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Subject: We must hold the Bush Administration accountable for
its use of torture
You want to know why, when news of prisoner torture percolated
up the channels of the government, nothing was done? The answer
is quite simple. They condoned the actions. In fact, we now
know that they were following an executive order from George
W. Bush. This isn't based on hearsay. This isn't a figment of
some Massachusetts liberal's imagination. This allegation is
based on an internal FBI document obtained by the American Civil
The document, a two-page FBI internal e-mail, references an
Executive Order that states the President directly authorized
interrogation techniques including sleep deprivation, stress
positions, the use of military dogs, and "sensory deprivation
through the use of hoods, etc." The FBI e-mail, which was
sent in May 2004 from "On Scene Commander--Baghdad"
to a handful of senior FBI officials, notes that the FBI has
prohibited its agents from employing the techniques that the
President is said to have authorized.
Now…do you think the government released this e-mail freely?
Nope. It took a federal judge in response to a freedom of information
request lawsuit brought by the ACLU to force the release of
this information. Why? Because the Bush Administration knows
it is guilty of sponsoring the use of inhumane interrogation
methods against Moslem detainees.
The Bush Administration has slipped down the slippery slope
and fallen into Satan's den. The God that George Bush claims
to speak to is not the one that Jesus speaks about. Torturing
prisoners is not an activity that Christ would approve of. Christians
around the world need to stand up and declare these actions
The people of the United States need to step up and demand an
accounting from the Bush Administration. We need the Administration
to stand up and tell the truth for a change. If they think they
were right in ordering an abandonment of the Geneva Conventions
then let them stand up and say so. The fact that they are hiding
and probably shredding information stands as proof that they
know that they have broken the law.
This isn't a case where fully releasing pertinent information
will harm the security of the United States. This isn't classified
defense stuff. This is evidence in a criminal investigation.
No wonder George Bush was against signing the European war crimes
A quick and dirty investigation by anybody with any ties with
the Bush Administration is unacceptable. An independent prosecutor
must be named with full subpoena powers. Anything less will
be a charade.
There is more at stake here than the impeachment of George W.
Bush. The very moral fiber of the United States of America is
at risk. We have always been able to hold our heads high because
we knew in our hearts and minds that we were on the moral high
ground. To find out that our leader has embraced morally reprehensible
behavior strikes at the very core of our American values.
The moment we decide that the ends justify the means is the
moment that we become no better than our enemies. Turning the
other cheek as Jesus suggests doesn't mean being a patsy for
the terrorist and bad guys of the world. But it certainly does
mean that you should not take on the tactics of your attackers.
This low point in America's integrity needs to be turned into
a high point. The only way this can become reality is for us
to demonstrate to the world that we can police ourselves.
We must demonstrate that our words and our actions match. We
must hold the Bush Administration accountable for its use of
Subject: The savings in the jar theory
Thing is...if this were just ordinary people...buzz reader...we
could produce his IOU's and take him to court and sue him and
he would have to sell his house...and his cars...and whatever
social security he was getting...and maybe get some of it back.
(OJ simpson excluded), but, with the Government, we cannot do
that...that is really what is scary about the whole thing. They
are now spending our Social Security on the war...that we did
not want...and on contracts for Halliburton...which is not right...etc...etc...etc.
Every republican I know now screamed to high heaven a few years
back...during, I think, the Reagan adm...about them even discussing
social security reform...once they started funding wars with
it. Now, all of sudden, I have no idea what it is...but, they
think it is okay if Bush lets some of these younger people invest...which
only means...that less money will be coming into social security
every month for the people who depend on it. The fact is that
many people who never had a chance to get an education back
then, had to take minimum wage jobs...support a family on that,
and paid into social security with the thought that someday...it
would at least pay a small monthly stipend. I would guess that
half the American People depend on that check each month.
I still regard AARP as traitor to the PROUD LIBERAL cause,
and continue to toss what they send; however the cover of
the current magazine caught my eye, so I scanned it before
the toss. It's a list of 5 places which still welcome Americans.
We've come a long way, baby. With Bill Clinton, we were welcome
Pamela of the Poconos
Subject: 'Tis the time for Ebenezers
The WP article you post today, hardly a Christmas cheer for
the majority of Americans, says:
Pay is rising more than twice as fast for the top fifth
of wage earners as it is for all others, and the pace of gains
at the high end is quickening, according to economists' analyses
of government income data through September.
