Issue 07 – July 2009

Current Affairs Essay
North Korea: "Sanity" At the BrinkBy Michael Parenti
The Obama Enigma: Imperial Interventionism and MilitarismBy Rodrigue Tremblay
Featured Book
Sunshine Assassins  By J. F. Miglio
Book of the Year 2008 (Nonfiction)
The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder  By Vincent Bugliosi
Book of the Year 2008 (Fiction)
The Naked Earth  By Jonathan Adam DeCoteau
Book of the Year 2007 (Nonfiction)
Fooled Again  By Mark Crispin Miller
Book of the Year 2007 (Fiction)
Dream of the Dragon Pool: A Daoist Quest  By Albert A. Dalia
Book of the Year 2006 (Nonfiction)
Your Daily Walk with the Great Minds of the Past and Present  By Richard A. Singer Jr.
Book of the Year 2006 (Fiction)
Hollywood and Sunset  By Luke Salisbury
Book of the Year 2005 (Nonfiction)
Bush on the Couch  By Justin A. Frank, M.D.
Book of the Year 2005 (Fiction)
Clearing Customs  By Martha Egan
Books of the Year 2004 (Nonfiction)
The Assassination of Julius Caesar  By Michael Parenti
The War on Freedom  By Nafeez Mossaddeq Ahmed
Crossing the Rubicon  By Michael Ruppert
Books of the Year 2004 (Fiction)
Candle in a Dark Time  By Virginia Stuart
My Life: A Story By Jesus Christ  By Christopher Miller
The Others at Monticello  By Esther Franklin
Recommended Reads
Soul's Infarct  By Diamela Eltit & Paz Errazuriz
A Worthy Legacy  By Tomi Akinyanmi
Dangerous Liaisons  By Michael D'Ambrosio
Shroud of Beckoning  By Deb Woody
Shadows and Not  By Sara Brown
America's Suicidal Statecraft  By James Cumes
The Handkerchief  By Julian Stark
The End of the 19th Century  By Eric Larsen
Up Close: A Mother's View  By Fiona Yaron-Field
Secrets Revealed  By Sheshena Pledger
A Case of Wild Justice  By Yvonne Jerrold
What Can We Do Next? TheAdventures of Lexi and Lolly  By Toula Magi
The Survivors  By Derek Laurens
Lizard's Lair  By Derek Laurens
My Angels Are Come  By Art Stump
Ghost Tango  By Janeen Ledford
The Declaration of White Independence:
      The Founding Documents of Transudationism
  By Kyle McDermott
The Naked Earth  By Jonathan Adam DeCoteau
Awaken and Arise!  By Arthur Earl Jones, Ph.D.
One Time in Paris  By Wade Stevenson
The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder  By Vincent Bugliosi
The Eye of Icarus  By Michael D'Ambrosio
Prodigal of the Pecos  By C.E. Edmonson
Dolphins Under My Bed  By Sandra Clayton
Hermetica  By Paul Kiritsis
Stolen Fields  By Jean Boggio
Eleven Roses  By Alexander Hernandez
What the Hell Is a Liberal?  By David Truskoff

Recommended Reads

If you are an independent, small press, or traditional publisher and would like to submit your book(s) for consideration to “Recommended Reads,” click here.

 

Soul’s Infarct

By Diamela Eltit & Paz Errazuriz
www.amazon.com
(Nonfiction)
Unique and penetrating examination through text and photographs of love among marginalized individuals in a notorious Chilean psychiatric hospital.

A Worthy Legacy

By Tomi Akinyanmi
www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Touching and lyrical account about a dying Nigerian man and his practical wisdom for living life to the fullest.

Dangerous Liaisons
By Michael D’Ambrosio


www.amazon.com
(Science Fiction)
In this action-packed sequel to The Eye of Icarus, Lieutenant Will Saris and his new bride are caught in a web of treachery where no one, including the Space Fleet, can be trusted.

Shroud of Beckoning
By Deb Woody


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Thought-provoking supernatural tale about a four-year-old who is possessed by a demonic spirit.

