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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 51,743

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Case Filed in European Court Against Bush-Era Torture

Case Filed in European Court Against Bush-Era Torture

The European Centre for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR) files case against Bush Administration officials for running a state organized program of torture authorized at the highest levels, says Michael Ratner, chair of ECCHR - December 19, 2014


Fallout continues from the Senate CIA torture report and the unwillingness of the Obama administration to hold anyone accountable for their torturing. On Wednesday, the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights filed a criminal complaint in Germany against former CIA had George Tenet, former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld, and other members of the Bush administration for their roles in torture.


PERIES: Michael, since President Obama is not bringing about charges and the Senate Intelligence Committee did not recommend charging the torturers, the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights decided that they needed to take some action. Tell us more.

RATNER: You know, the torture report which came out, and, of course, a lot of evidence we had before, really screamed that people have to be investigated and prosecuted for torture. It's completely clear. The Obama administration is not really doing anything. Obama has said, let's look forward, not backward, etc. I think we all know that story. This country isn't about to do a thing.

But it's a very different situation in Europe. For a number of years, we've tried to bring cases in Europe, but now, in light of the torture report, I think we have a much, much better chance. And already the fact that we've brought some cases are having a major effect, which is one of the effects we want, on people from the CIA.

I understand from a lawyer I work with, Scott Horton, who is also a columnist at Harper's, that over 100 CIA agents have already been warned by the lawyers for the agency that they should not leave the United States, certainly not go to Europe, because they could be arrested and prosecuted for torture. That's already pretty remarkable considering how reluctant this country has been to hold accountable its own torturers.


Obama is Finally Free

“Obama’s turnaround in recent weeks – he’s seized the offensive with a series of controversial executive actions and challenges to leaders in his own party on the budget — can be attributed to a fundamental change in his political mindset, according to current and former aides. He’s gone from thinking of himself as a sitting (lame) duck, they tell me, to a president diving headlong into what amounts to a final campaign – this one to preserve his legacy, add policy points to the scoreboard, and – last but definitely not least – to inflict the same kind of punishment on his newly empowered Republican enemies, who delighted in tormenting him when he was on top.”


Obama Praises LeBron James For Wearing 'I Can't Breathe' Protest Shirt

President Barack Obama applauded basketball star LeBron James for wearing an "I Can't Breathe" protest T-shirt before a game last week.

"You know, I think LeBron did the right thing," Obama told People magazine in an interview published Friday. "We forget the role that Muhammad Ali, Arthur Ashe and Bill Russell played in raising consciousness."


But the President told People that he'd like to see more athletes speak out on social and other issues the way James did.

"We went through a long stretch there where well-paid athletes the notion was: just be quiet and get your endorsements and don't make waves," he said. "LeBron is an example of a young man who has, in his own way and in a respectful way, tried to say, 'I'm part of this society, too' and focus attention."


If Torture Was Categorically Wrong When Hitler Did It, Then Why Is the CIA Excused When They Do It?

We knew it was wrong when Hitler did it—but when Dick Cheney committed the same heinous crimes—it’s excused by the corporate network media pundits.


I would like to ask the corporate network media defenders of the Bush-Cheney administration if they believe that the techniques of torture committed by the S.S. paramilitary organization under Adolf Hitler should be discussed as a “controversial” and “debatable” issue? That is to say, if Hitler defended his S.S. torture operations in the name of “national security” would that make torture under Nazi Germany justifiable? If the answer is “no” then when the CIA commits the same heinous crimes of torture, why is that up for debate? If they agree that it is plainly wrong when Hitler did it—then why is it excusable when the CIA does it?

Ironically, we were told by the Bush administration that Saddam Hussein “had to go” because he “tortured his people.” Once again, I must raise the question: if the US media condemned Saddam Hussein for torturing or executing those whom he believed were traitors, if it was wrong when Saddam Hussein did it, then why is it acceptable when the CIA does the exact same thing? And if that’s the standard-justification that the Bush administration used to hang Saddam Hussein, then the same standard should also be used for every member of the Bush administration and the CIA torturers as well as the lawyers who attempted to make the gruesome act of torture—legal.


We knew it was wrong when Hitler did it. Categorically wrong. There was no debate about it. It was wrong. Period. It was so wrong that it led to the signing of the Geneva Conventions that made it exceedingly clear to world leaders that the brutal, insane practice of torture is illegal, immoral and a crime against humanity.


It was wrong when the Romans did it, it was wrong when the Church did it, it was wrong when the Nazis did it and it is wrong when the CIA does it.


Dog Shoots Man

Dog Shoots Man: Accidental Shooting Injures Man
Date Posted: December 18, 2014

SHERIDAN — The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office has released its findings on the shooting of a man Monday on Murphy Gulch Road.

Sheriff Steve Kozisek said Richard L. Fipps, 46, of Sheridan had driven to Murphy Gulch Road with two employees to move a vehicle that had become stuck. Fipps was standing beside his truck as chains were being removed from the front of it when he was shot.

Kozisek said Fipps told a dog in the front seat of the truck to get into the back seat. Among other personal items laying on the back seat was a .300 Winchester Magnum with the safety apparently turned off. The dog managed to discharge the weapon, which fired through the cab of the truck.

The round struck Fipps in the left arm, traveled past his back and clipped his right sleeve without touching his right arm.

- See more at: http://thesheridanpress.com/?p=29004#sthash.yEvJquVd.dpuf

Marco Rubio says Pope Francis isn’t for “freedom”

Rubio expressed his rather lengthy scolding of the Catholic pontiff today after President Obama revealed a Pope-brokered plan for the United States to resume diplomatic relations with Cuba.

“I would also ask His Holiness to take up the cause of freedom and democracy, which is critical for a free people — for a people to truly be free,” Rubio told reporters, according to TPM.

“I think the people of Cuba deserve the same chances to have democracy as the people of Argentina have had, where he comes from; as the people of Italy have, where he now lives. Obviously the Vatican’s its own state, but very nearby. My point is I hope that people with that sort of prestige on the world stage will take up the cause of freedom and democracy.”

(But this is my favorite part of the article):

While growing up initially Catholic, Rubio then became a Mormon, then switched back to Catholicism, then became a Southern Baptist and a Catholic, then left the Baptists and simply became a Catholic, then he became a Baptist again, then a Catholic again, all the while technically remaining a Mormon.


Let It Go, Let It Go

"Made In China"

‘This Is Barack Obama, Formerly Of Somerville’

‘This Is Barack Obama, Formerly Of Somerville’

December 18, 2014By Taegan Goddard4 Comments
Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) got a surprise caller on his monthly WGBH radio show:

Jim Braude: “Hello, sir. Yes, you’re on with Gov. Deval Patrick.”

Barack Obama: “Uh, Governor, this is Barack Obama, formerly of Somerville. I’ve got a few complaints about service in and around the neighborhood, but I’ve moved down South since that time…”

Deval Patrick: “You’re kidding, Mr. President. Who is this impersonator? You’re very good. Who is this really?”

Barack Obama: “I want to find out how it is that you got Massachusetts so strong and moving in the right direction.”


LOL - "America Smokes A Cuban"

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