Friday, June 30, 2006

Palast: GOP Using Choicepoint to Rig Mexico's Elections....

STEALING MEXICO: Bush Team Helps Ruling Party "Floridize" Mexican Presidential Election

By Greg Palast

Greg Palast is the author of the New York Times bestseller, "ARMED MADHOUSE: Who's Afraid of Osama Wolf?, China Floats Bush Sinks, the Scheme to Steal '08, No Child's Behind Left and other Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Class War."

Friday, June 30, 2006 -- GEORGE Bush's operatives have plans to jigger with the upcoming elections. I'm not talking about the November '06 vote in the USA (though they have plans for that, too). I'm talking about the election this Sunday in Mexico for their Presidency.

It begins with an FBI document marked, "Counterterrorism" and "Foreign Intelligence Collection" and "Secret." Date: "9/17/2001," six days after the attack on the World Trade towers. It's nice to know the feds got right on the ball, if a little late.

What does this have to do with jiggering Mexico's election? Hold that thought.

This document is what's called a "guidance" memo for using a private contractor to provide databases on dangerous foreigners. Good idea. We know the 19 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and the Persian Gulf Emirates. So you'd think the "Intelligence Collection" would be aimed at getting info on the guys in the Gulf.

Not so. When we received the document, we obtained as well its classified appendix. The target nations for "foreign counterterrorism investigation" were nowhere near the Persian Gulf. Every one was in Latin America -- Argentina, Venezuela, Mexico and a handful of others. See one of the documents yourself.

Latin America?! Was there a terror cell about to cross into San Diego with exploding enchiladas?

All the target nations had one thing in common besides a lack of terrorists: each had a left-leaning presidential candidate or a left-leaning president in office. In Venezuela, President Hugo Chavez, bete noir of the Bush Administration, was facing a recall vote. In Mexico, the anti-Bush Mayor of Mexico City, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was (and is) leading the race for the Presidency.

Most provocative is the contractor to whom this no-bid contract was handed: ChoicePoint Inc. of Alpharetta, Georgia. ChoicePoint is the database company that created a list for Governor Jeb Bush of Florida of voters to scrub from voter rolls before the 2000 election. ChoicePoint's list (94,000 names in all) contained few felons. Most of those on the list were guilty of no crime except Voting While Black. The disenfranchisement of these voters cost Al Gore the presidency.

Having chosen our President for us, our President's men chose ChoicePoint for this sweet War on Terror database gathering. The use of the Venezuela's and Mexico's voter registry files to fight terror is not visible -- but the use of the lists to manipulate elections is as obvious as the make-up on Katherine Harris' cheeks.

In Venezuela, leading up to the August 2004 vote on whether to re-call President Chavez, I saw his opposition poring over the voter rolls in laptops, claiming the right to challenge voters as Jeb's crew did to voters in Florida. It turns out this operation was partly funded by the International Republican Institute of Washington, an arm of the GOP. Where did they get the voter info?

In that case, access to Venezuela's voter rolls didn't help the Republican-assisted drive against Chavez, who won by a crushing plurality.

In Mexico this Sunday, we can expect to see the same: challenges of Obrador voters in a race, the polls say, is too close to call. Not that Mexico's rulers need lessons from the Bush Administration on how to mess with elections.

In 1988, the candidate for Obrador's Party of the Democratic Revolution (PDR), who opinion polls showed as a certain winner, somehow came up short against the incumbent party of the ruling elite. Some of the electoral tricks were far from subtle. In the state of Guerrero, the PDR was leading on official tally sheets by 359,369. Oddly, the official final count was 309,202 for the ruling party, only182,874 for the PDR. Challenging the vote would have been dangerous. Two top officials of Obrador's party were assassinated during the campaign.

Crucial to the surprise victory of the ruling party was the introduction of computer voting machines and the centralization of voter databases. Observer Andrew Reding of the Council on Hemispheric Affairs reported that ruling party operatives had special access codes denied the opposition.

Whether the US "War on Terror" lists will find a use in Sunday's election, we cannot know. But the use of American government resources to interfere in south-of-the-border campaigns is an open secret. The GOP's International Republican Institute has run training sessions for the PAN youth wing, funded by US taxpayers through the "National Endowment for Democracy."

Foreign -- that is, American -- interference in political campaigns is a crime. That didn't stop Team Bush. However, when the theft of its citizen files was discovered, Argentina threatened to arrest ChoicePoint contractors until the company returned the tapes -- and Mexico's attorney general did in fact arrest the ChoicePoint data thieves to avoid his party's looking too much the stooge of its Washington patron. Whether George Bush gave back his copy, no one will say.

Wholesale theft is expected on Sunday in forms both subtle and brutal. How the US' purloined "counterterrorism" lists will be used, we don't know. We are certain however, that the Administration did not siphon off these Latin voter files to fight a War on Terror. It appears, rather, part of the Bush Administration's and GOP's hemispheric War on Democracy -- along a battle line which runs from Florida to Ohio to Juarez.

**********

For as-it-happens reporting on the Mexican election, check www.GregPalast.com for dispatches from our team investigator Special Correspondent Matt Pascarella with video journalist Rick Rowley in Mexico City.

Get your copy of Palast's new book, Armed Madhouse, at www.GregPalast.com

Special thanks to the Electronic Privacy Information Center, Washington DC, which received and passed on to our team the FBI ChoicePoint files and other foreign intelligence documentation.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Puh-RAZE Th' LAWD, they has SEEN th' LAHT!



The Post has finally noticed something... amiss with the rightwing slot machines that selected a Preznint for the citizens of America.

This only after hundreds of thousands of us have been shouting ourselves hoarse over it for the last few years.

But hey, better too late than never.

Quotes of the Day:

I need some answers! Our department is being audited by the County. I have been waiting for someone to give me an explanation as to why Precinct 216 gave Al Gore a minus 16022 [votes] when it was uploaded. Will someone please explain this so that I have the information to give the auditor instead of standing here "looking dumb."

~Global Election Systems (now Diebold) employee Lana Hires' email asking her supervisor how to explain 16 thousand "disappeared" Gore votes to an auditor of the 2000 election.


For a demonstration I suggest you fake it. Program them both so they look the same, and then just do the upload fro [sic] the AV. That is what we did in the last AT/AV demo.
~email from an unnamed Diebold supervisor, 2000 election


Right now you can open GEMS' .mdb file with MS-Access, and alter its contents. That includes the audit log. This isn't anything new.
~email from an unnamed Diebold supervisor, 2000 election


Elections are not rocket science. Why is it so hard to get things right! I have never been at any other company that has been so miss [sic] managed.
~email from an unnamed Diebold employee, 2000 election

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Details, Details.... (Yawn)

Whoops. Could it be our ever-fightin'-ready draft-dodgin' chickenhawkin' "Administration" (LOL) just got caught fabricating yet another in a series of outrageous warmongering whoppers?

