The Evening Blues - 11-23-15



eb1pt12

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features doo-wop, r&b and rock n' roll group, The Coasters. Enjoy!

The Coasters - Smokey Joe's Cafe

"Just because a band of murderers and fanatics declare war, we shouldn’t fall into the trap of outbidding them.”

-- Dominique De Villepin


News and Opinion

Nuremberg Trials: 65 Years Later

65 years after the convening of the Nuremberg Trials at the end of World War II only few participants are still alive to share experiences of this landmark judicial event of the 20th century. As the longest serving interpreter, covering the main international trial from 1945 to 1946 and 12 subsequent proceedings until 1949, I was invited by the city of Vienna and by a federation of interpreters and translators in Germany to share highlights and impressions. My visits and speaking engagements at various academic and community venues in Austria and Germany related to the German language edition of my memoirs entitled “Nuremberg and Beyond – The Memoirs of Siegfried Ramler – From 20th Century Europe to Hawaii.” ...

An undercurrent running through the revelations at the trials raised a fundamental question: how was it possible for such atrocities to be committed in the name of Germany, a nation with a rich cultural tradition in literature, science and the arts, a pillar of European civilization? When speaking or writing about Nuremberg, I respond to this question by extending it beyond Germany and giving it a universal significance.

When checks on governmental power and control do not exist, when a dictatorship disregards and nullifies existing laws, when the achievement of a desired end for a nation justifies any means to obtain it, when persecution of segments of a population becomes government policy, and when the world community fails to react to crimes being committed by a dictatorship, the result leads to the abyss into which Germany descended during the Nazi period. In this sense the Nuremberg legacy, as a cornerstone of international law, takes on a universal significance beyond the role of Germany during the Hitler regime.

CNN Punished Its Own Journalist for Fulfilling a Core Duty of Journalism

CNN yesterday suspended its global affairs correspondent, Elise Labott, for two weeks for the crime of posting a tweet critical of the House vote to ban Syrian refugees. Whether by compulsion or choice, she then groveled in apology. ... This all happened after the Washington Post’s Erik Wemple complained that her original tweet showed “bias.” The claim that CNN journalists must be “objective” and are not permitted to express opinions is an absolute joke. CNN journalists constantly express opinions without being sanctioned.

Labott’s crime wasn’t that she expressed an opinion. It’s that she expressed the wrong opinion: After Paris, defending Muslims, even refugees, is strictly forbidden. ... I could literally spend the rest of the day pointing to opinions expressed by CNN journalists for which they were not suspended or punished in any way. [See article for litany of examples. - js] ...

But there’s a more important point here than CNN’s transparently farcical notion of “objectivity.” In the wake of Paris, an already ugly and quite dangerous anti-Muslim climate has exploded. The leading GOP presidential candidate is speaking openly of forcing Muslims to register in databases, closing mosques, and requiring Muslims to carry special ID cards. Another candidate, Rand Paul, just introduced a bill to ban refugees almost exclusively from predominantly Muslim and/or Arab countries. Others are advocating exclusion of Muslim refugees (Cruz) and religious tests to allow in only “proven Christians” (Bush).

That, by any measure, is a crisis of authoritarianism. And journalists have historically not only been permitted, but required, to raise their voice against such dangers. Indeed, that is one of the primary roles of journalism: to serve as a check on extremism when stoked by political demagogues.

It’s not hard to envision the impact that this CNN action will have on the next journalist who considers speaking up the way Labott (very mildly) just did: They know doing so could imperil their career. In the face of the kind of emerging extremism now manifest in the U.S. (and Europe), that journalistic climate neuters journalists, renders them impotent and their function largely irrelevant, and — by design or otherwise — obliterates a vital check on tyrannical impulses. But that’s what happens when media outlets are viewed principally as corporate assets rather than journalistic ones: Their overriding goal is to avoid saying or doing anything that will create conflict between them and those who wield the greatest power.

Paris Attacks: Exclusive interview with Glenn Greenwald on FRANCE24

ISIS defeats France as authoritarians suppress civil liberties and public gets in line.

Unease, But Little Opposition as France Curbs Basic Freedoms

Still traumatized by the ISIS terror attacks in Paris, the French public is largely looking the other way as the government moves to dramatically curtail basic freedoms the Republic has enjoyed for generations in an increasingly open-ended “state of emergency.”

Police are now free to search people and houses without warrants on suspicion of “conspiratorial activity,” and despite the implication that this was supposed to target terrorism, officials are already using it to raid the homes of people suspected of drug possession and the like.

Likewise, the government is free to place people under “house arrest” and to detain people in an open-ended fashion without charges on any government perception that they may conceivably pose a threat. ...

Incredibly, the Hollande government is using France’s historic claim to be the “birthplace of human rights” as a justification for the new crackdowns on individual liberty, with Prime Minister Manuel Valis insisting security is “the first of all freedoms,” and Hollande insisting that the government’s right to “resistance to oppression” under the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen allows them to carry out such crackdowns as they see fit.

Brussels Is Under High Security Alert, But Will Europe Address Muslims in “Marginalized Ghettos?”

The Left and Right Must Stop the Establishment’s Perpetual War Machine

The major policy debate now is about Syrian refugees.

This is part of a political pattern: The two party establishment agrees on a series of issues and those issues are largely ignored. (Perpetual war.)

Then, there’s something they disagree on and that’s vociferously debated. (Refugees.)

Problem is, sometimes what they agree on (perpetual war) is what causes the other issue (refugees).

Right now, both the Democratic and Republican establishments both agree on a course of perpetual war. There’s virtually no remorse about having pushed for regime change in Syria and Libya and that leading to enormous human suffering that we’re mostly blind to. ...

The issue of the refugees, while obviously real to real people is being seized on because it’s a wedge issue to keep the Democratic base and the Republican base shouting at each other rather than to examine the underlying issue: Perpetual war and the current set of US colonial allies in the Mideast.

There’s a hunger out there for another course. ...

There was a group called Come Home America that aimed to bring the left and right together against Empire.

Part of the reason that didn’t take off is that elections are movement killers. People constantly being pushed – especially in election years – to focus on symptoms of policies gone wrong, like the Syrian refugees, without looking at the elephant in the room: Perpetual War, brought to you by the Democratic and Republican Parties and which ruined the refugees’ lives – and will ruin many more unless the left and right join to stop it.

