Jefferson Memorial at Sunset
The US government's debts have ballooned so badly the National Debt Clock in New York has run out of digits to record the spiralling figure.
The digital counter marks the national debt level, but when that passed the $10 trillion point last month, the sign could not display the full amount. BBC, 10-9-08
Campaign '08 Update: Overcoming the Triple Threat to the Election of 2008
By Richard Power
Obama has already won in the struggle for the hearts and minds of the US electorate.
Even the corporate news media's own polling can't hide his ascension.
Negative ads will not dampen the turn out this year.
Nor will the Bradley factor, i.e., those who will not admit to pollsters that they will vote against Obama, because of his race, but will do so once they are alone in the voting booth. Indeed, I foresee a reverse Bradley effect, i.e., Republicans and Independents who will not admit to pollsters that are going to vote for the Democratic ticket, because they never have before, but they are going to this time because they are so embarrassed and so guilt-ridden by what has happened over the last eight years. And the fact that Obama is black will even make it easier and better for them, because it will give them a genuine reason to feel good about themselves. It will be, for many Republicans and Independents, a redemptive moment.
It is also important to remember that this is, after all, not the ascension of a progressive but a centrist. The election and swearing in of Obama will not put the progressive movement into power, it will put an enlightened centrist in power and thereby restore the balance. Along with a significant increase in the size of the Democratic majority in the US Senate, it is a critical first step in restoring the Republic. And yes, events may drive him to the progressive end of the political spectrum, just as they drove the newly elected Roosevelt, who also ran as a centrist.
But there is a triple threat that stands between all of us (i.e., patriots left, right and center) and the first step to the restoration of the republic: 1) violence against the candidates, 2) the theft of the election itself, and 3) martial law. There is evidence that all three elements of danger are in play. Although it is unwise to ever underestimate the power of the people once the mass of it finally moves to throw off the foul and the foolish, it is also unwise to underestimate the ferocity of a rapid beast that has been cornered.
Here is evidence of each of the three dangers of which I speak:
1. At recent rallies, both McCain and Palin have allowed taunts of "Terrorist" and "Kill him!" to be directed at Obama without challenging them.
Fox News’ political reporter Carl Cameron is on the trail with John McCain. Reporting from a live McCain rally this evening, he said:
You’ll hear the booing behind me. In recent days, when Barack Obama’s name has been mentioned, it has gone from boos and hissing to actual chants and calls of traitor, criminal, and even terrorist.
The McCain campaign says they don’t condone it, they don’t want to see it happen, but it’s happening more and more every day.
The crowd reaction may have something to do with the frequent charges from the McCain campaign that Obama “pals around with terrorists.” Think Progress, 10-8-08
The point is not what the campaign says officially, the point is that neither McCain nor Palin has addressed it directly either in the moment or afterward. Indeed, McCain has underscored it by referring chillingly to Obama as "That one!" in their recent debate. And, of course, Fox reporting this story is really Fox spreading the word and encouraging more of the same behavior.
2. The massive Republican effort to cancel out the will of the electorate through caging, which has been investigated and reported tirelessly in the blogosphere, is now being acknowledged even in some mainstream news media (MSM), e.g., CBS and the New York Times.
We've been reporting on the GOP's October "Surprise" over the last few days (challenges to Democratic voter registrations in a number of states, and, perhaps more notably, their bogus PR campaign to charge that ACORN, a community organization who heroically registers millions of low-income voters who nobody else bothers to, is committing "voter fraud". See here, here and here, for example.)
But the November Surprise, as we've been trying to warn for many months (if not years), will undoubtedly be the thousands who show up to the polls to vote on November 4th, only to find out that they have somehow "fallen off" the voter rolls.
We've urged folks to check their registrations, even if they recently voted in a primary election, to make sure they haven't been purged (info on how to do that quickly in all 50 states, right here.) ...
