Saturday, August 19, 2006

Weapons spending has doubled since 9/11/01

Well, do tell.

What you want to bet it is even more. They route defense spending through the Department of Energy, Education, and others. Almost all of that money goes toward R&D of weapons; the kind of weapons most decent people wouldn't want to even think about.

Daily Kos: State of the Nation:

WASHINGTON -- The estimated costs for the development of major weapons systems for the US military have doubled since September 11, 2001, with a trillion-dollar price tag for new planes, ships, and missiles that would have little direct role in the fight against insurgents in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The soaring cost estimates -- disclosed in a report for the Republican-led Senate Budget Committee -- have led to concerns that supporters of multibillion-dollar weapons programs in Congress, the Pentagon , and the defense industry are using the conflicts and the war on terrorism to fulfill a wish-list of defense expenditures, whether they are needed or not for the war on terrorism.

The report, based on Defense Department data, concluded that the best way to keep defense spending in check in the coming years lies in ``controlling the cost of weaponry,' especially those programs that the Pentagon might not necessarily need.

The projections of what it will cost to acquire 'major weapons programs' currently in production or on the drawing board soared from $790 billion in September 2001 to $1.61 trillion in June 2006, according to the congressional analysis of Pentagon data.

Why is the W.H. not foaming at the mouth, bout the "AP traitors"

Who leaked to the AP?

Why isn't Cheney, and every bird-brain at Fox, calling for their immediate execution as traitors?

Why isn't Gonzalses hauling these reporters into court, to demand that they reveal their sources?

Want to take an educated guess?

TPMmuckraker August 18, 2006 01:03 PM:

The Bush administration hates leaks, especially when they involve classified information. They and their allies have made that abundantly and forcefully clear (Plame affair aside). Attorney General Al Gonzales has mounted an investigation into a classified leak to the New York Times; the president and vice president have said the paper's publishing of classified information has been 'very damaging' and 'disgraceful.' One GOP lawmaker even charged the paper with treason.

That's why my antennae started buzzing when I read this paragraph from an Aug. 12 AP story about U.S. government efforts to trace possible domestic links to the recently-foiled London terror plot:

Two. . . U.S. counterterrorism officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the investigation, said the British suspects placed calls to several cities in the United States before their arrests. At least some of the calls were placed to people in New York, Washington, Chicago and Detroit, one official said. The suspects are all British citizens, mostly men in the 20s and 30s of Pakistani descent.

GOP Sees Strategic Advantage in Court Loss on Wiretapping - Los Angeles Times

The GOP and false choices:

We can have our constitution, in tact, preserved by a Judge (when Congress fails to do their damned jobs), or we can listen in on Al Qaeda phone calls and, therefore, prevent attacks on our homeland.

What about listening in on Al Qaeda with oversight? Is that such a novel idea?

Hell no, it isn't.

It's the law.

You can be secure or you can be free. So, what's your pleasure? There is no such thing as total security. There are more Americans killed on the highways and byways of this contry every year than are killed by terrorist in any given year.

Why don't we outlaw cars? (Especially the urban assault ego vehicles)

The fact is, there will always be terrorism. As long as man doesn't think twice about inflicting all manner of horror on his fellow man, there will be terror. It matters not if terror comes in the form of planes flown into buildings or shock and awe in Baghdad. Terror is terror.

We will never be entirely safe from someone who is pissed off to the point of being deranged. Terrorism did not begin in Munich, 1972 and it will not end now, or in the near future. (Can we spell Tim McVeigh?)

As a matter of fact, BushCo has made it even more likely than it was 6 years ago.

The Bush administration has been listening in on phone calls, reading emails and tracking money tranfers for almost 6 years, that someone who has never even thought about killing anyone, will snap and blow some of us to kingdom-come. That person may or may not be Arab/Muslim or homegrown crusading crackpot.

How many arrests have there been as a result of the illegal wiretapping? How much good has actually been done?

If Al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations are really the only targets of all ths scrutiny, why can't we have oversight?

GOP Sees Strategic Advantage in Court Loss on Wiretapping - Los Angeles Times:

WASHINGTON - This week's federal court ruling that declared the president's warrantless wiretapping program unconstitutional was a blow to the Bush administration and a victory for its critics. But in a reversal, it is Republicans who are highlighting the decision and Democrats who are sidestepping it.

A day after a Detroit judge said the president 'blatantly disregarded' the Constitution when he authorized the domestic surveillance program, top Republicans issued a stream of memos discussing her ruling and released a new Web ad accusing Democrats of being against terrorist surveillance.

Neocon Dreams, American Nightmares

These people are seriously demented.

Bombing people, in their homeland is not a way to make friends.

Kristol, King of the NeoCons Loons, believes that bombing Iran to smitherins will cause Iranians to hate their government and love the people bombing them.

What the hell is wrong with people who think like this?

I can't help but wonder what all these egg-heads would do, if it was America that was being bombed, so that maybe we would decide we didn't want our current regime (as if most of us haven't already decided that). Would they fight back, anyway they could. Do they even know how to fight?

Neocon Dreams, American Nightmares:

Taking what might be considered the moderate neocon position on the Israel/Hezbollah war, the editors of The New Republic demand that the Bush Administration 'move ruthlessly to prevent Iran from acquiring the deadliest arsenal of all,' while their contributor Michael Oren calls only for an Israeli, rather than an American, attack on Syria. Next door at The Weekly Standard, William Kristol sees no point in playing coy. Having already called for an American attack on Syria twenty months ago, he is now beating his bongo for an immediate 'military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities.' Concerned about retaliation against American citizens in the form of terrorist attacks around the world? Don't worry. Any and all 'repercussions,' he promises, 'would be healthy ones.' Kristol even imagines that such an attack could cause the Iranian people 'to reconsider whether they really want to have this regime in power,' as if the natural reaction of people who see their country attacked, their families killed and their property destroyed is to side with the people who are bombing them (just like in, um... Iraq).

White Heat (Immigratioon is turning up the heat in unliely places)

Yes, it is no doubt going to get ugly, espeially when the anti-immigration sentiment is combined with all of the other fear and anger in this country.

All hell could be ready to break loose over here, at any time

White Heat:

Harmon sees the same mindless conformity taking hold in America. 'We've let George W. Bush do more damage than Bill Clinton and every President before him could have even thought about doing. It's all about corporations. They run this country, and they run this world. That's not a world I want to live in. But everybody just behaves like sheep.' Including those who've supported the war in Iraq. 'How many kids did we have killed over there today for no good reason?' she asks. 'Two? Ten? Twenty? Get. Them. Out. Of. There.' It all fits together for Harmon: opposing Bush, opposing corporatism and opposing immigration. 'This whole influx happened because big business wants cheap labor,' she says. 'Just like that war is making corporations a lot of money. And Bush is doing all he can to help them.'

As the temperature over immigration keeps rising, Harmon says she worries about the level of frustration she's hearing, more and more, from other nativists in Tennessee and around the country. 'The most popular formula is, 'soap box, ballot box, ammo box.' They'll X out the first two, like those options are gone and all you can do is arm yourself and get ready. I'm looking at that going, phew! It's going to get ugly.'

CorpWatch: Intelligence in Iraq: L-3 Supplies Spy Support

Do any laws, anywhere apply to these people?

CorpWatch�:�Intelligence in Iraq: L-3 Supplies Spy Support:

The official headquarters for a 300-person intelligence support operation in Iraq is discreetly located in a two-story red building in a business park in Chantilly, Virginia, just outside the border fence of Washington, DC's Dulles airport. From its nondescript corporate offices, Government Services Incorporated (GSI) supplies staff for an operation that spreads over 22 military bases in the Middle East.

Walk through the entrance and to the left of the reception desk, next to a glass case showcasing electronic surveillance gear, is an announcement congratulating employees on winning a $426.5 million intelligence contract from the Pentagon last year.

GSI is a major subsidiary of L-3 Communications, a Fortune 500 company. Retired Lieutenant General Paul Cerjan took GSI's helm in May, after spending a year running Halliburton 's multi-billion dollar military logistics contract in Iraq and around the world.

Israeli soldier killed in Lebanon raid

NeCon dream not dead yet.

