Recent Comments

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
  • An Int'l Trail of Death and Heartbreak: How the Bush Wars came home with the Vets (2)
    • For theoretical reasons, I'm not a big fan of Albert Einstein, but I often resonate with his political views. He wrote:

      "To my mind to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder. "

      We condition our young people to be utterly numb and blind to the voice of reason. We train them to be killers. For what? We are a very sick society. It's scary.

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • "The Oslo criminals: A mendacious narrative" by Uri Avnery - link to"On that day (September 10, 1993), the Chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization and the Prime Minister of the State of Israel exchanged letters of mutual recognition. Yasser Arafat recognized Israel, Yitzhak Rabin recognized the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people."

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • "Those were not actual militia as the groups that went to aid Bundy and you do realize there are extremists in ever aspect of society, you cant lump them all into one group because of one issue."

      Fail in logic. Just plain ole FAIL.

      So, naive one. What percentage of a group, as deemed "extremist", would tip the scales into calling the group "terrorist"? In fact, you do know that the Oklahoma City bomber was actually two who were active in several "militias".

    • "That Sean Hannity and other far right wing pundits are supporting the regional militiamen and their mooching hero rather than the US government gives you an idea what side they’d be on if they were in Pakistan…"

      And whose side you would be on if you were in Pakistan.

  • Thousands of Palestinians Rally for Release of 5,000 in Israeli Jails, Including 200 Children (1)
    • Sadly, the Geneva Conventions either have no means of enforcement or no willingness on the part of the signatories to do so. Similar, in fact, to the League of Nations--and we know how that worked out.

  • Allen West: ‘Radical’ Muslims waging ‘jihad’ in U.S. — by voting and obeying election laws (5)
  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Juan--

      You're forgetting the best proof of all: Raiders of the Lost Ark. Steven Spielberg. Indy's plane flies over ... PALESTINE!

    • The propagandists today deny Palestine and lump all Arabs together to try to make the case that since Israel is so small and Arab lands so vast, they have the right to keep the occupied land. They try to shift the blame to neighboring countries for not permanently absorbing refugees. Imagine if Syrian refugees were told they could never go home and that neighbors would just have to cope.
      We hear a lot about Holocaust-deniers, but what about Palestine-deniers, occupation-deniers, ethnic cleansing-deniers, apartheid-deniers, etc.?

  • Allen West: ‘Radical’ Muslims waging ‘jihad’ in U.S. — by voting and obeying election laws (5)
  • An Int'l Trail of Death and Heartbreak: How the Bush Wars came home with the Vets (2)
  • The FBI's Facial Recognition Database Combines Lo-Res Photos With Zero Civil Liberties Considerations (4)
    • And that would be painting a big red flag on yourself. Not a good idea if you need to use the airlines or otherwise be unencumbered by existence at the top of a potential terrorist watch-list. (Since your status would not be used for prosecutorial purposes, only investigative leads, it would be OK, along the lines rationalized in the article).

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • It is important to note that the native Jews in Palestine were very similar to the Arabs in their dress - often wearing the fez.

      It was the Jewish refugees from Europe in the late 1940s that aggressively formed settlements and wore Western garb.

      There are photos from November 29th, 1947 when the U.N. partition vote was announced that showed the celebrations among Jews and news accounts commenting their clothing was European in style, as opposed to native born Jews in Palestine.

      The primary impetus of the creation of Israel was to relocate Jewish refugees from Europe who were displaced following WWII. Marek Edelman, a leader of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, was bitterly opposed to David Ben-Gurion's decision to declare a Jewish state in 1948 and considered himself a non-Zionist until he died a few years ago In Poland.

      Palestine is a region and denotes neither an Arab nor Jewish identity - just like Montenegro is a region of Yugoslavia that is populated by various ethnic groups. Palestinian-Americans often have Palestinian currency from the 1930s and allude to its trilingual components as proof that Jews and Arabs in the region were treated on an equal basis under the Mandate.

      A professor from Birzeit University in the West Bank published in the 1980s a genealogical history of the Christian clans of the city of Ramallah going back 400 years. Those same families have intermarried for hundreds of years while continuously inhabiting Ramallah. These inhabitants were part of the Ottoman Empire until the end of WWI, and it was after establishment of the British Mandate that the concept of independent Palestinian statehood began to form as an eventual goal.

