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On The New American Militarism - How Americans Are Seduced By War

The argument I make in my book is that what I describe as the new American militarism arises as an unintended consequence of the reaction to the Vietnam War and more broadly, to the sixties... If some people think that the sixties constituted a revolution, that revolution produced a counterrevolution, launched by a variety of groups that had one thing in common: they saw revival of American military power, institutions, and values as the antidote to everything that in their minds had gone wrong. None of these groups — the neoconservatives, large numbers of Protestant evangelicals, politicians like Ronald Reagan, the so-called defense intellectuals, and the officer corps — set out saying, “Militarism is a good idea.” But I argue that this is what we’ve ended up with: a sense of what military power can do, a sort of deference to the military, and an attribution of virtue to the men and women who serve in uniform. Together this constitutes such a pernicious and distorted attitude toward military affairs that it qualifies as militarism.
An interview with Andrew Bacevich, international relations professor and former Army colonel, and author of The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced by War--and here is a review. Recently by Bacevich: We Aren't Fighting to Win Anymore - U.S. troops in Iraq are only trying to buy time.
posted by y2karl on Feb 21, 2005 - 37 comments

Above and Beyond the Call of Duty

Above and Beyond the Call of Duty The St. Petersburg Times reported this week that Army Sgt. 1st Class Paul R. Smith, killed in action in Iraq on April 4, 2003, will be posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. Sgt. Smith had always said he would give "all that I am to make sure all my boys make it home." The Medal of Honor is awarded "for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty." Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham, killed in Iraq in April 2004 after he threw himself on top of a grenade to protect his fellow Marines, has been nominated for the Medal of Honor.
posted by mlis on Feb 5, 2005 - 6 comments

Judge backs Guantanamo challenge

Judge backs Guantanamo challenge A US judge has ruled that special military tribunals being used to try hundreds of detainees at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba are illegal.
posted by borq on Jan 31, 2005 - 32 comments

Paternalism gone mad?

US ISP Verizon decided late last year to block any email sent from outside the US. I thought the bounces I was getting from my Verizon contacts were glitches until I googled and found this.

The arrogance of Verizon is astonishing: "If it's really important you might want to make a phone call".
posted by essexjan on Jan 26, 2005 - 44 comments

US gives up search for Iraq WMD

It's official: US gives up search for Iraq WMD.
posted by airguitar on Jan 12, 2005 - 231 comments

Party like it's 1892

Party like it's 1892! "Executive power and patronage have been used to corrupt our legislatures and defeat the will of the people, and plutocracy has thereby been enthroned upon the ruins of democracy."* In the late 1800s, the Populist Party, or People's Party, formed to merge the Farmers Alliance message of economic empowerment for growers with the Knights of Labor's movement to check the growing power and corrupt practices of big business (along with the Greenbacks Party critiques of monetary policy). With a strong base in the midwest and south, the party earned 9% of the 1892 popular vote, won the presidential electoral votes of four states (not to mention electing 10 congressmen, 5 senators, 3 governors, and 1,500 state legislators). However the party's power quickly faded as the Democratic Party co-opted much of the Populist platform while internal disputes culminated in the Populists placing the Dems' 1896 nominee at the head of their own ticket. Nevertheless, the populist movement's influence continued to be felt through various 20th century reforms including direct election of senators, presidential term limits, and abandonment of the gold standard.
posted by nakedcodemonkey on Jan 5, 2005 - 7 comments

Turning the tables on Anti-Choice Protesters

Turning Pickets Into Pledges Planned Parenthood has launched a new program that "creates a no-win situation for anti-choice protesters — the more picketers who demonstrate outside a Planned Parenthood clinic, the more donations that clinic receives." This campaign allows supporters to pledge between 25 cents and one dollar per protester -- not a lot of money, but it adds up to thousands over time.
posted by zarq on Dec 23, 2004 - 29 comments

Medal of Freedom for Iraq

Medals of Freedom awarded and I'd like to make some smart comment about current Iraqi conditions and the award and the presenter, but why bother - make your own.
posted by jim-of-oz on Dec 17, 2004 - 27 comments

