March 7th, 2014
Wait a minute...
When is the USA giving Hawaii back its sovereignty?
The USA's crimes against national sovereignty are so numerous and so recent
that the larynx it should have to call for justice has been surgically excised.
The Washington hypocrites: "Hey! No fair taking a page from our playbook!!"
By: Norm dePlume
March 6th, 2014
This could change everything.
Got your attention yet?
It's untraceable. It's digital. It's decentralized.
March 4th, 2014
"As they visit Kiev this week, British Foreign Secretary William Hague and US Secretary of State John Kerry are being reminded that their countries signed a 1994 treaty guaranteeing Ukraine’s 'independence and sovereignty'."
I haven't heard much at all about this, here in France24 by Thomas Hubert.
As they visit Kiev this week, British Foreign Secretary William Hague and US Secretary of State John Kerry are being reminded that their countries signed a 1994 treaty guaranteeing Ukraine’s "independence and sovereignty".
Comments from US and British officials on Ukraine are under particular scrutiny as both countries signed the Budapest Memorandum with Ukraine and Russia in 1994, affirming “their obligation to refrain from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of Ukraine”.
The pro-European leaders of last month’s Ukrainian revolution have invoked the 20-year-old pact to lobby the US and the UK for support. Russian President “Vladimir Putin is fully conscious that by declaring war (on Ukraine), he is also declaring war on the guarantors of our security, the United States and Britain,” former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko said in a statement on her website on Monday.
Under the treaty, the signatories offered Ukraine “security assurances” in exchange for its adhesion to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, whereby Kiev handed over its nuclear warheads to Moscow in the wake of the Soviet Union’s collapse.
Yet according to Stephen MacFarlane, a professor of international relations specialised on the former Soviet Union at St Anne’s College, Oxford, Ukrainian leaders are also preparing for a scenario under which US and British involvement would remain verbal.
Despite Yulia Tymoshenko’s “war on the United States and Britain” rhetoric, the Budapest Memorandum offers no guarantee of intervention. “It gives signatories justification if they take action, but it does not force anyone to act in Ukraine,” Stephen MacFarlane told FRANCE 24. “[US Secretary of State John] Kerry’s harsh remarks on what is going on in Ukraine indicate a degree of resolve, but at the end of the day, what can you do?”
It seems so; this treaty can be safely set aside, at least according to Stephen MacFarlene.
The treaty is HERE.
March 3rd, 2014
She recently attended a medical seminar in San Diego. She told me about a speech that two Obamacare people gave.
She said the speech drew a huge crowd. Her gues was there were 500 people in the lecture hall.
And that, by what she could tell, that the only pro Obamacare people in the hall were the ones giving the speech.
After the speech, they opened the floor to questions, and every question started out with the serious ramifications to care that they are already seeing in their hospitals.
After a few questions, the speakers cut off the discussion and left. My daughter felt that the crowd was in no mood to listen to them, and they sensed it as well.
This seminar included doctors, specialists, anesthesiologists, nurses, etc., and when my daughter wasn't at a scheduled event, the subject of Obamacare came up.
One big thing, it seems. Hospitals fear they will not be paid for caring for chronically sick patients because Obamacare only pays for results. So, rather than go thru extraordinary measures to save someone's life, they figure that the person is just shit outta luck.
Some personnel she talked to believed it was happening at their hospitals already.
March 3rd, 2014
There's a fallacy afoot in the efforts to blame President Obama for the crisis in the Ukraine. It goes like this: because American's hand on the global tiller is unsteady and President Obama failed to enforce his "red line" in Syria, Russian President Vladimir Putin feels empowered to threaten and perhaps make war with the Ukraine because he does not fear repercussions. Moreover, by letting Russia invent the solution to Syria's transgression, Putin has earned some political capital that he feels he can spend. There's a veneer of plausibility on these allegations. The President's refusal to endorse some type of kinetic, military punishment against Bashir Assad stands as a moral failure to many, and could conceivably have furhter opened the aperture for murderous misbehavior by other tyrants. And Russia enjoyed its (rare) moment in the sun as the international peace-broker.
