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Economic Policy Could Scuttle Obama’s Good Start

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Posted on Jan 27, 2009
Obama
AP photo / Charles Dharapak

Barack Obama finishes a speech about the economy on Jan. 8 at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va.

By Robert Scheer

Only a week into the new administration, and yet there is this nagging thought that Barack Obama’s legacy already hangs in the balance. Sounds absurd, I know, given the brief time, but his early response to the financial meltdown is just that important. Despite a terrific start in so many directions, Obama is up against an economic crisis that, although not of his making, will, if handled improperly, spell his—and the nation’s—undoing.

Obama is in these early weeks making trillion-dollar decisions that will cast the die for the rest of his promising agenda. Unfortunately, while the new president has already proved to be a brilliant and super-competent agent of change in so many ways, in matters of economic policy he has relied excessively on the financial “experts” who helped get America into this mess.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and top White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers are retreads from the Clinton years who sided with congressional Republicans in unraveling the regulatory regime created by Franklin Roosevelt that had served the nation so well. Perhaps they have now come to their senses, given the financial horrors that their deregulatory mania unleashed, but it gives one pause to see these folks back on center stage performing with the same arrogant aplomb as they did when they had it all wrong.

We can only hope they are now prepared to make amends, although Geithner and Summers often seem to be pushing for more of the same: bankers first, women and children later. The good news is that the message coming from the mouth of the new president is that he intends to make a significant departure from the Bush bailout, by placing emphasis on preventing foreclosures, curtailing bank lobbying and holding the recipients of federal funds responsible for opening the tap of loans to the public. The structure of the stimulus package is also reassuring, with its emphasis on spending money in ways that will improve the quality of life for ordinary Americans and its ban on bonuses for corporate execs who utterly failed in their responsibilities. Imagine how much better off we would be if we had just taken the first $350 billion of TARP funds and used it to help teachers, cops, nurses and firemen buy homes in the communities they serve.

We certainly should give Obama the benefit of the doubt. In every other area his early performance has been stellar. Certainly so with respect to human rights and protection of civil liberties; in his first week in office, he reversed many of the atrocious Bush-era policies. With an urgency unmatched by any other modern president, Obama has sharply countered America’s tainted image by acting to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center, ban the CIA’s “enhanced” interrogation tactics and restore the power of the Freedom of Information Act to ensure public access to the information required for an informed democracy.

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In other important instances, Obama has been refreshingly true to the promises of his campaign by taking the first steps toward ending the U.S. occupation of Iraq, by moving toward energy conservation and by ending punishment of international health organizations that have been severely undermined by the dictates of anti-abortion zealots. His early actions on global warming and the Mideast show a clarity of commitment absent from the executive office over the past eight years.

In these areas, Obama has acted with an informed confidence not always evidenced in his initial moves on the economy. Why, in the management of the economy, do we hear so little from the Chicago community organizer concerned with the pain of the average person and instead perceive so much of the sensibility of the Harvard business and law school elite, preoccupied with the well-being of the denizens of Wall Street?

As Obama stated in his inauguration speech, “A nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous.” That is the problem with the Bush bailout, which Obama asked to be extended and which has resulted in little more than a rearranging of the chairs, not to mention the commodes, of the first-class passengers on a sinking ship. It has been the biggest corporate welfare program in history, enabling Wall Street hustlers to cut themselves lucrative deals while so many millions lose their jobs and homes. I’m betting that Obama will try to put a stop to all of this, but he needs to hear from ordinary folks who are hurting and outraged.

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”


Keep up with Robert Scheer’s latest columns, interviews, tour dates and more at www.truthdig.com/robert_scheer.



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By Folktruther, February 3, 2009 at 9:59 am Link to this comment

I strongly disagree with Sheronymous, who favors the repression of free speech under the guis of protecting it.  She is against permitting “seditous” expression, while I am not only in favor of it, I think it is exactly what is needed at the present time.

The definition of ‘sedition’ in my dictionary is
“the incitement of discontent or rebellion against a government.”  I am discontented with the American government and power system and feel most people should be discontented as well.

Shenonymous states explicitly that everyone has a right to say what they wish ‘UNLIESS IT IS SEDITIOUS.”  She repudiates what is most needed at the present time, under the guise of defending it.  The Constitution says nothing about prohibiting seditious speech, and implicity endorses protecting it.

this is how mainstream pseudo-progressives continuuously restrict freedom over historical time, and the power of the American people.  Under the guise of promoting it.  And that is how Obama is continuing Bushite policies, under the guise of Changing them.

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By Sam, February 3, 2009 at 8:45 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What good start, he has nominated three tax cheats, one unscrupulus AG whose dealings with the Clinton administration should be investigated, like his involvement in Waco and Ruby Ridge.  And then there is Clinton, whose old man just keeps on raking in those checks from all the foreign countries he sent our jobs to.

NOW they are trying to ram this joke “stimulus” package down on throats.  To quote them from the campaign, this is putting lipstick on a pig by calling this pork bill a stimulus package, the only thing stimulated is their donors to give more money.

I think we need another TEA PARTY in the reflecting pool in DC this time instead of Boston Harbor.

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By Shenonymous, February 3, 2009 at 5:22 am Link to this comment

Reporting someone on TD is a violation of free speech.  I don’t do it and I don’t think those with whom I argue do it.  Only the petty do it.  I threatened to do it for the maniac on another thread who has called me everything filthy his small mind can think of, worse than FT, but I have not.  He is really dangerous only to himself, it is his soul that will need cleansing.  Regardless of what anyone says of me or our country they have a right to say it unless it is seditious.  If I have a reply I give it.  That is the essence of free speech.  The First Amendment is first because it is the most important. It is a freedom that the Arab world will never evolve to have.  You have to ask yourself why?

For your benefit here is the First Amendment in case you have forgotten it or never even read it before…

Amendment I
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.

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By Inherit The Wind, February 3, 2009 at 5:21 am Link to this comment

Folktruther, February 2 at 11:35 pm #

Amon Drool—I think some of the censorship hrre is kind of random.  I notice that Inherit attacked me in the usual way and his post was deleted, for no reason I could tell. 
*****************************

Is that what happened to it?  Was yours deleted as well?

I’m philosophical about it—it’s a privately owned web-site.  They can do as they please with it.  Most like this say “This is for entertainment only”

If TD TRULY enforced their comment policy I suspect 2/3 of the posts in most threads would be deleted! smile

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By KDelphi, February 3, 2009 at 12:53 am Link to this comment

VanceMack—We reverse the Bush tax cuts, and, declare the “war n terror” a huge mistake.

People that hit “report” are the kind of dweebs that turn you into the boss or “teacher”. If you hate what som eone is saying so badly that you cant bring yourself to scroll past it… block them in you profile.

I “report” you, you “report” me, and, its censorhip. The so-called Left used to be against that…

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By Amon Drool, February 2, 2009 at 10:54 pm Link to this comment

folk…at first the deletions of the 2 posts from last nite bothered me, but in the larger scheme of things, it’s small potatoes.  whyzowl and i got in our say and that’s enuf.

funny thing:  the only time i hit the “report this” thingy was in someone’s response to one of your posts.  i wanted to make life at TD a little difficult for this person, so i reported her and sure enuf, her comment got taken down.  i don’t know if u even had the chance to see it.  now that i see you’re thick-skinned and have a sense of humor, i wish i wouldn’t have engaged in that indirect act of censorship…ha!

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By Folktruther, February 2, 2009 at 9:35 pm Link to this comment

Amon Drool—I think some of the censorship hrre is kind of random.  I notice that Inherit attacked me in the usual way and his post was deleted, for no reason I could tell.  As I’ve stated many times before, I don’t think any post should be censored unless perhaps is a vulgar personal attack on someone.  Paracelsus made a good distinctiion some time ago< but I forget it.

Sheronymous, I don’t stay up nights thinking of ways to attack you.  I don’t like to hurt vulnerable people.  But you can’t argue the ethnic cleansing of a whole threatened population without expecting a vigorous response.

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By Inherit The Wind, February 2, 2009 at 9:22 pm Link to this comment

Cann4ting:

You’ve been in war yet you don’t appreciate that it’s common to use innocent humans as shields?

Now, if one side is doing that, what would you suggest, the other side do, since you are now a self-proclaimed military expert?  Should they simply say “OK, you win, we’ll go home.”?  Should they say “OK, you can shoot us—we don’t want to hurt civilians.”

Or are they going to say “Hey! These are YOUR civilian people and you are firing at OUR civilian people and we’re going to stop you.  If you hide behind civilians, their deaths will be on YOUR heads, not ours!”

Yeah, if a general sets up his HQ in a hotel in a populated town, he’s setting the civilians up to be targets—either he doesn’t know it and he’s incompetent or he does know it and he’s morally reprehensible.

Interesting that you cited THAT example because that is PRECISELY what happened a few years ago—and the Palestinian assassins who went after the Israeli generals did it with TOTAL disregard for the civilians there….but is that OK since it was the angelic Palestinians attacking the Satanic Israelis?????

Excuse me, but the TUNNELS went from Gaza to Israel, right?  So just how do you explain why Israel shouldn’t destroy them?  Does Israel not have the right to guard HER borders? (just to make those that hate Israel being called “Her” puke)  Is that the new “International Law” according to “progressives”?  Every nation has the right to protect its borders. Except Israel.

Tell me, Mr. War Expert, why doesn’t Israel have that right? 

No, in 1968 I was 13 years old—I was a little young to serve, but old enough to know that was a brutally illegal war and we had no business there.

So…I’m waiting for the military assessment of how you defend against an attacker that uses his own people as a shield and counts on YOU to be more humane and caring about HIS people than he is….(sounds of snow melting..drip, drip, drip…...)

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By Sleeper, February 2, 2009 at 7:05 pm Link to this comment

It seems to me that within all Empires there has been a counter belief that has eventually brought them down only to morph into an alternate Empire. 

It is “The Battle of Evermore” and we all have our roles to play.

This is the way of the World from the Alpha to the Omega!!!

The Obama plan and the way the U.S. populus reacts toward it will effect the Globe.

Pick Up Your Sword and fight - Led Zeplin

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By Shenonymous, February 2, 2009 at 6:40 pm Link to this comment

It is always entertaining to read the chronic whiners.  They are bankrupt without the ability to argue well so they throw slurs, slam character, and denigrate the educated.  Of course they cannot argue, they do not have the skills.  So like children they throw rocks.  I see the clansmen are gathering again.  Can you remember where you put your white pointed hat?  Coldness is when innocents of any stripe are thrown into a grave.  Contemplating why they are there might prevent other innocents from murder but those who have the hangman’s noose in hand and in their mouth, are blind by their own hubris.  Furthermore, you have no clue what freedom of speech really means.  You are of that ignorant group who “thinks” they know.  You are inarticulate and do not offer any bonafide analyses.  You cannot since you do not know how to look at all sides.  You only look inside your own limited mind then desperately band together with other small minds.  I guess maybe you think together you can construct a bigger mind.  Maybe you actually can, but unfortunately the only thing that will be yielded is a bigger brain that has bigger brain sickness. 

Since the following questions seem to be too easy for the gangbangers to answer, don’t bet the farm that they can.  They ought to be able to answer since there are “easy” answers?  Right?  It is my standing bet they cannot.  Here is what you will do.  You will swerve and dodge and call me names because you are unable to answer intelligently.  Perfect.
Question:  Why has Hamas used the tunnels for armaments instead of bringing in food and medicine for the carnage of the Palestinians? 
Question:  Why does Hamas, who has boasted they do it, use the civilians as shields against the Zionistas?
Question:  What would you do if Hamas rockets landed next to your children’s head?  To what degree would you retaliate?
Question:  Restated to please one of the whiners.  I never have minded restating to fit the mental level of the pack:  If Israel protects itself and does that excessively, how much less would have been acceptable in response to Hamas rockets and mortars?  Does that suit you better?
Question:  Have the Palestinians ever reflected on what has been their part in their horrible history?  Oh boy, that one should bring down the house?
Question:  To what degree do you support the suppression of free speech? 
Question:  Do you think Islamists tolerate freedom of speech?
Question:  Isn’t Tom Friedman’s 5-state solution the best one voiced so far?

Folktruther you are such a fool.  You think I have a Ph.D. in Art History.  It has been useful to let you think so.  Sorry, I don’t.  You should have figured it out by now as I do have a Ph.D.  And I do teach on a campus.  And you haven’t the slightest idea what I am doing here.  You believe too much of what you read and spread the lies of an ignoramus.  Then the puffed up gullible ones believe you.  Then they feel they have to outdo you in denigrating me.  You must feel pretty good about that one.  Do you feel good about it?  The more you and they do it, the more data you provide.  I can only be happy about it.  You spend much too much of your waking hours, and maybe sleeping ones too depending on your dreams, thinking about how to nail my hands (ass) to some slabs of wood. It all has provided me with the most amazing amount of material, and entertainment at the same time.

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By Sleeper, February 2, 2009 at 6:38 pm Link to this comment

How many ways can you be wrong? Israel is not a terrorist organization.  The IDF is not a terrorist organization.  HOWEVER, the IDF may have committed War Crimes or Crimes Against Humanity, for which the relevant persons should face trial in the International Court.

I suppose this quote is suppose to be acceptable when followed by the policy that has altered the territory since:

“We’ll make a pastrami sandwich of them. We’ll insert a strip of Jewish settlement, right across the West Bank, so that in 25 years time, neither the United Nations, nor the United States, nobody, will be able to tear it apart.” -Ariel Sharon to Winston Churchill III in 1973

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By vancemack, February 2, 2009 at 5:15 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi…just what does an economy look like under your color sky? How do we pay for things…how do we pay for the trillion gajillion dollar bailouts, the increased government spending, the bailouts, buyouts, and giveaways?

I know those are mean questions but…seriously…

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By KDelphi, February 2, 2009 at 5:00 pm Link to this comment

Folk—How kind of you..

vancemack—contrary to neo-con opinion, not everyone harmed by the housing mess bought a huge or expensive house, took out huge loans, flipped properties, or, spent above subsistence level.

I agree that we should not have bailed out the banks without taking ownership.

More tax cuts, increased “war on terror”, and crappy “lower cost, higher quaity insurace” (as Daschle quoted today—-f*ck), are not going to help the economy nor lead to a more egalitarian system.

It will be a continuation of Medicare Part D. (Instead of HR 676—Medicare For All)

I use health care alot, as an example, because i know that issue well, through my past work, my family has been, it looks like, permanently expelled from the nmiddle class because of a lack of it, and, probably most importantant, I think, is that it indicates a certain level of respect (or lack therof) for the US citizens and patients. We all just becom “consumers”—consumsers of life and death “products”. “Insurance” (industry) makes doctors into fananciers.

It is immoral. If we continue to just be consumsers—-we will be consumed.

Life and death should not be “products”. War helps lead us into this kind of thinking—-that life should be on the market, open for sale to the highest bidder. It cheapens life—-if you can kill all these civilians abroad, isnt it just one more step to kill your own citizens?

Its called Thanatos.

