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A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
by Elliot D. Cohen, Ph.D.

In his famous essay, "On Liberty," John Stuart Mill made plain the danger of censoring the opinions of others. "The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion," he said, "is that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error."

Friday, 22 September 2006 08:56

BuzzFlash Mailbag for September 22, 2006

BUZZFLASH MAILBAG

Subject: What's this ruckus about Habeas Corpus?

Dear Buzz,

For more than 400 years, the Writ of Habeas Corpus has been one of the most sacred legal protections we in the English-speaking world have had; it is a centerpiece of our liberty.

A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION

by Angie Pratt

I don't want to hear about abortion. I don't want to hear about stem-cell research. I don't want to hear about federal judgeships. They are so much noise.

A BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS

If Osama bin Laden is the scare tactic used by Republicans to sway moderates, the very thought of Nancy Pelosi as the new Speaker of the House is what they are using to rile up their base. Today's leading headline at RNC.com is an ominous warning: "Dems Would Make A Liberal Partisan Who Doesn't Even Believe We Are At War Third In Line For The U.S. Presidency."

A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
by Jeff Cohen, author of "Cable News Confidential"

"Devil" is in the Details: Chavez, Limbaugh and Name-Calling

Across the U.S. political and media spectrum, there was wide agreement yesterday: Name-calling and personal attacks are bad for national and global dialogue. Prompting the unity were Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez' comments that President Bush was the devil incarnate, "El Diablo."

BARBARA'S DAILY BUZZFLASH MINUTE

The best example of "cut and run" I've seen to date, is that tragic day in September 2001, the day that George Bush climbed aboard Air Force One and flew into the wild blue yonder for the safety of a cave somewhere in Nebraska "outta harm's way"! Of course that's the same day we saw Dick Cheney "cut and run" for an undisclosed location somewhere in netherland! And now they're trying to tell us these guys are the best we have for our safety and security! Well screw them and the horse they rode in on, I'm tired of the chickenhawk cowards who pretend to be tough, but can't deliver the goods! Give me someone who isn't afraid of their own shadow, someone with enough brain power to do the job and someone who can provide us with some real safety and security. Our lives depend on it!

WORLD MEDIA WATCH

1//Asia Times Online, Hong Kong-- US TROOPS IN IRAQ ARE TEHRAN’S ‘HOSTAGES’ (For many months, the administration of US George W Bush has been complaining that Iranian meddling in Iraq is a threat to the country's stability and to US troops. The irony of this publicity campaign over Tehran's alleged bid to undermine the occupation is that Iran may well be the main factor holding up a showdown between militant Shi'ites and US forces. The underlying reality in Iraq, which the Bush administration does not appear to grasp fully, is that the United States is now dependent on the sufferance of Iran and its Iraqi Shi'ite political-military allies to continue the occupation. ... But the main threat to the occupation comes not from the Sunni insurgents but from the militant Iraqi Shi'ite forces aligned with Iran, led by Muqtada al-Sadr's Mehdi Army. The armed Shi'ite militias are now powerful enough to make it impossible for the US occupation to continue. Gone are the days when the US military could be so cavalier about Muqtada's forces that it deliberately provoked a major confrontation with him in Najaf in April 2004. That was when he was believed to have 10,000 poorly trained troops. Since then, US officials have avoided giving any estimate of the Mehdi Army's strength. But according to a report published last month by London's Chatham House, which undoubtedly reflected the views of British intelligence in Iraq, the Mehdi Army may now be "several hundred thousand strong". Even if that estimate vastly overstates his troop strength, it reflects the sense that Muqtada has the strongest political-military force in the country - because of the loyalty that so many Shi'ites have to him. ... Last week, a "senior coalition official" admitted to the Washington Post that "there's not a military solution" to the Mehdi Army. But the Bush administration and the military in Iraq still appear to believe that there is some way to contain Muqtada's power. They have not yet accepted that Muqtada has both the intention and the capability to bring down the US occupation. Yet Muqtada has made no secret of his intentions.)

A BUZZFLASH NEWS ALERT

The rate of violent crime in America increased last year for the first time since 1991, according to a new FBI report. The increase coincides with dramatic cuts to state and local law enforcement funding by Republicans each year since President Bush took office. The $2.3 billion recently approved by the House amounts to nearly half of the $4.5 billion appropriated in 2001.

VERSE-CASE SCENARIO

Why Sen. Allen Denied Being Jewish

by Tony Peyser

Anti-Semitism among Southerners
Some might call inveterate
So, it doesn't matter if George's
Favorite flag is Confederate.

A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
by Brent Budowsky

This note will end with a call to action to Democratic and progressive billionaires and millionaires to step up to the plate at a critical hour of crisis for democracy in America. Readers can assume I am in the process of contacting some who fall into both categories, for support for the cause, and am open to suggestions from those who have, or know others who have, the means and commitment to make a difference.

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