HELP! We’re Being Tortured!

Angels and ministers of grace defend us.

It’s almost 100 days of torture and we can’t take it anymore.

Any doubt that torture works has been removed. Torture works – and it hurts, it hurts.

* * * * *

It is torture to be subjected to so many supposedly intelligent people poring over so many words and events and miss the obvious.

Let’s solve one major mystery immediately before addressing the issue of torture and whether the United States should engage in it. Why did Obama reverse what he and his flacks have been saying for so long? Simple answer: no TelePrompter.

The New York Times could not divine that simple answer. They were stumped at the Grey Lady:

President Obama on Tuesday left open the door to creating a bipartisan commission that would investigate the Bush administration’s use of harsh interrogation techniques on terrorism suspects, and he did not rule out taking action against the lawyers who fashioned the legal guidelines for the interrogations.

Mr. Obama, who has been saying that the nation should look ahead rather than focusing on the past, said he is “not suggesting” that a commission be established.

But in response to questions from reporters in the Oval Office, he said, “if and when there needs to be a further accounting,” he hoped that Congress would examine ways to obtain one “in a bipartisan fashion,” from people who are independent and therefore can build credibility with the public.

Get it? The Obama flacks were stating policy but Obama himself is such a dimwit eager to please boob he made a mess of things. Answering questions without a TelePrompter and without preparation Obama bungled his answer.

Earlier in the week, Obama had ordered release of memoranda on the justifications for “harsh interrogations” prepared by the George W. Bush administration. That led to calls by former Vice President Dick Cheney for release of additional memos which supposedly would prove the “harsh interrogations” had extracted valuable information and had made the nation safe from more 9/11 style attacks. That increased the hubbub even more and all sorts of elected officials started saying all sorts of things.

Jane Harman became involved in a mess of what did she know and what did she promise to whom. Nancy Pelosi and Dimocrats all over the place denied they knew about the torture even as evidence increased that they indeed had been informed of the torture and even protested about whether the agency was doing enough.

Old stories resurfaced about Democrats Pelosi and Jane Harman and Bob Graham and Jay Rockefeller and their C.I.A. tours through detention sites and the “harsh techniques“. It became torture just to try to keep the stories straight. It was torture to try to figure out what was what. (It promises to get messier as the Justice Department, because of an ACLU lawsuit, will release lots more photographs of abuse of prisoners in Afghanistan and Iraq.)

The mess forced Obama to visit the Central Intelligence Agency to assure them he was going to “protect” them. C.I.A. officials soon learned Obama can’t be trusted.

Mr. Obama tried to calm the situation on Monday with his first visit to C.I.A. headquarters since taking office. Concerned about alienating the agency, Mr. Obama went out of his way to lavish praise on intelligence officers, using words like “indispensable,” “courage” and “remarkable” and promising his “support and appreciation.”

Past Directors of the C.I.A. and Leon Panetta, had told Obama not to release the memoranda. Obama however released the memoranda in order to continue his “blame Bush” justifications.

Most importantly, Obama knows better than to mess with people who know the secrets. It wasn’t morale Obama was worried about when he visited the C.I.A. Aides said Mr. Obama worried about damaging morale at the C.I.A. and his own relationship with the agency. That’s right B.O. – don’t mess with the people who know the secrets and can expose your own dirty deeds.

The C.I.A. immediately fought back against Obama. The Agency stood by a May 30, 2005 memorandum which stated that “waterboarding” had extracted information from Al Qaeda leader and 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammad which helped thwart another hijacked airliner attack on Los Angeles. Waterboarding was employed on Sheik Mohammad and two others.

This was because the CIA imposed very tight restrictions on the use of waterboarding. “The ‘waterboard,’ which is the most intense of the CIA interrogation techniques, is subject to additional limits,” explained the May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo. “It may be used on a High Value Detainee only if the CIA has ‘credible intelligence that a terrorist attack is imminent’; ‘substantial and credible indicators that the subject has actionable intelligence that can prevent, disrupt or deny this attack’; and ‘[o]ther interrogation methods have failed to elicit this information within the perceived time limit for preventing the attack.’”

And there are a lot of dirty deeds to expose. Dimocrats originally thought it would be Bush administration officials who would be burned by the memoranda and therefore yelled for investigations of the torture and the torturers. Bushies like John C. Yoo, Jay S. Bybee and Steven G. Bradbury, the lawyers who prepared the “torture” memoranda were the original targets of the proposed investigations. When it became apparent that Pelosi and her fellow Dimocrats were complicit in the torture, the idea of investigations became less tasty.

The torture will eventually be investigated but not with regard to what Dimocrats knew and when Dimocrats knew it. The Senate Armed Services Committee will release a report and the House and Senate Judiciary Committees think they want some sort of “Truth Commission”. If laws were broken, and there is sufficient evidence to suggest laws were broken, the executive branch of government must investigate. But Obama is not one to care about illegal activity nor its prosecution.

Obama will huff n’ puff about lost moral bearings. But the law? Pish-posh. For Chicago politicians like Obama, the law is something to be evaded not enforced.

Obama’s mistake was to answer questions without a TelePrompter nor an aide around to slap down his stupid answers. In Big Media world, that simple explanation never was suspected. Big Media scratched it’s collective head and wracked it’s collective “brain” to try and figure out why boob Obama had done such a stupid thing.

* * * * *

Torture works. What “works” means is open to a lot of questions. But torture “works”. Schoolyard bullies know torture works and that they can force their victims to denounce mothers as combat boot wearing horrors and themselves as whatever the bully wants.

Torture works. Torture anyone who denies that torture works and you will force them to say torture works.

The schoolyard bully who tortures and torments victims is a less developed practitioner of the grisly arts perfected by “intelligence” agencies around the world. But that schoolyard bully is an everyday manifestation of the hidden arts practiced by grown ups in secret agencies and for pay.

Torture works. The current debate on torture has to start off from that simple premise. If torture does not work then we merely have a simple argument about governments and their “intelligence” agencies doing something stupid which they can stop doing without harm to the national interests. But the reason “torture” is torture to figure out is because it does work. Here is a good explanation by Gary Kamiya who invokes the categorical imperative and explains the issue better than he answers it:

Torture is wrong. It is condemned by every civilized nation and by international law. There is, however, one situation in which torture might theoretically be morally justified. This is the so-called “ticking bomb” scenario, which in one form or another has been debated by philosophers and ethicists for hundreds of years. Suppose we know that a captive has planted a bomb in a school, which is due to explode in a few hours. The captive refuses to say in what school he planted the bomb. Are we justified in torturing one depraved individual to save the lives of hundreds of innocent children?

In their response, philosophers divide into two camps. The Kantians, those who believe that human beings have a categorical imperative to treat other humans as ends, not as means, say we are never justified in torturing, no matter how legitimate the goal. The Benthamites or utilitarians say that we are justified, because in this case torture is the lesser of two evils. [snip]

Obama’s intelligence director, Dennis Blair, echoed this argument in a memo, writing, “High-value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding of the Al Qaeda organization that was attacking this country.” Former Bush intelligence chief Michael Hayden said, “The use of these techniques against these terrorists really did make us safer, it really did work.”

The argument that torture works cannot simply be dismissed. During World War II, for example, the Gestapo used torture with considerable effectiveness on captured agents working for Britain’s Special Operations Executive, the top-secret organization dedicated to sabotage and subversion behind Axis lines. A number of agents, unable to withstand the pain or, in some cases, even the prospect of pain, told their captors everything they knew, including the identity of other agents, the arrival time of flights, and the location of safe houses. During France’s brutal war in Algeria, the colonial power used torture effectively. As historian Alistair Horne, the author of the classic analysis of the French-Algerian war, “A Savage War of Peace,” told me in a 2007 interview, “In Algeria, the French used torture — as opposed to abuse — very effectively as an instrument of war.

Torture works. We knew torture works as children, either by stories of schoolyard bullies, or after watching World War II Gestapo potboilers (such as the James Cagney film 13 Rue Madelaine in which secret agent Jimmy is a target of an air raid. Jimmy must be killed by his own friends because he knows important secret information and is being tortured by the Gestapo for that information. The good guys know it is only a matter of time before good ol’ Jimmy “breaks” and they sadly order his death by air raid. As the bombs fall Jimmy happily sneers that his secrets will be kept safe.)



Gary Kamiya explains the philosophical arguments well but wimps out by stating that the “ticking bomb scenario” is not a genuine one just a schoolroom discussion subject.

Readers of Big Pink will remember the “ticking bomb scenario” from our September 27, 2007 article Hillary Clinton and American Voters Lied To By Tim Russert. Remember that article?

Russert posed a question premised on a discussion with Bill Clinton on Meet The Press last September 25, 2006. Russert kept hidden that the discussion was with Bill Clinton. Hillary objected to the Russert hypothetical as “dangerous” because it opens “a great big hole in what should be an attitude that our country and our president takes toward the appropriate treatment of everyone”. Russert then, trap baited, went in for the “gotcha” kill.

Russert finally disclosed that “The guest who laid out this scenario for me with that proposed solution was William Jefferson Clinton last year. So he disagrees with you.”

Russert lied. Here is the “gotcha” question transcript which includes the “ticking bomb” scenario:

RUSSERT: I want to move to another subject, and this involves a comment that a guest on “Meet the Press” made, and I want to read it, as follows: “Imagine the following scenario. We get lucky. We get the number three guy in Al Qaida. We know there’s a big bomb going off in America in three days and we know this guy knows where it is. Don’t we have the right and responsibility to beat it out of him? You could set up a law where the president could make a finding or could guarantee a pardon.”

[snip – other candidate answers]

CLINTON: As a matter of policy it cannot be American policy period.

I met with those same three- and four-star retired generals, and their principal point — in addition to the values that are so important for our country to exhibit — is that there is very little evidence that it works.

Now, there are a lot of other things that we need to be doing that I wish we were: better intelligence; making, you know, our country better respected around the world; working to have more allies.

But these hypotheticals are very dangerous because they open a great big hole in what should be an attitude that our country and our president takes toward the appropriate treatment of everyone. And I think it’s dangerous to go down this path.

RUSSERT: The guest who laid out this scenario for me with that proposed solution was William Jefferson Clinton last year. So he disagrees with you.

Russert lied. Bill Clinton did not disagree with Hillary Clinton. Hillary did not have the transcript of the Bill Clinton interview to smack Russert with but she nevertheless slapped Russert down hard. Russert never recovered and NBC never stopped attacking Hillary. We posted then the transcript of the Bill Clinton appearance Russert had referenced and lied about – which is very relevant today:

MR. RUSSERT: What did you think when Colin Powell said, “The world is beginning to doubt the moral basis of our fight against terrorism”?

MR. CLINTON: I think he was referring to the, the questions that have been raised about the original evidence, which plagues him and in which he was, I think, unwittingly complicit. I don’t think—I think it’s pretty clear, based on what all the people that worked for him have said. I think he was most worried about the question of torture and the conduct of the prisons at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. And of course, he weighed in in this debate about the extent to which the CIA or others could engage in conduct which clearly violates the Geneva Convention.

Now, we—as you and I talk, and we hear that they’ve reached an agreement, the senators and the White House, and I hope they have. But Colin pointed out that, you know, we’ve got soldiers all over the world. If we get a reputation for torturing people, the following bad things are going to happen: We’re as likely going to get bad information is good, just for people to just quit getting beat on; two, we’re likely to create two or three or five enemies for every one we break; and three, we make our own soldiers much more vulnerable to conduct which violates the Geneva Convention. That is, we can’t expect our friends, much less our enemies, to accept the fact that because we’re the good guys, we get to have a different standard of conduct. And most people think the definition of a good guy is someone who voluntarily observes a different standard of conduct, not someone who claims the right to do things others can’t do.

MR. RUSSERT: Would you outlaw waterboarding and sleep deprivation, loud music, all those kinds of tactics?

MR. CLINTON: Well, I—here’s what I would do. I would figure out what the, what the generally accepted definitions of the Geneva Convention are, and I would honor them. I would also talk to people who do this kind of work about what is generally most effective, and they will—they’re almost always not advocate of torture, and I wouldn’t do anything that would put our own people at risk.

Now, the thing that drives—that, that gives the president’s position a little edge is that every one of us can imagine the following scenario: We get lucky, we get the number three guy in al-Qaeda, and we know there’s a big bomb going off in America in three days and we know this guy knows where it is. Don’t we have the right and the responsibility to beat it out of him? But keep in mind, in 99 percent of the interrogations, you don’t know those things.

Now, it happens like even in the military regulations, in a case like that, they do have the power to use extreme force because there is an imminent threat to the United States, and then to live with the consequences. The president—they could set up a law where the president could make a finding or could guarantee a pardon or could guarantee the submission of that sort of thing ex post facto to the intelligence court, just like we do now with wire taps.

So I, I don’t think that hard case justifies the sweeping authority for waterboarding and all the other stuff that, that was sought in this legislation. And I think, you know, if that circumstance comes up—we all know what we’d do to keep our country from going through another 9/11 if we could. But to—but to claim in advance the right to do this whenever someone takes a notion to engage in conduct that plainly violates the Geneva Convention, that, I think, is a mistake.

We wrote at the time:

Bill Clinton on Meet The Press told Tim Russert that it “is a mistake” to have an advance policy of torture. Hillary said about torture “As a matter of policy it cannot be American policy period.” There is no difference between Bill and Hillary Clinton on torture policy, contrary to Russert’s assertions. In fact, Hillary seemed to track closely Bill Clinton on the mistake that is torture. Hillary noted her conversations with various military generals (as did Obama), all of whom stated to her that regarding torture “there is very little evidence that it works”.

Are Hillary and Bill Clinton in disagreement with us? Does torture not work? Are Hillary and Bill Clinton wrong? Are we wrong?

NO to all the above.

Torture “works” if the definition is a limited one. Yes, torture does work, even friendly “good cop” persuasion “works”, to get false confessions – that is something even the drowsiest police department knows. The difficulty is not in forcing a statement out of a suspect or a schoolyard victim – the problem is getting the truth – and then figuring out whether the suspect knows the truth.

For instance, if you want a great outfit for opening night at the Metropolitan or Paris Opera, you can torture Michelle Obama in order to get the name of her “designer” and all her style tips. However, once you get that information it will do you no good because Michelle Obama’s clothing knowledge is not worth much.

Likewise, a terrorist suspect might provide information regarding bombings but it is possible that the terrorist suspect has been misinformed by his compatriots or does not have the information sought and therefore will either make it up or lie. The trick is to get the truth from someone that knows the truth in a timely manner.

What Hillary and Bill Clinton both understood is that torture as national policy is not a good idea. As a policy torture does generally not work. The extremely ugly truth that Bill and Hillary Clinton understand is that the United States should be absolutely against torture as a policy, but in case of that 1% emergency, all bets are off, and everything must be considered. Bill Clinton put it this way: And I think, you know, if that circumstance comes up—we all know what we’d do to keep our country from going through another 9/11 if we could.

Yes, it is a nod and a wink understanding that torture is to be rejected in 99% of cases, but that in a “ticking bomb” scenario, the options remain open to consideration. It is not an absolutist, egghead, philosophical answer. It is a real life scenario answer with all the real life complexities.

Hillary and Bill Clinton distinguish between the ugly garbage that occurred at Abu Ghraib prison and the “ticking bomb” scenario. At Abu Gharib, and in similar cases the “torture” was really just abuse. Obama politically conflates the disgusting Abu Gharib abuse with the genuine philosophical and practical problem of a modern democratic society which employs “torture” in the Jeremy Bentham Utilitarian lesser of two evils sense – at the risk of losing its “soul”.

After 9/11 we thought there should have been a massive investigation into the massive intelligence failure which resulted in the destruction of the World Trade Center towers and a hit on the Pentagon. George W. Bush however, opposed such an investigation.

After the Titanic disaster, while clothes were still moist there was investigation of the oceanic disaster. After Pearl Harbor while the alerts were fresh, there was an investigation of that disaster.

We like investigations. We want to know the truth. But we want the full truth, not a fake investigation which protects Dimocrats and is a political vendetta to harm Republicans and burnish boob Obama.

Paul Krugman and others today are calling for an investigation on torture. But any investigation cannot be a victory for hypocrites like Pelosi. An investigation cannot be a hding place for hypocrites like Obama who “want to be on both sides of every debate…”

Let’s have an investigation and let’s get everyone on the record.

Let’s have a Truth Commission and let’s get to the bottom of all the rot.

Barack Obama opened the doors but now he wants to shut down an investigation for the “truth”.

The last thing Obama wants is an investigation into the truth. When the hunt for the “truth” commences it is Obama who fears the hounds the most.

For Obama and his Dimocrats, the truth is torture.

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180 thoughts on “HELP! We’re Being Tortured!

  1. That’s why Rasmussen consistently has Obama’s approval 5-10 points lower than every other poll: He samples more GOPers.

    ==========

    Maybe I’m missing a point, but I don’t follow this. By the most common technique, AFTER SAMPLING, you ADJUST for how many of each party are actually in your target area.

    For example, suppose you’re phoning random numbers and you only have enough money to phone 100 people. Suppose you get 75 women and 25 men, and all the women say No and all the Men say Yes.

    You don’t report ” 75% of residents oppose X ” even though that is waht your raw data says. You ADJUST for how many men and how many women actually live there — presumably 50/50 — and report ” 50/50 support/oppose X “

  2. http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2009/04/24/democrats/index.html

    Democratic Congressional leaders are doing now what they did throughout the Bush presidency: namely, pretending to oppose what was done while doing everything possible to protect and enable it and shield the wrongdoers from scrutiny (in large part because some of the wrongdoing was by their own party).

    Obama’s ostensible motives here are no better. The claim that punishing Bush crimes will undermine his political interests is not only false (as Krugman definitively establishes today) but also corrupt. Democrats spent the last several years vehemently complaining about the “politicization of the Justice Department” under Alberto Gonzales. Yet so many of these same Democrats are now demanding that the Obama DOJ refrain from prosecuting Bush criminals based on purely political grounds: namely, that those prosecutions will interfere with Obama’s political agenda.

    Blocking criminal investigations for political reasons is definitively corrupt — period. That’s true whether Democrats or Republicans do it.

  3. TAHNK YOU, admin, for some damn common sense. I had not seen the transcript before of Bill’s conversation with Russert, but I get what he and Hill both were saying, and they are RIGHT.

    Here’s the deal. In a very narrow, ticking-bomb type scenario, when you know the very specific piece of information you want, and also have the means to know if the answer is true or not, torture works. Torture does not work as a general fishing expedition interrogation tool, and those in the CIA etc know this.

    The truth is that harsh interrogation methods have ALWAYS happened in our intelligence services. Bush did not invent them. They have happened RARELY and quietly, and in dire circumstances, and those that made that call took the intra-agency heat for making it, but they have happened. They happened in an unsanctioned way, rarely, in an emergency.

    What Bush did was something entirely different. He sought to enshrine torture as a sanctioned tactic of interrogation. And that is whole ‘nother ball of wax than acknowledging that right or wrong, it happens sometimes. Enshrining even narrowly defined torture as part of our legal code is very dangerous, and leads to abuses and horror as various agencies justify and overstep bounds. It creates a nasty, nasty environment.

    In many ways, it’s similar to other laws that get broken in an emergency. Take the cop who harassed that football player for running a red light to get to his dying mother-in-law. The player BROKE THE LAW. No doubt about it. But any reasonable person looks at it, and says it was justified in that circumstance, and he ought not to be prosecuted.

    Now, the correct response is not to decide that because of that rare exception, we should CHANGE THE LAW to making running red lights okay if the driver feels there is an emergency. If you did that, chaos would ensue. Jerks would be running red lights, and claiming it was justified, demanding the police prove that it wasn’t, etc. No, the sane response is to leave the law as it is – “thou shalt not run red lights”. And if someone does, in a dire emergency, then they’d better be sure they are confident that most sound-thinking people would agree with them, and not convict them, despite the fact that they did, indeed, violate the law.

    You do not enshrine torture interrogations as LAW. But in the ticking time-bomb scenario, a president or a CIA official may decide to say “Go ahead, do it.” And guess what? The very fact that they know they are, in an emergency, “justifiably” violating the law, and will have to take the heat for making that horrible decision, if they are wrong is the very thing that will keep it from being abused.

    Just my two cents. I’m a realist. If the guy was sitting in front of me, and I KNEW for a FACT that he had the location of the dirty bomb set to go off in 6 hours, I might just grab the waterboard and the cattle prod myself. And I’d do it saying, “God help me, God forgive me if I’m wrong..” It’s called making a hard or even illegal decision, owning up to it, and being willing to live with the guilt or condemnation if you are mistaken.

