"The wealthy, not only by private fraud but also by common laws, do every day pluck and snatch away from the people some part of their daily living. Therefore, when I consider and weigh in my mind these commonwealths which nowadays do flourish, I perceive nothing but a certain conspiracy of rich men in procuring their own commodities under the name and authority of the commonwealth.

They invent and devise all means and crafts, first how to keep safely without fear of losing that which they have unjustly gathered together, and next how to hire and abuse the work and labor of the people for as little money and effort as possible."

Thomas More, Utopia

Thursday, August 23, 2007


Fox News is at it again folks. They've dusted off the war drums and have been banging away with an ever increasing tempo as the window of opportunity for assaulting another nation posing no threat to us closes on the disasterous Team Bush administration. As was the case during the lead up to the assault on Iraq, Fox News is braying at the head of the media pack now calling attention to the Iranian "threat" looming over the horizon. There is even speculation that Karl Rove's sudden departure from Team Bush was the result of losing a power struggle with the Prince of Darkness, aka Dick Cheney, who has been pushing hard for war on Iran. Rove, arguably the most intelligent member of Team Bush, was said to be insistent that given our present difficulties in Iraq, an attack on its neighbor--with perhaps four times its population--was sheer madness. It would appear that the Prince has prevailed. And not a moment too soon as far as the war mavens at Fox are concerned.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Who Is IOZ?

...This is. I discovered this blog courtesy of Arthur Silber and have now included it on my link list. Enjoy.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

War Porn for Rue St. Michel

Recently the Lair had a visit from "Rue St. Michel" [see comments section of the "Obama-Bad-Ass" post], a fellow Chicago police officer whose political leanings are, to put it mildly, considerably to the right of yours truly. The following clip I found courtesy of The Red Stater Dennis Perrin and I thought immediately of the Rue-ster whose ravings I encourage you to read if, for nothing else, their sheer entertainment value. Nothing excites Rue more than American Empire making the world safe for “democracy and freedom”.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Remember When...

...a senator by the name of Wayne Morse of Oregon had the courage to speak truth to power? This courageous man would be one of only two senators who refused to sign on to Lyndon Johnson’s Gulf of Tonkin resolution “justifying” the radical US escalation of its assault on Vietnam. Recently on Dennis Perrin’s blog I happened upon the following You Tube clip from the new DVD “War Made Easy”.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Arthur Silber Returns

It is with great pleasure that I can report that Arthur Silber has returned to posting on his indespensible blog, "Once Upon A Time..." and is in excellent form. Arthur’s work has had a powerful influence upon my still-developing world view and perhaps only that of Noam Chomsky surpasses it. I am deeply in his debt. Unfortunately, Arthur is not in good health and is of precarious financial status so there is the real possibility that he may not write for much longer. But enough of that, for in the here and now Arthur has left a treasure trove of powerful writing on political and cultural issues pertaining not only to the United States in the age of Empire, but of the West in general that will no doubt stand the test of time.

Let’s reflect on the issues he raises in this recent post regarding the state of denial among progressives who cling relentlessly to the fallacy that somehow, some way the Democrats Will Save Us. He calls this essay appropriately enough, “Blinded by the Story: Liberals and Progressives as Political Creationists”.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Support The Troops Damnit!

The following savage satire comes to you via former SNL and Daily Show funnyman A. Whitney Brown courtesy of Dennis Perrin.

Sunday, August 05, 2007


Everyone by now has a take on Barack Obama's chest-thumping routine regarding Pakistan so I may as well throw in my two cents. The following was a post of mine that didn't see the light of day over at the SCC Blog in the "Obama Steps in it Again" thread from 2 August 07. Lately I've noticed that my posts don't appear over there when my positions flout conventional wisdom as was the case with the post below:

“Hillary's people have to be licking their chops. First, they berated Obama as a foreign policy lightweight for saying that he'd meet with enemy states like Iran or North Korea despite that fact that they have, time and again, violated UN sanctions and International Law”—SCC

Obama steps in it? Steps in what? The Barockstar is merely playing the game fellas. Hillary plays it as well. As representatives of the Business Party’s milder wing, both The Hillerator and Barockstar must demonstrate to the owners of our plutocracy (corporations and major investors) that they will keep their eye on the prize. You see guys, the Bushistas have fucked things up royally. Let’s briefly revue how they’ve run the imperial train off the rails:

--Iraq is “lost”, that is to say it cannot be profitably exploited by the USuk energy corporations after what has to be the most inept occupation in history.

--The illegal USuk invasion/occupation has managed in fact to do the precise opposite of what its planners envisioned—increased the influence and prestige of Iran in the region.

