Saturday, April 30, 2011

Donald Trump's (a la Sarah Palin) Disastrous NBC Interview

by  NedSparks   at DKos   Tue Apr 19, 2011

I never thought I would say this, but Donald Trump is far more clueless when it comes to domestic and international issues than even Sarah Palin, as unbelievable as this might sound. My jaw has not left the floor following an interview conducted by Savannah Guthrie on NBC and shown on MSNBC’s The Daily Rundown this morning. During the interview, Trump ignorantly blusters his way through a series of questions regarding China, the debt ceiling, to the right to privacy.

On China:

Trump suggested that he would be able to compel China to cease and desist in the manipulation of its currency.

Guthrie: It is a sovereign nation you can’t tell China not to manipulate its currency.

Trump: If you have the right messenger (winks), they won’t be doing it for long—Let me just tell you something—

Guthrie: Seriously, you think you could just tell them—

Trump: We have the cards, yeah—They don’t have the cards; we have the cards…. My policy is very very simple. I would tell china, VERY NICELY, fellas, you’re my friend, I like you very much— I’ve made a lot of money with China, by the way— A lot of money with China. I would say we’re going to put a 25% tax on all your products coming in and that’s gonna do a number of things—Number one, as soon as they believe it’s gonna happen, they would behave so nicely, because it would destroy their economy….

On the debt ceiling:

Guthrie: The, umm, debt ceiling vote, the Republicans are saying they don’t think the debt ceiling should be raised (Trump nods head); businesses have warned there could be dire consequences.

Trump: I don’t care, I wouldn’t raise it.

Guthrie: And you know most economists say that would send the US economy back into a recession?

Trump: What do economists know? Most of them are not very smart….

Guthrie: You don’t think if—

(cross talk)

Trump: Excuse me, excuse me.

Guthrie: The US default on its obligation it would be grave for the economy?

Trump: I don’t think we’ll have to default. You’ll have to make a deal someplace…you might as well do it now.  Because if you keep raising it and raising it—Let’s keep raising it—You’ll go ten years, let’s keep raising the debt ceiling. I’d stop it right now. I’d go out, negotiate, I’d make deals….

Guthrie: (staring wide-eyed to try and make some sense out of what he is saying) who’s the deal to be made with?

Trump: Well, the President should be leading the deal, but I don’t think he’s capable enough to lead the deal.  Instead you have the Republican here (he moves his body from left to right) the Democrat—

Guthrie: (squinting her eyes slightly as she tries to zone in on his gibberish) Are you talking about a political deal?

Trump: Well ultimately, it’s all political when you get right down to it, isn’t it Savannah?


As Chuck Todd, Guthrie’s co host on the Daily Rundown, struggled to suppress his laughter after watching the segment, Guthrie wrapped up the conclusion of her interview with Trump by offering this:

One other note, I also asked Trump about whether there was a right to privacy in the constitution, this is the legal underpinning of Roe verses Wade, a hotly disputed issue amongst social Conservatives. Trump says he is now anti-abortion, but didn’t see the link between the two issues.

On the right to privacy:

Guthrie: Is there a right to privacy in the constitution?

Trump: (staring absently) ….I guess there is…I guess there is…. (This is a man who claims to be pro-life).

There is a pregnant pause as he stares at Guthrie.

Guthrie: So—

Trump: Why do you— why just out of curiosity, why do you ask that question?

Guthrie: Well, I’m just wondering how that squares with your pro-life views?

Trump: (pausing) Well, umm, it’s a pretty strange way of getting to pro-life…I mean; it’s a very unique way of asking about pro-life…. Why are you, what does that have to do with privacy? How you are…how are you equating pro-life with privacy? (this is a man who has called Barack Obama stupid).

Guthrie: (staring at Trump with a look of “Oh my, oh my”) Well, you know about the Roe V. Wade decision? 

Trump:  Yes, sure—Look, I’m for pro-life—I’m pro-life. I’ve said it. I’m very strong there and I’m strong on pro-life….

I couldn’t help staring at the television in absolute disbelief as I dropped my precious Krispy Kreme doughnut….

These embarrassing responses by Trump demonstrate the undeterred recklessness and arrogance of many on the Right who consider anyone of their ilk to be amply more qualified to occupy the White House than our current President. It has become resoundingly clear over the past two years, judging by the reception of people like Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman, and now Donald Trump that there are people in this country ready to entrust the welfare of this nation to a potted plant, rather than doing so to Barack Obama. This is loony stuff....


Not A Good Day…

  … in the neighborhood. At least, not for me.