  4. May I add: If the thing that is keeping you from torturing is that you haven’t yet gotten a law to cover your ass, then maybe the circumstances that you say justify the torture are not so dire as you claim. Because if it really WAS a “doomsday scenario”, you’d have the balls to do what needed to be done, and risk being hated or condemned for it.

  5. Thanks HillaryForTexas.

    There is a danger that the article which is somewhat complicated would be misunderstood or not understood. It was written in a Mullholland Drive style and there is always a possibility that the point is lost. You got it.

    One sort of simple example that restates your point: A massive wiretap program that listens in on many private conversations but no sufficient follow up to investigate what is said in the calls vs. listening in after a court order on one suspect’s calls, monitoring the suspect’s visitors, mail, emails, all communications all contacts. The latter will obtain potentially useful information, the former will obtain a great deal of information which is essentially a waste of time and effort.

  6. The Dims are fascists. As such, they favor show trials. They oppose a search for truth. Let the trial go forward. Let ALL parties who knew about this and acted–or failed to act, be summoned to appear, give a truthful and accurate accounting of their actions, and be subject to cross examination in an open forum.

    There is no better way for the United States to prove to the world that it is a nation of laws, no one is above the law, and every defendant is entitled to due process, as opposed to trial by media. The ramifications are profound and the policy implications are far reaching.

    Justice Brandeis put it best: fresh air is the best disinfectant, electric light the best policeman. Pelosi: bring your lawyer.

  7. Exactly, admin. Saying that it might be necessary in rare circumstances, legal or not, is not the same thing as saying “legalize it”. It’s the fact that it’s illegal that ensures that it’s rare.

    Torture ought to remain illegal. Torture also might be the thing to do in a specific serious-danger scenario. Those two statements are not contradictory.

  8. Admin,
    Don’t have toime to read your post thoroughly and wanna make sure i ‘get the point.’ which is, no doubt, wickedly convolutedly accurate.

    Wbboei!

    NO FAIR!!!!!!
    “This may lighten things up a bit. If not I am quite sure it will make Basil happy:”
    I feel like you’re Sun Tsuing me! i haven’t had time to read your post (from the previous thread) either as I’m busy trying to write an article about antler restriction expansion in NYS Wildlife Management units, another of the godzillions of topics I’m in the dark about.

  9. Justice Brandeis put it best: fresh air is the best disinfectant, electric light the best policeman. Pelosi: bring your lawyer.
    ************
    Thanks to a Republican Congress, the legal frame work is already in place. No need for Congressional investigations or other fluff, DOJ just need to do their job. Of course with Eric “Death Squad” Holder incharge that is unlikely. Alberto was worried enough that he tried to cover their asses in the “Military Commissions Act”, I don’t think that will hold up.

    TITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 118 > § 2441
    § 2441. War crimes
    “(a) Offense.— Whoever, whether inside or outside the United States, commits a war crime, in any of the circumstances described in subsection (b), shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for life or any term of years, or both, and if death results to the victim, shall also be subject to the penalty of death.
    (b) Circumstances.— The circumstances referred to in subsection (a) are that the person committing such war crime or the victim of such war crime is a member of the Armed Forces of the United States or a national of the United States (as defined in section 101 of the Immigration and Nationality Act).
    (c) Definition.— As used in this section the term “war crime” means any conduct—
    (1) defined as a grave breach in any of the international conventions signed at Geneva 12 August 1949, or any protocol to such convention to which the United States is a party;
    (2) prohibited by Article 23, 25, 27, or 28 of the Annex to the Hague Convention IV, Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, signed 18 October 1907;
    (3) which constitutes a grave breach of common Article 3 (as defined in subsection (d)) when committed in the context of and in association with an armed conflict not of an international character; or
    (4) of a person who, in relation to an armed conflict and contrary to the provisions of the Protocol on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Mines, Booby-Traps and Other Devices as amended at Geneva on 3 May 1996 (Protocol II as amended on 3 May 1996), when the United States is a party to such Protocol, willfully kills or causes serious injury to civilians.
    (d) Common Article 3 Violations.—
    (1) Prohibited conduct.— In subsection (c)(3), the term “grave breach of common Article 3” means any conduct (such conduct constituting a grave breach of common Article 3 of the international conventions done at Geneva August 12, 1949), as follows:
    (A) Torture.— The act of a person who commits, or conspires or attempts to commit, an act specifically intended to inflict severe physical or mental pain or suffering (other than pain or suffering incidental to lawful sanctions) upon another person within his custody or physical control for the purpose of obtaining information or a confession, punishment, intimidation, coercion, or any reason based on discrimination of any kind.
    (B) Cruel or inhuman treatment.— The act of a person who commits, or conspires or attempts to commit, an act intended to inflict severe or serious physical or mental pain or suffering (other than pain or suffering incidental to lawful sanctions), including serious physical abuse, upon another within his custody or control.

  10. If you are part of the team who is trying to extact a confession from a known terrorist, relative to dangerous activities and likely targets then adrenelin or what Jack Welch would call deal heat will make it hard for you to weigh the equities of proceeding further.

    That is where a judge who is familiar with those methods could evaluate the nature of the threat, its immediacy, the failure of conventional interrogation tactics, and the liklihood of success in adopting extaordinary methods in those circumstances. That judge could then enter a finding either authorizing or denying their use. Alan Dershowitz proposed the adoption of torture warrants which would be used in tnose circumstances time permitting.

  11. Thanks to a Republican Congress, the legal frame work is already in place. No need for Congressional investigations or other fluff, DOJ just need to do their job. Of course with Eric “Death Squad” Holder incharge that is unlikely. Alberto was worried enough that he tried to cover their asses in the “Military Commissions Act”, I don’t think that will hold up
    ——————————-
    Le bon temps roule. And let all the chips fall where they will. Wouldnt it be grand to get an internet letter writing campaign going demanding a full investigation of all public officials with knowlede regardless of party affilitation as per the statute–and so as not to test his imagination name then by name including Reid and Pelosi who have already done us the favor of contradicting eachother on the question of whether or not they were briefed. I think the Congressional Black Causcus should be pressed on this issue as well. All we are asking for is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth from the duly elected representatives of the people who have sworn an oath to uphold the Constitution.

    SHV: I hope you saw my posting re. Pakistan at the bottom of the preceding blog.

  12. The mother of a friend of mine dated a guy in the 1950s who had been part of the Marine Corps Raiders which was a very elite fighting unit which was active in the South Pacific in World War II but was disbanded when the battlefied moved to the Central Pacific and the tactics changed. Nevertheless they are a Marine Corps legend. The most impressive military leader I ever met, Lewis Walt was commander of Company A-Edsons Raiders. My friends mothers boyfriend was from one of the other groups–Carlsons Raiders or Jimmy Roosevelts group. His unit was called the Hashknife Marines which was probably a refence to the Bowie Knife they carried.

    One night he got rip roaring drunk and related a story to my friend which he had kept to himself for more than a decade. His group was captured somewhere–probably Bouganville. The Japanese were torturing them to obtain information. The details of that are not important but it was very primitive stuff. The youngest member of their unit, who was still under age was scared to death of the torture, begged my friends mothers boyfriend to kill him so he would not divulge the information he had to the enemy. He kept begging him and the friend refused until finally the kid said if you do not do it to me I will do it myself. So finally he did and told him he had lived with that horror ever since. Years of sleepless nights.

  13. I have always believed that you can’t legislate good behavior or pay someone to do a good job if they are not personally invested in doing a good job. Things really only work properly when people have high ethical standards and are guided by them.

    We allow for presidential pardons, when effectively the President overrides a court of law and grants a pardon. Clinton was absolutely right in that although our laws should reflect our abhorence of torture, those in the position of power need the ability under certain conditions to use common sense and act in the national interest.

  14. In their response, philosophers divide into two camps. The Kantians, those who believe that human beings have a categorical imperative to treat other humans as ends, not as means, say we are never justified in torturing, no matter how legitimate the goal.
    ************************************

    Unless it’s their children. Then watch them torture like the energizer bunny.

  15. What barack hussein obama is doing is dismantling the trust that his security forces and agencies have in him. He is making it so they are all looking over their shoulders wondering what he will do to them next. He has thrown them all under the bus. He is more concerned in the rights of terrorists than he is in making sure America will be safe.

    He should be ashamed of himself. Here’s wishing he just crawls into a hole soon and disappears for good.

  16. President Barack Obama has signed an executive order presidential determination allowing hundreds of thousands of Palestinians to settle in the United States at American taxpayers’ expense. Sure, what can go wrong when we allow hundreds of thousands of people who have been, as Mark Steyn memorably described, “marinated” in a “sick death cult,” who voted for Hamas, and 55% of whom support suicide bombing/murders in the United States .
    ***********************************

    I was talking to an Indian Dr today. We always talk politics and we are very close in our views. He was talking about this very thing. He said because he ids dark he is often mistaken for a Muslim, he is not. Coming from India, he has no love for Islam. He said that all the Muslim Dr.’s in Austin refuse to let their children go to public/private American schools. All go to private Muslim schools. That hate America, they just want the opportunities, make their $ and move on. Refuse to let their children date Americans, etc.
    YA, we need more people like this. There is going to be a cultural war in America, and it will be soon.

  17. gonzo,

    He is not healing racial disparity, he is widening the gap and opening up a can of worms. His moves will only result in increased racial hatred and increased danger for Americans.

  18. bitterpolitiz

    of those milestones by which a new president and his accomplishments are judged.

    Mary B // April 24, 2009 at 7:37 am

    Pakistani Taliban Agree to Withdraw from Buner

    voanews.com/english/2009-04-24-voa7.cfm

    A spokesman for the Taliban in Pakistan says the group’s militants have agreed to withdraw from the northwestern district they infiltrated earlier this week.

    The spokesman said top Taliban officials are going to Buner Friday to deliver the message to fighters who crossed into the district from their stronghold in the nearby Swat Valley. A local official says Taliban based in Buner can remain in the area as long as they do not patrol the streets.

    Pakistan deployed hundreds of paramilitary troops to the area after Taliban militants began setting up checkpoints in the district, which is less than 100 kilometers from Islamabad.

    There are reports that Taliban militants also entered into the nearby district of Shangla.

    The United States has expressed extreme concern over military and political advances by the Taliban. Officials say a peace deal between the Pakistani government and the Taliban in the northwestern Malakand region may be emboldening the militants.

    The peace deal calls for the militants to put down their weapons, in exchange for the establishment of (strict Islamic) Sharia law in the region.

  19. This is also something I and the Dr. were talking about. Caught link @ Bitterpolitiz
    **********************************************

    L.A. Times Archives

    U.S. plans to accept several Chinese Muslims from Guantanamo
    The Uighurs would be the first detainees from the prison to settle in America. Challenges are expected from China and within the U.S.
    By Julian E. Barnes
    April 24, 2009
    Reporting from Washington — The Obama administration is preparing to admit into the United States as many as seven Chinese Muslims who have been imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay in the first release of any of the detainees into this country, according to current and former U.S. officials.

    Their release is seen as a crucial step to plans, announced by President Obama during his first week in office, to close the prison and relocate the detainees. Administration officials also believe that settling some of them in American communities will set an example, helping to persuade other nations to accept Guantanamo detainees too.

    U.S. to reveal alleged prison abuse… Different approaches for two men at…Legal experts want more from Obama on Guantanamo
    Prosecuting ‘torture memo’ authors called ‘a real stretch’
    Obama open to inquiry on CIA tactics

    But the decision to release the Chinese Muslims, known as Uighurs, is not final and faces challenges from within the government, as well as likely public opposition. Among government agencies, the Homeland Security Department has registered concerns about the plan.

    The move would also incense Chinese officials, who consider the Uighurs domestic terrorists and want those held at Guantanamo handed over for investigation. U.S. officials no longer consider the Chinese Muslims to be enemy combatants and fear they would be mistreated in China.

    There are 17 Uighurs (pronounced WEE-gers) at Guantanamo. A U.S. official familiar with the discussions over their release said that as many as seven could be resettled in the U.S., possibly in two or more small groups.

    Officials have not said where in the United States they might live. But many Uighur immigrants from China live in Washington’s Virginia suburbs, and advocates have urged that the detainees be resettled near people who speak their language and are familiar with their customs.

    The release would mark a dramatic turn in the history of the Guantanamo Bay facility, set up in Cuba by the Bush administration as an offshore prison beyond the reach of American law. Intended to hold alleged terrorists captured during the “war on terror,” Guantanamo turned into an international symbol of U.S. overreach. At its peak, it held nearly 800 prisoners; about 250 remain.

    The Uighurs are primarily from the northwestern steppes of China in a region officially called the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region but known to Uighurs as Turkestan. Beijing, which controls the area, has been criticized by Washington and others for repressing Uighur religious rights and freedoms.

    The Uighurs were sent to Guantanamo in 2002 after being captured in Pakistan. Before that, they had gravitated to Afghanistan, where they received firearms training at a camp apparently run by a Uighur separatist.

    Some former U.S. officials have said government information indicates that the Uighurs may pose a danger if released. But other officials and human rights organizations insist they pose no threat to Americans.

    “It is kind of hard to tell other countries you would like them to accept some of these guys from Guantanamo if you are not willing to accept them,” said the U.S. official, who described the internal discussions on condition of anonymity.

    The release is a slap in the face to Beijing, which has requested that the Uighur prisoners be repatriated to China to stand trial for separatist activities. In their testimony before the Guantanamo tribunal, the Uighurs admitted that their purpose in going to Afghanistan was to receive military training to fight Chinese rule over Xinjiang

  20. SHV: I hope you saw my posting re. Pakistan at the bottom of the preceding blog.
    **********
    No, but I will check it out…I’m traveling down the East coast so my internet time has been limited.

  21. Be careful out there, our Gov is not taking precautions. I was in an infection control meeting @ work today, NOT A WORD and I live in Texas!!!!! And am a Nurse! Looks like this article is cleaned up, hope so.

    Mexico City suspends schools over flu epidemic

    Mark Stevenson, Associated Press Writer – Fri Apr 24, 12:20 pm ET
    MEXICO CITY – Mexico City closed schools across the metropolis of 20 million Friday after at least 16 people died and more than 900 others fall ill from what health officials suspect is a new strain of swine flu. World health officials worried that it could mark the start of a flu pandemic.

    The World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland said at least 57 have died in the outbreak, although it wasn’t yet clear if this larger number of deaths was due to swine flu.

    “We are very, very concerned,” said Thomas Abraham, a spokesman for the agency. “We have what appears to be a novel virus and it has spread from human to human.” If international spread is confirmed, that meets WHO’s criteria for raising the pandemic alert level, he added.

    Abraham said WHO on Friday raised their internal alert system, allowing them to divert more money and personnel to dealing with the outbreak. “It’s all hands on deck at the moment.” Abraham said.

    Mexico’s Health Secretary, Jose Cordova, said only 16 of the deaths have been confirmed to have been caused by the new strain, through testing at the government’s laboratories. Samples from 44 other people who died were still being tested. The health department put the total number of people sickened at around 943 nationwide.

    Cordova said samples were sent to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, to determine whether it’s the same virus infecting seven people in Texas and California. As of now, tests show the flu is a “new, different strain … that originally came from pigs.”

    “We certainly have 60 deaths that we can’t be sure are from the same virus, but it is probable,” Cordova told MVS radio in Mexico City.

    Cordova described a chilling new strain that had killed only people among the normally less-vulnerable young and mid-adult age range. One possibility is that the most vulnerable segments of the population — infants and the aged — had been vaccinated against other strains, and that those vaccines may be providing some protection.

    But Dr. Anne Schuchat of the CDC said “at this point, we do not have any confirmations of swine influenza in Mexico” of the kind that sickened seven California and Texas residents.

    All seven U.S. victims recovered from a strain of the flu that combines pig, bird and human viruses in a way that researchers have not seen before.

    Cordova also told MVS radio in Mexico City that Mexican health officials can’t be sure that the deaths “are from the same virus, but it is probable.”

    Closing the schools kept 6.1 million students home from day care centers through high schools, and thousands more were affected as colleges and universities closed down. Parents scrambled to juggle work and family concerns due to what local media said was the first citywide schools closure since Mexico City’s devastating 1985 earthquake.

    Lillian Molina and other teachers at the Montessori’s World preschool scrubbed down their empty classrooms with Clorox, soap and Lysol on Friday between fielding calls from worried parents. While the school has had no known cases among its students, Molina supported the government’s decision to shutter classes, especially in preschools.

    “It’s great they are taking precautions,” she said. “I think it’s a really good idea.”

    Authorities advised capital residents not to go to work if they felt ill, and to wear surgical masks if they had to move through crowds. A wider shutdown — perhaps including shutting down government offices — was being considered.

    “It is very likely that classes will be suspended for several days,” Cordova said. “We will have to evaluate, and let’s hope this doesn’t happen, the need to restrict activity at workplaces.”

    Still, U.S. health officials said it’s not yet a reason for alarm in the United States. The five in California and two in Texas have all recovered, and testing indicates some common antiviral medications seem to work against the virus.

    Schuchat of the CDC said officials believe the new strain can spread human-to-human, which is unusual for a swine flu virus. The CDC is checking people who have been in contact with the seven confirmed U.S. cases, who all became ill between late March and mid-April.

    The U.S. cases are a growing medical mystery because it’s unclear how they caught the virus. The CDC said none of the seven people were in contact with pigs, which is how people usually catch swine flu. And only a few were in contact with each other.

    CDC officials described the virus as having a unique combination of gene segments not seen in people or pigs before. The bug contains human virus, avian virus from North America and pig viruses from North America, Europe and Asia.

    Health officials have seen mixes of bird, pig and human virus before, but never such an intercontinental combination with more than one pig virus in the mix.

    Scientists keep a close eye on flu viruses that emerge from pigs. The animals are considered particularly susceptible to both avian and human viruses and a likely place where the kind of genetic reassortment can take place that might lead to a new form of pandemic flu, said Dr. John Treanor, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

    The virus may be something completely new, or it may have been around for a while but was only detected now because of improved lab testing and disease surveillance, CDC officials said.

    The virus was first detected in two children in southern California — a 10-year-old boy in San Diego County and a 9-year-old girl in neighboring Imperial County.

    It’s not known if anyone is getting sick from the virus right now, CDC officials said.

    It’s also not known if the seasonal flu vaccine that Americans got last fall and early this year protects against this type of virus. People should wash their hands and take other customary precautions, CDC officials said.

  22. The Maltese Falcon has an interesting dialog regarding torture. Detective Sam Spade (Humphrey Bogart in the flim) knows where the magnificant jewel encrusted statue of the Falcon is. The villian Casper Gutman (played by Sydney Greenstreet in the film) has captured Spade and is threatening to beat the information out of Spade. Here is the scene: from the book by Dashiel Hammett):

    Spade flung his words out with a brutal sort of carelessness that gave them more weight than they could have got from dramatic emphasis or from loudness. “If you kill me, how are you going to get the bird? If I know you can’t afford to kill me till you have it, how are you going to scare me into giving it to you?”

    Gutman cocked his head to the left and considered these questions. His eyes twinkled between puckered lids. Presently, he gave his genial answer: “Well, sir, there are other means of persuasion besides killing and threatening to kill.”

    “Sure,” Spade agreed, “but they’re not much good unless the threat of death is behind them to hold the victim down. See what I mean? If you try something I don’t like I won’t stand for it. I’ll make it a matter of your having to call it off or kill me, knowing you can’t afford to kill me.”

    “I see what you mean.” Gutman chuckled. “That is an attitude, sir, that calls for the most delicate judgement on both sides, because, as you know, sir, men are likely to forget in the heat of action where their best interests lie and let their emotions carry them away.”

    Spade too was all smiling blandness. “That’s the trick, from my side,” he said, “to make my play strong enough that it ties you up, but yet not make you mad enough to bump me off against your better judgment.”

  23. Bitterpolitiz, MaryB has been busy!

    Mary B // April 24, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    Taliban Spokesman Blames American Women

    nytimes.com/2009/04/24/video-of-pakistani-taliban-in-buner-and-swat/

    Britain’s Channel 4 News aired a video report on Thursday night showing Taliban forces on the streets of the strategically important Pakistani town of Buner, just 70 miles from the country’s capital, Islamabad. As Carlotta Gall and Eric Schmidt explain in The Times, a near total lack of resistance from Pakistan’s military has allowed just “400 to 500 insurgents,” to seize control of the area.

