Tag Archives: civil liberties

Police Rethink Long Tradition on Using Force – The New York Times

A small but vocal number of law enforcement officials are calling for a rethinking of axioms that have emphasized how to use force, not how to avoid it.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.nytimes.com

Better late than never I say, but then again I’ve always been of the mind that if you need to use force to exercise your “authority” within a community, you probably have no business being there doing what you’re doing in the first place.  

Only someone with the trust and the respect of a community will ever have any true authority to enforce justice, with an emphasis on its justness and a lot of that stems from the fact that they have a stake in it in some way and are somehow already a part of that community. 

See on Scoop.itMaking a Difference

NYC Police Are At It Again

What is wrong with the Police these days?

Are they inherently more violent today than in the past?

Is this the way it’s always been?

Has the recent proliferation of phones equipped with camera’s merely allowed us to see plainly a behavior that has always existed under the surface and in the shadows, shielded behind an impenetrable “blue shield” and code of silence?

 

What are your thoughts?

Glenn Greenwald on Bill Maher Discusses Why Rationale For Killing al-Awlaki is Deeply Flawed

Glenn Greenwald owns the civil liberties debate yet again while a guest on Real Time with Bill Maher.

I’m glad theres at least one reporter who has a fucking brain these days and isn’t willing to just go along with whatever the Obama administration says should go, like the rest of the mainstream media that isn’t FOX News, at least.

The part he was just coming to at the end is really the most powerful and the most prescient portion of his argument and it’s what we are witnessing at the moment from the Obama administration and is something we will be forced to reconcile one way or another, especially considering how very little concern Obama has shown for his actions.

Until we show the Obama administration that we are not willing to just give up without a fight, and that we do not in fact condone it’s present course of behavior; then we should expect more and more and more egregious steps to be taken until the administration is met with some kind of response from us.

What’s your take on it? Do you think Obama is justified in doing something like that? Or do you think he has his head in the political sand and essentially has absolutely no idea whats going on in the first place?

 

If We Stand Up They Lose

Don’t let the fact this video is from a Coca-Cola commercial fool you; looks can be deceiving, that’s just its day job.

Watch the video and take the advice to heart.

Our rights will continue to be curtailed and our interests will go on being ignored only for so long as we allow it. It’s amazing how empowering something so simple as standing up can be, but don’t take my word for it; try it and find out.

Our Own Worst Enemy: The Spread of Terrorism

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate only love can do that
True Story, It is pointless to fight terror with terror, the only way to bring peace is with peace.

Sink Or Swim

This is a point in our history that we will look back on as coming to define our course of action for the foreseeable future. Where we go from here will determine whether we right ourselves or expedite the sinking process; either way, our ship is failing, it’s up to us and our immediate actions to determine the outcome

We now face a moral dilemma of the highest order, a crisis of conscience as we struggle to recognize something already well-known to the rest of the world.  It is us and not Al Qaeda, the Taliban or Iran that is the largest terrorist organization in the world; the United States government and what it represents.

We also struggle to in our treatment of those being illegally detained at Guantanamo Bay, which is apparently still open and ready for business, of the shadiest variety; Obama’s punch drunk campaign promises to close this blight upon our nation, renouncing everything it had stood for under Cheney and Bush continues to this day; undeterred and uninhibited.

Walks  Like A Terrorist:

This is the very same place where our best and brightest went to fight against terrorism and the threat of it spreading; water-boarding and torturing those they suspected as terrorists in search of answers; becoming that which they sought in the process yet never suspecting themselves.

There’s no such thing as necessary evil when in the service of good, that’s just what those that let evil into their hearts tells themselves;  having become wolves in sheep’s clothing, the devil’s in the detail.

As of now, the majority of the 166 prisoners left at Guantanamo are known not to be guilty of being anything…other than shit outta luck; sorry, our apologies, better luck next life, but thanks for playing.

Having this knowledge in front of them, that they’ve been pursuing the wrong angles, torturing the wrong people and that innocent men remain incarcerated, the CIA operates with all the blazing fast speed of your common slimy garden creäture, giving a whole new meaning to snail mail…..

Despite his emphatic claims made while punch drunk adoration and the roar of the crowd, Obama opened his mouth and let whatever wanted to come out, to come out.  Having shown his true colors after re-election, I already feel like asking for a refund on a purchase not yet 6 months old.  Despite his beset efforts to keep the stickiness that is the situation we now face at Guantanamo, Obama will soon come to realize he will be forced to face it one way or another;

Like the prisoners, escaping this troublesome situation is not an option.