This mess in Lebanon may be far from over.

Israeli soldier killed in Lebanon raid - Yahoo! News:

BEIRUT, Lebanon - Hezbollah fighters battled Israeli commandos who landed near the militants' stronghold deep inside Lebanon early Saturday, killing one soldier, in the first apparent large-scale violation of the U.N.-brokered cease-fire between the sides.

Hezbollah said its guerrillas foiled the raid after a gunbattle, and the Israeli army said one soldier was killed and two were wounded, one seriously.

Witnesses said Israeli missiles destroyed a bridge during the raid, and Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora called the military action a 'flagrant violation' of the cease-fire, which took effect Monday following 34 days of fighting.

The Israeli army said the special forces operation aimed 'to prevent and interfere with terror activity against Israel, especially the smuggling of arms from Iran and Syria to Hezbollah.' It said the commando team completed its mission.

Bush Contemplates Rebirth of Dictatorship for Iraq | The Progressive

This was predictable and not at all surprising.

Bush Contemplates Rebirth of Dictatorship for Iraq The Progressive:

There was a big clue planted at the bottom of the very long lead article in The New York Times of August 17.

That story noted the alarming rise in insurgent attacks against American and Iraqi forces.

The number of IEDs in July was 2,625, just about twice what it was back in January, when Zarqawi was still prowling around.

Clearly, his death did nothing to slow the pace down or snuff out the insurgency.

The shelf life of Bush propaganda is only about one week these days.

Maybe Chalabi is waiting in the wings still, or some other Saddam wannabe.

Bush appears to be taking applications. But back to the clue.

Did you know there's a catastrophic drought occuring right here in the US?

This is only going to get worse....... along with killer storms, forest fires and other horrors.

Daily Kos: Did you know there's a catastrophic drought occuring right here in the US?:

If not, you're not alone.

In fact, we knew there were 'concerns,' pockets of dry conditions here and there, but really had no clue how bad and widespread until recently. See, we (myself, spouse and four children, ages 4-9) have been traveling via RV for throughout the US for ten of the past 15 months (the last four for Draft Gore 2008 PAC), starting in Maine last June, and have visited most states east of the Mississippi, and, more recently, a half dozen on the west side. We're currently holed up in the Black Hills of western South Dakota, having traversed the state from East to West earlier this week. Earlier this month, we spent time in Wisconsin, the U.P. of Michigan and Minnesota, and the entire month of July in Iowa.

Bush blasts court ruling on surveillance - Yahoo! News

So, Crap-for-brains diagrees with a Federal District Judge. Who the hell does he think he is, a C-student?

Bush blasts court ruling on surveillance - Yahoo! News: "

CAMP DAVID, Md. - President Bush on Friday criticized a federal court ruling that said his warrantless wiretapping program is unconstitutional, declaring that opponents 'do not understand the nature of the world in which we live.'

'I strongly disagree with that decision, strongly disagree,' Bush said, striking his finger on a podium to underscore his point. 'That's why I instructed the Justice Department to appeal immediately, and I believe our appeals will be upheld.'

U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor in Detroit on Thursday was the first to find the National Security Agency surveillance program unconstitutional. The program involves monitoring international phone calls and e-mails to and from the United States involving people with suspected ties to terrorists.

'If al-Qaida is calling in to the United States, we want to know why they're calling,' Bush said.

W.H. Declares; Bush is not full of "Crap."

Don't we all feel better now?

BBC NEWS Politics US brushes off 'crap' accusation:

John Prescott's alleged remark that President Bush was 'crap' on peace in the Middle East has been dismissed by Tony Snow, a White House spokesman.

'The president has been called a lot worse and I suspect will be,' he said. (This maybe the only truth that's come from the W.H. podium in a very long time.)

The deputy prime minister insists the reports of his comments in a private meeting with MPs are inaccurate.
But prominent Labour figures such as Ken Livingstone and Glenda Jackson have backed him regardless, with both saying American policies are a 'disaster'.

Mr Snow gave a pointed response to reporters when questioned on the matter, saying: 'The president talks regularly with Prime Minister Blair, who is the prime minister.

Radioactive Leak Reaches Nuclear Plant's Groundwater - Los Angeles Times

See? Isn't life scary enough without BushCo?

Radioactive Leak Reaches Nuclear Plant's Groundwater - Los Angeles Times:

Radioactive, cancer-causing tritium has leaked into the groundwater beneath the San Onofre nuclear power plant, prompting the closure of one drinking-water well in southern Orange County, authorities said.

Officials have not found evidence that the leak from the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, California's largest, has contaminated the drinking water supply.

Friday, August 18, 2006

That Bush Feller is a Post Turtle

This is one of the funniest things I have read in awhile.

That Bush Feller is a Post Turtle BuzzFlash:

Here is a true story sent to me by a Texas friend who knows this doctor in a little town:

While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75-year-old Texas rancher, whose hand was caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually, the topic got around to former Texas Governor George W. Bush and his elevation to the White House. The old Texan said, 'Well, ya know, that Bush feller is a 'post turtle'.

Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a 'post turtle was. The old rancher said, 'When you're driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a post turtle.'

The old man saw a puzzled look on the doctor's face, so he continued to explain, 'You know he didn't get there by himself, he doesn't belong there, he doesn't know what to do while he's up there, and you just want to help the dumb shit get down.'

A Split In the Racist Right

What a freakin' dilemma!

It really must be a hellish psychological conflict: Who to hate.

AlterNet: A Split In the Racist Right:

A rift has opened between those who see blacks, Hispanics and Muslims as the primary enemy, and those who blame Jews for every evil.

Review of Landmark Study Finds Fewer Vietnam Veterans With Post-Traumatic Stress - New York Times

Can't help but wonder how many Vietnam Vets, who did suffer from PTSD, are now dead and cannot be interviewed.

Quite a few Vets never darkened the door of the VA, as they wanted nothing more to do with anything having to do with government.

Others left the country, never to return.

Because PTSD was not recognized as a disorder until long after the war ended, how many suicided and/or drank themelves to death, years ago.

There are a number of reasons to not trust this study, entirely.

Review of Landmark Study Finds Fewer Vietnam Veterans With Post-Traumatic Stress - New York Times:

Far fewer Vietnam veterans suffered from post-traumatic stress as a result of their wartime service than previously thought, researchers are reporting today, in a finding that could have lasting consequences for the understanding of combat stress, as well as for the estimates of the mental health fallout from the Iraq war.

Retired US generals, diplomats criticize Bush Middle East policy

Bush only pretends to listen to Generals and such. Actually, he doesn't give a flying rat's ass what anyone says, except Unka Dick, whom he cofuses with God.

Print Story: Retired US generals, diplomats criticize Bush Middle East policy on Yahoo! News:

A group of former diplomats and retired generals called on President George W. Bush to open negotiations with Iran, warning that the use of military force would have catastrophic consequences for the region.

The open letter signed by 21 former senior officials comes amid growing criticism of US refusal to deal directly with Iran and Syria despite crises in Iraq and Lebanon.

'As former military leaders and foreign policy officials, we call on the Bush administration to engage immediately in direct talks with the government of Iran without preconditions to help resolve the current crisis in the Middle East and settle differences over the Iranian nuclear program,' the letter said.

'We strongly caution against any consideration of the use of military force against Iran. The current crises must be resolved through diplomacy, not military action,' it said.

It warned that an attack on Iran would have disastrous consequences for the region and for US forces in Iraq, further inflaming Muslim hatred and violence.

Among the signers were retired general Joseph Hoar, a former commander of US forces in the Middle East, and Morton Halperin, a former State Department director of policy planning.

Halperin accused the Bush administration of stifling debate on Middle East policy 'by accusing anybody that disagrees with it of being disloyal or somehow helping the terrorists.'

Attacks Aimed At GIs In Iraq On Rise

...and it is about to get worse....much worse.

Attacks Aimed At GIs In Iraq On Rise, U.S. Confirms Sharp Increase In Bombings; Car Bombs Kill 10 In Baghdad - CBS News:

U.S. Confirms Sharp Increase In Bombings; Car Bombs Kill 10 In Baghdad"

An expensive no-decision

We simply must get the big money out of politics, period!

