29 September 2010

Terrorist Threat Has Roots in U.S. Policy by Sheldon Richman

by Sheldon Richman, September 28, 2010
“While al-Qaeda continues to threaten America directly, it also inspires its affiliates and other groups and individuals who share its violent ideology.... Homegrown terrorists represent a new and changing facet of the terrorist threat. To be clear, by ‘homegrown,’ I mean terrorist operatives who are U.S. persons and who were radicalized in the United States....”

With those words Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano updated Congress on America’s perilous condition. She wasn’t quite accurate, however.

It is not al-Qaeda that inspires affiliates and radicalizes homegrown terrorists. It is America’s violent policies in the Muslim world. Other government officials have acknowledged that Muslim radicals seek revenge for those policies in the Middle East, Africa, and Central Asia, but Napolitano perpetuates the myth that anti-American activity is unprovoked. The American people deserve to hear the truth.

Napolitano referred to recent unsuccessful attacks in the United States: “Other al-Qaeda affiliates have actually attempted to attack the homeland in recent months. These include Tehrik-e Taliban (TTP) [Pakistan] and al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) [Yemen] — which, until their respective claims of responsibility for the attempted Times Square and Christmas Day terrorist attacks, had only conducted attacks in their regions.”

What she left out was that the U.S. government regularly fires missiles into Pakistan and Yemen from aerial drones, killing innocent people. The desire for revenge is a natural consequence.

Napolitano also warned of al-Shabaab in Somalia, which has taken responsibility for recent bombings in Uganda. But she neglected to mention both U.S. and Ugandan military intervention in Somalia, another Muslim country. Are we to be surprised that young naturalized Somali-Americans would feel impelled to go back to their native country to resist American aggression?

Why won’t Napolitano acknowledge that the American empire provokes anti-Americanism? This isn’t rocket science. You bomb someone; they get mad and try to get even. Terrorism is the price paid for maintaining an empire. But the imperial masters apparently think it’s worth the price. They never suffer; on the contrary, they prosper when they can use the violence to justify further expansion of their power.

And so it goes on, like a perpetual-motion machine. Each act of the empire provokes a response that serves as a pretext for further imperial action. The battlefield is the world, and the “war on terror” can go on forever. Except for the dead, the maimed, the malnourished, and the taxpayers, it’s a sweet deal all around.

That “terrorism” is really vengeance (wrongly exacted from civilians) for earlier crimes of the empire should come as no shock, though it undoubtedly will. Nevertheless, even the mainstream press has let us in on some relevant facts.

“In roughly a dozen countries — from the deserts of North Africa, to the mountains of Pakistan, to former Soviet republics crippled by ethnic and religious strife — the United States has significantly increased military and intelligence operations, pursuing the enemy using robotic drones and commando teams, paying contractors to spy and training local operatives to chase terrorists,” the New York Times reported last month.

“While the stealth war began in the Bush administration, it has expanded under President Obama, who rose to prominence in part for his early opposition to the invasion of Iraq. Virtually none of the newly aggressive steps undertaken by the United States government have been publicly acknowledged. In contrast with the troop buildup in Afghanistan, which came after months of robust debate, for example, the American military campaign in Yemen began without notice in December and has never been officially confirmed.”

In other words, America’s fraudulent peace president is using the paramilitary CIA to fight secret wars. They may be described as attacks on “the enemy,” but they inevitably kill innocents — while unfailingly recruiting new militants bent on revenge. In the U.S. government’s code book, “the enemy” is anyone who opposes a U.S. military presence in his country.

Who would trust the intelligence agencies to identify actual terrorists, anyway? As Andrew Bacevich, professor of international relations at Boston University, notes, “After September 11, Iraq, Katrina, the financial meltdown, etc., a bit of modestly might be in order.”

If the terrorist threat is as real as Napolitano says it is, there’s a way to diminish or end it: U.S. out of the Muslim world.

28 September 2010

Supreme Court Takes On Corporate Privacy Case With AT&T

Supreme Court Takes On Corporate Privacy Case With AT&T

Americans don't know much about religion

Associated Press

RACHEL ZOLL, AP Religion Writer

A new survey of Americans' knowledge of religion found that atheists, agnostics, Jews and Mormons outperformed Protestants and Roman Catholics in answering questions about major religions, while many respondents could not correctly give the most basic tenets of their own faiths.

Forty-five percent of Roman Catholics who participated in the study didn't know that, according to church teaching, the bread and wine used in Holy Communion is not just a symbol, but becomes the body and blood of Christ.

More than half of Protestants could not identify Martin Luther as the person who inspired the Protestant Reformation. And about four in 10 Jews did not know that Maimonides, one of the greatest rabbis and intellectuals in history, was Jewish.

The survey released Tuesday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life aimed to test a broad range of religious knowledge, including understanding of the Bible, core teachings of different faiths and major figures in religious history. The U.S. is one of the most religious countries in the developed world, especially compared to largely secular Western Europe, but faith leaders and educators have long lamented that Americans still know relatively little about religion.

Respondents to the survey were asked 32 questions with a range of difficulty, including whether they could name the Islamic holy book and the first book of the Bible, or say what century the Mormon religion was founded. On average, participants in the survey answered correctly overall for half of the survey questions.

Atheists and agnostics scored highest, with an average of 21 correct answers, while Jews and Mormons followed with about 20 accurate responses. Protestants overall averaged 16 correct answers, while Catholics followed with a score of about 15.

Not surprisingly, those who said they attended worship at least once a week and considered religion important in their lives often performed better on the overall survey. However, level of education was the best predictor of religious knowledge. The top-performing groups on the survey still came out ahead even when controlling for how much schooling they had completed.

On questions about Christianity, Mormons scored the highest, with an average of about eight correct answers out of 12, followed by white evangelicals, with an average of just over seven correct answers. Jews, along with atheists and agnostics, knew the most about other faiths, such as Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism and Judaism. Less than half of Americans know that the Dalai Lama is Buddhist, and less than four in 10 know that Vishnu and Shiva are part of 

The study also found that many Americans don't understand constitutional restrictions on religion in public schools. While a majority know that public school teachers cannot lead classes in prayer, less than a quarter know that the U.S. Supreme Court has clearly stated that teachers can read from the Bible as an example of literature.
"Many Americans think the constitutional restrictions on religion in public schools are tighter than they really are," Pew researchers wrote.

The survey of 3,412 people, conducted between May and June of this year, had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, while the margins of error for individual religious groups was higher.

Junkets for Jesus | Mother Jones

Junkets for Jesus | Mother Jones

From accused murderer to member of Congress? - War Room - Salon.com

From accused murderer to member of Congress? - War Room - Salon.com

27 September 2010

i've got nothing to say but it's okay

I miss John Lennon.  He was my favorite Beatle.  I liked them all equally but John always stood out to me.

I miss my grandma Gertrude.  A lot.

I miss Dave Chappelle.  I wish he was still making his show because he is the funniest man on the planet.  May whoever owns Comedy Central be thrice damned for effing that enterprise up! 

I miss the Sarah Silverman Program.  CC you're up to 6 damnations!

I miss American liberty and justice.

I miss equality.

