Freedom of Speech needs "Somebody to Lean On"

What's the first Amendment without the second Amendment? I wonder about that sometimes. Is it safe to exercise unpopular speech in the U.S.? Does our government really really really "keep us safe?" -- Or do we keep ourselves safe? I wonder about that too.
UPDATE AUGUST 18, 2009 Friends of Gun Control from the Past

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Click on Pic for Zoom

UPDATE July 7, 2009 Shreveport concealed-carry citizen has gun confiscated by police for...

Bad Formula for a Country

Lets make sure in America that we disarm dissenters. This will make it easy.

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a TEST you may FAIL?

Hey! What's all the hype about second amendment? Although I have WAY MORE TO SAY RIGHT THIS SECOND THAN I AM DISCLOSING - I would like to take the liberty to ask each and every American reader to try to buy an AK-47 right now - and report back with whether or not you could purchase it.

Lemme know what state and reasons for refusal in the comments section so everybody can see.

I know that the difference between our political judicial joke and France is this: We are INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY whereas THEY ARE GUILTY UNTIL PROVEN INNOCENT!


UPDATE JUNE 30, 2009 Paul Craig Roberts reveals folly of the gun-grabbers

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The BEST argument AGAINST invading Baghdad - EVER! VIDEO

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Map of Iraq

-------------Tom Tomorrow
Great Cartoon by Tom Tomorrow

Jack Rabbit REFUSED Rifle Purchase

My buddy was visiting. We went to a local gun shop. He found a great deal on a certain rifle. I tried to purchase the rifle. Filled out two forms. Salesperson took my drivers license (Virginia) and another card with my address on it. He walked away to do the background thing - I don't know who that is. I gave him a little time to make the call or whatever they do- then went back over to him and he told me "They have a hold on you." When I asked the guy behind the counter why "they" had a "hold on me" he told me "they" don't tell you the reason. I figured as much since my rights aren't REALLY protected by the CONSTITUTION.

I told him forget it and we walked out of the store - my friend astonished that I was turned down since he knows I haven't done anything. On the way home he asked me if I thought the blog had anything to do with it. We figured probably not - probably a glitch in a computer somewhere.

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Test Your Perceptions: Aluminum vs. Iron

     Don't tell me 911 will ever go away. Time to wake up everybody! Drink a cup of coffee or two if you have to! This isn't kidding around time here. You've been spoon-fed a story - and - to use an expression of a past popular Prez - "Trust but Verify."
     That past Prez. would be Reagan. So start verifying what you've been spoon-fed - take a few minutes - ask yourself - Have I been given information that is consistent with my own observations? Just look and listen - figure it out later. Oh - you don't know anything about Thermite? Let's begin with the "it's only aluminum" cover story and continue from there.

     Please watch the videos below. One of the videos below shows orange-yellow dripping metal at the corner of one of the trade center towers from 911. There was a theory that the stuff dripping out the corner of the WTC tower shown in one of the videos was molten aluminum, but alas, molten aluminum ...well watch the first video for that. Then - please watch the second and third - apply common sense - what makes sense to you?

Molten Aluminum at 1800F

Demonstration of Thermite

Interesting Video

UPDATE JUNE 9, 2009 Obama, as on everything else, agrees with Bush on 911:

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Army Mind Reading Helmets for 4 Million Bucks expect "Problems"

I found (click) THIS ARTICLE fascinating. I discussed it with my friend who pointed out why it may not be such a great idea. It's called "The Army's Totally Serious Mind-Control Project" from Time ---Here's an excerpt - then I'll tell you my friend's thoughts:

"Soldiers barking orders at each other is so 20th Century. That's why the U.S. Army has just awarded a $4 million contract to begin developing "thought helmets" that would harness silent brain waves for secure communication among troops. Ultimately, the Army hopes the project will "lead to direct mental control of military systems by thought alone.
If this sounds insane, it would have been as recently as a few years ago. But improvements in computing power and a better understanding of how the brain works have scientists busy hunting for the distinctive neural fingerprints that flash through a brain when a person is talking to himself. The Army's initial goal is to capture those brain waves with incredibly sophisticated software that then translates the waves into audible radio messages for other troops in the field. "It'd be radio without a microphone, " says Dr. Elmar Schmeisser, the Army neuroscientist overseeing the program. "Because soldiers are already trained to talk in clean, clear and formulaic ways, it would be a very small step to have them think that way."

Some possible concomitant hazards my friend pointed out with this system could involve gays in the military: Why? Because if one of the guys in the unit had a crush on another guy in the unit - problems could result as those brainwave messages were translated to - well I suppose everybody. Another problem would be with "complaint thoughts" in cases where soldiers' minds were read while they were wondering who the hell spent 4 million bucks on mind reading helmets and that they were idiots - couldn't the transmission of these messages jeopardize future promotions? Also "thou shalt not covet thy neigbor's wife" issues ruin unit cohesiveness. Another scenario could be with the enemy capturing a headset and reading the minds of soldiers plugged into the same network.

