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15 March 2008

Washington Post Columnist Gives AIPAC Talks on How to Help Israel in `08 Election, by Philip Weiss | Israel e-news: "Israel's Daily News Mag"

Peter Beinart is also an editor-at-large for The New Republic, a "liberal" propaganda rag for the Israel lobbies.

He's also been signatory to Project for a New American Century (PNAC) letters. Some "liberal."

FBI Found to Misuse Security Letters | WaPo

File under, "no shit?"

14 March 2008

Fox Attacks Obama, Part 2

Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan

A worthy repeat of a Vietnam-era event sponsored by Iraq Veterans Against the War. (Here's a documentary on the original.)

Back when John Kerry had a pair, he was involved with such things. No more.

How many Oklahoma City bombings are we in for, now that we've warped all these kids in worthless, meaningless wars -- and then turned our back on them?

Eliot's Mess, by Greg Palast

An apt comparison of the shenanigans of Spitzer and Ben Bernancke. A taste:

While New York Governor Eliot Spitzer was paying an ‘escort’ $4,300 in a hotel room in Washington, just down the road, George Bush’s new Federal Reserve Board Chairman, Ben Bernanke, was secretly handing over $200 billion in a tryst with mortgage bank industry speculators.

Both acts were wanton, wicked and lewd. But there’s a BIG difference. The Governor was using his own checkbook. Bush’s man Bernanke was using ours.
Scott Horton on Spitzer: here, here, here, and here. Anyone who thinks that this Justice Department isn't a political hit squad has either drunk the Kool-Aid or is too stupid and naive to see the writing on the wall.

Nader, The Clintons, Obama, Gore, and Edwards | Paul Street

Excellent analysis. Ought to answer back the "spoiler" hysterics, as well as the Clintonistas (whether you're for Hillary or Obama -- either way, you're a Clintonista, like it or not).

More here:

Kucinich on House's Rare Secret Session on Spy Bill

13 March 2008

'Fox' Fallon Fired...And We're F*cked, by Justin Raimondo

Make sure to follow all the links; Raimondo knows his shit. Yes, I know: a conservative. Who cares? He's got the neocons' number, and is for a republic -- silly him!

More here from Robert Parry, a liberal/progressive. Hmmm...they basically agree...maybe politics isn't a sporting event after all?

Chomsky on the War on Terror, Suicide Bombing, et al

More sane talk from a sane and honest man...second part to come (here it is):

Greensumption: The Only Solution Americans Can Handle

I bought a used Prius.

Anyway, I'm thoroughly sick of the green marketing bullshit.

Check out the International Forum on Globalization, including their recent meeting, "Confronting the Global 'Triple Crisis': Climate Change, Peak Oil, Global Resource Depletion & Extinction" They could have thrown in nuclear weapons, too, of course.

Disabuse Your Illusion: Weighing Obama in the Balance of Reality, Chris Floyd

More excellent analysis; check out the link therein to Robert Parry's Consortiumnews piece as well. Key quote:

Hope, said Emily Dickinson, is the thing with feathers, a tough little bird that sounds sweetest in the midst of a storm. It's a commonplace by now, but no less true, that Barack Obama's winged words of hope have borne him up to the high place where he stands now, on the threshold of the White House. And these words shine all the more brightly against the torrent of filth that the Bush Regime has rained down upon the American people for years. Thus it's no surprise that millions of people have been inspired by Obama -- including a million who have put their money where their hope is, in the most remarkable grass-roots funding campaign in U.S. political history.

It can't be denied that an Obama presidency would be better in many respects than the Bush regime -- if only for the replacement of the thousands of fanatics, cranks and witless apparatchiks with whom Bush has packed the federal bureaucracy. The ouster of these cadres will make an appreciable difference, on the ground, in the lives of many people. To cite just one instance, it is likely that an Obama administration (or a Clinton administration, for that matter) would restore the funding to family planning services and health clinics in the poorest regions of the world that Bush has maliciously -- and murderously -- cut off to please the religious extremists in his political base. That alone would save thousands of lives each year.

But to make this observation is not an endorsement of Obama's candidacy, nor a call for "lesser evilism." It's simply a statement of fact. As we've said here before, echoing Noam Chomsky, even small mitigations in the operation of vast power structures can translate into benefits -- or alleviations of suffering -- for substantial numbers of people. Again, this is an observable fact, not a value judgment. Whether these mitigations of injustice and suffering in certain instances outweigh the cost of participating in -- and thereby to some extent legitimizing and perpetuating -- a system that inevitably produces injustice and suffering on a massive scale is a question that each person must decide for themselves, in their own individual conscience.

