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Impeach Bush--Index 83

Conservatism destroyed the GOP, not Bush. Rush Limbaugh, Fox News and the endless lies put out by GOP propgandists allowed the GOP to get away with countless lies. Now those lies can't be hidden from the public anymore. Our government debt soars, inflation is soaring, the courts are worthless, bankruptcies are soaring, foreclosures are soaring...and this comes after republicans said tax cuts fix everything. Tax cut don't fix anything. They only create massive long term debt and endless future tax increases.

August 12, 2008

Longtime Republican voters Looking At Democrats

Cheap mortgages and cheap gas built this sprawling landscape of tan and gray stucco homes, iron gates and golf course communities. And the people who flocked here over the last decade -- upwardly mobile young families in pursuit of lower taxes and wholesome neighborhoods -- emerged as a Republican voting bloc crucial to President Bush's 2004 reelection.

But listen to Anna Rodriguez and her neighbors who gather nightly on lawn chairs to unwind, and a change comes into focus that could shift the national political landscape in 2008 and beyond.

The occupation had destroyed their infrastructure, their economy and their way of life. Why are we still there? Because we have cowards in Congress who don't want to do their jobs. They want another vacation instead.

August 10, 2008

Iraq demands US withdrawal timeline

The US must provide a "clear timeline" to withdraw its troops from Iraq as part of an agreement allowing them to operate in Iraq beyond this year, Hoshiyar Zebari, Iraq's foreign minister, has said.

His comments on Sunday are the strongest public assertion yet that Iraq is demanding a timeline for US withdrawal.

The Reuters news agency quoted Zebari saying an agreement, including the timeline, was "very close" and would probably be presented to the Iraqi parliament in early September.

Just like the US, Iraq is becoming a welfare state. Almost every state in the Union now gets more from government than it pays in. We can't wait for our next tax cut, rebate check or stimulus package...and every penny is it is borrowed from the next generation. Do we really want to destroy Iraq the way we've already destroyed our future. The US debt is almost $10 trillion. Most of that debt was created during periods of massive tax cuts.

August 1, 2008

Iraq Private Sector Falters; Rolls of Government Soar

BAGHDAD — Hampered by years of violence, a decimated infrastructure, a lack of foreign investors and a flood of imports that undercut local businesses, Iraq's private sector, particularly its small non-oil economy, has so far failed to flourish as its American patrons had hoped.

In its absence, the Iraqi government has been sustaining the economy the way it always has: by putting citizens on its payroll. Since 2005, according to federal budgets, the number of government employees has nearly doubled, to 2.3 million from 1.2 million.

President Carter said "conserve." The conservative party said "no." That's how we got into this mess. Had conservatives followed the Carter model of conservation and renewable energy, OPEC wouldn't control our economy. It's not like this hasn't happened before. It happened under Nixon and under Carter.

August 10, 2008

Opec income hits record as oil prices soar

Opec nations earned as much in the first half of this year as they did in the whole of 2007 – thanks both to record oil prices and record production – triggering a big increase in its spending.

Members of the Saudi ­Arabia-led oil exporters' cartel took home $645bn (£335bn, €430bn) between January and June, just below the record $671bn they earned last year, according to the US department of energy.

It's highly likely the case against Ivins is still so weak that it'll be impossible to prove he did anything. What we know for sure is the US government housed the anthrax that was used against US Senators and then the government tried to blame al Qaeda. In reality, the government was fully aware the anthrax was made in the US (in Texas originally) and misinformed the American people about that fact.

August 11, 2008

Anthrax case spurs liability questions

WASHINGTON — The federal government may be liable for tens of millions of dollars in negligence claims over its assertion that one of its own scientists used anthrax from a government laboratory to kill five people, injure 17 and terrorize the country, legal experts say.

At issue is whether the government knew or should have known that scientist Bruce Ivins, whom the Justice Department says carried out the attacks alone, was potentially dangerous, said Jonathan Turley, professor at the George Washington University Law School. Ivins' lawyers dispute the government's assertions.

The carnage in Iraq is caused by the US occupation. The anti war side got it right again.

August 7, 2008

Iraqi cleric links truce, US withdrawal timetable

BAGHDAD - Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr will call on his fighters to maintain a cease-fire against American troops but may lift the order if a planned Iraq-U.S. security agreement lacks a timetable for the withdrawal of American forces, a spokesman said Thursday.

The statement by Sheik Salah al-Obeidi comes as al-Sadr plans to reveal details of a formula to reorganize his Mahdi Army militia by separating it into an unarmed cultural organization and elite fighting cells.

August 10, 2008

Scientists warn that the North Pole could be free of ice in just five years' time instead of 60

Ice at the North Pole melted at an unprecedented rate last week, with leading scientists warning that the Arctic could be ice-free in summer by 2013.

Satellite images show that ice caps started to disintegrate dramatically several days ago as storms over Alaska's Beaufort Sea began sucking streams of warm air into the Arctic.

As a result, scientists say that the disappearance of sea ice at the North Pole could exceed last year's record loss. More than a million square kilometres melted over the summer of 2007 as global warming tightened its grip on the Arctic. But such destruction could now be matched, or even topped, this year.

How is this possible? We have a criminal in the White House, incompetent SOBs on the Supreme Court and in Congress. The destruction of the US as we knew it continues.

Impeachable Offense
August 5, 2008

Gitmo detainees subject to detention even if acquitted

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Some detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba will likely never be released because of the danger they pose, and those tried and acquitted will still be subject to continued detention as enemy combatants, a Pentagon spokesman said Tuesday.

Geoff Morrell, the Pentagon press secretary, made the remarks as Salim Hamdan, a Yemeni, awaited a verdict in the first war crimes trial to be held under a special regime created for "war on terror" suspects.