It is predicted that these and many other problems expected during development of this high tech wizardry should be sufficient to provide quite a gravy train for the developers.

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I looked up the word "shill" and realized it needs to be extirpated from the English language, because it is based on the possibility of two or more people collaborating to commit a crime, an idea that could only be arrived at after coming up with a "false conspiracy theory." Since anyone considering a "false conspiracy theory" (according to say, Faux News and some Constitutional Scholars) is a loon, I must be a loon for considering it. Therefore I must not under any circumstances think that thought. After all, there are no shills on TV are there?

You can find a definition HERE.

"Shills are often employed by confidence artists. The term plant is also used. Shill bidding, found on many auction sites such as eBay, is punishable by law[1] and may result in fines and or prosecution."

...and although definitions are very important EXAMPLES are priceless for clarification of concept; so click on the following link and take a look-see: "RAW STORY: Pentagon used psychological operation on US public, documents show" An excerpt from the article:

" In Part I of this series, Raw Story revealed that Bryan Whitman, the current deputy assistant secretary of defense for media operations, was an active senior participant in a Bush administration covert Pentagon program that used retired military analysts to generate positive wartime news coverage.

A months-long review of documents and interviews with Pentagon personnel has revealed that the Bush Administration's military analyst program -- aimed at selling the Iraq war to the American people -- operated through a secretive collaboration between the Defense Department's press and community relations offices.

Raw Story has also uncovered evidence that directly ties the activities undertaken in the military analyst program to an official US military document’s definition of psychological operations -- propaganda that is only supposed to be directed toward foreign audiences.

(Pssst..... articles referenced demonstrating that propagandists are planted in our media are posted only for the sake of example. Do not allow the facts presented to spark conspiratorial thoughts of the existence shills.)

Please also ignore the information linked in this "Behind TV Analysts, Pentagon’s Hidden Hand" article which includes portraits of the jolly propagandists who fed disinformation to an electrified war-mad American public. Here's a sample:

"To the public, these men are members of a familiar fraternity, presented tens of thousands of times on television and radio as “military analysts” whose long service has equipped them to give authoritative and unfettered judgments about the most pressing issues of the post-Sept. 11 world.

Hidden behind that appearance of objectivity, though, is a Pentagon information apparatus that has used those analysts in a campaign to generate favorable news coverage of the administration’s wartime performance, an examination by The New York Times has found.
 --paragraphs later---
...members of this group have echoed administration talking points, sometimes even when they suspected the information was false or inflated. Some analysts acknowledge they suppressed doubts because they feared jeopardizing their access.

A few expressed regret for participating in what they regarded as an effort to dupe the American public with propaganda dressed as independent military analysis.

---paragraphs later---
... Kenneth Allard, a former NBC military analyst who has taught information warfare at the National Defense University, said the campaign amounted to a sophisticated information operation. “This was a coherent, active policy,” he said.

But don't let the facts fool you because the very existence of shills is dependent upon YOUR willingness to entertain the outlandish notion that a conspiracy may be afoot. Such dangerous thoughts, known as "false conspiracy theories" have been identified by
brilliant Law Pontiffs as danger signals requiring you to be stripped of your inalienable right to free speech.

Conclusion: Since the very word "shill" implies a "conspiracy," I must, as a Patriotic American, expunge the word from my vocabulary thereby preventing "BAD THOUGHTS." This process will "KEEP ME SAFE" from "TERRORISTS" in the "HOMELAND" who may have broken through "SECURITY." Now I feel "TERRORIZED" like a "WIMP."

Got that? Now practice your new skills as a robot by watching this segment from Howard Stern. Remember not to consider anything requiring consideration of conspiracy or treason:

WTC7 AE911Truth VIDEO 10 minutes

911Blogger is a frequently updated and informative site on which I found the video below:


Fox News Clowns try to discredit Jesse Ventura

You see... nobody on this TV set wants to be waterboarded, and they don't want their kids waterboarded - and if somebody waterboarded their kids they'd be thanking this brave gentleman for coming forward and speaking out. But in this case, knowing Jesse Ventura is so popular, they WILL have him on the show because he draws such a HUGE audience. So while they never hesitate to benefit from the "coat tail" effect - that is - the ratings assured by the very presence of this heroic guest - they also have to take the time to "act tough" while he's there with their feigned "patriotism." Gawd gimme a barf bag.

One of the weaklings on the set asks Jesse "Are you OK Now?" after Jesse mentions he was waterboarded in SERE school.

The weaklings on the set bring up great points like "...only three guys were waterboarded..." What if the weakling on the TV set were one of the three people waterboarded? How about his child? Is it still such a moot point?

