ciao tucker and other stuff for a monday

Posted by on Mar 10, 2008 | 0 comments

  • Why it took MSNBC so long to cancel Tucker Carlson is a mystery. His ratings have been bottom barrel consistently since launch and Carlson managed by sheer force of arrogance, personality and intellectual flatulence to produce one of the most routinely mundane, prosaic and mendacious shows on the air. Not to mention that he openly supprted terror and proffered a general perspective towards the free press that can be best described as totalitarian. Jon Stewart was right.
  • Bill Maher notes that it would be impossible for George W. Bush to be in any way behind the 9/11 plot for the simple fact that Bush is a moron. But, of course, all good plots need a fool. Just sayin’.
  • Glenn Greenwald links to fellow former Jakeneck grad Julian Sanchez’s excellent analysis and “dissection” of the GOP talking points regarding the FISA issue. Really essential reading…
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    Cheney and the Iraq Energy Task Force…

    Posted by on Feb 23, 2008 | 0 comments

    …the weed that won’t die. Jon Taplin gets down to brass tacks. (via Boing Boing)

    There is obviously something to this… Not like it’s a state secret that the US needs and wants Iraqi oil. It really says a great deal about conservatives and others who have never really been able to readily admit that the entire reason the US is even involved in the Middle East or Iraq or Afghanistan is oil.

    Personally, I’d have a lot more respect for all the keyboard commando’s and the chicken hawks if they simply admitted this fact outright. But, they do not, as if doing so will cross some line in the sand where only real and evil fascists go, a line they’ve already crossed anyway.

    This is why they spend so much time trying to convince the world that it’s the other side that are the fascists. Sad.

    And, lest we forget, Cheney’s planning to invade Iraq prior to 9/11 is one of the numerous points listed in Bruce Fein’s well thought out article on impeachment of the Administration for violations on a number of levels.

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    FISA, Telecom Immunity and the Fearful Fascists

    Posted by on Feb 22, 2008 | 0 comments

    Keith Obermann comes out with it and calls Bush a fascist. And, a liar.

    Fear is the Fascist’s favorite tool.

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    propaganda works

    Posted by on Feb 22, 2008 | 0 comments

    Watch the featured video over on the upper right hand corner to see the results of the right wing noise machine’s effort to taint the minds of people with incorrect information. It works. And, these people vote too. (via Rightwingsnarkle)

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    words of wisdom from douglas rushkoff

    Posted by on Jan 25, 2008 | 0 comments

    A gem over at Douglas’ blog, in the comments. For the “wish I’d said this” collection:

    Our resistance movement, such as it is, is buried in the minutia and manufactured paranoia, and missing the big picture. And this makes it even easier for the fascists to do their business


    If people really understood how serious and backwards it all is, they’d also immediately realize, (as one does in times of great danger) that there is no time for folly such as paranoia. Our instinct for survival kicks in. But, I fear that all too many are diffusing their instincts with mind games.

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    just because you’re paranoid….

    Posted by on Jan 3, 2008 | 0 comments

    Privacy International conducted a survey of the top surveillance societies in the EU and the World, and guess who ranked at the top as “endemic”?

    Russia, China and the United States.

    Woohoo! At least we’re good at something.

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    media consolidation primer

    Posted by on Dec 4, 2007 | 0 comments

    Watch the featured video in the right hand corner. A nice primer on what has been going on with media consolidation since 1996.

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    fight big media, do the democracy dance again

    Posted by on Dec 4, 2007 | 1 comment

    As noted earlier, the Bush Administration and the FCC are attempting to do an end run on the democratic process in regard to legislative measures concerning media consolidation coming before Congress on December 18, 2007. Bill Moyers Journal did their usual top notch investigative work on this important issue (watch the video) and it’s all heating up rather nicely. What’s it all about? Ralph Bernarado wrote in his post to the Disinformation group on Facebook:

    If you think media consolidation doesn’t matter much, just consider this country’s march to the Iraq War. A more diverse media landscape means more voices, more critical thinking, and therefore less groupthink: which is essential to a healthy democracy.

    And, that is what is at stake. A healthy democracy.

    Writes Josh Nelson:

    Rule changes such as the one (FCC Chairman) Martin is proposing are designed to further consolidate media ownership into the hands of the powerful few. Free Press conducted a study which found that while minorities make up 33% of the U.S. population, they make up just 3.26% of all TV station owners. Download the full study as a PDF here.

    At the hearing, FCC Commissioner Michael Copps said: “The commission always seems to be on the fast break to help big media, but it’s slow as molasses when the topic is the public interest. I will fight against any efforts to short-circuit the process.” Kudos to Commissioner Copps, but if we are going to stop this dangerous deregulation, we are all going to have to fight alongside him.

