Friday, March 9, 2007

The Return of PinkerCorn

More Bloggingheads.tv with Jim Pinkerton and me. It's up now. What do we discuss? The Libby conviction. I explain how the system worked. And Pinkerton agrees. He then recounts his own brush with the Iran-contra scandal and the lesson is, tell the feds the truth. He's a conservative who believes Libby did wrong and does not deserve a pardon. We then cover the Democrats' dilemma in Iraq. I raise heartfelt questions about the tug-of-war between doing the politically wise thing and doing the moral thing. Pinkerton hails the Dems' savvy in trying to push Bush to end the war rather than pushing to end the war themselves. He cites the new film, 300 to prove his point. I'm not sure I followed that part of the conversation. (I'm spotty on my ancient Spartan history.) But it did make me want to see the movie. On to the next GOP scandal: the fired--and really pissed-off--US attorneys. Finally--in the knuckleball segment--we discuss Pinkerton's obsession with space (I mean out there, not feng shui), in particular the news (harrowing or encouraging, depending on your perspective) that China has vowed to place a human (Chinese human, that is) on the moon by 2022. Go, China, go! Pinkerton exclaims. Why? He wants off Planet Earth before we nuke it or pollute it to death. And if he has to follow the Chinese in an interstellar lifeboat, that's fine by him. I am, of course, unfairly characterizing his position. To hear it from the source, click here. My only regret: we weren't able to talk about Newt Gingrich's confession and Republican family values (see the item below) because the news hadn't yet broken. And may the force be with you.

Posted by David Corn at March 9, 2007 11:33 AM

97 comments:

Robert S said...

Well, then Jim Pinkerton agrees in some part with Stephen Hawking who also believes mankind must expand off this planet. Perhaps we had better leave W. Bush behind, however, we don't want to risk the Interstellar Overlord Priests needing to fumigate the entire neighborhood...

Saladin said...

"Fumigate." Gerald, I LIKE it! Very clever!
Robert, I don't want to leave earth, I really like it here, can't we just send the psycho crowd to Mars or something? We could tell them that Jesus is waiting with gobs of oil, they'll be packing in no time!

Gerald said...

Praying Each Day: March 9

Robert S said...

Have You Seen the Stars Tonight - Paul Kantner

Have you seen the stars tonight?
Would you like to go up on A-deck and look at them with me?
Have you seen the stars tonight?
Would you like to go up for a stroll and keep me company?

Did you know
We could go
We are free
Any place
You can think of
We can be

Have you seen the stars tonight?
Have you looked at all of the galaxy of stars?

*********************

Amerikkka hates her crazies and you gotta let go, you know...

***********************

Ah, Saladin, who gets to chose who is/is not amongst the psychos...

Gerald said...

Moms on the Run

Ori Munson is suited up in running clothes, watching the clock. Soon, she’ll strap her drowsy three-year-old into a red jogging stroller – and be off, taking her daily four-mile jog to her daughter Iris’ school.

Munson is one of many stay-at-home moms who are part of Mothers Across America, a New York-based running group that aims to combat maternal depression. They encourage isolated, harried mothers all over the city to suit up and lace up, and literally run around town to pick up their children from school.

Munson uses the trip to carve out a bit of time for herself.

Says her daughter Iris, “I like to run because my mom and me can do races together on the sidewalk to school.”

No matter the activity, “being” with loved ones – really being with them – accomplishes more than just “doing.”

My wife Anna earned money at women’s work. (Tobit 2:11)

God, remind us that stay-at-home moms need adult companionship, mental stimulation, exercise and help with child-care and housework.

Gerald said...

Take a Guess

What is it that walks with four legs in the morning, with two legs at midday, and with three legs when the sun has gone down?

According to Greek mythology, the Sphinx asked Oedipus this famous riddle while he was traveling to Thebes. Oedipus gave the right answer: a human being – who crawls on all fours as a baby, walks upright on two legs in middle age, but needs a cane in old age.

Phil Cousineau, author of Riddle Me This, says that riddles, also called enigmas, conundrums, and teasers, “are simply ingenious questions in search of clever answers.”

Popular throughout history in many countries, in today’s society they are generally left to children.

That’s too bad, because, as Aristotle said, reaching “the solution is an act of learning.”

Use your imagination and intelligence creatively. You’ll have fun along the way.

The Lord created human beings out of earth… and a mind for thinking He gave them. He filled them with knowledge and understanding. (Sirach 17:1, 6-7)

Holy Spirit, guide me in using all the gifts of body, mind and soul with which You have blessed me.

Robert S said...

As I was going to St. Ives...

Saladin said...

Psycho, 1. everyone hoping and praying for Armageddon and willing to sacrifice all of humanity to bring it about.
2. Anyone who advocates war for oil reserves or a single govt. hegemony.

Those were the two categories I had in mind!

Gerald said...

Moved By God’s Guidance and Grace

God’s grace can “transform anyone into anything, from a murderer to a monk, or a marketer into a published author at the ripe old age of 72. Grace is the key. It can unlock the door of any prison,” writes Paul Everett.

In his twenties, Everett felt spiritually restless. A friend nudged him into the ministry.

After decades Everett went on retreat to a monastery where he met Brother Jim.

Brother Jim had grown up horribly abused. He married, but at age 20, thinking that his wife, like everyone else in his life, would leave him, he murdered her. He served 20 years in prison and, Everett notes, with God’s grace got “through the guilt and the horror…and into the holy light of forgiveness.”

Everett found new purpose as the monk’s biographer and wrote The Prisoner: An Invitation to Hope.
God’s transforming grace changes everyone who lets it.

The grace of God and the free gift in the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abounded for the many.…The free gift following many trespasses brings justification. (Romans 5:15,16)

Drench us with Your grace, Blessed Trinity.

Gerald said...

Make the Most of Mistakes

Cicero, the Roman statesman, orator and philosopher, developed a list of six major mistakes that people often make during the course of their lives:

The delusion that personal gain is made by crushing others.

The tendency to worry about things that cannot be changed or corrected.

Insisting that a thing is impossible because we cannot accomplish it.

Refusing to set aside trivial preferences.

Neglecting development and refinement of the mind, and not acquiring the habit of reading and studying.

Attempting to compel others to believe and live as we do.

Whatever mistakes we make, let’s recognize them, admit them and learn from them. Then, even failures won’t be wasted.

The law of the Lord is perfect…true and righteous…sweeter also than honey. (Psalm 19:7,9,10)

Let my faults and weaknesses turn into good through Your mercy and my efforts, Spirit of Knowledge.

LET US ADOPT SHALOM AS THE ANSWER FOR ALL OUR QUESTIONS AND PROBLEMS! GOD WANTS FOR US TO SHARE IN ALL HIS GIFTS THAT HE HAS GIVEN US. WE ARE IN IT TOGETHER. TOGETHER WE STAND AND DIVIDED WE FALL. WAR DIVIDES US AND WE ARE ON A FREE FALL INTO HELL.

David B. Benson said...

I met a man with seven wives...

Robert S said...

Each of the wives had seven sacks...

David B. Benson said...

In each sack were seven cats...

capt said...

"In the general course of human nature, a power over man's substance amounts to a power over his will." -- Alexander Hamilton

=
"We meet," it said, "in the midst of a nation brought to the verge of moral, political and material ruin....Corruption dominates the ballot box, the[state] legislatures and the Congress and touches even the bench.....The newspapers are largely subsidized or muzzled, public opinion silenced....The fruits of the toil of millions are boldly stolen to build up colossal fortunes for a few." - The founding convention of the People's Party - better known as the "Populists" (1892).

=
"Abolish plutocracy if you would abolish poverty." Rutherford Birchard Hayes (1877-1881) - 19th President of the United States

=
"All experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for thir future security." : The Declaration of Independence (1776)

===

Thanks ICH Newsletter!

capt said...

Israeli army 'used human shields'



An Israeli human rights group has accused Israel's army of using two young Palestinians as human shields during a recent raid in the West Bank.

The B'Tselem group said it had testimony from a 15-year-old boy, his 24-year-old cousin and also an 11-year-old girl.

They said that soldiers had forced them to enter houses ahead of the troops during the raid in Nablus.

The use of human shields is illegal under Israeli and international law.

The Israeli defence force says it is investigating the allegations.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Well if the IDF is investigating itself I am sure the outcome will favor their point of view. The best any "self investigation" of any military, governmental or law enforcement institution will yield is some scapegoat.


capt

Saladin said...

The Israeli Army, the most moral army in the world, so says Israel. God save us from the most wicked army in the world.

capt said...

WMR



Another Washington Post outrage. Longtime journalists, government officials, and politicians are increasingly bemoaning the fact that the Washington Post, the one-time paper of record in Washington, DC, has become a virtual propaganda arm of the Bush administration and the neo-conservative wings of both major political parties. It is a fact that one retired editor of the Post has stated personally to this editor that WMR is covering the sort of hard-hitting stories that the Post used to delve into. But no more.

It took a former Washington Post reporter named Denis Collins, who just also happened to be a member of the Scooter Libby jury, to ask the question his former employer should have been asking, "It was said a number of times, 'What are we doing with this guy [Libby] here? Where's Rove, where's you know, where are these other guys?' We're not saying that we didn't think Mr. Libby was guilty of the things we found him guilty of but that it seemed like he was to put it in Mr. Wells' [Libby's lawyer] point, he was the fall guy."

The answer to "Where's Rove?" was settled last May when the White House and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales turned the American justice system on its head by pressuring the special prosecutor to scotch a sealed indictment of Rove brought by the grand jury. Rove walked, Cheney remains unscathed, and Rove is now preparing for George W. Bush's legacy by staffing an assessment on that legacy if Bush pardons Libby.

Yesterday, the Washington Post on ce again showed its true colors when GOP and neocon hack Howard Kurtz wrote about the case of imprisoned online journalist Josh Wolf, jailed for refusing to turn over to a grand jury video footage he shot of an anti-Group of Eight demonstration in San Francisco. Kurtz first questions whether Wolf is a journalist (when, in fact, the question should be whether Kurtz, married to a GOP political strategist, is a journalist?).

Kurtz then quotes University of California Los Angeles law professor Eugene Volokh, of all people, about whether Wolf has a right to confidentiality. Volokh is an ardent neocon blogger (his blog is called "The Volokh Conspiracy") who is uniquely unqualified to comment on professional journalism issues. In any case, it is not in the pages of the Washington Post where one would want to read about the definition of a journalist. There are not enough there to make such a qualified determination.


More HERE

Saladin said...

"Legislators have strong vested interests that lead them to mistake what is good for them with what is good for the country."

- Bradley A. Smith

Saladin said...

Top Gun aircraft are seized from US museums in ‘paranoia’ raids
Tom Baldwin in Washington

Federal US agents have seized disabled F14 fighter jets from museums in California because of fears that parts would be sold to Iran.

