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Bill Bodden

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  • 5 Top Reasons Romney ought to have Withdrawn
    • ...Romney did an about face and condemned the idea of universal health care coverage. He was just pandering to the Tea Party...

      Despite the fact that Romney was a politician it was astounding to watch how much he could talk out of both sides of his mouth in 2014.

      As Andrew Levine said of Romney, "... no one, not even Romney himself, knows what his politics are ..." "Sympathy for Obama?: The President's Republican Problem and My Own" by ANDREW LEVINE - link to counterpunch.org

  • Netanyahu & Boehner: How Israel went from being a Democratic to a Republican Project
    • The audacity of Speaker of the House John Boehner colluding with the prime minister of a foreign country to undermine a sitting president is, I think, still not entirely appreciated.

      But not surprising. Perhaps instead of charging Boehner with audacity he should be charged with bungling incompetence.

      On the other hand, the White House and Congress have colluded with Israel in its treating the United States with contempt for decades. "Benjamin Netanyahu: the Anti-American Obstructionist: Has He Gone Too Far This Time?" by MELVIN A. GOODMAN link to counterpunch.org

  • Yemen: Freeze on US Drone Strikes as Gov't Collapses
  • Netanyahu Imported by GOP to ensure Iran War
    • "Netanyahu and ‘the Big Lie’: Is the World Finally Losing Patience With Israel?" by ROBERT FANTINA link to counterpunch.org

      And this is the person Congress will grovel before in February?

    • When Senator Lindsey Graham, a senior Republican senator, goes to Jerusalem and tells the leader of another country with an illegal nuclear arsenal: “I’m here to tell you, Mr. Prime Minister, that the Congress will follow your lead…”

      And when almost everyone in Congress gives the Israeli Prime Minister 29 standing ovations and endorses the recent mass slaughter on Gaza it looks like we now have a fourth branch of government.

    • Let Bibi speak so it’s all in the open that Republicans want war.

      And they will be aided and abetted by enough Democrats subservient to Israel's Mephistopheles.

    • When Senator Lindsey Graham, a senior Republican senator, goes to Jerusalem and tells the leader of another country with an illegal nuclear arsenal: “I’m here to tell you, Mr. Prime Minister, that the Congress will follow your lead…” [on Iran] , link to dictionary.cambridge.org then it is no surprise that Republican Majority leader asks Netanyahu to address a join session of Congress to issue his marching orders, with probably another 29 standing ovations as he received the last time he addressed Congress.

      There in one short paragraph is unequivocal evidence of severe moral and political decline of Congress and the American people who keep reelecting these wretches.

    • The reason for bringing Netanyahu is that Boehner wants to craft a super-majority in Congress that can over-ride Obama’s veto of new sanctions on Iran. He doesn’t have enough Republican votes to do so, but if he can get Democrats beholden to the Israel lobbies of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee to join the veto over-ride effort, he might succeed.

      Getting those Democratic (not democratic) votes shouldn't be a problem for Boehner when we consider how every senator and all but very few representatives endorsed Israel's latest slaughter on Gaza.

  • Obama to GOP: More Iran sanctions lead to War (& 7 other Foreign Policy points in SOTU)
    • It looks like I made the right choice in ignoring Obama's speech: "Progressive Voices Cut Through Fog of Obama's State of the Union: For the sixth time of his presidency, Obama offered his assessment of the nation and lays out his vision for future policy, but voices on the Left had a few things to say as well." By Common Dreams staff link to commondreams.org

    • Obama is taking a hard line here against AIPAC and the Israel lobbies, which are influential both with Republicans and Democrats in Congress.

      And the Republicans (with probable support of right-wing Democrats) are taking a hard line against Obama by inviting Netanyahu to address Congress on Iran in February when all but very, very few senators and representatives will bounce up and down like trained seals in a circus to applaud Netanyahu's bellicosity.

  • Why Martin Luther King would support Pres. Obama's Tax on Super-Rich
    • Beyond the US on the global stage: "Richest 1% will own more than all the rest by 2016" - link to oxfam.org

      Meanwhile, at daily rituals senators and representatives in Congress piously recite "... one nation, ...., indivisible, with liberty and justice for all" after which they proceed to divide with an attitude that relegates "others" to the status of untermenschen.

  • Amazing Green Cars at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show
  • Top 7 Things to know about Belgium anti-terror Op that left 2 Dead
    • If Saudi-Wahabbi money is funding these terrorists, why are the leaders of the threatened nations going after the dupes and jihadists and not the sponsors?

