It's January 20th and today I finally find out if I get my Christmas wish. Yes, the excitement of the inauguration of Obama adds a special lustre to the day, but his election was already a done deal by Christmas. For Christmas, I made a wish for the nation.
What I really wanted for Christmas is accountability for the Bush Administration. If I get my wish, as soon as he has taken the oath of office, Obama will order Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and a few others (Gonzalez and Yoo, for two) to be immediately taken into custody and tried for their War Crimes against the world and the American people.
Obama has talked a great deal about "moving forward," but I would argue that it will be impossible to move forward until we deal with the sorry spectacle of the past eight years. The election of Obama stunned the world precisely because we lived up to our ideals. In doing that we regained some of the authority we once had in the world.
However, in order to fully regain our moral authority in the world we must clean our own house. We have committed torture, we have engaged in acts that are direct violations of treaties we have signed. We have also admitted it. Cheney even seemed to brag about it. To let it go without prosecution is to make a mockery of our values.
Imagine the reaction of the world should we prosecute these miscreants who have sullied our reputation and made us a lawless and feared pariah on the world stage. Stating that no one is above the law, especially those in government, would allow the U.S. to once again exhibit the ideals that have drawn countless people to our shores.
Over the past eight years this nation has come as close to fascism as I hope it ever gets. If Bush and the rest of his administration is allowed to fade into history without answering for their crimes, we the people, will be the ultimate victims. Our nation will be permanently damaged and the scars will continue to grow as history begins to realize what happened in our country during the Bush II years.
Okay, so I don't really think that Obama will have Bush taken into custody at the inauguration. I will continue to let this Christmas wish be deferred for a little longer. But if we fail to act as a nation, if we do not address the wrongs, the crimes, the evil that has been committed in our name, we will NEVER be a great nation again.
In order to move forward, we must first address the past. If this is allowed to pass, no matter the success of the Obama Administration, we will forever join the list of nations that have sanctioned torture and rationalized war crimes.
In the next few days I will present the case for war crimes trials against the Bush Administration. Further, I will also establish the case for the rest of the world to act against Bush et. al should the U.S. fail to act.
British Petroleum Gulf Oil Spill Costs
- 11 workers killed in initial blast
- Damage to Ocean Ecosystem
- 35,000 to 60.000 Barrels of Oil Per Day. That's somewhere between 1,500,000 to 2,500,000 gallons a day or 150 to 300 million gallons already spilled into the ocean as of July 27th by that estimate.
- Gulf Fisheries Industry
- Gulf Tourism (ongoing costs)
- Long Term Health Effects to Humans and Wildlife (to be determined)
Worst Oil Spills
- Kuwait 1991 - 520 million gallons: Gulf War I
- Gulf of Mexico 2010 - 206 million gallons: BP Oil
- Mexico, Bay of Campiche 1979 - 140 million gallons: Pemex Oil
- Trinidad & Tobago 1979 - 90 million gallons: Greek Oil Tanker Atlantic Empress
- Russia 1983 - 84 million gallons: Leaky Pipeline collapsed into Kolva River
- Iran 1983 - 80 million gallons: Tanker collided with Oil Platform
- South Africa 1983 -79 million gallons:Tanker Castillo de Bellver sank
- France 1978 - 69 million Gallons: Amoco Cadiz ran aground and broke in half.
- Angola Coastal Waters (700 miles at sea) 1991 - 51-81 million gallons: ABT Summer exploded at sea.
- Italy 1991 - 45 million gallons: M/T Haven Oil Tanker exploded.
- Source: Mother Nature Network. mnn.com. The 13 largest oil spills in history. by Laura Moss. Friday July 16, 2010.
Nuclear Accidents (Under Construction)
- 1957 Windscale, UK
- 1961 Idaho Falls, Idaho, US
- 1979 Three Mile Island, Pennsylvania, US
- 1984 Athens, Alabama, US
- 1985 Athens, Alabama, US
- 1986 Plymouth, Masachusetts, US
- 1986 Chernobyl, Ukraine, USSR
- 1996 Waterford, Connecticut, US
- 1989 Griefwald, Germany
- 1999 Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan
- 2002 Oak Harbor, Ohio, US
- 2004 Fukui Prefecture, Japan
- Source: Benjamin Sovacool
Mining Disasters (Under Construction)
- China 1942 - 1549 deaths
- France 1906 - 1100 deaths
- Japan 1963 - 447 deaths
- Wales 1913 - 438 deaths
- South Africa 1960 - 437 deaths
- Source: Epic Disasters Website
- Note: Do not look at the dates herein and conclue that mining disasters are a things of the past. Every year thousands of miners die worldwide in largely unreported accidents.
OIL IS OVER! - Resources
- The Dirt People - Ray Bawarchi (yes, that's me)
- The Razor's Edge - Somerset Maugham
- Demian - Herman Hesse
- Black Elk Speaks - Black Elk (as told to R. Neimur)
- The Quiet Don - Mikhail Sholokov
- Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger
- Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
- 1984 - George Orwell
- Delicious Laughter - Jallahudin Rumi
- The Sybil - Par Lagerksvitz
- The Fixer - Bernard Malamud
- Spirits Rebellious - Khalil Gibran
- The Quiet American - Graham Greene
- Midaq Alley - Nagib Mafouz
- Cat's Cradle - Kurt Vonnegut
- Slaughterhouse 5 - Kurt Vonnegut
- Farenheit 451- Ray Bradbury
- We - Yevgeny Zamyatin
- John Coltrane - St. John the Divine
- Patti Smith
- The Clash - the only band that matters
- Billy Bragg
- Yo Mama's Big Fat Booty Band
- Art Blakey
- Death - pre-punk visionaries from Detroit
- PJ Harvey - Polly Jean, Polly Jean
- Woody Guthrie
- Michael Franti (Spearhead)
- Public Enemy
- Ray Charles - the Genius
- Bob Dylan
- Velvet Underground
- Flaming Lips
- John Doe & X
- The Beatles
opiate of the masses
- God is a comedian, playing to an audience too afraid to laugh. - Voltaire
- I do not feel obliged to believe that the same god who has endowed us with sense, reason and inellect has intended us to forgo their use. - Galileo Galilei
- The ink of a scholar is worth far more than the blood of a martyr.- Mohammad
- If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. - Sheldon Kopp
- No one will be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest. - Louisa Mae Alcott
- When it is a question of money, everyone is of the same religion.- Voltaire
- If God were alive today, he'd be an athiest. - Kurt Vonnegut
- The god I worship is not short of cash, Mister. - Bono
- Jesus died for somebody's sins, but not mine. My sins they only belong to me. - Patti Smith
- God sure baked a lot of fruitcake baby, when Adam met the Eden lady. - Joe Strummer