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Impeach Bush--Index 36

October 23, 2006
Corrupt arms deals cost Iraq $800M
The former minister, Ali Allawi, told CBS' "60 Minutes" that $1.2 billion had been allocated from the Iraqi treasury to the defense ministry to buy new weapons. About $400 million was spent on outdated equipment, while the rest of the money was simply stolen, he said in the interview, which aired Sunday

October 22, 2006
Half a billion dollars earmarked to fight the insurgency in Iraq was stolen
(CBS) More than half a billion dollars earmarked to fight the insurgency in Iraq was stolen by people the U.S. had entrusted to run the country's Ministry of Defense before the 2005 elections, according to Iraqi investigators.

October 17, 2006
The Republican structural advantage
GOP candidates hold an average cash advantage of $450,000 in 25 of the most competitive districts."

My back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest that because of this "geographic gerrymander," even a substantial turnaround in total Congressional votes -- say, from the three-percentage-point Republican lead in 2004 to a five-point Democratic lead this year -- would leave the House narrowly in Republican hands. It looks as if the Democrats need as much as a seven-point lead in the overall vote to take control.

Clearly this young man hasn't learned how the US media works. They report a threat - don't check the facts and both Homeland Security and the media have egg on their face. When the next so called threat comes up, will you believe them. I won't. I haven't believed one of their threats so far and I refuse to give in to this insanity.

October 21, 2006
Stadium Hoax Was Prank by Grocery Clerk
'As I understand it, Mr. Brahm had put out this threat thinking it was so preposterous that no one would take it seriously,' Ruminski said. 'Unfortunately, he was wrong.'

The warnings briefly set off a scare this week, before federal authorities announced the warnings were a hoax.

The media is shameless in their promotion of the GOP agenda - even when it requires them to rewrite history.

October 20, 2006
USA Today Contract With America Mythes
Summary: In an editorial, USA Today asserted that the Democrats may not take control of the House and/or the Senate in November because they have "failed to put together a platform as effective as the Contract with America was in bringing Republicans to power in 1994." In fact, polls from 1994 show that only a small percentage of voters said they were influenced by the contract -- and that most had not even heard of it.

It seems obvious - broadcast and cable news care more about ratings and profits than facts. Running political ads for the GOP in their news segments has been common for a very long time. The GOP knows where to buy ads, on the news networks. Then they get free air time to boot.

October 20, 2006
Broadcast and cable news gave GOP free air time for new fearmongering terrorism ad
On October 20, the RNC announced that it "has purchased advertising time on national cable news outlets to air the ad on television on Sunday, October 22." The broadcast and cable news networks, however, have already played portions of the ad several times as part of their news programming -- essentially giving the RNC the opportunity to fearmonger on their airwaves free of charge.

The GOP thinks they're better suited to tell you how, when and where you can spend your money. The nanny state is alive and well. Social conservative need government to push their religious beliefs down our throats.

October 19, 2006
Conservative Nanny State Continues to Grow
The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act: It was getting late on Oct. 12, the night before a sweeping anti-Internet gambling bill would be signed into law. Paul McGuire was at his computer, enjoying one last hurrah on PartyPoker, a site that had pledged to kick off all U.S. users as soon as the law left President Bush's desk. "It was kind of like that last party before summer ends when you've got to go back to school," says McGuire, a 34-year-old New Yorker and author of the popular "Tao of Poker" blog.

White Phosphorus is banned by the Chemical Weapons Convention. The US signed and ratified the Convention and then used chemical weapons (WMD) in Iraq. Now we have confirmation that Israel used chemical weapons. This White House claimed chemical weapons are so bad we had to destroy a country to find them and we had to use those same banned weapons in our search for banned weapons that never existed.

As usual the US media let the Bush White House lie about using chemical weapons (WMD) in Iraq and allowed them to get away with blatant hypocrisy.

October 23, 2006
Israel admits it used phosphorus weapons
The Israeli government has admitted that it used controversial phosphorus weapons in its attacks against targets during its month long war in Lebanon this summer.

The chemical can be used in shells, missiles and grenades and causes horrific burning when it comes into contact with human flesh.

The problem is singular. Republicans truly believe the purpose of a free press is solely to promote their version of reality, no matter how unreal it is. It wasn't long ago that Bush challenged the media to go to Guantanamo Bay and see for themselves. CNN took up the challenge and had their equipment ceased by the Pentagon. Bush says one thing, then orders the military to do the opposite.

October 20, 2006
Calif. Republican asks Pentagon to remove embedded CNN reporters
SAN DIEGO - The chairman of the House Armed Services Committee asked the Pentagon on Friday to remove CNN reporters embedded with U.S. combat troops, saying the network's broadcast of a video showing insurgent snipers targeting U.S. soldiers was tantamount to airing an enemy propaganda film.

October 22, 2006
Diplomat Cites U.S. 'Stupidity' in Iraq
BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - A senior U.S. diplomat said the United States had shown "arrogance" and "stupidity" in Iraq but was now ready to talk with any group except Al-Qaida in Iraq to facilitate national reconciliation.

His office is part of an ongoing criminal investigation. Why is this man in charge of investigating waste, fraud and abuse?