   For those of you who are into the Linux operating systems, you who use Ubuntu probably know by now that the latest version of the o/s came out just a few days ago. I will tell you right now, that you may wish to wait at least a month before up-grading to it, as it has its problems particularly with some of the programs that you may have installed.

  I am referring to one particular piece of software that I use quite frequently, Virtualbox. For those  who have no idea what that is or does, let me explain. I run Linux Ubuntu pretty much 99% of the time on my machine. However, there are times when I need to use software on Windows 7 that has no Linux equal, such as Windows Live Writer, my blogging software. I have to restart my laptop out of Linux and then bring up Windows just to use this 1 program, which can be annoying. That is where Virtualbox comes into play/

   One installs this program on your main O/S in order to run a different O/S without leaving your “ host “ system. In other words, I can run Windows pretty much inside my Ubuntu, thus saving a little bit of time.

   Anyway, I up-graded Ubuntu to the latest, and as luck would have it, Virtualbox also had an upgrade. Normally that would be a good thing, but not this time around. Virtualbox will not load for whatever reason. Was working just fine until I upgraded both toys.

   Until I correct this crap, there will not be to much added to this site today as I am not going to bounce back and forth between the operating systems.

   Have a great day!

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder’s Recall Petition Approved…

   ….so as of May 8, Michiganders have 90 days to gather the 800,000 signatures needed to force a recall of the very unpopular Taliban governor.

    Judges in Washrenaw County voted to approve the recall petition by 2-1.    Source

   Snyder’s days as the Governor of Michigan are numbered, I hope.

   See there people? The Royal wedding wasn’t the only news on Friday.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Friday Funnies: “ Group Of Stupid “ Edition

  As a side note. Happy Birthday to Jay Leno.  61

Jay Leno:

"The good news is, President Obama was born in America. The bad news is, so was Donald Trump."

"Did you see Donald Trump today? He said, 'I'm very proud of myself because I accomplished something no one else was able to accomplish.' So basically Trump is taking credit for President Obama proving that everything Trump has been saying for the last year is a bunch of crap."

"It’s the 75th anniversary of the introduction of Social Security checks. For the younger viewers who don’t know what a Social Security check is, you’ll never see one in your lifetime, so don’t worry about it."

"A new poll shows that President Obama's approval rating is down to 41 percent. A lot of people that voted for him now say they liked him a lot better when he was a Democrat."

"Every time a kid found an egg, Michelle Obama would make them trade it in for a low cholesterol Egg Beater. They had about 6,000 eggs, and you know who decorated them? Ex-cons. It’s nice to see the White House reaching out to former members of Congress."

Jimmy Kimmel:

These people could have personally witnessed him being born out of an apple pie, in the middle of a Kansas wheat field, while Toby Keith sang the National Anthem – and they’d still think he was a Kenyan Muslim."
"Next up, we ought to say we don’t believe he’s a man and refuse to let it go until he releases his penis.”
"I’m surprised Donald Trump isn’t investigating whether Hawaii is an official state. A lot of vowels over there and not enough consonants."
Sarah Palin has written two books, her daughter Bristol has a book coming out – and now Levi Johnston is writing one too. Who would’ve ever guessed that America’s greatest literary dynasty would come out of an igloo?"


My Warm-Up To The Friday Funnies…

   …and his has a video of Donald Trump out in Las Vegas bitching about President Obama, as usual, with Mr. Trump cussing like a sailor. Anything to stir up the ignorant racists I guess.


  What a moron!

Jerry Brown Is Making California Republicans Cry…

   …and he is beating them down with their own bull.

      by   Leftwing Noise Machine     Thu Apr 28, 2011

Here in California elected Republican officials are as rare as the desert tortoises they are always trying to delist.  Still, the conservative anti-tax meme has dominated the state ever since boozy, stogie-wielding Howard Jarvis bamboozled the population into enacting Proposition 13, a Trojan horse that let the largest corporations in the world pay almost no property taxes on some of the most expensive real estate in the world.   Have another Vodka twist, Howard.

This (and some other disingenuous rightwing posturing, like Schwarzenegger’s demagoguery about car registration fees) led to the biggest fiscal crisis in California’s history, mirroring what is happening at the federal level.

But there’s a difference: Jerry Brown.  Governor Moonbeam, the Zenmeister, Linda Ronstadt’s arm candy, yes, yes, we know.   But in fact Brown may be the most astute Democratic politician currently holding office.  Not only did he handily defeat the smarmy billionairess and maid-abuser Meg Whitman with a low-budget low-tech campaign, he has completely turned public opinion against the core conservative memes.  Over the past couple years, Californians had happy feet for the Tea Party babalu of slashing budgets and not raising taxes on the rich.  But four months into his governorship, and Brown has turned that completely around.

