Wednesday, May 31, 2006

VENEZUELA SPENDING BILLIONS ON DEFENSE



OMFG!! BILLIONS!!

So says FABIOLA SANCHEZ, an ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER

Billions?
Uh, well, $2.7 billion.

I see. What's everybody else spending?

US: $500.0 billion
Columbia: $ 6.3 billion
Mexico: $ 6.1 billion

Nevermind.

INTERVIEW WITH GUSTAVO ESTEVA



The Society of the Different

Part 1: The Center of the World

Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico

...the logic of interest in the government and the logic of interest among the people never coincide.

With some friends I started to create an autonomous niche in the so-called civil society where I have been working since then.

Autonomy, Decentralism, “Gestion”

“Autonomy”, you know the whole story today of autonomy. This was in 1980, that means in that time we had started to accompany the struggle for autonomy with the people in the villages.

“Decentralism” is the opposite to decentralization. “We don’t want to have any center. We are the center of the world.” Everyone is the center of the world. Every community is it’s own center. We were supporting that kind of attitude.

And “gestion”, gestión cannot be translated to English. It is something like self-management. Butyou can have one organization that is protecting against the impact of the bureaucracy on the people. The people need to do something with the bureaucrats

...in 1985 with the big things of the earthquake in Mexico City, that is now considered the moment in which the expression “civil society” was born in Mexico to express an idea of autonomy by the people, in the hands of the people.

...“Non-violence is for the strong,” said Gandhi. “It would be criminal if I preach non-violence to a mouse on the point of being devoured by a cat. If I am preaching non-violence to the Hindu it is because I don’t see why 300 million people are afraid of 150,000 British. Because they are strong, they should use non-violence.”

The first Zapatistas used violence as the last resource.

But then they became the strong very soon because of our support. When we had millions of people in the streets and great massive support, even international support, immediately they became the strong and they became the champions of non-violence. This is one of the most paradoxical elements of the Zapatistas. They are an army that is the champion of non-violence in Mexico.

...democracy is still associated with the notion of power - those governing and those governed

What the Zapatistas and we are saying is that we are affirming our dignity, affirming who we are and taking control of our lives. It is not a different system of power. We are not trying to manipulate or control anyone.

Radical democracy also implies the transition from the language of rights to the language of freedom. If we accept the very idea of right then we need to give all the power, the resources, to the state, to any kind of central structure that will provide the things to which we have the right to

A community is, here in Oaxaca, in any village, even the village where I live, it is a group of people linked by obligation, by mutual obligations, not by rights.

One final element that is very much connected with the Zapatistas is that we are trying to go from tolerance to hospitality. The dictionary says that “tolerance” is “to suffer with patience” and sometimes the people that tolerate lose their patience

We are saying that we are talking about hospitality that you accept profoundly that he has the same right that you have to be here on the planet.

Gandhi was continually showing that the people themselves, by themselves, can exist and do something, whose main concern in his daily life for fifty years was the daily chores, the daily problems of living. In the film, they cut this moment in which Nehru and Patel are with Gandhi, at a very critical moment for very important decisions about independence, and Gandhi interrupts the conversation saying, “Please excuse me for a moment I need to go and milk my goat.”

I think the Sexta, the Otra Campaña, is just the confirmation of this kind of concern: not the big abstract words but the real concerns of the people.

I cannot share with you the kind of emotion that I perceive with the dry toilet when the people disconnect their stomach from any centralized bureaucracy. If you have a flush toilet you are fully dependent on a private or public bureaucracy that is taking your own shit out of your house. When you have a dry toilet you are really autonomous and you are responsible for disposing of your own shit, and, the most important point, for transforming your own shit into something positive, into a magnificent compost.

Gandhi is perhaps the only political leader really concerned with real life concerns. This is for me a very effective symbol of a new kind of politics.

(What of the) Salt March as autonomous methods of being or organizing? It was used as a method of organizing but it was also “Let’s just do what we need to do without the British, as far as making our own clothing and making our own salt”?

We don’t need to pay the tax. “There is no need for us to accept that and this government is absolutely impotent. They can do nothing if all of us do this.”

The caracol is our salt.
It is saying “No” to the government. They have been governing themselves in their own way with magnificent organization and showing that a people can govern themselves without a center.

Hope is the very essence of popular movements: people mobilize only when they have hope. The Zapatistas opened hope and stimulated imagination. If you eliminate this structure and you start thinking, then you discover that there are a lot of things that you can do by yourselves.

