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Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Jul 8, 2004, 03:14 PM
Number of posts: 10,336

Journal Archives

Is there anyone here from DFA (past or present) who would be willing to engage me in

conversation? I would actually probably take it offline somehow, either through email or chat or something. I am very interested in finding out a few things...If you're out there, contact me! And thank you!

U.N. Chemical Weapons Inspectors Leave Damascus, Syria

Source: Huffington Post/Reuters

By Steve Holland and Catherine Bremer

WASHINGTON/PARIS, Aug 30 (Reuters) - The United States made clear on Friday that it would punish Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for the "brutal and flagrant" chemical weapons attack that it says killed more than 1,400 people in Damascus last week.

"We cannot accept a world where women and children and innocent civilians are gassed on a terrible scale," President Barack Obama told reporters at the White House.

He said the United States was still in the planning process for a "limited, narrow" military response that would not involve "boots on the ground" or be open-ended. He set no timetable for action.

In a sign the United States may be preparing to act, a senior State Department official said Secretary of State John Kerry spoke on Friday to the foreign ministers of Britain, Egypt, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates as well as to the secretary general of the Arab League.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/31/un-inspectors-damascus-syria_n_3846837.html

long article, much more at link.

Report: Heritage Foundation Barred From GOP House Group’s Meetings

Members of the one of the leading conservative think tanks have reportedly been barred from attending a Republican House group's weekly meetings after the Farm Bill went down in flames earlier this summer.

According to a report Wednesday in National Journal, the Republican Study Committee is no longer allowing employees for the Heritage Foundation to attend the meetings. Heritage, currently led by former Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), had been a fixture at the meetings until last month when the RSC, comprised of 172 conservative GOP House members, made the change.

The move came after the House voted in June to reject a Farm Bill that would have slashed $2 billion annually from food stamps. The think tank's lobbying arm, Heritage Action, called for the bill to be split into two parts: one to cover agricultural policy and another that dealt with SNAP, the food stamp program. Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-IN), a member of the RSC, proposed an amendment that would have accomplished just that but it failed.

Heritage Action then warned members against voting for the bill, ultimately leading to 62 Republicans joining Democrats to defeat the legislation despite majority GOP support. Conservative groups such as Heritage and Club For Growth celebrated the demise of the Farm Bill, a major blow to House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), who supported the legislation.

just one more small paragraph more at the link: http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/entry/report-heritage-foundation-barred-from-gop-caucus-meetings?ref=fpb

ABC News opened the 4 am hour with the official "Crisis in Syria" banner...

not a media pro, so I don't know what else to call it. The march ahead continues apace...

Hey since we're spying on everyone, can we go ahead and get to the part where we spy on a

bunch of people (I use that term loosely) in Texas, for example? Or Wyoming? or other places where known cabals hostile to the US government reside? At least we'd be focused on real threats to US democratic state....

I have seen it quoted over and over again, here and elsewhere, that there are 1 million spies with

top secret clearance. Not sure the source of this, or if it's true. But assuming it is accurate, by my calculations my county alone would have 437 spies (presuming they were distributed evenly by population, which also probably is not how it is done, but for the sake of argument, lets pretend that's how it's done for a minute). 437. Now, I'm not sure what to think about this information, but I do know this...That's a LOT of spies. nt

We have all the nuclear power we could ever possibly need or use:


As a Democrat (life-long, labor,union), I gotta say if we can't coalesce simply around the fact that

we must stand together and insist that the Constitution be followed, that secrecy and Second Supreme Courts (unaccountable to anyone but the Chief Justice), and recognize that the the power itself is being wrested, fingernail by fingernail, from us, the voters, then we will not survive as a party, nor as a nation.

Every single thing that has happened since the installation of GWB has been patently illegal, no matter how well-intentioned. We need to stand firm, as we did back during those years here. In other words, "Snap out of it!". We are in the eye of the storm itself, so don't get all bogged down in the minute (sp) of the details of each indivial outrage, if you will. The people suffering from outrage fatigue have been in abundance here over many months and years now.

That's what they want. To wear you down. Make you give up. They actually probably can't believe it themselves, that they have gotten away with it all for this long. We need as many Democrats to stand up and be proud, and stand up in your communities, go to meetings, meet folks, mingle with like-minded folks, help out!

The American public at large is fed up with it all, the narrative at the moment is that Republicans are on the ropes. While it's a long way off, things can change, and not sure how true that is anyway that they are on the ropes, but if they are...then now is the time to get involved. Volunteer for the party. Volunteer for a campaign. Register Voters. Canvass. Write letters to the editor. Why? Because your country needs you right now, as badly as it ever needed anyone! You are important in your community, simply because you are a part of it! The only reason our party exists is because good people before you did just that!

