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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Liar


"They (the media) have spent no time working on the background of Obama. It is other people having to come up with the fact that this guy -- numerous times, three times in Illinois -- voted for legislation that would allow doctors and patients to murder babies who survived abortions and were out of the womb."

this is a flat out lie. just like almost everything else he says to inflame his stupid audience to hate others.

here is the preface to the bill: it is public record.
Deletes everything. Amends the Illinois Abortion Law of 1975.
Provides that no abortion procedure that, in the medical judgment of the attending physician, has a reasonable likelihood of resulting in a live born child shall be undertaken unless there is in attendance a physician other than the physician performing or inducing the abortion who shall address the child's viability and provide medical care for the child. Provides that a physician inducing an abortion that results in a live born child shall provide for the soonest practicable
attendance of a physician other than the physician performing or
inducing the abortion to immediately assess the child's viability andprovide medical care for the child. Provides that a live child born as a result of an abortion shall be fully recognized as a human person
and that all reasonable measures consistent with good medical practice shall be taken to preserve the life and health of the child. Effective immediately.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Who Orchestrated the Fall of Bear Stearns? | | AlterNet

Americans know all the sleazy details of the Edwards affair. But they remain in the dark about a scandal that affects the livelihoods of millions.

This is one scandal the National Enquirer has not reported. No babies with mystery fathers, no former vice presidential candidates cowering in a hotel basement to escape the paparazzi.

This scandal, relegated to the business pages if covered at all, is un-juicy compared to l'affaire Edwards, with a wife betrayed, children humiliated, hypocrisy exposed -- it is a small wonder, after the ethical hemming and hawing, that the big-time publishers and broadcasters jumped in to take part in the fun.

Yet, entertainment value aside, the Edwards scandal directly affected almost nobody but the Edwards family and a few disillusioned followers. The Bear Stearns conspiracy scandal affected and continues to affect tens of thousands of people in all sorts of ways.

As the story lacked prurient interest, it was left to Bloomberg.com to unearth persuasive information that the Wall Street firm was seemingly brought down by a conspiracy that netted its participants a profit of upwards of $250 million on an investment of $1.7 million in a week or so. Nice work, if you can get it.

The putative conspirators, whose name or names have not been made public, pulled off their heist with ease. They bought a bunch of what Wall Street calls "puts." A put is a piece of paper guaranteeing its owner the right to sell 100 shares of stock at a stated price within a specified period of time. In the case of this bank job, the period of time was as little as five days.

With Bear Stearns stock selling at over $60 a share, somebody bought the right to sell almost 6 million shares at $30 a share. To make money on these puts, the price of Bear Stearns stock would have to lose more than half its value fast. In fact, in the days immediately after the unknown person or persons bought all those puts, Bears Stearns stock dropped like a duck shot out of the sky, to a price of $10 a share or less. The persons behind the scheme then bought Bear Stearns shares at $10 or less and exercised the puts, thereby selling them for $30 and pocketing the difference.

How could someone know that in a matter of days the fifth-largest trading house on Wall Street would see the value of its stock drop to next to nothing?

"Even if I were the most bearish man on earth, I can't imagine buying puts 50 percent below the price with just over a week to expiration," says Thomas Haugh, general partner of Chicago-based options trading firm PTI Securities & Futures LP, cited by Gary Matsumoto of Bloomberg. "It's not even on the page of rational behavior, unless you know something."

Then with the price of stock still above $50, somebody bought puts giving them the right to sell the stock at five dollars a share -- which is about what you would expect to be the price of the shares of a company in bankruptcy. Matsumoto quotes one broker as saying, "When you buy $5 strikes [puts] when the stock is trading over $50, you either have to be manipulating, or you have to have insider information." Another broker quoted in his report remarked, "Nobody in their right mind would buy that put unless you knew what was going down."

The timing of the purchase of the puts screams out that a well-placed person inside Bear Stearns was telling someone on the outside of the firm's increasing confusion and division. At a crucial moment when rumors were rife on Wall Street that Bear Stearns customers would not be able to withdraw their money, the stock market was hit by a large number of orders to sell Bear Stearns stock. That augmented the force of the rumors of insolvency already working to depress the price, even as panicky customers fell over one another getting their money out. There are too many disastrous coincidences here to be explained just by bad luck.

The name of the bearer of this bad luck remains hidden. A spokeswoman for the Chicago Board of Options Exchange, where the puts were bought, has refused to tell Bloomberg the name.

We know the name of the mother of the baby John Edwards did or did not sire, but we are in the dark as to who may have authored the scheme that cost thousands of people their jobs and their savings and that gave the financial markets a major kick down the mountain, a fall that will continue to take millions of us with them.
Who Orchestrated the Fall of Bear Stearns? | | AlterNet

Right Wing Hate speech.

