THE NEWSLETTER

Today's Note From a  Madman

Monday, August 15, 2005

 

 

Bonnie's Home today. Thank you all for caring.

-Noah


A WEEK OF DISBELIEF otherwise known as ONE WOMAN CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Supposedly, they found 1500 gallons of chemicals in Iraq in the last 24 hours. What’s that, about 30-50 barrels? Not a large amount – probably wouldn’t even hold $100,000,000 in bills of the $9 BILLION missing. They don’t seem to be able to give any details about where they were found or what’s in them, etc. Believable? Not to me.

Earlier this week we were warned of oil truck hijackers. Believable? Maybe, but the source of the warning retracted it so what is there to believe.

An announcement by Rumsfeld of an “Un”Freedom Walk parade in DC on 9/11. What? To celebrate 9/11 with a Clint Black concert? Is it my imagination or is it possible this is just another strategy to deflect attention from the DC Anti-War march weekend on Sept 25-26 that has been planned since June. I suspect the Sept 24 anti-war march must be growing and there is a fear of its power and impact especially since there will be a number of cities it is taking place. I believe this was the motive behind Rummy’s parade. Plus, a Bush gang bonus benefit is to have it reinforce their followers’ denial of the lies that got us into IRAQ and again connect Iraq with 9/11.

And then the other BIG event this week is Cindy Sheehan and her vigil in Crawford, TX. I hope bush never comes out to speak to her. If he was at all clever, he would send his number one weapon – Laura – into to speak with Cindy and diffuse it all. But, that would mean he might be perceived as conceding to some wrongdoing and be subject to the passion of a progressive. At this point, it is best that he not speak to her with as it is provoking more awareness and thinking about this war by having Cindy camped out for the month. And we all need to rethink this war.

One major inaccurate comment I keep hearing is the “right’s” complain about how much attention Cindy is getting from the media. They continue to exhibit their delusion if they are referring to broadcast. I have the news on more than anyone I know in my home office and I work too many hours so it is on too many hours.

There was NO significant national broadcast coverage up until Thursday when Bush miscalculated and came out and spoke on his dirt road – trying to coherently ramble, which never works for him – and dared to mention her name and refer to “her position.” Actually, when he referred to “her position” it looked like he meant to say “her son” and he stumbled and said position. Either he forgot it was her son who was killed (last time he met with her he had to ask) or he did not want to humanize her in any way and “position” was a strategic choice to minimize her loss.

At the point he mentioned her name the broadcast outlets could not resist stepping in and covering because bush had broken the news for them! And, they did not want to be accused of not doing their jobs, though many of us know that they are not.

Now, it’s not as if the stations and cable weren’t showing some interest in interviewing her earlier the week. Many were making appointments with her then repeatedly canceling or just not calling at the appointed times. (Do you think they would ever blow off Michael Jackson if he consented to an interview and we know how much he cares for the safety of our nations’ children!) Pick a major channel and they had cancelled at least once.

My guess is that they were all very afraid to be the first to give her national coverage and their parent companies were holding them back. The O’Reilly’s of the world would cover it, but his type is always the first in to pick a scab. But the stations kept making appointments because they were hoping to be the second channel not the first to cover. So they all kept watching each other and canceling.

Enter the heroes of the day – the radio (thank
GOD for Air America for a GREAT job on every show), print media, and the Internet. There was extensive radio, press and Internet coverage – though mind you, collectively still not rivaling that of Michael Jackson or the Schiavo circus.

And now it is Saturday and I want to see what is going on in Crawford and there is barely a mention on TV. After watching CNN for a long time they showed some old clips from yesterday and previous days for about 60-90 seconds and devoted about an equal amount of time telling about the 100 women (only saw a couple – could they have exaggerated?) that went today to support Bush at an anti-Sheehan protest on the dirt road in Crawford.

I don’t mind that they show the anti-Sheehan protestors, but if they could show current pictures of today’s right wing protestors don’t you think they could have shown some current pictures of the Sheehan protestors. I think there were too many more people in the Sheehan camp as it is building each day and they did not want to show that.

Yesterday when Wolf Blitzer interviewed Cindy he also brought on another Mom who supports bush and whose son has died in this illegal war. Wolf is disingenuous at best so I timed his interviews (because I appreciate hard facts over subjective opinions). He had this other mother, who was found as a counterpoint, as the first person to be interviewed and talked to her for 8 minutes while Cindy waited. He then interviewed Cindy for about 4 minutes. Does this say it all?! He clearly was disrespecting Cindy. When would a reporter spend more time with a tangential guest and half the time with the main guest? When the reporter is biasing the story and not very professional. Guess Wolf’s new flashy set (much more flashy than him) has gone to his head.

So for anyone who feels there is too much press – get a grip and get over it. The reality is -- on TV she is getting less time than celebrity gossip, movie reviews, parents looking for missing children, golf, steroid scandals, grilling, and other less important topics. We are just lucky to have radio, print, and the Internet that are willing to cover it as a story this important should be covered.

