well that’s a real quaint way to put an admission that the government has committed war crimes … but don’t go expecting Obama to hold any current or former government officials accountable for said torture … one of his first acts upon taking office in 2008 was to grant blanket immunity to the Bush administration for such crimes …
i don’t know what’s worse, denying that the government tortures, or acknowledging the fact yet refusing to actually hold anyone accountable for it …
The United States tortured al Qaeda detainees captured after the Sept. 11,2001 attacks, President Obama acknowledged Friday, in some of his most expansive comments to date about a controversial set of CIA practices that he banned after taking office.
""We tortured some folks," Obama said at a televised news conference at the White House. "We did some things that were contrary to our values."
Addressing the impending release of a Senate report that criticizes CIA treatment of detainees, Obama said he believed the mistreatment happened because of the pressure national security officials felt to forestall another attack. He said Americans should not be too “sanctimonious” about passing judgment through the lens of a seemingly safer present day.
Just had to sit through a mandatory 2-hour meeting at the health clinic where I work to train us on how to use “Language of Caring” when talking to patients. The takeaway: When a patient is upset that they are only allowed a limited number of visits with a therapist, or that the services are too expensive, we are supposed to very politely and with undivided attention inform them that they need to just deal with it.
I’m sorry, but that’s not caring for the patient, that’s caring for the image and brand of the corporation that runs our clinic! So please, don’t lecture the workers that it is WE who demonstrate insufficient caring for our customers, i mean, patients.
On “democracy” and “communism” in the U.S. and former U.S.S.R.
I refuse to refer to the former USSR or China as “communist” without the qualifying quotation marks, just as vehemently as I refuse to refer to the U.S. as “democratic” without the same. Otherwise, both of those precious words are rendered completely meaningless.
‘The fact that the United States is threatening to strike now has nothing to do with the welfare of Syrians, and everything to do with the United States maintaining its own “credibility,” its position as a hegemonic power.” ‘
See this right here is what pisses me off to no end. Certainly, China is guilty of human rights violations; but here is a headline you will never see: “US official: Human rights deteriorate in U.S.”
Precisely at that moment when the US is experiencing the legal lynching of Black youth by vigilantes and cops; being exposed as operating a literal Big Brother spying apparatus that monitors nearly ever move of the citizenry; locking up whistle-blowers who expose war crimes; declaring war on the very right of workers to form labor unions; and twiddling its thumbs as women in the U.S. face epidemic levels of sexual assault, domestic violence, and reproductive restrictions …. it takes a lot of gall for that government to not say a single solitary word about “human rights” domestically, yet issue a press release stating the following:
“The United States is deeply concerned about what it sees as a deteriorating human rights situation in China, with relatives of activists increasingly being harassed and policies in ethnic areas becoming more repressive, a senior U.S. diplomat said Friday.”
That could literally describe conditions in the U.S. to a tee. In the wake of Occupy when nearly 10,000 activists have been arrested and even more harassed. When Muslims and Arabs get visited and harassed by the FBI as a matter of course. When people living in “ethnic areas” within the U.S. face unprecedented levels of deportation (if they are undocumented), or crushing poverty and violence (if they are Black).
When all of this is happening and your government refuses to talk about anything other than the human rights violations of OTHER countries … you know you have a government that does not in the least represent the interests of the vast majority of humans comprising the population, but rather the narrow group which comprises the ruling class; which runs and controls the country; and whose only concern is scoring points internationally against its peer national competitors, viz., emerging markets and geopolitical arenas in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.
BEIJING (AP) The United States is deeply concerned about what it sees as a deteriorating human rights situation in China, with relatives of activists increasingly being harassed and policies in ethnic areas becoming more repressive, a senior U.S. diplomat said Friday.
Tavis Smiley Disarms Bill O’Reilly With Suggestion To Arm Every Black Person
"PBS host Tavis Smiley joined Bill O’Reilly to react to O’Reilly’s assertions about the lack of media coverage over black-on-black crime in the United States. Smiley told O’Reilly that institutionally there is a contempt for black men in the United States that has to be addressed. O’Reilly pushed back, while Smiley brought up gun laws and suggested that every black person in the United States should have a gun just to see how the NRA responds."
Tavis killed it. I love to see O’Reilly get the smack-down.
Though I think it’s worth mentioning that O’Reilly’s line that “the only problem Black people in America have is themselves,” could have unfortunately come straight out of an Obama speech, like when he spoke at Morehouse and said that ” … too many young men in our community continue to make bad choices. Growing up, I made quite a few myself. Sometimes I wrote off my own failings as just another example of the world trying to keep a black man down. I had a tendency sometimes to make excuses for me not doing the right thing. But one of the things that all of you have learned over the last four years, is there’s no longer any room for excuses.”
