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U.S.S. Cole
Wikimedia Commons / U.S. Navy

Report: CIA Wielded Gun, Power Drill in Interrogation

Another account describing the CIA’s alleged use of harsh interrogation techniques has come to light, according to a Newsweek magazine report about the intelligence agency’s treatment of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, a suspect in the 2000 bombing of the U.S. Navy destroyer Cole in Yemen.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE



Federal Reserve

Bernanke Talks of Better Economic Times Ahead

After seemingly endless months of relentlessly distressing financial reports, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said Friday that the economic news is looking up on both the national and global economic fronts, and that “prospects for a return to growth in the near term appear good.”

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Obama's Ramadan greeting

Obama Salutes Muslims Preparing for Ramadan

President Obama released a video greeting Friday to Muslims in America and abroad to commemorate the start on Saturday of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting and reflection for members of the Islamic faith.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Lutheran voters
AP / Dawn Villella

Lutheran Organization Votes to Include Monogamous Gay Clergy Members

The largest Lutheran organization in the U.S., the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, voted Friday to bring gay and lesbian clergy members into its fold—provided they are in committed relationships—signaling another seismic shift in the American Protestant scene this year.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


health care signs
AP / Lynne Sladky

The Death of Death Panels

The demise of the recent “death panels” debate was quick and painless—unlike so many of the deaths that will occur among those who will now be without the benefit of their doctor’s knowledge of the dying process.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Afghan Election, Blackwater’s Role

Was Thursday’s election in Afghanistan a step forward for representative democracy in the South Asian nation? What exactly does President Obama aim to accomplish in Afghanistan anyhow? This week’s lineup of commentators explores the possible connections between the CIA and Blackwater and considers the current status of the health care debate.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Surveillance
infowars.net

Surveillance Case Gets Canned

A judge has rejected a challenge to FISA brought by activists abroad who fear that their communications may be tapped by the U.S. government. The judge said fear is not enough to warrant a change in the law, and that challenges need to make explicit claims of unlawful surveillance. The question remains: How does one know he is being surveilled?

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Drought
watersecretsblog.com

In Dry Times, India Will Import Food

A dry spell in India’s usual monsoon season has had a dramatic effect on food prices and availability, affecting more than 700 million people in the world’s second most populous country. With its farmers hit hard by the drought, India is forced to begin importing food to make up for the shortages.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Muuuuuurdoch!
www.aca-demy.co.uk

Murdoch’s Money Misfortune

You know times are tough when even multimillionaire moguls are seeing their hard-earned compensation cut almost by half. Rupert Murdoch, the jowly head of News Corp., has taken a compensation cut of 40 percent because of weak earnings by his eccentric media empire.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE



A Bomb in Every Issue

Peter Richardson’s fascinating new book explores the short, unruly life of Ramparts Magazine and its extraordinary effect on American politics and media.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / kevindooley

Cristina Nehring on the New Erotic Fundamentalism

Are Americans sacrificing the possibility of a more tolerant humanity for a suffocating guarantee of fidelity, a frigid prospect that seemingly unites the commissars of the politically correct left as much as it does the thought police of the puritanical right?

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Freedom From Fear—and the Second Amendment

The gun nuts showing up at rallies and town hall meetings should check the order of their amendments: The First guarantees people—whatever their politics—a fundamental right to participate in their democracy without concern for physical retribution.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Missing: Democrats’ Passion

Here’s the least surprising news of the week: Americans are souring on the Democratic Party. The wonder is that it’s taken so long for public opinion to curdle.

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


New Credit Card Rules Activate

With the folksy charm of a timeshare salesman, Austan Goolsbee of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers outlines some of the new credit card rules, which began taking effect Thursday.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Barack Obama
White House / Pete Souza

Chris Hedges on Health Care, War and the New Racism

Chris Hedges talks about the illusion of health care reform, the war in Afghanistan and what he calls the “new racism” in the age of Obama.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE



USMC / Lance Cpl. Phillip Elgie

Reality Is Its Own Caricature for U.S. in Afghanistan and Pakistan

The problem with U.S.-sponsored elections in the non-Western world, as in Afghanistan on Thursday, is that they seek to legitimize America’s presence in the country, where it is typically not wanted.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


American troops in Afghanistan
army.mil

Lesson of Vietnam Lost in Afghanistan

Vietnam’s primary lesson remains intact: American power is not without limits, both in terms of defeating an enemy and in terms of its domestic support. The primary lesson of Vietnam seems to be that it is a lesson lost. And now we have some of the same intractable problems in Afghanistan.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Barack Obama
White House / Pete Souza

Chris Hedges on Health Care, War and the New Racism

Chris Hedges talks about the illusion of health care reform, the war in Afghanistan, and what he calls the “new racism” in the age of Obama.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Helmick and al-Mufriji
Defense Dept. / Army Staff Sgt. Michael J. Carden

U.S. Commander ‘Frustrated’ by Training Pace in Iraq

After Wednesday’s multiple bombings in Iraq, which left about 100 dead and more than 500 wounded, Army Lt. Gen. Frank Helmick, the U.S. commander in charge of training Iraqi troops before the Americans’ departure, said there’s “much work to be done” during and after the hand-over. 