The raids reflect the nervousness that is driving policy towards the Islamic republic at a time when the US has stationed two aircraft carriers in the Gulf and is alleging that Iranian Revolutionary Guards are aiding attacks on its soldiers in Iraq. One European diplomat described the raids as evidence of American paranoia.

The F14 Tomcat fighters, made famous by the film Top Gun,had been sawn in half and welded together before being sold by the Ventura naval base as scrap metal in 2005 for as little as $2,000 (£1,000) apiece. Three ended up in museums at Chino Airport, while a fourth was acquired as a prop by producers of the TV show JAG.

Although there is no evidence that the aircraft had been plundered for parts, US customs conducted a 17-month operation to stop any components from entering the black market. Iran’s ageing squadron of F14s dates to before the 1979 Revolution and Tehran has become increasingly desperate to find spare parts despite a US arms embargo against it.

The Pentagon has said repeatedly that Iran’s military could seek to wreck the world’s economy by closing the Strait of Hormuz through which much of the West’s oil supplies are shipped.

Admiral Michael McConell has cited Iran’s ballistic missiles and naval power as elements of a conventional military force, as well as its terrorist surrogates such as Hezbollah, that threaten oil-rich Gulf states and challenge US interests. “It seeks a capacity to disrupt the operations and reinforcement of US forces based in the region — potentially intimidating regional allies into withholding support for US policy — and raising the political, financial and human costs to the US and our allies of our presence in Iraq.” Iran said this week it would attend an international conference with the US and other UN Security Council members, including Britain, on the future of Iraq in Baghdad tomorrow.

Manouchehr Mottaki, the Iranian Foreign Minister, said that a junior minister would lead the country’s delegation at the talks, its first public encounter with the US since 2004.

Sean McCormack, the US State Department spokesman, has refused to rule out the possibility of face-to-face negotiations. He said that the US would use any contact with the Iranians to raise the subject of their support for Shia militias, which have killed US troops. “And if that means having a discussion with the Iranian representative in the context of this meeting, yeah, we’re going to take that opportunity.”

A British diplomatic source said that while the sight of Iran and the US around the same table would have an important symbolic value, “we are under no illusions that this weekend will produce a silver bullet”. All sides have dismissed speculation that the talks will help to resolve the stand-off over Iran’s nuclear programme.
==============
Maybe they should get those carriers out of Iran's back yard before someone starts selling parts off them! Just when you thought things couldn't get more bizarre we get this. They have said, straight up, it's the oil, period.
Robert, would they qualify as members of the psycho crowd? ;-)

Saladin said...

Larger CIA and DoD Privatization Scandal Emerging from Walter Reed, US Attorneys Firing
Daily Kos

In each case, the companies under investigation have links to prominent GOP figures, including Vice President Dick Cheney, former Vice President Dan Quayle, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, and several Republican Congressmen indicted for corruption involving kickbacks from defense contractors. The Republican Congressional Campaign Committee (RCCC) has also received substantial contributions from conservative fund managers running Cerberus, a virtually unregulated $30 billion hedge fund, which owns the second largest bank in Israel.
============
Why am I not surprised?

Saladin said...

Libby set to win pardon and escape jail term
Telegraph.co.uk

By Toby Harnden in Washington
Last Updated: 1:43am GMT 09/03/2007

# Audio: Prison or pardon for Libby?
# Toby Harnden: Libby will not go to jail

A White House official said last night that there was a "strong expectation" that President George W Bush would pardon Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the disgraced aide.

Libby set to win pardon and escape jail term : Lewis 'Scooter' Libby leaves the courthouse with his lawyers
Lewis 'Scooter' Libby leaves the courthouse with his lawyers

The former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney was found guilty of perjury and obstruction of justice on Tuesday in a case linked to the unmasking of a covert CIA operative. If the conviction is upheld, he is expected to be jailed for two years.

But an administration official said that it was highly unlikely that Libby would go to prison. "There's a lot of anger about the way Libby has been treated," he said.

"There's a strong expectation that if it comes to it, then the president will pardon him."

The official said that advisers to Mr Bush believed that Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor who charged Libby, had pursued a "political vendetta" against the White House and that no one had committed any crime.
advertisement

"I don't think anything will happen yet, though. There's an appeal to come and perhaps Libby will get off then."

Libby is due to be sentenced in June but his defense team has said it will press for a retrial and, if that is denied, will appeal against his conviction. It could be close to the end of Mr Bush's second term in January 2009 before a jail sentence would begin.
=============
Gee, another non-surprise.

capt said...

Have you seen the new book title from Ted Kennedy?

Back on Track

Sure - all better now?

Back on which track? Typical partisan piffle.

And the song remains the same.



capt

capt said...

The militarization of outer space



Outer space begins where Earth's atmosphere ends, some 100 kilometers above the globe's surface. The United States wants the ability to militarize outer space to sustain its world dominance. The Pentagon can already monitor the world from space. Now it seeks to develop and deploy military systems in space that allow the US to strike with great force anywhere on Earth in less than an hour.

The Defense Department's Global Strike Integration policy seeks to "gain and maintain both global and theater space superiority and deliver tailored, integrated, full-spectrum space support to the theater commander, while maintaining a robust defensive global counter-space posture".

This means occupying space with surveillance and reconnaissance satellites and anti-satellites, ballistic missiles, missile or kinetic interceptors, and other advanced technology weapons to assist US land, sea and air forces in maintaining military hegemony throughout the world. It also means preventing any other country, by force if necessary, from using space for similar purposes, including self-defense.

Aside from the satellites, which have become key to the Pentagon's battle plans, most of the other technology is in the research and development stage or awaiting deployment decisions from the White House that are complicated by political complexities.

The George W Bush administration - especially the Defense Department and particularly the US Air Force (USAF) - is anxious to launch a full-scale militarization of space, regardless of its enormous expense and the fact that it will inspire worldwide condemnation, generate a dangerous arms race in outer space, and undoubtedly enhance prospects for major wars in this century.

The rightists and neo-conservatives are not unaware of these potential consequences but they are confident the US will prevail because of its overwhelming power. In effect, "It's worth the price."

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

"Outer" Space has been an issue ever since ICBM's. The military and defense satellites and spy whatnot have been in space for decades. Makes me wonder why all the fuss? Worth what price? What are we doing that is all that different than it has been since the sixties? The Chinese satellite killer is more aggressive but I bet we have something similar and had it for some years. So why all this now? More kabuki theater as bigger distraction from what?



capt

capt said...

Brad Delp, Lead Singer of Boston, Dies at 55




ATKINSON, N.H. (March 9) - Brad Delp, the lead singer for the band Boston, was found dead Friday in his home in southern New Hampshire. He was 55.

Atkinson police responded to a call for help at 1:20 p.m. and found Delp dead. Police Lt. William Baldwin said in a statement the death was "untimely" and that there was no indication of foul play.

Delp apparently was alone at the time of his death, Baldwin said.

The cause of his death remained under investigation by the Atkinson police and the New Hampshire Medical Examiner's office. Police said an incident report would not be available until Monday.

Delp sang vocals on Boston's 1976 hits "More than a Feeling" and "Longtime." He also sang on Boston's most recent album, "Corporate America," released in 2002

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

He had a set of pipes. Rest in peace.



capt

capt said...

Boston More Than A Feeling

I looked out this morning and the sun was gone
Turned on some music to start my day
I lost myself in a familiar song
I closed my eyes and I slipped away

Its more than a feeling, when I hear that old song they used to play (more than a feeling)
I begin dreaming (more than a feeling)
till I see Marianne walk away
I see my Marianne walkin away

So many people have come and gone
Their faces fade as the years go by
Yet I still recall as I wander on
As clear as the sun in the summer sky

Its more than a feeling, when I hear that old song they used to play (more than a feeling)
I begin dreaming (more than a feeling)
till I see Marianne walk away
I see my Marianne walkin away

When I'm tired and thinking cold
I hide in my music, forget the day
And dream of a girl I used to know
I closed my eyes and she slipped away
She slipped away. she slipped away.

Its more than a feeling, when I hear that old song they used to play (more than a feeling)
I begin dreaming (more than a feeling)
till I see Marianne walk away
I see my Marianne walkin away

(scholz)

capt said...

Bob Geiger Cartoon Collection!

Always good!



capt

Saladin said...

OH MAN, THAT SUCKS! Boston was my very first concert WAYYYY back in 1978? I think? God they were good. Rest in peace Brad.

capt said...

Container Holding Uranium Found At Pawn Shop



OCALA, Fla. -- A container believed to be holding 1 ounce of uranium yellow cake was recovered at a Central Florida pawn shop on Thursday, according to authorities.

Marion County Fire Rescue officials retrieved the container with the uranium yellow cake, which is a processed form of uranium, from Gold Mine Pawn in Belleview after being called in regards to a suspicious container.

The container was a lead cylinder with markings that the contents were radioactive, according to Marion County officials.

The owner of the pawnshop said the container was kept in a box that had been in storage since being purchased from an out-of-town estate sale about 20 years ago.

Authorities said that there is no indication of any criminal intent, and state authorities will be checking into the estate sale and persons who owned the property.

The Marion County Sheriff's Office said that it will not file any charges and it has closed its investigation into the incident.

Marion County Fire Hazardous Materials Team took possession of the container and will turn it over to the Department of Health, Bureau of Radiation Control, who will dispose of the contents.

Watch Local 6 News for more on this story.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Careful the color of the cake is the key.



capt

capt said...

"The trouble with most folks isn't so much their ignorance, as knowing so many things that ain't so." : Josh Billings - [Henry Wheeler Shaw] (1818-1885) American humorist and lecturer

=
"Our government has kept us in a perpetual state of fear -­ kept us in a continuous stampede of patriotic fervour ­- with the cry of grave national emergency. Always, there has been some terrible evil at home, or some monstrous foreign power that was going to gobble us up if we did not blindly rally behind it.": General Douglas MacArthur - (1880-1964) WWII Supreme Allied Commander of the Southwest Pacific, Supreme United Nations Commander 1957

=
"What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could not understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it: Milton Mayer - Excerpt from pages 166-73 of "They Thought They Were Free" First published in 1955
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article11845.htm

===

What's On ICHBlog TV?
http://www.ichblog.eu/component/option,com_seyret/Itemid,63/

===

Thanks ICH Newsletter!

capt said...

What happened to the Padilla interrogation videos?



Of course, even if administration's patently unbelievable claim were true -- namely, that it did "lose" the video of its interrogation of this Extremely Dangerous International Terrorist -- that would, by itself, evidence a reckless ineptitude with American national security so grave that it ought to be a scandal by itself. But the likelihood that the key interrogation video with regard to Padilla's torture claims was simply "lost" is virtually non-existent. Destruction of relevant evidence in any litigation is grounds for dismissal of the case (or defense) of the party engaged in that behavior.