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By Amon Drool, February 2, 2009 at 4:58 pm Link to this comment

hey, this is interesting.  both my post and whyzowl’s post of last night were deleted.  who found these posts offensive?  and why? has craig brown now surfaced at truthdig,too?

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By cann4ing, February 2, 2009 at 4:19 pm Link to this comment

By Inherit The Wind, February 2 at 1:20 pm #

If you attack a military target and the other side has placed it DELIBERATELY in a heavily populated zone hoping your humanity will out-weigh their LACK of humanity, that’s collateral damage.
_____________________________________________

Typical sophistry from an idiot who has no doubt never experienced combat, as I have—Vietnam 1968.

If a U.S. general stays in a room of a hotel otherwise populated by civilians, does that mean he deliberatedly placed himself in a heavily populated zone?  If some al Qaeda nut job blows up the hotel killing hundreds of civilians would his claim that he was only targeting the general, a military target, reduce his act from terrorism to collateral damage? If not, how is it any different when Israeli war planes target an apartment building filled with civilians simply because there is a Hamas leader residing in one of the apartments?

Also, both you and Shenonymous make the mistake of believing the canard that Israel invaded Gaza to retaliate for Hamas rockets.  In truth, per Haaretz articles, the Israeli assault had been in the planning stages for nearly a year—long before the previous cease fire.  That cease fire had all but ended the rocket attacks, except those by splinter groups opposed to the Israel/Hamas cease fire. 

Israel, bent on collective punishment because Gazans made the “wrong” democratic choice, violated the ceasefire by attacking one of the tunnels inside Gaza—ostensibly to prevent small arms smuggling, though it is also clear the tunnels were used to bring in vital supplies of food and medicine which had been cut off by the Israeli blockade.  (Like the Nazis before them, the Zionists see no problem with amassing Israel’s formidable arsenal, but how dare those Gazans acquire rockets and small arms!)

The Hamas leaders, not the sharpest tools in the shed, took the bait, launching their rockets and providing Israel with the excuse for its murderous assault.  Hamas’ claims of “victory” are a ludicrous as those offered by the IDF.  When civilians die on either side, humanity loses.

I, for one, find no justification in targeting civilians, be they Israeli civilians, Palestinian civilians, Iraqi civilians who were targeted in
Falluja by the U.S. military or Native Americans slaughtered by the U.S. military in its 19th Century genocidal conquest.

And no, TAO, it is you who has failed to offer a scintilla of evidence to support the assumption that “The Way” furnishes a viable option for the billions of two-leggeds who walk the planet.

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By vancemack, February 2, 2009 at 3:55 pm Link to this comment

Is there no topic that cant get swept into the Israel Palestine argument? Sheesh!

The economy is really not that hard to figure it out. Prices for homes and stocks skyrocketed from 2000 to 2006. everyone was making hand over fist and everyone wanted a big piece of it. Homes worth 200k are selling for 800k. People WAY overextended themselves to get into homes and now the balloon payments are catching.

People wanted and banks offered the way. now the housing market bubble is about to burst and people arent buying…as a result, the housing markets across the country are frozen.

Want a solution? Do nothing. Let the housing prices come back to a realistic level (read that as affordable) and people will start buying again. People start buying, builders go back to work. (I know…it SUCKS if you are one of those people that bought a 200k house for 800k-too bad…deal with it).

Tell the banks to deal with their own mess. Sit down with their customers and renegotiate a fair price and fixed rate. Or not…let them all go bankrupt.

Either way…the housing market WILL crash. We can only artificially prop up the market and lending institutions for so long. If it crashes now we rebuild. If it crashes in 3 years, we rebuild, but do it with an additional 5-6 trillion dollars in national debt that did NOTHING.

Anyone have an answer with where the last 350 billion went or who it went to and how much good did it do?

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By TAO Walker, February 2, 2009 at 3:11 pm Link to this comment

The underlying “topic” of this thread, as it was laid-down in Robert Scheer’s article, is the “economic” abyss into which the domesticated peoples of the world are presently plummeting.  This old Savage (who would sure appreciate not being lumped-in with all the “civilized individuals” who perpetrate and perpetuate the institutionalized system of vicious atrocity, a-k-a “WAR,” that has taken-over the discussion here, not to mention the virtual-world-o’-hurt tame Two-leggeds half-live in) nevertheless thanks those commenters caught-up in the diversion for illustrating so well the premise of his last observation.  To-wit:  Most people prefer arguing about almost anything, to calmly considering together the rigorous self-examination and difficult societal transformation “circumstances-beyond-our-control” are forcing upon them in-any-event.

Meanwhile, cann4ing (with possibly an assist from Sleeper) continues to propose the pie-in-the-sky of “green technology” and “democratic socialism” (or is it “social democracy”?) as an antidote to what ails all the CONfused Humans CONfined to this CONtraption he calls, with absolutely no comparative evidence at-all, “advanced civilization.”  He also CONtinues to be offended by this old Indian’s clear statements about our Human Nature and our given place as Human Beings in the Natural Order here.  His “individualistic” resentment of suggestions that his CONtrived IDentity is a poor substitue for the natural Personhood that is all our birthright, making him and his kind subject to the same industrial-strength commoditization he seems to have no trouble with when applied homo-centrically to any of our Relatives here, or even our Mother Earth Herself, is just another symptom of his dis-ease.

The Tiyoshpaye Way is offered as a remedy precisely because it is NOT ideological or institutional or electro-mechanical in-nature.  It is purely BIOLOGICAL, and specifically responsive to the actual “CONdition” that is erupting these days in so many terrible “side-effects,” all of them the subjects of every article and every comment on this and every other forum every place, all-the-time….as they should be.

Those floundering-around lost in the world, who even-so believe their selfs to be “equal” by some kind of divine decree or philosophical “law” to everybody else, assume self-righteously that nobody can be “certain” about anything they themselves are unsure-of.  This Old Man, therefore, could only be “religiously” asserting some mere article-of-faith in saying plainly that the domesticated peoples suffer from a CONdition that renders them severely diminished in their capacity to engage wisely and to mutually beneficial effect with the Living Arrangement their own artificial “bubble-world” is but a tiny and impoverished simulacrum-of.  That from someone who puts his faith in institutional and mechanical arrangements that are even now failing and falling-apart….to the growing fear and misery of his own self and those of his “....fellow (‘n’ gal?) prisoners.”

Anyhow, no one here in Indian Country is going to lift a finger to make cann4ing or anyone else give-up their broken toys and half-baked beliefs.  As old Grandma liked to say, “We all get to carry our own hide to the tanner.”

HokaHey!

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By Inherit The Wind, February 2, 2009 at 2:20 pm Link to this comment

Logic isn’t your strong suit, is it ITW?  You seem to think that the words “terrorist organization” are a substitute for guerrilla warfare and therefore inapplicable to nation states who carry out acts of terror, for certainly it was sheer terror that the IDF unleashed on helpless Gaza during Israel’s latest murderous assault.
******************************************

Do you even know the difference between terrorism and guerrilla warfare?  Simple.  If you attack military and police installations, and means of production, that’s guerrilla warfare.

If you attack a military target and the other side has placed it DELIBERATELY in a heavily populated zone hoping your humanity will out-weigh their LACK of humanity, that’s collateral damage.

If you attack innocent people riding a bus, or children in a pizza parlor and intend to kill or harm those people, that’s terrorism.

I’d be a helluva lot more sympathetic to Hamas if they aimed at and attacked legitimate targets, rather than deliberately trying to terrorize Israelis.

Of course, logic is something I excel at.  For example: I am aware that in any conflict one cannot say one side is wholly right and one side is wholly wrong.  One side isn’t purely “good” and the other purely “bad”.  Soldiers who fought each other, even in the worst and most bitter battles understand this.  Civil War vets, WWI, WWII vets, Korean and Viet Nam war vets ALL were able to meet and share experiences with their former enemies after the wars ended.

Therefore this absurd notion that Hamas and the Palestinians are angels and on God’s side and that Israel and any defender of her right to exist must be on Satan’s is idiotic.

Do I think pressure needs to be brought on Israel to cut the crap, stop expanding settlements and accept a proper 2-state solution?  Absolutely! Do I think anyone ordering or perpetrating war crimes on the Israeli side should be brought to justice? Absolutely!

But do I think pressure needs to be brought on Hamas, the P/A and Palestinians to cut the crap, stop targeting and bombing civilians and accept a 2-state solution? Absolutely! Do I think that acceptance of Israel’s right to exist has to be part of this agreement? Absolutely!  Should an absurd unconditional “right to return” be allowed to be abandoned as a bargaining chip? Absolutely!

Do I believe that a negotiated peace and 2-state solution can work? Absolutely!

Am I damn sick of Israel-haters here putting words in my mouth and attributing thoughts and motives to me that I don’t have? Absolutely!

Do I find Cann4ting’s logic flawed, and premises to be absurd?  Absolutely!

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By Folktruther, February 2, 2009 at 2:16 pm Link to this comment

Great quote, KDelphi.  Good blog too, Dandelion Salad.  Denmark would be proud of you.


Beer Doctor—Art history serves as a good revealer of Educated blather.  Since there is no objective historical standard, one can say alomost anything as long it is expressed in an Educated lexicon and sophisticated grammar structure. 

That is how Shenon can dismiss the only viable historical solutions to the Israeli problem with an airy wave of the hand.  The discipline lends itself to what Anarcissie calls ‘magical thinking’, including conjuring up a magical carpet to whisk the Palestinians off to Morroco.

But the main ideological problem to solving the Israeli and other problems is Cann4ing, despite his cogent and vigorous defense of the Palestinians.  Cann4ing is the best of the Obamanites, and expects, or at least hopes, that Obama will turn into another Roosevelt.  This delusive hope is a consequence of his miseducation as a lawyer and political scientist.

Cann4ing does not have a dialectical understanding of historical power relations, being himself part of the leftward edge of the mainstream political consensus.  Roosevelt was in office toward the begining of US imperialism, when the countty and the power structure was still confident and hopeful.

Obama reigns at the end of US imperialism after the US power system has been devastated by the Bushites.  He has been put in office by the Zionist imperialists and Madoff neoliberals to clean up afterward, but not to touch anything.  Roosevelt was from the ruling class, while Obama is a public relations con, selected to serve his masters.  All the difference.

Cann4ing is a lawyer, like most of our elected SENs and HORs.  A profession that extols Compromise and Stability.  A common self conception of lawyers is that of a hired gun, representing Satan if he pays them enough.  Cann4ing is different, he has a sense of justice and truth, but, unfortunately, he is Educated.  Not much you can do.

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By Ed Harges, February 2, 2009 at 2:00 pm Link to this comment

Regarding By Shenonymous, February 1 at 10:05 pm:

Such a mess, this post by Shenon — where to begin?

It writes:

“So I guess the Palestinians can just keep being killed 3 to 1 along with the Israelis.  That is one solution.  Status quo.  One state is not going to work, according the Zionist Israelis.  Nor will a two state. And they will keep warring over it.  So please you, yourself, provide a solution.  Now getting rid of Israel is not going to be a solution because that is as loony as the Arab Empire setting aside a piece of land…”

Shenon predicts the continued absolute retention of the upper hand by Israel, as if it were something obviously eternal and the will of God.

Well, gee, Shenon, until not long ago, no one could imagine the fall of Lehman Brothers, either. There is at least one little teeny tiny external factor that just may have something to do with the Israelis’ being able to continue killing Arabs at such a high rate with impunity, and to thwart any hope of either a one-state or two-state solution. That eensy weensy little thing that you accidentally overlooked is the abject devotion of the United States of America to the will of Israel when it comes to all matters Middle East.

The effectiveness of that unyielding US support in turn depends on the “unipolar world” in which the US — contrary to the will of everyone else on the planet — can continue to protect Israel from any consequences of its crimes, supply it with endless gazillions of dollars (borrowed from China) and endless mega-deaths of expensive weaponry, and fight wars of aggression in furtherance of Israel’s strategic goals.

Now, Shenon, do you imagine that the world reserve currency will always be the dollar? Did you hear Putin’s speech at Davos? And furthermore, do you imagine that Americans, faced with continued economic collapse, will forever and ever be willing to subordinate their own material interests in support of Israel’s interests? If so, were you one of those people who thought that just because Lehman Brothers had been around for over a hundred years, it would exist and thrive forever?

(And please do read the Neuman book. There’s still a chance for you to class up your act.)

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By cann4ing, February 2, 2009 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

Adding to my last post, ITW, as the son of a Jewish mother and British father, I am amused by your effort to tar my criticism of Zionism as “antisemitic.”  Now that you know I am part Jewish, you will have to choose between the classic abuse of “antisemitism” so powerfully exposed by Prof. Finkelstein in “Beyond Chutzpah” or resort to the fall-back position that anyone who is in whole or part Jewish who dares to criticize the racist content of Zionism is “a self-hating Jew.”

Your name-calling carries no intellectual weight whatsoever.  In my own case, I am an atheist and a humanist.  I do not consider myself the property of any religious or ethnic background.  I try to approach an understanding of conflict without religious or ideological preconceptions. 

Any honest and objective observer of the current conflict would come away with a basic understanding that it is the racist ideology of Zionism, the more than 41 year illegal and brutal occupation in violation of UN Resolutions beginning with 242, violence by both sides and the process of dehumanization which are at the core of what has been an endless source of conflict.

While a two-state solution will not eliminate the injustice brought on by the Zionist insistence on a Jewish state to the expense of the rights of Arab citizens who resided in what we now describe as Israel in 1948, it is clear that Arab states and Palestinians are prepared to make that major compromise but that the right-wing leaders of Israel refuse to permit even that limited measure of justice, thwarting the possibility of even a two-state solution by building and maintain settlements inside the West Bank, restricting travel and reducing the Palestinians to the ability of maintaining what in South Africa had been described as separate Bantustans.  By preventing the creation of a viable Palestinian state, Israel has prevented even a modest level of justice, and where there is no justice, there can be no peace.

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By cann4ing, February 2, 2009 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment

By Inherit The Wind, February 2 at 9:57 am #

How many ways can you be wrong? Israel is not a terrorist organization.  The IDF is not a terrorist organization.  HOWEVER, the IDF may have committed War Crimes or Crimes Against Humanity, for which the relevant persons should face trial in the International Court.
_______________________________

Logic isn’t your strong suit, is it ITW?  You seem to think that the words “terrorist organization” are a substitute for guerrilla warfare and therefore inapplicable to nation states who carry out acts of terror, for certainly it was sheer terror that the IDF unleashed on helpless Gaza during Israel’s latest murderous assault.

Consider your heroes in the IDF as described by Gideon Levy, an Israeli, in a 10/27/04 article published in Haaretz:

“More than 30 Palestinian children were killed in the first two weeks of Operation Days of Penitence in the Gaza Strip.  It’s no wonder that many people term such wholesale killing of children ‘terror.’  Whereas the overall count of all victims of th4e intifada the ratio is three Palestinians killed for every Israeli killed, when it comes to children the ratio is 5:1.  According to B’Tselem…even before the current operation in Gaza, 557 Palestinian minors…were killed, compared to 110 Israeli minors.

“Palestinian human rights groups speak of even higher numbers….

