October 2012


Wells Fargo: Don’t break the law — leave cancer patients alone

*This is the naked face of greed and power, and it wishes to remain hidden behind “feel good” slogans like “Together We’ll Go Far”.

Wells Fargo has gone where no one with a scintilla of humanity would tread.

But in signing this petition, you will assure that its sins will not be committed in silence.

And its heartless acts will not go unchallenged.


Super PACs, Nonprofits Favored Romney Over Obama: Citizens United Decision Helped Romney Neutralize Obama’s Fundraising Advantage
by Michael Beckel and Russ Choma
Open Secrets Blog / Center for Responsive Politics

*Sandy isn’t the only source of a fetid flood that has had a devastating impact on our lives.

Our voices are drowned out in the torrential deluge of dollars unleashed by this perfect storm of judicial caprice and corporate connivance.


Struggle, Loss, Ruin in Sandy’s Wake
East Coast residents face devastation and long road to recovery
– Common Dreams staff


Sierra Club Scrapbook
Big Coal Bullying Prompts University to Destroy Artwork

*They may not know art

But they know what they can do to what they don’t like


Global Warming and Sandy: Heating of the Oceans Fuels Record Storm, Leaving Millions Without Power


Bainport Day 50: Workers at Bain-Owned Plant Ask Romney to Save Their Jobs from Going to China

*This is Exhibit A in why DN! is far less than it could, and should, be.

Goodman could have used this situation to talk about how both major parties have screwed workers here and abroad, by being fronts for globalized exploitation, even as they play on nativist sentiments.

But instead the segment morphs into a free campaign ad for Dear Misleader, courtesy of Gerard.

Call it “The exception to *some* rulers”.


As Sandy Recovery Begins, Romney Draws Scrutiny for Campaign Vow to Gut FEMA, Emergency Relief

*The Republicans are light years beyond the pale on this, but while the Democrats may be better on dealing with the aftermath of these disasters, both parties are responsible for the fearsome toll they take, through their fealty to the fossil fuel cabal.

Perhaps it’s nature’s way of reminding us of that by submerging both Romney/Ryan and Obama/Biden yard signs under its roiling waters.



Industrial ‘Ocean Grabbing’ Causing Untold Damage: UN Expert
‘Future generations will pay the price when the oceans run dry’
– Common Dreams staff


We Are All from New Orleans Now: Climate Change, Hurricanes and the Fate of America’s Coastal Cities
by Mike Tidwell

*We can build the barricades that may spare us from the awesome power of nature

But our true hope lies in the breaching of those that prevent us from exercising our own


Survival and Dignity in an Afghan Winter
by Kathy Kelly

*The fetid fruits of “liberation”


Institute for Public Accuracy
Over 50 Dead in Haiti from Hurricane; Nearly 400,000 in Tents — Why?

*The water floods the favelas of the poor

The money floods the mansions of the rich


Thousands Held in NYC Jail Will Not Be Evacuated Even As Surrounding Areas Face Storm Surge

*Another meaning for “solitary confinement”, amplifying Dostoyevsky’s admonition that “The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.”


Sandy Pummels East Coast; Historic Storm Leaves 16 Dead, Streets Submerged, Millions Without Power

*It will be interesting to see how the power structure deals with the implications of this disaster.

Will there simply be a blackout of any mention of climate change, will an attempt be made to attribute this to the vagaries of natural factors, or will the baldfaced truth refuse to be submerged under the oily waters of propaganda flowing from the reactionary media and the suppression of corpress outlets, forcing the issue into the open?

Should the last scenario come to pass, we may see a shift in tactics from outright denial and ignoring of the obvious, to preaching the gospel of geoengineering, pimping a techno fix, while business as usual continues.

What we do know is that, absent mass action on our part, nothing of consequence will be done to avert catastrophe on a global scale.  The economic and political elites are in a death embrace, determined to extract every last drop of profit from the ravaging of this planet, heedless to the onrushing reality of their own demise.

Our only hope lies within ourselves, and will require a level of humanity our conditioning will mitilate mightily against.

Will we give wings to our better angels

Or remain grounded in our baser instincts?


(Note:  The above link was originally to the entire program, which was initially presented en toto rather than in segments due to the conditions caused by the storm.)


On Eve of Austerity Vote, Greek Newspapers Expose Billions in Overseas Banks
Journalist faces jailtime for “doing his job”
– Common Dreams staff

*It’s not Greek to anyone who understands the meaning of “plutocracy”

Especially the Greeks


Romney-Ryan: Send FEMA “Back to the Private Sector”
As Sandy bears down, campaign confirms support for position
– Common Dreams staff

*”We’re sorry … all lines are currently busy.

Please continue to hold, and an emergency management associate will be with you as soon as possible.

Did you know that Premium subscribers enjoy access to our exclusive No Time to Waste ™ service package?

Ask your associate for details.

Again, we apologize for the delay, and appreciate your choosing Disaster Solutions as your emergency response provider.

Please continue to hold.

… “


Watching Sandy, Ignoring Climate Change
by Elizabeth Kolbert

*Was Dear Misleader’s response Orwellian, or Kafkaesque?

It certainly would suffice as an example of either at merriam-webster.com, wouldn’t it?


Geoengineering: Testing the Waters
by Naomi Klein


Why Elections Matter—and Why We’re Still Arguing About It
by Phyllis Bennis

*I’ll add my own analogy to Bennis’ drowning scenario.

Imagine two landlords.

One you have to harangue to get any repairs done, and who raises the
rent without fail at every opportunity.

The other is actively attempting to evict you.

Now, which one would you rather fight with?

We’re going to have to fight someone regardless of what happens
November 6, aren’t we?

I’ll go with the mofo who lives on the path of least resistance.

But I’m not going to condemn anyone who can posit a rational argument
that leads to a different result, even if in the end I think it will
be less efficacious.

The important thing is to put aside that disagreement after the
election, and work together to both avoid the end of the world as we
know it

And to create the one we know we must bring into being.


10 Filthy-Rich, Tax-Dodging Hypocrites Pushing Disastrous Austerity on America
The Fix the Debt coalition is using the so-called “fiscal cliff” to push the same old corporate agenda of more tax breaks while shifting the burden on to the rest of us.
by Sarah Anderson and Scott Klinger

*These bastards have the fix in

And it has diddley to do with downsizing the debt


Bill McKibben on Hurricane Sandy and Climate Change: “If There Was Ever a Wake-up Call, This Is It”

*You have to wonder if climate change on this planet is the focus of a reality series on some other one – perhaps Vulcan – with viewers shaking their heads at the utter insanity of allowing things to have gotten this far, and marveling at the propaganda that facilitates such unfathomable irrationality.

If so, I’m sure it’s a ratings monster.

A planet destroyed by the only species capable of reason, and suicidally determined not to engage in it?

You can’t make this stuff up

As much as we might dearly wish that were the case.


Frankenstorm: Meteorologist Warns Hurricane Sandy an Outgrowth of Global Warming’s Extreme Weather

*It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature

And she’ll let you know it in no uncertain terms.

Geoengineering is the height of human hubris.

Perhaps there’s some role for the most careful implementation of it as a “Hail Mary”, in keeping with Masters’ analogy, but if there isn’t radical change starting now, I doubt anything it can offer will be of much use.


Nuclear Plants from Virginia to Vermont Could Be Impacted from Massive Hurricane Sandy

*An atom-sized capacity for logic

And a Hiroshima-sized capacity for greed


Hurricane Sandy Kills 51 in Haiti, Leaving Behind Fears of Disease Outbreak and Growing Toll



Remote US Base at Heart of Drone Wars Revealed in New Report
US base has ‘crowded the skies over the Horn of Africa’ with drones
– Common Dreams staff


Dept of Justice Sues State of Mississippi over “School to Prison” Pipeline
Alleges African-American and disabled students systematically targeted, rights violated
– Common Dreams staff

*Old times there are not forgotten

Because they never really ended.

Take it from an ol’ Suthen boy.


Fukushima May Still Be Leaking Radiation Into Sea
Elevated levels of caesium in fish indicate radiation is still being released, according to a scientist’s findings
– Common Dreams staff


Animal Rights Fight to “Keep Cows on Grass”
Growth of European “mega-dairies” threaten to confine cows, permanently
– Common Dreams staff


The Victims of Fallujah’s Health Crisis Are Stifled by Western Silence
To research a possible link between US bombardment and rates of birth defects and pediatric cancer in Iraq is a moral imperative
by Ross Caputi


Suppression Surges as Election Nears
by Aura Bogado

*MTV:  Rock the Vote!

GOP:  Block the Vote!


The Formula for ‘Equal Opportunity’: Why Affirmative Action Isn’t Enough
by Michelle Chen

*Chen’s last paragraph presents a conundrum.

If one of the goals is to give women and minorities equal opportunity to advance to managerial positions, how does that translate into “overturn(ing) old hierarchies”?

It doesn’t matter what gender or race a boss is.  They will always seek to “exploit an underclass”, because that’s what the entity they work for demands of them in order to maximize profits.

If we want to end that exploitation, we need to work toward the end of the hierarchial structures that promote it

And not simply seek to make them more diverse.


