Friday 17 April '09 show

  • Article: After Year of Heavy Losses, Citigroup Finds a Profit .
  • Article: William K. Black on Bill Moyers Journal, April 3, 2009.
  • Article: Eurozone shows few signs of recovery.
    "The rapid pace of the eurozone's economic contraction shows few signs of slowing, with industrial production down almost 20 per cent year-on-year in February and inflation dissipating, official data showed yesterday."
  • Book: "Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You with the Bill)", David Cay Johnston.
  • Video: Olbermann-Obama is Wrong-regarding prosecution.
  • Article: The Quiet Coup.
  • "Brunch with Bernie" with Senator Bernie Sanders, Independent of Vermont. Citigroup profit, accounting adjustment. Montpelier, VT airport. Bill Moyers interviewed Professor William K. Black, author of "The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One". Eurozone industrial production down. US first deflation for some time. Bernie's chief of staff just back from China, the infrastructure he saw in airports, roads, cell phones was far better than in the US. Issues. Do we look at real problems? PDA events this weekend concerning health care. Health care, bankruptcy, would-be entrepreneurs afraid to leave jobs. Statistics from "Free Lunch". The Southern Poverty Law Center. It is hard to explain to kids why people get pass on wrongdoing. Keith Olbermann's special comment.

    "The Quiet Coup". The stimulus package is a beginning. Consumer product safety law. Get the members of Congress to complete their own tax forms every year. It is horrendous. Loopholes that let businesses offshore money. Raise FICA limits, help Social Security. Get rid of lobbyists? Thom suggested making lobbying non-tax deductible. Congress slowed down the revolving door. Law for people with no insurance to be able to buy into Medicare? He has introduced legislation for state administered single payer health care. Pre-existing conditions. Medicare part D problems.

  • Bumper Music: City Of Blinding Lights, U2 (video).
  • Article: On the Obama Administration’s Release of OLC Memos: Statement of U.S. Senator Russ Feingold.
    "I applaud President Obama for his decision to release these memos approving the CIA’s so-called enhanced interrogation program with only minor redactions. This effort to level with the American people is long overdue. I also strongly support the Office of Legal Counsel’s action to officially withdraw these memos, in another repudiation of the previous administration’s disregard for the rule of law.

    “The president has stated that it is not his administration’s intention to prosecute those who acted reasonably and relied in good faith upon legal advice from the Department of Justice. As I understand it, his decision does not mean that anyone who engaged in activities that the Department had not approved, those who gave improper legal advice or those who authorized the program could not be prosecuted. The details made public in these memos paint a horrifying picture and reveal how the Bush administration's lawyers and top officials were complicit in torture. The so-called enhanced interrogation program was a violation of our core principles as a nation and those responsible should be held accountable.

