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The Right-Wing Id Unzipped | Women, Enforced Illiteracy

Tuesday 14 February 2012

Mike Lofgren | The Right-Wing Id Unzipped
Mike Lofgren, Truthout: "Right-wingers have occasioned much recent comment... Who are these people and what motivates them? To answer, one must leave the field of conventional political theory and enter the realm of psychopathology.... There are tens of millions of Americans who, although personally lacking the self-confidence, ambition and leadership qualities of authoritarian dominators like Gingrich or Sarah Palin, nevertheless empower the latter to achieve their goals while finding psychological fulfillment in subordination to a cause."
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Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker Implicated in Criminal Complaint Against Aides
Ernest A. Canning, The Brad Blog: "A 51-page criminal complaint (the 'Rindfleisch complaint'), which formally charges Kelly M. Rindfleisch with four felony counts of misconduct in public office, contains factual allegations which implicate a number of individuals, listed as 'interested parties,' including WI's controversial Republican Governor, in a wide-reaching criminal conspiracy to misuse public employees and resources for partisan political gain."
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Bill Moyers and Michael Winship | Money Throws Democracy Overboard
Bill Moyers and Michael Winship, Moyers & Co.: "Watching what's happening to our democracy is like watching the cruise ship Costa Concordia founder and sink slowly into the sea off the coast of Italy, as the passengers, shorn of life vests, scramble for safety as best they can, while the captain trips and falls conveniently into a waiting life boat. We are drowning here, with gaping holes torn into the hull of the ship of state from charges detonated by the owners and manipulators of capital."
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OWS Meets With Members of Dissident Movements From All Over the World
J.A. Myerson, Truthout: "In late January, two Wall Street Occupiers took a trip to Porto Alegre, Brazil, to meet with members of dissident movements from all over the world. The thematic Social Forum, serving as an anti-Davos economic forum, was set up to tackle the 'capitalist crisis, social and environmental justice.' Nelini Stamp and Amin Husain met with, among others, Chilean student demonstrators, Tunisian revolutionaries and 'indignant citizens' from Greece and Spain."
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Laura Flanders | How the 1 Percent Loves: The $100,000 Valentine
Laura Flanders, The Nation: "Lest any of us forget, some people have plenty of money to throw around. Take Valentine's Day. Here’s what one four-star hotel in Chicago was offering a few weeks back, courtesy of a press release from their publicist. The publicist at the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park Hotel confirms this is not a parody."
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Noam Chomsky | "Losing" the World: American Decline in Perspective
Noam Chomsky, TomDispatch: "At the moment, we are failing to commemorate the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's decision to launch the most destructive and murderous act of aggression of the post-World War II period: the invasion of South Vietnam, later all of Indochina, leaving millions dead and four countries devastated, with casualties still mounting from the long-term effects of drenching South Vietnam with some of the most lethal carcinogens known, undertaken to destroy ground cover and food crops."
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Cold, Cold Heart: Freezing Afghan Refugees Killed in NATO Airstrikes
Kathy Kelly, Truthout: "Here in Dubai, where I'm awaiting a visa to visit Afghanistan, the weather is already warm and humid. But my bags are packed with sweaters because Kabul is still reeling from the coldest winter on record. Two weeks ago, eight children under age five froze to death there in one of the sprawling refugee camps inhabited by so many who have fled from the battles in other provinces."
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Fracking Industry Colludes With Pennsylvania Legislature to Create Dangerous New Law
Maura Stephens, Maura Stephens' Blog: "The fracking industry has written a bill that gives itself legal permission to poison Pennsylvanians - and keeps doctors who treat them once they're poisoned from telling anyone else what poisoned them. The bill also essentially permits all gas drilling and processing activities anywhere, including in residential areas. It's all being sold as an 'impact fee' bill. Counties that want the income will sign on - and that probably means most counties will."
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Obama Budget Raises Taxes on Rich to Spend on Job Creation
Jackie Calmes, The New York Times News Service: "President Obama's final budget request of his term amounts to his agenda for a desired second term, with tax increases on the affluent and cuts in spending, especially from the military, both to reduce deficits and to pay for priorities like education, public works, research and clean energy."
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On the News With Thom Hartmann: As GOP Resurrects Keystone XL Pipeline, Environmental Activists Mobilize Online, and More
In today's On the News segment: GOP plans to uphold Grover Norquist pledge and reject Obama's budget proposal, Rick Santorum's Super PAC lets the truth slip out about politics in this post-Citizens United age, Republicans in the House resurrect the Keystone XL pipeline as environmental activists mobilize on the Internet, ACLU takes on the myth of voter fraud, and more.
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Women, Oppressed by Enforced Illiteracy, Are Still Afghanistan's Brightest Hope
Jim Burroughs and Suzanne Bauman, Truthout: "The women of Afghanistan are amazing. Despite decades of continuous warfare, they remain determined to build a society based on equal rights. They are, ultimately, the best hope for peace in the region. Since the persecution of women under Taliban rule became rampant in the late 1990s, thousands of women have come forward, many books have been written and films made to inform the rest of the world."
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Julie Doucet: How Does It Feel to Be Placed Among the Comic Greats?
Anne Elizabeth Moore and Aidan Koch, Truthout: "This week in 'Ladydrawers,' we have the third installment of our interview with one of the most important and talented female artists in North America - Julie Doucet.... In this segment, she talks about her role as a feminist icon and her decision to represent young women's self-destruction and sexuality to a mostly male audience."
Read the Comic Strip

