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» Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Solidarity or Hypocrisy ?

The United States of Hypocrisy
repug repubsHurricane Katrina has opened many a blind eye.   Indescriminate death and destruction not in Iraq but here at home.   The irreligous right terrorists here at home have already made comments to the effect that those people deserve it just as they did with the people in Iraq.   Although they argue that God has brought his wrath to bear against the gulf coast it is a demigod, George W. Bush who has brought much the same to Iraq.   What chaps me is the wingnuts who are the first to jump on the bandwagon to help people in New Orleans, etc...   Where were these people last week?   They were fighting with all their power to reduce programs that are aimed at helping many of these same people.   As a report just released tells us, the people who are living below the poverty line has increased as well as people without medical coverage.   Yet in D.C. they are fighting cheaper drugs for the needy and trying to kill social security.   They have made a travesty of enviromental initiatives and given massive breaks to the oil industry.   All of these things affect everyone in this country and especially the poor.

Bush the WarMonger wanted endless wars, well he has one to fight here at home now.   The magnitude of the destruction in New Orleans alone is overwhelming.   The entire gulf coast as a whole has been destroyed and will be years in rebuilding.   The immediate effect of the closing of the oil refineries will be felt very soon.   The release of the strategic petroleum reserve will be of little help if the refineries are not up and capable of processing it since the infrastructure in texas is already running at full capacity.   Gas is $3.10 a gallon in Ashland KY. today. What will it be when the full extent of damage to the gulf coast refineries is known? $3.50 - $4.50 - $5.00... People talk about how outdated the oil infrastructure in Iraq was.   Guess what?   It is just as bad here.   I worked in one of the only bromine plants in the U.S. in South Arkansas in the late 70s and early 80s and it was just re-built rehashed systems that were installed in the late 50s and early 60s.   The oil refineries are the same.   Old outdated and easier to keep running than to start one up.   I heard that several of them are down and flooded in Lousiana.   It will be a nightmare to get them back online.   I went through several shutdowns and startups in my day and that had nothing to do with massive flooding which kills pumps, electrical controls and refining towers.   We are in for more grief than anyone realises right now and it will get much worse before it gets better.

These republicans that want to cut programs and give breaks to the rich will find that the people of this country will not tollerate their rethoric and lies when it comes to helping these people on the gulf coast.   With luck it will translate to all people of this country getting what they deserve from our government.   Hypocrisy and corruption may be in it's last throes...

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» Saturday, August 27, 2005

Name Change

Blog has been renamed...
repug repubsI have decided to rename this blog for a couple of reasons.   "fc" has always stood for my nickname and old CB Radio handle: fatcat.   That nick has nothing to do with my financial status.   "fatcat politics" has everything to do with the current political environment we are faced with.   All politics have suffered from this frame in the modern political age.   The Republicans, under influence of the NeoCons and Geroge W. Bush have only exacerbated this condition by taking it to the neofacist level.   When first starting this blog I was suffering from the naive, thinking I would try to present all sides of the political spectrum.   That delusion has been shattered by the Bush/NeoCon nightmare that this country now faces.   Realistically I made the transition long before the elections of 2004 and by generically naming this blog in Decmeber of 2004 I did myself a disservice.   When the republicans take control of their party back from the NeoCons and the religious right terrorists (read Pat Robertson, et al...) this attitude may moderate.   I will not hold my breath or expect this to happen any time soon.   Reality dictates that the republicans must be represented in their true light.   Torture, Treason, Corruption and Lies... By their works you shall know... The Republicans 2000 - 2008.   Although not a religious person, I fell the new blog description reflects how the Bush Administration have hijacked the moral, ethics and religious tollerance that this country was founded on.   Bush has indeed made a place in history for himself.   He will however find that there will be few nice words to describe it.   As many of my friends at Poitical HardBall and Election04 are aware, I have been apolitical for most of my adult life.   There are bad apples in every barrel so I will not make excuses for the democrats that do not work for the benefit of the American People either.   Cindy Sheehan has brought back memories of my mother and father in that her quiet demeanor and plain spoken manner in presenting common sense views that a great majority of this country hold dear.   I thank her for that and I will do everything in my power to make sure that my friends, both personal and in cyberspace hear her message.   I stand committed.   "fatcat politics" will make sure of that.
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» Friday, August 26, 2005

Republicans Lost Iraq

George W. Bush Lost Iraq
Act For Change George W. Bush and the Republican Party lost the war in Iraq.   Digby has the powerful words to support this premise... - fc

Winning and losing

Ezra weighs in on the politics of withdrawal and apologizes for being craven for even discussing it. I can understand why he felt he had to say that because a lot of people object to viewing this serious issue from a political standpoint. But I feel that politics are the only issue as far as Democrats are concerned. We haven't even the smallest bit of institutional power to affect any change in the president's Iraq policy.