But where, as here, the issues extend far beyond the singular proceeding itself -- we are talking about claims by a U.S. citizen that he was tortured by his own government -- destruction of evidence of this sort would be obstruction of justice of the most serious magnitude. This merits much, much more attention.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

I am certain the government really did lose the video's and tapes, the government wouldn't lie - not about the important stuff.



capt

Saladin said...

The govt.'s sure are careless with all those videos! Just as careless as the BBC. When you don't have the real thing, you can just make one up, ala Fatty Bin Laden!

capt said...

Blind faith in the Bush administration



To this day, we have no idea how the administration used its illegal warrantless eavesdroppoing powers to spy on the conversations of Americans for five years, in total secrecy, because there does not seem to be much of a desire to know. After all, they have assured us that they were using these secret eavesdroppoing powers only against Terrorists and only to protect us, that they created all kinds of great and elaborate safeguards to protect us, and that we have nothing to worry about.

That mentality was captured perfectly by former NSA Director and current Director of the CIA Gen. Michael Hayden, when asked in January, 2006 how American can trust that the eavesdropping powers were not being abused given that they were exercising them in secret and with no oversight. Hayden's response: We should just trust them, because they are Good:

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

The reason oversight has always been so important is because of the weakness in all human beings to abuse power. No power should ever exist without proper oversight, none.



capt

capt said...

Doglike Fidelity – The Cornerstone of the Cult of Bush



The power of Commander-in-Chief, President Bush argues, places Congress within a subservient role. It is fine for members to disagree with him, but they'd better not touch the funding for the war in Iraq. Democrats who dare to suggest that they will set conditions on war funding are accused of micromanaging the war, or of invading the President's constitutional powers.

In another domain, army First Lieutenant Watada is set to be court-marshaled again, after a mistrial, for failing to report for duty in Iraq. He has claimed that the war in Iraq is immoral, and violates the U.S. Constitution, the War Powers Act, the U.N. Charter, and the Nuremberg Principles, which bar "wars of aggression." Although he has many supporters, his stand is reviled as a threat to unquestioned obedience by many commentators of the authoritarian type.

There is a common thread tying the debates in Congress to the court-martial of Watada. In both cases, individuals are trying to shake off the trance that has existed in this country since 9-11 gave the Bush Administration carte blanche to pursue any aggressive foreign policies he desired. This trance has elements of a cult to it: even members of Congress and the media, whose job it is to question a president and his policies, became enthralled by the militaristic aura of the Commander-in-Chief. Like members of cults, they continued to be loyal and obedient long after it became apparent that the leader was not making sound or well-reasoned decisions.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Bow wow, eh?



capt

capt said...

Pastor Strangelove



Texan John Hagee may not have his "perfect red heifer" yet. But he does have a huge following, the ear of the White House -- and a theory that an invasion of Iran was foretold in the Book of Esther.


On Purim, the Jewish holiday that celebrates the day Queen Esther saved the Jews from annihilation, Trinity Broadcasting Network’s flagship talk show, Praise the Lord, featured an appearance by Rabbi Daniel Lapin. A politically conservative Orthodox rabbi, Lapin is best known for crusading with the Christian right against "anti-religion bigotry" and, more recently, for his close association with the convicted super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff. But he was not invited to a nationwide telecast to discuss such topics as the trumped-up war against religion or the better nature of his fallen friend. He had been asked to explain the significance of Purim to Christians, and particularly how the Old Testament’s Book of Esther "serves as a roadmap to reality," which pinpoints where the next world "hot spot" will be.

That soon-to-be-flaming location is where the Book of Esther was set: namely Persia, or in modern parlance, Iran.

Seated beside Lapin in the ornately gilded Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) studio was Pastor John Hagee, the author of an incendiary new book purporting to show that the Bible predicts a military confrontation with Iran. By then, Hagee’s book, Jerusalem Countdown, had sold nearly 500,000 copies. It had occupied the No. 1 position on the Wal-Mart inspirational best-seller list, showed up on Wal-Mart’s list of top 10 best sellers for seven weeks, and made the USA Today top 50 best-seller list for six weeks.

Hagee, who serves as head pastor of the 18,000-member Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, hosts his own television program that is seen twice a day on TBN. He argues that the United States must join Israel in a pre-emptive military strike against Iran to fulfill God’s plan for both Israel and the West. Shortly after the release of his book last January, he launched Christians United for Israel (CUFI), a lobbying organization intended, he says, to be a Christian version of the powerful American Israel Public Affairs Committee. With CUFI, which Hagee has said will cause a "political earthquake," the televangelist aims to put the political organizing muscle of the conservative evangelical movement behind his grand plan for a biblically prophesied end-time confrontation with Iran, which will lead to the Rapture, Tribulation, and Second Coming of Christ.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

"Get your theocracy off of my democracy!"



capt

capt said...

The Coulter-Matthews-Dowd continuum





The emerging conventional wisdom about the 2008 presidential election is that Iraq will be a dominant and perhaps decisive issue and, in part as a result of that assumption, the Democratic nominee -- whoever that may be -- will have a significant advantage over his or her Republican counterpart.

A historically strong Democratic primary field, coupled with a truly bizarre Republican field -- the top three contenders are all likely to alienate large portions of the conservative base and of moderate and independent voters -- justifiably contributes to the perception that Democrats have an edge. (Writing for The American Prospect, Matthew Yglesias has provided what may be the definitive big-picture explanation of the flaws of the leading Republican candidates.) Not to mention the fact that each week seems to bring further evidence that John Kerry's famous description of the GOP as "the most crooked, you know, lying group of people I've ever seen" was, if anything, too kind.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

MSM shameful as always.



capt

capt said...

Cheney's still dangerous



ONE BUMPER STICKER proposes: Impeach Cheney First.

Vice President Dick Cheney has now suffered back-to-back humiliations, with the conviction of his former chief of staff, I. Lewis Libby, and the wresting of key foreign policy decisions by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. But if anything, he is even more dangerous wounded.

The Bush administration keeps handing the opposition party loaded guns, the latest being the clumsy, politically motivated firings of eight US attorneys, a rare oasis of professionalism. These prosecutors are appointed by the president, but, unlike ordinary presidential appointees, they are not normally removed except for cause. In every case, the purpose seems to have been either to punish a prosecutor who did not capitulate to political pressure or to open up a slot for up-and-coming politicians. All this will now be laid bare in congressional investigations.

In another new case of lawlessness, the Justice Department's own inspector general issued a withering report on how the FBI has issued thousands of "administrative" subpoenas, fishing for information without the knowledge of the target. These are permitted under the Patriot Act, subject to narrow guidelines and special "exigencies," but the FBI has not been following its own internal rules.

With Democrats now in the congressional majority, the administration has lately been running on two tracks. On one track, grown-ups seem to have regained a measure of control. Rice was able to negotiate a long-delayed deal with the North Koreans to limit that nation's nuclear ambitions in exchange for the beginning of normalized relations. The deal has been available for six years. Rice was able to win its approval only by keeping Cheney out of the loop and requesting National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley to take the agreement directly to President Bush.

This weekend's regional diplomatic conference on Iraq, with representatives of the Iranian government sitting with US envoys, also represents a victory of pragmatists over extremists. The US line, dictated by Cheney and former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld, had been that we can't talk directly to Iranians as long as they are pursuing nuclear weapons. That strategy had produced a stalemate, and US threats to bomb Iran -- which mainly frightened the Europeans and our few remaining Middle East allies. Bush has pulled back from that course, and is now willing to try direct diplomacy -- another setback for Cheney.

Yet, at the same time, the contempt for law continues, such as the firing of US attorneys. And Cheney may be down but he is far from out.

After the conviction of Libby for lying about his smear campaign against Valerie Plame Wilson and her husband, Joseph Wilson, prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald declared his investigation over. One juror, Denis Collins, spoke for many Americans when he wondered aloud why Libby was made the fall guy, when he was so clearly doing the bidding of the vice president and his larger campaign to take America to war based on a tissue of lies.

The faked case for war, and Cheney's role, has been partly exposed in the press. The Libby trial provided new details, but still an incomplete picture. All this deserves a full congressional airing.

In our democracy, there are two ways of expunging a lawless leader. The normal way is to vote in the opposition. The exceptional way is via impeachment.

As more details of the serial assaults on the Constitution emerge, one could make a good case that Cheney and Bush deserve impeachment at least as much as Richard Nixon did. Contempt for the rule of law is just what the framers had in mind when they devised impeachment as an extraordinary remedy.

However, most Democrats in Congress conclude that the memory of the Clinton impeachment is too fresh, that an impeachment proceeding would be too divisive and would divert attention from the very serious substance at issue. My bet is that impeachable offenses will emerge from Congressional investigations. What will protect Bush and Cheney from that fate is less the merits of the case than the electoral calendar. It is simply too close to the 2008 election.

So, as with the Iraq war, the stalemate with Iran, the budget mess, and the trade imbalance -- all of which will be left to Bush's successor -- the administration's main hope for saving its own skin is running down the clock. America surely deserves better.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Why impeach? We owe it to the history books of the future, we owe it to the class and character of all Americans, we owe it to ourselves and our children. Right is still right and wrong cannot be tempered by political expedience.

It is truly the fate of the Democratic majority. I predict if no action is taken to impeach then 2008's top dog will be a GOPher. The Democratic party will only confirm (by inaction) what many voters fear - that they don't have the stones to take a principled stand without regard to the politics of the moment.



capt

David B. Benson said...

If Darth Cheney broke the law, he ought to do time...

After a fair trial.

Saladin said...

Crystal Cave of the Giants - Discovery of the Largest Crystals on Earth

All I can say is WOW!!

David B. Benson said...

Saladin --- Them is some rocks!

capt said...

Those crystals are HUGE!


capt

capt said...

A Hidden Twist In The Black Hole Information Paradox



[…]

In the mid 1970s, Stephen Hawking showed that black holes eventually evaporate away in a steady stream of featureless radiation containing no information. But if a black hole has completely evaporated, where has the information about it gone? This long standing question is known as the black hole information paradox.

Now, Professor Braunstein and Dr Pati have ruled out the possibility that information might escape from the black hole but be somehow hidden in correlations between the Hawking radiation and the black hole’s internal state. Braunstein and Pati’s result demonstrates that the black hole information paradox is even more severe than previously believed.

Dr Pati said: "Our result shows that either quantum mechanics or Hawking’s analysis must break down, but it does not choose between these two possibilities."

Professor Braunstein said: "The no-hiding theorem provides new insight into the different laws governing classical and quantum information. It shows that there’s got to be new physics out there."

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

The true strength of science is that science always keeps an open mind and is able to correct previous errors and assumptions.



capt

Saladin said...