I love how these brave and daring TV personalities, that somehow keep their jobs on Murdoch's propaganda channel, can run their mouths criticizing Jesse! Look how brave they are! He's the only one on the set who has actually been waterboarded!

It's funny to me how the punk yelling at Jesse loves physical violence when it is applied to others, but the whole time he excercises his freedom of speech on TV, there is one thing obvious to me ---- that is --- that if there were no rule of law Jesse Ventura could pick him up and throw him through a wall - cement probably. Now isn't that interesting - rule of law is great when it works for me, but who cares if it is just some Muslim? This seems to be the attitude on this pathetic TV feel-good fakery show. The minute somebody like Jesse Ventura comes on, somebody with some real balls who "Walked the Walk" but tells the truth - suddenly they are attacked. What else would one expect from this exercise in propaganda?

Pay close attention to the character assassination of their guest to prep the TV viewers before he comes on...

UPDATE MAY 0, 2009 ON SHILLS please click here

A Solution to Torture? A Conversation Starter...

Torture Scenario: I walk out of my front door and notice my neighbor is waterboarding a stranger. What do I do? I can't call the cops because I live out in the middle of the boondocks - no police available. I ask my neighbor to stop torturing the person. They won't. Should I walk back into my house, grab a 9mm and point it at the torturer and ask again? Then what? Pull the trigger? I don't want to kill them, I just want to stop the torture.

Given that - can you see the analogy with torture going on in the United States today? The only difference I see is that instead of the torture going on in my front yard and somewhere like Gitmo - is DISTANCE. Well - one other difference - in the case of the U.S. Government commiting the crime of torture - I AM ULTIMATELY RESPONSIBLE BECAUSE IT IS BEING DONE ON MY BEHALF WITH MY TAX MONEY.

It seems that the debate is over. Look at the poll at the top of this blog - everybody wants torturers to go to jail.

So, Obama won't do anything - we've asked and given him time. HE SPIT IN OUR FACE!

Congress won't do anything - we've given them time. THEY'VE SPIT IN OUR FACE!


Remember the bailout? Masses of citizens flooded their Congressmen with letters and emails - guess what? Obama and McCain both went right back up to Washington and voted FOR the bailout against the wishes of the American public - and against the best interests of the American public. THEY SPIT IN OUR FACE!

So - what can be done about torture? There are fellow HUMAN BEINGS being abused right now.

Perhaps it is time to revisit Mike Gravel's NATIONAL INITIATIVE WHICH IF PUT INTO LAW EMPOWERS THE CITIZENRY. Is this a good solution? Is this a perfect solution? I don't know - but I'm opening up the discussion. We need action - take a look - debate it - talk about it - consider it - come up with something else. But let's all find a way to get past the smokescreen of propaganda and move toward workable solutions.


What is the National Initiative for Democracy?

"The National Initiative for Democracy (NI4D) is a proposed Constitutional amendment which recognizes the Peoples' right to make laws and a federal law which spells out orderly procedures for the People to develop and vote on laws.
The Democracy Amendment, a proposed amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America, will:
recognize the legislative power of the people to make laws
permit the people to amend the constitution by holding two successive elections, more than six months but less than one year apart
sanction the election for The National Initiative permitting the enactment of the Democracy Amendment and the Democracy Act (*),
create the Electoral Trust to administer the procedures established by the Democracy Amendment and Act,
outlaw the use of funds from non-natural persons (for example corporate funds) in initiative elections under this article, and
outlaw non-natural persons (for example corporations) from sponsoring initiatives under this article.
The Democracy Act, a proposed federal law, will:
set out deliberative procedures to be used by citizens to create laws by initiative,
describe the key responsibilities of the Electoral Trust which shall administer the initiative process on behalf of the people,
appropriate funds for the Electoral Trust from the United States Treasury, and
specify the threshold of affirmative votes needed to enact this legislation (*).
The National Initiative does not change or eliminate Congress, the President, or the judicial system. Laws created by initiative must still stand up in the courts just like laws created by Congress. The National Initiative adds an additional check –– the People –– to our system of checks and balances, while setting up a working partnership between the People and their elected representatives.
Voting "yes" means that you are for the Democracy Amendment and Democracy Act
Voting "no" means that you are against the Democracy Amendment and Democracy Act
(*) This legislation will be considered enacted when the number of affirmative votes exceeds half the total number of government-validated votes cast in the presidential election occurring immediately prior to this election's certification. A total of 131,131,981 people voted in the 2008 presidential election, therefore at this time 65,565,991 "yes" votes for the National Initiative are required."

We already know our elected representatives are UNRESPONSIVE TO THE AMERICAN PUBLIC'S WILL TO STOP TORTURE! Peaceful change is the goal.

Remember JFK's words:
"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. "


Jesse Ventura on 'The View' - Destroys Torture Arguments

Once again - a patriot steps forward to destroy the Demopublican misdirection we've all come to know. "Torture is torture" Jesse says - I AGREE.

