Just another Reality-based bubble in the foam of the multiverse.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Seymour Hersh says it plainly:

There's a lot of anxiety inside ... our professional military and our intelligence people. Many of them respect the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as much as anybody here, and individual freedom. So there's a tremendous sense of fear... One of the things that you could say is, we have been taken over basically by a cult, eight or nine neo-conservatives have somehow grabbed the government.

...What they have done is neutralize the C.I.A. ... the real goal of what Goss has done was not attack the operational people, but the intelligence people. There were people - serious senior analysts who disagree with the White House, with Cheney, basically, that's what I mean by White House, and Rumsfeld on a lot of issues, as somebody said, the goal in the last month has been to separate the apostates from the true believers. That's what's happening. The real target has been "diminish the agency."


Read the whole thing if you can.

I'd agree with it mostly.

My difference would be that it's not a cult, it's more like a Company.

When Clinton took over in '92, he moved a lot of the old Reagan-Bush operatives out. Some of these people were holdovers from the Nixon-Ford era when Poppy's faction ruled the roost. Tenet changed all that and modifed the CIA into an intelligence operation working closely with the NSA and other branches of government. Read Richard Clarke's Against All Enemies.

No more. Now it's just another arm of the Carlyle Group, where the heads of the old Company went to hide until the light of democratic scrutiny went out again.

More later on where the Strong Arm of the old Company went to, and how it's being resurrected now the lights are out indeed.

Thanks to Truthout for the link.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Giving us an offer we can't refuse

From the CIA's Global Outlook

Organized crime is likely to thrive in resource-rich states undergoing significant political and economic transformation...
• States that transition to one-party systems... will be vulnerable to corruption and attendant organized crime, particularly if their ideology calls for substantial government involvement in the economy...


One party systems? Sound like the views of anyone we know?

Organized crime groups usually do not want to see governments toppled but thrive in countries where governments are weak, vulnerable to corruption, and unable or unwilling to consistently enforce the rule of law.
• Criminal syndicates, particularly drug trafficking syndicates, may take virtual control of regions within failing states to which the central government cannot extend its writ.

-p.96

How awful. So what do these Organized Criminals do to the people in these countries?

In regions where high youth bulges intersect with historical patterns of patriarchal bias, the added pressure on infrastructure will mean intensified competition for limited public resources and an increased probability that females will not receive equal treatment...
In countries such as China and India, where there is a pervasive “son preference” reinforced by government population control policies, women face increased risk not only of female infanticide but also of kidnapping and smuggling from surrounding regions for the disproportionately greater number of unattached males. Thus far, the preference for male children in China has led to an estimated shortfall of 30 million women.
Such statistics suggest that the global female trafficking industry, which already earns an estimated $4 billion every year, is likely to expand, making it the second most profitable criminal activity behind global drug trafficking.

-p.38

Horrific indeed, you doubtless think, but what does this all have to do with the CIA? They're the good guys fighting this stuff, right? And Bu$hie's got a shiny new choice to run this merry band of pirates- excuse me, Patriots?

Perhaps it has to do with some of the rumors floating around about this Team Player's gaming history.

But what exactly did he do from "approximately the late 50's to approximately the early 70's" as "... a case officer, clandestine services office"?

Whatever it was, he became a millionaire from it. Stories about CIA involvement with drug traffic have been around awhile. Did Porter cash in on these while previously in the Company?

More recently, on the morning of 9/11/01, while Poppy Bu$h was meeting with Bandar, Sheik bin Laden and the boys, Porter was chatting with Pakistan's secret police head.

It's good to see while he was a Representative, he was keeping his hand in the Company business.

Regarding Justice

What the Rude Pundit says.

Monday, January 24, 2005

Well, at least he'll know what Osama thinks

Federal Appeals Court Judge Michael Chertoff’s ties to the financiers of the Sept. 11 attacks may prevent his confirmation as Homeland Security Chief.

According to a June 20, 2000 article in the The Record of Bergen County, New Jersey, Chertoff defended accused terrorist financier Dr. Magdy Elamir.

Elamir’s HMO was sued by the State of New Jersey to recoup $16.7 million in losses. At least $5.7 million went “to unknown parties... by means of wire transfers to bank accounts where the beneficial owner of the account is unknown,” according to the article.


Read the whole thing. It's priceless. Nice to know that the Pakastani arms dealers helping Osama and smuggling plutonium are on such good terms with the future head of Homeland Security.

Thanks to Oliver for the tip.

