The United States was catapulted into a worldwide diplomatic crisis today, with the leaking to the Guardian and other international media of more than 250,000 classified cables from its embassies, many sent as recently as February this year.
At the start of a series of daily extracts from the US embassy cables – many designated “secret” – the Guardian can disclose that Arab leaders are privately urging an air strike on Iran and that US officials have been instructed to spy on the UN leadership.
These two revelations alone would be likely to reverberate around the world. But the secret dispatches, which were obtained by WikiLeaks, the whistleblowers’ website, also reveal Washington’s evaluation of many other highly sensitive international issues.
These include a shift in relations between China and North Korea, high-level concerns over Pakistan’s growing instability, and details of clandestine US efforts to combat al-Qaida in Yemen.
Among scores of disclosures that are likely to cause uproar, the cables detail:
From World Socialist Web Site: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/nov2010/irel-n29.shtml
Saturday’s demonstration by between 50,000 and 100,000 in Dublin against the bailout of banks was massive by Irish standards and in relation to its workforce of 2 million. It was a powerful expression of the determination of workers, young people and students to resist the savage austerity measures being imposed by the Fianna Fail-Green Party coalition as a precondition for an €85 billion package of loans and guarantees from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund.
The pain involved only gets worse. The deal reached with the EU finance ministers late Sunday means Ireland will have to pay a staggering 5.8 percent interest rate on its loan, compared with 5.2 percent for Greece. The Irish State will also funnel €17.5 billion into the coffers of the banks from the National Pension Reserve Fund and other sources. It has been estimated that by 2014 interest payments on the loan will have increased from €2.5 billion to over €8 billion per annum, around one fifth of all tax revenue.
Yet there is a fundamental political dilemma facing those looking to defend themselves from a further 10 percent cut in wages, tens of thousands of job losses, tax hikes and the elimination of social provisions—set to cost families that have already suffered an average €4,000 loss in income an additional €4,000 a year. It found symbolic expression at the rally at the end of the march, where the two main representatives of its organisers, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, were subjected to catcalls and booing that on occasion drowned out their speeches, even over the PA system.
The reaction to David Begg, the ICTU’s general secretary, and Jack O’Connor, the leader of Ireland’s largest union, SIPTU, was manifestly hostile. But this solicited precious little comment in the mainstream media. The Irish Sunday Times noted, “Jack O’Connor, the ICTU president, and David Begg, its General Secretary, were loudly heckled. Angry marchers shouted at O’Connor ‘to get off the stage’.
Continue reading at: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/nov2010/irel-n29.shtml
Disclaimer: I have gotten seriously pissed off with some of the BS about gender and the insistence upon the erasure of transsexuals by the smothering inclusive “Transgender Umbrella”.
But until the last half dozen or so years I’ve counted transgender individuals among my circle of friends. Unfortunately I’ve outlived those whom I knew in 3D and now most of my Transgender friends are people I have met on-line. Mainly on mailing lists and places like Facebook.
While I’ve argued with people, I actually like and respect some of those folks I have argued with.
I recognize the validity of economic arguments. Hell I was lucky to get SRS when I did. I caught the tail end of the 1960s prosperity coupled with cheap rent, and access to a loan that I might not have been able to get except for having someone willing to co-sign.
When I first came on-line some 15 years ago Alta Vista was the hot search engine and the alt. lists on Usenet were the place to be.
I encountered some really strange folks there and got in some very heated arguments.
It was there that I first encountered someone who considers herself to be “True/Classic Transsexual” and can always be depended upon to trash TG folks,. Only in those days she wasn’t so certain about herself. Indeed. Her self description was, “More than a transvestite and less than a transsexual.”
Guess what, I’m perfectly fine with that and I’m equally fine with her coming to a greater understanding of self and going on to get SRS. There are as many ways to be trans as there are people who have to deal with conditions that have trans as a prefix.
I left the Usenet about a year or so after having first found my way there. When I left people were engaging in a level of violence that was crossing over from the virtual world into 3D.
I was on a mailing list called “Trans-theory” ostensibly run by the rarely present Stephan Whittle. This list was subjected to a prolonged attack by a cabal that was using various tactic to defame and degrade women of a transsexual history by dividing us into androphiles and autogynephiles. A pair of rather meaningless pathologies that degraded both those who were defined as AP or AGP.
About this time I met Stephan Whittle at a conference in Burbank and had several extended conversations with him. While he was more supportive of the Transgender Umbrella paradigm than I was he came off as sincere and sane. Someone I could disagree with and not have it turn into a major war filled with personal slander. The cabal went after him with serious allegations and in a manner of ad hominem attacks that resulted in his abandoning the mailing list.
Members of this same cabal launched numerous attacks directed toward emotionally injuring me including personal threats.
As a result Tina and I founded the Women Born Transsexual Mailing list.
At its onset it seemed to attract people who would later leave to form the HBS/Classic Transsexual faction.
Over the course of some 8 years the list also attracted people who would go to great lengths not only to join the list as an individual but created sock puppets for the purpose of disrupting the list.
