Friday, January 25, 2008

The GOP Will Have to Steal the Next Election Because They Cannot Win it

The Republican party is losing its "business base" because it's on the wrong side of every issue that will decide the Presidency and the make up of congress. Those issues include the economy, the endless war, ballooning deficits and health care. A killer issue is a fact gaining traction even among the GOP: the GOP is bad for a good economy. I've got the stats to prove that beyond any reasonable doubt. Also spelling doom for the GOP is the fact that even hard-nose businessmen are "fed up" with GOP myopia, its fanatical obsession with so-called "social issues", primarily, abortion and gay marriage. These are not the "wedge issues" they used to be. People are just sick of hearing about it! Give it a frickin' rest.
Focus On Social Issues. Countless businessmen I know tell me they are exhausted with the Republicans' focus on abortion, gay marriage, and the host of social issues the party insists on putting on the front burner. Business journals have similar reports. This is not surprising, for all polls show that for most Americans, these are not the centrally important issues.

--John Dean, The Dwindling Republican Business Base: It's the Economy, Stupid
This is expected from so-called progressives and liberals, but the growing sense of discontent and malaise found among those who would normally vote or consider themselves GOP may spell utter disaster come election day. Like everyone else, it seems, business people are likewise fed up with the endless war against Iraq.

The War In Iraq. Just as many other Americans find the war in Iraq an unqualified disaster, businesspeople tell reporters that they do not like the lies Bush and Cheney told, to take us into a war that will likely only create more terrorists hating America. Like many others, they see this as dangerous folly. In addition, the war has been a fiscal disaster, with billions thrown away and no accounting whatsoever. As a retired Westinghouse manager and lifelong Republican told the Wall Street Journal, "'We've lost control of spending,' and the administration's execution of the Iraq war has been 'incompetent.'" Businesspeople have little tolerance for incompetence; only true ideologues can over look it.

--John Dean, The Dwindling Republican Business Base: It's the Economy, Stupid
With all due respect to John Dean, whose columns for Findlaw never fail to cut to the chase, I have been saying for years that when it comes to the economy, any credit given the GOP is unfounded. The GOP has presided over worse economic growth married to increased federal spending at least since World War II. The administration of Ronald Reagan should have been the wake up call. Reagan's tax cut of 1982 was followed by a depression of some two years. GOP types counter that following the recession, the economy rebounded with a boom. Hardly! At the end of two years of negative growth, in fact the worst "depression" since the crash of 1929, Americans were lucky that the economy merely resumed an anemic 3 percent growth rate, nothing to write home about. Big corporations could write off many losses but inividuals and families, as usual, were stuck with the tab. Many never really fully recovered.

We haven't seen incompetence on this scale since Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert Hoover, Ronald Reagan or Bush Sr. (all Republicans, need I remind?)

The time has come to bury forever two tired, old, worn-out GOP shibboleths: 1) Wealth does not and never will trickle down; 2) there is no invisible hand! Just ask Larry Craig. In the meantime, check out these budget deficits below, caused primarily by profligate tax cuts which have never stimulated the economy and have, in fact, never trickled down. Notice that the worst deficits --like terrorism --are worse during GOP regimes.
According to supply-side theory, these actions should have nudged the economy in the right direction, not plunged it into the worst recession in 40 years. Other problems involve timing: Reagan's first tax cuts went into effect in 1982, but this was also the summer that the Federal Reserve Board slashed interest rates and expanded the money supply. Most economists believe the Fed, not Reagan, was responsible for the following recovery. Finally, the recession of 1990 began four months before Bush broke his "no new taxes" pledge. The recession began in July 1990; Bush signed his tax increases into law in November 1990.

And supply-siders are careful to note that Reagan's was the longest peacetime expansion since World War II. In truth, the Kennedy-Johnson expansion was longer: 106 months compared to Reagan's 92.1

--The Reagan Years

Moreover, the Fed's "peace time expansion" following Ronald Reagan's "depression" of almost two years was uneven. The worst income disparities in American history had already been triggered. As if by design, Reagan's rich base got even richer and everyone else lost ground. They are still losing ground despite an all to brief respite in Bill Clinton's second term. The GOP has ruined the American economy, perhaps forever. The budget shown below --your money squandered by Bush.