Shadows and Not
By Sara Brown


www.amazon.com
(Poetry)
Soul-searching poetry anthology that illuminates the human condition.

America’s Suicidal Statecraft
By James Cumes


www.amazon.com
(Nonfiction)
Well researched and documented examination of the self-destructive policies of the United States.

The Handkerchief
By Julian Stark


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
An intimate and probing love story that examines the breadth and depth of love and passion between two people.

The End of the 19th Century
By Eric Larsen


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Imposing lyrical epic about a Midwestern family’s journey through time and space.

Up Close: A Mother’s View
By Fiona Yaron-Field


www.amazon.com
(Nonfiction)
A touching and meditative memoir of a mother and her disabled daughter told through pictures and commentary.

Secrets Revealed
By Sheshena Pledger


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Gritty crime noir tale about a notorious crime family’s feud with its biggest rival.

A Case of Wild Justice
By Yvonne Jerrold


www.yvonnejerrold.com
(Fiction)
An intriguing story about a group of senior citizens who fight back against crime and vandalism in their neighborhood by becoming human booby traps.

What Can We Do Next? The
Adventures of Lexi and Lolly

By Toula Magi


www.ToulaMagi.com
(Fiction)
Delightful children’s story about the adventures of a little girl and her imaginary friend.

The Survivors
By Derek Laurens


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Fast-paced sci-fi adventure about the crew of a space cruiser that lands on a distant planet inhabited by savage humanoids.

Lizard’s Lair
By Derek Laurens


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
The novella prequel to the sci-fi adventure, The Survivors.

My Angels Are Come
By Art Stump


www.clumsyducks.com
(Nonfiction)
Insightful and candid day-to-day journal of how the author dealt with and survived prostate cancer.

Ghost Tango
By Janeen Ledford


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Intriguing account of a female teacher in a male prison for violent felons.

The Declaration of White Independence: The Founding Documents of Transudationism
By Kyle McDermott


www.amazon.com
(Fiction)
Controversial examination of race, religion, and spiritual evolution.

Awaken and Arise!
By Arthur Earl Jones, Ph.D.


www.planetaryascension.net
(Autobiography)
Fascinating, mystical life journey devoted to spirituality, self-discovery and planetary ascension.

One Time in Paris
By Wade Stevenson


www.amazon.com
(Memoir)
&nbsp An engaging and passionate account of a young man’s adventures and romances in 1960s Paris.

The Eye of Icarus
By Michael D’Ambrosio


www.publishersdrive.com
(Science Fiction)
Exciting story of an ambitious young officer who embarks on his first space mission that sets off a chain of events that not only changes his life but much of the universe
as well.

Prodigal of the Pecos
By C.E. Edmonson


www.pecosbooks.com
(Fiction)
Gritty Western tale about a man who returns home after many years to find the land of his birth embroiled in a bitter and deadly
land war.

Dolphins Under My Bed
By Sandra Clayton


www.dolphinsundermybed.com
(Nonfiction)
Inspirational memoir of how two baby boomers transform their lives by quitting their jobs and living on a sailboat.

Hermetica
By Paul Kiritsis


www.paulkiritsis.com
(Poetry)
Thought provoking collection of personal myths, legends, and poems centered on Egyptian and classical mythology.

Stolen Fields
By Jean Boggio


www.jeanboggio.com
(Nonfiction)
Riveting account of a family that held out against the government’s eminent domain takeover of their farm and how it shattered their American Dream.

Eleven Roses

By Alexander Hernandez
www.myspace.com/elevenroses
(Fiction)
Passion-filled story about a high-powered attorney who is forced to make a decision between a successful career and the woman
he loves.

What the Hell Is a Liberal?

By David Truskoff
www.erols.com/suttonbear
(Nonfiction)
Hard-hitting and insightful assortment of progressive essays and observations about politics and life.

 

If you are an independent, small press, or traditional publisher and would like to submit your book(s) for consideration to “Recommended Reads,”

click here.

 

Book submission deadline is
the 20th of each month.

