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KN4M 01-30-04

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  • robalini@aol.com
    Please send as far and wide as possible. Thanks, Robert Sterling Editor, The Konformist http://www.konformist.com An open letter to my fellow Amurkans By D.
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 30, 2004
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      Please send as far and wide as possible.

      Thanks,
      Robert Sterling
      Editor, The Konformist
      http://www.konformist.com

      An open letter to my fellow Amurkans
      By D. Grant Haynes
      Online Journal Contributing Writer

      January 29, 2004 - With a few rare exceptions - a statistically
      insignificant microcosm at best - you are an obnoxious and
      superficial people with scant redeeming virtues.

      The vast majority of you are ignorant, insular, self-centered,
      hedonistic pleasure seekers who believe that the earth and all its
      myriad of inhabitants owe you special dispensations and exceptional
      privileges because you are "Amurkans" ordained by God to rule the
      temporal realm.

      On the whole and as a group, you know next to nothing about any other
      culture. Yet, in your naiveté you imagine your world and your
      lifestyle to be superior to all the others you've never seen or
      experienced.

      And you don't mind seeing your tax dollars spent to force that
      lifestyle onto those others with bombs and missiles if necessary.

      You feign great valor, assertiveness and a determination to establish
      fortress-like security. Your latest auto models even mimic the
      contours of armored military vehicles.

      And your overbearing and overindulged offspring enroll in tae kwon do
      classes, wear battle fatigue print jeans, sport military crew cuts,
      and play kick-Arab-ass computer war games in your leisure time.

      Yet, in truth, you are soft, pampered, frightened, insecure and
      neurotic; uncertain of yourselves, your values, your health, the
      future of your nation, or the validity of your self-indulgent
      decadence.

      A real or imagined "terrist" could say "boo" and you'd all
      collectively urinate upon yourselves.

      You live in abject fear, notwithstanding your "No Fear" tee shirts
      and bumper stickers.

      You fear "terrists" from without spawned for the most part from a
      century of American imperialism, and you fear criminals from within
      born of your own cruel social inequities and gun laws.

      You have no peace in your SUVs and palatial compounds on the hill,
      and "stress reduction" clinics multiply exponentially with the strip
      malls that defile your increasingly asphalted landscapes.

      The spam being forced onto Internet users in America today is
      sufficient indictment in itself of your sick culture.

      Your men are apparently all insecure about their masculinity because
      impotency medications and penis enlargement schemes are the major
      hucksters' business on the Net at this time.

      And running a close second in the spam waves are pain pills, weight
      loss products and human growth hormone elixirs.

      You are susceptible to any siren song promising to arrest the
      inexorable aging process - a human metamorphosis cultures more at
      peace with themselves accept gracefully.

      Your frenetic consumption-oriented lifestyle evidently lends no peace
      of mind because online tranquilizer sales in this hypocritical nation
      of excesses - one that makes legitimate acquisition of such drugs
      through a physician next to impossible - are booming in cyberspace
      too.

      Nor can one forget the incessant Internet porn spam deluge in a
      nation possessed of more church edifices and moralizing preachers per
      capita than any on earth. The porn would not continue were it not
      highly profitable in your society of lying hypocrites.

      By way of summation, the vast majority of you appear to be shallow,
      swaggering, hypocritical, flag-waving jackasses with minimal merit at
      best.

      I would be happy to part company with the lot of you tomorrow to
      spend my remaining years in a more sensible society.

      *****

      When Mikey met Wesley: Clueless in America
      Mickey Z.
      Online Journal Contributing Writer

      January 29, 2004 - General Wesley Clark is a war criminal. Filmmaker
      Michael Moore is clueless. This is a love story.

      Clueless Mikey Moore: "I have met Clark and spoken to him on a number
      of occasions."

      War Criminal Wes: "There's no requirement to have any doctrine here.
      I mean this is simply a long-standing right of the United States and
      other nations to take the actions they deem necessary in their self-
      defense. Every president has deployed forces as necessary to take
      action. He's done so without multilateral support if necessary. He's
      done so in advance of conflict if necessary." (Told to the Committee
      On Armed Services at the U.S. House of Representatives on September
      26, 2002.)

      Clueless Mikey Moore: "I have to tell you I have found [War Criminal
      Wes] to be the real deal."

