This blog is the continuation of The Stark Raving Viking blog. The author of all the posts here is Steven G. Erickson a.k.a blogger Vikingas. Keywords: Human Rights Watch China USA World Civil Judicial prosecutorial attorney Judge misconduct brutality police action Connecticut Politics State Martial Law US Constitution
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Paul Craig Roberts' Message and Motivation
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is an older man. He is an insider, probably before the Reagan years. His motivation isn't money, to enrich friends, or to keep from being prosecuted. That is unlike most insiders who have a message that they want to force on us. Dr. Roberts wants to warn us, because he realizes his time might be short, knows he's risking his life and family's well being talking candidly, and seems to want to leave something behind to better humanity.
That is why the below, short message, should be more widely distributed.
What does the world think? Obama has been using air strikes and drones against civilians in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, and probably Somalia. In his March 28 speech, Obama justified his air strikes against Libya on the grounds that the embattled ruler, Gadhafi, was using air strikes to put down a rebellion.
Gadhafi has been a black hat for as long as I can remember. If we believe the adage that "where there is smoke there is fire," Gadhafi is probably not a nice fellow. However, there is no doubt whatsoever that the current US president and the predecessor Bush/Cheney regime have murdered many times more people in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia than Gadhafi has murdered in Libya.
Moreover, Gadhafi is putting down a rebellion against state authority as presently constituted, but Obama and Bush/Cheney initiated wars of aggression based entirely on lies and deception.
Yet Gadhafi is being demonized, and Bush/Cheney/Obama are sitting on their high horse draped in cloaks of morality. Obama described himself as saving Libyans from violence while Obama himself murders Afghans, Pakistanis, and whomever else.
Indeed, the Obama regime has been torturing a US soldier, Bradley Manning, for having a moral conscience. America has degenerated to the point where having a moral conscience is evidence of anti-Americanism and "terrorist activity."
The Bush/Cheney/Obama wars of naked aggression have bankrupted America. Joseph Stiglitz, former chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers, concluded that the money wasted on the Iraq war could have been used to fix America's Social Security problem for half a century. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/feb/28/iraq.afghanistan
Instead, the money was used to boost the obscene profits of the armament industry.
The obscene wars of aggression, the obscene profits of the offshoring corporations, and the obscene bailouts of the rich financial gangsters have left the American public with annual budget deficits of approximately $1.5 trillion. These deficits are being covered by printing money. Sooner or later, the printing presses will cause the US dollar to collapse and domestic inflation to explode. Social Security benefits will be wiped out by inflation rising more rapidly than the cost-of-living adjustments. If America survives, no one will be left but the mega-rich. Unless there is a violent revolution.
Alternatively, if the Federal Reserve puts the brake on monetary expansion, interest rates will rise, sending the economy into a deeper depression.
Washington, focused on its newest war, is oblivious to America's peril. As Stiglitz notes, the costs of the Iraq war alone could have kept every foreclosed family in their home, provided health care for every American child, and wiped out the student loans of graduates who cannot find jobs because they have been outsoured to foreigners. However, the great democratic elected government of "the world's only superpower" prefers to murder Muslims in order to enhance the profits of the military/security complex. More money is spent violating the constitutional rights of American air travelers than is spent in behalf of the needy.
Congressman Don Young urges the opening of ANWR and the development of American Energy Sources. His bill, HR 6107, the American Energy Independence and Price Reduction Act, would open ANWR and use the approximately $200 billion in federal revenue generated to develop Alternative Energy sources
Rep Don Young Urges Producing American Energy & Opening ANWR
This blogger doesn't like Government Worker Unions, because for me just talking to politicians, proposing legislation to help youth go right, interrupted the revenue collection system of the State of Connecticut, police, lawyers, and the courts. I was then put on the then version of a Homeland Security Fusion Center watch list for me to be arrested and barbecued on sight. Related links of why Steven G. Erickson doesn't like Government workers, police, and judicial worker unions:
If a fat, on personality cop, who is living at home with his mother wants your wife, or girlfriend for himself, he can arrest you. If this same cop doesn't want to do his job, he can arrest you. If a cop doesn't want you proposing laws to elected officials that are for the good of the public, but interupt the revenue collection system of lawyers, the state, police, and the courts, you can be arrested. You can be arrested for Free Speech of you expose Public Corruption, Police Brutality, or Judicial Misconduct as I did in the State of Connecticut. Pictures, story, and more:
Post Office Box Eight Seventy Four, Brattleboro, Vermont 05302
[Barbara Sattal] was, or is, an alleged Connecticut State Police Confidential State Registered Police Informant. She allegedly was offered $10,000 to set me up for a State Police arrest for DUI, where drugs would be planted on me, and I'd arrested for assaulting a police officers after police beat me up. It was planned that I would get 5 to 15 years for this "offense". My crime was proposing laws that the police and judicial workers union didn't like and for engaging in Free Speech exposing public corruption, judicial misconduct, and police brutality.
