Saturday, September 30, 2006

Torture Bill's "Get Out of Jail Free Card" for Bush

I know I mentioned this before but just in case anybody missed it...
The secret buried in the Torture Bill [VIDEO]: "Buried deep within the torture bill is this:

... no court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider any other action against the United States or its agents relating to any aspect of the detention, transfer, treatment, trial, or conditions of confinement of an alien detained by the United States who--

`(A) is currently in United States custody; and

`(B) has been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as an enemy combatant or is awaiting such determination.'.

(b) Effective Date- The amendments made by subsection (a) shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act, and shall apply to all cases, without exception, pending on or after the date of the enactment of this Act which relate to any aspect of the detention, transfer, treatment, trial, or conditions of detention of an alien detained by the United States since September 11, 2001.

In English: Any war crime committed by the Bush administration since 9/11 cannot be prosecuted."

Congressional Republican in Charge of Protecting Children Seduces Them Instead

More of the Republican's finest:
Republican Mark Foley resigns U.S. House seat: "Six-term Republican Rep. Mark Foley of Florida resigned from the U.S. Congress on Friday following reports he sent sexually inappropriate e-mails to underage male congressional interns.

Foley, chairman of the House caucus on missing and exploited children, said he would resign after ABC News reported he sent messages to current and former congressional pages with references to sexual organs and acts.

'Today I have delivered a letter to the Speaker of the House informing him of my decision to resign from the U.S. House of Representatives, effective today,' said Foley, who is single, in a statement.

'I am deeply sorry and I apologize for letting down my family and the people of Florida I have had the privilege to represent.'"

(09-30-2006) Where is the outrage Fox News on this?
The House in 2005 passed Foley-sponsored legislation that would subject child sex offenders to stringent monitoring requirements and tough penalties for failing to comply with registration requirements. "We track library books better than we do sexual predators," Foley said.

Foley said he was "sorry" today after the emails to the former page were revealed. In the emails, sent from his AOL account, Foley had made repeated references to sexual organs and sex acts.

In Congress, Foley has been considered one of the foremost critics of child pornography and pedophiles. Among other measures, he succeeded in getting a law passed that allowed organizations like the Boy Scouts of America and Boys and Girls Clubs to have access to FBI fingerprint background checks to help protect children.
Washington was rife with speculation that Foley resigned so quickly Friday because there might be similar e-mail or instant messages lying in the hard drives of other teens in the capital. But another reason is just as likely: Foley, a bachelor, has frequently worked to squelch rumors that he is gay. In 2003, he called a press conference expressly to insist that he would not answer questions about his sexuality as he prepared for a possible, but ultimately aborted Senate run in 2004.

Friday, September 29, 2006

"Mommy, What's Waterboarding?"

Now THIS is a good one:
"Remember the great harm done to the moral core of our nation when, according to the excited news reports following Kenneth Starr's great work in life, children were asking their parents what oral sex was? Neither do I. But children can now ask their parents what torture is, how waterboarding works, and when exactly torture is a good thing. 'Mommy, we're going to play enemy combatant. Can I have some pliers to pull out Geoffrey's fingernails?'

Can I just say, to the Representatives and Senators who just voted to overturn (or allow George Bush to 'interpret') the Geneva Conventions and half the Bill of Rights – and I say this as mildly as I know how – WAKE THE HELL UPYOU COMPLICIT FASCIST MORONS; BUSH HAS CAMPS PLANNED FOR SOME OF YOU, AND DANTE HAS A CIRCLE RESERVED FOR THE REST. Oh, and one more thing: oral sex feels GOOD. Torture HURTS LIKE HELL. Got it? The world needs more sex, less sadism. What exactly are you unclear on?"
Anybody notice how home-schooling and lax gun control has NOT stemmed the tide of crazy people figuring out that schools are repositories of weak humans from which to grab some easy victim/hostages? Well, wait until the New American Export of Standard Behavior for those who will not comply--TORTURE--infects our national bloodstream.

(Insert epithets here)!!!!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Republicans Weak on Their "Terror" War

In 2001 Republican's refused to hear warning voices of those around Richard Clarke and it cost Americans the worst terrorist strike on American soil EVER. Opposition voices were ignored going into Iraq and now that occupation is under-defended AND costing Americans 2 billion dollars every WEEK, yet the very same Republicans call opposition ideas of a plan for victory "cutting and running." Beside the daily uncovering of Republican corruption and law-breaking, can Americans afford more Republican stalling on the largest issue they say they are credible--your family's safety?
LA Times, AP reported Boehner comment that Dems refused to "work with" GOP on detainee bill, ignored 15 blocked Dem amendments: "The Los Angeles Times and the Associated Press reported House Majority Leader John Boehner's suggestion that Democratic opponents of the GOP-backed detainee legislation were refusing to 'work with Republicans.' Neither outlet noted that Democrats had offered 15 amendments to the bill that were barred from consideration by the Republican-led House Rules Committee."

Republicans Weaken Torture Bill

Really, they below to understand how to deflect ANY Republican election strategy attack...and use the new Torture Bill (House resolution HR 6166, Senate bill is S 3930) to see how.

First, the Torture Bill is not Rove's October surprise, but it is a prong of RNC election strategy:
Bush urges Senate to follow House, pass detainee bill: "President Bush urged the Senate on Thursday to follow the House lead and approve a White House plan for detaining and interrogating terrorism suspects, saying, 'The American people need to know we're working together to win the war on terror(ism).'"
Okay, now how does this legislation coming up act as an elections tactic for Republicans? Let's look at what is happening.

