Support our troops - Get them out of there - Bring them home.
Click here for The Center For Public Integrity database of the 935 Lies of the Bush administration officials that led us into War.
From The Mike Malloy Program 01/24/08.
Investigate - Impeach - Indict - Imprison.
"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.
The Clown Behind the Monster is a Monster
Once upon a time there was a thoroughly mediocre man. He was incapable of finishing secondary or vocational school. By age 22, he found some small success as a salesman. He lived with his parents when not on the road making sales calls. Eventually he lost interest in the job, his performance dropped, and he was fired.
On the advice of his father’s friend he joined a political party. He didn’t join out of any sense of conviction. He didn’t even know the party’s platform. He just wanted the sense of being part of something - of belonging. When the party came into power he saw it as his best chance at some sort of success.
By his own admission he did best when he was told what to do. Projects he initiated failed. He did not have the capacity to think about what he was doing with any depth. His inability to speak coherently reflected his inability to think. He would obliviously string together contradictory ideas within a single statement. He was literally a thoughtless man.
But he could carry out the tasks he was given as long as he operated within an established framework. He did not excel at his job in the same way a cog in a machine does not excel at being a cog. It simply performs as a cog should. He eventually rose to a low level management position and there he would stay for the rest of his career.
He worked primarily in transportation planning. In time he became adept at moving people from one place to another in the most efficient manner. To him the destination was irrelevant. Initially he was working on the forced emigration of Jews out of Germany. But within a few years, on orders from his superiors, the process was adjusted to transport Jews to death camps. And that is how Adolf Eichmann became The Man In the Glass Booth on trial for his life in Jerusalem in April 1961.
Political theorist Hannah Arendt traveled to Israel and covered the trial in a series of articles for The New Yorker magazine which evolved into her book Eichmann in Jerusalem published in 1963.
Eichmann was portrayed in the press - and perceived by most people - as an evil, sadistic, Nazi mastermind finally brought to justice. Arendt saw someone ultimately more horrifying than that.
She originated the phrase "the banality of evil" to describe the phenomenon of Eichmann. She raised the idea that evil is a function of thoughtlessness, a tendency of ordinary people to conform to mass opinion and obey authority without thinking about the consequences of their actions. The world wanted a monster. And she gave them one. But not the monster they wanted. And for that she and her book have been vilified for over 50 years. The monster Arendt saw on trial in the glass booth was not a rare species of human. The horror of what Arendt discovered was that the world might be filled with Eichmanns. And social psychology experiments conducted by Yale University psychologist Stanley Milgram in 1961 proved it was the non-Eichmanns of this world who are in the minority.
The Milgram experiment on obedience to authority figures measured the willingness of subjects to obey instructions to perform acts that conflicted with their personal conscience. The 40 men who participated in the Milgram experiment were from 20 to 50 years old, with differing educational and professional backgrounds.
The experimenter outlined the procedure. The participant was the "teacher" who delivered an electric shock to the "learner" who was in a different room, each time an incorrect answer was given.
Before starting the experiment, the “learner” informed the experimenter and the “teacher” he had a heart condition. The experimenter assured the “learner” the shocks might be painful but were not dangerous. The participant believed that he was delivering real shocks to the “learner” but the “learner” was actually a confederate in the experiment and pretended to be shocked.
Milgram’s “shock generator” started at 30 volts and increased in 15-volt increments up to 450 volts. The switches were labeled "Slight Shock," "Moderate Shock" and "Danger: Severe Shock." The final two switches were ominously labeled "XXX."
As the experiment progressed, the participant would hear the learner pleading to stop, complaining about his heart. At the 300-volt level the “learner” banged on the wall and begged to be released. Beyond this point, the “learner” became completely silent and didn’t answer further questions. The experimenter instructed the participant to treat this silence as an incorrect response and deliver another shock.
If the “teacher” balked, the experimenter issued these statements:
Please continue. The experiment requires that you continue. It is absolutely essential that you continue. You have no other choice, you must go on.
Before the experiment, Milgram polled forty psychiatrists who predicted that when the “learner” demanded to be released, most subjects would stop the experiment. They predicted that by the 300-volt shock, when the victim became silent, only 3.73 percent of the subjects would continue, and they believed that only one-tenth of one percent of the subjects would administer the highest shocks on the board.
In reality, 65% of the participants in Milgram’s study delivered the maximum shocks. All the participants continued to 300 volts. The conclusion is undeniable: ordinary people will likely follow orders given by an authority figure, even to the extent of killing an innocent human being.
In Milgram’s experiment, the authority figure was a man in a lab coat. That was the only condition required to make a regular guy off the street torture and kill a stranger in the next room.
In Eichmann’s time the authority figures were the people who ruled German society. The cops, lawyers, judges, politicians, and Nazi officials compelled a nation to take part in genocide. This is not to excuse or exonerate Adolf Eichmann. This is to explain Adolf Eichmann. And to explain … us.
The bitter controversy that erupted with the publication of Eichmann in Jerusalem rages to this day. And the damning conclusions derived from the Milgram experiment have been glossed over by attacking the ethics behind the experiment itself. The inconvenient truth is that Eichmann was not an anomaly. He was a typical unthinking human being. And Milgram proved most people, the majority of people, can easily become an Eichmann. The consensus is that it’s best not to think about that at all. Better to imagine the singular monster on trial in the glass booth than to realize his numbers are legion.
I wrote all this because the drones are still flying. The bombs are still falling. The United States of America is still waging war in Iraq and wherever else the rulers of America have casually determined there are enemies to The American Way of Life.
We know the names of the corporations, the CEO’s, the politicians, and the presidents who were - and are - the cogs spinning within the American Death Machine. Adolf Eichmann was correct in describing himself as only one cog in the machine. But as Arendt wrote, “ … all the cogs in the machinery, no matter how insignificant, are in court forthwith transformed back into perpetrators, that is to say, into human beings.”
The day may come when the cogs of the American Death Machine are brought into a courtroom and transformed back into human beings. It is imperative for this to happen. Because if it does not come to pass … we shall continue to be ruled by … and ourselves become … monsters. It doesn’t end well.
Hannah Arendt closes Eichmann in Jerusalem addressing him directly, “Just as you supported and carried out a policy of not wanting to share the earth with the Jewish people and the people of a number of other nations - as though you and your superiors had any right to determine who should and who should not inhabit the world - we find that no one, that is, no member of the human race, can be expected to want to share the earth with you. This is the reason, and the only reason, you must hang.”
Oh yeah. I’m a Twit now. Please … Everyone who cares about All Things Bob can follow me @bobalex_63
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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.