Obama Approves Indefinite Detention Without Trial Reply

And this guy’s supposed to be some kind of anti-American, Communist-Muslim terrorist extremist? Yeah, right. The mainstream American Right needs to get over its paranoid fantasies. Article by Jason Ditz.

President Obama today signed an executive order that will formalize the indefinite extralegal detention of terror suspects without charges as a permanent aspect of American life, while announcing that he intends to use this on detainees “who continue to pose a significant threat to national security” but against whom there is insufficient evidence to actually charge them with any crime.

PIGS Pose as Defense Attorney to Get Suspect to Incriminate Himself Reply

No underhanded tactic is too dirty for the PIGS. Radley Balko on this flagrant violation of the Fifth Amendment.

It seems that in 2008, Monroe County Sheriff’s Detectives Doug Brannon and Pat Henry actually posed as a federal defense attorney in an attempt to get incriminating information out of suspect John Edward Dawson, who was in jail on a host of charges, including theft and drug distribution. Not only that, but in doing so, they also talked Dawson into refusing to cooperate with his public defender and to plead guilty to the charges against him. They communicated with Dawson via a jailhouse informant.

Dawson’s public defender was so taken aback by his assurances to her that he had a “federal lawyer” who had worked out all of his charges, that she actually asked for a psychiatric evaluation. When all this came to light, Dawson’s (real) attorney asked for a continuance in his case so she could assess the damage. Remarkably, Tennessee Tenth Judicial Judge Amy Reedy refused the request, ruling that Dawson made “a real dumb decision” and that he had “picked his poison.”

The appeals court disagreed.

The Paranoid Moderates Reply

Yes, there is such a thing. Jesse Walker on anti-extremism hysteria.

• Is this really a time of unusually fierce fear and violent rhetoric?
• Is political paranoia just a fringe phenomenon, or is it also found in the middle of the road?
• What does a conspiracy theory have in common with a can of Four Loko?

From James Wenneker von Brunn, the neo-Nazi who opened fire at the Holocaust Memorial Museum, to Jared Lee Loughner, the “conscious dreaming” enthusiast who opened fire in Tucson in January, we’ve heard ample warnings about extremist paranoia since Barack Obama became president. We’ve heard much less about the paranoia of the political center. But when mainstream commentators treat a small group of unconnected crimes as a grand, malevolent movement, they unwittingly echo the very conspiracy theories they denounce. Both brands of connect-the-dots fantasy reflect the tellers’ anxieties much more than any order actually emerging in the world.

The Consequence of Silencing White Nationalists Reply

Interesting article arguing that efforts to silence old-fashioned conservative white nationalists like American Renaissance will only strengthen the more extreme elements of the “white right.” Read the article at Alternative Right.

Firstly, the pathetically embryonic nature of any kind of White nationalist movement that the establishment seems to believe is revealed though Mr. Taylor’s American Renaissance, Mr. Irving’s contrarian history, and other, similarly small, diffuse, and poorly-funded manifestations. When one considers the tremendous asymmetry of power, ostensible presence, and communicative ability between White nationalism in its entirety (casting the net even to the most irrational extremes) and the Establishment, one can perceive the tremendous fear felt of the former by the latter. What one might feel for some creature so dangerous even in infancy that one must kill it in the womb in order to allay the danger.

Secondly, the irrationalism and religiosity of the true believers of the antifa and their ilk. This is a subject worthy of greater discourse, but the religious nature of the Secular Humanism that forms the foundation of their “thought” (I hesitate to use that word in this context, seeing as there’s not a great deal of thinking actually involved on their part) is evident in their hateful, intolerant, and violent reactions to those they perceive as heretics. Indeed, the rantings of the Marxoid dimwits who populate these infantile, militant appendages of the intellectually bankrupt Left are becoming more and more deranged and devoid of any tangible association with reality.

Thirdly, and this is the aspect I find most interesting and sad: An impartial examination of American Renaissance’s positions vis-à-vis race and especially the Jewish Question would clearly reveal that American Renaissance could, in a sane world, serve to give voice to the West’s White population in a remarkably moderate fashion. By permitting this organization to be silenced, the establishment effectively forces the evolution of nascent White nationalism and the alternative Right towards more hardened structural forms. By this I mean organizational forms that are less vulnerable to penetration, compromise, control, suppression, or co-option. Indeed, it could be said—and many would say outright—that American Renaissance was an example of an organization that, through its philosemitic positions, open and forthright behavior, and Classical Liberal political positions, required no such countermeasures (a source of criticism one finds voiced by American Renaissance’s critics from the Right quite often).