This confusion continues to be a central problem for Democrats. We need to accept that we are not the governing party. If we think we are going to affect policy from our position as the irrelevant "other" party, we are sorely mistaken. Our elected officials aren't even invited to routine meetings on legislative issues; we will not be consulted on Iraq. This is an internal Republican party policy debate that they would love to cast as a partisan fight. I can see no reason why we should accomodate them by assuming responsibility for something over which we have absolutely no say and no control.

It's clear that Democrats are much, much better at actual governance than Republicans who seem stymied, confused and in over their heads. Their political agenda is good for getting (barely) elected but it has proven to be completely inadequate to actually run the country. So I'm not criticising the Democratic love of wonkish planning and analysis. It's exactly what the country will need when we again become the governing party and have to clean up this gargantuan mess the Republicans have made of things. But people don't vote for plans even though they insist to pollsters and focus groups that they do. They vote for (or against) leaders and visions.

In order to change the direction of this country we have to prioritize and our first priority and only responsibility is to get more Democrats elected to office so that we can change the balance of power. That's it. Everything we do must be in service of that goal.

I do not believe there is anything the national Democrats can do to change this policy. We have to change the government. Therefore, I think it's in their best interests to begin to define what winning and losing means before the Republicans do. In an e-mail exchange on this subject, reader Charles Saeger suggested:


"We cannot win the war in Iraq and staying could rouse terrorist sentiment against us"


"The Republicans lost the war in Iraq and our continued presence is rousing terrorist sentiment against us."

I happen to think this has the benefit of being true. The Bush administration lost the war before it began because it was unwinnable as a purely American/British venture. He didn't mishandle it. He didn't misjudge. He lost it.

I know it's unpalatable to use their frame, but I think it's pretty ingrained in the American psyche. We are the ultimate "win-lose" culture. Because of that I believe it is in our political interest and the country's security interests to frame this as a Republican loss. Terrorism is still a threat. Nukes in the hands of bad actors are a very, very serious threat. We are economically and militarily weakened by Bush's response to 9/11.

The Republicans lost Iraq. Like Lincoln when he replaced McClellan, the voters of the United States need to replace the Republicans if we want to "win" the war on Islamic fundamentalist terrorism.

If we can convince the country of that then we are in a good position to get them to listen to our alternative plans for withdrawal as a tactical retreat in the bigger war on terrorism. Framing it as an American loss, ("our" loss) however, will set the stage for another 30 years of "liberals wouldn't let us win it" bullshit. It's time to put that nonsense to bed. The GOP has proven in real time, right before our eyes, that they want to start wars but they don't have a fucking clue how to win them. That needs to be reiterated over and over again to the American public. If it sinks in we might just be able to find our way out of this ridiculous national security paradigm we've been in ever since the wingnuts asked "who lost China" back in 48. It created Vietnam and it created Iraq. Enough.

Who lost Iraq? George W. Bush and the Republican party.

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Act For Change

Act For Change :: link :: George and Laura Bush -- Meet with Cindy Sheehan, Don't Arrest Her

:: link :: Tell the House - We Need an Iraq Exit Strategy

:: link :: Feingold's Call for a Timeline to End the Occupation of Iraq

:: link :: Demand a Full Investigation of the Downing Street Memos

:: link :: Fire Karl Rove

:: link :: Stop the Effort to Gut Campaign Finance Laws

:: link :: Full List of New Issues

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» Thursday, August 25, 2005

Republican joins DSM Inquiry

Jim Leach (R, Iowa) co-sponsors Resolution
Future of Ohio is BlueCongressman Jim Leach (R, Iowa) has informed Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D, California) that he will co-sponsor her Resolution of Inquiry into Bush Administration communications with the U.K. about Iraq at the time of the Downing Street Memos. Leach is the first Republican member of Congress to publicly support a demand for an inquiry into the Bush Administration's pre-war claims. The 131 congress members who have signed Congressman John Conyers' letter to the President about the Downing Street Memo are all Democrats. The 11 Senators who have asked the Senate Intelligence Committee to do the investigation it committed to in February 2004 but never did are all Democrats.