And we wonder why all these whacko conservatives are running around shooting and killing "liberal" democrats?  The people who listen to these gas bags are as stupid at the gas bags themselves.  Filled with hate.  They'll tell you it's liberals who are always crying and bitching but it's them projecting.  Can someone name me a left wing liberal who shot and killed anyone intentionally?  One who spewed this kind of hate to incite hatred and murder of conservatives?
A sample.
"I tell people don't kill all the liberals. Leave enough so we can have two on every campus -- living fossils -- so we will never forget what these people stood for." -- Rush Limbaugh
"I would have no problem with [New York Times editor Bill Keller] being sent to the gas chamber." -- Melanie Morgan
""[T]he day will come when unpleasant things are going to happen to a bunch of stupid liberals and it's going to be very amusing to watch." -- Lee Rogers
"And if Al Qaeda comes in here and blows you up, we're not going to do anything about it. We're going to say, look, every other place in America is off limits to you, except San Francisco. You want to blow up the Coit Tower? Go ahead." -- Bill O'Reilly
"Howard Dean should be arrested and hung for treason or put in a hole until the end of the Iraq war!"-- Michael Reagan
"Some liberals have become even too crazy for Texas to execute, which is a damn shame. They're always saying -- we're oppressed, we're oppressed so let's do it. Let's oppress them." -- Ann Coulter
"We need somebody to put rat poisoning in Justice Stevens' creme brulee. ... That's just a joke, for you in the media." -- Ann Coulter
My only regret with Timothy McVeigh is he did not go to the New York Times Building." -- Ann Coulter
"We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed too." -- Ann Coulter
And Joe Wilson has no right to complain. And I think people like Tim Russert and the others, who gave this guy such a free ride and all the media, they're the ones to be shot, not Karl Rove. -- Rep. Peter King (R)
Where does George Soros have all his money? Do you know? Do you know where George Soros, the big left-wing loon who's financing all these smear [web]sites, do you know where his money is? Curaçao. Curaçao. They ought to hang this Soros guy. -- Bill O'Reilly
"Has there ever been a more revealing moment this year?" Mr. Rove asked. "Let me just put this in fairly simple terms: Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Senator Durbin to the Mideast, certainly putting our troops in greater danger. No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals." -- Karl Rove
Miller is not alone, though some are more sanguine when it comes to evaluating the roster of contenders. Here's a note I got recently from a friend and former Delta Force member, who has been observing American politics from the trenches: "These bastards like Clark and Kerry and that incipient ass, Dean, and Gephardt and Kucinich and that absolute mental midget Sharpton, race baiter, should all be lined up and shot." -- Kathleeen Parker
Right now, even people sitting on the fence would like George Bush to drop a nuclear weapon on an Arab country. They don't even care which one it would be. I can guarantee you -- I don't need to go to Mr. Schmuck [pollster John] Zogby and ask him his opinion. I don't need anyone's opinion. I'll give you my opinion, because I got a better stethoscope than those fools. It's one man's opinion based upon my own analysis. The most -- I tell you right now -- the largest percentage of Americans would like to see a nuclear weapon dropped on a major Arab capital. They don't even care which one. They'd like an indiscriminate use of a nuclear weapon.
In fact, Christianity has been one of the great salvations on planet Earth. It's what's necessary in the Middle East. Others have written about it, I think these people need to be forcibly converted to Christianity but I'll get here a little later, I'll move up to that. It's the only thing that can probably turn them into human beings. ... Because these primitives can only be treated in one way, and I don't think smallpox and a blanket is good enough incidentally. Just before -- I'm going to give you a little precursor to where I'm going. Smallpox in a blanket, which the U.S. Army gave to the Cherokee Indians on their long march to the West, was nothing compared to what I'd like to see done to these people, just so you understand that I'm not going to be too intellectual about my analysis here in terms of what I would recommend, what Doc Savage recommends as an antidote to this kind of poison coming out of the Middle East from these non-humans. -- Michael Savage

Daily Kos: Why aren't these ads on the air?

To see the ad: Daily Kos: Why aren't these ads on the air?

The same vote against giving our troops the body armor they needed that the ad criticizes was also cast by 17 Republican Senators seeking reelection this year:

Lamar Alexander (TN)
Saxby Chambliss (GA)
Thad Cochran (MS)
Norm Coleman (MN)
Susan Collins (ME)
John Cornyn (TX)
Elizabeth Dole (NC)
Mike Enzi (WY)
Lindsey Graham (SC)
Jim Inhofe (OK)
Mitch McConnell (KY)
Pat Roberts (KS)
Jeff Sessions (AL)
Gordon Smith (OR)
Ted Stevens (AK)
John Sununu (NH)

And not only that, but these Senators had all been elected or reelected just months before. That is, the Senate class of 2002, elected in November of that year, cast these votes in April of 2003, at the very beginning of their terms, and nearly six years away from having to face the voters for it.

