Recent comments

  • TAR SANDS - DUMP the POISON GRAB THE CASH and WALK AWAY   16 hours 23 min ago

    For eternity? Nah. One million years after humans are extinct things should return to normal. These petro-guys just want to win, and as we all remember: He who dies with the most toys WINS!


  • The Dying Society aka USA   16 hours 26 min ago
  • The Dying Society aka USA   16 hours 29 min ago

    This IS America:

    November 24, 2015
    Tomgram: Rebecca Gordon, Corruption U.S.A.

    [Note for TomDispatch Readers: There will be no Thursday post this week. The next TD post will be on Sunday, November 29th. And a good Thanksgiving to you all! Tom]

    I recently took a little trip into the past and deep into America’s distant war zones to write a piece I called “It’s a $cam.” It was, for me, an eye-opening journey into those long-gone years of American “nation-building” and “reconstruction” in Afghanistan and Iraq. Mind you, I still remembered some of what had been reported at the time like the “urine-soaked” police academy built in Baghdad by an American private contractor with taxpayer dollars. But it was the cumulative effect of it all that now struck me -- one damning report after another that made it clear Washington was incapable of building or rebuilding anything whatsoever. There were all those poorly constructed or unfinished military barracks, police stations, and outposts for the new national security forces the U.S. military was so eagerly “standing up” in both countries. There were the unfinished or miserably constructed schools, training centers, and “roads to nowhere.” There were those local militaries and police forces whose ranks were heavily populated by“ghost soldiers.” There was that shiny new U.S. military headquarters in Afghanistan that cost $25 million and no one wanted or would ever use. It was, in short, a litany of fiascoes and disasters that never seemed to end.

    Financially, Washington had invested sums in both countries thatfar exceeded the Marshall Plan, which so successfully put Western Europe back on its feet after World War II. Yet Iraq and Afghanistan were left on their knees amid a carnival of corruption and misspent taxpayer money. What made revisiting this spectacle so stunning wasn’t just the inability of the U.S. military, the Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and a crew of crony warrior corporations raking in the big bucks to do anything right, but that this was the United States of America. It was the country I -- and I was hardly alone in this -- had grown up thinking of as the globe's master builder. In the 1950s and early 1960s, my childhood years, it seemed as if there was nothing Americans couldn’t build successfully from an unparalleled highway system to rockets that were moonward bound.

    Half a century later, it’s clear that, at least in our war zones, there’s nothing we’ve been capable of building right, no matter the dollars available. And that, as TomDispatch regular Rebecca Gordon suggests today in an eye-opening piece, is just the beginning of our new American reality. Tom

    Home, Sweet Kleptocracy
    Kabul in America
    By Rebecca Gordon

    Killing 58,000 was deemed worth it for the profit earned over a farce known as Tonkin Gulf was just the beginning of The Real American Values being exposed to sunlight (TY Ellsburg). JFK may've preceded it, and when you do not play, you die. His assassination may've been the beginning of the end. Wait, Wilson's WW1 and hosting the KKK's Birth of a Nation was the beginning of the end, after the Progressives were achieving so much.

    TR and progressives were great, the church got ahold and prohibition followed. Hoover screwed up, FDR made the first middle class in history.

  • DAESH ally Turkey downs Russian jet bombing DAESH   16 hours 31 min ago
    Quote zmb:

    You have no idea what you are talking about.

    Gee, Thanks Mr. Trump.


  • Why should I vote for Bernie??   16 hours 40 min ago
    Quote MMfrompa:

    Can anyone give a good reason why a middle aged guy like myself should vote for Bernie Sanders?

    And the award for most disingenuous opening question goes to... MMfrompa!

    Answer to rhetorical question: YOU don't vote for Bernie. YOU go vote for whatever troglodyte Republican spews the most fear and hatred (or whichever one is directly/indirectly paying you to troll this message board). Then, after your Republican hero flushes the economy and environment down the toilet (what's left of it anyway)... then you continue to blame the "liberal left" (said in a Rush Limbaugh voice) for all the ills of society, while continuing to vote for more of the same. Yes, it's true; your right-wing politicians CAN fix the problems by continuing the same policies that created the problems in the first place. You know, dig your way out of the hole. Rinse, repeat. You just have to believe in the magic of supply-side economics!

