Friday, November 30, 2007

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Jonathan Turley





State Secrets Privilege is the coverup(legal) of all coverups. The ability of this corrupt-ass administration to hide behind this and actually attempt to modify it to make it even more of a shield is another way creeping fascism is attempting to replace our Democracy.

These people are like a disease infesting every corner of our government to further their cause using this type of legal loophole for aid that infestation.

Needless to say they must be stopped, our very future and that of our children is at stake in an evil game for personal gain. Jonathan is a no nonsense guy well versed in what they are up to and the law.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Naomi Wolf





This vid is 47 minutes long and basically re-affirms the 10 points of fascism past and present. Probably old hat for most of you and very accurate describing the results of and the establishment of evil fascism.

Humanity has not advanced very much in the political sense have we. The same agonizing stuff just keeps happening over and over resulting in massive loss of rights and lives.

I believe Naomi is the 'canary in the coal mine' along with many others all basically saying the same thing, fascism has reared it's ugly head once again and as such we must gather up to defeat it once and for all. Priority one is a 'Humans Rights' doctrine establishing freedom for all humanity, not just the 'select few'.

Neo-Fascism is Neo-conservative is Nazi-esque Totalitarian/Authoritarian rule and here in the USA today whether people acknowledge it or not.

It needs to go, once and for all

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Simpsons





Just in case some of you missed the episode Sunday. You know you have 'made it' when you are picked to be on TeeVee in a Simpsons episode. OOOO boy!

Let's see what else is there to rant about, OH I know, stupid Iranians are supposedly building missiles that could hit Israel or unmentioned US bases in the region.
Now correct me if I am wrong here but isn't that a wee bit provocative? If one say had the rumor flying about that a certain country would feel the wrath of the FSA (Fascist States of America) for building nukes when told not to, would the best avenue to reduce tension be to declare they have missiles to bomb stuff on their own?
Not exactly diplomacy is it? Basically gives the FSA carte` blanch to start running the Buffs (B-52's) across the countryside in an effort to reign in a renegade country by returning them to the second century, similar to Iraq.

Time to quit being the Worlds' bully, and negotiate peace with all the Middle Eastern countries.

OOPS! I forgot, theres no money in peace is there?

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Monday, November 26, 2007

Getting Away With Murder?


In the history of the American Republic, perhaps no political family has been more protected from scandal than the Bushes.

When the Bushes are involved in dirty deals or even criminal activity, standards of evidence change. Instead of proof "beyond a reasonable doubt" that would lock up an average citizen, the evidence must be perfect.

If there's any doubt at all, the Bushes must be presumed innocent. Even when their guilt is obvious to anyone with an ounce of common sense, it's their accusers and those who dare investigate who get the worst of it. Their motives are challenged and their own shortcomings are cast in the harshest possible light.

For decades -- arguably going back generations -- the Bushes have been protected by their unique position straddling two centers of national power, the family's blueblood Eastern Establishment ties and the Texas oil crowd with strong links to the Republican Right. [For details on this family phenomenon, see Robert Parry's Secrecy & Privilege.]

This reality was underscored again by how major news outlets and the right-wing press reacted to a new piece of evidence implicating George W. Bush in a criminal cover-up in the "Plame-gate" scandal.

Though the evidence is now overwhelming that President Bush was part of a White House cabal that leaked Valerie Plame Wilson's identity as a covert CIA officer and then covered up the facts, major newspapers, such as the New York Times and the Washington Post, continue to pooh-pooh this extraordinary scandal.

@ ALTERNET

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One million dead Iraqi's and over 3000 dead troops cannot be wrong, the Bush crime family continues to destroy others while raking in millions.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Buzzard Bait


Publicity-Shy Giuliani Backer Is Thrust Into Spotlight
By MICHAEL COOPER and LESLIE WAYNE

Paul E. Singer is the founding partner of one of the oldest hedge funds around. And while he has become a major donor to Republican and conservative causes in recent years, he has largely managed to stay out of the limelight, even avoiding having his picture appear in newspapers.

But this year Mr. Singer became one of the biggest supporters of Rudolph W. Giuliani’s presidential campaign, making his jet available to Mr. Giuliani, while Mr. Singer and workers at his companies have donated $200,000 to the campaign. And he became the largest individual backer of a California ballot initiative that many Democrats believe could sink their chances of winning the presidency.

Suddenly, the normally low-profile Mr. Singer, a New Yorker, found himself singled out by Democrats intent on beating back the California effort before it gained any steam.

Howard Dean, the chairman of the Democratic Party, questioned “Paul Singer’s involvement in this dirty trick aimed at stealing the White House.” A group of Democrats filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission charging that Mr. Singer had been acting on behalf of Mr. Giuliani in his efforts to change the California law — which Mr. Singer and the campaign deny. And the Democratic National Committee drew attention to the part of Mr. Singer’s business that involves buying the debt of poor countries at a discount and then seeking repayment in full — prompting an article in The Times of London labeling his firm, Elliott Associates, a “vulture fund.”

The vitriol directed at Mr. Singer reflects the intense passions being stirred by efforts to change the California law, which could alter the nation’s electoral map to favor Republicans and Mr. Giuliani, should he emerge as the party’s candidate. While Mr. Singer is now distancing himself from the effort, another Giuliani fund-raiser has since taken up the cause.

Mr. Singer, 63, who was surprised to be photographed for this article on a Manhattan street, said in an e-mail interview that he had contributed to the California initiative on his own, and that he was not acting on behalf of the Giuliani campaign. He noted that buying what he called “sovereign distressed debt” represented only a tiny fraction of the $9 billion that is under management by his funds, but defended his decision to press for repayment, saying that countries must meet their obligations.

@ NYT

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Vulture Fund Capitalists. Sounds exactly like cleaning up "sovereign distressed debt" amounts to picking financial road kill off the highway of the financial world.

Once laden with the squeezings, some feel the need to throw the cash around to political causes usually involving supporting more of the same including an attempted hijacking of California election law to favor fellow buzzards like Gouliani.

Friends, these people are the enemy of Democracy with their one way money machinations. They have no interest whatsoever in you or I just how much foreign debtor money can be put to THEIR use for their little vulture adventures, to parlay into more money.

Look at his picture, is this a happy man? Has that buzzard look going.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Reasonable Treason?


