Archive for category Opinion

The New Internet EULA

In order to use any digital device communicating via any network public or private accept and agree to the services and statements delineated below.  By Clicking SUBMITyou agree to the following:

  • Any network packets (data, text, speech, location, speed, velocity, etc…) originating from or destined to any digital device you may own, posses or use, transported across any of the networks known collectively as “the Internet” as well as any communication network public or private will be subject to scrutiny by authorities of the federal government of the United States of America.
  • The wholesale storage of any of those packets in a federal digital storage facility until such time as any  authorities of the federal government of the United States of America may see fit to examine them in any capacity for any reason.
  • That you trust the federal government of the United States of America, any and all of it’s agents, officers, employees, or contractors to use any of the information or digital resources described above only in the pursuit of the national security of the United States of America.

Thank you, clicking SUBMIT will now enable your device for use.

sign your rights away...

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Fair to say they want to torture him.

“The suspect, based upon his actions, clearly is a good candidate for enemy combatant status. We do not want this suspect to remain silent,”


Read on…

How about we look at the source of the problem- American foreign (Business) policy vs. the symptom- terrorism?

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I invite everyone to read this and think about it on the 10th anniversary of our grand mistake.

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Mitch-the-Bitch tries again to rule from the minority


Sen. Minority Leader Mitch-the-Bitch McConnell reiterated his position this morning: Government will shutdown unless President makes dramatic cuts to Medicare and Social Security.

He wants the Democrats to not only enable the cuts, but also shield Republicans from the political consequences of cutting these programs by cutting them on the Republicans behalf.

Mitch-the-Bitch intendeds to hold the nation hostage to get cuts to programs


Who in Hell does he think he is ?

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My thoughts for 2013 and beyond

Here’s a list of things I see as priorities (not in any particular order) for our country…

  • NATIONAL STANDARDS FOR ELECTIONS. There is an absolute need for elections in our country to be run based on a standard set of rules. We cannot continue to have whatever party happens to be in control of a given state able to tweak the election rules to favor themselves. This is totally unacceptable. We all need to vote on paper, using a common apparatus to count those paper votes. And we need to let go of the idea that we know the result immediately. We need to be able to wait a few days for a solid count.
  • RAISE THE CAP ON INCOME SUBJECT TO SOCIAL SECURITY TAXES.  The Social Security System was designed in a different age. Some changes need to be made. Simple changes that will carry it for the long term. If the Social Security tax cap were raised from the current $110,000 to $250,000 the solvency would be extended to 75 years out without reducing benefits.
  • SINGLE-PAYER, UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE. The Healthcare reform law is a good start, but what we really need is healthcare provided to everyone based on citizenship not employment status. We need to move the burden from the employers to the Nation. This can be financed by a simple, fractional 0.5 percent tax on stock trades and financial transactions.  A lot of politicians say that insecurity is the fear that inhibits growth on our economy. Well, take medical insurance out of the for-profit sector and you will reduce the cost of medicine. Then remove the cost of medical benefits from the employer’s balance sheet and you reduce the cost and uncertainty of providing jobs.
  • A FOSSIL FUEL POLICY FOCUSED ON THE NATION NOT THE CORPORATION.  Our energy companies, many of which began as American corporations, have become international corporations. The have little if any allegiance to the country that made them possible. We need a simple rule that states “Before any energy company could export any resource produced in the United States, the needs of the United States would have to be fulfilled first.” This would be structured on a five year plan to cover current and near future resources to make the United States fossil fuel self sufficient. 
  • INVESTMENT IN OUR NATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE.  The current defense budget of $631 Billion is provided for the defense of our nation. The 2012 budget is 6-7 times larger than the $106 billion of the military budget of China, and is more than the next twenty largest military spenders combined. Our crumbling infrastructure is a national security concern. A simple designation of 10%, or $63 Billion of the Pentagon budget to a national infrastructure bank could be used for rebuilding the critical backbone of our nation. This would be a huge boost to domestic jobs as well.

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The United States is different, all you need is money. If you have enough, you can do as you please.

In the past 48 hours, police in the U.K. and Germany have arrested senior bank executives for serious crimes. On Wednesday, Deutsche Bank offices were raided by 500 police because the CEO and CFO are under investigation for tax evasion.

Meanwhile in the U.S., the Justice Department signed a settlement with HSBC Bank on Tuesday, for its involvement in-

  • Money laundering

  • Drug smuggling

  • Providing support to terrorists.

HSBC Bank paid a trivial, half of one quarter’s profits and no executive will be criminally prosecuted.

Glen Greenwald does a heroic job covering the various layers of justice in America at this link.

Hell, the United States had a President, Vice President, Secretary of State, and Secretary of Defense all culpable of War Crimes and Eric Holder and the President looked ‘Forward’ instead of doing what should have been done.

What should we expect?


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Something to ponder…

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U.S. Oil Production Is At Highest Level Since 1997; Yet Gas Prices Remain ‘Stubbornly High’

Looking at Gasoline prices…

Then gas prices vs. oil production…

So when I hear Willard telling America he is going to increase domestic production and make America stand on her own, not importing oil, I have to laugh. Loudly and heartily. The man just doesn’t get it. Or the man knows most Americans don’t get it and he can snooker them into thinking he can do it so the morons will vote for him.

Seth Borenstein and Jack Gillum of the Associated Press explain:

That’s because oil is a global commodity and U.S. production has only a tiny influence on supply. Factors far beyond the control of a nation or a president dictate the price of gasoline.

