Monday, November 19, 2007

Guards 'killed Afghan civilians'

Many people reported dead in a recent bombing in Afghanistan were actually shot dead by security guards after the blast, an internal UN document says.

read more | digg story

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Why Isn't Kucinich Taken Seriously?

Tucker Carlson, who hosts the MSNBC Political show 'Tucker', had a segment on tonight's show asking why Dennis Kucinich isn't taken seriously despite being the only "true" Democrat in the field.

read more | digg story

Monday, November 05, 2007

In Defense of Voting Rights

In Defense of Voting Rights - New York Times:
"A House Judiciary subcommittee was the site of a sad spectacle the other day: John Tanner, who heads the Justice Department’s voting section, trying to explain offensive, bigoted comments he made about minority voters. It was a shameful moment that crystallized the need for immediate steps to fight for the rights that Mr. Tanner has been working so hard to undermine."

No Wonder He Fell In Love

YouTube - Elizabeth Kucinich: Delivering Peace

Dennis Kucinich's wife is the closest thing to a faery queen this planet has ever produced. I would dearly love to see her as First Lady of America. Her spirit is a bright light in the dark forest of American politics.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Continued Updated Scandal List

While not every scandal is listed, here is a growing list of some of the reasons why this administration needs to be impeached.

read more | digg story

Apathy Is Doom

"If present trends continue, 1.8 billion people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity by 2025, and two-thirds of the world population could be subject to water stress."

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

42 Reasons And Counting

With thanks to jurassicpork at Welcome to Pottersville, here is a video not for the weak at heart (keep the sound down because it's NSFW!):

Pass it around!

"The Real Iraq We Knew" by 12 former Army captains

Five years on, the Iraq war is as undermanned and under-resourced as it was from the start. And, five years on, Iraq is in shambles. As Army captains who served in Baghdad and beyond, we've seen the corruption and the sectarian division. We understand what it's like to be stretched too thin. And we know when it's time to get out.

read more | digg story

Marine Chief Worries Force Growing Heavy

More on the status of the war in Iraq from someone in the military.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

By Their Own Standards, Bush Adm is ‘Treasonous’ for Leaking Bin Laden Tape

A private intelligence company is claiming that intel officials within the Bush admin jeopardized national security by leaking a classified bin Laden tape to Fox News. Ironically, Bush admin officials and conservative commentators harshly denounced the NYT in 2006 for running a story about a secret program designed to monitor terrorist finances.

read more | digg story

It's the "Who's Your Daddy" Nation

The American corporatist system has become antithetical to the concept of individual liberty. How many times do we have to go around on this queasy-making merry-go-round of propaganda and militarism before we shout - enough! - then shutdown the whole cut-rate carnival and run the scheming carnies who operate it out of town?

read more | digg story

Earth already past 'global warming tipping point,' new study

'We thought we'd be at that threshold within about a decade,'' said Australian of the Year and scientists Tim Flannery.''We thought we had that much time, but the new data indicates that in about mid-2005, we crossed that threshold.''

read more | digg story

82 women dead in first year of anti-abortion law in Nicaragua

For the Nicaraguan rich, a problematic pregnancy need not be a death sentence. You can fly to Miami or bribe a discreet private clinic in Managua. But in this wretchedly poor country most young women do not have money. Their choice is to go through with a pregnancy that may kill them, or attempt a DIY termination that may kill them.

read more | digg story

Al-Qaida Now Stronger Than Pre-9/11

How safe is the Bush administration keeping its citizenry? According to the AP, Al-Qaida is now STRONGER and more well-funded than it was before the September 11th attacks. So much for fighting them "over there" so we don't have to fight them "here".

read more | digg story

Wednesday, October 03, 2007 | MoJoBlog - Social Issues and Political Commentary: Afghanistan Seeing Most Violent Year Since 2001: Does Anyone Care? | MoJoBlog - Social Issues and Political Commentary: Afghanistan Seeing Most Violent Year Since 2001: Does Anyone Care?:
"Afghanistan is currently enduring its most violent year since the 2001 intervention, according to the U.N. Department of Safety and Security, and few members of the American press seem to care."

Judge rules: Bush can't hide Presidential records indefinitely.

Bush is not going to be allowed to write the history of the worst President in our History. The courts have ruled that his records are going to be public.

read more | digg story

Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » Our Media’s Failure to Report the Real Blackwater Story

Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » Our Media’s Failure to Report the Real Blackwater Story:
"Homicides are crimes, even if the victims are Iraqis. Do the media not see that those who help the suspects escape may also be criminally implicated? Or if the law is unclear, is not someone in the US government responsible for allowing this dangerous legal black hole to persist?"

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Waxman Confirms Existence Of Rove’s Politicization ‘Teams’

As part of our investigation, the Committee has received documents that confirm the existence of this “asset deployment team.”

read more | digg story

Monday, August 06, 2007

Video, Report Details Evangelism at Highest Levels of US Military

A report released publicly on Thursday by the Defense Department's (DOD) inspector general has found high-ranking Army and Air Force personnel violated long-standing military regulations when they participated in a promotional video for an evangelical Christian organization while in uniform and on active duty.

read more | digg story

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Un-kinder, Un-gentler

H.I.V. Patients Anxious as Support Programs Cut - New York Times:
"Because of strict limits on discretionary spending and the competing demands of other health initiatives, the Republican-led Congress and the Bush administration kept appropriations for the Ryan White program at about $2.1 billion over the last several years. At the same time, H.I.V., the virus that causes AIDS, spreads to an estimated 40,000 more people each year, more people are getting tested and seek care, and more patients live longer, requiring medicines costing thousands of dollars a month."

Is That Too Much To Ask?

Sunni Bloc Says It Is Quitting Iraqi Government - New York Times:
Al-Issawi said the decision to pull out from the government followed what he called Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's failure to respond to the Accordance Front. It gave him seven days to meet its demands, and the ultimatum expired Wednesday.

Among the demands: a pardon for security detainees not charged with specific crimes, the disbanding of militias and the participation of all groups represented in the government in dealing with security issues.
Looks like they wanted an actual democracy complete with freedom and security for all. Not happening.

NSA Spying Much Bigger Than Once Thought

The Bush administration's chief intelligence official said yesterday that President Bush authorized a series of secret surveillance activities under a single executive order in late 2001. The disclosure makes clear that a controversial National Security Agency program was part of a much broader operation than the president previously described.

read more | digg story

Why Are We There?

‘Untouchable’ corruption in Iraq ministries - Lisa Myers & the NBC News Investigative Unit -
The report, written by U.S. advisers to Iraq's anti-corruption agency, analyzes corruption in 12 ministries and finds devastating and grim problems. 'Corruption protected by senior members of the Iraqi government,' the report said, 'remains untouchable.'

One potential problem is in the office of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, according to the report.
Even our "puppets" don't follow our wishes, so why should we support them? Get out, NOW!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Gonzales's Pants On Fire

F.B.I. Chief Gives Account at Odds With Gonzales’s - New York Times:
"WASHINGTON, July 26 — The director of the F.B.I. offered testimony Thursday that sharply conflicted with Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales’s sworn statements about a 2004 confrontation in which top Justice Department officials threatened to resign over a secret intelligence operation."

Don't Back Down From Real Reform!

Lobbying Reform at Risk - New York Times:
"As Capitol lawmakers watch their credibility plummet in opinion polls, they can’t afford any further delay in requiring lobbyists to disclose the fortunes in campaign donations they harvest from clients out to buy legislative access. Both the House and Senate have approved separate bills containing this vital reform, but efforts to negotiate a final compromise have been blocked for weeks while the lobbying industry beats the drums for evasion."

Saudis Continue Support Of Terrorism In Iraq

Saudis’ Role in Iraq Frustrates U.S. Officials - New York Times:
Bush administration officials are voicing increasing anger at what they say has been Saudi Arabia’s counterproductive role in the Iraq war. They say that beyond regarding Mr. Maliki as an Iranian agent, the Saudis have offered financial support to Sunni groups in Iraq. Of an estimated 60 to 80 foreign fighters who enter Iraq each month, American military and intelligence officials say that nearly half are coming from Saudi Arabia and that the Saudis have not done enough to stem the flow.

One senior administration official says he has seen evidence that Saudi Arabia is providing financial support to opponents of Mr. Maliki. He declined to say whether that support was going to Sunni insurgents because, he said, “That would get into disagreements over who is an insurgent and who is not.”

