A World at 36/7 Speed, A Tomdispatch Interview with Katrina vanden Heuvel

From Tomdispatch this morning, "A World at 36/7 Speed, A Tomdispatch Interview with Katrina vanden Heuvel" http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=78700

The eighth in my series of interviews, this one offers a look at Nation magazine editor and publisher Katrina vanden Heuvel's day at the office and, through that, at a media/information world working in 36/7 time. ("The Internet," she comments, "is expanding so exponentially that it's not even as confined as the 24/7 cable-media culture").

After Thousands of Activists Demand Investigation, FCC Launches Payola Probe

Free Press calls for a crackdown on Big Media's abuse of the public airwaves

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Communications Commission has launched a formal investigation into growing payola scandal at four of the nation's largest radio broadcasters. According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, the FCC has issued "letters of inquiry" seeking documents from Clear Channel Communications, CBS Radio, Entercom Communications and Citadel Broadcasting.

Envoys Remain Split on Plan Against Iran

By Peter Finn, Washington Post

Degree of sanctions by UN at issue.

Moscow - Senior diplomats from the U.N. Security Council's five permanent members ended two days of talks about Iran's nuclear program Wednesday with consensus for action against the Islamic state, but they continued to be divided as to what form it should take, U.S. Undersecretary of State R. Nicholas Burns said.

"Nearly every country is considering some form of sanctions, and this is a new development," Burns told reporters after the meeting. "Every country said that some type of action had to be taken . . . to, in effect, erect a barrier to Iran's progress. So the challenge for us will be what can we all agree on."

Bill Bulges With Unforeseen Spending for Guns, Tanks

By Jonathan Weisman, Washington Post

Senate to take up measure as military fights to keep guns, tanks working.

With the expected passage this spring of the largest emergency spending bill in history, annual war expenditures in Iraq will have nearly doubled since the U.S. invasion, as the military confronts the rapidly escalating cost of repairing, rebuilding and replacing equipment chewed up by three years of combat.

20,000 Kidnapped in Iraq Since January: Report

Agence France-Presse

Karbala - Nearly 20,000 people have been kidnapped in Iraq since the beginning of this year alone, according to a report released on Wednesday.

The survey, which underscores the massive social upheaval caused by rebel activity and increasing sectarian conflict, does not give the number of people killed. However, it says that 15,462 people have been wounded.

The 19,548 people kidnapped includes 4,959 women and 2,350 children, according to the report prepared by a group of 125 non-governmental organisations and made public in the Shia holy city of Karbala.

The Worst President in History?

By Sean Wilentz, Rolling Stone

One of America's leading historians assesses George W. Bush.

George W. Bush's presidency appears headed for colossal historical disgrace. Barring a cataclysmic event on the order of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, after which the public might rally around the White House once again, there seems to be little the administration can do to avoid being ranked on the lowest tier of U.S. presidents. And that may be the best-case scenario. Many historians are now wondering whether Bush, in fact, will be remembered as the very worst president in all of American history.


Thirteen of the nation’s most prominent physicists have written a letter to President Bush, calling U.S. plans to reportedly use nuclear weapons against Iran “gravely irresponsible” and warning that such action would have “disastrous consequences for the security of the United States and the world.”

The physicists include five Nobel laureates, a recipient of the National Medal of Science and three past presidents of the American Physical Society, the nation’s preeminent professional society for physicists.

Important Film to See: "Sir, No Sir"


by wilfred

I just saw the new documentary Sir, No Sir http://sirnosir.com which was wonderful. It takes us back to 1962 and the War in Vietnam and how the resistance was born and grew. Just as importantly it shows us how it has been co-opted and revised since then by the conservatives:

The Vietnam War has been the subject of hundreds of films, both fiction and non-fiction, but this story-the story of the rebellion of thousands of American soldiers against the war-has never been told in film.This is certainly not for lack of evidence. By the Pentagon's own figures, 503,926 "incidents of desertion" occurred between 1966 and 1971; officers were being "fragged"(killed with fragmentation grenades by their own troops) at an alarming rate; and by 1971 entire units were refusing to go into battle in unprecedented numbers.

Movements: From Antiwar, to Peace, to Democracy

We need to take this historic opportunity to evolve the antiwar movement into a democracy movement.
by Mike Ferner, http://baltimorechronicle.com

Who among us has not felt Cindy Sheehan’s frustration with a system that successfully keeps millions of our fellow citizens sitting on their complacent butts, even when they tell pollsters they are against this criminal war?Not a day too soon the antiwar movement has begun a desperately-needed discussion.

Shame on the Post's Editorial Page

By Robert Parry, http://www.consortiumnews.com

If a full and truthful history of the disastrous Iraq War is ever written, there should be a chapter devoted to the pivotal role played by the Washington Post’s hawkish editorial page and the many like-minded thinkers who are published in the newspaper’s Op-Ed section.