The terms "liberal" and "conservative" are all but meaningless in the world apres-Bush. Both terms already mean something different than they did in the 19th Century. For example, British economist John Maynard Keynes was until very recently scorned by the right wing; his brand of economics was called "liberal" and he was simplistically, perhaps, simple-mindedly, associated with Marx. Yet, Keynes took issue with Karl Marx on key points. "I don't want a social revolution", Keynes said. He went on to characterize poverty as a "...dysfunctional threat" to a capitalist system which he favored. Fact is, Keynes, for all his notoriety was conservative.

Nevertheless, that Keynes denounced "poverty" is enough to earn him the enmity of modern conservatives who obviously like the feelings of superiority they experience when millions of others are without jobs and scrambling to feed themselves or, as Bush put it, to "...put food on your families".

It is Keynes' use of the phrase "...extending the traditional functions of government" that inspires conservatives to cross themselves and wear garlic. It was by "extending" those traditional functions that Keynes believed unemployment could be eliminated. This is, of course, anathema to laissez-faire throwbacks like Ron Paul whose economic thinking is stuck in 19th Century mud.

The same conservatives are not bothered by "extensions of government" effected by Reagan, Bush Sr., and now the Shrub. Ronald Reagan's program would have been thought "liberal" had the same program been advocated by a Democrat. As Richard Nixon committed the nation to deficits of truly "liberal" proportions, he famously said: "We are all Keynesians now".

The GOP has managed to screw up even that tried and proven formula. When Democrats practice Keynesian economics, it works. When the GOP does it, the nation slides into recession or depression as the rich get rich off the carcasses left behind. Check the chart! The reason for that is the fact that GOP "tax cuts" enrich an already elite. Very little of any of those "tax cut windfalls" ever trickle down to anyone in any way at any time. It is probably found offshore like every job that the GOP has managed to export despite the bullshit that was told me by Milton Friedman personally.

The biggest spending "liberals" are the GOP, yet, unlike "big spending Democrats" whose deficits were accompanied by handsome and egalitarian growth, GOP big spending is invariably associated with depression, stagflation, outsourcing and rising unemployment! If this is done deliberately to enrich cronies, then the GOP leadership should be tried en masse for criminal conspiracy. If not, they should be pilloried as the lying incompetents that they have proven themselves to be.

The GOP find hypocrisy expedient and a recent "debate" is a case in point. All GOPcandidates all but bowed low to praise Herr Bush who has now outspent Ronald Reagan with even less good, Keynesian effect! Reagan had been our biggest spending liberal, tripling the national debt, running up historically high deficits, doubling the size of the Federal Bureaucracy. None of it worked as planned because none of it benefited working Americans. Reagan had in mind "extending the traditional functions of government" but only in order to benefit the wealthy and the corporate.

Even the GOP cannot ignore the effect that the war against Iraq has had on the US economy. But, as John Dean points out, business folk, normally considered the GOP base, are just as fed up with the war as are most other, normal Americans. No one can now deny the fact that the war against Iraq has very nearly defeated the US economy, now on the brink of economic collapse. Google the title: "Terrorism is always worse under GOP Regimes". That was originally my article and it would appear that it has gone "viral". I am grateful that those who have graciously published it on hundreds, if not thousands of blogs and other sites, are kind enough to link back to the original which is parked right here on this cowboy's ranch. Let us hope that another irrefutable truth goes viral: the Republican party is bad for a good economy!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Why the CIA is the World's Number One Terrorist Organization