“With horrific statistics like this, the question of who is a terrorist should have long since become very burdensome for every Israeli.  Yet it is not on the public agenda.  Child killers are always the Palestinians, the soldiers always only defend us and themselves, and to hell with statistics.

“The plain fact, which must be stated clearly, is that the blood of hundreds of Palestinian children is on our hands.  No tortuous explanation by the IDF…about the dangers posed to soldiers by the children, and no dubious excuse by the public relations people in the Foreign Ministry about how the Palestinians are making use of children will change that fact.  An army that kills so many children is an army with no restraints, an army that has lost its moral code.”*

*reprinted by Prof. Norman Finkelstein in “Beyond Chutzpah.”

From the content of your posts, ITW, it appears that you too have lost your moral code.  The difference between then and now is that the disparity of numbers of Israelis and Palestinians killed was far greater in 2008/2009 than it had been in 2004.

On one point you and I agree.  What occurred likely entailed war crimes and crimes against humanity, but the people who should be brought before the bar of international justice are not the foot soldiers following orders in the IDF but the heads of the Israeli government who ordered the assault—likewise, Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld should all be tried for war crimes committed by the U.S. in the unprovoked invasion of Iraq.

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By M.B.S.S., February 2, 2009 at 12:10 pm Link to this comment

my dear brethren.  if youll indulge me, id like to explicitly air my grievence with shens central question.  i fear ive been dancing around it.

Shenonymous said:  “If israel protects itself and happens to do that too excessively, please state what would have been a more reasonable response?  I bet you cannot do that.”

now, this is the gauntlet that has been laid.  lets put it under the microscope, shall we?  what we find is shen believes that too excessively = reasonable, as far as israel is concerned in the I/P affair.  now lets stop for a second.  shouldnt reasonable and excess be mutually exclusive?  logic compels one to dismiss as reasonable any response that includes excess.  permitting the viability of reasonable excess is the shakey intellectual terrain that shenonymous treads.

so lets flesh this out.  as i said previously that shens euphemisms are simply cover for a brutal reality.  for shen israels excess = reasonable response.  and cant we all agree that phosphorus and the murder of little girls can be included under the heading of “israels excesses?”  so when we strip away the glitter and glam all we have is shen saying that phosphorus + murdering children = reasonable excess.  (thats a nasty equation isnt it folks?  uncle milty would be proud.)  she even said that israel is entitled to behave “too excessively.”  im loathe to decode that euphemism.  as whyzowl said in essense earlier, what good are brains without a heart?  even the undereducated, unwashed masses, which this serf can be included, see the truth in that.

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By Inherit The Wind, February 2, 2009 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

cann4ing, February 2 at 9:34 am #

By Inherit The Wind, February 2 at 4:19 am #

Hamas IS a terrorist org
__________________________

The use of cluster bombs on the civilian population of Lebanon.  The use of WP in its assault on the helpless civilian population of Gaza.  Bulldozing of homes, often with civilians still inside of them, as part of a policy designed to extend illegal settlements.  The targeting of UN compounds, schools, emergency vehicles.  A blockade of Gaza resulting in malnutrition and death for children under the age of 14.  Actions described by the UN as collective punishment and an encirclement which reduced the population of Gaza to a status strikingly similar to the plight of the Jewish population of Warsaw during the early stages of WW II.

One could easily make the case that the state of Israel is a terrorist organization.

That said, I would submit that the use of derogatory labels, like “terrorists organization,” ITW, are counterproductive to the cause of peace.  No doubt the Nazis would have dubbed the remaining Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto who courageously took up arms as “terrorists”—the label the Nazis pinned on the resistance movements throughout occupied Europe.

Violence, whether advanced by Hamas or by the IDF, is always counterproductive of peace—though it is important to recognize the vast discrepancy of fire power between the puny Hamas rockets and a nuclear-armed Israel which possesses the world’s fourth most powerful military force.

The root cause of this conflict lies in the racist concept of Zionism which has produced an imperial mindset that is strikingly similar to that which led Anglo-America to carry out its genocidal conquest of Native America during a 19th century sea-to-shining sea expansion under the racist doctrine of Manifest Destiny.  It lies in the extent to which the process of dehumanization has been in play on both sides of the conflict.
************************************************

How many ways can you be wrong? Israel is not a terrorist organization.  The IDF is not a terrorist organization.  HOWEVER, the IDF may have committed War Crimes or Crimes Against Humanity, for which the relevant persons should face trial in the International Court.

The ROOT cause of the conflict is not simply Jews seeking to find one nation in the world where they are BY DEFINITION safe from persecution solely for being Jews.
The ROOT causes are:
1) A total mis-management of Palestine by the British,
2) The Balfour Declaration
3) Arab states using the Palestinians as a political pawn.
4) The Grand Mufti, a Nazi fellow-traveler, being allowed to remain in power.
5) The United Nations refusing to stand behind its decision to create Israel
6) The 1967 attempt to erase Israel
7) The 1973 attempt to erase Israel
8) Likud coming into power in 1977 and letting or encouraging excesses by the IDF and settlers, and the continuing process of creating settlements.
9) The refusal of lots of so-called “progressives” to play fair, refusing to castigate the 22 Arab nations for the same actions, or worse, that it castigates Israel for.
10) The fundamental anti-Semitism that has been encouraged and nourished in the Arab world, and has been heartily embraced by the so-called “progressives”, legitimizing what neo-nazi movements around the world have been saying about Jews since Hitler fell.

See,  you, like all the classical anti-Semites, simply blame everything on Jews, (using the code-word “Zionism”) without ever acknowledging ONE THING done by Palestinians and their supporters and enablers as wrong.

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By thebeerdoctor, February 2, 2009 at 10:56 am Link to this comment

re: folktruther

Art history majors are a hilarious lot. Unable to actually be creative like the subjects they concern themselves with, they choose to disguise their shallow perceptions by speaking in a voice that assumes authority, over the subject at hand.
I once had an Art History major (who later became an institutional gallery director) say to me: “The only thing you have to remember about Jack Pollock is that he went from HERE to Here to Here to HERE…” pointing to the four corners of an imaginary canvas.
So you really can not get too upset with folks who see the universe from this particular prism; their formal education necessitates that they think in such a way.
Now, the only you have to remember about American foreign policy folktruther, it went from HERE to Here to Here to Here…

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By KDelphi, February 2, 2009 at 10:56 am Link to this comment

Intellectualizing the war:

http://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/2008/07/07/surviving-the-fourth-of-july-by-chris-hedges/

Again, Chris Hedges—he knows alot more about war than I do…

“I have little connection, however, with academics. Most professors of literature, who read the same books I read, who study the same authors, are to literature what forensic medicine is to the human body. These academics seem to spend more time sucking the life out of books than absorbing the profound truths the authors struggle to communicate. Perhaps it is because academics, sheltered in their gardens of privilege, often have hyper-developed intellects and the emotional maturity of 12-year-olds. Perhaps it is because they fear the awful revelations in front of them, truths that, deeply understood, would demand they fight back. It is easier to eviscerate the form, the style and the structure with textual analysis and ignore the passionate call for our common humanity.

“As long as reading is for us the instigator whose magic keys have opened the door to those dwelling-places deep within us that we would not have known how to enter, its role in our lives is salutary,” Proust wrote. “It becomes dangerous, on the other hand, when, instead of awakening us to the personal life of the mind, reading tends to take its place. …”

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By cann4ing, February 2, 2009 at 10:34 am Link to this comment

By Inherit The Wind, February 2 at 4:19 am #

Hamas IS a terrorist org
__________________________

The use of cluster bombs on the civilian population of Lebanon.  The use of WP in its assault on the helpless civilian population of Gaza.  Bulldozing of homes, often with civilians still inside of them, as part of a policy designed to extend illegal settlements.  The targeting of UN compounds, schools, emergency vehicles.  A blockade of Gaza resulting in malnutrition and death for children under the age of 14.  Actions described by the UN as collective punishment and an encirclement which reduced the population of Gaza to a status strikingly similar to the plight of the Jewish population of Warsaw during the early stages of WW II.

One could easily make the case that the state of Israel is a terrorist organization.

That said, I would submit that the use of derogatory labels, like “terrorists organization,” ITW, are counterproductive to the cause of peace.  No doubt the Nazis would have dubbed the remaining Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto who courageously took up arms as “terrorists”—the label the Nazis pinned on the resistance movements throughout occupied Europe.

Violence, whether advanced by Hamas or by the IDF, is always counterproductive of peace—though it is important to recognize the vast discrepancy of fire power between the puny Hamas rockets and a nuclear-armed Israel which possesses the world’s fourth most powerful military force.

The root cause of this conflict lies in the racist concept of Zionism which has produced an imperial mindset that is strikingly similar to that which led Anglo-America to carry out its genocidal conquest of Native America during a 19th century sea-to-shining sea expansion under the racist doctrine of Manifest Destiny.  It lies in the extent to which the process of dehumanization has been in play on both sides of the conflict.

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By Folktruther, February 2, 2009 at 10:04 am Link to this comment

Shenonymous serves a useful purpose in de-Educating and De-informing the Amaerican population, and getting them, as whyzowl put it, to call bullshit.
We have all been miseducated, misinformed and misentertained from childhood to instill the power delusions that have led to the political counterrevolution of the Bushites, which is now being continued by O’biden.  Shenoon embodies the very worst aspects of this miseducation.

She has been miseducated as an Art History major which in itself is not a bad thing, just getting the names, dates and sequences straight and making Educated comments about them, typically ones that are as meaningless as a string of hiccups.

But Art History is largely based on the Western tradition and therefore has presuppositions and preconceptions that legitimate The White Man.  That is why Shenon is so bigoted against Muslims and Arabs.  That and the traditional American racism on which the country was founded.  But hatred, fear and contempt for Muslims is now US foreign policy, so this bigotry is now Patriotic, and Shenosn is nothing if not a Patriot.

This Patriotic bigotry is combined with a complete ignorance of power relations from a world historical perspective.  This perspective can only be developed from the viewpoint of the population, and is incompatible with class and racist based mainstream American perspective.  So Shenon’s dingbat proposals and assertions combine the trraditional class Elism and racism with her invincible ignorance of world historical reality, this being incompatible with the indoctrination of her Education.

And as BeerDoctor asserted, the Educated embrace the savagery embodied in their Education.  Shenon has such contempt for the Palestinians that she would move them around like pieces on a chessboard.  But as Amon suggested, with a breezy Educated style and using really nice words.

It is the less Educated American population, who are led by the more sober Shenons, who we must de-Educate of the savagery and barbarism indoctrianted in them by the Shenons of America.  Because Zionists like Inherit are hopeless, simply parroting the Aipac line, while pretending to oppose it.

The vast majority of Americans must call bullshit to the mainstream truth.  We must restore the distrust of the American people in our religious, political and intellectual leaders.  Because, although their techniques are better, their values are those of Shenon. The Education of Savagery, that the Shenons of the world have taught us from childhhod to call Civilization.

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By Inherit The Wind, February 2, 2009 at 5:19 am Link to this comment

Amon Drool, February 2 at 1:44 am #

she’s breezy, she’s intellectual, she’s…she’s…SHENONYMOUS!!!  just watch this girl go!!  watch her turn the gentle and kind fadel into a foul-mouthed hater.  watch her, with easy turn of phrase, swat any criticism that comes her way.

the girl’s got ‘tude.  she calls ‘em as she sees ‘em.  she lets us know that hamas is a terrorist organization.  now, of course, this terrorist organization provided an alternative to the corrupt and ineffectual fatah.  and hamas came to power in a democratic election.  and they’re basically not fundamentalist…women dress the way they want…many aspects of western life have made inroads.  500 phd’s are hamas members…many educated in the west.  and they ageed to an egyptian-brokered cease-fire in june and were able to suppress rocket fire into israel to 3 a month.  but then some of the evil palestinians were found to be building tunnels on their own land in gaza.  in november, the idf crossed the border and killed 6.  hamas then refused to genuflect to israeli power and fought back with rockets.  israel retaliates…kills over 1300 and shenon asks what else could israel do?  and anyway, she tells us men are absurd beasts and war is a permanently chronic disease with them.  how does she know this?  why…she read it in “the history of war.”

one wonders how someone can become so blithe about human suffering.  but hey, she’s…she’s…SHENONYMOUS!!!
**********************************************

Well-picked handle for someone who rarely posts, then leaps to attack As Hominem.

Hamas IS a terrorist org—and, yes, they were “elected” and immediately used that as a mandate to start attacking Israel.  So they have PhDs…so what? Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda was Dr. Joseph Goebbels.  One of Bin Laden’s chief lieutenants is an MD.  Hell, President Mussolini’s SecState was Dr. Condaleeza Rice. That proves nothing.

But the stupidest comment is that Gazans are being attacked for building tunnels on their own territory.  Do you REALLY think everyone is so stupid as to buy into that?  These tunnels are MEANINGLESS except that they open OUTSIDE of Gaza into Israel and Egypt and are used to smuggle arms in and “Jihadist Martyrs” (aka suicide bombers) out.  So cut the crap, will you?

You can’t dis-assemble her arguments, so instead it’s a lot of snotty sarcasm and incompetent analysis and inferences.

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By M.B.S.S., February 2, 2009 at 12:39 am Link to this comment

btw, as far as reusing “too excessively.”  i would avoid it if i were you.  its a lil excessive.

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By M.B.S.S., February 2, 2009 at 12:18 am Link to this comment

nonsense.  i call bullshit.  my spelling errors and pedestrian editorial skills do pale somewhat compared to shenonymous’s more cultured and edited prose.  in fact the flurry of dismissals and rebuttals might look impressive to one that doesnt peer deeper.  but behind the vocubulary, behind the quips, behind that facade lies pure bullshit dressed up pretty.

as i said previously.  shenonymous says:  “If Israel protects itself and happens to do that too excessively, please state what would have been a more reasonable response?  I bet you are unable to do that.”

i dismiss this on its face.  what would have been a more reasonable response you ask?  well the answer is in your question.  obviously its a reasonable response that is not excessive.  use your imagination.  weve read the stories of what is actually happening.  trim the excess and we arrive at reasonable.

also with regard to this silly idea that a two state solution is untenable.  thats simply wrong, not only is it possible, but so is a one state formulation, but that would not be fair.  but its easy to sell skepticism and cynicism, especially in a political landscape.  your rhetorical flourishes are no match for a working conscience and two open eyes. but please, by all means, flap away. 

ago quod ages

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By thebeerdoctor, February 2, 2009 at 12:18 am Link to this comment

How strange that there are still people in this bankrupt culture who actually think that formal education is synonymous with wisdom. As Samuel Beckett once said: “If you didn’t know what it was, you wouldn’t know what it was.”