Recent polls show that by a huge majority, Californians now support raising taxes on the rich (and even themselves) rather than further Tea Party slash and burn budget cutting.   Here’s Brown’s mojo.

First, he didn’t come out of the starting block with a compromise pleasing to the entrenched extremist Republican minority obstructing a tax increase (unlike a certain President we know).  He made a definite proposal and he stuck to it.  When the Tea Party gurus tried to change the subject and make unions the issue, not taxes, Brown refused to fall for the Shock Capitalist feign and stuck by the unions.  He didn’t flinch or apologize for his support of higher taxes, even suggesting – mirabile dictu – that the GOP’s zombielike anti-tax dogma showed their bad faith and lack of concern for Californians.  They squealed like stuck pigs with lipstick on (don’t apologize Obama) and looked foolish. 

Second, Brown talked directly to the people of California, not just the obstreperous and incoherent Republican commandants.   Again, unlike a certain President.  Over and over again, he took his message to YouTube (you got to love that), as well as highschool gyms and union halls.  For a septuagenarian he made a certain young president look like a geezer.  Again the GOP squealed, and most people here saw the Republicans for what they are: ideological bullies who act like South Park’s Cartman when somebody stands up to them.

Finally, he created a narrative.  He didn’t bother, Vulcan-like, to rebut the noisy Tea Party’s deceptive graphs and slogans.  He just called them deceptive.  He didn’t hold a seminar on interest rate fluctuations.   Rather he painted a picture of what a dystopian California will look like if conservatives have their way and perform further budget amputations without anesthesia. 

It worked.  The vast majority of Californians now side with Brown on raising taxes.  And in particular raising taxes on the rich is now favored. Democrats are emboldened (just today State Treasurer Bill Lockyer twisted a dagger in the GOP by saying conservative lawmakers who want an all-cuts budget because less government is better should get their wish with the cuts starting in Republican districts– resulting in further squealing).  A vanishing minority of Republicans is still blocking a tax increase on the rich, but they are the besieged Mubaraks of the election cycle, making irrelevant delusional proposals nobody but a few Tea Partiers in trailer parks even bother to listen to.

That’s how it’s done.  Obama, are you listening?


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Just So You Don’t Forget…

    ….it is rumored that there is a Royal wedding today, Friday, April 29. I post this friendly reminder just in case you missed it on ALL of the morning news shows over the past few weeks. Just in case you missed it on ALL of the afternoon news/talk shows over the past few weeks. Just in case you missed it on ALL of the nightly news shows over the past few weeks.

   Oh yes, let us not forget the other shows such as Access Hollywood, Regis and Kelli,TMZ, and every other damned show on cable TV.

   So remember folks.

   Today, THERE IS A ROYAL WEDDING, which will be carried live on almost every channel on the damned planet. Do not forget it. There will be a test!

   If you miss it, then good for you. You deserve a prize because you have a life.

Donald Trump And Those Other " Birther " Idiots...

....have been slapped up the side of their heads with the release of President Barack Obama's lonf-form birth certificate from the state of Hawaii, so now the morons want the President to release his college records because Trump and the " group of stupid " need something else to keep the ignorant sector of the population from deciding to maybe believe that Obama is a legitimate President of the United States. This is nothing but many of the Republican Party, along with other " group of stupid " attempting to distract Americans from the real issues at hand. It is a sad day in America when the sitting president has to defend his birth-rite and his education record to a rolling train of idiots, which does no good in the first place. Trump should be thrown off of NBC and his fake reality show cancelled. He should be also labeled as a terrorist. I would hope that President Obama would not stoop down to their lower level again by submitting to their demands of his school records. There is no point in giving in to the racist once again as it will not help matters anyway.

The Birthers Continue To Be Stuck On Stupid/Ignorant? And Dumb

   So the White House released Barack Obama’s long-form birth certificate for all to see and to shut up at least a few of the assholes and idiots roaming the political corridors and the more racist parts of America. Did anyone in the reality-based part of sanity think that those ass-wipes in the GOP, The Tea Party, or FoxNews would actually admit to being wrong? Why, of course not. The President himself said that not everyone would be happy with the copy. He was right. Even the lead racist at the current time, Donald Trump, wasn’t happy to see the copy. Shit, this piece of shit looks pretty damned stupid today so I guess that he had to create another bullshit story to run with. So now he wants to question Obama’s educational records.  Let’s go see and hear the bat-shits run on todays happenings.

