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Total number of comments: 1228 (since 2013-11-28 14:42:39)

Bill Bodden

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  • 5 Surprising Ways Iran is better than Israel
    • Would anyone care to speculate on what Iran might have become if Mossadeq had not been overthrown by the Anglo-American coup in 1953? Less theocratic and more democratic seem to be reasonable possibilities.

  • Why Netanyahu's Congress Speech will Fail: Iran Can't be Stopped, only Monitored
    • It appears that Bibi is extremely frustrated that he is an impotent leader of a small powerless nation and is hoping that he can incite some stupid person to pick the fight he can’t.

      Bibi by himself may be an empty suit, but as a front man for the big-money, pro-Israel (legal) bribery machine he can count on many Congressional sycophants to perform like trained seals when he does his circus master act. So what does it say that that "powerless nation" is often the tail that wags the American dog and may prove to be the one to expose our national Achilles heel.

    • Netanyahu's roll call in Congress will give us a chance to determine whose side our representative and senators are on - America's or Netanyahu's.

    • ... why can’t we intervene in Israel’s?

      Because AIPAC wouldn't allow it. Congress doesn't have the option to reason why, just to donate dollars and military equipment to Israel.

  • In New Gilded Age, Social Protest dominates Academy Awards Ceremony
    • When Sean Penn made his remark it struck me as the kind of joshing remark friends make with each other, something similar to blacks using the n-word to each other on certain occasions. When Alejandro G. Inarritu accepted the Oscar on the stage he and Penn appeared to be (still) good friends.

    • But Henry A. Giroux is very critical of three movies featured at the Oscars: Hollywood Heroism: From ‘Citizenfour’ and ‘Selma’ to ‘American Sniper’ By Henry A. Giroux, Truthout - link to truthdig.com

    • Artists do not have the levers of power the way politicians do, but they can influence public opinion.

      But among the Oscars audience it was probably only a very small proportion that appreciated those progressive and forthright remarks. If I were to bet I would put my money on the vast majority of viewers being couch potatoes over whose heads those statements passed with little to no impact.

  • Giuliani & Obama: Immigrant Families and Really Loving America
    • 'Love for America’ is a pretty vague concept.

      So is love, itself. On several occasions I have read comments from hunters saying they love the animals they kill. Unfortunately, they never explain what they mean by "love."

      We would probably be better served if we went back to an ancient concept - honor, which is more easily defined. When I was a child, one of the greatest compliments that could be paid to a person was to say that his or her word was good enough to the person speaking. Can anyone name more than maybe two, three or four people in Congress you would say that to? Unfortunately, the concept of honor is all too often reduced to a meaningless label. Consider how our national leaders have demonstrated America's word is worthless. a. Treaties made with Native Americans repeatedly reneged on. b. The United States was a primary author of the United Nations Charter. It reneged on that with the war on Iraq. c. Same with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. d. Same with the Geneva Conventions. e. Same with the Nuremberg Principles. f. to zzzzzzz. Oaths of office and promises made by politicians to the American people.

    • It seems fair to conclude that whisteblowers who exposed crimes, corruption and other abuses of power in government and major corporations did so out of love for their country. So, what does that say about the people who have persecuted them and are prepared to do the same to others in the future?

    • Given the performance of elected officials in DC it would probably be judicious to question most of them on their claims to love America when we observe their votes mostly serve their campaign donors and are often at the expense of the people. The same goes for the many appointed officials who appear to be more in league with corporations (Wall Street, etc.) whose only concern is for increasing their already enormous profits. In the case of corporate executives who siphon most of the profits for themselves and leave their employees in poverty, their claims of love for America are more examples of hypocrisy. We would do well to add the mainstream media for promoting lies that lead to disastrous wars. Which brings us to the the chickenhawks who promote those wars without any risk of their butts getting near a war zone. The young and naive men and women who fall for those lies are probably among the minority of Americans who genuinely love their country.

    • Grumpy, you beat me to it and were much more thorough than I would have been. Thank you.

  • Jeb Bush on Foreign Policy: Peddling old Iraq Myths Again
    • It is fair to say JB is smart, but the problem is that he is like all of the other candidates for president who are or were part of the oligarchy, a person without a moral compass. The other part of the story is that the majority of American voters are not all that smart and not endowed with moral compasses.

