November 24, 2008 archive

Docudharma Times Monday November 24

Give It away Give It Away

Give It Away Now

To Citi Bank    

Monday’s Headlines:

Immigrant tide may be turning

Father murdered, wife and daughter jailed: killers call the shots in Iraq’s justice system

Israeli neo-Nazi gang jailed

Impressionist villagers protest at industry plan

Dutch plan to weed out criminals

The general who holds Congo’s fate in his hands

Send the troops into Zimbabwe, says Kenya’s Raila Odinga

Huang Guangyu, China’s richest man, disappears amid corruption investigation

Tibetans back Dalai Lama’s ‘middle way,’ despite impatience

Chavez opponents make poll gains

U.S. Approves Plan to Help Citigroup Weather Losses


Published: November 23, 2008

Federal regulators approved a radical plan to stabilize Citigroup in an arrangement in which the government could soak up billions of dollars in losses at the struggling bank, the government announced late Sunday night.The complex plan calls for the government to back about $306 billion in loans and securities and directly invest about $20 billion in the company. The plan, emerging after a harrowing week in the financial markets, is the government’s third effort in three months to contain the deepening economic crisis and may set the precedent for other multibillion-dollar financial rescues.

Orange County Vietnamese American returns to her homeland

Her family had fled the country, but Tiffany Nguyen saw opportunity there for professional advancement — and an adventure.

By My-Thuan Tran

November 24, 2008

Reporting from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam — Tiffany Nguyen sauntered down Dong Khoi street, swatting mosquitoes in the sticky heat. Wearing 3-inch black heels, she plunged through a crush of motorbikes spewing smoke and blasting horns, dashing toward a nearby restaurant to meet a friend.

Nguyen, 28, grew up 7,800 miles from here in an Orange County suburb. But for the last year, she has worked along this boulevard known as the Fifth Avenue of Vietnam, where boutiques crowd against old Parisian hotels.For years entrepreneurs stayed away from Vietnam, a poor country with scant business prospects, where visas were hard to get.



Clinton’s potential pitfalls seen in FDR’s secretary of State

Like Cordell Hull, she could find herself marginalized because she hasn’t been close to the president she would serve. Her future ambitions could also complicate her job.

By Paul Richter

November 24, 2008

Reporting from Washington — Cordell Hull was a veteran lawmaker with a worldwide reputation when Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed him secretary of State in 1933, in part to win needed support from Hull’s army of Democratic admirers.

But the dignified Tennessean was never close to FDR. As time passed, he was “muscled out by others in the administration,” said Michael Hunt, a diplomatic historian at the University of North Carolina.

Barack Obama’s election as president has drawn other comparisons with Roosevelt’s, especially for the economic crisis he inherits. But the example of Hull, a marginal figure despite the fact that he served into the 1940s and later won the Nobel Peace Prize, may point to potential pitfalls for Hillary Rodham Clinton if she takes the top diplomatic post, as seems increasingly likely.

Clinton would come to the role with global star power, a first-name relationship with world leaders, and a long familiarity with foreign policy.

“Peoples’ Peace Treaty” – On This Day

November 24, 1970

14 American students met with Vietnamese in Hanoi to plan the “Peoples’ Peace Treaty” between the peoples of the United States, South Vietnam and North Vietnam.

It begins, “Be it known that the American people and the Vietnamese people are not enemies. The war is carried out in the names of the people of the United States and South Vietnam, but without our consent. It destroys the land and people of Vietnam. It drains America of its resources, its youth, and its honor.”

The treaty was ultimately endorsed by millions.


Even though I’ve been following the business pages and economic blogs pretty closely, transfixed by the kind of horror one gets watching a 47 car pileup in real time, no headlines since election night have depressed me more than those about plans to send 20,000 more troops to Afghanistan. It turns out the four combat brigades mentioned during the campaign-7000 troops-require support troops. Oh, and more air surveillance and support capacity. Who knew?

I just went back and reread Thomas Powers’ grim prediction, written during the last Democratic primaries in the Spring. I strongly encourage you to check it out, but here’s the money quote:

At an unmarked moment somewhere between the third and the sixth month a sea change occurs: Bush’s war becomes the new president’s war, and getting out means failure, means defeat, means rising opposition at home, means no second term. It’s not hard to see where this is going.

Okay, Obama doesn’t take office for 8 more weeks. Sure, he deserves a honeymoon. Lorry nose, he has the Biggest Economic Crisis Since The Great Depression ™ to deal with.

But what about us? We don’t have to wait 8 weeks to act.

Honeymoon? On this blog, chances are as good that Prop 8 made you involuntarily single than that you got married this month.

And what reason do we have to keep our mouths shut about how an out-of-control military budget and those annual “supplemental appropriations” for Iraq and Afghanistan left the budget deep in the red as the government starts trying to contain the meltdown?

Back to Thomas Powers. In the quote above, he says getting out of Iraq and Afghanistan “means rising opposition at home.” That’s our cue. We have to show, to demonstrate if you will, that not getting out of Iraq and Afghanistan will mean “rising opposition at home.” Big time.

I’m not here to debate tactics. If you feel comfortable calling your Congresscritter, do it. If you can give money to the splendid young men and women of Iraq Veterans Against the War, do it. If are moved to write a letter to the editor, do it. If there’s a protest coming up that you can take part in, do it. Personally, I recommend the Iraq Moratorium, a nation-wide, locally-based, bottom-up initiative on the Third Friday of every month.

Crossposted at Daily Kos.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

State of the Onion XIII

Art Link


On the Borderlands

The land

on the border

is fertile

The people

are kind



for the most part

until of course

the patrol comes by

to force everyone

to move to one side

or the other

That causes

great turmoil

on the borderlands

so sometimes

we move

the border

when they aren’t looking

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–March 3, 2006

Late Night Karaoke

Never Stop Talking

Obama’s jobs plan: A band-aid for an economic catastrophe

Original article, by Patrick Martin, via World Socialist Web Site:

The economic plan announced Saturday by President-Elect Barack Obama, with the goal of “saving or creating” 2.5 million jobs in 2009 and 2010, is a measure that has already been outstripped by events. The deepening crisis of American and world capitalism could destroy that many US jobs in the next six to nine months alone.

Untapped Resources

What American generation had the most resources?

Did my experience of discovering my mother was a sociopath lead me to the discovery that American leaders are also sociopathic?

Can you as an American throw a rock from one pharmacy to the next?

Are you “on” something?  Do you absolutely need to be “on” something?


When future historioranters analyze the data from this past election, at least one thing will be abundantly clear: of all the nations in Africa, Kenya played the largest role in America’s 2008 electoral process.  It hadn’t been expected to be so – the odds were on perennial favorites like Egypt, South Africa, the still un-interdicted Sudanese Genocide, or that nutjob in Zimbabwe – but there Kenya was, looming like Kilimanjaro over the Serengeti.  And I mean over all the Serengeti: not only does the President-Elect have a close connection with the nation – Sarah Palin’s Witch Doctor is Kenyan by birth.

Join me, if you will, in the Cave of the Moonbat, where tonight we’ll contemplate a land that’s seen everything from the Dawn of Humanity to becostumed imperialists to a sad-but-all-too-typical history of governance since the Era of Decolonization.  Maybe along the way, we’ll come to know a little more about the most famous Kenyan-American of all – a guy who even now seems to be operating by that old African proverb, “Just because he harmed your goat, do not go out and kill his bull.”  

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