As arguably the most influential newspaper in the nation’s capital, the Post might have been expected to encourage a healthy pre-war debate that reflected diverse opinions from experts in the fields of government, diplomacy, academia, the military and the broader American public. War, after all, is not a trivial matter.

An Early Look at Eric Boehlert's "Lapdogs" of the Press

By E&P Staff

NEW YORK Eric Boehlert, former senior writer for Salon, in his forthcoming book, “Lapdogs,” details what he calls “the double standard adopted for Bush and Republicans that became the unfortunate news norm&hellip.timidity became entrenched and the results plain to see.” That may explain why the subtitle of his book, due to be published by Free Press on May 11, is “How the Press Rolled Over for Bush.”

Resolution on Congressional War Powers and Iran

Rep. Peter DeFazio
April 12, 2006

Expressing the Sense of Congress that the President cannot initiate military action against Iran over its nuclear program without first obtaining authorization from Congress.

Whereas Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution grants Congress the power "to declare war," to lay and collect taxes to "provide for the common defense" and general welfare of the United States, to "raise and support armies," to "provide and maintain a navy," to "make rules for the regulation for the land and naval forces," to "provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions," to "provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the militia," and to "make all laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution...all...powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States";

Congressman DeFazio Letter to Bush

The Honorable George W. Bush
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear President Bush:

We are concerned by the growing number of stories that your Administration is planning for military action against Iran. We are writing to remind you that you are constitutionally bound to seek congressional authorization before launching any preventive military strikes against Iran.

Raging Grannies and Raging Americans

By Cindy Sheehan

I am sitting here watching CSPAN where Congress is holding a special hearing into Chinese human rights violations: Which is of course an important issue that needs to be addressed. An Amnesty International report just came out and of all of the countries in the world the US is the fourth in numbers of executions behind China, Iran, and Saudi Arabia. China by far executes the most people with seeming barbaric abandon.

Cheney has tapped Iranian expatriate, arms dealer to surveil discussions with Iran, officials say

By Larisa Alexandrovna

The Department of Defense and Vice President Dick Cheney have retained the services of Iran-Contra arms dealer and discredited intelligence asset Manucher Ghorbanifar as their “man on the ground,” in order to report on any interaction and attempts at negotiations between Iranian officials and US ambassador to Iraq, Zelmay Khalilzad, current and former intelligence officials say.

Blackwater in the Crosshairs: Families of Four Private Security Contractors Killed in Fallujah File a Ground-Breaking Lawsuit


The families of four private security contractors killed in Fallujah in
March 2004 have filed a ground-breaking lawsuit charging Blackwater USA with
fraud and wrongful death. Blackwater has fought to have the case dismissed
by claiming that all liability lies not with the company but the U.S.

In an expose in the new issue of the Nation magazine, independent journalist

VIDEO | Cindy Sheehan: Hold Bush Accountable

Cindy Sheehan expresses her anger at the excuses Bush uses for being above the law. Cindy also proposes fitting punishment for the Neo-Cons.

Rumsfeld Shouldn't Be Fired. He Should Be Indicted

By Matthew Rothschild, The Progressive

It's not Donald Rumsfeld's colossal arrogance or his glaring misjudgments we should be focusing on. It's his potential crimes.

The mainstream media in the U.S. is giving enormous attention to the retired generals who are demanding Donald Rumsfeld's resignation because of his autocratic style and his bungling in Iraq.

But the mainstream media is barely discussing Rumsfeld's alleged culpability in the abusive treatment of detainees, up to and including torture.

The Ongoing War on Truth in Iraq

By Dahr Jamail
t r u t h o u t | www.truthout.org

The people of England have been led in Mesopotamia into a trap from which it will be hard to escape with dignity and honor. They have been tricked into it by a steady withholding of information. The Baghdad communiqués are belated, insincere, incomplete. Things have been far worse than we have been told, our administration more bloody and inefficient than the public knows ... We are today not far from a disaster.

Prominent U.S. Physicists Send Letter to President Bush

By Kim McDonald, UC-San Diego
From http://PhysOrg.com
Via http://empiresfall.blogspot.com

Thirteen of the nation’s most prominent physicists have written a letter to President Bush, calling U.S. plans to reportedly use nuclear weapons against Iran “gravely irresponsible” and warning that such action would have “disastrous consequences for the security of the United States and the world.”

VFP Burglarized



MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA: This past weekend the office of Chapter 27 of the Veterans for Peace was broken into and burglarized. Sometime between Friday afternoon, 14 April 2006 and Monday morning, 17 April 2006, the office was surreptitiously entered and a number of items were removed. VFP #27 maintained an office in the basement of 2123 Clinton Ave. S. a property belonging to the Saint Stephen’s Catholic Community. According to reports none of the exterior doors of the former parochial school were forced open. The office door lock was broken by some sort of pry, possibly a screwdriver. John Varone, President of Chapter 27 was not immediately available for comment. Shiloh Fetzek, the Office Coordinator said that all the computers, the printers, the DVD player, the CD player and a small amount of cash were taken. Bob Heberle, the Chapter Secretary said that the greatest loss wasn’t the equipment, but the data it contained. “Years of records have be lost,” he said. “They can’t be replaced except by hours and hours of tedious data entry.” Fortunately, the paper records and the literature in the office appear not to have been of interest to the burglars. The police have no suspects at this time. But, they removed the Coffee Fund jar that had contained a small amount of cash in the hope of recovering finger prints.

