American Killers 126

For those of us who grew up thinking of American culture as related closely to our own, it is quite hard to come to terms with the fact that there is a very substantial strand to US popular culture that makes it a danger to the entire world, and requires a dedicated worldwide effort at containment and reorientation.

If you have any doubt of that, just read the comments here in the LA Times. We know Perry is an arse, but look at what LA Times readers “think”. And remember the LA Times is at the liberal end of the spectrum, insofar as the US has one.

There are more Americans locked up in jails than citizens of any other developed country. Unfortunately, largely the wrong ones.

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126 thoughts on “American Killers

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  • Fedup

    “Snark? No website or blog i can see.”

    There is the Yank coming through, Mark Golding contributing here and elsewhere, may not find a need for keeping his own blog, hence read what he has written here (archives), or keep any eye out for his comments.

  • crab

    Ah so the originaly offended cool dagger prompts the argy bargy 911 topic like a innocent ‘newbie’. ‘please advise’ rrright.. pretty ot man. Nope we all believe your governments line on that one Ben. You guys really socked it to em ‘n all.

  • Levantine

    Ben Franklin: “The disappointment over Obama amongst the Progressive wing of the Democrats, has created a false image of the man, Ron Paul. It’s true he champions many causes we find neglected, but it is pot vs kettle.”
    What you wrote is one opinion, and what you quoted to back it up is an ideological portrayal.
    Its first sentence: “Libertarians hold that individual liberty should never be sacrificed in the pursuit of other values or causes.”
    Well, firstly, the really important values are those you have and serve, not those you pursue. If liberty has any sense, it’s about liberty to be something – a human being with values and causes. So, this criticism is nonsense, in my view.
    Ron Paul’s 2002 warnings: If he’s just like others, surely you can show me where other US politicians have spoken like this.

  • Ben Franklin

    “Ah so the originaly offended cool dagger prompts the argy bargy 911 topic like a innocent ‘newbie’. ‘please advise’ rrright.. pretty ot man. Nope we all believe your governments line on that one Ben. You guys really socked it to em ‘n all.”

    Sorry. I think you’re telling me to bugger off, but I can’t be sure. My question is genuine. Take it or leave it.

  • Ben Franklin


    I count myself above average in reading comprehension, but I need some help with your words,

    “Well, firstly, the really important values are those you have and serve, not those you pursue. If liberty has any sense, it’s about liberty to be something – a human being with values and causes. So, this criticism is nonsense, in my view.”

    Ron Paul’s values are totally about personal liberty. Anything, and I mean ANYTHING which impinges on personal liberty is bad. Is there something I’ve missed in your post?

  • Fedup

    Ben Franklin,
    What is the best way of destroying the tracks in the age of information technologies?
    An amalgam of half truths, and plausible lies, injected into the debate.
    Facts are;
    – A constable perambulating in the forests suddenly came across the bits of “circuit” and lo and behold he knew the bits of innocuous electronics were the key to solving the Pan Am crash. (not referred to)
    – The Maltese shopkeeper, could not identify the culprit, and had to be coached (referred to in a bizarre fashion)
    – Ulrich Lumpert and his false testimony are highlighted, (google this) but for what reason?

    – The Iranian, backed Palestinian (the story of Iran hired Syrian Hooker with a torpedo up her butt, Iranian 2nd hand car dealer taking a contract out with the Mexican Drug Cartel, the pattern by now should be familiar to everyone)at the beginning, before most people have become bored and left the “literary work”.
    – The curious flechettes rounds (the pic is lifted fro the site of which is conflated with the sewing machine needles (the pic is of a paper clip and a flechette, used in artillery shells purely for killing personnel, Isrealis use it on Palestinians regularly) somehow is woven into the mix.

    – ramblings unending.
    Therefore we can safely assume, Megrahi was not the bomber, Gaddafi was shaken down, and billions were extorted from him (not that it did him any good in the long run) and a bombing case was closed.
    As in case of 9/11, 7/1, Pearl Harbour, the injections of calculated lies and untruths are designed to create controversy and mayhem to cover-up the plain truths, and save the necks of the bastards who would otherwise find themselves at the end of a swinging rope.