A Palecon Critiques Louis Farrakhan Reply

John Derbyshire on the Nation of Islam leader.

The striking thing about the address was the almost total absence of anything Islamic in it. Most of the themes and references were in fact Christian. The first few quotes I logged to any scriptures at all were to Isaiah, Nehemiah, Isaiah, Isaiah, Matthew, Habakkuk, Isaiah, Malachi, Matthew, Joel, Joel, Isaiah, and only then, at 42 minutes in, a passing reference to the Koran. The whole middle part of the speech, from 1h 44m to 2h 8m, was an exegesis of the Sermon on the Mount. Much of the next hour was organized around a visit Farrakhan had paid to the Church of Scientology, which he seems to have found congenial. Not until 3h 12m did we get any Arabic, and then only some brief snatches. (NOI mosques use an English translation of the Koran.)

We got a lot of NOI theology, about which Farrakhan seems quite sincere. It’s wacky stuff, though I suppose no wackier than Young Earth Creationism or Scientology. Yakub the mad scientist shows up—the guy who created white people by eugenics. There were also eschatological warnings of the great fire coming.

The anti-white and anti-Semitic material was in plain sight, though Farrakhan mostly remembered to trim his rhetoric to allow for the possibility that there are some good white people and even some good Jews. There were actually a few white people in the audience, picked out by the cameras in reaction shots (though I didn’t spot Tim Wise).

Iran and the Culture of Fear Reply

Dave D’Amato on the neoconservatives’ most hated nation.

The people of the Arab world can (and ought) to be utterly repulsed by the American state without necessarily harboring any violent hostility toward ordinary people living in the United States. Average, working people in the Middle East and in the United States needn’t give credence to the jingoistic “us versus them” psychology that provides the basis for American politicians’ Iran-centered campaign of fear.

That the United States, the world’s most militaristic, murderous and savage death-dealer, continues to invoke the menace posed by an Iran with nuclear weapons is among the most striking and illustrative examples of statist madness. Anyone who is actually frightened more of Iran than the United States would do well to take a casual look around the Middle East and consider which of the two is spilling more blood.

Afghanistan and the Neoliberal Empire Reply

Article by Dave D’Amato.

For the economic program of the American ruling class to function, governments amenable to its hierarchical, corporate framework are a practical imperative. Today, the Big Business economic blueprint, created by and for the state’s elites, is so ubiquitous that no one of its vavasour states — be it Afghanistan or any other — is necessary by itself. The investments of the American state converge with nearly every building block of the “flat world” of neoliberalism, which, by concentrating wealth in a tiny sliver at the top, is anything but true to its metaphorical namesake.

It's Their War, Not Ours Reply

Pat Buchanan rebukes the latest fancy of the imperialists: intervention in Libya.

Assume we attack Gadhafi’s air defenses, and in the collateral damage are a dozen children—like those kids collecting sticks on that hillside in Afghanistan—and Al-Jazeera spreads footage of their dismembered bodies across the Middle East, as commentators rail, “The Americans are killing Muslims again, this time for Libya’s oil.” The pro-democracy demonstrations across the Middle East would instantly become anti-American riots.

If we destroy Gadhafi’s air defenses, could we simply let the rebels and regime fight it out? If Libyans, seeing us intervene, rose up against Gadhafi, could we let them be massacred as Bush I let the tens of thousands of Shiites be massacred who rose up in 1991 against Saddam after Bush urged them to do so?

Neoconservatism Unmasked Reply

From Bradley Thompson of the CATO Institute.

What really bothers the neocons about small-government Republicans is that they lack a “governing philosophy.” The neocons have long urged the Republicans to reinvent themselves by giving up their Jeffersonian principles and developing a new “philosophy of governance.” Ironically, though, the neocons’ conception of a “governing philosophy” is not one defined by fixed moral principles. Instead, it’s an intellectual technique defined by pragmatism. The neocons’ “philosophy of governance” is a philosophy for how to rule or govern. It’s all about “thinking politically,” which means developing strategies for getting, keeping, and using power in certain ways. The neocons therefore urge the GOP to become chameleon-like and to adapt themselves to changing circumstances.

The neocons’ pragmatic statesmanship is grounded in two basic assumptions: first, the identification of the “public interest” with some kind of golden mean and, second, the conceit that they—and only they—have the practical wisdom by which to know the golden mean. The neocons therefore believe it to be both necessary and possible for wise statesmen to find the golden mean between altruism and self-interest, duties and rights, regulation and competition, religion and science, socialism and capitalism.

