Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Light Reading

Talk about a windfall. From a press release sent out today by the National Security Archive, a nongovernmental outfit:

Washington D.C., September 5, 2007 - The National Security Archive today sued the White House seeking the recovery and preservation of more than 5 million White House e-mail messages that were apparently deleted from White House computers between March 2003 and October 2005.

The lawsuit filed this morning in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia names as defendants the Executive Office of the President and its components that are subject to the Federal Records Act, including the White House Office of Administration (OA), and the National Archives and Records Administration (which is responsible for long-term preservation of federal and presidential records), under the records laws and the Administrative Procedure Act.

White House officials ranging from spokesperson Dana Perino to counsel Keith Roberts have acknowledged in press and Congressional briefings that e-mail is missing from the White House archive, and that the EOP in 2002 abandoned the electronic records management system put in place by the Clinton White House. Whistleblowers cited in conjunction with a Freedom of Information lawsuit brought by the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) have alleged that more than 5 million e-mail messages are missing from the White House servers.

"The Bush White House broke the law and erased our history by deleting those e--ail messages," said National Security Archive director Tom Blanton. "The period of the missing email starts with the invasion of Iraq and runs through the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina."

How convenient. The complaint and related documents are posted at

IMPEACH SPECTER? Will conservatives call for the head of Senator Arlen Specter. This moderate GOPer has encouraged GOP Senator Larry Craig, who was arrested in Minneapolis airport bathroom for lewd conduct, to fight the charge (though he did plead guilty) and to remain in the Senate. Most Republicans are not too happy with the news Craig may renege on his resignation announcement. They want Craig out of the Senate and out of the picture damn soon--well before next year's elections. Look for some to blame Specter as Craig's enabler.

Posted by David Corn at September 5, 2007 05:29 PM


David B. Benson said...

But if they broke the law, shouldn't the DoJ be looking into it?


capt said...

The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself: Archibald Macleish:

There are men - now in power in this country - who do not respect dissent, who cannot cope with turmoil, and who believe that the people of America are ready to support repression as long as it is done with a quiet voice and a business suit: John Lindsay

We live in oppressive times. We have, as a nation, become our own thought police; but instead of calling the process by which we limit our expression of dissent and wonder "censorship," we call it "concern for commercial viability.": David Mamet

The corporate grip on opinion in the United States is one of the wonders of the Western world. No First World country has ever managed to eliminate so entirely from its media all objectivity - much less dissent: Gore Vidal

Thanks ICH Newsletter!

capt said...

Hollywood Fred’s Campaign Launch Gets Bumpy

This has to be the laziest possible choice to enter into a presidential campaign. Fred Thompson will not be at tonight’s FOXNews GOP debate tonight, but has opted to make his presence known by purchasing commercial time on Fox during the debate. The ad: HERE

FOXNews is clearly a little miffed at being snubbed by Frederick of Hollywood, with a fun article entitled “Fred’s Follies“:

Fred Thompson is set to kick off his official announcement week on the Tonight Show tonight… but it could be overshadowed by more turmoil to come in the Thompson campaign.

When Thompson appears on Jay Leno tonight it will mark the campaigns complete repudiation of a new media campaign strategy and announcement plan that the original Fredheads had designed over several months and finalized in August.

More resignations of key founding Fredheads are coming. Soon NONE of the people who got the buzz started in March may remain.

Thompson did Leno in June and numerous senior aides said at the time he would “never return to Hollywood to announce — that’s what McCain did! We won’t use video, that’s what Hillary did. We will let Fred be Fred. We are launching from the (Grand Ole) Opry then hitting New Hampshire and Iowa.” Now they are copying both McCain and Hillary by appearing on Leno and a video.

The original Fredheads are no longer angry or frustrated; most have been fired already or given up. The remaining originals say they will quit soon.

The latest person let go by the campaign was Jim Mills, a long-time Capitol Hill producer for FOX News, who was told on Friday. A little over a month earlier, Mills was personally recruited and hired as spokesman by Fred and Jeri Thompson at their dinner table.


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

This guy is not going to be much more than a flash in the pan. The only thing the GOP has going is all junk - and they know it. Expect the unexpected and anticipate the big lie. It is the only thing the Reich-wing can do.


capt said...

Court Rejects Wiretapping Secrecy Claims, Orders New Index of Documents and More Detailed Reasons for Withholding

Washington, DC, September 5, 2007 --The United States District Court for the District of Columbia today largely rejected the government’s attempt to withhold without explanation all records concerning its warrantless wiretapping surveillance program. In a Freedom of Information Act law suit brought by the National Security Archive, along with the Electronic Privacy Information Center and the American Civil Liberties Union, the Court rejected the summary explanations and declarations of the government.