    The Channel 4 News report also features footage of a large Taliban rally earlier this week in the neighboring Swat Valley, where the government ceded control to the Taliban in a peace deal, and an interview with a spokesman for the Taliban in Swat.

    On Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that “the Pakistani government is basically abdicating to the Taliban,” but the spokesman, Haji Muslim Khan, said that Taliban anger was partly caused by the presence of female American soldiers in the region. Mr. Khan said that Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Yousaf Raza Gilani, “should think about Western white women who take up arms and come from 20,000 miles away to fight against us here.”

    Given that the circumference of the planet is only about 25,000 miles, it is not clear what route Mr. Khan believes Western forces are taking to get to Pakistan.

  24. Lou Dobbs is saying the CDC says it is impossible to contain it now.
    *********************************
    This is BAD….

  25. This hurricane, Ophs Flu epidemic is on O watch. But of course he will say it started before, and is a Bush Error. It will be interesting.

  26. wbboei..I just read your Pakistan post…it it a serious problem..I am waiting for the moderate Taliban to contact Obama.

    The Pakistan nuclear program really took off after 2001, thanks to Bush. “President Bush formally lifted sanctions against India and Pakistan 22 September 2001 in a special memorandum to Secretary of State Colin Powell. The sanctions were imposed in response to the Indian and Pakistani nuclear weapons programs and testing. Powell said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” September 23 that lifting these sanctions, which had been under consideration for some time, sends an important signal that “we will stand by our friends who stand by us.”

    In March 2003 President Bush lifted sanctions against Pakistan that were imposed following the 1999 bloodless coup that brought President Pervez Musharraf to power. A White House statement said President Bush decided to lift the sanctions because it will “facilitate the transition to democratic rule in Pakistan” and help in efforts to fight international terrorism. Pakistani cooperation was key to US military action against the Taleban government in neighboring Afghanistan and al-Qaida terrorists thought responsible for the September 2001 attacks in New York and Washington.

  27. Pakistan con’t:

    The new reactor and reprocessing facility that is now coming on line is capable of producing enough Plutonium to make 50 weapon cores per year. The Pakistan Plutonium program, after a lot of problems, is now producing small nuclear devices that are highly mobile.

    “Powell said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” September 23 that lifting these sanctions, which had been under consideration for some time, sends an important signal that “we will stand by our friends who stand by us.”

    This country is going to regret the stupidity that is expressed by ““we will stand by our friends who stand by us.” What a bunch of fu**ing idiots!!

  28. HillaryforTexas Says:
    April 24th, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    May I add: If the thing that is keeping you from torturing is that you haven’t yet gotten a law to cover your ass, then maybe the circumstances that you say justify the torture are not so dire as you claim. Because if it really WAS a “doomsday scenario”, you’d have the balls to do what needed to be done, and risk being hated or condemned for it.

    =========================

    Damn right. If it’s really justified, then the torturers wouldn’t even be ASKING. They’d keep it quiet to protect the standard — and risk punishment themselves. If it’s really important enough — they should be willing to risk losing their own careers for it.

  29. SHV, the moderate Taliban getting control of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons will make us all sleep better – what would we do without B.O.? 🙂

  30. turndown, What I meant was Rasmussen’s adjusted sample includes a higher percentage of Repubs than other polls. Sorry I wasn’t clearer.

  31. On Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that “the Pakistani government is basically abdicating to the Taliban,” but the spokesman, Haji Muslim Khan, said that Taliban anger was partly caused by the presence of female American soldiers in the region. Mr. Khan said that Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Yousaf Raza Gilani, “should think about Western white women who take up arms and come from 20,000 miles away to fight against us here.”

    Given that the circumference of the planet is only about 25,000 miles, it is not clear what route Mr. Khan believes Western forces are taking to get to Pakistan.

    ================

    Well, Obama did say (in a serious position paper in 2007) that he wanted to move our troops from Iraq to “the right battlefield, in Pakistan and Afganistan.” Maybe he just took them the long way round.

    Typos aside, there might be a point there. Are US women really being sent to fight the Taliban? Seems like a bad idea all around….

  32. turndownobama-com Says:

    April 24th, 2009 at 8:48 pm
    ***********************************************

    To tell you the truth, I would go fight them and I am a middle aged woman. If they would be willing to train me and not use me as a nurse, I would do it.

  33. Paula Says:
    April 24th, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    turndown, What I meant was Rasmussen’s adjusted sample includes a higher percentage of Repubs than other polls.

    =================

    You’re not alone, I see that same phrasing so many places I finally had to question it.

    So it boils down to Rasmussan thinking the actual population distribution (Dems vs GOP vs Ind) is different than other pollsters think it is? So we’d need to look at how each pollster arrives at that distribution? Some sort of existing census records? Voter registration records?

  34. webmd.com says the following about the flu.

    Another disconcerting feature of the outbreak is that it’s probably too late to contain it to limited geographical areas.

    “We are seeing cases in Texas and California with no connection between them. This makes us think there has been transmission from person to person through many cycles,” Besser said. “For containment we need limitation to a confined geographical area, and we have not seen that here.”

  35. Re Rasmussen, something else we ran into in recent elections is that different pollsters estimate the GOP and Dem populations differently — and also estimate differently which respondents are ‘likely voters.’

  36. gonzo @ 7:46, it’s always about the WOMEN with these misogynistic Taliban assholes, isn’t it?

    Fuckers. Don’t want their women seeing that another life is possible for them. They are terrified of women. It’s their greatest fear.

    I say flood the damn place with BIG BAD VAGINAS. Let’s get every female paratrooper we have to parachute in with AK-47’s and lipstick, and tell the mullahs to eat shit and die, the woman-hating pigs. I want the female troops to deliberately march around screaming :”Boogah Boogah! Vagina vagina vagina!!!” Fuckers.

  37. Election Commission Loosens Up on Some Groups

    By Bernie Becker
    April 24, 2009

    The Federal Election Commission issued two rulings this week that continued a move toward a looser interpretation of election laws and could mean an increase in the use of loosely regulated, independent political groups in the 2010 midterm elections.

    In separate decisions, the commission found that the Pennsylvania-based Lantern Project and the union-supported American Leadership Project had not engaged in explicit advocacy for or against one candidate and therefore, did not need to register as political action committees.
    Groups registered under Section 527 of the tax code cannot unequivocally advocate for a certain candidate, but they are also not bound by the same federal election campaign finance laws as political committees and candidates that require full disclosure of donors, among other restrictions.

    The rulings could lead to an increase in both the organization of and donation to 527 groups during the next election cycle. Critics have long argued, especially during the 2004 election season, that these organizations acted as shadow arms of political parties and their interests but flouted the rules governing political fund-raising limits and the boundaries set for ad campaigns. And they found ways to get around the ban on so-called soft money that was at the heart of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance laws. “If history is any guide, that’s what we can expect,” said Michael E. Toner, a former F.E.C. chairman, said of an anticipated increase in such groups.

    The rulings also are the latest in a string of decisions, driven by the commission’s three Republicans, that give wider latitude to 527’s. In 2006, the Lantern Project ran advertisements against the Republican Senate incumbent, Rick Santorum, who eventually lost his seat to Democrat Bob Casey, with the tagline “What is he thinking?” The advertisements chided Mr. Santorum for, among other things, wanting to privatize Social Security and for accepting money from lobbyists. But the F.E.C. ruled, by a 4-1 vote, that the advertisements did not “explicitly urge” voters to oppose Mr. Santorum or vote for Mr. Casey. In last year’s Democratic primary campaign, the American Leadership Project ran advertisements that praised Hillary Rodham Clinton for her stand on health care and criticized Barack Obama for lacking ideas to fix the troubled economy.

    Mr. Obama’s lawyer, Bob Bauer, said last year that “this is not a case where there’s shades of gray,” and the campaign for Barack Obama filed a complaint. But, in a 3-2 decision, the F.E.C. ruled that American Leadership Group had also not crossed the line to direct advocacy. Ellen Weintraub, a Democratic member of the commission, recused herself from both cases. Groups that do cross the advocacy line are required to register as political action committees, which limits the amount of money they can accept from individuals.

    Fred Wertheimer, president of Democracy 21, disagreed sharply with the two decisions. “The message being sent out is very clear,” Mr. Wertheimer said. “Don’t worry about complying with campaign finance laws.” But Bradley A. Smith, another former F.E.C. chairman, argued that the commission’s definition of what constituted direct advocacy was “pretty clearly right.” And Richard L. Hasen, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, pointed out that the Supreme Court, now more sympathetic to deregulation, had also influenced the F.E.C.’s decisions. (For example, the Roberts Court has given corporations and unions more freedom to make election-related speech.)

    The commission has not always given such wide latitude to 527 groups. Following the 2004 election, the commission reached settlements with and collected fines from 527 groups such as the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and MoveOn.org’s Voter Fund, after concluding contributions to the groups could be limited since their major purpose was “involvement in campaign activity.” But starting last year, the F.E.C.’s current crop of three Republicans started moving the commission toward a more lax regulatory oversight. In December, the three Republicans rejected a settlement that would have fined the November Fund, a 527 financed by the Chamber of Commerce that campaigned against John Kerry and John Edwards in 2004, even though the F.E.C.’s own lawyers had negotiated the deal.

    thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/24/election-commission-loosens-up-on-some-groups/

  38. Pentagon to Release Prisoner Abuse Photos

    By Ann Scott Tyson
    April 25, 2009

    The Pentagon, in response to a lawsuit, will end a Bush administration legal battle and release “hundreds” of photos showing abuse or alleged abuse of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan by U.S. personnel, according to defense officials and civil liberties advocates. The photographs, to be released by May 28, include 21 images depicting detainee abuse in facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan other than the Abu Ghraib prison, as well as 23 other detainee abuse photos, according to the American Civil Liberties Union and a letter from the Justice Department sent to a federal court in New York yesterday.

    In addition, the Justice Department letter said “the government is also processing for release a substantial number of other images” contained in dozens of Army Criminal Investigation Division reports on the abuse. “This shows that the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib was not aberrational but was systemic and widespread,” said Amrit Singh, an ACLU staff attorney involved with the 2004 Freedom of Information Act lawsuit that led to the promise to release the photographs. “This will underscore calls for accountability for that abuse.” Singh called for an independent investigation into torture and prisoner abuse and said it should be followed, if warranted, by criminal prosecutions.

    Pentagon officials disputed the charge that the photographs proved abuse was “systemic” in prisons run by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying the images came from 60 of the military’s own investigations of abuse allegations. “What it demonstrates is that when we find credible allegations of abuse, we investigate them,” said a senior defense official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter.

    The Pentagon has not stated when or how it will release the detainee photos, but defense officials said the initial 44 and possibly hundreds more are likely to be made public close to the May 28 deadline.
    The Pentagon has noted that it investigates all allegations of detainee abuse and since 2001 has taken more than 400 disciplinary actions against U.S. military personnel found to have been involved in such abuse.

    Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates yesterday said it was “unrealistic” for the government to try to keep photos of detainee abuse a secret, noting that the ACLU lawsuit and others like it have made public release practically unavoidable.
    “There is a certain inevitability, I believe, that much of this will eventually come out,” Gates said. “Much has already come out.”

    The Bush administration had argued that public disclosure of the photographs would unleash outrage and violate a section of the Geneva Conventions that is widely interpreted to mean that photos of prisoners should not be shown to the public. But a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit rejected such arguments in September 2008 and required disclosure of the photos because of a “significant public interest” in potential government misconduct. A Bush administration request that the full appeals court rehear the case was denied March 11.

    Facing a deadline to either produce the photographs or take the appeal to the Supreme Court, where they believed chances of success were not high, Pentagon and Justice Department lawyers consulted last week and decided to comply with the lower-court ruling. “This case had pretty much run its course. Legal options at this point had become pretty limited,” said Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman.
    At the same time, however, Gates voiced concern that the release of photos, along with disclosures of interrogation memos and other materials, could cause unrest and create further problems for U.S. troops serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.
    “I also was quite concerned, as you might expect, with the potential backlash in the Middle East and in the theaters where we’re involved in conflict, and that it might have a negative impact on our troops,” he said.

    washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/24/AR2009042401516.html?sub=AR

  39. Personally I don’t miss Russert at all. He was a pig where Hillary was concerned. I don’t know how she and Bill went to his funeral. That’s them though, always gracious!
    Can you imagine what it would be like right now if Russert would not met his maker. OMG, he would be on our SOS constantly! I am glad his is causing trouble somewhere else out of our hair!

  40. 100% correct Confloyd. Russert was a legend in his own mind and among the Washington insiders. Truth be told, no one ever really brings him up and his legacy is minimal. I feel for his wife and son on a personal level, but I had no respect for the man after what he did to Hillary.

  41. How many of these media “guys” are closet women haters? How many have to stomp women into the ground just to show their superiority? And how many were so terrified of Hillary’s superior intelligence that they had to resort to bullying, distortion of facts, ridicule, and false scandal invention?

    Russert and so many others were/are a disgrace to their profession.

  42. 100% correct JanH……..as pointed out time and time again here, this election was an example of misogyny at it’s zenith . The hate that these males showed Hillary was a true indicator of their own lack of masculinity and fear that god forbade a great woman like Hillary would be our commnader and chief. I’m willing to bet even some closet demo racists voted for BO as the lesser of two evils………..

  43. lifting sanctions will facilitate the transition to democratic rule in Pakistan” and help in efforts to fight international terrorism–Bush
    ————————————————————-
    Seldom right but never in doubt.

  44. Do you think that Garafulo is an Obama campaign operative? You know the old trick of having operatives make unsubstantiated claims of racism while he maintains he knows nothing about it. There is some tie between that nevish and the campaign, or NBC. There is no other explanation for someone being that angry, politically disoriented and delusional. Not even LSD.

  45. HillaryforTexas Says:

    April 24th, 2009 at 9:36 pm
    gonzo @ 7:46, it’s always about the WOMEN with these misogynistic Taliban assholes, isn’t it?

    Fuckers. Don’t want their women seeing that another life is possible for them. They are terrified of women. It’s their greatest fear.

    I say flood the damn place with BIG BAD VAGINAS. Let’s get every female paratrooper we have to parachute in with AK-47’s and lipstick, and tell the mullahs to eat shit and die, the woman-hating pigs. I want the female troops to deliberately march around screaming :”Boogah Boogah! Vagina vagina vagina!!!” Fuckers.

    You rock!!!!

  46. Looks like Chrysler is not going to be bankrupt, a tentative deal with Canada has been reached. The losers are the taxpayers and the middle class workers that are employed by the giant companies. There benefits are cut, something the union never agreed to, but the FRAUD has been brainwashing the union workers effectively, making them believe he gives a damn about them! Cut in vacations, break times and money. The fraud has been working hard to screw the middle class every chance he can get!

  47. HillaryforTexas Says:

    April 24th, 2009 at 9:36 pm
    **************************************************

    Here here. I am telling you as crazy as it sounds, I would go in a heart beat. I need to get in better shape. Use to play soccer for 12 years and tore my ACL. I can get back in shape. I work with women 1/2 my age and out work them in the hospital. I think we are looking @ age discrimination . Wouldn’t want to be a hindrance to anyone, but let me at them….

  48. wbboei Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 12:16 am
    ****************************

    too funny
    ***************************************

    I did not like Russert myself, will never forget his aggression towards Hillary in the debates. Tried so hard to have a gotcha moment and poor Russert, the foot ended up in his mouth!. Don’t want to speak poorly of the deceased, but he was a horrible journalist and less of a human being IMHO.

  49. Russert was a great pawn for MSM networks; and they bestowed almost sainthood on him. Tonight the 6:30pm news anchor introduced Luke Russert as Tim’s son and their friend.

    Do you remember how you could tell that Elvis was NOT well [GonzoTX could explain it better than myself] by the weight that seemed to come on because of an unhealthy lifestyle, shall we say. His face and body was bloated, he looked as if he never slept, and it was very painful to see. Well, Tim Russert had that same look about him, with his drug of choice being that of helping to tank America. It seems to me Tim Russert did not wear that guilt well. Just MHO.

  50. Oops, the rest of message was cut off, but I meant to say that a theme this week is that Hillary and the some of the Clinton Democrats are kicking serious ass.

    Kind of a nice break from the usual pontificating from Barry Obama.

  51. Haven’t verified this — attributed as a recent statement by HRC:

    When I think about the suffering that I have seen, of women around the world. I’ve been in hospitals in Brazil, where half the women were enthusiastically and joyfully greeting new babies, and the other half were fighting for their lives against botched abortions. I’ve been in African countries where 12 and 13-year-old girls are bearing children. I have been in Asian countries where the denial of family planning consigns women to lives of oppression and hardship. So we have a very fundamental disagreement. . We happen to think that family planning is an important part of women’s health, and reproductive health includes access to abortion, that I believe should be safe, legal and rare.
    — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton

  52. Somebody from FOX should ask Mr. Gibbs whether Mr. Obama agrees with the Garafulo characterization of tea party participants as racists. If Gibbs continues to insist that Obama is unaware of them, then he should ask Gibbs whether Mr. Obama cares about voter reaction to his policies? I would not go futher and ask the direct question why is he unaware of the tea parties because even a dim wit like Gibbs can hit that one over the left field fence. . . well sir surely you know the Presidnet has been travelling to Europe, the Southern Hemisphere, the United Nations, engaging in important meeting, etc. Thats one question too many.

  53. April 24, 2009 AMERICAN THINKER
    Another Obama broken promise
    Ed Lasky

    Samantha lied; people died. Samantha Power, who was Obama’s number one foreign policy expert during the campaign and who now serves on the National Security Council, was seeking the support of the Armenian community during the campaign, and made promises on his behalf, stating he could be trusted.

    As seen in the followingYou Tube video, she pledged that Barack Obama would commemorate the Turkish genocide against the Armenian community in 1915. That he would speak truth about it; that he was a person of incredible integrity; that he was an acknowledger of the history and a true friend of the Armenian community. That he was known for truth telling and sometimes “hard” truth-telling.

    The spiel starts at 2:20. ( you will get sick listening to hear, I was screaming)

    youtube.com/watch?v=8yNt7XsV-Dg&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Eamericanthinker%2Ecom%2Fblog%2F2009%2F04%2Fanother%5Fobama%5Fbroken%5Fpromise%2Ehtml&feature=player_embedded

    Politico’s Ben Smith:

    But the reason it’s a worth noting is captured in this campaign video from Samantha Power, which made a big impression on Armenian-Americans, and in which she made the case that would bring “hard truth-telling” to the White House.

    “What is amazing about Barack,” she says, is, among other things, “his willingness as president to commemorate [the genocide] and certainly to call a spade a spade and to speak truth about it.”

    “He’s a person who can actually be trusted, which distinguishes him from some in the Washington culture,” she said.

    It’s an extremely painful issue to Obama’s Armenian supporters. One Armenian-American correspondent who often complains furiously of anti-Obama media bias, David Muradyan, emailed me this afternoon:

    Perhaps what stings more is his clever, yet deceitful way to say that his views have “not changed.” And his use of “Mets Yegern.” It’s almost like he wants to appease both sides but can’t because of political pressures. I understand that. But I think his statement is really deplorable. You can’t in one breath say “my views haven’t changed” (e.g., I still consider it Genocide PERSONALLY), but then use the word “atrocity” and not genocide. It really is a dishonest way to talk about the genocide. Either have the balls to call it genocide, or have the balls to not. But weaseling isn’t respected, period.

    Needless to say, when Obama appeared in front of the Turkish Parliament he remained all but silent on the Armenian genocide. Guess the Armenian genocide was one of those hard truths he just forgot to say.

    Is Barack Obama or Samantha Power now part of that Washington culture that cannot be trusted?

    I never trusted her to begin with and I was not alone: Noah Pollack at Commentary and Paul Mirengoff were very prescient about Samantha Power.

  54. Truth be told, no one ever really brings him up and his legacy is minimal.
    ————————————————
    But what a glorious funeral pumpkin head had. It was a three day orgie of big media buffoons doing eulogies and patting themselves on the back as competitors and successors wandered up to the casket when nobody was looking and made sure the corpse had no vital signs.

    Its ALIVEEEEEEEEEE! No, dont worry that is just an anatomical reaction nothing to worry about. Unless he is a vampire.

    The Priest then reads a brief eulogy with neerey a dry eye in the house and concludes with these words: Here lies our good friend, colleague and mentor Timothy Julius Russet. Nothing so distinguished him in life as leaving it and slipping the mortal coil. Amen.

