Dearest Readers, later today Prissy and Betty Buckaneer will be doing a pilot for our new radio show, The Progressive Revolution
Prissy will podcast as soon as the tech guys record it, later this evening or tomorrow, it should be posted. While it will be live today in Columbus, the new FM station doesn't have much range yet-but with the podcast online, that won't matter much.
Financial Times BAE faces fresh congressional scrutiny
Congress is renewing its scrutiny of BAE Systems in the wake of allegations that the British defence company bribed a former Saudi ambassador to Washington to secure valuable defence contracts.
The department of justice is also considering whether it should open a full-blown inquiry into whether BAE has violated US anti-bribery laws in relation to its international arms deals.
That should be interesting...
Sure it will, from Reuters Top general says his Iraq report will be candid
The top U.S. commander in Iraq said on Sunday he will have a good idea in September how well the troop increase has worked and will be able to provide a forthright report to the policy makers in Washington.
"We can provide a reasonable snapshot of the situation at that time and how things have gone in the surge, both in the security and then in the political and economic arenas," Gen. David Petraeus said on "Fox News Sunday."
President George W. Bush has said Petraeus' September report would be important in deciding the future of U.S. involvement in Iraq, but some in his administration have started to play down its significance to relieve some of the anticipation among members of Congress.
General Sanchez actually does give "candid" reports, now that he is no longer on Dubya's payroll...
“Here, the Government has introduced sufficient evidence to support an inference of deliberate avoidance,” the judge ruled at the trial in Chicago.
Her decision will make it harder for Lord Black to beat US charges that he looted $60 million (£30 million) in bogus “noncompete” payments and perks – including a $62,000 surprise birthday party for his wife Barbara Amiel and a trip for two on the corporate jet to Bora Bora – from the newspaper empire that he ran.
“I don’t think he is walking out of this without a few years,” said Leonard Cavise, a law professor at DePaul University.
Lord Black has loudly protested his innocence in the press, drawing a rebuke from the judge when he declared in one interview that the prosecutors’ case was “hanging like a toilet seat around their necks”. But the normally loquacious peer curtly declined a formal invitation from the judge to testify on his behalf as his lawyers put on an unexpectedly brief defence, lasting only a few days. The only words that he has spoken in court during the three-month trial are: “I decline to exercise my right to testify.”
Patrick Fitzgerald's Chicago office is also prosecuting m'lord -he's got problems on a global scale. This guy will get his goose cooked, much like Scooter. Rich guys are the worst bad guys, for sure.
What motivated the 9/11 hijackers? See testimony most didn't. Watch Lee Hamilton cut off the FBI agent giving him an answer he didn't like.
Page 147 of the 911 Commission Report: Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) first came to the attention of U.S. law enforcement as a result of his cameo role in the first World Trade Center bombing. According to KSM, he learned of Ramzi Yousef 's intention to launch an attack inside the United States in 1991 or 1992, when Yousef was receiving explosives training in Afghanistan. During the fall of 1992, while Yousef was building the bomb he would use in that attack, KSM and Yousef had numerous telephone conversations during which Yousef discussed his progress and sought additional funding. On November 3, 1992, KSM wired $660 from Qatar to the bank account of Yousef 's co-conspirator, Mohammed Salameh. KSM does not appear to have contributed any more substantially to this operation.
Yousef 's instant notoriety as the mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Cen- ter bombing inspired KSM to become involved in planning attacks against the United States. By his own account, KSM's animus toward the United States stemmed not from his experiences there as a student, but rather from his vio- lent disagreement with U.S. foreign policy favoring Israel.
He didn't say violent disagreement with American freedoms...
The April request from the Electronic Frontier Foundation asked the FBI to turn over documents related to its misuse of National Security Letters, self-issued subpoenas that don't need a judge's approval and which can get financial, phone and internet records. Recipients of the letters are forbidden by law from ever telling anyone other than their lawyer that they received the request. Though initially warned initially to use this power sparingly, FBI agents issued more than 47,000 in 2005, more than half of which targeted Americans. Information obtained from the requests, which need only be certified by the agency to be "relevant" to an investigation, are dumped into a data-mining warehouse for perpetuity.