Sattal, allegedly set her own ex-husband up for a DUI when she was angry with him. She would make dates with guys, have then drink a lot, and then they'd be arrested for DUI. She did other similar activities as an informant. She fell for me, and left her husband. I didn't know she was married, and ended the relationship after finding out that and that she was offered money by police to help railroad me to prison. She told me that I would lose my properties, daughter, business, and more if I didn't continue to date her. She told me that she could either protect me from the Connecticut State Police, or they'd get me. She also told me that the State Police would enforce a "no dating" policy on me. They did. A woman I was dating told me she was pulled over and sexually assaulted twice on her way home from my house, terrorizing her out of dating me after that.
The State's official plan allegedly was to make sure I lost my 3 rental properties, my home, contracting business built over 2 decades, to estrange me from my daughter and family, to ruin my credibility, to railroad me to prison, and then kick me out of the State of Connecticut upon my release. Barbara S. Sattal confirmed that. I am unsure of her middle initial and the proper spelling of her last name.
Peter J. Coukos also confirmed that police were out to make sure I went to prison, lost everything, and to become estranged from my daughter and family. Coukos told me that if I did not pay him $30,000 that he would make a false claim that I threatened him with a firearm as police wanted to arrest me again and ensure I got prison. I got that on tape and provided it to State Police and Stafford Officer "Fat Frank" Frank Prochaska. I was told if I pursued charges against Coukos, I would be arrested. I then contacted the FBI, then, and nothing was done, no follow up, no questions, nothing.
Peter J. Coukos was allegedly asked by police to help enforce their "No Dating" policy against me and to help railroad me to prison and terrorize me out of Connecticut, as State Police had told me I was kicked out of the state. Coukos was allegedly offered first dibbs on my property and help getting a state permit to carry a pistol even though he had a DUI, smoked crack cocaine, frequented prostitutes, tried to sleep with, or did sleep with minors, has a prescription drug problems, and has mental health issues, to assist police in harassing, abusing, and ruining me.
After being a complete criminal dirtbag, Coukos' reward was my properties. I had spend 100's of thousands of dollars fixing them up and years of my life's hard labor. I have nothing to show for that and have been estranged from my daughter going on ten years. What American Dream?
Coukos caught me out in my former back yard, I had been visiting a female former tenant friend, Sue Johnston, and he began punching me in the back of the head telling me he wanted my then 14 year old daughter to get on her knees and give him a blow job. He also told me she would have to do that for him when I was in prison as police ensured him he could beat on me and that I was going to prison. I didn't fight back as I was already facing a year in a half from having had to defend myself when alleged police informant Brian Caldwell attacked me on my property after stalking me, threatening my life, and telling me he'd cut my penis off if he caught me out on my property. This came out in my rigged Connecticut "trial".
Coukos printed out a picture of me, wrote something like "Fuck you Connecticut State Police," and left it in his properties, which were mine, saying I broke into them in 2003. Coukos was trying to get me violated on probation with a false police report, so I would spend the rest of my life in prison after he had bullshitted police into helping him steal my property from me.
For a long time, I've wanted to say what I have below. I did one take, didn't change my shirt, or comb my hair, I just said what was on my mind:
* * * *
Peter Coukos threatens my daughter's life if she doesn't address him as "Mr. Coukos".
Middle aged man leaves threats on voicemail for my 14 year o
Help get this new ad on the air, donate at http://RememberBuilding7.org --- RememberBuilding7 is a non-partisan effort led by 9/11 family members to raise awareness of the destruction of World Trade Center Building 7.