I miss freedom, Jim Morrison, Kurt Kobain & Mother Love Bone.

I miss Adrienne Eastley.  A lot.

But I try not to miss them all at once because that just makes me cry.   

26 September 2010

the travails of a news addict

So I don't watch the news on TV anymore.  You'd think that the internet owns the lion's share of blame for that, but nope.  See, the news on TV isn't really reporting news anymore.  Local channels only do the sensational, it-bleeds-it-leads stories, try to sell me crap and offers the local sports and weather.  Whoopee!  That would be great if I were a no internet havin', infomercial lovin' Springerite or just stupid, but I'm neither.  The half hour of national news by CBS, ABC, NBC all tell virtually the same stories with little variation.  10 minutes or so of real news and onto science and technology.  Knock knock!  There's a bloody war on that is being mismanaged and costing American lives.  Shit, a half hour of news wouldn't be enough if I was any self respecting major national media news outlet CEO.   Are you kidding me?  Surely the cable news networks can provide me with neutral news 24/7.  Ugh!  It's enough to make you rip your hair out when you are looking for what the hell is really going on around the planet.  Sorry I give a damn about what goes on to other people from America to Timbuktu, but back in Sunday school they taught me pretty good that you are to love your neighbor as yourself and everyone in the world was your neighbor.  Damn Christian hippie nonsense!

So I don't watch TV news though I enjoy the Olbermann/Maddow segments on MSNBC and Stewart & Colbert on Comedy Central.  Already I hear the screams of "I knew it!  You're a liberal!" from my imagined Republikkkan readers but are you kidding me?  Oh, sure!  A few hours of the left's views against the whole of news media out that's out there pumping moderate moralist right crap (or worse; FOX news I'm looking at you) non stop, even on Christmas.  Sure, that's what makes me a liberal.  Never mind I'm a Constitutionalist who believes every man & woman everywhere is free to pursue a course of self determination without government intrusion as espoused in the Bill of Rights or that Christians brainwashed me as a child into believing peace, love and charity.

Ah!  Tangents!  The point is that the news on TV is all entertainment.  It's what they want you to see.  That's why all the news coverage is identical.  Like, I realize that the Gulf spill was a huge ecological disaster (that even now is being swept under the rug thanks to the upcoming election cycle) but so is being shot in the face like our noble soldiers get over in Afghanistan.  Where's the embeds for that?  Or where are the reporters asking Presidents why they need to take so much power and abuse their authority in violation of every moral code or human rights law out there?  But that's not what anything on TV is about.  It's all a play with nice looking girls and serious looking me, actors on a national stage selling you a bill of goods so you don't get too smart, don't all come together & unite as a nation.  They even give you a colored foe so you don't need to feel bad about being a racist because all brown skinned people are a problem to be dealt with by killing them or locking them up.

Up until this last September 11th, I naively thought I was free of that TV news crap by getting all my news from the internet but --haha!-- I wasn't.  I fell for that Qu'ran burning in Florida hysteria like many of you did.  Hook, line & sinker.  So was this just a publicity stunt?  Were lives threatened by the Federal government?  Life seems to have gone on as usual for everyone in America even though we were told that the Arabian world were up in arms about it. 

Suddenly Mufreesboro, Tennessee is no longer a news item of interest even though people had dogs used on them and reports of shots being fired.  So what was it all about?  Naturally, it is suspicious, now that 9/11 has become an unofficial American holy day that our holy day was overshadowed by real American racism and xenophobia while simultaneously being reminded of our collective phantom foes overseas.  It was like a test of the internet's ability to filter out crap and to see what it took to get a meme to get computer news geeks everywhere worked up and ready to go whoop some ass and it was an Epic Fail.  Our soft, pink underbellies have been exposed.  Now what do I do for real news?

25 September 2010

Op-Ed Contributor - The Founding Fathers Versus the Tea Party - NYTimes.com

Op-Ed Contributor - The Founding Fathers Versus the Tea Party - NYTimes.com

Op-Ed Columnist - Downhill With the G.O.P. - NYTimes.com

Op-Ed Columnist - Downhill With the G.O.P. - NYTimes.com

24 September 2010

self censorship?

So for the last week I've been laying low and not writing how I've been feeling because the Guardian online news pulled a comment of mine off their web page.  In retrospect, I suppose, I should have just posted my rant here where almost nobody reads my blatherings but my dander was up and there was no turning back. 

So what was so bad that it needed censoring?  Well I wrote, as I believe in my heart, that most Teabaggers and Republikkkans don't see President Obama as a human being, they see him as a nigger.  Naturally, the President would never agree with this, at least not publically, but when you've been raised around white, racist yokels and fervent church goers, you kinda get the idea that different colors are inferior to your own.  Jesus is white (not a swarthy Jew), God is white and the whole of heaven is predominately white because it is, after all, our heaven.  The minorities get their own place in heaven to be sure, segregated from the white folk or in hell.  Mind you, Catholics and Mormons need not apply.  Their twisted perversion of the gospel lands them in hell automatically.

Yeah, religion is a funny monster.  Faith in God (be that God named Yahweh, Allah or Vishnu) is supposed to make one good and holy, not divisive and combative.  But look!  Suicide bombing Muslims, gun happy Jews and lynch mob Americans!  We can say with certainty, using their own holy books as witness against them, that they do not follow any real faith or worship their god in truth, yet in the heart of hearts of these dangerous acolytes, they are firmly convinced they are speaking directly to God and God Himself is condoning and orchestrating their every action no matter what the cost or loss of lives.

Whoa there Mike, I hear the phantom readers protests, Teabaggers might be crazy religious folk but they don't kill anyone like the other faiths do.  Not yet they haven't is my answer, but suppose they are unable to get their way through the political game as they endeavor to do now?  Then what?  When politics fails will they then resort to the violence other faiths enjoin in?  I say yes.  Already they have taken loaded rifles and guns to public events where the Presisdent was speaking.  What then is their message in that outrageous act?  They claimed it was a "2nd amendment issue" but how can that be when no Democrat I've read or heard about even brought up gun control in the last 3 years?  No, this was a deliberate threat to the President saying we're watching and we're armed.

Which takes us to all the name calling piled upon President Obama.  He's a socialist, communist, Muslim, non-American sent from foreign powers to destroy the federal government and rob us of all our liberties and freedoms.  If Obama's white half dominated and we could see no color in him, would so many Americans still wrongly say he's a Muslim?  Or would there be so many accusations of his bigotry against white folk?  Or white face caricatures of him as Ledger's Joker?  Of course not!  He'd still be called a commie and a socialist because Republikkkans always use these invectives when referring to Dumbacrats.

As for my gut assertion that the right doesn't see Obama as a human but an "n" bomb, there has been enough news reports over the last few years to suggest this is true.  Besides, all one has to do is search "nigger" and "Obama" to see what sort of race hatred is out there.

