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Why We Were Falsely Arrested

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Posted on Sep 3, 2008

By Amy Goodman

  ST. PAUL, Minn.—Government crackdowns on journalists are a true threat to democracy. As the Republican National Convention meets in St. Paul, Minn., this week, police are systematically targeting journalists. I was arrested with my two colleagues, “Democracy Now!” producers Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar, while reporting on the first day of the RNC. I have been wrongly charged with a misdemeanor. My co-workers, who were simply reporting, may be charged with felony riot.

  The Democratic and Republican national conventions have become very expensive and protracted acts of political theater, essentially four-day-long advertisements for the major presidential candidates. Outside the fences, they have become major gatherings for grass-roots movements—for people to come, amidst the banners, bunting, flags and confetti, to express the rights enumerated in the Constitution’s First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

  Behind all the patriotic hyperbole that accompanies the conventions, and the thousands of journalists and media workers who arrive to cover the staged events, there are serious violations of the basic right of freedom of the press. Here on the streets of St. Paul, the press is free to report on the official proceedings of the RNC, but not to report on the police violence and mass arrests directed at those who have come to petition their government, to protest.

  It was Labor Day, and there was an anti-war march, with a huge turnout, with local families, students, veterans and people from around the country gathered to oppose the war. The protesters greatly outnumbered the Republican delegates.

  There was a positive, festive feeling, coupled with a growing anxiety about the course that Hurricane Gustav was taking, and whether New Orleans would be devastated anew. Later in the day, there was a splinter march. The police—clad in full body armor, with helmets, face shields, batons and canisters of pepper spray—charged. They forced marchers, onlookers and working journalists into a nearby parking lot, then surrounded the people and began handcuffing them.

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  Nicole was videotaping. Her tape of her own violent arrest is chilling. Police in riot gear charged her, yelling, “Get down on your face.” You hear her voice, clearly and repeatedly announcing “Press! Press! Where are we supposed to go?” She was trapped between parked cars. The camera drops to the pavement amidst Nicole’s screams of pain. Her face was smashed into the pavement, and she was bleeding from the nose, with the heavy officer with a boot or knee on her back. Another officer was pulling on her leg. Sharif was thrown up against the wall and kicked in the chest, and he was bleeding from his arm.

  I was at the Xcel Center on the convention floor, interviewing delegates. I had just made it to the Minnesota delegation when I got a call on my cell phone with news that Sharif and Nicole were being bloody arrested, in every sense. Filmmaker Rick Rowley of Big Noise Films and I raced on foot to the scene. Out of breath, we arrived at the parking lot. I went up to the line of riot police and asked to speak to a commanding officer, saying that they had arrested accredited journalists.

  Within seconds, they grabbed me, pulled me behind the police line and forcibly twisted my arms behind my back and handcuffed me, the rigid plastic cuffs digging into my wrists. I saw Sharif, his arm bloody, his credentials hanging from his neck. I repeated we were accredited journalists, whereupon a Secret Service agent came over and ripped my convention credential from my neck. I was taken to the St. Paul police garage where cages were set up for protesters. I was charged with obstruction of a peace officer. Nicole and Sharif were taken to jail, facing riot charges.

  The attack on and arrest of me and the “Democracy Now!” producers was not an isolated event. A video group called I-Witness Video was raided two days earlier. Another video documentary group, the Glass Bead Collective, was detained, with its computers and video cameras confiscated. On Wednesday, I-Witness Video was again raided, forced out of its office location. When I asked St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington how reporters are to operate in this atmosphere, he suggested, “By embedding reporters in our mobile field force.”

  On Monday night, hours after we were arrested, after much public outcry, Nicole, Sharif and I were released. That was our Labor Day. It’s all in a day’s work.

  Amy Goodman is the host of “Democracy Now!,” a daily international TV/radio news hour airing on more than 700 stations in North America.

  © 2008 Amy Goodman

  Distributed by King Features Syndicate


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By Chang13A, December 5, 2008 at 4:27 am Link to this comment
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Really nice how I enlisted to serve and protect this country and the rights of the people under the constitution to read about our own officers who swore the same pulling things that would make Hitler Proud.I find it odd that they always beat on the PASSIVE protestors.Yes they indeed they are shortsighted since behind those kids that are playing nice there are 100,000 fold that see and remember what displomacy gets here in the socalled land of the free.Now your stocks and bonds plummet.Your business starve, and so do your income taxes and reflective budgets while those same businesses fail.While not being the Maniacs they state we are we have given them a taste of the power behind the people.They jack up Oil prices we stop using it.They threaten us with forces we funded and we shut off the funding.This is just our SOFT game.When the government declares war on people the people will react.Mark my words by the end of this fiscal tax season you will see what power truly is and who holds it.So go ahead and brandish all those weapons you abuse.We are still watching and will be doing so when they are outdated and you beg for more.You will know us by the resounding “Hell NO!”.

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By John, October 4, 2008 at 1:43 pm Link to this comment
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Yep, get in there amongst those that plan to break the law, destroy property, and then you have the gall to tell the story differently depending on the blog/forum, and to whom you state your story.  Journalism?  How about trying the truth!  You wanted to make a scene, you embelish the story for your personal reasons, and expect lock step belief in your protestations. 

Okay, now, go tell the real truth and not your fantasy.

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By Anarcissie, September 16, 2008 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther: ’... Anarcissie, I think, meant short-sighted in a historical sense, he has a very long view of the historical process. ...’

In this case I think they may be short-sighted in the conventional, everyday meaning—not able or willing to look ahead more than a year or two.  If they destroy the country they are not going to have a lot to work with.  I suppose a good many of our great leaders could be converting their dollars to gold bricks and preparing to flee to an undisclosed location.  The rest would be the genuine lunatics and morons.

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By Folktruther, September 16, 2008 at 9:54 am Link to this comment

The psychopathology appears to be a communal form, Cyrena, a kind of institutialized psychopathy inherent in the deregulated captialist ideology.  They privately pooh-pooh for example the IDEA that there is a public interest, everybody being out for all they can get.

This may be endemic to American captialism, European capitalism being restricted and infiltrated with socialist ideas.  Chinese capitalism is a coordinated capitalism emerging from the equalitarian and communal communism orignially.

Power still belongs to the party hierarchy which is acheived by political means, not by the ability to make money.  Also China is a very old culture and the communalism is built into it.  The government still owns a third of the economy and thus has the power to effect reforms from the center.  given its initial backwardness, it is a better form of capitalism than either European or, especially, the US.

It is not a good idea for businessmen to control a power system.  They have too narrow an outlook based on profit and loss which results in an anti-people ideology that is largely devoid of humanistic ideas, or many ideas at all.  I think that this contributes to the psychopathy of the US leaders.

I agree it is a good idea to have psychologists like Frank Cajon analyzing the US power system.  If they can be pointed in the right direction and avoid some of the vacuous jargon and conventional identification with power, it is conceivable that they could say some interesting things.

Anarcissie, I think, meant short-sighted in a historical sense, he has a very long view of the historical process.

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By cyrena, September 15, 2008 at 10:08 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther writes:

•  “And what is amazing to me, they don’t seem to care.  Bush has said, in answer to a question of how he will be conceived historically, oh, we’ll all be dead then so it doesn’t matter.”

Folktruther, I swear he said the same thing about Global Warming: “what difference does it make, we’ll all be dead anyway.” I swear he did. Wish I could find it.

And, he and Cheney really DON’T care. That’s the bottom line. They have achieved their goals, (or most of them) and what Cheney can’t finish up before the end of the year, he’ll just continue to control from abroad…Dubai specifically.

Now I would agree with the fact that GW himself is probably insane. But, there are so many types of insanity, so we’d need Frank Cajon or another pro to really break it down for us. (my long ago BA in the topic isn’t gonna cut it). But, if I were weighing in on it, just as a lay person, I’d say GW is a psychopath, and LESS intelligent than most of them. (psychopaths are generally of above average intelligence, and I have to say that GW is simply NOT) Psychopaths can also be quite personable, (think Ted Bundy) and I’ve heard that GW can be that as well. I don’t think he’s TOTALLY retarded, but then, it’s hard to know, because I also don’t think that he could ever manage to get through any given day on his own, without considerable direction from his keepers.

BUT, I don’t believe for an instant, that any of his keepers are the LEAST BIT ‘short sighted’. Not by any stretch of the imagination. And, that includes GW as well. They have ALWAYS had plans for THEMSELVES, and folks like Cheney have lain-in-wait for the opportunity to see them through. So, it is a gross oversight or undersight, (however we wanna call it) to assume that they are short sighted, or that they don’t care. They DO care, and it is very much about fulfilling their own long made plans for themselves. It’s the rest of us that don’t matter.

And as depressing as it is to accept, there is still a massive failure (on the part of most Americans) to see this for what it is. I can tell that just by the constant appraisals of George W Bush, when in fact it is Richard B Cheney and his secret staff who should be under the microscope. Now of course that is nearly impossible to manage because they have run the most secret organization since the Illuminati. Still, most of us have been barking up the wrong trees for a very long time now.

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By KDelphi, September 15, 2008 at 9:51 pm Link to this comment

When the govt no longer serves the people, the people need to replace it.  People create govts.—they are not handed down by gods,and the constitution is not a sacred document. We can amend it—as many times the majority likes.

There is no longer a majority of self righteous religious puritans in the US. The elites keep their power through money, and throw the opiate of the masses to the crowd. If we stop taking it, perhaps we can se more clearly how much the govt has been screwing the average perosn for a very long time.

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By Anarcissie, September 15, 2008 at 8:54 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther: Wilheim-Bismark was statist and fought off the German working class, led by marxists, by social welfare measures.  I can’t think of another regime that destroyed social welfare measures of government like the Bushites.

Well, there is a lot of government largesse.  Giving it to poor people seems to rile the electorate, so it is reserved for the rich.

I don’t think they are stupid, I think they are crazy. ...

That’s certainly a possibility.  Or they could be a short-sighted gang of thieves.  Much of the population seems to admire that sort of thing.

One should probably recall from time to time that the U.S. was founded by religious fanatics, gentlemen adventurers, soldiers of fortune, criminals, slavers, and slaves.  Not the sort of population likely to establish traditions of foresight, temperance, and rationality.

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By KDelphi, September 15, 2008 at 8:43 pm Link to this comment

I would agree with Folktruther. I think people underestimate Bush’s actual intellectual ability. It think he could actually be a little above average. But, what the hell good does it do, if you have no sense of justice, conscience, and are so dogged in your beliefs that they wont move, no matter what evidence is presented.