When Bush administration officials I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Karl Rove, Richard Armitage and Ari Fleischer betrayed Valerie Plame Wilson's identity as a covert CIA operations officer, they fell into the category of "the most insidious of traitors." Now we learn from the president's former press secretary, Scott McClellan, that the president himself "was involved" in sending him out to lie to the American public about the betrayal. If his direction to McClellan was deliberate and knowing, then the president was party to a conspiracy by senior administration officials to defraud the public. If that isn't a high crime and misdemeanor then we don't know what is. And if the president was merely an unwitting accomplice, then who lied to him? What is he doing to punish the person who misled the president to abuse his office? And why is that person still working in the executive branch? Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald made clear his suspicions about the culprit when he said "a cloud remains over the office of the vice president." But we may never know exactly what happened because President Bush thwarted justice and guaranteed the success of the cover-up when he commuted Scooter Libby's felony sentence on four counts of lying, perjury and obstruction of justice.

With the exception of MSNBC's Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews, and the intrepid David Shuster, the mainstream media would have you believe that McClellan's revelation is old news. "Now back to Aruba and the two-year old disappearance of a blond teenager." But treason is not old news. The Washington press corps, whose pretension is to report and interpret events objectively, has been compromised in this matter as evidence presented in the courtroom demonstrated. Prominent journalists acted as witting agents of Rove, Libby and Armitage and covered up this serious breach of U.S. national security rather than doing their duty as journalists to report it to the public.

@ HUFFPO
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Yes they are pissed and with good reason. The same administration that ran roughshod over their lives is the same administration doing the same to America.

For corporate gain all else will be forsaken, the relentless pursuit of profit will trump all righteous attempts at returning justice and fair play to America.

The worst part? So far no one has attempted to stop the rampant profit takers.

It's now or never as they say, maybe Scotty Mac can redeem himself......

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Friday, November 23, 2007

NUTZO Friday






I would not shop there if it was the last store in town and I was out of underwear.

What is with the rush to spend hard earned money on stuff from a container ship?

This nothing more than people gone mad with the herd mentality, trampling, kicking and stumbling through the just opened doors to get at stuff they don't need in the first place. Like trained monkeys, they shop on command, weird.

You know how tough it is trampling with a belly full of turkey and stuffing? I'm sure when it is all over today children will be found among the uprooted piles of consumer items lost amongst the shelves of toys and trinkets, abandoned in the feeding frenzy to get the $50 TeeVees and $25 Ipods (for future mental masturbation while ignoring the gross reality of war) and all the other must have things that will in 6 months get tossed in a landfill because they no longer work.

Tis the season to lose all reason.

Spend it till ya drop, it's the American way!

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

T-Day Thanks







Thanks for gas that does not exceed $5 a gallon.

Thanks for not lighting off any nukes in the USA.

Thanks for not locking people up in KBR detention centers.

Thanks for not attacking Iran.

Thanks for resigning, Gonzo.

Thanks for all the people that sacrifice daily to provide top flight health care for the poor.

Thanks for the organizations that feed and care for the homeless in America daily.

Thanks for the hard working farmers that raise our food.

Thanks for all the troops that put their lives on the line despite the war being illegal.

Thanks for all of our fellow Americans that hate this administration and will vote accordingly.

Thanks for all my fellow bloggers who stick with this little blog through it all.

THANKS FOLKS!!! HOPE YOU HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY!!!

Now lets eat!

Coffee in the corner, turkey, ham and all the fixins on the side, dig in!!
save room for some pumpkin pie for desert.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Flying Books


NEW YORK To no one's surprise in a world where top White House aides with any president eventually write a book about it, former Press Secretary Scott McClellan will be coming out with his volume in April. It's called "What Happened" and its publisher, Public Affairs, at its Web site now carries this brief excerpt -- which set off a media firestorm on Tuesday.

It also led to a call for a full probe by a top U.S. senator and condemnation from former CIA agent Valerie Plame.

E&P was first mainstream news outlet to report on Monday night that the McClellan excerpt reads:

"The most powerful leader in the world had called upon me to speak on his behalf and help restore credibility he lost amid the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. So I stood at the White house briefing room podium in front of the glare of the klieg lights for the better part of two weeks and publicly exonerated two of the senior-most aides in the White House: Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

"There was one problem. It was not true.

"I had unknowingly passed along false information. And five of the highest ranking officials in the administration "were involved in my doing so: Rove, Libby, the vice President, the President's chief of staff, and the president himself."

AP reported this afternoon: "White House press secretary Dana Perino said it wasn't clear what McClellan meant in the excerpt and she had no immediate comment. McClellan turned down interview requests Tuesday."

Later Tuesday, Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Ct.) , who is running for president, stated, "Today's revelations by Mr. McClellan are very disturbing and raise several important questions that need to be answered. If in fact the President of the United of States knowingly instructed his chief spokesman to mislead the American people, there can be no more fundamental betrayal of the public trust.

@ Editor&Publisher

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Oh yea, if he is not already rich, he will be after the books 'fly' off the shelves won't he.

Funny how the accessories to this Administrations crimes can flaunt crap in the media and get praised for it while upholders of 'Free Speech' get tasered for speaking up against the crimes.

Have we become so enamored with the rich and infamous that a criminal terrorist organization like the prez and prez of vice and their accomplices can do whatever they please because it makes for a good show?

Time for the self involved spoiled rotten people in this country to get off their Ipods and cell phones and watch everything their parents and grandparents fought for go right down the drain. And when it is all gone and they wonder why they have to live in the street and beg for food and water that THEY could have prevented their own demise.

If only they would have engaged and paid attention and did their duty as American citizens.

We have been snookered by the worst this country has to offer while we were asleep at the wheel, and the crooks are getting richer while the rest of us suffer.

WHY?

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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Global Drying


America's water war
The southeastern United States is drying up and the Bush administration and FEMA don't want to consider what happens if a major city's faucets run dry.

By Tom Engelhardt

Nov. 19, 2007 | Georgia's on my mind. Atlanta, Ga. It's a city in trouble in a state in trouble in a region in trouble. Water trouble. Trouble big enough that the state government's moving fast. Just this week, backed up by a choir singing "Amazing Grace," accompanied by three Protestant ministers, and 20 demonstrators from the Atlanta Freethought Society, Georgia's Baptist Gov. Sonny Perdue led a crowd of hundreds in prayers for rain. "We've come together here," he said, "simply for one reason and one reason only: to very reverently and respectfully pray up a storm." It seems, however, that the Almighty -- He "who can and will make a difference" -- was otherwise occupied and the regional drought continued to threaten Atlanta, a metropolis of 5 million people (and growing fast), with the possibility that it might run out of water in as little as 80 days or as much as a year, if the rains don't come.

Here's a little summary of the situation today: "Water rationing has hit the capital. Car washing and lawn watering are prohibited within city limits. Harvests in the region have dropped by 15-30%. By the end of summer, local reservoirs and dams were holding 5% of their capacity."