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Senators Call For Special Counsel To Investigate Gonzales on Perjury

At a news conference this afternoon, four members of the Senate Judiciary Committee called for the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Alberto Gonzales on perjury charges.

read more | digg story

Researchers watch antibiotics, bacteria meet at atomic level

A new understanding of an enzyme important for the transfer of genetic information in bacteria may help scientists improve current antibiotics and also create antibiotics that are less vulnerable to resistance.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Why Liberals are More Dangerous than Terrorists

Why Liberals are More Dangerous than Terrorists:
In the absence of a functioning media to inform the public, liberals and progressives are the only thing standing in the way of a complete power grab by the neo-cons. This makes them far more dangerous than terrorists.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Bush A Bald-faced Liar

Bush Distorts Qaeda Links, Critics Assert - New York Times:
“The president wants to play on Al Qaeda because he thinks Americans understand the threat Al Qaeda poses,” said Bruce Riedel, an expert at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy and a former C.I.A. official. “But I don’t think he demonstrates that fighting Al Qaeda in Iraq precludes Al Qaeda from attacking America here tomorrow. Al Qaeda, both in Iraq and globally, thrives on the American occupation.”

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Bonehead Move By Bonehead Man

My Way News - Poll: Bush Move Unpopular in Libby Case: WASHINGTON (AP) -
President Bush's commutation of a prison term for a former aide to Vice President Cheney did not play well with the public or even Republicans, a survey found.

In a USA Today-Gallup poll released on Tuesday, 66 percent said Bush should not have intervened in the case of I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby, whose sentence for obstructing justice in the CIA leak case included a 2 1/2-year prison term.

Thirteen percent said the president's move was correct, and 6 percent said Bush should have given Libby a full pardon.

Bush didn't even receive much of a boost in support from Republicans. Among them, 44 percent said Bush should not have taken action in the case. Ten percent said he should have pardoned Libby while only 26 percent said Bush did the correct thing.

Republican Sexual Deviants

I wish there was a way to convince the vast majority of Americans that those that run for political office on a platform of addressing some defect in society's sexuality almost definitely have something wrong with their own sexuality. It's not that there aren't Dem deviants, it's just the vast majority of creeps and predators are members of the GOP

read more | digg story

Green Zone Is Pounded By Mortar Shells

More than two dozen mortar shells pounded the Green Zone on Tuesday, killing three people, including a U.S. military member, and injuring 18. Westerners in the Green Zone, considered the safest part of the capital, "are realizing that they are being recklessly exposed to danger and are getting angry" as the attacks grow more frequent and accurate.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Group News Blog: Impeachment, Worried about time?

Group News Blog: Impeachment, Worried about time?:
Impeached, Censured and Removed from office by:

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

just something to think about...

Why They Must Be Punished

Group News Blog: Rehab Nation:
"The bastards learned they could get away with it -- and, worse, picked up some extra clue about how not to get caught next time. And so we had Iran-Contra, and then Monica-gate, and now the horror that is this war. All of it is a direct result of Watergate and its botched aftermath. Every new episode -- all left mostly unpunished -- gave the Republican Mafia another tutorial on how to hoodwink the masses and shred the Constitution. Like a hardcore drunk whose co-dependents coddle him through a week-long binge, they discovered they could get away with anything, that the family would look the other way, and that no consequences would ever be forthcoming."

The Seventy-Seven Percent Solution

Poll: Calls To Get Out Of Iraq Escalate, 77% In CBS News Poll Say War's Going Badly, 40% Urge Withdrawal Of All U.S. Troops - CBS News

Along with the fact that Bush now has the same disapproval rating as Nixon did before resigning, can we say that it's time for BushCo to pack it in? Will Nancy Pelosi finally put impeachment back on the table? Stay tuned!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Iraq government continues to falter; no-confidence vote next? - AMERICAblog: A great nation deserves the truth

Iraq government continues to falter; no-confidence vote next? - AMERICAblog: A great nation deserves the truth:
"CBS reports that members of the Iraqi Accord Front (IAF), the largest Sunni bloc in Iraq's parliament, will call for a vote of no confidence for Prime Minister Maliki next week. CBS says a 'broad political alliance' called the 'Iraq Project,' apparently led by the IAF, claims it has the votes to pass the no-confidence vote."

Lawmakers Plan To Halt Funding For Guantanamo & Give Detainees Rights

WASHINGTON — Members of Congress plan to push measures to stop funding for the Guantanamo Bay detention center and grant new legal rights to detainees when Congress returns this week.

read more | digg story

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Unusual Candor

BBC NEWS | World | Asia-Pacific | Australia 'has Iraq oil interest':
Australian Defence Minister Brendan Nelson has admitted that securing oil supplies is a key factor behind the presence of Australian troops in Iraq.

He said maintaining 'resource security' in the Middle East was a priority.
Of course the PM is trying to play down the DM's comments as "stretching it a bit." Stretching it? Stretching what? The truth? I don't think so. It's a well known fact that Paul Wolfowitz once blabbed that it was all about the oil from before the start of the invasion (also reported by the BBC). Oil is also fueling the insurgency. It pollutes every part of the equation concerning the Middle East.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Daily Kos: A Pardon on the Installment Plan; An Investigation Sabotaged

Daily Kos: A Pardon on the Installment Plan; An Investigation Sabotaged:
And so it goes. Yet another transparent corruption, yet another investigation sabotaged, yet another enabling felon praised as martyr to the cause. America may at this rate find both its laws and its honor dismantled from within. From the broadcasting tower to the Senate floor, and from the opinion pages to the Department of Justice, there seem to be too few left with an interest in defending either one.

But it should be noted, for the record, that the President of the United States has just used his power of clemency to sabotage an active criminal investigation into the office of his own Vice President. I have heard tell that such things used to be considered scandalous.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Screw Impeachment, it's time to INDICT BUSH, CHENEY, RUMSFELD, RICE, et al.

Presenting information to Congress and the general public through deceit, craft, trickery, dishonest means, and fraudulent representations can be a CRIME ( 18 USC 371 ) , and Fmr. US Attorney Elizabeth de la Vega lays out the case against Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, et al.It's time for the criminals in the White House to take a perp-walk.

read more | digg story

FDL Explains Why

Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » The Latest Bunch of Bush Bullshit:
The reality is, of course, that a pardon - a full no-qualifications pardon - is the last thing that Scooter Libby will get. Why? Because, as Marcy and Christy have pointed out, a full pardon strips away Scooter’s ability to hide behind the Fifth Amendment when asked to testify under oath about Bush’s and Cheney’s involvement in outing Valerie Plame.

Unless Bush and the gang invent some new variation of the full pardon that doesn’t keep Scoots from pleading the Fifth (which is highly unlikely), a full pardon is the LAST thing that they will do in Scooter’s case. The LAST thing.
I've said that Libby couldn't be left to cool his heels in jail because he might let slip some of the actually incriminating details. They couldn't allow that and probably told him they'd make sure he wouldn't have to go to jail. This article explains why he won't get a full pardon.

Friday, June 29, 2007

The Next Step

Contempt of Congress:
The issuance of a Contempt of Congress citation would provoke the sort of Constitutional showdown that it now appears will be required if this administration is to be held to account for its abuses of power. In such a showdown between the legislative and executive branches, the third branch of the federal government, the judiciary, would be asked to decide whether the White House has a right to assert, as White House counsel Fred Fielding did in a letter telling the committee chairs that their demands would not be met.

The 'fear of being commanded to Capitol Hill to testify or having their documents produced to Congress' would prevent presidential advisers from communicating 'openly and honestly' with the president,' wrote Fielding.

Senate Judiciary Committee chair Patrick Leahy suggests, there is another sort of fear in play: the fear of having improper and potentially illegal schemes exposed.
I can hardly wait. And should the Supreme Court decide with the president against all precedent and in clear violation of the letter and spirit of the law, then Congress must take action to revise their charter and, if necessary, hold them in contempt as well.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Why Won't They Impeach?!

The 'I' word - The Boston Globe:
"Most Democratic politicians and strategists see impeachment as a loser. Right now, President Bush is one of the least popular presidents in American history, and Democratic leaders don't see any point in turning him into a political martyr. Just as important, they argue, the time-consuming, rancorous debates that the process would occasion would elbow any other business off the legislative agenda, leaving the Democratic Party little to show for its return to power on Capitol Hill.

To impeachment's champions, however, these tactical arguments are worth little. What's at stake, they argue, is the Constitution itself. 'I'd like to see [Bush and Cheney] tried and convicted and put behind bars,' says Washington's David Swanson, co-founder of After Downing Street, an organization dedicated to doing just that. 'That would be a satisfactory outcome. Not because I dislike them or think they're unpleasant people, but I don't want future presidents to think they can do these things.'"