      War Criminal Wes: "We've struck at [Slobodan Milosevic's] TV stations
      and transmitters because they're as much a part of his military
      machine prolonging and promoting this conflict as his army and
      security forces." (Jim Naureckas of FAIR explains: "Clark's logic is
      exactly the same as that of the death squad commander who orders the
      assassination of a journalist or a publisher whose opposition
      newspaper supports the goals of a guerrilla movement. The targeting
      of the studio was a war crime, perhaps the most indisputable of
      several war crimes committed by NATO in its war against Yugoslavia.")

      Clueless Mikey Moore: "[War Criminal Wes is] someone whom I'm
      convinced all of you would like both as a person and as the
      individual leading this country."

      War Criminal Wes: In his book, "Fighting Modern War," he called 78
      days of US/NATO bombing: "coercive diplomacy, the use of armed forces
      to impose the political will of the NATO nations on the Federal
      Republic of Yugoslavia, or more specifically, on Serbia."

      Clueless Mikey Moore: "[War Criminal Wes] is an honest, decent,
      honorable man."

      War Criminal Wes: According to the Washington Post, at war planning
      meetings, he'd "rise out of his seat and slap the table" to
      yell: "I've got to get the maximum violence out of this campaign-now!"

      Clueless Mikey Moore: "[War Criminal Wes] would be a breath of fresh
      air in the White House."

      (ACTION: Learn more about Wesley Clark's war crimes through Jared
      Israel's interview with journalist Greg Elich and then contact War
      Criminal Wes. To tell Michael Moore to get a clue, email him at
      mmflint@....)

      Mickey Z. is the author of two upcoming books: "A Gigantic Mistake:
      Articles and Essays for Your Intellectual Self-Defense" (Prime Books)
      and "Seven Deadly Spins: Exposing the Lies Behind War Propaganda"
      (Common Courage Press). He can be reached at mzx2@....

      *****

      Tuesday, January 27, 2004

      MEDIA MATTERS
      Cartoonist calls Condi Rice 'murderer' - again
      This time 'Boondocks' creator levels charge on national TV
      By Paul Sperry
      WorldNetDaily.com

      WASHINGTON - He did it again, but this time on national TV.

      Aaron McGruder, a black syndicated cartoonist who's getting his own
      prime-time TV series on Fox, called National Security Adviser
      Condoleezza Rice "a murderer" for her role in the Iraq war.

      He made the remark as a guest on the nationally syndicated TV
      show "America's Black Forum," hosted by syndicated columnist and Fox
      News contributor Juan Williams.

      The creator of the popular "Boondocks" comic strip reportedly caused
      some discomfort at an anniversary dinner for the Nation magazine here
      last month when he told the mostly anti-war audience, "I've met
      Condoleezza Rice and called her a murderer to her face."

      In a Sunday broadcast of the "Black Forum" show, McGruder, speaking
      from Los Angeles, repeated the epithet, arguing that Rice, as one of
      the administration's "biggest hawks," advised the president on a war
      that led to the "slaughter of innocent people in Iraq."

      Some of the black panelists assembled in the Washington studio winced
      at the remarks.

      Conservative syndicated columnist Armstrong Williams rebuked the
      cartoonist, whose strip is syndicated in more than 250 newspapers.

      "I can't get over the fact you labeled Miss Rice a murderer," he
      said.

      The low-key McGruder, 29, asserted that he has a right to his
      opinion.

      "She's a murderer because I believe she's a murderer," he said
      coolly.

      NAACP chairman Julian Bond, another panelist, wrote it off
      to "satire," but added, smiling, "I agree with his politics."

      Late last year, McGruder made Rice's love life the topic of his
      comic.

      "Maybe if there was a man in the world who Condoleezza truly loved,
      she wouldn't be so hell-bent to destroy it," one of his "Boondocks"
      characters speculates in a strip.

      The Washington Post pulled the series on Rice, which ran some five
      days. The Cincinnati Enquirer dropped the strip altogether.

      McGruder, who voted for Ralph Nader in 2000, claims Rice, also black,
      asked him to write her into his strip.

      "Boondocks," a hip-hop version of Doonesbury, is distributed by
      Universal Press Syndicate.

      McGruder, who graduated from the University of Maryland with an
      African-American studies degree, has written a best-selling coffee-
      table collection of his strips called "A Right to be Hostile."

      He's reportedly developing with Sony a prime-time animated series
      based on "Boondocks" for Fox. It's slated for the fall.


      Paul Sperry is Washington bureau chief for WorldNetDaily and author
      of "Crude Politics."

