Center for an Informed America

 


Newsletter #1
May 18, 2002



Greetings to all subscribers, old and new!!

I've been away from my computer for quite some time now, due to the fact that I seem to have picked up a particularly nasty flu bug immediately upon my return from a much-needed vacation. During my absence, I decided to try a new approach to putting together mailings for this mailing list: instead of sending out articles of interest as I come upon them, I am instead going to send out a newsletter that will have links to articles of interest interspersed with irreverent and inflammatory commentary. I am anticipating sending them out on a weekly basis. These newsletters will also be posted on my site.

This, obviously, is the first such newsletter.

The question is: where do I begin? A mountain of e-mails has piled up in my in-box. I will attempt here to sift through them all and sort out just the very best of the articles that have backed-up in my absence.

The biggest story right now is, of course, that George Bush had advance warnings of the impending September 11 attacks. What is the world coming to? Next thing you know, they'll be saying that Bush didn't really win the election. Oh ... wait a minute .... I guess they already have. Here's a little story entitled "Quietly Florida Admits 2000 Election Fraud": http://www.truthout.org/docs_02/04.28A.Election.Fraud.htm
And, just for good measure, here's an article declaring that Bush's 'ranch' is pretty much of a fraud as well: http://www.democrats.com/view2.cfm?id=6687
And speaking of Florida, which - were it to be severed from the rest of the United States - would easily qualify as the most corrupt banana republic on the planet, it seems that some of the Venezuelan coup planners have recently taken up residence there. Now isn't that surprising? http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/world/americas/3140059.htm

As for the advance warnings of the 'terrorist' attacks, I could provide a link here to the story -- but why bother? Pick up any newspaper or turn on any TV news program and you can hear all about it. Everyone is reporting it -- which begs the rather obvious question of: why?

Why has this suddenly become such a hot story? There have been reports for months of advance warnings coming from foreign intelligence services, foreign heads of state, FBI and CIA assets, flight school instructors, etc. None of these were deemed to be worth reporting by America's great, free press -- until now (in case you are wondering who controls that press, check out this site:  http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/cool/giants/index.html)

There is, rest assured, a reason that this is now being widely reported by the U.S. media. What that reason is though is difficult to discern at this time.

Another big story right now is that Jimmy Carter is visiting Cuba. I want to believe that Mr. Jimmy is sincere in his motives. I really do. The problem is that his record as president and as governor of Georgia, when stripped clean of the media gloss, just doesn't really allow me to. Anyway, for what it's worth, here is a better-than-average story about the historic visit, courtesy of the World Socialist Web Site:  http://www.wsws.org/articles/2002/may2002/cuba-m15.shtml

And speaking of Cuba, here is a link to the text of an uncharacteristically short speech that Fidel Castro delivered on March 22 in Monterey, Mexico to the International Conference on Financing for Development. U.S. delegates to the conference, on orders from their bosses at the White House, walked out on the speech:  http://www.counterpunch.com/castrospeech.html

A big story last week was that Ozzy Osbourne paid a visit to the Washington Correspondent's Dinner to hob-nob with George Bush, as a guest of the newly-sculpted - but still rather scary looking - Greta Van Susteren. Now aside from the fact that the visit raises serious questions about Ozzy's judgment in choosing dining partners, there was something curiously missing in coverage of the event -- outrage from Bush's core supporters.

Doesn't it seem at all curious to anyone that a man whose primary support comes from the Christian Conservative, 'family values' crowd, a man who is claimed to have brought morality back to the White House, would break bread and crack jokes with a man whose entire professional life has centered around promoting satanism, drunken debauchery, and drug abuse -- a man whose 'reality' television series gives a whole new meaning to the term 'family values'?

One can imagine the outcry from the Pat Robertsons, the Jerry Falwells and the Gary Bauers had Clinton chosen to warmly embrace a visit from Mr. Osbourne. The headlines would have read something like: "Clinton Bites Head Off a Bat." Rush Limbaugh would have prattled on endlessly about how Clinton had demeaned the dignified Correspondent's Dinner. I haven't heard any similar criticism of Bush though. Funny how that works.

