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Art Threat: Skinny Puppy bills US military for music use in torture

The U.S. military is using a Vancouver band’s music to torture prisoners at Guantanamo Bay — and the artists are working to make sure they pay for it.

Electro-industrial act Skinny Puppy has learned through a former guard at Gitmo that inmates would be drowned in their unsettling sounds for up to twelve hours at a time — or until they literally crapped their pants.

Skinny Puppy co-founder cEvin Key spoke to CBC’s As It Happens about the situation, which the band is strongly opposed to. They plan on sending the American government a bill for $666,000 — an (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Canada must arrest Dick Cheney for torture, war crimes: Lawyers

A group of lawyers has asked Canada to arrest former US Vice President Dick Cheney for torture and war crimes when he visits Toronto later this week.

The post Canada must arrest Dick Cheney for torture, war crimes: Lawyers appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Dead Wild Roses: Guantánamo Bay: The Hunger Strikes

Shutdown this, markets crashing that. Hey, if the Americans want to self-destruct their country maybe they should start with Guantanamo Bay.

Filed under: Politics Tagged: Force Feeding, Guantanamo Bay, Human Rights, Hunger Strikes, Institutional Evil., Torture

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Why should CSIS have all the fun?

We learned recently that the policy framework which allows CSIS to trade in information that might be the result of torture, or might lead to torture, or both, was actually a collaborative effort involving several federal agencies and departments. Now we have confirmation that CSEC is playing by the same rules.

The Harper government has quietly given Canada’s electronic eavesdropping agency approval to exchange information with foreign partners even when it may put someone at risk of torture.

Communications Security Establishment Canada is following a federal policy on the risks of ill-treatment when sharing information with other countries, says Ryan (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Why Not Just Waterboard Them?

One of the dirty little tricks American interrogator/torturers adopted during the War on Terror has made it to the homeland.  It is subjecting the prisoner to the prolonged stress of intense cold.   That, according to lawyers, is a method being used against hunger-striking prisoners by California prison guards.

Prison guards are trying to break a hunger strike involving thousands of prisoners in California by blasting cells with cold air, confiscating legal documents and, in one case, banning lawyers, according to legal representatives and relatives.

Authorities have taken the action, it is alleged, in retaliation for a strike which (Read more…)

Peace, order and good government, eh?: A group effort

A year ago last March, I took Vic Toews to task for granting CSIS the authority to trade in information derived from torture. In that post, I described a scenario in which the torture of one, possibily innocent, person of interest could easily lead to the torture of additional, possibly innocent, persons of interest. And all that could happen on the authority of the CSIS Director or a deputy minister and with no accountability.

It turns out that Toews didn’t dream up that policy all on his own.

Canada’s highly secretive electronic eavesdropping agency helped develop a federal directive that (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Forced Feeding At Guantanimo

I really questioned whether I should put the following video on my blog, so graphic is it in its depiction of the forced feeding that 40 of the detainees in Guantanimo are currently being subjected to. Rapper Mos Def volunteered to undergo the procedure, for purposes that I think will become obvious if you have the stomach to watch it. Frankly, I had to look away twice.

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Cowichan Conversations: War Crimes Attorney Says He Will Get George W. Bush

Richard Hughes Political Blogger

The ‘Truth Seeker’ is revealing legal efforts to arrest and prosecute George W. Bush and Barack Obama for illegal wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Further charges for illegal surveillance, war crimes including torture, genocide, drone attacks world wide are being pursued against President Obama as well.

It is unlikely that any country or court would arrest a sitting president but the fact that George Bush has been advised not to leave the US is noteworthy.

Rumours state that in 2006 Bush bought very large land holdings in Paraguay, South America.

This video from RT-Russian Television may (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: They ‘Will Lie, Trick, and Deceive’: Jailed CIA Whistleblower’s Warns Edward Snowden

Richard Hub Hughes-Political Blogger

It is becoming hard to keep track of all the ‘Whistleblowers’ and the tunes that they are whistling. It is clear that many countries spy, snoop and infiltrate. It has been going on for centuries but accelerated during World War 2 and the Cold War that followed.