Haul Goes to High-End Retailers (Washington Post)
So all that remains for most of us is to wait for all this
bounty to trickle down, no? Forgive me for not holding my
Subject: Mosul attack: changing story?
Some thoughts here regarding the attack in Mosul yesterday
(Tues. 21 Dec) Am I the only one who has noticed a change
in the story? Yesterday, and up til this morning, it was being
described as a rocket attack complete with descriptions such
...he heard a whoosh, he looked up and saw a fireball halfway
between the ceiling and the floor...
This is the report of Portland (Maine) Press Herald photographer
via AP, who was sleeping about a quarter mile from
the tent at the time of the attack. He rushed to the scene,
where a soldier told him the quote.
Today, however, the attack is reported like this:
"At this point, it looks like it was an improvised
explosive device worn by an attacker," said Gen. Richard
Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
I wondered why the change in story over the last 24 hours.
My take? It's easier to maintain the illusion that things
are under control if such a deadly attack came as the result
of a lone nut job slipping under the radar, rather than at
the hands of a well supplied, organized force that still has
the ability to target your "safe" installations
from the outside.
Just the musings of another one of the reality-based folk
out here in the empire...
... so where are we, & what's with the handbasket?
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Ohio Recount almost over: 86 / 88 counties reported
86 of 88 counties have reported and Kerry has picked up a
net gain of 242 votes. Given the fact that the overwhelming
majorities of the counties pre-selected the "random"
sample of 3%, I'm surprised he picked up any votes at all.
I don't know of a single county that actually went through
with the manual recount. 242 net votes for Kerry extrapolates
to a net gain of 8,486 votes statewide if all precincts were
counted by hand.
None of the 92,000 provisional ballots were examined to gauge
voter intent. Had they done so, Kerry would have picked up
15 to 25,000 additional votes.
The strategy that many counties employed was a clever one.
They picked precincts -- or pieces of precincts -- where the
Bush/Kerry vote was most evenly split. This was no accident.
Was it an order from Uncle Tom Blackwell? The precincts where
there was no great partisan divide were left largely untouched.
Why? As shown in New Mexico and countless other states, the
Bush Bulge took place in heavily Republican precincts. The
Kerry "Croak" took place in his areas of greatest
strength, particularly African-American precincts. If you
hack a 50/50 Red/Blue precinct, it raises great suspicions.
The only way for Bush to make a gain there is to jack up his
percentage to abnormal historical norm. On the other hand
if you inflate Bush's total by putting voter turnout on steroids
in deep red precincts and deflate Kerry's total in deep blue
precincts, who will know the difference? The raw percentages
between Bush and Kerry can follow historical norm and Bush
will come out on top anyway.
The Bushites covered their rears by bragging about their
"great ground game" (GOTV effort) in Ohio -- a myth
that has been widely dispelled as yet another lie. They used
a +20% formula in battleground states. In Bush precincts,
townships, wards, etc., voter turnout was +20% in excess of
Kerry areas. In Cuyahoga County, for example, the City had
a turnout of only 49% while the suburbs had a turnout of 71%.
Same formula in New Mexico. Same in Nevada.
The entire election was a formulaic contrivance in total
conflict with a raft of anecdotal data, particularly registration
data, which indicated that Kerry voters were at least as enthusiastic
to boot out Bush as his partisans were ready to continue the
Subject: Adolf Hitler was Time Magazine's Man of the Year
For anyone upset about Time Magazine's selection of George
W. Bush as its Man of the Year, it is important to recall
that Adolf Hitler also "won" that designation. It
is NOT necessarily an accolade; it simply means that the person
-- for better or for worse -- had a major impact on world
events. Well, Bush certainly had that.
At Munich, on September 29, 1938, Britain and France surrendered
the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia to Hitler. Three months
later, on January 2, 1939, Time Magazine named Hitler "Man
of the Year" for 1938. Two months later, on March 15,
1939, Hitler's troops marched into the rest of Czechoslovakia.
On September 1, 1939, just nine months after Time Magazine
named him "Man of the Year," Adolf Hitler invaded
Poland, and WWII began.
So much for the dubious "honor" of being named Time
magazine's Man of the Year.
Interestingly, in its index of past Persons of the Year, Time
Magazine writes this by Hitler's name: "1938: Adolf Hitler,
His figure strode over Europe with all the swagger of a conqueror."
