Saturday, October 21, 2006

The Hero: Killed an Innocent Man

Guy's only "crime" was being a square peg in a round hole world, of being something of a failure.
Cops: Victim did not assault girl

FAIRFIELD — Police on Thursday confirmed what State's Attorney Jonathan Benedict told the media three days ago: No evidence exists to support the claim that murder victim Barry C. James had molested his accused killer's 2-year-old daughter.

"There's no evidence of any molestation occurring," police Capt. Gary MacNamara said. "We're confident that the evidence does not support any molestation." [Link.]

And then there still this part of the mystery: How does a two year old get -- or is elicited -- to say stuff like this?

According to a police report describing the mother's account, the girl told her mother about the alleged molestation while the family was visiting relatives in Rhode Island.

The girl "explained that she did not want to go home because of Barry," police said in the report. When her mother asked her to explain, the girl said "that Barry puts it on her belly and her nose," the report said. When her mother asked her when James does this, she replied, "He comes to me in the starry nights." [Link.]

I mean, really, WTF "comes to me in the starry nights" mean? Anything at all literal... well, it's either really, really bizarre or the parents kind of, um, well, neglected the baby, huh?

This whole things stink, in that the key stuff still isn't known. Still believe in my first theory: Dad was a time bomb ready to go off, and did. Or was triggered? Don't trust the mama at all....

Well the Edingtons really have done fine by the child and obviously did and has done a fine job by her....

Terry Jones Writes Our Leader

Dear President Bush,

I write to you in my capacity as secretary of the World League of Despots.

It is with great pleasure that I am finally able to extend an official invitation to you to join our ranks. For many years, we have watched your efforts to fulfil the requirements necessary to join our number. From the start, we were greatly impressed by your disdain for democratic principles - the way you wrested power from the democratically elected candidate in the 2000 election, and again in 2005 when you managed to swing what was clearly going to be a victory for your opponent.

Contempt for human life has always been a priority requirement for membership of the league, and I and my fellow adjudicators were well aware of your record as governor of Texas when you quadrupled the number of state executions. But your record since seizing power has surpassed even our expectations. The thousands of innocent people in Iraq, who have died so that you could fulfil your declared political objective of establishing "an American force presence in the Middle East", attest to your eligibility to join our ranks.

I cannot, however, disguise the fact that we adjudicators were extremely anxious when you announced your intention to remove from office one of our most stalwart members, Mr Saddam Hussein. However, we need not have worried. According to a recent UN report, you have ensured that there are now even more human rights abuses in Iraq than there were under Saddam. No less than 10% of those in custody are being physically or psychologically abused. Well done!

Of course, your unstinting efforts to make torture an internationally accepted aspect of human life have surpassed everything we could have ever hoped for. I don't think there is a single member of the league who could have imagined, six short years ago, that our activities in tormenting our fellow creatures would once again be recognised as acceptable, civilised behaviour, as it once was in the middle ages.

Despite these achievements, we had, until now, felt unable to extend our invitation to you because you had been unable to fulfil one of our basic requirements: the ability to carry out arbitrary arrests, imprisonment without trial, secret torture and executions at will.

We approved of your attempts to establish the principles of arbitrary arrest under the Homeland Security Act of 2002, but unfortunately it was still restricted to terror suspects. We appreciate that you were hampered by the US constitution, but the restrictions this imposed on your arbitrary powers kept you below the threshold requirements for qualification as a despot.

Now, however, all that has changed. At the end of last month you persuaded the Senate to pass a bill regarding the treatment of detainees. Illegally obtained evidence can now be used against suspects, even if it has been gathered abroad under torture. Anyone you care to accuse can be thrown into prison without the right to a trial or the right to represent themselves.

Officially the legislation is restricted to "enemy combatants", but you have skilfully adapted this definition to include anyone who has "purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the US". This presumably means that anyone who publicly criticises your conduct can be defined as supporting hostilities to the US. You are now free to arrest and imprison anyone you don't like. You've got it in the bag!

It is with great pleasure that we in the World League of Despots note that you have now appropriated to yourself all the powers of arbitrary arrest and torture that Saddam once enjoyed. You are now one of us. Congratulations!