Moving along then to more substantial matters, here is a story that will shock even the most cynical of readers: the L.A. Times reported that "The nation's high school seniors are all but clueless when it comes to understanding essential truths about America's past." Hard to believe, I know, but apparently it is true -- America's high school students don't know their ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to the history of this nation. http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/front/la-000033108may10.story?coll=la%2Dhome%2Dtodays%2Dtimes

Now that could be because the 'powers that be' don't want the people of this country to have any sort of an historical education, lest they catch on that this country isn't really all that it is cracked up to be. But I would never suggest such a thing for fear that someone might label me a 'conspiracy theorist.' Speaking of which, here is what ABC News had to say recently about 'conspiracy theorists':  http://abcnews.go.com/sections/us/DailyNews/conspiracy020417.html
And here's a nifty little article from a law school professor - entitled "Will the Real Paranoids Please Raise Their Hands?" - that asks the pertinent question of who the real conspiracy theorists are: http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/shaffer8.html

In any event, it appears that it isn't just Americans that need to bone up on their history. The good people of Italy might like to think about dusting off some history books as well. Why? Well, according to the L.A. Times, it is "A New Day for Il Duce." Yes, that's right, a new generation of Italians is embracing the memory of the late uber-fascist, Benito Mussolini: http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-051002duce.story

Let's see now ... what else has happened in my absence? Oh yes, Catholic priests are still molesting the youngest members of their flocks, the Catholic Church is still stonewalling and covering up for their pedophilic priests, and all the parishioners who dutifully drop their hard-earned money in the collection plate every week are still bankrolling payoffs to the pedo priests' victims.

And while we're on the subject of pedophilia, it seems that the recently assassinated Dutch politician, Pim Fortuyn, besides being an immigrant-bashing fascist, was also an avid supporter of pedophilia. What a tragic loss for mankind that Mr. Fortuyn is no longer with us:  http://www.scotlandonsunday.com/international.cfm?id=513942002

Meanwhile, debate still rages about celibacy in the priesthood. Here's a news flash: if celibacy were the only problem, then one would think that most priests could find themselves mistresses without too much trouble. For someone with a non-pedophilic sex drive, children are not a reasonable substitute for an adult sexual relationship. Celibacy is not the problem (though it is a ridiculous church policy); pedophilia is the problem.

Debate also rages within the church about how pedo priests should be dealt with. The holiest one recently summoned his flock to hammer out the details of what church policy should be. I have a hot tip for the church and its men of the cloth: it isn't up to you to decide what the policy should be on priests who molest children. There are laws on the books that dictate how such behavior should be dealt with. And guess what? Those laws apply to you.

Having then pissed off a few Catholics in the crowd, let's turn our attention to the subject of Zionism, which will undoubtedly draw the usual amount of hate mail from those who like to cry "anti-semitism." You know who you are. You're the ones who equate any attack on the policies of the Zionist government of Israel with an attack on the religion of Judaism.

But guess what? You're all full of shit. The truth is that there is an enormous difference between Zionism and Judaism. Judaism is a religion, whereas Zionism is essentially a form of fascism. I have no problem with the practice of any religion. But I do have a big problem with the practice of overt fascism, particularly when the perpetrators of that practice cast themselves as the victims of persecution so as to cut off any meaningful debate on the real issues.

And believe it or not, so do a good many people of the Jewish faith. But you don't have to take my word for it.
Here is a website hosted by Jews United Against Zionism:  http://www.netureikarta.org/
Here's a book entitled Zionism In the Age of the Dictators: A Reappraisal: http://www.codoh.com/zionweb/zizad/zizad.html
And here is another entitled The Hidden History of Zionism: http://www.balkanunity.org/mideast/english/zionism/
And yet another entitled The History of the Palestine-Israel Conflict:http://www.cactus48.com/truth.html
And here is a page with links to a number of Jewish anti-Zionist websites: http://www.inin.net/jewnotzionist.htm

So if you want to send hate mail accusing someone of being anti-semitic, or of supporting terrorism, or of siding with suicide bombers, go ahead and send it to any of those sites. They will appreciate hearing from you. As will journalist Robert Fisk. Maybe you can even threaten his life, as the self-important, vastly-overrated actor John Malkovich has done. Here Mr. Fisk discusses the venomous e-mails he has been receiving for daring to tell the truth about the Israeli/Palestinian situation:  http://argument.independent.co.uk/commentators/story.jsp?story=294787

Here is one other thing to consider: Israel pretty much does what Washington tells it to do (in private that is; I'm not talking here about the statements issued from Washington for public consumption). And what enables Israel to do Washington's bidding is a vast arsenal of U.S.-supplied weaponry -- weaponry that is paid for with the tax dollars of rank-and-file Americans, and without which there would be no occupied territories, and no decimated refugee camps.

