebrate memorial day. Aside from enjoying a long weekend and an opportunity to have a little more time for fun, I hate this holiday. I hate the celebration of war and death and the implied mandate to have more of both. The first memorial day was a commemoration of America's only good war, the war which killed chattel slavery.

Blight has once again done a great service to history lovers with his research. In 2008 he gave a series of lectures on the war and reconstruction which are available for free download. They are indispensable to anyone interested in that period of American history.

Happy memorial day.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

"USA" Chant on NYC Subway FAIL

New Yorkers do not like being screamed at while on the subway. It is especially true when some dumb ass asks if anyone with "a pair" wants to join in shouting something stupid. New York, it ain't Podunk.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Hold Me Barack!

This lady in Tuscaloosa may be worried about the tornado aftermath, but she wasn't going to miss her moment with the president. It didn't matter that his wife is standing right there. No one was going to get between her and her idol.
Tornado Disasters

TVA safely shut down its Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant in Alabama with emergency backup power this week, but power outages across the Tennessee Valley still left the utility without enough emergency sirens to warn nearby residents of potential safety problems at both Browns Ferry in Alabama and the Sequoyah Nuclear Plant near Soddy-Daisy.

In a notice to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission released Friday, TVA said more than 60 percent of its sirens around Browns Ferry and about a third of its warning sirens around Sequoyah were inoperable this week when electricity service was lost to the sirens following Wednesday’s tornadoes and wind storms.
- Times Free Press

Three days ago tornadoes tore across the southern states of Mississipi, Alabama, Georgia, Virginia and Kentucky. Last week tornados touched down and damaged St. Louis' Lambert Field international airport.

The tornados this week killed more than 300 people, mostly in Alabama. President Obama made the obligatory visit, shaking hands and making trite statements about devastation being really, really bad, and people sticking together and blah, blah, blah.

The facts are undeniable. These weather extremes are a result of human made climate change and even advanced countries like the U.S. do not have the means to care for people when natural disaster strikes. Nuclear reactors in Alabama were without power after the tornados and unable to warn residents should the need arise because alarm systems were without power, not to mention the reactors' cooling capacity. Sounds too much like Fukushima for my taste.

By the way, we can't talk about climate change denying republicans without mentioning how Barak Obama sabotaged the conference at Copenhagen. Mr. Environmentalist used his bully pulpit to force an agreement which allows world temperatures to rise two degrees. It doesn't sound like much, but that is the difference between having an ice age or not.

In any case, this country does not have a plan for dealing with large scale disaster and Alabamians and others will suffer like their fellow citizens during the Katrina crisis.

Monday, April 04, 2011

Citizenship duties or Drum Rhymes with Dumb

I have long believed that liberals are just as inclined as conservatives to give up their citizenship rights and duties as are the right wing. Most Americans like being led by a leader they love. The urge to exult in a cult of personality extends just as much to democrats as republicans. I pointed this out in my most recent Black Agenda Report column, "Attack of the Cruise Missile Liberals. " Yesterday Glenn Greenwald made an important discovery and just as importantly shared it with the world. These are the terrifying words of one Kevin Drum. "If it had been my call, I wouldn't have gone into Libya. But the reason I voted for Obama in 2008 is because I trust his judgment. And not in any merely abstract way, either: I mean that if he and I were in a room and disagreed about some issue on which I had any doubt at all, I'd literally trust his judgment over my own. I think he's smarter than me, better informed, better able to understand the consequences of his actions, and more farsighted." If Drum doesn't know that much, I don't know why he bothers to be a writer and commentator. He should keep his little two cents to himself. "Literally trust his judgment over my own?" Why doesn't Drum just shut up then and leave the field open to those of us who don't give some politician greater respect than we give ourselves. No, Barack Obama is not any smarter than I am, and he probably isn't smarter than anyone reading this either. I don't care how "smart" he may be, I have a right to say that my country should stop killing people all over this world. Obama isn't Einstein. He makes decisions the same way other presidents do. They listen to a small group of people who have been elevated by a system which rewards anyone who will go along with the status quo. I don't defer to secretaries of state or national security advisers or UN ambassadors either. Their titles and their credentials mean nothing to me. The world is in a mess because we give up our ability to think to a bunch of brown nosing bastards who put themselves and their needs above those of humanity. As for Drum, if you check out the link you will see that he back tracked, but that is only because he was called out and embarassed. He meant what he said the first time, he and the rest of the liberals who will assist Obama in sending us all down the path to hell.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Obama Loves Bill Kristol