Oops, that's not Atlanta, or even the southeastern U.S. That's Ankara, Turkey, hit by a fierce drought and high temperatures that also have had southern and southwestern Europe in their grip.

Sorry, let's try that again. Imagine this scenario: "Over the last decade, 15-20% decreases in precipitation have been recorded. These water losses have been accompanied by record temperatures and increasing wildfires in areas where populations have been growing rapidly. A fierce drought has settled in -- of the hundred-year variety. Lawns can be watered but just for a few hours a day (and only by bucket); four-minute showers are the max allowed. Car washes are gone, though you can clean absolutely essential car windows and mirrors by hand."

Sound familiar? As it happens, that's not the American Southeast either; that's a description of what's come to be called "The Big Dry" -- the unprecedented drought that has swept huge parts of Australia, the worst in at least a century on an already notoriously dry continent, but also part of the world's breadbasket, where crops are now failing regularly and farms closing down.

In fact, on my way along the parched path toward Atlanta, Ga., I found myself taking any number of drought-stricken detours. There's Moldova. (If you're like me, odds are you don't even know where that small, former Soviet republic falls on a map.) Like much of southern Europe, it experienced baking temperatures this summer, exceptionally low precipitation, sometimes far less than 50 percent of expected rainfall, failing crops and farms, and spreading wildfires. (The same was true, to one degree or another, of Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, and -- with its 100-year record scorching of biblical proportions -- Greece which lost 10 percent of its forest cover in a month-long fiery apocalypse, leaving "large tracts of countryside …. at risk of depopulation.")

Or how about Morocco, across the Mediterranean, which experienced 50 percent less rainfall than normal? Or the Canary Islands, those Spanish vacation spots in the Atlantic Ocean known to millions of visitors for their year-around mild climate, which, this summer, morphed into 104 degree days, strong winds, and fierce wildfires. Eighty-six thousand acres were burnt to a crisp, engulfing some of the islands in flames and smoke that drove out thousands of tourists?

Or what about Mexico's Tehuacán Valley, where, thousands of years ago, corn was first domesticated as an agricultural crop. Even today, asking for "un Tehuacán" in a restaurant in Mexico still means getting the best bottled mineral water in the country. Unfortunately, the area hasn't had a good rain since 2003, and the ensuing drought conditions have made subsistence farming next to impossible, sending desperate locals northward and across the border as illegal immigrants -- some into Southern California, itself just swept by monstrous Santa Ana-driven wildfires, fanned by prolonged drought conditions and fed tinder by new communities built deep into the wild lands where the fires gestate. And Tehuacán is but one disaster zone in a growing Mexican catastrophe. As Mike Davis has written, "Abandoned ranchitos and near-ghost towns throughout Coahuila, Chihuahua and Sonora testify to the relentless succession of dry years -- beginning in the 1980s but assuming truly catastrophic intensity in the late 1990s -- that has pushed hundreds of thousands of poor rural people toward the sweatshops of Ciudad Juárez and the barrios of Los Angeles."

According to the How Dry I Am Chart of "livability expert" Bert Sperling, four cities in Southern California, not parched Atlanta, top the national drought ratings: Los Angeles, San Diego, Oxnard and Riverside. In addition, Pasadena has had the dubious honor, through September, of experiencing its driest year in history.

"Resource wars" are things that happen elsewhere. We don't usually think of our country as water poor or imagine that "resource wars" might be applied as a description to various state and local governments in the Southwest, Southeast or upper Midwest now fighting tooth and nail for previously shared water. And yet, "war" may not be a bad metaphor for what's on the horizon. According to the National Climate Data Center, federal officials have declared 43 percent of the contiguous U.S. to be in "moderate to extreme drought." Already, Sonny Perdue of Georgia is embroiled in an ever more bitter conflict with the governors of Florida and Alabama, as well as the Army Corps of Engineers, over the flow of water into and out of the Atlanta area.

He's hardly alone. After all, the Southwest is in the grips of what, according to Davis, some climatologists are terming a "'mega-drought,' even the 'worst in 500 years.'" More shockingly, he writes, such conditions may actually represent the region's new "normal weather." The upper Midwest is also in rainfall-shortage mode, with water levels at all the Great Lakes dropping unnervingly. The water level of Lake Superior, for instance, has fallen to the "lowest point on record for this time of year." (Notice, by the way, how many "records" are being set nationally and globally in these drought years; how many places are already beginning to push beyond history, which means beyond any reference point we have.)

And then there's the Southeast, 26 percent of which, according to the National Weather Service, is in a state of "exceptional" drought, its most extreme category, and 78 percent of which is "drought-affected." We're talking here about a region normally considered rich in water resources setting a bevy of records for dryness. It has been the driest year on record for North Carolina and Tennessee, for instance, while 18 months of blue skies have led Georgia to break every historical record, whether measured by "the percentage of moisture in the soil, the flow rate of rivers, [or] inches of rain."

Atlanta is hardly the only city or town in the region with a dwindling water supply. According to David Bracken of Raleigh's News & Observer, "17 North Carolina water systems, including Raleigh and Durham, have 100 or fewer days of water supply remaining before they reach the dregs." Rock Spring, S.C., "has been without water for a month. Farmers are hauling water by pickup truck to keep their cattle alive." The same is true for the tiny town of Orme, Tenn., where the mayor turns on the water for only three hours a day. And then, there's Atlanta, its metropolitan area "watered" mainly by a 1950s man-made reservoir, Lake Lanier, which, in dramatic photos, is turning into baked mud. Already with a population of 5 million and known for its uncontrolled growth (as well as lack of water planning), the city is expected to house another 2 million inhabitants by 2030. And yet, depending on which article you read, Atlanta will essentially run out of water by New Year's eve, in 80 days, in 120 days, or, according to the Army Corps of Engineers -- which seems to find this reassuring -- in 375 days, if the drought continues (as it may well do).

OK, so let's try again: "Across the region, fountains sit 'bone dry'; in small towns, 'full-soak' baptisms have been stopped; car washes and laundromats are cutting hours or shutting down. Golf courses have resorted to watering only tees and greens. Campfires, stoves, and grills are banned in some national parks. The boats have left Lake Lanier and the metal detectors have arrived."

This is the verdant southeastern United States, which, thanks in part to a developing La Niña effect in the Pacific Ocean, now faces the likelihood of a drier than ever winter. And, to put this in context, keep in mind that 2007 "to date has been the warmest on record for land [and] … the seventh warmest year so far over the oceans, working out to the fourth warmest overall worldwide." Oh, and up in the Arctic sea, the ice pack reached its lowest level this September since satellite measurements were begun in 1979.

