You Cannot Begin a Crime in Good Faith

Remarks at Democracy Convention in Minneapolis on Aug. 5, 2017

This morning we handed out flyers on Kellogg Boulevard in St. Paul. We encountered very few who knew why it is called that. Frank Kellogg was a hero in the sense that a whistleblower is a hero. He was a Secretary of State who had nothing but contempt for peace activism, until peace activism became too powerful, too mainstream, too irresistible. Then Kellogg changed his view, helped create the Kellogg-Briand Pact, and as Scott Shapiro read more

Prosecuting Famine Creation

Remarks at the Democracy Convention, Minneapolis, Minn., August 4, 2017

I was asked to speak about prosecuting weapons dealers and war makers with a focus on Saudi Arabia. There are, I think, many ways that one could go about that. I say this as a non-lawyer, with certain perverse preferences that lawyers generally don’t share.

For example it’s my belief that if a president declares a bill to be unconstitutional and simultaneously signs it into law, he hasn’t done something sophisticated and read more

Why We Can and Must End Our Greatest Crime

Remarks on August 3 at Democracy Convention in Minneapolis.

It’s unusual on Kellogg Blvd. in St. Paul to encounter anyone who knows why it’s named that. A bunch of us are going to go over there with flyers Saturday morning and I hope you’ll join us.

Nobel Peace Prize laureate Frank Kellogg of St. Paul has his name on the treaty whose creation was probably the single biggest news story of 1928, the Kellogg-Briand Pact, a treaty listed as in effect on the U.S. State Department’s website, a read more

Congressional Opponents of Sanctions As Nuts As Supporters

By David Swanson, American Herald Tribune

Both houses of Congress have now passed big new sanctions bills by veto-proof majorities, in fact with near unanimity. The vote this week in the House of Misrepresentatives was 419–3 on a bill to sanction Russia, Iran, and North Korea as punishment for primarily imaginary crimes, despite the sum total of the global legal bodies having asked the United States to judge these crimes, skip over a trial, and move right ahead with punishment being exactly equal read more

Why and How to Bring Environmental and Peace Movements Together

If war were moral, legal, defensive, beneficial to the spread of freedom, and inexpensive, we would be obliged to make abolishing it our top priority solely because of the destruction that war and preparations for war do as the leading polluters of our natural environment.

I happened to read a report this week from a U.S. environmental think tank that advocates for the U.S. read more

What’s Missing from Dunkirk Film

Yes, I’m going to tell you what’s missing from this film without watching the film. Trump has, as promised, made me so sick of winning that I really could enjoy watching a defeat film, but I think I’ll pass. If I’m wrong about what’s missing from it (I mean one of the many things that are, no doubt, missing from it), I promise that I will eat an entire plan for victory in Afghanistan annually for the next decade.

One of the oddest things about World War II is how it read more

Yet Another #People’sPlatform Has Usual Anti-People Problem

Donald Trump uses backdrops formed by crowds of boy scouts or soldiers. Progressive Democrats use documents called #People’sPlatform endorsed by numerous quasi-grassroots organizations.

Neither remotely approaches the far more desirable governance that one would get using direct democracy, governance by opinion poll. The reason for the pretense of populism is clear: people are wiser, even laboring under today’s relentless sewer of propaganda, than any contingent in either mega-party. read more