"In my lifetime we've gone from Eisenhower to George W. Bush.
If this is evolution, I believe within twelve years we'll be voting for plants." - Lewis Black
If we detain people without hearings, wiretap our own citizens, and torture people on mere suspicions, the terrorists have won, because we have given up everything our country has stood for.
Um ... Looks like we have given up everything our country has stood for.
A little over a week ago we ran away from home to a dilapidated cabin on Lake Crescent in the Olympic National Park. We needed a break from Current Events so we blew our flimsy budget to smithereens for five days of campfires, hiking, and canoeing. No radio, television, newspapers, or Internets allowed.
Carved out by glaciers during the last Ice Age, and surrounded by old growth forest, Lake Crescent is one of the deepest lakes in the country. Just being able to gaze upon the unbelievably brilliant blue water was a respite … at least for a little while … from the partisan junk and noise that passes for news, BP’s oil volcano, and the death tolls from our ongoing war crimes.
Frequently my mind is not my best friend. There I was in the middle of the Awesome Beauty of Nature and my brain insisted on reminding me of the terrible realities that existed just over the horizon. Then I had to give my brain a great big shove and tell it to sit down and shut the hell up. Sometimes that works … sometimes it doesn’t.
We were in a canoe paddling towards the middle of the lake. The sky and water was blue as the blue in a Maxfield Parrish painting. I looked down and it seemed I could see forever into the depths of the lake. And I wondered … What would it be like to lose something right here … in the middle of the lake? Something of great value. What would it be like if my wedding band slipped off my finger into the lake?
It would be lost the moment it hit the water.
Even if I immediately dove in after the ring it would sink faster and deeper than I could swim down. I would be able to clearly see it as it sank … for a long time. That’s the terrible part. To see it fall away with absolute clarity … sunlight glinting off the gold as it rapidly recedes farther and further into the depths … finally passing deeper than light can penetrate … and then the ring would seem to wink out of existence.
As we paddled back to shore a wave of sadness hit. Not about the hypothetical loss of a ring … but about all the things we’ve lost … clearly lost … things that are receding quickly into an irretrievable past.
John Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963. 7 days later President Lyndon Johnson established the Warren Commission to investigate the president’s murder. The 888-page final report, presented on September 24, 1964, concluded that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in the killing of Kennedy. There was no conspiracy to kill the president according to the Warren Commission.
15 years later the 1978-79 House Select Committee on Assassinations reexamined the evidence and concluded that President Kennedy was "most likely killed as the result of a conspiracy".
But what is the story consistently told by Main Stream Media?
An April 2010 Newsweek story, Political Violence in America, stated, “Nov. 22, 1963 - President John F. Kennedy was shot and killed by Lee Harvey Oswald, a Marxist and social outcast, while riding in a convertible in Dallas.”
Later in the same article, “April 4, 1968 - Civil-rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. is assassinated by James Ray on a hotel balcony in Memphis.”
There isn’t any mention of a civil trial held in 1999.
Coretta Scott King, King's widow, along with the rest of King's family, won a wrongful death civil trial against Loyd Jowers and "other unknown co-conspirators." Jowers claimed to have received $100,000 to arrange King's assassination. The jury of six whites and six blacks found Jowers liable and that "governmental agencies were parties" to the assassination plot. The jury also affirmed overwhelming evidence that identified someone else, not James Earl Ray, as the shooter, and that Mr. Ray was set up to take the blame.
Author Jim Douglass attended the trial and commented, “This historic trial was so ignored by the media that, apart from the courtroom participants, I was the only person who attended it from beginning to end. What I experienced in that courtroom ranged from inspiration at the courage of the Kings, their lawyer-investigator William F. Pepper, and the witnesses, to amazement at the government's carefully interwoven plot to kill Dr. King. The seriousness with which US intelligence agencies planned the murder of Martin Luther King, Jr. speaks eloquently of the threat Kingian nonviolence represented to the powers that be in the spring of 1968.”
The list of cover-ups and lies is seemingly endless. Even when the lies and cover-ups are exposed … the lies trump truth … and worm their way into our media … our history.
We are lied to about the assassinations of our leaders and we are lied to about why our country goes to war.
The New York Times said that the Pentagon Papers, leaked to the press by Daniel Ellsberg in 1971, "demonstrated, among other things, that the Johnson Administration had systematically lied, not only to the public but also to Congress, about a subject of transcendent national interest and significance."
The war in Vietnam.
Ellsberg said the documents, "… demonstrated unconstitutional behavior by a succession of presidents, the violation of their oath and the violation of the oath of every one of their subordinates."
Though we saw the Vietnam war was based on lies, it ground on for 4 more years. And no one but the dead were held accountable.
The United States has been waging wars for almost 9 years because of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The explanations the government has given us about the attacks and subsequent wars have been riddled with provable lies. But the wars continue to be supported by our media and funded by a majority of Republicans and Democrats.
James K. Galbraith wrote in The New Republic, “The financial crisis in America isn't over. It's ongoing, it remains unresolved, and it stands in the way of full economic recovery. The cause, at the deepest level, was a breakdown in the rule of law. And it follows that the first step toward prosperity is to restore the rule of law in the financial sector.”
“… Upon taking office, President Obama had a chance to change course … and didn't take it.”
There has been a criminal takeover of our country. The criminals in previous administrations, as well as the current administration, have made sure that accountability will never be enforced. Those who want to get at the truth … can’t. We don’t have access. We can’t dive that deep. The people who could help us … won’t.
