November 20, 2008 archive

The Massacre For Which Thanksgiving Is Named

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“In a little more than one hour, five or six hundred of these barbarians

were dismissed from a world that was burdened with them.”

“It may be demanded…Should not Christians have more mercy and

compassion? But…sometimes the Scripture declareth women and children must perish with their parents…. We had sufficient light from the word of God for our proceedings.”

-Puritan divine Cotton Mather, Magnalia Christi Americana

Images Of Life

On Tuesday LIFE Magazine released two million photos from the 1750s to today, from the LIFE magazine archives. Most of them have never before been seen by the public, apparently never published.

From the announcement on GoogleBlog Tuesday of the release:

The Zapruder film of the Kennedy assassination; The Mansell Collection from London; Dahlstrom glass plates of New York and environs from the 1880s; and the entire works left to the collection from LIFE photographers Alfred Eisenstaedt, Gjon Mili, and Nina Leen. These are just some of the things you’ll see in Google Image Search today.

We’re excited to announce the availability of never-before-seen images from the LIFE photo archive. This effort to bring offline images online was inspired by our mission to organize all the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. This collection of newly-digitized images includes photos and etchings produced and owned by LIFE dating all the way back to the 1750s.

Only a very small percentage of these images have ever been published. The rest have been sitting in dusty archives in the form of negatives, slides, glass plates, etchings, and prints. We’re digitizing them so that everyone can easily experience these fascinating moments in time. Today about 20 percent of the collection is online; during the next few months, we will be adding the entire LIFE archive – about 10 million photos.

Once you are in the archive, you’ll also notice that you can access a rich full-size, full-screen version of each image simply by clicking on the picture itself in the landing page. If you decide you really like one of these images, high-quality framed prints can be purchased from LIFE at the click of a button.

The full Google LIFE photo archive is here:

You can also search them directly on Just add “source:life” to any Google image search and search only the LIFE photo archive. For example: computer source:life

Four at Four

  1. The LA Times reports Antiwar groups fear Barack Obama may create hawkish Cabinet. Activists are uneasy that many “short-list candidates for top security posts backed the decision to go to war.”

    “Obama ran his campaign around the idea the war was not legitimate, but it sends a very different message when you bring in people who supported the war from the beginning,” said Kelly Dougherty, executive director of the 54-chapter Iraq Veterans Against the War.

    The activists — key members of the coalition that propelled Obama to the White House — fear he is drifting from the antiwar moorings of his once-longshot presidential candidacy. Obama has eased the rigid timetable he had set for withdrawing troops from Iraq, and he appears to be leaning toward the center in his candidates to fill key national security posts.

    Obama expects criticism of his appointees he is considering for his national security team, including hawks like Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY), Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), and Richard Lugar (R-IN). Vice President-elect Joe Biden also supported the 2002 Iraq war resolution.

    Kevin Martin, executive director of the group Peace Action, said that although Obama had campaigned as an agent of change, the president-elect is “a fairly centrist guy” who appears to be choosing from the Democratic foreign policy establishment — “and nobody from outside it.”

    “So, in the short term, we’re going to be disappointed,” he said. “They may turn out to be all pro-war, or at least people who were pro-war in the beginning.” …

    “There’s so much Obama hero worship, we’re having to walk this line where we can’t directly criticize him,” he said.

    I think it is important to remember that Obama said: “I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars.” So my question is and has been — when are wars smart?

Four at Four continues with the six men ordered released from Guantánamo, a probe finds that, shock, the CIA lies to Congress, and the woolly mammoth genome.

The War On The Worker

Republicans are, apparently, an unremitting party of war. Now that they have oh so deservedly lost the power to take America to war in foreign climes, they have turned their attention back to their time honored historical foe, the American worker. Now that the campaign is over, they have declared war on Joe the Plumber, instead of just exploiting him for political purposes. Fortunately for everyone who likes the convenience of not having to go he nearest stream to get water, the plumbing industry has not been run into the ground by the stupid, arrogant, incompetent “captains of industry” like those in the American auto industry that have blindly and blithely run their industry into a ditch. While insisting on polluting the atmosphere and poisoning the planet for profit.

