I happened to catch a bit of this on XM the other morning, and I was SHOCKED by the, er, ENTHUSIASM Gupta and his co-host showed toward the idea that getting to work on war-pulverized bodies was a good thing; CNN’s Sanjay Gupta, MD highlights Battlefield Breakthroughs - National Military Community | Examiner.com.
"Detroit isn’t exactly the paragon of fiscal responsibility, with its Emergency Manager—they have an honest-to-god “emergency manager”—offering a stern warning:
In a report to be presented to Michigan’s treasurer on Monday, Kevyn D. Orr, the emergency manager appointed in March to take over operations here, described long-term obligations of at least $15 billion, unsustainable cash flow shortages and miserably low credit ratings that make it difficult to borrow.
But, they’re somehow on the verge of finding $450 million for a new hockey arena."
...Scanning both WebMD and wikipedia for "Fanapt side effects" reveals that great pains have been taken to make the psychotic side-effects difficult to find, or eliminated them altogether...Read More
The TSA is an insult to human decency. They are completely ineffective, except as a means of stealing liberty, personal property (and $8.1 billion taxpayer dollars annually) Make the airlines 100% liable for any property damage or bodily injury, and be done with it. The TSA doesn't need to be improved, it needs to be abolished.
Remember the elections? I made the mistake of telling a friend I wasn't going to vote. She totally flipped out and told me, "Your HAVE to vote!" I asked her why and she just stared back at me for a few awkward seconds before rolling her eyes and turning away. It got me thinking about how successful our government has been in drumming their version of patriotism into our heads… regardless of how me will never admit it.Read More
In this piece in Rolling Stone, about Rush Limbaugh, and Republican "morning after" analysis (har har) ,Matt Taibbi dials back the venom and really tries to "help". But the reason Romney lost is exactly that Obama and the Democrats quite successfully portrayed him as anti-woman, anti-working person, anti-poor, anti-hispanic, pro-(HORRORS) business, pro rich people, etc. Romney, for his part, never gave anyone anything resembling a concrete reason to vote FOR him. OH, and special mention to the Republican Party for flushing millions of votes by marginalizing Ron Paul and his supporters at the convention, stealing his delegates, and refusing to accord him the respect he deserved. Have fun talking to yourself, Rush.
Green Party Presidential candidate Jill Stein had some good comments on military spending, war, the Patriot Act, and the NDAA during the Third-Party Debate held a couple of weeks ago, so we kind of overlooked some of the, er, OTHER stuff she said. Unfortunately, the first of four pillars of her "Green New Deal" platform fleshes these things out in EXCRUCIATING detail. However, as luck would have it, we have critiqued this list of demands before, because it is pretty much the first proposed list of demands to emerge from the "Occupy" movement. Although to say we "critiqued" it is to be extremely charitable - actually, we tore it limb from limb, as befitting the most anti-freedom, anti-liberty, pro-state document ever, and - bonus - it COMPLETELY AVOIDED any reference to the illegal wars we are increasingly involved in (which Stein mentions as an almost-footnote here). None of this is to say that if the other three pillars are your primary issues (Green Energy, Financial Reform, Democracy) you should not consider Jill, and she sure seems like a nice person, but one thing is for certain - she's no libertarian.
In this rather partisan and somewhat confused article, Andrew Leonard doesn't let reality get in the way of his Obama-burnishing. In trying to indict Romney on one of the very few decent positions he has (e.g., against the auto bailouts), he takes Romney to task for claiming that the bailed-out Chrysler Corp has shipped Jeep production to China,Read More
Icelanders have always been framed in terms of their viking ancestors; strong, brave and independent. So in the wake of their government proving untrustworthy stewards of their country and their money, they decided to write a new constitution which places an emphasis on, you guessed it, free stuff. Here are some highlights from the national forum.Read More
Still, nice to see the facts getting out there; "Forget about “lockboxes” and other rhetorical devices used by politicians to perpetuate the unconstitutional falsehood that is Social Security, the unhappier reality is that the minute your employer withholds your Social Security taxes, the money is no longer yours. Deal with it." We blogged about this TWO YEARS AGO, and the world greeted it, some with anger, most with yawns. But we keep plugging away at it...
[caption id="attachment_1385" align="aligncenter" width="233"] Big Bag of OPM[/caption]Rarely happens, but a reading in church today seems very relevant to our late state of economy; "Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments have become moth-eaten. Your gold and your silver have rusted; and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire. It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure! Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; and the outcry of those who did the harvesting has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you." James 5: 1-6
Government tends toward centralizing decision making farthest from those affected, for the benefit of the central authority and its connected interests. Completely asymmetrical. Freedom, on the other hand, fosters granular decision making. That is, under freedom, decisions are made closest to those affected, by those affected most. Perfectly symmetrical.