    • Verviers is one of the towns in Belgium that has a large number of Muslims, with many of the young men in that community being unemployed.

      Among the more responsible commentators discussing the recent violence in Paris is a common theme that poverty and discrimination are prime motivators for such violence.

      Aristotle advised more than two millennia ago that poverty is the parent of crime and revolution. Some lessons seem to take a long time to sink in while our current version of capitalism is engaged in creating more poverty.

  • Will France intervene in Yemen after its al-Qaeda Claims Paris Attacks?
    • Perhaps France can apply some of the lessons it should have learned from Algeria.

  • Twitter mirth after Steve Emerson's Fox Nonsense re: Birmingham as Muslim 'no-go' Zone
    • "Inside the British ‘caliphate’: It’s fantastic, Mr. Fox!: Al Jazeera America went to Birmingham to investigate claims it had become an Islamic state within a state" by Omar Waraich - link to america.aljazeera.com

    • And, what does it say about the Faux Newz anchor who was apparently soaking up this nonsense and encouraging Emerson in his drivel?

    • Much worse than the meretricious claptrap out of Emerson and his ilk is the gullibility of so many people who believe them.

  • Paris Rally: Charlie Hebdo Team regret not Parading Caricatures of Hypocritical World Leaders
    • Surely Saudi Arabia must be on the short list for the most hypocritical nation represented at the rally given a non-violent activist received the first 50 of an ordered thousand lashes two days before in Saudi Arabia for a mild expression of political dissent.

  • After Paris attacks, could David Duke style Racist Parties Sweep to Power in Europe?
  • Yes, they're Condemning the Paris Attacks: The Muslims' War on Terror
    • Bonjour, PATRIOT ACT: It appears that some in France are interested in repeating our mistakes: “« Le Patriot Act à la française, on n’en est pas loin »”
      link to lemonde.fr

    • If the pen is mightier than the sword, why use it as a sword?

    • People who are hostile to religion might find indifference more effective and less disruptive than confrontation.

    • History will always give more reasons for hate.

      History gives some people reasons to hate and a knowledge of history gives others insight into why they hate. Unfortunately, in the West too many leaders and the led are deficient in historical knowledge with the consequence that mistakes are repeated. In some cases, it appears some leaders probably know enough history but they don't seem to give a damn about who might suffer.

    • This probably won't pass the moderator's scrutiny, but I would remiss if I didn't try:

      Why I am not Charlie by Scott Lang - link to mondoweiss.net

      On satire – a response to the Charlie Hebdo attacks The acclaimed graphic artist and journalist Joe Sacco on the limits of satire – and what it means if Muslims don’t find it funny by Joe Sacco - link to theguardian.com

    • Excellent commentary with evidence of how people are using double standards when it comes to freedom of speech.

    • Robert Fisk, as usual, has important insights:

      "Paris attack brothers' campaign of terror can be traced back to Algeria in 1954: Algeria is the post-colonial wound that still bleeds in France" by Robert Fisk - link to independent.co.uk ... "Maybe all newspaper and television reports should carry a “history corner”, a little reminder that nothing – absolutely zilch – happens without a past. Massacres, bloodletting, fury, sorrow, police hunts (“widening” or “narrowing” as sub-editors wish) take the headlines. Always it’s the “who” and the “how” – but rarely the “why”. Take the crime against humanity in Paris this week – the words “atrocity” and “barbarity” somehow diminish the savagery of this act – and its immediate aftermath."

    • Killing the Charlie Hebdo killers also denies them a chance to explain why they killed. This is not to say they were justified in their slaughter, but if abuse of fellow Arabs was motivation then the abusers would prefer their own crimes were not given international publicity.

    • When American commentators like Carl Bernstein complain that Muslim authorities have not sufficiently denounced the terrorist attack on the Charlie Hebdo staff in Paris, ...

      It might help if American commentators like Carl Bernstein denounced the terrorist attacks by drones and other means in Yemen, Pakistan, Gaza, Iran and other related areas in the Middle East.

  • Paris Terrorist was Radicalized by Bush's Iraq War, Abu Ghraib Torture
    • "Charlie Hebdo: Classmates protest innocence of suspect Hamyd Mourad, 18, with school alibi: The student is believed to have handed himself to the police" by Lamiat Sabin - link to independent.co.uk

    • In promoting his new hero, Clint Eastwood appears to not be persuaded by Chalmers Johnson's theories of blowback.