Olbermann: Bye Bye Freedom, Civil Rights and Habeas Corpus

One of the guys who puts it better than me:
And lastly, as promised, a Special Comment tonight on the signing of the Military Commissions Act and the loss of Habeas Corpus.

We have lived as if in a trance. We have lived… as people in fear.

And now -- our rights and our freedoms in peril -- we slowly awake to learn that we have been afraid… of the wrong thing.

Therefore, tonight, have we truly become, the inheritors of our American legacy. For, on this first full day that the Military Commissions Act is in force, we now face what our ancestors faced, at other times of exaggerated crisis and melodramatic fear-mongering:

And lastly, as promised, a Special Comment tonight on the signing of the Military Commissions Act and the loss of Habeas Corpus.

We have lived as if in a trance.

We have lived… as people in fear.

And now -- our rights and our freedoms in peril -- we slowly awake to learn that we have been afraid… of the wrong thing.

Therefore, tonight, have we truly become, the inheritors of our American legacy.

For, on this first full day that the Military Commissions Act is in force, we now face what our ancestors faced, at other times of exaggerated crisis and melodramatic fear-mongering:

A government more dangerous to our liberty, than is the enemy it claims to protect us from.

We have been here before -- and we have been here before led here -- by men better and wiser and nobler than George W. Bush.

We have been here when President John Adams insisted that the Alien and Sedition Acts were necessary to save American lives -- only to watch him use those Acts to jail newspaper editors.

American newspaper editors, in American jails, for things they wrote, about America.

We have been here, when President Woodrow Wilson insisted that the Espionage Act was necessary to save American lives -- only to watch him use that Act to prosecute 2,000 Americans, especially those he disparaged as "Hyphenated Americans," most of whom were guilty only of advocating peace in a time of war.

American public speakers, in American jails, for things they said, about America.

And we have been here when President Franklin D. Roosevelt insisted that Executive Order 9-0-6-6 was necessary to save American lives -- only to watch him use that Order to imprison and pauperize 110-thousand Americans…

While his man-in-charge…

General DeWitt, told Congress: "It makes no difference whether he is an American citizen -- he is still a Japanese."

American citizens, in American camps, for something they neither wrote nor said nor did -- but for the choices they or their ancestors had made, about coming to America.

Each of these actions was undertaken for the most vital, the most urgent, the most inescapable of reasons.

And each, was a betrayal of that for which the President who advocated them, claimed to be fighting.

Adams and his party were swept from office, and the Alien and Sedition Acts erased.

Many of the very people Wilson silenced, survived him, and…

…one of them even ran to succeed him, and got 900-thousand votes… though his Presidential campaign was conducted entirely… from his jail cell.

And Roosevelt's internment of the Japanese was not merely the worst blight on his record, but it would necessitate a formal apology from the government of the United States, to the citizens of the United States, whose lives it ruined.

The most vital… the most urgent… the most inescapable of reasons.

In times of fright, we have been, only human.

We have let Roosevelt's "fear of fear itself" overtake us.

We have listened to the little voice inside that has said "the wolf is at the door; this will be temporary; this will be precise; this too shall pass."

We have accepted, that the only way to stop the terrorists, is to let the government become just a little bit like the terrorists.

Just the way we once accepted that the only way to stop the Soviets, was to let the government become just a little bit like the Soviets.

Or substitute… the Japanese.

Or the Germans.

Or the Socialists.

Or the Anarchists.

Or the Immigrants.

Or the British.

Or the Aliens.

The most vital, the most urgent, the most inescapable of reasons.

And, always, always… wrong.

"With the distance of history, the questions will be narrowed and few: Did this generation of Americans take the threat seriously, and did we do what it takes to defeat that threat?"

Wise words.

And ironic ones, Mr. Bush.

Your own, of course, yesterday, in signing the Military Commissions Act.

You spoke so much more than you know, Sir.

Sadly -- of course -- the distance of history will recognize that the threat this generation of Americans needed to take seriously… was you.

We have a long and painful history of ignoring the prophecy attributed to Benjamin Franklin that "those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

But even within this history, we have not before codified, the poisoning of Habeas Corpus, that wellspring of protection from which all essential liberties flow.