“Be the change you wish for the world”, instead of preaching to everyone what to do. You have people in the left, with a fundamental contradiction between their discourse and their practice. They can be very, very radical and live like a bourgeois


Tuesday, May 30, 2006

DEMOCRATS / REPUBLICANS -- THEY ARE ALL WAITERS IN THE SAME RESTAURANT SERVING THE SAME MEAL

Reclaiming the Democratic Agenda
By Jackson Diehl, The Washington Post

Though you'd never know it from surfing the Internet, there exists in the Democratic Party a substantial body of politicians and policymakers who believe the U.S. mission in Iraq must be sustained until it succeeds; who want to intensify American attempts to spread democracy in the greater Middle East; and who think that the Army needs to be expanded to fight a long war against Islamic extremism. More...
THE DEMOCRATIC LEADERSHIP COUNCIL (DLC)

From left to right: U.S. Sen. Tom Carper is vice chair of the DLC; U.S. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton is chair of the DLC's American Dream Initiative; Al From is founder and CEO of the DLC; Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack is chair of the DLC; (Not pictured: Bruce Reed is DLC president; Pennsylvania State Representative Jennifer Mann is chair of the DLC's State Legislative Advisory Board (SLAB); Columbus (OH) Mayor Michael Coleman is chair of the DLC's Local Elected Officials Network(LEON).)

Running for President as "The War Goddess". I can do the war better, for the same people, for the same reasons.

Monday, May 29, 2006

HADITHA MASSACRE



Here is a youtube video of the young iraqi Girl who tells of US Attack in Haditha who killed her father and grandparents.

How many other Hadithas are there

Sunday, May 28, 2006

THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE TELEVIZED



The Revolution will not be televised is a documentary about the US sponsored coup in Venezuela against elected president Hugo Chavez in 2002.

Click here to watch the movie in it's entirety - one hour, 14 minutes.

Some demo-
cracies are more equal than other demo-
cracies.

The best democracies are the ones that the economic elites and the corporate media have rigged.

Sometimes, a good documentary is all about being in the right place at the right time. It does not get much better for Kim Bartley and Donnacha O'Briain, who, in late 2001 began filming a documentary about Hugo Chavez, the controversial President of Venezuela. As they worked on their documentary, events in Venezuela reached a fever pitch and the duo was able to capture on film a coup from the perspective of the Chavez government. The footage is remarkable, especially given that actual events were so clouded by propaganda on both sides. What is clear is that this was a coup orchestrated with

CANDIDATE GARCIA AHEAD IN THE PERUVIAN POLLS. RUNS AGAINST HUGO CHAVEZ


In Peru, Chavez’s outspoken support for Ollanta Humala, an ultra-nationalist former army officer, appears to have backfired. Humala’s moderate leftist opponent Alan Garcia, the former president, has capitalised on irritation with Chavez’s “interference” to move 12 points ahead in the latest opinion poll before next Sunday’s presidential vote.

Garcia has made no secret of his disdain for Chavez, whom he has accused of “petro-imperialism” — using Venezuela’s oil wealth to wield undue influence over poorer countries.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

I KNEW HARRY S TRUMAN --- --- AND YOU, SIR, ARE NO HARRY S TRUMAN


WEST POINT, N.Y., May 27 — President Bush implicitly compared himself to Harry S. Truman in a commencement address at the United States Military Academy on Saturday, saying Truman acted boldly against the "fanatic faith" of cold war communism in the same way Mr. Bush's administration has responded to the threat of terrorism since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

ZAPATISTAS DEFEAT MEXICAN CORPORATE MEDIA AND THE ABILITY OF DICK MORRIS TO CONJURE UP THE 'FEAR VOTE'



The atrocities of May 3 and 4 in San Salvador Atenco and Texcoco (and on the way to, and inside, the prisons of the state of Mexico) have ratcheted up the velocity of a movement, Zapatista - The Other Campaign

The Mexican State of Vicente Fox and his foreign sponsors (and here) attacked a concentration of Other Campaign adherents with every weapon and power in their hands. Three weeks later, they have failed:

The forces “from below and to the left” have won the battle over defining the story in what has been an apocalyptic media war (a Netwar, or Cyberwar, say the Pentagon analysts over at the Rand Corporation that study things “from above and to the right”).

The corporate media — the upper class’ most powerful weapon in the “class struggle” that is waged daily from above — deployed all the arms at their disposal.

From the desks of the media bosses they wrote a script and repeated it all day and night.

