Letters from our readers

17 January 2008

The following is a selection of recent letters to the WSWS.

On “New Hampshire primary foreshadows protracted contest for US presidential nominations”

Here’s the problem. The polls accurately predicted to within 1% error every single candidate except Obama/Clinton. If you look at the pre-vote polls for all other candidates, they match up exactly. I mean exactly. Then, it is as if the Clinton/Obama results are reversed. They’re both off by 5+% each. The statistical odds of this happening by chance must be astronomically small.

This should cause a serious investigation into potential vote fraud. You must be able to explain this discrepancy and rule out fraud. Otherwise, fraud must be the prime suspect if we hope to have fair elections in the future!

SR

Chicago, Illinois, USA

9 January 2008

On “The India-Australia cricket conflict: sport, profits and nationalism”

“Together with other sports such as football, cricket is used a means to distract masses of ordinary working people from the problems of daily life and to channel mounting anger and disaffection into socially regressive channels.”

Well said. I find it almost surreal that in a world wracked by enormous social convulsions and events of world-historical importance, acres of newsprint and thousands of hours of broadcast are devoted to sporting events which, after all, are really only of the most peripheral importance. Each year it seems that ever more frenetic efforts are made to whip up the basest sentiments amongst the working masses. For how long can this state of affairs continue?

EG

South Africa

10 January 2008

On “US Supreme Court hears challenge to lethal injection procedure”

Thank you for your review of the lethal injection debate in the Supreme Court. It is extremely noteworthy that there has been so little serious attention paid to this horrible spectacle in the supposedly liberal press.

The discussion in the Supreme Court is truly a measure of the degeneration of American liberalism, and an equally repugnant bellwether of the state of American democracy as the fraud presently being perpetrated on the American people by the three demagogic Democratic contenders Clinton, Obama and Edwards. Incidentally, they all support the death penalty.

Historically, law and the ideas of the enlightenment and humanity were deeply connected. This link has been well and truly severed in the United States, and the lethal injection debate only highlights once again this truth as the judiciary increasingly adopts authoritarian and barbaric legal positions to secure the defence of the capitalist order.

Scalia’s violent outbursts in favour of brutal methods of execution remind me, frankly, of the Nazi head judge of Hitler’s Volksgericht, Roland Freissler. Like Freissler, I suspect Scalia would approve of meat hooks as a method of execution if some state put it on the statute book.

In 1972, The US Supreme Court struck down the death penalty as cruel and unusual punishment and therefore unconstitutional in the case of Furman v Georgia. Justices Brennan and Thurgood Marshall described it as degrading and offensive to human dignity.

A socialist legal order would abolish the death penalty and prisons.

In America, where irrationalism now prevails in every sphere, thousands lose their homes and thousands go to prison every day.

The chilling proceedings in the Supreme Court just confirm so powerfully the complete bankruptcy of this social order and the need for the working class to build a new party against the Democrats, and establish a new society on a much higher level of human consciousness than the level of America’s highest Court.

Kind regards,

RH

Sydney, Australia

10 January 2008

On “Bush exploits Strait of Hormuz incident to threaten Iran”

After seeing the video that the government gave to news stations, I couldn’t help but think I’ve seen this somewhere before. After giving it much thought I noticed that this is almost the exact same thing that happened in the Gulf of Tonkin 43 years ago. The fact that the government was “attacked” by a country that we already wanted to go to war with and to see that Iranian boats were “threatening” American ships telling them that they where “going to explode soon” makes me think that the only thing next is that those Iranian vessels are going to attack us—and next thing we know we’ll be occupying Iran for the next 10 or so years.

KG

11 January 2008

* * *

Funny, when the Cold War practice of bending radar screens and maritime encounters was a common event, no one noticed. When Bush wants to jump things up, such a non-event incident gets an unusually high priority.

But in regards to comparing incidents, no one has mentioned the USS Liberty incident when Israel ... deliberately attacked the USS Liberty, killed and wounded sailors and that “little” incident is about as provocative as you can get at sea and the US of A did absolutely nothing ... but recall the battle group further off the coast...

BP

Narrows Inlet, British Columbia, Canada

11 January 2008

On “Film and television writers plan ‘Strike TV’ Internet programming”

The WGA should never have given in to the Letterman show. I’m not clear how that deal was struck, but two important things came out of it: (1) CBS got back to the business of selling advertising time, and (2) America got its “fresh” TV back. So, was it the leadership of the WGA that struck this deal? All you have to do to control an organization is compromise its leadership. Look at how the federal government in the US has been compromised by the theft of just two top elected offices. By giving Letterman fresh and topical material, a lot of Americans will now think the writers’ strike is “not that bad.” Force endless re-runs on America—that’s the only way for the WGA to get the results it desires. And if the leadership of the WGA struck the Letterman deal contrary to the will of the WGA, then you writers need to literally lock your leadership out of their offices. End of sermon.

MS

14 January 2008

On “Philip Agee, former agent who exposed CIA crimes, dies in Cuba”

I remember Agee’s Inside the Company as being an abstract modern art masterpiece with magic marker, it was so redacted. Still, it would be hard to imagine someone like him coming forth in what today passes for a political environment.

RM

14 January 2008

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