First Bush says:
"People shouldn't forget there's still an enemy out there that wants to do harm to the United States," Bush told reporters after the closed-door meeting.
And his main opposition is legislators who agree that:
"...the measure with the exception of whether to allow terrorists the right to protest their detentions in court. Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pennsylvania, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, contends the ability to file a "habeas corpus" petition is considered a fundamental legal right and necessary to uncover abuse.
...and what will happen is:
Four Democrats and Specter were being given opportunities to offer amendments Thursday, but all were expected to be rejected along party lines.
...because (additionally) some:
Democrats have said the legislation would give the president too much latitude when deciding whether aggressive interrogations cross the line and violate international standards of prisoner treatment.
Now, given all of that and because:
The legislation would establish a military court system to prosecute terror suspects, a response to the Supreme Court ruling in June that Congress' blessing was necessary. While the bill would grant defendants more legal rights than they had under the administration's old system, it nevertheless would not include rights usually granted in civilian and military courts.
For nearly two weeks the White House and rebellious Republican senators have fought publicly over whether President Bush's plan would give a president too much authority. But they struck a compromise last Thursday, and Republicans are hoping approval will bolster their effort to cast themselves as strong on national security, a marquee issue this election year.
The measure also provides extensive definitions of war crimes such as torture, rape and biological experiments, but gives the president broad authority to decide which other techniques U.S. interrogators may use legally. The provisions are intended to protect CIA interrogators from being prosecuted for war crimes.
Pause here...
...imagine what the Torture Bill allows, think of your brother in Iraq being captured and carted off to Country X then tortured to death and when, under the Geneva Conventions, you go to prosecute those responsible. To cover his ass the X-ian president gets his parliament to pass special provisions shielding the interrogators from having first, tortured and killed your brother (and of course the president himself from having ordered it) and additionally (so he won't have to go through all that bother again) grants himself the right to do anything like it in the future (except he can't use other people's brothers for biological experiments or sex slaves or--well--wait--the part where the president "has the authority to interpret "the meaning and application" of the Geneva Conventions," probably makes that moot...uh, nevermind).

Getting back to the of course:
Democrats' opposition to the bill likely will fuel political attack ads from their Republican challengers as lawmakers go into the Nov. 7 elections.
Ya think? Will accusations sound like this?
...House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Illinois, said in a statement that Democrats who voted against the measure "voted today in favor of more rights for terrorists."
and this?
He added, "So the same terrorists who plan to harm innocent Americans and their freedom worldwide would be coddled, if we followed the Democrat plan."
And because Democrats will respond like this:
Pelosi and other Democrats said the bill would give the president too much power to decide whether interrogation standards go too far.

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, said, "This bill is everything we don't believe in."
Instead of THIS (the Keith Olbermann-style response): Republicans have "voted to institutionalize failed Iraqi policy."

It can and WILL be used to bludgeon democrats across the board.

NOW getting back to "Republicans Weaken Torture Bill" and how that is a claim one could argue, begin from this assumption: by instutionalizing the failed Iraqi policy (fighting over there creates more, not less, terrorists) by way of institutionalizing the most internationally provocative, least succesful and clearly unproven methods of information extraction, i.e. torture, bill is actually weakened beacause it is simply not good international policy. In fact the entire exercise of the bill is creating Get-Out-Of-Jail-Cards for everyone who went along with the Criminal-in-Chief (can't say he's not loyal).

The useful strategic moral to this exercise is-learning to deflect ANY Republican election strategy.

These are the steps:
  • deny the premise (do NOT defend against it)
  • reframe the argument into their weakness--hint: it is the issue their tactics against your issue is hiding--for example their attack phrase for pro-peace Democrats is "cut and run." That phrase is the most negative frame of our best strength--the ability to create a workable plan to win the peace in Iraq--as opposed to Republican's failing, endless occupation (i.e. "stay and kill").
  • do it in understandable emotional and real-world terms; avoid abstraction
Oh, and PLEASE S-T-O-P using and supporting the truncation of terrorism, terrorist, terroristic et al into "terror" unless you are framing "terror" against them.

Americans Authorize Torture and a Monarchy--Humanitarian Democratic Experiment Slaughtered By Cowards

Really. I never was a part of the "Blame America First" crowd (although I've always been a member of the "America Take Responsibility for it's Own Action's Outcomes" crowd).

If this abomination of a bill passes, America will become a hated international disgrace and the terrorists who--according to the administration "hate us for our freedom" will, having driven a morally bankrupt and solution desperate government to finish the job a cadre of hijackers began on 9/11, have won--and at the expense of 300 billion to you and I (and of course that is just the financial loss).

Oh, and the red lettered items are the Bush-Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free cards. Call your representatives and see what you have to do to get a Free card for the speeding ticket you got last time--clearly now law can be written to exclude the "right" people from being held acountable for the ones they break (tell them you thought you were chasing Osama)--if Bush can receive a defacto pardon with a little rewritten law, then certainly so can you...

The huge red lettered item denotes provisions that start the slide into the American Dark Ages...
House passes terrorism detainee bill backed by Bush:

-- Requires that a defendant being tried by military commission have access to any evidence given to a jury.

-- Drops a section of the administration's previous proposal that stated an existing ban on cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment satisfies the nation's obligations under the Geneva Conventions.

-- Prohibits 'grave breaches' of the Geneva Conventions. Defines grave breaches as acts such as torture, rape, biological experiments and cruel and inhuman treatment.

-- Notes the president has the authority to interpret 'the meaning and application' of the Geneva Conventions.

-- Allows hearsay evidence.

-- Allows coerced testimony if the statement was acquired before a 2005 ban on cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment and a judge finds it to be reliable. Bans coerced statements taken after the 2005 ban went into effect if it violates constitutional definitions of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.

-- Bars individuals from protesting violations of Geneva Conventions standards in court.

Andrew Sullivan--"Walking Back" on "Tyranny"

Well put...
Andrew Sullivan | The Daily Dish: "Walking Back" on "Tyranny"?: "Put all that together and you really do have the danger of taking emergency measures for wartime and transforming a peace-time constitution into an essentially martial system, where every citizen or non-citizen can be apprehended at will and detained without charge. I repeat: this is a huge deal. It really should be a huge deal for conservatives who care about restraining government power. Its vulnerability to abuse is enormous; sanctioned torture, history tells us, never remains hermetically sealed. It always spreads. It eats away at decency and law and civility. If the president sincerely believes that torture is our most potent weapon in this war, and that habeas corpus is a quaint relic from the past, then we are in far greater peril than even the most dire pessimists believe."

