Daily Topics - Thursday July 15th, 2010

Quote of the day: The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs. -- Thomas Jefferson

Hour One: What the hell is happening in the Gulf...is there a conspiracy of silence? Independent journalist/author Dahr Jamail will be here www.dahrjamailiraq.com; Plus, Why is war contractor KBR getting an immunity deal? Congressman Earl Blumenauer tells Thom why the Pentagon has some explaining to do http://blumenauer.house.gov

Hour Two: Wall Street reform: is the Senate full of prostitutes or are there any real statesmen left? Rolling Stone Magazine's Matt Taibbi will be here www.rollingstone.com

Hour Three: The burqa - free expression or the ultimate tool for bankrobbers? Thom challenges John Dalhusien of Amnesty Internationa www.amnesty.org

Comments

j.sea's picture
j.sea 10 years 15 weeks ago
#1

... was up til 3 last night reading The Halliburton Agenda by Dan Briody (author of The Iron Triangle).
Nightmarish reading. KBR, Halliburton subsidiary has a diabolical, criminal, very political, century-long history that travels the globe -- from underground in Libya, to the route of the planned Caspian Sea Pipeline through the Balkans, fond retreat of certain schemers. Couldn't sleep at all after reading that the company that just destroyed one quarter of our nation's coastline and life-source waters was paid a king's ransom in unaccounted for money to drill to the earth's core and sample the magma there --- ! ! ! Now there is a blow-out. Wretched greed, when will thy thrist be quenched? When will you respect the gift of Life and the Planet we all live together on? We Americans are simply pawns. Will our few remaining trustworthy leaders not stop the lock-step march of the Endless War & Hate machine in time?

Zero G's picture
Zero G 10 years 15 weeks ago
#2

Congrats to Nils - Maxrot for member of the day, yesterday!

Zero G's picture
Zero G 10 years 15 weeks ago
#3

Yesterday on the chatroom I was taken to task for calling Obama a war criminal. SInce the chatroom isn't a good forum for defining terms, I'll post this here, and try to point to this post if so again challenged:

US War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity and “Change”

The brutality with which the US government exercises its war of terror is condemned both by the court of international public opinion and by the principles of international law governing human rights. Wars of aggression in Iraq and Afghanistan and the torture of detainees are clearly defined as war crimes by the UN Declaration of Human Rights, the Geneva Conventions, the Convention against Torture and other treaties to which the United States is a signatory. Under the cover of "national security," other countries in the region are being drawn into the on-going wars.

The Principles of International Law, recognized in the Charter of the Nuremberg Tribunal and in the Judgment of the Tribunal, provide no defense for war crimes. Similarly, the Convention Against Torture, which defines torture as a war crime, provides that no exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat or war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.

The prohibition on war crimes is absolute, not relative, meaning that there is no justification for war crimes despite the particular circumstances in their respective countries. U.S. Justice Robert Jackson proclaimed at Nuremberg: “No grievances or policies will justify resort to aggressive war. It is utterly renounced and condemned as an instrument of policy. More @ http://warcriminalswatch.org/

The webpage offers a critique of the change that the Obama administration has thus far wrought.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#4

This morning it occurred to me that maybe a good way of countering a lot of the Republican't candidate ads would be to use reverse psychology. Such as, "I have done exhaustive research and I can safely say I can find no evidence that my opponent is an idiot." or "Contrary to the opinion of many there is no provable direct relationship between my opponent and the massive amounts of corporate money."

Does anyone here think I have something, or do you believe in moon monkeys from mars?

Please reply yes or no to the first part of the question only. ;-)

N

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#5

@Zero G, see hanging out in the chat room and abandoning us here on the blog isn't such a great idea. I won the book on an off hand comment about cats, CATS my friend. Of course that just lends credence to my theory that they are indeed the Superior Race on Planet Earth. Mittens the Magnificent will take over soon, after a nap in the sun and a nice stretch.

Heck at least if you had posted that Obama is a war criminal comment here, at least Gerald would have been your best friend, and probably would have found a few other supporters. On the other hand, sounds like you ruffled the feathers of the chat room, good on ya for that, can't let them live in an echo chamber forever ;-)

N

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#6

@Zero G: Unfortunately I agree about Obama re: #3, in fact, there's only 2 Presidents in my lifetime, maybe just one, who didn't deserve impeachment for high crimes and misdemeanors. Eisenhower, probably not guilty. Carter, maybe not guilty. Carter did supply arms to Indonesia to enable them to commit genocide in East Timor and elsewhere; thats his only moral failure to my knowledge. The rest are clearly guilty.

