Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Archive for March 13th, 2011

State Dept is now one clown short of a circus

Posted by Charles II on March 13, 2011

PJ Crowley, possibly the official most thoroughly roasted by Mercury Rising for his often outlandish comments on the Honduran coup, has resigned from the State Department. And now I have to say, he was forced to resign because he spoke truth to power, and so he is no longer in my eyes a complete clown. Grudgingly, I have to give him some respect:

WASHINGTON — State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley quit on Sunday after causing a stir by describing the military’s treatment of the suspected WikiLeaks leaker as “ridiculous” and “stupid,” pointed words that forced President Barack Obama to defend the detention as appropriate.

Crowley’s comments about the conditions for Pfc. Bradley Manning [held in isolation, denied anything to stimulate his mind, stripped naked, and constantly under surveillance] at a Marine Corps brig in Quantico, Virginia, reverberated quickly, from the small audience in Massachusetts where Crowley spoke to a White House news conference Friday where Obama weighed in about the 23-year-old soldier believed responsible for the largest leak of classified American documents ever.

Crowley was quoted as saying in Massachusetts that he didn’t understand why the military was handling Manning’s detention that way, and calling it “ridiculous, counterproductive and stupid.”

Considering that the treatment of Bradley Manning could very well end up placing the Obama Administration in the dock for human rights abuses, I think PJ’s statement was pretty intelligent, and Obama’s defense of torture was pretty dumb.

Posted in Honduras, State Department | 4 Comments »

Going Wobbly in the knees

Posted by Charles II on March 13, 2011

Onyx Lynx in comments at The Sideshow notes that the IWW (known more usually as the Wobblies) have put together a pamphlet on the nature of general strikes. Probably the key takeaway has to do with certain provisions in American law that make it impossible for labor leaders to advocate general strikes:

Labor law is set up in the United States to discourage unions from standing together. Your union’s officials will be afraid of possible legal ramifications. They will also be afraid that no other unions will endorse the call or actually carry out the strike. Your union may have contractual agreements that union officers are worried about.

So, in interpreting events, do not expect any political leader or any labor leader to advocate a general strike. They occur only when individuals get together and act without leaders. This is why they are very rare.

Posted in unions | Comments Off on Going Wobbly in the knees

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