The CIA. itself a ruthless, terrorist organization inspires terrorism in response. In some cases, notably the CIA and al Qaeda, the relationship between the CIA and terrorism is symbiotic. The CIA has perpetrated an "American Holocaust", the deaths of some 6 million people from its inception to the year 1987. As Long as the CIA Exists, the US will never be safe from terrorism.
CIA operations follow the same recurring script. First, American business interests abroad are threatened by a popular or democratically elected leader. The people support their leader because he intends to conduct land reform, strengthen unions, redistribute wealth, nationalize foreign-owned industry, and regulate business to protect workers, consumers and the environment. So, on behalf of American business, and often with their help, the CIA mobilizes the opposition. First it identifies right-wing groups within the country (usually the military), and offers them a deal: "We'll put you in power if you maintain a favorable business climate for us." The Agency then hires, trains and works with them to overthrow the existing government (usually a democracy).

--Steve Kangas, A Timeline of CIA Atrocities

Pakistan is a case in point.
Since 9/11, the Bush administration has been propping up Musharraf's military regime with $3.6 billion in economic aid from the US and a US-sponsored consortium, not to mention $900 million in military aid and the postponement of overdue debt repayments totaling $13.5 billion. But now the administration is debating whether Musharraf has become too dependent on Islamic extremist political parties in Pakistan to further US interests, and whether he should be pressured to permit the return of two exiled former prime ministers, Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif, who have formed an electoral alliance to challenge him in presidential elections scheduled for next year.

--Pakistan: Friend or Foe? The US shouldn't prop up President Musharraf's military regime, Selig S. Harrison

The late Benazir Bhutto revealed the truth before she was brutally gunned down in the streets of Karachi: US policy causes world terrorism. She died before she could tell the rest of the story.
When the United States aligns with dictatorships and totalitarian regimes, it compromises the basic democratic principles of its foundation -- namely, life, liberty and justice for all. Dictatorships such as Musharraf's suppress individual rights and freedoms and empower the most extreme elements of society. Oppressed citizens, unable to represent themselves through other means, often turn to extremism and religious fundamentalism.

Benazir Bhutto, A False Choice for Pakistan

A favorite CIA tactic is the CIA "front".
The May 12 terrorist attacks on the al Hamra, Jadawal and Vinnell compounds in the Saudi Arabian capital, Riyadh, which killed more than 90 people, were not merely assaults on “symbols” of the imperialist West. The bombers were also intent on weakening the rule of Saudi royal family.

While the timing of the bombings in Saudi Arabia and in other countries — just hours before US Secretary of State Colin Powell arrived in Saudi Arabia — suggested a coordinated assault on US targets, the bombings in Riyadh were targeted at key props of the reactionary regime.

All three Saudi Arabian targets were associated with Saudi Arabia's role as a US client state: residential compounds housing mainly expatriates working in the country, the offices of the Vinnell Corporation and the residences of its employees.

Vinnell, founded in California in 1931, first gained a foothold in Saudi Arabia in 1975. An article by Matt Gaul in the June 1998 Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review, revealed that it was the culmination of a close relationship between the corporation, the US military and Washington's intelligence agencies. This relationship stretched back to the end of World War II, when the US government used the company to ship supplies to the China's counter-revolutionary party, the Kuomintang.

During the 1950s and '60s, Vinnell constructed US military airfields in Japan, Okinawa, Taiwan, Thailand and southern Vietnam. According to Gaul, it was during this period that Albert Vinnell, the corporation's founder, “offered his staff's services to the [CIA], and several CIA agents used employment with Vinnell as cover for operations in Africa and the Middle East”.

-- Rohan Pearce, CIA front targeted in terrorist attacks, 28 May 2003

How does the CIA do it?
It uses every trick in the book: propaganda, stuffed ballot boxes, purchased elections, extortion, blackmail, sexual intrigue, false stories about opponents in the local media, infiltration and disruption of opposing political parties, kidnapping, beating, torture, intimidation, economic sabotage, death squads and even assassination. These efforts culminate in a military coup, which installs a right-wing dictator. The CIA trains the dictator’s security apparatus to crack down on the traditional enemies of big business, using interrogation, torture and murder. The victims are said to be "communists," but almost always they are just peasants, liberals, moderates, labor union leaders, political opponents and advocates of free speech and democracy. Widespread human rights abuses follow.