Why so often in the media does this become a technical brain cramp? Jesse does a great job of deflecting the "Nancy Pelosi said this" and "so-and-so did that." He also easily dismisses arguments claiming waterboarding is effective as a truth-finding tool.

So sit back and watch a guy with guts and brains dice 'em and slice 'em. Thanks Jesse!

Yes! There is hope for America!



My Torture Dream ...........

I had a dream about American institutionalized torture ending suddenly. I'd read THIS STORY BY JEREMY SCAHILL regarding Gitmo horrors and just had to get away from the news. To add to the the HOPELESSNESS of this matter I came across a similar article (CLICK HERE) discussing the continuation of this inquisition under our newest charmer in the White House.

I need a rest - to close my eyes and forget this nightmare period of American history. From Scahill's article:
"...blows to [the] testicles;" "detention underground in total darkness for three weeks with deprivation of food and sleep;" being "inoculated … through injection with 'a disease for dog cysts;'" the smearing of feces on prisoners; and waterboarding. The torture, according to the Spanish investigation, all occurred "under the authority of American military personnel" and was sometimes conducted in the presence of medical professionals."

Geez what happened to the Hippocratic Oath ? Medical Professionals involved in torture and prisoner abuse? Good thing I wasn't around to see that.

Anyway - the dream started with prisoners at Gitmo, suddenly being freed by a force of people who took the matter into their own hands. In fact it seemed to go just like THIS PRISON BREAK story. From the story:
"The early-morning jailbreak, which took less than five minutes and involved no violence, was carried out by 20 heavily armed men who arrived in 10 vehicles and a helicopter, they said."

Then I awoke and reality hit me. It had to be a dream. After all -how crazy of a thought is it to imagine anyone sticking their neck out for what is right as opposed to for money? Amazing isn't it? A drug cartel can get their folks out of jail without actual violence while we sit here observing our politicians doing no more than running their mouths. The grim reality of modern Amerika - where nothing ever really gets done. Just a lot of hogwash, legal wrangling, finger pointing, excuses etc... until the public attention is masterfully redirected to some trivial manufactured event.

Waking up - unfortunately was one of those times where I awoke from a pleasant dream into a living nightmare.
UPDATE MAY 17, 2009 To Free the Oppressed ...I suppose there is a disclaimer - I guess nobody reads Latin in that outfit - or considers abused unconvicted prisoners "oppressed."
"Their official motto is De Oppresso Liber (Latin: To Liberate the Oppressed)" - might I add: "unless ordered not to!" Get a new motto: here's a suggestion "To further Empire"
UPDATE MAY 18, 2009 Contractors hired by CIA involved per PBS

Where Does OSHA fit into American Torture Procedure?

This may seem a bit odd - but I have to ask the question: Where does OSHA stand on torture procedure?

Let's start with some TORTURE PICTURES. Not to get too technical here but I see a lot of blood from the tortured victims visible in these pictures. How can I be sure proper procedures were followed to protect the "employees" who were torturing the "terrorists?" Actually I don't care if a torturer gets a bloodborne disease - I figure - hey they deserve it. I mean - doesn't every torturer deserve to have their own eyes poked out too? Isn't what is good for the goose good for the gander?

But I'm not a hater - but I'd probably hate anybody torturing me. Or, how about anybody torturing ... ANY CREATURE? I would not allow the torture of anybody or anything in my presence. I'd have to resort to physical means to stop torture if words didn't work - for example - in my front yard. I can assure the reader that if I walked outside of my home and saw any type of torture going on - say a dog, a cat, a child - isn't it my DUTY as a HUMAN BEING to put an immediate stop to it?

But since I'm dealing with what seem to be zombified Americans - I'd like to stick to procedure. What I am interested in is whether or not the torturers I financed, as an American taxpayer, didn't suffer hearing damage from the screams of their victims. I want to make sure my tax dollars are not wasted on sadistic robots who can't hear. I want sadistic robots with GOOD hearing! I am not an audiologist - but from the amount of blood spatter visible in the pictures linked above, I'd say there were a lot of horrible screams going on. I know I would scream if someone was smashing my face in, or using BUGS (insects) to torture me, or "persuading" me with electric current to my genitals to admit that I am indeed a witch. Hell - I'd tell them I was the tooth fairy to make it stop - but...

CLICK HERE for genuine guidelines provided by OSHA. If anyone can decode this government document it may be helpful to ensure our United States Torturers' hearing is protected. Heaven forfend their precious ears suffer damage due to "high noise" levels! After all since my fellow Americans, for the most part, seem apathetic to the suffering of torture victims, maybe they can find a place in their black hearts for the torturERS they finance.