Mr. Benson, minerals, not rocks! I think it's selenite. My husband said he is familiar with the discovery, it is a silver mine, he thought it used to be called the Cave of Swords, or something like that.

David B. Benson said...

From my copyright 1947 desk dictionary:

rock. ... 3. Geol. Any solid mineral matter occurring naturally in large quantities; also, a particular mass of it. ...

Saladin said...

Mr. Benson, Rocks are naturally occurring aggregates of minerals or mineraloids and most rocks consist of several mineral species. However, Selenite is a specific mineral, CaSO4-2H2O. Mineral, not rock. Reference Petrology Textbook, Ehlers & Blatt.

O'Reilly said...

Department of Injustice
By PAUL KRUGMAN
For those of us living in the Garden State, the growing scandal over the firing of federal prosecutors immediately brought to mind the subpoenas that Chris Christie, the former Bush “Pioneer” who is now the U.S. attorney for New Jersey, issued two months before the 2006 election — and the way news of the subpoenas was quickly leaked to local news media.

The subpoenas were issued in connection with allegations of corruption on the part of Senator Bob Menendez, a Democrat who seemed to be facing a close race at the time. Those allegations appeared, on their face, to be convoluted and unconvincing, and Mr. Menendez claimed that both the investigation and the leaks were politically motivated.

Mr. Christie’s actions might have been all aboveboard. But given what we’ve learned about the pressure placed on federal prosecutors to pursue dubious investigations of Democrats, Mr. Menendez’s claims of persecution now seem quite plausible.

In fact, it’s becoming clear that the politicization of the Justice Department was a key component of the Bush administration’s attempt to create a permanent Republican lock on power. Bear in mind that if Mr. Menendez had lost, the G.O.P. would still control the Senate.

For now, the nation’s focus is on the eight federal prosecutors fired by Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. In January, Mr. Gonzales told the Senate Judiciary Committee, under oath, that he “would never, ever make a change in a United States attorney for political reasons.” But it’s already clear that he did indeed dismiss all eight prosecutors for political reasons — some because they wouldn’t use their offices to provide electoral help to the G.O.P., and the others probably because they refused to soft-pedal investigations of corrupt Republicans.

In the last few days we’ve also learned that Republican members of Congress called prosecutors to pressure them on politically charged cases, even though doing so seems unethical and possibly illegal.

The bigger scandal, however, almost surely involves prosecutors still in office. The Gonzales Eight were fired because they wouldn’t go along with the Bush administration’s politicization of justice. But statistical evidence suggests that many other prosecutors decided to protect their jobs or further their careers by doing what the administration wanted them to do: harass Democrats while turning a blind eye to Republican malfeasance.

Donald Shields and John Cragan, two professors of communication, have compiled a database of investigations and/or indictments of candidates and elected officials by U.S. attorneys since the Bush administration came to power. Of the 375 cases they identified, 10 involved independents, 67 involved Republicans, and 298 involved Democrats. The main source of this partisan tilt was a huge disparity in investigations of local politicians, in which Democrats were seven times as likely as Republicans to face Justice Department scrutiny.

How can this have been happening without a national uproar? The authors explain: “We believe that this tremendous disparity is politically motivated and it occurs because the local (non-statewide and non-Congressional) investigations occur under the radar of a diligent national press. Each instance is treated by a local beat reporter as an isolated case that is only of local interest.”

And let’s not forget that Karl Rove’s candidates have a history of benefiting from conveniently timed federal investigations. Last year Molly Ivins reminded her readers of a curious pattern during Mr. Rove’s time in Texas: “In election years, there always seemed to be an F.B.I. investigation of some sitting Democrat either announced or leaked to the press. After the election was over, the allegations often vanished.”

Fortunately, Mr. Rove’s smear-and-fear tactics fell short last November. I say fortunately, because without Democrats in control of Congress, able to hold hearings and issue subpoenas, the prosecutor purge would probably have become yet another suppressed Bush-era scandal — a huge abuse of power that somehow never became front-page news.

Before the midterm election, I wrote that what the election was really about could be summed up in two words: subpoena power. Well, the Democrats now have that power, and the hearings on the prosecutor purge look like the shape of things to come.

In the months ahead, we’ll hear a lot about what’s really been going on these past six years. And I predict that we’ll learn about abuses of power that would have made Richard Nixon green with envy.

O'Reilly said...

I am certain the government really did lose the video's and tapes, the government wouldn't lie - not about the important stuff.



capt

3/10/07 4:18 PM

O'Reilly said...

good one capt.

O'Reilly said...

Kathleen, Did you meet Marcy Wheeler on your trip to DC? If so, pray tell.

capt said...





The chairman of the New Mexico Republican Party was quoted Saturday as saying he urged presidential adviser Karl Rove and one of his assistants to fire the state's U.S. attorney. He said later, however, the decision had already been made by the time he talked to Rove.

McClatchy Newspapers reported that Allen Weh said he complained in 2005 about then-U.S. Attorney David Iglesias to a White House liaison who worked for Rove, asking that he be removed, and followed up with Rove personally in late 2006 during a visit to the White House.

"Is anything ever going to happen to that guy?" Weh said he asked Rove at a White House holiday event.

"He's gone," Rove said, according to Weh.

"I probably said something close to 'Hallelujah,'" said Weh.

Weh told The Associated Press later Saturday that "Rove has little or nothing to do with this."

"This is a personnel action, firing an incompetent United States attorney who should have been fired" earlier, Weh told the AP. "He absolutely was a disgrace to the Department of Justice."

He said his conversation at the White House with Rove came "after the fact, after the termination had occurred."

"When I talked to Karl it was at a White House briefing for state party chairmen after a reception the day before," Weh told the AP. "The termination had already occurred."

The GOP party leader made no secret of his dissatisfaction with Iglesias, in part from his failure to indict Democrats in a voter fraud investigation.

"If you're a crook you need to be in jail," he told the AP. "If you're an incompetent government official you should be fired."

The Justice Department has said the dismissal of Iglesias and seven other U.S. attorneys was a personnel matter. White House involvement, Justice said, was limited to approving a list of replacements after the Justice Department made the decision to fire the eight.

The McClatchy story quoted Weh as saying he did not know whether Rove was involved in the firing of Iglesias or merely had been advised of the decision when the two talked at the White House.

"There's nothing we've done that's wrong," Weh told the papers. "It wasn't that Iglesias wasn't looking out for Republicans. He just wasn't doing his job, period."

Neither Rove nor the White House press office responded immediately to e-mails Saturday evening seeking reaction to the McClatchy story.

A White House spokeswoman, Dana Perino, said last week that administration officials were aware of the impending firings and offered no objections. But Rove "wasn't involved in who was going to be fired or hired," she said.

At a speech Thursday in Arkansas, Rove said of the general flap over the firings, "My view is this is unfortunately a very big attempt by some in the Congress to make a political stink about it."

Iglesias has said he felt pressed by Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., and Rep. Heather Wilson, R-N.M., to rush indictments against Democrats before Election Day last November.

Domenici and Wilson acknowledge calling Iglesias, but deny pressuring him.

"Part of the controversy behind this is prosecutorial discretion," Iglesias told the McClatchy papers. "What that means is it's up to the sole discretion of the prosecutor in the case of how to handle the indictment and when to issue it."

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

The fact that this comes right back to Rove is no coincidence.


capt

capt said...

Whoop's the title was missing for the above post:

GOP official wanted U.S. attorney fired


capt

capt said...

The FBI's lawbreaking is tied directly to President Bush



[...]

One of the very few attempts over the last six years from Congress to impose at least some safeguards on the use of radical new executive powers was to require that the FBI report to Congress on the issuance of NSLs, so that Congress could at least know about (and, theoretically, take action in response to) any abuse of these powers. But the minute George Bush got what he wanted -- re-authorization of the Patriot Act -- he proclaimed for all the world to hear that he had the power to violate those provisions and refuse to comply with such safeguards. And now it is revealed that the FBI has, in fact, violated the very provisions which the President proclaimed he could violate. Perhaps someone other than Silent Patriot might want to take note of that connection.

The Bush administration has created vast and permanent data bases to collect and store evidence revealing the private activities of millions of American citizens. When the FBI obtains information essentially in secret -- with no judicial oversight -- that information is stored in those data bases. This is all being done by the executive branch with no safeguards and no oversight, and the little oversight that Congress has required has been defiantly and publicly brushed aside by the President, who sees legal requirements as nothing more than suggestions or options which he will recognize only if he chooses to. That is the constitutional crisis that we have endured under virtually the entire Bush presidency -- the crisis which, for the most part, our mainstream political and media elite have collectively decided not to acknowledge.

The story here is not merely that the FBI is breaking the law and abusing these powers. That has long been predicted and, to some degree, even documented. The story is that the FBI is ignoring the very legal obligations which George Bush vowed were not obligations at all, but mere suggestions to be accepted only if he willed it. It is yet another vivid example proving that the President's ideology of lawlessness exists not merely in theory, but as the governing doctrine under which the executive branch has acted, time and again and as deliberately as possible, in violation of whatever laws it deems inconvenient.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

I hate that GG went to Salon, lucky they have not yet tried to compel me to view an ad to read his posts. That is a show stopper for me.


capt

capt said...

War is the most striking instance of the failure of intelligence to master the problem of human relationships.
~ Harry Elmer Barnes

Thanks antiwar.com!

capt said...

Afghanistan's 'Hard Mission' Slips Away



Canadian lawmakers have written an Afghanistan version of the Iraq Study Group report, reaching a conclusion that the conditions on that original battlefront in the "war on terror" are grave and deteriorating.


The 16-page Canadian Senate report, entitled "Taking a Hard Look at a Hard Mission," foresees a conflict that could drag on for generations and might well fail unless NATO significantly increases its commitment of money and troops.

"It is in our view doubtful that this mission can be accomplished given the limited resources that NATO is currently investing in Afghanistan," said the report by the Standing Committee on National Security and Defence. "The current NATO contingent doesn’t have enough troops to go toe-to-toe with the Taliban."

Former Canadian Ambassador to Afghanistan Chris Alexander told the committee that it would take five generations to "make a difference in Afghanistan," while Land Forces Commander Andrew Leslie estimated that it would take at least two decades to complete the mission.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Too bad we never finished the one before starting the other. This is not due to incompetence or lack of adequate planning.



capt

Saladin said...

Capt, it's due to greed, just like all wars are.

capt said...

There is no calamity greater than lavish desires.
There is no greater guilt than discontentment.
And there is no greater disaster than greed.

~ Lao-tzu (604 BC - 531 BC), The Way of Lao-tzu

capt said...

The main source of our wealth is goodness. The affections and the generous qualities that God admires in a world full of greed.
Alfred A. Montapert

One of the weaknesses of our age is our apparent inability to distinguish our need from our greed.
Author Unknown

We are born brave, trusting and greedy, and most of us remain greedy.
Author Unknown

It is partly to avoid consciousness of greed that we prefer to associate with those who are at least as greedy as we ourselves. Those who consume much less are a reproach.
Charles Horton Cooley

capt said...