Help put this TV Ad on the Air -- Go to RememberBuilding7.org
Four Texas Klansmen, from left, John Grindle, 30, his younger brothers, Joseph, 24, and George "Rusty,' 29 and their brother-in-law, William Pete Lofton, 49, all lost their businesses and jobs after they were photographed without their Klan hoods. Photo by Ron Laytner, Edit International
Families, at work, social groups, friends etc., we can all identify who is the Kickdog. The kick dog will absorb all the hostility, venting, blame, and abuse for others, that is their perceived purpose. If you are the kickdog, you enable others to make you so.
It may take constant vigilance to not be the kickdog and undoing your role could mean loss of family, work, romantic, social, and other relationships.
American police officers have overstepped the jurisdiction by the continued brutality they have administered at the expense of US citizens. Many say unless the United States citizens rise up to stop the attacks could become uncontrollable. Survive and Thrive host George Hemminger says the United States must take to the streets and demand these injustices be corrected!
Check out the full interview of rapper and member of Streets Sweeper Social Club Raymond "Boots" Riley that wasn't seen on air. Today is International Day Against Police Brutality yet more Americans are being harassed by an overbearing police force that has crossed the line. Raymond "Boots" Riley says the police are never going to be on our side, we need a radical militant labor movement.
Recorded at the James A. Little Theatre in Santa Fe, New Mexico on March 8, 2011.
Glenn Greenwald is an attorney and the author of three books: How Would a Patriot Act?, A Tragic Legacy, and Great American Hypocrites. In 2009, he received an Izzy Award by the Park Center for Independent Media for his "pathbreaking journalistic courage and persistence in confronting conventional wisdom, official deception, and controversial issues." He also received an Online Journalism Award in 2010 for Best Commentary for his coverage of U.S. Army Private Bradley Manning. Greenwald is a columnist and blogger at Salon.com and has contributed to several newspapers and political news magazines.
Gear | NewsA student who is auctioning her virginity to pay for a masters degree in Family and Marriage therapy has seen bidding hit £2.5million ($3.7m).
Natalie Dylan(pic), 22, claims her offer of a one-night stand has persuaded 10,000 men to bid for sex with her.
Last September, when her auction came to light, she had received bids up to £162,000 ($243,000) but since then interest in her has rocketed.
The student who has a degree in Women's Studies insisted she was not demeaning herself. Miss Dylan, from San Diego, California, USA, said she was persuaded to offer herself to the highest bidder after her sister Avia, 23, paid for her own degree after working as a prostitute for three weeks.
She said she had had a lot of attention from a wide range of men, including "weirdos", "those who get really graphically sexual about what they want to do to me" and "lots of polite requests from rich businessmen".....
Miss Dylan said she did not think it was particularly significant to be willing to sell your virginity and insisted that she was happy to undergo medical tests for any doubters. I just want to say, the buyer is a ...
Shocking video taken from an NYPD helicopter shows new angles from the terrorist attacks of 9/11. The footage was recently leaked by Cryptome ( http://cryptome.org/ ).
The 15-minutes of footage is raw video of the towers in flames. The video taken by NYPD was allegedly obtained by the federal government's National Institute of Standards and Technology under the Freedom of Information Act for the purpose of conducting their 9/11 investigation.
Cryptome, a website similar to WikiLeaks, later obtained the footage from an anonymous source and posted it online.
Operation Mockingbird was a secret Central Intelligence Agency campaign to influence domestic and foreign media beginning in the 1950s.
According to the Congress report published in 1976:
"The CIA currently maintains a network of several hundred foreign individuals around the world who provide intelligence for the CIA and at times attempt to influence opinion through the use of covert propaganda. These individuals provide the CIA with direct access to a large number of newspapers and periodicals, scores of press services and news agencies, radio and television stations, commercial book publishers, and other foreign media outlets."
Senator Frank Church argued that misinforming the world cost American taxpayers an estimated $265 million a year.
In 1948, Frank Wisner was appointed director of the Office of Special Projects (OSP). Soon afterwards OSP was renamed the Office of Policy Coordination (OPC). This became the espionage and counter-intelligence branch of the Central Intelligence Agency. Wisner was told to create an organization that concentrated on "propaganda, economic warfare; preventive direct action, including sabotage, anti-sabotage, demolition and evacuation measures; subversion against hostile states, including assistance to underground resistance groups, and support of indigenous anti-Communist elements in threatened countries of the free world."