He also did alot of drugs—alot more than were really brought to light. At least that’s what people who went to college with him say.

It is judgement and sensitivity that are lacking. Not grey matter.

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By Folktruther, September 15, 2008 at 8:13 pm Link to this comment

Wilheim-Bismark was statist and fought off the German working class, led by marxists,  by social welfare measures.  I can’t think of another regime that destroyed social welfare measures of government like the Bushites.

I don’t think they are stupid, I think they are crazy.  Hobsbawm, also a long time marxist, agrees.  They appear to be in the grip of a demented ideology that is leading the country into ruin, and has changed the power system to make it difficult to impossible to change it back.

And what is amazing to me, they don’t seem to care.  Bush has said, in answer to a question of how he will be conceived historically, oh, we’ll all be dead then so it doesn’t matter.

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By Anarcissie, September 15, 2008 at 1:30 pm Link to this comment

4canning: ‘Silly retort, nearly identical to those previously made in rejecting the words “American fascist.” Racial preference was not established by law during the Weimar Republic in the 1920s.  Yet, the Nazis, led by one Adolf Hitler, began their movement during the 1920s.  Using your logic, there were no German Nazis until Hitler seized power and elevated racial preference to the status of law. ...’

American rightists are in power.  The differences between them and the Nazis and other fascists is not one being in control of the government and the other not.

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By Anarcissie, September 15, 2008 at 1:06 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther: ’... You could argue that the US inherited not only British imperialism but the incipient Nazi imperialism to justify your pet nomenclature.’

Speaking of die Reiche, the one which G. W. Bush’s regime most closely resembles, in my opinion, is not the third but the second, that of Wilhelm and Bismarck, known locally as the Kaiserreich.  One observes the same combination of nationalism (but not explicit racism), militarism, and imperialism.  Kaiser Wilhelm was also a fellow with “problems”, although he does not seem to have played the moron quite as successfully as George W. Bush.  I think the main difference is that while Germany’s industrial base was built up under K.W., broad deindustrialization, as far as I can tell, is continuing in the U.S., apparently on the assumption that the Empire will always be able to control the workshops of China, India, the Four Tigers, and so on—an assumption I sure wouldn’t make.  But then, these are the same people who, when the Russian ruling class wanted to buddy up with them, kicked them repeatedly in the teeth and created a new, wholly gratuitous enemy.  They may be wise guys, yet seem none too bright.

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By Folktruther, September 15, 2008 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

Alright, cann4ing, since you feel so strongly about “Reichwing”, I authorize your use of it, but only among your friends and family. You can’t use it generally because, as Anaricissie pointed out in an insufficently snotty way, it’s racist.

Well, alright its ethnist, a neologism that does not have the same emotional force. (ethnocentric has too many letters and not the same connotations)  It discriminates agaist Germanic heritages, which,now that I think of it, includes mine. The Nazi regime existed over half a century ago, cann4ing, and you have to stop living in the past.  New oppressions have arisen among the old and you have to keep up.

The generic term among the left is “fascist.”  But you raise an interesting point, since perhaps a fourth or a fifth of the US has or had a Germanic heritage, and part of the US ruling class, led by Bush’s grandfather was in favor of a Nazi-type coup when Roosevelt was elected.  And the US brought over many Nazi’s who fit right into our political system. 

You could argue that the US inherited not only British imperialism but the incipient Nazi imperialism to justify your pet nomenclature.  But only among your family.

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By cann4ing, September 15, 2008 at 8:02 am Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, September 14 at 3:50 pm #

  Folktruther: ‘...Well, you are quite right about the racism, cann4ing, the same kind in Nazi Germany, South Africa and Israel.  But the power systems that instituionalize and implement it are different. ...’

There is one important difference: in the three states mentioned, racial preference is or was established by law.
__________________________________

Silly retort, nearly identical to those previously made in rejecting the words “American fascist.”  Racial preference was not established by law during the Weimar Republic in the 1920s.  Yet, the Nazis, led by one Adolf Hitler, began their movement during the 1920s.  Using your logic, there were no German Nazis until Hitler seized power and elevated racial preference to the status of law.

Under that reasoning, even those who openly state they are members of the American Nazi Party could not be seen as Nazis because racial preference is not written into law.

Using that same gap in logical reasoning, one would have to conclude that the US was run by Nazis from the late 19th Century and into at least the late 1960s, for many of our Southern states applied segregation through Jim Crow laws.  And even where segregation was not legally mandated, the white majority insured de facto segregation through restrictive covenants in the deeds to homes that prevented the sale of property to African Americans.

Yes, the U.S. Constitution purports to provide equal protection and due process, but that hasn’t prevent racial profiling or the arbitrary wholesale arrests of Arabs after 9/11 or, more recently, the mass arrests of Mexican and Latin American immigrants who are shuttled off to privately run prisons or worse.

Have there been formal legal differences between each of the states you mention?  Yes.  Are there similarities of philosophy and dehumanized concept of the other, especially as it pertains to the impact of the brutal policies carried out in the name of the “Homeland.”  That too is a resounding yes.  The similarities far outweigh the differences.

Ever ask yourself what the historical antecedent of a Department of “Homeland Security” is?  Reich wing conveys it perfectly.

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By Anarcissie, September 15, 2008 at 6:26 am Link to this comment

Folktruther—that’s the general you (anybody).  My language would be clearer if I had used one but our interlocutors are already upset with my pseudo-academic snottiness; God knows what they’d think if I became that formal.

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By Folktruther, September 14, 2008 at 9:55 pm Link to this comment

But Anarcissie, the point I was making was that the power system of the Nazis was DIFFERENT than that of the American power system.  At least so far.

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By Anarcissie, September 14, 2008 at 4:50 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther: ’...Well, you are quite right about the racism, cann4ing, the same kind in Nazi Germany, South Africa and Israel.  But the power systems that instituionalize and implement it are different. ...’

There is one important difference: in the three states mentioned, racial preference is or was established by law and overtly promulgated by the government.  In the United States, racial preference is not only not established by law, it’s forbidden by the Constitution, and nominally rejected even by most rightists and social conservatives.  The Republicans may intend to exterminate minorities, but if so they’ve been very secretive about the plan.

If you can’t see any difference between American rightists in general and Nazis, your perceptions have extremely low resolution and sensitivity.  As a major and important principle of war is “Know your enemy,” I can hardly guess how you will be able to proceed.  In fact, I think it’s very possible that when the real Nazis show up, as they may, you won’t recognize them.

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By cann4ing, September 14, 2008 at 4:45 pm Link to this comment

Cyrena, I chose to ignore the insult, though it was directed at me as well as you.  I considered the source.

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By cyrena, September 14, 2008 at 4:40 pm Link to this comment

Amongst all the gallons of spilled ink, Folktruther writes:

•  “Like the poisonous Cyrena, you cannot argue with anyone without denigrating them personally, a characteristic of the Gop neocons that is being incorporated into the Dem neolibs, as the Elite poltiical consensus moves to the right historically.”

Why all the dramatic and slanderous rhetoric just with ME Folktruther? I’m not the only one who posts opinions and observations here that disagree with your own? And, I don’t even ALWAYS disagree with you. In fact, I probably agree with you more often than not, but there’s always gonna be a problem when you put words in other folks’ mouths, or attribute them with thoughts that they don’t hold.
So, why ME? Why does a person with a handle with the word ‘truth’ in it, have such an issue dealing with any ‘truths’ other than their own?

You started off this way you know..straight out of the box, insulting those who have been posting here for ages. Now it all of US who are the bad guys/girls?

I think NOT! In fact, you’re just like all the rest of the bullies who love to dish it out, but can’t take the same in an equals vs equals relationship or discussion/argument.

The rest of this post from you, just like all of the others, displays your inherent bitterness and antagonism toward anyone who holds a different viewpoint, and you seem to specifically hate anyone who is inclined toward academic references or non-partisan, non-emotional reasoning.

What a bitter and hateful person you give yourself away to be…a real bigot if there ever was a textbook example of one.

In fact, for every accusation that you level at some many of us here, it is YOU who are guilty.

If we don’t buy your whole package, then you turn it on it’s side and complain that it is WE who are disingenuous, or guilty of labeling. You accuse OTHERS of being charlatans, or frauds, and you do it quite liberally. It speaks volumes, but maybe not what you think it does.

So, was this all part of your MO as a communist trying to organize communist workers on the docks of the Los Angeles piers and harbors that you mentioned a while back? Maybe this is why it didn’t work.

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By cann4ing, September 14, 2008 at 4:23 pm Link to this comment

Yes, Folktruther, I haven’t forgot the Latinos.  At least dating back to the Chinese Exclusion Act, perhaps earlier, immigrant bashing has always been capitalism’s means to divide the working class and get them to fight one another for the table scraps.

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By Folktruther, September 14, 2008 at 4:05 pm Link to this comment

Sorry, Anarcissie, I didn’t mean to put words in your mouth or thoughts in your truth.

Well, you are quite right about the racism, cann4ing, the same kind in Nazi Germany, South Africa and Israel.  But the power systems that instituionalize and implement it are different. It’s a small point, I agree with Anarcissie, (and possibly you.)  I respect your efforts to document the horrors perpetrated against Muslims.  They are now rounding up Latinos as well.

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By cann4ing, September 14, 2008 at 3:38 pm Link to this comment

So, Anarcissie & Folktruther, if you read my next three posts in reverse order, you will see why I believe the phrase “Reich winger” is appropriate.  Since we agree to disagree, I fully expect that you will not use it.  But I will.

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By cann4ing, September 14, 2008 at 3:21 pm Link to this comment

Consider the October 29, 2005 angry tirade of Michael Savage spewed out over his nationally syndicated radio show, The Savage Nation.  “Yee-haw!  This is America—this is America that those Islamic-fascist, robe-wearing, throwback bums have never seen!”  He repeats three times “Let’s bring it on!  Bomb Iran, bring our boys home now;” then adds a call for vigilante justice: “Get every hunter in America armed to the teeth!  Throwback bastards!  I’m so sick of them!  I’m so sick of the brainwashing about Islam and Muslims and the Koran!  Shove it!  Shove it all!  I’m sick of it!”
   