Big Ag Ad Blitz Puts GMO Labeling in Jeopardy
California GMO Labeling Supporters Confront $34 Million Opposition and 13-Point Poll Slide
by Rebekah Wilce


Journalism in the Obama Age Shows the Real Media Bias
A new Rolling Stone interview with the president shows subservience to power, not partisan favor, is what drives the press corps
by Glenn Greenwald

*Greenwald’s spot on regarding the corpress’ royal treatment of one who is supposed to be a public servant, regardless of party, but I do think there is a bias in favor of the Republican narrative, allowing it to drive coverage and context, which is in part a reaction to the decades of being accused of affording that privilege to the Democrats.

A more salient factor, of course, is the economic and political interests of its owners.


Center for Media and Democracy
Corporate Slush Fund Pays for State Lawmakers’ Junkets
Internal records show ALEC corporations have spent an estimated $4 million to send legislators to posh resorts since 2006

*The high life

For the low lifes


FAIR Media Advisory
The Moderators’ Agendas
What was–and wasn’t–asked at debates

*Unquestionable content


Who Owns the World? Noam Chomsky on U.S.-Fueled Dangers, from Climate Change to Nuclear Weapons

*As per usual, essential reading

And the sort that DN! treats as special programming, rather than the essential norm.



NPR Could Use Some ‘Energy Independence’ of Its Own

*Some jokes never get old …


How long has it been since some wit made the sage observation that “PBS” could easily stand for “Petroleum Broadcasting Service”?

As for its hoary donation come on, a more accurate reflection of the reality is in order:

“You put the ‘public’ in ‘public broadcasting’

And we take it out”


‘Expect Resistance’: Utah Tar Sands Project Gets Green Light
Project moves forward without a water pollution discharge permit
– Common Dreams staff


WikiLeaks Reveals ‘Systematized Human Rights Abuses’ at US Detention Facilities
Docs show ‘anatomy of the beast that is post-9/11 detention’
– Common Dreams staff


Fukushima Operators Struggle to Contain ‘Outrageous Amount’ of Radioactive Water
– Common Dreams staff


As Election Day Closes In, Voters Bombarded by Misinformation Campaigns
– Common Dreams staff


Current TV
Terry O’Neill: Men Like Mourdock ‘Refuse to Acknowledge the Full Humanity of Women’


The Education-Testing Complex of Mass Destruction
Companies that create and administer standardized tests are making a fortune in this era of test-based accountability
by Marion Brady


Proposing a Vision of a New Earth
by Rajesh Makwana

*We are faced with a stark choice


Or Disintegrate


What’s At Stake When Billionaires Try to Buy Our Democracy
by Rose Ann DeMoro


America’s Failed Formula for Worldwide War
How the Empire Changed Its Face, But Not Its Nature
by Nick Turse


Institute for Public Accuracy
Disinformation on California GMO-labeling Initiative

*A steady diet of food falsehoods


Prop 34: Ex-San Quentin Prison Warden Jeanne Woodford Backs California Measure to End Death Penalty

*At no point is the utter immorality of killing someone who can no longer pose a threat addressed, by Woodford or Goodman.  The argument may be made that the “practical” reasons for ending the death penalty are what will motivate most to vote against it, but why this can’t be stated clearly as well causes me to look askance at just what’s being advocated for here.

Related to that is the notion of life without parole.  I don’t know the circumstances leading to the parole of Massie, but should others who would no longer pose a threat be denied an opportunity to re-enter society because a horrible error was made in his case?

Parole for those who have committed murder should be granted with extreme caution, but to say that someone cannot be rehabilitated should also be a judgment made with that same level of caution.

For me, it comes down to much more than ensuring an innocent person isn’t put to death, and certainly much more than saving money.

Without naivete, realizing that very few will merit release, I believe that the possibility of rehabilitation cannot be precluded, if we are to be able to say that we have fully engaged our humanity on this issue.


A Life Sentence for Stealing Socks? California’s Prop 36 to Decide Future of Three-Strikes Law

*I’d like to know more about why futha muckas like Schultz and Norquist support this, wouldn’t you?  Goodman just lets the bogus explanation of “saving money” and “ineffective public safety policy” slide by.

Since when did persons like this give a damn about saving money or keeping the public safe?

I mean, the money isn’t being taken out of poor and working class pockets, and we’re talking about more than the “public” these bastards pal around with, aren’t we?

Might it be that appearing to be “reasonable” in this instance buys some useful PR for the futher implementation of police state policies?

Just supposition, since that wasn’t deemed important enough to pursue.


Valeria “Munique” Tachiquin: U.S. Agent Kills Young Mother of 5 in Latest of Growing Border Deaths

*Sounds like Tackett was a perfect fit for the CBP.

Which is why he was hired.



GOP Senate Candidate: Pregnancy from Rape is “Gift from God”
Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock, recently endorsed by Mitt Romney, shocks with comments at debate
– Common Dreams staff

*This would seem to pose a conflict with what I assume is Mourdock’s “tough on crime” stance.

If the rapist is doing “God’s will”, would he consider that an exonerating defense?


Exposed ‘Kill Matrix’ Gives Permanence to US ‘War on Terror’
The Washington Post reports on the codifying of Obama’s ‘kill list’
– Common Dreams staff


Released Docs Reveal Deadly Blow to Whales
After BP Disaster Documents obtained by Greenpeace show officials controlling information about wildlife affected by the disaster
– Common Dreams staff

*Only the truth is wiped clean


Climate Change Scientist Sues for Defamation
Michael Mann was accused of fraud, manipulating data and compared to Sandusky
– Common Dreams staff


Industrial Pollution Brings Suffering to 125 Million People: Report
Increasing demand of ‘developed’ countries at root of problem
– Common Dreams staff


Canadian Government Continues to Choose Dirty Energy Over Democracy
by David Suzuki

*And after the tar sands have been dug up, the corpse of our chance for survival can be dumped in the hole


Helping Republicans Find Real Voter Fraud in America
by Jim Hightower

*Funny how this never makes it into the debates, or onto the campaign trail, isn’t it?

Well, I’m sure at least the Republicans find it amusing that they can steal elections without a whimper from their assumptive adversaries.


New Report: American Lives at Risk from Unsafe Foods
Food Recalls Rack Up $227 Million in Economic Costs in 2011 and 2012


Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER)
Judge Halts GE Crops on Southeastern Wildlife Refuges
Separate Ruling Leaves Door Ajar for GE Crops on Midwestern Refuges for Now


Institute for Public Accuracy
Forgotten Haiti: Two Years After Cholera Outbreak


Michael Pollan: California’s Prop 37 Fight to Label GMOs Could Galvanize Growing U.S. Food Movement

*Pollan’s comments about Obama are typical of the supporter who can’t deny the bastard hasn’t done what he promised, so he puts his betrayal in the context of “a political judgment”, stating that “he gets it”, but needs to have sufficient public support to do what he knows is the right thing.

That construct is as divorced from reality as Zilberman’s attempt to greenwash GM foods, don’t you think?

But let’s say he’s correct.  What does that say about the integrity of the man?  Don’t we elect, and expect, a president to lead, to stick her or his neck out for what’s right, rather than putting a finger to the political winds, giving us the finger in the process?

Regardless of whether legislation can be passed, it should be incumbent on a president to use the office’s visibility, to ascend the bully pulpit, in order to define just what this country’s values are, and what must be done to realize them.

This is all fantasy, I know.  But I think it’s important to speak of what should be, while being fully cognizant of what is.

Pollan either is unable or unwilling to see that reality.


Michael Pollan: From GMOs to NYC’s Soda Ban, Local Efforts Challenge Agri-Giants’ National Control

*And of course not only has Obama not done “the right thing”, he’s also aided and abetted those who do the wrong thing.

It’s rather amazing that Pollan can engage in apologia, then turn right around and blithely expound upon Michael Taylor’s transits through the revolving door connecting the adminstration with the corporate world, apparently sensing no contradiction.

And regardless of the benefit of the big soda ban, to speak of Bloomberg’s “courage” while persons of color and Muslims are daily subjected to police state tactics is the epitome of a single issue mindset, wouldn’t you say?



Greenpeace: ‘Unreliable’ Monitoring of Fukushima Radiation
Clean-up efforts ‘misguided,’ residents express ‘distinct distrust’
– Common Dreams staff


Planned Parenthood Victory: Federal Appeals Court Says Indiana Can’t Cut Funding Over Abortions
– Common Dreams staff


My Big Fat American Election
How Big Can One Election Get?
by Tom Engelhardt

*Considering the silence on climate change

And the noise of fracking, drilling and blasting

You might want to call it

“Going out with a bang”


Binders Full of Women and the Matriarchy Myth
by Linda McQuaig

*I can’t help but recall those old Virginia Slims ads.

Celebrating empty symbolism isn’t much different from

“You’ve got your own cigarette now, baby

You’ve come a long, long way”

Is it?


How to Create a Multi-Level Movement for Climate Justice
by George Lakey

*The term may be off-putting due the propaganda fed the public, but any movement that isn’t anti-capitalist at its core is doomed to failure on the greatest goal – a transformation of society from one of exploitation to one of cooperation and shared humanity.

I don’t say that naively.  I realize the obstacles involved, and the odds against it.

But I also know that unless the system which has dominated much of the world for these last centuries, and the greed and lust for power that has been the bain of our species’ existence from time immemorial, unless those are consigned to the dustbin of history, that fate will be our own.

It’s not a matter of ideology.

