The Most Dangerous Man in America (Video)

I had to remember how much I despised intelligence-gathering. I can’t decide if Dana Priest and William Arkin are fools, serviceable or otherwise. There are moral limits to human perfectibility, beyond which lies something that is incomprehensibly other than human.

I had another chance to watch the excellent documentary about Daniel Ellsberg, The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers.


Here I am, at the end of an epic month, sipping from a bloody mary at the "Cascade's" in the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport... The effects of the vodka from the first drink are setting in, warming my spine and calming my nerves, sliding me into the inevitability of sitting in a metal tube for 12 and then 2 hours whilst breathing in the farts of a good 300 people. Yum. Airline poo-air.

Cohen brought me to the airport, resplendent in a large red shirt that is already too-baggy on his rapidly-shrinking frame: 80 pounds down and more to go. The man has a plan and is exectuting it - well on him. It's a PERFECT northwest summer day - a bright blue blanket of sky with the sun showering the top of Mt. Rainier. No doubt folks are packing up, heading to beaches and mountains and forests to enjoy the best of what this part of the world has to offer; I instead must leave, and head back to the pseudo-tropical environs of Korea in the last grips of the rainy season.

If the ROK-US Alliance Were a Picture…

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, center, and U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, second from right, are briefed at the truce village of Panmunjom in the demilitarized zone that separates the two Koreas. (Pool photo by Paul J. Richards)…it would look spruce. But, really, this looks like damage control.

U.S. officials said they expect an announcement Wednesday of “country-specific sanctions” against North Korea. One official described them as “strong,” and said they would target banks and other institutions but declined to be more specific.

American Business Turns Sour on China

James Mann punctures the inevitable “truthiness” of the freer trade position with a report on how “Corporate America Turns Against China”.

American and European companies have vied for centuries, through all of China’s upheavals, to dominate what used to be called “the China market.” Now, increasingly, China wants to keep that market for itself.

It opened up to foreign companies in the 1980s and 1990s not because it believed in free trade or because it thought the visitors were wise and wonderful, but rather because it wanted their technology and know-how. But China no longer needs the multinational companies as it once did. The Chinese government has proved ever more adept at running an industrial policy that privileges its own companies, many of them state-owned.

The Truth about Tax Cuts and Deficits (Video)

It’s a re day when The Economist and Rachel Maddow agree. But, tax cuts swell the Federal budget deficit.

Half of the Truth Squared, Reconciled by Addition

The ROK Truth and Reconciliation Commission investigating civilian deaths during the Korean War is nearly finished, but any conclusions it reaches are undercut by a glaring problem.

The commission was handicapped from its inception by political battles between liberals and conservatives. One of the most contentious issues of all was how to deal with wartime killings by American forces.

The eight mass killings that the commission determined as unlawful and eligible for compensation by Washington were all investigated by commissioners appointed under Mr. Roh’s government.

Will Palin Run for President in 2012? (Video)

A bit off-blog for me, but I found this diavlog informative. I generally treat discussions like Anthea Butler’s and Sarah Posner’s like reading a cross between fantasy and sociology , only the religion is more a part of American life and the weirdness at the beginning of the story metastasizes instead of being explained. I share Butler’s view because the MSM has become an easier gig for the “craven”.

The IMF Is Coming!

The IMF is back in town! Hide the gold and jewelry! Really, the IMF is back in the ROK to make amends. WangKon936′s original posts on the “IMF Crisis” and this old piece by Joseph Stiglitz (in lieu of a review I wrote of book-length treatment from a grad school class) are useful backgrounders on why the IMF feels so contrite. It seems the IMF learned about burnishing its image and allowing others to criticize it.

The UNSC Cheonan Statement Is a Gift the US Doesn’t Deserve

I’m not surprised. Dismayed, yes. But, strangely I feel vindicated.

Friday’s U.N. Security Council statement condemning the March sinking the South Korean warship Cheonan, but not fingering the culprit, may look like another example of the grubby compromises required to close a deal here.

But it could have been a lot worse.

In the final stages of the closed door negotiations of the text, North Korea’s veto-wielding champion, China’s U.N. envoy Li Baodong, sought to gut the statement of any language that even hinted at North Korean responsibility, diplomats familiar with the talks told Turtle Bay.

The Ugly Education Model

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