Category Archives: history

The Olympics are Around the Corner…

The political salience of sport has increased dramatically in the past 30 years. Governments in regimes of every type have shown a new willingness to invest and intervene in sport directly, steer and develop sport policy more purposefully, and, recently, engage in bidding for and hosting sports mega-events. With the London 2012 Olympics on the horizon, it is an apt time to reflect on the reasons behind the increasing politicisation of sport and sports mega-events, and the increasing competition between states to host an Olympic Games, FIFA World Cup or one of the smaller international competitions, such as the Commonwealth Games.

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Voter Suppression, the New Black

It’s kind of sad that we, as Americans, are basically forced to go outside of our traditional media outlets for alternative viewpoints. Something tells me you’d only find a story like this in American media AFTER an election, or in a MoveOn spam. Anyway, I think it’s interesting what people can get away with, legally, in the name of democracy. Same ole sh!t, though, basically.

I like the historical slant…

In the 1964 presidential elections, a young political operative named Bill guarded a largely African-American polling place in South Phoenix, Arizona like a bull mastiff.

Bill was a legal whiz who knew the ins and outs of voting law and insisted that every obscure provision be applied, no matter what. He even made those who spoke accented English interpret parts of the constitution to prove that they understood it. The lines were long, people fought, got tired or had to go to work, and many of them left without voting. It was a notorious episode long remembered in Phoenix political circles.

It turned out that it was part of a Republican Party strategy known as “Operation Eagle Eye”, and “Bill” was future Supreme Court Justice William Rehnquist. He was confronted with his intimidation tactics in his confirmation hearings years later, and characterised his behaviour as simple arbitration of polling place disputes. In doing so, he set a standard for GOP dishonesty and obfuscation surrounding voting rights that continues to this day. #read the rest at Al Jazeera

The Encyclodpedia of

Check out a thorough collection of articles about 9/11 via NYMAG‘s Encyclopedia of 9/11.

What Dinh didn’t anticipate was a profound shift in liberalism and, therefore, in the politics of the country. Even with a Democrat now in the White House, the liberalism that protects the right of the individual against the majority—the politics of civil rights and abortion and gay marriage—has diminished, in favor of one that aims to improve the lot of the median man. Obama’s liberalism is for the majority, not against it. This spirit, and the unlikely endurance of the Patriot Act, owes something to the central psychological events of the decade: the vitality and threat of new economic competitors, the social violence initiated by the authors of obscure financial instruments, but first and most of all September 11—each of which evoked a particular feeling, that we were all together, under attack. .::Patriot Act

Massaging the Curriculum: A Texas Guide to Rewriting History

I haven’t much to say about this besides that you should read the article.  Part of me thinks it’s scary, another part of me thinks that it’s always scary when you see sausage being made.

I mean… I remember that in school we colored in pictures of happy “Pilgrims” and “Indians. “  Sometimes feeling like you were lied to can be more dramatic than not.

McLeroy moved that Margaret Sanger, the birth-control pioneer, be included because she “and her followers promoted eugenics,” that language be inserted about Ronald Reagan’s “leadership in restoring national confidence” following Jimmy Carter’s presidency and that students be instructed to “describe the causes and key organizations and individuals of the conservative resurgence of the 1980s and 1990s, including Phyllis Schlafly, the Contract With America, the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority and the National Rifle Association.” The injection of partisan politics into education went so far that at one point another Republican board member burst out in seemingly embarrassed exasperation, “Guys, you’re rewriting history now!” Nevertheless, most of McLeroy’s proposed amendments passed by a show of hands.

Finally, the board considered an amendment to require students to evaluate the contributions of significant Americans. The names proposed included Thurgood Marshall, Billy Graham, Newt Gingrich, William F. Buckley Jr., Hillary Rodham Clinton and Edward Kennedy. All passed muster except Kennedy, who was voted down.

This is how history is made — or rather, how the hue and cry of the present and near past gets lodged into the long-term cultural memory or else is allowed to quietly fade into an inaudible whisper. Public education has always been a battleground between cultural forces; one reason that Texas’ school-board members find themselves at the very center of the battlefield is, not surprisingly, money. The state’s $22 billion education fund is among the largest educational endowments in the country. LINK

They say history is written by the victors.  Given how frequently we accuse our politicians of attempting to rewrite history, nay, how frequently they do, maybe we should begin to say that the victors are also written by history.

McBush

So, while this entire Daily Show clip is pretty hilarious [obviously], around the 4 min 30 sec mark there’s a direct comparison between McCain’s acceptance speech and G Dubya’s – ridiculous. Maybe the Republicans should hire new speech writers? Just a thought.