US special forces to arrive in Syria 'very soon' as Assad hails Russian airstrikes

Dozens of US special operations troops will arrive in Syria “very soon” as promised by president Barack Obama’s administration, a senior official has said.

The troops will help organise local forces battling the self-proclaimed Islamic State in northern Syria, according to special envoy Brett McGurk.

“They will be going in very soon,” McGurk told CBS television’s Face the Nation.

His comments came as Syrian president Bashar al-Assad said his troops were advancing on “nearly every front” in the country’s four-year civil war thanks to Russian airstrikes that began in September.

The embattled president also said he favoured new peace talks to be hosted in Moscow, but stressed that the Syrian conflict could not be resolved without “defeating terrorism”. ...

Russia has coordinated its airstrikes with Damascus, unlike the US-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group, which Assad and his government criticise as ineffectual.

Pepe Escobar does what appears to be a premature victory march; however, in the midst of it he unveils some interesting information, that if true, is quite damning of our "ally" Turkey.

In the Fight Against ISIS, Russia Ain’t Taking No Prisoners

At the G-20 in Antalya, Putin had already, spectacularly,  unveiled who contributes to Daesh’s financing – complete with“examples based on our data on the financing of different [Daesh] units by private individuals.” ...

Additionally, Putin debunked – graphically – to the whole G20 the myth of a Washington seriously engaged on the fight against Daesh:

“I’ve shown our colleagues photos taken from space and from aircraft which clearly demonstrate the scale of the illegal trade in oil.”

He was referring to Daesh’s oil smuggling tanker truck fleet, which numbers over 1,000.

Apparently acting on Russian satellite intelligence, the Pentagon then miraculously managed to find tanker truck convoys stretching“beyond the horizon,” smuggling out stolen Syrian oil. And duly bombed 116 trucks. For the first time. And this in over a year that the‘Coalition of the Dodgy Opportunists’ (CDO) is theoretically fighting Daesh. The only such bombing that happened before was by the Iraqi Air Force. ...

The key reason the Obama administration had not thought about this before is Turkey. Washington needs NATO member Ankara for the use of the Incirlik air base. And then there’s the sensitive subject of who profits from Daesh’s oil smuggling.

Turkish Socialist party member Gursel Tekin has established that Daesh’s smuggled oil is exported to Turkey by BMZ, a shipping company controlled by none other than Bilal Erdogan, son of “Sultan”Erdogan. At a minimum, this violates UN Security Council resolution 2170. Under the light of Putin’s message of going after anyone or any entity engaged in facilitating Daesh’s operations, Erdogan’s clan better come up with some really good excuses.

On Asia Trip, Obama Desperate to Defend ISIS War Strategy

President Obama, in Malaysia as part of his long-planned trip to Asia, was supposed to be focusing heavily on the Pentagon’s “Asia pivot” as the military component of his visit, but instead is finding himself talking non-stop about the ISIS war, eager to defend his existing strategy in the conflict.

Obama is in a tough position in that regard, however, after claiming on the eve of the Paris attacks that ISIS was already successfully “contained.” He credited his strategy for that accomplishment and that’s putting his own estimation of where the war is going into serious doubt.

Pentagon Expands Inquiry Into Intelligence on ISIS Surge

When Islamic State fighters overran a string of Iraqi cities last year, analysts at United States Central Command wrote classified assessments for military intelligence officials and policy makers that documented the humiliating retreat of the Iraqi Army. But before the assessments were final, former intelligence officials said, the analysts’ superiors made significant changes.

In the revised documents, the Iraqi Army had not retreated at all. The soldiers had simply “redeployed.”

Such changes are at the heart of an expanding internal Pentagon investigation of Centcom, as Central Command is known, where analysts say that supervisors revised conclusions to mask some of the American military’s failures in training Iraqi troops and beating back the Islamic State. The analysts say supervisors were particularly eager to paint a more optimistic picture of America’s role in the conflict than was warranted.

In recent weeks, the Pentagon inspector general seized a large trove of emails and documents from military servers as it examines the claims, and has added more investigators to the inquiry.

Report: Israel Has 115 Nukes, 660kg of Plutonium

A new report out of the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) has estimated the size of Israel’s nuclear weapons arsenal at 115 warheads, and notes that the nation is believed to have some 660kg of plutonium. ...

Israel is one of nine states that currently possess nuclear weapons in some form. They are the only one of these nations that does not publicly comment on the existence of its arsenal, and they have no safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Israel’s arsenal has caused considerable problems for efforts to establish a “nuclear-free zone” in the Middle East, with the Obama Administration at one point voting in favor of a nuclear-free proposal for the region then immediately condemning the proposal, after realizing Israel is the only nation in the region with such weapons.

Russia Relaxes Ban on Nuclear Tech Exports to Iran as Putin Meets with Ayatollah Khamenei

Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Iran on the same day the Kremlin issued a formal decree easing an export ban on nuclear equipment and technology to Iran, following a deal reached in July between world powers and Iran on its nuclear program.

According to the decree, Russian firms are now authorized to export hardware and to provide financial and technical advice to help Iran with three specific tasks. The tasks were identified as helping Iran modify two cascades at its Fordow uranium enrichment plant, supporting Iranian efforts to export enriched uranium in exchange for raw uranium supplies, and helping modernize its Arak heavy water reactor. ...

Putin, who will attend a summit of gas exporting countries on Monday in Tehran, is also expected to discuss the Syrian civil war and other issues with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

Crimea without power from Ukraine after electricity pylons 'blown up'

Crimea was left without electricity supplies from Ukraine on Sunday after pylons carrying power lines to the Russia-annexed peninsula were blown up overnight.

It was not immediately clear who had damaged the pylons, but a Russian senator described the move as an "act of terrorism" and implied that Ukrainian nationalists were to blame. ...

Unidentified people attacked power lines leading to Crimea on Friday, after which a group called the Civil Blockade of Crimea prevented Ukrainian energy officials from conducting repairs.

The group, in which Crimean Tatar activists play a prominent role, denied it was responsible for either the attacks on Friday or Saturday night when contacted by Reuters on Sunday. ...

On Saturday, the pylons damaged on Friday were the scene of violent clashes between paramilitary police and Tatars as well as members of the nationalist group Right Sector, Russian media reported.

