As I type this, leaders from the biggest industrialized nations are meeting in Copenhagen to discuss a possible treaty to diminish worldwide carbon emissions. As reported last month, it is already known that no deal will be reached during these talks. Many scientists say time is running out and others say its too late. Meanwhile in Canada, the forces of capitalism and industry are moving full force to extract the last bits of oil from the Alberta tar sands. The insanity of this project perfectly exemplifies Premise 10 from Derrick Jensen’s Endgame.
In the first detailed announcement about prisoners cleared for release from Guantánamo since September 28, when a military spokesman announced that a list of 78 cleared prisoners had been posted in the prison, defense secretary Robert Gates told a Senate hearing last Thursday that officials were “in the process of identifying detainees that we believe can be transferred to other countries” and “we’ve identified I think 116 at this point.”
This is certainly progress on the part of the administration, as it continues to work out how to close Guantánamo. Since the last announcement, senior officials have also made decisions about who to put forward for trial, announcing on November 13 that five men — including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed — will face federal court trials for their alleged involvement in the 9/11 attacks, and another five will be put forward for trial by Military Commission. Officials also briefed journalists that the number of prisoners expected to face any kind of trial would not exceed 40.
This one being the night question that hit me a couple of days ago. There aren’t that many times in my life I’ve woken up in the middle of the night from a good night’s sleep wide knocked wide awake with some great realization, but it happened to me a couple of nights ago. Lets put it on paper and get it out there and maybe somebody can answer it.
Out at UT two years ago I did some knocking on doors on behalf of the journalist and Latin Americanist John Ross, who writes regularly for CounterPunch. John let out in CP that he was traveling through the US, gave his itinerary, and urged his readers to contact local colleges and universities along his route to get him in for some guest lecturing. I went off to UT, and talked to seven departments sum total, putting on the best sales pitch I could to the department chairs’ secretaries, a couple of the department chairs themselves–Government, History, Spanish, Latin American Studies, the LBJ School of Public Affairs, Sociology, and ROTC. Mostly I got listened to politely and it was obvious that nobody was interested in doing anything to get word out to the professors and TA’s about this opportunity, and I most seriously doubt any efforts in that direction were ever made by anyone. Hell, with the web, Ross’ work is easily available and it is eyepoke obvious reading it that anyone who writes that entertaingly well is going to enthrall a classful of bored undergraduates. Zero contact back from UT to Ross or me–absolutely dead issue.
The real face of our two-party but one-establishment system of politics seems to have made a rare appearance again with Obama’s speech last Tuesday. That is, to those among the wannabe gullible majority, since a small fraction have known this true face for a while. The good news is that finally we are seeing a significant number of apologists who are coming to the realization of being taken for a ride during this last election. The not so good news has to do with the depth of this new realization, thus the extreme vulnerability of being misdirected and exploited again, over and over, as has been done for decades.
Last May I put forth a discussion topic on the issue of casting votes based on the ‘lesser of two evils’ decision-making process. Here are the questions I posed back then, which I am posing again now that we have more people waking up to smell their new Whitehouse Roses: Continue reading →
In a disgraceful example of bullying and intimidation, Marc Falkoff, a law professor at Northern Illinois University College of Law, who has been a lawyer for 16 Guantánamo prisoners since 2004, was forced to call off a talk about Guantánamo at a college in Illinois last week after receiving threats of violence to himself and his family. In Sunday’s Northwest Herald (“Local news and video for McHenry County, Illinois), Professor Falkoff wrote a guest column explaining what he would have said had the event not been called off, which I reproduce below, as it is not only a ringing endorsement of the right to free speech, but also a concise explanation of why it remains important for those who see beyond the Bush administration’s rhetoric about Guantánamo — that it holds “the worst of the worst” — to be able to discuss the many reasons that this claim is a blatant lie.
Now that the conspiracy theorists have blown off steam, it’s time for a more sober analysis of those e-mails and what they mean. I can’t go through all of them, there are far too many, and . So I’ve taken the two that seem to be getting conspiracy theorists most worked up — Phil Jones’s e-mail about “Mike’s Nature trick” and Kevin Trenberth’s e-mail about a “travesty.” I’m glad to see that skeptic websites that cover the science understand what these e-mails actually mean. As you’ll see, very few commentators who jumped on the conspiracy bandwagon even before reading the e-mails mandged to get it right.
Liberals are a useless lot. They talk about peace and do nothing to challenge our permanent war economy. They claim to support the working class, and vote for candidates that glibly defend the North American Free Trade Agreement. They insist they believe in welfare, the right to organize, universal health care and a host of other socially progressive causes, and will not risk stepping out of the mainstream to fight for them. The only talent they seem to possess is the ability to write abject, cloying letters to Barack Obama—as if he reads them—asking the president to come back to his “true” self. This sterile moral posturing, which is not only useless but humiliating, has made America’s liberal class an object of public derision.
Honduran coup regime’s claims about 60% turnout at free and fair elections is revealed as fraud. Also implicated in the video are the wide array of media outlets and governments that have unquestioningly accepted the electoral data of a regime that overthrew the last elected president.
Produced by Jesse Freeston, on location in Honduras.
A couple of years ago, Dyer noticed that the military in various countries, especially in the Pentagon, were beginning to take climate change and the idea that global warming could lead to wars, seriously.