Ask A Vet
Date: 06/03/2008 10:46:43
Today is our 1,909th day in Iraq.
We'll start this morning as we always do, with the latest casualty figures from the warron terra, courtesy of Antiwar.com:
Since war began (3/19/03): 4086
Since "Mission Accomplished" (5/1/03): 3947
Since Capture of Saddam (12/13/03): 3625
Since Handover (6/29/04): 3227
Since Election (1/31/05): 2649
Other Coalition Troops: 312
US Military Deaths - Afghanistan: 510
We find this morning's cost of war
passing through $ 525, 093, 000, 000 .00
Now we have Torture Ships.
The United States is operating "floating prisons" to house those arrested in its war on terror, according to human rights lawyers, who claim there has been an attempt to conceal the numbers and whereabouts of detainees.
Details of ships where detainees have been held and sites allegedly being used in countries across the world have been compiled as the debate over detention without trial intensifies on both sides of the Atlantic. The US government was yesterday urged to list the names and whereabouts of all those detained.
Information about the operation of prison ships has emerged through a number of sources, including statements from the US military, the Council of Europe and related parliamentary bodies, and the testimonies of prisoners.
The analysis, due to be published this year by the human rights organisation Reprieve, also claims there have been more than 200 new cases of rendition since 2006, when President George Bush declared that the practice had stopped.
According to research carried out by Reprieve, the US may have used as many as 17 ships as "floating prisons" since 2001. Detainees are interrogated aboard the vessels and then rendered to other, often undisclosed, locations, it is claimed.
Since 2001. Since the *Resident told us that we longer use rendition, it is even more troubling that 200
cases were alegedly carried out. How are these not crimes against humanity? Continue reading...
I dreamed that one day, during my lifetime, and God willing, during my Mothers lifetime, there would be a President of the United States that we would address as "Madam President". I dreamed that Madam President would change the way politics would be done in Washington; the end of dirty tricks, lying, and plotting behind closed doors - schemes that would hurt Americans.
And Hillary Clinton is killing my dream.
Hillary believed she was entitled to the Presidency. Yes, I said it. Entitled. Father Michael Pfleger, guest Pastor at "Obama's Church" as its come to be called, was right on. His sermon was on White Entitlement, which is why he brought Hillary Clinton into the mix.
And why not? From the start Clinton has assumed she will be the nominee.
She is entitled because she has the name, the money, the popularity, and she thought, the super-delegates....... not that she'd even need them.
Her assumption that she would just sweep in and be the Democratic Presidential Nominee is just plain galling to those of us that had this dream. Many of us envisioned that our first serious female candidate that would stop "playing the political game" and start talking and listening to the American people honestly. That she would be such a refreshing change Independents, Libertarians and Republicans would jump on the bandwagon. All of us, Black and White; Young and Old, Gay and Straight, holding hands and singing songs and then diving into a large bed and ripping off our .............. oops, sorry that’s a different dream.
Date: 05/31/2008 12:36:39
Well, by now you've heard that Bob Barr was won the Libertarian Nomination for President....but who might Mr. Barr be, exactly?
Of course, he's got a campaign website
, so I'll spare you the tedium of excessive cut and pastes today. However, his bio might be worth checking out, and of course we'll go back and look at his platform and positions from time to time...to compare and contrast with the 'big boys'.
Bob Barr represented the 7th District of Georgia in the U. S. House of Representatives from 1995 to 2003, serving as a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, as Vice-Chairman of the Government Reform Committee, and as a member of the Committee on Financial Services. He now runs a consulting firm, Liberty Strategies LLC, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia and with offices in the Washington, D.C. area.
Bob Barr chose to join the Libertarian Party because at this time in our nation’s history, it is essential to join and work with a party that is 100 percent committed to protecting liberty.
Bob Barr has served as Regional Representative of the Libertarian National Committee.
Bob Barr works tirelessly to help preserve our fundamental right to privacy and our other civil liberties guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. Along with this, Bob is committed to helping elect leaders who will strive for smaller government, lower taxes and abundant individual freedom.
Bob Barr also occupies the 21st Century Liberties Chair for Freedom and Privacy at the American Conservative Union, and is a Board Member of the National Rifle Association. Bob Barr is also a member of The Constitution Project’s Initiative on Liberty and Security, and he served from 2003 to 2005 as a member of a project at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University addressing matters of privacy and security. In fact, recognizing Bob Barr’s leadership in privacy matters, New York Times columnist William Safire has called him “Mr. Privacy.”
Bob Barr was appointed by President Reagan to serve as the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia (1986-90), and served as President of Southeastern Legal Foundation (1990-91). He was an official with the CIA (1971-78), and has practiced law for many years.
The biggest challenge facing any third-party candidate is not publicity, or funding, or name-recognition, but ballot access. Googling "ballot access" brings up a whole host of sites detailing the past, present, and future of access for third parties, and indeed ordinary Americans. In fact...without free ballot access, the Republican party may have never been able to exist, as free and fair access was key to their early growth in the 1850s. Beginning around 1930, the parties in control began to pass ever more restrictive laws, as detailed in a paper written by Richard Winger
back about 1994...
Date: 05/30/2008 12:07:17
It's a tough year to be a Republican. After being run out of office on a rail in 2006, they've had a of couple years to lick their wounds, regroup, and hit this year's election in full stride. However, that takes a certain amount of leadership and pride in self, and they have neither. With Bush hanging around their necks like an albatross, their Next Great White Hope for leadership and salvation would be their presidential candidate. Sorry folks - McCain't gonna happen.