      In the 1930s Fouad Shatara, a Christian from Ramallah had spearheaded the creation of a Palestinian state at a regional convention where he sought the support of other Arabs in the Middle East also seeking independence from colonial powers.

      There were however influential Jewish interests in the U.S. led politically by Congressman Goldberg from New York that goaded the United States government to support the creation of a Jewish state. The United States was able to use its foreign aid leverage with U.N. member states to get them to vote for the U.N. Partition Plan.

      David Ben-Gurion and a young diplomat named Abba Eban were very skilled in forming relationships with President Truman an U. N. leaders to convince them to support Israel's continued existence. Ben-Gurion presided over the signing of the Israeli declaration of independence ceremony while gunfire could be heard between Arab and Jewish militias outside the building in Tel Aviv. Ben-Gurion's next goal was the obtaining of a nuclear bomb capability with the help of a young Defense Ministry official named Shimon Peres, which he obtained via the establishment of a close diplomatic relationship with French President De Gaulle. By 1967-69, Israel became the sixth nuclear power in the world and became in a position to consolidate their national security from outside aggression.

  • Release the Entire Torture Report! (4)
  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • I so wish it were just about as simple as opposing the Federal govt/military, about autonomy, taxes, resources, alone with the Pak Taliban.

      But the TTP is an umbrella organization for all kinds of ethnic Sunni extremist militant groups, despite the dominating Pashtun makeup and strategic tribal location. Its a religious-political movement, with national and regional ambitions, rather than simply being a local ethnic tribal issue alone, or even about freedom from the state or revenge against it. What compounds it is also the Alice in Wonderland relationships between all manners of pro or anti-Pak militants and the duplicitous Pak govt/military establishment.

      Even if the questionable reasons of grievances of the Pak Taliban's violence above were accepted at face value, its still quite a stretch to compare with the Nevada US militia, violence wise, though I'm aware there's a history of right-wing radical extremism that may just be waiting to burst into violence and terrorism today. Also worrying is the sympathizing sentiments from some US media, personalities and common folks, which reminds of the common Pakistani's conspiracy, denials and delusions. Still not at that level though with anything in Pakistan...

    • Hell this is the first time that the ranchers have felt the sting of the BLM bullwhip. Interestingly enough it has finally led to some common ground between ranchers and wild horse advocates. If combining forces keeps the BLM from leasing to fracking interests I'll take the strange bedfellows-hand out the pillows---we may be here awhile!

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Historically it has been called a variation of Palestine for over 3000 years. The origin of of the name Palestine comes from Egypt in the time of Ramses III (c. 1150 BCE) when the people there were referred to as Peleset. The Assyrians in c. 800 BCE referred to the region as Palashtu or Pilistu. In 450 BC Herodotus wrote in The Histories about Palaistine. A century later Aristotle referred to Palestine. Later Romans referred to this area as part of Syria Palaestina and is how it historically appeared on maps. In the bible they were referred to as Philistines - biblical scholars trace the root to the Semitic p-l-s meaning "cover" or "to invade". In contrast Israel does not appear on a map for the area until the mid 1940's (except for one propaganda map from the 1920's).

      There is a straight contiguous line from that 1150 BCE mention of the land of the Peleset people by the Egyptians to the Palestine of today. What existed of the kingdoms of Israel were wiped off of the map by the Assyrians in 740 BCE. Babylon conquered the lands Israel claims they own in 597 BCE. By 538 BCE, the lands claimed by Israel were conquered by the Persians, then by the Seleucids, then by the Romans, then by the Muslim Caliphate, then by the Ayyubid Sultanate, then by the Mamluk Sultanate, then by the Ottoman Empire. Following the breakup of the Ottoman Empire after WW1, a separate and distinct Palestine country re-appeared.

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • Picky - Picky. So the shooters from gun bizzaro world did not dot the I's or cross the T's on their militia applications.
      Pleas do NOT go on-and-on.

  • 9 Maps that Show How The GOP is Destroying Southern States (2)
    • True dat, but if you want to be read and understand by common folks -- including me and those in the benighted states that you mention -- it's time to place close attention to how each piece might be read. We've got to make the info as accessible as possible, you know? -- Just trying to help --

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Although some ignorant or opportunistic politicians and some revisionist historians have tried to falsify historical records, historically there is no doubt about the continuous existence of Palestine and the Palestinians. The term Palestine (old form Peleset in Hieroglyphic texts) appears in Egyptian texts, dating back to c 1150 BC, even predating the Kingdom of Israel, which was established in 1020 BC. In the 5th century BC Herodotus wrote of Palaistine, which included the Judean mountains and the Jordan Rift Valley, as forming part of the 5th Persian satrapy. The Hebrew name of Palestine, translated as Philistia in English, is used more than 250 times in the Bible. There are numerous references to Palestine during the Byzantine period.