And then, there's that question that has been nagging at me ever since this story first caught my attention in early October as it headed out of the regional press and slowly made its way toward the top of the nightly TV news and the front pages of national newspapers; it's the question I've been waiting patiently for some environmental reporter(s) somewhere in the mainstream media to address; the question that seems to me so obvious I find it hard to believe everyone isn't thinking about it; the one you would automatically want to have answered -- or at least gnawed on by thoughtful, expert reporters and knowledgeable pundits. Every day for the last month or more I've waited, as each piece on Atlanta ends at more or less the same point -- with the dire possibility that the city's water will soon be gone -- as though hitting a brick wall.

Not that there hasn't been some fine reportage -- on the extremity of the situation, the overbuilding and overpopulating of the metropolitan region, the utter heedlessness that went with it, and the resource wars that have since engulfed it. Still, I've Googled around, read scores of pieces on the subject, and they all -- even the one whose first paragraph asked, "What if Atlanta's faucets really do go dry?" -- seem to end just where my question begins. It's as if, in each piece, the reporter had reached the edge of some precipice down which no one cares to look, lest we all go over.

Based on the record of the last seven years, we can take it for granted that the Bush administration hasn't the slightest desire to glance down; that no one in FEMA who matters has given the situation the thought it deserves; and that, on this subject, as on so many others, top administration officials are just hoping to make it to January 2009 without too many more scar marks. But, if not the federal government, shouldn't somebody be asking? Shouldn't somebody check out what's actually down there?

So let me ask it this way: And then?

And then what exactly can we expect? If the southeastern drought is already off the charts in Georgia, then, whether it's 80 days or 800 days, isn't there a possibility that Atlanta may one day in the not-so-distant future be without water? And what then?

OK, they're trucking water into waterless Orme, Tenn., but the town's mayor, Tony Reames, put the matter well, worrying about Atlanta. "We can survive. We're 145 people, but you've got 4.5 million there. What are they going to do?"

What indeed? Has water ever been trucked in to so many people before? And what about industry, including, in the case of Atlanta, Coca-Cola, which is, after all, a business based on water? What about restaurants that need to wash their plates or doctors in hospitals who need to wash their hands?

Let's face it, with water, you're down to the basics. And if, as some say, we've passed the point not of "peak oil," but of "peak water" (and cheap water) on significant parts of the planet ... well, what then?

I mean, I'm hardly an expert on this, but what exactly are we talking about here? Someday in the reasonably near future could Atlanta, or Phoenix, which in winter 2005-06, went 143 days without a bit of rain, or Las Vegas become a Katrina minus the storm? Are we talking here about a new trail of tears? What exactly would happen to the poor of Atlanta? To Atlanta itself?

Certainly, you've seen the articles about what global warming might do in the future to fragile or low-lying areas of the world. Such pieces usually mention the possibility of enormous migrations of the poor and desperate. But we don't usually think about that in the "homeland." Maybe we should.

Or maybe, for all I know, if the drought continues, parts of the region will burn to a frizzle first, Ã la parts of Southern California, before they can even experience the complete loss of water? Will we have hundred-year fire records in the South, without a Santa Ana wind in sight? And what then?

OK, excuse a terrible, even tasteless, sports analogy, but think of this as a major bowl game, and they've sent one of the water boys -- me -- to man the press booth. I mean, please. Why am I the one asking this? Where's the media's first team?

In my own admittedly limited search of the mainstream, I found only one vivid, thoughtful recent piece on this subject: "The Future Is Drying Up," by Jon Gertner, written for the New York Times Magazine. It focused on the southwestern drought and began to explore some of the "and thens," as in this brief passage on Colorado in which Gertner quotes Roger Pulwarty, a "highly regarded climatologist" at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: "The worst outcome ... would be mass migrations out of the region, along with bitter interstate court battles over the dwindling water supplies. But well before that, if too much water is siphoned from agriculture, farm towns and ranch towns will wither. Meanwhile, Colorado's largest industry, tourism, might collapse if river flows became a trickle during summertime."

Mass migrations, exfiltrations ... Stop a sec and take in that possibility and what exactly it might mean. After all, we do have some small idea, having, in recent years, lost one American city, New Orleans, at least temporarily.

Or consider another "and then" prediction: What if the prolonged drought in the Southwest turns out, as Mike Davis wrote in the Nation magazine, to be "on the scale of the medieval catastrophes that contributed to the notorious collapse of the complex Anasazi societies at Chaco Canyon and Mesa Verde during the twelfth century"?

What if, indeed.

I'm not simply being apocalyptic here. I'm just asking. It's not even that I expect answers. I'd just like to see a crew of folks with the necessary skills explore the "and then" question for the rest of us. Try to connect a few dots, or tell us if they don't connect, or just explain where the dots really are.

OK, since I'm griping on the subject, let me toss in another complaint. As this piece has indicated, the Southeastern drought, unlike the famed cheese of childhood song, does not exactly stand alone. Such conditions, often involving record or near record temperatures, and record or near record wildfires, can be observed at numerous places across the planet. So why is it that, except at relatively obscure Web sites, you can hardly find a mainstream piece that mentions more than one drought at a time?

An honorable exception would be a recent Seattle Times column by Neal Peirce that brought together the Southwestern and Southeastern droughts, as well as the Western "flame zone," where "mega-fires" are increasingly the norm, in the context of global warming, in order to consider our seemingly willful "myopia about the future."

But you'd be hard-pressed to find many pieces in our major newspapers (or on the TV news) that put all (or even a number) of the extreme drought spots on the global map together in order to ask a simple question (even if its answer may prove complex indeed): Do they have anything in common? And if so, what? And if so, what then?

To find even tentative answers to such questions you have to leave the mainstream. Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!, for example, interviewed paleontologist and author of "The Weather Makers: The History and Future Impact of Climate Change" Tim Flannery recently on the topic of a "world on fire." Flannery offered the following observation:

"It's not just the Southeast of the United States. Europe has had its great droughts and water shortages. Australia is in the grip of a drought that's almost unbelievable in its ferocity. Again, this is a global picture. We're just getting much less usable water than we did a decade or two or three decades ago. It's a sort of thing again that the climate models are predicting. In terms of the floods, again we see the same thing. You know, a warmer atmosphere is just a more energetic atmosphere. So if you ask me about a single flood event or a single fire event, it's really hard to make the connection, but take the bigger picture and you can see very clearly what's happening."

I know answers to the "and then" question are not easy or necessarily simple. But if drought -- or call it "desertification" -- becomes more widespread, more common in heavily populated parts of the globe already bursting at the seams (and with more people arriving daily), if whole regions no longer have the necessary water, how many trails of tears, how many of those mass migrations or civilizational collapses are possible? How much burning and suffering and misery are we likely to experience? And what then?

