Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Heartbreaking news

It may be in the Hampshire Review this morning, but there is some sad, though hardly unexpected, news about the lawsuit that the Committee to Reform Hampshire County Government brought against the West Virginia legislature (in which I am a plaintiff).

The battle is over, seven years after we began the campaign to change our county government, as the WV Constitution allows local citizens to do, in Article IX, Section 13. Last week, the WV Supreme Court voted 3-2 to decline our petition to rehear the case, which they had decided on December 12, 2008, in favor of the legislature, reversing three separate circuit court decisions in favor of us, the plaintiffs. It was a “political” ruling, which you can read more about in my posts, “Reflections on a lawsuit” (9/29/08), and “Supreme Court injustice” (1/26/09). You can read all the legal documents in the case at the Historic Hampshire website (

It’s ironic, because the two newest justices on the court, Margaret Workman and Menis Ketchum, voted to rehear the case. If it were not for the grave illness of the court’s other “liberal” member, which kept him away from the bench both last week and when the case was heard in October, we may very well have won, and true democracy would still be alive in West Virginia. Article IX, Section 13 is one of the most democratic provisions in any state constitution in the country. This is a major loss for the people of this state.

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I’ve been gratified by the very thoughtful comments that have come in about “Obama and 9/11,” both here and on other sites where it has run. I want to congratulate that sly guy “viddal,” who figured out that what I really wanted to do was send a letter to Obama, and this was just my way of doing it. Your prize is, I answer your question about the quote from the film reviewer.

He is Antony Beevor, who wrote a column in the 1/18/09 London Sunday Times (a Rupert Murdoch publication, I believe) inspired by the 9/11 truth movie, “Loose Change,” in which he spoke of the phenomenon of “counter-knowledge,” which he defined as “the propagation of totally false legends,” and gave as an example, “the 9/11 attack on New York was orchestrated by the Bush administration.”

He went on to write, “Studies of internet sites reveal an unholy alliance between left-wing 9/11 conspiracy theorists, right-wing Holocaust deniers and Islamic fundamentalists.” (And if you extend the logic, that means that truthers are ultimately also in alliance with the CIA. May the circle be unbroken.)

Beevor concludes, “It may sound alarmist when one talks of their attempts to fragment proven reality. Yet the effects of counter-knowledge and pseudo-history might develop a bigger threat to liberal democracy than the authoritarian onslaughts of Stalin and Hitler.”

Gosh, thanks, Mr. Beevor! Especially if by “liberal democracy,” you mean “global fascism,” which—since you’re working for Rupert Murdoch—I think you do.

I wanted to bring attention to one other comment, from Ivan Hecko, whose comment is worth reading in its entirety because he is a disciplined thinker and who, because he lives in Slovakia, knows whereof he speaks when he gives, in his concluding paragraph, “a small final remark concerning the present ‘freedom of the media’ in the US: during the so-called communist regime the censorship of all the media was absolute. Yet the percentage of people who knew what was really going on in the country was much higher than in the US today.”

Munch on that, boys and girls.

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Finally, if the Matrix really gave us the news, the biggest story on every network today would be the interview that George Washington, the indispensable man, published at his blog, with Terrell E. Arnold, former Deputy Director of the Office of Counter-terrorism and Emergency Planning at the US State Department, and former Chairman of the Department of International Studies at the National War College. Arnold thinks that the “collapse” of the World Trade Center violated the laws of physics, among other astonishing things. I found GW at, which also linked to the Online Journal version of “Obama and 9/11 2” yesterday. Thanks, guys.

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