  55. What is amazing about Barack,” she says, is, among other things, “his willingness as president to commemorate [the genocide] and certainly to call a spade a spade and to speak truth about it.”
    ********************************************
    Now why wasn’t she called RACIST!

  56. Nothing so distinguished him in life as leaving it and slipping the mortal coil. Amen.
    ************************************************
    I love your way with words wobboei

  57. Here is more on Samantha Power from someone who knows–Pollack. She reminds me of Lon Chaney Jr, and is a mile wide and six inches deep
    ————————————————————-

    It might be time that I downgraded my opinion of Samantha Power from someone who I believe holds naive and mischievous opinions on the Middle East to someone who for the most part simply doesn’t know what she’s talking about. She gave a must-read interview yesterday to Salon.com.

    What is the biggest foreign policy challenge for the next president?

    The next president is really going to have to walk and chew gum at the same time, because no long-term peace in the Middle East is possible until we get some kind of modus vivendi in the Arab-Israeli situation.

    Remarkable. Neither the Iraq war, nor the Iranian nuclear program, nor North Korean nuclear proliferation, nor the situation in Pakistan, nor the ascendant Iran-Syria-Hezbollah-Hamas axis, in Power’s assessment, is comparable to “the Arab-Israeli situation.” This is, of course, the view of the world one gets from watching too many Christiane Amanpour specials on CNN; but it is also one that has virtually no currency among serious people.

    You recently wrote in Time magazine that the U.S. needs to “rethink Iran.” What did you mean?

    …To neutralize the support Ahmadinejad has domestically, we need to stop threatening and to get in a room with him — if only to convey grave displeasure about his tactics regionally and internationally — and then try to build international support for measures to prevent him from supporting terrorism and pursuing a nuclear program. If we’re ever going to actually put in place multilateral measures to contain Iran, the only way we’re going to do that is if we do it in a more united way with our allies.

    To this, one can only reply: “Donny, you’re out of your element.” For starters, Ahmadinejad essentially has no domestic popularity in Iran. He is aggressively detested by everyone in the country with a reformist cast of mind, and he is widely blamed for crippling the Iranian economy through his imposition of some of the most half-baked centralized planning that exists in the world today. This Washington Post piece delves into Ahamadinejad’s domestic unpopularity; this piece from the Asia Times discusses his abysmal poll ratings. If Power thinks that we’re going to get anywhere with Iran by undermining Ahmadinejad’s “domestic support,” let me be the first to inform her: he doesn’t have any domestic support to begin with.

    But that’s just a nitpick. The real swindle here is Power’s implication that the U.S. has yet to pursue a multilateral strategy for dealing with the Iranian nuclear program, a fascinating rewriting of history. Between 2002 and 2006, the Bush administration delegated Iran diplomacy to the EU-3 (France, Germany, and the UK), specifically in pursuit of the cultivation of an international consensus against Iran’s nuclear program. The EU-3, working extensively through the IAEA — another of those international bodies that Power believes has been sidelined by the Bush administration — demonstrated nothing more than the ease with which it could be repeatedly manipulated and thwarted.

    By the summer of 2006, the matter was handed over to the UN Security Council, another multilateral lever. The Security Council has since then produced a series of wrist-slaps on Iran. Power’s complaint — that the U.S. hasn’t acted multilaterally — is a fantasy. The real problem with the past six years of Iran diplomacy is that the multilateral channels through which our diplomacy has found expression have proven themselves utterly incapable of dealing with the problem. But I suppose it’s much easier to give interviews to credulous Salon reporters and pretend that we never tried, rather than confront the much thornier problem — that we have been trying, and failing.

    Samantha Power believes that people like me, who raise perfectly legitimate questions about her judgment and knowledge of the Middle East, are trafficking in “fabrications” and a “smear campaign” against her and the Obama campaign. In everything I’ve written about her, including this post, I have always linked to what Power herself has said, so that readers could judge for themselves whether I’ve treated her fairly. Is it a smear to accuse someone of a smear, when none has been committed?

    UPDATE: Michael Young weighs in here: “the egghead smells a foreign policy post.“

  58. Be careful out there! Found @ Bitterpolitiz. Wash your hands and stay away from coughers. Wash those fruit!

    Friday, April 24, 2009

    (04-24) 20:57 PDT NEW YORK, (AP) —

    New York City health officials say that about 75 students at a Queens high school have fallen ill with flu-like symptoms and testing is under way to rule out the strain of swine flu that has killed dozens in Mexico.

    ——————————————————————————–
    More News
    Errant plane causes brief White House lock down 04.24.09
    Fed says gov’t ready to save stress-tested banks 04.24.09
    AP source: Craigslist suspect linked to RI hotel 04.24.09
    Woman charged with trying to extort Pitino 04.24.09

    ——————————————————————————–
    The Health Department’s Dr. Don Weiss said Friday that a team of agency doctors and investigators were dispatched to the private St. Francis Preparatory School the previous day after students reported fever, sore throat, cough, aches and pains. No one has been hospitalized.

    The handful of sick students who remained at the school were tested for a variety of flu strains. If they’re found to have a known human strain that would rule out swine flu.

    Results could take several days.

  59. wbboei Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 1:37 am
    ***************************************************

    Scary stuff. I really can not believe she has any role in foreign policy after her calling Hillary a MONSTER and having to leave the campaign. I really don’t know how Hillary can stand it.

    It goes to show the naive inexperience that is rampart in the Frauds inner circle. For Hillary it must be like teaching kindergarten every freaking day. Like the movie Ground Hog.

  60. They advised taking the Swine Flu shot when I was in college. I did because I was working with children. I was a walking dead person for three days and nights from the effects of that shot. I will never forget it. So, the swine flu is just getting here? Where were the warnings?

  61. Clinton, in Iraq, Blames ‘Rejectionists’ for Violence

    Published: April 25, 2009
    BAGHDAD — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton arrived here Saturday morning for a one-day visit, delivering an American show of support for Iraq as it battles a sudden eruption of violence, in the wake of suicide bombings that killed at least 140 people and wounded several hundred more on Thursday and Friday.

    Mrs. Clinton, in her first visit to Baghdad as secretary of state, acknowledged that the attacks were worrisome. She said she would seek a briefing on the security situation from the American military commander, Gen. Ray Odierno, in her first meeting on Saturday, a day packed with appointments.

    But she played down suggestions that the attacks augured a return to the relentless sectarian violence that convulsed Iraq in 2006. She said they did not signal that a new jihadist movement was taking root in Iraq, which could derail the progress the country has made in the last two years.

    “In Iraq, there will always be political conflicts,” Mrs. Clinton said to reporters before setting off on the unannounced visit Friday evening. “But I really believe that Iraq, as a whole, is on the right track.”

    She characterized the latest bout of violence as the last gasp of “rejectionists” who fear that the government will succeed in creating a united and peaceful Iraq. The suicide bombings, she said, are “in an unfortunately tragic way, a signal that the rejectionists fear that Iraq is going in the right direction.”

    “Are there going to be bad days? Yes, there are,” Mrs. Clinton said. But she added, “If you look at the evidence, overwhelmingly the progress that’s been made has been positive.”

    The Obama administration, she said, was determined to help Iraq achieve “stability, sovereignty, and self-reliance,” as the United States prepares to pull out the last of its troops by the end of 2011.

    Mrs. Clinton has been a regular visitor here, coming three times as a senator to chart the progress of a war she voted to authorize, but later said had been mismanaged by the Bush administration. She said she was pleased to be back, though the attacks have cast a shadow over her visit.

    While the violence is far below the worst levels in 2006, 18 major attacks this month have kindled fears that Baathist and jihadist elements could be reconstituting themselves into a smaller, but still deadly, insurgency that will exploit the withdrawal of American troops between now and 2011.

    Mrs. Clinton compared these latest suicide bombings to a spectacular terrorist attack that occurred several months after the Good Friday peace accord ended years of conflict in Northern Ireland.

    At times, her analysis almost echoed that of former Vice President Dick Cheney and former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. When the sectarian violence was relentless several years ago, Mr. Cheney spoke of the insurgency being in its “last throes,” while Mr. Rumsfeld talked of “dead-enders” who kept fighting a lost cause.

    On Friday, Gen. David Petraeus, the head of the military’s Central Command, testified before a House appropriations committee that the suicide bombers may have been part of a militant network based in Tunisia. Four of the bombers, he said, were from Tunisia.

    Mrs. Clinton said she did not have specific information on the bombers, but said: “We’ve seen suicide bombers from many countries in Iraq over the last six years. It’s unfortunate that young men, and occasionally even a young woman, would travel to Iraq to kill other people in that way.”

    The violence did not seem to curtail Mrs. Clinton’s ambitions for her brief visit. In addition to General Odierno, she was scheduled to meet a retinue of Iraqi leaders, including the president, Jalal Talabani; the prime minister, Nuri Kamal al-Maliki; and the foreign minister, Hoshyar Zebari.

    She is also playing host at a roundtable of Iraqi women, something she has done in previous trips to Iraq. And she is to hold a town-hall meeting with Iraqi students, as well as members of nongovernmental organizations and provincial reconstruction teams.

    This is a format Mrs. Clinton savored as a presidential candidate, and that, as secretary of state, she has used from South Korea to Turkey. “I want to listen,” she said, “I want to respond to their questions and concerns. I want some feedback and ideas of about how are we going to make this transition as successful as possible.”

    When President Obama visited Baghdad earlier this month, dusty skies prevented him from traveling by helicopter from Baghdad International Airport into the city. He met with Mr. Maliki at a palace near the airport and General Odierno at the American base, Camp Victory.

    The new American ambassador, Christopher R. Hill, beat Mrs. Clinton to Baghdad by one day. He was confirmed by the Senate on Tuesday after a lengthy process that was held up by Republican senators, who objected to his lack of experience in the Arab world and his handling of negotiations with North Korea over its nuclear weapons program.

    In Iraq, Mr. Hill will spearhead the shift in emphasis by the United States from military to civilian operations. Some Iraq experts said the American civilian presence here had been lacking momentum since the departure in February of the last United States ambassador, Ryan C. Crocker.
    ***********************************************

    The Fraud ran for cover and Hillary shows her Ovarian Fortitude. He has as one Tea party sign in Austin said… Testiculous Minimus

  62. ShortTermer Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 1:59 am
    *******************************************
    There weren’t any. See above post gonzotx Says:

    April 24th, 2009 at 7:40 pm

  63. Torture works. Torture anyone who denies that torture works and you will force them to say torture works
    —————————————————–
    Admin.: nice turn of a phase.

  64. wbboei Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 2:09 am
    ***********************************************

    I have been arguing that point @ NQ. I really don’t like going over there too often, Larry has some issues lets just say.

  65. Let’s make it simple. Anyone who performed (or authorized) any of these actions … should have the same action performed on him. Then it doesn’t matter how the action is labeled.

    If he thinks the action was justified — then he should be willing to pay the price himself, too.

  66. Re NQ, I haven’t been over there lately. I did ask a bottom line question on the pirate rescue, but haven’t seen an answer:

    “Did the miliatry get every authorization they wanted as SOON as they asked for it?”

  67. A Government Bailout For The New York Times?
    By Don Feder
    Monday January 5, 2009

    Here’s an idea so atrocious that that it should send shivers down the spines of those who are fighting media bias — forcing taxpayers to subsidize said bias.

    Many newspapers are in serious financial trouble, due to a number of factors — including alienating former subscribers with bias so blatant that it leaps off the pages.

    The New York Times saw its ad revenue fall 16.2% from October 2007 to October 2008. Last year, its stock lost 66.8% of its value. The paper is planning to take out a $225-million mortgage on its Manhattan headquarters to cover operating deficits.

    No surprise, then, that one of the bright boys in the mainstream media wants a bailout for the liberal press. A Reuters story, “Government Aid Could Save U.S. Newspapers, Spark Debate,” is a trial balloon.

    Former Miami Herald editor Tom Fiedler, now the dean of the Boston University School of Communications, thinks it’s a capital notion. “I truly believe that no democracy can remain healthy without an equally healthy press,” Fiedler confides. “Thus it is in democracy’s interest to support the press in the same sense that the human being doesn’t hesitate to take medicine when his or her health is threatened.”

    If the public must subsidize failing newspapers, why not television news shows, radio stations and Internet news sites as well?

    Of course, Washington can’t provide a bailout to every newspaper that’s on the verge of going under. So which newspapers get bailed out and which are allowed to close? Clearly media outlets favored by the political elite will get the subsidies — The New York Times and not The Washington Times, The Washington Post and not The New York Post.

    Instead of promoting democracy, newspaper bailouts would short-circuit the democratic process. Every time you buy (or subscribe to) a newspaper, you’re voting with your dollars for those you trust to report the news accurately and objectively.

    Just as it is intent on overriding consumer choice regarding talk radio (by resurrecting the Fairness Doctrine), the left wants to force consumers to bailout its pet press.

  68. I have been arguing that point @ NQ. I really don’t like going over there too often, Larry has some issues lets just say
    ——————————————
    Yes he does.

  69. Mr. Obama has managed to damage CIA morale, and accused them of making mistakes when all they did was execute policy. Bambi puts another foot in his mouth, which makes 12 this week. Pretty soon he will run out of feet.
    ————————————————
    Obama Administration to Release Detainee Abuse Photos; Former CIA Official Says Former Colleagues ‘Don’t Believe They Have Cover Anymore’
    April 24, 2009 10:23 AM

    In a letter from the Justice Department to a federal judge yesterday, the Obama administration announced that the Pentagon would turn over to the American Civil Liberties Union 44 photographs showing detainee abuse of prisoners in Afghanistan and Iraq during the Bush administration.

    The photographs are part of a 2003 Freedom of Information Act request by the ACLU for all information relating to the treatment of detainees — the same battle that led, last week, to President Obama’s decision to release memos from the Bush Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel providing legal justifications for harsh interrogation methods that human rights groups call torture.

    Courts had ruled against the Bush administration’s attempts to keep the photographs from public view. ACLU attorney Amrit Singh tells ABC News that “the fact that the Obama administration opted not to seek further review is a sign that it is committed to more transparency.”

    Singh added that the photographs “only underscore the need for a criminal investigation and prosecution if warranted” of U.S. officials responsible for the harsh treatment of detainees.

    But some experts say the move could have a chilling effect on the CIA even beyond President Obama’s decision last week to release the so-called “torture memos.”

    Calling the ACLU push to release the photographs “prurient” and “reprehensible,” Dr. Mark M. Lowenthal, former Assistant Director of Central Intelligence for Analysis and Production, tells ABC News that the Obama administration should have taken the case all the way to the Supreme Court.

    “They should have fought it all the way; if they lost, they lost,” said Lowenthal, who retired from the Agency in 2005. “There’s nothing to be gained from it. There’s no substantive reason why those photos have to be released.”

    Lowenthal said the president’s moves in the last week have left many in the CIA dispirited, based on “the undercurrent I’ve been getting from colleagues still in the building, or colleagues who have left not that long ago.”

    “We ask these people to do extremely dangerous things, things they’ve been ordered to do by legal authorities, with the understanding that they will get top cover if something goes wrong,” Lowenthal says. “They don’t believe they have that cover anymore.” Releasing the photographs “will make it much worse,” he said.

    Even though President Obama has announced that the Justice Department will not prosecute CIA officers who were operating within the four corners of what they’d been told was the law, Lowenthal says members of the CIA are worried. “They feel exposed already, and this is going to increase drumbeat for an investigation or a commission” to explore detainee treatment during the Bush years, he said. “It’s going to make it much harder to resist, and they fear they’re then going to be thrown over.”

    The Bush administration argued that releasing these photographs would violate US obligations towards detainees and would prompt outrage and perhaps attacks against the U.S. On June 9 and June 21, 2006 judges directed the Bush administration to release 21 photographs depicting the treatment of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan, and last September, the Second Circuit Court affirmed that decision.

    The Bush administration had argued that an exemption from FOIA was needed here because of the exemption for law enforcement records that could reasonably be expected to endanger “any individual.” The release of the disputed photographs, the Bush administration argued, will endanger United States troops, other Coalition forces, and civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    But the court found that the exemption was not intended “as an all-purpose damper on global controversy.”

    The Bush administration had also argued that releasing the photographs would violated the Geneva Conventions, which protect prisoners of war and detained civilians “against insults and public curiosity.” The court ruled that the Geneva Conventions “do not prohibit dissemination of images of detainees being abused when the images are redacted so as to protect the identities of the detainees, at least in situations where, as here, the purpose of the dissemination is not itself to humiliate the detainees.”

    Moreover, the court found that releasing “the photographs is likely to further the purposes of the Geneva Conventions by deterring future abuse of prisoners.”

    “There is a significant public interest in the disclosure of these photographs,” the court ruled. “The defendants concede that these photographs yield evidence of governmental wrongdoing, but nonetheless argue that they add little additional value to the written summaries of the depicted events, which have already been made public. This contention disregards FOIA’s central purpose of furthering governmental accountability, and the special importance the law accords to information revealing official misconduct.”

    A November 6, 2008, petition for a re-hearing was denied last month.

    The Obama administration could have opted to go all the way to the Supreme Court to try to keep these photographs from public view, but yesterday Acting U.S. Attorney Lev L. Dassin wrote to District Judge Alvin Hellerstein and said the Pentagon was preparing to release 21 photos at issue in the appeal, in addition to 23 others “previously identified as responsive.”

    The materials will be released to the ACLU no later than May 28, after which the ACLU says it will make them public. This release will come just days before President Obama travels to the volatile Middle East.

    Dassin wrote that the Pentagon also was “processing for release a substantial number of other images contained in Army CID reports that have been closed during the pendency of this case.”

    Singh said in a statement that the photographs “will constitute visual proof that, unlike the Bush administration’s claim, the abuse was not confined to Abu Ghraib and was not aberrational. Their disclosure is critical for helping the public understand the scope and scale of prisoner abuse as well as for holding senior officials accountable for authorizing or permitting such abuse.”

    Lowenthal said his former colleagues at the CIA were “put off” by President Obama’s trip to the CIA earlier this week. “I don’t think the president’s speech went down very well, particularly the part when he said they made mistakes. They don’t think they made mistakes. They think they acted to execute policy. And those in the intelligence service don’t make policy.”

    Those in intelligence are “gong to become increasingly wary about doing dangerous things,” Lowenthal said. “They feel at the end of the day they won’t be covered. It’s not irreparable right now, but it’s problematic.”

    — jpt

    April 24, 2009 | Permalink | User Comments (1440)

  70. Admin- please embed

    Cheney admits approving water-boarding

    youtube.com/watch?v=H9AFBN3bHtE

    December 17 2008

  71. We like investigations. We want to know the truth. But we want the full truth, not a fake investigation which protects Dimocrats and is a political vendetta to harm Republicans and burnish boob Obama.

    Paul Krugman and others today are calling for an investigation on torture. But any investigation cannot be a victory for hypocrites like Pelosi. An investigation cannot be a hding place for hypocrites like Obama who “want to be on both sides of every debate…”

    Let’s have an investigation and let’s get everyone on the record.

    Let’s have a Truth Commission and let’s get to the bottom of all the rot.

    Barack Obama opened the doors but now he wants to shut down an investigation for the “truth”.

    The last thing Obama wants is an investigation into the truth. When the hunt for the “truth” commences it is Obama who fears the hounds the most.

    For Obama and his Dimocrats, the truth is torture.
    ————————————————-
    Admin. very well written. I particularly like teh phrase: for Obama and his dims, the truth is torture.

  72. Good morning

    wbboei I would change that phrase only slightly to: For Obama, his dims, and the super duds, the truth is torture. I don’t ever want anyone to forget what happened in Denver.

  73. GONZO!

    In the NYPost today, 75 kids from a Queens HS have come down with flu.

    No word yet if it’s swine flu.

    Go to NYpost dot com to check it out.

  74. “Yahoo title: 100 days for Obama: hipness is what it is”

    Well hop it….no need for hip hop ZERO in the WH.
    We need a PRESIDENT not a hip TOTUS!!!

  75. turndownobama-com Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 2:25 am
    Let’s make it simple. Anyone who performed (or authorized) any of these actions … should have the same action performed on him. Then it doesn’t matter how the action is labeled.

    If he thinks the action was justified — then he should be willing to pay the price himself, too.
    **************************************
    When I take over a plane and ram it into a skyscraper, then you will have the right to ask me to be waterboarded…or beheaded. Guess there is no difference… If I get your drift right.

