Simon Johnson provides his separate assessment of the lies and distortions used in attacking MA Senate candidate, Elizabeth Warren, at BaseLineScenario:
Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS has another ad out attacking Elizabeth Warren. This is beyond ludicrous – the ad attempts to blame Ms. Warren for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) and for bank bailouts. The principle here seems to be that when the truth cannot be slanted in a way you want, just ignore the facts and go all out for disinformation.
I count at least five misrepresentations in the ad, and I suggest the following corrections (here):...
In case it's not so obvious, Karl Rove and American Crossroads / GPS are in full-blown service to launder the electoral interests of the richest 1% who don't have the numbers but have the money that designed the Citizens United decision exactly in order to be able to buy corporate speech, instead.
Senator Bernie Sanders, just yesterday, offered a Constitutional amendment in what I consider to be the last-ditch effort to reverse the Citizens United-induced spiral into a straight-up representative fascism.
Until that Amendment is passed, I guess, American Crossroads Watch will continue to respond to, for further example, what is likely to be a ramping of attacks on the efforts of candidates or officials like Virginia Governor Tim Kaine.
But it takes more than documenting the expose, and your help is needed to get the word out. Please help spread it to your friends and families.
Of all the extraordinary things going on in the world right now, I don't believe there is an outcome that is more essential to assuring that our children can survive the corporatocratic nightmare blueprinted by SCOTUS' Citizen United decision, than the Saving American Democracy Amendment offered by Senator Bernie Sanders, of Vermont.
Please get on board, and help get this Amendment considered and passed.
Warning that American democracy in endangered," Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday proposed a constitutional amendment to overturn a Supreme Court ruling that allowed unrestricted and secret campaign spending by corporations on U.S. elections. The first constitutional amendment ever proposed by Sanders during his two decades in Congress would reverse the narrow 5-to-4 ruling in Citizens United vs. the Federal Elections Commission.
Show your support - sign the petition at http://sanders.senate.gov/savingdemocracy
"There's something wrong with the world today..." - Aerosmith, "Livin' on the Edge" Hat-tip to Jone Johnson Lewis for this disturbing reminder (and excellent example of the hypocrisy inherent in today's extremists - fondly known as the domestic terrorist collective oft referred to as "The American Taliban"...or, more simply, "today's conservatives").
This is a blast from the past - remember way back in 2006, when this video game was announced "in time for Christmas" of all things?
Yeah - that's a special kind of hypocritical hypocrisy, isn't it? Still exists today, too...
Yesterday, I ran across a parody I wrote last spring, a take-off of T. S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" called "The Swan Song of N. Leroy Gingrich." Perhaps I was premature. Anyhow, it moved me to now demolish W. B. Yeats and his great poem:
THE SECOND COMING
"The truth shall set you free."
Is the story that helped destroy the defenses of humankind's most lethal predator one of the most important ever to be told?
Though I'll offer that thought, I won't argue the point. Because what really matters most, about Addiction Incorporated, is that Victor DeNoble dared and was able to tell the truth about his tobacco research, despite the potential consequences to such a high-profile whistleblower.
Almost every major advance of the US economy has been nurtured or facilitated at some point by the active involvement and encouragement of the national government. It's been a partnership - sometimes uneasy, sometimes close, but a partnership - between government and free enterprise, that has led the development of the US economy. This role of the national government was deliberately written into the Constitution, and touches directly on Constitutional issues that the left has ignored, but which the wrong-wing has long waged a smear campaign against. These issues go to the heart of the question: What is the role and purpose of government? They include such specific issues as the General Welfare clause, states rights, implied versus enumerated powers, and the reach and scope of the Commerce clause.
Contrary to the idealized wrong-wing myth of the U.S. economy being founded on the principles of laissez-faire, the framers of the Constitution deliberately set out to create a central government strong enough to force the thirteen states into one national economy. To do this, the national government undertook a number of programs and policies to build and strengthen the national economy by encouraging and protecting manufactures and commerce, establishing a national banking system, and promoting and directly assisting the development of transportation.
#Occupy Wall Street continues to spin off new heroes.
"She wouldn't take my money. That was the day of the eviction of Zuccotti, the same day. And she'd been listening to the news all day, she saw everything that had happened."
"I can't charge you money, this is for the people," she said.
She was born in the projects. She opened up her home to us.
Commenter in response thread - "Throughout the United States a million conservative heads just exploded."
The above is a comment thread response to the posted excerpt of an interview with the 45-year old creator of the Verizon Building-projected 'bat-signal' designed to celebrate the two-month birthday of Occupy Wall Street.
"99% / MIC CHECK! / LOOK AROUND / YOU ARE A PART / OF A GLOBAL UPRISING / WE ARE A CRY / FROM THE HEART / OF THE WORLD / WE ARE UNSTOPPABLE / ANOTHER WORLD IS POSSIBLE / HAPPY BIRTHDAY / #OCCUPY MOVEMENT / OCCUPY WALL STREET / list of cities, states and countries / OCCUPY EARTH / WE ARE WINNING / IT IS THE BEGINNING OF THE BEGINNING / DO NOT BE AFRAID / LOVE."