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Let's Get Serious

David Sirota keeps his eye on the ball, i.e., the economic effects of the story under the fog of distractions:
Come see the new exotic breed of human being: The Washington Serious Policy Thinker: "Come see the new exotic breed of human being: The Washington Serious Policy Thinker
The New York Times has a story on Rep. Nancy Johnson (R-CT) and how, facing a serious challenge to her seat, she's resorted to some of the most wild-eyed, desperate tactics seen in a long time. The most telling part of the story, however, is not Johnson's nauseating fearmongering - but the Times' characterization of her. It tells you everything you need to know about how the metrics many Beltway journalists use to define who is a Serious Person and who isn't.

Here's the excerpt I am talking about:

'In her 12 terms in Congress — the longest tenure in the state’s history — [she] has earned a reputation as a serious policy thinker on health care and social programs.'

The Times, of course, doesn't tell us who she's 'earned' this reputation from, only that she's supposedly 'earned' it. In lieu of a source on this characterization, we can only assume that it is the Times' reporter that considers her a Serious Policy Thinker on health care and social programs. And that begs the uncomfortable question - what objective facts can a Washington reporter cite in justifying calling someone like Johnson Serious?"

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

"This Hearing Could Change Our Country"

Clinton had as much negative coverage over a stained blue dress and landed himself an impeachment. I guess it's true. Americans will have to wake up to Bush slaughtering the family dog in their living room before they get the message the man is a freaking nut job AND he's running their country (into the ground):
Sen Reid says "This Hearing Could Change Our Country": "Yesterday the Democratic Policy Committee met and heard testimony from three extremely distinguished military officers (their names below link to their written statements:)

Major General John R.S. Batiste - U.S. Army (Retired) - retired November 1, 2005 after a 31-year career in the United States Army. His 'most recent assignment was as commanding general of the 1st Infantry Division from August 2002 to June 2005' in Kosovo and then in Iraq where 'the division was deployed to north-central Iraq from February 2004 until February 2005, and included 22,000 soldiers from active and reserve component units from throughout the United States.'

Major General Paul D. Eaton - U.S. Army (Retired) - served a 33-year career in the United States Army. 'His most recent operational assignment was Commanding General of the command charged with reestablishing Iraqi Security Forces.'

Colonel Thomas X. Hammes - U.S. Marine Corps (Retired) - retired after a 30-year career in the United States Marine Corps. 'He participated in stabilization operations in Somalia and Iraq as well as training insurgents in various places... His final tour in the Marine Corps was as Senior Military Fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies, National Defense University. He has lectured widely at U.S. and International Staff and War Colleges.'"
UPDATE 09-28-2006 And what do Dems get for their exposure of the dangerous truth to the public? Well of course, a THREAT from Republicans!
Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.) is threatening to punish Democrats for using an Appropriations Committee room for an unofficial hearing on Iraq oversight if it happens again.
“They better stop this,” the Mississippi Republican said. “This will be the last one or there will be retribution.”

Monday, September 25, 2006

Kurtz Highlighted Clinton's "Finger-Wagging," Ignored Substance of Response

Well of course...Kurtz highlighted Clinton's "finger-wagging" Fox interview, ignored substance of his response to Wallace:
"In discussing former President Clinton's interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday, Howard Kurtz wrote in his column that Clinton gave an 'impassioned, finger-wagging answer' to Wallace's question about why he failed to 'do more ... and put [Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda] out of business.' On CNN's Reliable Sources, Kurtz asserted, '[I]t would seem that ... the former president just went overboard.' But in neither instance did Kurtz indicate that Clinton gave a substantive defense of his administration's anti-terror efforts in response."
That's because Kurtz would have had to include that (Clinton) substance:
"I'm being asked this on the Fox network. ABC just had a right-wing conservative run in their little Pathway to 9/11, falsely claiming it was based on the 9/11 Commission report, with three things asserted against me directly contradicted by the 9/11 Commission report. ...

"And I think it's very interesting that all the conservative Republicans, who now say I didn't do enough, claimed that I was too obsessed with bin Laden. All of President Bush's neo-cons thought I was too obsessed with bin Laden. They had no meetings on bin Laden for nine months after I left office. All the right-wingers who now say I didn't do enough said I did too much -- same people. ...

"...I worked hard to try to kill him. I authorized a finding for the CIA to kill him. We contracted with people to kill him. I got closer to killing him than anybody has gotten since. And if I were still president, we'd have more than 20,000 troops there trying to kill him. ...

"Now, I've never criticized President Bush, and I don't think this is useful. But you know we do have a government that thinks Afghanistan is only one-seventh as important as Iraq. ...

"And you ask me about terror and al Qaeda with that sort of dismissive thing? When all you have to do is read Richard Clarke's book to look at what we did in a comprehensive, systematic way to try to protect the country against terror. ...

"And you've got that little smirk on your face and you think you're so clever. But I had responsibility for trying to protect this country. I tried and I failed to get bin Laden. I regret it. But I did try. And I did everything I thought I responsibly could.

"The entire military was against sending Special Forces in to Afghanistan and refueling by helicopter. And no one thought we could do it otherwise, because we could not get the CIA and the FBI to certify that al Qaeda was responsible while I was President. ...

"They had three times as much time to deal with it, and nobody ever asks them about it. I think that's strange."

Christian Nationalist Legislation Would Bar Awards of Attorneys Fees

This is a PERFECT example of the Christian Nationalist (those who believe America is a Christian nation) and dominionist movements' work in congress to undermine seperation powers of the Constitution, including ammendments.

By a perverse reading of the Constitution, dominionists--those who believe they have a mandate from God to hold dominion over all human institutions until the Second Coming--are undermining the secular Constitution with dribs and drabs of legislation that would create defacto inability for certain of the legal protections in place to be enjoined. In other words, until they can appoint enough Supreme Court judges to interpret the Constitution from the Christian National point of view (as does Scalia--see Damon Pinker's The Theocons) they will simply disable all the components necessary to use the Constitutional ammendment or clause they wish to see abolished. In their case it is every protection FROM religious intervention in any and all governmental affairs. In short--the freedom from and separation from government--and religion.