UN tribunal at The Hague to rule on rival claims to South China Sea islands

Rival claims to strategic reefs and atolls in the disputed waters of the South China Sea are to go before an international tribunal in The Hague.

The hearing on Tuesday – prompted by the Philippines’ claim – comes as China steps up its divisive programme of building airstrips and defences in the Spratly Islands. As well as the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei all dispute sovereignty over the mid-ocean outcrops. ...

Beijing refuses to recognise the authority of the permanent court of arbitration (PCA) in The Hague, the UN-appointed tribunal that adjudicates in international disputes over maritime territory, in this issue. China has stated: “It will neither accept nor participate in the arbitration unilaterally initiated by the Philippines.”

In October, however, the PCA ruled that: “Both the Philippines and China are parties to the convention [on the law of the sea] and bound by its provisions on the settlement of disputes.”

It also found that China’s refusal to participate did not deprive the court of jurisdiction and that the Philippines’ decision to commence arbitration unilaterally was not an abuse of the convention’s dispute settlement procedures.

Venezuelan President Calls NSA Spying on State Oil Company “Vulgar,” Orders Official Inquiry

Venezuela will conduct a “comprehensive review of relations with the United States” and submitted a formal protest over new evidence that the National Security Agency spied on state-owned oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, the country’s president announced.

President Nicolas Maduro spoke about the latest spying revelations at an event late Wednesday night. Earlier in the day, The Intercept and teleSUR jointly published reports, based on a top-secret document provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, detailing how the intelligence agency gained large-scale access to PDVSA’s internal computer network and successfully targeted top executives for electronic surveillance. ...

After Brazilian network TV Globo revealed NSA spying on Brazil’s state-owned oil company Petrobrás in 2013, Clapper issued a statement affirming that the U.S. “collects information about economic and financial matters,” but does not use its “foreign intelligence capabilities to steal the trade secrets of foreign companies on behalf of — or give intelligence we collect to — U.S. companies to enhance their international competitiveness or increase their bottom line.” ...

In an interview with Venezuelan public television station VTV, Maduro said, “U.S. imperialism, for a long time, has wanted to sabotage our petroleum industry and defeat the Bolivarian government in order to take over Venezuela’s petroleum.”

Argentina Moves to the Right as Mauricio Macri Wins Presidential Runoff

The conservative opposition leader Mauricio Macri will be the new president of Argentina, following his narrow victory in Sunday's election over the government-backed candidate Daniel Scioli.

Macri's win marks a major shake up in Argentine politics. It puts a definitive end to 12 years of Kirchnerismo — the last two terms under outgoing President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and the first headed by her late husband Nestor Kirchner.

Sunday's poll also looks like a warning shot across the bows of several leftist Latin American governments that, like the Kirchners' administrations, are associated with a broad shift to the left that reached its height a decade ago but are now bleeding support in the face of economic downturns and corruption scandals.

Macri's win is rooted in his success in laying the blame on the Kirchner era for chronically high inflation, rising crime, confrontational domestic and international politics, and a series of corruption scandals. Scioli's campaign, meanwhile, focused on fears that the opposition victory would bring economic austerity and currency devaluation. ...

Macri used his celebration to send a direct message to Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro.

"We say to our Latin American brothers that we want good relations with all our countries. Argentina has a lot to offer the world. We hope to find an agenda of cooperation," Macri said in his victory speech. Then he hugged Lilian Tintori, the wife of imprisoned Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López who accompanied him on the stage.

"A Mayor That’s Radical": Newark Mayor Ras Baraka Reflects on His Poet Father & 1st Year in Office

Federal judge orders Sandra Bland documents to be produced

A federal judge presiding over the Sandra Bland civil lawsuit has given the City of Prairie View, which is not a defendant in the case, seven weeks to turn over records. ...

Bland's mother, Geneva Reed-Veal, filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit in August against Encinia, DPS, Waller County and county jail staffers Elsa Magnus and Oscar Prudente. ... The lawsuit could be amended to include the city as a defendant.

Prairie View's lawyer Michael Gary told U.S. District Judge David Hittner that the city wanted protection from the plaintiff's subpoena – at least until the beginning of 2016 – because local officials don't want to impede the DPS inquiry. ...

On Wednesday, Hittner ordered the city to produce the documents by Jan. 4, 2016. The seven-week grace period grants the requested temporary protection while ensuring that information eventually is handed over.

"We're going to have full disclosure in this case so we can find out where the truth is," the judge said at Tuesday's hearing.

US cops seized more property than criminals stole in 2014 – FBI

In Biggest Tax Evasion Scheme of Its Kind, Big Pharma Becomes Behemoth

Big Pharma just became Huge Pharma.

Creating the world's largest drugmaker—and paving the way for higher pharmaceutical prices—Viagra-maker Pfizer Inc. and Allergan PLC, which manufactures Botox, said Monday that they would merge in a so-called inversion deal worth up to about $155 billion.

The takeover "would be the largest inversion ever," according to the Wall Street Journal, allowing Pfizer to profit from a lower corporate tax rate in Allergan's home country of Ireland.

The LA Times reported that the deal "is likely to fuel critics' concerns that consumers would pay even more for drugs as competition declines among manufacturers, insurers and retailers."

As Gustav Ando, research director for the business information and consulting company IHS Life Sciences, told the Washington Post: "This merger isn’t meant to benefit patients, it isn't meant to innovate in any kind of way...and certainly the benefits won’t be passed on to consumers."

Insurance companies are starting to pull out. Premiums are rising. Is the ACA doomed?

Is Obamacare in trouble? This week, UnitedHealth Group, America’s largest health insurer, announced that it had sustained heavy losses in selling insurance on the Obamacare exchanges and that it might be forced to pull out of the exchanges altogether. The news from other insurers is not much better. Aetna, Anthem, and Cigna, three of UnitedHealth’s biggest competitors, will no longer offer exchange coverage in a number of counties across the country, which could be a sign that they’ll retrench even further in the future. You might have heard that insurance premiums on the exchanges are rising substantially, which isn’t exactly welcome news. But the bigger problem is arguably that insurers have been trying to hold down premium increases by narrowing the range of providers in their networks and hiking deductibles as high as they can. The result has been a spate of stories about disgruntled insurance beneficiaries, many of whom blame Obamacare for their woes. ...