The Resolution, H. Res. 375, is a privileged resolution which must be brought to a vote in the House International Relations Committee by September 16th, or Lee is permitted to demand a vote of the full House. Fifty-two Democrats, including Lee, have co-sponsored the Resolution. Leach is the first Republican to join them, and he is a member of the International Relations Committee..

The International Relations Committee has 27 Republican members and 23 Democratic members. Thus far 10 of the Democrats have co-sponsored the Resolution. If the other 13 vote for it as well, then along with Leach, one more Republican vote will be needed for a tie, or two more for passage.

Leach has questioned Bush's war policies for years and was one of five Republicans in May to vote for Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey's amendment requiring an exit strategy. Another of those five, Congressman Ron Paul of Texas, also serves on the International Relations Committee.

Hoffmania : The Downing Street Memos: Leach Jumps Over the Fence

Political Affairs : Republican Congressman Breaks Ranks

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» Monday, August 22, 2005

America Demands Answers

John Kerry's Petition to Bush
One America :: John

:: Sign Kerry's Letter To Bush

President Bush,

It is long past time for you to speak with clarity and conviction about America's course in Iraq. The American people - and most especially the families of those serving so bravely in Iraq - deserve answers. More "stay the course" generalities aren't what we need. It's time for you to make it clear what your plan is to achieve America's mission.

It's also time for you, as President and Commander-in-Chief, to put an end to your own administration's repeated failures to deliver the health care and services that America's veterans so urgently need and so richly deserve.

As citizens deeply concerned about these issues, we urge you to stand and deliver. What's the plan, Mr. President?


Although I am not a real John Kerry fan, I signed this petition.   Anyone who can help keep the heat on bush is doing this country a favor.     »   ƒç …

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» Friday, August 19, 2005

One America

Elizabeth Edwards Supports Cindy Sheehan
One America :: Speak Out For Cindy Sheehan : One America Committee

:: Sign Elizabeth's Letter To Support Cindy

Garance Franke-Ruta at TAPPED links to Elizabeth Edwards' effort to support Cindy Sheehan.   He says it much better than I could.

ELIZABETH EDWARDS SUPPORTS CINDY SHEEHAN. During campaign 2004, John and Elizabeth Edwards were unusually discreet when it came to discussing the untimely death of their teenage son Wade. Where many politicians turn their personal tragedies into political parables, tossed out in every stump speech, the Edwardses' silence on that difficult chapter of their lives seemed an old-fashioned assertion of personal dignity and restraint in the midst of a calculatedly confessional culture. I think the press corps respected them a lot for that, and learned to tread gingerly around the topic.

So it was a surprise yesterday to find that gentle Elizabeth Edwards, now a recent breast cancer survivor, wrote supporters of the Edwardses' One America Committee a long, personal, and moving letter in support of Cindy Sheehan, in which she discussed what it's like to be a grieving mother and lose a young son. I can't find a link to the letter anywhere at One America, so here it is in full:
Casey Sheehan was born May 29, 1979, the first born child of Cindy and Pat Sheehan. It was a long labor. Fifty-one days after Casey was born, our first child, Wade was born, also after a long labor. They started school the same year, played the same games, watched the same television shows, loved the same country. On April 4, 1996, three weeks after going to Washington as a winner in a national contest about what America meant to him, Wade died in an automobile accident. On April 4, 2004, eight years later to the day, Casey, who loved his country enough to wear its uniform, died in Iraq. Cindy and Pat's hearts broke, as had ours.

We teach our children right from wrong. We teach them compassion and honor. We teach them the dignity of each life. And then, sometimes, the lessons we taught are turned on their heads. Cindy Sheehan is asking a very simple thing of her government, and she and her family, and most particularly Casey, have paid a very dear price for the right to ask this.

Cindy wants Casey's death to have meant as much as his life - lived fully - might have meant. I know this, as does every mother who has ever stood where we stand. And the President says he knows enough, doesn't need to hear from Casey's mother, doesn't need to assure her that Casey's is not one small death in a long and seemingly never-ending drip of deaths, that there is a plan here that will bring our sons and daughters home. He doesn't need to hear from her, he says. He claims he understands how some people feel about the deaths in Iraq.

The President is wrong.

Whether you agree or disagree with every part, or any part, of what Cindy wants to say, you know it is better that the President hear different opinions, particularly from those with such a deep and personal interest in the decisions of our government. Today, another voice would be helpful.

