Tuesday, February 27, 2007

FEAR FACTORY: Assassinating Cheney

The Taliban are allegedly taking credit for a botched assassination attempt against US VP Dick Cheney in Afghanistan. It is tragic that 23 people died, and the intended target simply heard "a loud boom".

Was this at least a propaganda victory for the Taliban?

Doubt it. There was very little chance that a suicide bomber would have gotten close enough to the veep to successfully off him. This shows the group's ability to hit US bases, but they have been gaining momentum for months. There is nothing new here.

Was this a propaganda victory for the Fear Factory?

Probably. Rallying cries for revenge will trumpet throughout the right-wing media. The war mongers will use this as an excuse to push for the Bush/Cheney Iraq War escalation plan.

With today's record "selloff" in the stock market, a new panic will emerge and the talking heads will push for American consumers to buy stocks, goods and back the nation's imperialist agenda.

Look for the Fear Factory to go into full effect over the coming weeks...

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Friday, February 23, 2007

Dropping Out

How did he expect to raise any money with those ugly campaign posters?

It's February 2007, 17 months before the presidential election of 2008, and the race already has a casualty. The AP reports that Iowa's former governor, Democrat Tom Vilsack is calling it quits.

"It is money and only money that is the reason we are leaving today," Vilsack told reporters at a news conference, later adding, "We have a debt we're going to have to work our way through."

Vilsack, 56, left office in January and traveled to early voting states, but he attracted neither the attention nor the campaign cash of his top-tier rivals - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Sen. Barack Obama and John Edwards. He even faced obstacles in his home state.

In the most recent financial documents, Vilsack reported raising more than $1.1 million in the last seven weeks of 2006 but only had around $396,000 in the bank. Some campaign finance experts contend candidates will need $20 million by June 2007 to remain viable.

The money, in what analysts say will be the most expensive presidential campaign in history, is separating the coulda-beens from the also-rans even before some candidates have even declared their intention to run.

Greens? Libertarians? Are you fundraising yet???

But where did Vilsack's million go? Check out: www.tomvilsack08.com

Obama Isn't Black?? Part 3

Imani Perry raises some good points in a recent Afro-Netizen article:

I don’t believe the authenticity problem lies with African Americans. The authenticity problem lies with white Americans. The real question is: Why have White pundits, journalists and newscasters been so eager to comment on Obama’s being biracial and the son of an immigrant, rather than his history of civil rights activism or his long time involvement in African American social and political communities? Does it reveal a desire, among whites, that he not be authentically black (whatever that means), but somehow “different?”

The fixation on Obama as “different” appears to be an effort to exceptionalize him. He is seen as acceptable, in part, because he is considered to be unlike other African Americans, and in particular, African American men, who have been so widely commented upon as a “social problem” in the most prestigious news media in recent months. Joe Biden got in trouble for saying what many Americans are thinking, and that is a much bigger problem than a foot in the mouth.

While there is no particular tradition of African Americans being suspicious of immigrant political activists and leaders, there is a long tradition of African Americans being suspicious of Black leaders who seem to be eagerly touted by Whites as the “next best thing.” Why, we wonder, do people who seem to hold animosity for us as a group, make an exception for this individual?

Good question... Why is Obama being treated as if he is the second coming?

I'm still not drinking the Kool-Aid...

Click HERE to read all of Imani's post

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Martial Law: Coming to America

I was minding my own business, just driving to a meeting when I heard a brief headline on Democracy Now:
In news from Capitol Hill, Congress is coming under criticism for approving a little noticed provision last year that makes it easier for President Bush to declare martial law and to send US troops into American cities. At the administration's request, Congress approved the changes to a law known as the Insurrection Act without ever holding a public hearing.

Under the new law, the president now has the authority to use both active-duty armed forces and the National Guard on American soil -- not just during a rebellion -- but also a natural disaster, terrorist attack, pandemic or other chaotic situation.

All 50 of the nation's governors have opposed the rule changes. Earlier this month Senators Patrick Leahy, the chair of the Judiciary Committee, and Republican Christopher Bond introduced legislation to repeal the changes Congress approved last year.
WHAT??? Wait, how did I miss this?

