August 5, 2005

The Hiroshima Cover-Up
by Amy Goodman and David Goodman

╩ A story that the U.S. government hoped would never see the light of day finally has been published, 60 years after it was spiked by military censors. The discovery of reporter George Weller's firsthand account of conditions in post-nuclear Nagasaki sheds light on one of the great journalistic betrayals of the last century: the cover-up of the effects of the atomic bombing on Japan.

╩ On Aug. 6, 1945, the U.S. dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima; three days later, Nagasaki was hit. Gen. Douglas MacArthur promptly declared southern Japan off-limits, barring the news media. More than 200,000 people died in the atomic bombings of the cities, but no Western journalist witnessed the aftermath and told the story. Instead, the world's media obediently crowded onto the battleship USS Missouri off the coast of Japan to cover the Japanese surrender.

╩ A month after the bombings, two reporters defied General MacArthur and struck out on their own. Mr. Weller, of the Chicago Daily News, took row boats and trains to reach devastated Nagasaki. Independent journalist Wilfred Burchett rode a train for 30 hours and walked into the charred remains of Hiroshima.

Both men encountered nightmare worlds. more...

August 4, 2005

The Politics of Weather Your local weatherman has never been much of a political lightning rod. But these days -- with strong╩hurricanes striking the Atlantic seaboard earlier than at any time since records were first collected in 1851, and officials in the National Weather Service estimating that more than 200 heat records have been broken in the United States in the past two weeks alone -- the 10 o'clock forecast is╩turning into a nightly reminder of the heavy cost of letting polluting corporate special interests write our energy and environmental laws. more...

August 3, 2005

Support the Troops: Especially When They Come Back with Substance Abuse Problems
by Tony Newman ╩

"...I have been thinking about our current war in Iraq and wondering what the impact will be on the men and women fighting there. I get a shiver down my spine when I imagine what it would be like for me to leave my fiancÄe and family, depart the city I love and go fight in Iraq! It is horrifying to think of shooting at other human beings, seeing families getting blown up in cars and houses, feeling bullets whiz by me, seeing explosives take off the leg or arm of a close buddy. I couldnÔt do it." more...

August 2, 2005

War on Terror, Rest in Peace
By George Lakoff, AlterNet

The "War on Terror" is no more. It has been replaced by the "global struggle against violent extremism."

The phrase "War on Terror" was chosen with care. "War" is a crucial term. It evokes a war frame, and with it, the idea that the nation is under military attack -- an attack that can only be defended militarily, by use of armies, planes, bombs, and so on. The war frame includes special war powers for the president, who becomes commander in chief. It evokes unquestioned patriotism, and the idea that lack of support for the war effort is treasonous. It forces Congress to give unlimited powers to the President, lest detractors be called unpatriotic. And the war frame includes an end to the war -- winning the war, mission accomplished! more...

August 1, 2005

Ann Coulter's Beauty Secret

CONSERVATIVE VIRGINS DONATE BLOOD FOR COULTERÔS BATH
by Scott C.,╩World O'Crap's Children of the Night Correspondent╩

╩ ╩╩╩╩ When best-selling author Ann Coulter arrived at Charles Coughlin College in Lynchville, Illinois, Ceci Lawrence was shocked."╩ She looked so different from her photos," the 22-year old co-ed marveled."╩ She had these long, bony fingers, and her skin was all stretched and thin like rice paper, and I remember thinking during her speech: she looks like a talking kite."╩ It was then that Ceci and several of her sorority sisters resolved to do something for their distinguished visitor.

"We decided to have a blood drive," Ceci said, "So that Ann could renew the unholy forces which animate her flesh by bathing in the blood of the innocent.╩ more...

July 31, 2005

Terror Attacks are Response to Military Actions
by Linda McQuaig ╩

In the official, mainstream view of terrorism ¸ the view trumpeted by western governments, think tanks and media commentators ¸ terrorists are freedom-loathing zealots with an irrational hatred of our western lifestyle and culture.

But another view, polls suggest, is gaining ground with the public: Terrorism is actually a response to military interventions perpetrated by western governments.

**********

From The Record, a New Jersey paper, comes this editorial on Bush's "snubbing the Senate" if he recess appoints John Bolton:

HE couldn't do it the right way, so President Bush is apparently about to make John Bolton ambassador to the United Nations the wrong way - in what's known as a recess appointment.

It's a sign of defeat, since Mr. Bush couldn't get his choice confirmed, even by a Republican-controlled Senate.

July 30, 2005

We're back from the midwest. Barbara and I had a combination trip, visiting family and friends, hiking and touring, as well as taking in some culture. All in all, a good vacation.

**********

Action Alert

A New Blacklist for "Excuse Makers"
Those who think Iraq War sparks terror are "despicable," says Friedman

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has urged the U.S. government to create blacklists of condemned political speech--not only by those who advocate violence, but also by those who believe that U.S. government actions may encourage violent reprisals. The latter group, which Friedman called "just one notch less despicable than the terrorists," includes a majority of Americans, according to recent polls.

Friedman's July 22 column proposed that the State Department, in order to "shine a spotlight on hate speech wherever it appears," create a quarterly "War of Ideas Report, which would focus on those religious leaders and writers who are inciting violence against others." But Friedman said the governmental speech monitoring should go beyond those who actually advocate violence, and also include what former State Department spokesperson Jamie Rubin calls "excuse makers."

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No War in Iraq march.

San Francisco, Ca., January 18, 2003
San Francisco, Ca., February 16, 2003

Klezmatics

Klezmatics concert photos. (These are uncorrected straight out out of the camera)

On April 3, 2005, Barbara and I went to see the Klezmatics, with guest Joshua Nelson, Jewish gospel singer. To quote the concert program, "Their soul-stirring Jewish roots music recreates klezmer in arrangements and compostions that combine Jewish identity and mysticism with a contemporary zeitgeist and a postmodern aesthetic. Since their founding in New York City's East Village in 1986, the Klezmatics have celebrated the ecstatic nature of Yiddish music with works by turn wild, spiritual, provocative, reflective and danceable." The concert was phenomenal.

**********

Campus Bay

On April 28, 2005, More than 50 people representing many officials, community groups, and other concerned citizens gathered at the Campus Bay site to demand strict oversight of health and safety standards designed to protect the community during and after cleanup of these former industrial sites. Two months have gone by since the Richmond City Council asked the state to authorize the Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) to take the lead on environmental cleanup for the entire Stauffer Chemical / Zeneca / Campus Bay (called Campus Bay in short) site. Meanwhile, DTSC does have oversight on a portion of the site and cleanup will continue before development plans are approved.

The main health concerns include:
That the soil is so toxic that future residents would be exposed in the long term with unknown health effects due to gases from volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and direct exposure to toxic soils. They would almost certainly not be informed about the site history or any potential health threats. The developers idea of mitigation, by the way, includes fans inside the high rises to prevent buildup of VOCs where residents live (!!!!!).

Additional concerns:
Many organizations have additional concerns including the visual impact of the high rises on adjacent neighorhoods, visual impact on the coastal zone, proper clean up and restoration of the site in general and the marsh in particular which is critical habitat for many species including the endangered Clapper Rail etc.

A few additional Photos (Most of these photos are not edited or corrected in Photoshop).

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This site consists of original photographs and composites by Fletcher Oakes, unless otherwise credited.


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