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#7

Violating treaties is breaking the law.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#8

@harry, awww c'mon all the presidents break treaties, then they take the military out for a joy ride. Its a coming to power thing, give them a little time and they'll mature. ;-)

N

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#9

My buddy, a cop, said,"we don't catch the smart ones."

Like the prohibition of alcohol, the "drug war" industry is making billionaires out of criminals.

camplunalinda's picture
camplunalinda 10 years 15 weeks ago
#10

128 Radio Staions in South Dakota --got Thom? -FROM Richard Winger @ ballot-access news.orgU.S. Senator in South Dakota Has No Opponents in General Election

July 12th, 2010

This South Dakota newspaper story focuses on the fact that U.S. Senator John Thune, a Republican, has no opponents on the November ballot. No Democrat filed to run for U.S. Senate this year.

The Constitution Party is on the ballot in South Dakota, but it did not run anyone for U.S. Senate either. Whether the party’s candidate for Governor will be on the ballot depends on the outcome of the party’s ballot access case that is being heard in federal court on July 15.

No independent candidate qualified in South Dakota for U.S. Senate this year, and the petition deadline was June 8. Thanks to Political Wire for the link. South Dakota does not permit write-ins.

j.sea's picture
j.sea 10 years 15 weeks ago
#11

"Utah agencies probe alleged illegal immigrant list

By BROCK VERGAKIS (AP) – 12 hours ago

SALT LAKE CITY — Investigators examined records at several state agencies Wednesday to find the origins of a list being circulated around Utah that contains the names and personal information of 1,300 purported illegal immigrants and demands that they be deported immediately...

...The list contains Social Security numbers, birth dates, workplaces, addresses and phone numbers. Names of children are included, along with due dates of pregnant women on the list.....

.....Democratic state Sen. Luz Robles of Salt Lake City said she's worried the release of the list will distract from a substantive policy debate at a forum on immigration with the governor next week.'This is one of those issues that's volatile. I don't know what's coming next,' she said. 'It was obviously a very calculated process and that is concerning.'...... "

Link to full article: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jqfjMEGvQIw-THl1W1KVwyfudpVgD9GV3JUG0

The key word there is "calculated". The KBR/Halliburton machine needs us to hate each other in order to keep making billions at the expense of kind, creative, family-loving, co-operative people all over the world. This shameless attempt to inflame hate and fear is organized and conscious and directed. More agencies than the Mineral and Mining Agency have been infiltrated by Bush Era plants -- and they aren't green.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#12

Although it's illegal to sell military equipment to states who use them against their own populations, USA has gotten away with shipping the arms to an ally who in turn ships the weapons to places like Indonesia.

Same effect, but with plausible denial added.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#13

@Thom, I voted for Perot... still don't know if I did the right thing, but the movement surrounding Perot led me have hope for alternatives to the two party system.

N

j.sea's picture
j.sea 10 years 15 weeks ago
#14

.Right Gene, and... how about Blackwater in Louisiana? Just use foils like KBR/Halliburton to fund your own Corporate Owned Multinational private army with all the toys and spy gear -- and deploy them against citizens and then over-bill them. Nice System.

gerald's picture
gerald 10 years 15 weeks ago
#15

Military can give immunity to corporations for murdering our soldiers. The Supreme Court gives immunity to corporations for murdering Americans. Yes, there are people who are above the law.

Obama is way overhead in his role as president. We are seeing more disasters, such as Katrina, oil, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Gitmo, financial deregulations, and OBAMA.

scottgee1 10 years 15 weeks ago
#16

20% of CoC donations go to ???

If ~80% of the money the Chamber of Commerce donates goes to Rethuglicans, who gets the reamaining 20%? Dems? If so, who? It would provide a ready-made list of who needs to be replaced/opposed when elections occur.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#17

Saint Molly Ivins wrote of the class of people who were too rich to go to jail.

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#18

re: #16 some of that $ goes to third parties, like the Greens, to split the demo vote....

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#19

If you own a gun, you can rob a bank. If you own a bank, you can rob everyone. - Bill Maher

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#20

Harry Anslinger showed up in Congress with evidence of the terror of pot. The evidence was a newspaper article that he had written.

gerald's picture
gerald 10 years 15 weeks ago
#21

@Gene Savory, if I was younger, I would try to own a bank. I could rob everyone and never go to jail. What a great country for crooks and thieves!