      *****

      Get ready for the Iraq investigation outrages
      First the Hutton whitewash, next, the Fitzgerald report

      By Wayne Madsen
      Online Journal Contributing Writer

      January 29, 2004 - Lord Brian Hutton, a former Lord Chief Justice of
      Northern Ireland, and the man personally selected by British Prime
      Minister Tony Blair to investigate the alleged "suicide" of Ministry
      of Defense weapons of mass destruction expert Dr. David Kelly last
      year, has rendered his verdict on Blair and his "sexing up" a dossier
      on Iraq's capabilities to pummel London and Liverpool with a a chem-
      bio attack within a 45-minute timeframe.

      Surprise, surprise! Hutton, a lifelong Tory, found Blair, his
      communications director Alastair Campbell, and Defense Minister
      Geoffrey Hoon, innocent of leaking Kelly's name to the BBC. In fact,
      Hutton's long-awaited report blames the BBC, Kelly, and BBC reporter
      Andrew Gilligan for the whole affair. Blair, who, a day before
      Hutton's report, barely won a vote in the House of Commons (and only
      survived with the help of Hutton's fellow Tories), claimed total
      vindication and immediately demanded an apology from all those who,
      in the past, questioned his veracity.

      Make no mistake about it, Hutton was picked by Blair to engage in a
      whitewash because of Hutton's own history of sycophantically shin-
      humping the conservative power structure in the United Kingdom.
      Hutton was a neocon long before the term became vogue.

      Championing causes that would have made the neocon rags "The
      Spectator" and "National Review" quite proud, Hutton attacked a
      fellow judge for a favorable ruling on the arrest in Britain of
      Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet for crimes against humanity; he
      derided that same judge's links to Amnesty International; he said
      that ex-MI5 agent David Shayler's revealing of state secrets could
      never be in the public interest, and while serving as a judge in
      Northern Ireland, was considered by Catholics of being in the hip
      pocket of right-wing Protestant extremists. Hutton capped off his
      judicial career by giving Blair a big wet kiss on the lips. Perhaps
      Hutton was promised the job of the next Governor of the Cayman
      Islands or the British Virgin Islands. More the better when Blair
      assumes a directorship for the Carlyle Group and has to rely on his
      old judge buddy to help move billions through Grand Cayman or Tortola
      bank front company accounts to oil companies in Iraq and Libya.

      Many parallels were drawn between leaking Dr. Kelly's name by Number
      10 Downing Street and the White House's leaking of the name of
      Ambassador Joseph Wilson's wife's name to neocon reporter Robert
      Novak. In the case of Kelly, that leak ended in his suspicious death.
      In the case of Wilson's wife, a covert CIA agent, the leak was in
      retaliation for Wilson's conclusion that George W. Bush's statement
      that Iraq tried to buy uranium from Niger was false. As a result of
      that leak, Wilson's wife's life was put in danger and an entire CIA
      front operation - Brewster Jennings and Associates - was rolled up.
      But look for the neocons to try and clear Bush, Dick Cheney, Scooter
      Libby, and Karl Rove of any wrongdoing in the same manner that Blair
      was cleared by Hutton.

      The Justice Department is currently investigating the Wilson leak.
      Its lead investigator, like Hutton, has been painted as a strong
      independent prosecutor. This is just plain smoke and mirrors intended
      to serve as a backdrop for yet another whitewash of crimes in high
      places. Last year, John Ashcroft (the nut case who recently accused
      Saddam Hussein of practicing alchemy through he use of evil biology
      and evil chemistry), recused himself from the Wilson leak
      investigation and appointed Patrick Fitzgerald, the US Attorney in
      Chicago as special prosecutor. The fix is in on the Wilson leak
      investigation.

      Fitzgerald is a selective prosecutor and a Republican toady for Bush
      and Ashcroft. Fitzgerald turned up the heat on former Illinois
      Governor George Ryan only after he bravely commuted the death
      sentences of his state's death row inmates. Ryan cited police and
      prosecutorial misconduct in Chicago and Springfield as a leading
      reason for his decision. So, while the Nobel Peace Prize committee
      considered Ryan for its annual prize, Ashcroft, Fitzgerald, and other
      fascist thugs within the Justice Department's hierarchy decided to go
      for a quick indictment of the former Republican governor for of all
      things - a payola scandal in Illinois. Perhaps someone shouild look
      into Ashcroft's record as governor of Missouri on such matters, after
      all, Kansas City and St. Louis politics are so clean, Ashcroft could
      have never gotten any dirty money from those places.