You, sir, have now befouled that spring.

You, sir, have now given us chaos and called it order.

You, sir, have now imposed subjugation and called it freedom.

For the most vital… the most urgent… the most inescapable of reasons.

And -- again, Mr. Bush -- all of them, wrong.

We have handed a blank check drawn against our freedom to a man who has said it is unacceptable to compare anything this country has ever done, to anything the terrorists have ever done.

We have handed a blank check drawn against our freedom to a man who has insisted again that "the United States does not torture. It's against our laws and it's against our values" and who has said it with a straight face while the pictures from Abu Ghraib Prison and the stories of Waterboarding figuratively fade in and out, around him.

We have handed a blank check drawn against our freedom to a man who may now, if he so decides, declare not merely any non-American citizens "Unlawful Enemy Combatants" and ship them somewhere -- anywhere -- but may now, if he so decides, declare you an "Unlawful Enemy Combatant" and ship you somewhere - anywhere.

And if you think this, hyperbole or hysteria… ask the newspaper editors when John Adams was President, or the pacifists when Woodrow Wilson was President, or the Japanese at Manzanar when Franklin Roosevelt was President.

And if you somehow think Habeas Corpus has not been suspended for American citizens but only for everybody else, ask yourself this: If you are pulled off the street tomorrow, and they call you an alien or an undocumented immigrant or an "unlawful enemy combatant" -- exactly how are you going to convince them to give you a court hearing to prove you are not? Do you think this Attorney General is going to help you?

This President now has his blank check.

He lied to get it.

He lied as he received it.

Is there any reason to even hope, he has not lied about how he intends to use it, nor who he intends to use it against?

"These military commissions will provide a fair trial," you told us yesterday, Mr. Bush. "In which the accused are presumed innocent, have access to an attorney, and can hear all the evidence against them."

'Presumed innocent,' Mr. Bush?

The very piece of paper you signed as you said that, allows for the detainees to be abused up to the point just before they sustain "serious mental and physical trauma" in the hope of getting them to incriminate themselves, and may no longer even invoke The Geneva Conventions in their own defense.

'Access to an attorney,' Mr. Bush?

Lieutenant Commander Charles Swift said on this program, Sir, and to the Supreme Court, that he was only granted access to his detainee defendant, on the promise that the detainee would plead guilty.

'Hearing all the evidence,' Mr. Bush?

The Military Commissions act specifically permits the introduction of classified evidence not made available to the defense.

Your words are lies, Sir.

They are lies, that imperil us all.

"One of the terrorists believed to have planned the 9/11 attacks," …you told us yesterday… "said he hoped the attacks would be the beginning of the end of America."

That terrorist, sir, could only hope.

Not his actions, nor the actions of a ceaseless line of terrorists (real or imagined), could measure up to what you have wrought.

Habeas Corpus? Gone.

The Geneva Conventions? Optional.

The Moral Force we shined outwards to the world as an eternal beacon, and inwards at ourselves as an eternal protection? Snuffed out.

These things you have done, Mr. Bush… they would be "the beginning of the end of America."

And did it even occur to you once sir -- somewhere in amidst those eight separate, gruesome, intentional, terroristic invocations of the horrors of 9/11 -- that with only a little further shift in this world we now know -- just a touch more repudiation of all of that for which our patriots died --

Did it ever occur to you once, that in just 27 months and two days from now when you leave office, some irresponsible future President and a "competent tribunal" of lackeys would be entitled, by the actions of your own hand, to declare the status of "Unlawful Enemy Combatant" for… and convene a Military Commission to try… not John Walker Lindh, but George Walker Bush?

For the most vital, the most urgent, the most inescapable of reasons.

And doubtless, sir, all of them -- as always -- wrong.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Nothing to Fear but Our Leaders; And Something Else the Times Gets Wrong

The New York Times lead editorial gives false comfort to American citizens by assuring them that they will not be victims of George W. Bush’s new draconian system for prosecuting enemies of the U.S. government in military tribunals outside constitutional protections.

