Kill List

obama vietnam memorial

he New York Times recently published an extensive story about the Obama administration’s secret “Kill List” that is used for selecting targets for strikes by unmanned drones. It has been clear for some time now that President Obama is making far more use of such drones that President Bush did, even as Obama systematically winds down [...]

License to Kill

obama holder panetta

John Peeler: It is distressing that a president who came to office as a bitter critic of abuses of presidential authority by his predecessor now takes essentially the same position as George W. Bush. Power that is unchecked and operates in secret is always dangerous to democracy.

Shock and Awe versus Aw Shucks: Taking Out the Bad Guys

Gaddafi_wide

John Peeler: Obama has set a major contrast in style and strategy with George W. Bush: he does not grandstand, he does not order massive military interventions. He doesn’t question Bush’s commitments, but he set up the rules of engagement and the negotiating positions to allow him to dial them back.

If Al Gore Had Won

Brent Budowsky: Stay tuned. I predict the day will come when we will know for sure what President Gore would do, when President Gore does it.

The Ghost of Geronimo

geronimo

Marcus Daniel: What’s most immediately stunning about the decision to call the mission to hunt down Bin Laden “Geronimo,” is its sheer stupidity and insensitivity. How could this happen? What fool suggested this code word?

Tax-Deductible Invasions

global cop

Walter Brasch: If 60 million Americans want war, and the cost is a mere $300 million a week, then each supporter would have about $5 per week deducted from his or her paycheck.

Obama Returns U.S. Politics to 1995

bill clinton newt gingrich

Randy Shaw: Republican policies that drove the U.S. economy into the deepest ditch since the Great Depression are given equal credibility with Obama’s. It is as if the past fifteen years and the 2008 elections never occurred. How did this happen?

So, Did Anything Unusual Happen Over Last Weekend?

juan_williams

Robert Letcher: With all the violence and contempt that seemed “in the air”, it was starting to feel like some “Tucson” was bound to happen, but there wasn’t enough actionable information: no “when”, no “where”. Nor were resources available to “look into the situation”, as they had been to President Bush.

Origins of the Enthusiasm Gap

reverse donkey

Robert Reich: Whatever the outcome of the upcoming midterm elections, the activist phase of the Obama administration has likely come to a close. The President may have a fight on his hands even to hold on to what he’s already achieved because his legislative successes have been large enough to fuel strong opposition but not big enough to strengthen his support. The result could be disastrous for him and congressional Democrats.

Hate Crimes Legislation’s Torturous Path

matthew sheparad memorial

Carl Matthes: As you may remember, 21 year-old Matthew was pistol-whipped, bludgeoned and lashed to a fence post, just off an isolated rural road, during one of Wyoming’s cold, lonely October nights. He was left for dead by his killers. Eighteen hours later Matthew was discovered still alive, but in a coma. “I mistook him for a scarecrow,” said 18 year-old Aaron Kreifels. Five days later he died. In 1998 America, Matthew was just one of 33 anti-gay murders.

Friday Feedback: Terrorist Threats Not “Free Speech”

Friday Feedback: When Sarah Palin tells her fans to “reload,” when she uses rifle scopes to depict pictorially her political enemies, when her rhetoric in Tea Bag rallies is filled with gun/violence imagery, one needn’t wonder for too long if this might have an effect in encouraging an extremist or two to shoot the man the majority of us voted into office. You don’t have to have a psychology degree to know the power of mob “groupthink” and how it can easily spur people to violence. History and research prove the deadly effectiveness of such “mob psychology.”

Trust in the GOP’s Dearth of Experience

Tina Dupuy

Tina Dupuy: When Republicans warn that a policy is a job-killer – Americans should listen. If any group of lawmakers and thinkers know about killing jobs it’s the Grand Old Party. In 2008, the final year of the Bush Administration, after two terms of careless deregulation implemented with bastardized pseudo-free market battle cries, the economy lost 2.6 million jobs. An annual job loss not equaled since 1945. When it comes to job extermination the GOP’s display case has a full assortment of trophies. So, of course Republicans are now the best authority on how not to kill jobs. Basically, don’t do what they did.

History: A Rovian Rewrite

tom-degan

Tom Degan: It’s going to be an absolute scream in the next few years watching the Bush Mob try to rewrite history with the flood of books that are sure to come out. The latest screed by Rove is merely the tip of the iceberg. They have quite a chore ahead of them no doubt. Putting a positive spin on the worst administration in American history? I imagine something that tricky would be the equivalent of trying to put a smiley face on a decomposing pig:

Civic Discourse Jumps the Shark

Debate

Adam Eran: When the nation’s most trusted newsman is Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart, it’s no surprise that sensible debate about public policy is at least hard to find. Lately, however, such policy debates have become positively surreal.

Name That Decade: the ’00s, the Whatever Decade

Hopelessness

Great pessimism during economic busts is as characteristically American as great optimism during boom times. The oh-ohs’ whateverism is less fleeting and thus more dangerous. A culture of denial, disengagement, dissociation is dysfunctional. We need a culture of engagement and responsibility, even with all our traumas, distractions and high-tech toys.

Who Is Better Off for All America’s Wars?

Children-at-War

The Pentagon has covered the globe with 1,000 military bases for “defense” and is busy devising ingenious ways to attack the earth from space, develop germ warfare and threaten and control any and every other country with its 11 mobile nuclear navies.

Iraq: Take Yes for an Answer

long-goodbye

The more we insist on staying when we’re clearly not wanted, the more we reinforce the widely held Iraqi suspicion that we really intend a long-term, colonial-style occupation.

From Analog To Digital: Nothing’s Free Anymore

tied2tv

Last week, the federal government moved forth with allowing public airwaves to be transitioned from the analog transmission to the newer, advanced digital forms of communication transmission. Now understand, we all must realize that everything must change. NOTHING remains the same. The advancement of technology has changed everything about television, making them larger, thinner and [...]

President Obama Repudiates Bush Cheney Policy

In an uncharacteristically confrontational manner President Barack Obama stated that he fundamentally disagrees with Dick Cheney’s notion that we can’t reconcile our core values with our national security interests.  The President went on to say that he was surprised at Cheney’s defense of torture policies.  But constitutional law scholar, Jonathan Turley says the President doesn’t [...]

Hypocrisy in Government

broken-liberty

Recent statements by President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, admitting that they were going to use the economic crisis to get other things done, is at least surprisingly honest. But it is also hypocritical. Remember when some of these same people criticized George W. Bush [...]

Obama Commits to “Remaking America”

obama-smiling

Barack Obama’s Inaugural Address was not his greatest or most passionate speech, but it was likely his most purposeful. Moving at a faster pace than usual, our new President sought to instill a sense of purpose in Americans, calling for a “new era of responsibility – a recognition, upon the part of every American, that [...]

Pardon Me, Scooter?

elivira-arellano

On July 2, 2007 George W. Bush commuted the sentence of convicted felon and former top White House staffer Scooter Libby for his convictions on five felony counts of perjury, false statements, and obstruction of justice. He didn’t pardon Libby but, instead, issued a Grant of Executive Clemency before Scooter Libby even served a single [...]

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