First up, the original birther Orly Tiatz:

  Then is Ann Coulter on Foxnews. What a fruitcake this bitch is. the video will not embed for whatever reasons, so if you wanna hear a total load of crap: View it here

Shep Smith was the only sane member at Fox to speak coherently about the birther batshit.

Video  LINK

  Partial Transcript

Shepard Smith :

“They were just rumors, they were never anything else. Yet the media let it continue. And it all began with President Obama’s citizenship status which was never for a millisecond in question. . . . [And yet there was] a lot more evidence that the President was a citizen than there was that Trump’s ever going to run for anything”

“You think this is over? This is not over. Because it’s working. It’s allowing people who are looking for a reason . . . to dislike and distrust the President to have something that’s crazy and conspiratorial. Next it’s going to be [Obama's] college stuff . . . it’s from crazyland, and we’re going to leave it there.”

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Supreme Court Screws U.S. Consumers

Oh yes! The Supreme American Taliban Court voted in favor of fucking the American consumer/worker.

by mrbeen38 Wed Apr 27, 2011 ( Link at bottom of story ) Today the United States Supreme Court, in a 5-4 ruling, issued an incredibly disturbing opinion for United States consumers (i.e. all of us). In AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion the Court held that corporations can ban consumers' rights to take corporations to court, individually or in class actions, through arbitration clauses in consumer contracts. Virtually every consumer contract we enter into contains buried within it a term saying that by signing the contract we agree to settle all disputes in arbitration and do not have a right to band our claims together in court in a class action. In the case of Discover Bank v. Superior Court, 36 Cal. 4th 148 (2005) the California Supreme Court held that the inclusion of such clauses in consumer contracts was unconscionable in light of the fact that consumers have absolutely no say as to the terms of the agreements they enter into with corporations. Thus those clauses are unenforceable and consumers are allowed to file class action claims in state courts. Today, the United States Supreme Court overturned that opinion holding that states do not have the right to find a contract's arbitration clause unenforceable because their ability to do so is preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act. What does this mean for you and I? Well, in short, without access to courts and without the right to band together in class actions, consumers will have virtually no ability to put an end to bad and illegal corporate practices and will have virtually no ability to recover any damages they suffer resulting from bad corporate practices. Most individuals, for example, are not going to take a corporation to arbitration for a small claim of say $50. If they did so, the cost of arbitration to them would likely exceed the amount of their claim. Likewise, in arbitration, consumers would have no right or ability to obtain an injunction stopping a corporation from further engaging in an illegal practice. In short then it means that any time you have to sign a contract for a product or service, corporations have been given free reign to falsely advertise their products, breach the terms of the contract, and outright steal money from you and there is little or nothing you can do about it. The threat of class action litigation has often served as a deterrent on corporations from engaging in illegal and un-consumer friendly practices. Through their decision, the Supreme Court has removed this deterrence and corporations are free to rip consumers off with virtual impunity and without fear of legal action that would otherwise vindicate the rights of consumers. Unsurprisingly, this story appears to have received very little media coverage despite its far reaching implications for virtually every person in the United States. The Supreme Court has given corporations yet another victory in their quest to utterly dominate the people of the United States. Today is a truly sad day for consumers - all of us - the People of the United States of America.Updated by mrbeen38 at Wed Apr 27, 2011 at 03:51 PM PDT Wow! The rec list! This is my first attempt at a diary so thank you very much to all who recommended it. I tried to include a link to the opinion when I initially wrote this diary but for some reason it didn't work, so here is the link:

Better Be White And Out Of College To Vote In Florida

    We all know that the Republican Party can not win an election if played by the rules, so what do they do? Attempt to make sure that most groups of people can’t  register to vote, or have a harder time doing so.

  The Florida Taliban is hard at work doing just that.

Florida GOP Legalizes Voter Suppression, Including a Return to Jim Crow  SemDem at DailyKos       Wed Apr 27, 2011

The GOP completely dominates Florida government.  Through a sick combination of financial corruption, massive gerrymandering, a very lame state Dem party, and (until very recently) a low information voter epidemic.

They not only have a right-wing felon in the governor's mansion, but hold every statewide office sans one Senate seat.

They completely dominate the state legislature: an 80-39 seat advantage in the House and 28-12 advantage in the Senate.  (Gerrymandering is so bad that NO ONE lost their seat in the 2006/2008 blue waves.)

The teabag legislation this session has ranged from funny to frightening.  And they don't want anyone to stop their good times.

The ONLY thing that can stand in their way are two factors: 

1.  The independent court system
2.  A very angry, recently awakened electorate.

This week, the GOP teabag lawmakers went after BOTH of them with guns blazing.  Priority one is jobs holding on to power.