What happened to my country?
UPDATE MAY 17, 2009 Thug Squad continues under Barry O
UPDATE MAY 17, 2009 Wiki on Scream Levels
"The human range for screaming in decibels is between 0 and 112.8 which is the world record held by Alan Myatt.[2]The pitch varies depending on the justification for a scream."
--JR--> I'll bet the "terrorists" you and I paid to have tortured via tax dollars would give the world record holder a run for his money--
UPDATE MAY 17, 2009 OSHA on bloodborne pathogens
UPDATE MAY 17, 2009 Jeremy Scahill's article HERE paints a grim pic


Anger Management: BAD IDEA!

Are you angry? No? I am! Look around on this blog - it oughta' be obvious. What about? Can I blame it on my childhood in coal mining country up in Northeastern Pennsylvania? Well... that's part of it - but not the relevant part. (Lots of anger in that area.)

I'm pissed because as an American I'm culpable for TORTURE! If you pay your taxes so are you! (If you are an American taxpayer)

A stretch? What do YOU spend YOUR money on? Do you buy products made in China? Do you buy locally made products? Do you have a choice? Yes - you do - and I won't /can't judge you on how you "vote" with your dollar.

But when you pay your taxes blindly "trusting" your government is spending your money wisely - while remaining uninformed about the ends realized from the means you helped to provide in the form of taxes - there I would find a point of contention.

Years ago my nephew turned his laptop to face me and showed me this:

... a video of WTC7 collapsing like an imploded building. That was a big turning point for me because it made me finally realize the degree of deceit foisted upon America by our corporate propagandists posing as journalists. It's a long story, but after I regained my composure, I started a blog - the one you are reading. My point is that ANGER MOTIVATED ME POSITIVELY TO DO SOMETHING. Am I doing enough? Perhaps not - I'm working on it - but instead of allowing my anger to muddy my rational thought - I've allowed it to push me to exercise my first amendment right of free speech.

If you are not angry about the fact that as an American taxpayer you are responsible for financing a sadistic culture that talks about torture as if the topic deserves credibility - I've got news for you - WAKE UP! Consider this HERO Lt. Watada - standing alone as he takes the heat for upholding his duty as an officer duty bound to disobey illegal orders:

If you have a son, daughter, anyone you care about in the military - realize - your government is setting them up for the most horrible treatment by foes - torture! Yes! That's right! After all, what are you going to complain about if America tortures too?

Get angry - channel that anger into action - speak your mind - bring up the difficult stuff. Speak UNPOPULAR speech!

Citizen > Consumer

I should mention that the idea for this article sprung from a conversation with a good friend regarding anger. It was only after he'd pointed out to me the positive results of channeled anger - that I realized - hey - maybe anger isn't so bad after all?


FDR vs. Obama

Here we have FDR talking about what he has done in three months: (foreclosures especially - at 0:50 seconds)

Now look at today - too early to judge Obama - it's only been three months you see...

Do we ask enough of our politicians today? Perhaps they need to act like statesmen - not politicians.
"On April 30 the primacy of special over public interests was demonstrated yet again. The Democrats’ bill to prevent 1.7 million mortgage foreclosures and, thus, preserve $300 billion in home equity by permitting homeowners to renegotiate their mortgages, was defeated in the Senate, despite the 60-vote majority of the Democrats. The banksters were able to defeat the bill 51 to 45. "


The CIA is hiring: Experienced Torturers Needed - (no Muslims need apply)

Take a look at (CLICK) this article regarding torture of prisoners in the custody of MY GOVERNMENT! From the article:

"Who the hell authorizes these things?" Soufan reportedly asked the chief CIA officer in Thailand, as Mitchell began stripping the prisoner and blasting him with music from the Red Hot Chili Peppers."

     So here I sit, with only news articles to tell me what my government is up to (that would be torture.)   Thankfully there are some brave souls willing to become "whistleblowers" because their conscience prevents restful sleep knowing torture is going on at the hands of the government of the land of the free and the home of the brave.  

     Whistleblower = Hero.  Talk about standing alone for principle while the rest of the herd watches you hang.  The whistleblowers are the ones that oughta' be put in charge.  They are the only true leaders - it isn't their fault if their comrades don't have the guts or the sense to follow them in doing what is right.  I suppose torture isn't a form of terrorism, because if it were, we'd have to accuse members of our own government of terrorism.  

    Wait - we have a new president - Obama - he'll stop the torture right?  Well yeah, kind of... but not right now. Consider (CLICK) this article for the reality. From the article:

"The most direct consequence of releasing them, I believe, would be to further inflame anti-American opinion and to put our troops in greater danger," the president said before departing on his trip to Arizona. "Moreover, I fear the publication of these photos may only have a chilling effect on future investigations of detainee abuse."