These are questions I can't answer; that the Bush administration is guaranteed to be desperately unwilling and unprepared to face; and that, as yet, the media has largely refused to consider in a serious way. And if the media can't face this and begin to connect some dots, why shouldn't Americans be in denial, too?

It's not that no one is thinking about, or doing work on, drought. I know that scientists have been asking the "and then" questions (or perhaps far more relevant ones that I can't even formulate); that somewhere people have been exploring, studying, writing about them. But how am I to find out?

Of course, all of us can wander the Internet; we can visit the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which has just set up a new Web site to help encourage drought coverage; we can drop in at blogs like RealClimate.org and ClimateProgress.org, which make a habit of keeping up with, or ahead of, such stories; or even, for instance, the Georgia Drought Web site of the University of Georgia's College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences; or we can keep an eye on a new organization of journalists (well covered recently on the NPR show "On the Media"), Circle of Blue, who are planning to concentrate on water issues. But, believe me, even when you get to some of these sites, you may find yourself in an unknown landscape with no obvious water holes in view and no guides to lead you there.

In the meantime, there may be no trail of tears out of Atlanta; there may even be rain in the city's near future for all any of us know; but it's clear enough that, globally and possibly nationally, tragedy awaits. It's time to call in the first team to ask some questions.

Honestly, I don't demand answers. Just a little investigation, some thought, and a glimpse or two over that precipice as the world turns ... and bakes and burns.

Thanks Micki!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Trolls-O-Plenty


The State Department, departing from traditional public diplomacy techniques, has what it calls a three-person, "digital outreach team" posting entries in Arabic on "influential" Arabic blogs to challenge misrepresentations of the United States and promote moderate views among Islamic youths in the hopes of steering them from terrorism.

The department's bloggers "speak the language and idiom of the region, know the culture reference points and are often able to converse informally and frankly, rather than adopt the usually more formal persona of a U.S. government spokesperson," Duncan MacInnes, of State's Bureau of International Information Programs, told the House Armed Services subcommittee on terrorism and unconventional threats on Thursday.

"Because blogging tends to be a very informal, chatty way of working," MacInnes said, "it is actually very dangerous to blog." So State has a senior experienced officer, who served in Iraq, acting as supervisor and discussing each posting before it goes up. "We do not make policy," MacInnes added.

The State Department team's approach is to join a blog's conversation, often when it turns to the motivation for U.S. policy toward Iraq, and when others are claiming that the U.S. occupation is meant to help Israel or to secure oil. "Our job is to address that motivation issue and show them that that's not the motivation," MacInnes said.

"You can't just say, 'Well, here's our policy,' and drop it into the blog. You have to have what I call a bridge," MacInnes said. He then described using a sporting or current event or even poetry that would "allow one to get to be in a conversational mode with people."

Even though the State Department employees were not going into hard-core terrorist sites, the worry, MacInnes said, was that after identifying themselves and using their own names, "we would be, in the parlance of the Internet, 'flamed' when we come on" -- meaning their entries would be subjected to intense attacks.


@ WAPO
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Coming to a blog near you, they have been practicing blog warfare, spying and trolling like the slimy little trolls usually do and we have witnessed on more than one occasion on the old Cornblog. Now they are going international with their pain in the ass program.

The State Department, meddling in everyones business, quite a use for your tax dollars, no wonder America is going broke.

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Sunday, November 18, 2007

Sunny Sunday

Sunrise 11/17/07 Auburn, CA



November 18, 2007

Patients Without Borders

Long before the dentists and the doctors got there, before the nurses, the hygienists and X-ray techs came, before anyone had flicked on the portable mammography unit or sterilized the day’s first set of surgical instruments, the people who needed them showed up to wait. It was 3 a.m. at the Wise County Fairgrounds in Virginia — Friday, July 20, 2007 — the start of a rainy Appalachian morning. Outside the gates, people lay in their trucks or in tents pitched along the grassy parking lot, waiting for their chance to have their medical needs treated at no charge — part of an annual three-day “expedition” led by a volunteer medical relief corps called Remote Area Medical.

The group, most often referred to as RAM, has sent health expeditions to countries like Guyana, India, Tanzania and Haiti, but increasingly its work is in the United States, where 47 million people — more than 15 percent of the population — live without health insurance. Residents of remote rural areas are less likely than their urban and suburban counterparts to have health insurance and more likely to be in fair or poor health. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, nearly half of all adults in rural America are living with at least one chronic condition. Other research has found that in these areas, where hospitals and primary-care providers are in short supply, rates of arthritis, hypertension, heart ailments, diabetes and major depression are higher than in urban areas.

And so each summer, shortly after the Virginia-Kentucky District Fair and Horse Show wraps up at the fairgrounds, members of Virginia Lions Clubs start bleaching the premises, readying them for RAM’s volunteers, who, working in animal stalls and beneath makeshift tents, provide everything from teeth cleaning and free eyeglasses to radiology and minor surgery. The problem, says RAM’s founder, Stan Brock, is always in the numbers, with the patients’ needs far outstripping what his team can supply. In Wise County, when the sun rose and the fairground gates opened at 5:30 on Friday morning, more than 800 people already were waiting in line. Over the next three days, some 2,500 patients would receive care, but at least several hundred, Brock estimates, would be turned away. He adds: “There comes a point where the doctors say: ‘Hey, I gotta go. It’s Sunday evening, and I have to go to work tomorrow.’ ”

Stolen from the NYT.

......................................................................................................................................................................

What is it about healthy taxpayers the politicos do not understand? The IRS is more than willing to collect taxes to pay for war and other unnecessary things, but why not collect taxes to pay for healthcare?

If people knew they would be paying taxes and actually gaining better health in the process, wouldn't that be a good thing for America?

For profit healthcare comes right out of the Nixonian era, when it was established that HMO's could provide care with a profit. To me this is typical repug thinking, make a buck off the backs of the very people that they glean for money while ignoring the fact that sick people are more than 'profit', they are in need of compassion and care instead of objects to be relieved of their hard earned cash and cast aside like empty wrappers.

Thank goodness there are people like the folks in the article willing to step up and help those in need, where would their patients be without them?

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Hooray Harry!



@ROLL CALL

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has decided to keep the chamber in session over the Thanksgiving break to block President Bush from making any unsavory recess appointments while Senators are out of town.

In a statement inserted in the record Friday, the Majority Leader said he will hold the Senate in a series of pro forma or nonvoting sessions to prevent the controversial practice. In the statement, Reid argued that nominations need to get on track, and that Bush has not met the Democrats “halfway” in agreeing to Democratically backed nominees to “important commissions.”