It’s a matter of biology.

All the patient and practical strategizing in the world is worthless if it can only take us to the ecological equivalent of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act.

We have to play for all the marbles

Or lose our spot on the the big blue one we live on.


Common Cause
Report Details Massive Chemical Investments in Lobbying and Campaigns


Groups Urge Penn. Governor to Reverse Policy That Delays Warning of Fracking Water Pollution
New policy puts public at risk, adds unnecessary red-tape


WaPo: Racism in Obama TV Ad?

*If the implication of the ad is that anyone who proclaims, regardless of sincerity, their abhorrence of death-dealing poison profiteers, is “not one of us”

I’d say the message is spot on.

If the “us” is the Obama administration, and its fealty to fossil fuel fiefdoms.

From the steamy Gulf to the frozen Arctic, they’ve never met a drill bit they didn’t like.

So Romney gets ragged for posturing on pollution

And Obama gets dissed for claiming to care about climate change.

If only the jabs were justified.


Morning Joe’s Drone Debate: Whose Four-Year-Old Girls Should Be Killed?

*Let’s be clear here.

Scarborough’s engaging in fantasy when he compares the horrors of drone strikes to, as he puts it, “trying to go in, take the risk, get the terrorists out of hiding… “

Either method results in the death of innocents, both violate international law, and both run roughshod over the rights of the accused, making the President and his surrogates judge, jury and executioner.

As for Klein’s response …

I’d call it a not-so-distant cousin to a precept that has informed US imperialism since its initial manifestation:

“Kill ’em all

Let God sort ’em out”

http://www.fair.org/blog/2012/10/23/morning-joes-drone-debate-whose-four-year-old-girls-should-be-killed/ .

Institute for Public Accuracy
* Romney’s War Cabinet * Israel’s Record in Gaza and Nukes * How the World Sees the Debates


Part Two: Shane Bauer: “Solitary in Iran Nearly Broke Me. Then I Went Inside America’s Prisons”

*Solitary may serve a legitimate purpose.

Sadism never does.

Separating an inmate from the general prison population can be a reasonable action, but treating him as subhuman is as vicious an act as that which he may have been convicted of, and ultimately more dangerous to society, for it is the state, acting in our name, that is engaging in such heinous behavior.

And that echoes Dostoyevsky’s dire observation, doesn’t it?



Did the Dark Money Group that Spurred a Landmark Ruling Mislead the IRS?
by Kim Barker, ProPublica, and Emma Schwartz, Frontline

*Welcome to Big Lie country


‘Our Rage Is Indescribable’: Okinawan Officials Slam ‘Yet Another Incident,’ Impunity in Wake of Rape by US Soldiers
Okinawan officials pass resolution on Monday expressing “overwhelming indignation” over rape of Japanese woman by US forces
– Common Dreams staff


Thousands Gather at Northern Gateway to Protest Pipeline
Mass sit-in planned at British Columbia Legislature
– Common Dreams staff


I Stand with Those Who Stand Against Tar Sands Pipelines
by Maude Barlow

*The damage knows no borders

And neither must the determination to end it


Will the Apocalypse Arrive Online?
How Fear of Cyber Attack Could Take Down Your Liberties and the Constitution
by Karen Greenberg


Is GDP’s Reign as the Only Measure of Wealth Coming to an End?
Challenges to the supremacy of gross domestic product, which ignores natural and household contributions, are growing
by Jane Gleeson-White

*It’s always frustrating to read a piece that makes a righteous conclusion – that GDP is a dangerously misleading measure of our quality of life

And then places faith in stalwart defenders of the status quo such as Obama and Sarkozy to rectify the situation.

Highly illogical, Captain.


Friends of the Earth
San Onofre: Hydrogen Gas Leak From Crippled Reactor Exposes Danger of Restart
Friends of the Earth: Edison must immediately say if leak is radioactive


U.S. Media Ignore Toxic Legacy of U.S. Weapons

*The poison of implicit propaganda


“Long Distance Revolutionary”: New Documentary Tells Untold Story of Mumia Abu-Jamal’s Life Journey

*A cell often awaits those who refuse to sell out.

Thirty years on, Abu-Jamal’s conscience still has no bar code.


EXCLUSIVE: “No Way Out”–Freed Hiker Shane Bauer on Solitary Confinement from Iran to United States

*Dostoyevsky said, “The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.”

And by who and what is deemed a danger to that society

Which reveals who holds sway in that society.



Scenes of ‘Dust Bowl Days’ Return As Oklahoma Storm Causes Highway Pileup
Year of high temps and record drought portends climate future for once fertile croplands
– Common Dreams staff

*A perfect storm

Of profit and power


Fracking Poisoning Families at Alarming Rate: Report
– Common Dreams staff


Warnings of Domestic Spying as Oakland Police Seek Drones
Local activists worry about abuse, push for updated safeguards
– Common Dreams staff

*Evil eyes in the skies


Anti-Austerity Allies Coming Together for Coordinated European Strikes
Spain’s largest unions join call for multi-country day of “action and solidarity” against assault on public programs
– Common Dreams staff


The End of the New World Order
by Seumas Milne

*Ever have the notion that capitalism and imperialism are like hostage takers who kill their captives

And then blow their own brains out?


US Justice Likely Coming Soon to Benghazi with Extrajudicial Executions
If the Obama administration identifies suspects in the consulate attack, should they simply be killed without a trial?
by Glenn Greenwald

*Shoot first

No one asks questions later


Making Labor Pay and Why We Need Universal Pensions
Recent battles in Wisconsin and San Jose expose challenges of a secure future
by Katherine Sciacchitano

*A great deal of useful information, but I think there’s a defeatist attitude here that presupposes no significant forward movement in the struggles for workers rights and taxing the wealthy, as well as no accounting for what will be a dramatically altered reality as the worsening effects of climate change kick in, and make all long term assumptions based on current conditions tenuous in the extreme.

Both morality and pragmatism compel us to look beyond attempts at making the present economic system more equitable, to expand our vision of what the world will look like

And what we want it to look like.


Pesticide Industry Backed Opponents of GMO Labeling Get Criminal in California
by Zack Kaldveer

*Truth in labeling

These are some low down lying sumbitches


A Question for Anti-Choicers: How, Exactly, Would Your Rape Exception Work?
by Bridgette Dunlap


Syriza – reality is forcing us to forget the old ways of working
Alexis Benos is a Professor in Public Health at Thessaloniki’s Aristotle University, and was an electoral candidate for the left wing coalition Syriza in Thessaloniki. Alexis is a member of Syriza’s local coordinating committee and also a member of the party’s central committee. He was interviewed by John Lister.

*Examining a movement in depth that usually receives only cursory coverage in US “alternative media”.

Contrast with DEMOCRACY NOW!’s devoting today’s program to a hagiographic doco on George McGovern’s candidacy, replete with celebrity soundbites.

Benos keeps returning to the theme of “getting serious”.

In a political culture seemingly more defined by image than substance, that’s no mean feat, is it?


Every Green Energy Failure Is News

*What’s the flip side of greenwashing?


Gotta be a better term than that.



Institute for Public Accuracy
* Syria * Pakistani Malala Yousafzai’s Shooting

*Child abuse from all quarters

But this child has shown far more wisdom than many adults, hasn’t she?



Court of Appeals Strikes Down Defense of Marriage Act
Law violates US Constitution’s equal protection clause, says circuit court
– Common Dreams staff

*I hope Millhiser’s optimism is justified, but I wouldn’t bet the rent money on Anthony Kennedy’s fealty to fairness, would you?


Summer Camp for Super Rich Kids: Training Ground for the Future 1%
Private wealth managers line up to coach and court the next generation of financial elites
– Common Dreams staff

*Raising the next crop of ruthless bastards and heartless hedonists


Defeat Romney, Without Illusions about Obama
Advice to progressives in swing states, vote for reelection
by Daniel Ellsberg

*This piece is clearly eliciting a strong reaction, as evidenced by the 350 replies at present.

Let me add my two cents.

I think Ellsberg has made a compelling case for voting for this murderous bastard, and for other Democrats, depending on varying circumstances.

(Living in Wisconsin, I will vote for the “progressive” Tammy Baldwin for Senator, fully aware of the necessity for quotes around that label.)

I’ve said this ad nauseum, but electoral politics is almost always about damage control, and Ellsberg points out the severe damage that will ensue if the prospective Bain Boy of our existence gets to take his morning dump in the Master Bathroom of the White House.

But I want to point out another damaging result that can not be replicated, if we’re to have any chance of mere survival, let alone bringing about a world of peace and justice.

Four years ago, many naive and foolish persons drank the “Hope and Change” Kool-Aid, and voted for Dear Misleader, not as a “lesser evil”, but as the embodiment of their values.

(For the record, I didn’t, although in retrospect, the same arguments held then as they do today.)

Then they didn’t do diddley, secure in the knowledge that they had done their duty as citizens of both this country and the world by electing such a paragon of progressive virtue.

Untold numbers of dead and suffering souls later, I have to hope that the illusion has been stripped, shredded and flushed, and that the realization that it’s what we do, not whom we elect, that will determine our future, has taken hold.

So, I’ll take a few minutes to walk over to West Elementary and fill in a few ovals.

Then I’ll get back to doing what really matters, as woefully inadequately as I may do so.