      Muslims conquered Palestine in 636 AD, and with the exception of a relatively short interval of the reign of the Crusaders (1099-1187) it was ruled by various Muslim dynasties until after the First World War.

      The Ottoman Turks ruled Palestine from 1516-1917. At times, they divided Palestine into different Eyalet or Sanjak, sometimes becoming part of the Eyalet of Damascus until 1660 and later it became part of the Eyalet of Sidon, but the term Palestine was still very much in use as a collective term for its different component parts. Thomas Salmon’s 18th century book, Modern History, states: “Jerusalem is still reckoned the capital city of Palestine.” (Thomas Salmon, Modern History or, the present state of all nations, London, Longman, p. 461)

      So only those who deliberately wish to distort historical facts can doubt the continuous existence of Palestine and Palestinian people.

    • About 20 years ago I bought a 1912 Brittanica. Under the heading Palestine about 27 or 28 pages. Under Israel: not even one word. Unfortunately my wife did some housecleaning and threw the encyclopedia out about 2 years ago.

    • The Palestine Post is now the Jerusalem Post I found out the other day.

    • Of course, you are correct. Strange as the claim is, many believe it. Still remember an Israeli marching into a Palestinian costume exhibit organized by a group of students at UCLA c. '89 with our own & borrowed pieces who began yelling "There was no Palestine." I was afraid he might damage something, but he left. Same response to an Arabic music concert I organized at MIT in '91 by an Israeli visitor who said "there is no Palestinian music. There is no Arabic music, he (Simon Shaheen) is inventing a tradition."

  • Top 6 Pulitzer Prize "Traitors" in American Journalism (12)
    • Mussolini, I believe, defined fascism as the politics/government of the state organized to support the corporations. (I'm paraphrasing from ancient memory.) Hence the "corporate state."

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Truth is that the Jews in those days called them selves Palestinians...a prominent American Zionist of those days named his champion horse...Palestinian..(big winner by the way)..however as Jordan took over the West Bank..when Israel came about,there never was a Palestine...Palestine was and many still think Palestine is the name of the whole area.much like the Balkans,or north or South America...that is not to say that the Arabs living there can not call themselves palestinians

    • Your facts will be trumped by AIPAC's campaign finance donations and all but a few elected officials in Congress will give Netanyahu standing ovations the next time he addresses his puppets.

    • If I'm not mistaken, it was the Romans who first called it Palestine or Syria Palestina.

      Regardless, the fact that the region was part of some large empire and not an independent state didn't give European Jews the right to ethnically cleanse it of its native population in order to set up their own nation.

    • Even though I am a firm believer in the right of the State of Israel to exist, I have always thought the claim "no Palestine" to be silly. I have Jewish friends born in Jerusalem before 1948 whose birth certificates state they were born in Palestine.

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • Considering the history of land takings by government entities and the use of imminent domain by corporations for everything from urban renewal, power lines, parks, game refuges, pipelines, solar "parks," sports stadiums, any old reason. Heavy handed and corrupt.
      Forced relocation and cleansing. Check the Shenandoah or Monongahela. Many families lost their homes. Tens of thousands lost with urban renewal. That was a boon for real estate and gentry. Poor people got sweet tail.
      If we were talking about good g'ment that would be one thing but we're not.
      It's just the mindset of the US. We been running folks off land for so long we got to liking it.

    • Just in...
      "Finally The Truth About The Bundy Ranch Raid"

    • I grew up in Wyoming and my father worked for a rancher his whole life. I got to see with my own eyes the vast difference between ranchers. Some like this cheapskate had too many animals for his allotment,so the poor animals would eat all the green plant material on our side of the barbed wire that they could reach by sticking their necks through the fence.It would be bare dirt for two feet all along the fence. The myth of the land cherishing rancher is just that a myth. As a taxpayer that land is as much mine as it is this crooks,and I don't want his cows on the land we all share!

