Bmaz: "There are many symbols emblematic of the battle between the American citizenry and the government of the United States in the war of transparency. One of those involves John Kiriakou. Say what you will about John Kiriakou's entrance into the public conscience on the issue of torture, he made a splash and did what all too few had, or have since, been willing to do. John Kiriakou is the antithesis of the preening torture monger apologist in sullen 'big boy pants', Jose Rodriquez. And, so, people like Kiriakou must be punished. Not by the national security bullies of the Bush/Cheney regime who were castigated and repudiated by an electorate who spoke. No, the hunting is, instead, by the projected agent of 'change', Barack Obama. You expect there to be some difference between a man as candidate and a man governing; the shock comes when the man and message is the diametric opposite of that which he sold. And, in the sling of such politics, lies the life and fate of John Kiriakou."
"Marijuana Legalization More Popular Than Obama or Romney in Colorado." Once again, a policy that Americans increasingly support but that our politicians tell us is "not politically feasible". As with such overwhelmingly popular ideas as universal health care, we are told this can't be done because of "the political climate" - but isn't it long past time people immediately responded to such a claim by saying, "Are you telling me that most people in Congress are opposed to good policy and democracy?" (We know the actual answer to that question, but maybe we should be trying to force them to say it.)
"Coal Miner's Donor [...] The accounts of two sources who have worked in managerial positions at the firm, and a review of letters and memos to Murray employees, suggest that coercion may also explain Murray staffers' financial support for Romney. Murray, it turns out, has for years pressured salaried employees to give to the Murray Energy political action committee (PAC) and to Republican candidates chosen by the company. Internal documents show that company officials track who is and is not giving. The sources say that those who do not give are at risk of being demoted or missing out on bonuses, claims Murray denies." Telling them how to vote is also out there, but I won't be surprised if we start hearing about CEOs leaning over employee's shoulders to watch them fill out their ballots. (via) Of course, where that fails, it always helps if you "invest" in voting machines.
I generally love Charles Pierce, but I have to say I was puzzled and - honestly - somewhat offended - at an essay that blames me and not Obama for Obama's policy choices. I wasn't alone.
"Money & Public Purpose: Government is Not a Household: This second entry in the Money & Public Purpose series features Stephanie Kelton and Randy Wray debunking widely held misperceptions on the relationship of governments to the economy (for instance, that running surpluses is a good idea)."
Why It is Essential That Criminal Bankers are Prosecuted
Brad Friedman, "GOP voter registration scandal widens." Gosh, I wonder how a whole bunch of GOP operatives all got the idea to commit election fraud at once.
Digby: "If I could ask a question it would be about the recent revelations that the DEA is operating in Africa, ostensibly because "narco-terrorism" is threatening Europe. I have to wonder if Americans agree that's such an important national priority that their grandmothers must eat cat food (skin in the game!) so that the Europeans pay a little bit more for their cocaine and hash."
Dr. Cornel West, who took part in an extended dialog with BAR executive editor Glen Ford, and a panel discussion featuring Margaret Kimberley, Jemima Pierre, Richard Wolff, P. Sainaith, Anthony Monteiro and Marsha Coleman-Adebayo got together and had a talk.
You know, there's a reason why Atrios keeps calling George Osborne The Worst Person In The World. But then, he's an exemplar of a special kind of person - the kind who thinks forcing poverty on his country is a good idea. And if you think it's safe to run away to Britain, think again.
RIP: George McGovern: "That fall, I continued to volunteer with the McGovern campaign doing some door-to-door canvassing. At the time, I was also a member of the WKU ROTC department, on an ROTC scholarship so that made for some interesting discussions in and out of the classes. Election day that year was a cold, rainy day in Bowling Green and I stood outside a voting location from 7AM until 4PM (polls were open 6AM to 6PM local time). I remember this one young woman campaigning with me who stated that she and her parents were all voting for McGovern because 'Nixon had gone communist' by visiting 'Red' China (as it was commonly known in those days). By 5PM, I was at the McGovern headquarters in Bowling Green and watched the networks call Kentucky for Nixon at 5:01 local (Central Standard) time when we still had an hour of voting. About the only election consolation we had was in the US Senate race, Democrat Dee Huddleston defeated former Governor Louie B. Nunn by nearly the same margin in the state that Nixon had defeated McGovern. Small comfort that as I wound up getting drunk that evening. While George McGovern lost the Presidential race in 1972, his career encompassed so much more. One of the 'pre-obits' I read this past week when his condition was first announced stated that he was one of the last of the 'Prairie Populists.' He was a war hero, having been awarded a Distinguished Flying Cross during WWII, who championed peace. I was and am proud that I cast my first presidential vote for Senator McGovern."
75 Tube Stations in One Picture Quiz. Kinda fun - some are really obvious, some take thinking about, many are real groaners, and there are several I haven't worked out yet. (via) If you ever manage to work them out, I suppose you could play the game. Thanks to Moshe for the tip.
3:15 of kinky sex. Or maybe not.