 

Links For Independent Writers & Publishers

• Publishers Marketing Association (PMA): Largest non-profit trade association helping independent publishers
• Small Press Center: Non-profit organization designed to help small independent book publishers
• Press Release Services: Submit Press Release, Online Distribution Services.
• LitPitch: Place to read books online for free and for authors to pitch book ideas and get feedback.
• Bookwired.com: Author/reader resource for book reviews and news
• WriteLinks.com: Complete list of book publishers & publishing info
• Books-in-Print.com: Registry of electronic publications
• Bowker.com: Major book and publishing data
• PubEasy.com: E-commerce site for global bookselling
• Published.com: Informative and helpful site for independent writers and self-publishers.
• The Center for the Book: Book fairs & literary events
• American Booksellers Association: Organization for independently owned bookstores
• Business.com: Site listing book distributors and wholesalers
• Dowse: A list of e-book publishers
• Internet Publishing: Tips about online publishing from Piers Anthony
• Online Books Page: Listings of books online, news, & features
• Book Sense.com: Family of bookseller Web sites
• Nospine.com: Independent authors from around the world
• Author Yellow Pages: Online author directory
• Dan Poynter’s Para Publishing: The Godfather of self publishing
• Bookcrossing.com: Global book club & reading group
• Newradiance.com: Over 90 pages of inspired marketing ideas for small business owners and self-published authors.

 

Links For Progressive Publications & Organizations

• PEN.org: “An association of writers working to advance literature, defend free expression, and foster international literary fellowship.”
• TruthDig.com: “Hard-hitting investigative journalism.”
• MoveOn.org: Influential democracy in action group
• The Nation.com: “Unconventional wisdom since 1865.”
• Op/EdNews.com: “Progressive news and essays.”
• Air America Radio: “Unabashed liberal talk radio and humor.”
• Counterpunch: Hard-hitting alternative news and essays
• Buzzflash.com: Headlines and stories from dozens of alternative publications
• Democracy Now!: Complete and comprehensive presentation of alternative news and analysis with Amy Goodman leading the charge.
• Brad Blog: Up-to-date progressive news & opinions.
• Radio Power Network: Listener supported, independent radio streaming progressive music and culture from around the world.
• NPR.org: National listener supported news and information.
• Pacifica Radio: Listener-sponsored radio featuring alternative news and community service.
• From the Wilderness: Radical alternative news and essays
• Tom Paine.com: Alternative news and essays
• Mother Jones.com: Alternative and environmental news
• Liberalism Resurgent: Wealth of information on liberalism & politics
• The Foundation for Taxpayers & Consumer Rights: Loads of information about social and consumer issues
• TvNewsLies.org: A compendium of TV news lies
• In the Spotlight: Unsettling information about the voting process in America
• The Rest of Story: Alternative news on the media
• Judicial Watch: Legal watchdog information
• The Center for Public Integrity: Public service journalism
• PFAW.org: People for the American Way

 

North Korea: “Sanity”
At the Brink

By Michael Parenti

Nations that chart a self-defining course, seeking to use their land, labor, natural resources, and markets as they see fit, free from the smothering embrace of the US corporate global order, frequently become a target of defamation. Their leaders often have their moral sanity called into question by US officials and US media, as has been the case at one time or another with Castro, Noriega, Ortega, Qaddafi, Aristide, Milosevic, Saddam Hussein, Hugo Chavez, and others.

So it comes as no surprise that the rulers of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK or North Korea) have been routinely described as mentally unbalanced by our policymakers and pundits. Senior Defense Department officials refer to the DPRK as a country “not of this planet,” led by “dysfunctional” autocrats. One government official, quoted in the New York Times, wondered aloud “if they are really totally crazy.” The New Yorker magazine called them “balmy,” and late-night TV host David Letterman got into the act by labeling Kim Jong-il a “madman maniac.”

To be sure, there are things about the DPRK that one might wonder about, including its dynastic leadership system, its highly dictatorial one-party rule, and the chaos that seems implanted in the heart of its “planned” economy.

