Raging in the streets by Alexander Billet + One Day as a Lion

Dandelion Salad

by Alexander Billet
November 7, 2008

Rage Against the Machine is back just in time, with a newfound creative and political confidence, Alexander Billet explains.

WHEN RAGE Against the Machine played their first show in seven years at last April’s Coachella Festival, it invoked the wrath of none other than Ann Coulter. Within days of their comeback, the archconservative pundit was on Fox News denouncing comments made by front man Zack de la Rocha as “violent” and “hate speech,” before labeling the group “irrelevant.” Though it may be easy to chalk the segment up to Murdoch-fueled bluster, it also showed that Rage was doing something right.

In an era where bands reunite merely to cash in on empty nostalgia (for example, Smashing Pumpkins), Rage Against the Machine have returned as their rabble-rousing selves. The past year and a half have seen them put action behind words much as they did before their breakup in 2000. They have spoken out for immigrant rights, publicly allied themselves with Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), and most recently played shows for protesters at both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions.

The band has rediscovered creative and political confidence that fits these tumultuous times perfectly. This fall has also seen the group’s two most politically outspoken members release material from their own projects. Guitarist Tom Morello has released a second album under his acoustic alter ego, the Nightwatchman, and De la Rocha has released One Day as a Lion, his collaboration with former Mars Volta drummer John Theodore. If music tells us something about the time we live in, then Rage’s ability to find roots today signifies a shift that this country hasn’t seen in a long time.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

There’ll Be No Shelter Here

When asked why Rage was reuniting in early 2007, Morello responded, “Is it a coincidence that in the seven years that Rage Against The Machine has been away that the country has slid into right-wing purgatory? I think not.”

It would be easy to paint this as a statement of supreme arrogance–as if the political future of a country was tied to the actions of one single rock band. But recent polls suggest the U.S. populace has tilted leftward in a big way. Two-thirds of Americans believe that the government should provide universal health care for all its citizens. The war in Iraq is opposed by almost 60 percent of those polled, who think U.S. troops should leave as soon as possible. And with the specter of global recession looming, 62 percent of Americans blame the government’s failure to regulate the banks and mortgage companies and are unhappy that taxpayers have to foot the bill.

This is a far cry from the state of the country in October 2000 when Rage called it quits. The knee-jerk nationalism and dollar-store flag-waving that came in the wake of 9/11 generated a climate largely intolerant of criticism. These were hard years for anyone of radical or even progressive political stance. Rage Against the Machine’s Web site was shut down by the FBI for a few days and every song in their catalog was banned by Clear Channel in the wake of 9/11 the attacks.

Since the midterm elections in 2006, though, Americans’ anger and dissatisfaction with the Bush administration’s mismanagement has grown. And the Democrats’ inability to do anything about Iraq coupled with the continuing plummet in Republican credibility has sent growing numbers of young people toward radical ideas and activism. These shifting political winds made it clear that is was only a matter of time before Rage would be swept into the maelstrom again.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Out of the Wilderness

It appears that nobody felt the sting of Rage’s disintegration more than Zack de la Rocha. While the other three members embarked on the successful but notably apolitical Audioslave, De la Rocha all but faded into the background. He made only a few occasional public appearances at union rallies or benefits and released a song here, a song there. He made a solo album that was never released. A few guest appearances were all that the talented lyricist could seem to muster.

De la Rocha discussed these wilderness years with Ann Powers in a recent Los Angeles Times interview

When I left Rage…first off, I was very heartbroken, and secondly, I became obsessed with completely reinventing my wheel. In an unhealthy way, to a degree. I kind of forgot that old way of allowing yourself to just be a conduit.”

With One Day as a Lion, the first thing one notices is how un-Rage it sounds. John Theodore’s drumming is a free-flowing opposite to Rage drummer Brad Wilk’s hard hip-hop-influenced beats. (De la Rocha describes Theodore as a mixture of John Bonham and Elvin Jones.) The fuzzed-out keyboards, played by the De la Rocha, have a three-chord simplicity to them that is more punk than anything else.

The lyrics, though, are trademark De la Rocha. On the title track, he draws a connection between poor kids in LA and the people of Iraq:

We comin’ like peoples army
For the people who can’t eat
Who work with no sleep
For the child with no shoes on their feet…
Tear mics till my voice get raspy
Faced flame for five centuries
And if L.A. were Baghdad we’d be Iraqi!