An Inspector General report in March found rampant errors in the small sample of NSLs examined and systemic underreporting of the powers usage to Congress. The report also found that agents issued more than 700 "expedited" letters, some containing materially false sworn statements. These letters had no legal basis and essentially asked companies to turn over data by pretending there was an emergency in order to get the data necessary to get a proper NSL. One former FBI agent says its clear the FBI violated the law.
Now the Justice Department must turn over 2,500 pages of documents a month to the EFF, including information on cozy surveillance contracts between the FBI and telephone companies and information on how data captured by NSLs were put into the FBI's massive data mining warehouse.
The Justice Department told the court that there were more than 100,000 potentially responsive documents and that ten people are working full time on filling the request for documents. Look out for a run on thick, black magic markers in D.C.
Oh yes indeed, we want to know it all...let the lawsuits begin!
Video of the Marine, loyal Bushies and the pentagon wish to make an example of. Interesting that cowards who ducked out of Vietnam are pushing for this...Sgt. Liam Madden-Justified Dissent
Patrick Fitzgerald who told Prissy his blog is a fake! Duh, Mr. Fitzgerald, Prissy's blog is a fake too. Public Service - Good Medicine
Since graduating from Amherst College 25 years ago, Patrick Fitzgerald ’82 has proved himself one of the nation’s best prosecutors, and one of its most remarkable citizens.
The Office of Special Counsel, which has already recommended that GSA chief Lurita Doan be suspended or fired for participating in partisan activities while on the job, is now moving forward with its investigation of nearly 20 other administration agencies.
Eighteen agencies have been asked by the Office of Special Counsel to preserve electronic information dating back to January 2001 as part of its government wide investigation into alleged violations of the law that limits political activity in federal agencies.
The OSC task force investigating the claims has asked agencies, including the General Services Administration, to preserve all e-mail records, calendar information, phone logs and hard drives going back to the beginning of the Bush administration. The task force is headed by deputy OSC special counsel James Byrne.
The White House has admitted that roughly 20 agencies have received a PowerPoint briefing created by Karl Rove’s office “that included slides listing Democratic and Republican seats the White House viewed as vulnerable in 2008, a map of contested Senate seats and other information on 2008 election strategy.”
This is about Ms. Doan's deed as a "loyal Bushie."
Gov Exec Magazine GSA chief spars with House panel Democrats
Waxman said Doan cannot be an effective leader because she "has abused the trust of her employees, [and] threatened to deny [employees] promotions and bonuses for telling the truth." He also argued she has lost the public's confidence by politicizing GSA.
House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., on Tuesday said President Bush should fire or suspend Doan immediately. And in April, two Democratic senators called for her to resign in light of "multiple ethical lapses."
The head of the Office of Special Counsel, an independent investigative agency, said in a four-page letter delivered to President Bush late last week that Doan should be "be disciplined to the fullest extent" for violating the Hatch Act and for failing to cooperate fully and honestly with OSC's investigation into the violation.
OSC concluded that Doan violated the Hatch Act's prohibition against using her authority to interfere with or affect an election through her role in a Jan. 26 meeting at GSA headquarters. After a presentation by White House official Scott Jennings, Doan allegedly asked a question about helping Republican candidates, though accounts of her exact wording vary. Doan has maintained that she does not remember making such a comment and has argued that the OSC report is flawed and omits critical evidence.
Federal Times more about Doan 2005 e-mail shows Doan record of promises to assist GOP
Before her appointment to head the General Services Administration, Lurita Doan pledged to use a prospective position atop another agency to help the Republican Party. In a draft of a May 2005 e-mail to a Republican official pitching her credentials to head the Small Business Administration, Doan, who is black, wrote: “I believe that the part[y] has a unique opportunity to make about a 5 percent swing of black votes to the GOP. One of the largest concentrations of wealth and influence lies in the black business community of small black business owners who represent the participants in various SBA programs.”
The Office of the Special Counsel reported to President Bush on June 8 that Doan violated the Hatch Act at a January meeting of GSA political employees. At that meeting, a White House political aide gave a presentation on congressional races that Republicans planned to target in 2008. After the briefing, Doan, a Bush appointee, said something like, “How can we help our candidates,” according to multiple witnesses.
Doan has denied partisan bias and said she is not interested in politics or political polling. But Democratic members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said at a hearing today that the e-mail refuted those claims.
