President Gas 2008

Saturday, 26 April 2008

a contemporary twist on a classic by the Psychedelic Furs;

I found it on Crooks and Liars

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Lives and Treasure

Thursday, 20 March 2008
pirate game

“No one would argue that this war has not come at a high cost in lives and treasure…”

PЯesident George W Bush, speaking yesterday about Iraq

Sorry – “treasure”?

I don’t know about everyone else, but I find that use of the word ‘treasure’ offensive. The war in Iraq is not a children’s game of pirates, and the taxpayers’ hard-earned money is not ‘treasure’.

But W is an asshole and John McCain is going to be even worse.


A vote for the Democrats is a vote for Al Qaeda

Saturday, 15 March 2008
mccain bush hug

Or, in other words, a vote for Obama is a vote for Osama.

Politicians have no shame. Or, in other words, McCain is a dick.

I saw this story on the dreaded Huffington Post: McCain: Al Qaeda May Intervene To Tip Election Towards Dems.

John McCain would have us believe that a vote for a Democrat is a vote for Al Qaeda. Therefore if you vote for a Democrat, you support terrorism. And if you support terrorism, you’re the same as a terrorist. So if you vote for a Democrat, you are a terrorist and you’d better have your overnight bag packed and ready by the front door so that when you’re renditioned you’ll at least have your toothbrush.

Or you can be a patriotic Amerikan and vote for McCain.


Update on Everything

Wednesday, 5 March 2008
Kafka Metamorphosis beetle

The Flat

The contract has been fixed to our satisfaction, our funds are almost consolidated, there is always champagne in the fridge, and we are signing next week.

Max’s Residency Permit

Martin was able to fix things on Monday with VZP so that I did not have to pay their stupid penalty (see post below). Then Katka went to their office to conclude my 2-year health insurance agreement. Martin took the health insurance agreement, my passport and a power of attorney so that he could go to the foreigner police for my visa the following morning.

This email was waiting for me when I arrived at work on Tuesday:

Hi Max,

It’s unbelievable but I don’t have your visa because that stupid woman at FP has completely changed her mind – she has made a copy of your insurance card and has said that everything was OK, but she has refused to give me visa based on the power of attorney (last week she said that you do not have to go there in person). I don’t understand that but it was impossible to persuade her on anything else today. This is unbelievable country… You (or secretary) will have to go there tomorrow in the morning and stand the queue for the number…

m.

I answered Martin straight away:

Martin

It’s not unbelievable. That’s normal. They talk out of their arses and then they talk out of the other side. FP, VZP… they should all be shot. I am trying to get in touch with my visa agent and hopefully she’ll be able to help me out tomorrow. Don’t worry about it, it’s not your fault.

You didn’t lose my passport, did you?

M

Martin hadn’t lost my passport and I was able to get in touch with Lenka within a few minutes. I went to the foreigner police in person this morning. Upon arriving back at my office, I sent this report to a few friends:

For anyone that has been concerned about my impending (and repeated) deportation…

I got my new visa this morning. The foreigner police wouldn’t give it to Martin yesterday with a power of attorney so I had to go myself today. I paid 800 Kč to get a number so that I wouldn’t have to wait (which could take either hours or days) and I was in and out of there in about 12 minutes with my shiny new visa.

On another note, I then took my passport to my embassy to get extra pages put in, which are necessary because EU countries have become a bit too stamp happy. It used to be that you went to the window, handed them your passport and asked for new pages, and they would do it immediately and hand your passport straight back. Not anymore. This time I had to fill in a form and leave my passport there. If I pass the security check, I’ll be able to pick up my fatter passport this afternoon and Abby V, I’ll see you in London tomorrow. If I don’t pass the security check, I guess that will mean rendition and waking up in Gitmo.

I went back to the embassy after lunch and they returned my passport to me with 24 lovely new blank pages. That should last me another two or three years.

But my passport is gone once again. I had to give it to the secretary that has my power-of-attorney for the Trade Licence Office. She’s on her way there now to show them my new visa so that they will renew my trade licence. Then someone will have to go to the commercial court to show them that my trade licence has been renewed so that can be registered in the Commercial Register.

And then I should be all set until I move into my new flat when I’ll have to send people running around to every possible administrative authority in the Czech Republic in order to change my address. What a country.


Blood on their hands

Saturday, 2 February 2008
blackwater nc

I asked a series of questions at Christmas lunch: Could I in good conscience go on a date with a man who owns a company that provides private security in Iraq? Has that man chosen to do a dirty job? Or is he merely filling a market niche that if left unfilled would be filled by someone else? And is the service he has chosen to provide inherently unethical or is that open to interpretation?

The man in question is not Erik Prince and the company of mercenaries is not Blackwater. If he were and it were, I never would have had to ask those questions.

make/shift sent me this article. It’s about activists who were arrested, tried, and convicted in secret for peacefully protesting the Blackwater massacre of civilians in Baghdad’s Nisour Square in September 2007.

