Friday, August 30, 2013

At the Syrian Threshold:
“al-Qaeda’s Air Force” Prepares for Battle

Here's a report from July, "FSA chemical lab uncovered near Damascus":

Chemical weapons materials and facilities have been found multiple times in "rebel" areas. The "rebels" are the *only ones* who have any motive for using chemical weapons.

Yeah, it's from RT (Russia’s English-language TV channel). Do you really think you have any more reason to believe the US government and its media -- proven liars, multiple times, on the subject -- than RT?  It’s those who reflexively dismiss anything reported by RT or Press TV (Iran’s English-language TV channel), while reflexively taking for granted the truth of everything Obama and the New York Times and MSNBC say, who demonstrate their gullibility. Do you really believe that the foot-stomping insistence of Obama and Biden and Kerry that they absolutely, positively know the Syrian government is to blame is any more credible than was the sooo convincing “proof” that George Bush and Dick Cheney produced on Iraq? Remember how the media and the humanitarian interventionists liberal imperialists creamed over Colin Powell’s irrefutable presentation?  Here we go again. Fool me how often?

Guess what, Obamicans: It’s the same imperialist state. If anything, at this point, Obama has less credibility than Bush, and you have less excuse for going along with him.

Monday, August 19, 2013


America: Where we have our priorities straight.
(And where there's constant complaint about teachers' salaries.)

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Ball of Confusion:
Bradley Manning’s Meaning

On Wednesday, during the sentencing phase of his trial, Bradley Manning made the following statement, which needs to be read in its entirety:
First, your Honor. I want to start off with an apology. I am sorry. I am sorry that my actions hurt people. I am sorry that it hurt the United States. At the time of my decisions, as you know, I was dealing with a lot of issues -- issues that are ongoing and they are continuing to affect me
Although they have caused me considerable difficulty in my life, these issues are not an excuse for my actions. I understood what I was doing and the decisions I made. However, I did not truly appreciate the broader effects of my actions. Those effects are clearer to me now through both self-reflection during my confinement in its various forms and through the merits and sentencing testimony that I have seen here.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

It’s Not Unusual:
The Left-Right (S)Mashup in American Politics

A number of commentators have remarked on the “unusual” political coalition of progressive Democrats and libertarian-minded Republicans that came together last week (July 24th) in Congress to support an amendment sponsored by new Michigan Tea Party Republican Justin Amash and long-serving Michigan Democrat John Conyers, an amendment that, as Glenn Greenwald points out, would have required "the FISA court under Sec. 215 [of the Patriot Act] to order the production of records that pertain only to a person under investigation [emphasis in original]," an amendment that, in other words, required the FISA court to act in accordance with the plain meaning of the law and the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, which states, in full:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
The passage of the Amash-Conyers amendment, mandating respect for this constitutional right, would have effectively de-funded the NSA program that bulk collects telephone records of all Americans – an outcome the President, along with the leadership of both political parties, could not permit. To their chagrin, however, they faced surprisingly strong and widespread sentiment in favor of the amendment (and the Constitution). 
Conyers was joined by well-known progressive Democrats like Barbara Lee, Rush Holt, James Clyburn, Nydia Velázquez, Alan Grayson, and Keith Ellison, as well as by the newly-elected representative from Hawaii, Tulsi Gabbard  one of the first two female combat veterans to serve as a member of Congress, who said: “Countless men and women from my state of Hawai‘i and all across the country have worn the uniform and put their lives on the line to protect our freedoms and our liberties…I cannot, in good conscience, vote to take a single dollar from the pockets of hard-working taxpayers from across the country to pay for programs which infringe on the very liberties and freedoms our troops have fought and died for.”

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