Apparently Time Magazine responds favorably to swagger.
And, what did Time have to admire about Hitler?
What Adolf Hitler & Co. did to Germany in less than
six years was applauded wildly and ecstatically by most Germans.
He lifted the nation from post-War defeatism. Under the swastika
Germany was unified. His was no ordinary dictatorship, but
rather one of great energy and magnificent planning. The 'socialist'
part of National Socialism might be scoffed at by hard-&-fast
Marxists, but the Nazi movement nevertheless had a mass basis.
The 1,500 miles of magnificent highways built, schemes for
cheap cars and simple workers' benefits, grandiose plans for
rebuilding German cities made Germans burst with pride.
But, then, there is this "downer"...
What Adolf Hitler & Co. did to the German people in
that time left civilized men and women aghast. Civil rights
and liberties have disappeared. Opposition to the Nazi regime
has become tantamount to suicide or worse. Free speech and
free assembly are anachronisms. The reputations of the once-vaunted
German centres of learning have vanished. Education has been
reduced to a National Socialist catechism.
Nor were signs lacking that many Germans disliked the cruelties
of their Government, but were afraid to protest them. Having
a hard time to provide enough bread to go round, Führer
Hitler was being driven to give the German people another
diverting circus. The Nazi controlled press, jumping the
rope at the count of Propaganda Minister Paul Joseph Goebbels,
shrieked insults at real and imagined enemies.
Here is a link to the Time Magazine article from January 1939,
nominating Hitler as the 1938 Man of the Year -- just before
Hitler started World War II, in which at least 50 million people
A Loyal BuzzFlasher
Subject: Bring the troops home
After yesterday’s attack at Camp Marez where we senselessly
lost 24 more lives in an already ridiculous and unnecessary
war, I'm finally ready to say enough is enough. For those
looking for a solution -– an exit strategy, here it is: Get
the hell out of Iraq!
Already one reconstruction contractor is pulling out. Hungary,
like other countries before them, is pulling out. Iraq is
like a bad marriage or a bad financial deal. We’ve got to
swallow our pride and for the sake of the rest of our lives,
move on. How many more lives do we lose; how many more billions
of dollars do we flush down the toilet?! Why do we have to
follow in lockstep with that insane, self-appointed emperor
we just stupidly elected for another four years?
To continue with this so-called war is false pride. To begin
with, we didn’t go over there to restore democracy and freedom.
We went over there because Saddam was a threat to this country.
Remember? "Mushroom clouds"!
We’re not fighting terrorists who hate our freedom. We’re
fighting Iraqis who don’t want to be occupied and who want
their sovereignty back. How would you feel if there were tanks
rumbling through our streets? The fighting in Iraq is unwinnable.
We’re fighting a shadowy, faceless entity called the will
of a people, and there is no end.
Wake up America! And instead of continuing to stick those
magnetic ribbons on the back of your SUVs and vans that say
"Support Our Troops," stick one on that says "Bring
Our Troops Home."
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Judge Susan Owens for Supreme Court
What are the odds that Washington Supreme Court Justice Susan
Owens will be nominated for the U.S. Supreme Court? Her questioning
during the State of Washington governor's race defies the
US Supreme Court. Why wasn't this "irreparable harm"
question asked in 2000?
''A recount is limited to a retabulation of the ballots
that were already determined to be valid,'' Korrell said.
When Korrell argued that counting those votes would cause
irreparable harm, the justices questioned who would be hurt.
''You're looking at it from the point of view of the winner
or the loser -- shouldn't we be looking at it from the point
of view of the voter?'' asked Justice Susan Owens.
President in 80 Years
For God's sake, isn't it obvious that this president STOLE
THE ELECTION? Are we supposed to believe that the same president
who took the nation by storm on November 2 has now all of
a sudden become reviled by the electorate? For heaven's sake
America wake up.
Subject: It was a very good year... not!
‘Tis the day after a heavy snowstorm in Ohio and I was watching
TV for news coverage. A reporter standing in the snow had
a newspaper cartoon in her hand depicting an automobile doing
a figure 8 in the snow. The bubble sentence in the cartoon
came from the driver saying, "At least it’s not cicadas!"
True, true. It’s been a bad year for OH...a plague of summer
cicadas and yesterday’s snowstorm that has crippled much of
SW OH just two days before Christmas.