“What’s the joke – they told me if I voted for McCain, we’d be going to war in a third Muslim country? I voted for McCain and we’re doing it.” – Bill Kristol

Monday, March 28, 2011

Obama’s War

“For those of you who were able to tear yourselves away from the tragedy in Japan and the US media’s gushing over Obama’s ‘humanitarian intervention’ in Libya, there was some horrifying news from Afghanistan which underscores Obama’s hypocrisy in the area of human rights and violence: the publication in German publication Der Spiegel of a batch of photographs taken by US soldiers with their ‘trophies’ — the corpses of Afghan civilians murdered by ‘kill teams’ who created artificial ‘combat situations’ in order to hunt human beings for sport.”

Mike Flugennock



Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How the U.S. Strikes Fear In Its Own People

“In fact, the only person to suffer any legal repercussions from that NSA scandal was someone named Thomas Tam, who was the mid-level Justice Department whistleblower who found out that this was taking place and was horrified by it and called Eric Lichtblau at the NYT and exposed that it had happened. The person who was the only one to suffer repercussions was the person who exposed the criminality. The criminals were fully immunized.”

Glenn Greenwald

A great read. Greenwald explain the importance of Wikileaks and how the incestuous relationship between the government and “journalists” endangers us all.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Tea Party and the Media - Glen Ford

Left Forum 2011

Glen Ford and I were panelists at this year's annual Left Forum in New York City. Here is Glen on a panel discussing the Tea Party and the media.

The entire discussion was interesting. Other panelists wrung their hands about the tea partiers and how we progressives should engage them. I for one have no interest whatever in engaging them or worrying about what they fear. No mystery here, they fear black people. Period.

The left need to concentrate on advocating for their own positions and not worry about unrepentant racists and reactionaries.

Overseer Obama Vexed by Disobedient Haitian Negro

OK, so America is once again killing huge numbers of people, this time in Libya. But there is a bright spot some where on the globe. Jean Bertrand Aristide returned to Haiti and the people who elected him president. Barry Obama tried to keep him in his South African exile, but to no avail.

(I stole this title from Distant Ocean.)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Diet Soap Podcast #95: Wisconsin Workers Struggle On

My Take on Wisconsin and Other Things

The Wisconsin union busting story is so two weeks ago. Now we are transfixed by the earthquake and tsunamis in Japan and the resulting nuclear accidents.

Before you forget though, check out my interview on the Diet Soap podcast with Douglas Lain.

Diet Soap Podcast #95: Wisconsin Workers Struggle On

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Dont Worry America Israels Behind You! Truth Hurts

Don't Worry U.S.A., Israel Is Behind You

Break it down brother Ayad!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Worthless Liberals

Aren't they always? The shallowness and indeed the corruption of liberal commentators has been on full display as events have unfolded in Egypt.

Atrios and Digby had no problems giving us their two cents when Bush was president, but now that the guy at the top of the greasy pole is a democrat, they can't find anything to say. They see that Obama has been sitting on the fence, trying to look like he wants change when he really does not.

"On Egypt I got nothin'." Really Atrios? Then it is time to close up shop and blog abut restaurants or fashion or travel and leave the commentary to the grown ups.

Hat tip to Chris Floyd

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Hyper Patriotism and the Super Bowl

I am trying to watch the super bowl pre-game show, but I have to be subjected to a recitation of the declaration of independence, and lots of people in uniform. Even Fox isn't stupid, they have football legends everyone loves and many people of color and women in uniform along with men, but it is just too jingoistic for me.

Sports are supposed to be non-partisan. People of any political view point should be able to watch the super bowl without getting a dose of hyper patriotism. Hopefully I can just watch the game now without any more political interruptions.