Yesterday, after a year of battering by the forces assembled by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and funded by the likes of the Koch brothers, progressive America finally successfully fought back. But the victory is small, and will prove Pyrrhic (as 2008 victories have proven to be) if progressives feel they can now relax.
This is a bit of a turn - the mundane world of corporate media - a group notoriously lax about its own fact checking, is fact checking.
So. The story. The LA Times did a little investigative reporting into a controversial contract for $200,000 awarded to a public relations company by a small public entity, the Central Basin Municipal Water District.
People & Power - The Koch Brothers
Al Jazeera may be perceived as having bias issues with some of the nuances on reporting intra-Arab stories but even there, Al Jazeera is one of my standard sources for in-depth reading of the players in the game.
But they recently have picked up on the powerful place of the Kochs in a generation of influence buying and selling in the government of these United States. I think this is a nice review of the current issues, including interviews with the Americans for Prosperity players, such as Tim Phillips.
"Yes, we've put substantial money into Wisconsin, I won't detail numbers but it's substantial."
The Mitten only held out a position paper when it saw The Primary Voter. It looked good-natured, she thought: still it had VERY long claws and a great many teeth, so she felt that it ought to be treated with respect.
'Cheshire Mitt,' she began, rather timidly, as she did not at all know whether it would like the name: however, it only pushed out the position paper a little further. 'Come, it's pleased so far,' thought The Primary Voter, and she went on. 'Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?'
An ongoing series sponsored by the Native American Netroots team focusing on the current issues faced by American Indian Tribes and current solutions to those issues.
I'm not a Native American. I did not grow up on a Reservation. For the longest time, I had only been dimly aware of the extent and level to which Native Americans have been exploited, abused, repressed & discriminated against.
Even now, my awareness likely only begins to scratch the surface, and yet what I've learned over the past few years has brought anger, grief & frustration as my awareness of both past and present bureaucratic b.s. and institutionalized standards of cultural genocide has grown.
Recently, NPR put out a 3 part series called Native Survivors of Foster Care Return Home. (You can watch all three which are linked in the title.) Not too long ago, Metro Times posted a story called Chain of Sorrow that also speaks of the impact and legacy of Indian Boarding Schools.
It's a legacy of pain and sorrow that our nation should be ashamed of.
While reading the latter piece, a paragraph jumped out at me which can be read more than one way. The first way it occurred to me is likely due to my less-informed perspective - but, because of that, it may also be a reflection of a more wide-spread misunderstanding.
Here's the paragraph, with the emphasis on the phrase that stuck out for me:
"It wasn't just the boarding schools that brought this about. From the time Columbus landed in the New World, the assault on Indians, their culture and their religious ways has been relentless. Their sacred lands taken, the people murdered, the women raped and, at times, subjected to forced sterilizations, the deprivation of reservation life, the scourge of alcohol — all these had combined to cause his people to lose so much."
When I first read the paragraph, it didn't sit right - I couldn't understand what was meant by "the deprivation of reservation life" - it first processed in my mind as "children removed from the rez would be deprived of the quality of life on the rez"...which, in the article, was cited as being the reason ~why~ some parents let their children be taken in first place. So, my initial reaction/interpretation was - I hope - incorrect. It wasn't that a child was being deprived of life among their people on the reservation - it was the fact that conditions on the reservation itself were usually harsh and oppressive, becoming yet another aspect of the type of harm done to Native Americans as part of an ongoing (if not always externally recognized) way to continue the same cultural genocide that had begun so many years before.
In either interpretation, however, the paragraph itself was both damning and dismal.
What dismayed me and prompted me to write this article was the thought that immediately followed: what if my first reading of the phrase was the intended interpretation?
That would be pretty sad - for it would present an unchallenged view of the reservation as false equivalent of a way to preserve cultures and traditions.
Sure, there is some of that in reservation life - but, for peoples who were forcibly relocated to unwanted expanses of real estate and who previously harbored little concept of "personal property" the way the settlers conceived of it - how much of their cultural heritage was already compromised? And how much was destroyed in the process of "re-settling" them, or in the subsequent efforts to get them to conform & integrate?
It may be the only current place where the traditions are able to be upheld, but if the belief that it's "good" (versus a way to avoid total cultural extinction) is prevalent, then efforts to improve any relations or conditions are doomed...if not to failure, then to any sort of substantial reform without an awful lot of effort.
Efforts to undo (and prevent further) the whitewashing of our national history with regard to the treatment of Native Americans already have a tough row to hoe. If perspectives - and the associated Overton Window that helps frame them - are still predominantly akin to what my first reading of that paragraph came away with, then there's a very long way to go before beneficial change (for Native Americans, in their perspective) can occur.
A parting thought, also from the Metro Times piece:
"The realization of just how much was stolen from these people begins to set in. It wasn't just their land, or even their way of life. What was taken was their sense of self, leaving them spiritually wounded.
And it was done, in no small part, by taking their children."
Help spread the word & increase awareness: share the links to the Metro Times & NPR pieces. And share a link to Native American Netroots, too: there, people can find a great deal of information - both historical and current - about cultures, customs and ongoing issues.