WorkingForChange-An expensive no-decision:

WASHINGTON -- We are so accustomed to arguing about the decisions politicians make that we often forget about the importance of non-decisions.

'Non-decision making' is a wonderful concept introduced many years ago by the political scientists Peter Bachrach and Morton Baratz, who spoke of how demands for change 'can be suffocated before they are even voiced.'

Americans are on the verge of making a non-decision about how we pay for presidential campaigns. If Congress does nothing, a system that succeeded in limiting the impact of special interest money on elections for our highest office will collapse.

Opponents of campaign finance reform love to claim that the money-in-politics problem is insoluble. But the public financing of presidential campaigns, instituted in response to the Watergate scandals of the early 1970s, was that rare reform that accomplished exactly what it

Edwards says his vote on Iraq was wrong

I don't believe it was wrong to give a president the backing he needed to get the U.N. inspectors into Iraq and hold Saddam accountable.

What was a mistake, was giving THIS president permission to do anything, because he cannot be trusted.

Edwards says his vote on Iraq was wrong - Yahoo! News:

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Former Sen. John Edwards said Thursday he made a mistake in 2002 when he voted to authorize President Bush to attack Iraq.

Chinese envoy tells U.S. to 'shut up'

Condi gets uninvited too Lebanon, Bush runs from protesters, as the Brittish second in command calls hinm, "crap," and China tells the U.S. to shut up.

Does anyone else see a pattern emerging?

Chinese envoy tells U.S. to 'shut up' - Yahoo! News:

LONDON - The United States should 'shut up' with its
concerns about China's growing military spending because the increase is no threat, a Chinese ambassador said Thursday.

Reaping and Sowing

It's high time for some reaping!

Reaping and Sowing:

The political ideology (or 'movement,' as they laughingly call it) that has been labeled 'conservative' for the last 30 years or so was built largely on lies and deceit, and that is why it's going down, and going down hard.

That sounds like a strong statement, but it's not. And if you doubt the assertion, think hard. The last truly honest conservative was Barry Goldwater, and he was soundly trounced by Lyndon Johnson, a true conservative who saw the writing on the wall and adopted the inevitability of civil rights for blacks, and the need for the government to do something about the rampant poverty that continued to thrive in pockets all over the country, and was thereby labeled 'liberal.'

The Goldwater defeat motivated the far right to attempt a different strategy; one in which they held the same beliefs as before, but couched them in more 'acceptable' language, so as to hide their true intent. In addition, they also adopted very subtle, but very strong racist overtones that definitely had to be hidden behind 'code words.' Richard Nixon's 'Southern Strategy' was a blatant attempt to exploit the racist feelings of those who objected to the federal government's actions on behalf of blacks, in order to ensure their civil rights, and to prevent discrimination. The 'Southern Strategy' (a phrase coined by Nixon strategist Kevin Phillips) used the code word 'states' rights' to secure the Southern states as a stronghold for the Republican Party. The entire 'Southern Strategy' was basically dishonest, because it was a wink and a smile to Southern racist elements, in language that couched its true intent, as such intent would never have been found acceptable to most reasonable people.

ATF Strikes Bush's Words

Thank God, If we somehow manage to survive this nightmare, called the Bush administration, I do not ever wish to be reminded of it again.

ATF Strikes Bush's Words:

The letter said Bush's words -- 'We will not tire, we will not falter, and we will not fail' -- 'remind us daily of the dedication and commitment with which we at ATF pursue our missions' of fighting terrorists and criminals.

But then Truscott left the agency, and deputy director Edgar A. Domenech , a career employee, became acting director. Although the idea of putting Bush's words on the entry originally came from the construction team and was approved up the ladder at ATF, GSA and apparently the White House, Domenech a week or so ago ordered that the project be dropped.

Was this politically related? Not at all, we were told yesterday. It was 'strictly a cost-savings measure,' ATF spokeswoman Sheree L. Mixell said. 'The removal of the cornerstone engraving is one of many cost-cutting measures we have made,' she said. 'These decisions are made daily,' she added, as officials try to trim costs by 'reevaluating noncritical items.' - Wiretap ruling affirms that presidents aren't monarchs

Unfortunately, Diggs-Taylor doesn't have the last word, even though her words were stright up right.

This will go all the way to the Scalitos, of Unitary Executive fame. - Wiretap ruling affirms that presidents aren't monarchs:

For the past five years, the Bush administration has operated as if the horrific events of 9/11 not only changed fundamental aspects of national security and public safety, but also changed the very nature of government.

GAO report stings Bush's faith-based initiative

They are probably ripping us off 40 ways from Sunday.

WorkingForChange-GAO report stings Bush's faith-based initiative:

The GAO study entitled 'Faith-Based and Community Initiative: Improvements in Monitoring Grantees and Measuring Performance Could Enhance Accountability' found that 'While officials in all 26 FBOs [faith-based organizations receiving federal grants] that we visited said that they understood that federal funds cannot be used for inherently religious activities, a few FBOs described activities that appeared to violate this safeguard. Four of the 13 FBOs that provided voluntary religious activities did not separate in time or location some religious activities from federally funded program services.'

The report also noted that '[L]ittle information is available to assess progress toward another long-term goal of improving participant outcomes because outcome-based evaluations for many pilot programs have not begun.'
Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., who along with Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., requested the report, said 'The Bush administration has failed to develop standards to verify that faith-based organizations aren't using federal funds to pay for inherently religious activity or to provide services on the basis of religion.'

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Boguswar on three fronts.

I am sure that Jesus would be so proud! (Snark)

Disinformation :: The gateway to the underground - news, politics, conspiracy and weirdness.:

'Five years after September 11, it is possible to take stock of what parts of the battle against terrorism are succeeding and failing, and why. The thwarting of an elaborate terrorist plot against trans-Atlantic flights last week prevented what some maintain could have been a second September 11-style attack. Regardless of what the would-be perpetrators were actually capable of, credit goes to the intelligence, law enforcement and transportation security agencies that uncovered the plan, caught the culprits, and protected the public.
'The rest of the picture is bleaker. The announcement that more than 3,400 Iraqi civilians died in unrest in the month of July is a shocking reminder that the world's most powerful military has, let's face it, failed in its chief aim of stabilizing Iraq. The Israel Defense Forces' inability to vanquish Hezbollah in a month-long fight further shows that when in on-the-ground combat, terrorist groups can stand up to the world's most advanced armies.' - Opium hits record in Afghanistan - Aug 16, 2006 - Opium hits record in Afghanistan - Aug 16, 2006:

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Opium cultivation in Afghanistan has hit record levels -- up by more than 40 percent from 2005 -- despite hundreds of millions in counternarcotics money, Western officials told The Associated Press.
The increase could have serious repercussions for an already grave security situation, with drug lords joining the Taliban-led fight against Afghan and international forces.
A Western anti-narcotics official in Kabul said about 150,000 hectares (370,650 acres) of opium poppy was cultivated this growing season -- up from 104,000 hectares (257,000 acres) in 2005 -- citing their preliminary crop projections. The previous highest recorded figure was 131,000 hectares (323,700 acres) in 2004, according to the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime.

'It is a significant increase from last year ... unfortunately, it is a record year,' said a senior U.S. government official based in Kabul, who like the other Western officials would speak only on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive topic.

Final figures, and an estimate of the yield of opium resin from the poppies, will be clear only when the U.N. agency completes its assessment of the crop, based on satellite imagery and ground surveys. Its report is due in September.
The United Nations reported last year that Afghanistan produced an estimated 4,500 tons of opium -- enough to make 450 tons of heroin -- nearly 90 percent of world supply.

For the GOP, a Heartland Plunge

WTF do you expect?

Americans are busy, not stupid, in the majority.

Bush, Cheney, Rummy and Rice, not to mention the NeoCon egg-heads, who are always slithering about, are about to get Nuremburged!

Election stealing will be right behind that, in issues of importance, if we have anything to say about it, at all.

For the GOP, a Heartland Plunge:

"COLUMBUS, Ohio -- When the Columbus Dispatch's respected poll recently reported that Republican Secretary of State Ken Blackwell was trailing Democratic Rep. Ted Strickland by 20 points in the race for governor of Ohio, there was dismay but no shock among his fellow Republicans. Those I interviewed during a recent visit here said they had seen it coming for a long time.

