For The Trees
Who is our economy FOR, anyway?
About the Authors:
BEST OF STF:
Articles not at STF:
The ATLA Speech on building a progressive infrastructure
Lowering the Bar
The Attack on Trial Lawyers and Tort Law
Who's Behind the Attack on Liberal Professors
On the Right and their communications infrastructure:
Why Republicans Win
Win or Lose
The "Conventional Wisdom" Machine
Some History of the Conservative Movement
HOW TO FIGHT BACK
An Amplifier Of Our Own
Don't Blame the Democrats
How They Do It 1 2 3 4
You're Gonna Get Drafted
Scalia and Self-Government
Who is Our Economy For?
Voting Machine Story Link Collection
What's Wrong with this Picture? (Voting Machines)
Like Meat in the Supermarket
Thin Line 1 2 3
Fixing Social Security
Seeing the Forest I, II, III
"Incredibly Positive News"
The Breadth of It
The Republican Crony Club
Ralph Nader is a Scab
John's Best Of:
Kerry Smear Page
9/11 Commission Report Damages Bush -- if you read it
Florida Goon Squad Intimidated the Supreme Court
The Use and Abuse of George Orwell
Zizka's Archives (John's previous identity)
Information Clearing House
What REALLY Happened
Links to Other Weblogs:
Things You Have To Believe To Be A Republican Today
Things you have to believe to be a Republican today. Including:
And read the comments at the end, left by pissed-off right wingers.
Voted For Nader - Now Supports Dean
Yahoo! News - HOWARD DEAN FOR PRESIDENT:
"Heretofore I have opposed strategic voting tactics. When citizens vote for candidates because they seem likely to win, it creates a winner-takes-all aggregation of support. That subverts democracy's underlying assumption: that people vote for the man or woman they'd most like to see win. At its worst, pick-the-winner voting elevates any candidate lucky enough to enjoy an early jump in the polls to premature, and possibly undeserved victory. Let the electorate vote for politicians whose ideas they like best and let the chads hang where they may.He goes on to make the case why Dean is the one who can beat Bush, including, "Frankly, the other Democratic contenders don't have what it takes to stand up to Karl Rove's brutal war machine." Please read the whole thing!
Tax Cuts Or Spending Increases?
The right-wingers say that tax cuts stimulate the economy and government spending harms the economy. But why would tax cuts stimulate the economy more than spending increases? A $1 billion tax cut stimulates the economy only if the money is borrowed, by adding $1 billion that can be spent, which increases demand. But so does a $1 billion spending increase. In fact, a $1 billion spending increase would generally be used in ways that stimulate demand more than a tax cut. The spending would usually go to average people, who would immediately spend it on needed goods, so it would all be spent quickly. Meanwhile a tax cut would go to higher income people, who might spend it on a BMW, or more likely just save it.
If the money is borrowed it means that we all have to pay interest on that loan for many years, which is the opposite of stimulus. With massive borrowing the government also competes with businesses and others who want to borrow money, which further restrains the economy.
And what about a tax cut that is "paid for" by cutting spending? Cutting spending means laying off teachers, or not building a road that would employ hundreds of construction workers, or cutting back on unemployment payments, or cutting back on health care, which is a major employer. Think about the grocery store in the neighborhood of all the people who won't be getting unemployment payment extensions next year.
So when you hear that tax cuts are good for jobs and the economy, and spend is bad for the economy, it might sound simple on the surface, but it's not what it seems. The argument presupposes that taxes are collected and then the money just disappears. Don't fall for it. In fact, it's a useful life rule to just disregard anything a right-winger says as a trick with an ulterior motive of taking your money or lowering your wages. ;-0
Greider For Dean
Why I'm for Dean:
"Dean is opening the possibility of transforming politics--shaking up the tired, timid old order, inviting plain-wrapper citizens back into an active role--and that's why so many people, myself included, are for him."
Whatever Happened With This, Anyway?
ABCNEWS.com : Were Israelis Detained on Sept. 11 Spies?
Speak For Yourself
Yahoo! News - Democrats Hope Sen. Breaux Seeks Re-Election
Christopher Lydon Interviews... :
Christopher Lydon Interviews... : George Lakoff.
Create Your Own Ad
Bush in 30 Seconds at MoveOn.org. Check out who's judging the contest!
How Many More?
How Many More? (850K)
No More Medicare
It looks like the Medicare Privatization bill is going to pass. Senate Votes to End Medicare Filibuster:
"Twenty-two Democrats and independent Sen. James Jeffords of Vermont joined 47 Republicans in voting to end Kennedy's filibuster."I'll see if I can find out who those 22 Democrats are. I think recall campaigns are in order here. I was counting on Medicare being there for me, and now it won't.
