Local Stories, Events
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Ref. : Letters to the editor
Health Care & Environment
11.18 Air pollution levels ‘forcing families to move out of cities’ [like from desertification, lack of drinkable water and rising oceans, there will also be pollution-caused immigration until humans fix things]
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.]
11.16 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...]
11.12 This Land is Your Land: The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]
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...]
News Media Matters
US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'
11.18 Trump says Pelosi deserves speakership, offers Republican votes [An affirmation of Pelosi's unsuitability]
11.18 Khanna to Pelosi: Don't Just Create Green New Deal Select Committee, Make Ocasio-Cortez Its Chair [Will Pelosi earnestly change, or end her career in disgrace?]
11.18 Chuck Schumer, Feckless Hack [Neoliberal Democrats must go!]
11.18 What the State of the VA Tells Us About Trump’s War on Welfare [Privatizing often results in outright fraud and higher costs by private prisons, privatized health insurance and health care, privatized public schools and online "colleges" like Trump University]
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]
11.16 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?]
11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]
Economics, Crony Capitalism
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
11.18 France demands UK climate pledge in return for Brexit trade deal [Excellent!]
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!]
A GOVERNMENT, OR A MAFIA?
CIA’s Lies About Secret Program Should Have Congress In Open Revolt
Friday, 10 July 2009
When it comes to exposing the crimes and abuses of the Bush/Cheney years, the Obama administration has decided it likes what it saw, and wants to continue with the new executive powers and secrecy that it inherited.
If this were the democracy that the Founding Fathers thought they were creating, word from CIA Director Leon Panetta that his agency had lied to Congress and specifically that it had lied repeatedly from 9-11-2001 through the end of 2008 concerning an as-yet undisclosed secret program, would have virtually every member of Congress in a state of rebellion, demanding answers.
After all, the CIA is required by law to report to at least the majority and minority leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees and to the majority and minority leaders of both houses of Congress about such things.
But not only did the spy agency not report on what it was up to; it lied about what it was up to.
Now, given what we do know about the Bush/Cheney administration—that it initiated a massive campaign of spying on Americans by the Defense Department, the FBI, and the National Security Agency, as well as other intelligence agencies, that it initiated a campaign of torture of captives, including American citizens, while asserting that the President didn’t even need to notify the courts or the public about the arrest, detention, torture or even execution of an American citizen if he, acting on his own, deemed that person to be an “enemy combatant,” and given that we also know that Bush and Cheney lied repeatedly about the justification for their invasion of Iraq, and refused to be put under oath in their “interviews” by the 9-11 Commission, you would think the members of Congress, which was railroaded into supporting everything from the USA PATRIOT Act to the Iraq War invasion based on all these lies and deceptions, would be demanding answers regarding this mysterious program.
Instead, we get vague expressions of concern, and promises of reform by congressional leaders like Rep. Steny Hoyer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and by CIA Director Panetta.
And no explanation of the program in question, even though Panetta claims it was never actually implemented.
Why, we should be asking, would the CIA have lied for eight long years about the existence of a program that it never implemented?
Anyone who believes that nonsense should be a prime target of one of those Nigerian internet scammers. There’s a lot of money to be made from such suckers.
My guess is that what is being hidden here was a massive spying campaign by the Agency against Americans and/or a dirty campaign of assassinations conducted on a national and international scale—one which would assuredly have led to many deaths of innocent people.
Given that we have learned, courtesy of the excellent reporting by New Yorker writer Seymour Hersh, is that Vice President Cheney personally oversaw the operation of a secret death squad operation, called the Joint Special Operations Command, allegedly led by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, now head of US operations in Afghanistan.
Given the timing of this big CIA lying campaign—it began immediately after 9-11, right when Cheney was saying that the US would need to turn to “the dark side”—it doesn’t take much imagination to suspect that this is what it is all about.
Take a bunch of power-drunk people in the White House and the Pentagon, and a cowering Congress and an American public being deliberately frightened out of its wits, a new set of laws and executive orders that give the president and his subordinates dictatorial powers that would have made Saddam Hussein or Joseph Stalin envious, and it’s a short step to a black campaign of terror, disappearances and executions.
All of this will eventually come to light, I am sure. But it is unlikely to come to light courtesy of the Congress, which is showing all the assertiveness of a field mouse. Nor is it likely to be exposed by the corporate media, which have long since thrown in the towel on serving as a Fourth Estate. And it sure won’t come from the Obama administration, which is even opposing timid calls in Congress for a broader future requirement for notification of Congress about CIA activities and actions. When it comes to exposing the crimes and abuses of the Bush/Cheney years, the Obama administration has decided it likes what it saw, and wants to continue with the new executive powers and secrecy that it inherited.
So we’ll have to wait for honest whistle-blowers and for the alternative media to find out the real story here.
Jefferson, Madison et all must be cringing in their coffins at the wreckage of their creation.
About the author: Philadelphia journalist Dave Lindorff is a 36-year veteran, an award-winning journalist, a former New York Times contributor, a graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, a two-time Journalism Fulbright Scholar, and the co-author, with Barbara Olshansky, of a well-regarded book on impeachment, The Case for Impeachment. His work is available at www.thiscantbehappening.net.
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Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.This story was published on July 10, 2009.