Cindy Sheehan can be that voice. She has earned the right to be that voice.

Please join me in supporting Cindy's right to be heard.

I grew up in a military family. My father and my grandfather were career Navy pilots. I saw what it meant to live a life every single day when the possibility of an honorable death is always there, at the dinner table, on the playground, at the base school. Will someone's father not come home tonight? And I didn't just feel the possibility, I saw the real thing, and, believe me, it stays with you, it changes you.

I also saw, then and more recently as I campaigned across this country and spent time with courageous military mothers and wives, how little attention is paid to the needs and the voices of military families. It has to change. The sacrifices that our military men and women make assure us that we have the strongest military in the world, but the sacrifices that their families make are too often ignored. The President's cavalier dismissal of Cindy Sheehan is emblematic of a greater problem. This is a mother who raised her son to love his country enough to serve. This is a mother who lived the impossible life of a mother of a soldier serving in Iraq, unable to sleep when he sleeps, unable to sleep when he is on duty, unable to watch the television, unable to stop watching the television.

And when the worst does happen, when the world comes crashing down and she puts the boy she bore, the boy she taught, the boy she loved in the ground, what does that government say to her? It says we'll do the talking; we don't need to hear from you. If we are decent and compassionate, if we know the lessons we taught our children, or if, selfishly, all we want is the long line of the brave to protect us in the future, we should listen to the mothers now.

Listen to Cindy.

Join me so Cindy knows we believe she has earned the right to be heard.

Elizabeth Edwards


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» Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Anti War

Let's Make Sure The SpotLight Stays On!
Update - June 15, 2006 ::   This post has been hijacked to link all the Anti-War related posts.   Yet another attempt to eliminate front page clutter and still maintain a high level of progressive, liberal activism.   This list contains some of my favorite subjects including the Kent State Massacre.   - fc

US History of War Kent State 35 yrs ago Depleted Uranium Revisited depleted uranium homeless veterans · bush speech on iraq
· gitmo docs aclu kos wiki
· general admits to secret air war
· major increase in terrorism
· why the great experiment is failing
· redefining war on terrorism
· US lied to Brits about Napalm
· Campaign for American Leadership in the Middle East
Support Cindy Sheehan and the Anti-War Movement

:: Act Now to Stop War & End Racism
:: Friends Committee on National Legislation
:: American Friends Service Committee
:: National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee
:: Znet - The Spirit Of Resistance Lives
:: Committee Opposed to Militaryism and The Draft
:: Coalition For Militarism Free Schools
:: The Project on Youth and Non-Military Opportunities
:: Central Committee for Conscientious Objection (CCCO)
:: Quaker House : Working For Peace & G.I. Rights since 1969
:: Meet With Cindy     ⇒   Sign a Note to Bush
:: Crawford Update     ⇒   News and Pics
:: :: Cindy
:: :: Cindy's Log
:: Gold Star Families for Peace
:: The Crawford Peace House
:: Code Pink :: Women For Peace
:: Military Families Speak Out
:: Military Families Against the War :: UK
:: 9-11 Families for Peaceful Tomorrows
:: United for Peace & Justice
:: :: Links *
:: International Action Center
:: U.S. Institute Of Peace
:: Middle East
:: Not In Our Name
:: Protest Net
:: Peace Magazine
:: Fellowship For Reconciliation
:: Voices For Creative Nonviolence
:: Center For Conscience & War
:: UNESCO Culture of Peace
:: Veterans for Peace
:: Vietnam Veterans Against the War
:: Vietnam Vets of America Foundation
:: Iraq Veterans Against the War
:: Expats Against Bush
:: Veterans for Common Sense
:: The Battle For America
:: Citizen Soldier
:: War Is Stupid
:: Why War
:: Win Without War
:: Refuse And Resist
:: What Really Happened
:: Cost Of The War
:: Iraq Body Count
:: Iraq Casualty List
:: Robert Fisk     :: Links
:: March For Justice
:: Iraqi Victims
:: Crisis Pictures
:: The Four Reasons
:: My
:: ZMgazine
:: Counter Terror
:: Operation Truth
:: War Resister International
:: War Resistors
:: Stop The War Coalition : UK
:: Peace Takes Courage
:: Waging Peace
:: Troops Out Now
:: Patriots for Peace
:: Soldiers For The Truth
:: Traprock Peace Center
:: Depleted Uranium Info
:: Eyes Wide Open
:: US Tour Of Duty
:: a soldiers view
:: Voices In The Wilderness
:: PeaceCandy
:: Peace-Not-War
:: NYSPC net
:: Peace Council
:: Lew Rockwell
:: Borgen Project
:: Peace Action
:: Musicians For Peace
:: Campus Greens
:: more anti-war links

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» Sunday, August 14, 2005

I share with you my pain.