More Bad News For All

Bits of News - Iraq War Going Once. Twice. Sold! To the Democrats!:
"Other than New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, every other declared Democratic candidate for the presidential primary have been careful to not nail their flag to the mast of complete withdrawal from Iraq, or ruling out a wider conflict with neighbouring Iran. The original proponents of the war from the disparate coalition making up the modern Republican Party might have had different motives for advocating the invasion. There is of course the much talked about neoconservatives, whose motives ranged from misguided idealism, again of a sort, to making the Middle East safe for Israel. There was the religious right, who had their own reasons for wanting a show down between good and evil in Biblical lands. And there's the Cheney wing, guided by avarice, mainly for the oil resources under the sands of Araby."

The author does not see the war ending any time soon, even with a Democratic president in office. There are too many of the "powers that be" in it for the long haul. They just don't (or won't) see a future without oil and therefore a future without U.S. involvement in the Middle East.

Monday, June 25, 2007

White House of Mirrors - New York Times

White House of Mirrors - New York Times:
"Governments have to keep secrets. But this administration has grossly abused that trust, routinely using claims of national security to hide policies that are immoral and almost certainly illegal, to avoid embarrassment, and to pursue Mr. Bush’s dreams of an imperial presidency."

News Hounds: New Low for Sean Hannity and FOX

News Hounds: New Low for Sean Hannity and FOX: "To leave out Rumsfeld, Cheney, Wolfowitz, Rove, Bush and others, and try to paint Hillary as the responsible party for this Iraq war, now that even FOX can't pretend things are going well, is a journalistic abomination lacking any intellectual value or merit whatsoever!"

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Your Tax Dollars At Work

McClatchy Washington Bureau | 06/18/2007 | Politics weakens Justice Dept. independence:
"As early as 2002, administration policymakers, Republican legislators and GOP party officials began injecting politics into criminal investigations and civil and voting rights enforcement and applying political litmus tests to judges and career lawyers at the Justice Department."

For the GOP, that is. Sounds like it ought to be illegal. Just sayin'.

DOJ official accused of blocking suits into alleged violations

A former Justice Department political appointee blocked career lawyers from filing at least three lawsuits charging local and county governments with violating the voting rights of African-Americans and other minorities, seven former senior department employees charged Monday.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Deleted Emails: "Most Serious Breach of the Presidential Records Act"

"The Committee has obtained evidence of potentially extensive violations of the Presidential Records Act by senior White House officials... These violations could be the most serious breach of the Presidential Records Act in the 30-year history of the law."I'm willing to bet that it is and that it will still take a veritable hurricane of letters and calls to representatives to get anything to happen, I mean really happen (indictment, impeachment, arrest) about it. This administration and the Republican Party have lowered the bar so far that it's impossible to get below it.

read more | digg story

Monday, June 18, 2007

Democrats inability to end Iraq War as promised is angering voters

"If Democrats fail to reverse course, the dynamics in the 2008 elections may shift significantly, allowing Republicans to run as the party of change ... only two years after Democrats successfully campaigned on that same theme," Senate Republican leaders told their ranks in a letter last week.

read more | digg story

Over 140,000 Rove Emails Illegally Destroyed

Nico Pitney: An investigation led by Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) uncovers ‘extensive destruction’ of RNC emails, violations of Records Act.

read more | digg story

What Bush Hath Wrought

Iraq now ranked second among world's failed states | Reuters:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iraq has emerged as the world's second most unstable country, behind Sudan, more than four years after President George W. Bush ordered the U.S. invasion to topple Saddam Hussein, according to a survey released on Monday.

The 2007 Failed States Index, produced by Foreign Policy magazine and the Fund for Peace, said Iraq suffered a third straight year of deterioration in 2006 with diminished results across a range of social, economic, political and military indicators. Iraq ranked fourth last year.
Heck of a job, W!

Oh, and Afghanistan was eighth on the list. Way to follow through, W!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Daily Show: Arming the Sunnis or "The enemy of my enemy is my friend."

I feel a little better already…However, what small relief Magic Lute just gave me is gone as I realized that the US has gone completely mad. We are now arming the Sunnis insurgents (our enemy) to…get this…attack al-Qaeda…Huh? WTF? Oh…hear it comes…The media does it again…

read more | digg story

Letter From The Heart

Letter from VT Mom:
In high school, while your children were doing what kids that age should be doing, mine labored over a suicide note, drafting and redrafting it to be sure his family knew how much he loved them. My sobbing 17-year-old tore the heart out of me as he choked out that he just couldn't bear to continue living any longer, that he didn't want to be gay and that he couldn't face a life without dignity.

You have the audacity to talk about protecting families and children from the homosexual menace, while you yourselves tear apart families and drive children to despair. I don't know why my son is gay, but I do know that God didn't put him, and millions like him, on this Earth to give you someone to abuse. God gave you brains so that you could think, and it's about time you started doing that.
This should be required reading in all the schools and libraries in the country. It deserves to be circulated and heeded.

If It Quacks Like A Duck...

Think Progress » Justice Dept. IG Investigating Possible Gonzales Obstruction Of Justice Incident:
The Senate Judiciary Committee revealed today that the Justice Department’s Inspector General Glenn Fine is investigating whether Attorney General Alberto Gonzales may have acted unethically or illegally by attempting to “coach” Monica Goodling’s testimony.

In May, Goodling testified before Congress that, prior to resigning from the DoJ, she had an “uncomfortable” conversation with Gonzales, in which he “laid out” his version of the attorney firings and asked if she “had any reaction to his iteration.” Goodling said she did not think it was “appropriate for us to talk about that at that point.”
...and it smells like a duck, it's a duck! Or in this case, obstruction of justice. I'll have more faith in this nation and its government when charges are brought and trials held. Until then, it's just more talk.

Class. Real Class.

Libby judge harassed after sentencing - Yahoo! News:
"'I received a number of angry, harassing, mean-spirited phone calls and letters,' U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton said. 'Some of those were wishing bad things on me and my family.'"


Justice Dept. Reshapes Its Civil Rights Mission - New York Times: "“They are engaging in freewheeling social engineering,” said Ayesha Khan, counsel for Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and “using the power of the federal government to put in place an ideological, not constitutional agenda.”

The department declined to make available for interviews Assistant Attorney General Wan J. Kim, who heads the civil rights division, or Eric Treene, who holds the newly created position of special counsel for religious discrimination."

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Pentagon: Iraqi Violence Still Rising

My Way News - Pentagon: Iraqi Violence Still Rising:
"WASHINGTON (AP) - Violence in Iraq, as measured by casualties among troops and civilians, has edged higher despite the U.S.-led security push in Baghdad, the Pentagon told Congress on Wednesday."

The Moral Majority

Media Matters - The Progressive Majority: Why a Conservative America is a Myth

It's About Time!

Panels Issue Subpoenas to Former Bush Aides -
The House and Senate Judiciary panels issued subpoenas today for former White House counsel Harriet Miers and others, escalating the legal showdown between Democrats in Congress and the Bush administration over the Justice Department's firing of nine U.S. attorneys last year.

The House Judiciary Committee issued a subpoena for testimony and documents from Miers, while the Senate Judiciary panel issued subpoenas demanding the same from Sara M. Taylor, former White House political director. Both panels also issued separate subpoenas for White House documents related to the dismissals
I hope they follow through on these and get a real investigation going. We need to see some results and soon!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Keith Olbermann - the entire government has failed us

Very good. Worth watching. It is a very outspoken claim but he backs up all his points. It makes a lot of sense.

read more | digg story

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Lieberman Backs Limited U.S. Attacks on Iran - New York Times

Lieberman Backs Limited U.S. Attacks on Iran - New York Times
"Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, an independent who strongly supports the war in Iraq, said today that unless Iran stops training Iraqis to carry out anti-coalition attacks, the United States should launch cross-border attacks into Iran."

The man who once said he wasn't Bush now wants more war with more countries in the Middle East. Why did you elect this man, Connecticut? Why?!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Olbermann: Latest J.F.K. Terror Plot *DEBUNKED!*


read more | digg story

Yet Another Crony Resigns

Think Progress » Commerce Department Inspector General resigns.:
Facing multiple investigations and an impending report recommending he be punished for violating the whistle-blower protection law, Commerce Department Inspector General Johnnie E. Frazier resigned yesterday. Frazier is “the subject of three separate government investigations into allegations that he misspent his budget and retaliated against employees who raised concerns about his actions.” His resignation is effective June 29.
Couldn't happen to a nicer guy, unless it was Rove or Abu or Dick or....