Most people are 'big talkers'. They swagger and rank on people when they think they aren't around that they would never say to their faces, and moreover most of them would be HORRIFIED if the person being insulted ever found out. 99.9999% of 'racists' would never harm a person of another race in any way, and the same is true for people who say shit about teh gays. I don't know how that translates into a 300-odd-million homophobic lynch mob, maybe I'm missing something...
I purchased a Whirlpool Cabrio washing machine on 5/13/11 (delivered on 5/15), and it failed utterly on 5/31/12, with the estimated cost of repair exceeding the cost of replacement. The supervisor I talked to at the "Whirlpool Customer Experience Center" told me in no uncertain terms that they would not honor the warranty, despite the machine being loosely within the terms of their "12-month warranty". I will NEVER purchase a washing machine, or any other appliance from Whirlpool, ever again.
[caption id="attachment_1371" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="No Words For This, Just Pain"][/caption]I know that it is impossible, but for a second try to put the hideousness of the gleeful maceration of Kelly Thomas' body by these animals out of your mind, and look simply at the proportionality of the incident. A mentally-ill man "disrespected" the sub-human Manuel Ramos (and his partner Jay Cicinelli), and for that offense against His Radiant Personage, he was pounded, literally, into hamburger, in such an extended effort that they had to tag-team the helpless, dying man to finish the job;
Much hoopla is being expended over the retirement of Discovery, the last Space Shuttle, with reporters waxing poetic, and senior officials crying over the carcass of the blasted thing, ostensibly because of the heroism and audacity of the world's most expensive commuter conveyance, but in all likelihood over the loss of a gravy train such an end represents.
Here, as an antidote to all the maudlin, weepy statism, are the real facts. The Space Shuttle was a hideous waste of money. Its technology was obsolete before it ever launched. Its cost per payload pound skyrocketed from $120 to $24,000, and the two disasters killed 14 astronauts entirely needlessly. NASA is nothing more than a covert missile development program coupled to a jingoistic propaganda program. Good bye, Socialist Space Antique, and good riddance.
The term ‘insurgent’ has been used (and misused) a whole lot since about ten minutes after the officially announced ‘end’ of the Iraq War. Lucky for us, the US Army Special Forces Counterinsurgency Field Manual
(the book that ‘Surgin’ General’ Petraeus is said to have ‘written’ on the subject)
contains, along with tips on how to win friends, subvert democracy and destroy due process in an occupied country, a handy field guide to three main types of insurgency.
One of these, in light of the end of Ron Paul’s Republican presidential bid, and the beginning of his new vehicle for change, The Campaign For Liberty, is pretty interesting;
A foco (Spanish word meaning focus or focal point) is a single, armed cell that emerges from hidden strongholds in an atmosphere of disintegrating legitimacy. In theory, this cell is the nucleus around which mass popular support rallies. The insurgents build new institutions and establish control on the basis of that support.”
Except for the “armed” part (The Revolution has always been explicitly peaceful and anti-war) and the “establish control” bit, this essentially describes the new strategy – to establish a core group of liberty-loving people and to have them (democratically) infiltrate the current system so that they will be ready to liberate the masses when the corrupt, incompetent Empire falls flat on its face.
“The insurgents build new institutions and establish control on the basis of that support. For a foco insurgency to succeed, government legitimacy must be near total collapse. Timing is critical. The foco must mature at the same time the government loses legitimacy and before any alternative appears. The most famous foco insurgencies were those led by Castro and Che Guevara.”
Bad role models from a philosophical perspective, for sure, but in terms of strategy pretty relevant.
“The distinguishing characteristics of a foco insurgency are The deliberate avoidance of preparatory organizational work. The rationale is based on the premise that most peasants are intimidated by the authorities and will betray any group that cannot defend itself. ”
This part doesn’t apply, because this revolution is peaceful, democratic, and overt, the ‘counter-insurgency’ strategies to this will be completely ineffective. Unfortunately, many other CI strategies are already in place and are well-advanced;
“Restrictions. Rights on the legality of detention or imprisonment of personnel (for example, habeas corpus) may be temporarily suspended. This measure must be taken as a last resort, since it may provide the insurgents with an effective propaganda theme. PRC [Population & Resources Control] measures can also include curfews or blackouts, travel restrictions, and restricted residential areas such as protected villages or resettlement areas. Registration and pass systems and control of … critical supplies such as weapons, food, and fuel are other PRC measures. Checkpoints, searches, roadblocks; surveillance, censorship, and press control…”
You get the picture.
Apparently ‘Counter-Insurgency’ has become ‘Pre-emptive Counter-Insurgency’.
We have our work cut out for us.