Later that year Wisner established Mockingbird, a program to influence the domestic and foreign media. Wisner recruited Philip Graham from The Washington Post to run the project within the industry. According to Deborah Davis in Katharine the Great; "By the early 1950s, Wisner 'owned' respected members of The New York Times, Newsweek, CBS and other communications vehicles."
In 1951, Allen W. Dulles persuaded Cord Meyer to join the CIA. However, there is evidence that he was recruited several years earlier and had been spying on the liberal organizations he had been a member of in the later 1940s. According to Deborah Davis, Meyer became Mockingbird's "principal operative."
In 1977, Rolling Stone alleged that one of the most important journalists under the control of Operation Mockingbird was Joseph Alsop, whose articles appeared in over 300 different newspapers. Other journalists alleged by Rolling Stone Magazine to have been willing to promote the views of the CIA included Stewart Alsop (New York Herald Tribune), Ben Bradlee (Newsweek), James Reston (New York Times), Charles Douglas Jackson (Time Magazine), Walter Pincus (Washington Post), William C. Baggs (The Miami News), Herb Gold (The Miami News) and Charles Bartlett (Chattanooga Times). According to Nina Burleigh (A Very Private Woman), these journalists sometimes wrote articles that were commissioned by Frank Wisner. The CIA also provided them with classified information to help them with their work.
After 1953, the network was overseen by Allen W. Dulles, director of the Central Intelligence Agency. By this time Operation Mockingbird had a major influence over 25 newspapers and wire agencies. These organizations were run by people with well-known right-wing views such as William Paley (CBS), Henry Luce (Time and Life Magazine), Arthur Hays Sulzberger (New York Times), Alfred Friendly (managing editor of the Washington Post), Jerry O'Leary (Washington Star), Hal Hendrix (Miami News), Barry Bingham, Sr., (Louisville Courier-Journal), James Copley (Copley News Services) and Joseph Harrison (Christian Science Monitor).
The Office of Policy Coordination (OPC) was funded by siphoning of funds intended for the Marshall Plan. Some of this money was used to bribe journalists and publishers. Frank Wisner was constantly looking for ways to help convince the public of the dangers of communism. In 1954, Wisner arranged for the funding of the Hollywood production of Animal Farm, the animated allegory based on the book written by George Orwell.
According to Alex Constantine (Mockingbird: The Subversion Of The Free Press By The CIA), in the 1950s, "some 3,000 salaried and contract CIA employees were eventually engaged in propaganda efforts". Wisner was also able to restrict newspapers from reporting about certain events. For example, the CIA plots to overthrow the governments of Iran (See: Operation Ajax) and Guatemala (See: Operation PBSUCCESS).
CIA Funding and Manipulation of the U.S. News Media
Domestic Spying Victim Virginia Cody
Homeland Security is sending individual names and bios to gas drilling companies in Pennsylvania. So Homeland Security are corporate/bankster goons?
There is a 294 page report that now allows the FBI to work around privacy laws. Webster Tarpley discuss' the art of deception the government has been using in order to work around the law. However, the use of deception has given the United States significant advantages during war time.
I like having my two beer allotment when I am driving at a non-chain lounge, cafe, or bar, especially one that makes its own beer. I ended up at a pub at the Colony Mill, Keene, New Hampshire.
I tried Chocolate Stout beer, after making fun of the concept calling the beer adulterated and "fu fu". After the insistence of the bartender that I should at least try it, before making fun of it, I did. There was no noticeable taste of Chocolate, but there wasn't the noticeable smoky taste of a true stout either. I love Murphy's Stout.