“While an election year looms, significant progress can still be made on nominations,” Reid said. “I am committed to making that progress if the President will meet me halfway.

“But that progress can’t be made if the President seeks controversial recess appointments and fails to make Democratic appointments to important commissions.”
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If the Dems stand firmly against authoritarian rule, we might actually end up with a great country once again. Then on with the business of cleaning up the planet.

Projects-O-Plenty.

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Thursday, November 15, 2007

T(ough) S(hit) A(merica)


Thursday, November 15, 2007
Defense and Security

One Year Later: Have TSA Airport Security Checkpoints Improved?

This morning at 10:00 a.m. the Committee will a examine whether TSA’s airport security checkpoints have improved over the last year. The hearing will review the findings of an investigation conducted by GAO into the effectiveness of airport security checkpoints. Yesterday, a GAO report detailed an undercover investigation that found significant vulnerabilities in airport security.

The following witnesses will testify:

  • Mr. Gregory D. Kutz, Managing Director, Forensic Audits and Special Investigations, Government Accountability Office

accompanied by:

  • Mr. John Cooney, Assistant Director, Forensic Audits and Special Investigations, Government Accountability Office
  • The Honorable Edmund “Kip” Hawley, Administrator, Transportation Security Administration

@ House Oversite.gov

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Airport Screeners Missed Bomb Parts

By EILEEN SULLIVAN – 12 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — Government investigators smuggled liquid explosives and detonators past airport security, exposing a dangerous hole in the nation's ability to keep these forbidden items off of airplanes, according to a report made public Wednesday.

The investigators learned about the components to make an improvised explosive device and an improvised incendiary device on the Internet and purchased the parts at local stores, said the report by the Government Accountability Office. Investigators were able to purchase the components for the two devices for under $150, and they studied the published guidelines for screening to determine how to conceal the prohibited items as they went through checkpoint security.

At the end of the testing, investigators concluded that terrorists could use publicly available information and a few cheaply available supplies to damage an airplane and threaten passenger safety.

"It is possible to bring the components for several IEDs and one IID through TSA checkpoints and onto airline flights without being challenged by transportation security officers," said the GAO, Congress' investigative arm.
@ AP
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Once again the oppressive hand of the government has failed to protect the flying public. The imposition of the draconian search and seizure of shampoo and toiletries because they might contain bomb making juice, has backfired bigtime on the authoritarians. Tsk, tsk, tsk, guess those terror causing young Arab males are not the problem after all, or are they? Wasn't Arabs smuggling stuff onto the flights, was 'Mercans', God fearing folk that pulled a lot of wool over the TSA's eyes this time.

New regulations will be: Everyone must be buck nekid to fly, no carry-ons allowed, bags must be UPS'd to the destination.

Might be tough on the upholstery.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Greg Palast

Hillary’s Musharraf

Mrs. Clinton’s forgotten fling with the Killer of KarachiHillary and Musharraf
by Greg Palast

He was the other man in Hillary’s life. But it’s over now. Or is it?

You’ve seen all those creepy photos of George Bush rubbing up against Pakistan’s President Pervez Musharraf, the two of them grinning and giggling like they’re going to the senior prom. So it’s hard to remember that it was Hillary and Bill who brought Pervez to the dance in the first place.

How that happened, I’ll tell you in a moment.

But first, let’s get our facts straight about the man in the moustache. Musharraf, according to George Bush, The New York Times, NPR and the rest of press puppies is, “our ally in the War on Terror.” That’s like calling Carmine Gambino, “Our ally in the War on Crime.”

Musharraf’s the guy who helped the Taliban take power in Afghanistan in 1996. And, through his ISI, Pakistan’s own KGB, he is still giving the Taliban secret protection. And this is the same Musharraf who let Khalid Sheik Muhammed, Osama’s operations chief for the SeptemberBush and Musharraf 11 attack, hang out in Quetta, Pakistan, in the open, until Khalid embarrassed his host by giving a boastful interview to Al Jazeera television from his Pakistan hang-out.

And this is the same Musharraf who permitted his nation’s own Dr. Strangelove, A.Q. Khan, to sell nuclear do-it-yourself bomb kits to Libya and North Korea. When the story of the flea-market in fissionable materials was exposed, Musharraf (and Bush) both proclaimed their shock - shock! - over the bomb sales. Musharraf didn’t know? Sure. Those tons of lethal hardware must have been shipped by flying pig.

But, unlike Saddam and Osama, creations of Ronald Reagan’s and George Bush Sr.’s Frankenstein factories, Musharraf was a Clinton special.

And it all began with an unpaid electricity bill. In 1998, Pakistan wouldn’t pay up millions, and they owed billions, to British and American electricity companies. And for good reason: the contracts called for paying insanely Continue reading ‘Hillary’s Musharraf’

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Killer of Karachi! Funny how the "loyal bushies" cozy up to fellow despotic dictators isn't it?

Could it be they have something in common? You bet! Both finance brutality and are merchants of death in the Middle East. But wait there's more, the Clinton connection was made. That brings us to the most evil despotic dictator today, Bush.

Why the generosity toward a fellow despot that would suspend his countries Constitution?

Maybe he wants to see how well it works.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

You-Ef-Oh


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democratic U.S. presidential hopeful Dennis Kucinich may have been ridiculed for saying he had seen a UFO, but for some former military pilots and other observers, unidentified flying objects are no laughing matter.

An international panel of two dozen former pilots and government officials called on the U.S. government on Monday to reopen its generation-old UFO investigation as a matter of safety and security given continuing reports about flying discs, glowing spheres and other strange sightings.

"Especially after the attacks of 9/11, it is no longer satisfactory to ignore radar returns ... which cannot be associated with performances of existing aircraft and helicopters," they said in a statement released at a news conference.

The panelists from seven countries, including former senior military officers, said they had each seen a UFO or conducted an official investigation into UFO phenomena.

The subject of UFOs grabbed the spotlight in the U.S. presidential race last month when Kucinich, a member of Congress from Ohio, said during a televised debate with other Democratic candidates that he had seen one.

Former presidents Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter are both reported to have claimed UFO sightings.

Most turn out to be misidentified aircraft, satellites or meteors. A panelist who once worked for Britain's Ministry of Defense said 5 percent of incidents cannot be explained.
@ Reuters
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I too have seen a UFO, a REAL BIG one in the woods of Northern Minnesota, raced around trying to locate where it landed but could not find it in the wooded area, dammmit! I'm thinking they did not want to be found.

