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Gender: Male
Current location: Potlandia
Member since: Fri Sep 28, 2007, 04:39 PM
Number of posts: 11,996

Journal Archives

Obama Says ISIS was Caused by Our 2003 Invasion, "Which is why America should aim before it shoots."

Barack Obama places the blame for the swift rise of Isis at George W. Bush's feet by suggesting its growth was an unintended consequence of... the US invasion of Iraq. The US President made the comments as he spoke with Vice News about a number of issues currently affecting America.

Isis began its rapid and bloody advance across Iraq last year, taking over swathes of the country and territories in Syria, later declaring a ‘caliphate’ across areas under its control. The extremist group has committed a number of atrocities in these areas, including mass beheadings, public executions and the kidnapping of women from minority groups who were sold into sexual slavery.

Mr Obama said: "Two things: one is, Isis is a direct outgrowth of al-Qaeda in Iraq that grew out of our invasion. Which is an example of unintended consequences. Which is why we should generally aim before we shoot." - See more at:

See source article + a VIDEO HERE: http://upriser.com/posts/obama-isis-unintended-consequence-of-invading-iraq-which-is-why-we-should-aim-before-we-shoot#sthash.kerShLDr.dpuf

Anyone think the CIA/Bush Crime Family is NOT cheerleading Obamas saber-rattling at Venezuela?

You need to see this 72 minute documentary of the CIA/Bush Crime Family's 2002 coup attempt in Venezuela, and how it dramatically back-fired because THE PEOPLE of Venezuela literally rose up, by the 100s of thousands, surrounding the Presidential Palace, demanding that their democratically elected President Hugo Chavez be restored to power.

This is an excellent film in its own right, an award-winning documentary by a Dutch film crew who just happened to be already on the scene, as the coup unfolded, and were allowed to keep their cameras rolling through the entire incident, until Chavez was reinstated as President. An amazing historical piece of film work.

MoJo: US Weapons Have a Nasty Habit of Going AWOL

US Weapons Have a Nasty Habit of Going AWOL
From Afghanistan to Yemen, a short history of American arms ending up in the wrong hands.
By AJ Vicens * Maarch 18, 2015 * Mother Jones

On Tuesday, the Washington Post reported that the Pentagon can't say what happened to more than $500 million worth of gear—including "small arms, ammunition, night-vision goggles, patrol boats, vehicles and other supplies"—it had given to the Yemeni government. The news comes as Al Qaeda and Iranian-backed groups vie to control the country following the collapse of the country's US-backed regime in January. The Post noted that the Pentagon has stopped further shipments of aid, but the damage has been done. "We have to assume it's completely compromised and gone," an anonymous legislative aide said.

This isn't the first time US military aid to allies has gone AWOL or wound up in the wrong hands. A few notable examples:

Libya: In late 2012, the New York Times reported that weapons from a US-approved deal had eventually gone to Islamic militants in Libya. The deal, which involved European weapons sent to Qatar as well as US weapons originally supplied to the United Arab Emirates, had been managed from the sidelines by the Obama administration.

Syria: More than once, American arms intended to help bolster the fight against ISIS in Syria and northern Iraq have ended up in the group's control. Last October, an airdrop of small arms was blown off target by the wind, according to the Guardian. ISIS quickly posted a video of its fighters going through crates of weapons attached to a parachute.

Iraq: American weapons supplied to the Iraqi army have also found their way ISIS via theft and capture. And weapons meant for the Iraqi army have also gone to Shiite militias backed by Iran. This isn't a new problem: As much as 30 percent of the weapons the United States distributed to Iraqi forces between 2004 and early 2007 could not be accounted for.

Afghanistan: It's been widely documented that American forces invading Afghanistan in the wake of 9/11 had to face off against weapons the United States had once supplied to mujahideen fighters battling the Soviets in the '80

MORE: Somalia

Why Can’t (Portland) One of America’s Most ‘Progressive’ Cities Reform Its Police Force?

As a Portlander, I take this news especially hard. Damn, we're better than that.

