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Health Care & Environment
11.20 Dead fish to power cruise ships [using dead fish to ultimately kill more fish, animals and plants but at a slower rate]
11.20 Importing gas to replace domestic supply could push emissions up 20%, AGL says [We have to stop killing everything!!!]
11.20 The arts have a leading role to play in tackling climate change [We have to stop killing everything!!!]
11.20 Indonesia: dead whale had 1,000 pieces of plastic in stomach [We have to stop killing everything!!!]
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 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.]
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...]
News Media Matters
US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'
11.21 With Statement Equal Parts 'Dangerous' and 'Imbecilic,' Trump Smears Khashoggi and Vows to Back Murderous Saudis [Keeping oil prices affordable prolongs its use, its burning and our dying]
11.20 New York City subway and bus services have entered 'death spiral', experts say [death spirals are the end-thing nowadays]
11.19 Last Week Tonight with John Oliver 11/18/2018 (HBO) [29:26 video]
11.19 Trump Says He Was 'Fully Briefed' and Also 'Not Briefed Yet' But Either Way Saudi Crown Prince 'Absolutely' Not Involved Because Trump Knows 'Everything That Went On' Without Listening to Tape of Khashoggi Murder
11.19 'We Need New Leaders, Period': Progressive Newcomers Urge Democrats to Embrace Bold Agenda or Face Primary Challenges [Current Democrat leaders are highly compromised by corporate donations]
11.20 'He may not rewrite immigration laws': Trump's asylum ban blocked by federal judge [Has anyone thought about putting razor-wire around the White House?]
11.21 Saudi Arabia Accused of Torturing Jailed Women’s-Rights Activists [Trump's great friends...]
11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]
Economics, Crony Capitalism
11.19 Bankrupt Sears wants to give executives $19 million in bonuses [blatantly immoral and sick to richly reward those who led the company into the bankruptcy]
11.18 Big Pharma Bankrolled Pro-Trump Group As Trump Pushed Pharma Tax Cut [Corruption Central!]
International & Futurism
11.20 Trump administration hawks putting US on course for war with Iran, report warns [“Stupid is as stupid does.” –Forrest Gump]
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!]
Obama's War and Remembrance Day
How dare the Afghan people fight U.S. military occupation!
Originally published in This Can't Be Happening earlier today, 10 November 2009
I suggest it is time for progressives to start searching for a serious, gutsy, plain-speaking candidate to challenge Obama for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination in 2012.
With word being leaked out over the weekend that our Nobel Peace Prize President is close to announcing plans to escalate the US troop level in the Afghanistan War by 50%, we are about to have perhaps the ultimate of ironies—a president announcing a big step-up in American war-making on November 11, the day known around much of the Western world as Armistice Day.
While modern Americans might not know it, with all the boom and bombast and mindless flag-waving featured in the military parades popular in today’s warrior culture, November 11 was originally established by Congress back in 1919, a year after the day the guns of World War I finally went silent over the blood-drenched fields of Europe in what was once, in a naïve spasm of optimism, referred to as the War to End All Wars. In declaring the national holiday Armistice Day, Congress said it was to be “a day dedicated to the cause of world peace.”
It’s hard to see how President Obama, who has yet to actually receive his Nobel Prize as a peacemaker from Norway’s King Harald, is contributing to peace with the addition of another 34,000 US soldiers and Marines to the 68,000 already fighting, killing and dying on Afghan soil. Maybe he thinks holding this escalation to 34,000 instead of accommodating Afghanistan Theater Commander Gen. Stanley McCrystal’s request for 80,000 more troops is an act of pacificistic moderation.
I doubt it. (Incidentally, some Pentagon and White House flaks are referring to this escalation as another “surge,” but you can’t call a 50% increase in troop commitments a “surge.” It is what it is—a massive expansion of the current war effort.)
No, sadly, Obama, who has declared the bloody assault on one of the world’s most remote and impoverished lands to be a “necessary war,” seems stubbornly and ignorantly and foolishly to be trying to emulate the mistakes of an earlier Democratic president, Lyndon Baines Johnson, who turned a minor conflict in Vietnam into the biggest war, and biggest disaster, that the US has engaged in since World War II.
Of course, the difference between the two men, Johnson and Obama, is still enormous. While Obama may be just as bone-headed as was Johnson in caving to the will of his generals instead of leading them, he doesn’t hold a candle to Johnson when it comes to leading the charge for progressive domestic legislation. While Johnson was ginning up the war in Vietnam, he was simultaneously dragging the racist Democrats of the southern states kicking and screaming into the post-slavery world with passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1965, which for the first time enabled African Americans to actually participate in voting. He also rammed through Congress a truly innovative single-payer health program—Medicare--to provide health care for all Americans once they reached 65, or became disabled, as well as a second program--Medicaid--to care for the poor.
Against these great accomplishments, Obama hasn’t even shown the resolve to end discrimination against gays and lesbians in the military—something he could do with a phone call to the Joint Chiefs! That is to say, while he’s willing to pointlessly, on the basis of some bizarre political calculus, put another 34,000 young Americans in harm’s way in Afghanistan, he’s not willing to ban discrimination against those of them who may not be suitably heterosexual.
The signs are grimly clear that this silver-tongued but politically gutless president is steering the country into yet another military disaster—one that has killed 200 young men and women under his command, but which could easily become as costly in blood and fortune as was Johnson’s Vietnam War four decades ago. Making matters worse is the fact that while the Vietnam War was fought at a time when America was at its height as an economic power, today this country is an economic basket case.
I predict that it will not be long before protesters will be packing the Washington Mall and jamming the streets surrounding the White House shouting chants of “Hey, Obama, What Do You Say? How Many Kids Have You Killed Today?”(How’s he going to explain those shouts to his daughters, Sasha and Malia?)
The sheen has already warn off this latest huckster for American militarism and imperial adventure, and, with his increasingly blood-stained hands tied by the Pentagon and military quagmire, he has nothing to show domestically to earn him public support and affection. The man had a chance, nine months ago, to come into office and smash the criminal banking syndicate, to put Americans back to work with a serious jobs program, and to finally expand Medicare to all, bringing America into the modern world on health care. Instead he turned the financial system completely over to the banksters, helping them to grow even bigger, left the unemployed to fend for themselves, and fobbed off the job of health care “reform” on Congress, which predictably did the bidding of the Medical Establishment, and deep-sixed the whole thing.
It is, I would suggest, time for progressives to start searching for a serious, gutsy, plain-speaking candidate to challenge Obama for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination in 2012. This man needs to have a new Gene McCarthy or George McGovern breathing down his neck for the next three years.
Armistice Day would be a good day to launch that search.
About the author: Philadelphia journalist Dave Lindorff is a 34-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.
Copyright © 2009 The Baltimore News Network. All rights reserved.
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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 November 10, 2009.