Writing about Muslims on September 12, 2001 for the National Review, Ann Coulter said, “We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity.”  While the remark got her canned from the National Review online, numerous papers continue to carry her columns as her gaunt face, scraggy blond hair and very active “hostile imagination” continues to darken screens on the cable TV networks.  “We’re always happy to have her on,” Tucker Carlson announced during a March 5, 2007 airing of MSNBC’s Tucker.  “She’s great TV.  She makes smart points.  She’s courageous.  She’s…a very talented writer….”

In a December 21, 2005 column, Carlson’s “great TV” “talented writer” made one of her “courageous,” “smart points:”  “I think the government should be spying on all Arabs, engaging in torture as a televised spectator sport, dropping daisy cutters wantonly throughout the Middle East and sending liberals to Guantanamo.” 

Of course, the testy Ms. Coulter does not limit her opprobrium to Arabs and Muslims.  Her pathological hatred for the objectified other extends to any who do not share her narrow worldview, especially liberals.  Appearing on CNBC’s Kudlow & Cramer on February 7, 2005, when discussing whether the U.S. military was targeting journalists, Coulter said, “Would that it were so!”  In a January 10, 2005 article appearing in the New York Observer, Coulter was quoted as saying:  “I’m getting a little fed up with hearing about, oh, civilian casualties.  I think we ought to nuke North Korea right now just to give the rest of the world a warning.”  In Cruel and Unusual, Mark Crispin Miller quotes Coulter’s earlier remark at a right-wing conference:  “We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed too.”

Glenn Beck is not one to be outdone by America’s Eva Braun.  During a May 11, 2006 Clear Channel radio broadcast of The Glenn Beck Program, Beck said:  “I say we nuke the bastards.  In fact, it doesn’t have to be Iran.  It can be everywhere, any place that disagrees with me.” 

Other than the variation in the object of their irrational hatred (Arabs as opposed to Jews) please explain how their mindset provides a meaningful distinction from, say, a member of the American Nazi Party.

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By cann4ing, September 14, 2008 at 3:15 pm Link to this comment

In both a book and a documentary, “Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People,” Jack Shaheen, a Prof, Emeritus of Mass Communications at So. Ill. U., unveiled the results of his personal study of how Arabs were depicted in more than one thousand movies dating back to the first silent films of the 1880s.  As noted in a review by Egypt Today, Hollywood employs “the generic ‘Ali Baba kit’ comprising of lecherous, barbaric Arab men flanked by erotic belly dancers.”  Just as African American men were cast as lusting after white women in the Jim Crow era, these early films depicted the “prize of every Sheikh’s harem” as “the abducted American woman who bravely fights off her sinister master’s sexual advances.”

These morphed into something far more sinister.  Egypt Today’s review explained:  “Hollywood’s epic battles between good and evil.  Arabs and Muslims make some of the best generic villains.  These bad guys are one-dimensional killers, bloodthirsty and often fanatically religious or nationalistic terrorists….When Arabs and Muslims are not terrorizing Americans or kidnapping their women; they are buying up the country and being the source of America’s economic troubles.”

Shaheen points to a rant by the character Howard Beale from the 1970s movie, Network, in which Beale not only expresses rage against the system in general but especially against a perceived financial takeover by Arabs.  “Listen to me, God damn it!”  Beale shouts.  “The Arabs are simply buying us!  There’s only one thing that can stop them!  You!” 
“This kind of anger, the anger born of fear, all of it in response to a perceived conspiracy and threat by a specific group of people, well,” Shaheen observes, “we’ve seen and heard this before.  If we look at the anti-Semitic propaganda of the Nazis, at its core is an identical type of economic threat.  This economic myth even made its way into children’s books.  Sadly, the popular image of Jews in Nazi propaganda resembles the popular image of Arabs in some of our most beloved Hollywood movies.”

Neil Simon’s Chapter Two underscores the disparity between the presently dehumanized Arab and the formerly dehumanized African-American.  The film begins with the protagonist, George Schneider, returning from London.  “How was London?” his brother asks.  “Full of Arabs,” Schneider replies.  “Imagine,” Shaheen states, “”if he had said, ‘Full of blacks,’ ‘Full of Jews’….”

One does not have to “imagine.”  When Don Imus disparaged the Rutgers’ women’s basketball players as “nappy-headed hos,” it brought forth a firestorm of protest that ultimately led to his dismissal by MSNBC television and CBS radio,  as well it should have.  Yet, American media pundits regularly disparage Arabs, even call for their wholesale slaughter, and, almost universally, they do so without adverse repercussions to their careers.

examples on next post

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By cann4ing, September 14, 2008 at 3:04 pm Link to this comment

Sorry, Anarcissie & Folktruther, but I find your arguments against the phrase “Reich winger” unpersuasive.  Is the 21st Century Republican Party the National Socialist Party.  Well, no not exactly, but that does not mean that many who call themselves Republicans do not have a mind set that is, at times, indistinguishable from that held by the Nazis, and, I dare say, when you invade another country, kill more than one million of its brown-skinned people, whom your forces openly apply the racist term, “rag head,” when you assault the rule of law, spy on your own citizens, advocate arbitrary arrest and detention, and apply the widespread use of brutal forms of torture, I would say that the only things that differ in terms of the results of application of their philosophies is that 21st Century Republicans have not yet created death camps; that where their target has been all things Arab or Muslim, the dehumanized other for the Nazi was principally the Jew, though certainly their racism was also applied against those of Russian or Slavic ancestry.

You two think we Americans are somehow exceptional; that none of us can be considered Nazis, yet the reality is that we live in a culture in which Arabs and Muslims have been the object of dehumanizing propaganda with in the U.S. that is remarkable similar to that which emerged from the Nazis.

(more in my next post).

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By Anarcissie, September 14, 2008 at 1:54 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther: ’...  It was this regidity and inferiority that Anarcissie was objecting to. ...’

No, I was only objecting to “reichwing”, which I objected to for just the reasons I gave.  I don’t know about anyone’s degree of rigidity or comparative intellectual status, although I do have some suspicions about certain public officials.  I really don’t care about “reichwing” much one way or the other, but it did seem to touch a nerve and I’m usually willing to discuss rhetoric is tedious detail if anyone wants to play.

I brought up Lieberman because I wanted to give an example of someone who is certainly a rightist, at least by the standards of most people who post on this website, but who I don’t think can reasonably be associated with the Third Reich.  (I have to assume it is this Reich which is being alluded to, and not the Holy Roman Empire.)

I suppose one might also complain that the gibe unfairly disparages Germans.

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By KDelphi, September 14, 2008 at 9:27 am Link to this comment

folktruther—damn straight! My brother-in-law (not to bring him up again) is a law professor at NYU, and he says the same thing your wife does. He is highly educated, but does not use it as a tool to demean peole and make himself feel superior. He realizes that he got there, not only through hard work, but, with a supportive family, some family money and a dogged desire to put it to good use in the cause of justice.

I’ve seem him fight like a pitbull (without lipstick) in the court room, against the big interests that the Dems refuse to even acknowledge. But, he never uses it to assert “intellectual dominance”. That is why I respect him so much.

He was also a cab driver in NYC for 8 yrs. , so he is well aware of the anxieties of people who are not as fortunate as he, and tries to do something about that—he does not think that they are “dumb”, and, knows that, through questioning and leading (sometimes following) you are much more likely to open a person’s eyes and change the face of the US.

I approved this “so inspiring” message.

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By Folktruther, September 14, 2008 at 9:09 am Link to this comment

We are not arguing, at least I’m not, that the Bushites are not instituting a police state of some kind: only that it is not the same kind as the Nazis.

It is a gangster police state rather than a military police state so the ideology and institutions are different.  ‘Reichwing’ obscures the differences.  The American police state may declare martial law, in which case the similarities would be more pronounced, and this is always a threat.  But a ganster police state can still have a veneer of liberal institutions and ideology, devoid of power and meaning.  It consissts of three aspects.

1.Unregulated capitalism at home and abroad, leading to increased inequality both within and between states.  Nazi corporativism required a strong state.  The regulatory function of the US government is being destroyed to drown the govenment in a bathtub.

2. Gangster brutality to inforce this increased inequality, sanitized as much as possible by concealment and euphemisms. Nazi brutality was more militarized, systematic and par of the natural order of things.  At least so far.

3. Super deception.  All class-based polities deceive the people they rule, religion being the classic example hijacked for power purposes by the power system.  But since the 2000 Coup and the 9/11-anthrax homicide, irrationality has reached surreal proportions.  Contrary to American propaganda, Nazi ieology had an intellectual base, and most German scholars, scientists and mathematicians supported it.  Just as most ofthe Educated Americans support the American police state.

The Jewish background of some Nazi’s were known to the German authorities although kept quiet among the Nazi rank and file for obvious reasons.  Just as devient racial origins would be kept hidden by KKK members.
                ***
Anarcissie is quite rational, cann4ing, he just differs from your midbrow American mainstream view.

You, in common with many lawyers, divide people into:

1. those who agree with you.

2. lawyers

3. idiots.

Like the poisonous Cyrena, you cannot argue with anyone without denigrating them personally, a characteristic of the Gop neocons that is being incorporated into the Dem neolibs, as the Elite poltiical consensus moves to the right historically.

This is inevitable as you support Dem leaders who increasingly oppose the issues you espouse.  The attack on journalists, part of the increasing gangster police state, is supported, by silence, by the Dems, who’s silence gives consent as complicit enablers.

You identify with American ideology, which you call-heh,heh,heh—Democratic Socialism.  Having been Educated by Amerian political science, the most reactionary of the many sub-discplines of social science, this combines with the conservative legal Education which so many members of the US political class have.

My wife, who supervises lawyer briefs, maintains that 60% of lawyers are incompetant and should be disbarred.  Usually this stupidity combines with arrogance to justify it. Your saying that Anarcissie is incaptable of rationale [sic] discourse, or that I don’t have a clue, is the inaccurate abuse of a rigid and inferior mind.  It was this regidity and inferiority that Anarcissie was objecting to.
            ***
I attribute Anarcissie’s larger worldview, at least partially, to his lack of the ideological regimentation inherent in Education in the social scinces and allied fields. 

I suggest to you, cann4ing, that the greatest essayists and artists in the English language in the 20th century, starting with Mark Twain and G.B. Shaw, and continuing with Menken, James Baldwin, Doris Lessing, George Orwell and Gore Vidal, all had one thing in common.