So was I wrong to blast that in a comment post to the Guardian?  Maybe.  Or maybe the idea that America was rife with so much race hate was too much for the comment moderator of the Guardian to fathom or embrace.  Maybe I shouldn't say anything at all but I just get so mad about it.  Obama had a tall order being sworn in as President in the first place what with 2 botched wars, a decimated economy and bailouts to worry about thanks to his criminal predecessor George Bush.  This was never going to be an easy job for anyone to fix.  When the country needed to come together in order to save itself, opportunists like Tancredo, Beck, Limbaugh, Palin et. al. have managed to rip it all apart in the name of their twisted fundamentalist Christian ideology through the power of good old fashion American hate.

16 September 2010

The Dumbacrats have only themselves to blame

So it seems a lot of Dumbacrats out there are really worried about the upcoming November elections and rightfully so.  Let's face it, when your opponent is as vociferously racist and anti-middle class like the Republikkkans, you have to have screwed up pretty bad to be in a position of weakness instead of strength.  Oh sure, the pundits and bobble heads on TV will use the old saw "it's all about the economy, stupid!" to excuse this mess, but the American people know it was the Republikkkans under the illegal Bush administration that destroyed the economy, they just don't care.  Why?

1) The health care reform debacle.  Universal health care has long been a staple of the Dumbacratic party for decades and finally, with the help of the American people buying into what seems now to be a false message of hope, they had the numbers to get it done.  Clear majorities in both House and Senate and a President ready to sign off on the whole shebang.  Further, President Obama campaigned on making health care reform a priority.  But somewhere along the line the Dumbacrats view of what health care reform should be was in conflict with the voters who wanted universal coverage for all.  Health care reform mysteriously became health insurance reform, then the Dumbacrats lost their backbone by worrying that universal coverage would cost them re-election bids.  So rather than show any sort of leadership or courage of conviction, they decided it was best to play it safe.  Making matters worse, members of the Dumbacratic party broke ranks and fought hard to sabotage the process at the behest of their wealthy campaign contributors in the health and pharmaceutical fields.  Say what you want about the evil Republikkkans, they don't break ranks as they demonstrated by infamously showing they are the party of no.  The end result?  The lower and middle classes got screwed again in favor of the rich and corporate interests and Dumbacrats showed why many of us "commoners" regard them as GOP Lite.

All we the people got was another law against their civil liberties that forces us to buy health insurance or face the consequences, whether we can afford it or not.  Talk about a hollow victory!  The passed law is useless and the voters have given up on the spineless Dumbacrats who wouldn't tackle climate change, pass any real Wall St. reform, prosecute Bush for crimes against the nation or do away with torture and other government excesses and abuses of power.  They might as well be Republikkans!  Now this Dumbacratic ineptitude will cost us all if the Republikkkans really do manage to steal back the Congress.  Already the GOP has made clear it will cut Medicare, destroy Social Security and making the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest 1% permanent.  Talk about out of the frying pan and into the fire!  If you think the economy sucks now, wait until those Becktards get a hold of it AGAIN!

2) The Bush bailout.  After 5 odd years of misleading the American public on the crappy state of the economy, a result of his bad economic policies, the criminal George Bush had no choice but to borrow billions of dollars from the Chinese and claiming these loans were to stabilize the economy.  Instead what he did was pass out golden parachutes to his Wall St. pals.  By the time Obama came into office, half that money was gone and of that missing half, all of it went to rich folk.

Yet somehow, in a way I still don't fully understand, this bailout in the mind of American's became Obama's idea, as if he were the originator of this questionable multi-billion dollar deal.  Sure, the Dumbacrats were forced to borrow more money from the Chinese to offset that missing money felonious Bush gifted to the corporations and banks, but Obama is bearing all the blame for Bush's shenanigans.  The Dumbacrats never did anything to contest this notion to my knowledge so this misconception stuck.  The Dumbacrats followed this with the aforementioned health care debacle.

As my man Gump used to say, "Stupid is as stupid does." and these Dumbacrats have indeed been stupid.  I've never seen a political party with a clear majority and a direct mandate from the voters go out of their way not only to alienate their constituents but shoot themselves in the foot every chance they could. 

Now a frustrated American electorate is poised to take a terrible step backwards and to open the door for more Republikkkan abuses.  To me this is true insanity.  How on Earth could any one self respecting, freedom loving American voter think even for a moment that a group of whining, self-indulgent, racist, self-stylized martyrs filled to overflowing with as much twisted fundamentalist religious zealotryand rage as any radical Jihadist like the Republikkans would be a great option to vote for?

Dumbacrats can say it's the economy, perhaps even find some small, cold comfort from that unrealistic thought, but in truth they have done this to themselves. 

15 September 2010

This I Believe (with apologies to Robert A. Heinlein)

Our Noble, Essential Decency « Robert Heinlein | This I Believe

If you haven't read Robert Heinlein's brilliant summation of what America is supposed to be, take a moment, click the link and do so now.  I can wait.

See, when I was still a naive teenager and first read this short essay, a lump formed in my throat and pride surged through my veins.  There was no greater glory than to be born a citizen of the United States, no happier destiny than to be a part of this great people.  Like RAH, I had a central belief in the honesty, goodness and charity of all Americans everywhere.  But I was a dumb kid then and today, I know better.

It's a shame really.  This country which once stood for fair play, liberty and justice for all has been transformed by the hands of wretched, evil men into the police state that it is today.  Today Americans live in fear because a group of covetous men stole the presidency of the United States and allowed, if not abetted, the 9/11 attack even after being strenuously warned about the imminent danger of such an attack.  Such criminal negligence is usually met with jail time but no prosecutor in the land dared to bring such charges against the wanton felons Rove, Bush Jr., or Cheney.  This unholy trinity was untouchable by virtue of wealthy friends and family connections that shielded them from any real, meaningful consequences for their felonies.  To this day they walk free with no fear of any criminal liability to themselves, proving once and for all that the American justice system is unequal and broken.  In such a broken system one wonders how we as a people turn the other way when lowly, common Americans are arrested and jailed with such enthusiasm while those at the top of the food chain literally get away with murder. 

Strangely this sort of authoritarian rule is embraced by the rabid, radical right, the charismatic Christian crowd.  They have ignored their Christ's teachings of love, humility and tolerance for a Satanic, vindictive, mean spirited bigotry.  The most recent example of this was this past 9/11 when the whole world held it's breath wondering if a bunch of Floridian nut jobs might follow through with their threats to burn Qu'rans and set the world on fire.  I suppose if I had any words of encouragement to my Muslim brothers and sisters, it would be this: don't feel so bad; they act this way towards their fellow Americans too.

Indeed, the rabid, radical Republikkkan right has declared a sort of war on the rest of America.  To them free health care, doctor-patient privacy, teaching hard science in the classroom and the Bill of Rights are things to abolish and vilify except when you want to buy guns to defend yourself from an increasingly repressive federal government that they themselves helped-- nay insisted!-- create.  Oh they whine about the federal government now because a Dumbacrat is in office, but just watch how that opinion changes if they do indeed manage to reclaim both houses of Congress as so many political pundits predict.  Then it'll be: We have to expand the government in the name of homeland security but Social Security is a Communist idea and must be abolished!  More money for war and weapons, not schools!  Cut taxes for the wealthy and pass the cost to the middle and lower classes!