History Has Come Full Circle
    I think many of us are in wonder at how we have come to find ourselves in this present situation with Americans dying for yet another unjust war.   This is how it has happened for me.

To start with, I have worked a white color job the last 17 years, but the first ten years of my working life I worked in the oil fields. Hard manual labor, working around dangerous equipment and unpleasant weather.   You trust your co-workers with your life, just as they trust theirs to you.   Many people on the internet have never been around this kind of thing.   When you live and work like that, it becomes more than just a job.   It is your life.   Some people like the danger, some like the challange, some have no choice.   I did it because of the drive to prove I could do it.   I had something to prove.   I was a big man who hid behind a twist of fate, while thousands were dying in the rice fields of VietNam.

I did get a letter in the mail that first summer and a bus ticket to Little Rock.   After trying to make them understand that I had just been in a car wreck, they still insisted I bring all my doctors reports and come anyway.   It was the rule.   I rode that bus and spent the night in a flea bag hotel waiting for them to make a decision after I had to wait all day while everyone else took their physical.   The next day they said I was still elligible and would be put back into the system.

I worked out until I was stronger than I had ever been before.   I walked, I ran, I played baskeball and football until I was as tough as I could physically be.   I would be ready when the next letter came, but it never did.   I took the first job I could find instead of honoring the full scholorship I had to the local college.   I felt guilty because there were still people dying over there just like those bus loads of young guys in Little Rock that day.   I didn't have to worry after the fall of Saigon, I had survived the madness. The killing had begun to stop but I still worried and it did bother me for a long time.

Having said that, what I went thru in those years, fighting my demons, was in reality fighting authority, what we called the establishment, in those days.   I won my battle with the physical world, realising all the goals I had set.   It took ten years.   It's called growing up.   The physical world that is involved in the kind of work I did was dangerous, yet exhilarating.   The bonds you make with the people you work with are not easily expressed in words.   I ended my work in the oilfield because of one man.   I had seen several people get hurt in my day, that just goes with the job and the reality of life.   This incident was a wake up call.

We had been working on a rig all day and were all completely worn out.   My friend reached up to grab a rail on the side of the rig to lean on and instead grabbed a two inch pull down chain that pulled his hand into a spider gear.   The driller and I both realised immediately what had happened and he reversed the pull down and his hand come back out.   It happened right before our eyes in what seemed like a spit second.   My friend took off running out thru the woods and I took off after him.   It took me about a hundred yards before I caught him.   I took him to the ground and grabbed him around his chest, hollering and screaming his name to make him calm down.   He finally calmed down but before I knew what he was doing, he pulled the work glove off his hand.   His fingers were still in the glove.   He passed out in my arms.   I laid him on the ground and ripped my t-shirt off and wrapped part of it around his hand.   I attempted to make a tourniquet with the rest, trying to slow the bleeding.   His panic had caused several minutes of his heart pounding and his hand bleeding profusly, he had lost a lot of blood.   We got him back to the rig and put him in the drillers pickup. The driller had to go because it was his responsibility while I stayed and shut down the rig, waiting for someone to help me get the pipe out of the hole so we all could go to the hospital.

I stood there in the woods, alone with my friends blood all over me, trying to convince myself that I had done everything in my power that I could do to help him.   Those were terriblly agonizing memories.   He lost all four fingers on his right hand.   He hardly ever came around after that and we eventually went our seperate ways as many did in the late seventies.

The story of Terry Rodgers, triggered all this, even tho we all have seen such things coming from Iraq over the last two years.   By the late seventies there were thousands of VietNam Vets who were in the same situation.   They had fought an ujust war and many had come home and joined the peace movement to try to end it.   They were deemed traitors then just as anyone who says anything against Bush is now.   That same attitude existed for those people like me who were opposed to that war just as there are now attacks on people who oppose the War in Iraq.   History has come full circle.