Hard to fathom the countless educated folks who embrace savagery as part of their abstract plans. People with masters degrees who spend countless hours of the week trying to figure out new ways to inflict suffering on other human beings. People who actually believe that weapons are their salvation. Perhaps a toast is in order: to the educated enablers, those institutional products of the permanent think tanks, who tell us peons why we should join the military. To every cold blooded bastard who asks the common citizen to put his life on the line for falsehoods purported to be in the national interest. To every last one of them: all we really owe them is the unvarnished truth: enough of your equivocating murderous lies.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 11:05 pm Link to this comment

Perhaps thebeerdoctor you need to read more carefully and maybe you would not be so refreshed.  No one on this forum was “justifying” present brutalities using historical references.  No one was saying that because mankind always had war therefore they “must” continue. That is reading shortsightedly.  Of course you may like to raise the issue to that level so you have the opportunity to show how cleverly you can knock it down, but it is quite disingenuous of you to do that.  It was a lovely diatribal post even if deceitful in its own way.  Essentially what was said is that war was an affliction of men and because it is a permanently chronic disease they cannot help themselves from continuing to war.  Let us see you make the effort to make them stop.

Yes, KDelphi, it is absurd, but men are absurd beasts.  Why don’t you read the History of War as well.  It might be enjoyable bedtime reading.  Then tell men to stop being such savages.

Sleeper everything you said is true.  Now what?

That was a good effort Folktruther, I am really surprised, and impressed.  I can only imagine how excruciating that was for you.  Except where you couldn’t control your self and brought up the word ‘loony.’  That does not belong in a civilized argument no matter how absurd a suggestion is.  It is disrespectful.  But okay, say you presented a good argument for why it would be a tremendous burden to move the Palestinians.  So I guess the Palestinians can just keep being killed 3 to 1 along with the Israelis.  That is one solution.  Status quo.  One state is not going to work, according the Zionist Israelis.  Nor will a two state. And they will keep warring over it.  So please you, yourself, provide a solution.  Now getting rid of Israel is not going to be a solution because that is as loony as the Arab Empire setting aside a piece of land (not dumping the Palestinians on an already viable country! like who suggested that?) and there is plenty of land in the Muslim world where a new small country, about the size of New Jersey, could be created.  Now I know the supporters of Hamas and Hamas do not want to consider this last possibility and will call it loony and use exactly the reasons you gave.  I mean the Arabs haven’t helped the Palestinians in 60 bloody years, why would they start now?  And who could Hamas use as human shields if the Palestinians are safely tucked away creating a real life somewhere.  The billions that Saudi Arabia is coughing up is not something the other Arab countries could not similarly do.  It would be easy unless you have an agenda to make it hard.

Any more discussion will have to wait until tomorrow.  I have to get some beauty regeneration sleep to take care of all the ugliness I’ve been called by the most morbidly vulgar of men.  Ho hum.

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By Folktruther, February 1, 2009 at 10:23 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous- I shall try to overcome by limintations and blinding hatred and consider your proposal to move the Palestinians to another Muslim land in a calm way.

There are 58 Muslim countries as I recall, and I can see you explaining to a collection of their representaives that you need to deposit 3 or 4 million foreigners in one of their countries.  You know that these are poor countries but you need enough arble land, jobs, businesses, etc to get these people settled.  I’m sure they would be only too happy to take these away from their own people and give them to the Palestinians.  Say in Morocco.

then you woould go to the Palestians, who the Israelis have been robbing of their land for over a half cnetury, and say to them that it wasn’t working out and they would have to leave their homes, jobs, farms, businesses, etc and give these to the Israelis.  And relocate in Morocco.

But most people, Shenonymous,  don’t want to leave their country, homes, etc and go somewhere else, and they have guns and military organization to prevent this from happening.  So the Palestinian population would have to be defeated militarily first, with enormous bloodshed.

This happened in the history of the US many times when Indians were moved from one place to another more miserable place, which no doubt serves, unconsciously as the model for your plan.

And the reason you favor such a plan-and I say this with all due respect-is because you are a political dingbat.  You simple don’t realize the enormity of what you are proposing.  And you are so racist that you don’t even realize that you are racist.

I say this more in sorrow than in anger, despite my blinding hatred.  Anyone who would calmly propose such a loony project can’t be taken seriously.  Even the Ziofascists don’t propose such nutty projects, which is why I think everyone should cut you some slack peresonally.

But that you would propose such a transfer of a population at this point in history bodes ill for the future of the Mideast and the US.

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By KDelphi, February 1, 2009 at 9:46 pm Link to this comment

Oh, well, we should all just really give up…

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By Sleeper, February 1, 2009 at 9:39 pm Link to this comment

“War is A Racket” nothing more or less.  The only Rewards of War go to the very few.  The ones who sell the arms, make the bombs or have refined the methods of delivery and either sell the guidance or talk the poor suckers into delivering them personally reap any benifits.  Every one involved pays the bills with very real physical or psycological wounds.

Survival instincts are taught by a higher authority.  The greatest lesson they teach is to not do someone elses dirty work while they live high on the hog.  They teach you to be responsible for your own actions and make others do the same.  The shadow government can utilize Directed Energy Weapons from Space. 

Tesla claimed he could harness natural forces and use them to destroy a building, a city block, or an entire city.  Don’t you think it might be slightly important to ensure that these people who may control this technology use it according to some guidelines?

When it come to War. A few end up Powerful and too many end up dead.

I’d rather listen to a different “Boss” cause Tramps, Like Us, Baby, We were Born to Run”.  I’d love to be “Working on a Dream”.  If that don’t work out I’ll revert to the “Boss Time” and remember the “Glory Days”.  Other then that, “I’ve Been Every Where”.

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By KDelphi, February 1, 2009 at 9:39 pm Link to this comment

I think that everyone who wants to continue the “war” on “terror” should go fight it. Cliche? Well, so is “there have always been wars”..

It is absurd to say that there is no other way to live.

Every “free” civilized country in the world spends MUCH less on military, doesn keep bases all over the world, and, seems to do much better than the uS at caring for its own citizens, with money left over to help other countries. (without religious strings attached)

Why would someone contend that Gaza or Darfur is an excuse to justify all wars? I am confused. I may not know exactly what to do about it (I assume that that is why I was not at the World Economic Forum this week and someone else was), but, that doesnt mean that we shoudl just continue supporting this murdurous crap.

We cannot continue it anyway—-the entire Middle Eastern, “war on terror” is a farce, and, it will bankrupt us. Maybe then we will stop.

But, DC will still not tax the rich to pay for it all.No wonder they feel that they can get away with murder. I do not know the exact answer—-but if people are extremely educated, they ought to be able to come up with one. If not, as I said, we are screwed.

All these people making huge salaries in DC, and no one can “come up with” an alterntive to what we are doing militarily now…bullshit.

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By thebeerdoctor, February 1, 2009 at 9:02 pm Link to this comment

It is quite refreshing to read the comments of those who use historical references to justify present brutalities. That which was to be demonstrated: that mankind has always had wars, so therefore they must continue; such is the nature of stubborn belief systems, embroidered with ethnic and religious justifications, whom the adherents of such bigotry find quite comfortable to espouse.
There was a time in the history of the world when people believed this planet was flat. There was also a time not long ago, when tomatoes were considered poison apples, and that the sun orbited the earth. Human history is full of fallacies.
But it is also quite curious how those who embrace the current global miseries, object so vehemently when anyone would so much as dare to propose a different approach. Those individuals, throughout the earth’s history, who advocated peace and non-violence for creation, have often been responded to by being murdered. How strange. The violent ones choose violence to prove that those who seek peace are wrong. Those who have concern for the suffering in creation are considered a threat by those who advocate murder and slaughter as righteous and proper. Spirituality has nothing to do with this. The violent ones are so afraid of death, they seek to murder others to prove that they are still living. How very very strange…

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By whyzowl1, February 1, 2009 at 8:04 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous,

How much does it really matter if one approaches the world and the story of history from an intensively intellectual perspective, or from a “less informed” one? All historians are biased and all histories are revisionism, for every history is but a selection of certain facts and narratives from an infinite possible set of facts and narratives that inevitably reflect a particular perspective: the perspective of the historian, the perpsective of his contemporary academic historians, the perspective of his society, culture or civilization’s bourgeoise (his audience), the perspective of the ruling elites (his masters), or some obfuscating abstraction—supposedly unbiased—such as “the muse of history” or whatnot. Learned or not, one meets and wrestles with the same perplexities and paradoxes and runs up against the same dead ends.

The question is, then what? Do you follow your heart or your head? Do you turn against your own best instincts in the name of some empty topic; i.e., something that is repeated simply because “people say it,” or perhaps in the name of some dubious authority or another, such as, the state, the church, the social order, or perhaps the biases and prejudices of one’s own class—or even real or imagined others?

Reading an exhaustive history will leave you exhausted, but does it leave you enlightened? NO! For you are the spark; you and only you can finally decide what is real and what is not, what is true and what is false, and if you give yourself over to some authority or other, you’ve lost yourself entirely, sold your soul over to “whatever he (or she) said.” “Truth,” as Gore Vidal put it, “is always personal.”

You are extremely ungracious to other posters here who are good-hearted and recognize instinctively—as well as intellectually, though, perhaps, not in a manner that meets your demanding standards—that justice is not on the side of the Israelis in their brutal suppression of the Palestinian people. Didn’t Israel bring Hamas to power by refusing again and again (and continuing to refuse) to make a just peace with the Palestinian Authority? Didn’t Israel support, fund and incite Hamas in its early days as an antidote to the secular leftist members of Fatah under Yassir Arafat? Didn’t Israel assassinate Yassir Arafat? Or did he, maybe, just eat some bad peanut butter crackers?

No, if you are, as you say, a pacifist, you have to join the large and growing resistance to war and the corporate occupiers of our own society who use it as their preferred instrument of statecraft. For the first time in history, millions of Americans, and tens of millions of Europeans, marched and agitated against a war (in Iraq) BEFORE IT WAS EVEN LAUNCHED. The world has irrevocably changed, and the question before you, before us all, is the one contained in the title of that good, old labor song, “Whose Side Are You On?”

Well?

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By truedigger3, February 1, 2009 at 8:04 pm Link to this comment

To shenonymous,

I don’t know what field you are a Dr. in. It is obvious that you are completely biased in favor of
Israel and in doing so you are displaying ignorance
that is second to none.
It is obvious you don’t know what the “bleep” you
are talking about. What is your source of information? Is it writings that are biased or believing the Israeli official line?  Did you try
to put yourself in the shoes of the Palestinians.
Do you know the REAL history of the creation of Israel and its expulsion of the Palestinians from
their houses and farms and cities??!
Are you aware that you and your ilks what are saying
about the Arabs is almost a duplications of what the
Nazi used to say about the jews. Are you aware that
Gaza ia a copy of the Warsaw Ghetto!!??
Please have some compassion and open mind and remove the zionist blinders from you eyes.

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By Ed Harges, February 1, 2009 at 7:30 pm Link to this comment

By Shenonymous, February 1 at 4:08 pm:

Shenon, dear, your “there’s enough blame to go around for all concerned” pose of neutrality utterly misses the ethical point. This is the kind of neutrality that excuses paralysis: “Go back to your comfy, tenured little life - everyone’s to blame, and therefore no one’s to blame, and so there’s nothing anyone need do to alter the US’s one-sided support of Israel”.

Your sloppy and anemic verbiage indicates that you could use some real food for thought. Try The Case Against Israel, by Michael Neumann, a Jewish professor of ethics at Trent University in Ontario. He demonstrates — for those who can’t imagine the plain moral truth unless it’s got an academic seal of approval stamped on it —  that despite all the particular crimes and calamities committed by whichever party whenever over the course of this conflict, at the fundamental ethical level it is Israel that is in the wrong and the Palestinians who are in the right.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 5:46 pm Link to this comment

M.B.S.S - Q.E.D.  Quod erat demonstrandum -Thank you for demonstrating my point.

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By M.B.S.S., February 1, 2009 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous you fail.  you can glibly throw words of death around with whimsy and joie de vive, and i must admit, on a certain level im impressed with how you ordered them.  its fun to play with words and the “educated elites” have been quite good, like yourself, and playing euphemistic, semantic games.  bloody specters of grandmothers and grandsons become “collateral damage.”  starving in the street becomes a “blockade.” genocide becomes “proportional retribution.” 

its fun to play with pretty words dr.  the problem with me, according you you, is that i am not able to detach emotionally from these euphemisms and the torturous reality that they represent. may the indoctrination never saturate me until i an unable to respond to these acts unemotionally,  for that will be the end of me.

spare me the lecture on chomsky.  some of us make it through university with our bullshit indicators intact.  and then again most of us dont.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 5:08 pm Link to this comment

whyzowl1 Glad you are a student of history even if it is via Gore Vidal, a worthy writer, but one who also had a bias.  Do all historians have a bias?  Not really.  One has to start doing the research however to be able to see that.  The Jews are not the only ones to think they are the chosen people.  Do look at the history of Muhammad and Islam.  Their policy of apostasy forces other to accept their religion or be murdered.  They think their religion is the only true religion.  Yes the Jews probably pissed off the Romans, but so did Jesus Christ who they actually murdered because they though he would cause sedition in the Roman empire.  Whatever you think is the corollary between Rome and the United States does not have much to do with the persecution Jews have had since time memorial.  Muhammad wiped out entire tribes of Jews because they would not kneel before his god. 

Far as war:  Nice sentiments, Just Say No…to war.  but that is not the reality.  Of course “We don’t have to live like animals.  Really.”  But the reality is we do.  Look at the United States and their preemptive war on Iraq.  Look at Darfur, look at Uganda.  Look at Gaza and the test Hamas gave to Israel.  As one against all war, yes a pacifist, that is what I am, and have stated that on several forums, I am not believed and actually hated by both sides of the full-of-hate coin.  Called all kinds of things.  Quite savage.  Even right here on this forum.  When I spoke on behalf of the Palestinians, I was reviled by the pro-Zionists.  When I spoke on behalf of the Jews, I was reviled by the pro-Islamists.  A neutral has nowhere to go except to their own heart be true.  I just give the finger to all of them and state what I think.  Even from my vantage point I do not believe there is the option of the philosopher’s dictum.  Man will not allow it.  Mans’ hatreds will not allow it.  Just take a survey of the number of wars going on in the world today.

Israel’s centralized bureaucratic military state is for what it perceives is its survival.  If Weil’s argument is the only one you have, you will need better ones and more then go to Israel and try to convince them.

What you are speaking of is too enormous an undertaking.  Not that it shouldn’t be sought nor actively pursued.  Just do not be disappointed when it doesn’t happen.  One of the main reasons is the fomenting of hatred by the religions in the world.  Including Judiasm, Islam, and Christianity.  And notice the violence of the Buddhists at the Olympic Games in China.  Provoked or not warfare alway takes two sides.

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By KDelphi, February 1, 2009 at 4:40 pm Link to this comment

“War if a Force That Gives Us Meaning” (Chris Hedges)

“War breaks down long-established prohibitions against violence, destruction, and murder. And with this often comes the crumbling of sexual, social, and political norms as the domination and brutality of the battlefield is carried into personal life. Rape, mutilation, abuse, and theft are the natural outcome of a world in which force rules, in which human beings are objects. The infection is pervasive. Society in wartime becomes atomized. It rewards personal survival skillls amd very often leaves those with decency and compassion trampled under the rush. The pride one feels in a life devoted to the nation or to an institution or a career or an ideal is often replaced by shame and guilt”

NOw, he was talking , most specifically about the Balkans. But, doesnt it apply more globally, the changes that come about with a “warrior society”? It doesnt just harm our “enemies” (the people of another nation, the underclasses are our “enemies”?? Really??)it is what it does to our own “civilization” that is most difficult to endure.