So far, at least, Obamacare’s mix of carrots and sticks isn’t working terribly well. The reason insurers are having such a hard time is that the people who are buying insurance on the Obamacare exchanges are in much poorer health than insurers had anticipated, partly because healthier people are shying away from buying policies they consider much too expensive. ... The individual mandate penalty is set to increase dramatically over the next two years, which might persuade some stragglers to buy insurance policies they don’t find particularly attractive. It’s just not clear that a “buy this insurance policy—or else” message will sell politically.



the horse race



Hillary Clinton and the ISIS Mess

Hillary Clinton's speech on ISIS to the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) showed clearly what to expect in a Clinton presidency: more of the same. In her speech, Clinton doubled down on the existing, failed U.S. approach in the Middle East, the one she pursued as Secretary of State.

The CIA-led policy in the Middle East works like this. If a regime is deemed to be unfriendly to the U.S., topple it. If a competitor like the Soviet Union or Russia has a foothold in the region, try to push it out. If this means arming violent insurgencies, including Sunni jihadists, and thereby creating mayhem: so be it. And if the result is terrorist blowback around the world by the forces created by the US, then double down on bombing and regime change.

In rare cases, great presidents learn to stand up to the CIA and the rest of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. JFK became one of the greatest presidents in American history when he came to realize the awful truth that his own military and CIA advisors had contributed to the onset of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The CIA-led Bay of Pigs fiasco and other CIA blunders had provoked a terrifying response from the Soviet Union. Recognizing that the U.S. approach had contributed to bringing the world to the brink, Kennedy bravely and successfully stood up to the warmongering pushed by so many of his advisors and pursued peace, both during and after the Cuban Missile Crisis. He thereby saved the world from nuclear annihilation and halted the unchecked proliferation of nuclear arms.

Clinton's speech shows that she and her advisors are good loyalists of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. Her speech included an impressive number of tactical elements: who should do the bombing and who should be the foot soldiers. Yet all of this tactical precision is nothing more than business as usual. Would Clinton ever have the courage and vision to push back against the U.S. security establishment, as did JFK, and thereby restore global diplomacy and reverse the upward spiral of war and terror?

Sanders Defines his Social Democracy

Top TV Executives Are Meeting to Figure Out How to Deal with Donald Trump

Donald Trump, the business mogul turned reality TV star turned Republican presidential frontrunner, has pissed off pretty much every media outlet attempting to cover his campaign, by restricting reporters' access to his events and revoking press credentials. ... On Monday, executives from the five major television news networks — ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, CNN, and Fox News — plan to meet in order to discuss how to deal with what they say has been overly obstructive and hostile behavior from the Trump campaign toward journalists, reported the Washington Post.

Trump has made a habit out of refusing to grant access to certain outlets or individual reporters that he doesn't like. ... The hostility from Trump's campaign to reporters could be an attempt to limit journalists filming or covering activists who come to the events. This happened over the weekend, when a CNN reporter filmed a Black Lives Matter protester being beaten up at a Trump rally.

The activist, a 31-year old man named Mercutio Southall, told CNN that a group of white attendees hurled racial slurs, punched him, and kicked him out of the room after he and other Black Lives Matter activists attempted to disrupt a speech by Trump. The video shows a group of about six white men in a physical altercation with Southall and a bystander shouting, "Don't choke him!"

Trump Supporters Filmed Viciously Punching and Kicking Black Lives Matter Protester at Rally

A black protester was shoved out of a Trump rally in Alabama this Friday amidst kicks, punches, and screams of “All Lives Matter.” Trump can be heard at one point saying, “Get him the hell out of here.”

Not incidentally, all of the Trump supporters who participate in the protester’s ejection are white.

Jeremy Diamond, a CNN reporter, posted the video to his Twitter account.




the evening greens

And then there were three:

Northern white rhino put down at San Diego zoo leaving just three worldwide

One of only four northern white rhinos believed left in the world has died at the San Diego zoo safari park.

Nola, a 41-year-old female who has been at the park since 1989, was put down on Sunday after her health worsened, a statement from the zoo said.

She had arthritis and other ailments and was being treated for a bacterial infection linked to an abscess in her hip. ...

The remaining three northern white rhinos, all elderly, are in a closely guarded preserve in Kenya.

The subspecies has been pushed to the point of extinction by poachers, who kill the rhinos for their horns. They are in high demand in parts of Asia where some believe they have medicinal properties for treating everything from hangovers to cancer.

New Report Digs the Dirt on the Corporate Criminals Sponsoring Climate Talks

From financial giant BNP Paribas to fossil fuels company Engie, the same corporations that deny science and drive carbon pollution are now sponsoring, co-opting, and interfering with the upcoming United Nations climate talks in Paris, a new exposé reveals.

Fueling the Fire: The corporate sponsors bankrolling COP21 was published by Corporate Accountability International on Monday—a week ahead of the opening of the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) summit in Paris.

While it was no secret that the long list of corporate sponsors behind the talks raises numerous conflict-of-interest concerns, Monday's report digs up new dirt on the dealings of four major backers: fossil fuel corporations Engie and Suez Environment, global banking giant BNP Paribas, and French utility Électricité de France (EDF).

"Together, these four corporate sponsors represent direct ownership of and/or investments in: more than 46 coal-fired power plants; exploration of oil sands in Canada, hydraulic fracturing in the UK, and the Tata Mundra coal-fired power plant in Gujarat, India; more than €30 billion invested in the French coal industry; and more than 200 megatons of CO2 equivalent emissions," a report summary states.

What's more, the investigation finds, these companies have a history of "political interference in policy-making through a range of underhanded tactics; their vested interests in emissions-intensive industrial practices; their global integration with other corporations and industrial sectors that profit from climate-damaging investments; and their slick efforts to green-wash their profit motives and climate crimes through new public-relations practices of 'corporate social and environmental responsibility.'" ...

"Inviting some of the world's biggest polluters to pay for the COP is akin to hiring a fox to guard a hen house," said Patti Lynn, executive director of Corporate Accountability International, in a statement accompanying Monday's report. "We must eliminate this conflict of interest before COPs become corporate tradeshows for false market-based solutions."

Canada's Oil-Rich Province Is Bringing in a Carbon Tax

Alberta, known as home to Canada's oil sands and the province that emits the most pollution in the country, has unveiled a climate change plan built on a wide-ranging carbon tax that applies to all sectors of the economy.