The Other Wars 4

From the Uhuru Movement.

On January 6 of this year the Steering Committee of the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations voted to hold a National Conference on the Other Wars in this city on March 26 at a location not yet consolidated at the time of this writing.

The Black is Back Coalition was formed in September of 2009 and within less than two months after its founding organized the first national mobilization against the U.S. imperialist wars since the inauguration of the Obama regime. It is a coalition that encompasses a broad and ideologically diverse sector of the African population that is united by its opposition to imperialism and its commitment to the self-determination of African and other peoples.

In its adopted proposal to hold the National Conference on the Other Wars the Coalition expressed its dismay with the opportunist conduct of much of the traditional white left and anti-war movement…

Watching the Revolution in the Middle East Reply

Scott Horton interviews Jason Ditz.

Jason Ditz, managing news editor at Antiwar.com, discusses Robert Gates’s warning on the spillover effects of imposing a Libyan no-fly zone; the daunting prospect of invading and occupying Libya, a country larger than both Iraq and Afghanistan; why the US is incapable of a politically neutral humanitarian intervention; the ongoing negotiations in Yemen; the strange apologetic violence against protesters in Bahrain; and the reported crackdown on dissident Iraqi intellectuals protesting the Maliki government.

MP3 here. (24:44)

Jason Ditz is the managing news editor at Antiwar.com. His op-ed pieces have been published in newspapers across the country.

600 British Citizens Arrest Corrupt Judge 2

This is the kind of thing that needs to happen more often.

Hundreds of protesters stormed a courtroom and attempted to make a citizens’ arrest on a judge in support of a man challenging his council tax bill.

In chaotic scenes, police rescued Judge Michael Peake from the clutches of a mob and escorted him safely from the County Court in Birkenhead, Merseyside.

Officers were force to scramble over court benches to control the near riot as one protester shouted to ‘seal the court’. Another sat in the judge’s chair at the head of the court and declared the defendant be released.

Clash: Police pull away a protester after hundreds stormed Birkenhead county Court to make a citizens' arrest of the judge

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1364091/Council-tax-protesters-storm-courtroom-arrest-judge.html#ixzz1G2HxBpRx

Bradley Manning: Treated Worse Than a Serial Killer Reply

Glenn Greenwald explains.

Let’s review Manning’s detention over the last nine straight months: 23-hour/day solitary confinement; barred even from exercising in his cell; one hour total outside his cell per day where he’s allowed to walk around in circles in a room alone while shackled, and is returned to his cell the minute he stops walking; forced to respond to guards’ inquiries literally every 5 minutes, all day, everyday; and awakened at night each time he is curled up in the corner of his bed or otherwise outside the guards’ full view. Is there anyone who doubts that these measures — and especially this prolonged forced nudity — are punitive and designed to further erode his mental health, physical health and will? As The Guardian reported last year, forced nudity is almost certainly a breach of the Geneva Conventions; the Conventions do not technically apply to Manning, as he is not a prisoner of war, but they certainly establish the minimal protections to which all detainees — let alone citizens convicted of nothing — are entitled.

Texas Nationalist Group Rallies for Secession Reply

Secessionists rally in Austin.

The Texas Nationalist Movement marked Texas Independence Day with a rally on Saturday at the Capitol urging Texans to save the state by seceding from the United States.

A small but enthusiastic group of Texans gathered on the steps of the Capitol, as an assortment of massive Texas flags blew above them in the chilly afternoon breeze.

Outrage was spread evenly toward Democrats and Republicans as leaders of the movement expressed their disgust for the growing national debt and the federal government’s treatment of Texas.

“Texas can take better care of itself than Washington,” said Lauren Savage, vice president of the movement. “We are here to raise interest in the Legislature of the possibility of secession to cure the ills of America.”

Members are demanding that state lawmakers introduce a bill that would allow Texans to vote on whether to declare independence.

The Myth of Cushy Prisons Reply

From the This Ain’t Livin’ blog.

I recently re-encountered one of the more bizarrely pervasive myths about prisons when I was talking about the prison abolition movement with a friend: The idea that prisons are ‘cushy.’ This person was trying to argue that because conditions in prisons are so terrific, prisoners have it better when they’re incarcerated than they would in their own communities, which is such a tangled mess of complicated and erroneous ideas that I hardly know where to begin.