Undermining Consitutional protections for minorities is the utmost in so-called anti-American "activist" intervention. When will the politicians undertaking this course be called out for being "traitors"?
URGENT: House of Representatives will Vote on Bill THIS TUESDAY to Bar Awards of Attorneys Fees in ALL Establishment Clause Cases: "On Tuesday, the U.S. House of Representatives is expected to debate legislation which would undermine a critical enforcement mechanism that has safeguarded rights and liberties of Americans for more than a century. The Public Expression of Religion Act (H.R. 2679) would gut the longstanding availability of plaintiffs in Establishment Clause cases – and only those cases – to gain their attorneys fees and costs when they prevail in court.

The federal law making attorneys fees available to plaintiffs in constitutional and civil rights cases has never been limited. Even worse, Congress has never attempted to target specific constitutional rights for attack by limiting attorneys fees in cases involving those rights. Our opponents are going on the offensive with a legislative attack designed to slam the courthouse door on all Establishment Clause plaintiffs, including religious minorities. As a result, this is an extremely important, precedent-setting vote on a bill that directly attacks the central work of Americans United and the fundamental values and freedoms Americans United works so hard to defend.

Enforcement of the Establishment Clause is essential for the defense of religious freedom. The protections of the First Amendment, however, do not enforce themselves. The elimination of the availability of attorneys fees in Establishment Clause cases would deter attorneys from taking these cases – even where the government has acted in direct violation of the Constitution. Plaintiffs would be forced to pay their own legal fees and costs in successful Establishment Clause cases, often totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars. Few Americans, including religious minorities, can afford these kinds of costs to protect their most basic rights. "

Bush Failed to Protect Us From Terrorist Attack

We all know it's true but when will we actually come out with the story. Bush knew terrorists were planning attacks and did nothing--he *fired* Clarke--the one man who knew the most and could do the most--why? Political motivation. He--and the House and Senate currently at fault for supporting his *politcal* agenda--need to answer for their crimes against America. Now. Before elections:
Cover-up or Complicity of the Bush Administration? The Role of Pakistan's Military Intelligence Agency (ISI) in the September 11 attacks: "In other words, according to the Indian government intelligence report, the perpetrators of the September 11 attacks had links to Pakistan's ISI, which in turn has links to agencies of the US government. What this suggests is that key individuals within the US military-intelligence establishment might have known about the ISI contacts with the September 11 terrorist 'ring-leader' Mohamed Atta and failed to act."
I need to be clear. I do not support the 9/11 Conspiracy theories. I am stating that Bush had more than enough information and evidence from the Clinton administration to begin immediately on the problem and carry forward those protections. He did not. And he made that decision from cynical political interests--not national securty interests.

Republicans were elected to guide and protect this country for a term--not rule this country for a generation--as they intend. Their policy decisions are calculated to cement their political position, not further the American dream. They must be held accountable.

Spy Agencies Say Iraq War Worsens Terrorism Threat

Spy Agencies Say Iraq War Worsens Terrorism Threat - New York Times: "A stark assessment of terrorism trends by American intelligence agencies has found that the American invasion and occupation of Iraq has helped spawn a new generation of Islamic radicalism and that the overall terrorist threat has grown since the Sept. 11 attacks.

The classified National Intelligence Estimate attributes a more direct role to the Iraq war in fueling radicalism than that presented either in recent White House documents or in a report released Wednesday by the House Intelligence Committee, according to several officials in Washington involved in preparing the assessment or who have read the final document.
National Intelligence Estimates are the most authoritative documents that the intelligence community produces on a specific national security issue, and are approved by John D. Negroponte, director of national intelligence. Their conclusions are based on analysis of raw intelligence collected by all of the spy agencies."

Saturday, September 23, 2006

"Don't Let It Be Iran Next Year..."

There are many satisfactions that come with having a radio show on an Air America affiliate. The one most gratifying for me is a listener sharing a request for his or her voice to be heard by way of a comment. Because I believe that listener feels he or she has reached out to the last beacon of liberal freedom in what, not less then a decade ago, was among the greatest liberal democracies in the world, it behooves me to take that voice and lift it up as high as I humanly can, as long as I can, in all of our names and for all of our sakes.

At this link you can find the rest of the entreaty from which I have clipped just a bit below. It is an entreaty from just one listener of Action Point but she represents thousands who would ask you on this November 7 to take your best patriotic freedom--the right to choose your representative government by ballot--and choose wisely:
If you voted to be “strong on terror” think of the lives you yourself have terrorized over the last two years, including innocent civilians in bombed and war-torn countries and all the innocent detainees who’ve been tortured as if a sadist from the Middle Ages were ruling the U.S. instead of someone who pledged on the Bible to uphold the U.S. Constitution and the rule of law. Worldwide terrorist attacks have increased, not decreased because of our actions. (

Don't Pardon This Turkey (and set the bird free too)...

I honestly can not think of language strong enough to describe the depth of my disdain for such a...creature.
Don't pardon this Turkey and set the bird free too.: "This week, the Senate is planning to quietly hold a vote that would pardon President Bush for breaking the law by illegally wiretapping innocent Americans without warrants. According to Senator Leahy, the bill would '...immunize officials who have violated federal law by authorizing such illegal activities.'1

President Bush broke the law, and courts are starting to agree. Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter once said the program was illegal 'on its face.' But he has now caved to pressure from Vice President Cheney, and introduced legislation that marks a new low: the bill justifies everything the president did. Worse, it makes it legal to wiretap Americans, in secret, without warrants or oversight, whenever the administration wants to.2

So far, Democrats and some Republicans are holding strong against the bill, and there are good chances to stop it if enough of us speak up. Can you sign the petition opposing the Republican move to pardon President Bush for breaking the law? "

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Al Franken Makes Money for Dems--Woo-hoo!!!

Way to go Al and Air America Radio!!!
Al Franken's PAC becoming a Democratic force: "A new Democratic powerhouse is emerging in Minnesota this campaign season: comedian Al Franken.

His political action committee, Midwest Values, has raised more than $800,000, which he's giving to Democratic candidates in Minnesota and across the country.

'He's potentially a huge player,' said David Schultz, a professor at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minn., who studies money in politics.