See, to the rabid right, we don't count, we don't matter.  Hell, they don't even think of the rest of us as true Americans at all.  All that matters to them is legislating morality through their dangerously warped prism of fundamentalist Christianity and that means the country should just fly right and do as their told.  If this is contrary to personal freedom and the individual responsibility they are always on about, so be it.  Better to be a hypocrite forcing America to be a Christian nation than to allow civil liberties and freedom to rule the land.

So Tea bagger Christine O'Donnell won the Deleware GOP primary to the chagrin of the Republikkkan party.  She's the 8th Tea bagger to win in primaries this year and I read there is a possible 9th victory on the horizon for this fanatic cult.  That means that, in spite of the abuses heaped upon them by the radical right under the illegal Bush regime, the American people have gone and bellied up to their bigoted bar and ordered themselves another round of "stick my liberties up my ass cuz I'm not using them anyway".

So what do you do when Americans are destroying your faith in America?  What does one do when white collar criminals like Bush get away with murder?  Where do we go when justice favors the rich while punishing only the poor?  How do we fight against this wickedness when even local law enforcement does the bidding of evil men in Washington?

I never, ever thought I'd live to see a day where I would write this: I'm glad Robert H. has passed on so he didn't live to see this travesty befall his (and my) beloved country.  I sometimes think he got the better end of it simply because he didn't have to watch in horror as his belief in the goodness and decency of all Americans got dashed against the rocks of political opportunism and religious zealotry.  My America and his was a great place to live until the freaks on the rabid Republikkkan right and their enablers in the Dumbacratic party twisted and profaned it into this unholy mockery of what it once was.  Today our system of petty governance is hardly discernible from the style of government employed by the Soviets in their day.  Should the Nazi-esque rabid right succeed in their ambitions to reclaim political power they will only take us further down the wrong path and all hopes of reclaiming our lost Republic will be dead forever.

13 September 2010

Journalist: Women raped at Abu Ghraib were later ‘honor killed’ | Raw Story

By Daniel Tencer
Saturday, September 11th, 2010 -- 10:24 pm

Some women who were raped at the US's Abu Ghraib prison facility in Iraq were later "honor killed" by their families, says a Jordanian reporter who writes on women's issues.

"In Abu Ghraib, women were tortured by the Americans much more than the men," Lima Nabil told The Independent. "One woman said she witnessed five girls being raped. Most of the women in the prison were raped – some of them left prison pregnant. Families killed some of these women – because of the shame."

Nabil, who has reported extensively on the status of women in the Arab world and runs a home for runaway girls, made the comments to renowned foreign correspondent Robert Fisk in an article on honor killings in Jordan. Nabil did not expand on her comments in the article.
Fisk reported that a "very accurate source in Washington" in close contact with military personnel has confirmed "terrible stories of gang rape" by US forces at the now-notorious prison.

The unnamed source told Fisk that images of women being raped were behind the Obama administration's decision not to release any more pictures of abuses at Abu Ghraib. The original set of images, showing male prisoners being abused, were released in 2004, horrifying and angering the Arab world.

Military and White House officials have repeatedly denied that the Abu Ghraib images still under wraps depict rape.

Allegations that women were raped at the facility have been made for years. In 2004, New Yorker correspondent Seymour Hersh alleged rape at the facility and said the US government has videotape of underage boys being sodomized.
"Some of the worst that happened that you don't know about ... Videos, there are women there. Some of you may have read they were passing letters, communications out to their men. This is at Abu Ghraib which is 30 miles from Baghdad....
         "The women were passing messages saying "Please come and kill me, because of what's   happened." Basically what happened is that those women who were arrested with young boys/children in cases that have been recorded. The boys were sodomized with the cameras rolling. The worst about all of them is the soundtrack of the boys shrieking that your government has. They are in total terror it's going to come out."

Lima Nabil's journalistic career has had its share of controversies. She says she has been threatened over her reporting on the abuse of women in Jordan, and has even had stories officially censored.

Nabil came in for criticism from defenders of Israel for writing a treatise entitled Jerusalem: 5,000 Years of Arab History, in which she links the Jebusite population in the area more than 3,000 years ago to the current Palestinian population -- a common claim among Palestinians.

But supporters of Israel have criticized the piece as an attempt to deny Jewish links to Jerusalem.

why I hate, detest and despise the NFL v. 2.0

Up until the Seattle Seahawks-Pittsburgh Steelers Super Bowl debacle, I was a devout follower of the NFL.  I love(d) football and even though the local Lions stunk to high heaven, it was alright because I really, really dig (dug) the Patriots.  Now as a fan this naturally means I've seen all manner of crappy calls and officiating in my day (which instant replay was originally intended to fix, not encourage) but who in their right minds could watch that watershed Super Bowl which Seattle handily won on the field and not be as disgusted as Paul Holmgren when their hard earned championship was hijacked by the officials that day and gifted to Pittsburgh?  It was a travesty and a mockery.  Otto Graham rolled in his grave.  I was so angry (and I really don't care one way or the other about the Seahawks), I never watched football again.  After all, if I wanted to watch a scripted competition, I'd watch the stupid WWE (or whatever it's called these days)!

That was then.  Version 1.0 which should have been enough.  But nope, I'm an idiot it seems.  Last year I tried playing fantasy football on Yahoo.  Before you know it, I was watching the sport again.  Sure, there were still some bad shenanigans but not enough to make me enraged enough to quit watching.  Until now.

Let's face it, people in the Detroit area have suffered a great deal lo these many decades.  The Fords are lousy football owners and Detroit hasn't seen a championship since Eisenhower was in office (that's 50 odd years for you youngsters out there).  Oh we've come close once or twice but the hard luck Lions could never close the deal.  Lately though, it's been downright impossible to be a devoted Lions fan.  They have been terrible and talentless.  Fans show up to games with paper bags over their heads so no one sees their true identity.  I gave up entirely on them, which sucked.  I am a Lions fan after all (though they are 2nd to my Patriots) and all I could do was cringe with the rest of America at the joke the team had become.  Until now.

Today, the Lions boast a solid young core of real talent with a lot of promise.  Yesterday was their coming out party in enemy territory.  After Chicago posted an early field goal, the Lions roared back and despite some late 2nd quarter heroics from Chicago, Detroit went into the half up 14-13 and down their starting quarterback.  Ugh!  Like every Detroit fan out there, I could only hold my breath.  We know that bad news follows the lions like stink on Pepe LePew and it was only a matter of time before the Lions would screw up and lose the game.  Sure enough, the Lions let Matt Forte scamper 28 yards for a touchdown with 1:32 left in the game.  That was it.  Done.  They found a way to lose yet again.  Ugh!  But wait!  The guys on the radio got excited.  Shaun Hill to Calvin Johnson.  Touchdown!!!  The loudly cheering crowd suddenly was silent.  An official raised his hands in the air.  The NFL game center online declared the Lions were ahead 20-19.  Holy shit!  The Lions not only won their first road game since '07, they had won their first season opener since Moses was a baby!  Yes!  Maybe the Lions are on the road to recovery!

