...But of these sophisms and elenchs of merchandise I skill not...
Milton, Areopagitica

Except he had found the
standing sea-rock that even this last
Temptation breaks on; quieter than death but lovelier; peace
that quiets the desire even of praising it.

Jeffers, Meditation On Saviors



This just in, from CNN's technology desk:

Voting machines could bring Election Day glitches

Glitches! Wer gewusst haben könnte?!
On July 13, the Pensacola, Fla.-based law firm of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. filed a “qui tam” lawsuit in U.S. District Court, alleging that Diebold and other electronic voting machine (EVM) companies fraudulently represented to state election boards and the federal government that their products were “unhackable.”
Matt Schultz, an attorney with Kennedy’s law firm, Levin Papantonio, describes the process of competition for HAVA’s contractor funds as “a race to the bottom.” “There is no question in my mind that these companies sacrificed security and accuracy, mass-producing a cheap product to cash in on tons of federal money,” Schultz says. “It’s an industry-wide problem.”
Qui tam lawsuits stem from a provision in the Civil False Claims Act, which Congress passed in 1863 at the behest of President Abraham Lincoln to respond to price gouging, use of defective products and substitution of inferior material by contractors supplying the Union Army. The provision allows private citizens to file a suit in the name of the U.S. government charging fraud by government contractors and other entities that receive or use government funds.
InTheseTimes Jul. 2006
Qui tam! Quem pode ter sabido?
...something deeply troubling had taken place in 2004. Nearly half of the 6 million American voters living abroad never received their ballots — or received them too late to vote — after the Pentagon unaccountably shut down a state-of-the-art Web site used to file overseas registrations. A consulting firm called Sproul & Associates, which was hired by the Republican National Committee to register voters in six battleground states, was discovered shredding Democratic registrations. In New Mexico, which was decided by 5,988 votes, malfunctioning machines mysteriously failed to properly register a presidential vote on more than 20,000 ballots. Nationwide, according to the federal commission charged with implementing election reforms, as many as 1 million ballots were spoiled by faulty voting equipment — roughly one for every 100 cast.
RFKennedyJr rollingstone Jun. 2006
Chi dovrebbe ha saputo?
AVI RUBEN: Well I think it’s very interesting. What’s interesting to me is that this action happened not because of security problems, per se, but because of the way Diebold handled the systems once they were in the field, putting unauthorized patches in, misleading people about what they were doing, it was more of their behaviour than the actual security problems which I think are just as big a deal. I think there are going to be ramifications for a lot of states. Ohio is one of the states that’s really on the fence right now, they’re purchasing electronic voting machines, but they still have many purchases to go, that they’re planning on making, that have been held up for awhile because of security concerns.
DemNow! May 2004
Qui pourrait savoir?

BEV HARRIS:But the Diebold company itself is interesting, it does have very strong Republican ties, specifically to the Bush administration. They have a C.E.O. named Wally Odell He is a close crony of Dick Cheney, in fact just recently in July he had Cheney come to his house and he held a fundraiser for Cheney that raised $500,000. They have a board of directors member who is one of the Bush Pioneers. That is a small and elite group that gives huge amounts of money to the presidential campaign. This fellow’s name is W.H. Timcan.
DemNow! Aug. 2003
Quién podría haber sabido?


It’s a complicated time:

QUESTION: Armed agents, for instance.

SECRETARY RICE: Yes. And so we think that this is – armed agents? No. We’re going to respect Mexican law, and the Mexican Government is in control on this issue. And my colleague Patricia just addressed this downstairs.

QUESTION: There won’t be American agents armed in the Mexican territory?

SECRETARY RICE: We will – the Mexican Government has complete control over how this is carried out. But this is to make Mexican security forces more capable, not to impose American security forces on Mexico.

QUESTION: Tell me about the funds, because there has been a debate about this and when the funds are coming finally.

SECRETARY RICE: Yes. Well, the funds will come, and they will come, I think, very soon. There is a letter – there are letters of agreement that have to be completed for part of the funding, and that is being done. But I just want to assure you that we understand the urgency of this. It’s urgent for Mexico. It’s urgent for the United States.
Secretary Condoleezza Rice
Interview With Leonardo Kourchenko of Televisa
ScoopNZ 28.Oct.08


What the Victorians called tulipomania:

"The beginning of tulpenwoerde, or what the Victorians called tulipomania, is associated with the arrival in the tulip market around 1634 of outsiders who were apparently attracted by stories of rising prices for tulip bulbs in Paris and northern France. Among the entrants into the market--later dismissed by Dutch florists as the 'new entrants'--were weavers, spinners, cobblers, bakers, grocers, and peasants. ...

"No actual delivery of tulips took place during the height of the boom in late 1636 and early 1637 as the bulbs remained snug in the ground ... [and] a market in tulip futures appeared. Most transactions were expedited with personal credit notes and [one individual] boasted of having made 60,000 guilders from his tulip speculations but admits that he had only received 'other people's writing
a key difference between then and now:
The average annual wage in Holland was between 200 and 400 guilders. 
A small town house cost around 300 guilders.
Delancey Place 27.Oct.08


Loading Robot Wisdom out of bookmarks in the browser I'm currently using throws these popup warnings, in this order:


on the hither side of the crisis:

Are heart and blood perhaps subtracted from the living reality of a body? Is a financial stroke indifferent to the health of the economy as a whole? As we know, financial capitalism has always – which is to say for the past five centuries – been a major, central component of capitalism in general. As for the owners and managers of this system, by definition they are only "responsible" for profits, their "rationality" is to be measured by their earnings, and it is not just that they are predators, but that they have to be.