What seems to have changed is the surveillance over citizens on such a widespread level. Our emails, and phone calls are being systematically captured and stored on massive computers. Our media has been corporatized with fewer and fewer owners resulting in a homogenized and predictable product that renders much (Read more…)

Flanagan’s flop reveals deeper truth about the nature of hypocrisy in Canada

I am not writing this blog post with the idea that the right to free speech, or expression is without limit. Tom Flanagan proves that in exercising that right, the social consequences can be swifter and less judicious than any of the hate speech crimes we have on the books in Canada.

Nor am I writing to defend Mr. Flanagan’s comments. Rather, I want to point out what I think the reaction to his comments reveal about the deep hypocrisy at work in our social body politic (if I may be permitted to use such an awkward formation).

On

. . . → Read More: Flanagan’s flop reveals deeper truth about the nature of hypocrisy in Canada

Politics and Entertainment: Zero Dark Thirty Leaves Plenty of Space for Viewer’s Moral Judgment

Spoiler alert: The U.S. Navy SEALS murder Osama Bin Laden and several others in his Pakistani compound without mercy and with vengeful malice. Most of the controversy swirling round the film revolves around whether the filmmaker, Kathryn Bigelow – positioned as auteur by most commentators –  endorses torture or  whether the film’s narrative raises the moral issue of torture for contemplation. There is, in my reading,  no overt moral position offered by the film on torture or even the morality of CIA procedures in general.  Many commentators have unwittingly bemoaned this absence or taken it as a tacit moral endorsement of torture (Read more…)

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: The Sarcastic Cyborg Debriefs

[recording starts] Is this thing on? Seriously. Is it on? I’m not getting any neural feedback. You humans are so odd. You are human aren’t you? Why don’t you just implant a microphone in your scull — there’s lots of … Continue reading →

The Canadian Progressive: Human Rights Watch World Report 2013 (VIDEO)

Video available on YouTube The Canadian Progressive recommends: Human Rights Watch: Challenges for Rights After Arab Spring Canada’s Human Rights Reputation is Fast Becoming a Myth Cornel West Is Upset Obama Was Sworn In On Martin Luther King’s Bible U.S. pressuring Bradley Manning to implicate Julian Assange (VIDEO) The Young Turks’ Cenk Uygur On Obama’s READ MORE

The Canadian Progressive: Human Rights Watch: Challenges for Rights After Arab Spring

The willingness of new governments to respect rights will determine whether those uprisings give birth to genuine democracy or simply spawn authoritarianism in new forms.

The Canadian Progressive: CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou: Torture was official US policy

Via YouTube: Former CIA agent John Kiriakou was sentenced to 30 months in prison for revealing the identity of a covert officer to a reporter. But originally he was pending charges on the violating the espionage act. Kiriakou is the first CIA official to publicly confirm the use of waterboarding and other tactics he describes READ MORE

Art Threat: On efficacy and ideology: Zero Dark Thirty and the ethical justification of torture

“The tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the ‘state of emergency’ in which we live is not the exception but the rule.” -Walter Benjamin

Kathryn Bigelow’s film Zero Dark Thirty was met with both large audiences and waves of criticism for how the film depicted, and seemingly endorsed, the use of torture. While it’s not surprising that a film about the War on Terror and the assassination of Osama Bin Laden has provoked controversy, what is rather troubling is that the majority of critics have chosen to focus their critique on the film’s questionable suggestion that information obtained (Read more…)

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM - A Blog by Donna Thomson: Am I An Abuser?

All this talk of torture in my last post got me wondering about the most awful times of pain and suffering in our own Nicholas’ life.

When Nick was small, he had a surgical procedure to correct gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD.  The procedure was called an ‘open full-wrap fundoplication’.  Sometimes words like water-boarding or enhanced interrogation techniques do not sound so bad if you haven’t witnessed them first-hand.  The same goes for an open fundoplication.

From my book “The Four Walls of My Freedom“, here is a reminiscence of Nicholas returning from the operating room after this

. . . → Read More: THE CAREGIVERS’ LIVING ROOM – A Blog by Donna Thomson: Am I An Abuser?