FreePress Radio US-IRAN: New War Rhetoric Undercuts Iraq Talks
WASHINGTON, Jun 12 (IPS) - U.S. Senator Joseph Lieberman’s call for cross-border raids into Iran appears to be the culmination of a two-week long campaign by proponents of war to put the military option centre-stage in the U.S. debate over Iran once more.
The immediate effect of reigniting the let’s-bomb-Iran discussions is the undercutting of the recently initiated U.S.-Iran talks over Iraq, which in turn will cause the military confrontation with Iran to be viewed in a new light.
Senator Lieberman out-hawked the George W. Bush administration on the television news show "Face the Nation" this past Sunday by calling for "aggressive military action against the Iranians," including "a strike over the border into Iran." Repeating by now all but abandoned accusations by the Bush administration of Iranian complicity in the killing of U.S. soldiers in Iraq, the Connecticut senator’s comments caused a storm in the U.S. media Monday. Suddenly, the military option against Iran was once more at the centre of the U.S.’s Iran debate.
Chico Beat, sent by a military Dad. Happy Father's Day, Tim Kahlor, MFSO Orange County, CA. One of the best military dads Prissy has known in our efforts to end the war. A Letter to a Child Not Yet Born To be delivered in the year 2057, to an American soldier stationed at a base somewhere in Iraq
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush would like to see a lengthy U.S. troop presence in Iraq like the one in South Korea to provide stability... the White House said on Wednesday. The United States has had thousands of U.S. troops in South Korea to guard against a North Korean invasion for 50 years.
Dear Pfc. ___________. Perhaps you are 18, maybe 19, born in 2038, or 2039, a child not yet born to a child not yet born. If the teaching of history is as bad in your time as it was in ours, you may not have heard of the man who is responsible for your presence in Iraq, so I will begin this letter-sent through space and across time-by telling you that you are where you are because an American president named George W. Bush told the American people that Iraq had stockpiled weapons that were an immediate threat to the security of the American homeland. This happened before you were born, of course, and before your parents were born, too, so it will perhaps surprise you to know that decisions made by a man so very long ago were instrumental in determining the course of your life.
It was that man, George W. Bush, who also told the nation that Iraq had been responsible for an attack on American soil that brought down two skyscrapers in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001, and knocked out a chunk of the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. that same day. You probably read about these events when you were in middle school. They are as far removed from you in time as the Eisenhower administration was from your grandfather's time. (Eisenhower was an American president a hundred years remote from your own days.)
Anyway, because of that attack and our fear of those weapons, we launched an invasion of Iraq, a hi-tech pounding the military strategists called "shock and awe," designed to scare the bejesus out of the Iraqis and pave the way for our occupation of the place. We did not call it an "occupation," of course. We called it a "liberation," and we were told that the Iraqis would greet us accordingly.
Reuters-still suffering the effects of Vietnam. Oh but George Bush isn't...Mothers hope U.S.-Vietnam Agent Orange efforts help
"It is better to die immediately than to die this way," said Tu, who earns 2 million dong ($124) a month as a night-time cleaner at a school.
Phong, his back bent and his left arm shortened, stands up by leaning against the cot railing. He makes unintelligible noises and does not understand when he is spoken to, his parents said.
In 1975, the final year of the U.S. war in Vietnam, Phong's father Nhu Van Phuc spent time at two places now identified by scientists as "hot spots" for dioxin, a small compound within the "agent orange" herbicide that is one of the most toxic known.
The United States maintains there is no scientifically proven link between the wartime spraying and more than three million people Vietnam says are disabled by dioxin over three generations.
The Local, Sweden's English newspaper Former DN Editor: 'This ruling damages freedom of expression'
Svante Nycander, former editor of Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, gives his view after local politician Dahn Pettersson is fined for hate speech. Pettersson claimed in a motion that 95 percent of all heroin that comes into Sweden comes via Kosovo.
"The ruling in Malmö District Court is damaging to freedom of expression. Many will take it as proof that the authorities are afraid of uncomfortable truths, and that lacking reasoned counter-arguments they punish those who speak plainly.
And..."This is the result of changes at various points in the clause on Agitation against a National or Ethnic Group. The ban has developed in such a way that it inhibits not only prejudiced statements, but also nearly all discussion of sensitive issues that interest a large proportion of the public. Such a law thwarts its own purpose.