Accordingly, we do not find anything more "real" in the engine-room of capitalist production than on its commercial decks or in its speculative cabins. The last two in any case corrupt the first: in their crushing majority, the objects produced by this type of machinery – being aimed solely at profit, and at the derivative speculations which form the fastest and most considerable part of this profit – are ugly, cumbersome, inconvenient, useless, and it is necessary to spend billions to persuade people otherwise. This presupposes that people be transformed into spoiled children, eternal adolescents, whose existence merely consists in changing toys.

The return to the real cannot be a movement leading from bad "irrational" speculation back to healthy production. It is the return to the immediate and reflective life of all those who inhabit this world. It is from that vantage-point that one can observe capitalism without flinching, including the disaster movie that it is currently inflicting upon us. The real is not this movie, but its audience.
But the real of this zero-sum game is as always on the side of the collective, of ordinary life: in the end, everything stems from the fact that there exist millions of people whose wages, or absence thereof, means that they are absolutely unable to house themselves. The real essence of the financial crisis is a housing crisis. And those who can’t find a home are by no means the bankers.

Alain Badiou/LeMonde/infinite thought 17/18.Oct.08
via matrullo


As I said Friday, this thaw - took a while to thaw, it's going to take a while to unthaw. But it's - but the attitude here is a little different than it might have been a week ago.
GWBush 23.Oct.08


winning praise as a crisis leader:

Sarkozy has quickly adopted a bully pulpit for Europe and its traditionally more measured approach to markets. In Strasbourg Tuesday, speaking to the European Parliament, he stated that Europe "must carry the idea of a new foundation of global capitalism. What happened [with toxic assets and derivatives that created a credit crisis] was a treason of the values of capitalism," he said. "The market economy itself is not called into question."

The French president's peripatetic style is proving useful for a major crisis with multiple elements – which plays into his ability to do many things at once.

all following headlines from google news 18.Oct.08:

UN offers Sarkozy its headquarters for summit
Sarkozy gets it right
Sarkozy Galvanised EU to Cope With Crisis
Sarkozy Calls For Revamping Of Capitalist System
Sarkozy, history meet in Quebec
Sarkozy blesses idea of Canadian unity
Sarkozy pushes for Africa
France's 'Omni-President' Wins Praise for Take-Charge Approach
Mr. Sarkozy stays the course
Sarkozy charms the world
Nicolas Sarkozy Wins Humanitarian Award
Sarkozy's Jewish roots, article in Australian Jewish News
The crazy-making part of this is the "canard" that Jewish money and political influence are operating in covert and powerful ways to influence world events to the benefit of Jewish interests.
So that's not true because we know it isn't, because of the Holocaust, an unspeakable horror caused by irrational bigotry and racial arrogance, and because it's constantly denounced as anti-Semitic to say that the media is controlled by Jews, which anti-Semitism is a terrible crime worse than any other form of racial bigotry, certainly worse than anti-Arab bigotry because they deserve it, and because anti-Semitism is the expression of an ancient prejudice that's so undeserved and so false, and really let's face it a direct result of the superiority of the victims to their oppressors.
So there is no Jewish influence on world events in ways that benefit Jewish interests, because there can't be, and because of the Holocaust, and even if there was so what? 
And Jewish self-interest doesn't exist anyway as separate from the interests of non-Jews because we're all in this together, now with Nicholas Sarkozy to lead us through and onward.
So the idea that all this disgusting fawning shallow attention that celebrates Sarkozy and places him Zelig-like or Gump-like definitely Hollywood style at the center of every important world event - especially the disgusting and fawningly shallow coverage of his bizarre insertion into the obviously fake and orchestrated "rescue" of Ingrid Betancourt, that smelled, nee stank, a lot like a miniaturized version of the fake and orchestrated Iranian hostage "rescue" that Ronald Reagan was given to perform in in his Hollywood-scripted role as "leader" of the Free World - the idea that all that syrupy praise comes at us as a direct result of disproportionate self-interested Jewish influence in international news media is simple anti-Semitism, and should never be treated as a serious concern, only as a sickness to be wiped out. Because of the Holocaust.
Or - maybe Sarkozy's being promoted by the same invisible hands that promoted Bush.
Given the same free ride, boosted carefully into position, to be used in the same way Bush was used, though probably not used up quite so thoroughly then discarded so coldly, the way Bush has been and is being.
People have been encouraged to forget that it was the media that elected GWBush not the actual voters. And they have dutifully forgotten, because really they never knew that, not consciously. And because by forgetting they can go on pretending that they have a choice and a say in what happens to them next
And it is and will remain forbidden to point out that the media that create foster and maintain this illusion are essentially Jewish organizations in that they are owned and run and their public faces are far and away predominantly Jewish. Witness the grotesquely dishonest coverage of Palestinian suffering, which it is forbidden to even admit the existence of, because they deserve it.
It is forbidden because of the virulent nature of anti-Semitism. Because of the Holocaust, which is a kind of giant all-purpose 9/11.
And it is not allowed either to point out the steady flattening corrupting of news outlets like the formerly incisive and vibrant AFP into house organs for whatever that is that's doing all that. To, except here and in places like this, point to the way AFP went from clearly bitter repudiations of the Iraq invasion to benign and shallow "reporting" of the progress of the forces of democracy in Iraq, this photo being an exemplary example of the AFP's onetime intelligent demonstration of the hinkiness of that enterprise:

