August 26, 2008 archive

Hurray for CT!

Just a heads up, but if you want some fun tune into MSNBC where  Chris is having trouble talking over the demonstrators.

Couldn’t happen to a bigger asshole.

My favorite chant is- “Do your job!”

Four at Four

  1. Reuters reports the U.N. says has evidence air strikes killed 90 Afghans.

    “Investigations by UNAMA (United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan) found convincing evidence, based on the testimony of eyewitnesses, and others, that some 90 civilians were killed, including 60 children, 15 women and 15 men,” U.N. Special Envoy to Afghanistan Kai Eide said in a statement.

    The airstrikes came from U.S.-led coalition forces in a move against the Taliban in western Afghanistan. According to the AFP, the airstrike’s death “toll is one of the highest for civilians killed in military action” since 2001. “The US-led coalition had initially said only 30 Taliban had died, but acknowledged on Tuesday that five civilians — two women and three children — were dead in the strikes that also killed a Taliban target.”

    The NY Times reports Afghanistan wants stopped the airstrikes and raids. “The Afghan Council of Ministers… demanded a status of forces agreement, which would stipulate that the authority and responsibilities of international forces be negotiated, and they said that aerial bombing, illegal detentions and house raids by international forces must be stopped.”

    The council condemned the rising number of civilian casualties and said: “The issues of uncoordinated house searches and harassing civilians have also been of concern to the government of Afghanistan, which has been shared with the commanders of international forces in Afghanistan. Unfortunately, to date, our demands have not been addressed. Rather, more civilians, including women and children, are losing their lives as a result of air raids.”

    Meanwhile, the Taliban win over locals at the gates of Kabul according to The Observer. “The real strength of the insurgents lies not in their ability to ambush convoys or plant roadside bombs but in the parallel administration they have managed to establish in huge areas across the south and east of Afghanistan. There they make the law, enforcing a harsh, but sometimes welcome, order while intimidating any dissenters. Their strategy is deliberate and long-term.”

Four at Four continues with a reassessment of poverty in New York City, the Big Coal lobby at the conventions, and the Bush administration plans to scale back whale protection.

Was McCain a POW?

The megamedia seem to be catching on that McCain was a POW…cause that answer comes up again and again and again with McCain.  

Docudharma at the Convention…Thanks ctrenta!

From the Las Vegas Sun:


Christian Avard works on a Web posting Monday for inside “The Big Tent,” where Web writers ply their trade near the Democratic National Conven-tion. “This is a long way from the gold lame of the Riv,” says a Democratic strategist, referring to the Riviera, which hosted a convention two years ago for liberal bloggers.

Our intrepid reporter Christian Avard and Docudharma are featured prominently above a nice article about New Media/blogging by J. Patrick Coolican. I like his first paragraph!

DENVER – This is the headquarters of the vast left-wing conspiracy. They’re all here:, Media Matters and Markos Moulitsas, and if a bomb went off, Bill O’Reilly wouldn’t be disappointed.

There is also a nice comment from John Podesta, President Clinton’s ex chief of staff on how blogging has changed the relationships in politics and journalism. Go read the article, though of course, the picture is worth a thousand words!

More blogging on blogging below the fold, as we bloggers say!

Assassins? Criminal Terrorists? Terrorists!

I had planned on putting up another post covering what’s good about people and the dedication of, but with the breaking news last night, 8-25-08, we probably are seeing a continuation of recent reports about the reality of the world we live in. A reality that’s been mostly under the surface of this countries citizens but has been rearing it’s ugly face these last few years, pushed on by what we as a society have been allowing to come across our airwaves in the name of ‘free speach’!

The story line broke, on some of the interactive boards, with an initial report from a local Denver Colo. News Channel CBS 4 Denver Colorado about the arrest of a couple of very suspicious characters and has grown from there into a possible assassination attempt on the Democratic Candidate for the Presidency at the Democratic National Convention.

Manufacturing Tuesday or Monday part deux!

Yesterday I had hit on the situation going on with the automakers.  Originally, I had intended to include some other stories, but the first piece was large enough (perhaps too large?) that I realized that I had to push the other pieces. Well, as promised, we got some interesting stuff. First on the auto front a cool piece on zero emission cars.  Next we got fallout from biofuels and water preservation.  Third, it seems the Chinese aren’t so thirsty for the black stuff right now. Lastly could the current woes Australia’s mining sector tell us something?  

Winning By Losing? – The Politics Of Fear

Obama’s foreign policy positions have become indistinguishable from those of McCain. His campaign thus far has been virtually built around absorbing, co-opting and quieting the anti-war/anti-fascist/anti-imperialist movements.

How far do you go before winning becomes losing, and becomes just a shiny new paintjob hawked by a very good salesman?

August 26, 2008 9 min 38 sec

Naomi Klein speaks about Obama and the intellectual and political integrity of the progressive movement

Open Thread


Fresh baked thread.   Sliced thick with comments.

