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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 67,620

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1. Something must be done. 2. This is something. 3. Therefore, let’s do this.

Matt Yglesias ✔ @mattyglesias

1. Something must be done.
2. This is something.
3. Therefore, let’s do this.

12:05 PM - 30 Aug 2013


Monsanto's Chemical Weapons

Friday News Dump? U.S. Had Intel on Chemical Strike Before It Was Launched

Geez, this is more than a little disturbing ...

American intelligence agencies had indications three days beforehand that the Syrian regime was poised to launch a lethal chemical attack that killed more than a thousand people and has set the stage for a possible U.S. military strike on Syria.


The disclosure -- part of a larger U.S. intelligence briefing on Syria's chemical attacks -- raises all sorts of uncomfortable questions for the American government.

Yes. Yes it does.

In a call with reporters Friday afternoon, senior administration officials did not address whether this information was shared with rebel groups in advance of the attack. A White House spokeswoman declined to comment on whether the information had been shared


"READY, AIM, TRADE": CNBC So Ready For You To Make A ‘Killing’ Off Your Upcoming Syria War

More importantly, what are Halliburton and KBR, fucking chopped liver?

Read more at http://wonkette.com/527113/man-cnbc-so-ready-for-you-to-make-a-killing-off-your-upcoming-syria-war#ev52ugYHX8W4q1hD.99

"The Tanning Bed Tax"


Department Of Justice Paves Way For Banks To Work With Pot Shops, Citing Public Safety

Department Of Justice Paves Way For Banks To Work With Pot Shops, Citing Public Safety
Posted: 08/30/2013 9:00 am EDT | Updated: 08/30/2013 11:06 am EDT

WASHINGTON -- Financial institutions and other enterprises that do business with marijuana shops that are in compliance with state laws are unlikely to be prosecuted for money laundering or other federal crimes that could be brought under existing federal drug laws, a senior Department of Justice official said Thursday.

During a briefing on the department's new policy Thursday, the official would not fully rule out prosecution in any case, but the guidance is a reversal of administration policy that had warned banks not to work with marijuana businesses. The Justice official said that the department recognized that forcing the establishments to operate on a cash basis put them at greater risk of robbery and violence.

A three-page memo that accompanied the Thursday announcement speaks to the situation in more general terms, noting that a well-regulated, legal marijuana industry could come with a number of benefits to public safety and health. After listing a set of federal priorities -- keeping pot away from kids, preventing gangs and cartels from profiting from the drug trade -- the memo, authored by Deputy Attorney General James Cole, suggests that "robust" state regulation of legal marijuana "may affirmatively address those priorities by, for example, implementing effective measures to prevent diversion of marijuana outside of the regulated system and to other states, prohibiting access to marijuana by minors, and replacing an illicit marijuana trade that funds criminal enterprises with a tightly regulated market in which revenues are tracked and account for."

It is difficult to argue that any system that operates only in cash could be a "tightly regulated market in which revenues are tracked and account for.


Why I voted against military intervention "white phosphorus" How Can That NOT Be A Chemical Weapon?"

Syria debate: why I voted against military intervention
A military strike could escalate into a wider conflict with many hundreds of thousands more victims and no exit strategy

Sarah Wollaston

"The "red line" was crossed in 1985, when Saddam Hussein systematically deployed these horrors against Iranian forces but it suited western governments to look the other way. It is in part the seething resentment at western double standards that prevents us claiming the moral high ground in this debate. What about the use of weaponised white phosphorus, which burns on contact with air and keeps burning right down to bone?

How can that not be a chemical weapon? Perhaps only because it has been deployed by US forces. We urge extremists to abandon conflict for the ballot box, yet the world's policeman has failed to call a coup a coup in Egypt or demand the release of Mohamed Morsi, their democratically elected leader."


Meet Sarah


"I was not a fan of Mr. Assad. He's an ally of Iran, he's made MISCHIEF," Bush told Fox News

"I was not a fan of Mr. Assad. He's an ally of Iran, he's made mischief," Bush told Fox News on Friday. "If he (Obama) decides to use the military, he's got the greatest military in the world backing him up."


Daniel Ellsberg: ‘Obama Would Have Indicted Me & Sought A Life Sentence For Me"

Daniel Ellsberg: ‘Obama Would Have Indicted Me’

But we come back to Obama. I think Obama’s interpretation is no, these are criminals… and he has decided to do what no previous president did ... which is to say prosecuted multiple whistle-blowers under the Espionage Act. He has brought seven indictments. ... Before him there were three presidents who each brought one … It’s an unprecedented campaign against whistle-blowing. And [Army Judge Denise Lind] is in a chain of command where she heard her commander in chief say [Manning] was guilty before he was even on trial. But I think he believes that, definitely. I have no question at all that Obama would not only have indicted me for the Pentagon Papers now ... even if it was before him, and I have no doubt that he would have sought a life sentence for me and believed I deserved it.

Transcript Here:
Listen Here:

It is the classic story of the boy who cried wolf.

The British members of parliament who debated whether to take action against Syria were obviously haunted by the mistakes of the Iraq War and determined not to repeat them.

The case of Obama and Cameron against the Syrian government has some holes, but it isn’t a bad case. But it involves murky allegations of weapons of mass destruction use by an Arab regime, and a unilateral Anglo-American shock and awe aerial attack. It looks way too much like Iraq, and there is no telling where it might lead. Britain is not very far from Syria and the repercussions of an attack could be significant. Britain also has a significant Muslim minority population that is die hard set against an attack on Syria.

The vote puts President Obama between a rock and a hard place. The formerly solid Anglo-American solidarity has been broken. Obama does not have the Arab League and he does not have the UN Security Council. He does not even have a consensus on the European continent.

Obama should pivot now and choose vigorous diplomacy over a military strike. The latter will now have no legitimacy in international law, and would not be supported even by the British parliament.

The duplicity of Bush and Blair has deeply injured faith in government, even on the part of members of government. Their use of the high-flown rhetoric of protecting helpless populations from tyrants and deflecting dire threats of WMD cheapened those endeavors and trivialized them They bent the sword of state and rendered it useless in any similar situation.

the rest:
and more:

and a pertinent comment:

Maybe less the boy who cried wolf, who per the fable at least the last time was not lying, and in most versions paid a penalty for his idiocy.

Maybe more “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on ME.”

Considering what a “muscular foreign policy” has cost us and the rest of the world, a quarter of our wealth and more and millions dead, displaced and demoralized, with zero promise of any improvements to the General Welfare, maybe it’s time the “sword of state” gets at least half beaten into plowshares, and reduced to more of a Bowie or even Swiss Army Knife…
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