showing Bremer the American proconsul in Iraq confronting the ancient treasure of Nimrod. Some knowledge of Jewish history would deepen the resonance of that image considerably.
See for instance Babylon, Jewish slavery in.  See also the mysterious destruction and looting of the Iraqi museums of antiquity, which is to say the museums in Iraq with antiquities in them. Now all gone somewhere but no one knows where.
Bremer, a Jew, was the first installed ruler of American-occupied Iraq and later the ostensive father of its Constitution. Big man in that sense. Picture is from an AFP that at the time was critical and intelligently skeptical of the US endeavor, but shortly thereafter went through an ownership change and a site revamp and became a toothless though still commercially large presence in the international media community. 
And not co-incidentally went from running images of Sarkozy that showed his buffoonish affect to images that emphasized his decisiveness and firm command, illusory as those images might actually be.
It is not allowed to say that that should be a real concern, that possible Jewish influence on the decision to invade Iraq should be discussed openly, that Jewish influence on media coverage of that invasion should be accounted for publicly, that Jewish takeover of a media house as important as Agence France Press should be as open to criticism and analysis as any other powerful phenomena that affects all of us.
Because it isn't. Not at all. Not allowed, because of the Holocaust.
Think of all that horror.
Never again.
Even if we have to have, possibly unfortunately necessary, a Holocaust for everybody else, like say a nuclear war.
What is allowed, and not only allowed but encouraged, is the cathartic image of the wreckage of the great Wall Street wealth transfer, masked as a crisis in which there are no winners, only losers, when in fact there are winners but they remain mostly nameless and hidden; the cathartic puppetry of the US Presidential election masked as a contest; the cathartic dangling of Sarah Palin and John McCain like piñatas before the bewildered and blindfolded electorate; and most preciously the shining beacon of Obama, hope of the hopeless, the last saving presence possible now, and no one else on the horizon except...except, who is that excited little man, off in the distance there?
This disturbingly cartoon-like figure, N. Sarkozy, bouncing around the world stage from Colombia to Kennebunkport to Georgia to Israel to Strasbourg.
Who, if you map all three of them over each other and squint, happens to share with George W. Bush a remarkable structural affinity to Disney's Mickey Mouse, at one time the most ubiquitous and endearing figure in the world.


The earth, as it looked from here, 21.Oct.08:

India was preparing to launch its first unmanned space ship to the moon early Wednesday, part of an effort to assert its power in space and claim some of the business opportunities out there.
On Sept. 25, the Global Carbon Project, made of a group of scientists reporting on greenhouse gas emissions annually, released a report saying that carbon emissions rose in 2007, and that such emissions are growing at four times the rate in this decade than they were in the 1990s.
Pep Canadell, the group’s executive director, said that India will likely overtake Russia as the world’s largest emitter of toxic gases
Released last month, the scientific findings of the Global Carbon Project show that, in 2007, over half the world's emissions came from high-growth developing economies led by China and India, and that this share is rising because emissions from developed economies are growing less fast.
The project's Australia-based executive director, Pep Canadell, said China alone accounted for 60 percent of emissions growth last year. This was due to China's heavy reliance on coal for generating electricity and oil for transport fuels.
Despite the increasing international sense of urgency, the growth rate of emissions continued to speed up, bringing the atmospheric CO2 concentration to 383 parts per million (ppm) in 2007.
"The disturbing conclusion, documented in a paper I have written with several of the world’s leading climate experts, is that the safe level of atmospheric carbon dioxide is no more than 350 ppm (parts per million) and it may be less. Carbon dioxide amount is already 385 ppm and rising about 2 ppm per year. Stunning corollary: the oft-stated goal to keep global warming less than two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) is a recipe for global disaster, not salvation."
James Hansen
The pollution leader was China, followed by the United States, which past data show is the leader in emissions per person in carbon dioxide output. And while several developed countries slightly cut their CO2 output in 2007, the U.S. churned out more.

Still, it was large increases in China, India and other developing countries that spurred the growth of carbon dioxide pollution to a record high of 8.47 billion tonnes of carbon.

Figures released by science agencies in the U.S., Great Britain and Australia show that China's added emissions accounted for more than half of the worldwide increase. China passed the United States as the No. 1 carbon dioxide polluter in 2006.
The latest figures on the global carbon budget to be released in Washington and Paris today[26.Sep.08] indicate a four-fold increase in growth rate of human-generated carbon dioxide emissions since 2000.
I watched a little of SNL Saturday, with Sarah Palin appearing which I only overheard being occupied with chores, and Josh Brolin, star of "W", presenting. His opening monologue was a steady flow of insults and cheap jokes at the President's expense. This is very useful catharsis to the real architects of the Bush Administration's criminal activities. Because it makes getting rid of him the single most important thing, whereas undoing the damage he's done - to the world, to the country, and to people's hearts - is the single most important thing.
Oliver Stone was in the audience and stood up and said something, then sat down again.
In the relatively few minutes I did watch the show there were two bizarrely mediocre skits, that didn't feature Palin, and at least four commercials for different cars - 28 mpg! - as well as one for a video game that involved fast skillful driving.
My mind being as it is, I keep seeing the human occupancy of the car as a mutually parasitic inhabitation. Symbiotic. Soft physically incapable organism inside armored but mentally incapable organism.
That I think is an elemental piece of the issue of climate change, and possibly more importantly, human evolution.
Something reptilian, Miltonic, gloating, in those gleaming commercials.
The seduction of the brand-new car is more intensely felt now, especially by young males, than any other. Even sex, who with or if, is often determined by the car's status, which bestows as much as it reflects the owner's status.
Cars are central now to the human presence on earth, central to human identity, though this is never acknowledged outside the marketplace, and then only by inference from the energy constantly devoted there to selling them.
It's a presence and an identity actually made less human by that strange steel mutation, and which appears to be headed into a very long absence because of it.