Perish the thought.

But the Muckracker Report fills us in on the juicy details. Turns out the "Miami Seven" had no bombs, materials or even plans to attack the Sears Tower, at least not until those plans were proposed to them by an undercover FBI agent. Oh, and their "Al Qaeda contact" was also non-existent -- the same agent who allegedly persuaded them to "swear allegiance" to Al Qaeda.

The more this "major breakthrough" is exposed to the light, the more it starts to stink of.... expedient inaccuracies.

As Muckraker Justin Rood puts it,

Outside the warehouse HQ the seven would-be terrorists called "The Temple," the men "took turns standing guard outside the door, dressed up in makeshift military uniforms and combat boots. Sometimes they covered their faces with ski masks," reports Hosenball. Because nothing hides a sleeper cell better than a uniformed guard wearing a ski mask and combat boots in sweltering Florida heat.
After all, one wouldn't want the neighbors getting suspicious or anything.

Oh, and they weren't even Muslims.

Eager supporters of the Bush Administration even went so far as to rename one of the members -- from "Brother Sonny" to "Brother SUNNI". An honest mistake anyone might make, right?

Meanwhile, another group, who numbers in the millions, continues their proud vocal support of the destruction of not just America, but all life on Earth.

Of course such declarations allow them to enjoy the full support of Bush's Red House. And vice versa. And whoever thought we'd long for the good old days of the original creepy "Jesusfish"? But no one will be arguing that this is a case of evolution -- or intelligent design, for that matter.

Quote of the Day:

"Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."

--From the Nuremburg war trial testimony of Hermann Wilhelm Goering, Marshal of the Nazi's Third Reich, Adolf Hitler's second in command and former head of the Gestapo (secret police), which he had founded. Goering was tried, convicted and sentenced to death, but escaped execution by commiting suicide with a cyanide capsule.


Update: Oh, man, does Jon Stewart ever have their number.... (Thanks C&L!)

A Well-Deserved Boot in the Ass....


For unflinching opportunism, recreancy, stupidity and fascistic zeal below and beyond the call of duty, it's high time for a solid boot in the ass.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Geralbo Has Come to Kick Yer Ass....

Amid the pro-genocide, pro-torture, pro-gulag chest-beating, Geraldo Rivera (who had nearly redeemed himself for waxing human during the Katrina fumble) has lept to the top of the dogpile, declaring that he's "...seen a hell of a lot more combat than John Kerry".

The idiocy factor defies speech.

Quotes of the Day:

I hate those men who would send into war youth to fight and die for them; the pride and cowardice of those old men, making their wars that boys must die.
~Mary Roberts Rinehart

Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.
~George Washington

I'm fed up to the ears with old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.
~George McGovern

BYU Physics Prof Finds Thermate in WTC Samples

Jacob Hamblin

Based on chemical analysis of WTC structural steel residue, a Brigham Young University physics professor has identified the material as Thermate. Thermate is the controlled demolition explosive thermite plus sulfur. Sulfur causes the thermite to burn hotter, cutting steel quickly and leaving trails of yellow residue.

Prof. Steven Jones, who conducted his PhD research at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center and post-doctoral research at Cornell University and the Los Alamos Meson Physics Facility, has analysed materials from WTC and has detected the existence of thermate, used for "cutting" the steel support columns, as evident in the photo below.

Dr. Jones is a co-founder of Scholars for 911 Truth.

Dr. Jones in earlier work pointed to thermate as the likely explosive that brought down the WTC1, WTC2, and WTC7 skyscrapers. But only recently was physical material analysed in the lab and the presence of thermate announced. The samples were provided to Dr. Jones's team from redundant sources.

Both BYU and Prof. Jones have been offered additional grants if he "changes the direction" of his research. In addition, there have been threats made by an individual who is "taking action to stop" Jones' research, specifically his experiments with thermite (aluminothermics), on the grounds his work may be "helpful to terrorists". Jones notes that much more detailed information on both thermite and thermate is readily available on the Internet.

More here.

Quote of the Day:

At 9:30 there was a tremendous explosion and the great central chamber was totally enveloped in flames. The fire quickly raced out of control despite the efforts of the fire fighters and soon only the walls of the gutted building were still standing....

It wasn't long before Chancellor Hitler and Prussian Minister Goering arrived amid a flurry of reporters and photographers. Although he had just stepped out of his car, Goering at once accused the communists of setting the fire. The debate over who set the fire continues and may never be solved to everyone's satisfaction. Despite attempts to support the case against van der Lubbe, who was tried and executed for the crime, a great deal of evidence collected and analyzed by Walther Hofer of Bern points in the direction of a SA/SS Sondergruppe headed by Reinhard Heydrich and an official of the Prussian Ministry of the Interior, Kurt Daluge. Less important than the cause of the fire however was the result. Before the sun rose on the morning of the 28th, over 4,000 communists and a miscellany of intellectuals and professional men who had incurred the wrath of the Nazi Party were arrested. A shaken President Hindenburg, 86 years old, was easily convinced that the nation was on the verge of a communist revolution, was induced by Hitler to sign an emergency decree suspending the basic rights of the citizens for the duration of the emergency. This decree also authorized the Reich government to assume full powers in any federal state whose government proved unable to restore public order, ordered death or imprisonment for a number of crimes including some newly invented such as resistance to the decree itself. The decree did not include any provision guaranteeing an arrested person a quick hearing, access to legal counsel, or redress for false arrest. Those arrested often found their detention extended indefinitely without legal proceedings of any kind.

On March 2, Hitler was asked by a corespondent of the Daily Express whether the suspension of liberties was permanent. He answered in the negative saying that full rights would be restored as soon as the Communist danger was over. The reality was that the decree of February 28th established what would become the normal order of things under National Socialism - arrest on suspicion, imprisonment without trial, the horrors of the concentration camps. This condition would persist until the end of the Third Reich.

-- Soren Swigart, "The Reichstag Fire", from The World at War historical series.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Rep. Jan Schakowsky "Convinced" 2004 Election Stolen

Bradblog, as ever, has the goods.
TAKE BACK AMERICA CONFERENCE - June 14, 2006

Remarks of Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky

My topic today is "Closing the Deal." Closing the deal. I believe that on November 7, Democrats can be in the majority in the Congress - both Houses. And I believe that the activists and leaders who are here today can make it happen. I am optimistic - cautiously optimistic.

