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Humankind’s future: social and political Utopia or Idiocracy?

November 2nd, 2009

Roland Michel Tremblay

By some coincidence in the last three days I read Men Like Gods of H. G. Wells and watch the films Idiocracy, City of Ember and WALL-E. They all deal with humankind’s future, a very bleak future that could possibly become the ultimate Utopia or perfect world, not before another world war, the extinction of humanity, and survival of a few humans to come back to Earth from space, or emerging from underground to start anew. Is this what we can expect of our future, imminent self-destruction?

Should we be planning colonies and ship them into space or below ground, like, right now? Is it because we feel the end of humanity is fast becoming, that we are far reaching the end of all our broken institutions, that suddenly the topic of our future, or lack of it, is so pro-eminently featured even in children’s films? The topic is not new, H. G. Wells’ discourse in Men Like Gods is so up to date with what is happening today, even though it was written in 1923, that one must believe nothing has changed socially and politically for the last 100 years.

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What Physicians Know

November 2nd, 2009

Joel S. Hirschhorn

I had a long conversation with my favorite physician, who has operated on me twice successfully. He is an incredibly kind person without an ounce of greed or pretense. Like other physicians I have spoken to, he spoke eloquently about the terrible times he consistently has with private health insurance companies.

While he praises Medicare for its simplicity and certainty, he has absolutely nothing positive to say about private insurers. They take up huge amounts of time of him and his staff, trying in every possible way to deny services to their customers (his patients) and also to pay as little as possible to him. His endless struggles with the insurance companies make his life miserable. Meanwhile all he cares about is giving his patients the very best care and not making them suffer because of their insurance carriers.

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GOLDSTONE TELLS MOYERS / ISRAEL GUILTY OF WAR CRIMES

November 2nd, 2009

Allen L Roland

Bill Moyers interviews Judge Richard Goldstone

Highly respected Judge Richard Goldstone, who is both a Jew and a Zionist, rightfully condemns Israel's policy of collective punishment of a people under effective occupation, destroying their means to live a dignified life as well as the trauma caused by the kind of military intervention the Israeli government called Operation Cast Lead:

The highly anticipated Goldstone human rights report has exposed Judge Goldstone to both universal acclaim as well as some strident and bitter criticism ~ mainly from the Israeli far right ~ however, late last week, the UN's Human Rights Council officially endorsed his findings.

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Peter Eyre's "Did Richard Goldstone hide more sinister crimes in Gaza?" -A Comment

November 1st, 2009

Dai Williams


A Palestinian man places a green Islamic flag used by the militant group Hamas on the
rubble of a destroyed mosque after an Israeli air strike in Gaza City on December 31, 2008
(AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

I have concerns about Peter Eyre's looseness on facts and attribution of sources. But I cannot fault his energy or timeliness. While I sit pondering what to write next he gets it right out there.

Did Richard Goldstone hide more sinister crimes in Gaza? - Part 1: White Phosphorus and Flechettes + Part 2 + Part 3

BUT this article and the title don't match up. This article is mainly a copy of a resolution in the US Congress. [See H.R. 867 below.] The resolution illustrates unquestioning support for Israel in some sections of US society. It also illustrates either ignorance of Fact Finding Mission (FFM), or deliberate misinformation by the authors, and Ms Clinton by referring to the original manadate which was one-sided, and the actual mission - that deliberately opened the report to question both sides of the conflict. Any further allegation about the mandate simply invalidate the criticism as prejudice, ignoring the facts and conduct of the FFM. (I have a list of over 20 errors in the resolution - of fact or deliberate misinterpration. But that would be a separate message.)

However Peter Eyre's article title asks "Did Richard Goldstone hide more sinister war crimes in Gaza?" Whose side is Peter Eyre on? Because he did not explain his own implied allegation let me write his next report before he does. The answer is yes and no.

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Dear Jon and Message to The Media

November 1st, 2009

eileen fleming

On 10/28/09, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart did what the mainstream media has failed to report about-the rapidly growing global nonviolent solidarity movement of resisters to the occupation of Palestine, by hosting a Palestinian politician and American Jewish scholar and activist author.

The News Media should be interviewing Dr. Mustafa Barghouti & Anna Baltzer, Jon's job is to entertain us, but once again, he lead the mainstream media to where many of US already are.

Jon also performed under duress from 'friends' who put him under pressure to censor the highly anticipated appearances of Dr. Barghouti and Baltzer. As of this writing on October 31, 2009, The Daily Show forum conversation regarding the BB show has attracted 21,059 reads to its first page and over 500 messages.

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Legislating inequality: Last year in California, this year in Maine?

November 1st, 2009

Mary Shaw

A lot of Americans pay very little attention to the off-year elections, like the ones that will take place on Tuesday, November 3. After all, we're not electing a president, or members of Congress. This year's election is mostly about judges, school board members, and a handful of state governors.

However, there are often some ballot measures that merit a greater turnout than they usually see. This time around, the one I'm watching most closely is the Maine referendum on same-sex marriage.