October 19, 2006
Lewis assailed for firing panel's investigators
WASHINGTON - A top government watchdog group criticized Rep. Jerry Lewis on Friday for dismissing dozens of auditors from the House Appropriations Committee.

Lewis, the Redlands Republican who chairs the federal spending panel, failed to renew the contracts of 60 investigators who worked as independent contractors examining waste, fraud and abuse related to Iraq war spending, Hurricane Katrina and other programs.

October 13, 2006
Lewis pays $750,000 for legal costs of probe
Inland Rep. Jerry Lewis has paid $750,000 to a prominent Los Angeles-based law firm to handle aspects of an ongoing federal investigation into his relationship with an embattled Washington lobbying firm, newly released campaign finance records show.

the law firm represents 65 percent of the $1.16 million he has raised through Sept. 30.

October 19, 2006
Bob Ney, Guilty but Still at Capitol
WASHINGTON, Oct. 18 — Representative Bob Ney is headed to prison early next year after pleading guilty to charges of accepting tens of thousands of dollars in illegal gifts from lobbyists. Until then, Mr. Ney, a six-term Republican from Ohio, has a comfortable place to bide his time.

His Congressional office — the one that he has effectively acknowledged selling to the highest bidder — is open for business.

First rule of GOP politics; "don't get caught." Second rule: "when you get caught blame Democrats." Rule #3: "When Rule 1 and 2 fail, you're screwed."

October 19, 2006
GOP congressional candidate sent a letter threatening Hispanic immigrant voters
State and federal officials were investigating the letter, which was written in Spanish and mailed to an estimated 14,000 Democratic voters in central Orange County. It warns, "You are advised that if your residence in this country is illegal or you are an immigrant, voting in a federal election is a crime that could result in jail time."

Immigrants who are adult naturalized citizens are eligible to vote.

October 20, 2006
Foley Scandal Points Up Acceptance And Anxieties of Gay Staffers
In the 13 years since, even as gays have moved visibly into mainstream America, they hold a tenuous, complicated spot within the ranks of the GOP, whose earlier libertarian, live-and-let-live values have been ground down by the wedge issue of opposition to gay rights. And, even though an Inhofe staffer confirmed last week that his boss still maintains his employment ban, many gay men are key aides to Republican legislators, powerful silent partners in winning elections by pledging allegiance to religious "values voters" ever on the alert against "the homosexual agenda."

This dichotomy -- or hypocrisy, depending on who's doing the labeling -- has been forced out of the closet by the page scandal, just as surely as Foley.

October 19, 2006
Approval of Republicans at Record Low
WASHINGTON (Oct. 19) - With congressional elections less than three weeks away, the Republican party's approval ratings are at an all-time low, with approval of the Republican-led Congress at its lowest point in 14 years, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Wednesday.

Forty-seven percent of respondents said they were less in favor of keeping Republicans in control of Congress, compared to 14 percent who were more in favor of maintaining the current congressional makeup, according to the poll.

We have secret courts that let the government spy on us and they're allowed to spy on us without court orders. But, we're not allowed to see what the government is doing. So much for government "of, by and for the people."

October 19, 2006
Judge orders Cheney visitor logs opened
WASHINGTON - A federal judge has ordered the Bush administration to release information about who visited Vice President Dick Cheney's office and personal residence, an order that could spark a late election-season debate over lobbyists' White House access.

October 21, 2006
Record ozone hole
THE hole in the ozone layer over the southern hemisphere is the largest ever, covering an area more than three times the size of Australia.

During the last nine days of September, the hole in the ozone layer covered, on average, nearly 17.5 million square kilometres.

October 17, 2006
FDA commissioner Pleads Guilty
The Justice Department also accused Crawford of conflict of interest, charging that as chairman of an FDA panel studying the problem of obesity, he and his wife owned at least $140,000 in stock in Pepsico, the mammoth snacks and drinks company, and Sysco, a major food distribution company.

October 16, 2006
US Troop Debt Bars Oversea Duty
SAN DIEGO (Oct. 20) - Thousands of U.S. troops are being barred from overseas duty because they are so deep in debt they are considered security risks, according to an Associated Press review of military records.

October 11, 2006
Will Media Finally Count the Dead in Iraq?
From the beginning, the U.S. military refused to count -- and the American media rarely probed -- civilian casualties as the result of our invasion of Iraq in 2003.

"I don't know a single family here that hasn't had a relative, neighbor or friend die violently. In places where there's been all-out fighting going on, I've interviewed parents who buried their dead child in the yard because it was too dangerous to go to the morgue.

October 16, 2006
Medics beg for help as Iraqis die needlessly
But billions went missing because of a combination of criminal activity, corruption, and incompetence, leaving Iraqis without even the essentials for basic medical care.

The violence for which the Allied forces failed to plan has meant a $200m reconstruction project for building 142 primary care centres ran out of cash earlier this year with just 20 on course to be completed, an outcome the World Health Organisation described as "shocking".

October 16, 2006
Iraqi Death Rate May Top Our Civil War
Would it surprise you to learn that if the Johns Hopkins estimates of 400,000 to 800,000 deaths are correct -- and many experts in the survey field seem to suggest they probably are -- that the supposedly not-yet-civil-war in Iraq has already cost more lives, per capita, than our own Civil War (one in 40 of all Iraqis alive in 2003)? And that these losses are comparable to what some European nations suffered in World War II? You'd never know it from mainstream press coverage in the U.S.