Soldiers of Conscience: Opposing the Iraq War

Iraq Veterans Against the War
Courage to Resist
Veterans for Common Sense
Winter Soldier 2008 Archives from Pacifica Radio

Veterans of Iraq in the news:

In Portland Oregon in a continuation of the "Winter Soldier" hearings

"I am standing here today as a criminal - in a sense of the word that only someone who has worn the uniform can understand"
and outside the final Presidential debate where Iraq veteran Nick Morgan was trampled by a horse ridden into him deliberately by a police officer.

"At least one, we believe two, were trampled, because another one was knocked down. His name is also Geoff Millard. And another woman was trampled, as well. And I have not seen injuries like that since Iraq, seeing him laying on the ground like that. I don’t need to go through that here in the streets. I don’t need to go through that here in America. I don’t need to relive that. And this is what I got tonight trying to peacefully bring a message to these candidates and which we’re trying to elect. And both of them claim that they support veterans. And this is how we got supported tonight, by being pushed back, trampled and arrested."


Give me irony or give me death
The biggest civil liberty of all is not to be killed
Joan Didion in the NYRB:
The leading candidates duly presented their "health care solutions," not one of which addressed the core problem, which is the $350 billion a year it costs, according to a Harvard Medical School study, to cut in the commercial insurance industry.
We did not need to talk about how the question of race has been and continues to be used to exacerbate the real issue in American life, which is class, or absence of equal opportunity.
We could argue over whether "intelligent design" should be taught in our schools as an alternative to evolution, and overlook the fact that the rankings of American schools have already dropped to twenty-first in the world in the teaching of science and twenty-fifth in the world in the teaching of math.
We could forget the 70 percent of American eighth graders who do not now and never will read at eighth-grade levels, meaning they will never qualify to hold one of those jobs we no longer have.
Colin Powell: The Iraq war is the Iraq war. We now see that things are a lot better in Iraq.
In the last three years, Yemen has become a centre for trafficking Iraqi women.
Ted Nugent: ... instruct the U.S. military warriors to do their job — win the global war on terror right now and eliminate all threats from all sources by any means necessary
they must beat him by a margin that exceeds the level of GOP vote tampering
...a passive camera-based radiometric detection system, the T4000, which acts on naturally occurring low-energy terahertz emissions from humans and objects - known to physicists as Boltzmann radiation. This may be particularly useful...

"Banks are now willing to lend to one another. That's a huge plus for the economy because the big problem has been that banks have been unwilling to trust one another," he said

The treasury secretary seems out of breath.
He gazed down at me with gentle eyes and a serene smile.
Sadly, his case is just the latest in a series of abductions, disappearances and murders
She wanted to end what she felt was a hopeless and degrading life.
In April, a foliage sculpture of Starr outside a railway station in Liverpool was beheaded by vandals.
The author lives in virtual seclusion, only travels to his former homeland incognito and never speaks to the media.
Gunmen in central Sudan have kidnapped nine Chinese oil workers. It is the third such kidnapping in the oil-rich region over the past year. The government blames a Darfur rebel group. Diplomats say the kidnappers are local tribesmen who are demanding a larger share in the region's oil revenues.
The release of the nine was announced soon after police arrived on the island of West Caicos, where they were being held.
Some 80 trucks carrying food and medical aid for the Gaza Strip had to wait for several hours.
Israeli leaders are seriously considering a dormant Saudi plan offering a comprehensive peace between Israel and the Arab world in exchange for lands captured during the 1967 war, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Sunday.
[This may mean an incident in the next few days, some shocking act of anti-Israeli violence that will bounce off and contrast with the "serious considerations for comprehensive peace" and justify an already planned retaliation]
[CIA Director Michael] Hayden's trip, however, does not fall under the security and intelligence category
"More troops are not the answer," a senior United Nations official in Kabul tells me. "You will not make more babies by having many guys screw the same woman."
But nothing has proved to be as lucrative as the drug trade, which accounts for 53 percent of Afghanistan's gross domestic product. In the province of Helmand alone, the drug trade is a business worth several billion dollars per year.
So far not a single corrupt minister or leading drug baron has so much as been charged with a crime much less sentenced.
Just recently, the New York Times published a story about the alleged involvement of Karzai's brother, Ahmed Wali, in the drug trade. President Karzai himself denied the allegations in an interview with SPIEGEL, saying, "I have thoroughly investigated these accusations; none of them are true."

