Friday, June 15, 2018

North Korea wise not to make Iraq, Iran, Libya mistake

We should all push back against endless US demonization, fear mongering and lying about the North Korea threat. We've been trying to unify Korea under the Western model since we created the artificial split of Korea at the 38th parallel in August, 1945, to thwart communist influence over Korean unification. Doing so meant condemning untold thousands to imprisonment, torture and death under the brutal US puppet leader Syngman Rhee in the US controlled South. Both North and South lusted for war to reunify Korea. Our preventing that inevitability sentenced several million Koreans to death, mostly at our our hands, dropping more bombs on North Korea than we dropped on Japan in WWII (635,000 tons v. 500,000 tons). We were never serious about keeping Korea nuclear free; our goal has always been regime change in the North. To counter that likelihood, conclusively proven by our betrayal of Iraq, Iran and Libya who did end their nuclear programs, the North's only trump card glows nuclear. Denuclearization only applies to countries we can't control. A nation planning a trillion dollar upgrade to its 6,500 nukes has zero credibility to pontificate to targets of US regime change policy.
North Korea will never and shouldn't give up its measly 15 nukes till the US makes it safe from regime change. That requires more than a temporary halt to provocative war games with the South. It requires ending sanctions, removing our soldiers from the Korean peninsula and pledging through the UN not to attack, something lusted for by US warmongers like National Security Adviser John Bolton and chief Senate war hawk Lindsay Graham, among others. If Uncle Sam wants to see the biggest threat to world peace...he merely needs to look in the mirror.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Yemen in the time of Cholera - Part V

In the Saudi's war on Yemen, blockade and famine are fine with their chief enablers, the United States of America. The deaths of over 15,000 Yemenis and a million plus suffering cholera makes no dent on the American conscience. We may be the land of the free and the home of the brave, but with our military and moral support, we're ensuring that Yemen remains the land of cholera and the home of the starving. The grotesque truth about this American aided proxy war against Iran is that Saudi Arabia and its Sunni allies can't defeat the Shi'ite Houthis militarily. They've gone to Plan B....starving the Houthis to death. They can do that because Yemen is dependent on imports for 90% of its food supply. Worse, they can do that because we aid and abet their ongoing genocide of the hapless Yemen people. Next time you gorge on the most plentiful food supply in the world, give a thought to that Yemenite baby you're helping lead to starvation and cholera.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Blago symptomatic of incarceration crazed US justice system

The United States is incarceration crazy, containing 4.4% of the world's population, but housing 22% of the world's prisoners. We have the highest incarceration rate at 716 per 100,000 and the highest percentage of convicted criminals who are jailed. At about $35,000 per inmate, total annual cost exceeds $80 billion.

It hasn't always been this way. Beginning under Nixon in 70's and Reagan in the 80's, the US became incarceration obsessed. Nixon, through aide John Halderman, admitted he used draconian drug violation sentencing to jail minorities and leftists in massive numbers for political gain. Reagan followed suit, resulting in a seven fold increase in state prisoners since then.

Nearly fifty years on, jailing non-violent, non habitual criminals is still the knee jerk response to criminal conviction. Many thousands languish behind bars for trivial drug possession, inability to make bail, trumped up or wrongful convictions among a host of excuses for needless incarceration. Draconian minimum sentencing and life without parole are adding to the staggering prison population.

That brings us to former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, sentenced to 14 years in federal prison for essentially cynical governance and thumbing his nose at the political power structure. Query a hundred citizens and nearly all will glaze over in cluelessness of his wrongdoing. Blago didn't make a dime from his political shenanigans and did infinitely less damage to the needy of Illinois than the current governor who legally withheld a budget for three years, causing severe economic hardship that will take years to redress, if ever. Sadly, pols and pundits push back on calls to release a harmless fool based mainly on his refusal to admit guilt and show remorse. That's simply cutting off one's economic nose to spite one's fiscal face. If Blago must remain inmate number 2,300,000 in the world's largest people cage, those folks looking for remorse should cough up the 35 grand to cage Blago for another year.