Friday, June 08, 2007

Steeplejacking -- How the Christian Right is Hijacking Mainstream Religion

FTA: An unprecedented look inside the battle for religion in America, Steeplejacking: How the Christian Right is Hijacking Mainstream Religion exposes how a strident theocratic minority is attacking—or "steeplejacking"—mainstream churches in order to eliminate progressive voices and take control of America's historic mainline denominations.

read more | digg story

A Torturer Repents?

The Tortured Lives of Interrogators -
Then a soldier's aunt sent over several copies of Viktor E. Frankel's Holocaust memoir, 'Man's Search for Meaning.' Lagouranis found himself trying to pick up tips from the Nazis. He realized he had gone too far.

At that point, Lagouranis said, he moderated his techniques and submitted sworn statements to supervisors concerning prisoner abuse.

'I couldn't make sense of the moral system' in Iraq, he said. 'I couldn't figure out what was right and wrong. There were no rules. They literally said, 'Be creative.' '

Lagouranis blames the Bush administration: 'They say this is a different kind of war. Different rules for terrorists. Total crap.'
I read the same book by Frankel for freshman class in college. I don't remember thinking of the torture mentions as anything to learn from beyond the cruelty of man to man. But then, I'm not a torturer.

As to that, it would seem that inhuman situations easily lead to inhuman responses. Lagouranis is an American and was told by his superiors to "be creative" in the pursuit of information at all costs. Of course, the quality of information gained by torture is less than useful for anything other than being able to say it was gained. Like the use of torture in the Spanish Inquisition or any other witch-hunt conflagration, it becomes an end in itself. It is not a "true" interrogation technique since it does not produce useful information in most cases, and even the rare occasions when it does are so random as to be of no value anyway since they cannot be depended upon, or even evaluated, until verified by other means which would have sufficed in the first place.

The ends can never justify the means. Once we begin to use the methods we assign to our enemies, we become like them and have lost the real war.

Gonzales no-confidence vote set for Monday

Just like the headline says, the Senate's version of the Gonzales no-confidence vote has been set for Monday.

read more | digg story

Impeachment on a Roll

Since Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) filed his impeachment bill against Cheney back April 24, five other members of the House have signed on as co-sponsors

read more | digg story

Another Bush Crony Won't Give Up His Post

Complaints Heard About NASA Inspector General -
The report of the Integrity Committee, made up of three inspectors general, a top FBI official and other senior ethics officers, said that Cobb had abused his authority by mistreating his staff. It also found that he had created the appearance of a lack of independence by lunching, drinking and golfing with top NASA officials. The committee, which was established by the executive branch, did not find substance to charges that Cobb had improperly overlooked safety complaints by whistle-blowers.

Cobb said the Integrity Committee's 'criticisms are not based on facts or law and are wrong.'

Inspectors general are appointed to serve as watchdogs for major federal agencies.
So, what is it with these people? It comes out that they acted without integrity, unethically, or outright broke the law, and all they have to do is refuse to leave? Where are the "teeth" in the checks and balances system? Is Justice so corrupted, and ethics so foreign to this government, that no crime goes punished? Are there any laws still in effect at the White House, its branch of government, or at Justice? What's happened to this country?!

Cheney's Law

Official: Cheney Urged Wiretaps -
Comey's disclosures, made in response to written questions from the Senate Judiciary Committee, indicate that Cheney and his aides were more closely involved than previously known in a fierce internal battle over the legality of the warrantless surveillance program. The program allowed the National Security Agency to monitor phone calls and e-mails between the United States and overseas.

Comey said that Cheney's office later blocked the promotion of a senior Justice Department lawyer, Patrick Philbin, because of his role in raising concerns about the surveillance.
Where does the big Dick get off telling the Justice Department what is or is not legal? No wonder this country is sinking into despotism. Look who's giving the orders!

Godless in Union Square

A new book describes how the boomer generation is retreating from its ideals and becoming part of the militaristic majority. As the American Empire crumbles, everybody grabs for what they can. Some revelations from Nancy Pelosi's daughter make for some very grim, very important considerations for the too-near future.

read more | digg story

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Another Woman Journalist Killed In Afghanistan

Afghans Seek Men Who Killed Broadcaster as She Slept - New York Times

Whether it's the Taliban or just Islamist militants of some other ilk, this is disgraceful. What kind of "democracy" exists in Afghanistan, and where will it be a few years down the road if women are suppressed and forced to be subservient once again in the name of Islam or any other pretense?

Human rights, especially those of women, are trampled every day in most of the Middle East. Our invasions and occupations have not helped (and in the case of Iraq, have hurt). We need to raise the standard of living for the general population in this and other regions. Sanctions and war will not change the situation and only seem to make it worse.

Yeah, We'll Get Back To You On That

Europe and U.S. Reach Climate Deal - New York Times:
"HEILIGENDAMM, Germany, June 7 — The United States agreed today to “seriously consider” a European proposal to combat global warming by halving greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, breaking a trans-Atlantic deadlock at a meeting here of the world’s richest industrial nations."

Don't expect anything concrete from this administration when it comes to cutting carbon emissions. It's just more smoke and mirrors (mostly smoke) to keep the base happy while the cartels continue to pump and make a fortune.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

What About The Rule Of Law?

FTA: "Pardoning Libby would send the public the message that this White House thinks it is above the law. It's a point critics have made time and time again, whether it relates to the treatment of detainees, warrantless wiretapping or the purge of insufficiently partisan U.S. attorneys. But this time, the charge just might really stick."

read more | digg story

Pakistan Arrests Hundreds From Opposition Parties

Things are getting worse for "democracy" in Pakistan. FTA: "A government-led crackdown against the news media and the political opposition intensified here Tuesday, with hundreds of party workers arrested and television stations bracing for raids."

read more | digg story

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Bush's Libby Dilemma

Bush Faces Libby Pardon Dilemma -
The 2-1/2 year sentence imposed on former White House aide I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby today puts new pressure on President Bush, who may soon confront the choice of triggering a fresh political storm by pardoning a convicted perjurer or letting one of the early architects of his administration head off to prison.

Libby, who served as assistant to the president and chief of staff to Vice President Cheney until his indictment in late 2005, was ordered to serve 30 months behind bars and pay a $250,000 fine for committing perjury and obstruction of justice in the CIA leak case. But most disturbing to the White House may be comments by the judge indicating that he is inclined to order Libby to begin serving the sentence right away.
So either way, BushCo gets the short end of the stick. Maybe Libby will wax more candid once he's had a few weeks in the cooler. I'm betting (hoping?) Bush pardons him, because it would be easier for him (and Cheney) to withstand the shit-storm a pardon causes than the shit-hurricane a singing Libby would set off.

Jefferson Steps Down

Jefferson Steps Down From House Panel -

No Kidding?

An Unacceptable Nominee - New York Times:
"President Bush’s latest appeals court nominee, Leslie Southwick, has a disturbing history of insensitivity to blacks and other minority groups. The Senate should reject this nomination and make clear to the White House that it will reject all future nominees who do not meet the high standards of fairness that are essential for such important posts."

Would BushCo ever nominate anybody to anything with an eye toward doing the right thing for the people? No, not likely. This is one more reason we should impeach BushCo now before any more damage can be done.

Nancy, You Got Some 'Splainin' To Do!

WP: Discontent over Iraq increasing, poll finds - Highlights -
"Growing frustration with the performance of the Democratic Congress, combined with widespread public pessimism over President Bush's temporary troop buildup in Iraq, has left satisfaction with the overall direction of the country at its lowest point in more than a decade, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll."

I have to admit, I'm getting pissed off with the Congressional Dems myself. They're listening to the DCCC too much and not enough to the DNC and their constituents. They know why we elected them, and they're not making it happen.

My two senators (I live in New York state) voted against the Iraq spending bill, but my congressperson, Kirsten Gillibrand, voted for it. She obviously wasn't listening. She should start doing so real soon if she wants to stay where she is for more than a term.

Scooter Going To Jail

My Way News - Libby Sentenced to 2 1/2 Years in Prison:
"WASHINGTON (AP) - Former White House aide I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison Tuesday for lying and obstructing the CIA leak investigation."

Go F**k Yourself, Dick!

Court Rebuffs F.C.C. on Fines for Indecency - New York Times:
"If President Bush and Vice President Cheney can blurt out vulgar language, then the government cannot punish broadcast television stations for broadcasting the same words in similarly fleeting contexts."

Monday, June 04, 2007

Mushareff Cracks Down On Media In Pakistan

Current regulations related to television have been extended to the internet and mobile phones.Some regulations on who is allowed to be licensed to broadcast in Pakistan have been extended to cover "any foreign non-governmental organisation".

read more | digg story

I Love Vermont!

