Stupid Sex Tricks: Don’t try this at home, kiddies…

Or in a bar, either:

Police in the Baden-Württemburg city of Tuttlingen responded Tuesday to growing online chatter among teenagers that they could become intoxicated using the vodka tampons without having alcohol on their breath.

This is not true, police said, denying that it was an effective way to get drunk. They also warned girls that the alcohol could damage vaginal walls and increase the risk of infection. Boys have reportedly also been using tampons anally.

“I believe this is very dangerous,” head of a children’s clinic in Singen told southern German paper Südkurier last week. “For us this is a new thing.”

In early March a 14-year-old girl collapsed during a street festival in Konstanz, apparently highly intoxicated from using a vodka tampon, the paper reported.

Youth researchers have since found out that this form of alcohol abuse is trendy in the region.

But teens who believe they can hide the smell of alcohol consumption are wrong, experts told the paper.

They’re not kidding. The smell of alcohol seeps out through your pores. There is NO way to conceal it, and this just sounds like a terrific way to end up with inflamed mucous membranes.

Not to mention a hangover up the wazoo!

What’s Chavecito doing in Argentina today?

Funny you should ask! He’s there to sign trade treaties:

…and be guest of honor at a luncheon, where president Cristina Fernández gave this very moving, emotional toast in thanks for Venezuela’s help in getting Argentina through its economic crisis of a decade ago:

And yes, for her this is very personal; her late husband, Néstor Kirchner, was president of Argentina then. More than half the country was below the poverty line in the wake of the great sovereign debt default, and many were starving. The situation was dire for Kirchner, who was just newly elected–narrowly edging out Carlos Menem, whose policies were largely to blame for Argentina’s crisis in the first place. Kirchner was widely expected to continue in the Menem vein because he had no other apparent choice, but he was too smart for that. He called on Chavecito for help, and Chavecito came through. The IMF is no longer breathing down Argentina’s neck because Chavecito helped Néstor Kirchner kick ‘em to the curb. (And if the grateful comments on Cristina’s Facebook page are anything to go by, droves of Argentines happily credit him with changing their lives for the better.)

Oh yeah, and the ‘Cito is also in country to pick up a prize…for supporting popular journalism, no less:

The president of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, will receive an award on Tuesday from the faculty of journalism of the University of La Plata for his “support for popular communication”, according to academic sources on Saturday.

Chávez will be at the university to receive the Rodolfo Walsh Prize for Latin American presidents supporting popular communication, as part of a visit to Argentina to meet with his counterpart Cristina Fernández, according to the dean of the faculty, Florencia Saintout.

“We clearly believe that in Venezuela there is freedom of the press and we will present the award to the president in recognition of his support for popular media,” said the dean in an interview with Radio Diez in Buenos Aires.

“The Rodolfo Walsh prizes are awarded to those in Argentina and Latin America who support popular communication, democracy and the freedom of the peoples,” states a press release from the university.

For this reason, the Venezuelan leader will receive the honor “for having demonstrated his unquestionable and genuine dedication toward the liberty of the peoples, consolidating Latin American unity, defending human rights, and being in accordance with the truth and democratic values,” according to the faculty.

“For us it’s been a great joy to know that Chávez will come to receive the award, but also so he can talk and discuss with the students,” said the dean, who has also awarded the same prize in 2008 to the president of Bolivia, Evo Morales.

Translation mine.

I thought I’d better give you that because the anglo whore media will probably be giving you the business about how Venezuela is fast turning into North Korea, and how there’s zero journalistic freedom and reporters are being jailed and killed for not marching in lockstep with government demands, or some such codswallop. (Speaking of cod and walloping, will someone please take that fish and whack the Financial Times? Their presstitution stinks of cheap cologne. Can’t believe they want us to register just to see that drivel.)

(Oh yeah, and the Dissociated Press came through, too, with the predictable bucket of snot. Thanks, Nolan, for sending me that.)

And if you wonder why the prize is named for Rodolfo Walsh, and why Chavecito of all people was chosen to receive it, read up on him. Any Argentine who lived through the military dictatorship of the late ’70s and early ’80s could tell you that it’s quite fitting that Chavecito receive a prize named for a fellow leftist freedom-fighter. There was a huge crackdown on press freedom in Argentina then. Even foreign pop music wasn’t kosher, presumably because of the salacious and subversive thoughts it might foster. And the presstitutes of the commercial media there were more than happy to comply and self-censor accordingly, painting the ultra-capitalist “National Reorganization Process” as salvation instead of the ruin it was. It was up to brave individuals like Rodolfo Walsh to stand up to that and tell the truth–and in Walsh’s case, die for it.