Oh, yeah. This bill was signed into law on the same day as the infamous Military Commissions Act of 2006. I was so outraged that my Democratic Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow had voted "Yes" on that measure that I didn't notice this other law. While I was writing Stabenow a heated letter telling her that she had lost my vote forever, the Bush regime was getting away with murder... again!!

The Macon Telegraph
reports it like this:

Buried in Public Law 109-364, section 1076 gives the president the green light to take command of National Guard units to act to "restore public order and enforce the laws of the United States when, as a result of a natural disaster, epidemic, or other serious public health emergency, terrorist attack or incident, or other condition in any state (emphasis ours) domestic violence has occurred to such an extent that the constituted authorities of the state ... are incapable of maintaining public order."

Additionally, taking command of the National Guard is permissible any time the president determines a "state has refused to enforce applicable laws."

The president now has damn near dictatorial powers - the power to torture, suspend habeas corpus, wage preemptive, illegal war and to order the armed forces of the nation into American cities for any reason he sees fit!

On February 7, Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Christopher Bond (R-MO) introduced S 513, a bill which would restore the original Insurrection Act language. A similar bill, HR 869, was introduced in the House by Republican Tom Davis of Virginia, co-chair of the House National Guard committee.

The Army Times quotes Davis:

“This usurpation of power by the executive branch is unhealthy, unwise and unworkable,” said Davis. “Governors know best when and where and how to deploy the Guard within their borders, and only in the most extreme cases should this power be abridged.”

Davis warned about the potential for abuse of presidential authority, saying the Bush administration tried after Hurricane Katrina and after the 2001 terrorist attacks to put active-duty military commanders in charge over state and local officials. “It’s been the National Guard’s job since the birth of the republic to be the governors’ homeland response force.” Davis said. “The system we had in place has worked well for this entire time. There was no reason to change it, and now, there is no reason not to change it back.”

This is insanity. Congress MUST repeal these acts immediately!

Click HERE to contact your Representative and ask them to co-sponsor HR 869.
Click HERE to contact your Senators and ask them to co-sponsor S 513

If you are one of the few people who still believes that the Bush/Cheney regime isn't the greatest threat to American security, then you need your head examined. This is clearly not a partisan issue. This is an Constitutional issue. This is an American freedom issue.

Forget all this nonsense about the election of 2008. We've got to concentrate on getting George Bush and Dick Cheney out of the White House immediately! The World Can't Wait!

Visit AfterDowningStreet.org for more information about Bush regime abuses.
Visit ImpeachForPeace.org to get more information about impeaching Cheney and Bush.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Obama Isn't Black?? Part 2

The cards are on the table.

Barack Obama's 2008 presidential candidacy is going to be about race. I'm sure he doesn't want it that way, but that is how it's going to play out.

Already his ethnicity is being attacked from all sides. I've blogged previously about Black folks like Debra Dickerson of Salon.com who say Obama isn't Black.

Now the darling of race-baiting conservatives, Rush Limbaugh, encourages the biracial Obama to renounce his Blackness and declare that he is white.

Think Progress reports:
Yesterday on his radio show, right-wing host Rush Limbaugh derided Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) — who is biracial — for saying, “If you look African-American in this society, you’re treated as an African-American.”

Limbaugh claimed that this statement meant Obama didn’t want to be Black and should “renounce it”: “If it’s not something you want to be, if you didn’t decide it, renounce it, become white!” He added, “If you don’t like it, you can switch. Well, that’s the way I see it. He’s got 50-50 in there. Say, ‘No, I’m white.’”


Read the Think Progress post HERE

American white folks created the "one drop rule" centuries ago. If you have one drop of African blood, you're Black. If you could pass for white, you could identify yourself as such until someone found out who your people were. Then you became an outcast on both sides.

For the record: Barack Obama is Black.
For the record: Tiger Woods is Black whether he claims to be or not.
For the record: Rae Dawn-Chong is Black.

Of course, this is all a distraction. What about the issues?

I hate to be a cynic, but I don't think the United States is ready for a Black man or a white woman to become president. It doesn't matter whether Barack and Hilary are the best candidates or not (of course, I don't like either of them at this point). America is still too racist and too sexist to elect them.