The Breakway Republic Of Vermont? , Small Cadre Of Writers And Academics Plots A Secession Strategy - CBS News:
"Disillusioned by what they call an empire about to fall, a small cadre of writers and academics is plotting political strategy and planting the seeds of separatism."

I hope they can get away with this. It gives me hope for this sad, sad world.

Reasons We Are In Iraq

The REAL reasons.

read more | digg story

U.S. Cutting Back On Climate Monitoring

U.S. scientists will soon lose much of their ability in space to monitor for global warming...As President Bush heads to a summit of industrial nations in Germany with a new initiative to reduce the greenhouse gases blamed for climate change, his administration is cutting back on efforts to measure their effects.

read more | digg story

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Was JFK Plot Another Overblown Distraction?

FTA: "Richard Kuprewicz, a pipeline expert and president of Accufacts Inc., an energy consulting firm that focuses on pipelines and tank farms, said the force of explosion would depend on the amount of fuel under pressure, but it would not travel up and down the line."

read more | digg story

Pray the Gay Away

George W. Bush has nominated a Surgeon General who promotes healing gays by praying away their lifestyle. Yup, you read that right: Bush's nominee for Surgeon General believes that gays should just pray harder to be cured of their choice. Except, of course, he doesn't want gays to minister or become church members...

read more | digg story

U.S. - India Nuke Deal Talks Breakdown

The US and India have failed to resolve differences over a proposed landmark deal on nuclear co-operation after three days of negotiations in Delhi.

read more | digg story

Friday, June 01, 2007

Bush Farts Monkeys

Bush Proposes Goals on Greenhouse Gas Emissions - New York Times

And if you think he meant anything he said about greenhouse gas emissions, then you probably believe the title of this post as well.

Deficit Much Larger Than Stated
The federal government recorded a $1.3 trillion loss last year — far more than the official $248 billion deficit — when corporate-style accounting standards are used, a USA TODAY analysis shows.

The loss reflects a continued deterioration in the finances of Social Security and government retirement programs for civil servants and military personnel. The loss — equal to $11,434 per household — is more than Americans paid in income taxes in 2006.

And Sharks Have Bits Of Humans In Them

News in Science - Humans have a bit of shark in them - 30/05/2007


Battlestar Galactica's Next Is Last Season


Plame Sues C.I.A. for Blocking Her Memoir - New York Times

Plame Sues C.I.A. for Blocking Her Memoir - New York Times:
"Valerie Wilson, the former intelligence operative at the heart of an investigation that reached into the White House, sued the Central Intelligence Agency in federal court in New York yesterday over its refusal to allow her to publish a memoir that would discuss how long she had worked for the agency."


My Way News - Group Warns Russia Nuclear Dump Unstable: "OSLO, Norway (AP) - A nuclear waste dump in the Russia Arctic may be in danger of exploding because of corrosion caused by salt water in enormous storage tanks, the Norwegian environmental group Bellona warned Friday."

Uhm, Okay....

Think Progress » Report: In Meeting, ‘Wild-Eyed’ Bush Thumped Chest While Repeating ‘I Am The President!’

Time for a vacation, maybe a nice, peaceful cell....

Nearly 30 DOJ Officials Threatened To Quit After Ashcroft Hospital Visit

Appalled by the White House's heavy-handed attempt to coerce the gravely ill attorney general, virtually the entire top leadership of the Justice Department is threatening to resign.

read more | digg story

Solar Gets A Boost

40% efficient solar cells to be used for solar electricity

Conservative Catholics Organize To Sink Rudy | The Huffington Post

The early success of Rudy Giuliani's presidential bid has provoked a groundswell of opposition from disparate forces including conservative Catholics, remnants of Pat Buchanan's presidential campaigns and regional political operatives seeking to break into the Republican firmament.

read more | digg story

Bye-bye, Rudy -- Part 2

Conservative Catholics Organize To Sink Rudy | The Huffington Post:
The early success of Rudy Giuliani's presidential bid has provoked a groundswell of opposition from disparate forces including conservative Catholics, remnants of Pat Buchanan's presidential campaigns and regional political operatives seeking to break into the Republican firmament.

The opposition is united in its determination to block Giuliani, a supporter of abortion rights and gay rights, from becoming the GOP's standard bearer. But lurking just beneath the surface is another motive for these anti-Giuliani conservatives: cash. The groups hope to benefit from a large constituency of donors willing to write big checks to bring down the former New York City mayor. The donors include backers of Giuliani's competitors as well as ideologues of the right.

The new organizations are relying on two fundraising models, both of which were highly successful in previous attacks. One is the drive in 2005 to force White House counsel Harriet Miers to withdraw her nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court. That campaign, spearheaded by conservatives opposed to Miers, raised an estimated $2 million. The other is the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth campaign in 2004, which began with a modest budget but ended up raising millions in an effort to destroy John Kerry's reputation as a war hero.
Just feel the warmth!

Empty Wheel Pays Appropriate Homage To Saint Libby

The Next Hurrah: I Present to You: Saint Libby:
Do you suppose anyone has told Saint Reagan he has been usurped?

The portrayal of Libby's work on the highly partisan Cox Committee--effectively a post-Iran-Contra attempt to blame Democrats for giving the Chinese nukes when in fact the Iran-Contra conspiracists seem to have, is equally, um, creative. And if you're wondering, Chris Cox does appear to be one of Libby's 160 admirers, celebrating him all the time as a paragon of bipartisan spirit.

Then there is the extended effort to paint Libby as open-minded, willing to listen to ideas contrary to his own. Like those of Joe Wilson, apparently. Or those of the large number of sane people who knew that the Iraq War was a disaster waiting to happen. It sure looks like he listened to them.
Libby should go to jail for blocking Fitzgerald from getting to the other criminals in the White House. In fact, he should be held until he reveals the verifiable truth about what happened in the White House and who is truly responsible for the Plame leak; i.e., until he turns state's evidence on Cheney and Rove.

Senator Kyl The Rat On FOIA Reform

Kyl Unmasked as 'Senator Secrecy' on FOIA Reform; Defends Big Government's First Line of Defense:
Sen. Jon Kyl, R-AZ, has conceded that he is the senator behind the secret hold on the proposed Open Government Reform Act of 2007, which would provide much-needed improvements in the federal Freedom of Information Act.

AP reports that Kyl explains his decision to place the secret hold on the bill as a result of 'uncharacteristically strong' objections from the Justice Department. Kyl will maintain his hold until supporters of the FOIA reform bill, which includes its primary architect, Sen. John Cornyn, R-TX, and opponents can work out their differences.
Yeah, like surrendering civil liberties and not expecting the government to respond to requests for information.

Notice that it's the Justice Department that raised the stink with Kyl to get him to block the reform bill. They are probably worried that with reform somebody might find out that they've secretly changed their name to the Voter Suppression In The Service Of The Class War And Saving The President From Impeachment Department.

Rove Doesn't Get His Way

Ex-aide to Rove resigns amid U.S. attorney flap -
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The former White House aide whose appointment to a U.S. attorney's post helped fuel the furor over the forced resignations of eight federal prosecutors will resign Friday, according to a news release.
Do you think, maybe, they were desperate to get somebody like Griffin into the U.S. attorney position in Little Rock because of a certain someone with the initials HRC running for president?
A congressional investigation into the firings is ongoing. E-mails released as part of the probe show that White House and Justice Department officials discussed for months how to get Griffin into the U.S. attorney's office in Little Rock.

The e-mails also revealed discussions about whether the Justice Department should tap a controversial provision of the Patriot Act allowing Gonzales to appoint U.S. attorneys without Senate confirmation.
They were certainly anxious to get this done. Something tells me it wasn't just because Rove thought he was a nice guy.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

And The Worst News

My Way News - Bush Sees South Korea Model for Iraq:
"WASHINGTON (AP) - President Bush envisions a long-term U.S. troop presence in Iraq similar to the one in South Korea where American forces have helped keep an uneasy peace for more than 50 years, the White House said Wednesday."

Except that S. Korean's aren't trying to blow us up or drive us out violently. Not yet, anyway.

Go, John!

My Way News - Edwards Wants Probe of High Gas Prices:
"SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Democratic presidential hopeful John Edwards says a wave of mergers in the oil industry should be investigated by the Justice Department to see what impact they have had on soaring gasoline prices."I hope Edwards is a man of his word. I like most of his ideas about the economy, the middle-class and poor, the health system, and ending the occupation of Iraq. I just wish I could bring myself to trust anybody in politics these days to do the right things once they get into office. Still, I think he'd be way better than any Republican candidate, and most of the Democratic ones as well. He and Obama are my choice of best ticket, and I'm from New York State (hear me, Hillary? Cut your ties with Big Business and maybe we can reconcile)!