They were uneducated.  None of them attended college and many of them did not finish high school.  Doris Lessing regreted this so much she went back to school. But she was so horrified by what she found that there that she warned everyoene against it

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By Anarcissie, September 14, 2008 at 5:20 am Link to this comment

cann4ing: ‘You crack me up, Anarcissie.  Your world Manichean world view is as simplistic as that held by George Bush.  Every thing has to be fit into simplistic categories—Nazi, Zionist, Republican, Democrat.  There are no subtleties, no ability to see common threads of mind-set or ideology.  It’s all black or white; no gray.

Now you’ve understood my complaint about “reichwing” and have only to apply it.

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By cyrena, September 13, 2008 at 10:35 pm Link to this comment

re cann4ing to Anarcrissie

If I say that there is an eerie similarity to the crowded, walled-in Warsaw Ghetto of 1942 and the crowded, walled-in Gaza of 2008, you reply—so you’re saying that Joe Lieberman is a Nazi.

~~~~

I was *wondering* how Joe Lieberman got involved!! Thought maybe I’d fallen down a crack in the school yard or something.

As for ‘degrees’, I’m not so sure how much of a ‘benefit’ they are. I’ve been supporting myself since I was 17, and while I’ve certainly got plenty of them ‘on the books’ I’ve never bothered collecting all of them. I may get around to it now that I don’t have anything better to do. Then again, maybe not. Just depends on how much bureaucracy is involved.

BUT, as we know, ‘degrees’ and education aren’t dependent on one another, and it’s the education that matters, far more than the ‘end symbol’. Education is pretty much a ‘must have’ in some form or fashion. Without it, critical thinking becomes elusive.  That’s not to say that it’s impossible, but the 21st Century simply requires more critical thinking than what might have sufficed 50 years ago. 

Now of course the university isn’t the only place to get the education, and it isn’t even enough. Experience and exposure make the difference in worldviews. Tiny world views generally accompany tiny minds, with limited exposure to how the real world actually operate. Example: GW Bush.

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By cann4ing, September 13, 2008 at 8:30 pm Link to this comment

You crack me up, Anarcissie.  Your world Manichean world view is as simplistic as that held by George Bush.  Every thing has to be fit into simplistic categories—Nazi, Zionist, Republican, Democrat.  There are no subtleties, no ability to see common threads of mind-set or ideology.  It’s all black or white; no gray.

If I say that there is an eerie similarity to the crowded, walled-in Warsaw Ghetto of 1942 and the crowded, walled-in Gaza of 2008, you reply—so you’re saying that Joe Lieberman is a Nazi.

When I explain that I never said that; explaining that I am merely stressing the many things that the Zionists and the Nazis have in common (e.g., racist ideology, a dehumanized conception of the other that is translated into a brutalization of the other)—a rather tragic irony given the historical situation in which the former victims of oppression are now the oppressor, you come back with the idiotic “first there is a Nazi, then there is no Nazi.”  Nuance and analogy do not appear to be your strong suit.

Yes, I can see from your writing that you have not set foot in an academic institution for 50 years.  Perhaps that explains your inability to engage in rationale discourse.  How sad.

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By Anarcissie, September 13, 2008 at 6:23 pm Link to this comment

cann4ing: ‘No one implied that Reich winger means a formal link to the Nazi Party.  That is “your” construction, one I might add that exalts form over substance.

To me, at least, the phrase “Reich winger” implies a Nazi-like or at least fascist-like mind set—the mindless assault on reason that accompanies the process of dehumanization that has much infected the 21st Century Republican Party, Karl Rove, Sarah Palin and Zionists, be those Zionists Jewish, Christian or atheist.’


First there is a Nazi, then there is no Nazi, then there is….

Uh-oh, a Sixties allusion.

By the way, for those of you who are unaccountably interested: I haven’t set foot in an academic institution for going on fifty years, unless you count walking though one to get to the other side.  I’ve been supporting myself since I was 19, and I can assure you it was without the benefit of any sort of degree.  I don’t know why it’s relevant, but there it is anyway.

Another by the way:  the Nazis weren’t mindless.  That is one of the more unpleasant aspects of their collective career.

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By cann4ing, September 13, 2008 at 2:46 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther, no doubt there could have been members of the Nazi Party who were Jewish, but that would require hiding one’s true identity, perhaps possible for a German Jew.  For any member of the Nazi Party to stand up amongst his peers and say, “I am a Jew” would have been an invitation for a free ride to a concentration cam.  For an African-American, it would be a bit difficult to hide one’s identity.  The bedsheets those idiots wear doesn’t cover everything.

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By PatrickHenry, September 13, 2008 at 2:30 pm Link to this comment

By Folktruther, September 13 at 9:29 am #

The department of homeland security is hardly a democratic invention.

Just the nazi-esque name of it sends a message. 

Having a rabid zionist, PNAC loving, dual national Reich winger at its head only serves to galvanize my opposition to it.

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By cann4ing, September 13, 2008 at 2:18 pm Link to this comment

By Folktruther, September 13 at 9:29 am #

The problem with the term “Reichwinger” is that it implies that US and Israeli despotosm [sic.] is formally similar to Nazi despotism.
_________________________

No one implied that Reich winger means a formal link to the Nazi Party.  That is “your” construction, one I might add that exalts form over substance.

To me, at least, the phrase “Reich winger” implies a Nazi-like or at least fascist-like mind set—the mindless assault on reason that accompanies the process of dehumanization that has much infected the 21st Century Republican Party, Karl Rove, Sarah Palin and Zionists, be those Zionists Jewish, Christian or atheist.

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By Folktruther, September 13, 2008 at 10:29 am Link to this comment

The problem with the term “Reichwinger” is that it implies that US and Israeli despotosm is formally similar to Nazi despotism.  And it isn’t.  Israel and the US have innovated historically a new form of police state, disguised by liberal institutions.  A Demcratic police state.  It is not necessary to cancel elections if the dominant parties if both of them hold essentially the same positions.

Cann4ing, you state that there could no more be a Jewish member of a Nazi party than a black member of the KKK.

There were many Jewish members of the German Nazi party.  The name of the book detailing them escapes me now but, as I remember (perhaps wrongly), the author was Israeli. 

They received special dispensations allowing them to join.  Some did not know that their ancestors were Jewish but some did, and rejected Judism as a racial characteristic.  A recent book by a radical Israeli conceives the whole notion of “a Jewish people” an invention of 19th century Zionism.

People tend to identify with their own oppression. 
This has been the basis of class-based power systems for the last five or ten millenniums.  The powerful identify with their Elitism and to a large extent the population has been taught from childhood to identify with power.  Including class power. 

As you do while prmoting democratic Socialism. Largely unconsciously I would imagine. Your identification with class-based Education and Information, and your identification with them as rationality, obscures that this ideology promotes the interests of power rather than that of the population ruled by power.

Power structures or polities could not exist if the powerful who have the Educated skills to promote the mainstream truth did not also possess the ideology that legitimates oppressive power.  In your case, while, I think sincerely, stating your opposition to oppressive power.

Mainstream Education and Information provides specialist truths,which are largely true, intermixed with ideological truths, which largely aren’t.  Outsiders, like Anarcissie and myself, challenge the mainstream truth in our different ways, but cannot do so successfully without the population being stripped of their power delusions that Educated truthers like yourself instill.

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By PatrickHenry, September 13, 2008 at 9:14 am Link to this comment

I agree with you both (cyrena and cann4ing).  I find Shenonymous and Anarcissie posts very valid and while I don’t always agree with them 100%, 90% would be an accurate assessment.

No disrespect was intended, I was only pointing out the similar academic vernacular.

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By KDelphi, September 13, 2008 at 9:13 am Link to this comment

cann4ing—well said.

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By cann4ing, September 13, 2008 at 9:01 am Link to this comment

No, Arnarcissie.  I did not say “Joe Lieberman is a Nazi.”  What I said was that what the Zionists have done to the Palestinians in Gaza bears an eerie resemblance to what the Nazis did to the Jews in the early days of the Warsaw Ghetto.  What I did was draw out comparisons in terms of the racist nature of both Zionist and Nazi ideology and a commonality of dehumanization.  And what I said was that ethnicity is not an impenetrable shield to the process of dehumanization, or as Prof. Zimbardo’s experiments and analysis reveal, that the process of dehumanization can lead otherwise good people to do very bad things.

The dramatic impact of dehumanization found its embodiment in the testimony of Vietnam veteran Scott Camile’s testimony at the February 1971 “Winter Soldier” hearings in Philadelphia.  After he described how members of his unit, in the presence of a Lt. Colonel, beheaded two people, leaving their heads on stakes in the middle of a field, Camile was asked whether the men in his unit felt they could do anything they wanted to the Vietnamese. Camile replied:  “It wasn’t like they were humans, like we were—you know, we were conditioned to believe that…this was for the good of our country, and anything we did was okay.  And like, when you shot someone, you didn’t think you were shooting a human.  They were a gook or a Commie, and it was okay.”

Everyone understands that there could no more be a Jewish member of the Nazi Party then there could have been an African-American member of the KKK.  But that does not prevent the perfectly valid observation that the Zionists have behaved “like Nazis.”

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By Anarcissie, September 13, 2008 at 8:13 am Link to this comment

cann4ing: ’... Actually, Anarcissie, if you make a comparative study of the present day Gaza strip to the early period in which the Nazis walled in Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto you can see striking similarities between the Nazi attitudes and treatment of Jews and the Zionist attitude and treatment of Palestinians.  If you believe that to be an exaggeration then you have not read Norm Finkelstein’s “Beyond Chutzpah.” ...’

All right, maybe you do think Lieberman is a Nazi.  In that case I think you’re failing to make important distinctions, which was the basis of my criticism of “reichwinger” in the first place.  But I will concede that calling Lieberman a “reichwinger”—or, more directly, a Nazi—would be logical enough in your case.  A rather broad brush you’ve got there.

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By cann4ing, September 13, 2008 at 7:56 am Link to this comment

I, for one, have often found posts by Shenonymous to be erudite and illuminating even on subjects with which we have disagreed.  Shenonymous and Anarcissie have both displayed an admirable intellect.  The difference is that Arnarcissie seems to think he is the sole repositor of vocabulary and takes on the infuriating stances of a “know-it-all” which is the source of my irritation with him.

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By cyrena, September 12, 2008 at 11:20 pm Link to this comment

By PatrickHenry, September 12 at 4:08 pm #
•  “cann4ing - Anarcissie reminds me of Shenonymous, remember her?”
Patrick Henry,

Shenonymous is still posting. I can’t remember right off the top of my head which thread she’s on now, but she’s posted as recently as today.

I don’t find any resemblance though, between her and Anarcissie, unless Anarcissie is also involved in academia. That would be the only thing in common, and we (or at least I) don’t even know that to be the case with Anarcissie.

Based on her posts, Shenonymous doesn’t hold an anarchists’ position or ideology. While I’m hesitant to categorize any particular ideology of political leanings in terms of ‘directions’ or even conservative/liberal during these crazy times, my impression is that those who seem to hold a loose agenda of anarchy are primarily in favor of eliminating what they have determined to be ‘main party’ politics. IOW, my sense is that they are ideologically associated with the promotion of any 3rd party candidate, and particularly since Hillary didn’t make it through the primaries. I don’t ‘know’ this to be the case with Anarcissie, but I do know that Shenonymous is working hard at exposing the farce (and the danger) of a McCain/Palin future, and is firmly committed to an Obama win.

That doesn’t appear to be the case with Anarcissie, but I could be wrong.

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By KDelphi, September 12, 2008 at 5:08 pm Link to this comment

Forinality—I did NOT say “reichwinger”, except as I referred to what i thught other people on the site meant by it. All I said was that Lieberman ia a Zionist. Is he not? Whether that is good or bad, depends on your own point of view.

I dont like extreme religious beliefs. I think that Zionism is such a set of beliefs and causes unnecessry violence.

Stop trying to paint me as anti-semetic, because i’m not. I think that “christian” Zionists are as bad or worse. I think that Zionism prevents peace inIsrael, as does extremist Islam.

I’m not a fan of religiosity, nationalism or classism.

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By PatrickHenry, September 12, 2008 at 5:08 pm Link to this comment

By KDelphi, September 12 at 9:00 am #

Don’t forget Israel is also an ethnocracy.  There are alot of atheists living there.

the vatican can be labeled a theocracy, but we don’t send billions in armaments there.

cann4ing - Anarcissie reminds me of Shenonymous, remember her?

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By cann4ing, September 12, 2008 at 4:39 pm Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, September 12 at 8:24 am #

  KDelphi: Anarcessie—No. It makes Lieberman a Zionist. That’s what my Jewish brother-in-law says, and I concur’


Okay.  And how does that attach Lieberman to the Third Reich, which I assume is what the “reich” in “reichwinger” is supposed to refer to?  Zionists are Nazis?

___________________________________

Actually, Anarcissie, if you make a comparative study of the present day Gaza strip to the early period in which the Nazis walled in Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto you can see striking similarities between the Nazi attitudes and treatment of Jews and the Zionist attitude and treatment of Palestinians.  If you believe that to be an exaggeration then you have not read Norm Finkelstein’s “Beyond Chutzpah.”

Both of these racist ideologies produce a dehumanization of the other.  In “The Lucifer Effect” Prof. Phillip Zimbardo describes this as “one of the central processes in the transformation of ordinary, normal people into indifferent or even wanton perpetrators of evil….a ‘cortical cataract’ that clouds one’s thinking and fosters the perception that other people are less than human…to see…others as enemies deserving of torment, torture, and even annihilation.”

Dehumanization is by no means unique to Nazi Germany.  To the contrary, Zimbardo observes, citing Sam Keen’s analysis of the “hostile imagination” in Faces of the Enemy,  it “is created by virtually every nation’s propaganda on its path to war….” 

“The process,” Zimbardo tells us, “begins with stereotyped conceptions of the other,…conceptions of the other as worthless, the other as all-powerful,…the other as a fundamental threat to our cherished values and beliefs.  With public fear notched up and enemy threat imminent, reasonable people act irrationally, independent people act in mindless conformity, and peaceful people act as warriors.  Dramatic visual images of the enemy on posters, television, magazine covers, movies, and the internet imprint on the recesses of the limbic system, the primitive brain, with the powerful emotions of fear and hate.”

It is a process that is missed by those with a slavish devotion to linguistic purity.  “Zionist” and “Nazi” are different words, you say, so how can they be linked, especially since the object of Nazi dehumanization was Jewish people and Zionists are Jewish?—well, actually, some of the most aggressive Zionists in the U.S. are Christians, but then Hitler claimed early on that he too was a Christian.

One’s ethnic status does not render them immune to the process of dehumanization.

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By KDelphi, September 12, 2008 at 4:18 pm Link to this comment

I didnt call him a “reichwinger”. I called him a Zionist.

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By Anarcissie, September 12, 2008 at 3:37 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi—my point was that Lieberman, although he’s one of McCain’s buddies, can’t reasonably be called a Nazi.  We can’t associate him with the Third Reich; he’s not shoving anyone in ovens, etc.  He is not a “reichwinger”, then, although he is certainly a right-winger (from my point of view).  Calling people like Lieberman “reichwinger” allows them a defense which is a distraction from the issues most of us believe are important.

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By KDelphi, September 12, 2008 at 10:00 am Link to this comment

I did not say that Zionists were “Nazis”. But, I do think that their rage is mis-directed. I understand the anger—I just dont undeerstand why it is directed as it is.

Also, Zionism, refers to a school of thought that, from what I have been told, thinks that the Israeli Jews are “destined by the Bible/Tora (sp?) to live in a certain place. If it is a Christian, it means that they think that “Jesus wil come back , only if the Jews are in the Holy Land” , but, that, when he does, Jews will have a ‘chance to convert” and everyone else, (except them, of course) wil burn for eternity.

If this is the case, almost any means are justified to “bring aobut the Rapture”, or to keep the Jewish people in the land they belong in. I believe in a Jewish homeland. I just dont believe in the extreme militaristic tactics used by the Israeli govt and military. (I dont belive in OUR militaristic tactics either!)

Israel is also a theocracy, as well as a limited Democracy. I dont believe in theocracies. (From what I understand, you cannot be an Israeli citizen unless your backgrou nd is Hebrew) I think the mixing of Church amd State is the cause of much war, death, poverty and general misery in the world.I realize that not all Israelis are extremely relgious—but the govt behaves as if it is a theocracy—otherwise, if their land claim is Biblical, what other right to they have to exist, as an exclusive state? I would like to see a two state solution or Carter’s proposal of “reunion”, but i dont know if it is possible. If it is, I dont know how to do it, or I would be in Norway, collecting my Nobel!

What would you think of the uS, if the majority of people decided it was a “christian” nation, and that you had to be christian to be a citizen? (We may be well on our way to that, anyway—horrors!) Anyway, that is my limited knowledge on the subject.

I think Reich (right) refers to the fascistic way that the neo-cons behave, along with their adherence to hte “Rapture” ideas. Lieberman has shown himself to be an adherent to the Zionist philosophy.That may not always be so horrible—but if it leads to death and destruction on a daily basis—something has to change or the situation will continue to worsen.

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By Anarcissie, September 12, 2008 at 9:24 am Link to this comment

KDelphi: Anarcessie—No. It makes Lieberman a Zionist. That’s what my Jewish brother-in-law says, and I concur’


Okay.  And how does that attach Lieberman to the Third Reich, which I assume is what the “reich” in “reichwinger” is supposed to refer to?  Zionists are Nazis?

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By KDelphi, September 12, 2008 at 7:34 am Link to this comment

Anarcessie—No. It makes Lieberman a Zionist. That’s what my Jewish brother-in-law says, and I concur

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By KDelphi, September 12, 2008 at 7:33 am Link to this comment

cann4ing—very interesting post. Thanks.

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By Anarcissie, September 12, 2008 at 7:01 am Link to this comment

So, I’ll ask this once again: Lieberman is a prominent and ardent supporter of McCain.  Does this make Lieberman a Nazi?

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By cyrena, September 11, 2008 at 10:34 pm Link to this comment

By Anarcissie, September 11 at 6:04 pm #

cyrena—I have merely been expressing my opinions about language.  I think “reichwing” and similar taunts are childish and communicate little except hostility.  And if you put them in a public place, I assume you’re exposing them for general comment.
~~~~~~

