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This is the forum for general discussion of the Downing Street minutes, the After Downing Street Coalition, and related matters other than activism, evidence, Congress and the media which have their own forum categories.

The circus is in town: The United States of Absurdity, Circa 2015

By John Grant

 

"Someone must have been telling lies about Joseph K., for without having done anything wrong he was arrested one fine morning."

Tomgram: Eduardo Galeano, The Previous Sole Superpower

 Recently, Susan Bergholz, the devoted literary agent of the late Uruguayan writer and planetary great Eduardo Galeano, sent me this brief email: “A friend of Eduardo's and mine called yesterday to tell me, ‘Now we know where Eduardo went: he became pope!’” Somehow, that thought raised my spirits immeasurably.

Tomgram: Pepe Escobar, The Pivot to Eurasia

 This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com.

Tomgram: Engelhardt, A Message in a Bottle from My Mother

Requiem for the Home Front
A Cheer for Irma the Caricaturist
By Tom Engelhardt

It's not terrorism if it's retaliation: Chattanooga Shooting, If Linked to ISIS, is a Legitimate Act of War

By Dave Lindorff

 

I'm not a fan of war or of killing of any kind, but the labeling of the deadly attack by Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez on two US military sites in Chattanooga, Tennessee as an act of terror is absurd.

Tomgram: Tim Weiner, The Nixon Legacy

 This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com.

A tale of sexism, racism and corporate pressure”: Ellen Pao’s Resignation from Reddit

By Alfredo Lopez


The Internet -- always ablaze with controversy -- is a wildfire these days with revelations about more pernicious government spying, deals between governments and corporate "hacker companies", and Ellen Pao's resignation as head of Reddit.

Most Attitudes and Beliefs are Outcomes of Fear

I routinely come across efforts to change an individual’s attitude, belief and/or value by using education to teach the ‘right’ one. This is most usually intended to lead to a better behavioural outcome, such as someone who is not sexist, racist or violent. I would like to explain why education cannot achieve such a change, except in the most superficial of circumstances, as the evidence clearly demonstrates.

For the sake of this article, an attitude is a settled way of thinking about someone or something, a belief is an acceptance that something is true and a value is a principle in relation to something judged to be important in life.

We’re #1...in the heroin business!: US Lost in Afghanistan, But Did Make Afghanistan World’s Top Heroin Exporter

By Jack Balkwill


...The US government pretends to care about eradicating opium production in Afghanistan, while production soars to record levels.  Can this be an accident? 

The largest marketplace for illegal drugs continues to be the United States, despite a decades-long so-called "war on drugs."  Can this be an accident? 

Is this taking democracy too far?: The Greek People Have Said ‘No!’ to Austerity and Economic Blackmail

By Dave Lindorff


Something huge has happened in Greece, though you wouldn’t know it if you rely on the US corporate media for your information.


A pariah in his home state: Storm Smashes Chris Christie’s Presidential Candidacy

By Linn Washington, Jr.

 

If New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has any chance of gaining traction in his bid to become the 2016 Republican candidate for president he has to maintain support in suburban communities like East Greenwich Township, a small, predominately white, upper middle income area located about fifty miles south of Trenton, NJ’s capital city.

Tomgram: Engelhardt, What Happened to War?

 [Note to TomDispatch Readers: The next piece at this site will be posted on Tuesday, July 7th.

We don’t do body counts: Have Millions of Deaths from America's 'War on Terror' been Concealed?

By Jack Balkwill

 

How many days has it been
Since I was born?
How many days
'Til I die?

Do I know any ways
I can make you laugh?
Or do I only know how
To make you cry?

― Leon Russell, Stranger in a Strange Land
 

A victory for common sense and decency: 5 Cheers and 4 Raspberries for the SCOTUS as it Bars States from Blocking Gay Marriage

By Dave Lindorff

 

The pig-headed small-mindedness and intellectual dishonesty of most fundamentalists of whatever religion knows no bounds.

Dog whistlers run for cover: Lone Wolf Racist Terror Backfires

By John Grant


“Our ancestors were literally fighting to keep human beings as slaves and to continue the unimaginable acts that occur when someone is held against their will. I am not proud of this heritage.”

Corrupted Coverage: US News Media Still Can’t Get It Right on Race

By Linn Washington, Jr.

 

Does the intense news coverage examining the tragic massacre inside a historic black church in Charleston, S.C. and coverage exposing the travesty of the white woman who claims she’s actually black mean the mainstream media has finally ‘got it right’ regarding reporting on race and racism?

