December 7, 2010 archive

The Shabbes Goy

In 2007 after reading essays by DavidSeth and TiaRachel I was prompted to share this little tale my Dad wrote & had published on-line the previous December. The link from his e-mail no longer worked, so I went on a search…tried ‘teh googel’. Imagine my surprise to find page after page of sites with his story. I already had permission from him to do anything I wanted with it, so I thought Pearl Harbor Day & Hanukkah would be the perfect time to share it.

This has become an annual tradition.

My Dad is a Great Guy, his experiences varied and many… in a ‘Big Fish’ kind of way. He served in WWII and later became the fencing coach of Columbia University in the 1940’s-50s and was an early advocate of civil rights in sports (see 1948), eventually retiring to California.


Payback: Bank That Froze WikiLeaks Funds Hacked

Posted to Youtube October 29, 2010 by user opPayback

Hackers take down website of bank that froze WikiLeaks funds

By Daniel Tencer, RawStory

Monday, December 6th, 2010

A group of Internet activists calling themselves Operation Payback have taken credit for shutting down the website of a bank that earlier Monday froze funds belonging to WikiLeaks.

Announcing its successful hack on a Twitter account, the group declared, “We will fire at anyone that tries to censor WikiLeaks.”

Earlier in the day, Swiss bank PostFinance issued a statement announcing that it had frozen 31,000 euro ($41,000 US) in an account set up as a legal defense fund for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

The bank said it had frozen the account because, in opening it, Assange had claimed residency in Geneva.

“Assange cannot provide proof of residence in Switzerland and thus does not meet the criteria for a customer relationship with PostFinance,” the bank said.

As of Monday evening, the PostFinance website was unavailable.

Operation Payback also promised a hack attack on PayPal, the online payment service that last week cut off WikiLeaks, denying the group a major tool for collecting donations from supporters.

With the financial noose tightening around WikiLeaks even as a legal one tightens around its founder’s neck, Operation Payback has effectively declared war on the organizations working to hobble WikiLeaks.

“In these modern times, Internet access is fast becoming a basic human right,” the group says in a video posted to YouTube. “Just like any other basic human right, we believe it is wrong to infringe upon it.”

Open Gleason


Sen. Mike Enzi’s ‘Pack of Lies’ vs. 9/11 Victims

The best people America has to offer have been getting sick and dying from their heroic efforts at the World Trad Center. As you can see from this recent Daily News front page, Mike Enzi is not the only Republican to tell the 9/11 first responders and heroes to drop dead.

The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act that provides $3.2 billion for long-term health care for rescue and construction workers at Ground Zero, plus another $4.2 billion in compensation for others who were exposed to airborne toxins will be out of time once the Republicans control the House.

These heroes who answered the call for help on September 11, 2001 and the horrible weeks that followed have been pushing hard for justice before it is too late. After a barrage of local media coverage, multiple visits to Washington from Ground Zero worker, victim’s family members pleading with the Senate and a huge bipartisan effort from tri-state politicians, one Republican has signed on. The rest have voices disagreement with Sens. Schumer and Gillibrand’s method of financing healthcare for heroes. The cloture count is now at 59 and their big day in the Senate is tomorrow.  

Now that there is some hope for a bill named after an NYPD detective who died at age 34 of a respiratory disease attributed to participation in the rescue and recovery operations at the World Trade Center, Mike Enzi is working hard to stop the bill from going forward. His reasoning is that the nation has already given enough.

WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange Arrested In London

julianassange3 WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange arrested in LondonStephen Webster writes this morning at RawStory that Wikileaks’ founder Julian Assange has been arrested Tuesday morning by London Metropolitan police on a warrant out of Sweden:

The Guardian reports on a statement from Metropolitan police that “Assange, 39, was arrested on a European Arrest Warrant by appointment at a London police station at 9.30 a.m.

He is accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation and one count of rape, all alleged to have been committed in August 2010.”

Assange’s attorney says they plan to fight extradition to Sweden. A full extradition hearing is expected sometime in the next 21 days. If he is successfully taken to Sweden, the Guardian noted, he could also be legally vulnerable to extradition requests from other countries as well.

His attorneys were reportedly negotiating a sum for bail, but his freedom was not certain as Swedish rape laws make bail more difficult to obtain when the charge is rape.

Assange has reportedly recorded a video statement, set to be published online later Tuesday.

“If Not Us, Who?” – Redefining Power

Every time a deluded, Rush-parrot neo-con spouts the mantra, I want to go head-spinner like Linda Blair.

It goes like this, “Do you really want a cradle-to-grave nanny state like country x or y, while country z or z-scarier becomes the world’s new Super Power?”

The grim apocalyptic horns bast dramatically, followed by an admonition that technology is a blessing, and that none of the Social Democracies could have survived but by the grace of our boot straps.

Then they tell us there is no Garden of Eden, and to click our heels and repeat, “Capitalism is good. Corporatism is good. Modern living is here to stay!”

Besides the unbearably mixed metaphor and the horribly unbelievable plot line, history tells us this movie has failed over and over and over at the box office.

Never do they use facts to support the shop-worn lines, never do they consider people as a source of Power. Its always, serve the known masters, the devil you know is far better than the devil you don’t know. “If you kill the Masters, the next Master you are sold to could be MUCH, MUCH worse!” They always paint people with any amount of freedom as lazy, worthless, powerless and in grave danger from themselves. They never want us to know how much happier they are.

“There could be a Power Vacuum, and if not us WHO?” They say.

Oh shut the fuck up already. We know what your lies are. We know you want us to think it is the Elites keeping us safe from “ourselves” or scary “outsiders.”



