Posted by: quiscus | October 29, 2008

October 29, 2008

1.  Willie Nelson and Jesse Venture discussing the 9/11 coverup:

“The truth about JFK still hasn’t come out,” Willie reminded. “I don’t know what happened, but we know a lot of investigations were stifled. But, like 9/11… we’ll never know for sure.”
Gov. Ventura agreed, “The simple way they get to that is by removal of all evidence.”

Ventura cited the fact that LBJ had Kennedy’s limo sent for clean-up and restoration before the homicide evidence could be taken or examined. “That limo shouldn’t have been touched until investigators went through it with a fine-toothed comb.”

“That’s what causes, for me, a light to go on,” Gov. Ventura said. “Because when they start doing a crime investigation the exact opposite of the way it’s supposed to be done, that tells you that there’s ulterior forces involved here.”

Similarly, Ventura says, “with 9/11, the priority is with removal of everything– not investigating it.” Evidence should have been set aside for thorough investigation, he said.

Willie said investigating “was what we all assumed they were doing.” Instead, Gov. Ventura points out, steel from the towers was destroyed, sold to China and even used to build a memorial ship.

Now, Ventura asserts, with all the relevant evidence destroyed, “We are all valid investigators.” Thus, questions should always be allowed and encouraged. For many investigators, the cover-up itself often points to the real crime.

So why do the authorities refuse to answer questions about 9/11? Perhaps the cover-up benefits them more than the truth.

Anytime you cover-up evidence or take evidence away, you have an agenda there. You’re trying to stop people from knowing what happened. And I really do believe that’s what happened.”

Ventura agreed that this would prevent us from ever knowing officially what really happened. If the official story were actually true, Ventura suggested, the government would easily be able to ‘debunk’ conspiracy theories– because the truth would brush aside everything that had no merit.

Instead, the government maintains its silence, and conspiracy theories continue to flourish.”

2.  A torturer is running for office in Florida as a Republican.  To say this is disgusting is a vast understatement:

“So what will be left of the Republican Party after next week’s US election? The answer lies in the sands of Florida, where the sunshine-state Republicans have nominated an unrepentant torturer as their candidate for Congress. They view his readiness to torture an innocent Iraqi not as a source of shame, but as his prime qualification for office. This is American conservatism in the dying days of Bush – and it points out the direction that Sarah Palin would like to take it in 2012.

Yehiya protested: I am innocent! What are you talking about? So West took him outside, had him pinned down, and began to shoot. First he fired into the air. Then he ordered his men to ram Yehiya’s head into a barrel used for cleaning weapons – and fired right next to his head. Then he began to count down from five. Finally Yehiya began to scream out names – any name he could think of, just to make it stop.

The men he named were seized and roughed up in turn. No evidence was found of any plot, and after another 45 days of terror, Yehiya was released.

At a pre-trial hearing, West was fined $5,000, and now concedes grudgingly: “It’s possible I was wrong about Mr Hamoodi.” But he says he would do it again, and again, and again.
West has even taken to joking about it, gaining applause for telling Republican audiences: “It wasn’t torture. Seeing Rosie O’Donnell naked would be torture.” But the 1994 Convention Against Torture, to which the US is a signatory, is explicit: “Threat of imminent death” is the third form of torture it outlaws. There are reams of studies showing it can traumatise a person for life.

Yet the Republican Party has rallied to the defence of this torturer, and of torture in general.

West’s “toughness” is fawned over; one leading conservative magazine has even named him its Man of the Year. And Sarah Palin, the Party’s darling, mocks Barack Obama’s opposition to torture.

Once you start to torture it doesn’t just stay in the neat mind-experiments favoured by philosophers. After the Israeli supreme court approved torture in very limited circumstances, soldiers were soon torturing two thirds of the Palestinians they held captive. Professor David Luban explains: “Escalation is the rule, not the aberration. Abu Ghraib is the fully predictable image of what a torture culture looks like.”

The gap between the Republican and Democratic Parties is too narrow, but on this issue it is hefty. The Republicans have curdled into the Party of Torture, bullying their torture-victim nominee into backing their barbarism, and proudly picking a torturer as their candidate for Congress.”

3.  2004 election stolen in Ohio by Republicans:

“as you can see, it’s highly specific and technical. Therefore, it’s a sort of an unwieldy smoking gun, but it is a smoking gun because they discovered that John Kerry was variously robbed of two hundred thousand votes in those 18 counties alone. There’s no argument with this. In the illustrations you can see ballots with stickers placed over the square beside John Kerry’s name, thousands of ballots that were marked so that they would be over-votes when people voted on them. The range and the ingenuity of the fraud tactics are astonishing. After Phillips did his research, 55 boards of election out of 86 counties in Ohio, in defiance of a court order, destroyed all or part of their ballots-that is 1.5 million ballots. That was a malicious destruction of evidence.

Well, election theft is a two-part process. On the one hand is vote suppression. The purpose of vote suppression is to shrink the electorate before the fact. In the last four years or so they have moved somewhat away from fraudulent manipulation of ballots cast toward grand pre-emptive tactics meant to prevent people from voting in the first place. So within the realm of vote suppression, they have managed to purge literally millions of names from the voter roles. In New York state alone, we learned last week, 1.5 million voters have been purged without their knowledge. That’s New York; it’s not even a swing state.