At long last, nearly everyone in our country sees what we've seen for a long time. Let's just tick off a few of the problems of their own making that the Republicans face, beginning but not ending with the calamitous war in Iraq. During the time of this panel - one hour - your tax dollars will have contributed to the $11 million the U.S. spends in Iraq every hour - 24/7. And between Iraq and Afghanistan , the equivalent of one battalion of soldiers (600) is killed or injured each month. Move on to gas prices, heating costs, unaffordable health care, the Medicare Part D disaster. Katrina, Guantanamo Bay, Halliburton, Abu Ghraib; college tuition, the NSA spying on everyone (and proud of it), tax cuts just for the Paris Hiltons, drilling in ANWR, global warming, the 9/11 Commission failing grades, Dubai ports deal, stagnant or falling wages, everyone around the world hates us, Jack Abramoff, relentless attacks on women's reproductive rights, labor unions, affirmative action, gays and lesbians, civil rights and civil liberties. You know, after a while it starts to add up. These guys have got to go.

It's no wonder the President's approval, even after getting al Zarqawi, continues to slip. I don't know if Bush is the worst President in history. I'm not an expert on the Presidents. As far as I know, there may have been less intellectual Presidents. There may have been more incompetent Presidents or one or two with worse judgment or more reckless or less curious. I don't know about Chester Arthur or Millard Fillmore. Herbert Hoover was certainly delusional about the economy and James Polk allegedly manufacturing the war with Mexico.

But it never mattered as much as it does now. The decisions of the President of the United States, you know, the Decider, have never been more consequential than they are today. While military misadventures of the past certainly claimed many innocent lives, it is only in recent times that the result could be worldwide death and destruction. There may have been Presidents more contemptuous of science, though I doubt it. But nothing else ultimately matters if our planet becomes incapable of sustaining human life. Even the most upscale gated communities can't protect him and his friends. In the most profound ways, this President and his rubber stamp Congress are proving that elections really do matter.

You would think that the real question is how can we lose? The answer is we've already proven it can be done. Even when we win, we lose. Fool me once…or whatever the President tried to say. This is no time to play the fool. We need to close the deal. Our challenge, particularly the challenge of the progressives and activists here at this great conference, is not crafting the overarching thematics of the campaigns. Fortunately, the big theme is change, and the goal to put this failed President on every ballot, so far, seems to be working.

For us, it must all be about execution.

1) First, we must not allow the Republicans to steal the election-again.

2) We have to mobilize the voters who are already with us, and run picture perfect, aggressive, leave no voter behind GOTV, Get Out the Vote campaign.

3) We have to persuade the persuadables. (I'll go more into each of these.)

4) We have to travel. I'll tell you about the Committee of 100 in my district.

5) We need to keep our eyes on the prize - beating the Republicans.

1) Stealing: I apologize for not taking seriously enough the allegations that the 2004 election was stolen. After reading Bobby Kennedy's article in Rolling Stone, "Was the 2004 Election Stolen?", I am convinced that the only answer is yes. He documents how 357,000 Ohio voters, the vast majority Democrats, "were prevented from casting ballots or did not have their votes counted…more than enough to shift the results." Watch for the DCCC to take some very public steps in the near future to ward off a repeat performance. In the meantime, there needs to be a citizens' effort starting now to assess the machines, the ballots, the registration process within each and every election jurisdiction in each and every swing district and state, in the case of Senate races. Where the situation looks perilous, go to the media, raise a stink, demand changes.


What, the democratic process in the hands of American citizens? Perish the thought.

Quote of the Day:

"...he wanted to know if Yang Enterprises could develop a prototype of a voting program that could alter the vote tabulation in an election and be undetectable."

(Republican) Programmer Clint Curtis's sworn affidavit to Congress, describing a meeting between Florida Speaker of the House Tom Feeney (R) and Yang Enterprises, the software company that employed Curtis.

Curtis did write the program, about which his boss Li-Woan Yang allegedly confided: "This program is needed to control the vote in South Florida."

Thursday, June 15, 2006

I Hurt Myself Today....



Click to view.


15-year-old Ava Lowrey knows how to convey a message. And this is a message that so desperately needs to be heard.

Why is it that, in the name of "bringing freedom to Iraq", so-called "patriotic" Americans would threaten a little kid with rape and murder for airing her point of view?

Quote of the Day:

"For now at least, the forms of a democratic republic remain in place--as, in a parallel way, the residual forms of the Roman Republic remained in place well after its devolution into a militarized imperial autocracy."

--Michael Keefer, "The Strange Death of American Democracy: Endgame in Ohio"

Headlines....

1,113 Veterans Among 11,000 Louisville Homeless

House Approves Another $66 Billion for War

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Henry Rollins: A Love Letter To Ann Coulter

The former singer of Black Flag has an offer for Clouter.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

You're His Last Hope of Survival


The Natural Resources Defense Council has initiated court action to force the Bush "Administration"
to take action to protect the direly threatened polar bear. The extended deadline for public comments ends June 16th. Please take 30 seconds of your time to sign an e-petition; better yet, send a few dollars to help, and tell your friends and relatives:

http://www.savebiogems.org/polar/takeaction.asp

New Kid on the Blog....

If you don't already know, the Washington Beltsider rocks. Give it a read! www.thewashingtonbeltsider.wordpress.com

Support and defend the Constitution Against all Enemies, Foreign or Domestic...



Play the quicktime video here.

Courage in the face of opposition. THAT is the mark of a true hero.

Thank you Lt. Ehren Watada.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Crazy Love






















I can hear her heartbeat from a thousand miles
Yeah the heavens open every time she smiles
Yeah when I come to her that's where I belong
Yeah I'm running to her like a river's song

She gives me love love love love, crazy love
She gives me love love love love, crazy love

She's got a fine sense of humor when I'm feeling low down
And when I come to her when the sun goes down
She take away my trouble take away my grief
Take away my heartache, in the night like a thief.

She gives me love love love love, crazy love
She gives me love love love love, crazy love

Yes I need her in the daytime
Yes I need her in the night
Yes I want to throw my arms around her
Kiss her hug her kiss her hug her tight

And when I'm returning from so far away
She gives me some sweet lovin brightens up my day
Yes it makes me righteous, yes it makes me whole
Yes it makes me mellow down into my soul

She gives me love love love love, crazy love
She gives me love love love love, crazy love
She gives me love love love love, crazy love
She gives me love love love love, crazy love

--Van Morrison. 1970

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Zarqawi and the Psy-Op that was Nicholas Berg's Death....