They thought you'd forget. They needed you to forget.

But one thing they weren't counting on was the troops still being deployed and still fighting six years later.

But they are. And though some of these clowns have since tried to make amends, the fact remains that at the critical time, they put party politics over the lives of our troops, and voted against giving them the armor they needed.

They should all go down for it, and American voters should make a special point of sinking them for their cowardly votes that they hoped we'd forget.

These ads are just the way to do it, too. But they're not on the air.

They've been produced, as you can see. All they need are new tags to identify the 17 Republican Senators up for reelection this year who voted against giving our troops adequate body armor, and they're ready to go. They've been proven in the field, and you can see the impact they'd have right here before your very eyes.

But they're not on the air. And as far as I can tell, there are no plans to put them there.

Seventeen Republican Senators, some of them very, very vulnerable this year. What could we do with those seats in our hands?

Why aren't these ads on the air?

Big time Democrats, donors, and other convention goers: think on this, please. Use the time we spend together in Denver to remedy this.

Daily Kos: Why aren't these ads on the air?

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Don't miss Bill Moyers on PBS tomorrow night!

Bill Moyers usually has highly knowledgeable guests on his show.  Tomorrow looks like it's no exception.  His show starts at 8:00 pm central on pbs.  don't know about anywhere else.

"Is an imperial presidency destroying what America stands for? Bill Moyers sits down with history and international relations expert and former Army Col. Andrew J. Bacevich, who identifies three major problems facing our democracy - the crises of economy, government and militarism - and calls for a redefinition of the American way of life. "Because of this preoccupation with the presidency," says Bacevich, "the president has become what we have instead of genuine politics, instead of genuine democracy." Respected across the political spectrum, Bacevich has contributed to The Nation, The American Conservative and Foreign Affairs, among others. His latest book is "The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism."

U.S. says Israel cannot fly over Iraq to attack Iran

The American administration has rejected an Israeli request for military equipment and support that would improve Israel's ability to attack Iran's nuclear facilities.

A report published last week by the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) states that military strikes are unlikely to destroy Iran's centrifuge program for enriching uranium.

The Americans viewed the request, which was transmitted (and rejected) at the highest level, as a sign that Israel is in the advanced stages of preparations to attack Iran. They therefore warned Israel against attacking, saying such a strike would undermine American interests. They also demanded that Israel give them prior notice if it nevertheless decided to strike Iran.
As compensation for the requests it rejected, Washington offered to improve Israel's defenses against surface-to-surface missiles.

Israel responded by saying it reserves the right to take whatever action it deems necessary if diplomatic efforts to halt Iran's nuclearization fail.

Senior Israeli officials had originally hoped that U.S. President George Bush would order an American strike on Iran's nuclear facilities before leaving office, as America's military is far better equipped to conduct such a strike successfully than is Israel's.

Jerusalem also fears that an Israeli strike, even if it succeeded well enough to delay Iran's nuclear development for a few years, would give Iran international legitimacy for its program, which it currently lacks. Israel, in contrast, would be portrayed as an aggressor, and would be forced to contend alone with Iran's retaliation, which would probably include thousands of missile strikes by Iranian allies Hezbollah, Hamas and perhaps even Syria.

Recently, however, Israel has concluded that Bush is unlikely to attack, and will focus instead on ratcheting up diplomatic pressure on Tehran. It prefers to wait until this process has been exhausted, though without conceding the military option. Israel's assumption is that Iran will continue to use delaying tactics, and may even agree to briefly suspend its uranium enrichment program in an effort to see out the rest of Bush's term in peace.

The American-Israeli dispute over a military strike against Iran erupted during Bush's visit to Jerusalem in May. At the time, Bush held a private meeting on the Iranian threat with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak, and the Israelis presented their request for certain specific items of military equipment, along with diplomatic and security backing.

Following Bush's return to Washington, the administration studied Israel's request, and this led it to suspect that Israel was planning to attack Iran within the next few months. The Americans therefore decided to send a strong message warning it not to do so.

U.S. National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen both visited here in June and, according to the Washington Post, told senior Israeli defense officials that Iran is still far from obtaining nuclear weapons, and that an attack on Iran would undermine American interests. Therefore, they said, the U.S. would not allow Israeli planes to overfly Iraq en route to Iran.
U.S. puts brakes on Israeli plan for attack on Iran nuclear facilities - Haaretz - Israel News

The left wing media. Yeah right.