To just simply accept things as "that's the way it is" is not the way forward. We need to insist that in this new age of constant war, constant terror, constant threats and constant surveillance, it's not enough to just now begin discussions on new safeguards for things we don't even know are gong on.

We must insist, first, that our government be accountable to the people, and to the letter of the law...and that if that is not enough to protect us, and that all these cirque-de-soliel secret, patently unconstitutional courts are really necessary, then we need to have a fully informed national debate about it, and we need to adopt additional Amendments or even re-write the document itself to match modern times.

I am not a radical. I am a Democrat. I am an ordinary American, with nothing to hide from them, yet I don't like it. I can't explain it, but I just know they do NOT need to vacuum up every possible clue, and it appears they are doing just that. I can say, without a doubt, that there is a better way. I just know exactly what I have seen, we all have, and we are just suffering from a long period of Stockholm Syndrome, or some such mass effect as a nation, and through our politics. I don't want my government, the one I am part owner in, the one which acts in my name, to be associated with knowing every single thing about me, right down to when it is I might be taking dump, and which hand I wipe with.

I don't want it knowing that about you, either. That's not who we are as a nation. they know it, too. They just think they actually have that much control over the masses. They would be dumb-asses to think such a thing, not as long as the internet exists, not as long as free communication allows people to freely assemble and associate. Look at things like the Arab Spring, or the thing in Mexico, etc. It just happens.

It's not like there's an "organization" behind it all. It's sometimes spontaneous, it just happens. So, I'm hoping that politically, we Democrats are ready this time. I know I am. Are you? If those of us that hang out on DU are not locally engaged, we will not keep the party's feet to the fire. If our voices aren't right along with some of the establishment folks, then we will keep getting, for example, McCauliffe's. (Not picking on him, I'll hold my nose and take him if it helps us gain the seat, but I doubt he would ever challenge the security state elements of our government in any meaningful way).

They say you can't change an organization from outside, but from within. So why not get involved with the local party this cycle? Am I being a Pollyanna? Or am I reading the tea-leaves wrong? I think right now is the *perfect time to get something done, after all these years (12 now and counting). Thoughts?

Edward Snowden Was No Coward To Flee U.S., Pentagon Papers Lawyer Says

Source: Huffington Post

WASHINGTON -- National Security Agency whistle-blower Edward Snowden has been slammed by some as a “coward” for refusing to turn himself in to U.S. authorities and face espionage charges for shedding light on secret surveillance programs. But one of the lawyers involved in the Vietnam-era Pentagon Papers case has said that Snowden was justified in seeking sanctuary in Russia.

In a Friday interview on "The Agenda" on SiriusXM Progress, Daniel Sheehan said that Snowden wouldn’t receive a fair trial if he returned to the U.S.

“No American citizen in their right mind would trust the honesty and the objectivity of the American judicial system at this time in history,” Sheehan said. “They are not trustworthy. The majority of the United States Supreme Court is not trustworthy. They have given themselves over to this same national security state mentality.”

Russia has granted Snowden temporary asylum for one year. Earlier this month, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) called Russia's actions a betrayal. The senator went on to label Snowden a "coward."

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/23/edward-snowden-daniel-sheehan_n_3806135.html

several more paragraphs, and audio interview with this attorney...listen to this!

Militarizing America's Police Forces

Militarizing America's Police Forces
by Jim Hightower

Attention citizens: I have received inside information revealing that global terrorists are targeting us again. Their target is not Washington, New York City or even Disneyland. Rather, it is: Concord.

You know, in New Hampshire. The state capital. Even though only about 43,000 people live there, Concord apparently has some sort of secret significance that makes it a target. We can infer this from an extraordinary defensive action being taken by local authorities. Concord police, fully backed by the city council, are preparing for a horrific terroristical assault. Specifically, they sought a $258,000 grant from the Department of Homeland Security so they can gird themselves for the onslaught by purchasing a "Lenco BearCat G3" armored vehicle. Sure enough, DHS gladly coughed up the cash.

This bold stand to defend the homeland was revealed by the New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union, which obtained a copy of the grant request. Actually, it is not al-Qaida terrorists that have Concord's police gearing up for war, but, as their request put it, "the domestic type" of terrorists.

Really? Terrorists in Concord? Yes, claim police, referring vaguely to "daily challenges" and warning that the "threat is real and here."

more: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2013/08/21-2
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