What were you doing on your vacation?: Returning Home to the US is to Enter a Police State

By Dave Lindorff


A few weeks ago, I got a vivid comparative look at how far this country has moved towards becoming a police state. The occasion was a brief visit to Montreal, where my wife was to give a harpsichord recital at an early keyboard music conference. 


“So What’s Your Question, Larry?”

RUSH TRANSCRIPT

PRESS CONFERENCE WITH GOVERNOR RICKETTS

LINCOLN, NEBRASKA

 

Killing prisoners through medical neglect: Mumia Attorneys Sue in Federal Court for Prisoners’ Right to Medical Care

By Dave Lindorff


Attorneys from the Abolitionis Law Center in Pennsylvania, an organization defending prisoner rights and challenging the state's penal system, have filed suit in federal court demanding that Pennsylvania's Department of Corrections stop preventing them from even seeing their client, journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal, on occasions when he has to be hospitalized for a critical diabetes condition.

The case for ‘courageous restraint’: The Killer Elite, at Home and Abroad

By John Grant


We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.

                                                      - George Orwell


It approves the spy program and makes it permanent: USA Freedom Act is Anything But

By Alfredo Lopez


To get to the point: there is nothing -- nothing at all -- in any recent law or legislative action that will in any way weaken the police state structure our government has put into place for rapid deployment. You are not any more free than you were last week and, no matter what the Congress has done with the expired provisions of the Patriot Act or the newly developed and Orwellian-named "USA Freedom Act", you are not going to be any more free next week.

Here come the terrorists!: Help! The USA PATRIOT ACT has expired!

By Dave Lindorff

 

Omigod! We're all gonna die!

Three provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act were allowed to expire on June 1 thanks to a Senate disagreement over how to "fix" them (and thanks to Sen. Rand Paul's outspoken opposition to renewal), and now we’re vulnerable to terrorism!

That at least is what President Obama and other fear mongers in Washington are saying.

It’s not just police killings: Tazing and Bust of Videotaper Shows Abuse of Blacks is Just Normal Philly Cop Behavior

By Linn Washington Jr.


A July 2013 Philadelphia police attack on Sharif Anderson, where officers beat, kicked and shot Anderson twice with a Taser, is more than just another ugly incident of abuse by a big city police force long assailed for its persistent brutality and corruption.

Memorial Day 2015: Antiwar Veterans Join the Conversation at the Vietnam Wall

By John Grant


Anthropologists have found that in traditional societies, memory becomes attached to places.

T.M. Luhrmann, New York Times Op-ed May 25, 2015


Finally! Some climate crisis honesty: Forget About a 2 Future; It Will be 4˚-6˚C Degrees, and Soon

By Dave Lindorff

 

            A tectonic shift is occurring suddenly in the debate over climate change.

 

The US needs the Iceland option: If ‘Too-Big-to-Fail’’ Means Too-Big-To-Jail’ It Should Mean ‘Too-Big-to-Be’

By Dave Lindorff

 

            In a couple of days, the so-called US Justice Department will be announcing an “agreement” reached with five large banks, including two of the largest in the US -- JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup, the holding companies for Chase and Citibank -- under which these banks or bank holding companies will plead guilty to felonies involving the manipulation of international currency markets.

World Can't Wait - 3 panels at the Left Forum

World Cant' Wait will host 3 panels at Left Forum from May 30-31st, 2015 at John Jay College New Building, 524 W. 59th St. NYC. 

Deep Into Drone Wars & Secret Ops: What's the "War on Terror" Coming To?The invasions and occupations of the Bush regime have given way to the secret operations and drone strikes of the Obama era. Growing U.S. forces are carrying out secret ops in 150 countries; conventional and drone strikes are actively attacking Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia and spreading into North Africa. This poses significant challenges to anti-war opposition within the U.S. How do we expose and oppose these new and fundamentally illegitimate and unjust actions?

Child Soldier released from jail by Canadian court: US Still Seeks Jail for ‘Fighter’ Captured at 15 in Afghanistan

By Dave Lindorff

 

            The good news is that an appellate judge in Canada has had the courage and good sense to uphold the release from jail on bail of Omar Khadr, a native of Canada who was captured as a child soldier at the age of 15 in Afghanistan by US forces back in 2002 and shipped off to Guantanamo, where he became one of the children held in captivity.

Speaking Events

2015

August 27, Chicago

September 22, DC

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