And this question is certainly pertinent in the case of Barack Obama. For by the choices he has made in picking advisers to help him shape his policies, he has given every indication that while his presidency might represent a better management and presentation of the current system, it will in no way overturn or even seriously challenge it on any essential point. In other words -- and bearing in mind the type of not-insubstantial mitigations noted above -- he will keep doing what Bush has been doing, only more competently, less radically, with a greater care for the long-term viability of the power structure. And what is that structure that Obama seeks to refine and extend? It is an imperial system based on militarism and the exaltation of elitist profit and privilege above all other concerns.
For what it's worth, when asked on Znet how he's approaching this election, Chomsky wrote:
My feeling is that it's worth keeping McCain out. He could turn out to be very dangerous. So if I were in a swing state, I'd vote against Bush [sic; he obviously means McCain], hence for whatever Democrat runs. Without enthusiasm. Since I'm in a safe state, the question is unlikely to arise, and there are other choices: abstention, an effort to contribute to some independent party, maybe other choices.
The whole matter is of secondary importance, in my opinion. The real issues lie elsewhere: in creating popular movements that will influence what elected officials do whoever they are, and work for more long-term changes in the sociopolitical/economic system.


Gore Vidal Interview, The Paris Review, 1974

Gore Vidal on "Cynicism" and Corruption, 1982

Not much has changed, even since Vidal's Senate run.

Taxi to the Dark Side

12 March 2008

John Pilger, Cambodia: The Betrayal

John Pilger, Do You Remember Vietnam? (1978) and Vietnam: The Last Battle (1995)

How is what we did in Vietnam any different from what the Nazis did in Europe? Recall that we had a mass concentration-camp policy (using bombing to drive peasants into "strategic hamlets") before you reject this comparison out of hand. Include chemical warfare, total ecological destruction, and Kissinger's infamous order: "Anything that flies against anything that moves."

John Pilger, The Mexicans, 1980

Vidal Interviewed on Inventing a Nation: Washington, Jefferson, Adams, 20 Nov 2003

11 March 2008

The Making of The Shining, Vivian Kubrick

Orson Welles, Macbeth, 1948: Opening Scenes

NSA's Domestic Spying Grows | Wall Street Journal

Big shock, right?

I know you're stunned.

$300 Million from Chavez to FARC a Fake

John Pilger Lecture at University of Kent

Unembeddable; click the title to see...

Al Jazeera on Gaza: Rocket Launchers and the IDF

10 March 2008

Scene by Scene: Roman Polanski

Peeping Tom: A Very British Psycho

Monitor interview with Alfred Hitchcock, 1964

Cinefile: Stanley Kubrick: The Invisible Man

Peter Cook: Teaching Ravens to Fly Underwater

Beyond the Fringe: Original Show

Peter Cook and John Cleese: Neville Chamberlain Skit, 1980

Mark Steel on Sylvia Pankhurst

Mark Steel on Mary Shelley

Mark Steel on Beethoven

Samantha Loses Power: Obama Advisor Resigns for Clinton Comments

From Democracy Now:

Meanwhile a senior foreign policy advisor to Obama has resigned after she was quoted calling Hillary Clinton “a monster.” The advisor, Samantha Power, was speaking to the Scotsman newspaper. Power called Clinton a “monster” who “is stooping to anything” to win the campaign. In a statement, Power apologized and said her comments were inexcusable. She had widely been seen as a pick for a senior position in an Obama White House. Power also caused controversy last week when she appeared to downplay Obama’s stated commitment to a timeline for pulling troops from Iraq. In an interview with the BBC, Power called Obama’s withdrawal plan a “best case scenario” that could change if conditions on the ground were different by the time he took office.
Nice. Good-bye, Samantha Power. I'm sure she'll be back at Harvard, post-haste.

More on Power here.

Not that Hillary's foreign policy advisors are any better, of course.

Chomsky on Axis of Justice Radio

From the YouTube description:
I've taken this interview from the Axis of Justice Radio show, and took out the music parts that are placed between questions.

"Axis of Justice is a non-profit organization formed by Tom Morello of Audioslave and Serj Tankian of System of a Down. Its purpose is to bring together musicians, fans of music, and grassroots political organizations to fight for social justice. We aim to build a bridge between fans of music around the world and local political organizations to effectively organize around issues of peace, human rights, and economic justice."

The following interview aired on KPFK radio January 13, 2006. The actual interview
took place on December 19, 2005.

You can read the transcript for this interview here: http://www.axisofjustice.org/PDF/AOJ_Chomsky_Interview.pdf