      "How Clint Eastwood Ignores History in ‘American Sniper’: The film makes no attempt to tell us anything beyond Chris Kyle’s limited comprehension of what was happening in Iraq. But a war movie that is true of one American’s experience can be utterly false to the experience of millions of Iraqis and to the historical record." By Peter Maass - link to firstlook.org
      :

    • Which white man gets the credit for Rachid’s career?

      Probably, Rachid is more suited to answering that question, but if he is honest he (like most of us) most likely could name several people who helped along the way. Presumably, the founders of Microsoft and Google had some input. I'm white, but I acknowledge that many people of different races helped me along the way.

    • Blowback was created by ALL who participated in that war.

  • Whatever Happened to besieged Kurdish City of Kobane, Syria?
  • What would Happen if the Int'l Criminal Court Indicted Israel's Netanyahu?
    • If the US Supreme (?) Court (and others) can get it wrong (e.g., Citizens United, etc.) through a majority influenced by ideological friends, there is no reason to believe the ICC would be immune to unethical persuasions.

    • ... absolutely no sway over the ICC.?

      It is a good bet the US does and could have sway over the ICC through pressure on intermediaries who do.

    • If the consequences of Israeli and Hamas attacks were factors in sentencing, the penalties would be vastly different.

    • If the ICC works in the same way as our justice (sic) department, Netanyahu and his accomplices have nothing to worry about; however, given outbursts of antisemitism in some nations they may have to check with a good travel agent as to where it would be safe to go and not.

  • President Obama's Biggest Mideast Policy Challenges, 2015
    • policies pushed by liberal interventionist like Susan Rice and Samantha Powers

      Make that " policies pushed by NEOLIBERAL interventionists like Susan Rice and Samantha Powers"

    • WHAT national interest of the US is served by doing this?

      Wars that are not fought for defense are ever in the "national interest." As Smedley Butler said war is a racket for businesses. As some wit said, if Iraq raised broccoli instead of producing oil the Bush administration would never have attacked it.

    • But that is a slim reed, and it seems likely that the resolution of this conflict (Israel-Palestine) is no longer in US hands.

      Was it ever?

  • Palestinians ready next Move as UNSC rejects end of Occupation
    • Unfortunately, the United States abuses its power so that those and other international laws are for other not-favored nations to obey while the ruling oligarchs that run the nation regard them with indifference. Similarly, these authoritarians pick and choose which parts of the US Constitution they will heed or ignore or that others must adhere to even if they don't.

    • Thus Israel can get away with collective punishment which advances the ethnic cleansing agenda.

      In great part because of the moral deficiencies of the political courtesans (aka politicians) who have sold their souls to Israel's Mephistopheles.

    • The world is not going to put up with this situation in Palestine for much longer.

      That is extremely difficult to believe, but for the sake of justice for the Palestinians we can only hope it will some day prove to be true. Since the United States has abdicated its role of moral leadership for the world, who will take its place?

  • GOP Figures used racist Ape imagery for Obama before North Korea did
    • The enemy within was a theme promoted during the McCarthy witch hunt era. In a different context and in a new era, people who believe the essence of America consists of all people being equal with a right to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and justice have many enemies within.

  • Why Kim Jong-Un was Really afraid of "The Interview:" A Humiliation Romp, not an Assassination Flick
    • Bad taste may be one of America’s great gifts to comedy and rather then bemoan it, we should celebrate it.

      For some reason, perhaps a generational and experience divide, Orwell comes to mind.

  • Top 7 Ways Assassination Fails USA as Policy
    • There is an old Chinese proverb: "He who strikes the first blow admits he's lost the argument."

      There is another way of phrasing this: He/She who resorts to violence concedes to being of inferior intelligence.

    • How about all the other ways by which the US government offends people around the world? Gore Vidal managed to write a book about this: Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace: How We Got To Be So Hated.

  • Cuba: Top 5 other Dictatorships with which US has Diplomatic Relations
    • Add to these dictatorships the accomplices in the CIA's torture program.

    • But the US can do what you criticize because we are "exceptional" and talking out of both sides of our mouths is a national tradition from before the US was a nation.

    • There is also the probability of more business for Corporate America: "The Problem With Obama’s Cuba Speech: The Imperialist Mindset" by MATT PEPPE - link to counterpunch.org

  • Desperate Pakistani Taliban, on the ropes, attack Army School in Peshawar: Large scale Casualties
    • It appears that my first comment on this slaughter was too blunt for your moderator, so allow me to tone it down. How does this event in Pakistan compare with Operation Protective Edge in Gaza in July? Is there a consistency in assessments regarding both tragedies or are double standards being applied?