President George W. Bush arrested upon arrival in Canada

Canadian authorities have arrested US President George W. Bush and charged him with offences under Canada's War Crimes Act. Says (Canadian Prime Minister) Paul Martin: “This decision was not made lightly. But, it was also a decision that was impossible not to make. The United States is not outside the rule of law, and cannot expect to get an unlimited “free pass”. This decision puts a grave strain upon both our nations, and I urge calm and restraint from our American neighbours, as well as from Canadians. I have met with the cabinet, and with our colleagues in the House. This is a time of great crisis for us as a nation. But as people, we will survive this test. Earlier I enacted the Emergency War Powers Act. This is necessary to guarantee our domestic security. This is not a time for panic, for lawlessness, for anything other than a responsible and sobre focus on what lies immediately ahead.”
posted by 327.ca on Nov 29, 2004 - 75 comments

It's just not Wright.

Only about 350 of the original 400 structures designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright are still standing. As of last week, that number has decreased by one. The demolition of the 1916 W.S. Carr house in Grand Beach, Michigan was the first Wright building in over 30 years to be demolished. Mark another loss to the heritage of U.S. Modernism.
posted by ScottUltra on Nov 16, 2004 - 12 comments

schama divided America

Onward Christian soldiers or the Divided States of America "In the wee small hours of November 3 2004, "a new country appeared on the map of the modern world: the DSA, the Divided States of America." But is this really anything new? In his novel "Sybal"or "The Two Nations" Benjaman Disraeli described the England of his day and said that it comprised not one but "two nations between whom there is no intercourse and no sympathy; who are as ignorant of each other's habits, thoughts, and feelings, as if they were dwellers in different zones, or inhabitants of different planets; who are formed by different breeding, are fed by a different food, are ordered by different manners, and are not governed by the same laws." Out of the divisions of Watergate and the Vietnam war the modern American Right Wing built it self up from the ashes of the Nixon downfall and the party has labored for the past 30 years to build a powerful and united party with the help of of its very own homegrown American mullahs. And of course, no one has been better at surfing this Republican wave than the Bush family. And for the right wing the revolution has just started.
posted by thedailygrowl on Nov 5, 2004 - 71 comments

No Race-Neutral Racism: Targeting African-Americans Is as Racist as it Looks

Racially-Based Suppression of the African-American Vote: The Role It May Play in the Upcoming Presidential Election What exactly is racially-based vote suppression? Simply defined, it is the targeting of potential voters, based on their race, in an attempt to suppress the exercise of their right to vote for the candidate of their choice.
posted by y2karl on Oct 30, 2004 - 34 comments

Take my ballot away out of my cold, dead hands

160 observers couldn't monitor the election in Bexar County Texas, let alone the whole US. -- National Journal's Charlie Cook. A hundred and sixty, though, isn't the half of it. [plenty more inside]
posted by dhartung on Oct 23, 2004 - 13 comments

What are the US and Israel really afraid of in Iran?

What are the US and Israel really afraid of in Iran?
From Political Theory Daily Review
posted by y2karl on Oct 6, 2004 - 11 comments

Amateur Political Multimedia

This is the first presidential election where the power of personal computers have been put to use by large numbers of amateurs to create their own ads, cartoons, and multimedia political statements. Some are ridiculous, some are inventive, and some are well, amateurish, but they are all done by people trying to express their political views in a way that may seem to make more of a difference then by casting a ballot. I know that the links I've posted are anti-bush slanted, but to be honest they are easier to find...
posted by copacetix on Oct 6, 2004 - 7 comments

foreign-born presidents

Foreign-born presidents reviewed again. NYT link. Some previous discussion here.
posted by yoga on Oct 6, 2004 - 21 comments

Obligatory post-debate thread.

Obligatory post-debate thread. Who do you think won? Why? Do the VP debates matter?
posted by skallas on Oct 5, 2004 - 159 comments

The Electoral Commission cites *me* as 'human'.

The racist American Election Thousands of [Florida] felons could get to vote this November for one reason: They're Hispanic.
posted by dash_slot- on Sep 28, 2004 - 17 comments

If America were Iraq, what would it be like?