Still subjected to the inhumane and degrading treatment at the hands of their captors as they had in the beginning, despite it being general knowledge they almost certainly have no ties to any terrorists, many of the prisoners have gone on hunger strike until they gain basic human rights and are once again treated with dignity;

A Government Acting Without Reason

Unfortunately judging by the lack of government response or change in the guards actions, most sources familiar with the situation are in agreement that dignity will come to them on the other side; eminent deaths related to the strike are now highly likely.

Rather than meeting their basic demands, medical people will have them forcibly restrained as a feeding tube gets shoved down their throat and they are left tied to their bed, only to have the process repeated the next morning.  This brutal treatment only increases the amount participating in the strikes, now totaling 92, over one half, ensuring the medical staff to be overworked n attempting to prevent the deaths from happening.

This situation bears a good deal of resemblance to one faced by former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher with 9 IRA members being held in captivity that went on hunger strike until they were recognized as being political prisoners and not being held on the pretense of criminal charges; it never happened, Margaret Thatcher watched those 9 men and women starve to death and didn’t bat an eye about it…..even gaining a begrudging respect for them in the process for having done it. .

Do You Feel Lucky? Well Do Ya Punk?

Unfortunately for him, Obama can ill afford to go this route. Unlike Thatcher who at least had some semblance of a reason for holding the IRA members on at least trumped-up criminal charges, Obama can no longer even produce those to prove our continuing to hold them.

Also, when combined with the empty pledge to have already closed the base by now, and in light of the recent reports that the Boston bombing was in fact motivated by retaliation for our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq which we’ve devastated and terrorized through a campaign of indiscriminate bombing; leaving with little other than death and destruction to show for our efforts in the region aside from massive body counts and guilty consciences.

Unless he makes a stand and does the right thing for these people who have been held captive without any opportunity to legally clear themselves, subjected to various forms of torture and god knows what else; unless he does right by them, he is invited yet another Boston or worse by saying our nation is filled with Hubris and believes itself above the law, international or otherwise;

Boston Skyline

The more Obama uses tries to hide from it or deny it, the more he says we resemble nothing like a nation that stands for something; like his nobel peace prize he did not earn; we are for nothing.

In a stunning twist of irony, these prisoners stand to do the United States more damage by virtue of being incarcerated than they could ever have potentially done on the outside before or after having been made a part of this terrorist summer camp.

Unlike the bomb or their bomb plots which were a fictive, byproducts of our over-active collective imaginations,  these prisoners now can do us more harm by giving up their lives peacefully while incarcerated;

dying on the hunger strike, damning us far more in the eyes of the world, even our own people wouldn’t be able to look at government the same after something like that. Revealed once and for all time, the it’s hypocritical existence filled with contradictions.

The whole world is watching President Obama, and our actions or inactions on this matter can have even the most dire effects on our own citizens, inviting domestic terrorism where there had previously been none as the events in Boston has shown us.

No longer do these United States enjoy an unlimited free pass for our actions; our policies and our actions elsewhere have consequences, some of which we may not like new concepts made aware to the American conscience no longer possessing the automatic ability to stay so blissfully ignorant to the atrocities undertaken by our very own government and their potential effects on  them, and on us.

Flag At Guantanamo HOw Cute
US Flag at Guantanamo. Oh look how cute!

No more empty promises
No more blank checks
No more government sponsored terrorism in the name of any cause
No more blindly endorsing the empty rhetoric of our president or the atrocities actually behind them,  undertaken by our own government, in all our own names.

From this point on, nobodies innocent at this stage in the game there’s blood on all our hands.

Below I’ve listed some good articles about what’s going on with the hunger strikes Give them a look and Let me Know What the word is!!!

NY Times Op-Ed by Hunger Strike Participant At Guantanamo

Glenn Greenwald’s Take

What A Waste of Money

 

Dear Obama: A Letter On Delusions and Disillusionment Past and Present.

Here’s My Initial Thoughts:

Official photographic portrait of US President...
Official photographic portrait of US President Barack Obama (born 4 August 1961; assumed office 20 January 2009) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Obama sure talked a big game in ’08 , slightly downsized in 2012,
Obama 2.012 was with its original luster…it was also a campaign I was a small part of hoping to practice what I preached;
But the whole campaign something for me just felt, well, it just felt kinda off….
 