The EP displays how De la Rocha himself has been emboldened by the shifting political climate. He described the impetus behind the EP’s opener, “Wild International,” to Powers:

The name speaks about a generation of people, a kind of development that I feel. It’s an intuition about people who aren’t going to be so concerned about elections to get what they need. And whose politics aren’t going to revolve around a bourgeois morality. Their interests are going to be focused on food and housing and justice and revenge.

Brave words? Undoubtedly. And words that could easily be dismissed as radical jargon. But it’s plain that De la Rocha doesn’t take them lightly.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

The Black Robin Hood

Tom Morello hasn’t exactly been out of the spotlight like De la Rocha has. Audioslave sold five million albums and toured internationally. His political opinions found lower-profile outlets, like his internet radio show Axis of Justice, with System of a Down’s Serj Tankian.

Morello wouldn’t inject politics into his music again until 2003. The guitarist put aside his amps and effects pedals in favor of a cheap secondhand acoustic and developed a style of agit-folk in the vein of Joe Hill, Woody Guthrie, Phil Ochs and Joan Baez. Dubbing himself the Nightwatchman, he released One Man Revolution in April 2007, five days before Rage’s reunion show at Coachella.

Morello has brought an impressive amount of outspoken bravado to the project. “The Nightwatchman is the Black Robin Hood of the 21st century,” he declared to MTV, “a reaction against illicit wars, against first strikes, torture, secret prisons, spying illegally on American citizens…and it’s a reaction against a few corporations that grow rich [off] this illicit war while people beg for food in the city streets.”

While One Man Revolution featured very little apart from guitar, the occasional harmonica, and Morello’s deep baritone voice, the follow-up, The Fabled City, incorporates percussion, organ, piano, steel guitar and violins. It’s a much more raucous album, a ramshackle call to arms for those battered by the past seven years.

Morello’s lyrics evoke Dylan’s finger-pointin’ songs and Tom Joad-era Springsteen, weaving stories of outcasts stuck between fallen movements and the uprisings of the future. He likens the generals of Guantánamo to “The King of Hell,” prays for the flood waters of Katrina to drown the president, and channels the spirit of the true believer in “Whatever it Takes”:

Flood waters raise the ramparts
I’ll meet you now wherever you are
I’m here until the frontline breaks
Whatever it takes

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

The Microphone Explodes

If there was any doubt that the reunited Rage would be as committed as in their previous incarnation, it was put to rest at recent rallies. As thousands marched in the streets demanding an end to war, inequality and poverty, Rage were among a diverse array of musicians and artists who performed to show their solidarity. Not mere entertainment, these bands were seeking encourage and galvanize the protesters.

In Denver, at the Tent State Music Festival to End the War, they performed for more than 10,000 people. Halfway through their set, Rage brought onstage members of Iraq Veterans Against the War, who after the show led a march of thousands to the convention center to demand a meeting with Barack Obama.

In a recent interview, IVAW member Phil Aliff stressed the importance of having a group like Rage allied with them:

The Rage Against the Machine concert is a good example of how to use political music strategically. From the beginning, when the performers started talking about GI resistance, there wasn’t much of a response, but by the end, people were fired up and ready to go.

At the Republican Convention, protests were characterized by almost constant clashes with police. Activists, journalists, even regular passersby were sometimes subject to the heavy-handed tactics of the St. Paul Police Department. Rage’s music seemed to complement the chaos on the streets, as well as the unity that the protests showed in the face of riot gear and tear gas.

When police shut down the Ripple Effect festival after Anti-Flag’s set, Rage Against the Machine, who were expected to play, went up sans instruments, and De la Rocha addressed the crowd:

The reality is we’re just four musicians from Los Angeles who have used our voices and our talent and our musicianship and our words to stand up against these unjust policies. And why the fuck are these cops so afraid of us? Are they afraid of us? Nah, they’re not afraid of four musicians. They’re afraid of you!”

From there, Morello and De la Rocha launched into an a cappella–yes, a cappella–version of “Bulls on Parade.” With armed cops waiting to pounce, the two used a megaphone to perform, with Morello half-singing-half-beatboxing the song’s iconic “wow-wow-chika-wow-wow.”