Schultz said that if Franken spent all the political money he was raising, his group would be one of the 'top two or three PACs expending money in the state of Minnesota.'"

Monday, September 18, 2006

OMG!!! “Hotel Minibar” Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines

I don't know whether to laugh or cry, or in which order to do both.

Let's see, some winger will comment that this is no big deal. Many same-model car keys open same-model cars. That doesn't mean your car will be stolen. Unless of course you're driving a Lamborghini and yea, since whoever props his (or her) feet on that Oval Office desk influences the fortunes of those who can afford a Lamborghini, it matters.
“Hotel Minibar” Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines: "Like other computer scientists who have studied Diebold voting machines, we were surprised at the apparent carelessness of Diebold’s security design. It can be hard to convey this to nonexperts, because the examples are technical. To security practitioners, the use of a fixed, unchangeable encryption key and the blind acceptance of every software update offered on removable storage are rookie mistakes; but nonexperts have trouble appreciating this. Here is an example that anybody, expert or not, can appreciate:

The access panel door on a Diebold AccuVote-TS voting machine — the door that protects the memory card that stores the votes, and is the main barrier to the injection of a virus — can be opened with a standard key that is widely available on the Internet.

On Wednesday we did a live demo for our Princeton Computer Science colleagues of the vote-stealing software described in our paper and video. Afterward, Chris Tengi, a technical staff member, asked to look at the key that came with the voting machine. He noticed an alphanumeric code printed on the key, and remarked that he had a key at home with the same code on it. The next day he brought in his key and sure enough it opened the voting machine.

This seemed like a freakish coincidence — until we learned how common these keys are."

US to Cut Funds For Two Renewable Energy Sources

If the technology is good and might siphon cash off the richer guys, cripple it. If the policy raises up competitors, squash it. If the legislation levels the playing field, gut it.

I'm used to the sense of mental whiplash I feel every day now, because every day I read about some policy dump that I know is setting back progress on every front average Joe and Jane Six-Pack depends on. I understand now why that happens daily; because the adminsitration from top to the lowest level dog-catcher is dotted with Christian Dominionists who generally believe that helping the little guy is a sin (or that person would have been born rich--which BTW is the justification for why the kids of the rich should never have to work a day in their lives and still deserve 100% of their inheritance untaxed). You see, generally Christian Dominionists are comprised of a variety of sects that dovetail on a few issues, one being a belief in destiny--the good are born rich, and therefore to help the poor or the less than rich is to challenge God, and nobody so squirelly to believe in the good being born rich in the first place, would have the nads to challenge God.

Although I'm getting used to looking at the policy through that prism (and I might add that it is the first time any of the policy makes sense--in fact so much sense--I am developing an ability to see it coming) I am not feeling any less stressed. In fact I am feeling more. As Max Blumenthal said to me, it's like finding out your government is being run by Scientologists.

US to cut funds for two renewable energy sources: "Out at the Wanapum Dam on the Columbia River, a new turbine is being tested that generates more electricity, but won't kill so many fish - thanks to research dollars from Uncle Sam.

Down in California's Long Valley, on the Sierra Nevada range, federal researchers are working to boost efficiency of geothermal energy, which uses the earth's natural heat to generate power.

But renewable energy advocates may have to kiss goodbye those and other research projects. The US Department of Energy (DOE) is quitting the hydropower and geothermal power research business - if Congress will let it."

If John McCain Condones Torture, Why Isn't He Proud Of It?

John McCain is no "maverick", no individual. He is a whipping boy and with his soiled tail betweeen his legs proved it after taking a beating from Karl Rove in 2000. A man of principle would have changed parties. You can be sure the deal went like this: "Johnny Boy, you play ball now and we'll take care of you later." Well, later is just around the corner and Johnny Boy is in line for his pay back from the the thugs at the RNC.

This sad lapse of 'nads could mean real torture for people he will never have to face. The kind of mind-altering torture to which he was supposedly exposed. Well, since Rove Republicans no longer fear The People, I should not be surprised they feel no qualms about displaying their true colors--yellow.
McCain's Don't Ask Don't Tell Torture Program: "The US Congress is going to effectively legalize torture this week.

Much has been said about the conflict between the 'rebel' McCain/Graham/Warner approach and the Bush demands to reinterpret Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions.

McCain went on TV this morning and spoke in reverent terms about not modifying Geneva, leaving the impression that his bill would protect prisoners.

So John, if your bill goes through, does that mean an end to sleep deprivation, stress positions and waterboarding? Errrr, not exactly...."

Rewarding Bad Behavior Works!

Hell, getting his own set of laws worked when he needed a Presidential election thrown, so why not?
American Civil Liberties Union: "Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter has attracted some good press for his saber rattling on President Bush’s warrantless wiretapping program, but behind the headlines his bill, co-authored with Vice President Dick Cheney, would basically repeal the Fourth Amendment protections that were written into the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in the wake of Watergate. As they say in the East, a sword is useless in the hands of a coward, which really means that empty threats to hold the president accountable are basically useless." king--disgusted.

Thinking Points — Rockridge Institute

Great resource from Rockridge Institute for framing has been up for awhile, but I wanted to point it out anyway...
Thinking Points — Rockridge Institute: "Thinking Points: Communicating our American Values and Vision is the Rockridge Institute's handbook for the grassroots progressive community. The book is now available to order online at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Cody's Books, and has a list price of $10. Additional chapters of the book will be provided here in the coming weeks."

Big Brother, Not Just for Jokes Anymore

I know the wingers are gonna love this. Next up, the "stocks" and public execution?
Big Brother is shouting at you: "Big Brother is not only watching you - now he's barking orders too. Britain's first 'talking' CCTV cameras have arrived, publicly berating bad behaviour and shaming offenders into acting more responsibly.

The system allows control room operators who spot any anti-social acts - from dropping litter to late-night brawls - to send out a verbal warning: 'We are watching you'.

Middlesbrough has fitted loudspeakers on seven of its 158 cameras in an experiment already being hailed as a success. Jack Bonner, who manages the system, said: 'It is one hell of a deterrent. It's one thing to know that there are CCTV cameras about, but it's quite another when they loudly point out what you have just done wrong.