Not that the list needed much disruption as every post-SRS sister has her own firm opinions of what constitutes a “proper transsexual”. Some of the issues that tore the list apart included those who thought lesbian sisters should support heterosexual sisters marriage rights and not fight for same sex marriage.
We were visited by Charlotte Goiar, who insisted we start using “Benjamin Syndrome” instead of transsexual. I was skeptical and pointed out that while Transsexual was commonly abbreviated as TS, Benjamin Syndrome would be abbreviated as BS which in American slang stood for Bull Shit.
When I started this blog a couple of years ago all the usual trolls showed up.
Fortunately Andrea James who was kind enough to give my blog an initial push which really helped me get rolling had a bunch of information on a couple of the trolls as well as several people people notably Kiira Tirea who were part of the original cabal.
I wasn’t about to let my new blog become hostage to these people so I immediately slapped them on moderation.
As a result I have several people who devote an inordinate amount of time to trashing me for not wanting to be part of their “Classic Transsexual/HBS” club.
You see I’ve pretty well come to the conclusion that the vast majority of people do not get SRS on a lark or as part of some sort of thrill. I also believe many who recant have fallen under the spell of some religious cult.
Others should have been excluded from SRS based on mental illness.
But most of us got SRS for the simple reason of having been born Transsexual.
We coped with having been born with transsexualism in a number of different ways. Some of us were obvious as kids, others were not. Some of us had sex with men, some with women before SRS. Some of us had marriages in our assigned at birth sex and others had relationships that might have been heterogendered while being technically homosexual.
Some may have been asexual before and asexual after. Some are more taken with adhering to a rigidly defined gender role than others.
Some people have way too much time on their hands and use it to trash others.
I’m giving a shout out to Elizabeth of the Blog, Notes from the T side Like me, she has been around for many years. We were even in Los Angeles at the same time in the 1970s although I don’t think our paths crossed. We were also both patients of Dr. Benjamin. From what I have read of her blog she seems like good people. Coincidentally she is being attacked by some of the same people who came here and messed with my blog when I first started it.
Pay her a visit. I’m going to give her a link on my Blog Roll.
I took the Photo above a few weeks before Harvey milk was murdered along with Mayor Moscone.
Harvey was the first openly gay person elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. He was a tireless campaigner for the civil rights of Gay and Lesbian people. He was speaking at a campaign rally in Los Angeles in opposition to prop, The Briggs Amendment which would have banned gay and lesbian people from teaching in the state of California.
The year was 1978 and we defeated that piece of hate legislation.
Less than a month later Dan White, who had previously resigned from the board of Supervisors sneaked into San Francisco City Hall and premeditatedly murdered Harvey Milk and Mayor Moscone.
He used a sketchy defense of diminished capacity due to eating Twinkies. He was an ex-cop and a good straight Irish Catholic lad and so he got a slap on the wrist.
The gays staged a huge riot, burned dozens of cop cars and trashed the area around City Hall.
After the pathetic murderer got out he served justice by killing himself.
By Barbra Streisand, Huffington Post
Posted on November 23, 2010, Printed on November 27, 2010
Women have broken through some of the hardest glass ceilings. We’ve had women explore the depths of outer space, a woman run for President of the United States, and we’ve had a woman serving as Speaker of the House, a position that is just two heartbeats away from the Presidency. Many consider politics as one of the last bastions of the boys club and thankfully — although slowly — women are finally making real inroads.
But there is another boys club that until recently many people either didn’t know about or talk about. It came as a big shock to me to discover that gender inequality still prevails in the medical sciences when it comes to research and treatment of some illnesses. I consider myself a well-informed person, but I only became aware of this fact when learning about women and heart disease, and I was stunned.
Heart disease is the number one killer of women in our country, more than all cancers combined. Today, heart disease kills more women than men. When I started to think about this, it was not surprising. More women are taking on the stresses of juggling household demands, of being wife, mother and breadwinner. All of these modern day strains add to higher blood pressure, lack of physical activity, quick and unhealthy food choices, and weight gain — all major contributors to heart disease.
Despite the statistics, for years, most of the medical community has been treating our mothers, wives, daughters, sisters and friends inadequately because they based their treatment protocols on research outcomes done mostly on male patients. Cardiologists treating women certainly intended to provide their patients with quality care, but they could only depend on the research that was available and known to them.
From The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/27/backlash-feared-as-some-i_n_788753.html
JOHN HANNA | 11/26/10 03:06 PM |
TOPEKA, Kan. — Although fixing the economy is the top priority, Republicans who won greater control of state governments in this month’s election are considering how to pursue action on a range of social issues, including abortion, gun rights and even divorce laws.
Incoming GOP governors and legislative leaders across the nation insist they intend to focus initially on fiscal measures to spur the economy, cut spending and address state budget problems.
“At this point, the economy dominates everything, and until the economy is turned around and our fiscal house put in order, there’s not going to be a lot of appetite for anything else,” said Whit Ayres, a pollster in Alexandria, Va., whose firm did research for several GOP candidates in the midterm race.
But the pressure to go further, as soon as possible, is only slightly below the surface in states where conservatives’ top social goals have been foiled for years by Democratic vetoes and legislative obstacles.
Continue reading at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/27/backlash-feared-as-some-i_n_788753.html