  • Enter the Dragon: China offers Iraq Aerial Strikes on ISIL/ Daesh
    • (In short, China) is beginning to behave like a classic capitalist imperial country, intervening with military force to protect investments, markets and trade routes.

      Add that to the other immutables of the human condition - death and taxes.

  • Top 5 Planks of 2016 GOP Platform? Torture, War, Bank Corruption, Paid-For Elections
    • 390: Where do you get your meretricious nonsense about my attacking blacks? Your reference to blacks is the only one on this thread. As for the rest of your comments, they strike me as just making a case for accepting the sordid status quo. I recently read a history of WWI. The anti-war group had next to no impact, but they tried to inject some sanity into European thought. Acceptors of the system helped to facilitate that monstrous disaster, just as their modern counterparts will help create descent into another hell.

      I may very likely be on the "losing" side, but I'll be in the best company possible..

    • Where did you get your meretricious nonsense about "being elected"? The original comment referred to the POPULARITY of Hillary. That is what I referred to having in mind the support Gonzales got from La Raza and other Latino organizations?

    • Hillary may get challenged but she is also VERY popular with Latinos.

      So was Alberto Gonzales for Attorney General of the United States.

    • This is just another skid down the slippery slope of the Empire's decline and probable fall. But don't look for Elizabeth Warren to come to the rescue:

      "Reality, Politics and Elizabeth Warren: The Dark Side of the Liberals' Darling" by ROBERT FANTINA - link to counterpunch.org

      The system is already on life support, and the quacks are running the emergency room:

      "How We Lost Our “Freedom”: And Why We Need It Back" by ANDREW LEVINE - link to counterpunch.org

  • The Trial of Richard Bruce Cheney
    • And if there are no prosecutions it will be additional confirmation that the oaths of office taken by the responsible officials and elected politicians are meaningless.

    • And Cheney's accomplices? A sizable portion of the American people - most Republicans and many Democrats.

  • Israel, Egypt Implicated in Torture: Middle East Reactions to Senate Report lament own Involvement
    • When it became obvious Mubarak was out reports indicated Hillary Clinton wanted General Suleiman to replace him.

      "Hillary Clinton Signals US Backing for Omar Suleiman: US secretary of state stresses need for orderly transition headed by vice-president" by Julian Borger in Munich - link to commondreams.org and "Death of Suleiman: Egypt's revolution outlives its torturers: Mubarak's former spy chief and deputy was a divisive figure, and a stalwart of the former administration." By Omar Ashour - link to aljazeera.com

    • Wolf Blitzer was stoking the fire on possible retaliation and putting American lives in danger this morning. As if this latest expose of the CIA's obscene practices was news to politically active people in the Middle East.

  • Why the Founding Fathers thought banning Torture Foundational to the US Constitution
    • But that was victors' justice. Justice is not a factor when the victor and the violator are one and the same.

    • And, while the torturers go free whistleblower John Kiriakou is in prison.

    • “There is nothing I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This in my humble apprehension is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under the constitution.” John Adams

      Given our ruling duopoly of Democratic and Republican oligarchs, no problem there, John. RIP

  • GOP Squirms at Release of CIA Torture Report, warns of "Violence" (So why did they Torture?)
    • "It is our indignation, not that of the Arab world, that torturers fear. We are the bad guys too: The Muslim world has been enraged about these crimes for years by Robert Fisk - link to independent.co.uk

    • Our national heros should be the courageous whistleblowers: those in government, the military, the media and public citizens.

      The media: CNN and, presumably, other platoons in the fawning corporate media seem to be on the side of the apologists for the CIA with Blitz Wolfer feeding friends of enhanced interrogation softball questions.

      No surprise there

    • Amnesty International and a UN rapporteur thought the treatment Bradley/Chelsea Manning received at the Quantico Marine brig looked like torture. President Obama thought it was "appropriate."

      "UN torture representative suggests White House stalling his private meeting with American soldier" link to guardian.co.uk

    • Joe, you and countless Americans continue to prove that hope springs eternal. Lotsaluck on that one.

  • Top 5 ways US treatment of African-Americans resembles Apartheid South Africa
    • We have identified two problems with police brutality: racism and authoritarianism. Among many other problems there is a third primary problem - the silence of our "good Americans."

    • There is nothing new here about NYPD abuse of power:

      2004: "Republican National Convention Protesters To Receive $18 Million Settlement For New York City Arrests (PHOTOS)" - link to huffingtonpost.com

      2011: "14 Specific Allegations of NYPD Brutality During Occupy Wall Street" by Conor Friedersdorf - link to theatlantic.com

      Police brutality has been a fact of life across this nation for generations. Look back to the early 1900s when they served as strikebreakers in Detroit, the San Francisco waterfront (1934) and many other places. An abuse of power that obviously continues to this day and will be repeated tomorrow.