October 18, 2006
Poll shows 71 percent disapprove of Congress
WASHINGTON - In an ominous sign for the GOP, a Gallup Poll out Tuesday says the public's approval of Congress remains at lows not seen since 1994 -- when insurgent Republicans kicked Democrats out of power.

The survey found only 23 percent of the country approves of the job the GOP-led Congress is doing, with 71 percent saying they disapprove. In 1994, a Gallup Poll done from Oct. 22 to 25 before the Republican revolution election found the virtually identical anti-incumbent opinion.

October 18, 2006
Homeland Security: GAO Calls Radiation Monitors Unreliable
The Department of Homeland Security's plan to spend $1.2 billion deploying next-generation nuclear-detection equipment at U.S. ports and border crossings cannot be justified, given test results that showed the devices are unreliable, congressional investigators warned yesterday.

October 18, 2006
Kolbe Matter Is Referred to House Ethics Panel
The House committee looking into allegations that former congressman Mark Foley (R-Fla.) had improper contact with male former pages has been asked by lawmakers overseeing the page program to look into allegations involving a second lawmaker, House sources said yesterday.

October 18, 2006
Iraq: Shades of the 1968 Tet Offensive?
Writing in today's New York Times, Friedman suggested that the current violence in Iraq was "the jihadist equivalent of the Tet offensive."

After the Tet offensive began, support for the Vietnam War declined — and so did support for President Johnson.

Two months after the start of the offensive, Johnson announced he would not seek re-election.

October 19, 2006
Soldiers face death penalty
EIGHT soldiers from the US Army 101st division will be court-martialled for murdering Iraqi civilians, and two of the accused face the death penalty for allegedly raping an Iraqi girl and killing her and her family.

October 17, 2006
Gerry Studds' Husband Shut Out of Federal Pension Benefits
But the federal laws have yet to catch up with the laws of Massachusetts, and Studds' death has forced into the open the inequality gay couples face when it comes to marriage benefits. Partnered for 15 years, and married when they were able in 2004, Hara deserves the benefits offered to spouses of other deceased lawmakers, who collect more than half of the pensions earned by their spouses.

October 17, 2006
DNC Takes Out Loan For DSCC
While the DNC doesn't have $10M to just toss around to another campaign committee, the DNC apparently has decided to go into debt to come up with the extra cash DSCC Chair Chuck Schumer has been pleading for from DNC Chair Howard Dean. The actual amount of the loan the DNC is taking out is not known as the committee holds out hope they can raise nearly everything they need before the election. But a line of credit has been opened.

October 16, 2006
Poll: Support for Iraq war at all-time low
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A poll conducted for CNN over the weekend suggests support among Americans for the war in Iraq is dwindling to an all-time low. Just 34 percent of those polled say they support the war, while 64 percent say they oppose it

Another reason why conservatives should never hold office. Our rights don't have to be enumerated.

U.S. Constitution: Ninth Amendment
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

October 17, 2006
Scalia says abortion, 'homosexual sodomy' not protected by constitution
"My job is simply to say if those things you find desirable are contained in the Constitution," he explained. "Nobody ever thought that they were contained in the rights – in the bill of rights. Which is why abortion and homosexual sodomy were criminal for 200 years."

October 13, 2006
America's Dumbest Congressmen

  • Senator Jim Bunning (R-KY)
  • Representative Patrick Kennedy (D-RI)
  • Senator Conrad Burns (R-MT)
  • Representative Cynthia McKinney (D-GA)
  • Representative Jean Schmidt (R-OH)
  • Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA)
  • Representative J.D. Hayworth (R-AZ)
  • Senator James Inhofe (R-OK)
  • Representative Donald Young (R-AK)
  • Representative Katherine Harris (R-FL)

Only 16 members of the Senate voted against Crawford. Apparently, the rest of the Senate thought it was ok for him to be breaking the law because they sure as hell didn't do their jobs and see what was up.

If Democrats want respect they're going to have to work for it. As of now, the Democrat party is as lazy as the Republican party is corrupt.

Needless to say the US media, the White House and Republicans in the Senate are just as bad, if not worse. When did the media think it was their job to roll over and let the GOP appoint corrupt people to congress?

October 17, 2006
Former FDA Chief Charged With Conflict of Interest
Lester M. Crawford, former chief of the Food and Drug Administration, was ' yesterday with conflict of interest and lying about stock he and his wife owned in companies the agency regulates.

Dr. Crawford, who resigned abruptly in September 2005, just two months after his nomination had been approved by the Senate, is expected to plead guilty in federal court in Washington today, said his lawyer, Barbara Van Gelder.

The republican propaganda machine is gearing up for around the clock hate spewed at a new Democrat congress. It's what they do best - hate. Now we wait to see if the media will fall for their lies again. My best guess is yes - they can't help themselves. Conservatives know the US media is lazy and if they provide a narrative the media will push it around the clock.

October 18, 2006
Talk Radio And Talk TV Support For Bush Wavers
Conservative radio hosts are breaking with the Republican leadership in ways not seen in at least a decade, and certainly not since Rush Limbaugh's forceful advocacy of the party in 1994 spawned a new generation of stars, said Michael Harrison, publisher of the industry's lead trade publication, Talkers.