The plan would limit emissions from the oil sands at 100 megatons and phase out coal fired power plants by 2030 by transitioning to renewable energy and natural gas. The carbon tax would, in turn, be phased in, starting with $20 per ton in January 2017 and $30 per ton in January 2018 — raising an estimated $3-billion a year which Premier Rachel Notley said would be invested in renewable energy. Alberta already charges a levy on large scale emitters, but the new proposal would see everyone pay for carbon, meaning that the price of gas at the pump will jump as will the cost of heating a home. The 100 megatons limit also leaves the industry room to grow. ...

Cameron Fenton, Canadian tar sands organizer with 350.org, said that while Alberta's climate plan a "big step in the right direction for a province that has spent so long on the wrong side of climate action ... we still have a long way to go to reach the kind of climate leadership that Canada needs to meet our obligation to 2ºC."
In a statement, he noted that a cap on the oil sands emissions is the kind of climate policy that was necessary a decade ago.

"Scientist tell us that at least 85% of tar sands reserved need to stay in the ground to meet Canada's climate obligations, and an emissions cap alone won't be enough to get us there," Fenton said. "This policy could mean that some approved tar sands projects will not be able to move forwards – and that's a good thing – but it also opens the door to manipulation by the fossil fuel industry, an industry that has undermined climate action in Alberta and around the globe time and time again. It's 2015, the measure of climate leadership is no longer setting a target for how much carbon you'll put in the air but legislating based on science and keeping fossil fuels in the ground." He urged "bold" leadership from Trudeau on this file, noting that Alberta "just leapfrogged" the federal government on climate ambition.


Also of Interest

Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.

Inside the Clinton Donor Network

Tragic Farce of Anti-Refugee Threats: U.S. Was No Sanctuary for Syrians in the First Place

After Paris: Hypocrisy and Mendacity Writ Large

ISIS Thrives on the Disunity of Its Enemies

Merchants of Menace: How US Arms Sales are Fueling Middle East Wars

Is hip Portland over? How the rent crisis is displacing the city's creative soul

Americans threatening to move to Canada if U.S. takes in Syrian refugees


A Little Night Music

The Coasters - Young Blood

The Coasters - Searchin'

The Coasters - Let's Go Get Stoned

The Coasters - Poison Ivy

The Coasters - Yakety Yak

The Coasters - I'm A Hog For You Baby

The Coasters - Along Came Jones

The Coasters - Love Potion Number Nine

The Coasters - Down in Mexico

The Coasters - Shoppin' For Clothes

The Coasters - Little Egypt

The Coasters - Get an ugly girl to marry you

The Coasters - That Is Rock & Roll

The Coasters - Dance

The Coasters - Bad Blood

The Coasters - The Shadow Knows

The Coasters - Framed

The Coasters - Down Home Girl

The Coasters - Idol With The Golden Head

The Coasters - Wild One


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Comments

Mark from Queens's picture

Such a good feeling to be back here, I tell ya. I'm feelin' all cozy and warm just seeing all the names of the truth-seekers, my tribe of good souls.

When did you decide to pack it in from the Neoliberal sandbox at Kos? Can't blame ya at all, but was sad to see you not around.

I've resolved to stick it out for a while, with the sole intent now to push back against these odious clowns and do my best to help Bernie to not be sideswiped by them. Kind of re-committed to putting out as many pro-Sanders diaries as possible before I become a Dad for the first time in two weeks. He's not perfect but after Occupy he's the closest I've come to believing in electoral politics again. If he gets done in by the Clinton henchmen I'm through with it.

It's an uphill slog for sure for Bernie, but there's evidence that people are just clamoring for an authentic, honest politician who is not your average DC insider, and who's speaking such clear common sense on the virtues of socialism so long overdue in the dialogue in America. The youth are gaga for him and seem engaged, but the Dem Machine has acted as a wall between him finding himself into the hearts of mainstream Dem voters through the debates. Makes me think The Fix Is In. The fucking bastards. We have to continue to fight I think.

The only hope is probably in social and economic movements, shutting shit down, dramatizing the injustice and the hijacking of government to the gullible public, and trying to form alternative communities/economies to challenge systems of power. Lots of hope in the nascent college uprisings, #BLM, athletes awakening to their enormous power (Mizzou was amazing!) Seems overwhelming when you consider the totality of it, but I think folks are way more pissed then the media tells them and more receptive to this kind of thinking. Some boycotts would be amazing. Strikes. A General strike, could it ever happen? Maybe if Hillary gets in, or any GOP bozo.

The fucking dangling carrot-stick of the purposely elusive American Dream is rotting the brains of people who should otherwise welcome socialism with open arms. Relentless RW propaganda over the years has bamboozled so many with "resentment politics."

Everyone of you here give me hope.

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"If I should ever die, God forbid, let this be my epitaph:

THE ONLY PROOF HE NEEDED
FOR THE EXISTENCE OF GOD
WAS MUSIC"

- Kurt Vonnegut

joe shikspack's picture

it's really great to see you here. i can't remember exactly when i decided to pack it in over there. it's been several weeks now.

election time over there is just too depressing. when i joined up that site had great writers and a bent towards issue activism. for the past several years, the quality of the writing has diminished considerably and the trend is toward party activism rather than issue activism.

i'm really not a party activist, when the corporate clintonistas (dlc, new democrats) took over the party, i dropped my affiliation. until bernie came along, i had virtually no issues in common with the democratic party, though many people who identify as democrats share my issues. they've just been frozen out by the warmongering corporate types.

good on you for sticking it out - and congratulations on your impending fatherhood!

the powers that be are certainly trying to put the fix in for hillary. bernie's only chance is to gather such numbers of people that they overwhelm the powers that be. he will have to do that twice. if he wins the party nomination, he can count on all the "help" from the party movers and shakers that jeremy corbyn got from labour. on the other hand, it looks like the republicans are doing their best to give bernie some help by running the most bumptiously ignorant bunch of twits that i have ever seen. so, the party's attempts to undermine him might not be as acutely felt as when they screwed with mcgovern.

anyway, welcome aboard!

