Archive for the Torture Category

YouTube:  Your University:  America’s Community College (December 8, 2014)

Posted in Bush, Digital, Education, Football, Schooling, Torture on December 8, 2014 by

. . .

Y          “When I got home years ago, Junior asked if I knew how to circumvent parental controls on the computer.  After pausing for an answer, he answered that he simply typed in ‘how to circumvent parental controls’ and was provided a plan pronto.”

T          “Hard to fault initiative.”

Y          “YouTube has emerged as the University for the masses by the masses.” 

T          “The Community College for the public.”

Y          “Sharpening a knife or sharpening skills, just type something in and a member of the public commons has probably uploaded a useful video.  Everyone can be a professor, a pundit or a poet for 15 seconds or 15 minutes.”

T          “And no tuition, books or fees to fund the futball team.”

. . .

[See the commentary proffered ten years ago at “Bush: “Torture our kids, s’il vous plait” (January 31, 2005)”.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

How do you dovetail the theory of relativity and string theory?

Knowledge Is Good

Spiraling Into The Dirt (October 2, 2006)

Posted in Bush, Foreign Policy, Iraq, Torture on October 2, 2006 by

Congress approved Bush’s efforts to encourage terrorists to torture Americans.  [See the e-ssay dated January 31, 2005 “Bush:  Torture our kids, s’il vous plait”].  America has now effectively repudiated key provisions of the Geneva Conventions and the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaties, treaties that served America well in the past.

Bob Woodward chronicles the tortuous haranguing in the House of Hubris in his book, State of Denial:  Bush at War, Part III.  Parts I and II missed the material finally coalesced and analyzed in Part III.  Bush always intended to invade Iraq.  His invasion on March 19, 2003 triggered World War III.  That war continues to expand in ways that are not fully comprehended.  There are two overriding concerns in the White House:  1) do not draw any comparisons between Iraq and Vietnam, and 2) do not use the phrase “civil war” under any circumstances.  [See the e-ssay dated March 6, 2006 entitled “Support Our Troops . . . Return” and the e-ssay dated March 20, 2006 entitled “The (Unreal) March Madness.”]

Forbes Magazine’s 400 richest Americans is constituted only of those worth a billion ($1,000,000,000.00).  No one is worth a billion dollars.  A single family home can now be had for $100,000,000.00 ($100 million).  Even if one can obtain a no-interest loan to purchase one of these abodes, the monthly payment exceeds the recommended 30 percent limit of monthly income that a prudent person should commit to housing.  Almost everyone is already spending too much for housing every month.  And yet median household earnings are flat.

The stock market is going through the roof.  There are not as many new roofs going up nationwide.  The declining housing market will reduce the “wealth effect” that individuals feel when the value of their home rises which will reduce consumer spending which will depress the stock market in the near future.

Nobel Prize recipients are announced this week.  They are worth a million.  There are still individuals out there contributing to the public good.

Is the GOP now the Gay Old Party or the Grand Old Pedophiles?  Too many contemporary Republicans seek to get into one’s bedroom.  Too many Republicans cannot be left alone with children of either gender.  We do not need to take a page from the Republicans; we need to take all the pages from the Republicans.  Congressman Foley (R) is not an exception.  Slow the terrorism against kids.

Bumper sticker of the week:

January 21, 2009

End of an Error

Bush: “Torture our kids, s’il vous plait” (January 31, 2005)

Posted in Foreign Policy, Torture on January 31, 2005 by

For many years, concerned men and women on the planet have sought to impose some limits on the conduct of war and the treatment of prisoners of war.  A combatant is to be rendered hors de combat and removed from the battlefield, not wantonly slaughtered or ritualistically dismembered.  The golden rule – do onto others as you would like them to do onto your kids – was exalted.  The hope has been that a scared, bewildered and blindfolded American kid would find that someone in the cell knows at least one Western word – “Geneva” – and perhaps entertains some vague anxiety that following the directions of his superiors will not be a defense if the other side wins.  America’s compliance with international law on a good day is incidental because of the settled practice that only O3s (captains) and lesser ranking members of the U.S. military are ever held accountable for atrocities under any circumstances.  Even though the senior officers (O4s and up) of the U.S. military are exempt from prosecution, some of them are uneasy that the restraints have been removed.  The enlightened of the world have hoped that a few individuals would back off on a few occasions and not reach for the blowtorch and the battery cables.

The Bush regime decided to shift from the “civil/criminal law” paradigm to a “war” paradigm in response to every local, state, national and/or international challenge.  The “war” paradigm, however, still has rules that are in our interest.  By repudiating the rules, Bush has provided carte blanche to individuals who were admittedly not eager to embrace “Western rules.”  When the next 18 year old who only wanted to score some coin for the nursing degree is splayed out on the table, the captors will remember at least one Western word – “George.”  He says that anything goes.  In this craven new world created by Bush and his boys, it is a defense to say that the Americans propounded the rules for the treatment of the American prisoners.  America loses.  The final outcome now depends on who wins the struggle.