Or at least I thought we were.

~~~~ * ~~~~ * ~~~~ * ~~~~ * ~~~~ * ~~~~ * ~~~~ * ~~~~ *

Why Can’t One of America’s Most ‘Progressive’ Cities Reform Its Police Force?
Zoë Carpenter * March 16, 2015 * The Nation

It was just after midnight on a September Sunday when several police officers, responding to reports of property damage, approached a small group of young black men walking down a street in north Portland, Oregon. Among them was 16-year-old Thai Gurule, a football player at Roosevelt High School, and his older brother Giovanni. Officers ordered Thai to stop. He kept walking.

Within minutes Thai would be tackled by several officers, forced to the ground, tased and handcuffed. Later, despite a judge’s ruling that the initial stop was illegal, he’d face charges of resisting arrest, assaulting a public safety officer and attempted strangulation. Giovanni would face similar, though less serious, charges. The Portland Police Bureau worked quickly to defend their officers, releasing a statement that explained that the Gurule brothers were “very hostile,” and that Thai demonstrated “active aggression, including his choking the female officer.”

Cell phone videos captured a different scene: Thai, slight of body, standing still between two officers. “Can I ask you a question?” Giovanni can be heard saying. “What did my little brother do? He don’t do nothing. He plays football for Roosevelt, come on now. He don’t drink. He don’t smoke.” Suddenly, the officers pull Thai towards the ground. His white hat falls off, and he reaches for it through the scrum. Officers bark orders, and bystanders shout: “Stop pulling his hair!” “Why are you punching him?” “That’s illegal!” “What’s the problem that he caused?” “Fucking pigs!” When they tase him, Thai begins to gasp, his high-pitched keening overlaid by the hoarser, panicked protests coming from his older brother.

Less than a month earlier, the Portland Police Bureau had reached a “groundbreaking” agreement with the Department of Justice to settle a case stemming from repeated incidences of police violence. There was the schizophrenic who was beaten to death by officers; the suicidal young black man who was shot in the back after concerned relatives called the police; another young man in a mental health crisis who was shot to death after cops pulled him over for driving “like a gangster.” The deal, as described by the DOJ, will put in place “innovative new mechanisms” for community oversight and requires reforms to training and use-of-force guidelines.


Wikipedia Edits To Pages On New York Police Killings Traced To NYPD Headquarters

'Out, damned spot! out, I say!'

Wikipedia Edits To Pages On New York Police Killings Traced To NYPD Headquarters: Report
The Huffington Post * By Simon McCormack * HuffPost

Revisions to Wikipedia entries about black men killed by New York City police officials came from computers in the department's headquarters, a new report reveals.

Users at 1 Police Plaza edited articles on Eric Garner, Sean Bell, Amadou Diallo, and other police controversies in what appears to be an attempt to downplay police accountability in each incident, according to Capital New York.

Capital traced the edits using Internet Protocol addresses, or IP addresses, linked to 1 Police Plaza, the NYPD's headquarters. Over the last decade, Capital found hundreds of edits by users at the NYPD headquarters, "many of which had nothing to do with police issues."

In one example, hours after a grand jury declined to indict Daniel Pantaleo in the chokehold death of Garner, a user at 1 Police Plaza made these edits:

● “Garner raised both his arms in the air” was changed to “Garner flailed his arms about as he spoke.”
● “Push Garner's face into the sidewalk” was changed to “push Garner's head down into the sidewalk.”
● “Use of the chokehold has been prohibited” was changed to “Use of the chokehold is legal, but has been prohibited.”
● The sentence, “Garner, who was considerably larger than any of the officers, continued to struggle with them,” was added to the description of the incident.
● Instances of the word “chokehold” were replaced twice, once to “chokehold or headlock,” and once to “respiratory distress.”


DEA Agent Speaks Out: We Were Told Not to Enforce Drug Laws In Rich Communities

DEA Agent Speaks Out: We Were Told Not to Enforce Drug Laws In Rich Communities
By John Vibes * March 10, 2015 * Free Thought Project

“‘You know, if we go out there and start messing with those folks, they know judges, they know lawyers, they know politicians. You start locking their kids up; somebody’s going to jerk our chain.’ He said, ‘they’re going to call us on it, and before you know it, they’re going to shut us down, and there goes your overtime.'”

Washington DC – As the lies that keep the drug war alive begin to come unglued, many of the police officers and government agents who made it possible are now going public with the truth of their experience.

