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Have They No Shame? July 17, 2014

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  • And so, let me echo the attorney Joseph N. Welsh, in his famous rebuke of Sen. Joe McCarthy: "Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"
  • The Barbarians Inside the Gate
  • Part 1: Wingnuts’ anti-child disgrace: From Murrieta to Oracle, America’s worst at it again
  • Part 2: Michelle Bachmann Just Compared Child Immigrants to Rapists


Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Part 1: Wingnuts’ anti-child disgrace: From Murrieta to Oracle, America’s worst at it again

The GOP sheriff accused of threatening an ex with deportation foments protest -- to scare away immigrant children

Joan Walsh, Salon

/immigration_protest.jpgDemonstrators picket against the possible arrivals of undocumented migrants who may be processed at the Murrieta Border Patrol Station in Murrieta, California July 1, 2014. (Credit: Reuters/Sam Hodgson)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014 | Waving yellow Gadsden flags and looking like refugees from Cliven Bundy’s Nevada ranch, dozens of immigration opponents have amassed on a local road in Oracle, Arizona, to block the expected transfer of 40 undocumented children from Central America to a nearby juvenile detention facility. So far the group, which includes members of the “patriot”/wingnut Arizona State Militia, has only blocked a bus carrying kids from a local YMCA. Like their friends in Murrieta, California, the Oracle heroes think the proper way to protest U.S. immigration policy is to threaten young children.

Their leader, Robert Skiba, previewed his plans to Breitbart News on Sunday. “We’ve got to wake people in America up,” the 85-year-old veteran declared. “This is our country. We’re just average people. [But] we’re not going to let them shove this down our throats … I’m used to controversy of all kinds, and people need leadership, and I’m going to provide them with leadership.”

Joan Walsh is Salon's editor at large and the author of "What's the Matter With White People: Finding Our Way in the Next America."

Full story ... 



 

Part 2: Michelle Bachmann Just Compared Child Immigrants to Rapists

Outgoing Minnesota Republican Rep. and Tea-Party nutjob Michele Bachmann (R-MN) left viewers of a CNN debate in stunned silence on Tuesday, after referring to child immigrants as “invaders” and linking them to rape.

Kerry-Anne Mendoza, Addicting Info

July 16, 2014 | “Foreign nationals that have come into the United States are between 300- to 500,000,” Bachmann told an incredulous Crossfire co-host Van Jones. “My heart is broken for a female college student in Minnesota who was raped, murdered and mutilated by a foreign national who came into our country. We had a school bus full of kids in Minnesota — four children were killed on that school bus because an illegal alien driving a van went into that schoolbus.”

Host Van Jones picks Bachmann up on her comments immediately:

“There are lines that can’t be crossed here,” Jones responded. “I’m sorry, congresswoman. Are you gonna scapegoat children for the crime of this despicable person?”

Kerry-Anne Mendoza is a writer and activist. After a career as a management consultant holding senior positions in Banking, Health and Local Government - she gave it all up to live in a tent at Occupy London and has been writing ever since. She is based in the UK.

Full story … 

Kneeling in Fenway Park to the Gods of War

  • The use of the Morse jet to carry out extraordinary rendition exposes the dark side of professional sports, how it is used by oligarchs and the military to manipulate and control us. 
  • The Myth of America’s Global Peacekeeping Past

Chris Hedges, Truthdig

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AP110530030227.jpg Boston Red Sox fans lean over "the Green Monster" to touch an American flag covering the wall during pregame ceremonies on Memorial Day in 2011. Photo by Winslow Townson

Jul 7, 2014 | On Saturday I went to one of the massive temples across the country where we celebrate our state religion. The temple I visited was Boston’s Fenway Park. I was inspired to go by reading Andrew Bacevich’s thoughtful book “Breach of Trust: How Americans Failed Their Soldiers and Their Country,” which opens with a scene at Fenway from July 4, 2011. The Fourth of July worship service that I attended last week—a game between the Red Sox and the Baltimore Orioles—was a day late because of a rescheduling caused by Tropical Storm Arthur. When the crowd sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” a gargantuan American flag descended to cover “the Green Monster,” the 37-foot, 2-inch-high wall in left field. Patriotic music blasted from loudspeakers. Col. Lester A. Weilacher, commander of the 66th Air Base Group at Massachusetts’ Hanscom Air Force Base, wearing a light blue short-sleeved Air Force shirt and dark blue pants, threw the ceremonial first pitch. A line of Air Force personnel stood along the left field wall. The fighter jets—our angels of death—that usually roar over the stadium on the Fourth were absent. But the face of Fernard Frechette, a 93-year-old World War II veteran who was attending, appeared on the 38-by-100-foot Jumbotron above the center-field seats as part of Fenway’s “Hats Off to Heroes” program, which honors military veterans or active-duty members at every game. The crowd stood and applauded. Army National Guard Sgt. Ben Arnold had been honored at the previous game, on Wednesday. Arnold said his favorite Red Sox player was Mike Napoli. Arnold, who fought in Afghanistan, makes about $27,000 a year. Napoli makes $16 million. The owners of the Red Sox clear about $60 million annually. God bless America.

The religious reverie—repeated in sports arenas throughout the United States—is used to justify our bloated war budget and endless wars. Schools and libraries are closing. Unemployment and underemployment are chronic. Our infrastructure is broken and decrepit. And we will have paid a crippling $4 trillion for the useless and futile wars we waged over the last 13 years in the Middle East. But the military remains as unassailable as Jesus, or, among those who have season tickets at Fenway Park, the Red Sox. The military is the repository of our honor and patriotism. No public official dares criticize the armed forces or challenge their divine right to more than half of all the nation’s discretionary spending. And although we may be distrustful of government, the military—in the twisted logic of the American mind—is somehow separate.