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The Lungs of the Earth

November 1st, 2009

by Andrew Glikson


Figure 1. A plot of global mean temperature (increase above pre-industrial
time in degrees C) vs atmospheric greenhouse gas (GHG) concentration
(in CO2-eqivalent, a value which includes the effect of methane). The
assumed climate is 3+/-1.5 degrees C per doubling of CO2-e. The field I, II,
III, etc. correspond to the IPCC’s various emission scenarios. IPCC Climate
Change 2007: Synthesis Report, figure 5.1 ipcc.ch/graphics/syr/fig5-1.jpg

The recent warning by Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact: “We are simply talking about the very life support system of this planet” [1] is consistent with the lessons arising from the history of the Earth’s atmosphere/ocean system. A rise of CO2-e (CO2-equivalent, including the effect of methane) above 500 ppm and of mean global temperature toward and above 4 degrees C, projected by the IPCC [2], Copenhagen [3] and Oxford [4] scientific reports, as well as reports by the world’s leading climate science bodies (NASA/GISS, Hadley-Met, Potsdam Climate Impact Institute, NSIDC, CSIRO, BOM), would transcend the conditions which allowed the development of agriculture in the early Neolithic, tracking toward climates which dominated the mid-Pliocene (3 Ma) (1 Ma = 1 million years) and further toward greenhouse Earth conditions analogous to those of the Cretaceous (145–65 Ma) and early Cenozoic (pre-34 Ma). Lost all too often in the climate debate is an appreciation of the delicate balance between the physical and chemical state of the atmosphere-ocean-land system and the evolving biosphere, which controls the emergence, survival and demise of species, including humans.

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How the “most moral army in the world” wages war on students

November 1st, 2009

Stuart Littlewood


Berlanty Azzam: arrested and taken to Gaza in the
middle of the night, just two months before graduation

[Stuart Littlewood highlights one of the latest achievements of the Israeli army – the “most moral army in the world” – which since 2000 has murdered 1400 Palestinian children: handcuffing a female Palestinian student, loading her into a military jeep and evicting her from Bethlehem, where she was studying at university, to Gaza, just two months before graduating.]

If there's one thing the Israelis are good at it's making war on women and children.

They killed 952 Palestinian kiddies in their homeland between 2000 and the start of the Gaza blitzkrieg in December 2008 (according to statistics from the Israeli human rights group B'Tselem). They murdered at least 350 more during their Cast Lead onslaught and have kept Gaza under daily attack ever since. So the brave Israelis must have eliminated nearly 1400 youngsters by now. Would anyone care to guess how many they left bleeding, maimed and crippled?

The "most moral army in the world" also loves waging war against Palestinian university students. Not long ago I wrote about Merna, an honours student in her final year majoring in English. Israeli soldiers frequently rampaged through her Bethlehem refugee camp in the middle of the night, ransacking homes and arbitrarily arresting residents. They took away her family one by one. First her 14-year-old cousin and best friend was shot dead by an Israeli sniper while she sat outside her family home during a curfew.

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McClatchy Busts Goldman on Double Dealing

November 1st, 2009

Today, McClatchy Newspapers added the how to the what Goldman did in its investment banking business. Right after the 2008 election, Pro Publica broke a story about Goldman urging key clients to dump California bonds after Goldman had a big pay day from the state to sell the bonds in the first place:

"Goldman, Sachs & Co. urged some of its big clients to place investment bets against California bonds this year despite having collected millions of dollars in fees to help the state sell some of those same bonds." Pro Publica, Nov. 11, 2008

The McClatchy Newspapers story shows the same pattern of self serving, double dealing. Goldman sold packages of high risk loans as though they were premium securities. This coincided with Goldman's assessment that the subprime securities market was a loser. That's the type of double dealing that gets you in serious trouble. The article quoted below has it all - the story of the deceptive sales, a chart of the revolving door for Goldman and the fedeal government, and some very good writing.

Greg Gordon was the senior reporter for McClatchy's excellent investigative series on the Bush Department of Justice scandals. He is an outstanding investigator, thorough, and persistent. McClatchy is well worth watching on this story. Michael Collins

How Goldman Secretly Bet on the U.S. Housing Crash

By Greg Gordon|McClatchy Newspapers
Nov. 1, 2009

WASHINGTON — In 2006 and 2007, Goldman Sachs Group peddled more than $40 billion in securities backed by at least 200,000 risky home mortgages, but never told the buyers it was secretly betting that a sharp drop in U.S. housing prices would send the value of those securities plummeting.

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Whitewashing war crimes with stale lies

November 1st, 2009

By Khalid Amayreh

"I fear very much that the Jews are like all underdogs. When they get on the top they are just as intolerant and cruel as the people were to them when they were underneath. I regret this situation very much because my sympathy has always been on their side.” - Harry Truman

Many Zionist Jews are angry and frustrated these days following the ample attention given to the Goldstone report around the world.

This is why huge amounts of classical Zionist lies about the Nazi-like winter onslaught against the Gaza Strip are being pumped through the internet.

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