Prescription Drug / Old Man Humor
In honor of my 50th birthday last week, AND in honor of the Republican Medicare Privatization bill using the mask of prescription drugs for seniors (see how I got politics into this?), I'll post this that came in the mail today:
D A M N I T O LI took out all the forwarded '>>'s
Please read this: About a Turkey:
"It probably hatched in an incubator on a huge farm, most likely in the Midwest or the South. Its life went downhill from there. A few days after hatching — in the first of many unnatural if not necessarily painful indignities — it had its upper beak and toenails snipped off. A turkey is normally a very discriminating eater (left to its own devices, it will search out the exact food it wants to eat). In order to fatten it up quickly, farmers clip the beak, transforming it into a kind of shovel. With its altered beak, it can no longer pick and choose what it will eat. Instead, it will do nothing but gorge on the highly fortified corn-based mash that it is offered, even though that is far removed from the varied diet of insects, grass and seeds turkeys prefer. And the toenails? They're removed so that they won't do harm later on: in the crowded conditions of industrial production, mature turkeys are prone to picking at the feathers of their neighbors — and even cannibalizing them.BUT you can get natural, humanely raised turkeys:
"What to do? One solution is to bypass Broad Breasted Whites altogether. A few nonprofit groups — including my own, Slow Food U.S.A., and the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy — are working with independent family farms to ensure that a handful of older, pre-industrial turkey varieties, known as heritage breeds, are still being grown. These varieties are slowly gaining recognition for their dark, rich and succulent meat. (My group, which encourages the preservation of artisanal foods, sells turkeys on behalf of these farmers, but we don't profit from the transactions.)My message is think about what you eat. You can get meat that is raised humanely. Or you can support the corporate culture that only treats EVERYTHING according to its value as a monetary unit - inlcuding you.
Republican "Under The Radar" Smear Campaign In The South Begins
Here is how the Republicans get votes in the South -- tell them that Democrats are JEWS: Ann Coulter: The party of ideas, (published at the Heritage Foundation's Townhall)
"In addition to having a number of family deaths among them, the Democrats' other big idea – too nuanced for a bumper sticker – is that many of them have Jewish ancestry. There's Joe Lieberman: Always Jewish. Wesley Clark: Found Out His Father Was Jewish in College. John Kerry: Jewish Since He Began Presidential Fund-Raising. Howard Dean: Married to a Jew. Al Sharpton: Circumcised. Even Hillary Clinton claimed to have unearthed some evidence that she was a Jew – along with the long lost evidence that she was a Yankees fan. And that, boys and girls, is how the Jews survived thousands of years of persecution: by being susceptible to pandering. "And, in case there is any doubt at all about whether this is targeted to white Southern voters:
"Their humble-origins claptrap is designed to disguise the fact that liberals think ordinary people are racist scum."If you think this stuff isn't effective, you haven't been in the Bible Belt.
It doesn't matter WHO the Democrats nominate, it matters how that candidate responds to Republican character assassination. That's what Republicans DO.
I discovered this at Atrios' site. I'm posting about it here because I want to make the point that this should not be dismissed as the rantings of wingnut Ann Coulter: this is the Republican machine at work. This is Bush doing this, and must be seen as BUSH and Bush directly.
More Miami madness... "snatch squads"
Just found this in my email inbox...
Laura Raymond, NLG Student Organizer, has just sent this update from Miami:
I can’t emphasis how crazy we all feel this is. People who have been doing legal support for mass demonstrations for years and years–even R2K legal folks who have dealt with Timoney before–are amazed at how unprecedented and overwhelming it is.
The unusual thing is that there are no mass arrests! Arrests are mostly being made of small groups or individuals for seemingly nothing. Random people are being pulled behind police lines that may be 3 rows thick and legal observers can’t access them for names and descriptions, nor can medics access people who are hurt in the process. Also undercovers are snatching random people in the crowds and pulling them away. A huge thing is the tactic of unmarked “snatch squads” patrolling the city and grabbing people off the streets. We have 3 Legal Observer’s that have been picked off thisway in separate incidents, and for these we have we have witnesses reporting that the LO’s were beaten by the police. It is really eery and frightening.
Many arrest reports we receive include brutality, beatings and such–tasors,wooden and rubber bullets, many cops beating one person, concussion grenades,electrical shields, etc.–so it seems as though arrest numbers are down but the intensity of the arrest and the complexity of defending all these cases is high. This seems like a good media tactic on the part of the police-the small arrest numbers won’t put the actions in much mainstream media.
