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marmar

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit, MI
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 12:18 AM
Number of posts: 72,733

Journal Archives

Peter King attacks AP reporters who exposed NYPD's surveillance of Muslims


(Salon) TAMPA — In order to enter the Republican National Convention, one had to pass through multiple layers of security, which involved so many different law enforcement agencies that I literally lost count. So police issues were on my mind on Wednesday when I spotted Rep. Peter King, the cranky Irish Republican Army apologist from Long Island. I asked if he thought there was any merit to arguments leveled — by both the left and right alike — that police departments across the country have been excessively federalized and/or militarized, with the Tampa security situation being a prime example.

“No,” King stated plainly. “Obviously, we always have to be looking out at all times that the police maintain their proper role. But I think the Department of Homeland Security, and the police I deal with — whether it’s the FBI or the New York City Police Department — no, I think civil liberties are being protected. Privacy is being protected. And considering the nature of the threat against us, I would say the police are remarkably restrained.”

As chairman of the House committee on Homeland Security, King has been a vocal critic of the Associated Press’s Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation into the the NYPD’s anti-terrorism policies — including its collusion with the CIA and indiscriminate unlawful surveillance of Muslims (even outside New York City). “Disgraceful,” King crowed when I mentioned the investigation. “First of all, they cannot find one thing the NYPD did that was illegal or wrong. Everything was open-source; they did not violate one law, not one provision of the Constitution. Meanwhile, there have been 14 plots against New York that have been stopped. We are the No. 1 target in the world. At any given time there are plots either in place or being contemplated, and they’ve just done a phenomenal job. They’re not violating anyone’s civil liberties or civil rights. The Associated Press — it was a terrible cheap shot and disgrace.”

I asked King if he believed the highly renowned journalists responsible for the reports, Matt Apuzzo and Adam Goldman, had integrity. “No, absolutely not. They have no moral integrity. Absolutely not.” ................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.salon.com/2012/08/31/peter_king_ap_has_no_moral_integrity/



Big Banks Are Hazardous to U.S. Financial Health


By Simon Johnson Sep 2, 2012 6:30 PM ET


(Bloomberg) The debate over whether the U.S.’s largest banks are too big is heating up. Since the 2008 financial crisis, the perception has taken hold among some analysts and economists that certain U.S. institutions are too big to fail, meaning they would have to be bailed out to protect the financial system in the event of another calamity.

The recent trading losses at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and scandals over money laundering at HSBC Holdings Plc and Standard Chartered Plc have prompted even financial-industry insiders to ask whether these complex global organizations are too big to manage.

The continued downward spiral in Europe raises a similar question: Are some banks too big to save, meaning their collapse could dramatically worsen the euro crisis (as happened in Ireland in the fall of 2008 and is happening now in Spain and Greece)?

The critics must be gaining converts because, in recent weeks, the defenders of large banks have started to push back. William B. Harrison Jr., the former chairman of JPMorgan, and Wayne Abernathy, the executive vice president of the American Bankers Association, both wrote op-eds that argue against breaking up banks. The Financial Services Roundtable, a large- bank lobby group, has circulated two e-mails insisting that the critics’ arguments are based entirely on myths. ..................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-02/big-banks-are-hazardous-to-u-s-financial-health.html



Big Banks Are Hazardous to U.S. Financial Health


By Simon Johnson Sep 2, 2012 6:30 PM ET


(Bloomberg) The debate over whether the U.S.’s largest banks are too big is heating up. Since the 2008 financial crisis, the perception has taken hold among some analysts and economists that certain U.S. institutions are too big to fail, meaning they would have to be bailed out to protect the financial system in the event of another calamity.

The recent trading losses at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and scandals over money laundering at HSBC Holdings Plc and Standard Chartered Plc have prompted even financial-industry insiders to ask whether these complex global organizations are too big to manage.

The continued downward spiral in Europe raises a similar question: Are some banks too big to save, meaning their collapse could dramatically worsen the euro crisis (as happened in Ireland in the fall of 2008 and is happening now in Spain and Greece)?

