"Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages" -Thomas A. Edison

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

US Paying Iraqi Press to Run Favorable Stories

"As part of an information offensive in Iraq, the U.S. military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to publish stories written by American troops in an effort to burnish the image of the U.S. mission in Iraq."

Robert Sheer's latest: "So, it is mission impossible that Bush has accomplished: A terminally inept U.S. occupation of Iraq now threatens to make the despot we overthrew look good by comparison.

What Allawi (Iraqi Prime Minister) is decrying is the brutal behavior of new security forces empowered by the U.S. invasion but beholden, according to most reports, to Shiite religious parties intent on controlling Iraq. To accomplish their mission, they’re using the kind of “ethnic cleansing” terror seen so recently in Rwanda and the Balkans. "

From Crooks and Liars: Entertaining video of Denver protesters. Their message was actually well covered by CNN.
Video-WMP Video-QT

"The People of Fallujah Love Cindy Sheehan" declared Farouk Abd-Muhammed, a candidate for National Assembly in Dec. 15 elections.....

This article/note was found on Robert Sheer's new site: Check it out. Seems outstanding. Go Robert go! To H*&# with the MSM!

The photo was taken at the US Naval Academy. The poor cadets. So tired. They're waiting for Bush to arrive and give one of his facinating speeches.

The Spoils of War: DHB CEO has a Multimillion Dollar Bat Mitzvah for his daughter

"The party cost an estimated $10 million, including the price of corporate jets to ferry the performers to and from. Also on the bill were The Eagles' Don Henley and Joe Walsh performing with Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks; DJ AM (Nicole Richie's fiance); rap diva Ciara and, sadly perhaps (except that he received an estimated $250,000 for the job), Kenny G blowing on his soprano sax as more than 300 guests strolled and chatted into their pre-dinner cocktails."

DHB Industries is the company that made the faulty body armor vests. 18,000 are being recalled by the Army and Marines. So sad....., but......, fear not, they also just got rewarded for their incompetence with a new 30 million dollar contract for more vests! Maybe a medal of freedom award is in the works?

Monday, November 28, 2005

Another One Bites the Dust: Randy Cunningham Resigns and Admits Taking Bribes

Here is his apology for being a crook and getting caught(pdf file). He suggests that religion will become a bigger part of his life and help him find a place in heaven despite his crooked ways.

Why Chalabi?

It has been frustrating to see Ahmed Chalbi welcomed in Washington DC with such royal fanfare. He has been installed as head of the Iraq Energy Council despite being under investigation for espionage (sharing classified information with Iran). He has also been convicted of embezzlement by Jordon and......he is one of the chief sources of phoney information about Iraq's WMD threat. The link to a DailyKos contributor is fairly comprehensive and the answer not too surprizing: OIL. Here is a link to a pasted version of the post in case the above link ceases to work.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

CraigsList Founder May Launch New Online News Project

Finally, the beginning of a wide reaching 'peoples media?'

"Newmark also said coverage of the Iraq war and the press' involvement in the Valerie Plame case had damaged American journalism.
As for his new online venture, Newmark offered few details, but implied that it would employ Web technology to allow readers to determine what the major news stories would be."

Friday, November 25, 2005

Cindy Sheehan Returns to Crawford

Cindy's letter to W:

My family is spending our 2nd Thanksgiving without Casey thanks to you and your lies. I am spending the day crying on a plane on my way to come to Crawford to again ask you for a meeting......"

20,000 Demonstrate Against US Military Torture Training Center
Not covered at all by MSM. Hard to confirm.
"Some 20,000 people, the vast majority of them college and high school students, demonstrated Saturday and Sunday outside the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia, demanding the shutdown of the Western Hemispheric Institute for Security Cooperation, the new nameplate of the School of the Americas, a notorious US training center which has educated two generations of Latin American military dictators and torturers."

U.S. Nears 1000th Execution Since 1977
"Since 1973, 122 prisoners have been freed from death row. The vast majority of those cases came during the last 15 years, since the use of DNA evidence became widespread. While there is no official proof an innocent person has been executed, opponents of the death penalty say the number of prisoners whose convictions have been reversed should fuel skepticism. "

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Crawford Protests Continue: 12 arrested for camping in a ditch outside W's Crawford ranch

Buzzflash pointed out the irony of W going to China to 'spread democracy,' while suppressing free speech in his, so-called 'democratic homeland.' The man being arrested in the photograph is 74 yrs old. What a great use of our tax dollars.

"The group had pitched six tents along the road in defiance of new local bans on roadside camping and parking. Many in the group held up signs, including one that said "Give me liberty or give me a ditch."

