New York City Meltdown: With a Whimper, Not a Bang… the Old Neighborhood Empties

Economic Dirty Bomb Goes Off in New York: With a Whimper, Not a Bang… the Old Neighborhood Empties
by Tom Engelhardt
A block from my apartment, on a still largely mom-and-pop, relatively low-slung stretch of Broadway, two spanking new apartment towers rose just as the good times were ending for New York. As I pass the tower on the west side of Broadway each morning, one of its massive ground-floor windows displays the same eternal message in white letters against a bright red background: "Locate yourself at the center of the fastest expanding portion of the affluent Upper West Side."

Successive windows assure any potential renter that this retail space (10,586 square feet available! 110 feet of frontage! 30 foot ceilings! Multiple configurations possible!) is conveniently located only "steps from the 96th Street subway station, servicing 11 million riders annually."

Here's the catch, though: That building was completed as 2007 ended and yet, were you to peer through a window into the gloom beyond, you would make out only a cavernous space of concrete, pillars, and pipes. All those "square feet" and not the slightest evidence that any business is moving in any time soon. Across Broadway, the same thing is true of the other tower.
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Dumb George Bush Woos Numb Calgary

Dumb George Bush Woos Numb Canadians in Calgary - Splitting the Sky jailed for trying to "citizen arrest" this war criminal!  
by MNN
Former U.S. President, George W. Bush, was in Calgary with "cowboy" hat in hand on March 17 to seek the affection of the men and women attending the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association meeting CEPA.  It was sponsored by the Calgary Chamber of Commerce and law firms Ernst and Young and Bennett Jones.  1,300 corporate business types paid $400 a plate.  One Bush fan cooed, "He must be intelligent to be so witty".  Doesn't he know that a team of speech writers carefully crafted every word he said?  

Bush came to "Texas North", as Calgary is called, to help his international andAmerican cohorts scoop out more Indigenous resources such as water, gas and oil.  He wants the corporations to stay in private hands so they can grab 6 trillion cu. ft. of natural gas; 950 million barrels of liquid hydrocarbons; lay 100,000 km. of pipe over our territory; and pocket $67 billion from exports of our resources while polluting all our territories and waters.    

His topic appeared to be "Listen to George Bush on how to destroy and bankrupt countries, businesses and the people".  The enthralled audience heaped praise on this braggart who demolished countries through brutal wars, killing millions, doing away with civil liberties, breaking international laws, circumventing the Geneva accords and tearing down the global economy.  He and his friends know how to take the cream when the economy melts down and the taxpayers are left holding the bag.    
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Shell Oil to Planet Earth: Drop Dead

Shell Oil to Planet Earth: Drop Dead
by Chris Floyd (Empire Burlesque)
The Guardian reports on some admirable candor from the paladins at Shell Oil, still raking in gargantuan profits despite the global economic cratering. Shell says it is dropping its much-publicized work on alternative energy sources – because the bucks just aren't big enough.
Green energy, it seems, just  doesn't produce enough long green for the Oil Lords.
Instead, they are going to keep scraping out carbon from the guts of the earth – and going in for biofuels, i.e., diverting vast acreages of arable land from food production for the world's poor to energy for the world's rich.
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What Has Happened to my Country?

George Galloway - What has happened to my country?
by Richard Kastelein - (Publisher, Atlantic Free Press)
Having been an expat for more than 20 years - I have only spent a few years in Canada since 1987 - I missed the countries' transition to conservatism... for the greater part. Stephen Harper, Bush's enfant terrible - and his band of corporate cronies - have always seemed like an overspill of American Conservatism creeping north and I always had enough faith in the sensible people of Canada to control the beast and vote out the selfish, xenophobic, vermin that prey on fear and use it to push their political agenda.

But I knew things had changed when I came home one trip about a decade ago to British Columbia for a visit and dad was reading the Toronto Globe and Mail. Apparently it was the last vestige of progressive rhetoric in the country. It was a paper he would not wipe his ass with ten years earlier. He said there was virtually no progressive mainstream media left in B.C. and he found himself buying a newspaper from the other side of the country just to get away from the incessant pounding of the conservatives in the provincial media. I was surprised.

How things change.
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In His Own Words: "Canada Can't Muzzle Me!"

Canada Can't Muzzle Me
by George Galloway
The Canadian immigration minister Jason Kenney gazetted in the Sun yesterday morning that I was to be excluded from his country because of my views on Afghanistan. That's the way the rightwing, last-ditch dead-enders of Bushism in Ottawa conduct their business.

Kenney is quite a card. A quick trawl establishes he's a gay-baiter, gung-ho armchair warrior, with an odd habit of exceeding his immigration brief. Three years ago he attacked the pro-western Lebanese prime minister, Fuad Siniora, for being ungrateful to Canada for its support of Israeli bombardment of his country.
Most curiously of all, in 2006 he addressed a rally of the so-called People's Mujahideen of Iran, a Waco-style cult, banned in the European Union as a terrorist organization. On one level being banned by such a man is like being told to sit up straight by the hunchback of Notre Dame or being lectured on due diligence by Conrad Black. On another, for a Scotsman to be excluded from Canada is like being turned away from the family home.