But in its much advertised effort to become a nuclear power, North Korea is actually displaying more sanity than first meets the eye. The Pyongyang leadership seems to know something about US global policy that our own policymakers and pundits have overlooked. In a word, the United States has never attacked or invaded any nation that has a nuclear arsenal.

The countries directly battered by US military actions in recent decades (Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, then again Iraq), along with numerous other states that have been threatened at one time or another for being “anti-American” or “anti-West” (Iran, Cuba, South Yemen, Venezuela, Syria, North Korea, and others) have one thing in common: not one of them has wielded a nuclear deterrence-until now.

Let us provide a little background. Put aside the entire Korean War (1950-53) in which US aerial power destroyed most of the DPRK’s infrastructure and tens of thousands of its civilians. Consider more recent events. In the jingoist tide that followed the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, President George W. Bush claimed the right to initiate any military action against any “terrorist” nation, organization, or individual of his choosing. Such a claim to arbitrary power-in violation of international law, the UN charter, and the US Constitution-transformed the president into something of an absolute monarch who could exercise life and death power over any quarter of the Earth. Needless to say, numerous nations–the DPRK among them-were considerably discomforted by the US president’s elevation to King of the Planet.

It was only in 2008 that President Bush finally removed North Korea from a list of states that allegedly sponsor terrorism. But there remains another more devilishly disquieting hit list that Pyongyang recalls. In December 2001, two months after 9/11, Vice President Dick Cheney referred chillingly to “forty or fifty countries” that might need military disciplining. A month later in his 2002 State of the Union message, President Bush pruned the list down to three especially dangerous culprits: Iraq, Iran, and North Korea, who, he said, composed an “axis of evil.”

It was a curious lumping together of three nations that had little in common. In Iraq the leadership was secular, in Iran it was a near Islamic theocracy. And far from being allies, the two countries were serious enemies. Meanwhile the DPRK, had no historical, cultural, or geographical links to either Iraq or Iran. But it could witness what was happening.

The first to get hit was Iraq, nation #1 on the short list of accused evil doers. Before the Gulf War of 1990-91 and the subsequent decade of sanctions, Iraq had the highest standard of living in the Middle East. But years of war, sanctions, and occupation reduced the country to shambles, its infrastructure shattered and much of its population drenched in blood and misery.

Were it not that Iraq has proven to be such a costly venture, the United States long ago would have been moving against Iran, #2 on the axis-of-evil hit list. As we might expect, Iranian president Mahmoud Amadinijad has been diagnosed in the US media as “dangerously unstable.” The Pentagon has announced that thousands of key sites in Iran have been mapped and targeted for aerial attack. All sorts of threats have been directed against Tehran for having pursued an enriched uranium program-which every nation in the world has a right to do. And on a recent Sunday TV program, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned that the United States might undertake a “first strike” against Iran to prevent its nuclear weapons development.  Read More

 

The Obama Enigma: Imperial
Interventionism and Militarism

By Rodrigue Tremblay

“We do not want a PAX Americana enforced on the world by American weapons of war. Not the peace of the grave or the security of the slave. I am talking about genuine peace, the kind of peace that makes life on earth worth living, the kind that enables men and nations to grow and to hope and to build a better life for their children – not merely peace for Americans but peace for all men and women – not merely peace in our time but peace for all time.”
–President John F. Kennedy, 1963

“I will not hesitate to use force unilaterally, if necessary, to protect the American people or our vital interests wherever we are attacked or imminently threatened. …We must also consider using military force in circumstances beyond self-defense, in order to provide for the common security that underpins global stability – to support friends, participate in stability and reconstruction operations, or confront mass atrocities.”
–Sen. Barack Obama, Foreign Affairs (July/August 2007)

“Our interest in Afghanistan is to prevent it from becoming a haven for terrorists bent on attacking us. That does not require the scale of military operations that the incoming administration is contemplating. It does not require wholesale occupation. It does not require the endless funneling of human treasure and countless billions of taxpayer dollars to the Afghan government.”
–Bob Herbert, The New York Times, January 6, 2009

Those who thought that the election of Barack Obama as American President would mean a fundamental shift in U.S. foreign policy should have lost their illusions by now. Faces change but the system remains. When you want change, it’s necessary to look beyond a single individual and evaluate the team he is working with …or for. And the Obama team is what can be called a soft neoconservative team, all devoted to maintaining the military-industrial complex, and all sold out with the ideology of permanent wars rather than permanent human progress.