Then the challenge came from the booth.  Who was in the booth, I'll never know.  Was it a Chicago fan?  Was it another case of bad NFL scripting?  You ask these things when bullshit lands square on your face.  I had to see the play for myself.  I watched it several times getting angrier and angrier about it with each viewing.  Clearly the ball was caught.  Clearly the receiver had control all the way down.  He still clearly had it when he landed on his ass in the end zone.  Receiver down.  Touchdown.  At least that's what a touchdown has been since I was a kid.  Immediately after hitting the ground, Johnson, excited, got up off the ground to celebrate with his teammates and this caused the booth review.  Huh?!?  How can you review a clear touchdown?  Yet they did and the Lions got hosed while all their fans got raped.

So I give up (again) on the sad, pathetic NFL.  Maybe next week the league will hand Detroit a victory over Phillie to make it up to the Lions but who cares if they do?  The damage is done.  There is no war room like they have in the NHL to prevent this sort of crap from occurring and so it's going to keep happening over and over and over again.  Who knows?  Next time it might be your team that gets it.  But Americans have shown that they don't really care about these huge flaws.  They already call it the No Fun League and continue to watch this watered down, inferior football product.  You can't even tackle the quarterback anymore!  Not this honky though.  I'm done.  I've had a good run though.  I watched Brian Sipe and the Cardiac Kids.  I saw The Drive.  I was there for the Barry Sanders years and Super Bowl Shuffled.  I called the Lions rout of the Steelers on Thanksgiving Day back in '83.  Those days are gone for good as this "new" NFL pisses all over my childhood memories and desecrates the teams I once cherished with their stupid mismanagement of the game.

09 September 2010

Secret Air Force X-37B space plane changes its orbit - CSMonitor.com

By Leonard David, SPACE.com's Space Insider Columnist / August 24, 2010 

The U.S. Air Force's secretive X-37B space plane apparently boosted itself into a new orbit Aug. 9, according to reports from seasoned satellite trackers around the world, SPACE.com has learned.

 The orbit-raising maneuver was first noticed Aug. 14 by amateur skywatcher Greg Roberts of Cape Town, South Africa, when the object failed to appear as predicted by the last known orbit. After several nights of searching, Roberts found it again on Aug. 19, which enabled the new orbit to be estimated with sufficient accuracy to easily locate the X-37B space plane on subsequent nights.

That detective work led to other sky-sleuthing detections by Alberto Rango in Rome and Brad Young in Tulsa, Okla. Their sharp-eyed skills were essential in refining the calculation of the space plane's new orbit and confidently determining the circumstances of the orbit-raising maneuvers.

Also called the Orbital Test Vehicle-1 (OTV-1), the hush-hush X-37B — a robotic reusable spacecraft — was launched April 22 atop an Atlas 5 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Fla. From that point onward, mum has been the word about what it's up to.
Air Force officials have said only that the winged spacecraft is undergoing planned mission tests.

"Following the successful launch and initialization, the first flight of the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV-1) continues to focus on checking out the on-orbit performance of the vehicle and proving the technologies required for long-duration, reusable space vehicles with autonomous re-entry and landing capabilities," Air Force spokesman Andy Roake told SPACE.com in a statement.

The X-37B had circled Earth for 123 days as of Monday. Air Force officials have said the unmanned spacecraft could stay in orbit for around 270 days.

This week the space plane is expected to fly over many North American cities and towns, according to the satellite-watching website Spaceweather.com. Skywatchers who know where to look using telescopes have a chance to see the X-37B space plane, weather permitting.
A key team member of the amateur network and an eyes-glued observer and analyst of X-37B's flight is Ted Molczan of Toronto.

Molczan is part of the amateur skywatching group that initially spotted the space plane in May and recorded video of the X-37B in space using ground-based equipment.

Coincidence is meaningful

Molczan's analysis of the new orbit enabled him to discern that during the orbit-raising maneuvers, the space plane passed within range of several Air Force Satellite Control Network (AFSCN) facilities: the Hawaii Tracking Station at Kaena Point, Oahu; Guam Tracking Station at Andersen Air Force Base; Vandenberg Tracking Station, Vandenberg AFB, California; Colorado Tracking Station, Schriever AFB in Colorado Springs; and the New Hampshire Tracking Station, New Boston (N.H.) Air Force Station.

"To put this into perspective, these are five out of the eight fixed AFSCN tracking stations, and X-37B's orbit only passes within range of six stations," Molczan said. "Diego Garcia was the one of the six that was out of range for the orbit-raising. So it seems reasonable to conclude that the coincidence is meaningful."

The Diego Garcia Tracking Station is on the Diego Garcia atoll, part of British Indian Ocean Territory.

From launch until Aug. 9, the X-37B was in a 40-degree orbit, zipping around the Earth at a 250-mile-by-260-mile (403 km by 420 km) orbit. It maintained a nearly constant altitude by making frequent small maneuvers to counter atmospheric drag, Molczan said.

Then on Aug. 9, the space plane made two larger maneuvers, increasing its mean altitude by roughly 17 miles (27.5 km).

The mystery space plane's first orbital adjustment occurred near its apogee (high point of orbit), raising its orbit to approximately 260 miles by 276 miles (420 km by 445 km). The final maneuver occurred near the next high point of its orbit, which happened to coincide near overhead passes of Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado. The resulting orbit was 268 miles by 276 miles (432 km by 445 km), Molczan noted.

Flight testing

As for whether the space plane's orbit change relates to its imminent return to Earth, slated to be at Vandenberg, Molczan told SPACE.com he doesn't think so.

"The spacecraft has considerable cross-range capability, so I suspect that phasing maneuvers for landing seldom would be required. Had this been a phasing maneuver, I suspect it would have been smaller, and a decrease in altitude. Very small maneuvers well ahead of a planned landing can bring about any required shift in ground track," he said.

In Molczan's view, the orbit raising may have been part of the flight testing of the military space plane. "It could also have been required by the payload. The nearly four-day repeating ground track of the original orbit — and the nearly 6 day repeating ground track of the new orbit — suggests that a reconnaissance payload is aboard. But I have no way to be certain."

Robotic landing in California

Little is known about the classified duties of the X-37B. However, Air Force officials did make it clear in pre-launch statements that the craft's first mission would focus on proving technologies necessary for long-duration reusable space vehicles with autonomous re-entry and landing capabilities.

According to the Pentagon, a second X-37B is under construction. This SPACE.com X-37B graphic illustrates some details of the space plane and its relative size.

The robotic mini-plane resembles the space shuttle and is equipped with a payload bay about the size of a pickup truck bed.

Built by Boeing's Phantom Works division, the X-37B space plane is just over 29 feet (9 meters) long and weighs about 11,000 pounds (5,000 kg). It stands slightly more than 9.5 feet (3 meters) high and has a wingspan of just over 14 feet (4.3 meters).

The spacecraft's new mission is overseen by the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office. The X-37B is believed to be operated by contractors under the direction of Air Force Space Command's 3rd Space Experimentation Squadron at Schriever Air Force Base.

The X-37B is designed to orbit Earth at altitudes of up to 500 nautical miles, loiter in orbit for up to 270 days, then re-enter the atmosphere to make an automated landing at Vandenberg.

