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Romney's Albatross

Michael Collins

The public is just beginning to pay attention to the key issues of the 2012 presidential campaign. Even at this early stage, there is a clear trend in opinion against vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan's Medicare voucher program. On this and other key issues, Ryan's very explicit positions and legislative proposals spell doom for the Romney campaign. Ryan's record and a Republican platform endorsing those extreme views are Romney's albatross.

A Pew Research poll, August 23, exposes the impact of one key campaign. Medicare Voucher Plan Remains Unpopular captures the impact of timing for Ryan's exposure as a hard core, right wing extremist.

Basically, Ryan destroys Medicare by turning it into a voucher system. Seniors would receive a grant from the Federal government to purchase their own coverage (on those useless exchanges Obama created, perhaps). The additional costs represent 35% of median senior income in 2022 and go up from there to 50% of median income by 2050. A Republican death panel, this approach will deny a major portion of seniors of part of all of their medical services.

Troubling Israeli Religious Fundamentalism

 

Troubling Israeli Religious Fundamentalism

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Islamic fundamentalism is vilified in the West. Extremist Jews are largely ignored. In Israel they're dangerous. They influence  government policy. They seek control of Israel's rabbinical system.

 

New York Times Pro-Israeli Bias

 

New York Times Pro-Israeli Bias

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

The New York Times has a longstanding history of pro-Israeli bias. An earlier If Americans Knew report explained "highly disturbing patterns" of distorted, one-sided coverage.

 

Syria News - Aug 22

 

Sayda: Syria solution will not go through UN, "I believe a no-fly zone has to be created soon" - Kurdpress News Aganecy

SNC: Jamil’s statement on Assad resignation “not worthy of attention” -  Asharq Alawsat Newspaper (English)

Free Syrian Army Military Council Commanders To Formally Request No Fly Zone - PRNewswire-USNewswire

The cost of establishing a  no-fly zone in Syria, While the operation is feasible, mitigating its significant risks would require a major campaign - U.S. Naval Institute

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Syria tells Russia it will not use chemical arms: report - chicagotribune.com

Report: West in cooperation with Arab states bribed Syrian officials to defect - Israel News, Ynetnews

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Syrian rebels' allegiance to anyone with a gun for sale, "You must look a religious Islamic fighter if you want the money or the guns from the Saudis" - The Times

VIDEO: Free Syrian Army uses prisoner for suicide bombing - BBC News

VIDEO: Saudi guy fighting in Syria with the FSA - LiveLeak.com

Former Chechen warlord's son killed in Syria: Report - REUTERS

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Syria Christian refugees in Lebanon fear Islamist rebels - latimes.com

Can Syria's Christians Survive?: Saudi Wahabi Funded Rebels Pouring Into Syria - Babak Darvish

 

To contact Bartolo email peaceloversingle@gmail.com

Hey, neighbor! Can I borrow your Stowaway Detector? by Philip Weber

It’s a fact: guys love gadgets, and TSA Administrator John Pistole is no exception. If it beeps or buzzes, John wants one.

READ THE REST AT TSA NEWS.

Welcoming a Warmonger to Town on Wednesday

Wow, it's been a while, but protests of war makers in Charlottesville will be back big time next Wednesday. It seems like ages since we protested John Yoo, or even since our threatened protest of Dick Cheney scared him out of coming to town. But opportunity is knocking and a massive nonviolent protest is sure to answer.

How could it not? On Wednesday, Charlottesville will host a man who has escalated war in Afghanistan and continued it in the face of overwhelming public opposition. He's invented a new kind of war using drones and launched such wars in numerous nations, building intense hostility toward the United States. He keeps a list of "nominees" for murder. On the list are adults and children, Americans and non-Americans. He holds meetings with his staff on Tuesdays to decide whom to kill next, and then kills them. He'll have one of these Terror Tuesday meetings the day before his visit to our town.

Syrian False Flag Planned?

 

Syrian False Flag Planned?

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Never bet against Washington's imperial plans. New tactics follow failed ones. Efforts to oust Assad continue. Proxy killers can't do it alone. They're no match against Syria's superior military strength. It's committed to rout them.

 

Lawless National Security Letters

 

Lawless National Security Letters

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

American freedom always was weak. It's now on life support. Numerous police state laws followed 9/11. Rights most people take for granted are on the chopping block for elimination.

 

Big Brother spying alone eroded them. It's ongoing lawlessly in many forms. 

 

Talk Nation Radio: The War on Whistleblowers With Thomas Drake and Jesselyn Radack

Jesselyn Radack and Thomas Drake discuss their experiences as government whistleblowers, the retribution they've endured, and the currently worsening pattern of secrecy, intimidation, and persecution of whistleblowers in Washington, D.C.