First a little history. Many of you may recall back that in 2004, San Fransisco Mayor, Gavin Newsom allowed gay couples to marry. As a result, in the state of NY, New Paltlz Mayor Jason West decided to do the same. Sadly, NYS decided to uphold it's ban on same sex marriages
the following year.
Since then, Massachusetts has recognized same sex marriage, and California has overturned it's ban on Gay marriages. Many states now recognize civil unions, which is a giant leap in the right direction. The biggest problem has been that these marriages are not recognized legally once a couple leaves the state. It seems as tho one man is changing that.Continue reading...
Date: 05/28/2008 12:27:24
After hearing the story on last night's Countdown, I was planning on writing about the McK-Street of Dreams, where it's All Lobbyists - All the Time. In case you missed that one
, McCain's advisor on economic policy is Phill Gramm, who helped the mortgage companies create and then bail themselves out of the recent mortgage crisis:
Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain’s national campaign general co-chair was being paid by a Swiss bank to lobby Congress about the U.S. mortgage crisis at the same time he was advising McCain about his economic policy, federal records show.
“Countdown with Keith Olbermann” reported Tuesday night that lobbying disclosure forms, filed by the giant Swiss bank UBS, list McCain’s campaign co-chair, former Texas Sen. Phil Gramm, as a lobbyist dealing specifically with legislation regarding the mortgage crisis as recently as Dec. 31, 2007.
Gramm joined the bank in 2002 and had registered as a lobbyist by 2004. UBS filed paperwork deregistering Gramm on April 18 of this year. Gramm continues to serve as a UBS vice chairman.
News of Gramm’s involvement as a paid advocate for the banking industry, simultaneous with his unpaid work on McCain’s economic policies, comes as McCain’s campaign continues to reel from the purge of four other lobbyists. Two weeks ago, McCain banned lobbyists from advising him on the same subjects covered by their lobbying work.
When Gramm chaired the Senate Banking Committee, he wrote and passed deregulatory legislation in more than one industry, establishing himself as a pre-eminent foe of government regulation. McCain’s March 26 speech recommended further deregulation of the banking industry as his response to the mortgage crisis.
In 1999, Gramm successfully undid the Depression-era Glass-Steagall Act, removing the decades-old wall between commercial banking, which was heavily regulated, and investment banking, which was not. The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act did not extend significant new regulation to investment banking.
This is huge. McCain has said that he knows little about the economy and his taking advice from this economic Typhoid Mary is proof of it...
Ask A Vet
Date: 05/27/2008 10:31:12
Today is our 1,896th day in Iraq.
We'll start as we always do, with the latest casualty figures from the warron terra, courtesy of antiwar.com:
Since war began (3/19/03): 4083
Since "Mission Accomplished" (5/1/03): 3944
Since Capture of Saddam (12/13/03): 3622
Since Handover (6/29/04): 3224
Since Election (1/31/05): 2646
Other Coalition Troops: 312
US Military Deaths - Afghanistan: 507
I usually edit out the links to the casualty lists, but seeing that yesterday was Memorial Day,
you should go and take a look.
There have been 4,392 coalition deaths -- 4,080 Americans, two Australians, 176 Britons, 13 Bulgarians, one Czech, seven Danes, two Dutch, two Estonians, one Fijian, four Georgians, one Hungarian, 33 Italians, one Kazakh, one Korean, three Latvian, 22 Poles, three Romanians, five Salvadoran, four Slovaks, 11 Spaniards, two Thai and 18 Ukrainians -- in the war in Iraq as of May 26, 2008, according to a CNN count. (Graphical breakdown of casualties). The list below is the names of the soldiers, Marines, airmen, sailors and Coast Guardsmen whose deaths have been reported by their country's governments. The list also includes seven employees of the U.S. Defense Department. At least 30,112 U.S. troops have been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon.
We also find today's cost of war
increasing at about $10,000 every 3 seconds.
As I write this, it's passing through $ 523, 132, 950, 000.00
Cleaning House on Memorial Day Weekend.
Yesterday I was going through a box of old bills, letters, cards, solicitations from worthy organizations and wondering why in the hell I hung on to all of this crap for years and let it all sit in boxes in my "junk room" formerly known as my office, when I came across a pile of sheets from one of those daily calendars (you know the kind where each day gives you some pithy piece of information, you read it, then when the day is over, you tear it off and voila there is another page waiting for you to read and admire). Well, the calendar pages that I came across were from a George W. Bushisms calendar that one of my sisters had given me for ChrismaHannaKwansica year before last. I took a few moments to read through the pile of pages torn from the calendar, wondering why I had bothered to save them. Well, I promised Raine that I would attempt a blog post this morning (BTB, Raine, I hope that you are havng a great time with your friend, it sounds like you two are having a blast). So my point (and I do have one) is to share some of the more egregious (mis)statements made by the man who stole the white house in 2000 with the help of the Supreme Court. So without further ado - I give you some of the most ridiculous remarks to come out a president's mouth (with commentary, of course).
Looks like we missed the 8:30 hard deck...
But it's OK. You know what to do! (and anyone with the power that may be so inclined, please feel free to expand this.)
REMEMBER. 3 comments
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