May 19, 2006

  • Pentagon hit by a flying cheese sandwich! counterthink.org The Maintenance of Corporate Power -- The moment the flooding was reported in New England, the barking dogs on Fox News started hammering relentlessly on their theme that "if it's not a security issue, it's not the government's job to help these people." Just in case anyone was thinking otherwise, don't get any ideas about the government coming in helping the people who are flooded out of their homes. The government's business is war and conquest abroad, to make the world safe for American corporations to plunder, and "security" at home, i.e. the police state, in case any American citizens get uppity and try to challenge corporate power at home. Your job is to go to work, pay your taxes, but don't expect anything back for those taxes. You have streets to drive on, cops to maintain order. That's it.

    Good reads:

  • Picking Up After -- The refreshingly intelligent and always articulate Molly Ivins writes on the "Wreckage of the Bush Administration". "Looking at the wreckage of the Bush administration leaves one with the depressed query, 'Now what?' The only help to the country that can come from this ugly and spectacular crack-up is, in theory, things can't get worse. This administration is so discredited it cannot talk the country into an unnecessary war with Iran as it did with Iraq. In theory, spending is so out of control it cannot cut taxes for the rich again; the fiscal irresponsibility of the Bushies is already among its lasting legacies."

    May 20, 2006

  • Barely "Fit to Print" -- The vote fraud conviction of a senior Bush official barely surfaced in the New York Times. According to Todd Gitlin writing on TPM Cafe, "Outside New Hampshire, former Repub honcho James Tobin's sentence of 10 months in prison and a $10,000 fine, announced yesterday, didn't rate more than an inch in the NYT's national briefs box today. Papers used the AP bare-bones report. Reuters has a fuller report. But none of the coverage mentions Abramoff's Indian tribes and their generous support of the phone-jamming scheme."
  • Across the Atlantic it rated more attention. Reuters report said, "A senior official in U.S. President George W. Bush's re-election campaign was sentenced to 10 months in prison on Wednesday for his role in suppressing votes in a key U.S. Senate race, a scandal that Democrats charge may involve the White House... Democrats want an investigation into 22 telephone calls made by Tobin and New Hampshire Republican Party officials to the White House on November 5 and 6, 2002, and say they believe national Republican officials may be involved in the scheme."
  • No Rush to Impeachment -- John Conyers
  • How Would It Look? If the video released of the Pentagon explosion showed a plane? Prison Planet. And more discussion at Prison Planet and Team Liberty
  • More on the Possible Rove Indictment -- Talk Left