Koelbl/Spiegel 17.Oct.08
"But legitimacy, including crucially in the eyes of the Afghan people. Why on earth would or should the US, a power that’s very distant both geographically and culturally, and NATO (ditto) have control of a pacification operation in Afghanistan?"
Helena Cobban in comments at registan

"You do remember 9/11, don’t you?"
TCHe ibid.
She [A. Huffington] segued into a fluent disquisition on the Bush Administration’s flawed decision to focus on Iraq at the expense of Afghanistan, and concluded, “Yes, we want peace, but we also agree on enemies. And so that is a very important distinction that Obama has made, and Kucinich failed to make.”
George W. Bush has grown old, erratic and rosy in the eight years of his presidency. Little remains of his combativeness or his enthusiasm for physical fitness. On this sunny Tuesday morning in New York, even his hair seemed messy and unkempt, his blue suit a little baggy around the shoulders, as Bush stepped onto the stage, for the eighth time, at the United Nations General Assembly.
The decision has been backed up by a recent survey which showed a decline in the number of shortwave listeners in North America.
it's hard not to crack a smile over news that Sumner Redstone is in trouble
As the U.S. private banking system self-destructs, we need to ensure that a public credit system is in place and ready to serve the people’s needs in its stead.
Why hasn't HRW[Human Rights Watch] called for a full disclosure of US funding of the opposition in Bolivia given the murders recently perpetrated in Pando by anti-government groups?
The first step to a new hemispheric partnership is the recognition that the Monroe doctrine is, in the 21st century, quite dead
Cuba has no stock exchange. Undoubtedly, we will find more rational and more socialist ways of financing our development.
The current crisis and the brutal measures of the U.S. administration to save itself will bring more inflation, more devaluation of national currencies, more painful losses in the markets, lower prices for exports and more unequal exchange. But they will also bring to the peoples a better understanding of the truth, more awareness, more rebelliousness and more revolutions.
Fidel Castro Ruz
October 11, 2008

via uruknet / granma
the world, as it looked from here

if nothing else:

If nothing else, many workers may feel that they will have to work longer than they had previously planned.


And if she's a good enough likeness of a loudmouthed Middle American archetype, as Sarah Palin is, John Q. Public will drop his giant-size bag of Doritos in gratitude, wipe the Sizzlin' Picante dust from his lips and rush to the booth to vote for her. Not because it makes sense, or because it has a chance of improving his life or anyone else's, but simply because it appeals to the low-humming narcissism that substitutes for his personality, because the image on TV reminds him of the mean, brainless slob he sees in the mirror every morning.

Sarah Palin is a symbol of everything that is wrong with the modern United States. As a representative of our political system, she's a new low in reptilian villainy, the ultimate cynical masterwork of puppeteers like Karl Rove. But more than that, she is a horrifying symbol of how little we ask for in return for the total surrender of our political power. Not only is Sarah Palin a fraud, she's the tawdriest, most half-assed fraud imaginable, 20 floors below the lowest common denominator, a character too dumb even for daytime TV — and this country is going to eat her up, cheering her every step of the way. All because most Americans no longer have the energy to do anything but lie back and allow ourselves to be jacked off by the calculating thieves who run this grasping consumer paradise we call a nation.
Taibbi/rolling stone 02.Oct.08
via wood s lot

The censorship thing at Mondoweiss was me, blind and fearful, missing the subtle but essential arrow.
One obvious lesson being that when you're worried, be even more careful to be precise and accurate in your judgments.


Update to this post - Phil Weiss didn't do it. More to come.


Die Unfallursache ist jedoch weiterhin unklar. Laut Polizeiangaben hatte Haider auf der Loiblpass-Bundesstraße einen Pkw überholt, sich danach jedoch wieder auf der stadtauswärts zweispurigen Straße auf dem rechten Fahrstreifen eingeordnet. Erst danach passierte der Unfall.


terrorists are terrorists, at least in the media:

American activist Lori Berenson was pulled off a bus in Peru in November of 1995, detained by anti-terrorist police, and tried for treason against the Peruvian state by a hooded military tribunal. A gun was held to her head as she received her sentence: life in prison. Accused of being a leader of the MRTA (Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement), Lori was one of thousands of people kidnapped, tortured, disappeared, and/or imprisoned during then-president Alberto Fujimori’s campaign to defeat rebel groups.
Do you have hope for the Chavez/Morales movement in Latin America, the threat of having a unified Latin American bloc that could potentially create solidarity among Latin American countries? What do you think about that?

I think it’s important that there be solidarity. But I don’t have enough information to know what they are really doing or not. What is clear to me is that it is still not possible to change the rules of the game. That’s the issue. You have to get to that place. It’s good that they feel this way. Certainly here in Peru the leaders seem to be afraid of something about the Chavez movement. What are they so afraid of? And the Peruvians are very afraid. And much of the U.S. is too. Actually, I think that they are giving us a hand on that. By making bigger deals out of things, they are actually unifying the left on certain things. Well, thank you!
Emma Shaw Crane/UpsideDownWorld 25.Sep.08
The Barrios Altos massacre took place on 3 November 1991, in the Barrios Altos neighborhood of Lima, Peru. Fifteen people, including an eight year old child, were killed, and four more injured, by assailants who were later determined to be members of Grupo Colina, a death squad made up of members of the Peruvian Armed Forces.
The atrocity came to be seen as a symbol of the human rights violations committed during the presidency of Alberto Fujimori and was one of the crimes for which Fujimori was extradited from Chile to Peru on September 20, 2007. It had previously been cited in the request for his extradition submitted by the Peruvian government to Japan in 2003.
The La Cantuta massacre, in which a university professor and nine students from Lima's La Cantuta University were abducted and "disappeared" by a military death squad, took place in Peru on 18 July 1992 during the presidency of Alberto Fujimori. The incident occurred just two days after the Shining Path's Tarata bombing left over 40 dead in Lima Province.
The incident is notable not only for the violations of human rights that it entailed, but for the impunity subsequently enjoyed by its perpetrators. It was one of crimes for which Fujimori was extradited to Peru on 20 September 2007 and was cited in the request for the extradition of Fujimori submitted by the Peruvian government to Japan in 2003.
Trial against former Peruvian President Fujimori resumes
The trial of Alberto Fujimori
Alberto Fujimori, former president of Peru, and three former ministers may be accused of genocide by Peru's parliament.