Those of you who recall the video purported to be Nicholas Berg's death at the hands of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the "Mastermind" whose pelt the US Air Force has recently claimed (and, despite rumors, does not plan to have stuffed and mounted for George Bush's Red House office), may remember some... incongruities that didn't quite add up.

Like the joyous throngs at the toppling of Hussein's statue, the heroic rescue of Jessica Lynch, and the "grateful" "newly liberated" Iraqi woman conveniently on hand to discredit Cindy Sheehan's protests, this whole "victory" story rings a tad hollow, and despite the insistence of the Ministry of Truth, this is undoubtedly just another convenient PR stunt being used to prop up the rapidly evaporating support for the invasion history may well someday come to call Bush's Folly.

A look back at the enigma that was the Berg video:

The Berg Fraud and Other Deceptions
May 17, 2004
Eric A. Smith

Terrorist mastermind Zarqawi has announced his name but hidden his face. The CIA has said it is indeed Zarqawi, but he appears to be reading his own speech from a paper.

The person holding the knife -- allegedly Zarqawi -- has a Black hood at the video's beginning, but there is an edit (the camera time signatures change) and the knifeholder is then wearing a WHITE hood (and no bulletproof vest).

You'll also find the following oddities in the video, which was heavily edited, presumably in a lab or on a PC:

WM-----|-----Video Clock-----|-----Screen Shot
0:00 ---|--- nothing ---|-------Arabic letters
0:05 ---|--- 13:26:24 ---|--- Nick Berg speaking
0:09 ---|---- 2:18:33 ---|--- Nick Berg sitting
0:20 ---|---- 2:40:33 ---|--- Speech in Arabic
4:36 ---|---- 2:44:56 ---|--- Speaker pushes Berg over
4:38 ---|--- 13:45:48 ---|--- Decapitation begins
4:43 ---|--- 13:45:52 ---|--- Picture lost
4:44 ---|--- 13:45:59 ---|--- Picture returns, decapitation continues

Are these timestamps from two separate cameras? Is this indicative of an edit -- a "splicing in" of footage? Why are the timestamps so radically out of synch?

Zarqawi has also been reported to have an artificial leg; this is definitely not apparent in the video. Nor is his Jordanian accent, according to experts. Also note the gold ring on the "sinister" (toilet-using) hand -- a definite no-no for muslims.

Then there's US consulate Beth A. Payne's e-mails to Berg's family saying their son was in "US military custody" for 13 days:http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/iraq/2004-05-13-emails-text_x..htm

April 1, 1:26 a.m. (To Michael Berg, Berg's father)
I have confirmed that your son, Nick, is being detained by the U.S. military in Mosul. He is safe. He was picked up approximately one week ago. We will try to obtain additional information regarding his detention and a contact person you can communicate with directly.

April 1, 5:23 a.m. (To Suzanne Berg, Berg's mother)
I have been able to confirm that your son is being detained by the U.S. military. I am attempting to identify a person with the U.S. military or FBI here in Iraq who you can contact directly with your questions.

And, according to CNN, Berg himself had contacted a friend -- Chilean reporter Hugo Infante -- saying he was in US custody:
http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/meast/05/13/berg.friends/

The US Administration denies this, saying he was in Mosul Iraqi police custody, BUT "...police chief Maj. Gen. Mohammed Khair al-Barhawi in Mosul insisted his department had never arrested Berg and said he had no knowledge of the case. ''The Iraqi police never arrested the slain American,'' al-Barhawi told reporters. ''Take it from me ... that such reports are baseless.'' http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/world/iraq/20040513-1057-iraq-berg.html

And of course there are the American orange prisoner jumpsuit and white plastic chair and yellow walls which appear in the video -- exactly as they do at Abu Ghraib, the now-notorious site of the American torture of Iraqi POWs: http://marc.perkel.com/images/berg-chair.jpg
http://marc.perkel.com/images/babe-chair.jpg
http://marc.perkel.com/images/prison01.jpg
http://marc.perkel.com/images/orangegarb.jpg

Next, the hosting website was reported to be in Malaysia, but was discovered to actually located in London:

Says Jackblood.com, which ran a trace:

"...www.al-asnar.net and www.al-asnar.biz have apparently been disabled by 'authorities.' ...the publishers for these sites are located in London, England and Nurnberg, Denmark.

"The addresses began to disappear from the internet listings as we reported this development on The Power Hour Radio Show. Apparently, "Big Brother"; had been listening to the show and didn't like the news at all. The location of the publishers for al-ansar.net appears to be at an Arab Press Building, which appears to be shared by different Arab news publications. The name of the organization is the Arab Press House. Thebuilding is apparently the headquarters for news magazines such as, AlJamilla, Sayidaty, and Al Majallah among others.

The London address is the following:
http://www.al-ansar.net
Arab Press House
Abdel Rahman al-Rashed
184 High Holborn, WCIV78P, London
tel. 020 78318181


The other address is located in Nurnberg, Denmark. It apparently belongs to a man named Omar AbuOmar. His email address is:alansar_alansar@hotmail.com .

The complete mailing address is the following:
http://www.al-ansar.biz
Omar AbuOmar
New Dream St. 33
Nurnberg, Denmark, 42114
Phone: +965.15441211
Email: alansar_alansar@hotmail.com


...these same websites (www.al-asnar.net and www.al-asnar.biz) were the ones that posted the latest Bin Laden audio recording, weeks ago. Despite knowing the website addresses, and potentially the addresses of their respective publishers, the CIA, the FBI, and the Department of Homeland Security did not make any apparent efforts to monitor the websites for uploaded files or internet traffic. Therefore, no arrests were made."

Next, a gun carried by one of the men is a "Gilal" -- an Israeli alternative to the AK- 47. Feyadeen and other insurgents almost universally use AK-47s. The man in the left of the video is standing in the American military stance known as "parade rest", and several of the apparent terrorists are wearing white tennis shoes and bulletproof vests.

At frame 13:46:27, there is an edit and a person with a white ear and a green cap is seen entering from the right. Then the video is re-edited.

Pay attention. This one is definitely a setup.


And then there's this:

Berg beheading: No way, say medical experts
By Ritt Goldstein

American businessman Nicholas Berg's body was found on May 8... but according to what both a leading surgical authority and a noted forensic death expert separately told Asia Times Online, the video depicting the decapitation appears to have been staged.

"I certainly would need to be convinced it [the decapitation video] was authentic," Dr John Simpson, executive director for surgical affairs at the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, said from New Zealand. Echoing Dr Simpson's criticism, when this journalist asked forensic death expert Jon Nordby, PhD and fellow of the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators, whether he believed the Berg decapitation video had been "staged", Nordby replied: "Yes, I think that's the best explanation of it."