    Quote MMfrompa:

    I would say I'm upper middle class...

    No you're not. NO upper middle-class person would waste his or her time trolling message boards with idiotic Fox News talking points. Instead, you would be busy earning the income that put you into the upper middle-class bracket in the first place. I know plenty of upper middle-class and wealthy people who are just as conservative wackadoodle as you are, but none of them have the time to waste arguing with the other side, which you seem to have.

    It's just amazing what lengths conservatives will go to these days to lie, cheat, and steal their way to victory. And it never ends...

  • Donald Trump is the next Hitler and the Republican Party is the new Nazi Party   16 hours 56 min ago

    Wow Roland... Learn something every day!

  • Rampant sexism in the Sanders campaign???   18 hours 24 min ago

    Reply to #107: I noticed that too, BJ. It would be nice to know who she does support. However if I recall, that video was recorded a year ago. If that's the case, Bernie's campaign hadn't even begun yet.

  • How Stupid Has the Democratic Party Become?   18 hours 45 min ago
    Try that and the link to the article describing how she antagonized Nancy Pelosi.

  • How Stupid Has the Democratic Party Become?   18 hours 48 min ago

    Probably the biggest problem the Democrats now have is Debbie Wasserman Schultz. She was a co-chair of Hillary's campaign in 2008 and she - a true soulmate of Hillary - always pursued her personal career goals as chairwoman of the DNC rather than the good of the party. She did much to lose 2014 for the Democrats, refusing to support some Democratic House candidates because she was friendly with their Republican opponents, for example, in 3 races which those Democrats eventually lost to her Republican pals.
    She had alienated and antagonized almost all the Democratic leadership. President Obama almost had her replaced, once even having a replacement chosen and ready but she threatened to howl "sexism" and "antisemitism" so the administration backed off on it.
    Hillary is the only friend in the party she has left so she will take extra care of her.
    The chairmanship of the DNC is considered a great career opportunity for a Democratic politician and a great opportunity for their advancement. That is the only apparent purpose that office is serving in Schulz's tenure.

  • It's the British Empire, Stupid!   19 hours 2 min ago

    Lyndon larouche is mentally ill.

  • It's the British Empire, Stupid!   20 hours 4 min ago
    Quote LPAC:

    Retired U.S. General
    Urges U.S.-Russia Military

    Gen. Peter B. Zwack, who served as U.S. military attaché in Moscow during part of the Obama presidency, has published a strong call for an immediate resumption of U.S.-Russia bilateral military dialogue, to both advance the war against the Islamic State and re-establish institutional contacts to avoid war. Gen. Zwack wrote in Defense One that he was present in Jan. 2014 at the very last high-level discussion between American and Russian military commanders.

    “It's way past time for senior U.S. and Russian defense leaders and staffs to start meeting again,” he wrote, adding “it is increasingly dangerous in this cyber-fast world for both our nuclear-tipped nations to have such a dearth of contact.”

    He urged that such lines of regular communication would be

    “hardnosed practical business: adding some human familiarity at key command-and-control nodes that might keep a sudden accident or incident from flashing into catastrophe. In a fast-breaking crisis, you want leaders who already know one another. And over time, these linkages might help us move beyond these sour political times, and rebuild the kind of relationships that will allow our countries to work on global challenges where we have areas of common interest.”

    Gen. Zwack called for Obama to give the green light for Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and JCS Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford to meet with their Russian counterparts, Sergey Shoigu and Gen. Valery Gerasimov.

    Gen. Zwack cited the Paris attacks, the Sinai bombing, and other recent events as obvious reasons for re-establishing the military-to-military institutional dialogue, warning

    “without a dialogue of any consequence our strategic defense relationship will be even more dangerous and prone to hair-trigger miscalculation or misunderstanding ... Without contact, we both continue to demonize each other while hardening our populations. It's better agreeing to disagree than having no discussion at all. Without direct dialogue between our senior defense leaders we cannot even begin to consider a more mutually cooperative and secure future.”