Impeachable Offense
August 5, 2008

CIA officials deny fake Iraq-al-Qaida link letter

WASHINGTON - Two former CIA officers Tuesday denied that they or the spy agency faked an Iraqi intelligence document purporting to link Saddam Hussein with 9/11 bomber Mohammed Atta, as they are quoted as saying in a new book.

The White House issued the statement on behalf of the former officials after a day of adamant denials from the CIA and Bush administration about the claim, made in "The Way of the World," a book by Washington-based journalist Ron Suskind.

August 10, 2008

U.S. guns arm Mexican drug cartels

The munitions are hidden under trucks and stashed in the trunks of cars, or concealed under the clothing of people who brazenly walk across the international bridges. They are showing up in seizures and in the aftermath of shootouts between the cartels and police in Mexico.

More than 90% of guns seized at the border or after raids and shootings in Mexico have been traced to the United States, according to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Last year, 2,455 weapons traces requested by Mexico showed that guns had been purchased in the United States, according to the ATF. Texas, Arizona and California accounted for 1,805 of those traced weapons.

July 31, 2008
Impeachable Offense

British Territory Used for US Sponsored Torture

Almost two years have passed since President George W. Bush publicly acknowledged the existence of a CIA program in which agency-leased aircraft fly terror suspects between secret prisons and interrogation sites around the world. "This program has helped us to take potential mass murderers off the streets before they have a chance to kill," the President said on Sept. 6, 2006. Since that admission, the White House has declined to elaborate or comment further on the program's specifics, although multiple reports have surfaced regarding the existence of secret facilities in Poland and Romania.

According to a former senior American official, it appears another locale can be added to the international roster of interrogation sites - one both more obscure and potentially more controversial than the alleged sites in Poland and Romania. The source tells TIME that, in 2002 and possibly 2003, the U.S. imprisoned and interrogated one or more terrorist suspects on Diego Garcia, an island in the Indian Ocean controlled by the United Kingdom.

Let's look at the facts. When a store in Quebec tried to unionize, they closed it down. Wal-Mart Crushes Union by Closing Store. Wal Mart's biggest problem is it thinks were all republicans - that is they think we can't Google.

August 1, 2008

Wal-Mart denies that it told employees how to vote

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world's largest retailer, denied a report Friday that it had pressured employees to vote against Democrats in November because of worries that a bill the party supports would make it easier for workers to unionize.

The measure, called the Employee Free Choice Act, would allow labor organizations to unionize workplaces without secret ballot elections. It was co-sponsored by Barack Obama, the presumed Democratic presidential candidate, and opposed by John McCain, the presumed Republican nominee.

Wal Mart is making record profits. Giving their workers a piece of the pie means less money for their stockholders and CEO. So of course Wal Mart hates Democrats. Wal Mart could learn a lot from Henry Ford. He knew his workers would buy a car if he paid them enough so they could afford one.

August 1, 2008

Wal-Mart Warns of Democratic Win

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is mobilizing its store managers and department supervisors around the country to warn that if Democrats win power in November, they'll likely change federal law to make it easier for workers to unionize companies -- including Wal-Mart.

In recent weeks, thousands of Wal-Mart store managers and department heads have been summoned to mandatory meetings at which the retailer stresses the downside for workers if stores were to be unionized.

Let's look at the facts another way. The anthrax originally came from Texas. It was housed on a US military base. It was then sent to people all over the country without anyone being to trace it back person who sent it even though it was housed on a US military base. A guy is found dead and the case is closed. I smell cover-up.

August 1, 2008

Anthrax suspect kills self before filing of criminal charges

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A top U.S. biodefense researcher apparently committed suicide just as the Justice Department was about to file criminal charges against him in the anthrax mailings that traumatized the nation in the weeks following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, according to a published report.

The scientist, Bruce E. Ivins, 62, who worked for the past 18 years at the government's biodefense labs at Fort Detrick, Maryland, had been told about the impending prosecution, the Los Angeles Times reported for Friday editions. The laboratory has been at the center of the FBI's investigation of the anthrax attacks, which killed five people.

The Pentagon is sending injured soldiers back into battle. Does anyone still think they give a damn what they're doing to these soldiers?

August 5, 2008

Pentagon Spends $300M to Study PTS

The Pentagon is spending an unprecedented $300 million this summer on research for post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury, offering hope not only for troops but hundreds of thousands of civilians.

The money -- the most spent in one year on military medical research since a $210 million breast cancer study in 1993 -- will fund 171 research projects on two of the most prevalent injuries of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Nearly the entire media pushed the link between Saddam and 911 even though there was absolutely no evidence supporting their lies. When the media is so willing to lie to us, who's there to protect us from the lies of this White House?

Impeachable Offense
August 5, 2008

Book says White House ordered forged intelligence

A new book by the author Ron Suskind claims that the White House ordered the CIA to forge a back-dated, handwritten letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence to Saddam Hussein.

Suskind writes in "The Way of the World," to be published Tuesday, that the alleged forgery – adamantly denied by the White House – was designed to portray a false link between Hussein's regime and al Qaeda as a justification for the Iraq war.

August 5, 2008

Inflation Outpaces Spending

Consumers spent more in June, but only because the things they bought cost more.

Driven primarily by energy and food prices, inflation grew 0.8 percent over May, the biggest monthly increase since September 2005, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported on Monday. Spending, by comparison, grew just 0.6 percent in June.

"Inflation is intensifying, and that is the main source of weakness in consumer spending," said Dean Maki, chief United States economist at Barclays.

Republicans have never been known for their intellect. They voted for Reagan twice and Bush twice. This alone proves their dumber than a doornail. So now we have McCain lying in an ad, an ad he approved. Will he lie like Reagan and Bush if he's elected? There's plenty of evidence he will.