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Yellow Submarine
amiright.com

Remake Mania, Beatlemania Meet on ‘Yellow Submarine’

Is it possible to pluck the Beatles’ psychedelic classic “Yellow Submarine” out of its original 1968 context, remake it and plunk it down somewhere around the year 2012 ... just in time for the London Olympics?

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Burress
AP / Seth Wenig

Plaxico Burress Heads to the Slammer

Not two years ago, NFL wide receiver Plaxico Burress was on top of his game, helping the New York Giants win Super Bowl XLII in a surprise victory over the New England Patriots. On Thursday, he was on his way to jail for two years after pleading guilty in a felony weapons case.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Ridge
dhs.gov

Ridge: Bushies Manipulated Terror Threat System

One sinister li’l tidbit from former Department of Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge’s upcoming tell-all won’t do much to change the Bush administration’s reputation for string-pulling on as many governmental fronts as possible: According to teasers released by his publisher, Ridge was pushed by Bush & Co. to raise the terrorist threat level on the eve of W.’s second electoral victory in 2004.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Lockerbie release

Scotland Releases Ailing ‘Lockerbie Bomber’

In this clip from the Associated Press, Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill of Scotland announces his country’s decision to release “Lockerbie bomber” Abdel Baset al-Megrahi on Thursday so the terminally ill Libyan can return to his homeland to die.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT

Barney Frank’s Town Hall Throwdown

Ever wonder whether it gets a touch exasperating for politicians to face angry throngs of American citizens at those unruly gatherings everyone quaintly insists on calling “town hall meetings”? Well, witness Barney Frank, here, on the brink of a town hall snap (or two) in this bit from Wednesday’s “Daily Show.”

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Afghan women
AP / Kevin Frayer

Polls Close in Afghanistan

Threats of violence kept large numbers of voters away from the polls in various parts of Afghanistan, and by closing time it was hard to say whether some officials’ declarations about the day’s success were warranted. But, thankfully, earlier warnings from the Taliban didn’t seem to materialize in the form of any major tragedies on Thursday.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Ahmadinejad
blog.ecr.co.za

Ahmadinejad Stacks Cabinet, Risks Splinters

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is building his new Cabinet and—surprise!—he has purged it of anyone in his previous Cabinet who dared voice a word of criticism. Some observers say Ahmadinejad is risking the wrath of his fellow conservatives, who have accused him of hoarding power by installing loyalists with little experience in governing.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


Enabling the Gun Nuts

The Secret Service says it is quite capable of protecting the president, but the rest of us don’t have armed guards.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


The Equal Rites Awards, 2009

Every year at this time, we celebrate the anniversary of women’s suffrage by recognizing those who have done their best over the last 12 months to set back the cause of women.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama’s Enforcer: Not Really Tough Enough

Every mistake made by the Obama White House in the pursuit of health care reform can be traced to the political style and ideological prejudices of Rahm Emanuel, who has repeatedly sought to intimidate progressives and empower conservatives.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


The Politics of the Jackboot

We are re-featuring this E.J. Dionne column from August of 2009 in light of this weekend’s deadly shooting in Arizona.

Posted on Aug 20, 2009 READ MORE


21st Century Saint

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Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE    


Have a Nice Day

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Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE    


Obama War

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Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE    


Don’t Delay

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Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE    


Maybe He’s Senile

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Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


Putin
Kremlin / Presidential Press and Information Office

Putin’s Pecs and Political Roid Rage

According to a report in Miller-McCune, scientists have determined that muscles make men irritable and politically aggressive. That makes Vladimir Putin’s pecs troublesome, say the researchers: “If governmental decision-makers are like other humans, then their musculature may be playing a role, unconnected from rational evaluation, in their decisions to go to war.”

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE



IAAF / Clyde Koa Wing

She’s Fast, but Is She a Woman?

