Monthly Archives: November, 2003

An Invitation to Violence

Commentary regarding the police violence in the recent
FTAA protests in Miami, and the federal role in it.

Disturbing photos from Miami

Also see: prior info on Miami events, post 1 and post 2, and

Heavy-handed police and propaganda tactics brought Baghdad to Miami with a thread that has more links and a discussion about the unsettling trend to embedding reporters.

The political and the personal

David Neiwert of Orcinus on growing up conservative, missed invitations, and when politics becomes personal:

It is hardly different in nature from the kind of hate regularly spewed by the cross-burners at Aryan Nations … There is a special quality to eliminationist rhetoric, and it has the distinctive stench of burning flesh … (T)his is a large part of what is happening to our national body politic: People in key positions of media and conservative ideological prominence (Coulter, Limbaugh, even Bill O’Reilly) exhibit multiple symptoms of being pathological sociopaths, either antisocial or narcissistic, or a combination of both. And not only their fellow participants in the conservative movement, but mainstream centrists and even liberals are unable to figure out that there is something seriously wrong with these people because they are projecting their own normalcy onto them. They cannot perceive because they cannot believe — that, above all, these people are not operating within a framework guided by the boundaries of basic decency that restrain most of us.

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‘Me? I thought, OBE me? Up yours, I thought’

There’s something very strange about receiving a letter from Tony Blair’s office asking me if I want to accept this award. In the past couple of months I’ve been on Blair’s doorstep a few times. I have begged him to come out and meet me; I have been longing for a conversation with him, but he won’t come out, and now here he is asking me to meet him at the palace! I was there with a million people on February 15, and the last time I was there was just a couple of weeks ago. My cousin, Michael Powell, was arrested and taken to Thornhill Road police station in Birmingham where he died. Now, I know how he died. The whole of Birmingham knows how he died, but in order to get this article published and to be politically (or journalistically) correct, I have to say that he died in suspicious circumstances. The police will not give us any answers. We have not seen or heard anything of all the reports and investigations we were told were going to take place. Now, all that my family can do is join with all the other families who have lost members while in custody because no one in power is listening to us. Come on Mr Blair, I’ll meet you anytime. Let’s talk about your Home Office, let’s talk about being tough on crime. [more]

At Least 15,000 Have Left the AARP Following it’s Support of Medicare Bill

Senior citizens angry over the AARP’s endorsement of the Medicare bill are ripping up or burning their AARP membership cards and flooding the lobbying group’s Internet message board with complaints in what could be the biggest revolt in its ranks since the 1980s.

Many fear the Republican-backed bill approved by Congress on Tuesday will harm senior citizens, and they say the AARP — the nation’s most influential retiree lobby, with 35 million members — sold them out.

The bill “destroys one of the most successful programs in the history of this country,” Isaac Ben Ezra, president of the Massachusetts Senior Action Council, said as he led a demonstration of about 40 people here against the bill Monday. “Shame, AARP.”

AARP chief executive William Novelli said Wednesday that between 10,000 and 15,000 members have quit over the bill. [more]

via Atrios

Israel Army Warned by UN for Shooting at Aid Workers

The aid agencies have complained bitterly to Israel about soldiers firing on their relief workers, even when traffic has been co-ordinated in advance. “Several organisations are now seriously considering whether they should continue to work at all under these circumstances,” they said. [more]

Global Eye — Naked Gun

... so holy that he had his daddy pour cooking oil over his head ...Chris Floyd on the recent Patriot Act expansions, anointing with oil, full-contact lap dancing, and a cross-dressing martinet :

Don’t kid yourself — and don’t let them kid you. When they come at you with that pious sugar, telling you how they’re going to protect you, secure you, keep you free, you better run and check the back door – because that’s where their goons will be breaking in. … All Ashcroft’s boys have to do is say, “Boo! Terrorism!” and they can take whatever they want. … As usual, the power grab was accompanied by earnest pledges that it would only be used in the most extreme cases of genuine terrorist danger. … This was, of course, the usual load of mule manure we’ve come to expect …

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Amazing Bush Secret Kept With Iraq Visit


The world did not learn that Bush had spent 2 1/2 hours Thursday on a Thanksgiving Day visit to troops in Baghdad until his jumbo jet was again in the air, flying back to the United States, where he arrived early Friday, making it back to his ranch in Texas shortly before daybreak.

As the president was cheering up soldiers in a mess hall in Baghdad, newscasters back home were reporting that he was enjoying Thanksgiving dinner with his family at his ranch in Crawford, Texas. That was what reporters had been told by White House officials.

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