The Unthinkable



Can the United States be made safe from nuclear terrorism?


n October, 2005, a radiation sensor at the Port of Colombo, in Sri Lanka, signalled that the contents of an outbound shipping container included radioactive material. The port’s surveillance system, installed with funds from the National Nuclear Security Administration, an agency within the Department of Energy, wasn’t yet in place, so the container was loaded and sent to sea before it could be identified. After American and Sri Lankan inspectors hurriedly checked camera images at the port, they concluded that the suspect crate might be on any one of five ships—two of which were steaming toward New York.

Sri Lanka is a locus of guerrilla war and arms smuggling. It is not far from Pakistan, which possesses nuclear arms, is a haven for Al Qaeda, and has a poor record of nuclear security. The radiation-emitting container presented at least the theoretical danger of a "pariah ship," Vayl Oxford, the director of the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, which is part of the Department of Homeland Security, said. It seemed plausible, if unlikely, that Al Qaeda or rogue Pakistani generals might load a bomb onto a cargo vessel. Within days, American satellites located the five suspect ships and intelligence analysts scrutinized their manifests; a team at the National Security Council took charge. One ship, it learned, was bound for Canada, and another for Hamburg, Germany. The White House decided to call in its atomic-bomb squad, known as NEST, the Nuclear Emergency Support Team—scientists who are trained to search for nuclear weapons. One team flew to Canada and a second to Europe, where it intercepted one of the ships at sea before it could reach Hamburg. They found nothing.

The United States Coast Guard stopped the two New York-bound ships in territorial waters, about ten miles offshore; from that distance, if there was a nuclear weapon on board a detonation would cause relatively little harm. Scientists boarded the vessels, shouldering diagnostic equipment, but these ships, too, turned out to be clean; as it happened, the offending vessel was on an Asian route, and its cargo was scrap metal mixed with radioactive materials that had been dumped improperly. The entire episode, which was not disclosed to the public, lasted about two weeks.

This sometimes nerve-racking exercise resulted in no more than the disposal of some radioactive waste. It was also the first major defensive maneuver triggered by a shield that the United States is attempting to build as a defense against a clandestine nuclear attack. The idea, in essence, is to envelop the country in rings of radiation detectors and connect these sensors to military and police command centers, which would then respond to unexplained movements of nuclear material. The project, comparable in ambition to ballistic-missile defense, is the first of its kind in the atomic age. The plan has already attracted criticism from some scientists and defense strategists, primarily because, as with missile defense, the project promises to be expensive and would require leaps of ingenuity to overcome technical problems presented by the laws of physics.

More HERE

capt said...

Florida Plan Gives Citizens Real Paper Ballots



North Florida. Retired Navy aviator and veteran, Bill Faulkner, MBA, may have done the impossible. He devised a plan to return believable elections to Florida by turning optical scan forms into the ballot of record, to be counted by citizens in public areas where all can view the process taking place. This radical departure from the maze of today’s computerized voting harkens back to over 100 years of U.S elections history. But first, a little background.

We all want to vote and know that our votes are counted properly and that the true winner of any election won fair and square. Since 2000, it’s become virtually impossible to know what happens to our votes if we’re voting on computerized voting machines (touch screens) or on paper ballots totaled by the other computerized voting machine, optical scan readers. Lately we’re hearing terms like paper trails and verified ballots. These are just slightly more sensible than undervotes and overvotes. Casting aside bureaucratic jargon and the explanations of hired gun experts, we know this much.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

We had very few problems using paper and ink ballots in our last few elections (in NM). The nefarious SOB's (from either side) can still steal votes but I felt like my vote mattered because - at minimum - there was a paper trail. It made my vote count far more than a "touch-screen" selection.



capt

capt said...

Quantum Spookiness Spans the Canary Islands



DENVER — The reach of the spooky quantum link called entanglement keeps getting longer. A team has transmitted entangled photons some 144 kilometers (89 miles) between La Palma and Tenerife, two of Spain's Canary Islands off the coast of Morocco. Physicist Anton Zeilinger of the University of Vienna, the group's leader, presented the results to his colleagues this week at the American Physical Society conference.

The distance achieved is 10 times farther than entangled photons have ever flown through the air. When two photons or other particles are in this state, what happens to one determines the fate of the other, no matter how far apart they are. Zeilinger compares the phenomenon with throwing a pair of dice that land on matching numbers every time.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

One for us nerds! HA!



capt

kathleen said...

Missed watching my usual hour and half of the MSM on Sunday morning. Meet the Press, This Week and Matthews. I heard Corn was on Stephanapolous and gave George Will a run for his money. You go David. Can't wait to watch the program.

Now here is an interesting tidbit. I have been posting comments at Firedoglake for quite some time. I have asked some questions on the site about Aipac and their disproportionate influence on U.S. foreign policy. These were always more than reasonable comments. These comments did not make it, and this was quite some time ago.

Today at Firedoglake I reminded people to call their reps this week (since Fitzgerald and Plame are "allegedly" testifying before congress). I reminded folks to call and e-mail and demand that our reps go further with the Plame investigation.

I also mentioned that folks should contact their reps asking them to deal with the Palestinian/ Israeli conflict in a more fair and balanced way, especially since our reps will get pounded this week by those who have attended the Aipac Conference this past weekend. At first Firedoglake only posted the comment about the Plame issue. When I challenged the screeners about the rest of my quote they came up with a somewhat reasonable response saying that Aipac puts you immediately into the screeners wait pile, due to some radical comments about Aipac in the past. Although I have never seen even seen Aipac make it through on anyones comments at that site

I then challenged fIREDOGLAKE SCREENERS again reminding them that on numerous ocasions in the past I have tried to post comments about people contacting their reps about this issue and these comments were not posted at their site.( I am absolutely sure of this). Never followed through as I did today to challenge them.

I find this very interesting that the mention of Aipac puts comments immediately into the check pile at Firedoglake. And that they claim to have posted my comments in the past about Aipac (they have not). It appears that this blog site may be off limits to reasonable comments about this issue JUST LIKE IN THE MAINSTREAM PRESS.

I encourage people to be on the watch for the blocking of reasonable dialogue about this critical issue in the blogospere.

capt said...

Nice Bedfellows You've Got There



Coming this Sunday to an AIPAC Policy Conference near you:

SUNDAY NIGHT PLENARY - The U.S. and Israel: Tradition and Transcendence

Two eloquent voices from diverse backgrounds explore the history of U.S. involvement in the Middle East and how Americans from all faiths can find common cause in supporting Israel.

Pastor John Hagee

Author and Scholar Michael Oren

Special Guest Eitan Wertheimer, Chairman of the Board of ISCAR


Who's John Hagee? Sarah Posner can tell you all about it. I'll just note this:

In Hagee’s telling, Israel has no choice but to strike at Iran’s nuclear facilities, with or without America’s help. The strike will provoke Russia -- which wants Persian Gulf oil -- to lead an army of Arab nations against Israel. Then God will wipe out all but one-sixth of the Russian-led army, as the world watches "with shock and awe," he says, lending either a divine quality to the Bush administration phrase or a Bush-like quality to God’s wrath.

But Hagee doesn’t stop there. He adds that Ezekiel predicts fire "‘upon those who live in security in the coastlands.’" From this sentence he concludes that there will be judgment upon all who stood by while the Russian-led force invaded Israel, and issues a stark warning to the United States to intervene: "Could it be that America, who refuses to defend Israel from the Russian invasion, will experience nuclear warfare on our east and west coasts?" He says yes, citing Genesis 12:3, in which God said to Israel: "I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you."
To fill the power vacuum left by God’s decimation of the Russian army, the Antichrist -- identified by Hagee as the head of the European Union -- will rule "a one-world government, a one-world currency and a one-world religion" for three and a half years. (He adds that "one need only be a casual observer of current events to see that all three of these things are coming into reality.")

The "demonic world leader" will then be confronted by a false prophet, identified by Hagee as China, at Armageddon, the Mount of Megiddo in Israel. As they prepare for the final battle, Jesus will return on a white horse and cast both villains -- and presumably any nonbelievers -- into a "lake of fire burning with brimstone," thus marking the beginning of his millennial reign.


So you see, John Hagee, who wants to see Israel adopt a hawkish foreign policy that he believes will result in its destruction at the hands of a Russo-Arab alliance is a friend of the Jews. By contrast, everyone who thinks a little pressure to make peace could wind up helping Israel in the long run is an anti-semite.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Some interesting commentary on AIPAC.



capt

capt said...

The Times, They Are a’Changing ….



National Review editor Rich Lowry on Bill Clinton’s perjury:

Let’s concede that sexual harassment law is too broad and that the Jones suit was quite weak, that ideally there shouldn’t have been an independent counsel waiting to pounce on Clinton’s crimes, that a pair of conservative lawyers gave legal advice to the Jones team with the ulterior purpose of harming the president, and that Linda Tripp wasn’t very nice to Monica Lewinsky or very honest — that still leaves the fact that Bill Clinton, the president of the United States, had sex with an intern, perjured himself about it, suborned the perjury of someone else, and obstructed justice. What were House Republicans supposed to do with these alleged high crimes and misdemeanors of the president? Ignore them?

Rich Lowry on Scooter Libby’s perjury:

Fitzgerald’s evidence against Libby was all he said/he said. In these circumstances, a judicious prosecutor would have committed an act of forbearance, and even moral courage: He would have let it go. Fitzgerald couldn’t resist the temptation of every Washington special prosecutor, which is never to close up shop without at least one obstruction-of-justice indictment.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Relative values - a GOPher specialty.



capt

capt said...

New Whistleblowers Back Sibel



An Interview With Sibel Edmonds and James Bamford


Interview recorded March 7, 2007. Click here to listen.

What is the State Secrets Privilege? And what is its legitimate purpose if it has one at all? I have on the line Sibel Edmonds, contract translator-turned-whistleblower who worked for the FBI. Her websites are JustACitizen.com and NSWBC.org – that's the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition – and also James Bamford who was a producer for ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings, is the author of The Puzzle Palace, Body of Secrets, and a Pretext For War, as well as many great investigative reports in Rolling Stone and other magazines. I'd like to welcome you both to the show.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

More good stuff!



capt

Saladin said...

Scientists threatened for 'climate denial'
By Tom Harper, Sunday Telegraph
Last Updated: 12:24am GMT 11/03/2007

Scientists who questioned mankind's impact on climate change have received death threats and claim to have been shunned by the scientific community.

They say the debate on global warming has been "hijacked" by a powerful alliance of politicians, scientists and environmentalists who have stifled all questioning about the true environmental impact of carbon dioxide emissions.

