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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 43,861

Journal Archives

USA Go Home: ‘Moderate’ Syrian Rebels Now Opposing US Airstrikes In Syria

‘Moderate’ Syrian Rebels Now Opposing US Airstrikes In Syria
By: DSWright Thursday October 2, 2014 5:54 am

Richard Engel ✔ @RichardEngel
Syrian activists telling us theyve never heard of Khorasan or its leader
10:32 AM - 24 Sep 2014

In an ironic twist to the ongoing and controversial US bombing campaign in Syria, the so-called “moderate” Syrian rebels are telling the Western media that they too oppose US airstrikes in Syria and think the campaign will do more harm than good for their cause. The US-led bombing campaign recently hit grain silos and killed food workers making a bad situation worse and reminding many that US intervention in the Middle East rarely leads to anything other than increased suffering for everyone.

Now members of the Free Syrian Army have told Foreign Policy that they want Washington to send its planes back home.
Fighters and commanders in the FSA told FP that the US airstrikes were just providing political capital for ISIS and other Islamic groups that opposed the moderate rebels. ISIS could point to strikes on civilians as evidence that the US was a wicked power and that ISIS’ jihad was just. The FSA rebels also feared the airstrikes would strengthen the Assad government.

America’s most plausible allies on the ground in Deir Ezzor, however, remain critical of the international effort. Foreign Policy interviewed six FSA commanders from the province who are currently exiled by the Islamic State and hiding out in southeastern Turkey. All of them were arrested at some point by the jihadist group; some were tortured. They all agree that the U.S. airstrikes in their home country are a bad idea.

FSA fighters and commanders complained to Foreign Policy that they have received no increase in support since the international effort to combat the Islamic State began, despite promises from the Obama administration that the United States would begin supplying arms to the rebels. The FSA fighters also disparaged the airstrikes, saying they would mainly kill civilians and give the Assad regime a chance to gain ground.


Does anyone outside the White House support these airstrikes at this point? Given that ISIS is active in such a large area it is going to be pretty hard to “degrade and destroy” them without taking a lot of civilians with them. In other words, even if the air campaign is successful it’s going to create a lot of enemies and radicals.


Secret Service Agent Leaked Obama's Campaign Schedule

Secret Service Agent Leaked Obama's Campaign Schedule

"As scandal continues to envelop the Secret Service, InsideSources has learned of a security failure leading up to the 2012 election. Multiple sources inside the Romney presidential campaign confirm that a Secret Service agent provided details of President Obama's schedule several days prior to the President's campaign stops becoming public."


same old, same old....

This Country Just Abolished College Tuition Fees

Prospective students in the United States who can’t afford to pay for college or don’t want to rack up tens of thousands in student debt should try their luck in Germany. Higher education is now free throughout the country, even for international students. Yesterday, Lower Saxony became the last of seven German states to abolish tuition fees, which were already extremely low compared to those paid in the United States.

German universities only began charging for tuition in 2006, when the German Constitutional Court ruled that limited fees, combined with loans, were not in conflict the country’s commitment to universal education. The measure proved unpopular, however, and German states that had instituted fees began dropping them one by one.

“We got rid of tuition fees because we do not want higher education which depends on the wealth of the parents,” Gabrielle Heinen-Kjajic, the minister for science and culture in Lower Saxony, said in a statement. Her words were echoed by many in the German government. “Tuition fees are unjust,” said Hamburg’s senator for science Dorothee Stapelfeldt. “They discourage young people who do not have a traditional academic family background from taking up study. It is a core task of politics to ensure that young women and men can study with a high quality standard free of charge in Germany.”

Compared to American students, Germans barely had to pay for undergraduate study even before tuition fees were abolished. Semester fees averaged around €500 ($630) and students were entitled to many perks, such as cheap (often free) transportation within and between cities.


How Corporate Executives Are Purchasing Our States—One Governership at a Time

AlterNet / By Jim Hightower

How Corporate Executives Are Purchasing Our States—One Governership at a Time
Corporations are secretly funneling millions into the "dark money" vault of the RGA.


........oops! -- the RGA made a coding error in its database of dark money donors. So in September, a mess of the GOP's secret-money corporations were suddenly exposed, standing buck-naked in front of customers, employees, stockholders and others who were startled and angered to learn that the companies they supported were working against their interests.

A lifelong champion of political money reform, Fred Wertheimer, put it this way: "This is a classic example of how corporations are trying to use secret money hidden from the American people to buy influence, and how the Governors Association is selling it,"

Feed the RGA's political-favor-meter with $250,000 a year (as Coca-Cola, the Koch brothers, and others do), and the association cynically anoints your corporation with the ironic title of "Statesman," opening up gubernatorial doors throughout the country. Well, sniff the participants, the money buys nothing but "access" to policymakers. But wait -- when was that access put on the auction block? Shouldn't everyone have access to our public officials? Of course, but call your governor and see if you can even get an office intern to call back.