    • ... is there no one in the State Department, no one in our political community, who reads Livy or Polybius anymore?

      Reading those authors could encourage state department employees to think and contradict conventional policy - a sure way to end chances of promotion.

    • If Jeb Bush wants to be president, he can't afford to tell the truth. Given that the majority of eligible voters stick with one or the other of the corrupt duopoly, character defects are of little consequence. Voters who go for the lesser evil are going to have a tough time in 2016 deciding the winner. Regardless, the United States will be the loser.

  • Avenging its Christians, Egypt Bombs Libya in first formal Campaign since 1991
    • Avenging its Christians, Egypt Bombs Libya ...

      If we note that Daesh/ISIS/ISIL clothes their intended victims before execution in Guantanamo orange jumpsuits a reasonable conclusion to draw is they are avenging others which brings to mind Gandhi's comment: "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind."

  • al-Qaeda's Feud with Denmark
    • Robert Fisk makes a valid point about talking with listed terrorists that is probably beyond the comprehension of our or Europe's leaders: "Talking offers hope of a peaceful solution. But we’re not allowed to do it: The very precautions aid agencies now take have made them objects of suspicion" by Robert Fisk - link to independent.co.uk

    • Denmark was a very socially-progressive nation after WW2. If I recall correctly the Danes voiced strong opposition to our Vietnam war. What happened since then?

  • 'American Terrorist': Middle East reacts to Murder of 3 Muslim-American Students in N Carolina
    • The gun lobby in the U.S. should recognize the danger of excessively lax gun laws and speak out about this case.

      If the gun lobby has anything to say about this case it will be in the form of an argument for more people to buy more guns.

      This can be a time for our country to come together.

      Our country has had more times to come together than anyone can count, but we remain as divided today as when the first settlers referred to the native people as "savages."

      One of my favorite writers, Walter Karp, said in an essay on the Pledge of Allegiance that despite the many differences on display at that time that we remained "one nation, ..., indivisible" because of the US Constitution. After Dubya and now Obama shredding the Constitution for their own ends we can no longer make that claim.

      Given the American propensity for gullibility and the prevalence of fear- and warmongers there is little cause to be optimistic that "our country will come together."

  • 'Lone Wolf,' 'Self-Radicalized': Islamophobic Buzzwords never applied to White Terrorists
    • Meanwhile next door in South Carolina they are priming the kids to be pro-gun: "SC bill aims to prove state gun-friendly through NRA curriculum in schools: South Carolina proposes Second Amendment course in public schools, in what many see as welcome to gun industry" - link to america.aljazeera.com

    • Double standards for whites is nothing new. One example of countless: "Lynching and Jeff Davis Highway: Exclusive: Many parts of the South, including Arlington, Virginia, just outside the U.S. capital, still honor Confederate President Jefferson Davis by attaching his name to important roadways. But a recent study on lynching puts the motive for honoring that white supremacist in a sickening new light," writes Robert Parry. - link to consortiumnews.com

    • Was Mr. Hicks by any chance influenced to some degree by 'American Sniper'?

  • Putin on the Nile: an Isolated Russia Seeks friends in Egypt w/ offer of Nuclear Plant
    • ISIS or any other violent group doesn't need to be a big player to be the trigger for another mass disaster. Gavrilo Princip was just a bit player in Yugoslavia's nationalist movement but he pulled the trigger that is credited with igniting WWI.

    • And, what will Israel have to say about Egypt "having the means to make a nuclear bomb"?

  • When you've Lost Bernie Sanders: How Netanyahu destroyed the Israel Lobby
    • We have 3 branches of government, all equal.

      Correction: We have four branches of government: The presidency, Congress, the supreme (?) Court and the lobbying complex which is more equal than the preceding three.

    • Maybe if the senator were Schumer ...

      If it were Schumer we would do well to begin preparing for the End Times.

    • If someone sufficiently qualified were to write a book explaining how politicians can manage to talk out of both sides of their mouths for extended periods without going insane that book would probably be a best seller. There are several people in Congress that have taken good progressive stands on some issues but have also managed to do a Jekyll-and-Hyde act and support war crimes such as Operation Protective Edge. If only one profile in courage would rise and speak truthfully to the American people and damn the campaign donors.