We can see the lies so clearly as the truth sinks further away into a history that will never be taught. That’s why we - as a country - have never “Learned Our Lesson” because we’ve never been taught the truth.
We can only passively watch as our leaders take our country to wherever it is that will profit them most … leaving us to mourn the loss of truth … a loss that will never be relieved.
-- Looking For News? --
My Favorite(?) Excerpt
The discrepancy between the kind of society many Germans thought they were building and the reality of the horror of the Third Reich presents one of the most intriguing questions of our age. How could Fascism -- have happened in a modern, industrialized, educated nation?
Click here for the excerpt from They Thought They Were Free, The Germans, 1938-45 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1955) by Milton Mayer
Books I Give To People I Know and Maybe They'll Still Talk To Me But Probably Won't
Deep Green Resistance - Strategy to Save the Planet
Aric McBay, Lierre Keith, and Derrick Jensen
For years, Derrick Jensen has asked his audiences, “Do you think this culture will undergo a voluntary transformation to a sane and sustainable way of life?” No one ever says yes.
Deep Green Resistance starts where the environmental movement leaves off: industrial civilization is incompatible with life. Technology can’t fix it, and shopping—no matter how green—won’t stop it. To save this planet, we need a serious resistance movement that can bring down the industrial economy. Deep Green Resistance evaluates strategic options for resistance, from nonviolence to guerrilla warfare, and the conditions required for those options to be successful.
Clicking on the book links to Deep Green Resistance website.
The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder
by Vincent Bugliosi
"I hope that at some time in the near future a courageous U.S. attorney general, U.S. attorney, state attorney general, or district attorney in America who is committed to the rule of law and who has dedicated his career to enforcing the law fairly against all who, big or small, violate it, will hear the cries for justice from the graves of the thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children who had their lives violently cut short because of the lies of a man who smiled through it all. And that, with a sense of uncompromising righteousness, he will take the ample case I have laid out in this book before an American jury to let them decide whether George W Bush is guilty or not guilty of murder, and if so, what his punishment should be.
Even if this doesn't happen and what I have said in this book receives all the attention of a new fly in the forest, I do know that someone had to say what is written on the pages of this book."
From The Prosecution of George W. Bush For Murder by Vincent Bugliosi, page 168.
Clicking on the book links to the book's website.
Vincent Bugliosi testifying before the House Judiciary Committee of the U.S. Congress.
Family of Secrets: The Bush Dynasty, the Powerful Forces That Put It in the White House, and What Their Influence Means for America
by Russ Baker
How did Bush happen? How did George W. Bush, of all people, rise to the most powerful position in the world? This simple question sparked a five-year investigative odyssey by Russ Baker. What he found will force us to rethink virtually everything we thought we knew about the Bush family and its role in shaping recent American history.
In FAMILY OF SECRETS, Baker reveals that Bush, the people around him, and his policies are but an extreme, very public manifestation of what his family and its circle have always been about: an interlocking web of covert and overt machinations on behalf of a small cluster of elites-social, financial, industrial, military, intelligence-that enabled the Bush dynasty and propelled George W. Bush to the top.
Clicking on the book links to the Powell's Books online store.
Rules for Radicals
by Saul D Alinsky
"What follows is for those who want to change the world from what it is to what they believe it should be. The Prince was written by Machiavelli for the Haves on how to hold power. Rules for Radicals is written for the Have-Nots on how to take it away."
In 1971, Saul Alinsky wrote an entertaining classic on grassroots organizing titled Rules for Radicals.
For Alinsky, organizing is the process of highlighting what is wrong and convincing people they can actually do something about it.
Clicking on the book links to the author's website.
The End of America: Letter of Warning To A Young Patriot
by Naomi Wolf
In a stunning indictment of the Bush administration and Congress, best-selling author Naomi Wolf lays out her case for saving American democracy. In authoritative research and documentation Wolf explains how events of the last six years parallel steps taken in the early years of the 20th century’s worst dictatorships such as Germany, Russia, China, and Chile.
Clicking on the book links to the publisher's website.
As Basil Fawlty keenly observed: but ... this is no joke.
The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism
by Naomi Klein
Naomi Klein's The Shock Doctrine advances a truly unnerving argument: historically, while people were reeling from natural disasters, wars and economic upheavals, savvy politicians and industry leaders nefariously implemented policies that would never have passed during less muddled times. As Klein demonstrates, this reprehensible game of bait-and-switch isn't just some relic from the bad old days. It's alive and well in contemporary society, and coming soon to a disaster area near you.
Clicking on the book links to the author's website.
If you like Sean, Rush, Bill-O, Savage, and dutifully watch Fox ... You'll hate listening to Mike. I listen every day.
"Uncounted: The New Math of American Elections" As the 2008 presidential elections draw near and disillusioned voters are still reeling from the election fraud scandals of 2004 and 2006, Emmy Award-winning filmmaker David Earnhardt takes a logical and factual look at just how easy it is to alter election results and undermine the integrity of the entire democratic process. By speaking with a series of renowned computer programmers, journalists, statisticians, and even seasoned election officials, chilling proof that the people may not be guiding the direction of our country after all. Click here to go to the "Uncounted" website.
"Iraq For Sale" An eye-opening exposé of the war profiteering companies raking in billions of dollars from the war, click here to go to the "Iraq For Sale" website.
"War Made Easy" exposes a 50-year pattern of government deception and media spin that has dragged the United States into one war after another from Vietnam to Iraq. Click here to go to the "War Made Easy" website.