  76. From our sisters and brothers @ Bitterpolitiz this Am
    ************************************

    Security Before Politics

    By Porter J. Goss
    Saturday, April 25, 2009

    Since leaving my post as CIA director almost three years ago, I have remained largely silent on the public stage. I am speaking out now because I feel our government has crossed the red line between properly protecting our national security and trying to gain partisan political advantage. We can’t have a secret intelligence service if we keep giving away all the secrets. Americans have to decide now.

    A disturbing epidemic of amnesia seems to be plaguing my former colleagues on Capitol Hill. After the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, members of the committees charged with overseeing our nation’s intelligence services had no higher priority than stopping al-Qaeda. In the fall of 2002, while I was chairman of the House intelligence committee, senior members of Congress were briefed on the CIA’s “High Value Terrorist Program,” including the development of “enhanced interrogation techniques” and what those techniques were. This was not a one-time briefing but an ongoing subject with lots of back and forth between those members and the briefers.

    Today, I am slack-jawed to read that members claim to have not understood that the techniques on which they were briefed were to actually be employed; or that specific techniques such as “waterboarding” were never mentioned. It must be hard for most Americans of common sense to imagine how a member of Congress can forget being told about the interrogations of Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed. In that case, though, perhaps it is not amnesia but political expedience.

    Let me be clear. It is my recollection that:

    – The chairs and the ranking minority members of the House and Senate intelligence committees, known as the Gang of Four, were briefed that the CIA was holding and interrogating high-value terrorists.

    – We understood what the CIA was doing.

    – We gave the CIA our bipartisan support.

    – We gave the CIA funding to carry out its activities.

    – On a bipartisan basis, we asked if the CIA needed more support from Congress to carry out its mission against al-Qaeda.

    I do not recall a single objection from my colleagues. They did not vote to stop authorizing CIA funding. And for those who now reveal filed “memorandums for the record” suggesting concern, real concern should have been expressed immediately — to the committee chairs, the briefers, the House speaker or minority leader, the CIA director or the president’s national security adviser — and not quietly filed away in case the day came when the political winds shifted. And shifted they have.

    Circuses are not new in Washington, and I can see preparations being made for tents from the Capitol straight down Pennsylvania Avenue. The CIA has been pulled into the center ring before. The result this time will be the same: a hollowed-out service of diminished capabilities. After Sept. 11, the general outcry was, “Why don’t we have better overseas capabilities?” I fear that in the years to come this refrain will be heard again: once a threat — or God forbid, another successful attack — captures our attention and sends the pendulum swinging back. There is only one person who can shut down this dangerous show: President Obama.

    Unfortunately, much of the damage to our capabilities has already been done. It is certainly not trust that is fostered when intelligence officers are told one day “I have your back” only to learn a day later that a knife is being held to it. After the events of this week, morale at the CIA has been shaken to its foundation.

    We must not forget: Our intelligence allies overseas view our inability to maintain secrecy as a reason to question our worthiness as a partner. These allies have been vital in almost every capture of a terrorist.

    The suggestion that we are safer now because information about interrogation techniques is in the public domain conjures up images of unicorns and fairy dust. We have given our enemy invaluable information about the rules by which we operate. The terrorists captured by the CIA perfected the act of beheading innocents using dull knives. Khalid Sheik Mohammed boasted of the tactic of placing explosives high enough in a building to ensure that innocents trapped above would die if they tried to escape through windows. There is simply no comparison between our professionalism and their brutality.

    Our enemies do not subscribe to the rules of the Marquis of Queensbury. “Name, rank and serial number” does not apply to non-state actors but is, regrettably, the only question this administration wants us to ask. Instead of taking risks, our intelligence officers will soon resort to wordsmithing cables to headquarters while opportunities to neutralize brutal radicals are lost.

    The days of fortress America are gone. We are the world’s superpower. We can sit on our hands or we can become engaged to improve global human conditions. The bottom line is that we cannot succeed unless we have good intelligence. Trading security for partisan political popularity will ensure that our secrets are not secret and that our intelligence is destined to fail us.

    The writer, a Republican, was director of the CIA from September 2004 to May 2006 and was chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence from 1997 to 2004.

    washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/24/AR2009042403339.html

  77. will this violoation of eminent domain law be coming to your town???

    Tickets For Parking In Own Driveway – DC

    Driveways in D.C. Now a No-Parking Zone

    April 24, 2009

    Beverly Anderson is mad as hell. She just started to get tickets for parking in her own driveway.

    That’s right. The District of Columbia is ticketing people who park their cars in their own driveways.

    “This is clearly an attempt by the city to extort money out of property owners,” Anderson tells WTOP.

    Anderson has received two of the $20 tickets in the past month. Anderson has owned the Capitol Hill house (and the driveway, so she thought) for more than ten years and has never gotten a ticket. And she’s not alone.

    It seems Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton has also been breaking the law in the eyes of the D.C. Department of Public Works.

    “Not only has the Congresswoman been ticketed in her own driveway, she has received a towing ticket on her car parked in her driveway,”
    sweetness-light.com/archive/dc-res-ticketed-for-parking-in-own-driveways

  78. gonzotx Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 11:05 am
    From our sisters and brothers @ Bitterpolitiz this Am
    ************************************

    Security Before Politics

    By Porter J. Goss
    ——————-

    Well, that about sums it up. Too bad Bambi opened the door by releasing the critical information. Now that he has, the show must go on. Public hearings are now essential–and all culpable parties on both sides of the aisles must be held accountable.

    The Administation preference for international institutions over domestic ones has been on full display before, so why not here?

    I believe Pelosi should be charged as an accomplice in War Crimes and summoned to appear as a defendant at the International Court of Justice at the Hague. And, since we are all keen on reaching out to the Muslim world, I further believe that when her case comes before the docket, an Iranian or Pakistani Taliban member sits as Chief Judge.

    Knowing how keen defense lawyers are in making sure their clients dress in a manner befitting the sensibilities of the court, she could wear a veil to disguise the five face lifts.

  79. Those in intelligence are “gong to become increasingly wary about doing dangerous things [ie torture] ,” Lowenthal said.

    ===================

    GOOD!

    Imo the photos should not have been released, the whole thing should have been covered up. But at least one good result is that they will be discouraged from doing it in future.

  80. After the events of this week, morale at the CIA has been shaken to its foundation.

    ============

    GOOD!

  81. turndownobama-com Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 12:26 pm
    After the events of this week, morale at the CIA has been shaken to its foundation.

    ============

    GOOD!
    turndownobama-com Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 12:18 pm
    Those in intelligence are “gong to become increasingly wary about doing dangerous things [ie torture] ,” Lowenthal said.

    ===================

    GOOD!

    Imo the photos should not have been released, the whole thing should have been covered up. But at least one good result is that they will be discouraged from doing it in future
    ***********************************************

    Ah, to be so naive.

  82. I believe Pelosi should be charged as an accomplice in War Crimes and summoned to appear as a defendant at the International Court of Justice at the Hague. And, since we are all keen on reaching out to the Muslim world, I further believe that when her case comes before the docket, an Iranian or Pakistani Taliban member sits as Chief Judge.

    =======================

    Aw, just let one of them question her first.

  83. djia Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 11:22 am
    will this violoation of eminent domain law be coming to your town???
    **********************************************

    Got to pay for all those socialist programs!

  84. Since Mothers Day is coming up and I will soon be in the company of stupid in laws who are pleased as punch with Bambi, after we get through all the polite meaningless words, what have you been doing (as if I really cared) the question from one of them is sure to be–so how do you think Barack is doing?

    What do you say. My mom does not like fighting in the family. So you are somewhat constrained. And yelling and knife fights with buttter knives can get you thrown out before you have had a chance to pay the bill. So do you deal with those imponderables?

    I dunno. But this is what I am thinking.

    Mr. Obama has not disappointed me one bit. He is doing exactly what I expected–adopting economic policies politices which will bankrupt the country, diminish our standard of living and destroy our liberty. Meanwhile he is projecting weakness on the international front. He pretends to be the opposite of Bush when in fact the style is different but the substance is not. And only now are people starting to wake up. Der Speigel article.

    Granted this is not what you are getting from big media. But you have to undertand the Faustian Pact that has been struck there. GE. If you want to know what is really going on you must go to the internet and to the few websites that have the courage to tell the truth. The most accurate source you will find is Hillaryis44. I commend it to you.

  85. wbboei Says:
    April 25th, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    =================

    “Well, reports are mixed. I think hiring Hillary as SOS was a great move, and Summers and other people from the 90s. But since then, Rasmussen shows his Presidential Approval Index going down ” etc etc.

  86. wbboei Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 12:30 pm
    ***********************************************

    Bring along some picture of the “NEW TERRORISTS”, you know, those who served for their right to have a peaceful Mothers Day, and of course,pictures of the tea parties that included the children and right wing terrorist elderly. Ask them to make up a bedroom for their new Chinese terrorist that the fraud is going tor release and PAY their way
    in this country very soon.
    I think it is THEIR patriotic duty to do this. They voted for them, they can house them!

  87. Here are the gems of practical wisdom that inform the thinking of Thomas Sowell. I had the pleasure of meeting him at an event for Hillsdale College a decade or so ago. He is a great thinker and a great guy. To be a student in his classroom would be an enrichening experience for sure.
    ——————————————————–

    …I wish that I may never think the smiles of the great and powerful a sufficient inducement to turn aside from the straight path of honesty and the convictions of my own mind.

    –David Ricardo1

    The study of history is a powerful antidote to contemporary arrogance. It is humbling to discover how many of our glib assumptions, which seem to us novel and plausible, have been tested before, not once but many times and in innumerable guises; and discovered to be, at great human cost, wholly false.

    –Paul Johnson2

    Half the harm that is done in this world is due to people who want to feel important. They don’t mean to do harm– but the harm does not interest them. Or they do not see it, or they justify it because they are absorbed in the endless struggle to think well of themselves.

    — T. S. ELiot3

    There is no safety for honest men but by believing all possible evil of evil men.

    –Edmund Burke4

    …you can never be happy and dress yourself solely in the glass of other men’s approval.

    –Nicholas Flood Davis5

    If I could think that I had sent a spark to those who come after I should be ready to say Goodbye.

    –Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes6

    We shall not grow wiser before we learn that much that we have done was very foolish.

    — F. A. Hayek7

    You know, doing what is right is easy. The problem is knowing what is right.

    –Lyndon B. Johnson8

    The first thing a man will do for his ideals is lie.

    –Joseph A. Schumpeter9

    Civilization is not inherited; it has to be learned and earned by each generation anew; if the transmission should be interrupted for one century, civilization would die, and we should be savages again.

    –Will and Ariel Durant10

    Certainly, it is a world of scarcity. But the scarcity is not confined to iron ore and arable land. The most constricting scarcities are those of character and personality.

    –William R. Allen11

    The task of weaning various people and groups from the national nipple will not be easy. The sound of whines, bawls, screams and invective will fill the air as the agony of withdrawal pangs finds voice.

    –Linda Bowles12

    This war was a revolution against the moral basis of civilization. It was conceived by the Nazis in conscious contempt for the life, dignity and freedom of individual man and deliberately prosecuted by means of slavery, starvation and the mass destruction of noncombatants’ lives. It was a revolution against the human soul.

    –Time, May 14, 194513

    The gods mercifully gave mankind this little moment of peace between the religious fanaticisms of the past and the fanaticisms of class and race that were speedily to arise and dominate time to come.

    — G. M. Trevelyan14

    Publicly inconsolable about the fact that racism continues, these activists seem privately terrified that it has abated.

    –Dinesh D’Souza15

    Everybody has asked the question. . .”What shall we do with the Negro?” I have had but one answer from the beginning. Do nothing with us! Your doing with us has already played the mischief with us. Do nothing with us! If the apples will not remain on the tree of their own strength, if they are wormeaten at the core, if they are early ripe and disposed to fall, let them fall! I am not for tying or fastening them on the tree in any way, except by nature’s plan, and if they will not stay there, let them fall. And if the Negro cannot stand on his own legs, let him fall also. All I ask is, give him a chance to stand on his own legs! Let him alone!

    –Frederick Douglass16

    Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

    — C. S. Lewis17

    …mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent…

    –Adam Smith18

    Examine the records of history, recollect what has happened within the circle of your own experience, consider with attention what has been the conduct of almost all the greatly unfortunate, either in private or public life, whom you may have either read of, or hear of, or remember, and you will find that the misfortunes of by far the greater part of them have arisen from their not knowing when they were well, when it was proper for them to set still and to be contented.

    –Adam Smith19

    The quality of ideas seems to play a minor role in mass movement leadership. What counts is the arrogant gesture, the complete disregard of the opinion of others, the singlehanded defiance of the world.

    –Eric Hoffer20

    There are many who find a good alibi far more attractive than an achievement. For an achievement does not settle anything permanently. We still have to prove our worth anew each day: we have to prove that we are as good today as we were yesterday. But when we have a valid alibi for not achieving anything we are fixed, so to speak, for life.

    –Eric Hoffer 21

    A ruling intelligentsia, whether in Europe, Asia or Africa, treats the masses as raw material to be experimented on, processed, and wasted at will.

    –Eric Hoffer22

    The intellectuals and the young, booted and spurred, feel themselves born to ride us.

    –Eric Hoffer23

    Nowhere at present is there such a measureless loathing of their country by educated people as in America.

    –Eric Hoffer24

    From my earliest childhood I have been toiling & wearing my heart out for other people, who took all I could do & suffer for them as no more than their just dues.

    –John Randolph25

    . . .time misspent and faculties mis-employed, and senses jaded by labor, or impaired by excess, cannot be recalled any more than that freshness of the heart, before it has become aware of the deceits of others, and of its own.

    –John Randolph26

    Alas, how many have been persecuted for the wrong of having been right?

    –Jean-Baptiste Say27

    To put meaning in one’s life may end in madness,
    But life without meaning is the torture
    Of restlessness and vague desire–
    It is a boat longing for the sea and yet afraid.

    –Edgar Lee Masters28

    N O T E S
    The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, Vol. VII, p. 372.
    Paul Johnson, The Quotable Paul Johnson: A Topical Compilation of His Wit, Wisdom and Satire, edited by George J. Marlin, et al (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1994), p. 138.
    T. S. Eliot, The Cocktail Party, (London: Faber and Faber, 1974), p. 111.
    Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France, p. 249.
    Nicholas Flood Davis, The Irishman in Canada, p. vii.
    Oliver Wendell Holmes, The Mind and Faith of Justice Holmes, edited by Max Lerner (New York: Modern Library), p. 451.
    Friedrich A. Hayek, The Road to Serfdom (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1972)
    Robert L. Hardesty, The Johnson Years: The Difference He Made (Austin: Lyndon Baines Johnson Library, 1993), p. 181.
    Joseph A. Schumpeter, History of Economic Analysis (New York: Oxford University Press, 1954), p. 43n.
    Will and Ariel Durant, The Lessons of History, p. 101.
    William R. Allen, “Bunnie Rabbit, Winnie, and the Grand Plan,” California Political Review, Winter 1993, p. 13.
    Linda Bowles, “The Weaning Process, ” Washington Times, December 20, 1994, p. A16.
    Time, May 14, 1945, p. 17.
    G. M. Trevelyan, English Social History, p. 354.
    Dinesh D’Souza, The End of Racism: Principles for a Multiracial Society (New York: The Free Press, 1995), p. 554.
    Frederick Douglass, “What the Black Man Wants,” Negro Social and Political Thought 1850-1920: Representative Texts, edited by Howard Brotz (New York: Basic Books, Inc. 1962), p. 283.
    C. S. Lewis, God in the Dock (Grand Rapids: W.B. Eerdmans,2002), p. 292.
    Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, p. 170.
    Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, p. 252.
    Eric Hoffer, The True Believer, p. 107.
    Eric Hoffer, The Passionate State of Mind, p. 181.
    Eric Hoffer, The Temper of Our Time, p. 83.
    Eric Hoffer, First Things, Last Things, p. 65.
    Eric Hoffer, First Things, Last Things, p. 71.
    John Randolph, Collected Letters of John Randolph of Roanoke to Dr. John Brockenbrough, 1812-1833, edited by Kenneth Shorey (New Brunswick, N. J.: Transaction Books, 1988), p. 124
    John Randolph, Collected Letters of John Randolph of Roanoke to Dr. John Brockenbrough: 1812-1833, edited by Kenneth Shorey (New Brunswick, N. J.: Transaction Books, 1988), p. 53
    Jeam-Baptiste Say, An Economist in Troubled Times: Writings Selected and Translated by R. R. Palmer (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1997), p. 154.
    Edgar Lee Masters, Spoon River Anthology (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1997), p.87.

  88. great clip of our Hillary putting the condescending males in their place…

    youtube.com/watch?v=5W-iP_oejJ8&eurl

    Hillary is so smart, brave and direct…so Presidential…

  89. Sowell cites Eric Hoffer–the longshoreman and philosopher from the San Francisco Bay Area a generation ago. He was a longshoreman before the days of containerization, which meant he had to work for his money. Someday, when we have time, I will explain how it is today. In the next life I must remember to come back as a longshoreman. Big money, lots of golf and a good bunch of people. They do not like their employers however. How would you like a job where you were paid 35 dollars and got to decide which employer you wanted to work for or whether you even wanted to work that day. It would be too marvelous, too marvleous for word. If you become a crane operator then you are looking at $200-300,000 per year if you are any good. Hoffer was born too early to enjoy that kind of income. He was a member of the working class whose sensibilities were shaped by the great depression and he followed the migratory patterns of the agricultural workers as well. Steinbeck wrote about that and produced wonderful stories, but merely scratched the surface.

  90. The gods mercifully gave mankind this little moment of peace between the religious fanaticisms of the past and the fanaticisms of class and race that were speedily to arise and dominate time to come.

    – G. M. Trevelyan14

    =====================

    Ah!!! And what moment was that?

  91. Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

    – C. S. Lewis17

    =================

    Rightwingers quote this a lot against ‘nanny state.’ But Lewis was very much against trying to impose Christian rules (such as against divorce or against rum by gum) by law on all citizens. He was very clear on separation of church and state.

    Istr that his target in the above passage was something other than what Rightwingers now oppose….

  92. From Daily-protest.com

    wobboei, for your in-laws….

    Friday, April 24, 2009
    DAY-19, CHASE BANK PROTEST, PEGGY from Pennsylvania lets Chase Bank have it on CNBC, Transcript below. Just how low can Chase Bank Go?

    MEET PEGGY. READ HER CHASE BANK NIGHTMARE STORY BELOW

    Peggy from Pennsylvania was on CNBC’s “On the Money” earlier today talking about how Chase Bank has reneged on a promise of a 3.99 percent loan for the life of the loan agreement. Chase Bank continues to lie to congress and television by saying they did offer opt out options to their customers, when they deprived 400,000 of their most trustworthy customers the opt out option!

    Peggy’s family has so far survived a bout of cancer to one family member and a tumor scare to another member, but can they survive the Chase Bank “Change in Terms” policy that wreaks havoc on families that have never been late on their credit card payments?

    Below is a Daily-Protest.com transcript exclusive of what Peggy had to say on CNBC’s On the Money television show.
    Peggy in Pennsylvania, you’re up and you’ve got some credit card rage, talk to us.

    Well, my husband and I have three businesses, he’s an attorney, we own a bed and breakfast and we have more than 30 rental units, and for decades we have always paid every, every payment on time, never missed a payment.

    In 2003 my husband got cancer, my son had a tumor, we we had huge medical bills and we still kept up with everything but in 2005 Chase Bank offered us a 38,000 dollar loan at 3.99% for the life of the loan, and we took it to consolidate some of the expenses we’d had in keeping our businesses afloat while he was sick.
    CHASE BANK SHOWS HOW EAGER THEY ARE TO TURN MORE PROFIT BY BEATING UP ON THE ELDERLY, THE CANCER STRICKEN, AND THOSE WHO ARE NEVER LATE ON THEIR PAYMENTS.

    Then after paying half of it off, um, in December (of 2008) we got a notice that there was a change in terms, and instead of paying 2% per month which was around 400 dollars in December.

    Our January payment was a 1,025 dollars, because they were requiring 5% payment. And I called to opt out because every change in terms I’d ever seen on any credit card allows the customer to opt out, only to find out that Chase Bank is not allowing an opt out on this.

    The only thing they offered me was if I wanted to more than double the interest rate they would take me back to the 2% interest per month which I was not willing to do. CHASE BANK CHANGES TERMS ON SIXTY YEAR OLD WOMAN AND HER CANCER STRICKEN FAMILY WITHOUT OFFERING AN OPT OUT OPTION.

    Is there anything I can do after Chase testifies in front of congress that they offer an opt out, when they have a change in terms with no opt out for over 400,000 customers ???