Chavecito himself was jailed for standing up to a dictator who was never called that–the late Carlos Andrés Pérez, who toadied to the IMF just as the Argentine junta had, and who tyrannized and killed his fellow Venezuelans to enforce IMF policy, until his impeachment in 1993–and who even called for a dictatorship to replace Chavecito! In fact, just three days ago, Venezuela celebrated the 17th anniversary of Chavecito’s exit from Yare Prison, which was such a momentous occasion that the media were there to catch it all on tape:

Check out those crowds. Clearly this was no common criminal being pardoned and let go. In fact, no criminal at all in the eyes of his people. That’s right, the ex-military “putschist” that your friendly media whores and presstitutes have told you is a dictator…is in fact a popular hero. That’s why he swept the elections just four years later, and has been doing so ever since.

And his support for alternative, independent and community media is strong because he knows all too well how corrupt the corporate media are, and how far from truly independent. The people of Venezuela need voices that no conventional corporation is going to give them. The major media censored much of the news about him during his imprisonment, and did so quite happily because they and the now defunct AD/COPEI duopoly of Venezuela were the coziest of cronies. The big media chains don’t need his support, they have their corporate owners and sponsors, and their discredited buddies in what’s left of the old parties. And they are still free to print and broadcast whatever lies they want, and you are still free to believe them.

But if you’re as smart and as independent as you think you are, you’d do better to learn to look beyond them, as I have. And to look at the real situation in Venezuela, Argentina, indeed all of Latin America…which is changing for the better thanks to leaders like Cristina and him.

¡Viva Cristina, viva Chávez, viva Latinoamérica LIBRE!

Short ‘n’ Stubby: Ms. Manx senses a theme developing…

Being the astute kitty she is, Ms. Manx noticed something while she was looking for more stuff on Libya over the past week. Here’s her round-up…can you tell what the theme is?

Wired has a shocker about how the Libyan conflict is loaded with psy-ops…and they’ve been recorded, too! The Stumpy Cat is not too surprised by this; after all, this war had to be sold somehow. But she thinks it’s just great that someone went to the trouble to find out just how heavily marketed it’s been.

Meanwhile, at Canadian Dimension, Murray Dobbin has a scathing piece up that echoes, rather uncannily, my own thoughts on Libya.

And Miller-McCune finds it singularly interesting that the same European countries now leading the anti-Gaddafi campaign against Libya, are the very ones that sold him all those weapons they’re now wringing their collective hands about.

Meanwhile, The Nation waxes unusually euphemistic about the so-called “liberal hawks”, calling them “innocent”. Ms. Manx thinks ignorant would be a better word, preferably prefaced with fucking.

Bless Yansoon, then, for being more direct about the matter, and not shying away from heavily loaded words like blackmail, and for also saying that “the West is not innocent, nor is it impartial. Its interests are not those of the Libyan revolution, but aimed at guaranteeing a series of deals made by Gaddafi to the West.” It also mentions the weapons deals reference by Miller-McCune, this time bringing up the US’s contributions to the now-infamous Gaddafi arsenal. But the most damning passage, I think, is this:

Western powers have from the beginning made it difficult for the revolution to succeed on its own terms. Libya’s Transitional National Council (TNC), the body that grew out of the revolution, made a series on simple demands in the first days of the uprising. Western governments refused to accept these until certain “guarantees” were in place.

The rebels asked for the recognition of the Transitional National Council; they demanded access to the billions in sequestrated regime funds in order to buy weapons and other crucial supplies; and they demanded an immediate halt to the “mercenary flights” that provided the regime with its foot soldiers.

The answer they received was an unequivocal No. The West declared that they did not recognize “governments”, only countries. They refused to block the mercenary flights as these “security contractors” play an important role in other conflicts — such as Iraq and Afghanistan. They objected to any weapons sales as they feared that these could fall into the hands of “Islamist terrorists”, and they refused to release the funds on “legal grounds”.

Instead Western powers put a number of conditions on a revolution. They demanded that any future Libyan government would abide by all contracts signed by the Gaddafi regime. These contracts, including “generous” oil concession, had to be honored without question. Western powers demanded that the strict repression of “Islamist movements” would remain, and that Libya would maintain its role as a guardian against the migration of Africans into southern Europe.

Ms. Manx ventures that all the psy-ops mentioned by Wired also play into this somehow. Ya think, kittycat?

And at Global Research, Peter Dale Scott has been asking the taboo question as to who these Libyan rebels really are, and finding some disturbing answers. Would we in the west support this war if we heard all this openly talked about on CNN, instead of being spoon-fed the usual chicken noodle “news”? Ms. Manx doubts it very much. Which, again, makes Wired‘s psy-ops story that much more relevant.

