Member since: Fri Dec 10, 2010, 10:36 PM
Number of posts: 49,999
Number of posts: 49,999
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All revolutionaries smoke, according to the sociology professor from Penn State, as she lit up on the airplane...
You. Can. Not. Make. This. Shit. Up.
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 11:20 PM (2 replies)
Julian Assange, Ecuador, and the Belarus connection
A rights group is demanding WikiLeaks reply to claims it gave intelligence on dissidents to the Belarusian regime.
By Bill Weinberg - 08 Sep 2012
...In unrest following the evidently stolen elections of December 2010, strongman Lukashenko (ruling since 1994) had over 600 protesters and dissidents rounded up. Some were tortured, and the campaign to win their release brought courageous "silent protesters" repeatedly to the streets. The affair won Belarus the opprobrium of the UN Human Rights Commissioner, EU, US State Department and global rights groups, but (happily for Lukashenko) few international headlines.
Last year, the free-press advocacy group Index on Censorship cited evidence that WikiLeaks' "accredited" representative in Belarus, Israel Shamir, may have provided the Lukashenko regime with intelligence from US diplomatic cables to help determine who to round up. Lukashenko boasted in the state-controlled media of receiving WikiLeaks intelligence that revealed who was "working behind the scenes" in the December protests. Shamir was meanwhile boasting claims on CounterPunch website that WikiLeaks cables provided "proof positive" the protests were "orchestrated" by the State Department. (The "proof positive" consisted of some indications of a US AID contractor's involvement in money smuggling.)
Did Shamir turn over WikiLeaks cables to Lukashenko that "named names" of activists identified or cultivated by the State Department? Index on Censorship queried WikiLeaks on the issue, submitting a list of questions about what material WikiLeaks or Shamir may have provided the Lukasheno regime, and Shamir's official status in the WikiLeaks organisation. One WikiLeaks representative responded tersely: "We have no further reports on this 'rumour/issue'." Another told Index: "Obviously it is not approved."
Adding to the controversy, Israel Shamir is a notorious and obsessive Anti-Semite. The charge of anti-Semitism is of course often used unfairly against critics of Israel - but even Palestine solidarity activists have issued denouncements of Shamir, warning that association with him could hurt the movement. Shamir's website avidly promotes Holocaust revisionists, and runs such non-ironic headlines as "Down With Human Rights" and "In Defense of Prejudice" - this in response to protests of Shamir's references to war-mongering "Jewish media-lords". Lukashenko, perhaps not coincidentally, has also used ugly Jew-baiting rhetoric against the opposition movement...
But with Lukashenko's boasts (and Shamir's clear enthusiasm for Lukashenko) the Belarus case may go beyond mere WikiLeaks "blowback" to active collaboration with repression. The lack of concern with this question by WikiLeaks' advocates on the left raises questions about a single-standard commitment to human rights...
There is a lot of back and forth there in the article. It's worth the read. What has struck me is the value of ideology over the value of the lives of people. These are Ron and Rand Paul supporters, that is, Libertarians, and we have learned their opinion on most of us here. Including women and minorities. Even if want to forgive, for our safety, we can't forget our lives mean nothing to their version of how the world should be, which does not allow us a voice.
Julian Assange and Europe's Last Dictator
The former WikiLeaks chief will moderate a public discussion about Belarus, despite damaging the cause
by Kapil Komireddi - March 2012
You can see two belief systems, one of which is called the Cult of Julian Assange, playing there. In the meantime, some rather inconsequential people have decided to stay out of political life for fear of the survelliance state in place there. Where some have been tortured. This is the real thing going on there.
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 11:03 PM (1 replies)
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 09:45 PM (2 replies)
And this one is even better:
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 09:36 PM (1 replies)
Imperialism and a PoliceState© all rolled into one. But none dare call it by its name...
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 09:28 PM (1 replies)
Thom Hartmann: Conservative Millennials, Boomers & Libertarians all being Conned
Multigenerational political influence by a very narrow special interest group is rare, but we're seeing it played out right now in front of us. A billionaire family - the Kochs - have gone from influencing my father's generation, to my generation, to my kids' generation - and very few Americans realize it. Daddy Koch - Fred - made his first millions palling around with Joe Stalin in the Soviet Union in the 1920s and 1930s. As the fascists rose to power in Europe in the 1930s, he was an enthusiastic supporter of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, who invented the word "fascist," meaning essentially the takeover of democratic governments by big business interests. Mussolini went so far as to dissolve the Italian parliament, and replace elected politicians with representatives of each district's largest corporations. Fred Koch and Mussolini both particularly hated the trade unionists and their sometimes allies, the communists. So after Mussolini, along with his ally Hitler, lost World War II against America, Fred Koch brought the anti-communist pro-business-running-goverment - what some would call "facist" - torch to America big time, helping start the John Birch Society.
Two of their biggest efforts are pretty well known. After the Supreme Court ruled, in 1954, in the Brown versus Board of Education case, that segregation in schools was unconstitutional, the John Birch Society put up billboards all across America calling for the impeachment of the Chief Justice of the Court, Earl Warren. Daddy Fred Koch was very concerned about the integration of our schools - in fact, he wrote, "The colored man looms large in the Communist plan to take over America." With JFK's election, Fred Koch's John Birch Society went off again - this time against JFK. Using rhetoric not that different from the "secret Muslim" plots the Tea Party promotes about Obama, in a 1963 speech Fred said that " infiltrate the highest offices of government in the U.S. until the President is a Communist, unknown to the rest of us.”
When JFK was scheduled to come to Dallas that year, the JBS distributed flyers saying, "Wanted, for Treason" all around the town two days before his arrival. On the day JFK was assassinated, large ads ran in the Dallas newspapers attacking Kennedy as being soft on Castro, among other things. That was my dad's generation. Daddy Koch died, and his sons Charles and David took over the family business of promoting the business and billionaire takeover of our American government.
They're doing it with a two-pronged attack. For people over forty, they're funding the Tea Party through a variety of groups, most notably Americans for Prosperity and Freedomworks. And for people under forty, they're funding Libertarian think tanks, like the Charles Koch Foundation (which was renamed as the Cato Institute), and the Reason Foundation, where David Koch is a trustee, which happily embraces a new generation of young people with the idea that "freedom" means the "freedom" to buy politicians and the "freedom" to pollute. For the young people, of course, the Libertarians throw in the "freedom" to smoke dope and hire a hooker, but those are just bones being cynically tossed to young potheads and young protoge's of Dick Morris.
But the Koch's have been inside the Libertarian movement from its beginning - 32 years ago this year, David Koch was the Libertarian Party's official candidate for Vice President of the United States. It's really pretty incredible, but it's all true. The main agenda of the Koch's John Birch Society was to enhance the power and control of our government by big business and billionaires, while fighting organized labor and people like me who were protesting the Vietnam War. The main agenda of the Koch's Tea Party is to get millionaires elected to Congress and have them cut taxes and regulations for Koch Industries and other polluting corporations, while fighting organized labor and people like me who were protesting the Iraq War.
And the main agenda of the Koch's Libertarians - again, funded and trained by the Koch Brothers - is to keep intact the power of big money over our government, cut taxes and regulations on billionaires and polluting industries, while fighting organized labor and people like me who are protesting the corporate takeover of the United States of America. Three generations of Americans, all duped by the same billionaire family. Three generations buying into the idea that "what's best for industry and billionaires is best for America" - and that government is our "enemy" rather than something that our nation's founders fought and died to create for all of "We The People" And, increasingly, it's not just the Koch family. The Walton family - whose combined wealth is greater than 40 percent of all Americans - funded a covert campaign to rename the estate tax as the "death tax" and lobbied so hard they got the estate tax eliminated entirely in 2010.
Senator Bernie Sanders pointed out yesterday that - so far - we know of 26 billionaires - worth over $146 billion - who have already "invested" or committed to invest over $561 million dollars in this election cycle - most of it to defeat Democrats who want to raise their taxes. The good news is that young people are waking up and realizing that the Libertarian hustle the billionaires are feeding them is just that - a hustle. Just like Tea Partiers are waking up to their having been had by billionaires who want to privatize their Social Security. Hopefully, soon, America will regain its sanity and we'll go back to viewing cranky billionaires the way my Dad's generation did - as Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower did - when Eisenhower referred to their ilk as "small in number and stupid" They're not stupid any more, and if we really value American traditions, we really must push back on this kind of power and influence in American politics.
I really appreciated how Thom posted the entire transcript there, as some of us read much faster and don't want to listen to videos. Here is the thread he posted here:
He also made this video that explains so much about what we are being forced into. Feudalism by any other name. See the exact process being done to us right now:
Thom Hartmann says Conservatives hate big government because its the only think that can keep big business from trampling the average working person.
That's why I don't give creedence to those who will trash government non-stop, and discourage voting and tell people to walk away. The power is not going away. This is what they are going to get to all of us.
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 08:33 PM (1 replies)
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 08:17 PM (1 replies)
But at least two million heard Bernie Sanders and signed onto his petition to strenghten the social safety net and save lives. But will the sounds of the deaths be played by MSM?
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 07:33 PM (0 replies)
Why Isn’t A Possible Lynching in NC National News?
Lennon Lacy was a 17 year old African American high school student whose body was found hanging from a children’s swing set in a largely white mobile home park in rural North Carolina less than two months ago. The local police declared his death a suicide within nine hours of finding his body – despite the fact that the shoes on his feet were not his own and were two sizes too small, despite his parents saying that conclusion couldn’t be right and despite the fact that locals in the small, rural town he lived in have alluded that his death might have been a hate crime. Lennon Lacy, a 17 year old African American high school student, was found hanging by the neck in a largely white trailer park and local police closed the case on the possibility that he was lynched before performing any investigation. Why don't more people know about this?