     Ah yes - the old "National Security" routine!  Somehow this tired pathetic sorry-ass excuse is dredged up again from the sewer of doublespeak by the champion of "Change We Can Believe In."  So lets see no evil, speak no evil, hear no evil - essentially live in denial that we Americans are joining the ranks of nations that torture.  So I ask those of you who voted for Obama - how do you deal with Obama's inaction on torture?   What do you tell yourself to rationalize this failure to fulfill campaign promises?  Oh that's right - all he promised you was "hope"- it's gonna' be tough collecting on that contract.  But stopping torturers?  Facing down the military-industrial complex?  That would require big cajones.  Does he have them?  Maybe - but what I see missing is a genuine desire to change the culture condoning torture.  Instead I see a skillful politician "looking busy" for the corporate media - but in reality doing nothing.  As to why - I'll leave that up to the reader.

     Thankfully - the "problem" (torture) is only with CIA - not the military - right?  At least we Americans can rely on our military to stick with their oaths. At least we can count on our military professionals to take care of our boys and girls fighting terror in the hot sandy Middle East - right? Well... NO ... what about (CLICK) this story? From the story:

"US soldiers are now being forced to steal water in Iraq. With supplies tight, and the number of trucks carrying potable water even tighter, troops have resorted to stealing water from civilian contractors. Many have also reportedly suffered from dysentery because they were forced to drink untreated water from Iraqi wells. ... It gets worse. Soldiers say the situation has become so dire they were forced to raid the United States’ own airbase in Baghdad for bottled water. They found the water stored in pallets held by civilian contractors, who were supposed to be distributing it."

     Perhaps I'm just a bleeding heart. I mean - how important can water be in the middle of that sandbox? Can't the troops build solar stills and distill their own urine to make water? Yes - this must be some deliberate effort by our military leaders to "toughen-up" the troops and test their desert survival skills.  Bullsh*t!!  I'm trying really hard to understand why somebody isn't losing their job and suffering severely for not providing water to soldiers.  Perhaps only enlisted are suffering - maybe that would explain it.

     But - at least the military gets it right on the important stuff - like Pat Tillman. Oh, that's right - if one considers (CLICK) this story there is more reason for concern regarding what we are being told vs. what is actually going on. From the article:

"The parents of slain Army Ranger and NFL star Pat Tillman voiced concerns Tuesday that the general who played a role in mischaracterizing his death could be put in charge of military operations in Afghanistan."

----but rest assured my fellow Americans - we later hear from a government spokesperson:

"We feel terrible for what the Tillman family went through, but this matter has been investigated thoroughly by the Pentagon, by the Congress, by outside experts, and all of them have come to the same conclusion: that there was no wrongdoing by Gen. McChrystal," Morrell said."

----hmm, contradictions - who will sort this out?
"Aides to the top Democrat and Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, which will consider the nomination, said they were unaware of any opposition to McChrystal."

----OK - this makes more sense - the watchdogs are asleep as usual - this, at least, sounds credible. UNAWARE!  

     Anyway getting back to the original topic before I got sidetracked - jobs are tough to find these days so put the word out if you have any friends who are talented torturers.  Another job opening is for psychiatric and medical specialists who can keep the accused, I mean terrorist alive, so we can keep torturing them and deny them the gift of death.  Any torturers out there? - AMERICA NEEDS YOU!
Sign up at your local CIA recruiter today.
Applicants take note - Torturers are expected to bring their own "equipment" - bamboo shoots, waterboarding apparatus, rack, vise for crushing skulls, hibachi for heating red-hot-pokers.  Applicants resume must demonstrate ability to torture someone to the limit of human endurance without causing death.  High peanut oil prices forbid expenditure of government funds for boiling prisoners in oil.  Ear protection required by OSHA to protect torturers from hearing damage due to victims screams.

Innocent until proven guilty is the law of the land in America? You Decide-------

UPDATE MAY 14, 2009 JESSE VENTURA on Larry King regarding torture
VENTURA: It's drowning. It gives you the complete sensation that you are drowning. It is no good, because you -- I'll put it to you this way, you give me a water board, Dick Cheney and one hour, and I'll have him confess to the Sharon Tate murders.
UPDATE McGovern LEADS THE WAY - Where is the support from the intel community?
"I asked again why he stopped the review, but was shouted down by an audience not used to having plain folks ask direct questions of very senior officials, past or present."
UPDATE MAY 15, 2009 GRAPHIC TORTURE PICTURES - your tax dollars at work
UPDATE MAY 16, 2009 McChrystal and Pelosi


A Quote from Winston Churchill

"You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life."


Why are Wars Fought?

     Are there modern parallels with the motives of past aggressor nations? Are there reasons to go to war other than for "freedom" or to "fight terror?"
     Take a look (CLICK) here for an interesting story of resource maps carried by Japanese soldiers into China. Are there modern parallels today?  From the article:

     " The map, titled Resource Map of Iron Ore, Sulfur and Coal in North Zhina (a derogatory term of China used by Japanese), was drawn to a scale of 1:2 000 000 and can be folded into the size of a 32mo (a measurement of book size) book. In short, it is portable. It was published in March 1940 by a Japanese press in south Manchuria.
     Besides marking the distribution, the map classifies resources into different categories. For example, iron ore is categorized into phospho-iron ores, pyrites and ferromanganese ores -- or Zunhua Ore, Datong Ore and Qingdao Ore depending on the production area.
     Transportation networks linking production areas to counties and villages are also detailed."

