February 6, 2009 archive

The Rise and Fall of the Communist International

Original article, by Ted Grant (originally written June 1943), via Socialist Appeal (UK):

The Third International has been officially buried. In the most undignified and contemptible fashion it would be possible to conceive, it has passed off the stage of history. Hurriedly and without consultation with all the adhering parties, not to speak of the rank and file throughout the world, without any democratic discussion and decision, as the result of the pressure of American imperialism, Stalin has perfidiously abandoned the Comintern.


As I am wont to do on Fridays, I post these to help escape the doldrums of daily humdrum.

Enjoy, & let your mind wander.



Four at Four

  1. The Hill reports Vice President Biden douses Democrats with reality. “Biden, in an overly subdued manner, repeatedly told Democrats that the challenges they face as members of Congress – as a party and as leaders of the country – are ‘daunting.'”

    “There has never been the constellation of crises we face right now,” Biden said. “And we have no historical precedent to look back on, other than our grit. Our determination.”

    … Recounting a conversation he had with Obama in the Oval Office earlier in the week regarding the economic stimulus bill and other matters, Biden said the two came to the realization that: “If we do everything right… there’s still a 30 percent chance we’re going to get it wrong.

    Biden said the doom-and-gloom manner in which he and the president have been speaking – and on a morning where the government reported a loss of an additional 598,000 jobs – was “not hyperbole.”

    But “it’s not that things are so bad now,” Biden said, “it’s what happens if we miss.”

    Meanwhile, the Labor Department reported 598,000 jobs were lost in the U.S. in January, pushing the unemployment rate to 7.6 the highest level in more than 16 years. According to the Washington Post, making it the largest one-month job loss since December 1974. The U6, a broader measure of unemployment, is up to 13.9% unemployed.

Four at Four continues with Obama’s continues Bush’s faith based policies, A.Q. Khan is released from house arrest, Cole bombing trial at Guant√°namo is halted, and algae hope for coral reefs.

Couples ask Supreme Court: ‘Don’t divorce us’

California’s Courage Campaign, which describes itself as the online organizing hub for nearly 400,000 progressive Californians, has produced this video, asking viewers to sign a petition to the State Supreme Court asking that 18,000 same sex marriages already performed in California be allowed to stand, and that Proposition 8, banning gay marriage, be overturned.

In the other corner: Kenneth Starr.  It’s a powerful video that speaks for itself, so I will stop typing:

“Fidelity”: Don’t Divorce… from Courage Campaign on Vimeo.

In case you missed OPOL….

…last Friday ON WWL Radio, he was awesome. He starts at about the halfway point.

I’m still working out technical difficulties, so the show isn’t all that “polished” yet. (My audio files went berserk on me…)

But you can always join us tonight for our next show, too.

Linky goodness below!

Commander in Chief Attacks Republiban Insurgents

Damn he is good! I particularly like the part about cable chatter! And this “Doh!” moment was priceless…

“So then you get the argument, well, this is not a stimulus bill, this is a spending bill. What do you think a stimulus is? That’s the whole point. No, seriously. That’s the point.”

If only the Congressional Dems could emulate him and be actually effective in fighting the Republibans. As the insurgents Republibans use their guerrilla ambush and delay tactics, every hour of delay equals more jobs lost, and our economy getting sucked down a spiral of unemployment…leading to less consumer spending…leading to more job losses…

600,000 jobs gone in one month. And the states are already running out of unemployment benefit funds.

Seeking Forgiveness for His Racism {UpDated with 2nd Video}

“The evil of bigotry gives way to the power of redemption!”

Man Asks Entire Town for Forgiveness for Racism

2.06.09: 48 Years Ago, He Attacked Future Rep. John Lewis; Now the Two Hug

Elwin Wilson and John Lewis

Nearly half a century ago, in a very different America, Elwin Wilson and John Lewis met under a veil of violence and race-inspired hate. The men had not seen each other again until Tuesday when, with “Good Morning America’s” help, Wilson approached Lewis again — this time offering an apology and a chance to relieve a burden he’d carried for more than four decades.

