Friday, July 30, 2010

Blood on Whose Hands?

The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, sitting alongside Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, had the gall today to say that Mr. Assange of Wikileaks might have the blood on his hands of a soldier or citizen in Afghanistan because he released secret documents exposing the absurdity of our making war in that tribal, corrupt, failed imitation of a civilized nation state.

If any have blood on their hands it's the Neocons, the cheerleaders of the Military/Industrial Complex, who love and promote war somewhere, all the time, for the $Billions made in making war.

(Who are the Neocons? That's a good and justified question. Here are the names of some of those I would assign to that category. It's important to know and understand that I can only make these judgments based on what people have had the guts and/or the gall to state publicly. I am certain that there are many more who don't want to be identified and whose motives and agendas are innimical to the values and hopes of decent people all over the world).

In my view SecDef Gates gets an unmerited pass by many Americans who view him as a reasonable man, in contrast to the cynical, shoot from the hip, former SecDef Rumsfeld of the Cheney/Bush cabal. I agree that he makes a good impression, but I also believe that he drinks the same Koolaid as those in Congress and the Administration who seem trapped into playing their role in the War Games tragedy staged by those Neocon criminals, whose loyalty and agenda is to money and power, at the sacrifice of the people of the United States. Gates should be judged, not by his words, but by his actions.

When it comes to judging people by their actions, not their words, that goes for Obama as well. Gates and Mullen serve at his pleasure. Or do they? If not his, whose?

Who really has the blood of America's youth and future on their hands? I think I know. Do you?
It's important that you do.


The Old "Picture's Worth A Thousand Words" Thing

It's true. All you need to know about making war in Afghanistan you can learn by just looking at this cartoon pictorial.

Not all cartoons are meant to be funny.


Making Sense

Paul Krugman makes sense to me with this down to earth analysis of Obama's frequent reluctance to deal with the reality that the GOPhers are not his friends and his all too frequent snubbing of those who are.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Value of

Tom Engelhardt, the creator of the blog, continues to publish the very best of essays on the threat of American Imperialism.

Here's the latest, this one by Andrew J. Bacevich, professor of history and international relations at Boston University. Tom observes that it's about "Giving up on victory, but not war".

The final paragraph is especially important in its shining a bright light on the shadows of massive corruption in American politics, including our current politicians, of all stripes, and at all levels, from the highest to the lowest.

In my opinion, the Pentagon has become the fourth branch of government, after the Executive, Congress and the Supreme Court. It's the military part of the military/industrial complex which President Eisenhower warned us about in the late 1950's.

It's become almost trite, even naive, to say, "Follow the money", as Deep Throat observed, yet it's still the clue to the Elephant in the Room nobody wants to acknowledge; the rampant corruption in our politics. When we complain about Hamid Karzai's corrupt government it's the pot calling the kettle black. It might be compared to the Mafia, the Cosa Nostra, fighting among its own families, the Americans versus the Sicilians.

The depressing thing is that the Neocons' unending war, somewhere, all the time, has become the modern American way of life; volunteer soldiers and mercenaries trying out the toys dreamed up and manufactured by the Industrial part of the Military/Industrial Complex, and financed by the other half of that complex, the Pentagon's so-called Defense Department; the label which redefines "euphemism".

One can only hope that investigative journalism like what Dana Priest and William Arkin of the Washington Post gave us last week, will arouse the ire of the American public enough to worry bought and paid for politicians that they could lose their jobs if the public were to get on a roll.

That's not likely unless we institute a military draft like we had during the Vietnam War. Then the entire populace became worked up by the reality that families were being torn up by the dead and the disabled against their will.

Today, the Neocons, the Cosa Nostra of our Military/Industrial Complex, would use their vast lobbying money to buy off politicians who might be inclined to vote for a draft, because they don't want to wake that sleeping dog which is the American voter.

There ought to be a sign over the entrance to the Capitol Building in D.C., like that over the entrance to Hell. "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here."

Still, hope springs eternal.

Surviving Member of a Homo
Sapien species long assumed
to be extinct.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Where Are The Adults? Here Are Three

There are at least three adults to call a spade a spade in their exposure of Neocon fantasies, one of which is that we can and should "change the world".

William Pfaff, Robert Sheer and Eugene Washington can usually be counted on to speak the truth, loud and clear, when other pundits want to look away, plug their ears and try to pretend that those whose favor they curry are making sense and doing the right thing.

