Saturday, August 30, 2008

this is what a police state looks like

Glenn Greenwald: Massive police raids on suspected protestors in Minneapolis

Protesters here in Minneapolis have been targeted by a series of highly intimidating, sweeping police raids across the city, involving teams of 25-30 officers in riot gear, with semi-automatic weapons drawn, entering homes of those suspected of planning protests, handcuffing and forcing them to lay on the floor, while law enforcement officers searched the homes, seizing computers, journals, and political pamphlets. Last night, members of the St. Paul police department and the Ramsey County sheriff's department handcuffed, photographed and detained dozens of people meeting at a public venue to plan a demonstration, charging them with no crime other than "fire code violations," and early this morning, the Sheriff's department sent teams of officers into at least four Minneapolis area homes where suspected protesters were staying.

Jane Hamsher and I were at two of those homes this morning -- one which had just been raided and one which was in the process of being raided. Each of the raided houses is known by neighbors as a "hippie house," where 5-10 college-aged individuals live in a communal setting, and everyone we spoke with said that there had never been any problems of any kind in those houses, that they were filled with "peaceful kids" who are politically active but entirely unthreatening and friendly. Posted below is the video of the scene, including various interviews, which convey a very clear sense of what is actually going on here.

In the house that had just been raided, those inside described how a team of roughly 25 officers had barged into their homes with masks and black swat gear, holding large semi-automatic rifles, and ordered them to lie on the floor, where they were handcuffed and ordered not to move. The officers refused to state why they were there and, until the very end, refused to show whether they had a search warrant. They were forced to remain on the floor for 45 minutes while the officers took away the laptops, computers, individual journals, and political materials kept in the house. One of the individuals renting the house, an 18-year-old woman, was extremely shaken as she and others described how the officers were deliberately making intimidating statements such as "Do you have Terminator ready?" as they lay on the floor in handcuffs. The 10 or so individuals in the house all said that though they found the experience very jarring, they still intended to protest against the GOP Convention, and several said that being subjected to raids of that sort made them more emboldened than ever to do so.

Lindsay Beyerstein: Inside an RNC Raid

Twin Cities Indymedia: More police raids on Saturday morning, More journalist detainments

The Minnesota Independent: Food Not Bombs house among Saturday raids

RNC Emergency Dispatch #1

saturday reads

Bush quietly seeks to make war powers permanent, by declaring indefinite state of war (The Raw Story)

As the nation focuses on Sen. John McCain's choice of running mate, President Bush has quietly moved to expand the reach of presidential power by ensuring that America remains in a state of permanent war.

Buried in a recent proposal by the Administration is a sentence that has received scant attention -- and was buried itself in the very newspaper that exposed it Saturday. It is an affirmation that the United States remains at war with al Qaeda, the Taliban and "associated organizations."

Part of a proposal for Guantanamo Bay legal detainees, the provision before Congress seeks to “acknowledge again and explicitly that this nation remains engaged in an armed conflict with Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and associated organizations, who have already proclaimed themselves at war with us and who are dedicated to the slaughter of Americans.”

FISA Court Denies Public Access To Spy Law Proceedings

Who could have anticipated? Blackwater on its way back to NOLA for Huricane Gustav.

Barack Obama's audience for his acceptance speech likely topped 40 million people, and the Democratic gathering that nominated him was a more popular television event than any other political convention in history.

Paul Krugman: Feeling No Pain

Dave Zirin: A People's Historian of Sports

Friday, August 29, 2008

friday random ten

Photo by Ryan McManus

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - Abattoir Blues / The Lyre of Orpheus
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus (2004)

My Bloody Valentine - You Made Me Realise
You Made Me Realise
My Bloody Valentine
You Made Me Realise EP (1988)

Love Is All - Busy Doing Nothing
Busy Doing Nothing
Love Is All
Busy Doing Nothing single (2006)

Stand Fast
C'est la mort
Unreleased (2005)

The Metasciences - Pencils Down
Brain Brigade
The Metasciences
Pencils Down (2005)

Broken Social Scene - Broken Social Scene
7/4 (Shoreline)
Broken Social Scene
s/t (2005)

Okkervil River - Overboard & Down
Westfall (live)
Okkervil River
Overboard & Down (2006)

