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Cashing in

Leon Panetta joins the for-profit college scam!

Christie to climate: Drop dead

All these people who mistake Chris Christie for a moderate need to start paying closer attention.

Virtually Speaking Thursday

Marcy Wheeler: Obama, Natl Security & Counterterrorism

Thus May 30 6p PT/9p ET –

Marcy Wheeler discusses the implications of Obama’s May 2013 national security speech in which he outlined a new direction for the country’s national security and counterterrorism efforts, from drone strikes in Pakistan to the prison at Guantánamo Bay. Jay Ackroyd hosts.

Follow @emptywheel @JayAckroyd

Listen live or later: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/virtuallyspeaking/2013/05/31/marcy-wheeler-virtually-speaking-with-jay-ackroyd

Human chain against chained CPI

Save the date:

July 2ND, 2013

Where: AZ, CA, CT, IA, IL, MD/DC, ME, MO, MT, NC, NH, NM, NV, OH, PA, RI, TX, VT, WA
What: National Day of Action to create a HUMAN CHAIN in front of target Congressional offices and key Federal Buildings
Contact: Michelle Campbell, Field Mobilization Support Administrator 202-637-5361 or mcampbell@retiredamericans.org

On Tuesday July 2nd, the Alliance will sponsor a National Day of Action in which we focus specifically on elevating grassroots voices in the battle to protect and enhance retirement security. We will work together to create a HUMAN CHAIN in front of target Congressional offices, key Federal buildings, and other strategic locations in states around the country. It would be a Human Chain against the Chained CPI. The National Alliance will host a media event in DC with a smaller chain to create powerful symbolism of what the States are doing, spotlighting the national day of action.

Noam Chomsky

So I’m an anarchist, apparently!

Michael S. Wilson:You are, among many other things, a self-described anarchist — an anarcho-syndicalist, specifically. Most people think of anarchists as disenfranchised punks throwing rocks at store windows, or masked men tossing ball-shaped bombs at fat industrialists. Is this an accurate view? What is anarchy to you?

Noam Chomsky:Well, anarchism is, in my view, basically a kind of tendency in human thought which shows up in different forms in different circumstances, and has some leading characteristics. Primarily it is a tendency that is suspicious and skeptical of domination, authority, and hierarchy. It seeks structures of hierarchy and domination in human life over the whole range, extending from, say, patriarchal families to, say, imperial systems, and it asks whether those systems are justified. It assumes that the burden of proof for anyone in a position of power and authority lies on them. Their authority is not self-justifying. They have to give a reason for it, a justification. And if they can’t justify that authority and power and control, which is the usual case, then the authority ought to be dismantled and replaced by something more free and just. And, as I understand it, anarchy is just that tendency. It takes different forms at different times.

Anarcho-syndicalism is a particular variety of anarchism which was concerned primarily, though not solely, but primarily with control over work, over the work place, over production. It took for granted that working people ought to control their own work, its conditions, [that] they ought to control the enterprises in which they work, along with communities, so they should be associated with one another in free associations, and … democracy of that kind should be the foundational elements of a more general free society. And then, you know, ideas are worked out about how exactly that should manifest itself, but I think that is the core of anarcho-syndicalist thinking. I mean it’s not at all the general image that you described — people running around the streets, you know, breaking store windows — but [anarcho-syndicalism] is a conception of a very organized society, but organized from below by direct participation at every level, with as little control and domination as is feasible, maybe none.

A ‘dehumanizing stare’

Hmm. What do you suppose this incident has in common with so many others? Let me think…

A 14-year-old was reportedly choked by Miami-Dade police and charged with a felony count of resisting arrest with violence and disorderly conduct, all for giving police “dehumanizing stares,” clenching his fists and appearing threatening.

Unfortunately, it’s not all that rare for teens to be brutalized or even killed by police in the United States. There also seems to be something about police in Florida being especially violent for no apparent reason as they were when they beat a 66-year-old and when they murdered Nick Christie.

The incident occurred on Haulover Beach in Miami, Florida on Memorial Day morning after police said they saw Tremaine McMillian slamming another teenager on the sand.

“They told him that behavior was unacceptable,” Miami-Dade Police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta said to CBS Miami. “He walked away and officers followed him. They asked where his parents were. He said he was not going to take them to them.