Here is a link to where you will find the current essays of these truth seeking opinion journalists.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Israeli Coverup

Here's a fine piece by Roger Cohen in a Times column today. It's heartening to read a Jew talking straight about Israeli coverups of anything potentially damaging to its reputation.


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Shedding Light on Sherrod

Bob Herbert here writes what needed to be said about what the White House didn't do for Shirley Sherrod, and what the bigots did to her. It speaks for itself.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Truth With Lies

Here's the best essay I've read about the idiocy of our warring in Afghanistan.

When you read and/or hear the spin coming out of DC and other world capitals about how it's going there and how it's a crucial place for us to be, remind yourself that it's all lies.

It's nothing short of Bullshit.

Pakistan loves it, OBL loves it, China loves it, Iran loves it, Russia loves it, Saudi Arabia loves
it(that's news to me). In other words all those who would like to see the U.S. humbled love it. It saps us of money, prestige, and blood. No one likes a bully and the U.S. is perceived to be an arrogant bully all around the world.

Add to that noxious mix the reality that our own Neocon/Pentagon/Military/Industrial Complex loves it for the $Billions they rake off by waging war, somewhere, all the time, at the expense of the American Taxpayer whom they don't want to wake up to understand what is really happening to them.

With friends like these ------.

This has almost nothing to do with Dems or GOPhers. It's now clear that whoever sits in the White House in these times is in on the fix.


Don't Tell Anyone.

In the recent expose' by Dana Priest and William Arkin of WaPo we learn that 854.000 employees of the vast American intelligence network have Top Secret clearances.

Are you serious? How likely is it that 854,000 people can keep a secret?

What a world. Where are the adults?


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Oops. Sorry About Botching Our Latest Attempt To Deceive

Seems BP is just pissed that they got caught in another subterfuge.


Mental Health Break

Check out Tom Toles, the WaPo cartoonist par excellence, here. The funniest part is his dream tale following the cartoon. He describes all the weird. telltale, revealing aspect of a true dream.


Mining Afghanistan's Treasure

Here's a sensible, if polyannish wish, for how to deal with the recently reported mineral treasures in Afghanistan.

A year or so ago, Derrick V. Jackson of the Boston Globe said we were trying to make Iraq safe for Exxon. That didn't work out so well.

I suspect that it won't work out so well in Afghanistan for Big Mining either.
Tribal customs and corruption as a way of life are sure to dash any such hopes

I am beginning to wonder though if those mineral treasures might be the real reason we're in Afghanistan. Michael Klare, professor at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA, wrote an excellent and insightful book a few years ago called, Resource Wars. It might be a good time to take a new and closer look at his premise.


Thinly Disguised Neocon Subterfuge

Here's David Brooks' thinly disguised attempt to divert attention away from the recently published excellent investigative journalism of Dana Priest and William Arkin of the Washington Post.

His last sentence is cheap soap opera drama. The French Revolution was not about bureaucracy so much as it was about the obscene hording of wealth and the greed of those in power.

Come to think of it, perhaps his last sentence is appropriate.


Monday, July 19, 2010

Follow The Money and Cui Bono

Here are two terms used by Kevin Drum, of Mother Jones, who has dipped his toes into the dangerous waters of how the very wealthy control what happens in our society. Read his careful wording here. I would add, for the benefit of the voters, Caveat Emptor.

This is encouraging. He's a pundit with a fairly wide following. Look for some others to follow if and when they get up their nerve.


Looting The Candy Store

Update Below.

When will the adults take back the candy store?

Read this and weep. $7.5 Billion aid to Pakistan for drinking water and infrastructure? Hey, how about us? And for non-military purposes? Oh, please. Cut the bullshit. It's nothing more than a bribe.

Good Grief and oy vey.


Adding insult to injury is the message in this piece which tells me that not only are we providing aid to a foreign country which we need very badly ourselves, but apparently it's "needed" by Pakistan because their own leaders are the wealthy elites who, the article says, are adept at shielding themselves from paying taxes.

Sound familiar? The GOPhers say we cannot help out the needy in this country because it increases the deficit, but we must reinstate the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy, saying that doesn't increase the deficit.

Talk about being adept!



Saturday, July 17, 2010

Those Dim and Small

Last year Garrison Keillor called George W. Bush, "That dim, small man".