Is it not the end result t of any nation that invests so much in militarism?
People bring battlefields home with them. It is impossible not to. The US MUST come up with a more productive response to the world or we are screwed!

We still have walking sounded from our last foray in to a “civil” war.

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By whyzowl1, February 1, 2009 at 3:54 pm Link to this comment

As Gore Vidal noted, “History is the story of the migration of tribes.” Our own tribe (I assume your membership) broke out of Europe 500 years ago and brutally conquered most of the other civilizations on earth, and, the truth of it is, as Samuel Huntington observed, “The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact, non-Westerners never do.”

I admire the Jews for their stubborn determination to maintain their tribal identity as their god’s chosen people against all odds—even over the course of millenia in the Diaspora. But that may be a good part of the reason why they seem to have a special knack for pissing people off. Nobody likes people who think they’re better than everybody else, as I’m sure you well know.

They certainly pissed off the Romans and their kingdom—such as it was—was reduced to ash as a result. At least they’ve had the good sense—given another chance—to ally themselves with “the New Rome,” the United States of America. Who says we never learn anything from history?

Simone Weil recognized that “Every people that becomes a nation by submitting to a centralized, bureaucratic and military state suddenly becomes and remains a scourge for its neighbors and the world.” Israel is no exception to that merciless rule.

As for war, perhaps Rosa Luxemburg said it best, “This madness will not stop, and this bloody nightmare of hell will not cease, until the people…wake up out of their drunken sleep, clasp each others hands in brotherhood and drown the bestial chorus of war agitators and the hoarse cry of capitalist hyenas…” Yes, the capitalists didn’t invent war, but they have clearly embraced it as their preferred method for hoarding the earth’s precious resources unto themeselves, as well as settling imperialist territorial disputes, as have every ruling elite down the blood-soaked byways of time.

In our own day, we have the option of following the dictum of the philosopher-queen Nancy Reagan, let alone that of the Prince of Peace: “Just Say No…to war.” We don’t have to live like animals. Really.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 3:52 pm Link to this comment

Dear Folktruther, once again you cannot help yourself because of your limitations and blinding hatred.  I urge you to finish college.  Community Associate of Arts degree will at least be a start.  You are on the verge of complete babble just like your fellow gang bangers.  What can I say?  It shows up worse and worse with your every post.  You simply have no control over yourself.  Get a grip, man.  I speak the truth, not folksy truth, but real truth.  There is no solution to the Palestinian problem.  Unless they get rid of Hamas.  Hamas is what is killing them.  Israel only responds to Hamas attacks.  The Palestinians know that.  But they don’t dare say anything.  They have been under the thumb of the Arab empire for 60 years. Everybody knows that the Palestinians have been kept as underdogs by their own Arab neighbors.  I don’t really need to repeat it with every post I make.  I don’t mind except eventually what I say will sink in.  You know the value of repetition. 

Everyone knows what has gone on with the Palestinians for 60 years, and you act like an ostrich with its head up its ass.  Oh, ‘scuse me, head in the sand.  How was that for a washed mind?  I know I know, I need a washed out mouth.  You would like to keep me from speaking the truth, or you would come up with good solid arguments instead of the really crude name calling which is what you really are noted for on these forums.  You cannot argue just like none of your friends can.  cyrena is the only one who has the ability to do it. 

You do not quite understand the concept of freedom of speech which is why that and that alone makes me wonder if you aren’t an Islamist in a quasi-former-Jew masque.  I don’t have to tell anybody what you do.  You do that with every post you make that tears down anybody who does not subscribe to your view. 

So once more with passion:  There is no solution to the Palestinian problem in Gaza.  No one-state or two-state.  Why?  A one-state solution would put the Palestinians together with the Israeli who now have cultivated hatred, cultivated by the Islamist/Arab world.  Violence would be a foregone conclusion.  A two-state solution, would open Gaza to Hamas and other terrorists who would open hostilities and attacks against Israel.  Israel cannot chance it.
Solution:  The Arab world needs to find a good piece of land and donate it to the Palestinians who they have betrayed for over 60 years.

Now can you calmly counter this view?  It is not a racist view.  It is the offer of a reasonable solution.  If Gaza was so decimated by the Israeli bombing then rebuilding a Palestine would not be so hard in another location.  The land would be given to the Palestinians.  A peaceful location.  Far from the retaliating Israelis. 

I didn’t massacre the Palestinians, you did with your support of the terrorist Hamas.  Those poor suckers.  You appear so jealous of the educated but seem too lazy to get yourself educated that it hampers your logic in the worst way.  Do reread your post for coherence because much of it is missing.

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By Folktruther, February 1, 2009 at 3:15 pm Link to this comment

On another tread today, WHY DO SO FEW SPEAK FOR GAZA, Shenonymous stated something that made by blood run cold.  She stated there could not be a one or two state solution ot the Israli problem, but advocated the mass Transfer of the Palestinians.

  “The Palestinians have to be moved.  The Arab empire has plenty of land to donate and obviously money as well.”

This endorsement of ethnci cleansing, which not even Howard or Sepharad have publically argued, is being argued by an indedendant minded Educated dingbat who does not realize the racist and bloody implications of her remarks.  The Palestinians do not wish to leave their homes and country, so such a program can only be carried out by mass killing and terrorizing.

In itself, it doesn’t matter what Shenonymous says; she will say anything.  She is to political analysis what Trith is to religious analysis.  But that she can say such a thing heedlessly and matter of factly means that the American Zietgeist is approaching the point where mass slaughter is becomming accepted by the Amereican people.  It has already passed that point by a significant fraction of the Israeli people.

And if you can matter of factly advocate the massacre of Palestians, who next?  The American power system is appraoching the end of its life cycle.  And the end is often very bloody, as was Nazi Germany’s end.  But we now live in a world with nucelar weapons, combined with populations with the moral sensibility of Shenonymous.  If we believe absurdities, as Shenonymous does,  we will commit atrocities, And these atrocities occur in an enviorment of incrreasingly many nuclear powers.

It is becoming critical to de-Educate and de-Inform people so they view political and social reality from a people’s perspective rather than from the mainstream perspective of power.  And I agree with TAU and whyzowl that this will require a spiriutal awakening to counter our moral insensitivity.  But there is a real question as to whether this can happen before terrible things occur.

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By Sleeper, February 1, 2009 at 2:26 pm Link to this comment

There is an accension of mankind that has evolved.  The U.S.A. has put a little substance behind the belief that all men are created equal in many ways.  The lines of division can be indiscriminatly cast at will to feed chaos.  In the chaos you will find the perpertrators acting in an ordered concerted effort to gain power, money or everything they can get.  It amounts to smoke and mirrors.

We react to the illusion.  The fact is we are all FREE and we are all equal.  You can feed the LIES or divisions and by doing so feed a few elitest or you can let the power of the LIES wain.  They will lose their power.  Name calling is childish.  Just like people who always point fingers, blaming others.  I’m no Saint.  Christ taught to turn the other cheek.  I may put forth an effort, but I am not that holy.

I try to remain simple and identify with my enemies as to finding answers to why I do the things that I wish I did not have to do.  My mold was created by a devine creator that knows all that I am.  I can labor along side my neighbor and I have been robbed by those in authoritative positions of this empire that I have served.

I do not consider my answer to be to rob someone else in order to get mine.  I seek Justice and accountability, but I will settle with what God gives me.  I am human and can practice humility, but I can also kill to preserve life.  “For thine is the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory, Forever.  Amen

“Blessed Are The Peacemakers”
10/23/1983
“They Came In Peace”

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 1:42 pm Link to this comment

I appreciate your sense of humor whyzowl1, and unusual civility.  It might come as news, but to read ancient history we only come to find out, surprisingly, that the Jews descended from the Canaanites who were part of the nomadic semitic tribes that roamed the Arabian peninsula then when the huge famine occurred some 6-7 thousand years ago, found themselves in Egypt then after having to battle the Pharaoh migrated back to the Palestinian region (Palestine was a name given by the Romans to that region).  Then from persecution they were forced to spread to other parts of the world (the diaspora).  It is so easy to forget history.  Anyway, the Jews have just as much claim to that territory as any other semitic tribe. 

Unfortunately for your altruistic mind, war is as manmade and as ancient as the religious books that call for war, either from god to man, or man to man to preserve the selfish integrity of the god or the tribe needing an edict to work their warfare.  The Bible, the Qur’an, the Rig vedas, Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita is all about the justification for war.  These are just a short sampling. But anthropologists have discovered evidence of warfare long before the religious books.  You might pick up a History of War.

Yes, M.B.S.S. that is exactly why you will never be able to negotiate anything.  I am quite proud to be educated and among the academic “class.”  You should be proud of your ignorance and emotional reaction.  Don’t forget the Herr Chomsky was quite ejumacated, a real Harvard graduate and worked for MIT, guess that puts him in his own miserable class of the educated “elite.”  I see like your comrades you cannot answer my question. Try to in some calm and reasonable way.  Not the wanton way that has been so prevalent here on the forums.  I am noted for testing one’s patience on the forums.  I don’t follow the rules of genuflection.

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By M.B.S.S., February 1, 2009 at 1:24 pm Link to this comment

thank you but no thank you zionists, corporatists, missionaries, and new-world-order hawks but your propaganda is no good here.

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By whyzowl1, February 1, 2009 at 1:15 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous,

I reject your broad, sweeping, grotesquely oversimplified analysis. I, of course, prefer my own broad, sweeping, grotesquely oversimplified analysis.

The existence of peacable peoples around the world throughout history proves that warmaking is neither “inevitable” nor “part of human nature.” Men can be led to practice war or to peace. Why war? Again, qui bono?

Nice map; thanks for reinforcing my point that plopping the Jews down on stolen Arab land was/is a guarantee of endless conflict. United Nations Resolutions condemning Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian lands usually parse out in the range of 137+ to 2, the 2 being the US and Israel, sometimes joined by one or more Pacific island nations such as Tonga. Israel does not “defend itself,” it serves as a militarized cat’s paw for the Western Imperialist Powers to keep the Arabs in line, while at the same time attempting to drive the Palestinians out of their own land, which certain influential Israelis claim was “given” to them by their invisible sky god many millenia ago.

Sleeper,

I think Taw Walker’s point is that without a profound spiritual awakening among the ranks of the white, insatiable pig people, often expressed as the “restoration of the sacred,” there is never going to be any “possibility of a non-exploitative socio-economic arrangement in which democratic socialism and green technologies combine(d) the advantages of advanced civilization with a sustainable harmony with the environment.” And just what “civilization” are you referring to?

When asked by a reporter what he thought of Western civilization, Ghandi replied that he “thought it would be a good idea.” Some of us may be working on it, but we’re not nearly there yet.

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By M.B.S.S., February 1, 2009 at 1:02 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous says “If Israel protects itself and happens to do that too excessively, please state what would have been a more reasonable response?  I bet you are unable to do that.”

im paraphrasing Chomsky when i say that the most disturbing thing about the educated classes and elite is the way they discuss war, distruction, and oppression with such equanimity.

i will never reach the point where i can discribe wanton distruction, oppression, and genocide as a “reasonable response.”  maybe im just one degree away from that point.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 11:35 am Link to this comment

Oh so happy you showed up to bash me once again Folktruther.  I know I am your favorite educated victim.  I am always happy to see you and read your vituperations.  Exactly what power do you think I suck up to?  Hey, I need a bigger straw.  With my extra-cleanly washed mind, I can see a bit more cleanly than you do.  You don’t have a tenth of my erudition which accounts for your very small mind and vocabulary.  Don’t start using a better vocabulary or we will think you lie about the educated.  My kind of guy, whomever is reading the FTer is one who is for free speech without duress, is one who sees wrong on more than one side.  You all might consider that the FTer is really a terrorist shill on these forums.  And I will continue to look for his crushing remarks.

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By Folktruther, February 1, 2009 at 11:27 am Link to this comment

Whyzowl—Pay attention to Dr Shenonymous.  She is highly Educated.  That is why she idenitifes with war and mass slaughter. 

The learned have always sucked up to power because the powerful are the ones who sponosr and subsidize learning. The historical function of the learned is to rationalize, justify and humanize the irrational, unjust and inhuman.  Dr.S does so with her washing machine mind, spitting out the learned laundry that happens to be on top at the time.

Those of us who do not possess her immense erudition are of the opinion that the nature of war has changed in the past few decades, it not being fought primarily between armies but against a population.  This is also the opinion of the military historian Martin van Creveld in his recent book THE CULTURE OF WAR.

Van Creveld, a noted pig—he even looks like a hog- having been trained in Prussian traditions, now distributes his wares at the U of Jerusaleum, cheering on the joy of bloodshed, domination and suffering.  This is Dr S’s kind of guy, real Educated. 

It is truthers like this who legitimate the strategic historical trap that the US-Israel is in, the Educated crap that war of the past must inevitably be the war of the future.  I hope that you are too ignorant to believe this drivel.

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By Sleeper, February 1, 2009 at 10:18 am Link to this comment

cann4ing,

This statement critiques Tao’s assesment:

When TAO refers to “The Way” he really means “The Only Way.”  His dogmatic adherence to the primitive “free and wild” prevents his so much as recognizing, let alone admitting, the possibility of a non-exploitative socio-economic arrangement in which democratic socialism and green technologies combined the advantages of advanced civilization with a sustainable harmony with the environment.  TAO’s level of certainty is reminiscent of the certainty of a religious fanatic.

I see hope in the possibility of your proposed merger.  What is missing is ‘Ethic’s in those who rise to power within our government.  It is always in the pursuit of money for their War Chests.  The lobbiest control this so the Great Debate in Congress ends up being a three ring circus to entertain and distract “WE THE PEOPLE” as they try to keep the same practices in motion.

You are right on Healthcare it should be single payer.  Currently workers pay the most. 

I wonder how much of the stimulus loses the ability to demand Davis Bacon Prevailing Wages.  In Maine most school/University work is done at a State prevailing wage if that.  Contractors get jobs because they don’t pay benifits. 

State Benifits are often inadaquate and severly lag behind Federal Prevailing Rates.  The unscrupulus contractors that do not provide benifits get the jobs.  Independent Contractors pocket the cash.  Healthcare is not provided.

We need accountability in the mechanism that distributes the money.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 10:13 am Link to this comment

whyzowl1 you are obviously not an American or you seem to be a bit ignorant.  First of all war is not a modern idea.  Do study a little history of warfare.  It is the way mankind deals with mankind.  It is as old as the cave.  You can’t make that up either.  But don’t study too much as one usual commenter says education will do you in.  Get rid of weapons altogether all countries everywhere.  Let mano-a-mano, hand-to-hand combat be the rule of men.  Oh boy, are we naive.  Of course there will be endless war, as long as one man covets what another has.  The Poor Embattled Jew (TPEJs), of course will be defending themselves forever, by the way unless you did not know it, with the help of many other nations, mind you.  Do not fool yourself that they are not being helped.  Why do they not have any intention of making peace?  Because there is no peace with imperialist Islamic nations. 