'Most people are so ashamed and embarrassed at being caught they quickly slink off without further trouble.

'There was one incident when two men started fighting outside a nightclub. One of the control room operators warned them over the loudspeakers and they looked up, startled, stopped fighting and scarpered in opposite directions.

'This isn't about keeping tabs on people, it's about making the streets safer for the law-abiding majority and helping to change the attitudes of those who cause trouble. It challenges unacceptable behaviour and makes people think twice.'
Time to revisit that classic cautionary tale, Fahrenheit 451.

U.S. Holds AP Photographer Without Charges

Where is the rule of law, the basis of American moral authority?
U.S. holds AP photographer: "The U.S. military in
Iraq has imprisoned an Associated Press photographer for five months, accusing him of being a security threat but never filing charges or permitting a public hearing.

Military officials said Bilal Hussein, an Iraqi citizen, was being held for 'imperative reasons of security' under
United Nations resolutions. AP executives said the news cooperative's review of Hussein's work did not find anything to indicate inappropriate contact with insurgents, and any evidence against him should be brought to the Iraqi criminal justice system.

Hussein, 35, is a native of Fallujah who began work for the AP in September 2004. He photographed events in Fallujah and Ramadi until he was detained on April 12 of this year.

'We want the rule of law to prevail. He either needs to be charged or released. Indefinite detention is not acceptable,' said Tom Curley, AP's president and chief executive officer. 'We've come to the conclusion that this is unacceptable under Iraqi law, or Geneva Conventions, or any military procedure.'

Hussein is one of an estimated 14,000 people detained by the U.S. military worldwide — 13,000 of them in Iraq. They are held in limbo where few are ever charged with a specific crime or given a chance before any court or tribunal to argue for their freedom."

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Republicans, To Destroy Secularism--Save Yourself, Blame Bush

Yesterday I wrote:
"Do you think that Bush has suddenly spun out of control and with Karl Rove tightly holding the reins of re-election for his party, is now somehow suddenly losing it?

Think again.

Bush may be wildly panicked that he committed international war crimes in water-boarding confessions out of prisoners, and willing to do anything to avoid prosecution, but there's plenty of time for him to cover his ass and election timing now is the key to everything. This is clearly a set-up for an election strategy that will polarize the wedges and magnets going into elections. Republicans holding House control is his protection."
On Friday Joe Scarborough wrote:
Save Yourself, Blame Bush: "I can't help but feel sorry for my old Republican friends in Congress who are fighting for their political lives. After all, it must be tough explaining to voters at their local Baptist church's Keep Congress Conservative Day that it was their party that took a $155 billion surplus and turned it into a record-setting $400 billion deficit.

How exactly does one convince the teeming masses that Republicans deserve to stay in power despite botching a war, doubling the national debt, keeping company with Jack Abramoff, fumbling the response to Hurricane Katrina, expanding the government at record rates, raising cronyism to an art form, playing poker with Duke Cunningham, isolating America and repeatedly electing Tom DeLay as their House majority leader?

How does a God-fearing Reagan Republican explain all that away?

Easy. Blame George W. Bush."
Of course, you GOP candidates can be sure that such attacks will annoy Bush, even though your survival may be all that stands between him and a crazy Democratic chairman launching impeachment hearings. But if you win this fall only to face his stern rebuke next winter, just tell him it was schadenfreude for all the times the White House treated you badly. With any luck, Bush will think you are talking about that Berlin disco that Moammar Gaddafi bombed back in 1986 and then dismiss you like the worthless billy goat he always suspected you were.
See how easy it is to see their strategy when you take the cynical approach and ask WWKD (What Would Karl Do)?

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Test Weapons on American Civilians First

I'm speechless, but on second thought, not surprised.
Test weapons on testy U.S. mobs: "Nonlethal weapons such as high-power microwave devices should be used on American citizens in crowd-control situations before being used on the battlefield, the Air Force secretary said Tuesday.

The object is basically public relations. Domestic use would make it easier to avoid questions from others about possible safety considerations, said Secretary Michael Wynne.

'If we're not willing to use it here against our fellow citizens, then we should not be willing to use it in a wartime situation,' said Wynne. '(Because) if I hit somebody with a nonlethal weapon and they claim that it injured them in a way that was not intended, I think that I would be vilified in the world press.'"
They'll need that crowd control when they declare Marshall Law. By then of course I'll be carrying my own weapon...

Bush Wants 'Clarity' on Interrogations

Whoa, what is really going on here?

Do you think that Bush has suddenly spun out of control and with Karl Rove tightly holding the reins of re-election for his party, is now somehow suddenly losing it?

Think again.

Bush may be wildly panicked that he committed international war crimes in water-boarding confessions out of prisoners, and willing to do anything to avoid prosecution, but there's plenty of time for him to cover his ass and election timing now is the key to everything. This is clearly a set-up for an election strategy that will polarize the wedges and magnets going into elections. Republicans holding House control is his protection.

Some Republicans need a president they can push away from (Bush becomes a wedge) some need one they can cleave to (he becomes a magnet). I know that is not the typical use of the terms but I'm making a point. With Rove the divide and conquer strategy always requires two prongs like a chess strategy--one strategy that compels and one that repels and both in play corner the opponent in a lose-lose play. In Rove's game they prod the Sheeple to the polls for his candidate.

Look to the Republicans' reactions to Bush's proposal, look to their home races, look to the Democrats opposing current stance. Rove is already dumping those candidates he can't control or who can't win through his strategy in favor of those who can (note the RNC backing of Liebermann and Chafee).

In the Rove strategy perception is everything. EVERYTHING. Were that not true, Bush's poll numbers would be much worse. Right now his numbers are going up while congressional numbers are tanking. Why? So Bush can be used in local Congressional races to push down or pull up the candidates Rove has targeted, and if you don't think pork barrel promises and influential committee positions won't be part of the package deal Rove offers those who play his way--for or against the party being irrelevant as long as Rove gets his wins--you're not paying attention.