The Marshmallow Coast - Seniors & Juniors
Bizzare Classical II
The Marshmallow Coast
Seniors & Juniors (1999)

The Fall - Call for Escape Route
No Bulbs
The Fall
Call for Escape Route (1984)

Kelly Willis - Kelly Willis
World Without You
Kelly Willis
s/t (1993)

Eight is enough

Obama accepts nomination

I believe in recycling, but that’s ridiculous

Al Gore

Thursday, August 28, 2008

thursday reads

More than a million people have been forced from their homes and 250,000 houses destroyed in one of the worst floods in northern India for decades, sparking accusations that the destruction was man-made.

Thirteen Nepali men were recruited and held against their will for thirteen months in a human trafficking scheme engineered and perpetrated by Halliburton and its Jordanian contractor, according to a lawsuit filed yesterday in California federal court.

The ACLU issued a stinging rebuke to the Denver Police Department Wednesday, alleging that the department may have violated laws and constitutional rights of protesters arrested outside the Democratic National Convention.

Police in Denver arrested an ABC News producer today as he and a camera crew were attempting to take pictures on a public sidewalk of Democratic senators and VIP donors leaving a private meeting at the Brown Palace Hotel.

David Neiwert - The Obama Plotters: The Republican Double Standard In Law Enforcement Made Manifest

“People the world over have always been more impressed by the power of our example than by the example of our power.”

Scott Horton interviews Luke Ryland on the A.Q. Kahn nuclear secrets peddling network.

Challenging New Iraq War Video Game: Mideast Meltdown

FCC Anounces 80 City 'We're Not Listening' Digital TV Tour

Bruce Dixon - Black Agenda Report

All most of us know about the transition to digital TV are two things. The first thing we know is that some people will need converter boxes on their old TVs to receive the new digital broadcasts. The second thing we know is that digital broadcast technology will enable high definition TV. As far as corporate broadcasters and the FCC are concerned, that's all we need to know, and those are the boundaries of legitimate public discourse.

What the FCC and broadcasters are actively concealing from the public is that digital broadcasting technology enables thousands of new digital TV channels on the public broadcast spectrum, all of which broadcasters have allocated to themselves without the inconvenient public scrutiny issuing thousands of new station licenses might have attracted. Thus minorities and women, local entrepreneurs, colleges and universities, community, civic and labor organizations and local governments who otherwise might acquire a portion of the new digital TV channels and used them to broadcast local news, arts, information and public service in hundreds of US markets have been frozen out of the chance to serve the public over the public's airwaves without even the bother of public explanation or debate.

Utterly captured by the private broadcasters it is supposed to police and regulate, the FCC has been tasked with selling this piece of grand theft digital as a public service, and farmed out the job to the notorious PR firm of Ketchum Communications.

The "We're Not Listening Tour" hits Austin, TX on September 18, 2008.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

wednesday reads

Whitewashing the bad econ news

Army opens prep school for dropouts to fill ranks

Tomgram: Nick Turse, The Future of Death at the Pentagon

Dennis Kucinich - "Wake Up America!"

Hillary: "No Way. No How. No McCain."

The 1934 George Bush - John McCain Tijuana Bible. (adults only)

IVAW: Bringing Baghdad to Denver Streets

Pam Spaulding takes a look at the upcoming program of the Republican National Connvention.

Bondage lovers are not 'sexually abnormal'.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

this is what a police state looks like

American News Project

A calm political protest quickly turned chaotic as anxious Denver police surrounded protestors peacefully marching toward the Democratic National Convention Center. After trapping the crowd between two buildings, hundreds of officers used pepper spray, batons and unwarranted aggression. After being surrounded for 20 minutes, two ANP producers managed to escape after recording the whole affair.

Lykke Li Widget

tuesday reads

The Colorado Independent: Four held in plot to ’shoot Obama from a high vantage point’

This is what a police state looks like.

Lindsey Beyerstein: A "Free Speech" Zone at the DNC

Billmon: The Bloody Shirt

Mike's Election Guide

Firedoglake: Party Guests Ashamed of their Blue Dog/AT&T Hosts At DNC

Monday, August 25, 2008

Faux News

Best Billboard Ever
Originally uploaded by DJBrianE