De la Rocha’s speech during the Republican National Convention (the band performed in Minneapolis during the convention) speaks to the power that a social movement has on artists and musicians. Not only are they back, but they have thrown themselves onto the frontline of protest and activism.

Where this volatile mixture of anger, hope and glimpses of protest goes is anyone’s guess. In a country whose youth are quickly shifting to the left, to say Rage Against the Machine will find an audience is an understatement. They may find something much more powerful: a movement.

First published at PopMatters.com.


replaced video May 19, 2012

One Day As A Lion

on Jul 26, 2008

One Day As A Lion – One Day As A Lion

One Day As A Lion with their debut EP, which is self-titled. The EP consists of 5 songs. One Day As A Lion is a duo consisting of Zack De La Rocha, the singer of Rage Against The Machine and Jon Theodore, the former drummer of The Mars Volta.

1. Wild International
2. Ocean View
3. Last Letter
4. If You Fear Dying
5. One Day As A Lion

Zack De La Rocha – Vocals/Keyboard
Jon Theodore – Drums

Blood soaked earth that you call home
Close your eyes but don’t sleep
We comin’ like peoples army
For the people who can’t eat
Who work with no sleep
For the child
With no shoes on their feet
A generation who flash heat
Who role up on the banks
For their cash see
You’re the criminal?
You got the nerve to ask me
Tear mics till my voice get raspy
Faced flame for five centuries
And if LA were Baghdad we’d be Iraqi
With our straps in the backseat
Next to a general tied up
With shit in his khakis
Best leave my mic alone I’m full grown
And I’m off to the green zone

After dark my city’s a fuse
After dark my city’s a fuse
One day I say today we live as a lion

Blood soaked earth that you call home

I heard this cat got life in the pen
Crossing sand in the back of a truck bed
Twelve deep heard sirens and lights red
Was smacked on his dome with the club of
A white fed
No food no water no rights read
He came north to keep his seeds
And his wife fed
In the middle of the darkest night bled
Stepped to the law and said
You a minuteman wait a minute man
Talk like that might limit your life span

After dark my city’s a fuse
One day I say today we live as a lion
And when our cubs grow
We’ll show you what war is good for


RNC – St Paul-Minneapolis MN

DNC – Denver CO

Marriage has reached its sell by date By Roland Michel Tremblay

By Roland Michel Tremblay
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
The Marginal
Nov. 9, 2008

Let’s start a real debate about marriage, not just a question of if gay marriage is acceptable or not. Marriage is certainly an interesting concept, mostly a religious one. Religions, great at making official for the record these unions, a task eventually also espoused by the State, and can now be given legally, almost administratively. In this millennium, after so much liberation in the Western World, is marriage not becoming a past date concept, obsolete? And what about baptism? They are religious institutions we desperately need to free ourselves from.

I will get straight to the point, I am gay, I have been in a stable relationship with another man for 15 years. We are in love and are faithful to each other. I didn’t say free from arguments and problems plaguing our existence, I said faithful. Not because we hold dear to this concept, but because not being faithful brings more troubles than it is worth. And I guess there comes a time when, well, you don’t see the point anymore of going to clubs and meeting people.

My sister has been in a relationship for perhaps ten years now, she had two children with her boyfriend, with a third one from his first marriage which failed spectacularly. The Court, the irrationality, the nightmare. After that he does not want to marry again, and she, never saw what marriage was good for, she never believed in this sort of institution. I’m proud of my sister.

And you should have seen the crisis when they decided that their kids would not be baptized, you would have thought they had simply declared that the Third World War was on. It is possible to get un-baptized these days, I would seriously be considering it, if it were not acknowledging this institution in the process. I do not believe in any of these institutions, neither should you.

What is marriage exactly? The union of a man and a woman together, supposedly for life, unless somehow you can find a way to cancel it or terminate it. We are getting expert at that, and there is nothing wrong with this state of affair. It is in fact significant, you can only wonder if marriage is truly necessary nowadays.