That’s cool Anarcissie, I’ve got no problems with your opinions about language in general. In fact, I’m a bit a language junkie myself, if only because I’m an academic. It’s what academics *DO* and really not at all the big deal that you seem to be making of it. But, it’s all in passing, and indeed my own comments were pretty ‘general’, despite being a response to cann4ing, which suggested that I agreed with him, and I still do.

So I guess the point that I was trying to make in my earlier post, (as diplomatically as I could) was that your lecturing ‘opinion’ was only that. YOUR opinion, and certainly not any more or less valid than my own. For me, the term, Reich Wing, works JUST FINE. But then, I’ve been intently studying the take-over since it began in 2001. In fact, I’ve even helped author a university course/seminar on The Authoritarian State, because it’s been important to study these models carefully, in order to understand what has taken place here.  It’s been extremely informative, and quite well accepted in our curriculum. (the course professor is brilliant, and this happens to be her field).

So, on more than one level, the term is very appropriate. (and cann4ing has provided you with several excellent resources). Maybe you don’t get that we have long ago become a police state, and we are as close to a fascist/totalitarian regime than we’ve ever been as an alleged sovereign nation state.

If you disagree, that’s just peachy as well. But, you can save the lectures. I’m grown, and I know what I think, and what I write. I’m perfectly comfortable with it, and I’m not inclined to ‘defend’ myself to somebody I don’t even know, who hasn’t provided any credentials that would be particularly impressive to me. Like I mentioned before, if you wanna put me on your payroll, or if you’ve somehow assigned yourself as my academic adviser, then your opinion might be important to me. Otherwise, it isn’t.

That was my earlier point. Hope I’ve articulated that better this time.

As for the communication of ‘hostility’, me thinks thou doest protest too much.

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By cann4ing, September 11, 2008 at 9:00 pm Link to this comment

Oh, I missed your comment to Cyrena, anarcissie.

You think Reich wing is “childish?”  I think you have such a fetish for linguistic rules that you miss the forest for the trees—a fetish that belies your self-description as a anarchist.

I did not invent it, but when I read it, I thought the words “Reich wing” were brilliant.  They convey in a succinct fashion a description that is far more accurate and meaningful to understanding the forces behind the Bush/Cheney regime than the term “right wing.”

Not fascist you repeatedly tell me—no basis for the “Reich wing” analogy?  Then please define for me how you see a significant difference to how the Bush regime utilized 9/11 as an excuse to launch an ongoing assault on multiple civil liberties—assaults not only found in the USA/PATRIOT Act but literally on display at the RNC where heavily armed riot police eviscerated the First Amendment rights of speech and assembly with the description of what the Nazis did in the immediate aftermath of the Reichstag fire.