Docudharma Times Tuesday August 26

Darth Vader The Shot Gun Master

Goes On A Peace Mission

The Irony In This Is Just To Much

Tuesday’s Headlines:

McCain uses POW ordeal to fight housing gaffe

Dazed Iraqi teen suicide bomber says she didn’t want to die

Facing up to violence in Iran

Thousands evacuated after blasts hit Chinese chemical plant

Pakistan bans Taliban after suicide bombings

Berlusconi uses his summer break to make Christmas CD

Russian threat to Nato supply route in Afghanistan

Township youths tackle South Africa’s ‘white sport’: rugby

Zimbabwe: Blow for Mugabe as opposition candidate is elected speaker

Fate of Amazon tribes on trial as Brazil awaits reservation ruling

U.N. troops offer lessons in peace in Lebanon

Yoga, French poetry, pizza making — the international forces stationed there give war-weary residents a respite from their cares.

By Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

August 26, 2008  

EBEL AL SAQI, LEBANON — The yoga instructor chuckles, and the three dozen or so women follow along, giggling nervously before bursting through some invisible layer of restraint or sorrow and laughing with abandon. Grins widen into smiles, tentative squeals bloom into full-bore howls.

The yoga instructor is teaching inner peace, but he’s also trying to keep the peace: He’s Warrant Officer Mal Singh of the Indian army, part of a 30-year-old United Nations force stationed in southern Lebanon.

The laughs peter out, some of the women wiping tears from their eyes as they gather up their handbags and head home.

“If we feel peace inside ourselves, maybe we will have peace,” says Hoda Munzer, a 35-year-old owner of a nearby clothing shop, who has taken a break from work to attend the class with her 9-year-old daughter, Sueen, in this hilltop community near the Israeli border.

Cheney To Visit Georgia Next Week

Ukraine, Azerbaijan Also on Itinerary?

By Dan Eggen

Washington Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, August 26, 2008; Page A03  

Vice President Cheney will travel next week to war-ravaged Georgia as part of a swing through several former Soviet republics, making him the highest-level U.S. emissary to visit the country since hostilities between Russia and Georgia broke out this month, officials said yesterday.

The trip will put the Bush administration’s most prominent hawk in a war zone still occupied by lingering Russian troops, and is likely to irritate leaders in Moscow, who have condemned the United States for siding with Georgia in the conflict.


Obama’s Family Night Out

After Kennedy Electrifies Crowd, the Would-Be First Lady Calls on Democrats to ‘Stop Doubting’ and ‘Start Dreaming’

By Jonathan Weisman

Washington Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, August 26, 2008; Page A01

DENVER Aug. 25 — After an emotional speech by an ailing Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, the face of the Democratic Party shifted on Monday night to a new generation of leaders, as Michelle Obama opened the Democratic National Convention with a tribute to her husband and a call to the country to listen “to our hopes instead of our fears,” and “to stop doubting and to start dreaming.”

Seeking to ground Sen. Barack Obama in the experience of America’s working class while recapturing the lofty ideals that propelled him toward his party’s presidential nomination, Michelle Obama’s family-themed speech was the climax of a dramatic opening day for a political party confident of its chances of capturing the White House but still struggling to lay aside its own divisions.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

He who seeks happiness

by hurting those who seek happiness

will never find happiness

–M. K. Gandhi, from his poem, Violence

Phenomena XXIX: helping

Beyond the End


Keep your mouth closed

and embrace a simple life,

and you will live carefree

until the end of your days.

If you try to talk your way into a better life

there will be no end to your trouble

–from the Tao te Ching

–tr. by J. H. McDonald

I could embrace

a simpler life

might enjoy

being carefree


…there would be people

some like me

and some not

with lives filled

with much concern

too many troubles

and my heart

is filled with care

Until they have

better lives

I must try

to talk the world

into a better way


It’s no trouble

at all

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–March 30, 2008

We are all “working Americans”

I am growing tired of the television pundits referring to the backbone American families as “working class” rather than “middle class.”  I don’t know who came up with these distinctions, but they don’t seem to me to be accurate, and I think they work to divide this country in ways that it is not, economically speaking, divided.

If someone knows a (quote unquote) middle class family who is not working hard, please alert me.  I am not familiar with any such family.  We need to stop quaking to the Karl Rovian splinter politics — all middle class families are “working class” Americans because ALL of them work for their incomes.  It is time to remind everyone that the divide is not between some illusory group of “working class” Americans and “middle class” Americans, but, instead, between those whose incomes are derived from work and those whose incomes are derived from wealth.  Period.

Michelle Obama spoke movingly tonight about her family life; about growing up in a family whose father had a job with a public utility and whose mother stayed at home to raise the children.

McCain, POWs, & the Stab in the Back

I have never been tortured. But I have worked clinically with those who have, including U.S. POWs. I can tell you it breaks the mind and the body, the soul and the spirit, in a way that can never be forgotten.

Now John McCain cites his experience as a POW and torture victim as an anodyne to every mildly injurious political attack. While his painful experience as a POW matters in the history of the man, in our nation’s history, what matters now is that McCain has betrayed that experience, and the lives of thousands he could both know and not know. In doing so, he also betrayed the ideals of American fair-play and justice, going back to George Washington (who forbid his revolutionary army to engage in torture, even if the British did). As everyone should know, those ideals were not realized fully, and we are still fighting for them today. But McCain has trampled them in the mud.

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