    For more information in his matter, the Center for Public Integrity has a nice study called “Well Connected” that gets down to who owns what and why it’s important. They also have a Media Tracker so you can find out who owns the media that controls the information in your neck of the woods. (You might be surprised.)

    Wanna get your hands dirty and make your voice heard? Good.

    If you are on Facebook, join the 100,000 by 12/18/07 to Fight Media Consolidation group and get your friends to join.

    Write an e-mail. You can contact the FCC directly, or use the handy dandy form that Common Cause has provided.

    Contact your elected officials in Congress. The folks at Free Press have a form for that too.

    Learn more at Stop Big Media.

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    all the fascism that’s fit to print

    Posted by on Nov 30, 2007 | 0 comments

    Over at the conspiracy minded Prison Planet, Paul Joseph Watson conducts an interview with Naomi Wolf where she connects the Nazi sympathizing ancestors of the current US president with the rise of their financial and political power today:

    “A small group of people began very systematically to use the law and dismantle the Constitution and put pressure on citizens to subvert the law – and that opened the door for everything that followed,” […]

    “There was a scheme in the 30’s and Prescott Bush was one of the leaders of this scheme, an industrialist who admired fascism and thought that was a good idea – to have a coup in the United States along the lines of the coup they saw taking place in Italy and Germany,” said Wolf, referring to the testimony of Marine Corps Maj.-Gen. Smedley Butler, who was approached by a wealthy and secretive group of industrialists and bankers, including Prescott Bush – the current President’s grandfather, who asked him to command a 500,000 strong rogue army of veterans that would help stage a coup to topple then President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. […]

    “What is amazing to me and resonant to me is that when the Nuremberg trials were finally put in place, these Nazi industrialists, some of whom had colluded with Americans including IBM, were about to be brought to trial and sent to prison – there was a moment at which they were going to look into turning the spotlight on their American partners,” […]

    “The family history is that you can make so much money uniting corporate interests with a fascist state that violently represses people, that’s why when I saw the recycling of so much Nazi language, Nazi tactics, Nazi strategies, Nazi imagery in the Bush White House and then finally belatedly people brought to me this history of Prescott Bush’s attempted coup and Smedley Butler’s revelations – it gives me absolute chills,”

    Concludes Watson:

    The fact that Bush’s grandfather was a Nazi cannot be presented alone as proof that President Bush is carrying on the legacy, but his policies and rhetoric, which in her essay Wolf clearly documents are borrowed from the Nazi playbook, and in particular the recent move to smear administration critics as potential terrorists, are evidence that George W. Bush is the figurehead for a modern-day fascist coup in America led by the Neo-Cons.

    Wolf concluded that history shows the only safe course for preserving freedom in such a climate is to prosecute and jail the protagonists of the coup as early as possible, a process many would argue should have been enacted several years ago.

    Indeed. Read the entire article and check out Wolf’s article Fascist America in 10 Easy Steps. Essential reading.

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    apathy kills and money rules

    Posted by on Nov 20, 2007 | 0 comments

  • Be sure to watch the new featured video in the upper right hand corner. (c/o Noelle Belle at Crooks and Liars) If you can’t see the video, that probably means you are using an old version of Internet Explorer, and you should be using Firefox anyway!
  • A new study finds that the US prison system is a “costly failure” – not a deterrent to crime and a black hole that sucks taxpayers money – but that reality is most definitely secondary, since prisons are one of the great corporate growth industries, both in the US and Iraq. It’s the wild wild west, and law and order lay in the hands of those with the most guns. Read More
  • democracy dance

    Posted by on Nov 19, 2007 | 0 comments

  • What is old is new again. Digby is doing an amazing job of comparing and contrasting the dirty tricks of the Nixon era with those currently underway. Snippet:

    After years of this sort of politics, from Atwater to Rove, from Willie Horton to Swift Boats, it would be nice to think the mainstream media have learned from the past and will ensure that things like this are adequately examined within the context of history and not just the heat of the moment. But that’s clearly too much to hope for.

    I’ve become convinced that assuming that people will naturally veer towards the truly honorable and right perspective in dealing with our fledgling and floundering democracy isn’t in the cards. There will always be those who are willing to lie and steal in order to maintain their base of power and access to power. Money is more important to these people than democracy. And, that’s the “no shit sherlock” moment of the day.

  • Bill Moyers Journal focused on a little covered legislative scuffle concerning recent developments with media consolidation that is currently underway:

    On November 2, 2007, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin announced that the Commission would hold the sixth and final public hearing on media consolidation November 9, 2007 in Seattle, Washington. Commissioners Michael Copps and Jonathan Adelstein blasted the Chairman’s decision to give the public only five business days notice before the hearing: “With such short notice, many people will be shut out … This is outrageous and not how important media policy should be made.”