The Inalienable Right to Hate Fags 2

Jim Goad on the Fred Phelps freak show.

Based on their endless words and their tireless actions, the Westboro Baptist Church seems to sincerely believe that God is punishing America for its increasing tolerance of homosexuality. They honestly seem to think that every scrawny AIDS casualty, every soldier snuffed in battle, and every random bleeding disaster victim is tasting “God’s hate” in the way that only a sadistic, torture-happy God can spoon it out to them. The sort of drive that compels this extended family of look-alikes and think-alikes to conduct an average of a half-dozen public demonstrations every day for nigh on two decades suggests they truly believe in what they do, regardless of whether people think they’re assholes.

Now, paint me pink and call me Shirley, but they are assholes of a rare caliber. Picketing the funerals of AIDS victims and slain soldiers is mortally rude. Picketing at any funeral for any reason makes you an asshole. In fact, picketing at all, even once in your life, is a good indicator that you’ve always been and will always be an asshole.

Women and Democracy in the Middle East Reply

Article by Charles Glass.

That there is a long way to go became clear on the night that Hosni Mubarak resigned and mobs crowded into Tahrir Square to claim credit for a revolution that others had made. (They were like those “resisters of the eleventh hour” who jammed the streets of Paris on the night of August 24, 1944 to pretend they had been in the Resistance all along.) I spoke by telephone to a young woman who had been in the square most of the previous two weeks, and she said that many of those who came on February 11 had not been there before. Some men attacked and sexually assaulted CBS correspondent Lara Logan. About eighty-three percent of all Egyptian women said they had been harassed in public at least once, while half of them said they suffered similar treatment every day. This is according to the Egyptian Center for Women’s Rights’ 2008 report. The dictatorship ignored that behavior, but a democracy cannot afford to do so.

Taking responsibility for one’s own life, which is what democracy requires, means growing up. You are no longer the leader’s wayward child, you are a full citizen with obligations to other citizens. If this revolution is to succeed beyond merely sending tyrants to luxurious retirement, the people will have to become sovereign. The women must have an equal say with men in how the society is constituted. And the men must, if they are to be men, grow up.

Gideon Levy wrote of his country’s treatment of the Arabs it rules:

What sort of democracy is this, if exactly half the state’s residents don’t benefit from it? Indeed, can the term “democratic” be applied to a state in which many of the residents live under a military regime or are deprived of civil rights? Can there be democracy without equality, with a lengthy occupation and with foreign workers who have no rights?

He might have been writing of women in the Arab world, which may enshrine the equality of women before Israel does the same with its Arab population.

An Odd Duck 2

“I do think Keith Preston merits the title odd duck, if anyone does.

That said, unlike with Gabb, you don’t generally see those two criticisms coming from the same group of people in Preston’s case. The people who bag on his NA-sympathies don’t generally also complain about his sympathies for Carsonian economic views, at least as far as I know.”

-comment posted on the “Rad Geek” blog

Right wing commies
Leftist Nazis
Point their fingers
Rumors linger

We don’t care what you think

Branded sexist
Labeled racist
Want it clearer?
Check the mirror

We don’t care what you think

Lies and slander in vain try to shame us
Riots, protests, violence just makes us famous
TV interviews, free publicity
Increase record sales dramatically

The left they say I’m a fascist
The right calling me communist
Hate hate hate hatred for all–one and all
No matter what you believe
Don’t believe in you–and that’s true

Some would say that we’re biased
Accusations that we are racist
Well, shit comes in all hues
Now this means you
‘Cause things ain’t always like they seem

We hate everyone

We don’t care what you think

-“We Hate Everyone,” Type O Negative, lyrics by Peter Steele, R.I.P.

A Women's Revolution in the Middle East? Reply

Naomi Wolf thinks so.

So where were these women in Tunisia and Egypt?

In both countries, women protesters were nothing like the Western stereotype: they were front and centre, in news clips and on Facebook forums, and even in the leadership. In Egypt’s Tahrir Square, women volunteers, some accompanied by children, worked steadily to support the protests – helping with security, communications, and shelter. Many commentators credited the great numbers of women and children with the remarkable overall peacefulness of the protesters in the face of grave provocations.

Other citizen reporters in Tahrir Square – and virtually anyone with a cell phone could become one – noted that the masses of women involved in the protests were demographically inclusive. Many wore headscarves and other signs of religious conservatism, while others reveled in the freedom to kiss a friend or smoke a cigarette in public.