And More Bad News

U.S. Economic Growth Weakest in Over 4 Years - New York Times:
"The economy grew at less than half the rate first estimated in the first quarter, the Commerce Department said today in its revision of the nation’s gross domestic product."

And Some Bad News, Too

Melamine From U.S. Put in Feed - New York Times:
Ever since pet food contaminated with an industrial chemical was traced to shipments of wheat flour from China, American officials have concentrated on cracking down on imports.

It turns out the problem was closer to home, too.

Hey, Some Good News For A Change!

Coca-Cola and PepsiCo Agree to Curb Animal Tests - New York Times

Dems Trying To Right A Wrong

My Way News - Democrats Seek to Overturn Pay Ruling


Top NASA Official Doubts Global Warming:
Griffin's comments immediately drew stunned reaction from James Hansen, NASA's top climate scientist at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York.

'It's an incredibly arrogant and ignorant statement,' Hansen told ABC News. 'It indicates a complete ignorance of understanding the implications of climate change.'

Hansen believes Griffin's comments fly in the face of well-established scientific knowledge that hundreds of NASA scientists have contributed to.

'It's unbelievable,' said Hansen. 'I thought he had been misquoted. It's so unbelievable.'
And lest ye' think that this has nothing to do with BushCo and the wanton suppression of scientific truth -- as well as the subjugation of the quality of human life to corporate greed and profit -- consider this statement near the end of the article:
Last year, many NASA scientists were upset when reports surfaced that the agency had quietly deleted the phrase "to understand and protect our home planet" from the NASA mission statement. The scientists believe research on issues like climate change will suffer as NASA shifts priorities toward exploration missions to the moon and Mars.
Yeah, who cares about a little climate change here on Earth when WonderChimp is all excited about goin' to Mars?


Minnesota case fits pattern in U.S. attorneys flap - Los Angeles Times

Okay, I'm no lawyer, but what Gonzales and the other cronies did about Heffelfinger's not going along with "voter fraud" investigations in order to suppress the native American vote and give Republican candidates a better chance of being elected MUST BE ILLEGAL in more ways than one. The civil rights issues alone should be more than enough to put away half of the Justice Department's top administrators.

Come on, Congress!!! Get it in gear, will you?! Jeezzzz!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

No Kidding?

U.S., Iran near bottom of 'Peace Index' - World News -
WASHINGTON - The United States and Iran finished in a virtual dead heat, and way down the list, in a magazine's assessment of the peacefulness of 121 countries.

The United States placed 96th and Iran came in 97th on the global index released Wednesday by researchers at the Economist magazine.
Never would have guessed this would happen. I really thought Iran would be way ahead of the U.S. Much closes than I imagined.

It's About Time!

Some Hitherto Staunch G.O.P. Voters Souring on Iraq - New York Times

Iran Not The Only Source Of Weapons Being Used In Iraq

The First Post: Neighbours arm their proxies in Iraq's civil war:
What the American authorities are reluctant to admit, however, is that there are signs that the Sunnis of Saudi Arabia and their allies - including Jordan - have been equipping and training Sunni extremists in Iraq for some time now. Critically, not all the weaponry and munitions have been used against the militants' Shia and Kurdish Iraqi enemies. Some of them - including lethal roadside bombs - have been aimed at US forces.

'The growth of the official and unofficial Saudi and Jordanian support for the militants is one of the most worrying developments,' a senior British officer has told me privately after a visit to Iraq.
It's not difficult to understand why the Bushies don't bother to mention that their allies are also arming sectarian groups in Iraq, especially since some of these end up being used against American and coalition troops. The Bushies want people to concentrate on Iran and its drive for nuclear power, not on the support the Saudis and other Middle East players are giving to the Sunnis in Iraq.

I mean, what would people think if they were aware that some of the people who were actually responsible for the attacks of 9/11 were actively involved in making things worse for our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, but were not shiites or alQaeda but rather those who prefer to pose as our allies in Middle East? Think you know who the real enemy is? Chances are, you're wrong, even when you're right.

IRAQ: From Worse to Worst?

IRAQ: From Worse to Worst?:
"ARBIL, Iraq, May 29 (IPS) - More than four months after the launch of the U.S. government's new Iraq strategy aimed at curbing violence in this war-torn country, the situation here shows no clear signs of improvement. Indeed, a recent report by a British think tank warns that Iraq is a 'failure' on the verge of 'collapse and fragmentation.' "

Cool! - NBC announces schedule, shows:
NBC announces schedule, shows
'Heroes' gets second series
I was complaining to the missus about my favorite shows going on hiatus and then losing their audience. Looks like NBC, at least, has figured out that the hiatus is a killer. Having a show's spinoff become the "filler" for a full season is a great idea, though having more episodes of the actual show would be nice. Anything as long as they don't break a good show's momentum and story line.

Plame Was Covert Agent At Time Of Leak -- MSNBC

No more denials! Valerie Plame was in fact a covert operative of the CIA when her name was leaked to the press by the White House. Despite attempt to bury this story with non-accurate description, the truth is out once and for all.

read more | digg story

Blood and oil: How the West will profit from Iraq's most precious commodity

The 'IoS' today reveals a draft for a new law that would give Western oil companies a massive share in the third largest reserves in the world. To the victors, the oil? That is how some experts view this unprecedented arrangement with a major Middle East oil producer that guarantees investors huge profits for the next 30 years

read more | digg story

Bush's Petro-Cartel Almost Has Iraq's Oil

Even as Iraq is on the verge of splintering into a sectarian civil war, four big oil companies are on the verge of locking up its massive, profitable reserves, known to everyone in the petroleum industry as "the prize.

read more | digg story

Big OIL plan to rip off Iraq for 30 years cited on floor of House

For the first time, a congressman talks about the central role of the oil industry in causing and continuing the Iraq War, including pushing for oil contracts that take up to 70% of the oil profits out of the country (and the oil companies don't have a very good track record of sharing the wealth with us either, do they?)

read more | digg story

Kucinich Reminds Congress And The People What It's Oil About

The Truth About Oil and Iraq | Kucinich for President 2008:
This administration has led Congress into thinking that this bill is about fair distribution of oil revenues. In fact, as I mentioned earlier, except for three scant lines, the entire 33-page hydrocarbon law creates a structure to facilitate the privatization of Iraq oil.

Now, the war in Iraq is a stain on American history. Let us not further besmirch our Nation by participating in an outrageous exploitation of a nation which is in shambles due to the U.S. intervention.
And without the World Wide Web, I probably would have missed this. It's not that I didn't know this already, but that somebody in Congress made it clear to the floor that this is the case, yet they go on as if they never heard such a thing.

Revealed: Why Your Sons and Daughters Died in Iraq

Excellent analysis of the role of oil in the Iraq situation.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

A Precedent Of Sorts

ABC News: U.S. Military Wanted to Provoke War With Cuba:
In the early 1960s, America's top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba.

Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating violent terrorism in U.S. cities.
I often hear my middle-class friends say things like, "that's just conspiracy talk," and "nobody would ever really think of doing such a thing," when the subjects of 9/11 or American fascism come up. Let's face it, weird, devious and despicable conspiracies have been a part of the American political landscape for decades, if not centuries. This country wouldn't even exist without the original conspiracy formed to rebel against the British and fight the Revolutionary War. Why is it so difficult for most people to imagine anything like this happening again now? Just look at the level of deceit and dissembling going on at this time with the attorney firings, or the domestic surveillance hearings, or the flack about Iraq.

When will the majority of Americans come to see that this administration and its military leadership are capable of anything when it comes to advancing their cause? It's happened or nearly happened in the past with ostensibly better people and better justifications in some cases; why wouldn't we expect it to happen now?

Top Rove Aide, Sara Taylor, Implicated In Attorney Scandal

The Raw Story | Top Rove aide, implicated in Attorneys firings, clears out officeLooks like another White House "honey" is about to take a fall for the administration. I wonder if this one will actually reveal anything substantial to the investigation, or just throw somebody else under the bus in a misguided attempt to save the boss. I guess we'll find out.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Troops Want To Come Home, Know It's Over

Doubts Grow as G.I.’s in Iraq Find Allies in Enemy Ranks - New York Times:
With few reliable surveys of soldiers’ attitudes, it is impossible to simply extrapolate from the small number of soldiers in Delta Company. But in interviews with more than a dozen soldiers over a one-week period with this 83-man unit, most said they were disillusioned by repeated deployments, by what they saw as the abysmal performance of Iraqi security forces and by a conflict that they considered a civil war, one they had no ability to stop.