Here's a report of those dim, small people, GOPhers, Tea Partiers, Conservatives, whatever, picking on Obama for taking a weekend off in Maine, the state that claims it's how life should be. I lived for four glorious years in Midcoast Maine. I'm not pissed at Obama, just jealous.



Friday, July 16, 2010

Pay Attention To Roger Cohen

I pay close attention to what Roger Cohen writes, assuming it's also what he really thinks. His column in the Times today calls out the Obama team on it's poor use of really good talent and it's over use of the mediocre.

Who knows how bad off we would have been by this time if McCain had won? Really bad off I suspect.

But I can't help but feel growing disillusionment with the Obama administration. There's just too much continuance of all the things Bush supported, especially in the foreign affairs portfolio. Yes, he got health care through, and yes he got financial reform through, and even though they are watered down to please GOPhers they can be improved over time.

On the economy he is up against the the politically motivated obstructionist GOPhers on every front, from unemployment insurance extension to the spending needed to avoid backsliding into more recession like what happened in the late 1930's. That's when Congress lost its nerve and cut off stimulus too soon.

Railing about the deficit is the bullshit the GOPhers are using to convince the gullible voters that the Dems should be thrown out this year as they, the GOPhers, were two years ago. It's the height of hypocrisy to claim that continuing the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy doesn't increase the deficit. That's a ridiculous and absurd bald-faced lie.

But it's the wars for me. The loss of precious lives and billions of dollars is an obscenely high cost to pay for pretending that America's security and foreign interests are sufficiently in danger to justify unending war, somewhere, all the time.

Paul Krugman, today, calls tax cuts for the wealthy Voodoo economics. That term should also be applied to waging unnecessary war. It's Voodoo foreign policy. Both black magic policies are designed to line the pockets of the very wealthy even more, especially the pockets of those who accumulate vast wealth through their investment in arms and all manner of war materiel.

Obama is confirming the GOPhers' appraisal of him as weak, and unable to stand up to their selfish greed.

He says he'd rather be a good one term president than a poor two term one. But he's acting like he, like most politicians, is more worried about keeping his job than governing based on his principles and values. I hope that's not giving the devil more than he's due.

I guess whether one is disillusioned with Obama or not depends on the major reason(s) one voted for him. For me the disappointment is about his appearing to have been rolled by the Pentagon, and his ignoring the threat of the Neocon/Pentagon/Military/Industrial Complex Ike warned us about in the late 1950's. And Ike, as Supreme Commander in WW II and then as Commander in Chief, clearly would have known and understood that threat.


Thursday, July 15, 2010

It's About Time

Finally, someone, in this case Senator John Kerry of Mass., has made public secret discussions relating to the unnecessary war in Vietnam, showing the clear parallels between that war and the ones in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Here is an editorial in today's Boston Globe on the subject. Figures don't lie, but liars do figure. As always, war is about making huge profits on the backs of the American people and the lives of our young men and women.

Why were these meetings held in secret? If you have to ask you'll never understand.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

American Imperialism; Alive and Well

The politicians, from top to bottom, deny it, but the facts on the ground, as they are wont to observe, prove that the U.S. has been on an imperial march since the end of WW II. Historians might even conclude that we've been embarking on modern day Crusades. It doesn't take a spin doctor long to identify Infidels wherever they want to.

More likely they will conclude that we have been just another example of a country which might have been what its founders imagined, but which succumbed to the greed of its military/industrial establishment's penchant for waging unending war, somewhere, all the time.

Here's a great essay on the subject. Read it and weep.


War Without End, Amen

Here's the best expose' and analysis I've read of the war without end conspiracy, oops, hidden agenda of the Neocons' promotion of unending war.

Brigadier FB Ali is no kook. He is a retired Pakistani military officer who has made several trenchant contributions to Col.(Ret.) Patrick Lang's blog, Sic Semper Tyrannis. He speaks the truth.

Unfortunately his hope for a rising up and public outcry like we experienced over Vietnam will not occur this time around, at least anytime soon, because we have no draft to take our kids unwillingly off to war. Neocons would block a draft with their ownership of Congress, because they don't want to wake the sleeping dog which is the American public.

The money's the thing wherein they've killed the conscience of the king.

For truly predictive literature on this subject I recommend Rudyard Kipling's poem "Recessional" and Taylor Caldwell's 1970's novel, "Captains and the Kings".


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Old Time Religion

Update below.