Matthew Fogg, a former US Marshal, and DEA agent is one of those people. Ever since leaving law enforcement he has been speaking out against police brutality, profiling, and the drug war. Fogg appeared in an interview for Brave New Films, where he discussed the drug war and how race and class play a part the enforcement of drug laws.

In the interview, Fogg said,

“We were jumping on guys in the middle of the night, all of that. Swooping down on folks all across the country, using these sorts of attack tactics that we went out on, that you would use in Vietnam, or some kind of war-torn zone. All of the stuff that we were doing, just calling it the war on drugs. And there wasn’t very many black guys in my position.

So when I would go into the war room, where we were setting up all of our drug and gun and addiction task force determining what cities we were going to hit, I would notice that most of the time it always appeared to be urban areas."

Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.com/dea-agent-drug-laws-intentionally-rich-communities/#mJYDHQ4bF220FKdr.99

Atlanta-area police shoot dead unarmed and naked African American man

Atlanta-area police shoot dead unarmed and naked African American man
*Dekalb County police say Anthony Hill, 27, was ‘acting deranged’
*Police chief says the man ran at an officer before he was shot dead

Tuesday 10 March 2015 * Jessica Glenza * The Guardian

The Georgia bureau of investigation has opened an inquiry into the police shooting of a naked, unarmed and possibly mentally ill man on Monday in DeKalb County.

Anthony Hill, 27, was shot by a police officer at The Heights apartment complex where he lived, just east of Atlanta. Police arrived and encountered Hill after a 911 caller reported a nude man wandering the complex and “acting deranged”, at about 1pm on Monday, according to DeKalb County police.

A seven-year veteran of the county police force responded to the call. Hill, who was black, reportedly ran at the officer who ordered him to stop before shooting him twice in the upper torso. “The caller reported the man had taken off all of his clothes and was just running throughout the entire complex during the time we received the call,” the DeKalb County police chief, Cedric Alexander, said in a press conference. Alexander said the officer, who has not been named, was suspended pending an investigation.

Hill was “running around” the complex, “crawling around on the ground naked” and hanging off of balconies when police arrived, according to Alexander. On Twitter, activists picked up the man’s name as a hashtag in calls for change, and others reported he may have had a history of mental illness.

The shooting comes on the heels of a police shooting in Wisconsin, where a 19-year-old unarmed man was shot by police over the weekend, prompting several days of protests.

DeKalb County police have faced criticism over their response to other 911 calls. In January, police shot a man who called 911 after coming home to find his girlfriend stabbed. The man allegedly confronted a police officer, who he thought could have been the intruder, with a gun only to be shot himself, according to local media.

Alexander said the investigation was immediately handed over to the Georgia bureau of investigation “as a result of what’s going on here, across this country”.


MoJo: What Did Monsanto Show Bill Nye to Make Him Fall "in Love" With GMOs?

What Did Monsanto Show Bill Nye to Make Him Fall "in Love" With GMOs?
By Tom Philpott * Wed Mar. 4, 2015 * Mother Jones

Bill Nye, the bow-tied erstwhile kids' TV host, onetime dancer with the stars, and tireless champion of evolution and climate science, was never a virulent or wild-eyed critic of genetically modified crops. Back in 2005, he did a pretty nuanced episode of his TV show on it, the takeaway of which was hardly fire-breathing denunciation: "Let's farm responsibly, let's require labels on our foods, and let's carefully test these foods case by case."

In his book Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation, published just last November, Nye reiterated these points. His concern about GMOs centered mainly on unintended consequences of growing them over large expanses—he cited the example of crops engineered to resist herbicides, which have been linked pretty decisively to the decline of monarch butterflies, which rely on abundant milkweeds, which in turn have been largely wiped out in the Midwest by GMO-enabled herbicide use. Nye praised certain GMOs, such as corn engineered to repel certain insects, but concluded that "if you're asking me, we should stop introducing genes from one species into another," because "we just can't know what will happen to other species in that modified species' ecosystem."

