"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

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Think Happy Thoughts

Just a short post today while I work on the essay I'll publish in a day or two. Arthur Silber, a writer whose work I very much respect, is posting again after being sidelined due to some personal setbacks and health issues. Despite his recent troubles I believe his latest essay to be one of his stronger efforts in months.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Reading Material

Hello friends, its been a while huh? I've been somewhat overwhelmed lately with life's demands and, try as I might, there was just no putting them aside. Things are finally back in alignment to a large degree and I can feel my energy returning to the point where thinking and writing is again feasible.

Ok, enough of that. It's time to get back to the subject nearest and dearest to my heart: my country's fucked up foreign and domestic policies. Today I came across an essay on TomDispatch.com which is without question one of the most important sources for information that's generally downplayed or ignored in the mainstream media. This particular essay was penned by Chalmers Johnson whose trilogy on American Empire, Blowback [written before 9/11 yet remarkably prescient], The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemisis: Fall of the American Republic are simply must reads for anyone who gives a damn about this country and where it's headed.

Johnson reviews The Matador's Cape, America's Reckless, Response to Terror by Stephen Holmes--itself a review of several books by various neo-cons explaining away the shit-pile they helped construct. What I found most striking about this essay was a quote Johnson includes from Andrew Bacevich, writer of The New American Militarism, about our prospects under possible Democratic leadership in 2008:

"None of the Democrats vying to replace President Bush is doing so with the promise of reviving the system of checks and balances…. The aim of the party out of power is not to cut the presidency down to size but to seize it, not to reduce the prerogatives of the executive branch but to regain them."

Encouraging isn't it? Read on.