Following the Reichstag fire, at Hitler’s urging, the cabinet agreed to present a decree to Hindenburg which then suspended key articles of the Weimar Constitution and declared that “restrictions on personal liberty, on the right of free expression, including freedom of the press, on the right of assembly and association, and violations of the privacy of postal, telegraphic and telephonic communications, and warrants for house searches, orders for confiscation as well as restrictions on property rights are permissible…” (Richard Evans, “The Coming of the Third Reich.”)

Take a look at Naomi Wolf’s “The End of America,” which while not the most academic of words, contains an excellent summary of the ten steps societies take in transforming to fascism, and I have added a few specifics, though one can see these were applied to greater or lesser degrees.  Those steps include the invocation of external and internal threats (e.g., al Qaeda; al Qaeda sleeper cells); the establishment of secret prisons (e.g., CIA black sites); develop a paramilitary force (Blackwater), infiltrate citizen groups; arbitrarily detain & release citizens (mass arrests at 2004 RNC where police used construction netting was used to sweep up citizens like schools of fish; pre-emptive arrests at 2008 RNC); target key individuals; restrict the press; cast criticism as “espionage” and dissent as “treason” (Rumsfeld—“Be careful what you say.”); Subvert the rule of law.

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By cann4ing, September 11, 2008 at 8:29 pm Link to this comment

Stated another way, Anarcissie, anarchism would be great if all men and women were angels.  One need look no further than Bush/Cheney or McCain/Palin to know that they are not.

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By cann4ing, September 11, 2008 at 8:20 pm Link to this comment

By Anarcissie

There are many examples of people following rules, indeed, very complex sets of rules, without government intervention or backing.  One such example is the use of language, which requires the observation of a syntax and lexicon more or less agreed upon by the communicating parties.

____________________________________

Bogus analogy deserving of a D grade.  Language and syntax are not arrived at by agreement.  Language is transmitted from parent to child; from teacher to student.  In short, language is acquired from the top down.

Anarchism within the context of political science entails the totality of interaction of human beings within a community.  The ability to communicate is but one element of inter-human relationships.  And anarchism’s rejection of enforceable rules is, in my humble opinion, both illogical and Utopian.

A truly democratic Socialism recognizes the need for laws.  It is the law, our constitutional system of governance, which purports to insure individual freedoms—speech, of or from religion, assembly, due process, privacy—rights that have much been under assault by the fascists of the Bush regime.  But democratic Socialism recognizes the need for the law to protect other freedoms—freedom from want, from fear, from hunger. 

Take the so-called anarchism of free-markets.  So called free-markets are brutal.  Consider health care.  The U.S. is the only major industrial country that applies free-market ideology to health care.  It treats health of our people as a commodity.  The result:  47 million uninsured; 18,000 die annually for no reason other than lack of health care.  Such a system is neither rational nor moral.

Democratic Socialism recognizes that the ideal society is one where the core values are egalitarian and stresses a mutuality of obligation to one another—as opposed to unrestrained capitalism which is devoted to maintaining and exacerbating inequality of wealth and power.  In the simplest of terms, the needs of the many outweigh the greed of the few.

When the UK passed a national health care law in 1947, it set down a rule that was designed for the collective good.  That law is an outstanding example of Democratic Socialism.  Pure Anarchism, even in its collective form, could not produce such a result for, without a law, such as that, it could not prevent a capitalist exploitation of health care arising simultaneously, especially if there is no law ensuring a binding mutuality of obligation that all members of such a society contribute towards the cost of such a system.

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By Anarcissie, September 11, 2008 at 7:15 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi—When I use the word anarchism I mean something like the definition quoted in the beginning of the Wikipedia article: “the view that society can and should be organized without a coercive state.”  And an anarchist would be one who believes in, professes or practices anarchism.

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By Anarcissie, September 11, 2008 at 7:04 pm Link to this comment

cyrena—I have merely been expressing my opinions about language.  I think “reichwing” and similar taunts are childish and communicate little except hostility.  And if you put them in a public place, I assume you’re exposing them for general comment.

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By KDelphi, September 11, 2008 at 6:46 pm Link to this comment

PatHen—LOL I stil glue obnoxious “postage paid” emvelopes to bricks or bags of old pieces of metal.I’d forgotten where I’d gotten the idea. BTW—it usually makes them stop!!

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By Anarcissie, September 11, 2008 at 6:41 pm Link to this comment

cann4ing: ’... If there are rules, there has to be an enforcement mechanism, e.g. rulers. If there are no rulers, no rules, then those individuals who believe in collectivism have no greater power than those who insist on individualism. ...’

This is incorrect.  There are many examples of people following rules, indeed, very complex sets of rules, without government intervention or backing.  One such example is the use of language, which requires the observation of a syntax and lexicon more or less agreed upon by the communicating parties.  Another are most of the common social procedures practiced in daily life.  Again, many people follow sets of rules, some of them elaborate, in order to participate in organized religions or other communities.  There have also been numerous instances of communities entirely without governments, although these tend to be wiped out when they encounter states, and thus we do not observe them much in the modern world.

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By cann4ing, September 11, 2008 at 2:58 pm Link to this comment

Take arnacissie’s wikipedia reference to anarchism and you see a philosophy entrapped within internal contradiction.

Wikipedia notes that “the elimination of all compulsory government.”  It then directs you to the Greek foundations of the word, “The term anarchism derives from the Greek αναρχω, anarcho, meaning ‘without archons’ or ‘without rulers.’”

If there is no compulsory government, no rulers, then there can be no rules other than that one individual cannot compel another to act or not to act.  “Anarchist schools of thought differ fundamentally, supporting anything from extreme individualism to complete collectivism.”  But whether one advances anarchism within the collective (communism, socialism) or individually (market capitalism), the organization of society into either collective or market-based capitalism requires a set of rules by which one has to operate.  If there are rules, there has to be an enforcement mechanism, e.g. rulers. If there are no rulers, no rules, then those individuals who believe in collectivism have no greater power than those who insist on individualism.

The branching out of anarchism into these divergent schools of thought is itself the product of anarchism’s internal contradiction as a means for social interaction.

So when I chided Anarcissie, who describes himself as an anarchist and thinks any who are not must have no concept of anarchist thought (a rather presumptuous arrogance as he applied it to me since in addition to a JD, I hold both undergraduate and graduate degrees in political science) because of his reference to rules contradicts the very essence of the anarchistic views he purports to espouse. 

But then, who am I to critique a know-it-all like Anarcissie.  After all, the man has already chastised a number of posters for having fun with the word “Reich wing”—suggesting, quite erroneously, “no one who doesn’t agree with” those stating it “would understand.” 

One does not have to agree with my political views—which favor Democratic Socialism as the only true form of democracy—in order to “get” the meaning of the words “Reich wing.”  Even the lame-brained Bill O’Reilly would “get” it, though he’d no doubt be offended by it.

My problem with Anarcissie is not his disagreement with my political philosophy.  It’s his galling, if not infuriating, arrogance in which he thinks he is the only one with an education or a valid opinion.

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By PatrickHenry, September 11, 2008 at 2:34 pm Link to this comment

Next to “Steal this book” by Abby Hoffman, one of the most profound books printed during my day, The Anarchist cookbook.

http://www.righto.com/anarchy/

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By cyrena, September 11, 2008 at 12:27 pm Link to this comment

“I think that kind of language will ensure that no one who doesn’t already agree with you will understand, or want to understand, what you’re saying.  Or worse, they will believe they do understand it, and that you’re just another hostile tribe hooting at them in classic primate style.  And what is it supposed to mean outside of that?  Is, say, Lieberman a Nazi?  Really?”

~~~~~~

What’s up with this Anarcisse? I was responding to a post from cann4ing, directed to me, about the term ‘Reich Wing’, coined by another poster. And yeah, I *do* think it’s pretty appropriate, seeing as how the US since 2001 has been following the path of the Germany of the 1930’s. In fact, it is 10000% appropriate. The similarities between that totalitarian takeover and the one we’ve undergone since The Coup of 2000, with Dick Cheney et al at the helm, are too overwhelming for anybody to miss.

So exactly what is your point in chastising me on language? Is this just for the sake of argument? Or, is it just a matter of anything *I* post needs to be attacked? I’m really curious, since I don’t believe this to have been worth any serious mention from you or anybody else actually. It was simply a response to a post directed to me, and to which I happened to agree. Cann4ing has been posting here for longer than I have, and while we don’t always happen to agree with each other on every single thing, I generally do agree with him.

So, what YOU think, in terms of whether or not someone is likely to agree with me, or approve of *my* language, is of no matter or consequence, at least not to me. Now when you put me on your payroll, there would be a definite incentive for me to use the language that you want me to use. Otherwise, well…you get my point.

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By KDelphi, September 11, 2008 at 12:10 pm Link to this comment

But what do YOU think that one is? An “anarchist”?

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By Anarcissie, September 11, 2008 at 12:07 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi—Wikipedia is all-knowing.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchism

There is also Bryan Caplan’s Anarchism FAQ. 
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/economics/bcaplan/anarfaq.htm

Bryan Caplan is a “market anarchist” and some anarchists of other flavors, and many non-anarchists, dispute his views, but I think the FAQ gives a fair overview of this variegated field of thought.

These two sites have numerous links and book citations.

I would recommend reading the Usenet newsgroups related to anarchism, but they are in sad decline these days.

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By KDelphi, September 11, 2008 at 10:54 am Link to this comment

Can someone here please refer me to some “anarchist thought”—or , at least, what you think it is? I’m confused as to exactly what people are saying an “anarchist” is. I hate to have to say this, its ridiculous—I’m not being confrontazational—I’m just asking for some links, OK?

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By Folktruther, September 11, 2008 at 9:32 am Link to this comment

You seem HAPPY with this state of affairs, Anarcissie.  I will pray for you.

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By Anarcissie, September 11, 2008 at 8:14 am Link to this comment

People in the institutions of the state, the established order, are not likely to be told to read the works of anarchists.  It’s a sort of underground culture.  Happier so, no doubt!  Also there is, of course, no canon, as there is with liberalism.

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By Folktruther, September 10, 2008 at 9:39 pm Link to this comment

Yeah, the right obfuscates and the left clarifies, both for power reasons.  But Cann4ing’s comment abour anarchists not having rules indicates an unfamiliarity with leftist thought outside the mainstream that may be equally or more important than the confusion of political language.

It appears that with the clearest language the US mainstream truth has a long way to go.

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By Anarcissie, September 10, 2008 at 4:29 pm Link to this comment

cann4ing: Now there’s hypocrisy for you.  Why are you talking about rules, anarcissie?  Didn’t you tell me you were an anarchist?

Anarchists talk about rules all the time.  Mostly they complain about them, it’s true, but anarchy doesn’t mean “without rules”, it means “without rulers”.  No anarchist worthy of the name would forbid people to have and use rules as long as observance of them was voluntary.  As I recall your complaint was that I was a “word cop” but I’m not compelling you, or anyone, to use any particular language; I’m just saying what I like, and what I think is effective.

For me, it’s an important issue, because I think clarity of language is revolutionary, given the ubiquitous pollution of public and even private discourse by the powerful.

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By dale, September 10, 2008 at 4:15 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

this is what you call “suppression”!!! this is AMERICA people…this cannot be allowed to happen anymore!

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By cann4ing, September 10, 2008 at 3:12 pm Link to this comment

Now there’s hypocrisy for you.  Why are you talking about rules, anarcissie?  Didn’t you tell me you were an anarchist?

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By Anarcissie, September 10, 2008 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

cann4ing: ‘Orwell’s Oceania had its “thought police.” In anarcissie and folktruther, TD has its “word police.”’

You mean it’s against the rules to talk about language?

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By cann4ing, September 10, 2008 at 2:26 pm Link to this comment

Orwell’s Oceania had its “thought police.”  In anarcissie and folktruther, TD has its “word police.”

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By Folktruther, September 10, 2008 at 9:30 am Link to this comment

The name calling bothers me too.  It is a substitute for thinking. Calling a political adversary a liar, or stupid, or a swine is simply childish, and immature polemic intimidates no one who is serious, and interferes with depth of one’s insight into political reality.

On the other hand, Anarcissie, if you don’t mind my saying so, I think you go to the opposite extreme.  A little more vigor in your opposition would give your historical insights, which are head and shoulders above the customary comments, more crediblity. 

I would suggest as Perfection my own blend of theory with vehemence.

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By Anarcissie, September 9, 2008 at 3:22 pm Link to this comment

cyrena: ’... Yep cann4ing, I think it fits them just perfectly, ALL of them, including the book banning, oil stealing/guzzling, caribou killing Palin. I can’t find anything the least bit ‘progressive’ about any of that, so of course the Reich Wing is perfect. ...’

I think that kind of language will ensure that no one who doesn’t already agree with you will understand, or want to understand, what you’re saying.  Or worse, they will believe they do understand it, and that you’re just another hostile tribe hooting at them in classic primate style.  And what is it supposed to mean outside of that?  Is, say, Lieberman a Nazi?  Really?

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By cyrena, September 9, 2008 at 1:31 pm Link to this comment

By cann4ing, September 8 at 8:36 pm #
Actually, Cyrena, I, for one, have adopted another poster’s phrase.  Instead of “right wing,” he referred to them as Reich wing.  Sort of fits Bush/Cheney or McCain/Palin don’t you think?
~~~~~

