Thursday, April 27, 2006

European Inquiry Says C.I.A. Flew 1,000 Flights in Secret - New York Times

European Inquiry Says C.I.A. Flew 1,000 Flights in Secret - New York Times:
BRUSSELS, April 26 — Investigators for the European Parliament said Wednesday that data gathered from air safety regulators and others found that the Central Intelligence Agency had flown 1,000 undeclared flights over European territory since 2001.

Sometimes the planes stopped to pick up terrorism suspects who had been kidnapped to take them to countries that use torture, the investigators added.
Looks like we DO TORTURE after all. Ball's in your court again, GW.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

How Conveeeeenient

No Charges in Falsified Nuclear Waste Data - New York Times:
"WASHINGTON, April 25 — The United States attorney for Nevada has decided not to prosecute federal employees who admitted making up details about research involving the Energy Department's effort to open a nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, the department's inspector general said Tuesday."

The Lobbyist Empowerment Act - New York Times

The Lobbyist Empowerment Act - New York Times:
"The House Republican leaders managed a new feat of cravenness during the recent recess, hollowing out their long promised 'lobbying reform' bill to meet the dictates of — who else? — Washington's power lobbyists."Like I said. The current situation won't improve until November. Remember!

Bush Picks Fox Commentator as Spokesman - New York Times

Bush Picks Fox Commentator as Spokesman - New York TimesBecause it was the only way to get Fox News propaganda to everybody whether they watch Fox or not.

Rove Testifies Again in C.I.A. Leak Case - New York Times

Rove Testifies Again in C.I.A. Leak Case - New York TimesAnd he'll keep doing so until he gets it right.

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

My Way News - Two Sides to Story of CIA's Alleged Leaker:
It is not yet clear precisely what McCarthy did that led to the firing. In a statement to CIA employees, Goss said that 'a CIA officer has acknowledged having unauthorized discussions with the media, in which the officer knowingly and willfully shared classified intelligence, including operational information.'

Last week, government officials indicated McCarthy was involved in providing information to reporters that included material used in The Washington Post's award-winning report on a covert network of CIA prisons. Allegations of a Soviet-style gulag in Eastern Europe and other facilities sparked international condemnation and investigations.

Goss and others have said leaks have done dramatic damage to U.S. relationships with allies. He told Congress in February that his counterparts ask: 'Mr. Goss, can't you Americans keep a secret?'

But McCarthy's attorney, Ty Cobb, defends her actions and says she was not the source for the Post story. 'She did not leak any classified information, and she did not have access to the information apparently attributed to her by some government officials,' Cobb said.
Obviously, she overstepped because only the President and Vice-President can leak intelligence (they've leaked so much, there isn't much left, after all).

Notice how the "authorities" blame the leaking for damaging relations with our allies, and not the illegal and immoral acts of extreme rendition and torture. It's always the whistle-blower's fault, not the person(s) responsible for the embarassing activity.

Congress Fails To Police Itself

My Way News:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Congressional watchdogs blasted an ethics reform bill pending in the House of Representatives on Tuesday as a 'scam' that would do little to curb the influence of money in politics.

'This legislation is so weak it's embarrassing,' said Chellie Pingree, president of Common Cause, a group promoting accountability in government.


"This bill is based on the premise that you can fool all of the people all of the time. This is an attempt at one of the greatest legislative scams that I have seen in 30 years of working on these issues," said Fred Wertheimer, president of the advocacy group Democracy 21.
The All-Republican-Majority government can't figure out how to fix itself. Why am I not surprised? The good news: if they can't figure it out before November, somebody else will.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Iraq Civil War -- Part Deux

Shiite Militias Move Into Oil-Rich Kirkuk, Even as Kurds Dig In:
"KIRKUK, Iraq -- Hundreds of Shiite Muslim militiamen have deployed in recent weeks to this restive city -- widely considered the most likely flash point for an Iraqi civil war -- vowing to fight any attempt to shift control over Kirkuk to the Kurdish-governed north, according to U.S. commanders and diplomats, local police and politicians."

Weakened Lobbying Bill Heads to House Vote

My Way News - Weakened Lobbying Bill Heads to House Vote:
"WASHINGTON (AP) - Lobbying legislation is heading to a House vote this week without provisions requiring lobbyists to keep track of their contacts with lawmakers and report fundraising activities. Democrats and activist groups say the bill is now too weak to change the money culture in Washington."As expected, the bribery and graft lobbying will continue unabated as long as the current encumbent majority lasts. They have no shame, period.

My Way News - Bush Eases Environmental Rules on Gasoline

My Way News - Bush Eases Environmental Rules on Gasoline:
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Bush on Tuesday ordered a temporary suspension of environmental rules for gasoline, making it easier for refiners to meet demand and possibly dampen prices at the pump. He also halted for the summer the purchase of crude oil for the government's emergency reserve.


Easing the environment rules will allow refiners greater flexibility in providing oil supplies since they will not have to use certain additives such as ethanol to meet clean air standards. The suspension of oil purchases for the federal emergency oil reserve is likely to have only modest impact since relative little extra oil will be involved.
And watch him leave that first part about environment rules in place after he starts buying the reserves again. There isn't an environmental protection BushCo wouldn't "ease" out of existence.

New Low!

My Way News:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush's public approval rating has fallen to 32 percent, a new low for his presidency, a CNN poll showed on Monday.

The survey also showed that 60 percent of Americans disapprove of the way Bush is handling his job.
I wonder if he can get below 30? 20?

Bush Spouts Off About Oil

Bush to Halt Deposits to Oil Reserve - New York Times:
Noting that energy companies are posting record profits, the president called on them to invest more in additional refinery capacity and alternative energy sources. He also said some tax breaks enjoyed by the industry should be curtailed.

'I'm looking forward to Congress to take about $2 billion of those tax breaks out of the budget over a 10-year period of time,' he said.
Only $2 billion over 10 years? That's chump change for the oil companies. And just asking the oil companies to add capacity isn't going to make them do it. They manufactured this current situation in the first place by cutting capacity and reserves.

Rebuilding of Iraqi Pipeline as Disaster Waiting to Happen - New York Times

Rebuilding of Iraqi Pipeline as Disaster Waiting to Happen - New York Times

Or, "Why Haliburton And It's Subsidiaries Should Be The Last Corporation To Give A Contract To, And Not The First." Or, "Your Tax Dollars At Work -- NOT!"

Iran Says It Is Ready to Share Nuclear Technology - New York Times

Iran Says It Is Ready to Share Nuclear Technology - New York Times:
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iran threatened Tuesday to begin hiding its nuclear program if the West takes any ''harsh measures'' against it -- Tehran's sharpest rebuttal yet to a U.N. Security Council deadline to suspend uranium enrichment or face possible sanctions.

Iran's supreme leader, meanwhile, said in a meeting with the president of wartorn Sudan that Tehran was ready to transfer its nuclear technology to other countries.

Iran's warning to the U.N. watchdog agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency, came from Tehran's top nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani. They were the strongest words of defiance yet ahead of a Friday deadline, set by the Security Council, for Iran to suspend enrichment of uranium, a process that can produce fuel for nuclear reactors or material for warheads.
Is it just me, or are they doing their best (worst?) to make a target out of themselves? Do they want the U.S. or Israel to attack them so they can start a "holy" war in the Middle East?

I feel like it's the '70s all over again.


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