"After the test objectives are satisfied, we look forward to a successful re-entry and recovery at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, and post-landing refurbishment of the vehicle," said Roake, the Air Force spokesman. "No landing date has been scheduled."

US Tea Party in London to spread low tax message | World news | The Guardian

US Tea Party in London to spread low tax message | World news | The Guardian

Tea Party Tax Protest, Atlanta, Georgia A Tea Party anti-tax protest in Atlanta: The rightwing group is in London to promote its small government and low tax message. Photograph: KPA/Zuma/Rex Features Lobbyists behind the rightwing Tea Party group in the US will arrive in London today to spread their message of low taxes and small government at an event organised by the UK's controversial Taxpayers' Alliance.
The event, the largest of its kind in Europe, is heavily sponsored by US lobby groups that have backed the Tea Party grouping as its challenges moderate Republican party candidates in congressional elections.
Critics of the event said it established a clear link between British rightwing groups and aggressive American lobbyists who pursued low taxes, loose regulation and widespread privatisation of public services.
The Taxpayers' Alliance aggressively promotes an anti-tax, anti-state, anti-Europe agenda and many of its leading figures have close links with the Tory party and the rightwing press. Its chief executive, Matthew Elliott, will lead the "no" campaign against the adoption of the alternative vote system in next May's referendum.
Today's conference will be attended by Americans who have lobbied in the US to overturn Barack Obama's healthcare plan and maintain tax breaks for the rich. Several of the groups have close links to the billionaire brothers David and Charles Koch, prominent tormentors of the Obama administration.
US groups sponsoring the event include the Americans for Prosperity Foundation, the Cato Institute and the Heritage Foundation, which came to prominence in the 1970s as Ronald Reagan's favourite thinktank. The Kochs, whose private company owns oil rigs and pipelines in the US, founded the Americans for Prosperity Foundation and have spent tens of millions of dollars supporting the Cato Institute. They also channel funds into causes through their business empire and one Koch-owned firm, Flint Hills Resources, has donated $1m (£650,000) to the campaign against California's anti-global warning proposition being voted on in November.
The Cato Institute, which promotes its views on Fox News and other rightwing media, is one of the Tea Party's main backers.
Prominent Tory supporters are also backing the conference. Stanley Kalms, the former chairman of Dixons, is a key sponsor of the event along with investment banker Howard Flight. Flight was a Tory MP and frontbench Treasury spokesman before David Cameron became leader, while Kalms was Tory treasurer and one of its main backers.
Campaigner Richard Murphy, who wrote a report for the TUC showing how companies and wealthy individuals avoid billions of pounds of tax, said: "It's clear the Taxpayers' Alliance receives a huge amount of support from the US, where there is serious money behind the lobbying for low taxes. The conference is billed as a debate among European thinktanks, but it is a barely disguised front for the most aggressive lobby tactics championed on the other side of the Atlantic."
A spokesman for the Taxpayers' Alliance said the conference had a long history of links with US thinktanks, along with free market groups worldwide.
"It is a place for people who believe in the free market to debate ideas and how to influence events," he said.
The European Resource Bank conference, also billed as the Taxpayers' Conference and Free Market Roadshow, which will be held at various venues in the capital and includes a dinner at the Guildhall, is a spinoff from the American Resource Bank conference.
The spokesman said only that UK residents were among its 60,000 supporters. He said sponsors supported the conference with cash and help in kind, but he refused to say how much individual sponsors needed to contribute to be listed on the conference agenda.
Speakers from Norway, Italy, Switzerland and the UK will debate alongside US representatives about how to persuade governments that the answer to the recession and the financial crisis is an extension of privatisation policies and greater freedom from state controls.
The World Taxpayers Associations, which represents low tax groups in more than 60 countries, will present its audited accounts at the conference.
Murphy said: "The Taxpayers' Alliance has done a fantastic job of presenting itself as a representative of the poor downtrodden taxpayer.
"It regularly grabs slots on the BBC and other media to argue that taxpayers are hard done by. But the freedoms it wants is freedom from taxes for a tiny minority of wealthy people."

The lobby groups

The Cato Institute

A thinktank dedicated to individual liberty, limited government and free markets funded by oil majors such as Chevron, Exxon and Shell, as well as the David and Charles Koch, who made their millions from oil pipelines.


Formed after a merger between Citizens for a Sound Economy, headed by former House majority leader Dick Armey, and Empower America, co-founded by Jack Kemp, the rightwing former gridiron star whom was a prominent Reagan-era Republican.

Americans for Prosperity (AFP)

Started by oil billioniare David Koch, AFP aims to disrupt the Obama presidency and has opposed health care reform, stimulus spending, and cap-and-trade legislation. AFP has also taken a lead role in the Tea Party and its director is Art Pope, an ex-legislator who has been dubbed "The Knight of the Right".

Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation

Created by the former president and charged by him with continuing his legacy and sharing his principles – individual liberty, economic opportunity, global democracy and national pride.

Krieble Foundation

Established in 1984 by the family of Professor Vernon Krieble, the scientist who developed Loctite glue. Committed to using its assets "to further democratic capitalism and the preserve and promote a society of free, educated, healthy and creative individuals."

Heritage Foundation

Thinktank co-founded in the early 70s by rightwing activist Paul Weyrich to counter liberal views. Became very influential in the Reagan era and was closely linked with support for anti-communist wars in central America and Afghanistan, and the "star wars" plan.

after the gathering

So I went to a party tonight and had a good time though I'll probably pay for it when I wake up.  It was a mixed assortment of people who knew about each other mostly from work but there were a few other outsiders floating around like myself. 

Right here was true America, What This Country Is All About: ordinary folk trying to get through their day, raise their families and, if lucky, to celebrate and have a good time.  We all need to let off a little steam sometimes and here I was seeing good people do just that.  No one was hurting anyone, nobody fought, it was all peace, harmony and light (though some lover's drama happened in the background).

It surprised me when a few of them told me that they feared their government.  Not all at once mind you, but individually over the course of the evening. 

I suppose that's kind of how some Tea partiers feel because they certainly say that about the the federal government (though they said nothing when Bush initiated many of the pogroms that oppress America today).  To the peoples of the Tea party's eternal shame they were silent when the federal government was taken over illegally by Bush and his cronies.  Had the Tea party started then, I would have been on board (sorta; they are racists after all).  Instead the Tea party waited for a black man to be President before they got all upset.  Here's a newsflash for you Tea people: Obama is playing with the rule book the criminal George Bush left him.  Where was your anger then when our phone calls were monitored, or your e-mails read or even when the federal government decided it had to know what library books you bloody read!?

Americans should fear their government.  We have fed it too much power and it wants more still. We Americans were once raised to know that no one man, even the President, is to have too much power.  We had a king once, King George, but it didn't work out so well for many of the same socio-economic reasons we see happening today.  We Americans have allowed soulless politicians to make our President into a king.  He has a king's power to execute his citizens, arrest them on a whim, send American troops into fool's wars, spy on them, whatever he damn well pleases. 