Yep cann4ing, I think it fits them just perfectly, ALL of them, including the book banning, oil stealing/guzzling, caribou killing Palin. I can’t find anything the least bit ‘progressive’ about any of that, so of course the Reich Wing is perfect.

It’s perfect because it’s damn near impossible to use old terminology of the pre-21st Century (at least that which is familiar to most Americans) to describe what has happened to us since 2001.

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By DOUGLAS FIELD, September 9, 2008 at 9:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

LETS ALL HOPE OUR MEDIA FRIENDS CONTINUE TO ALSO SHOW AN INTEREST IN REPORTING ON THIS AMERICAN HORROR FACING THESE (TENS OF THOUSANDS) FORGOTTEN AND TRAPPED POORER AMERICANS, AND HOW THIS PRESIDENTIAL CONTENDER HANDLES THIS VERY SERIOUS ISSUE FACING AMERICA’S LATINO AND BLACK AMERICAN COMMUNITIES ????


WITH 80% OF THE BLACK AMERICAN VOTERS SAYING THEY SUPPORT SENATOR OBAMA IN THIS PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, IT IS ONLY FAIR FOR EVERYONE TO KNOW PRIOR BEING ELECTED OUR NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES HOW THIS DEMOCRATIC SENATOR TRULY FEELS ABOUT THIS AMERICAN JUDICIAL HORROR CONTINUING TO INFLICT GRAVE HARM ON THE BLACK AMERICAN FAMILIES AND THEIR COMMUNITIES NATIONWIDE ??????

*** WHEN GOD’S FACE BECAME VERY RED ***
THE US SUPREME COURT GAVE ENEMY COMBATANTS FEDERAL APPEAL HC RIGHTS LAWYERS AND PROPER ACCESS TO US FEDERAL COURTS,AND POORER AMERICANS (MANY EVEN ON DEATH ROW) ARE DENIED PROPER FEDERAL APPEAL LEGAL REPRESENTATION TO OUR US FEDERAL COURTS OF APPEAL, AND ROTTING IN AMERICAN PRISONS NATIONWIDE ?????????


***THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ARE $LOWLY FINDING OUT HOW EA$Y IT I$ FOR MIDDLE CLA$$ AND WORKING POOR AMERICAN$ TO FALL VICTIM TO OUR U$ MONETARY JUDICIAL $Y$TEM.

****WHEN THE US INNOCENT WERE ABANDONED BY THE GUILTY ****
The prison experts have reported that there are 100,000 innocent Americans currently being falsely imprisoned along with the 2,300,000 total US prison population nationwide.
Since our US Congress has never afforded poor prison inmates federal appeal legal counsel for their federal retrials,they have effectively closed the doors on these tens of thousands of innocent citizens ever being capable of possibly exonerating themselves to regain their freedom through being granted new retrials.

This same exact unjust situation was happening in our Southern States when poor and mostly uneducated Black Americans were being falsely imprisoned for endless decades without the needed educational skills to properly submit their own written federal trial appeals.

**INNOCENT AMERICANS ARE DENIED REAL HC RIGHTS WITH THEIR FEDERAL APPEALS !!
This devious and deceptive judicial process of making our poor and innocent prison inmates formulate and write their own federal appeal legal cases for possible retrials on their state criminal cases,is still in effect today even though everyone in our US judicial system knows that without proper legal representation, these tens of thousands of innocent prison inmates will be denied their rightful opportunities of ever being granted new trials from our federal appeal judges!!

Sadly, the true US *legal* Federal Appeal situation that occurs when any of our uneducated American prison inmates are forced to attempt to submit their own written Federal Appeals (from our prisons nationwide) without the assistance of proper legal counsel, is that they all are in reality being denied their legitimate rights for Habeas Corpus and will win any future Supreme Court Case concerning this injustice!

For our judicial system and our US Congressional Leaders Of The Free World to continue to pretend that this is a real and fair opportunity for our American Middle Class and Working Poor Citizens, only delays the very needed future change of Federal Financing of all these Federal appeals becoming a normal formula of Our American judicial system.

It was not so very long ago that Public Defenders became a Reality in this country.Prior that legal reality taking place, their were also some who thought giving anyone charged with a crime a free lawyer was a waste of taxpayers $$.

This FACADE and HORROR of our Federal Appeal proce$$ is not worthy of the Greatest Country In The World!

***GREAT SOCIETIES THAT DO NOT PROTECT EVEN THEIR INNOCENT, BECOME THE GUILTY!

A MUST READ ABOUT AMERICAN INJUSTICE:
1) YAHOO AND 2) GOOGLE
MANNY GONZALES THE KID THAT EVERYONE FORGOT IN THE CA PRISON SYSTEM.
** A JUDICIAL RIDE OF ONES LIFE !

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
(424-247-2013)

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By Folktruther, September 9, 2008 at 8:22 am Link to this comment

The mainstream conceptual language, Anarcissie, is a primary way the US, and indeed all power systems, delude the population and obfuscate political discourse.  For example, “America” refers both to the American power structure and the American population, the vast majority of people, as well as to the power system of institutions.

This conflation of power concepts and images by all power structures prevents the population from discrimnating our own interests from those of the power structure.  Supporting “America” in the mainstream media is interpreted to mean supporting the wars of the ruling and elements of the professional class who form the power structure, which it is Patroitic to do. People patriotism cannot be distinguished from power Patriotism, the interests of the people clearly distinguished to the population from the interests of power.

This obfuscation and deceit occurs at a much deeper level as well.  But it has not been confronted in liberal social science because it is not possible to tell the simple coherant truth about people and power, in words or math symbols, without subverting the Western worldview that has legitimated liberal Democracies the past few centuries.  Or by subverting American ideology, which is a fabric of bullshit from beginning to end.

Changing the conceptual language of relations among people, especially power relations, transfaorms our worldviews of reality.  Jusst as the great scientific revolutions in the natural sciences did, as outlined by Thomas Kuhn in his influence essay THE STRUCTURE OF SCIENTIFIC REVOLUTIONS.

We happen to be living at a time in history when it is both politically and technically feasible to transform our inherited worldviews of reality.  The implications of this transformation extend far beyond the US, but it can also help mobilize the American population against the American power structure oppressing us.  The Western historical era is fading and degenerating, and it is our function to try to prevent it from initiating a theromuclear war as it is flushed down the toilet of history.

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By Anarcissie, September 9, 2008 at 8:07 am Link to this comment

cann4ing: Kiptin, the word “progressive” is chosen because it denotes the direction our movement seeks to take the nation.  It is not a new word.  It was used by the Progressive Party in the late 19th Century, and was co-opted by T. Roosevelt….

The fact that the word could be so easily co-opted by a Bismarckian national imperialist blowhard should tell you something.  In fact it should tell you the same thing I already told you.

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By Brian Hope, September 9, 2008 at 6:13 am Link to this comment
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It was a disgusting show of police brutality and the officers responsible should be jailed if only they could be identified, but as they made that impossible the commanders of that particular brutal attack should be prosecuted. You Like the UK have an almost full police state in the making and the police should realise that if the take over of America by these Marxist criminals does not succeed then they will be held responsible for the actions, aka Nuremberg.

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By Anarcissie, September 8, 2008 at 10:10 pm Link to this comment

Cyrena—my solution to the problems you describe has been to use my vocabulary, which I’ve worked out over a period of time, and if people seem confused by it I explain what I mean.  This can often lead to an interesting discussion.  Sometimes I’ve changed my terminology when I thought people had good objections to my usage or better substitutes.