At the moment, the challenge is to extend this marriage to gay couples, and perhaps also eventually to people living together in some sort of interdependence without any sexual interaction. These unions are now acknowledged in Common Law by any government for legal purposes, making marriage obsolete. Still worried? You don’t need to get married to sign a contract similar to a pre-nuptial agreement.

Continue reading

The Corfu Set: Honour among Billionaires, Banksters, Oligarchs – and the New Labour and new Tory new rich

Dandelion Salad

by Michael Faulkner
November 02, 2008

In the midst of a global financial crisis the likes of which we have never seen before, a story concerning the proposal to donate £50.000 to a British political party seems of too little  importance or interest to warrant any comment. With banks collapsing or taken into public ownership, and £billions of taxpayers money thrown into an emergency relief operation to shore up the financial system, £50.000 seems no more than a penny or dime thrown to a beggar or dropped in the street. Nevertheless, the story has dominated the headlines during the past few days and it has exposed something of the close connections and secretive social networking of those who wield power and influence in U.K. party politics and international high finance.

The controversy about the proposed donation is only part of a bigger story involving the close association between leading U.K. politicians of both main parties, a Russian tycoon and a Rothschild heir. The revelations about their association have the potential to seriously damage the Tory party, one of whose leaders is at the centre of the donations controversy. But they also involve a leading New Labour politician, only recently restored to high office in Britain. The events concerned took place a few months ago on the Greek island of Corfu. These are the dramatis personae:

George Osborne. Leading Tory politician, he is the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer – the office to which he will be appointed if the Tories win the next election. Like the leader of his party and close friend, David Cameron, he is a graduate of Oxford University, where, as a student he belonged to the notorious, right wing Bullingdon Club, membership of which is generally restricted to students from aristocratic backgrounds and the super rich. David Cameron was also a club member. Osborne’s father is Sir Peter Osborne, 17th Baronet.

Continue reading

Sparks are flying across the Atlantic by Bruce Gagnon


by Bruce Gagnon
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
Bruce’s blog post
Nov. 9, 2008

Which Was It?

Obama has not even been sworn into office yet and already the sparks are flying across the Atlantic.

The BBC reported on November 8 that Polish President Lech Kaczynski said in a statement published on his website that during a phone call with Mr. Obama the president-elect had “emphasised the importance of the strategic partnership of Poland and the U.S. and expressed hope in the continuation of political and military co-operation between our countries.”

“He also said that the missile defence project [Bush’s plan to deploy U.S. interceptor missiles in Poland] would continue,” the statement added.

During his campaign Obama had said otherwise.

Then, the same day, the BBC published a second article quoting an Obama spokesperson saying, “U.S. President-elect Barack Obama has not given a commitment to go ahead with plans to build part of a U.S. missile defence system in Poland.”

When asked about the declaration, Obama foreign policy adviser, Denis McDonough said that the president-elect had “a good conversation” with Mr. Kaczynski about the American-Polish alliance and discussed missile defence, but “made no commitment on it”.

“His position is as it was throughout the campaign, that he supports deploying a missile defence system when the technology is proved to be workable,” Mr. McDonough said.

OK, are you just a bit confused? I am.

Someone is speaking with a forked tongue. Is it Polish President Lech Kaczynski who is telling a tall tale? Why would he, after his first conversation with Obama, lie to the world about their talk? That would constitute getting off to a very bad start with the new U.S. president which I would imagine is not something the Polish government would want to do. I would venture to guess Kaczynski was excited about the conversation and wanted to share it with the whole world that Obama had changed his mind on the deployment issue.

On Obama’s part I can imagine he might have figured their conversation was private and “off the record.” But when it suddenly was splashed across the world via the BBC that Obama had changed his position the embarrassment was too much and a denial had to be immediately issued.

So who was telling the fib?

What it indicates to me, if it turns out to be true that Obama had changed his mind, is that the new president cannot be trusted to really buck the military industrial complex.

The deployment of “missile defense” interceptors in Poland and the Star Wars radar in the Czech Republic, aimed at Russia, stand to create a new arms race in Europe. If Obama is willing to take that step then we are in big trouble for sure.

I’d strongly suggest that people who are concerned about this write the Obama transition team immediately and ask for clarification on his position. You can reach them at:


Don’t waste a minute. Letters from outside the U.S. to Obama on this subject are highly encouraged.