A commission concluded that thousands of Peruvians—mostly poor indigenous people—underwent compulsory surgical sterilisation that resulted in damage to their dignity and physical integrity including deaths due to improper health care.

The report on the “voluntary contraceptive surgery activities” programme set up by Mr Fujimori's government was released on 23 July by health minister Dr Fernando Carbone-Campoverde.
British Medical Journal
Peru's military blames Shining Path for deadly attack
[This article, as you might expect, is written in a way that presents the Peruvian military as defenders of the innocent, and the Tupac Amaru as killers of the innocent.
As with the Israeli/Palestinian conflict one side has a voice and the other has no voice, not in the US anyway, and carnage by the actual villains is presented as simply a response by the more powerful side against the violent attacks of the less powerful.
And just as in Palestine, it's the ones CNN paints as in the wrong who are actually in the right.
These are not murky gray-area moral situations. They only seem that way because the truth is not allowed to be heard in the commercial media that most Americans still rely on for their views of the world.]
Committee to Free Lori Berenson

terrorist links with drug lords

The threats in this hemisphere are real.
We cannot ignore them:
U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration operations chief Michael Braun:
It is not in our interest to let that potpourri of scum to come together"
Anderson/AP/WP 08.Oct.08
The nexus between drugs and terror is growing at light speed. This is not a new trend - there have been numerous links identified between drugs and terror over the last twenty-five years.
Michael Braun assistant administrator and chief of operations at the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
To his mates in the New York prison where he awaits sentencing for a drug-smuggling conviction, the bearded, soft-spoken Israeli, who Customs Department officials say regularly ministers to a small flock of religious Jewish prisoners, is known as "Rabbi Ya'akov."
The rest of the world, however, knows the "rabbi," a former Los Angeles resident, as Jacob "Koki," or "Cookie" Orgad. Until his arrest in April 2000, he was the biggest Ecstasy, or MDMA, trafficker ever to be convicted in this country.
In the world of drug smuggling, groups from many countries have made their mark. Israelis, according to drug enforcement officials, were prominent in one of the first rings -- their presence in Europe and connections in the diamond industry allowed them to stake out a big piece of the market. The Israelis also involved Chassidic couriers and others in the Jewish community, drug enforcement officials say.
Teitelbaum/TJJ 02.Aug.01
The vors consider themselves as the aristocracy of the underworld because they made their "bones" the hard way. Many of the older generation was recruited while serving sentences in the infamous work camps of the Siberian Gulug prison system. 
The clans have a structure and culture similar to the Sicilian Cosa Nostra, but there is no overall Mafiya Commission. A similar hierarchy of command appears to be non-existent; no capoclan accepts orders from others, certainly not a supreme capo. Interclan cooperation does occur when bands unite for international ventures, often in alliance with non-Russian mafias.
The so-called "cocaine triangle," for instance, involves a combination of Colombian drug barons, Israel-Jewish money launderers and Jewish-Russian mafiosi. The Columbians funnel the cash, the Israelis launder it, and the Russians provide the security and muscle.
Rick Porrello/ American Mafia


Well, here we go:

Phil Weiss pulled a bunch of comments on this post -
Martillo's Post on Zionists Manipulating Markets for 50 Years Is Antisemitic
Mine among them:

Are we supposed to think it's just simple coincidence that Bernanke and Greenspan are Jews?
Wolfowitz jumping around between the US State Dept. and the [IMF] World Bank, coincidence? Chertoff, Negroponte, and who knows who...
No connection. No pattern, nothing but that ancient irrational substanceless prejudice that says Jews will undermine with self-interest any state they prosper in, it's all irrational bigotry, nothing more.
The problem I have personally is no one defends this with reason and fact, there's only the hate sites and all that racist spew against a stone wall of silence and disdain that wants it disappeared unexamined.
So who will tell us?
Richard Witty with his calm assurances?
I'd listen more closely Richard but all you do is deny things, and you never back up your assertions.
I crawled through 4 years of vicious calumny and nasty behind the scenes response, some hurtful some damaging and all frightening in intensity, to my heartfelt and intellectually honest questions and conclusions that the Iraq invasion and occupation was greatly influenced by Jewish/Israeli interests, and never once saw that refuted competently and honestly and factually.
And eventually had it confirmed, not least here.
Nothing ever came from the other side but craziness and manipulative word games.
Just disdain, sarcasm, bitterness, and baseless assertions.
You, and people like you, Richard, have allowed the heat of anti-Semitism to burn, to become fire, by your arrogance and by your cowardice.
There's also a post at Weiss, and one at Tiny Revolution, both considering the SNL skit about the bailout etc. that mocks George Soros.
TinyRev's lead paragraph:
At stressful moments in the past, Saturday Night Live has often produced stupid, vicious, ugly material. But their sketch three days ago about the Wall Street bailout may be the lowest moment in the show's history.
This comment may ride on through, or it may disappear as well:
Jon Stewart's pretty consistently mocked the big anti-Semitic accusations, by jumping ahead of them, then playing with them by pretending they're true.
Which means they can't be true, sort of. Because he's pretending they are
Blunting, redirecting, but responding to what's already there.
What's there? A growing, and widely fragmented but real concern that what's happened, and happening, to America - 9/11, the War on Terror, the Iraq invasion, the push to invade Iran, and now this financial debacle, coming as it gets clear the American people aren't buying the lies anymore - has a strong but hidden component of Jewish self-interest all through it.
Ridiculing that by pretending to its validity, and by that pretending blunting and redirecting it back on itself.
It isn't working.
I just saw 911 Press for Truth, and the striking fact of the presence of Henry Kissinger on the 911 Commission, and then the less striking but very disturbing replacement of Kissinger with the egregious Philip Zelikow, didn't do much to allay my own concerns. And I've got that Keatsian negative capability running a lot of the time, most Americans don't.
It seems pretty naive to express wonder that the SNL writers, many of them Jewish, could produce this stuff.
Gosh! What were they thinking?
Probably that this shit is getting out of hand, because it is. So what can we do?
I know! We'll do an end run around it! We'll pretend like it's true!
Maybe that's what it is, and maybe it'll work, I don't think so, but I've been wrong about important things before.
I do know this:
Not confronting it directly only enables it.
It has to be confronted directly or it will start increasing exponentially; direct questions need to be asked and answered.
But it takes balls to do that.