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#22

When I was searched by TSA in Dulles Air Port, the investigator wanted to know why I had a ski mask in my luggage. The fact that it was cold at my destination (O'Hare) didn't cross his mind. These are guys who would think the only reason a person owns a pair of gloves is to prevent leaving finger prints.

scandi's picture
scandi 10 years 15 weeks ago
#23

I'm waiting for some republican to say that since the Gulf is a dead zone anyway, the oil corps might as well drill as much as they want to for as long as they want to with no restrictions. Republicans may not say it out loud but I wouldn't be surprised if some haven't already had this cross their minds.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#24

@Gerald: A very popular book, The Screwing Of The Average Man by David Hapgood, examines the hustles that are part of our lives.

Dr. Owen Muelder told me he had no problem with the ladder of success, with the exception that those who go up first try to cut the rungs out behind them.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 10 years 15 weeks ago
#25

In the movie "Minority Report," people were identified by retina scans. There are advocates for implanting RFID chips in people.

Welcome to the asylum.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#26

re Burka, how about if you stipulated that the facial part of the Burka to be semi transparent, enough to obscure the face from distance, yet transparent enough for features to be recognizable up close? Compromise, has that completely gone out the window of modern society?

N

j.sea's picture
j.sea 10 years 15 weeks ago
#27

Thank you Thom -- you are a Light in the Desert.

iman2000_us's picture
iman2000_us 10 years 15 weeks ago
#28

Hi Maxrot - parts of the facial coverings are transparent. In fact there are two layers, one transparent, and one more solid.

iman2000_us's picture
iman2000_us 10 years 15 weeks ago
#29

Hi Maxrot - parts of the facial coverings are transparent. In fact there are two layers, one transparent, and one more solid.

Zero G's picture
Zero G 10 years 15 weeks ago
#30

The Burqas I saw in Afghanistan were very difficult to see into.

Nils, Wel the chatroom is somewhat addictive. Though this format is easier in which to post coherent remarks on.

As to the Cat comment, yeah well when I got my "member of the day" notice, it was for a quote on pidgeons from Jim Hightower, not one of my own obvious brilliance. ;^)>

ps Have patience and email Shawn...

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#31

@iman2000_us, I'm just proposing a possible solution, based on compromise. Trying to think outside the box and all that. Modification may or may not be acceptable by either party, but we'll never know until we propose and counter-propose, etc... until both sides come to an agreement.

N

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#32

@Zero G. perhaps the we're just a strategic post in a Galatic War, Pigeons on one side and Cats on the other. Thom has failed to acknowledge that while pigeons are outside all important world Goverment meetings, the cats have infiltrated the homes of many leaders. Take Socks and the Clinton White House. I'm not sure how dogs figure into all this yet, but the puzzle is coming together.

N

iman2000_us's picture
iman2000_us 10 years 15 weeks ago
#33

Hello everyone - I would like to clarify one major misunderstanding regarding the covering of Muslim women. I am a practicing Muslim woman who chose to cover after understanding the reasoning behind the command to do so. It has nothing to do with the woman having super sexual charges as some author claims or anything else. First and foremost it's an order from God that is to be obeyed. Simple as that. You will find the same order in the Bible/Corinthians. I don't recall the exact verse number, but I believe it does state for believing women to cover themselves or to shave their heads if they are truthful or something to that matter. Contrary to popular belief, Muslim women are not forced by the men to cover. Does it happen in certain areas? Yes, of course. Unfortunately, not all Muslims have the correct understanding of our religion, and thus misinterpret and behave in a way that has nothing to do with the teachings of the Quran and the Prophet.

Aside from the covering being God’s order, one can go into further argumentation in support of it such as:

· The cover is a protection for women as well as men. For women, from their own desires and vanity to compete for better looks and for men, it protects them from behaving in a way that is not appropriate.

· Let’s be honest, women are objectified as sexual beings, feminism and all, we have not really evolved. The cover provides respect and dignity for the woman, as it forces others to deal with the women’s intellect, rather than her physical appearance.

· Men are visual and are attracted to what they see. When women parade in front of them wearing clothing that is revealing, it causes them to have a sexual reaction. This is a biological reaction. Mixing of genders freely in that state can cause marriages to break up, affairs outside of wedlock, and lots of other illicit behavior.

· It is the woman’s choice to show her beauty to whom she chooses as a partner, instead of having everyone appraise her like some object on the market. Of course, that means marriage and not anything else.

There are many other points as to why more women choose to cover. Believe it or not, but most of the converts to Islam are women, as they like the freedoms given to them by the religion, which I know is never being mentioned by the media, as the portrayal of Muslims in general is one as terrorist, infidel hater, women basher etc. We hardly ever hear all the good, which is 99% vs. the 1% that wrecks havoc.