  • It's the British Empire, Stupid!   20 hours 5 min ago
    Quote LPAC:

    Belgian MP Calls into
    Question Relations with
    Saudi Arabia

    In several press interviews, Belgian MP Dirk Van der Maelen (Socialist, opposition) who currently heads the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Belgian House of Representatives and is otherwise known for having sent letters to members of the U.S. Congress to reenact the Glass-Steagall Act, has called on the Belgian government to thoroughly review its diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia.

    "After the bombings in Paris, questions are increasingly raised about the financing of terrorism by Gulf States such as Saudi Arabia," writes the Flemish daily De Standaard. The paper then quotes Van der Maelen saying:

    "The fact that Belgium maintains friendly relations with countries which follow and finance the worldwide spread of Wahhabism, a current of radical Islam, is irresponsible.... You can't have a credible policy of de-radicalization [of youth] while at the same time signing economic treaties with governments backing extreme groups. Furthermore, we have long known that Saudi Arabia violates labor and human rights. Therefore, time has come to review these economic relations."

    It should be noted that in the center of Brussels, not far from the EU Commission, Saudi Arabia has been financing since 1967 the Belgian Islamic Center (Centre Islamique de Belgique), a huge center for propagating Wahhabism.

    According to diplomatic cables disclosed by WikiLeaks, the Saudi Ambassador in Brussels reported that in 2012, the Belgian Foreign Ministry and Belgian State Security asked him to repatriate Khalid Alabri, radical Imam of the Great Mosque of Brussels, the country's largest mosque, because of his extremist and potentially dangerous speeches. Under Belgian pressure, Alibri finally was sent back to Riyadh on April 14, 2012.

    "Behind this," says Felice Dassetto, a sociologist at the University of Louvain,

    "the Muslim World League has a strategic objective developed by the Saudis since the 1960s which is to become the hegemonic pole of the Islamic world."

    Another key factor is that close to half of firearms and munitions exported to the Middle East are produced in Belgium, reported the Flemish weekly Knack on Oct. 13. Belgian firearms exported to Saudi Arabia show up repeatedly in Libya and Syria; some of the weapons used by the terror squad that hit the Charlie Hebdo journalists in Paris on Jan. 7, 2015, were produced by the notorious Belgian firm Fabrique Nationale.

  • Russian jet shootdown   20 hours 19 min ago

    So when we hear special delegations are sent to specifically discuss these exact contingencies does it not follow that the content of those ideas, or protocols, would be pertinent, or available, for application when the exact events they are designed to address actually occur. In other words they set up rules for this exact event but when it comes to have any discusion of those rules the lawyers have gone home

  • It's the British Empire, Stupid!   20 hours 23 min ago
    Quote LPAC:

    Former Drone Operator:
    Children Killed by Drones
    Were Called 'Fun-Sized

    In an interview with Democracy Now! on Friday night, Nov. 20, former drone operator Michael Haas, one of the signers of the powerful letter opposing the drone killings, detailed the hideous policy and behavior toward killing civilians by remote control. Haas told interviewer Amy Goodman, “the term 'fun-sized terrorists' was used to just sort of denote children that we'd see on screen.” Haas then elaborated,

    “Other terms we'd use would be 'cutting the grass before it grows too long,' just doing whatever you can to try to make it easier to kill whatever's on screen. And the culture is, that mentality is very much nurtured within the drone community, because these,— every Hellfire shot is sort of lauded and applauded, and we don't really examine who exactly was killed, but just that it was an effective shot and the missile hit its target.”

    Haas is one of the drone operator whistleblowers who appears in the documentary, “Drone,” which opened at the AMC theater in Manhattan on Nov. 20 and will be playing this week in New York City and Toronto, Canada.

