November 5, 2009 archive

Afternoon Edition

Afternoon Edition is an Open Thread

Now with U.S. News.  48 Story Final.

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 UN in Afghanistan to evacuate 600 foreign staff

by Waheedullah Massoud, AFP

1 hr 31 mins ago

KABUL (AFP) – The United Nations announced Thursday it will evacuate more than half its international staff based in Afghanistan after a deadly Taliban attack on a guesthouse for UN workers.

But the UN said it had no intention of abandoning Afghanistan, where 100,000 US-led foreign troops are battling a bloody insurgency eight years after the extremist Taliban regime was driven from power.

About 600 expatriate staff, from a total of 1,100 foreigners, will be temporarily relocated either within Afghanistan or abroad, UN spokesman Dan McNorton told AFP.

CIA boiling people alive in Uzbekistan to manufacture false confessions

Ever seen a guy who was boiled alive?   No?   Well, now you can say you have:

This is a guy that the Uzbeks tortured to death by boiling him alive.   This is what the CIA is hiring the Uzbeks to do to people, in order to extract false, manufactured “confessions” out of them.

What do these confessions say?   Why they say the following:

They were being told to confess to membership of al-Qaeda …

They were told to confess that they’d been in training camps in Afghanistan …

And they were told to confess that they had met Osama bin Laden in person.

How conveeenient!    So let’s get this straight, follow along, please:   The United States’ CIA grabbed people off the streets from all around the world, shipped them to Uzbekistan, and outsourced the torture to the real pros.    The CIA decided (as did the Bush administration) that having someone else do this made it “legal”.    They typed up “confessions” of what they wanted these poor saps to “confess” to, then tortured them by boiling them alive, raping them with broken bottles, and torturing their children in front of them, until the people would sign these confessions.    Said “confessions” were then turned over to the proper government authorities who could then point to the “confessions” as “evidence” to justify the military presence, and actions, in the bogus “WAR ON TERROR”.  

Tell Congress to PASS the Weiner Amendment to H.R. 3200!

According to a post on Pennsylvania blog, House speaker Nancy Pelosi will allow a mere twenty minutes of debate on single-payer, albeit indirectly.

The debate will actually be on an amendment put forth by Anthony Weiner, Democrat of New York’s 9th District, which would effectively transform the corporate giveaway that is HR 3200 into something very close to the single-payer form offered by Dennis Kucinich and John Conyers’s HR 676.  According to David Swanson, the debate on the Weiner amendment is being used as cover for dropping Kucinich’s amendment, which would allow states to create their own single-payer health insurance systems.

This is probably our last, best chance to improve what is shaping up to be a disastrously bad bill that will force Americans into buying unaffordable insurance.  Click on the House Telephone Directory link, call as many representatives as you can, and demand that they pass the Weiner amendment.  This may be our only shot at getting something that will work for all Americans, instead of simply further enriching Big Insurance.

Open Thread!

Hey There Maniacs!

It occurred to me that this 1 PM ET slot might be a good place for a daily Open Thread to discus the events of the morning, trends you see developing and general Hijinks and Shenanigans! Iow….Open threadiness!


What do you think, will you support our old and dear friend Open thread? Or will you cast it into the gutter like yesterdays newspapers…when we still had newspapers and did silly things like cast them into the gutter?

You can vote by commenting!

And …er …voting!

Legislative Worrywarts Need Not Apply

Two days have passed since the 2009 election cycle ended and the second-guessing and arm-chair quarterbacking has quite predictably arrived.  Everyone has a theory or a unique explanation and each is in the camp of either imminent demise or nonchalant shrugs.  I suppose I lean much more to the latter than to the former.  I have no alarmist, chilling words of caution to impart to any Democratic candidate up for re-election or election in a year’s time.  When some are questioning whether we should let up on the gas pedal, I advocate strongly for pressing down firmly and keeping it there.  We have a right to push our agenda just as strongly as Republicans pushed theirs when they were the majority, and skittish popular opinion will always exist in times where discomfort reigns and its end is not clearly visible.  That’s how humans are, particularly when they have been led to believe that good times are a birthright.  