Jose Padilla indicted as 'criminal defendant' rather than 'enemy combatant'
It only took the Bush Administration 3 years to figure this out. Or........, has W 'spent all his capital?"

"Many legal experts expected the court to take the case and resolve the issue of presidential authority.
One staunch defender of the administration said the dramatic move pointed to the Justice Department's possible loss of confidence in the enemy-combatant case."

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Earth to America, a Comedy Special to Stop Global Warming - aired by TBS on November 20th

This event was wonderful! I feel so strongly about this, that if you want a copy, I will send it to you as long as I am financially and physically capable (poor quality though :( ). I was brought to tears of joy, pain, pride and hope. Those who participated were indescribably entertaining. It is unfortunate that the PR wasn't better. I only learned about this show the night before on the radio: Larry David was being interviewed by Robert Kennedy Jr. and Mike Papantonio on their weekend radio show: Ring of Fire. Wonderful interview and also, highly recommended. More people should have known about this event! As I want to feel like I'm doing my part, let me know if you want a copy of the show and specify VHS or DVD.

The show requested that viewers consider signing their petition at:

Finally, it was conceived and produced by Larry's wife, Laurie David.

Monday, November 21, 2005

David Sirota speculates that Condi Rice might be at the heart of the Plame leak.

"Looks like I may have been right about Rice
Back in July I speculated that Condoleezza Rice may be at the center of the Wilson/Plame leak. Now it seems like that speculation may, in fact, have been right on. While she is denying her role - the fact that she feels compelled to offer a public defense today should tell us something: namely, the sharks are circling around her and her former deputy, Stephen Hadley. ..."

CIA Veterans Condem Torture - excellent, informative article by the National Journal

"From 1972 to 1975, Frank Snepp was the CIA's top interrogator in Saigon, where he choreographed elaborate, protracted sessions with Nguyen Van Tai and, at one point, seven other senior Vietcong captives. To the question of whether torture or abusive behavior by interrogators is justified, Snepp's answer is unequivocally no. And the fact that this point isn't understood at the agency today, Snepp says, is a sign of serious problems. "

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Over and over I recall the voices of the past telling me that the Iraq invasion was important because Saadam is/was a ruthless dictator who tortured people. I remain frustrated that those same voices, the voices who supported W's evil war, now remain silent. Are they not let down by the numerous revelations that W is, in fact, engaged and associated with torture styles as horrific as those used by Saadam? Now that the basis for the war has been proven false and over 100,000 Iraqi civilians , 428 US contractors and 2281 US and coalition troops have been killed , doesn't that body pile count for a tragedy certainly as gruesome as those committed by Saadam? The irony of the US committing torture in Saadam's torture prison! Have we become the enemy? How could we let this happen! Where are those voices that supported the invasion and continue to haunt? How do they breathe?

How many more will have to die? Here is a powerpoint/video presentation that asks the same question. It takes a little while to get into it, but then, the impact is strong.

I just couldn't resist posting the above image of W. This is our so-called, 'leader' making a 'W-style,' dignified impression in China. Found it posted in 2 places: Today in Iraq and Daily Kos.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

The Ax Begins to Fall on the Abramoff Gang Could this threaten the very structure of the GOP political control in DC? The Abramoff associate and former Delay aide, Michael Scanlon (pictured to the right) has flipped and agreed to testify in criminal matters relating to Abramoff. Unfolding.......

Intersting outline of food freebies for Abramoff's 'special' friends: A Seat at Abramoff's Table

Did Rummy Turn Against W on the Iraq War? Little by little, W's gang known for its allegiance starts looking out for themselves?

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Amid the hullabaloo of Cheney's screaming, one of my favorite bloggers (Brainshrub), just pointed out that the majority of Democrats in Congress, voted against the war in Iraq! Check out his blog as it does a great job of linking the hypocrisy.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Vine Deloria, Jr. 1933-2005

A spirit dedicated to truth with a beautiful, strong voice. He was a personal inspiration and will be missed.

"Literature on Indians provides no clues to understanding the present or remembering the past. Much contemporary literature is a thinly disguised romanticism that looks at Indians as the last and best spiritual hope for a society disheartened and disorganized."
~Vine Deloria, Jr. (Standing Rock Sioux) American Indians, American Justice

Wikipedia biography/bibliography

Best known for "Custer Died For Your Sins"

Huffington Post points out:

Bush, Schwarznegger Flee to Biggest Red State...

"The governor was scheduled to appear Tuesday with former President George H.W. Bush at a conference on energy and sustainable development. Schwarzenegger is to travel later this week to Shanghai and Hong Kong."

