Amy Goodman gets grilled by Canadian border officials

I didn’t realize this was still happening now that Bush and Cheney were gone.

Amy Goodman (of Democracy Now!) was stopped by Canadian border guards as she tried to cross into Canada in order to speak at a couple of functions. She was held for over 90 minutes and was issued a “control” document, basically a temporary visa. She and her crew were photographed and told they had to show proof of leaving Canada by midnight today.

She felt quite threatened. As they were held, the guards went through their car and actually went into their computers. Specifically, the officials demanded to know if Amy Goodman was going to speak against hosting the 2010 Olympic games in Canada. It is quite chilling listening to her description of what happened. She was unaware of being on a ‘watch list’, but now wonders.

In this video Goodman also went into some detail about her arrest at the Republican convention in Minneapolis while there covering the protests.While listening to her describe what happened at the Canadian border,  I couldn’t help thinking the guards were sending her a strong message meant to intimidate her, warning her somehow to watch the content of her speech she was about to give. It just doesn’t sound like a friendly, open society. She felt violated.

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Listening to Goodman speak reminded me of the old German Nazi films, and the Gestapo saying… “Your papers please..?”


Sifton: “Up to 100 detainees have died in US custody”

Raw Story:

Any torture investigation should focus on the deaths of approximately 100 prisoners who were in U.S. custody, says attorney and human rights investigator John Sifton. Senate torture hearings have examined the effectiveness of enhanced interrogation techniques but Sifton says this is the wrong focus. “Those are the wrong debates to be having right now,” Sifton told Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman.

“We knew that up to a hundred detainees had died in US custody in Iraq and Afghanistan, and we had published this information previously. But I brought it up again, because I feel like the debate right now about torture is missing the point,” he said.

“These aggressive techniques were not just limited to the high-value detainee program in the CIA. They spread to the military with disastrous results. They led to the deaths of human beings. And when there’s a corpse involved, when there’s a dead body involved, you can’t just have a debate about policy differences and looking forward or looking backward.”

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Read the article in The Daily Beast by John Sifton entitled “The Bush Administration Homicides“.

Robert Scheer of TruthDig on Democracy Now!

Veteran Journalist Robert Scheer, of TruthDig, is a guest on Democracy Now! and discusses the AIG Bonuses, the “Backdoor Bailout” and Why Obama Should Fire Geithner, Summers. This interview, seriously, is a must see.

Perp Walks Instead of Bonuses“:

There must be a criminal investigation of the AIG debacle, and it looks as if New York’s top lawman is on the case. The collusion to save this toxic company in order to salvage the rogue financiers who conspired to enrich themselves by impoverishing millions is being revealed as the greatest financial scandal in U.S. history. Instead of taking bonuses, the culprits should be taking perp walks… Read this excellent piece.

Part 1:

Part 2:

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There go the judges…

To put this cartoon in context, from cartoonist John Cole:

87 months in federal prison probably isn’t long enough for Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan. The two former Luzerne County judges pleaded guilty Thursday afternoon in federal court to fraud and kickback charges relating to a privately owned juvenile detention center.

The two admitted to receiving $2.6 million in kickbacks from the center’s owners, but Ciavarella maintains there was no quid-pro-quo in the scheme. However, given the rate at which he shipped juveniles off to detention (roughly one in four, or about 2.5 times higher than the state average), it sure looks like some form of back-scratching was going on.

The feds didn’t include this quid-pro-quo in their case yesterday. But Assistant U.S. Attorney Gordon Zubrod says he and his team still firmly believe one occurred and will present that to a federal judge when Ciavarella and Conahan are sentenced later this year.

Jailing Kids for Cash – by Amy Goodman (also posted at TruthDig)

As many as 5,000 children in Pennsylvania have been found guilty, and up to 2,000 of them jailed, by two corrupt judges who received kickbacks from the builders and owners of private prison facilities that benefited. The two judges pleaded guilty in a stunning case of greed and corruption that is still unfolding. Judges Mark A. Ciavarella Jr. and Michael T. Conahan received $2.6 million in kickbacks while imprisoning children who often had no access to a lawyer. The case offers an extraordinary glimpse into the shameful private prison industry that is flourishing in the United States…

In the article by Amy Goodman, she writes about two young people and their experiences under these judges.. This is unbelievable. So, is this the ‘free market’ at work?

Tennessee Landowners File $165M Suit Over Massive Coal Ash Spill

Democracy Now!

Landowners in Tennessee have filed a $165 million lawsuit against the Tennessee Valley Authority in the wake of last week’s massive spill of over one billion gallons of toxic coal ash next to a coal-burning steam plant. The sludge spilled out of a coal plant retention pond, burying homes and roads. It is believed to be the largest coal ash disaster in US history. The amount of ash released would fill 450,000 standard dump trucks.

Goodman’s guest in this interview is Matt Landon, a volunteer with United Mountain Defense, a Knoxville, Tennessee-based environmental group. The group has been on the ground at the site of the coal ash spill since last week.

The transcript of this interview.

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You all might be interested in reading this:
Coal Ash Is More Radioactive than Nuclear Waste (from the Scientific American)

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CNN Sanchez: Amy Goodman on Barack Obama

Amy Goodman speaks on the first African-American president-elect Barack Obama visiting the White House which was built by slaves. President Bush’s use of well over 1,000 signing statements and President Obama signing an executive order to shut down the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Amy Goodman interviews Mark Crispin Miller

The Raw Story

Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman talked to Mark Crispin Miller about a Republican contractor who has been required to testify about his connection to possible fraud concerning the 2004 presidential election. Crispin Miller points to reporting by RAW STORY to help explain the details of why this Republican contractor, Mike Connell, could be so important.

The full transcript of Mark Crispin Miller’s interview is available here.

This testimony that Mark Crispin Miller refers to is connected to this previous post from earlier today.

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