October 18, 2006
Iraq orders US to release Shiite activist
American commanders privately accuse Sadr's Mahdi Army of being one of the main forces behind Iraq's recent descent into sectarian bloodletting, and a rise in the number of fatal attacks on US troops.

Maliki, however, warns it will be difficult to disarm a militia with such popular support and has said that he vetoed a US plan to invade Sadr's stronghold in the impoverished east Baghdad suburb of Sadr City.

October 17, 2006
China Has $1 Trillion of Foreign Currencies - Mostly US Dollar
BEIJING -- Sometime in the next few days, China's holdings of foreign currencies and securities will top $1 trillion -- a sum greater than the annual economic output of all but nine countries. The rapid growth in these so-called foreign-exchange reserves has made Beijing a colossus in the financial world, cushioned against shocks at home, but potentially able to trigger them abroad.

For the U.S., how China deploys its reserves is a question of some consequence. Most of China's currency reserves are invested in U.S.-dollar-denominated debt, such as U.S. Treasurys, which are considered the world's safest investment. That has kept demand for U.S. Treasury notes high -- and interest rates low. A change in that pattern could affect how much Americans pay for mortgage loans and other borrowings.

October 17, 2006
Idaho Sen. Larry Craig Denies Allegations of Same-Sex Affairs
Mike Rogers, who calls himself "the nation's leading gay activist blogger" has just finished a nationally-broadcast interview on the Ed Schultz Radio Show in which he alleges that Idaho Republican Senator Larry Craig has engaged in same-sex sexual activity.

October 18, 2006
America has finally taken on the grim reality of Iraq
The Baker report on an exit strategy from Iraq, leaked this week in the US, is as sensible as it is sensational. It rejects "staying the course" as no longer plausible and purports to seek alternatives to just "cutting and running". Stripped of political sweetening, it concludes that there is none.

The only way Bush can make "missile defense" work is by violating the "Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies."

Article I
The exploration and use of outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interests of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and shall be the province of all mankind.

October 18, 2006
An Impeachable Offense

Bush Moves to Put Arms in Space
The new policy was applauded by defense analyst Baker Spring of the conservative Heritage Foundation. He said that he supported the policy's rejection of international agreements or treaties . . . .

October 17, 2006
Torture USA
The Department of Homeland Security's plan to spend $1.2 billion deploying next-generation nuclear-detection equipment at U.S. ports and border crossings cannot be justified, given test results that showed the devices are unreliable, congressional investigators warned yesterday.

October 17, 2006
Poll: 80% Don't Want Congressional Family Members Congress Lobbying Congress
An overwhelming majority of Americans believe it's wrong for lawmakers and their staffs to have contact with relatives who are lobbyists regarding government matters. But a survey of lawmakers suggests they don't see a problem.

A USA TODAY/Gallup Poll shows that 80% of respondents believe such actions are inappropriate. By contrast, few members of the House and Senate appropriations committees say they have policies that prevent lobbying by relatives.

Note how long it took congress to investigate one of its own. When Bill Clinton was in office they investigated every person he every met and every penny he made. The GOP waited until Cunningham was in jail before the investigated him.

October 18, 2006
Report Spells Out Cunningham Crimes
The investigation found that Mr. Cunningham, a California Republican who is serving an eight-year prison sentence for bribery, repeatedly abused his position on the committee to authorize money for military projects, often over the objections of staff members who criticized some of the spending as wasteful.

October 17, 2006
FBI targets Rep. Weldon in influence-peddling probe
FBI agents raided the homes of Rep. Curt Weldon's daughter and a longtime political friend yesterday as part of an investigation into whether the Pennsylvania Republican used his influence to steer $1 million in foreign business to his lobbyist daughter.

Most liberal blogs and web sites spend countless hours pushing for a Democrat congress. Why? 12 Democrat senators and 32 Democrat house members voted in favor of torture and ending the writ of habeas corpus - they voted to end the constitution as we know it.

While we need Democrats to take control again, we also need to insure that those senators and house members who voted for Bush's agenda never hold positions of power in either chamber.

In the end it comes down to one thing - the more new Democrats elected, the better. Newly elected Democrats can force pro torture Democrats off of committees and deny them chairmanships. If you can donate, give to the new guys, they are our future.

October 17, 2006
Torture USA
Some things are transcendant and timeless, and go to the heart of who are as Americans, whether we honor the legacy of those who came before, and what legacy we leave to those who will follow us.

This is one of those things. This is one of those moments.

In the name of God, what kind of country do they believe we are, that they say George Washington was wrong and George Bush is right on the matter of torture, telling us so casually, so brazenly, so wrongly and so dishonorably that we must act like a fearful and timid people, and do what no previous president or congress or court in the whole history of our land of the free and our home of the brave, has ever allowed be done?

October 17, 2006
Battles brewing on torture
The law bans US agents from inflicting severe physical or mental pain and using torture during interrogations. But it gives the White House wide latitude to define what constitutes torture and "cruel treatment" under the Geneva Conventions, and it effectively grants legal amnesty to White House officials who authorized harsh techniques in the past to protect CIA agents who have reportedly used mock drownings, sleep deprivation, and hypothermia during interrogations.