    The movie team is running a high profile campaign to build support for stopping the drone murders. On Friday night, Jeremy Scahill, one of the founders of The Intercept that published the “Drone Papers” secret documents, appeared with the film's director, Tonje Hessen Schei, and former drone operator Brandon Bryant following the 7 PM screening. On Saturday afternoon and evening, Bryant appeared again, first with the attorney for the whistleblowers, Jesselyn Radack, and then with the film's producers for a question and answer session

    On the film's website,, an advertisement quotes Lawrence Wilkerson, Colonel U.S. Army (retired): “Our potential collective future. Watch it and weep for us. Or watch it and determine to change that future.” Wilkerson is the former aide to Colin Powell in the Bush/Cheney administration, who is an outspoken and frequent opponent of the perpetual war policy of both Bush and Obama, and who gave a lengthy interview to EIR in 2011.

    Two other films exposing the drone program are also circulating. A 2013 documentary called, “Unmanned: The Drone Wars,” features interviews with victims of the drone attacks, including the brother of the innocent 16-year old Pakistani boy, Tariq Aziz. “Good Kill” (2014), a Hollywood movie starring Ethan Hawke, is a fictionalized account of the psychological breakdown of a drone operator who questions his role.

  • "NASA Study: Mass Gains of Antarctic Ice Sheet Greater than Losses"   20 hours 44 min ago
    Quote mjolnir:

    "Ah HA!! Proof there's no global warming.", I thought you clowns no longer used that term. Better watch out you're liable to lose your Lib/Prog bona fides.

    I believe the term fell into disfavor because idiot deniers deliberately started to conflate weather and climate. Just because the globe is warming as a whole doesn't negate cold or winter... and how many times have we hear idiots deniers claim... gee... record cold out today... proof there's no global warming!

  • Hillary Clinton Admits ISIS Supplied From Our Ally Turkey, Funded By Our Ally Saudi Arabia   20 hours 58 min ago
    Quote zmb:
    Quote mdhess:

    Whenever I see "Global Research" in a post I immediately discount any veracity to the content.

    Of course... it's not news until it's on a corporate owned media outlet right? Maybe the corporate owned Huffington Post would be more your speed? Anyone who is even slightly informed of the geo-political dynamics of Asia knows that Turkey has been arming Wahhabist/Salafist fighters fir decades. They get cover and obfuscation by the mainstream corporate media machine (which can't even bring itself to recognize that Turkey commited a genocide in the 20th century by bringing it up... EVER). The U.S. bends over backwards to make sure that when Turkey does something horrible, it NEVER ends up as news.

    Turkey is a horrible ally and a truly evil regime... when the citizens of the West wake up and recognize it... we will finally be able to defeat the Islamic State.

    Did Huffington post string together a bunch tenuous links to reach a ludicrous conclusion?

  • Rampant sexism in the Sanders campaign???   21 hours 12 min ago

    FWIW, Zenzoe, I've read quite a few of the posts in this thread and I'm with you and Ren.

  • Hillary Clinton Admits ISIS Supplied From Our Ally Turkey, Funded By Our Ally Saudi Arabia   21 hours 12 min ago
    Quote mdhess:Setting aside the veracity of the piece, whatever assertion it is you are attempting is nonsensical, disjointed and irrational. Perhaps you can explain what it is you think the information means aside from just providing some foundational blather on which you can lay unfounded slurs and accusations. We all know already that ISIS was birthed from Al Qaeda and that Al Qaeda was a child of the CIA -- that's not news. The suspect nature of Saudi Arabia and Turkey's motives and actions aren't news. So...?

    The average American's understanding is maybe a fraction of what you've already forgotten... you are extremely intelligent and informed... you are the exception, not the rule. This information needs to get out there. The game keeps being played because the average Westerner is completely in the dark about the nature of ISIS and Salafism in general.

    We have to re-examine our relationships with Salafist/Wahhabist enablers... it absolutely can't keep going on. Most Americans think that ISIS is the other, not an outgrowth of looking the other way while our allies pursue nefarious agendas.

    Informing the uninformed is the best way to shed sunlight on an issue that has been allowed to fester and multiply (because it's in the dark and can't be seen).

    You are obviously hyper intelligent but with all of those brains you must have realized that you are light years ahead of the average American somewhere down the line. Just because you know something doesn't mean that people who don't don't deserve to know it also... have some patience with the uninformed and allow them time to wrap their heads around difficult to swallow issues.