Dems in races had better be repositioning their strategy with an eye toward the obvious move Rove will be taking next--framing their strength as a weakness and the Republican's weakness as a strength. The stand a candidate takes in opposition to Bush now will be used either way later, so dems need to know the races.

In which races is Republican support for Iraq a weakness or strength--where is that race's Christocrat voting block? What are the ballot measures already in place to bring them out? Remember that the 50 + 1% strategy means that wherever Rove has less than 50% on the candidate alone he will need wedge issues like the marriage ammendment to draw out the Christocrats who while there will also vote the Republican ticket.

And we should be talking about races and individuals whose seats Dems need to win. Not Bush. Bush is kryptonite. He is going to be polarizing and I promise you that in every case it will be the perception of the Democrat up for that seat--not Bush--that is being molded by Rove right now.

This is just smoke and mirrors:
ABC News: Bush Wants 'Clarity' on Interrogations: "Facing a GOP revolt in the Senate, President Bush urged Congress on Friday to join in backing legislation to spell out strategies for interrogating and trying terror suspects, saying 'the enemy wants to attack us again.'

'Time is running out,' Bush said in a Rose Garden news conference. 'Congress needs to act wisely and promptly.'

Bush denied that the United States might lose the high ground in the eyes of world opinion, as former Secretary of State Colin Powell suggested.

'It's unacceptable to think there's any kind of comparison between the behavior of the United States of America and the action of Islamic extremists who kill innocent women and children to achieve an objective,' said Bush, growing animated as he spoke."

Monday, September 11, 2006

ABC 9/11 Docudrama's Right-Wing Roots

Ah--Religious indoctrination, propoganda and infiltration--not just for "Islamo-Fascists" any more.
ABC 9/11 Docudrama's Right-Wing Roots: "Before The Path to 9/11 entered the production stage, Disney/ABC signed David Cunningham as the film's director. Cunningham is no ordinary Hollywood journeyman. He is in fact the son of Loren Cunningham, founder of the right-wing evangelical group Youth With A Mission (YWAM). According to Sara Diamond's book Spiritual Warfare, during the 1980's YWAM 'sought to gain influence within the Republican party' while assisting authoritarian governments in South Africa and Central America. Cunningham, Diamond noted, was a follower of Christian Reconstructionism, an extreme current of evangelical theology that advocates using stealth political methods to put the United States under the control of Biblical law and jettison the Constitution. Cunningham instilled his radical ideology in young missionaries by sending them to 'Discipleship Training School.' A former student of Cunningham's school claimed 'similarities between cult mind controlling techniques and the [Discipleship Training School] program instituted by YWAM.'"


At what point does LYING cease to be acceptable news. When, instead of being noted as inaccurate reporting, does LYING get reported as LYING? When do the paid entertainers posing as newsmen, whose professional employers invest in said LYING, stop being the objects of rapt attention and become the object of rapt ridicule because they are LYING? And when do their corporate employers face charges of attempting to expose Americans to reckless endangerment by intentionally LYING to them on issues that actually affect national security--such as true and factual information?
CNN's Schneider falsely claimed increase in those who blame Clinton for 9-11: "On the September 11 edition of CNN Newsroom, senior political analyst Bill Schneider falsely claimed that a newly released CNN poll found that more Americans are willing to blame former president Bill Clinton for the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks than they were in 2001. In fact, the poll showed just the opposite -- the number of people who blamed Clinton went down from 45 percent to 41 percent."

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Audio File of Rove Republican Dirty Tricks in Arizona LD28 Primary

Rove Republicans--amoral political powergrabbers--have launched the first classic Rove attack of which I am so far aware, in Arizona.

Late Saturday night, just one day before the primary elections in Arizona, this robotically transmitted message has been broadcast via phone into the homes of Democrats throughout Legislative District (LD) 28 of Ted Downing, the target of the attack.

Below is the Democratic Party of Pima County's press release rebuttal to the Republican-sponsored message, but before you read it just let me say this: this is just the beginning of what will be an extremely nasty election season. Rove Republicans can not afford to lose Congress now. Their attack on the liberal middle class is not yet complete. For them it is it imperative that those under that attack--YOU--stay distracted by their shiny object of FEAR until the work of undermining all sources of Democratic party funding and policy support are gutted. To accomplish this they must retain control of both Houses to ensure their social program and deregulation gutting legislation is passed through a White House unfettered by Democratic oversight and investigations. In other words, thieves have broken into your government House, barred the doors and windows to your view, and are now passing your rights out through the back. They have to make sure you can't get in or see what they are doing because it is their goal that by the time they are through, they will have left you with nothing from which you can recover your rights--no laws by which they can be reclaimed becasue there will be no judges who will hear your case or even a law to protect your outcry. That is just one tactic of their strategy to create a zero-opposition playing field to ensure one-party rule--by Rove Republicans--for a generation. Your attention NOW can help derail Rove Republican dirty tricks before it is too late...

Okay, now you can read the Pima Democratic Party press release. Then write AND CALL your local paper's editor AND the Republican party headquarters and DEMAND an explanation, retraction and apology.
For Immediate Release- September 10, 2006

Press Release
Democrats Blast LD28 Republican “Robo” Phone Calls

Tucson, AZ - At the Eleventh hour of Primary Election campaigning, a slimy trick is being pulled on voters in Legislative District 28 (LD 28). Many voters in LD 28 received a automated phone call late Saturday night from a speaker repeatedly railing about the Arizona Democratic Party and State Representative Ted Downing. Downing, an LD 28 Senate Democratic candidate, is running in a contested primary race for the Senate seat currently held by fellow Democrat, Paula Aboud. The automated message makes repeated statements which suggest that the Arizona Democratic Party has taken sides in the primary and is upset with Representative Downing and one or more of his votes.

The “robo-call” message states at the end that it is “paid for by the Arizona Republican Party”, although one must listen to the end of the repetitive message to hear those words. “This is an outrageous set of distortions and outright lies issued under the name of the Arizona Republican Party and it’s no wonder that people are tired and dissatisfied with Republicans being in charge,” said Donna Branch-Gilby, Chair of the Pima County Democratic Party. “The message misrepresents the position of the Arizona Democratic Party regarding Representative Downing, and his voting record, and falsely implies that the Party is taking sides in a primary race between Democrats.”