This was originally going to be a diary on both of those efforts, but I had to split them up or this would be one big hairy diary. Today you will see the Voter Suppression bill, which is poised to pass.  Next I will look at their strategy for dismantling the courts.


I have been a poll watcher ever since the 2000 election.  One thing I fought hard against were republican poll workers who tried to always give provisional ballots out when they weren't warranted.  Why? 


According to the Advancement Project, in 2008, 51% of provisional ballots in Florida were not counted.

Naturally, the GOP is determined to give likely Dem voters provisional ballots.  Lessee.. women, minorities, and college students. 

Here is what the 100+ page Voter Suppression bill does to you:

Women. Name change?  No vote for you!  Since the civil rights era, if you changed your marital status you could update your information at the polls and vote a regular ballot that is guaranteed to be counted.  No more.  Tens of thousands of newly married women voters in 2012 will be forced to use the shifty provisional ballots.

College students. The largest population that requires address changes are college students.  If they failed to notify the elections supervisor of their new address long before the election, they too will no longer get a regular ballot.  Again, for 40 years you could update your address at the polls.  For 40 years there has never been a problem with this.. .until now.  

Dark skin? Democrat?  Gotta love this one:

There are many other new regulations, several depriving voters of their chance to work out problems at the polls. For instance, if voters are challenged for any reason, they would be required to cast a provisional ballot. And they could not receive legal help while in line, as before.

The Florida GOP is wasting no time with this one.  They are already staging vote caging operations for 2012.  Thanks!

Horrified?  Thought you would be.  But it gets even better:

Voter-registration groups would have to register all their volunteers and paid staff with the state’s Division of Supervisors of Elections, which would then create a database.  What's the purpose of the database?  NO ONE KNOWS.  But in a state where they don't want to make a pill-mill database because it violates the privacy of drug dealers have no trouble with a database that records information of people who just want to help others vote.

Restrict the ability of news media and bloggers to take video or audio of voters at polling places.  Nice.  This is a little gift to those vote-cagers we talked about.

Volunteers have to turn in registration forms within 48 hours, are face fines and possible criminal penalties.

Why this?  The legislature has tried unsuccessfully in the past to outlaw 3rd party registration groups... so they are trying to eliminate them indirectly.  Case in point, the League of Women Voters in Florida said they may have to cease voter registration if this passes.

Now non-partisan, elected, county supervisors of elections willl be put under the control of the politically appointed Secretary of State. The Secretary would have the ability to issue orders to these county officials or remove those who do not comply!

Cut early voting in half (most early voting is done by Democrats)

Cut time for citizen-led initiatives to gain the required 600.000 signatures from four years to just 20 months.

As a side note, any meaningful reform has come from these citizen initiatives--like Fair Districts (which is under attack).  This is just the first step in the eventual elimination of these intiatives.

The GOP was asked by a few in the media why they are so hell-bent on disenfranching voters.  They claim it is all an effort to "stamp out fraud".

Interesting, since even our Sec of State had to admit he could find no cases of voter fraud.  The former GOP chairman told the media to talk with the election supervisors about all the fraud... except none of them, NOT EVEN THE GOP ONES, claim there has been any.

What can we do?

Contact your legislator.  Yes. If GOP it may fall on deaf ears but we've had success restoring funding to disabled kids, stopping the destruction of our parks, and halting the AZ anti-brown people law.  They sense the backlash and some may want to pick their battles.  If Dem, tell them to fight this in court after they vote against it or contact the DOJ.

In fact, you contact the DOJ.  Poll taxes, literacy tests, and other forms of suppression are why the federal govenrnment got involved and review changes in our voting laws under the Voting Rights Act.  I strongly feel these attacks warrant intervention.

The governor has already made it so people who have paid their debt to society cannot vote for 5-7 years after release, with the sole intention of taking 1 million minorities out of the equation for upcoming elections.   The ACLU, noting that this was the original law put in place for retaliaion of the 15th amendment, is taking up that cause after our attorney general said that this somehow didn't apply to the Voting Rights Act.

I can't stop the Voter Suppression bill from becoming law, but I'll be damned if I let this go quietly.

Originally posted to SemDem on Wed Apr 27


Okay, You Racist “ Birthers “…

   …the issue over President Obama’s  birth certificate is now officially dead. At least until the ignorant fools over at the Redstate site and their Tea Party friends invent a different conspiracy .

The White House on Wednesday morning released the president's long form birth certificate (pdf) in an attempt to put "birther" questions to rest.

"The President believed the distraction over his birth certificate wasn't good for the country. It may have been good politics and good T.V., but it was bad for the American people and distracting from the many challenges we face as a country," White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said in a statement.