October 17, 2006
An Impeachable Offense

Bush signs torture bill; Americans lose essential freedom
Reuters: The law also "establishes military tribunals that would allow some use of evidence obtained by coercion [that is, torture], but would give defendants access to classified evidence being used to convict them.

I've been ashamed to be an American only once before - when Bush took us to war for no reason. Now I'm ashamed for my country again. Not only has the congress disavowed the Geneva Conventions but they're eliminated the writ of habeas corpus - and suspended the Constitution. An Impeachable Offense. The Supreme Court has already ruled in favor of the Geneva Conventions - they must be followed.

Members of congress who voted to destroy the Constitution must be eliminated as soon as possible. Their names are listed at the top of this page.

October 18, 2006
An Impeachable Offense

Habeas Corpus Ends: No Prisoner May Invoke the Geneva Conventions
Prisoners whom the president has decided can be held indefinitely have other problems, too. Although Bush boasted Tuesday that "this bill complies with both the spirit and the letter of our international obligations," the Military Commissions Act states flatly, "no alien unlawful enemy combatant . . . may invoke the Geneva Conventions as a source of rights."

October 11, 2006
The death of habeas corpus and the Bill of Rights
Keith Olbermann: The reality is without habeas corpus, a lot of other rights lose their meaning. But if you look at the actual Bill of Rights, the first 10 amendments of that pesky Constitution, you'll see just how many remain for your protection.

OK, No. 1 is gone. I mean, if you're detained without trial, you lose your freedom of religion and speech, press, assembly, all the rest of that. So, you don't need that any more.

Sen. McConnell is your typical republican senator. He doesn't believe in anything and he sells his vote to the highest bidder. They used to call it bribery. I don't know what they call it now.

October 15, 2006
Sen. McConnell: Power Whore
McConnell's rise to the top of Congress is testament to the power of money in modern politics. He has raised nearly $220 million over his Senate career; he spent the majority not on his own campaigns but on those of his GOP colleagues, who have rewarded him with power.

October 13, 2006
Prominent Republicans Want the GOP to Lose
But prominent Republicans have, indeed, gone on record as wanting the GOP to lose next month (albeit for varied reasons) in an article appearing in the current issue of the Washington Monthly.

The article, entitled "It's Time For Us to Go," offers variations on this theme from Christopher Buckley, Bruce Bartlett, Joe Scarborough, William A. Niskanen, Bruce Fein, Jeffrey Hart and Richard A. Viguerie.

October 14, 2006
Pagan Graves in Vatican Basement!
Oct. 13, 2006 - Just inside the Vatican's fortified walls, directly below the street connecting its private pharmacy and its members-only supermarket, lies a 2,000-year-old graveyard littered with bizarre, often disturbing displays of pagan worship. Under one metallic walkway, the headless skeleton of a young boy rests in an open grave. At his side, a marble replica of a hen's egg, which to pagans represented the rebirth of the body through reincarnation. Nearby, countless skeletons lie scattered among the remnants of terra cotta vases used in pagan ceremonies. The underground air is damp with the smell of wet dirt, and the clay tubes used by the pagans to feed their dead with honey and syrup still protrude, fingerlike, from the ground.

It sounding more and more like an excuse to go to war than a justification. If he'd only told the truth we wouldn't be talking about this mess.

October 16, 2006
Bush keeps revising war justification
Initially, the rationale was specific: to stop Saddam Hussein from using what Bush claimed were the Iraqi leader's weapons of mass destruction or from selling them to al-Qaida or other terrorist groups.

But 3 1/2 years later, with no weapons found, still no end in sight and the war a liability for nearly all Republicans on the ballot Nov. 7, the justification has become far broader and now includes the expansive "struggle between good and evil."

October 15, 2006
Britain forced to hire civilian helicopters
Britain is so short of helicopters in Afghanistan that military chiefs are being forced to scour the world for civilian aircraft to support its troops after the US rejected a plea to help plug the shortfall.

The White House, the Senate and the House are sold to the highest bidder. Our founding fathers would be appalled by what the GOP has done to our government.

October 15, 2006
E-mails show Jack Abramoff's ability to influence White House staffing decisions
WASHINGTON — For five years, Allen Stayman wondered who ordered his removal from a State Department job negotiating agreements with tiny Pacific island nations — even when his own bosses wanted him to stay.

Now he knows.

Newly disclosed e-mails suggest that the ax fell after intervention by one of the highest officials at the White House: Ken Mehlman, on behalf of one of the most influential lobbyists in town, Jack Abramoff.

October 16, 2006
How general's bomb hit home
Downing Street went into damage-limitation overdrive. Sir Richard was staying overnight on the English south coast, and copies of the article were faxed to him. In a tense midnight conversation with Defence Secretary Des Browne, the general said he had intended to defend the army, not to open a rift with the Blair Labour Government.

October 15, 2006
Congressional scholars: The Broken Branch
Two of the most knowledgeable congressional scholars are Thomas Mann of the Brookings Institution and Norman Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute. Their new book is "The Broken Branch: How Congress Is Failing America and How to Get It Back on Track." They recently answered questions about their findings and views.

October 2, 2006
Bush's mid-term meltdown
LAST December, Democratic congressman John Conyers issued a press release citing President George W. Bush for possible impeachable offences relating to his administration's conduct of the Iraq war.