The things in my life pale compared to what these people are going thru in Iraq and what they went through in VietNam.   It can only be glimpsed long distance for those here that have never seen such violence and destruction of human bodies.   When that soldier told the doctor that he did not want to see bush, I fought back the anger and frustration, feeling the bitterness that my friend had for his situation and what the unique suffering of not just life, but of voluntary violence of war has brought to America once again.   In my friends case there was no one to blame.   In the case of this soldier and the thousands like him, there is.   The cause is the NeoCon agenda and George W. Bush.

There is no excuse for what Bush has done.   There is no explaining it away with rethoric.   He capitalized on a moment of partriotism and unity to advamce an agenda of the minority.   A minority driving the masses to support yet again an unjustified and uncalled for war.   There is no excuse for their effort at dominance by deception and lies that have driven this country again into ruin and shame in the eyes of the world.   The demons that he has created will last a lifetime for those like this soldier and the mothers like Cindy Sheehan who have nothing left but a flag and a broken heart.

You may think of me as insensitive to those who promote or enable this travesty against humanity.   I can not help that nor can I find it in my heart to forget my life experiences or those who died in my and your place in VietNam or Iraq.   I can also fight with every ounce of my being to make sure that George W. Bush does not get a pass on what he has done, just as the lies and deception that spelled the end of an age of unjust war and abusinve power for Richard Nixon.   If I live to see the 24th of September, I will pass my hand over the memorial to those who died in VietNam and I will share my anger and bitterness with those who stand with me to protest this war in Iraq.

George W. Bush, the man, the name and the underlying agenda of endless wars they represent, will live in the hearts of the people he has touched and the lives he has destroyed, forever.   There will be few kind words for him, when history has told it's story.   It is just another redundant cycle of human struggle to justify the violient domination by the few for their power hungry ambitions.   This has never changed in the war torn history of the human race.   Eventually we must take that next step.

Until then, we must each and everyone of us take the responsibility upon ourselves to make sure the turmoil that the NeoCons have made is brought under control.   Our presense in Iraq is unsustainable.   It is no top secret file hidden in a beaureaucratic war machine.   It is camped out in a ditch in Crawford Texas right now.   It is the same thing that eventually led to the end of the War in VietNam.   The peace movement.   We owe Cindy Sheehan a great deal for taking the weight of this burden on her own shoulders.   This time it is different than it was in the sixties.   She is backed up to the teeth with the most powerful tool that has ever been created in the history of civilization.    Information.    The awareness that the internet brings to bear is a tool that the NeoCons can't control.   They are there, but they cannot overpower it like they could conventional main stream media in the past.

We have seen the spin and the lies for five years.   Within the last six months we have had the DowningStreetMemo's and one scandal after another, all cascading from the top of our 21st Century Main $tream Media.   As it was in the seventies, it is the fine details of abuse of power that will bring down this present administration.   Hate for those who dare oppose them has once again created a conspiracy that rivals and surpasses the two-bit burglary that was WaterGate.   This time it is documented with intent to mislead and falsify the rational for war and will be expedited by another two-bit vendetta to silence a critic that ended up to ousting a CIA Agent.   A small detail that slipped through the cracks in the overall grand scheme of NeoCon control of the Middle East.   George Bush has lost his rabbits foot.   When a con man has lost his ability to convince his dupes that he is telling the truth, he has lost.   Just as many of us in the seventies could see the truth, America is finally awakening from the spectre that was 9-11.   We all must make sure that the truth takes top billing and change for the better will naturally follow.   We must continue the effort to make sure more eyes are opened.

Support Cindy Sheehan

- č

» Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Support Cindy Sheehan

One Woman Anti-War Movement
    This brave lady has taken on the most powerful man in the world and has him running scared.   They don't quite know how to deal with her.  
cindyCindy Sheehan and others are at Bush's Crawford, Texas, vacation location, bringing a message to Bush that it's time to bring the troops home. She is a cofounder of Gold Star Families for Peace and the mother of Army Spc. Casey Sheehan, killed in Baghdad April 4, 2004.

Intrepid, courageous, and effective. Cindy Sheehan has brought the war against war to George Bush during his frustratingly insensitive 5-week-long vacation in Crawford, Texas.

A special website has been set up to Meet With Cindy from which you can Send a Note to Bush.   Please show your support for her and her effort to bring accountability back to this country.

March for PeaceEND THE WAR ON IRAQ

Leave no military bases behind - End the looting of Iraq - Stop the torture Stop bankrupting our communities - No military recruitment in our schools

More than two years after the illegal and immoral U.S. invasion of Iraq, the nightmare continues. More than 1800 U.S. soldiers have died, at least another 15,000 have been wounded; even the most conservative estimates of Iraqi deaths number in the tens of thousands. Iraq, a once sovereign nation, now lies in ruins under the military and corporate occupation of the United States; U.S. promises to rebuild have not been kept and Iraqis still lack food, water, electricity, and other basic needs.

A majority of Americans believe that this war never should have happened, but our elected representatives in Washington continue to rubber-stamp the Bush Administration's disastrous Iraq policies. They have given military recruiters nearly unrestricted access to our schools -- and the Pentagon nearly unrestricted access to our tax dollars. At a time when our vital social programs are eroding or completely decimated, an overwhelming majority in Congress recently approved Bush's request for an additional $82 billion in war funding, and there's already talk of another $50 billion appropriation this fall.

It's time to hold all pro-war politicians accountable for the deaths, the destruction, the lies, and the toll on our communities! Join United for Peace and Justice in Washington, D.C. for three massive days of action against the war: a major march, rally, and festival on Saturday, September 24; an interfaith religious service and day of grassroots trainings on Sunday, September 25; and a large-scale grassroots lobbying day and mass nonviolent direct action and civil disobedience on Monday, September 26.

United For Peace : March On Washington :: link

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» Thursday, August 04, 2005

Ohio 02 : An Awakening

The significance...
    The quotes below reinforce my opinion that the republican crossover vote for Hackett accounted for the close call the neocons had in southern Ohio, the most republican district in the state and 57th most republican district in the country.
From a post by Steve Gilliard

Significant or tidal, I'd say this is a bad day for the Ohio GOP. Longtime Republicans are tired of both their antics and their corruption.

Understand this: yesterday, thousands of Bush-supporting, longtime Republicans went into the booth and voted for a Democrat who attacked the President. A pro-choice moderate against the head of the local pro-life outfit.

These are people who haven't voted Democratic since 1980.

Washington Post quotes Newt Gingrich :

"Who is willing to show up and vote is different than who answers a public opinion poll. Clearly, there's a pretty strong signal for Republicans thinking about 2006 that they need to do some very serious planning and not just assume that everything is going to be automatically okay."

When one of their own has such powerful words, it should be a wake up call for democrats as well. The netroots donations pioneered by Howard Dean and further enabled by the liberal blogging communities of DailyKOS, MyDD, Booman Tribune and many others are now a force to be reckoned with. The unfolding scandals of the bush administration will provide plenty of ammunition to use against the neocons for 06, 08 and beyond. The comparisons of these crooks and liars to Richard Nixon will pale in significance.   - ƒç

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» Monday, August 01, 2005

CoinGate : New Developments

Noe's wife involved...
    From a post at Raw Story, more corruption by republican officials.   This time involving Noe's wife.   Republican morals and integrety.   - fc

Ms. Noe's Own Scandal:

In yet another surreal twist in Ohio’s “coin-gate” scandal, the wife of Bush’s chief Ohio fundraiser, Tom Noe—who is currently embroiled in campaign finance and money laundering probes—surprised poll workers and observers alike by disrupting the ballot count during the 2004 general election, RAW STORY has discovered.

Bernadette Noe, who served dual roles as chairman for the Lucas County Republican Party and the Lucas County Board of Elections, sent twelve “partisans” into a warehouse on Election Day, according a memo authored by Ohio’s Director of Campaign Finance Richard Weghorst who was present at the time.

The assertion is part of a comprehensive investigation prepared for Ohio Republican Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell regarding reports of irregularities in Lucas County. The report found gross failures on the part of Ms. Noe’s board in preparation for and administration of November’s election. (Read the memo in PDF)

[... snip]

Read the reast of the article... at   Raw Story
Conyers still on the ball...
Conyers to call for special prosecutor

Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, is set to call today for a special prosecutor to investigate the scandal surrounding Bush's chief fundraiser in Ohio, Tom Noe, RAW STORY has learned. His request is cosigned by Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH).

Noe is being probed for myriad shady financial dealings, including $50 million siphoned from the state's worker's compensation fund into rare coins, and money laundering.

"The facts that have come out indicate a culture of corruption in the Ohio Republican Party," Conyers in a statement to RAW STORY. "An investigation such as this,which is rife with conflicts of interest, begs for the appointment of an independent prosecutor who would be immune from the partisan gamesmanship we have seen so far."