July 26, 2008

McCain Ad Bashes Obama for Not Visiting Troops Using Footage of Obama Visiting Troop

Sen. Barack Obama's landing at Chicago's Midway airport this evening was greeted with the news that rival Sen. John McCain launched a new TV ad attacking Obama for that canceled visit to see wounded troops in Germany.

Obama told me earlier today that the trip was canceled because of "a concern that maybe our visit was going to be perceived as political. And the last thing that I want to do is have injured soldiers and the staff at these wonderful institutions having to sort through whether this is political or not or get caught in the crossfire between campaigns."

It's still not official but it's highly likely we're in a recession. This points out another truth. Tax cuts don't work. If they did, we wouldn't be in our second recession in less than eight years.

July 31, 2008

We're in a recession

July 31 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. economy shrank at the end of 2007 and grew less than forecast in this year's second quarter, signaling that the country is in worse shape than investors had anticipated.

"We're in a recession," Allen Sinai, chief economist at Decision Economics Inc. in New York, said in a Bloomberg Television interview. "It's going to widen, it's going to deepen."

When conservatives say they're the party of less government, what that means is less for us, so there's more for them.

July 31, 2008

A third of Alaska's jobs can be traced to federal spending

The fallout from the federal corruption indictment of Sen. Ted Stevens, the once-powerful Alaska Republican who helped the state snag millions in pork-barrel projects, is being felt from Anchorage to Washington.

A third of Alaska's jobs can be traced to federal spending, according to the latest study by the University of Alaska's Institute of Social and Economic Research, and many spring from military expenditures that Stevens encouraged during decades of service on the appropriations subcommittee that oversees defense spending, The Post's Karl Vick reports today.

Is McCain still singing "bomb, bomb Iran?" IMO, anyone who jokes about killing innocent people is sick.

July 28, 2008

Gates: War with Iran would be 'disastrous'

A war with Iran would be "disastrous on a number of levels," according to U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.

In an article appearing in the latest issue of Parameters, the U.S. Army War College quarterly, Gates wrote that with the army already bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan, "another war in the Middle East is the last thing we need" - despite the fact that Iran "supports terrorism," is "a destabilizing force throughout the Middle East and Southwest Asia and, in my judgment, is hell-bent on acquiring nuclear weapons."

July 28, 2008

A Wave of Mega-Bankruptcies is Likely on the Way

The distressed trading levels in both investment-grade and speculative-rated bonds "suggests that we will see record-sized bankruptcies by volume into 2009-2010," said Christopher Garman, writing in high-yield research publication Leverage World.

About 1.8 percent of high-grade bonds by par value are trading at distressed levels, slightly under an all-time high of 2.4 percent, according to Garman, publisher of Leverage World and former head of high-yield strategy at Merrill Lynch & Co Inc.

About 27.2 percent of high-yield bonds by par value are distressed, Garman said.

Our own Revolutionary War tells us much about war also. George Washington quickly learned that citizen soldiers needed to return their homes and businesses so he was forced to ask the Continental Congress to begin the process of buying soldiers to fight our war- which is what they did. Even noble causes can't go on forever...people need to put food on the table..and they want to return to some sort of normalcy. Bush's "War on Terror" only created more enemies because the US military killed tens of thousands of innocent civilians and their families quickly joined the insurgency.

Impeachable Offense
July 30, 2008

DOD Study: No Battlefield Solutions to Terrorism

A terrorism study prepared for the Defense Department has some bad news for the Bush administration—and presents a sizable challenge for whoever is next in the Oval Office.

The current strategy for defeating al Qaeda has not been successful in diminishing the group's capabilities and is unlikely to do better without a shift in emphasis, the Rand Corp. study concludes.

The report couldn't have been clearer in its refutation of one of the central tenants of the Bush administration's strategy against al Qaeda: the characterization of the conflict as a "global war." The administration has frequently attacked critics—especially Democrats—who say that counterterrorism should be built around law enforcement strategies.

July 30, 2008

U.S. 'wasted' $560 million on Iraq repairs

WASHINGTON (CNN)  -- The United States has "wasted" more than half a billion dollars in Iraq repairing facilities that were damaged because of poor security, the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction says in a report released Wednesday.

Stuart Bowen's quarterly report arrived at a price tag of $560 million by tallying the results of more than 100 audits his office has conducted.

July 28, 2008

A $1.6 trillion infrastructure bill is coming due

CHICAGO (Reuters) - A $1.6 trillion bill is coming due across the United States as governments face the daunting task of repairing roads, bridges and other parts of an aging infrastructure.

It is a problem exacerbated by the floods that spread misery across the Midwest this year, and one bound to squeeze budgets hit by the economic downturn all the more.

Rove waits for his pardon while Pelosi waits out the clock so no one will ever accuse her of doing her job.

Impeachable Offense
July 31, 2008

House panel votes to cite Rove for contempt

But it was not clear that the Democrats controlling a lame-duck Congress will push their case for abuse of power against a lame-duck president beyond televised talk and vague threats just a few weeks shy of final adjournment. As a practical matter, lawmakers have little time and less willingness to follow through on most charges, let alone punishments, before Bush leaves office.

They're finding plenty of time and political purpose, however, for public reviews of what Democrats say is the abuse of power and politicization across the Bush administration. Rove and the Justice Department starred in Wednesday's proceedings.

July 30, 2008

Bill to aid paralyzed vets blocked by GOP

A bill promising more money for programs that help paralyzed veterans is part of a bundle of legislation tied up in partisan bickering in the Senate.

The Christopher Reeve and Dana Reeve Act, which includes money for research into spinal cord injuries, is one of about 36 bills combined by Senate Democrats into what they are calling the Advancing America's Priorities Act.

The bills have been bundled in an attempt to bypass objections from Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., who has used senatorial privileges and procedures to stop action on several bills, including the spinal cord injury bill.

The Democratic plan failed Monday on a 50-42 vote, leaving them short of the 60 votes needed to cut off debate on the package.

Does Cheney care about our troops? Hell no.

July 27, 2008

Injured vets pull Dick Cheney invitation

His staff insisted the sick vets be sequestered for two hours before Cheney's arrival and couldn't leave until he'd finished talking, officials confirmed.

"Word got back to us ... that this would be a prerequisite," said the veterans executive director, David Gorman, who noted the meeting hall doesn't have any rest rooms. "We told them it just wasn't acceptable."

When Cheney spoke to the group in 2004, his handlers imposed the same stringent security lockdown, upsetting members, officials said.

Many of the vets are elderly and left pieces of themselves on foreign battlefields since World War II, and others were crippled by recent service in Iraq and Afghanistan. For health reasons, many can't be stuck in a room for hours.

July 28, 2008

Elderly File For Bankruptcy in Record Numbers

Elderly Americans are filing for bankruptcy in record numbers, according to a study by AARP, formerly the American Association of Retired Persons. At the same time, support is drying up from meal, transportation and other home assistance agencies that can't pay their own bills.

The numbers are stark. Of the more than 1 million Americans who filed for bankruptcy last year, nearly a quarter were 55 and up, AARP found. Bankruptcy filings among those ages 75 to 84 skyrocketed by 433 percent from 1991 to 2007.

The Fed has two choices - protect the economy from Bush's incompetence or not. So far Bernanke is defending Bush's failure. Watch how fast that changes after Obama is elected. Look for massive interest rate increases within days after the election.

July 29, 2008

Fed Debate Heats Up Over Rising Inflation

July 29 (Bloomberg) -- The policy debate within the Federal Reserve is growing sharper.

On one side is Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, who is opposed to raising interest rates even though consumer prices have gone up 5 percent over the past year.

On the other are at least three of the nine voting members of the Federal Open Market Committee. They want a rate increase to make sure prices come down and to reinforce the Fed's inflation-fighting credibility.

The media is so afraid of being called "liberal" that it'd rather be called "liars" and "incompetent."

July 28, 2008

Study Finds Media Bias Favors McCain

Barack Obama is getting more negative coverage than John McCain on TV network evening news shows, reversing Obama's lead in good press during the primaries, according to a new study by Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA). The study also finds that a majority of both candidates' coverage is unfavorable for the first time this year. According to CMPA President Dr. S. Robert Lichter, "Obama replaced McCain as the media's favorite candidate after New Hampshire. But now the networks are voting no on both candidates."

These results are from the Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA) 2008 Election News Watch Project. They are based on a scientific content analysis of 249 election news stories (7 hours 38 minutes of airtime) that aired on ABC World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, and Fox Special Report (first half hour) from June 8, 2008 to July 21, 2008. Previously we analyzed 2144 stories (43 hrs 30 min airtime) during the primary campaign from December 16, 2007 through June 7, 2008. We report on all on-air evaluations of the candidates by sources and reporters, after excluding comments by the campaigns about each other.

July 22, 2008

McCain Falsely Claims The Surge ''Began The Anbar Awakening,' But CBS Edits It Out

During an interview with Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), CBS Evening News host Katie Couric noted that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) said recently that "there might have been improved security [in Iraq] even without the surge" and asked McCain, "What's your response to that?"

After first calling Obama's claim "a false depiction of what actually happened," McCain proceeded to falsely claim that the surge "began the Anbar awakening":

In fact, the Sunni revolt against Al-Qaida in Iraq's Anbar province — commonly referred to as "The Awakening" — "began" long before Bush even announced his "surge" policy in January 2007. As the New York Times noted in April 2007:

Since McCain supports the war in Iraq and doesn't support tax increases to pay for it, then he also supports the Bush debt. So, the only people who'd vote for McCain are people who support passing mountains of debt to their children because they're too childish to pay for what they're spending.

I'm listing this as an impeachable offense for a few reasons. First, recently Bush said he'd cut the deficit. That was lie. He cut taxes instead. And secondly, because Bush promised to balance the budget every year of his presidency but when faced with massive deficits, he didn't increase taxes to pay for his war, he cut taxes. The Bush debt now stands at $3.8 trillion and it's rising fast. No president will be able to undo what Bush and the GOP did when they set out to bankrupt our Treasury.

Impeachable Offense
July 29, 2008

US deficit zooming to half-trillion as Bush leaves

WASHINGTON - The government's budget deficit will surge past a half-trillion dollars next year, according to gloomy new estimates, a record flood of red ink that promises to force the winner of the presidential race to dramatically alter his economic agenda.

The deficit will hit $482 billion in the 2009 budget year that will be inherited by Democrat Barack Obama or Republican John McCain, the White House estimated Monday. That figure is sure to rise after adding the tens of billions of dollars in additional Iraq war funding it doesn't include, and the total could be higher yet if the economy fails to recover as the administration predicts.

Since we know McCain is lying about Obama and we know he helped Bush lie about WMD, the only people who'd vote for him are people who don't care that their government is lying to them.

July 28, 2008

McCain lie: Snubbing Wounded Troops?

A new McCain ad says Obama "made time to go to the gym, but canceled a visit with wounded troops. Seems the Pentagon wouldn't allow him to bring cameras."

McCain's facts are literally true, but his insinuation – that the visit was canceled because of the press ban or the desire for gym time – is false. In fact, Obama visited wounded troops earlier – without cameras or press – both in the U.S. and Iraq. And his gym workouts are a daily routine.

The Obama campaign canceled the visit with wounded troops at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, Obama says, when he learned that the Pentagon would not allow him to bring along a retired Air Force major general who is serving as a foreign policy adviser to the campaign. Obama says that "triggered then a concern that maybe our visit was going to be perceived as political."

We've spent hundreds of billions going to war with Iraq twice and hundreds of billions rebuilding what we blew up. I think it's time we spend our money on us. What do you think?

July 28, 2008

Repairing U.S. bridges would cost $140 billion

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- It would cost at least $140 billion to repair all the nation's bridges if work began immediately, a nationwide safety organization said in a comprehensive report Monday.

The price tag will rise if the repairs are delayed, the group said.

"States simply cannot keep up with bridge maintenance," the report warns, adding that 73 percent of U.S. road traffic -- and 90 percent of truck traffic -- travels over state-owned bridges.

Impeachable Offense
July 28, 2008

EPA tells its staff: Don't answer watchdogs' queries

WASHINGTON — The Environmental Protection Agency has told its staff not to answer questions from the agency's internal watchdog, news reporters or the nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress, according an internal memo that an environmental group released Monday.

The June 16 memo to the staff of the EPA's enforcement division told them that if they're contacted by the EPA inspector general's office, an independent internal watchdog that monitors the agency, or by the Government Accountability Office, the investigators who work for Congress, they're to forward the call or e-mail to a designated person.

July 30, 2008

Experience called poor predictor of presidential success

"Experience matters, but its importance is terribly overstated," said historian Robert Dallek, the author of recent books about Presidents Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon.

Presidents with sterling resumes often have turned out to be busts, usually because they lacked the key quality a good president needs: sound judgment.

Yet presidents with far lesser credentials have triumphed. John F. Kennedy was 43 years old when he took office in 1961, four years younger than Obama. Kennedy's early years were rocky, Dallek said, but "he was a quick learner" and his third and final year as president was masterful.

What matters more than experience, scholars said, is an ability to hone and trust one's instincts.

"Give me good judgment every time," Dallek said.

It's understandable. After Reagan and Bush 41 left office the deficit and debt had more than tripled while the GOP defended deficits and debt. Then, for a few short years (the Clinton years) they saw the err of their ways and said we needed to balance the budget. Then the GOP got power again and balanced budgets were ignored by everyone. The only time fiscal conservatives are interested in balancing the budget is when they're out of power.

July 28, 2008

As deficit explodes, Obama, McCain say little about taming it

WASHINGTON — The federal budget deficit should soar to a record $482 billion in fiscal 2009, the White House said Monday, because of slow economic growth and taxpayer rebates.

The new figure, far above the $407 billion for fiscal 2009 that President Bush projected six months ago, would shatter the record of $413 billion set in fiscal 2004. This year's deficit is expected to be $389 billion.

The numbers mean that the next president will begin his term facing intense pressure to find new revenue or cut spending dramatically.

July 28, 2008

Author Responds To Iraq War was "f*cking stupid"

Spencer Ackerman, in yesterday's Washington Independent, claims I told him the Iraq war was "f*cking stupid". He did not seek to clear that quote with me, and I would not have approved it if he had. If he HAD sought a formal comment, I would have told him what I have said publicly before: in my view, the decision to invade Iraq in 2003 was an extremely serious strategic error. But the task of the moment is not to cry over spilt milk, rather to help clean it up: a task in which the surge, the comprehensive counterinsurgency approach, and our troops on the ground are admirably succeeding. ...

Like every other counterinsurgency professional, I warned against the war in 2002-3 on the grounds that it was likely to be extremely difficult, demand far more resources than our leaders seemed willing to commit, inflame world Muslim opinion making our counterterrorism tasks harder, and entail a significant opportunity cost in Afghanistan and elsewhere. This was hardly an original or brilliant insight. Nor was it particularly newsworthy: it was a view shared with the rest of my community, and you would be hard-pressed to find any professional counterinsurgent who thought the 2003/4 strategy was sensible.

July 28, 2008

A Counterinsurgency Guide for Politicos

Kilcullen explained that the handbook will not apply to future operations in Iraq or Afghanistan. "We try not to forge doctrine around an example," he said. Instead, it frames questions about supporting counterinsurgencies in partner or potential-partner countries through the prisms of national interest; graduated levels of commitment, and cost/benefit analysis. It offers numerous warnings about how arduous counterinsurgency is. In a paragraph about the "characteristics" of counterinsurgency, Kilcullen bolds the words "complex," "violent," "difficult," "controversial," "ambiguous," "long-duration" and "high-cost."

The handbook instructs policy-makers about the necessity of using all elements of national power -- not just military force, but also diplomacy, development aid, the rule of law, academic disciplines and other specialties often considered peripheral to warfighting -- to triumph in counterinsurgency. Victory, as well, is defined as support for a foreign nation's ability to successfully govern, rather than a decisive U.S. military effort.

Impeachable Offense
July 29, 2008

Justice Dept. Report on Hiring Finds Violations

Senior aides to former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales broke Civil Service laws by using politics to guide their hiring decisions, picking less-qualified applicants for important nonpolitical positions, slowing the hiring process at critical times and damaging the department's credibility, an internal report concluded on Monday.

A longtime prosecutor who drew rave reviews from his supervisors was passed over for an important counterterrorism slot because his wife was active in Democratic politics, and a much-less-experienced lawyer with Republican leanings got the job, the report said.

The media sat back and did nothing while the Bush White House turned our government into a recruiting ground for conservative inaptitude. While much of the damage can be done, the reputation of the media law in ruin. Can it ever redeem itself? Not in my eyes. They've lied about everything from Whitewater to WMD, and then praised Bush for being strong after he failed on 911.

Impeachable Offense
July 29, 2008

Senior aides broke Civil Service laws

Senior aides to former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales broke Civil Service laws by using politics to guide their hiring decisions, picking less-qualified applicants for important nonpolitical positions, slowing the hiring process at critical times and damaging the department's credibility, an internal report concluded on Monday.

A longtime prosecutor who drew rave reviews from his supervisors was passed over for an important counterterrorism slot because his wife was active in Democratic politics, and a much-less-experienced lawyer with Republican leanings got the job, the report said.

How much ink and time do you think the (previous) pro war networks, cable and other news outlets will give the disasters caused by their pro war rhetoric, demagogue and propaganda?

July 28, 2008

22,000 Vets Call in Suicide Hot Line's 1st Year

More than 22,000 veterans have sought help from a special suicide hot line in its first year, and 1,221 suicides have been averted, the government says.

According to a recent RAND Corp. study, roughly one in five soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan displays symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, putting them at a higher risk for suicide. Researchers at Portland State University found that male veterans are twice as likely to commit suicide than men who are not veterans.

In 2001 (prior to 911) the media had wall-wall coverage of gossip about a Gary Condit, a Democrat. Will the media do the same with Stevans even though he's been indicted? Not a chance.

July 29, 2008

GOP Senator Indicted On Seven Felony Counts

WASHINGTON - Sen. Ted Stevens, the longest-serving Republican senator and a figure in Alaska politics since before statehood, has been indicted on seven counts of falsely reporting hundreds of thousands of dollars in services he received from a company that helped renovate his home.

Stevens, 84, has been dogged by a federal investigation into whether he pushed for fishing legislation that also benefited his son, an Alaska lobbyist.

The job of the FDA is to pande to us, not the drug companies.

Impeachable Offense
July 27, 2008

FDA faulted over unapproved uses of medications

WASHINGTON - When a state trooper pulls over a speeding motorist, the officer usually writes out a ticket on the spot

When federal regulators catch a drug company peddling prescription medications for an unapproved use, it takes them an average of seven months to issue a warning, according to a draft report by congressional investigators. It typically takes four more months for the company to fix the problem. During that time, a lot prescriptions can be written.

But wait. McCain and Bush say their "surge" stopped the slaughter in Iraq. That's a lie. We paid the insurgents not to fight against us.

Impeachable Offense
July 25, 2008

Ex-insurgents Want More Money, or Else

The Iraqi officer leading a U.S.-financed anti-jihadist group is in no mood for small talk -- either the military gives him more money or he will pack his bags and rejoin the ranks of al-Qaeda.

"I'll go back to al-Qaeda if you stop backing the Sahwa (Awakening) groups," Col. Satar tells U.S. Lt. Matthew McKernon, as he tries to secure more funding for his men to help battle the anti-U.S. insurgents.

July 20, 2008

Leaving Iraq: Debate Shifts to When

Republican political strategists have long said privately what Republican candidates for President only hinted at publicly. No one can win the White House in 2008 by campaigning to continue an unending war in Iraq.

"The sentence has to have the word 'leaving' in it," said Grover Norquist, the influential Republican operative, at a breakfast meeting in June of 2007. "Doesn't mean you have to leave tomorrow, doesn't mean you have to surrender, doesn't mean you have to cut and run, but the articulation of the policy needs to be clear to the American people that we are not staying there indefinitely and that there is a 'doing something' and a 'leaving.' "

At the time, the major Republican candidates for President, save John McCain, had already begun to dull the edges on their support for President Bush's war policy. When asked about the war, Mike Huckabee would talk about the strain on the Arkansas National Guard. Mitt Romney would say he wanted the troops home "as soon as possible." Rudy Giuliani speculated openly that the so-called surge might fail, saying "we have to be ready for that."

Big Oil tells us they need tax cuts so they can explore for new oil. They lied. They're using their record profits to buy back stock instead. Shame on them for lying. Shame on Congress for believing them and not holding them in contempt.

July 22, 2008

Big Oil Splurges On Investors

It's good news for shareholders, including mutual funds and retirement plans for millions of Americans, but no help to drivers making drastic cutbacks to offset the high cost of fuel.

The five biggest international oil companies plowed about 55 percent of the cash they made from their businesses into stock buybacks and dividends last year, up from 30 percent in 2000 and just 1 percent in 1993, according to Rice University's James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy.

The percentage they spend to find new deposits of fossil fuels has remained flat for years, in the mid-single digits.

Impeachable Offense
July 22, 2008

Judge bars torture evidence from war crimes trial

GUANTANAMO BAY NAVAL BASE, Cuba (AP) - The judge in the first American war crimes trial since World War II barred evidence on Monday that interrogators obtained from Osama bin Laden's driver, ruling he was subjected to "highly coercive" conditions in Afghanistan.

But Judge Keith Allred, a Navy captain, left the door open for the prosecution to use statements Salim Hamdan made at Guantanamo, despite defense claims that all his statements were tainted by alleged abuse including sleep deprivation and solitary confinement.

Obama's approval rating is higher than Bush and McCain combined. In fact, Obama's approval rating is 23% higher than Lieberman.

June 29 – July 3, 2008

The Jewish Vote (.doc)

Q.11 Now, we would like to rate your feelings toward some people and organizations, with one hundred meaning a VERY WARM, FAVORABLE feeling; zero meaning a VERY COLD, UNFAVORABLE feeling; and fifty meaning not particularly warm or cold. You can use any number from zero to one hundred, the higher the number the more favorable your feelings are toward that person or organization.

                        Mean  Fav Unfav ID
11 George W. Bush        24.8  22  74  100

12 Barack Obama          57.8  60  34   97

13 John McCain           39.5  34  57   95

14 Joe Lieberman         41.7  37  48   92

15 Nancy Pelosi          47.9  47  37   91

16 Democratic Party      55.3  59  33   97

17 Republican Party      29.4  23  63   90

18 Neo-Conservatives     23.6  13  58   76

19 Reverend John Hagee   15.0   7  57   65

20 Rev.  Jeremiah Wright 14.9   5  68   78

[400 Respondents]
21 (SPLIT A)
Christian Zionists       31.5  17  49   76

[400 Respondents]

Ford pays its CEO even when he fails. Where's the incentive to succeed?

July 25, 2008

Toyota, Record Profits. Ford Record Losses

TOKYO (AP) — Honda Motor Co. reported record profit for a fiscal first quarter Friday as sales growth in new markets offset the damage from a stronger yen and soaring material costs.

The results came a day after U.S. automaker Ford Motor Co. reported its worst quarterly loss ever.

Honda, Japan's No. 2 automaker, earned a better-than-expected 179.6 billion yen ($1.68 billion) in the April-June quarter, up 8.1 percent from the same period the previous year. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial had forecast 131.3 billion yen ($1.2 billion) in quarterly profit.

July 25, 2008

Chrysler to stop leasing

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Two Detroit automotive powerhouses made moves in attempt to stanch their bleeding Friday as gas-guzzling trucks and SUVs continue to sit idly on U.S. car lots.

Chrysler LLC's financial arm, Chrysler Financial, will stop offering vehicle lease options in the U.S. in order to focus more on financing vehicle purchases, according to multiple media reports Friday. Leases will no longer be an option Aug. 1. The automaker is expected to brief dealers in a conference call late Friday.

Destroying a "free press" isn't what the military or journalism should be about. The Bush White House and it's propaganda machine didn't want Americans to see the cold hard truth about this war so the war was sanitized for your protection.

Impeachable Offense
July 26, 2008

4000 US Deaths, and only a handful of public images

BAGHDAD — The case of a freelance photographer in Iraq who was barred from covering the Marines after he posted photos on the Internet of several of them dead has underscored what some journalists say is a growing effort by the American military to control graphic images from the war.

Zoriah Miller, the photographer who took images of marines killed in a June 26 suicide attack and posted them on his Web site, was subsequently forbidden to work in Marine Corps-controlled areas of the country. Maj. Gen. John Kelly, the Marine commander in Iraq, is now seeking to have Mr. Miller barred from all United States military facilities throughout the world. Mr. Miller has since left Iraq.

July 22, 2008

GOP senators scramble for lifeboats

Republican Senate leaders — terrified by the prospect of losing five or more seats in November — have freed their members to vote however they need to vote to get reelected, even if that means bucking the president or the party's leadership.

On at least four votes over the past month — Medicare, housing, the GI Bill and the Farm Bill — Republican leaders haven't even bothered whipping members to toe the party line or back President Bush's veto threats. Instead, a GOP leadership aide says leaders have told vulnerable senators that it's all right to "get well" with voters by siding with Democrats on anything but energy and national security.

July 15, 2008

Airlines Suffer Massive Loss

July 15 (Bloomberg) -- AMR Corp., whose American Airlines is the world's largest carrier, probably will post a second- quarter loss tomorrow, heralding industry losses of as much as $910 million on rising jet-fuel costs.

"The second quarter will be ugly, with a capital 'ugh,"' said Henry Harteveldt, a Forrester Research Inc. analyst in San Francisco.

An 80 percent surge in jet fuel in the past year reduced airlines' usual boost from the start of the summer travel season. U.S. carriers are grounding 433 jets and cutting about 22,000 jobs to stem 2008 losses that the Air Transport Association estimates may reach a record $13 billion.

July 22, 2008

Cost of Fannie, Freddie rescue - $25B

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The Congressional Budget Office on Tuesday estimated that a government plan to stabilize mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could cost government coffers an average of $25 billion.

The CBO said it thinks there is probably a better than 50% chance that the Treasury would not need to step in. It also said there is a 5% chance that Freddie and Fannie's losses would cost the government $100 billion.

July 18, 2008

Court Throws Out Super Bowl Fine

In a decision that clears CBS of any wrongdoing for airing the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show that featured Janet Jackson's infamous "wardrobe malfunction," a federal appeals court overturned the $550,000 fine that the Federal Communications Commission levied against the station, calling the fine arbitrary and capricious.

The decision was handed down Monday by a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, which found that the fine was unfair because the commission, in imposing it, deliberately strayed from its practice of exempting fleeting indecency in broadcast programming from punishment. The commission also erred, the judges ruled, by holding CBS responsible for the actions of Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake, who were characterized by the judges as "independent contractors hired for the limited purposed of the Halftime Show."

July 23, 2008

Speculators aren't driving up oil prices

As Congress debates how to curtail the role of speculators and rein in rising oil prices, a U.S. government task force said Tuesday that it had so far found no evidence that those investors are systematically pushing up the cost of energy.

Instead, in an interim report made public on Tuesday, the task force said that its research "does not support the hypothesis that the activity of these groups is driving prices higher."

July 25, 2008

Americans are conserving energy with fervor

New data indicate Americans are conserving energy with fervor.

The Energy Information Administration reported Wednesday that gasoline stocks posted a 2.8 million-barrel build in the week ended July 18, exceeding the 200,000-barrel increase forecast by analysts. In the past two weeks, the price of crude oil has fallen 14% from its New York Mercantile Exchange record close of $145.29 reached July 3, in part due to weakening demand. Thursday on the Nymex, crude oil for September delivery rose $1.05 per barrel, or 0.8%, to settle at $125.49.

When the previous governor was recalled there was talk of balancing the budget. That never happened. Once again the problem seems simple...Americans want their government to do things but we've come to understand that we don't have to pay for it. This nonsense started under Reagan and the problem won't go away until we identify that Reagan's ideas were wrong for the country. On the national level we now have nearly $10 trillion of debt. Most of it was created under Reagan and Bush 43 - two fiscal conservatives.