...While the circumstances surrounding both the video and Nick Berg's last days have been the source of substantive speculation, both Simpson and Nordby perceived it as highly probable that Berg had died some time prior to his decapitation. A factor in this was an apparent lack of the "massive" arterial bleeding such an act initiates.

"I would have thought that all the people in the vicinity would have been covered in blood, in a matter of seconds ... if it was genuine," said Simpson. Notably, the act's perpetrators appeared far from so. And separately Nordby observed: "I think that by the time they're ... on his head, he's already dead."

Providing another basis for their findings, in the course of such an assault, an individual's autonomic nervous system would react, typically doing so strongly, with the body shaking and jerking accordingly. And while Nordby noted that "they rotated and moved the head", shifting vertebrae that should have initiated such actions, Simpson said he "certainly didn't perceive any movements at all" in response to such efforts.

...broad speculation exists regarding a number of factors surrounding both Berg's death and the video, and its timing in regard to revelations of US prison atrocities.

In a May 13 article, the Arabic newsgroup Aljazeera reported that a Dubai-based Reuters journalist first broke the story, "but while Fox News, CNN and the BBC" were able to secure the video from the "Arabic-only website" that hosted it, Aljazeera was unable to locate it. And also on May 13, the Associated Press (AP) reported that the US Central Intelligence Agency had determined that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was the individual who beheaded Berg.

Since Secretary of State Colin Powell's United Nations presentation of February 5, 2003, al-Zarqawi has been portrayed as the single most dangerous element facing the Bush administration's "war on terror". Powell's UN presentation has since been widely accepted as empty; nevertheless, al-Zarqawi appears to have surpassed even Osama bin Laden as the administration's No 1 terror target. And on May 15, Brigadier-General Mark Kimmitt, the Coalition Provisional Authority's chief Iraq military spokesman, declared that al-Zarqawi will be eventually caught, though that may prove particularly difficult.

...Speaking off the record, intelligence community sources have previously said they believe it "very likely" that al-Zarqawi is indeed long dead. Such a fact makes al-Zarqawi's alleged killing of Berg difficult to reconcile, and there has been broad speculation that blaming al-Zarqawi is an administration ploy. Further anomalies surrounding Berg's death have fueled added speculation.

...Because Iraq's radical Islamists speak in a particular manner, and live by a closely proscribed code, apparent contradictions between these ways and the way Berg's captors appeared has generated speculation. Some observers have speculated on the possibility that the individuals weren't native Arabic speakers. Conversely, it is reported that in Saudi Arabia, where Sharia law allows for beheadings in cases of severe crimes, the condemned is heavily drugged with tranquilizers prior to the execution, reportedly leaving them in a state similar to that which Berg appeared in during parts of the video.

Again, Nordby emphasized that the video "raises more questions than it answers".


As they say in the military, "If it walks like a duck, and talks like a duck, it probably is a CIA psy-op.".

Bully Bolton


Journalist Ian Williams had some interesting insight into UN Deputy Secretary Mark Malloch Brown's speech criticizing "the Bush administration's attempts to simultaneously use and abuse the United Nations" and Ambassador John Bolton's subsequent apoplexy:

"Far from being anti-American, his speech was a call for American leadership in the organization. But he was being old fashioned, referring to the type of leadership that listens, and pulls a team together, rather than its modern Washington version of team play: beating up the other players and running off with the ball whenever the rules do not suit...."

"Ambassador Bolton currently has to persuade the other members of the Security Council, whose votes he has dismissed as irrelevant, to make the UN that he thinks the US should quit, enforce international law, in which he does not believe, against Iran for non-existent breaches of a Nuclear Non-proliferation treaty that he himself had been trying to sabotage in his previous position as head of disarmament affairs at the State Department.

"Of course Malloch Brown was not so crass as to name Bolton. The clever thing to do would have been to ignore the speech, but since Bolton has all the diplomatic skills of a Bull elephant on heat, he rose to the bait and angrily denounced the Deputy Secretary General, thus reinforcing the latter's credibility with the non-aligned delegations. The Ambassador angrily demanded a retraction from Kofi Annan. The Secretary General happily backed his deputy. I could almost imagine him saying, 'I wished I had said that.' We hope he will."

"Actually, many other, American, speakers at the conference were far more scathing, listing example after example of Washington's refusal to accept international law and conventions. It was a Thoughtcrime Fest that almost had me wondering why Homeland Security wasn't rappelling through the ceiling and kicking in the doors to arrest all, or at least most, of the participants."


There's more, and it's an excellent read.

Quotes of the Day:

"I'm with the Bush-Cheney team, and I'm here to stop the count."
-- John Bolton, bursting into a Tallahassee library during the Florida 2000 election recount.

"People ask what [job] John should get. My answer is, anything he wants."
-- Dick Cheney, after thanking Bolton for his work in Florida.

Friday, June 09, 2006

THE ZARQAWI INVITATION

.

"Blast" from the past: WMD arms broker Donald Rumsfeld visits a new, high-priority client, December 20, 1983.



UNREPORTED: THE ZARQAWI INVITATION
by Greg Palast

They got him -- the big, bad, beheading berserker in Iraq. But, something's gone unreported in all the glee over getting Zarqawi... who invited him into Iraq in the first place?

If you prefer your fairy tales unsoiled by facts, read no further. If you want the uncomfortable truth, begin with this: A phone call to Baghdad to Saddam's Palace on the night of April 21, 2003. It was Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld on a secure line from Washington to General Jay Garner.

The General had arrived in Baghdad just hours before to take charge of the newly occupied nation. The message from Rumsfeld was not a heartwarming welcome. Rummy told Garner, Don't unpack, Jack -- you're fired.

What had Garner done? The many-starred general had been sent by the President himself to take charge of a deeply dangerous mission. Iraq was tense but relatively peaceful. Garner's job was to keep the peace and bring democracy.

Unfortunately for the general, he took the President at his word. But the general was wrong. "Peace" and "Democracy" were the slogans.

"My preference," Garner told me in his understated manner, "was to put the Iraqis in charge as soon as we can and do it in some form of elections."

But elections were not in The Plan.

The Plan was a 101-page document to guide the long-term future of the land we'd just conquered. There was nothing in it about democracy or elections or safety. There was, rather, a detailed schedule for selling off "all [Iraq's] state assets" -- and Iraq, that's just about everything -- "especially," said The Plan, "the oil and supporting industries." Especially the oil.

