The current and continuing invasion of the public's right to travel-by-air was created by TSA, and became further complicated by the illegal no-fly lists that now contain over two million names of individuals that are being denied their right-to-fly; based on secret information that cannot be confronted or legally refuted; despite the fact that no one has been arrested for terrorism under these draconian and unconstitutional "new Rules," since they were created. Despite the ravings of our national-lunatic Snarling Dick Cheney!
The US government is now so totally under the thumbs of organized interest groups that "our" government can no longer respond to the concerns of the American people who elect the president and the members of the House and Senate. Voters will vent their frustrations over their impotence on the president, which implies a future of one-term presidents. Soon our presidents will be as ineffective as Roman emperors in the final days of that empire.
Obama is already set on the course to a one-term presidency. He promised change, but has delivered none.
If you’ve ever read George Orwell’s, 1984, you know that, “Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia.” This seems eerily similar to the lie that we’ve been sold about the terrorist threat to our country. The lie that we need a “100-year war” because this enemy doesn’t abide by the “traditional” rules of war (whatever THAT means), and that we need to take the battle to them so we don’t end up with a “mushroom cloud” over here, is just that: a LIE. Perhaps a quick review of history will drive home this point:
I grew up in a fundamentalist missionary family that in the 1970s and 80s morphed into my father's activity as one of the founders of the Religious Right. We would hobnob with Republican leaders from Ronald Reagan to Gerald Ford and the Bush family, Jack Kemp and many others. One day it dawned on me that the far right of the Republican Party --- in other words its base --- actually hates America.
Before no other country on the planet does the United States kneel and plead like this. In other trouble spots, America takes a different tone. It bombs in Afghanistan, invades Iraq and threatens sanctions against Iran and North Korea. Did anyone in Washington consider begging Saddam Hussein to withdraw from occupied territory in Kuwait?
Kudos to the New York Times, and to reporters Dexter Filkins, Mark Mazzetti and James Risen, for their lead article today reporting that Ahmed Wali Karzai, brother of Afghanistan’s stunningly corrupt President Hamid Karzai, a leading drug lord in the world’s major opium-producing nation, has for eight years been on the CIA payroll.
What the article didn’t mention at all is that there is a clear historical pattern here. During the Vietnam War, the CIA, and its Air America airline front-company, were neck deep in the Southeast Asian heroin trade. At the time, it was Southeast Asia, not Afghanistan, that was the leading producer and exporter of opium, mostly to the US, where there was a heroin epidemic.
You can convince Americans of the miracle of Israel's founding and the justice of her struggle against terror and rejection. You can convince them that it makes demographic and political sense for Israel to trade settlements near Jerusalem to the Palestinian Authority in return for land elsewhere in Israel.
But you cannot convince Americans that it makes sense for an Israel that supports a Palestinian state to maintain a large settler population in the heart of the West Bank.
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