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NCTim's picture

a bad name. I swear Scott Walker is the dumbest, well maybe Rand Paul, person ever to run. The fake Christians, Huckabee, Santorum, ... are the sleaziest. I am surprised Bobby Jindal didn't do better, he has dumb and fake down cold. The brashness and bravado of Christy and Trump give me shit kicking urges. I know it is wrong, but I would like to beat the crap out of Christy.

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The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

joe shikspack's picture

the release of so much pure stoopid into the atmosphere is threatening life on the planet.

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NCTim's picture

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4 users have voted.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

Azazello's picture

I'm sure some are Party hacks and have a self-interest in the status quo, but most of 'em are just television-heads. If we were conditioned by/dependent on the corporate media for our all information we'd be right there with 'em.

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NCTim's picture

Serving the corporate masters, advancing oligarchy, ignoring climate change, creating divisions among people, self serving greed and lack of values makes me draw this conclusion.

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The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

about the black activist being brutally
assaulted by white attendees at the
event, as in, did the guy who was beaten
up file charges against those who
assaulted him, especially as there is
video of not only the assaulters but
presumably also witnesses? Have the
local authorities opened an investigation?

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8 users have voted.

Only connect. - E.M. Forster

joe shikspack's picture

apparently the activist, mercutio southall, has threatened to press charges:

Trump on Birmingham protester: “Maybe he should have been roughed up”

Southall said he intends to press charges against those who assaulted him at the event, and said the police officers who escorted him out of the event at no point asked him if he wished to do so. He also said they did not offer medical attention.

"They were too busy trying to get me the f--- out of there. They weren't trying to be nothing but just getting me the f--- out of there. That was their whole concern," Southall said of the police officers who escorted him out of the event several minutes into the altercation between Southall and the half-dozen attendees.

Birmingham Police Lt. Sean Edwards, the department's public information officer, told CNN on Saturday that Southall did not require medical attention and did not ask to press charges.

Edwards said the department tried to contact him later Saturday at several numbers but could not reach him.

Edwards said his officers "didn't see" the violent confrontation take place, but said Southall is welcome to file a police report and press charges.

"I would be a little cautious with Mercutio Southall," Edwards added. "He has been an agitator from day one. Mercutio is always the agitator."

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who shoved who first, who threw the
first punch.

Otherwise, I'd sure as hell be pressing
charges, suing Trump for not providing
better security, suing the cops and the
city if they were on-duty for being crappy
security. The $$ would be in suing
Trump, of course.

Weird story. Especially with the B'ham
police dept's public information
officer's
remarks about the
protester in the final paragraph.

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4 users have voted.

Only connect. - E.M. Forster

joe shikspack's picture

to this story.

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Exciting and happy times ahead with the new baby. Some of us still wander into the orange void, but we think of this place as home. Orange can promote the hell out of Hillary, but a lot of people are packing up their tents and refusing to vote for her. This was in Tasini's last diary. I thought it was pretty remarkable too.

I was on the road for ten days in Iowa and Nevada, speaking for Bernie in small towns and cities, so I actually didn’t get to listen to Bernie’s speech on Thursday until I got back home over the weekend and caught it on C-SPAN yesterday. Though it was billed primarily as a speech focusing on domestic issues, there was one paragraph that, as far as I can tell, got very little attention.

Here it is:

Our response must begin with an understanding of past mistakes and missteps in our previous approaches to foreign policy. It begins with the acknowledgment that unilateral military action should be a last resort, not a first resort, and that ill-conceived military decisions, such as the invasion of Iraq, can wreak far-reaching devastation and destabilize entire regions for decades. It begins with the reflection that the failed policy decisions of the past – rushing to war, regime change in Iraq, or toppling Mossadegh in Iran in 1953, or Guatemalan President Árbenz in 1954, Brazilian President Goulart in 1964, Chilean President Allende in 1973. These are the sorts of policies do not work, do not make us safer, and must not be repeated.

This was astonishing. A major presidential candidate who was willing publicly to admit, and understand, that the U.S. government plots, executed principally by the CIA, to overthrow democratically elected leaders were failures. I can’t imagine how many people at the CIA, past and present, had strokes reading those words.

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"Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

Pluto's Republic's picture

…at least two news picks. Sure, I smile a lot when reading some of the picks, but these were laughter inducing:

US special forces to arrive in Syria 'very soon' as Assad hails Russian airstrikes

Dozens of US special operations troops will arrive in Syria “very soon” as promised by president Barack Obama’s administration, a senior official has said. The troops will help organise local forces battling the self-proclaimed Islamic State in northern Syria….

That whole area has been wall-to-wall CIA-hired "military contractors" since Hillary and Chris Stevens started running gun caches from Libya to Syria, back in 2011. I guess we'll know when the "Special" forces arrive because they'll be wearing those green condom-looking beanies on their heads. And they won't be carrying enough cash to get anyone to talk to them.

And, this one had a thigh-slapper built in:

Americans threatening to move to Canada if U.S. takes in Syrian refugees

Many Americans are threatening to move to Canada if the U.S. allows Syrian refugees into the country.

Disgruntled [wingnut] Americans voiced their threats of heading north of the border on social media this week as the U.S. debates whether to open its doors to those fleeing the Syrian crisis.

U.S. President Barack Obama pledged to take in about 10,000 Syrian refugees in 2016, while Canada has pledged to take in 25,000 by January 1, 2016.

I've been mostly feeling bad for the Republicans and their obvious problem with "deep-stupid." But this story brought back some of the mirth.

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The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
Pluto's Republic's picture

...were oriceless, as well:

Kristina Middleton
Fellow Canadians, we have a real problem now. Ignorant and uninformed racists have threatened to invade our borders. They could take jobs that could be given to refuge's. Also how many of them are terrorists ? Don't forget the Oklahoma bombings or temple bombings, so many hate crimes in the states, let alone there crime rates. These are a violent and dangerous people and it is sad that they have to live in those conditions but do we want them here? Infecting our homes and lives. Say no to American illegals.

Diane Barakat-Mendez
Sorry, we're not accepting US refugees: They may be members of or sympathizers with the KKK. Or worse: carry guns and shoot our innocent children at school! There is no place for that in our society. The risk is too high. Close the borders.

Andy Szabo
I feel embarrassed for the Americans not jumping to help the people their government indirectly displaced. Accepting only 10,000 refugees is pathetic.

Dave McKerrell
Fine with me. But they should have to prove they are not Republicans. Most of them can't find Canada on a map.