Obama Admits Rendition Guilt to Bill O'Reilly

I sat down to watch the Super Bowl pre-game show only to learn that I would have to sit through a Bill O'Reilly interview with the president. I could have turned to another channel but I was transfixed, sort of like seeing an accident by the side of the highway. Like Clinton before him, Obama dealt with a mid-term election setback by embracing the right wing. What better way to do so than to appear on Fox news on Super Bowl Sunday.

My favorite moment came when O'Reilly asked Obama about Egypt. I don't have a transcript (it happened just a few minutes ago), so I'm paraphrasing. O'Reilly said the following to the president.

"They know a lot of bad things about us, the renditions and all."

O'Reilly asked the same question twice, but Obama did not reply either time. What an admission of guilt, an indictment of American wrong doing. I have to note that it all started under Bush, but the U.S. has been sending terror suspects to Egypt and other countries where they are tortured by operatives of the host nation or by Americans themselves.

It may have started with Bush, but Obama has done nothing to stop it, and he admitted it on live television.

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Ronald Reagan Possessed by Demons

Must we really spend an entire year hearing about how wonderful Ronald Reagan was? It seems so, Obama established a Ronald Reagan Centennial Commission for that very purpose. Thanks for nothing Barack.

At any rate, it is important to remember that Reagan was a truly awful president who ruined this country and the world. The growing income inequality and American empire building can all be laid at his door step.

These are the words of Miguel D'Escoto, foreign minister of Nicaragua when Reagan made war against that nation.

More perhaps than any other U.S. President, Reagan convinced many around the world that the U.S. is a fraud, a big lie. Not only was it not democratic, but in fact the greatest enemy of the right of self-determination of peoples. Reagan, as you mentioned just a few minutes ago, was known as the great communicator, and I believe that that is true only if one believes that to be a great communicator means to be a good liar. That he was for sure. He could proclaim the biggest lies without even as much as blinking an eyelash. Hearing him talk about how we were supposedly persecuting Jews and burning down non-existent synagogues, I was led to believe really, that Reagan was possessed by demons. Frankly, I do believe Reagan at that time as much as Bush today was indeed possessed by the demons of manifest destiny.

That pretty much says it all.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Happy King Day!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Liberals Get Their Groove On

“Jared Loughner gave liberals something they desperately needed: a political distraction, and as an added bonus, a platform from which to proclaim their superior values. They haven't had such a gift since Oklahoma City. Prizes like this are rare, and liberals will rub it out long after the coating's worn off, cheap tin exposed to toxic air.” – Dennis Perrin

I wrote a post about the shooting of Congresswoman Giffords in Tucson, Arizona. I later deleted it because I didn’t think I made any points that millions of other people hadn’t already.

Yes, Arizona is a hell hole at the center of right wing nut land. Yes, Gabrielle Giffords was targeted for defeat by Sarah Palin and other tea partiers who are just shy of a diagnosis of psychosis.

But our entire country is a hell hole. Obama lovers are as guilty as tea partiers of being blood thirsty. Our president says he can kill citizens and liberals and the courts say he is right. Because he is from the right side of the elite tracks he can kill indiscriminately and still get a nobel prize for peace. Meanwhile, babies in Fallujah, Iraq are being born with birth defects because of America’s chemical weapons and none of the snooty liberal class can manage to utter one word against this continuing terrorism.

The real story is that there is no story,  only a change in political fortune for Sarah Palin, who is pretty much toast as a presidential candidate. Obama is sitting pretty. His worshippers love him even more, and will do even less to oppose his terrible policies. We used to say that Ronald Reagan had teflon, but he had nothing on Barack Obama, who is now in the cat bird seat because of a schizophrenic college dropout in Tucson.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Concerned Coalition for Prisoners Rights Press Conf 2011-01-06

Prisoner Rights in Georgia

You wouldn't know it if you only read the corporate media, but Georgia prison inmates recently went on a work strike to protest lack of medical care, abuse, and slave labor.

The United States has more of its population behind bars than any other country on earth, and the worst punishments are meted out to black people. We have The New Jim Crow and it has been privatized. Prisoners are just another commodity, cogs in the system's wheel. New York State is no different. Women at the Bedford Hills prison work for the Department of Motor Vehicles and can make up to $1.14. Up to? That means some make even less.

Mass incarceration is one of the worst injustices taking place in this country. Please pay attention to this story and spread the word as much as possible.