Remember, Remember


Remember, remember the fifth of November,

   The gunpowder treason and plot,

   I know of no reason

   Why the gunpowder treason

   Should ever be forgot.

   Fawkes at midnight, and by torchlight there was found

   With long matches and devices, underground

   O England praise the name of God

   That kept thee from this heavy rod!

   But though this demon e’er be gone,

   his evil now be ours upon!

Disastrous, Catastrophic, Murderous, Deceptive, Illegal, & Criminal

Daniel Ellsberg on the course the US Government is currently pursuing in Afghanistan.

Internet Take Down



Docudharma Times Thursday November 5

Thursday’s Headlines:

Hundreds of U.N. staffers temporarily leaving Afghanistan

Italian court finds CIA agents guilty of kidnapping terrorism suspect

Energized G.O.P. Looking to Avoid an Intraparty Feud

High court weighs immunity afforded to prosecutors

Iran’s reformists use key anniversary to defy regime

Israeli commandos seize ship ‘carrying arms to Hezbollah’

Patrick Cockburn: Deaths bring whole Afghan strategy into question

Thaksin Shinawatra appointed economic advisor to Cambodia

French Europe minister Pierre Lellouche labels David Cameron’s EU plans ‘autistic’

General Motors plans huge job cuts at European unit Opel

Did Honduras deal weaken Zelaya?

Muse in the Morning

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Muse in the Morning

Starburst Memories:

(Click on image for larger view)

The muses are ancient.  The inspirations for our stories were said to be born from them.  Muses of song and dance, or poetry and prose, of comedy and tragedy, of the inward and the outward.  In one version they are Calliope, Euterpe and Terpsichore, Erato and Clio, Thalia and Melpomene, Polyhymnia and Urania.

It has also been traditional to name a tenth muse.  Plato declared Sappho to be the tenth muse, the muse of women poets.  Others have been suggested throughout the centuries.  I don’t have a name for one, but I do think there should be a muse for the graphical arts.  And maybe there should be many more.

I know you have talent.  What sometimes is forgotten is that being practical is a talent.  I have a paucity for that sort of talent in many situations, though it turns out that I’m a pretty darn good cook.  🙂  

Let your talent bloom.  You can share it here.  Encourage others to let it bloom inside them as well.

Won’t you share your words or art, your sounds or visions, your thoughts scientific or philosophic, the comedy or tragedy of your days, the stories of doing and making?  And be excellent to one another!

Bring Out Your Planks!

In working on the Planet Versus profit project we are attempting to build a populist structure to channel the energy for change that is beginning to make itself felt here on what we like to call The Planet Earth.

As a carpenter, I can tell you that there is virtually no structure that can be built without a platform!

Here is a start, add your edits and ideas and additional planks in the comments!

From Wikipedia

Just substitute movement for party and this is what we are talking about.

A party (movement) platform, also known as a manifesto, is a list of the actions which a political party (movement) supports in order to appeal to the general public for the purpose of having said party’s (movement’s) candidates voted into office. This often takes the form of a list of support for, or opposition to, controversial topics. Individual topics are often called planks of the platform.

Iow, a platform is a quick and easy political hook. People can see what you stand for and then investigate further or join right in. Though platforms, and especially the planks of the platform.

Afghanistan and Steady Presidential Nerves


Quite possibly the best thing happening with Afghanistan right now is President Obama’s steady nerves and careful deliberation on what is the best and correct course of action for America to take.

Advocates of sending more troops to Afghanistan have been searching for a winning rationale to sell an escalation to the public. Despite public opinion polls saying support for the war is disappearing, more U.S. troops for Afghanistan seemed like a foregone conclusion.

Up until yesterday when five British troops were killed by an Afghan policeman, one of the more persuasive arguments has been that the West needs to train more Afghan soldiers so the Afghans can take charge of their country’s own security.

Now with five soldiers dead, The Guardian reports that commanders in Afghanistan fear Taliban infiltration as troops hunt for the assassin.

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