A Crisis Almost Without Equal

Republicans and Democrats alike are starting to face the prospect of what it means to have George W. Bush as their commander in chief for another 33 months -- in a time of war, terrorism, and nuclear intrigue. How can the press contribute to confronting the crisis? First: recognize it exists.

By Greg Mitchell

(April 19, 2006) -- No matter which party they generally favor or political stripes they wear, newspapers and other media outlets need to confront the fact that America faces a crisis almost without equal in recent decades.

Stop Us Before We Kill Again!

By Bernard Weiner, The Crisis Papers

The essence of Bush&Co. strategy, from January 2001 to today, can be boiled down to this: We'll continue doing whatever we want to do until someone stops us.

So, if you're wondering whether the U.S. will back off from attacking Iran, or whether corporations will no longer be given the ability to dictate Administration environmental policy, or whether domestic spying on U.S. citizens will cease, or whether Scalia might recuse himself on cases he's already pre-judged -- if you still harbor any or all of those illusions, forget about it.

My Morning Song

By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Dizzy found me last night,
Saw some kind of new light,
I woke up in a whirlwind,
Just you watch my head spin.
The spectacle that made you cry,
It's a thrill a minute plane ride,
It's overtime at ring side,
No lie ...

-- The Black Crowes

Cindy Sheehan, newly-minted Red Sox fan.

Negroponte: Iran Nuclear Claims Exaggerated


WASHINGTON -- Despite the wild and threatening claims of its hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran may not be as close to building nuclear weapons as the world may think.

So says John Negroponte, U.S. National Intelligence Director, who thinks Iran would likely obtain nuclear weapons long before they had the ability to create their own.

Negroponte, in an interview with NBC News, shared his opinion of Iran's nuclear threat and an assessment of what it would take to neutralize an escalating threat in that region.

Kerry Doing Now What Would Have Given Him a Landslide

By Senator John Kerry

One general after another demanding Rumsfeld's resignation. More citizens every day joining in support of our May 15 deadline for Iraqi leaders to stop their squabbling and form a government.

In these and many other ways, because of citizens like you, the wheel is slowly, but surely, turning on the question of Iraq. Over the next ten days, we're going to give it another huge push. But, before I tell you more, please take a moment right now to sign in support of the Kerry Iraq plan:

Breaking the Mikulski Code!

By William Hughes

"What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty and democracy?" - Mahatma Gandhi

She looks like a liberal. Walks like a liberal. Talks like a liberal, but on the Iraqi War, she's, in fact, just another blood stained War Hawk. I'm referring to U.S. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D-MD)!

Evidence Bush Knowingly Deceived Congress in 2003 SOTU Violating USC 18 Sections 1001 And 371

by HoundDog, http://www.dailykos.com

President George W Bush (43) and top members of his staff have be caught in so many deceptions, selective intelligence leaks, and outright lies many of you may wonder why I keep coming back to the false 16 words in the 2003 State of the Union speech.

Of all of Bush's deception's, even I will admit these are hardly the most consequential by many measures. Unless, these are the exact 16 words that can be proven to be an intentional and willful deception of Congress. In which case, this may be the best and most likely grounds for impeachment. A case originally advanced by Representative Maurice Hinchey and 40 other Representatives in a September 15, 2005 letter to US Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald. (See below)

Carl Bernstein: Senate Hearings on Bush, Now

In this VF.com exclusive, a Watergate veteran and Vanity Fair contributor calls for bipartisan hearings investigating the Bush presidency. Should Republicans on the Hill take the high road and save themselves come November?
By CARL BERNSTEIN, http://www.vanityfair.com

Worse than Watergate? High crimes and misdemeanors justifying the impeachment of George W. Bush, as increasing numbers of Democrats in Washington hope, and, sotto voce, increasing numbers of Republicans—including some of the president's top lieutenants—now fear? Leaders of both parties are acutely aware of the vehemence of anti-Bush sentiment in the country, expressed especially in the increasing number of Americans—nearing fifty percent in some polls—who say they would favor impeachment if the president were proved to have deliberately lied to justify going to war in Iraq.

Where to Protest Peacefully

Wednesday, April 12, 2006
NEW* ROMNEY in Boston, MA: Governor Mitt Romney signs his much-heralded
health care legislation, at 11:00 AM, in Faneuil Hall, that will make
health insurance available for nearly all citizens of Massachusetts
within the next three years. [The Note, ABCNews.com, 04/12/06]

UPDATED* BUSH in Annandale, VA: POTUS makes remarks on the Medicare
Prescription Drug Benefit at Northern Virginia Community College, at


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