There was more than oil to sell off. The Plan included the sale of Iraq's banks, and weirdly, changing its copyright laws and other odd items that made the plan look less like a program for Iraq to get on its feet than a program for corporate looting of the nation's assets. (And indeed, we discovered at BBC, behind many of the odder elements -- copyright and tax code changes -- was the hand of lobbyist Jack Abramoff's associate Grover Norquist.)

But Garner didn't think much of The Plan, he told me when we met a year later in Washington. He had other things on his mind. "You prevent epidemics, you start the food distribution program to prevent famine."

Seizing title and ownership of Iraq's oil fields was not on Garner's must-do list. He let that be known to Washington. "I don't think [Iraqis] need to go by the U.S. plan, I think that what we need to do is set an Iraqi government that represents the freely elected will of the people." He added, "It's their country... their oil."

Apparently, the Secretary of Defense disagreed. So did lobbyist Norquist. And Garner incurred their fury by getting carried away with the "democracy" idea: he called for quick elections -- within 90 days of the taking of Baghdad.

But Garner's 90-days-to-elections commitment ran straight into the oil sell-off program. Annex D of the plan indicated that would take at least 270 days -- at least 9 months.

Worse, Garner was brokering a truce between Sunnis, Shias and Kurds. They were about to begin what Garner called a "Big Tent" meeting to hammer out the details and set the election date. He figured he had 90 days to get it done before the factions started slitting each other's throats.

But a quick election would mean the end of the state-asset sell-off plan: An Iraqi-controlled government would never go along with what would certainly amount to foreign corporations swallowing their entire economy. Especially the oil. Garner had spent years in Iraq, in charge of the Northern Kurdish zone and knew Iraqis well. He was certain that an asset-and-oil grab, "privatizations," would cause a sensitive population to take up the gun. "That's just one fight you don't want to take on right now."

But that's just the fight the neo-cons at Defense wanted. And in Rumsfeld's replacement for Garner, they had a man itching for the fight. Paul Bremer III had no experience on the ground in Iraq, but he had one unbeatable credential that Garner lacked: Bremer had served as Managing Director of Kissinger and Associates.

In April 2003, Bremer instituted democracy Bush style: he canceled elections and appointed the entire government himself. Two months later, Bremer ordered a halt to all municipal elections including the crucial vote to Shia seeking to select a mayor in the city of Najaf. The front-runner, moderate Shia Asad Sultan Abu Gilal warned, "If they don't give us freedom, what will we do? We have patience, but not for long." Local Shias formed the "Mahdi Army," and within a year, provoked by Bremer's shutting their paper, attacked and killed 21 U.S. soldiers.

The insurgency had begun. But Bremer's job was hardly over. There were Sunnis to go after. He issued "Order Number One: De-Ba'athification." In effect, this became "De-Sunni-fication."

Saddam's generals, mostly Sunnis, who had, we learned, secretly collaborated with the US invasion and now expected their reward found themselves hunted and arrested. Falah Aljibury, an Iraqi-born US resident who helped with the pre-invasion brokering, told me, "U.S. forces imprisoned all those we named as political leaders," who stopped Iraq's army from firing on U.S. troops.

Aljibury's main concern was that busting Iraqi collaborators and Ba'athist big shots was a gift "to the Wahabis," by which he meant the foreign insurgents, who now gained experienced military commanders, Sunnis, who now had no choice but to fight the US-installed regime or face arrest, ruin or death. They would soon link up with the Sunni-defending Wahabi, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who was committed to destroying "Shia snakes."

And the oil fields? It was, Aljibury noted, when word got out about the plans to sell off the oil fields (thanks to loose lips of the US-appointed oil minister) that pipelines began to blow. Although he had been at the center of planning for invasion, Aljibury now saw the greed-crazed grab for the oil fields as the fuel for a civil war that would rip his country to pieces:

"Insurgents," he said, "and those who wanted to destabilize a new Iraq have used this as means of saying, 'Look, you're losing your country. You're losing your leadership. You're losing all of your resources to a bunch of wealthy people. A bunch of billionaires in the world want to take you over and make your life miserable.' And we saw an increase in the bombing of oil facilities, pipelines, of course, built on -- built on the premise that privatization [of oil] is coming."

General Garner, watching the insurgency unfold from the occupation authority's provocations, told me, in his understated manner, "I'm a believer that you don't want to end the day with more enemies than you started with."

But you can't have a war president without a war. And you can't have a war without enemies. "Bring 'em on," our Commander-in-Chief said. And Zarqawi answered the call.

**********

Greg Palast is the author of Armed Madhouse out this week from Penguin Dutton, from which this is adapted.

Armed Madhouse: Who's Afraid of Osama Wolf?, China Floats Bush Sinks, the Scheme to Steal '08, No Child's Behind Left and other Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Class War. Order it now.

Quote of the Day:

"Don't you think that idea is a little half-baked?
"Oh no, Dad, it's completely baked."

William Daniels, Dustin Hoffman, The Graduate

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Iraq PM: "Al-Zarqawi Killed; Hope for GOP Campaign"

From the BBC:

Zarqawi killed in Iraq air raid

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki has announced that militant leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has been killed.
"Today we have managed to put an end to Zarqawi," Mr Maliki said, sparking sustained applause.

The Jordanian-born leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq was considered the figurehead of the Sunni insurgency. Reports say he was killed in an air raid near Baquba.

Al-Qaeda in Iraq has been blamed for scores of bombings that have killed hundreds of Shias and US forces.

The head of US-led forces in Iraq, General George Casey, said Zarqawi's body was identified through fingerprints and facial recognition.


This isn't the first or even the second time, of course.

Hmm, why on Earth would anybody want to spread false reports about something like this? Who knows?

Hooray! Now we can declare victory and get the Hell out, right?

Errr... maybe not.

But for some reason, it's become really damned difficult to find out just what's going on there right now anyway.

I guess we just have to trust our glorious leaders. Because, as everyone knows, they only have the best interests of the American people at heart.

Close Your Eyes and Just Listen




Standup comedic genius Frank Caliendo BECOMES George Bush.... Amazing.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Ann Clouter Beats up on 911 Widows

And somebody please get this poor woman a cheeseburger.

'Tis but a Scratch (on the surface)....




The good Matt Stoller at MyDD is asking for contributions to his Republican Pervert Open Thread, so do head over and add your findings. Last year we ran a brief blurb on a few similar examples, but the list is much, MUCH more extensive than you could even imagine.

Quote of the Day:

Well you tried it just once and found it alright for kicks,
but now you've found out that it's a habit that sticks
and you're an orgasm addict.
you're an orgasm addict.