CNN has a new line up of political commentators. Let's see who they are and compare that to the one's they've already got on board. OK?
Their 5 newest additions:
* David Brody, senior national correspondent for the Christian Broadcasting Network. A veteran journalist of more than 20 years, Brody writes the political blog, “The Brody File.”

* Alex Castellanos, a Republican strategist and former campaign consultant for Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. Castellanos is a partner in National Media Inc., a political and corporate consulting firm.

* Dana Milbank, a Washington Post staff writer and author of the thrice-weekly “Washington Sketch” column. A veteran of political coverage, he has also worked for The New Republic and The Wall Street Journal, and his latest book is Homo Politicus: The Strange and Scary Tribes That Run Our Government.

* Hilary Rosen, a Democratic strategist and currently the political director and Washington editor-at-large for HuffingtonPost.com. In a previous role, she was chairman and CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America.

* Tara Wall, deputy editorial page editor and columnist for The Washington Times. Previously, she served as director of the office of public affairs at the Administration for Children and Families, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and as director of outreach communications for the Republican National Committee.

You see there is one liberal, Hilary Rosen.. everyone else is a conservative except Milbank who is just as azz hole. He's a conservative in an independent suit.

Now let's see who is already on staff.

Frances Fragos Townsend, Bush’s former chief terrorism adviser.

* Tony Snow (conservative Republican)

* J.C. Watts (conservative Republican)

* William Bennett (conservative Republican)

During its coverage of the New Hampshire primaries, CNN invited Ralph Reed, you remember Reed. the man who screwed over indian tribes for Jack Abramoff. The Abramoff who is in prison right now for corruption because of bribing national representatives like Tom Delay. who is also awaiting sentencing for corruption but who is a frequent commentator on Faux.

So out of every one of the last 9 hires, there is one liberal. tell me again about the liberal media? Just because all of those right wing commentators keep spewing the mantra of "liberal media" doesn't make it true. But they've got the brain dead believing it.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Impeach Bush or fire Pelosi

Sign on to the petition if you don't want us to got into wars based on lies.  if you are sick of America reverting back to the Spanish inquisition tactics of torture.  if you would like to keep the constitution in it's present form where it protects us from being spied upon without warrant.  sent Pelosi a letter she won't forget.

They pollute, we don't decide.

    Washington - The government owns hundreds of underground fuel tanks - many designed for emergencies back in the Cold War - that need to be inspected for leaks of hazardous substances that could be making local water undrinkable.

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency has known since at least the 1990s that tanks under its supervision around the country could be leaking fuel into soil and groundwater, according to Associated Press interviews and research.

    The agency knows of at least 150 underground tanks that need to be inspected for leaks, according to spokeswoman Debbie Wing. FEMA also is trying to determine by September whether an additional 124 tanks are underground or above ground and whether they are leaking.

    There has been no documentation of reported leaks or harm to communities from the FEMA tanks, Wing said, although former agency officials and congressional testimony suggest that the federal tanks have long been seen as a problem.

    Many of these tanks were built to store 5,000 gallons of diesel fuel and placed around the country at the height of the Cold War back in the 1960s to fuel electric generators that could sustain emergency broadcasts by radio stations in case of a nuclear attack or other catastrophe. Made of steel, the tanks inevitably rust over time and allow fuel to escape.

    Steel tanks left in the ground for decades rot like Swiss cheese, said Pat Coyne, director of business development for Environmental Data Resources Inc. Coyne said a joke in the industry is: "What percentage of steel tanks leak? 100 percent!"

    In the late 1980s and early 1990s the government insisted on better-made tanks. The underground tanks of today must have safety measures including leak detection and an extra shell made with material resistant to gasoline, diesel and ethanol, Coyne said.

    The FEMA tanks are part of a larger problem. More than 500,000 leaking storage tanks - most of which are filled with fuel and oil - are buried across the country, according to Environmental Data Resources, based in Milford, Conn. That's about half of all the underground tanks in the country, the consulting company says. Those tanks are owned privately or by local, state and federal agencies.

    Because they're underground, leaking tanks can go undetected for years. If diesel leaks into drinking water, affected people could be at a higher risk of cancer, kidney damage and nervous system disorders, said Rochelle Cardinale, one of the lead coordinators for underground tank cleanup in Iowa. A gallon of fuel can contaminate 1 million gallons of water.

    FEMA says the hundreds of federal tanks have not always been its responsibility. The Federal Communications Commission also has had oversight, although FCC spokesman Clyde Ensslin said the commission believed FEMA was responsible for monitoring and maintaining the tanks. FEMA said it spent $8 million in the 1990s removing and repairing some of them.

    FEMA now acknowledges that it is the agency responsible for all of the tanks in question.