    May 21, 2006

  • Conference -- For information on the conference called "9/11: Revealing the Truth, Reclaiming Our Future" in Chicago on June 2 -4. For information, see 911revealingthetruth.org
  • Malloy's Take -- Air America's Mike Malloy on the release of the new/not-new video released by the Pentagon of the plane/not-plane hitting the center of the world's most massive military system. Malloy: Pardon me while I take a tissue to my glasses and look at this "video" again. Uh-huh. Indeed. A commercial jet flying, um, what? twenty inches off the ground, maybe? Zips into the Pentagon. Boom. Big ball o' fire... The right-wing crazy who heads Judicial Watch, Tom Fitton, says he hopes this puts to rest all the goofy conspiracy theories, you know, the ones that include the insistence it was not a commercial jet that slammed into the Pentagon; the theories that say the awful events that day were part of a larger situation having nothing to do with what instantaneously became the official story, the story we all are to accept without doubt, without question. Because, you know, the Bush Crime Family would never, ever lie. All those honorable people who continue to infest the executive branch of the US Government would never, ever tell us something that wasn't true; would never, ever try to manipulate us into, oh, what? a war maybe? Into believing a story involving the utter defeat of the most sophisticated, militarized society in the history of mankind by nineteen guys with box-cutters? Well, there you have it. The video. The one showing the commercial jet slamming into the Pentagon. On September 11, 2001. We can all go home now. The movie's over.
  • Don't Forget the Katrina Victims -- Three thousand made homeless in Mississippi by Hurricane Katrina are now being evicted by FEMA, saying they are "ineligible". LA Times
  • The Latest Round Up -- As the Bush-Cheney administration continues to gear up its police state, it's now focusing on jailing immmigrants. The Nazis started with mental defectives, Gypsies, then moved on to Jews. This administration has rounded up suspected "enemy combatants" or "terrorists", is now expanding to immigrants. And now its seeking money to provide 35,000 more jail beds. Newsday
  • National Security State Times -- According to media analyst Norman Solomon, "People talk about Fox News and it is a Rupert Murdoch-owned conduit for rightwing propaganda, but really the New York Times, an ostensibly liberal newspaper, will deserve more credit, if you will, for helping to drag the US into war. When they discovered that the WMD (weapons of mass destruction) story was a complete fantasy perpetuated by the Rove-Cheney-Bush administration, you had this belated mea culpa. They said, 'we fell for it. ' Well, they didn't fall for it, they jumped for it. There was an eagerness on the front page to make this case of WMD under Saddam Hussein's control. And also, why would the New York Times' top editors put themselves in the same category as the government? I thought that was very revealing. They view themselves as integral to the national security state and so their capacity and inclination to scrutinize what is coming out of the White House are very hobbled." Athens News
  • McCain Gets His -- The president of the New School of Social Research, former Senator Bob Kerry, invited John McCain to speak at commencement right after he finished speaking at Jerry Falwell's university. Many students and faculty objected to McCain, an avid supporter of Bush and the Iraq War, using their school as a platform for his run for the presidency, but Kerrey ignored their complaints. Then when the event happened, the frustration and anger exploded. The Nation, Yahoo

    May 22, 2006

  • The Worst -- Senator John Edwards says Bush is the worst president in our lifetime. ABC
  • Bush Ugh! -- According to polls, Americans don't like President Bush personally much anymore either. RealCities
  • Bush Breaks Tax Hike Pledge -- And whose taxes does he raise? Teenagers. AOL
  • Big Chill -- Attorney General Gonzales, the man who told Congress the Geneva Conventions were "quaint" and no longer adequate for the Bush administration's endless war, is now threatening to prosecute reporters who report leaks, while ignoring leaks if they come from Bush or Cheney. And he says he will tap reporters phones in pursuit of them. Yahoo
  • Conservatives Fed Up -- "Richard Viguerie, who was instrumental in cementing the winning coalitions behind Ronald Reagan in 1980 and George W. Bush in 2000, declared that conservatives were 'downright fed up' with both the president and Republican-controlled Congress." Yahoo

    May 23, 2006

    Worlds in Collision

    Loose Change Tops the Charts

    Here's a glimpse of the growing gap between reality and the fantasy that is enforced as the official reality. According to Google's Video Ranking, Dylan Avery's Loose Change is the number one video on the Internet and has been for a while.

    Loose Change, the film by a 20-something filmmaker that questions the conclusions of the official story of 9/11 and concludes it was psychological warfare against the population that was carried out with military precision and could not possibly have been carried out by 19 Arabs with boxcutters. In short, it was an inside job. In today's official culture this is an extremely radical position, so much so that the proposition almost never appears in any established publication.

    It's a remarkable accomplishment for any video to rise to the top of the heap of the World Wide Web. It's particularly striking that Loose Change did.

    The reigning belief is that it is forbidden to even ask questions about what happened that day. It is sternly forbidden to question even one part of the official story. It is the act of questioning itself that is forbidden. Anyone who dares to divert from the official line is labeled a lunatic. But with a film like Loose Change at number one it becomes almost obligatory for the conventional Big Media organs to somehow confront that fact. We see an example of that in a recent article in USA Today: "Conspiracy film rewrites Sept. 11".

    Those who write off all alternative explanations as "conspiracy theory" often say something to the effect that "anyone who disagrees with the contentions of the conspiracy theorists becomes to them part of the coverup." Certainly that is characteristic of a certain sort of paranoid, cultish frame of mind. But it is not necessarily applicable to every person who questions the official story of 9/11.