      So Ashcroft now has his lickspittle Fitzgerald looking into who at
      the White House leaked Wilson's wife's name to Novak. If the Hutton
      report is any indication, look for Fitzgerald to exonerate Cheney.
      Rove, Libby and company and blame the whole thing on the CIA for
      hiring Ambassador Wilson to go to Niger and Mrs. Wilson for some
      nebulous conflict of interest in her husband going there in the first
      place. It is how the neocons operate. Attack the messenger and
      practice the Big Lie. They have so much experience from the annals of
      Nazi Germany's propaganda machine to choose from and they will not
      rest until they have dusted off all the old tricks and applied them
      anew.

      David Kay, who recently left as America's chief weapons of mass
      destruction inspector in Iraq, said there was no evidence that Iraq
      had either weapons of mass destruction or programs to develop them
      prior to the U.S. invasion of the country, as alleged by Bush in his
      speeches to Congress and the United Nations. David Kay, David Kelly,
      Joe Wilson, Hans Blix, Mohamed ElBaradei, Scott Ritter, Richard
      Butler - they all said pretty much the same thing about
      Iraq: "there's no 'there' there." They also came under relentless
      attack from a slithering and well-coordinated neocon propaganda
      blitzkrieg aimed at destroying their reputations.

      It is a shame that so many well-intentioned people have been
      tarnished and destroyed by the neocon machine that surrounds Bush and
      Blair. If the Democratic candidates for president (sans neocon Joe
      Lieberman) can ever stop their fratricidal bloodletting and focus on
      getting rid of the plague that has infested our White House,
      Congress, and many federal judicial benches, they will find that
      honorable people, like those who blew the whistle on the neocon
      agenda and who have stood up to the Bush-Blair "axis of evil," are
      ready, able, and willing to help wrest control of the White House and
      Number 10 Downing Street from the purveyors of deception and war
      profiteering outrages.

      Wayne Madsen is a Washington, DC-based journalist, author, and
      columnist. He is co-author of "America's Nightmare: The Presidency of
      George Bush II."

      *****

      Will Dubya Dump Dick?
      By Jim Lobe, Inter Press Service
      January 28, 2004

      While Democratic rivals battle for the presidential nomination in a
      succession of grueling primary elections, Vice President Dick Cheney
      appears to be fighting to secure his spot on the Republican ticket
      behind President George W. Bush.

      The vice president, whose supposed moderation and 35-year Washington
      experience reassured Bush voters worried about the callowness and
      inexperience of Bush in 2000, is increasingly seen by Republican
      Party politicos as a millstone on the president's re-election chances
      in what is expected to be an extremely close race.

      The reasons are for their worries are evident. Ongoing disclosures
      about Cheney's role in the drive to war in Iraq and other
      controversial administration plans reveal him as not the much-touted
      moderate but an extremist who constantly pushed for the most radical
      policies. But more than just an extremist, Cheney is also viewed as a
      kind of eminence grise who exercises undue influence over Bush to
      further a radical agenda, a perception confirmed by recent
      revelations by former treasury secretary Paul O'Neill, who described
      Cheney as creating a "kind of praetorian guard around the president"
      that blocked out contrary views.

      In addition, Cheney's association with Halliburton, the giant
      construction and oil company he headed for much of the 1990s and that
      gobbled up billions of dollars in contracts for Iraq's postwar
      reconstruction, is also becoming a major political liability.
      Democrats in Congress and on the campaign trail are already using
      Halliburton's rhythmic, four-syllable name (HAL-li-bur-ton, HAL-li-
      bur-ton) as a mantra that neatly taps into the public's growing
      concerns overn Iraq and disgust with crony capitalism and corporate
      greed, all at the same time.

      Reports of a discreet "dump Cheney" movement, launched by intimate
      associates of Bush's father (former president George H. W. Bush),
      were already surfacing two months ago. Cheney's detractors include
      national security adviser Brent Scowcroft and former secretary of
      state James Baker, who now has a White House appointment as Bush Jr's
      personal envoy to persuade official creditors to reduce substantially
      Iraq's $110 billion foreign debt. Both men battled frequently with
      the vice president when he was defense secretary in the first Bush
      administration.

      In addition to fears about possible impact on Bush's re-election
      chances, Scowcroft and Baker have privately expressed great concern
      over Cheney's unparalleled influence over the younger Bush's foreign
      policy, and the damage that it has wreaked on U.S. relations with
      longtime allies, particularly in Europe and the Arab world.