The truth is that during the last election, both candidate McCain and candidate Obama campaigned under the cover of fighting terrorism. That is the reason I had concluded then that candidate Obama was only marginally superior to candidate McCain, but not fundamentally different. In fact, I believe that as far as character goes, McCain was probably more his own man than Obama, who has demonstrated a tendency to align himself with powerful interests in order to bolster his political career.

There seems to have been a deal here: Obama will be kept busy shaking hands, traveling and delivering grand speeches or sermons, while Chief of cabinet Rahm Emanuel will run the White House. Everything then fell into place: Marine Corps General James Jones was named National Security Advisor (N.B.: The national security adviser heads the National Security Council, which is the part of the White House structure that deals with foreign policy), and Bush’s Defense Secretary Robert Gates was asked to remain at his post. This alone should have persuaded most everyone that U.S. foreign policy would only change in tone, not in substance.

By enlarging and expanding the Afghanistan-Pakistan war, just as U.S. troops reduce their unwelcomed presence in Iraq, Obama has de facto endorsed interventionism and militarism as the cornerstone of his foreign policy. This is a failed policy, besides being immoral, because it requires the pursuit of a contradiction, i.e., killing civilians and supporting authoritarian regimes while attempting to obtain the support of a foreign population in favor of democracy.

What is more, Obama is enlarging a war that has no clear rationale behind it and no clear objectives. If the main rationale is to build his political image as “commander-in-chief”, then Obama is falling into the same trap as George W. Bush. The Afghanistan-Pakistan war will be his war and it will be a quagmire. When he signed an order increasing U.S. troops by 17,000 combat and support personnel in Afghanistan, then newly sworn in President Barack Obama said the war in Afghanistan was “still winnable”. What did he mean? Does it mean that the U.S. will have troops over there for decades?

It seems that nothing is learned from history and that everything has to be relearned. Such a policy failed miserably in Vietnam, and it is most likely to fail again in Afghanistan-Pakistan, two countries whose borders are highly artificial, having been imposed by imperial Great Britain in the nineteen century. It also failed for the Soviets who had to withdraw from Afghanistan after eight-and-a-half disastrous years. Soon after, the entire Soviet regime collapsed.

Indeed, by enlarging the Afghanistan-Pakistan War, President Obama is embarking on a course of action that could eventually destroy his presidency. It will be a repeat of President Lyndon B. Johnson who was destroyed politically with his Vietnam War, even though this was a war he had not started. As in Vietnam, the ill-conceived Afghanistan war will become a war of attrition that will drain public support and finances as the war becomes more and more Americanized. This will be another tragedy.

If Obama listens to the military, as he obviously seems to do, he will be fed the deadly pablum that every problem in the world is a military problem. But this is false and counterproductive. In fact, bombing civilian populations will only enrage them against the invaders, just as bombing the United States would naturally enrage Americans. On that, Obama and his team are on the same wavelength and on the same path to disaster as Bush-Cheney and their neocon sycophants.

This is too bad. President Barack Obama is quickly wasting his political capital and his political credibility. And once lost, it will be difficult to regain them.

Rodrigue Tremblay is professor emeritus of economics at the University of Montreal and can be reached at rodrigue.tremblay@ yahoo.com. He is the author of the book The New American Empire. Visit his blog site at www.thenewamericanempire.com/blog.