Luscious, Corporate Tax Holiday

"The tax break, passed by Congress last year as part of the American Jobs Creation Act, lets American companies bring foreign-held profits back to the United States this year at a discount of up to 85 percent off the normal tax rate. So far, nearly 100 companies have announced repatriations totaling more than $200 billion, all of which will be eligible for the cut-rate of 5.25 percent, instead of the usual top rate of 35 percent. As its critics warned at the outset, the so-called tax holiday has proved to be a bigger gift to shareholders than to employees and job seekers. "

Sunday, November 13, 2005

From Buzzflash: Weak President Plagiarizes His Own Speech

Video: Keith Olbermann exposes conservative hypocrisy: Pat Roberts, Bill O'Reilly, Rick Santorum.

Robert Scheer Fired from LA Times No explanation given. His work will now appear on the Huffington Post.

Liars: FEMA Still Hasn't Reopened No-Bid Contracts!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Yahoooooo!!!!! No Drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge!!!

We can, however, be assured that the insatiably hungry money mongrels will continue their efforts to pillage the area, but..... at least we've achieved a breather for a year. The linked artcle is an opinion from Whitehorse, Yukon.

"Though Bagnell said he doesn’t see the battle as over, he added it is an “exciting day.”“This is the first time the House of Representatives has ever voted against drilling. It shows lobbying can have a huge effect and is on the radar in the U.S.”

Federal Legislation May Let Big Telecom Highjack the Internet

"The feds are holding hearings today on a bill that could essentially allow big Telcos to hijack the Internet. The law would regulate Internet Protocol and broadband services, and it would let the big providers block services and net access, and possibly worse as well."

Are You Infected With Sony-BMG's Rootkit?

"As we've mentioned before, Sony-BMG has been using copy-protection technology called XCP in its recent CDs. You insert your CD into your Windows PC, click "agree" in the pop up window, and the CD automatically installs software that uses rootkit techniques to cloak itself from you."

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

White Phosphorus

Slowly but surely, information about the use of White Phosphorus by the United States is coming to public attention. DailyKos has a link to the pdf file of the March edition of Field Artillary Magazine which gives a synopsis of the combat techniques used in Falluja. This included the use of White Phosphorus (aka 'Willy Pete'). This week the Italian state broadcaster has aired a video account of its use.

"b. White Phosphorous. WP proved to be an effective and versatile munition. We used it for screening missions at two breeches and, later in the fight, as a potent psychological weapon against the insurgents in trench lines and spider holes when we could not get effects on them with HE. We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out.
c. Hexachloroethane Zinc (HC) Smoke..."

Monday, November 07, 2005

Bush Declares: "We Do Not Torture"

Uh, what is depicted in the photograph? Why is W so against an amendment that prohibits torture?

"Bush on Monday defended U.S. interrogation practices and called the treatment of terrorism suspects lawful. "We do not torture," Bush declared in response to reports of secret
CIA prisons overseas."

Cover-up? From WaPo 10/22/05

"Two contractors who were not killed in the initial firing were dragged from their vehicle, and one was shot in the back of the head, the newspaper said. The crowd "doused the other with petrol and set him alight. Barefoot children, yelping in delight, piled straw on to the screaming man's body to stoke the flames," according to the report."

This seems worse than the burning of the contractors last year. At least those contractors were dead before they were publically desecrated.

From Kos, If the CA Election Were Held Today

"SurveyUSA. 11/4-6. Likely voters. MoE 2.2%. (10/29-31 results)

Prop 73 -- Proposition 73 requires that physicians notify the parent of a pregnant minor at least 48 hours before performing an abortion. If the special election were today, and you were standing in the voting booth right now, would you vote Yes on Proposition 73? Or would you vote No?
Yes 51 (55)No 47 (44)

Prop 74 -- Proposition 74 extends the probationary period for new teachers from 2 years to 5 years, and makes it easier to dismiss teachers with unsatisfactory performance evaluations. If the special election were today, would you vote Yes on Proposition 74? Or would you vote No?
Yes 48 (49)No 51 (50)

Prop 75 -- Proposition 75 prohibits public employee unions from using union dues for political purposes without the written consent of union members. If the special election were today, would you vote Yes on Proposition 75? Or would you vote no?
Yes 45 (50)No 54 (49)

Prop 76 -- Proposition 76 limits growth in state spending so that it does not exceed recent growth in state revenues. The Governor would be granted new authority to reduce state spending, [including school funding,] during certain fiscal situations. If the special election were today, would you vote Yes on Proposition 76? Or would you vote no?
Yes 39 (49)No 59 (49)

Prop 77 -- Proposition 77 changes the way California draws boundaries for Congressional and legislative districts. District boundaries would be drawn by a panel of retired judges and approved by voters in a statewide election. If the special election were today, would you vote Yes on 77? Or would you vote no?
Yes 41 (42)No 56 (56)

Huge sample size, and all of Arnold's propositions trending toward defeat. Still, the numbers here are more friendly to the "Yes" side than the final CPI and Field (PDF) results. We'll find out soon enough who scored the best numbers.
Also, note how SUSA played along with Mystery Pollster's wishes to use one of these questions as a case study on how a poll's wording could impact the results. Pretty cool."

I think the numbers are too close for comfort. I am surprised and dismayed. Scary.

'A' Church singled out for Tax-Exempt Status

The W-machine must be getting desperate to chase down one single church, for a solitary sermon that basically questioned whether Jesus would support the invasion of Iraq. Interesting.

"In his sermon, Regas, who from the pulpit opposed both the Vietnam War and 1991's Gulf War, imagined Jesus participating in a political debate with then-candidates George W. Bush and John Kerry. Regas said that "good people of profound faith" could vote for either man, and did not tell parishioners whom to support.But he criticized the war in Iraq, saying that Jesus would have told Bush, "Mr. President, your doctrine of preemptive war is a failed doctrine. Forcibly changing the regime of an enemy that posed no imminent threat has led to disaster."

On June 9, the church received a letter from the IRS stating that "a reasonable belief exists that you may not be tax-exempt as a church. " The federal tax code prohibits tax-exempt organizations, including churches, from intervening in political campaigns and elections."

Hot Off the AP Press

Sunday, November 06, 2005

McCain Vows to Add Torture Ban to All Major Senate Legislation

A politician with a spine? It will be interesting to see if he keeps his word.

"Speaking from the Senate floor, McCain said, "If necessary - and I sincerely hope it is not - I and the co-sponsors of this amendment will seek to add it to every piece of important legislation voted on in the Senate until the will of a substantial bipartisan majority in both houses of Congress prevails. Let no one doubt our determination."

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Tit for Tat: Ron Earle asks the preciding judge, to withdraw because of political donations to Republicans.

Finally, a game of hardball.

"In an unprecedented move, Earle argued that Schraub should step aside because of campaign donations he made to Republican candidates, including Gov. Rick Perry, who was a central player in DeLay's 2003 attempt to redraw Texas congressional districts. "

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Rosa, in peace.

"Our mistreatment was just not right, and I was tired of it," writes Parks in her recent book, Quiet Strength, (ZondervanPublishingHouse, 1994). "I kept thinking about my mother and my grandparents, and how strong they were. I knew there was a possibility of being mistreated, but an opportunity was being given to me to do what I had asked of others."

by Emily Dickenson

To die--takes just a little while--
They say it doesn't hurt--
It's only fainter--by degrees--
And then--it's out of sight--

A darker Ribbon--for a Day--
A Crape upon the Hat--
And then the pretty sunshine comes--
And helps us to forget--

The absent--mystic--creature--
That but for love of us--
Had gone to sleep--
that soundest time--
Without the weariness--

Bush's Approval Rating Falls to 35%

Does this mean we should watch for another terror alert, 911, invasion/war or......pandemic? What will W do to save face?

"Bush's low job approval is far below that of some of his two-term predecessors at this point in their second terms. In November 1985, President Reagan had a 65 percent approval rating, and Bill Clinton's job approval in November 1997 was 57 percent."

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The Colbert Report

Really funny, sharp, smart show. Follows John Stewart's The Daily Show on Comedy Central.


Delay gets a new judge????!!!! Could someone please tell me why this happened? If I am not mistaken, weren't the 4 judges who ruled in W's favor in the 2000 election, clearly partisan? Since when does party affiliation make a judge ineligible to rule? Aren't judges are supposed to interpret the law, not use it to enforce their personal ideology? I know this is an ideal that is hard to enforce, but a big part of their appointment entrusts them with honesty. Delay gets his man and W his group? What do the 'people' get? Arrrrrrhhhh! Where is the media in this atrocity?

Mr. Evil Smiley(pictured above) reminds me of Tom Delay. The graphic is compliments of an upcoming documentary on Walmart: The High Cost of Low Price

Finally, many are encouraging Cindy Sheehan to run for public office

"Unlike some Greens who are pushing a Sheehan for President initiative, DeBar wants to see her move from her home state of California to run against Clinton in the New York primary next year. That way, he writes in his post, "she could force a seismic shift in the direction of the Democratic Party."