Why not do some real historic reading about the rise of Islam and look at the map of the Islamic world?  And then study the history of the Jews. It is clear you do not know much about either.  Or is it too much even for you to press a couple of computer keys to look at the land mass of the Muslim world versus Israel.  Here is that map: http://btw.imb.org/news_map.asp
If Israel protects itself and happens to do that too excessively, please state what would have been a more reasonable response?  I bet you are unable to do that.

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By whyzowl1, February 1, 2009 at 9:50 am Link to this comment

The good Christian folks in the—ahem—civilized nations of the West, after engaging in the routine, barbaric slaughter of tens of millions of each other in the Second World War, noticed that even they had kinda crossed some indefinable moral line by applying the techniques of industrial production to the genocide of European Jewery—and felt pretty bad about it. So bad, they decided to compensate the Jewish survivors of their modern, efficient slave labor/death camps by making them a gift of—wait for it—SOMEBODY ELSE’S LAND!

You can’t make this stuff up, folks.

Does anybody here think the result of the barbarian West’s largesse could be anything but endless conflict? Qui bono?

The “poor, embattled” Jews will be “defending themselves” forever, for they are aquatting on stolen property. There is no “peace in the Middle East” because the Jews have absolutley no intention of making peace with the Palestinians, and the ravenous, insatiable pig people who own and rule the Unnited States—leader of the Western Imperial Powers—backs them up on this all the way. Why, you might ask? Think about it the next time you’re standing there gassing up your car, or van, or truck, or SUV, or Hummer. Hummm, I wonder why?

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By cann4ing, February 1, 2009 at 9:43 am Link to this comment

By Folktruther, January 31 at 12:56 pm #

Cann4ing- Obama vigorous LOBBIED for the bailout swindle. How long are you going to stick up for him.

By TAO Walker, January 31 at 1:49 pm #

Seems like people here would rather discuss almost anything except the still-growing mountain of evidence that their most cherished basic beliefs and received assumptions, about their own Human Nature (and the natural Living Arrangement that has engendered and nourished it all along), are in-fact glaringly at-odds with even their own best interests.

By Shift, January 31 at 9:40 pm #

Bailing out our banks and borrowing for a temporarily stimulus is economic insanity.  Face reality, allow banks and businesses to fail.
_______________________________________

What these three posts have in common is an infantile approach of false choice.  The options are not limited to bail-outs or busts of banks and business; supporting Obama or opposing him; accepting “The Way” of the Lakota or destroying the planet. 

While bailing out banks, Wall Street and failing businesses makes no sense, neither does sitting back waiting for them to fail as the nation sinks into a second Great Depression.  There is a third way, entailing nationalization and democratic Socialism.  Obama does not, as yet, advance this third way.  His policies are closer to FDRs, whose New Deal was designed not to destroy capitalism but to save it by preventing the avaricious beast from devouring itself.  But the fact that I strongly disagree with Obama on a number of issues, e.g. single-payer healthcare vs. the sham of “universal coverage” does not erase the large number of issues on which he is right.

When TAO refers to “The Way” he really means “The Only Way.”  His dogmatic adherence to the primitive “free and wild” prevents his so much as recognizing, let alone admitting, the possibility of a non-exploitative socio-economic arrangement in which democratic socialism and green technologies combined the advantages of advanced civilization with a sustainable harmony with the environment.  TAO’s level of certainty is reminiscent of the certainty of a religious fanatic.

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By Shenonymous, February 1, 2009 at 8:59 am Link to this comment

911truthdotorg, suggestion:  turn in all your dollars for whatever currency you think will be safe. If there are none, then have all your paper money converted into precious metals, or diamonds, and keep some out, then see how well you can live by trading gold, silver, platinum, jewels for goods you need, especially for groceries.  Then bury the rest in a suitcase in a hole in your back yard.  Don’t tell anyone what you have done.

Here is a site for a glossary of terms in case you don’t know the precious metals industry very well.
http://www.cmi-gold-silver.com/precious-metals-glossary-of-terms.html

By the way, if anyone checked out your link to MarketWatch. Forget it.  The link says the story is not found.  How about a better link?

Oooooops.  Yupperdo, yupperdoo doo, it is your favorite TDer-to-hate.  She has branched out.  You get a new chance to gang rape Her Highness here.

Theater of the Absurd?  Well get used to it and start laughing.

It is amazing why so many of the seemingly financial wizards that appear on these forums don’t get a government job correcting all the wrongs they see.  Oh yeah, it is easier to just sit back in the comfort of your easy chair and pontificate criticisms that don’t amount to anything really.  You are better than the Pope.  Like who of influence reads your comments?  Just cronies and other TDers who watch you with amusement.

Let’s hear it for free-speech (my mantra) and the right to your own money (your mantra), if nothing else rational!

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By Shift, January 31, 2009 at 10:40 pm Link to this comment

Bailing out our banks and borrowing for a temporarily stimulus is economic insanity.  Face reality, allow banks and businesses to fail, and do not borrow or print money to ease our fall.  We have the means to survive if we care about each other.  We have the knowledge to rebuild more sustainable lives and communities in concert with Mother Earth if we will it.  We have the stuff to deny our wants and favor our needs.  We have the gift of Spirit awaiting our awakening.  We have the capacity to withdraw from the destructive path.  That time is now for those who can hear and see.  The old will not stand and will be destroyed.  Renew yourself in Spirit and seek a new existence.

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By Ed Harges, January 31, 2009 at 4:13 pm Link to this comment

ITW, the fact is that the June ceasefire agreement required Israel to cease the blockade. Israel entered into that agreement and then didn’t end the blockade.

A blockade is a kind of attack. If someone was blockading Israel, would it not consider itself under attack?

Meanwhile, from June to September, as the continual Israeli military attack in the form of the blockade continued, violating the ceasefire, Hamas held its rocket fire, in conformity with the ceasefire. Finally, at a loss, Gazans had to act in self defense, using the only means they have: rocket fire.

If Israel planned continue the blockade regardless, then IT NEVER SHOULD HAVE AGREED TO THE CEASEFIRE.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 31, 2009 at 3:23 pm Link to this comment

Ed Harges, January 31 at 11:06 am #

ITW writes:

“You never ever ONCE recognize that this is not a case of angels versus devils.  Israel was provoked but you give no credence EVER to justification for Israel acting in its own defense.  In fact, I infer from ALL your posts that you don’t believe Israel has a right to respond to ANY attack against her.”

Two points about this stuff:

(1) First of all, notice the sentimental trick of nominally “American” pro-Israel-heads always referring to Israel as “she” and “her”.

They would never refer to what is supposed to be their own country - the US - using this fawningly chivalrous conceit. And they would never say of France or Germany that “she” did this or that. But dear sweet precious delicate lovely gentle Israel is always “she”. Yecch.
**************************************************

Actually, I do, frequently.  I see it as a “Ship of State” and ships are always called “she”.  If you don’t like it, tough shit.  America can handle it.  She’s a strong nation. (now go puke for all I care)

**************************************************

(2) Secondly, ITW screams about the irrelevant issue of whether Israel has the right to defend itself, even though Israel in this case WASN’T defending itself — because it was ISRAEL that violated the ceasefire from the get-go by maintaining the blockade which the ceasefire required Israel to end. So Israel was the AGGRESSOR here, and the Gazans were the ones defending themselves - after patiently abiding by the June ceasefire through September.
************************************************

Scream? Talk about a pejorative word!  That Israel wasn’t attack is an invalid bit of wishful thinking that the “We Hate Israel” crowd here took as it-must-be-true, because how could the wonderful and angelic Hamas have POSSIBLY started anything??????

Sorry, EH: Israel has been attacked for years and years and the blockade was in response to that.  Years ago SHE should have targeted those rocket sites and attacked them.  It’s just another fantasy that if ANYTHING violent happens, Israel must have started it. Even when SHE (just to make you puke) invaded Lebanon it was because two soldiers were kidnapped by Hezbollah. I expect you think Israel should have begged and pleaded and released every bomber in jail to get then back, and then, when they were killed anyway, said “Thank you, Sir. May I have another?”

So, yes, I want HER (there goes EH barging) to exist in safety and security, even though I know you hate HER existence (now it’s just retching for EH—and that hurts more).

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By TAO Walker, January 31, 2009 at 2:49 pm Link to this comment

Seems like people here would rather discuss almost anything except the still-growing mountain of evidence that their most cherished basic beliefs and received assumptions, about their own Human Nature (and the natural Living Arrangement that has engendered and nourished it all along), are in-fact glaringly at-odds with even their own best interests.  One proof of that is the media-made-and-marketed “consensus” (echoed here) that the key to “getting the economy moving forward again” is to get theamericanpeople back to their assigned role of providing temporary housing for the endless array of toxic industrial waste-products on their speedy way from foreign factory to county land-fill.

Was it really but a couple Moons ago that ordinaryamericans seemed ready to rise finally to something much more worthy and challenging than merely “going shopping”....for-a “CHANGE!”  Yet these days the papered professional experts are still faithfully preaching CONsumer-ism as the ONE WAY to “revive” a “global economy” that was already DOA decades ago.  Barack Obama, too, chants endlessly the marketeers’ mantra of “jobs” and “credit” and CONsumption, as if domesticated Humans have nothing better to do even now than to keep their self-deluding self-pity party going a little longer.

How is business-and-politics-as-usual (just more attractively staffed and a bit better “managed,” maybe?) going to address to mutual benefit “dire” CONditions needing “extraordinary” responses?  Wasn’t “consumption” once a name for a particularly debilitating and degenerative DISEASE?

All this infantile obsession with self-gratification is as unworthy of respect as it is certain to result soon in the very motherfucker of all worst-case-scenarios.  The whole Living Earth is telling our tame Sisters and Brothers they better grow-up.  Your old Native Guide here sure seconds-the-motion.

HokaHey!

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By KDelphi, January 31, 2009 at 2:26 pm Link to this comment

cann4ing—I am not an economist. (what I was dumbfounded about, was the topic they were on). But, we BOUGHT something and RECIEVED nothing, with the full support of Dems, especially Obama! If we are not going to nationalize, we should have let them fail! People with pensions received NOTHING! Obama is “outraged” about bonuses, but will he repossess their assets and, throw them in jail they way they would you or me for selling pot???

I agree with everything else you said. I simply meant that we paid for something and got nothing. Obama helped.

There is an article by a lady , who is a nurse, who was in “Sicko”—she has been working to bring about single payer.(Its on Common Dreams). She is so “surprised” at Families USA and others stance on insurance—why?? Obama and the Blue Dogs were very pointed about it! WHY dont you believe them??

Waxman, said that a “mix of private and public plans would
“provide competition”
—-he has said differtnly before, so I think he may be caving to Blue Dogs. I called his office, and, asked how it would not just become a Big Medicaid. They could not answer me.

Waxman, DeFazio, Kaptur, Kucnich, Conyers, CBC, ALL support in single payer, as do a majority in the Senate. “
Reform”, (with private industry) is a waste of money.

Obama needs to DO IT!

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/01/30-5

“Health Care Groups Paid Daschle $220,000”

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2009/01/31-2

YOu know the rest…you have to…

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By Sleeper, January 31, 2009 at 2:17 pm Link to this comment

When our reality looks like this:

http://blog.indecision2008.com/2009/01/30/pw-singer-cranks-the-daily-shows-geekometer-up-to-eleven/

and our past is mared like this (below) in The U.S.A. I think we really need to get to a place where the ones controlling the robots (above) at least have a conscience:

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/39951

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By Folktruther, January 31, 2009 at 1:56 pm Link to this comment

Cann4ing- Obama vigorous LOBBIED for the bailout swindle. How long are you going to stick up for him.

KDelphi is right, as you are, we should nationalize the banks.  How likely do you tink this is with Summers, Rubin and Geither making financial policy.

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By Sleeper, January 31, 2009 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment

cann4ing,

As to health care, unfortunately I did not have time to take part in the PDA conference call, but if Waxman is calling for “coverage” he is missing the mark by a country mile.  The “only” rational solution is single-payer.  There should be no place in our system for for-profit carriers and HMOs, unnecessary parasites that account for 31% of health care costs in the U.S. as compared to administrative costs of 1% to 2% in single-payer countries.

This is not a time for half-way measures by centrists.  It is a time for a fundamental restructuring of our economic system, from a system centered on the greed of the few to a system based on the needs of the many and a recognition that any economic system that is destructive of the environment is both irrational and unsustainable.

I’m 100% with you on that.  We still have a long way to go because The Insurance Lobby dishes out some Major $$$.  Our Real WAR is with The LOBBIEST and the Influence their money buys.  They collectively have put on the show we’ve been watching for decades even over a century.  Only “WE THE PEOPLE” can change it and only after we stop allowing them to distract us.

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By cann4ing, January 31, 2009 at 12:32 pm Link to this comment

By KDelphi, January 31 at 8:53 am #

cann4ing—I have been checking back here, rather dumbfunded—-I think we should nationalize the banks.We already bought them.

I also participated in the PDA “call-in” yesterday, as I heard Rep Waxman , basicalyl propose “pooling the poor” and “helping to buy everyone private health care”.
__________________________

We didn’t “buy” the banks.  The Bush regime outmaneuvered Obama and the other Dems in Congress, creating a $700 billion slush fund that was doled out to the bankers and Wall Street brokers with no strings attached—ergo $18 billion in bonuses.  What we “should” have done, at a minimum, was obtain an equity interest equal to the contribution of public funds.  Better still, since none of these banks have proven capable of remaining solvent absent public funding, they should have been and should still be nationalized.

As to health care, unfortunately I did not have time to take part in the PDA conference call, but if Waxman is calling for “coverage” he is missing the mark by a country mile.  The “only” rational solution is single-payer.  There should be no place in our system for for-profit carriers and HMOs, unnecessary parasites that account for 31% of health care costs in the U.S. as compared to administrative costs of 1% to 2% in single-payer countries.

This is not a time for half-way measures by centrists.  It is a time for a fundamental restructuring of our economic system, from a system centered on the greed of the few to a system based on the needs of the many and a recognition that any economic system that is destructive of the environment is both irrational and unsustainable.

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By Sleeper, January 31, 2009 at 12:26 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

I am not Jewish by upbringing.  I hesitate to identify myself with any organized Religion.  I went to a Baptist Sunday School when I was in 4th and 5th grade.

I believe Christ was basically killed when he crossed a line.  He challanged the Pharacies Power and threw the money changers out of the temple.

I believe that what Christ taught was a form of Judaism that taught we all individually commune with the Father.

Everyone has a right to defend themselves and other peoples right to live. 

I cannot excuse over 33% collateral Damage especially with the use of smart bombs.  I cannot excuse the use of White Phosphorus especially in urban area’s.

We probably sold them the White Phosphorus Weapons.  We used them in Iraq.  I believe I watched as Israelis used them in Beirut in 1983.  Cluster bombs cover large areas with this scorching hot metal burning everything it comes close to.  It is a hellish weapon not made for any good reason.  It don’t care about politics it burns everything.  Like the mound of body parts of children in one of the links I provided.