If enough of us follow suit, the next four years will be unshirted hell for whomever is in the Oval Office.

And will give us a shot at avoiding it on a planetary scale.


The Nobel Peace Prize for War
by Michael Parenti

*Taking the prize for infernal irony


Clean Coal is a Hoax, Mr. President, So Drop it
by Jeff Biggers

*”Clean coal”

And Dear Misleader’s dirty lies


Alliance from Hell: Washington’s Pakistan Meltdown
How the US and Pakistan Became the Dysfunctional Nuclear Family of International Relations
by Dilip Hiro

*I’m too ignorant to credibly critique Hiro’s analysis, but I thought it worth sharing on a subject I imagine many others are less than knowledgable on.


Food & Water Watch
Marking the 40th Anniversary of the Clean Water Act By Protecting It
Statement from Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter

*Conjuring the black magic of the marketplace


Congressperson Dennis Kucinich Stimulus
Package Used to Saddle Local Ratepayers with Growing Debt
Kucinich asks Department of Treasury to Examine Potential Misuse of Build America Bonds

*Paying for the privilege of being poisoned


Minnesota Anti-Gay Constitutional Amendment Fuels National Battle over Marriage Equality


Greg Palast: “Mitt Romney’s Bailout Bonanza: How He Made Millions from the Rescue of Detroit”

*I wouldn’t get too enamored of the administration’s actions against Singer.  I think it’s an example of the conflict between those who see the need for some limits to greed, to keep the system from consuming itself, and those whose sole purpose is to make as much profit as possible, and damn the consequences.

If Dear Misleader were truly a stalwart foe of vulture capitalism, he would be exposing this scheme at every opportunity, wouldn’t he?

And bagging the election in the process.

But he doesn’t, and he can’t, because he allowed it to occur, despite his misgivings.

That’s how the game is played.  Even when there are differences among elites, those differences can’t be exposed, for fear that it would make plain the whole rotten mess.

And that rot is on display every day on the campaign trail, isn’t it?


Greg Palast on “Billionaires & Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps”

*Is there any greater example of Newspeak in the US than “voter fraud”?

Orwell’s ghost is gyrating at 3000 RPM.


Six Arrested in Illinois Protesting Bain Capital’s Plan to Close Sensata Plant, Move Jobs to China

*Among that “lot of people coming to town”, don’t expect a large contingent from the corpress.

I mean, it doesn’t have the news value of a photo op at a soup kitchen, does it?


Part Two: Camila Vallejo & Noam Titelman on Massive Chilean Student Protests, Post-Pinochet Chile



Austerity Showdown as EU Summit Set to Open
Hollande draws line in sand; Greek general strike
– Common Dreams staff

*This smells of classic “good cop/bad cop”, don’t you think?

Merkel makes the threats, and Hollande makes with the empathy.

But he doesn’t talk about rescinding the measures already meted out, only of backing off imposing more.

Might it be that the uprisings across the region have the neoliberals rattled, and opting for a change in style, but not substance, to mollify the masses?

But I think folks now know they can fight back, and if this is indeed the gambit

It’s a goner.


Privatization Pushback: Civil Society Slams Water Privatization Conditions for EU Bailouts
Letter from groups to EU Commission says plan is “economically, socially and democratically flawed”
– Common Dreams staff


Obama Aides Launch Preemptive Attack on New Iran Plan
by Gareth Porter
Inter Press Service

*Where does the irrationality lie?

Under a turban

Or above a tailored suit?


Canadian Government Knew of Illegal Geoengineering Scheme
Investigation by the “Guardian” shows officials failed to act
– Common Dreams staff


The Dirty Little Secret of Private Equity Profits
by Jim Hightower 

*Practicing the Golden Rule with each other

And the Rule of Gold with us


In a World Hungry for Biofuels, Food Security Must Come First
Growing crops for food and fuel together can work but farmers and policymakers must prioritise hungry people and think local
by Olivier De Schutter

*What’s never made clear is just why there’s any need for biofuels in the first place.

What energy needs are so dependent on their availability?

Why can’t those needs be met by other renewables that don’t compete with food production?


The Risky Business of Eating in America
How can eating too much rice can give you cancer?
by Jill Richardson

*”Here in the United States, we treat things as safe until proven dangerous.”

And often long after, if the poison of profit is present


Worldwatch Institute
Degrowth Offers Alternative to Global Consumer Culture
Worldwatch Institute highlights the dangers of overconsumption

*The logic’s unassailable that we have to “shrink to fit” this world, but with no mention of the perniciousness of the profit imperative or the necessity of work done *with* others, rather than *for* an employer, these policies can’t achieve the goals of dignity and equality that would truly signal a transformation of our existence on this planet, can they?


Noise and Nonsense on Benghazi Attack

*It seems to me the administration wants to portray the attack as unrelated to the video, as that strengthens its case for intervention in Libya, as outlined here:

Mission Creep in Libya: Drones in the Sky, Boots on the Ground
Reports show escalating US involvement following embassy assault in Benghazi
– Common Dreams staff


Of course, no questions will be asked, or allowed, in the debates about the morality or legality of such actions, will they?


Institute for Public Accuracy
Why the Silence on Global Warming?

*If there are beings on other planets, I wonder if they also search for intelligent life elsewhere.

If they’ve watched these debates, they’ve scratched Earth off the list.


Green Party’s Jill Stein, Cheri Honkala Arrested, Handcuffed to Chair After Trying to Enter Debate

*A surfeit of demagogy within

A subversion of democracy without



Student Loans Bear ‘Uncanny Resemblance’ to Subprime Crisis
– Common Dreams staff

*A different type of “debt ceiling”

About to come crashing down


Mission Creep in Libya: Drones in the Sky, Boots on the Ground
Reports show escalating US involvement following embassy assault in Benghazi
– Common Dreams staff

*”If you do harm to America … “

The irony drips

And the blood flows


The Week the World Stood Still: The Cuban Missile Crisis and Ownership of the World
by Noam Chomsky

*Essential reading, which begs the question

A half century on, will Dear Misleader likewise have ascended into the liberal hagiography, heedless of the horrors he unleashed?

An unlikely outcome, as those still alive most likely will be fully absorbed in the desperate business of remaining so, and thus will have little time for the idolatry of one who played such a pivotal role in their fate.


All Together Now: World Food Day 2012
by Jezra Thompson


EU Support for Israeli Crimes Makes It Unworthy of Nobel Peace Prize
by Omar Barghouti

*A more fitting honor would have been the George Orwell “War Is Peace” Prize, wouldn’t you say?


US Joins Israel in Blockading Education to Students in Gaza
by Ann Wright


The Arizonification of America
by Jeff Biggers

*I’d be cautious about alliances with the likes of Slippery William and the Dems.

Betrayal is not just a faded fact from the history books.

Left out of this is any mention of Dear Misleader’s backstabbing deportation policies, which constitute a good deal more than a little bit of history repeating, don’t they?


Friends of the Earth
Food Crisis Summit: Governments Should Scrap Biofuels, Not Push GM Crop

*Fill tummies

Not tanks


Institute for Public Accuracy
Empowering Voter Choice: * Killing the Congressional Gerrymander * Instant Runoff Voting

*Instant runoff voting sounds promising, and I’d like to know more about it.

As for “the decline of the center”

We have a huge center in Congress.

It’s called the Democratic Party.

And I have questions about the “safe state” argument.  If significant numbers voted for third party candidates, might that not make some of those states “unsafe” for Obama?


Sympathy for Afghan Girl Shows Limits of Concern

*It’s always “immensely frustrating” to the corpress when someone insists on dealing in reality.

It makes their job that much more difficult, doesn’t it?


Playing the Role of ‘Journalist’ at a ‘Presidential Debate’

*This is something of a show of “independence” on Crowley’s part, isn’t it?

I mean, she’s to be the selector – or more accurately, the censor – of audience questions, and will make certain no deviation from the script occurs.  Her professed concern for open debate would seem to conflict with that role, don’t you think?

I think this might be more a matter of feeling personally slighted than any concern for “journalistic integrity”.

If she had any fealty to the latter, she wouldn’t be party to such a sham.

And she never would have been considered for the position in the first place, would she?


Secret Debate Contract Reveals Obama and Romney Campaigns Exclude Third Parties, Control Questions

*Call it a dog and pony show

Or more precisely, what comes out their rear ends


Glenn Greenwald: Presidential Debates Highlight “Faux Objectivity” of Mainstream Journalists

*Yes, there are differences, and those differences can have profound impacts on our lives.

But the similarities ultimately will make those differences moot, for they will lead to a world where whatever rights that are protected to some degree will be subsumed by the struggle to survive the oppression and devastation wrought by the rapacious of a profit system both major parties are sworn to promote at all costs.

So, in the short term, perhaps choosing the lesser of two evils has some utility, but if that isn’t paired with the above knowledge, and the commitment to confront that lesser evil as well, whatever benefit gained from it will be short lived.

Slowing the car down doesn’t keep it from hurtling off the cliff.

It just buys us some time to grab the wheel and swerve away from catastrophe.