Chris Hedges, a weekly columnist for Truthdig, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who has reported from more than 50 countries, specializing in American politics and society.

Full story … 

 

Related:

The Myth of America’s Global Peacekeeping Past, Leon Hadar, The American Conservative

There is something morally appalling in Kagan, The Economist, and other cheerleaders for the botched wars in the Greater Middle East arguing once again that only the full application of American military power will deter aggression and build the foundations for stability.

 

 

We, the people are violent and filled with rage: A nation spinning apart on its Independence Day

  • School shootings, hatred, capitalism run amok: This 4th of July, we are in the midst of a tragic public derangement.
  • Howard Zinn’s July 4 Wisdom: Put Away Your Flags

Jim Sleeper, Salon

american_murderers.jpg Friday, Jul 4, 2014 | Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Concord Hymn,” 1837

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,

Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,

Here once the embattled farmers stood

And fired the shot heard ’round the world.

For centuries most Americans have believed that “the shot heard ’round the world” in 1775 from Concord, Massachusetts, heralded the Enlightenment’s entry into history. Early observers of America such as G.W.F. Hegel, Edward Gibbon and Edmund Burke believed that, too. A new kind of republican citizen was rising, amid and against adherents of theocracy, divine-right monarchy, aristocracy and mercantilism. Republican citizens were quickening humanity’s stride toward horizons radiant with promises never before held and shared as widely as they were in America.

The creation of the United States really was a Novus ordo seclorum, a New Order of the Ages, a society’s first self-aware, if fumbling and compromised, effort to live by the liberal expectation that autonomous individuals could govern themselves together without having to impose religious doctrines or mystical narratives of tribal blood or soil. With barely a decorous nod to The Creator, the founders of the American republic conferred on one another the right to have rights, a distinguished group of them constituting the others as “We, the people.”

Jim Sleeper is the author of Liberal Racism (1997) and The Closest of Strangers: Liberalism and the Politics of Race in New York (1990)

Full story … 

Related:

Howard Zinn’s July 4 Wisdom: Put Away Your Flags, Howard Zinn, The Progressive

  • In a nation like ours -- huge, possessing thousands of weapons of mass destruction -- what might have been harmless pride becomes an arrogant nationalism dangerous to others and to ourselves. 
  • Trying to Feel Patriotic on the Fourth of July
  • Noam Chomsky | America's Real Foreign Policy

 

Celebrating Pops' birthday on the Fourth of July

We kicked this off last year, in July 4th Louis 'Pops' Armstrong birthday celebration, and I hope we can make it a tradition.

Denise Oliver Velez, Daily Kos

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Portrait.jpg?1372763698July 4, 2014 | Louis Armstrong, the world's best-known jazz musician, was born in New Orleans Louisiana, in 1901. He says he was born on July Fourth, and no matter what later historians say, I'm stickin' to the day Pops celebrated until he passed on July 6, in 1971.

So, like I do every year, I'm celebrating with Pops. I have the grill (and my laptop) out on the back porch, and the sound of a trumpet is blasting.  

Feeling good, and like Pop's said, "It's a wonderful world," in spite of all that confronts us.

Denise Oliver Velez: applied cultural anthropologist, writer and revolutionary -- is currently an adjunct Professor of Anthropology and Women's Studies at SUNY New Paltz.

Full story … 

Trying to Feel Patriotic on the Fourth of July

  • Anyone who honestly reads Howard Zinn, Martin Luther King, Noam Chomsky, and  Chris Hedges can’t help but become disillusioned with America’s history and the massive propaganda by which the vast majority of us Americans have been duped into sometimes very sincerely believing that the US is the new shining light of the world, working courageously and endlessly for justice and peace.
  • Howard Zinn’s July 4 Wisdom: Put Away Your Flags

Gary G. Kohls, Duty to Warn, Evergreene Digest

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unclesam.jpg July 1, 2014 | Since the assassinations of Jack Kennedy and Martin Luther King (and the Vietnam War that had much to do with both), it has been hard for historically-literate and open-minded Americans to generate much patriotic fervor on the Fourth of July. But they should have been skeptical long before those idealism-shattering events. My own seriously deficient high school education in world and American history has necessitated decades of catch-up reading and research in order to find the truth about the dark underbelly of America.

My high school textbooks totally ignored the real histories of the conquistadores, the genocide of Native Americans and their cultures, and the truth about the actual brutality of the enslavement of Black Africans. My history books glorified America’s wars, and never mentioned America’s use of propaganda or how it was involved in fascist movements world-wide. The cold realities of sexism, militarism, poverty, corporate abuse, the banking system, etc. were glossed over. Sadly, my relative ignorance about the (obviously censored out of our consciousness) painful and unwelcome truths about what really happened in history is probably the norm.

Gary G. Kohls is a retired physician who writes about issues of war, peace, justice, mental health and nonviolence and feels it is important to mix religion and non-partisan politics. 

Full story … 

 

Related:

Howard Zinn’s July 4 Wisdom: Put Away Your Flags, Howard Zinn, The Progressive

  • In a nation like ours -- huge, possessing thousands of weapons of mass destruction -- what might have been harmless pride becomes an arrogant nationalism dangerous to others and to ourselves. 
  • Trying to Feel Patriotic on the Fourth of July
  • Noam Chomsky | America's Real Foreign Policy

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