More on the new CIA management and their ties to organized crime, coming here soon. Heads in Europe are tiffed to think the CIA's more worried about Asian than European competition, but given Bu$hCo's shoot-first-and-look-for-WMD-later tendencies, maybe they should be relieved.

Besides, NeoCons have paranoia enough to go around.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Sunday funnies

Somewhere in the shadows of the White House and the Capitol this week, a small group of super-secret commandos stood ready with state-of-the-art weaponry to swing into action to protect the presidency, a task that has never been fully revealed before.

As part of the extraordinary army of 13,000 troops, police officers and federal agents marshaled to secure the inauguration, these elite forces were poised to act under a 1997 program that was updated and enhanced after the Sept. 11 attacks, but nonetheless departs from how the military has historically been used on American soil.


I'm sure John Titor, wherever he may be , would say this is sounding more and more familiar.

These commandos, operating under a secret counterterrorism program code-named Power Geyser, were mentioned publicly for the first time this week on a Web site for a new book, "Code Names: Deciphering U.S. Military Plans, Programs and Operation in the 9/11 World," (Steerforth Press). The book was written by William M. Arkin, a former intelligence analyst for the Army.

The precise number of these Special Operations forces in Washington this week is highly classified, but military officials say the number is very small. The special-missions units belong to the Joint Special Operations Command, a secretive command based at Fort Bragg, N.C., whose elements include the Army unit Delta Force.

In the past, the command has also provided support to domestic law enforcement agencies during high-risk events like the Olympics and political party conventions, according to the Web site of GlobalSecurity.org, a research organization in Alexandria, Va...

Mr. Arkin, in the online supplement to his book (codenames.org/documents.html), says the contingency plan, called JCS Conplan 0300-97, calls for "special-mission units in extra-legal missions to combat terrorism in the United States" based on top-secret orders that are managed by the military's Joint Staff and coordinated with the military's Special Operations Command and Northern Command...


Of course, redRumsfeld is pissed this got out.

...officials said the units operated in the United States under "special authority" from either the president or the secretary of defense.

Civilian and uniformed military lawyers said provisions in several federal statutes, including the Fiscal Year 2000 Defense Department Authorization Act, Public Law 106-65, permits the secretary of defense to authorize military forces to support civilian agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation...


Now, in one branch of the multiverse, these would be the best of the best. They would be super efficient, top secret Patriots charged with keeping us all safe from terrorists.

In our branch, though, it seems they're ...Special Operations forces who are hunting top insurgents in Iraq and Osama bin Laden in the mountainous wilds of Afghanistan and Pakistan... also conducting counterterrorism missions in support of civilian agencies in the United States..

Hmmm... that was Tora Bora , right?

It's a good thing these Special Ops knocking on doors at 2 AM in the morning are sensitive to political nuance. The politics driving them are those of the Secretary of Defense. Perhaps we can look forward to similar efficient operations.

As usual, there's so much of note in the The New York Pravda, excuse me, Times.

Officials in the Bush administration.. said NASA was one of the few agencies that would get a proposed budget increase next year. However, a mission to service Hubble, estimated to exceed $1 billion, will not be part of that package.

Real science takes a backseat to Mars Ho!

Aside from the usual porkbarrel profiteering, what's going on here?

Bu$hCo knows oil- and in a desert, where you find water, you also find oil. There is lots of evidence for water action on Mars. And who's in line for drilling for oil- er, excuse me, water on Mars? Halliburton.

And now they know about Titan, a moon of Saturn about the size of Mars, where water is a mineral, with rivers and oceans of hydrocarbon.

When faced with a finite resource, if you want to have a monopoly on energy, you don't develop renewable sources of fuel for everyone to use for global economic progress.

You make it so that you are the only person with access to that energy source.

Titan Ho!

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Riding the Tiger

Mapping the Global Future reveals an undercurrent obsession about the concomitanat rise of China and India in the world economy over the next 20 years, even as it reveals an awareness of America's desire to harness the manpower and technical skills of half of the world's population.

With the rise of the Asian giants, US economic and technological advantages may be vulnerable to erosion...

Realization of a Caliphate-like scenario would pose the biggest challenge
(to globalization- my insert here) because it would reject the foundations on which the current international system has been built...

The interdependence that results from globalization places increasing importance... on maintaining stability in the areas of the world that drive the global economy, where about two thirds of the world’s population resides...


Asia rises with the technical sophistication we must export to maintain our standard of living. Although hostile to the progressive agenda, the Islamic Caliphate provides a tool to slow down the social and economic advance of the part of the world the Western corporate structure depends on. In this way Asia is kept from using its own resources to become efficient economic competitors of the West.