Matt Rtw
Swear to God, if we start taking in these US refugees, I'm moving to Syria.

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The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
NCTim's picture

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The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

joe shikspack's picture

Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb
No joie de vivre, just endless hours of tedium
With a negative IQ,
You'll be lonely, sad, and blue
Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb

Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb
You wait for years but inspiration never comes
Thoughts you don't have remain unheard
'Cause you can not find the words
Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb

Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb
Between your ears a dark and silent vac-u-um
If there's a void behind your face,
Why not rent out the vacant space
Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb

Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb
Why not just lay back and smoke a bowl of opium
If being stupid is your fate,
Well just relax 'cause it's too late
Life is hard, but life is hardest when you're dumb

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mimi's picture

and not so funny song. Heh, first time I don't like your song selection, Joe. Nea
Well, there is a first for everything. Now I listen to your good song selection to forget about this one.

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

NCTim's picture

They have to laugh or they would cry. Living in Texas is hard for normal people.

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The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

mimi's picture

I am one of the dumb ones. I don't understand nothin' . Stupid world.

I listen now, it's ok. Outta here.

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

snoopydawg's picture

I knew that the U.S. wasn't actually fighting Isis. There have been photos of those convoys for over a year yet no one thought to bomb them? Obama's excuse for not bombing them before was because he was worried about civilian casualties. Yeah sure. I guess he wasn't concerned about the other couple of thousands he's killed in other countries he's using drones on.
The reason Hillary wants a no fly zone is to protect the terrorists groups that we are funding and arming to help over throw Assad. And the reason he needs to go is because another corporation want to put in pipelines that Russia has had for decades.
And that was the reason for the coup in Ukraine. To stop Russia from being the only country that supplies natural gas to Europe.

That's scary that the people in France have accepted their liberties being taken away. I saw that coming. It's just like when congress passed both the patriot act and the part of the NDAA where people can be arrested and never have access to a lawyer.

Here is an interesting article about Hillary and the U.S. doing all they can to protect Israel from being charged with war crimes.
http://www.salon.com/2015/11/19/deferring_justice_clinton_emails_show_ho...

Dear Dog, I don't want her anywhere near the White House
And if anyone is interested in seeing how the Clinton foundation is a money laundering scam, do a Google search for Clinton foundation scams.
She made an agreement with Obama to not take foreign donations from countries that the U.S. has sold weapons to.
Now they are going back 4-5 years of taxes to see how many laws they broke.
One article I read that if the FOJ did its job, the Clintons would go to jail for years. And that includes Chelsea.
Hillary is corrupt to the core. Yet her supporters say that anything bad said about her are just right wing talking points.

Congrats Mark on becoming a father, and welcome to the sanity site.

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Now I do like that. Maybe a new name
to replace the old one?

BTW, is anyone keeping track of
suggested new names to go with next
year's makeover?

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6 users have voted.

Only connect. - E.M. Forster

NCTim's picture

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3 users have voted.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

joe shikspack's picture

whew, time to mellow out...

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NCTim's picture

Check out this wanker

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3 users have voted.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

joe shikspack's picture

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mimi's picture

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

snoopydawg's picture

My mom played them on Saturday mornings when we were cleaning the house.
What a voice! Thanks for the memories.

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3 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

to fill this out for a new name:

Free Range _____

EG: Free Range Politics, Free Range Thought, Free Range Cognition, Free Range Left, something along those lines. Any cool ideas to finish it?

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mimi's picture

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

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5 users have voted.

Only connect. - E.M. Forster

joe shikspack's picture

it's been pretty obvious for a while that obama cares little about the lives of collateral damage civilians. it's also been quite obvious that obama has little interest in fighting isis in syria, even though they have made some complications in iraq.

it's sad that the people of france have been so accommodating of the police state being pressed upon them, the same thing appears to be happening in belgium as well. i would imagine that all of the "free world" will soon be frightened into a similar compliance.

the clintonator appears to be ready, willing and able to continue the upward spiraling cycle of fear and violence.

it's a mean old world.

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mimi's picture

Siegfried Ramler and the Nuremberg trials. Your highlighted paragraph in your excerpt is so important and presents one of the main arguments, why one might be allowed or is obliged to intervene in other countries atrocities, when they happen. So true:

When checks on governmental power and control do not exist, when a dictatorship disregards and nullifies existing laws, when the achievement of a desired end for a nation justifies any means to obtain it, when persecution of segments of a population becomes government policy, and when the world community fails to react to crimes being committed by a dictatorship, the result leads to the abyss into which Germany descended during the Nazi period. In this sense the Nuremberg legacy, as a cornerstone of international law, takes on a universal significance beyond the role of Germany during the Hitler regime.

But then I was remembered, that interventions to "protect civilians from their own dictators' atrocities" is not always the right thing to do or does result in different outcomes than intended and don't result in protection of the civilians. I wonder how one finds a balance between necessary interventions to really stop and prevent civilians from being slaughtered in genocides and interventions that use that argument as an excuse for an intervention which actually has other intentions and root causes. Sigh. Not easy to know. How many military interventions to stop a genocide were actually successful in the last 50 years?

OT, I found a couple of articles today amusing, especially the one where Americans threaten to emigrate to Canada, when "evil Syrian refugees will do them harmful thingies when they can enter the US". Oh boy, people go nuts all over the US and Europe with their "refugee fears".

Then I heard this morning this clip on France24 and I found it helpful, because it explained so clearly what kind of priorities Russia, Iran and Turkey have to pretend to fight ISIS and may pretend to build a coalition, but all for different reasons. I had not grasped that before. It think this is all confusing and hard to follow.
Iran: Putin meets ayatollah Khamenei for talks on Syria, "determined to defend Assad's regime" Summarized it well as of TC 6:30, but I thought the explanations by Borzou Daragahi from BuzzFeed in that interview were pretty good.

Thanks for the list and good night.

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

joe shikspack's picture

the sad thing is that the powerful nations do not engage in actions to protect civilians in troubled countries for altruistic reasons. it's all about "interests" and chessboards. it has probably always been that way.

that said, the nuremberg trials created a legacy of international law that perhaps the international community can aspire to along with the united nations charter. perhaps it is up to the peoples of the world to do their best to restrain their own governments from bad actions.