Further to the topic of the media and its subtle (or not-so-) spoon-feeding of opinions and bullshit disguised as news, we get this neat little item from the Columbia Journalism Review, that tracks exactly when the word dictator gets trotted out. By some strange coincidence, it’s usually when some western leader or other (not naming any names, it doesn’t matter anyway) has arbitrarily decided that it’s time to get the war drums a-pounding against said leader, who used to be more or less acceptable until he did something which demonstrated him to be less than tame. This strategy, Ms. Manx notes, is applicable not only to Gaddafi, but to virtually any un-tame president of an oil-producing country, anywhere. Which no doubt explains a lot about how the democratically elected president of Venezuela keeps getting that label slapped unfairly on his little brown ass, too.

Meanwhile, Uruknet notes that the spectre of “depleted” uranium weapons is once again rearing its ugly, cancerous head. Which just has Ms. Manx shaking hers. Clearly, nobody has learned fuck-all from Iraq.

And finally, for a bit of comic relief, check out what Ms. Manx found at Raw Story on Newt Gingrich. Also, enjoy the picture of him and his lovely wife and her platinum football helmet. Ms. Manx cattily hopes that thing is good against radiation!

Harpo’s first social media campaign fail

It was up on Craigslist for a few short moments today. And boy, is it a thing of beauty. Behold:

It reads as follows; spelling and punctuation errors as in original:

Writers needed to post Right-wing Comments to social media and news outlets.

We are a social media company working for a political organization, hired to help balance the left-wing bias of the major media outlets by supplying a team of writers who will post to newspaper comments, media forums, FB pages, etc. We are NOT officially afiliated with Harper campaign

You writing must be strong, right-wing and use supplied talking points without bogging down in too much detail. You are creating an online persona with a consistent tone. Ideally you can find or make up facts and statistics to stir controversy. Where suited humour, sarcasm and personal insults are welcome.

You are a news junky who is able to log on to news forums, facebook pages several times a day. You are able to write comments tailored to new topics while always repeating key talking points.

Compensation: TBD. hourly rate and volume of online activity. Bonuses for controversial postings that heat up a topic or forum thread.

How to apply: We are more interested in your writing than your resume. To apply submit a 100 word post based on the headline “Ignatieff Promises No Coalition after Election” Show us that you can write from a right wing character voice, score points, stir outrage and use humour.

Be sure to include your name, email and cell number so we can contact you.

Sorry, only candidates who submit the best test post submissions will be contacted for an interview.

*Location: National
*Compensation: TBD, hourly rate and volume of online activity. Bonuses for controversial postings that heat up a topic or forum thread.
*This is a part-time job.
*Principals only. Recruiters, please don’t contact this job poster.
*Please, no phone calls about this job!
*Please do not contact job poster about other services, products or commercial interests.

PostingID: 2291333753

It was posted at 1:03 pm, Pacific time…and removed less than an hour later. Gee, I wonder why.

Professional trolling: Nothing new for conservatives, and certainly not in forums. I know ‘em by the smell alone. So if you see anyone in a newspaper forum dissing the other candidates in our coming national election, now you know. Eh?

And please, don’t hesitate to point the finger at anyone who makes shit up and spouts Tory talking points. Call ‘em out for their trolling, folks. They’re paid to do it, they may as well get a run for their money.

Wankers of the Week: Mission (Creep) Accomplished

Look out below! The “humanitarian” bombs and missiles are raining on Libya; freedom is on the march again! And what’s that smell? The stench of death? Napalm in the morning? “Depleted” uranium burning a hole in someone’s gonads? Oh, I know…it’s the wonderful waft of warfare. And wanking. And here’s who’s been firing the toxic jizzum on all cylinders this week:

1. Bobby Fucking Franklin. Yes, the stupidest man in in the state of Georgia really went there this week, comparing abortion rights to…drumroll please…Moammar Gaddafi! Hmmm, what shall I compare him to…oh, I know…drumroll please…A PILE OF FUCKING TURDS!!! But y’know what? Even a pile of fucking turds can be right once in a while. This guy has yet to beat that track record. The US has more than its share of the most delusional people in the world, and he is the perfect example of one.

2. David Fucking Prosser. Doesn’t calling your fellow judge a bitch qualify as contempt of court? How about threatening to bomb her from the air, like Libya? Given this one’s lengthy history of bizarre anti-woman (and anti-child, in the case of kids molested by priests) statements, I’d say this one doesn’t deserve to be called “Your Honor”. Off the bench with him!

3. Scott Fucking Feschuk. What’s the difference between an escort and a hooker? Pay grade, pay grade, pay grade. What’s the difference between a prostitute of any pay grade, and this Maclean’s scribbler? Class, class, class!

4. Brent Fucking Girouex. Well, I’ll give this homophobic kiddie-diddler credit for one thing: Sodomizing the gay out of teenage boys is a more novel “cure” than trying to pray it out of a grown man, any day.

5. Mike Fucking Pence. This one’s right up there with Wanker #1 for bizarre anti-choice antics. Yeah, let’s just let poor women (and children) die, as long as they don’t “kill their babies”!