    The story was delivered complete to the public via the mass media within the first few hours after the attacks, when Americans were rattled to the depths of their being by one of the most spectacularly horrific events in American history. The whole event was beyond belief, so how could one fault any explanation as being unbelievable? The official explanation, that 19 Arabs directed by a man in a cave in Afghanistan pulled off the whole dazzling operation, the perfect synchronizing of three suicidal air attacks within about an hour in different cities. It included defying history and physics by collapsing three buildings perfectly into their footprints, the first ever steel skyscrapers to be brought down by fires, including one that was not even hit by a plane and had only small fires in it. It meant somehow something rendering the entire military defense system of the United States helpless and paralyzed for hours.

    Never mind, it was the explanation given. It was given by those in authority and people badly needed something to believe in. And the Bush administration saw to it that no one questioned the original explanation much, trying to enforce a rule of "no investigations" until they finally could hold out no longer and gave into pressure put together a committee that they essentially had veto power over.

    If one -- if any of the thousands who are apparently now looking at Loose Change -- raises questions, it doesn't mean he or she is a paranoid cultist, or "conspiracy theorist" (remember, the official theory is a conspiracy theory). And when anyone resists the questions it does not mean that they are knowingly part of a coverup. There is a tremendous pressure on holding onto those official explanations, because if that system of thinking begins to give way, it is very frightening where it will lead.

    Even those who most ardently question the official explanation must share some of the dread of having the whole truth really unravel and having to face it. The implications of what may have happened that day -- what much of the evidence might indicate -- could be world-shattering.

    But to many, and perhaps to the universal unconscious of humanity, the compulsion to seek the truth is stronger than the fear of having to face the shattering of one's world. So the forces that try to restrain inquiry are not necessarily conspirators as much as they are frightened people, afraid of looking at an alternative explanation that threatens their very sanity.

    USA Today is part of the system of conventional thinking that rules the country, that transmits the established cultural zeitgeist and never introduces information that threatens it at its core. Dylan Avery and Loose Change are not. Loose Change has risen to such prominence in the popular culture that USA Today must somehow acknowledge it. Of course in doing so it intends to debunk it. It's interesting to see how it does that.

    The article attempts to find an explanation for why the film is so popular, while still maintaining that it is bunk. "Professors and researchers of film and politics say the Internet is making it far easier to spread such theories because the traditional media are losing their hold on the news." It's always good to bring experts in -- albeit unnamed -- to support one's thesis. "Professors and researchers", that has a good sound.

    "Most of what the film alleges is refuted by the evidence at hand," the article says, without offering any support for it. That's a little like a taunting pre-teen saying, "I could lick you." It's saying, "I could defeat your argument," but not attempting to actually do it. Because it is the established media addressing one that is anything but established, it proceeds as if it has the luxury of making any claim it wants and not backing it up. A step-by-step refutation would be much more credible than just a claim that one is possible. But how can you present an argument when your position is that the questions should not be asked in the first place?

    The USA Today article makes another claim that may be more interesting than it is meant to be. It quotes sociologist Clifton Bryant of Virginia Tech University as saying, "People believe in conspiracy theories because the truth 'is either too simple or too remote.'" Considering the inescapable fact that the official explanation is a wild conspiracy theory, this might be applied aptly to those who believe the official story.

    Bryant's quote that "We're always ready to believe something about which we know nothing," is also revealing. About which we know nothing? Isn't that Dylan Avery's contention? The official position is that everything about 9/11 is known and adequately explained and there is no room for doubt. Even in trying to debunk the film, USA seems to be inadvertently bolstering it. A very curious state of affairs.

    Could the rise of Loose Change possibly indicate an imminent societal paradigm change that could wipe away the established order? Could this be analogous to the fall of the Berlin Wall that was widely touted as the "end of history"?