Now, Nye's doubts have evidently fallen away like milkweeds under a fine mist of herbicide. In a February interview filmed backstage on Bill Maher's HBO show (starting about 3:40 in the below video), Nye volunteered that he was working on a revision of the GMO section of Undeniable. He gave no details, just that he "went to Monsanto and I spent a lot of time with the scientists there." As a result, he added with a grin, "I have revised my outlook, and am very excited about telling the world. When you're in love, you want to tell the world!"

Monsanto's longtime chief technology officer, Robb Fraley, responded to the interview with an approving tweet featuring a photo of Nye at company HQ:

Tweet: "Thanks @BillNye for visit & advancing #science understanding. Look forward to more discussion! http://bit.ly/1EUeUuu * 9:01 AM - 27 Feb 2015

It will be interesting to hear what wonders within Monsanto's R&D labs turned Nye from a nuanced GMO skeptic to a proud champion.


TTIP must not allow companies to sue EU countries for environmental laws, say MPs

So the EU nations want to 'not allow' ISDS tribunals to restrict their 'right to regulate' (to protect the environment).
Well then, what about the USA? Will the USA retain the 'right to regulate' without being threatened with
lawsuits from greedy corporations who are fouling the environment for profit?

To me this whole idea of ISDS litigation amounts to an abrogation of national sovereignty to unbridled corporate greed, at a time when we need to do MORE to protect the environment not less.

TTIP must not allow companies to sue EU countries for environmental laws, say MPs
Committee calls for European countries to retain right to protect the environment with
impunity in negotiations for EU-US trade deal

by Karl Mathiesen * Monday 9 March 2015 * The Guardian

A major free trade deal should not allow US companies to sue European nations when they pass environmental laws that hurt their profits, MPs said on Tuesday. The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which is being negotiated between the EU and US, may contain a mechanism called investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS). This would allow investors and companies to sue countries when they introduce laws that restrict their business practices.

A report by the UK’s parliamentary environmental audit committee (EAC) said: “EU states must retain their ‘right to regulate’, but a TTIP treaty text that enshrines such a safeguard will be meaningless if the prospect of ISDS litigation produces a chilling effect on future regulation-setting.”

Joan Walley, the committee’s chair, said that once the trade treaty is signed it must include a guarantee that states could protect the environment with impunity. “Any dispute settlement provision must unambiguously deny US companies any opportunity to sue us when we look to introduce necessary environmental or public health safeguards,” said Walley, the Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent North.


In 2011, Phillip Morris infamously sued the Australian government, via an ISDS clause in their free trade agreement with Hong Kong, over laws enforcing plain packaging on cigarettes. The case is ongoing.

Because of these risks, the EAC said “a compelling case for the inclusion of an ISDS in TTIP has not yet been made”.

The report also found that any attempt to align EU environmental safeguards with those in the US, which are generally seen to be weaker, could result in a “race to the bottom” in which protection was watered down to the lowest common denominator.


WTF? Obama Declares Venezuela A Threat To U.S. National Security? Really?

More sabre rattling from the WH? What's a progressive peacenik to think?

Obama Declares Venezuela A Threat To U.S. National Security
Reuters * 03/09/2015 * By Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton

WASHINGTON, March 9 (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama issued an executive order on Monday declaring Venezuela a national security threat, sanctioning seven individuals and expressing concern about the Venezuelan government's treatment of political opponents.

"Venezuelan officials past and present who violate the human rights of Venezuelan citizens and engage in acts of public corruption will not be welcome here, and we now have the tools to block their assets and their use of U.S. financial systems," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said in a statement.

"We are deeply concerned by the Venezuelan government's efforts to escalate intimidation of its political opponents. Venezuela's problems cannot be solved by criminalizing dissent," he added.

The White House said the executive order targeted people whose actions undermined democratic processes or institutions, had committed acts of violence or abuse of human rights, were involved in prohibiting or penalizing freedom of expression, or were government officials involved in public corruption.

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