  • Mary

    Tonight on Radio 4 at 8.00 pm
    Three Generations of Incarceration
    Gary Younge travels to Los Angeles to hear the story of one family who has had three generations pass through America’s criminal justice system. The United States is the world’s leader in incarceration with 2.3 million people currently in the nation’s prisons or jails, and the Gamble family is just one family in that story. Jeffrey Gamble’s father spent time in jail, his brother’s Ricky and Mike are set to be in prison for the rest of their lives whilst his son Khalif has spent time inside too. But why has this cyclical quality of family history stretched back three generations. What has caused it, what could have been done to stop it, and will it continue?
    If it was not for one decisive moment in Jeffrey Gamble’s life he believes he would either be dead or in prison for the rest of his life. In their own words the family reflect on what might have gone wrong since they moved to Los Angeles from Hope, Arkansas in the late 1960s. They all have differing versions but what becomes clear is that once you become a felon your chances of finding employment, housing and a new life are drastically diminished. What should be done to improve their chances? Is rehabilitation rather than punitive justice the answer and what will stop the same family members passing through the same prison doors?

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    I find it reassuring to know from recent evidence that people ultimately and collectively hold power in this world. Recent events confirm that Saudi Arabia was in fact ‘terrified’ of the consequences of the the ‘Islamic Awakening’ especially in Bahrain.
    I believe the trick to utilising collective ‘people power’ is in its implementation. We are agreed (on another thread) and history dictates that marching with banners achieves democratic assertion, at best galvanising public opinion and precipitating political debate. In the long term this power consolidates and change occurs, however time is not on our side.
    Perhaps the first objective would be to establish a dialogue against US expansionism by deciding if the following pillars of US doctrine are still relevant, are injurious and corrosive to peace accords and fatal to human advancements.
    1. Unchallenged US-Israel control of the Middle East and its resources, with no state in the region capable of independent action or policy.
    2. Surrounding China with US bases and boosting US military presence in the Asian-Pacific region to prevent the emergence of a regional power bloc capable of challenging US interests.
    3. Extending US military power into Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union republics, ensuring greater access to regional resources.
    4. Inhibiting the development of any independent military capacity outside of NATO and keeping the European Union financially and politically weak by setting members against each other and exacting conditions that make the EU financially unstable.

  • crab

    I consider CT bashing to be a childish distraction from the vicious truth within some serious CTs and western politics more visible crimes. They provide a bog standard trolling tactic to forum gamers.
    There does not seem to be much will to lash out at american culture here – not compared to eg. the thatcher thread. We have our own cultural ills so it is hard to criticise, but then if we were a respectful, peaceful nation, we would be dismissed and eventually attacked for not being “with them”.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    @ Kashmiri,

    Well said:-

    “I wouldn’t use the word “culture” here. We on the Old Continent have learned – through centuries of painful experience – to maintain emotional distance to the political apparatus. Americans – without centuries of experience – still seem to see the politicians in the old feudal way: President is Fathers/Leader of the Nation and Chief Commander of the Army, and soldiers are those who sacrifice their lives for the Leader, ergo, the Nation. That’s why in U.S., like in the Soviet Union, you just DO NOT criticise the military. These are heroes.”

    Very insightful.

    There is also the dynamics of “race” and racism within the American system. Here is one perspective:-

  • Ben Franklin

    “Ben Franklin said:”I think you’re being a bit glib on this subject,”

    You seem dismissive of the subject, and give it a light-hearted ‘Heave-Ho’.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    @ Guest,

    “The UK is catching up at the speed of light. It won`t be long before you will not be able to tell the two apart, the decay of civilisation.”

    “Civilisation” ? Tricky concept – slavery, colonialism, imperialism ( illegal invasions/interventions – Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Iran ( drone intrusion) – Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Agent orange and Napalm in Vietnam and illegal bombings in Laos and Cambodia – leap-frogging the first and second World Wars of course. But yes, architectural wonders of the world, scientific advancements, and artistic and cultural achievements as well on the better side of the human condition.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    “US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta acknowledged that: “We spilled a lot of blood here” … to achieve … making the country sovereign and independent and able to secure itself.” ”


    As the US General in Vietnam said – they killed all the villagers to save the village from Communism.

