"What are you lookin' at, sugartits?" - Mel Gibson to a female cop.
Note to Mel: Hey, you stupid, drunken buffoon - she has tits AND A GUN.
After confirmation, we saw an entirely different Roberts and Alito -- both partisans ready and willing to tilt the court away from the mainstream. They voted together in 91 percent of all cases and 88 percent of non-unanimous cases -- more than any other two justices.
A few examples help illustrate how the confirmation process failed the American people. During Roberts's hearing, I asked him about his statement that a key part of the Voting Rights Act constitutes one of "the most intrusive interferences imaginable by federal courts into state and local processes." In response, he suggested that his words were nothing more than an "effort to articulate the views of the administration . . . for which I worked 23 years ago."
Today -- too late -- it is clear that Roberts's personal view is the same as it was 23 years ago. In League of United Latin American Citizens v. Perry , the Supreme Court held that Texas's 2003 redistricting plan violated the Voting Rights Act by protecting a Republican legislator against a growing Latino population. Roberts reached a different view, concluding that the courts should not have been involved and that it "is a sordid business, this divvying us up by race."
Exxon Mobil makes more than $10 billion
No. 1 U.S. oil company earns $1,318 a second - topping forecasts - but comes in just shy of a record.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Profits at Exxon Mobil surged 36 percent to a near record $10.4 billion in the second quarter as surging oil prices helped the world's largest publicly traded company soundly beat Wall Street forecasts.
The company's profit - which amounts to a cool $1,318 a second - is the second biggest ever reported by a U.S. company, behind only the $10.7 billion Exxon itself earned in the fourth quarter of 2005.
Jon Stewart: But as some see mayhem and chaos in the violence, [Condoleezza] Rice sees chaos and makes mayhem-ade...Rice (video): What we're seeing here, in a sense, is the growing birth pangs of a new Middle East.
Stewart: Birth pangs? Yes, I believe today's contraction took out a city block.
KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - In keeping with her mood and to reflect the world crises she tackles daily, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice plans to play a somber piece of music to her Asian colleagues in Malaysia this week.
The Association of South East Asian Nations has a tradition of ministers performing usually silly skits at a gala dinner, but Rice, an accomplished pianist, said she was more at ease playing a serious, reflective piece, possibly by the composer Brahms.
"It is not a time that is frivolous. It is a serious time. I will play something that is in accordance with my serious mood," said Rice, who had just attended a conference in Rome aimed at helping resolve the Lebanon crisis.
Rice said she would not be comfortable singing show tunes.
Q Is the country closer to a civil war?
SEC. RUMSFELD: Oh, I don't know.
"Iraq as a political project is finished," a senior government official was quoted as saying, adding: "The parties have moved to plan B." He said that the Shia, Sunni and Kurdish parties were now looking at ways to divide Iraq between them and to decide the future of Baghdad, where there is a mixed population. "There is serious talk of Baghdad being divided into [Shia] east and [Sunni] west," he said.
Ever since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein a succession of Iraqi political leaders have been fêted in London and Washington where they claimed to have the insurgents on the run.
WASHINGTON - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice rejected the "false promise" of an immediate cease-fire in the spreading war between Israel and Hezbollah on Friday and said she would seek long-term peace during a trip to the Mideast beginning Sunday.
The top U.S. diplomat defended her decision not to meet with Hezbollah leaders or their Syrian backers during her visit.
"Syria knows what it needs to do, and Hezbollah is the source of the problem," Rice said as she previewed her trip, which begins with a stop in Israel.
Rice said the United States is committed to ending the bloodshed, but not before certain conditions are met. The Bush administration has said that Hezbollah must first turn over the two Israeli soldiers whose capture set off the 10-day-old violence, and stop firing missiles into Israel.
"We do seek an end to the current violence, we seek it urgently. We also seek to address the root causes of that violence," Rice said. "A cease-fire would be a false promise if it simply returns us to the status quo."