“This law does not apply to American citizens,” the Times editorial stated, “but it does apply to other legal United States residents. And it chips away at the foundations of the judicial system in ways that all Americans should find threatening.” [NYT, Oct. 19, 2006]

However, the Times analysis appears to be far too gentle. While it’s true that some parts of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 target non-citizens, other sections clearly apply to U.S. citizens as well, putting citizens inside the same tribunal system with resident aliens and foreigners.

“Any person is punishable as a principal under this chapter who commits an offense punishable by this chapter, or aids, abets, counsels, commands, or procures its commission,” according to the law, passed by the Republican-controlled Congress in September and signed by Bush on Oct. 17.

Another provision of the law states that “any person subject to this chapter who, in breach of an allegiance or duty to the United States, knowingly and intentionally aids an enemy of the United States, or one of the co-belligerents of the enemy [presumably U.S. military allies, such as Great Britain and Israel], shall be punished as a military commission … may direct.” [Emphases added]

If the Times is correct that “this law does not apply to American citizens,” why does it contain language referring to “any person” and then adding in an adjacent context a reference to people acting “in breach of an allegiance or duty to the United States”?

Who has “an allegiance or duty to the United States” if not an American citizen? That provision would not presumably apply to Osama bin Laden or al-Qaeda, nor would it apply generally to foreign citizens. This section of the law appears to be singling out American citizens.


Though the new law specifically strips non-U.S. citizens of habeas corpus – the right to a fair trial – American citizens caught up in Bush’s legal system also would be denied the right to challenge their incarceration.

Besides allowing for “any person” to go into Bush’s system, the law prohibits detainees once inside the system from appealing to the traditional American courts until a defendant is fully prosecuted and sentenced, which could translate into an indefinite imprisonment since there are no timetables for Bush’s tribunal process to play out.

The law states that once a person is detained, “no court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider any claim or cause of action whatsoever … relating to the prosecution, trial, or judgment of a military commission under this chapter, including challenges to the lawfulness of procedures of military commissions.”

That court-stripping provision – barring “any claim or cause of action whatsoever” – would seem to deny American citizens habeas corpus rights just as it does for non-citizens. If a person can’t file a motion with a court, he can’t assert any constitutional rights, including habeas corpus.

Other constitutional protections in the Bill of Rights – such as a speedy trial, the right to reasonable bail and the ban on “cruel and unusual punishment” – would seem to be beyond an American detainee’s reach as well.

Though the New York Times suggests that the new law “chips away at the foundations of the judicial system,” the law actually seems to obliterate the old judicial system.

Secret Trials

By putting detainees, apparently including American citizens outside the U.S. constitutional process, Bush’s system makes a mockery of the Sixth Amendment in particular. It reads:

“In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed … and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; [and] to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses.”

By contrast, in Bush’s system, there are no guarantees of either a speedy or a public trial. Secrecy dominates in a process run by U.S. military officers whose careers depend on the favor of the Commander in Chief.

Under the new law, the military judge “may close to the public all or a portion of the proceedings” if he deems that the evidence must be kept secret for national security reasons. Those concerns can be conveyed to the judge through ex parte – or one-sided – communications from the prosecutor or a government representative.

The judge also can exclude the accused from the trial if there are safety concerns or if the defendant is disruptive. Plus, the judge can admit evidence obtained through coercion if he determines it “possesses sufficient probative value” and “the interests of justice would best be served by admission of the statement into evidence.”

The law permits, too, the introduction of secret evidence “while protecting from disclosure the sources, methods, or activities by which the United States acquired the evidence if the military judge finds that ... the evidence is reliable.”

During trial, the prosecutor would have the additional right to assert a “national security privilege” that could stop “the examination of any witness,” presumably by the defense if the questioning touched on any sensitive matter.

In effect, what the new law appears to do is to create a parallel “star chamber” system for the prosecution, imprisonment and elimination of enemies of the state, whether those enemies are foreign or domestic.

Terror Fears

The Times editorial writers might also take into account the circumstances under which Bush is likely to execute his new powers. Imagine, for example, a terrorist incident or a threat of one somewhere in the United States. Amid public anger and fear, Bush or some future President could begin rounding up citizens and non-citizens alike.