6. Roger Fucking Noriega. No, there is NOT a “Chávez terror network” on your goddamn doorstep. There is a get-your-head-outta-your-fucking-ass network here, ready to kick your exposed buttocks until something shakes loose. Nice job referencing Claire Sterling–her discredited book is based on black propaganda campaigns seeded by the CIA for whom you yourself undoubtedly work. Just slap an “Islamist” face on the imaginary commie terrorists, move the headquarters of the imaginary terror network from Moscow to Tehran, and presto! Instant crapaganda, just add slaughter. PS: Nice use of an imaginary “Venezuelan government source”, too.

7. Don Fucking Young. Looks like Sarah Fucking Palin is not the only Alaskan politician in a tango with fascist separatist movements. This one went so far as to declare his treason openly. Impeach the fucker!

8. Donald Fucking Trump. He got into bed quite willingly with Gaddafi; now he claims he “screwed” him? I didn’t think he swung that way. I was convinced he’d do anything–and anyone–for money!

9. John Fucking Lott. The “academic” father of US gun nuttery is now so intellectually bankrupt, he has to go running to Andrew Fucking Breitbart’s Big Fucking Lie site for currency to spend, because no one else will give him the time of day. Tee hee hee.

10. John Fucking McCain. War really IS peace to some people. How else to explain how a costly rain of missiles and death upon Libya could actually “save” them from a “horrible bloodbath”? (Incidentally, this hefty hunk of Teh Stoopid should serve to remind those who think a wingnut would have done better in the White House that no, a wingnut would not.)

11. The Fucking Harper Government. Yes, THAT Harper Government! Contempt of Parliament, you say? Why, I had no ide…ha…haha…hahahahahahahahaha! Ahem…sober up, Bina, don’t laugh like that, they’ll think you’re hysterical. Well, it’s not as if we don’t have anything to get hysterical about here, is it? Harpo is out in front of the cameras, pretending he’s not really electioneering when everyone and their dog knows he is, attacking the opposition about coalitions while joining the latest US-led Coalition of the Killing, preaching about the need to spread freedom and democracy all over the world while suppressing, denying and undermining it right here at home. Pardon me while I take the flag off my backpack and the maple leaf off my lapel. Until we’re out of Libya and Harpo’s out of office, I’m not gonna be proud of my country anymore.

12. Jennifer Fucking Griffin. About the only good thing that can be said about this FUX Snoozer is that finally, FINALLY, the Chicken Noodle Network has twigged to the fact that FUX Snooze, its journalistic role model of the last decade or so, LIES! And all it took was one little (unretracted) piece of bullshit about reporters being used as human shields in Libya. FUCK!

13. Randy Fucking Hopper, again. The corruption and hypocrisy and sleaze of this Wisconsin teabag just keep on getting corrupter, hypocritical-er, and sleazier. Now word is that his much younger mistress has been hired (without even having had to apply!) at $11,000 a year more than the last person to hold the (state) job. Considering that he was supposedly elected to “hold down taxes and spending”, I can’t wait to hear how he justifies that.

14. Ted Fucking Nugent. Dudes who can’t string together a coherent song should not be writing editorials for even a high-school newspaper, but trust the Washington Moonie Times not to fucking know that. After all, they are inferior to even the worst high-school rag in the world. PS to Sun Myung Moon: Is racism acceptable to you so long as it’s directed only at Africans and persons of African ancestry? Inquiring minds, etc.

15. Silvano Fucking Tomasi. Oh boo fucking hoo, the Vatican’s homophobia is not being tolerated anymore! Intolerance of intolerance is intolerable! Where is my tiny fiddle? Must have been stolen by one of the mariachi cucarachas again. BTW, isn’t it rich how an apologist for the world’s biggest pedophile closet considers homosexuality to be on a level with…drumroll please…PEDOPHILIA? And how hilarious is it to insist that “states must regulate sexual behavior” when the Vatican routinely sweeps its own homos and pedos under the rug? How hollow does a plea for the “human right” to be a homophobe ring after all that, eh?

16. Rush Fucking Limbaugh. The Pigman thinks Libya isn’t an oil war? It is for Europe. I guess he’s resentful that the cheese-eating French are getting first dibs on all that light, sweet Libyan crude. PS to Piggy: Da Donald’s birther spoutings aren’t a “service”, they’re a STUPIDITY.

17. Giorgio Fucking Mammoliti. The failed former mayoral candidate wants Toronto to have a red-light district…on the Islands. Where families live, and where the crime rate is low. The rationale: “They have a nude beach at Hanlan’s Point.” As though nudity just naturally had to lead to sex? What kind of logic is that?

18. and 19. Sharron Fucking Angle and Christine O’Fucking Donnell. Add two more teabags to the lists of the senseless tree-killers. Yes, that’s right…they both have books coming out. Oh joy, oh bliss.