We live in an epoch of propaganda, so it’s something of a fight to make language mean anything.  But I think it can be done.

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By cann4ing, September 8, 2008 at 9:36 pm Link to this comment

Actually, Cyrena, I, for one, have adopted another poster’s phrase.  Instead of “right wing,” he referred to them as Reich wing.  Sort of fits Bush/Cheney or McCain/Palin don’t you think?

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By cyrena, September 8, 2008 at 9:21 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

Thanks for the post on the definitions. You probably have written it before, in which case I missed it myself. (can’t really speak for anyone else).

Anyway, I *do* get your point, and specifically here:

•  “You may think the Republicans are regressive, but I am sure most of them don’t think so and don’t say so.  The idea that one should be politically in favor of some unspecified thing called “progress” because progress is inevitably good is a piece of 19th century optimism which no one looking at the history of the 20th century rationally could agree to—large parts of developed, civilized Europe progressed to fascism, war and genocide of the most modern and advanced sort.  In the Germany of 1933, a little regression would have been a damned good thing.”

I’m sure you’re right on spot with the fact that Republicans certainly don’t think of themselves as regressive, because nobody does. Based on that logic, it would be fair enough to say that everybody is progressive.

It’s highly likely that I’m hung up on the really literal, which is why people like me have such a difficult time articulating things these days. Nothing means the same as it did prior to The Coup of the Radicals, including the related terms like “Conservative” and “Liberal”. I was first forced to confront the understandings of those terms in a history course about 4 years ago. It was actually a seminar on the History of Constitutional Law, and is spent some time comparing the Warren and Rehnquist Courts. When people consider the USSC since The Coup, their likely to say ‘conservative’ rather than liberal, (like the words we used in the 19th and 20th Centuries). But they AREN’T!! They are RADICAL – radically right? Maybe. But how does one really put a directional label on something like the Gangsters who’ve taken over our country?

That’s where I’m having the troubles. I don’t believe that right, left, center, conservative, liberal, have ANY of the same meanings or traditional perceptions that were once commonly held. These labels certainly did mean something for a very long time, but even then, only to those who’ve studied it to come up with an academically accepted universal comprehension. Anybody missing that, it’s gonna get it, and that’s lots of folks.

It would be easier if everyone had the same immediate understanding of what Leftist, (or anything else) actually means or what ‘characteristics’ make a Leftist, and if so, why isn’t “Rightist” used in the same way in the same discourse? In this dilemma, (and for me, it really is) I have to actually refer to something KDelphi said, about somebody not knowing an ‘XY or Z’ (my term) if it bit them in the ass.
In other words, if we say Marx or Marxist, I’m suggesting that not everybody is even gonna know who the hell we’re talking about. I’m *not* saying that as some sort of a ‘put down’ that people are undereducated or stupid, because that isn’t an indication of such, nor does anyone even need to CARE who Marx was, or what any of the rest of these political ideologies are. I’m just saying that to suggest that it is what it is, and is the reason why so much of what was understood at some point, isn’t really comprehended at the same level, through all dimensions of our society. (Marx being just an example here).

Anyway, I do get what you mean. It’s just that so much is twisted on the wrong axel these days, and I get stuck in the literary rather than the vernacular from time to time. Or is it vice-versa? These days, I’m confused. wink

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By cann4ing, September 8, 2008 at 9:02 pm Link to this comment

Kiptin, the word “progressive” is chosen because it denotes the direction our movement seeks to take the nation.  It is not a new word.  It was used by the Progressive Party in the late 19th Century, and was co-opted by T. Roosevelt.  It is a more appropriate descriptor than “left,” “leftist” or “liberal” and denotes the opposite of the “reactionary” politicians of the Reich wing of the Republican Party.

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By nalareen, September 8, 2008 at 8:58 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Minneapolis/St. Paul police are clearly the shame of the nation.

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By KDelphi, September 8, 2008 at 8:49 pm Link to this comment

Thomas—I’d rather die than be one of the last two people fighting over the last potato.

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By cann4ing, September 8, 2008 at 8:42 pm Link to this comment

Doc Un-Reality, you have obviously never watched Democracy Now?  You say she “shuts down” when asked hard questions about Israel?  Actually, Amy is usually the one asking the questions, and she has had guest appear on her show for interviews and debates of that have run the gamut from Israeli Zionists to the most vocal critics of Zionism and the illegal 40 year occupation, including, but in no way limited to Noam Chomsky and Norm Finkelstein.  She has interviewed members of the Israeli peace movement who are seldom heard anywhere else in the U.S., and interviewed Palestinians. 

You know, Doc, no one at TD would ever have known just how badly misinformed you are until you posted such tripe.

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By cann4ing, September 8, 2008 at 8:35 pm Link to this comment

noen—can you explain to me the difference between a Communist and a Democratic Socialist?  If you say there is no difference, then I have another question.  Our principle ally in the war in Iraq is the UK.  Since 1947 the UK has had a single payer, national health care system—socialized medicine, if you will.

Do you think the UK is a Communist country?

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By DocReality, September 8, 2008 at 8:21 pm Link to this comment

Goodman is a fake, she runs with the Soros funded gatekeepers. As soon as you ask the real hard questions such as 911, Israel et al. she shuts it down.
But aside of this the cops are trained like soldiers and obey orders. They do not know the law and are given their marching orders.They are trained to act collectively and not think as an individual human being.
The people of this country have let their rights be taken away, especially the weasely leftass liberals who are no different than the brownshirted Neocons.
Everytime you bring up relevant facts of incidences that have shifted the paradigm you are railed as a ‘conspiracy theorist’.
The actions of the Police were well known as to what they would do. The indications that America was nearly always a police state are wriiten in stone which will not be taught at a school near you.

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By KDelphi, September 8, 2008 at 8:19 pm Link to this comment

If fair economic policies are communist—color me red.

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By THOMAS W ADAMS, September 8, 2008 at 7:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Greetings all. Obviously, you all recognise the problem, and the root of it, but what are you doing to have the first amendment re-instated?
My advice? go and order a large supply of amunition and some back-up food supplies; you are going to need them.
Regards THOMASTHEAUSSIEBATTLER.

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By Kiptin, September 8, 2008 at 6:35 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Actually Noen, if you watch democracy now! the footage you’re talking about has been played on multiple days.  You can probably find it on youtube too.  I didn’t find it to be very enlightening though.  Then again neither was the footage of my friend getting tazered while protesting the FTA in florida.

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By Kiptin, September 8, 2008 at 6:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am a little skeptical about Amy’s arrest being entirely unwarranted as it does seem like she tried to push past them.  I don’t like the cops either but watching the tape I feel like maybe Amy isn’t being completely honest.  I watch Democracy now almost every day and have much respect for the entire team but I don’t feel good about this one.

Next: I’m trolling here but, calling yourself a progressive is just showing that the word left has successfully been intimidated into retreat…again.  Maybe uniting under particular causes rather than overarching political identities would be more effective anyway.

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By Anarcissie, September 8, 2008 at 5:16 pm Link to this comment

noen: ’... Amy Goodman is a leftist, she’s a Marxist and a Communist….’

Heh.  I think we’re being trolled now.

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By Tony Wicher, September 8, 2008 at 4:55 pm Link to this comment

By mrogi, September 8 at 2:52 pm #


KDelphi asks, HOW is Goodman a “communist”?

Amy Goodman believes that America’s current economic system exploits the working class by concentrating the nation’s wealth in the hands of less than 2% of the population. Amy is convinced that a more equitable distribution of wealth is vital to social justice.
—————————————————————————-
This does not make Amy a Communist, just a decent human being as opposed to a selfish pig.

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By cann4ing, September 8, 2008 at 4:23 pm Link to this comment

mrogi, a friendly piece of advice.  Go back to school.  Get an education then return when you are capable of intellectual discourse.

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By noen, September 8, 2008 at 4:22 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“HOW is Goodman a “communist”?”

1. Amy Goodman is a Marxist.
2. Marxism equals Communism.
Therefore
3. Amy Goodman is a Communist.

I am a Democrat. I believe in representative democracies. I also believe we need a more equitable distribution of wealth and I have no problem with the “Socialism” of single payer health care, public education, social security and other entitlements. I am opposed the free market ideas of neo-liberalism. Clearly there need to be some restraints i.e. regulations, imposed on corporations. I also think that Democracy Now is much needed to counter balance the corporate media but I am not naive. Democracy Now and other activists on the far left do not want the things I’ve listed above. They want the dictatorship of the proletariat. That is their vision of Utopia. The Right wants Fascism and that is their Utopia.

I want none of those things. I want to live in a free democracy.

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By cann4ing, September 8, 2008 at 4:21 pm Link to this comment

By mrogi, September 8 at 2:52 pm #

KDelphi asks, HOW is Goodman a “communist”?

Amy Goodman believes that America’s current economic system exploits the working class by concentrating the nation’s wealth in the hands of less than 2% of the population. Amy is convinced that a more equitable distribution of wealth is vital to social justice.
_____________________________________________

Newsflash: mrogi, Amy Goodman is right.  And anyone with even a modicum of an education understands that there can be no meaningful political democracy without some degree of economic democracy.

As Kevin Phillips observed in “Wealth & Democracy” quoting Samuel Huntington:  “Money becomes evil not when it is used to buy goods but when it is used to buy power…economic inequalities become evil when they are translated into political inequalities.”  Political inequality, in turn, leads to more dangerous economic inequalities.

So if what you say makes Amy a Communist, how are we to classify the first Republican President’s on the relationship between capitalists and the working class.

“Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital.  Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed.  Labor is superior to capital, and deserves much higher consideration.”
—Abraham Lincoln, 1861

Measured against the preamble to the constitution which states that a core purpose in forming our union was to “promote the general welfare” your heroes in the Republi-crook Party, who place the greed of the privileged few above the needs of all our people so that 18,000 Americans die each year for no other reason than that they cannot afford health insurance, are indeed “un-American.”

How’d ya like dem apples?

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By Folktruther, September 8, 2008 at 3:54 pm Link to this comment

Damn right, KDelphi.

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By mrogi, September 8, 2008 at 3:52 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi asks, HOW is Goodman a “communist”?

Amy Goodman believes that America’s current economic system exploits the working class by concentrating the nation’s wealth in the hands of less than 2% of the population. Amy is convinced that a more equitable distribution of wealth is vital to social justice. “To each according to his need; From each according to his ability.” Amy’s heartfelt beliefs are based on fundamental Marxist ideals.

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