Sunday, September 28, 2008

Smithsonian Magazine on Why Iran is so Ticked off

I hate when I forget the history I swear I'll learn from. I'd forgotten that in 1953, the US overthrew Iran's democratic govt (whose Prime Minister was Time Magazine's Man of the Year in 1951) and installed the Shah. I had remembered that we backed the Shah, but had forgotten that we went and actually did the imperialist intervention thing to establish him.

Stephen Kinzer's excellent article, Inside Iran's Fury, is available online.

About the Iran hostage Crisis, he writes
Bruce Laingen, a career diplomat who was chief of the U.S. embassy staff, was the highest-ranking hostage. One day, after Laingen had spent more than a year as a hostage, one of his captors visited him in his solitary cell. Laingen exploded in rage, shouting at his jailer that this hostage-taking was immoral, illegal and "totally wrong." The jailer waited for him to finish, then replied without sympathy.

"You have nothing to complain about," he told Laingen. "The United States took our whole country hostage in 1953."

Understanding what hundreds of years of foreign intervention will do to the cultural and political outlook of a people (as say, First Nation peoples in North America, or African American descendants of 400 years of slavery) is important in terms of understanding the political context of a country in this fraught region.

And understanding how our CIA overthrew a[nother] government because their policies were first and foremost in the interest of their own people and not ours... that's a patriotic duty. The good and the bad people, the good and the bad.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Working Class Warrior or Liberal Elite ?

I took the How to Win a Fight with a Conservative Quiz, and with one answer change, got two different identities.

I had a terrible time deciding who to place in my naked pyramid, (in fact, wanted an opt-out so as to put no one into a naked pyramid) so I tried it both ways:

Turns out that it doesn't take much to change me from my working/middle class anti-corporate greed roots into an intellectual elite.

Putting George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld into a naked pyramid made me a Working Class Warrior.

How to Win a Fight With a Conservative is the ultimate survival guide for political arguments

My Liberal Identity:

You are a Working Class Warrior, also known as a blue-collar Democrat. You believe that the little guy is getting screwed by conservative greed-mongers and corporate criminals, and you’re not going to take it anymore.

Putting Bill O’Reilly, Ann Coulter, and Rush Limbaugh in the pyramid is all it took to make me into a Reality Based Intellectualist
How to Win a Fight With a Conservative is the ultimate survival guide for political arguments

My Liberal Identity:

You are a Reality-Based Intellectualist, also known as the liberal elite. You are a proud member of what’s known as the reality-based community, where science, reason, and non-Jesus-based thought reign supreme.

Truth is, I'm a farm girl that went and got edumakated. Which kind of makes me a Working Class Warrior Liberal Elite.

Funny how quizzes never have a category for that.

Nod to Ms. Kitty and Rev. Sean.

Friday, September 26, 2008

While you were watching the Other Hand

The House just passed the $630 Billion Omnibus bill. The Bank Bail out makes great press, as does John McCain's "suspending the campaign."
Meantime, as if they're powerless, the House Dems have passed a bill that contains
$488 Billion for the Pentagon
$30 Billion for Homeland Security
But not the increase in food stamps, extension of unemployment insurance, or Medicaid support they wanted.
Thank god there's an increase in funding for Veterans' Health programs, but here's a surprise to me, a 25-Billion dollar bail out (low interest loan) of the US Auto manufacturers. hmmm...

Thanks to

and mom.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

David Letterman on "suspending the campaign"

I haven't seen Letterman go on and on like this in a long time.

"You don't suspend your campaign, you have the vice president run it... are we suspending it b/c there's an economic crisis, or are we suspending it because his poll numbers are dropping......someone's been putting something in his Metamucil... you don't suspend the campaign, you put in your second string quarter back. Where's Sarah Palin? ...The Economy in Alaska is fine.

and best of all, 7 minutes in he does a lovely bit about how McCain couldn't be on Letterman because he was racing back to Washington, but then cuts live to the Evening News studio where he is doing an interview with Catie Couric.

or link directly

Friday, September 05, 2008

Sarah Palin - even talking about her is sexist

Why watch real news when there's Jon Stewart? He masters another moment of letting people speak for themselves...again and again and Oh My Goodness, it's quite lovely. Watch Karl Rove, Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Dick Morris, Nancy Pfotenhauer.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Reasons to love Jimmy Carter #46587b

You may have forgotten, but Carter put solar panels on the white house in 1979, and offered tax credits to Americans who did the same.

Reason # 5,947,356 to be mad at Ronald Reagon -- he took them down and terminated the tax credits.

Carter's goal was to have 20% of the nations energy supplied by renewable sources by the end of the 20th century.

Today it is the same as it was in 1979 -- %6