08 September 2010

Two Multibillionaire Brothers Are Remaking America for Their Own Benefit | CommonDreams.org

Two Multibillionaire Brothers Are Remaking America for Their Own Benefit | CommonDreams.org

I got angry when I read this article, real mad and stirred up.  This is America dammit!  Land of the free and home of the brave and all those other slogans we toss around like kernels gleaned from some fantastical holy document writ long ago.

Free!  Free!  Whisper that word to yourself and feel the majesty and pride of that idea swell within your star spangled breast!  America! Only free men live here!  That's the promise of America, what truly makes us great and the envy of the whole world.  The song of hope on every immigrant's lips as they dream one day but to reach our shores.  There is hope in freedom, a kind of redemption that swears to every man, woman and child that you can make something of yourself here.  You can be great and change the whole world.

Today we see what is becoming of that promise.  Once again we see common Americans being manipulated by rich, fat white guys who would rule as kings and lord it over all of us, spreading a gospel of hate and lies as they go, reshaping America into their warped, fanatical Christian view of it. 

That's the true cunning of the white, elitist American rich.  They're always selling us the rope we use to fashion our nooses.

07 September 2010

David Axelrod: Republican Congress Could Be 'More Extreme' Than Bush (EXCLUSIVE)

David Axelrod: Republican Congress Could Be 'More Extreme' Than Bush (EXCLUSIVE)

If you believe the hype, the next few months are going to be a downer for Dumbacrats as the nation "recoils from Obama's Socialist agenda".  Obviously President Obama isn't a Socialist, rather a watered down version of Republikkkans, yet, as we as a nation have witnessed since the very day Obama was inaugurated, he has been caricatured by the media as a foreign Hitlerian-Marxist jihadist bent on destroying America. 

According to the recent poll by the Pew Research Center roughly 1/3 of conservative Republikkkans (34%) say Obama is a Muslim and that, even among his supporters, less than half now say Obama is a Christian.  Among Dumbocrats 46% say Obama is a Christian down from 55% in March 2009.  This belief that Obama is a Muslim has increased among Republikkkans (up 14 points since 2009), especially conservative Republikkkans (up 16 points).  The number of independents who say Obama is a Muslim has also increased (up eight points).  There has been little change in the number of Dumbocrats who say Obama is a Muslim, but fewer say he is a Christian (down nine points since 2009).  When asked how they learned about Obama's religion in an open-ended question, 60% of those who say Obama is a Muslim cite the media.(1)

For all the talk of a liberal media, you'd be hard pressed to find it.  Instead it is a vast rabid right noise and propaganda machine fueled by FOX News and its reprehensible allies.  Just in these last 2 years this nation has seen where FOX News airs a story they know to be false (the Sharon Sharrod story being the latest example) and repeats it over and over for several days until the so called "mainstream" media picks it up and begins repeating the false story, at which point FOX introduces a new lie while repeating the old chestnuts of "wealth redistribution" and "he's a Communist".  After 2 years of this brainwashing and conditioning, what else is the American public going to think?  As they have demonstrated over the last decade, the public isn't very good at reasoning.  Rather they rely on impulse and emotionalism which is happily provided to them by the Becktards and Limbums of the world.  Still, we can't blame it all on the rabid right and FOX, though they indeed hold the lion's share of the credit for the national miasma in our public political discourse.  President Obama has played into their hands by taking the high road.

From day one President Obama needed to be fighting back against the rabid right's ridicule, fear mongering, falsehoods and race baiting but he refused to.  His goal of middle of the road compromise and good natured political wrangling in the best interests of the country seemed like the natural course of things, especially seeing as the Dumbocrats compromised with Republikkkans repeatedly during the Bush regime.  Quid pro quo. right?  What Obama failed to recognize is that most of today's Republikkkans are fundamentalist whackos born of the Christian Coalition movement.  I suppose many people today forget that the CC was a Pat Robertson group bent on transforming the Republikkkan party into a fundamentalist Christian party, a goal they succeeded in spectacularly.  Remember the "Contract with America"?  That was theirs.  I remember reading it and scoffing at it because the whole contract was the Republikkkans promising America that they would do the job they'd be elected to do in the first place while fighting to protect family values safe against the Communists and Socialists of the Dumbocratic party.   And they really, really mean it this time!  Not like before.  Or the last time.  Or the time before that.  Ugh!

When they couldn't wrest the presidency from Clinton in '96, nor pin any of the hundreds of salacious scandals they repeatedly lied about upon him, nor nail his "dyke wife" for Whitewater or anything, all it took was one dittohead to screw up the fate of this nation.  Linda Tripp you, I'm looking at you.(2)

With a wagged tongue and recording devices provided by the Republikkkan Ken Starr the greatest threat to national security quit being bin Laden's terrorists but oral sex being given in the Oval Office.  You know the rest.  The new FOX News gathers the audience it has today by giving sexually repressed fundamentalist Christians titillating stories of cigars in vaginas and semen soaked dresses while simultaneously reaffirming their bitter moral outrage over the endless tide of filth in modern society that would lead a rich and powerful white man and President of the United States to receive sexual favors from a nice looking woman for the first time ever in all human history.  Is it any coincidence that the Clinton scandal led to 8 more years of talking about Bush? 

Today my country still suffers from the policies of the illegal, illegitimate Bush administration and will forever it seems as our politicians are all too spineless to change anything back to the way it was before and in the case of the Republikkkans, too partisan as well.  The Republikkkans have shown us all again that they are all hypocrites, they are all known liars and that the best interests of the nation are not their concern yet somehow they are poised to retake the House and even out the Senate according to pollsters and research groups.  As I've observed before, the public isn't much for reasoning. 

The Dumbacrats have done this to themselves naturally. 

1) From day one when the rabid right Republikkkan noise machine started blasting, they should have been blasting back instead of worrying about our national discourse because, like it or not, that is how America IS thanks to FOX News and the Becktards.  If you don't stand up to the bully, the bully pushes you around and never changes.  No, he continues to harrass or harm you and the other kids for all their milk money until someone does stand up to him.
That was the Dumbacrats unofficial contract with America and you can see they failed at it.  Reps Weiner and Grayson have tried to get their fellow party members to see this, but Dumbacrats are cowards dodging conflicts.  At least that is the impression they and the media have given me.

2)  The whole health care debacle showed us independents and the progressive liberal left that the politics of change was all smoke and mirrors.  With a clear majority, the Dumbacrats could've and should've brought universal health care to the last civilized Western country not to have it: the United States of America.  Instead, they let the rich and powerful insurance groups, medical groups and pharmaceuticals (who also donate huge amounts of money to the Dumbacrat's campaigns) buy back the legislation and rewrite it, warping into a sad joke and a hollow, meaningless victory for any American except those already wealthy.  That's the reason so many Americans don't like "Obamacare".  They wanted universal coverage you dunces!  To demonstrate his leadership in this untenable situation, President Obama should have just gone to his party and said, "Fellas, this is what we are going to do!"  Instead he said, "Look, you guys need to fix this."  or "You guys need to get this done" or worse still "I'm trying to find some middle ground with our Republikkkan friends and reach across the aisle."  Dude!  They swear you are an unborn Muslim masquerading as an American here to destroy the American way of life for Satan and black people with your thrice damned Nazi Communist Socialism and you want to hear their opinions?!?  (3)

So what will happen when the Republikkkans take over?  They have already declared one of their first priorities is to gut Social Security and privatize it.  They have already said they would defund the already weak "Obamacare legislation".  They will take more and more from the lower classes and redistribute the wealth upwards to themselves.  They will be pushing for wars, outrageously funding the Pentagon's whimsical plans for new ways to kill, torture or indoctrinate.  They will add to the deficit as they did every year under Bush, a deficit that is actually shrinking under Obama.

