Archive for the ‘Injustice’ Category

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Five Sentenced to Death in Iran for Post Election Protests

In Foreign Affairs,human rights,Injustice,Iranian election aftermath on November 17, 2009 by Editor Z

A reminder that well our attention may be diverted, the autocratic regime in Iran is not letting up.

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) – Iran has sentenced five people to death over the unrest that followed the country’s disputed June presidential election, state television reported Tuesday.

At least three others caught up in the turmoil have received death sentences previously.

Iran began a mass trial in August of prominent opposition figures and activists, accusing them of a range of charges from rioting to spying and plotting what authorities have called a “soft revolution” to topple the country’s Islamic rulers.

The opposition led massive street protests and clashed with security forces in the weeks following the disputed June 12 presidential election. The opposition claimed fraud after election authorities declared President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad the winner of a second term and their anger unleashed the most serious internal unrest in Iran in the 30 years since the Islamic Revolution.

A Justice Department statement said the five sentenced to death were members of “terrorist and armed opposition groups,” state television reported. The statement said the courts have sentenced a total of 89 defendants since the process began and 81 of them got prison terms ranging from six months up to 15 years.

“So far, 89 of defendants were tried and based on their cases, death sentences were issued for five of them,” the statement said.

It said the 81 people sentenced to prison terms were charged with a range of offenses from security violations, agitating against the Islamic Republic, violating law and order, damaging public and private property, and assaulting civilians and security forces.


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Life on the Rez

In Injustice,Native Americans,television on September 21, 2009 by Editor Z

Heart wrenching 2007 report on life on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.



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Tortured Iranian Prisoner Kills Himself

In Foreign Affairs,human rights,Injustice,Iranian election aftermath on August 31, 2009 by Editor Z

Though the situation in the past month or two has been eclipsed by other events, the graphic video above (H/T:Andrew Sullivan) as an ireport for CNN, shows the bloodied father in the aftermath of his young son’s suicide who upon being released from prison leaped off a bridge to his death. Apparently the deceased had been jailed for participating in post-election protests and well in prison had endured rape and torture at the hands of his captors.

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Tom Ridge Says Bush May Have Raised Terror Alert out of Politics

In Bush/Cheney Administration,Injustice,war on terror,War on the rational/ logic on August 20, 2009 by Editor Z

All those who believed that the Bush/Cheney White House at least in the two or three years following the horrendous attacks and in the wake of the carnage of 9/11, used the newly established U.S Department of Homeland Security to exploit fear for political gain, tragically may have been all too correct. That is if the first Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge, is to be believed in his forthcoming book.

The Huffington Post via U.S News and World Report says that in his upcoming book, Ridge will allege amongst other matters, that despite heading the Department formed to monitor and combat terrorist threats both on and in the United States of America, he was barred from attending National Security Council meetings, was kept out of the loop on FBI activities and findings, and just before the 2004 Presidential Elections the administration had exerted pressure on Ridge to up the threat level for reasons he now ascribes to politics rather then intelligence about any attacks.

According to the article Ridge was so incensed he thought it was worth resigning over and perhaps that is why he did not serve in a second Bush/Cheney administration. Despite this when questions were raised at the time, Ridge denied politics had anything to do with raising the threat level. It is great he is making those revelations now, but if an administration was so craven to use the instruments of National Security for political gain and this is in fact true, Ridge should have resigned right away and informed the public that the administration screamed terrorist attack not based on national security but political calculation. Personally, in those days I would have thought an allegation such as that was far fetched, but an official like Ridge coming out and exposing the truth (again if its true and not just an attempt to hock books), it would have given such claims at least some credence, and maybe saved some national dignity in the process.

But what is painfully obvious now, the hype leading up to the Iraq War if not made so by the torture memos, excessive secrecy, domestic spying, or accusing political rivals of wanting to erode this nation’s strength; is that the Bush/Cheney’s would take anything whether it be profound,non-existent, even contrary to reason, against the interests of their own political party, the nation’s welfare, prosperity, and even the lives of thousands of men and women to further their agenda and consolidate power. In the wake of all these other allegations of legally questionable, immoral, and even outright illegal conduct by the now previous administration this hardly seems like a surprise. But it is just further proof that for eight years that we had a government that cast aside an notion of accountability, proof, or the old notion that “Politics stops at the water’s edge”.

Still these statements if true, would show that even a national tragedy which left in its wake debris carnage, and thousands slaughtered; the Bush/Cheney administration perceived it as an issue just as ripe for political exploitation and demagoguery as tax cuts, spending, and abortion are in a typical election year. Where most Americans saw tragedy, bloodshed, peril, and the grief of losing someone under such violent circumstances; the Bush/ Cheney white house saw little more then a political issue to bludgeon opponents, dissent, and anyone who questioned their wisdom with, and as an opportunity to radically shift the apparatus and values of our government and country in a more authoritarian direction, while keeping those charged with our safety and from true danger uninformed and possibly the United States vulnerable to such an attack.