20. Jim Fucking DeMint. His motto may as well be “Die, die for the sake of my ideology”, because that’s what his actions boil down to. The stupid part is, he’s wasting money in the name of “saving” it. As for human life, if you’re not a fetus, he doesn’t want to hear from you. Nice senator you got there, South Carolina.

21. James O’Fucking Keefe. So…now he’s in deep debt, as well as deep doo-doo? Looks good on him. You know your “documentaries” have no credibility when you can’t finance them any other way than to first max out your credit cards, then go begging for “donations” to “defray the expense” while whining all the way about being held back by big corrupt everybody! Legitimate filmmakers generally manage to finance their operations without going to such embarrassing lengths.

22. Carlos Fucking Lam. False flag operations: they’re not just for foreign wars anymore. The US’s war against its own working people also benefits mightily from them…or would do so, were their perpetrators not exposed, as this one now is. The fucker was dumb enough to actually use the words “false flag”, too.

23. Ian Fucking Gillespie. Naturally he works for Sunmedia…one of Canada’s most ignorant, and ignorance-boosting, corporate news chains. His influence is small, but I swear I felt my IQ drop ten points just reading that piece of fucking drivel I just linked. If you also feel like you’ve just caught Teh Stoopid, don’t blame your water…blame him.

And finally, to all those on the so-called left who fell for that stupid “Hugo Chávez thinks capitalism killed life on Mars” story that Reuters ginned up. I expect the right to fall for this kind of shit because they are just so fucking dumb anyway, but those of you who should know better and yet don’t? You are just plain contemptible. Can’t you be bothered to do any homework at all? Did you all flunk Spanish in high school, or did you just never learn it? Has it never occurred to you to question the very nature of your “independent” corporate media? Reuters, which has a track record for bad reporting on Venezuela as is, had to devote three fucking space cadets to one pitiful non-story about an offhand remark which was not even made in earnest. The main author is one Eyanir Fucking Chinea, who has also emitted such journalistic gems as this highly questionable one on murder stats in Venezuela, asserting that the murder rate has “quadrupled” under Chávez. Or how about this other opus, taking up the cause for the oppos without even a blush? Or how about this fine little turdnugget which just came out today, about Guillermo Zuloaga, who is wanted not for his opposing views, but for disseminating putschist crapaganda? You don’t suppose there’s a political agenda in that, do you? Especially with Chavecito’s approval rating, and his electoral support, both riding high going into next year’s federal election in Venezuela? Did you even have the faintest clue that his opponents are all either blatantly crooked or total fucking buffoons, or both? Did you even know that the “student hunger strike” your media have been wringing their hands over involved precious little actual hunger–and a great deal of cheating, caught on camera? Nahhhh, of course you didn’t. Reuters would never tell you that; they just report on all those silly people as if they were serious, and they do it with a straight face, while blatantly misrepresenting the real words of an undeniably smart, sane, effective leader. They really don’t have the right to call themselves a news agency anymore, since what they’re dealing in is not news but pro-corporatist crapaganda.

But you don’t care about that, right? Venezuela is just some third-world country with a dictator as far as you’re concerned, and you’re already prepared to cheerlead Barack Obama’s next war, right down there, because you, a Serious Person, seriously believe Chavecito really said that and meant it. Oh hell, the jokes even write themselves, saving your lazy little “liberal” mind so much strain and effort! So why bother doing any homework? Obey your corporate overlords, and forget that another world is not only possible, it is necessary–and Latin America is making it happen without you.

Good night, and get fucked!

Festive Left Friday Blogging: Raise the flag!

This past Wednesday was Sea Day in Bolivia–the day the country commemorates the loss of its seacoast to Chile during the War of the Pacific. That’s why landlocked Bolivia still has a navy, even though currently it only patrols Bolivia’s major rivers, and Lake Titicaca (which borders on Peru). But what is gone is not forgotten, and Evo makes an especially strong point of raising the flag to it:

Until recently, it looked as though Evo might actually get sea rights through Chile; he was in talks with Michelle Bachelet and things looked good. Now Sebastián Piñera is in the Moneda Palace, and he’s being a dick about it. But Evo being Evo, he’ll probably wear him down in due course, with sheer dignity and persistence.

Sail on, Evo!

Dear Miami Herald: Learn how to spell TERRORIST!

Luis Posada Carriles hasn’t been in Cuba for at least five decades now, and that’s not the only thing the Miami Whore–sorry, Herald–gets wrong about him. I’ll excerpt a few passages from one of their latest reports on him. It’s called “Cuban militant Posada is heard on tape discussing bombings”. See if you can spot their problem:

Jurors in the Luis Posada Carriles perjury trial on Monday finished listening to more than two hours of taped excerpts from an interview the Cuban exile militant gave to a New York Times writer 13 years ago in which he talks about bombings in Cuba in 1997 that killed an Italian tourist.