Few took the missive that seriously and it received little attention. But in a little more than three weeks Conyers, who serves as the most senior Democrat on the House of Representatives judiciary committee, could be the leader of that committee if the Democrats win back the house after the mid-term elections on November 7.

October 2, 2006
The 'right' way to win on the issues
As Republicans have long recognized, the attitudes of the general public on any given topic are irrelevant. Instead, they focus on the distribution of opinion among those who feel passionately about a particular issue, allowing the GOP to shore up votes from conservatives without worrying about a broader backlash.

Not to worry, the GOP never looks at the facts - they just make it up. Their base is all too willing to obey what the party preaches. Was the GOP right about global warming, tax cuts, deficits, paying down the debt, war in Iraq, Whitewater, terrorism?

October 13, 2006
Nobel Economists: Republicans Wrong on Minimum Wage
With the buying power of the Federal minimum wage at its lowest point in 55 years, five Nobel Prize-winning economists have been joined by 650 of their peers, in calling on the Republican-led Congress to increase the minimum wage. Describing the last increase almost 10 years ago as now "fully eroded," the economists said that they agree with a report written in 1999 by the Council of Economic Advisors declaring that "modest increases in the minimum wage have had very little or no effect on employment."

All the GOP has to do is stop lying. Stop lying about balanced budgets, tax cuts, threats to our national security and threats to marriage. It's that simple. If their base can't deal with reality - tough!

October 14, 2006
Is a Gay Republican Purge Coming?
s speculation mounted about a coming gay GOP purge, a reporter from the St. Petersburg Times called Focus on the Family to ask its founder and chairman, James Dobson, about the issue. Dobson responded with an angry tirade. After denouncing Media Matters and this website, the Huffington Post, for publicizing his dismissal of Foley's explicit instant messages to male teenage pages as "sort of a joke," Dobson exclaimed, "She [the reporter] said, 'I heard late yesterday that Dr. Dobson had asked House leadership to fire all gay staffers. That's crazy too. That, first of all, would be flat-out illegal. You can't fire people just because somebody says so, and they're certainly not going to do it because James Dobson says so. That's crazy! They're trying to make us look like extremists and people who do ridiculous things, and there's absolutely no basis in this."

Let's be honest. The GOP says they're for a lot of things and then they turn around and do the opposite. They say they're fiscal conservatives and then they create mountains of debt. They say they hate gays but then cover up the crimes of a gay congressman. The GOP will do anything to get and maintain power. It believes in nothing - never has and never will.

October 13, 2006
Concerns Over Gay Issues Challenge GOP
Oct. 13, 2006 — Arguments among Christian conservatives — primarily that many of the gay men caught up in the Mark Foley scandal prove that Republicans have been too tolerant — threaten to tear the party apart.

Who'd have thought. The GOP won't allow gays to get married but they refer to the parent of a gay spouse as "mother-in-law." Does this make sense?

October 15, 2006
The Gay Old Party Comes Out
Here's a gay Republican story you probably did not hear last week. On Tuesday a card-carrying homosexual, Mark Dybul, was sworn into office at the State Department with his partner holding the Bible. Dr. Dybul, the administration's new global AIDS coordinator, was flanked by Laura Bush and Condi Rice. In her official remarks, the secretary of state referred to the mother of Dr. Dybul's partner as his "mother-in-law."

Americans get it. It's too bad the media is still so far behind the rest of us.

October 14, 2006
Poll: 16% say Bush is telling the truth about 9/11
Only 16 per cent of respondents say the government headed by U.S. president George W. Bush is telling the truth on what it knew prior to the terrorist attacks, down five points since May 2002.

October 15, 2006
Bring Back the Taliban
Five years after the United States launched the war in Afghanistan to oust the Taliban from power, some U.S. political leaders and military commanders are saying that the only way to prevent chaos and violence from overwhelming the country is to co-opt the resurgent Islamic militia into the country's political system.

From Gen. David Richards, the NATO commander in Afghanistan, to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., they are stepping up calls for a political approach to suppressing the insurgency.

October 13, 2006

UN: 40,000 people flee Iraq every month
GENEVA (AFP) -Iraq is suffering from a "steady, silent exodus" of more than 40,000 people a month fleeing violence and the flow of refugees towards Europe is growing, the UN refugee agency has said.

Asylum claims by Iraqis in mainly European industralised countries in the first six months of the year grew by more than 50 percent compared to the first half of 2005 to reach 8,100, Ron Redmond, a spokesman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said Friday.

October 13, 2006
Charlie Cook's National Overview - Category 5 Hurricane Heads for House GOP
That said, this is without question the worst political situation for the GOP since the Watergate disaster in 1974.  I think a 30-seat gain today for Democrats is more likely to occur than a 15-seat gain, the minimum that would tip the majority. The chances of that number going higher are also strong, unless something occurs that fundamentally changes the dynamic of this election.  This is what Republican strategists' nightmares look like.

Whether one looks at national or district-level polling data, or a survey like the new Democracy Corps survey that covered the 49 most vulnerable GOP districts, the conclusion remains the same: it is very ugly for Republicans.

It's easy to see why Democrats vote for Bush's agenda. He buys them off. In the mean time, the deficit and debt soar. In fiscal year 2006 we spent $405 billion to finance our debt. Passing a republican agenda has already cost us nearly $3 trillion in new debt.

October 15, 2006
Farm Aid or Welfare?
But shortly after passing the Agricultural Risk Protection Act, Congress lost its fiscal will. One week before the presidential election, it passed a new $1.8 billion disaster bill to assist farmers hurt by bad weather. Two others followed in subsequent years, totaling more than $6 billion. Today, after a searing drought in the Plains, farm-state legislators are pushing for billions more in aid.

Why does Afghanistan have 10-foot-high marijuana plants? Because the Bush White House doesn't care about the war on drugs.

October 2, 2006
Troops battle 10-foot marijuana plants
OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian troops fighting Taliban militants in Afghanistan have stumbled across an unexpected and potent enemy -- almost impenetrable forests of 10-feet-high marijuana plants.

October 15, 2006
Bush 43 makes Bush 41 look better
In fact, the 41s suggest a singular irony: the unpopularity of the son's administration may be rehabilitating the father's.

"By comparison, the old man looks better and better," a senior 41 hand said, with undisguised satisfaction.

October 2, 2006
Who Will Pay the US Debt
When George W. Bush became president in 2001, the United States' public debt was 5.8 trillion dollars. Today the public debt stands at 8.3 trillion dollars. [1] Of this over amount, $2.2 trillion dollars is held by foreigners. [2] United States has a GDP of 12.4 trillion dollars. This gives U.S. a Debt/GDP ratio of 66%, placing it in 35th place (out of 113) on the ranking of the Debtor Nations. [3] The current account deficit of over 7 per cent has long passed its danger levels of 4-5 per cent. In 2005, the U.S. government paid $325 billion dollars in interest payments.

October 13, 2006
Feds probe trip that Kolbe made with pages
WASHINGTON - Federal prosecutors in Arizona have opened a preliminary investigation of a camping trip Congressman Jim Kolbe, R-Ariz., took 10 years ago that included two teenage congressional pages, a Justice Department spokesman told NBC News. NBC News first reported on the camping and rafting trip on Tuesday.

October 13, 2006
FBI investigates Rep. Curt Weldon
The FBI, which opened an investigation in recent months, has formally referred the matter to the department's Public Integrity Section for additional scrutiny. At issue are Weldon's efforts between 2002 and 2004 to aid two Russian companies and two Serbian brothers with ties to strongman Slobodan Milosevic, a federal law enforcement official said.

October 12, 2006
White House Shunned Foley in 2004. What did they know and when did they know it?
"Tomorrow Potus is in Martin County and I am told I am not allowed to be there either. I can't quite figure what I have done but this is a continuing pattern of slights ... I have constantly put the President in the best possible light on everything from haiti to hurricanes ... sorry to trouble you ... and I wouldn't if this wasn't so frequent ..."

October 14, 2006
Medicare Drug Premiums Will Rise 13% in 2007
WASHINGTON — Two weeks after the Bush administration announced that Medicare prescription premiums would stay about the same next year, a new analysis by congressional Democrats indicates that for a majority of middle-class seniors, rates will jump 13% — well above the overall inflation rate.

October 14, 2006
Ohio Republican Pleads Guilty in Bribery Case
WASHINGTON — Rep. Bob Ney (R-Ohio) pleaded guilty Friday to bribery charges stemming from the Jack Abramoff influence-peddling investigation, becoming the first sitting congressman to confess to taking bribes in the scandal that continues to reverberate through the Republican-controlled Congress.

October 14, 2006
Charges of abuse at Gitmo probed
The Pentagon's inspector general's office told the Associated Press that it had ordered the Miami-based Southern Command to investigate after Marine Lt. Col. Colby Vokey, who represents a detainee at the U.S. naval base in eastern Cuba, filed a "hotline" complaint last week.

October 11, 2006
Pollster Zogby '95 percent' sure of 650,000 Iraqi death toll
Expert pollster John Zogby is "95 percent certain" that around 650,000 Iraqis civilians have died since the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. A new study by Iraqi physicians and Americans from Johns Hopkins University polled 1,800 Iraqis to calculate an approximate number of casualties since the beginning of the war.

In an interview on CNN International, Zogby explains that the methodology used in the study is very reliable. "The methodology, from what I've seen of the survey, is quite good," he remarked. He is also in agreement with the study's estimate of 650,000 casualties, saying, "I can't vouch for it 100 percent, but I'll vouch for it 95 percent, which is as good as it gets in survey research."

October 10, 2006

The United States has ceded the moral high ground to its enemies
It doesn't matter how much food aid we ship to the victims of the next global natural disaster, or how diplomatic our next president is, or whether we come to regret what we have done in the name of law and order. Our laws permit kidnapping, torture and murder. Our laws deny access to the courts. The United States has ceded the moral high ground to its enemies.

October 12, 2006
Iraqi Children Hate the US
"Americans are bad," said 11-year-old Mustafa. "They killed my family." The family were killed in Operation Phantom Fury of November 2004 as they tried to flee the city, teachers said. That operation killed thousands and destroyed much of Fallujah and towns around it.

"God will send all Americans to hellfire," cried another child in the classroom. Attempts to suggest that not everyone they thought American was bad proved fruitless.

