Saturday, March 24, 2007

Bill Maher Gets It Right

[Hat tip to Firedoglake] This is the best description of the Traitorgate case I've heard to date. Kudos to Bill Maher and to FDL for bringing it to my attention. Wow! It should be submitted as evidence at the impeachment trial as a character reference for Bush!

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Thursday, March 22, 2007

Kicking The Foxes Out Of The Hen House

F.D.A. Limits Role of Advisers Tied to Industry - New York Times:
"WASHINGTON, March 21 — Expert advisers to the government who receive money from a drug or device maker would be barred for the first time from voting on whether to approve that company’s products under new rules announced Wednesday for the F.D.A.’s powerful advisory committees."

Finally a step in the right direction. This should be the normal way of things in the regulatory space, but is practically unique under the plutocratic regime that is BushCo.

That Domestic Policy Problem Thing

The Much-Needed Return of Pay-Go - New York Times:
The problem is that no politician wants to say what must be said: some taxes have to be raised, for the sake of the nation’s children, veterans and others who are paying too high a price for the White House’s spendthrift ways.
Pretty much sums it up, eh?

God Bless You, Mr. Anderson!

In Utah, an Opponent of the ‘Culture of Obedience’ - New York Times:
SALT LAKE CITY — Rocky Anderson may not be the most liberal mayor in America. But here in the most conservative state, he might as well be.

Just being himself is enough to galvanize, divide or enrage people who have followed his career as Salt Lake City’s mayor, and who are now watching him become, in the twilight of his final term, a national spokesman for the excoriation and impeachment of President Bush.

[“President Bush is a war criminal,” Mr. Anderson, a Democrat, said at a rally here on Monday marking the fourth anniversary of the war in Iraq. “Let impeachment be the first step toward national reconciliation — and toward penance for the outrages committed in our nation’s name.”]
Unbelievable! A politician tells the truth!? Keep on truckin', Rocky!

My Heart Goes Out To Them

Edwards to Continue ’08 Bid Despite Wife’s Cancer - New York Times

Best of luck to both of you. Keep up the good fight.

Rove In The Crosshairs

Senate Panel Backs Subpoenas of Bush Aides - New York Times:
WASHINGTON, March 22 — The Senate Judiciary Committee today authorized the issuing of subpoenas that would summon Karl Rove and several other top Bush administration officials to Capitol Hill to testify under oath about the dismissals of eight federal prosecutors.
Coming to a big-screen television near you: The Inquisition Of The Pope Of The White House.

Catch it if you can. It's time for some real accountability, and Gonzales and Rove are just for starters. Oh, yes! Impeachment is back on the table!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Froomkin Uses The "II" Word

Dan Froomkin - Why Prosecutors Shouldn't Act Like Partisans -
But in law-enforcement jobs -- such as the attorney general, the director of the FBI, and the country's 93 U.S. attorneys -- overtly partisan behavior is a more troubling problem. While the men and women in those positions serve at the pleasure of the president, it is also a critically important part of their job to remain independent.

That's because it's flatly un-American for the law to be used as a political weapon. It erodes public confidence in the justice system, and offends the American commitment to fairness. It's the sort of thing that, quite properly, can lead to impeachment.

Now that's what I'm talkin' about! Impeachment! Say it with me, now: I-M-P-E-A-C-H-M-E-N-T!!!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

FDL Pulls Down Toensing's Pants

Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » How To Betray America’s Spies

And exposes her for the party hack she is.

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Fitz Made The Original List Of "Underperforming" USA's

Fitzgerald Ranked During Leak Case -

U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald was ranked among prosecutors who had "not distinguished themselves" on a Justice Department chart sent to the White House in March 2005, when he was in the midst of leading the CIA leak investigation that resulted in the perjury conviction of a vice presidential aide, administration officials said yesterday.

Of course, Justice officials still deny that the firings had anything to do with politics.

The ranking placed Fitzgerald below "strong U.S. Attorneys . . . who exhibited loyalty" to the administration but above "weak U.S. Attorneys who . . . chafed against Administration initiatives, etc.," according to Justice documents.
I'm sure they're right. After all, Fitzgerald is such a slacker.
Fitzgerald has been widely recognized for his pursuit of criminal cases against al-Qaeda's terrorist network before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, and he drew up the official U.S. indictment against Osama bin Laden. He was named as special counsel in the CIA leak case in December 2003 after then-Attorney General John D. Ashcroft recused himself.

Fitzgerald also won the Attorney General's Award for Distinguished Service in 2002 under Ashcroft.

Justice spokeswoman Tasia Scolinos said yesterday that "Pat Fitzgerald has a distinguished record as one of the most experienced and well-respected prosecutors at the Justice Department. His track record speaks for itself."

See there, "speaks for itself."

But Fitzgerald also came under sharp criticism from many Republicans and press advocates for his aggressive pursuit of the Libby case.

TheMarch 2, 2005, memo from Sampson came in response to a proposal floated by Miers to remove all U.S. attorneys during Bush's second term. Fitzgerald was placed in a middle category among his peers: "No recommendation; have not distinguished themselves either positively ornegatively."

Although the ranking meant Sampson was not recommending those prosecutors for removal at the time, two U.S.attorneys who received the same ranking were fired last Dec. 7: Daniel G. Bogden of Nevada and Paul K. Charlton of Arizona. (emphasis mine)

Now the Bushies are trying to say that this low ranking was all the work of D. Kyle Sampson, Gonzales's aide, and had nothing to do with them. Still, if Sampson's lists were used to determine who was fired, then why wasn't Fitz fired as well? Could it be because he was a little too high-profile at the time? You can't have it both ways, can you? Oh, right, double-think, I forgot.

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The Sky Isn't Falling...Really

WASHINGTON, March 19 — A House committee released documents Monday that showed hundreds of instances in which a White House official who was previously an oil industry lobbyist edited government climate reports to play up uncertainty of a human role in global warming or play down evidence of such a role.

Material Shows Weakening of Climate Reports - New York Times

Sure sounds like a snow job to me.

He was hired by Exxon Mobil after resigning in 2005 following reports on the editing in The New York Times. The White House said his resignation was not related to the disclosures.

Mr. Cooney said his past work opposing restrictions on heat-trapping gases for the oil industry had had no bearing on his actions once he joined the White House. “When I came to the White House,” he testified, “my sole loyalties were to the president and his administration.”

Oh yeah, it's a snow job.

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I Have A Dream

Blair, Bush could face probe at The Hague - World -

And it includes seeing Bush and Cheney in bright orange jumpsuits.

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