      The underground campaign explains many of Cheney's recent actions,
      including holding unprecedented rounds of press interviews in
      January, as well as his trip this week to Switzerland and Italy
      (marking only the second time the vice president has traveled abroad
      in three years). "I think he knows that he's in trouble," said a
      prominent anti-Cheney Republican activist this week. "I don't think
      there's any other way to explain why he would sit for a puerile
      interview for the [Washington Post's] Style section. You know he
      despises that sort of thing." Cheney's travel and sudden and abundant
      press availability was noted in Tuesday's New York Times, which
      described his behavior as "a calculated election-year makeover to
      temper his hardline image at home and abroad".

      But Cheney's appearances may, in fact, have merely confirmed his
      image as a zealot. In an interview he gave National Public Radio
      (NPR) last week, Cheney not only insisted that major stockpiles of
      weapons of mass destruction (WMD) may still be found in Iraq, he also
      claimed that two semi-trailer trucks found in that country during
      last year's U.S.-led war constituted "conclusive evidence" of WMD
      programs. Both assertions were almost instantly refuted by none other
      than the administration's outgoing chief weapons inspector, David
      Kay. In a series of statements published after Cheney's NPR
      broadcast, Kay said he had concluded that the WMD stockpiles were
      destroyed in the early 1990s, and that the two trailers in question
      were intended to produce hydrogen for weather balloons or possibly
      rocket fuel.

      In the same NPR interview Cheney also insisted there
      was "overwhelming evidence" of an "established relationship" between
      former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein and the al-Qaeda terrorist
      group, citing Saddam's alleged harboring of a suspect in the 1993
      bombing of the World Trade Center in New York. But the notion of such
      an "established relationship" in any operational sense has now been
      almost uniformly dismissed by the intelligence community, and even
      Bush and other senior White House officials have dropped the issue.

      In another interview, Cheney told USA Today he was not worried about
      his image as the administration's Machiavelli, skilled in the quiet
      arts of persuading his "Prince" to pursue questionable policies,
      adding, remarkably, "Am I the evil genius in the corner that nobody
      ever sees come out of his hole? It's a nice way to operate,
      actually."

      But whether Cheney likes it or not, he is increasingly seen as a
      master manipulator, by Democrats, by Republican internationalists
      such as Baker and Scowcroft, and, perhaps most significantly for
      purposes of Bush's re-election prospects, by a growing number of
      traditionally Republican right-wingers and libertarians worried about
      the impact of the exploding costs of the "war on terror" on the
      country's fiscal health, individual liberties and armed forces. These
      Republicans also blame Cheney for being the administration's key
      supporter of the neo-conservative agenda, which promotes a never-
      ending war against radical Islam.

      "So Dick Cheney turns out to be a true radical - not a moderate
      Republican," notes Georgie Anne Geyer, a nationally syndicated
      columnist, who compares the vice president to Cardinal Richelieu of
      17th-century France in a cover article for this week's edition of
      American Conservative magazine. "While there is little mystery about
      what he has actually done, there remains the mystery of how a man
      from Wyoming should be the epicenter of a scheme so strange, so
      Machiavellian, so profoundly disaggregated from the American
      context," she writes. "But no one should expect Dick Cheney and his
      group [of neo-conservatives] to change. They will not."

      In a case of particularly bad timing, Cheney's image as a
      manipulative schemer was furthered again this week, just as he was
      trying to reassure Europeans about his moderation and commitment to
      multilateralism. A new book on Tony Blair, authored by Financial
      Times correspondent Philip Stephens, depicts Cheney as the surprise
      guest at key meetings between Bush and the British prime minister. He
      quotes one Blair aide complaining that Cheney "waged a guerrilla war"
      against London's efforts to seek United Nations approval before the
      war. The book concludes that Cheney constantly "sought to undermine
      the prime minister privately", and quotes him telling another senior
      official more than six months before the war, "Once we have victory
      in Baghdad, all the critics will look like fools."

      With the presidential elections looming in November, a "victory" in
      Iraq still looks rather tenuous, and with recent polls showing
      Cheney's favorability rating at less than one-half of that of Bush -
      a mere 20 percent and falling - so might the vice president's claim
      to the No 2 spot on the Republican ticket.


      Jim Lobe writes on foreign policy for AlterNet, Foreign Policy in
      Focus, and TomPaine.com.
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