South Africa’s 18-year-old Caster Semenya, the new 800-meter world champion, is so fast the International Association of Athletics Federations has dispatched an endocrinologist, a gynecologist, an internist, a genderist (?) and a psychologist to determine whether she’s actually female.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE



USAF / Master Sgt. James M. Bowman

The Pentagon Can’t Stop Baghdad Bombs

Coordinated bombings in Baghdad on Wednesday targeted the Foreign and Finance ministries, killing at least 95 and wounding hundreds more. It may feel like a flashback, but the violence never really left, as Patrick Cockburn, Scott Ritter, William Pfaff and Chris Hedges explain after the jump.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


Single Payer
green-rainbow.org

In a Reasoned Debate, Single Payer Will Come Out on Top

Single-payer advocates have been excluded from debate not because our premises or facts are wrong but because special interests, including the private health insurance industry and the big drug companies, have been allowed to define the limits of “politically feasible.”

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


 width=

‘The Daily Show’: Just Sayin’

Like an embarrassing father using the word tight or a mother who think it’s OK to dance to Beyoncé while carpooling, CNN has found yet another way to make your skin crawl by desperately trying to act “hip” as it struggles to find a niche in the cable news wars. Jon Stewart chides the network in a piece that will probably elicit a grimace or two.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


Bizarro World
deputadojailson.com.br

Brazil’s Bizarro Sarah Palin

Brazil’s Bizarro Sarah Palin, former Environment Minister Marina Silva, has just resigned from the ruling Worker’s Party in protest of the party’s neglect of environmental concerns. The move by Silva, a popular rain forest activist who had been a 30-year party member, is also believed to be an attempt to ramp up support for a run at the presidency next year.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


patriarchy
radicalrags.com

Gender Inequality 101

Conservatives love to claim we live in a post-racial or post-gender world, but researchers in England are reminding us of the persistent examples of inequality that mark our society. A new study demonstrates that women are less likely than men to be offered enrollment at England’s prestigious Oxford University despite having the same grades as, or even better grades than, their male counterparts.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


Life and Fate
nypost.com

‘Life and Fate’ at the Lincoln Center Festival

“Life and Fate” by Vasily Grossman is one of the greatest works of 20th century literature. A new theatrical adaptation is innovative, but ultimately loses the epic’s profound meditations on good and evil.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


UBS
bloomberg.com

Swiss Bank to Hand Over Account Info

Swiss bank accounts aren’t what they used to be. Switzerland recently agreed to fork over information on 4,450 UBS AG bank accounts to the IRS as an investigation into suspected tax evasion threatens the good name that Swiss banking has provided to money launderers and tax evaders for centuries.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


ICE Raids
ocregister.com

ICE Cools It on the Quotas

A controversial program that had set quotas for the arrest of undocumented immigrants is finally over. While U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will continue to bust into homes and workplaces, arresting and deporting illegal immigrants—some without deportation orders or criminal records—agents will no longer have a hard number that has to be met.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Yonhap

North Korea Bows to the South’s Fallen Pioneer

Did Bill Clinton shake something loose during his recent visit to Pyongyang? No, Kim Jong Il’s overtures to his southern neighbors this week are the legacy of Kim Dae-jung, the former president and first modern South Korean leader to visit the North. Kim died Tuesday. He survived political persecution and attempted assassination to cross the neutral zone and step into history.

Posted on Aug 19, 2009 READ MORE


Gramm
AP / Dean Cox

UBS Money Laundering: What Did Phil Gramm Know?

In recent days yet another wealthy private customer of the Swiss-based banking conglomerate UBS admitted to criminal fraud in a growing parade of perp walks that could extend into the thousands. It is a case that threatens to ensnare former Sen. Phil Gramm, the Texas Republican who is vice chairman of UBS’ investment banking business.

Posted on Aug 18, 2009 READ MORE



AP / LM Otero

The Right’s Trouble With Violence

With angry white men bringing their guns too close to the president, Josh Marshall writes: “Let’s be honest with ourselves: the American right has a deep-seated problem with political violence. It’s deep-seated; it’s recurrent and it’s real.”

Posted on Aug 18, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Jae C. Hong

You Can’t Blame Obama for American Stubbornness

The president is simply too decent to get the job done. His advisers never learn from their mistakes and the American public is intolerant and hasn’t a clue as to what really is going on in the world.

Posted on Aug 18, 2009 READ MORE


television sunset
femexvoleibol.com

The End of Network TV as We Know It

The American television industry is in crisis, according to Advertising Age critic Bob Garfield, who figures prominently in The Wrap’s two-part look into the future of the industry. In fact, says Garfield, we’re seeing early signs of “the total collapse of the network television model.”

Posted on Aug 18, 2009 READ MORE


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