But it is a political earthquake. Democrats have not been able to win a single statewide office in Ohio for most of the past decade -- and are completely shut out of power in the capitol at this moment. Strickland has never run a statewide campaign and is trying to become the first person since Rutherford B. Hayes to go from Congress to Ohio's governorship. Blackwell has won election in Ohio and led the successful campaign that gave George Bush this state -- and the presidency -- over John Kerry in 2004.

(Bull-shit! Do you ever read anything that doesn't fit with you world view?)

NRSC Takes Lieberman

Does anybody not see what's happening here?

The New York Observer Politicker: NRSC Takes Lieberman:

It's no coincidence that a purposeful silence has replaced the well-publicized calls from Republicans last month for no-hope GOP Senate candidate Alan Schlesinger to make way for someone more credible.

The state and national party, it seems, have concluded that they can't succeed in Connecticut this year under any circumstance, and would rather see Joe Lieberman win -- which polls show he's likely to do, absent a credible Republican candidate -- than risk handing the election to Democrat Ned Lamont.

This morning, a source at the National Republican Senatorial Committee confirmed in a phone interview that the party will not help Schlesinger or any other potential Republican candidate in Connecticut, and it now favors a Lieberman victory in November.

'We did a poll and there is no way any Republican we put out there can win, so we are just going to leave that one alone,' said the NRSC source.

Instead, the NRSC is pulling for Lieberman over Ned Lamont, who rode an anti-war message to a victory in the Aug 8 primary.

Most Republicans would agree that he'd clearly be a better choice than Lamont,' said the source.
--Jason Horowitz

Why I Don't Live In Israel

This is the kind of article we love.

It is personal and, therefore, lends itself to lived history, from which wisdom, eventually, emerges, unless your government kills you first.

AlterNet: Why I Don't Live In Israel:

This war is not different from the others. It's just the same. It reminds us of the wars that preceded it. I was born into the Yom Kippur War and lived through two other 'official wars': the first Lebanon war, the first Gulf war. I remember as a kid: lists of soldiers killed in battle read on the radio after the hourly news; knowing the next name could be one of my friends' brothers or fathers. I remember as a teenager: sirens, gas masks, and fireworks shows of patriot missiles chasing Scuds in the sky. I remember as a mom: driving in the farthest possible lane from a city bus, just in case it was the one carrying the suicide bomber that day.
Wars are all the same and this one is no different. For Israelis, they all go back to 'that' war. That war that turned my great-grandparents into smoke, that horrible, monstrous act of genocide that keeps creeping up on us.

Jews were not a party in World War II. They were victims -- they had no army and no choice. But Israel does have an army and a choice. Israel is choosing to endanger its citizens and soldiers, to ruin once again the lives of many civilians in Lebanon, in order to prove its strength and to keep 'that' from happening again.

This is What Democracy Looks Like?

There is no more USA. Now, it is some twisted image of itself: Empty, spiritless and, quite frankly, damned, if her people do not rise up for decency and real American principles.

This is What Democracy Looks Like?:

Celebrity is no substitute for an honest and vigorous debate on a matter as fundamentally important as war.

That is what antiwar Senate candidate, Jonathan Tasini, told New York Times columnist Bob Herbert last May in describing his rationale for making a Democratic Party primary run against incumbent-Goliath, Sen. Hillary Clinton.

Tasini has since qualified for the ballot with 40,000 signatures, far surpassing the required 15,000, and he is polling at a surprising 13 percent (or, perhaps not so surprising, if one considers the outrage over Iraq.) But, despite Tasini's strong run, the voters of New York might not get that vigorous debate after all.

Cable news station, NY1, owned by Time-Warner, declared that Tasini canno participate in its televised debate series because he hasn't raised the arbitrarily required $500,000. Tasini nearly triples the 5 percent polling requirement but he doesn't have the cash flow NY1 is looking for to legitimize his candidacy.

Now there's democracy in action for you: only the wealthy or those who raise enough money are welcome in this contest of ideas, no matter how critical the moment in our nation's history and no matter how many voters pledge their support.

As the New York Post (whose owner Rupert Murdoch held a July fundraiser for Senator Clinton) points out, 'Traditionally, the test of seriousness in a statewide candidate in New York is successful completion of the grueling ballot-access process. It ain't easy, to put it mildly - but Tasini has made that grade.'

The Post editorial goes on to argue that '70 percent of New York Democrats consider Iraq to be a major Election Day issue.' Don't the citizens of New York deserve to hear a range of views now that so many have expressed support for Tasini's candidacy?

Hizbullah Has Achieved What Arab States Only Dreamed of

I don't pretend to be a middle east expert, but it seems like Israel and the U.S. are losing bigtime.

Hizbullah Has Achieved What Arab States Only Dreamed of:

The sixth Arab-Israeli war, as some have called it, has ended in the first real setback for Israel's deterrent power

by David Hirst

There was nothing new about the broad objective behind Israel's war on Lebanon: through the destruction of Hizbullah it was to wreak fundamental change in a strategic, political and military environment that it had come to regard as menacing to its future. Nothing new about its methods either: the use of massive violence not merely against its military adversary but against the civilians and the infrastructure of the country in which it operates. Or about its official justification: seizing upon one single act of 'terrorist' violence from the other side as the opportunity to strike at the whole 'terrorist' organisation that was responsible for it. Or about the international support, even outright collaboration, it enjoyed, although in the case of the US and Britain this support was unprecedented in its partisan degree and in the perception of the vast dimensions, nature and menace of the 'enemy' against which Israel was waging war. For Condoleezza Rice the 'root causes' of the Lebanese crisis lay not on the Israeli side but in the wider Arab and Muslim world: Hizbullah was but the cutting edge of 'global terror', of the Islamic fanaticism that nurtured it, and of those states, Iran and Syria, that succour these forces for their own purposes, whether inspired by ideology or realpolitik.

Top Chinese Diplomat Tells US to 'Shut up' on Arms Spending

In all of my cold-war years, I have never heard a U.S. administration so back-handed.

This should tell us something, don't you think?

Top Chinese Diplomat Tells US to 'Shut up' on Arms Spending:

China's ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, throwing diplomatic language to the wind, has told the United States in no uncertain terms to 'shut up and keep quiet' on the subject of Beijing's growing military spending.

Top Chinese Diplomat Tells US to 'Shut up' on Arms Spending

In all of my cold-war years, I have never heard a U.S. administration so back-handed.

This should tell us something, don't you think?

Top Chinese Diplomat Tells US to 'Shut up' on Arms Spending:

China's ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, throwing diplomatic language to the wind, has told the United States in no uncertain terms to 'shut up and keep quiet' on the subject of Beijing's growing military spending.

US Suffers World's First Climate Change Exodus: Study


US Suffers World's First Climate Change Exodus: Study:

The first mass exodus of people fleeing the disastrous effects of climate change is not happening in low-lying Pacific islands but in the world's richest country, a US study said.
'The first massive movement of climate refugees has been that of people away from the Gulf Coast of the United States,' said the Earth Policy Institute, which has warned for years that climate change demands action now.

This 29 August, 2005 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) satellite image shows Hurricane Katrina as it makes landfall. The first mass exodus of people fleeing the disastrous effects of climate change is not happening in low-lying Pacific islands but in the world's richest country, a US study said.(AFP/NOAA-HO/File)

Institute president Lester Brown said that about a quarter of a million people who fled the devastating impact of Hurricane Katrina a year ago must now be classed as 'refugees'.

Interestingly, the country to suffer the most damage from a hurricane is also primarily responsible for global warming,' he said.

The United States is the world's largest consumer of energy, but has refused to sign up to the Kyoto pact aimed at reducing emissions of gases that scientists say are to blame for heating up the Earth.

Many environmentalists had expected the first big population shift to come somewhere like the Tuamotu islands in French Polynesia, the world's largest chain of atolls which rise barely metres (feet) from the Pacific.
Rising sea levels are part of the problem afflicting low-lying places but, experts argue, so are tropical storms that are mounting in ferocity because of warmer ocean temperatures.

Judge nixes warrantless surveillance

The Supremes already made Bush president; will they, now, make him a king?