The Arizona Democratic Party and the Pima County Democratic Party do not endorse any Democrat in a contested Democratic primary and would never issue attack messages against fellow Democrats. The contents of the call are fictitious, created by callers who make false representations. The Arizona and the Pima County Democratic Party take no position in the primary race between Democrats Downing and Aboud.

“The timing and content of this automated message are repugnant to any responsible political entity. It insults the integrity of the political process. The Republicans may be used to eating their own,” said Donna Branch-Gilby, apparently referring to recent TV attack ads by the Republican National Congressional Committee against Republicans in Congressional District 8, “but we Democrats believe that there should be integrity in politics and our government. ”

No Republicans are running for any legislative seats in Legislative District 28.
From now on do as the savy patriot who sent this audio file to me has done. Document and track any and every instance of Rove Republican tactics and get it to Air America Phoenix, this blog or a member of the Democratic party. Log, disseminate and expose these types of dirty tricks immediately. Help election patriots track and expose the dirty tactics of those who would destroy your voice in this country. Expose these dirty tricksters for what they are--traitors--so they are subject to what THEY fear most-- exposure.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Greg Palast: "Just send a file in a cake to the Air America wing of Guantanamo"

So you wonder why--knowing it as early as Thursday morning myself--I did not blog about this sooner? Well, first of all, it is nasty etiquette to "scoop" the regular contributors to your show! Second, I like Greg and have learned that in the blogosphere news travels faster than a dropping Twin Tower. You really want to make sure the guy with the most accurate info "goes" first coz when bloggers are wrong, people get hurt. In this case, the guy in the know was Greg:
"Yes, the rumor’s true. Greg Palast is facing a criminal complaint from the Department of Homeland Security stemming from his filming the Hurricane Katrina investigation for Link TV and Democracy Now. The film’s producer, Matt Pascarella, is also facing the legal wrath of Big Brother.
It appears the complaint is about filming a sensitive national security site owned by Exxon petroleum. It seems that photographing major Bush donors is now a federal offense."
And one (or two) more things: Just 5 days ago Keith Olbermann excoriated the Prez for suggesting Al-Qaida would use the media to turn Americans against well, themselves. How many angles do you think Bush can get out of charging an American journalist, Greg Palast, with strong ties to Britain (BBC) for allegedly enabling terrorists?

According to election integrity defense attorney Paul Lehto, putting a chill on (in other words terrorizing) media journalists just now when alternative reporting elements (bloggers and citizen journalists, activists) are coming forward to directly monitor their government, is just one tactic in their strategic one-party rule campaign.

And yes, tune in to Action Point this Sunday to hear more yourself...

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

High Tech Election Theft in America

Maybe those on our blog who just don't want to believe me about election fraud can start looking at some of the many books being published on the subject. I just had Vickie on my show; here's the work she co-edited. Oh and a word to our winger buddies: "footnotes". Our side's books are copiously foot-noted AND unlike winger author's like Coulter, the footnotes are actually references!
High Tech Election Theft in America: "HACKED! High Tech Election Theft in America presents to the American people the work of eleven experts on the issue of electronic vote fraud, stolen elections, and best solutions to the crisis. It explains how electronic voting has stolen our democracy; how elections in American have been privatized by large corporations; why the mainstream media is barely reporting it; and how imperative it is that Americans start TODAY to reclaim their elections.

Editors Abbe DeLozier and Vickie Karp have a mission; To lift the veil of media blackout on the most heinous crime ever committed against the American people: the theft of their democracy; to create the rightful indignation amongst our citizens; and to clearly show that the only solution is direct and immediate citizen involvement geared toward a return to paper ballot elections, hand-counted at the precinct level. Action steps for citizens are included in this expose."

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Democracy Denied: Meet The New Boss

Why do we fight terrorists "over there"-- those who supposedly hate our freedom and would destroy our way of life when here our way of life--taxation with representation, is being overtly overthrown?

This Republican leadership expends billions of money borrowed from dicators in China and Saudi Arabia every month to supposedly protect democratic elections in Iraq, while dismantling elections in the United States, the only country to which they swore an oath to protect and defend!

Those who work relentlessly against internal attacks on the democratic process fight a spector ofAmerica no less terrifying to behold than that of one in foreign "terrorists" hands. So why are those Americans "blamed first"?
Democracy Denied: Meet The New Boss: "Speaker Dennis Hastert swore in Republican Brian Bilbray even though there were requests for a recount and numerous public protests about the legitimacy of the outcome. According to the San Diego Registrar of Voters, as of June 15th, there were in fact still 2,500 votes to be counted. Evidence reportedly captured from the Registrar’s internet site indicates that on June 13, induction day, there were 12,500 votes uncounted. The San Diego Registrar did not officially certify this election until June 30th. Even when the election was certified, nearly 50% of the votes had not been assigned to the appropriate precincts."
The special election generated immediate controversy when it was discovered that election officials had taken home voting machines for overnight stays. The supposed rationale or pretense for these maneuverings was to expedite the convenient delivery of the machines to precincts on election day.
Yesterday, attorney Lehto took an optimistic stance when he commented on the role of the public in taking back control of their elections.
"The shutdown of any possibility of a court based investigation of the CA50 race could not be in more stark contrast to the 92% support for election transparency in the Zogby poll. The contrast between the two sides now could not be clearer. The question of the moment is whether and to what extent the 92% can discover its own supermajority status, or to what extent they continue to be deceived, deluded and distracted by illusions of their own powerlessness."
Did the plaintiff with a legal right to the courts have a legitimate concern? You tell me...
SEE PHOTOS - a couple of 54-year old women from Black Box Voting bought $12 worth of tools and in four minutes penetrated the memory card seals, removed, replaced the memory card, and sealed it all up again without leaving a trace. This experiment shows that the seals do nothing whatever to protect against access by insiders after testing, and the seals also are worthless in jurisdictions like Washington, Florida, California, and many other locations where voting machines are sent home with poll workers for days before the election.