    • The CIA torture report currently agitating the senate intelligence (sic) committee and the CIA should provide additional evidence of authoritarian abuse and racism in government.

    • This authoritarian and aggressive attitude among police is not unique towards people of color. During my career with the merchant marine white shipmates came to regard Los Angeles and San Diego area ports with an apprehension similar to that of motorists driving in the South who were aware of the prevalence of speed traps. In social situations I have had cops and former cops talk about abuse of white prisoners. Then there is the persecution of whistleblowers while the criminals they expose go free.

    • While we must pay attention to the racism aspects involved in American society it is important that we also pay attention to the authoritarianism that is also prevalent. (The recent comments critical of blacks by other blacks - e.g.; Cosby, Barkley, Carson - are an example.) This combination of racism and authoritarianism is not unique to the United States. It appears to be becoming more of a problem in Europe.

  • Putin, Blocked by Europe, turns to Turkey for Gas Pipeline
    • Neocons and the Ukraine coup: Exclusive: American neocons helped destabilize Ukraine and engineer the overthrow of its elected government, a “regime change” on Russia’s western border. But the coup – and the neo-Nazi militias at the forefront – also reveal divisions within the Obama administration, reports Robert Parry. - link to consortiumnews.com

      Ultranationalist neo-Nazi parties on the march in Ukraine: Threat of anti-Semitic violence should cause international alarm by John Bachelor - link to america.aljazeera.com

      The neo-Nazis of Ukraine: Out of control by Paul Craig Roberts - link to counterpunch.org

    • “No matter what our Western counterparts tell us, we can see what’s going on. NATO is blatantly building up its forces in Eastern Europe, including the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea areas. Its operational and combat training activities are gaining in scale.” – Russian President Vladimir Putin link to counterpunch.org

      Apparently, and understandably, Putin doesn't appear to be inclined to turn the other cheek that our neocon warmongers would quickly clobber with a two-by-four or a guided missile.

  • Cairo Erupts as Mubarak, Adly Declared Innocent in Deaths of Protesters
    • The Nuremberg trials mentioned by another commenter have nothing to do with the American Justice System. That was a military tribunal of the Allied Forces–military justice–its a different apple.

      Nuremberg had a military component, but to say it was a military tribunal is stretching a point. The judges and others were civilians. The "American Justice System" - whatever that is - was a factor through the agency of Justice Robert Jackson, one of several civilians who were important factors throughout the early and major trials.

    • The Egyptian judiciary, once a trendsetter for the Arab world, is increasingly making itself a laughingstock.

      Other than the Nuremberg Trials after WWII, has there ever been a time in American history when the American justice system was an example for the world to follow? There was much to admire that came out of Nuremberg, but even there American justice was flawed because it was victors' justice. Allied lawyers, somewhat naively, proposed a long list of charges to lay against the Nazis, but many items in that list were redacted by Washington and London because the US and Brits (and the Russians) were guilty of the same crimes.

    • The bad thing about this ruling is that the judge actually argued that the charges should never have been brought against a former president for actions undertaken as part of his office.

      Like grand juries in the US: "The Secret Darkness of Grand Juries: A Broken System" by LAUREN C. REGAN - link to counterpunch.org

      The Egyptian judiciary, once a trendsetter for the Arab world, is increasingly making itself a laughingstock.

      Like its neighbor to the north or main supplier of military weapons? Not really. There is nothing funny about that pair.

  • Iran Leader Khamenei: We are not Opposed to Nuclear Talks, Will Accept Just Deal
    • "Of course we will accept any fair and reasonable agreement, ...

      So what's the problem? "Our problem is with the US government’s bullying and excessive demands…”

  • Race inequality between US Whites and African-Americans by the Numbers (Again)
    • Unfortunately for people of color around the world this inequality and its consequences are universal.

  • As SecDef Hagel Exits, an Iraq Daesh/ISIL Scorecard
    • What did he do to address all the other crap that is so terribly wrong...?

      There's lots we don't know, but chances are very good the braaasss ganged up on him in a way similar to how Betrayus and McKristol ganged up on Obama for the senseless surge in Afghanistan. Let's not forget Hagel gave the impression of favoring a diplomatic solution with Iran which set McCain and Little Abel after him at his confirmation inquisition.

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