Which is all great if you think people exist to serve the needs of corporations.

I know Cheneyburton does.

Speaking of Organized Crime, there are some very interesting things it says, which I'll cover in a later post.

But given his intimate connections with narcotics traffic, it's no surprise Porter Goss was Bu$hCo's choice to head the new CIA branch of the Company.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Why expand the War Against Terra? Why wreck the economy?

We see globalization—growing interconnectedness reflected in the expanded flows of information, technology, capital, goods, services, and people throughout the world—as an overarching “mega-trend,” a force so ubiquitous that it will substantially shape all the other major trends in the world of 2020. But the future of globalization is not fixed; states and nonstate actors—including both private companies and NGOs—will struggle to shape its contours. Some aspects of globalization—such as the growing global interconnectedness stemming from the information technology (IT) revolution— almost certainly will be irreversible. Yet it is also possible, although unlikely, that the process of globalization could be slowed or even stopped, just as the era of globalization in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was reversed by catastrophic war and global depression.

-pp10-11, Mapping the Global Future
Report of the National Intelligence Council’s
2020 Project, commisioned in 1997, a declassified
document from the CIA available here.

Warning: read the Privacy Notice.

They record who you are, baby.

The CIA is full of progressive individuals who want to see the best for all Americans.

Of course, Porter Goss wants to put a stop to that.

Big Time Dick had to visit Langley 8 times to wrestle Tenet into going along with the WMD party line.

They are not about to let a bunch of hard working, conscientious intelligence folks map a way into a peaceful, global world wide economy where the Company's Amurika with a Bu$h isn't on top.

More goodies from this dry declassified document from me over the next few days.

Herr Goss wants to hear nothing it says about the good we could do in the world.

But he didn't notice that with RPN-like logic it shines a light on exactly what Bu$hCo wants to do wrong and why they want to do it that way.

To Bu$hie's chagrin, it seems the CIA has some very progressive spooks still haunting that house.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

How do you fight an unWar?

“Everyone is saying, ‘You can’t be serious about targeting Iran. Look at Iraq,’” the former intelligence official told me. “But they say, ‘We’ve got some lessons learned—not militarily, but how we did it politically. We’re not going to rely on agency pissants.’ No loose ends, and that’s why the C.I.A. is out of there.”

Heavens, no, the C.I.A. field agents might find some unpleasant news the administration would rather ignore, and this time it's a Bu$hCo tool in charge.

Why would Bu$hCo possibly want to engage in war on yet another front, at a time of record deficits, when it's trying to destroy any guarantee of retirement benefits for most Americans?

It becomes apparent how you fight a global unWar: with an unDraft.

If there was massive poverty at home, the government could provide food and "housing" for any volunteers for Homeland Security abroad.

All those mountains in central asia, you know, will soak up a lot of troops in pacification...

Monday, January 17, 2005

Shell Game

The barrage of excellent posts in favor of social security continues throughout the blogsphere.

This is better stuff than I could write.

Thanks to Steve Gillard's excellent newsblog for the link.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Faith-based economics

If you haven't discovered the wonderful madness that is Fafblog, you need to.

The Medium Lobster has distilled the essence of Social Security Privitazation.

Meanwhile, for the Muggles, the New York Times continues to do the drumbeat for the "inevitable".

And Billmon makes a good strategic comparison .

One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just doesn't fit in...

In the swirling malstrom that is the Iraqi occupation, pro-Western groups (with maybe a few thousand adherents) have had a hard way to go of it.

But why torture and kill a Union leader , particularly when the Puppet Master Negroponte has set Allawi's puppet government to do what Saddam's regime did: ban Unions .

This smells like redRumsfeld's Special Ops in a Black Spot directed action to me.

And to follow up a post of a few days back: microwave weapons are now being used on Iraqi rioters.

Do they use the popcorn setting, I wonder?

And regarding such Patriot activity quietly sanctioned here in the USA: it seems to have been going on for quite some time now among scientists not towing the Bu$hCo War line.

And I thought I had it bad just losing my NIH funding. Another reason to use my pseudononymous email address...

Thanks to jb and Central Scruitinizer and cheney_usa on the incomparable Eschaton boards for the links. A note to those who want to regularly see what's going on in the wider world: there's no place better than the food fight at Atrios's place.

Friday, January 14, 2005

Where do you hide your soiled underwear?

Orcinus dissects the fall of Dan Rather to the DisInformation Machine.

