Thursday, December 25, 2008

I am Truly sick of this person....

Ignoring the pleas of those calling for a more credible figure, Senate Democrats have instead chosen Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to lead the Senate Committee on Intelligence. Feinstein was among those who falsely claimed in 2002 — despite the lack of any apparent credible evidence — that Saddam Hussein had somehow reconstituted Iraq's arsenal of chemical and biological weapons, as well as its nuclear weapons program.

She used this supposed threat to justify her vote in October 2002 to grant President George W. Bush the unprecedented authority to invade Iraq. Most congressional Democrats voted against the resolution. So it is particularly disturbing that Democrats would award the coveted Intelligence Committee chair to someone from the party's right-wing minority.

...more here...

Dianne's results:

Monday, December 22, 2008


Torres del Paine, Chile

Fjord at Puerto Natales, Chile

...more here...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Leader of Women's Group Murdered in Iraq

Isn't this the part where someone invariably explains how much better off Iraqis are than they'd be under Saddam Hussein?

Iraqi police say attackers have decapitated the leader of the women's league of the Kurdish Communist Party.

Not In My Name

Not In My Name: No National Prayer By Rick Warren

(Robin Tyler and Diane Olson being married at the Beverly Hills Courthouse, Monday, June 16, 2008, in Beverly Hills, Calif. AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)

I'm not especially surprised that President-Elect Barack Obama has chosen to honor a Christianist fundamentalist like Rick Warren who earns his income and his standing by steadily endorsing hate beliefs against certain segments of American citizenship. Obama has seldom acted on his so-called belief in the human rights of lesbians and gays, not in a political sense. Him throwing us under the bus again was to be expected. I voted for him knowing he would.

What choice did I have? He knows that about us. Much of his gathered leadership knows it as well. If a point can be scored, a favor earned, by reiterating our expendibility, they will do it. They're not progressives as I define the term, and this is part of the reason why.

But the choice to have Warren deliver his invocation at the inauguration is more than handing us shit on a plate with an extra-big spoon. It's a shocking mistake, I believe, for at least three reasons...more here

Monday, December 15, 2008

I love this stuff...

Archaeology magazine's top 10 finds of 2008 include Maya paint...

...and ancient [human] poop.

And there are bonus finds as well, including a monumental discovery that the discoverers have been trying to keep under wraps...

OMG...but no surprise...

Senate report links Bush to detainee homicides; media yawns
Glenn Greenwald,

The bipartisan Senate Armed Services Committee report issued on Thursday -- which documents that "former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other senior U.S. officials share much of the blame for detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba" and "that Rumsfeld's actions were 'a direct cause of detainee abuse' at Guantanamo and 'influenced and contributed to the use of abusive techniques ... in Afghanistan and Iraq'" -- raises an obvious and glaring question: how can it possibly be justified that the low-level Army personnel carrying out these policies at Abu Ghraib have been charged, convicted and imprisoned, while the high-level political officials and lawyers who directed and authorized these same policies remain free of any risk of prosecution? The culpability which the Report assigns for these war crimes is vast in scope and unambiguous:

The executive summary also traces the erosion of detainee treatment standards to a Feb,. 7, 2002, memorandum signed by President George W. Bush stating that the Geneva Convention did not apply to the U.S. war with al Qaeda and that Taliban detainees were not entitled to prisoner of war status or legal protections.

"The president's order closed off application of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions, which would have afforded minimum standards for humane treatment," the summary said. too about the 25-yo detainee who died just yesterday of a 'heart attack'...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Universal Declaration of Human Rights 60th Anniversary

Human Rights ... for Whom?

by: Robin Willoughby, Share The World's Resources

The 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights will be rightly lauded as a landmark in international attempts to formalize the rights and responsibilities between governments and their citizens. If we ask if the Declaration has proven a success, however, we need only glance at a few statistics; almost three billion people live in poverty on less than US$2.50 a day, and the number of hungry people actually increased this year to nearly one billion people.[1] As the world reaped record levels of harvests in 2008, the most basic right to food is still denied to around 1 in 6 people on the planet.[2] But how did we get to this situation?

An answer to this can be simply put: on the international stage, the world's most powerful nations have prioritised those human rights associated with political freedom and peace and security, at the expense of those rights related to economic justice.

To read the full article...