  93. I believe Pelosi should be charged as an accomplice in War Crimes and summoned to appear as a defendant at the International Court of Justice at the Hague. .
    ***********
    With the new information about what she knew and when she knew it, there is no need for “The Hague”.

    “The War Crimes Act of 1996, a federal statute set forth at 18 U.S.C. § 2441, makes it a federal crime for any U.S. national, whether military or civilian, to violate the Geneva Convention by engaging in murder, torture, or inhuman treatment.
    The statute applies not only to those who carry out the acts, but also to those who ORDER IT, know about it, or fail to take steps to stop it. The statute applies to everyone, no matter how high and mighty.
    ww.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=13218

  94. The reason Pelosi et. al are lying their asses off is the bit about:”The statute applies not only to those who carry out the acts, but also to those who ORDER IT, know about it, or fail to take steps to stop it.”

    She knew about it and failed to takes steps to stop it…If convicted and if it can be established that anyone died while being tortured, the maximum sentence is Death under US Law.

  95. great clip of our Hillary putting the condescending males in their place…

    youtube.com/watch?v=5W-iP_oejJ8&eurl

    Hillary is so smart, brave and direct…so Presidential…
    ————————————————-
    S: that is the Hillary I prefer to see. The response in unassailable in terms of its tone and substance. It elevates her above the partisan tone in a way that the Cheney comment did not. This is the best way to showcase her talents and to work toward bi-partian solutions. Ad hominum attacks are not in her interest. Obama can face the fury on his own, or let the media do his bidding. The way she left this one, there is no headline, and how does the republican answer this. I hope she sticks to this path in the future.

  96. Rightwingers quote this a lot against ‘nanny state.’ But Lewis was very much against trying to impose Christian rules (such as against divorce or against rum by gum) by law on all citizens. He was very clear on separation of church and state.

    Istr that his target in the above passage was something other than what Rightwingers now oppose….
    ——————————-
    The observation he made applies to both ends of the political spectrum. The right has its commitment to Judae Christian religious doctrine and the left has its commitment to the secular religion of the State. To the first, Christ said render unto God what is Gods and Caesar what is Caesars–translation: but out. To the second, Hitler said today Europe, tomorrow the world.

  97. S Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 1:08 pm
    great clip of our Hillary putting the condescending males in their place…
    *******************************************

    It really was the perfect answer. She knew it was coming

  98. gonzo,

    I think I’m in basic agreement with HillaryforTX, admin, and Bill whatshisname … oh, Bill Clinton.

    Yes, there are times to run a red light. But we don’t change the law, or write in an exception. When a driver really has a good reason that stands up to his peers, then they let him off, one way or another. (In national security, it should all be in secret, imo.)

    As others said, there has to be a price. These choices to disobey the standard need to be kept RARE. There has to be a deterrent. When secrecy is not necessary (jusfitifable homicide), then the penalty is having to stand trial.

    Of course I’m not seriously thinking the government would do this — but morally I think that a suitable deterrent would be, “What you do to the prisoner, is done to you also, asap.”

    If the information is important enough, and the ‘process’ is mild enough — the questioner shouldn’t hesitate at enduring the same thing for the good cause.

  99. turndown: it is the subplot of every war movie of the 1950s–what they have to do to complete the mission is to go beyond the book because the guy who wrote the book was never in this position.

    Concidentally, that is the best argument possible against an economy based on central planning–which is where the sociopath is taking the country. No one in Washington DC can have nearly as much knowledge about the merits of the transaction than the willing buyer and the willing seller on the front line of the transaction. And, of course, the difference between what they know and what the central planner knows in the microcosm the difference between a good deal and a bad deal–or no deal for them, and in the macrocosm the difference between a health economy and a stagnant one.

  100. Belatedly, White House aide pays for renovation

    NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City politician now with the Obama administration is trying to defuse suggestions that he took favors from an architect who needed city approval for a development project.

    The Daily News reports that former Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion has finally paid the architect for a home renovation job completed in early 2007.

    A lawyer for architect Hugo Subotovsky says the check for about $4,200 arrived a few days ago.

    Prosecutors have been looking into why Carrion went nearly two years to pay for the work. City investigators also recently raided the offices of a development company in connection with the probe.
    Carrion says there isn’t anything unusual about the delay.

    Carrion recently became Obama’s urban affairs director.

    google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gx4-VdiEYFx44C2TwdmbZQLHUO4gD97PIQK03

  101. On a different front there has been a surge in bombings and deaths in Iran as the withdrawal date of June 30 approaches.

  102. More White House appointments

    04/24/2009

    The White House announced several anticipated appointments in the past day on the foreign policy front. Among then, Obama has at long last officially announced his intent to nominate Kurt Campbell as assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, replacing Chris Hill, who has arrived in Baghdad three days after being confirmed as the new U.S. ambassador to Iraq.

    Other intents-to-nominates Obama has announced: the Brookings Institution’s Daniel Benjamin, a former Clinton-era NSC director for transnational threats, to be his nominee for the State Department’s coordinator for counterterrorism, with the rank and status of ambassador at large; career Foreign Service officer and current U.S. ambassador to Sri Lanka Robert O. Blake, to be assistant secretary of state for South Asian affairs; the Connect U.S. Fund’s Eric Schwartz, a former Clinton-era NSC official, to be assistant secretary of state for populations, refugee and migration; and Philip Mudd, a former CIA analyst, CTC and FBI official, to be under secretary for intelligence and analysis at the Department of Homeland Security.

    thecable.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2009/04/24/more_white_house_appointments

  103. wbboei Says:
    April 25th, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    turndown: it is the subplot of every war movie of the 1950s–what they have to do to complete the mission is to go beyond the book because the guy who wrote the book was never in this position.

    ================

    Captain Kirk too. Suppose the torture is wearing a hair shirt. The hero inflicts that, gets the information, delivers it to headquarters — wearing the same hair shirt the whole way.

  104. Someday I will learn the difference between Iran and Iraq and when I do I will never confuse them in what I post here. The above comment relates to Iraq, not Iran. Let us hope it is a mistake and not self fulfilling prophesy.

  105. gonzotx Says:
    April 25th, 2009 at 4:17 pm

    S Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 1:08 pm
    great clip of our Hillary putting the condescending males in their place…
    *******************************************

    It really was the perfect answer. She knew it was coming

    ============================

    She probably wrote it at the same time she wrote her acceptance speech about Sanger. Bravo Hillary!

  106. Mark Davis: So what did we learn from tea parties?

    April 24, 2009

    It’s been 11 days. Are your tea party passions still bubbling? For attendees and other supporters, it’s a question of whether the uplifting fervor on April 15 for restraining government growth, spending and taxation was a flash in the pan or the birth of a new movement.

    For some detractors, it’s a question of whether the sheer viciousness has toned down to the dull roar of mere condescension. For all the attention paid to the words and motives of those who planned the agendas and filled the venues, the behavioral portrait that begs to be analyzed is the torrent of unhinged tantrums thrown by those repulsed by the exercise.

    Disagreeing with tea party politics is fine. I would expect a massive pro-life event to be met with pro-choice responses or a global warming rally to be answered with constructive skepticism. But from White House officials to actors with time on their hands, it was not enough to simply disagree with the tea party cornerstone of lower taxes and spending. The Americans attending these events had to be eviscerated as mobs of evil, violent psychopaths.

    Please YouTube the MSNBC diatribe from Janeane Garofalo, who manages to cash a paycheck in the current season of 24, a television series that surely offends her by painting a favorable image of fighting terror. Maybe the pain of enduring such an environment fueled her attack on the generally conservative tea party crowds. “It’s about hating a black man in the White House,” she spewed, oblivious to the absence of that theme from the vast majority of the nearly 800 events. But why let facts obstruct a good smear? “It is a neurological problem we are dealing with,” she continued, falling back on the most dog-eared index card in the radical left’s file: demonize your opponents so you don’t have to address what they actually say.

    Or there’s always ignoring the opposition, the White House’s initial strategy. President Barack Obama, we were told that day, was “unaware” of the tea party protests. I know presidents exist in “The Bubble,” where they might not know who Susan Boyle is or how the NBA playoffs are going, but the notion that this smartest-ever, most-plugged-in president was “unaware” of the day’s opposition to his agenda is simply an insult.

    But that’s par for the course for an administration that really doesn’t want to be bothered with pesky Americans not willing to straighten up and fly right – directly into a stratosphere of debt. “Disaffection” over such things is “unhealthy,” according to Obama adviser David Axelrod, who told CBS’ Face the Nation that he was “bewildered” by the annoying din of dissent as the administration tries to make people believe it is a tax-cutting machine.

    Except that millions of citizens are onto the scam. There are indeed tax cuts in the works, mostly among those whose taxes are relatively meager, with the goal of creating a majority of Americans who pay virtually no taxes and thus have no stake in tax policy. How better to pillage the ranks of upper-income folks who actually create the jobs most of the non-taxpayers use to feed their families?

    I’d better wrap this up. My tone already resembles the Unabomber manifesto to the current Department of Homeland Security, which didn’t mind maligning millions of citizens as the tea parties drew near, slandering several “single-issue” passions – immigration and abortion, as well as taxes and spending – as breeding grounds for burgeoning domestic terrorism.

    It is still impossible to know whether the voices and energies of Tea Party Day will still be around for the election days of 2010 and 2012. But let Hollywood and the White House keep talking. Their clumsy scorn may do more to keep that spirit alive than a thousand columns from me.

    dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/opinion/viewpoints/stories/DN-markdavis_0426edi.State.Edition1.1e4b2c5.html

  107. It seems to me at least that rice and power are being marginalized. Rice because her demeanor and knowlege is such that she does not command respect from credible world leaders, but is more of interest to third world countries looking for a handout. Power because she is a second rate scholar, with deep bias and her political skills are not great. The one who his emerging as the powerhouse is Holbrook. But he also has a very tough job which will require all his skills. These new announcements are secondary or tertiary bureaucrats.

  108. That is a great video of Hillary putting that bureaucratic oaf down. The only difference between that senator(and ones just like him) and the Taliban is a turban. They are all interested in keeping women beneath them. The whole right wing nuts are about this. They claim its biblical. That’s exactly what the Taliban say too!

    Good for Hillary, she put him in his place with a smile!

  109. US Secretary of State Makes Unannounced Visit to Iraq

    By Edward Yeranian
    Cairo
    25 April 2009

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, making her first visit to Iraq as America’s top diplomatic officer, has been meeting with U.S. military commanders, as well as top Iraqi leaders, to assess the situation.
    The visit by Secretary of State Clinton to Iraq comes on the heels of a wave of bloody suicide-bombings which threaten to destabilize the country, just weeks before U.S. troops are set to withdraw from major Iraqi cities.

    Clinton told a press conference with her Iraqi counterpart, Hoshyar Zebari, that her assessment of the situation in Iraq mirrored that of top U.S. commander General Ray Odierno. “These are tragic and terrible events, but they don’t reflect any diversion from the security progress that has been made. They are certainly regrettable and horrible in terms of loss of life, but the reaction from the Iraqi people and the Iraqi leaders was firm and united in rejecting that violence and refusing to allow it to set Iraqi against Iraqi, which is obviously one of its intended goals,” she said.

    Two suicide-bombings, Thursday, followed by two more suicide-bombings, Friday, left scores of dead and wounded. The victims were mostly Shi’ite muslims, in what appears to be a bid to set off further sectarian warfare.

    Clinton noted that despite the loss of life from the “lethal and terrible” suicide-bombings, the Iraqi people have made courageous sacrifices, alongside the United States, to withstand the challenges facing them. “The Iraqi people have withstood challenges of the most vicious and violent sort from those who would have torn their society apart, and Iraqis from everywhere have made tremendous sacrifices. The United States has also shared in those sacrifices, but we are proud of the progress that the Iraqi people have made….The Iraqi people are known for intelligence, hard-work and courage, and we will stand with you,” she said.

    Foreign Minister Zebari insisted that he doesn’t think that the recent surge of violence will disrupt the timetable for U.S. troops to withdraw from major Iraqi cities in June, or for assuming security responsibilities across the country. “I personally don’t believe that these deadly attacks will derail the government determination to pursue its plan to stabilize the country. Yes, we have indeed a certain timetable for (U.S.) withdrawal from the population centers, from the city-centers, but we are doing our utmost and we are coordinating very closely with the multinational forces to ensure there is no vacuum,” he said.

    Clinton also expressed her pleasure at having met ordinary Iraqis, including women and war widows. She told them the Obama Administration will stand by them in their travails. “I especially appreciated the chance to meet with Iraqis, including a group of Iraqi women, who were both war widows and helping widows and their children, and I also participated in a historic town meeting with Iraqi citizens representing a broad cross-section of Iraqi society. At each stop, I have emphasized president Obama’s message that our strategy working with you may be in a new phase, but we pledge our full and continuing commitment to Iraq and the Iraqi people. We are committed to seeing an Iraq that is sovereign, stable and self-reliant, and fully integrated in the region,” she said.
    Clinton was met at the Baghdad airport Saturday by the new U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Christopher Hill.

    voanews.com/english/2009-04-25-voa6.cfm

  110. wbboei, whats your take on the surge in bombings in Bagdad as our war committment is winding down??

    My guess there is some people in the business of war making money and they don’t want to give up the cash cow, they could be working covertly to keep the fires burning over there! (CHENEY)

  111. Hamas sees new unity talks as most difficult yet

    GAZA CITY (AFP) — The new round of Palestinian reconciliation talks due to start in Cairo on Sunday is likely to be “the most difficult,” a spokesman for the Islamist movement Hamas said on Saturday. “This session will be the most difficult taking account of the inflexibility” witnessed in earlier rounds that blocked progress in the dialogue, Fawzi Barhum told AFP. He said the new session of the Egypt-brokered talks is likely to open with a meeting between representatives of Hamas and from the secular Fatah movement of Palestinian Authority president Mahmud Abbas.

    The two sides have struggled to make any progress in the negotiations which began in Cairo on March 10, aimed in particular at forming a unified Palestinian government. A major stumbling block is the policy positions of a unity government.
    Hamas, which wants to replace Israel with an Islamic Palestinian state, says it will not commit to existing agreements between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

    The Middle East Quartet — Russia, the United States, United Nations and European Union — has made dealing with Hamas conditional on it recognising Israel and backing past Palestinian-Israeli accords.

    Discussions were suspended on April 2 for three weeks and the Egyptian government later proposed adjourning efforts to form a joint government and instead setting up a committee to coordinate two rival cabinets.

    An agreement is vital for the reconstruction of Hamas-ruled Gaza devastated by an Israeli offensive from December to January. The international community has refused to channel reconstruction aid via the Islamist movement, although it won a Palestinian general election in 2006 and has controlled Gaza since seizing unshared power in June 2007.

    International donors have pledged 4.5 billion dollars for the rebuilding of Gaza, home to 1.5 million people, and the revival of the Palestinian economy. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Thursday expressed doubt that the rival Palestinian factions will clinch a deal on a unity government, but wanted to keep options open if they do. The chief US diplomat promised that Washington would not deal with any unity government that failed to meet international principles for peace such as halting violence against Israel and recognizing Israel’s right to exist. “If the government complies with it, that is what we’re looking for,” Clinton said.

    US President Barack Obama has made clear to Israel he believes that the path to peace lies in already agreed frameworks as provided in the stalled roadmap plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace. However, the new right-wing government elected in Israel is opposed to an independent Palestinian state.

    google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gdBWYB9XuXQj1Ez4hfXTMDiaxrhQ

  112. whats your take on the surge in bombings in Bagdad as our war committment is winding down??
    ———————————–
    confloyd: I think the radicals perceive Bambi as weak. They are showing the world that the United States is a paper tiger as long as he is the head of state. The bottom line is they see an opportunity now to consolidate their power and strengthen their position. Terror coupled with the commencement of withdrawal strenthens their hand. That is how I read it. And that is how I would read it as well if I were in their position.

  113. wbboei, your of coarse right, but I often think if there were not a military machine/business, there would be no world wars. Of coarse man has been killing one another with their mere hands since Cane and Abel.

    Also have you seen the pic that is to be unveiled at union station in New York on Apr 29th to commemorate Obama’s first 100 days?? It is shown over at TexasDarlin’s blogspot. Its really something!

  114. Off topic, sorta, however, usually I do not watch the blubbering Glen Beck. Recently, I’ve seen his show a few times and every time he manages to paint Hillary and/or Bill in a bad light. I don’t know much about him. What’s his problem?

    Glen Beck is an @ss…just needed to say that.

  115. southern born, Its best not to watch that idiot, he was the one that stated “It Cries”, referring to Hillary’s teary eye in New Hampshire. He is an Ass.

    He is also a recovering alcoholic, maybe he had mamma problems growing up, like some of the others that are constantly on Hillary’s butt, whatever they are I wish they would find a new profession!

  116. Thanks for the advice, Confloyd. I’ve watch my last of poor little Glen.

    Tonight there was not much on, so I watched Beck. If he were to be believed, you’d think that the WORST thing any president in the history of this country has ever done is lie about having sex with that woman and that even as we speak, Hillary is down in Memphis coordinating the Planned Parenthood program and going door to door to convince 14 year olds to have abortions.

    Seems to me that the blubbering Glen and his cohorts are scared silly of Bill and Hillary. They are so afraid that if they don’t continually put them down, the Clintons will do the phoenix thing and rise again and after the goofball presdients we’ve had for the past 8 years and presently, people might wake up and want experience and intelligence in the next president.

    What pitful scared little Mamma’s boys these guys are. I’m sick of it!

  117. SouthernBorn, It really makes me mad that of late all of the blogs I read are acting like Glenn Beck is their new voice. I can’t believe how short of memory people are! These men have done nothing for the past 16+years but demonize Hillary. They are so scared of the Clinton’s committment to the common man that they have someway or somehow keep knocking them. All of the sudden now the rethugs are the answer, NO their are NOT. THey got us in this mess and with the help of dims they have managed to screw the common man more than should be possible.
    I find this political ping pong match so irritating. Both parties are corrupt and should be thrown out!

  118. turndownobama-com Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 5:21 pm
    ***********************************

    It is a necessary evil, plain and simple. I don’t recall B Clinton saying the CIA/FBI/ ARMED forces should turn around and inflict the same torture upon themselves, or Admin. I may be wrong, wouldn’t be the first time, but then I don’t like to speak for anyone besides myself.
    We will always disagree on this matter so I will consider it the end of this discussion.

  119. Yes, indeed, Confloyd.

    You know, right off the bat, we know something is seriously wrong when we former life long Democrats are watching Fox News with the creepy Bill O, loud mouth Sean, blubbering little Glen because they are fairer even with their constant attacks on the Clintons than the BO loving Keith O, Chrissie M. , Rachel, Wolf, Campbell and company who are supposedly liberal Dem supporters.

    I, too, have a long memory of what the above creeps screamed and did to the Clintons for the past 16 years. And sometimes I feel guilty that I even stoop to watching FOX but I refuse to ever tune in to MSNBC, NBC, or CNN any more.

  120. Photos Show Nazi Crimes Against US GIsBy WAYNE DRASH, CNN
    posted: 2 HOURS 23 MINUTES
    The photograph is a jarring image that shows Nazi Party members, shovels in hand, digging up graves of American soldiers held as slaves by Nazi Germany during World War II.
    While the men dig up the site, U.S. soldiers investigating war crimes stand over them. Two crosses with helmets placed atop them — the sign of a fallen soldier — are visible. Two Germans are knee deep in mud. Another, with a handlebar mustache, has the look of a defeated man. The bodies of 22 American soldiers were found in at least seven graves, according to the photographer.

    Remembering Berga United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, gift of the Martin family7 photos In this photograph, Nazi Party members dig up a massive grave containing the remains of American soldiers held as slaves during World War II. This previously unknown photo, taken by Elmore “Bud” Martin, was recently donated by Martin’s family to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. )

    On the back of the photo is written, “Nazi Party members digging up American bodies at Berga.”
    Berga an der Elster was a slave labor camp where 350 U.S. soldiers were beaten, starved, and forced to work in tunnels for the German government. The soldiers were singled out for “looking like Jews” or “sounding like Jews,” or dubbed as undesirables, according to survivors. More than 100 soldiers perished at the camp or on a forced death march.
    It was on this day six decades ago, April 23, 1945, when most of the slave labor camp soldiers were liberated by advancing U.S. troops. The emaciated soldiers, many weighing just 80 pounds, had been forced by Nazi commanders to march more than 150 miles before their rescue.
    Skip over this content The new photograph was likely taken in May or June 1945 when U.S. war crimes investigators combed Berga. It was donated earlier this month to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum by Jim Martin and his family, whose father, Elmore “Bud” Martin, is believed to have snapped the picture as part of the war crimes investigation team.
    The photo and dozens of others sat for years in Jim Martin’s closet. Some of the photos, including graphic images of American corpses, were placed on record at the National Archives years ago.
    But the image of Nazi Party members digging up graves doesn’t appear to be part of that collection. Martin said he was proud to hand over the photos.
    “People have to see these. This is something that’s history and it belongs with something that’s historical to tell that story. It doesn’t belong in my closet.”
    “To be honest, I’m kind of sorry I haven’t done it sooner. We didn’t realize what it was.”