    The dismantling of the Berlin Wall was not an official act, it was a popular movement. It came up from the streets. In the US media, credit for it was quickly assigned to Reagan and Bush, but the Evil Empire fell of its own weight. The popular movements deserve more credit than the geopolitical games of the leaders, who were strikingly similar on both sides, playing by the same rules for the same objectives, accepting the same inherent cultural framework of empire. (And the major powers are still strikingly similar in these attributes. See "Amnesty International releases report condemning human rights abuses of Russia, China and the U.S.")

    Perhaps it is premature to compare the present sociopolitical movements with the collapse of the Soviet Bloc, but what we are seeing in the US now is similarly dramatic, and it is possible that the US empire is also caving in on its own weight. These are extremely interesting days.

    Meanwhile, in other news...

  • Republicans are losing their base. LA Times
  • Clueless -- Bush, asked why 70% of Americans don't approve of the job he's doing, says they are "just unsettled". Watch it on video at thinkprogress.org
  • The Washington Post says, "Confronting the worst poll numbers seen in the West Wing since his father went down to defeat, President Bush and his team are focusing on the fall midterm elections as the best chance to salvage his presidency and are building a campaign strategy around tax cuts, immigration and national security. Modern history offers no precedent of a president climbing from a hole as deep as the one Bush finds himself in, and White House strategists have concluded that no staff shake-up or other quick fix will alter their trajectory.
  • Prison Nation -- Prisons and jails added more than 1,000 inmates each week for a year, putting almost 2.2 million people, or one in every 136 U.S. residents, behind bars by last summer. ABC News
  • Dixie Chicks Withdraw Apology -- "I apologized for disrespecting the office of the President," said Natalie Maines. "But I don't feel that way anymore. I don't feel he is owed any respect whatsoever." rawstory.com
  • Republican vulnerability in House races may be growing -- "Andrew Kohut, a pollster who is the director of the Pew Research Center, said the public was as unhappy with Congress as at any time in the history of the Pew Poll, and that a third of those polled in his most recent survey said they would use their congressional vote as an opportunity to vote against Bush, which is precisely the way Democrats have been trying to frame this election." deseretnews.com
  • The National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration predicted this year's North Atlantic hurricane season will be "very active," spawning eight to 10 hurricanes, the U.S.-based National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Monday. "Last year's early hurricane season forecast from NOAA failed to foresee that 2005 would be one of the most intense hurricane seasons ever. However, an update issued in mid-August was much more accurate. It warned that a high number of powerful storms would develop in the Caribbean and along the eastern coast of North America. 'The forecasts that we're seeing are calling for numbers that are about double the average of the past 50 years,' Steve Miller of the Canadian Hurricane Centre told CBC News at the time. 'Normally we'd get about 10. This year, the forecast is averaging 20 or even higher.'" CBC

    May 25, 2006

    Whew! Things are flying fast and furiously now. Of course the corporate media channels are spraying more stuff than ever in an attempt to drown out what is really happening. Like the alleged Osama bin Laden video that recently got front page coverage in all the Dumb Media. I am innocent of any knowledge of this, not having clicked on the links yet. I did see one report, perhaps on AOL, that acknowledged that the authenticity of the tape was not possible to confirm. It sounded pretty phony to me as most of those things do, and I supposed it was probably really carrying another message from the overt one, something implicit that the surface message carries as baggage and delivers silently.

    My suspicion was that the real message was for Osama bin Laden, the fictional villain of the "War on Terror", to proclaim that indeed he and "19 brothers" pulled off the 9/11 operation. It's a proposition that is increasingly in doubt for Americans. Is the Osama video real? Has he signed a deal with Warner? Is there a drum track? Is it Osama I or Osama II. Is it the guy in the video that was claimed to be Osama a couple of years ago, but clearly was not the guy in all the photos we had been shown up until them. "Small Change", the film, shows and analyzes that footage, in case your memory fades after being exposed to 30 billion more images since that one.

    Those troubling questions about 9/11 are starting to seep into the armed camp known as the United States. Some of those ideas are hard to shake. Once the doubt has been introduced, with a particularly flagrant violation of logic well presented, it takes hold in the mind and grows.