But the "if we had only done this" school of foreign policy can easily hang itself by its own noose. The reason why President Obama did not intervene in Syria have more to do with domestic and international norms collected after the disaster of the Iraq War. For the sake of argument, it is more plausible to assume that Americans would be less opposed to military action in Middle Eastern counties if the torment of Iraq were not on their minds. Also plausible: had the military not learned about modern Middle Eastern adventurism and had generals not developed their own (probably correct) biases against one-off "signaling" military strikes outside the realm of counter-terrorism, Obama's military advisers might well have forecast different outcomes had he decided to punish Assad by, say, airstrikes against the command and control structure, or by a bigger commitment to Syrian rebels.
One undeniable truth: Iraq weakened the U.S. more than anything done since. Maybe Obama overlearned its lessons; maybe we all have. But nothing empowered Vladimir Putin more than America's squandering of moral standing in the early part of this century.
I also find the Ukraine and Syria to be different genotypically and phenotypically. Syria was never part of the Soviet empire. The Ukraine was a critical part of it. There is no equivalent Crimean problem in Syria; the duly, if unappealingly elected President of the Ukraine, has asked for Russia's help here. (Yes, we might think that Viktor Yanukovych's election was not legitimate, but that is not a very solid principle upon which to base a recognition of legitimacy; if it were, America really should never attend U.N. generally assemblies and ought to withdraw from half of the treaties it has negotiated.) Crimea has also directly appealed for Russia's military assistance.
None of this is to say that Putin faces a clear path forward. Any post-Sochi halo will disappear the moment Russian troops kill innocent Ukrainians. The West will regroup against Russia for the duration of the conflict. Putin's domestic political standing is at stake, too. War would be disastrous, but Russians don't want to lose the Ukraine to the West, and they are particularly protective of ethnic Russians in the Crimea. What I don't know, in other words, is whether the United States's protests would have mattered any more to Putin if Obama had somehow used the U.S. military to punish Syria.
the author is right to connect our painful experience in iraq as a factor influencing our country's decisions. while obama has not shied away from actively using the military, he has chosen to stay far away from getting embroiled in nation-building or anything of the sort. and to that end, the author is dead-ass wrong in suggesting that we had to attack assad to defend some moral high-ground, which doesn't exist. (besides the fact that we would've only strengthened ISIS by attacking assad.)
all said, russia's choice to invade and potentially annex a portion of ukraine cannot go without consequence. be it missile defense in poland/georgia, admission of new states into NATO, removal from international forums (ex. G8), etc...
March 3rd, 2014
Personally, I don't because she still seems to be vibrant & "all together"
However, Reagans age & McCains age were a big part of the debate. Will the questions of Hillarys age be viewed the same as it was for Reagan & McCain, or will it be viewed because of the gender?
Will questions about her health be brought up (remember the concussion that was pretty serious) or the "she was too distraught to appear on the Sunday shows" that Susan Rice appeared on instead,, then raising the question of toughness to be POTUS?
There again, I believe she's tough enough. Are these legitimate questions that are sure to come up?
August 4th, 2013
The best argument against politics is the results. Our values are reflected in our culture and in our politics. Those values lead to certain results. The following are lists that I think demonstrate the values and results of the politics of my state, Alabama, and other states with similar political cultures. All these lists come from wikipedia.org except where noted.
(image from wikimedia: poverty rate)
July 31st, 2013
I put together this little trip down memory lane mostly through articles that appeared on Reuters news services on various dates staring in March of 2011 and running through July 2013.
The midterm elections of 2010 saw a rise in the Tea party Movement and takeover of the House by Republicans. The United States was due to hit the debt ceiling in the summer of 2011, which was perfect timing for an absurd showdown that put US credit in danger for the sake of extracting political concessions on spending.
June 30th, 2013
According to a witness at the Zimmerman trial, the victim referred to George Zimmerman as “a creepy ass cracker” moments before he was shot and killed.
Most of the attention regarding that statement has focused on the racial slur “cracker”. To me the more interesting word is “creepy”. This both describes Zimmerman's behavior and the victim's response to it.
Creepy: “Of or producing a sensation of uneasiness or fear, as of things crawling on one's skin”.
April 30th, 2013
So maybe they didn't break an actual record, but it was the fastest Congress has moved to accomplish anything since 2009. Last week, much to the amazement of budget chicken hawks, the sequester brought forth an actual consequence: flight delays.
The FAA, in order to stay within new budget guidelines brought about by a piece of intentionally stupid legislation (so stupid in fact that the whole point of it was to be as stupid as possible so that Congress would never allow it to be enacted), furloughed air traffic controllers causing inconvenience to people who apparently prefer deficits to inconvenience. Within days Congress passed legislation and the President signed it.