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • . This is not a comment on the photo shared, but on the idea that photos don't lie -- they sure do: as any photographer can tell you

  • The FBI's Facial Recognition Database Combines Lo-Res Photos With Zero Civil Liberties Considerations (4)
    • is there some kind of opportunity here for a budding entrepreneur ?
      Maybe an appliance / mask that can be donned while on the subway that alters the measurements enough to conceal one's movements ?

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Okay, so not only is there really a Palestine, the folks who are currently living there ACTUALLY ARE the ancestral Jews from the Bible? And the modern-day Israelis are ethnically Europeans and Turks who migrated into Europe, before their triumphal exodus (aka "return") into "Israel"??

  • On Eve of Pope's visit to Israel, Radical Israeli Settlers attack Christian Village (7)
    • What is a "price tag" attack? How is it different from other types of attack? I didn't find it defined anywhere.

  • 9 Maps that Show How The GOP is Destroying Southern States (2)
    • Southern Louisiana is in the South, but not of the South. Cajuns are French Catholics, not Southern Baptists.

      Jesus doesn't run Texas, Big Oil does. Big Oil has ALWAYS bought off the politicians and run Texas the same way they are running the good 'ol U.S. of A today. When Obama gives the OK for the Keystone Pipeline, Big Oil will be doing the talking.

      Eating too much fried chicken makes people get fat in the rest of the South, but great Tex-Mex food is the main cause of obesity in Texas.

  • Release the Entire Torture Report! (4)
  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Actually, I have usually seen the claim stated as " there were no Palestinian people before (1967, 1993, ?), they were just considered 'arabs' ".

  • Kenya's Green Economy will Generate $45 Billion by 2030, Build Climate Resilience and Boost Food Security (1)
  • Color Video of Progress in 1950s Iraq before the US Got involved in It (1)
  • Release the Entire Torture Report! (4)
  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • Neil, firstly, please do not insult my intelligence by asking "Are you aware of the logical and background to rational debate, and of the responsibilities expected of those who engage?",
      Second, you completely avoided my point, you can essentially compare anything even if they have no correlation. This whole article is like comparing apples and oranges, sure they have similarities. An apple is pretty much round and so is a orange, they are both edible, they both have a layer of skin, but does this mean they are the same? No. What if I wrote a paper about how similar you are to the Taliban? would you like it? but you have so many similarities, you both have skin, you both have a brain, legs, arms, you both eat, sleep, argue, lie, have faith is something etc...this does not mean you are "the same" as them. My whole point is, there is no point in the article, it has no meaning or clout at all and I do not understand what the point of making this comparison would be.
      Juan, if you wrote this article on the reasons Cliven Bundy was in the wrong, and why the militia shouldn't have gone to his aid, I could understand, there is a point. To me it seems like you are just trying to turn them into terrorists which I do not understand or agree with.

    • Just so you are aware, I was not baiting about Hitler I was showing extremes of why his statements are comparing two things which are not comparable.

  • Pictures Don't Lie: Refuting #there_was_no_Palestine (18)
    • Fascinating. I have often read variations of the assertions, "there was no Palestine" or "there was no Palestinian people." It is a strange notion; it is hard to understand the mentality of the person who says such things.

  • Release the Entire Torture Report! (4)
    • Does America have the courage to face the truth?

      Do the politicians, including the President have the courage of a Manning or Snowden to stand for the principles of our constitution?

      Who and what are the politicians trying to protect?

      Glenn Greenwald has a Tweet "Larry Summers Explains Washington to Elizabeth Warren in One Sentence"

      The sentence, a short one, "They don't criticize other insiders."

      Here is the copy of the longer twitter:

      Larry Summers explains Washington to Elizabeth Warren in one sentence:

      "In the spring of 2009, after the panel issued its third report, critical of the bailout, Larry Summers took Warren out to dinner in Washington and, she recalls, told her that she had a choice to make. She could be an insider or an outsider, but if she was going to be an insider she needed to understand one unbreakable rule about insiders: 'They don’t criticize other insiders.'"

      link to

  • NYPD closes Unit that Spied on Muslims (3)
    • That was exactly my thought as I was clicking the comments link. In-line with another post about how the NSA denies there're be any abuse of its primitive bulk face-recognition practices, in the face of institution imperatives for power and growth, these big bureaucracies simply cannot let go of bad ideas.

      Instead, their inclination will be to see it as more of a public relations problem, to be "solved" by better concealing their actions, or perhaps declaring them "Top Secret," and will declare divulging existence of the new program to be a threat to national security. Thinking practically, maybe the FBI will pick it up...