The critics must be gaining converts because, in recent weeks, the defenders of large banks have started to push back. William B. Harrison Jr., the former chairman of JPMorgan, and Wayne Abernathy, the executive vice president of the American Bankers Association, both wrote op-eds that argue against breaking up banks. The Financial Services Roundtable, a large- bank lobby group, has circulated two e-mails insisting that the critics’ arguments are based entirely on myths. ..................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-02/big-banks-are-hazardous-to-u-s-financial-health.html



A timely oldie: How Rev. Moon’s ‘Snakes’ Infested US


from Consortium News:


How Rev. Moon’s ‘Snakes’ Infested US
September 2, 2012

From the Archive: The death of Rev. Sun Myung Moon at 92 ends the long personal saga of a Korean theocrat whose life intertwined his bizarre religion with threads into organized crime and right-wing politics. Moon also showed how a fortune spent on media could change Washington’s political dynamic, as Robert Parry wrote in 2010.

By Robert Parry (Published on May 1, 2010)


As an investigative journalist, I’m not much for catchy political metaphors, but the revelation that snakes and rodents are infesting the Washington Times building as the Rev. Sun Myung Moon’s newspaper sinks into a financial swamp does have some poetic justice about it.

After all, for several decades, the right-wing Washington Times has sent disinformation slithering through the U.S. political system while creating a nest for propagandists who have befouled American democracy with irrationality and dirty tricks. Indeed, one could say that Moon’s newspaper pioneered the modern style of deceptive “journalism” that is the daily fare on Fox News, angry talk radio and right-wing blogs.

The immediate cause of the Washington Times’ financial plight was the bitter succession fight among children of the aging Unification Church founder who was no longer capable of maintaining personal control over his global religious-political-business empire.

That empire had split into competing factions, with one of Moon’s children, Justin Moon, who was in charge of the Asian operations, deciding to slash the church’s massive subsidy to the Washington Times headed by another son, Preston Moon. Staffers who have survived a series of draconian layoffs reported that snakes and mice had slipped into the newspaper’s building because the owners couldn’t afford exterminators to combat the infestations. ..................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://consortiumnews.com/2012/09/02/how-rev-moons-snakes-infested-us/



Repug goons try to prevent Amy Goodman from interviewing David Koch




Chris Hedges: Life Is Sacred


from truthdig:



Life Is Sacred

Posted on Sep 3, 2012
By Chris Hedges


I retreat in the summer to the mountains and coasts of Maine and New Hampshire to sever myself from the intrusion of the industrial world. It is in the woods and along the rugged Atlantic coastline, the surf thundering into the jagged rocks, that I am reminded of our insignificance before the universe and the brevity of human life. The stars, thousands visible in the night canopy above me, mock human pretensions of grandeur. They whisper the biblical reminder that we are dust and to dust we shall return. Love now, they tell us urgently, protect what is sacred, while there is still time. But now I go there also to mourn. I mourn for our future, for the fading majesty of the natural world, for the folly of the human species. The planet is dying. And we will die with it.

The giddy, money-drenched, choreographed carnival in Tampa and the one coming up in Charlotte divert us from the real world—the one steadily collapsing around us. The glitz and propaganda, the ridiculous obsessions imparted by our electronic hallucinations, and the spectacles that pass for political participation mask the deadly ecological assault by the corporate state. The worse it gets the more we retreat into self-delusion. We convince ourselves that global warming does not exist. Or we concede that it exists but insist that we can adapt. Both responses satisfy our mania for eternal optimism and our reckless pursuit of personal comfort. In America, when reality is distasteful we ignore it. But reality will soon descend like the Furies to shatter our complacency and finally our lives. We, as a species, may be doomed. And this is a bitter, bitter fact for a father to digest.

My family and I hike along the desolate coastline of an island in Maine that is accessible only by boat. We stop in the afternoons on remote inlets and look out across the Atlantic Ocean or toward the shoreline and the faint outline of the Camden hills. My youngest son throws pebbles into the surf. My daughter toddles over the rounded beach stones holding her mother’s hand. The gray and white seagulls chatter loudly overhead. The scent of salt is carried by the wind. Life, the life of my family, the life around me, is exposed at once as fragile and sacred. And it is worth fighting to save.