Compared to extraterrestrial life we are quite retarded considering where they are vs. where we are. Reminds me of the old Sci-Fi flicks of the aliens wanting peace and we just want to throw the ammo at them, yup retarded.

Someday we might get some insight, but not until we pull our collective heads out of our collective butts and quit destroying every damn thing.

.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Monday, Monday!

At the Mercy of the Military

Email this item Email Print this item Print
Posted on Nov 12, 2007
Gen. Casey
AP Photo / Brennan Linsley

Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey is one of a few military leaders, Hedges argues, who has the power and possibly the inclination to prevent a war with Iran.

By Chris Hedges

The last, best hope for averting a war with Iran lies with the United States military. The Democratic Congress, cowed by the Israel lobby and terrified of appearing weak on defense before the presidential elections, will do nothing to halt an attack. The media, especially the electronic press, is working overtime to whip up fear of a nuclear Iran and tar Tehran with abetting attacks against American troops in Iraq. The American public is complacent, unsure of what to believe, knocked off balance by fear and passive. We will be saved or doomed by our generals.

The last wall of defense that prevents the Bush administration from targeting Iran, an attack that could ignite a regional conflagration and usher in apocalyptic scenarios in the Middle East, runs through the offices of Secretary of Defense Robert Gates; Adm. William Fallon , the head of the Central Command (CENTCOM); and Gen. George Casey, the Army’s new chief of staff. These three figures in the defense establishment have told George W. Bush and the Congress how depleted the U.S. military has become, that it cannot manage another conflict, and that a war with Iran would make the war with Iraq look like an act of prudence and common sense.

The reliance on the military command, however, to be the voice of reason in the debate about a new war is not a healthy sign for our deteriorating democracy. Compliant generals can always be found to carry out the Dr. Strangelove designs of a mad White House. Those who resist implementing decisions can easily be removed. The protective cover provided by these figures in the defense establishment could vanish.


@ TRUTHDIG
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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sunny Sunday





For all the veterans of all the just and unjust wars, we set aside a day to honor those brave men and women that have served without question.

We only hope that someday the need for soldiers to fight wars will no longer be there and this day will be a remembrance of an earlier time before the world achieved peace amongst it's people.

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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Saturday Again





OK so I feel lazy today, but the interview with DK was one of eye opening and reality check.

The old phrase is: You do not know how far down you are until you start to go back up.

The frog in the frypan thing really works!

Sizzle, sizzle!

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Friday, November 09, 2007

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Das Boot


Rep. Robert Wexler sent his constituents this beautiful and admirable Email today:

As a person who supports holding this Administration accountable for their deceptive actions, you may be interested to know about the recent votes in the House regarding H.Res. 333, "Impeaching Richard B. Cheney, Vice President of the United States, for high crimes and misdemeanors."

I share your belief that Vice President Cheney must answer for his deceptive actions in office, particularly with regard to the preparations for the Iraq war and the revelation of the identity of covert agent Valerie Plame Wilson as part of political retribution against her husband. That is why I voted against the motion to table debate on H.Res. 333. Along with only 85 other Democrats, I opposed tabling the measure and supported beginning immediate debate and a vote on the Cheney impeachment resolution. The vote on tabling the Kucinich resolution was rejected, and the House subsequently voted to refer the matter to the Judiciary Committee.

Vice President Dick Cheney and the Bush Administration have demonstrated a consistent pattern of abusing the law and misleading Congress and the American people. We see the consequences of these actions abroad in Iraq and at home through the violations of our civil liberties. The American people are served well with a legitimate and thorough impeachment inquiry. I will urge the Judiciary Committee to schedule impeachment hearings immediately and not let this issue languish as it has over the last six months. Only through hearings can we bring begin to correct the abuses of Dick Cheney and the Bush Administration; and, if it is determined in these hearings that Vice President Cheney has committed High Crimes and Misdemeanors, he should be impeached and removed from office. It is time for Congress to expose the multitude of misdeeds of the Administration, and I am hopeful that the Judiciary Committee will expeditiously begin an investigation of this matter.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns. I sincerely appreciate your input and hope that you will feel free to contact me anytime I may be of assistance to you. In addition, I hope you find my website (http://wexler.house.gov) a valuable resource in keeping up with events in Washington and in South Florida.

With warm regards,

Congressman Robert Wexler
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So many times I have got my hopes up only to have dashed upon the rocky shores of repugs' and their innate ability to neutralize any attempt to dislodge their sinister plans.

I would hope that somehow, someone could finally stick it to these merchants of disgust and kick their asses to the curb.

So it is with deadeye dick. If anyone ever deserved to get the boot, it is him and his fellow neo-fascist death merchants.

America has been transformed into a worldwide terrorist organization by dick and his warped views and desire for world domination.

We are much better than that and as such deserve much better.

.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Pig Trough


GOP proponents of a California ballot initiative to end the state's winner-take-all method of apportioning electoral votes have raised roughly $539,000 in the past two weeks, according to a campaign finance report filed Tuesday afternoon.

The half-million-dollar haul represents approximately one-quarter of the $2 million that supporters of the proposal said last week they would need to qualify the politically-charged initiative for the California ballot in 2008.

Chris Lehane, a veteran Democratic strategist coordinating opposition to the proposal, said the new donations reflect "just how desperate Republicans are when it comes to 2008 and just how far they are willing to go to try to keep their death grip on power."

The Republican proposal would upend the method of apportioning California's 55 electoral votes, moving from a winner-take-all system based on the popular vote to one that awards one vote for each congressional district a candidate wins.

Such a plan would alter the political geography of the current presidential contest, shifting as many as 20 consistently Democratic electoral votes that come from safe Republican districts into the GOP column.

In late September, political observers declared the proposal virtually dead after the original consultants running the campaign resigned amid allegations that it was a front for the presidential campaign of former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

According to disclosure forms filed Tuesday with the California Secretary of State by the group California Counts, which is now pushing the initiative, the state's Republican Party provided the single biggest donation to revive the proposal.

A spokesman for the state party said the $80,000 donation on the group's disclosure forms represents an in-kind contribution, but that the party would be evaluating whether to give more in the coming weeks.

Rep. Darrell Issa, a wealthy San Diego County Republican, was one of several individuals who contributed $50,000 to the revived proposal. Issa's campaign committee also donated $9,700 to California Counts.

Issa has a history of supporting contentious electoral measures in the Golden State. In 2003 he helped bankroll the recall election that saw former Democratic Gov. Gray Davis turned out of office and replaced with current GOP Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Other prominent donors who have donated $50,000 include former Univision CEO Jerrold Perenchio and Orange County Businessman Duane Roberts.