Timothy Ball, a former climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg in Canada, has received five deaths threats by email since raising concerns about the degree to which man was affecting climate change.

advertisement
One of the emails warned that, if he continued to speak out, he would not live to see further global warming.

"Western governments have pumped billions of dollars into careers and institutes and they feel threatened," said the professor.

"I can tolerate being called a sceptic because all scientists should be sceptics, but then they started calling us deniers, with all the connotations of the Holocaust. That is an obscenity. It has got really nasty and personal."

Last week, Professor Ball appeared in The Great Global Warming Swindle, a Channel 4 documentary in which several scientists claimed the theory of man-made global warming had become a "religion", forcing alternative explanations to be ignored.

Richard Lindzen, the professor of Atmospheric Science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology - who also appeared on the documentary - recently claimed: "Scientists who dissent from the alarmism have seen their funds disappear, their work derided, and themselves labelled as industry stooges.

"Consequently, lies about climate change gain credence even when they fly in the face of the science."

Dr Myles Allen, from Oxford University, agreed. He said: "The Green movement has hijacked the issue of climate change. It is ludicrous to suggest the only way to deal with the problem is to start micro managing everyone, which is what environmentalists seem to want to do."

Nigel Calder, a former editor of New Scientist, said: "Governments are trying to achieve unanimity by stifling any scientist who disagrees. Einstein could not have got funding under the present system."
===========
DEATH THREATS? I didn't know anyone was denying we had a climate. this is getting nuttier by the day.

kathleen said...

O'Reilly I did meet Marcy briefly. Very nice. Her book is a must "Anatomy of Deceit". I have encouraged people to contact the DRshow to have Marcy and Jane Hamsher on as guest.

Saladin contacted Peggy she is in California resting from her episode. Has not gotten back to me .. this is not like her.

Sad how this pardon of Libby is assumed to be a "slam dunk". Most of those demanding a pardon are the very same people who demanded the investigation of Clintons blowjob and then wanted to impeach him. Yet somehow the INTELLIGENCE SNOWJOB and outing of Plame and the millions dead and displaced as a direct consequence are just not as important as Clintons blowjob.

So much for our justice system.

THE WHOLD WORLD IS WATCHING AND LAUGHING!

capt said...

Why Libby's Pardon Is a Slam Dunk



Even by Washington's standards, few debates have been more fatuous or wasted more energy than the frenzied speculation over whether President Bush will or will not pardon Scooter Libby. Of course he will.

A president who tries to void laws he doesn't like by encumbering them with "signing statements" and who regards the Geneva Conventions as a nonbinding technicality isn't going to start playing by the rules now. His assertion last week that he is "pretty much going to stay out of" the Libby case is as credible as his pre-election vote of confidence in Donald Rumsfeld. The only real question about the pardon is whether Mr. Bush cares enough about his fellow Republicans' political fortunes to delay it until after Election Day 2008.

Either way, the pardon is a must for Mr. Bush. He needs Mr. Libby to keep his mouth shut. Cheney's Cheney knows too much about covert administration schemes far darker than the smearing of Joseph Wilson. Though Mr. Libby wrote a novel that sank without a trace a decade ago, he now has the makings of an explosive Washington tell-all that could be stranger than most fiction and far more salable.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Speaking of "slam dunk" and the world would have been laughing all along except they too end up paying for the inanity of our and their so called leadership.



capt

capt said...

"The lowest standards of ethics of which a right-thinking man can possibly conceive is taught to the common soldier whose trade is to shoot his fellow men. In youth he may have learned the command, 'Thou shalt not kill,' but the ruler takes the boy just as he enters manhood and teaches him that his highest duty is to shoot a bullet through his neighbor's heart - and this, unmoved by passion or feeling or hatred, and without the least regard to right or wrong, but simply because his ruler gives the word." Clarence Darrow, Resist Not Evil

=
"Law is often the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the right of an individual.": Thomas Jefferson to I. Tiffany, 1819

=
"As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air -- however slight -- lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness." : William O Douglas

===

Thanks ICH Newsletter!

capt said...

China may sell U.S. bonds



Move to diversify could raise rates


In a move that speaks to China's growing significance in the global economy, its government said Friday it will look for more aggressive ways to invest sizable portions of its massive $1 trillion currency reserves.

The new Chinese pool of money, expected to total $200 billion to $300 billion, would instantly create one of the world's most powerful investment funds, analysts said.

With much of China's $1 trillion in reserves currently invested in ultrasafe U.S. Treasury debt, a significant shift out of the American bond market could have an impact on American consumers. Interest rates would rise, making it more expensive to borrow money for a home mortgage or car loan or to pay credit card debt.

Chinese officials said they planned to form a government investment firm to manage some of its holdings, an indication that China has tired of earning small and predictable returns and wants to look elsewhere.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

This could be more important than to just gloss over.



capt

capt said...

Loan turmoil closes doors for buyers



Mortgage terms are tightening as more sub-prime borrowers default and lenders reel.


ShaRon Lewis is facing a 50% hike in the payment on her adjustable-rate mortgage next month.

This week, she discovered she can't qualify for a new loan with payments that she could afford.

And although she's willing to sell the West Hills home she's owned for two years, she has been told it won't fetch what she paid for it. "I have to laugh to keep from bawling," the 30-something Lewis said.

Her situation is becoming increasingly common across the country amid the implosion of the business of sub-prime mortgages — loans for people with less-than-perfect credit or no credit histories.

Many would-be home buyers, and homeowners who want to refinance, are finding that virtually overnight their status has changed: They no longer are eligible for the kind of easy-credit loans that helped millions of people join the ranks of property owners during the housing boom.

On Friday, Calabasas-based Countrywide Financial Corp., the nation's No. 1 mortgage lender, told brokers it would stop making adjustable-rate loans covering 100% of a home's value for customers with low credit scores and unverifiable incomes.

WMC Mortgage, a Burbank-based sub-prime lending unit of General Electric Co., this week also quit making loans for 100% of a home's purchase price and said it would stop lending to people with very low credit scores.

Susan Bies, a governor of the Federal Reserve, said in a speech Friday in Charlotte, N.C., that the troubles of sub-prime borrowers represented the "front end" of a wave the central bank was monitoring.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

I hope people are ready and the bottom doesn't fall out.



capt

capt said...

Scandal of treatment for wounded Iraq veterans



Soldiers 'denied proper hospital care'
Letters reveal anguish of families



A shocking picture of neglect and the appalling treatment of wounded British troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan emerged last night in a remarkable series of letters from soldiers' families obtained by The Observer.

The sheaf of complaints, passed on by deeply alarmed senior military sources, claims that soldiers have been deprived of adequate pain relief and emotional support, and in some cases are unable to sleep because of night time noise in the NHS facilities caring for them.

The NHS last night said that it had launched an inquiry into the complaints.

One letter sent to the MoD and NHS managers reveals how the youngest British soldier wounded in Iraq, Jamie Cooper, was forced to spend a night lying in his own faeces after staff at Birmingham's Selly Oak Hospital allowed his colostomy bag to overflow. On another occasion his medical air mattress was allowed to deflate, leaving him in 'considerable pain' overnight despite an alarm going off.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Are we suppose to believe this is a coincidence? The poor care of vets is more universal than is possible by accident.



capt

kathleen said...

Capt should have said "laughing at us, crying and dying because of us"

David B. Benson said...

"War is bad for children and other living things" --- ca. 1970.

David B. Benson said...

My name is, up to middle initial, rather popular.

I've been confused with the mathematician
David D. Benson
and now it seems that there is another mathematician, this one at the Univsity of Aberdeen, to be confused with:
David J. Benson

Oh well...

kathleen said...

Remember this is the week to call your reps and demand that the Plame investigation go much much further. Fitzgerald has done all he can and now it is up to congress to take this investigation to the source of outing Plame. CALL YOUR REPS AND LET THEM KNOW THAT YOU WANT THEM TO LOOK AT THE FULL RECORD OF FITZGERALDS INVESTIGATION (WHICH HE OFFERED)

Also please call your reps and let them know that there are people out here who want them to take a more reasonable stance on the Israeli Palestinian conflict, and Palestinian aid. The Aipac conference runs from March 11-13th

CALL AND E-MAIL THIS WEEK ABOUT THESE TWO IMPORTANT ISSUES

kathleen said...

SPREAD THE WORD ASK PEOPLE TO CALl THEIR REPS TO COUNTER ACT THE AIPAC STAMPEDE NEXT WEEK.

AIPAC meeting a chance
to stake ground on Iran
Marco Castro/UN
Presidential candidates are taking a hard line against Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
By Ron Kampeas Published: 03/06/2007


WASHINGTON (JTA) — Call it the first primary.

Ten months before New Hampshire voters render their tone-setting verdicts in the race for the next president of the United States, candidates from both parties and their proxies will wander the halls of next week’s American Israel Public Affairs Increase

Committee conference assessing their PIQ — pro-Israel quotient.

The conference of the powerful pro-Israel lobby addresses an array of challenges facing Israel, but dealing with Iran carries a special urgency as its nuclear program continues apace.

AIPAC’s executive committee is expected to outline its tough pro-sanctions line in a resolution, and delegates will endorse bills outlining further sanctions — including against third parties that deal with Iran — when they visit Capitol Hill to lobby on Tuesday, the conference's final day.

Iran Related Resources:
Related Story: Candidates line up Jewish support
Related Story: Weighing threats to Israel
AIPAC conference schedule
also is the pro-Israel issue where Democrats and Republicans differ — on the degree of permissible engagement with the Islamic Republic — and conference-goers will closely watch how top representatives of both parties frame the issue.

The annual policy conference is AIPAC’s benchmark event and the one opportunity to reach major givers in the pro-Israel community gathered under a single roof, albeit the huge, multi-raftered roof of Washington’s convention center.

AIPAC traditionally draws about 6,000 activists to the policy forum. This will be the last chance to reach them before primary season begins in January. This presidential campaign is expected to be the most expensive race ever.

None of the declared presidential candidates will speak at the conference, but most are likely to attend Monday's gala dinner, the conference’s highlight. Top officials speaking include Vice President Dick Cheney and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in her first AIPAC appearance since becoming speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni will speak at the same session as Cheney, and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will address the gathering by satellite.

The agenda for the policy conference reads like a wish list for what the pro-Israel powerhouse expects from the candidates --- and members of the U.S. Congress.

One session is titled “Danger in Damascus,” leaving little doubt where AIPAC stands on accommodation with Syria. “Radioactive Revolution: What a nuclear Iran would mean for the world” is similarly straightforward.

Other topics include isolating the Palestinian Authority as long as it is headed by Hamas and promoting homeland security cooperation between Israel and the United States.

Another feature of the conference is AIPAC’s renewed outreach efforts to non-Jews. One session is dedicated to pro-Israel African Americans, and several embrace evangelical Christians, a group that organizational Jews only recently have come to appreciate. Pastor John Hagee, who founded Christians United for Israel, is a speaker.