The excerpts were played for the jury by Posada’s lead defense attorney, Arturo V. Hernandez, in an apparent bid to show that his client did not admit to proud “authorship’’ of the Cuban bombing campaign as then New York Times writer Ann Louise Bardach and another reporter, Larry Rohter, wrote in a New York Times article based on the interview published July 12, 1998.

But in testimony Monday, her fourth day on the witness stand, Bardach again stood by the story noting that while Posada did not directly say he was the proud author of the attacks, he clearly conveyed proud authorship of the actions in the “totality’ of his statements.

It was the first time since the trial began Jan. 10 that the jurors have heard the entire tape of excerpts, two hours and 40 minutes, from Posada’s interview with Bardach in Aruba in June 1998. The jurors followed the tape, in which Posada’s words are hard to decipher, with a voluminous transcript.

In their story, Bardach and Rohter wrote that in the interview, “Mr. Posada proudly admitted authorship of the hotel bomb attacks last year.’’

That’s the first. Did you spot it? No? Here’s another. This is their sidebar:

This one makes it much clearer, because the mistake is repeated three times. In all three cases, Posada is referred to as a “Cuban militant”. A pretty grievous error, since he was never a, er, militant on behalf of Cuba, but on behalf of the CIA, against Cuba. Actual Cuban militants look more like this:

Or like this:

But not, most emphatically not, like this:

Cuba Journal reports that this was Luis Posada Carriles’s US Army photo. He was a second lieutenant with the rear-guard echelon of the infamous Brigade 2506. I say infamous because this brigade carried out the foiled assault on Cuba otherwise known as the Bay of Pigs Invasion. Posada wasn’t in it at the time, though; he joined the brigade AFTER that epic failure. Invasor reports that Posada was in the CIA’s training camp at the time. He didn’t get around to formally joining the US Army (no doubt working in what we laughingly call intelligence) until 1963.

A militant? Perhaps, but certainly not a Cuban one. A military member is a more accurate way of saying it; a member of the US military, more accurate still. Most accurate of all, though, would be to call him what he really was: a CIA operative and a professional terrorist. And he was also a torturer. But let’s let Invasor sketch the picture for us:

Posada was sent to direct the repressive organs in Venezuela, first in the Police General Division (DIGEPOL) and later in the Department of Intelligence and Prevention Services (DISIP). He was connected to the assassination plots against Cuban officials in Chile and the one orchestrated against Cuban President Fidel Castro during his visit to that country in 1971. He had received and delivered to the commando in charge false documentation crediting them as members of the Venezuelan television team. He is also related to the disappearance of the Cuban officials murdered in August 1976 in Argentina.

He carried out several criminal missions in various countries of the area and created a team of terrorists that he sent to the Chilean Secret Police (DINA) during Pinochet’s fascist government.

Posada recruited two Venezuelans, Hernan Ricardo Losano and Freddy Lugo, to carry out Barbados Crime the sabotage against a civil Cuban airliner in Barbados. These two mercenaries placed the bombs on a CUBANA airliner minutes after the flight took off the Barbados airport in October 6 1976 killing all 73 people on board. He and Orlando Bosch Avila were arrested the following day for having sponsored the crime.

When the Venezuelan police arrested Posada Carriles on October 7, 1976 they found in his office a map of the city of Washington with drawings showing the daily journey Orlando Letelier-the former Chilean foreign minister-used to take to his office before being murdered.

On August 8, 1982 Posada escaped from jail and managed to get into the Chilean embassy in Caracas, but he was sent back to prison. On November 4, 1984 he tried again to escape but he failed. On August 18, 1985 he finally managed to escape from the maximum security prison in San Juan de los Morros.

El Salvador then became the favorite sanctuary of this Cuban terrorist. In September of 1985 he joined another terrorist of Cuban origin, Felix Rodriguez Mendigutia, who had arrived in El Salvador in February of that year following Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North’s instructions to organize the air supply to the “contras” in Nicaragua to support their insurgent actions.

That same year a group of terrorists from Miami visited Posada in his refuge in El Salvador and recommended he move to Honduras. Among them were Juan Perez Franco, then president of the Brigade 2506 and Rolando Mendoza, a former mercenary of the same Brigade who also visited him in December 1988 to organize an attack against the Cuban president when he would visit Venezuela.

Quite the criminal career for a mere “militant”!

The Herald slipped up a bit in its sidebar when it mentioned his CIA ties, but other than that, it sticks to the touching story of a brave, rebellious militant, fighting for freedom on behalf of Washington against evil wicked Fidel. Someone who couldn’t possibly have bragged to Ann Louise Bardach (then of the New York Times) for three whole days about his terrorist activities against Fidel’s “totalitarian” régime:

Hernandez zeroed in on the absence of any statement in the tape or the transcript in which Posada proudly admits authorship. Hernandez specifically noted that in one passage where Bardach asks Posada to confirm a Miami Herald story about his alleged role in the bombings, the exile militant answers: “More or less.’’