Today, the New York Times has published a scathing report, based on a detailed investigation revealing that "Tens of thousands of eligible voters in at least six swing states have been removed from the rolls or have been blocked from registering in ways that appear to violate federal law". Brad Friedman, NYTIMES: THOUSANDS OF ELIGIBLE VOTERS ILLEGALLY REMOVED FROM VOTER ROLLS, Brad Blog, 10-9-08
Of course, the MSM still shies away from the story of how two consecutive national elections were stolen. That's why it is imperative that you understand who Stephen Spoonamore is, you must hear the story he has to tell and you must share it with as many of your fellow citizens as you can. It is worth noting that the MSM could not have so disregarded these crimes if the Democratic Party itself had not chosen to hide from the truth, which was both a moral failure and a political miscalculation on the leadership's part.
3. And yes, there is also the spectre of martial law, either before the election or more likely before the inauguration. Concern about this long-shot possibility has been ratcheted up by the fact that the First Brigade of the Third Infantry Division, three to four thousand soldiers, has been deployed in the United States as of October 1. Remember, in the last several years, Posse Comitatus and Habeus Corpus have been neutered, the Insurrection Act of 1807 has been modified, and a series of executive orders related to martial law have been signed by Bush.
Here is a powerful piece from Naomi Wolf, read it in its entirety and share it with those who have an open mind and give a damn:
.. . I am in Seattle and heard from the brother of one of the soldiers that they are engaged in exercises now. Amy Goodman reported that an Army spokesperson confirmed that they will have access to lethal and non lethal crowd control technologies and tanks. ... U.S. Rep. Brad Sherman of California said to Congress, captured on C-Span and viewable on YouTube, that individual members of the House were threatened with martial law within a week if they did not pass the bailout bill:
"The only way they can pass this bill is by creating and sustaining a panic atmosphere. … Many of us were told in private conversations that if we voted against this bill on Monday that the sky would fall, the market would drop two or three thousand points the first day and a couple of thousand on the second day, and a few members were even told that there would be martial law in America if we voted no."
If this is true and Rep. Sherman is not delusional, I ask you to consider that if they are willing to threaten martial law now, it is foolish to assume they will never use that threat again. It is also foolish to trust in an orderly election process to resolve this threat. And why deploy the First Brigade? One thing the deployment accomplishes is to put teeth into such a threat. Naomi Wolf, Thousands of Troops Are Deployed on U.S. Streets Ready to Carry Out "Crowd Control," AlterNet, 10-8-08
My only caveat to Naomi's brave piece is the conviction that the decisive majority of men and women in the officer ranks throughout the US military understand that their oath is to protect and defend not any particular individual, or any specific office, but the Constitution of the USA itself, and, indeed, to protect and defend it against *all* enemies foreign and domestic.
Yes, they are deployed. But perhaps, in reality, they will ensure an orderly transfer of power.
So hope for the best, but nevertheless, prepare for the worst.
Tune in to the Thom Hartman Show -- via podcast, Internet or AM radio -- for clarity of analysis as events unfold.
Follow the narrative of election security issues on Brad Blog and Mark Crispin Miller's Notes from the Underground.
Buy copies of Naomi Wolf's Give Me Liberty from Buzzflash and pass them on to your friends and colleagues.
Do whatever you can wherever you are, whoever you are, to TURN OUT THE VOTE.
Do whatever you have to do to make you and yours as ready as you can be for disruption and upheaval.
Odds are, in spite of the triple-threat, change for the better is unstoppable.
And once it comes, if it comes, do not be satisfied with simply "better," lean in and push hard for the best.
Richard Power's Left-Handed Security: Overcoming Fear, Greed & Ignorance in This Era of Global Crisis is available now! Click here for more information.
For an archive of Words of Power posts on Campaign '08, click here.
For Words of Power's archive of posts on Election Security, click here.
Martial Law, Barack Obama, Sarah Palin, Thom Hartmann, Mark Crispin Miller, Brad Friedman,Stephen Spoonamore, David Iglesias, Naomi Wolf, Blogosphere Richard Power