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM - A Blog by Donna Thomson: Torture, The Movies and the Politics of Caregiving

A couple of nights ago, my husband Jim and I went to the movies.  We saw Kathryn Bigelow’s “Zero Dark Thirty” – a film already infamous for its portrayal of torture as a measure to ensure post 9/11 homeland security and as a tool to locate and eliminate Osama Bin Laden.

It’s a good film, but what’s it got to do with issues of caregiving in the western world?

Well, yesterday, I drove through a snowstorm to visit my Mom who has not been well and who needed a couple of loving visitors (me and my sister) who would roll

. . . → Read More: THE CAREGIVERS’ LIVING ROOM – A Blog by Donna Thomson: Torture, The Movies and the Politics of Caregiving

Putting lipstick on the PIIGS: the health of modern macroeconomics

Ok, so some of the best economists, trained at elite institutions, working for the pinnacle of the of the financial world got it wrong, very wrong. How wrong? Just go ask a Greek citizen. But, of course, we all knew that just by reading the headlines coming out of Greece over the last couple of years. We also knew this because most of the best elite trained economists thought everything was doing swimmingly back in 2006 early 2007.

Why? because they assumed rational expectations and that their models were correct. And when, after the crisis

. . . → Read More: Putting lipstick on the PIIGS: the health of modern macroeconomics

drive-by planet: Supermax hellholes: solitary confinement in US prisons

The US has the highest documented incarceration rate in the world. It breaks down to about 754 per 100,000 (2009 figures). By way of comparison Canada had 117 per 100,000 (as of 2008), Australia 133 per 100,000 (as of 2010) and Japan 59 per 100,000.

According to 2010 figures put out by the US Bureau of Justice Statistics, a total of 7,225,800 adults were listed as under correctional supervision (probation, parole, or in prison) – that’s close to the population of Israel or even Switzerland.

In some states prison overcrowding is a serious problem. Prisons in California with a capacity

. . . → Read More: drive-by planet: Supermax hellholes: solitary confinement in US prisons

Dead Wild Roses: America’s Shame – Guantanamo Bay

We have not written on America’s imperial adventures for awhile here at DWR. Constant examination of the antithesis of our civilization lays bare the soul, to touch the carefully crafted web we ensconce ourselves in and shake it till the dirty bitter truths rupture forth wearies the heart and mind. To see things as they are, as Buchan does, empties the carefully nurtured vessels of hope and replaces it with despair and bitterness:

“You think that a wall as solid as the earth separates civilization from barbarism. I tell you the division is a thread, a sheet

. . . → Read More: Dead Wild Roses: America’s Shame – Guantanamo Bay

Dead Wild Roses: Torture is Great – More Positive Republican PR

I’m not a fan of all of Jessie Ventura’s politics, but he makes a strong case against the use of torture while explaining to the designated right-wing nut on the View how and why its wrong.

Let’s open up the discussion. When, if ever, is torture permissible? Leave your opinion in the comments.

 

Filed under: Ethics, Politics Tagged: Debate, Jesse Ventura, Republican “values”, Torture

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Oh look. Security certificates are in the news again.

I wonder if the Harper government has really thought this one through.

A security certificate issued against Hassan Almrei was thrown out by Federal Court Justice Richard Mosley in December of 2009. Almrei filed a civil suit against the government and asked for a summary judgement on the basis that Mosley’s ruling was sufficient to make his case. Lawyers for the federal government argued that Mosley’s ruling had nothing to do with any claim for damages and that the matter should be subject to a full trial. An Ontario Superior Court ruled with the feds and the matter is now

. . . → Read More: Peace, order and good government, eh?: Oh look. Security certificates are in the news again.

ParliamANT Hill: Torture directives from Anttawa ‘immoral,’ NDP says

Inspired by this headline: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/08/28/pol-cp-torture-opposition.html

Montreal Simon: Harperland and the Sad Days of August

I hate this time of the year. When you wish summer would go on forever eh?

But you know it will soon be over.

And as David Frum tweeted recently "Few things on earth are sadder than the last week of a Canadian August."Read more »