    "
  • Article: Charter of the International Military Tribunal: Article 7.
    "The official position of defendants, whether as Heads of State or responsible officials in Government Departments, shall not be considered as freeing them from responsibility or mitigating punishment."
  • Article: Charter of the International Military Tribunal: Article 8.
    "The fact that the Defendant acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior shall not free him from responsibility, but may be considered in mitigation of punishment if the Tribunal determines that justice so requires."
  • Article: Mayor Bloomberg Says Killers Don’t Read The Wall Street Journal.
  • Guest: Christy Harvey, Director of Strategic Communications at the Center for American Progress, MicCheckradio.org. "News Under the Radar". It is warmer in Alaska. Statues, benches that she thought were permanent are melting. Obama following Gerald Ford etc, in ignoring crimes of the past. Over 30 died under torture. Russ Feingold's interpretation of Obama's words. Call the White House comment line. Obama released the memos, then said no prosecutions. Did the CIA back him down? A lot of torture was by contractors. Articles 7 and 8. Why is Bybee still a judge, and Yoo teaching? New way to get loaded at bar - London architecture pub, get tipsy by breathing. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, first comment about the recession causing violence, said you would never find a reader of the Wall Street Journal murdering anyone. Science, when identical twins were adopted, one into poverty and one into the middle class, there is a 15-20 point difference in IQs. Poverty suppresses IQ.
  • Bumper Music: Come On In, Brad Paisley (video).
  • Book: "The Trial of Donald Rumsfeld: A Prosecution by Book", Michael Ratner.
  • Book: "Guantanamo: What the World Should Know (Politics of the Living)", Michael Ratner.
  • Guest: human rights attorney Michael Ratner, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights and author of “The Trial of Donald Rumsfeld: A Prosecution by Book” and "Guantanamo: What the World Should Know (Politics of the Living)". Thom is more than outraged by Obama not prosecuting CIA torturers. The release of the memos is a positive step, and they are chilling. He's flabbergasted. Article 8. Is Obama being threatened by the CIA and Military Industrial Complex? Some CIA people refused to torture. Will/can Ratner get involved in this? What to do. Yes they are involved, working with Europe, it would mean the accused could not travel, and that would pressure us to prosecute. Call Obama comment line, representatives, newspapers. It makes Obama complicit.
  • FDR said to make him. Obama released memos so we would pressure him? International pressure. Thom will keep open mind, but speak out as strongly as he can. Obama honest, naive?
  • Bumper Music: I'm A Nazi, Rush Limbaugh / WNNX-FM (Atlanta, GA) (video).
  • Article: Rep. Todd Tiahrt: Rush Limbaugh "Just An Entertainer". How long before he backtracks? I'm Sorry, Rush.
  • Article: Make Me Do It.
  • Is Obama playing a legal game? Thom thinks political. Obama voted for FISA.
  • Article: Bush memos parallel claim 9/11 mastermind’s children were tortured with insects, John Byrne.
    "Bush Administration memos released by the White House on Thursday provide new insight into claims that American agents used insects to torture the young children of alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

    In the memos, released Thursday, the Bush Administration White House Office of Legal Counsel offered its endorsement of CIA torture methods that involved placing an insect in a cramped, confined box with detainees. Jay S. Bybee, then-director of the OLC, wrote that insects could be used to capitalize on detainees’ fears.

    "
  • Obama, Mexico, sating he would go after drug users, not dealer.
  • Book: "Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust", Daniel Jonah Goldhagen.
  • Punishment for not following orders. Some people in the CIA and the DoJ gave up their careers. The torturers are the small guys; John Yoo is one of the medium guys, Bush Cheney and Rumsfeld are the big guys who should be in the dock. Blog about it as well.
  • Article: Maersk crew member on how they gained control over the pirates: ‘We’re union members.’.
  • Should we be like the terrorists?
  • Clip:
    "Soon afterward, Washington lead his soldiers across the Delaware River and onto victory in the Battle of Trenton. There he captured nearly 1000 foreign mercenaries and he faced a crucial choice.

    How would General Washington treat these prisoners? The British had already committed atrocities against Americans, including torture. As David Hackett Fischer describes in his Pulitzer Prize winning book, Washington's Crossing, thousands of American prisoners of war were “treated with extreme cruelty by British captors.” There are accounts of injured soldiers who surrendered being murdered instead of quartered, countless Americans dying in prison hulks in New York harbor, starvation and other acts of inhumanity perpetrated against Americans confined to churches in New York City.

    You can imagine, the light of our ideals shone dimly in those early dark days, years from an end to the conflict, years before our improbable triumph and the birth of our democracy. General Washington was not that far from where the Continental Congress had met and signed the Declaration of Independence. But it is easy to imagine how far that must have seemed. General Washington announced a decision unique in human history, sending the following order for handling prisoners:

    "

    Treat them with humanity, and Let them have no reason to Complain of our Copying the brutal example of the British army in their Treatment of our unfortunate brethren.

    Senator Hillary Clinton, September 28, 2006.