So….war against the autoworker is the marching order of the day. Bailout the white collars to the tune of 700 billion, while insisting that the auto industry be forced into bankruptcy. WHY should the auto industry be forced into bankruptcy? So the auto industry can “renegotiate” (translation, renege on) their union contracts. WHY do they want to renege on their union contracts? Because obviously, HA!, if the evile American worker didn’t insist on making a decent wage and would consent to live in poverty while working twelve hours a day until their bodies broke down and you could just fire them instead of giving them health care, the American auto industry would be a thriving beacon of profit generation!!!

How dare the American worker put their welfare over the welfare of the Corporation! Why, if it wasn’t for having to PAY workers, just THINK how much profit we could make!!! Too bad we haven’t yet (just you wait!) figured out how to actually produce goods without workers! Then the whole world could be overseers middle managers and executives!!! There IS no symbiosis between labor, management and capital, there simply cannot be. We cannot find a way to run industry for the Greater Good of All, then how would we be….superior, and get ….more? We must DEFEAT the Workers and their unions, not cooperate with them. No, it MUST be WAR!


APA Meeting Mulls Over Interrogation Policy Changes

The American Psychological Association’s Presidential Advisory Group on the Implementation of the Petition Resolution met at APA offices in Washington, D.C. last weekend. The “Petition Resolution” refers to the stunning victory of a referendum vote by APA membership last summer that officially changed that organization’s policy, banning members from participating in interrogations or other activities at sites that are in violation of international or domestic law. (Read the Referendum’s full text here.) The victory of the resolution won major media attention.

Previously, while passing formal resolutions against torture and psychologist participation in torture, APA had championed the use of military (and CIA) psychologists at national security sites where interrogations took place. While arguing that psychologists kept interrogations safe, an avalanche of revelations showed that, on the contrary, some psychologists had been intimately involved in the abuse

The REAL Bush Doctrine

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Most folks when asked to define the Bush Doctrine, other than stealing elections, would point to a document called the National Security Strategy of the United States published in September 2002, which states among other things:

To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively in exercising our inherent right of self-defense.

Preemptive war. The idea if the United States perceives a threat outside of our borders, even a 1% chance of danger against American interests, then the U.S. has the right to “defend” itself preemptively.

But I would argue historians will define the Bush Doctrine as something else. Something much more dangerous, reckless and un-American. The Unitary Executive.

Open Thread


Come on baby, light my thread.

Once Again America, You Failed and Are Failing!!!

Not to long ago and most certainly not a ‘once upon a time’, though the response by the country would leave one to think some were telling fairy tales because the rest paid little attention, a group of soldiers were returning from an occupation of a destroyed small country a half a world away.

As we returned many started developing a wide variety of ailments, physical and mental, well maybe a few of the rest were listening about the mental issues for they were telling my brothers it was all in their heads.

Docudharma Times Thursday November 20

Clueless: See America Automotive Executives  

Thursday’s Headlines:

Within minutes of attacking blaze, fire crew was surrounded

Fatal grenade attack on Thai anti-government protestors

Japanese Are Irked by U.S. Interest in Pitcher

Politkovskaya supporters condemn secret trial

Gas plant to overshadow Greek temples

Somali pirates seize ninth vessel in 12 days

Talking in secret in Zimbabwe, with a ‘Mugabe man’ who isn’t really

Two Iraqis face trial over murder of Margaret Hassan, British aid worker

Al Qaeda No. 2 insults Obama with racial slur in new video

Bush set to relax rules protecting species

Interior Department rushed to finish new regulation despite objections

Associated Press

WASHINGTON – Animals and plants in danger of becoming extinct could lose the protection of government experts who make sure that dams, highways and other projects don’t pose a threat, under a regulation the Bush administration is set to put in place before President-elect Obama can reverse them.

The rules must be published Friday to take effect before Obama is sworn in Jan. 20. Otherwise, he can undo them with the stroke of a pen.

The Interior Department rushed to complete the rules in three months over the objections of lawmakers and environmentalists who argued that they would weaken how a landmark conservation law is applied.

Shares Near 6-Year Low, With More Losses Feared


Published: November 19, 2008

As the stock market tumbled to its lowest level in nearly six years on Wednesday, Wall Street traders and many ordinary Americans were asking the same question: Where, oh where is the bottom?