I talked with a retired middle school teacher on a number of subjects. We talked about government workers unions, Kentucky, Martial Law declared during the race riots of 1968, the burning of sulfur rich coal, the TVA, the WWW, WPA, Tennessee, Hoover Dam, waterfall driven power generation, nuclear power, nuclear bombs, tomato gardens, climate change, the fall of the Soviet Union wall, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Israel, his teaching there two years, gaseous diffusion for uranium enrichment, government intrusion into one's life, now vs. before, the unrest in Egypt and "how we let that leader keep his palace and some cash", my talking about national sovereignty and not being an intrusive overbearing world power police state, about the Depression era bridge project on the Merrit Parkway in Connecticut, out of work architects, restoration, acid rain in New England because Kentucky coal burning electric plants had their stacks built beyond 1500 feet to keep the corn and other farmer crops from being killed by the sulfur rich coal, and many other subjects.
Great amounts of power were needed for the centrifuges and for gaseous diffusion to make nuclear bombs. Was part of the recovery in part fueled by the nuclear arms race, not a government policy that was supposedly meant to put citizens to work?
I think there are too many government workers, making too much money, and are too eager to support a police state that has allowed them to live so high on the hog that they've sold their souls.
But, on a positive note, I learned from a teacher in a half hour, even though I didn't agree with all of his political opinions.
One of the last times I was at the Colony Mill, I hung out with Ken Burns of PBS documentary fame. We talked about how to get financing and distributing of documentaries once they are finished. Ken asked me to give him a call if I needed any more advice. I shot the below video then:
Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns came to the Colony Mill Outlet Mall in Keene, New Hampshire, to the Toadstool Bookstore. Global Warming, nature, the environment, the beauty of US national parks, documentary film making, upcoming projects, Vietnam project, the American Civil War, and much more was discussed.
There are many people seeing their true reflection in the mirror after viewing the below post. Many are still in denial. Many are considering how to better deal with their version of a lunatic acquaintance, co-worker, or family relation.
Should former Connecticut US Senator Chris Dodd be hung for treason for the further ripping off of American taxpayers, being a bankster enabler, for taking bribes from the corporate banking elite, and for being a treasonous asshole?
[click here] for: State Martial Law US Constitution
James Corbett of http://corbettreport.com interviews Keelan Balderson of WideShut about the 7/7 London Bombings, the recent inquest, the network of intelligence assets surrounding the alleged bombers and some of the anomolies that still need answering about that tragic day.
Unscientific hype about the flooding risks from climate change will cost us all dear
The warmists have sound financial grounds for hyping the dangers of flooding posed by climate change, writes Christopher Booker
After Hurricane Katrina flooded New Orleans, the price of insurance soared
As the great global warming scare continues to crumble, attention focuses on all those groups that have a huge interest in keeping it alive. Governments look on it as an excuse to raise billions of pounds in taxes. Wind farm developers make fortunes from the hidden subsidies we pay through our electricity bills. A vast academic industry receives more billions for concocting the bogus science that underpins the scare. Carbon traders hope to make billions from corrupt schemes based on buying and selling the right to emit CO2. But no financial interest stands to make more from exaggerating the risks of climate change than the re-insurance industry, which charges retail insurers for “catastrophe cover”, paid for by all of us through our premiums.
An insight into this was given by a paper published by Nature on February 17, which claimed to show for the first time how man-made climate change greatly increases the risk of flood damage. Among the eight authors of the paper are two of the most influential scientists at the heart of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Prof Peter Stott of the UK Met Office’s Hadley Centre and Dr Myles Allen, head of Oxford’s Climate Dynamics Group. Two of their co-authors are from Risk Management Solutions (RMS), a California-based firm which is the world leader in advising the insurance industry on climate change.
The study, based entirely on computer models, focused on the exceptional flooding that took place in England and Wales in the autumn of 2000. Its conclusion – that climate change could increase the chance of flooding by up to 90 per cent – was widely publicised, without questioning, by all the usual media cheerleaders for global warming, led by the BBC’s Richard Black (“Climate change increases flood risk, researchers say”).
When less partisan observers examined the paper, however, they were astonished. Although Nature has long been a leading propagandist for man-made climate change, this example seemed truly bizarre. Why had this strangely opaque study been based solely on the results of a series of computer models – mainly provided by the Hadley Centre and RMS – and not on any historical data about rainfall and river flows?
The Met Office’s own records show no upward trend in UK rainfall between 1961 and 2004. Certainly autumn 2000 showed an unusual rainfall maximum, but it was exceeded in 1930. The graph between then and 2010 shows no significant upward trend. While 2000 may have seen a lot of rain, 1768 and 1872 were even wetter. In the real world, the data show no evidence of an increase in UK rainfall at all. Any idea that there is one seemed to be entirely an artefact of the computer models.