     What reasons have Americans been given for current wars? Do we have good reason to be skeptical? Would a look at the reliability of past information be a good reason to ask: "Where is the Evidence?"

     Many Americans accept the stated goals of America - after all wouldn't somebody say something if "War on Terror" was a meaningless statement? Surely our great Universities would ensure that statements around which our nations foreign and domestic policies are fashioned would pass the same test as a thesis statement!
       Alas - in reality there has been little outcry from American academia or mainstream media exposing the phrase "War on Terror" for the mindless statement it really is - just the sound of one hand clapping as this Pavlovian bell is rung over and over and over again to the American masses. Instead of a lesson from our great professors busy taking up expensive space and breathing expensive air at our non-iconoclastic universities on how to properly define a problem- we are treated to the sounds of our own cries for truth - not even answered by so much as an echo from the hollow abyss that is most of academia today.
     That said, with a little work one can find many explanations contrary to or never mentioned by American mainstream media for current conflicts. Who are we to believe? So before you answer why America fights wars please consider what a  two-time Medal of Honor winner told us a long time ago:  
---------- UPDATE Good film on the topic? -----------


A Book Review: The New Epistemology of Morality and Truth by Don Robertson

I don't know where to begin. The very mention of philosophy, let alone Epistemology, almost guarantees audience abandonment - unless the audience consists of philosophers I suppose. But wait - we are all philosophers to some degree - since philosophy springs from our natural sense of wonder (Plato?).  So we all practice philosophy to some extent. But as citizens and human beings - does each of us really do as much as we should be doing?  Perhaps this review of Don Robertson's book The New Epistemology of Morality and Truth will:

1. Demonstrate the relevance of this seemingly obscure topic to the "real world" of the reader.
2. Provide a fair analysis with a critical eye.

Before I discuss the book I think it is fair to give some background on myself so the reader can decide whether or not to assign value to my observations and opinions regarding this philosophical topic. I admit that I am interested in philosophy - and that my interest led to study focused mainly on Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. Some of my ramblings can be found on this blog. So let's begin.

My first impressions of the book itself, The New Epistemology of Morality and Truth:

1. Epistemology? I have to look that up. Does this have something to do with religion?
2. Who is the woman depicted in the cover art? The look on her face reminds me of the expression on my own wife's face each time I bring up philosophical topics. Could this cover art portray Don's poor wife as he discusses philosophy for the umpteenth time? I'm joking.
3. Morality and Truth? Good luck! I can't wait to see this! Define morality? Define Truth?
4. Who came up with this title? It can't be someone trying to generate reader interest - can it?

So I began by looking up Epistemology. Yes, I admit it, I didn't know the definition so according to my Apple dictionary:

epistemology |iˌpistəˈmäləjē|
noun Philosophy
the theory of knowledge, esp. with regard to its methods, validity, and scope. Epistemology is the investigation of what distinguishes justified belief from opinion.

In other words - how do we know that which we believe is true - really is? So this is not an obscure or impractical subject - quite the opposite - Epistemology is an uncommon word for what should be a common act. This is what this book is all about. This is a book not just for the philosopher - but for everyone. It is a wake-up call, a challenge for all of us - to think very critically about everything we think we know. Why? Because unless we examine our assumptions we cannot find where we are mistaken - limiting ourselves to a world painted for us by artists with agendas - rather than a world we've done our damnedest to verify.  Whether buying a new car, voting, or evaluating the validity of the latest world crisis fed to us via TV - we must individually get to the facts.  But how does The New Epistemology of Morality and Truth help us get from where we are now to where we need to be? And why should we bother?

Don Robertson's book begins by blazing a trail right through the heart of academia - mincing no words - sparing no one. He sets an example for iconoclasts and critical thinkers - in a way that is blunt enough to get through the thickest of skulls - even my own. He removes all shame from the act of doubting anyone and everything - he leads by example. Whether you agree with him or not - it is refreshing to me, at least, to read something so free of ulterior motive. But the author must have some motive right? For sure.

I can't speak for the author, only myself, but I detect that the motive of the book is to improve the human condition. Don Robertson has provided his "Moral Imperative of Life" as a guide toward this end. It is:

"The moral imperative of life is to live a life that detracts not at all from the lives available to those who will follow us into this world."

This concise rule is the author's distillation of much thought and study - brief, to the point, and in my opinion a damned good idea. Much elaboration is provided hashing out the details so the reader can understand fully the author's viewpoint. Toward the end of the book we find more valuable contrarian ideas - good ideas that need to be heard. Ideas about the power of the individual and how we can exercise that power.