    But Senate testimony from 1992 suggests FEMA has long tried to avoid having to deal with the tanks.

    "For years FEMA resisted acknowledging the problem or seeking funds for remediation," former FEMA union president Leo Bosner said in 1992 before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee.

    He said then there were more than 2,000 underground oil storage tanks that FEMA had paid for or acquired over the years. But FEMA came out with a legal opinion that year concluding that it wasn't responsible for the tanks.

    Congress eventually decided it didn't matter which agency owned the tanks - FEMA would fund tank inspection, removal and replacement, said Bill Cumming, who at the time ran FEMA's ethics program.

    FEMA did eventually receive reports about leaking tanks, said Jane Bullock, who was the agency's chief of staff in the Clinton administration.

    Many of FEMA's out-of-use fuel tanks today have yet to be inspected because officials only recently finished going through decades of paperwork from the different federal agencies that at one point participated in the emergency broadcasting program.

    "We are committed to upholding our obligations to remediate, remove or upgrade them as necessary," FEMA spokesman Dan Stoneking told the AP. "We believe in adhering to any relevant environmental rule or law and will do so."

    FEMA disclosed the problems to the EPA in August 2007, a step that could lead to reduced penalties against FEMA. In May, the EPA formally requested information about the status of the tanks.

    FEMA said it now oversees 1,129 defunct tanks - including the hundreds that could be leaking - many of which were inherited from the FCC and the Civil Defense Preparedness Agency.

    Recently FEMA found the location of most of the defunct tanks by looking through old records. To determine the tanks' conditions requires a physical inspection, and agency contractors have been going to each location and searching with hand-held metal detectors and other tools.

    FEMA will determine what to do with the defunct tanks - such as remove them or fill them with sand - on a case-by-case basis, because of varying state laws.

    FEMA would not provide the exact location of the tanks, and it has not contacted all the states about the tanks in question. Florida officials, for instance, did not know about these out-of-use tanks in their state.

    A 2005 law required all federal agencies to submit an inventory to Congress and the EPA of all the tanks they owned or operated, and whether the tanks were in compliance with the law.

    The inventory was pushed by private gasoline retailers who long have argued that they were being targeted for violations by a government that wasn't following its own rules.

    In the 1960s the federal government gave fuel tanks and generators to radio stations across the country so that vital information could be broadcast during an emergency. The program was managed by the FCC in some parts of the country, and elsewhere by the former Civil Defense Preparedness Agency. Broadcast stations volunteered for the program, and by 1979 about 700 stations participated.

    When FEMA was created in 1979 it took over programs run by the civil defense agency. Broadcast stations began to drop out of the program and funding was slowly eliminated between 1987 and 1994.

    FEMA manages fewer tanks now because of new broadcast technology and a realignment of oversight responsibilities to states. Now FEMA oversees only 38 in-use underground tanks that are being maintained to comply with EPA rules. These tanks are used for broadcast stations and to fuel generators to keep emergency operations centers running during a disaster.

t r u t h o u t | Underground FEMA Fuel Tanks Could Leak

2008's First Disenfranchised Voters: Injured and Homeless Veterans | Democracy and Elections | AlterNet

The first large block of voters to be disenfranchised in 2008 are the wounded warriors from recent wars and homeless veterans living at hundreds of Department of Veterans Affairs facilities across the country, according to veterans and voting rights activists.

"President Bush and Karl Rove are attempting to block voter registration of at least 200,000 and possibly as much as 400,000 veterans," said Paul Sullivan, president of Veterans for Common Sense, referring to injured former soldiers from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in various VA treatment facilities, veterans living in the VA's nursing homes, and homeless veterans living in VA shelters.

"We may have all kinds of hurdles," Sullivan said. "We may have the clock running out on us, but we will not give up. This needs to be shoved in the face of every single elected official in the country. We can fix this in a second We are talking about two or three sentences in legislation. We are talking about the integrity of our democracy."

In recent months, the Department of Veterans Affairs has resisted efforts by U.S. senators and top state election officials to allow voter registration drives in its facilities. Just last month, the VA issued new rules that banned election officials -- whether local registrars or secretaries of state -- from registering voters, saying it was a partisan activity that interfered with its medical mission. In most states, any time a person changes their residence they must update their voter registration in order to vote.

The VA's ban on registration drives, even by state constitutional officers, provoked a rebuke from the National Association of Secretaries of State -- a resolution urging the VA to rescind its policy -- and revived the issue in Congress, where separate House and Senate bills would force the VA to become a voter registration agency like state motor vehicle departments, where people are proactively given an opportunity to register to vote. Under the VA's current policy, any resident in its facilities must seek help with voter registration and voting.