I sincerely urge everyone to get a better understanding of the things that we fear or bother us before passing judgment on them. If nothing else, we all should be able to agree to disagree in a respectful manner. There is so much good that can be done in the world, yet sadly all of us humans always hang on to the negative aspects of it, instead of cherishing the vast beauty and mercy of God bestowed upon all of us.

I just wanted to state the facts. Feel free to disagree with me. Thank you for your time. Salam, Peace, Shalom

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#34

re: #32: dogs play the "straight man"...

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#35

@iman2000_us sooo.. compromise is not an option?

N

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#36

@harry, I'm thinking the dogs are mercenaries for hire by either side. KBR or isit BaRK?

N

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#37

huh! whenever i catch a cat doing something evil, the dog just stands there wagging his tail, oblivious to it all

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#38

Makes sense doesn't it, such dogs must be on the Cat payroll.

N

iman2000_us's picture
iman2000_us 10 years 15 weeks ago
#39

Max - that is not what I am saying. Compromise is an option as long as it there is no way religiously to compromise. Quite frankly based on my own personal understanding of the religion and my minimal knowledge about things, I think that especially in the West my sisters should think about not wearing the face veil. However, that is my personal opinion on it. There is supporting evindence for and against it. It needs to be further researched by our scholars.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#40

@iman2000_us OK, compromise is an option, maybe not my proposal, but something.

Here in the west the majority of women cover their faces with a paint like substance to distort their features, but my understanding is that is done so to accentuate, exaggerate or just plain disguise their natural look. (Yes I'm kidding around here.)

How people present themselves has never been of interest to me, I personally don't wish to dictate to anyone what they should/shouldn't wear. I'm also wary of anyone or any book that deems it necessary to do so. If someone wishes to completely cover themselves, or walk around completely naked, I ultimately don't care, however since I rarely see either extreme, I may find it difficult not to stare, whether to my pleasure or horror.

N

iman2000_us's picture
iman2000_us 10 years 15 weeks ago
#41

LOL - Fair enough.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#42

Well iman2000_us, I'm glad you can appreciate my somewhat quirky sense of humor. Hope you join us on the blog more often, insightful commentary is always welcomed here.

N

Zero G's picture
Zero G 10 years 15 weeks ago
#43

Iman2000_us

Let’s be honest, women are objectified as sexual beings, feminism and all, we have not really evolved. The cover provides respect and dignity for the woman, as it forces others to deal with the women’s intellect, rather than her physical appearance.

Actually, haven't we evolved to be sexual creatures? Isn't that part of what being human is? In fact, without that sexuality, would we have evolved or existed at all?
The thought of a creator being who would paint such a masterpiece and then say, "But don't look," doesn't seem to jibe with me. But, I have no problems with you dressing as you wish.

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#44
Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#45

Were only at a Trillion, well heck in that case lets throw in a couple of more countries and have a really big show.

N

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#46

re: #43: YEs! we are genetically programmed to reproduce at all cost. Our whole nature is to reproduce and successfully raise young. We would not be here otherwise. We are also genetically programmed against monogamy, and even our reproductive systems conspire against monogamy.

harry ashburn 10 years 15 weeks ago
#47

re: #45, problem is, US spends more than all the rest of the world combined, so, a lot of countries would have to chip in.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#48

Anyone else here find the irony in Dick Cheney has no pulse and yet lives. He's the UNDEAD, Heaven and Hell don't want him (can't blame them either).

We're at the end times everybody, the dead are walking the Earth.

N

iman2000_us's picture
iman2000_us 10 years 15 weeks ago
#49

True - we are sexual creatures. However, like everything else in life we have rules to live by. Some are man made some are devine, if one is a believer of any faith. There is always do's and don't do's for everything.

On a different note, I do appreciate you not having a problem with my dresscode. That is very reassuring, as I have encountered the opposite side as well. Trust me it was not pleasant.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 10 years 15 weeks ago
#50

@harry, re: #47, I meant we can afford to go to war with more countries (sarcastically of course).

N

Because We Don't Have A Right to Vote...

Thom plus logo In America, the country that is supposed to be the world's premier democratic republic, citizens do not have an absolute right to vote.

Because we don't have a right to vote, red state governors can radically cut back on the number of polling places and voting machines so that working class people are forced to stand in line for five, six, in some cases 10 hours to vote.
From The Thom Hartmann Reader:
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From Cracking the Code:
"Thom Hartmann ought to be bronzed. His new book sets off from the same high plane as the last and offers explicit tools and how-to advice that will allow you to see, hear, and feel propaganda when it's directed at you and use the same techniques to refute it. His book would make a deaf-mute a better communicator. I want him on my reading table every day, and if you try one of his books, so will you."
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