After a yearlong slide in stocks and a giant bank rescue from Washington, even some pessimists had hoped that the worst might be over. But now, after the Dow Jones industrial average fell below 8,000 on Wednesday, the financial crisis and the bear market it spawned seem to be taking a new, painful turn.

Once again, investors’ confidence in the nation’s financial industry is draining away

Robert Fisk: Once more fear stalks the streets of Kandahar

Five years after his last visit, our correspondent finds the Taliban back in charge of their spiritual home – and girls attacked with acid simply for attending school

Thursday, 20 November 2008

There is a little girl in the Meir Wais hospital with livid scars and dead skin across her face, an obscene map of brown and pink tissue. Then there is another girl, a beautiful child, Khorea Horay, grimacing in pain, her leg amputated, her life destroyed after her foot was torn to pieces. In another ward, two girls lie on their backs, a tent above their limbs. One has lost an arm, another – a 16-year-old – a leg.

Then there is the grim young man with the beard, also in the darkest pain, who looks at me with suspicion and puzzlement. He has a bullet wound in the abdomen, a great incision sutured up after the doctors found it infected. Two other young men, also bearded, cowled in brown “patu” shawls, sit beside this suffering warrior. They, too, stare at me as if I am a visitor from Mars. Perhaps that’s what I am in Kandahar. Better to be a Martian than a Westerner in a city which in all but name has fallen to the Taliban.



Auto Execs Fly Corporate Jets to D.C., Tin Cups in Hand

Washington Sketch

By Dana Milbank

Thursday, November 20, 2008; Page A03

There are 24 daily nonstop flights from Detroit to the Washington area. Richard Wagoner, Alan Mulally and Robert Nardelli probably should have taken one of them.

Instead, the chief executives of the Big Three automakers opted to fly their company jets to the capital for their hearings this week before the Senate and House — an ill-timed display of corporate excess for a trio of executives begging for an additional $25 billion from the public trough this week.

Endangered Species Act may become extinct tomorrow

Texas Chainsaw DeciderWhile the Bush administration is certainly in its last throes, their officials still have a significant amount of damage left to inflict on our country.

Furthering the Republicans war against science, the Bush administration is near finalizing a regulatory overhaul of the Endangered Species Act that will fundamentally change the way threatened plants and animals have been protected in the U.S. since December 1973.

The Bush administration wants to make it easier for drilling, mining and major construction projects to go ahead without a full scientific assessment,” BBC news reports. The changes will effect any project a federal agency would fund, build, or authorize that might potentially impact an endangered plant or animal.

For nearly 35 years, “the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service or the National Marine Fisheries Service have reviewed any federal plans that could potentially protect endangered animals or plants. Under the administration’s proposed rule, these independent scientific reviews would no longer be required if the agency in question determined that its activities would not hurt the imperiled species,” the Washington Post reports.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

State of the Onion XI

Art Link


Personal View

Born in the wrong body?

Bunch of crap

in my opinion

The one I have

is the only body

I was given

Nobody else has

the one I was

supposed to have

Born in the wrong culture


in the wrong time period

most likely

on the wrong planet

quite possibly

But it’s not like

I had a choice

in the matter

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–February 3, 2006

Christmas Lights … scrooge or savior? (Revisited 2) …

Do you love those displays of Christmas (or Hannukah or Kwanza or …) lights?  Are you awed by those so impassioned that they string up 1000s of lights in awesome displays worthy of a city center? I once did, pausing on cold winter nights, white clouds issuing from my mouth, enjoying being in the glow of beautiful displays.  And, in a way, I was inspired that they would spend $1000s (or $10,000s) on displays and the electricity to power them so that others could enjoy the sight on those cold winter nights.  

But … no longer … not for awhile. Far too often nowadays, my winter evenings I can wear short sleeve shirts rather than bulky coats and gloves. And, energy is no longer a question simply of money. I’ve reached the point of feeling like a Scrooge; feeling outrage over the tons of C02 going into the atmosphere via neighbors’ 10,000 light displays rather than feeling ‘joyous’.

But, a compromise does exist; a path to cut sharply those CO2 emissions while still putting out those lights:  LED lights.  But, far too many are unwilling to spend the money upfront to cut their electricial use, reduce their pollution, and — actually — save quite a lot of money.

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