CREW FEC COMPLAINT AGAINST REP. DELAY PAC – ARMPAC – RESULTS IN $115,000 FINE
One of Largest Fines in FEC History
Washington, DC – Last night, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) released a conciliation agreement reached with Americans for a Republican Majority political action committee (ARMPAC) stemming from a complaint Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed against the PAC last August. As a result of CREW's FEC complaint, ARMPAC has agreed to pay a $115,000 civil penalty and go out of business. ARMPAC was created and led by former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX).
Feinstein: "About FISA, you say that the President has the authority to wiretap Americans without warrants due to his war powers under Article 2, correct?"
Feinstein: "And I got a letter from your associate saying that the President could act because Congress had not set up a statute. Well, that's not true. The FISA law clearly says that the President can eavesdrop without warrants for 15 days after a declaration of war."
Gonzales: "Yes, but we didn't have a declaration of war, only an authorization to use military force, so we couldn't work with that provision."
Feinstein: "So you're saying that the AUMF does not amount to a declaration of war?"
Gonzales: "Obviously they are different."
Feinstein: "So if the AUMF is not a declaration of war, the president shouldn't have WAR powers!"
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Since those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it — and since the cast of characters making pronouncements on the crisis in the Middle East is very much the same as it was three or four years ago — it seems like a good idea to travel down memory lane. Here’s what they said and when they said it:“The greatest thing to come out of [invading Iraq] for the world economy … would be $20 a barrel for oil.” Rupert Murdoch, chairman of News Corporation (which owns Fox News), February 2003
“Peacekeeping requirements in Iraq might be much lower than historical experience in the Balkans suggests. There’s been none of the record in Iraq of ethnic militias fighting one another that produced so much bloodshed and permanent scars in Bosnia.” Paul Wolfowitz, deputy secretary of defense and now president of the World Bank, Feb. 27, 2003
“Earlier this week, I traveled to Baghdad to visit the capital of a free and democratic Iraq.” President Bush, June 17, 2006
“People are doing the same as [in] Saddam’s time and worse. … These were the precise reasons that we fought Saddam and now we are seeing the same things.” Ayad Allawi, Mr. Bush’s choice as Iraq’s first post-Saddam prime minister, November 2005
“My fellow citizens, not only can we win the war in Iraq, we are winning the war in Iraq.” President Bush, Dec. 18, 2005
“Regime change in Iraq would bring about a number of benefits for the region. …Extremists in the region would have to rethink their strategy of jihad. Moderates throughout the region would take heart, and our ability to advance the Israeli-Palestinian peace process would be enhanced.” Vice President Dick Cheney, Aug. 26, 2002
“It’s time for Democrats who distrust President Bush to acknowledge that he will be the commander in chief for three more critical years, and that in matters of war, we undermine presidential credibility at our nation’s peril.” Senator Joseph Lieberman, Democrat of Connecticut, Dec. 6, 2005
“I cannot support a failed foreign policy. History teaches us that it is often easier to make war than peace. This administration is just learning that lesson right now.” Representative Tom DeLay, Republican of Texas, on the campaign against Slobodan Milosevic, April 28, 1999
BUSH: I talked about my desire to promote institutional change in parts of the world, like Iraq, where there’s a free press and free religion. And I told him that a lot of people in our country would hope that Russia will do the same thing. I fully understand, however, that there will be a Russian-style democracy.
PUTIN: We certainly would not want to have same kind of democracy as they have in Iraq, quite honestly.
Reporter: Does it concern you that the Beirut airport has been bombed, and do you see a risk of triggering wider war? And on Iran - they still refuse to respond. Are they past the deadline, or do they still have time to respond?.
Bush: I thought were gonna ask about the pig.
NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (AP) -- Nearly all the religious leaders serving on a committee created by the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund to disburse money to churches destroyed by Hurricane Katrina have quit their posts, claiming their advice was ignored...
"I've learned in life that if people say they want your advice and then they change it, ignore it, or undermine it, then they really don't want it," said Gray, also a former congressman...
Numerous disagreements ensued, but Jakes and Gray said the last straw was the fund's decision to cut checks to 38 houses of worship, each for $35,000, without first conducting an audit to ensure the church exists.
Imam Abdelhafiz Bensrieti, another committee member who resigned, said the Washington staff wanted the religious leaders to "rubber stamp" their decisions. "They had their agenda and that's unacceptable," he said.