The cartoon would have been more effective if the bubble sentence
had said...first a plague of Cicadas...then the plague of
Kenneth [Harris] Blackwell...then the OH RIGGED ELECTION...and
now a crippling snowstorm!
Mr. Sinatra’s song, "It Was a Very Good Year," definitely
does not apply to Ohioans this year!
Subject: Why do the white, upper middle-class men dismiss
I have noticed that many of the liberal/left blogs and columnists
I read, most of them white, upper-middle-class men who are
in the intellectual class (not that there's usually anything
wrong with that!), have had a hard time drumming up concern
about vote tampering on a major scale. Just one example is
in Rick Perlstein's article, which describes many of us BuzzFlash
readers pretty sarcastically.
Even worse, he consigns those of us who believe there is
plenty of damning evidence of vote tampering and vote fraud
to the "loony left" and implies that WE are interfering
with REAL election reform by insisting that major forms of
systematic cheating happened in Ohio. (By the way, did you
see all those articles about election reform over the last
four years coming from this group of people? I didn't think
Did Rick Perlstein show any concern after the Florida fiasco
in 2000? I don't happen to know, but it would be interesting
to see if he did. I find it interesting that a class of people
who have never had an iota of trouble casting a vote have
a hard time imagining that voting could be interfered with
in a multiplicity of ways on a massive scale. I don't think
they are giving Karl Rove and the Republican machinery nearly
enough credit. I say Karl Rove should produce his marketing
plan and get some well-deserved praise for carrying off this
heist so well.
Case of the Ohio Recount: In the whodunit over who won it,
the true villain is slipping away (Rick Perlstein/The
Subject: They knew that the threat was there
Did we ever get a clear explanation as to why airport security
wasn’t increased before 9/11? Remember Rice said the memo
titled "BIN LADEN DETERMINED TO ATTACK WITHIN AMERICA"
wasn't specific enough. She basically said they really had
no way of knowing when or where. Yet they knew that the threat
How did they think Bin Laden's people were going to get into
our country...By spaceship? To think that there are some people
that feel safer with Bush in office, one can only wonder,
what will it take for them to feel unsafe? The Bush administration
has taken incompetence to a new level. Airport security should
have been increased and they failed to do so. Yet, in the
world of the Bush Administration, if you screw up, you're
promoted to a higher position.
Subject: A perfect song
I'm now listening to a song by a band called Live (who's singer,
Ed Kowalczyk, has one of the finest voices I've ever heard
so far) titled, "The Beauty of Gray," from their
1991 LP "Mental Jewelry."
The first line of the refrain is, "It's not a black and
I'd like to see the DNC get a hold of this song and play it
at their 2008 Convention.
Just let the Repubs sneer at our so-called "Moral Relativism"!
At least we progressives don't talk to adults as if they're
children. We *do* see and appreciate nuance.
Besides, hasn't Massachusetts (from where I proudly hail)
been rated the most intelligent state of the union?
Lisa in Boston
Subject: post-election awareness or just plain incompetence?
...rumsfeld--and all of the rest of the neocons in power
positions--have been doing 'what bush wants' them to do all
along. (Or, should we say bush has been doing what THEY want
him to do?) So, now come the critical editorials and articles.
Nothing has changed. Again, bush's promises and rosy pictures
continue to be proven to be lies. I agree with your statement,
"they own this war"--the Chronicle endorsed bush,
also. This is what they bought into and were willing to accept.
Now, who is paying the price?
is doing what Bush wants him to do (The Houston Chronicle
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Framing the Issue
This is how I believe the election issue should be framed--Voting
is a right according to every State Constitution in this country,
as is equal protection under the law. The practice of vote
suppression is well documented in Florida and Ohio. It's time
to call vote suppression what it is, a crime, a violation
of voters' civil right. The practice of vote suppression is
fundamentally unfair and un-American. It cannot be allowed
to continue as a legitimate strategy. It is a crime.
Subject: Re: Social Security Poll
Even many Repubs are doubtful Bush's plan will be implemented.
Most Dems and AARP are against it. This is AOL poll today.
Do you like President Bush's plan for Social Security?
I need to know more about it 11%
Yes, it's a good plan 10%
Subject: What a surprise!