If America were Iraq, what would it be like? Private armies totaling 275,000 men; platoons of Christian Soldiers Militia holed up in Arlington National Cemetery; the grounds of the White House constantly under mortar fire; the Secretary of State, President, and Attorney General all assassinated in the past year; and the Air Force routinely bombing Billings, Flint, Philadelphia, and parts of LA and DC to destroy "safe houses" of "criminal gangs."
posted by johnnydark on Sep 27, 2004 - 34 comments

Red Blue USA Cartogram

Those of us following the daily heart attack that is electoral-vote.com will notice a new site feature today. If you've ever wondered how the popular vote can be so evenly split when the red state / blue state breakdown glares so overwhelmingly crimson, now you can see a map of the US with states inflated/shrunk according to the proportions of their electoral votes. Presumably, this map will be updated, along with the standard one, with new polling data daily. [thanks to EB for originally pointing me to the site]
posted by scarabic on Sep 14, 2004 - 95 comments

A Bush win and its likely consequensces.

What If Bush Wins? Sixteen writers ,right and left, predict the likely consequences of a second term for President Bush.
posted by thedailygrowl on Sep 13, 2004 - 43 comments

The inertia of technology

Was Iraq always about Iran? Iran turns toward the United States, again.
posted by four panels on Aug 19, 2004 - 69 comments

Election

An OpEd piece by Bruce Springsteen, announcing the tour of Vote for Change, the umbrella of a new group including the Dave Matthews Band, Pearl Jam, R.E.M., the Dixie Chicks, Jurassic 5, James Taylor and Jackson Browne. (NYT)
posted by semmi on Aug 5, 2004 - 71 comments

“It’s getting kind of hectic up in this piece.”

New Details Surface A light hearted look at what goes on inside the halls of the United States Senate.
posted by chunking express on Jul 19, 2004 - 4 comments

Contemporary Chinese Art From China and the US

Regeneration: Contemporary Chinese Art From China and the US.
posted by hama7 on Jul 9, 2004 - 3 comments

Thousandth U.S. soldier dies in War on Terror.

Over a thousand U.S. soldiers have died in the War on Terror. As of today, 872 soldiers have died in Operation Iraqi Freedom and 129 in Operation Enduring Freedom. Time for a moment of silence, perhaps, before sharing your reflections on the subject.
posted by insomnia_lj on Jul 7, 2004 - 51 comments

Health-care costs shoot up, millions in U.S. left gasping

Health-care costs shoot up, millions in U.S. left gasping "...there are signs of growing frustration. The Gallup Organization reported in January that for the first time since 1992, when Americans are polled about urgent health problems facing the country, the cost of health care is No. 1, ahead of issues such as cancer, obesity, and smoking..."
posted by Postroad on Jul 4, 2004 - 76 comments

What’s his accomplishment? That he’s no longer an obnoxious drunk?

Reagan's Son is Not Too Impressed. [An interesting Article from Salon, More Inside.]
posted by chunking express on Jun 16, 2004 - 32 comments

Do you know enough to vote?

U.S. Citizenship test. Can you get 8 out of ten???
posted by flatlander on Jun 10, 2004 - 81 comments

lies, damned lies

Terrorist incidents actually ROSE in 2003, but the State Department's "Patterns of Global Terrorism" report, issued April 29 (see Appendix G for an easy chart), said the exact opposite. Senior Bush administration officials immediately hailed it as objective proof that they were winning the war on terrorism. The report is considered the authoritative yardstick of the prevalence of terrorist activity around the world. Reports like this one were all over the news in April--will the fact that it was a lie be reported as widely? And can we trust anything this administration says anymore?
posted by amberglow on Jun 9, 2004 - 44 comments

Democracy...ummm - sometime ?

"No voting rights for YOU......boy!"- Florida's illegal purges of voter rolls to continue for 3rd national election? Election head resigns. While Florida refuses to release the "purge lists" to CNN, "The head of Florida's elections division resigned Monday amid reports he was feeling political heat over a push to purge thousands of suspected felons from the state's voter rolls." (Tallahassee Sun-Sentinel) " there has been little action (and worse, really) on Florida's agreement to reinstate illegally purged voters to Florida voting rolls that resulted from an NAACP lawsuit over the 2000 election ["Many voters said their votes didn't count or they were turned away from polls due to mistakes on voter lists, busy telephone lines at election headquarters, punch-card voting machine foul-ups and other problems...Statewide, the largest numbers of voting problems were found in precincts with high proportions of black and elderly voters." The NYT editorially acknowledged the scandal on February 15, 2004.]