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • For the Keystone pipeline to be built, they'll have to use a lot of eminent domain (government taking of private property). If the pipline is stopped, it could be due more to the objections of property rights supporters than to the complaints of environmentalists. Anti-government feelings have caused headaches for the NSA. Now, the right needs to step up and oppose the use of eminent domain in those cases where the stolen property is to be given to a foreign corporation (like Transcanada).

    • I am wondering how wealthy Bundy is. 1000 cattle are likely worth more than $1 million. People must remember that the issues (of Bundy using the federal land rent free or not) have been litigated and a federal court ruled against Bundy. That is called due process.
      I would not want to risk my life, in a gun fight with the government, in support of a wealthy rancher.

    • Furthermore, baiting about Hitler is widely recognized as reprehensible. Nor is our government particularly controlling now compared to most other nations.

    • Matt, Prof. Cole titled this piece "five ways _____ resembles Pakistan's Taliban." The existence of shared traits does not imply either that the two groups must either be on average alike in *all* respects, or that all of their members are like each other (aside from the first question.) To pretend that the latter was implied, is the straw man fallacy. Are you aware of the logical and background to rational debate, and of the responsibilities expected of those who engage?

  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)
  • Top 6 Pulitzer Prize "Traitors" in American Journalism (12)
    • Before he was Supreme Justice, the idiot John Roberts did what before the Supreme Court in Bush V. Gore? Despite what the Constitution says about the states being responsible for elections? And he was nominated by the grateful little W. for his unconstitutional service? I want to vomit. Every time I see his name. Good luck to you in history, Roberts. You have seriously effed yourself. I hope you like the money.

  • Rep. Peter King sees Red over Pulitzers Honoring Snowden, Journalists covering NSA (5)
    • I think it's important to understand that the right-wing (by which I mean anyone to the right of Dennis Kucinich or Al Grayson; including the GOP & the 'Blue-dog' Dims) pay only lip-service to their oaths. What they actually support is Mussolini-style fascism in which they & their corporate fellow-travelers govern to suit their own best interests & reap benefits they deny to the hoi-poloi, while permitting sufficient benefits, to sufficient numbers of the 'hoi' as to stave off open rebellion while keeping the numbers of those sufficiently disenfranchised as to contemplate rebellion too low to accomplish it. Keep in mind 'democracy' is "government by 'the people". The term does not specify 'ALL the people'. People like Peter King draw a distinction between those entitled to govern and those to be governed.

  • 8 Plutocrats out-earned 3.6 mn Working Poor & 7 Other Headlines You won't see in MSM (4)
    • In other words, the system is working as intended. As John Jay wrote, "Those who own America ought to govern it." And they have, pretty much since the beginning, with a relatively short interregnum between 1932 and 1980.

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • It'll get more interesting if Obama sends in a couple of drones to keep a close watch on these dangerous, gun-toting right-wing kooks. Bringing the drones home will allow Obama to send 'em to Nebraska after he gives the go ahead for the Keystone pipeline. They can keep a close watch on all the envirowackos, old hippies from the 60s, and other radical types. It'll be like Woodstock without the bands. All they need is a Nebraska farmer to play Max Yasgur....


      Obama will go to Nebraska and give his own "Mission Accomplished" speech.

      "We all know this pipeline is very dirty and oh-so-STINKY. I can smell it from here, but the real issue is JOBS, JOBS, JOBS for all Americans."

      A couple of drones will be circling overhead.

      No guns means all the protestors get locked up until the pipeline is finished.

    • The American Taliban supported the invasion of Iraq and wanted armed intervention in Libya, Egypt, Syria and now the Ukraine. Darn right they kill innocent people and terrorize the globe. They also advocate Fundamentalist Religion and the suppression of women. The only difference is that Obama does not send troops and drones to kill the American Taliban in their houses or at their weddings.

    • Right wingers, like Hannity, attack people on food stamps & unemployment insurance as "moochers & takers" but when a anti-goverment rancher won't pay us taxpayers for the use of our land, he's a hero. These people are traitors.

  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)
    • Imagine that the Bundy ranching family in Nevada, instead of being white and Mormon, are all black and Muslim. And imagine that they, too, believe not only that the federal government should have no jurisdiction over the public land adjoining their ranch, but also that a second revolutionary war should topple the U.S. government.