 

 

Featured Book

A bone-chilling political
morality fable…

— Midwest Book Review

Sunshine Assassins by John F. Miglio

 

Buy Sunshine Assassins by John F. Miglio
Sunshine Assassins
By John F. Miglio
(Fiction)
Controversial political thriller about a band of democratic rebels and their attempt to overthrow the corporate fascist shadow government in the USA…Read Reviews

John F. Miglio is available for all types of speaking engagements. For information, click here

 

Book of the Year
(Nonfiction 2008)

OR Book of the year 2008

 

amazon.com
The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder
By Vincent Bugliosi


A powerful and convincing case against George W. Bush and his inner circle of advisors for the murder of over 4,0000 U.S. soldiers in Iraq.

 

Book of the Year
(Fiction 2008)

OR Book of the Year 2008

 

amazon.com
The Naked Earth
By Jonathan Adam DeCoteau


Exciting and insightful story about an Iraqi-American photographer who seeks redemption after he commits a brutal crime against his fellow man in Basra.

 

Book of the Year
(Nonfiction 2007)

OR Book of the year 2007

 

amazon.com
Fooled Again
By Mark Crispin Miller


Every American should read this well-documented and comprehensive account of the nationwide election fraud that handed George W. Bush a second presidential election.

 

Book of the Year
(Fiction 2007)

OR Book of the Year 2007

 

amazon.com
Dream of the Dragon Pool
A Daoist Quest

By Albert A. Dalia


An unforgettable tale about China’s best-loved poet-adventurer that blends magic, myth, and occult powers with
fast-paced action.

 

Book of the Year
(Nonfiction 2006)

OR Book of the year 2006

 

amazon.com
Your Daily Walk with the Great
Minds of the Past and Present

By Richard A. Singer Jr.


A terrific inspirational guide to personal transformation and spiritual development that uses quotes of famous people and insightful advice for every day of the year.

 

Book of the Year
(Fiction 2006)

OR Book of the Year 2006

 

amazon.com
Hollywood and Sunset
By Luke Salisbury


Witty and well written story about a writer from the East who takes a life-altering tour of 1916 Hollywood– in the company of D.W. Griffith, Lillian Gish, and Howard Gaye, an actor who likes to dress up as Jesus Christ.

 

Book of the Year
(Nonfiction 2005)

OR Book of the Year 2005

 

amazon.com
Bush on the Couch
By Justin A. Frank, M.D.


A compelling and insightful look into George W. Bush’s psyche, and how his deep-seeded fears, insecurities, and megalomania have undermined the safety of our country.

 

Book of the Year
(Fiction 2005)

OR Books of the Year 2005

 

amazon.com
Clearing Customs
By Martha Egan


A sinister, yet amusing tale of an ex-hippie owner of a small, struggling Latin American imports store who joins with her friends to fight corrupt custom officials whose harassment threatens to put her out of business.

 

Books of the Year
(Nonfiction 2004)

OR Books of the Year 2004

 

amazon.com
The Assassination of
Julius Caesar

By Michael Parenti


Award-winning author and scholar examines ancient Roman history from a populist viewpoint, arguing that Caesar was assassinated for being a champion of the people.

OR Books of the Year 2004

 

amazon.com
The War on Freedom
By Nafeez Mossaddeq Ahmed


Riveting and well-researched expose of how and why America was attacked on 9/11, including information about faked terrorism and mass media manipulation by the Bush administration.

OR Books of the Year 2004

 

amazon.com
Crossing the Rubicon
By Michael Ruppert


Hard-hitting, iconoclastic editor/publisher of “From the Wilderness” strips the power elite to the bone and takes a shocking look at the decline of the American empire at the end of the age of oil.

 

Books of the Year
(Fiction 2004)

OR Books of the Year 2004

 

amazon.com
Candle in a Dark Time
By Virginia Stuart


Compelling, emotionally charged story of how a Danish woman risks her life to save Jews from Nazis during World War II.

OR Books of the Year 2004

 

amazon.com
My Life: A Story
By Jesus Christ

By Christopher Miller


Innovative and provocative story of the life of Jesus Christ told as a first person narrative.

OR Books of the 2004

 

amazon.com
The Others at Monticello
By Esther Franklin


Award-winning historical novel that explores the relationship between Thomas Jefferson and his slaves, especially Sally Hemings and her children.

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