Bahrain's Protests, Now in Their Second Spring, Hamstrung by US Oil, Iran Interests
Emily Wilson, Truthout: "Protesters in Bahrain are closer to the grassroots than in other Arab countries, Rajab said. 'The gap between the human rights elite and the people doesn't happen in Bahrain,' he said. During a recent week spent there, protests in the predominantly Shia villages outside of Manama were a nightly occurrence, with police check points, tear gas and smoke from burning tires lit by protesters."
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The concern over nations becoming "big brother" surveillance states is alive and well in Canada?

Canada, that bastion of civility, open-mindedness and relative nonviolence?

Yes, unless you don't follow foreign affairs, our neighbor to the north has been under a conservative - very conservative - government for a bit of time now, with Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper serving as prime minister.

The most recent threat to personal privacy coming out of Ottawa is a bill that sounds frighteningly reminiscent of ones we've seen in the US.

The "Act to enact the Investigating and Preventing Criminal Electronic Communications Act and to amend the Criminal Code and other acts" would, among other abominable violations of civil liberties:

Require internet service providers to give subscriber data to police and national security agencies without a warrant, including names, unlisted phone numbers and IP addresses.

Force internet providers and other makers of technology to provide a "back door" to make communications accessible to police.

Notice that in the first provision, no warrant would be required. In the second provision (and these represent only part of the sweeping legislation), law enforcement would be allowed an unspecified "back door" into private communications and web activity.

The bill is just in its preliminary stages, but already the Harper Tory government is using the seedy tactics of the US Republican Party to try and intimidate opponents who champion the preservation of civil liberties on the Internet. The Tory public safety minister is, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, accusing critics of the bill of "aligning themselves with child pornographers."

A Liberal Party member of the Canadian Parliament, Francis Scarpaleggia, was not backing down:

[Scarpaleggia] alleged during [a parliamentary] question period Monday that the government is "preparing to read Canadians' emails and track their movements through cellphone signals, in both cases without a warrant."

He questioned whether the government could be trusted with such "sweeping powers" and suggested they could be misused to intimidate Canadians gathering to protest issues such as a pipeline or pension cuts.

Should Canada follow the path of becoming an electronic surveillance state, is there any doubt that it will share this data with the US and vice versa?

And what happens when other nations follow the lead of the likes of Canada, the US, and - in the strange bedfellows department - China?

The emergence of a global, high-tech "big brother" monitoring our every move may not be far off - and that's not a conspiracy theory.

Mark Karlin
Editor BuzzFlash at Truthout

The Afghanistan Report the Pentagon Doesn't Want You to Read
Read the Article at Rolling Stone

Occupy Protesters Sue New York City Over Pepper-Spray Incident
Read the Article at Reuters

Pentagon Wants $3 Billion for the War in Iraq We Thought Was Over
Read the Article at

Maddow: Those Who "Expect" Sexual Assault in the Military
Read the Article at MSNBC

The Right's Inside-Out Constitution
Read the Article at Consortium News

Lawsuit Demands Koch Industries Return Profits From Madoff Ponzi Scheme Investments
Read the Article at ThinkProgress

US Newscorp Prosecutions Loom After Bribery Arrests
Read the Article at Daily Kos

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