Jesselyn Radack is a former ethics adviser to the U.S. Department of Justice who came to prominence as a whistleblower after she disclosed that the FBI committed an ethics violation in its interrogation of John Walker Lindh (the "American Taliban") without an attorney present, and that the Department of Justice attempted to suppress that information. Her experience is chronicled in her memoir, TRAITOR: The Whistleblower and the "American Taliban". Radack was this past year's co-recipient of the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence award.

Jesselyn Radack is the Government Accountability Project's National Security & Human Rights Director. In her role, she works primarily with national security and intelligence community whistleblowers, including those from the Defense Department, Department of Homeland Security, NSA and CIA – with a special focus on torture, secret surveillance, secrecy, and political discrimination. See http://whistleblower.org

She recently represented former NSA official Thomas Drake on whistleblower matters stemming from the government's unsuccessful prosecution of him under the Espionage Act.

Thomas Drake is a former senior executive of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), decorated United States Air Force and United States Navy veteran, computer software expert, and whistleblower. He is the 2011 recipient of the Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling and co-recipient of the Sam Adams award. The government's retribution against Drake, for exposing waste, abuse, and incompetence, included charging him under the Espionage Act.  The charges fell apart.

Total run time: 29:00

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Dumb enough to work for the TSA, too dumb to understand satire by Amy Alkon

Wearing the above shirt, designed by BoingBoing’s Cory Doctorow, caused a “brown” man to be abused (even more than the rest of us usually are) by TSA thugs and then yanked off a plane.

READ THE REST AT TSA NEWS.

Was Mary of Nazareth a "Hooligan?"

Pussy Riot’s Appeal for Justice

August 20, 2012

Editor Note: A Russian judge has sentenced three female “punk” rockers from the group “Pussy Riot” to two years in prison for performing a protest song at a Moscow cathedral, what the judge called anti-religious “hooliganism.” But Ray McGovern sees the protest as in the spirit of Mary, mother of Jesus.

By Ray McGovern

The song to which the punk band “Pussy Riot” danced on Feb. 21 in Russia’s iconic Christ the Savior Cathedral ends with a prayer asking Jesus’s mother Mary to “become a feminist,” but Mary always was a feminist through and through, with a voice speaking strongly for justice.

Centuries of saccharine portraits and iconography have obscured a more reality-based appreciation of this gutsy young woman. But recent scripture study throws light on how Mary implanted a vision of inclusive justice into the heart of Jesus.

“Behavior detection”: still a bad idea by Deborah Pierce

John Pistole, who heads the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), posted an op-ed in USA Today on August 17, 2012 in an attempt to shore up support for and justify the existence of his “behavior detection” program.

READ THE REST AT TSA NEWS.

Japan: America's Imperial Proxy

 

Japan: America's Imperial Proxy

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

On August 15, 1945, Japan announced its surrender. On September 2, WW II officially ended. Japanese Foreign Affairs Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu's formalized it aboard the USS Missouri. Both dates signify VJ (Victory over Japan) or VP (Victory in the Pacific) Day.

 

End of war meant occupation. General Douglas MacArthur became military governor. He ruled a conquered state.

Anti-Iranian Hysteria

 

Anti-Iranian Hysteria

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Western media, hard right commentators, and pro-Israeli groups feature regular anti-Iranian denigration, slander, misinformation and lies.

 

Respecting its sovereignty is verboten. Regime change is prioritized. All means are OK, including war, mass killing and destruction. Warmongers relish it. Rhetoric tries justifying it.

 

A tale of two agencies by Philip Weber

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

READ THE REST AT TSA NEWS.

You Say You Want a Revolution of Values?

I spoke this past weekend at the Kateri Peace Conference in upstate New York ( http://kateripeaceconference.org ) along with Kathy Kelly, John Horgan, Ellen Grady, James Ricks, Matt Southworth, Walt Chura, and many others.  Watch for the video, because a terrific discussion took place around a series of questions posed by the event organizers.  The following are some of the initial responses I had prepared beforehand.