Now let's call the roll of some of the privileged corporate dreamers that were pulling the wool over our eyes, hoping we would slumber in ignorance: Aetna, Aflac, Blue Cross, Coca-Cola, Comcast, Exxon Mobil, Hewlett-Packard, Koch Industries, Microsoft, Novartis, Pfizer, Shell Oil, United Health, Verizon, Walgreens and Wal-Mart.

the rest:

SURVIVAL OF THE RICHEST---Mother Jones: How The Recovery Left Most Americans Behind

We're still posting a new chart on the current state of income inequality every day over the next week. Yesterday's looked at how the top 1 percent of Americans have captured half of all income.

Today, let's talk taxes. In the past few years, we've heard a lot about overtaxed "job creators" and freeloading "takers." But consider this: As the income rates for the wealthiest have plunged, their incomes have shot up.


That's from a week-long series at Mother Jones about the effects of income inequality.

I thought this one was particularly interesting:

That proverbial rising tide is really a giant wave. The wealthy are comfortably riding it on their multi-million dollar yachts while the rest of us are strapped to the keel. Sure, you could say we rise with that wave too but we're still under the water.


Woohoo!! Got my KOCH Funded Voter Registration Mailer Ripe with all the Mistakes---Plus Pics

TUE SEP 30, 2014 AT 03:27 PM PDT
Woohoo!! Got my KOCH Funded Voter Registration Mailer Ripe with all the Mistakes : Plus Pics
by wbkook

Front of Americans for Prosperity North Carolina voter registraion Woohooo!!! Got my Voter Registration in the mail! Thanks Americans for Prosperity!! (Koch funded) Only a couple of problems. 1) I have been registered to vote since I was 18. 2) The form was addressed to me at my parents house (which I haven't lived at in over 25 years) and 3) its full of misinformation.

So I figured I would take a few pics to show the errors

1) the due date for registration is 25 days before the election not 30 as it states in the section on the top half of the mailer.


2) It then states again later on down the mailer that the registration due date IS 25 days before the election. (which is correct, but confusing because of whats in bolder print in the above)


3) If you have any questions about voter registration please do not contact the Secretary of States office as thats not who is in charge of voter registration


4) I find this one most despicable is the paid for envelope in the mailer, sends the registration to the Board of Elections in Raleigh. If you want to be registered to vote you do not send your registration to Raleigh, you send it to your county Board. Also the zip code is wrong on the envelope.....


read more at:

Jon Stewart hammers ‘fat motherf*ckers’ in Congress with ‘Schoolhouse Rock’ update


In light of Congress’ turn toward the “childish and cynical,” Daily Show host Jon Stewart said on Tuesday, the classic Schoolhouse Rock song “I’m Just A Bill” needed an update.

“I’m just holding my d*ck as I sit here and wait, while these fat motherf*ckers hold a phony debate,” the titular Bill laments in the new version. “I can’t take it anymore, I’m done, I’ll buy a gun and my brains I will spill on the steps of Capital Hill.”

Stewart pointed out that, instead of actually trying to pass legislation, Republicans and Democrats are locked in a game of one-upmanship: Democrats will advance hopeless proposals in order to use the bills as fodder for election attack ads against the GOP, while Republicans run out the clock on the legislative calendar so that they can avoid voting on “volatile” issues before the elections.

“Democrats and Republicans are on a bad date,” Stewart explained. “Democrats know the Republicans don’t want to be there. And Republicans know that the Democrats know that Republicans don’t want to be there. So in their cynicism, the Democrats have asked, ‘Wanna see the dessert menu?’ And out of spite, the Republicans have said, ‘Bring over the whole f*cking cart. And the espresso machine, ’cause I can do this all night long. You know what? We’re not gonna have sex, but I’m gonna make sure you’re don’t get to f*ck anybody else here.’”

As a result, he said, this Congress is on pace to be the least-productive in history.


People Have The Power!

if only we realized this........


ROLLING STONE: Koch Brothers call our story "dishonest and misleading."---A point-by-point rebuttal.

Koch Industries Responds to Rolling Stone – And We Answer Back

"Koch Facts" calls our story "dishonest and misleading." A point-by-point rebuttal.

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/koch-industries-responds-to-rolling-stone-and-we-answer-back-20140929#ixzz3EttQcd9f
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

Koch, in particular, takes umbrage with my reporting practices.

For the record: In the weeks prior to publication, beginning September 4th, Rolling Stone attempted to engage Koch Industries in a robust discussion of the issues raised in our reporting. Rolling Stone requested to interview CEO Charles Koch about his company's philosophy of Market Based Management; Ilia Bouchouev, who heads Koch's derivatives trading operations, about the company's trading practices; and top Koch lawyer Mark Holden about the company's significant legal and regulatory history.

The requests to speak to Charles Koch and Bouchouev were simply ignored. Ultimately, only Holden responded on the record, only via e-mail and only after Holden baselessly insinuated that I had been given an "opposition research" document dump from the liberal activist David Brock. (This is false.) From my perspective as a reporter, Koch Industries is the most hostile and paranoid organization I've ever engaged with—and I've reported on Fox News. In a breach of ethics, Koch has also chosen to publish email correspondence characterizing the content of a telephone conversation that was, by Koch's own insistence, strictly off the record.

In the main, the Koch responses attempt to re-litigate closed cases — incidents where judges, juries, and, in one case, a Senate Select Committee, have already had a final say. They only muddy waters that have been clarified by a considered legal process.


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