  For those of you who will now be joining the reality-based world, though only briefly, go look in your mirror and see just how uneducated, dumb, and ignorant you have made yourself look just for pushing this non-issues for over two years.

  That idiot  Donald Trump is taking credit for the release having said at one point that many have tried to get the birth certificate made available, but only he was able to finally get it done. What a load of shit.

  Of course, the Donald says that the long-form certificate has to now be inspected for its authenticity and such other bullshit.

Trump said he and others are still going to have to assess the document's authenticity. We're "going to look at it. We have to see if it's real, if it's proper," Trump said. But he added that he's "sure it's the right deal" and is looking forward to moving on to more important issues such as OPEC and China.

  Perhaps Trump will visit China and impart unto them some of his massive business acumen.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

If you are a “birther” then this is what you have to believe.

  By  updoc101  Tue Apr 26, 2011    Original Article

Barack Obama's mother was Stanley Ann Dunham (November 29, 1942 – November 7, 1995), a teen mother who later got a Ph.D. in anthropology, and a woman so brilliant, so devious, so wealthy, that she was able to pull off the greatest conspiracy since the murder of Gaius Julius Caesar. Some suspect that she may have played a role in that as well. By distracting the worlds entire military-industrial complex, multiple world leaders, the Republican Party, the Koch brothers, and the United States Supreme Court she managed to insert her Muslim, foreign born, black son into the most powerful position in the world and take command of the world’s largest military. A stunningly beautiful piece of subversion, performed largely from beyond the grave, and one that exposes not only the high level of Muslim contamination in our intelligence networks but the very lack of American, British, German, and Interpol’s ability to perform even their most basic duties. Incredible.

All of this, mind you, without detection by the United States Intelligence Community, Director of National Intelligence, National Intelligence Council, National Counterterrorism Center, National Counterintelligence Executive, Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, National Reconnaissance Office, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Homeland Security Office of Intelligence and Analysis , United States Intelligence Community, The Joints Chiefs of Staff, Presidents Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Carter, Clinton, and both Bush’s, Rupert Murdoch, The Director of National Intelligence, National Intelligence Council, National Counterterrorism Center, National Counterintelligence Executive, Assistant to the Secretary for Intelligence Oversight, Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Networks and Information Integration, Defense Information Systems Agency, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Defense Protective Service, Defense Security Service, US Special Operations Command, Army Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Intelligence and Security Command, The Army, The Navy, The Marines, The Coast Guard, The United States Air Force, Dick Cheney, the Office of Naval Intelligence, Naval Security Group Command, Naval Criminal Investigative Service Official, the Republican National convention, The entire governments of Hawaii, Kenya, Southeast Asia, Canada, Europe, and Africa, as well as the Boy Scouts of America. If you are a “birther” then that is what you believe.
That is one hell of a conspiracy to be launched by an 18 year old girl pal.

VIDEO: Obama Pronounces Bradley Manning Guilty Before Trial, Affirms "Nation of Laws" as Bush Walks

    Interesting comments made by President Obama.

by Ralph Lopez  Mon Apr 25, 2011    At DailyKos

Now watch this drive.

Caught on video, after the fundraiser in San Francisco last week when Bradley Manning supporters at a $5,000-a-plate dinner broke out in a song in support of Bradley, then were duly escorted out before dessert.  Overlooking entirely the kind of prosecutorial misconduct known as "prejudicial statements," which includes public statements assuming the guilt of an accused which makes it impossible for him to get a fair trial, President Obama makes the interesting claim that we are "a nation of laws."  But I don't see Dick Cheney doing time after his office's leak of the identity of a covert agent, Valerie Plame, which really was a crime specifically prohibited by the Covert Agents Identity Act which did real national security damage.

Special Forces Colonel Pat Lang testified before Congress that as a result of leaks like Plame, the "possibility of penetrating these [Jihadi] groups, the possibility of knowing that they're going to carry 10-pound bags of explosive in the subway stations, will go right down the drain."  Walter Pincus reported a former diplomat saying that:

   "every foreign intelligence service would run Plame's name through its databases within hours of its publication to determine if she had visited their country and to reconstruct her activities."

"Every foreign intelligence service" would include the Pakistani ISI, which leaks like a sieve to Al Qaeda.

In this "nation of laws" I also don't see the Apache gunner being prosecuted who fired upon wounded, and those attempting to evacuate them, in Baghdad in 2007.  It was on videotape that any prosecutor would dream of for an open and shut case, an action contrary to one of the oldest laws of war:

Article 12 of the Geneva Conventions: "...wounded or sick, shall be respected and protected in all circumstances. They shall be treated humanely and cared for by the Party to the conflict ... Any attempts upon their lives, or violence to their persons, shall be strictly prohibited; in particular, they shall not be murdered or exterminated ..."