Planning For Cold War And Beyond + Full spectrum dominance


Who are the Architects of Economic Collapse? by Michel Chossudovsky

Dandelion Salad

by Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research, November 9, 2008

Will an Obama Administration Reverse the Tide?

Most Serious Economic Crisis in Modern History

The October 2008 financial meltdown is not the result of a cyclical economic phenomenon. It is the deliberate result of US government policy instrumented through the Treasury and the US Federal Reserve Board.

This is the most serious economic crisis in World history.

The “bailout” proposed by the US Treasury does not constitute a “solution” to the crisis. In fact quite the opposite: it is the cause of further collapse. It triggers an unprecedented concentration of wealth, which in turn contributes to widening economic and social inequalities both within and between nations.

The levels of indebtedness have skyrocketed. Industrial corporations are driven into bankruptcy, taken over by the global financial institutions. Credit, namely the supply of loanable funds, which constitutes the lifeline of production and investment, is controlled by a handful of financial conglomerates.

With the “bailout”, the public debt has spiraled. America is the most indebted country on earth. Prior to the “bailout”, the US public debt was of the order of 10 trillion dollars. This US dollar denominated debt is composed of outstanding treasury bills and government bonds held by individuals, foreign governments, corporations and financial institutions.

“The Bailout”: The US Administration is Financing its Own Indebtedness

Ironically, the Wall Street banks –which are the recipients of the bailout money– are also the brokers and underwriters of the US public debt. Although the banks hold only a portion of the public debt, they transact and trade in US dollar denominated public debt instruments Worldwide.

Continue reading

Space-Based Domestic Spying: Kicking Civil Liberties to the Curb by Tom Burghardt

Dandelion Salad

by Tom Burghardt
Global Research, November 9, 2008
Antifascist Calling

Last month, I reported that the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) space-based domestic spy program run by that agency’s National Applications Office (NAO) had gone live October 1.

Federal Computer Week reports that Charles Allen, DHS’ Undersecretary for Intelligence and Analysis, told the 5th annual GEOINT Symposium on geospatial intelligence in Nashville late last month that, “DHS’ imagery requirements are significantly greater, in number and scope, than they were at the department’s creation, and will continue to grow at an accelerating rate as the department’s mission-space evolves.”

Indeed during Hurricane Ike, U.S. Customs and Border Protection for the first time flew the Predator B unmanned aerial vehicle in “support of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s relief efforts,” the insider tech publication reported.

As readers are well aware, the Predator B carries out “targeted assassinations” of “terrorist suspects” across Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan. The deployment of the robotic killing machines in the United States for “disaster management” is troubling to say the least and a harbinger of things to come.

Despite objections by Congress and civil liberties groups DHS, in close collaboration with the ultra-spooky National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), the agency that develops and maintains America’s fleet of military spy satellites, and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) that analyzes military imagery and generates mapping tools, are proceeding with the first phase of the controversial domestic spying program.

NAO will coordinate how domestic law enforcement and “disaster relief” agencies such as FEMA will use satellite imagery intelligence (IMINT) generated by military spy satellites. As I wrote earlier this year, unlike commercial satellites, their military cousins are far more flexible, have greater resolution and therefore possess more power to monitor human activity.

Continue reading

One on One: Robert Fisk

Dandelion Salad


One on One – Robert Fisk – 07 Nov 08

In this episode of One on One, Riz Khan meets the veteran war correspondent and Middle East commentator.

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Robert Fisk: Endless War, Iraq and 9/11 (must-see video)


Obama’s Historic Victory By Howard Zinn

Dandelion Salad

By Howard Zinn
Information Clearinghouse
November 09, 2008

Those of us on the Left who have criticized Obama, as I have, for his failure to take bold positions on the war and on the economy, must join the exultation of those Americans, black and white, who shouted and wept Tuesday night as they were informed that Barack Obama had won the presidential election. It is truly a historic moment, that a black man will lead our country. The enthusiasm of the young, black and white, the hopes of their elders, cannot simply be ignored.

There was a similar moment a century and a half ago, in the year 1860, when Abraham Lincoln was elected president. Lincoln had been criticized harshly by the abolitionists, the anti-slavery movement, for his failure to take a clear, bold stand against slavery, for acting as a shrewd politician rather than a moral force. But when he was elected, the abolitionist leader Wendell Phillips, who had been an angry critic of Lincoln’s cautiousness, recognized the possibility in his election.