War Crimes have occured and need to be addressed.

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By Ed Harges, January 31, 2009 at 12:06 pm Link to this comment

ITW writes:

“You never ever ONCE recognize that this is not a case of angels versus devils.  Israel was provoked but you give no credence EVER to justification for Israel acting in its own defense.  In fact, I infer from ALL your posts that you don’t believe Israel has a right to respond to ANY attack against her.”

Two points about this stuff:

(1) First of all, notice the sentimental trick of nominally “American” pro-Israel-heads always referring to Israel as “she” and “her”.

They would never refer to what is supposed to be their own country - the US - using this fawningly chivalrous conceit. And they would never say of France or Germany that “she” did this or that. But dear sweet precious delicate lovely gentle Israel is always “she”. Yecch.

(2) Secondly, ITW screams about the irrelevant issue of whether Israel has the right to defend itself, even though Israel in this case WASN’T defending itself — because it was ISRAEL that violated the ceasefire from the get-go by maintaining the blockade which the ceasefire required Israel to end. So Israel was the AGGRESSOR here, and the Gazans were the ones defending themselves - after patiently abiding by the June ceasefire through September.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 31, 2009 at 11:43 am Link to this comment

Part 2 of 2
What he does is try to divert attention from the sluaghter or sympathy of the Gazans, “the poor Arabs’ as he refers to them sarcastically. He tries to divert attention to other sluaghters more consistent with Israel foreign policy.  this may not be entirely cyncial and conscious, but just emerges our his identification with The Homeland, as he calls it.
**************************************************

You never ever ONCE recognize that this is not a case of angels versus devils.  Israel was provoked but you give no credence EVER to justification for Israel acting in its own defense.  In fact, I infer from ALL your posts that you don’t believe Israel has a right to respond to ANY attack against her.  Tell me, if Syria sent planes to bomb Israel would you say she has no right to shoot them down? I’ll bet you would!

If there are excesses that exceed International Law, let the International Court try them.

But that is only justice if it applies to BOTH Israelis and Palestinians.

************************************************
And he never, never critizes the ethnic cleansing of Israel, or their mass murders.  Including the Beirut massacres when the Israeli army surrounded the refugee camps and brought in Falangists to murder every man, woman and child in them.  Sharon, who directed the sluaghter, was later elected Isrraeli premier.
*************************************************

Actually, the ONLY thing close to ethnic cleansing that Israel has engaged in that I’m aware of is displacing Palestinians with West Bank settlers—and I am ON RECORD as supporting the removal of those settlements…If you want to call repatriating the Israeli settlers back to Israel “ethnic cleansing” then, of that, and that alone I plead guilty.

As for the Fallangist slaughter back in the 80’s I have NEVER defended it. Indeed, I have said HERE AT TD that I thought Sharon deserved to be in jail—that was why.  I have had devout Jews spit at me for suggesting that Sharon was responsible for that atrocity and ought to pay for it.  And I’ve held THAT view longer than TD has existed.

**********************************************
The reason that it is important is because American and Jewish opinion is now splitting between Ziofascism and anti Ziofascism, and pseudo-liberals like Inherit are cuaght in between.  They will go one way or the other before the question is historically resolved.
***************************************************

I love how Marxists just make shit up that fits their world view regardless of reality.

Jimmy Carter has said he supports a 2-State solution and I agree with him completely. Is Jimmy a Ziofascist?  Go ahead, make that claim—I dare you! Go ahead and label Jimmy Carter a Zionist and a ziofascist for sharing my views!


***************************************************
The reason that TruthDig is so valuable to me is that it is possible to experiment with how peoples’ political values change, which is always a slow process, and what it is that changes them.
Sine I am also ignorant and deluded, my own opinions change, but, unfortunately, what changes mine does not seem to change many other people.  I am sure truther pressure plays an important role, so I thank you truthdigger3, for supporting what I previously posted.

**********************************************

Well we finally agree on something.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 31, 2009 at 11:40 am Link to this comment

Part 1 of 2
Folktruther, January 31 at 8:58 am #

The reason I do not have a strong aversion to Inherit, as I do to more cynical, depraved and barbarous truthers, is that I am convinced that Inherit emotionally BELIEVES some of what he says.  Even when what he says is rationally absurd.  For example he has stated that I hate all Jews even though I and my family are Jewish.  What I hate is barbarous oppression, especially by power systems who purport to represent me, but this emotion is alien to Inherit and not a central facet of his soul.
****************************************************

Jews who hate Judaism and hate themselves for being Jews are not at all uncommon.  FT shows all the symptoms.  He hits the stereotypes and doesn’t differ between policies of the Israeli government, the Likud, and all Jews who want Israel to survive.
****************************************************

And he actually believes, I think, that I make up lies about him becaue I criticize what he actually does rather than what he says he does.  It is quite true that, along with Aipac and the other Ziofascists, Inherit doesn’t explicily call for ethnic cleansing, he never explicitly apologizes for the Isareli slaughter of the Gazans.
*************************************************

I am not Israeli. I have nothing to apologize for. I am sympathetic, even empathetic to the suffering of the innocent people and want to see it end.  But I am also empathetic to the Israelis who have lived in fear for years from Hamas’ rockets.

I have never implicitly or explicitly called for ethnic cleansing, and FT’s assertion that I do is A LIE!  Had he even said “I believe ITW is in favor of ethnic cleansing” it would be the truth—he BELIEVES that about me although it is false.

*************************************************

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By KDelphi, January 31, 2009 at 11:07 am Link to this comment

http://www.theisraelproject.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=hsJPK0PIJpH&b=3587015&content;_id={D4EB7FBB-FEF4-42CC-AF0D-E7D75313D018}¬oc=1

c-span.org/Lanny Davis

I saw Davis on c-span Wash. Journal this AM—I cannot imagine negotiating with such a self-righteous, know it all . From the site, The Israel Project:.

“It is a documented fact that Israeli Defense Forces continually tried to prevent civilian casualties while still defending themselves from these terrorist attacks. They sent tens of thousands of text messages and cellular phone calls to Gazans — to warn civilians to evacuate areas used by Hamas for launching rockets; they called off attacks when they saw Hamas pushing women and children up front as shields; and they used targeted weapons and “smart” bombs to avoid civilian casualties as best as they could. Yet when the IDF’s weapons unintentionally caused civilian deaths, leaders of the United Nations and “human rights” groups call for war crimes investigations. And there are few, if any, counter voices challenging the United Nations at least to be even-handed and demand war crimes investigations of Hamas and Hezbollah. (including the Secretary General, who has not been hesitant to criticize Israel but strangely silent about Hamas).
Then there is the accusation that Israel committed war crimes by using “excessive” force and causing “disproportionate” civilian deaths compared to the number of Israelis who died due to Hamas rockets.

What would have been the reaction of most Americans (or most of the civilized world, for that matter) if someone had made the charge that the U.S. and its military forces were guilty of war crimes after Sept. 11, 2001, because, while bombing Al Qaeda and the Taliban government harboring them in Afghanistan, “excessive” numbers of civilians were tragically but inadvertently killed — because the number killed exceeded the 3,000 people who died on 9/11?”  (unquote Lanny Davis)

This is always the excuse, right? Well, worldwide opinion would say that BOTH 9/11 and out civlian bombing in Afghansitan were war crimes. So would I. As long as we continue our crimes, our cries of the war crimes of others will go unheard.

If we DOUBLE troop strength in Afghanistan (as Gates spoke of in a Senate hearing the other day), we will not be able to afford to do anything.

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By Folktruther, January 31, 2009 at 9:58 am Link to this comment

The reason I do not have a strong aversion to Inherit, as I do to more cynical, depraved and barbarous truthers, is that I am convinced that Inherit emotionally BELIEVES some of what he says.  Even when what he says is rationally absurd.  For example he has stated that I hate all Jews even though I and my family are Jewish.  What I hate is barbarous oppression, especially by power systems who purport to represent me, but this emotion is alien to Inherit and not a central facet of his soul.

And he actually believes, I think, that I make up lies about him becaue I criticize what he actually does rather than what he says he does.  It is quite true that, along with Aipac and the other Ziofascists, Inherit doesn’t explicily call for ethnic cleansing, he never explicitly apologizes for the Isareli slaughter of the Gazans.

What he does is try to divert attention from the sluaghter or sympathy of the Gazans, “the poor Arabs’ as he refers to them sarcastically. He tries to divert attention to other sluaghters more consistent with Israel foreign policy.  this may not be entirely cyncial and conscious, but just emerges our his identification with The Homeland, as he calls it. 

And he never, never critizes the ethnic cleansing of Israel, or their mass murders.  Including the Beirut massacres when the Israeli army surrounded the refugee camps and brought in Falangists to murder every man, woman and child in them.  Sharon, who directed the sluaghter, was later elected Isrraeli premier.

The reason that it is important is because American and Jewish opinion is now splitting between Ziofascism and anti Ziofascism, and pseudo-liberals like Inherit are cuaght in between.  They will go one way or the other before the question is historically resolved.

The reason that TruthDig is so valuable to me is that it is possible to experiment with how peoples’ political values change, which is always a slow process, and what it is that changes them. 
Sine I am also ignorant and deluded, my own opinions change, but, unfortunately, what changes mine does not seem to change many other people.  I am sure truther pressure plays an important role, so I thank you truthdigger3, for supporting what I previously posted.

BeerDoctor- that is a great quote by Toynbee: Civilizations die by sucicide, not murder.  Your comments are getting sharper and more penetrating.

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By KDelphi, January 31, 2009 at 9:53 am Link to this comment

cann4ing—I have been checking back here, rather dumbfunded—-I think we should nationalize the banks.We already bought them.

I also participated in the PDA “call-in” yesterday, as I heard Rep Waxman , basicalyl propose “pooling the poor” and “helping to buy everyone private health care”. It will not work, for the vast majority.

It will lead to a “public plan” that is , well, Medicaid (horrible), and, “gold-plated” plans, for others, as Grassly put it. The cost of BUYING individual plans for people would be astronomical.GOP will say, “look how expensive…”. I wont go on.

If our govt werent so “allergic” to regulation (the Am people as well!), going with the “bad bank” idea might, work, as it did in Sweden. (smaller, I know). Hell, the “private plans” might work (although I see no reason to include the insurance industry as we see it) if the govt would REGULATE—-but, then we wouldnt be FREE to die in the streets with our rights on.

The tax cuts for business, failed to lure any GOP, and, Blue Dogs in the Senate are arguing for more. We have DONE the “tax cuts”, people! How bad do you WANT that $500!? Will it change anything? Taking out birth control and smoking cessation is being penny wise and pound foolish. Smokimg cessation products are expensive and have become big industry. It is shameful.

If they are going to expand Medicaid , to include people who lose COBRA, the states will need alot more than $127 billion! And, Blue Dogs and GOP want to cut that. But, I guess us “progressives” are just being obstructionist.

P. Obama spoke of the middle class again, yesterday, I was heartened to see that he mentioned the poor—-those striivng for middle class status. But, I was more dismayed to notice his lack of mention of the nouveau poor—formerly middle class. There are plenty of us. I guess until “poor” stops being considered a status that must be your own damn fault in the uS, and, thus, an insult, politicians will rarely mention the poor. I still see it as a measure of a society,and so does most of the world.

I suppose we shall have to wait longer to join the civilized natins, if we get a chance on our way to Third World status.

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By cann4ing, January 31, 2009 at 9:27 am Link to this comment

How did the commentary pertaining to Obama’s economic policies stray into Israel/Palestine, two-state solutions, ethnic cleansing and a petulant name-calling contest between ITW and multiple opposing posters?

I recognize that the one-sided U.S. policies toward Israel’s illegal occupation have an impact on our economy, but that is but a fraction of the sums squandered for the maintenance of a U.S.-led, corporate-controlled global empire.  An immediate and complete reversal of U.S. policies on Israel/Palestine, while much needed, will not prevent a collapse of the U.S. financial system on par with that experienced at the end of the former USSR.

Mr. Scheer’s article should provide a forum for a thoughtful discussion of the fundamental changes required within the U.S. financial system, including whether we should nationalize banks, end Wall Street speculations, nationalize the means of production, end our participation in what more aptly would be described as the global “slave trade” (as opposed to “free trade”) system which is entirely dependent upon foreign sweat shop labor and the destruction of the middle class aspirations of workers everywhere, an end of the quest for U.S. imperial hegemony, which includes the insanity of the military-industrial complex, and the development of a democratically based economy along the lines suggested by David Korten, mentioned in my initial response to this article.

Surely Truthdiggers can rise beyond an exchange of petty insults to offer something actually relevant to the topic at hand.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 31, 2009 at 8:16 am Link to this comment

truedigger3, January 31 at 6:35 am #

To “inherit the wind”,

I support Folktuther opinion about you. You are the
liar and you are the one who should puke when he looks in the mirror.
On all your posts you were a big fan of Israel and contemptuos and non chalant about the plight and
the suffering of the Palestinian people.  I don’t remember ever you called for removing the settlers from the west bank.
Folktruther is an intelligent knowlegdeable conscentious man.

*********************************************
“I do not recall…..” is the famous excuse used by Nixon’s, Reagan’s and Bush’s crooks to cover up their lies.

Maybe Aricept will help your failing memory!

You can “support” all you want but I defy you show where I EVER advocated “ethnic cleansing”.  In fact, I am totally against it, and support and defend the rights of Israeli Arabs and other non-Jews to FULL citizenship rights in Israel.

VolkLiar is a liar and he knows it.  You may not, but that’s your ignorance.

He has long professed to “know” what I think and want is inevitably wrong and deliberately deceptive and misleading about it every time.

That’s because most of his fundamental premises are so off-base and easily disprovable that a formidable challenger to them, like myself, is to much a threat to his cherished and fallacious religious faith in neo-marxism.

In other words, since I prove him wrong so often he flat out makes up shit about me and posts it.

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By truedigger3, January 31, 2009 at 7:35 am Link to this comment

To “inherit the wind”,

I support Folktuther opinion about you. You are the
liar and you are the one who should puke when he looks in the mirror.
On all your posts you were a big fan of Israel and contemptuos and non chalant about the plight and
the suffering of the Palestinian people.  I don’t remember ever you called for removing the settlers from the west bank.
Folktruther is an intelligent knowlegdeable conscentious man.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 30, 2009 at 9:33 pm Link to this comment

Folktruther, January 30 at 2:50 pm #

Your wasting your time, Ed Harges.  Inherit supports Israel’s ethnic cleansing under the guise of a two state solution.
**************************************

You’ve got a really bad habit of lying about me, VolkLiar, and you KNOW IT! That’s quite a vicious slander and NOTHING I have ever posted can be remotely construed to imply I seek ethnic cleansing.  Because I don’t and I never have.

I have NEVER advocated Israel forcibly moving ANYONE other than their own settlers out of the West Bank.

I don’t know how you can look at yourself in the mirror without puking, knowingly spouting such lies totally to falsely discredit another poster.