But let's get the conversation out of the way now, so we can get down to the real business of presidential politics.

What do YOU think? Is America ready for a Black man or white woman to be president?

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Obama Isn't Black?? Part 1

Originally posted by Nadir at LastChocolateCity.com

ObamaLet me start by saying that I am not sipping the Barack Obama Kool-Aid. I agree with Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report who calls the junior Senator from Illinois “…an imperialist at heart who offers George Bush at least another year or two to wage war in Iraq, while warning Iraqis that they can expect no more American ‘coddling’”.

But when people like Debra Dickerson say “Obama isn’t Black”, it just confuses the issue.

According to Dickerson’s Jan. 22 article on Salon.com:

“Black,” in our political and social reality, means those descended from West African slaves. Voluntary immigrants of African descent (even those descended from West Indian slaves) are just that, voluntary immigrants of African descent with markedly different outlooks on the role of race in their lives and in politics. At a minimum, it can’t be assumed that a Nigerian cabdriver and a third-generation Harlemite have more in common than the fact a cop won’t bother to make the distinction. They’re both “black” as a matter of skin color and DNA, but only the Harlemite, for better or worse, is politically and culturally Black, as we use the term.


“Black” refers to skin color. Our ancestors in Africa were called “Black” before they were kidnapped and shipped to the Americas. Therefore, Obama’s Kenyan ancestors were Black.

Perhaps Obama’s cultural upbringing isn’t a typical American “Black” experience because he had a Kenyan immigrant father and was raised by a European mother, but this only makes him “multi-cultural” and/or “bi-racial”. When he goes down south to campaign in South Carolina or Texas, they are still going to call him by the same name many Chicago rappers would use to address him.

No, I don’t mean “brother”.

Culturally, Obama’s upbringing makes him no less “Black” than a descendant of West African slaves who grew up in suburban Iowa or rural Kansas. And perhaps Ms. Dickerson isn’t aware that the culture of Africans in America (Okay. “Black folks”) has spread to Africa with soul music, jazz and hip hop. There may be more cultural similarities among our African brethren than she thinks.

Ms. Dickerson, you don’t have to like Obama, but why in the world would you want to confuse white people (and Black Americans) more than they already are? If you don’t consider yourself African American (which Obama is) or an American of African descent (which Obama is), that’s fine.

But let’s keep the topic away from race. Neither Black folks nor white folks should give Obama a pass because of his skin. Hold his stance on the issues up to the light. That’s when we’ll all see his true colors.

Watch Debra Dickerson confuse the issue and herself on The Colbert Report

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Dr. Dahlia Wasfi

I met Dr. Dahlia Wasfi at Camp Democracy this summer. As a medical doctor of Jewish and Iraqi heritage, she has a unique perspective on the Iraq war.

She has visited her father's family in Iraq several times. Dr. Wasfi left a promising medical career to devote her life to ending the US war against the Iraqi people.

Click HERE to see footage of her speaking at an Iraq War forum

Click HERE to visit her website, www.liberatethis.com.

Under the Radar

The best time to pay attention to the news out of Washington is on Fridays. That's when government agencies issue reports or statements that they don't want American citizens to know about.

Yesterday's release of a Pentagon internal investigation found that the Pentagon acted "inappropriately" when it sexed up the evidence in advance of the Iraq War. But the mainstream media has largely ignored the story, instead choosing to display Anna Nicole Smith's clevage.
Pentagon officials undercut the intelligence community in the run-up to the U.S. invasion of Iraq by insisting in briefings to the White House that there was a clear relationship between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaida, the Defense Department's inspector general said Friday.

Acting Inspector General Thomas F. Gimble told the Senate Armed Services Committee that the office headed by former Pentagon policy chief Douglas J. Feith took "inappropriate" actions in advancing conclusions on al-Qaida connections not backed up by the nation's intelligence agencies.
This report offers further proof that the Bush administration pushed us into war with lies and deceipt. A war where a sixth US helicopter in three weeks was downed - another widely under reported story on Friday.

Thank God for the Internet! Otherwise, we would be forced to believe that the most important news in the world is that three men have claimed to be the father of Anna Nicole's baby.