Chilean Student Movement Awarded for Organizing Nation’s Largest Protests Since Pinochet Era

*Gruesome experiments in a nation turned neoliberal laboratory



Illegal Scheme Exemplifies Threat of Geoengineering
Violates UN Resolutions, Could Worsen Global Warming
– Common Dreams staff


NYT Admits: We Have Not “Aggressively Challenged” Obama on Drones
Public editor says ‘paper of record’ has not pushed back against administration on secretive program
– Common Dreams staff

*A guileful “admission” of guilt


The Privilege of Being Human: Ecological Crisis and the Need to Challenge the Twenty Percent
by Joseph Nevins

*We can consume the earth

Or we can assume our role as its defender

We can make the choice

Or have our recalcitrance leave us lacking one


Giant Walmart vs. the Small Farmer
by Vandana Shiva

*Keeping ’em down on the farm

With the bootheel of Big Business on their neck


Much at Stake as Possibility of Tar Sands Pipeline Looms
Pumping diluted bitumen to Portland presents the risk of a major spill tainting Sebago Lake or Casco Bay
by Kristin Moe


Five Ways Deregulation Is Ripping America Apart
by Paul Buchheit


And unfeeling


Keystone XL Blockade
Over 50 Enter Tar Sands Blockade Tree Village in Defiance of Police and Legal Repression to Defend Tree-Sitters
Risking arrest, lawsuits protesters rally for massive tree blockade after expansion of TransCanada’s overreaching SLAPP suit


Morgan Stanley Sued for Racial Discrimination in Pushing Predatory Loans to Black Homeowners
Landmark Lawsuit First to Link Bundling of Mortgage-Backed Securities and Racial Discrimination; Suit Charges Violation of Fair Housing Act


Amnesty International Condemns Forced Eviction of Roma Settlements in France that Has Left about 150 Homeless
“Authorities in Seine-Saint-Denis Utterly Failed to Live up to Their Human Rights Obligations,” Says Human Rights Organization


CEOs Tout Austerity–Without Being ‘Ideological’ About It

*Or, to get all scatalogical about it

Yeah, we’ll put some piss in the pot

If you make sure the shit lands on the lowly


Institute for Public Accuracy
* Wal-Mart Strikes * Nobel in Economics

*Refusing to bend to “flexibility”


Texas Landowners Join Environmentalists for Historic Blockade of Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline

*As awful as this is, we have to remember that many people in other parts of the world have been murdered over the profits to be had from oil production.

This is the raw face of capitalism, or whatever term you want to use for unbridled greed and power.

And if that montrous visage isn’t exposed for what it is, what we will face as a consequence will be no less than a world that may no longer support life as we know it.


Koch Brothers Among U.S. Billionaires Pressuring Thousands of Employees to Vote GOP on Election Day

*Call it on the job dog training



Vote Stalkers: Obama, Romney Campaigns Mine Trove of Voters’ Online Data to Win 2012 Election

*The goal of the major parties is to stymie the realization of an informed electorate

And promote the creation of an informed on electorate



‘Recipe for Disaster’: Group Says No Financialization of Nature!
Friends of the Earth International warns against corporate approach as UN biodiversity conference meets
– Common Dreams staff

*They buy now

We all pay later


US Bombing of Iraq: The Toxic Legacy Continues
New study links heavy bombing of Fallujah and Al Basra to staggering rise in birth defects, miscarriages
– Common Dreams staff

*Taking the oil

Leaving the agony


The False Promises of “School Choice”
by Barbara Miner

*Excellent piece, but the implication is that this is purely a Republican shell game.

“Education reform” is the three card monte pimped by both major parties, with Dems denuding the system, making vouchers seem an attractive alternative.

And they are.

To the profiteering winners in this rigged contest.


‘The Courage to Say No to Misogyny’: Statement on the Attack Against 14-Year-Old Malala Yousafzai
by Malalai Joya

*I’m foursquare behind Joya here, but I wish she would have addressed the conundrum of just who do you make peace with, if not the Taliban.

How can you end the hell both countries are going through, and still advance the rights of women?

What I know for certain is I won’t be looking to our gummint for the answer.


Will E-Voting Machines Owned by His Buddies Give Mitt Romney the White House?
by Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman

*So you’d think the Dems would be screaming bloody murder over this, wouldn’t you?

But they never do, do they?

Gore, Kerry, the DNC, lower office candidates …

Nada.  Niente.  Bupkus.

Any way you say it, it spells “complicity”, doesn’t it?

And why is this one of the less than a handful of pieces I’ve read about vote stealing in the “alternative media”?  There’ve been tons of articles on voter ID and other restrictions, and well there should be.

But why is this one an exception to the rule?  Is it a fear of being labeled “conspiracy theorists”?

But there’s no theory here.

Just baldfaced fact.

So why not report it … and report it …

And report it?

You tell me.


Meet the Crawfish-Peeling Guestworkers Who Inspired Walmart Walkouts
How a few courageous workers in small-town Louisiana sparked nationwide actions demanding better wages and working conditions for those who pick, pack, stock, and sell the mega-retailer’s products.
by Cecilia Garza

*The next time some fool prattles on about “excessive regulation”, throw this in their face.

And until bastards like LeBlanc face serious jail time for their crimes, and fines are commensurate with the harm done to human beings, these brave folks will have to continue to fight for their dignity.

And I have no doubt that they will.



Democracy Now!
Romney: Americans Don’t Die from Lack of Health Insurance

*Give him a break.  The man misspoke.

What he meant to say was

“Americans who *matter* don’t die from a lack of health insurance.”

I’m a great deal more that 47% certain that was his meaning.


Texas Ban of Planned Parenthood Could Significantly Increase Unplanned Pregnancies
– Common Dreams staff


Homeowner Struggles Continue as Wall Street Profits Soar
JP Morgan profits, CEO pay at record high as homeowners continue to struggle
– Common Dreams staff


Penn. Governor Greenlights Fracking on College Campuses
– Common Dreams staff


Martha Raddatz and the Faux Objectivity of Journalists
Establishment journalists are creatures of a highly ideological world and often cause ideology to masquerade as neutral fact.
by Glenn Greenwald

*I’ve never bought the theory that corpress journalists are somehow unaware of their biases.

I base that on the premise that if I can grow up in apartheid Miss’ssippi with a daddy who was a member of the White Citizens Council, and still come to the realizations I have today, I can’t see how these obviously intelligent persons can’t do likewise.

So to me it appears to be a willful decision not to, at least in the case of those like Raddatz, who don’t simply work within that warped worldview, but benefit greatly from it.

They have a vested interest in the status quo, and use their positions to protect it.

To think otherwise would be to assume a level of delusion that would make the most avid LSD adherent envious.


What Does the Church Think? Women’s Rights Framed as Religious Question In VP Debate
by Robin Marty


Obama: A Better Adversary
by Mark Engler

*Food for thought

I’m not certain of the validity of Engler’s theory, but I do believe that, in the absence of any real, and perverse, hope that worse conditions under a Republican administration might inspire mass action, the most rational choice is to vote for Dear Misleader, simply for the less heavy foot on the accelerator of the car hurtling toward the edge of the cliff.

That said, I won’t denigrate anyone’s inability to stomach filling in that corrosive circle.

I’m not particularly confident of holding back my own bile come November 6.

Maybe I should bring a roll of paper towels, just in case.


Physicians for a National Health Program
Financial Incentives May Sap Motivation, Undermine Quality: Health Affairs
Article Recent findings in behavioral economics may help explain how pay-for-performance schemes in health care can ‘crowd-out’ intrinsic motivation and worsen performance

*Not only does money not cure all ills

It very well may make them worse


Public Citizen
Contrary to Obama’s Claim, the Three U.S. Free Trade Agreements Passed a Year Ago Today Have not Boosted U.S. Exports
U.S. Exports to Korea Are Down While Imports From Korea and Colombia Have Surged, Expanding Job-Killing U.S. Trade Deficit; Panama Deal not Even in Effect


Debate Deceptions Are a Time-Tested GOP Strategy

*Call it being down with lying on the job


Institute for Public Accuracy
Debate Disinformation on Social Security and Medicare

*Call it “unquestioning content”


Tariq Ali: European Union Awarded Nobel Peace Prize Despite Ties to NATO, Crippling Austerity Cuts

*Taking the prize

For callous, self-congratulatory chutzpah



Report: Private Insurers Profit by Ripping Off Medicare
Researchers say private programs like Medicare Advantage just add waste; Call for reformed, expanded Medicare for All
– Common Dreams staff


IMF Backpedals on Austerity IMF head
Christine Lagarde issues shift, says sometimes it’s better to “go a little bit more slowly”
– Common Dreams staff

*No backpedaling

Just softpedaling

Might it be that the IMF knew all along what impact this would have, and is now reacting to the resistance shown by the people by using the growth data to justify easing up a bit as a way to dampen that defiance?

I can’t say for certain, but it fits with the Machiavellian mambo these bastards dance to, doesn’t it?


Empire and Its Consequences
by Robert C. Koehler

*Only the inhuman can serve inhumanity


On Both Sides of the Border, Teachers Fight Corporatization
by Michelle Chen


Imran Khan’s March Brings Global Attention to CIA Drone Strikes
by Alice Ross


US Supreme Court Finalizes Gift of Immunity to the Telecom Giants
Yet again, the Congress, courts, executive branch and the establishment media work together to protect the nation’s most powerful actors
by Glenn Greenwald

*Fire up a joint

How do you look in orange?