On Friday came the fullest and most expert dissection of the Nature paper so far, published on the Watts Up With That website by Willis Eschenbach, a very experienced computer modeller. His findings are devastating. After detailed analysis of the study’s multiple flaws, he sums up by accusing Nature of “trying to pass off the end-result of a long daisy-chain of specifically selected, untested, unverified, un-investigated computer models as valid, falsifiable, peer-reviewed science”.
His conclusion is worth quoting at some length: “When your results represent the output of four computer models, fed into a fifth computer model, whose output goes to a sixth computer model, which is calibrated against a seventh computer model, and then your results are compared to a series of different results from the fifth computer model, but run with different parameters, in order to show that flood risks have increased from greenhouse gases…” you cannot pretend that this is “a valid representation of reality”, let alone “a sufficiently accurate representation of reality to guide our future actions”.
This is precisely why the Nature study is of such significance – because it will undoubtedly be used to guide future actions, which will in one way or another impact on all our lives.
For a start, consider the players in this drama. Prof Stott and Dr Allen have long been among the most influential scientists in the world in stoking up climate alarmism. A famous analysis by John McClean showed that they played a key part in compiling the single most important chapter in the IPCC’s last report, in 2007. The chapter, entitled “Understanding and attributing climate change”, cited many more papers by them than anyone else. They have now been appointed as lead authors of the relevant chapter in the next IPCC report, “Detection and attribution of climate change”, which will guide the actions of governments all over the world.
As for their two colleagues from Risk Management Solutions, this is not the first time that this leading adviser to the world’s re-insurance industry has been involved in a controversial bid to heighten alarm over the consequences of climate change.
In October 2005, in the wake of the Hurricane Katrina disaster, RMS held a meeting in Bermuda with four hurricane specialists, all of the alarmist persuasion, to quiz them as to how they thought hurricane activity was likely to be affected between 2006 and 2010, thanks to climate change, and how this would impact on the southern United States, notably Florida. On the basis of this meeting, RMS advised the re-insurers that the risk of hurricane damage over the next four years was hugely increased. The companies found that their reserves were $82 billion short of what they might be expected to pay. Premiums, particularly in Florida, accordingly rocketed upwards.
Under the heading “The $82 billion prediction”, the details of this episode are chronicled on his blog by Dr Roger Pielke Jr, who in 2008 advised RMS that the methodology on which it relied was so biased that “a group of monkeys would have arrived at the exact same results”. Dr Pielke, an expert in environmental impacts, recently published a chart showing how, although the RMS prediction for hurricane damage between 2006 and 2010 was a third higher than the historical average, the actual cost proved to be well under half the average figure. But, thanks to RMS, the insurance industry had made billions from higher premiums.
In 2008, following the disastrous floods of summer 2007, that vociferous climate alarmist Bob Ward, now at the Grantham Institute but then a director of RMS, called for the British government to work more closely with the insurance industry “to devise mutually beneficial strategies for dealing with flood risks”. We understand how working with RMS might be beneficial to the insurance industry. But whether, in light of the Nature study, the Government would find it beneficial is another matter – never mind the rest of us, as we are asked to pay ever higher insurance premiums, based not least on the findings of those RMS computer models.
I shall have to leave until next week consideration of two remarkable developments in the ongoing scandal of the unjustified snatching of children by social workers. On Monday, Lord Justice Thorpe said he was “aghast” at a case in which the social workers’ removal of three children had been upheld by a judge after a hearing that lasted only 15 minutes and at which the parents were not allowed to speak. He ordered the family to be reunited. As I regularly report, however, similarly shocking cases come to light every week. Meanwhile our Children’s Minister, Tim Loughton, says he is “contemplating some kind of ombudsman system” to investigate the “small number of cases which go horribly wrong”, where courts uphold the snatching of children without reason. I welcome this as tacit recognition of the point I have been trying to make here for months. May I also say how stunned I am by the generosity of our readers’ response to my appeal on behalf of “Pex”, the Fijian veteran of the British Army threatened with deportation. Again, I shall update next week.