On 20 October 2007, 50 protestors staged a “die-in” outside Blackwater’s private military base in North Carolina. Seven of the protestors were arrested and charged with criminal trespassing. Six of them were also charged with resisting arrest, and one also with injury to real property. The seven protestors were kept in jail for 5 days before being released pending trial.

Their trial was on 5 December. As the protestors’ intention had been to draw attention to Blackwater’s conduct and “war crimes”, which had all gone unpunished, they attempted to continue in that vein at their trial. But at the first convenient moment, that is as soon as the first defendant had been convicted, the judge effectively silenced the protestors by clearing the courtroom. The people the judge expelled included spectators, journalists, the families of the defendants, and defence witnesses. Those allowed to remain included sheriffs, government witnesses and a Blackwater official. The remaining six protestors were tried thus, in a secret closed courtroom without a single member of the press or, in fact, any independent witnesses. All were convicted.

We have traditions of activism, protest and non-violent civil disobedience in the US. We have the examples of the Boston Tea Party, Henry David Thoreau, Rosa Parks, and Martin Luther King, Jr. But what have we got in The New Amerika?

The convicted criminals appealed and the ACLU filed a complaint against the judge. Blackwater continues to operate with impunity.


Pakistan today, The Amerika tomorrow

Monday, 5 November 2007

police state

 

I am not saying that it is imminent, or indeed that it is going to happen at all. I am saying, however, that we need to be aware that it is possible. And, most importantly, that the legislation that would make martial law legal in The Amerika is already in place.

I wrote about Aaron Russo’s film, America: Freedom to Fascism, in August 2006. In that post, I included the film’s sample list of executive orders. As I trust no one, I had checked to make sure Russo wasn’t full of shit. I found that his list was correct – all of the executive orders are real.

President Bush has signed executive orders giving him sole authority to impose martial law and suspend habeas corpus. This gives him dictatorial power over the people…with no checks and balances.

All of the following orders were in place long before Bush took office.

Executive Order #11921 – provides that the President can declare a state of emergency that is not defined, and Congress cannot review the action for six months – signed by Gerald R. Ford, 11 June 1976.

Executive Order #10990 – allows the government to take over all modes of transportation – signed by John F. Kennedy, 2 February 1962.

Executive Order #10995 – allows the government to seize and control the communications media – signed by John F. Kennedy, 16 February 1962.

Executive Order #10997 – allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals – signed by John F. Kennedy, 16 February 1962.

Executive Order #10998 – allows the government to take over all food resources and farms – signed by John F. Kennedy, 16 February 1962.

Executive Order #11002 – Postmaster General to operate a national registration of all persons – signed by John F. Kennedy, 16 February 1962.

Executive Order #11000 – allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision – signed by John F. Kennedy, 16 February 1962.

The Huffington Post yesterday published a list of some of the rights that have been suspended in Pakistan:

 

  • Protection of life and liberty.
  • The right to free movement.
  • The right of detainees to be informed of their offence and given access to lawyers.
  • Protection of property rights.
  • The right to assemble in public.
  • The right to free speech.
  • Equal rights for all citizens before law and equal legal protection.
  • Media coverage of suicide bombings and militant activity is curtailed by new rules. Broadcasters also face a three-year jail term if they “ridicule” members of the government or armed forces.

 

 

 

 

 

I would like to review all of Bush’s executive orders to see exactly what powers he has already claimed, but he has signed literally hundreds and I already have a full-time job.

 

And in addition to the executive branch usurping powers, the legislative branch has happily handed additional powers to the president. As an example, Public Law 109-364, the “John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007” (HR 5122), which was signed into law on 17 October 2006. The Act gives the president the power to declare a public emergency and station troops anywhere in the Amerika and take control of state-based National Guard units without the consent of the governor or local authorities. Does anyone remember the Posse Comitatus Act?

 

And don’t forget another consequence of Pakistan’s state of emergency – the elections that were planned for January 2008 will be postponed until there is no longer a state of emergency. General Musharraf will therefore remain in power until further notice.

 

George W Bush – president for life. Has an interesting ring to it, doesn’t it?


Inevitable

Friday, 19 October 2007

military cemetery

 

I want to share Monkey’s reaction to my draft post of 5 days ago (no link – just see below).

 

Read your blog post re the draft and wanted to let you know that I support it, though with a very heavy heart.

It’s the only way to bring the reality of war home to the huddled masses of Walmart shoppers and Superbowlers, and the only way to force change.

The country has been led down the road of militarization since 1945 and I think the sheeple funding the machine deserve what they get. Harsh, I know.

They still support the war by buying Coke, Marlboro, GE, etc and don’t see the big picture and obviously never will until their lives are affected.

I fear the next 12 months.