Don’t forget the Sept. 24 anti-war protest in DC and other major cities. Many groups are involved so check your favorite progressive, liberal, or anti-war site.

-Casey Sweet



Reading Between the Lines

The presence of troops in Iraq (and Afghanistan) is nothing more than a training exercise for US troops. Lesson? Control of an armed, hostile, civilian population.

I KNOW, that this is what Iraq is, why our military is there, particularly National Guard and Reserve troops who are not nearly so brainwashed (or young) as regular military.

The time they are there is deliberate and calculated by psyops to be minimal to break loyalties with family and friends, religious conviction and moral values.

NPR, beginning last week, is already beginning to introduce reports about the plan of the DoD for these troops as they are brought back to the US, while troops already stationed abroad, like in Germany, are cycled through the new training grounds. The plan for troops coming home, through the next year is to make them first responders to civilian police calls. This is a plan that is supposedly geared to make people more 'safe.'

Meanwhile, the power behind the Bush administration has a plan to establish total global control and yes, they are using the Arab Muslim extremists to accomplish their agenda.

The plan? Utilizing the existing sleeper cells in the communities of the United States, they plan simultaneous attacks on several seacoast ports, both east and west. While attention is focused there, trunk lines for the grid will be knocked over with bombs that will do relatively little damage, (as they are for the most part on vast unpopulated tracts of land), except to our ability to function as a nation, without the lights on.

Without the grid, time itself will stand still, and all the people in the nation will be immobilized. Helpless. If you really want to find out how helpless, turn off your main breaker for two days, and pretend that the mains at the gas stations are also off, and the water utility, and the sewage utility, as well as the mains for point of purchase locations at all stores, ATMS, banks, schools, etc. Anybody got horses?

When Bush was elected to his first term, properties (homes) were approximately 80% owned, (by principle). This year, after the refinancing boom, homes are approximately 20% owned, (by principle). More people have homes, but many, many, many more people of today are evictable from those homes, than six years ago.

With the new, improved military, the grid down, and hundreds of millions of eviction notices, all pieces of a plot within two years of accomplishment, we are a breath away from total loss of the Constitution, either from rampant anarchy, or rampant fascism.

While we trace and trace and trace who did what, and when, the fascists in DC are five steps ahead of us, with their agenda of totalitarian, fascist, global control of people and resources. Will we discuss until the New American Gestapo is knocking at our doors, with relocation orders, arms confiscation orders, slave labor/military orders for our kids, or will we do something to take back our nation and our freedoms, despite the millions of people slogging through their jobs each day, unaware?

Cindy Sheehan is doing something. Shall we ALL demand an accounting with a physical action? Withhold taxes, putting funds in escrows to be paid when accountability is had from our administration, and Congress put on notice, as well as the Supreme Court justices, who by the way, have recently expanded the powers of eminent domain to the point of exclusion of personal property rights? March by the hundreds of millions into DC, demanding the restoration of the Constitution? Boycott gas stations for one week? Or one day?

We can do something now. In two years, it will be too late, due to scalar wave weaponry development, retraining, expansion and absorption of civilian law enforcement agencies into it, of our military.

And what are we here for, if not to do?

Remember, 'when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing the same object, shall reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their RIGHT, it is their DUTY, to throw off such government (Bush administration) and to provide them all, for their future security, (restoration of Constitution/abolishment of bureaucratically enacted and enforced law)

-Rhian


 

Thinking

Hurrah for the Muslims who call for a Reformation. There should be continual, ongoing Reformations in all religions--toward emphasizing love and understanding. I believe the world will pull out of Hell only when people realize that holy books are not always holy. Most of them have been messed around with by self-serving human beings who have a vested interest in maintaining power--sometimes absolute power that no mere human should ever possess.

The huge error of all varieties of Fundamentalism is to envision scripture as the actual words of
God taken down by some stenographer, but Moses, Isaiah, Amos, Muhammad, and the rest were profound religious prophets, and to believe they were mere stenographers insults them! Scriptural writings are the written-down words of passionate human beings who have made valiant efforts to listen to and interpret God . Their conclusions are often transmitted orally for various periods of time before being written down, and even afterward sometimes changed according to the political climate. The prophetic passion is a worthy religious effort, but bound to be limited considering our human limitations in understanding. Prophets can approach truth, especially those who have the poetic gift and who are wise enough to avoid too many specifically detailed injunctions, but God is far too vast, unknown and transcendent to be comprehended in mere words. I doubt I could worship a being that was any less awe-inspiring.

So, scripture needs continual discussion, interpretation and re-interpretation, along with an understanding of metaphor, parable and allegory, but even the sages fall short. No seminar or discussion group ever came up with the ultimate meaning of
God . Mystical experiences probably come nearest to approaching the essence of universal truth, but since each mystical quest is an individual journey these too are perilous. The healthy mystic is also a self-skeptic.