The Fallacy of Privileged Activism

I think what concerns me most about American society these days is how so many wish to commodify everything, especially other people.  The subject has weighed heavily upon me recently because I’m going to get married fairly soon.  I’ve been reflecting back upon the history of those I’ve dated as a means of judging larger trends in my development.  There were a few instances where I was valued more for my potential net worth than for my heart.  It is one thing to see the possibility of personal growth in a partner, but it’s another thing altogether to see them as a stock portfolio which has yet to mature.  People are not savings bonds or bank accounts.  The dreams of some involve the acquisition of funds, and to them, marriage is the perfect merger between conglomerates.  “Our” dreams are, in fact, “my” dreams with your financial assistance.  Woe be unto those whose economic star does not rise.    

Pretty Much Over: Dear Senator Dick (the one from Illinois)

It’s over for me, not you, Senator Dick.  I am sure your star will rise when you join one of the neoliberal think tanks or perhaps work for Peter Peterson.  Surely you will be paid for your latest statement and the fact that you have shamed the old ladies in the United States for their selfish nature and crybaby attitude:


If we want to come up with something bipartisan to work on together, Social Security is a good candidate.

Not wars, not income disparity, not people out of work, unable to feed their children, keep a roof over their heads – not sending jobs anywhere but here.  But SS, and older women will be most impacted by that and those that depend on them.


Me, I’m looking around for new structures.  Old ladies should band together, perhaps into loose communes, living together, gardening together for food, keeping each other strong physically and mentally.  Also, I will be looking for underground medical personnel who believe in euthanasia rather than a slow, painful death for an old person without any social net.  You will be fine, of course, Senator Dick.  And – by the way – I know you don’t read these letters.  They are actually for my mental health.

Little old ladies will be fine if we stick together.  After all, there are children and grandchildren to help, animals and gardens to tend to.   Although we will be considered a drain – I suppose that is inevitable as the country swirls into soft violence at first – then a full throttle fall from grace (God has shed his grace on us but we have turned it over to the monied elites.)

Firearms are problematic.  There will be young children, adolescents in these communal homes.  Children come first.  We have to be healthy for them and the houses must be safe.    Police will be cut and desperate people will be roaming about.  Little old ladies are an easy target.  It is a melancholy thought, I agree but we have many people depending on us.  And we cannot depend on anyone but ourselves.  We are resiliant, smart and tough and although our bodies are aging, we can be wily and nimble together.  It may be we must have besides seamstresses, cooks, gardeners, knitters (bitter or not), retired military and policewomen.  Also, we must learn how to hide our meager savings – and how to live frugally.  Normally, that is not a problem for my generation but I hope to entice some Boomers into our living arrangements.  They must be as scared as we are.

My first order of business is to put my older animals to sleep.  It is the best gift I can give them now.  I can’t afford vet bills and won’t send them to shelters to die.  I have the money now and it must be done.

Second order – learn how to hide money for me and my companions and our children, many of whom will be unemployed or underemployed for the foreseeable future.  They will depend on the little old ladies more than they know.

Third order – turn off the television.  It’s viral, sucking the life out of us.

Fourth order – eat less.  We all eat too much really.  I think 2 meals a day should suffice.  and eat properly – but children and working young people must have more food than we do.  That is a given.

Fifth order – I have to get out of this climate – it’s too brutal.  (I live in Chicago area)  I don’t know where to move yet but it must be done.


Docudharma Times Tuesday November 7

Tuesday’s Headlines:

Cancún summit: Rich countries accused over £30bn climate aid promise


FBI plant banned by mosque – because he was too extreme

Tax Deal Suggests New Path for Obama


MP’s numerous Russian restaurant partners aroused suspicions

Euro collapse ‘possible’ amid deepening divisions over bail-out

Middle East

US aided stifling of Iranian arms flow to Hamas

Ruling party sweeps Egypt’s vote


It’s a war zone out there

Al-Qaeda backs massive push in Swat


Ivory Coast’s Ouattara offers jobs to Gbagbo cabinet

African diplomats fearful of US-China relationships

9th Circuit judges explore narrow routes to reinstate gay marriage

U.S. appeals court appears to be seeking a way to restore same-sex marriage in California while avoiding a decision that would send Prop. 8 to the U.S Supreme Court.

By Maura Dolan and Jessica Garrison, Los Angeles Times

December 7, 2010, 12:18 a.m.

Federal appeals court judges Monday seemed headed toward a decision that could reinstate same-sex marriages in California while avoiding a ruling of national sweep that would invite U.S. Supreme Court action.

The judges explored at least two routes that could achieve that goal. One would be a ruling that California, having granted marriage rights to same-sex couples, could not take them away by popular vote.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

Time for a break from poetry…in order to create some art.

My uncle ordered popovers

from the restaurant’s bill of fare.

And, when they were served,

he regarded them with a penetrating stare.

Then he spoke great words of wisdom

as he sat there on that chair:

“To eat these things,” said my uncle,

“You must exercise great care.

You may swallow down what’s solid,

but you must spit out the air!”

And as you partake of the world’s bill of fare,

that’s darned good advice to follow.

Do a lot of spitting out the hot air.

And be careful what you swallow.

–Theodore Seuss Geisel

Ornamental 12

Senseless Death in the Korengal Valley

CORRECTION Media Pink Boxers

Spec. Pedro A. Maldonado was killed by “insurgents” near the village of Kandalay in the Korengal Valley, in Kunar Province, Afghanistan on October 29, 2010, and I did a sort of double-take about this story when I finally saw it yesterday, because…

After years of sustained fighting and casualties with little evident progress, the US military closed Korangal Outpost on April 14, 2010. Forty-two American service men died fighting in the Korangal and hundreds were wounded, primarily between the years of 2006 and 2009. Many Afghan soldiers died there as well, in part because they had poorer equipment. The valley has been dubbed “The Valley of Death” by American forces.

Late Night Karaoke

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