Once these detainees are locked up at Guantanamo Bay or some other prison facility, they could be held incommunicado and denied access to civilian courts under the law’s court-stripping provision.

It could take years before the U.S. Supreme Court even addresses these detentions and – given the increasingly right-wing make-up of the Court – there would be no assurance that the justices wouldn’t endorse the President’s extraordinary powers.

The Times also might want to take note of the curious provision in the law that would jail “any person” who “collects or attempts to collect information by clandestine means or while acting under false pretenses, for the purpose of conveying such information to an enemy of the United States.”

Since the Bush administration and its political allies often have accused the New York Times of collecting and publishing information, from confidential sources, that is helpful to U.S. enemies – for instance, the stories about Bush’s secret wiretapping program – this provision arguably could apply to Times reporters and editors.

This “spying” provision not only puts alleged offenders into Bush’s special legal system but it could result in the offenders being sentenced to death.

Here's Your Terror!

No need to suspend habeas corpus, terror is right here!


But the People Want Rightwing Lies Instead of News

NBC finally looked at the ratings of CNBC and MSNBC and realized that two evening slates of rightist idiocy (Olbermann excepted, of course) don't attract anywhere enough viewers to support two. (Link.)

Utter Crap

One of Our Leader's numerous derange-o enablers spews patent bullshit:
During the bitter controversy over the military commission bill, which President Bush signed into law on Tuesday, most of the press and the professional punditry missed the big story. In the struggle for power between the three branches of government, it is not the presidency that "won." Instead, it is the judiciary that lost.

The new law is, above all, a stinging rebuke to the Supreme Court. It strips the courts of jurisdiction to hear any habeas corpus claim filed by any alien enemy combatant anywhere in the world. It was passed in response to the effort by a five-justice majority in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld to take control over terrorism policy. That majority extended judicial review to Guantanamo Bay, threw the Bush military commissions into doubt, and tried to extend the protections of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions to al Qaeda and Taliban detainees, overturning the traditional understanding that Geneva does not cover terrorists, who are not signatories nor "combatants" in an internal civil war under Article 3.

Hamdan was an unprecedented attempt by the court to rewrite the law of war and intrude into war policy. The court must have thought its stunning power grab would go unchallenged. After all, it has gotten away with many broad assertions of judicial authority before. This has been because Congress is unwilling to take a clear position on controversial issues (like abortion, religion or race) and instead passes ambiguous laws which breed litigation and leave the power to decide to the federal courts.
(More here.)

Of course, they have no shame.

Of course, this comes from the Wall Street Journal's famously deranged editorial page....

Fascism in Action: The Wingnuts System of Law

Of course, a corporation is above the law, allowed to spy on people with no fear of any repercussion. (Link.)

Therefore, it's perfectly fair and proper for the California Attorney General to go after the then-chair of the board and the others. Simple: laws get broken, someone, not something, held responsible. Which is of course the flaw in the bedrock of our modern proto-fascist state: a "thing" like a corporation cannot per se have rights superior to a person.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Steve Keller Brings You this Very Important Scoop

For those who might have been unaware of this....
'Media let country down'
New York Times editor says news outlets should have dug into Iraq weapons reports
But has the Times run this yet?


Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Yet More Proof that the Clintonites Failed with North Korea

North Korea’s nuclear test has been linked to a plutonium process that was unfrozen after George W. Bush started talking tough about regime change in Pyongyang and reversed a Clinton administration policy against aiming nuclear weapons at non-nuclear states.

The New York Times reported that U.S. officials have identified the source of the North Korean nuclear blast as plutonium harvested from a small nuclear reactor whose nuclear fuel was put under seal in 1994 through a deal reached with the Clinton administration.

But in 2003, after two years of mounting threats from George W. Bush – including listing North Korea as part of the “axis of evil” – the government of Kim Jong Il threw out international inspectors, unsealed the plutonium and began processing it.

Missed This? Nuclear Weapons are Spreading like Wildfire

We're going to have a whole bunch of North Koreas within the next couple of years, per Hans Blix. Link (in German; one translation site is here).

Poor Jeanine

Her deepest darkest secrets are here.... Well, there's still the issue of how she could be so clueless about her husband and anyone, herself include, believes her fit for any elected office... or any public office....