    Shooting the messenger and belittling others who attempt to do the right thing and inform the uninformed is counterproductive towards developing a better understanding. Most people's IQs hover well below yours, yet they still deserve to have at least a cursory understanding of something like ISIS. If they just watched CNN and read USA Today... they would know almost nothing... all of the facts about ISIS are being discussed outside of the major media outlets. These are the same media outlets that maliciously beat the drums leading up to the 2003 Iraq war. They knew it was illegal but beat the drums of Nationalism and revenge to a fever pitch regardless. These same media outlets are supposed to buck up against an Industrial Military complex who has deep financial interests with the progenitors of Salafism/Wahhabism? This same media has been carefully not mentioning the Armenian genocide and not mentioning any of the great evils perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire. The same media that conveniently doesn't EVER mention Wahhabism or Salafism but uses the generic and innacurrate term of "Islamic extremism". Never does this media mention that the vast majority of any sort of "Islamic terrorism" is Salfist in nature and origin. The media is a joke and if the average person knew how dirty and dastardly Turkey and the Saudis really are... I have to believe that they would call out for a change in our disastrous foreign policy of doing anything and partnering with anyone who would give the Russians a black eye. That poilicy is literally destroying the world.

  • Rampant sexism in the Sanders campaign???   21 hours 19 min ago

    Yes I did enjoy that too. I wish she would have taken it a step further and kicked in support for Bernie Sanders. She didn't mention who she supported. For all I know she could be supporting a republican.

  • How Stupid Has the Democratic Party Become?   21 hours 23 min ago

    Barbie, my grandfather was a democratic socialist and member of the Socialist Democratic Party in the 1920s - in Eastern Europe. The New Deal wasn't socialism but it flirted with it. I don't know if FDR was a socialist - if he was he kept it quiet - but Henry Wallace probably was. Although the New Deal was really an attempt to save capitalism and FDR had to "move to the left" - not only in rhetoric but also in governing - because socialism of the more democratic kind and even Leninist authoritarian socialism were very popular in the United States in the Great Depression, particularly within the labor movement. So much so that there was a very real possibility of communist revolution, I mean armed overthrow of the government and system, much more so than in the '60s. The political and economic elites FDR came from had very good reason to be afraid so FDR co-opted the socialists' program.
    The relatively newly established Soviet Union added much to that fear and the relatively new absence of it is why the elites no longer fear and act with an audacity not seen for a long age in pursuing their interests at the expense of ours.

  • This idea that we can't attack Hillary, because she could be the nominee, and therefore...   21 hours 27 min ago

    That's what I keep saying, it's a strategy to suppress Democratic votes should Bernie not win the nomination.

  • Russian jet shootdown   21 hours 32 min ago

    The Russian ambassador cancelled a scheduled visit. As far as any understanding between Russia and Turkey the only thing I can find is that Turkey had twice warned Russia about flying in its airspace.

    The whole thing is a clusterf#*k; there are 11 air forces flying over Syria.

  • This idea that we can't attack Hillary, because she could be the nominee, and therefore...   21 hours 46 min ago

    i see paid shills

  • The circular firing squad   21 hours 52 min ago

    It's really disappointing to see how easily manipulated so many liberals are by all the propaganda directed at Hillary by the right. You'd think that Hillary was the anti-Christ the way you people talk. If Hillary wins the nomination then Bernie supporters will regroup and redirect. You all talk as if this candidacy is the be-all and end-all of progressivism forever. Get over yourselves.

    I proudly support Bernie. I was one of the first people to donate to his campaign but I don't see any point in pinning all my hopes on just this campaign. And do you know who agrees with me? Bernie, that's who.

  • This idea that we can't attack Hillary, because she could be the nominee, and therefore...   22 hours 7 min ago

    And I should take advice from someone on the low-information, racist, xenophobic, homophobic, bible-thumping wing of the political spectrum because?

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Community Archive

Why the Kochs Really Embraced Criminal Justice Reform...

It looks like the Koch brothers have scammed us once again.

When news first came out that Charles and David Koch -- the Koch brothers -- were supporting criminal justice reform efforts in Congress, many of us thought, "Wow, they're actually doing something good for once."

And for good reason, too.