But what are my views on Afghanistan which the Canadian government does not want its people to hear?
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Forget Guantanamo Close the Hellholes Here

by Sherwood Ross
From Florida to California, America’s dehumanizing prisons confront President Obama and our governors with a challenge every bit as daunting as Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib.  In California, the state’s 33 adult prisons teem with nearly double the inmates they were designed to hold,” The New York Times reports. In Florida, officials say they must build 19 more prisons over the next five years.
In both states, advocacy groups would rather see non-violent prisoners nearing the end of their sentences released early than build more new bunks. Barney Bishop, president of the influential business lobby Associated Industries of Florida, has released a position paper calling for a halt to the scheduled construction of three new, 1,300-bed prisons at a cost of $300 million. “It doesn’t make sense to me,” Bishop told the Miami Herald.
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Why Bar George? The Last Time Galloway Came to Canada

The Last Time George Galloway Came to Canada
by C. L. Cook
Canada's New Government has banned British parliamentarian, George Galloway entry into Canada. This interview recorded by the Canadian Broadcast Corporation a couple years back may explain more about why he's not to be allowed to address the Canadian people on his planned 'Siege-Buster Tour' of the country.


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Torture Fan Yoo's Blues: "Hippies Ruined My Career"

John Yoo: UC Berkeley Is a "Magnet for Hippies, Protesters and Left-Wing Activists"
Jason Leopold, (t r u t h o u t | Perspective)
John Yoo doesn't have any regrets about the controversial legal opinions he wrote for the White House - many of which were later withdrawn and repudiated - that gave former President George W. Bush unfettered and unchecked power in the aftermath of 9/11.

In a little known interview with the Orange County Register, published March 3, Yoo said he doesn't "think he would have made the basic decisions differently." However, he said he would have polished the memos up a bit and spent more time on legal research had he known the memos would be released publicly.

"These memos I wrote were not for public consumption," Yoo told the OC Register. "They lack a certain polish, I think - would have been better to explain government policy rather than try to give unvarnished, straight-talk legal advice. I certainly would have done that differently. [...] "I think the job of a lawyer is to give a straight answer to a client. One thing I sometimes worry about is that lawyers in the future in the government are going to start worrying about, 'What are people going to think of me?' Your client the president, or your client the justice on the Supreme Court, or your client this senator, needs to know what's legal and not legal. And sometimes, what's legal and not legal is not the same thing as what you can do or what you should do."

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The Next Chapter: Intifada III?

Intifada: A Third Chapter?
by Ramzy Baroud
Though the dust has settled in Gaza, the rubble from the untold number of demolished buildings, homes and mosques is far from being cleared away. Graves continue to receive victims, young and old alike, from Israel's most recent offensive. And in the midst of this, with the hopes of some respite and recovery on the horizon, rumors of a third Intifada swell among politicians, scholars and everyday people alike.

While the first and second Palestinian uprisings were spontaneous and natural responses to institutionalized injustice, and while they fostered a great sense of community and brotherhood among Palestinians everywhere, the many years of uprisings mark some of the most painful years in Palestinian history.

It's not easy to isolate specific dates and events that spark popular revolutions. Genuine collective rebellion cannot be rationalized through a coherent line of logic that elapses time and space; it's rather a culmination of experiences that unite the individual to the collective, their conscious and subconscious, their relationships with their immediate surroundings and with that which is not so immediate, all colliding and exploding into a fury that cannot be suppressed.
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Police Taught: Informed Citizen = Terrorist Threat

Police Trained Nationwide That Informed Americans Are Domestic Terrorists
by Paul Joseph Watson, Kurt Nimmo & Alex Jones
Law enforcement across the country are being educated that informed Americans who know their rights are dangerous and that cops are their enemy.
"Papers, please." 
A secret report distributed by the Missouri Information Analysis Center lists Ron Paul supporters, libertarians, people who display bumper stickers, people who own gold, or even people who fly a U.S. flag and equates them with radical race hate groups and terrorists.
This is merely the latest example in an alarming trend which confirms that law enforcement across the country is being trained that American citizens are a dangerous enemy.
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Little Jason Kenney Roars for Likud Lobby in Galloway Ban

Of MP's and Pipsqueaks: Little Jason Kenney Roars for Likud Lobby in Galloway Ban
by C. L. Cook
Jason Kenney, the current minister for citizenship and immigration has gone "over the edge" writes Thomas Walkom in today's Toronto Star.
"Over the edge"? - Immigration and citizenship minister Jason Kenney
Kenney, Walkom explains, has become increasingly erratic, last week cutting off federal funding to the Canadian Arab Federation (CAF), and yesterday refusing to question the Canadian Border Services decision to bar British MP George Galloway entry into Canada. Galloway, says the increasingly erratic border crew, poses a threat to Canada because he supports terrorists like Hamas and Hezbollah, and that's good enough for the federal government.
Though I agree with the tone of Walkom's piece, which correctly depicts Kenney and the Conservatives as the idiotic provincials they are, there is nothing "erratic" about the direction Canada has moved under Stephen Harper's leadership. Canada's border police consistently bar anti-war voices from being heard in this country, and their antipathy to any that would criticise the Harper world view, a world view now entirely in disrepute, is unswerving.
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'Street-Corner Cromwell' Galloway Gets No Special Treatment: Kenney Spokesperson

by CAF
Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Jason Kenney has just announced:
1) FUNDING CUT TO CANADIAN ARAB FEDERATION: Cutting the funding to the Settlement Service of the Canadian Arab Federation alleging CAF promotes terror. According to a release by CAF "This arbitrary decision made by the
Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, Jason Kenney, under the Harper leadership is an attempt to silence any dissenting voice and is being used as disciplinary action for CAF’s political stand which is contrary to their own. Furthermore, this is a warning to other non-profit, anti-racist organizations not to criticize members of the Canadian government or they may face a similar fate."

2) BANNING OF ANTI-WAR UK MP GEORGE GALLOWAY: Well known Respect Party MP from the UK George Galloway has been deemed "inadmissible on national security grounds" and been denied entry into Canada where he was scheduled to speak at a series of public forums. A minister's spokesman told reporters in the U.K that the Galloway is inadmissible on national security grounds because of his views on Afghanistan and the presence of Canadian troops there.
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