Phillips wrote that for the first time in the nation’s history “the slave has chosen a President of the United States.” Lincoln, he said, was not an abolitionist, but he in some way “consents to represent an antislavery position.” Like a pawn on the chessboard, Lincoln had the potential, if the American people acted vigorously, to be moved across the board, converted into a queen, and, as Phillips said, “sweep the board.”

Obama, like Lincoln, tends to look first at his political fortunes instead of making his decisions on moral grounds. But, as the first African American in the White House, elected by an enthusiastic citizenry which expects a decisive move towards peace and social justice, he presents a possibility for important change.

Obama becomes president in a situation which cries out for such change. The nation has been engaged in two futile and immoral wars, in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the American people have turned decisively against those wars. The economy is shaken by tremendous blows, and is in danger of collapsing, as families lose their homes and working people, including those in the middle class, lose their jobs, So the population is ready for change, indeed, desperate for change, and “change” was the word most used by Obama in his campaign.

What kind of change is needed? First, to announce the withdrawal of our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, and to renounce the Bush doctrine of preventive war as well as the Carter doctrine of military action to control Mideast oil. He needs to radically change the direction of U.S. foreign policy, declare that the U.S. is a peace loving country which will not intervene militarily in other parts of the world, and start dismantling the military bases we have in over a hundred countries. Also he must begin meeting with Medvedev, the Russian leader, to reach agreement on the dismantling of the nuclear arsenals, in keeping with the Nuclear Anti-Proliferation Treaty.

This turn-around from militarism will free hundreds of billions of dollars. A tax program which will sharply increase taxes on the richest 1% of the nation, and will tax their wealth as well as their income, will yield more hundreds of billions of dollars.

With all that saved money, the government will be able to give free health care to everyone, put millions of people to work (which the so-called free market has not been able to do). In short, emulate the New Deal program, in which millions were given jobs by the government. This is just an outline of a program which could transform the United States and make it a good neighbor to the world.

(written for l’Humanité in Paris)

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News Flash: Obama hypnotizes Zinn

America Has Already Changed by William Cox

Michael Ratner on Obama and civil liberties

Howard Zinn: Keep the Expectations High for Obama

Nader: Obama will be like Bush + Obama recruits “Rahmbo” Emanuel + Howard Zinn

Howard Zinn: War is no longer viable

Reflections on class and race in America by Barry Grey


End The FED: November 22, 2008

Dandelion Salad

Add DS on StopFascism.com: View my page on The Stop Fascism Action Network ~ Lo


They need your support! If you can not attend please donate to keep this movement going in the right direction.
Help, end the Federal Reserve.

For Details go to: http://www.endthefed.us

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The Federal Reserve Bank
is the Cause of our
Financial and Economic Crisis!

Rally to Support Sound Money for America!

Every Fed Bank. Every Fed Office.
Thirty-Nine Cities. One Purpose.


This is a public service announcement provided by the Stop Fascism Action Network ( SFAN ) Please join us at http://www.StopFascism.com

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How to Survive the Coming US Dollar Collapse By Christopher Laird

Can Obama Stop the Bush Admin’s Final Economic Heist? + The New Trough by Naomi Klein

Will the US default on its foreign debt? Interview with Michael Hudson

Federal Reserve

The Economy Sucks and or Collapse


America Has Already Changed by William Cox

by William Cox
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
November 9, 2008

Against all odds, American voters have elected a mixed-race, multi-cultural young man, who was born in modest circumstances, as their president to lead them through an economic and military crisis that threatens the future of their democracy.

Barack Obama campaigned on a platform of “Change”; however, the fact of his election proves that America has already changed.