Lennon’s family wants a federal investigation. The NAACP has asked for a federal investigation saying “we believed there was a good possibility of a race-based homicide and possible law-enforcement involvement in the decision to provide the State Medical Examiner with their conclusion that this was a suicide before any real investigation of a possible homicide had been undertaken.“
I wrote a diary about this yesterday. The title was provocative and specifically mentioned lynching. More people cared about a fire chief using the N-word. I find that shameful. I will keep writing about Lennon Lacy and the need for a federal investigation every.single.day until this community knows his name and why a federal investigation is important.
My diary from yesterday appears below. Whether or not you read it, please join me in pushing for a federal investigation into the possible murder by lynching of this child...
My add ot the thread:
Okay, the other wasn't ruled a suicide, but an 'accident.' I'll go back and edit it. The details show it was anything but!
WTF??? Georgia teen was stuffed with newspaper after death, family lawyer says
The mysterious death of a Georgia teen has taken a bizarre twist with the revelation that an autopsy of his exhumed remains found his internal organs missing and his body stuffed with newspaper.
The family of Kendrick Johnson, 17, of Valdosta, Ga., was "outraged" and "devastated" by the discovery and believes his death was a murder that is being covered up, a lawyer representing them said Thursday.
Johnson, a three-sport athlete, was found dead on Jan. 11 in a rolled-up wrestling mat in his high school gym. State medical examiners concluded that he accidentally suffocated while trying to retrieve a sneaker.
But his parents, Kenneth and Jacquelyn Johnson, were doubtful about that conclusion. In June, they won a court order to have Kendrick's body exhumed for a second autopsy.
I'm sure there are many more, some of which I've heard of personally, but those are anecdotal despite the sources who were involved in the area I lived in. These things are not unknown far out in the country. We mostly hear of things in the city, but it's not just there.
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 07:21 PM (1 replies)
Sen. Paul Introduces National Right to Work Act
Feb 1, 2013
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Sen. Rand Paul this week introduced the National Right to Work Act, S. 204, which seeks to preserve and protect the free choice of individual employees to form, join, or assist labor organizations, or to refrain from such activities.
"Every American worker deserves the right to freedom of association - and I am concerned that the 26 states that allow forced union membership and dues infringes on these workers' rights," Sen. Paul said. "Right to work laws ensure that all Americans are given the choice to refrain from joining or paying dues to a union as a condition for employment. Nearly 80 percent of all Americans support the principles and so I have introduced a national Right to Work Act that will require all states to give their workers the freedom to choose."
Sen. Paul's Right to Work Act does not add a single word to existing federal law, it simply deletes forced unionism provisions in federal law.
Due to six infringing and freedom-crushing provisions in the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and the Railway Labor Act (RLA), there are currently 8 million working Americans who are required by law to pay union dues. These workers are not required to join a workers union but they are required to pay the dues; and if workers refuse to pay these union fees, they risk losing their jobs to Big Labor.
Below is text of Sen. Paul's legislation:
(Press releases are in the Public Domain.)
He is also cited here:
From our side, the Bold Progressive website:
Koch-Funded Rand Paul Introduces National Anti-Union 'Right To Work' Bill To The Senate
By Zaid Jilani - February 4, 2013
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) just introduced a federal so-called "right to work" law that would undermine labor organizing nationwide. Here's an excerpt from his press release touting the legislation:
"Every American worker deserves the right to freedom of association - and I am concerned that the 26 states that allow forced union membership and dues infringes on these workers' rights. Right to work laws ensure that all Americans are given the choice to refrain from joining or paying dues to a union as a condition for employment. Nearly 80 percent of all Americans support the principles and so I have introduced a national Right to Work Act that will require all states to give their workers the freedom to choose."
The fact is, no one is forced to join a union. What so-called "right to work" laws allow is for workers to receive union benefits without paying union dues, which undermines the ability for unions to represent workers.
Researchers from the nonpartisan Economic Policy Institute have found that the economies of states who have these laws "are associated with significantly lower wages and reduced chances of receiving employer-sponsored health insurance and pensions." They estimated that hourly wages for all workers -- not just union workers -- in these states are 3% lower.
There has never been a serious push for a national "right to work" law, making Paul's effort fairly unique. The National Right To Work Committee gave $7,500 to Paul's campaign, and Koch Industries -- which bankrolls state-wide efforts to install these laws -- is his third largest contributor.
And in 2015:
Right-To-Work: A Farce in One Long Act
A long read, worth it:
Posted by freshwest | Thu Mar 19, 2015, 05:35 PM (1 replies)