And who exactly is it in Washington that is currently drafting U.S. policy and supplying U.S. arms? It is, of course, members of the Bush mob. And what exactly was the source of the Bush family's considerable wealth? Last time I checked, it came from direct complicity in funding the rise and reign of the Third Reich:  http://www.clamormagazine.org/issue14.3_feature.html

In other news, apparently the Bush administration has now come up with a new way to silence its critics. This photo posted by Yahoo! News shows the new technique being utilized against Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa: http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/020513/161/1jdg7.html

Here are a couple of reports from the "Big Brother" file. This one concerns 'robot cameras' that can tell what you are going to do before you even do it: http://sf.indymedia.org/news/2002/04/124311.php
And this one reveals that some people have already learned the hard way that Big Brother has been turning up everywhere these days: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/05/15/eveningnews/main509140.shtml

And here are a couple of reports on advances being made in what the big boys in Washington like to call "Non-Lethal Weapons." And what, you may ask, are these weapons to be used for? Among other things, to deprive you of your alleged constitutional right to lawfully assemble to protest the policies of your government.
Here's a 'fact sheet' from the U.S. Air Force: http://www.de.afrl.af.mil/factsheets/activedenial.html
And here's an article from New Scientist magazine:  http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99992254

And what else, you may be wondering, have America's scientists been up to lately? Glad you asked. Some of them have been busy creating remote-controlled rats:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,708454,00.html
Others have been engaged in illegal biowarfare research: http://www.villagevoice.com/issues/0220/kick.php
Still others are working to achieve military superiority in space: http://www.globenet.free-online.co.uk/articles/spacesupremacy.htm

Some time ago, a friend of mine gave me a photocopied version of a fantastic little 'comic' book entitled Addicted to war: Why the U.S. Can't Kick Militarism, by Joel Andreas. First published in 1993, it was - until recently - out of print. I recently discovered that it has now been republished.

I can't recommend this book highly enough. At 64 pages, it is a quick read, though there is a wealth of information packed in its pages, all backed up with abundant footnotes. Pick up a copy for yourself at: http://addictedtowar.com/
It will be the best $8.00 you ever spent.

Here's another interesting little tidbit of information: the CIA is getting a massive funding increase. You may remember the CIA as the government agency that allegedly failed miserably to pick up the slightest hint of the impending attacks on September 11, which is what they are purportedly paid to do -- and extremely well paid, I might add.

That failure was due, so we are to believe, to the fact that the agency was previously underfunded. It's kind of funny though, because as our schools have continued for decades to perform miserably in their purported function, we have been assured repeatedly that this is not due to underfunding. The very same politicians who now wish to throw truckloads of money at the CIA have been telling us for years that you can't solve a problem just by throwing money at it. Apparently that rule doesn't apply to the CIA:  http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20020418/pl_nm/budget_cia_dc_1&printer=1

That's about all that I have for now, except to take this opportunity to respond to those of you who wrote to me following the last mailing to inquire as to the authorship and significance of the following poem, which appeared in that mailing:

We chase misprinted lies
We face the path of time
And yet I fight
And yet I fight
This battle all alone
No one to cry to
No place to call home

My gift of self is raped
My privacy is raked
And yet I find
And yet I find
Repeating in my head
If I can't be my own
I'd feel better dead

Those words were penned in 1993 by Layne Staley, the former frontman for the Seattle 'grunge' band Alice in Chains. Layne was a gifted artist who live a tortured existence. He was, alas, the product of a traumatic childhood. Throughout his adult life, Staley attempted to dull the pain with a chronic addiction to heroin. Though his life was forever in turmoil, it was clear that beneath it all resided a gentle, compassionate soul. Layne was found dead in his apartment on April 19, 2002. He will be missed.