@ HUFFPO
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Probably not an issue for most of you non-Cali folks but this clearly shows how desperate the repugs are getting and no less than the king of dirty tricks and manipulation, Darrell Issa is right in the middle. Itsa is a total nazi prick that has no business being anywhere in government with his BS games. "For the people", idiot not the rich repugs only. Always taking, never giving. At least the dummies will be pissing their money down the drain cause the people here are not as stoopid as he is and will never approve the measure. HA!

(Oh yea, Issa is the one on the right in the pic)

.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Save the Rich!


Naomi Klein's Latest Column

Rapture Rescue 911: Disaster Response for the Chosen
by Naomi Klein
November 2, 2007

I used to worry that the United States was in the grip of extremists who sincerely believed that the Apocalypse was coming and that they and their friends would be airlifted to heavenly safety. I have since reconsidered. The country is indeed in the grip of extremists who are determined to act out the biblical climax—the saving of the chosen and the burning of the masses—but without any divine intervention. Heaven can wait. Thanks to the booming business of privatized disaster services, we're getting the Rapture right here on earth.

Just look at what is happening in Southern California. Even as wildfires devoured whole swaths of the region, some homes in the heart of the inferno were left intact, as if saved by a higher power. But it wasn't the hand of God; in several cases it was the handiwork of Firebreak Spray Systems. Firebreak is a special service offered to customers of insurance giant American International Group—but only if they happen to live in the wealthiest ZIP codes in the country. Members of the company's Private Client Group pay an average of $19,000 to have their homes sprayed with fire retardant. During the wildfires, the "mobile units"—racing around in red fire-trucks—even extinguished fires for their clients.

One customer described a scene of modern-day Revelation. "Just picture it. Here you are in that raging wildfire. Smoke everywhere. Flames everywhere. Plumes of smoke coming up over the hills," he told the Los Angeles Times. "Here's a couple guys showing up in what looks like a firetruck who are experts trained in fighting wildfire and they're there specifically to protect your home."

And your home alone. "There were a few instances," one of the private firefighters told Bloomberg News, "where we were spraying and the neighbor's house went up like a candle." With public fire departments cut to the bone, gone are the days of Rapid Response, when everyone was entitled to equal protection. Now, increasingly intense natural disasters will be met with the new model: Rapture Response.

During last year's hurricane season, Florida homeowners were offered similarly high-priced salvation by HelpJet, a travel agency launched with promises to turn "a hurricane evacuation into a jet-setter vacation." For an annual fee, a company concierge takes care of everything: transport to the air terminal, luxurious travel, bookings at five-star resorts. Most of all, HelpJet is an escape hatch from the kind of government failure on display during Katrina. "No standing in lines, no hassle with crowds, just a first class experience."

HelpJet is about to get some serious competition from some much larger players. In northern Michigan, during the same week that the California fires raged, the rural community of Pellston was in the grip of an intense public debate. The village is about to become the headquarters for the first fully privatized national disaster response center. The plan is the brainchild of Sovereign Deed, a little-known start-up with links to the mercenary firm Triple Canopy. Like HelpJet, Sovereign Deed works on a "country-club type membership fee," according to the company's vice president, retired Brig. Gen. Richard Mills. In exchange for a one-time fee of $50,000 followed by annual dues of $15,000, members receive "comprehensive catastrophe response services" should their city be hit by a manmade disaster that can "cause severe threats to public health and/or well-being" (read: a terrorist attack), a disease outbreak or a natural disaster. Basic membership includes access to medicine, water and food, while those who pay for "premium tiered services" will be eligible for VIP rescue missions.

Like so many private disaster companies, Sovereign Deed is selling escape from climate change and the failed state—by touting the security clearance and connections its executives amassed while working for that same state. So Mills, speaking recently in Pellston, explained, "The reality of FEMA is that it has no infrastructure, and a lot of our National Guard is elsewhere." Sovereign Deed, on the other hand, claims to have "direct access and special arrangements with several national and international information centers. These proprietary arrangements allow our Emergency Operations Center to…give our Members that critical head start in times of crisis." In this secular version of the Rapture, God's hand is unnecessary. Not when you have retired ex-CIA agents and ex–Special Forces lifting the chosen to safety—no need to pray, just pay. And who needs a celestial New Jerusalem when you can have Pellston, with its flexible local politicians and its surprisingly modern regional airport?

Sovereign Deed could soon find itself competing with Blackwater USA, whose CEO, Erik Prince, wrote recently of his plans to offer "full spectrum" services, including humanitarian aid in disasters. When fires broke out in San Diego County, near the proposed site of the controversial Blackwater West base, the company immediately seized the opportunity to make its case. Blackwater could have been the "tactical operation center for East County fires," said company vice president Brian Bonfiglio. "Can you imagine how much of a benefit it would be if we were operational now?" To show off its capacity, Blackwater has been distributing badly needed food and blankets to people of Potrero, California. "This is something we've always done," Bonfiglio said. "This is what we do." Actually, what Blackwater does, as Iraqis have painfully learned, is not protect entire communities or countries but "protect the principal"—the principal being whoever has paid Blackwater for its guns and gear.

The same pay-to-be-saved logic governs this entire new sector of country club disaster management. There is, of course, another principle that could guide our collective responses in a disaster-prone world: the simple conviction that every life is of equal value. For anyone out there who still believes in that wild idea, the time has urgently arrived to protect the principle.
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If that doesn't make you physically ill, you are not human.

Whisked away from the disaster, driven through the hordes and masses of displaced people, running over and shooting others to make your escape to "Paradise".

Good luck with that rich boy.

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Sunday, November 04, 2007

Circle Bridge






This bridge was featured in the BMW film "Ticker":



All BMW convertible scenes were filmed on the road I spend my Sundays on, nice and twisty.

Gas here is $3.30/gal. for regular unleaded, cost me $10.30 to fill up......my bike!

I remember the gas wars back in the 70's with 0.25 cents per gal. Long way from that now.

OPEC-ers keep running up the price as we blast the Middle East from the second century back to the first with DU, thats a fair trade huh?

Thought so.

.

Sunny Sunday

Peter Max lithograph, “Sunrise”, 1976


Al Jazeera has the rundown on Pakistan.

The vicious rumor has resurfaced regarding the false flag/ Enterprise threat.
As you all know I went over this possibility some time back. It seems to me if you bring this stuff up, it would deter those that might have that very thought in mind by revealing the possibility of it occurring, someone actually might know what they are up to. Exposing these people for what they are, our own home grown terrorists, can only keep the world a safer place.

We fight and we fight, when we know it is not right, yet to prove our might we continue to fight.

Fools indeed.

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