Wednesday, September 27, 2006

If You've Got It Flaunt It.......

While there may be various motives for publicizing your arsenal, the latest from Russian Strategic Rocket Forces is interesting to say the least. My previous info from the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists gives differnet numbers but whatever it is seems like more than enough for general world destruction.


Turning Back the Clock to ....the Pliocene?


A new NASA study on climate change indicates the Earth is on the verge of global temperatures not seen since the Pliocene era 1,000,000 years ago. Based on the above map Paleo-conservatives may want to ditch the Florida condo before it's too late.

Meanwhile in another distrubed Earth story a "mud volcano", possibly started by human gas drilling activities may last a hundred years or more. So far the boiling mud has consumed half a dozen villages and 20 factories since its eruption in May.


Sunday, September 24, 2006

Nukes and Obscurantism


Have you ever wondered how many nukes there are in the whole world? An article in The Bulletin of The Atomic Scientists attempts to answer this almost existentialist question.The number is about 27,000, of which 12,500 are operational. As it turns out 97% are in the hands of Russia and the United States.

A new wrinkle is the Bush administration's effort to cover up the U.S. history of the arsenal. These numbers of course are well known to our adversaries so from whom are they being hidden? The only answer can be the the people of this country. The creation of a "memory hole" only benefits the state in its effort to stifle discussion of security and freedom. No knowledge no argument. Welcome to the funhouse.

fun house COLOR.gif

Friday, September 22, 2006

Real Threats

While the U.S. frets over the possibility of Iranian nukes leftover nightmares from the cold war persist.


One issue is accidental launch of nuclear weapons, a subject visited by Pavel Podvig in the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces' blog. Here are some their concerns:

"There are several scenarios that can lead to an unintended launch of nuclear-armed missiles. It can be an unauthorized launch of a missile or a group of missiles (e.g. missile regiment or a submarine), a malfunction of a command and control system component that triggers missile launch, or an authorized launch in response to a warning provided by the early-warning system."

Another new problem is the American idea to put conventional warheads on ballistic missiles as part of the "war on terrorism". Concerns with this include the idea that countries will not be able to differentiate between nuke carrying missiles and the conventional warheads leading to nuclear catastrophe .Donald Rumsfeld is a big proponent of this idea which is not so far being enthusiastcally endorsed by other nuclear powers.

"Tell me what keeps you up at night and I'll tell you why it should."

Fashion Central "Talk Show"

Monday, September 18, 2006

The Republican Myth of Security


Its hard for to me to imagine how the administration keeps its grip on the American people in terms of security. Lies on lies to convince us somehow we are better off with their leadership (or lack of it). Recent examples include the report of the Physicians for Social Responsibilty on the consequences of nuclear attack that concludes that nothing has been has been done to make us safer in the last five years in spite of the invocation of "mushroom clouds" by our local warmongers.

Another aspect is the continual degradation of our armed forces as evidenced by recruiting difficulties, well documented by Nick Turse in "Coaxing the Unwilling" in Asia Times Online's great article. We essentially have a mercenary force increasingly made up of fugitives from justice, education, and "normal American values". How these guys keep getting re-elected is amazing in itself. I'm looking for some foreign election monitors to save the next fraud of an election.Either that or a new place to live.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Al-Anbar Won or Lost, the Caliphate

The recent observance of "Patriots' Day" raises uncomfortable questions about what the U.S. will or won't accomplish in the "War on Terror". A good example of what is meant by victory or democracy can be seen in news about Al-Anbar province. Is it lost due to too few troops or a failure to grasp basic counter-insurgency techniques. A recent report from Marine intelligence suggests a lack of resources among other things. On the other hand a basic distrust of Iraqis perhaps has led to failure as well .

Another hitherto unthinkable thought might be what happens if an Islamic Caliphate were to be established. Such a possiblity was raised in Thomas Ricks' otherwise thoughtful "Fiasco". Here he postulated a "worst case " scenario of a charasmatic Islamic leader overthrowing the present nonrepresentative governments of the Arabic MidEast and establishing a state from north Africa to Iraq. As a precedent he cited Saladin, the greatest hero of the Islamic world at the time of the crusades. It's time to start thinking outside of the box. Here might be a place to start.


Sunday, September 10, 2006

A Grand Wisconsin Tradition

Yesterday I had the pleasure of spending an inspiring afternoon at a uniquely Wisconsin event, Fighting Bob Fest. Approximately 4,000 people with an interest in progressive causes converged on the Sauk County fairground in Baraboo WI to spend the the day taking inspiration from an amazing roster of speakers including Amy Goodman of Democracy Now , Jim Hightower , Sen. Tom Harkin, John Stauber , and Greg Palast .


Cheney and Rove put in a surprise appearance,


and a great time was had by all.


Sunday, September 03, 2006

Coming to a Library Near You


Saparmurat Niyazov has a book he'd like you to read and it might be coming to your library.A self -help book of sorts he describes how to make your world a better place. Mr. Niyazov is the President of Turkmenistan (for life if he has any say in this). Typical of Central Asian leaders, he is an unreconstructed Stalinist with Central Asian characteristics who has played his cards between Russia and the U.S. fairly well. Make no mistake if you live there you have to be careful.

A Big Thank You

I spent a splendid evening last Thursday courtesy of the congenial and stimulating folks at the Minneapolis chapter of Drinking Liberally. The Twin Cities is fortunate to have such a vibrant blogging community on the Left.Many interesting ideas came up and gives me added inspiration for this humble blog. May they and their causes prevail.

thank you.jpg Bolshoye Spaseebo!