[... snip]

Read the rest of the Conyers Letter to Gonzales... at   Raw Story
External Links in these articles :
Special Counsel sought in Noe case : Toledo Blade
Taft stays mum : Toledo Blade
Noe Transfers $3.8 Million to his own firm : Toledo Blade
Rare Coin Fund spurs calls to revise Ohio law : Toledo Blade

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Lakoff : framing GSAVE

Global Struggle Against Violent Extremism
    From a post at The Impolitic, comes an over view of the Lakoff article at Alternet.   Lakoff puts into perspective the public relations move on the part of the bush administration to re-define the War on Terror into a more palitable sound bite, in an effort to excuse the failings of bush's warmongering.   - fc

War on Terror, Rest in Peace

By George Lakoff, AlterNet. Posted August 1, 2005.

Though politically useful for Bush and his minions, the 'war frame' never fit the reality of terrorism. It was successful at consolidating power -- but counterproductive in dealing with the real threat.

The phrase "War on Terror" was chosen with care. "War" is a crucial term. It evokes a war frame, and with it, the idea that the nation is under military attack -- an attack that can only be defended militarily, by use of armies, planes, bombs, and so on. The war frame includes special war powers for the president, who becomes commander in chief. It evokes unquestioned patriotism, and the idea that lack of support for the war effort is treasonous. It forces Congress to give unlimited powers to the President, lest detractors be called unpatriotic. And the war frame includes an end to the war -- winning the war, mission accomplished!

It is important to note the date on which the phrase "war on terror" died and was replaced by "global struggle against violent extremism." It was right after the London bombing. Using the War frame to think and talk about terrorism was becoming more difficult. The Iraq War was declared won and over, but it became clear that it was far from over and not at all won and that it created many new terrorists for every one it destroyed. The last justification - fighting the war on terror in Iraq so it wouldn't have to be fought at home -- died in the London bombing.

And so the term "War on Terror" had to go. Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the head man in waging war, said he had objected to the term, "because, if you call it a war, then you think of people in uniform as the solution" Instead, the solution is "more diplomatic, more economic, more political than it is military."

That's what was said by those in the anti-war movement.

"Struggle" does not evoke a war frame. "Struggle" is more realistic in that it does not imply an end; it may not have a victory, the "mission" is vague, it is hard to say when it is accomplished, and it is difficult. Dropping war takes the blame for failure away from the war policy, takes the focus away from $200 billion and thousands of lives spent so far, with more to come. It also justifies bringing troops home next year. If there is no war, there is no war to lose.

"Extremists" was chosen very carefully. It applies both abroad and at home. The Bush administration was using the designation "terrorist" for progressive activists and setting the FBI and the IRS on them: activists like, for instance, members of PETA who release minks raised in horrifying conditions. And the radical right has been using the word "extremist" for environmentalists. The term is set up for the suppression of opposition at home.

What is most important is what is not being said. The Bush administration is implicitly, through the use of language, admitting that war won't stop terrorism and that the war in Iraq had no justification. Important questions arise and must be asked: If this is not a "war," does the president still have the war powers given him by Congress? If there is no "war" anymore, how can there be "enemy combatants" in Guantanamo, whose imprisonment without due process is being justified by "war." If there is no "war," will we still need to call up the reserves and the National Guard? And is the new framing retroactive? Was there ever a "war" on terror? Was it just mistake to think so?

Language matters, because of the frames evoked -- and, just as importantly, the frames not evoked. "War on Terror" evoked a frame that embodied a policy claim, that war was the appropriate means to stop terrorists, and that the Iraq War was justified as a response to 9/11. "War on Terror" was a way to get the public to accept that frame and the policy it was mean to justify.

That policy is now being disowned, and so the words must be dropped. The hope is, in the absence of the old words and the presence of the new, a new frame will take hold and the old policy will be forgotten. The goal is that the public will no longer associate the Iraq War with terrorism and see the failure in Iraq as a failure to curb terrorism. That way most of the troops can be brought home before the midterm elections without the implication that the administration is giving up on stopping terrorism.

What should progressives do? Remind the public that there is still a war going on, that it was the wrong policy from the beginning, that the administration now agrees with the anti-war activists, and that you can't end a war just by stopping the use of the word. And remind the public of what Karl Rove said just weeks ago: "Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war." The conservatives were wrong; had they been right, they'd still be talking proudly about the "war."

[... snip]

Read the reast of the article... at   Alternet

Related Link :
The Impolitic : Redefining terror

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