Why Work Against War

War engages me because of its unique relationship to morality.  Killing is a long-standing taboo.  Killing is often if not always the worst thing that can be done to someone.  But killing on a larger scale, organizing numerous people to kill numerous other people is often treated very differently.  When a government kills its own people, that's generally considered an outrage.  But when a government kills another nation's people, that's not always viewed as a moral problem. In fact a government killing its own people is often used as a justification for another nation to come in and kill more of the first nation's people.  Killing in war, and lesser crimes in war, are given a moral pass or even praised.  A U.S. military sniper bragged on the debut episode this week of NBC's war reality show "Stars Earn Stripes" that he had "160 kills."  Not that he killed 160 people.  The people are erased in his language. "I have 160 kills."  And the show itself is a dramatization of U.S. news coverage of U.S. wars, in which the only participants are Americans.  The 95% of victims in our one-sided slaughters are rarely mentioned in U.S. news coverage, and on this new war-o-tainment show the heroic warriors attack empty fields, blow up guard towers with no guards, kick in doors of uninhabited houses, and spend so much time talking about how "real" it all is that none of them seem to notice that there are no enemies or victims to be found.

AIPAC Wants War on Iran

 

AIPAC Wants War on Iran

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

AIPAC is an unregistered foreign agent. It calls itself "America's Pro-Israeli Lobby." It's represented Israeli interests since 1953. 

 

Virtually no one in Congress confronts it. Doing so is a career-ender. It has enormous influence over US Middle East policies affecting Israel, including war and peace.

 

Agent Orange: A Deadly Legacy

 

 

Agent Orange: A Deadly Legacy

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Fifty-one years and counting! On August 10, 1961, America began spraying Agent Orange in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. Operation Ranch Hand waged herbicidal warfare for 10 years.

 

Let's Start a Medicare and Social Security Action (MASS Action) Party!

 

By Dave Lindorff


If you want to know how moribund the Democratic Party is, how completely owned by Wall Street the president is, and how sick our national politics have become, just consider Social Security.


Veterans For Peace Appeals to Non-Alignment Movement Leaders: Stop War, Stop Sanctions on Iran

Peaceful Action Urged on Iran Crisis

August 19, 2012

With the Non-Aligned Movement meeting this week in Tehran, Veterans For Peace is urging the organization of 120 nations not formally allied with any major power bloc to take steps to deter the Israeli-American threats of war against Iran over its nuclear enrichment program.

APPEAL TO NON-ALIGNED LEADERS MEETING IN TEHRAN

FROM: Veterans For Peace

This is an urgent appeal from Veterans For Peace. We are an organization of U.S. veterans formed in 1985 to try to bring an end to war. VFP is a non-profit organization recognized by the UN as an NGO.

Iran War Weekly - August 19, 2012

Iran War Weekly

August 19, 2012

Hello All – Once again the civil war in Syria and the question of whether or not Israel will bomb Iran before the US elections captured the media spotlight this week.  There were no negotiations about Iran’s nuclear program, as both parties (the United States and Iran) focused on whether the sanctions were “working” and what impact they were having.  As has been true for months, the issue of “Iran” was largely submerged in the US presidential elections.  Each of these issues is explored in some good/useful reading linked below.

Nouveau Reign of Terror

Michael Collins



The Syrian regime should be smashed fast.

Mr. Bashar al-Assad doesn't deserve to be on this earth.

Laurent Fabius, French Foreign Minister
Voice of America August 17

What do you expect from a fake socialist government?  French President Francois Hollande joined the Empire Project's histrionic chorus just as soon as he could after taking office. His comrade, Mr. Fabius, announced the nouveau reign of terror policy toward foreign leaders who upset the grand plans of NATO and the Gulf Cooperation Council states.

"Off with their heads!" is the cry.  Hillary Clinton hasn't been quite as explicit as Fabius but her statements are just offensive to the notion of sovereign integrity.

Dangerous Anti-Iranian Warmongering

 

Dangerous Anti-Iranian Warmongering  

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

America and Israel wage aggressive wars of choice. Enemies don't exist so they're created. Belligerence is standard practice. Reckless irresponsibility defines their thinking. 

 

Ravaging countries to control them is policy. Rule of law principles and human lives don't matter. Wealth and power alone are prioritized. So is thinking might is right and what we say goes.

Julian Assange: Political Refugee

 

Julian Assange: Political Refugee

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

International law protects refugees and asylum seekers. 

 

Article I of the 1951 UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees calls them:

 

Hands Off Ecuador and Assange

 

On Thursday August 16, as news broke that Ecuador was giving political asylum to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, World Can't Wait in NYC quickly put together a plan to demonstrate support for this brave decision. About 10 people who understand the significance of Wikileaks got together in front of the Ecuadorian Consulate with signs supporting the courageous stand of the Ecuadorian government:  "small country - high ethics - big heart," "hands off Ecuador and Assange," and "thanks for standing up for law and morality."

Speaking Events

2015

April 25 Houston

May 8 New Jersey

May 30 NYC here and here

August 27, Chicago

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