That's another victory right there.  The Dumbacrats should be walking away with this election cycle and not looking back!  Instead the Republikkkans may mire us in more years of failed Bush era policies.  Heaven forbid they should retake the White House as that will probably end in nuclear war, a war Republikkkans are willing to wage in accordance with their End Times beliefs.


(1) These figures come from http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1701/poll-obama-muslim-christian-church-out-of-politics-political-leaders-religious

(2) I had more bad things to say about Tripp but I'm trying to live by Ron Burgandian philosophy and trying to stay classy and edited myself.  I suppose I could e-mail the original wording if anyone asks for it.

(3) It is my firm belief that Republikkkan members of Congress commonly refer to President Obama as "n word" behind closed doors.  Though I have never heard them say it directly, there have been plenty of hints that suhhest they do as when they conspicuously call the President "uppity".   "Uppity n-word", is a common racial slur with some interesting search engine results for those who don't believe me.

04 September 2010

a brief word by the dean of science fiction regarding todays republikkkans

It is a truism that almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so, and will follow it by suppressing opposition, subverting all education to seize early the minds of the young, and by killing, locking up, or driving underground all heretics. - Robert A. Heinlein
you tell 'em RAH!

03 September 2010

The myth of Middle East peace 'in a year'

Middle East peace 'in a year' | World news | The Guardian

This isn't a long post, just a brief tirade at the idiocy behind the ineffectual peace talks going on between Israel and Mahmoud Abbas.  I say this is idiocy for several reasons.
First, Abbas is the West's selection to represent all the Palestinians, which is just dumb.  There are so many different Palestinian factions, Abbas can't possibly speak for them all.  Besides, Abbas doesn't come to these talks in any position of power.  The Israeli state is far more powerful than this sole individual who has no country to even represent but some vague notion of what country he might represent if the West hadn't stolen Palestinian lands to gift to the Jews to make up for the holocaust.

Second, these talks are rigged in Israel's favor.  The US isn't an honest peace broker here as the American federal government is not only a staunch supporter of all things Israeli, but filled with fundamentalist Christians who base US foreign policy on Biblical myths, which is insane.  The US isn't going to demand one thing from the Israelis and even if they did, Israel's political influence and bribes in the form of lobbying or campaign donations to certain American politicians would take care of that.  Israel is trying to save face here in front of the entire world but really have nothing at stake in these talks.  We Americans are the bought and sold Israeli lap dogs posing as honest arbitrators of peace.

Third, what are the Israelis really going to give up or compromise in these talks?  Ben Nutenyahu (spelling intentional as the guy is a sandwich shy of a picnic) has already declared Israel will not stop expanding Jewish settlements, it will not give up any land to the Palestinians, it won't stop building it's West Bank barrier wall.  So what's the point?
This whole thing is a sham so that Israel and her bitch, the United States, can say to the whole world, "Hey, well at least we tried to have peace.  You guys all saw that right?"

02 September 2010

Rachel Maddow Calls Out Republicans For Hypocrisy On HCR Benefits (VIDEO) | TPM LiveWire

Rachel Maddow Calls Out Republicans For Hypocrisy On HCR Benefits (VIDEO) | TPM LiveWire

Democrats unlikely to repeal tax cuts for the rich | McClatchy

Democrats unlikely to repeal tax cuts for the rich | McClatchy

If you're a spiritual person like myself, you recognize that I don't have much use for money.  Money, claimed Paul the Apostate, is THE root of ALL evil and I believe that very much.  You don't see poor people going around invading sovereign nations and breaking international laws, it's always the rich.  I suspect this is because the rich have far too much time on their hands which they use to scheme about how to get even richer or how to steal from the lower classes.  If money is the CAUSE (or root) of ALL evil, then this fact alone shows how sick and depraved rich people are.  Think of rich folk as clumps of smelly dog poop in your front yard.  You can let is sit there, watching it get whiter and whiter (which happens to rich folk of color); you can let it sit there and step on it getting that evil stench on you; you can sit there dreaming about maybe being a piece of crap one day yourself; or you can pick that crap up and throw it away.

Now piece of crap rich people dress themselves up in fine clothes and fancy colognes and perfumes but no matter how hard they try to look and smell like roses, they are in their soul nothing better than feces.  What rich man has a soul or is truly good or virtuous?  There isn't one.  If there were then they'd sell all they have, give their money to the poor and follow Jesus, right?  Isn't that Biblical?  Or is this another case of American Christianity being hypocritical by arbitrarily picking and choosing which rules of Jesus they will follow and which they will disregard as "outdated"?  Aren't the rules and teachings of Christ timeless?  If so, who has the divine authority to decide what rules today's Christians will follow or not?  You?  Me?  Ha!  Remember, Jesus said that it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter heaven.  If the rich can't go to heaven, then even God himself sees them as they are: evil pieces of crap.

So here in America, those who lord it over us every day are rich folk.  Rich folk run state and local governments and they rule the federal government with an iron fist.  You can't get elected to any office in America without truckloads of cash.  Even here in Ypsilanti the recent mayoral race cost in the neighborhood of $20,000 and Ypsi is a dump. 

Rich folk have nothing in common with the rest of us because the rich believe they are better than us and maybe they are.  Maybe this is just plain and simple Darwinian survival of the fittest with folks like Dubya Bush and Glenn Beck(tard) being better than you or me and much more deserving of the finer things in life.  They are the gods and we are the clods.  Still, let's put my little rant into perspective:  allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire would immediately pay $35 BILLION (that's BILLION) of our national debt.  Yet all these rich folk, who will indeed remain rich after the tax cuts expire, are whining like little kids throwing a tantrum about how this would hurt the economy or how this is "redistribution of the wealth".  They whine about this as our national infrastructure crumbles, our schools can't afford teachers and children go to bed hungry at night because their parents has to pay the over priced electric bill or face shut off.

Are you kidding me?  The wealth NEEDS to be redistributed!   It needs to be taken from those who don't need it and given to those who do.  It is the moral thing to do.  If nothing else, there should at least be a salary cap on how much wealth any one person can have like they do in all the pro sports.  Why is Social Security and Medicare in trouble?  Because the rich don't want to pay their fair share.  Why can't we fix our infrastructure so that no more bridge collapses happen?  The rich say raise taxes on goods and products us little folk have to purchase for basic survival.  Why are kids going to bed hungry?  Because those scheming rich bastards swear that all poor people are lazy drug users and won't pay for it.  So while they plot and plan, passing laws to ensure they keep drawing more and more wealth from the lower classes, we suffer and eek out the meagerest of existences.   Does that sound like something Jesus would do?  Of course not!  Jesus would say "sell all you have and follow me".