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lotlizard's picture

Upper limit on refugees called for (original in German)

In line with CSU demands, the president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany Josef Schuster called on the German government to limit the number of refugees Germany accepts. That's necessary, he says, to prevent anti-Semitism from gaining.

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joe shikspack's picture

wow, it looks like every overwrought identity group has an angle on this thing.

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lotlizard's picture

Getting a little weekly dose of Hawaii by recording a half-hour Hawaiian music show off the internet stream of Radio Tsukuba, the community radio station of Tsukuba city in Japan.

The station break is always on the full hour, in this booming American English male announcer voice: "You're listening to Radio Tsukuba — eighty-four point two megahertz on your radio dial — jay oh zee zee three bee oh eff em — [jazz cadence]").

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mimi's picture

... so, now in Germany we are supposed to have two potential groups to act out anti-semitic feelings? The right-wing Neo-Nazis and the Syrian refugees? Wow. And then they say that not only the anti-semitic feelings might be "uncontainable", but other cultural values, like equality rights for women and homosexuals as well? The different value systems were not attached to the islamists' different value system, but more generally to the fact that the origin of refugees is mostly from the "arabic areas"?

So, Germany is in the tweezers again. Sigh. What a kabuki theater to discuss "Obergrenzen (Upper limits)" for refugees in comparison to "Kontingente (contingents)" for refugees. How stupid the change of wording to attempt to deceive or distract people from the fact that both mean the same, arghh.

Too sad a development again.

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

lotlizard's picture

salaamschalom.de (note that there is a "c" in "schalom")
A student of Jewish theology and member of the organization with the title "coordinator" wrote a scathing editorial.

Racism in the Central Council of Jews (original in German)

The president of the Central Council of Jews has called for an upper limit on the number of refugees accepted.
The aftertaste that leaves is very bitter.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Anti-Syrian Muslim Refugee Rhetoric Mirrors Calls to Reject Jews During Nazi Era

During the 1930s and early 1940s, the United States resisted accepting large numbers of Jewish refugees escaping the Nazi terror sweeping Europe, in large part because of fearmongering by a small but vocal crowd.

They claimed that the Jewish refugees were communist or anarchist infiltrators intent on spreading revolution; that refugees were part of a global Jewish-capitalist conspiracy to take control of the United States from the inside; that the refugees were either Nazis in disguise or under the influence of Nazi agents sent to commit acts of sabotage; and that Jewish refugees were out to steal American jobs.

::

From talk radio to the blogosphere to leading American politicians, anti-Syrian rhetoric claims that refugees are simply ISIS infiltrators; that migrants are Muslim invaders seeking to establish a “global caliphate” and impose Sharia law on America; and that Syrian refugees are lying about escaping violence and are focused instead on abusing the American welfare system.

And in a rehash of history, politicians are arguing that only Christian, not Muslim, refugees from Syria should be welcomed.

“I have heard on good authority that an Executive order has given immigration authorities permission to let down the usual bars in favor of the so-called Jewish refugees from Germany,” declared Julia Cantacuzene, a Republican activist in New York, according to a front page New York Times article that ran on May 18, 1938…. She claimed that the same would happen here: “Under these lax regulations, many Communists are coming to this country to join the ranks of those who hate our institutions and want to over throw them.”

The State Department played a key role in fanning fears. Julian Harrington, the head of the visa division, argued that Germany had coerced refugees to spy for the Nazis. Both the Washington Post and New York Times promoted the accusation.

Legislators reacted with a series of anti-immigrant and anti-refugee legislation…. One such proposal, from Rep. Stephen Pace, a Georgia Democrat, demanded that “every Alien in the United States shall be forthwith deported.”

Today, American voices just as prominent call for Syrian refugees to be settled elsewhere — anywhere but here — using a similar strategy to the one that anti-Semites used to reject Jewish refugees.

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The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
mimi's picture

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6 users have voted.

TTTT (too tired to talk)

enhydra lutris's picture

Insurance crooks and the ACA:
It's been years since I looked closely into some of these but they've traditionally lost money or made very little from their insurance business, and made almost all or all their bread from investments.

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6 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

Operation Northwoods was a proposed operation against the Cuban government, that originated within the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) of the United States government in 1962.The proposals called for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) or other US government operatives to commit acts of terrorism against American civilians and military targets, blaming it on the Cuban government, and using it to justify a war against Cuba. The proposals were rejected by the Kennedy[2]

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods

What could they possibly be up to now - Darth Cheney, his fellow travellers, and all their protégés?

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5 users have voted.

Only connect. - E.M. Forster

mimi's picture

Swedish asylum policy fuels support for far-right nationalist party
I understand why Chris Hedges despairs:
States of Terror

This will not end well. The massive violence we employ throughout the Middle East will never achieve its goals. State terror will not defeat individual acts of terror. More and more innocents will be sacrificed, here and abroad, in a furious and futile campaign. Rage and collective humiliation will mount. As we continue to fail to blunt attacks against us, we will become more aggressive and more lethal. Internal enemies—especially Muslims—will be demonized, endure hate crimes and be hunted down. The most tepid forms of criticism and dissent will be criminalized.

We are hostages, like Israel, to an accelerating death spiral. Only when we are exhausted and depleted, when the numbers of dead and maimed overwhelm us, will this lust for blood end. By then the world around us will be unrecognizable and, I fear, irredeemable.

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TTTT (too tired to talk)

lotlizard's picture

by the beloved Dutch chansonnier Ramses Shaffy (1933–2009) titled Zing, vecht, huil, bid, lach, werk en bewonder.

German: "singe, kämpfe, weine, bete, lache, arbeite, bewundere"
English: "sing, fight, cry, pray, laugh, work, gaze in wonder"

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

piece, and for today's excellent roundup.

I'm "madder than an old wet hen"--having just finished 'open enrollment' for 2016.

We've just taken another major haircut. More later about our skyrocketing health care premiums, and OOP costs. Heck, one of our optional life insurance premiums--meaning not the company furnished base life coverage, but the additional coverage--almost doubled.

Jeeeeeezzzzzz!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bye

More later.

Have a nice morning, Everyone!

Mollie


"Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare."--Japanese Proverb
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Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

lotlizard's picture

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mimi's picture

asks "Wollt Ihr den totalen Krieg?"

Too much...

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TTTT (too tired to talk)