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U.S. Military Recruits Sesame Street

Elmo Pimps War: Military Recruits Sesame Street
by C. L. Cook
The BBC World News reports the iconic children's program, Sesame Street is broadcasting episodes to help kids cope with the long absence of their service personnel parents "manning" the walls of the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
 
"Mommy and Daddy are going away to help some folks overseas" sings Elmo, trying to explain to the kinder of the United States their parents' absence.

It's not the first time the venerable characters have been used to forward America's military ambitions; back in 2003, frustrated  U.S. interrogators used the theme music from Sesame Street and Barney, the famous purple dinosaur, played at ear-splitting volumes to "break" recalcitrant Iraqi "detainees," among other methods made infamous later.

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"Ethics" Committee Stifles Mulroney-Schreiber Court Review

Federal Ethics Comm. Stifles Review of Mulroney-Schreiber Situation
by Democracy Watch
Federal Ethics Commissioner files motion to try to stop court review of her ruling that Prime Minister and his cabinet are not in a conflict of interest over Mulroney-Schreiber situation, but rules Liberal MP is in a conflict of interest.
 
The motion is an attempt to stop a review by the Court of her ruling issued on January 7, 2008 which concluded that, even when the Prime Minister's and his Cabinet ministers' own actions and the actions of their close associate Brian Mulroney are in question, they are not covered by the Conflict of Interest Act and it is fine for them to:
 
  • choose whether an inquiry into the Mulroney-Schreiber situation will take place;
  • to set the scope of the inquiry;
  • choose the inquiry commissioner(s) who will judge them and Mr. Mulroney, and;
  • to control the legal proceedings against Karlheinz Schreiber even though he made allegations about them.


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Canada: 'Throttling' Net Neutrality

Stop The Throttler!
by StopTheThrottler.ca
Bell and Rogers are changing how the Internet works by dictating how Web users access content. Bell is limiting Sympatico subscribers from downloading content. Subscribers of Internet hosting companies that buy wholesale services from Bell have already been feeling the pinch since mid-March.
 
This policy is more accurately referred to as ‘throttling’, and it fundamentally changes how the Internet works.
 
Meanwhile, Rogers, in addition to its own traffic shaping activities, has announced it will charge subscribers more for Internet activities that use more bandwidth. Instead of users deciding how we use the Internet, ISPs are now trying "shape" our traffic.

 


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Kennedy at Home: Terminal Diagnosis

Senator Edward Kennedy Released from Hospital
by CBC News
Accompanied by friends and family, Senator Edward Kennedy slowly walked out of a Massachusetts hospital Wednesday, a day after being diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor that experts say is almost certainly fatal.
 
Senator Edward Kennedy waves as he leaves Mass. General Hospital in Boston Tuesday. (CBC)

A crowd of well-wishers applauded the 76-year-old Democrat as emerged from the doors of Massachusetts General in Boston. He smiled, waved back and gave a thumbs-up. His dogs greeted him at the hospital door.
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Torturing Iron Man

Torturing Iron Man: The Strange Reversals of a Pentagon Blockbuster
by Nick Turse
"Liberal Hollywood" is a favorite whipping-boy of right-wingers who suppose the town and its signature industry are ever-at-work undermining the U.S. military. In reality, the military has been deeply involved with the film industry since the Silent Era.
 
Today, however, the ad hoc arrangements of the past have been replaced by a full-scale one-stop shop, occupying a floor of a Los Angeles office building. There, the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and the Department of Defense itself have established entertainment liaison offices to help ensure that Hollywood makes movies the military way.

What they have to trade, especially when it comes to blockbuster films, is access to high-tech, tax-payer funded, otherwise unavailable gear. What they get in return is usually the right to alter or shape scripts to suit their needs. If you want to see the fruits of this relationship in action, all you need to do is head down to your local multiplex. Chances are that Iron Man -- the latest military-entertainment masterpiece -- is playing on a couple of screens.
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McCain and the "Enron Loophole"

McCain Defends 'Enron Loophole'
by Jason Leopold
Sen. John McCain says he opposes the $307 billion farm bill because it would dole out wasteful subsidies, but his chief economic adviser Phil Gramm also wants to stop its proposed regulation of energy futures trading, a market that was famously abused when Enron Corp. manipulated California’s electricity prices in 2001.

Clearing the way for that California price gouging, Gramm, as a powerful Texas senator in 2000, slipped an Enron-backed provision into the Commodities Futures Modernization Act that exempted from regulation energy trading on electronic platforms.

Then, over the next year, Enron – with Gramm’s wife Wendy serving on its board of directors – worked to create false electricity shortages in California, bilking consumers out of an estimated $40 billion.


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The Last Roundup: Are You on the List?

The Last Roundup: Is the Government Compiling a Secret List of Citizens to Detain Under Martial Law?
by Christopher Ketcham   
ARE YOU ON THE LIST?
 
The federal government has been developing a highly classified plan that will override the Constitution in the event of a major terrorist attack.
 
In the spring of 2007, a retired senior official in the U.S. Justice Department sat before Congress and told a story so odd and ominous, it could have sprung from the pages of a pulp political thriller. It was about a principled bureaucrat struggling to protect his country from a highly classified program with sinister implications. Rife with high drama, it included a car chase through the streets of Washington, D.C., and a tense meeting at the White House, where the president's henchmen made the bureaucrat so nervous that he demanded a neutral witness be present.

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Another False Charge in the Service of War "Amended"

Weapons Were Not Made In Iran After All
by CASMII
In a sharp reversal of its longstanding accusations against Iran arming militants in Iraq , the US military has made an unprecedented albeit quiet confession: the weapons they had recently found in Iraq were not made in Iran at all.

According to a report by the LA Times correspondent Tina Susman in Baghdad: "A plan to show some alleged Iranian-supplied explosives to journalists last week in Karbala and then destroy them was cancelled after the United States realized none of them was from Iran.
 
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B.C. Liberals Election Gag Campaign Set to Kick Off with Bill 42

BC Liberals want you to Just Shut Up
by Health Employees Union of B.C. (HEU)
HEU has joined a number of other B.C. public-sector unions in their call on the Liberal government to withdraw legislation that severely restricts public-interest advertising and communication in the five months leading up to the May 2009 provincial election.

Bill 42, the Election Amendment Act, would eliminate the kind of information campaigns about hospital closures and service cuts launched by HEU in the lead up to the 2005 provincial election.


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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook - Hal Sisson, Aida Mashari, J-9 Mon. May 19, 2008

This Week on Gorilla Radio
by C. L. Cook
This week on GR: Victoria author and 9/11 Truther, Hal Sisson digging up the facts on the crime of the century; Aida Mashari and Canada Out of Afghanistan tagging along with the Victoria Day parade; Janine Bandcroft brings us up to speed with all that's good to do in the coming week.
 
 
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, 104.3 cable, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://GorillaRadioBlog.blogspot.com


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Congress' "Bake Sale" for Boy Scouts

Congress's $3.5 million "Bake Sale" for the Boy Scouts
by Chris Rodda
Alright, it isn't actually a bake sale, but it might as well be. On May 15, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 5872, an act to:
  • "[R]equire the Secretary of the Treasury to mint coins in commemoration of the centennial of the Boy Scouts of America, and for other purposes."
The other purposes? The sale of the coins by the Secretary of the Treasury, with a surcharge on each coin sold to "be paid to the National Boy Scouts of America Foundation." In other words, this is a congressionally mandated fundraiser for the Boy Scouts.


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