Crap from the Famously Vile New York Post

(Link -- as if it matters.) Why brainless hysteria -- the Lynn Stewart thing. If it's such a black day in American history, why is that vile, vile narcissist Madonna on top, so to speak? Isn't clear what the the Post's priorities are? Black a day as it may be, Madonna's BS is still of greater importance -- or the Post's editors contemptuously believes those are its readers' priorities.

P.S. Dunno what kind of "pass" a disbarred attorney is getting. "Disbarred" means unable to work as an attorney, maybe not work at all to speak of. Of course, Stewart might be getting $$ from supporters -- just like a wingnut....

And for utter, vile crap, there's this brain-dead hysteria:
October 17, 2006 -- IT WAS all just an act. Lynne Stewart, a former lawyer who specialized in spreading terror and hate around the world, lumbered into a courtroom looking sick, crestfallen and oh, so sorry.

She bounced out of the bleak room hours later like she'd just won the lottery. And, well, she had.

"People are clamoring for a party!" Stewart announced when it was over. And she put her arm around me as she walked.

Stewart had faced 30 years in prison for smuggling out messages of death from her client, imprisoned terrorist Omar Abdel-Rahman. The blind sheik, who has followers throughout the Middle East, called for the slayings of infidels - nonbelievers in his violent brand of Islam.

Stewart knew damn well that her efforts on behalf of the cleric could result in the deaths of innocents. Even the judge had to admit it.
Link to more crap.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Essential Reading from HuffPo

Everything's our fault, the fault of anyone who's not a wingnut....

And my Goddess, Jane Smiley, posts:
Last week (an eventful week, to be sure), two sentences became juxtaposed in my consciousness. From Newsweek, concerning Bob Woodward's "State of Denial", we have, "The president is folksy and jocular, but incurious to the point of cluelessness." And from the Associated Press, concerning the new detainees bill, "Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who is defending President Bush's anti-terrorism tactics in multiple court battles, said Friday that federal judges should not substitute their personal views for the president's judgments in wartime."

So, as the world becomes more and more dangerous, as we come to know with more and more clarity and certainty that the president has never either known what he was doing with regard to Al Queda or the war in Iraq nor cared to find out, we are told that, nevertheless, that trained judges with education and experience, who know the law and the Constitution, and who, indeed, may be widely traveled, cosmopolitan, and sophisticated in their thinking, are to watch their step because Bush is in charge, and what he says goes.
Oodles more at the link, of course.

Mel Clarifies His Drunken Statements for Us

On the night of July 28, Gibson said he knew what might have been in his mind as he drunkenly said, "Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world."

"That's fear related, OK? So, you know, you have your own fears about these things," he said on "Good Morning America."

"Now, maybe it was just that very day that Lebanon and Israel were at it, you know," Gibson said of that night.

It was the 17th day of the raging war in Lebanon. A lot of people were worrying that the crisis was escalating out of control.

"Since I was a kid in the '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s and now in the new millennium, you can read of an ever-escalating kind of conflagration over there in the Middle East that … I remember thinking when I was 20, man, that place is going to drag us all into the black hole, you know, just the … the difficulty over there," he said. "You start thinking will I ever see my grandchildren grow up? … What's going to become of the world? What's going to press the button?"

"But there's a difference between saying that place is a tinderbox and the constellation of things happening there could take us all down, and saying the Jews are responsible for all the wars," Sawyer said.

"Well, I did," he said of his comment to the officer that night.

"The Jews are responsible?" Sawyer said.

"Well. … Strictly speaking, that's … that's not true because it takes two to tango," he said. "What are they responsible for? I think that they're not blameless in the conflict. There's been aggression, and retaliation and aggression. It's just part of being in conflict, and being at war. So, they're not blameless."

Gibson said that when people are drunk, they express what they think incorrectly.

"Now when you're loaded, you know, the balance of how you see things -- it comes out the wrong way. I know that it's not as black and white as that. I know that you just can't, you know, roar about things like that. That it's wrong," he said.

When Sawyer countered that a lot of people would say he was still blaming the Jews, Gibson said he wasn't blaming them.

