Tag Archives | Obama Administration

What Goes Around Comes Around: The Karma Of Political Deception

Politicians follow laws or make their own but often don’t think that one of the oldest moral admonitions applies to them: the law of karma. That’s the one, seeped in Buddhist philosophy, but accepted by other religious traditions, that says ‘what goes around comes around.’

It’s a variant of the biblical injunction to do unto others what you want others to do unto you and the notion that for every action there’s a reaction.

The concept has many interpreters including this one: “Karma is not punishment or retribution but simply an extended expression or consequence of natural acts. Karma means ‘deed’ or ‘act’ and more broadly names the universal principle of cause and effect, action and reaction, that governs all life.”

Here’s President Obama committed to high tech warfare turning the skies into a shooting gallery. The idea of course is to precisely find and target enemies using super computers and image enhancement technologies to neutralize (i.e.… Read the rest

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How To Stay Off Obama’s ‘Kill List’

Disturbed by the Obama administration’s non-hesitation to assassinate U.S. citizens without due process? Free yourself from stress, just apply to be added to the official “Do Not Kill” list. Naked Capitalism on a fresh whitehouse.gov petition:

The New York Times reports that President Obama has created an official “kill list” that he uses to personally order the assassination of American citizens. Considering that the government already has a “Do Not Call” list and a “No Fly” list, we hereby request that the White House create a “Do Not Kill” list in which American citizens can sign up to avoid being put on the president’s “kill list” and therefore avoid being executed without indictment, judge, jury, trial or due process of law.

Total signatures so far: 4213 of 25,000 needed to get the White House to respond. Not bad, since one must have a whitehouse.gov account to sign the petition.

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Ralph Nader: President Obama, Where Are Your Lawyers? (Re: ‘Kill List’ Meetings)

Ralph Nader

Photo: Ragesoss (CC)

It’s been widely reported that President Obama’s top political adviser, David Axelrod, attended the Obama adminstration’s “kill list” meetings. Imagine if the names in this recent news report instead were President George W. Bush and Karl Rove … Ralph Nader writes on Nader.org:

The rule of law is rapidly breaking down at the top levels of our government. As officers of the court, we have sworn to “support the Constitution,” which clearly implies an affirmative commitment on our part.

Take the administrations of George W. Bush and Barack Obama. The conservative American Bar Association sent three white papers to President Bush describing his continual unconstitutional policies. Then and now civil liberties groups and a few law professors, such as the stalwart David Cole of Georgetown University and Jonathan Turley of George Washington University, have distinguished themselves in calling out both presidents for such violations and the necessity for enforcing the rule of law.

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NDAA Ruling: One Foot Off the Slippery Slope

Chris Hedges

Chris Hedges. Photo: Chris Hedges

Travis Kelly writes on AntiWar.com:

If the founding fathers were spinning in their graves like centrifuges over recent assaults on the Constitution, their RPMs slowed down a bit last Wednesday when U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest ruled that Section 1021 in the latest National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), allowing military detention of American citizens without due process, is unconstitutional.

The lawsuit was brought by veteran journalist Chris Hedges, with attorneys Carl Mayer and Bruce Afran doing the heavy lifting without compensation. None thought they had a chance to win, given the juggernaut of military and police-state abuses that have rolled over us in the decade since 9/11. But as Hedges said after the verdict, “A stunning and monumental victory … every once in a while the gods smile on the damned.”

The defendants, President Obama and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, had argued that this new NDAA merely codified what the panicked 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF) had spawned over the last decade: indefinite military detention, unwarranted searches and seizures, assassination, torture — only now it all could be employed on American soil, against American citizens, however or whenever the president and Pentagon saw fit…

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“Cognitive Infiltration” of Conspiracy Groups: White House Official Cass Sunstein Confronted (Video)

Via We Are Change:

“I may agree with some of the things I’ve written, but I’m not exactly sure. I’m just going to do what my boss wants me to do.” —Cass Sunstein

In a rare public appearance, Obama administration official Cass Sunstein gave a lecture at NYU Law School, prompting Luke Rudkowski of We Are Change to attend. Watch as Luke confronts Sunstein multiple times on an academic paper he co-authored back in 2008 entitled “Conspiracy Theories” in which he called for cognitive infiltration of conspiracy groups by the government.

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The White House Offers Rare Defense of Drone Attacks

John BrennanJosn Gerstein writes on the Politico:

President Barack Obama’s top counterterrorism adviser offered a rare public defense Sunday of the use of armed drones to target terrorism suspects – a technique widely discussed by national security experts outside government and by human rights activists, but almost always treated as secret by U.S. officials.

“Drones, the remotely piloted vehicles, [are] a tremendously capable tool to use against the terrorist abroad. It has capability to monitor their activities. It provides a good insight to our intelligence analysts and operators in terms of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. It has the capability of carrying out strikes as well,” Deputy National Security Adviser John Brennan said on “Fox News Sunday.”

In response to a question about a recent decision by Obama to give the Central Intelligence Agency and the military broader authority to carry out drone strikes in Yemen, Brennan emphasized that such strikes are always done with approval of the countries where they take place, though he stopped short of saying that local authorities had advance notice of each specific strike.

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President Obama’s Top Official (In Charge of Drug Control Policy) Conflates Hemp with Marijuana

Gil KerlikowskeOnce again, Gil Kerlikowske makes it a point to fulfill his job description as head propagandist of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Reports Stephen C. Webster on the RAW Story:

In a recent response to a White House petition, President Barack Obama’s drug czar warned of danger in the domestic production of industrial hemp, drawing a stunned reaction from the petition’s author, who told Raw Story on Wednesday that it was “like getting hit in the head with a hammer.”

The claim by former Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske, his second response to a marijuana-related White House petition, is not surprising as it reflects current U.S. policy toward marijuana. It is, however, simply not true that THC in hemp poses any sort of potential for abuse, as it is impossible to become “high” from ingesting the plant.

“America’s farmers deserve our Nation’s help and support to ensure rural America’s prosperity and vitality,” he wrote.

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Why Is It Hard to Believe President Obama Would Want a Journalist in Prison?

PrisonIt isn’t for me. Peter Hart writes on the FAIR Blog:

Jeremy Scahill’s piece at the Nation website (“Why Is President Obama Keeping a Journalist in Prison in Yemen?”, 3/13/12) about imprisoned Yemeni journalist Abdulelah Haider Shaye is riveting and deeply reported. But to Mother Jones blogger Kevin Drum, the story doesn’t quite add up … because Barack Obama seems like a decent guy.

As Scahill reports, Shaye has “risked his life to travel to areas controlled by Al-Qaeda and to interview its leaders.” He argues that this reporting has not exactly won him friends in the U.S. or Yemeni governments:

His collision course with the U.S. government appears to have been set in December 2009. On December 17, the Yemeni government announced that it had conducted a series of strikes against an Al-Qaeda training camp in the village of al Majala in Yemen’s southern Abyan province, killing a number of Al-Qaeda militants.

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