They had seen shadowy militia commanders installed as Iraqi Army officers, they said, had come under increasing attack from roadside bombs — planted within sight of Iraqi Army checkpoints — and had fought against Iraqi soldiers whom they thought were their allies.

“In 2003, 2004, 100 percent of the soldiers wanted to be here, to fight this war,” said Sgt. First Class David Moore, a self-described “conservative Texas Republican” and platoon sergeant who strongly advocates an American withdrawal. “Now, 95 percent of my platoon agrees with me.”
The Repuglicans keep saying the troops want victory, that they don't want to leave before the job is over. Well, it IS over, and most of the troops know it and want to come home.

We had no business going there. We have no business being there. The only, repeat ONLY, people who want the war in Iraq to continue are the defense contractors, weapons makers, and oil sellers.

Supporting our troops means protecting them from the profiteers and bringing them home, taking care of them and rewarding them for their service. The Bush administration's idea of "support" is to wrongfully send them into harm's way, keep them there long past any useful purpose, and then abandon them once they return home and leave service.

Arrest everybody in the White House and Pentagon that helped make this happen and put them on trial for war crimes and crimes against the U.S. military and the American people. Do this now, and save some lives.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Now I've Heard And Seen Everything

Oil Industry Says Biofuel Push May Hurt at Pump - New York Times:
And some oil executives are now warning that the current shortages of fuel could become a long-term problem, leading to stubbornly higher prices at the pump.

They point to a surprising culprit: uncertainty created by the government’s push to increase the supply of biofuels like ethanol in coming years.

In his State of the Union address in January, President Bush called for a sharp increase in the use of biofuels, along with some improvement in automobile fuel efficiency to reduce America’s use of gasoline by 20 percent within 10 years. Congress is considering legislation calling for a nearly fivefold increase in the use of ethanol.

That has forced many oil companies to reconsider or scale back their plans for constructing new refinery capacity.
So the latest excuse for ever higher gasoline prices is our planning to use less in the future?!!! The temerity! The hubris! The greed!!!

Say Goodnight, Rudy

For the First Time, New York Links a Death to 9/11 Dust - New York Times:
“The city medical examiner has now accepted what thousands of people with 9/11-related illnesses and their doctors have long understood: that ground zero dust was harmful and even deadly,” said Representative Carolyn B. Maloney."Considering the revelations of late concerning Rudy's pre- and post-9/11 shortcomings, this will probably keep the controversy center stage during the primaries, and that can't be good for Mr. Giuliani. Good for us, though.

The Next Recess Appointee?

Candidate to Lead Consumer Agency Withdraws - New York Times:
Mr. Baroody was the latest in a line of industry executives and lawyers put forward by President Bush to head safety agencies. Some of them have been critical of excessive regulation and have advocated rolling back numerous rules.

His nomination began to founder after the disclosure last Wednesday that he would be receiving a $150,000 special payment from the association, and that the severance package was amended by the association in January, shortly after he was identified as the top candidate for the post.
I'm just wondering, is all. We know what happened the last time somebody withdrew from a BushCo nomination.

Feingold: ‘This Is No Time To Back Off’

Think Progress » Feingold: ‘This Is No Time To Back Off’:
"You know what’s going to happen in September? They’ll bring General Petraeus back and he’ll say, Just give me until the end of year. I think things are turning around. And then we’ll be out of session, come back in late January, February, and the fact is a thousand more troops will lose their lives in a situation that doesn’t make any sense and it is hurting our military, hurting our country. This should not wait till September."

It Doesn't Seem To Matter

Think Progress » NYT poll: Opposition to war at all-time high.:
"“Americans now view the war in Iraq more negatively than at any time since the war began, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. Six in 10 Americans surveyed say the United States should have stayed out of Iraq, and more than three in four say that things are going badly there — including nearly half who say things are going very badly, the poll found.”"

BuzzFlash Says It Too

Capitulating to the Party of Surrender: The Dems Help Bush Pull Domestic Political Victory From the Jaws of Defeat |
"They claim that they don’t have the votes to override a veto. But they do have the votes to keep passing a bill that Bush will veto, effectively bringing the war in Iraq to a close because funding will run out."Like I've been saying...!

Why Bush hasn't been impeached

Excellent analysis. And like a failed marriage, we need a divorce from the Bush administration. It's up to the People to make a change and heal the nation.

read more | digg story

Why Are We Not Impeaching?!

But there's a deeper reason why the popular impeachment movement has never taken off -- and it has to do not with Bush but with the American people. Bush's warmongering spoke to something deep in our national psyche. The emotional force behind America's support for the Iraq war, the molten core of an angry, resentful patriotism, is still too hot for Congress, the media and even many Americans who oppose the war, to confront directly. It's a national myth. It's John Wayne. To impeach Bush would force us to directly confront our national core of violent self-righteousness -- come to terms with it, understand it and reject it. And we're not ready to do that.

The truth is that Bush's high crimes and misdemeanors, far from being too small, are too great. What has saved Bush is the fact that his lies were, literally, a matter of life and death. They were about war. And they were sanctified by 9/11. Bush tapped into a deep American strain of fearful, reflexive bellicosity, which Congress and the media went along with for a long time and which has remained largely unexamined to this day. Congress, the media and most of the American people have yet to turn decisively against Bush because to do so would be to turn against some part of themselves. This doesn't mean we support Bush, simply that at some dim, half-conscious level we're too confused -- not least by our own complicity -- to work up the cold, final anger we'd need to go through impeachment. We haven't done the necessary work to separate ourselves from our abusive spouse. We need therapy -- not to save this disastrous marriage, but to end it.
I've noticed that people just don't want to accept the end of this bizzarro "marriage" and take the next logical step. The notion that there isn't enough time or that we might as well wait it out is ridiculous. It may be the only way for America to heal itself and move on to bigger and better things. The whole world needs to see Bush, Cheney and the rest go down in flames and wind up, hopefully, behind bars. And the Democrats need to go for broke here, because they may not get another chance. Simply holding on and waiting it out is not going to cut it. They need to show that they are different, and like the ethics reforms and ending the war, they need to follow through. It's now or never.

Keith O. Gets Down

Crooks and Liars » Special Comment:
“The only things truly “compromised” are the trust of the voters…friends, and family, in Iraq”
: "You, the men and women elected with the simplest of directions-Stop The War-have traded your strength, your bargaining position, and the uniform support of those who elected you… for a handful of magic beans."

Gotta' love the guy! K.O. for president! Or at least Secretary of State!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Blog | Russell Shaw: If Bush Said 2+2 Equals Four, I Wouldn't Believe Him | The Huffington Post

The Blog | Russell Shaw: If Bush Said 2+2 Equals Four, I Wouldn't Believe Him | The Huffington Post:
Three questions:

1. Prior to our invasion of Iraq, weren't these same terrorists Bush is warning us about repressed by Saddam?

2. If we knew that Osama had been trying to stoke up terror back in 2005, why did this Administration minimize the importance of catching him at the time?

3. What does it say about how ungrounded you are if you still buy into this Administation's 'be very afraid' messages?

Whose Surge Is It?

In Baghdad, fighting their 'Alamo' - Los Angeles Times:
"U.S. troops in the Iraq security push face daunting foes: snipers and bombs. A captain fears it may be 'their surge, not ours.'"

Get Ready For The Other Shoe To Drop

The Raw Story | Two US aircraft carriers reach Gulf waters

Combine this with the extra buildup of ground forces in Iraq (twice the number of combat troops that we were told would be in the "surge") and the new homeland security directive that gives ALL governmental power to the president or vice president in the event of any calamity anywhere in the world that the president deems a sufficient threat to the U.S., and you're looking at the imminent end of democracy as we know it in the U.S.

Have a nice day.

Well This Sucks!

Democrats Find Ethics Overhaul Elusive in House - New York Times:
WASHINGTON, May 22 — House Democratic leaders pushing a promised lobbying overhaul are facing resistance from balky lawmakers and fending off accusations that a prominent member is flouting new ethics rules.