  • Bumper Music: Free, Donavon Frankenreiter & Jack Johnson (video).
  • Excerpt:
    "WHY AMERICAN SOCIETY COLLAPSED

    It must be admitted that all this was partly the result of extraordinary crafty tactics on the part of Liberals on the one hand, and obvious official stupidity or naïveté on the other hand. The Liberals were too clever to allow a simultaneous attack to be made on the whole of their Press. No one section functioned as cover for the other. While the alternative newspaper, in the most despicable manner possible, reviled everything that was sacred, furiously attacked the State and Government and incited certain classes of the community against each other, the national papers, also in Liberal hands, knew how to camouflage themselves as model examples of objectivity. They studiously avoided harsh language, knowing well that block-heads are capable of judging only by external appearances and never able to penetrate to the real depth and meaning of anything. They measure the worth of an object by its exterior and not by its content. This form of human frailty was carefully studied and understood by the Liberal Press.

    […]

    I believe that our present generation would easily master this danger if they were rightly led. For this generation has gone through certain experiences which must have strengthened the nerves of all those who did not become nervously broken by them. Certainly in days to come the Liberals will raise a tremendous cry throughout their newspapers once a hand is laid on their favorite nest, once a move is made to put an end to this scandalous Liberal Press and once this instrument which shapes public opinion is brought under Conservative control and no longer left in the hands of Liberals and enemies of the people. I am certain that this will be easier for us than it was for our fathers. The scream of the twelve-inch shrapnel is more penetrating than the hiss from a thousand Liberal newspaper vipers. Therefore let them go on with their hissing.

    […]

    By means of the Liberal Press, the Liberals spread the colossal falsehood about ‘American Militarism’ throughout the world and tried to inculpate America by every possible means, while at the same time the Democratic Party refused to assent to the measures that were necessary for the adequate training of our national defense forces. The appalling crime thus committed by these people ought to have been obvious to everybody who foresaw that in case of war the whole nation would have to be called to arms and that, because of the mean huckstering of these noble ‘representatives of the people’, as they called themselves, millions of Americans would have to face enemies ill-equipped and insufficiently trained.

    […]

    What soon gave me cause for very serious consideration were the activities of the Liberals in certain branches of life, into the mystery of which I penetrated little by little. Was there any shady undertaking, any form of foulness, especially in cultural life, in which at least one Liberal did not participate? On putting the probing knife carefully to that kind of abscess one immediately discovered, like a maggot in a putrescent body, a little Liberal who was often blinded by the sudden light.

    In my eyes the charge against Liberalism became a grave one the moment I discovered the Liberal activities in the Press, in art, in literature and the theatre. All unctuous protests were now more or less futile. One needed only to look at the posters announcing the hideous productions of the cinema and theatre, and study the names of the authors who were highly lauded there in order to become permanently adamant on Liberal questions. Here was a pestilence, a moral pestilence, with which the public was being infected.

    […]

    I was happy at last to know for certain that a Liberal is not an American.

    "
    Mein Kampf second edition, Joe McPherson, a former producer of Thom's radio program. Spoof of Mein Kampf with "Liberal" replacing "Jew" and America replacing Germany. Chapter 10.
  • Article: The Myth of National Victimhood - All Wrapped and Delivered for Christmas, by Thom Hartmann. As well as the excerpt above, Thom read excerpts from Milton Mayer which he included in this article.
  • Bumper Music: What a Wonderful World, Louis Armstrong. Thanks.
  • These are the incremental steps, the road Bush was taking us down. People like Lyndie England were jailed, but not those above. How about contractors?
  • Victoria Jones of Talk Radio News. EPA to tackle CO2 and five other greenhouse gases as a danger to public health and welfare. International climate conference, saying we now want to be engaged, so pressure on Congress to pass a bill this year. James Hansen, 350 ppm threshold. Appeals Court halted oil and gas drilling off Alaska, as Bush failed to consider the environment. Don't ask don't tell. Gibbs says will move on, repeal some time. Gates used different words; he said "if we do it" it is important to do it right, get people's feelings on it. Maybe he is just being cautious. Society is changing on gay rights. Other countries managed. Raul Castro said he was willing to talk about human rights, freedom of the press, political prisoners, everything. Hillary said OK.

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