When I was a boy and came to this coast on duck hunting trips with my uncle, fishing communities were vibrant. The fleets caught haddock, cod, herring, hake, halibut, swordfish, pollock and flounder. All these fish have vanished from the area, victims of commercial fishing that saw huge trawlers rip up the seafloor and kill the corals, bryozoans, tubeworms and other species that nurtured new schools of fish. The trawlers left behind barren underwater wastelands of mud and debris. It is like this across the planet. Forests are cut down. Water is contaminated. Air is saturated with carbon emissions. Soil is depleted. Acidity levels in the oceans skyrocket. Atmospheric temperatures soar. And someone, somewhere, makes obscene sums of money from it. Corporations, indifferent to what is sacred, see the death of the planet as another investment opportunity. They are scurrying to mine the exposed polar waters for the last vestiges of oil, gas, minerals and fish. And since the corporations dictate our relationship to the ecosystem on which we depend for life, the chances of our survival look bleaker and bleaker. The final phase of 5,000 years of settled human activity ends with collective insanity. ...................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/life_is_sacred_20120903/



Whatever happened to...................


.............. Katherine Harris?





Krazy K has all but disappeared since her disastrous 2006 Senate candidacy. ....... Sarah Palin, this is your future.


Matt Taibbi: Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan Speeches Make Me Miss George Bush


from Rolling Stone:


I didn't watch Mitt Romney's acceptance speech last night. I can't do it: even under normal circumstances, watching politicians of any stripe talk about anything at all makes me unable to sleep. And a convention speech, which is almost always a deeply schizoid address authored by 38 different infighting political consultants and amplified by the heaviest possible doses of network TV's goofball effects and nuclear-powered stagecraft, is generally the most unwatchable of all political performances. So I try always to watch such speeches the next morning, and am just now taking in the Romney address.

The Republican convention in general has been a strange affair. The vibe around Republican politics in general was much happier in the days before the Bush presidency cratered. Republican politics before Bush imploded was a confident brew of guns, Jesus, and Freedom.

A Republican politician's job back then was, if not easy, pretty clear: you bashed welfare queens and free-riders, told tearful stories of fetuses composing operas in the womb, and promised to bomb America's enemies back to the Stone Age. You didn't have to split hairs or hedge bets: you got up on stage, took a baseball bat to liberals and terrorists and other such perverts, and let the momentum of the crowd carry you to victory. You were like Slim Pickens at the end of Dr. Strangelove, riding high with a nuke between your legs, waving your ten-gallon hat at and going out in a blaze of yeeee-hah!!!s.

The complete piece is at: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/mitt-romney-paul-ryan-speeches-make-me-miss-george-bush-20120831#ixzz25KMnSai1




Let's not pretend that condescension is unique to the North


AlterNet / By Chuck Thompson

Why Do So Many Southerners Think They're the Only Real Americans?
Let's not pretend that condescension is unique to the North.

August 27, 2012 |


Editor's note: Portions of this article are reproduced or adapted from Better Off Without ’Em: A Northern Manifesto for Southern Secession.


For large chunks of the last two years I traveled through Dixie doing research for a book called Better Off Without ’Em: A Northern Manifesto for Southern Secession (published this month by Simon & Schuster).

Wherever I went in the South I was called a socialist.

I was branded anti-American.

For supporting the administration of a sitting U.S. president, I was told that I was in league with the Muslim vanguard of a secret plot to destroy the United States.

Although otherwise respectable reviewers, bloggers and emailers have accused me of seeking out only the opinions of slack-jawed hayfoots slurping moonshine from ceramic jugs during my travels, the truth is that in the South this sort of ugly invective is mainstream orthodoxy. .................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.alternet.org/books/why-do-so-many-southerners-think-theyre-only-real-americans



Bizarre phallus-on-its-head fish found in Vietnam



'Penis Head' Fish, Phallostethus Cuulong, Discovered In Mekong Delta
By Megan Gannon, LiveScience News Editor:




A new species of fish with a penis on its head has been discovered in Vietnam. But it's not what you're picturing — actually it's probably worse. This penis includes a rod and a jagged hook used for grabbing the female during sex.

The fish, Phallostethus cuulong, was discovered by researchers in Vietnam's Mekong Delta. It is the newest member of the Phallostethidae family, a group of fish with small, skinny, nearly transparent bodies that live in Southeast Asia, and which are distinguished by the location of their sex organs.

The more technical name for the male fish's penis is the priapium, a complex, muscular organ that looks like it's attached to the fish's chin. The priapium includes the urogential opening and the anus, as well as a bony rod and a sawlike hook, used to clutch on to the female during mating, the researchers said. The female fish's genital opening is also located at her throat. ..............(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/30/penis-head-fish-phallostethus-cuulong_n_1844257.html?utm_hp_ref=green



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