The Democratic leaders were forced to scrap a promise to double the current one-year lobbying ban after lawmakers leave office. Now, they are struggling to pass legislation requiring lobbyists to disclose the campaign contributions they “bundle” — collect and deliver — to lawmakers. Failing to deliver on both measures would endanger similar provisions already passed by the Senate.
What are we to think, Democrats? We elected you to stop the war, bring home the troops, impeach the administration, and drain the swamp that Washington politics has become. So far, you are batting .000. I supported you. I campaigned for you. I made calls for you. Come on and give us back some respect and do the right things, or you will not have a chance to establish a new and prosperous dynasty in the West. Didn't we teach you anything last November? Is there something in the D.C. water that rots the brain and enlarges the anus?

Oh, that reminds me, we want you to stop global warming and pollution of our vital fluids as well.

Dems Blink On Deadline

Democrats Pull Troop Deadline From Iraq Bill - New York Times

Disappointing if not unexpected. I don't see why they couldn't just keep sending a bill with withdrawal deadlines (binding ones, at that) and let Bush keep vetoing. Each time, they should get more votes in favor until they have enough to beat the veto.

This just gives the Reps and the so-called Moderates a window of opportunity to make political hay of the Dems "weakness." They should have stuck to their guns.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

One in every 32 U.S. adults behind bars, on probation or on parole in 2005

A record 7 million people -- or one in every 32 American adults -- were behind bars, on probation or on parole by the end of last year, according to the Justice Department.

read more | digg story

By Presidential Decree...

National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive:
The President shall lead the activities of the Federal Government for ensuring constitutional government.


The Secretary of Homeland Security shall serve as the President's lead agent for coordinating overall

continuity operations and activities of executive departments and agencies, and in such role shall perform the responsibilities set forth for the Secretary in sections 10 and 16 of this directive.


(10) Federal Government COOP, COG, and ECG plans and operations shall be appropriately integrated with the emergency plans and capabilities of State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as appropriate, in order to promote interoperability and to prevent redundancies and conflicting lines of authority. The Secretary of Homeland Security shall coordinate the integration of Federal continuity plans and operations with State, local, territorial, and tribal governments, and private sector owners and operators of critical infrastructure, as appropriate, in order to provide for the delivery of essential services during an emergency.


(16) The Secretary of Homeland Security shall:

(a) Coordinate the implementation, execution, and assessment of continuity operations and activities;

(b) Develop and promulgate Federal Continuity Directives in order to establish continuity planning requirements for executive departments and agencies....
Welcome to the end of democracy as we know it in the United States. When the next emergency comes (and do any of us think this bunch of incompetent cronies and co-conspirators can or would do anything to stop it?), something as quaint as "marshal law" may come to be seen as the good old days.


Number of Evangelical Law Schools Growing - TalkLeft: The Politics Of Crime

Escalation Continues In Iraq

Bush could double force by Christmas:
The little-noticed second surge, designed to reinforce U.S. troops in Iraq, is being executed by sending more combat brigades and extending tours of duty for troops already there.

The actions could boost the number of combat soldiers from 52,500 in early January to as many as 98,000 by the end of this year if the Pentagon overlaps arriving and departing combat brigades.

Separately, when additional support troops are included in this second troop increase, the total number of U.S. troops in Iraq could increase from 162,000 now to more than 200,000 -- a record-high number -- by the end of the year.
Just another detail they forgot to mention? Sure. And as the number of U.S. soldiers is increasing, the number of coalition forces is going down, and the violence is still going up.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Corporate Greed Knows No Bounds

Bilking the Elderly, With a Corporate Assist - New York Times:
"InfoUSA advertised lists of “Elderly Opportunity Seekers,” 3.3 million older people “looking for ways to make money,” and “Suffering Seniors,” 4.7 million people with cancer or Alzheimer’s disease. “Oldies but Goodies” contained 500,000 gamblers over 55 years old, for 8.5 cents apiece. One list said: “These people are gullible. They want to believe that their luck can change.”

Sick. Just sick. This is what we have to look forward to?

More Money Down The Drain

U.S. Pays Pakistan to Fight Terror, but Patrols Ebb - New York Times:
The administration, according to some current and former officials, is fearful of cutting off the cash or linking it to performance for fear of further destabilizing Pakistan’s president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, who is facing the biggest challenges to his rule since he took power in 1999.

The White House would not directly answer the question of why Pakistan is being paid the same very large amount after publicly declaring that it is significantly cutting back on its patrols in the most important border area. But Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for Stephen J. Hadley, the national security adviser, emphasized Pakistan’s strategic importance in the region.
Hey! I'll take a billion a year to sit on my ass! Honest! Trust me!

Do we need any more testaments to the utter catastrophe that is this administration? They let Bin Laden and his closest cohorts escape from Afghanistan, and now their outsourced cronies are ripping us off while giving safe harbor to those who were actually responsible for the attacks of 9/11. And the fools in the White House don't even have the courage to make the Pakistanis uphold their part of the deal. They're being played by both ends and don't seem to care enough to stop paying for it.

Well, what did we expect? A billion a year is only chump change compared to what we pay Black Water and Haliburton in a year, and they don't exactly deserve it either. How much longer are we going to let the profiteers steal our money and future? Impeach the bastards already!!!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Contractor Deaths in Iraq Soar to Record - New York Times

Contractor Deaths in Iraq Soar to Record - New York Times:
At least 146 contract workers were killed in Iraq in the first three months of the year, by far the highest number for any quarter since the war began in March 2003, according to the Labor Department, which processes death and injury claims for those working as United States government contractors in Iraq.

2007 is the bloodiest, deadliest year yet in the occupation of Iraq. Is this the kind of "progress" Bush says we're making in Iraq? Our being there only makes things worse. Even the Iraqi government voted to have us leave. Isn't it way past time to get out?

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Holy Cow!

WP: Scientists cast doubt on Kennedy bullet analysis - Highlights -

U.S. Becoming Empire?

None of the current candidates, nor Congress, are offering any remedy to the trend. Some are encouraging it.

Not impeaching the current administration now is tantamount to collusion. The press has failed to present the big picture, has even participated in the effort.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

And They Did

Clinton, Obama to Back Vote to Cut Off Funding for Troops in Iraq -

Of course, that wasn't enough to make it happen. Keep trying, and thank you.

Glenn Greenwald Sees Significance In Comey Testimony

Glenn Greenwald - Salon

Although the acting AG back in 2004 didn't come out and say it, both he and Ashcroft, who was hospitalized at the time, knew the surveillance program was illegal and refused to sign off on it until changes were made. That means that the President, the Vice President, and Gonzales, among others, knowingly broke the law and not just any law, the Fourth Amendment itself!

Now can we impeach them all? Please?!

Losing Two Wars In Afghanistan

Poppy Fields Are Now a Front Line in Afghanistan War - New York Times:
Poppy growing is endemic in the countryside, and Afghanistan now produces 92 percent of the world’s opium. But until recently, American officials acknowledge, fighting drugs was considered a distraction from fighting terrorists.

The State Department and Pentagon repeatedly clashed over drug policy, according to current and former officials who were interviewed. Pentagon leaders refused to bomb drug laboratories and often balked at helping other agencies and the Afghan government destroy poppy fields, disrupt opium shipments or capture major traffickers, the officials say.


Former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and military leaders also played down or dismissed growing signs that drug money was being funneled to the Taliban, the officials say.

And the C.I.A. and military turned a blind eye to drug-related activities by prominent warlords or political figures they had installed in power, Afghan and American officials say.

Not so long ago, Afghanistan was trumpeted as a success, a country freed from tyranny and Al Qaeda. But as the Taliban’s grip continues to tighten, threatening Afghanistan’s future and the fight against terrorism, Americans and Afghans are increasingly asking what went wrong. To that, some American officials say that failing to disrupt the drug trade was a critical strategic mistake.
So, you would think that the U.S. and Afghanistan officials would do something about all this. And you would be only somewhat correct.
But while new Afghan drug prosecutors are charging hundreds of messengers and truck drivers with drug offenses, major dealers, often with ties both to government officials and the Taliban, operate virtually at will.

An American counternarcotics official in Washington said a classified list late last year developed by several United States agencies identified more than 30 important Afghan drug suspects, including at least five government officials. But they are unlikely to be actively sought anytime soon, several American officials caution.

In part, that is because the Afghan drug prosecutors are eager, but their legal skills are weak. “You look at the indictments, and it looks like a sixth grader wrote it,” said Rob Lunnen, a Salt Lake City federal prosecutor assisting the Afghan drug task force.

Another American prosecutor said, “If we try to go after deputy ministerial or ministerial level corruption cases, then you are not going to have a system that can handle it, and they would just get released.”
You see, it's very difficult for a corrupt government to do much about corrupt government, and here we have two corrupt governments in a situation where they should do something about their corruption if they want to succeed in defeating their enemies. Unfortunately, their number two enemy is themselves.


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