  • Williams Affair: Reagan and Bush Lied about Military Records but Get a Pass
    • All the talk about Williams seems to be focused on his fictional account of a helicopter ride. What about the reports he relayed from Iraq about the war? Were they truthful or did he retail the military's version?

    • Perhaps in the past Williams absorbed a lesson from Somerset Maugham who suggested it is permissible to ignore the facts if it improves the telling of the tale.

    • Page: 12
    • News anchors and journalists are under the highest standards for telling the truth or there is no point to them at all.

      Do you really believe that? How many in the mainstream media are telling their listeners about about the expansion of NATO and the machinations of Victoria Nuland and the US ambassador to Ukraine to have the current prime minister, their "Yats," replace the former? All the MSM talk about is Putin's understandable reaction to threats to Russia that they label as aggression.

      There is good reason to suspect the US government has borrowed a page from US-Central America history (re: United Fruit) and is now applying it to Ukraine. "West’s agri-giants snap up Ukraine" by Frederic Mousseau - link to atimes.com

      Check the Sunday talk shows and note how there is a preponderance of right-wing and neoliberal guests and rarely anyone from the left.

    • Why are so many critics lambasting Williams after giving passes for years to other major anchors who have lied to their audiences if not by commission then by omission? Consider the candidates for greatest lies of this century, those that created the war on Iraq. Now we are getting one-sided stories in the mainstream media about Russia invading Ukraine with no mention of the neocons in the state department maneuvering to oust the democratically-elected president. Consider this: "MSNBC’s Chuck Todd Says It’s Not His Job To Challenge Republican Lies" by Jason Easley - link to politicususa.com. It's enough to keep mediamatters.org fully occupied.

  • Is ISIL's 'Shock and Awe' more Awe-ful because One Victim?
    • Although the message I’m seeing in this thread is that the US is so evil ...

      You're missing the point. Mouthpieces for the US claim moral superiority and denigrate people who engage in despicable behavior. To put it politely the US PR folks are operating on double standards and some people who believe what's right is right and what's wrong is wrong find that offensive. Any charges against the US on this thread you find untrue?

    • Let me know when you figure out a way to wage war that does not include the loss of civilian life.

      You might check with the people who wrote the Geneva Conventions related to war. They seemed to believe wars could be fought without deliberate killing of unarmed and defenseless civilians.

    • American and British lawyers drawing up a list of charges in preparation for the Nuremberg Trials included fire bombing. This charge was deleted when the lists were checked in Washington and London because the accused Germans could have used the tu coq defense - you did it yourself. Victors justice still prevailed.

    • The scenes described in this article are shocking, but it is okay if we do it, because our god, Mammon, says so.

  • Angry Jordanian Crowds Rally over ISIL Murder of Pilot, but some blame US, King
    • From the United States' rap sheet:

      a. Neo-fascists installed in Ukraine by the machinations of neocons in the state department burned 30 people alive in a union hall in Odessa.

      b. Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. How many people have paid attention to ISIS's victims being clothed in Guantanamo orange and considered a connection?

      c. Our anti-communist "friends" in Argentina and Chile tossing live prisoners into the ocean from helicopters.

      d. My Lai and lesser "My Lais" in Vietnam.

      And that's just for openers.

      So it takes an enormous amount of gall to be indignant about this latest half-dozen atrocities in the Islamic State but, being exceptional, the United States is up to the task.

  • GOP's Scott Walker: Pitches possible Syria War to make us Like Him
    • Some day, when the US Government is able to recognize the horror we wrongfully inflicted on Iraq,...

      As the old saw would put it, don't hold your breath on that one.

    • If the plutocratic and political oligarchs behind the curtain can get this empty suit elected they'll be in seventh heaven and millions of people will be heading towards the gates of hell.

    • The question we need to ask is, "Who is Scott Walker being a mouthpiece for?"

  • Ironies of Empire: US now Allied with Shiites Trained by Assassinated HIzbullah Leader
    • I'm reminded of advice by a golf coach many years ago. He said that there is a perfect swing. If you deviate from it you have two choices. Either get back to the perfect swing or make some adjustment to offset the problem caused by the deviation. The problem with the latter, as he explained, you will probably need to make another adjustment that will need another adjustment and before you know you'll be tied up in knots. Kind of like US foreign policy. The fix du jour is an adjustment.

  • 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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