    Observable metrics are bursting through the media wall, the large number of people seeing the film Loose Change, polls that show a majority want a new investigation of 9/11, polls that say a majority think don't think the Iraq war ever should have been embarked on in the first place. The oligarchy needs some good distractions for its dog-people.

    And here are some of the things they don't want you to think about:

  • Is Dead-Eye Dick Really the Villain? According to PrisonPlanet.com, "The former head of the Star Wars missile defense program under Presidents Ford and Carter has gone public to say that the official version of 9/11 is a conspiracy theory and his main suspect for the architect of the attack is Vice President Dick Cheney." Now that is something to think about. You can read about his reasons at PrisonPlanet.com. Here's one: "Bowman outlined how the drills on the morning of 9/11 that simulated planes crashing into buildings on the east coast were used as a cover to dupe unwitting air defense personnel into not responding quickly enough to stop the attack. 'The exercises that went on that morning simulating the exact kind of thing that was happening so confused the people in the FAA and NORAD....that they didn't know what was real and what was part of the exercise,' said Bowman. 'I think the people who planned and carried out those exercises, they're the ones that should be the object of investigation.'"
  • A Very Serious Matter -- This is a very intense, serious, clear report on the "Top Ten Signs of the Impending U.S. Police State". Read this if you dare: buffalobeast.com
  • In a Zogby poll, 42% of Americans believe in a 9/11 coverup. 911blogger.com.
  • Good Film -- And essay about how election 2004 was stolen. huffingtonpost.com

    May 31, 2006

  • An ominous, offensive Supreme Court decision today, something that affirms the outrageous corruption and injustice of the Bush administration. The Supreme Court, with Bush's newest crony judge Alito casting the deciding vote, ruled that people who bring illegal activity in government to light cannot be protected against being fired in retaliation for exposing the crimes. William Kennedy, the supposed "liberal" judge, who wrote the majority decision, proclaimed that although exposing government misconduct may be important, "We reject, however, the notion that the First Amendment shields from discipline the expressions employees make pursuant to their professional duties," Kennedy said. (SF Gate) The crux of the matter is that we are talking about illegal or improper behavior among office holders, trustees of the people. A government employee may be an employee, but he is also a citizen, and as a citizen the government is his, is accountable to him and to the laws of the land. This ruling puts power over justice. He who is in power cannot be taken to task for illegal activity, and if he retaliates against those who expose him, he cannot be held accountable for that either. It's an ugly, anti-democratic, royalist ruling and should be struck down. And maybe it will be if we ever restore constitutional government in this country and put public officials in office who really see themselves as the servants of the people, not their masters -- or the errand boys of the real masters. This decision only shows what democracy is up against. These corporate elitists are reshaping this country into an hierarchical, undemocratic society. (See also Mercury News, GovExec.com,
  • Bush's Enron Lies
  • Jamming Democracy -- How high in the party power structure did the Republicansí New Hampshire phone-jamming scheme reach? In These Times
  • On Memorial Day, Bush said the way to honor the war dead is by making more of them. Stay the course, he babbles. The idiotic, pointless course. For what? What are they fighting for? Forbes: "Bush Says U.S. Must Honor War Dead" "The best way to pay respect is to value why a sacrifice was made," Bush said.
  • Supreme Arrogance -- According to the Concord Monitor, "A major figure in the Election Day phone-jamming scandal that embarrassed and nearly bankrupted the New Hampshire GOP is out of prison and back in the political game. Charles McGee, the former executive director of the state Republican Party, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and served seven months for his part in the scheme to have a telemarketer tie up Democratic and union phone lines in 2002. He's back at his old job with a Republican political marketing firm, Spectrum Monthly & Printing Inc., and will be helping out at the firm's 'GOP campaign school' for candidates."
  • Remember Vote Fraud -- Op Ed News
  • How'd I Get Here? Though he has designed his career as a correction of his father's, Bush is now down in the hole his father got into. The tactics may be different, but the underlying criminality is the same. Seattle PI
  • Healing Force -- A study shows that music can reduce chronic pain. BBC

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