Hernandez then adds: “Posada says more or less, not the same as proudly admits, wouldn’t you say, Ms. Bardach?’’

“That is just not so,’’ Bardach said. “I would agree that in that one passage, it’s an admission.’’ Later she added: “You don’t contact a reporter from the New York Times and spend three days talking. He wanted publicity.’’

Surely not to help him, a veteran of the US Army and the CIA, gain legal, permanent resident status? No, he’s just a poor misunderstood “militant” who had to slink into the US illegally, and then lie about it, because his old comrades wouldn’t grant him residency any other way, boo hoo.

I just love how the Miami Herald takes up for him, ever so subtly, while pretending to report objectively on his case. It’s so cute, and even kind of touching.

But there are times, and this is one of them, where I really wish they would learn how to spell the word we all know they’d use if they were really objective. And it’s not spelled M-I-L-I-T-A-N-T.

It’s spelled T-E-R-R-O-R-I-S-T.

What’s wrong with these pictures?

Germany’s Der Spiegel captions this photo as follows: “This photo shows the corpse of farmer’s son Gul Mudin, killed January 15, 2010, with a member of the ‘Kill Team’ posing behind it. Der SPIEGEL has published three photos from the possessions of the accused, who are alleged to have killed innocent Afghans out of pure lust for murder.”

Here’s another of the photos in question:

This one is captioned: “This photo was taken the same day, this time it’s soldier Jeremy Morlock grinning into the camera.”

Now, bearing in mind that the dead man has a name, and the name is Gul Mudin, tell me if you can see what’s wrong with this Reuters report:

(Reuters) – Germany’s Der Spiegel magazine published photos on Monday of American soldiers posed over the bloodied corpse of an Afghan civilian whose slaying is being prosecuted by the U.S. military as premeditated murder.

Disclosure of the images, among dozens seized as evidence in the prosecutions but kept sealed from public view by the military, prompted the U.S. Army to issue an apology “for the distress these photos cause” and condemning actions depicted in them as “repugnant.”

One photo shows a soldier identified as Army Specialist Jeremy Morlock, 23, of Wasilla, Alaska, broadly smiling in sunglasses as he crouches beside the bloodied, prone body of a man whose head he is holding up for the camera by the hair.

A second soldier, Private First Class Andrew Holmes, 20, is seen in a separate photo kneeling over the same corpse, also raising the victim’s head by the hair.

As published by Der Spiegel and circulated elsewhere on the Internet, the face of the body has been deliberately blurred in the pictures to render it unidentifiable.

Lawyers for both soldiers confirmed to Reuters that their respective clients are the soldiers who appear in the images. Holmes’ attorney, Daniel Conway, said the body in both photos is that of the unarmed Afghan man both men are accused of slaying on January 15, 2010, with a grenade blast and rifle fire.

Morlock and Holmes are among five Stryker Brigade soldiers facing court-martial at Joint Base Lewis McChord near Tacoma, Washington, on charges of premeditated murder stemming from the deaths of three Afghan villagers whose killings were allegedly staged to look like legitimate combat casualties.

According to his lawyers, Morlock has agreed to plead guilty later this week to three counts of murder and other offenses and to testify against his co-defendants.

Under the plea deal, still subject to approval by a military judge, he would receive a 24-year prison sentence, as opposed to the life term he faced if convicted of all charges in a trial.

Holmes has reached no such deal. Defense lawyers insist Holmes is innocent and have sought, so far unsuccessfully, to force the military to unseal a number of photos that they say would help exonerate their client for the single murder with which he is charged.

The murder cases, which grew out of a probe into hashish use by American GIs, stand as the most serious prosecution of alleged atrocities by U.S. military in Afghanistan since the war there began in late 2001.

Photos like those published by Der Spiegel have drawn comparisons with pictures of Iraqi prisoners taken by U.S. military personnel at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq in 2004.

In its statement, the U.S. Army said the photos depicted “actions repugnant to us as human beings and contrary to the standards and values of the United States Army.”

“We apologize for the distress these photos cause,” said the statement, issued through the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, adding that actions shown in the photographs were now the subject of court-martial proceedings.

“The photos appear in stark contrast to the discipline, professionalism and respect that have characterized our soldiers’ performance during nearly 10 years of sustained operations (in Afghanistan).”

Geoffrey Nathan, one of Morlock’s civilian attorneys, said publication of the photos would have no impact on the outcome of his client’s case.

“The court will render its verdict based upon the pleadings and agreement among the litigants, and the photos are not in evidence,” he told Reuters in an e-mail.

That was the entire report. Notice anything missing?

That’s right: Gul Mudin is not named.