Want a Tool Kit?


This nifty Tool Kit was sent out today in an e-mail, both by David Swanson, and After Downing Street.  Grab it — use it!!

Aw, the mounting pressure — love it, love it!

Thinking CAP? Curse Jar? Let X decide …

The other day, the Environmental Defense Action Fund opened voting for ‘the people’s choice’ as to the best 30-second video to explain how a Cap & Trade program to control carbon dioxide would help cut the nation’s dependence on oil. Putting aside questions as to Environmental Defense’s devotion to a CAP uber all, the best video seemed clear:  The Thinking Cap.   This choice seemed clear, evidently, to many as this video was the runaway victor for EDAF’s $1000 “People’s Choice” award.  (The Climate Activists’ Choice Award.) But the experts, the experts had a different perspective.  They went with the foul-language oriented Cursing Cap.

Will Obama Act to End Darfur Tragedy?

I wanted to take a couple of minutes to share an op-ed that I co-aurthored with my friend Howard Salter.

It ran in the Baltimore Sun today (link here) and suggests that the Obama administration use the pending ICC arrest warrant of Omar al-Bashir to push for international action to end the killing in Darfur.

We note that:

The expected warrant also opens a door for Mr. Obama and his talented foreign policy team. They can leverage the arrest warrant to work with influential partners across the globe to stop the killing and solidify a concrete peace agreement. By doing so, Mr. Obama would address a serious human rights crisis at the dawn of his presidency while also sending a clear signal that the U.S. is ready to once again lead by example.

and remind readers of the failure of the last administration:

Open Thread


Ramble On Thread.

Docudharma Times Friday February 6

How Stupid

Can You Be Gate

See Republican Party  

Friday’s Headlines:

Can BofA save itself?

French postman delivers far left message

At last, cinema discovers a new baddie – the banker

Rise of the moderates

Iraq’s voters show faith in Maliki regime

Zimbabwe faces 55,000 more cholera cases as disease moves from town to countryside

Sudan expels a Canadian contributor to the Monitor

Japanese businessman Kazutsugi Nami arrested for £1bn fraud

Toyota triples year loss forecast

In a Mexico state, openness is the new order in the courts

Bipartisan Push to Trim Size of Stimulus Plan


Published: February 5, 2009

WASHINGTON – A bipartisan group of senators worked furiously in backroom negotiations on Thursday to cut the cost of the more than $920 billion economic stimulus plan. Senate Democratic leaders said they would await the outcome of those talks before calling for a final vote on the measure, perhaps on Friday.

Members of the bipartisan group, led by Senators Ben Nelson, Democrat of Nebraska, and Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, said they wanted to trim provisions that would not quickly create jobs or encourage spending by consumers and businesses. They spent much of the day scrutinizing the 736-page bill and wrangling over what to cut.

Japan’s Big-Works Stimulus Is Lesson for U.S.


Published: February 5, 2009

HAMADA, Japan – The Hamada Marine Bridge soars majestically over this small fishing harbor, so much larger than the squid boats anchored below that it seems out of place.

And it is not just the bridge. Two decades of generous public works spending have showered this city of 61,000 mostly graying residents with a highway, a two-lane bypass, a university, a prison, a children’s art museum, the Sun Village Hamada sports center, a bright red welcome center, a ski resort and an aquarium featuring three ring-blowing Beluga whales.



Suspect Peanuts Sent to Schools

Despite Salmonella, Firm Sold to USDA

By Lyndsey Layton

Washington Post Staff Writer

Friday, February 6, 2009; Page A01

Peanut Corporation of America sold 32 truckloads of roasted peanuts and peanut butter to the federal government for a free-lunch program for poor children even as the company’s internal tests showed that its products were contaminated with salmonella bacteria.

Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture abruptly suspended its contract with the company, which is at the center of an outbreak of salmonella illness that has killed eight people, sickened 575 and triggered one of the largest food recalls in U.S. history.

Load more