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11.16 Scotland was first Industrialized Country to Run wholly on Wind in October

11.16 How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year [how many thousands more die early from eating pesticide-laced food?]

11.15  The long read:  The plastic backlash: what's behind our sudden rage – and will it make a difference? [the world wants to throw-up...]

11.15 Claws out: crab fishermen sue 30 oil firms over climate change [workers are waking-up...]

11.15 Trump administration to cut air pollution from heavy-duty trucks

11.14 Backed by Ocasio-Cortez, Youth Climate Activists Arrested in Pelosi's Office Demanding Democrats Embrace 'Green New Deal'

11.13 What would a smog-free city look like?

11.13 Global report highlights Australia’s renewables potential amid mixed signals for coal

11.13 Interior department whistleblower: Ryan Zinke hollowed out the agency

11.12  This Land is Your Land:  The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.12 Planned Parenthood's new president warns of 'state of emergency' for women's health

11.11 Trump responds to worst fires in California’s history by threatening to withhold federal aid [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.11 Interior department sued for ‘secretive process’ in at-risk species assessment [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.11 Keystone XL pipeline: judge rules government 'jumped the gun' and orders halt [behaving ignorantly again...]

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11.17 As Energy for Medicare for All Explodes, Steny Hoyer's Plan Includes Waiting for Trump to Help Make Obamacare Better [Another who is unfit to be Democrat leader]

11.17 'A Staggeringly Bad Idea': Outrage as Pelosi Pushes Tax Rule That Would 'Kneecap the Progressive Agenda' [Unfit to be Democrat leader]

11.17 Trump Is Starting to Panic

11.16 As 'Green New Deal' Demand Grows, Democrats Have Choice: Confront and Defeat Fossil Fuel Industry or Take Credit for 'Doomed' Planet [Two choices: Save life-on-Earth or help Republicans let it die?]

11.16 Trump’s latest interview shows a president who’s in way over his head

11.16 Why the political fight in Georgia is far from over

11.16 Florida judge sides with Democrats, giving thousands a second chance to fix their ballots

11.15 Democrats Won Big. Can They Go Bold, Too? [it's about suppressing the influence and leadership by Republican-like Democrats who counsel 'íncremental' (no) change, such as Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, Hillary Clinton, Chuck Shumer and Joe Biden]

11.15 Pentagon Officials Forced to Make Fewer Public Appearances to Avoid Provoking Trump [...by revealing Trump's huuuge ignorance]

11.15 REPUBLICANS USED A BILL ABOUT WOLVES TO AVOID A VOTE ON YEMEN WAR [if there are 'defense industry' profits to be made—including congress-critter insider-trading—and political 'donations' to be had, we mustn't stop killing innocent civilians!]

11.15 Big Oil v the planet is the fight of our lives. Democrats must choose a side

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High Crimes?

11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]

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11.16 Amazon’s HQ2 Will Get a Tax Break Designed to Help the Poor [a Republican program that directly helps participating wealthy companies—but only helps workers if and when 'trickle-down' occurs.]

11.16 Trump doesn’t want to punish Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi. His new sanctions prove it. [George W. Bush made a similar immoral decision for the same oily reasons after 9-11, protecting Saudi defense contracts while facilitating the slaughter of poorer Arab "terrorists" in the region.]

11.15 The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us [fossil fuel burning, un-recyclable plastic production/use and methane gas release must cease ASAP.]

International & Futurism

11.17 Saudi crown prince's 'fit' delays UN resolution on war in Yemen

11.17 Thousands gather to block London bridges in climate rebellion [We're losing WWIII because the enemy is invisible while we're like frogs slowly cooking. We aren't informed enough to be alarmed, but must get organized and motivated to fight back. We need a War Plan to ruthlessly pursue the fight of our lives!]

11.17 Policies of China, Russia and Canada threaten 5C climate change, study finds [Climate catastrophe is increasingly likely without worldwide organization, funding and commitment to winning THE WAR AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING.]

11.17 CIA finds Saudi crown prince ordered Jamal Khashoggi killing – report

11.15 Cuba to pull doctors out of Brazil after President-elect Bolsonaro comments [terms must be negotiated for fairness to Cuba's health professionals without disruption of healthcare for Brazil's poor]

11.14 'Appalling' Khashoggi audio shocked Saudi intelligence – Erdogan [Exposing a psychopath?]

11.14 Israel and Hamas launch hundreds of attacks in Gaza clash

11.14 Mueller seeking more details on Nigel Farage, key Russia inquiry target says

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  Waiving the Rules for Old Glory
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OPINION:

Waiving the Rules for Old Glory

by Walter Brasch
Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Americans use flags and flag-decorated clothes, most of them made by non-union labor in China and other overseas countries, to "prove" they are more patriotic than the next person.

Within a month of 9/11, millions of Americans bought American flags. Small flags they flew from their cars, trucks, and bicycles. Medium-sized flags they planted in their front yards, put onto their home windows, and flew from recently-installed metal poles on doors and porches. Large flags they flew in front of their businesses.

In our tragedy and grief we stuck together, the flag a symbol of our unity and patriotism.

It wasn't long until commercialism in the guise of patriotism dominated the American unity. In newspaper and magazine ads, in television campaigns, whether for cars or political races, we saw the message and an image of the flag. In myriad direct mail flyers, we first saw the flag and a patriotic call—and then an advertising pitch that each of us had an inviolate right to buy whatever the advertiser was pushing. General Motors even claimed that we could "get America rolling" again by buying cars.

During the 1960s, war protesters who wore clothes with the American flag design were beaten by “patriots” who believed the "hippies" were abusing a sacred image. However, for several years after 9/11, the fabric of America was “patriots” who wore high-priced T-shirts, pants, ties, and bandannas, all with images of American flags and slogans, all in violation of federal regulations.

Americans use flags and flag-decorated clothes, most of them made by non-union labor in China and other overseas countries, to "prove" they are more patriotic than the next person. They have demanded that politicians wear flag lapels. They have bought bigger and bigger flags, in the mistaken believe that flying a flag and being patriotic are the same thing. But, these "patriots" have also flown their flags improperly, often hanging the blue field in the wrong corner, sometimes tacking the flag to wooden walls. They have allowed their flags to have flown in rain- and snow-storms, becoming tattered and faded. And when some flags become too faded or too torn, their owners just throw them out, rather than give them the proper retirement that the Flag Code requires.

Woodrow Wilson established Flag Day in 1916, but it has never been a federal holiday. Pennsylvania is the only state to declare the day a state holiday.

Woodrow Wilson established Flag Day in 1916, but it has never been a federal holiday. Pennsylvania is the only state to declare the day a state holiday.

Ironically, many flag-waving pretend-patriots know little about American history and almost nothing about the Constitution.

This June 14, perhaps Americans should not only fly their flags, but might also read some American history, a little more about the Constitution—and, the rules and regulations for properly flying the flag. Patriotism, indeed, is not shown by how large your flag is, or how many days you fly it, but by how well you understand the principles that established this nation.


Walter M. Brasch is a university professor of journalism, social issues columnist, and the author of 17 books. His current book is Sinking the Ship of State: The Presidency of George W. Bush, available from amazon.com, bn.com, and other stores. You may contact him through his website, www.walterbrasch.com



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This story was published on June 10, 2009.
 

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