      Imagine that, just like Mr. Bundy, they lost two court decisions and are expected to either pay one million in overdue fees or have their cattle seized to pay the debt. Imagine that they send out a call, via Facebook and Twitter, for all like-minded thinkers to take up arms and prepare to fight the agents sent to collect the cattle.

      How would the media describe some 2000 black, Muslim men, armed with automatic rifles and shotguns, who drive from all across the country to show up in Nevada ready to kill government officials?

      How would the media portray those black, Muslim men when they used their guns to shut down I-15, a major interstate freeway, forcing hundreds of travelers to bake in the hot desert sun until the road could be re-opened?

      What would right-wing pundits say about those black, Muslim men who were crouched on overpasses training their sniper sights on the cowboys and drivers hired by the federal government to move the cattle?

      Would they agree with those black, Muslim militants who planned to put their wives and girlfriends on the front lines so there would be news footage of federal agents shooting women?

      Would Nevada politicians, senator Dean Heller and Governor Brian Sandoval, still throw their support behind a Bundy who said, “. . . I don’t recognize the United States government as even existing,” if he were Muslim and black?

      Try as hard as I can, I can’t see people on the right using any word other than "terrorist" to describe homegrown, black, Muslim militants who are willing to use violence to support their belief that the U.S. government is meaningless.

      And that shows us exactly how far Americans have to go before we define each other by character, not race or religion.

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • As a historian, we really are reaching the same tipping point as 1933-35 in the US. After machine-gunning union strikers, Bonus Army, coal miners, etc., the US government was quite unpopular during that period. We even had a near coup, financed by bankers, exposed by Gen. Smedley Butler. If we don't get an FDR to help restore a sense of justice, this is just a prelude. History does repeat.

    • Those were not actual militia as the groups that went to aid Bundy and you do realize there are extremists in ever aspect of society, you cant lump them all into one group because of one issue. No one was attacked, No one was killed, No one was even hurt except for the individual that was tazed.
      "All Catholics are bad because of some of the scandals in the church" "All Christians are bad because some bombed abortion clinics" "All of our military is bad because some of them raped and killed women" and I could go on and on.

  • Top 6 Pulitzer Prize "Traitors" in American Journalism (12)
  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
  • Top 6 Pulitzer Prize "Traitors" in American Journalism (12)
    • As soon as I heard Bennett call him a traitor I knew the opposite. That goes for all of the 'patriots' calling somebody a traitor. Having Nixon call you a traitor meant you wre doing your profession. Today our news are all 'patriotic' and are not doing their profession.

  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)
  • The FBI's Facial Recognition Database Combines Lo-Res Photos With Zero Civil Liberties Considerations (4)
    • The behavior of these people takes the sting out of any definition of cynicism. Another perhaps more likely (e.g., demonstrated) response from their demonstrated menu would've been to make this matter Top Secret retroactively.

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • Oh, you just conveniently happened to leave out the fact that the Taliban kill innocent people and terrorize the globe, while Bundy and the militia do not. The "right wing pundits", as you like to refer to them as, would never promote terrorism or their organizations.

      Stop trying to use extremes like this to compare things that are not comparable.
      Here is an example of why you are crazy:
      You are supporting a government that is trying to run everything and tell everyone one what to do. You must also think Hitler was amazing, and you would be supporting him if he was around right now.

      I digress.

    • The list gets even longer when you start considering how both groups treat the rights of women and children. A rancher supporter recently opined that he would be OK using his wife and kids as human shields.
      link to

  • Pro-Feminists & Metrosexuals: The New Arab Men of the Millennial Generation (1)
  • On Eve of Pope's visit to Israel, Radical Israeli Settlers attack Christian Village (7)
  • Who Rules America Today? - Domhoff (1)
    • I disagree with the thesis that the rich rule America. As I see it, the money rules America and the rich are just hosts for the money. We've created powerful, largely automated, systems that operate on the 'meta-instruction' to create ever larger accumulations of money. Remove the current wealthy, and the system will simply find other 'hosts' to build its piles of money around. The 'lucky' parties (the 1%, who are actually as interchangeable as any low-level employee) will then find their own freedom of action constrained by the money that attaches itself to them. A sad denouement. As a race, we've already ceded our free-will to our creations.

  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • I think another comparison is to Reagun's "Welfare Queens". The big difference being skin color and gender. Skin color and gender may also help explain the 'popular support'.