  • Fedup

    Ben Franklin,
    Considering the many more criminal enterprises of the same bunch of rats knackers and the greater scopes of their criminal conduct, somehow Pan Am flight takes a back seat. Further, you had asked about the article which I did read and gave you my assessment (bits of truth, and obfuscation)
    There is nothing light hearted about murder, or mas murder.

  • Ben Fanklin

    “Pan Am flight takes a back seat.”

    Why is that? Don’t you have to start somewhere? What could auger public awareness and concern about the power manipulations of the public mindset be more persuasive than the roots of the modern strategies of the powerblocks which make fools of us all every freaking day?

    I’ll tell you why. Because we don’t pay attention, and we don’t follow through on our threats to take them seriously.

    Therefore, they treat us like the phools we are.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Ben Franklin…do war and threats of wars and bombs rained down on other nations, not pose a threat to global – or – dies the United States of America’s core foreign policy stance make good sense?

    As Dr. King so simply and eloquently stated:-

    “A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death… Come home, America.”

    And if you doubt MLK – just have a look today at the US debt, the economy, the state of manufacturing industry, the general standards in the schools, the state of the infrastructure but being the world’s largest economy. Should the same bellicose foreign policy route be followed – or – is there a better way?

  • Ben Franklin

    ” Should the same bellicose foreign policy route be followed – or – is there a better way?”

    I’m sorry. Did you think I was supporting hegemony? Shall I assume you are a Thatcherite?

    I think you will understand my pique.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Build more prisons in the US or build more schools?

    Simple choice.

    The US has the highest level of incarceration of any country in the world. It also happens to have the world’s largest economy.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Ben Franklin,
    “Americans are no more morally/ethically deranged than any other people. We have our share of psychopaths (statistically 2-3 percent of the population) and they probably spike those numbers in the military because such are drawn to occupations with a license to kill.”
    This is what triggered my response Ben:-
    Which other nation has a comparable record of war like the US?
    • Extraterritorial and major domestic deployments
    o 1.1 1775–1799
    o 1.2 1800–1809
    o 1.3 1810–1819
    o 1.4 1820–1829
    o 1.5 1830–1839
    o 1.6 1840–1849
    o 1.7 1850–1859
    o 1.8 1860–1869
    o 1.9 1870–1879
    o 1.10 1880–1889
    o 1.11 1890–1899
    o 1.12 1900–1909
    o 1.13 1910–1919
    o 1.14 1920–1929
    o 1.15 1930–1939
    o 1.16 1940–1944
    o 1.17 1945–1949
    o 1.18 1950–1959
    o 1.19 1960–1969
    o 1.20 1970–1979
    o 1.21 1980–1989
    o 1.22 1990–1999
    o 1.23 2000–2009
    o 1.24 2010–Present
    • 2 Other interventions
    • 3 Battles with the Native Americans
    • 4 Relocation
    • 5 Armed insurrections and slave revolts
    • 6 Range wars
    • 7 Bloody local feuds
    • 8 Bloodless boundary disputes
    • 9 Terrorist, paramilitary groups and guerrilla warfare
    o 9.1 18th & 19th century
    o 9.2 20th & 21st century
    • 10 Labor-management disputes
    • 11 State and national secession attempts
    • 12 Riots, disorder and natural disasters
    • 13 Covert operations, coups, military advisers etc.
    o 13.1 1950s
    o 13.2 1960s
    o 13.3 1970s
    o 13.4 1980s
    o 13.5 2011

  • Ben Franklin


    We have a word for people who just want to argue and seek no resolution to their own fulminations.

    TROLL—-whether it’s under the bridge, or under the water of logic, they don’t care.

    Negative attention is better than none at all. This will be my last response to your idiocy.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    @ Ben Franklin,

    “your idiocy.”


    What so wrong with honestly expressed differing points of view.

    Seems much better than the ad hominen – surely?

    Resolution? – Stop the bellicose actions.

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