Judge nixes warrantless surveillance - Yahoo! News:

U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor in Detroit became the first judge to strike down the National Security Agency's program, which she says violates the rights to free speech and privacy as well as the separation of powers enshrined in the Constitution.

'Plaintiffs have prevailed, and the public interest is clear, in this matter. It is the upholding of our Constitution,' Taylor wrote in her 43-page opinion.

The Justice Department appealed the ruling and issued a statement calling the program 'an essential tool for the intelligence community in the war on terror.'

White House press secretary Tony Snow said the Bush administration 'couldn't disagree more with this ruling.'
'United States intelligence officials have confirmed that the program has helped stop terrorist attacks and saved American lives,' he said. 'The program is carefully administered and only targets international phone calls coming into or out of the United States where one of the parties on the call is a suspected al-Qaida or affiliated terrorist.'

The ruling won't take immediate effect so Taylor can hear a Justice request for a stay pending its appeal. A hearing on the motion was set for Sept. 7, Snow said.

John Bolton and Judy Miller Breakfast at the Waldorf... As His Confirmation Battle Looms

Fillibuster Bolton!

The Blog Arianna Huffington: John Bolton and Judy Miller Breakfast at the Waldorf... As His Confirmation Battle Looms The Huffington Post

Cunningham's Wife Tells All...

...and it ain't pretty

TPMmuckraker August 17, 2006 10:05 AM:

It's not a pretty picture: the night before Duke Cunningham was sentenced and taken into custody, he dumped a duffel bag filled with dirty underwear and $32,000 in $20 and $100 bills in his wife's driveway as a desperate attempt to salvage some of his ill-gotten gains.

That's according to Nancy Cunningham, Duke's estranged wife, who granted an exclusive interview to Kitty Kelley, queen of Washington dirt. Kelley's article will be out in this week's issue of The New Republic, but we got a sneak peek. The piece will be posted online later today.

Mrs. Cunningham (who says she promptly turned that bag of cash over to her attorney) also reveals that Duke -- whom she coldly refers to as 'Mr. Cunningham' -- once slept with a knife and then a loaded gun under his pillow; that he frequently threw temper tantrums and once physically threatened Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) because he was passed over for a leadership position; that he planned to strike it big as a lobbyist after he left Congress; and that she called him 'Mr. Fun Ball' because of his aggressive flirtation with women.

Bush told to stop unconstitutional wire-taps

Of course, Junior don't need no judge telling him what to do. (More later)

Latest News The Huffington Post#a027468:

A federal judge ruled Thursday that the government's warrantless wiretapping program is unconstitutional and ordered an immediate halt to it.

U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor in Detroit became the first judge to strike down the National Security Agency's program, which she says violates the rights to free speech and privacy.

Ohio Voting Problems Deemed Severe

Why the hell can't something be done about this?

Perhaps, if a state cannot get it together to have an election that people in that state can trust as representing the will of all people who exercise their right to vote, should not be represented in D.C. at all.

Or, perhaps, the people of that state should refuse to pay taxes as they have no way of knowing if they're being represented, even with their vote?

Right now, the-powers-that-be, have no reason to change what seems to be working for them.

I say, we need to give them a reason!!!!!!

Ohio Voting Problems Deemed Severe:

CLEVELAND -- Problems with elections in Ohio's most populous county are so severe that it's unlikely they can be completely fixed by November, or even by the 2008 presidential election, a report commissioned by Cuyahoga County and released Tuesday says.

A nonprofit group hired to review the county's first election with new electronic voting machines found several problems with the May 2 primary, the results of which were delayed six days because roughly 18,000 absentee ballots had to be hand counted.

No freedom on July 4th

We can only imagine how much less freedom there will be by the next 'Independence Day.'

No freedom on July 4th:

Being as it was just the sort of thing agents of King George might have done to help provoke the American Revolution, it was fitting that it happened on the Fourth of July.
But it wasn't agents of King George III who ordered Jeff and Nicole Rank to be shackled and led off to jail for showing public disrespect to their sovereign.

It was agents of President George W.

The Ranks aren't radical sorts.

Jeff, 31, grew up a 'Navy brat,' born in Virginia and schooled K-12 in the Flour Bluff section of Corpus Christi that houses the Naval Air Station. He served as the marine extension agent for Matagorda County, and voted mainly Republican.
Nicole, 32, worked for FEMA as an environmental compliance officer, making sure that reconstruction projects in the wake of disasters complied with federal regulations.

NeoCons' last chance....

We can only hope this is the last chance and that the NeoCons are done.

But, these people never seem to go away. :: Northwest Arkansas' News Source:

In politics, it's crucial not to be overwhelmed by irony.

Nobody knows what will happen in the Middle East. But if the U. S. and France, working through the U. N. Security Council, have succeeded in negotiating a lasting cease-fire between Hezbollah and Israel, the temptation will be to make jokes. How long ago was it that a (pardon my French ) rapprochement with France would have been deemed suspect by all hairy-chested, God-fearing Americans ? Diplomacy may fail. Powerful forces inside the Bush administration are trying to circumvent it. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, like her predecessor Colin Powell, is ridiculed as an incompetent weakling by the same geniuses who predicted a 'cakewalk' in Iraq. True, Rice may not be the second coming of George Marshall, but they liked her fine when she was emitting warlike noises and 'end times' gibberish.

The stakes are higher than many Americans understand. Should the ceasefire hold, French diplomats and U. N. bureaucrats will have rescued Israel and Hezbollah from a conflict both appear to have blundered into, saving countless civilian lives. A brokered peace also would confound neo-conservative zealots eager to start what Newt Gingrich excitedly calls World War III to 'defend civilization.' As such, a cease-fire could mark the beginning of the end of a period of temporary insanity in American life. Or not.

Administration's odd calm, as middle east flared up.

Yeah, we noticed that.

The New Yorker: Fact:

In the days after Hezbollah crossed from Lebanon into Israel, on July 12th, to kidnap two soldiers, triggering an Israeli air attack on Lebanon and a full-scale war, the Bush Administration seemed strangely passive. 'It's a moment of clarification,' President George W. Bush said at the G-8 summit, in St. Petersburg, on July 16th. 'It's now become clear why we don't have peace in the Middle East.' He described the relationship between Hezbollah and its supporters in Iran and Syria as one of the 'root causes of instability,' and subsequently said that it was up to those countries to end the crisis. Two days later, despite calls from several governments for the United States to take the lead in negotiations to end the fighting, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that a ceasefire should be put off until 'the conditions are conducive.'

The Bush Administration, however, was closely involved in the planning of Israel's retaliatory attacks. President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney were convinced, current and former intelligence and diplomatic officials told me, that a successful Israeli Air Force bombing campaign against Hezbollah's heavily fortified underground-missile and command-and-control complexes in Lebanon could ease Israel's security concerns and also serve as a prelude to a potential American pre-emptive attack to destroy Iran's nuclear installations, some of which are also buried deep underground.

The Smell of Fear

More people will die of the Flu this year, than by the hands of terrorist.

The Smell of Fear:

Turns out that those of us who thought something smelled funny about the timing and all - peace had just broken out in Connecticut, for instance - were getting a whiff of more than just discarded aftershave.

It's outrageous enough that the arrest in London last week of 24 terror suspects was premature and dovetailed not with the accumulation of evidence against them, but with the White House's need to call the voters who dumped Joe Lieberman 'Defeatocrats' (House Majority Leader John Boehner) and coddlers of 'al-Qaida types' (Dick Cheney).

But the outrage is magnified by the fact that the Bush administration, even as it stoked national paranoia over a plot to detonate carryon liquids aboard transatlantic flights, was, according to the Associated Press, quietly defunding the development of technology to detect those very bombs. Indeed, the research arm of the Department of Homeland Security has become a 'rudderless ship without a clear way to get back on course.' This is the bipartisan assessment of the Senate Appropriations Committee, the AP said.

Only Republicans are allowed to be this incompetent! It's 'heckuva job, Brownie' all over again, but with a wicked twist. When it comes to national security, the clueless fumbling of the Homeland Security bureaucracy feeds the Bush administration's politics of fear.

