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Saturday News: Trump’s Bat****-Crazy Response to Egypt Terror Attack; Trump vs....

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by Lowell Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Saturday, November 25. 235 Killed in Attack on Sufi Mosque...

Who Is The Enemy?

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We watch the desperate citizens of Tunisia and Egypt demonstrate successfully against their resident dictators, and hope their joy is fulfilled, even as oppressed people under neighboring tyrants try to emulate them, and are slaughtered by the firepower of their own Establishments.  We have seen Greek workers and pensioners take to the streets, and even staid Englishmen and women in the UK rally against tax-cheating corporations, and against austerity programs which would be unnecessary had the corporations paid their taxes. We hear about food riots and the rising cost of food, and the threat of hyper-inflation.

Meanwhile, right here at home, we see the betrayed workers in Wisconsin fighting their ruthless Governor.  We worry about intractable unemployment and irrational anti-immigrant laws, and the steady increase in political violence, of which the Tucson shootings are only the latest example. We hear Representative Jackie Speier (D,CA) on the floor of Congress speaking eloquently against the Republican war on women.  We sign petitions against attacks on Social Security, the environment, the thievery of Wall Street, and the opening of the floodgates of corporate political spending due to the Citizens United decision. Does it not strike you that all of these battles have something in common?  That they are not isolated, local incidents, each with its own, individual backstory and provenance?

UPDATE: See above for video from Al Jazeera on revolution suppression in Libya tonight. The tyrant appears to be following the classic doctrine of using overwhelming force against the opposition.  

Does GOP Only Care About Freedom When It’s For Corporations?

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Michele BachmannAt this week's Conservative Political Action Conference, sponsored by a who's who of front groups for billionaires & big polluters, there's been plenty of talk of freeing billionaires from taxes and freeing polluters from laws that keep our air & water clean.

But freedom for Egyptians? As the Washington Post reports, most of CPAC's speakers have been strangely silent - and the loudest voice said America should've done less to encourage the Egyptian revolution:

[F]or the most part, they had little to say about the nation's policy toward Egypt, whether to praise the demonstrators whose protests forced President Hosni Mubarak to step down, or to offer the principles that should guide U.S. policy as the American and Israeli ally takes the next steps toward democracy.

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney didn't mention Egypt at all in his speech. Nor did Sen. John Thune (S.D.), although his text included a line that said, "Let's stand with those around the world who are risking their lives for freedom." Former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty made a glancing reference, criticizing Obama as appeasing U.S. adversaries, including "Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood."

It was left to Rep. Ron Paul (Tex.) to step into the vacuum. The libertarian conservative, who drew an enthusiastic audience of supporters, offered a contrarian view. In a party that has championed the spread of freedom as part of its recent foreign policy and whose leaders helped keep Mubarak in power for decades in the name of stability in the Middle East, Paul stood out as a dissenter.

Saying he disagrees with the idea that the United States has "a moral responsibility to spread our goodness around the world," Paul added to cheers from the crowd, "We need to do a lot less a lot sooner, not only in Egypt but around the world."

The lack of Egypt talk also reveals a major shortcoming of 2011's Tea Party-dominated Republican Party: Today's GOP leaders are foreign policy lightweights. Where are the GOP's Jim Webbs? The Tom Perriellos? The Hillary Clintons? Instead, we get eccentric conspiracy theories from Ron Paul and anti-technology nuttery from Michele Bachmann.

All About Egypt in 20 seconds

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According to the sage pundits, the Revolution in Egypt is "complicated," and the American President must "walk a fine line" and be mindful of American national security.... so, maybe, therefore, democracy isn't such a good idea for Egypt right now. But they are wrong. Out of the mouths of bebes comes a simple, straightforward explanation of what's going on in ancient Egypt. Here is a video from salon.com today, 9 February. I am told the young toddler first explained it all to her mother in Japanese, and then to her father in English, which you see below. Puts the pundits to shame.

“Be On The Side Of History”

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Eugene Robinson, op-ed columnist at The Washington Post spoke at the February breakfast meeting of the Northern Virginia Democratic Business Council at the Fairview Marriott on 4 February. He was preceded by Congressman Jim Moran (D,VA-8) who gave the attentive group an impassioned short talk about the Egyptian Revolution. Both he and Mr. Robinson were in basic agreement on what should be America's stance on the ongoing events in that Revolution: "Be on the side of history." It is important that America "stop being associated with sclerotic authoritarian" regimes, especially in the Middle East, said Mr. Robinson.  In his opinion President Barak Obama has handled the situation well, because he is taking the "long view," which means that the risk involved in encouraging a transition from Mubarak to a democratic system---- and there is risk, since we cannot control the final result---- is more than offset long-term by standing for what we say we honor: the right of every people to live free

“We’ve Agreed Not to Vandalize”

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The most honest and direct coverage of the continuing demonstrations in Egypt against the Mubarak regime continues to be that of Al-Jezeera in English. I find it striking that the protests have had such staying power, that the women are joining---- that means this is a serious revolution, when the mothers come out on the streets, as they did in Eastern Europe, creating the fall of Communism in the satellite states of the Soviet Union, and even in Russia itself, bringing about the final end of  Communist control. It is also remarkable that the military have not either struck a hard blow against the demonstrators---- nor have they joined them overtly.

In the video you will hear from some of the demonstrators. Revolutions go through stages; the opening scenarios almost always are not violent, and they are often crushed by The Establishment, which imagines that using overwhelming force will end the matter, and sometimes that seems to work, for a while.... but it is a postponement, not a victory for The Establishment. The demonstrators in Egypt now seem to have little organization, and are hoping that their very peacefulness and persistence will get rid of their hated overlord. They want the outside world to help them. Here is the video: