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Impeach Bush--Index 61

It seems self-evident that Bush and Cheney felt guilty for missing the obvious signs before 911 so in a fit of guilt and madness they seemed to have given themselves power to break our laws and then justify this lawlessness because of their previous failures. Clearly, none of these extraordinary abuses of power would have been necessary if Bush and Cheney had done their jobs BEFORE 911. Bush, Cheney and Gonzales should be impeached, removed from office and forbidden from holding positions of honor within our government.

An Impeachable Offense
July 2-9, 2007 issue

Gonzales Ignored Request for Legal Opinion by the National Archives

Cheney's position so frustrated J. William Leonard, the chief of the Archives' Information Security Oversight Office, which enforces the order, that he complained in January to Gonzales. In a letter, Leonard wrote that Cheney's position was inconsistent with the "plain text reading" of the executive order and asked the attorney general for an official ruling. But Gonzales never responded, thereby permitting Cheney to continue blocking Leonard from conducting even a routine inspection of how the veep's office was handling classified documents, according to correspondence released by House Government Reform Committee chair Rep. Henry Waxman.

Experts within the government knew they were violating the Constitution and the Geneva Conventions and they didn't care. Here we are years later and the war on terror has become such a weak supposition that we've spent years fighting in Iraq instead of years fighting so-called terrorists. The courts sat idly by while Bush/Cheney decimated the Constitution. The pro war, pro torture pundits supported these gross violations.

An Impeachable Offense
June 25, 2007

The Undoing of the Geneva Conventions

The meeting marked "the first time that the issue of interrogations comes up" among top-ranking White House officials, recalled John C. Yoo, who represented the Justice Department. "The CIA guys said, 'We're going to have some real difficulties getting actionable intelligence from detainees'" if interrogators confined themselves to treatment allowed by the Geneva Conventions.

The vice president's unseen victories attest to traits that are often ascribed to him but are hard to demonstrate from the public record: thoroughgoing secrecy, persistence of focus, tactical flexibility in service of fixed aims and close knowledge of the power map of government. On critical decisions for more than six years, Cheney has often controlled the pivot points -- tipping the outcome when he could, engineering stalemate when he could not and reopening debates that rivals thought were resolved.

We have a lot of impeachable offenses to deal with this week so here's a sample of what's going on.

June 25, 2007

Calling Cheney's Bluff: Defunding the Office of the Vice President

Illinois Congressman Rahm Emanuel has come up with the right response to Dick Cheney's attempt to suggest that the Office of the Vice President is not part of the executive branch.

The House Democratic Caucus chairman wants to take the Cheney at his word. Cheney says his office is "not an entity within the executive branch," so Emanuel wants to take away the tens of millions of dollars that are allocated to the White House to maintain it.

I'm looking at what the courts did to "protect us" from Bush. The judge in this articles says he did nothing except give them advice on how to protect their backsides. Where are our leaders? Where are the men of character and integrity? Where are the judges who swear to protect the constitution from all enemies?

An Impeachable Offense
June 24, 2007

Ex-Surveillance Judge Criticizes Warrantless Taps

A federal judge who used to authorize wiretaps in terrorism and espionage cases criticized yesterday President Bush's decision to order warrantless surveillance after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

"We have to understand you can fight the war [on terrorism] and lose everything if you have no civil liberties left when you get through fighting the war," said Royce C. Lamberth, a U.S. District Court judge in Washington and a former presiding judge of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, speaking at the American Library Association's annual convention.

So the guys who mishandle intelligence were afraid someone else would catch them so that's why they didn't want anyone else watching them?

If the Congress wanted Bush or the Cheney exempted from the law they would have wrote it into the law. Does it get any simpler than this? Impeach these pricks.

An Impeachable Offense
June 23, 2007

Bush claims oversight exemption too

WASHINGTON — The White House said Friday that, like Vice President Dick Cheney's office, President Bush's office is not allowing an independent federal watchdog to oversee its handling of classified national security information.

An executive order that Bush issued in March 2003 — amending an existing order — requires all government agencies that are part of the executive branch to submit to oversight. Although it doesn't specifically say so, Bush's order was not meant to apply to the vice president's office or the president's office, a White House spokesman said.

So the US Supreme Court knows the Bush White House is breaking our laws. What will it do...roll over as it has in the past or actually order Bush to follow the law?

An Impeachable Offense
June 22, 2007

Army officer says Gitmo panels flawed

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — An Army officer who played a key role in the "enemy combatant" hearings at Guantanamo Bay says tribunal members relied on vague and incomplete intelligence while being pressured to rule against detainees, often without any specific evidence.

His affidavit, submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court and released Friday, is the first criticism by a member of the military panels that determine whether detainees will continue to be held.

June 22, 2007

Bush Pick for No. 3 at Justice Withdraws

WASHINGTON - President Bush's pick to be the No. 3 official in the Justice Department asked to have his nomination withdrawn Friday, four days before he was to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Bill Mercer sent a letter to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales saying it was unlikely that the Senate would confirm him as associate attorney general, a post he has held on an interim basis since September. He plans to leave Washington and turn his full attention to his work as U.S. attorney for Montana.

Long after the "war on terror" is exposed as a bigger farce than the war in Iraq the Court will have to explain why it failed to defend us from the Bush presidency.

An Impeachable Offense
June 23, 2007

White House Defends Cheney's Refusal of Oversight

The White House defended Vice President Cheney yesterday in a dispute over his office's refusal to comply with an executive order regulating the handling of classified information as Democrats and other critics assailed him for disregarding rules that others follow.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said Cheney is not obligated to submit to oversight by an office that safeguards classified information, as other members and parts of the executive branch are. Cheney's office has contended that it does not have to comply because the vice president serves as president of the Senate, which means that his office is not an "entity within the executive branch."

Powell had a legal responsibility to inform Congress that Bush and Cheney were violating US laws, the Geneva Conventions and the War Crimes Act (all impeachable offenses). Instead he did nothing; much like the courts, the congress and the media. Where have all our leaders gone? The courts may eventually begin the process of undoing what Bush and Cheney did but it'll be long after they leave office. One thing is certain; if we had a Democrat president the Court would have put up every obstacle it could come up with.

An Impeachable Offense
June 24, 2007

Bush/Cheney Conspired to Strip POWs of Rights

In less than an hour, the document traversed a West Wing circuit that gave its words the power of command. It changed hands four times, according to witnesses, with emphatic instructions to bypass staff review. When it returned to the Oval Office, in a blue portfolio embossed with the presidential seal, Bush pulled a felt-tip pen from his pocket and signed without sitting down. Almost no one else had seen the text.

Cheney's proposal had become a military order from the commander in chief. Foreign terrorism suspects held by the United States were stripped of access to any court -- civilian or military, domestic or foreign. They could be confined indefinitely without charges and would be tried, if at all, in closed "military commissions."

"What the hell just happened?" Secretary of State Colin L. Powell demanded, a witness said, when CNN announced the order that evening, Nov. 13, 2001. National security adviser Condoleezza Rice, incensed, sent an aide to find out. Even witnesses to the Oval Office signing said they did not know the vice president had played any part.

The way he did it -- adhering steadfastly to principle, freezing out dissent and discounting the risks of blow-back -- turned tactical victory into strategic defeat. By late last year, the Supreme Court had dealt three consecutive rebuffs to his claim of nearly unchecked authority for the commander in chief, setting precedents that will bind Bush's successors.

Rule #1, torture POWs in the US. When Rule #1 is discovered apply rule #2. Rule #2, torture POWs in other countries (especially the EU). When the courts learn of this torture and ban it apply rule #3. Rule #3. Move POWs to Guantanamo Bay and torture them. When the public become outraged apply rule #4. Rule #4, move POWs to Afghanistan and torture them to your hearts content. During all these gross violations of Geneva Conventions, the War Crimes Act and US law where is the US Supreme Court? They're taking cases on jesus bongs and faith based religious programs.

Personally, I'd support putting bunnies in robes and letting them make decision vital to protecting our way of life. At least then we wouldn't have to pretend they have sapience.

An Impeachable Offense
June 22, 2007

U.S. May Move POWs To Afghan Prison

(CBS/AP) The United States is helping build a prison in Afghanistan to take some prisoners now at Guantanamo Bay, but the White House said Friday that it's not meant as an alternative to the detainee facility in Cuba.

The news comes the same day as the release of an affidavit by an Army lawyer criticizing the evidence used by military tribunals to determine whether detainees will continue to be held.

The Bush administration has said it wants to close Guantanamo Bay and move terror suspects to prisons elsewhere. Senior officials have told The Associated Press a consensus is building among the president's top advisers on how to do it.

The new republican credo should be something like this; "when it doesn't work, spend more money on it." Tax cuts didn't result in balanced budgets but they kept on cutting taxes. Abstinence program don't work, but they don't care because they think they do. Now it looks like voucher programs don't work either. Give them points for increasing the size of government while claiming to be fiscal conservatives. At least they're good at something - lying.

June 22, 2007

Voucher Students Show Few Gains in First Year

Students in the D.C. school voucher program, the first federal initiative to spend taxpayer dollars on private school tuition, generally performed no better on reading and math tests after one year in the program than their peers in public schools, the U.S. Education Department said yesterday.

The department's report, which researchers said is an early snapshot, found only a few exceptions to the conclusion that the program has not yet had a significant impact on achievement: Students who moved from higher-performing public schools to private schools and those who scored well on tests before entering the program performed better in math than their peers who stayed in public school.

If you're in Washington DC in the near future see what you can do to wake the jack-asses on the Supreme Court. The Constitution (like the reputation of the US) lay in ruin.

An Impeachable Offense
June 22, 2007

Cheney claims a non-executive privilege

WASHINGTON — For the last four years, Vice President Dick Cheney has made the controversial claim that his office is not fully part of the Bush administration in order to exempt it from a presidential order regulating federal agencies' handling of classified national security information, officials said Thursday.

Cheney has held that his office is not fully part of the executive branch of government despite the continued objections of the National Archives, which says his office's failure to demonstrate that it has proper security safeguards in place could jeopardize the government's top secrets.

The law is the law.

Have you noticed an increase need for this White House to explain why it can break the law and have you also noticed the Supreme Court doing nothing about it? Passing new laws doesn't work because they'll just break them, so where in the hell is the Court?

An Impeachable Offense
June 22, 2007

Cheney Fighting National Archives: the Information Security Oversight Office Since 2003

California Representative Henry Waxman released documents Thursday that revealed Cheney's office has not filed annual reports with a unit of the National Archives, the Information Security Oversight Office, since 2003. The unit is required to monitor how the executive branch of the government handles classified documents, under an order first signed in 1995 by then President Bill Clinton.

Cheney's advisors say his office is not covered under the order, arguing that the vice president's office is not strictly an executive agency.

June 19, 2007

GALLUP: 7 in 10 Americans Say Economy Is 'Getting Worse'

NEW YORK A new Gallup Poll will only reinforce those who claim that while the rich get richer most Americans don't feel they are sharing in the growth in our economy. The stock market may be climbing and the unemployment remains relatively low, but 7 in 10 Americans believe the economy is getting worse -- the most negative reading in nearly six years.

Only one in three Americans rate the economy today as either excellent or good, while the percentage saying the economy is getting better fell from 28% to 23% in one month.

Clearly the "war on terror" has to now be consider as ill conceived as the war in Iraq. If our federal buildings were threatened by terrorists NO ONE would be talking about cutting funding. The "fact" that Bush is asking for funding cuts adds an additional piece of proof to the supposition that the "war on terror" is a joke.

June 21, 2007

Bush Cuts Funding for Federal Security Unit

The police agency, the Federal Protective Service, employs about 15,000 contract security guards at government buildings nationwide. It has been under fire for its performance in the Washington region, where a report last year found that 30 percent of the service's guards analyzed had expired certifications.

In addition, security guards threatened to walk off their jobs at some D.C. area government facilities this month after they hadn't been paid by their contractor. The Protective Service had hired the contractor without realizing that it was run by a felon and his wife, according to interviews. The incident is the subject of a hearing on Capitol Hill today.

It found that 30 percent of the guards in the D.C. area whose records were reviewed had expired certifications, including background checks due every two years. One guard had a felony assault conviction but was still on the job seven months after the Protective Service found out.

Only a dozen service employees were checking the credentials and performances of the 5,700 guards in the D.C. area -- "an inadequate number," said the audit, conducted by the Homeland Security inspector general's office.

Under the Geneva Conventions an occupying power is responsible for security. We destroyed their government and we're occupying their country. We have a legal obligation to keep them safe and we have failed. Excuses don't work...the law is the law.

An Impeachable Offense
June 20, 2007

Iraqi Labor Leaders Blame US for the Bloodshed in Iraq and say Get Out!

The two Iraqi labor leaders, currently in Philadelphia as part of a U.S. tour sponsored by a coalition of American labor unions called U.S. Labor Against the War, say the U.S. is the cause of all the violence in Iraq, and argue that the sooner U.S. forces leave their country, the sooner things will start to get better.

"Did the occupier find us fighting each other when they came to Iraq?" asks Hashmeya, who is president of the Electric Utility Workers Union of Iraq. "No. The fighting among Iraqis started two and a half years after the Americans came."

After 911 the congress gave Bush whatever he wanted. He could have easily changed the NSA law using the legal authority provided by law created by Congress. Instead, he chose to break the law.

An Impeachable Offense
June 26, 2007

NSA Spying Program, Uncovering The Truth

The Senate Judiciary Committee has voted to authorize subpoenas related to the National Security Agency (NSA)'s domestic spying program, setting the stage for a Congressional showdown over the surveillance of millions of ordinary Americans. The subpoenas demand certain legal documents that the Administration has withheld despite Congress' repeated requests.

"This subpoena authorization is a critical first step toward uncovering the full extent of the NSA's illegal spying and the role that telecommunications companies like AT&T played in it," said EFF Staff Attorney Kevin Bankston. "Considering that it's been almost six years since the NSA started spying on Americans without warrants and over a year since that spying was revealed publicly, these subpoenas are long overdue. It's high time for Congress to get to the bottom of this mess."

June 21, 2007

Poll: Bush approval 26%

Only 26 percent of Americans, just over one in four, approve of the job the 43rd president is doing; while, a record 65 percent disapprove, including nearly a third of Republicans.

But the 26 percent rating puts Bush lower than Jimmy Carter, who sunk to his nadir of 28 percent in a Gallup poll in June 1979. In fact, the only president in the last 35 years to score lower than Bush is Richard Nixon. Nixon's approval rating tumbled to 23 percent in January 1974, seven months before his resignation over the botched Watergate break-in.

The military is now accepting criminals and grandpas. It's also forcing amputees to return to duty. Who's next, the mentally ill?

June 21, 2007

Army misses recruitment target for first time in 8 months

The US Army failed to meet its monthly recruitment goal in May for the first time in eight months, the Defense Department announced.

The Army gained 5,101 recruits in May, about 7 percent short of its goal of 5,500, the department said yesterday.

The Army last year paid $1.09 billion in bonuses, a three fold increase from 2002, according to Army data.

It also increased its maximum age to 42 from 35 and is taking more recruits with lower aptitude test scores or criminal backgrounds.

Now that centrists and conservatives within the Democratic Party see their vote for more war funding has turned the nation against their party too, what will they do now? It's highly likely they'll do what they've always done...repeat the same mistakes and blame Iraqis for the mistakes they made when they supported a war that was based entirely on known lies.

Readers are asked to recall that the CIA said Saddam wouldn't use his weapons of mass destruction (assuming he had any) unless the US first attacked him. So what did the US do? We attacked him.

Every person who supported the war (in congress and the media) is a bumbling idiot. The CIA said there was no threat, period.

June 21, 2007

Americans' Confidence in Congress at All-Time Low

GALLUP NEWS SERVICE

PRINCETON, NJ -- The percentage of Americans with a "great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in Congress is at 14%, the lowest in Gallup's history of this measure -- and the lowest of any of the 16 institutions tested in this year's Confidence in Institutions survey. It is also one of the lowest confidence ratings for any institution tested over the last three decades.

Gallup's annual update on Americans' confidence in institutions shows that confidence ratings are generally down across the board compared with last year. The public's confidence ratings in several institutions, including Congress, are now at all-time low points in Gallup's history of this measure. These low ratings reflect the generally sour mood of the public at this time.

Of the 16 societal institutions tested in Gallup's 2007 update, Americans express the most confidence in the military. They have the least confidence in HMOs and Congress. Americans have much more confidence in "small" business than in "big" business.

This article is exceptionally long but it's well worth the read. If you only have time to read one article, read this one.

It's now clear Bush, his senior military commanders and Rumsfeld were aware of torture at Abu Ghraib long before CBS broke the story. Collectively they lied to Congress and the American people. Each person still working for the US government who knew about the torture and did nothing to stop and/or lied about it should be impeached (including all military officers) if it's legally possible to impeach someone in the military.

An Impeachable Offense
June 25, 2007

How Antonio Taguba, who investigated the Abu Ghraib scandal, became one of its casualties

In the meeting, the officials professed ignorance about Abu Ghraib. "Could you tell us what happened?" Wolfowitz asked. Someone else asked, "Is it abuse or torture?" At that point, Taguba recalled, "I described a naked detainee lying on the wet floor, handcuffed, with an interrogator shoving things up his rectum, and said, 'That's not abuse. That's torture.' There was quiet."

Taguba said that he saw "a video of a male American soldier in uniform sodomizing a female detainee." The video was not made public in any of the subsequent court proceedings, nor has there been any public government mention of it. Such images would have added an even more inflammatory element to the outcry over Abu Ghraib. "It's bad enough that there were photographs of Arab men wearing women's panties," Taguba said.

"The whole idea that Rumsfeld projects—'We're here to protect the nation from terrorism'—is an oxymoron," Taguba said. "He and his aides have abused their offices and have no idea of the values and high standards that are expected of them. And they've dragged a lot of officers with them."

Michael Moore claimed (in his movie) that the bin Laden family was allowed to fly out of the US shortly after 911 and the government denied it. Now we know the government was lying.

June 20, 2007

New FBI Documents: Osama bin Laden May Have Chartered Saudi Flight Out of U.S. after 9/11

(Washington, DC) -- Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released new documents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI") related to the "expeditious departure" of Saudi nationals, including members of the bin Laden family, from the United States following the 9/11 attacks.  According to one of the formerly confidential documents, dated 9/21/2001, terrorist Osama bin Laden may have chartered one of the Saudi flights.

The document states:

"ON 9/19/01, A 727 PLANE LEFT LAX, RYAN FLT #441 TO ORLANDO, FL W/ETA (estimated time of arrival) OF 4-5PM.  THE PLANE WAS CHARTERED EITHER BY THE SAUDI ARABIAN ROYAL FAMILY OR OSAMA BIN LADEN…THE LA FBI SEARCHED THE PLANE [REDACTED] LUGGAGE, OF WHICH NOTHING UNUSUAL WAS FOUND."

Every institution has to work with 'limited resources' so they use their money wisely. Not the US military. They waste money on projects that aren't based in any scientific principle. They spend because they have too much money. The GOP will claim the military was gutted under Clinton (with their help since they wrote the spending bills) but the military always has enough money for idiocy. It's time to really gut the military - maybe then it'll learn how to fight wars and win them.

June 21, 2007

Fringe Science And $78 Billion Yields 'Gay Bombs' and Psychic Teleportation

Just this month, the government confirmed that an Ohio Air Force laboratory had asked for $7.5 million to build a nonlethal "gay bomb," a weapon that would encourage enemies to make love, not war. The weapon would use strong aphrodisiacs to make enemy troops so sexually attracted to each other that they'd lose interest in fighting.

Just three years ago, the military funded a specious study of psychic teleportation, according to the Federation of American Scientists. An 88-page report prepared by the Air Force Research Lab contended that moving through mind powers is "quite real and can be controlled."

Will pro war and pro torture Democrats win another one and completely destroy what's left of the Democratic Party?

June 19, 2007

CIA Nominee Linked to Torture

WASHINGTON, June 18 — In the months after the Sept. 11 attacks, at a time when the Central Intelligence Agency had long been out of the interrogation business, senior C.I.A. officers scrambled to build a program to question terror suspects in secret jails abroad.

To check on the legality of the harsh interrogation techniques they proposed, they turned to John A. Rizzo, who was then acting as the agency's top lawyer.

On Tuesday, Mr. Rizzo will go before the Senate Intelligence Committee for a confirmation hearing to become the C.I.A.'s general counsel, giving the new Democratic majority its first chance at a public airing of agency practices that drew condemnation abroad and set off a prolonged debate at home.

With each passing day the war on Iraq and the war on terror are being exposes for the farce they've always been. Another 80 POWs are about to be released. Historians will wonder why the Supreme Court sat on its ass and did nothing while the government kidnapped and held people without cause.

History will also condemn the military commander in both Iraq and Guantanamo Bay. Have we ever had a group of generals so out of touch with reality?

June 19, 2007

Six Detainees Transfered

The Department of Defense announced today the transfer of six detainees from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Two detainees were transferred to Tunisia and four detainees were transferred to Yemen. These detainees were determined to be eligible for transfer following a comprehensive series of review processes at Guantanamo Bay.

Approximately 80 detainees remain at Guantanamo who the U.S. government has determined eligible for transfer or release. Departure of these remaining detainees is subject to ongoing discussions between the United States and other nations.

The greatest military in human history can't win this war - no one can. In all wars, someone wins and someone loses. The longer we try to keep this stalemate going the worse things get. Someone must win, someone must lose.

June 19, 2007

A war on rewind, in a bleaker Baghdad

At the White House last June, back from a secretive trip to Baghdad, an upbeat President Bush told reporters assembled in the Rose Garden, "I sense something different happening in Iraq."

It's June again and those roses are once more in bloom. But in Baghdad the scene looks only bleaker.

To a visitor returning after a year, the something different is the spread of concrete blast barriers across ever more of the city, the accumulation of still more rubble, the sectarian "cleansing" of neighborhoods, the ruin of still more lives — of friends whose loved ones have fled, been kidnapped, been killed. And for those left behind, life is worse.

This is one of the few resignations that seemed to have happened without a cloud of criminal or ethical violations. How did he do it? However, this budget director, like all budget directors of republican presidents are failures. The Bush debt exceeds $3.1 trillion, almost twice as much as any president in history (Reagan had the previous record debt - $1.6 trillion).

June 19, 2007

White House budget director resigns

WASHINGTON — White House budget director Rob Portman is resigning and will be replaced by former Iowa Rep. Jim Nussle, Bush administration officials said Tuesday.

Nussle ran for governor of Iowa last year and was defeated. He has been serving in Iowa as an adviser in former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani's campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

Bloomberg ran as a Democrat and governed as a Democrat. How else could he win in a very liberal city like New York? If anyone thought he was a republican they were dupped.

Personally, I think candidates who change party ID should be required to do so before the next election, not in mid term. All such party changes are a slap in the face of those who vote for the party, not the man.

June 19, 2007

NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg Leaves GOP

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Tuesday switched his party status from Republican to unaffiliated, a stunning move certain to be seen as a prelude to an independent presidential bid that would upend the 2008 race.

The billionaire former CEO, who was a lifelong Democrat before he switched to the GOP for his first mayoral run, said the change in voter registration does not mean he is running for president.

Now that polls show Democrats are in the sewer they may sum up the courage to impeach agency heads that broke the law. If Bush thinks the laws are wrong, why did he sign them or challenge them in court? Imagine this court hearing...Bush signs a law and then tells the court he's not going to obey it because he disagrees with it. The justifies would laugh uncontrollably.

Knowing the current Democratic leadership, Bush could shit on their collective faces and they wouldn't do anything.

An Impeachable Offense
June 19, 2007

US agencies disobey 6 laws that president challenged

WASHINGTON -- Federal officials have disobeyed at least six new laws that President Bush challenged in his signing statements, a government study disclosed yesterday. The report provides the first evidence that the government may have acted on claims by Bush that he can set aside laws under his executive powers.

In a report to Congress, the non partisan Government Accountability Office studied a small sample of the bill provisions that Bush has signed into law but also challenged with signing statements. The GAO found that agencies disobeyed six such laws, while enforcing 10 others as written even though Bush had challenged them.

Bush and his commanders have one thing in common; they don't know how to win a war against a country with no army, navy or air force. Maybe we should give Iraq an army, a navy and an air force so we can defeat them.

June 17, 2007

Petraeus Says Iraq Plan Won't Succeed By September

June 17 (Bloomberg) -- The odds of building a stable Iraqi government by September are slim, even with the addition of 30,000 U.S. troops to give lawmakers in Baghdad security, said the top U.S. general in the Middle East country.

The "aggregate level" of violence has not diminished since the troop increase began five months ago, General David Petraeus said in an interview on "Fox News Sunday." Asked whether he thought the strategy could succeed by early September when he's due to report to Congress, Petraeus was negative.

Destroying the integrity of the Justice Department and our system of justice should be grounds for impeachment and removal from office but Democrats don't have what it takes to humiliate the GOP into supporting the "the rule of law."

June 18, 2007

U.S. attorneys fallout seeps into courts

WASHINGTON — For months, the Justice Department and Atty. Gen. Alberto R. Gonzales have taken political heat for the purge of eight U.S. attorneys last year.

Now the fallout is starting to hit the department in federal courtrooms around the country.

Defense lawyers in a growing number of cases are raising questions about the motives of government lawyers who have brought charges against their clients. In court papers, they are citing the furor over the U.S. attorney dismissals as evidence that their cases may have been infected by politics.

We know two absolute truths; first, Rumsfeld knew about Adu Ghraid and refused to brief congress and/or Bush and failed to fire him after he failed to inform congress and himself about the grave war crimes committed by US soldiers.

An Impeachable Offense
June 17, 2007

White House denies prior knowledge of Abu Ghraib abuse

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The White House on Sunday insisted that President George W. Bush first learned about abuse at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison from media reports, contrary to assertions by a former top general that Bush likely knew about the scandal before it broke.

"The President said over three years ago that he first saw the pictures of the abuse on television," said White House spokesman Scott Stanzel in Crawford, Texas, where Bush is spending the weekend at his ranch.

Democrats took ownership of this war when they refunded it. They can't argue Bush is an incompetent commander in chief because only a fool would give an incompetent commander in chief more money to fight his wars. So now that Democrats own this war they're responsible for the genocide that's taking place - genocide is a war crime. As for the US military - they're equally guilty of war crimes.

An Impeachable Offense
June 18, 2007

Iraq on verge of genocidal war

The man who led the initial American effort to reconstruct Iraq after the war believes the country is on the brink of a genocidal civil war and its government will fall apart unless the US changes course and allows a three-way federal structure. He has also urged talks with Iran and other regional players.

Jay Garner, the former US general appointed two months before the invasion to head reconstruction in Iraq, admitted that before the 2003 war coordination between the various US departments and military had been disjointed.

A few years ago lying was considered wrong. Today the bunnies in the GOP lie like children who've never been disciplined. There's not a lot new here; Reagan lied about cutting taxes and balancing the budget, Bush lied about cutting taxes and balancing the budget and every conservative in government lied about a threat to our national security. It's what they do but isn't it pathetic that so many centrist and conservative Democrats support(ed) those lies.

June 13, 2007

Former intelligence officers: Republican Presidential Candidates Betray the Rule of Law and Our National Security

As former intelligence officers -- most of us have served the United States in undercover positions -- we are saddened and appalled by the recent public comments of former Senator Fred Thompson, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, and former Governor Mitt Romney -- one a potential candidate and the other two declared candidates for the Republican nomination for president -- with respect to the perjury and obstruction of justice conviction of Vice President Cheney's Chief of Staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby.

These men misrepresent the case against Mr. Libby and call into question the integrity of a respected Federal Judge and U.S. attorney. Their positions with respect to the just and fair punishment meted out to Mr. Libby raise serious questions about their commitment to the rule of law free of partisan bias.

We are particularly concerned by the recent speech by Fred Thompson.

Conservatives wonder why liberals hate the military. It's all pretty simple; they can't win wars, they can't take care of soldiers and vets, they can't tell the truth and they can't investigate themselves impartially. What are they good at?

June 16, 2007

Mail Undelivered at Walter Reed

WASHINGTON (AP) - Turns out the trouble at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, the focus of a firestorm of criticism over poor treatment of wounded war veterans, reached into the mailroom.

The Army said Friday that it has opened an investigation into the recent discovery of 4,500 letters and parcels - some dating to May 2006 - at Walter Reed that were never delivered to soldiers.

I think the question is more basic. The military needs any fool stupid enough to join and they're already forcing amputees from this war back into service etc. Why not force the mentally ill back into service? Who's next - the generation who fought WW2? I'd suggest all the Vietnam era pundits who never served their country who support this war? Let's put Rush Limbaugh and Dick Cheney in uniform and watch how fast they turn against this war.

June 15, 2007

Pentagon may drop mental health questions

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. troops would no longer be asked to reveal previous mental health treatment when applying for security clearances under a proposal being considered by the Pentagon.

The idea stems from the finding that service members avoid needed counseling because they believe that getting it — and acknowledging it — could cost them their clearance as well as do other harm to their careers, The Associated Press has learned.

"This is just one of several items under review by the Department of Defense and the services in an effort to remove the stigma associated with mental health issues," said Air Force Maj. Patrick Ryder.

Due to criminal behavior the war mongers who took us to war have left, the corrupt appointees are leaving so the only people left serving Bush are the people who spin the brain dead media.

Any other president, VP, AG and Sec. of Defense would have been impeached and removed from office years ago. As long as the country is leaderless nothing will change. Leadership vacuums are always filled so the only question left unanswered is "who will fill it"? - the people who took us to war for no reason, the people who corrupted our government, or those who let one or the other happen under their watch and did nothing about it? Damn pathetic.

An Impeachable Offense
June 16, 2007

Justice Department Official Resign Over Attorney Firings

WASHINGTON - A senior Justice Department official who helped carry out the dismissals of federal prosecutors said Friday he is resigning. Mike Elston, chief of staff to Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty, is the fifth Justice official to leave after being linked to the dismissals of the prosecutors.

Elston was accused of threatening at least four of the eight fired U.S. attorneys to keep quiet about their ousters. In a statement Friday, the Justice Department said Elston was leaving voluntarily to take a job with an unnamed Washington-area law firm.

Bush (and the media) hammer Democrats on increased spending and they get away with it because Democrats sat back and said absolutely nothing while Bush and the GOP accumulated trillions of dollars of debt. The utter incompetence of the Democratic leadership has been on display for years. How they got power is beyond me.

In 1981, before the Reagan tax cut we had less than a trillion dollars of debt. Today, it's almost $9 trillion. During this time when the debt exploded, why didn't Democrats grab the issue and shove it down the hypocritical throats of every fiscal conservative in the GOP?

June 16, 2007

President Bush And The National Debt

On the day he took office, the National Debt stood at this unfathomable number:

$5,727.776.738,304.64

In fiscal shorthand, that's $5.7 trillion dollars. Trillion with a "T."

Six and a half years later, the Bureau of Public Debt tells us the National Debt clocks in at a staggering:

$8,835,268,597,181.95

That's $8.8 trillion – an increase of $3.1 trillion dollars since January 20, 2001. And that amounts to a jump of 54% during Mr. Bush's watch.

CNN is utterly oblivious to reality. They say anti war members of the Democratic Party were "angry" with them after they refunded Bush's war. In the real world the PEW poll says most Americans think Democrats aren't fighting hard enough to stop Bush's war and in other polls; Reid is at 19% approval, Pelosi's numbers are dropping like a rock, the approval rating of congress is at a 15-year low and the number of Americans who think we're heading in the wrong direction is at historic levels, but CNN thinks it's only the anti war Democrats who are angry. Good grief. Do they have any real reporters left at CNN?

As for the Democrats and the sorry excuse for leaders they've chosen, they continue to be a poll-driven party, never attempting to lead the nation in a new direction, but instead, constantly following the polls. They are utterly worthless.

June 12, 2007

Democrats to revive Iraq war timetables

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Senate Democrats will once again try to impose timetables for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, Majority Leader Harry Reid announced Tuesday.

Reid said Democrats will use a defense authorization bill for fiscal year 2008 as a vehicle to revive two Iraq timetable amendments that they pushed unsuccessfully during a fight over Iraq funding in May.

Is there anyone in this White House who has skin thick enough to be an adult?

June 13, 2007

Officials rebuked for disclosing Rove's ties to firings

WASHINGTON — The White House's former political director was furious at Justice Department officials for disclosing to Congress that the administration had forced out the U.S. attorney in Little Rock, Ark., to make way for a protege of Karl Rove, President Bush's political adviser, according to documents released late Tuesday.

Then-White House political affairs director Sara Taylor spelled out her frustrations in a Feb. 16 e-mail to Kyle Sampson, then the chief of staff to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

The US government can't find, jail, charge or try any terrorists but by god there are 500,000 of them out there. The war on terror has become a joke.

An Impeachable Offense
June 13, 2007

FBI Terror Watch List includes more than 500,000 names

A terrorist watch list compiled by the FBI has apparently swelled to include more than half a million names.

Privacy and civil liberties advocates say the list is growing uncontrollably, threatening its usefulness in the war on terror.

The bureau says the number of names on its terrorist watch list is classified.

The problem isn't just in the GOP. When faced with a president who took us to war for no reason and was torturing POWs, what did our main stream religions do? They went after gay marriage as if it was the gravest moral threat facing our nation. Religions have become an extension of the hate mongering in the GOP. They should be ashamed of themselves.

June 12, 2007

How GOP presidential candidates apply their Christian moral ethics

And Giuliani replied that the dismissals were appropriate and that he would not change the current rules. He said, "This is not the time to deal with disruptive issues like this. . . . At a time of war, you don't make fundamental changes like this."

Hang on . . . isn't "a time of war" precisely the right time to allow all of God's creatures to pitch in, especially (in Giuliani's formulation) when Western Christian values are being threatened by global jihadists? Reports indicate that as many as 10,000 service members, including hundreds of language specialists, have already been dismissed by the military because they were openly gay. Is it really Christian, or even pragmatically wise, to undercut the war on terror in this fashion?

Yes, everybody on stage said.

What more needs to be said...we can't trust even faith-based organizations any more. Up is down and wrong is right. Congress should get off its duff and force this company to pay us back.

June 13, 2007

Faith-based ships sold to pay bills

In theory, it was simple: Congress gave two decommissioned Coast Guard cutters to a faith-based group in California, directing that the ships be used only to provide medical services to islands in the South Pacific.

In reality, the ships never got any closer to the South Pacific islands than the San Francisco Bay. The mission group quickly sold one to a maritime equipment company, which sold it for substantially more to a pig farmer who uses it as a commercial ferry off Nicaragua. The group sold the other ship to a Bay Area couple who rent it for eco-tours and marine research.

It's starting to look like Bush's strongest supporters are the Democrat leadership in both Houses. They give him whatever he wants and then wonder why their numbers plummet.

June 13, 2007

Republicans abandoning Bush

WASHINGTON - As President Bush attempts to revive the controversial immigration reform bill he supports, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll finds that Republicans are abandoning the president, which has dropped his job-approval rating below 30 percent -- his lowest mark ever in the survey.

But he isn't the only one whose support is on the decline in the poll. Congress' approval rating has plummeted eight points, bringing it below even Bush's. And just one in five believe the country is on the right track, which is the lowest number on this question in nearly 15 years.

June 15, 2007

Cunningham financier admits role in guilty plea

A New York financier has admitted playing a key role in the scandal that brought down former Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, according to a guilty plea unsealed this week.

Thomas Kontogiannis said he helped finance the purchase of Cunningham's $2.5 million house in Rancho Santa Fe, in a deal that evolved from two military contractors' alleged plans to bribe the congressman.

The home purchase – and the sale of Cunningham's previous home in Del Mar – was at the center of a scandal that resulted in a prison sentence of more than eight years for the former legislator.

June 14, 2007

How ready is your state's National Guard?

Correspondents from across the USA spoke with governors, National Guard commanders and public affairs officers to determine each unit's equipment and preparedness levels for dealing with national disasters. The highlighted percentages listed are the estimated percentage of domestic equipment available to the National Guard in that state, provided by those sources. In some cases, no estimate of the percentage of available equipment was provided. Some sources cited security reasons, others were not certain enough of their inventory to provide a number. Shortages vary by unit, 1A, 7A. (N/A means percentage not available.)

When we break the law we go to jail. When the government breaks the law, nothing happens. We used to be a nation of laws, but that was a long time ago. Impeach the bastards at the FBI.

June 15, 2007

Judge Orders FBI to Release NSL Abuse Records

Washington, D.C. - A judge ordered the FBI today to finally release agency records about its abuse of National Security Letters (NSLs) to collect Americans' personal information. The ruling came just a day after the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) urged the judge to immediately respond in its lawsuit over agency delays.

EFF sued the FBI in April for failing to respond to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request about the misuse of NSLs as revealed in a Justice Department report. This week, more evidence of abuse was uncovered by the Washington Post, and EFF urged the judge Thursday to force the FBI to stop stalling the release of its records on the deeply flawed program.

June 16, 2007

Prosecutors want prison for ex-official

WASHINGTON, June 16 (UPI) -- Federal prosecutors asked a judge Friday to give former U.S. Deputy Interior Secretary J. Steven Griles a substantial prison term.

In a 48-page memo, prosecutors told U.S. District Judge Ellen Huvelle that Griles assisted lobbyist Jack Abramoff in return for jobs and other favors for four female "close personal friends," The Washington Post reported.

When lenders get in trouble as they did in the 80's and early 90's (S&L) the government spent hundreds of billions bailing them out. When they get in trouble again be assured your tax dollars will be wisely spent bailing them out again.

June 15, 2007

Foreclosure Rate Hits Historic High

The percentage of U.S. mortgages entering foreclosure in the first three months of the year was the highest in more than 50 years, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

As the association released its numbers, the Federal Reserve held a hearing to determine whether regulators could do anything to crack down on abusive lending practices, which have exacerbated the problem.

We knew the FBI was abusing the powers they received under the Patriot Act and the Congress reauthorized those abuses when they reauthorized the act. The Patriot Act must be abolished and if we had a worthwhile Supreme Court they'd have found it unconstitutional within days of becoming law. But the way things stand now the government can violate our rights for decades and the Court will do nothing. Individual rights can be abolished within seconds and it takes decades to get them back...does the court have any value whatsoever?

An Impeachable Offense
June 14, 2007

FBI Frequently Overstepped in Collecting Data

An internal FBI audit has found that the bureau potentially violated the law or agency rules more than 1,000 times while collecting data about domestic phone calls, e-mails and financial transactions in recent years, far more than was documented in a Justice Department report in March that ignited bipartisan congressional criticism.

The new audit covers just 10 percent of the bureau's national security investigations since 2002, and so the mistakes in the FBI's domestic surveillance efforts probably number several thousand, bureau officials said in interviews. The earlier report found 22 violations in a much smaller sampling.

"The FBI's comprehensive audit of National Security Letter use across all field offices has confirmed the inspector general's findings that we had inadequate internal controls for use of an invaluable investigative tool," FBI General Counsel Valerie E. Caproni said. "Our internal audit examined a much larger sample than the inspector general's report last March, but we found similar percentages of NSLs that had errors."

Oil companies gave money to Bush and members of congress who supported a war in the Middle East - a war fought for no reason whatsoever. They bought themselves a war and their record profits show it was a wise investment. unfortunately the war destroyed the reputation of the United States, the Presidency, the Bush Administration, the GOP and now it's destroying the Democratic Party but by god they made a lot of money doing it.

June 13, 2007

Poll: Oil Companies, Bush Blamed for Record Gas Prices

WASHINGTON -- A new Quinnipiac poll released today shows that most Americans blame oil companies for high gasoline prices -- but many also blame President Bush.

The survey of 1,711 people, conducted June 5 to 11, found that while 43 percent thought oil companies were largely responsible for the runup in prices, 20 percent thought Bush was the reason.