Aug
06

Six Months of Immunity

Tag: Impeachment

By David Swanson

Drafted in preparation for panel discussion at Veterans for Peace national convention August 7, 2009, on topic of "Holding the Architects of Illegal Wars and War Crimes Accountable."

Aug
06

Beating Up Congress Members

Tag: Political Ideas

With corporate thugs now assaulting Congress members to scare them out of providing anyone with healthcare, it's worth recalling that in earlier days of this nation, assaults on Congress members would result in being held in contempt of Congress -- literally held in prison. Nowadays, Congress won't even lock up people like Rove and Cheney who defy subpoenas, so the idea of Congress doing anything to protect itself against thuggery is pretty outlandish. However, if Congress passes a bill to fund and "support the thugs" I am certain it will attach a non-binding waiverable bench mark requiring consideration of drafting a report on the effectiveness of Congress-member-bashing.

Aug
05

Audio: Stephen Lendman and David Swanson

Tag: Health Care, Impeachment, Peace and War

Global Research News Hour host Stephen Lendman discusses war, peace, accountability, criminal prosecution, healthcare, and government reform with guest David Swanson: mp3.

Aug
05

Who Decides About War?

Tag: Peace and War

Who Decides About War? WhoDecidesAboutWar.org

National Conference on War Powers, Law, and Democracy October 2-3, 2009 Washington D.C.

Who decides about war and peace? Congress? The President? The Courts? The People?

What kind of national defense should the U.S. have? What type of military?

REGISTER NOW

"Who Decides About War" will be a national conference confronting essential questions raised by the U.S. invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. These questions are timely, as the political process that brought the United States into those wars is widely recognized today as having been flawed at best, dishonest at worst.

This engaging event will bring together activists and academics, public officials and veterans, lawyers and military families. We will use facilitated discussions, panel presentations, and workshops to accomplish two goals. First, to educate ourselves and each other about the issues involved, the state of the law, and alternatives. Second, to develop a statement of common principles leading to a more democratic, comprehensive, and durable national defense policy — one that will honor the Constitution and help keep the United States from entering into unnecessary wars.

For more information on the topics to be addressed at this conference, please see our backgrounder and the schedule.

Aug
04

Taking a Stand for Healthcare

Tag: Health Care
Aug
03

The Office of Unprofessional Irreponsibility

Tag: Political Ideas

With both Judiciary Committees (House and Senate) promising to do nothing about torture until Holder releases the OPR report, and Holder himself committed to doing nothing until he releases the OPR report, we've seen the OPR report predictably and endlessly delayed. While a Friday night in August has a certain attraction for releasing such a thing, why wouldn't Holder just delay for 6 more months? Give me one good reason.

Aug
03

Single-Payer Is Simple

Tag: Health Care

But it's hard to keep our facts straight. Here's an article by Sam Stein that misses the fact (according to Donna Smith who watched it) that during the committee debate on Kucinich's amendment some of the Republicans cited states' rights as their reason for voting yes. That may or may not have been sincere, but it was not just after-the-fact as Stein reports.

Also, nobody imagines a single Republican will vote for any healthcare bill, so I'm not sure why Stein suggests that question. The more interesting point, I think, is that the amendment did not cost the Dems a single BlueDog, and there's no evidence it would.

That, combined with progressives' desire to keep it in, ought to result in the language remaining. Except that there is a reason George Miller voted No. Barack Obama told him to.

Meanwhile, RealNews.com has produced a good video on single-payer with commentary by me. But the video begins by stating incorrectly that Weiner's amendment would have allowed states to do single-payer. As stated later in the video, that was Kucinich's amendment, which was voted on and passed. Weiner's amendment would have created national single-payer. And it is THAT which will be given a floor vote.

It's important to keep these points straight, because we have to demand passage of national single-payer while also demanding that states' right to create single-payer is left in the non-single-payer bill.

A citizen reports:

"Dennis Kucinich came today to Aurora I helped organize the talk. My main message is he was not pleased about HR 676 coming to the floor, he thought it was basically a trap where they were going to kill it and declare it dead ASAP. He pointed out there will be no mark up or hearings or debate-(he believed)... He thinks it will be voted on as soon as they get back and he thought Weiner made a poor choice and said he did not consult... Drop me a line if you want more info, but DK said he would be posting organizing tools on his website starting tomorrow. He said much much more important was HR 3200 keep his amendment. He said he may vote for 3200 if the amendment stays. He urged us in IL to organize around single payer in the state. Hopefully we will have video ready soon."

Photo by Chip.

Here's the latest from PDA.

And Robert Kuttner says: Do single-payer next year. But he fails to notice state single-payer language.

Rob Kall reports on Specter's waffling on single-payer and on teabaggers importing cabletvism (shouting and name-calling) to town hall meetings (meant to be places of discussion and debate).

Aug
01

Obama: "Laws should be applied to all of us, from humblest citizen to the president of the United States"

Tag: Civil Rights

Mike Tashman sent in this oldie but goodie:

From: senator_obama@obama.senate.gov To: ----------------- Sent: Fri, Mar 31, 2006 6:54 pm Subject: Message from Senator Barack Obama

Dear Michael:

Thank you for writing about Senator Russ Feingold's proposal to censure President Bush. I understand your strong feelings on this issue. While I share your frustration and anger, I do not think censure is justified at this time.

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