On May 21, 2002, Ashcroft's Justice Department began a suit against Florida counties "for purging Black voters from voter rolls and other violations of civil rights" Now, four years after the 2000 election, illegally "purged" Florida voters will not be notified until it is "too late to have their rights restored for this election - or are turned away on Election Day", reports the Tampa Tribune. "The vast majority of them are black and would be likely to vote Democratic." It's difficult for convicted felons to regain the right to vote in Florida, but many on the "purge" lists were not (in 2000) and still are not felons at all. [ note : Greg Palast - busy of late - must be most credited with blowing this story wide open. See here here, here.....]
posted by troutfishing on Jun 9, 2004 - 46 comments

Juan Cole remembers Reagan.

Juan Cole remembers Reagan. Cole: I did not say anything yesterday about Ronald Reagan's death. The day a person dies he has a right to be left alone. But yesterday is now history, and Reagan's legacy should not pass without comment.
posted by skallas on Jun 7, 2004 - 25 comments

Malaria vaccine casues permanent brain damage

In the can-anything-else-go-wrong file, US Troops suffer from permanent brain damage after being administered malaria treatment. For as big a logistical challenge a war might be, and technological advances in mass support systems, you'd think the joint-forces would do a better job?
posted by omidius on May 27, 2004 - 11 comments

protecting ancient sites in Iraq

Protecting the Cradle Kirkuk Air Base -- US Army Colonel works with Iraqi archaeological officials to protect nearby ancient sites.

Meanwhile at more secluded mounds, looters continue to plunder the sites and to erase the tangible record of the world's earliest civilizations. "When you come here at night, it looks like a city, there are so many lights," [Archaeological official Abdul-Amir] Hamdani said, looking out over the arid scrubland where thieves swarm after dark.
posted by mcgraw on May 25, 2004 - 6 comments

unmitigated gall

US demands war crimes immunity But human rights campaigners said the Iraq prison abuse scandal proves that the US needs to be held to account. "Given the recent revelations... the US has picked one hell of a moment to ask for special treatment," said Richard Dicker of Human Rights Watch. -- the annual renewal of US protection from international prosecution for war crimes when serving under UN auspices comes to a vote on Monday.
posted by amberglow on May 22, 2004 - 34 comments

the wrong morons

The Wrong Morons. (from the Army Times) "Around the halls of the Pentagon, a term of caustic derision has emerged for the enlisted soldiers at the heart of the furor over the Abu Ghraib prison scandal: the six morons who lost the war...But the folks in the Pentagon are talking about the wrong morons."
posted by Ty Webb on May 11, 2004 - 23 comments

Mistreatment of Prisoners Is Called Routine in U.S.

Mistreatment of Prisoners Is Called Routine in U.S. "Physical and sexual abuse of prisoners, similar to what has been uncovered in Iraq, takes place in American prisons with little public knowledge or concern, according to corrections officials, inmates and human rights advocates..."
posted by Postroad on May 8, 2004 - 34 comments

Why choose the lesser Evil?

The Most Important Press Conference of This (US) Election Cycle! (It's not quite Friday, but it's Flash. Really flash)
posted by bonehead on May 6, 2004 - 18 comments

City-data pictures

City-Data has a lot of statistics on about every city, town and village in the US. While there is nothing new about this service, I enjoyed being able to compare cities and towns of interest. What inspired me to post it here though, are the pages of random pictures submitted to the site from all over the country. Basically, you get a diverse collage of how people see their own locals. Here's a nice example.
posted by Recockulous on Apr 25, 2004 - 9 comments

Red vs. Blue and Political Self-Segregation

Red vs. Blue and Political Self-Segregation:
“Republicans and Democrats joke these days that they can’t understand each other, that they feel as though they live on different planets. It’s no joke. They do. One of the reasons American politics is so bitter is that Republicans and Democrats are less likely today to live in the same community than at any time in the last 55 years.”
The Austin-American Statesman’s Bill Bishop begins a series of articles on the increasing political segregation across the US—a variety of segregation that has surprisingly increased while others (for example, racial) have declined. Timothy Noah of Slate has some thoughts. For background, it’s been discussed elsewhere that the traditional 2000 election red vs. blue state map is misleading and that a gradated county map might be more enlightening. Here’s one. Here’s an analysis with a different take on the data. And here are some other interesting cartograms of that election’s results. [Alternative Links Inside]
posted by Ethereal Bligh on Apr 22, 2004 - 90 comments