"No, no. Did … did I say that?" he asked.

After several rounds on the Middle East, he said this was his statement of his true feelings.

"Let me be real clear, here. In sobriety, sitting here, in front of you, national television. … That I don't believe that Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world. I mean that's an outrageous, drunken statement," he said.

But he said something else was eating at him that night. He said he had realized he had been harboring an old resentment.

"The other place it may have come from is, you know, as you know, a couple of years ago I released the film 'Passion.' … Even before anyone saw a frame of the film, for an entire year, I was subjected to a pretty brutal sort of public beating," he said.

"During the course of that, I think I probably had my rights violated in many different ways as an American. You know. As an artist. As a Christian. Just as a human being, you know."

Here! A Plan for Iraq for Our Leaders!


Pirro: Liar

Lying politicians is a redundancy but some lies are worse than others, simply inexcuseable.

Here's our girl Jeanine:
Ms. Pirro said, “There was no new evidence during the time I was the D.A.”
Then here's the reality-based factual truth of the matter:
Jeffrey Deskovic's attorney filed the paperwork in 2000, asking for more improved DNA testing to see whether Deskovic was wrongly convicted of raping and killing a high school classmate when he was 16. A copy of the filing was sent to Pirro's office. She was district attorney at the time.

Deskovic has also said that he wrote to Pirro in 1997 after reading that she supports overturning wrongful convictions with DNA evidence.
One only hopes the truth will hurt....

Monday, October 16, 2006

Public Service Announcement from this Blog: Beat Diebold 7 November

Good old fashioned paper absentee ballots. Beat the machines, have your vote count -- and be correctly counted.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

It Can and is Happening Here... the Slide to an American Fascism

Gore Vidal was pretty much right, albeit awfully premature, when he called Billy Buckley a crypto-fascist. If Buckley wasn't (although he's always been damn close), he certainly was and is an enabler so no signifcant difference.

Anyway, today's review of America's descent towards fascism is here.

Checking in with Jeanine Pirro

The story thus far: Westchester County's ex-D.A... signed off on joint tax returns that took a deduction for the family car J used for work -- except it was the thieving, lying husband's company's car, that is, the D.A. not only took a benefit or perk from a private company, but she signed off on the tax return claiming a deduction. Very astute. Managed to find the time to get into "People" as one of the 50 most beautiful people.... Just about the only lawyer in Westchester who didn't know what an absolute total lying sack of crap scumbag her husband was... (well we've already seen how much attention she paid to his business).

Big claim to fame was a focus on trying to jail every sexual pervert, or at least predator, in the county and

Holy crap, will you look at this???
In Sex Arrests Hailed by Pirro, Little Jail Time
Looks like Jeanine didn't do quite as wonderful job as she'd want us to believe.

Personally, I have an issue that a sex crime can result in a de facto lifetime sentence but on the other hand, if a predator is convicted, jailtime is, well, a good thing, the more the better. In Republican pol fashion, Jeanine found and finds it easier to talk a policy than to, you know, actually do something to, like, implement a policy.

And let us not forget the brilliance of consulting Giuliani buttboy and all around inexperienced "investigator", corrupt petty thief Ray Kerik, for bugging hubby's boat.

Speaking of the scumbag sack of crap, even husband Al Pirro is against Jeanine!

Anyone Really Need Proof that the GOP is Lying about the Foley Affair and the Role of their Leadership?

Well, just in case proof is needed....

Proof that Our Leaders Believe in an Honest Legal System

Restoring pride in being an American:
The Navy lawyer whose successful defense of Osama bin Laden's driver led to the Supreme Court's landmark Hamdan decision has been passed over for promotion.

Under the Navy's "up or out" promotion system, the decision forces Lt. Cmdr. Charles Swift into early retirement. He learned of the decision about two weeks after this summer's ruling in Hamdan, which was a historic rebuke to the Bush Administration, and not long after the National Law Journal named Swift one of the top 100 lawyers in America.

Stare at This and You Can Almost See Our Leader's Face


W's Genius

Karl Rove, I mean; Our Leader has no genius of his own, always relying on others.