Set fire to the Bill of Rights

The big boys got your back


Today, A Promise to Girls
by Desmond Tutu and Ela Bhatt


Keystone XL Blockade
Blockader Mans Tree Platform in Nature Preserve to Prevent Keystone XL Clear Cut, Launching 2nd Tree Sit Protest


Americans for Safe Access
City of Oakland Fights Back Against Federal Medical Marijuana Asset Forfeiture Campaign Oakland lawsuit in United States District Court to Stop Seizure of Property of Oakland Dispensary

*Think this will be asked about in the next debate?

What planet did you say you were from?


Washington Post Greens Fracking

*Ever notice how “climate change” is hauled out of the closet whenever it’s convenient to use it as a cover for “clean energy” or “sustainable development” scams?

Then tossed right back in when the subject is deep water drilling or tar sands pipelines?

You don’t have to stick to the facts

When you can keep the conversation stuck on the fantasy.


Birthplace of Atomic Bomb, New Mexico Remains Center of Massive U.S. Nuclear Arsenal

*I have to believe Coghlan has a extremely fragile grasp of history to call Reagan “perhaps politically … the foremost abolitionist of all.”

And a pretty weak hold on the present and possible future to praise Dear Misleader for his prevarications.


After Decades of Uranium Mining, Navajo Nation Struggles With Devastating Legacy of Contamination


“Earthship Biotecture”: Renegade New Mexico Architect’s Radical Approach to Sustainable Living

*Pretty ingenious, huh?

When Reynolds made the comment that there’d be no war if we all had what we need, my first thought was that wars – at least wars of empire – aren’t fought over need, but for greed.

And then I thought that if indeed we had what we need, the greedy couldn’t get us to fight for what they say we need, but actually for what they want.

That’s simplistic, I know.  But there’s something to the notion, don’t you think?



Sprint: Improve policies to keep domestic violence victims safe!


Groups: New England Tar Sands Pipeline Plotted ‘Behind Closed Doors’
Oil giants lobby tar sands plan behind closed doors while denying their intention
– Common Dreams staff

*Pipe dreams

And poisonous nightmares


European Parliament Overturns Moratorium on Offshore Arctic Oil and Gas Drilling
– Common Dreams staff


As Eleven Nations Pledge Support, Robin Hood Tax Gains Foothold in Europe
‘It is a matter of social justice. It is time that those who caused the financial crisis help fix it.’
– Common Dreams staff

*A few thoughts

Why a “tiny” tax?  I pay 5.5% sales tax, so this would be less than one percent of that.

And how will such a miniscule levy “end ‘purely speculative, socially useless activities’ and instead ‘promote sustainable, long-term investments that are needed to green our economies.'”

If you’re making oodles of Euros on these, why would paying a pittance for the privilege deter you?

Lastly, regardless of its size, this is essentially a band aid on a broken neck.  As long as profit is the driver of all economic activity, exploitation and inequality will be its defining characteristics.


The Corporate Court’s War on Women
So far, not so good.
by Martha Burk


Will Egypt’s New Constitution Take the Country Backwards?
by Sharif Abdel Kouddous

*”This would essentially make it the final arbiter on legislation, giving Supreme Court style powers to an unelected, unaccountable religious body.”



Sounds like the Islamists have a pretty good notion of “Western values”, doesn’t it?


It’s Time to ‘Draw the Line’ on Attacks Against Reproductive Freedom
by Nancy Northup

*A woman’s work is never done

Protecting her rights from the patriarchy


Consumer Choice: As American as a Genetically-Altered Apple Pie
The creation of a new genetically modified apple highlights once again the need for clear labeling of this kind of food.
by Wenonah Hauter

*Of beauty

And the beast within


“Growing Up Locked Down”: New Report on Teens in Solitary
Youths suffer serious harm from weeks, months in “Lock-down.” Florida houses more minors in prison than any other state.

*Of course, this does “help” someone – namely, those who profit off of a steady stream of prisoners for their private prisons.

Rehabilitation doesn’t serve their bottom line, does it?

As well, releasing damaged psyches back into society facilitates a fear factor that “tough on crime” pols exploit to their, and their masters’, advantage.

As things fall further apart, that fear is being played on to repress those who challenge the power structure, in the name of “law and order”, and even “anti-terrorism”.

The goal being the perpetuation of the police state of mind.


CODEPINK Delegation in Pakistan Condemns Attack on 14-year-old Pakistani Girl; Offers Grant to her School


Greenpeace Activists Evade Security at Nuclear Swedish Power Plants


CNN Exposes ‘Villain’ Chavez’s Dastardly Plot to House the Poor

*Chavez provides for the needs of the people, and is accused of ulterior motives.

In this country, politicians cut the budgets for public housing and other essential needs, and are lauded as “fiscally responsible”.

The man isn’t Jesus on a stick, and I’d like to see that acknowledged when he’s praised for his actions, but he could be the reincarnation of St. Francis, and the corpress would paint him as a power-hungry charlatan, wouldn’t they?

As for “buffoonish and sinister” …

Anyone watch the last presidential debate?

And its “analysis”?


Institute for Public Accuracy
Meningitis Outbreak “Highlights Failure of FDA”


Wal-Mart Workers in 12 States Stage Historic Strikes, Protests Against Workplace Retaliation


As Bain Ships Jobs to China, Bainport Protesters Arrested for Blocking Illinois Factory’s Closure


Bain Capital & Big Tobacco: Romney’s Firm Profited From U.S.-Russia Cigarette Deals & Privatizations


As Millions Buy iPhone 5, Chinese Workers at Apple Plant Foxconn Protest Workplace Conditions

*This should serve as a reminder that outsourcing isn’t about a clash between workers, but about how workers the world over are exploited.

The ones “stealing our jobs” are the ones who profit from this race to the bottom, not those who endure conditions such as these.



Greek People Turn Out to Refuse Merkel’s ‘Tough Path’
– Common Dreams staff


Re-Occupied: Indigenous Groups Retake Brazil’s Belo Monte Dam
– Common Dreams staff


Doctor Falsely Prescribes Drugs to Give Students an “Edge”
Stimulants help “even the scales” for low-income students
– Common Dreams staff


Beware the ‘Grand Bargain’: Post-Election Deficit Deal Threatens Medicare and Social Security
The solution is Improved Medicare for All
by Kay Tillow

*A bargain that would put us in the basement

With the door locked and the water rising


US Delegation’s Message of Peace Received Warmly in Pakistan
Citizen diplomacy in Pakistan’s tribal areas: “You are welcome!”
by Medea Benjamin and Robert Naiman


Friends of the Earth
San Onofre: Feds’ ‘Roundtable Discussion’ a Meaningless Show That Shuts Out the Public
Nuclear watchdogs press for legal hearings on reactors’ future

*Going nuclear on the right to public oversight


Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington
CREW Files FEC Complaint Against Murray Energy Corporation and CEO Robert Murray

*Call it a “photo oppression”


NYT Reverses Time to Put Retaliation Before Attack in Gaza

*Talk about all the news that’s printed to fit

Time is meaningless

When you’ve got worldviews to warp


Factchecking Impossible, Pointless, Say Factcheckers

At some pretzel logic level, it makes perfect sense.

The corpress has precious little regard for truth in all other areas of its operation, so why should it be expected to deign to discern it in this one?

And that’s a fact that’s eminently easy to check, isn’t it?


What Are Enemies For?: Iran Sham Helps PBS Smear Chavez

*When you see horseshit like this from PBS, you just want to say

“Fuck Big Bird.”

It’s hard to defend public broadcasting when this is SOP.

The larger point is, of course, that the idea of public, noncommercial, gummint-supported media is worth defending.

Just not much of what passes for it, and what we pay for.

http://www.fair.org/blog/2012/10/09/what-are-enemies-for-iran-sham-helps-pbs-smear-chavez/ .

Institute for Public Accuracy
Ten Years After Iraq War Vote: Will Biden and Ryan be Asked About Yes Votes and False Statements on WMDs?

*Biden’s, Clinton’s and Gephardt’s warmongering is left out of the liberal history, isn’t it?

And Kucinich voted for the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan – as did every other Democrat in Congress but Barbara Lee – so there’s not a little hypocrisy in his condemnation of these (gender neutral) bastards’ votes, don’t you think?


All the Missing Horses: Federal Gov’t Selling Wild Horses to Western Dealer Linked to Slaughter


Uninsured Cancer Patient Saved by Little-Known Obamacare “Bridge” Program on Pre-Existing Conditions

*Let’s think about this for a moment.

For all the profound flaws in the ACA, this is something that seems to deliver on its promise.

Yet Dear Misleader isn’t touting it on the campaign trail, and the DNC isn’t slipping it into every other press release.

So why is that?

Anyone want to hazard a guess?


As Texas Pipeline Blockade Continues, Activists Challenge First U.S. Tar Sands Strip Mine in Utah

*Weisheit’s last remark hit the goddamn nail on the head, didn’t it?

And didn’t you love the CBC hack’s “gee whiz” reportage?  No refutation from someone like the segment’s guests, just some free PR for the tar pits.



Sioux Nation Races to Buy Back Sacred Lands
Tribe trying to raise $9 million to buy sacred site in South Dakota’s Black Hills
– Common Dreams staff

*I have to wonder if something beyond sacredness is at work here.