I found The New Epistemology of Morality and Truth an excellent book and highly recommend it to all readers - especially readers who vote. This book is unique in that the blunt honesty removes all preconceived notions the reader may have right off the bat - worrying not about hurting anybody's feelings. Although at first glance it may seem harsh, the persistent reader will find that the brutal honesty saves much time - since the reader can forget author's motives and focus on the subject matter. I wish more books were so proudly politically incorrect.

Finally - I must offer one critical point regarding the "Moral Imperative of Life." How can anyone know that the consequences of their actions will indeed turn out for the good? Often a person will take action they think will do exactly as stated by the Moral Imperative - but it seems to me there are always unknowns that will limit homo sapiens. For example a friend sent me a parable describing a man watching a moth/butterfly struggling to emerge from its cocoon. He thought that by doing some of the work for the creature, helping get the cocoon out of the way for it, relieving the creature of this struggle, that he was doing good. But what he didn't know was that this struggle was necessary for the creature to inflate it's wings. In the end he harmed the creature. So it goes with the moral imperative - there is no way to be sure that our actions will result in good due to the unknown.

However - despite the above criticism - we must be bold - we must try - we must exercise our personal power without fear. And this is what this book is all about - to think about what we do, why we do it, what knowledge we base our actions on, how any self-proclaimed expert can claim to know the truth more than we can  - and how we can leave this world a better place than we found it for those who follow.  What could be more important?


American Torture: Would you like your teeth knocked out with your Apple Pie?

   I never thought I'd see the day where discussions about torture would go very far. Torture was one of those things that we accused others of - our enemies. Torture was one of those unthinkable acts that clearly defined the difference between US and THEM - you know, the bad people, our enemies. Americans defeated torturers. The decision was simple - torture is disgusting and wrong - what else is there to talk about? Read on.

     Today I came across (CLICK) this article From the article:

     " Alberto Mora says it’s “politically unthinkable” to criminally prosecute the top         Bush administration officials who sanctioned torture. He also says it’s “legally unthinkable” not to hold them accountable."

     Suddenly things become complicated. In today's America it isn't that simple. Now we have to contend with pros and cons, those who gave the order vs. who followed the orders, left vs. right politics and on and on. We can't, it seems, take action because the consequences will "tear the country apart." Meanwhile the criminals responsible escape stage left.

     What about those who've been directly involved in torture, or the observation of torture? What happens to these folks? Are they all bad? I found (CLICK) this story of Alyssa Peterson. From the linked story:

      "Appalled when ordered to take part in interrogations that, no doubt, involved what we would call torture, she refused, then killed herself a few days later, in September 2003."

     Who will take action on her behalf? Who will make sure history won't repeat itself? Perhaps Shepard Smith, of all people, expressing what once was, in this once great country, where torture was so clearly wrong... (warning - appropriate offensive language)

UPDATE MAY 3, 2009 Historian Alfred McCoy: Obama Reluctance on Bush Prosecutions Affirms Culture of Impunity-with Video
UPDATE MAY 3, 2009 Sen. Patrick Leahy - agreeing we need the truth - but not tough enough on the administration
UPDATE MAY 3, 2009 Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity - Open Letter to Obama

UPDATE MAY 4, 2009 America's Shame - Eric MargolisFrom the article:
"When I served in the US Army, I was taught that any illegal order, even from the president, must be refused and that mistreating prisoners was a crime.
President Obama must show the world that America upholds the law, rejects torture of all kinds, and that no officials are above the law. Otherwise, there is no other way to prevent the recurrence of torture in the future."
UPDATE MAY 4, 2009 US Torture History-AJ Langguth
UPDATE MAY 5, 2009 Condi Rice stumbles when kid asks about torture -with video
UPDATE MAY 6, 2009 Bush Officials Try to Alter Ethics Report
UPDATE MAY 8, 2009 Democrats were routinely briefed on Bush torture techniques
UPDATE MAY 13, 2009 FBI Whistleblower


Hooray! Today is 6th Anniversary of Operation Iraqi Freedom Fries-with Video

UPDATE MAY 1, 2009 Bush admin. created DHS "Rightwing Extremism Document NOT Obama administration - Kurt Nimmo
UPDATE MAY 1, 2009 Obama's Iraq - Jeremy Scahill
UPDATE MAY 2, 2009 Uniformed Iraqi kills U.S. Soldiers
UPDATE MAY 3, 2009 A look back at corporate media fawning of the event
Check out this Wiki article so you can join the celebration on this festive day commemorating the fruit of Bush's labors. From the article:

"The vast majority of casualties, among both coalition (approximately 98.3% as of October 2008) and Iraqi combatants, and among Iraqi civilians, has occurred since the speech."

Mission Accomplished!