Legal Observers and defense and support people are overwhelmed and we have a lot on our plate. We have a big problem coming up as many of us are leaving this weekend and we will have alot of unresolved legal issues remaining. Plus the precedent all these new tactics set-especially this quote in our press release that this is being referred to by city officials as a “blueprint for homeland security.”
As is the case with nearly everyone here, I got 45 minutes of sleep last night and 2 hours the night before. We are so maxed out but we just cannot stop. I am going to be careful and try to not get arrested but if I do they know to call you.
November 21, 2003
"This is not an enemy that can defeat us militarily."
[DOH! Neither were the Vietnamese! How blind can you be?!? -Thomas]
Monday, November 24, 2003 - Page updated at 12:29 A.M.
2 U.S. soldiers meet grisly end at hands of Iraqi mob
By Seattle Times news services
MOSUL, Iraq — Assailants killed two U.S. soldiers riding in a civilian car yesterday in this northern city and, in a bloody scene, crowds then reportedly mutilated their bodies, trashed the vehicle and made off with the soldiers' belongings.
[... descriptions of various and sundry other attacks against everyone under the sun... ]
Despite the surge in both the scope and ferocity of the attacks, [Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt, the U.S. military deputy director for operations in Iraq] dismissed any threat posed by the guerrillas, whom he described as occasionally clever but overall "a pretty poor group of insurgents.
"We have nothing at this point that causes us to be concerned," he said. "This is not an enemy that can defeat us militarily."
FTAA protests: Miami Police Out of Control
I was talking with folks at Dave's birthday party last night (great bash) about the absurdity of Miami spending $16.5 million dollars on security, because "rioters" in Seattle caused $2 million in damage. Economically speaking, it would be more rational to set aside a few million to pay business for any damage caused by "rioters" (assuming any would be caused at all, especially in the absence of police provocation)... but really, we know that's not what it's about. It's about the powers that be attempting to discourage and suppress protest, it's about their total fear that the average people of this and other countries are going to wage up and realize that the agenda of unrestrained capitalism is destroying their quality of life, standard of living, and threatening the very viability of life on this planet, it's about how the "Seattle coalition" represents something new and different ... it is about the efforts of the Secret Service to systematically exclude (link to Google search) any and all protestors from the Presidential presence, and what that says for the health of democracy and protest in our society at this point.
... everything I heard in advance of the protests against the FTAA in Miami was pretty bad - this included police sweeping in and arresting protest organizers and seizing equipment in advance of the protest. And all my expectations have been fulfilled - even exceeded.
Yesterday, I received an email outlining how a producer for Democracy Now, Ana Nogueira, had been arrested as she covered the protests against the FTAA in Miami. And wrote a letter of protest.
Today, I received this (links to full posting on my personal weblog), an email describing a series of atrocious abuses by police and jail administrators. I haven't been able to obtain independent confirmation (god forbid the mainstream media cover this - try finding out anything about the treatment of protestors in jail via Google News, for example - nothing), but Democracy Now says "the day was marked by extraordinary police brutality against demonstrators", and mentions that two of the people working with them were hit by rubber bullets. According to the Miami Herald, there were "almost as many police as there were protestors"... massive overkill; as has been the case at almost every event since Seattle... weeks and months of fear mongering, followed by... nothing. But, what do you read in the New York Times? "Demonstration Turns Violent"
Here's a Miami Herald quote on the theme of the first paragraph:
Here's a New York Times quote:
A "well-oiled machine". Yo gotta love it. Not.
The Miami Herald also reports on a massive over-reaction by the Miami-Dade police to a protest outside a court house, quoting the police as blandly denying what all observers appeared to confirm: that the police moved in and arrested scores of people for "failing to disperse", when they were in the process of doing exactly that...
Orwellian! Also see the FTAA IMC reports on this assault.
Starhawk says (a report from her is included in the posting on my personal blog):
"This action has truly seen some of the most blatant abuses of police power I¹ve encountered in a long time."
Thea Lee, the A.F.L.-C.I.O.'s top international economist, said "I've never seen anything like this show of force and the abuse of ordinary people." (NYT) and "'The Miami Police Department disgraced itself with an outrageous use of force." (Miami Herald)
... this says to me that we need to step up our level of commitment, that we need to turn out tens of thousands of protestors to the next event, that we need to hound and harass these bastards from one end of the planet to the other, give them no rest, until they broaden their agenda to reflect the real concerns and needs of the people of this planet.
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