October 11, 2006
Five conservative nonprofits sold clout to Abramoff
WASHINGTON — Five conservative nonprofit organizations, including one run by prominent Republican Grover Norquist, "perpetrated a fraud" on taxpayers by selling their clout to lobbyist Jack Abramoff, Senate investigators said in a report issued Thursday.

October 13, 2006
Global Warming Will Cost Trillions
Failure to take action to combat climate change will cause environmental catastrophe and cost the global economy $20 trillion (£10.8 trillion) a year by the end of the century, the pressure group Friends of the Earth says today.

October 13, 2006
Georgia Ignores Court Ruling: Sends Voter ID Letters
Less than a week after a judge struck down Georgia's photo ID requirement for voters because it violated the state Constitution, nearly 200,000 letters were sent out to registered voters, notifying them they may not have a valid driver's license or state-issued photo ID.

October 13, 2006
Death Toll of Iraqis Exceeds 600,000
GENEVA (AFP) -Iraq is suffering from a "steady, silent exodus" of more than 40,000 people a month fleeing violence and the flow of refugees towards Europe is growing, the UN refugee agency has said.

Iraqis are now the largest single national group seeking asylum in European countries, he told journalists.

CNN fired the head of its news division- Eason Jordan when he said the US targeted journalists. He told the truth and he was fired. At CNN, news is only news AFTER the government approves it.
Additional resources:
Attack of the Blogs
Lapdogs

October 14, 2006
An Impeachable Offense - another military coverup

British journalist 'unlawfully killed' by US forces
US forces unlawfully killed a British television journalist in the opening days of the Iraq war, a coroner ruled on Friday.

Deputy Coroner Andrew Walker said he would ask the attorney-general to take steps to bring to justice those responsible for the death of Terry Lloyd, 50, a veteran reporter for the British television network ITN.

October 11, 2006
U.K. General Wants Forces to Leave Iraq Soon
Oct. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Britain's armed forces are in danger of exhaustion and should aim to leave Iraq "in a year or two or three," Chief of the General Staff General Richard Dannatt said, shedding light on the timetable for a withdraw.

October 13, 2006
Soldiers salute General's pullout comments on web forum
The call from General Sir Richard Dannatt that British forces should leave Iraq "sometime soon" has met with overwhelming support on the unofficial Army Rumour Service website, which includes forums where officers can air their views anonymously.

October 12, 2006
Baker's Panel Rules Out Iraq Victory
Currently, the 10-member commission — headed by a secretary of state for President George H.W. Bush, James Baker — is considering two option papers, "Stability First" and "Redeploy and Contain," both of which rule out any prospect of making Iraq a stable democracy in the near term.

October 13, 2006
GOP Redirects Funds From Faltering Races
"We're seeing relatively safe House districts with candidates up on the air five weeks out," said Evan Tracey, chief operating officer of TNSMI/CMAG. "They would have been on two to three weeks out at the earliest in past elections. . . . No one is safe."

October 13, 2006
Bush Aides Dismissed Christian Allies As Nuts
WASHINGTON, Oct. 12 — A former deputy director of the White House office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives is charging that many members of the Bush administration privately dismiss its conservative Christian allies as "boorish" and "nuts."

The former deputy director, David Kuo, an evangelical Christian conservative, makes the accusations in a newly published memoir, "Tempting Faith: An Inside Story of Political Seduction" (Free Press), about his frustration with what he described as the meager support and political exploitation of the program.

October 11, 2006
Death Toll of Iraqis Exceeds 600,000
Oct. 11 (Bloomberg) -- About 600,000 people have died violent deaths in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion of the country in March 2003, researchers found in a new study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore and Al Mustansiriya University in Baghdad.

October 9, 2006
Congressman Kolbe Saw Email in 2000
A Republican congressman knew of disgraced former representative Mark Foley's inappropriate Internet exchanges as far back as 2000 and personally confronted Foley about his communications.

In Iraq the enemy uses poison. In the US, corporations poison us (read the next article for more)

October 9, 2006
Hundreds of Iraqi police poisoned
BAGHDAD - Hundreds of Iraqi policemen fell sick from poisoning Sunday at a base in southern Iraq after the evening meal breaking their daily Ramadan fast, and officials said they were investigating whether the poisoning was intentional.

When republicans are forced to choose between record corporate profits and safety, they chose profits. These profits fund their campaigns

October 7, 2006
U.S. Rules Allow the Sale of Products Others Ban
The European Union, driven by consumers' concerns, has banned or heavily restricted hundreds of toxic substances in recent years, invoking its "precautionary principle," which is codified into law and prescribes that protective steps should be taken when there is scientific evidence of risks to public health or the environment.

Some toys, nail polishes and other beauty products are made with plastic softeners and solvents called phthalates that the EU has banned as reproductive toxins. Several of U.S. agriculture's most popular herbicides and insecticides, including atrazine, endosulfan and aldicarb, are illegal or restricted to emergency uses in other countries. And a few electronic items, including Palm's Treo 650 smart phone and Apple's iSight camera, were pulled off shelves in Europe this summer because of lead components but are still sold here.

October 7, 2006
Big government grows
Roll all of those together - and mix in the numbers of postal workers and military personnel on the federal payroll - and the "true size" of the federal government stands at 14.6 million employees, said Paul Light, the study's author and a government professor at New York University.

That compares with 12.1 million employees in 2002.