“When he started to leave the beach area, officers had to get off their ATVs to detain him,” Zabaleta continued. “He had closed arms, clenched fists and pulled his arm away.”

“Once he was approaching the road, the officers restrained him. Again his body language was that he was stiffening up and pulling away,” Zabaleta said. “Now you’re resisting officers at that point and when the hands are swinging and you are resisting officers, at that point you have to be taken into custody.”

A real political coverup

Even if they tried, Democrats could never compete with the Republicans when it comes to running a political coverup:

It would take nearly two decades for the October Surprise cover-up to crumble with admissions by officials involved in the investigation that its exculpatory conclusions were rushed, that crucial evidence had been hidden or ignored, and that some alibis for key Republicans didn’t make any sense. [For details, see Robert Parry’s America’s Stolen Narrative.]

In the near term, however, Republicans succeeded in their well-organized cover-up. They were aided immensely by Newsweek and The New Republic, which published matching stories on their covers in mid-November 1991 claiming to have debunked the October Surprise allegations by proving that Casey could not have made the trip to Madrid in 1980.

Though Bush’s White House already had the State Department’s information contradicting the smug self-certainty of the two magazines, the administration made no effort to correct the record. Yet, even without Beach’s memorandum, there was solid evidence at the time disproving the Newsweek/New Republic debunking articles.

Both magazines had sloppily misread attendance records at a London historical conference that Casey had attended on July 28, 1980, the time frame when Iranian businessman (and CIA agent) Jamshid Hashemi had placed Casey in Madrid for a secret meeting with Iranian emissary Mehdi Karrubi.

The two magazines insisted that the attendance records showed Casey in London for a morning session of the conference, thus negating the possibility that he could have made a side trip to Madrid. However, the magazines had failed to do the necessary follow-up interviews, which would have revealed that Casey was not at the morning session on July 28. He didn’t arrive until that afternoon, leaving the “window” open for Hashemi’s account.

At PBS “Frontline,” where I was involved in the October Surprise investigation, we talked to Americans and others who had participated in the London conference. Most significantly, we interviewed historian Robert Dallek who gave that morning’s presentation to a small gathering of attendees sitting in a conference room at the British Imperial War Museum.

Dallek said he had been excited to learn that Casey, who was running Reagan’s presidential campaign, would be there. So, Dallek looked for Casey, only to be disappointed that Casey was a no-show. Other Americans also recalled Casey arriving later and the records actually indicate Casey showing up for the afternoon session.

In other words, the high-profile Newsweek-New Republic debunking of the October Surprise story had itself been debunked. However, typical of the arrogance of those publications – and our inability to draw attention to their major screw-up – the magazines never acknowledged their gross error.

Worse Than Sloppiness

I later learned that the journalistic malfeasance at Newsweek was even worse than sloppiness. Journalist Craig Unger, who had been hired by Newsweek to work on the October Surprise story, told me that he had spotted the misreading of the attendance records before Newsweek published its article and alerted the investigative team, which was personally headed by executive editor Maynard Parker.

“They told me, essentially, to fuck off,” Unger said.

Go read it, and remind yourself what these people are capable of.

I guess this isn’t meant to be ironic

Which makes it just plain insane!

BREMERTON, Wash. — On the heels of a historic decision by the Boy Scouts of America, a local priest is making history of his own. He’s among the first in the country to cut all ties to the scouts, now that the organization has agreed to allow openly gay members.

Father Derek Lappe is the priest at Our Lady Star of the Sea in Bremerton.

For years, the church has served as the chartering organization for BSA Troop 1501 in Kitsap County.

“We do things like scout Sunday at mass, the boys are just very much a part of our parish and the life of our parish,” he said.

It’s a partnership he’s now ending, because of the Boy Scout’s latest policy change.

“It was a very difficult decision, it’s a very sad thing, with the long legacy we have of scouting in this parish,” he said.

Ultimately, Lappe says the new scouting policy just doesn’t align with the values and teachings of the Catholic Church.

Barbaric

This piece makes me so angry. You know what an anencephalic fetus looks like?
Continue Reading »

Don’t explain

Chan Marshall covers Billie Holiday:

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