The presidential candidates have been reaching out to the pro-Israel community in large forums and small in recent months, from regional AIPAC conferences to Israel's Herzliya policy conference in January. Most recently, U.S. Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Barack Obama (D-Ill.) addressed local AIPAC events in New York and Chicago.

AIPAC rushed Obama’s Chicago appearance forward to last Friday, partly so the candidate could set out his Middle East policy before the AIPAC conference.

There is bipartisan consensus on much of the AIPAC-endorsed agenda, though a subtle fault line is emerging on Iran policy.

Virtually all of the candidates speak of maintaining a military option as a means of preventing Iran from achieving a nuclear weapons capability, but Democrats favor a greater degree of engagement while Republicans favor cutting off the Islamic Republic entirely.

AIPAC won’t count out engagement, but makes it clear that it should occur under the most restrictive circumstances as long as Iran resists nuclear transparency.

“AIPAC firmly believes that diplomatic, economic and political sanctions are the critical instruments in the effort to persuade Iran to abandon its pursuit of nuclear weapons capability,” Josh Block, AIPAC’s spokesman, told JTA.

“AIPAC is not in principle opposed to engagement with Iran, and given Iran's consistent pattern of delay and deception, AIPAC believes diplomatic efforts should not slow the necessary and continued imposition of biting economic and political sanctions,” Block said. “By increasing the pressure on the Iranian regime, the international community can continue to create the circumstances most likely to lead to Iran abandoning its illicit pursuit of nuclear capability.”

Making sanctions rather than negotiations the “critical instrument” of engagement with Iran is the hallmark of Bush administration policy. It's significant that Cheney, the administration’s toughest Iran strategist, is addressing the AIPAC conference for the second year in a row.

It’s a difference that spills down to the candidates.

Republicans talk almost exclusively of sanctions. In the scenario they outline, engagement appears almost absurd.

“When the president of Iran calls for Israel to be wiped off the map, or asks for a world without Zionism, or suggests that Israel's Jewish population return to Europe, or calls the Holocaust a myth, it is clear that we are dealing with an evil man and a very dangerous regime,” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in a satellite address to the Herzliya conference.

Appearing at the same event in person, Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and Republican presidential candidate, belittled parallels to engagement with the Soviet Union during the Cold War as “wishful thinking.”

“The Russians were never suicidal,” he said. “This cannot be said for a regime that celebrates martyrdom.”

In contrast, Democrats emphasize engagement as much as they stand by the military option as a last resort.

“While we should take no option, including military action, off the table, sustained and aggressive diplomacy combined with tough sanctions should be our primary means to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons,” Obama said last week.

Clinton also endorsed engagement in her AIPAC appearance last month, her first foreign policy event since her presidential announcement.

"I'm not sure anything positive would come out of it," but it's worth testing, she said.

Democrats must take into account a base that is wary of military engagement in the wake of the Iraq quagmire.

John Edwards, the former North Carolina senator, talked a tough line in his own satellite address to the Herzliya conference — and has been walking back from it since, repeatedly endorsing engagement.

“We're not negotiating with them directly,” Edwards lamented to the liberal American Prospect magazine last month. “We're not being smart about how we engage with them.”

capt said...

David B. Benson

David B. Benson. Syntax and semantics: A categorical view. Information and Control, 17(2):145-160, September 1970. Citations.

David B. Benson. The basic algebraic structures in categories of derivations. Information and Control, 28(1):1-29, May 1975. References and Citations.

Michael G. Main and David B. Benson. Functional behvior of nondeterministic and concurrent programs. Information and Control, 62(2/3):144-189, August/September 1984. Citations.

David B. Benson and Ofer Ben-Shachar. Bisimulation of automata. Information and Computation, 79(1):60-83, October 1988. References and Citations.

kathleen said...

Israels Defense Minister Amir Peretz will be in Washington this week too.
@ JTA

capt said...

Halliburton Moves Its Headquarters Abroad



Critics Pounce on News of War Contractor's Planned Move From Houston to Dubai


The much-maligned defense contractor Halliburton is moving its corporate headquarters from Houston to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.

"The Eastern hemisphere is a market that is more heavily weighted toward oil exploration and production opportunities," said CEO Dave Lesar at an energy conference in nearby Bahrain. "And growing our business here will bring more balance to Halliburton's overall portfolio."

The draw is obvious. Dubai's friendly tax laws will add to Halliburton's bottom line. Last year, it earned $2.3 billion in profits.

Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-N.H., called the company's move "corporate greed at its worst." He added, "This is an insult to the U.S. soldiers and taxpayers who paid the tab for their no-bid contracts and endured their overcharges for all these years. At the same time they'll be avoiding U.S. taxes, I'm sure they won't stop insisting on taking their profits in cold hard U.S. cash."

Fellow Democratic Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which has investigated contractor fraud, is planning to hold a hearing.

"This is a surprising development," he said. "I want to understand the ramifications for U.S. taxpayers and national security."

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Cheney is consolidating his power offshore. Telling that, eh?



capt

capt said...

Israel can face Iran nuclear threat alone: (Avigdor) Lieberman



JERUSALEM (AFP) - Israel would be able to face any Iranian nuclear threat alone if international sanctions failed to yield results, Minister for Strategic Affairs Avigdor Lieberman said Saturday.

"Israel is capable of dealing alone with the Iranian threat even if sanctions don't work," the ultra-nationalist minister said in an interview with Channel 2 television.

"Israel is prepared to face the Iranian issue even if it remains alone."

More HERE

kathleen said...

Iraqi Body Count


is committed to ensuring that there never has to be an Iran Body Count project. We support the following initiatives working to resolve the Iran crisis through diplomacy and dialogue:

British American Security Information Council (BASIC)
Crisis Action
Oxford Research Group
Earlier analysis of the consequences of an Iran war...

capt said...

Why does The Times recognize Israel's 'right to exist'?



The paper consistency adopts Israel's language, giving credence to an inaccurate, simplistic and dangerous cliche.


'AS SOON AS certain topics are raised," George Orwell once wrote, "the concrete melts into the abstract and no one seems able to think of turns of speech that are not hackneyed: Prose consists less and less of words chosen for the sake of their meaning, and more and more of phrases tacked together like the sections of a prefabricated henhouse." Such a combination of vagueness and sheer incompetence in language, Orwell warned, leads to political conformity.

No issue better illustrates Orwell's point than coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the United States. Consider, for example, the editorial in The Times on Feb. 9 demanding that the Palestinians "recognize Israel" and its "right to exist." This is a common enough sentiment — even a cliche. Yet many observers (most recently the international lawyer John Whitbeck) have pointed out that this proposition, assiduously propagated by Israel's advocates and uncritically reiterated by American politicians and journalists, is — at best — utterly nonsensical.

First, the formal diplomatic language of "recognition" is traditionally used by one state with respect to another state. It is literally meaningless for a non-state to "recognize" a state. Moreover, in diplomacy, such recognition is supposed to be mutual. In order to earn its own recognition, Israel would have to simultaneously recognize the state of Palestine. This it steadfastly refuses to do (and for some reason, there are no high-minded newspaper editorials demanding that it do so).

Second, which Israel, precisely, are the Palestinians being asked to "recognize?" Israel has stubbornly refused to declare its own borders. So, territorially speaking, "Israel" is an open-ended concept. Are the Palestinians to recognize the Israel that ends at the lines proposed by the 1947 U.N. Partition Plan? Or the one that extends to the 1949 Armistice Line (the de facto border that resulted from the 1948 war)? Or does Israel include the West Bank and East Jerusalem, which it has occupied in violation of international law for 40 years — and which maps in its school textbooks show as part of "Israel"?

For that matter, why should the Palestinians recognize an Israel that refuses to accept international law, submit to U.N. resolutions or readmit the Palestinians wrongfully expelled from their homes in 1948 and barred from returning ever since?

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

I think the answer is too obvious.



capt

capt said...

Inquiry, audit due for faith-based expenditures



A review shows questionable outlays by the contractor that administered $22 million.


A pot of money intended to help the poor was used to buy two giant flat-screen televisions, pay for two $125-a-month parking spots for a state contractor and purchase a $6,000 study that heaped praise on the state government office that made it all possible.

On top of that, the contractor hired to administer the money — We Care America — is paid about $3,500 a day, including a 15 percent charge for "overhead." And the 50-inch televisions, which cost $15,229 to buy and install, plus 15 percent, aren't fully functional, according to Keith Dailey, press secretary for Gov. Ted Strickland. One is in Columbus while the other is in We Care America's offices in Virginia, he said.

Under the Taft administration, the Governor's Office on Faith-based and Community Initiatives paid one-page monthly invoices from We Care America with apparently few questions.

Concerns about the financial management of the office led Strickland this week to ask state Inspector General Tom Charles to investigate and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services to conduct an audit, Dailey said. Strickland replaced the office staff in January.


More HERE

capt said...

Comedian commits apparent suicide, police said



WEST HOLLYWOOD, California (AP) -- Richard Jeni, a standup comedian who played to sold-out crowds, was a regular on the "Tonight Show" and appeared in movies, died of a gunshot wound in an apparent suicide, police said Sunday.

Police found the 45-year-old comedian alive but gravely injured in a West Hollywood home when they responded to a call Saturday morning from Jeni's girlfriend, Los Angeles Police Officer Norma Eisenman said.

Eisenman said the caller told police: "My boyfriend shot himself in the face."

Jeni died at a nearby hospital.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

How sad. He was a very funny guy.



capt

capt said...

Governor trying to revive medical marijuana bill



SANTA FE (AP) - Governor Richardson says it’s important that state lawmakers approve a medical marijuana bill before the session is over next week.

The governor says he’s meeting with lawmakers to try to revive the medical marijuana measure that was narrowly defeated by the House this week.

Richardson already has talked one-on-one with at least five House members to try to get them to change their votes.

The governor says he also plans to talk to House Speaker Ben Lujan—who opposes the bill.

Richardson, who is campaigning for the Democratic nomination for president, says he wants the medical marijuana legislation.

The measure would authorize the use of marijuana by patients certified under a Department of Health program.


More HERE

*****end of clip*****

This is the kind of thing Bill Richardson does that gets my approval. He has done well as our governor.



capt

capt said...

Unlocking Minds



Psychic researchers say our consciousness has unexplained powers. That also goes for chickens.


As we travel through life we are all seekers after something larger than ourselves, a truth known to seers, healers and book publishers through the ages. For Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer, a prominent clinical psychologist at Berkeley, her quest began in 1991 with the theft of a rare and valuable harp belonging to her daughter. On the advice of a friend, she sought help from a professional psychic named Harold McCoy, who, with only a street map and a photograph of the harp—he never left his home in Arkansas—told her exactly the address in Oakland where it could be found. For the rest of her life Mayer was obsessed with this feat, as who wouldn't be? So last month, 15 years after the harp was returned, I sent McCoy a picture of a lock—a cast-iron padlock my grandfather had used to lock up his pushcart at night—and a set of New York City street maps. Find the lock, I told him.