Every state must have its enemies. Great powers must have especially monstrous foes. Above all, these foes must arise from within, for national pride does not admit that a great nation can be defeated by any outside force. That is why, though its origins are elsewhere, the stab in the back has become the sustaining myth of modern American nationalism. Since the end of World War II it has been the device by which the American right wing has both revitalized itself and repeatedly avoided responsibility for its own worst blunders. Indeed, the right has distilled its tale of betrayal into a formula: Advocate some momentarily popular but reckless policy. Deny culpability when that policy is exposed as disastrous. Blame the disaster on internal enemies who hate America. Repeat, always making sure to increase the number of internal enemies.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans are in jeopardy of losing their grip on Congress in November. With less than four months to the midterm elections, the latest Associated Press-Ipsos poll found that Americans by an almost 3-to-1 margin hold the GOP-controlled Congress in low regard and profess a desire to see Democrats wrest control after a dozen years of Republican rule....
Not surprisingly, 81% of self-described liberals said they would vote for the Democrat. Among moderates, though, 56% backed a Democrat in their district and almost a quarter of conservatives — 24% — said they will vote Democratic.
How a country like the US can support freedom and democracy, and what tools should be used, is a valid question. There has always been the problem of a mighty superpower seeming to throw its weight around having the effect of creating a certain human resistence to its influence. Nobody has an easy answer to that question, but most liberals believe that the best, if not perfect, hope lies in international law and institutions.
But, honestly, anybody who thought that it was a good idea to illegally (and virtually unilaterally) invade and occupy a middle eastern nation that had not attacked anyone, in the name of freedom and democracy was nuts. (To compound the error by thinking that you could use torture and humiliation in the process and still somehow be seen as a valiant liberator is simply mind-boggling.) If there is ever a case in human events in which you cannot adopt an "ends justify the means" philosophy it's in the realm of spreading liberal values. The minute you do it, you have defeated yourself.
This was not a difficult thing to understand for those who actually believe in liberal values. It seems, however, to still elude those who for the last decade, at least, have been swinging wildly from one position to the other without even pausing for breath.
WASHINGTON - The CIA officer whose identity was leaked to reporters sued Vice President Dick Cheney, his former top aide and presidential adviser Karl Rove on Thursday, accusing them and other White House officials of conspiring to destroy her career.
As General Counsel of the Department of Defense, Mr. Haynes helped to formulate policies governing detainee interrogation and detention that violated U.S. and international law. He recommended that detainees in Guantanamo could be subjected to abusive interrogation techniques, including stripping them naked, depriving them of light, forcing them into stress positions, forcibly shaving them, and using dogs to intimidate them. He also advised that using wet towels and dripping water to make the detainees believe they are suffocating (waterboarding) and threatening them and their families with death might be "legally available" options.
Minority Members (Democrats)
Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT)
Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA)
Joseph R. Biden, Jr. (D-DE)
Herb Kohl (D-WI) >br> 202-224-5653 202-224-9787
Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
Russell D. Feingold (D-WI)
Charles Schumer (D-NY)
Richard J. Durbin (D-IL)
Arlen Specter (R-PA) [Chairman]
Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT)
Charles E. Grassley (R-IA)
Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
John Cornyn (R-TX)
Sam Brownback (R-KS)
Tom Coburn (R-OK)
WASHINGTON -- Bush administration lawyers today rejected congressional suggestions to try alleged Al Qaeda and Taliban war criminals in the U.S. military justice system, saying military courts provide protections for defendants that are unwarranted in the war on terrorism.
In their most detailed description of administration policy since the Supreme Court struck down the Pentagon's special war crimes tribunals last month, the lawyers said their ability to introduce evidence gathered through coercion or through sensitive intelligence sources would be compromised if they were forced to use the Uniform Code of Military Justice to charge Al Qaeda defendants.
The insistence that Congress readopt the administration's old war crimes commissions is the latest sign that — despite the historic Supreme Court ruling and Tuesday's acknowledgment that the Geneva Conventions apply to all Pentagon detainees — the administration is likely to be just as aggressive in asserting its authority over detainee treatment as it has been in the past.
The Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday heard testimony from Steven Bradbury, head of the Justice Department’s office of legal counsel. When questioned by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) on whether the President’s interpretation of the Hamdan case was right or wrong, Bradbury replied, “The President is always right.” Watch it.
Full transcript below:
LEAHY: The president has said very specifically, and he’s said it to our European allies, he’s waiting for the Supreme Court decision to tell him whether or not he was supposed to close Guantanamo or not. After, he said it upheld his position on Guantanamo, and in fact it said neither. Where did he get that impression? The President’s not a lawyer, you are, the Justice Department advised him. Did you give him such a cockamamie idea or what?
BRADBURY: Well, I try not to give anybody cockamamie ideas.
LEAHY: Well, where’d he get the idea?
BRADBURY: The Hamdan decision, senator, does implicitly recognize we’re in a war, that the President’s war powers were triggered by the attacks on the country, and that law of war paradigm applies. That’s what the whole case —
LEAHY: I don’t think the President was talking about the nuances of the law of war paradigm, he was saying this was going to tell him that he could keep Guantanamo open or not, after it said he could.
BRADBURY: Well, it’s not —
LEAHY: Was the President right or was he wrong?
BRABURY: It’s under the law of war –
LEAHY: Was the President right or was he wrong?
BRADBURY: The President is always right.
Religion Taking A Left Turn?
Conservative Christians Watch Out: There's A Big Churchgoing Group Seeking Political Power
The liberal side of the Supreme Court to squeeze out more taxes to give it to the " needy" in other words support income redistribution.
The anti American politicians and others who are against the war in Iraq (the same people who was against the Vietnam war) like T.Kenedy, Soros, M.Moore, the New York Times Arthur Sulzberger JR, H.Clinton (who's only hope to be elected was N.Y.S. as was used by a Kennedy years back) and many others, I hope they will succeed so that the the terrorists will move to the states.
The Charles Schumer & Joseph Wilson production yesterday was pathetic. Why would Schumer show up with a looser whose wife is trying to jump-start her husband-derailed carrier by trying to get involved in Kerry's election?
Tried to help her husband to have a job in the Kerry administration by sending him to Niger than return and write a fictitious report on Sadam that he did not want to buy yellow cake to build WOM destructions. It failed. He even gave money to the Kerry campaign.
Air America in N.Y.C. they went, as far as to take over WLIB, 1190 AM the station with no listeners now. The program used to serve in the past, Caribbean listeners now is part of Air America Radio. On some of the programs in the past listeners would call in with their problems for advice. Now they have no outlets. So much of the respect for diversity.
Air Americas a T.V. program on Sundance T.V. channel with far left political content. One can hear Al Franken, Jerry Springer (we know who he is) and other far left lunatics. Soros is one of the contributors.
Jane Fonda (Hanoi Jane) is against the war again. Some people will never mature. Her ex husband is even worst. I hope Mr. Kerry will be in the background during the bus tour again.
"WAYNE, Mich., June 27 -- Gov. George W. Bush of Texas said today that if he was president, he would bring down gasoline prices through sheer force of personality, by creating enough political good will with oil-producing nations that they would increase their supply of crude.
"I would work with our friends in OPEC to convince them to open up the spigot, to increase the supply," Mr. Bush, the presumptive Republican candidate for president, told reporters here today. "Use the capital that my administration will earn, with the Kuwaitis or the Saudis, and convince them to open up the spigot."
US applies Geneva Convention to military detainees
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Pentagon acknowledged for the first time that all detainees held by the U.S. military are covered by the protections of an article of the Geneva Conventions that bars inhumane treatment, according to a memo made public on Tuesday.
The memo signed by Gordon England, the No. 2 official in the Defense department, followed a June 29 Supreme Court ruling that struck down as illegal the military tribunal system set up by the Bush administration to try foreign terrorism suspects held at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The United States previously has determined that certain prisoners taken in Washington's war on terrorism are not deserving of all of the protections of the Geneva Conventions -- international agreements governing the treatment of prisoners of war...
The memo, dated July 7, stated that detainees held in U.S. military custody worldwide are covered by Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, which ensures their humane treatment.