Poor Bear’s reasoning and the profound poverty and other depredations visited upon the Sioux provide ample justification for not pursuing this purchase, and I find it difficult to discern that some dogmatic definition of “the sacred” trumps them.

So who would benefit from the sale?

If it does come to pass, I hope its aftermath is closely covered.


Ban on Protest, Massive Police Force in Greece for Merkel Visit
Syriza leader Tsipras: “We will give her the welcome she deserves.”
– Common Dreams staff


The Maimed: On Eleven Years of War in Afghanistan
by Chris Hedges

*I can’t join Hedges in his absolute rejection of violence, but I take his words as a profound caution of the dangers inherent in its use.

If we fail to heed that caution, we risk becoming the monsters he so eloquently evokes here.

And the nature of violence is such that we may become those monsters to some degree regardless.

That is why it is always to be seen as the very last resort in the defense of ourselves and others, devoid of any justification other than that.

We dearly wish our moral quandaries to have neat solutions, but there is none to be had here.


Plucky Little Turkey Standing Up to Evil Syria? It’s Not as Simple as That
Turkey is funnelling weapons and armed men across the border into Syria
by Robert Fisk

*When it comes to history

The devil is in the dissembling on the details


What Price Basic Competence in Economics Reporting?
What chance do policy-makers and the public have if business journalists are so wildly wrong? We need some accountability
by Dean Baker

*There’s a difference between incompetence and complicity, and Baker’s comments about who benefits from the “confusion” makes a prima facie case for the latter, don’t you think?

And note how for him, the economic world is bounded by “Keynesians” and “conservatives”.

Anyone outside of that – that is, anyone who questions the basic tenets of a profit-driven system – would seem to be persona non grata in his view.

And given what we’re facing, that speaks to a certain “confusion” on his part, wouldn’t you say?


Veterans for Peace
“We don’t have to go to Afghanistan”
Veterans Deploy to Fort Lewis with Message of Hope for the Troops
Bold Action Coincides With 11th Anniversary of Afghanistan War


Oxfam International
New Survey Reveals Somalia’s Food Crisis Remains Critical and Likely to Worsen in Coming Months


Columbus Day, Indigenous Urge Celebration of Native Culture & Teaching of the Americas’ Genocide


Native American Leader Dennis Banks on the Overlooked Tragedy of Nation’s Indian Boarding Schools

*That’s a gut-wrenching tale from Banks.

There was no “New Deal” for Native Americans, was there?

Just the same oppression and brutality from church and state.


Dennis Banks: Palestinian Suffering Under U.S.-Backed Occupation Recalls Plight of Native Americans

*From the American West (and East and South and North) to the Middle East

“Manifest Destiny” means manifested decimation for the indigenous



Pakistan’s Imran Khan: If Elected, ‘I Would Shoot Down US Drones’
– Common Dreams staff

*I think something needs to be said here.

Time and again the point is made that these war crimes are “counterproductive”, I suppose to posit a self-interested reason in opposing them.

But what if that wasn’t the case?  What if they were “effective”, however that’s defined?

Would that in any way justify the taking of innocent lives?  Isn’t that declaring that American lives are more important than Pakistani or Afghan or Yemeni or Somalian lives?

By what moral authority do we make that determination?

We need to be careful in how we couch our condemnation of these horrors, and make certain that our humanity is always seated at the head of the table.


Ten Protesters Arrested at NY Drone Base
– Common Dreams staff

*Heavy props to these folks for their actions.

I have to take issue with Synder’s remarks, though.

It is very much “in our nature as Americans to be treating innocent people in this way.”

That’s how America became America, isn’t it?


On the Killing of 8 Afghan Women
by Rev. John Dear

*This is the Jesus I once tried to follow, before I could no longer rationally accept the myths of Christianity.

But the teachings of empathy and selflessness stand separate from the illusions of heaven and hell, and still inform my actions, however inadequately I incorporate them.

My only contention with them is the absolute adherence to non-violence.  I believe we have a right to defend ourselves and others through the disciplined and principled use of force, if necessary.

Of course, there is the contradiction of chasing the money changers from the temple.

I would hope that brandishing a rod would be as far as we would need to go, but history makes plain that the greedy likely won’t leave without a fight, and that wish will not be granted.

At which point we have some very hard choices to make.


On Afghan War 11th Anniversary, Vets Confront Mental Health Crisis, Soldier Suicides and Violence

*You have to ask why no female vets were guests, don’t you?  The epidemic of sexual violence they’ve endured is part and parcel of this situation, and for that not to be examined on this program is frankly negligent.

I realize DN! has done segments on the issue, but it needs to be integrated into the broader conversation about how war and military culture in general affect those who experience it.

And I have to admit that I didn’t think about this until Clumpner alluded to “a band of brothers and sisters”.  I take responsibility for my own initial failure to make the connection, but I think this also illustrates just how separately the two issues have been explored.



US Drought Batters Farmers as World Food Looms
Food prices skyrocket as individuals and livestock suffer
– Common Dreams staff


For Real Change, Conversations Not Debates
On the art of the “One-to-One” and the potency of small group organizing
by Sarah Byrnes and Thomas Atwood

*This is one of those stunningly obvious truths that seem to evade most everyone’s consciousness.

Or perhaps I should say that most everyone’s consciousness seems to evade it.

I’ve made numerous attempts to hook up with various groups, and that sense of having a one to one connection has been MIA pretty much each time, Occupy Madison being something of an exception, with other factors problematic in that instance.

For the most part, if there is any interest in your presence, and often there isn’t, it’s focused on grunt work or donating.

I’m copasetic with the former, and if I feel the money’s being used effectively, the latter, but I think I have more to contribute, and won’t waste my time with any group that doesn’t share that evaluation.

Anyone else have similar experiences?

There’s all this kvetching about the lack of participation, yet little attempt to do what’s necessary to change that, which comes down to simple humanity.


Extreme Energy Means an Extreme Planet
The new “Golden Age of Oil” that wasn’t as forecasts of abundance collide with planetary realities
by Michael T. Klare


Drones and Revenge: How a Pashtun Man Pursues Justice
by Medea Benjamin

*It seems to me that Khan has a morally logical sense of when violence is justified, and against whom.

And advocates of dogmatic non-violence like Benjamin might do well to reconsider their views in light of his example.


Sanctions Against Iran Are Form of War, Not Alternative to It
by Murtaza Hussain

*The terrorists in tailored suits sniff

“Let them eat yellowcake”


Oxfam International
Land Sold Off in Last Decade Could Grow Enough Food to Feed a Billion People
World Bank must freeze investments to protect poor people from land grabs

*I’m afraid the seeds of Oxfam’s reformist approach of persuading the World Bank to “set an example” won’t bear fruit in the blighted fields of international finance


Seed Freedom: A Call To End Corporate Control
Vandana Shiva’s group, Navdanya, issues call to action in support of food security, seed sovereignty in new report
– Common Dreams staff


Food Justice Victory: Chipotle Signs Agreement With Coalition of Immokalee Workers
Contract improves working conditions, pay of tomato workers
– Common Dreams staff

*Of course I’m glad about the victory, but does anyone else feel a bit queasy witnessing these “signing ceremonies”, where it seems to be de rigueur to engage in blandishments towards the bastards who only days earlier were screwing you royal?

I suppose it’s considered tactically smart to appear magnanimous toward your adversaries, but it just gets on my sodding wick.


Jordan’s King Abdullah Dissolves Parliament
Action taken on eve of Muslim Brotherhood rally
– Common Dreams staff


Walmart workers on strike
Employees protesting working conditions and retaliation are flexing their organizing muscle. But the first-of-its-kind strike carries risks
by Josh Eidelson


Institute for Public Accuracy
Debate: Independent Analysis

*I thought you had to disagree in order to have a debate


Expanding the Debate Exclusive: Third Party Candidates Break the Sound Barrier As Obama-Romney Spar

*Both Stein and Anderson made some righteous points, but neither addressed the fundamental cause of injustice within the economic system – the pursuit of profit.

That is what drives the greed they both denounce, yet they avoided confronting it.

And inextricably linked to that, as that greed has led us to the precipice of oblivion, is the near absence of any talk of climate change by either of them.  I don’t believe Anderson even mentioned it, and Stein – the *Green* Party candidate, gave it only cursory attention.

If this is posited as the alternative to the corporate domination of the major parties, we’re in deep doo doo, don’t you think?



Time: Obama’s Lies Are Worse Because They’re More Accurate

*The pot calls the kettle black

And then blames it all on the skillet


Bhutan Pledges to be First 100% Organic Nation
The small, Himalayan kingdom plans to be chemical free within decade
– Common Dreams staff


Anti-Drone Activists Gain Momentum in Pakistan ahead of March
Calls to end drone strikes delivered to US embassy in Pakistan
– Common Dreams staff


Ignoring America’s Poor
With 46 million people living in poverty, why are the presidential candidates so quiet on issues affecting the poor?
by Al-Jazeera

*It’s fairly obvious why neither major party is making a play for the votes of the poor.

Nothing needs to be said regarding the Republicans.

And the Democrats would have to give them some reason to vote for them.

As Dear Misleader’s callous comment makes plain, that ain’t happening.

To do so would be to vitiate the mantra of “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps”, which both parties chant with only slight variation in vigor.

Of course, when you have no boots …


Education Profiteering: Wall Street’s Next Big Thing?
by Jeff Faux

*Excellent piece that is required reading for anyone who gives a rodent’s rear about the jackals circling the exhausted prey that is our education system.