'Weeks before Sept. 11, this is going to play big,' a White House official, speaking anonymously about the London arrests, told Agence France Presse. Yeah, I'll bet, especially if the Defeatocrats can do no more than cringe and whimper that they're tough on terror, too.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

British Deputy PM: Bush is CRAP


This is quite huge, actually.

Daily Kos: British Deputy PM: Bush is CRAP:

For a long time I -- and I presume most of you -- have wondered if Blair had lost his mind supporting Bush the way he does. Well, it seems that the British Deputy PM is no slouch, and feels much less constrained by diplomatic etiquette. In an eloquent and elegant moment of english, John Prescott succinctly summed up his view of the Bush presidency: Bush is crap."

Billions Face Water Shortages, Crisis Looms

I think I need to find a piece of property with a well or a spring or something like that. Hoist some buckets up in trees, with tubes to a main resevoir on the ground, but uphill from the tent.

Billions Face Water Shortages, Crisis Looms: Agency:

A third of the world is facing water shortages because of poor management of water resources and soaring water usage, driven mainly by agriculture, the International Water Management Institute said on Wednesday.

Water scarcity around the world was increasing faster than expected, with agriculture accounting for 80 percent of global water consumption, the world authority on fresh water management told a development conference in Canberra.

Globally, water usage had increased by six times in the past 100 years and would double again by 2050, driven mainly by irrigation and demands by agriculture, said Frank Rijsberman, the institute's director-general.
Billions of people in Asia and Africa already faced water shortages because of poor water management, he said.

'We will not run out of bottled water any time soon but some countries have already run out of water to produce their own food,' he said.

'Without improvements in water productivity ... the consequences of this will be even more widespread water scarcity and rapidly increasing water prices.'
The Sri Lanka-based institute, funded by international agricultural research organisations, is due to formally release its findings at a conference in Sweden later this month.

Rijsberman said water scarcity in Asia and Australia affected about 1.5 billion people and was caused by over-allocating water from rivers, while scarcity in Africa was caused by a lack of infrastructure to get the water to the people who need it.

'The water is there, the rainfall is there, but the infrastructure isn't there,' Rijsberman told reporters.
He said more needed to be done to promote rain-fed agriculture and to increase water storage in Africa, where many people live with water scarcity.

Stocks Scandal Spells Doom of Embattled Israeli Army Chief

Its just a big old Monoply Game and we all don't even rate peing the top hat or the iron.

Stocks Scandal Spells Doom of Embattled Israeli Army Chief:

Israel's army chief, under fire for selling shares hours before launching an offensive in Lebanon, was looking set to become the first head to roll in the outcry over the state's handling of the month-long war.

Israel's media have piled opprobrium on Dan Halutz since the Maariv newspaper revealed Tuesday that he had sold shares hours before the start of the Israeli offensive in Lebanon on July 12.

The story, confirmed by Halutz himself, has focused the anger of many in a country struggling to come to terms with the less than decisive outcome of its war against the fundamentalist Hezbollah militia sparked on July 12.

'There's an old Romanian saying that goes like this: 'the country is burning, but grandma is combing her hair.' The country was on fire, and all that interested Halutz was his investment portfolio,' member of parliament Colette Avital said Tuesday.

Resignation calls have come from parliament but also from the highest circles of the defence establishment.

Defence Minister Amir Peretz, also under fire for his performance since the start of the war on July 12, defended the army chief's 'loyalty and dedication'.

'His attention is entirely devoted to the war and the success of the army's missions,' said Peretz in a statement.

British Arms Merchant With Passport to the Pentagon

Well, tell!

British Arms Merchant With Passport to the Pentagon:

It is hard to tell whether BAE Systems should be flying the Union Jack or waving the Stars and Stripes.

BAE, the British military contractor, manages top-secret programs in England and the United States and makes weapons for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is the world's fourth-largest military contractor and the seventh-biggest in the United States, the only foreign Pentagon supplier to crack the top 10.

BAE says it is neither British nor American, but a new breed of military contractor, a trans-Atlantic supplier. Its American subsidiary, based in Arlington, Va., has operations in 36 states as well as England, Sweden, Israel and South Africa. The company is listed on the London Stock Exchange, but nearly 50 percent of its shares are held by American investors.

The chief executive, Mike Turner, has even hinted he might move the company to the United States if he gets more Pentagon business, a goal that is central to his strategy for growth.

It's been the absolutely right strategy for BAE to enter the American market,' said Alexandra Ashbourne, head of Ashbourne Strategic Consulting, a London research firm. 'Although others are trying to do the same, BAE has been more successful. No doubt they will be looking for more in the U.S. It's where the defense spending is.'

Of course, BAE's ability to get Pentagon business is, in large part, the result of a special relationship between Britain and the United States that allows BAE to bid more easily on Pentagon business than companies from other foreign companies. BAE has capitalized on that advantage by moving boldly and quickly. It has acquired American businesses worth more than $7 billion since 1999 and wants even more.

Robert Scheer: Spinning Old Threats Into New Fears

I just cannot believe it will work again unless Americans have become such yelow-bellied cowards, while I wasn't paying attantion.

Truthdig - Reports - Robert Scheer: Spinning Old Threats Into New Fears:

Government-induced hysteria thrives on public ignorance, which is why President Bush is so confident of turning the British bomb plot to his partisan purposes. Otherwise, how could he dare claim that his policies have made the nation safer?
Consider, first off, that the attack envisioned 'smuggling liquid-explosive ingredients onto 10 passenger planes' was outlined in chapter five of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission Report as a plot first exposed a decade ago. The originator of that planned hijacking of 12 U.S.-bound planes, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, was also the mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. According to U.S. prosecutors, his nephew, convicted terrorist Ramzi Yousef, even managed to explode such a liquid-based bomb on a Manila-Tokyo flight, killing one passenger, as part of a plot code-named 'Bojinka.'

Because checking or banning fluids was not a focus of this administration's post-Sept. 11 airport security measures, this 'coincidence' would suggest either enormous negligence on the part of those charged with protecting us or a ludicrous overreaction this past week. Knowing as we did of Mohammed's earlier plan, why wasn't the Department of Homeland Security requiring fliers to dump their bottles of hairspray and mother's milk before?

Plame lawyer plans to force Cheney, Rove testimony

Well, we can only hope that information from this trial is a steady drip, dip, drip, until election day.

Then, I hope the Wilson's nail the bastards for all the money they have stolen from the treasury, since they lied us into iraq..

Reuters AlertNet - Plame lawyer plans to force Cheney, Rove testimony:

LOS ANGELES, Aug 15 (Reuters) - A lawyer plans to use a legal precedent that allowed President Bill Clinton to be sued while in office to force Vice President Dick Cheney and presidential adviser Karl Rove to testify in a lawsuit brought by former CIA operative Valerie Plame and her husband.
California attorney Joseph Cotchett said he will ask a federal court to order Cheney, his ex-chief of staff Lewis 'Scooter' Libby and Rove to testify in depositions about their role in disclosing her classified status.

The civil lawsuit accuses them and others of conspiring to publicly identify Plame as a CIA agent to punish her husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, for writing in an op-ed piece that the Bush administration twisted intelligence about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction in the run-up to the Iraq war.

Bush poll numbers slide again.

Despite terror in the air, even Wallmart shoppers are not happy anymore.

Zogby International:

President Bush's job approval rating dipped two points in the last three weeks, despite the foiling of an airline terror plot and the adoption of a cease-fire deal between Israel and Hezbollah forces in Lebanon, a new Zogby International telephone poll shows.

The survey was conducted Aug. 11, - 15, 2006, included 1,018 respondents, and carries a margin of error of +/� 3.1 percentage points.

The numbers continue to reflect erosion in the President's political base, just 62% of Republicans give him positive marks for his job performance, while 38% give him negative marks. Even among weekly WalMart shoppers, a demographic group identified by Pollster John Zogby as a critical support group for Bush, just 45% now give him positive job marks, though his numbers among those shoppers have improved 10 points since early June.

More than three out of four, 76%, of weekly WalMart shoppers voted for Bush over Democrat John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election, earlier Zogby polling showed.
Among both conservatives and those who consider themselves very conservative, 59% give him positive marks, while 41% in each group gave him a negative job rating.
One third of respondents ' 34% ' said that, overall, the nation is headed in the right direction, while 59% said they think things are off on the wrong track.