--Steve Kangas, A Timeline of CIA Atrocities

The CIA uses all those methods to install dictators like Musharraf, whom it most certainly trained. The CIA is ruthless in its on-going efforts to eliminate with torture and murder, if necessary, all opposition to the interests of American imperialists. Saddam Hussein was among the dictators propped up by the US, the CIA specifically. Saddam ran afoul of Bush Sr by opposing efforts by the Bush regime to keep the price of oil high. The transcript of US Ambassador April Glaspie's interview with Hussein on the eve of his invasion of Kuwait proves conclusively that Hussein had been set up by the master spy --George Bush Sr. The CIAs allegiance to the US oil industry is overt and is most certainly at the very heart of well-founded suspicions about the CIA, Texas oil barons, and JFK. Dealy Plaza is said to have been the nexus of all three!

The origins of Bush's war in Iraq may be found in the Arab Oil embargo of the 1970s.
Three decades ago, in the throes of the energy crisis, Washington's hawks conceived of a strategy for US control of the Persian Gulf's oil. Now, with the same strategists firmly in control of the White House, the Bush administration is playing out their script for global dominance.

In the geopolitical vision driving current US policy toward Iraq, the key to national security is global hegemony -- dominance over any and all potential rivals. To that end, the United States must not only be able to project its military forces anywhere, at any time. It must also control key resources, chief among them oil -- and especially Gulf oil.

--Robert Dreyfuss, Mother Jones

JFK promised to "smash the CIA into a thousand pieces". Bill Clinton, on the 50th anniversary of "the company", defended it with an absurdity that one might have expected from the GOP! Americans, Clinton said, don't know or understand what the CIA does and should, therefore, lay off!

Our not knowing what the CIA is up to is precisely the problem. Bill Clinton is as dead wrong on this issue as Barack Obama is dead wrong about Ronald Reagan. Both positions are premised upon the idea that the American people are stupid and those that are not ought to be! The fact is: the CIA is out of control and they will continue to get away with it as long as the American people are either ignorant, kept in the dark, or both! Because the CIA is unaccountable. it remains a cancerous source of unchecked corruption and most certainly the inspiration for generations of American hating terrorists who will fight back in kind!

Much has been written about the CIA’s operations, [The Modus Operandi of the CIA] by insiders and outsiders. One insider who has chronicled what he witnessed in the CIA is Ralph McGehee. He worked for the CIA from 1952 until 1977 and now writes about intelligence matters, notably the book Deadly Deceits -- My 25 years in the CIA (New York: Sheridan Square Press, 1983). He has compiled a computer data base on CIA activities. Persons interested may write to him at: 422 Arkansas Ave., Herndon, VA 22070. (See .) Here are some excerpts of what he has written:
“ is essential to provide background on the scope and nature of its worldwide operations. Between 1961 and 1975 the Agency conducted 900 major or sensitive operations, and thousands of lesser covert actions. The majority of its operations were propaganda, election or paramilitary. Countries of major concern, such as Indonesia in the early 1960s, were usually subjected to the CIA's most concerted attention. Critics of the CIA have aptly described the mainstays of such attention: "discrediting political groups... by forged documents that may be attributed to them. . . ," faking "communist weapon shipments,'' capturing communist documents and then inserting forgeries prepared by the Agency's Technical Services Division.

--Ralph McGehee

Much of the rest of the world knows the truth about the CIA; Americans are kept in the dark. The media dare not tell the truth about the CIA and the Bush administration, in particular, is complicit. Rare media outlets that dare tell the truth are demonized. "Liberal" activist Steve Kangas, for example, turned up dead just outside the office of Richard Mellon Scaife, the multi-billionaire about whom it is no stretch to say he coordinated and bankrolled the "vast right wing conspiracy" to impeach, remove and, in other ways, smear Bill Clinton.