Plus, that was a shitload of balloons, my people.

.:via The Daily Show ->

mumia is still not free

… but he got his death sentence overturned.

mumiapanthers1970.jpg

whats really good though, they decided he needs a new sentencing hearing but not a new trial? Its dope that he wont be on death row anymore, but this seems in a lot of ways like a bogus concession to make it seem like the justus system is doing the right thing when the actual trial was what was completely jacked up, not–objections to the death penalty in general aside–the sentencing.

anyways this post probably belongs on the politricks page, but here are some of Mumia’s thoughts on hip-hop music…

Check out the documentary A Case for Reasonable Doubt in its entirety here.

Framing the Issue

Once again Charles Krauthammer makes me want to vomit.

Today’s interpretation of Barack Obama’s superb address on race and his pastor, Jeremiah Wright, this past week is vial and no more than a clever attempt at framing the issue. Krauthammer seems to imply that all of Wright’s speeches are volatile and venomous. He seems to want to believe that week after week Barack and Michelle Obama would bring their children to hear someone speak ill of America and sow the seeds of racial hatred. He wants to believe that Wright wasn’t a man who could get caught up in the intensity of sermon and perhaps loose sight of what he was saying. He wants to believe, like so many others, that this pastor is not a man of the Christian faith at all, but a man full of hatred and contempt for whites and America. Well, ninjas ain’t that stupid.

Krauthammer asks:

Why did you give $22,500 just two years ago to a church run by a man of the past who infects the younger generation with precisely the racial attitudes and animus you say you have come unto us to transcend?

Do you, Krauthammer, truly believe that Jeremiah Wright is a one faceted, America hating machine? Or will you acknowledge that as a pastor he, week after week, speaks of the gospels, of peace, of love, of truth and of unity? That he, too, would like nothing more than a nation indivisible, but that his observations and understanding of the past and present has made him realize that there is much moral and social progress to be made.

His language, at times, may not have been chosen with the utmost attention to political correctness, as yours and mine surely is. But he is neither politician nor pundit, he is a pastor. And Barack Obama has made it clear throughout this entire campaign that he is a rational, intelligent, independent and thorough thinker. The bottom line is: this relationship is of no concern in political discourse. If it is, then let’s talk about McCain asking Hague to support him.
And that whole thing about crack, well, let’s be real. As my ninja, Orange Menace, said “You think some hood from the PJs invented crack?” Who’s to say. But take a look at the sentences given for those involved with crack versus the much more expensive cocaine and you got yourself a f*cked up situation.

Disclaimer

I just wanted to make sure you ninjas understand that just because over here in the dojo we may throw a post up about a conservative topic, this in no way means that we prescribe to the atrocious neo-conservative movement that plagues politics today. Just because you see Reagan here doesn’t mean I think he’s a great guy (he certainly was not a ninja). I think understanding what he started is critical for ninjas to grasp. Know thy enemy, right? Conservatism has come a long way since Sir Edmund Burke and the Glorious Revolution.

I Know You’re Out There

I know you’re reading the site, ninjas. I know, you come back, too. I even know some of you are hooked. What I don’t know is why I don’t hear more from you. Your input is always greatly appreciated and respected and I’d love to see some brave ninjas start expressing your opinions about what is posted here. You can comment on every post or you can send me an email here at philsalterego @myninjaplease.com So, hop to it.

What a Surprise

junta2.jpg

Old news by now, but just in case you missed it. Raul Castro was unanimously elected as Cuba’s new preisdent yesterday. Raul has been acting as President since Fidel’s intestinal surgery in 2006 sidelined him from official duties. The vote yesterday just made his title official. Many hope that Raul with at least begin to open Cuba up to state-run capitalism (oh-so different from socialism?) and help create a connection with the international community that was not allowed to exist because they didn’t want to deal with Fidel.

[pictuerd above: Ernesto 'Che' Guevara, Raul Castro, Fidel Castro]

Someone send this man a history book

Turns out I was wrong, Dick Cheney is interested in diplomacy. His definition of it leaves a tiny bit to be desired, though…

Well, I would love to have one giant peace conference, to see our adversaries come sit down on the other side of the table, and negotiate a treaty here — like we did at the end of World War II onboard the USS Missouri — and have the problem solved.

Seriously, he said this. Now, those of us who have opened a history book from time to time know that the “peace conference” on the Missouri was preceded by this:

tokyo

This:

a-bomb

And this:

hiroshima

Take a moment to really consider the implications of that quote, though. The Vice President of the United States either truly doesn’t understand basic facts about American history; or he thinks that the only way to negotiate with one’s enemies is to firebomb and nuke them into complete submission first. Neither is exactly encouraging.