July 25, 2008

Another California Budget Crisis

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is now threatening to pay thousands of state employees the federal minimum wage of $6.55 an hour until lawmakers reach a deal on California's overdue state budget. It's an empty threat, and the governor knows it. But it's good for a few headlines.

And if Schwarzenegger were REALLY serious about getting a budget, as the state leader of the Republican Party, he would have the Sergeant at Arms for the Assembly and Senate drag back every Republican to the Capitol, sit them down and start twisting arms. If that didn't work, he could make an announcement to identify those lawmakers who were stonewalling negotiations and let them offer their own explanations.

Bush's war in Iraq was supposed to make the Middle East a safer place. He was wrong. Can the US stop Iran or any other country from gaining technology it sees in it's best interest, especially with Israel armed with nuclear weapons? No, so why bother? Since we let Israel have nukes, we can't morally object to Iran having them.

July 26, 2008

Iran now has 6,000 centrifuges for uranium

TEHRAN, Iran - President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Saturday that Iran now possesses 6,000 centrifuges, a significant increase in the number of uranium-enriching machines in its nuclear program, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.

A total of 3,000 centrifuges is the commonly accepted figure for a nuclear enrichment program that surpasses the experimental stage and can be used as a platform for a full industrial-scale program that could churn out enough material for dozens of nuclear weapons.

Iran says it plans to move toward large-scale uranium enrichment that ultimately will involve 54,000 centrifuges.

These are two new banks that were not the list of possible bank closures, which was released earlier this month.

July 26, 2008

U.S. regulators seize two more banks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. regulators took over two banks on Friday and sold them to Mutual of Omaha Bank, the sixth and seventh bank failures this year as financial institutions struggle with a housing bust and credit crunch.

Two weeks after the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp seized IndyMac Bancorp Inc, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency said it closed First National Bank of Nevada and First Heritage Bank NA of California.

First National, characterized as undercapitalized, had total assets of $3.4 billion and $3 billion in deposits. First Heritage, described as critically undercapitalized, had assets of $254 million and $233 million in deposits, regulators said.

Either the Navy officer is uninformed or he lied under oath. Either way it's now on the record, a legal record, that the fourth plane was shot down. Is it true...it doesn't seem like anyone cares.

July 22, 2008

Fourth Plane Shot Down

"If they hadn't shot down the fourth plane it would've hit the dome," Stone, a Navy officer, said in his opening remarks.

The tribunal's chief prosecutor, Col. Lawrence Morris, later explained that Stone was quoting Hamdan in evidence that will be presented at trial. Morris declined to say if the "dome" was a reference to the U.S. Capitol.

"Virtually no one knew the intended target, but the accused knew," Stone said.

Addington didn't believe in the Constitution, neither did Cheney or Bush. But what about Ms. Mayer? She sat back and watched her boss take Addinton's advice and violate the Constitution. Why hasn't she been disbarred yet?

Impeachable Offense
July 18, 2008

"He doesn't believe in the Constitution."

Very few voters are aware of Mr. Addington's existence, much less what he stands for. But he was the legal linchpin of the administration's Marquis de Sade approach to battling terrorism. In the view of Mr. Addington and his acolytes, anything and everything that the president authorized in the fight against terror — regardless of what the Constitution or Congress or the Geneva Conventions might say — was all right. That included torture, rendition, warrantless wiretapping, the suspension of habeas corpus, you name it.

This is the mind-set that gave us Abu Ghraib, Guantánamo and the C.I.A.'s secret prisons, known as "black sites."

Ms. Mayer wrote: "The legal doctrine that Addington espoused — that the president, as commander in chief, had the authority to disregard virtually all previously known legal boundaries if national security demanded it — rested on a reading of the Constitution that few legal scholars shared."

We give them our money when we buy their oil and they invest in US businesses. Not a bad deal if you're in the Middle East, but does US business want to depend on them for oil and money?

July 18, 2008

GE in partnership with Abu Dhabi on projects

NEW YORK (AFP) — US conglomerate General Electric announced Tuesday a joint venture with Abu Dhabi state investment firm Mubadala on "a broad range of initiatives" including commercial finance, energy research and aviation.

Under the arrangement, Mubadala plans "over time to become a long-term GE shareholder," according to a joint statement.

"The expectation is that Mubadala will become one of GE's top 10 institutional investors through the open market, as conditions allow," the statement said.

July 19, 2008

Felons say Supreme Court's ruling means they can own guns

WASHINGTON - Twice convicted of felonies, James Francis Barton Jr. faces charges of violating a federal law barring felons from owning guns after police found seven pistols, three shotguns and five rifles at his home south of Pittsburgh.

As a defense, Barton and several other defendants in federal gun cases argue that last month's Supreme Court ruling allows them to keep loaded handguns at home for self-defense.

GOP candidates aren't supposed to know anything about the economy. Reagan and Bush 41 were clueless, Bush 43 continued the policies of Reagan - tax cuts, lots of spending and mountains of debt.

July 20, 2008

It's the Economic Stupidity, Stupid

THE best thing to happen to John McCain was for the three network anchors to leave him in the dust this week while they chase Barack Obama on his global Lollapalooza tour. Were voters forced to actually focus on Mr. McCain's response to our spiraling economic crisis at home, the prospect of his ascension to the Oval Office could set off a panic that would make the IndyMac Bank bust in Pasadena look as merry as the Rose Bowl.

"In a time of war," Mr. McCain said last week, "the commander in chief doesn't get a learning curve." Fair enough, but he imparted this wisdom in a speech that was almost a year behind Mr. Obama in recognizing Afghanistan as the central front in the war against Al Qaeda. Given that it took the deadliest Taliban suicide bombing in Kabul since 9/11 to get Mr. McCain's attention, you have to wonder if even General Custer's learning curve was faster than his.