Sirotablog: Is the FBI investigating the Lieberman campaign?

This sounded right like something out of Karl Rove's playbook right from the beginning.

Sirotablog: Is the FBI investigating the Lieberman campaign?:

Is the FBI investigating the Lieberman campaign?

Totally honest question: will Joe Lieberman's Senate campaign be prosecuted by federal authorities? As you may recall, the Lieberman campaign accused Ned Lamont's campaign of hacking its website on election day.

Lieberman's campaign has since admitted it had no evidence to support the claim. The major verifiable evidence that has been uncovered (here and here) shows that Lieberman's campaign skimped on its web service, and that its claims of losing email service on election day may have been lies. And as TPM Muckraker reported, the FBI said that if Lieberman's hacking allegations prove false, 'the FBI and federal prosecutors could pursue charges against those who reported them.' Specifically, if the charges were fabricated to slander the Lamont campaign, 'there's Title 18, Section 1001, which is providing false statements to an FBI agent. That can be prosecuted at the discretion of the U.S. Attorney's Office.'

Lieberman campaign spokesman Dan Gerstein has a long record of issuing public lies, as documented by Media Matters. And let's be clear - this is no small issue. Making deliberately dishonest claims about a campaign supposedly engaging in Watergate-style tactics goes beyond just the usual tit-for-tat and into pretty serious legal areas. Yes, yes,

I know Gerstein has said slandering other Democrats as terrorist sympathizers 'is what campaigns are all about' - but clearly, the law is pretty straightforward when it comes to making deliberately dishonest election day charges of fraud. Put in Gerstein's language, the law says that's 'not what campaigns are all about' and, in fact, could land people in jail.

Bush miffed with Iraqis......

.....they are just not grateful enough, to him, for all those hundreds of thousands of pounds of Demopcracy he ordered dropped on them.

What the hell is wrong with those people, he wonders?

AMERICAblog: Because a great nation deserves the truth:

I nearly choked on my Wheaties this morning reading the headline: 'Bush Said to Be Frustrated by Level of Public Support in Iraq.'

Apparently the President met with some leading Iraq and Middle East scholars and informed them that he's 'frustrated that the new Iraqi government ? and the Iraqi people ? had not shown greater public support for the American mission.' Further, he was reportedly 'puzzled' as to how recent anti-American protests could draw so many people.

Everybody knows he's out of touch, but wow. Just . . . wow.

This coming from a man who apparently advocates 'constructive chaos' as a policy for an entire region of the world. I'm really running out of ways to be shocked by the incompetence of this administration. The leader of the free world is so clearly out of his depth that it's incredibly difficult for me to imagine his administration doing anything right -- anything at all -- in these difficult times. One despairs.

Idaho Mountain Express: GOP using tyrants' tactic

This crap is getting a little worn, me thinks.

Idaho Mountain Express: GOP using tyrants� tactic - August 16, 2006:

Whenever dissenters mustered courage to protest tyrants, the likes of Cuba's Fidel Castro, Russia's string of Marxist dictators and Communist China's Mao Tse-tung shared a common denunciation for rebellious citizens.
'Enemies of the state,' they were branded.

Nothing, however, so crude for Karl Rove, the Bush White House's brewmeister of dirty tricks. Rove has polished the tactic of Marxist tyrants just enough that gullible Americans won't recognize the genesis of shameful demagoguery.
The early example was then-White House press secretary Ari Fleischer's warning to reporters to 'watch' what they write, lest U.S. media help terrorists.

Then, John Ashcroft, attorney general at the time, compared criticism of President Bush's policies as aiding enemies of the United States.

Now Vice President Cheney, the five-time draft evader who champions sending other families' sons and daughters to war, condemns the primary election defeat of Connecticut's Democratic U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman by anti-war candidate Ned Lamont as encouraging 'al-Qaeda types.'


Why does George Bush, etal. hate America?


'There Are Not Enough Pretty Words In All The World To Cover Up The Damage George W. Bush Has Done To His Country.'

Tide appears to be growing against GOP

By November, this wave could be an Indonesia style Tsunami.

Tide appears to be growing against GOP:

Despite a divisive Democratic primary in Connecticut and renewed attention to homeland security in the wake of a foiled terrorist plot, the political wave that Democrats hope will wash out Republican majorities in Congress appears to be getter larger.

With 83 days before the election, independent analysts and political observers say that the universe of competitive congressional races is broadening. Most of these newly identified endangered incumbents are Republicans, increasing the chances of a Democratic takeover of one or both chambers of Congress.

Republicans were expected to benefit politically from the thwarted plot to blow up airplanes bound for the U.S. and Sen. Joe Lieberman's (D-Conn.) loss to Ned Lamont, an anti-war candidate, in the Democratic primary. But lawmakers and political strategists noted that those events have not shifted perceptions about President Bush or the GOP-controlled Congress.

'I don't think this is much of a reprieve for the Republicans,' said a widely respected Republican strategist. 'This foiled airliner attack won't have a lasting impact on the electoral process because it didn't happen. I don't think it changes much of the dynamic.'

Bill Clinton Smacks Lieberman

The Big Dog reads the writing on the wall quite well.

Bill Clinton Smacks Lieberman

Lieberman has characterized his loss -- and the need for his subsequent independent run -- as liberals in the party purging those with the Lieberman-Clinton position of progressiveness in domestic politics and strong national security credentials.

'Well, if I were Joe and I was running as an independent, that's what I'd say, too,' Clinton said.

'But that's not quite right. That is, there were almost no Democrats who agreed with his position, which was, 'I want to attack Iraq whether or not they have weapons of mass destruction.''

'His position is the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld position, which was, 'Does it matter if they have weapons? None of this matters.' This is a big, important priority, and 9/11 gives us the way of attacking and deposing Saddam.''

Clinton said that a vote for Lamont was not, as Lieberman had implied, a vote against the country's security.

Democrats See Security as Key Issue for Fall - New York Times

It's about time, and they have plenty to work with.

Democrats See Security as Key Issue for Fall - New York Times:

WASHINGTON, Aug. 14 - After being outmaneuvered in the politics of national security in the last two elections, Democrats say they are determined not to cede the issue this year and are working to cast President Bush as having diminished the nation's safety.

Has Bush v. Gore Become the Case That Must Not Be Named? - New York Times

We agree.

But if the Supremes and lower courts fail to even recognize Bush v. Gore, does that make the entire Bush presidency illegal?

Has Bush v. Gore Become the Case That Must Not Be Named? - New York Times:

At a law school Supreme Court conference that I attended last fall, there was a panel on 'The Rehnquist Court.' No one mentioned Bush v. Gore, the most historic case of William Rehnquist's time as chief justice, and during the Q. and A. no one asked about it. When I asked a prominent law professor about this strange omission, he told me he had been invited to participate in another Rehnquist retrospective, and was told in advance that Bush v. Gore would not be discussed.

The ruling that stopped the Florida recount and handed the presidency to George W. Bush is disappearing down the legal world's version of the memory hole, the slot where, in George Orwell's '1984,' government workers disposed of politically inconvenient records. The Supreme Court has not cited it once since it was decided, and when Justice Antonin Scalia, who loves to hold forth on court precedents, was asked about it at a forum earlier this year, he snapped, 'Come on, get over it. (Not a chance, you old goat)

A Gap In Their Armor

Karl Rove can kiss my ass. He doesn't scare me, nor should Democrats allow the pink frogman to cause them to doubt themselves.

I would advise Democracts to find some of the old speeches by Bobby and JFK, FDR and Martin. Read them. That is who we are.

A Gap In Their Armor:

The Democratic Party has a self-image problem.

Talk to Democrats at every level about the strong position the party is in for this fall's elections and the conversation inevitably ends with a variation of: 'Yeah, if we don't blow it.' Karl Rove's greatest victory is how much he has spooked Democrats about themselves.

Pre-election Terrorizing

Some people call us boomers, some call us the 60's generation; but what we really are is the Atomic Generation. My generation was the first to live their enitre lives under the ever-present threat of "The Bomb."