--The Bushistas have repeated the fundimental mistake of the Vietnam War in attempting to conduct a war of imperial conquest with volunteers instead of mercenaries. Though an attempt to get around this obstacle has been made with the increased use of private contractors (i.e mercenaries) there simply aren’t enough of them to overcome the Iraqi resistance.

--The US Army is nearly broken. Yep, that happens when you try to get around the fact that you just can’t find enough cannon-fodder to enlist, so you just keep rotating the same troops through over and over and over again. Futhermore, it is bankrupting the Treasury and drowning the nation in foreign debt.

--As a result of the above, the US is unable to slap Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, and others who defy the Hegemon (and its corporations) back in line with a quick invasion like back in the good old days. We’re spread too thin.

The Democrats have to show that THEY are the better managers of Pax Americana thus the tough talk from Barockstar, it’s the only card they have since they share the same imperial values. Obama-Bad-Ass is speaking directly to a particular audience when he sprouts off about Pakistan—namely elites. He means to reassure the owners of our society that a Democratic victory in ’08 will not lead to a constriction of America’s aggressive foreign policy. Look at where both The Hillerator and Barockstar converge on the issues: (1) both agree to leave the possibility of a nuclear strike on Iran, a major violation of the UN Charter—just the threat—“on the table”; (2) both have no intention of removing US troops from Iraq or the region as they staunchly support the continuing construction of the largest US embassy in the world right in the heart of illegally occupied Baghdad, as well as the 14 massive permenant bases also undergoing construction in strategic locations throughout Iraq—all of which ensures US control of ACCESS to the vital and stupendously profitable energy resources of Iraq.

An attack on Pakistan is indeed madness SCC—we can’t subdue Iraq let alone the nation you’ve described—but Barockstar knows this. As he and Hillerator jockey for position as Imperial America’s Chief Manager, they use code-speak for the audience that counts which roughly translates as follows: We won’t let you down like those other fools, just give us the power and we’ll bring home the bacon.


Saturday, August 04, 2007

Scared Yet?

It takes a fairly strong constitution these days to seriously investigate the state of the American Experiment as we now find it. I’m often struck by the sheer indifference of so many Americans to what may very well be the last days of this nation’s nominal republic. At first I was tempted to attribute the phenomenon to the characteristic self-absorption for which we Americans are famous, however, further reflection revealed to me another possibility—fear. Many of us are afraid to look too closely at just how much damage the Bushites have done to the country, and threaten to do to the rest of the world. To do so would challenge on a fundamental level what we have been raised from birth to believe about America as a beacon of freedom and defender of democracy.

As Americans we are accustomed to thinking of Other Places where the rule of law goes unacknowledged or where the writ of habeas corpus is held in such trivial esteem as to be non-existent. Certainly OUR president would never authorize the domestic wire-tapping of American citizens without a court order as required by law. Surely there is a LEGITIMATE explanation for why our elected officials ratified the radical and Orwellian-titled legislation known as the Patriot Act which so fundamentally undermines our Bill of Rights without bothering to READ IT first.

I sometimes feel as though I’ve awaken from a bad dream only to discover that yes…both houses of congress did in fact pass the terrifying Military Commissions Act of 2006—virtually without debate. In a stroke, extraordinary powers were granted to the President the likes of which the founders never intended for his office as Amnesty International’s report on this legislation makes plain.

The Unitary Executive

The founders understood that there existed no greater threat to the republic than the unchecked power of an Executive who would be King. As a precaution they unambiguously enshrined in our Constitution critical checks and balances designed specifically to separate the powers of government into clearly delineated spheres from which neither institution could come to dominate and thus draw to itself the power of Cesar. The Bushites would change all of that. Legislation such as the Patriot Act which serves to undermine our Bill of Rights and the Military Commissions Act which so radically challenges James Madison’s separation-of-powers concept and basic tenants of liberty such as habeas corpus goes a long way towards completing their project.

The Bush administration has aggressively pursued its “unitary executive” theory since its first days in office but following 9/11 and the subsequent “war on terror” this agenda has taken on a heightened urgency. In brief, the unitary executive theory posits that the president enjoys far greater authority over regulatory agencies (originally conceived and designed to be independent of politics) such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) than has heretofore been acknowledged. Furthermore, according to its proponents, the Executive has tremendous leeway in his interpretation of legislation passed by Congress and its applicability to his chosen course of action.

Let’s turn now to the subject of this post, one George W. Bush. Recently the good people at Consortium News.com (Robert Parry, et al) had a psychological profile of our Commander-in-Chief drawn up and folks, the results are frightening.