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, January 30, 2009 at 7:59 pm Link to this comment

chringram’s comments are quite accurate on the situation. As Arnold J Toynbee once said: “civilizations die from suicide, not by murder”. This is certainly the case when witnessing a newly elected President, having to come to grips with a rather shallow call for change, confronted with the glaring fact that the venal bastards who have a death grip bite on the economic carcass, simply will not let go.
President Obama’s acquiesence to the military state is very apparent when you read the talk of doubling-down the troops in Afghanistan and the refusal to even consider, stopping arms shipments to the belligerent Middle East entity known as Israel. At the same time, his desire for so-called consensus, has him seeking the financial advice of those largely responsible for the chaos in effect.
You only have to watch a small portion of the summit in Davos, to see that the movers and shakers, so confident in their wealth, are next to worthless when it comes to offering up any viable solutions. The rotten, unjust system that this special happy little club have prospered from for so long, is coming to a close. Now their only true desire is to keep it operating, never mind the cost.
The same can be said of wars… which have nothing to do with security, accept making sure the munitions supplies are depleted, creating an artificial, “fierce urgency” to order up a restock. Is that not truly what it is all about? Which helps explain why countries with arsenals choose to pound defenseless impoverished nations into bits. But it does make you wonder why President Obama, with his highly touted intelligence, chooses to increase that misery in Afghanistan, all in the mythological name of “the war on terror”.

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By chringram, January 30, 2009 at 5:38 pm Link to this comment

Does anyone here remember the actual facts about The New Deal? Roosevelt created a mortgage trust that dealt directly with the foreclosures because he believed that the bank’s and Wall Street policy’s led to the crash. The public works the government financed put millions to work, and it was only after his Republican adversaries in Congress pressed him he gave in and cut the program substantially, which ultimately lengthened the Depression.  Obama has placed a big-time bank executive who didn’t think it was important to pay his taxes in charge of the Treasury.  Obama is telling Wall street to play fair instead of writing a law that details their obligations to the “common” taxpayers who are currently paying Wall Street’s multi-million$$ paychecks.  Obama’s level of change is placing a Raytheon pawn as head of the Defense Department. Obama is negotiating with Republicans about tax-cuts even though tax-cuts have proved to be ineffective.  He isn’t the strong leader we fought to elect. There can be no compromises at a time like this. Vision, Clarity Strength Innovation and Fearlessness is demanded.  Universal healthcare would help rescue businesses and relieve families who are losing their jobs. Massive investment in public works, education spending and huge endowments for solar, wind, geo-thermal, batteries and a battery of new technologies, which would create a new home industry are desperately needed.  I see none of this in Obama’s future.  The Republicans fought tooth and nail against Roosevelt and even tried a coup. Nothing has changed.  I am afraid that we are done for unless Obama gets some backbone and understands that some people would rather support their failed ideology than help their country.

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By Ed Harges, January 30, 2009 at 1:37 pm Link to this comment

re: By Inherit The Wind, January 30 at 12:19 pm:

Listen, ITW. Nobody posting here has ever had a good thing to say about Sharia law. Condemnation of Israel’s crimes and belligerent intentions toward Iran is in no way an endorsement of Islamic fundamentalism.

That little binary black-and-white single synapse that you have instead of a mind hears “hostile to sweet little Israel” and spits out the conclusion: “wants to live under Islamic law”. You are pathetically limited.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 30, 2009 at 1:19 pm Link to this comment

Your equation of the desire for a socialist form of government with a desire to live under Sharia law is as stupid as dirt.
******************************************

Since all the same people here calling for socialism seem to think that Hamas, Hezbollah and the Taliban are benevolent organizations and that we should everything possible to accommodate them, and since THOSE organizations don’t give an inch of tolerance or deviation from their fundamentalist, even bizarre interpretation of Sharia, the only way to appease them is live under Sharia.

Plus, the history of Marxist societies so far is one of restriction and government control—very similar.

The connection between these two by posters here at Truthdig is illogical, but they make it anyway.

So I’m merely reflecting upon that.  You don’t like it? Too bad! Re-evaluate the logic of your position.

Things grow in dirt.  Pretty much all the food you eat grows in it or eats things that grow in it.  In fact, fertile soil is made by allowing the work of waste products of all sorts of living things to do their job to return the nutrients to the ground.

It’s one of those circle-of-life things…....

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By bg1, January 30, 2009 at 12:40 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“arrogant aplomb”

Does Obama even hear, or want to hear our voices, or will he just listen to the Ivy League geniuses, the Rubenistas who got us into this hole?  Geithner when asked in the past couple days about nationalization replied, “we have a banking system based on private ownership”, in a way that sounds like they’re planning to bail out their buddies, and to hell with everyone else, because a bank bailout with taxpayer money, without government ownership and management is just a giveaway from us to shareholders and top managers (socialism for the rich anyone?).  These guys are either stupid or just don’t care about anybody but themselves.

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By Leefeller, January 30, 2009 at 10:24 am Link to this comment

As a clarification it should be noted that the word “dirt” has a direct reflection meaning what monkeys throw at the zoo. Our local zoo, has big signs “warning monkeys throw dirt”, when I was a youngster, I always wondered where they got the dirt, their cages at the time were bars and concrete.

My reason for bringing this up, is as a farmer, soil is not dirt.  So when someone asks is my dirt any good for farming, you know what I say. There are many words which can be substituted for dirt, but fewer for soil.

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By Ed Harges, January 30, 2009 at 10:09 am Link to this comment

Inherit the Wind writes:

“As to be expected, NOTHING Obama does will be acceptable to the bulk of posters here.  Unless he declares a socialist state, nationalizing all businesses and instituting a planned economy, and runs it solely according to Sharia as approved by the Taliban and/or the Islamic Republic of Iran, these folks won’t be happy.” 

Inherit the Wind:

Your equation of the desire for a socialist form of government with a desire to live under Sharia law is as stupid as dirt.

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By donna, January 30, 2009 at 9:56 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

M.B.S.S.

“feminist outrage”? Another slur by the way, as is telling a woman to calm down. How do you know most people understood? Did you talk to them before making a generalization? Please enlighten with your interpretation of what the writer meant.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 30, 2009 at 9:15 am Link to this comment

As to be expected, NOTHING Obama does will be acceptable to the bulk of posters here.  Unless he declares a socialist state, nationalizing all businesses and instituting a planned economy, and runs it solely according to Sharia as approved by the Taliban and/or the Islamic Republic of Iran, these folks won’t be happy.

Well, it’s not going to happen your way. He’s moving as fast as possible to make changes.

The tax cuts in the stim-pack?  That was to get GOP votes. Since they got what they asked for and still voted “No!” expect the joint version that the House and Senate put together (regardless of what the Senate approves) to remove ALL that GOP stuff, as it should.

And now the Dems can say “When we put in massive tax cuts to relieve the middle and working class, Republicans voted “NO” to tax cuts!”

When you realize that the GOP just voted unanimously against tax cuts, it means they are pushing themselves farther and farther to the fringe.  This may have been the smartest legislative feint the Dems have made since Pelosi became Speaker.

Hulk, you had me in stitches with our only American product being impatience!  So true!

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By Jon, January 30, 2009 at 5:51 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama is all for the banks and Wall Street, and thinks of the American worker as inept and expendable, which is the capitalist model: the workers are garbage.

Thus, we see the Obama White House handing over trillions more to the banks and investment houses for bonuses and jets and vacation meetings, while he lets American workers commit suicide over their personal plight of layoffs, foreclosures, and bankruptcies. 

All that matters to Obama is the DOW and whether his friends get their million dollar bonuses.  He is a corporatist and a globalist.  Pandering to the American worker got him elected.

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By M.B.S.S., January 30, 2009 at 12:42 am Link to this comment

btw, donna chill out with the feminist outrage.  i think most everyone else understood the intent of “bankers first, women and children later,” and im pretty certain that it wasnt to demean anyone outside of the pinstripe diablos cabal.

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By M.B.S.S., January 30, 2009 at 12:37 am Link to this comment

obama would make an incrementalist happy.  thats not good enough.  the entire rotten edifice needs to be leveled and reconstructed on a foundation of justice, civil liberties, equality, and love.

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By Louise, January 29, 2009 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment

cyrena,

“For the likes of this ilk, (you know who they are) it’s just a new ‘beginning’ in a DIFFERENT place, every time they open their mouths, and all the shit just contradicts or ignores all of the OTHER shit that has come before, from these same orifices. (they can’t even differentiate between their OWN piles of shit, so they can’t possibly sort anything else out.)

Just try to stay upwind of it. smile

~~~

Thanks for the laugh out loud laugh! smile

But I’m not as kind as you. I think they are life-long repubs who have been wandering about lost in the wilderness of Bush for the past eight years. Their confusion has led them to define the problem, sort of, but not the cause.

Their recognition coupled with misplaced loyalty leaves them thrashing about screaming at the “other” whoever the other happens to be at any given point in time.

They are the party of “People Outraged at Other People” (POOP)

Kinda sad actually. Maybe that’s because they refused to move for all those years. Just stood in place and got peed on!

I guess I’d be mad too if I never knew I could move!

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By Sleeper, January 29, 2009 at 8:47 pm Link to this comment

Here is a documentary about the Corporation from its roots to what it has become today:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=192012118972057552&ei=0FmCScvfJqq6qAOy8ayQDg&q=corporation&hl=en

We cannot alow them to run our government.

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By Sleeper, January 29, 2009 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment

Obama has done well.  Our problem have come from entities that should have no influence on the decisions in Washington.  The following is the hidden corporate history of America:

http://www.reclaimdemocracy.org/corporate_accountability/history_corporations_us.html

Corporations should not have influence.  Other nations should not have influence.  The following is a discussion on “War is a Racket”:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=364x3115542#3120171

The beginning was a long time ago.  I do believe we should reveiw the beginning of this lie.  The beginning is “Corporate Personhood”.  It was a LIE then it is a LIE now.  The straw people have bought and sold everything you would like to hold sacred.  There is a feeding frienzie going on these artificial entities are robbing our tax dollars to fight their Wars and we are still letting them feed us this Lie.

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By 911truthdotorg, January 29, 2009 at 8:18 pm Link to this comment

Hope this link works.

How realistic is a North American currency?
Commentary: Uniting U.S., Canada, Mexico money could result from crisis

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/Do-we-need-a-North/story.aspx?guid={D10536AF-F929-4AF9-AD10-250B4057A907}

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By 911truthdotorg, January 29, 2009 at 8:15 pm Link to this comment

The Amero and the North American Union is going to be the result of this disaster. And this was all be design. The dollar will be in the Smithsonian.

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/Do-we-need-a-North/story.aspx?guid={D10536AF-F929-4AF9-AD10-250B4057A907}

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By cyrena, January 29, 2009 at 6:40 pm Link to this comment

Despite a terrific start in so many directions, Obama is up against an economic crisis that, although not of his making, will, if handled improperly, spell his—and the nation’s—undoing.”

Well, in terms of the economic crisis that wasn’t of Obama’s making, the nation is ALREADY ‘undone’. This ‘code blue’ was sounded long ago, and nobody showed up with the crash cart and the paddles until now.

So his ‘handling’ of it will require bringing us back from the dead and/or preventing more death.  My guess is that he’s focusing on keeping those of us who haven’t died yet -  alive. At least that’s what I’m hoping.

Thanks for mentioning this Mr. Scheer:

•  “With an urgency unmatched by any other modern president, Obama has sharply countered America’s tainted image by acting to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center, ban the CIA’s “enhanced” interrogation tactics and restore the power of the Freedom of Information Act to ensure public access to the information required for an informed democracy.”

Specifically the part about restoring the power of the Freedom of Information Act, because that was one of the FIRST things he did by day 2 or 3. That came immediately to mind when I was listening to Rachel Maddow yesterday, as she made a big ‘to do’ about the ACLU’s filing of a request (yesterday) for tons of information that can hopefully be used to investigate the former Thug regime of Dick Bush.  This is a very good thing that the ACLU did, but Rachel seemed to consider it some sort of ‘hostile challenge’ to the new administration. It made me wonder if she had somehow MISSED the fact that President Obama very specifically went through the motions to make sure that the power of the Freedom of Information Act would accomplish exactly this.

In other words, that’s why he DID it!! All of this information has been held in secret for 8 years, and Cheney long ago RE-classified stuff that had been declassified under the appropriate statues and time limits. That President Obama made a clear commitment to undoing this (of many) atrocities, it was the same as saying (at least in my interpretation) “OK folks, you’ve been waiting to get at this information that should have been available to you all along. So, get your requests in now. If we’ve got it, we’ll send it out, and in a format that is NOT just pages and pages of redaction.

I’m even thinking of filing a request for information myself, just to see what it would look like if the whole thing isn’t blacked out. Does anybody have any suggestions for what information I should request? Think of something worthwhile, because it’s a big fat bureaucratic nightmare to file these things. Might as well make it worth it.

Louise, you’re right of course. The repugs DO want the fire to burn!!! But, it’s not just them. It’s the eternal sour-grapers that Leefeller mentions, including those right here on this site, who don’t even claim to be repugs. The ones who equally hate the dems and the repugs. (or so they say – uh, sometimes – it’s hard to follow from one day to the next, the only ‘constant’ being criticism for Obama).

Now in a practical reality, these are the very folks who would benefit from the Alice in Wonderland analogy, if only they COULD just ‘begin at the beginning, and go to the end.’ Not a chance though, and it’s obviously NOT because they’ve woken up sometime during the process. But then they’ve never been willing to start at the beginning either.
For the likes of this ilk, (you know who they are) it’s just a new ‘beginning’ in a DIFFERENT place, every time they open their mouths, and all the shit just contradicts or ignores all of the OTHER shit that has come before, from these same orifices. (they can’t even differentiate between their OWN piles of shit, so they can’t possibly sort anything else out.)

Just try to stay upwind of it. smile

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By samg, January 29, 2009 at 6:06 pm Link to this comment

mr. scheer: you make this less important than it is: getting the country through the worst economic crisis since the depression is obama’s job 1. and, as you write, the people he’s chosen to do the job are probably the wrong ones. the two wrongest appointees are: larry (phil gramm was right about deregulating those derivatives and dumping glass-steagall; and women belong in the kitchen, or, at best, teaching literature) summers. and timothy (i’m a student and a great admirer of larry summers, besides which i set a great example at treasury by not paying my taxes even though every american who works for the imf is warned in the strongest terms to do so) geitner, are not exactly a team that inspires confidence in turning around this economy. in addition to which both are acolytes of the sainted robert rubin, the greatest advocate of deregulation who then sold his services to that great american example of corruption and extortion, citigroup. obama looks terrible trusting these guys. he should hire joe stiglitz and mebbe prof. coffee from columbia u. also, and listen to their advice. if obama were a white man, i would suggest that he also seek advice from that great american, rep. john boehner, but only on one subject: how to keep that deep tan. as i see it, that is the extent of boehner’s knowledge about anything, and, since the president doesn’t happen to need advice on that subject,  i urge him to simply ignore boehner altogether and not even invite him to any more white house cocktail parties.  i wish he’d invite me instead. i could give him better economic and political advice.

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