We all remember Civil Defense drills where we were told to hide under our desks and cover our heads with notebook paper, so as to protect ourselves from fall-out. Our generation was told many such ridiculous thing. We remember the Cuban missle crisis, and the bomb shelters people spent good money on building, when if they had had any real idea about the A-Bomb and what a 20 megaton blast would do, they wouldn' t have bothered.

Fear just doesn't work forever. I can remember my mother saying that if the "Russians" were going to drop The Bomb, she wished they would hit her square in the head with it, because she would want to be around afterard. Her sisters husband was a missles expert of somekind (all very secret) so my family never bought the "notebook paper will protect you from fall-out" idiocy, not did we spend money on fallout shelters.

By the time Regan was sworn in, I can remember thinking, if we are going to have nuclear war, let's just get it the hell over with, because I am sick to damn death of hearing about it. I never was one for living in fear, except of Mother.

That is pretty much where I am now, with terrorism.

I have a much better chance of being hit by an 18 wheeler on the highway, but I am not advocationg killing all truckers and their families, or blowing up trusckstops from coast to coast, just so I can feel safe.

The fact is, life isn't safe anymore than it is fair.

Americans need to get out of their wet pants and get on with life, which in my mind means getting rid of the people who play games with terrorism.

Pre-election Terrorizing - Los Angeles Times:

THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION is a past master at playing politics with terrorism, portraying critics of its various antiterrorism initiatives as naive or even accusing them, in the words of former Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft, of giving 'ammunition to America's enemies.'

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Raw Story | Moon-owned paper features Bush-Rumsfeld conflict

Uh Oh. This could mean the bombing of Iraq is being planned in earnest. As long as our troops sit in Iraq, it would be insane to bomb (nuke) Iran.

Rumsfeld isn't giving up. The words aren't in his vocabulary. He may be trying to clear the way.

The Raw Story Moon-owned paper features Bush-Rumsfeld conflict:

A report buried deeply in an April edition of the New Yorker--which claims it is an 'open secret' in Washington that Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld wants to exit Iraq--is being featured today as front page news in the Middle East Times, RAW STORY has learned.

The paper is published in Cairo, under the control of the Egyptian Ministry of Information.

| NYT: As weeks wore on, Bush Administration began to doubt Israel could win an outright military victory in Lebanon

Isn't this pretty much what the IDF thought about BushCo after the first 1 1/2 years in Iraq?

The Raw Story NYT: As weeks wore on, Bush Administration began to doubt Israel could win an outright military victory in Lebanon:

As the weeks 'wore on,' the Bush Administration began to doubt that Israel could win an outright military victory in Lebanon, according to an early version of an article published in Monday's New York Times.

An advance version of the Times article obtained by RAW STORY included references to such doubts as expressed by an unidentified senior Bush Administration official, but for unknown reasons it was left out of the published article.

'When the war in Lebanon began in mid-July, American diplomacy was predicated on giving the vaunted Israeli armed forces the time it needed to destroy Hezbollah militarily,' Warren Hoge had once written.

Still Battling Voter Suppression

Geeze Louise, the WaPo is just now figuring this out?

Still Battling Voter Suppression

Our Porous Air Defenses on 9/11

Sorry, still doesn't add up...........

Our Porous Air Defenses on 9/11 - New York Times:

No topic investigated by the 9/11 commission hatched more conspiracy theories than the failure of American air defense systems to intercept any of the four planes that had been hijacked by terrorists. That makes three new reports particularly welcome. Together, they shed some light on why civil aviation authorities, the military and the highest officials of the Bush administration failed to respond quickly enough to avert catastrophe.

The reports include a new book written by the co-chairmen of the 9/11 commission, a Vanity Fair article based on tapes released by the military, and a 2005 report from the inspector general of the Defense Department that was finally released last week. They paint a picture of confusion as civilian and military authorities struggled to grasp and respond to what was happening. There was absolutely no evidence that any air defenders deliberately stood aside to let the terrorists have their way or that the military itself fired a cruise missile into the Pentagon, as conspiracy theories have suggested.

FBI: No terror groups in cell phone case

Are they by any chance conneted to the Swiftboat Vets for truth?

FBI: No terror groups in cell phone case - Yahoo! News:

CARO, Mich. - The FBI said Monday it had no information to indicate that the three Texas men arrested with about 1,000 cell phones in their van had any direct connection to known terrorist groups.

Also, a prosecutor in a separate Ohio case said he can't prove a terrorism link to two men arrested after buying large numbers of cell phones and will drop terrorism charges against them.

In the Michigan case, authorities had increased patrols on the 5-mile-long Mackinac Bridge after local prosecutors said investigators believed the men were targeting the span.
Local authorities didn't say what they believed the men intended to do with the phones, most of which were prepaid TracFones, but Caro's police chief noted that cell phones can be untraceable and used as detonators.

The FBI issued a news release Monday saying there is no imminent threat to the bridge linking Michigan's upper and lower peninsulas.

Religion-related fraud getting worse

They're getting ready for he Rapure.

Religion-related fraud getting worse - Yahoo! News:

Randall W. Harding sang in the choir at Crossroads Christian Church in Corona, Calif., and donated part of his conspicuous wealth to its ministries. In his business dealings, he underscored his faith by naming his investment firm JTL, or 'Just the Lord.' Pastors and churchgoers alike entrusted their money to him.

By the time Harding was unmasked as a fraud, he and his partners had stolen more than $50 million from their clients, and Crossroads became yet another cautionary tale in what investigators say is a worsening problem plaguing the nation's churches.

Billions of dollars has been stolen in religion-related fraud in recent years, according to the North American Securities Administrators Association, a group of state officials who work to protect investors.

Between 1984 and 1989, about $450 million was stolen in religion-related scams, the association says. In its latest count ' from 1998 to 2001 ' the toll had risen to $2 billion. Rip-offs have only become more common since

Monday, August 14, 2006

Hillary Clinton Doesn't Take Cheney "Seriously Anymore" - August 14, 2006

Why doesn't she call for a psych. exam for Cheney and Bush?

All Headline News - Hillary Clinton Doesn't Take Cheney "Seriously Anymore" - August 14, 2006:

Washington, D.C. (AHN) - U.S. Senator and former First Lady, Hillary Clinton (D-NY) says she has lost faith in what Vice President Dick Cheney says about the War on Terror.
Clinton lashed out against Cheney's comments that Ned Lamont's anti-war victory in a Connecticut Democratic primary against pro-Iraq Senator Joe Lieberman was sending a bad signal to terrorists worldwide.

Senator Clinton says, 'I don't take anything he says seriously anymore. I think that he has been a very counterproductive even destructive force in our country and I am very disheartened by the failure of leadership from the president and vice president.'

According to New York Public Radio, WNYC, during a campaign stop in the Bronx yesterday, Clinton accused the administration of shortchanging New York of its homeland security money. A spokeswoman for the vice president said his comments on the importance of a strong national security strategy 'speak for themselves.'

Gas prices inch up to hit another high - Yahoo! News

Fun in the sun is costing Americans bigtime this year, and next year will probably be impossible for most of us.

Gas prices inch up to hit another high - Yahoo! News:

CAMARILLO, Calif. - Nationwide gas prices hit yet another record in the last three weeks, rising just over one cent to nearly $3.03 per gallon, according to a survey released Sunday.

Lamont: Lieberman Sounded Like Cheney

Holy Cow! A Democrat who fights back?

Mr. Lamont, we love you.

ABC News: Lamont: Lieberman Sounded Like Cheney:

WASHINGTON Aug 13, 2006 (AP)- Democratic Senate nominee Ned Lamont, the anti-war candidate who toppled Sen. Joe Lieberman in the Connecticut primary, says he was surprised by Lieberman and Vice President Dick Cheney's claims that his victory could embolden terrorists.

'My God, here we have a terrorist threat against hearth and home and the very first thing that comes out of their mind is how can we turn this to partisan advantage. I find that offensive,' Lamont said in an interview Sunday with The Associated Press.

After British officials disclosed they had thwarted a terrorist airline bombing plot on Thursday, Lieberman warned that Lamont's call for a phased withdrawal of troops from Iraq would be 'taken as a tremendous victory' by terrorists.