    The business as usual practice of placing the needs of big business before the democratic process and the role of the people should be met at every moment it occurs. Our democracy is being bought and sold to the highest bidders, as is access.

    Watch the video online, and contact the FCC and let them know that doing an end run on the democratic process will not stand.

    Media outlets are the extended voice of the people. There is a reason the Founding Fathers placed the right of free speech and of a free press right at the top of the Bill of Rights. What is going on now is the threat they foresaw.

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    Greg Palast on Go Left TV

    Posted by on Nov 11, 2007 | 0 comments

    A couple weeks ago, working with NeoVids, yours truly shot some video with Greg Palast for the Air America show Ring of Fire that is now playing on Go Left TV. The topic was the Attack on Dan Rather. Check it out.

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    the american dream state

    Posted by on Nov 7, 2007 | 0 comments

    There was a time when we could do anything. Walking on the moon wasn’t a fantasy, it was a reality. Alas, the past seven years we’ve seen the bar lowered by a two term Bush White House compliant to politics and arrogance rather than the difficult choices and compromises that foster real solutions. The result has been the acquiescence of a stronger, more confident American policy and popular consensus of the role of America, both here and abroad. This malaise in leadership nurtures a perception amongst the domestic and global populace that expects nothing more than the usual level of brilliant incompetence. “Our leadership is incapable of anything more” is the general common belief, our leaders aim to please.

    Expectations are so low that when an inferior candidate for placement as the top cop in the land is presented, the general response from our leaders is “we can’t expect to do any better, so this will have to do.” Logic has been turned on it’s head. We settle for less, because shooting for better isn’t a an option any more. Better is the new bad. Up is down, down is up. Torture isn’t torture (because they say so and it’s something they truly believe in) when to any sane person, waterboarding is clearly torture.

    In the real world, whilst American’s argue about whether the so-called surge in Iraq is working or not working, those human beings whose lives are hanging by a thread because of the war in Iraq and the destabilization of the entire Middle East are experiencing a reality that has nothing to do with the politics of how the US military campaign is perceived or even whether the surge is a success or a failure and everything to do with staying alive. The contrast is striking, and embarrassing.

    And, it is costing us dearly. Not to mention the higher cost on the ground in Iraq. Which is the reality check.

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    conspiracy theory of the day: north american union

    Posted by on Oct 31, 2007 | 0 comments

    Watch the video, my comments are below. (hat tip: bizbuzz)

    Been reading about the North American Union for awhile, and the new currency the “Amero”, it’s been on television, on Lou Dobbs and elsewhere. And, as the dollar slides into oblivion, it seems more and more plausible, and the appearance of a dastardly plan seems more and more obvious at first glance. But, there are other things to consider. If it uses fear to motivate, then beware.

    First of all, I have strong opinions on unified conspiracy theories, which the video proffers. It assumes that there is a group of rich people sitting in a room, who are connected in some way, who share holiday meals together or go to the same church or to the same club, who are all colluding towards a “one world government” and doing all these things behind the scenes to end our lives of liberty, control us all and keep us happy with reruns of American Idol and truck loads of Twinkies. And, it doesn’t work like that. It’s more about social movements and media than about conspiring in groups.

    Endeavors such as the NAU function like a movement, a mob of like minded people who are working towards common goals, in this case the creation of a unified finacial system. (Whether you agree with the concept of a unified world financial system or not is up for debate.) It works more like how people decide all at once to start using the internet, or go to YouTube. One person to one person and on and on. Like a mob. That’s how the one world government thing is working. Like a focused flash mob. Because that is how media and the transference of ideas works, and the NAU is an idea, while it isn’t being promoted via the mass media, is still a form of media, an idea, that is conveyed from person to person, and has a genesis that goes back to World War 1. It is primarily a financial movement, not a political one. The two are intertwined by their incestuous relationship, there is no doubt. Which is a very important distinction.
    The banking movement has always been more of a mob than a group of white guys sitting in a room smoking Cubans and having sex with underage homeless teens while carving up the roles of the workers and deciding how to spend the workers pensions.

    Look at how the EU went down over the course of three decades. It was a movement, but it was primarily financial. It was all about establishing the Euro in member countries.. And, where was all the totalitarianism that the unified conspiracy theorists predicted would occur when the EU was instituted? Where is it? Did the constitutions of nations fall because of it? Did the people of Europe lose their liberties because of the establishment of the EU? No. They didn’t.

    The NAU, like the EU, is essentially solidifying financial arrangements that already exist anyway. It’s making them official and sanctioned by a government, in this case one it creates itself, which gives it the ability to establish legal sovereignty and thus protection under certain international laws.