U.S. calls for unity as crisis wrecks markets
In bad economy, power cutoffs soar
In London, Bloomberg Calls for Optimism

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg received the Freedom of the City of London. He posed with Sir Michael Snyder, left, deputy chairman of policy of the Corporation of London, and Stuart Fraser, the corporation’s chairman
These items aren't presented as being related directly, or at least no more than all events are directly related, the way fish starving among dead coral are related to songbirds starving in the exoticized landscape of suburban Atlanta.
Keats wants me to, or to be able to, entertain, which means in this context hold, two opposing ideas without "any irritable reaching after fact and reason". 
I try.
This is chaos, this is the dam breaking because of bad engineering and shoddy construction materials and practices.
This is the dam breaking because explosive charges were set at its base and touched off remotely,  intentionally, timed to the second.
I'm not irritable.
I'm not reaching.
The American whatchadewey, the people, back in 2006 sent a big smoke signal to Washington, that the war so-called in Iraq had to stop, right now.
It didn't you'll notice. 
And - important point - everyone who felt like that then has been joined by at least one other person who feels like that now, and no one has gone back the other way.
If you don't think that's important you probably aren't even reading this.
So faced with mounting opposition to their disgusting campaign of self-glorification and world domination, the greasy eminences behind the invasion of Iraq and the stalled somewhat crusade to do to Iran what was done to Iraq are shaking down the world economy, most especially and significantly the US economy segment of the world economy. To weaken their enemies, and pre-emptively weaken their potential enemies. 
That's you, us. 
Who has time and energy to freak about the chronic festering of Iraq and the over 2 trillion dollars it's consuming out of the US treasury, when the money's vanishing - all the money - threatening to vanish down the perspective tracks toward infinity.
I am reaching, but I'm not irritable.
This is also transferring great quantities of wealth, from faceless corporations to faceless individuals. Not a negligible matter all by itself. And if you don't go along with the program somehow no one at all will come and take away without even existing in order to be able to do that but still existing enough like the wind or a wave in the ocean to do that and will take away the whole economy, or at least the economy you know and have come to love, to love as if it were your home, or the street in front of your home.
Since it's all made up numbers and abstract ideas what difference does that make?
You can still grow corn and potatoes, you can still mend shoes, you can still take in laundry and deliver milk and bake bread and clean other people's houses and build other people's houses and fences, and raise and sell rabbits and pigs, or make and sell mandolins and ukeleles, and you don't need money to do any of that, and people have done that without any money having to change hands at all before. So who cares?
You do because you were born harnessed to the wheel.
I am irritable.
You were born in harness and it's all you know.
And the reins and traces of that harness go right back to the greasy motherfuckers taking the whole thing down to raw fear and the breaking line between heroic self-sacrifice and craven obedience.
Bush says economy will be fine in long run


It's presented as an addiction to oil but it isn't that, not really. It's an addiction to the sensation of sitting on your ass and flying down the road at 80 miles an hour surrounded by a ton or two of steel armor. That's the high, how the addiction starts.
People get high driving their cars, it's a powerful rush, but they do it all the time so they don't notice it, usually. Like with heroin, which starts with feeling very very good, then becomes something that the body says it needs, has to have, and kind of does, but not really.
We aren't addicted to oil so much as that feeling. But getting to that, getting people to see that's what it is runs into the same obstacles and barriers you run into when you try to get to the bottom of the smoking epidemic that hung like a fog over the 20th century.
People aren't smoking nearly so much now, it's been successfully marginalized, but the reason they stopped is they were subjected to the same mind control techniques and technologies that got them or their parents and grandparents smoking to begin with. And getting that talked about, that that power is still there and still operating in all kinds of aspects of our lives, including political decisions, runs into a big taboo. An artificial one that protects the machinery - trivialized as "advertising" but actually a complex and powerful set of brainwashing tools - and conceals the men who run it to their own ends in their own interests, too often to the detriment of everyone and everything else. Sort of like the banking system.
Getting people to stop smoking, pretty much an unqualified good thing, without getting people to consider what made it so powerfully attractive and socially central in the first place, is a compromise - doing what you can with what you have.
Talking about oil, even as an addiction, without talking about the powerful high it delivers, is another compromise.