But the forces from above made the same mistake they have made so many times before: they lied. They claimed that it had been a protestor’s firecracker that killed a 14-year-old boy.

Atenco — a single word — now stands, in public opinion, for the return of Mexico’s authoritarian state, after almost three weeks of netwar, Atenco stands, in the hearts and minds of public opinion, for rape.

The horizontal flow of suppressed information has not been successfully blockaded, despite all the best efforts of those above who fancy themselves as controlling it.

The true facts regarding Atenco have sprung up from a thousand corners, and flown toward various epicenters of resistance, and sent it hurtling throughout Mexico and, in many languages, across the world

Forcing even many Commercial Media to begin to report what previously had been hushed.

The system lost another netwar, embolden and strengthen the Zapatista Other Campaign and related movements from below, turning tables on the very motives — conjuring “the fear vote” — that the repressive State had for unleashing the Dirty War of the 21st Century in Atenco.

The Zapatista Other Campaign took steps from the beginning of the Other Campaign to ensure the horizontal flow of key information.

When the Other Campaign began to take form last summer, another communications path had to be constructed for the Other Campaign.

The Other Campaign, finally, comes to take the corporate media machine — all that state-of-the art equipment, privileged access to the public airwaves, distribution systems; even their helicopters — back into public hands.

The first tasks of the Other Campaign was to open new channels of communication between the EZLN and others, and to create new flows of information and communication between all the different sectors of adherents

The Zapatistas began with the most historically difficult and divided sectors first: the “political organizations of the left” and brings them around the same table

The absolute rejection of the institutional political parties (those that, by law, can field candidates) and its resistance to any efforts, specifically, by the center-left PRD (Democratic Revolution Party) to co-opt or make electoral hay of La Otra.

Marcos and the Zapatistas came to two other conclusions that,

First, they showed zero enthusiasm for proposals that an “alternative candidacy” be mounted for president

also rejected many proposals to promote voter abstention

Looking, instead, below, to the people who, Marcos says, will topple any government that protects an illegitimate economic system.

The pushing of political parties to the sidelines gave Marcos and the Zapatistas an unfettered path to converse

But what Marcos has achieved is he’s gotten them all to walk together on a common path. A platform that is essentially anarcho-indigenist. He convinced them to embrace a useful heresy, and one that, ironically, is in their self-interest if they are serious about bringing down capitalism

And this new kind of unity through diversity played an important role during the past three weeks in turning the Atenco story around.

From this was constructed a massive, up-to-date, national email list that showed its real muscle in the days after the Atenco atrocity.

We have to learn to name our prisoners and name the repressions against us. And this is exactly what occurred this month when Other Campaign adherents were arrested, beaten, raped and imprisoned during the conflicts in Atenco and Texcoco.

The frequent infusions of such “one for all, all for one” talk have been an effort to remove historic vices of bureaucracy and exclusion

This challenge - insistence on absolute mutual respect and the creation of national, horizontal, communications systems,

no longer having to look upwards instead, look to each other, below and to the left.

Value was placed on each adherent — organization or individual — for taking autonomous initiative

By May of 2006, in the aftermath of Atenco, the results can be seen

The communication between the sectors is instant: people from diverse sectors know each other, are familiar with each other, exchange cell phone calls and text messages. Important information spreads like lightning in many directions all at once. It facilitates a kind of instant “top sight” for communicators of different tendencies and organizations.

They have a weblog. It posts audio and photos from Other Campaign events. It has links to some of the very busy Other Media sites, to videos that adherents and others post to YouTube, to photos that anybody can publish on Flickr, to Technorati’s search engine on the latest mention of La Otra Campaña by any weblog in Spanish. And so the Other Campaign communications system has become a multi-headed monster in the eyes of those who would try to silence and censor it: a nightmare for those who seek to control information flow.

Texcoco and Atenco, the networks jumped into action. In a little more than two weeks, they changed the focus of the story from what the mass media and State wanted it to be and brought public opinion to the story’s authentic essence: the atrocities committed by a repressive regime, and the human face of those who that State victimized and raped.

Within the horizontal networks, there are all kinds of organizations and individuals. mobile units war machines outside the State, termed Deleuze and Guattari — they move, many sets of feet, eyes, ears and tongues, as a unit, with speed and precision. They have, many of them, achieved “top sight.”

On the morning of May 4, in Atenco, the Mexican State set out to dismember the Other Campaign networks.And the State failed

These are excerpts from an article which can be found and read here.

Friday, May 26, 2006

BUSH MARRIAGE BREAKUP


BUSH MARRIAGE BREAKUP!