As more documents are declassified and the hidden history is made painfully clear, the CIA’s predictable response is compared to the Medieval Church’s oppressive response to the Scientific Revolution. Indeed, there are many things about the CIAs relationship to the world around it that are medieval: intolerance, fear, repression, secrecy and torture. Initially, the CIA would merely harass American writers but foreign writers were tortured and/or murdered. With the death of Steve Kangas, one wonders if the CIA now operates against the domestic media. What's next? An inquisition?

The CIA, whose very is name is enough to inspire generations of "terrorists", has outlived its usefulness. The time has come to abolish the CIA --to smash it into a thousand pieces! Its leadership should be dismissed and investigated. Where there is probable cause, CIA members should be investigated and tried for crimes against humanity.

The CIA: The World's Number One Terrorist Organization

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Russia Arms the "Doomsday Bomb"?

Recently, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that a US attack on Iran would be considered an attack on Russia. Earlier, a Chinese sub popped up undetected in the midst of the US 5th Fleet. As tensions mount, Wired Magazine tells us that a Russian "doomsday bomb" is still armed.
Fearing that a sneak attack by American submarine-launched missiles might take Moscow out in thirteen minutes, the Soviet leadership had authorized the construction of an automated communications network, reinforced to withstand a nuclear strike. At its heart was a computer system similar to the one in Dr Strangelove. Its codename was Perimetr. It went fully operational in January 1985. It is still in place. Its job is to monitor whether there have been nuclear detonations on Russian territory and to check whether communications channels with the Kremlin have been severed. If the answer to both questions is “yes” then the computer will conclude that the country is under attack and activate its nuclear arsenal. All that is then needed is final human approval from a command post buried deep underground. It would be a brave officer, adds Smith, who, having been cut off from his superiors in the Kremlin, could ignore the advice of such a supposedly foolproof system.


We all face the prospect that, if Russia were ever attacked, its strategic nuclear warheads could be launched by a computer system designed and built in the late 1970s.

Ron Rosenbaum, Slate, [quoted in Wired:Soviet Doomsday Device Still Armed and Ready]

A giant cobalt bomb capable of making the earth uninhabitable was made famous in the Stanley Kubrick film: Dr. Strangelove. [The clips below playback in sequence, a precis of the motion picture!]

We'll Meet Again??

Kubrick blurred fact and film fiction. Not only scenarios but devices dealt with by Kubrick had been classified.

We now have good reason to ask ourselves if we are safer now than during the height of the cold war. I don't think we are! Bush moved the countdownclock to nuclear annihilation much closer when he promised that the US would join an Israeli nuclear strike on Iran. As relations between Russia and the US seemed to warm for a brief while, America's right wing struggled throughout the Reagan era to find another phantom menace, another demon around which it might rally the populace. Sadly --our enemies are of our own making. The GOP would literally be nothing without them.
Sober PhDs are behind these thoughts. Citing the hazard of genetically engineered viruses, eminent astrophysicist Stephen Hawking has said, "I don't think the human race will survive the next thousand years." Martin Rees, the knighted British astronomer, agrees; he gives us a 50-50 chance. Serious thinkers such as Pulitzer Prize winner Laurie Garrett, author of The Coming Plague, and Bill Joy, who wrote Wired's own 2000 article "Why the Future Doesn't Need Us," warn of techno-calamity.

--Gregg Easterbrook, We're All Gonna Die! Wired

The real enemy has always been the politicians. Their power derives from the manifestation of nightmares!

This update from Crooks and Liars:

The Wall Street Journal ran an article last week (subscription req’d) that Bush was using an investigation into a 1994 terrorist attack on a Jewish Community Center in Argentina as a way to continue to strain and maintain pressure on Iran.

The only problem? There’s no real evidence that Iran was involved in the bombing:

(I)t is impossible to avoid the conclusion that the case against Iran over the AMIA bombing has been driven from the beginning by US enmity toward Iran, not by a desire to find the real perpetrators.

Evidence? We don’t need no stinkin’ evidence. Nobody could anticipate the president initiating a pre-emptive war against a sovereign nation on trumped up evidence, could they? Oh…wait…