Calling McCain an undisciplined spoiled brat as Tim Dickinson does here,while accurate and an important feature of his character and a matter of concern regarding his bid for the Presidency,misses the point. The thing about undisciplined spoiled brats like GW Bush and McCain is they get in trouble. They get in trouble but they're in positions by fact of birth that give them power.
They get in trouble, and anybody that gets the goods on them about that trouble has access to that power.
link via improprieties


It was amazing how long it took her to unstick that loose bang that slipped down inside her glasses and got stuck on her eyelash, and kept flickering up and down when she blinked.
I don't think that said anything about her as a person though.
Not like that body-check at the beginning.
They walk out and she says quickly, "You don't mind if I call you Joe, do you?" And he says something like of course not then there's an intense pause where she's supposed to say "Please call me Sarah." Or something like that, only she doesn't. And he's left hanging, looking a little shocked. Then it's over.
Only she never does, call him Joe.
If it's about Vice President MILF then she won.
If it's about global warming - if it's not anthropogenic, which means man-made, which, she says, it isn't, then what's causing it?
There was this look on her face when he said it is, and repeated it, that it is man-made. Firm, confident, tight-mouthed. She knows what's causing it, and it's not us.
That was the scariest moment for me. That and when she purred how glad she was they both love Israel.
That's from I think singing Christmas carols and hearing in Sunday school all those Bible stories. That's the Israel she loves, and it's all mixed in with the strength she gets from her religion, and the comfort and excitement she felt as a child at Christmas time.
Certainly she's not thinking of the Israel that's been sending soldiers and agents into Colombia and training death squads, like they were doing in El Salvador back in the 80's. Not the Israel that's setting up Mossad outposts down in Trinidad and Tobago, just off the coast of Venezuela. Certainly not the Israel whose soldiers laugh when they shoot down Palestinian kids in the Occupied Territories.
She doesn't know anything about that Israel, doesn't want to, doesn't have to. It's real, that Israel, but it has nothing to do with her religion, or her career in politics.


Bush implores
Bush pleads
Bush begs


Canards of The Children of Zion:

originally written, but not posted, 18.Oct.07
The Mearsheimer-Walt-Carter phenomenon comes at a time when conspiracy theories about Jews are resurging around the world. According to Gallup, millions believe that Jews or Israel, not Osama bin Laden, were responsible for the 9/11 attacks. Holocaust denial in many parts of the Arab and Muslim world is finding its way with increasing frequency into articles and political statements. Most notable are statements by Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who not only questioned the reality of the Holocaust, but then followed up by organizing a conference of Holocaust deniers who came to Tehran to give further legitimacy to this insidious lie.

Images right out of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the infamous anti-Semitic forgery, appear on television and in newspaper cartoons in a number of Arab states. And even in Western Europe, high percentages of the population believe that Jews are more loyal to Israel than to the country in which they live and are citizens. They also believe that Jews have too much influence in politics and business.
Abraham H. Foxman
Moran additionally drew sharp criticism from Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), the majority leader. Moran "adopted a canard that is absolutely not true, that the Jewish community controls the press, media, government and other institutions," Hoyer said in an impromptu press conference. "It has been used by those who are anti-Semitic for a very long period of time. They are inaccurate, wrong and unfortunate."
JTA 20.Sep.07
"One of the most widely distributed anti-Semitic tracts in history is The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a book of canards authored in the nineteenth century that portrays Jews as conspiring to seek global dominance. Similarly, American-based racist groups in this last century have frequently leveled accusations against Jews for controlling both banks and public officials."
Sidney Schwarz
In closing, writing in a strictly personal capacity, I am repelled by Lamb’s assertion that “70 percent of [Human Rights Watch’s] budget [is] estimated to be provided by Jewish contributors.” Make no mistake: this unsourced and factually untrue statement is anti-Semitic and not anti-Zionist. It perpetuates the time-worn canard that all Jews share a political agenda – Israel right or wrong – and that with their lucre they pull the strings behind the scenes.
Eric Goldstein
Today, we have senators falling over themselves not only to signal their respect for Michael Mukasey, the president's pick for attorney general, but also to thank him for deigning to take the job. Pretty much all they need to make sure of today is that Mukasey is not Alberto Gonzales. Check.
Emily Bazelon
Michael Bernard Mukasey is an American lawyer who, for 18 years, served as a judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, six of those years as Chief Judge. On September 17, 2007, President George W. Bush nominated Mukasey to serve as the 81st Attorney General of the United States, succeeding Alberto Gonzales.
Mukasey has received several awards, most notably the Learned Hand Medal of the Federal Bar Council.
Michael Mukasey's father was born near Baranavichy in the Russian Empire (modern-day Belarus) and emigrated to the US during the First World War.
Mukasey graduated in 1959 from the Ramaz School, a Modern Orthodox Jewish prep school in Manhattan.
Chertoff was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey, the son of Rabbi Gershon Baruch Chertoff, the former leader of the B'nai Israel Congregation in Elizabeth, and El Al flight attendant Livia Chertoff (née Eisen). His paternal grandfather, Rabbi Paul Chertoff, emigrated from Russia. His grandfather was a noted Talmudic scholar.
Bernanke was born in Augusta, Georgia and grew up in Dillon, South Carolina as the eldest of three children, with a younger brother and sister. His father Philip was a pharmacist and part-time theater manager, and his mother Edna was originally a schoolteacher. They were one of the few Jewish families in the area, attending a local synagogue called Ohav Shalom; as a child, Bernanke learned Hebrew from his maternal grandfather Jonas, who was a professional Torah reader and Hebrew teacher.

Blog Archive