Or when he spoke in Ghana in 2009 and said, “I think part of what’s hampered advancement in Africa is that for many years we’ve made excuses about corruption or poor governance, that this was somehow the consequence of neo-colonialism, or the West has been oppressive, or racism – I’m not a big – I’m not a believer in excuses.”
Guns and fetuses have more rights than women in texas.
AUSTIN - At the bag check at the Texas Capitol on Friday, state troopers confiscated tampons, but allowed concealed weapons into the Senate chamber, thrusting Texas’ abortion debate once more into the social media stratosphere and all but guaranteeing the state airtime on late night comedy shows. Texas Department of Public Safety officials said they ordered the bags checked before anyone could enter the gallery after being told that demonstrators were planning to throw objects on the Senate floor during Friday’s hours-long debate. Abortion rights supporters and a state lawmaker were skeptical, calling it an attempt to bolster Republican credibility during a contentious debate that has drawn national attention.
Or maybe it was because they were also bringing jars of shit and piss to throw at legislators? And also, Tampons is a pretty generic term. If these people were willing to throw excrement at the politicians, who says that those tampons weren’t used?
Wow. that awkward moment when self-described “libertarian” supports the state intervening to bar women from bringing tampons into the Texas Capitol, not to mention barring women from getting abortions. so much for limited government …
This is rich. Mayor 1%, Michael Bloomberg, accuses the NYTimes, the ACLU, and the Center for Constitutional Rights, for failing to share his deep concern for the well-being of minority citizens of NYC. He accuses all of the above of being racist because they have criticized the NYPD’s “Stop and Frisk” program. Meanwhile, he claims to be the only one who cares when a minority youth is murdered in the streets of NY.
He may actually be right about the NYTimes, but this is a serious case of the the pot & the kettle.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg today accused the New York Times and civil-liberties activists of a form of racial bias, for focusing criticism on the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk program instead of on shooting victims, who are predominantly black and Latino.
As a friend writes: “Because the white supremacist who killed 6 Sikhs in their temple last year, and the murderer of Dr. George Tiller aren’t terrorists. I guess for the Times it only counts if brown people are doing the killing.”
Of course, the irony is that the same US politicians and corporations that wax indignant on the topic of China’s totalitarianism are also the same people fostering and profiting from that totalitarianism.
We all know that companies like Apple are exploiting millions of dollars out of underpaid Chinese laborers who are bereft of trade union and/or political rights.
But even people like Mitt Romney are in on the hypocritical jig. Bain Capital, the financial firm founded by Romney, is single-handdly advancing a multi-billion dollar Chinese project to blanket the country in security cameras. The effect, of course, will be to strengthen the hold of those very same totalitarian state officials over the people of China.
The media have focused on the case of Chen Guangcheng, but dissent in China is much broader and driven by many factors, writes David Whitehouse.
This, then, is why the Democrats are not really a “lesser evil.” In fact, Democrats are often able to get a way with more horrible policies than Republicans because so many liberals and progressives who would otherwise be shouting from the rooftops about some terrible thing being done if it were a Republican, all of a sudden grow quiet about — or worse, even justify — that same terrible thing when it’s a Democrat doing it.
Whether it’s the mass slaughter of innocent civilians and children in Afghanistan and Pakistan through increased drone strikes; keeping open Guantanamo Bay; authorizing the right of the President to indefinitely detain American citizens without trial; or any other of the many Bush-esque things Obama has done, many liberals have proven themselves to now be some of the greatest apologists for precisely those actions they previously fumed over when Bush was Chief Executive.
During the Bush years, Guantanamo was the core symbol of right-wing radicalism and what was back then referred to as the “assault on American values and the shredding of our Constitution”: so much so then when Barack Obama ran for President, he featured these issues not as a secondary but as a central plank in his campaign. But now that there is a Democrat in office presiding over Guantanamo and these other polices — rather than a big, bad, scary Republican — all of that has changed, as a new Washington Post/ABC News poll today demonstrates:
The survey shows that 70 percent of respondents approve of Obama’s decision to keep open the prison at Guantanamo Bay… . The poll shows that 53 percent of self-identified liberal Democrats — and 67 percent of moderate or conservative Democrats — support keeping Guantanamo Bay open.
… Fully 77 percent of liberal Democrats endorse the use of drones, meaning that Obama is unlikely to suffer any political consequences as a result of his policy in this election year.
Depressingly, Democrats approve of the drone strikes on American citizens by 58-33, and even liberals approve of them, 55-35.
It’s hard to imagine that Dems and liberals would approve of such policies in quite these numbers if they had been authored by George W. Bush.