EXCLUSIVE!

SEPARATE LIVES IN THE WHITE HOUSE

  • Nasty fights
  • Booze problems
  • Laura urges counseling

On Pages 20 and 21, the Globe announces "Bush and Laura's 29-year marriage FALLS APART," adding: "They barely talk to each other," "[t]hey argue when they do speak," and "[s]he's afraid he'll hit the bottle." Quotes in the article attributed to "a longtime friend" include the assertion that "[w]hen the cameras aren't on, they have nothing to do with one another," and that "[f]or all practical purposes, they've broken up." The "family friend" continues: "After their last fight over booze, they just stopped talking -- period." The Globe's report that Laura Bush is concerned that President Bush may "hit the bottle" is reminiscent of a September 21, 2005, National Enquirer article about "Bush's booze crisis," which reported: "Faced with the biggest crisis of his political life, President Bush has hit the bottle again."

IRAN'S NUCLEAR ENERGY PROGRAM


Thursday, May 25, 2006

STRATEGY SHIFT IN PRESS CONFERANCE FROM ---NO MISTAKES MADE, STAY THE COURSE, TO -- MISTAKES WERE MADE, STAY THE COURSE



Bush, Blair Concede Missteps on Iraq

But Leaders Say War Was Justified

FIRST, THE BAD NEWS

  • series of errors have made the conflict more difficult and more damaging to the U.S. image abroad,
  • inappropriate "tough talk" -- such as saying "bring 'em on" in reference to insurgents -- that he said "sent the wrong signal to people."
  • the Abu Ghraib prison scandal, in which guards photographed themselves sexually tormenting Iraqi prisoners, spawning revulsion worldwide.
  • should have recognized that the fall of president Saddam Hussein would not "be the rise of a democratic Iraq, that it was going to be a more difficult process"
  • Iraq war has, you know, created a sense of consternation here in America,"
  • Blair Cited the process of "de-Baathification" fueled the insurgency because it threw tens of thousands of Iraqis out of work and left an administrative vacuum,
  • (The de-Baathification program was issued as Coalition Provisional Authority Order Number 1 on May 16, 2003, by L. Paul Bremer III, the chief of the U.S. occupation in 2003-2004)
  • (The prime minister's examples appeared to be a direct rebuke of both the Pentagon's insistence that a detailed "nation-building" plan was unnecessary before the invasion and the push by key members of Bush's administration for broad de-Baathification.)

BUT THINGS ARE REALLY GOING GOOD

  • repeatedly emphasized that Iraq is finally turning a corner and that,
  • enough progress has been made that other nations should support the nascent Iraqi government.
  • whatever their other misjudgments, the decision to attack Iraq remains justified.
  • the sacrifice is worth it and it's necessary.
  • Iraq now has a permanent government, other nations and international organizations -- such as the United Nations -- now have an obligation to step forward.
  • it is also the duty of the whole of the international community, to get behind this government and support it

FINALLY, THE EXXON MOBIL / CHEVRON CLAUSE
  • Bush added, saying said U.S. troops would not leave the country until Iraq is able to sustain, defend and govern itself.
MOVE ALONG FOLKS, NOTHING TO SEE HERE


1975--2000 -- THE GOLDEN AGE OF IMPERIAL PILLAGE IN LATIN AMERICA



  • Massive transfers of property, wealth, profits, interest and royalty payments flowed from Latin America to the US and the EU.
  • Lucrative public enterprises valued at more than $350 billion dollars were privatized without constitutional niceties and ended up in the hands of multi-national corporations and banks.
  • Congress, the electorate, and national auditors were ignored.
  • Kleptocratic electoral regimes hailed in political circles and the mass media as the era of “Democracy and Free Markets”.
  • The US/EU MNCs and Banks’ unmitigated plunder between 1975 and 2005 was worth over $950 billion dollars.
  • Plunder without development inevitably led to a general socio-economic crisis and near collapse of the imperial-centered model of capitalist accumulation
  • Beginning in the early 1990’s massive extra-parliamentary socio-political movements emerged throughout most of Latin America and were accompanied by large-scale popular uprisings,
  • deposing ten incumbent neo-liberal client “Presidents” of the US/EU:

This is the same "democracy and freedom" that the Neoconservatives and the Bush cabel have planned for Iraq.