--"Orgasm Addict", The Buzzcocks

Monday, June 05, 2006

The Modern Rethuglican Revisited: A Liberal Dose of More Political Art

As George Bush bests Richard Nixon as the most hated occupant of the White House ever (and no, after three years and 300 stories, we still haven't ever attached the word "President" to the manchimp), once again, the little elves at A Liberal Dose have been hard at work lampooning the evil bastards who have currently seized the reins of power in America and are doing their utmost to smash, eat, steal, rape and/or kill everything within reach of their tentacles.

So for your perusing pleasure, we proudly present the newest gallery of our own homespun subversive art.

peace,
Eric

Mentally deficient

Unevolved

Torture apologists

tyrants

tyrantesses

War Profiteers

Warmongers

Blowhards

Fundamentalist nutcases

psychopaths

prigs

pathological liars

malodorous

megalomaniacs

Ineffectual

Infantile

Drug addicts

Destructive

Corporate puppets

Bumblers


Quotes of the Day:

"Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is." -- Governor George W. Bush, 1999

"You can support the troops but not the president" -- Tom Delay, 1999

"[The] President... is once again releasing American military might on a foreign country with an ill-defined objective and no exit strategy. He has yet to tell the Congress how much this operation will cost. And he has not informed our nation's armed forces about how long they will be away from home. These strikes do not make for a sound foreign policy." -- Rick Santorum, 1999

"If we are going to commit American troops, we must be certain they have a clear mission, an achievable goal and an exit strategy." -- Karen Hughes, on behalf of George W. Bush

"I had doubts about the bombing campaign from the beginning...I didn't think we had done enough in the diplomatic area." -- Trent Lott, 1999

"Well, I just think it's a bad idea. What's going to happen is they're going to be over there for 10, 15, maybe 20 years" -- Joe Scarborough, 1999

"I cannot support a failed foreign policy. History teaches us that it is often easier to make war than peace. This administration is just learning that lesson right now. The President began this mission with very vague objectives and lots of unanswered questions. A month later, these questions are still unanswered. There are no clarified rules of engagement. There is no timetable. There is no legitimate definition of victory. There is no contingency plan for mission creep. There is no clear funding program. There is no agenda to bolster our overextended military. There is no explanation defining what vital national interests are at stake. There was no strategic plan for war when the President started this thing, and there still is no plan today" -- Tom Delay, 1999

"Explain to the mothers and fathers of American servicemen that may come home in body bags why their son or daughter have to give up their life?" -- Sean Hannity, Fox News, 4/6/99

"This is President Clinton's war, and when he falls flat on his face, that's his problem." -- Senator Richard Lugar, 1999

"Bombing a sovereign nation for ill-defined reasons with vague objectives undermines the American stature in the world. The international respect and trust for America has diminished every time we casually let the bombs fly." -- Tom Delay, 1999


Quotes courtesy of Republic Of Dogs.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Priceless....




Remind you of anyone?

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Comments fixed....

I didn't realize that this entire time folks had been leaving comments, and that I had to select and enable them before they'd be published. Apologies; all posts are now enabled.

Well, that was the point....

Once again, a few uptighties at Democratic Underground are up in arms about my posting.

"This is offensive on so many levels," whined one. One can only infer that the offense derives from the implication that satisfactory sex is relaxing.

"Sexist. Sex topic. Locked" was the Admin's robotic response.

Um, guys, that's the point.

Glad to know it's working.

My guess?

Sounds like a few folks at DU could do with a fat doob and a good boning.

Please Donate Generously to the "Rent Me a Hotel Room So I Can Give Michelle Maglalang a Good Solid Boning" Drive....


While she may indeed be tragically misguided, morally bankrupt and spiritually tainted, I have long held, and still contend, that the very hot Michelle Maglalang can yet be rehabilitated with a generous, spirited administration of my magic penis. Thus in the spirit of philanthropy, I humbly request that those of you who shake your head in constant wonderment at her online raving help pitch in with a few minor expenses:

1 cheap Vegas motel room: $75
1 bottle of chilled Solichnaya Cristall lemon vodka: $30
1 fat doobie of premium BC bud: $5
1 box of ultra thin ribbed condoms: $10
1 sheer Victoria's Secret lace babydoll: $20


We can look upon it as a coming together of divergent points of view, if you will.

After our night of sheer, unparalleled bliss, Ms. Maglalang will bloom into a kinder, gentler, much less frustrated woman.

Because it Bears Repeating

From Peter Daou:

Rightwing Bloggers Coming Unglued Over Haditha

Michelle Malkin posts an LGF photo of Palestinian children carrying weapons - the implication being? That shooting children is justified?

Glenn Reynolds links to a comment threatening civil war in the US.

At RCP, Jed Babbin writes, "If it were up to Cong. John Murtha, Duke University rape case prosecutor Mike Nifong would be transferred to the Haditha case."

And those are just the big league bloggers. A host of other rightwingers are hyperventilating over Haditha. It's amazing how clueless they are about the left's motives. As I wrote last summer: "The right (broadly speaking) can't fathom why the left is driven into fits of rage over every Abu Ghraib, every Gitmo, every secret rendition, every breach of civil liberties, every shifting rationale for war, every soldier and civilian killed in that war, every Bush platitude in support of it, every attempt to squelch dissent. They see the left's protestations as appeasement of a ruthless enemy. For the left (broadly speaking), America's moral strength is of paramount importance; without it, all the brute force in the world won't keep us safe, defeat our enemies, and preserve our role as the world's moral leader.

War hawks squeal about America-haters and traitors, heaping scorn on the so-called "blame America first" crowd, but they fail to comprehend that the left reserves the deepest disdain for those who squander our moral authority. The scars of a terrorist attack heal and we are sadder but stronger for having lived through it. When our moral leadership is compromised by people draped in the American flag, America is weakened. The loss of our moral compass leaves us rudderless, open to attacks on our character and our basic decency. And nothing makes our enemies prouder. They can't kill us all, but if they permanently stain our dignity, they've done irreparable harm to America.

The antiwar critique of Iraq is that it is an immoral war and every resulting death is a wrongful one. Opponents of the war view the invasion and occupation as a dangerous and shameful violation of international law. Iraq saps our moral strength and the sooner we leave the better. Opposing the invasion on the grounds that the administration lied its way into it, they see every subsequent death, American or foreign, as an ethical travesty and a stain on America's good name."

Meet Perfesser Steve Brady....

Steve Brady, USAF (Ret), is, sadly, indeed a professor of Logistics.

I say "sadly" because the punctuation- and spelling-challenged Mr. Brady is being paid to "teach" his students such wonderful "facts" as that recent glaring election inconsistencies can be chalked up to the horrible unreliability of exit polling and that Americans actually LIKE being spied upon.