More HERE

O'Reilly said...

CIA leak; Cloud over Mr. Cheney

President George Bush
Sen. Edward Kennedy
Sen. John Kerry
Rep. Stephen Lynch


March 12, 2007

Dear Mr. President, Sen. Kerry, Sen, Kennedy, Rep. Lynch,

Everyone following the trial of I. Scooter Libby learned there is clear evidence that Mr. Cheney informed Mr. Libby about the identity of covert CIA agent Valerie Plame.

By following the trial we also learned that efforts in the White House to discredit Mr. Wilson were directed by Mr. Cheney, and that one result of this effort was the disloyal and criminal leak of classified information: Valerie Plame's status as a CIA operative under non-official cover.

Everyone following the trial also knows the highly respected prosecutor Mr. Fitzgerald was unable to determine who was responsible because Mr. Libby obstructed justice by lying to the FBI and lying under oath to the grand jury. Perjury in a criminal investigation is an extremely serious offense. Now, Mr. Libby is a convicted felon and his crime is obstructing justice. Now, there is a cloud over the Vice President, and as result, there is a cloud over the Presidency.

Apart from President Bush's pledge to terminate anyone in his administration leaking classified information, and former press secretary Scott McLellan's statement that neither Mr. Libby nor Mr. Rove were involved, the White House, the President and the Vice President have remained silent and unwilling to offer a clear and honest explanation… with the rare exception of Mr. Cheney's occasional public affirmation of Mr. Libby's honesty.

How will the cloud over the Vice President and the White House be removed?

o Mr. Libby could decide to make a deal with the prosecutor in return for his confession and honest testimony.

o The Vice President could come forward to explain his role and to answer questions.

o The President could make good on his word to terminate White House officials involved in the leak. From evidence presented at trial, that list could include Karl Rove, Dick Armitage, and Stephen Hadley.

o Congress could investigate the leak case using its subpoena power.

From prosecutor Mr. Fitzgerald we learned "truth" is the engine of our justice system.

Mr. President, it is within your power to give the truth back. Any other way is a harmful spectacle our country should not endure. A pardon for Mr. Libby's would be a miscarriage of justice and a stain on your legacy. People need to know that you have the backs of all public servants that risk their lives in service of our country, not just the one's that work closest to you.

O'Reilly said...

RE: Halliburton Moves Its Headquarters Abroad

I wonder in Halliburton is seeking a status that requires less compliance with American law such as congresssional subpeonas. Waxman announced investigation of Halliburtonno-bid war contracts and the CIA leak case last week.

O'Reilly said...

Valerie Plame to Testify
March 08, 2007

ABC News' Tom Shine Reports: Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., has announced that Valerie Plame Wilson will testify before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on Friday, March 16th.

link
Other witnesses are also expected to appear but their names have not yet been released.

O'Reilly said...

US Attorneys

The provision of mysterious origin in the Patriot Act is a BIG RED FLAG that says, the replacemnt of the US Attorneys is a deliberate attempt by Bush and Gonzalez and Specter to politicize the offices of the US Attorneys to illegally influence elections.

The provision allows replacement candidatees to be appointed without Senate advice and consent and thus avoid scrutiny. That is all is does. Now why would BushCo want these candidates to avoid the scrutiny of the Senate? Becuase they would not have survived it. One of the candidates was an aide for Rove.

US Atttorney's have always served at the pleasure of the President. Traditionaly, they had job security for the duration of the president's term. The termination and reappointment of new US Attorneys could have been accomplished w/o the new Patriot Act clause of mysterious origin. The clause simply allows the President to avoid advice and consent of the Senate for the new candidates not for the decision to terminate the old ones. link

capt said...

Hagel: Bush could be impeached



Sen. Chuck Hagel, the conservative Nebraska Republican turned harsh critic of President George W. Bush's failed war in Iraq, believes Bush could be headed for impeachment unless he starts listening to the concerns of the American people. "The president says, 'I don't care.' He's not accountable anymore," Hagel says in an interview with Esquire magazine, scheduled to hit newsstands next week. "Before this is over, you might see calls for his impeachment. I don't know. It depends on how this goes."

Hagel, one of the first Republicans to break ranks with Bush over Iraq, is considering a run for President.

More HERE

Saladin said...

30-day Countdown to War
comment
321 Gold

Bob Moriarty
Archives
Mar 11, 2007

We are almost certainly in the last days of a countdown to nuclear war. Israel has made plans to attack Iran in a war of aggression, which will probably begin with some staged attack such as the attack on the Liberty in 1967.
http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/ussliberty.html

On the 8th of March Israel issued the following warning.

"• 5. Updated Travel Warnings
Israel's National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Division presents the following updated travel warnings for Israelis traveling abroad. It is advised that travelers should avoid visiting and leave the area as soon as possible in the following high to very high-threat countries: Algeria, Afghanistan, Chechnya, (southern Russia) Djibouti, Egypt, (especially the Sinai peninsula), Jordan, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kashmir (northern India), Lebanon Malaysia, Mindanao, (southern Philippines) Northern Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Somalia Southern Thailand, Syria & Yemen. Travelers should postpone non-essential travel to: Bangladesh, Bangkok, Libya, Oman, Nigeria & southeastern Turkey (borders with Iraq and Iran). Travelers in general, should avoid visiting the following countries: Bahrain, Chad, Kenya, Kuwait, Morocco, Qatar, Tunisia. Israeli citizens are called upon to be especially cautious when visiting: Philippines, Turkey, Thailand, & Uzbekistan. (Sources: National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Division, GPO)."
http://www.infoisrael.net/cgi-local/text.pl?source=2/a/ix/080320072

Israel is the most hated country in the world today for their war crimes and they are about to magnify the problem 1000 fold. I cannot predict the negative things which will happen as a result of another illegal and immoral war but dropping nuclear weapons on a non-nuclear state which poses no threat to either the US or Israel is going to open Pandora's box as no war crime in history ever tried.

One of the results I can guarantee is that the US dollar is going to be destroyed. It's no great shakes predicting that. Hell, even the Comptroller General of the United States is running around telling as many people as will listen (about 14 in total, I reckon) that the United States is bankrupt. Between a two-trillion-dollar-losing war in Iraq, a balance of payments totally out of control and the Gang of Fools in Washington, you can pretty much kiss the dollar goodbye the day the attack begins. And don't think for a minute I'm talking about strictly the Republican fools in Washington. By their actions, or better yet, lack of action, the Democrats have proven since the last election that they can be just as corrupt and ignorant as the neo-Nazi Republicans.

The American people clearly voted against the illegal war in Iraq and against the policies of this all too corrupt administration. Guess how thrilled the voters are going to be when they wake up one morning soon to $200 a barrel oil and find out just how much freedom they have left. (Hint, it rhymes with NONE)

Israel knows what their intentions are and it's no accident that they are warning their citizens to stay out or to get out of almost 40 countries immediately. As hated as they are today, Israel and the United States are about to commit the most foolish and self-destructive act of war in history. I have more time in the chow hall in combat than all of this administration combined and I can assure you that we are going to lose. It won't talk six months as it did with Iraq, we will know almost at once.

It wasn't Hitler who paid the greatest price for the war crimes he committed; it was the German people. And today it will be the citizens of Israel and the United States who will pay the ultimate price for what is no more than cold-blooded murder of millions. The butcher's bill will be paid.

Bob Moriarty
President: 321gold
============
It's coming. Soon this whole Plamegate thing will be down the memory hole. Are the dems going to stop this insanity?

capt said...

China creating company to invest US$1 trillion reserves


[…]

The growth in China's reserves is driven by the rapid growth of its exports, which brings in dollars, euros and other foreign currency, and by the billions of investment dollars being poured into the country.

The surge in money flooding in from abroad forces the central bank to drain billions of dollars from the economy every month by selling bonds in order to reduce inflationary pressures.

The composition of China's foreign currency reserves is a secret. But economists believe that as much as 75 percent is believed to be in U.S. dollar-denominated instruments, mostly Treasuries, with the rest in euros and a small amount in yen.

Stephen Green, chief economist at Standard Chartered Bank in Shanghai, calculated that last year the central bank made a US$29 billion profit on its Treasury holdings after paying interest on its own bonds and other expenses.

But even that represents a return of less than 3 percent on the US$1 trillion in holdings.

By contrast, Singapore's Temasek says it has averaged an 18 percent annual return since it was created in 1974.

More HERE

*****end of clip*****

Higher returns means higher risk. Does anybody believe there is anything except fabricated risk? Like the mega-billion multinational corporations take risks? I guess in some sense of the word they risk not being profitable enough but the return on investment is a given when wealth is contrived from thin air.



capt

O'Reilly said...

Kathleen, Spell it out and make a line break to avoid the auto-filters on FDL:

"American
Israel Public Affairs Committee"

link

I wrote Kennedy,Kerry, Lynch and Bush about Libby and Cheney.


I think Waxman will make some headway and I think BushCo will do some stonewalling. Plame testifies Friday.

They'll haul Gonzalez in too. Remember how he waited 12 hours to inform WH personnel about the criminal investigation and document production subpeona?

Add the US Attorney scandal and the FBI's illegal access to citizens information and Abu Gonzalez will be the first one down.

Rule of law is what must be rescued here. Gonzalez's impeachment and guilt is an appropriate and practical way to accomplish it.

Saladin said...

Checkpoint: The Herded Life of Palestinians: Information
Liberation


The daily bullshit these poor people are forced to endure.

Saladin said...

From the above video:

Quote, "the Jews are the best."
Quote, "All of Ramallah is a jungle, There are monkeys, dogs, gorillas. The problem is that the animals are locked, they can't come out. We're humans, they're animals, they aren't human, we are. That's the difference between..."

It is a disgrace that this is allowed to continue. The UN is completely worthless and doesn't lift a finger to help these people. Apparently many of the Jews in Israel learned very little from Hitler, beyond emulating him that is. There is something very wrong with this world.

O'Reilly said...

"A key question for investigators now: did Justice officials, with involvement from the White House, fire attorneys in retaliation for actions that didn't favor the GOP? . . .

"Justice officials say the dismissals were for 'job-performance reasons,' as well as for failure to pursue Bush administration policy priorities. But where did the list of particular U.S. attorneys to fire come from? Two senior Justice officials, who didn't want to be named discussing the dismissals, tell Newsweek that Kyle Sampson, Gonzales's chief of staff, developed the list of eight prosecutors to be fired last October -- with input from the White House."


Michael Isikoff, Newsweek

capt said...

New Thread!