Here's a piece that prompts me to sing, virtually, as follows.

Take back your old time religion, your old time religion, take back your old time religion; it's just too sick for me.

Big government is bad, salvation is good. We have big government and we need salvation, so big government threatens salvation. Sadly there are enough idiots out there who will swallow this bullshit, and shout AMEN.

Then there's this. Holy shit!


Is There No End To The Idiocy?

Update below.

Here's a story about how the Taliban are laughing all the way to their AK47 supply store.

How much more idiocy will it take to get the message that this is not a war we should have any part of?

Perhaps it doesn't have to be a military draft, sending our kids to war unwillingly, to get the ire of the public. Perhaps the public will revolt when it gets around that its tax dollars are being used to pay extortion to the Taliban, so that we can wage war against them. Recall the story of extortion and bribes needed to get our supply trucks into Afghanistan from Pakistan.

You can't make this stuff up.

Update: Now this. You can't tell the players, even with a program. Sick!


Sunday, July 11, 2010

"God Has A Plan." Sharon Angle

Sharon Angle, running as a Republican for the Nevada Senate seat of the incumbent Democrat, Harry Reid, says, "I am a Christian--------".

Read the rest of that quote and the context in which it was spoken here.

What does it mean to be a Christian? I was baptized a Christian. If to be a Christian I am supposed to have the same beliefs as Sharon Angle, which she seems to imply by prefacing her position on abortion by saying she's a Christian, I'd have to resign from that club.

Like Woody Allen said, "I would never join a club that would have me as a member".

Let's hear it for the separation of church and state.


Saturday, July 10, 2010

Funny or Obscene?

Here's Gail Collins' wit dealing with the obscenity of the power of money in politics.

Who knew that Richard Blumenthal's wife's family owns the Empire State Building?

Who cares?

Perhaps we should when he portrays himself as a hard working guy for the people, making a measly $100k+ salary as his state's attorney general.



Thursday, July 8, 2010

America's War Now

Here's a post from the fine blog, Minstrel Boy, and following it is a comment I left on that post.
Also after the P.S. is a link to another on the topic from the fine blog

Apparently the Brits don't have the Neocon/Pentagonlike/military/industrial complex we
have which promotes war somewhere all the time because of the huge quantities of money made in arms and all manner of war materiel.

The British learned in the late 18th century that fighting terrorists(or patriots if you choose) is a losing battle. There are so many ironies in history. Why haven't we learned our own lesson? It's because "we" have the Neocon war mongering criminals. They did learn that lesson, and the lesson is that fighting against terrorists is a losing battle which means that there is no end to war. Just what they want.

It's best not to call this a conspiracy because that gets one branded a nut. But call it the hidden agenda, hidden from the gullible and "could- care- less" citizenry which is not about to get worked up over this when there is no draft to drag their kids off to war unwillingly.The Neocons don't want a draft for that very reason. Without a draft it's not likely that politicians will have to face angry citizens over Afghanistan as they did over Vietnam.

In the meantime we continue to borrow from the Chinese, to pay for Middle East oil and extortion to the Taliban and Pakistanis to keep the supply trucks rolling.

Sorry for the rant but I get really pissed when I hear and read stories about how Petraeus is going to be Obama's General Grant, after firing his Gen McClellan, as if military strategy and tactics were what it's all about.As always, what it's all about is MONEY!

Leanderthal; surviving member of a homo sapien species long thought to be extinct.


Here's a post by Retired Lt. Col. William Astore on this very topic. Great minds think alike? I wish.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

If I Were King

If I were king I'd require every one of my subjects to read the essay by Chris Hedges which you will find here.

Oh, and this one too. Roger Cohen might be the most interestingly articulate writer of our times.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Who Knew?

Here's a fascinating, to me at least, bit of history I knew nothing about.

The reason it appears in the New York Times as an op-ed column today is obvious.

Its best value might be in shedding light on the colonial ancestors of those who stood up to and rejected the Crown years later.


Thursday, July 1, 2010

Sadly He Speaks The Truth

Col.(Ret) Patrick Lang here, sadly, speaks the truth about Afghanistan. Time to rid ourselves of denial, the belief that we'll bring the troops home, beginning a year from now. Not gonna happen.

Neocons won't let it happen. There's too much money at stake.

It'll take an uprising like we saw in the '70's over Vietnam to get us out of that black hole, and that won't happen without a draft. Good luck with that.