Read here for the rest of the story

BUSH APPOINTS NEO-CONSERVATIVE KARL ZINMEISTER AS TOP DOMESTIC POLICY ADVISOR


Author Karl Zinsmeister from the neo-conservative American Enterprise Institute was appointed by Bush to be his top domestic policy adviser, a post that has been vacant since February, when Claude A. Allen stepped down after being charged with stealing more than $5,000 in a phony refund scheme.

  • At AEI he focused on examining cultural issues, as well as social and economic trends
  • His columns included pieces praising Wal-Mart's efficiency
  • He extols the role of religion in forming the glue that bonds communities.
  • written three books defending the war in Iraq,
  • a nation he has visited four times as an embedded journalist.
  • Zinsmeister wrote in his column last June. "With the exception of periodic flare-ups in isolated corners, our struggle in Iraq as warfare is over,"
  • But there is now no chance whatever of the U.S. losing this critical guerrilla war."

Per Source Watch, American Enterprise Institute is a center base for many neoconservatives. Between 1985 and 2001, AEI received $29,653,933 from John M. Olin Foundation and The Scaife Foundations among many others

More details here



JOHN McCAIN IN A NUTSHELL FROM A PROFESSOR AT NEW SCHOOL - JAN CLAUSEN



  • his career-long disrespect for women's reproductive rights
  • his stubborn opposition to equal protection under the law for lesbians and gay men
  • his advocacy of pre-emptive war even before 9/11
  • cozying up to Jerry Falwell by speaking at Liberty University
  • used his engagement at the New School to deflect criticism of the Liberty appearance as he revved up his bid for the Republican presidential nomination
  • That he'd recently been singing George W. Bush's praises despite Bush's evisceration of the anti-torture measure he'd sponsored
  • Reputation as "maverick" and "moderate" belies his actual record as an unequivocal reactionary on crucial domestic and foreign policy matters
  • promotes a violent nationalism that obscure the ugly reality of an invasion based on lies, greed, and disregard for the basic humanity of ordinary Iraqis



Sunday, May 21, 2006


BATTLES LINES BEING DRAWN -- DOBSON TO REPUBLICANS -- DONT GO SAME SEX ON ME -- YOU WILL BE PUNISHED

(manufactuing a 'values' issue)

Same-sex marriage battle lines being drawn

.....But critics dismiss the scheduled vote as an election-year ploy simply designed to rally social conservatives during the run-up to the November elections.

"They have a very fractured base of people in their party who are not rallying around this as they were in 2004," said Brad Luna (yah think so, Brad?, just keep smiling), spokesman for the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign. "I think the American people see this for what it is. They see this as a political ploy. They have issues very critical to their daily lives that this Congress has decided to toss aside (in order to) bring up a discriminatory amendment to the constitution. That will backfire."

...."It’s not surprising that some Republican leaders want to distract Americans from crises that really threaten our families and values – unfair tax policies and a runaway deficit, a culture of corruption and lack of accountability for lawbreaking at the highest levels of our government, the neglect of children and families displaced by Hurricane Katrina, and more," Mincberg said. "But writing discrimination into our sacred charter of freedom for short-term political gain shows a basic lack of decency."

and,

http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/05/15/news/faith.php

...Dobson made the same point more personally in a series of private meetings with top Republicans, according to people present for or briefed on the meetings.

Among those he met with were Karl Rove, the president's top political adviser; Bill Frist of Tennessee, the majority leader in the Senate; Representative J. Dennis Hastert of Illinois, the speaker of the House; and Representative John Boehner of Ohio, the House majority leader

(manufacturing a 'values' issue)

SOLAMENTE INGLES, POR FAVOR --- --- --- --- (the 'other' base)

(manufactuing a 'values' issue)

"...Taking a look at language, for example, the Pew study found that the children of Hispanic immigrants learn English quickly. In fact, by the second generation, slightly less than half of Latinos are bilingual, another 46 percent favor English, and less than one in 10 still cling to Spanish only."

See also here,

http://www.prospect.org/print/V8/33/nunberg-g.html

"What is more, recent immigrants are in fact learning English at a faster rate than any earlier generations of immigrants did—and by all the evidence, with at least as much enthusiasm. Whatever "multiculturalism" may mean to its proponents, it most assuredly does not involve a rejection of English as the national lingua franca."

(manufacturing a 'values' issue"

KARL ROVE & THE GHOST OF LEE ATWATER MOBILIZE THE 'BASE' ONE MORE TIME



Senate Votes English as 'National Language'

After an emotional debate fraught with symbolism, the Senate yesterday voted to make English the "national language" of the United States.....without altering current laws that require some government documents and services be provided in other languages.