When the Independent Review Panel that was assembled to examine the matter released its report earlier this week, it was clear that CBS' internal standards for reporting had been violated, and dismissing the four executives involved was appropriate. Most astonishing, certainly, was the CBS reporting team's failure to adequately establish the provenance of the so-called Killian memos....

Moreover, once CBS broadcast its report and the right-wing-spin-driven brouhaha erupted over the memos, the Beltway press treated the matter of Bush's military records as a tainted story. Any pursuit of the many remaining unanswered questions about Bush's records and the White House's mendacious explanations for them summarily disappeared from the media's radar...

However, the evidence... is overwhelming that Bush skipped out on his commitment by failing to take his flight physical and disappearing from duty for the ensuing year or more; the Killian memos, if they had been legitimate, only would have supplemented and shed some fresh light on what was already a mountain of established and confirmed data. ...Bush was AWOL, and every independent examination of his record confirms it.

Not only have the national media failed to pursue this, or even acknowledge it, they are now characterizing the CBS panel's report as actually vindicating Bush -- even though it specifically does not. For that matter, it doesn't even make a definitive finding on whether the "Killian memos" were authentic or not.


Where's the best place to stash your dirty laundry?

In plain sight.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Perception Management Tactics

One really good way to control your opposition is to eliminate them. It's been how the USA has kept control of it's own back yard for some time. The other is to use your enemy's emotional weakness to subvert their will, and that's where narcotics come in.

Links on the Bu$hCo use of Death Squads in Central America here .

Some sources on El Salvador here .

A listing of the some of the Contra-Cocaine connections here .

Monday, January 10, 2005

More on Black Spot

What the Rude Pundit says.

Follow his links for an education.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

The right man at the right place & time...

"Now I'm not suggesting that the principles, the basic treatment of human beings, should be revisited," Gonzales said. "But there has been some very preliminary discussion: Is this something that we ought to look at?"

And a good thing it is we're looking at those definitions of "basic treatment of human beings".

Just like it's a good thing our Man in Iraq, John Negroponte, has a plan.

He certainly has enough experience. Extensive experience, at that.

They say it well at Corrente:


Bush has taken Ollie North's "covert, off-the-shelf" operations capability off the shelf, and He's using it to run a dirty war in the Middle East. Let's connect a few dots:


(1) dirty war kingpin Negroponte being appointed ambassador to the current Iraqi state,

(2) CIA creature Allawi shooting six insurgents in the head, immediately following his appointment (the estimable Mr. Caulfield is all over this one; and Orcinus), whereupon Negroponte does a superb Sergeant Schulz imitation,

(3) the general who ran the torture wing at Abu Ghaib being put in charge of intelligence training (back here)

(4) an extra-constitutional chain of command ("Decoding the handwriting of The Fog Machine")

(5) spending that is not controlled by Congressional authority.


Doesn't this start to look exactly like the Latin American dirty wars that "our" government fought in the Reagan era? Sure looks like it to me. The same players, the same extra-constitutional techniques, the same goals.


Go read it all.

The next question is: when do they start bringing such effective policy tools home for use right here in the U.S.A.?

Saturday, January 08, 2005

... and you can cook your MREs, too

Lasers? Who needs 'em!

Plasma rifles? Sophisticated piffle.

D.o.D. 's got E-weapons to fry the Enemy's electronics.

But- mostly we're the ones that dig sophisticated hardware, aren't we?

But- water seems to resonate in the microwave region of the spectrum, doesn't it?

At least, that's how I cook popcorn.

This is just the latest Top Secret mondo cool death-ray weapon from your friends at DARPA . What, you thought with the passing of Poindexter from the Bu$hCo payroll DARPA's days were done? Think again .

Perhaps the most redeeming thing about this product of Military Intelligence is that the madmen working on it are just barely compent to log on to their laptops. Still, that doesn't justify the hundreds of billions they burn on their toys. Plus, if someone doesn't watch them, someday they might just hurt themselves.

Friday, January 07, 2005

From the land of salmon, fishy terra

Dave Neiwert's Orcinus is back from a short hiatus and exploring how the NeoTheoCons are using hate to boost their ratings and drive the nation off an ideological cliff.

We aren't exactly in the same shape as Germany was in the 1930s. But there's a whole movement to make us a lot like America was back then. When the New Deal gets completely canned, will Bu$hCo try to avoid Hoovervilles by emulating McKinley ?

Will the "anti-Bush anti-religion" voices , those who actually want to point out that people live in a real world be shouted down? Accused of treason ?

It happens every day.