Now you can call that mindset many things; opportunistic, gloom and doom; but you can’t call it the accountable, honest, prudent, dignified, or effective conduct of a government of liberty loving people. Too bad we didn’t have all the people yelling about threats to our freedom regarding health care reform there when liberty was really under attack in an area where the government has great power and can do the most damage.

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Mexico Bound

In economics/money,health,Injustice on August 15, 2009 by Editor Z

As the health care reform debate rages on, a common refrain from conservatives is “We have the best health care in the world” and that people come around the globe seeking medical care in the United States.

This is most likely for certain procedures, due to our high quality of medical technology and doctors. However our health delivery system as crafted by the insurance companies remains low quality. And for those who come from Foreign countries to seek an operation in the United States, TPM reports that the staggering cost of medical care in the United States is forcing some to seek medical care in other countries such as Mexico.

With Washington bickering over how to reform the system and contain its spiraling costs, many Americans like Ritz simply head to Mexico to get care they can afford.

The total number making the trip is unclear. But a recent study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research estimated that nearly 1 million people from California alone seek medical, dental or prescription services in Mexico each year.

Some making the trek have little or no medical coverage. Others like Ritz are on fixed incomes and want to avoid so-called co-pays and deductibles charged by U.S. insurers on top of policies that routinely cost from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand each month.

“The very wealthy can afford whatever they want, the very poor get it through aid, but the working and the middle-class have to struggle to pay insurance,” said Ritz, who worked as a police officer in Chicago for 28 years.


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Free Maziar Bahari

In blogs,Foreign Affairs,human rights,Injustice,Iranian election aftermath,media on August 14, 2009 by Editor Z

Last night on the Rachel Maddow Show, I heard about Newsweek Iranian correspondent Maziar Bahari , who has been held prisoner by the government in Iran, in the wake of the intensity and disputes of that country’s Presidential election.

In the past he his coverage has been praised by the Iranian government who has given him clearance to do his job. But since June 21, he has been held by the government, who has alleged he presented coverage aimed at undermining the government in a plot to remove the government there from power.

By all accounts, he sounds like a journalist who reported objectively and is now being held (and even forced to give a false confession) all because he was merely reporting the facts and doing his job.

Sign this petition that action be taken to free Maziar Bahari now.

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Another Gerald Ford Assasin to be Freed?

In assasination,Crime,Injustice,U.S History on August 6, 2009 by Editor Z


Here is what looks to be a fairly recent interview about the assassination attempt with Lynette Squeaky Fromme, the woman about to be released from prison.

Lynette Squeaky Fromme, one of the closest and most devout members of Charles Manson’s ‘family’ and who in 1975 aimed a pistol and attempted to assassinate then President Gerald R Ford could be paroled as soon as this month. This as the fortieth anniversary of the infamous Tate-Labianca murders approaches.

(CNN) — The president she once pointed a gun at has been dead for nearly three years, and her longtime idol and leader, Charles Manson, remains in prison.

However, Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme is about to get her first taste of real freedom in more than three decades.

According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Fromme, now 60, is set to be released on parole August 16.

Fromme is housed at Federal Medical Center Carswell in Fort Worth, Texas.

For years, she was one of Manson’s few remaining followers, as many other “Manson Family” members have shunned him. A prison spokeswoman would not say whether Fromme continues to correspond with Manson.

Fromme was convicted in 1975 of pointing a gun at then-President Gerald Ford in Sacramento, California. Secret Service agents prevented her from firing, but the gun was later found to have no bullet in the chamber, although it contained a clip of ammunition.

Personally I think this woman, even if she is now 60 years old should remain in prison. At one point during her prison tenure she supposedly assaulted a fellow prisoner with a claw hammer and in 1987 even escaped from prison when she is alleged to have heard a rumor that Manson was supposedly dying of Cancer. She has lavished praise on this monster who was her former master and was (and perhaps still is) m clearly infatuated with him. Not to mention she almost killed a U.S president, and if someone is so irrational and blinded by hate and malice they are willing to even attempt to gun down a head of state of the most powerful nation in the world, ensconced by a phalanx of secret service men, body guards, and reporters; what makes one think that anyone this ruthless would hesitate at all to kill any other person of less prestige?

Of all the former apostles of Charles Manson, she according to her statements in the past has been if not the one of the most devout and likely least remorseful. There are a host of other Manson family members in jail, who are responsible for the heinous Tate-Labianca murders. Many of them have expressed remorse, one even has Cancer; and although I am opposed to their release at least they have expressed remorse and have shown some signs they have reformed themselves.

Fromme was sentenced to life in prison and in this case with some who showcases such a dangerous history and a penchant for histrionics of a violent and erratic nature, a life sentence should be just that.

But Fromme was not the only assassin of President Ford. In 1975, another woman by the name of Sara Jane Moore actually fired upon the President, but luckily missed him. She too was recently paroled too.

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