To Anyone at Time Magazine That May Read This:
Thank you Time magazine for selecting George W. Bush as "Person
of the Year." At first I thought you might award it to
Bill Gates, who has given billions of his own money to help
reduce starvation and disease in third world countries, or
Colin Powell for his efforts to move toward peace in the world
by attempting to develop dialogue and communication with foreign
Whew...you had me pretty nervous for a while. I can't imagine
what it would be like to have peace in the world anyway...can
you? Thank God we have a compassionate Christian for our War
President. Thank God we have a leader to remind us that it's
hard work, it's tough and it's about doing the right thing.
Ya know...I can't imagine anything that would be harder or
more difficult than looking someone in the eye after selecting
Bush for "Person of the Year" except maybe trying
to explain why he was selected - but that's just me. By the
way don't forget to tell Rove not to put the magazine in with
Bush's Presidential Briefing or he may never see it. Imagine!
A guy that hates to read and can barely speak English on the
cover of Time magazine. Good thing you put his picture on
the cover and not page two or he'd probably never find it.
Anyway, I'm happy to report that as a result of your insensitive,
insulting and appalling selection I will be spending less
time at the magazine counter deciding which news magazine
to purchase since Time magazine is no longer a consideration.
Subject: Check out "German guy warns of December 27th
This may or may not be 'true' but it sure reads to me as
something to take very, very seriously. Nuclear threat to
Houston and/or elsewhere in U.S.A. Planned by the "hidden
hand" of which Paul Wolfowitz is claimed by the German
Guy to be not only a key member but directly involved with
orchestration of 911.
Given that the President's approval rating is the worst of
any President in 80 years and the Inauguration is upcoming,
it would follow the same pattern as the 911 "attack"
that afterwards resulted in the President's soaring approval
ratings. Here we are at the very bottom...sounds more than
Please read and share.
[BuzzFlash Note: Here's the url, for those who don't mind
delving deeply into conspiracy stuff. It reminds us of the
movie, "A Beautiful Mind": http://www.thekind.com/]
Subject: New federal rules slash college students' aid for
Well, as long as Halliburton and co. keeps getting no bid
jobs and making even more money by NOT feeding soldiers or
reconstruction, things are GOOD in American for George Bush's
"base".... and THAT'S what and WHOM it's about....
students face cut in aid: New federal rules will slash Pell
grants for 1.3 million (NY Times/seattlepi.com)
A BuzzFlash Reader
[BuzzFlash Note: Just wanted to share these excerpts, too:
"But this year, the administration found support from
congressional leaders seeking to constrain the growing cost
of Pell Grants, an expense that has steadily increased as
more low-income students go to college. ...Parents who earn
at least $15,000 will be negatively affected in every state
except New Jersey and Connecticut. Those in Delaware, Michigan,
Iowa, Nebraska, South Carolina and Wisconsin will be among
the hardest hit." We can almost hear Bush and the
Republicans saying, "We just can't have those kids whose
parents' earn $15,000 a year getting an education, now, can
we? Those kids belong in our all volunteer military."
Subject: Re: Vermont Soldier
After reading that story in the Burlington Free Press about
that Marine who'd not only beaten his parents in a drunken
rage but resisted going into a police cruiser after being
How can anyone deny that war can make monsters of people?
This 31-year-old man was in Guantanamo, for crying out loud!
I hope that he calms himself the hell down and tells the press
that being there made a monster out of him.
Yet, there's another thing I have to wonder: OK, he had no
priors. But, could this anger have been in him *prior* to
serving? I mean, could being in Guantanamo have made a *worse*
monster out of him?
I hope to hear and read more of his story, because I feel
bad that he'd returned to civilian life extremely volatile,
and, yet, I feel nothing but repulsion for him after the Burlington
Free Press reported that he'd beaten his parents bloody.
I don't care how many times I hear that the U.S. just can't
leave Iraq now. It has to be utter bullshit. Other countries
have pulled out their troops, but, we can't pull out OURS????
Lisa in Boston
[BuzzFlash Note: Another report on this, quite disturbing:
Denies Attacking His Parents (WCAX.com).]
Subject: A feature gone, a force lost
Sirs & Mesdames:
One of the most salient features of BuzzFlash was your extensive
presentation of letters to the editor, now vanished. Here people
could vent and could share their agony and their suggestions
for solutions. It is no less than tragic that this feature has
disappeared and has succeeded in diminishing the force and significance
New York, NY
[BuzzFlash Note: Vanished? Your letters are here (though some
get moved into the Contributor pages). Keep writing.]