If staging coups, waging secret wars, suspending civil liberties, or torturing people were merely aberrations pursued by a handful of zealots, Congress could simply punish the offenders and get back to "business as usual." But the obvious, and yet unspoken, truth is that destabilizing other governments, unnecessary (and sometimes covert) wars, and abuses of power - at home and abroad - are standard tactics of the modern presidency.
Source: Common Dreams
The G20 in Pittsburgh showed us how pitifully fearful our leaders have become.
What no terrorist could do to us, our own leaders did.
Out of fear of the possibility of a terrorist attack, authorities militarize our towns, scare our people away, stop daily life and quash our constitutional rights.
For days, downtown Pittsburgh, home to the G20, was a turned into a militarized people-free ghost town. Sirens screamed day and night. Helicopters crisscrossed the skies. Gunboats sat in the rivers. The skies were defended by Air Force jets. Streets were barricaded by huge cement blocks and fencing. Bridges were closed with National Guard across the entrances. Public transportation was stopped downtown. Amtrak train service was suspended for days.
Source: Green Left Weekly
On September 19, the third anniversary of the military coup that wrecked Thai democracy, two demonstrations took place.They sum up the two faces of Thailand.
One demonstration, by tens of thousands of “Red Shirts” in Bangkok, was organised in order to continue the demand for full democracy. It was a peaceful and friendly demonstration.
Yet the military-backed Democrat Party government, headed by Abhisit Vejjajiva, declared a state of emergency and lined up thousands of police and soldiers to deal with the demonstrators.
The following video reports on the protests and activist events surrounding the G20 meetings in Pittsburgh include numerous interviews with activists, organizers, union members and locals, as well as footage of the marches, activist gatherings and heavy police presence.