I was born in my grandmother’s farmhouse in West Texas almost 68 years ago, and my father often said every American boy had a chance to be president, but I’m certain he never imagined the boy could be black. Continue reading

Obama will want more European soldiers to fight in Afghanistan + Indian Army officer arrested over bomb attack

compiled by Cem Ertür
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
9 November 2008

1) US gains extra sway over allies’ war effort

2) Barack Obama will want more European soldiers to fight in Afghanistan

3) Shock as top Indian Army officer arrested over bomb attack



excerpts from ‘US gains extra sway over allies’ war effort

by James Blitz, Financial Times, 7 November 2008

[N]ow that Mr Obama has been appointed, some European governments are waking up to an uncomfortable fact about the president-elect. It is that he will be in a much stronger position than George W. Bush has been in recent times to persuade European governments to make fresh commitments to the international effort in Afghanistan.

A senior diplomat from a European Union state agrees that this kind of pressure from the Obama White House is certain to be felt across the EU.

“There are lots of things the Bush administration has failed to get European governments to do, such as ending restrictions on how much danger their troops face in Afghanistan; or forcing the Europeans to give billions of dollars to pay for doubling the Afghan national army.

“But when Obama starts making these demands, European leaders will have to start thinking a lot harder. They won’t find it easy to turn down a man with this much appeal.”

Franco Frattini, the Italian foreign minister, acknowledged that point this week. “Europe, which is celebrating [the victory of] Obama, must know that Europe will be called on to be a producer of security and no longer merely a consumer. I think Obama will rightly call on us to take our responsibilities more seriously.”


excerpt from ‘Barack Obama will want more European soldiers to fight in Afghanistan

by Con Coughlin, Daily Telegraph, 7 November 2008

Mr Obama’s oft-repeated mantra of “change” may have succeeded in winning him the White House, but it is hardly likely to persuade al-Qaeda diehards to drop its diabolical plots to bomb the West, the Taliban to abandon its murderous campaign against Nato forces in Afghanistan, or Iran’s mullahs to desist from their illicit uranium-enrichment activities.

As Mr Obama will have discovered for himself yesterday following his detailed briefing from Mike Hayden, director of the CIA, on the current and active threats facing the security of the United States, the world, to quote David Miliband, the Foreign Secretary, is a scary place.



excerpt from ‘Shock as top Indian Army officer arrested over bomb attack

by Jeremy Page, Times, 8 November 2008

The Indian Army has been shocked by the arrest of a senior Military Intelligence officer on suspicion of involvement in a bomb attack by Hindu extremists in western India in September.

Colonel Srikant Prasad Purohit is the first serving officer in India’s Army ― seen as a bastion of secularism since the country’s independence in 1947 ― to be arrested on terrorism charges.

His detention is prompting calls for a ban on Hindu nationalist groups accused of stirring political violence, including recent attacks on Christians in eastern India, before national elections next year.

It may also force Indian authorities to investigate whether Hindu radicals were behind other recent bomb attacks, many of which have been blamed on Islamic extremists backed by Pakistan’s intelligence service.

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Ralph Nader’s Statement on the Truncated Quotation Used by Shepard Smith on Fox News

Dandelion Salad

Updated: here’s the transcript

by Ralph Nader
Ralph Nader for President in 2008
Nov. 7, 2008

Fox talk show host Shepard Smith repeated my question that was posed for Senator Barack Obama in an interview with Fox radio station KTRH Houston but deleted the last several words after giant corporations. The full question posed to Senator Obama that is his to answer in the coming months was as follows:

“He is our first African American president; or he will be. And we wish him well. But his choice, basically, is whether he’s going to be Uncle Sam for the people of this country, or Uncle Tom for the giant corporations who are running America into the ground.”

Click this Hipcast link for audio of the entire interview.

Anyone who has worked in the areas of civil rights, economic justice, and health and safety over the decades knows that whenever minority candidates are elected to legislative offices, their minority constituents remain wary regarding whether the entrenched power structures are affecting these self-avowed representatives, or whether the reverse is occurring – that is, they are standing up to the corporate supremacists. All political pioneers have to answer this question as they move into these positions of trust. Unfortunately, as many people of color – struggling through the day in often desperate circumstances – know from the lessons of history, there are more than a few times when they are let down by a surrender to the rich and powerful – an obeisance that has its vernacular. Let us all hope that this will not happen. Tens of millions of Americans await what actually does happen. Everyone, as alert citizens, should strive to make sure that courses of action are taken that put people first and finally make corporations our servants and not our masters.


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Reflections on class and race in America by Barry Grey

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The Economy Sucks and or Collapse


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