There was a report, I think on Daily Kos, that the Justice Department has managed to effect the purge of 13 million votes. I don’t know how many of those are legitimate purges because a lot of peoples’ names shouldn’t be on the list because they’re dead or something. But between legal purges conducted by the Department of Justice and illegal purges of the electronic voter roles carried out by various partisan secretaries of state, and voter caging and other tactics, they’ve managed to do a great deal to shrink the pool of voters who would vote against McCain. That kind of thing will require a lot of fighting and amassing evidence which means that there’s got to be a lot of video interviews, polls, phone calls placed to the hotlines-what I’m saying is that this grand stroke of dis-enfranchisement before election day has to be exposed and evidence thereof collected and made available.

But that’s not the only thing you do when you steal an election. You also engage in electronic fraud. Here, we have the testimony of an incredibly important person named Stephen Spoonamore who is the star witness in a RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act) investigation in Ohio. He’s a conservative Republican and a former McCain supporter, but most importantly, he is a prominent expert in the detection of computer fraud.

Yes, in all this talk about voting, it’s important to acknowledge that we have fettishized the ballot box and overestimated voting as if it were the only instrument available to us for democratic action. It’s not the only instrument-there are all kinds of things we can and should do; however, I do think that voting is a fundamental and necessary instrument, but it’s not really a democratic action if there isn’t popular control and oversight. We have a long way to go before we have a democratic voting system. What we actually have is a ritual-the same as in Iraq. People voted there too!

Precisely because we have fettishized voting we are often that much less able to face the fact that the whole process has been subverted just as surely as it is subverted in closed societies. It’s very hard for Americans to wrap their minds around this because it’s a tremendous blow to our self-image and our exceptionalism. I don’t think that the general public has as much trouble facing that as the establishment and media do.”

4.  I thought the press was supposed to be against those in power, to afflict the comforted and comfort the afflicted:

What’s vital here is that none of this is unique to the McCain campaign.  McCain learned best how to exploit the craven need for approval and sense of belonging which characterizes most modern journalists, but that is the dynamic that drives most of our reporting.  That’s what makes these episodes — when all of this gets unmasked — so valuable.

Generally speaking, the modern journalist, and especially campaign reporters, want to be friends with and trusted colleagues to those in political power — “part of the team,” as Kurtz put it.  The price for that acceptance is refraining from making those in political power look bad (the rule which Reston unintentionally, and with great remorse, violated), and instead serving as amplifying tools to make them look good. And it’s a price that most journalists are not just willing, but vigorously eager, to pay.  It defines the role the modern journalist now plays.”

4.  Obama is definitely the lesser of two evils:

With these fundamental distinctions in mind, we have the tools for a deep understanding of the contest between Obama and McCain. Obama is a thoughtful and articulate man who attempts to present issues, indeed would likely be a black FDR dedicated to the public order, a functional system of checks and balances, a restoration of privacy and end to the quest for an empire in the middle east. McCain is the opposite. He conducts a scurrilous campaign of lies and innuendo. He promises “victory” in Iraq which means the subjugation of the Iraqi people and the absorption of the Islamic countries into the American empire. His claim that “redistribution of wealth equals socialism” is the major tenet of the view that any progressive legislation, e.g. an income tax, is totalitarianism. In other words, McCain belongs to that extreme right wing that wants to abolish the entire spectrum of politics of a modern republic.

So if you add-up the things that McCain is devoted to: the destruction of the politics of a republic and the construction of an empire of nation-states based on corporate and military power you have precisely the fundamental tenets of fascism.

I submit to you the choice is profound: Obama gives us a continuation of the imperialist, hegemonic, corporate republic that has made life for so many of us very comfortable (and for many millions misery). McCain offers us the end of modern enlightenment politics and the establishment of a fascist state; and, ultimately, our own destruction.”

5. “12 reasons to reject Obama and support McKinney/Nader [click on link]

The intellectuals who, in the name of ‘realism’, support a politician who publicly and openly embraces new wars, billionaire bailouts and for profit, private sector-run health programs are repudiating their own claims as ‘responsible critics’.  They are what C. Wright Mills called ‘crackpot realists’, abdicating their responsibility as critical intellectuals.  In purporting to support the ‘lesser evil’ they are promoting the ‘greater evil’: The continuation of four more years of deepening recession, colonial wars and popular alienation.  Moreover, they are allies of the mass media, major parties and the legal system which has marginalized or outright excluded the alternative candidates, Ralph Nader and Cynthia McKinney, who do speak out and oppose the war, the pro-Wall Street bailouts and propose genuine large-scale public investment in the domestic economy, a universal single payer health program, sustainable and pro-environment economic policies and large-scale, long-term income redistributive policies.

What is crass and unacceptable is the argument of these intellectuals, (an insignificant pimple on the Democratic donkey’s rear-end)that for a single moment believe that their ‘critical support’ of the Obama political machine will open space for radical ideas.  The Zionists and civilian militarists totally control Obama’s war policy in the Middle East:  There will be no space for peace with Iran, Palestine, Pakistan, Afghanistan or Iraq.  Wall Street controls the Obama’s financial policy:  There will be no space for some Cambridge progressive to sneak in a handout for families losing their homes.

If multi-million trade union treasuries have spent a hundred million dollars on each presidential campaign  have failed to secure a single piece of progressive legislation in over 50 years, isn’t it delusional for our progressive ‘public intellectuals’ to imagine that they, in their splendid organizational isolation, can ‘pressure’ President Obama to renounce his advisers, backers and public defense of military escalation, to see his way to peace with Iran and to promote social justice for our workers and unemployed?”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: