Nine Circles of Hell!: Wednesday, May 9, 2012 Nine Circles of Hell!


Your bitter blind broke gap-toothed radio show host Chuck Mertz‘s blog, ‘The Nine Circles of Hell!,’ is now posted every week day, Monday through Friday, at Noon (US central). It’s all the news that give you fits in print, today’s nine reminders that ‘This is Hell!’

Click on any of the Nine Circles! in bold to go directly to the original article.

Hopes for a diplomatic end to the US-Taliban war, “have been stalled for months,” according to The Washington Post reporting with Foreign Policy. The Post goes on to report, “the political plan, intended to move alongside military progress on a parallel track, now risks falling off the rails. The approaching withdrawal deadline has raised anxiety among many Afghans who fear they will be left with the results of a rushed negotiation that gives the Taliban unwarranted political power, or a civil war like the one that engulfed Afghanistan in the 1990s.” The Wall Street Journal has more bad news for US talks in Afghanistan. Iran is pressing Afghanistan to, “scuttle a newly signed security accord with the US, threatening to deport Afghan refugees and migrant workers if Afghanistan’s parliament ratifies the deal,” according to the Journal. “Iran’s large Afghan refugee population gives Tehran leverage over Afghanistan’s cash-strapped government.” Heather Barr, the Human Rights Watch researcher in Afghanistan, is quoted saying, “This is just the most recent of what’s been a longstanding tendency by the Iranian government to use the presence of migrants and refugees as leverage in their dealings with Afghanistan.” None of the US peace plans for Afghanistan are popular – neither are US war plans. A new poll shows two-out-of-three Americans oppose the US-Afghan war. As the Afghan war continues, its veterans get short shrift at home. The Disabled Veterans National Foundation received about $55.9 million in donations since it began operations in 2007, yet according to the group’s own tax filings, almost none of that money went to help vets. The money instead went to a company that owns two direct-mail fundraising companies which raised money for the charity. CharityWatch president Daniel Borochoff, is quoted saying, “Up to $2 billion is raised in the name of veterans in this country and it’s so sad that a great deal of it’s wasted. Hundreds of millions of dollars of our charitable dollars intended to help veterans is being squandered and wasted by opportunists and by individuals and companies who see it as a profit-making opportunity.” Nobody likes the peace, nobody likes the war, and those fighting it aren’t getting the help they deserve. Even those starving for better prison conditions may end up causing more violence. The Los Angeles Times reports, “Fears are growing about the worsening condition of two Palestinian prisoners who have refused food since Feb. 28, and leaders in the West Bank and Gaza Strip are warning of an unpredictable public backlash should either man die.” While Arab struggles with Jew, some in the States prepare for an antisemitic race war. Ten alleged members of “a military-styled, anti-Semitic, white supremacist, skinhead organization” planning a “race war’ near Disney World have been arrested. The group, which views themselves as “protectors of the white race,” allegedly intended “to kill Jews, immigrants and other minorities.” While humans are busy killing each other, the damage our actions have done to the planet always loom like a spectre. That’s right, there’s more evidence of progressing climate change. A new study shows warm water fish are moving north. What’s the big deal? Richard Benyon, the UK minister for the marine environment, is quoted saying, “The truth is that climate change is having a big impact on distribution of fish stocks and this is going to present some significant challenges for policymakers, fisheries managers and for fishing industry itself.” In other words, if you think we’ve mismanaged our stocks with overfishing, wait until we have even less efficient oversight with moving marine populations. Not that we’re great at coming up with solutions for the environmental problems we’ve created. The Obama administration’s latest restrictions on franking are limited to only a small part of the US. As ProPublica reveals, “(the new rules) would apply to mineral rights managed by the Bureau of Land Management, which means areas beneath most BLM and tribal land, but scarcely any US Forest Service, private or state-owned lands – where most drilling occurs.” Nothing new here. The US track record on cleaning up messes is not that great. The Exxon Valdez has been banned from entering India for dismantling until it has been decontaminated. The ship, now known as “Oriental Nicety,” now awaits clean-up for it’s final shipbreaking over 23 years since the infamous oil spill.

That’s the Nine Circles of Hell! for Wednesday, May 9, 2012.

Come back tomorrow for the Nine! at Noon!