Thousands of our kids, if they come home at all, are returning from Iraq and Afghanistan physically wounded and carrying the enormous weight of the emotional baggage picked up during their experience of war. This is nothing new, we brought back the same cargo from Vietnam, Korea and WW2. All wars provide their participants with a dismal tide of dark memories, the material of a lifetime of tortured nightmares. Continue reading
Sharron Angle, the Tea Bagger running against Harry Reid for the Senate in Nevada says that we should use Augusto Pinochet’s model of privatization as a guide for reforming our social security system.
Yes, Pinochet, the infamous fascist dictator and Nixon/Kissinger ally who engineered the subjugation of Chilean democracy in the 1970s. Continue reading
This shocking news came from Lieutenant General Babaker Zerbari and therein lies the crux of the problem. Zerbari is a Lieutenant General and Iraq’s most senior military officer.
We send Lieutenant Generals out for coffee and donuts in the morning. We have Bird Colonels sharpening pencils and Major Generals escorting defense lobbyists to strip clubs. Continue reading
Since the Deepwater Horizon exploded and sank on April 20 killing 11 workers the NOAA estimates that 206 million gallons of “light sweet crude” spewed from BP’s Macondo well field, fouling the waters of the Gulf, shutting down much of the commerce of the surrounding region and creating a giant toxic bouillabaisse in which now swim whatever critters managed to survive poisoning, suffocation, or being roasted alive. Continue reading
Originally posted at my site Bob Higgins “We need to be realistic about operating in a mile of water” Tony Hayward, the cherubic little weasel who serves as the front man for British Petroleum, BP, Beyond Pathetic or whatever they are calling their ‘brand’ this week, made the statement above, on camera to reporters while standing on an oil fouled Louisiana beach a couple of weeks ago. Earlier that day I had a fairly heated argument with an elderly acquaintance who recently became enraptured by the ‘Teabaggers.’ This giddy political infatuation has had the gruesome effect of making him more of a pain in the ass than he was previously. At one point in the ‘discussion’ he asked me why … Continue reading
There is an ongoing debate over the closing of America’s most notorious detainment/torture center at Guantanamo and the legality and efficacy of using torture to extract “information” from detainees in that and other facilities. In a piece in this morning’s Washington Post titled Torture? Prosecute Us, Too Richard Cohen leads with this: “The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.” So goes an aphorism that needs to be applied to the current debate over whether those who authorized and used torture should be prosecuted. In the very different country called Sept. 11, 2001, the answer would be a resounding no. Contrary to what has become the accepted noise, “the world” did not “change” on 9/11. Our laws, … Continue reading
Crandall Canyon graphic, click on the Image for full size. “Our relationship with Mr. Murray has been stormy thus far. That is also the pattern of his relationship with MSHA at his eastern mines. Just wanted to give you a heads up on that. He may not be a willing participant if he senses that anything you do could impact his ability to produce coal.” from an e-mail written by MSHA district nine manager Allyn Davis No story in recent years has illustrated, at least in my mind, the true peril of the unholy marriage of crony capitalists and wealthy, politically connected corporatists to venal government officials, as does the compound tale of the mine collapse and failed rescue attempt … Continue reading
“It is the quality of patriotism to be jealous and watchful, to observe all secret machinations, and to see publick dangers at a distance. The true lover of his country is ready to communicate his fears, and to sound the alarm, whenever he perceives the approach of mischief. But he sounds no alarm, when there is no enemy; he never terrifies his countrymen till he is terrified himself. The patriotism, therefore, may be justly doubted of him, who professes to be disturbed by incredibilities…” Samuel Johnson The stage is covered with American flags, draped and propped and perched everywhere, to the left, to the right and behind the speaker’s dais, which itself is covered with flag bunting and a covey … Continue reading