The problem with the congressional efforts, according to Sullivan and others following this issue, is that the VA appears to be on course to run out the clock before meaningful voter registration drives could be undertaken for this year's presidential election.

Under the most optimistic scenario, even if the Congress passed legislation within a week of reconvening, which would be mid-September, the president would have two weeks to sign it into law. That timeline places the bill's potential adoption very close to the first week in October, when voter registration closes for the November election in 27 states. Moreover, at that time, state election officials would have little time to organize and implement voter registration drives, voting rights activists said.

"This is a bill you can't vote against," said Scott Rafferty, who sued the VA in 2004 when the agency blocked voter registration efforts by Democrats at its campus in Menlo Park, California, but allowed the Republican Party onto the campus to register voters. "But it is almost physically impossible to get it passed and implemented in time."

On Friday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rejected the Menlo Park appeal, upholding the VA's right to regulate voter registration activities at its facilities. The court said the agency could bar anyone from its grounds because of a presumed affiliation with a political party, Rafferty said.

The Appeals Court ruling means only Congress can change the VA policy.

"There may be one ace in the hole," Veteran for Common Sense's Sullivan said, "and that is a funding bill. If we can get any of this legislation tacked onto a funding bill, the president has to sign it."

Congressional staffers said the issue was a priority and would see action after Congress reconvenes in September. Yet there is little evidence to suggest the VA would abide by such a law before the presidential election. VA officials have stated in recent forums that the agency was opposed to allowing voter registration drives, even by election officials. Its lawyers said so much before the Ninth Circuit in June during a hearing on the Menlo Park litigation, and more recently at the secretaries of states' conference in late July. Moreover, the Ninth Circuit ruling fortifies the agency's stance.

In fact, just last week in Connecticut, where the Secretary of State, Susan Bysiewicz, was allowed into a VA facility to register voters after threatening to sue the agency -- after Bysiewicz and the state's attorney general were turned away in July -- VA officials sought to limit her efforts to register VA staff or outpatients, her staff said, saying that could be construed as a voter registration drive. Those VA officials also resisted her request to return this fall to show residents how new voting machines worked.

"This is not a solution," said Av Harris, her spokesman, saying the VA simply made enough concessions to blunt the threatened suit. "If the other secretaries of state are not as active as we are, the VA will not do anything for them."

The most pragmatic assessment for action on the voter registration issue suggests a new policy will only come in 2009, after the presidential election, when Congress can look at several voting rights laws that guarantee access to the ballot, regardless of the political implications for the party holding the presidency or a congressional majority.

"While the hope for 2009 is a real one, the practical effect now is that the first voters who have been suppressed by the GOP in 2008 are the wounded warriors living in the government's own facilities," Rafferty said.

2008's First Disenfranchised Voters: Injured and Homeless Veterans | Democracy and Elections | AlterNet

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The BRAD BLOG : Conyers to Probe Bush Admin's Forged Iraq Intel

For Immediate Release: Monday, August 11, 2008

Conyers Announces Review of Allegations of Bush Administration's Forged Iraq Intelligence

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) today announced plans to review allegations that senior Bush Administration officials ordered the forgery and dissemination of false intelligence documents as reported by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Ron Suskind, in his new book, "The Way of the World: A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism."

"Mr. Suskind reports that the Bush Administration, in its pursuit of war, created and promoted forged documents about Iraq," said Conyers. "I am particularly troubled that the decision to disseminate this fabricated intelligence is alleged to have come from the highest reaches of the administration. The administration's attempt to challenge Mr. Suskind's reporting appears to have been effectively dismissed by the publication of the author's interview recordings and transcripts. I have instructed my staff to conduct a careful review of Mr. Suskind's allegations and the role played by senior administration officials in this matter."

A number of issues raised in Mr. Suskind's book to be reviewed include:

  • The origin of the allegedly forged document that formed the basis for Bush's 2003 State of the Union assertion that Iraq sought yellowcake uranium from Niger;
  • The role of this document in creating the false impression that 9/11 hijacker Mohammed Atta had a working relationship with Iraq;
  • The relationship between this document and other reported examples of the Bush Administration considering other deceptive schemes to justify or provoke war with Iraq, such as the reported consideration of painting a U.S. aircraft with UN colors in order to provoke Iraq into military confrontation;
  • Allegations that the Bush Administration deliberately ignored information from Iraq's chief intelligence officer that Iraq possessed no WMDs;
  • The payment of $5 million to Iraq's chief intelligence officer and his secret settlement in Jordan, beyond the reach of investigators;
  • The September 2007 detainment and interrogation of Mr. Suskind's research assistant, Greg Jackson, by federal agents in Manhattan. Jackson's notes were also confiscated.