I’m sure that’s no coincidence. This farmer’s son, Gul Mudin, is not real to them. He’s not a person to Reuters, and by extension, to anyone reading the Reuters report. He’s just a corpse being held by the hair. A half-naked corpse being posed for trophy shots by a bunch of grinning human-hunters. The way the photos were taken, we are meant to see Gul Mudin as his murderers saw him: A thing, not a person.

This all has a bearing on the report, too, and whose viewpoint is reported, and how. Notice the wording:

Disclosure of the images, among dozens seized as evidence in the prosecutions but kept sealed from public view by the military, prompted the U.S. Army to issue an apology “for the distress these photos cause” and condemning actions depicted in them as “repugnant.”

Objection, Yer Honor!

It is not the act depicted in the pictures, but the publication of the pictures, that causes “distress”, in actual fact; it was the disclosure, not the murders, that was the real grounds for “distress”. Whose “distress”? That of the US Army, of course. After all, these images tarnish their image as Good Guys to the World. Because as “repugnant” as these actions are, they’re nothing new. They are as old as war itself; the US military was doing the same things in Vietnam, as the Winter Soldier hearings made painfully clear:

So don’t anyone be fooled by the army’s efforts to sweep these pictures under the rug. What happened in them is not anomalous; it is typical. The only thing repugnant here is that they actually came to light, and the public saw what the army tacitly condones and even encourages.

Remember the Abu Ghraib photos? They weren’t supposed to come out either. When they did, it was all dismissed as “bad apples”. But somewhere in the bowels of the Pentagon, someone selected those “apples”–precisely because they had those psychopathic “Kill Team” tendencies, which the US Army in fact considers to be not merely acceptable, but highly desirable. They don’t want humanitarians in the Army; humanitarians won’t fight or kill on command. They want nice, obedient boys who won’t question orders–or better still, sick puppies, hillbillies from Wasilla who think of guys like Gul Mudin as just wolves to be shot for sport. This is a sad truth you won’t hear from mainstream sources like Reuters.

The original Winter Soldier testimony was largely suppressed by the mainstream media for the same reason: it’s all about the good-guy, GI Joe image. Any other images would spoil the heroic narrative that we’ve been meant to swallow holus-bolus. Vietnam was supposed to be about Freedom and Democracy™, not senseless indiscriminate killing for the hell of it. Afghanistan, Iraq, and now, Libya–same thing. They always tell us the same lies, and always we believe…until the “repugnant” pictures come out to show us the real story, that is.

As for poor Gul Mudin, notice that not only is he not named, his family, his village, all those who were distressed by his loss are also left out of the story.

What’s wrong with these pictures? I think you know the answer to that one as well as I do.

Short ‘n’ Stubby: Ms. Manx goes (off) nuclear

Cats are creatures of nature par excellence, which is why the not-entirely-natural disaster at Fukushima, Japan, has Ms. Manx doing a near-constant facepaw, followed by a good ol’-fashioned kitty duck-and-cover. She peeked out between her furry toes just long enough to spot these links of interest, which she asked me to pass along to you:

First up, from Japan’s Kyodo News, a creepy revelation. A neutron beam has been detected at one of the Fukushima reactors, at least 13 times. The report seems to seek to downplay that, but when the shit is actually beaming out of the fan, that can’t be good.

And, according to the NY Times, salt from evaporated seawater used to cool the reactors could lead to further cooling problems down the road. Catch-22 à la japonaise.

And that 1600-times-higher-than-normal radiation? Not a good sign. The worst thing about radiation is that without a Geiger counter, you can’t detect it. It’s invisible, inaudible, colorless, odorless, tasteless. Even radiation burns can’t be felt until after the damage is done. It’s all too easy to absorb a lethal dose through your lungs or your gut.

Courtesy of Germany’s Der Spiegel, a terrific article about how TEPCO’s general crappiness (complete with prior scandals and serious safety failures!) made a nuclear disaster in one of their power stations not only likely, but inevitable. The LA Times has its own article to similar effect.

Meanwhile, in the good-news department, Germany has been gradually weaning itself off nuclear power since the Chernobyl disaster showered the entire country in radioactive fallout. Green energy is becoming the Germans’ electricity of choice, with wind and solar growing. The Stumpy Cat is flapping her little German flag proudly, and half wishing she had a tail she could fly it from.

Economics for Dummies: Jump, you fuckers!

This one’s not entirely new, but it still sums up very accurately what I think/feel whenever I see yet another fucker spinning the old greed-is-good lie on TV or the Internets. Usually, it comes as part of a concerted effort to pry the Little People’s ever-shrinking wallets out of their hands, while shielding the already too-well-padded and adding to their padding. “Too Big to Fail” is another fine lie, and next time we hear it, I say we play this and call their bluff:

I think the screaming, falling fuckers at the end are a nice touch, don’t you?