The prohibition against killing wounded goes back to the Napoleonic Wars.  Once the battle was over, soldiers often felt pity, even for the other side.  The prohibition was a first step in the struggle back to humanity amidst the barbarism of war, which many hoped would someday itself become part of the past.

I also don't see any generals in isolation at Quantico for telling the very serious lie to their chain of command, revealed by Wikileaks, that the Taliban does not have SAMs (surface to air missiles) or that they had already shot down helicopters and killed many soldiers with them.  The families of the fallen were told that their loved ones' deaths were due to "mechanical failure," thus robbing them of the honor of falling in action.

If we are a nation of laws then why does Obama persist in pressuring Spain to not prosecute Bush, Rumsfeld, and Alberto Gonzalez for torture of its nationals?  Oh yes, they are rich and powerful and one used to be president.  But you bet if Cynthia McKinney were president, she wouldn't be standing in the way.  And  let's get it out of our heads that this is just about waterboarding, which Hannity/Limbaugh quickly jump to, on script, whenever torture is mentioned.  If waterboarding were the worst of it, this would have died by now.  The Justice Jackson Center is preparing a criminal complaint against Bush officials which alleges:

    - Savage Beatings. Prisoners were severely and regularly beaten with clubs, rifles and fists. They were beaten to the point that bones were broken, ribs were fractured, and prisoners sometimes were killed.

    - Peroneal Strikes. Peroneal strikes are a specific form of savage beating, consisting of blows to the soft tissue and nerves just above the knee. The falsely accused prisoner beaten to death at Bagram had been given so many peroneal strikes that a coroner testified that his leg tissue had '"basically been pulpified.'"

    - Hanging By The Arms. A highly excruciating "stress position" torture used on many prisoners, sometimes every day for two to three months, is hanging them by their arms, often or usually on tiptoe.

    - Slamming A Prisoner's Head Into Concrete Walls. In this torture a towel is wrapped around a prisoner's neck and is then used to propel the prisoner head first into a concrete wall. This torture was so fraught with risk of serious injury to or death of a prisoner that the CIA kept a doctor on hand at all times to guard against death or crippling injury.

    - Additional "Stress Positions" And Electric Shocks. "Palestinian hangings," they were hung by the arms with their feet on a drum through which electric shocks were applied to their feet; the shocks would cause the feet to "dance."

And remember Dilawar, innocent, died at Bagram.  Wiki:

Dilawar was a 22-year-old taxi driver and farmer from the small village of Yakubi, who was 5 ft 9 in. tall, and weighed only 122 pounds. Dilawar was transporting 3 passengers in his taxi, when he and his passengers were arrested at a checkpoint on a US base. The four men were detained and turned over to American soldiers...At Bagram, Dilawar was chained to the ceiling of his cell, suspended by his wrists for four days. His arms were dislocated from their sockets, and flapped around limply, whenever guards collected him for interrogation. During his detention, Dilawar's legs were beaten to a pulp and an amputation would have been necessary.

A nation of laws, Mr. Obama?

Finally, I don't see laws being applied to commanders in Iraq for allowing, and even helping, the Maliki government to round up, torture, and kill Iraqi dissidents who were passing out "anti-Iraqi literature," which in essence asked "where did the money go?" for things like clean water, trash pick-up, and working sewers.  This was Bradley's first assignment when he arrived in Iraq in 2009, to get to the bottom of what was going on.  He found out that dissidents and journalists who were pointing out corruption in the Maliki government were being arrested, detained, tortured, and sometimes killed.  In the words of writer Chase Madar, the US military had "a multitude of credible accounts of Iraqi police and soldiers shooting prisoners, beating them to death, pulling out fingernails or teeth, cutting off fingers, burning with acid, torturing with electric shocks or the use of suffocation, and various kinds of sexual abuse including sodomization with gun barrels and forcing prisoners to perform sexual acts on guards and each other."

What did Bradley do?  He ran to his superiors to report these crimes.  He was told to "shut up" and go out and help find more dissidents.

These crimes are not abstractions in war zones.  The U.S. Army Field Manual 27-10, Chapter 5 Article 338 states on the subject of "internees," meaning prisoners, during an occupation:

"Every death or serious injury of an internee, caused or suspected to have been caused by a sentry, another internee or any other person...shall be immediately followed by an official inquiry by the Detaining Power.  A communication on this subject shall be sent immediately to the Protecting Power...the Detaining Power shall take all necessary steps to ensure the prosecution of the person or persons responsible."