Finding many of the government’s secrecy claims “too vague and general,” Judge Henry Kennedy denied in part the government’s motion for summary judgment. In particular, the Court dismissed the government’s withholding of its final legal opinions as “insufficient” and stated that “declaring ‘because we say so’ is an inadequate method for invoking exemption 5” of the FOIA. The motion was granted in part largely with respect to specific records or categories of records that the plaintiffs did not dispute.

In several parts of the opinion, Judge Kennedy exhibited skepticism about the government’s unsupported claims of secrecy. In one footnote, the Court expressed “substantial frustration” with the Executive Branch’s use of classified declarations surrounded by “an exceedingly high level of secrecy” that prevented even the Court’s clerk, who had obtained a security clearance, from viewing some of the government’s submissions.

“In a decision that evidences careful review of the government declarations and submissions, the Court makes clear that it is not enough for the government to simply say something is secret – it must justify its claim,” commented Archive General Counsel Meredith Fuchs. “Unfortunately, as is often the case in a FOIA dispute, the government is given several opportunities to get it right. We hope, on the next round, the Court decides to look at some of the records in dispute.”


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

This is important stuff and might be a win.


capt said...

Bush knew Saddam had no weapons of mass destruction

Salon exclusive: Two former CIA officers say the president squelched top-secret intelligence, and a briefing by George Tenet, months before invading Iraq.

On Sept. 18, 2002, CIA director George Tenet briefed President Bush in the Oval Office on top-secret intelligence that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction, according to two former senior CIA officers. Bush dismissed as worthless this information from the Iraqi foreign minister, a member of Saddam's inner circle, although it turned out to be accurate in every detail. Tenet never brought it up again.

Nor was the intelligence included in the National Intelligence Estimate of October 2002, which stated categorically that Iraq possessed WMD. No one in Congress was aware of the secret intelligence that Saddam had no WMD as the House of Representatives and the Senate voted, a week after the submission of the NIE, on the Authorization for Use of Military Force in Iraq. The information, moreover, was not circulated within the CIA among those agents involved in operations to prove whether Saddam had WMD.

On April 23, 2006, CBS's "60 Minutes" interviewed Tyler Drumheller, the former CIA chief of clandestine operations for Europe, who disclosed that the agency had received documentary intelligence from Naji Sabri, Saddam's foreign minister, that Saddam did not have WMD. "We continued to validate him the whole way through," said Drumheller. "The policy was set. The war in Iraq was coming, and they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy, to justify the policy."


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

So Bush lied and he knew he was lying.


capt said...

Who Are The Fanatics?

When the facts are considered – Muslim disunity and the absence of modern technology, navies, and strategic reach – the Bush/Cheney/neoconservative/Zionist propaganda that "we must fight them over there before they come over here" is such a transparent hoax that it is astounding that so many Americans have fallen for it.

To the extent that there is any Muslim threat, it is one created by the US and Israel. Israel has no diplomacy toward Muslims and relies on violence and coercion. The US has interfered in the internal affairs of Muslim countries during the entire post World War II period. The US overthrew an elected government in Iran and installed the Shah. The US backed Saddam Hussein in his aggression against Iran. The US has kept in power rulers it could control and has pandered to the desires of Israeli governments. If America is hated, America created the hate by its arrogant and dismissive treatment of the Muslim Middle East.

There is no such thing as Islamofascism. This is a coined propaganda word used to inflame the ignorant. There is no factual basis for the hatred that neoconservative Islamophobes instill in Americans. God did not tell America to destroy the Muslims for the Israelis.

In America today, blind ignorant hate against Muslims has been brought to a boiling point. The fear and loathing is so great that the American public and its elected representatives in Congress offer scant opposition to the Bush administration's plan to make Iran the third Middle East victim of American aggression in the 21st century.

Most Americans, who Harris believes to be so reasonable, tolerant, and deliberative that they cannot defend themselves, could not care less that one million Iraqis have lost their lives during the American occupation and that an estimated four million Iraqis have been displaced. The total of dead and displaced comes to 20 percent of the Iraqi population. If this is not fanaticism on the part of the Bush administration, what is it? Certainly it is not reason, tolerance, and deliberation.


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

PCR - good stuff - as always. PCR is one of the smartest and most balanced voices of reason.


capt said...

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