    But, the ratification of new constitutions which would override established constitutions and thereby scuttle the rights of the people is not something easily done. Look at what happened with the attempted ratification of the EU constitution. It failed because so many nations felt it infringed (either too liberal or too conservatively) upon their national sovereignty and constitutional independence and the rights of the people. Another mob arose to confront the first mob. And, they did battle. It’s a form of democracy, open source, and sometimes unruly.

    The video above dives into the paranoid fantasy that there is a group of privileged people in a dark smoky room that has decided to scuttle the US constitution and bill of rights (which is being hammered at by the Bush Administration anyway) and it’s a done deal. And, the reality is: like what occurred in the EU, the scuttling of the US Constitution is an event that would require more than the establishment of the NAU and a new currency. It’s tacit fear mongering in the video. It’s propaganda meant to use fear as it’s primary tool of conversion of thought. It’s a media virus meant to scare.

    Fear is a powerful force used to propel emotional reactions in favor of intellectual ideas. Fear alters the media landscape in ways that aren’t apparent to those who watch media without
    a critical eye. Fear fosters an emotional response first and foremost and that means that any real consideration of the issues involved – from the presentation of the propaganda (what’s it’s primary motivation? are the facts correct? is it presented in a logical manner or a fallacious manner?) to the discussion and debate of the ideas within- is left forgotten in the dust of the initial emotional reaction.
    That’s the primary function of propaganda. To disrupt the thoughtful consideration and discussion of ideas and media and replace it with an emotional response that squelches discussion and consideration.

    From this view point, the primary movement that is afoot in the world today is a corporate financed right wing Christian based extremist movement that wants to establish an American Empire.

    The primary mistake in the video that I see is that it attempts to connect this movement to the One World Government one, as if they are one and the same, and that is incorrect. They are two movements that are vehemently opposed to each other on a number of fronts but work together out of necessity.

    The video assumes that when David Rockefeller (who is a member of the banking establishment) tells Aaron Russo about an “event” that will occur (9/11) that Rockefeller knew this because of his involvement in the banking “one world government” movement. And, that assumption is erroneous. It’s incorrect. Like many people, Rockefeller was aware of the extremist movement that had been ballooning under the surface – of right wing corporate based pro-war, pro-American Empire movement. Hardcore extremist believers in the privatization of the military forces of the USA and it’s allies, who wished to solidify their power and economic reach by the creation of a situation that is irreversible, one that creates the inevitable need for the US and it’s corporate military personal to be in the Middle East for the foreseeable future. A permanent private corporate military presence in the Middle East to replace the lost US military bases which were abandoned in Saudi Arabia due to internal pressures within that totalitarian regime. (Not to mention the fact that the Saudi Arabian oil reserves are nearing the end of their long term usefulness.)

    Does the banking and one world government stand to gain from the establishment of a permanent US presence in the Middle East? Of course. Money creates strange bedfellows to be sure.

    Think for a moment what type of reaction would occur in the USA – on the left and the right – if the NAU were established and it was even perceived – whether it was true or not- that the establishment of the NAU would scuttle and US Constitution and Bill of Rights. Can you imagine the popular uproar?

    The assumption that this information is being kept under raps in order to foment a totalitarian regime is a bit over the top. Like most things of this nature, the press is asked to not react and not assist information until it is more documented and understood. The same thing was done in the establishment of the EU.

    Informed citizens around the world understood in the early 80’s that the EU was going to be established. It wasn’t an issue that was widely understood or seen in the media worldwide until the early 90’s. Was there a conspiracy there to take away the rights of Europeans and control their lives? Doesn’t appear to be does it?

    It’s easy to see conspiracy in emotional contexts based in fear. What we don’t know can hurt us. At least in our minds.

    The real issue here is how much control do we want banks to have in our world? Is the creation of economic unions in our best interests?

    And, as far as liberties are concerned: As long as we remain vigilant and fight for what we believe in, and stay informed and aware, our rights should remain secure.

    Any and all affronts to our rights will be met and challenged. That much is clear.

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    Jews "need perfecting" says attention whore Ann Coulter

    Posted by on Oct 12, 2007 | 0 comments

    You gotta hand it to Ann Coulter, she’s consistent. Not content with insulting Islam and professing her desire to convert Muslim’s to Christianity by brute force (and raise her book sales), it would seem that the uncivilized Jews of the world are next on her list.

    Which leads one to wonder: Does she have a book to sell? Why. Yes. She. Does. How convenient! (Go to Amazon and look it up, I’m not linking to her hate filled nonsense here.)

    Since when did it become standard issue to spout racist rhetoric to sell a book? Just wonderin’.

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