Rove has gotten great hagiography as, like, the world's greatest political op ever.

But really, there's no genius; just ruthlessness for the low blow and a complete lack of any decency, a reliance on fear and lies.
Yesterday, a source close to Foley explained to THE NEW REPUBLIC that in early 2006 the congressman had all but decided to retire from the House and set up shop on K Street. "Mark's a friend of mine," says this source. "He told me, 'I'm thinking about getting out of it and becoming a lobbyist.'"

But when Foley's friend saw the congressman again this spring, something had changed. To the source's surprise, Foley told him he would indeed be standing for re-election. What happened? Karl Rove intervened.

According to the source, Foley said he was being pressured by "the White House and Rove gang," who insisted that Foley run. If he didn't, Foley was told, it might impact his lobbying career.

"He said, 'The White House made it very clear I have to run,'" explains Foley's friend, adding that Foley told him that the White House promised that if Foley served for two more years it would "enhance his success" as a lobbyist. "I said, 'I thought you wanted out of this?' And he said, 'I do, but they're scared of losing the House and the thought of two years of congressional hearings, so I have two more years of duty.'"

GOP Morality: An Endless Series of Profiles


A GOP Rep is really, really happy meeting a few constituents (and maybe future pages?).

And here, he really looks really, really happy:


Our Leaders' Success in North Korea; Clinton's Failures

Our Leaders enable -- finance -- a member of the Axis of Evil post-9/11. Obviously, there is a brilliant strategy at work beyond our feeble pinko minds because, you know, these guys are superior people and all.

Again: Clinton=failure, Our Leader=brilliant success:
"Failure" =1994-2002 -- Era of Clinton 'Agreed Framework': No plutonium production. All existing plutonium under international inspection. No bomb.

"Success" = 2002-2006 -- Bush Policy Era: Active plutonium production. No international inspections of plutonium stocks. Nuclear warhead detonated.

Face it. They ditched an imperfect but working policy. They replaced it with nothing. Now North Korea is a nuclear state.

Facts hurt. So do nukes.
As [Clinton Secretary of Defense William] Perry says, harsh rhetoric and inaction.
(And here's where he says it.)

And the next President of the United States, John McLain, says Clinton failed:
John McCain seems to have some difficulties with physics and the historical record in his attempt to blame Bill Clinton for the latest crisis on the Korean Peninsula.

Said the Arizona Senator: "I would remind Senator (Hillary) Clinton and other critics of the Bush administration policies that the framework agreement of the Clinton administration was a failure."

Some basic facts.

The 1994 crisis came about because the North Koreans were producing weapons-grade plutonium. Under the Agreed Framework, they agreed to shutter the plutonium production facility and put the already produced plutonium under international oversight.

In return, the US promised aide, help building lightwater reactors (which don't help with bombs) and diplomatic normalization.

That agreement kept the plutonium operation on ice until the end of 2002.

President Bush came to office wanting to pull out of the agreement and did so when evidence surfaced suggesting that the North Koreans were secretly trying to enrich uranium (a separate path to the bomb).

The bomb that went off yesterday was made with plutonium, the same stuff that was off-limits from 1994-2002. In all likelihood some of the same stuff that was on ice from 1994-2002.

To the best of my knowledge, no one thinks the North Koreans are close to having enough uranium to make a nuclear weapon that way. And it's not even completely clear they were ever trying to enrich uranium.

So Clinton strikes a deal to keep plutonium out of the North Koreans' hands. The deal keeps the plutonium out of reach for the last six years of Clinton's term and the first two of Bush's. Bush pulls out of the deal. Four years later a plutonium bomb explodes.

Clinton's fault, right?

There's certainly an argument to be made that you don't make agreements with parties you don't trust, like the North Koreans. And perhaps President Bush would have had some leg to stand on if he'd pulled out of the Agreed Framework and replaced it with something better -- either force or a better agreement. But he didn't. He just did nothing for four years. Now we have plutonium, probably uranium and actual bombs. And according to McCain, it's all Bill Clinton's fault.
And here is the video of the next Prez saying it.

Inexplicably, amazingly, George Herbert Walker Bush's National Security Adviser says Our Leader erred in North Korea.