The United States has produced several mythic historical figures – Paul Bunyan, John Henry and the like – but our actual prophetic peace activists are actually far more interesting. People like Eugene Victor Debs, Emma Goldman, and in our present day, Cindy Sheehan.
Myth America: 10 Greatest Myths of the Robber Class and the Case for Revolution places Sheehan firmly in the pantheon of progressive heroes. Myth America is an online book by Sheehan geared towards destroying the military industrial and security industrial complex that killed her son Casey in the corrupt war in Iraq.
Sheehan is calling for re-localization and the uncoupling of the “robbed class” from the war profiteers and new high-tech robber barons that are flourishing under globalization. The beauty of Sheehan’s work, directly echoing the speeches and writings of Debs, is its sheer bluntness.
The Central Intelligence Agency withheld information about a secret counterterrorism program from Congress for eight years on direct orders from former Vice President Dick Cheney, the agency’s director, Leon E. Panetta, has told the Senate and House intelligence committees, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said Saturday.
The disclosure about Mr. Cheney’s role in the unidentified C.I.A. program comes a day after an inspector general’s report underscored the central role of the former vice president’s office in restricting to a small circle of officials knowledge of the National Security Agency’s program of eavesdropping without warrants, a degree of secrecy that the report concluded had hurt the effectiveness of the counterterrorism surveillance effort.
The Federal Reserve is one of the most powerful and secretive institutions in Washington, long considered beyond the reach of lawmakers. But now, as details emerge of how the Fed secretly doled out more than a trillion dollars during the financial crisis, a rare bipartisan movement in Congress demands that the Fed be held accountable.
On Wednesday, I reported how Retired Rear Admiral John D. Hutson, the former Judge Advocate General of the US Navy from 1997 to 2000, had delivered compelling testimony to a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on “legal issues regarding military commissions and the trial of detainees for violations of the law of war,” explaining why the only valid forum for trials of suspected terrorists at Guantánamo Bay is the US federal court system.
The lucidity and directness of Hutson’s testimony was in marked contrast to the amendments to the existing Military Commission system — and terrifying asides about the use of “preventive detention” — that were proposed by Jeh Johnson, the Defense Department’s General Counsel, and David Kris, the Assistant Attorney General in the Justice Department’s National Security Division, in response to legislation already prepared by the Committee, which, it seems, will be presented to the Senate in the imminent future, even though it still allows (subject to certain restrictions) the use of information — I hesitate to use the word “evidence” — obtained through coercion, and other information that is nothing more than hearsay.
Every one of us has their own “take” on what is happening in this brave new world. I am no different than most, I also have an opinion on what’s going on. When I write an article I usually have no problem giving my opinion as to what is really happening. This time however, I’m going to try not to give my opinion. I only want to present the facts as I understand them. The truth is much more damning than any opinion I could offer, as Sgt Joe Friday once said in Dragnet, an old TV police show; “Just the facts Ma’am, just the facts”.
Let’s start with the two political parties that supposedly “run” this country. The truth is that political parties don’t run this country, money does. Our entire political system is based on wealth. This has been true in some degree since the day we gained our independence, but it has never been as apparent as it is now. Money drives political campaigns. All the politicos know this and so do most people. Senators Russ Feingold and John McCain tried to reform the way that political campaigns were financed, but by the time the reforms were passed by Congress, the politicians and lobbyists had gutted the bill, making it so weak that it was too little, too late.
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Report Also Indicates White House Politicized “Threat Assessments” That Provided Foundation For Illegal Program
A report released today by several government agencies’ Inspectors General concludes that little, if any, useful information was collected by the Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program and the National Intelligence Agency (NSA). The report also indicates that the Bush White House politicized the “threat assessments” that it then relied upon as a foundation for the illegal program. Detailed findings of the report are listed below.
The report was mandated by the 2008 FISA Amendments Act (FAA) that effectively legalized the unlawful warrantless surveillance program approved by President Bush in late 2001. The FAA also gave the government new spying powers, including the power to conduct dragnet surveillance of Americans’ international communications. News reports have since indicated that the NSA has exceeded the already overbroad limits granted to it under the FAA.