    • Bundy seems to have attracted the support of all the gun-totin', gummint-hatin' yahoos in the vicinity, and those who could afford to drive/fly in from other parts of the country. Freedom-lovin' men who are just itching to get themselves a shot at those federal jackbooted thugs with the BLM - over the heads of their sacrificial wimmenfolk, who will be stationed in the front row, of course, so's to take the bullets for their brave hubbies.

      Huh? Where are the wimmen? Didn't ANYONE bring their wife? Girlfriend? Ex-wife? Whadda ya mean, she didn't want to come along?

  • NYPD closes Unit that Spied on Muslims (3)
  • 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan's Taliban (25)
    • Here is what I don't understand: Homeland Security and the national security state has been built up to unprecedented levels in the last 12 years; however, if, as you say, Bundy and his followers are advocating/threatening violence and terrorism, why aren't they arrested under the Patriot Act? Forget the grazing fees, how about terrorism charges? I have the answer: Bundy and his militia have popular support across the country, even many elected officials are coming to his aid. Interesting comparison.

  • NYPD closes Unit that Spied on Muslims (3)
  • US sent CIA Director as Ambassador to Tehran after CIA overthrew Iran's Democratic gov't (US now Complaining about Hostage-Taker Amb.) (27)
    • If you really want to see how hypocritical this refusal of a visa is, have a look at the speech Eisenhower gave in 1959 to the Iranian majles, 6 years after approving the overthrow of democratically elected Mossadegh.
      Dwight D. Eisenhower: "Address to the Members of the Parliament of Iran," December 14, 1959. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. link to

    • Crist claims a lot of things, and is short on actual citations to actual sources.

  • The FBI's Facial Recognition Database Combines Lo-Res Photos With Zero Civil Liberties Considerations (4)
    • Oh well, at least Facebook tell us how far they have got with Deep Face.

      link to

      "What it chooses to do with that software, of course, remains a mystery. It will obviously eventually be used to shore up the existing facial recognition solution on, ensuring that every photo of you on the social network is connected to your account (even if they don’t show a visible tag). From there, it’s hard to imagine that Zuckerberg and co will keep DeepFace purely confined to — there’s too much money to be earnt by scanning the rest of the public web for matches. Another possibility would be branching out into real-world face tracking — there are obvious applications in security and CCTV, but also in commercial settings, where tracking someone’s real-world shopping habits could be very lucrative. As we’ve discussed before, Facebook (like Google) becomes exponentially more powerful and valuable (both to you and its share holders) the more it knows about you."

      Just imagine a global database of people's faces. What can the Department of Homeland Security do with that?

  • 25 Maps That Will Change The Way You See The World (2)
  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)
    • The shooter screamed "Heil Hitler". Therefore, the act was a hate crime. If he had shouted "Aliuh Akbar", then it would have been terrorism.

  • If Jesus had a wife, would it change the GOP War on Women? (28)
    • Juan Cole knows how much I admire both the quality and courage of his work - It's in that context that I suggest that these remarks on the "JWG" are a bit wide of the mark.

      Assume, as I do in all that follows, that "the fragment" was written in the earliest centuries of Christianity.

      First off, to state that "Of course, that it is ancient does not require that it be correct" -- meaning, that Jesus had a wife -- is rather an understatement. It would in fact not require that there was a Jesus, in a sense other than as a figure variously portrayed in Christian texts from the time of Augustus forward.

      It's also the case that it would not require that the fragment's text was part of an "oral tradition" that predates the fragment or indeed extends beyond the fragment - forward, backward, or sideward.

      Indeed, it would not "require" that anyone other than the scribe ever saw or heard of the statement.

      But worse yet, without the full context of the document of which the fragment is a very small piece, there is not even any way to know that the words, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife...'" and "She will be able to be my disciple." are a). referring to the same subject (i.e., what is printed in the article does not require that the "she" is the same person as "my wife".

      And finally, a reference that says, "My wife" does not require that two words declare the existence of the wife - what if the words that are given after "My wife" as . . . were in fact, "in the event, contrary to fact, that I had or come to have, a wife"?

      There could of course have been a Jesus.

      If so, he could have had a wife.

      If he did, there could have been an "oral tradition" transmitting references by Jesus to his wife.

      Or not.

