The Plug Nickel Times is proud to bring you website links to select opinion articles that you may not find through your local media. All links are offsite unless otherwise noted - followed links should open in another browser window. Links can become dated or otherwise fail to function, for this reason we quote the actual headline of an article. This may allow you to find an alternate copy of the article through a news index or search engine. Some sites we link to may require a registration process to view an article - this website may be useful to you in those instances. Comments, corrections and submissions are welcome - an email link is at the bottom of the page.
November 30, 2006
The Gun in the Room by Stefan Molyneux
"It is a wearying but essential task to keep reminding people that the state is nothing but an agency of violence. When someone talks about 'the welfare state helping the poor,' we must point out the gun in the room. When someone opposes the decriminalization of marijuana, we must point out the gun in the room. When someone supports the reduction of taxes, we must point out the gun in the room - even if one bullet has been taken out.
So much political language is designed to obscure the simple reality of state violence that libertarianism sometimes has to sound like a broken record. We must, however, continue to peel back the euphemisms to reveal the socially-sanctioned brutality at the root of some of our most embedded social institutions."
What Makes Police Brutality Possible? by Roderick Long
"What should a large group of bystanders do if they see a handful of attackers unjustly assaulting and tormenting an unarmed individual?
The answer seems obvious: come to the victimís aid by disarming and overpowering the attackers.
But on November 14, when UCLA student Mostafa Tabatabainejad was assaulted in the university library, about fifty shocked and angry students stood by, protesting and shouting but not intervening, though the assailants were much fewer in number and were armed only with nonlethal weapons."
Trapped in Lies and Delusions by Jacob G. Hornberger
"Hanging over the Iraq debacle, however, is that one overriding moral issue that unfortunately all too many Americans have yet to confront: neither the Iraqi people nor their government ever attacked the United States or even threatened to do so. That means that in this conflict, which has killed more than 600,000 Iraqis, the United States is the aggressor nation and Iraq is the defending nation.
Why is that issue so important? Because it involves morality, not pragmatics. Do U.S. troops have the moral right to be killing people, when they are part of a military force that has aggressed against another country? Do they have the moral right to kill people who have done nothing worse than defend their nation from attack or attempt to oust an occupier from their midst? Does simply calling an action 'war' excuse an aggressor nation from the moral consequences of killing people in that war?"
E-Passport: Doorway to the Panopticon (Part One) at the Wolfesblog
Confronting Secret Law by Steven Aftergood
"The U.S. Supreme Court should reject the idea of a secret law or directive that purports to regulate public behavior yet cannot be disclosed, several public interest groups argued yesterday.
The groups filed amicus curiae briefs in support of a petition by John Gilmore, who challenged a government requirement that he produce official identification in order to board an airplane and was told that he could not see the underlying policy document because it is 'sensitive security information.'"
We are just watching things get worse by Natasha Walter
"When Britain and America went into Afghanistan in 2001, they claimed that the liberation of the country's burka-shrouded women was one of their top priorities. So did they deliver?"
Flight 69 by Becky Akers
"Still, despite their felonies against decency, neither the lady nor her paramour committed any crime. No one aboard the flight was robbed or killed. Nor was anyone assaulted: the lovers groped only each other. Sadly, thatís more than we can say for the security screeners who searched them before they boarded that plane.
Indeed, the affidavit proves how far sunk in totalitarianism we are. Remember the 'other passengers' whom Persing and Sewell 'made uncomfortable'? The affidavit doesnít mention them again. Rather, itís the flight crew who are uncomfortable when Persing and Sewell defy their orders, mock them, and refuse to kowtow. These glorified waiters and waitresses are now protected by Title 49, ß 46504, 'Interference with flight crew members and attendants,' of the US Code; obviously, passengers who displease them are terrorists and can be abused accordingly."
Missing presumed tortured by Stephen Grey
Internet Security in the macromedia Flash Age
Just another day at Minitrue
"The title of George Orwell's novel is 2006. It has always been called 2006."
The Terrorist Whisperers by Garry Reed
"Forget x-ray machines and body wands and bomb-sniffing bowwows. The TSA is working on a machine that can uncover terrorists by combining the capabilities of the Horse Whisperer, the Ghost Whisperer and Angela's Eyes. The folks at TSA (Touch and Stroke Agents) want to turn Israeli terror detection techniques into software algorisms so they can catch terrorists. This is because (multiple choice):
a. Americans are obsessed with technology
b. The TSA bureauboobs are obsessed with squandering more of our taxbucks
c. Wand-waving GED-dropout TSA hirelings are untrainable"
from A Thanksgiving Prayer by W. S. Burroughs
"Thanks for Prohibition and the
war against drugs.
Thanks for a country where
nobody's allowed to mind their
Thanks for a nation of finks.
Yes, thanks for all the
memories-- all right let's see
You always were a headache and
you always were a bore.
Thanks for the last and greatest
betrayal of the last and greatest
of human dreams."
(ed. note - It's only a betrayal if you ever believed it in the first place)
November 15, 2006
Anti-electorate wins landslide victory!
American Prison Planet: The Bush Administration as Global Jailor by Nick Turse
"Today, the United States presides over a burgeoning empire - not only the 'empire of bases' first described by Chalmers Johnson, but a far-flung new network of maximum security penitentiaries, detention centers, jail cells, cages, and razor wire-topped pens. From supermax-type isolation prisons in 40 of the 50 states to shadowy ghost jails at remote sites across the globe, this new network of detention facilities is quite unlike the gulags, concentration-camps, or prison nations of the past."
The Military Commissions Act in action by Glenn Greenwald
Money supply mystery
The right to do wrong by Wolf deVoon
(on-site link - exclusive to The Plug Nickel Times)
RIP Malachi Ritscher
My Half-Year of Hell With Christian Fundamentalists by Michael Gromek
"When Polish student Michael Gromek, 19, went to America on a student exchange, he found himself trapped in a host family of Christian fundamentalists. What followed was a six-month hell of dawn church visits and sex education talks as his new family tried to banish the devil from his soul. Here's his story."
Sunni's November Salon
ID theft, Real ID, and the Wizard of ID by Garry Reed
"In today's Peeping Tom Dystopia, government datacrats at all levels are fixated on finding out everything about us. They track us with spycams and RFID chips and warrantless wiretaps and computer stealthbugs and black boxes in our autos and covert email intercepts and mandatory snitching from our bankers and doctors and telephone firms and credit card companies. They need this massive database of birthdays and divorces and pay raises and colonoscopies and vaginal wart prescriptions because they are from the government and they are here to protect us."
Franklin's Tower by Robert Hunter