The BRAD BLOG : Conyers to Probe Bush Admin's Forged Iraq Intel

U.S: Air Force Think Tank Advises Against Iran Attack | ForeignPolicy | AlterNet

Amid rising speculation about the possibility of an Israeli or U.S. bombing attack on Iranian nuclear facilities earlier this month, a major study produced for the U.S. Air Force by a top defense think tank concluded that U.S. military action against Iran was "likely to have negative effects for the United States".

The study, by the RAND Project AIR FORCE, a division of the California-based RAND Corporation, was released Jul. 9, the same day that Tehran test-fired medium- and long-range missiles in an apparent response to reports the previous week that Israel had carried out secret exercises designed to simulate a raid on Iran's nuclear facilities the previous month.

Amid all the fireworks, however, the report, which also called for a multi-faceted strategy designed to encourage democratic development in Iran, was ignored by the mainstream media.

Entitled "Iran's Political, Demographic, and Economic Vulnerabilities," the 156-page report also called for Washington to "tone down" its policy statements supporting "regime change" and to "discourage Iranian ethnic groups from revolting against the regime". Both policies, it said, are likely to be counter-productive.

U.S: Air Force Think Tank Advises Against Iran Attack | ForeignPolicy | AlterNet

If I Were a Betting Man, I'd Wager that Cheney Was Behind the Anthrax Attacks | | AlterNet

You'd have to be a terribly cautious and willfully blind person not to think that the Bush Administration was capable of orchestrating the anthrax attacks. You'd almost have to be a fool.

Years after the anthrax attacks were aimed at Democratic senators who were necessary to pass the "spy on Americans," cynically named "Patriot Act," suddenly the latest "prime suspect" commits suicide without leaving a note or anything, but then the FBI makes claims about how they "got their man" after how many seasons of incompetence in their investigation had passed?

Anyone who doesn't believe that an administration that had the CIA (or perhaps Douglas Feith's "manufactured evidence" Defense Department office) forge and backdate a letter to link Saddam to Osama to help justify the war with Iraq is not capable of using army-produced weapons grade anthrax, out of a Defense Department facility in Fort Detrick, Maryland … anyone who doesn't believe that an administration that forged Niger uranium documents to falsely link Saddam to a purchase that could facilitate a nuclear program that had been shuttered … anyone who doesn't believe that an administration that lied about knowing where WMDs were hidden in Iraq (as Rumsfeld and Cheney claimed), when those weapons didn't exist … well anyone who doesn't believe that such people who believe that they are "masters of the universe" and above the Constitution and the law would be concerned about "collateral damage" in a domestic anthrax attack is naive and incapable of understanding the heart of darkness that lurks within Cheney and his puppet in the White House. (George W. Bush ever in need of finding ways to prove his manhood through being indifferent to the deaths of others.)

BuzzFlash was around, as we have said many a time, since May of 2000.

We reported on the suspicious domestic terrorism anthrax attacks when they occurred, and how odd it appeared that the Bush Administration never appeared concerned about domestic terrorism, even after the attacks. In fact, as Ron Suskind's book reports, the Bush Administration pushed ABC News and others to link the anthrax attacks to Saddam Hussein. Suskind reveals much more, including that the WH rejected overtures from Iran to help clamp down on Al Qaeda, who is no friend to them (being a Shiite vs. Sunni match up).

The best analysis on the highly questionable "resolution" of the multi-year Keystone Cops FBI investigation (by design BuzzFlash believes -- how can the Bush Administration investigate itself; it couldn't in the Valerie Plame outing or the Katrina failure, because Bush would have had to find himself guilty) is coming from Glenn Greenwald at Salon.com. Greenwald is taking the Ivins suicide and anthrax attacks on with a sense of detail and passion that is unmatched on the Net or in the corporate press.

But BuzzFlash was online when it happened, and we took note of how ineptly the FBI handled the case of domestic terrorism that not only resulted in the deaths of people, but was aimed at senior Democratic senators (and some "liberal" members of the press). There was something worrisome about an anthrax attack that emanated from a Department of Defense facility -- and there still is.

Just a few days ago, it was the anniversary of Bush receiving a briefing in August of 2001 that bin Laden was determined to hijack planes in the United States. Bush blew it off. He told a CIA briefer at his Crawford ranch who tried to tell him about terrorist threats that the guy had covered his ass and could leave Bush's Hollywood set "regular guy" vacation retreat and leave Bush alone.

9/11 happened on Bush's watch, even though he was warned. We pointed out at the time that the least Bush and Rice could have done was raise a security alert and order airports to take special precautions to prevent hijackings, but they did nothing -- absolutely nothing.