The article prohibits violence against detainees, including mutilation, cruel treatment and torture, and "outrages upon personal dignity" including humiliating and degrading treatment." It also ensures care for the sick and wounded.
It also bars sentencing or executing prisoners without a decision by "a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples."
137 dead, 230 wounded as series of blasts rock Mumbai trains
Mumbai, Jul 11 (PTI) At least 137 people were killed and 230 injured in a string of seven terror blasts thar tore through first class compartments of suburban trains around 6PM during the peak hour traffic here today.
As the blasts ripped apart train compartments, mangled bodies of passengers fell on the tracks and survivors, many of them bleeding profusely, jostled to come out leading to chaotic scenes.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Bush administration was running several intelligence programs, including one major activity, that it kept secret from Congress until whistle-blowers told the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee, the committee's chairman said on Sunday.
Rep. Pete Hoekstra, a Michigan Republican who chairs the House Intelligence Committee, said on Fox News Sunday he had written a four-page to President George W. Bush in May warning him that the failure to disclose the intelligence activities to Congress may be a violation of the law.
Rampages in Iraq kill at least 60
Shi'ites, Sunnis turn Baghdad to battleground
By J. Michael Kennedy and Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times | July 10, 2006
BAGHDAD -- Shi'ite militiamen and Sunni Arab insurgents went on murderous rampages yesterday, killing at least 60 people in shootings and bombings in a bloody outbreak that raised the specter of a city sinking deeper into sectarian warfare.
Local Marine To Return Service Medal To Bush In Protest
AKRON, Ohio -- A local Marine who service in Iraq earned several medals for serving his country, but he's giving back one of the medals to the White House as a form of protest.
Sgt. Matthew Bee is a decorated Akron Marine who spent seven months in Hadeetha, serving with the 3rd Battalion 25th Marines Weapons Company based in Brook Park.
Bee received six medals of commendation, but one of them he will give back to President George W. Bush, calling the medal political, NewsChannel5 reported.
The medal is the War on Terrorism service medal, and Bee calls it "eye candy" from Bush.
"So, he took something noble and honorable and made it kind of dirty. And I always thought that medal was the one he pinned on us and said, 'This is my war. This is my stamp in history,'" said Bee.
Bee said he is not anti-war, but rather pro-peace. He plans to travel to Washington, D.C., with a small group of Marines who feel the same way he does. They will all try to return their War on Terrorism medal to Bush personally or to members of Congress.
Gunmen kidnap Iraqi deputy minister, 19 bodyguards
Jul 4, 2006 — BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Gunmen abducted Iraq's deputy electricity minister and 19 bodyguards after ambushing their convoy in eastern Baghdad on Tuesday, police and Interior Ministry sources said.
WASHINGTON, July 3 — The Central Intelligence Agency has closed a unit that for a decade had the mission of hunting Osama bin Laden and his top lieutenants, intelligence officials confirmed Monday.
The unit, known as Alec Station, was disbanded late last year and its analysts reassigned within the C.I.A. Counterterrorist Center, the officials said.
BUSH: You work three jobs?
MS. MORNIN: Three jobs, yes.
BUSH: Uniquely American, isn’t it? I mean, that is fantastic that you’re doing that. (Applause.) Get any sleep? (Laughter.) (2/8/05)
In Other News
- England loses to Portugal on penalites in the quarterfinals of the FIFA World Cup, but coach Sven-Goran Eriksson pledges that his team will play France on Wednesday anyway as a "petitioning semifinalist."
- Andy Roddick loses in the third round at Wimbledon in straight sets to an upstart challenger, but reserves the right to play in the fourth round so that "all the Wimbledon fans can see him play."
- The Kansas City Royals, 28 games out of first place in the American League Central, announced today that they are "taking out an insurance policy" to ensure that they will be able to play in the World Series if they happen to miss the playoffs.
BAGHDAD, Iraq - A car bomb tore through a crowded market in a poor Shiite district of eastern Baghdad on Saturday, killing 66 people and wounding 87 in the bloodiest attack in the capital for weeks, according to hospital officials.