The Talking Dog "Sure, the dog can talk…but does it say anything interesting?" He ain't The Man's best friend

Happy new year

It’s 2015 now. That’s the fifteenth different year in which I have posted something to this blog. A special thanks to those of you still reading… even occasionally… who aren’t some kind of bot. I know I don’t post as often as I once did… but… such is life on a blog that began when I was in my late 30’s… now, in my early 50’s… let’s just say I don’t feel compelled to post as much as I once did. The year 2014 had its difficulties, and a number of people I care about lost loved ones. Hopefully for...

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Happy Festivus

In an America where a long-awaited Senate report on torture draws out polling that shows that something like 59% of Americans don’t think torture is justified: they think it’s awesome… the stock market hits record highs… just as the labor force participation rate reaches its lowest point since the late 1970’s… before many women… or talking dogs… were even in the work force. As the price of oil crashes… it might take out one of the few “green chutes” of our post-Great Recession “economy”… fracking for oil… And while a few more prisoners have been released from GTMO… the official...

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Why can’t we all just get along?

You’ll all recall that as the late Rodney King’s plea for calm, in the midst of riots-in-his-name that broke out in Los Angeles after [White] police officers charged with savagely beating [Black] Mr. King– caught on a videotape– were, surprise, surprise, acquitted [by an all-White suburban jury.] Which is why it seems an appropriate tag-line for the present moment, of spontaneous (or are they?) street protests breaking out all over my city (and country) right now, in light of the most recent perceived outrage, that of the non-indictment of the police officer whose actions resulted in the death of Eric...

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Family reunion (after 9-11 changed everything)

Candace let me know that her client Abdul al-Ghizzawi has finally been reunited (after thirteen years) with his wife and daughter (the latter, whom he last saw as an infant) since American policy ripped them apart, and then arbitrarily kept him at Guantanamo Bay until 2010 (he was released then to the Republic of Georgia, and made his way home to post-Qaddaffi Libya last year). Interestingly, al-Ghizzawi notified Candace of the happy news (and Candace forwarded to me) two days ago– on my 52nd birthday; I accepted it as a birthday gift from providence, just as I once accepted a...

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Apocalypse begins at home

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and leads to a couple of bowling allies in Brooklyn, and is traversed by Uber cabs… so we learned from the cautionary tale of Dr. Craig Spencer, a self-described goofball who heroically treated ebola cases in Guinea, West Africa, as a physician with Doctors Without Brains Borders… decided that his “self-quarantine” was too restricting, so he “voluntarily” checked out of… his apartment, and hopped a couple of car services across the East River from Upper Manhattan (near his regular job at New York Presbyterian Hospital) to Williamsburg, Brooklyn… so he could...

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Winter is coming

For a rather grim math lesson about the ebola outbreak, this post from John Michael Greer will more than do the trick. To summarize, absent successful intervention, various factors that slow these things down some, dumb luck, etc., if the present reports of the ebola virus doubling in infections every three weeks or so are in fact accurate, and human transmission patterns proceed apace in our ever more “globalized” world… an outbreak like this, at that rate (with somewhere between 50-90% fatality rate of those contracting ebola)… would result in something like everyone on Earth being exposed by, say, end...

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Same old

It actually slipped my mind that, two days ago, this blog slipped through its thirteenth anniversary; I suppose I should give it a bar mitzvah, but then, just how old is it in [talking] dog years? Damned if I know. So many things seem so old and tired (besides my nearly fifty-two year old self). Anyway, we can start with this Atlantic observation (and of course, hit-piece) of Hillary Clinton (she hasn’t gone away either; btw she and I share a birthday). The piece notes Hillary’s campaign shtick (including her recent book) are all about playing it “safe,” and not...

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Depends on what the meaning of Is Is… er, ISIS

. Did the President’s Big Speech [TM] threatening to kick ass and take names re: “the Islamic State[TM]” bring back that awesome 9-11 spirit? Because Paranoia Is Patriotic [TM]. It’s That Day [TM] all over again. Just forty-one years ago on 11 September, a CIA-sponsored coup d’etat military junta that the United States was happy about toppled the democratically elected government of Chile and then murdered that nation’s rightful president Salvador Allende President Salvador Allende committed suicide. And, of course, it is just two years after Benghazi [TM]. In case you’re wondering just what these seemingly disparate (or not so...

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Rock [star] paper scissors

One wondering what would take the situation in Ukraine (now featuring a Russian aid convoy on its way to Eastern Ukraine which, as Brother Dmitry observes, will likely be delayed or outright barred from entry while the Ukrainians figure out how to shake it down) off of the front page, might think, “the situation in Gaza.” There, of course, a tentative cease-fire seems to be holding, as both sides may have achieved their respective political ends from pummeling Palestinian civilians (or in the case of Hamas, getting them pummeled), fulfilling Clausewitz’s famous axiom that war is just politics by other...

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