The more we try to educate about, for example, the reality of evolution , the more we're accused of hating religion.

So I'm anti-Bu$hCo. So I'm going to oppose any religion- or political party- that tries to eliminate the presentation of facts in a public forum. If you think I'm the traitor for thinking this way- well, I think you should go look in a mirror, and see who's being unreasonable- and more likely treasonable.




Thursday, January 06, 2005

Looking for that Lemony Fresh clean-up

Supplanter cites some numbers, first:

a brief history of estimates of the size of the insurgency:

Summer 2003 - There's no insurgency! Just some bandits.
Winter 2004 - A few hundred to a couple thousand dead-enders.
Summer 2004 - As many as 5,000.
Fall 2004 - Up to 20,000.
Winter 2005 - About 40,000 dedicated, up to 160,000 kibitzers.
Summer 2005 - ?

All this time we've been assured that our kill ratios are splendid, that the insurgents lose every single encounter and so on. Meanwhile the top US estimate (the 20,000) quadrupled this year. Our intelligence has either sucked all along and the insurgency has always been much bigger than the Pentagon and NRO have imagined, or the insurgency has mushroomed despite all the Good News You Never Hear About and our unbroken string of military successes (Samarra, Fallujah, Najaf, Samarra, Najaf, Fallujah, Samarra . . . ).

Either way, it's hard to figure out how loudly I'd have to cheer to make the matter go away.


And then The Poor Man says it right:

Appreciate this. Understand that the people killing us in Iraq aren't motivated by Gore Vidal or inspired by Susan Sontag or organized by Michael Moore or in cahoots in any way with any of the right's celebrity piƱatas - not literally, not metaphorically, not if you look at it in a certain way, not to any infinitesimal degree, not in any sense, not in any way at all. They do not lead a clandestine international conspiracy of Evil which has corrupted everything in every foreign country plus everything in America not owned by loyal Bush Republican apparatchiks; nor are they members of such a conspiracy; nor does a conspiracy remotely matching that description exist. To think otherwise is, literally and to a very great degree, insanity. It is insane.
...
And, before you ask: no, I have no clue about how we can improve things in Iraq. I don’t have a single idea for how we can un-shit the bed, and I don’t hold out much hope that this whole bed-shitting episode is ever going to be brought to a lemony-fresh conclusion. I do, however, know who shit the bed, and have some sense of how frequently he shits there. Let’s stop shitting for a start.


But what to do about the mess in the bed?

First of all, we should realize it's not our bed and the people who own the bed want us to get the hell out.

So, first: get out of Iraq.

Then, second: reparations for the damage we've done, the way the people that live in Iraq want and need.

Finally, third: the people who have done the most shitting in the bed have effectively raped the people to whom the bed belongs. That makes them criminals, and the lot of them should be prosecuted to the full extent of international law.

Hear that, redruMsfeld? Big Time Dick? Mr. pWreznit?

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Stopping the rush

What Krugman says here .

Why he says it here . Warning: a .cgi file written by a Princeton economist, Dr. Krugman himself. You have to download it and read it with an Acrobat reader- a free application you can get from the site.

Read it if you haven't already, for goodies like:

There are three main points of confusion in the Social Security debate (confusion
that is deliberately created, for the most part, but never mind that for now). These
are:
• The meaning of the trust fund: in order to create a sense of crisis, proponents of privatization consider the trust fund either real or fictional, depending on what is convenient
• The rate of return that can be expected on private accounts: privatizers claim that there is a huge free lunch from the creation of these accounts, a free lunch that is based on very dubious claims about future stock returns
• How to think about implicit liabilities in the far future: privatizers brush aside the huge negative fiscal consequences of their plans in the short run, claiming that reductions in promised payments many decades in the future are an adequate offset.


The details are in pretty much non technical language, too.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

inCreditability

Just the list of some of Bu$hCo's Patriots - and coincidently, patrons- the top 10 war profiteers of 2004!

Just like members of the Carlyle Group to keep it in the family.

With a tip of the cyberspace hat to Truthout for the source.

It doesn't add up... but it hasn't since Y2K.

So, exit polls in the Ukraine were meaningful- but not here .

What happens when a tree falls in the forest- but "balance" requires nobody reports it?

This week, Michigan's Representative Conyers plans on objecting to Congress about Ohio's $election, but you won't hear about it on CNN, either.

Monday, January 03, 2005

Act

When the Wave shows itself
On the horizon
You only have moments:

Climb a tree
Run screaming for higher ground
Or swim to sea to greet it.