Kashmir

Has the US promised Kashmir to Pakistan? During his recent visit, Colin Powell named Pakistan a US ally. This move has people in India concerned about what the US is willing to give Pakistan to fight Al-Qaeda. [The site has pop-ups. Sorry.]
posted by SandeepKrishnamurthy on Mar 30, 2004 - 9 comments

Europe and John Kerry

Europe Is Deeply In Love With John Kerry. How Will America React? He's liberal but not an outright socialist; he has Polish origins and an Irish surname; he's better connected to the British Royal Family than that embarrassing proto-prole Bush; he was educated in Switzerland; he speaks French beautifully and, above all, he's married to a spirited Portuguese woman who watches his every step... [More inside.]
posted by MiguelCardoso on Mar 6, 2004 - 69 comments

the outside

How many Americans own passports? Working with passports issued and the US population, it gives an idea of around 20%. Why do so many Americans stay at home?
posted by the fire you left me on Feb 24, 2004 - 98 comments

Bush calls for same-sex marriage-ban amendment

Bush calls for same-sex marriage-ban amendment Pres. Bush called for a constitutional amendment against gay marriage today, blaming "activist judges", the Massachusettes Supreme Court, and the mayor of San Francisco, among others, for attempting "to change the most fundamental institution of civilization."

How this call for an amendment plays out remains to be seen, but Bush is taking a strong stance on this issue, in what some see as another 'big headline' proposal during the election season. What will this mean for the civil rights of homosexuals in this country? And how will voters react in November?
posted by nyukid on Feb 24, 2004 - 377 comments

so maybe we'll hear about policy positions instead of botox injections?

Media for Democracy -- a non-partisan citizens' initiative to monitor mainstream news coverage of the 2004 elections and advocate fair, democratic and issue-oriented standards of reporting. The project links voters with more than 100 independent media reform groups in a targeted campaign to prevent the types of media mistakes -- such as early, erroneous and politically biased projections -- that plagued the 2000 election. Brought to you by Mediachannel.org, who recently called primary coverage "Electotainment."
posted by amberglow on Jan 30, 2004 - 2 comments

Is The BBC The United Nations Of Broadcasting?

Trusting The Redcoats: How many independent-minded Americans actually rely on the BBC (specially the World Service) for accurate coverage of American politics? Not to mention The Guardian. Is it a strictly an elitist, liberal/left-wing phenomenon? What does it mean? What does it say about better-informed liberal newspapers and media of the U.S.? If so, why aren't like-minded Europeans just as cosmopolitan and, say, pay the same attention to news sources like The New York Times, NPR and others, rather than stolidly sticking to their own national staples?
posted by MiguelCardoso on Jan 14, 2004 - 71 comments

Mad Cow USA

After reading that beef has been recalled from my local grocery store, I spent some time reading Mad Cow USA a book written back in 1997 but not widely published because of fears of repercussions under the Texas food disparagement act. AlterNet has an article written by one of the book's authors summarizing some of the key points of the book. Some claim that only ground beef is infected, while others claim that's bull. mad-cow.org has a lot of good information on the topic, and it seems the powers that be are going to blame Canada.
posted by woil on Dec 30, 2003 - 14 comments

A Sightseer's Guide to Engineering

A Sightseer's Guide to Engineering. Engineering sights around the USA.
posted by plep on Dec 21, 2003 - 8 comments

What is this, Bizarro-World?

The War on Drugs hasn't been working at all well. So let's make it even less sensible: harsher penalties, invasion of privacy, all that jazz. The proposal is surreal, but fits in with the rest of US Drug Policy: rapists aren't denied federal funds for post-secondary schooling, but pot-heads are; you can spend more time in jail for dealing weed than for murder; gonna deal pot, ya might as well deal speed, it's the same jailtime. And now... let's encourage dealers to sell pot with more carcinogenic tars! [link goes to NORML, possibly NSFW, danger: encourages political activism]
posted by five fresh fish on Nov 26, 2003 - 16 comments

Impeach King Andy!

Impeach Andrew Johnson.
posted by me3dia on Nov 7, 2003 - 6 comments

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