The "Detaining Power" would be the Iraqi government.  The "Protecting Power" is the United States.  Bradley was obeying the law.

Mr. Obama is in a ticklish position because the problem is, Bradley broke no laws.  In America , whistleblowing is still not a crime, and causing political embarrassment is still not tantamount to treason.  The US government presently classifies around 6 million documents, and the Pentagon has affirmed that no "informants" have been killed that it knows of as a result of the Wikileaks disclosures attributed to Bradley.  Defense Secretary Bob-Predator-Drone Gates saying Wikileaks has "blood on its hands" is worse than a bad joke.  It's sick. 

Daniel Ellsberg says:

   "We have some very narrowly defined official secrets act that proscribe giving out, for example, nuclear weapons data or communications intelligence or the identities of intelligence agents, covert agents, like Valerie Plame--that was wrongly and unlawfully leaked..."

Do what you're going to do, Mr. President.  You know you have enough Wall Street money, defense contractor money, trial lawyer money etc. to put you over the top in almost any Democratic primary challenge.  You're a smart dude, smart enough to know that these prejudicial statements are contrary to prosecutorial ethics (and as Commander-in-Chief, you are the prosecutor here) and make it nearly impossible for Bradley to get a fair trial. 

But whatever you do, please, please, don't be telling me this is a "nation of laws."


Monday, April 25, 2011

America Makes Worst Cars…

    …on the road, even though the Big Three automakers in Detroit have been making steady progress towards more safer, better quality cars in the past few years.

   However, American cars are the worst on the list with the exception of three makes ( Mercedes-Benz S550, Smart Fortwo and Nissan Titan .)  It should be noted that only 1 American car manufacturer ( Ford ) had no vehicles on the list.     Forbes

   I was hoping to find the actual list in order to put a link  up on this site, but that is not going to happen. However, if you have the time you can go to this Forbes link and see the vehicles by picture. One at a time as they are presented in a slide-show.

But America Has Only Two A’s …

       From  Watching America

Capital, Bulgaria      Translated By Mila Alexandrova
21 April 2011       Edited by Heidi Kaufmann

Bulgaria - Capital - Original Article (Bulgarian)

The AAA evaluation that credit rating agencies have given the U.S. for decades is the biggest optical illusion that has been fooling the eyes of financial markets. Investors know that there is no such thing as a risk-free investment, but they prefer to believe that American Treasuries are an exception to the rule. They compare everything to the U.S. Treasuries. The misleading feeling that just putting an AAA sign on something will make it risk-free had dominated the markets and had pumped air into the big balloon that eventually popped in a spectacular manner.
For the last couple of years the AAA illusion has been withering away in a slow and painful manner. Still, the myth that American debt — which is approaching $15 trillion in a sinister way — is risk-free remained intact. The first crack on the surface broke last week when one of the largest credit rating agencies, Standard & Poor’s, downgraded American credit from “stable” to “negative,” which means that one of the cherished A’s of the U.S. may be removed in the future.
Now the big question is whether investors are ready to give up on the idea that a risk-free investment standard is possible. They may need to learn to sail in much stormier water, where risk could be shared out but not eliminated. If S&P does fulfill its threat to remove one of the A’s from the U.S. in the future (which is not very likely to happen), the American economy will have to swallow tons of water. The problem is that this is going to set the pattern for everybody on deck, especially China and Japan. Even if both S&P and investors decide to continue sustaining the optical illusion, it does not mean that the U.S. is forever capable of paying with pieces of paper with no backing value. There is one more option here: The U.S. could just let inflation depreciate the dollar, which will depreciate its debt too. Then the United State will have just two A’s on its title, and the world’s wealth will shrink by a couple of trillions.

© 2010 Watching America and All Rights Reserved

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Tea Party: From Bloom To Doom ?

   When the Tea Party began a few years back, the group was the hottest thing going in the political world of America. Now, in 2011? Not so much if you look at rally attendance figures.


   It does not help that the party claimed to be for the  “ average Joe “ and then turns out to be the group that wants to change Medicare, Social Security, and then still give  even more tax breaks to the wealthy.


  To make matters worse  for the Tea Party, they insist on using an idiot to draw crowds to the rally's. I am speaking of Sarah Palin, of course. How did she do in Wisconsin? Not so bad for a Palin moments, but the teabaggers still could not compete with the “ real “ Americans who out numbered them  both in presence and vocal ability.


   Let the shout-downs continue and let the questions fly at assembly meetings across the United States. Don’t let those congressional reps. of off the hook.