An Air Force bean-counter safely sheltered from combat, Brady is quick to anonymously snipe at veteran Randi Rhodes for her highly public political stances. But his blog, and as far as I can discern, his "tutelage", consists of repetitively biased, rightwing, fundamentalist ramblings that somehow always manage to turn into examples of how clever he is.

His one-trick modus operandus consists of finding some writer and sifting through the words like a starving dumpster-diver until he finds some minor point over which to triumphantly shout "AHA!" and pointing out yet again to his students how clever he is, before a typical ending of "class dismissed" or the equivalent. Unfortunately, he's not quite clever enough to recognize the inconsistencies in claiming to be a "Christian" while supporting the state-sanctioned wholesale extermination of human beings.

Here's hoping his students emerge relatively undamaged.

Quote of the Day:

"I live in the Managerial Age, in a world of "Admin." The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid "dens of crime" that Dickens loved to paint. It is not done even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clean, carpeted, warmed and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voices. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern."

--C. S. Lewis

Friday, June 02, 2006

Meet Th' Perfeser....

Some anonymous, comma-use challenged "Perfeser" has decided to wax coherent and use me as his personal shining example of the "lyin' heathen media bastards". Lacking the proximity to boot him in the nuts, I have to settle for the metaphoric equivalent (albeit with a few haste-induced misspellings); to wit:

blah blah blah go fuck yourself blah

Who knows; perhaps this sad tool's not even a real professor. I certainly hope that's the case, as any students he might have are being exposed to the some seriously mind-warping distortions of reality.

Salute to the General.

Verily he doth rock. He is the keeper of the holy hand grenade known as satiric mirth. Forsooth, he smiteth the Pharisees and the hypocrites in the name of our good Lord, and doth boot soundly in the yarbles those who would seek to use his name in vain.

That in great hoots of laughter we might snort forth from our nostrils the morning coffee we imbibeth, he doth toil long.

Blessed be the General, from whom we have shamelessly and hamfistedly stolen our badly cobbled-together CSS template.

Muzzling Government Whistleblowers

From the Alliance for Justice:

For the nation's 21 million government workers, yesterday was not a particularly good day. In an opinion authored by Justice Kennedy and joined by the rest of the emerging conservative bloc (Roberts, Alito, Thomas and Scalia), the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that the First Amendment offers no protection against retaliation to public employees who, in the course of their duties, blow the whistle on waste, fraud or corruption. Public auditors fired after discovering and disclosing the embezzlement of municipal funds? Police officers demoted after reporting illicit activities by public officials? County engineers terminated after revealing that contractors' work wasn't up to snuff? None of them enjoy constitutional protection any longer. Nor do any other government workers in a dizzying array of whistleblower scenarios.

The decision in Garcetti v. Ceballos was the first where Justice Alito cast the deciding vote. The decisiveness of that vote, and the possibility that the result might have been different if Justice O'Connor were still around, is underscored by the fact that the case had to be re-argued following Justice Alito's ascension to the Court. Re-argument was presumably necessary only because, after Justice O'Connor's departure, Justice Alito was needed to break a 4-4 tie. Justices Stevens, Souter and Breyer each wrote dissents. Justices Ginsburg and Stevens joined in Justice Souter's opinion.
Alliance for Justice is a national association of environmental, civil rights, mental health, women's, children's and consumer advocacy organizations. Since its inception in 1979, the Alliance has worked to strengthen the public interest community's ability to influence public policy and foster the next generation of advocates, by:

monitoring and investigating judicial nominations at all levels of the federal branch; encouraging public participation in the confirmation process; raising public awareness about the significant impact the federal judiciary has on the country; strengthening the capacity of the public interest community to influence public policy; assisting nonprofits through technical assistance, workshops, tools and information; increasing foundation support to organizations that seek to influence policy and public opinion through workshops, examples of documents, and technical assistance; and annually, during the opening of the Supreme Court's session, uniting student activists on college, university, and law school campuses nationwide.

Quote of the Day:

"As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there's a twilight where everything remains seemingly unchanged, and it is in such twilight that we must be aware of change in the air, however slight, lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness."

--Justice William O. Douglas

Thursday, June 01, 2006

"Bein' Prez-nint's Lahk a Box a' Chah-klits...."

Texas Seeks 20 Years for Teens Who Fed Pot to Teachers

Not yet out of high school, Joey Tellini faces prison until he's 40 for spiking the punch bowl at the Homecoming Dance.

After delivering a bag of pot-laced muffins to their high school faculty, 18-year-old Joey Tellini and Jan Walker have been charged with five felony counts of assault in Dallas, and the prosecutors are hoping to bury them. From the >yes you're reading it right< "Terrorism Knowledge Base":

Walker, who attends a nearby Catholic school, and Tellini, 18, were each charged with five felony counts of assault on a public servant, each of which carries penalties of two to 10 years in prison. Because of the presence of illegal drugs, Dallas County prosecutors are seeking an upgrade to the charges that could raise the maximum sentence to 20 years, district attorney spokeswoman Rachel Raya said.
Which just brings to mind once again the reason we're in Bush's glorious war -- the evildoers "hate us for our freedoms". A commodity so popular at home, we've been exporting it worldwide, and exploring vast new domestic markets.

And here's a comforting observation from Salon columnist Dr. Allen C. Roland:

CHENEY & RUMSFELD WILL NOW CONTROL ALL INTELLIGENCE
With the appointment of Lt. Gen. Michael Hayden, Porter Goss's successor as head of the CIA, military officers will control all the major spy agencies and report directly to Darth Vader himself - Dick Cheney.

Remember the infamous Office of Special Plans that was instituted by the pentagon and fed tainted intelligence directly to Dick Cheney, bypassing the CIA and was never investigated by the 9/11 commission ~ well, quess what ~ we are heading in the same direction again except this time its target is Iran and protecting the Cheney/Rumsfeld/Bush neocon cabal at all costs.
Read on.

Freedom marches on. Brought to you by Halliburton, Raytheon and Bechtel.

Quotes of the Day:

"War is Peace."
-- George Orwell, 1984

"When we talk about war,
we're really talking about peace."
-- George W. Bush

Robert Newman Standup: A 100 Year History of Oil

You'll want to see this. Hate to overuse a wornout phrase, but I think you'll agree:

Brilliant.

Tip of the hat to the ever-superb Information Clearing House.

Quote of the Day:
"When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animals have been hunted, when all the waters are polluted, when all the air is unsafe to breathe, only then will you discover you cannot eat money."
--Cree Proverb