What should have been clue #1
 
No longer was he promising change; government cooperation, transparency, and efficiency; a more open and available presidency where the president could make a complete sentence, a president in touch with the will of the common person, not the corporate personhood, repatriation of our fugitive civil liberties…. hmmmmm I wonder
 
Not really being totally gung-ho about Obama especially his foreign policy, and knowing it would be the same under either,  I made what I felt was the least shitty of two shitty choices, opting to take what I could get in the form of his domestic social policies vs. their non-existence under Mitt Romney.  It’s only a few months into his last and final lame duck term, and I’ve got the strong feeling I chose wrong
Mitt Romney in Fresno
Mitt Romney in Fresno (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
 
The truth is, aside from his oratory, which is still good, but not great; certainly ranking much higher than Bush’s, he’s failed to deliver on any of these promises. Lately even his speeches have been coming up short, and falling flat and seem if anything empty, and lackluster.

Is It Time For Tough Love?

Despite having supported him on election day of ’08, and the campaign of 2012 as an intern, I have to show some tough love right now, because theres nothing I hate more than a fucking liar.

Dear Obama

I’ve had it!

It’s not me, it’s you; let me tell you why:

No more passes, no more silence, no longer will I allow my subconscious to ignore your repeated human rights abuses, persecution of web sites internet activists and whistle-blowers, or your escalation of the drone war and War on Terror.

The belief that it’s alright if, “they’re a son of a bitch, but they’re our son of a bitch” is both mistaken, and flawed. Just as it was when we applied it to brutal dictators willing to bow to US interests; Ngo Diem, Mubarrak, or Sadaam & Bin Laden; It’s flawed in the here, and the now.

If you were really “my guy” you would not be making empty promises you have no intention to deliver on. I wouldn’t be forced to make the least shitty of two shitty choices, forced to wipe and wash up afterwards either way….

You would be about that change you so clearly stated you wished to bring, boutty-bout it, but instead;

You’ve become just another political hack and a crony.

the only difference between yourself, and a career politician, is you’re not any good at it; obviously having no political leverage or capital as your failure to secure your agenda on gun control and the budget (sequester) make evident to us.  You fail to be effective at pushing for legislation many people actually want in the Senate with it’s Democrat majority, let alone the Republican House….

Your failure to do so despite the tragedy at Sandy Hook, yet the ease with which you took away or “suspended” our miranda rights in the wake of the bombing at the Boston Marathon has been most enlightening……. and appears to be your MO, your modus operandi.

You wouldn’t refuse to release the prisoners from Guatanamo, many of whom we have long known are not terrorists, to their rightful homes, having been unlawfully imprisoned and tortured for over 10 yrs…….

You wouldn’t have kill lists or claim to have the power to kill US citizens overseas with drone strikes…..

You also wouldn’t persecute anyone bringing it from the darkness of shadow into the light, by putting it online, speaking about it publicly, or otherwise making it available for the American people to find……

Frodo Baggins:

Elijah Wood as Frodo in Peter Jackson's live-a...
Elijah Wood as Frodo in Peter Jackson’s live-action version of The Lord of the Rings. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Far from the shire, you now sit atop Mt.Doom gazing at the fire, finally able to destroy the one ring….and you can’t do it, placing it snugly back upon your finger, fading away into invisibility, just like the you I thought we’d once come to know.

No longer are you behind those ideals and beliefs as myself as you once were, or claimed to be. A born again Christian, only in reverse; its like you became a Jehova Witness goin door to door to spread the word on nights and weekends.

Keep that gospel, drink your bullshit and your lies down with that Jim Jones Kool-Aid for all I give a fuck;
Just stuff it.

No More:

Your failure to enact any meaningful legislation, or to step above the fray and carry yourself with honesty and dignity in addressing the American people, your secrecy, half-truth, white lies and those of the bold faced variety have taken their toll on me, and on all of us for that matter.

The only transparency you’re concerned with is the ability to carry out an agenda and it’s policies so transparent nobody else can see it. The only rights are those you take away and give to the executive branch of government so you may better remain within the shadows, safely invisible while wearing the ring you once wished to destroy and now adore.

The only problem is, you’re not Tolkien, this is not “The Lord of the Rings” and there is no Gollum saving you from your poor choices and ultimate frailty of your will; There are no Elven ships to take you from these shores to Vallinor to save you from the burden of your choices it was a fictional fantasy;

There’s just us,

For you to restore your faith to me, to us, all you must do is make good on those words you speak, as opposed to them being merely empty words.  That is the true measure of a man and where you consistently come up short.  Until you honor your word as your bond, until you become worthy of the Nobel prize you won, until you step from the shadows, bringing your actions clearly into the light-as they should be, until you stop using the justice department to unjustly persecute those who embarrass you by telling people the truth you’re unwilling to tell; you are not a leader, or a man.

In the meantime,

I’ve had it!