Know of fraud, or where the money for Iraq went? Get it off your chest here.
The purpose of the Government Accountability Office's FraudNET is to facilitate the reporting of allegations of fraud, waste, abuse, or mismanagement of federal funds.
If you want to report such allegations, you may do so by filling out a FraudNET Form or by using one of these other methods: * Send allegations via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org * Send a fax to FraudNet at 202-512-3086 * Write to:
GAO FraudNET 441 G Street NW Washington, D.C. 20548
TPM Cafe A Letter to the RNC from former CIA Officers by Larry Johnson
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, who declared: As you may recall, for some inexplicable reason, the CIA sent the husband of one of its employees to Niger on a sensitive mission. She had suggested it. He came back to the U.S. and proceeded to publicly blast the administration. Naturally, everyone wanted to know "who is this guy?" and "why was he sent to Niger?" Just as naturally, the fact that he was married to Valerie Plame at the CIA was leaked.
Larry goes on to write "This is not an issue of Republican versus Democrat. The signatories of this letter include registered Republicans, Democrats, and Independents."
E&P Why the 'L.A. Times' Called for Iraq Pullout by Greg Mitchell who finally gets it. What Greg, are your own little darlings getting uncomfortably close to draft age? Better late than never or 50 years from now, like Korea...
(June 13, 2007) -- “I see no moral reason to wait until fall,” Jim Newton, editorial page editor at the Los Angeles Times told me earlier today. “We need to evaluate in real time. That’s part of the motivation for the editorial this week. Besides Gen. Petraeus, others have a right to assess the facts as well.”
Newton was referring to an editorial in his paper on Tuesday calling for peace talks and a ceasefire in Iraq. It’s the kind of talk we heard often in relation to Vietnam and later conflicts but oddly missing in regard to Iraq. But the Times is taking all sorts of bold stands on the war these days. Six weeks ago the paper advocated – hold on to your hats – that the U.S. actually start to disengage in Iraq.
That editorial was titled simply, if eloquently, “Bring Them Home.
PBS Utube clip A must watch! BILL MOYERS JOURNAL | Listening to History
Bill Moyers reflects on a conversation between Lyndon Johnson and his National Security Advisor McGeorge Bundy that took place in 1964.
Bill Moyers blog Begging His Pardon
The line that should shame Libby forever...
One beltway insider reports that the entire community is grieving—“weighted down by the sheer, glaring unfairness” of Libby's sentence.
And there’s the rub.
None seem the least weighted down by the sheer, glaring unfairness of sentencing soldiers to repeated and longer tours of duty in a war induced by deception. It was left to the hawkish academic Fouad Ajami to state the matter baldly. In a piece published on the editorial page of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, Ajami pleaded with Bush to pardon Libby. For believing “in the nobility of this war,” wrote Ajami, Scooter Libby had himself become a “casualty”—a fallen soldier the President dare not leave behind on the Beltway battlefield.
Not a word in the entire article about the real fallen soldiers. The honest-to-God dead, and dying, and wounded. Not a word about the chaos or the cost. Even as the calamity they created worsens, all they can muster is a cry for leniency for one of their own who lied to cover their tracks.
There are contrarian voices: “This is an open and shut case of perjury and obstruction of justice,” said Pat Buchanan. “The Republican Party stands for the idea that high officials should not be lying to special investigators.” From the former Governor of Virginia, James Gilmore, a staunch conservative, comes this verdict: “If the public believes there’s one law for a certain group of people in high places and another law for regular people, then you will destroy the law and destroy the system.”
Yikes, Prissy just agreed with Pat Buchanan and other female disrespectors...Bill Moyers is one of the best journalists in America. That's why they put him on PBS, so no one else will know what he is saying.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes.-- Henry David Thoreau
The surface of American society is covered with a layer of democratic paint, but from time to time one can see the old aristocratic colours breaking through.--Alexis de Tocqueville, French historian and author of Democracy in America(July 29, 1805 – April 16, 1859)
If liberty and equality, as is thought by some, are chiefly to be found in democracy, they will be best attained when all persons alike share in the government to the utmost.--Aristotle
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.--CS Lewis
There is one safeguard known generally to the wise, which is an advantage and security to all, but especially to democracies as against despots. What is it? Distrust.--Demosthenes