The divide between the haves and have-nots in America continues to grow and it appears there is no end in sight. A big factor of this gap is the continued price increases in basic commodities. Staff writer for the Washington Post Ylan Mui says one thing to consider as commodities continue to increase in price, there will be less money a family can spend on discretionary items, one thing that drives the economy.
New book sheds new light on Lincoln's racial views
By MATTHEW BARAKAT, Associated Press Matthew Barakat, Associated Press – Fri Mar 4, 4:04 pm ET
McLEAN, Va. – Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address has inspired Americans for generations, but consider his jarring remarks in 1862 to a White House audience of free blacks, urging them to leave the U.S. and settle in Central America.
"For the sake of your race, you should sacrifice something of your present comfort for the purpose of being as grand in that respect as the white people," Lincoln said, promoting his idea of colonization: resettling blacks in foreign countries on the belief that whites and blacks could not coexist in the same nation.
Lincoln went on to say that free blacks who envisioned a permanent life in the United States were being "selfish" and he promoted Central America as an ideal location "especially because of the similarity of climate with your native land — thus being suited to your physical condition."
As the nation celebrates the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's first inauguration Friday, a new book by a researcher at George Mason University in Fairfax makes the case that Lincoln was even more committed to colonizing blacks than previously known. The book, "Colonization After Emancipation," is based in part on newly uncovered documents that authors Philip Magness and Sebastian Page found at the British National Archives outside London and in the U.S. National Archives.
In an interview, Magness said he thinks the documents he uncovered reveal Lincoln's complexity.
"It makes his life more interesting, his racial legacy more controversial," said Magness, who is also an adjuct professor at American University.
Lincoln's views about colonization are well known among historians, even if they don't make it into most schoolbooks. Lincoln even referred to colonization in the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, his September 1862 warning to the South that he would free all slaves in Southern territory if the rebellion continued. Unlike some others, Lincoln always promoted a voluntary colonization, rather than forcing blacks to leave.
But historians differ on whether Lincoln moved away from colonization after he issued the official Emancipation Proclamation on Jan. 1, 1863, or whether he continued to support it.
Magness and Page's book offers evidence that Lincoln continued to support colonization, engaging in secret diplomacy with the British to establish a colony in British Honduras, now Belize.
Among the records found at the British archives is an 1863 order from Lincoln granting a British agent permission to recruit volunteers for a Belize colony.
"He didn't let colonization die off. He became very active in promoting it in the private sphere, through diplomatic channels," Magness said. He surmises that Lincoln grew weary of the controversy that surrounded colonization efforts, which had become enmeshed in scandal and were criticized by many abolitionists.
As late as 1864, Magness found a notation that Lincoln asked the attorney general whether he could continue to receive counsel from James Mitchell, his colonization commissioner, even after Congress had eliminated funding for Mitchell's office.
Illinois' state historian, Tom Schwartz, who is also a research director at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield, Ill., said that while historians differ, there is ample evidence that Lincoln's views evolved away from colonization in the final two years of the Civil War.
Lincoln gave several speeches referring to the rights blacks had earned as they enlisted in the Union Army, for instance. And presidential secretary John Hay wrote in July 1864 that Lincoln had "sloughed off" colonization.
"Most of the evidence points to the idea that Lincoln is looking at other ways" to resolve the transition from slavery besides colonization at the end of his presidency, Schwartz said.
Lincoln is the not the only president whose views on race relations and slavery were more complex and less idealistic than children's storybook histories suggest. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were both slaveholders despite misgivings. Washington freed his slaves when he died.
"Washington, because he wanted to keep the union, knew he had to ignore the slavery problem because it would have torn the country apart, said James Rees, director of Washington's Mount Vernon estate.
"It's tempting to wish he had tried. The nation had more chance of dealing with slavery with Washington than with anyone else," Rees said, noting the esteem in which Washington was held in both the North and the South.
Magness said views on Lincoln can be strongly held and often divergent. He noted that people have sought to use Lincoln's legacy to support all manner of political policy agendas since the day he was assassinated. And nobody can claim definitive knowledge of Lincoln's own views, especially on a topic as complex as race relations.
"He never had a chance to complete his vision. Lincoln's racial views were evolving at the time of his death," Magness said.