One of the most tragic failings of the corporate press was that when confronted with the August briefing and other warnings of Al Qaeda preparing to launch attacks on U.S. soil prior to 9/11 -- including the pleading of Robert Clarke -- Rice and Bush claimed that if they had been warned of intended efforts to fly planes into buildings that they would have taken precautions. The White House "press corps" stenographers nodded and told us that this excuse made sense.

But we pointed out then, so many years ago, that it made no sense whatsoever. The way to try and prevent airplane hijackings that end up in suicide attacks on buildings is the same way you prevent hijackings in general: you stop them at the airport. You can't construct magic shields around buildings. So Bush and Rice were let off by the mainstream media, even though their incompetence (or worse) resulted in no action being taken to stop the hijackings, even though the title of the August briefing was about planned hijackings, as Rice was forced to concede in Congressional testimony.

So, anyone who doesn't believe that anthrax attacks that originated with U.S. government-created, bio-warfare weapons grade anthrax, could have been part of an effort to move Congress and the American people toward war for oil and empire, as well as toward a tsarist level of "unitary executive" authority, well anyone who doesn't believe that the anthrax attacks might have been part of Dick Cheney's "dark shadow" planning is ready to audition for Pollyanna.

Oh, and did we mention the recent Seymour Hersh revelation that Cheney and some White House staff members recently spent some time brainstorming how to provoke Iran into war, including "false flag" operations? We wrote about that in a recent BuzzFlash editor's blog.

We don't generally get into conspiracy theories, because by their very nature they are theories for which factual evidence doesn't exist. If the corroborating details are there, then it isn't a theory; it's fact.

Saying the WH, particularly Cheney, were likely behind the anthrax attacks may still fall into the category of conspiracy theory. But if I were a betting man, I think that you can probably safely move that conspiracy theory into the column of fact.

f I Were a Betting Man, I'd Wager that Cheney Was Behind the Anthrax Attacks | | AlterNet

Pelosi says she “hasn’t read” Articles of Impeachment!

Pelosi is an idiot and i hope Cindy Sheehan cleans her clock in Nov.  She hasn't even read the articles of impeachment that Kucinish brought to the house floor!  She is criminally negligent.  She should be fired.
Crooks and Liars » Pelosi says she “hasn’t read” Articles of Impeachment!

EXXON John McCain

Video of Exxon John:

Crooks and Liars » EXXON John McCain

McSames job killing policies

("W)e learned one of McCain’s fundraisers lobbied for the Colombian government, pushing an anti-worker trade deal that McCain supports (despite the fact that dozens of union members are killed every month)."

"McCain top adviser, Randy Altschuler, is the founder of OfficeTiger, a company based in Chennai, India. OfficeTiger’s mission was to convince U.S. companies to outsource jobs to India-and it seems Altschuler has been quite successful in shipping out U.S. jobs."

German company DHL in Ohio ready to shut down operations.
“Never before have so many people been abandoned at once,” said (Ohio resident Mary) Houghtaling, who runs a local hospice. “It is inconceivable to think about losing 10,000 jobs in the first wave, and the estimates run in the 30,000 range as the wave continues.”
"Rick Davis, previously worked as a lobbyist for the German group, Deutsche Post World Net, and was paid $185,000 to help engineer the 2003 deal, plus another $405,000 for other work."

"…to his work nixing the Boeing deal with the Air Force that may cost jobs in 40 states, but has benefited his lobbyist/campaigners:"

The separation of oil and state.

Oil Change USA


Dear Shelley,

They're calling it the Energy Election.  For the first time, energy issues are polling at the top of Americans' concerns.  For all of you who believe in a Separation of Oil and State - now is the time to really turn up the heat.

That's why we've launched Oil Change USA, our new advocacy organization that will allow us to confront oily politicians without pulling any punches.

Let's take John McCain.  Prior to running for President, he had taken about $22,000 from Big Oil since 2000.  He opposed offshore drilling.  He helped author some weak but significant climate change legislation.

Now all of a sudden he's a champion of offshore drilling, and pretty much every other issue Big Oil cares about.  Could it have something to do with his recent receipt of $1 million from Big Oil? 

It's a mystery (sort of). And you can help us solve it.

We need your help to get the word out and to counter Big Oil's influence. We need to engage politicians directly when they are most vulnerable - during campaigns.

Send our Oil Mystery flash video to your friends, sign the Separation of Oil and State pledge, and then have some fun by printing up Oil Dollars - complete with your representative's picture.

These oil dollars are suitable for printing and, shall we say, creative distribution… ;-)

Please also consider making a donation to Oil Change USA today.  More than ever before, we need your support to spread the message of a Separation of Oil and State.

Yours for solar, wind, and tire gauges,

Steve Kretzmann
Oil Change