    Holocaust Heroes Franka Bruns, AP7 photos A new memorial honors unsung German heroes who helped Jews escape Nazi persecution during World War II — like a woman who slipped food to a friend in hiding, and a family who took in several people fleeing persecution. The Silent Heroes Memorial Center opened Oct. 27 in Berlin.

    Elmore Martin, who won a Silver Star for his valor in capturing images during the war, was 28 when he shot the photographs. Before the war, he worked as a photographer for the St. Paul Dispatch and Pioneer Press. Martin’s son said his dad, who died several years ago, struggled to keep a job when he returned home. “I now see where it all started,” he said.
    What Elmore Martin and the war crimes soldiers seen in the photo couldn’t have known that day was how the case would evolve.
    The two Berga commanders — Erwin Metz and his superior, Hauptmann Ludwig Merz — were tried for war crimes and initially sentenced to die by hanging. But the U.S. government commuted their death sentences in 1948, and both men were eventually released in the 1950s. One other Berga commander, Lt. Willy Hack, was executed, but not by the United States. He died by hanging, justice carried out by the Soviets.
    Jim Martin said his father would have been upset at the freeing of the Berga commanders after the atrocities he documented. “He knew it happened and to see that these people were released would be pretty devastating.”

    Efraim Zuroff, who has spent nearly 30 years hunting Nazis responsible for the Holocaust, said the U.S. government commuted the sentences and freed hundreds of war criminals like those at Berga after the war, as the Cold War began to intensify.
    “They were more concerned about keeping out Communists than admitting victims of the Nazis,” he said. “The realities out there were very conducive of letting these people off the hook.”
    How should Americans feel six decades later that the government freed the Nazi commanders responsible for atrocities against U.S. soldiers?
    “We’re supposed to feel very pissed off about that, to be perfectly honest, and that feeling is very justified,” Zuroff said.
    The German government has since made reparations to the soldiers held at Berga. Zuroff said now it’s time for the U.S. government to do “the right thing.”

    “To apologize,” he said.
    *************************************************

    Nothing much has changed. Today we are releasing Terrorists into America and deaths and abuses of thousands of Americans by these people, does it matter to our Gov? Not so much.

    Those who refuse to learn from History are destined to repeat it.

    D-Day RehearsalsTony Koorlander15 photos Photos from secret footage released in February show U.S. troops in England rehearsing for the World War II D-Day invasion that would take place in France on June 6, 1944.(Note: Please disable your pop-up blocker)

    The Army said it is trying to figure out the best way to honor the Berga soldiers. There are about 20 known survivors still living.
    “The U.S. Army honors the service and sacrifice of all veterans who have fought our nation’s wars. The Army is working to identify the most dignified and personal way to honor the soldiers held at the Nazi slave camp, known as Berga,” Army spokesman Lt. Col. Willie Harris said in a written statement.
    The Army refused to answer further questions about the Berga case.
    Survivors have long wanted to know why the sentences of the commanders were commuted. In a letter dated June 11, 1948, to an attorney whose nephew died at Berga, the U.S. War Department said the sentences of Metz and Merz were commuted because they were “underlings.”
    The letter goes on to say that Metz “though guilty of a generally cruel course of conduct toward prisoners was not directly responsible for the death of any prisoners, except one who was killed during the course of an attempt to escape.” That soldier was Morton Goldstein

    More StoriesSurvivors say Goldstein tried to escape but was captured. They say Metz stood him against a wall, walked up to him and shot him, execution-style, through the head. As his body lay on the ground, guards riddled him with bullets, according to survivors.
    The soldiers who survived were not called to testify at the war crimes trial against Metz and Merz, instead prosecutors relied on about a dozen soldiers’ statements gathered through the course of the investigation. At the trial, Metz blamed any deaths at the camp on U.S. medics.
    “They bore the sole responsibility for the medical care,” Metz told the court, according to the book “Given Up for Dead,” by Flint Whitlock, citing trial transcripts. “I ask you: Who must bear the responsibility? The answer is obvious: The U.S. medics.”
    Those comments don’t sit well with Berga survivors. “He was terrible, absolutely terrible. He lied,” said Tony Acevedo, a U.S. medic who catalogued the deaths in a diary at the camp. “Everybody hated his guts.”
    “Even the German guards were scared of him.”
    Berga survivors say they await any recognition from the Army that may come, especially after all these years.
    Morton Brooks, 83, said he constantly thinks about the day he was liberated. He was rail thin and had walked by political prisoners shot in the head during the forced death march. In the final hours before his rescue, his attitude was, “Let them kill us,” he said.
    “I think all the time that I’m a survivor of this and I’m still around,” said Brooks. “To me, it just amazes me. I don’t know how I got through.”
    Jim Martin said he’s still trying to process his father’s role as a forgotten American war hero, armed not with a gun, but a camera.
    “The worst part is I’m just finding it out,” he said.

  121. Southern Born Says:

    April 25th, 2009 at 11:17 pm
    ************************************************

    I know, I think about it all the time. The only one I really like is Lou Dobbs. He’s a keeper.

    I wish Lady Rothschild or anyone with some pull or respect from the right could convince them to let go of the hatred for the Clintons. It is so irrational and it fringes on the bizzare and in fact hurts the Repub party because the millions of us that are middle in the roaders, live and let live types don’t want to be associated with the fringe crazy’s of either side. I do think most people are in the middle on most things

  122. Mexico’s Calderon Declares Emergency Amid Swine Flu Outbreak

    By Thomas Black

    April 25 (Bloomberg) — Mexican President Felipe Calderon declared an emergency in his country’s swine flu outbreak, giving him powers to order quarantines and suspend public events.

    Authorities have canceled school at all levels in Mexico City and the state of Mexico until further notice, and the government has shut most public and government activities in the area. The emergency decree, published today in the state gazette, gives the president authority to take more action.

    “The federal government under my charge will not hesitate a moment to take all, all the measures necessary to respond with efficiency and opportunity to this respiratory epidemic,” Calderon said today during a speech to inaugurate a hospital in the southern state of Oaxaca.

    At least 20 deaths in Mexico from the disease are confirmed, Health Minister Jose Cordova said yesterday. The strain is a variant of H1N1 swine influenza that has also sickened at least eight people in California and Texas. As many as 68 deaths may be attributed to the virus in Mexico, and about 1,000 people in the Mexico City area are showing symptoms of the illness, Cordoba said.

    Obama’s Visit

    The first case was seen in Mexico on April 13. The outbreak coincided with the President Barack Obama’s trip to Mexico City on April 16. Obama was received at Mexico’s anthropology museum in Mexico City by Felipe Solis, a distinguished archeologist who died the following day from symptoms similar to flu, Reforma newspaper reported. The newspaper didn’t confirm if Solis had swine flu or not.

    The Mexican government is distributing breathing masks to curtail the disease’s spread. There is no vaccine against the new strain of swine flu, health authorities said.

    Museums, theaters and other venues in the Mexico City area, where large crowds gather, have shut down voluntarily and concerts and other events canceled to help contain the disease. Two professional soccer games will be played tomorrow in different Mexico City stadiums without any fans, El Universal newspaper reported. Catholic masses will be held, the newspaper said, although church officials urged worshipers to wear breath masks and to avoid contact.

    Schools will likely remain closed next week, Calderon said in the Oaxaca speech. The decree allows Calderon to regulate transportation, enter any home or building for inspection, order quarantines and assign any task to all federal, state and local authorities as well as health professionals to combat the disease.

    “The health of Mexicans is a cause that we’re defending with unity and responsibility,” Calderon said. “I know that although it’s a grave problem, a serious problem, we’re going to overcome it.”

    Normal Airport Operations

    Mexico City’s international airport, which handles about 70,000 passengers each day, is operating normally, said Victor Mejia, a spokesman. Passengers are given a questionnaire asking if they have flu symptoms and recommending they cancel their trip and see a doctor if they do. The measures are voluntary, Mejia said, and no case of swine flu in airport passengers, workers or visitors has been confirmed.

    Authorities throughout Central America have issued alerts to prevent the outbreak from spreading. Guatemala ordered tighter control yesterday of its northern border with Mexico, according to EFE. Gerberth Morales, who’s heading the Guatemala government’s response, said no cases of swine flu have been reported in his country, the Spanish news agency reported.

    Brazil is intensifying vigilance in ports, airports and borders to check travelers’ health, luggage, aircrafts and ships in a preventive action against the outbreak in Mexico, the Agency for Sanitary Vigilance said on its Web site.
    **************************************

    THE FOLLOWING DAY…..

  123. Gonzotx, thanks for reminding me about Lou Dobbs. I DO watch him on CNN, but whip that station right off immediately when his show is over…can’t stand Campbell.

    You hit the nail right on the head, most of us do not want to be associated with the wacko’s to the far side of either party.

  124. gonzotx Says:
    April 25th, 2009 at 11:06 pm
    ==========================

    Sorry I was unclear whose ideas stopped where. Sfaik Bill Clinton just said in effect that there are times to break the rules. HillaryforTX had good detail wth the examle of running a red light, and iirc said there needed to be penalty, deterrent.

    The idea of the torturer undergoing the same treatment himself … was mine.

  125. ‘Special Report’ Panel on a Pelosi’s Knowledge of CIA tactics
    Friday, April 24, 2009

    (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

    NANCY PELOSI, (D-CA) HOUSE SPEAKER: We were not, I repeat, not told that waterboarding or any of these other enhanced interrogation methods were used.

    (END VIDEO CLIP)

    BAIER: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi today answering a number of questions about what she was told as the ranking member of the Intelligence Committee in the House about enhanced interrogation techniques.

    Here’s what “The Wall Street Journal” editorial said today: “The speaker now says she remembers hearing about waterboarding, though not that it would actually be used. Does anyone believe that? Porter Goss, her GOP counterpart at the time, says he knew exactly what he was hearing, and that, if anything, Ms. Pelosi worried the CIA wasn’t doing enough to stop another attack. By all means, put her under oath.”

    Speaking of Porter Goss, at the time he was chairman of that House committee, he went on to become CIA director. He said in 2007 in an interview with “The Washington Post,” there was pretty full understanding of what the CIA was doing, and the reaction in the room was, “not just approval, but encouragement.”

    So what about this, the next step in these back and forths between the White House and Capitol Hill? Let’s bring in our panel — Jeff Birnbaum, managing editor digital of “The Washington Times,” Nina Easton, Washington Bureau Chief of “Fortune” magazine, and syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer — Jeff?

    JEFF BIRNBAUM, MANAGING EDITOR DIGITAL, “THE WASHINGTON TIMES”: Well, I have to say that the more than 30 meetings in — earlier this decade about these techniques that were attended by the top Democrats and Republicans and top staffers and intelligence committees, there is no question that a lot of people on Capitol Hill knew about these techniques, and that they tacitly, if not overtly, approved of them.

    BAIER: Which Nancy Pelosi, we’re told this afternoon at the White House in that meeting with the president, said she wants a truth commission.

    BIRNBAUM: Right.

    BAIER: The president and the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid apparently said they don’t, but she pursued, according to Major Garrett’s reporting.

    BIRNBAUM: If there is a truth commission, the truth is going to come back to bite the leaders of Congress and will clearly undercut any effort to try to prosecute any of the writers of these so-called “torture memos.”

    There is no question that lawmakers are complicit in what Democrats on Capitol Hill are now complaining about is torture.

    BAIER: Nina?

    NINA EASTON, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, “FORTUNE” MAGAZINE: I think Nancy Pelosi is clearly leading the left on this. She wants a truth commission. The Moveon.org, ACLU people want a special prosecutor. They just delivered petitions to Attorney General Holder demanding that.

    As you’re starting to see the pressure that this president was under leading up to releasing these memos.

    BAIER: From the left.

    EASTON: From the left, I should say.

    But where do you stop? If you’re going to start prosecuting and investigating, where do you stop? Do you go up to Condi Rice, who we now knew about this stuff in 2002?

    Do you go to George Tenet, then the CIA director, who, by the way, has said that we learned more through these techniques than — about dangerous terrorist attacks than we did from the NSA, other CIA programs, and the FBI combined, OK? He said that in 2007.

    And do we then, as Jeffry suggested, do we start looking at what was the complicity of Nancy Pelosi, whose story keeps changing, and other Democrats on the Hill?

    I think the president — you know, Mort Kondracke last night was saying we should have a 9/11-style commission, and I disagreed with him then. I have come around. I think we should have that, because the president is in danger of losing control of this to the left and to Nancy Pelosi.

    And he needs to not have a Nancy Pelosi truth commission, but a commission that he has control of. You have to put this energy in a box somewhere, and a special prosecutor is not the way to go.

    BAIER: Charles?

    CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Before you can decide whether to have a prosecutor or a commission, you have to know who the players. The Democrats want to make this a war on the Bush administration.

    But there is one inconvenient fact, and it’s stated by none other than Dennis Blair, who’s the Director of National Intelligence under Obama, not under Bush. And he said in writing that the leadership of the CIA repeatedly reported their activities to the executive and to members of congress, and received permission to continue to use the techniques.

    Now, he’s a man who’s completely disinterested in this. He does not have a stake in the fight, and that’s what he says.

    So among these Democrats, of course, among these members of Congress who are Democrats, we saw in that clip Nancy Pelosi saying that we were not told that these techniques were used in the past, past tense.

    But what she said in December ’07 in a statement in response to a “Washington Post” story which said that she had been in on the hearings and had not objected, had been in on the briefings and not objected, she issued a statement saying that she was briefed on interrogation techniques the administration was considering using in the future.

    So the parsing here is positively Clintonian. But even so, it doesn’t help her, because if you’re in a briefing, and you’re a member of Congress, and you’re hearing about a technique that you now say you were scandalized and is a war crime and you opposed, what is more important to speak out about? A technique that has been used in the past, in which case the briefing is pointless, or speaking about a technique which is going to be used in the future, in which case your objection is essential, but it never happened either. It never happened, and she never objected.

    So I agree with “The Wall Street Journal.” If you want to have a commission, start with her. Put her in the dock under oath. Ask what did you know? When did you know it? And if it’s a war crime, how could you possibly not have objected?

    BAIER: And quickly, Jeff. This White House doesn’t want to be here now, does it?

    BIRNBAUM: I think it does to a very small degree. The notion of keeping open the possibility of prosecuting the lawyers who wrote the memos, I think they’re not going to prosecute them, but they want to keep that open in order to appease the left that, as Nina points out, is putting so much pressure. It’s just a rhetorical flourish.

  126. Re. Pelosi

    Oh what tangled webs we weave
    When first we practice to deceive

    Question: was she sober during the original briefing? Was she sober when she said she was never briefed? Was she sober when she said she may have been briefed? Or was she sober on NONE of these occasion? Or is she ever sober? Is that why she carries that flask of Old Crow corn whiskey in her purse? And I thought it was medical.

  127. Nancy Pelosi is the star of this little vignette. Soros and Barack appear together in the beginning and the end. Stennie Hoyer and Waxman are part of the chorus. George Miller is there as well. Harry Reid came down with swine flu and absent. Yes the whole gang is there.

  128. Can anyone tell me why Hillary was being grilled on this video?? Was there somewhat of a commission or something?? It looks like they were trying to catch her in something, much like the rethugs did in the 90’s. I guess they are worried she will run again, huh??

  129. Unreal
    First I confess that I listen to Susan Boyle two or three times/day. Yesterday someone posted a comment linking her with icky icky poh pooh and I responded to the statement with a comment that she earned her place in history and he stole his and a request to not diminish her talents by comparing her to waffles. An hour later I checked my mail and I had 178 messages from people atacking me for my statement. The scariest part is that the place I made my comment has all posts disapear after two minutes. So how was my comment read by more than one person. Do it yourself go to the Susan Boyle youtube video with 45 million hits and say something anti-bambi. No way my comment was read in real time, but the number of responses tells me he has an internet army which is unbelievable!

  130. Can anyone tell me why Hillary was being grilled on this video?? Was there somewhat of a commission or something?? It looks like they were trying to catch her in something, much like the rethugs did in the 90’s. I guess they are worried she will run again, huh??
    ——————————————————
    Confloyd: in reading the background of the people who were “grilling” her over the last couple days they have two things in common. First, they are Republicans. Second, they are religious conservatives who support right to life.

    What they were trying to do was draw a correlation between Hillary’s alleged failure to confront China on forced abortions and her alleged support for Sanger who favored similar policies. The goal was to demonize her and to play to their constituencies. This being the House as opposed to the Senate, they do care what their constituents think.

    Overnight Hillary figured out what their game was and took a much smarter approach on the second day that preempted what they were trying to do. It was to have been a one two punch, but it really did not come off for that reason.

  131. If I were a betting man, I would say Poopsie is in a full panic mode. She wants an independent investigation? What she really means is she wants the issue buried. I will bet you she does not want the findings of that investigation released to the public. I will also bet you that she wants to hand pick the investigator and edit the report in much the same way as the White House edited the memorandum written by Admiral Dennis Blair, the Director of National Intelligence. This is not disclosure–it is damage control.

  132. Gotta say I think Nancy Perlosi has a lot in common with stinky feet. She reeks and no matter how she attempts to mask it, She stinks. The only treatment that works for stinky feet is to submerege th offending matter in bleach and then burn everything yhey have ever worn. Otherwise the bacteria worn in the past just grows again. Pelosi is stinky .

  133. Well, I have to say that the more than 30 meetings in — earlier this decade about these techniques that were attended by the top Democrats and Republicans and top staffers and intelligence committees, there is no question that a lot of people on Capitol Hill knew about these techniques, and that they tacitly, if not overtly, approved of them.
    —————————————————-
    And what do you suppose the reaction all those top Democrats and staffers reaction is to MY BARACK OBAMA on again off again support for an independent prosecutor? His attempt to politicize the issue at their expense, indifferent to their interests or in ignorance of their interests?

    Are they saying to themselves we are so lucky to have a Messiah, we must serve him without objection and if he moves in mysterious ways that we cannot understand ways that destroy us it is a small price to pay for the political party we love whose future is more important to us than our own future, our family’s future, countrys future and all the other bourgise preoccupations that once guided our insignificant lives?

    Or are they holding secret meetings with those they have known and trusted for years and saying I wish I had never taken this job, what is wrong with this White House, what is the matter with this sociopath we call our leader, I am not going to hang for this literally (SHV’s excellent point about the troublesome statute–although I do think they would invoke sovereign immunity to shield themselves from prosecution, the moral stigma would be gruesome) or figuratively, why didnt we see this coming. And if we proceed against Cheney who has been in this town for forty years, is tight with some very scarey people who make Axelrods Chicago crew look like choir boys, and has an instinct for the jugglar second to none, then wtf.

    This young pup of ours just crossed the line without knowing it and we are all in trouble. The always myopic hard left will see this as a second bite at the apple in their pathological obsession with getting Bush. This is like the sequel to the earlier movie to impeach Bush. We kept that genie in the bottle for precisely that reason and OUR MASTER in his consumate eager to please egomania has turned it loose. The political pressure is building. We attack Bush, we are shown to be in pare delicto and then all the dirty laundry comes out. I dont care about party. I dont care about country. All I care about is me.

    If they are not talking that way over this one I would be surprised.

  134. I just got off work this a.m. and was driving home. I saw this new Cadillac Eldorado Convertible pass me with an unusual sign in the back window. I work in The Woodlands a very expensive area north of Houston.
    The sign in the back window stated “Now they want to persecute and prosecute our U.S. patriots that kept us safe” “This is insanity”, well, I wish I could feel sorry for the right wingers that stayed home or crossed over to defeat Hillary at the beguest of Rush Limbaugh and the Rethug party, unfortunately I don’t, they are to blame for the state this United States is in right now.
    We all tried to tell them, we blogged, we picketted, we called phone banks, we gave our hard earned money to Hillary, we prayed, but to no avail, they did not listen. Sorry, it sucks when you don’t vote or vote only on morale issues. Now we are all going to go down with the ship!