When you put the inflation-adjusted price of gas on the same chart as U.S. oil production since 1976, the numbers sometimes go in the same direction, sometimes in opposite directions. If drilling for more oil meant lower prices, the lines on the chart would consistently go in opposite directions. A basic statistical measure of correlation found no link between the two, and outside statistical experts confirmed those calculations.

Nobody who is POTUS can do jack shit about this until they lay some nasty rules down for the oil companies, or nationalize them. Take your pick. It just isn’t going to happen otherwise.

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Because the Right Wing will do *ANYTHING* to get a white man back into the White House…

This is the 400-pound-gorilla-in-the-room that very few will dare to mention. Having a black man in the white house is rattling enough for the political right. Having a successful black man who may just well get re-elected threatens to cause them to unhinge.

No. They have no shame. They are so very well insulated by the cocoon of Washington and all that money they have. They hardly share the reality most of us are currently enduring. And yes, I think there is a definite undercurrent of race involved in a lot of their politics. Nobody on the political stage has the guts to point it out. But there it is.

And here’s another example of thinly veiled racism…

Former South Carolina Governor and Fox News contributor Mark Sanford wandered off the Appalachian Trail again Sunday morning when, in yet another completely isolated example of a Republican being totally-not-racist even though he sounds racist, said that President Obama is going to “come out and throw a lot of spears” at Tuesday’s upcoming debate.

America’s News HQ anchor Shannon Bream wasn’t in the shot, but she didn’t react audibly, and never skipped a beat in continuing to discuss expectations for Tuesday’s debate.

Gov. Sanford first praised former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney‘s performance at the first debate, then predicted that…

“You know, obviously Obama will come out in this case much more forcefully and he will throw a lot of spears.”

Completely coincidentally, and not at all related to this, the term “spearchucker” is a racial slur against black people, but what would a 52 year-old white guy from South Carolina know about that? Also, he didn’t call President Obama a “spearchucker,” he just said he would be throwing spears. That’s completely different

Bream ignored Sanford’s declaration, instead guiding the discussion around to a sort of warning about President Obama being “too aggressive” at the next debate. “We got mixed signals from the Obama campaign that the President intends to be more aggressive this time around,” she said. “We know it’s a town hall format where the candidate will be taking questions from undecided voters, but also with a moderator in place. How well does that play in an audience, and with real live average citizen voters? I mean, there has to be a balance in the tone, I would imagine, for how aggressive you can be in that kind of setting.”

Here’s the clip, from Fox News


Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, Colin Powell’s chief of staff during his time as secretary of state, decried John Sununu’s comment that Powell only endorsed Barack Obama because they are both black. “To say that Colin Powell would endorse President Obama because of his skin color is like saying Mother Teresa worked for profit,” Wilkerson told Ed Schultz.

Wilkerson said on The Ed Show that though he respects Sununu, a top Romney adviser and surrogate, “I don’t have any respect for the integrity of the position that he seemed to codify. Look at me, Ed, I’m white. I’m not black. Colin Powell picked me because of the content of my character and my competence.”

He added that he thinks Sununu’s remark was an “unfortunate slip of words,” but that it speaks to larger problem in the Republican party.

My party, unfortunately, is the bastion of those people, not all of them, but most of them, who are still basing their decision on race,” Wilkerson said. “Let me just be candid: My party is full of racists. And the real reason a considerable portion of my party wants President Obama out of the White House  has nothing to do with the content of his character, nothing to do with his competence as commander-in-chief and president, and everything to do with the color of his skin. And that’s despicable.

Read the whole thing here.

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I Fear for the Future

America’s Vassal Acts Decisively and Illegally
I returned to the UK today to be astonished by private confirmation from within the FCO that the UK government has indeed decided – after immense pressure from the Obama administration – to enter the Ecuadorean Embassy and seize Julian Assange.

This will be, beyond any argument, a blatant breach of the Vienna Convention of 1961, to which the UK is one of the original parties and which encodes the centuries – arguably millennia – of practice which have enabled diplomatic relations to function. The Vienna Convention is the most subscribed single international treaty in the world.

The provisions of the Vienna Convention on the status of diplomatic premises are expressed in deliberately absolute terms. There is no modification or qualification elsewhere in the treaty.

Article 22

1.The premises of the mission shall be inviolable. The agents of the receiving State may not enter
them, except with the consent of the head of the mission.
2.The receiving State is under a special duty to take all appropriate steps to protect the premises
of the mission against any intrusion or damage and to prevent any disturbance of the peace of the
mission or impairment of its dignity.
3.The premises of the mission, their furnishings and other property thereon and the means of
transport of the mission shall be immune from search, requisition, attachment or execution.

Not even the Chinese government tried to enter the US Embassy to arrest the Chinese dissident Chen Guangchen. Even during the decades of the Cold War, defectors or dissidents were never seized from each other’s embassies. Murder in Samarkand relates in detail my attempts in the British Embassy to help Uzbek dissidents. This terrible breach of international law will result in British Embassies being subject to raids and harassment worldwide.

The government’s calculation is that, unlike Ecuador, Britain is a strong enough power to deter such intrusions. This is yet another symptom of the “might is right” principle in international relations, in the era of the neo-conservative abandonment of the idea of the rule of international law.

The British Government bases its argument on domestic British legislation. But the domestic legislation of a country cannot counter its obligations in international law, unless it chooses to withdraw from them. If the government does not wish to follow the obligations imposed on it by the Vienna Convention, it has the right to resile from it – which would leave British diplomats with no protection worldwide.

I hope to have more information soon on the threats used by the US administration. William Hague had been supporting the move against the concerted advice of his own officials; Ken Clarke has been opposing the move against the advice of his. I gather the decision to act has been taken in Number 10.


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