Roger Bacon, the far-seeing, excommunicated and imprisoned polymath Franciscan friar of the late 13th century, wrote that the Vulgate Bible of his day (read literally in the Fundamentalist way throughout the Middle Ages) was none the less full of scribal errors, wrong translations, and a great many obvious contradictions. There were also deliberate interpolations. Muhammad had his -- understandably -- depressed times when he grew impatient and angry, and the Qu'ran, although composed by a single person, may have picked up at least a few errors and interpolations during the factionally anarchic first two generations after Muhammad's death. For modern Muslims to begin reeling back from unhealthy statements in their scripture is admirable, just as Siddartha Gautama purified the Upanishads, Tom Paine dug out and published the problematic parts in the Judeo-Christian Bible, and Thomas Jefferson deleted all but the ethics. Hurrah for all who THINK.

When I lived in a house, and Fundamentalist missionaries sat in my living room drinking the iced tea I brought them, I used to recite the story of Elisha and the Bears along with Jesus' purported words that should make us scream if we take them literally: "I come not to bring peace, but a sword," and ask them how such could be taken literally. I see Elisha as having taught a parable to warn little kids not to make fun of his baldness, and Jesus as choosing the metaphorical use of common words to urge his followers to consider the radical implications of his teaching.

And I'd like someone to show me, in either the Old or New Testament, something more liberal than these explicit words in the Qu'ran (Surah 5:48): "If God had willed it, he would have created you one community, but he asks all to compete with one another in good works." That about says it all, and even if there were no further elevated concepts in the Qu'ran (which there are) that single verse makes it a holy book.

It's time to pull back from the ugliness and proclaim the beauty and wisdom in all the scriptures of the world and in each other's hearts. The work of half-Jewish Baptist minister and ecumenist, Charles Kimball, WHEN RELIGION BECOMES EVIL, shows us both the problems and a path of hope.

-Jenny Hanniver

As we say in my old neighborhood (Coney Island, Brooklyn, NY): Freekin' Beau-T-full! -NG



Timetables

Robin Wright and Ellen Knickmeyer wrote in Sunday's Washington Post the following:

The Bush administration is significantly lowering expectations of what can be achieved in Iraq, recognizing that the United States will have to settle for far less progress than originally envisioned during the transition due to end in four months, according to U.S. officials in Washington and Baghdad.

The United States no longer expects to see a model new democracy, a self-supporting oil industry or a society in which the majority of people are free from serious security or economic challenges, U.S. officials say.

"What we expected to achieve was never realistic given the timetable or what unfolded on the ground," said a senior official involved in policy since the 2003 invasion. "We are in a process of absorbing the factors of the situation we're in and shedding the unreality that dominated at the beginning."

(See URL for the rest: http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/1595)


Okay, help me here. Is Bush actually admitting to a mistake? I thought the Bush said he has no timetable yet a "senior official" refers to one. Bush has not been honest about the reasons for the Iraq war, the cost and the exit strategy. I no longer accept empty slogans such as "stay the course" and "complete the mission". I want to know:

1) What mission?
2) When will the mission be over - yes, I want to hear about that timetable referenced by the senior official.
3) When are the Downing Street Memos going to be investigated.
4) When are White House official(s) going to be indicted for outing Valerie Plame Wilson.


-Forwarded and Comments by Robert Scardapane



Do You See What I've Got To Put Up With?

 

In an ongoing argument, Michael Patmas and I have been going back and forth about jobs in America. This is the last thing I'll say on the subject to him because I really feel he just doesn't get it:

MICHAEL PATMAS: There may be some place...I don't know where....where you can pick up a newspaper and not find a single job in the classifieds.
 

NOAH GREENBERG: Another thing you don’t get. In the 18 months I was out of work, there were where I applied for over 100 positions. I looked in the New York Times, The Philadelphia Enquirer, the Newark Star-Ledger as well as on-line and in other metropolitan areas. I followed up and still didn't get a call back. Like you said, you never spent a day without work, so how in the world could you know the frustration, humiliation and desperation involved with being out of work?

That was a rhetorical question: You can't and you refuse to see it.

It must be nice living in "
Patmas-Land".



Stupid Quote of the Day

"Wouldn't it be great if anybody who speaks out against this country, to kick them out of the country? Anybody that threatens this country, kick 'em out. We'd get rid of Michael Moore, we'd get rid of half the Democratic Party if we would just import that law. That would be fabulous."
-Russ Limbaugh

It would indeed be great to get rid of Russ Limbaugh but as an advocate of civil liberties I am compelled to defend his right to spew this anti-Americanism!

I sometimes wonder - is Republicanism a mental disease? Maybe, Rush just needs more drugs.

-Robert Scardapane



''Whether it be here or in Washington or anywhere else, there's somebody who has got something to say to the president, that's part of the job. And I think it's important for me to be thoughtful and sensitive to those who have got something to say. But I think it's also important for me to go on with my life, to keep a balanced life."
-"G"lobal "W"arming Bush

Come on Mr. President, you can afford to use one hour of your daily two hour exercise break to speak with Cindy Sheehan. Her life lost "balance" when her son was killed in action, she has legitimate questions about this war and you should answer them.

-Robert Scardapane


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-Noah Greenberg