  135. Confloyd: you can pin that one on Rove and other Republicans but definitely not Rush. During the primary he was telling his listening audience to vote for Hillary, while the idiots in that party were conspiring with that excremental buffoon Brazille. For one brief shining moment in his life, Rush was on the side of the angels. As I recall, it was called Operation Chaos, and I found out about it when I was knocking on doors in Indiana and conservatives I met talked about it.

  136. wbboei, yes you are right, but Rush in the beginning was dissing Hillary. When he suddenly realized that Obama had backing he wanted everyone to vote for Hillary!

  137. The Country Club Republicans are ignorant as swans when it comes to this. They do not understand the nature of the enemy. And they have no sense of urgency. They are like the British aristocrats who went to the battlefied in World War II armed with steamer trunks filled with personal luxuries and a well stocked bar. They are not up for it.

    Far worse however are the perverse fools who drive around in Mercedes and BMWs with Obama 08 bumper stickers. I see a number of them in this part of the country. They are what we used to call limosene liberals. I number them among the floridly delusional for whom this is a fashion statement as opposed to a serious assault on our country. Even now they are deluded–its pride, the never failing vice of fools.

  138. wbboei, yes you are right, but Rush in the beginning was dissing Hillary. When he suddenly realized that Obama had backing he wanted everyone to vote for Hillary!
    ————————-
    Correct/

  139. wbboei, What do you think that the chances are that the Rethugs did not go after Obama birth certificate or dual citizenship is because they want to put Jingle in next?? I think this is the reason, its really kinda funny, lets just say is there honor among theives??? LOL!!
    If there really is honor among theives then by rights we should go after Bush after Clinton’s impeachment.

    This reminds me of my tenure as an xray tech for the texas prison system. There is an unwritten law in prison, child molesters are not tolerated by murderers, theives, and mafioso’s, they usually get killed or wish they would die before having to go thru what is in store for them in prison.

    This reminds me of the theives that run our government. They can steal the american taxpayer blind, commit all kinds of fraud, but the better not be for abortion, that is tantamount to the child molester in the prison population! The world is so screwed up!

  140. A question for those who let Bush hatred blind them to the transgressions of this clown:

    Question: is your hatred of Bush so obsessive that you cannot see where Bambi is taking this country, and where it will leave people like you? Wake up!

  141. wbboei, What do you think that the chances are that the Rethugs did not go after Obama birth certificate or dual citizenship is because they want to put Jingle in next??
    ——————————————–
    Confloyd: I lost interest in the bc issue myself when SHV pointed out something I did not know before. Apparently, there was a contemporaneous announcement by the hospital to the press in Hawaii announcing his birth. If that is the case, then there is no point pursuing it. I asked SHV why if that was the case he did not release it and put the matter to rest. The answer that came back was a good one: he is a sociopath. A further reason would be to distract his opponents, and let them pursue it so he can call them names. I lost much of my interest at that point. I put together what I thought at the time was a strong case for the proposition that he was not born in this country, and got it to the national media which was interested but did nothing with it. I think that was why. I talked to Brian Ross at ABC news whom I respect.

  142. This reminds me of the theives that run our government. They can steal the american taxpayer blind, commit all kinds of fraud, but the better not be for abortion, that is tantamount to the child molester in the prison population!
    ————————–
    If this thing falls apart on Mr. Obamas watch, then lord help him. The public reaction to him will not be pretty. We are beyond the point where he can credibly blame Bush. He knew what the situation was before he became he was selected and still he promised us peace and prosperity. In doing so, he assumed the risk and blaming Bush becomes a hollow mockery on his claim to leadership. It is not a continuing defense to a failure to deliver positive results. The comment I cited by Al Gore last week calls the game on him in a curious way. The situation is serious and we cannot spend our way out of it. That is his Achilles heal–the idea that his policies will be shown to have made matters worse. And if at the same time we are treated to a meltdown over the way he handled the torture memos, and he fails spectacularly on the foreign affairs front–guess what. There are times when it is good to be the minority party. They will try to distract. Our job will be to keep a lazer focus on the facts.

  143. Hi all

    I have to tell you i am smiling inside. Most AA’s i talk to now are not so sure of O. They were looking for a check. Not the extra money they are getting in their pay checks. Most said they don’t see the difference in their pay check.

    Some are trying to make excuses for him. I tell them, it is ok to make excuses for him, when it came to Bush no excuses? They said at least Bush gave them a check.

    Most could care less what is going on in the world. It is all about the money.

  144. The argument that works best with so called progressives is he is Bush III. The argument that works best with middle class is he is a tool of corporate interests. The argument that works best with Republicans is he is a socialist. All three propositions are true.

  145. The other thing we have to keep an eye on is his move to control what Marx called “the means of production”. His administration is taking money from the public and insisting that major banks accept it whether the want it or not. Why? Because part of the socialistic plan is to acquire control of the means of production. When you combine that with control over the money supply through this supposedly neutral Fed which he has now subordinated to the collective will of g-20 bankers, you see where all this is heading: control of the economy. And if you can control the economy you can take over the society without firing one shot. For me, that move at g-20 which was done without the knowledge and consent of the governed or the stakeholders is the tip off. This was unquestionably pursuant to a larger plan. How could it be otherwise?

  146. Clinton on surprise visit to Lebanon

    BEIRUT (AFP) — US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Sunday made an unannounced visit to Lebanon where she was to meet with President Michel Sleiman. The visit was widely publicised on Lebanese television.

    Clinton’s visit, her first to Lebanon since taking office, comes as the tiny Mediterranean country prepares for June legislative elections that could see the militant group Hezbollah emerge victorious.

    Washington is a staunch backer of the national unity government in Lebanon, which is led by a Western-backed prime minister, and has expressed concern at the possibility of Hezbollah and its allies, which are supported by Syria and Iran, winning the June 7 vote.

    google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5grnp0Oqdz0dSaqTSIS1smlDFiqVg

  147. Iran’s Khamenei accuses US, Israel over Iraq bombings

    TEHRAN (AFP) — Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei blamed Israel and the United States on Saturday for persistent violence in Iraq after two suicide attacks left scores of Iranian pilgrims dead. “The American and Israeli intelligence apparatuses are the number-one accused… for the spread of the poisonous seeds of terrorism in Iraq,” Khamenei said in a message of condolence to the victims’ families broadcast on state television.

    “Those evil brains and sinful hands that established this blind, unbridled terrorism in Iraq should know that this fire will end up burning them,” the Iranian leader added. Twenty Iranian pilgrims were among at least 65 people killed when two women suicide bombers attacked a Shiite shrine in Baghdad on Friday. Some 80 Iranians were among the 120 people wounded. Another 52 Iranian pilgrims were among at least 56 people killed in a suicide attack on a roadside restaurant in Muqdadiyah, northeast of Baghdad, the previous day.

    US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called Khamenei’s remarks “disappointing” and blamed the attacks on “Al-Qaeda remnants and other violent groups who wish to disrupt the progress of Iraq.” “The United States and Iraq are partners in that progress and we are going to continue to be partners,” she told reporters in Baghdad. “And we hope that all of Iraq’s neighbours will assist Iraq in achieving its goals.”

    Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, speaking at the same press conference, also rejected the accusations. “According to our experience with terrorists and suicide bombers who blow themselves up, we have never had an American do this sort of thing in the past,” he said.

    Hundreds of thousands of Iranians visit Iraq’s Shiite holy sites each year despite the threat of violence from Sunni extremists. Shiite majority Iran has consistently demanded the withdrawal of US-led forces from Iraq and blames the continuing US military presence for the persistent bloodshed.

    Washington in turn accuses Tehran of fomenting sectarian violence in Iraq.

    google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gIJ2X-y-ewNvQRxJF7XlUPpK4AmQ

  148. Most could care less what is going on in the world. It is all about the money
    ——————————————-
    Hi neetabug! I find myself in agreement with them. I too am losing interest in the foreign affairs side of things for reasons that may or may not be obvious. But this domestic economy and the money–and by the way whose money–our money, our childrens money, Chinas money, the worthless money the FED is printing now is a big concern. You cannot remove 600,000 jobs from the economy month after month with no plan by Congress and this White House to replace them without consequences. The elites know this and that is why they are trying so hard to deify this jackass. They think he can bamboozle the masses. Coincidentally, I am going to have coffee with someone who was named CEO of the year by one of the leading business publications years ago. I am going to ask him for his assessment of the current economic situation. I will let you know what he says about the economy and Mr. Obama. I doubt it will differ much from what Gore is saying.

  149. “The American and Israeli intelligence apparatuses are the number-one accused… for the spread of the poisonous seeds of terrorism in Iraq,” Khamenei said in a message of condolence to the victims’ families broadcast on state television.

    “Those evil brains and sinful hands that established this blind, unbridled terrorism in Iraq should know that this fire will end up burning them,” the Iranian leader added
    _____________________________________

    Forget about that clown Chavez. This is the guy Bambi needs to make good on his campaign promise on, and have high tea with. Persuade him of the errors of his ways. Bring tele. I am sure he will listen. I am sure that will turn a new page in our foreign affairs. Especially once the Arab street sees the memos Obama is releasing on torture. Hope, Change, Lunacy.

  150. THIS IS UTTERLY DISGUSTING!!!!! MR. VACATION GOES GOLFING WHILE THE USA HEADS INTO FLU PANIC….WHAT AN IDIOT!!!!

    Obama gets in a round of golf on a sunny morning

    ANDREWS AIR FORCE BASE, Md. (AP) – President Barack Obama is taking advantage of the summer conditions in Washington to play a round of golf for the first time since taking office.

    His motorcade left the White House at midmorning Sunday for the course at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.

    Obama arrived at the course wearing sunglasses, a cream-colored baseball cap, short-sleeved shirt and khaki shorts. He shook hands with a few onlookers and waved to others before stepping into a golf cart.

    Joining the president were Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and presidential aide Marvin Nicholson.

  151. Israeli in hospital amid swine flu fears

    Amid growing international fears over the spread of the deadly swine flu virus, 25 Israeli tourists returning from Mexico were examined on Sunday, and one of them, who has a fever, was being held at the Laniado Hospital in Netanya.

    The 26-year-old man was being held in quarantine while medical staff waited for his test results.

    SNIP

    The ministry instructed doctors to take special notice of patients suffering from acute respiratory illnesses, who have a temperature higher than 38 degrees Celsius and who complain of coughing, throat aches, mucus or shortness of breath.

    SNIP

    Meanwhile, the World Health Organization tried to determine how to battle the deadly new strain of swine flu, holding teleconferences with staff and flu experts around the world as countries fromNew Zealand to France reported suspected cases.

    SNIP

    Governments across Asia began quarantining those with symptoms of the deadly virus and some issued travel warnings for Mexico.

    Some governments were increasing their screening of pigs and pork imports from the Americas or banning them outright despite health officials’ reassurances that it was safe to eat thoroughly cooked pork.

    SNIP

    New Zealand said that 10 students who took a school trip to Mexico “likely” had swine flu.

    France said that two people who had returned from Mexico with fevers were being monitored in regions near the port cities of Bordeaux and Marseille.

    Spain’s Health Ministry said three people who just returned from Mexico were under observation in hospitals in the northern Basque region, in southeastern Albacete and the Mediterranean port city of Valencia.

    Governments must report any unusual cases of flu to WHO, and the agency was considering whether to issue nonbinding recommendations on travel and trade restrictions, and even border closures. It is up to governments to decide whether to follow the advice.

    “Countries are encouraged to do anything that they feel would be a precautionary measure,” WHO spokeswoman Aphaluck Bhatiasevi said. “All countries need to enhance their monitoring.”

    H1N1 influenza is a subset of influenza A that is a combination of bird, pig and human viruses, according to the WHO. Symptoms include a fever of more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37.8 degrees Celsius), body aches, coughing, a sore throat, respiratory congestion and, in some cases, vomiting and diarrhea.

    At least 81 people have died from severe pneumonia caused by the flu-like illness in Mexico, according to the WHO.

    The virus is usually contracted through direct contact with pigs, but Joseph Domenech, chief of animal health service at UN Food and Agriculture Agency in Rome, said all indications were that the virus is being spread through human-to-human transmission.

    No vaccine specifically protects against swine flu, and it is unclear how much protection current human flu vaccines might offer.

    The WHO’s pandemic alert level is currently at to phase 3. The organization said the level could be raised to phase 4 if the virus shows sustained ability to pass from human to human.

    Phase 5 would be reached if the virus is found in at least two countries in the same region.

    “The declaration of phase 5 is a strong signal that a pandemic is imminent and that the time to finalize the organization, communication, and implementation of the planned mitigation measures is short,” WHO said.

    Phase 6 would indicate a full-scale global pandemic.

    SNIP

    Hong Kong and Taiwan said visitors who came back from affected areas with fevers would be quarantined. China said anyone experiencing flu-like symptoms within two weeks of arrival an affected area had to report to authorities.

    Tokyo’s Narita airport installed a device to test the temperatures of passengers arriving from Mexico.

    Indonesia increased surveillance at all entry points for travelers with flu-like symptoms – using devices at airports that were put in place years ago to monitor for severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, and bird flu. It said it was ready to quarantine suspected victims if necessary.

    A Russian health agency said any passenger from North America running a fever would be quarantined until cause of the fever is determined.

    Hong Kong and South Korea warned against travel to the Mexican capital and three affected provinces.

    Italy’s health ministry also advised citizens to postpone travel to affected areas.

    Serbia on Saturday banned all imports of pork from North America, despite reassurances from the FAO that pigs appear not to be the immediate source of infection.

    Italy’s agriculture lobby, Coldiretti, warned against panic reaction, noting that farmers lost hundreds of millions of euros because of consumers boycotts during the 2001 mad cow scare and the 2005 bird flu outbreak.

    Japanese Agriculture Minister Shigeru Ishiba appeared on TV to calm consumers, saying it was safe to eat pork.

    In Egypt, health authorities were examining about 350,000 pigs being raised in Cairo and other provinces for swine flu.

    jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull&cid=1239710785388

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

    AND WHAT IS OBAMA DOING?? GOLFING!!!!!!!!

    FOX HAD A DR ON THIS AM SAYING … you don’t need to do anything really, UNLESS….you develope a fever or experience pneumonia like symptems….. that there have been reports of hospitals actually turning people away as to not send a panic that will over come the hospital system………THIS IS DISGUSTING!!!

  152. US may use daisy-cutters ‘if Pakistan shows reluctance’
    By: Javed Siddique | Published: April 26, 2009

    ISLAMABAD – The political and military leadership of Pakistan has agreed to launch an operation against foreign elements involved in terrorist activities in the tribal areas.
    TheNation has learnt through reliable sources that during the past few weeks a large number of foreign militants have infiltrated into the tribal areas from across the borders of some neighbouring countries to disrupt law and order situation in the area. “Therefore, military operation against these elements has become inevitable,” the sources maintained. According to diplomatic sources, the United States and its western allies have expressed their grave concerns over the escalation of terrorist activities in Afghanistan as well as the tribal areas of Pakistan.
    The sources assert that the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen during his recent visit had conveyed a message to Pakistan’s political and military leadership that it was high time that the Pakistani government acted against these militants. He also made it clear that if Pakistan government showed any reluctance the US itself would launch air strikes against the hideouts of these al-Qaeda militants.
    According to these sources, Admiral Mullen warned that US could use daisy-cutters to crush these elements in what he called a ‘decisive operation,’ which could start any time.

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

    What is a
    daisy cutter”?

  153. just an update on the Flu from bitterpolitiz
    ******************************************

    current shot does not cover swine flu..i doubt they are even sure what the variant is–it’s an avian/swine combo….

    it’s not clear what is going on, but if you want to get the most current
    info from an expert go to

    recombinomics.com

    and go to the “what’s new” tab

    he says we are in stage 6 pandemic

  154. Obama: 100 days 100 Mistakes

    w w w.nypost.com/seven/04252009/postopinion/opedcolumnists/100_days__100_mistakes_166177.htm?&page=0

  155. What is a
    daisy cutter”?
    **********
    It is a 15,000lb bomb (BLU-82) first used in Vietnam to clear jungle for helo landing fields…has been used in Afghanistan as an anti-personal weapon and also for the psychological effect.

  156. Good Morning All. I will be in and out today.

    I guess you all saw the breaking news that we are now under a Health Emergency as they have validated 20 cases of the swine flu.

    Also is there something wrong with wordpress as my key stroke response is like 10 seconds before I see a character. This is not happening in the other areas of the internet for me.

  157. wbboei Says:
    April 26th, 2009 at 8:49 am

    ======================

    Makes sense to me. But it’s hard to believe even Obama would be that dumb. Or his legal department, rather.

  158. wbboei Says:
    April 26th, 2009 at 9:57 am

    The argument that works best with so called progressives is he is Bush III. The argument that works best with middle class is he is a tool of corporate interests. The argument that works best with Republicans is he is a socialist. All three propositions are true.

    ================

    How so?

  159. I have not kept up with appointments, has Obama appointed a health and human services secretary yet?? If so have they managed to get thru the financials checks?

  160. For me, the Greatest Chess Move of the Week goes to: The Honorable Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton!

    When Hillary went before the Foreign Relations Committee and basically through the gauntlet into obama’s hands by saying words to the effect that he had won the election and it was his agenda they were going with, I got the biggest smile on my face.

    In other words she is being a good team player, letting bambi fall flat on his face with his handshaking and tea parties with dictators and letting everyone know that this isn’t necessarily what she would have done.

    I would much rather have Hillary on the team to create as much damage control as possible, than have her walk away.jmo

  161. Clinton Urges Lebanese Election Free of Interference

    By Indira A.R. Lakshmanan

    April 26 (Bloomberg) — Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Lebanon’s coming parliamentary elections, in which the Shiite Hezbollah may form a coalition, must be free of foreign interference and violence. “The people of Lebanon must be able to choose their own representatives in open and fair elections, without the specter of violence or intimidation and free from outside influence,” Clinton said today in Beirut on an unannounced visit.

    The U.S. supports Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, who faces elections on June 7 in which Hezbollah will participate. Clinton last week expressed concern about extremists winning in the voting. The U.S., European Union and Israel designate the Iranian-backed Hezbollah a terrorist organization. “Beyond the elections, we will continue to support the voices of moderation in Lebanon and the responsible institutions of the state they are working hard to build,” Clinton said.

    An issue in the campaign is whether Hezbollah’s militia must disarm. Hezbollah fought a 33-day war with Israel in 2006.

    Clinton’s visit, her first to the country, and a meeting with President Michel Suleiman were intended to reassure Lebanon, a U.S. ally, of continued support, even as the U.S. tries to open talks with Iran and Syria. “The United States will never make any deal with Syria that sells out Lebanon or the Lebanese people,” Clinton said. “It is only right that you are given the chance to make your own decisions.” “It is a complicated neighborhood you live in, and you have a right to your own future,” she said.

    The visit coincided with the fourth anniversary of the withdrawal of Syrian forces from Lebanon.

    The U.S. recognizes that Hezbollah is popular among Lebanon’s Shiite population and likely to win numerous seats in the elections, a senior State Department official said on condition of anonymity.

    On the drive from the airport to the Baabda Palace, the main highway was lined with yellow billboards for Hezbollah with their symbol, a fist holding a Kalashnikov rifle, and the slogan “Lebanon.” The U.S. will evaluate its continued financial support to the Lebanese government based on the composition and program of the new government, the official said. The U.S. is concerned a Hezbollah-led government would broaden Syria’s and Iran’s influence in the region. The two nations support Hezbollah. Many Lebanese credit the group with ending Israel’s two-decade occupation of southern Lebanon in 2000.

    Hezbollah has led a low-key campaign so far, stressing anti-corruption and consensus governance. The group’s leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, has said it would form a government of national unity in the interests of stability. From 1975 to 1990, Lebanon was wracked by a civil war that primarily pitted Christians and Muslims. Under Lebanon’s political system, the 128-seat legislature must be half-Christian and half Muslim. The pro-U.S. coalition, mostly Sunnis with Christian and Druze allies, has 70 seats.
    Hezbollah and its allies have one-third of the seats in the cabinet.

    Since 2006, the U.S. has given over $1 billion to Lebanon, including $410 million to the country’s security forces.

    After meeting with president Suleiman in the Baabda Palace, Clinton visited Martyrs Square and laid a wreath at the tomb of the former prime minister, Rafiq Hariri. The U.S. withdrew its ambassador to Syria in 2005 following Hariri’s assassination.

    bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aFi3jcJYLiac&refer=home

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