  • On Eve of Pope's visit to Israel, Radical Israeli Settlers attack Christian Village (7)
    • The Catholic Church -- like any and every human institution and, indeed, human being -- has every right to call out injustice, regardless of its history and regardless of the religion or ethnicity of the perpetrators. In fact, failing to condemn the injustice done to the Palestinians because of the history between the Church and the Jews would be a monstrous evil.

    • It is not a coincidence that this is happening on the 'eve' of the pope's visit. The Israelis are extremely wary of this new pope. He has a very strong streak of honesty and candidness and he is an activist for the oppressed. I believe that this incident was staged to send Pope Francis a message/warning and to demonstrate that the real power is in their hands not his.

  • Top 6 Pulitzer Prize "Traitors" in American Journalism (12)
  • Rep. Peter King sees Red over Pulitzers Honoring Snowden, Journalists covering NSA (5)
    • No, Peter King holding a seat in the House is a disgrace. Pulitzer prizes for whistleblowers is a good start.

    • King is such an arrogant jackass, it's impossible to say much of anything about him without using 'F' words or worse. I'll be glad to send him a copy of the 1st Amendment & a few choice comments.

  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)
    • I'm fairly sure that it's not just racial*, but racial-ideological that makes the media unwilling to label them as terrorists. Witness "ecoterrorists," for instance, who are by and large white and whom get stuck with the label even in the absence of a clear connection to the ideology of the crime. (One example here is the Cleveland case, where the alleged crime--'blowing up a bridge'--presented a connection to environmental issues somewhere between non-sensical and nonexistent.) Or, as another commenter above noted, Occupy.

      What looks like a stronger argument, to me, is that "terrorist" doesn't get applied to white conservative men and white conservative organizations, but that *both* parts are key to the operation of the label. So the racial aspect--whiteness--is necessary for avoiding being a 'terrorist' but not sufficient.

      *including historically "suspect," now white groups such as Catholics (Irish, then swarthy southern Europeans) and Jews.

  • Uncle Sam's Eternal Gua-Gulag: US Continues to Imprison Dozens of Yemenis Cleared or Never Charged (1)
    • Two points I’d like to make:

      President Obama believes that he is powerless to send Gitmo Detainees elsewhere, wholesale. He will never close the place down.
      In April, 2009, 3 months after his advisor Greg Craig had persuaded Obama to announce closure of Gitmo within 1 year, his Chief of Staff Emmanuel told him not to, or he would not get reelected.
      The calculation is that one of the “Cleared for Release” Prisoners could, after release, commit some sort of crime. If that happened, any politician who didn’t do all he could to keep the guy locked up, even though he is technically functionally innocent, would be punished by voters in the next election.
      If Obama was to approve a mass release or resettlement or repatriation, and if any one of those released did something wrong, then his party would be held accountable and lose elections for one or more cycles. To some politicians, that’s a bigger deal than following the rule of law.
      The Detainees’ best hope for release is for Rand Paul to be elected President. He at least supports the Constitution and the rule of law. Not likely to happen.

      2. GUANTANAMO CZARS at DOD and State already have a plan of action for Closure
      Special Envoys Sloan and Lewis have a plan that will allow the complete closure of the place, if that was what the administration wanted. It’s called the Dat-dazh-deet deradicalization program, in some circles.
      Why not execute it ? See Point #1.
      They are still free to resettle prisoners case-by-case to allies, in exchange for one type of aid or another. Palau, for example, got a $ 200 Million + facility through the IMF in exchange for agreeing to “temporarily resettle” 17 Uighurs (they eventually took in 7.) Bermuda and El Salvador got about half that much per prisoner to take in 4 and 2, respectively.
      It’s thought that Albania takes them in at cost, as did Algeria.
      But there will be no mass transfer.

  • GOP Armed Services Chair: Dropping Benghazi, Military did all it Could (Is the Witch Hunt Over?) (5)
  • Jazz legend John McLaughlin Plays Ramallah, Palestine to counteract Palestinian "Isolation" (4)
    • One of my top 5 musical experiences was to sit in a small club (250 seats) ten feet away from the Mahavishnu Orchestra just days after their release of Inner Mounting Flame (without having heard the music beforehand).

      Talk about shock and awe...

  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)
  • Top 6 Pulitzer Prize "Traitors" in American Journalism (12)
  • Rep. Peter King sees Red over Pulitzers Honoring Snowden, Journalists covering NSA (5)
  • US Press once again Declines to Call White Terrorism in Kansas, Nevada, White Terrorism (28)