And, finally, for those who were skeptical of the earlier story about the dumbing down of America's high schoolers, I leave you with this list of analogies and metaphors that have appeared in the essays of America's students. This arrived via e-mail, and I cannot vouch for its authenticity -- but it sure is funny. And as someone once said, you should "always leave them laughing."

Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had its 2 other sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.
Sue Lin Chong, Washington

His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.
Chuck Smith, Woodbridge

He spoke with wisdom that can only come from experience, like a Guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.
Joseph Romm, Washington

Her hair glistened in the rain like nose hair after a sneeze.
Chuck Smith, Woodbridge

Her eyes were like two brown circles with big black dots in the center.
Russell Beland, Springfield

Bob was as perplexed as a hacker who means to access T:flw.quid55328.com\aaakk/ch@ung but gets T:\flw.quidaaakk/ch@ung by mistake.
Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills

Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.
Unknown

He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.
Jack Bross, Chevy Chase

The hailstones leaped from the pavement, just like maggots when you fry them in hot grease.
Gary F. Hevel, Silver Spring

Long separated by cruel fate, star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.
Jennifer Hart, Arlington

A politician was gone but unnoticed, like the period after the Dr. on a Dr Pepper can.
Wayne Goode, Madison,AL

They lived in a typical suburban neighborhood with picket fences that resembled Nancy Kerrigan's teeth.
Paul Kocak, Syracuse NY

John & Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.
Russell Beland, Springfield

The thunder was ominous sounding, much like the sound of a thin sheet of metal being shaken backstage during the storm scene in a play.
Barbara Fetherolf, Alexandria

The red brick wall was the color of a brick-red Crayola crayon.
Unknown

He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant and she was the East River.
Brian Broadus, Charlottesville

Even in his last years, Grandpappy had a mind like a steel trap, only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.
Sandra Hull, Arlington

The door had been forced, as forced as the dialogue during the interview portion of "Jeopardy!"
Jean Sorensen, Herndon

Shots rang out, as shots are wont to do.
Jerry Pannullo, Kensington

The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.
Malcolm Fleschner, Arlington

The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.
Malcolm Fleschner, Arlington

"Oh, Jason, take me!" she panted, her breasts heaving like a college freshman on $1-a-beer night.
Bonnie Speary Devore, Gaithersburg

He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.
John Kammer, Herndon

Her artistic sense was exquisitely refined, like someone who can tell butter from I Can't Believe It's Not Butter.
Barbara Collier, Garrett Park

She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog makes just before it throws up.
Susan Reese, Arlington

It came down the stairs looking very much like something no one had ever seen before.
Marian Carlsson, Lexington

The knife was as sharp as the tone used by Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Tex.) in her first several points of parliamentary procedure made to Rep. Henry Hyde (R-Ill.) in the House Judiciary Committee hearings on the impeachment of President William Jefferson Clinton.
J. F. Knowles, Springfield

The ballerina rose gracefully en pointe and extended one slender leg behind her, like a dog at a fire hydrant.
Jennifer Hart, Arlington

The revelation that his marriage of 30 yrs had disintegrated because of his wife's infidelity came as a rude shock, like a surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM.
Paul J. Kocak, Syracuse

The dandelion swayed in the gentle breeze like an oscillating electric fan set on medium.
Unknown

It was an American tradition, like fathers chasing kids around with power tools.
Brian Broadus, Charlottesville

He was deeply in love. When she spoke, he thought he heard bells, as if she were a garbage truck backing up.
Susan Reese, Arlington

She was as easy as the "TV Guide" crossword.
Tom Witte, Gaithersburg

Her eyes were like limpid pools, only they had forgotten to put in any pH cleanser.
Chuck Smith, Woodbridge

She grew on him like she was a colony of E. coli and he was room-temperature Canadian beef.
Brian Broadus, Charlottesville

She walked into my office like a centipede with 98 missing legs.
Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park

Her voice had that tense, grating quality, like a first- generation thermal paper fax machine that needed a band tightened.
Sue Lin Chong, Washington

It hurt the way your tongue hurts after you accidentally staple it to the wall.
Brian Broadus, Charlottesville




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