Let’s hope that the CTU struggle is a sign of its regaining some strength to escape their clutches.


Sierra Club
New Study Supports Water Contamination Due to Fracking
U.S. Geological Survey Verifies EPA Findings in Pavillion, WY

*Looks like Sierra’s love affair – perhaps “prostitution” is more apt – with the natural gas industry is kaput.

But I guess they kept the $25M US they took from them.

Anyone know the details on the split?


As Obama, Romney Hold First Debate, Behind the Secret GOP-Dem Effort to Shut Out Third Parties


Months After Aurora Massacre, University of Colorado Sparks Fear, Outrage by Allowing Concealed Guns


Seeking Living Wage and Humane Conditions, Immokalee Workers Bring Fair Food Struggle to Chipotle



‘Intimidation, Threats, and Lawyers’: The Great American Gas Fracking ‘Land Grab’
– Common Dreams staff

*The infuriating thing about these “special investigative reports” is that, while they do often contain vital intel, that information is rarely integrated into the routine reporting on the issues covered.

The result is that the impact they could have is severely muted.

And that, of course, is not by accident.

The news that’s not printed to fit usually has a very short shelf life.


White House Mulls ‘Unilateral Strikes’ in Africa
White House said to be reassessing al-Qaeda’s franchise in North Africa
– Common Dreams staff

*The Sherwin-Williams strategy

And that ain’t red paint covering the world


Winning Message? ‘If You Love Waterboarding, Vote For Romney’
New polling shows that more Americans support torture in 2012 than they did under Bush
– Common Dreams staff

*I do think mass media plays a significant role in bringing out our worst instincts, as described by Alfred McCoy:


(Although I don’t see the logic behind lumping in with “24” what I assume is a depiction of consensual sadomasochism in “Casino Royale”.)

And as he points out, while the US supposedly has ended the use of torture, it still outsources it.

It really doesn’t matter to the victim whether or not he’s being waterboarded by a subcontractor, does it?

Of course, Bradley Manning wasn’t in Somalia, was he?

Lastly, whatever Americans think about “enhanced interrogation”, it has little to do with how they’ll vote in five weeks.  Aside from platitudes about “keeping America safe”, and arguing over who’s the “better friend” of Israel, foreign policy issues are almost wholly MIA in both campaigns, because of the economic car wreck most folks are frantically dialing 911 about.


The True Reason US Fears Iranian Nukes: They Can Deter US Attacks
GOP Senator Lindsey Graham echoes a long line of US policymakers: Iran must not be allowed to deter US aggression
by Glenn Greenwald

*There is truth in what Greenwald says, but it’s applicable to North Korea, not Iran.

If Iran is not pursuing a nuclear weapons capability, then the reason for the sanctions, the cyber sabotage, the assassinations and the saber rattling isn’t to prevent them from realizing it, but to bring down the regime, or at the least severely weaken it.

It amounts to the same thing — the US and the West don’t want a viable adversary in the region.

But you can’t say Iran isn’t doing something, and then present a scenario that supposes that they are.

Am I missing something here?


Riot Police Arrest Peaceful Protesters at Rally for Striking Walmart Workers
by Allison Kilkenny

*I hope Ashby’s risk assessment is right on.


Warehouse Workers for Justice (WWJ)
Walmart Warehouse Workers Deserve Fairness, Demand Change

*Taking on the low life leader


Documents Obtained by ACLU Shed Light on Other Telecom Surveillance Techniques
by Allie Bohm

*”We’re sorry … those rights have been disconnected or are no longer in service.”

As for the assurance that “The vast majority of law enforcement agents are good public servants who want to do the right thing and keep us safe … “

I’d be curious to know just what inspires such confidence, wouldn’t you?


The Yes Men
Shell Blocks Employee Access to Activist Website 71,010 employees blocked from tweeting Oprah about Supreme Court murder case

*” … would badly undermine the United States’ reputation as a place that cares about human rights.”

Which begs the question of just how there’s any reputation left to undermine, doesn’t it?

In any rational world, this would be a moot point.

Propaganda’s aim is to insure that such a world never comes into being.


Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER)
Aerial Spraying Leaves Pesticide Footprint in Local Waters
No Buffer Zone or Other Effort to Minimize Pesticide Discharge into Water Bodies


Keystone XL Pipeline and the Presidential Election


How to Tell When ‘Humans’ Die in a U.S. War

*There is another way in which the deaths of US troops and Afghanis (and Pakistanis and Yemenis and all the other “collateral damage” engendered by empire) are alike, aside from the humanity extinguished.

They would never occur if our government was committed to the actual defense of the country

And not the exploitation of so many others.


Institute for Public Accuracy
The Christian Right, the Election and “40 Days to Save America”: “This Nation Belongs to Jesus!”


I wonder if a spiritual entity has standing to sue for defamation of character.


As U.S. Death Toll in Afghanistan Passes 2,000 Mark, Phyllis Bennis on America’s Longest War


Va. Tech Shooting Survivor Recounts 2007 Massacre and Urges Obama, Romney to Address Gun Violence


“Guns Are an Idea Whose Time Has Passed”: Poet, Scholar Nikki Giovanni on the Va. Tech Massacre

*Giovanni doesn’t mince words, does she?

I’ll limit myself to a few points here.

I thought her comments about “mental breakdown” were foolish and callous, although I imagine she’s making them in the context of the horrors committed by Cho and others.  And her handling of his presence in class, and I’m not questioning her desire to have him leave, could have been dealt with in a good deal more understanding and empathetic manner.

I’m not trying to be touchy feely here.  Seung-Hui Cho was a deeply disturbed person, and she should have factored that possibility into how she dealt with him.  That she thought of him immediately as the shooter indicates she understood something was very wrong, don’t you think?

But her remarks about hunting are dead on.  A sport?  Can’t whatever hunters get out of it be accomplished without firing a bullet into the body of a living creature?

Hell, put on your camo, trudge out into the woods, stalk your prey, aim, pull the trigger …

Just don’t load the goddamn gun.

And her suggestion for class safety is infinitely reasonable.

And on hot days, I’d imagine rather welcome.

Not to make light of this.  It’s insane that at the very least, anyone wishing to own a gun should have to have a demonstrably valid rationale based on safety, and undergo rigorous training, as well as a thorough background check.

And no, the Second Amendment doesn’t guarantee diddley.

What militia do you belong to?



From Start to Finish: Why We Won and How We Are Losing
A review essay on human origins and contemporary crises
by Robert Jensen

*We are the only species willfully incapable of reason.

The question is

Do we have the will to make that maladjustment moot?


Barry Commoner, Pioneering Environmental Scientist and Activist, Dies at 95
by Peter Dreier


Anti-Drone Protesters Gather for Weekend March into Waziristan
Former US Army Colonel Ann Wright leads US delegation
– Common Dreams staff


Organic Farming: Resilience in the Time of Drought
As climate change brings extreme weather, organic farmers say their methods are the answer
– Common Dreams staff


Tar Sands Company Intensifies Fight Against ‘Blockaders’
As Tar Sands Blockade activists continue 8th day of direct action, TransCanada threatens protesters’ safety
– Common Dreams staff


Deepwater Horizon Talks Stall as Groups Haggle over Diminishing Penalties
– Common Dreams staff

*A slap on the wrist

When what’s needed is a kick in the cojones


Success in Quebec Speaks to Power of Mass Movements
by Yves Engler


$34.4 Million Can’t Seem To Buy Prop 37 Opponents Their Own Facts
by Zack Kaldveer

*Planting a kernel of truth

In a field of devious dreams


Institute for Public Accuracy
Three Sponsors Drop Presidential Debate Commission; Reform Groups Call for Openness

*Closed circuit television


FAIR Extra!
Economy Is the Issue That Isn’t Misidentifying problems, marginalizing solutions
by Neil deMause

*A dangerous deficit

Of responsible reporting


Actual Suppression vs. Imaginary Fraud
Media won’t ID voter ID myths
by Peter Hart

*Now, compare this to the utter lack of any journalistic investigation of very real instances of voter fraud perpetrated by election officials to fix races for their parties’ candidates.

Hanging chads, anyone?

And while Democrats have their own history of vote rigging, today’s perfidy is almost wholly a Republican affair.

You could call these ID and associated laws, such as hamstringing voter registration efforts, a form of “preventive maintenance”.

No need to lose ballots or manipulate machines when you can keep the votes from being cast in the first place, is there?


When Nonsense Is Your Reality, Reality Naturally Seems to Have a Slant

*Ombud:  a person who acts as a trusted intermediary between either the state (or elements of it) or an organization, and some internal or external constituency, while representing not only but mostly the broad scope of constituent interests.

Talk about a disconnect from reality.

Oy …


In Shell Case, Will Supreme Court’s View of Corporate Personhood Mean Liability for Crimes Abroad?

*Protecting corporate rights

Absolving corporate wrongs?


Onerous Requirements Under Virginia’s TRAP Law Could Force Closure of State’s Abortion Clinics

*If you can’t build it

They can’t come


Virginia Residents Fight Back Against Nuclear Industry Effort to Lift Ban on Uranium Mining

*You have to wonder what’s going on in Moore’s head

Or maybe you just have to know what’s going in his wallet



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