Democracy Gone Astray

Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.

All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.

[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]

Friday, November 13, 2015

It’s Always the Same War

“To understand the nature of the present war — for in spite of the regrouping which occurs every few years, it is always the same war — one must realize in the first place that it is impossible for it to be decisive.”
— “1984,” by George Orwell

Barack Obama originally ran for president as the anti-war candidate. Now, as his second term winds down, the two George W. Bush/Obama wars are winding up, with a third in Syria. U.S. military forces are deployed elsewhere around the globe, as in drone striking in Yemen and Somalia, adding to the global conflagration. The United States is engaged in endless war.

George H. W. Bush Takes Unexpected Swipes At Cheney, Rumsfeld

Former President George H.W. Bush takes some unexpected swipes at Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, key members of his son's administration, over their reaction to the Sept. 11 attacks, in a new biography of the 41st president, Fox News reported on Wednesday.

In "Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey Of George Herbert Walker Bush," author Jon Meacham quotes Bush as saying that Cheney and Rumsfeld were too hawkish and that their harsh stance damaged the reputation of the United States, the cable news network said.

2 New Movies About Why the Powerful Are Trying to Kill Journalism

Ted Cruz holds professional journalists in such contempt that, in the aftermath of CNBC’s Republican debate, he says future debates should be moderated instead by “real journalists”—like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Marc Levin. They at least know the difference between policy, entertainment, and making a quick buck—so there would be no “gotcha” questions about nutritional-supplement companies that exploit Christian customers or finicky doubts about how cutting taxes on the very rich by $6 trillion could possibly raise revenues.

Kraft Heinz Shuts Down 7 Factories In U.S. And Canada, Shedding 2,600 Jobs

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Kraft Heinz says it will close seven factories in the U.S. and Canada over the next two years as part of a downsizing that will shed 2,600 jobs.

The company announced Wednesday it will close manufacturing facilities in Fullerton and San Leandro, California; Federalsburg, Maryland; St. Marys, Ontario, Canada; Campbell, New York; Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania; and Madison, Wisconsin. The closures will occur in the next 12 to 24 months.

In addition, the company said it would close its existing meat processing plant in Davenport, Iowa, and move production to a new state-of-the-art plant to be built several miles away.

Kraft Heinz formed from the merger of Kraft and Heinz earlier this year. The new company announced in August that 2,500 non-factory jobs would be cut following the merger.

Original Article
Author: Ryan J. Foley

Mourad Benchellali, Former Gitmo Prisoner, Detained At Toronto Airport

TORONTO — A former Guantanamo Bay prisoner turned peace activist who was detained on arrival in Canada as an apparent national security threat will likely be allowed to return to France, his lawyer said Wednesday.

Mourad Benchellali, of Lyon, was being held as a maximum security prisoner after agents refused to allow him to withdraw his request to enter Canada and go home voluntarily.

Taxing the 1%: A Cautionary Tale for Canada Finance Minister

As Bill Morneau takes over the reins of Canada’s finance ministry, among his thorniest tasks will be to implement Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s pledge to introduce a higher tax rate for the country’s top earners.

Data released by Statistics Canada this week show the costs of moving ahead.

The CIA Is an Ethics-Free Zone

I joined the CIA in January 1990.

The CIA was vastly different back then from the agency that emerged in the days after the 9/11 attacks. And it was a far cry from the flawed and confused organization it is today.

One reason for those flaws — and for the convulsions the agency has experienced over the past decade and a half — is its utter lack of ethics in intelligence operations.

Internet Surveillance Bill Could Become Disturbing Reality For UK

British spies would be allowed to legally hack into smartphones and computers under the Tory government’s new surveillance law.

Telecoms firms will be forced to help MI5, the domestic intelligence agency; MI6, overseas intelligence; and the U.K.'s Government Communications Headquarters use James Bond-style “equipment interference" -- remotely accessing phones and using them as listening devices -- as part of the draft Investigatory Powers Bill.

50% female cabinet appointments lead to 5000% increase in guys who suddenly care about merit in cabinet

OTTAWA - With Prime Minister designate Justin Trudeau preparing to announce a cabinet that is 50% women, researchers have discovered a sharp 5000% increase in the number of men who suddenly have strong opinions about how cabinet appointments should be a “meritocracy.”

Across the nation statisticians are at a loss to explain a recent and drastic jump in the number of men who have spontaneously developed hard opinions about the qualifications of Federal Cabinet Ministers.

China Has Been Spewing Out Much More CO2 Than Previously Reported

China has emitted roughly a billion more tons of carbon emissions a year over the past 15 years than it previously said, according to a report from The New York Times.

The outlet analyzed energy statistics data from China's statistical agency and found the Asian country has been burning up to 17 percent more coal than the government has disclosed. That figure translates into the entire fossil fuel emissions of Germany over a full year.